Friday, April 29, 2011

Indycar Weekend

The only major series race this weekend is the Indycar Series, who are on their first fly-away race in Sao Paulo, Brazil.  Due to a contract dispute with Formula 1, Indy is not allowed to run on the hallowed Interlagos Circuit, so iconic of Brazil's car culture.  Because of this an alternative was set up in the streets of the city, utilizing the Sambadrome (a recreational area built for parades during Carnival) and the city's convention center.  This will be the second Indycar venture on this track, which was marred by confusion last year.  In practice it rained heavily, giving the drivers very little time to learn the course.  

Being Brazil, the threat of rain again this weekend is still a real possibility.  Then the night before the race, after deciding the concrete Samba straight was too slick, it was diamond ground.  This caused a buildup of dust which formed a cloud as the field rolled through for the start of the race.  The low visibility was a factor in a number of accidents, especially early in the race.
Vital statistics on the track: It is a temporary street circuit which has seen heavy public traffic since it was paved with its race surface.  It is just over 2.5 miles long, and features 11 corners.  Surface is asphalt, the same blend as Interlagos, except for the Sambadrome straight, which is ground concrete.  The race will be about 190 miles around the course.  The track record is 1:27.74 (Franchitti) and last year's winner was Will Power, driving for Verizon/Penske.

The race coverage will begin at Noon Eastern time on Versus.  Click HERE for a spotter's guide to this weekend's cars.  Enjoy the race!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Cars Post

One of the more recent trends in car modification has revolved not around the usual areas (performance and wheels) but on the car's finish.  The classic finishes like gloss, candy, and metallics are all attractive in their own right, but the new swing strips down the polish.  These are matte finishes, also know as flat.  Previously a car without a shine was a sign that somebody had run out of cash and rattle-canned their rides themselves.  New technologies in the makeup of paints, as well as vinyl car-wrap finishes have made an even attractive matte color an option.  Disadvantages are in the life-course of the paint, which is meant more as a show finish than a daily driver color.  Tree sap, bugs, and other corrosives can be extremely damaging to a flat finish, and it needs constant care to stay condition.  
>The trend started with black cars, taking a stealth bomber approach.
>After the black proved the concept, other dark colors came out, such as these.
>And now even more bold colors are coming out.
Right now the matte finish trend is mostly in the European tuner scene, the asian VIP customizations, and the US west coast.  However as the technology gets more popular other areas and manufacturers are beginning to show their new models in a matte wrap (see the rust colored Alfa above).  Some people claim that going mainstream will kill the look, that too much of it will kill the uniqueness of the look.  What opinions do you guys have on the flat look?

Video Time!
A Porsche GT2 RS having a spin on the Nurburgring

The Official Commercial for the new Lamborghini Aventador

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Weekend Post

Well all of the major series I cover here have an off weekend.  This weekend however does mark the first of the tests for the 79th running of the 24 Hours of LeMans.  This endurance classic will be held on June 11th and 12th, over a month from now.  Right now the course, partially the closed Bugatti Circuit, and part public roads, will host 54 cars.   Teams and drivers who have never ran at Le Mans, including those who have been named alternates, must show up this weekend to retain their eligibility.  The massive turnout of 54 cars is due to a change of regulations in the prototypes, and re grouping of the classes in the GT cars.  The three top contenders from Audi, Peugeot, and Aston Martin will all be turning laps this weekend in new spec prototypes. Other cars of note are the Lotus Evora GTE, making it's Le Mans debut.  Both Oreca and Zytek will be fielding prototypes with hybrid engines, trying to maximize efficiency and gain a speed advantage on the 3.7 mile Mulsanne Straight.  Making a driver debut this weekend is retired Nascar driver Michael Waltrip, who is going to attempt the 24 hours in a Ferrari F430, after two years of racing Ferraris in other competitions, such as 24 hour races in Dubai and on the Nurburgring (Where he finished on podium in his class.
Robertson is hoping to field two Ford GTs this year at the 24

