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Racing Notebook

Racing Notebook – Wednesday, March 25: Dodge Charger Daytona Lead Engineer Passes Away; A.J. Foyt Answers fan questions and more.

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PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The lead engineer responsible for the Dodge Charger Daytona passes away plus IndyCar legend A.J. Foyt answers fan questions and Sprint Cars go iRacing as Fox Sports signs on to televise eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series.

Coronavirus Claims Life Of Dodge Charger Daytona Engineer:

  • The coronavirus has claimed the life of the engineer of the legendary Dodge Charger Daytona Larry Rathgeb.  Rathgeb was Chrysler’s Lead Engineer for Racing Development when he and his engineering team took their test mule to Talladega Super Speedway for transmission testing (wink – wink) and saw Buddy Baker break the 200 MPH mark, becoming the first person in the world to lap a closed-circuit track at that speed.  Rathgeb passed away at the age of 90.

IndyCar Legend A.J. Foyt Answers Fans Questions in #Ask A.J.:

  • Six-time IndyCar Champion and Four-time Indianapolis 500 winner A.J. Foyt is practicing social distancing from his ranch in Texas but took some time out from his bulldozer this week to answer questions race fans submitted through through Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.  The response was so terrific the team will be posting the answers on the teams website, www.foytracing.com, over the next few weeks.
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Fox Sports To Air Complete eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series:

  • FOX Sports is committing to coverage of the remainder of the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series season, beginning Sunday, March 29, at 1:00 PM ET live from virtual Texas Motor Speedway.  Last Sunday’s inaugural event, won by three-time Daytona 500 winner Denny Hamlin, drew 903,000 viewers on FS1, according to Nielsen Media Research.  FOX SPORTS iRACING was the most-watched telecast on FS1 since the pandemic-induced sports shutdown began on March 12 and Sunday’s most-watched sports telecast on cable television, as well as ranks as the highest-rated esports TV program in history.

The World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Cars Go iRacing tonight:

  • The World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Cars go virtual racing tonight.  50-drivers have signed up to participate in the invitation only event, including many of the top drivers in the sport and a few surprises.

Racing Notebook

Racing Notebook: Knaus Promoted At Hendrick; NASCAR Revises Schedule; Jarett Andretti To Run Tribute Scheme And More

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Hendrick Motorsports

PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Hendrick Motorsports promotes Jeff Andrews and Chad Knaus; NASCAR revises the schedule for the Kansas weekend October plus Jarett Andretti to run a tribute paint scheme at Indianapolis and ABeam Consulting to be primary sponsor for Takuma Sato at Harvest GP.

Hendrick Motorsports Elevates Andrews And Knaus:

  • Hendrick Motorsports is elevating Jeff Andrews and Chad Knaus into leadership roles at the 12-NASCAR Cup Series Championship organization.  Andrews becomes Executive Vice President and General Manager effective immediately.  Andrews has been Hendrick’s Vice President of Competition since 2017.  Knaus becomes the Vice President of Competition after serving as Crew Chief since 2006, winning seven Cup Championships and 82-races with Jimmie Johnson.  Knaus moves into his new role after the 2020 season.

NASCAR Revises Kansas Weekend Schedule:

  • NASCAR is revising the weekend schedule at Kansas Speedway due to programming changes.  The ARCA Menards Series will take place Friday, October 16 at 8:30 p.m. ET (originally at 10 p.m. ET). The NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series will now take place on Saturday, October 17 at 4 p.m. (originally Friday, October 16 at 7 p.m. ET).  The NASCAR Xfinity Series will move to 7 p.m. ET (originally 3 p.m. ET).
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Jarett Andretti To Pay Tribute To Father John:

  • Jarett Andretti will run a tribute scheme to his late father John this weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.  The No. 36 Andretti GT4 McLaren will run a Window World paint scheme reminiscent of the paint scheme that John Andretti ran in his final Indianapolis 500.

ABeam Consulting To Be Primary Sponsor For Sato At Harvest GP:

  • ABeam Consulting will be the primary sponsor of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Takuma Sato at Race 1 of the Harvest Grand Prix on the road course at The Indianapolis Motor Speedway on October 2.  ABeam has been an associate sponsor of Sato’s No. 30 Honda in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES since 2017.

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Racing Notebook

Racing Notebook: Hinchcliffe Replaces Veach; Askew In Concussion Protocol, Helio To Fill-in and more!

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James Black

PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – A jam packed edition of The Pittsburgh Racing Now Notebook has details on Zach Veach’s replacement at Andretti Autosport plus Arrow McLaren SP’s Oliver Askew sidelined by a concussion so Helio Castroneves is going to fill-in; Hendrick Motorsports penalized for violating wind tunnel time; Limited amount of fans at Charlotte Roval and the World of Outlaws in Ohio before Lernerville stop.

