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March 2015

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iRacing TV

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The Team

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  • David Phillips
    Editor And Chief
    David Phillips is a long-time contributor to print and electronic publications in the U.S. and abroad, including Racer, Autosport, AutoWeek, Motor Sport and SPEEDtv.com, oversees the daily updating of news stories and assigns, edits and contributes feature material for inRacingNews.com.
  • Wil Vincent
    Contributing writer

    Wil is a 25 year old student, town planner, and sim racing commentator, most well known for his work as the lead commentator for GlacierTV. Wil got into commentating through his college student radio, where he also worked as a journalist and interviewer, covering gigs and festivals within the UK, and joined GlacierTV in February 2012, becoming lead commentator a month later. His work culminated in him commentating on the 2013 iRacing.com World Championship Grand Prix Series, iRacing Indy 500, and iRacing All Star Race. When he gets in the virtual cockpit, you'll normally see will taking on the thrill of IndyCar Oval racing, or trying his hand in GT action

    Outside of iRacing, Wil's an avid IndyCar fan, having watched the sport since the late 1990s, and always looks forward to the Month of May. He also enjoys watching NASCAR, Formula 1, and V8 Supercars.

  • Brooks Westfall
    Silver Crown Writer

    I've been sim racing since 2011 when I joined iRacing. I've jumped to many different sims, including rFactor, Richard Burns Rally, and the famous NASCAR Racing 2003. I picked up a copy of NR2003 with my birthday money when I was only 9, but was limited to a keyboard and a controller. After reciving a G25 for Christmas in '11, I've loved sim racing and the community iRacing has. I hope to end up writing for a car magazine or website in the near future, and intend on attending university to accomplish that.
    Aside from my career in sim racing and the real world, I hope to have my own small, yet functional race team soon with the purchace of a go kart. Since I'm currently residing in Maryland, I don't have a wide range of racing to choose from. My only options on a small budget are drag racing or kart racing. After the completion of my senior year in high school next year, I hope that inRacing News and other affiliates will help my dreams of writing for Road & Track become a reality!

  • Jeff Jacobs
    Contributor

    Jeff Jacobs started autocrossing with the SCCA in 1990 while a student at the University of Florida. He has competed in the SCCA's National Tour and ProSolo series since 1995, winning a ProSolo National Championship in H-Stock in 2011 driving a 2010 MINI Cooper. Jeff completed his SCCA Club Racing drivers' school in 2012 at Roebling Road in a Spec Miata. He currently writes a column for the SCCA's Northeast Division in SportsCar Magazine and is the Region Executive of the Philadelphia Region SCCA.

    Jeff joined iRacing in October 2012. After starting with the MX-5 and SRF cars, he has been concentrating on the Ford Mustang FR500S, competing in the iRacing.com Mustang Cup series and the Continental Endurance Sports Car Series.

  • Cam Stark
    contributing writer

    I began taking sim racing seriously about a year ago, but have loved motorsports from a young age. I began following Formula One first, then realized there are a huge variety of motorsports to watch. iRacing has opened my eyes even more to the diversity and volume of “real world” motorsports, let alone on the sim itself. With the huge varieties of series to choose from, you're spoiled for choice!

    Ever since I began iRacing, I wanted to improve on my ability, be it road or oval. Having not really heard about oval racing prior to November last year (blame the UK press), my mentality towards it has totally changed from what it would have initially been - it's awesome! I recently began road racing again - in the Star Mazda - and have been having a blast ever since. On top of racing the series I have the privilege of writing the articles for iRacing News.

    In all honesty I have surprised myself on iRacing. From being a fairly casual gamer/racer, it's been a world of difference, but it has far exceeded my expectations. I had a very brief stint driving in rFactor leagues, but I found my place of sim racing on this service, and I can't see myself stopping anytime soon.

  • Justin Sutton
    series contributor

    Justin is 29 and lives in Texas with his girlfriend and three dogs. Although always a fan of road racing growing up, Sutton never got the chance to participate in Sim-Racing until 2012 and didn't join iRacing until 2013. The son of a writer, and former resident of Connecticut and Philadelphia, his interests vary. Currently Sutton is a co-owner of YouTube channel focused on racing games and simulators and more specifically Formula One along with his partner Mikko from Finland (BoxBoxBoxGaming). Currently Sutton writes the Skip Barber F2000 and Lotus 49 articles (and the occasional F1 article) for iRacing News, and doesn't get nearly enough time to race the cars he writes about.

