Ownership transfer of Iowa Speedway approved by local officials

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The Des Moines Register is reporting that the Newton (Iowa) City Council has approved the transfer of ownership for the 7/8-mile Iowa Speedway from the U.S. Motorsports Corporation to Iowa Speedway, LLC. However, the major figures behind the track’s new ownership group have still not yet been revealed to the public.

“[We’re] fully aware of who the new entity is,” Newton mayor Mike Hansen said during today’s Council meeting according to the Register’s Bryce Miller. “And we’re extremely pleased…There will be an announcement shortly.”

The transfer involves multiple deals, include one for development on the land that Iowa Speedway sits on and a lease agreement with a nearby airport.

As for who could be the new mystery owners, it may be easier to figure out who wouldn’t be on that list at this point in time. To that end, Dustin Long of Motor Racing Network is reporting that a spokesperson for International Speedway Corporation (which owns 12 NASCAR facilities) has said they’re not involved with the Iowa purchase.

As for the other major NASCAR track conglomerate, Speedway Motorsports, Inc. (which owns 8 NASCAR facilities), Long writes that one of their spokespeople declined to comment altogether on the matter.

Daniel Ricciardo would relish being Lewis Hamilton’s teammate

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BAKU, Azerbaijan (AP) — Daniel Ricciardo says he would relish the challenge of having Lewis Hamilton as his teammate if he joins Mercedes next year.

Ricciardo is out of contract at Red Bull at the end of the season and expressed interest in joining teams like Mercedes or Ferrari to help him challenge for the championship.

The Australian says he would “love to obviously be challenged against the best and Lewis is obviously up there.”

He adds: “I don’t want to say it’s just Lewis I’m looking for but that would be a good challenge.”

Ricciardo says he won’t accept a faster car if it means playing second fiddle to an established star.

He says “there’s always been really good clarity and fairness (at Red Bull) … and I would expect that environment everywhere.”