Audi's stunning R18 testing at Paul Ricard earlier this week

A lot of the comments I've gotten on the race weekend threads are Formula 1 related, so with the lack of a race this weekend, I'm posting the current series standings for you guys, all together in one place.
1     Red Bull     105    (P1 Vettel, P4 Weber)
2     McLaren       85    (P2 Hamilton, P3 Button)
3     Ferrari         50    (P5 Alonso, P6 Massa)
4     Renault       32    (P7 Petrov, P8 Heidfeld)
5     Mercedes     16    (P9 Rosberg, P11 Schumacher)
6     Sauber          7    (P10 Kobayashi, P21 Perez)
7     Torro Rosso   4    (P12 Buemi, P15 Alguersuari)
8     Force India    4    (P13 Sutil, P14 di Resta)
9     Lotus            0    (P16 Trulli, P19 Kovalainen)

10   Williams        0    (P17 Barrichello, P22 Maldonado)
11   Virgin            0    (P18 d'Ambrosio, P20 Glock)
12   HRT              0    (P23 Liuzzi, P24 Karthikeyan)

Next week we will have Indycar racing from the streets of Sao Paulo Brazil, which produced close competition on an unproven road surface.  There will also be an event from Rally America in Ocean Shores, Washington, aka. the Olympus Rally.  Until then Happy Easter.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Cars Post!

After it's release in 1998, the VW New Beetle has gone on virtually unchanged.  For the 2012 model year the bug is getting some new bodywork.  It appears they are trying to make it less cute, and the styling brings it  more into line with the Mini Cooper, and the Fiat 500.  VW has also announced they will be offering an R-Version of the Beetle running a 270 horsepower, 252 lb-ft turbocharged 2.0 liter inline-four.  This engine will be shared with the Golf R (an intermediate step between base and GTI specs).  VW has promised both of these R types to the US market by 2013, VW faithful rejoice. LINK
 VW New Beetle 2012
 VW Golf R

GM has released pictures of a special edition of their Camaro for next year.  2012 will mark Camaro's 45 anniversary.  The special edition is mostly cosmetic details, such as unique wheels, HID headlights, custom taillights, and '45' branded graphics.  Check it out LINK

Short post today, busy finishing out the semester.  Song for the day.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Weekend Summary 4/18

Was a busy weekend so I'll get right into the results.  Saturday held the first major race for the Long Beach Circuit, in the for of the multi class American LeMans Series.  Without the likes of Audi, Peugeot, and Highcroft (who have opted for an international schedule this year) the field for the prototypes was scarce, with only 4 prototypes, in 2 classes.  In the end the Muscle Milk team, a Lola chassis with Aston Martin powerplant, made an earl pass on Chris Dyson in his Mazda powered Lola and never looked back.  Team Rahal running their BMW M3 took the win in GT class in a much more competitive race.  Corvettes finished 2nd and 5th, and Risi Competizione became the first team to put the new Ferrari 458 on a podium finish.  Also the Jaguar RSR which has been a reliability nightmare in nearly every competition it has contested, race up to second place at one point, and finished a respectable 6th.

Indycar shared the weekend at Long Beach, once again taking open-wheel to the west coast street circuit.  I had expected there to be carnage in the opening laps around the high concrete barriers, but was pleasantly surprised by how well the drivers behaved.  The first major incident was in the pit lane, with Marco Andretti sliding out of his bow and sandwiching international driver Sebastian Bourdais into the divider wall.  Marco would later admit to not even knowing Sebastian was there.  Paul Tracy of CART fame has arranged rides for some of this year's Indycar races and ran Long Beach with Dragon Racing.  He would be penalized for spinning (this blogger's favorite) Simona de Silvestro.

The race seemed like a three way battle between team Penske, Ryan Briscoe, Will Power, and Helio Castroneves; and Andretti Autosport's Ryan Hunter-Reay.  In the closing stages however, Castroneves dove for the leaders, taking himself, Will Power and Oriol Servia for a spin on turn 1.  It looked like it would be down to a duel between Briscoe and Hunter-Reay, until Hunter's car gave it up on the front straight.  Then to the surprise of everyone, Hunter-Reay's teammate at Andretti, Mike Conway drove up to take over second place.  Conway in his second year is most known for being involved in a last lap incident at last year's Indy 500, where he went airborne into the catch fence, and broke a number of vertebrae, missing the remainder of the season.  Conway in a black and silver liveried car with his last name across the rear wing drove right up to Briscoe, passing him with laps to go, and pulling away, taking his first Indycar win.  Dario Franchitti would finish in 3rd, which gave him enough points to pass Will Power for the lead in the points standings.

