New Jersey organizers still believe in 2014 chance

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The organizers of the planned F1 street race in New Jersey still believe they will be on the 2014 calendar despite being left off a draft schedule last month.

“We never had any expectation of being on a preliminary schedule,” race promoter Leo Hindery Jnr told Sporting Life.

“The calendar decision will be made later this month, and although I can’t guarantee anything, we fully expect to be on it.”

It’s almost two years since the original announcement of the ambitious plan to bring Formula One to the Hudson River waterfront, in sight of the famed Manhattan skyline.

Although F1 has accepted the possibility of holding a second race in the USA alongside the United States Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas, the first attempt to get the race on the calendar this year failed.

“Hands down this has been the toughest challenge of my career,” Hindery admitted.

He said Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone is behind the project, providing they deliver everything on time: “Bernie told us if we stayed consistent with the rules and applications then he would expect there to be a New Jersey race.”

“Time-wise, we have done everything we have been told to do, and when to do it.”

New Jersey is one of four venues vying to join the calendar next year, along with Austria, Mexico and Russia.

Carb Day: Tony Kanaan is fastest in final practice for Sunday’s Indy 500

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Tony Kanaan wants to put legendary driver and team owner A.J. Foyt back into Victory Lane at the Indianapolis 500.

Kanaan took a big step toward achieving that goal in Friday’s final practice for Sunday’s 102nd running of the Greatest Spectacle In Racing.

Kanaan was fastest of the 33-driver field, with a best lap around the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval at 227.791 mph, more than 2 mph faster than the second-fastest driver, Kanaan’s former teammate, Scott Dixon (225.684 mph).

Foyt won a record-tying four Indy 500’s as a driver. It’s been nearly 20 years since he also won as a team owner in 1999 with Kenny Brack behind the wheel.

Marco Andretti was third-fastest (225.200 mph), followed by Sebastien Bourdais (224.815), Charlie Kimball (224.712), 2017 Indy 500 winner Takuma Sato (224.083), Will Power (223.942), Danica Patrick (223.653), Spencer Pigot (223.584) and Ed Jones (223.556).

Other notable driver speeds included:

* Pole sitter Ed Carpenter was 14th fastest (223.219 mph).

* Reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champ Josef Newgarden was 15th (223.186 mph).

* Helio Castroneves, hoping to earn a record-tying fourth 500 win, was 17th (222.913 mph).

* Graham Rahal was 21st (222.526).

* Former 500 winner Ryan Hunter-Reay was 26th (221.916 mph), followed by rookie Robert Wickens (221.821 mph), carrying the mantle for Schmidt Peterson Motorsports with James Hinchcliffe having failed to qualify for the race.

* The biggest surprise was 2016 Indy 500 winner Alexander Rossi, who was 32nd fastest (221.374 mph).

We’ll have the full speed grid, as well as full driver quotes, shortly. Please check back soon.

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