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Video: Tom Cruise test drives Red Bull Racing F1

He even has time to do some helicopter stunts.

Tags: tom cruise, red bull, f1, formula one, video, other

Video: Tom Cruise test drives Red Bull Racing F1
Earlier in the week, Tom Cruise spent time chatting with David Coulthard and getting comfortable with a Red Bull F1 car. Now, Red Bull has release video of Mr. Cruise's somewhat less than impossible mission at California's Willow Springs raceway.

Want to know what's equally impressive? When the Red Bull crew lets Tom take the helm of their helicopter for some stunt flying. Check out the vid below.



Source: AutoBlog

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Video: F1 Drivers Do Laps in the SLS AMG

Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg at the Nürburgring Nordschleife.

Tags: mercedes, f1, video, funny, other

Video: F1 Drivers Do Laps in the SLS AMG
There's a good reason why Formula One teams make two cars with one seat each instead of one car with two seats. Well, there are a lot of good reasons, actually, one of which is being that F1 drivers don't like riding shotgun, something that is immediately apparent after watching this video.

Even when Infiniti took Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber to the Nürburgring Nordschleife in preparation for the German Grand Prix last weekend on the neighboring circuit, they gave each driver his own car, even though they each packed five seats. Now it's time for Mercedes-Benz to take its turn, bringing its own talents to the storied Green Hell for a little fun and publicity footage.



After Michael Schumacher took his junior teammate Nico Rosberg around the legendary track for a quick tour, it was Rosberg's turn to chauffeur his employer's new brand ambassador, David Coulthard, for a hot lap in the SLS AMG. This, despite the fact that Rosberg had never driven the circuit before. Good thing DC only found out that particular bit of information after the lap was done.

Source: AutoBlog

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McLaren signs 13-year-old karting champ

And you were setting Mario Kart records at that age.

Tags: mclaren, f1, racing, other

McLaren signs 13-year-old karting champ
Eighteen years ago, a young Lewis Hamilton walked up to Ron Dennis, introduced himself and told the McLaren chief he wanted to drive for him one day. Thirteen years later he was, and the year after that he won the world championship. It was a turning point in F1 teams recruiting young talent, and one that McLaren is keen to continue.

With other teams launching similar programs, the Woking-based outfit has announced the McLaren High Performance Programme. Such a program could by itself refer to just about anything, from the onboard computer in the new MP4-12C to the three-legged race at the company picnic. But here it refers to the team's young talent program, and along with it McLaren has announced its first new recruit.

Nathan Aston is only 13 years old, but, after winning the Formula Kart Stars Cadet championship, has been signed to a new dream deal with McLaren – not unlike the deal that Ferrari signed last year with 11-year-old Canadian karting champ Lance Stroll. Give it another few years – okay, maybe more than a few – and we could be seeing the two of them dicing it up for the F1 world championship.

Source: AutoBlog

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Tony Stewart and Lewis Hamilton swap cars

Worlds colliding!

Tags: nascar, f1, racing, video, other

Tony Stewart and Lewis Hamilton swap cars
As far as racing disciplines go, F1 and NASCAR may appear to have about as much in common as soccer and the NFL; they may be classified under the same banner, but that's about the extent of it. But recent years have seen more crossover than ever before.

Juan Pablo Montoya may be the first among contemporary F1 drivers making a name for themselves in NASCAR, but he's hardly the last. Scott Speed has made the jump, as has Kimi Raikkonen. And there's sure to be more to follow. But the latest crossover just took place at Watkins Glen, where Lewis Hamilton and Tony Stewart – both champions in their own series – swapped cars for the day, just as planned.

Stewart slithered into the cockpit of Hamilton's McLaren-Mercedes MP4-23, while Hamilton climbed into Stewart's No. 14 Chevrolet Impala. The experience was a first for Hamilton, who was keen to put his disastrous weekend in Montreal behind him and have a little fun. And it was a first for Stewart too, but this wasn't the first time he drove an open-wheel racer, having wracked up the IRL title in 1997, or his first time at The Glen, where NASCAR races every year.

The track is one of the few in the world to have hosted both NASCAR and F1, making this an ideal meeting place for a bit of a culture clash, enabled by Mobil1, which sponsors both their cars.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RkHYEZvyIro&feature=player_embedded
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E46hMecVYt4&feature=player_embedded

Source: AutoBlog

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F1 U.S. Grand Prix in Austin, Texas

Formula 1 racing is coming back to the U.S. and in an unexpected place: Austin.

Tags: f1, racing, formula one, other

F1 U.S. Grand Prix in Austin, Texas
The U.S. Grand Prix, absent from the Formula 1 calendar since the 2007 running at Indianapolis, will be reprised in 2012 at a new track to be built near the Texas state capitol.

