Sidepodcast // All for F1 and F1 for all

Written by Pat W

Page 1

Le Mans 24 Hours

24 Heures du Mans 2014

Sidepodcast: Le Mans 24 Hours

by Pat W

This is it, the big race! A whole year of waiting is now over. The return of Porsche, and yes Webber too. Toyota starts as favourites and Audi are playing it safe but this is Le Mans and anything can happen. GTE Pro is worth a look, pro drivers in Astons vs Ferraris vs Porsches vs Corvettes always is. Throw in a huge LMP2 and GTE Am field of pro-am cars meaning traffic-management will be crucial. And don't forget to follow the Nissan ZEOD, which is like the Delta Wing but is a hybrid. Get ready your cheese baguettes, pain au chocolat and a glass or three of wine, for tonight we journey to the centre of France.

Le Mans 24 Hours - Practice and qualifying

24 Heures du Mans 2014

Sidepodcast: Le Mans 24 Hours - Practice and qualifying

by Pat W

Two days of activity precede this year's edition of the endurance classic. Wednesday sees four hours of free practice from 15:00 UK time, followed by two hours of qualifying from 21:00 UK - expect the fight for pole in this Wednesday night session unless it rains. On Thursday we see another couple of 2 hour qualifying sessions, at 18:00 and 21:00 UK time, but in recent years teams have switched to race set-up by now. Thursday is worth watching because you never know what'll happen and there is lots to learn, but that shootout for pole will surely be on Wednesday.

Le Mans recharged

Developments in the top flight of sportscar racing

Sidepodcast: Le Mans recharged

by Pat W

The fuss made in Formula 1 about the new-for-2014 power units is well-documented. Flying somewhat under the radar are the developments in sportscar racing, the LMP1 class at Le Mans and in the FIA World Endurance Championship. In the week of the great race itself, just what is going on?

62nd Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring

TUDOR United Sportscar Championship

Sidepodcast: 62nd Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring

by Pat W

For the first time in 17 years a major championship features both of America's classic endurance races, the Daytona 24 Hour and the Sebring 12 Hour. That series is IMSA's United Sportscar, the result of the merger of ALMS and GrandAm. Back in January on GrandAm's turf the Daytona Prototypes ruled the roost, now we're in the back yard of the ALMS will the LMP2 cars reassert themselves? Will the GT classes again be ridiculously close? The top line LMP1 cars may have gone but with 64 cars in the field there are storylines aplenty.

Rolex 24 at Daytona

TUDOR United Sportscar Championship

Sidepodcast: Rolex 24 at Daytona

by Pat W

This year's Daytona 24 Hours is far more special than usual. It signals the beginning of a new era. The American Le Mans Series and the Grand-Am Rolex Series are no more, NASCAR purchased the former and merged it into the latter to create the TUDOR United Sportscar Championship. Featuring cars, teams and drivers from each series plus a star-studded list of guest drivers all through the field from F1, IndyCar, WEC, NASCAR and beyond, the 2014 Rolex 24 is sure to be a classic.

Petit Le Mans

Americans Le Mans Series 2013

Sidepodcast: Petit Le Mans

by Pat W

Georgia's 1000-mile autumn classic concludes the ALMS season for the final time. In 2014 US sportscar racing enters the brave new world of #thefuture with the Tudor United Sportscar Championship (TUSC). Today though will surely be a bittersweet event as we wave goodbye and celebrate 15 years of the ALMS and, hopefully, send it out in style.

Le Mans 24 Hours

24 Heures du Mans 2013

Sidepodcast: Le Mans 24 Hours

by Pat W

Le Mans 2013 is full of famous names from across motorsport, with drivers not just from sportscar backgrounds but also from F1, GP2, IndyCar, touring cars, even V8 Supercars. Senna, Chandhok, Di Grassi, Kobayashi, Briscoe, Conway, Bright. These are liberally spread across four classes, four races happening on the track at the same time. Audi walkover? Maybe, maybe not, but there's plenty else to watch for at Le Mans.

