As the new DTM season kicks off at its usual
playground in Hockenheim, the teams (Audi, Aston Martin and BMW) are well and
ready prepared for the season opener. A recent pre-season test at the Lausitzring saw
18 drivers from the three teams clocked an incredible 3,921 laps between Monday
Aston Martin debuts in DTM
The Aston Martin Vantage DTM was unveiled in early
March during a pre-season test. The car is a collaboration between Vynamic
GmbH, a joint venture between AF Racing AG and HWA AG. The Aston Martin DTM
outfit will be managed by Team R-Motorsport.
The new DTM debutant ran two Aston Martin
Vantage DTMs for its four drivers, setting a ninth-fastest time of 1:36.345
with Jake Dennis behind the wheel in the final pre-season test.
Audi and BMW: a two-way fight for DTM honors
Audi finished the final pre-season test with the fastest overall lap-time (Robin Frijns 1:35.169). Meanwhile, BMW only got sixth-fastest in overall time (1:35.884 for Joel Eriksson). The BMW squad ran three BMW M4 DTMs with six factory drivers.
After the test, Audi looks the strongest with
all eight RS 5 DTMs. The brand’s eight factory drivers Loïc Duval, Robin Frijns,
Jamie Green, Nico Müller, René Rast and Mike Rockenfeller completed 6,642
kilometers (1,414 laps) in total from Monday to Thursday. In addition, Audi’s
customer team, WRT Team Audi Sport, with its two DTM rookies, Jonathan Aberdein
and Pietro Fittipaldi, drove 469 laps.
The BMW squad with their six drivers completed
over 1,250 laps and 5,500 kilometers at the final pre-season test. BMW Team
RBM, BMW Team RMG and the drivers used the test to prepare themselves and the
2019 BMW M4 DTM for the start of the season.
At the heart of the race car is the new BMW P48 turbo engine, which was developed from scratch in accordance with Class 1 regulations. The BMW M4 DTM has also been modified extensively in many other areas.
We are all geared up for the start of the 2019 DTM season, are you?
In an eventful Grand
Prix of the Americas in Austin, TX, Reigning Champion Marc Marquez has finally
been dethroned, but it was actually a crash that forced retirement. And guess who
won the race? It was a certain Suzuki rider Alex Rins, who scored his first ever
win in MotoGP. For Suzuki, it was their second since 2016 Silverstone.
The 20-lap race
had Marquez, who was on pole, written all over it, but the defending champion
would lose the front of the bike and had to retire from the race. With him out
of the picture, the field was open for anyone to take. Marquez got off the line
ahead of Rossi and Crutchlow. Rins, meanwhile, was in the top five. As several
riders started to tumble, the field became thin in the early stint.
Fufteen laps to go, Rossi had a comfortable space between himself and his pursuer Crutchlow, particularly when the LCR Honda rider crashed out moments later. Marquez led Rossi by almost 3 seconds. Another three laps in, Marquez would drop out of the race as he took a tumble at turn 12 on lap 9. He lost the front-end of the bike.
mid-distance of the race, Rossi now led the race while Rins had already placed
himself in second right behind the 9-time champion. It was Yamaha vs Suzuki
Rins planned a victory charge for the last few laps, before executing a great pass on Rossi for the lead. Rins came through to pass Rossi, but the veteran tried to retaliate. He lost 0.5s in that block attempt. The number 46 rider was making an attempt to undo the damage, inching closer, but he ran wide with two laps to go, meaning he had to do the work all over again. He wasn’t giving up, though. In the last lap Rossi managed to make up a lot of time and was looking threatening behind Rins in the final sector, but ultimately he came just 0.462s short as they crossed the finish line. Rins remained calm under pressure from the 9-time champion to earn his first ever MotoGP win. Third was Jack Miller followed by the Ducati of Andrea Dovizioso. The second Ducati of Danilo Petrucci was sixth, behind Franco Morbidelli.
