Here's Why Consumers Are Scared of Self-Driving Cars

Today is Friday, so it must be podcast day!

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Circuit of the Americas is Offering to Buy Back Early Bird Ticket Packages to Re-Sell At a Higher Price

Formula One has always been a rich person’s sport, but it has become equally as exclusive for fans trying to get tickets. Three-day passes for the U.S. Grand Prix at Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin can easily cost $600 or more, and prices at other venues are just as steep. Some fans got an early-bird deal for this year’s race at COTA, paying just $299 for three-day passes, but now, track officials are offering a buy-back so they can re-sell the tickets later at a higher price.

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QOTD: What's The Most Famous Racetrack Corner You've Driven?

Canada Corner. The Carousel*. The Corkscrew.

If you follow racing or even just know a little bit about famous racetracks, these names are familiar to you -- they are some of the most famous corners in racing.

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QOTD: Would You Buy a Jar of Used Racing Tires?

That headline is weird, I know. No, I didn't sniff glue or slip too much whiskey into my afternoon cup of coffee. Nor is it jet lag speaking -- though I am in California for a first drive (more on that tomorrow). No, there really is a race track selling a jar full of used racing tires.

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Lancia Continues Teasing Returning to Rally

A former rallying icon has confirmed its intention to return to the sport of rallying after a three-decade absence. Lancia — creator of the Stratos, Delta Integrale, and 037 — has said it’s actively trying to re-enter motorsport. But the Italian automaker also has to make the finances work before it’s willing to move forward with the program.

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F1 Drama After Whistleblower Accuses FIA President of Shenanigans

A whistleblower has accused FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem of abusing his authority to influence the results of the 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. The alleged action was attributed toward influencing the results of the Formula 1 event.

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Formula One Rejects Andretti-Cadillac Bid

Andretti-Cadillac's bid to join the Formula One grid has been officially rejected, confusing plenty of people that thought the team had a good chance of being the first American entrant since Haas. Despite the FIA making the motorsport franchise the singular finalist in its Expression of Interest process, F1 appears to have had a chance of heart.

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Manhole Cover Damaged a Ferrari and Squashed F1 Las Vegas GP Free Practice 1

The Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix is this weekend, and things are off to a rough start. After seeing ticket prices fall due to softer-than-expected demand, race organizers are facing criticism after a manhole cover badly damaged one of the two Ferrari cars.

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General Motors is Now a Registered F1 Power Unit Manufacturer

The drama between Michael Andretti and the old guard of Formula 1 continues. While the sport’s governing body, the FIA, approved the American team’s entry to the grid with backing from General Motors and Cadillac, F1 itself has yet to accept the application. Even so, Andretti’s position recently got much stronger, as GM announced that it would develop and build power units in-house beginning in 2028.

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FIA Approves Andretti and Cadillac for Formula One

The Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) has confirmed that Andretti Formula Racing LLC has been granted approval to join Formula One. While Micheal Andretti first announced plans to have the family racing team join the F1 grid in 2022, FIA hadn’t taken the matter under serious consideration until the following year.

The FIA officially launched an application process to identify prospective teams by early 2023. Knowing that F1 was eager to continue drawing fans in the United States, Andretti immediately announced a partnership with Cadillac. We previously speculated that being backed by General Motors would make all the difference for Andretti Autosport.

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Report: FIA to Reject Every F1 Team Application Except Cadillac

The Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) is expected to reject three applications for new Formula 1 teams with the Cadillac-backed Andretti Global being the only exception.

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Satisfied? All F1 Teams Have Been Cleared of Cost Cap Malfeasance

Despite evidence that numerous Formula One teams had broken the sport’s updated financial rules during the 2022 season, the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) has formally announced that all ten have since operated under the cost cap limitations. 

"The review has been an intensive and thorough process, beginning with a detailed analysis of the documentation submitted by the competitors," stated the FIA. "Additionally, there has been an extensive check of any non-F1 activities undertaken by the teams, which comprised multiple on-site visits to team facilities and careful auditing procedures to assess compliance with the Financial Regulations."

Criticism has not abated, however.

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QOTD: Seeing Gran Turismo?

The Gran Turismo movie, appropriately named Gran Turismo, opened on Friday.

