Red Bull vindicated over tires – Horner

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Red Bull’s position on F1’s tires in 2013 has been vindicated, according to team principal Christian Horner.

The team repeatedly criticized the softer tires introduced by Pirelli at the start of the year. They were eventually changed following a series of failures at the British Grand Prix.

“Our comments about the tires were consistent all the way from Melbourne to Silverstone,” Horner told Autosport.

“Nothing changed even though we’ve managed to win three races up to that point, we felt that they were too marginal and that it wasn’t right for the drivers to having to drive so far within themselves and there were issues with the tires sustaining damage.”

Pirelli made temporary revisions to the tires for the German Grand Prix then underwent more substantial revisions in time for the last race in Hungary. Horner believes the alterations have been for the good of the sport:

“I think with the changes that have been made recently, really since Montreal, we have seen the drivers being able to push much harder in the races and really test each other.”

Horner added other teams had privately expressed concerns about the tires before Silverstone but did not make the same criticisms in public. “We were just being honest; we weren’t hiding behind the issue and being politically correct,” he said.

IndyCar’s Vasser-Sullivan expand into IMSA for 2019

James Sullivan and Jimmy Vasser. Photo IndyCar
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Not even one year after returning to the IndyCar ranks, Vasser-Sullivan Racing is taking AIM at the IMSA world, you might say.

While team co-owners Jimmy Vasser and James “Sulli” Sullivan will continue to partner with Dale Coyne Racing on the IndyCar side, they expanded their holdings Tuesday, announcing a partnership with AIM Autosport to campaign a new two-car Lexus-backed RC F GT3 effort in IMSA’s GT Daytona class.

The new team – named AIM Vasser-Sullivan – will replace 3GT Racing, which was part of Lexus’ sports car program launch in 2016. It will announce its two drivers in the coming weeks, the team said.

“Sulli and I are excited and looking forward to entering a new chapter in our racing careers,” Vasser said in a media release. “I have driven sports cars before, but my career was pretty much limited to the 24 Hours of Daytona, including a ‘class’ win in 1992 and second overall in 2008.

“The AIM Vasser Sullivan team, with the support of Lexus and our sponsors, has the tools to get the job done and we are looking forward to this new challenge.”

Lexus has made significant progress in its first two seasons in IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship competition, having earned a combined two race wins, five poles and finished third in the 2018 GTD Manufacturer point standings.

Vasser and Sullivan were part of the ownership group of KVSH Racing in IndyCar from 2011 through 2016 before the organization folded.

They also owned Tony Kanaan’s 2013 Indianapolis 500-winning car.

After sitting out the 2017 season, Vasser, a former CART champion, and Sullivan rejoined forces this past February, just before the start of the 2018 IndyCar season, partnering with Coyne to form a satellite team led by driver Sebastien Bourdais, who previously drove for KVSH.

Bourdais kicked off the new team’s effort with a win in the season-opening Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. He finished seventh in the overall season standings.

AIM Vasser Sullivan will have two home bases for its IMSA program: AIM’s current facility in Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada, as well as a new U.S. shop in Charlotte, North Carolina.

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