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Volkswagen Beetle to make debut at Los Angeles rounds of Global Rallycross series

September 18th, 2014

9.18.14 – Herndon, VA — The Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross team will be racing at the Port of Los Angeles this weekend in an action-packed double header—and will debut the exciting Global Rallycross Beetle that will spearhead the team’s efforts in their 2015 Championship chase. The two-race event will be a new challenge for the team, the only double header weekend in the 2014 season.

 
Scott Speed, driver of the No. 77 7UP Volkswagen, is looking to take advantage of twice the number of championship points being on offer. After six rounds, he is third in points behind Nelson Piquet Jr. and Ken Block.
 
"The No. 77 7UP Volkswagen has had a lot of bad luck lately and we are due some good fortune—hopefully it turns up this weekend on the West Coast,” said Speed. “We will have to work extremely hard in L.A. and make sure we get off on the right foot on Friday”
 
Tanner Foust is in a close battle with Sverre Isachsen and Bucky Lasek for seventh position in the driver championship. The driver of the No. 34 Rockstar Energy Drink Volkswagen is pushing for podium finishes in the last four races of the season and is delighted to be given responsibility for debuting the team’s new car.
 
"It's been a roller coaster season so far, but I am still very happy with the results, especially the win in New York, considering this is a new team and a new car,” said Foust. “Continuing the learning process, I will be piloting an even newer car with Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross in Los Angeles. I am very excited to compete with the new Rockstar Energy Drink Volkswagen Beetle at the Port of LA.”
Red Bull Global Rallycross Los Angeles will take place at the Port of Los Angeles in San Pedro, CA, from September 19-21. NBC will air both races live on Saturday, September 20, and Sunday, September 21, at 5:00 p.m. ET. Follow @VW and @FollowAndretti on Twitter for updates throughout the weekend.
 
For tickets and further event information, visit: http://www.redbullglobalrallycross.com/
 
 
 

Don’t Miss Out: Appearances for RBGRC: Port of LA

September 17th, 2014

9.17.14 – Come out to the Red Bull Global Rallycross: Port of LA event in Los Angeles this weekend! Below you can find information on where and when you can meet Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross drivers Tanner Foust and Scott Speed during their stay in SoCal.

 
 
 
 
 
 
Thursday, September 18
 

Scott Speed & Tanner Foust
Autograph Session
Pacific Volkswagen – 14900 Hindry Ave, Hawthorne, CA 90250
6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
 
Saturday, September 20
 
Scott Speed & Tanner Foust
Autograph Session
RBGRC: Port of LA – 425 S. Palos Verdes St, San Pedro, CA 90731
9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
 

 

Brabham calls debut of Formula E series a ‘great success’

September 16th, 2014

9.16.14 (via Motorsport.com) – Matthew Brabham, reserve driver for the Andretti Autosport Formula-E team for the first round of the FIA’s all electric Series held in China, is enthused about the forward progress of the Championship.

Following a successful test session in the electric-powered Dallara chassis last month in England, the 20-year-old was drafted into the squad to assist drivers, Franck Montagny (in photo above) and Charles Pic at the circuit which circulated the Beijing Olympic precinct.

It was a tremendous success for the Andretti Formula E team and its two French drivers. Montagny finished second and Pic came home fourth in the dramatic event, that saw the two leaders – Nico Prost and Nick Heidfeld collide on the final corner, Heidfeld rolling into the barriers.

Brabham’s key area was to work with the team and drivers on the strategy to maximise the battery power on the electric cars.

He walked away from China believing that Formula E has a fantastic future and with a majority of the field featuring international drivers with modern Formula 1, IndyCar and sportscar experience it bodes well.

“The whole setup is extremely professional, it is very much to the spec of Formula 1 in terms of the paddock layout, the pit area and how the event runs,” said Brabham upon returning to his US base.

“I was a little concerned about the racing product being diminished by the power saving and the different strategies that teams would employ, however the race was entertaining, there was a lot of passing and you couldn’t ask for anything more – coming down to a last lap, last corner pass for the win.”

The Prost/Heidfeld crash was the major talking point after the race.

“It was a huge crash, massive. I think that once everyone realised that Nick was OK from the crash they were quite relieved and were impressed at the strength of the vehicles to withstand something that big.

"In any form of racing, you can't ask for much more than to have the lead come down to the last corner on the final lap and with it being so dramatic, it should generate huge pickup around the world."

Brabham believes the Andretti Formula-E team was one of the best prepared heading to China and were able to take advantage of that preparation.