Did you see it? If not, do you plan to?

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QOTD: Should Race Series Mix It Up?

I posted yesterday that in my opinion, NASCAR should continue to mix up the types of tracks it races on.

Now it's your turn.

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Opinion: NASCAR Needs to Continue to Mix It Up

DuSable Lake Shore Drive is back open. The flooding has, hopefully, receded. The drivers are no doubt thinking about Atlanta.

Yet the Grant Park 220 that took place here in Chicago last weekend is still very much on my mind.

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TTAC Video of the Week: NASCAR in the City

This week's video will be pretty straightforward -- just some videos I shot during the race that let you get up close and personal.

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Drivers, Fans React Positively to NASCAR in Chicago

NASCAR's first foray into racing on the streets of downtown Chicago was met with criticism from the public and skepticism from the drivers before the race even took place. Most, if not all, of the drivers sounded a positive tune after being on track. Fans, too, seemed pretty happy with the event.

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Getting Wet and Wild With NASCAR in Chicago

There’s always a first for everything. In the case of NASCAR’s Grant Park 220, there were a lot of firsts.

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NASCAR Grant Park 220 Recap – Newcomer Wins New Type of Race

Shane van Gisbergen may not have much NASCAR experience -- he was making his first-ever start on Sunday in Chicago at the Grant Park 220 -- but he has plenty of street-race experience. And it showed.

Showed in a big way, as the New Zealand native took home the trophy in the first-ever NASCAR race on the streets of Chicago, which was also the first-ever NASCAR street race.

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TTAC Rewind: NASCAR Comes to Chicago

I remember reporting on the news that NASCAR was coming to Chicago. It was less than a year ago when the news broke. It started as a rumor that I saw bouncing around somewhere, probably on the Tweet machine, and by the time I finished writing the post it was confirmed.

Now I am here, at the event's media center, typing up this post while waiting for the rain to stop so the racing can start.

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I will be leaving in a few minutes to head to downtown Chicago to work on our coverage of NASCAR's Grant Park 220 race. So, with that in mind, I have a question for you.

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Jimmie Johnson Withdraws From Chicago NASCAR Race

NASCAR veteran Jimmie Johnson will not be racing in this coming weekend's Grant Park 220 in Chicago after his in-laws were found dead in Oklahoma.

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Boogeyvan: Ford SuperVan 4.2 Headed to Pikes Peak

Trust the gearheads taking part in Pikes Peak to come up with vehicles appearing to be ripped straight off the digital pages of PlayStation. Ford, which has been fielding entrants since the Peak’s first event in 1916, is taking to the hill this year in their SuperVan 4.2, a machine with over 1,400 horsepower.

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TTAC Video of the Week: Looking Back on NASCAR Invading LeMans

Here's the transaxle breaking, courtesy of friend of TTAC Bozi Tatarevic. This was repaired and the car did finish.

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QOTD: How to Solve Racing's Aggression Problem?

About halfway through Sunday's Indianapolis 500, I looked at the clock and thought "this thing will be over soon. I am going to have more free time today than I expected." How wrong I was.

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Non-Profit Group Attempts to Milk the Indy 500

There are few things on this green earth that get up my nose further than people trying to shove their lifestyle onto others through loud media campaigns. Sure, there are some universal truths to which we should all adhere – be kind to animals, take care of yer children, and don’t anger the Managing Editor* – but loudly pushing ideals ain’t one of ‘em.

The impetus for this mini-rant is the appearance of billboards near the Indianapolis Motor Speedway bearing the phrase ‘Winners DON’T Drink Milk’ as part of an ad campaign by a non-profit organization bent on getting people to stop drinking the stuff.

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TTAC Video of the Week: Check Out This Racing Crash

Today's video of the week is a short one.

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Climate Activists Stage Protest at German Formula E Race

On Sunday, the Berlin E-Prix had to be delayed after a gaggle of climate activists attempted to glue themselves to the starting grid. While the setback itself was minor, the protest has reportedly left everyone scratching their heads — as the event was part of the Formula E racing category which only fields all-electric vehicles. 

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Video of the Week: John Force's Wild Ride

I missed this craziness during last week's NYC madness, but famed drag racer John Force had himself a not-so-fun ride last week.

