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Notes from Winterfest at Barber Motorsports Park

Posted on 2/27  • 

I've been Barber Motorsports Park (Barber) at least half of a dozen times, and each and every trip I'm equally impressed at how beautiful the facility is. They are also continually making improvements and additions. As part of a $4 million expansion of the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum, they are building a bridge from the back of the museum to the infield inside of the Turn 8 and Turn 9 area. The structure will include viewing decks on both sides of the bridge and also garden seating on the museum side of the track.


The Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tire drivers and teams were scheduled to test at the track this week but the cold weather scrapped that plan. Indy Lights will be back at Barber on March 3rd for a full day of testing. Let's hope they have better weather.

Aitken Edges Tan to Cooper Tires Winterfest Title by the Slimmest of Margins

Posted on 2/26  • 

Just as Team Pelfrey's Jack Aitken predicted following the first two rounds of the Cooper Tires Winterfest at NOLA Motorsports Park last week, the outcome of the pre-season mini-series went all the way down to the wire. The first of three scheduled races at Barber Motorsports Park was cancelled yesterday due to inclement winter weather, but today's action could hardly have been hotter. In the end, the title was decided in favor of Aitken by virtue of the fact he posted the fastest lap of the race in this afternoon's double-points, 17-lap finale. It was enough to ensure a one-point margin over Malaysian Weiron Tan, who gained the consolation of winning this afternoon's final encounter for Andretti Autosport.

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INDYCAR News from around the Internet:

Indy Car drivers test local track - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social (Jan 15, 2015 11:48)
Charlie Kimball of Chip Ganassi Racing added, "Coming in 10 years after an event that was so big in the city's history, to be able to put on our show and show New Orleans and Louisiana what IndyCar racing is all about. Obviously the track, they put a lot into it. Its going to be a lot of fun; it's already a lot of fun to drive, and I cant wait to get back here in April."

Auto Club Speedway promotes executive Dave Allen to president - LA Times (Dec 16, 2014 08:38)
The track, initially called California Speedway, was built in the late 1990s by racing mogul Roger Penske. Allen joined Penske at the track in 1999 and became senior director of sales and marketing in 2002. Allen was promoted to vice president of sales and marketing in 2006, and two years later he helped Zucker secure the Auto Club deal that led to the track's current name.

Pit Pass: Mikhail Aleshin's IndyCar return unlikely (Nov 26, 2014 12:47)
Sam Schmidt, a co-owner of Indianapolis-based Schmidt Peterson Motorsports, told The Star this week that Mikhail Aleshin's financial contributions to the race team are not only behind, they're frozen. "There's a clear road block in terms of the transfer of money," Schmidt said. "We can't seem to get any." The U.S. government placed sanctions on SMP Bank, along with other Russian institutions connected to Putin, beginning last spring amid tensions in Ukraine.

IndyCar crew on hand for first Ambrose test - Speedcafe (Nov 20, 2014 10:34)
A five-strong crew of Team Penske IndyCar mechanics will be on hand at Lakeside for Marcos Ambrose’s first V8 Supercars drive in nine years. The IndyCar mechanics have been at Dick Johnson Racing’s headquarters this week completing the preparation of Ambrose’s brand-new Ford Falcon V8 Supercar. As Friday’s Lakeside hit-out is classified as a ‘ride day’, the imports will largely play the role of observers before Ambrose’s first full-fledged test at Queensland Raceway on Sunday. The Americans have been flown to Australia to provide the backbone of Ambrose’s NRMA Sydney 500 pit crew while the IndyCar Series enjoys its long off-season. DJR will field a full crew and extra pit boom for Ambrose in Sydney, rather than sharing with single-car squad Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport, but is yet to confirm a race engineer for the entry. ... “They (the IndyCar mechanics) have already been a big help this week,” added Story. “They’re experienced guys that we’ve been able to throw in the deep end straight away.

Racing legend's wife takes ride on wild side - Sport - NZ Herald News (Nov 17, 2014 20:10)
Speaking from their United States home in Indianapolis, Dixon's wife of six years says that on the road he finds gaps no one else can see. "He's so good at judging the pace of other cars and has such good timing. While other people are braking and being hesitant he just cruises through the traffic almost effortlessly," said Emma. "I'd have to say that he's a good driver but sometimes he sits right up someone's bum like he's drafting [slipstreaming] or something. He's got great reaction but the others don't."

Sam Schmidt auditions for Crash Test Dummies | Las Vegas Review-Journal (Nov 3, 2014 10:31)
Sam Schmidt, the Indycar auto racing team owner who makes his home in Las Vegas, navigated the paddock at the NHRA Toyota Nationals at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Halloween in the guise of a crash test dummy.

Latest Stories - Zanardi ticks off another milestone in Ironman Triathlon (Oct 16, 2014 15:14)
Alex Zanardi has mastered his latest big challenge. On Saturday, the former IndyCar and F1 star turned BMW works GT driver successfully contested his first long-distance triathlon in Hawaii. The 47-year-old Italian completed the overall distance of 140.5 miles in a time of 9h47m14s. He was 272nd overall among the 2,187 athletes – fewer than a dozen of whom were competing with physical handicaps like Zanardi, who lost both his legs in a Champ Car accident in 2001.

An IndyCar Champion Who Stays Sharp by Driving Go-Karts - (Sep 8, 2014 15:14)
Q. Do any of your brothers race? A. They all raced. But my youngest brother is a stand-up comedian. Next oldest from me was break dancer and now choreographs those types of shows. My oldest brother is quite strange. He’s an accountant.

Sports Media Watch – IndyCar Finale Down, But Season Hits 3-Year High on NBCSN (Sep 3, 2014 20:37)
NBCSN finished a successful IndyCar season on a down note over the weekend. The season-ending IndyCar Series race from Fontana earned 280,000 viewers on NBCSN Saturday night, down 13% from last year (322K) and the network’s least-viewed telecast of the season. Keep in mind the race began after 10 PM ET. Saturday’s race was the second straight to have a decline, coming nearly a week after viewership from Sonoma fell by 4%. To put that in perspective, the previous three races each had increases of over 50%. Despite declines for the final two races, NBCSN had its best IndyCar season in three years. The network averaged 378,000 viewers for 12 races, up 34% from last year’s 13-race average (282K), up 30% from 2012 (292K), and its second-most watched season since acquiring rights.

ALEXANDER: Fontana's corporate marketing suffered on holiday weekend: (Sep 1, 2014 22:00)
"We lost our entire corporate backing," track president Gillian Zucker said. "... I mean, corporate sales are a huge part of sports marketing, any sport you look at. It's not just the suites. It's hospitality. People end up sitting in the grandstand after having gone to a (hospitality) tent or heard part of a meeting or a presentation. A lot of companies support team building that they do at sporting events, or (use tickets as) prizes for sales people, so there's a pretty healthy corporate market out there that sporting events rely on. And so to do it on a weekend like this and have it completely eliminated, it makes it difficult."