In Dave Mathers’ Monday Motormouth Blog for November 22, 2021, Dave comments on the demise of Jukasa Motor Speedway, the F1 race in Qatar, the World Rally Championship, IMSA, NHRA news, and more.
FIRST, THE BAD NEWS: As anyone who follows Canadian stock car racing already knows, Jukasa Motor Speedway has announced that it is closed for good.
The long and glorious history of this famed facility is well known all over Canada and the United States.
The late Bob Slack and his wife did an amazing job of promoting and improving the track. Ken Hill and Jerry Montour did a great job in bringing the track up to even higher standards. Unfortunately Ken’s death seems to have precipitated the tragic shut down. It goes without saying that many, many people will miss the track.
FORMULA ONE: F1 was in Qatar. Where to start? It would appear that the F1 stewards couldn’t even organize a drinking party at the Legion on a Saturday night. They ruin almost every race for the fans with those magic words ‘and the stewards are reviewing……’ whatever the perceived indiscretion of the day happens to be.
This time, they penalized Max Verstappen five starting spots for ignoring a yellow. BUT that very yellow was put out, apparently, by a corner worker who put it out for a slowing car on the track but, not, and again apparently, NOT at the direction of Race Control.
The video clearly shows Max coming to the line with NO yellow lights displayed. But Wait, There’s More!! After Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner expressed his displeasure pre-race about the ruling both he and team consultant Helmut Marko were ordered to ‘visit’ the stewards’ office after the race.
Apparently, Horner’s words breached two parts of the International Sporting Code – those standards of conduct that competitors are expected to follow. The bigger question here – what about standards of conduct for the FIA? Just asking.
And here I thought that the stewards were just going to focus on their favourite topic – track limits!!
Anyway, Lewis Hamilton started from the pole and basically ran away with it winning by a wide margin. Max was supposed to start second, but the penalty moved him to seventh.
Valtteri Bottas was due to start third but he also had a penalty of three spots so he started sixth.
Max quickly marched through the field up to second but couldn’t catch Lewis. Bottas had tire problems and ended up dead last.
However, several other drivers suffered tire problems with the left-front being the problem on most of them. Lewis now sits only eight points back of Max with Bottas third 140.5 points back of Lewis. The Constructor’s Championship is getting really close with Mercedes only five points up on Red Bull and Ferrari 49 back of the leader.
With just two races left, this will go down to the wire. They race at Saudi Arabia (assuming the track is going to be ready) on December 5 and then Abu Dhabi December 12; the last race of the year.
In other F1 news, tickets for the Montreal GP will go on sale. Canadian fans were relieved to see the race returning after being sidelined for two years due to the pandemic.
WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP: Full disclosure, I did not see their actual race at Monza but I have to comment. Having been to that track and marvelling at the awesome banking (it makes Bristol look almost flat!!) on the old oval I was amazed that the rally cars actually went up onto the banking!! AWESOME!!
Sebastien Ogier, the longtime rally runner, won the Rally Monza race in a Toyota Yaris.
IMSA: As promised last week, here are the final points standings. I’m going to start with the BEST news of all the classes!! Pfaff Motorsports drivers Laurens Vanthoor and Zacharie Robichon won the GTDaytona class a major accomplishment for that team.
Bryan Sellers and Madison Snow grabbed second with Roma DeAngelis and Ross Gunn were third.
Pipo Derani and Felipe Nasr tied for the win in Daytona Prototype class while Filipe Albuquerque and Ricky Taylor tied for second.
Harry Tincknell and Oliver Jarvis tied for third. Ben Keating and Mikkel Jensen won DP2 over Tristan Nunez and Steven Thomas took second while Gabriel Aubry and John Farano were third.
Gar Robinson won DP3 over Jonathan Bennett and Colin Braun in second with Jim Cox and Dylan Murry third. Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor won GTLM over Tommy Milner and Nick Tandy in second while Cooper MacNeil finished third.
NASCAR CUP SERIES: The next race for the Cup series is at, wait for it, the Los Angeles Coliseum. It will be the ‘Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum’, a non-points race on the tight little one quarter mile track.
The track could fit into the grassy area between the track and pit road at Daytona International Speedway!! The points racing will begin in earnest at Daytona on Sunday, February 20 at 2.30 P.M. I can hardly wait!!
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES: Their next race, the first for the 2022 season, will be at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, February 19, 2022 at 5 P.M.
NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCKS: The next race for the series is at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, February 18, 2022 at 7.30 P.M., the first race on next year’s schedule.
NHRA: They return to action on the weekend of February 20 for the Winternationals at Pomona. Was shocked to see Ron Capps announce that he would join the exodus from the Don Schumacher Racing team he’s raced for, for the past 17 year. Capps plans to announce his new plans at the PRI show, in Indy, in early December.
Until next week!!