Report: NOLA Motorsports Park sued by Indy event organizers


File this one under the “not good” department, for both the Verizon IndyCar Series and the inaugural Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana.

A report from the New Orleans Advocate has indicated that race event organizers Andretti Sports Marketing filed a federal lawsuit against NOLA Motorsports Park.

The report said there have been some vendors, rather than the event organizers, getting paid in full.

An excerpt from the Advocate report reads:


Andretti signed a three-year contract to organize the Grand Prix beginning in 2015; the agreement said only $2.6 million of the state money would be used on track upgrades. Andretti said it was assured there would be enough money left over to compensate it for all of its services.

Instead, the lawsuit claims, $3.4 million of the state grant ended up being spent on improvements, leaving Andretti and other vendors short.

Neither the NOLA Motorsports Park track president nor Andretti Sports Marketing president responded for comment, following inquiries by the Advocate.

Andretti has the race on a three-year deal through 2017, but this year’s first race weekend featured several challenges, most notably miserable weather.

John Lopes, Andretti Sports Marketing president, told MotorSportsTalk in April that if the weather was different, “we’d be having a different conversation” about the race itself.

Andretti Sports Marketing is promoting three open-wheel events in 2015. It has already done the Miami ePrix, which went off well despite initial track delays on Saturday morning, the NOLA race, which had its aforementioned challenges, and also the Milwaukee IndyFest, which occurs on July 12.

Valtteri Bottas fastest in Friday F1 practices for Russian Grand Prix

F1 Sochi Valtteri Bottas
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SOCHI, Russia — Valtteri Bottas paced both F1 practices Friday for the Russian Grand Prix on Friday as Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton was slowed by damaged tires in the first session.

Bottas turned a fast lap of 1 minute, 33.519 seconds in the second session that bettered Hamilton’s 1:33.786.

Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo was more than a second behind Bottas in third at 1:34.577, followed by the McLaren Racing duo of Carlos Sainz Jr. (1:34.723) and Lando Norris (1:34.847).

In the first F1 session at Sochi, Valtteri Bottas set the pace with a time of 1 minute, 34.923 seconds, beating Ricciardo by half a second. Max Verstappen was third quickest in his Red Bull, a further 0.147 back.

Hamilton could only manage 19th fastest after locking up his tires and leaving them with a flat spot. Ferrari again struggled to find pace with Sebastian Vettel ninth and Charles Leclerc 11th.

HISTORY IN SIGHTLewis Hamilton aims to tie Michael Schumacher’s record

The first session was briefly red-flagged when Nicholas Latifi crashed his Williams. Carlos Sainz Jr. spun his McLaren backward into a barrier and broke off his rear wing.

Verstappen spun during the second session but avoided damage to his car.