Monday, August 31, 2009

Mike Skeen at Road Atlanta - e36 M3

The Scuderia always enjoys an opportunity to watch Mike Skeen pilot a car around a track. It's a double payoff when it's an M3 and a nationally known and well liked track like Road Atlanta. I love the way he casually cuts through the field. Nice Work Mike.


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Track Addicts Rejoice - Porsche Announces 2010 GT3 Cup

Introducing the 2010 Porsche Gt-3 Cup, which will debut at the 2009 Frankfurt auto show. Wearing a wing likely designed by Airbus, but sharing most body panels and engine with the 2010 GT3RS the Porsche 911 Gt-3 Cup offers a factory built race-ready version of the current 997 chassis. So for the bargain basement price of $215,000 (probably less than you will be able to buy a GT-3RS from a dealer) you will be able to order this plutonium-grade track weapon directly from Porsche.

Any takers?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Scuderia On Track @ Putnam Park - The Aftermath

We were at Putnam Park last weekend with the Windy City BMWCCA. Aside from some clouds, the cool weather was quite a welcome break from the usual 90 degree August temperatures.

I have some video from the 2007 Putnam DE, which was my first time on the track with the Cayman and my second HPDE. I had been at Road America in April of that year with my wife's E90 BMW 330. I had fun at RA with the BMW, but I didnt get hooked until I got out there with the Cayman.

This is some video from the 2nd session on Sunday:

During this 2 year descent into track addiction, I have lowered the car with Bilstein PSS9s and put in some Racetech seats w/ 6 pt. harnesses. I have avoided doing any engine related mods. I am running Nitto NT-01 tires.

From my advanced video analysis, it looks like I am doing about 1:23-1:25 laps. According to Trackpedia, I am about as fast as a Spec Pinata or 944. I guess I have more work to do :) Maybe time for a Traqmate and Hoosiers?

Friday, August 21, 2009

Scuderia Back on Track - Putnam Park with Windy City BMWCCA

Heading down to lovely Greencastle, Indiana, home of DePauw University, an original German V1 rocket (at the Municipal Building), a bunch of covered bridges and Putnam Park racetrack. (Which is actually in neighboring Mt. Meridian, IN). Putnam Park was developed and is owned by Richard Diasio, and his sons, who are the builders of the Diasio 962 Race Car and Flo-Fast Fuel transfer pumps.

Unfortunately it looks like we have some really cool weather and possibly some rain in store for the weekend, but it should make for some exciting on track action.

Hopefully we get some video and pictures from the weekend. Peace.

Car Porn Deluxe - "Heir to the Throne" edition - Tom Milner Jr.and the RLR M3 GTR

Tom Milner Jr. talks through his experiences as a RLR M3 GTR pilot with some great in car footage. It's my understanding that the M3 GTR will also be included in the standard Need for Speed Shift game, which looks like another reason to stay home from work for a month. A little jumbled but I think that some of the shots make up for it. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Car Porn Deluxe- " Does It get any Better Edition" - New 911 GT3RS

I'm not sure how this car could get any better. Now I need to find a way to come up with $132,800. Details any story after the video. Enjoy

(VIA Motortrend and Porsche)

Based on the previous iteration, the new GT3 RS utilizes the same core flat-six engine as the previous version, but its been bored out from 3.6L to 3.8L - enough to provide an extra 15 horsepower over the standard 911 GT3, bringing output totals to a full 450 naturally-aspirated ponies. A revised, short-throw, close-ratio six-speed gearbox has been thrown in the package to produce a vehicle that revs faster and produces more dynamic acceleration traits - and higher top speed -- than the version that goes before.

2010 Porsche 911 GT3 RS rear three-quarter

But this being Porsche, the powertrain is only half the story. The newest GT3 RS has also been sharpened underneath, resulting in a wider track both front and aft, and corresponding wider bodywork. New wheels measure a full 9-in. wide up front and 12-in. wide at rear, wrapped in 245/35 ZR 19 rubber and 325/30 ZR 19 respectively. Porsche Active Drivetrain Mounts (PADM) are featured as standard, changing in stiffness and damping according to road surface and driving behavior - this resulting in reduced body roll and dive.

Even the details have been fine-tuned, with the new 911 GT3 RS featuring a larger carbon fiber rear wing and lower ride height than previous versions, along with an optional lithium-ion battery that saves weight over the conventionally lead-based version by over 22 lbs. The distinctive dual exhaust tips of the 911 GT3 RS remain a trademark feature of the new car, and as before the entire exhaust system is constructed of lightweight titanium.

2010 Porsche 911 GT3 RS front

The new Porsche 911 GT3 RS is slated to hit U.S. showrooms next year after a Frankfurt debut. Base price will be $132,800 exluding delivery charges.

2010 Porsche 911 GT3 RS rear

Saturday, August 15, 2009

the essence of Ranting - "BMW, The Ultimate SUV's"

Okay, to say that I'm more than a little bitter over BMW's recent decision to pull the plug on their Formula One effort, close-down Formula BMW America, and continue to build 6000 lbs sport utes with 500 + hp, that can only be driven con brio with the stability control on has taken me over the edge. What ever happened to the Ultimate Driving Machine. What ever happened to BMW poking fun at other companies for pulling this crap?

So as it stands today, here is my prediction, BMW will be out of ALMS by 2011 and likely out of motor racing by 2015.

