Cup drivers expecting speeds to go up at Kansas

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If Sprint Cup drivers’ comments during today’s Goodyear tire test at Kansas Speedway are an indication, we can expect to see track records fall next month on the 1.5-mile oval.

More than a dozen Sprint Cup teams were represented in the test, with Goodyear allowing each team to field one car. As reported earlier by NBCSN contributor and USA Today’s Nate Ryan, the test was designed to confirm the tire manufacturer’s choice for the Kansas night race on May 10 – the 11th race of the 2014 season.

“The speeds are going to increase,” Brian Vickers said to reporters at the track. “What we’re working on today is to come up with a great tire to provide great racing. Goodyear is always in constant pursuit of that.

“Sometimes we nail it, sometimes we miss a little bit. But for night racing, speeds typically increase, and that always presents extra challenges.”

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. also said that he expects the speeds to go up, but especially hopes that the racing groove will continue to grow.

“It seemed like the groove gets more spread out through the corners, and the winter this year looks like it’s aged it pretty quick,” he said. “So it’s a good thing. Hopefully, we can pick out the right tires today so we can have some good racing when we come back.”

Kevin Harvick

Rodney Childers, Kevin Harvick’s crew chief

Justin Allgaier

source:

Michael Annett

Hartley’s F1 grid penalty streak continues in Abu Dhabi

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Brendon Hartley’s record of receiving a grid penalty at every Formula 1 race he has started is set to continue in Abu Dhabi this weekend after Toro Rosso was forced to change part of his Renault power unit following the last race in Brazil.

Since making his F1 debut at the United States Grand Prix last month, Hartley has faced a grid drop at all three races he has started so far amid ongoing reliability difficulties for power unit supplier Renault.

After being forced to retire from the last race in Brazil two weeks ago due to an engine issue, Hartley has received a 10-place grid penalty for Abu Dhabi after it was confirmed Toro Rosso had changed the MGU-H on his power unit.

Hartley is yet to score any points in F1, having retired from two of his three races so far to make his debut run to P13 in Austin his best result to date.

The Toro Rosso driver finished 20th in FP1 and 19th in FP2 during Friday’s practice sessions in Abu Dhabi as he continued to get to grips with the Yas Marina Circuit.