    Gaming is a big part of Sutton's life as well as he is both viewer and broadcaster on Twitch along with his girlfriend of seven years. In addition to being an aspiring writer he is a skilled speaker with a focus on commentary of races and hopes one day to do commentary for road racing of some kind.

  • Matt Holden
    Contributor

    Matt Holden began his involvement in motorsports at an early age, moving to Charlotte, NC when he was 6 months old. Growing up next door to a NASCAR TV personality, racing has always been a major part of his life. Currently studying Mechanical Engineering at UNC Charlotte, Matt works for US Legend Cars International as a technical inspector and race official at local tracks such as Charlotte Motor Speedway and Concord Speedway. Within iRacing, Matt is the Crew Chief for Gale Force Racing's #05 car in the NASCAR Peak Antifreeze Series, as well as Chassis Engineer for the team's R&D program.

  • Paul Slavonik
    iRacingNews Series Writer

    For all intents and purposes, Paul Slavonik was a late-bloomer to racing. Growing up watching NASCAR drivers such as Davey Allison and Earnhardt Sr. was the furthest extent of Paul’s racing aspirations at the time. Fast forwarding 20 years, Paul began watching the UK show Top Gear and thus ensued a fascination with all things fast. Soon after, Paul stumbled upon iRacing.com and has been hooked on racing ever since.
    A United States Army Veteran, Certified Audio Engineer and aspiring author, Paul spends his time hanging out with his wife and working on his first book. Currently residing in Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW), TX, his favorite racing series is the Australian V8 Supercars (go FPR!) and he has recently joined a local ChumpCar racing team. Paul began writing news stories for iRacingNews in January of 2014 and currently covers the GT3 Challenge Series and the V8 Supercars Series.

  • Thiago Izequiel
    Contributor

    Born in 1985 in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Thiago Izequiel is a graphic and web designer, go kart racer, aiming to get a career in motorsports. He started racing in 2007 and joined iRacing in 2010. Thiago lives in Maricá, a little town located in Rio de Janeiro state, around 60km far away from Rio de Janeiro city. In 2014 he started to write for iRacing News and also started to design layouts for racing cars.

    Working as a freelancer today, he started working as a designer in 2006. After a few years working in web design agencies, Thiago decided to follow his dreams and quit his job to work with a racing driver named Suzane Carvalho in 2011, on her driver's school. Things didn't worked out as expected and Thiago, after getting jobs as a front-end developer and social media content developer, went back to the dream path as a freelancer so he could have more time to focus on his driving career.

  • Tom O'Leary
    author

    Tom is an 18-year old student from London, UK. Tom started sim-racing quite recently, although his passion for motorsport started at an early age, watching BTCC since the late 90s. Tom has since then expanded his interests in motorsport, watching Le Mans 24hr (and endurance racing as a whole) as well as the DTM, F1, and since starting to write about the NASCAR iRacing Series - NASCAR!

    Tom appeared on the sim-racing scene by trying out rFactor, rFactor 2 and then iRacing - where he spends most of his time racing in the Star Mazda Series where he has claimed third and then second overall in the two full seasons he has competed. On the oval side, Tom has completed a few races in the NASCAR Class C (Fixed) although he most enjoys the road side. Tom is an active member of Friction Racing, a team which focuses on the Star Mazda and the Williams-Toyota FW31, with the aim of reaching the Pro Series - and the iRacing World Championship Grand Prix Series.

    In his personal life, Tom spend time with his girlfriend (they have been together for two years) and likes a variety of games and has started to livestream his races/gameplay on Twitch, to give an insight to his approach to racing and gaming.

  • Jack Davidson
    Staff Videographer

    Jack is a recent grad from Boston University with a passion for filmmaking as well as racing. He grew up playing games such as the Need For Speed series, Gran Turismo, and more recently, the GRID and DIRT franchises.