That was the substance of surprise announcements Tuesday from F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone, via the Internet, Gov. Rick Perry and other government sources in Texas, and Tavo Hellmund, managing partner of Full Throttle Productions LP, which is to stage the event. More in the jump!

The announcements made no mention of F1's negotiations with Monticello Motor Club, which already has a 3.5-mile road course in upstate New York and which received a letter from Ecclestone March 24 describing MMC as "an excellent candidate to host the FIA Formula One World Championship."

Ecclestone also wrote, "New York is our preferred venue for a USA round of the FIA Formula One World Championship. We hope that you are able to quickly secure the commitments required so that we can have our inaugural MMC F1 event by 2012."

As of early Wednesday morning, there was no reaction from MMC chairman Bill McMichael.

Nor were there any specifics about the course to be built in Texas, other than to proclaim it as an unprecedented venture. "For the first time in the history of Formula 1 in the United States, a world-class facility will be purpose-built to host the event," Ecclestone stated on the official F1 website.

ESPN quoted Hellmund as saying the track would be built within 10 miles of Austin's airport and would be privately financed.

The announcement was met with at least as much skepticism and astonishment as enthusiasm, according to various Internet forums. A string of failed efforts to land an American race since the final event at Indianapolis and the American team, US F1, which never made it to the grid this year were all cited as reasons for doubt.

Source: InsideLine

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21 McLaren F1 meet up at company’s headquarters

Celebrating the new arrival!

Tags: mclaren f1, mp4-12c, exotic

21 McLaren F1 meet up at company’s headquarters
To celebrate the launch of the McLaren MP4-12C, McLaren Automotive asked F1 owners to come down to the company’s headquarters to create a photo-op for the supercar manufacturer. A total of 21 McLaren F1 owners showed up with their rides to the company’s headquarters in Woking, U.K.

The McLaren F1 was introduced in 1994 and only 64 units were made for the streets. A total of 106 units were produced with 5 for LeMans, 3 were longtail roadcars (GT), 5 prototypes, 28 racecars (GTR), and 1 LM prototype.

The folks at CarsUK pointed out that Rowan Atkinson, otherwise known as Mr. Bean, is one of the few F1 owners who drives his around regularly instead of keeping it locked up.

Refresher: Power for the 2011 McLaren MP4-12C comes from a 3.8L V8 twin-turbo engine producing around 600-hp mated to a 7-speed Seamless Shift dual-clutch gearbox (SSG). 0 to 60 mph is expected to come in the low 3 second range with a top speed of more than 200 mph. Sales begin in early 2011.

Source: eGMCarTech

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Fernando Alonso Gets Thumbs Insured

Gotta protect them!

Tags: fernando alonso, ferrari, f1, formula one, racing

Fernando Alonso Gets Thumbs Insured
It's not terribly uncommon for famous people to insure a body part (or, ya know, a pair of 'em) that's necessary for them to continue moving forward with their career. For instance, we have no qualms whatsoever with Heidi Klum's policy that insures her priceless legs for $2.2 million. On the other hand, we're not so sure Michael Flatley's kickers are worth their reported $39 million policy.

Sports figures are also keen to keep their body parts in good working order; David Beckham's legs and feet are insured for the princely sum of $70 million. Apparently, we can add Formula One racing star Fernando Alonso to the aforementioned list, as his thumbs are now protected with a ÂŁ9 million (nearly $14 million U.S.) policy from Ferrari F1 sponsor Santander.

Says a spokesperson for Alonso, who is currently tied with Lewis Hamilton for third place in the F1 Driver's Championship:

"Alonso's thumbs are a big symbol as, apart from being essential when driving a Formula One car, they represent a sign of victory and that everything is under control and well protected."

Source: AutoBlog

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Formula 1: Alonso a Winner, Ferrari 1-2 in Bahrain

Recap of Sunday's race.

Tags: formula 1, f1, racing

Formula 1: Alonso a Winner, Ferrari 1-2 in Bahrain
Two-time Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso made a triumphant start to his tenure as a Ferrari driver, leading a one-two sweep by the iconic Italian brand of the Bahrain Grand Prix Sunday.

Second-place Felipe Massa returned to action after missing the second half of last season because of a serious head injury suffered in a freak accident during qualifying for last year's Hungarian GP in Budapest. Lewis Hamilton, the 2008 champion, was 3rd in a McLaren.

However, all three had to overtake pole starter Sebastian Vettel, who led the first 34 laps of the 49-lap race before an exhaust problem slowed his Red Bull machine.

Alonso said he was biding his time to challenge for the lead, but Vettel's problem made a strategic decision unnecessary.

Vettel, a 22-year-old German who won four races last year, ended up 4th.

Newcomer Nico Rosberg and veteran seven-time champion Michael Schumacher were 5th and 6th for Mercedes GP, the team that won last year's championship under the name Brawn GP. Reigning driver champion Jenson Button, who switched from Brawn to McLaren, finished 7th.

