Weekend Preview (28/29 April 2018)

Some of things happening this weekend that I’ll be watching.

Times are approximate and in British Summer Time.

Formula E:  Paris ePrix
(Saturday, 2:30pm 5Spike)

Circuit des Invalides, Esplanade des Invalides, Paris, France.
Race starts at 4pm local, 3pm UK.
1.93km (1.2 miles)
Race lap record:  1:02.323
Qualifying record:  1:01.616

Round 8 of a scheduled 12 this year, this is series’ 3rd visit to Paris. The previous winners were Lucas di Grassi and Sebastien Buemi.

Jean-Eric Vergne holds an 18 point lead over Sam Bird. Felix Rosenqvist dominated the Rome race until he hit the kerb. All three drivers have 2 wins this season. JEV has finished every race 5th or better, every other driver in the field has at least one non-points finish or DNF.

If Jaguar can get their energy management sorted they are very close to scoring a podium result, maybe even a win. Andre Lotterer seems to be improving at every round. And last season’s champ Lucas di Grassi finally has points on the board, look for him to score well again and move up the standings.

Due to live rugby coverage on Channel 5, this race will air live on 5Spike at 2:30pm and delayed on Channel 5 at 11:40am Sunday.
Due to live snooker and cycling on British Eurosport, this race will air delayed at 4:35pm Saturday on BE1.

Points after 7 races:
119  Jean-Eric Vergne (Techeetah);
101  Sam Bird (DS Virgin);
82  Felix Rosenqvist (Mahindra);
60  Sebastien Buemi (Renault DAMS);
50  Daniel Abt (Audi Sport Abt);

152  Techeetah;
118  DS Virgin Racing;
103  Mahindra Racing;
89  Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler;
88  Panasonic Jaguar Racing;

Formula 1:  Azerbaijan GP
(8pm Sunday, BT Sport ESPN)

Baku City Circuit, Baku, Azerbaijan
Race starts at 1:10pm UK.
6.0km (3.7 miles)
Race lap record:  1:43.441
Qualifying record:  1:40.592

The 3rd F1 GP at Baku, though only the second under this name, moves earlier in the year from June to April. The previous winners were Nico Rosberg and Daniel Ricciardo. One race was turgidly dull, one race was fantastic! Let’s hope we get another good one.

This is the track with the ridiculously long and undulating front straight into a 90 degree left-hander, it was almost purpose-designed for Daniel Ricciardo and he made great use of it last year despite being a little down on power versus other teams.

It was of course the setting for Vettel banging wheels with Hamilton before a restart, I’m still astonished he didn’t get more of a penalty for that one.

Points after 3 races:
54  Sebastien Vettel (Ferrari);
45  Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes);
40  Valterri Bottas (Mercedes);
37  Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull);
30  Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari);

85  Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport;
84  Scuderia Ferrari;
55  Aston Martin Red Bull Racing;
28  McLaren F1 Team;
25  Renault Sport F1 Team;


Other things happening this weekend.

Formula 2 at Baku;
WTCR at the Hungaroring;
BTCC at Donington Park;
British GT at Rockingham;
Pirelli World Challenge at VIR;
ADAC GT at Most;
NASCAR Talledega;
WRC Argentina;
WRX Portugal;

I plan to catch up with WTCR, BTCC and British GT at a later date. Maybe even Formula 2 but I’m about 5 years behind on that.


Weekend Preview (21/22 April 2018)

Some of things happening this weekend that I’ll be watching.

Times are approximate and in British Summer Time. And yes, the MotoGP and IndyCar races are both in the US and they overlap. I’ve noted the start of TV coverage since I’m not sure of exact start times this week, but I don’t think we’ll see MotoGP completely done before IndyCar starts.

MotoGP:  GP of the Americas
(8pm Sunday, BT Sport 2)

Moto3 4:15pm, Moto2 6pm (TV coverage times)

Circuit of the Americas hosts round 3 of MotoGP.

Will we see some sense of the usual order? Or are Crutchlow and Zarco going to be competitive all season? If the former is true then Doviziosio has a healthy points advantage. If the latter, we have one hell of a season in progress!

That said, COTA is Marc Marquez country:  There have been 5 MotoGP races at this circuit and he has won all of them. (Lewis Hamilton has won 5 of the 6 F1 GPs.)

Dani Pedrosa is apparently intending to race, despite breaking his wrist two weeks earlier in Argentina. Made of stern stuff, these motorcycle racers.

Points after 2 races

38  Cal Crutchlow;
35  Andrea Dovizioso;
28  Johann Zarco;
21  Maverick Vinales;
20  Marc Marquez;

45  Honda;
38  Ducati;
36  Yamaha;
23  Suzuki;
7  KTM;
4  Aprilia;

41  LCR Honda;
37  Monster Yamaha Tech 3;
37  Movistar Yamaha MotoGP;
36  Ducati Team;
36  Alma Pramac Racing;

IndyCar:  GP of Alabama
(8pm Sunday, BT Sport ESPN)

The first time we see the new 2018 IndyCar aero package at a natural terrain road course. I can’t wait to see them, the looser cars with lower downforce could either open up passing opportunities or it could make a one-groove racetrack like it was when the ex-IRL cars started racing here in 2010.

