Tuesday, Jan 18
Adam Sinclair

Adam Sinclair

Adam has been a race fan since the first time he went through the tunnel under the Daytona International Speedway more than 30 years ago. He has had the privilege of traveling to races all across the state of Florida (as well as one race in Ohio), watching nearly everything with a motor compete for fame and glory, as well as participating in various racing schools to get the feel of what racecar drivers go through every week.  

Adam spent several years covering motorsports for Examiner.com., where he had the opportunity to see the racing world from behind the scenes as well as the grandstands. He invites everyone to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, and looks forward to sharing his enthusiasm for all things racing with the readers of SpeedwayDigest.com.

Be sure to tune in for his sports talk program, Thursday Night Thunder, where he discusses the latest in motorsports news with drivers, crew members, and fans. The show takes place (almost) every Thursday at 8:00 pm EST on the Speedway Digest Radio Network. 

Contact Adam: Email  

  

 

Toyota announced today that Torrence Racing will join Team Toyota beginning with the 2022 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series season. The addition of Torrence Racing’s two-team effort expands Toyota’s team partnerships to include five Top Fuel dragsters and two Funny Cars. 

 

“Torrence Racing is a leader in NHRA competition, and we look forward to bringing Steve and Billy into the Toyota family in 2022,” said Paul Doleshal, Group Manager, Motorsports and Assets, Toyota Motor North America (TMNA). “We have incredible drivers and team partners in the NHRA landscape. The addition of Steve and Billy Torrence will only enhance that outstanding lineup.”

 

Torrence Racing has been a dominant force in NHRA in recent years. Steve has driven to 49 victories in 263 career events and three Top Fuel championships. This season, Steve has won nine times and is the current points leader. His father, Billy, has won twice this year and eight times in his career. Despite running a part-time schedule, Billy is currently fifth in the overall point standings.

 

Toyota provides its NHRA teams with tow vehicles, along with engineering, technology and trackside support through TRD (Toyota Racing Development). In addition to Torrence Racing, Toyota will continue to support Antron Brown’s newly established team – AB Motorsports, DC Motorsports and Kalitta Motorsports’ three-team effort in 2022.

 

“I’ve been blessed to have a lot of success in my NHRA career, but I feel like this new partnership with Toyota and TRD will only improve what Torrence Racing can do on the track,” said Steve Torrence. “I’ve seen firsthand that the drivers and teams associated with Toyota aren’t just part of their roster, but part of a family. They are a special manufacturer that puts people first and that’s the type of partnership our team is excited to be a part of starting next season.”

 

Steve and Billy Torrence join a Toyota driver lineup that includes three-time NHRA Top Fuel champion Brown, U.S. Nationals winner Alexis DeJoria, 49-time race winner Doug Kalitta, 2013 Top Fuel champion Shawn Langdon and 2018 Funny Car champion J.R. Todd.

 

Toyota is celebrating its 20th season in NHRA this year. Toyota drivers have won 137 Top Fuel and 43 Funny Car races along with six Top Fuel and three Funny Car championships during its tenure in the series.

Receiving a cancer diagnosis is all too common in the U.S., with one in three Americans developing cancer in their lifetime. In fact, nearly all of us have been touched by cancer whether it’s a loved one, a friend or even ourselves. That’s why, in 2013, AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE: AN), America’s largest and most admired automotive retailer, made the decision to direct all its charitable initiatives towards fighting cancer. Two years later, it launched its Drive Pink initiative and to date has raised and donated more than $28 million to create awareness and support critical research and treatment through partnerships with cancer charities from coast to coast.

 

“We take tremendous pride in the many partnerships we’ve forged through our fundraising efforts not only during Breast Cancer Awareness Month but all year long,” said Marc Cannon, Executive Vice President and Chief Customer Experience Officer. “It’s thanks to the generosity and commitment of our partners and Associates that we’re able to provide this substantial support.”

 

On Tuesday, October 12 and Wednesday, October 20, 2021, AutoNation will host two events at DRV PNK Stadium, home to Inter Miami CF, to continue raising awareness and funds to drive out cancer:

 

Drive Pink Week

On October 12, in celebration of the 6th Annual DRVPNK Across America Day, Inter Miami CF players join AutoNation Associates to fill comfort bags for cancer patients at AutoNation-sponsored, DRV PNK Stadium. Every October, Associates from more than 300 AutoNation locations coast to coast unite to honor those touched by cancer. This year, Associates from more than 300 locations will write thousands of messages of hope to those who are battling the disease.     

 

Drive Pink Night

On October 20, fans are encouraged to support the DRVPNK cause at the Inter Miami CF vs. Toronto FC match with opportunities to honor loved ones touched by cancer by wearing pink that evening. The first 10,000 fans who enter the stadium will receive FREE pink rally towels.  Inter Miami will also join AutoNation to recognize 4-time INDY 500® Champion Hélio Castroneves at the pre-game ceremony.  Last May, Castroneves won his epic fourth INDY 500 as a proud member of the DRVPNK AutoNation Racing Team.

 

AutoNation is the official and exclusive automotive dealership partner of Inter Miami CF.