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Report: F1 Team Sponsor Linked to Russian Army. Again.

Haas Automation, which sponsors a Formula 1 team, has once again been accused of shady connections to Russia.

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TTAC Video of the Week: Holy IndyCar Crashes, Batman!

As I've stated on these pages before, I am a semi-casual racing fan. Meaning I watch NASCAR and IndyCar and F1 and IMSA here and there, I know most of the big-name drivers, and I understand the basic rules and such for each series, but I don't watch every race or know every driver. I do tend to watch more races this time of year since baseball hasn't yet revved up (oddly matched pun fully intended).

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QOTD: Are You Watching Drive to Survive?

Season 5 of "Drive to Survive" on Netflix drops today. Are you watching?

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Video of the Day: NASCAR Crashes at the Clash

Sunday's NASCAR Clash at the Coliseum in Los Angeles was a crash-filled affair, as one might expect from a track that was just a quarter-mile to a lap.

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Chevrolet Rolls Out Corvette Z06 GT3.R

In front of this weekend’s Daytona 24 Hours, Chevy took the time to haul the covers off its newest mid-engined monster meant for customer racing – though you’ll have to wait until next year to see it on the track.

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Andretti Global, Cadillac Team Up for Shot at F1

Cadillac announced today that it is going to pair with Andretti Global to make a run at competing in Formula 1.

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Ken Block Dies in Snowmobile Accident UPDATED

Professional rally driver Ken Block died in a snowmobile accident in Utah on Monday.

He was 55 years old.

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FIA Bans F1 Drivers From Making Political Statements

The FIA is reportedly putting an end to any independently-led political activism within Formula 1 and any other motorsport it currently oversees. While this could be a blessing to those tired of witnessing the likes of Sir Lewis Carl Davidson Hamilton constantly pushing environmental issues before his multi-million dollar F1 car is loaded onto the sixth cargo plane of the season, it seems likely that organizers will still allow the kind of activism that they’re in broad alignment with.

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Desert Determination: Finding Your Off-Road Rhythm

“My mom is the most selfless, helpful person I know,” Amber Turner, an avid off-roader turned welder and Ultra4 racer recently said about her mother.

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Crash to Win: NASCAR Was Genuinely Exciting On Sunday

You probably missed it, but one of the most exciting moments in modern motorsport occurred over the weekend. Ross Chastain needed to make up five positions on the last lap of the Xfinity 500 if he wanted to make it to the playoffs and opted to throw his car into the outside wall of Martinsville Speedway, remembering that he’d seen that strategy work in old video games. The resulting moment is genuinely surreal to watch, primarily because it worked so well.

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Alcan 5000 Rally Part Two -- The Vehicles

The Alcan 5000 combines long-distance road-tripping with time-speed-distance rally competition. It also means you need to bring the right car for the job. The cars of the Alcan 5000 are as diverse as the people who enter. From sports cars to pickup trucks, modern crossovers to classic Minis, each team chooses a different tool for the job.

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QOTD: Will Netflix Do for IndyCar What It Did for F1?

A report suggests that IndyCar and Netflix are working on a docuseries that would be similar to "Drive to Survive", which covered Formula One.

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Extreme E to Fans: Stay Home

In-person attendance is generally seen as a litmus test for the health of a racing series. If the stands are relatively empty on any given weekend, talking heads will inevitably speculate on a decline in popularity and bemoan the sport’s future (alert readers are sure to know exactly the series to which we are alluding).

But not at Extreme E, apparently. They’re actively telling all hands to keep clear of their events.

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NASCAR Invading Downtown Chicago Next Summer [UPDATED]

A bit of racing news has crossed the wire — news that is admittedly close to my heart since I live in the Windy City.

NASCAR is apparently coming to Chicago.

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VW CEO Says Audi and Porsche Will Be Joining F1

Audi and Porsche have been talking about Formula One for ages and it appears that the talk is finally being replaced by action. Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess has confirmed that both will be entering F1 in the near future.

While the exact nature of their involvement hasn’t been explained, it’s assumed that Audi will be purchasing one of the existing teams while Porsche will become a purveyor of engines. Diess has only confirmed that the companies will be getting involved thus far.

