GM starts construction on new race engine facility outside Detroit

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General Motors has begun work on a brand-new facility that will be home to development of race engines for its teams in NASCAR, IndyCar, the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, and other series.

The new GM Performance and Racing Center, which will be situated in Pontiac, Michigan and is scheduled to be fully completed in 2016, will also house a new electric motor laboratory and gear center.

“The GM Performance and Racing Center will serve as a resource to help our race teams and drivers continue to win races and championships,” said Jim Campbell, U.S. vice president, Performance Vehicles and Motorsports, in a statement.

“It will also help advance technical sharing between racing and production engine programs.”

The facility is part of a major investment from GM to create a centralized powertrain engineering center in Pontiac.

The 138,000-square-foot addition is expected to bring 400 jobs there, and its 100 racing engineers currently based in Wixom, Michigan are expected to move into the Pontiac campus by mid-2015.

“The GM Performance and Racing Center…will continue to develop some of the world’s winningest race engines for Chevrolet and Cadillac,” said Steve Kiefer, vice president of GM Global Powertrain, in his own thoughts.

“Connecting our race engineers with our global powertrain engineering teams will improve our customers’ powertrains in terms of efficiency, reliability and durability. The center will also provide exciting career opportunities for our engineering organization.”

Verstappen doesn’t want F1 season to end after recent run of form

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Max Verstappen says he is not ready for the 2017 Formula 1 season to come to an end after enjoying a run of strong form through the closing stages of the campaign.

Verstappen endured a rocky run of form through to the end of the European season that saw him suffer a number of reliability issues and score just a single podium finish, taking third in China back in April.

However, the Dutchman has rallied to score more points than any other driver in the last five races, including victories in Malaysia and Mexico, as well as a podium finish in Japan.

Verstappen heads into next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix chasing a third win of the year to sign off, but joked he does not want the season to end just as he’s got into a good groove.

“We will, of course, try and end the season with a strong result in Abu Dhabi,” Verstappen said. “Last year was actually quite a good race after skipping a pit stop following a spin at Turn 1, it was hard to manage the tires to the end of the race but we did it and finished fourth.

“I would say that my favorite part of the track is at Turns 2 and 3, the fast left, right. It’s also very cool driving underneath the hotel and racing in the darkness with all the lights.

“The final sector at Yas Marina is actually quite technical so you have to be really precise there, but it should also be our strongest part of the track.

“There are quite a few overtaking opportunities to make the race interesting, before the long straight at the hairpin and then at the end of the straight under braking for the next chicane section.

“Abu Dhabi is the last race on the calendar, but I don’t actually want the season to end. I’m really fired up at the moment and I just want to keep going.

“The nice thing will be to spend some time with friends and family over the winter break and then I will look ahead to January and get back into training before it all starts again.”