пятница, 22 июня 2007 г.

Dunlop Drivers Cup 'Rallies' to Virginia International Raceway

Dunlop Drivers Cup is returning to legendary Virginia International Raceway with a new twist on U.S. Regional competition Sept. 17-21.

The amateur competition is adding rally racing for the first time to its diverse collection of racing venues.

Drivers, who are at least 21 and have a valid driver's license, can apply for a spot at VIR at:
http://www.dunloptire.com/driverscup/

Deadline for applying is July 15.

"We are so pleased to be returning the Dunlop Drivers Cup to VIR," said Janice Consolacion, marketing manager for Dunlop in North America. "The facility is beautiful, and it is custom-made for our unique competition. Few other racing facilities in the world offer the capability to hold on-track, autocross, karting, motocross and off-road contests simultaneously."

Consolacion said the rally-racing venue provides another opportunity for amateur drivers to hone their driving skills for international competition. Dunlop employs international instructors to teach amateurs the driving skills necessary to compete at the World Finals.

"The beauty of Drivers Cup is that driving enthusiasts literally come from all walks of life, from all backgrounds. It begins with people like you and me, who possess a passion for driving and racing. We bring them to Virginia International Raceway for the opportunity of a lifetime," Consolacion said.

For example, last year's World Finals winners were Dave Furchak, a mild- mannered customer rep for an Ann Arbor, Mich., software company; and Egon Szenttamasy, a hard-charging Hollywood, Fla., executive for a women's footwear company.

Furchak and Szenttamasy upset a favored German team in a 10-day rally in Germany, France and Spain. Fourteen teams of international amateur drivers competed for the Dunlop Drivers Cup. Dunlop USA brought three teams to Europe; the other two teams finished third and fourth.

"Virginia International Raceway proved to be the perfect training ground for our teams," Consolacion said. "It's really more than a racetrack; VIR is legendary among driving enthusiasts." In 1957, the facility was built as one of the country's first permanent road-racing circuits. In 2001, the 1,200-acre site was renovated and reopened as America's first true "motorsports resort."

"The call to compete is on. We want people who are passionate about driving and competition, who can help us repeat in the 2008 World Finals, which will be held in an undisclosed exotic location," she said.

European Dunlop officials started Drivers Cup in 1998 to showcase Dunlop's racing heritage and its broad range of passenger, truck, motorcycle and all- terrain-vehicle tire lines. Dunlop USA has competed in just two World Finals.

The global tire brand has an excellent reputation among performance car and motorcycle enthusiasts. Well known for its prestigious original equipment fitments and sports car racing heritage, Dunlop is also a key supplier to sport compact enthusiasts featuring "tuner" tire sizes and race series sponsorships.


Source: Dunlop Tires

четверг, 21 июня 2007 г.

Lend America Gets an 8,000 Horsepower Surprise

Lend America, The official mortgage sponsor of the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) and a sponsor on Mike Ashley's 8,000 Horsepower Nitro Funny car received a special surprise Tuesday morning. Employees arrived at work to find the team's 80 foot "race shop on wheels" and the actual race car at the front doors of Lend America's headquarters in Melville, NY. While on the way to Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Englishtown, NJ for the ProCare Rx SuperNationals this weekend, the team made a slight detour to support Lend America and its 300 employees with some goodies and a photo shoot.

All of Lend America's 300 employees received shirts sporting the Lend America Racing logo and Mike Ashley's signature promoting Mike's world record setting 334 MPH performance, a mark set earlier this year in Las Vegas. Over 100 of Lend America's employees will be accommodated with transportation from the office to the track to sit in a special pit side suite overlooking the finish line on Friday, the first day of qualifying.

"This was truly a surprise to see the Funny Car on the front steps of our office! The Lend America family will be in full force in Englishtown to cheer for Mike and the team this weekend," said Lend America spokesperson Brian Fried.

Lend America is currently promoting a HomeFree(TM) Giveaway, where a homeowner can enter and have their mortgage paid off in full up to $250k. Homeowners and potential homeowners can log on to the newly launched website http://www.lendamerica.com/ to enter the sweepstakes and learn more about their exclusive loan programs including its Liberty Grant and FHA, government insured loans to help with refinancing and purchasing residential homes.