Dovizioso had a strong and consistent pace throughout and finished just nine tenths of a second behind Miller. His team mate progressively climbed his way back through the field to claim sixth position half-way through the race. The Italian rider then increased the gap from the riders behind him and defended the position until the checkered flag.
Dovi tops the riders standings, 3 points up on Val. Rossi.
The second Repsol Honda of Jorge Lorenzo also retired from the race. That meant both Repsol Honda came up empty-handed in the Race of the Americas.
Up next Is the GP
of Spain at the iconic Jerez circuit, from 3 – 5 May.
The MotoGP contingent is ready for Round 3 at the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin, TX. This round is the final fly-away race before the European leg.
Marquez won the GP of Argentina last time round in a rather dominating way. But, the highlight of the race was the exciting battle between Valentino Rossi and Championship contender Andrea Dovizioso. Rossi came up tops in that one.
It won’t be easy for anyone as the COTA has proven to be a happy hunting ground for Marquez, who has. won all six MotoGP races at the Austin track. Marquez’s riding style and the strengths of the Honda RC213V have always excelled at the Americas GP. A warning shot for Dovizioso and the factory Yamaha riders.
Team mate Jorge Lorenzo is excited to see how he will perform on his new machine. After two races, with a deeper understanding of the bike, the former champion should get things started and challenge the top riders for a podium spot.
Rossi, after securing a hard-fought second place, currently
holds third place in the standings and would love nothing more than to climb up
the order after this weekend‘s race. He has had a couple of podiums at COTA in
2015 and 2017.
Yeam mate Maverick Vinales counts himself lucky to have escaped
injury after an unfortunate crash in Argentina. Due to the incident he has
dropped to 11th place in the rankings, but he arrives in the USA determined to
put the experience behind him and get back on the podium at COTA, which he has
visited frequently. His best finish at COTA in MotoGP was a runner-up spot,
Dovizioso, who took a win and a third place this season so
far, is currently second in the championship with 41 points to his tally and is
keen to extend the podium streak to cut the gap from the lead, which is
currently only four points.
Dovizioso scored his personal best result at COTA in 2015, when he finished second. He looks for a strong finish this season, with the speed and dependability of the GP11.
Team mate Danilo Petrucci, sixth in both races in 2019, is
also determined to improve his personal statistics at Austin, where his best
position at the finish is 8th (in 2017) and to continue his progress and get
closer to the podium.
The action kicks off with the practice sessions, followed
by the qualifiers on Saturday and the race on Sunday.
Reigning Champion Lewis Hamilton scored his
first win at the Bahrain Grand Prix in Manama, Round 2 of the Formula 1 World
Championships. Ir was Hamilton’s third win at the desert track. Team mate
Valtteri Bottas came home second, and together with Hamilton, claimed Mercedes’
1000th point in F1. With
second place, Bottas continues to lead the drivers standings with 44 points, just
a point up on Hamilton.
Ferrari’s rookie Charles LeClerc who took his very pole on Saturday controlled the race from the start, but an engine issue would force a more careful drive and nearly cost him a podium spot. He would finish behind the Mercedes cars.
In the Constructors, no one could touch Mercedes
with 87 points. Ferrari is closest with 48 points.
Mercedes cars didn’t have the best of starts as they started from row 2. The front group were the Ferraris, Mercedes and a Red Bull. Vettel led from Bottas and LeClerc at the start. It was a Ferrari 1 – 2 moments later as LeClerc jumped ahead After the stop, Mercedes cars took the top spot from the Ferraris and never looked back.
Bad news came when LeClerc’s car had an engine
fault and couldn’t go max speed on the straights, during the most critical
stage of the race. He struggled to keep the car in place but drifted further
and further away from the Mercedes cars. Verstappen closed in for the bite in
the last laps, but a safety car period due to the stranded Renaults at the end
of the race saved LeClerc’s podium spot as Verstappen had clamped him down for
the third spot. Vettel, too, had a disappointing race after losing positions
and ended up fifth.
