Possible Austin F1 USGP Date Change Pending

2012 Formula 1

Here’s hot & welcome news excerpts just off the press from autosport.com:

2012 Formula 1 Calendar Set for Major Overhaul

By Jonathan Noble

Although the FIA published its version of the 2012 schedule at its most recent meeting of the FIA World Motor Sport Council last month, it is understood that Ecclestone has undertaken a major reshuffle in the plans for next year.

As well as that, there was some concern in the United States about the possibility of hosting the new race in Austin in June – when very high temperatures could prove troublesome for drivers, teams and spectators.

Sources have revealed that Ecclestone has now finalised his major reorganisation of the calendar, which he has given to the teams for them to highlight any issues they have.

Ecclestone’s plans for the calendar remain provisional, but if teams do not complain about any major logistical dramas then it could be submitted to the FIA’s World Motor Sport Council for ratification later this year.

Here’s the full article!

Racing Ready, & many others, have been hoping the June 17, 2012 pending Austin F1 USGP race date would be moved.  Sometime in October is a more weather friendly fall date.  We shall see!  Stay tuned for more…


*UPDATE* – This came out in today’s (July 29, 2011) Austin American-Statesman newspaper website.

Here’s 3 excerpted quotes:

– Austin’s inaugural Formula One race in 2012 might be getting a new date one that could set up one of the biggest, wildest weeks in Austin’s sporting history. Imagine the city’s first Grand Prix, which could attract as many as 120,000 fans on a Sunday, followed a few days later by a Thanksgiving Day Texas-Texas A&M football game.

– Further, the traditional Texas-Texas A&M game is scheduled in 2012 for Nov. 22: Thanksgiving Day.

– Formula One, Longhorns and Aggies — it could be one memorable week in November 2012.

Here’s the full article link:

WOW!  We’ll all be looking forward to November 18th, 2012!!!


F1 German GP Watch Party Fun at Wild Bubba’s

Today, Wild Bubba’s Wild Game Grill hosted a Formula 1 Watch Party to enjoy the German Grand Prix of Nurburgring.

Formula 1 German Grand Prix Nurburgring graphic

I motored up from San Antonio, TX to Elroy,TX – almost 90 miles away.  It’s just about 3 miles south of the Austin Bergstrom International Airport.  Before I arrived I went off to the side road of Piland Triangle.  This is less than 1 mile from Wild Bubba’s location.  Here are the mid-morning shots I took.

COTA Panorama from Piland Triangle - 2011-07-24

The above is a panorama shot I made, showing the location of the pit straight going up to turn 1.  Click the image 2 different times for the best detail…

Below is a construction view (albeit, from a distance) of one of the tunnels.  This one is under the beginning uphill approach to turn 1.

COTA Tunnel Detail from Piland Triangle - 2011-07-24

This is the view from the “right angle” of Piland Triangle.  This image will change significantly, I’m sure, within the coming year!

COTA Turn 1 & beyond from Piland Triangle - 2011-07-24

Arriving at Wild Bubba’s I saw the new, inviting signage – SO much better now!

Wild Bubba's Wild Game Grill new outdoor sign - 2001-07-24

Quite a good number of people showed up to Wild Bubba’s F1 Race Watching Party.  You can see just a few of the fans’ cars parked out front.

Full parking in front of Wild Bubba's for F1 Watch Party - 2011-07-24

More full parking in front of Wild Bubba's for F1 Watch Party - 2011-07-24

Here’s how Wild Bubba’s front door appeared today – this was surely a limited, special engagement!

Wild Bubba's F1 Watch Party Today! - 2011-07-24

Once inside, the crowd of 30 or more Formula 1 race fans gathered to enjoy the 2011 German Formula 1 race.  Wild Bubba & friends had set up 2 good-sized LCD monitors, along with a nice audio system to best appreciate the racing action broadcast on the Fox Network.

Wild Bubba's F1 Watch Party in action - 2011-07-24

Wild Bubba's F1 Race Watch Party in action - 2011-07-24

Now, if you have not yet visited Wild Bubba’s Wild Game Grill, you are in for a surprise regarding the menu.  The key words here are: Wild Game!  Go ahead & review to pre-order -there is definitely no lack of variety!

