F1 notes and quotes: Abu Dhabi Test Day 2

1 Comment

The final day of two at Formula One’s last day of running at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi is in the books. This also draws the curtain, officially, on 2014’s on-track running.

Here’s a quick round-up of more notes and quotes from the team releases after Wednesday’s session:

  • McLaren (see Tuesday report here): A second straight day of issues plagued McLaren’s running with its interim MP4-29X1/H1 chassis and Honda engine. An electrical issue from the off cost them the morning, and while Stoffel Vandoorne began a four-lap run in the afternoon, the car shut down. Nevertheless, Eric Boullier said better now than later. “It’s useful to discover these issues pre-Christmas, as it allows us to deepen our understanding of the complex integration between power-unit, ancillaries and the car,” he said. “And, to be honest, I’d rather be ironing out these problems here in Abu Dhabi, than discovering them in Jerez, next February.”
  • Mercedes (Tuesday report): Beyond the aero and tire work, Mercedes was also able to try some new parts good for the 2015 regulations. Reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein acquitted himself nicely in his first on-track day after simulator work prior to that.
  • Ferrari: Raffaele Marciello took over from Kimi Raikkonen and like the Finn on Tuesday, ended second. But more than the result, or the 91 laps, the simple fact of being an Italian in a Ferrari made his day.
  • Red Bull (Tuesday report): Daniel Ricciardo took over from Carlos Sainz Jr. The Australian banked 87 laps before stopping early due to a mechanical failure, bringing back memories – or nightmares – of the team’s troubled preseason testing earlier this year. It was still a productive day for the smiling Australian, who also worked on starting procedures.
  • Toro Rosso: After a troubled Tuesday where a suspension failure in the morning cost Max Verstappen half the day, today was much busier for the Faenza-based Toro Rosso crew.  Explained chief race engineer Phil Charles, “We had a very productive day, especially in the morning, when we ran continuously, even squeezing in an extra run before lunch. However, at the start of the afternoon, a technical problem kept the car in the garage for around three hours. The mechanics worked really well to get the car back out on track and we even woke up some of our nightshift guys to come and help! Thanks to their efforts we managed to give Max a further three runs.”
  • Lotus: The only team to run two drivers on the same day, and three for the week, brought out Esteban Ocon for the morning for 34 laps, and Alex Lynn in the afternoon for 52. A fluid leak scuppered Ocon’s program early. Having had an FP1 under his belt though, Ocon was more comfortable for his second run. Lynn expressed thanks for the opportunity and was pleased with the car’s reactions.
  • Force India (Tuesday report): Spike Goddard completed 89 trouble-free laps in his testing debut. “The VJM07 is a massive step up from my Formula 3 car so the first part of the day was devoted to adjusting to the new machinery,” he said. “The power and downforce of these cars is something on a completely different level; it was a massive shock to the system, but I got used to it fairly soon.”
  • Williams: The Tuesday leaders swapped Valtteri Bottas out and brought reserve driver Felipe Nasr in for one final day for the Brazilian leaves for Sauber. Aero and tire testing was the focus over his 83 laps. Said Nasr after his last day with the team: “It’s always nice to drive the FW36 and to have the chance to drive it on the final day of 2014 was very enjoyable.”
  • Sauber (Tuesday report): Marcus Ericsson led all runners with 112 laps completed on Wednesday, and like others was focused on aero and tire work. The test for him was more about integrating into a new team. “I had a good time getting to know the people within the team, and starting to work with everyone,” said the Swede. “Starting to drive the C33, building my feeling for the car, and giving my input for next year’s car was important.”
  • Caterham (Tuesday report): Another 76 laps for Will Stevens capped off his and the team’s running for 2014, and did himself good work over the last few days. “We cannot complain about the reliability here in Abu Dhabi, it’s been a trouble-free week. I’ve learned so much over the weekend and the past two days, I’ve got to the point where I now feel very comfortable in the car. Ot’s been a great week and I want to thank both the team and the fans for giving me this opportunity. Now let’s wait and see what the future brings.”

IMSA Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta: How to watch, start times, schedule, entry list

AUTO: NOV 13 IMSA - Motul Petit Le Mans
David J. Griffin/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
0 Comments

Start times, TV schedule: The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will conclude the 2022 season this weekend with the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta, which also will mark the end of the line for the DPi class.

The premier Daytona Prototype international category, which started in 2017, will be replaced by the new Grand Touring Prototype (GTP) class with its LMDh cars that will establish a bridge to Le Mans.