“The engineers and team members at Andretti Autosport were really on it right from the very beginning when I first went to the test in England,” he explained. “A lot of the other teams were working to get their heads around the systems and the cars, but the Andretti guys knew what to do from the start.

 

Read more here… 

 

 

Andretti Autosport happy to be on top

September 14th, 2014

9.14.14 (via ElectricAutosport.com) – Andretti Autosport Formula-E Team leaves Beijing in high spirits and top of the inaugural FIA Formula E Championship following a successful first ePrix in China, with a second-place podium finish for Franck Montagny and a fourth place from fellow countryman Charles Pic.

The one-day event, comprising of two practice sessions, split qualifying and a 25 lap race around the city street circuit made for an exhilarating spectacle in the world’s first all-electric racing series.

Michael Andretti, Team Owner at the American-based squad praised the series on its exciting debut: “Congratulations to Alejandro [Agag] on an event that was an overwhelming success. I’m very proud to be able to be a part of this exciting new series and to help shape the future of motorsport. Franck [Montagny] and Charles [Pic] did a great job and I’m happy to come away from the event leading the team championship.”

Things did not all go quite to plan however. After initially qualifying fifth, Montagny was handed a three place grid penalty for repeatedly crossing the white line on pit exit, demoting him to start the race from eighth place on the grid. This only spurred the 36 year old on to produce a fine start that saw both Andretti’s alongside one another as they narrowly avoided contact, before Montagny executed a brave move around Pic to claim position. From here he never looked back setting the early pace with another overtake, this time on Karun Chandhok for fifth.

A quick car change allowed him to jump Daniel Abt In the pits, before being gifted a place on the podium when Nico Prost and Nick Heidfeld came to blows on the last lap. Montagny was left delighted with the team’s showing and 18 points in the drivers’ championship:

“I would like to say thank you to the organisers of the Formula E series, because it really was a fantastic day. I have driven many different cars in many different series and I have to say that this is one of my best times in a car! The team has done a fantastic job, at testing and here in Beijing. Andretti Formula-E is an American team, based in Donington, UK, so it is not easy to start a team in a different country and everyone did very well. My teammate and I work well together and I had really, really good fun.”

 

Read more here…

 

 

 

Exclusive guide to Formula E: Andretti Autosport’s Kyle Moyer analyzes series ahead of inaugural race

September 12th, 2014

9.12.14 (via Autoweek.com) – Formula E’s much-anticipated season begins Saturday in Beijing — you can watch it live on Saturday, Sept. 13 at 3:30 a.m. ET exclusively on Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports Go, with a replay airing Sunday, Sept. 14  at 1 p.m. ET — and there is much to discuss and dissect. There will be 10 teams with two cars each on the grid, with Andretti Autosport considered the early favorite given its experience with street racing, especially in the Verizon IndyCar Series.
 
Andretti Autosport general manager Kyle Moyer sat down with us this week to discuss some of the new, all-electric race-car series’ key points.
 
Autoweek: There are so many unknowns about Formula E, but it appears it will hit the ground running this week in China. What’s your take on it?
 
Kyle Moyer: I give it to Formula E because every target has been made. They said the first car would be delivered here, the second car here, the first test here, the first race simulations here, when we’ll load up here, everything. From all the series we’ve been in, including A1GP, this is professional. The sky’s the limit.
 
AW: Give us a sense of the budget that’s required.
 
KM: You’re not restricted, but there’s X amount you can spend because the car’s spec and you can’t [modify] much. You’re limited to 13 guys working on the car, but I’ve been against that because you have to pay them a lot of money because they have to be really good; they have to do multiple jobs to cover a lot of bases.
 
The car budget is basically maintenance, running [the car] and travel. Where does the budget go next year? Motors will be open [for development]. In the third year, batteries are open for development. If you get manufacturers in here — Honda, Nissan, Volkswagen — that’s where the money will be, and that’s where the money should be.
 
AW: So what are we talking for a car?
 
KW: About $350,000 fully kitted. An IndyCar is about $550,000.
 
AW: Even though Formula One cars feature lots of hybrid technology and energy-recovery systems, Formula E actually looks like it will more resemble IndyCar than Formula One. Is that a fair assessment?
 
KM: They’ve taken a page out of IndyCar and not Formula One. In a lot of the meetings, it’s “IndyCar has done this, IndyCar has done that, let’s do that.” There’s not a lot of talk about how it’s done in Formula One, and that’s a good thing. Have a spec car, but open up the things that actually get paid for. There are cost constraints. This is not going to be F1; they don’t want it to be F1. They just want it to have the appearance of F1. They want the teams and the series to look professional, and I think it will.
 
