F1weekly podcast # 357

oreca-team

Podcast number 357 online.

This is a special Motorsports Mondial weekend edition.

Interviews with members of Team Oreca.

Oreca is a French racing team, founded and run by Hughes de Chaunac, former team manager of F1 team AGS. Oreca has had success in many areas of motorsport since the early 90s, running the works BMW operation in the French Supertouring Championship, winning the FIA GT Championship and the Le Mans 24 Hours in the GT2 class with a Chrysler Viper GTS-R and overall for Mazda 787B in 1991, on their second attempt and first after a decade; preparing the Renault Clio S1600 for rallying and winning the ice racing Andros Trophy with a Toyota Corolla driven by Alain Prost. More recently, Oreca have assisted Renault in building the new Megane V6 for the Renault Eurocup Megane Sport and fielding an Audi R8 in the 2005 Le Mans 24 Hours with support from Audi France. Also for 2006 Oreca will be running the Saleen S7R in the Le Mans Series. The Oreca Saleen S7R has already won the 2006 Spa-Francorchamps Le Mans race.

Oreca worked closely with Dodge on the new Dodge Viper Competition Coupe, producing well over 100 customer cars for the period 2006-2007 to GT3 specification.

Hughes de Chaunac has stated that Oreca could build and race their own Le Mans Prototype in 2009. However, on September 14, 2007, Oreca announced their intent to purchase French manufacturer Courage Compétition. Oreca will use Courage’s engineering expertise to develop their new prototype, to be badged as a Courage-Oreca.

F1weekly podcast # 356

 

rene-arnoux

Podcast number 356.

Breakaway series… what could have been.

Teams say Max Mosley not to be trusted and expect him to run for re election.

Motorsports Mondial with Nasir Hameed and…

Special Interview with the Dijon Prenois man himself Monsieur René Arnoux.

Please enjoy our conversation with Rene Arnoux on podcast 356.
The little man from Grenoble made big headlines in 1979 in the dramatic duel
at Dijon with his friend Gilles Villeneuve. Their battle even eclipsed the
historic first turbo win for Arnoux’s teammate Jean-Pierre Jabouille.

In 1982, Arnoux again made headlines, this time at Paul Ricard. He
celebrated his birthday, July 4th, by winning the French Grand Prix
over Alain Prost against team orders.

Arnoux talks about both these races in his interview.

He moved to Ferrari from Renault and was released by the Italian team
in mysterious circumstances.

These days he is involved in running his in-door karting centers in France.

René Alexandre Arnoux born July 4, 1948, in Grenoble European Formula Two champion in 1977, René Arnoux graduated to Formula One in 1978, with the small French Martini team of Tico Martini. In an organisation with insufficient means to figure in the highest echelon of the sport, Arnoux was unable to demonstrate his abilities. Martini abandoned Formula One during the season, having run short of money. Arnoux found refuge at the end of the season at the Surtees team, but once again found himself in a team on the edge of failure.

For the 1979 season, Arnoux joined the Renault team, which entered two cars for the first time since its debut in 1977. The team’s only victory of the year was taken by Arnoux’s teammate Jean-Pierre Jabouille at the French Grand Prix at the Dijon-Prenois circuit, but Arnoux took the headlines due to a fierce but good-natured wheel-banging battle with Gilles Villeneuve for second place.

In the 1980 season, Arnoux took his first two Formula One victories, but a lack of reliability prevented him from playing a part in the fight for the world title, although he took three pole positions. Arnoux’s situation was complicated in 1981 by the arrival of Alain Prost at Renault. Inevitably their rivalry on track flared up off the track and relations between the two men deteriorated, dividing the small world of French sport. The conflict reached its peak at the 1982 French Grand Prix at Le Castellet. The drivers took the first one-two in Renault’s history in Formula One, Arnoux finishing ahead of Prost. Prost was furious, considering that his teammate had not kept to the team orders agreed before the race, according to which he should have ceded the win to Prost, who was better placed in the championship. Arnoux replied that no orders had been given before the race and that he was free to drive his own race. He took one other win at the Italian Grand Prix at the end of the season. He was also lucky to walk away from a high speed crash after brake failure at the end of the long straight in the Dutch Grand Prix.
Arnoux started at the back of the field for the 1984 Dallas Grand Prix, but climbed to second by the finish.

The pairing of Prost and Arnoux having become unsustainable, Arnoux left Renault at the end of 1982 to join Scuderia Ferrari. With three victories, at the Canadian, German, and Dutch Grands Prix, he was in contention for the world title for much of the season, but was left behind by his rivals Prost and Nelson Piquet in the championship run in. After a less successful second season at Ferrari, during which his new teammate Michele Alboreto progressively took the initiative from him, Arnoux was suddenly dismissed after the first Grand Prix of the 1985 championship, the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Without a drive for the majority of the 1985 season, Arnoux made his return to Formula One in 1986 for the Ligier team, where he delivered several good performances. However, despite maintaining his motivation, Ligier were not competitive and Arnoux went through three seasons at the back of the grid before leaving Formula One after the 1989 season. Towards the end of his career Arnoux attracted some controversy; he was frequently accused of blocking faster cars in qualifying and when being lapped. He finished his career with 181 World Championship points.

René Arnoux has since started an indoor karting business called Kart’in, consisting of four tracks in France, two in the Parisian area, one in the suburbs of Lyons and one near Marseille. He also owns and manages two factories, frequently appears and drives in historical events on behalf of Renault and resides in Paris.