Wild Bubba's extensive Wild Game Grill menu - What a WILD variety - YUM!

In addition, Wild Bubba’s has just received its beer license.  To celebrate, you can see the great variety of German & German-style beers that are available.  Thirsty yet?

Wild Bubba's Wild Game Grill menu now includes BEER - Drink up, my friend!

 Of course we all know that beer isn’t bought, but you only rent it.  So, with that in mind, I think this is one of the best directional signs in the place!

Best direction sign inside of Wild Bubba's - aim carefully!

There are other lunch-type eateries popping up in Elroy.  But Wild Bubba’s has been around awhile.  Don’t be fooled, there are NO imitations.  This is the eating place of choice for the COTA (Circuit of The Americas) construction crew, I’m told.

Let’s not forget to wish Lewis Hamilton congratulations on his Formula 1 win today!

Lewis Hamilton wins the 2011 German Grand Prix

Although it’s not a nearby drive, Racing Ready was pleased to attend this special event & to be able to report it to you here.  Hope you can make it out to Wild Bubba’s Wild Game Grill, soon!


Why Watch Formula 1? 10 Good Geeky Reasons

I saw this article “10 Geeky Reasons You Should Be Watching Formula One” from GeekDad on wired.com & thought it appropriate to post here:

Scuderia Ferrari F1 race car steering wheel, circa 2011 - Umm, enee, menee, mynee, moe...

Here is my version, heavily paraphrased & significantly edited for length.  Go to the full article for all the specifics:

Tech geeks play a significant role
in making Formula 1 happen!

Halfway through the 2011 Formula One World Championship season, this weekend is the Grand Prix of Germany.  Did you know that the vast quantity of people watching this sport is only surpassed every 4 years by the World Cup, or the Olympics?

  1. The engineers are as important as the athletes.
  2. Science!
  3. Teams know the importance of a good computer.
  4. They create some really cool technology.
  5. It captures the best of science fiction & fantasy.
  6. The athletes are superhuman.
  7. It filters technology, like NASA.
  8. Beam me up.
  9. Movie geeks are discovering F1’s draw.
  10. You don’t want to be a backmarker.

Jump to the front of the pack now. After a five year absence, Formula One will be returning to the United States next year. The track and its supporting infrastructure, which is now under construction in Austin, Texas, will be an incredibly modern facility, packed with incredible technology and provide a state-of-the-art experience for spectators.

Proposed site for Formula 1 Racing in Austin 2012

The track facility, The Circuit of The Americas, draws from some of the finest corners in the world and has drawn favorable reviews for its Hermann Tilke design.

Racing Ready approves this list!


Austin Formula 1 COTA Track Drive-Thru Tour

This is a pretty decent (for non-insiders) Formula 1 news review from Austin, Texas.  Here is a local television’s take (“KXAN Exclusive First Look!”) of what is going on with Circuit of The Americas.  This was released earlier this evening.  Click the video screenshot below to click through to the news story!

KXAN Exclusive First Look at Austin Formula 1 Circuit of The Americas!

This video helps the so-called Formula 1 & Circuit of The Americas neophyte learn what is really going on.  Racing Ready approves of this message!  🙂


Eye-Opening AutoX Switch to Corvette Torque!

At the last SASCA autocross, I had asked Eric, my Contributing Blogger Extraordinaire, if I could co-drive his 2001 Z06 Corvette, Sunshine.  He agreed!  He had already modified his car’s suspension settings to be relatively neutral in the handling department, & with worn, but still adequately usable Hoosier slicks.

Here’s what he said on FB the week prior:

I’ve ridden with you before and you seem to have decent throttle control, and the Hoosiers I’m running now are getting up there in age, so sure, why not? Register as number 24, and I’ll take Subway for lunch, LOL!

I was seriously concerned about spinning Eric’s ‘Vette.  This is a big serious step up from my autocrosser & daily driver, a 1999 Miata, Karlino. The Hoosier slicks racing compound rubber seemed to have at least 3 times as much contact surface as my street tires, that is, WAY more grip.  Even more, I was very blown away with the car’s power & TORQUE !!!