Lend America is a nationwide direct lender, specializing in residential financing for one to four family homes. Lend America combines a flexible, common sense loan review process with hundreds of loan programs to provide exceptional service for its clients. Potential applicants can call 800-200-LEND for more information.


Source: Lend America

четверг, 14 июня 2007 г.

Win for Bernd Schneider and the New Mercedes-Benz C-Class

* Third Mercedes-Benz victory in the fourth race
* All four new Mercedes-BenzC-Class cars among top-six
* Four poles for the new C-Class in four races
* Bernd Schneider (2007 Genuine Parts AMG Mercedes C-Class) won the fourth round of the 2007 DTM in Brands . It is Bernd’s 42nd DTM victory and his first of the year. For the race version of the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class it is the second win within three weeks.
* All four 2007 C-Class cars finished among the top-six: Mika Häkkinen (AMG Mercedes C-Class), starting from pole position, came home fourth ahead of Bruno Spengler (DaimlerChrysler Bank AMG Mercedes C-Class) and Jamie Green (Salzgitter AMG Mercedes C-Class).
* In the overall ranking, Bernd Schneider improved to third with 17.5 points behind Audi drivers Martin Tomczyk (20 points) and Mattias Ekström (18). Paul di Resta (JAWA4U.de AMG Mercedes C-Class 2005), who retired on the first lap due to an accident without his own fault, dropped from first overall to fourth with 16 points.

* A crowd of 18,000 attended the 2007 DTM season’s fourth race during the weekend.
Stuttgart, Jun 12, 2007 -- The start: Mika Häkkinen started from pole position for the second time this year and for the third consecutive time from the front row. However, the Finn lost one position to Bruno Spengler who had qualified second. Bernd Schneider improved from sixth to fifth whilst Jamie Green lost one place from seventh to eighth. Following an accident at the second corner, which involved also Paul di Resta without his own fault, the safety car was deployed.



Lap 8 : Re-start. Mathias Lauda and Gary Paffett tangled, Lauda went off shortly.

Lap 9 : Bernd Schneider’s first pit stop, followed by Gary Paffett one lap later.

Lap 12 : Jamie Green pitted for the first time.

Lap 22 : Mika Häkkinen came in for his first stop from second position.

Lap 29 : Second pitstop of Jamie Green.

Lap 31 : Mika Häkkinen who had followed Bernd Schneider closely for a couple of laps made his second stop. Gary Paffett pitted for the second time one lap later.

Lap 35 : Second stop of Bernd Schneider. Bruno Spengler pitted from the lead for the first time on lap 36.

Lap 40 : Bruno Spengler was back in the lead, followed by Audi drivers Mattias Ekström and Martin Tomczyk.

Lap 48 : Accelerating after his second pit stop, Bruno Spengler stalled the engine shortly and resumed behind Mika Häkkinen, Bernd Schneider and Mattias Ekström.

Lap 54 : Bernd Schneider overtook Mika Häkkinen entering the Paddock Hill Bend. Afterwards, Mika had to hold off Ekström.

Lap 57 : Ekström overtook Mika entering the front straight.

Lap 63 : All drivers have completed their pit stops. Bernd Schneider was in the lead ahead of the Audis of Martin Tomczyk and Mattias Ekström, followed by Mika Häkkinen, Bruno Spengler and Jamie Green.

Finish (Lap 82) : Bernd Schneider held off all attacks and won after 82 laps with a gap of 0.543sec ahead of Tomczyk. Ekström ended up third followed by Häkkinen, Spengler and Green. It is Schneider’s 42nd DTM victory and his first after Lausitzring 2006.

The first to congratulate Bernd Schneider was Lewis Hamilton who had watched the race together with his Vodafone McLaren Mercedes teammate Fernando Alonso in via Satellite. Lewis who had raced in the Formula 3 Euro Series and won it in 2005, is like Fernando a big DTM fan and did physical training together with Bernd and all other team mates a couple of years ago. For Lewis and Fernando, the live broadcast from was a warm-up for the Canadian Grand Prix where Lewis will start from pole for the first time in Formula 1, and Fernando will be second on the grid – a nice parallel to the Brands Hatch grid with Häkkinen and Spengler on the front row.