Indianapolis 500 - Qualifying

IZOD IndyCar Series 2013

Sidepodcast: Indianapolis 500 - Qualifying

by Pat W

Welcome to the Month of May at Indianapolis! Saturday is Pole Day, some 5 hours of qualifying and practice. 24 drivers locked into the field, then the top 9 fastest shoot out again for the Pole. Sunday is Bump Day, your last chance, for positions 25-33. There are 34 entries this year. Realistically Sunday is a practice day until the last hour. Saturday is the focus then, and with a year's experience, the boost levels raised and the wings trimmed out, we could see the fastest speeds in a decade. Questions? Just ask!

Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hours

The Ultimate Aussie Endurance Race 2013

Sidepodcast: Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hours

by Pat W

The incredible Mount Panorama circuit host more than one endurance race per year. The 1000km V8 Supercar race may be more famous but this younger event for GT3 and Touring cars is growing in stature. This year's race has the biggest entry yet: 47 cars with some 'name' drivers like Mika Salo and Bernd Schneider, and coverage for the first time from Radio Le Mans including web video (which acts like a DVR so you can pick up where you left off). The atmosphere at The Mountain is very relaxed, there's no championship on the line and no points, so just dip in and out whenever you feel like it!

Rolex 24 at Daytona 2013

Endurance racing at the Daytona International Speedway

Sidepodcast: Rolex 24 at Daytona 2013

by Pat W

The Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona is the annual start to the racing year. Other races and rallies may start earlier but nowhere other than Daytona features as many top drivers from different series coming together to start their season. If Le Mans is mostly about cars, Daytona is almost all about drivers. This year's 51st running is the last of an era as we close the book on the Grand-Am years, next year there will be a merger with the ALMS meaning Daytona and Sebring will become part of the same series. Daytona is fast and tough on cars yet somehow it always breeds a close race.

Petit Le Mans

Americans Le Mans Series 2012

Sidepodcast: Petit Le Mans

by Pat W

Petit Le Mans only began in 1998 and is already established as one of the world's great races. The picturesque yet narrow Road Atlanta track provides the perfect setting whilst remaining a challenge for all. No longer a round of the ILMC/WEC, so there's no Audi or Toyota, it isn't a US-only affair. The WEC team Rebellion Racing are taking the opportunity to bring an LMP1 car to race for the overall win against the ALMS regulars. As well as a full ALMS grid we'll also see some ELMS teams from Europe competing in LMP2. In drivers, Dario and Marino Franchitti team up, Martin Brundle's son Alex is here, so is Brendon Hartley. And what's more - the Delta Wing will be making its 2nd race appearance. The race lasts for 1000 miles or 10 hours, 42 cars on a short twisty track, this race practically guarantees drama every season. With no Audi/Toyota whitewash and an unreliable LMP1 field the race is completely open. You'd be mad to miss it.

Milwaukee IndyFest

IZOD IndyCar Series 2012

Sidepodcast: Milwaukee IndyFest

by Pat W

The Milwaukee Mile is the oldest circuit in the world which is still active, having first opened in 1903. One mile of a concrete oval with very low banking by modern standards, which means it races a bit like a road course. The short track also means traffic is always a problem! You have to both be a good driver and have some luck to win at the Mile. Rubens starts up front, could this be his best shot at an oval win?

24 Heures du Mans

World Endurance Championship 2012

Sidepodcast: 24 Heures du Mans

by Pat W

Welcome to one of the race events of the year, the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Up front we all expect Audi to win but in qualifying Toyota were also quick - will either hybrid design be reliable enough to last the distance? The same question can be asked of the unique Delta Wing experiment which has suffered electrical gremlins so far this week, fingers crossed those problems are solved. Away from the technologically interesting cars we do actually have some close races! Watch the 'independents' fighting tooth and nail to finish as best behind the manufacturers - they might even take a few big name scalps. Behind them, the LMP2, GT Pro and GT Am classes are wide open and you can't pick a winner in any of them. 24 hours. 56 cars. 168 drivers. Boring? Not on your life.

