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Our Eyes Already Wish Lotus Would Come Back To Formula One 14
Dec
Posted by Carscoops Staff in F1, Lotus, Renderings on 12 14th, 2017


It’s only been two years now since Renault bought its F1 team back and rebranded it again as its own. But we already miss it, and looking at these renderings, it’s not hard to see why.

In five years on the grid – first as Lotus Renault GP, then as Lotus F1 – the team performed respectably, though not impressively. It won all of two grands prix, and finished no higher than fourth.

That’s a far cry from the world championships the same Enstone-based team (under Benetton and Renault ownership) won with Michael Schumacher in the mid-90s and Fernando Alonso in 2005-06. But what it lacked in substance, it made up for in style.

When Genii Capital acquired the team, it also secured the rights to use the Lotus name (after a protracted battle with the team that would later become known as Caterham). And with it, the Lotus team brought back the iconic black and gold livery of the John Player Special days – one of the most beautiful color schemes, to our eyes, ever put on a racing car.

Now that Renault’s back in control, the black and gold have been replaced by yellow and black. And that’s Renault’s right, of course, footing the considerable bill as it does for the team’s budget. But looking at this livery, laid over a modern chassis by specialist designer Sean Bull, we can’t help but wish that Lotus would come back. Maybe it will, now that Geely is in control… but we’re not going to be holding our breath over here.

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Our Eyes Already Wish Lotus Would Come Back To Formula One 14
Dec
Posted by Carscoops Staff in F1, Lotus, Renderings on 12 14th, 2017


It’s only been two years now since Renault bought its F1 team back and rebranded it again as its own. But we already miss it, and looking at these renderings, it’s not hard to see why.

In five years on the grid – first as Lotus Renault GP, then as Lotus F1 – the team performed respectably, though not impressively. It won all of two grands prix, and finished no higher than fourth.

That’s a far cry from the world championships the same Enstone-based team (under Benetton and Renault ownership) won with Michael Schumacher in the mid-90s and Fernando Alonso in 2005-06. But what it lacked in substance, it made up for in style.

When Genii Capital acquired the team, it also secured the rights to use the Lotus name (after a protracted battle with the team that would later become known as Caterham). And with it, the Lotus team brought back the iconic black and gold livery of the John Player Special days – one of the most beautiful color schemes, to our eyes, ever put on a racing car.

Now that Renault’s back in control, the black and gold have been replaced by yellow and black. And that’s Renault’s right, of course, footing the considerable bill as it does for the team’s budget. But looking at this livery, laid over a modern chassis by specialist designer Sean Bull, we can’t help but wish that Lotus would come back. Maybe it will, now that Geely is in control… but we’re not going to be holding our breath over here.

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1000HP Nissan GT-R R34 Tries To Outsprint Arrows F1 Car 13
Dec
Posted by Brad Anderson in Australia, Drag-Racing, F1, nissan, nissan gt-r, Nissan Skyline, Nissan Videos, video on 12 13th, 2017


Formula One cars have long been the benchmark of both cornering and straight-line performance and for good reason; there’s simply nothing faster around a racetrack.

Not dissuaded by this fact, Australia’s Adelaide Motorsport Festival decided to see how a 1,000 hp Nissan Skyline GT-R R34 would go against a 1994 Arrows Formula One car in a series of three rolling drag races.

On paper, the two are quite evenly matched. As you’d imagine, the F1 car has a superior power-to-weight ratio as it delivers 620 hp from its V8 engine and weighs just 515 kg. By comparison, the R34 used in the test has 1000 hp on tap but weighs a rather hefty 1300 kg. However, unlike the F1 car, the GT-R is all-wheel drive, giving it far superior traction.

Which are you tipping to take the victory?

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Robert Kubica Reportedly Out Of Contention For Williams F1 Drive 12
Dec
Posted by Brad Anderson in F1, Motorsport, racing, Reports, Williams on 12 12th, 2017


Robert Kubica is reportedly out of contention to land a drive with the Williams F1 team for the 2018 season.

