Newman: Blocking a “chicken way of driving”

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Heading into this weekend’s STP Gas Booster 500 at Martinsville Speedway, defending race winner Ryan Newman has spoken out against blocking.

The Stewart Haas Racing driver’s teammate and team boss, Tony Stewart, called Joey Logano out for it after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series’ most recent race at Auto Club Speedway two weeks ago.

“If you’ve got a run on me, take it,” Newman said Tuesday in a conference call. “If I can get through the corner better than you, then we’ll race, but blocking is an IndyCar form or F1 form or an open wheel type move it seems like. It’s not to say they don’t do it in NASCAR; obviously they do, but to me it’s just a chicken way of driving and not very respectful for the guys around you.”

Newman was involved in one of the worst accidents in NASCAR in recent memory, Talladega in April 2009, when a block happened in front of him. While racing for the win, Brad Keselowski moved down on Carl Edwards, which catapulted Edwards airborne, into the catch fencing and also contacting Newman’s car in the hood.

Dale Earnhardt Jr., by contrast, said blocking is more a matter of timing, and he’d expect it at certain points in a race.

“I would expect and accept to be blocked in certain situations,” he said. “But you’ve got to give me some race track.”

 

BMW confirms IMSA, WEC GTE line-ups for 2018

BMW Motorsport
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BMW has confirmed its driver line-ups for the 2018 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and 2018/19 FIA World Endurance Championship campaigns.

In an announcement made at its end-of-year Sports Trophy event on Friday night, BMW firmed up its roster across its factory WEC team and its customer RLL Racing IMSA squad.

Two of the 2018 BMW M8 GTEs will enter the WEC next year, joining a hotly-contested GTE-Pro class that already features Ferrari, Porsche, Aston Martin and Ford.

BMW factory drivers Antonio Felix da Costa, Nick Catsburg, Augusto Farfus and Martin Tomczyk will share the two cars across the 13-month ‘super season’.

The quartet will be joined by Tom Blomqvist, Alexander Sims and Philipp Eng for the 24 Hours of Le Mans

In IMSA, the RLL Racing team will once again field Sims and John Edwards, who will be joined by the incoming Connor De Phillippi and Jesse Krohn.

BMW also confirmed on Friday night that Tom Blomqvist would see out the Formula E season with its Andretti-affiliated team, having been benched for Kamui Kobayashi in Hong Kong.