The Tour de France has been on. We’ve been somewhat focused on it. It has been a remarkable year for the sport of professional cycling which is racing to re-establish credibility as the cyclists themselves turn over the pedals up every mountain and through every shoulder to shoulder sprint. Cycling, for many years, has been plagued with accusation, secrecy, cover-ups and penalties surrounding the use of performance enhancing drugs and other “illegal” actions.

It came to a head earlier this year just weeks before the Tour started. Lance Armstrong, who claimed 7 Yellow Jersey wins of the Tour de France, was caught in an unescapable vise of accusation and indictment. After years of standing on the claims of never failing a drug test and no real evidence that could taint his record he was caught in a conspiracy outlined by former team mates and others closest to him. Coercion, power, drugs and even blood transfusions and alleged payoffs all came upon Armstrong like the peloton chasing down a failed breakaway. (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…)

Off track drama is like glaze on a steak. It is an additional aspect that flavors the conversation but rarely takes the focus away from the main course. However, as NASCAR made the return to Daytona for mid-season racing the off track activities overwhelmed the run of the race.

Tony Stewart gave it a run to shift attention back to the race as the defending Cup champion drove from the back of the pack to the win as if saying all that mess is nothing because Smoke is here…

But it is something. In a span of two weeks two drivers were the center of bomb drops in the garage, arcing in from totally different directions but both resulting in an exit in some way, shape or form. (more…)

Speed is universal. It is the variety of the vehicle that becomes a variable. It can be anything. The standard issue human body put to the test on the road of a marathon or a swimming pool or can be seen as a basis for muscle and blood endurance. Once you add a machine to the equation, the skills of handling the machine become another variable to consider.

In a very short period of time, we have been to one location to witness a range of machines and the people pushing their limits within. At Virginia International Raceway, variety is almost a constant. The terrain, the turns, the trees and the technology all come together in form and function. We have seen stock cars, prototypes, open-wheel and production based cars being raced here. Most recently, it was side by side racing with two less wheels.

Motorcycle racing is different. It is fast and fun to watch. The acceleration and the angles are multiplied by the human element which is plainly visible through every motion. The body is enclosed in a car. Surrounded by a roll cage and steel, the driver is mostly hidden from view. The motorcycle offers only a helmet and some bits of leather. (more…)