Rounding out the top 10 were Mark Webber (Red Bull), Vitantonio Liuzzi (Force India) and Rubens Barrichello (Williams). The top 10 finishers now receive championship points, with the grid having been expanded to as many as 26 cars. Twenty-four participated in Sunday's race.

Source: InsideLine

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First image of Lotus F1 car

It's been awhile.

Tags: lotus, f1, formula one, racing

First image of Lotus F1 car
The first Lotus Formula 1 car for 15 years hit the race track on Tuesday as Fairuz Fauzy completed a secret shakedown for the team's 2010 challenger at Silverstone.

As AUTOSPORT's exclusive spy shot of the new car shows, the so-far unnamed machine was running in the historic green and yellow colours that were so synonymous with Lotus in the 1950s and 1960s.

It is not clear, however, whether the team will keep these colours for the season or they have just been used for the initial run.

The successful shakedown of the car marked an emotional moment for the Lotus team, which was only granted an entry for the 2010 season back in September.

Having undertaken the first engine fire-up of the car on Saturday, the team travelled to Silverstone to get some mileage on it before its official launch in London on Friday.

Team principal Tony Fernandes admitted that the first run with the new car had meant a lot to him. "Shakedown started. Quite a few tears," he wrote on his official Twitter feed.

Lotus is scheduled to begin proper testing of the car at next week's third pre-season F1 test at Jerez in Spain.

Source: AutoSport

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Virgin Racing VR-01: Revealed

See what they are rocking in the grid.

Tags: virgin racing, f1, racing, other

Virgin Racing VR-01: Revealed
If you were one of the thousands of fans who surfed over to Virgin Racing's website the other day expecting to watch the live reveal of the team's very first Formula One car, you were likely disappointed. Technical glitches prevented the webcast from going live on schedule, but we'll chalk the silicon snafu up to opening night jitters. That's understandable, though, because Virgin Racing is one of several new teams that started from scratch this year to join the F1 grid.

After flirting with Brawn GP sponsorship last season, Richard Branson's Virgin group took over the start-up team previously known as Manor Motorsport. Powered by Cosworth, former Toyota F1 driver Timo Glock will team up with rookie Lucas di Grassi, who finished behind Glock in the 2007 GP2 Series.

Webcast aside, the Virgin VR-01 is a technological achievement in its own right. It's the first F1 car designed entirely on computer – using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) processors – with no models built for wind tunnel aerodynamic testing. The striking car – in red and black with a tribal-style tattoo design – is heading to Silverstone for its first shakedown before joining the next group test at Jerez. Hopefully the webcast will be their only glitch in taking on the established teams (and the other newcomers) in what's shaping up to be the most exciting F1 season in decades.

Source: AutoBlog
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Michael Schumacher will return to F1 in 2010

Shocked. Stunned. Say whaaaaaaaaa?

Tags: schumacher, f1, formula one, racing

Michael Schumacher will return to F1 in 2010Mercedes GP has confirmed Michael Schumacher as its driver for next season, in a deal he said was three years long and believed to be worth €7 million (US$10 million).

The much-anticipated move will reunite Schumacher, who turns 41 in January, with team principal Ross Brawn, with whom he has secured all seven of his world championships. He will be part of an all-German team with 24-year-old Nico Rosberg, who agreed a deal with Mercedes last month.

"The motivation I think is pretty straightforward," Schumacher said. "Our aim can only be to fight for the championship. We are talking about a three-year deal, it is not a one-off thing. We are obviously looking for continuity.

"The call I got from Ross at the end of November concerning the chance to go racing, Mercedes being involved, I felt great. I never left the race track. I was tired of F1 by the end of 2006, but in three years of absence I got back all the energy that I am feeling right now. I played around with motorbikes and I feel ready for some serious stuff now."

Schumacher was expected to return with Ferrari last year as a replacement for the injured Felipe Massa. But his comeback was cancelled after a neck injury, sustained in a motorbike test in February, turned out to be more serious than previously thought. He has recently undergone extensive medical tests, and has now declared himself fit to race.

"It is obviously a topic that I understand is questioned, and I want to understand," Schumacher said when asked about his neck. "Before I gave a final okay I made sure that I was sure myself, and I can say 100% the neck is no further issue. Unfortunately it was too close to the accident in the summer when I tried for Ferrari, but the time now is enough to have healed completely. I can do everything I used to do, and no problem."

More in the jump..

Brawn said he now had one of the best driver line ups in F1 and was confident Schumacher could challenge for the title next year.

"[Schumacher] is the best judge of what he can do," Brawn said. "I trust him explicitly and he told me he can do it. He has always been his own best critic, the man himself knows what he is capable of. I am very comfortable and confident and put my trust in Michael, and it won't be misplaced."