Bernd Schneider, 2007 Genuine Parts AMG Mercedes C-Class, winner: “A great success, I am happy. I did not expect to improve from sixth on the grid to first on such a short track with only a few overtaking opportunities. But we had a perfect new C-Class and a great strategy and I thank my team for this super job. I dedicate this victory to my father Horst who turned 71 today. I was particularly happy that Lewis Hamilton has called together with Norbert and congratulated right after the race.”

Mika Häkkinen, AMG Mercedes C-Class 2007, fourth: “Starting from pole position I had expected more than fourth place; however, the entire weekend was positive and I am still quite happy. Congratulations to Bernd on his victory. With six races to go the championship is still wide open – I will ‘C’ what I can do.”

Bruno Spengler, 2007 DaimlerChrysler Bank AMG Mercedes C-Class, fifth : “My start was very good and I was in the lead for a long time. With my mistake when I stalled the engine after my second pit stop I lost all my chances for a podium finish and I am really angry about myself.”

Jamie Green, 2007 AMG Mercedes C-Class, sixth : “After my pit stops I got stuck in traffic and lost a lot of time. That’s the problem on this short and narrow circuit, because overtaking is almost impossible here.”

Alexandros Margaritis, 2006 stern AMG Mercedes C-Class, ninth: “To improve from 17th on the grid to ninth at the finish is quite a good performance; however, to miss the points positions by only one place is a bit frustrating.”

Gary Paffett, 2006 Laureus AMG Mercedes C-Class, 10th : “I was involved in the incident at the second corner and my car was damaged. Afterwards I lacked downforce and was not able to go faster.”

Mathias Lauda, 2006 Trilux AMG Mercedes C-Class, 12th: “I am not satisfied. After the incident with I had dropped to last place. In the following I got stuck behind other cars and then I made a mistake and had a short off.”

Susie Stoddart, 2005 TV Spielfilm AMG Mercedes C-Class, 16th: “I pitted too early after the safety car period and this was not counted as a compulsory stop. Therefore I had to make a total of three stops and a better result was not possible.”

Paul di Resta, 2005 JAWA4U.de AMG Mercedes C-Class, retired after a first-lap accident without his own fault: “I am very disappointed, because we had a strong strategy and points would have been possible despite my 15th grid position. It’s a shame; however, that’s racing.“

Daniel la Rosa, 2006 TrekStor AMG Mercedes C-Class 2006, excluded from the event: “I made my second compulsory stop on the final lap; however, the rules require you to drive a full lap afterwards what I didn’t do. Therefore I was disqualified.”

Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport (linked to the DTM press conference by telephone from the Canadian Grand Prix in ) : “Congratulations to Bernd on his excellent victory, today we saw the best Schneider ever. Congratulations also to the HWA team headed by Gerhard Ungar and Hans-Jürgen Mattheis on the second consecutive success for the new C-Class within three weeks. To charge through the field from sixth on the grid to victory on this short and narrow circuit is a remarkable performance and we had already expected this opportunity. On his ideal lap, Bernd was one and a half tenths faster than all his competitors. Without taking half of the points away after the Lausitzring, which is a undeserved handicap for us there would be three drivers in the lead, all tied on 20 points, and Bernd and Paul di Resta among them. Anyway, we have put this behind us and the championship is still wide open and with six races to go there are six C-Class drivers among the top-eight in the overall ranking. We now look forward to the season highlight at ’s Norisring in two weeks.”

Source: DaimlerChrysler

Nissan Pilot Carl Renezeder Chalks Up Two Wins in CORR Pro-2

Nissan Dominates CORR Pro-2 Events in Chula Vista

Carl Renezeder, in his Nissan Motorsports-supported Nissan Titan-bodied Pro-2 race truck, took two victories in Championship Off Road Racing (CORR) competition June 9–10 at the new Chula Vista International Off-Road Raceway in Chula Vista, Calif. During the event the Lake Forest, Calif.-based Renezeder chalked up his record 51st CORR win behind the wheel of his 715-horsepower Nissan Titan-bodied race truck in the always-competitive Pro-2 category.