 

About AutoNation, Inc.
AutoNation, America's largest and most admired automotive retailer, is transforming the automotive industry through its bold leadership, innovation, and comprehensive brand extensions. As of June 30, 2021, AutoNation owned and operated over 300 locations from coast to coast. AutoNation has sold over 13 million vehicles, the first automotive retailer to reach this milestone. AutoNation's success is driven by a commitment to delivering a peerless experience through Customer-focused sales and service processes. Since 2013, AutoNation has raised over $28 million to drive out cancer, create awareness, and support critical research through its DRIVE PINK initiative, which was officially branded in 2015.

 

Please visit www.autonation.cominvestors.autonation.comwww.twitter.com/CEOMikeJackson, and www.twitter.com/AutoNation, where AutoNation discloses additional information about the Company, its business, and its results of operations. Please also visit www.autonationdrive.com, AutoNation's automotive blog, for information regarding the AutoNation community, the automotive industry, and current automotive news and trends.

By Mark Robinson
IMSA Wire Service
 
 
The opportunity to race in the only prototype action this weekend at his home track – VIRginia International Raceway – was too good to pass up, so Mike Skeen is back for his second IMSA Prototype Challenge race of the season.
 
Skeen is rejoining Jr III Racing for Sunday’s three-hour race on the 3.27-mile, 17-turn road course some 45 minutes from where the native Virginian grew up. Skeen, along with co-driver Terry Olson, finished second overall for Jr III in the Prototype Challenge race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in May. It was Skeen’s third podium finish in five career series starts.
 
 
In 2019, Skeen won at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta and finished second at VIR driving for Gilbert/Korthoff Motorsports. The 34-year-old is pulling double duty this weekend, also driving a GT Daytona entry for Gilbert/Korthoff in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race on Saturday. He’s relishing the challenge of driving two completely different race cars this weekend.
 
“It’s a little tricky, but fortunately I have a lot of experience jumping between different cars and picking them up quickly,” said Skeen, the reigning Trans Am TA2 champion who has 25 career WeatherTech Championship starts under his belt. “It also helps that we’ve done a little testing with the IPC car, so I’m pretty familiar with that and it shouldn’t be too hard to get back into it and get back to speed.”
 
Skeen is paired in the No. 3 Ligier JS P320 with Marc Sharinn, who’s looking to make his Prototype Challenge debut for a second time after mechanical issues prevented him from taking the green flag at Watkins Glen International in July.
 
“We’ve tested with him a bit and he’s getting used to the car,” Skeen said of Sharinn, who turned minimal practice laps at Watkins Glen. “Certainly, this is the highest-level racing he’s done. It will be interesting to see how he does, but we’re really not putting a whole lot of pressure on ourselves.”
 
There is pressure atop the Prototype Challenge standings with just two races remaining. Moritz Kranz holds a narrow 10-point lead in Le Mans Prototype 3-1 (LMP3-1) heading into the VIR weekend. He’s raced with a co-driver in two races and driven solo in two, winning one race each way in the No. 21 Muehlner Motorsports America Duqueine D08.
 
Right behind Kranz in the points are No. 54 MLT Motorsports Ligier co-drivers Dakota Dickerson and Josh Sarchet, who have finished on the podium in all four 2021 races and won at Watkins Glen.
 
In the LMP3-2 class for previous-generation cars, George Staikos and Danny Kok will clinch the season crown by starting in Sunday’s race.
 
The Prototype Challenge schedule features a practice on Friday afternoon and another Saturday morning, ahead of qualifying at 4:35 p.m. ET Saturday. The race streams live at 8:45 a.m. Sunday on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.

Fans witnessed a second day of high adrenaline racing yesterday at ERX Motor Park, the latest stop on the five-city Nitro Rallycross 2021 calendar. The best drivers in the world went head-to-head on Nitro RX’s latest revolutionary track, pushing their limits on a challenging new course with huge jumps, steep berms and multiple lines. 

 

In the marquee SuperCars classRallycross veteran Scott Speed (USA) added a Nitro RX trophy to his collection with a textbook performance, leading the stacked field from start to finish. The victory was especially sweet as it completed Speed’s comeback from a broken back sustained at Nitro Rallycross in 2019.

 

Speed finished less than half of a second ahead motorsports icon – and fellow Subaru Motorsports USA teammate - Travis Pastrana (USA). Placing third, Kevin Hansen (SWE) maintained the Hansen family’s hold on the Nitro RX podium: Kevin took the top prize in 2019 while his brother Timmy won last weekend at Nitro RX’s Salt Lake City kickoff as well as in 2018 at Nitro RX’s debut race.

 

Supercar Final (Minneapolis):

Finish

Car #

Name

Nation

Team

1

41

Scott Speed

USA

Subaru Motorsports USA

2

199

Travis Pastrana

USA

Subaru Motorsports USA

3

9

Kevin Hansen

SWE

Red Bull Hansen NRX Team

4

21

Timmy Hansen

SWE

Red Bull Hansen NRX Team

5

35

Fraser McConnell

JAM

Olsbergs MSE

6

4

Robin Larsson

SWE

Monster Energy RX Cartel

7

13

Andreas Bakkerud

NOR

Subaru Motorsports USA

8

34

Tanner Foust

USA

Dreyer Reinbold Racing

9

00

Steve Arpin

CAN

GRX Loenbro

10

23

Oliver Eriksson

SWE

Olsbergs MSE

 

