Tag Archives: Racing

DAKAR RALLY

Torrential rainfall puts pay to Stage Six of the Dakar Rally

With much of Oruro and the surrounding area underwater this morning the Dakar Rally organisers had no choice but to cancel Stage Six. The “extreme climatic conditions” in the region saw competitor safety put first and the proposed 527-kilometre timed special stage between Oruro and La Paz called off.

Get a real sense of the torrential rain falling in Oruro and the impact it had on proceedings by watching/downloading today’s News Cut here.

Those competitors who remain in the race after a gruelling first week that has seen high-profile retirements, such as Nasser Al-Attiyah, Carlos Sainz and Toby Price, came into La Paz this afternoon. The racers were greeted by hoards of enthusiastic fans that lined the streets of the highest capital city on the planet.

Now comes a well-earned Rest Day in La Paz with racers searching for a slice of comfort after exiting the mudbath of the Oruro bivouac. Rest Day gives Dakar competitors a chance for a full service of their race vehicle, various media commitments and hopefully the chance to get some much needed shuteye.

The Rest Day also gives a chance for petrolheads such as windsurf legend Robby Naish to get an up close look at how the Dakar works. Naish is due in the La Paz bivouac on Sunday to catch up with crews such as Team Peugeot Total, the Red Bull KTM Factory Team and Team Kamaz Master. After a dramatic first week of action they’ll be no shortage of stories for the thrill-seeker to hear about.

FORMULA 3

FACES GOING PLACES

ENAAM AHMED GOING DOWN UNDER TO RISE & SHINE

Enaam Ahmed, friend of F1 Weekly from his sensational karting career, is hoping to get his 2017 racing campaign rolling to match the conclusion of his 2016 season.

The Tasman series may have flown into extinction like the Dodo bird, but the New Zealand-based Castrol Toyota Racing Series has feathered the careers of several promising young drivers over the past few years.

Recent past champions include home grown talent Mitch Evans, who went on to become GP3 Champion. Lance Stroll won the championship in 2015 and this season will see action in Formula 1 with Williams.

In 2016, Lando Norris took the title and went on to win the Formula Renault Euro cup.

Enaam is now 16, the minimum age requirement to compete in the Castrol Toyota Racing Series, and with two race winning seasons of open wheel competition behind him, is looking forward to championship challenge against not only much older drivers, but also drivers who raced last year in the same series.

The opening round of the 2017 Championship is on January 14 at Ruapuna near Christchurch. Each round features three races and is staged on successive weekends; the final event on February 12 at Manfeild is the prestigious New Zealand Grand Prix.

After winning five karting championships in his final season of karting in 2014, Enaam raced to Rookie of the Year honors, and 5th overall, in the 2015 British MSA Formula Championship. He also raced in selected rounds of the Northern European-based SMP Formula 4 Series; winning five races, including all three at Pärnu in Estonia.

The 2016 season saw Enaam step up to the BRDC British F3 and in the opening round at Snetterton he was a race winner and also finished on the podium in the other two races of the weekend. He was classified 5th in the overall standings in this very competitive series. He then completed the 2016 racing season on a high note by winning the British F3 Autumn Trophy.

The car used in the Castrol Toyota Racing Series is the Italian Tatuus single-seater, powered by a 1.8 liter Toyota engine which produces around 160 kWs running on an 85 percent ethanol bio-fuel.

Michelin is the official tire supplier.

Enaam will race with Giles Motorsport; his teammates will be Australian Luis Leeds and Dutch driver Richard Verschoor.

Quick and consistent, Enaam’s fighting spirit has been the hallmark of this young racer from London town.

Racing so far from home base, Enaam said, “I’m really excited to be going into TRS with such fierce competition. It’s going to be a really good challenge to go up against these experienced guys as I wasn’t old enough to do it last year.

“Let’s see how it goes!”

  • Nasir Hameed

 

RENAULT SPORT

RENAULT SPORT RACING HONOURS IT’S 2016 CHAMPIONS

The awards ceremony for the Renault Sport Series’ was held Friday December 9 at the Atelier Renault on the Champs-Élysées in Paris. In the presence of Jérôme Stoll, President of Renault Sport Racing and many guests, this exceptional season came to its conclusion with the rewarding of the stars of 2016.

Renault has been a major contender in motorsport for more than 115 years. This year it opened a new chapter in its long history, emphasising more than ever competition in the centre of its strategy via Renault Sport Racing, the entity that is now based in Viry. This evening was also the occasion to draw the conclusions on the customer competition seasons in rallying and circuit racing, and to hand out the trophies to the laureates.