Arnoux was one of the drivers invited to take part in the Grand Prix Masters championship in 2006 and 2007, restricted to former Formula One drivers. In 2007 and 2008 he drives for the Renault H&C Classic Team, e.g. presents and drives Alain Prost’s F1 car from 1983 at World Series By Renault events.

 

Jacky Ickx

 

Podcast 354 interview.

ickx-and-wife

Jacky Ickx

Riding to Success

Belgian ace Jacky Ickx was a racing sensation both on two and four wheels. As a teenager he was a factory rider for Zundapp.
 

 ickx-at-spa

Ickx was only 23-years old when he joined Ferrari. His first Formula 1 win
came in the wet at Rouen in the 1968 French Grand Prix.

ickx-le-mans-1969

Ickx “walked” to victory in the 1969 Le Mans 24-Hours driving the beautiful Gulf Oil- sponsored John Wyer Racing Ford GT40 in one of the closest finishes ever.
 

ickx

A happy and successful man Jacky Ickx now resides in Monte Carlo.

Please enjoy our conversation with this racing legend on podcast # 354.
 

Max makes peace

 

max-mosley-09

Max Mosley agrees to FOTA’ demands! There will be no breakaway series.

Hockenheim will no longer host the German Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton to drive Senna’ McLaren MP4-4 at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.

Max Mosley will not stand for re-election when his fourth term ends in October.

Tune in to Motorsports Mondial with Nasir Hameed for the latest in race news.

 

Max Mosley

 

Patience Maxed Out in Formula One

By Nasir Hameed
max-mosley-2
What a difference a year makes. On the eve of the 2008 British Grand Prix at Silverstone, the FIA/FOM duo dropped a bombshell on Formula 1 fraternity that the birthplace of FIA World Championship will no longer host the race after 2009. Amid much despair Donington Park was announced as the new home of British Grand Prix starting in 2010.

Fast forward twelve months. Now FOTA has returned the favor by announcing the formation of a breakaway series next season. The Formula One Teams Association, led by Ferrari’s Luca di Montezemolo, has been at odds with FIA and FOM over rules and regulations, and the age old problem, money.

The FIA instituted budget cap in the wake of global financial meltdown. Finger pointing led to airing the dirty laundry in public which led family secrets out in the open. The $100m sweet deal Ferrari had with FOM, which the Italian stallion received before any other teams saw a dime of sports revenue. Then came the revelation of “veto power” bestowed on the Scuderia on any rule changes.

The now defunct GPMA, Grand Prix Manufacturers Association, was dismantled by these perks, or as Bernie put it, “We bought Ferrari’s loyalty”.

Now the high-priced prancing horse has galloped away from the loyalty barn, with very heavy excess baggage: McLaren, Renault and Red Bull to name a few. Lawyers on both sides are already working overtime. After all, as the late Paul Newman once put it, “they have to eat, too”.

FIA is threatening legal action for breach of contract while on the other hand FOTA is assuring Formula 1 fans that their show will commence next year with, among other promises, affordable ticket prices. While the contribution to Formula 1 motor racing by both Max Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone is immense, racing fans are not too excited to dish out over $300 for a ticket, watch every year as one traditional venue after another disappear from the Formula 1 calendar to a race in front of empty seats where majority of the locals have not the passion nor the purse for a Grande Epreuve event.

The casualty list is long. No Grand Prix in the land of Fangio or the nation that hosted the very first Grand Prix over a century ago. The Dynamic Duo could not even mint money in the largest commercial market in the world.

Montezemolo spoke for man on the street when he said “Races are going to cities because they have a nice skyline”.

The arrogance and complete disregard for the thousands of fans at the 2005 US Grand Prix is not forgotten by the millions who watched the farce on television or were “lucky” enough to be at the historic six-car race.

The flamboyant Irishman Eddie Jordan, famous for giving Michael Schumacher his first ride in Formula 1, recently commented, “You could re-float the Titantic on the egos in Formula 1”.

Sixty years of history, heritage and sacrifices of Grand Prix combatants should not be allowed to sink without a trace as powerful, extremely wealthy men engage in self-destruction of the pinnacle of motor racing.

Rumors are rampant. The new FOTA led series will be managed by IMG, International Management Group, race in Argentina and in the streets of Helsinki with two or more events in the US alone.

Mosley and Bernie have vowed a ferocious legal battle. The long drawn-out court room sessions are sure to leave no winners behind.

D–as in Di Montezemolo– day is tomorrow in the city of lights as he faces Max Mosley at the World Motorsport Council meeting in what could be the termed as Gunfight at the F1 Coral.

Do we really need another Grand Prix near Tombstone, AZ?

Racing fans around the world are hoping that among such bright men common sense will prevail and a happy medium will be met. And the show, one show, will go on next season.


 

Alexander Rossi

California Kid Czechs Out!

rossi-22

Alexander Rossi takes historic win in round six of Formula Master in Brno, Czech Republic. The Nevada City native took the lead from Nicolas Maulini on the opening lap and never looked back. Victory is first American success in this series and also the first for Czech team ISR Racing.
An excited Rossi related, “We had a good result yesterday and were confident with our dry set-up so it really was my race to lose. I had a good start, my best of the season so far, and the opening laps were pretty close but after that nothing happened.
“We still have a lot of work to do to be consistently at the top but this has definitely broken a barrier. Fabio [Leimer] and Jenzer Motorsport have done very well up until now but we will go to Brands Hatch looking for more strong results.”
Rossi is 17-years old and last year became the first American to win the Formula BMW Americas Championship and the World Finals, which will be rewarded in a taste of BMW-Sauber Formula 1 machinery at the end of the season.
For more information on this exciting young American talent please visit his website
www.alexanderrossi.com

rossi4