Upside from Down Under Australia’s
V8 Supercar series has concluded a deal
with Austin’s Circuit of the Americas to
make its North American race debut at
the USGP venue in 2013.
Montoya and his Earnhardt Ganassi crew have been searching for answers much of this season – and in NASCAR, that means the crew chief’s job security is shaky.
ALL HANDS ON DECK
With the Chase looming, those on the periphery of the
playoffs shuffle crew in an attempt to raise their game
With the pressure of performance expectations
butting up against the looming cutoff in the Chase for
the Sprint Cup, several NASCAR teams shook up their
crews in a bid to make a run for the playoffs. Among them was
Juan Pablo Montoya, whose up-and-down season with
Earnhardt Ganassi Racing prompted the breakup of the
Colombian’s association with crew chief Brian Pattie in favor
of Jim Pohlman ahead of the Brickyard 400.
Montoya and his team had enjoyed a solid start to 2011 but
slipped back to 17th at New Hampshire – where JPM ran out of fuel
with more than a lap remaining, despite making his final stop
later than race winner Ryan Newman. Similar situations have hit
Montoya and his team several times in the past year, and despite
Pattie being instrumental to Montoya making the Chase in 2009,
the Colombian won only once during their
115-race tenure, out of a total of 164 he has
entered at NASCAR’s top level.
LOOKING AHEAD TO
INJECTION OF TECH
Will fuel-injection systems
be a key differentiator?
NASCAR Sprint Cup teams believe the
new fuel-injection systems scheduled to
come online next year will offer a
chance to gain a competitive edge.
Electronic fuel injection (EFI) will
replace caburetors in Sprint Cup cars
for the first time in 2012, and the
McLaren-developed system was given
its first track test at Kentucky in July.
Two Chevrolet teams and one each
from Dodge, Ford and Toyota took part
in the test, and Andrew Randolph, who
is working on Earnhardt Childress
Racing Engines’ fuel-injection project,
said he was excited by what he saw.
“The system has considerable room
for invention, for science,” he told the
Associated Press. “Certainly, there is
room for people to do it better than
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. set the fastest
time among the EFI cars in Roush
Fenway’s Ford (BELOW) and was
enthusiastic. “The motor is really
smooth,” he said. “It almost feels a
little flatter compared with the other
Cup motor. So far, so good.”
Lesley Ann Miller/LAT
Lesley Ann Miller/LAT
No smooth transition into Sprint Cup for Kentucky