Clio R3T France Trophy: the triumph of Charles Martin

After dominating the season, Charles Martin received his cup from Jean-Pascal Dauce, Director of the Renault Sport Racing Customer Competition Programme. Charles Martin also picked up the Junior trophy and the Jean Ragnotti Best Performer award. The French driver was joined by fellow competitors William Pitot and Kevin van Deijne. Charlotte Dalmasso, French Rallywoman Champion, and Manu Guigou, third in the French Rally Championship, were also rewarded thanks to their exceptional performances in the Clio R3T.

Coupe de France Renault Clio Cup: Éric Trémoulet takes the title

Jean-Pascal Dauce also handed Éric Trémoulet his winner’s trophy as his rivals Jimmy and Teddy Clairet looked on, but they combined to give Team Clairet Sport the team championship. Pascal Arellano and Jeremy Sarhy were also honoured for their titles in the Gentlemen and Junior categories. After a season of hard battling, the five men will come together in the Team Clio Cup France at the 24-Hours of Dubai next month.

Renault Sport Trophy: a parade of champions

Laurens van den Acker, Directeur du Design Renault et initiateur du projet Renault Sport R.S. 01, montait ensuite sur scène pour remettre son prix à son compatriote Pieter Schothorst, sacré en PRO. Le Néerlandais faisait de même pour Fabian Schiller, titré en AM ainsi qu’en Endurance avec Markus Palttala. Grands animateurs d’une deuxième saison animée, Kevin Korjus, Fran Rueda, Miguel Ramos et Fredrik Blomstedt étaient également récompensés aux côtés du Team Marc VDS EG 0,0, lauréat chez les équipes.

Laurens van den Acker, Renault Director of Design and the creator of the Renault Sport R.S. 01 project, was next on stage to hand his countryman Pieter Schothorst his trophy for winning the PRO category. The Dutchman did likewise for AM category champion, Fabian Schiller who also won the Endurance crown with Markus Palttala. Front runners in a very competitive second season, Kevin Korjus, Fran Rueda, Miguel Ramos and Fredrik Blomstedt were also rewarded as well as winning team Team Marc VDS EG 0,0.

Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0: the consecration for Lando Norris

For more than 45 years, Formula Renault has revealed the biggest hopefuls of tomorrow. Following the McLaren BRDC Autosport Awards, Lando Norris was awarded the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 winner’s cup and rookie of the year title from Renault Sport Academy Director Mia Sharizman. His toughest rivals, Dorian Boccolacci, Max Defourny and newcomers Sacha Fenestraz and Will Palmer were also honoured, as was Josef Kaufmann Racing, which won the team title for the second consecutive year.

Renault Sport Racing, even stronger in 2017

Renault Sport Racing Managing Director, Cyril Abiteboul concluded the award ceremony in turning to the future of the categories in 2017. The commercial success of the latest generation of the Clio Cup has enabled it to solidify its presence in many markets. Also aiming to participate in Renault’s notoriety, trophies dedicated in France, Spain and Switzerland await the Clio R3T. On the circuits, the Renault Sport R.S. 01 will now demonstrate its qualities in prestigious races around the world. Finally, the Eurocup Formula Renault will have an improved calendar where Monaco and eight other 1 tracks, as well as the Pau street circuit, will allow for detecting young champions and perhaps future members of the Renault Sport Academy

FORMULA 1

LCH IS HE TOYING WITH NICO?

A dominant victory for Lewis Hamilton who wins in the United States for the fifth time. He trims Nico Rosberg’s championship lead down to 26 points, but the German still has the title in his hands at least that how it looks from the F1W studios. Here is a word from Ricciardo…

DANIEL RICCIARDO : “In the beginning of the race the supersoft tyres helped me but the actual start I felt wasn’t really that much better than the Mercedes. Then I saw Nico going to the outside so it gave me an opportunity on the inside. Obviously I would have loved to have lead out of Turn 1 but second was good enough. I tried to stay with Lewis the first couple of laps but then his soft tyres were able to go a bit better. I think we were looking good for P2 but then the Virtual Safety Car didn’t work in our favour today. I’m not going to be too disappointed, it’s just cool to be on the podium here. I love coming here, the anthem was pretty awesome before the race, I had goosebumps, I’m not gonna lie, and then the podium after was great. It’s another big bag of points and we at least had Nico’s pace so that’s encouraging and we’ll try and do what we can in the next few days. Obviously Max and Kimi had their misfortunes today so it was just me and Seb out there, but we still gained a little bit on Ferrari so we’re looking good. We’ll try and keep going like this and get on the podiums for the last few races.”