Lando Norris took sixth from Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Raikkonen The second Red Bull of Pierre Gasly was eighth, followed by Alexander Albon, ninth, and Sergio Perez, tenth.
Reigning Champion and pre-race favorite Marc Marquez has captured
his first win of the year at the Termas de Rio Hondo, home of the MotoGP Round
2 race in Argentina. Though Marquez won the race, Valentino Rossi was the real
highlight of the race as the Doctor pushed to the limits and finished in a
remarkable runner-up spot. Third place
went to the first round winner, Andrea Dovizioso.
Marquez had a lightning start from pole and was quickly up by a second ahead of everyone else after just a lap. From there, the defending champion never once looked back. Rossi, meanwhile, started strong from fourth on the grid and held his position in the first corner, and shortly after moved up to second place. He aimed to prevent any riders from checking out at the front but didn’t succeed, as he fell back to fifth in the busy group. Not for long, though: he steadily worked his way back up. Dovizioso, too, was among the leaders as he feld second for most of the race.
Up front, Marquez was able to pull away lap after lap and
had a 12-second at the three-quarters mark. In an amazing last dash to the
finish line, Rossi decided to make his move to tussle with Dovizioso for second
place. The pair gradually broke away from the others. The Yamaha rider observed
the riding style of his rival and perfectly picked the place and moment to
pounce: on the last lap, in Turn 7, he put his YZR-M1 on the inside and made it
stick. He crossed the line in second place 9.816s from first.
Marquez was the winner and his win was accompanied the biggest
winning margin in a dry MotoGP race, The Champion’s previous best coming at the
2016 Argentina GP (a gap of 7.679s) and is his 45th win in the
premier class. Marquez leaves Argentina with 45 points and the championship
Fourth was the Satellite Pramac Racing Jack Miller who
topped factory riders Alex Rins (Suzuki)
and Dnailo Petrucci (Ducati). Seventh through tenth were the Satellite teams.
MotoGP circus prepares to travel to Austin, Texas for round
three at the Red Bull Gran Prix of The Americas, 12 – 14 April.
After an exciting season-opener in Qatar, MotoGP prepares for Round 2 at familiar grounds of Termas de Rio in Argentina. The Argentine round is one of the longest races in the championship at over 120 kilometers across 25 laps. Characterized by multiple long straights, demanding left-hand corners and often-unpredictable weather, the race has produced five different premier class winners in six years.
Reigning Champion Marc Marquez is eager to sought his
revenge after a close-shave battle with Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso, who won the
first race. Marquez has a brilliant record at Termas with two wins previously,
the only premier class rider to win there more than once. “We started well in Qatar and fought
until the end for victory. The goal is of course to do the same in Argentina
and take as many points as possible. Time between the two races has been good,
I was able to return training with a motocross bike and I feel confident for
Team mate Jorge Lorenzo had a first race to forget, but he vows to come back strong in Argentina. The multiple Champion will continue to learn and adapt to the RC213V machine. After a physically punishing weekend, where it was later revealed he had sustained a fissure to one of his ribs, Lorenzo and the team are aiming for a smooth weekend.
Following a good weekend in Qatar, Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci, who finished 1st and 6th , hope to continue their consistent results in Argentina. Dovizioso rode with all his might and experience to fend off Marquez for the win. He feels that the bike has a superb straight line speed, but needs improvement on the corners. “We need to improve our corner speed. This year there are plenty of quick riders and it’ll be crucial not to lose too many points on less favorable tracks.”
Petrucci on his
full factory squad stint is confident to support his championship leading team
mate. He aims to finish in the top five, given the bike’s praise-worthy
Factory Yamaha MotoGP riders Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales need to answer their rivals in a hurry, otherwise it’d be a long and arduous season for the proud MotoGP squad. Rossi was just 0.6s off the victory at the opening round, despite starting from fourteenth. He showed great potential of this year’s YZR-M1.
