German publication Auto Motor und Sport reported Wednesday that PDVSA support of Williams driver Pastor Maldonado will continue for the immediate future.
Maldonado’s career has been heavily supported by PDVSA and the Venezuelan government. President Hugo Chavez passed away Tuesday at age 58.
A Williams source said to its correspondent, “The (PDVSA) contract is watertight and will continue even after the death of Chavez.”
PDVSA is the largest sponsor at Williams, which has opted to promote its reserve driver Valtteri Bottas to its second race seat for 2013. The team had Bruno Senna in that seat in 2012; Senna had some Brazilian financial support behind him.
Other series in the U.S. such as IndyCar and the two sports car racing championships (GRAND-AM and ALMS) have some drivers who also have Venezuelan support of their racing efforts. Nelson Canache won his class in GRAND-AM’s Rolex 24 at Daytona race in January, the first Venezuelan driver to do so in the 51-year history of the event.
Webb and Tomac won the last four championships with two apiece in alternating years, but they were not one another’s primary rival for most of those seasons. On the average, however, the past four years show an incredible similarity with average points earned of 21.0 for Webb and 21.3 for Tomac. With five wins so far this season, Tomac (23 wins) leads Webb (19) in victories but Webb (43) edges Tomac (41) in podium finishes during this span.
Sexton still has a lot to say and after winning last week in Detroit, he is speaking up. The Supercross numbers are against him entering Seattle, however, because a points’ deficit this large after Round 10 has been erased only once. In 1983 David Bailey was 47 points behind Bob Hannah, and like Sexton he was also in third place. Bailey took the points’ lead with one race remaining.
The seven points Sexton was penalized last week for jumping in a red cross flag section in Detroit could prove extremely costly.
In fact, it has been a series of mistakes that has cost Sexton the most. In the last two weeks, he lost 10 points with a 10th-place finish to go with his penalty. Erase those, and all three riders hold their fate in their hands.
Plessinger’s heartbreak in Detroit is still fresh, but the upside of his run is that was his best of the season and could turn his fortunes around. Prior to that race, he led only seven laps in three mains. He was up front for 20 laps in Detroit with five of those being the fastest on the track.
Last week’s win by Hunter Lawrence tied him with his brother Jett Lawrence for 17th on the all-time wins’ list. With the focus shifting to 250 West for the next two rounds, Jett has a great opportunity to pull back ahead. The real test will be at the first East / West Showdown in East Rutherford, New Jersey on April 22.
Last Five Seattle Winners
450s 2022: Eli Tomac
2019: Marvin Musquin
2018: Eli Tomac
2017: Marvin Musquin
2014: Ryan Villopoto