For the past six months, the popular Polish driver has been at the center of one the most intriguing F1 comeback stories in history. However, sources close to the team indicate that Kubica’s long-expected return to the sport won’t happen, at least not with Williams.

Planet F1 reports that the team has set its sights on Sergey Sirotkin to fill the vacant seat left behind by Felipe Massa. While Kubica reportedly impressed during the two-day Pirelli tire test at the conclusion of the 2017 season, Sirotkin was also fast and brings with him significant sponsorship backing of roughly $15 million a year.

A deal with Sirotkin has yet to be reached and even if one can’t be reached, Kubica won’t be the back-up for Williams. Instead, axed Toro Rosso driver Daniil Kvyat is said to be the team’s second choice.

Note: Robert Kubica pictured at his recent Renault test.

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Maserati Would Be A Welcome Addition To Any Formula Racing Grid 11
Dec
Posted by Carscoops Staff in F1, Maserati, Renderings on 12 11th, 2017


Rumors have been circulating that Maserati is planning on returning to the racing grid. The jury’s still out on whether that might be in Formula One or Formula E, but either way, we’d welcome its arrival with open arms.

Especially if this is what its racer would look like. Designed by Luca Lazzini and shared via Behance, these renderings show what a modern F1 car might look like with a Maserati livery. And while it may not look as dynamic as some of the other liveries we’ve seen, what it lacks in excitement it makes up for in elegance.

That in and of itself could be enough for Maserati’s single-seaters – whether in Formula One or Formula E – stand out from the rest of the grid, especially in the more glamorous locations both FIA-sanctioned formula racing series have been known to compete.

In the end, Maserati’s presence in any racer’s livery would likely be shared with other sponsors – like Haas in F1, or Vitafone that sponsored the most victorious of MC12 GT1 cars. But as far as food for thought goes, this one’s refreshingly different.

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Maserati Could Follow Alfa Romeo Back Into F1 With Haas 8
Dec
Posted by Carscoops Staff in F1, Ferrari, Haas, Maserati, Motorsport, racing, Reports on 12 8th, 2017


It’s been nearly half a century since we last saw Maserati represented on the F1 grid, but the Italian brand could be preparing a return. According to Auto Express, the automaker could follow a similar path to its sister brand Alfa Romeo, partnering with the Haas team on a rebranded engine deal.

Alfa Romeo recently announced just such an arrangement with the Sauber team, using Ferrari engines re-badged as Alfa Romeo. Both Maserati and Alfa Romeo fall under the umbrella of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, from which Ferrari only recently separated. All three, however, remain under the direction of Sergio Marchionne.

While Marchionne remains adamant that Ferrari could withdraw from the series if it doesn’t agree with the next round of engine regulations, bringing both Sauber and Haas under even closer influence could give the high-powered exec a larger voting block.

The deal would reportedly see Maserati paying Haas some €20 million per season for title sponsorship, most (if not all) of which would go right back to Ferrari, effectively making its engines free in return for the branding (and allegiance).

Maserati’s F1 history stretches back to the 1950. Juan Manual Fangio won two of his world championships in the legendary 250F, which was also driven by the likes of Stirling Moss, Jack Brabham, Phil Hill Mike Hawthorn, Carroll Shelby, Masten Gregory and Roy Salvadori. The automaker shut down its works team after 1957, remaining represented by private teams through 1960 and continuing to supply engines through 1969.

This wouldn’t be the first time we’d see Maserati competing under Ferrari power. The Enzo-based MC12 dominated the FIA GT1 class in the previous decade with Ferrari’s blessing, though then-chairman Luca di Montezemolo is said to have blocked other efforts to put the Trident brand back on the racing circuit.

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F1 Champs Past & Present Gather For FIA Hall of Fame Induction 8
Dec
Posted by Carscoops Staff in F1, Motorsport, racing, video on 12 8th, 2017


This week the FIA opened its new Hall of Fame in Paris, created to honor Formula One world champions and, naturally, a number of them attended the event.