In Argentina, Rossi is big with the South American fans. The nine-time champion hopes to not disappoint his fans there and aims for a podium finish, like he did in 2015 with a win. In 2016 and 2017, he took scored second on both occasion.
Though he didn’t end the first race of the season as high as he would have liked, Viñales took the positives from the first weekend in Losail and is motivated to show his speed again at Termas. Vinales had a win in Argentina two years ago, but he struggled here last year in a slightly chaotic and challenging race, but he still took home solid points, securing fifth position. This year he wants to feel competitive again, so he can duplicate the 2017 result.
The action in Argentina starts a bit later than usual, from Malaysian time.As always, practice, practice/qualifying 1, qualifying 2 and raceday.
Leona, who was recently awarded
the country’s Most Inspiring Female Motorsports Athlete, proved once again that
she could stand up to the best on the grid, especially the male counterparts.
Despite an electrical issue
on her Silver Samurai, teddy bear-cladded Evo7, Leona took a podium spot in
race 2 thanks to some slick work by her team mechanics.
All in all, Leona’s starting weekend of racing was a decent
warm-up for the most sought-after female racer in the country. A couple of podium
finishes and an overall third place in the rankings weren’t bad at all for a
Up next, Leona aims to participate in the Malaysian Championship
Series (MCS) for a full season. The MCS features 10 races over a span of five months.
The MCS first round starts in April, with each round featuring two races. :Leona’s
race interests aren’t just for domestic events, but International as well. She
is linked to the China GT series and Lamborghini Super Trofeo. Her next step is
to secure sponsors for her race exploits and bring her sponsors to the wonderful
world of motorsports, The MCS costs RM200,000 for the season, while the China GT
and Lamborghini ST cost RM300,000 for a race weekend.
Leona’s determination and grit shine bright on the racetracks, which
could in turn benefit her sponsors in many ways. Over the years, she has
developed into quite a popular ambassador or spokesperson for renowned brands
such as; Mitsubishi Motors, Petron, GoPro and more. If you’re not part of the Leona bandwagon, then
we suggest you search for her on the social media or youtube, or better yet
Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton captured the season-epener in Melbourne. The Mercedes drivers dominated the race from their usual rivals, the Red Bulls and Ferraris. Best finisher for Red Bull was Max Verstappen, while Ferrari’s top driver was Sebastien Vettel, who was fourth. Vettel’s team mate and Ferrari rookie Charles Le Clerc took fifth spot, ahead of Hass’ Kevvin Magnussen. The top six drivers finished with a lap advantage to the drivers in positions 7th through 10th. The results proved that the top-tiered guys are far faster than the mid-tiered and bottom-rung teams.
For Bottas, it was only his fourth F1 win, and the 1-2 finish meant a 45th time for the Silver Arrows in F1. Mercedes top the Constructors with 44 points from Ferrari (22).
Bottas led the pack from the starting grid,
followed by Hamilton and LeClerc, who overtook the Red Bull of Verstappen.
Verstappen had Vettel all over his rear view mirrors, but managed to hold his
position. Behind them, Daniel Ricciardo lost his car’s front wing as he tried a
move on the grass. He had to pit for a new nose. Verstappen sneaked past
LeClerc on lap 3, who ran wide in a tussle with Vettel.
Up front, Bottas had a 2.0 seconds lead and stretched the lead by another second on lap 10. A couple of laps later, a McLaren was out of the race; when the Carlos Sainz’ car went up in flames on track.
The first round of stops was scheduled on lap 15, with the race leaders stopping a lap later starting with Hamilton. The reigning champion retook the track, ahead of Vettel. They were fourth and fifth.
Bottas was in a clear lead as he worked a fastest lap to extend lead from Verstappen and
LeClerc. Meantime, Vetstappen was trying to extend the gap time from his
chasers, namely Hamilton and Vettel.