Supercar Championship Standings:

Position

Name

Nation

Team

Salt Lake City

Minneapolis

Total

1

Timmy Hansen

SWE

Red Bull Hansen NRX Team

51

36

87

2

Scott Speed

USA

Subaru Motorsports USA

34

53

87

3

Kevin Hansen

SWE

Red Bull Hansen NRX Team

41

44

85

4

Travis Pastrana

USA

Subaru Motorsports USA

28

47

75

5

Fraser McConnell

JAM

Olsbergs MSE

37

31

68

6

Steve Arpin

CAN

GRX Loenbro

47

12

59

7

Tanner Foust

NOR

Dreyer Reinbold Racing

16

15

31

8

Andreas Bakkerud

NOR

Subaru Motorsports USA

10

20

30

9

Robin Larsson

SWE

Monster Energy RX Cartel

 

26

26

10

Oliver Eriksson

SWE

Olsbergs MSE

20

5

25

11

Oliver Bennett

GBR

XCITE Energy Racing

1

 

1

11

Liam Doran

GBR

Monster Energy RX Cartel

 

1

1

 

In the final of the NRX Next developmental class, Sage Karam (USA) completed a stunning comeback from seventh place to take the win, becoming the fourth different winner in four rounds of competition. Spun around backwards on the first turn after a frenzied start, Karam thought his chances of making the podium were finished. Nonetheless, he pressed on and worked his way through the field to cross the finish line nine ahead of runner-up George Megennis (USA). Martin Enlund (SWE) followed up his win Saturday with a third-place finish in this contest.

 

NRX Next Final (Round 4):

Finish

Car #

Name

Nation

Team

1

24

Sage Karam

USA

Dreyer Reinbold Racing

2

9

George Megennis

USA

#YellowSquad

3

60

Martin Enlund

SWE

Enlunds Motorsport

4

55

Lane Vacala

USA

Dreyer Reinbold Racing

5

99

Eric Gordon

USA

Bak 40 Motorsports

6

36

Casper Jansson

SWE

Enlunds Motorsport

7

44

John Holtger

USA

Dreyer Reinbold Racing

 

In a battle of motorsports legends, Tanner Foust (USA) held off Brian Deegan (USA) to take gold in the special Side-By-Side event. It was a back and forth contest, with Foust and Deegan putting on a master class for the crowd. Scottie Lawrence (USA) secured a third-place finish on the podium.

 

Side-By-Side Final (Round 2):

Finish

Car #

Name

Nation

1

34

Tanner Foust

USA

2

38

Brian Deegan

USA

3

26

Scottie Lawrence

USA

4

48

Corry Weller

USA

5

7

Jason Luburgh

USA

6

714

Andy Ives

USA

7

2

Catie Munnings

GBR

8

37

Mia Chapman

USA

9

91

Kyle Chaney

USA

10

15

Andrew Carlson

USA

 

The intense action of Nitro RX heads next to Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Phoenix, Arizona on November 13 and 14. For nearly four decades, the venue has been a true destination for speed and competition. Now Nitro RX is set to unveil another bold new track that will redefine racing. 

 

To experience Nitro RX’s high-flying action in person, tickets can be purchased at https://www.nitrorallycross.com/calendarFans can also watch live on Peacock in the U.S. as well as on YouTube worldwide.

 

2021 NITRO RALLYCROSS SCHEDULE

Nov. 13-14 // Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park // Phoenix, Arizona

Nov. 20-21 // Glen Helen Raceway // Southern California

Dec. 4-5 // The Firm // North Florida

Hours after the conclusion of another spectacular season of competition in the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires yesterday at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, over 300 drivers, team members, officials, sponsors, partners and guests congregated at The Legacy on Possum Run in Bellville, Ohio for a Championship Celebration. In all, more than $3.1 million was distributed – the bulk of it to a selection of talented young drivers who are steadily progressing along the unique three-rung open-wheel racing ladder with a singular goal of competing in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES and the Indianapolis 500.
 
Fittingly, all three championship titles were decided during the VP Racing Fuels Championship Weekend Presented by Cooper Tires, which comprised a total of six races on the challenging 2.258-mile Mid-Ohio track situated midway between Columbus and Cleveland.
 
Kiko Porto, 18, from Recife, Brazil, was the first to clinch, with a third-place finish for DEForce Racing in Saturday’s penultimate round of the first step on the ladder, the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship. Porto will receive a scholarship package valued at $406,305 to ensure graduation to the next step on the ladder, the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires, in 2022.
 
Christian Rasmussen, 21, from Copenhagen, Denmark, needed merely to start yesterday's Indy Pro 2000 finale to be assured of his second championship title in as many years for the Jay Howard Driver Development team after winning the USF2000 crown in 2020. He did rather better than that, rising from the back of the grid to score a last-gasp podium finish. Rasmussen earned a package valued at $723,065 which will guarantee his progression to the top step of the ladder, Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, next season.
 
Similarly, Andretti Autosport’s Kyle Kirkwood, 22, from Jupiter, Fla., needed merely to avoid a last-place finish in order to secure the Indy Lights crown and a scholarship valued at over $1.3 million which will fund a minimum of three races in the 2022 NTT INDYCAR SERIES, including the 106th Indianapolis 500. He survived a few scares along the way during a wet race but ultimately accomplished his goal with a fifth-place result.
 