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They Knighted Lewis Hamilton After He Lost

Lewis Hamilton was knighted by the British royal family on Wednesday. The seven-time Formula 1 champion was dubbed by a sword held by Prince Charles at Windsor Castle, presumably because Gan-Gan and company thought he was due for another title.

Instead, Hamilton lost to Max Verstappen during the final lap of the last race at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix that took place on Sunday. Verstappen squeaked by the 36-year old Brit on Lap 58, creating a bunch of confusion about whether or not the pass took place while the safety car was on the field. Mercedes protested, alleging that Max had made an illegal pass and that Hamilton would have won the event if all lapped vehicles had overtaken the safety car due to the time allotted before the restart. It was a close race with a confusing ending. But the victory was ultimately handed to Verstappen — making knighthood a consolatory prize for Hamilton.

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Parts Parade: Toyota Releases Heavily Modified GR 86 Concepts

Gazoo Racing (GR) has earned itself quite a bit of cachet since Akio Toyoda decided to make it the de facto performance arm of Toyota in 2009. It’s slowly supplanting Toyota Racing Development (TRD), which is still technically running the show but currently feels more like the manufacturer’s North American off-road racing division. GR has been producing global, models that actually provide enhanced performance and output from the factory while TRD has basically become the company’s in-house parts catalog.

However, Gazoo has some performance parts of its own and Toyota has been eagerly modifying the crap out of its vehicles as a way to tease them. The brand is now ready to start selling them and has re-released last month’s dual GR 86 concepts — designed to tickle the enthusiast community — with the relevant details.

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Mini Pacesetter to Debut at Formula E World Championship

Tasked with building something to serve as the official safety car for the 2021 FIA Formula E World Championship, Mini has delivered a vehicle that bridges the gap between the raucous and rowdy John Cooper Works model and all-electric Mini Electric. While one-offs aren’t usually all that interesting to your average consumer, the Mini Pacesetter seems to be providing the automaker with a space to test some of its theories about how a JCW EV might take shape and will likely foreshadow such a product.

The manufacturer has even acknowledged this, though it’s a little early to expect an electrified version of Mini’s flagship performance model. Despite looking like it’s ready to compete in a series of its own, the Pacesetter uses an unmodified motor lifted from the Mini Electric. That means about 180 horsepower and a smidgen over 200 foot-pounds of torque, which would have been outstanding on the featherweight original. But the last few decades have forced Mini’s products to become comparatively portly, requiring the brand to shave as much weight off the Pacesetter as it could.

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Ginetta Sports Cars Coming to America

Ginetta, a British race car manufacturer for more than 60 years, has opened Ginetta North America in South Boston, Virginia, to provide support for their motorsports customers across North America.

From their U.S. base, Ginetta will be able to not only market, distribute, and sell their sports cars, but grow their presence and the brand. Part of the expansion into North America included the acquisition of TMI AutoTech, a leader in low-volume sports car manufacturing in the U.S.

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SEMA Vs. the EPA's Attempt to Outlaw Race Cars

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is embroiled in a lawsuit with Gear Box Z, Inc., contending that the Clean Air Act (CAA), doesn’t allow you to convert your street car into a competition-only race vehicle.

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NASCAR Ready For Circuit of The Americas Races in May

NASCAR’s inaugural run at the Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas will take place May 21-23, and Speedway Motorsports, the event organizer, announced their entitlement partners today.

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Mickey Thompson Tests Tire Toughness at King of the Hammers

Only 37 of 84 cars finished the King of the Hammers, proclaimed the planet’s toughest one-day off-road race, on time this year. Tad Dowker and Jordan Pellegrino, two racers on Mickey Thompson Baja Boss X tires, were among the finishers.

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Can-Am Tops UTV King of the Hammers

The UTV King of the Hammers race had 113 side-by-sides (SXS) lined up at the start. True to its reputation as the most brutal one-day race, only 46 vehicles, or 41 percent, finished.

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King of the Hammers Nails Kick-Off Race

King of the Hammers returned to Johnson Valley, California for a week of racing, featuring the largest desert racing purse: $270,000. That was doled out to winners in T1, T2, B1, B2, B3, and Class 11 vehicles.

