Where is…?

There seems to be a balance of events and personalities in motor racing this week. Replacements have been replaced while in other areas a vacuum has been created. With that we’ll simply look at where things are…

Where is Kurt Busch? He is back in the Stewart-Haas #41 for his first race of the season. Busch has been out while Regan Smith has been filling the seat. A “racas” with Busch and his former lady acquaintance led to courts and speculations and suspensions. The courts and speculations still float about while the suspension has been lifted with a lack of actual criminal charges while Busch maintains his faith in the truth and his team.

Where is Regan Smith? He is back and, one would assume, focused on his task of racing the #7 in the Xfinity series. He finished his ride in the #41 with 3 consecutive top-20 finishes.

Where is Kyle Busch? Still recovering from his leg injuries suffered in the Xfinity series Daytona opener.

Where is Kevin Harvick? Out in front. The defending champion is top of the points with and early season win and on pole for the start in Phoenix.

Where is Joey Logano? Off the points lead he held for the first 2 races after his win of the Daytona 500. He did, however, win the Xfinity race at Phoenix.

Formula 1 has started their season in Australia…

Where is Lewis Hamilton? Winning, again… He won in Australia.

Where is Nico Rosberg? Right behind Hamilton…

Where is Sebastion Vettel? Not in a Red Bull car… Vettel is in a Ferrari for 2015 and finished 3rd in the season opener.

Where is Fernando Alonso? Not in Australia. Not in a Ferrari. Alonso is now with McLaren-Honda but, somewhat similar to Kyle Busch of NASCAR, is recovering from a pre-season crash. He has said he will be on track for the next race in Malaysia but that is still on the desk of medical advisers and race officials.

These brief insights into the most watched racing series of the United States and Europe may be overshadowed by a question on the minds of automotive enthusiasts the world over.

Where is Jeremy Clarkson? Clarkson apparently had a “racas” with a producer after a day of filming allegedly over a lack of proper food for the crew. Harsh words and a reported instance of striking the producer have left Clarkson at odds with the BBC backers of the popular “Top Gear” motoring show. The BBC has suspended Clarkson and pulled the remaining “Top Gear” shows of the current season while an investigation is in ongoing. The future of the show could be in the garage. However, there is an enormous amount of revenue from the show that also hangs in the balance along with the jobs of the crew behind the scenes which must also be substantial.

We will get Kyle Busch back into NASCAR. We’ll get Fernando Alonso back into F1. We already have Kurt Busch back in the #41 for Phoenix and he allegedly hit a woman. What of Jeremy Clarkson and the future of “Top Gear”?

He allegedly only hit a producer…. How hard can it be?

You’ve been looking forward to this party for a month. You’re all dressed up, new shirt, haircut, fresh undies… the works. Before you even get a chance to get your first cocktail or even a cocktail weenie, someone comes flying through the line trying to get forward before things settles in…

Now you are on the floor in a puddle of punch and spilled salsa. All of your prep and style gone before the first move even had a shot. The mess includes a pile of other people, cups, dishes, a chair or two and a scramble of folks dashing to avoid the splatter of salads and sundries.

All you can do is pick yourself up, gather your composure as best you can, bow to your host and make the exit. (more…)

No NASCAR Sprint Cup this weekend? Whatever will you do…?

You could watch the Nationwide series race. Some of you will. Maybe not all of it. Maybe long enough to see a spin or crash and blame it on Danica Patrick…

However, you could expand your horizon a bit and watch Formula 1 from Germany and American Le Mans from Canada. You could also catch up with IndyCar, also racing in Canada, and see how they are getting along without Danica… (more…)

We missed some racing.

But then… We missed a lot of things…  Air conditioning, refrigeration, lights, computer, internet, television…

We were luckier than many as we had hot and cold running water. Natural gas for the water heater…  Some had no running water at all.

Yes. The storm along the eastern United States got us. The last thing on the television was qualifying from Sparta, KY. High winds shut it down. Bits of pop-up tents were flying around the infield and garage area sweeping up setup notes, driver caps and SPEED personality scripts. At the time that seemed a bit unusual. Unusual to the point that we checked online for the weather in the area of Sparta. It was a storm with an arc of color indicating heavy rain moving across Ohio and northern Kentucky.

“Hmmm – That is interesting” and “Wow” and “Sucks for them” were pretty much the thoughts at the time. (more…)

Advertising drives racing. The cars have sponsors. The race has sponsors. The TV and radio broadcasts have sponsors. We expect it and accept it. Watching F1 and the Monaco Grand Prix we’re in awe at the beauty and diversity of the city and the view. The Marina is filled with blue sea and watercraft of every design. The cityscape rises set against the view of the hills. The sponsor banners line the streets with every color.

At best, they present a subliminal impact as they eye is drawn to the speed and road clinging action of open wheel power amidst the tight turns and narrow straights that make up the course in this showcase city with French and Italian influence.
There is a flash of Johnnie Walker, UBS, Pirelli, Shell V-Power, DHL and Zepter. We don’t know what Zepter is but from the tunnel we get flashes of “Home Art” and “Cosmetics”. (more…)

Renault and Mercedes are trading jabs so far in F1. Bahrain was all Renault in the top 4 slots. Mercedes in the 5th and 6th slots. The previous week in China it was Mercedes in the top 3 followed by Renault in the next five slots. The season opener in Australia traded spots among the two, with Mercedes in first and third and Renault in second and fourth.

Those upstarts with Ferrari took the top two slots in Malaysia. However, third through seventh were Mercedes and Renault. (more…)