Colin Braun at DIS (ALMS/Ford)

Braun, Ford, set fastest laps at Daytona with EcoBoost DP

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Ford’s new EcoBoost 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 in a Daytona Prototype set the fastest laps ever turned at Daytona International Speedway on Wednesday, in the hands of driver Colin Braun.

Braun, one of sports car racing’s top talents and a full-time driver for CORE autosport in the American Le Mans Series, set single lap (222.971 mph), 10-kilometer from standing start (202.438) and 10-mile from standing start (210.018) records at Daytona. All were subject to homologation by the FIA.

The previous fastest single lap set on the DIS 2.5-mile oval was a qualifying lap by Bill Elliott in 1987, 210.364 mph. That, though, was held on an official weekend of competition.

Here are some other speed records achieved in motorsports over the years, and additional notes regarding DPs at Daytona:

The DPs that run at Daytona race on the 3.56-mile road course for the Rolex 24 at Daytona, not on the oval. So from that standpoint you’re never going to see a one-lap speed by a DP anywhere near Braun’s lap.

Secondly, none of the marks set are a closed-course single lap record. That mark is held by Gil de Ferran, at 241.428 mph in a 1000-plus horsepower Reynard-Honda CART Champ Car in qualifying for the 2000 season finale at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.

Thirdly, there’s a series that exists where 300-plus mph passes happen on nearly every run, every weekend they race: NHRA Mello Yellow Drag Racing. And there, when speeds exceed 330 mph, that’s when you’re talking record speed.

And lastly, we haven’t even touched on world record speed runs to be done on the legendary salt flats of Bonneville. There, speeds have been turned north of 600 mph.

It is a credit to Braun, the Ford engineers, the Michael Shank Racing team and the Ford EcoBoost engine. They’re Daytona’s new record-setting laps turned, but not record-setting in a traditional sense.

Status targets 2016 GP2 title after GP3 exit

2015 GP2 Series Round 8.
Autodromo di Monza, Italy.
Sunday 6 September 2015.
Marlon Stockinger (PHL, Status Grand Prix) 
Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.
ref: Digital Image _G7C2088
© GP2 Series
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Status Grand Prix has set its sights on winning the 2016 GP2 Series championship following its decision to close down its GP3 team at the end of the current season.

Earlier this week, GP3 issued a statement confirming its team roster for the next three seasons that featured new entries from DAMS and Virtuosi Racing.

However, both Carlin and Status did not appear on the list, signalling that both had opted to leave GP3 at the end of 2015.

Status first entered GP3 back in 2010, but only set up a GP2 team in 2015 after taking over the old Caterham Racing operation.

This will now become the main focus for the Irish outfit, though, as explained by team boss Teddy Yip Jr. earlier this week.

“Status Grand Prix has not renewed entry into the GP3 Series from 2016 onwards in order to maximize focus on our GP2 campaign,” Yip said.

“Having finished second in the team championship in the inaugural GP3 Series, we have enjoyed six successful years in the category collecting nine race wins, 26 podium finishes and vying for numerous team and driver titles.

“We are very proud to have given opportunities and achieved success with drivers such as Robert Wickens, Antonio Felix da Costa, Alexander Sims and our current GP2 race winner, Richie Stanaway.

“We now look forward to finishing the 2015 GP2 and GP3 seasons on a high before mounting a robust GP2 title campaign in 2016.”

Both GP2 and GP3 return from a one-month break next weekend in support of the Formula 1 Russian Grand Prix.

Hakkinen: Verstappen is already “a real pro”

during a media interview at the Shanghai Grand Theatre prior to the 2015 Laureus World Sports Awards on April 15, 2015 in Shanghai, China.
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Two-time Formula 1 world champion Mika Hakkinen has heaped praise upon Toro Rosso rookie Max Verstappen, supporting his decision to ignore team orders during last month’s Singapore Grand Prix.

Verstappen only turned 18 on Wednesday, but has already made a big impression on the F1 world during his first 14 races with his aggressive driving style and mature approach to racing.

In Singapore, Verstappen was told by Toro Rosso to let faster teammate Carlos Sainz Jr. go past, but refused to give up his position and eventually beat the Spaniard to finish eighth.

Writing in his Hermes blog, Hakkinen backed Verstappen’s decision to stay ahead and praised the Dutchman for his performances so far this season.

“A driver must be alert and keep track of what is happening around him at all times,” Hakkinen wrote. “That’s what Verstappen is. He does not simply let anyone pass if it’s not for the world championship, but only a few championship points.

“Verstappen is 18 years old, but the guy’s already a real pro. Young people are developing incredibly fast nowadays, and by that I don’t mean just drivers.”

Despite having more than half a season of F1 racing under his belt, Verstappen only gained his road driver’s license on his 18th birthday, having previously been under the age limit to drive a regular car in public.