  • Jason Lofing
    iRacing.com Series Writer
    Jason is 21 years old and was born and raised in Elk Grove. California. A big time NASCAR fan, he hasn’t missed a race on Sunday in years. Lofing is also a huge San Fransisco Giants fan and tries to take in at least a couple games a year. Other than sim racing, his biggest (and far more expensive!) hobby is photography. Although he is rather new to sim racing, Lofing has already accomplished some pretty impressive results, qualifying for the 2011 iRacing Oval Pro Series in Season 1, 2011, winning the inaugural Landon Cassill Qualifying Challenge and finishing runner-up in the second one.
  • Katier Scott
    Contributing Writer
    I am a veteran sim racer who first started racing way back in 1993 on the SPRTSIMS section of Compuserve with a league who can trace themselves all the way to the present. Within that league I act as Chief Steward and try to bring the unique viewpoint that this experience gives me into my articles.
    I have a BA (Hons) in Journalism and Editorial design and have been writing for seven years and currently cover the Lotus 79 CTC and Radical series alongside my freelance work. Living in the UK, as well as motorsports I love Photography, Arts and Crafts and reading.
  • David Ifeguni
    Contributing Writer
    I was born in New Haven, Connecticut in 1988 and moved to Midland, Michigan when I was two years old. I stayed there until third grade when I moved to Farmington Hills, Michigan and now I currently live in Naperville, IL where I'm attending Metea Valley High School as a 9th grader. In the past, I have participated in soccer and this year I plan on joining swimming or water polo. My family includes my 15 year old sister, a 7 year old sister and my mom and dad. I have been writing since 6th grade and have participated in many writing contests in my school and have received several awards for writing.
    My fascination for motorsports began when I was nine. The first NASCAR race I watched on TV was the 2009 Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway, won by Kasey Kahne. My favorite NASCAR drivers are Kyle Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr, and Jimmie Johnson. I have watched all the races in the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series since 2010. I currently have three wins on iRacing, two of them in the Nationwide car at Daytona and one in the Street stocks at Charlotte. My favorite car and type of track on iRacing is the Nationwide Series (B Class) car and superspeedways.

Ogier holds early Mexico lead

March 6th, 2015

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Sebastien Ogier leads Rally Mexico after two Thursday night superspecial stages. The third round of the World Rally Championship got under way in spectacular fashion with the Frenchman standing on top of his Volkswagen Polo R WRC waving a Mexican flag to thousands of fans at the stunning Guanajuato ceremonial start. The crews went straight into the first stage around – and under – Guanajuato city, with the all-asphalt test running through a 300-metre tunnel. Hyundai’s Thierry Neuville was quickest on the half-mile dash that opened proceedings, but the Belgian was forced to give best to Ogier when the action moved back towards Leon for SS2. The second stage was a three-mile mixed-surface superspecial, running the cars side-by-side. Ogier edged Neuville in their race to take the overnight advantage, one [...]

Busch won’t face criminal charges

March 6th, 2015

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Kurt Busch will not face criminal charges over allegations that he assaulted his ex-girlfriend Patricia Driscoll, although the 2004 Cup champion remains under an indefinite suspension by NASCAR. The news that Busch has avoided criminal prosecution was announced by the office of the Delaware Attorney General on Thursday. “After a thorough consideration of all of the available information about the case, it is determined that the admissible evidence and available witnesses would likely be insufficient to meet the burden of establishing beyond a reasonable doubt that Mr Busch committed a crime during the September 26th incident,” said the department in a statement. “Likelihood of meeting that high burden of proof is the standard for prosecutors in bringing a case. “For this reason, the Department of Justice will not pursue criminal [...]

Vettel: First Ferrari contact in 2008

March 5th, 2015

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Sebastian Vettel says he first contacted Ferrari about a potential move to the team back in 2008 and has since had “secret” meetings in Maranello while racing for Red Bull. Vettel was contesting his first full season in Formula 1, going on to claim his maiden win with victory in the Italian Grand Prix for the Ferrari-powered Toro Rosso team. The German went on to win four world titles with Red Bull from 2010-2013 before agreeing late last year to join Ferrari for 2015. “When I arrived at Toro Rosso, I started greeting [Ferrari team principal] Stefano Domenicali and the Ferrari technicians who took care of my engine,” Vettel told Gazzetta dello Sport. “With Domenicali, starting from 2008 when I was at Red Bull, I discussed once and again about [...]

