In one of Tuesday’s segments on NASCAR AMERICA, Jeff Burton and former crew chief Frank Stoddard talk about fans enjoying when racers show emotion, including the Marcos Ambrose and Casey Mears altercation after this past Saturday’s Sprint Cup race at Richmond International Raceway.
If you want to relive the excitement of the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series championship battle between Simon Pagenaud and Will Power, make sure to tune in tonight at 7 p.m. ET to IndyCar Chronicles on NBCSN.
“IndyCar Chronicles: Simon Pagenaud” is the final episode of this year’s show and features interviews with the two Team Penske teammates as they break down before, during and after the season-ending GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma.
Pagenaud dominated the season, winning five of the series’ 16 races, and put a bow on his first-ever IndyCar championship by winning the season finale at the picturesque road course north of San Francisco.
Power, who was seeking his second IndyCar championship (in three seasons), missed the first race of the season due to a health issue, but still bounced back to win four races in the season and was Pagenaud’s primary challenger heading to Sonoma.
Unfortunately for Power, a mechanical issue that his car suffered in the race paved the way for Pagenaud to win both the event and the championship.
Check out the video above for a two-minute preview of tonight’s show.
Previous editions of IndyCar Chronicles can also be viewed on YouTube.
So, Simon Pagenaud DID have an extra advantage when he won his first Verizon IndyCar Series championship on Sept. 18.
Pagenaud had The Force with him – no, we’re not talking about NHRA legend John Force – but rather The Force from Star Wars.
Our friends at IndyCar.com revealed in a story Wednesday that Pagenaud was part of a Verizon-sponsored advertisement for the popular “The Star Wars Show” on YouTube.
Show hosts Andi Gutierrez and Peter Townley tried to draw a connection between IndyCar racing and the popular Star Wars movie franchise.
“Star Wars is all about things going fast, spaceships (and) pod racers,” Townley said.
Added Gutierrez, “Right, it’s a natural connection.”
They interviewed Pagenaud at Sonoma Raceway, where the French driver would go on to win the championship later that weekend.
“I love this racetrack because it’s very difficult to get right,” Pagenaud said. “It’s quite slippery. You might experience up to 4Gs. Unleash the beast inside of you – and use The Force.”
See, we told you Pagenaud had an extra advantage.
It’s not surprising that Sonoma Raceway caught the attention of the show, given that George Lucas’ famed Skywalker Ranch is only about 20 miles from the racetrack.
Speaking of which, in one of the strangest Star Wars trivia contests we’ve ever heard of, both Townley and Gutierrez were peppered with questions about the film series while they “toured” the 2.385-mile racetrack at speeds of around 110 mph.
In addition to giving the answers, there was quite a bit of screaming from the hosts during the ride, with IndyCar driver Gabby Chaves and Indy Lights pilot Zach Veach serving as chauffeurs in the two-seat INDYCAR Experience car.
Who knows, maybe the next Star Wars film may include Indy cars in it instead of pod racers or TIE fighters. And instead of a lightsaber, maybe they could use the buttons on an IndyCar steering wheel to shoot all the menaces of The Empire.
The planned Formula E races in New York City and Montreal have swapped dates on a revised calendar for the all-electric series’ third season issued by the FIA on Wednesday.
On the first calendar issued by Formula E over the London ePrix weekend in July, Montreal was slated for July 15-16 with New York set on July 29-30.
The New York race was officially launched last week, but no date was set amid ongoing discussions regarding its best placement.
Following a meeting of the World Motor Sport Council this week, a revised calendar for season three has been revealed with New York moving to the July 15-16 weekend.
Montreal now becomes the season finale on July 29-30, with both races remaining double headers and subject to the track being homologated.
The calendar also sees the removal of the two ‘TBA’ rounds, understood to be Singapore and London, leaving a 12-race calendar set for season three.
The new campaign starts in Hong Kong on October 9.
2016/17 Formula E calendar
1. Hong Kong – October 9
2. Marrakesh – November 12
3. Buenos Aires – February 18
4. Mexico City – April 1
5. Monaco – May 13
6. Paris – May 20
7. Berlin – June 10
8. Brussels – July 1
9. New York – July 15
10. New York – July 16
11. Montreal – July 29
12. Montreal – July 30
The FIA has confirmed a new wet start procedure for Formula 1 from the 2017 season, as approved by the World Motor Sport Council at its meeting this week.
Following criticism of races starting behind the safety car in heavy rain that denied fans the chance to see a proper standing start, the FIA will tweak the sporting regulations accordingly.
“A new procedure regarding wet weather starts was accepted,” a statement from the FIA reads.
“From 2017, if a safety car is deemed to be required for the beginning of a race due to wet weather, a normal standing start will occur once the track is deemed safe to race.
“The process will see the safety car return to the pit lane and the cars assemble on the grid for the start.”
The change will be in force from next year’s season-opening Australian Grand Prix on March 26, as confirmed on the provisional calendar also announced by the FIA on Wednesday.
Other changes approved by the WMSC at its meeting include a relaxing of the ban on helmet designs, an end to stockpiling of power unit components and a standard issue of tires for the early part of the season.
“Drivers must continue to present their helmets in substantially the same livery at every event of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship for easy recognition of the driver in the car,” the FIA statement reads.
“However a driver will now be allowed one event (such as a home race) for a special livery (at the driver’s choice). Drivers will also be allowed to change their helmet liveries if changing teams during the season.
“During any single event, if a driver introduces more than one of a power unit element that is subject to penalty, only the last element fitted may be used at subsequent events without further penalty. This is to prevent the stockpiling of spare power unit elements.
“For the first five events of the 2017 Championship season only, the normal team selection procedure for tires will not be used as the deadline occurs before pre-season testing.
“For these events the supplier will allocate two sets of the hardest compound specification, four sets of the medium compound specification and seven sets of the softest compound specification to each driver.”