Sunday, June 27, 2010

International GT Open Won BY CRS Racing Ferrari Today

From the GT Open Website:

Spectacular accident between Aguas and Barba

The CRS Racing took its second win in the International GT Open, this time with Chris Niarchos and Tim Mullen, in another dramatic finale, ahead of the Porsches of Raymond Narac-Patrick Pilet (IMSA) and Richard Lietz-Gianluca Roda (Autorlando).

The race was marked by a spectacular accident in lap 5 involving the two AF Corse Ferraris of Rui Aguas and Alvaro Barba. The Portuguese and the Spaniard, whose cars were destroyed, where brought to the Verviers hospital for checks but both are OK, although a little bit shaken by the shunt.

Porsche made a one-two in GTS with De Lorenzi Racing taking its maiden victory with Gianluca De Lorenzi and Stefano Borghi, ahead of the Autorlando car of Gruber-Deverikos and the Villois Aston of Lancieri-Lancelotti.

The bad day had by the championship leaders has partly re-open the situation in the standings of both the overall and GTS championships: Barba-Kaffer now have a 12-points over Roda-Lietz, while in GTS, Dayraut is only 2 points ahead of Frezza-Couceiro.

It was interesting grid, with Lietz and Lieb (usually team-mates in the LMS) in first row, but both were beaten at the start by Toccacelo and Kirkaldy. At the end of the first lap, the two Ferraris lead ahead of Lietz, Aguas, Barba, Lieb, Narac, Broniszewski, Deverikos and Mortimer, while Livio has remained trapped in the gravel.

The fight is fierce at the top and in lap 4 Lietz passes Kirkaldy for second and Barba passes Aguas. In lap 5, the incident that marks the race: at the exit of Blanchimont, Kirkaldy loses his car, spins and hits the armco; Barba who followed the Scot very closely, lifts up for a second, and Aguas attempts to pass his team-mate from off the track. The two collide at the entrance of the bus-stop, hitting hardly the wall.

After the inevitable period of safety-car and the driver changes (the window has been extended 10 minutes), it is Roda leading, ahead of Mullen, Pilet, Peter, Giammaria and Borghi, who leads in GTS ahead of Bullitt and Gruber.

With very short gaps, the battle is intense. Mullen passes Roda and so does Pilet and the French attacks the Scot, but the CRS Ferrari keeps the advantage and wins, while Peter takes fourth having resisted the attacks of Giammaria. The De Lorenzi Porsche wins in GTS, ahead of the sister car of Gruber-Deverikos and the Aston of Lancelotti.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Edil Cris F430 Wins GT Open Race 1 @ Spa

Day of glory for Giammaria-Toccacelo (EdilCris) Edil Cris Racing Team’s long quest for victory has come to an end: Raffaele Giammaria and Enrico Toccacelo won the Saturday race in Spa, giving the black Ferrari of the Italian team its first win since 2006.

In GTS, Marco Frezza and Pedro Couceiro (Kessel Ferrari) took a well-deserved first win this year, after three second places, ahead of GTS championship leader Jean-Philippe Dayraut (this time assisted by Frédéric Mackowiecki in the Luxury Ferrari), with the other Kessel F430 of Livio-Bontempelli third.

Poleman Kaffer keeps the lead at the start, but without being able to get rid of Mullen, Pilet, Giammaria, Peter and Griffin, while at the back of the grid Hummel and Moro get in contact after La Source.

The group of six quickly flew away, with the GTS cars leading the rest of the group, with Dayraut, Frezza and Bruck in the top three. In lap 7, the safety car is out to allow taking out of the gravel the car of Moro, who has spun. At the restart, Pilet has to pit with a damaged tire while there is a contact at La Source between the CRS Ferrari of Hummel and the Manthay Porsche of Bullitt. Both cars are out, while a lot of debris and oil are left on the track.

Kaffer is the first of top guns to stop for the driver change, leaving Griffin and Mullen fight for first. After driver changes and handicaps, it is Toccacelo leading ahead of Niarchos, Gerber, Couceiro (leading in GTS), Barba and Lietz. The fight in the final laps will be superb: Toccacelo, with a broken splitter, is obliged to slow the pace, while Barba and Lietz catch up on Niarchos; the AF Ferrari takes second in the penultimate lap and attacks Toccacelo in the very last chicane, passing him but cutting the bus stop. Lietz, on his part, takes fourth from Niarchos in the last corner as well, while there is a final spin of Broniszewski.