“The combination of Carl Renezeder and the Nissan Motorsports-powered Titan race truck has proven unbeatable, and we’re very proud of him and his crew,” said Nissan Motorsports Marketing and Operations Senior Manager Ron Stukenberg. “Carl’s talent is unmatched in off-road racing and we’re thrilled to be partners with his racing organization.”



The third 2007 event for CORR, Rounds 5 and 6, marked the series’ return to Chula Vista. “I’ve won at Chula Vista many times, but this time it was a testament to Nissan Motorsports and my team,” said Renezeder. “We fought so hard, and thanks to everyone for elevating me and my Titan-bodied race truck to be the group to beat out there.”

Race Reports
Saturday
Saturday featured the Jason Baldwin Memorial Cup Qualifying race and Round 5 of the CORR Lucas Oil Series. In the “Baldwin Cup” qualifying event, Renezeder started in third and began attacking the leaders. After a few intense battles and some impressive driving, Renezeder was able to pass using the outside line to win the race, his 50th career CORR victory.

In the Round 5 Pro-2 event, Renezeder started in the back of the field and had a strong run, but traffic proved to be too tough to pass. At one point, Renezeder was up to third place, but a racing incident caused the Titan’s hood to unlatch and cover the windshield. After a pit stop where the crew removed the damaged hood piece, Renezeder entered the fray and again encountered traffic, digging his way to sixth place.

Sunday
Fueled by his previous day’s tough finish, Renezeder came hard out of the gate for Round 6, qualifying first and setting the fastest time by 6/10 of a second. The field was then inverted, placing Renezeder and his Titan in the sixth starting position. Showing patience, Renezeder picked off the competition and with three laps to go challenged the leader, motocross star Ricky Johnson. Johnson and Renezeder exchanged the lead repeatedly, and at the last corner, Renezeder called upon every horse of his Nissan Motorsports powerplant to pass Johnson for a crowd-pleasing win, his 51st career CORR victory.

About Nissan Motorsports
Nissan has a long heritage of Motorsports success, both off-road and on the track. Nissan’s Contingency Awards Program offers more than $200,000 in available awards to qualifying Nissan drivers in 2007, including those competing in Championship Off-Road Racing (CORR), the Lucas Oil World Series of Off-Road Racing (WSORR), Sports Car Club of America (SCCA), Grand Am KONI Challenge Series, Grand Am Rolex Sports Car Series, NOPI Drag Racing Association (NDRA) and the Formula Drift Championship.

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Source: Nissan Motorsports
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2007 Formula 1 World Championship, 6th round in Montreal: Canadian Grand Prix - Maiden Victory for Lewis Hamilton

* Lewis Hamilton and Vodafone McLaren Mercedes lead both World Championships
* Fernando Alonso seventh following an extra pit stop due to a stop-and-go penalty
* Vodafone McLaren Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton won the Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal

Montreal and took his maiden Formula 1 victory in only his sixth race. After 70 laps with four Safety Car periods, Lewis won 4.3sec ahead of Nick Heidfeld (BMW Sauber) and Alexander Wurz (Williams Toyota). Fernando Alonso ended up seventh following an extra pit stop due to a 10sec stop-and-go penalty. It is the 47th victory for the McLaren Mercedes partnership. In the drivers' championship, Lewis Hamilton took the lead with 48 points ahead of Fernando Alonso with 40 points. After six of the season's 17 races, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes heads the constructors' table with 88 points ahead of Ferrari on 60.



The start: Lewis Hamilton started the race from his first Formula 1 pole position with Fernando Alonso lining up alongside him in second place on the front row of the grid. The Spaniard had the better start; however, he ran wide at the first corner and dropped to third, behind Lewis and Heidfeld.

The race : On lap 22, Lewis came in for his first routine stop and resumed in fourth place after 9.0sec. The Safety Car was deployed one lap later following an accident of Adrian Sutil (Spyker Ferrari). Fernando now made his first pitstop (7.8sec).

When the race was re-started at the end of lap 26, Lewis was in the lead again ahead of Heidfeld and Fernando. Only one lap later, the Safety Car came out again after an accident of Robert Kubica (BMW Sauber).