Eric carving an off camber corner, at the Blossom Athletic Center parking lot

Eric actually said I did pretty good, since I had never driven a Corvette with Hoosier slicks.  Talk about point & stick!  I will have to admit that I was overwhelmed – I didn’t know what to do with all that power & adhesion.  End result, I was 2 seconds slower than Eric’s best time, 48.3 vs. 48.6.

SASCA Event #7, 07-10-2011 - Summary Results

Here’s what Eric posted on the SASCA 2011 Event #7 Facebook page, afterwords:

Fun autox too, and kudos to Dan Scanlon for doing a good job driving my car for the first time ever.

Later, Eric provided me with this blog follow up:

This past week, I participated in SASCA’s July autocross event at Blossom with special guest co-driver, Dan of Racing Ready!  The one thing I remember most about the event was the heat, and I was exhausted before we even had the opportunity to run.

Dan, besides being our host here, was also coursemaster, coming up with a fun to drive, flowing layout that featured both high speed and tight elements.  It seemed like it would be a good matchup between us on middle-aged Hoosiers, and Ray and Robert in Ray’s grey Lotus Elise on fresh R888s.

I’ll let Dan fill in the details, but indeed it was close, with half a second separating Robert in the Elise and me.  It’s painful knowing there was more time in the car, as I kept making stupid mistakes on various different parts of the course, but at least I can blame the heat in addition to myself!  Double driving in these conditions, while fun, took its toll, and my two gallon sprayer was emptied by our third runs.  Many thanks to the Subie driver that allowed us the gracious use of his.

After the event, Dan, a rookie to both Corvettes and Hoosiers, made an interesting comment, about not being quite sure what to do with the car’s performance potential.  Guess I must either take it for granted or be used to it, having started autocrossing on slower than stock old runflats and making gradual changes to the car until now.  My next change, which I hope to have in place before the next SASCA event a week before Nationals, will be tire brand.  We’ll see how that goes.

It was a super hot day, but it was worth it.  For some reason I found myself out of breath after each run.  I’m not sure if it was my adrenalin pumping, or that I forgot to breathe – I guess I was trying so very hard to concentrate.  After 6 runs I will say I was very finished for the day!

Eric's 2001 Z06 Corvette autocross chariot, Sunshine!

Racing Ready is always looking for new racing opportunities to learn…


Proof I’m Too Tall For Formula 1 Racing

Bummer for me & for Ken Block!  That rules out a career choice for me as a Formula 1 racer car driver.  Oh well, hopefully this Formula 1 test drive gets sorted out for Mr. Monster Gymkhana driver, Ken Block.

Toyota’s ex-F1 car, the TF109 - last used in the F1 racing season of 2009

Gymkhana star and X Games rally competitor Ken Block is supposed to test Pirelli’s ex-Toyota Formula One test car at Italy’s Monza circuit in August, but the 43-year-old appears to have a problem: He’s too tall.
Ken Block illustrating the steep banking at the old race track at Monza, Italy.

According to a report by the U.K.’S Autosport, Block–who also competes in the World Rally Championship–on Thursday arrived at Toyota Motorsport’s base in Germany for a seat fitting and other preliminary items, only to find he does not fit in the car. According to Autosport, the six-foot-two-inch Block managed to squeeze into the cockpit, but there was no room left for him to turn the steering wheel.

Toyota and Pirelli are believed to be investigating alternatives that will allow Block to perform his demonstration run as planned.

Read more: http://www.autoweek.com/article/20110630/F1/110639986#ixzz1Qu44q9Hv

Therefore, Racing Ready assumes that 6’2″ (my height, as well) is just outside the normal tallness range for world-class competitive racers.  But then again, people still marvel that I can fit into my 1999 Mazda Miata, Karlino!

Dan's Miata Exit Technique - how graceful ! ! !

I will say that, I think this is actually the first time I’ve been jealous of shorter people…


P. S. – Maybe they can take a page from Mario Andretti’s dual cockpit IndyCar racer… 😉