Watch onboard cameras at this track, it feels like video from a rollercoaster! That’s one reason alone to watch this race even if it turns out to be boring competitively, the drivers really are working so hard at this place and you can really see it here, unlike somewhere like the Indy road course.

Three different styles of track in three consecutive weeks:  Phoenix short oval, Long Beach street course, and Barber road course. Hell of a mix.

Expect a lot of talk about Indianapolis, this being the final race before the “Month of May”.

Most Barber wins (current drivers):
2  Will Power, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Josef Newgarden;
Most wins (teams):
5  Team Penske;

Points after 3 races:
126  Alexander Rossi (Andretti Autosport / Honda);
104  Josef Newgarden (Team Penske / Chevrolet);
93  Graham Rahal (Rahal Letterman / Honda);
88  Sebastian Bourdais (Dale Coyne / Honda);
83  James Hinchcliffe (Schmidt Peterson / Honda);


Other things happening this weekend, that I probably won’t see.

NASCAR Cup and Xfinity both at Richmond;
Indy Lights at Barber;
IMSA PC at Barber;
Blancpain GT Endurance at Monza;
24H Series with the 12H Navarra;
Supercars at Phillip Island;
World Superbikes at Assen;
Super Formula at Suzuka;
NHRA at Baytown;

Start Times: 22-23 May

Here are some selected start times for races happening this weekend, as well as qualifying at Indy. I hope I’ve got the timezone adjustments right. This week I’ve added Saturday events, though note the two NASCAR races which start on Saturday in the US are actually happening in the early hours of Sunday for us in the UK.

I have purposely left out some junior series and less popular GT events.

Saturday 22 May 2010
UK Time Duration Series Venue Event

10.15am Formula 2 Monza Race 1
4.15pm 1 hour FIA GT1 World Brno Qual race
5pm 7 hours IndyCar Indianapolis Motor Speedway Pole Day
10pm 6 hours ALMS Laguna Seca Race
Sunday 23 May 2010
UK Time Duration Series Venue Event

12.30am Sprint Cup Charlotte Showdown
2am Sprint Cup Charlotte All Star Race
10am 45 minutes Superleague Magny-Cours Race 1
12.05pm 9 laps WTCC Monza Race 1
1pm 28 laps MotoGP Le Mans (Bugatti) Race
1pm 45 laps DTM Valencia Race
1pm 1 hour FIA GT1 World Brno Champ race
1pm 45 minutes Superleague Magny-Cours Race 2
1pm Formula 2 Monza Race 2
2pm 15 minutes Superleague Magny-Cours Superfinal
2.20pm 9 laps WTCC Monza Race 2
6pm 6 hours IndyCar Indianapolis Motor Speedway Bump Day

Enjoy the racing!

Weekend Preview: 21-22 November 2009

This is the final Weekend Preview of the season, thanks for reading and I hope these posts have been useful!

Windsor Arch 56th Macau Grand Prix

– Guia Circuit, Macau, PRC
Live Timing from MST (note this link is for all non-WTCC races at the circuit this week)
– with WTCC (see below), FBMW Pacific and a host of regional championships

The classic Formula 3 event attracts competitors from the Euroseries and the Japanese and British series, I am not sure if the Australians also attend? I am always surprised at how fast the F3 cars look at this course, the long straight sections mean the cars are in high gearing, low downforce trim which while fast on the open road, the drivers have to struggle with through the narrow twisty part of the track.

The Macau Grand Prix format for F3 is for a 10-lap Qualification Race on Saturday at 1.45pm Macau time, followed by the 15-lap Grand Prix on Sunday at 3.30pm their time. That’s about 4.30am here… I think.

I can’t find any live UK TV coverage!
I can’t find any recorded coverage either.

FIA World Touring Car Championship

– Marriott Race of Macau
– Guia Circuit, Macau, PRC
– and www.fiawtcc.com
Live Timing from MST (WTCC only, for F3 use the link in the Macau GP section above)
– Final round

The usual format of two equal-length races on Sunday of just 9 laps each around this long circuit, that’s good for the normal race time of about 25 minutes. It might be short but there’s action all the way at Macau!

This is Tom Coronel in the 2007 race.

UK TV: There is continuous coverage encompassing both races from 4am UK time, with only a short break between races (which is utterly crazy with the damage this place can cause). It is repeated at 11.35am on Eurosport 2.