Formula 1 was a bit of a thriller in China.  Upon starting the cars and rolling off to the grid McLaren's Lewis Hamilton detected a smell of leaking fuel, prompting his team to tear open the back of the car and change an air supply filter on the grid, moments before the start.  The valiant effort was a success and Hamilton would take his car onward.  McLaren had a great start to the race, not allowing Vettel to walk away like the first two rounds of the season.  The new compound Pirelli tires finally did what they had promised, making the pit strategy a vital part of the race.  A bit of a gaffe by McLaren's other driver Jensen Button when he tried to pull into Red Bull's pit box for service cost him time and the lead of the race.  But Vettel's decision to only make 2 stops would be his downfall, allowing Hamilton (who made a 3rd stop) to overtake him with the grip advantage, taking the win with 4 laps to go.  Mark Weber who started a dismal 18th, would pass Button in the closing stages to add a second Red Bull onto the podium.  Nico Rosberg of Mercedes had a great performance, rounding out the top 5.

For something a little different I'm going to cover this weekend's Nascar event, from Talladega.  Now honestly I'm not a fan of Nascar for the sole reason of their vehicles.  I think they are too far removed from anything on the road to still call themselves 'stock-cars.'  A Nascar is built from the ground up out of  steel tubing bent into the shape of the car making the roll cage the entire car structure.  Also with the standardized specifications, the only difference from one team to another is who assembled the engine, and how the suspension has been set up.

This weekend they ran at Talladega in Alabama.  As one of the 'super-speedway' tracks, a 2.66 mile tri-oval with over 30 degrees of banking in the corners.  This allows the cars to run at their top speeds which are cut back by Nascar's restricter plate policy (which limits the amount of fuel the engine can use at one time).  Due to this policy the car's are on a fairly level field for horsepower to encourage 'pack racing.'  This adds to the 'entertainment' factor, but is disliked by drivers who see it as the cause of many of the wrecks on those tracks.  Due to some changes in the car design and track surfaces, the driver's have discovered that by running directly in line with another car, it gives both of them a higher top speed.  This '2 car draft' is controversial right now, and from what I saw of the race yesterday is the only way to succeed on this style of track right now.  In the season opener at Daytona (another restricted track) a relatively unknown rookie Trevor Bayne won the race, thanks to a having veteran Jeff Gordon as his second car. 

2 car draft in action

Jimmy Johnson, last year's defending champion would eventually win the race, with popular names Clint Bower, Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Kevin Harvick made up the top five.  

P.S.  I just realized this blog broke 100 followers over the weekend.  Thank you guys SO MUCH!  Here's some automotive beauty to get you through another Monday.  
Head on over to for this and more cars, all in wallpaper size.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Weekend Calender

Had a busy couple days and didn't have time for a true preview post.  Here's a calender for the weekend, check the twitter feed on this page, or follow me @XPSMcLaren for live updates and flash results.  I will have a re-cap article up next week.

Saturday Apr 16
>American Le Mans Series from Long Beach, CA
16:30 (available on at 19:15)

Sunday Apr 17
>Formula 1 from Shanghai China
03:00 (on Speed TV, BBC, etc)

>Nascar from Talladega Superspeedway (Alabama)
13:00 (on Fox)

>Indycar Series from Long Beach, CA
16:30 (available on VS)

Highlights from the 2009 Long Beach Race, It's a street fight for sure.
Talladega, one of the biggest, fastest tracks around

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Midweek Post

Hey everybody, just wanted to drop a couple quick updates.  Expect a weekend preview later this week, these are just news tidbits.

>The racing circuit currently under construction outside of Austin Texas now has a name and another event.  Reports have come out the the 3.4 mile 20 turn facility, purpose designed to hold Formula 1 events stateside, had been named "Circuit of the Americas."  Also announced, Moto GP (the international equivalent of F1 for 2 wheels) has announced they too will compete on COTA when it is complete.  With events currently held at Laguna Seca in California, and Indianapolis, will there be 3 events for the bikes, or will one of the old tracks lose their place? Source

>The intended first round of the Formula 1 season was supposed to have been held in Bahrain two weeks before the Australian GP.  This was postponed due to increasing civil unrest in the region, the sport not wanting to be involved in the danger and politics of the situation.  Bahrain has been given a May 1st deadline to reschedule the race, or lose it for the season.  After the bore that was last year's Bahrain GP, a number of fans, myself included, won't be sad to see it go. Source

