Okay, get ready:
Scott Steckly, the 2011 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series champion, will again be sponsored by Canadian Tire during the 2012 Canadian Tire Series season and the opening race will be held May 20 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.
To say that Canadian Tire is an aggressive sponsor of motorsport in Canada would be an understatement. It is a partner and a promoter and a supporter of the sport and it sure would be swell if other Canadian corporations would follow suit. But I’ll leave that for another day.
“I’m grateful for the support I’ve received from Canadian Tire and their continued support of motorsports in Canada,” said two-time series champion Steckly.
In addition to the NASCAR Canadian Tire series and driver sponsorships, Canada’s largest automotive retailer announced earlier this year a long term partnership with Mosport International Raceway, north of Bowmanville, and this resulted in the name change.
NHRA Pro Stock icon Bill “Grumpy” Jenkins, an internal combustion engine surgeon and legendary figure in the sport of drag racing, died Thursday at age 81.
Jenkins won 13 NHRA national event wins but was known more for building unbeatable engines for drag racing competition. According to National Speed Sport News staff, he built the first dry-sump oiling system, the electric water-pump fan, the first kickout oil pans, Pro Stock strut-style front suspension, gas port pistons and slick-shift manual transmissions.
“Everyone at NHRA is saddened by the passing of Bill ‘Grumpy’ Jenkins, not only a pioneer in the sport, but also an iconic figure in NHRA Pro Stock racing,” said Tom Compton, president, NHRA.
“He was there from the beginning, playing an integral role in the formation of Pro Stock and remained involved in NHRA for decades. His presence and trademark gruff exterior and cigar will be missed but never forgotten at the starting line at NHRA Full Throttle events.”
Ed Moody, editor-in-chief of publications emanating from Corner Two at Mosport (oops, Canadian Tire Motorsports Park) and frequent contributor to Inside Track Motorsport News magazine, was at the IZOD IndyCar Series race at St. Petersburg, Fla., last weekend and sent the following message after James Hinchcliffe of Oakville finished fourth, driving for Go-Daddy after Danica Patrick defected to NASCAR:
“Happy camp in the Go-Daddy team. Hinch is flying to Indy, then driving to Barber for next week (the series is at Barber Motorsport Park in Alabama this weekend). He is working the crowd hard and never fails to stop and sign an autograph. I think Go-Daddy is going to be pleasantly surprised with not only his talent but his marketing ability. He has been voted ‘sexiest male driver’ by all the other drivers.”
J.R. Fitzpatrick of Cambridge and the No. 60 Equipment Express team will return to action Saturday afternoon as the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series takes to the shortest track on the NASCAR circuit – the half-mile “paper clip” of Martinsville Speedway.
Fitzpatrick will make his third career start at the Virginia short track. In his two previous starts, Fitzpatrick has logged all but two laps and finished 21st both times.
He ended final practice today (Friday) in 15th place, just a tenth of a second off the pole time. Qualifying will take place tomorrow morning.
"I am really impressed that we put a top 15 time on the board," he said. "I made a mistake on my second and fastest lap and felt that the truck was good enough for a top five lap."
For the TV channel and time of the green flag - for this weekend’s NASCAR races as well as the Indy cars in Alabama - always remember to consult George’s TV listings for race fans on the home page of wheels.ca
Talking of IndyCar, a test has been scheduled for April 4 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to give all teams experience running the big track with the new Dallara DW12 chassis and whatever engine — Honda, Chevrolet or Lotus — they’re running. One car per team. No rookies; their orientation will take place later.
Note to a commenter re the TV delay of F1 radio transmissions - yes, I know we hear them well after the driver hears them but the point remains the same: Perez, like many people since, might have been trying to decipher the meaning of the message and that lapse of concentration resulted in a mistake.