Stoneman walks away from huge crash

March 5th, 2015

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GP3 runner-up Dean Stoneman escaped injury from a heavy accident on the opening day of Formula Renault 3.5 testing at Jerez on Thursday afternoon. The Briton’s DAMS car was reportedly destabilised by a strong gust of wind at the fast, left-hand, Turn 7 during the afternoon session. Stoneman initially hit one wall, before sustaining a second heavier impact against another barrier that caused the car to spin several times and throw the gearbox clear of the car. Stoneman spent 20 minutes in the Jerez medical centre being checked over, before receiving the all-clear. The accident occurred on lap 14 of a 20-lap run. Although Stoneman reported no after-effects from the crash, his physio has advised him to consume some sugary food to minimise possible delayed reactions caused by stress on [...]

Manor passes FIA crash tests

March 5th, 2015

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Manor has moved another step closer its Formula 1 return after the team passed the mandatory FIA crash tests on Thursday. With former Marussia team chiefs Graeme Lowdon and John Booth having put in place the funding it needs to get back on the grid, the final hurdle to be overcome was getting the safety sign-off from the governing body. That happened on Thursday when the upgraded 2014 chassis was given the all clear – so the renamed Manor team can now join the action in Melbourne next week. A message from the team on Twitter said: “Our big news of today is that we have now passed the FIA crash tests. Well done team! That’s it – we’re all set for Melbourne!” The car that the team will race [...]

Speed to make Formula E race debut

March 5th, 2015

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Ex-Formula 1 driver Scott Speed will return to open-wheel racing next weekend, on home soil, in Formula E’s Miami ePrix. Other than an attempt to qualify for the 2011 Indianapolis 500, Speed has spent his time in NASCAR and rallycross since splitting with Toro Rosso after the 2007 European Grand Prix. His single-seater return will come with Andretti, alongside Jean-Eric Vergne, in the fifth round of Formula E’s inaugural season. The 32-year-old drives for Andretti’s Volkswagen team in Global Rallycross. “It’s been so long since I raced an open-wheel car, I feel like I am getting ready for the first day of school,” Speed said. “Having this opportunity with Andretti is amazing. It’s super cool to be able to race so many different types of cars within the team. “I [...]

2015 all about development – Aprilia

March 5th, 2015

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Aprilia emphasised that 2015 must be regarded as purely a development season as it launched its factory return to MotoGP on Thursday. The Italian manufacturer originally intended to rejoin the championship in 2016 to coincide with the upcoming technical rule change, before bringing its programme forward to this year. Aprilia has had a toe-in-the-water MotoGP involvement in recent years through private teams running the ART chassis in the CRT and Open classes. This season’s full works effort with long-time Honda satellite team Gresini is based on an upgraded version of the Open class bike, as a precursor to an all-new machine for 2016. Romano Albesiano, head of Aprilia’s motorsport programe, said racing in 2015 would accelerate the development process, though he acknowledged it was “risky” to go up against Honda, [...]

DTM challenges F1 superlicence rules

March 5th, 2015

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The DTM’s three manufacturers are pushing the FIA to reconsider its new Formula 1 superlicence system so the category is not excluded from the list of series that qualify a driver. As part of an effort to impose stricter criteria for drivers earning F1 licences, the FIA has introduced a new system whereby drivers earn points for success in junior categories. There has already been some controversy with a future F2 championship being awarded the most points, while Renault has expressed its concern to the FIA that its own categories do not carry as much weight as it believes they should. AUTOSPORT has learned that DTM manufacturers Mercedes, Audi and BMW have now also jointly written to the FIA to request that the governing body looks again at the system [...]

