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NEW RACING REPORT DEALS A MAJOR BLOW TO SANDOWN

20. May 2016

NEW RACING REPORT DEALS A MAJOR BLOW TO SANDOWN

SALE LIKELY WITHIN "ONE TO THREE YEARS"

In a major blow to the future of racing at Sandown, a report by Horse Racing's governing body Racing Victoria has recommended the sale of the circuit as well as the closure and sale of Moonee Valley. The report which was tabled to the three Melbourne Horse Racing Clubs also recommends the relocation of training facilities to outer suburban and regional areas including Pakenham. This could be yet another blow to plans to build a motorsport circuit in the Pakenham region with trainers unlikely to be impressed by the noise generated by motorsport near their multi-million dollar equine assets.

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DRAGONSPEED ON POLE FOR IMOLA ELMS: Watch LIVE

15. May 2016

DRAGONSPEED ON POLE FOR IMOLA ELMS: Watch LIVE

The grid for the 4 Hours of Imola has been decided with pole position going to Nicolas Lapierre in the no21 Dragonspeed Oreca-Nissan in an exciting qualifying session that saw the top four cars split by just 0.044 seconds. Lapierre, who is the current 24 Hours of Le Mans LMP2 class champion, set a lap time of 1m33.780, beating the previous best qualifying lap at Imola by two tenths of a second and was just ahead of the no46 Thiriet by TDS Racing Oreca05-Nissan to give the French manufacturer a front row lockout. Ligier will fill row two for tomorrow’s race with the no23 Panis Barthez Competition finishing 3rd with Paul Loup Chatin just ahead of Olivier Pla in the no40 Krohn Racing Ligier. WATCH THE RACE LIVE The grid for the 4 Hours of Imola has been decided with pole position going to Nicolas Lapierre in the no21 Dragonspeed Oreca-Nissan in an exciting qualifying session that saw the top four cars split by just 0.044 seconds. Lapierre, who is the current 24 Hours of Le Mans LMP2 class champion, set a lap time of 1m33.780, beating the previous best qualifying lap at Imola by two tenths of a second and was just ahead of the no46 Thiriet by TDS Racing Oreca05-Nissan to give the French manufacturer a front row lockout. Ligier will fill row two for tomorrow’s race with the no23 Panis Barthez Competition finishing 3rd with Paul Loup Chatin just ahead of Olivier Pla in the no40 Krohn Racing Ligier. WATCH THE RACE LIVE

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ASIA GT SERIES KICKS OFF IN KOREA

14. May 2016

ASIA GT SERIES KICKS OFF IN KOREA

After a two-day layoff following the official pre-season test earlier in the week, the 2016 GT Asia Series officially fired up with three one-hour practice sessions at Korea International Circuit, with all the teams laying their cards on the table as they worked to develop a benchmark from which to attack for the opening round. Ultimately what we saw was that many of the teams spent their time developing their cars. Some - like the all new Type 991 Porsche GT3-R of Philip Ma and Tim Sugden - turned their first ever laps at a race circuit, whilst others - like the three-car Absolute Team Bentley operation - took their experiences from 2015 and applied them to great effect. Perhaps the biggest surprise though was the pace of reigning champions Craft-Bamboo Racing. Campaigning two all-new Porsche GT3-Rs, the multiple GT Asia Series race winners ended the day with the fastest time, Richard Lyon’s 2:07.097 in the closing stages of session three, just half a second shy of Andrea Caldarelli’s 2014 lap record of 2:06.484. Frustrating too for their rivals, were their thoughts that they still had a lot to learn from the new cars, and that there was more pace to come..

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PANIS BARTHEZ SETS THE EARLY PACE AT IMOLA ELMS: Watch Qualifying Live

14. May 2016

PANIS BARTHEZ SETS THE EARLY PACE AT IMOLA ELMS: Watch Qualifying Live

The Panis Barthez Competition Ligier-Nissan driven by former ELMS champion Paul Loup Chatin was at the top of the timing screens after the first session of free practice at Imola for the latest round of the European Le Mans Series. With a 1m34.435 lap with five minutes left on the clock Chatin finished the session 0.805s ahead of the no33 Eurasia Motorsport Oreca-Nissan of Tristan Gommendy, with the no46 Thiriet by TDS Racing Oreca third quickest, 1.1s behind the fastest car and 0.3s ahead of the Murphy Prototypes Oreca. Silverstone race winners G-Drive Racing were sixth fastest with Giedo Van Der Garde setting a 1m36.032 lap, just 0.1 behind reigning champion Bjorn Wirdheim in the no40 Krohn Racing Ligier in fifth overall. The session was interrupted by two Full Course Yellows and then was cut short with just over two minutes showing on the clock when the no48 Murphy Prototypes Oreca-Nissan went off at Turn 15 and was left stranded in a potentially dangerous position. The Race Director decided to show the red flag so the car could be recovered safely. The LMP3 time sheets were led by the no11 Eurointernational Ligier-Nissan, with Giorgio Mondini heading the large 20 car entry for the LMP3 class by setting a 1m40.099, just 0.069 ahead of Alex Brundle in the no2 United Autosports Ligier. The Silverstone race winners were just 0.103 ahead of the third fastest car, the no19Duqueine Engineering Ligier of Dino Lunardi. In LMGTE it was the no66 JMW Motorsport Ferrari 458 of Andrea Bertolini who topped the class in 26th overall, 0.316s and four places ahead of the nearest rival, the no60 Formula Racing Ferrari of Mikkel Mac, the Dane, and reigning LMGTE Champion, setting a 1m42.578 lap. The third placed car was the no88 Proton Competition Porsche of Klaus Bachler, 0.096s ahead of the no51 AF Corse Ferrari of Rui Aguas. Aguas’ Italian teammate Marco Cioci was driving with a broken foot but the Italian still managed to post the sixth best time in LMGTE during the session. Qualifying for the 4 Hours of Imola will take place tonight at 9:35 PM AEST with live streaming available right here on In Pit Lane.COM