The next re-start followed at the end of lap 33. Due to an 10sec stop-and-go penalty for pitting too early during the first Safety Car period, Fernando came in on lap 36. The Spaniard dropped to 13th. On lap 46, he posted the fastest lap of the race (1min16.367).

Lap 48: Second routine stop of Lewis (6.0sec); he maintained the lead. After an accident of Christijan Albers (Spyker Ferrari), a third safety car period followed on lap 51. Fernando made his second regular pit stop on lap 53 5.7.sec). The race was re-started one lap later.

Safety Car period number four started on lap 56, when Vitantonio Liuzzi’s Toro Rosso was stationary on the front straight with the re-start following on lap 60. After 70 laps, Lewis took the chequered flag for his first Grand Prix victory; Fernando came home seventh.

Comments

Lewis Hamilton: “I’m on another planet after this – I simply can’t find the words to describe what it feels like to win my first Formula 1 race. The team has done a fantastic job and I’m so happy to be part of the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes family. I made an OK start off the line – nothing spectacular but managed to get a good exit out of the first corner and whilst mayhem was happening around me I was able to keep my cool and focus. Obviously I’m pleased that my good friend Robert is OK after his accident. It seemed like every time I opened up a bit of a gap the Safety Car came out and I had to start all over again. It was only a few laps from the end I realised that victory was within my grasp and I started noticing things like the fans cheering and when I crossed the finishing line it was amazing. I now have to stay focused and keep up the good work. It’s been an incredible start to my Formula 1 career so far but I know there is a tough season ahead of us. Finally thanks to the entire team at McLaren and Mercedes-Benz for all the hard work they have put into the car – it’s an absolute pleasure to drive and be part of such a winning combination.”

Fernando Alonso: “I think this was a strange race with the Safety Car being deployed so many times which worked to Lewis’ advantage today and my disadvantage. I came into the pits for the first time on lap 24 as I had no more fuel so basically there was nothing I could do. It was a shame as this resulted in a ten second penalty but I guess that unfortunately those are the rules but there was no alternative other than to stop on track with no fuel. After that I had to push as hard as possible because I was stuck in the middle of the field and when you push to the maximum you sometimes go off track but at that stage there was nothing to lose. Whilst it was a difficult race for me I’m pleased for the team and Lewis that we were able to secure some important points and Lewis winning his first race and also that Robert is OK. I hope for a bit more luck for the US Grand Prix next week and at least I can leave having scored two points more than .”

Ron Dennis, Team Principal: “The whole team worked so hard to achieve the optimum result today. The frustration and disappointment of receiving a stop-and-go penalty having been forced to stop in the pitlane when the pitlane was closed in the first safety car period was obviously immense. However this in no way should detract from a mature and disciplined drive by Lewis to claim his first Grand Prix win. His family should be justifiably proud of his achievement and whatever McLaren and Mercedes-Benz have contributed only compliments his talent and commitment. Fernando was truly unlucky today but there is still a long way to go in the World Championship and we appear to be extremely competitive. The entire team is obviously delighted that Robert Kubica is OK.”

Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: “Lewis took his first Grand Prix victory in his sixth Formula 1 race. He did the best job of all and kept cool throughout. Congratulations and compliments to him. Fernando fell victim to the new Safety Car rules and received a stop-and-go penalty because he had to refuel as the pits were still closed during the first safety car phase, but when the tank is empty you have no other choice than to come in. He posted the fastest lap of race and was a contender for the podium, but at least he scored a couple of points under difficult circumstances. We have won three out of the six races and finished all the race laps with both cars so far this year and are the only team to have finished every race in the points. Thank you to everybody in the team for their great efforts to make this possible. We now look forward to the US Grand Prix in in one week’s time. The most important news today is that Robert Kubica is OK after his horrifying accident.”

Source: DaimlerChrysler

вторник, 5 июня 2007 г.

Volkswagen Desert Racing Team Makes Strong Factory Debut at 39th Tecate SCORE Baja 500

Volkswagen Race Touareg
Volkswagen Race Touareg made strong debut at the 39th Tecate SCORE Baja 500. The #81i Red Bull Race Touareg driven by Mark Miller along with co-driver Ralph Pitchford. (PRNewsFoto/Volkswagen of America, Inc.)

