La Mirada, CA – Makita has released a new cordless fastening solution for automotive, installation and fabrication trades with the 18V LXT® Lithium-Ion Brushless 3-Speed ½” Impact Wrench. The new XWT02M combines the extended run time of brushless motor technology with the new 18V LXT® Lithium-Ion 4.0 Ah battery, as well as 3 speed settings for unmatched performance for fastening applications with half-inch sockets.

18V LXT Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 3-Speed 1/2″ Impact Wrench Kit (XWT02M).

The new XWT02M is part of Makita’s expanding 18V Lithium-Ion series, which offers 80+ tools and is the world’s largest cordless tool line-up powered by an 18V Lithium-Ion slide-style battery. Makita 18V Lithium-Ion batteries have the fastest charge times in their categories, so they spend more time working and less time sitting on the charger.  3 Speed Settings for Precision Fastening “The new XWT02M is the latest in Makita’s long line of expertise, innovation and leadership in cordless fastening tools,” said Mario Lopez, Makita Product Manager, Cordless Tools. “Three speeds with a reversible setting mean more control for fastening applications. And with the efficient brushless motor and the fast-charging Makita 18 volt LXT® Lithium-Ion 4.0 amp-hour battery, contractors will benefit from longer run time and increased productivity.”

Makita BL™ Brushless Motor Technology The XWT02M is powered by Makita’s efficient BL™ Brushless motor, which is electronically controlled to optimize battery energy use for up to 50% longer run time per charge than similar non-brushless tools. Electronic controls efficiently use battery energy to match torque and RPM to the changing demands of the application for increased power and speed when needed. And since there are no carbon brushes, the BL™ Brushless motor runs cooler and more efficiently for longer life.

The XWT02M is 5-3/4” in length, weighs only 3.8 lbs., and has an ergonomic design with superior balance.

Precision Features for Fastening The efficient BL™ Brushless Motor with 3-speed power selection switch gives contractors more control and convenience for a wide range of fastening tasks:

  • Low setting: 0-1,600 RPM, 0-1,800 IPM, and 59 ft.lbs. of Max Torque
  • Medium setting: 0-2,100 RPM, 0-2,600 IPM, and 129 ft.lbs. of Max Torque
  • High setting: 0-2,800 RPM, 0-3,500 IPM and 210 ft.lbs. of Max Torque

Star Protection Computer Controls™ For improved tool performance and extended battery life, the XWT02M features Star Protection Computer Controls™. Star Protection is communication technology that allows the Star Protection-equipped tool and battery to exchange data in real time and monitor conditions during use to protect against overloading, overdischarging and overheating. For increased versatility, the tool can also be powered by Makita 18V LXT® and Compact Lithium-Ion batteries with the star symbol on the battery indicating Star Protection inside.


The BL™ Brushless Motor delivers 210 ft.lbs. of Max Torque.

XPT for Added Durability in Harsh Conditions For added durability, the XWT02M features Makita Extreme Protection Technology (XPT). XPT is a protective seal inside the tool engineered for improved water resistance by channeling water and dust from the tool’s key internal components. The XPT-equipped XWT02M is engineered for improved operation in harsh jobsite conditions. Ergonomic Design, Superior Balance An added benefit of Makita Brushless Motor Technology is increased motor efficiency in a more compact size. The XWT02M is 5-3/4″ in length and weighs only 3.8 lbs. with an ergonomic design and superior balance. Additional features include a 3-stage L.E.D. gauge that indicates battery charge level, and the built-in L.E.D. light with independent on/off switch illuminates the work area for increased visibility. Similar to all Makita impact drivers and impact wrenches, the anvil impact mechanism in the XWT02M is engineered using the best raw materials with the highest quality steel and unique heat hardening process for maximum fastening and driving power.


The XWT02M Kit includes the new Makita 18V LXT® Lithium-Ion 4.0Ah Battery, which reaches a full charge in only 40 minutes.




