Monday, June 14We Break the News

FIA

Rally Kazakhstan: LUCIO ALVAREZ AND ROSS BRANCH CLAIM  VICTORIES

Rally Kazakhstan: LUCIO ALVAREZ AND ROSS BRANCH CLAIM VICTORIES

CROSS COUNTRY, FIA, Motorsport, RACING, Sports
Cristina Gutierrez and Austin Jones win FIA T3 and T4 sections AKTAU CITY (KAZAKHSTAN): Argentina’s Lucio Alvarez and Botswana’s Ross Branch survived the rigours of the final stage to secure stunning victories in the car and motorcycle categories at Rally Kazakhstan on Sunday. When runaway leader Mathieu Serradori broke his Century CR6 Buggy on the final 267.02km selective section that ran around the Caspian shoreline and deserts to the north of Aktau City, Alvarez and Spanish navigator Armand Monleón were able to guide their Overdrive Racing Toyota Hilux to a memorable career-best win by the margin of 28min 25sec. “We are so happy to finish the Kazakhstan Rally with the win,” said Alvarez. “Today was a fast stage with some difficult navigation, but we did okay. It was an interes...
Solberg secures Hyundai WRC return in Safari Rally

Solberg secures Hyundai WRC return in Safari Rally

FIA, GAMES, KENYA, Motorsport, RACING, Safari Rally, Sports, WRC
Oliver Solberg will join the top World Rally Championship class again having secured an outing with Hyundai Motorsport at the Safari Rally later this month. The son of 2003 WRC champion Petter Solberg will make his second appearance in a Hyundai WRC car in the championship at the iconic Kenya event (24-27 June), which returns to the championship after a 19-year hiatus. Solberg was set to contest Rally Sardinia earlier this month before having to withdraw from the event after his father contracted COVID-19. As a result, the 19-year-old was forced to quarantine for 14 days in Porto following Rally Portugal, as per the championship’s COVID-19 protocols. Confirmation of Solberg’s second WRC call up for Hyundai comes while the rising star is driving a Hyundai i20 WRC car at the ta...

Robson: Russell would be ‘massive loss’ to Williams

CARS, FIA, Formula 1, Motorsport, RACING, Sports
Williams’ head of vehicle performance, Dave Robson, feels George Russel would be a “massive loss” if he left the team at the end of the season. Robson has previously described Russell as being “very close” to Lewis Hamilton in terms of his talent behind the wheel, and the 23-year-old has been heavily linked with a drive at Mercedes next season if Valtteri Bottas leaves. The young Briton has yet to be out-qualified by a team-mate in his time with Williams so far, only losing out once in F1 – to Bottas by a few hundredths of a second in his one race at Mercedes while Hamilton was sidelined with Covid-19. If Russell’s time at Williams is to come to a close at the end of this season, Robson feels it would make a significant impact on the team. “For me personally, I think he wo...

Mercedes – Bottas went against team simulations for Baku set-up

CARS, FIA, Formula 1, Motorsport, Sports
Mercedes - Bottas went against team simulations for Baku set-up Mercedes technology director Mike Elliott has revealed Valtteri Bottas' flawed high-downforce configuration at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix was the driver's choice.ottas struggled throughout the weekend in Baku, qualifying only 10th before failing to advance through the field and instead falling to 12th by the end of the race to drop to sixth in the F1 drivers' standings. Article continues under video The Finn's difficulties were outlined by team-mate Lewis Hamilton's pace with a low-downforce set-up as the seven-time champion was on course for a podium only to wind up pointless after a late mistake. On the differences between the cars, Elliott responded: “Well, actually the setups were fairly similar, probably...
Kenya confident of hosting successful WRC Safari Rally

Kenya confident of hosting successful WRC Safari Rally

FIA, GAMES, Motorsport, RACING, Rally, Sports, WRC
Rose Wachuka, the Chief of Staff at Kenya's Ministry of Sports, Culture and Heritage, speaks during an interview in Nairobi, Kenya. The Kenyan Safari Rally will make its much-anticipated return to the World Rally Championship (WRC) calendar in less than three weeks' time after last year's edition was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The event, which will take place in the scenic town of Naivasha in Nakuru County, was restored to the WRC calendar following an intensive campaign led by President Uhuru Kenyatta. Members of the motorsports fraternity and other stakeholders are buzzing ahead of the start of the event and according to Rose Wachuka, the Chief of Staff at the Ministry of Sports, Culture and Heritage, it is a "moment of pride" for the East African na...
Sébastien Ogier clinches WRC Sardinia win

