We have seen the future, and it is WHAT? NASCAR will be showing what could possibly be their new electric Cup Car Sunday at the Busch Lite Clash in the L.A. Coliseum.
Many laps have been put on the ‘car’ and it appears to be a viable vehicle going forward. What is it you ask? How about an SUV with a generic body, grille, etc?
Next time you visit the local mall, take a look around and see what the majority of the vehicles are parked there. SUVs!! By golly Ollie, I think they’ve got it!!! I would suggest that NASCAR knows what they are doing but nevertheless let the invective commence!! LOL
NASCAR Cup Series: Their first race is the Busch Light Clash at the L.A. Coliseum Feb. 4
NASCAR Xfinity Series: Their first race is Daytona, Saturday, Feb. 17.
NASCAR Craftsman Trucks: Their first race is Daytona, Friday, February 16.
BIG news from Formula One: Sir Lewis Hamilton – the seven-time F1 World Champion – stunned the sporting world by announcing that he’s moving to Ferrari in 2025!!! He will still drive for Mercedes in 2024. Him heading to the legendary Italian team explains the LONG lineup of drivers outside Mercedes F1 headquarters in Brackley!! Formula One’s first race of the season is in Bahrain on Sunday, March 2.
IndyCar: Their first race is St. Petersburg, Sunday March 10.
IMSA the largest crowd ever for the Rolex got to see a very close, very competitive and very enjoyable 24 hours. The weather even cooperated in spite of some nasty weather approaching from the west but somehow missing the track.
No serious ‘incidents’ took place but there were plenty of ‘offs’ and single car incidents. I counted fourteen yellow flag periods and it seemed this year that the average time for cleanup was a little over twenty minutes. A lot of that can be attributed to the hybrid systems of the GTP cars which made rescue attempts wait until the green light on the car came on. It was interesting to hear the comments about just how the drivers had to exit their cars so as not to get shocked or even electrocuted. That must make for some tense moments for the safety crews.
Thirty minutes into the race the number 78 PRO Lambo got into the tires for the first yellow. Half an hour later the number 20 P2 car slid into the number 14 PRO car pushing it into the corner. At the two-hour mark, the number 11 P2 car looped it coming out of the back straight chicane. Fifteen minutes later the Pfaff McLaren got the lead in PRO.
An hour after that another P2 spun. Then fifteen minutes later the Pfaff car hit the garage with problems in the left front suspension. Video showed a very complex front hub being repaired. The car returned to the track many laps down but ran with the leaders.
An hour after that the number 33 P2 car stopped on track for another caution. At the five-hour mark (and also at the six-hour mark) two, count ‘em, two GTD cars were ahead of the GTD PRO leaders!! Quite different from prior years. At 6.40 the 33 car stopped again! At the eight hour mark the sole GTD Mustang was ahead of the two PRO Stangs!!
At 8.20 things started to look bad for the Acura of Albuquerque as it died on track. By the nine thirty mark one of the Multimatic Mustangs had the lead in PRO. At eleven twenty the number 66 Acura GTD car went off in corner five for another flag. Half an hour later the Wayne Taylor Acura GTP car had problems.
At the halfway mark the GTP leader was the Whelen Caddy # 31, P2 leader was the #52, the PRO leader was the #62 Ferrari and GTD saw the McLaren #70 in front.
At 12.50 one of the BMW GTP cars, the 24, stopped exiting the horseshoe for a flag. Half an hour late the number 01 Caddy stopped on track. At sixteen hours the #99 P2 car stopped in the horseshoe. At the nineteen-hour mark the Pfaff McLaren sadly returned to the garage. Fifteen minutes later the #33 P2 car stopped again when the body seemed to come apart on track.
Dawn broke to a hazy and gray sky, not Chamber of Commerce weather, but great for racing. With less than an hour to go the number 12 Lexus GTD car appeared to catch fire on track for what turned out to be the last caution flag.
Confusion reigned supreme at the finish as the ‘B Team’ announce team with the Murray Walker trained announcer did not get the memo that the race was ending, and their screen showed 2 laps to go. Meanwhile the ‘A Team’ announce team of Diffey, Fish and Bell over on NBC got it right. How sad was it that we only got about three hours of competent announcing on NBC and had to put up with the other ‘team’.
I must admit that the replacement announce team in the middle of the night was MUCH better than the starting lineup of announcers and they actually knew which car was which, which car was having the problems and which car(s) was(were) leading.
Adding further to the confusion the ‘official time’ of the race was 24:04:05. Confusing because the GTP cars were running laps in the 1:35 range which would indicate that maybe, just maybe, they went two laps too far? Hmmm.
At the finish in GTP the Penske Porsche of Nasr, Cameron, Campbell and Newgarden held off the closing Caddy of Derani, Aitken and Blomqvist giving Roger Penske his first Rolex win in, wait for it, over half a century (actually 55 years)! The Taylor/Deletraz/Herta/Button Acura was third.
In LMP 2 the Merriman/Dalziel/Zilisch/Rasmussen team took the win over Kurtz/Braun/ Sowery/Jakobsen and Robinson/Fraga/Burdo/Massa. Interestingly the bottom four finishers in the race were all LMP 2 entries.
GTDPRO saw the Risi Ferrari of Serra/Rigon/Pier Guidi/Calado get the win over the Porsche of Heinrich/Priaulx/Christensen and the BMW of Sellers/Snow/Verhagen/van der Linde.
GTD was won by the Mercedes of Ward/Ellis/Dontje/Morad ahead of the Ferrari of Mann/Heriau/Molina/Cozzolino and the Ferrari of Franco/Costa Balboa/Balzan/Sbirrazzuoli.
Their next race is St. Petersburg, March 10.
NHRA: Their first race is March 10 at Gainesville.
PRO Superstar Shootout: In Bradenton, February 8 – 10.
World Series of Pro Mod: Iin Bradenton, March 1 – 3.
NASCAR Canada Series: Their first race is at Mosport (CTMP), Sunday May 19.
APC Series: Their first race is at Sunset Speedway, Saturday, May 18.
Ontario Sportsman Series: Their first race is at Delaware, Friday, May 17.
Delaware Speedway: Their first race is Friday, May 10.
Ohsweken Speedway: Schedule TBA.
Flamboro Speedway: Their first race is Saturday, May 4.
Southern Ontario Motor Speedway (Buxton): The status of the track is uncertain at this time.
Grand Bend Speedway: Their first race is Saturday, June 1.
Grand Bend Dragway: Their first race is the weekend of May 19.
St. Thomas Dragway: Their first race is the weekend of May 19.
Toronto Motorama Custom Car & Motorsports Expo presented by eBay Motors: This show takes place March 8, 9 & 10 at the International Centre, across from Toronto’s Pearson Airport. On Saturday, March 9, the Fast Eddie Night of Champions will honour Canadian racing champions representing road racing, drag racing and short track racing. Over a 100 champions are expected.
Toronto Motorsports Park: TBD due to track improvements.
Dragstrip Memories: Sunday, April 14, 9 – 4, Hamilton Airport.
Shannonville Drags: Their first race is the weekend of May 5.
Any comments can be sent to Dave Mathers via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by Facebook Messenger.