Lieb: Porsche pumped up following Le Mans success


NÜRBURGRING – Porsche LMP1 driver Marc Lieb believes that the team is entering the second half of the FIA World Endurance Championship in high spirits following its success at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in June.

Porsche claimed its first overall victory at Le Mans since 1998 as the no. 19 car of Nico Hülkenberg, Earl Bamber and Nick Tandy headed up a one-two finish for the German marque.

Speaking ahead of this weekend’s 6 Hours of Nürburgring in his native Germany, Lieb spoke about the new high downforce package that has been fitted to the Porsche 919 Hybrid cars for the race.

“It looks a little bit different from the outside,” Lieb said. “It’s a big change. Obviously the track conditions weren’t as good as in the test days in the first session [which was largely wet], but everyone is pushing forwards in one direction.

“In the team, everyone is really pumped up after the success at Le Mans. So it’s obviously giving everything a lot of confidence. It’s great to see the work which has been done after Le Mans.

“I think it’s a good step and should bring us a little bit closer to the competitors. I think we’re in good shape for the weekend, but it’s a six hour race, and temperatures will increase for Sunday, so this will be the question mark for tire wear. But I can’t wait to go out and race.”

Audi has also changed its aero kit for the forthcoming weekend, reverting back to the package that it used for the 6 Hours of Spa in June.

Championship leader Marcel Fassler spoke about how Audi has been working to improve its car following its defeat at Le Mans to Porsche.

“Yes for sure after Le Mans, we were working a little bit,” Fassler said. “But obviously from the outside you can’t see it as much as for example with Porsche, the aerodynamics they have.

“Sure, we try to develop things to be prepared for the big fight now to the end of the season. There are still five races to go.

“We’re leading by 22 points or something. It’s at least something, but the races are long and our opponents are really good and fast so we need to score points, that’s the main point, and try to be in front of our competitors all the time. It sounds an easy thing to do, but we’ll try to do it.”

Motocross: Chase Sexton to miss Hangtown after midweek practice crash

Sexton Hangtown practice crash
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Chase Sexton announced on Instagram he will sit out this weekend’s Pro Motocross race at Hangtown in Rancho Cordova, California after a practice crash on Tuesday left him with a concussion.

Sexton’s crash on Tuesday happened during a test session at Fox Raceway.

“Bummed to make this post but I’ll be sitting out this weekend,” Sexton said. “As you guys saw I had a big one during qualifying at Pala, then another one on Tuesday this week that banged me up pretty good. Nothing broken just need a few days to get back to 100%.”

Despite his crash in the first qualification session in Pala, California, Sexton mounted up for both motos and finished second in each race behind his teammate Jett Lawrence, who was making his Motocross debut and won with a pair of first-place finishes. Sexton padded his SuperMotocross points’ lead over the injured Eli Tomac, who is still second in the combined Supercross and Motocross standings despite missing the SX finale at Salt Lake City and the outdoor opener with a ruptured Achilles tendon.

Sexton has an advantage of 78 points over Cooper Webb and cannot give up his SMX lead by missing this round.

At stake, however, is the risk of losing ground to Lawrence in the Pro Motocross championship. Sexton currently trails his teammate by six points and is liable to lose significant ground this weekend.

In addition to his concussion, Sexton has also been diagnosed with mononucleosis and the combination of the two conditions caused the team to make the difficult decision to keep him out of the lineup at Hangtown.

“I’m super-bummed to miss this weekend’s race,” Sexton said in a press release. “I feel like I rode well at Pala, and I was really looking forward to Hangtown because it’s a good track for me. Unfortunately, I was already pretty banged up from my qualifying crash on Saturday, and now with mono and Tuesday’s concussion on top of it, I want to do the right thing and hopefully be back on the track soon.”

A return date for Sexton has not yet been announced.

Other 2023 Injury News

450 riders
Eli Tomac, Achilles tendon | It was just a freak deal
Justin Barcia,
collarbone and shoulder
Jason Anderson, vertebrae
Christian Craig, elbow
Marvin Musquin, wrist
Malcolm Stewart, knee | Signs two-year extension
Aaron Plessinger, hip | returned at Salt Lake City
Dylan Ferrandis, concussion | Will not return until Motocross
Cooper Webb,
concussion | returned at Pala

250 riders
Nate Thrasher, hip
Stilez Robertson, leg
Cameron McAdoo, shoulder
Seth Hammaker, arm and wrist
Austin Forkner, knee | Injury isn’t the hardest part
Jo Shimoda, collarbone | returned at Atlanta
Jalek Swoll, arm | returned at Pala