Le Mans – Triumph, Agony and Controversy

Through various racing-related (or racing-adjacent) connections, I’ve been fortunate to gain a number of friends and acquaintances, all of whom I enjoy discussions about racing. One of my fellow “chatnecks” (an inside joke among one subgroup) wrote up his account of this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.  Thanks speeddemon787!   You can’t make this stuff up for this year’s 24 Hours of LeMans with Porsche winning the overall race for the second year in a row.   How can you feel about Toyota’s devastating lost after dominating most of the…

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Ryan Millen Debuts New Rally RAV4 at Idaho Rally

Massive thanks to our friend Matt Kalish for providing this in-depth interview with one of rally’s most legendary racing family members.   Ryan Millen: “It kind of feels like a perfect fit.“   When a driver named Millen decides to enter a rally in the United States big things are expected to follow. Ryan Millen, son of rally champion Rod and brother of Pike’s Peak legend Rhys has made a name in desert racing, most notably winning the 2014 running of the Baja 1000 in a Toyota Tundra. This weekend, he…

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RALLY – They’re Baaaaack! Toyota to Return to WRC in 2017!

Today’s highly anticipated motorsports announcement from Japan didn’t disappoint.  President Akio Toyoda went on stage and told the rallying world what we had all hoped was true, that Toyota was returning to the WRC beginning in 2017.  That makes 4 full auto manufacturers and one “pseudo” manufacturer (MSport) competing at the top level of the sport. Akio Toyoda said that his visit to Finland was a big influence on him as many fans asked him when Toyota would return to the WRC.  The last time Toyota was in the WRC…

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Rally – 2014 Rally in the 100 Acre Wood Preview

Round 2 of the Rally America National Championship gets underway this Friday and Saturday at what is traditionally the fastest event of the season, The Rally in the 100 Acre Wood.  Wide roads with firmly packed dirt make for high speeds with drivers frequently butting up against the rev-limiter.  Last year such speeds weren’t possible as a freak storm pounded the area with ice pellets and freezing temperatures that turned the event into Sno*Drift 2.0.  That won’t be the case for 2014 though as the forecast is showing temps in…

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World’s First? – Gravel Spec GT86 to Compete in Nameless Performance Rally

The rally world has been moving towards compact and fuel efficient 2wd cars in the last few years. This makes the sport more affordable for teams and are more relevant to what the manufacturers are selling. A good example would be the Ford Fiesta ST. As good as these cars are, many fans have said that this new era has taken away some of the “ spectacle” of rally racing and long for the days in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s when the rear wheel drive Ford Escort Mark II…

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IndyCar-Turning Laps With Ease: Sato Takes Long Beach

After many near misses, Takuma Sato finally took his maiden victory in the IZOD IndyCar Series on the Streets of Long Beach this past Sunday, holding off Graham Rahal in his best result to date for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing. Justin Wilson captured his first podium of the season in Third Position for Dale Coyne Racing. The win is AJ Foyt Enterprises’ first win since Airton Dare finished first at Kansas Speedway on July 7, 2002. The last Road/Street course victory for the team came at the Silverstone Circuit in…

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IndyCar – Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Preview

By: Kevin Neely The Questions What? Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Where? Streets of Long Beach, California When? April 15 3:30pm EDT Who? IZOD IndyCar Series Why? Why not! The Circuit The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach circuit is a 1.968 mile street course running through the Long Beach community near Los Angeles. The circuit consists of eleven turns surrounding the Long Beach Convention Center. The frontstretch and pit area are located on Shoreline Drive, falling right after the iconic hairpin turn, Turn Eleven. The current circuit used…

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WEC – Toyota Answers the Call

The new FiA World Endurance Championship (WEC) received a much needed shot in the arm today as Toyota officially announced their “entry” in this year’s maiden championship. The new TS030 HYBRID will still compete with a single entry at Spa and two machines at Le Mans as originally planned with maybe more on the schedule. The news was announced today and now gives the FiA the two manufacturers needed in the LMP1 division. This will put Toyota one on one with Audi for sports car supremacy. No small order to say…

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Episode 109 – OpenPaddock.net Podcast

Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: Android | Google Podcasts | RSSJoin Shaun and Mike as they discuss this week’s motorsport news. This week we look back very briefly at the tragic events of Las Vegas and pay respects to Dan Wheldon and Shaun briefly pays respects to MotoGP star Marco Simoncelli. We also take a look back at Rally Spain and look ahead to Rally GB. Mike also leads us into discussion on Formula 1 and the empty space that is Korea. As always, thank you for the…

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Episode 67 – Openpaddock.net Podcast

Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: Android | Google Podcasts | RSSJoin the Paddock boys this week as we talk Toyota and Le Mans, Solberg in Mote Carlo, and wrap up Penske’s sponsorship shopping spree. We stay clear of 151c violations for the most part but Paris Hilton nearly ruins that. Sit back as always and enjoy the show!

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