Kirkwood became the first driver to win scholarships on all three levels, having accumulated an astonishing 31 wins from a total of 50 starts since making his USF2000 debut in 2018.
 
Other notable awards included one-day Indy car tests for each of the top three Indy Lights drivers. David Malukas (HMD Motorsports), from Chicago, Ill., and Linus Lundqvist (Global Racing Group with HMD Motorsports), 22, from Stockholm, Sweden, will join Kirkwood in gaining their first official taste of an NTT INDYCAR SERIES car just prior to the annual Chris Griffis Memorial Road to Indy Test at the Indianapolis Grand Prix circuit in Speedway, Ind., at the end of this month.
 
Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires Award Winners:
 
Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires
 
Champion: scholarship package valued at $1,369,425 to advance to the NTT INDYCAR SERIES in 2022* – Kyle Kirkwood, Andretti Autosport
Second Place ($200,000**) – David Malukas, HMD Motorsports
Third Place ($150,000**) – Linus Lundqvist, Global Racing Group w/ HMD Motorsports
Team Champion ($35,000) – HMD Motorsports
Cooper Tires Rookie of the Year ($35,000) – Kyle Kirkwood, Andretti Autosport
Hi-Tide Spirit Award ($1,000) – Sting Ray Robb, Juncos Hollinger Racing
Tilton Hard Charger Award ($1,000) – Christian Bogle, Carlin
AiM Move of the Year ($1,000) – Kyle Kirkwood, Andretti Autosport
INDYCAR Mechanic of the Year ($1,000 Snap-On Certificate) – Chris Sheffer, HMD Motorsports
Rotiform Winning Driver Team Owner Trophy/Set of Street Wheels – Andretti Autosport
Dallara Bent Pushrod Award ($2,000) – Andretti Autosport
Josten’s Indy Lights Champion’s Ring – Kyle Kirkwood, Andretti Autosport
Original Artwork by Jim Swintal – Kyle Kirkwood, Andretti Autosport
 
*$1,250,000 Scholarship to advance to the NTT INDYCAR Series, $25,000 Dallara Parts Credit, $7,500 Bell Helmet Award, $6,925 Sabelt Award, $5,000 Cosworth Refurbishment Award, $75,000 one-day Indy car test = $1,369,425
 
**includes one-day Indy car test valued at $75,000
 
Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires
 
Champion: scholarship package valued at $723,065 to advance to Indy Lights in 2022* – Christian Rasmussen, Jay Howard Driver Development
Second Place ($40,000) – Braden Eves, Exclusive Autosport
Third Place ($20,000) – Hunter McElrea, Pabst Racing
Team Champion ($10,000) – Exclusive Autosport
Cooper Tires Rookie of the Year ($7,500) – Christian Rasmussen, Jay Howard Driver Development
Hi-Tide Spirit Award ($1,000) – Hunter McElrea, Pabst Racing
Tilton Hard Charger Award ($1,000) – James Roe, Turn 3 Motorsport
AiM Move of the Year ($1,000) – Artem Petrov, Exclusive Autosport
The Ticket Clinic Fastest Lap Award ($1,000) – Christian Rasmussen, Jay Howard Driver Development
INDYCAR Mechanic of the Year ($1,000 Snap-On Certificate) – Nick Denny, Jay Howard Driver Development
Rotiform Winning Driver Team Owner Trophy/Set of Street Wheels – Jay Howard Driver Development
Carl Haas Golden Wishbone Award ($1,000) – Jay Howard Driver Development
Josten’s Indy Pro 2000 Champion’s Ring – Christian Rasmussen, Jay Howard Driver Development
Original Artwork by Jim Swintal – Christian Rasmussen, Jay Howard Driver Development
 
*$600,000 Scholarship to advance to Indy Lights, Cooper Tires Tire Allotment Award valued at $68,640, Series Race Entry Fee Award valued at $35,000, $7,500 Bell Helmet Award, $6,925 Sabelt Award, $5,000 Wheel Pros Bonus Award = $723,065
 
Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship
 
Champion: scholarship package valued at $406,305 to advance to Indy Pro 2000 in 2022* – Kiko Porto, DEForce Racing
Second Place ($20,000) – Michael d’Orlando, Cape Motorsports
Third Place ($10,000) – Yuven Sundaramoorthy, Pabst Racing
Team Champion ($7,500) – DEForce Racing
Hyperco Rookie of the Year ($2,500) – Spike Kohlbecker, Ignite Autosport with Cape Motorsports
Hi-Tide Spirit Award ($1,000) – Michael Myers, Michael Myers Racing
Tilton Hard Charger Award ($1,000) – Trey Burke, Joe Dooling Autosports
AiM Move of the Year ($1,000) – Christian Weir, Turn 3 Motorsport
INDYCAR Mechanic of the Year ($1,000 Snap-On Certificate) – Isreal Jimenez, DEForce Racing
Rotiform Winning Driver Team Owner Trophy/Set of Street Wheels – DEForce Racing
Carl Haas Golden Wishbone Award ($1,000) – Force Indy
Josten’s USF2000 Champion’s Ring – Kiko Porto, DEForce Racing
Original Artwork by Jim Swintal – Kiko Porto, DEForce Racing
 