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PERERA ON POLE FOR BRANDS HATCH BLANCPAIN GT SPRINT: Watch both races LIVE

8. May 2016

PERERA ON POLE FOR BRANDS HATCH BLANCPAIN GT SPRINT: Watch both races LIVE

Franck Perera will start from pole position for the Blancpain GT Series Sprint Cup qualifying race after a close fought qualifying at Brands Hatch. The Frenchman, driving the #74 ISR Audi R8, was less than one tenth quicker than HTP Motorsport Mercedes-AMG drivers Jules Szymkowiak and Jazeman Jaafar. Morgan Moullin-Traffort in the #87 AKKA ASP Mercedes-AMG was fastest of the Pro-Am drivers, while Luca Stolz’s #19 Grasser Racing Team Lamborghini ended up quickest in Silver Cup. Despite the threat of rain in the early afternoon, qualifying was run in sunny conditions. The first two parts of qualifying were largely incident-free, but with 24 cars circulating within a second and only 19 going through to Q3, there were always going to be tears for some of the favourites and outsiders. One of the more notable contenders not to make the cut was the Misano Qualifying Race-winning #8 Bentley Team M-Sport Continental of Maxime Soulet and Andy Soucek. The Belgian-Spanish duo, who are currently fifth in the overall driver standings, will start Sunday's qualifying race from 24th. In Q3 finding a clear lap was crucial. And Perera, did just that. His 1m23.260s was enough to give the Czech team its first pole position since joining the Blancpain GT Series. “I have no real experience of this track but we have worked really hard, both here and during pre-season, to get on top of the new car." he said. Obviously Marlon is new to GT racing but we have just done our best in a short space of time to catch the guys ahead. Qualifying at the front here is really important because it is so difficult to overtake. The aim is to win and the car is good, especially over a stint. I am really confident that we have the pace to win tomorrow’s race.”

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PORSCHE No.1 IS No.1 AT SPA : Includes Video

7. May 2016

PORSCHE No.1 IS No.1 AT SPA : Includes Video

The two Porsche 919 Hybrids will start from the front row for the second round of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC). The reigning world champions Timo Bernhard (DE), Brendon Hartley (NZ) and Mark Webber (AU) claimed pole position with their number 1 car for Saturday’s six-hour race. Next to them on the grid in Spa-Francorchamps (BE) is the sister-car number 2 of Romain Dumas (FR), Neel Jani (CH) and Marc Lieb (DE). “I managed to put a pretty good lap together and Timo did almost the same lap time. But we didn’t expect such a gap." said Hartley. "In the first practice session we were not happy with the balance of the car and the improvement since is a great team effort. We have now scored our first championship point for pole and want full points tomorrow. That’s the goal. After my accident in Silverstone our championship title defence starts here in Spa.” In the WEC the average of the respective best laps of two drivers counts for the grid position. In Spa Bernhard/Hartley (car number 1 / 1:55.793 minutes) and Jani/Lieb (car number 2 / 1:56.590 minutes) were the qualifying drivers. It is the first pole position in 2016 for the 919 and its 13th pole since the prototypes’ debut in 2014. For the Bernhard/Hartley/Webber trio it is the 7th pole position in total. Due to higher track temperatures the pole time of Bernhard/Hartley was one second slower than their pole time from last year (1:54.767 minutes).

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6. May 2016

TOYOTA FAST IN PRACTICE BUT PORSCHE STILL NO. 1 IN SPA.

TOYOTA FAST IN PRACTICE BUT PORSCHE STILL NO. 1 IN SPA.

The promise of straight-line speed for the new Toyota’s that was hinted at Silverstone has realise in early running for this weekend’s Spa 6 Hour Race, Round Two of the FIA World Endurance Championship.
The new Toyota TS 050 HYBRID made it a 1-2 sweep of Free Practice 2. Kazuki Nakajima’s time of 1m58.556s heads teammate Stephane Sarrazin’s 1m58.711s around the famous Belgian circuit with Porsche third and fourth.
However the Porsches still set the quickest time of the day with a 1:58.012 by Brendon Hartley.
It was a tough day for Audi as No.7 driven by Marcel Fassler in fifth and the No.8 R18 failing to take part after technical problems.

