A pair of penalties have changed the official results of last weekend’s GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in California.
Title contender Alessandro Balzan and co-driver Leh Keen, both of whom wheeled the No. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia (pictured, from March) last Sunday, have been elevated to a third-place finish after originally being scored fifth.
That’s because the original third-place car, the No. 31 Marsh Racing Corvette of Eric Curran and Boris Said, has been demoted to eighth in class. Additionally, the No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche of Patrick Long and Patrick Lindsey has been demoted from fourth to ninth in class.
“Every team deserves a fair chance to compete and the process that maintains this was appropriately implemented by officials,” said Scuderia Corsa principal Giacomo Mattioli in a team release.
“We ran a fantastic race on Sunday and are now focused on getting ready to go for the championship at our last race of the season at Lime Rock.”
Balzan sustained damage to his car’s rear diffuser and exhaust system in separate incidents during the closing moments of the Continental Tire Sports Car Festival.
The revised results also have an impact on the hotly-contested GT championship race. With the podium finish, Balzan has now moved within four points, 313-309, of the class-leading No. 44 Magnus Racing Porsche of John Potter and Andy Lally, who won their first race of 2013 at Laguna Seca.
Lally touched on the subject, as well as Jeff Gordon’s inclusion in the Chase for the Sprint Cup, on Twitter. One could argue he was a bit surprised at both:
Lewis Hamilton and Sebastien Vettel are the two most decorated drivers currently on the Formula 1 grid, with seven World Championships between them (four for Vettel, and three for Hamilton).
However, their paths have rarely crossed on the track, and only in 2010 did both drivers battle each for a World Championship in the same year. They also battled Fernando Alonso and Mark Webber that year, with Vettel emerging on top to claim his first World Championship.
However, the 2017 season sees Hamilton and Vettel in the two best cars on the grid, and they have gone head-to-head multiple times already this year, with each claiming two victories through the first five races. Currently, Vettel leads Hamilton 104-98 in the world championship, and the two men are developing a strong on-track rivalry.
Monaco Grand Prix coverage continues with FP3 and qualifying on Saturday. Full times are linked here.
In Friday’s NASCAR AMERICA Motorsports Special on NBCSN, we take you behind the scenes during F1 superstar Fernando Alonso’s qualifying runs for the Indy 500, including when he was on the pole for a brief period. He’ll eventually start fifth.
On Friday’s NASCAR AMERICA Motorsports Special on NBCSN, Parker Kligerman and his backseat driver, Kyle Petty, took to the iRacing simulator to make a mock run around Indianapolis Motor Speedway in preparation for Sunday’s Indianapolis 500.
They look at the challenges of IMS, as well as the challenges two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso will face in the first oval track race in his illustrious career. Alonso is among the favorites in the race and will take the green flag from the middle of Row 2 (fifth position).
Check out the above video.
Sunday is the biggest day of the year in motorsports, starting in the morning with Formula 1’s legendary Monaco Grand Prix.
Then, at Noon ET, it’s the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The final part of the tripleheader of racing is NASCAR’s longest race of the season, the 400-lap, 600-mile Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Newly-named NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2018 inductee Ken Squier gives you a great primer for what promises to be a memorable day around the world (see video above).