*$325,000 Scholarship to advance to Indy Pro 2000, Cooper Tires Tire Allotment Award valued at $33,480, Series Race Entry Fee Award valued at $28,400, $7,500 Bell Helmet Award, $6,925 Sabelt Award, $5,000 Wheel Pros Bonus Award = $406,305
 
QUOTEBOARD:
 
Dan Andersen, Owner and CEO of Andersen Promotions: “Once again, the season presented extraordinary challenges for the entire Road to Indy, and I am very appreciative of the way the teams, the drivers, the racetracks and the entire Andersen Promotions staff stepped up to put together a complete season. Each series conducted a full schedule, with every one of those races providing their own excitement, with many twists and turns on the way to the final championship results. Kiko Porto, Christian Rasmussen and Kyle Kirkwood represent the future of motorsports and we look forward to following their achievements as they move up the ladder, with the opportunity to join drivers like Colton Herta and Pato O'Ward who have earned success in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. This evening highlighted so many fantastic achievements by the talented young drivers who make up our fields, and we are very proud to be a part of their ongoing careers in motorsports. And of course, we couldn't do this without our partner, Cooper Tire. Congratulations to all of tonight's winners and to the entire Road to Indy. We look forward to 2022."
 
Chris Pantani, Director of Motorsports, Cooper Tires: “Tonight, we come together as a series to celebrate the 2021 Road to Indy Champions and the future stars of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. The Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires continues to prove that it’s the most direct path to the NTT INDYCAR SERIES for any young driver interested in open-wheel racing. I would like to once again recognize Dan Andersen, Michelle Kish and the entire Andersen Promotions staff that make up the Road to Indy. Dan’s vision and relentless dedication is what makes the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires the success we see today.”
 
Kyle Kirkwood Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires Champion: “This is pretty insane, to think of all of this as a whole. So many people that are here tonight I’ve raced with my entire life: Cape, Abel, RP Motorsports – even though they unfortunately aren’t here this weekend – and Andretti. They’ve been my family all the way through and it’s really cool to see where my career has gone these past four years, with three championship seasons. I’ll cherish these times; this is an important milestone in my career and I hope it takes me somewhere.
 
“Since I was a child, INDYCAR has been my goal. I’ve seen so many people I’ve grown up with make it, drivers like Pato (O’Ward), Colton (Herta) and Oliver (Askew), and I’ve always been on a trend right behind them. To be able to make it, to match up with those guys, to beat records on the Road to Indy set by drivers that I would never expect to challenge, is incredible. It’s all just now sinking in.”
 
Christian Rasmussen winner of the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires: “To be honest, it really hasn’t sunk in yet. It still feels so surrealistic to think about what we’ve accomplished this year. It’s been a great year with Jay Howard Driver Development, both of us in our rookie season in the series. We knew it would be difficult, given how competitive the series is and with so many good teams and drivers, for us to come in and win. To overcome that, to be quick right out of the gate, was so important. It gave me so much motivation for the rest of the season, knowing that we were quick. It means everything to me to win the scholarship – I wouldn’t have been able to race this year without the USF2000 scholarship so I’m happy to carry on that legacy, to be one of the drivers to carry that moniker. For my career, the scholarship is absolutely crucial to help me continue on the Road to Indy. Knowing I have a seat guaranteed in Indy Lights next year is incredible and I can’t wait to get started.”
 
Kiko Porto, winner of the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship: “The DEForce team and I worked so hard this year and gave a 100 percent commitment from the start of the season. We had some tough breaks early in the year but we kept pushing. I’m so happy how fast we went all year, going better and better all season. This is an incredible moment for me and for the team, and for everyone who helps me be here. 2022 starts now, we need to start as fast as we can so we can begin the season strong. This scholarship gives me the opportunity to continue my career, it’s an incredible opportunity. I hope to represent the Road to Indy the best I can – thank you to everyone for making this possible. Everyone on the grid wants this opportunity and I am so grateful.”
 
Veterans and active military will be honored throughout the Nov. 10-13 weekend of the 24th Annual Motul Petit Le Mans with special ticket pricing, hospitality opportunities and the opportunity to participate in pre-race ceremonies for the final race of the 2021 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
 
The Motul Petit Le Mans is being held one month later than its traditional date, with gates opening to the public Wednesday, Nov. 10. All veterans and active military, with proof of service, can purchase one four-day ticket for $50, a $40 discount off the already reduced advance-purchase price. 
 
Veterans and active service members attending Thursday’s popular Motul Petit Le Mans night practice, as well as their families, are invited to a Veteran’s Day drop-in hospitality event in the Tower Paddock chalet from 5-8 p.m., where snacks, beverages and a great view of the front straight and pitlane will be available.
Motul Petit Le Mans
Also, as part of the celebration, each race team competing in the IMSA season finale will have a service member serve as an honorary team member during the pre-race ceremonies Saturday, Nov. 13th. This role will include walking across the pre-race stage for driver introductions and being introduced to the crowd.
 
“Our nation’s veterans deserve to be recognized and appreciated every day, but we’re glad for the opportunity to celebrate them and their families at the 24th Annual Motul Petit Le Mans,” said Rick Humphrey, president and general manager of Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. “This occasion to honor our military is one that presented itself with the changing of our event dates to November, which meant the Thursday of race week would fall on Veteran’s Day. With much respect and admiration for our nation’s veterans, we look forward to the chance to make their experience here even more special.”
 