In GTS, Couceiro wins with no problem ahead of Makowiecki, while Livio is third few tenths ahead of the Ford of Alex Mortimer, whose final charge finishes with an excellent 4th position, a nice reward for a team that lost his owner and boss a few days ago.

International GT Open Qualifying at Spa

Ferraris dominated the qualifying for race 1 in Spa, under warm weather, as five F430 took the first five spots, with the series leader, Pierre Kaffer (AF Corse) taking pole ahead of Mullen (CRS), Griffin (AF), Giammaria (Edil Cris) and Peter (Kessel).

The first Porsche, the IMSA of Pilet, is sixth, ahead of the surprising Viper GT3 of Vulkan Racing, clearly the fastest car in GTS. The Villois Aston GT2 broke the drive-shaft but is expecting to be repaired, while the second Veka Ferrari has been withdrawn.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Published: 21 Jun 2010 MarcVDS Racing Press Release

The wonderful Mustang of the Marc VDS Racing Team has not participated in the third round of the FIA GT3 Championship, this weekend in Jarama. Even though Maxime Martin and Eric De Doncker had set the third time in qualifying, the car had to stay in the box due to a problem with the homologation papers.

The Spanish weekend had taken a great start: during free practice and qualifying Maxime Martin had set the third time overall, only 89 thousands of a second down on the quickest time. That could have resulted in a great race… if there had not been a slight problem with the homologation of the car.

“After qualifying the technical scrutineers of the FIA dissected our car”, Eric De Doncker explains. “And they found that the anti-roll bars were not the same as those mentioned on the homologation sheet. We were flabbergasted, because we have been using the same anti-roll bars since the beginning of the season. Together with the scrutineers we studied the problem and we discovered that the measurements mentioned on the homologation sheet are completely wrong. The proof that we had no wrong intentions was given by the fact that the anti-roll bars on the homologation sheet could not even be put on the car, since they are too large!”

There is only one way to solve this bizarre problem, and that is correcting the homologation sheet. Unfortunately this is not possible during a race meeting, there is a whole administrative procedure to be followed…

“So we were caught between a rock and a hard place”, Eric De Doncker continues. “Or we drove with the bars that were on the car, because there were no others available and the ones from the homologation could not be put on the car. But that would have given us a FIA report by the scrutineers. So we left the car in the garage, even though that broke our heart…”

Especially since the weekend had started so well. “Indeed”, De Doncker confirms. “Since Brno the team has been working very hard, also thanks to the engineers from Bosch, who helped solve our ABS problems. Al those efforts should have been rewarded by a great result. But we can try again in Paul Ricard in two weeks’ time, after we cut through all the red tape…”

DARN!!!!!!! And they qualified 3rd!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Iowa Corn Indy 250

Kanaan won and I have egg on my face.. I missed it and it appears on replays to have been a really close race.
Oh, well! If IndyCar is going to get good on an oval, glad it was in my home State!
I really do hope this series makes it. So far it's all we have with big names in open wheel cars. Other than WOO, on dirt.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

GT3 From Jarama Race 6!

First Win for BMW Z4 at Jarama (GT3 Website)

Round 6 proved to be a race of firsts as Csaba Walter took the chequered flag in the Need for Speed by Schubert Motorsport BMW Z4 over 20 seconds ahead of the Prospeed Competition Porsche 911 GT3R. It was the first FIA GT3 win for BMW, Dunlop and the Schubert Motorsport team. Walter is also the first Hungarian winner in the championship and Claudia Huertgen the first female driver to win a race in the FIA GT3 European Championship. Marco Holzer led the race until the pitstops, holding off a very determined Huertgen, the gap between the two cars was less than one second for the first 33 minutes. Paul van Splunteren took over the Prospeed Porsche but was soon passed by the BMW. Van Splunteren consolidated his second place with the Saintloc-Phoenix Racing Audi of Stephane Lemeret moving into the final podium position by overtaking Daniel Keilwitz in the Callaway Corvette at the last corner.