There is a slight chance that they may end up in, (wait for it) NASCAR in 2012, but I think that they are concerned with Toyota's spend versus results. Maybe the X5 can run in the Craftsman Truck series.

Also Buick is walking away from its relationship with the PGA, and except for the dedicated club racers and HPDE participants, where do you see the majority of BMW today? At the track or parked at the clubhouse?

I hope I am reading this wrong, only time will tell. Agree?

New Segment - WTF? OMG! Cars - 760il Le-Mons Escapee

So I spotted this "*****" at my local BMW dealer last evening. Of special interest is the bespoke hood retaining strap system, as well as the custom bonnet art. Quite honestly I'm not certain if it is an ultra-luxury rat-rod or simply a scary luxo-cuiser that seen better days. Thoughts?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Car Porn Deluxe - "Flux Capacitor" edition - AWW Motorsports e46 M3 at the Ring

Not sure if I'm drawn to this video because of the great driving and car set-up performed by AWW Motorsport, or because of the disco light display on the dash. I'm guessing that it has something to do with monitoring the engine firing order, fuel/air mix, or it is just visualizing some cool German Techno music from a Berlin radio station. Enjoy!

Car Porn Deluxe - "Tell me the why" edition - Ferrari 458 Italia

If you a have a quarter of a million saved up for your next new car purchase, you could do a lot worse than to put down a deposit for one of these. Just the sound is worth $100,000. Enjoy!

(via FerrariWorld)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Schumacher withdraws from F1 Comeback - Badoer now Massa's replacement

MILAN — Ferrari says Italian Luca Badoer will replace Michael Schumacher at this month's European Grand Prix at Valencia after the seven-time world champion called off his much-anticipated Formula One comeback.

Badoer is a Ferrari test driver whose name was first floated by Italian media after Felipe Massa's crash took him off the race circuit.

Schumacher, 40, agreed to drive in Massa's place, but announced Tuesday he has canceled his return to F1 as a result of injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident earlier this year. He says he informed Ferrari officials Monday evening that he would not be able to step in for Massa.

Schumacher, who retired after the 2006 season, says his neck cannot stand up to the stresses of Formula One racing.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Car Porn Deluxe - "Meaner and Greener" edition- 2010 Porsche Turbo

The new car is more fuel efficient, more environmentally friendly and faster than the car it replaces. Viva le environment! Plus the fixed the paddle shifters on the PDK to be real paddle shifters. Enjoy!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Tyranny Wins Out over Good! Formula One Teams sign Concorde Agreement.

So in a "not surprising" move the 2010 class of Formula One Teams have ratified the Concorde Agreement, guaranteeing their allegiance to the Dark Side, I mean the FIA through 2012. As part of the agreement the teams have agreed to voluntary cost reductions that will bring spending to "early 1990's" levels. Sure tyranny is bad, except when your sleeping with the tyrant.

Statement from FOTA follows:

"Signed by all Formula One teams, with the only exception of BMW Sauber AG, the FIA, and Formula One Administration (FOA), Concorde 2009 lays down the commercial and regulatory guidelines for Formula One whilst guaranteeing the teams’ until the end of the 2012 season.

"FOTA will support any initiative which would allow BMW Sauber AG to reapply for full participation within the new Concorde Agreement.

"All Formula One teams have together reached a voluntary agreement on their own, which will put into practice FOTA’s long-standing objective gradually to reduce overall spending, eventually to around the levels of the early 1990s.

"The terms of Concorde 2009 will reinvigorate the role of the Formula One Commission, and various other Working Groups. The Formula One Commission will henceforth be a key decision-making body for change in Formula One.

"FOTA’s attention will now turn to other issues we believe to be in the long-term interest of F1: racing at the best tracks, in front of the biggest audiences and expanding F1’s reach."

In the interest of providing "fair and balanced" coverage I thought that you might enjoy this homage to the FIA/FOTA battle courtesy of Theratterdot com. Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

New Corvette C6R to battle GT-2 field at Mid-Ohio - ALMS

Welcome to the new American LeMans Series Corvette C6R making its racing debut in the more competitive GT-2 class at Mid-Ohio this coming weekend. The GT-2 C6R is now packing a 6-liter V8 (down from 8 liters in GT-1) and has a more tradtional aluminum chassis instead of the GT-1's tube-frame structure. As the pictures show the new car looks a lot more like the street going ZR-1 than the GT-1 monster ever did.

Thanks to Pratt and Miller for the pics.

Kimi has the right idea!

The last two weeks of Formula One have set the stage for the biggest resurgence or failure the sport has known. With the withdrawal of BMW, Nelson Piquet Jr's damning departure from Renault, Massa's injury and Schumacher's return to the cockpit, most fans are on the edge of their seats waiting for the next chapter in the 2009 Formula 1 Saga.

But has anyone noticed that Lewis Hamilton actually won the race in Hungary? Or that Alonso was on the pole? If you read the many blog posts and professional motorsport journalists you will find that of all of the numerous electrons spent over the last two weeks, very few have been devoted to the actual act of racing cars.

That's where it seems that Kim has had the right idea in quiet switch to the world of rallying, where the racing is real, the tracks are untamed, and danger lurks behind every bush tree or jump. I invite you to check out this excellent video that sums-up the essence of rallying and after watching it ask yourself the last time you saw anything that matches it in F1. Enjoy!