Sébastien Ogier clinches WRC Sardinia win

FIA, GAMES, Motorsport, RACING, Rally, Sports, WRC
After a dominant display from Hyundai’s Ott Tänak and Dani Sordo fell to disaster, Sébastien Ogier rose to the top to lead a Toyota Gazoo Racing 1-2 and win the Rally Italia Sardegna. The result sees the reigning champion extend his lead in the standings to 11 points over Elfyn Evans, who finished the rally 46 seconds behind in a distant second. After five of the FIA World Rally Championship’s 12 events this year, Belgian Thierry Neuville is secured in third in the standings, 28 points ahead of his teammate Tänak and 18 points behind Evans. The Belgian also took third place in the rally, just over a minute behind winner Ogier. Toyota will be delighted, as they now hold the top two positions in the driver’s standings and to...
Leader Tänak retires, Ogier on top in Italy

Leader Tänak retires, Ogier on top in Italy

FIA, GAMES, Motorsport, RACING, Rally, Sports, WRC
Ott Tänak retired from the lead at Rally Italia Sardegna after swiping a rock in Saturday morning’s final speed test. The Estonian had dominated this fifth round of the FIA World Rally Championship since Friday morning’s start and entered the second pass of the Lerno – Monti di Ala’ test with a comfortable 40.6sec advantage over Sébastien Ogier. He struck a rock on the inside of a left bend 8.9km into the 22.08km stage and quickly parked his Hyundai i20 World Rally Car with what appeared to be shattered rear suspension. It’s the second successive rally from which Tänak has retired whilst leading after suffering similar heartbreak in Portugal last month. Tänak's rally comes to end His demise left championship leader Ogier 17.5sec clear of Dani Sordo as competitors return...
Dakar changes rules after complaints over Audi entry

Dakar changes rules after complaints over Audi entry

CROSS COUNTRY, DAKAR RALLY, FIA, GAMES, Motorsport, RACING, Sports
A number of changes have been made to the Dakar Rally's T1 regulations following complaints from Toyota and Prodrive regarding Audi’s ‘electric' entry next year. Audi Sport's return to rally-raid caused some tension even before the German brand revealed the prototype with which it will make its Dakar debut in January 2022.  After the Ingolstadt-based manufacturer announced in November 2020 that it would leave Formula E at the end of the 2020/21 season to tackle the world’s toughest marathon, a process of negotiation and analysis followed at the regulatory level. Dakar's plans to start the transition to renewable energies next January and to create the first category of hybrid vehicles lacked a regulatory structure. Thierry Viardot, Dakar's technical coordinator, and t...
Audi signs Peterhansel, Sainz and Ekstrom for Dakar entry

Audi signs Peterhansel, Sainz and Ekstrom for Dakar entry

Asia, AUDI, CROSS COUNTRY, DAKAR RALLY, FIA, Motorsport, RACING, Rally, Sports
Mattias Ekström, Emil Bergkvist, Carlos Sainz, Lucas Cruz, Stéphane Peterhansel, Edouard Boulanger Audi has announced an all-star line-up comprising Stephane Peterhansel, Carlos Sainz and Mattias Ekstrom for its entry into the Dakar Rally in 2022 with an electric car. Both 14-time winner Peterhansel and triple champion Sainz have been poached from the successful Mini squad run by X-raid, while Ekstrom has been a part of Audi fold for almost the entirety of his professional motorsport career. The trio will be responsible for developing and testing the electric 4x4 prototype that Audi has been designing for more than a year in collaboration with Q Motorsport, led by X-raid boss Sven Quandt. The car does drive on electric power, but the battery is recharged by a combustion engine...
Loeb announces new Dakar co-driver for 2022

Loeb announces new Dakar co-driver for 2022

CROSS COUNTRY, DAKAR RALLY, FIA, GAMES, Motorsport, RACING, Rally, Sports
Sebastien Loeb has announced Fabian Lurquin as his new co-driver for the 2022 Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia. Xavier de Soultrait – a starter of the Dakar on six occasions – was also in the frame for the seat. Loeb said that Lurquin’s experience of rally raid and his knowledge of its inner workings is what “convinced” him. Both men were asked along to a private test in Dubai earlier this month to help Loeb’s decision making. Sharing the news via his official Twitter page, Loeb posted: “After several weeks of exchanges, and tests with specialist and experienced rally raid co-drivers, my choice is finally to go with Fabian Lurquin. “His approach to the race, and his experience of the terrain convinced me. The unveiling of the 2022 Dakar route last week, where navigation will...
WRC Sardinia leader Tanak “quite lucky” after late tyre scare