>Speedhunters, one of my favorite sites for car culture was busy this weekend.  They attended a grassroots event of the Irish Touring Car Championship.  In its second season the ITCC is still relatively unknown.  Ireland has never been known as a big place for racing (with only one notable track in the country).  Using production based cars graded by driver skill and lap time rather than strict technical regulations.  Running door to door in the same cars you see on the streets is the racing every new driver wishes they could do on the weekends.  Check out the article HERE

VW, Subaru, Honda, Acura, Ford, BMW and Mini are all represented in the growing series.

>Ok thats all for the updates, here's some good trippy music for your day.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Weekend Summary 4/10

It was a busy weekend in motorsport.  One event I forgot to mention in my preview was the opening round of Formula D in Long Beach.  The top american drifting series features production based vehicles with a high degree of customization, and loose rules on modification.  Anything from showroom fresh Mustangs to super modified Nissan 240s compete against each other in tandem competition to outscore their opponents on factors of speed, angle and style as they slide their cars around sometimes treacherous courses.  This weekend's winner was Justin Pawlak in his Roush powered Mustang.  His final battle was against Matt Powers, who in the off season grafted an LS7 Corvette engine into his Nissan S14.  Dai Yoshihara in another Nissan (an S13 I believe) rounded out the podium.

Formula 1 had quite the adventure in Malaysia this weekend.  Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel once again prevailed over the competition.  A near perfect start and solid pit stop strategy, as well as  a little bit of luck with the weather helped him pull away from the field and stand atop the podium again.  Jensen Button of McLaren took advantage of the same conditions in a run to second place.  He finished about three seconds behind Vettel, which could be a sign of the other teams beginning to catch up to Red Bull's pace.  Nick Heidfeld, a man who was rideless until Renault's Robert Kubica was injured in a pre-season rally accident drove brilliantly to a third place finish.  Wearing a black helmet matching the new black-gold livery of the Renault chassis he drove calmly and steadily throughout the grand prix, never making a mistake in the sometimes slick conditions.  Heidfeld's team mate Vitaly Petrov however would not be so lucky.
Mark Weber in the second Red Bull had a good result, finishing 4th despite a poor start and a non-functioning KERS boost, adding 30 kilos of weight to the car with no benefit.  Ferrari's duo of Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso finished 5ht and 6th despite a penalty on Alonso for avoidable contact.  Kobayashi from Sauber, Hamilton from McLaren (also penalized for the Alonso incident), Schumacher from Mercedes, and rookie Paul Di Resta from Forec india round out the points paying positions.

GT1 had a weekend of either great success of disappointment in Belgium.  After a first lap incident by a number of cars in race one, the Lamborghini Murcielago wove through the carnage to the front of the field.  There was turning back as the duo of Markus Winkelhock and Marc Basseng won both the qualifying and championship races.  Savvy race fans will remember Winelhock as the nearly unknown driver from Spyker F1 back in 2007, who used an early call for rain tires to lead the field around Nurbergring in a race where some of the sports top tier made the wrong call and got washed into the gravel traps by a sudden downpour.  As Lamborghini transitions to a new top flight car this year, it is a great feeling seeing race wins on the eve of a great car's career.  The Nissan GTR, which was expected to be the car to beat this year had a disastrous showing this weekend.  The two teams running the Japanese super car are running 4th and 7th in the championship.  After managing 3rd and 4th in the qualifying race the marque fell apart in the championship race.  Of the four cars entered the best finish was 9th place, the only GTR to finish the race. 

Grand-Am competition was much calmer at Barber than I had expected, with most of the problems occurring when a pack of the faster prototype cars was overtaking the slower GT class.  The GT's were the victims in these cases, with Nonnamaker's Mazda RX8 taking a hard hit into the guardrails.  The Chip Ganassi racing car, a Riley chassis with a BMW engine started slowly but made no mistakes, as driver pair Memo Rojas and Scott Pruett used fuel mileage and reliability to make a strong run deep into the race, where Pruett used his extensive experience to overtake his remaining opposition one by one.  In the GT class BMW prevailed again.  The M3 of Turner Motorsports ran it's iconic yellow and blue liveried car to the win once again.  I think the reduction of size from last year's M6 is the biggest key to Turner's success.

