F1 Grand Prix of Bahrain - Previews

Grosjean has faith in Lotus revival after poor start

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Romain Grosjean has once again affirmed his faith in the entire Lotus team despite a disastrous start to the season that has seen the one-time front-runners fail to score any points in the opening two rounds of the 2014 F1 season.

After a series of financial crises last year, the team finally found some stability by securing finance from Pastor Maldonado’s backers, PDVSA, and downsizing the workforce at Enstone by 20%.

However, the E22 car was not ready for the first test in Jerez, and Lotus has been on the back foot ever since. A double retirement in Australia came as little surprise, but Grosjean rallied to finish 11th in Malaysia, and the Frenchman was pleased with this result after such a tough start to the year.

“I won’t say exactly everything I could say inside my helmet sometimes,” Grosjean joked. “I think it was good for all the guys that we could finish the Malaysian Grand Prix. Of course it was not the way you would like to see when you start a Grand Prix but at the moment that’s where we are plus we were not that far from the points.”

Grosjean refused to give any kind of time scale for when the team will be back up in the points and fighting for race wins as per 2013, but he has total faith in the team at Enstone.

“I don’t know, to be honest,” he said when asked how long it would take for the team to bounce back. “I know that we still have in our genes the winning spirit and we can still fight back.

“Of course, when you start the season with everything in the right direction it’s easier to move forward but at the moment we’ve had some issues, we’ve solved most of them, hopefully no more coming, then we can go from there.

“Renault is well aware that the power unit needs to improve a little bit compared to certain other manufacturers, but I think it’s going to be good and we can work on our car.”

Grosjean has finished on the podium in the last two Bahrain Grands Prix, but he will be hard-pressed to emulate this result on Sunday. You can watch the race live on NBCSN from 10:30am ET on Sunday.

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