Updated: Brad Keselowski will be without crew chief Paul Wolfe for Sunday’s Sprint Cup race in Phoenix

1 Comment

UPDATE: Paul and Aleia Wolfe welcomed their first child, Caden Paul Wolfe, early Sunday morning. Brad Keselowski tweeted “Newest Member of the Wolfe Pack! Caden Paul Wolfe” and included this photo (right). The new parents and baby are doing well. Wolfe will rejoin Keselowski this week for next Sunday’s Sprint Cup race in Las Vegas.

One day after helping his driver, Brad Keselowski, earn the pole for Sunday’s The Profit on CNBC 500 with a record-setting performance, crew chief Paul Wolfe will not be atop Keselowski’s pit box for the race itself.

Wolfe flew back on Keselowski’s jet to his North Carolina home early Saturday to be with wife Aleia for the birth of the couple’s first child.

Keselowski tweeted Saturday morning, “Gonna miss having my crew chief Paul Wolfe this Sunday. Best wishes to him and his wife Aleah on the pending birth of their first child.”

Wolfe has been Keselowski’s crew chief since 2011 and was atop the pit box when Keselowski won his first Sprint Cup championship (and the first for team owner Roger Penske) in 2012. Nine of Keselowski’s 10 career Sprint Cup victories have been with Wolfe as his crew chief.

It’s expected that Brian Wilson, team engineer for Keselowski’s No. 2 Ford Fusion, will split crew chief duties with Greg Erwin in Sunday’s race.

Wilson will likely make calls for adjustments on the car, while Erwin, who was Sam Hornish Jr.’s crew chief last season and formerly was Greg Biffle’s crew chief in the Sprint Cup Series, will make calls on strategy.

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

Rebellion confirms LMP1 return, all-star line-up for WEC super season

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Rebellion Racing has confirmed it will return to the LMP1 class of the FIA World Endurance Championship for the 2018/19 ‘super season’ with an all-star line-up featuring Le Mans winners Neel Jani and Andre Lotterer.

Rebellion raced in LMP1 as a privateer between 2009 and 2016 before stepping down to LMP2 for the most recent season, capturing the class titles at the first attempt.

Following a push from the WEC and Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) to make LMP1 more appealing to privateer teams, Rebellion announced on Wednesday it would return to the premier class for the 2018/19 season with a two-car effort.

WEC LMP2 champion Bruno Senna will return with Rebellion next year, as will Mathias Beche, with the pair set to be joined by four new faces.

The most notable arrivals are Porsche factory drivers Lotterer and Jani, both of whom were left without an LMP1 drive following the closure of the German manufacturer’s program at the end of the season.

American racer Gustavo Menezes will also join Rebellion, stepping up after two years in LMP2, while outstanding 2017 rookie Thomas Laurent completes the Swiss team’s line-up.

“I am looking forward to coming back where my endurance career started nine years ago,” said Jani.

“Rebellion Racing played a huge role in my career and also helped me become a factory driver for Porsche. When Porsche stopped in LMP1, it was clear for me that I wanted to race again for Rebellion.

“With the new regulations, I hope we can reach the overall podium at Le Mans and with a bit of luck, maybe we can even grab some wins during the super season of WEC.”

“I am very happy to join the champion Rebellion team,” added three-time Le Mans winner Lotterer.

“The LMP1 project is very exciting and to be able to go on with the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the FIA WEC challenge is something I did not want to miss.

“I am motivated and looking forward to have a great time with great people there.”