Unlucky 13 the story of Bourdais’ KVSH debut at St. Pete

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Sebastien Bourdais’ debut with KVSH Racing, in his adopted hometown of St. Petersburg, didn’t bear the fruits of success he or his new team so desired.

Bourdais’ striking black-and-green No. 11 Hydroxycut Chevrolet seemingly had a target on its back, as the “bespectacled badass” was hit like a piñata during the race after starting from an unlucky 13th – the same place he finished.

“It was a tough race. Guys from back of the grid ruined the start of the race and I lost four positions on the first lap. I also bumped into Juan Pablo Montoya when the field checked up in Turn 8,” Bourdais said of the start of his race.

He was also forced off sequence when he needed to pit on Lap 12 to replace his front wing, and needed to save fuel for the rest of the race.

The problem was exacerbated as when he was due to make his third stop, he had to stay out as a caution flew.

“When I finally pitted I was out of fuel and the car stalled, but we were still in a good position and I knew I had a fast car,” he said. “Then I was penalized for not packing up fast enough, which was pretty rough because I was packed up before the pits opened and no one was harmed.”

Bourdais praised his new crew and the car’s pace, which he deemed a “rocketship.”

“That really set us back, but we kept digging,” he said. “It was such a valiant effort by the whole team and to finish where we started is very frustrating. I really feel bad for the guys because they worked so hard and for all our sponsors who came to the race and supported us. The only positive note is that we have a fast car so our time will come.”

Bourdais has three past wins at the next round of the championship in Long Beach, all in succession from 2005 through 2007 while driving for Newman/Haas Racing in the Champ Car World Series. He has finished 17th and 15th at Long Beach the last two years driving for Dragon Racing.

Have a decent tax refund coming? Buy Ayrton Senna’s 1993 Monaco-winning car

Photos courtesy Bonhams
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Are you expecting a better than normal tax refund? Did you get a very nice bonus from your company due to the new tax cut?

Well, if you have a good chunk of change hanging around and potentially can be in Monaco on May 11, you can have a chance to bid on the 1993 McLaren-Ford MP4/8A that the late Ayrton Senna drove in — and won — that year’s Monaco Grand Prix.

We’re not just talking about any race winner. It’s also the same car Senna won his sixth Monaco Grand Prix, and the chassis bears the number six.

It’s also the same car Senna piloted to that season’s F1 championship (his third and final title before sadly being killed the next year) and is the first McLaren driven by Senna that’s ever been sold or put up for auction.

The famed Bonhams auction house is overseeing the sale of the car.

“Any Grand Prix-winning car is important, but to have the golden combination of both Senna and Monaco is a seriously rare privilege indeed,” Bonhams global head of motorsport, Mark Osborne, told The Robb Report.

“Senna and Monaco are historically intertwined, and this car represents the culmination of his achievements at the Monegasque track. This is one of the most significant Grand Prix cars ever to appear at auction, and is certainly the most significant Grand Prix car to be offered since the Fangio Mercedes-Benz W196R, which sold for a world record at auction.”

How much might you need? You might want to get a couple of friends to throw in a few bucks as well.

“We expect the car to achieve a considerable seven-figure sum,” Osborne said.

The London newspaper “The Telegraph” predicts the car will sell in the $6.1 million range.”

“This car will set the world record for a Senna car at auction,” Osborne said. “We are as certain as you can be in the auction world.”

While you won’t be able to take the car for a test drive before the auction, it’ll be ready to roar once you pay the price.

“In theory, the buyer could be racing immediately upon receipt of the cleared funds after the auction,” Osborne said. “All systems are primed and ready.”