Indycar shared the track at Barber, running their race Sunday.  The Indycar chassis is viciously fast around this course's long sweeping sections but this gives very little room for error.  When added to indycar's new two abreast start contact was frequent.  Australian Will Power found the way to success, by leading all 90 laps of the race (a feat not accomplished since the 2009 season).  A pair of cars fielded by Ganassi, Scott Dixon and Dario Franchitti, finished 2nd and 3rd.  Marco Andretti, the third generation of that family in racing, made up for a first lap retirement last week with a 4th place finish.  Other notable drives included Tony Kanaan, who until a week before the season was not sure if he even had a ride, qualified 24th and fought through the field, securing a 6th place finish, showing that the KV-Lotus racing cars are more than just a pretty paint job.  Simona de Silvestro had another solid run, finishing 9th after passing indycar's other female driver, Danica Patrick in the closing stages of the race, this puts her 5th in the points standings.  Sebastian Bourdais, an alumni of the now defunct Champ Car series, and a factory driver for Peugeot's endurance team was supposed to compete last race in St. Petersburg, but had a fiery crash in morning warm-ups and didn't make the grid.  He managed an 11th place finish and made good passes in the backfield.  Expect his experience in other series to come to light soon in this series.

Well its was a busy weekend, but next week is going to be just as hectic.  Formula 1 on China, with American Le Mans and Indycar in Long Beach.  Also I might do a little Nascar write-up for Talladega if I get some requests.  I'll leave you guys with one last picture of those roadside sculptures from Barber, have a good week everybody.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Weekend Preview

After a quiet last weekend, the racing community is gearing up towards a very busy one this time around.  There are two races in American top-tier this weekend, and both will be held at the 16 turn 2.3 mile Barber Motorsports Park, in Alabama.  Barber was built as a personal project of  George Barber, an avid lover of motorcycles.  On the property is a vintage motorcycle museum, which is also Barber's personal collection.  The track, originally designed for bike races, is one of the slimmest road courses run by four wheeled competition, making passing a treacherous precision art.  One final note on the track is it's roadside sculptures.  Most would consider giant spiders and ants out of place at the track side, but it gives Barber a flavor you won't find anywhere else.

Saturday's competition at Barber will be the third race on the calendar for the Rolex Sports car series, also known as Grand-Am.  They are a two class endurance series, with Daytona Prototypes (purpose build closed top cars, with mid mounted engines) and GT vehicles (production bodied cars from marques such as Porsche, Chevrolet, and Mazda) competing simultaneously for timed events.  This weekend's race in Barber will last Two hours and forty five minutes (2:45), a 'standard' event for the series.  Grand Am also runs some longer format races, like their 24 hour race on the road course at Daytona and a 6 hour event on the full course at Watkins Glen.  Look for rough competition as these cars designed to take a beating fight for every inch of asphalt around the thin curves. (Saturday 16:00 EST)

Indycar will also be at Barber this weekend, running their event Sunday afternoon.  After the crash-filled event in St. Petersburg last week expect the drivers to try to keep the cars on the track and out of each other.  This is Indycar's second race at the Alabama track, however they have been off season testing partners, so the drivers who have had the time to get out a practice in the winter months should have a big advantage.  Passes here will be slight, due to the ease of defending a position in the narrows.  An aggressive driver here could cut his way through the field, or ruin the day for himself and other drivers if he gets it wrong.  Either way I'm looking forward to it.  (Sunday 15:00 EST)

Formula 1 continues their Far East excursion this weekend in Malaysia.  The Sepang Circuit, designed by German Herman Tilke.  It is a 3.44 mile circuit, opened in 1999, and purpose designed for top tier motor sports, with the ability for fans to see most of the action in mind.  The big question of the weekend doesn't have to do with the track, it has to do with the weather.  Unlike some racing where the event is postponed due to rain, Formula 1 has special rain compound tires, allowing the race to go on though everything but a tornado.  In the Malaysian heat (regularly over 90F for the race) and humidity it is already second only to the the middle-eastern desert races for driver fatigue.  Then factor in the threat of a thunderstorm, making this a race only for the strongest drivers to prevail.  Red Bull still has the advantage in car speed, but the McLaren drivers has proven their worth in wet conditions, and the Ferrari, Mercedes, and Renault teams also have enough talent in their cars.  Rain is often considered an equalizer in grand prix racing, taking the success away from the car and into the hands of the drivers willing to take risks, and able to pull it off when they do.  Looking forward to it as always.  (Sunday 4:00 EST)