 
 
 
 

MRTI in action this weekend for Chris Griffis Memorial test

September 10th, 2014

9.10.14 – The fourth annual Chris Griffis Memorial Mazda Road to Indy test will take place on the revamped 14-turn, 2.434-mile road course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:35 p.m. both days with USF2000, Pro Mazda and Indy Lights on track. Andretti Autosport will see Team USA Scholarship winner Neil Alberico in its No. 27 Pro Mazda car for an evaluation.

The 21-year-old from Northern California has contended in the Mazda Road to Indy for the past two years claiming a Winterfest title, second place in the USF2000 Championship, as well as a third-place finish in points for his rookie year in Pro Mazda. 

“I’ve spent most of my career trying to beat the Andretti Autosport guys, so it is great to get the chance to work with them this weekend,” said Alberico, who scored two podium finishes at the Indianapolis track earlier this year. “They have a great reputation and it is clear that everyone on the team has the same desire to succeed that I do, so I’m looking forward to having a productive couple of days at The Speedway.” 

Fans will be able to watch Alberico, who captured two podium finishes during the inaugural Grand Prix of Indy weekend, and the rest of the next generation of IndyCar stars from the Turn 2 Viewing Mounds and the South Terrace grandstands and can follow along with our team on Twitter via @FollowAndretti.

Speedway Style: Marco Andretti on racing, fashion and why DWTS is not in his future

September 8th, 2014

9.8.14 (via Fashion Trends Daily) – You never forget your first time.

Deep growls reverberated throughout my body. My pulse quickened and I could nearly taste the adrenaline rush. The deafening groans were almost too much to take as the sleek bodies hugged the curves — and then it passed and for a moment and I could breathe again. My first Indy Car race. I would never be the same.

It was my first time at the Long Beach Grand Prix, where in addition to feeling the visceral excitement of racing for the first time (TV does not count), I spotted Marco Andretti posing graciously and confidently with two of his many adoring fans. It was evident why racing and style are such seductive bedfellows and why Andretti, who hails from one of racing’s most illustrious families, is considered one of the sport’s top ambassadors. Straight out of the gate in 2006, Andretti finished second in his first Indianapolis 500 in the second-closest finish in 500 history and was named Rookie of the Year. Later that year, Andretti won at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. at just 19 years old. He has since finished top five in the Indy 500 five out of the last nine years.

While IndyCar racing has always been considered the kind of sexy sport that attracts high-end sponsors who capitalize on the industry’s equally sexy cars, camera-ready drivers (both men and women now) and high-octane action, what is newer to IndyCar racing has been luxury fashion and accessories companies stepping into the mix — both with sponsorship of the cars and collaborations and partnerships with the drivers. This past year we saw Detroit-based heritage and watch brand Shinola as a major sponsor of the Detroit race and  Izod, William Rast have also been past sponsors and luxury watch brands such as LAPIZTA and B.R.M. (Bernard Richards Manufacture) have collaborated with IndyCar drivers for exclusive lines. (Read more here).

Promoting the upcoming series finale at Auto Club Speedway outside Los Angeles, Andretti took the time to chat with Fashion Trends Daily from his home in Pennsylvania and give us a look into what it’s like to be one of racing’s hottest names and style arbiters — and why he thinks he’s just too boring for reality TV. (For the record: We beg to differ! How boring can you be if you vacation with Ludacris and can say that Ice-T and Coco’s dog King Maximus fathered your bulldog?!)

Read on for our fun chat with Andretti!

Fashion Trends Daily: I went to the Long Beach Grand Prix this year, and I saw firsthand how gracious you were with fans before the race, posing for pictures, giving autographs. Have you seen a change in the type of IndyCar fan coming to the track during your career? 

Marco Andretti: You know what’s funny? I’m not sure I see a difference in the fans, but I see in difference in myself. I’m often misperceived because I have a million things going on in my head at the racetrack. So I’ve been really working on myself and working on being more graceful with fans.

 

Read more here…

 

 

 

Hinchcliffe weighs in on new Indy Lights car

September 8th, 2014

9.8.14 (via IndyCar.com) – Current performance is solid while it’s the new-for-2015 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires car’s potential that excited Verizon IndyCar Series drivers Scott Dixon and James Hinchcliffe.
 
One month after its initial on-track testing at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, the drivers provided feedback following separate sessions Sept. 5 on the 2.439-mile, 14-turn Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. Reigning Indy Lights champion Gabby Chaves will add his perspective during testing Sept. 6 on the iconic 2.5-mile oval.
 