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., June 4 /PRNewswire/ -- A pair of Volkswagen Race Touareg 2 vehicles, from the automaker's acclaimed Dakar Rally Factory Team, claimed two top-20 finishes at the 39th Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 500 in Ensenada, Mexico.

The Volkswagen Race Touareg 2 team was paced by American Mark Miller, with an 11th place finish in the International Truck Class, and South African teammate Giniel de Villiers, who took 18th place in the same division.

This event marked Volkswagen of America's first official factory entry in the SCORE Desert Racing series. Miller piloted the #81i Red Bull Race Touareg 2 to a time of 10:00:38 hours, while de Villiers' #83i Race Touareg crossed the finish line at 10:18:44 hours. Round three of the six-race 2007 SCORE Desert Series featured a record lineup of 492 competitors in 28 Pro and six Sportsman classes for cars, trucks, motorcycles and ATVs. This year's tight and technical 424.22-mile course saw only 283 competitors, or 57 percent of all participants, finish within the 20-hour time limit.

"The results of this race are very positive for Volkswagen," said Clark Campbell, Volkswagen of America Motorsports manager. "While the Race Touareg SUV is built for an entirely different type of racing, our two finishes clearly demonstrates the vehicle's reliability, efficiency, and speed, proving that we are more than capable of competing with the best of the competition."

"That was the toughest, most brutal route I've ever driven in a Baja 500," said event veteran Mark Miller, driver of the #81i Race Touareg. "The course was very difficult and you can't believe the abuse this thing took - I can't believe I can even stand up right now. It's the roughest thing that this vehicle has ever endured."

His teammate, Giniel de Villiers, said the vehicle's shorter suspension system held up admirably, even against typical, Baja-equipped competitors.

"Only on the extremely bumpy parts of the track did we have a disadvantage, compared to the U.S. vehicles, with their long suspension travels. We are subject to limitations in this regard on account of the Dakar regulations," said de Villiers "Despite this technical difference, we were definitely able to keep the pace and perform even faster in some stretches of the course."

Volkswagen's Race Touaregs were likely helped by the efficiency of the 2.5 L in- line five-cylinder TDI engine, as they were the only two vehicles that did not have to stop to refuel during the entire race. Additionally, they suffered no mechanical problems; combined, the two vehicles only made three pit stops along the course, to replace a spare tire that had fallen off and for both vehicles to receive fresh tires.

"The fact is that we achieved this success with a diesel engine that is relatively quiet but develops incredible torque," said Miller. "We participated not having to refuel even once, while the U.S. vehicles had to stop for fuel two or even three times. This is a testament to how advanced and fuel efficient the TDI technology truly is."

"The drivers and co-drivers put in a magnificent performance," said Campbell. "The entire Volkswagen Red Bull race team was superb - we had a strong plan going into this and everyone helped to execute according to that plan - the preparation was awesome."

Founded in 1955, Volkswagen of America, Inc. is headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan. It is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany. Volkswagen is one of the world's largest producers of passenger cars and Europe's largest automaker. Volkswagen sells the Volkswagen Rabbit, Volkswagen New Beetle, Volkswagen New Beetle convertible, Volkswagen GTI, Volkswagen Jetta, Volkswagen GLI, Volkswagen Passat, Volkswagen Passat wagon, Volkswagen Eos, and Volkswagen Touareg through approximately 600 independent U.S. dealers.

Visit Volkswagen of America online at www.vw.com


Source: Volkswagen of America, Inc.

пятница, 1 июня 2007 г.

Four Fast Facts on F1 Montreal

What is the main characteristic of the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve?

The track, which was named in the memory of the French-Canadian driver, comprises a number of very high speed straights punctuated by slow corners and hairpins, with the drivers braking hard from top speeds of up to 315km/h. The slowest corner is the L’Epingle hairpin, which is taken at 55km/h. To avoid losing time on the straights, this characteristic means that the cars need to have excellent corner balance to allow the drivers to get on the power as they are exiting the corners. The nature of the track also sees the greatest demands with regards braking. Canada-specific brake packages are run, including an increased cooling capability and in addition the set-up of the car has to ensure excellent braking stability. Vodafone McLaren Mercedes spent time at the recent Paul Ricard test evaluating this area with Pedro de la Rosa at the wheel of the MP4-22. Finally, the location of the track can lead to significant head and tail winds, which have an effect on the performance of the cars.



