Back in 1992, Charlotte Motor Speedway officials recognized that a need existed for an affordable race car that was easy to maintain. With increasing race car costs, car counts dropped, with an estimated 30% to 40% of North America’s cars not competing due to costs. Research revealed that tracks with lower cost cars saw far greater participation. Thus, US Legend Cars, Inc. was introduced in January 1992, with the aim of creating an affordable race car that could race on smaller tracks and had lower maintenance costs. The first Legends Car debuted in April 1992, and since then the sport has grown tremendously.
Legends Car racing falls under the “spec” class of racing as all the vehicles are mechanically alike. The cars must use the same parts, tires and engine, with regulated adjustments being permitted on gearing, camber and caster, tire pressure, ride height, spring rates and wheelbase. These specifications help to keep the cost of the cars down. A selection of body styles are available for Legends Car racing, including the following: 1934 Chevrolet Coupe, 1934 Ford Coupe, 1934 Ford Sedan, 1937 Chevrolet Sedan, 1937 Ford Sedan, 1937 Dodge Coupe, and 1937 Dodge Sedan.
Championships for Legends Car racing are held in the USA, Canada, England and Scotland, with the World finals taking place in the USA. In the USA, Legends Car drivers are placed in four divisions: Pro Division, Masters Division (40 years and older), Semi-Pro (novice) and Young Lions Division (12 to 16 years). Cars are the same no matter which division the driver participates in. Other countries where Legends Car racing has expanded to include France, Belgium, Spain, Finland, Estonia, Mexico and Australia.
Legends Car racing, which is sanctioned by INEX, Corp., is promoted as a family-oriented sport and is open to people of all sorts. If this form of racing interests you, take note of these helpful pointers for starting up (as offered by U.S. Legend Cars International):
1. Find a Legends Car dealer
2. Take a Legends Car for a test drive
3. Find a driving school and schedule lessons
4. Purchase a Legends Car if you decide it’s for you
5. Find out about Legends Car races at your local track
6. Ensure your Legends Car is up to spec and you are familiar with the rulebook
With history going back to its first FIM organized event in 1949, Grand Prix motorcycle racing is an international series which has gathered a loyal following of fans who turn out in droves to watch driver and machine become as one as they compete for the checkered flag. As the main championship of motorcycle road racing, the Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix is divided into three categories: 125cc, Moto2, and MotoGP. Setting the Grand Prix series apart from other motorcycle racing series, such as the Superbike World Championship, is the fact that the motorcycles competing in the Grand Prix are built specifically for racing and therefore cannot be bought at a dealership and are not licensed to ride on public roads.
The MotoGP series consists of eighteen races, held in fourteen countries, on four continents, with global television coverage ensuring that fans all over the world can share in the excitement. Currently seven nationalities are represented among the riders who line the starting grid, with four manufacturers – Ducati, Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki – providing the latest in motorcycle technology.
Now in its 62nd year, MotoGP is not only the premier motorcycle racing world championship, but it is also the longest running championship series. Under the supervision of the FIM, the series is managed by Dorna Sports and has been since 1992. With more than 2.2 million people attending races in 2009, there is no doubt that spectators appreciate the effort put into the organization of each of the eighteen events, which feature races in each of the three categories.
The 125cc category is the stepping stone into this exciting sport. The minimum age for riders is 15 years, with the maximum set at 28 years – the exception being for wild-card riders, or riders who are newly contracted and competing in a 125 cc event for the first time, where the minimum age will be 25 years. Maximum engine displacement in this category is 125cc single-cylinder units. As announced in December 2008, from 2010 the 250cc category has been replaced by Moto2 – a 4-stroke class aimed at being a cost-effective, but prestigious, class to accompany the star of the show, the MotoGP.
Recognized as the ultimate test for motorcycle racing’s finest talents, MotoGP allows a maximum engine capacity of 800cc (4-stroke engines) and the motorcycle must be a prototype. The minimum age for riders competing in the MotoGP class is 18 years. Fiat Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi is the current MotoGP World Champion, having claimed his seventh premier class title in 2009.
There is a new landmark that can be seen from outer space, and it is located next to the Pocono Raceway in Long Pond. A massive solar power field has been erected by the Pocono Raceway to break ground as the first sport facility to be run on sustainable energy. Their dedication to the environment and to becoming leaders in the field of sustainable energy in the sports industry, has earned Pocono Raceway and NASCAR praise and admiration. It is hoped that once other sporting facilities recognise the potential and advantages of sustainable energy, they too will make the necessary changes to promote an environmentally friendly industry.