For the third time in four years, an Acura will be crowned the champion in DPi as the No. 10 of Wayne Taylor Racing holds a 19-point edge over the No. 60 of Meyer Shank Racing.

Last year, WTR’s No. 10 entered the season finale with a 19-point lead but lost the title to the No. 31 Cadillac of Action Express.

Full-time WTR drivers Filipe Albuquerque and Ricky Taylor (who will be joined by Brendon Hartley in the No. 10 this weekend) have a series-leading four victories this season. The MSR duo of Tom Blomqvist and Oliver Jarvis (who will be joined by Helio Castroneves this weekend) won the Rolex 24 at Daytona and have five runner-up finishes this year.

Championship scenarios in the other four categories:

GTD Pro: Points leaders Matt Campbell and Mathieu Jaminet will clinch the title by starting in their No. 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.

–GTD: There are 140 points separating the top four teams with Roman De Angelis and the No. 27 Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage GT3 leading by 45 points.

–LMP2: John Farano is first in the driver standings by 33 points over Dwight Merriman and Ryan Dalziel. In the team standings, the No. 52 PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports leads by 19 points over the No. 8 Tower Motorsport (Farano’s team).

–LMP3: No. 54 CORE autosport drivers Jon Bennett and Colin Braun lead by 83 points over the No. 74 Riley Motorsports of Gar Robinson.

With the 10-hour race requiring an extra driver, several stars from other racing series have been added. In addition to Castroneves, Scott Dixon and Ryan Hunter-Reay will serve as third drivers in Chip Ganassi Racing’s pair of Cadillacs.

Jimmie Johnson also will be making his last DPi start in the No. 48 Ally Cadillac with Mike Rockenfeller and Kamui Kobayashi. Petit Le Mans could mark the last start in an IMSA prototype for Johnson, who has said limited inventory likely will keep him out of the GTP category in the Rolex 24 next year.

Here are the start times, starting lineup, schedule and TV info for the IMSA Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta (all times are ET):


Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta start times, schedule, TV info

When: Saturday, 12:10 p.m. ET

Race distance: Ten hours on the 12-turn, 2.54-mile road course

TV: Noon-3 p.m., NBC; 3-10:30 p.m., USA Network. Peacock, the NBC Sports App,and NBCSports.com will have streaming coverage of the event from flag to flag beginning at noon. Leigh Diffey and Dave Burns are the play by play announcers with analysts Calvin Fish, Townsend Bell, James Hinchcliffe and Brian Till. The pit reporters are Kevin Lee, Hannah Newhouse, Dillon Welch and Matt Yocum.

IMSA.com live TV qualifying stream: Friday, 3:35 p.m. ET.

IMSA Radio: All sessions are live on IMSA.com and RadioLeMans.com; SiriusXM live race coverage will begin Saturday at noon (XM 207, Internet/App 992).

Forecast: According to Wunderground.com, it’s expected to be 63 degrees with an 85% chance of rain at the green flag.

Entry list: Click here to see the 48-car field for the IMSA Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta


Daily schedule IMSA Petit Le Mans

Here’s a rundown of the Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta in Braselton, Georgia:

Wednesday, Sept. 28

9:30 a.m.: Mazda MX-5 practice

10:25 a.m.: Porsche Carrera Cup

12:30 p.m.: Prototype Challenge practice

1:15 p.m.: Mazda MX-5 practcice

2 p.m.: Porsche Carrera Cup practice

3:30 p.m.: Michelin Challenge practice

Thursday, Sept. 29

8 a.m.: Prototype Challenge practice

9 a.m.: Porsche Carrera Cup qualifying

9:50 a.m.: IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice

11:40 a.m.: Prototype Challenge qualifying

12:10 p.m.: Michelin Challenge practice

1:50 p.m.: Mazda MX-5, Race 1

2:55 p.m.: IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice

5 p.m.: Porsche Carrera Cup, Race 1

6 p.m.: Michelin Challenge qualifying

7:30 p.m.: IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice

Friday, Sept. 30

8 a.m.: Prototype Challenge race

9:50 a.m.: Mazda MX-5, Race 2

10:55 a.m.: Porsche Carrera Cup, Race 2

1:10 p.m.: IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge race

3:40 p.m.: IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship qualifying

Saturday, Oct. 1

9:15 a.m.: IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship practice

12:10 p.m.: Petit Le Mans