NASCAR Sprint Cup

– Ford 400
– Homestead Miami Speedway, Homestead, Florida, USA
– UK TV: SKY SPORTS XTRA at 8pm Sunday
– US TV: LIVE on ABC at 2.30pm ET Sunday

Jimmie Johnson holds a large points lead going into the final round of the long, long NASCAR year. He’s pretty much guaranteed unless there’s one of those famous crashes all the “fans” apparently want to see, although since they pay points just for turning up perhaps they should give him the Cup now…

NASCAR Nationwide Series

– Ford 300
– Homestead Miami Speedway, Homestead, Florida, USA
– US TV: LIVE on ESPN2 at 4pm ET Saturday (not covered in UK)

Speaking of just turning up, Kyle Busch only needs to start this race to secure the 2nd tier title.

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

– Ford 200
– Homestead Miami Speedway, Homestead, Florida, USA
– US TV: LIVE on SPEED at 7.30pm ET Friday (not covered in UK)

I know nothing of this series and I’m not sure I know anyone who does..

Intercontinental Rally Challenge

– Rally of Scotland
– Perth to Stirling, Scotland

This is the IRC’s maiden visit to the UK. There will be updates throughout the weekend on Eurosport including live stages! Tune at 8.45am and 4pm Friday, 9am and 1.45pm Saturday, and 6am and 7.15pm Sunday.

Australian V8 Supercars

– Barbagallo, Australia
– Penultimate round

Weekend Preview 5-6 December 2009

Just for completeness, the final round of V8s is in two weeks’ time:

Australian V8 Supercars

– Oran Park, Australia

That’s it! After these races the 2009 season is over. The first event of 2010 is the Dakar which is in South America again in early January, then the IRC opens the ‘regular’ season with the Monte Carlo Rally on the weekend of the 23rd. The first circuit race of note is the Daytona 24 Hours at the end of January, a mere two months away.

Thanks to the following sources this season:
Autosport magazine;

Weekend Preview: 14-15 November 2009

There is only one major race meeting this weekend, with each of NASCAR’s three main divisions holding their penultimate races of the season at Phoenix this weekend. The season will end at Homestead next week.

NASCAR Sprint Cup

– Checker O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 presented by Pennzoil
– Phoenix International Raceway, Phoenix, Arizona, USA
– 1-mile oval
– UK TV: SKY SPORTS XTRA at 8pm Sunday
– US TV: LIVE on ABC at 2.30pm ET Sunday

NASCAR Nationwide Series

– Able Body Labor 200
– Phoenix International Raceway, Phoenix, Arizona, USA
– US TV: LIVE on ESPN2 at 4pm ET Saturday (not covered in UK)

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

– Lucas Oil 150
– Phoenix International Raceway, Phoenix, Arizona, USA
– US TV: LIVE on SPEED at 7.30pm ET Friday (not covered in UK)

That’s it! Nothing else. There is more happening next week when I will post the final Weekend Preview of 2009.

Weekend Preview: 7-8 Nov 2009

Pretty much all of the major events of the 2009 season are now in the history books so this series is winding down. I’ll keep going in a reduced format as long as there is something notable going on.

Feature Events


– GP Generali de la Comunitat Valenciana
– Circuit Ricardo Tormo
– Valencia, Spain
– (17/17)
– 250cc (last ever), 125cc, etc

Valencia is the traditional finale to the MotoGP season and this year is no exception. Reasonable circuit, seems to me MotoGP is the only series to actually produce decent racing at this track. The title having been won, the only thing of note that I can think of is the demise of the 250cc support class, to be replaced by the new Moto2 category in 2010.

UK: LIVE on BBC Two at 12.30pm

Other Events

Single Seater:

Superleague Formula

– Jarama
– Jarama, Spain
– (6/6)
– Eurosport: Race 1 live on E2 at 9am Sunday // Race 2 live on E2 at 11.30am Sunday // Shootout live on E2 at 12.30pm

The only open-wheel action this week outside of SudamF3 is the SF finale at Jarama, which could be fun. I’ve never seen a race at Jarama and apparently these cars make the frankly ridiculous concept of the series worth checking out.

Stock Car:

NASCAR Sprint Cup

– Dickies 500
– Texas Motor Speedway, Forth Worth, Texas, USA
– UK TV: SKY SPORTS XTRA at 8.30pm Sunday
– US TV: LIVE on ABC at 12.30pm ET Sunday

I can’t make sense of this. I’ve double-checked and Sky says 8.30pm is live. ABC says 12.30pm is live. There is not an 8hr time difference between ET and UK and I can’t believe there is a 3hr pre-race show.

NASCAR Nationwide Series

– O’Reilly Challenge
– Texas Motor Speedway, Forth Worth, Texas, USA
– US TV: LIVE on ESPN2 at 12pm ET Saturday (not covered in UK)

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

– Winstar World Casino 350
– Texas Motor Speedway, Forth Worth, Texas, USA
– US TV: LIVE on SPEED at 8.30pm ET Friday (not covered in UK)

Sports Car / Touring Car:

V8 Supercars

– Phillip Island
– Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia

Super GT

– Twin-Ring Motegi
– Motegi, Japan

Also for those in the UK I believe the new series of Top Gear begins on Sunday.

* * * *
FORIX (sub req.)
Live Sport on TV
Series websites as mentioned
Autosport magazine