Chevrolet penalized for IndyCar engine regulation infraction

9 Comments

Chevrolet has been penalized after the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. Several elements of the penalty are indicated below.

Here is the release from INDYCAR:

Chevrolet, which earned 128 points in the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on March 29, has been penalized 220 points per Verizon IndyCar Series regulations.

According to Rule 10.6.4.4 of the Verizon IndyCar Series rulebook, 20 points will be deducted for a non-minor engine repair. Eleven of the 12 Chevrolet engines in the field underwent repairs following the St. Petersburg race.

All Chevrolet and Honda competitors are using the first of their allotted four engines covering 10,000 miles for the season.

Engine manufacturers, drivers and entrants receive championship points corresponding to their finish in a race (points are awarded to both manufacturers’ top three race finishers). Bonus points are awarded to the corresponding driver who earns the Verizon P1 Award (one point) and the manufacturer leading the most laps (two points).

Manufacturers also can reap 10 points for each engine that reaches its 2,500-mile change-out limit. But 20 points will be deducted for an engine failing to complete its life cycle and 20 points will be deducted for an engine undergoing a non-minor repair that requires a component change, subject to INDYCAR approval. The latter is what occurred with the 11 Chevrolet engines.

Juan Pablo Montoya earned 50 points for the St. Petersburg race win, followed by Team Penske teammate Will Power’s 40 points for second and third-place finisher Tony Kanaan (35 points). Power earned Chevrolet a bonus point for claiming the Verizon P1 Award. Chevrolet-powered drivers led 105 of the 110 laps to earn two additional points, for a total of 128 for the race.

Ryan Hunter-Reay was the highest finisher among Honda drivers, in seventh place. He earned 26 points for the manufacturer, which totaled 70 points. Following the Chevrolet sanctions, Honda holds a 162-point advantage in the manufacturers’ championship heading into the Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana on April 12.

Here is Rule 10.6.4.4 of the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Rulebook:

Twenty (20) points will be deducted for an Engine undergoing a non-minor repair that requires a component change, subject to INDYCAR approval. The Engine will no longer be eligible for points from Rule 10.6.4.2.

And the aforementioned 10.6.4.2:

Ten (10) points will be awarded for an Engine that completes its life cycle.

Here is a statement from GM provided to MotorSportsTalk, from Chris Berube, Chevrolet Program Manager for Verizon IndyCar Series:

“We discovered an issue in durability testing after these race engines were built, and decided to make repairs as a precaution.”

And here is an updated statement from Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. Vice President Performance Vehicles and Motorsports:

“We identified a batch of valve springs that, due to a process change at one of our suppliers, may fracture before the full mileage requirement. We notified IndyCar of the issue and obtained approval to change the valve springs. Eleven of our 12 engines were updated following the St. Petersburg race. Based on lower accrued mileage, the current plan is to address the 12th engine after the race at Barber Motorsports Park.”

X44 Racing win 2022 Extreme E championship as Abt Cupra score first race victory

2022 Extreme E Uruguay
Extreme E
0 Comments

Abt Cupra Racing’s Nasser Al-Attiyah and Klara Andersson scored their first win in the Extreme E Energy X Prix in the 2022 finale in Uruguay as Lewis Hamilton’s X44 Vida Carbon Racing drivers Sebastien Loeb and Cristina Gutierrez survived a chaotic finale to edge the 2021 champion Rosberg X Prix team of Johan Kristoffersson and Mikhaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky, by two points.

“There are so many emotions,” Andersson said in Extreme E’s coverage. “I’ve been waiting for this for so long. In my second race, first full weekend to be at the top of the podium: it’s big.”

Andersson was behind the wheel at the finish.

Rosberg Racing entered the event with a 17-point advantage over X44, but the standings were close enough that four teams remained in contention in Round 5.

“It’s a crucial weekend for us,” Loeb said in Extreme E’s coverage prior to the race. “We are not in the best position to win the championship, but the only thing we can do is try to win the race and score as many points as possible.”

The top two title contenders each crashed in qualification and were relegated to the Crazy Race, Extreme E’s version of the Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ). For the moment, they had the steepest hill to climb, but then the other two championship contending teams, Chip Ganassi Racing and Acciona Sainz Racing failed to advance from their heats.

Only one team advances from the Crazy Race, so the X44 drivers were in a must-win situation to simply keep hope alive.

More: Extreme E 2023 schedule

Ahlin-Kottulinsky and Gutierrez ran wheel to wheel into the first turn at the start of the LCQ.

The Rosberg racer experienced crash damage in that turn that damaged her front steering, but managed to limp back to the pits at the end of her two-lap stint. The team attempted to fix the steering, but incurred a penalty for having too many mechanics in the pit area.

Meanwhile, Gutierrez took the early lead, but knew she would need to sit through a five-second penalty for an incident earlier in the weekend. The female half of the gender equal pair erased the penalty by entering the Switch Zone with a five-second lead before turning the car over to Loeb.

That was all the nine-time World Rally Championship titlist needed to give him the advantage needed to win the Crazy Race.

But the championship was not over yet. X44 Racing needed to finish third or better in the five-car finale to earn enough points for the title and after advancing from the LCQ, they were forced to take the worst grid position.

A chaotic start to the Finale saw Loeb run as high the lead and low as fourth after getting pushed off course during his first lap. And that is how he entered to Switch Zone.

On her first lap, Gutierrez slammed into Molly Taylor. With one lap remaining, X44 and Gutierrez were still in fourth and the title hope was quickly evaporating, but it was announced halfway through the lap that the third-running Andretti United team would suffer a penalty for a Switch Zone infraction. The seven-second deduction for Timmy Hansen braking too late in the zone made the difference in the title.

Coming off a disappointing Copper X Prix when Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour crossed under the checkers first, but were relegated to fifth by penalty, the McLaren pair scored their first podium of the season in second.