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QOTD: Which Muscle Car is the Most Muscular?

Classic muscle cars are legendary, some blend of parts not originally meant to go together. Our question is, of all the muscle cars produced, which is the most muscular?

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The Dakar Rally's Twelve Days and Nights in Saudi Arabia

The Dakar Rally is being contested for the 43rd time, yet it’s only the second year that it is being staged in Saudi Arabia. Last year, the rally demonstrated to the world the Saudis’ ability to organize a global sporting event, bringing the Kingdom to prominence as a regional and international motorsports hub.

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Land Rover Defender Returns to Dakar in Supporting Role

Land Rover Defender 110s are taking on the 2021 Dakar Rally, the 13-day, 12-stage, 4,751-mile all-terrain challenge. One of the toughest sporting events in the world, these production-spec models will support an ambitious new Dakar Rally team, Bahrain Raid Xtreme (BRX) throughout the race.

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New F1 Teams Have To Pay $200 Million Under Latest Agreement

Interested in joining Formula 1? We hope you have $200 million handy because that’s the amount you have to pay to enter a new team under the sport’s seventh Concorde Agreement. Signed by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), the Constructors Association, and existing F1 teams last month, this arrangement exists to help ensure participants remain committed to the sport to offer organizers and broadcasters the ability to maximize marketability.

They also tend to be kept a secret, with only their most general aspects of the deal ever making it out to the public. We already knew that teams would be subject to additional fees through 2025 to prove they were serious about joining while discouraging existing names from exiting the sport. But McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown has since confirmed the amount with Racer. Over the weekend he said new entrants would be starring down the barrel of a $200-million fee, adding that the rationale was to avoid diluting the existing prize totals split between teams.

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Fan-free NASCAR Racing Leads to Mixed Feelings

I’m a relatively casual racing fan.

Daytona and Indy are appointment viewing for me each year, but the rest of the racing season, I sort of tune in and out as I please.

I used to follow NASCAR more closely, but over the years I’ve drifted away. I suspect that’s because the drivers I grew up watching got old and now either pilot a lounge chair in their living rooms on Sundays, or have a cushy broadcast gig.

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Chip Ganassi Racing Boots Kyle Larson, NASCAR Issues Indefinite Suspension

Chip Ganassi Racing officials have confirmed the organization’s split with NASCAR Cup Series driver Kyle Larson (#42). Tuesday’s announcement comes less than two days after Larson was heard uttering a racial slur during an iRacing event held on Easter Sunday. Chip Ganassi Racing previously decided to suspend the driver without pay while it examined the situation. As that probably focused heavily on the public response, its decision to sever the seven-year relationship is hardly surprising.

While technically guilty of the same behavior every random teen with a gaming headset engages in during online play (until you mute them out of frustration), Larson made the rookie mistake of not being fourteen while also having a racing contract and enough NASCAR wins to be considered high profile. If he plans to keep racing within the sport, he’ll be required to attend sensitivity training. NASCAR has also issued an indefinite suspension, citing violations of the organization’s general procedures and member conduct guidelines.

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Incredible LeMans Finishes Spoiled by Technical Infractions

This year’s 24 Hours of LeMans was expectedly dominated by the two LMP1 entries from Toyota, but it wasn’t the expected car that won. LMP2 had a huge battle of its own, American-based IMSA teams challenged in GTE Pro, and the heartfelt GTE Am win changed after the end of the race.

After dominating for nearly the whole race and resetting the track record, the #7 Toyota Gazoo Racing TS050 Hybrid of Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway, and Jose Maria Lopez came in with a down tire. Upon going back out, they realized that the tire pressure sensor system was reporting the incorrect tire’s pressure and they had to come in once again. Driving the entire track with a low tire cost them dearly.

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  • Jeff Corey, Thanks again for this series on the Eldorado.
  • AZFelix If I ever buy a GM product, this will be the one.
  • IBx1 Everyone in the working class (if you’re not in the obscenely wealthy capital class and you perform work for money you’re working class) should unionize.
  • Jrhurren Legend
  • Ltcmgm78 Imagine the feeling of fulfillment he must have when he looks upon all the improvements to the Corvette over time!