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20. November 2015

POMMER POWERS TO PRACTICE POLE AT MACAU

Markus Pommer edged out provisional pole position man Felix Rosenqvist in final practice for the Suncity Group Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix on Friday, as he produced the fastest lap of the event so far.

The Motopark driver moved to the top of the timesheets just past the halfway point of the 40-minute session, and then set about delivering a series of quicker laps to produce the fastest time of 2m11.103 seconds in the closing minute.

SJM Theodore Racing by Prema’s Rosenqvist, who had been fastest overall in first qualifying, could not quite match his German rival, who was particularly strong in the second sector.

But, after ending up 0.321 seconds behind, Rosenqvist is still well placed to defend his top spot in the afternoon’s final qualifying session.

Van Amersfoort Racing’s Charles Leclerc, who briefly topped the timesheets early on, ended up third quickest ahead of Carlin’s Antonio Giovinazzi, whose team had fixed the brake problem that ended his qualifying run early on Thursday.

Prema’s Lance Stroll recovered from an incident at the Melco Hairpin, where he had run straight on in to the barriers, to set the fifth fastest time as he continued to build up his pace on his first visit to Macau.

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23. October 2015

POPULAR DRIVER CRITICAL AFTER PHILLIP ISLAND FIRE

Popular Touring Car Masters and Australian GT driver Keith Kassulke is in a serious condition in the Alfred Hospital after a fiery crash in practice for this weekend’s Victorian State Circuit Racing Championships at Phillip Island.
Mr Kassulke was air-lifted to Melbourne’s Alfred hospital after suffering significant burns.
He was driving his Ascari KZ1R GT3 for this weekend’s Victorian Sportscar Championship final round.
An enthusiastic part time racer, he is also a regular on the International long distance Sports Car racing scene, most recently driving in Ryan McLeod’s Queensland-built Focus V8s in the Creventic series.
He recently scored a class victory in the Dubai 24 Hour.
Kassulke also drives a fast XB Falcon Coupe in the popular Touring Car Masters.
CAMS has commenced an investigation into the incident.
Keith and the Ascari were a featured story on In Pit Lane last year and the thoughts of all our cast and crew go out to Keith and his family at this very difficult time.

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19. September 2015

GT MASTERS ANOTHER POLE FOR PORSCHE

The tension continues to build in the ADAC GT Masters title chase. On the penultimate race weekend of the season at Zandvoort in the Netherlands, championship leaders Sebastian Asch (29, DEU) and Luca Ludwig (26, DEU/both Team Zakspeed) in the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG are coming under intense pressure from their two closest pursuers driving a Porsche and a BMW respectively. In qualifying at Zandvoort, the main rivals of the Mercedes-Benz duo for the 2015 title shared out the two pole positions between themselves. First place on the grid for Saturday´s race went to Martin Ragginger (27, AUT) who is supporting the challenge of second-placed Klaus Bachler (24, AUT/both GW IT Racing Team Schütz Motorsport), his co-driver in the Porsche 911. On Sunday, it will be the turn of third-placed Jens Klingmann (25, DEU) and Dominik Baumann (22, AUT/both BMW Sports Trophy Team Schubert) in their BMW Z4 to start from the front. “The cooler weather conditions are helping us here,” said Ragginger. “If it stays this way, we have a good chance of converting the pole into a victory.” Ludwig and Asch go into the two races on the former F1 circuit in the North Sea dunes from grid positions three and nine respectively.
WATCH SATURDAY’S RACE LIVE HERE….

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24. August 2015

MERCEDES 1-2 BUT LOTUS THIRD AT SPA

MERCEDES 1-2 BUT LOTUS THIRD AT SPA

Lewis Hamilton has started the second half of the season with a dominant win over teammate Nico Rosberg at the Belgian Grand Prix.

Hamilton nailed his start under the new clutch regulations while the field behind him bunched up at the first turn.

The championship leader, who stretched his advantage to 28 points over Rosberg with the collection of another Mercedes one-two finish, survived a temporary scare when Sergio Perez passed him down the Kemmel straight, but the Briton wrested the place back in the second sector before streaking away in the lead.

“For me, an amazing weekend,” said Hamilton. “Today was a dream. The whole weekend the car was fantastic.

“Again, an incredible job done by the team throughout the whole weekend.

“Nico obviously had good pace, but I was able to answer most of the time.”

Rosberg dropped down to fifth place, letting Sergio Perez, Daniel Ricciardo and Valtteri Bottas jump him over the line, cutting his work out for him.

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23. November 2014

FORMULA E MALAYSIA: BIRD IS THE WORD

FORMULA E MALAYSIA: BIRD IS THE WORD

Sam Bird cruised to victory in the 2014 FIA Formula E Ycapital Management Putrajaya ePrix ahead of championship-leader Lucas di Grassi and Sebastien Buemi. The Virgin Racing driver crossed the line to pick up the full 25 points and clinch his maiden ePrix win. Bird dedicated his win to former GP2 team-mate Jules Bianchi, who […]

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