 

 

FORMULA 1

RED BULL FINDING PACE IN PRACTICE FOR THE USGP

DANIEL RICCIARDO
First Practice Session: 1:39.963, Position: 7, Laps: 26
Second Practice Session: 1:37.552, Position: 2, Laps: 33
“I’m happy with today. This morning was solid and the long run pace was good. We made a few changes in between the two sessions and look pretty good for now so hopefully we’ll stay like that. On our long run pace we look like we’re able to match Mercedes, possibly quicker, so if we get the pace we had today against Mercedes on Sunday it’s going to be a fun race. It is only Friday though so let’s see what they’re doing tomorrow but it’s nice to start the weekend on the right foot. I don’t think we’ve got hours and hours of work ahead of us. Just a little bit of fine tuning as always but we don’t have to search for too much at the moment.”
MAX VERSTAPPEN
First Practice Session: 1:39.379, Position: 3, Laps: 28
Second Practice Session: 1:38.258, Position: 5, Laps: 27
“We tried some different setups from FP1 and FP2 to try and find a strong feeling with the car. In the end we found a good one for the long runs on soft tyres but we still need to improve the short run pace. I’m quite confident we can do that tomorrow. We got some good data from the short runs but struggled to find a clean lap. We changed the setup during FP2 in order to improve some issues, which is why my car was worked on for a while. The supersoft seemed to lose grip every lap and get slower, so I think for the race it will be interesting. The long run pace seemed good, I had a Ferrari in front of me and I was catching it so I think that is a positive sign.”

WRC

CITROËN REVEALS ITS CREWS FOR THE 2017 AND 2018 FIA WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIPS

Just a few days after the Citroën C3 WRC concept car was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show, Citroën Racing has announced the crews that will be competing for the team in the next two seasons of the FIA World Rally Championship. Already confirmed to drive for the team until 2018, Kris Meeke/Paul Nagle will be joined by Craig Breen/Scott Martin and Stéphane Lefebvre/Gabin Moreau. Chairman of Abu Dhabi Racing, Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi will also be competing with his co-driver Chris Patterson at some events in 2017.

Step by step, Citroën Racing continues to assemble the necessary ingredients for its return as a works team in the FIA World Rally Championship. Since April of this year, the Citroën C3 WRC has completed seven development tests, both on gravel and tarmac, and is now very close to the final version.

Until 16 October, visitors to the Paris Motor Show can also admire the Citroën C3 WRC concept car, a veritable exercise in style that heralds the new generation of World Rally Cars, which are set to make their competitive debut at the 2017 Rallye Monte-Carlo.

By announcing now their driver and co-driver line-up for the 2017 and 2018 seasons, Citroën Racing takes another important step forward, one which has been highly anticipated by many WRC observers!

After confirming Kris Meeke and Paul Nagle at the end of last year, the line-up is now completed by two crews considered to be among the most promising young talents in the WRC. Having come to prominence in the rally programmes of the PSA Group and competing this season for the Abu Dhabi Total WRT, Craig Breen/Scott Martin and Stéphane Lefebvre/Gabin Moreau convinced Citroën to put their faith in youth.

This choice is very much in line with Citroën’s long-held policy aimed at identifying and developing talented young rally drivers. In the last 15 years or more, Citroën has identified some of the best in the business: Loeb, Ogier, Sordo, Neuville, Camilli and of course Meeke. Breen and Lefebvre are destined to add their names to this illustrious list!

At the start of the season, the team will enter two Citroën C3 WRCs: one for Kris Meeke and the other for either Craig Breen or Stéphane Lefebvre, who will alternate driving duties. The exact distribution of events to drivers will be announced at a later stage and Citroën will start entering three cars as soon as possible. The FIA’s World Motorsport Council recently decided it would let manufacturers enter three cars, the top two scoring points towards the Manufacturers World Championship.

At some rounds of the 2017 World Championship, a fourth Citroën C3 WRC will also be entered for Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi and Chris Patterson.

Already involved in the development of the Citroën C3 WRC, Kris Meeke, Craig Breen, Stéphane Lefebvre and Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi will continue to conduct testing until the new car completes homologation. At the same time, they will be competing at this year’s Rally de España (Meeke, Breen, Al-Qassimi) and Wales Rally GB (Meeke, Breen, Lefebvre) in order to acquire experience driving the current cars.

Yves Matton, Citroën Racing Team Principal: “We had several scenarios regarding the choice of our crews for the future. Kris Meeke was confirmed at the end of last year and has become the natural leader of the team. As well as challenging for the lead on each of his appearances in 2016, winning in Portugal and in Finland, he has also done most of the development work for our Citroën C3 WRC. In choosing two young crews to complete the line-up, I don’t think we can be accused of having gone for the easy option. But this original solution is very much aligned with Citroën’s mindset. And having seen them compete this season for the Abu Dhabi Total WRT, we believe in the potential of Craig Breen and Stéphane Lefebvre. They have the natural talent, motivation and work ethic to win rallies. I would also say we are proud to take these young drivers – who have been with the PSA Group for many years – up to the top level of the sport. At the start of the season, we’ll have no choice but to have them take turns behind the wheel in the second Citroën C3 WRC. However, as soon as possible, our three crews will be starting each round. Sheikh Khalid Al-Qassimi is a true ambassador for rallying in the Middle-East and we are very pleased to support him in his approach.”