Red Bull GRC: Scott Speed, Andretti Autosport are golden at X Games Austin (VIDEO)

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Scott Speed and Andretti Autosport are now 2-for-2 in Red Bull Global Rallycross this season after the ex-Formula One and NASCAR driver captured the X Games gold medal at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

Speed, driving the No. 77 7Up Volkswagen Polo, ran the table in today’s elimination rounds, winning his quarterfinal and semifinal heats before beating skateboarding icon Bucky Lasek and another F1/NASCAR veteran, Nelson Piquet Jr., in the final.

“This thing is so fast – it’s always so fast,” Speed told ESPN. “It’s just a matter for us to stay clean and if we can get out in front, they can’t catch us…Our car is so good, it makes my job easy.”

Speed opened the season with a win on NBC last month at Top Gear Festival Barbados.

In today’s final, Speed won the holeshot heading into the first turn with Liam Doran and Piquet following in second and third. Those front three plus Austin Dyne took the joker on the opening lap of the 10-lap final, but on Lap 3, Dyne sustained contact with Patrik Sandell in the hairpin when the latter tried to pass him on the inside.

Dyne was left with a broken suspension and could not continue. That brought out a Red Flag and also led to Race Control barring Sandell from the remainder of the final.

Speed, Doran, Piquet and Lasek lined up again for the restart with eight laps left, but Doran ran his Citroen wide in the rush to Turn 1 and fell all the way to last.

Meanwhile, Speed earned the holeshot again and went on a relatively easy cruise to the win, while Lasek picked up the silver medal in his Subaru after Piquet earned a black flag for running the joker twice (a no-no in GRC racing).

The resulting five-second, stop-and-go penalty knocked the Brazilian down to last behind Doran, but on the final lap, Doran lost control and spun out.

As he tried to get his wounded Citroen in gear, Piquet was able to beat him to the checkered flag for the bronze medal in his Ford.

Red Bull GRC returns to action on June 22 with Volkswagen Rallycross DC at RFK Stadium in Washington, DC. NBC will air the event LIVE at 2 p.m. ET.

Ecclestone has ‘no doubts’ Monza will remain on F1 calendar

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MILAN (AP) Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone is confident the Italian Grand Prix in Monza can find the needed cash to stay on the calendar.

Ecclestone tells the Gazzetta dello Sport, “We will find the right solution – I no longer have doubts – to provide a future for the Italian GP.”

No circuit has hosted more F1 racing than Monza, but officials at the track outside Milan have had trouble producing the estimated 25 million euros ($26.6 million) per year that Ecclestone seeks to keep the race in place after the current contract expires next year.

Ecclstone says, “Things have been cleared up and there is only one go between, (Angelo) Sticchi Damiani, the president of the Italian Automobile Club.”

The Italian GP next year is scheduled for Sept. 4.

Alternative engine solution rejected by F1 Commission

Nico Rosberg

Plans to introduce a new alternative, cheaper engine into Formula 1 for 2017 – hypothetically a 2.2-liter V6 similar to what is seen in IndyCar – will at least temporarily go on the backburner.

The F1 Commission has rejected the so called “alternative engine solution,” where several companies submitted proposals to be that alternative supplier.

“The F1 Commission voted not to pursue this option at this stage — however, it may be reassessed after the Power Unit manufacturers have presented their proposal to the Strategy Group,” the FIA said on Wednesday.

“The parties involved have agreed on a course to address several key areas relating to Power Unit supply in Formula One,” the statement added.

Meanwhile the statement outlined four things the current manufacturers – Mercedes, Ferrari, Renault and Honda – would be tasked with improving on the current 1.6-liter formula:

Those are:

  • a guarantee of supply to teams
  • the need to reduce the engines’ cost
  • simplification of the specification
  • “improved noise”

Further meetings between the manufacturers and the governing body are scheduled, including one this weekend at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix season finale.

As F1 heads into the final weekend of the season, political/paddock items such as Red Bull and Toro Rosso’s respective power unit futures, whether Renault’s takeover of Lotus will finally become official and what will happen with Manor’s team leadership stake – this marks Graeme Lowdon and John Booth’s final weekends although ex-McLaren man Dave Ryan has been hired as the team’s new racing director – are among the talking points.

Stoffel Vandoorne’s Super Formula test hampered by engine woes

Jenson Button, Fernando Alonso, Stoffel Vandoorne
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You couldn’t make this stuff up.

Dominant GP2 Series champion Stoffel Vandoorne had his first go in a Super Formula car at Suzuka on Wednesday, but the engine woes that have hampered his Formula 1 team’s efforts (McLaren) all season appear to be equal opportunity woes.

Vandoorne only completed a limited day of running due to technical issues; naturally, and in an unfortunate coincidence, the Super Formula cars also have Honda power.

The Belgian is now en route from Japan to Abu Dhabi, where this weekend’s final round of the GP2 season will be held alongside the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

FIA Formula E to remain at Battersea Park following vote

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Wandsworth Council’s Community Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee voted seven to four late Tuesday night, in favor of retaining the FIA Formula E event in Battersea Park.

This will see the London ePrix – the season finale for the electric open-wheel championship – continue at the site for at least the next two seasons.

The 2016 race will run July 2-3, to avoid a direct head-to-head clash with the British Grand Prix a week later in Silverstone.

Battersea Park’s race faced local opposition in recent weeks, which put the race under threat.