The 24th Annual Motul Petit Le Mans endurance classic kicks off Wednesday, Nov. 10 and culminates with the 10-hour IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship season finale starting at 10:10 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 13. 

 

(Courtesy of Road Atlanta)

By David Phillips
IMSA Wire Service
 
 
In the words of noted motorsports buff Bob Dylan, “Never think you’ve arrived. Always be in a state of becoming.” 
 
Although it’s doubtful Mr. Dylan has ever set foot on the well-manicured grounds of VIRginia International Raceway, his words could have been the mantra of Connie Nyholm and Harvey Siegel as they went about resurrecting the fabled motorsports facility some 20 years ago after it had gone to seed in the 1980s and ‘90s.
 
Not content with restoring the iconic road course to mere serviceability, Nyholm and Siegel used the rebirth of VIR to create the country’s first “motorsport resort” featuring upscale lodging and dining, trackside condominiums and suites overlooking pit lane along with a go-kart track – even skeet shooting, pistol and rifle ranges – in a setting more akin to Augusta National or Pebble Beach than your run-of-the-mill racetrack.
 
Nyholm has continued enhancing the facility’s competitor- and spectator-friendliness –since Siegel retired from ownership, selectively widening and repaving all 3.27 miles of the track’s full course layout, paving the main paddock and adding dining and lodging options such that VIR now boasts no fewer than three onsite hotels.
 
And did we mention the adjacent VIR Motorsport Technology Park, home to some of America’s leading motorsports and automotive organizations, including Team Hardpoint, which will field the No. 88 Porsche for co-drivers Rob Ferriol and Katherine Legge in Saturday’s featured race at the Michelin GT Challenge, as well as the National Tire Research Center operated by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute?
 
“On the one hand, we started with a clean sheet of paper back in 1998,” says Nyholm. “On the other hand, you could say the other tracks around the country had a 20-year head start on us, and we were playing catch-up.” 
 
Suffice to say VIR caught up quite some time ago. Nor should it come as a surprise that competitors and fans alike will find significant improvements awaiting when they arrive for IMSA’s Michelin GT Challenge at VIR this weekend, courtesy of VIR’s ongoing “infrastructure program.” Noteworthy projects include installing more robust catch fencing in Turn 1, completely new guardrails on the drivers’ right from pit out to Turn 1, and on the drivers’ right running from the exit of Turn 1 to Turn 3.
 
But if you think Nyholm and her staff believe these upgrades mean VIR has arrived, think again.
 
“We’re in the process of developing a master plan for VIR for decades to come,” she says. “We don’t start things we aren’t sure to finish, so we’ll make the projects public as soon as we are able.”
 
Like most tracks around the country, indeed worldwide, VIR took something of a financial hit during the pandemic, what with rescheduling and, at best, limited crowd capacity. If there was some relatively good news to come out of the last 18 months, it’s that the club component of VIR’s schedule has rebounded with a bang, with club activities up some 30 percent as amateurs enjoy the circuit’s wide-open spaces from behind their face-shielded helmets.
 
Now it’s time for the professional side of VIR’s calendar to follow suit.
 
“We’ve always looked forward to the IMSA weekend,” says Nyholm, “and this year’s (IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship) race will be carried live on NBC. We hope the competitors and fans who are returning – some of whom have been coming here for 20 years – will notice all the improvements.” 
 
Tickets for the Michelin GT Challenge At VIR weekend are available at virnow.com. The two-hour, 40-minute WeatherTech Championship race, featuring the GT Le Mans (GTLM) and GT Daytona (GTD) classes, airs live at noon ET Saturday on NBC. The Virginia Is for Racing Lovers Grand Prix, the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge two-hour race, streams live at 2:05 p.m. Sunday on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.

This is it. Following 15 fiercely fought Progressive American Flat Track rounds, the season-ending Honda Charlotte Half-Mile will determine the 2021 Grand National Championship under the lights at the Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Friday, October 8.

 

As they arrive in Charlotte, North Carolina, reigning two-time Mission SuperTwins presented by S&S Cycle champion Briar Bauman (No. 1 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) and living legend Jared Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) are separated by just four points. That means both factory Indian stars are in position to secure the 2021 crown from the top step of the podium, simple as that.

 

It gets a bit more complicated should another rider play the spoiler and steal away the victory. Should that happen, Mees’ slight lead earned on the strength of an active four-race win streak provides him an advantage in that he could still take the title by finishing close behind Bauman on track.

 

Considering their combined ability, winning percentage, and motivation, it may seem unlikely that another rider is able to elbow ahead with so much on the line, but Brandon Robinson (No. 44 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) managed to do just that (twice) in last year’s similarly tight DAYTONA finale.

 

The scenario of a title-shifting upset just became that much more realistic with the news that Jeffrey Carver, Jr. (No. 23 Happy Trails Racing/DPC/KullyCo/Bigelow Indian FTR750) has been added to the entry list. As a reminder, in last year’s late-season battle in Charlotte, Bauman and Mees traded the lead back and forth until privateer Carver shot past them both en route to a huge win. A repeat effort could literally decide which bike the #1 plate is brandished upon in 2022.

