Formula DRIFT back with NBCSN for a new season

Leave a comment

When it comes to most every form of motorsport, there’s invariably a lot of zigging, zagging, drafting and drifting on race tracks from Florida to California.

And the NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) is where you’ll find a lot of all those components – especially the drifting part – as Formula DRIFT will once again be prominently featured on the network in 2014.

The seven-event Formula DRIFT Pro Championship will air a minimum of 24 times on Sundays beginning July 27, with programming including a combination of both on-track and off-track action, features, interviews and more.

This marks the sixth year the Long Beach, Calif.-based series has partnered with NBC Sports.

“We are proud to continue our relationship with NBCSN,” said Ryan Sage, Vice President and Co-Founder of Formula DRIFT. “The reach of NBCSN is phenomenal with access into 85 million homes in the US. To be able to bring our progressive sport in front of the their audience is thrilling.”

The 2014 Formula DRIFT season begins April 4-5 on the streets of Long Beach. More information, schedules and TV times can be found at www.FormulaD.com.

“We are excited to showcase a new season of Formula DRIFT here on NBCSN for our ever-growing motor-sports audience,” said Jeff Macaluso, Sr. Director of Programming at NBCSN. “The adrenaline pounding excitement is a great compliment to our line-up.”

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

Josef Newgarden wins pole for Grand Prix of Alabama

1 Comment

With time running off the clock, Josef Newgarden lapped Barber Motorsports Park with a speed of 122.773 mph to win his third career pole and first on this track in the Grand Prix of Alabama.

Newgarden was .0128 seconds faster than teammate Scott Dixon in second.

Newgarden has two previous wins at Barber. He won last year’s edition of this race after starting seventh and in 2015 from fifth.

“I didn’t know if that was going to be enough,” Newgarden said after winning the pole.

“Team Chevy has done a good job,” Newgarden said. “They’ve really given us good power this weekend – good driveability. We’re going to need some fuel mileage tomorrow, which I think we’ll have. But it’s going to get mixed up with the rain.”

Dixon’s lap of 122.750 mph was not quite enough.

“I’m sure you could pick out a number of different things on a lap when it’s that close,” Power said about what made the slight difference between him and Newgarden. “A little mistake out of 9; a little lift here or there.”

Sebastien Bourdais (122.605 mph) qualified third, with Ryan Hunter-Reay (122.159) and James Hinchliffe (121.859) rounding out the top five.

Scott Dixon was the last driver in the top six.

Fast 12

Newgarden topped this chart with a speed of 123.475 mph.

He brought Power, James Hinchcliffe, Scott Dixon, Ryan Hunter-Reay, and Sebastien Bourdais along with him to the Fast 6.

Marco Andretti (122.480), Alexander Rossi (122.216), Simon Pagenaud (122.050), Robert Wickens (122.042), Zach Veach (121.784) and Ed Jones (120.984) failed to advance.

Round 1, Group 1

Newgarden posted the fastest single lap in round one, group one of qualification for the Grand Prix of Alabama with a speed of 122.550 mph.

Hunter-Reay, Hinchcliffe, Wickens, and Andretti also advance to the fast 12.

Taking the final slot was Jones with a speed of 119.835 mph after an off-course excursion in final practice.

This was Andretti’s first advancement to the fast 12 for the first time since 2014.

Round 1, Group 2

Power had the fastest lap of 121.570 mph.

Bourdais, Veach (who is battling food poisoning-like symptoms), Rossi, and Pagenaud grabbed positions 2-4.

Scott Dixon had an uncharacteristically slow lap of 121.006, but managed to advance to the fast 12 when the session was red-flagged for an incident involving Tony Kanaan.

With three minutes remaining, Kanaan spun into the tire barriers while leaving pit road. Since he brought out the red flag, he lost his qualification time of 119.996 mph.

Takuma Sato had slipped off-course midway through the session and posted only the Ninth-fastest speed of 120.789 mph.