Before half-distance of the race, Bottas made his tyre swap; a one and only stop. He rejoined second behind the Red Bull. Who’d to pit again. On lap 26 of 58, Verstappen made his stop and the lead went back to Bottas. At that point, Hamilton was complaining about his depleting tyres, which could force an unnecessary stop. But, it didn’t take a turn for the worse.
After his race-start incident, Ricciardo
would have to retire from his home race from a damaged part on his RS19. Back at the front, the two Mercedes led
Vettel, Verstappen and LeClerc. Verstappen quickly beat Vettel for third on an outside
move at turn 3. He was only 2-sec from Hamilton.
In the ensuing laps, Verstappen tried to chase down the defending champion but
Hamilton held firm.
In the closing laps, Bottas was sailing home for the win at the season-opener. Hamilton had to watch out for the flying Dutchman, who’s just 1.5s behind. Fourth and fifth were the Ferraris, as LeClerc closed tha gap to Vettel from 12s to 4s. Verstappen chased down the Mercedes hard, until he ran on to the grass and basically conceded second to Hamilton,
In the final five laps, LeClerc was within 2s from his team mate. The Ferraris were a full stop away from the Haas of Magnussen. A fastest lap for Bottas on the final lap ensured the win and a bonus point. Hamilton held off a hard charging Verstappen. The Ferraris settled with Vettel’s fourth and LeClerc’s fifth. Aside from Magnussen, the rest of the field were a lap behind.
Bottas commented in post-race, “We could not
have asked for a better start to the season – getting maximum points for the
team is a perfect result and we couldn’t be happier. The key was the start; I
think Lewis may have had a bit of wheel spin, so I was able to take the lead.
My race pace was really strong, I could pull away and build a gap. In the end,
I managed to get the fastest lap as well, which of course means an extra point
this season, so I went for it. It can be a little risky with worn tyres, but I
had it all under control.”
The first race of the new season was an exciting affair as
Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso won a head-to-head battle against Reigning MotoGP
Champion Marc Marquez. Dovizioso was able to repeat the win from last year
after 22 laps of non-stop fight with the Repsol Honda ace. In the end, the
Italian won by just 23 thousandths of a second
from the Spaniard.
LCR’s Cal Crutchlow topped Suzuki’s Alex Rins and the factory Yamaha of Valentino Rossi for third and the final podium spot.
Off the block, Dovizioso shot to the lead, with Marquez hot on his tracks.,along with Rins who trailed the duo. Rossi, due to a poor qualifying position, had to start from 14th on the grid, but it only took a couple of laps for him to climb up to 10th.
Up front. yhere was a frantic melee between the leading seven riders playing out over the next 20 laps. Marquez held a brief lead from Dovizioso within the 20-lap span, but Dovizioso made short work of it. Maverick Vinales was amongst the top seven, before Rossi quickly caught with the pack. Before long, a certain Franco Morbidelli passed the Doctor with 12 laps to go but the Italian didn’t let up. Two laps later, the Doctor returned the favor, using the slipstream to overtake his compatriot going into turn 1.
By three quarters of the race, Dovizioso and Marquez were in their own world and the rest just tagged along. Rossi overtook his team mate after lap 15, then Joan Mir and Danilo Petrucci. In the final laps. Rossi would finish 0.600secs from the top.
Marquez made one last dash for
the lead but Dovizioso covered his lines well to prevent that. Elsewhere, Petrucci
rode a solid race, recovering several positions after suffering a non-optimal
start from third row. After climbing back to third, Petrucci faced a small drop
and finished the race in sixth, only two seconds behind his teammate.
Dovizioso rode remarkably despite the slippery conditions, “I’m super happy about this win, especially because after the tests I wouldn’t have expected to be so fast. We stayed focused and we made progress in each session. Our strategy in the race was simply to preserve the tyre, and this made the difference, but it wasn’t easy because I led for most of the race and I couldn’t really study my opponents. Marquez gave it everything he could, as usual, and pushed me to the limit.”