While the majority of the 33 champions inducted couldn’t be there in person, nine were: namely Sir Jackie Stewart, Mario Andretti, Alain Prost, Nigel Mansell, Damon Hill, Jacques Villeneuve, Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel and Nico Rosberg.

The evening started with the induction of drivers who won a single world championship, followed by the two- and three-time champs, then four-time winners Prost, Vettel and Hamilton, five-time winner Juan Manuel Fangio and, finally. seven-time champion Michael Schumacher.

“We all know Michael should be here and I am totally sure he would love to be here,” said Schumacher’s longtime manager Sabine Kehm, who accepted the award on his behalf. “He always had the highest respect for everyone in this room and he would be very honored.”

“It’s been incredible to see all these names, all these faces,” echoed Vettel. “There’s so much history in the sports, it’s still so alive, and thanks to events like tonight’s, we’ll keep it like that.”

On display outside were Schumacher’s Ferrari F1-2000, Alonso’s Renault R25, Senna’s McLaren MP4/5, Jim Clark’s Lotus Climax 25, Phil Hill’s Ferrari 156, and Nino Farina’s Alfa Romeo 158.

The Hall is situated at the Paris headquarters of the Automobile Club de France, where the original F1 regulations were first written in the 1940s, with the gallery designed by prominent French architects Wilmotte and Associates. The plan is to create similar galleries for past winners of other FIA-sanctioned world championships at the FIA offices in Geneva.

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FIA Finalizes 2018 Formula One Calendar 8
Dec
Posted by Brad Anderson in F1, Motorsport, racing, Reports on 12 8th, 2017


The FIA has just published the finalized calendar for the 2018 Formula One season with two famed Grands Prix returning next year.

On June 24, the French Grand Prix will return to the calendar and take place at the gorgeous Circuit Paul Ricard in LaCastellet. Additionally, the German Grand Prix is returning, scheduled for July 22 at the Hockenheimring.

Elsewhere, a few other alterations have been made over the 2017 season. Most significantly, the Malaysian Grand Prix has been dropped, the Russian Grand Prix has been moved from April to September and the Azerbaijan Grand Prix will be held in April, rather than June.

Next year will also see the first bank-to-back-to-back races with the French Grand Prix, Austrian Grand Prix, and British Grand Prix to be held over consecutive weekends.

Full calendar:

March 25 – Australia
April 8 – Bahrain
April 15 – China
April 29 – Azerbaijan
May 13 – Spain
May 27 – Monaco
June 10 – Canada
June 24 – France
July 1 – Austria
July 8 – Great Britain
July 22 – Germany
July 29 – Hungary
August 26- Belgium
September 2 – Italy
September 16 – Singapore
September 30 – Russia
October 7 – Japan
October 21 – USA
October 28 – Mexico
November 11 – Brazil
November 25 – Abu Dhabi

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Honda’s Fired Its F1 Engine Boss And Split His Job In Two 7
Dec
Posted by Carscoops Staff in F1, honda, Motorsport, racing on 12 7th, 2017


Things clearly haven’t been working in Honda’s F1 engine program, and Honda knows it. That’s probably why it’s not only changing the guard, but completely reconfiguring the way its F1 operation runs.

Up to this point, the effort has been run by one Yasuke Hasegawa, who has worn two hats: one supervising the development of the powertrain at Honda’s R&D facility in Japan, the other directing its application from the pit lane at grands prix and test sessions around at circuits around the world.

As Honda moves on from its partnership with McLaren to a new one with Toro Rosso, Hasegawa’s position is now being split into two, with the role of technical director (for trackside operations) now falling to one Toyoharu Tanabe. Currently employed as a senior manager at Honda Performance Development in the US, Tanabe has been with Honda since 1984, working in F1 alongside the likes of Gerhard Berger (at McLaren) and Jenson Button (at BAR-Honda) as well as in IndyCars.