Marc VDS Mustang GT3

18/06/2010 Maxime Martin to Drive Marc VDS Mustang in Spain (FIA GT3 Website)

The magnificent Mustang of the Marc VDS Racing Team will participate in the third round of the FIA GT3 Championship,to be held this weekend in Jarama, Spain. For the first time this season Eric De Doncker will share driving duties with Maxime Martin.

He is only just recovered from the emotions of Le Mans, but Eric De Doncker travelled towards Madrid this Thursday, to prepare for the third round of the FIA GT3 Championship. "It's a track I know quite well, for I have raced there with bikes and cars. However, my last race on the Spanish track, a touring car event, dates back to 1995... Time flies...", De Doncker recollects.

After the race in Brno, the team stayed in the Czech Republic to perform some interesting tests, tests which were confirmed a few days later in Spa. "Maxime Martin helped us quite a lot and we made a lot of progress. We even set times that would have put us on the front five rows of the grid", De Doncker continues. "But he also confirmed that there was something wrong with the brakes. Back in Spa two engineers of Bosch tackled the problem and recalibrated the ABS. The difference is huge!"

So there is progress at last... "Don't forget that this is a brand new car, at the start of its development, so it is logical that there are some teething problems", Marc van der Straten adds. "But listening to Eric and Maxime, I am not worried. This car has an enormous potential."
One of the important targets of the season is edging closer at well. Just over a month before the Spa 24 Hours the Marc VDS Racing Team confirmed its entry of two Mustangs in the Belgian endurance race. "In Jarama I share the car with Maxime, but once the second car is ready Scott Maxwell will rejoin the team", Eric De Doncker confirms. "I hope that will be at the races in Paul Ricard in two weeks' time. If not, we will certainly be there at the Test Day for the Spa 24 Hours, on July 7th. I now hope that the recent developments will be translated into results, beginning in Jarama this weekend."

LeMans (Finally) and Other News!

What can I say about LeMans? I have had to think it over for awhile.
I am an Audi fan, but you have to feel for Peugeot.
GT1 was a joke after the Ford's dropped out and GT2 was similar to LMP1 , a battle of attrition. LMP2 was............. LMP2.
I hope the 2011 ACO rules improve this great race. While this year it was still terrific viewing, I fear it could fall into the trap ALMS is and begin losing interest for the spectators and then the manufacturers will follow suit.
The NNWS at Elkhart Lake yesterday was fun! J. Villeneuve blowing up on the last lap was a disappointment but it was Carl Edward's race! Patrick Long learned a lot about NASCAR, yesterday.
The GrandAm was actually somewhat interesting in both DP and GT. They need an overhaul.
Today we have the Sprint Cup at Sonoma (Infineon) and I think this could be an upset. Jan Magnussen is running real well after qualifying and this is a driver that can really adapt well to all forms of racing in a hurry.
Oh, yeah. IndyCar in my home State, Iowa. Might watch. Love 'em on road courses, but you can wait for the last 10 laps on ovals.
GT3 was an upset today from Jarama! Rosberg Audi R8 LMS from 18th to 1st as the Callaway Corvette lost fuel pressure to finish 2d.

Remember to keep the blackside down!

Thursday, June 10, 2010


We had another great race weekend and now we have LeMans. Looks like Peugeot is the best of the best in practice by 4+ seconds!

Other interesting news is that Aurora Racing Designs is working on an BMW M6 GT1 car for next year. Now that will put the pressure on M-B to get that SLS going.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

What a Weekend!!!!!!!

I don't know what you did, but we had 2 TV's and 3 'puters going to keep up with all the races worldwide.
I can't even begin to pick a favorite, although, once again I think the Charlotte 600 was a little slower than the others.
Penske and Gannasi teams sure had a good weekend, the GrandAm was interesting right to the end, DTM was good, as was the ADAC GT Masters. Indy was very good, IMO, and F1 was controversial again, with some real dices! Seb Vettel definitely messed up, though.

We took a lot of time to honor our troops and those who gave the largest gift for our freedom. I hope you did, too.