The piece of land utilised for the construction of the solar field belongs to the racecourse and was used for parking until the course was able to provide alternative parking spaces for its thousands of NASCAR enthusiasts. Each solar panel is three mega-watts, and to harness enough power to run the entire racecourse a staggering 39 962 solar panels were installed. The solar field covers an area of twenty-five acres and the solar panels form part of a photovoltaic ground mounted system. President of the Pocono Raceway, Brandon Igdalsky, explained the reasoning behind the solar field, saying: “Pocono Raceway strongly believes in the NASCAR industry’s commitment to operate in a more environmentally responsible way and is proud to be the first race track to power our sport with clean, renewable sunlight as the world’s largest solar-powered sports facility. This solar power system, built with timber, steel and solar panels made in the U.S., satisfies all our Raceway’s energy needs, while helping to power local homes. This project demonstrates real sustainability and proves that any business that truly wants to go green can do it.”
The huge undertaking of developing the solar power field was taken on by enXco. NASCAR voiced their approval through the CEO and President of NASCAR, Brian France, confirming NASCAR’s dedication to developing renewable energy, and is excited to be a part of the sustainable energy adventure that Pocono Raceway is embarking on. They have become a testing ground for renewed energy sources, and new innovative technology that will assist in conserving the environment. They are beginning to pave the way for other industries, and are a brilliant example to other sports facilities and organizations.
The Virgin Racing F1 Team and FxPro Financial Services Ltd (FxPro), a leading global retail broker in FX and CFDs, has launched an exciting new racing game that pits online players against each other for the chance to win VIP tickets to F1 races, football matches and other great sporting experiences.
The FxPro Currency Race is an online game and combines the thrill of F1 Racing with the high-pressure currency trading market. Online racers will be asked to choose a currency pair at the start of the race and their speed around the track will depend on its performance on global financial markets during that lap. The race will take place in real time. Each race winner will earn points towards winning tickets to F1 races, Premier League football matches and other great sporting prizes as part of a campaign to promote “The World of FxPro Sports”.
FxPro, as well as sponsoring Virgin Racing, recently announced shirt sponsorship of Aston Villa and Fulham football clubs, as well as an existing partnership with the WRC. The aim of “The World of FxPro Sports” is to offer consumers the chance, through FxPro, to experience top class sporting events. Timo Glock and team mate Lucas di Grassi, the Virgin F1 drivers, worked with FxPro to test the game, displaying their healthy rivalry, even during its test phase!
Virgin Racing driver Timo Glock says: “Nothing beats the thrill of F1 racing and this is a fun way to compete against people around the world to win a great prize!’’ he says. The launch coincides with high volatility in the markets around the confidence in Euro, which has played havoc with the currency markets. Players will be able to choose certain currency pairs that are depicted as F1 cars and race around the track in record time based on real time currency data received from FxPro. The game can be played at: www.f1.fxpro.com.
Article contributed by Nick
Auto racing has been getting a lot of flack in recent years for not being terribly environmentally friendly. Now it seems that this facet of sport may potentially have a lot to offer the average man on the street in terms of preserving our fast-degrading environment. Green Racing may ultimately help lessen the environmental impact that cars have on our ozone.
In a new type of auto racing known as ‘green racing’, the winner doesn’t only have to be fast – he has to be green as well. But that doesn’t limit the action or excitement. Instead it serves to improve the eco-friendly options available to the man on the street. According to John C. Glenn, a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) specialist, this new type of racing may actually have a huge impact on the technology used in street cars. Automobile technology generally develops at a much faster rate in race cars than it does in street cars. This technology is then carried over to and used in street cars. When the emphasis changes from simply going fast to having more energy efficient engines powered by cleaner-burning fuels, the shift in technological advances also changes. This is one of the most positive effects that Green Racing has on every-day car usage. Glen also noted that people tend to base their choice of car on popular race cars. He said: “They see cars racing on the track, and that’s the kind of car they want to buy.”
It was that sort of thinking that lead Glen and other EPA members to develop the concept of Green Racing. Plans where set in motion as early as 2006 and in 2008 the American Le Mans Series race was the first to feature the Green Challenge. The trend is set to continue this year, with Michelin sponsoring the Michelin Green X Challenge in only a few months time. The prize winners will be determined by three main factors, namely: the amount of petroleum displaced by alternative fuels, the amount of energy used and the amount of greenhouse gas emitted by the vehicle. However, in trying to making racing more eco-friendly event organizers certainly haven’t left much room to slow things down – the average car will still make 200 mph! The Green X Challenge is the only racing series in the world where the cars are actually permitted to be powered by an alternative fuel. And, with current problems faced by the economy combined with the continued green-house gas effect, people are more and more likely to embrace this healthier approach to auto racing.