Vinales would end up seventh, ahead of Suzuki’s Joan Mir, LCR’s Takaaki Nakagami and Aprilla’s Alexi Espargaro. Jorge Lorenzo’s debut with Repsol Honda was heavily restricted by lingering pain in his back and shoulder, after heavy crashes a day before. Focusing on his own rhythm and understanding the Honda over race distance, Lorenzo battled to 13th to earn three points.
The MotoGP will be back in action in three weeks’ time at the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit for the Argentine GP, held from 29th – 31st March.
2019 MotoGP Losail Circuit results
DOVIZIOSO ITA Mission Winnow Ducati Ducati 166.6 42’36.902
MARQUEZ SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 166.6 +0.023
CRUTCHLOW GBR LCR Honda CASTROL Honda 166.6 +0.320
4 Alex RINS SPA Team
SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki 166.6 +0.457
ROSSI ITA Monster
Energy Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 166.6 +0.600
PETRUCCI ITA Mission Winnow Ducati Ducati 166.4 +2.320
Ahead of the 2019 F1 Season, Renault F1 Team has confirmed its full driver line-up. Ex-Red Bull Daniel Ricciardo , Nico Hulkenberg, Jack Aitken (test and reserve), Sergey Sirotkin (Test and reserve) and Guanyu Zhou (Driver development) form the line-up for the team.
Ricciardo is familiar with Renault as he had previously raced with Red Bull, fitted with a Renault engine. The Australian debut in F1 with Red Bull in 2009, testing for Red Bull. He then moved up to a full seat with Toro Rosso in 2011 and performed admirably.He next raced for HRT for a stint before going back to Toro Rosso for two seasons in 2012/13, After a successful stint at STR, he graduated to a full seat at Red Bull in 2014 where he would remain until the 2018 season. Up to this point, Ricciardo has 7 race wins under his belt, with 3 pole positions and 13 fastest laps in nine seasons in F1.
After a successful stint at STR, he graduated to a full seat at Red Bull in 2014m where he would remain until the 2018 season. Up to this point, Ricciardo has 7 race wins under his belt, with 3 pole positions and 13 fastest laps in nine seasons in F1.
Hülkenberg is now a veteran at Renault, after two full seasons with the team, The German started his F1 career with Williams in 2010 where he showed very promising performances. His impressive debut season convinced Force India to sign him up for the 2011 season, where he spent two seasons. He then shifted to Sauber for a season, before returning to Force India for the 2014 season and two more seasons. By 2017, he moved up to Renault and became the team’s lead driver. He will take on his third full season at Renault in the 2019 season. Hulkenberg has a pole position and two fastest laps in his
Renault’s test and reserve drivers Sirotkin and Aitken are two promising rookies to join the team’s program. Sirotkin is well accustomed to modern Formula 1 machinery. After spells as Renault Test Driver in 2016 and Third & Reserve Driver in 2017, the Russian graduated to a full-time F1 race seat in 2018 with Williams. Besides racing with Renault, the Russian will race with SMP Racing in the WEC (World Endurance Championship).
Aitken graduated from the Renault Sport Academy in 2019 after a three-year tenure, during which time he competed in the GP3 Series and Formula 2 Championship. He took one race win last year as a rookie in the Formula 1 support series, to which he will be returning this year with the Campos Racing team as part of his development program.
Sirotkin said, “We are well acquainted with the team, I spenttthe whole of 2017 in their factory and in the garage. It will be interesting to learn how far Renault has advanced in the development of the car over the past year; last season we were rivals and I could not see the work from the inside.”
“It’s a great feeling to continue with Renault F1 Team and I’m grateful for this opportunity. I’ve been part of the team since 2016, so to remain for a fourth season is a privilege and I’m determined to repay Renault’s faith in me. I drove the Formula 1 car a couple of times last year and I can’t wait to sample the Renault R.S.19 this season in the rookie tests and give my best to develop the package in any way I can. Last year was a lot about learning, but I feel ready this season to do the job and get the results I’m aiming for as I continue my development pathway within Renault,” Aitken added.