24 Hours of Le Mans - The ultimate 2012 preview

Motorsport's most prestigious endurance race is back

Sidepodcast: 24 Hours of Le Mans - The ultimate 2012 preview

by Pat W

So you think this year's edition of the 24 Hours is going to be boring? Audi will win? Well yes they will but never mind that - racing is about stories and there are 52 other stories to be played out at Le Mans this year. This is the perfect opportunity to dive into the other four races happening on the track - particularly the battle for 'best behind Audi/Toyota' which has plenty of F1 interest to follow. Keep an eye on the Delta Wing, too!

24 Heures du Mans (Qualifying 2 and Qualifying 3)

World Endurance Championship 2012

Sidepodcast: 24 Heures du Mans (Qualifying 2 and Qualifying 3)

by Pat W

After the opening salvos yesterday there is another chance today to improve your times. Those who feel secure will surely switch to looking at race performance so this could be our first real sense of who will be quick at the weekend. Those looking risky or who think they can make improvements will still be out there going for qualifying times or simply giving their drivers laps. Do still listen along to Radio Le Mans for all of the latest news and gossip and to learn all about this weekend's race. During qualifying each car has three drivers, each of those drivers must run some laps in darkness to qualify. Each car must be within 110% of class pole. Times carry over between sessions so you can set your fastest in any of the three periods.

24 Heures du Mans (Practice and Qualifying 1)

World Endurance Championship 2012

Sidepodcast: 24 Heures du Mans (Practice and Qualifying 1)

by Pat W

Welcome back to La Sarthe! Nothing beats the magic of Le Mans. Despite the competition up front being more limited than we are used to there is plenty to keep us interested in the rest of this 56 car field. Audi and Toyota have new hybrids, there's the battle for top privateer/petrol entry (including ex-F1 drivers), the intrigue of the Delta Wing, and a small yet very strong contingent in GTE Pro. For qualifying each car has three drivers, each of those drivers must run some laps in darkness to qualify. Each car must be within 110% of class pole. Times carry over between sessions so you can set your fastest in any of the three periods. Many teams may elect to do their real qualifying runs now as some prefer to use the Thursday to switch the car to a race setup. This of course depends on the weather!

Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix

IZOD IndyCar Series 2012

Sidepodcast: Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix

by Pat W

A concrete-lined track on an island in the middle of a river, it is easy to draw parallels between Belle Isle and Montreal's Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Unlike Montreal it lacks long straights, and when CART and Champ Car raced here from 1992-2001 it gained a reputation as being a tricky, physical circuit at which it was difficult to overtake, a reputation reinforced when the IndyCar Series arrived for two races on a slightly truncated course in 2007 and 2008 which cut out a key passing zone. Racing has been absent since, until the shorter version of the track was revived for this weekend. If past Belle Isle races are anything to go by you can expect elbows out, a lot of contact and a reliance on pit strategy. The silver lining? The new DW12 cars generated excitement at other tracks previously thought to be boring, so why not this one? This race set up by Roger Penske is also notable for the return of Chevrolet as a title sponsor of an IndyCar race. F1 connection: F1 raced on a street course in Detroit in the 1980s, which switched to CART in 1989 after F1 went to Phoenix. The CART race was moved to Belle Isle in 1992.

Indianapolis 500 Qualifying - Bump Day

IZOD IndyCar Series 2012

Sidepodcast: Indianapolis 500 Qualifying - Bump Day

by Pat W

Qualifying for the Indianapolis 500 can be one of the most dramatic times in motorsport. Failed to qualify in the top 24 on pole day? Try again today! To be bumped means to be knocked out of the Field of 33. Times are not deleted if you are bumped, but someone ahead of you may delete their time to run again - and get it wrong. The height of this session is in the last hour when the clock is winding down and teams are still trying to make the race, especially if big names are involved, the pressure is on, will they or won't they?!