Scott Dixon“As far as performance, it feels very good though it’s hard to compare it to the other Indy Lights car,” said Dixon, the three-time Verizon IndyCar Series champion for Target Chip Ganassi Racing. “It’s fun going through some setups and driving something different. It’s early in its development with setups, but there are a lot of similarities to the IndyCar in terms of technology and safety. A nice thing is I can take my seat and put it in there, which is well thought out.
 
“The platform of Indy Lights is very important to see good drivers come through on their way up, hopefully, to the IndyCar Series so I’m happy to assist in any way.”
 
The turbocharged 4-cylinder Advanced Engine Research engine is mated to a Dallara chassis designed to be fast and safe on the variety pack of racetracks utilized in conjunction with Verizon IndyCar Series race weekends.
 
“It’s all about getting miles on the car and trying to contribute to the testing program,” said Hinchcliffe, of Andretti Autosport. “You feel out the brakes and the turbocharged engine, which has some different characteristics from the V8 engine that the other car had, and then you get to the chassis side and work on setups to handle each circuit. You have to build up slowly those first couple of runs.
 
“Every bit of data at this point is valuable. I’m a huge proponent of the Indy Lights series; it was a huge step for me in developing my skills and helping me get up to IndyCar. Anything I can do to help the series grow I’m here. To be part of the development of anything new is a nice new challenge and something fun.”
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Andretti Autosport’s Steve Barry named IndyCar Truck Driver of the Year

September 4th, 2014

9.4.2014 - Steve Barry is one of the many members of the Andretti Autosport family and also one of the co-pilots of the No. 27 United Fiber & Data transporter that houses the two Honda-powered Indy cars of James Hinchcliffe. As a Transportation Manager, or truckie as they are fondly known, Barry drives the bright blue and white transporter from race to race, back to Andretti HQ and back out again. He, alongside the rest of Andretti Autosport's truckies, set up the "garage" at each race event or test, manage the pit box, load and unload all of our equipment and help with the ever-important pit stops during races. For 2014 he was named IndyCar Truck Driver of the Year by his fellow truckies throughout the paddock.

"I'm pleasantly surprised and humbled about this award," the Milwaukee native said. "Sometimes you're out here just working and doing your job and don't realize that other people watch. It's kind of humbling to know that all the work you put in gets noticed by other people. I think this whole award is chosen by the other people you work with out here and all the other guys that drive the trucks and set up the pits. There are eyes on you all the time – we're kind of a separate entity from the crew itself, and our responsibilty every weekend is to make everything gel. From that perspective, it's just nice that the other guys know you're doing a good job and vote for you."

The 15-year veteran of motorsport notes he is thankful to have his wife Sarah for holding down the fort all by herself while he travels with his Andretti Autosport family for so many days out of the year. Barry has been with Andretti Autosport since 2011 where he first started in the team's hospitality department; he has co-piloted one of the team's trucks for three years and now resides in Indianapolis with Sarah and their pets.

 

Congrats Steve! We're happy to have you be a part of the Andretti family!

Carlos Munoz Sunoco Rookie of the Year in a deep IndyCar freshman class

September 2nd, 2014

9.2.14 (via MotorSportsTalk) – The early season favorite for Verizon IndyCar Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year was Andretti Autosport’s Carlos Munoz, and Munoz confirmed the award with an eighth place finish in Saturday night’s MAVTV 500 season finale at Auto Club Speedway.

Munoz scored three podium finishes (all third-places), two additional top-fives and three further top-10 finishes to end eighth in the IndyCar points standings.

Andretti’s Ryan Hunter-Reay finished sixth, Marco Andretti was ninth and James Hinchcliffe 12th this season.

As for the other rookies, Munoz was part of one of IndyCar’s better rookie classes in recent memory (2011 comes to mind), in a year that also featured the emergence – and podiums – from Mikhail Aleshin, Jack Hawksworth and race winner Carlos Huertas, all at Houston.

“First of all I want to wish (Mikhail) Aleshin a speedy recovery,” Munoz said. “As a rookie this year, I think it was the strongest rookie field IndyCar ever had. In general, we had the podiums and everything and that was great, and that’s why I feel really nice to be Rookie of the Year.

“As I said before, the competition this year was really tough. I’m just really happy; this is just the beginning, hopefully, of my career in IndyCar for many years. It’s always nice to have this honor in your resume. I think we finished the season strong, so I’m happy.”

 
Munoz also praised the work done by his No. 34 Cinsay/AndrettiTV.com Honda crew throughout the Fontana weekend, for getting him turned around after a difficult test and qualifying session (he qualified 18th).
 
 
 
 
 


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