 

The field is stocked with potential spoilers, including Sammy Halbert (No. 69 Coolbeth-Nila Racing Indian FTR750), Jarod Vanderkooi (No. 20 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750), Brandon Price (No. 92 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) and JD Beach (No. 95 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT).

 

AFT Singles

 

The 2021 AFT Singles championship will be determined in Charlotte as well. While there doesn’t appear to be much room for drama as in the premier class, if second-ranked Max Whale (No. 18 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-FFE) manages to dethrone defending class champ Dallas Daniels (No. 1 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F), you can bet some serious drama went down.

 

With 20 points and the tiebreaker working in his favor, Daniels merely needs to finish 13th or better in the Main even if Australian Whale wins. And if Whale doesn’t win, Daniels doesn’t need to do anything but collect his trophy.

 

Morgen Mischler (No. 13 Mission Roof Systems KTM 450 SX-F) is nearly as safe in third with Daniels’ teammate, Mikey Rush (No. 15 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F), 18 points back in fourth.

 

Last year’s race at Charlotte Motor Speedway was a classic, with Daniels clinching the title thanks to a last-lap pass for victory over Mischler. Whale finished fourth, just 0.201 seconds back of the win, which sets the table nicely for another spectacular scrap on Friday night.

 

AFT Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines

 

Last season, Cory Texter (No. 65 G&G Racing/Roof Systems Yamaha MT-07) scored a holeshot-to-checkered flag win in Charlotte. The situation was considerably different, as Texter was desperate just to keep his slim 2020 AFT Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines title hopes alive at the time.

 

Now he comes into the finale having already locked down a second-career AFT Production Twins championship. That said, Texter is a racer’s racer and one making up for lost time spent as a long-time journeyman pilot. He’s unlikely to lack for motivation even with the title already taken care of.

 

Meanwhile, AFT Production Twins championship runner-up honors are still up for grabs with Chad Cose (No. 49 Voodoo Ranger/Roof Systems Harley-Davidson XG750R) nine points up on Dan Bromley (No. 62 Memphis Shades/Vinson Construction Yamaha MT-07) with one race to go.

 

The evening also presents one final chance for the likes of Ben Lowe (No. 25 Mission Roof Systems Harley-Davidson XG750R) and Jesse Janisch (No. 96 Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson XG750R) to get a win before the year is out.

 

As if that wasn’t enough, the Charlotte Half-Mile will also feature the season finale of Royal Enfield’s hugely popular BUILD. TRAIN. RACE. program and the penultimate round of the innovative Super Hooligan National Championship. BUILD. TRAIN. RACE. showcases the talent, versatility, competitiveness, and enthusiasm of female motorcyclists in its own action-packed style, while the outlaw-minded Super Hooligan series features customized heavy street bikes competing at a road race circuit, a Short Track, a Half-Mile and an asphalt oval to determine the nation’s most all-around skill heavy street bike racer.

 

The Honda Charlotte HM will also feature all the pomp and circumstance befitting a season finale off the track as well. NASCAR superstar Austin Dillon, driver of the No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE will serve as the evening’s Grand Marshal ahead of the weekend’s NASCAR doubleheader at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

 

Additionally, the Fan Zone will offer a multitude of activities, including a Tribute to the Troops presentation to a Gold Star Family, fun in the Kids Zone, live music courtesy of series’ favorite Chasing Neon and fireworks at the end of the evening to close out the 2021 season in style.

 

Exclusive to the Honda Charlotte Half-Mile experience is the introduction of the Honda Talon Fan Experience. Fans may purchase one of a very limited number of passes granting access to an exclusive ride-along experience in the Official Sport SxS of AFT: the Honda Talon. This one-of-a-kind experience includes GA admission, Paddock Access Upgrade, Mission Hospitality service and more. Information and purchasing can be found at https://store.americanflattrack.com/ebooking/ticket/view/id/3325/#selectTickets.

 

Tickets are available for purchase now at https://store.americanflattrack.com/ebooking/ticket/view/id/3325/#selectTickets. General Admission Grandstand tickets are $29 in advance (kids 12 and under free with an adult ticket purchase) and Premium GA Grandstands are just $10 more (kids 12 and under $20).

 

The Paddock Access Upgrade is a certified fun multiplier. Offering access to the pits where fans can check out the race bikes and watch the riders and teams work from close range, the upgrade comes highly recommended at $40.

 

The gates will open for fans on Friday afternoon at 2:00 p.m. ET/11:00 a.m. PT, with Opening Ceremonies scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET/4:00 p.m. PT ahead of the season’s final Main Event program. Live coverage of the entire weekend’s racing activities will be available on any device for only $1.99 a month via TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.

 

The Honda Charlotte Half-Mile will premiere on NBCSN one day later, Saturday, October 9, starting at 10:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. PT, and re-air on Friday, October 22, at 6:00 p.m. ET/3:00 p.m. PT.

 

For more information, please visit http://www.americanflattrack.com.

 

To score the latest gear for the Progressive American Flat Track fan, visit our official merchandise store at https://store.americanflattrack.com.

Irishman James Roe captured his first Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires win during yesterday’s season finale at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The rookie driver delivered a remarkable drive in the 25-lap race that saw him pull off bold passes under wet conditions to get to the lead and earn an impressive maiden victory in the competitive Road to Indy series.
 