Hamilton keen for multi-team fight

March 5th, 2015

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World champion Lewis Hamilton would prefer having drivers from multiple teams fighting for the title, because it is “more exciting” for Formula 1 fans than an exclusive fight between team-mates. Hamilton, who has claimed F1 crowns in 2008 and 2014, says beating drivers from rival outfit Ferrari, along with his own McLaren team-mate, in 2008 gave him greater satisfaction than the exclusive battle he enjoyed with Nico Rosberg last year. “I think it’s more exciting when you’re battling another team, and growing up watching Formula 1 I think it was more exciting seeing two teams fight each other,” Hamilton explained. “Having competition within a team is still exciting, but it’s different when you’re competing against other teams – it’s better to beat the one in the team and beat another [...]

No firm timeline for Manor’s 2015 car

March 5th, 2015

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Manor says a final decision on when it will introduce its definitive 2015 Formula 1 car will likely only be made after the opening flyaway races. The team is currently preparing a heavily updated 2014 car for the start of the season, with the final crash tests due to take place this week. The focus on getting a car that complies to the current regulations has delayed its plans to introduce its bespoke challenger, with the final schedule for when that comes on board undecided right now. The team suspects that it will most likely be introduced in the middle of the year. Manor worth saving, says new investor Sporting director Graeme Lowdon has said that a decision on when to bring the 2015 car in will only be made [...]

ART completes first Mercedes DTM test

March 5th, 2015

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ART Grand Prix completed its maiden DTM test this week, as all three manufacturers headed to Portugal’s Algarve circuit for pre-season testing. With the single-seater giant’s debut in the series approaching, rookies Lucas Auer and Maximilian Gotz drove Gary Paffett’s Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Auer will be one the team’s full-time drivers in 2015, alongside former champion Paffett. Gotz, who will race with Mucke Motorsport, started the programme but was limited to just 20 laps due to technical problems. He fared better on the second day, turning 103 laps, before Auer’s 104 on Wednesday completed the test. “There were a few hiccups at the start, but overall, our first DTM test was a thrilling experience for the whole team, from the drivers and mechanics to [...]

Stockinger moves from FR3.5 to GP2

March 5th, 2015

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Lotus Formula 1 junior Marlon Stockinger will switch from Formula Renault 3.5 to GP2 in 2015, after signing as Status Grand Prix’s first driver in the series. Stöckinger raced for the team in GP3 in 2012 and returns for its maiden GP2 campaign, following Status’s takeover of Caterham Racing late last year. The 23-year-old driver claimed a pair of FR3.5 podiums in 2014 on his way to ninth in the standings. “It is really good to come back to Status and I have a lot of happy memories from our time in GP3, especially winning in Monaco,” he said. “The team are based at Silverstone which is where my European racing career kicked off and it feels very nostalgic and positive. I feel very excited to be back. “GP2 is [...]

Nissan’s Sebring LMP1 test curtailed

March 5th, 2015

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Nissan was forced to call an early end to this week’s test at Sebring with its new GT-R LM NISMO World Endurance Championship contender. The radical LMP1 ran at the Florida circuit on Monday and Tuesday before a component failure resulted in the Japanese manufacturer abandoning a test that could have continued until Friday. Nissan was piggy-backing onto an Audi test, at which the German marque had one of its heavily-revised 2015 e-tron quattros present, but wasn’t committed to running on all five days. GT-R LM technical director Ben Bowlby told AUTOSPORT: “It was actually a very minor thing, but we just don’t have a spare here.” He refused to specify the exact component that had failed, but said it was was “to do with the engine mounting”. Bowlby explained [...]

King denies aiming for Ecclestone role

March 4th, 2015

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Former Sainsbury’s boss Justin King insists his focus in Formula 1 is on helping move Manor up the grid rather than chasing a role in running the sport. King has taken on the position of interim chairman at the Manor team as it continues preparations to race in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix. Despite having been singled out in the past as a potential successor to Bernie Ecclestone, King has again ruled out any expanded role in the sport beyond what he is doing for Manor. “I have always been clear, I have never applied for a job where there isn’t a vacancy – and there isn’t a vacancy,” said King, whose son Jordan is moving up from Formula 3 to GP2 this year, during a media briefing with Manor [...]