WRC Sardinia leader Tanak “quite lucky” after late tyre scare

FIA, GAMES, Motorsport, RACING, Rally, Sports
Rally Sardinia leader Ott Tanak says he was “quite lucky” after a tyre scare threatened to hamper his run through the final stage of the day. The Hyundai driver had been imperious for the majority of Friday, winning five of the eight stages to build up a 19.4s lead over team-mate Dani Sordo, with Toyota’s Sebastian Ogier 36.2s back in third. However, the Estonian suffered a Pirelli tyre delamination towards the end of the second run through the 14.97km Erula-Tula stage. Tanak finished 5.6s behind team-mates Sordo and Thierry Neuville, who posted identical times to top the stage. The Estonian admitted it was lucky the tyre drama struck on a slow section of the stage, revealing that these issues are always “a bit scary” to manage. “Apart from the last stage with the tyre iss...
Evans yet to focus on 2022 WRC future

Evans yet to focus on 2022 WRC future

FIA, GAMES, Motorsport, RACING, Rally, Sports
Elfyn Evans is yet to set a timeframe on securing his World Rally Championship future but is happy at Toyota and will begin to look at his 2022 plans soon. Last year’s WRC runner-up has remerged as a key player in the championship’s silly season now Thierry Neuville and 2019 WRC champion Ott Tanak have put pen to paper on new deals at Hyundai. Toyota is keen to retain Evans who would be likely to secure the number one driver status in the team next year should Sebastien Ogier reduce his WRC commitments to a partial campaign as the WRC ushers in new hybrid Rally1 regulations for next year. It is also expected that Kalle Rovanpera will be retained by Toyota. However, M-Sport is also looking for a team leader for 2022, with Evans, who drove for the British team from 2013 to 2...
KENYA: 2021 WRC Safari stages undergo final preparations

KENYA: 2021 WRC Safari stages undergo final preparations

CARS, FIA, GAMES, KENYA, Kenyan Parliament, Motorsport, RACING, Rally, Sports
The organising team behind Safari Rally Kenya has been preparing the roads for its WRC return next month. The June 24 - 27 event is back on the FIA World Rally Championship calendar after a 19-year absence. It was regarded as one of motorsport’s most prestigious and celebrated events of its time before it departed the series in 2002. Following a successful dress rehearsal at the ARC Equator Rally in April - which featured some of the same stages that will be used in June - organisers have been busy preparing the roads.  To ensure stages are in optimum condition when teams arrive, work has been carried out to define the rally route. The tracks have been graded, and earth bunds have been built on the inside of corners.  “The stages are very fast in places,” explained a ...
Former Aston Martin CEO on Valkyrie: “Verstappen was also involved”

Former Aston Martin CEO on Valkyrie: “Verstappen was also involved”

ELECTRIC, FIA, Formula 1, GAMES, Motorsport, RACING, Sports, TECHNOLOGY
Andy Palmer was the CEO of Aston Martin for six years, and during his time the British car brand, Palmer sponsored Red Bull Racing and together they were responsible for building the ultimate hypercar Valkyrie. In conversation with GPblog.com Palmer talks about how the partnership with the Austrian F1 team worked out. Before Palmer moved to Aston Martin, he spent 23 years working for Nissan. "At Nissan, I was the chairman of Infiniti, and Infiniti had a long standing relationship with Red Bull. When I left Nissan, they decided to terminate its relationship with Red Bull and that created the obvious opportunity to bring the relationship to Aston but not simply as a sticker on the car," Palmer says. Verstappen and the Valkyrie It was about more than just a partnership for t...
FIA Candidate Graham Stoker wants to ‘make a difference’ in motorsport

FIA Candidate Graham Stoker wants to ‘make a difference’ in motorsport

ELECTIONS, FIA, Motorsport, RACING, Sports
Earlier today it was announced that Graham Stoker has applied to become the new President of the FIA. The Vice-President Sport would be a logical successor to Jean Todt. "Motorsport did a great job during the pandemic," Stoker told Motorsport.com in an interview. "Now that we have put this period behind us, I want to make sure that confidence returns and we can invest again, that we can come out of the pandemic stable. Also that we are actively addressing the challenges that we are facing. I mean, the whole powertrain system, what fuel to drive with, it's more of an opportunity than a problem. It is. I want to make a difference in that way and I have the right competencies to do that. I have experience of key moments in motorsport, I've seen it up close; I've been to the Concorde C...