Qualifying for yesterday’s race happened under rainy weather conditions, a familiar and welcome challenge for the Irish-born driver. After qualifying sixth, Roe was set on fighting for results in the afternoon race. On the opening lap, the rookie slotted into fourth position right before a yellow flag came out. Roe got an excellent restart on Lap 3 and soon worked his way up to P3. Another caution came out on Lap 9, allowing Roe to prepare for another charge on the next restart. Once the race was underway again, Roe utilized his strong exits at Turn 2 to set himself up for outside passes at Turn 4 to take second position, then the lead in the second half of the race.
 
Once Roe was out in front, he began distancing himself from the rest of the field, gaining over a three second lead by Lap 19. Yet another yellow flag came out with just a few laps to go, and Roe readied himself for one final restart. With an excellent restart on Lap 21, Roe was in the clear to finish the race strongly and claim a well-earned win.
 
In addition to his win, Roe was also awarded with the Tilton Hard Charger Award and $1,000 prize at last night’s Championship Celebration for gaining the most positions on track during the course of the 2021 race season.
 
Roe ended the year with one win, one pole position, ten top-ten finishes, and 243 points in the driver’s championship.

James Roe Celebrates with Champagne Spray on the Podium / ?: Road to Indy

Indy Pro 2000 Championship // #3 James Roe
Topcon/Trintech


“I couldn’t be happier to get the win at Mid-Ohio,” said James Roe. “It was probably the best drive of my career. We had phenomenal pace in such tricky conditions. The team did a fantastic job, and I did my job, so it was a true group effort. I am just so happy to finish the season on the top step of the podium for all my partners and sponsors. They all make this possible for me. This is just the start of many more wins and podiums.”
 
“I’m extremely proud of James for getting his first race win on the Road to Indy,” said Team Owner Peter Dempsey. “As a person, he deserves this win more than anyone else, not just because of how he drives but also because of the work he does outside of the car just to be able to put himself in the race car. James is the hardest working driver I’ve seen in the Road to Indy in many years, and as an Irish team owner, I’m extremely happy to be able to give an Irishman his first win in the series.”
 
“The race was tricky with the track conditions drying each lap,” continued Dempsey. “We made a few changes from qualifying in the setup and made sure we gave James the tools he needed to give him the confidence to push the car to its limits. You could see during the race he was extremely confident, and that allowed him to push to the front and make some very good passes for the lead. I’m so thankful for all the help and support the crew has gave us throughout the weekend as we battled some issues on Saturday, but James definitely redeemed himself and the team on Sunday.”
 
“I want to say a special thanks to all of the crew members that worked with us this year,” continued Dempsey. “None of our success would have been possible without each individual playing their part. I’m grateful to have assembled the team we have, and I’m looking forward to building on that next season.”

James Roe and Peter Dempsey Celebrate Victory / ?: Road to Indy

The next official event on the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires is the Chris Griffis Memorial Test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course October 30-31. The official series test will serve as an opportunity to prepare drivers for the 2022 racing season.

For racing updates, follow James Roe on Instagram at @james_roe9, on Twitter at @jamesroe10, and on Facebook at James Roe Junior.

To stay up to date on Turn 3 Motorsport, follow the team on social media using the handle @turn3motorsport.

Formula E and Bosch have today agreed a new, multi-year partnership to continue showcasing the German manufacturer’s sustainable mobility solutions.
 
Having worked closely with Formula E since first announcing their partnership in Season 4, Bosch has committed to sharing its expertise as an Official Partner of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship through Season 10. With a common goal to drive forward electromobility, Bosch and Formula E make natural partners in progressing innovation in electromobility and race-to-road EV technology.
 
With Formula E entering the Gen3 era from Season 9, Bosch will work with the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship as its more powerful and lighter cars race on city streets around the world, increasing the highly competitive, dramatic racing that fans associate with Formula E.
 
Bosch’s industry-leading software and hardware promotes innovation in all forms of e-mobility, in particular through a tailor-made vehicle management system as demonstrated in their relationship with DRAGON / PENSKE AUTOSPORT. The combined focus on technology and delivering sustainable mobility makes the partnership between Formula E and Bosch the kind of authentic, integrated collaboration the Championship prides itself on.
 
Jamie Reigle, Chief Executive Officer, Formula E, said: “Each of our partners has a true, integrated alignment to our common mission and Bosch’s leading role in accelerating the global electromobility agenda makes them the perfect partner for the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship. Bosch has committed to advancing electromobility through integrated technology and marketing initiatives and we are delighted they will continue to showcase their innovations in cities around the world in partnership with Formula E.”
 
Dr. Markus Heyn, Member of Bosch’s Board of Management, said: “Electromobility is establishing itself as a core area of business for Bosch. Electric cars with our components can by now be found on roads around the world. By continuing in our role as official sponsor of Formula E and supplier of tried-and-tested motor racing technology to the first purely electric racing series, we’re demonstrating that we’re the number-one partner for electric driving.”
 
The ABB FIA Formula E World Championship returns to the track for Season 8 in 2022. 
 
Audiences can plug in and follow the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship on FacebookInstagramTwitterTikTok and YouTube.
@FIAFormulaE #ABBFormulaE
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