The official announcement made no mention of who will run the powertrain development program back in Sakura. However Autosport reports that the role will fall to Yasuaki Asaki, previously head of Honda’s N series of JDM kei cars.

As for Hasegawa, he’s now being simply listed as a researcher in Honda’s R&D department. The changes are set to take effect as of January 1, 2018.

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Fingers Crossed The Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Car Looks This Nice 6
Dec
Posted by Brad Anderson in alfa-romeo, F1, Motorsport, racing, Renderings, Sauber on 12 6th, 2017


Alfa Romeo recently confirmed its return to Formula One with the Sauber squad and unveiled a concept livery for its 2018 race car.

However, as that livery was simply a concept, it is subject to change before the new season kicks off. If it ends up looking like this livery, rendered by Behance artist Sean Bull Design, we’ll be very happy.

The designer has opted against taking inspiration from the concept livery and instead started afresh, painting the majority of the vehicle’s exterior gloss black. On the front there are the usual array of sponsor logos and some red accents. Moving along the car and you’ll find a design made up of orange and pink triangles running along the center of the race car.

Elsewhere, there is an orange and pink Alfa Romeo logo on either side and the rear wing. The controversial halo has also been painted black and much to our surprise, doesn’t look all that bad.

When the Alfa Romeo Sauber team hits the track next year, it will do so with Formula 2 champion Charles Leclerc and Marcus Ericsson.

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Jenson Button Will Race For Honda In Japan’s Super GT Series Next Year 6
Dec
Posted by Brad Anderson in F1, japan, Motorsport, racing on 12 6th, 2017


Having taken the 2017 season off, Jenson Button has announced that in 2018 he will race in the Japanese Super GT series.

The 2009 Formula 1 World Champion is no stranger to the series, as he made his Super GT debut in August and has since reached a deal with Honda to race for the entire 2018 season, which kicks off on April 7-8 at Okayama.

“I’ll be racing for Honda and have a contract to race with Honda in Super GT in 2018. It’s been a dream for the last couple of years, I love the category. I did one race in Suzuka this year, and it got me very excited. I’m very excited about the new season. There’s a lot of testing to be done to feel comfortable and hopefully improve the package and go out next year and be competitive,” he said.

Button retired from Formula One at the end of the 2016 season, but negotiated a contract with McLaren that would allow him to return to the sport in 2017 if he wanted to. This resulted in Button getting the call up to replace Fernando Alonso at the Monaco Grand Prix, as the Spaniard was racing at the Indy 500 the same weekend.

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Nico Rosberg Is Done With Formula 1 But Is Interested In Formula E 5
Dec
Posted by Brad Anderson in F1, Formula E, Motorsport, racing, Reports on 12 5th, 2017


Just 12 months after retiring from Formula One, Nico Rosberg says he is thinking about becoming involved with racing again, though not in F1 but in Formula E.

While in Hong Kong over the weekend to attend the 2017-2018 season opener, the 2016 F1 champion confirmed that he is done with racing, but is very intrigued with the booming series.

“I’m open to explore so let’s see what the possibilities are, but I’m definitely interested. I know quite a lot, I have been following it. It has an amazing future, a great future. It is on the right track and Alejandro [Agag] is awesome as well so he is going to do the right stuff.

“No [I don’t miss racing], for me it is really done. I’m totally fulfilled and I am really excited about these new steps that I am doing now,” Rosberg told The Telegraph.

In the past couple of years, Formula E has cemented its position as one of the most important forms of motorsport for carmakers looking to test and develop electrified technologies. The likes of Alain Prost and Allan McNish already work for teams on the grid, and it seems that Rosberg could soon join them.

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Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Officially Launches With New Livery, Driver Lineup 3
Dec
Posted by Carscoops Staff in Alfa Romeo Videos, alfa-romeo, F1, featured, Motorsport, racing, Sauber, video on 12 3rd, 2017


Alfa Romeo and Sauber are opening new chapters in their respective histories as they embark upon a new Formula One collaboration starting next season.