Brawn won both drivers' and constructors' titles in 2009 with Jenson Button, but the British driver left the team last month to drive for McLaren. When asked, Brawn denied Button was pushed out of the team to make space for Schumacher.

"We made a good effort to try to find a solution with Jenson and it didn't work out," he said. "Jenson made his decision in the end not to stay. We made a big effort to keep him but it wasn't possible in the end.

"It overlapped to be honest. I had a loyalty to Jenson but when that started to look difficult I started talking to Michael, and things developed from there. Michael and I kept very close over the years and I saw from his disappointment over the summer, when he couldn't drive a Ferrari, how much passion he still has for the sport. We're incredibly excited now about the prospect of Michael being part of the team."

Although initially for one year, the deal is thought to allow Schumacher a chance to renew, should his comeback be as successful as many expect. Mercedes is likely to be covering its bases with the big-name signing, until Sebastian Vettel is free from his Red Bull contract in 2012.

Source: ESPN

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Renault stays in Formula One

You'll see them in 2010.

Tags: renault, f1, formula one, racing, other

Renault stays in Formula One
The Renault name will remain on the Formula One grid when the series resumes in 2010 thanks to a deal announced on Wednesday. There had been considerable speculation in recent months that Renault would shut down its F1 effort and follow Honda, BMW and Toyota out the door. These rumors hit a fever pitch after the "Crash-Gate" controversy and the sudden departure of primary sponsor ING.

However, in the past couple of weeks it became plausible that Renault could stay in the sport although in a scaled down fashion. Luxemborg based Genii Capital will buy a majority stake in the team which will retain the automaker's name. The exact percentage hasn't been disclosed although the earlier speculation had Renault retaining only 25 percent of the team.

Renault will retain the engine building operation and continue to supply the Red Bull Racing team in 2010. Press release at the source!

Source: AutoBlog

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Toyota withdraws from Formula 1

And...gone!

Tags: toyota, f1, formula one, racing, import, other

Toyota withdraws from Formula 1
Toyota has announced it is withdrawing from Formula 1 with immediate effect, becoming the third carmaker to quit the sport in less than 12 months.

Following months of rumours about the Japanese manufacturer’s future, the F1 team’s parent company the Toyota Motor Corporation revealed following a board meeting on Wednesday that it had taken the decision to pull out of the sport following eight seasons without a win.

In its statement announcing the move, Toyota said that while it had remained determined to compete in F1 in the face of the worldwide recession that started towards the end of last year, it had now revised its position with the F1 spend not fitting into its mid-term business plans.

“Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) announces it plans to withdraw from the FIA Formula One World Championship (F1) at the end of the 2009 season,” the Toyota statement said.

Source: ITV

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Danica Patrick Will Stick Around in IndyCar

Expect to see her there for at least 3 more years.

Tags: danica patrick, indycar, f1, formula one, nascar, racing, other

Danica Patrick Will Stick Around in IndyCar
Everyone wants Danica Patrick. Or so it would seem, as Internet and media rumors have swirled for months that the IndyCar star would jump to a new American-based Formula 1 team or sign on with NASCAR. Now it appears she has signed a three-year contract extension with Andretti Green Racing and will continue beyond her fifth year in the IndyCar series, which concludes next month.

Patrick had already stated publicly in recent weeks that she intended to stay with IndyCar. The official announcement has not yet been made, but the Indianapolis Star reported that Patrick signed the contract for three more years in the Motorola-sponsored No. 7 car last weekend, during the Twin Ring Motegi event in Japan.

The IndyCar season finale takes place at Homestead-Miami Speedway on October 10.

Indianapolis Motor Speedway CEO Jeff Belskus was quoted by Sports Illustrated today as saying, "She is great for our series.... My hope is she will be an IndyCar driver first and foremost, even when she tries to run in other series." Patrick has made no secret of the fact that she wants to be the first woman to win the Indianapolis 500.

Reportedly her contract will let her compete in NASCAR in a limited way, such as in the Camping World Truck Series, Nationwide Series and ARCA events.

Source: Edmunds

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F1 confirmed back in Canada for 2010

About time, eh?

Tags: f1, racing, canada

F1 confirmed back in Canada for 2010
It's only been a year, but it's been a long one for Formula One fans in North America. Last year Bernie Ecclestone and the FIA canceled the Canadian Grand Prix – a regular fixture of the F1 calendar and the only stop the circus makes in North America – when race organizers and local governments rejected demands for increased fees. Negotiations failed to bring the race back, but following purported pressure from the remaining manufacturers in the series and renewed contact with officials on the ground, the race has been confirmed to return for next season.

According to previous reports, Ecclestone's demand of $175 million to secure the race for several years was reduced to just $75 million, a price which supporting parties are apparently willing and able to pay in order to bring the grand prix back to the Gilles Villeneuve circuit.

Source: AutoBlog

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FQuick Blog Staff