F1 Testing in Jerez - Day Two

Martini planned, Genworth confirmed as Williams partners

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Williams appears set to bring Martini and its legendary red, white and blue colors back to Formula One, per an Autosport report. The deal is not yet finalized and the livery, more importantly, still yet to be revealed before the March 16 season opener in Australia.

Martini had a heavy presence in F1 in the 1970s with the Tecno, Brabham and Lotus organizations, but has its only appearance in recent years was in a minor role with Ferrari that began in 2006.

The team did announce one new partnership, with global lifestyle protection insurer Genworth signing up earlier this week. Genworth’s logo will appear on the rear wing endplates of the FW36.

“I’m delighted to welcome a brand of Genworth’s pedigree to the team for the 2014 season and beyond,” Sir Frank Williams said in a team release. “We share a number of similar values such as ensuring excellence and integrity in everything we do and a truly global footprint. We’re looking forward to working in close collaboration to help them maximise the benefits that come from a close association with Williams and Formula One.”

It is yet to be determined whether Williams will be in full livery at the Bahrain test next week, or if it will continue to run in the testing dark blue as at Jerez.

NHRA: New book a celebration of life, love and drag racing

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The overpowering smell from nitromethane that powers Top Fuel dragsters and Funny Cars in the National Hot Rod Association oftentimes brings fans to tears after getting a whiff of the stuff.

Now there’s a new inspirational book that will also bring tears to the eyes of die-hard drag racing fans.

Veteran crew chief Jim Oberhofer has released “Top Fuel For Life, Life Lessons From A Crew Chief,” a touching homage to both his late wife and persevering and overcoming adversity in the highly competitive world of NHRA drag racing.

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Oberhofer wears a number of hats as vice president of one of the sport’s most veteran and successful teams, Kalitta Motorsports, including serving as crew chief for Top Fuel driver Doug Kalitta’s dragster.

Oberhofer relates a number of stories about overcoming adversity in the book, but none more touching than how he watched his beloved wife “Tammy O” lose a long and painful battle to stage 4 metastatic lung cancer.

While Oberhofer has spent his life using wrenches and tools working on 10,000-horsepower engines, his new book shows that he is also a very gifted writer.

Known in the sport as “Jim O,” Oberhofer describes the fight his wife went through in gritty and descriptive prose, but with a foundation built upon what the love of his life meant to him – and continues to mean to him more than two years since she passed away.

“When you take a long hard look at your life, I guarantee you that being a winner has little to do with crossing the finish line,” Oberhofer said. “After many mistakes and a whole lot of heartache, I learned that happiness comes from a deeper, simpler place. That’s the big win.”

“Top Fuel For Life” is available on Amazon for $19.95.

Follow @JerryBonkowski

Report: Ecclestone believes F1 could be sold by year’s end

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Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone on Tuesday said the racing series is up for sale and has as many as three potential buyers.

Ecclestone told The Associated Press that a deal could still be struck by year’s end.

“I think so, maybe this year,” Ecclestone said. “There are three people mentioned to buy. So it’s a case of whether CVC or Mr. Mackenzie wants to sell.”

Ecclestone was referring to F1’s largest and controlling shareholder, CVC Capital Partners co-chairman Donald Mackenzie.

But even if F1 is sold, the 84-year-old Eccelstone doesn’t plan on going anywhere.

“The people that I’ve spoken to … have asked me if I would stay,” Ecclestone told AP.

Follow @JerryBonkowski