Investor: Manor worth saving

March 4th, 2015

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Manor investor Stephen Fitzpatrick says he could not stand to see the former Marussia Formula 1 team disappear after it had finally achieved its breakthrough points in 2014. Ovo Energy founder Fitzpatrick was revealed as the key investor behind the Manor revival on Wednesday, as the team confirmed that its car would be ready for the Australian Grand Prix. “Until November last year I was on wrong side of F1 fence,” Fitzpatrick explained. “My most recent F1 experience was I went to the grand prix in Singapore with a friend, we were walking down the track at the end of the race and looking at all the fans lined up on the pitwall – and looking at garages. I said we need to figure out a way to get over [...]

Manor will race in Melbourne

March 4th, 2015

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Manor has confirmed that its Formula 1 car is ready to race at the Australian Grand Prix. The British-based outfit – revived from the defunct Marussia team – said the final hurdles have been overcome and its 2015 challenger is being finalised for the flight to Melbourne later this week. Sporting director Graeme Lowdon said: “At certain times over the last six months it was not completely clear we would get to this point. “I’m very excited to announce that thanks to a lot of hard work from an awful lot of people we are ready to go racing again. “The last few months have been a rollercoaster – and I want to say particular thanks to the fans.” Manor will start the season with an interim car, modified to [...]

Jaafar completes Fortec FR3.5 switch

March 4th, 2015

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Jazeman Jaafar will remain in Formula Renault 3.5 for a third season in 2015, moving to Fortec to partner Oliver Rowland. Jaafar drove for Carlin and ISR in his previous FR3.5 campaigns, taking three podium finishes so far and 10th in last year’s championship, before testing for Fortec during the off-season. “I had a really good test with the team in the winter, settling in really quickly and establishing a good rapport with everyone,” said the 21-year-old Malaysian. “It’s great to be getting back in the car with the team at Jerez this week and I hope that we can have a strong showing and a productive test. “Having Oliver as a team-mate will be good for me too, as I didn’t have a team-mate last year and he has [...]

Pirelli reveals first 2015 tyre choices

March 4th, 2015

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Pirelli has confirmed it will take the same line-up of tyre compounds to the opening four Formula 1 grands prix of the new season as it did in 2014. Next weekend’s F1 season opener in Australia, the Chinese Grand Prix and the Bahrain Grand Prix will all utilise the soft and medium tyres. In Malaysia, the medium and hard compounds will be used owing to higher ambient temperatures and a more abrasive surface. The entire range features a new rear construction, estimated by Pirelli as two-to-three tenths a lap faster than the 2014 rubber. The overriding aim, though, was to better distribute heat across the entire tread and reduce blistering and graining in the second year of the new power unit formula. “The biggest issue [in 2014], what we expected [...]

Yelloly makes LMP2 move with Jota

March 4th, 2015

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GP3 and Formula Renault 3.5 race-winner Nick Yelloly will switch full-time to sportscars in 2015 with Jota Sport in the European Le Mans Series and Le Mans 24 Hours. The 24-year-old Briton will race the team’s Gibson-Nissan 015S LMP2, an update version of the Zytek Z11SN, together with Audi driver Filipe Albuquerque and Simon Dolan. Jota’s third driver for Le Mans, when Albuquerque will be racing the third Audi R18 e-tron quattro, will be announced later this month. Yelloly takes the place of Harry Tincknell, who has been picked to race for Nissan in LMP1 in the World Endurance Championship, and is aiming to follow his fellow Brit into the higher category. “I’m really pleased to get this opportunity and to be able to race with a team that set [...]

Perez: Force India two steps behind

March 4th, 2015

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Sergio Perez believes Force India is “a couple of steps” behind its Formula 1 rivals after the team completed just two-and-a-half days of pre-season testing. A combination of factors, including cashflow problems and delays with suppliers, meant that the VJM08 was held up in production, forcing the team to miss the first test. Mercedes paying the team to run its reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein for two days made it financiably viable for Force India to attend the second test – but only with the 2014 car. The 2015 challenger then arrived on the morning of day two of the third and final test, with the team doing an impressive job to get Nico Hulkenberg out before the lunchbreak. “We only had two days, that is the reality and we cannot [...]