Hinchcliffe To Replace Veach At Andretti:

  • James Hinchcliffe will finish out the 2020 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season in the No. 26 Gainbridge Honda for Andretti Autosport.  Hinchcliffe replaces Zach Veach, who parted ways with the organization earlier this week.  Hinchcliffe drove full-time for Andretti from 2012-2014 and in three races this year.  The NTT INDYCAR SERIES continues next Friday and Saturday with the Harvest Grand Prix doubleheader on the road course at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Askew Out With Concussion; Helio To Fill-in:

  • Arrow McLaren SP’s Oliver Askew will not be behind the wheel of the No. 7 Chevrolet at next weekend’s NTT INDYCAR SERIES Harvest Grand Prix doubleheader.  Askew told the Associated Press he hasn’t felt right since a wreck at the Indianapolis 500.  Askew has since been diagnosed with a concussion and is undergoing treatment at The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Sports Medicine Concussion Program.  Helio Castroneves will replace Askew at the Harvest GP.
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Hendrick Motorsports Penalized For Rules Violation:

  • NASCAR is fining Hendrick Motorsports $100,000 and docking the organization 10-hours of wind tunnel time in 2021 for going over their allotted time this year.  The team self-reported the violation when they realized they went over the 70-hours teams are permitted to use in 2020.  The teams will get 80-hours in 2021, leaving Hendrick with only 70.

Limited Amount Of Fans At Charlotte:

  • Charlotte Motor Speedway will be permitted to host a limited amount of fans at their NASCAR weekend October 10-11.  The State of North Carolina will allow outdoor sports venues that have a capacity of more than 10,000 to host events with fans up to seven percent of their capacity.  CMS is expected to be able to around 7,000-fans.  Season ticket holders are being contacted about the Cup series race but tickets are available for the Xfinity and IMSA races on Saturday.

World of Outlaws At Wayne County Tonight:

  • The World of Outlaws NOS Energy Sprint Car Series is at Wayne County Speedway outside of Canton, Ohio tonight, one night before the Outlaws invade Lernerville Speedway for the ‘Commonwealth Clash’.  Brad Sweet, last year’s winner of the Clash, holds a 20-point lead over Logan Schuchart in the Championship standings heading into this weekend.
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Racing Notebook

Racing Notebook: Gravel Wins At Eldora; Mid-Ohio Gearing Up For IMSA; Briscoe On Xfinity Pole and more

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Campbell Photography

PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The latest edition of The Pittsburgh Racing Now Notebook recaps David Gravel’s win at Eldora, IMSA’s trip to Mid-Ohio this weekend, the NASCAR Xfinity Series starting lineup at Las Vegas, the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series lineup and pilot error cited in Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s 2019 plane crash.

Gravel Wins Governors Reign At Eldora:

  • David Gravel held off Kyle Larson to win The Ollies Bargain Outlet All Star Circuit of Champions Governors Reign at Eldora Speedway Wednesday night.  Gravel started on the pole position and led all 35-laps but not without a fight from Larson.  Larson started 10th and worked his way into the top 5 before the midway point and into second place after a restart following a lap 20 caution.  Gravel took off on that restart but Larson kept chiseling away at Gravel’s lead, trying a slide job on the last lap only to lose the drag race to the checkered flag.  Gravel took home $52,000 for the win.

Mid-Ohio Preparing For IMSA Weekend:

  • The Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course is gearing up for a weekend of sports car racing as the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) brings four series to the 2.258-mile, 13-turn natural terrain road course.  The Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio showcases the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship is Sunday’s headliner.  The IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge races on both Saturday and Sunday.  The IMSA Prototype Challenge and Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA will hold a triple header while the Mazda MX-5 Cup will hold a doubleheader.  A limited amount of fans will be permitted to attend but must purchase tickets online at www.midohio.com because tickets will not be sold at the gate.
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Chase Briscoe Awarded Xfinity Series Las Vegas Pole:

  • Stewart Haas Racing’s Chase Briscoe has been awarded the pole position for Saturday night’s NASCAR Xfinity Series Alsco 300 Playoff opener at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.  Team Penske’s Austin Cindric will start second.  JR Motorsports Justin Allgaier will lineup third with Kaulig Motorsports Ross Chastain starting fourth.  The lineup was set by NASCAR’s ‘performance matrix’.  Briscoe and Cindric both open the playoffs with 2050 points but Briscoe is first due to a series-high 7-wins.  The green flag flies Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. ET. Xfinity Las Vegas Starting Lineup

Brett Moffitt Awarded Las Vegas Truck Series Pole:

  • GMS Racing’s Brett Moffitt has been awarded the pole position for Friday night’s NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series World of Westgate 200 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.  The race is the second of the NASCAR Playoffs for the Truck Series.  Moffitt finished second in last weekend’s playoff opener at Bristol Motor Speedway.  Moffitt’s GMS Racing teammate Sam Mayer, who is running a part-time schedule won that race.  The green flag for the Westgate 200 drops at 9:00 p.m. ET. NASCAR Trucks Las Vegas Lineup

Pilot Error Cited In Dale Earnhardt Jr Plane Accident:

  • The National Transportation Safety Board is blaming the pilots for the crash August 2019 crash involving Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his family.  Investigators said the probable cause of the incident was decisions by the pilots, including approaching the runway too fast and a failed attempt to abort the landing.  The report says the plane bounced four times and “the airplane touched down hard and the right main landing gear then collapsed under the wing.”
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