The GT1 Championship holds their second round of the year this weekend in Belgium, at the 2.5 mile Zolder Circuit in Belgium.  It is a 10 turn course, sporting lots of elevation change, putting a different form of stress onto the cars and drivers.  With the series's two race a weekend format, it's hard to tell who had the advantage at the opening round two weeks ago, but after this weekend there should be a clearer picture.  Of note, Vanina Ickx, daughter of Belgian Formula 1 and endurance racing legend Jacky Ickx, will make her debut in GT1 sprint racing competition in a Ford GT.  It is always a good competition in GT1 thanks to their one hour race format, with two races per weekend, allowing one bad day to be made up for by a strong performance the next time out.  (Race 1 10:00 EST : Race 2 8:45 EST)

Well thats the weekend in racing, I will be trying to catch as much of it as I can.  Check out my twitter @XPSMcLaren for live updates as things happen, and look for a full report sometime next week. 

PS: I will apologize in advance if I get incoherent on the twitter, that 4:00am race in Malaysia is going to be a killer on my sleep cycle.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Another Music Post!

Audio is a little off on this one, but it's a good track.  Band is called Against Me! they're a recent obsession thanks to Faction XM.  It's good stuff to bomb around back roads with.

Gearing up for a big race weekend, expect a preview post sometime later this week.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A Little Bit of Car History

     A common statement among racing enthusiasts is that the first race between cars probably happened the day the second car was built.  Before we can look at the racing history, we need to look at car history as a starting point.  
     As early as 1678 there are report of self propelled vehicles.  Early attempts using massive steam powered devices that required rails to travel are the ancestors of today's trains.  Early vehicles with two, three, or four wheels were produced with steam powered drive, as well as experiments with coal dust and gunpowder driven motors.  The manufacturers of these vehicles began making long distance publicity drives, to show the reliability and practicality of their machines.  Steam cars came across the ocean to America as well.  In 1878 the state of Wisconsin offered a $10,000 prize to the winner of a 200 mile race across the state (of the seven entries only two started the race, one broke down part way, leaving a winner by attrition, with an average of 6 miles per hour).
     Just before 1900 the Otto cycle engine made petroleum (gasoline) power a viable option.  Companies like Daimler began building these engines that are mechanically very similar to what comes in a gas driven car today.   The gasoline power plant made it to america in 1893, strapped to a horse-buggy driving test runs in Massachusetts.   Henry Ford built his first 'quadricycle' in 1896.  Ford knew that he had to prove his worth against other manufacturers, and chose to do so in competition, driving the quadricycle to Ford's first race victory in a 'straight-line sweepstakes' (a drag race in modern terms).  
    Ford became the breakout of the American scene, with the famed Model T beginning its production in 1908.  Due to the efficiency of the building process, 15 million model Ts would be built over the next three decades.  Hiring the speedsters of the day, bicycle racers, Ford began putting larger and more powerful engines onto their vehicles, while reducing their size, earning a land speed record of the day in 1904 by exceeding  97mph.  Oldsmobile, Cadillac, and Dodge also built gasoline vehicles in this period.
     Whereas american car makers focused on production and sales, the Europeans built their vehicles with quality and impression in mind.  Early Daimlers starting in 1899 were more comfortable then the american counterparts, with hand built, customized bodies and luxury in mind.  Rolls Royce built their first Ghost in 1906, another machine built in low-number high quality batches.  It is considered to be the smoothest running car of this early generation.  

Friday, April 1, 2011

This Weekend

I couldn't find any races of interest this weekend (I refuse to do weekly NASCAR pieces, but might do one or two race write-ups), so we won't be having any big updates until April 9-10, when Grand Am, Indycar, GT1, and Formula 1 will all be running.  
Thinking about cranking out an article on another topic this weekend.  I could do a history on one of the series, or an explanation of a type of racing.  Any input on what I should write about is greatly appreciated, you guys are the ones reading it after all.