How does the nature of the circuit affect Bridgestone Potenza tyre choice?

The track has relatively low grip levels and as a result, softer compound tyres tend to deliver the best performance as they provide the grip required. The surface is not massively abrasive, so it does not affect the performance greatly. The track is not a permanent racing circuit, and as a result it gets grippier during the weekend as more rubber is laid down.

What levels of downforce are used in Montreal?

At the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, a low-medium downforce configuration is used. This is to ensure the cars can be as fast as possible on the long main straight. The low downforce and low grip conditions means that cornering is more of a challenge, and even though the turns are all largely low speed, it is still necessary to be very precise. The Vodafone McLaren Mercedes will also run a Montreal-specific aerodynamic package for the race in order to optimise performance.

When did the freight and the team depart for Canada?

The Vodafone McLaren Mercedes sea freight departed the UK for Canada in the week prior to the Spanish Grand Prix. The contents will cover both the Canadian and United States Grands Prix. It is scheduled to arrive on Friday 1st June. Air freight will leave the McLaren Technology Centre on Saturday 2nd June, arriving in Montreal on Sunday 3rd / Monday 4th.

TEAM QUOTES

Fernando Alonso

“We have a great momentum in the team right now after such a fantastic result in Monaco, which is a positive way to be going into the North American double-header. There has been no opportunity to test since Monaco; however the team has been pushing hard off track to keep the momentum going. Until last year, I hadn’t had great results in Canada, so it was fantastic to win there. It is always a tough race, and you see a lot of retirements because you are stressing the whole car with the high speeds and the hard braking zones. The track conditions also change over the race weekend, the grip levels improve as more rubber is laid and the dusty conditions. On race day, it is much better than Friday. We have some new packages on the car for Montreal; we are all pushing hard to attack and fight for more race victories. It is a good circuit to race on as there are a number of places you can overtake, which makes it more exciting for the drivers, teams and fans.”

Lewis Hamilton

“The result in Monaco was great for everyone in the team, it was a dream result considering it was my first year there in a Formula 1 car, and it means we are going to North America at the top of both Championship tables. I cannot wait to get back on track and continue to focus on racing. This will be my debut at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, because of the chances there are to pass; it looks like a great track to compete on. It has some very distinctive characteristics, such as the low grip, the long straights, hard braking and so on, so my initial laps will focus on understanding all these and how best to drive the track to get good times. I have completed preparation work with my engineers at the McLaren Technology Centre specific to Canada and the US, and it will be great to finally take to the track here in Montreal.”

Martin Whitmarsh, CEO Formula 1, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“The Canadian Grand Prix is a very different event to the Monaco race. We go from the slowest, tightest track packed with corners on the calendar to a circuit that is all about long periods of power and braking. The MP4-22 performed incredibly well in Monte Carlo, however as the track conditions are poles apart, we are not going to Montreal with the same expectations. We go to Canada aiming to fight for the victory and to maintain our positions at the top of both the Constructors’ and Drivers’ Championships; however are realistic about the potential to dominate. The test at Paul Ricard prior to Monaco had two days of Canada running and useful intelligence was gained. It is going to be a tougher battle and the track is notoriously tough on race cars, but we will keep pushing.”

Norbert Haug, Vice President, Mercedes-Benz Motorsport

“The first three letters are almost the only things, which the street circuits of Monaco and Montreal have in common. The layout of the track located at the Île Notre Dame, the Olympic park of 1976, could hardly be more of a contrast to Monaco. Instead of maximum aero downforce as in Monaco, there will be only a little; instead of slow turns we will see fast corners, instead of short straights, there are long ones. The longest straight is the section between the L’Epingle hairpin and the chicane prior to start and finish; 1,100 metres or 15 seconds are run under full throttle. This is particularly demanding for brakes and engines; four times per lap, the drivers slow down from speeds of more than 300km/h to about 100km/h. During the test one and a half weeks before Monaco, our team completed an intensive test at the Paul Ricard circuit’s long version to prepare for this race.”


Source: DaimlerChrysler