That partnership got off to a good start this weekend at the Museo Storico Alfa Romeo outside Milan where the team revealed both its new livery and its driver lineup for next season.

The color scheme, as you can see, is primarily white at the nose and sidepods, and red at the upper air intake and engine cover. The prominence of the Alfa Romeo emblems marks not only the first time that the Italian marque will be represented (beyond some small logos on Ferrari’s cars) for the first time in over 30 years, but the welcome arrival of a primary sponsor for the Swiss team that’s been struggling since parting with BMW.

Driving for the newly rechristened team will be Marcus Ericsson and Charles Leclerc. Ericsson has been with Sauber since 2015 (when he joined from the now defunct Caterham outfit) and was believed to be the team’s choice for next season. Leclerc is a Ferrari prodigy fresh from securing the title in the FIA Formula 2 Championship, the series formerly known as GP2 with past champs including Nico Rosberg, Lewis Hamilton, McLaren driver Stoffel Vandoorne, and Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly.

Leclerc is also no stranger to the Sauber team, having test-driven for it six times this past season (and Haas several times the one before that). His role as the team’s primary test driver will be taken next year by Antonio Giovinazzi, another Ferrari prodigy who contested two races for Sauber in 2017 and was a test driver for both Haas and Ferrari.

The question is whether the talent and the financial support will help Sauber find its way back up the pack. From the second- and third-place finishes it achieved a decade ago, the team has fallen to 10th place in the standings these past two season, which for 2017 equals dead last since Manor dropped out.

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Ferrari’s Formula 1 Team Loses One Of Its Biggest Sponsors 2
Dec
Posted by Carscoops Staff in F1, Ferrari on 12 2nd, 2017


The eldest, and most iconic, team in Formula 1 has just lost one of its biggest sponsors, as Banco Santander has announced the conclusion of its longstanding partnership with Scuderia Ferrari, bringing to an end an eight-year collaboration.

In its place, the Spanish banking giant is embarking on an initial three-year sponsorship of the UEFA Champions League of football (or soccer as we’d call it in America).

“Ferrari and F1, to whom we are very grateful, have played an important role at Santander over the past 10 years,” said Banco Santander Executive Chairman Ana Botín. “We will continue our support of sport because it is a valuable way to contribute to the prosperity of the communities where we work.”

That could include lower-level sponsoring of another team or individual races, as it did with the British Grand Prix from 2007 through 2014, and the Spanish Grand Prix between 2011 and 2013.

The financial institution came to F1 in 2007, when Fernando Alonso first signed with McLaren. It followed him to Ferrari in 2010, but continued sponsoring both rival teams for several years in parallel.

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Williams F1 Driver Lance Stroll Will Race In Daytona 24 Hours 2
Dec
Posted by Brad Anderson in F1, Motorsport, racing, Reports, Williams on 12 2nd, 2017


Williams Formula One driver Lance Stroll will compete at January’s Daytona 24 Hours, joining McLaren’s Fernando Alonso at the famous endurance race.

Like Alonso, Stroll will compete in the LMP2 category, but unlike his F1 compatriot, will be driving an Oreca-Gibson 07 from the Jackie Chan DC Racing squad along with Felix Rosenqvist, Daniel Juncadella and Robin Frijns.

“Sometimes it’s nice to step back and do something that’s a bit less high pressure — I’m looking forward to having some fun,” Stroll said to Autosport.

“I’ll be out there with some of my buddies in the same car, and it’s going to be a pleasure to do this race again because I just love to race. We are the four young guns so it will be great fun, I’m sure, because we go way back together.”

Stroll has a close relationship with his three Daytona teammates. He raced alongside Felix Rosenqvist during the European Formula 3 Championship and works with the same driver management firm as Daniel Juncadella and Robin Frijns.

This won’t be Stroll’s first rodeo at the event, as he raced a Ganassi Riley-Ford Daytona Prototype in 2016.

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