Capacity (chuck)



No Load RPM



Impacts/Min (IPM)



Maximum Torque

210 ft.lbs./280 N•m

210 ft.lbs./280 N•m

Battery (Ah)






Net Weight (lbs. with battery)


3.8 (with battery, sold separately)


Tool; 2 ea. LXT® Lithium-Ion 4.0Ah Batteries; Rapid Optimum Charger; Contractor Tool Bag

Tool only

Suggested Retail




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Posted in Automotive Tools, Motor'n News

Dixon Wins at Sonoma; Power up by 51 to Finale

SONOMA, Calif. (Sunday, Aug. 24, 2014) – Scott Dixon overtook race leader Mike Conway on Lap 83 of 85 en route to a dramatic victory Sunday in the GoPro Grand Prix at Sonoma Raceway. The win was the 35th of Dixon’s Indy car career, putting him in a tie for fifth place on the all-time Indy car victory list with three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Bobby Unser.


Dixon, who started third in the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car, led Ryan Hunter-Reay across the finish line by 1.1359 seconds. Simon Pagenaud finished third after overtaking Conway, whose No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Ed Carpenter Racing car ran out of fuel and coasted across the finish line for a 14th-place finish.


Pagenaud, who started 15th in the No. 77 Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Motorsports car, joins Team Penske teammates Will Power and Helio Castroneves as drivers eligible for the Verizon IndyCar Series championship. Ryan Hunter-Reay and Dixon remain championship eligible, but will be eliminated if Power participates in Friday practice at Auto Club Speedway, which would assure the Team Penske driver half points for the weekend.

Power takes a lead of 51 points over Castroneves and 81 points over Pagenaud to the two-mile Auto Club Speedway oval for the season-closing MAVTV 500 on Aug. 30. A total of 104 points are available in the final round of the Triple Crown series.

Power, who started on the pole and led a field-high 33 laps in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske car, was scored 10th after rebounding from a spin on Lap 40 that cost him eight positions to 20th.

“It took me by surprise when I spun. That’s just racing,” Power said. “I would have liked to have had a better finish, but the Verizon Chevy team will look to Fontana working towards the championship.”

Castroneves, whose No. 3 Hitachi Team Penske car was involved in contact on Laps 1 and 36, finished 18th. He entered the race 40 points behind Power.

“This is just big for our team,” said Dixon. “It was tough because there were so many fuel strategies going on and they were just slightly off. I didn’t know who could make it and who couldn’t.”

Takuma Sato, who started 20th in the No. 14 ABC Supply A.J. Foyt Racing car, finished a season-high fourth and Juan Pablo Montoya was fifth in the No. 2 Verizon Team Penske entry.

Twenty cars finished on the lead lap, tying a season high set in the Indianapolis 500. The 10 lead changes were the most for a Verizon IndyCar Series race at Sonoma Raceway.

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Posted in Motor'n News, MotorSports Info

Risi take it to the edge for second consecutiv​e win at VIR

The honors for overall victory in today’s Oak Tree Grand Prix went right down to the wire at Virginia International Raceway, and it was Giancarlo Fisichella who took the checkered flag in the No.62 Ferrari 458 Italia to claim Risi Competizione’s second consecutive victory in the TUDOR United Sportscar Championship and third podium in three races.

In the team’s most successful weekend of the season to date, Risi and Ferrari not only claimed overall victory, but also did it having started from pole position.  In addition, Giancarlo Fisichella set the fastest lap of the race and a new lap record (lap 57 with a time of 1:43.745), plus the Houston-based squad was awarded the Michelin Green Challenge prize to top it off.

“Giancarlo Fisichella truly showed his class today,” said a delighted Giuseppe Risi. “I couldn’t be happier for the entire team, especially after the opening laps didn’t go to plan.  The drivers didn’t lose their heads under pressure, and the crew were once again superb in the pits.  I can’t think of a better way to celebrate Ferrari North America’s 60th anniversary of racing.”

In a thrilling conclusion to the race, the Italian superstar and two-time 24 Hours of Le Mans GTE winner made the pass for the lead with just two corners remaining, finishing 0.492s ahead of the No.17 Falken Porsche of Wolf Henzler.

With just seven minutes of the 2h45 race to go, the green flag was shown after the last of three full course caution periods, and – with the Porsche tight on fuel – Fisichella was all over its rear fender, pressuring Henzler at every opportunity.  He made several attempts to pass, finally making a superbly decisive and clean move at Turn 11 to clinch the Risi Competizione team’s second consecutive victory at VIR (last year in the hands of Beretta/Malucelli).

The GTLM/GTD only race was action-packed from start to finish and was thrilling for competitors and spectators alike.  The Risi Ferrari started from pole position, Pierre Kaffer having clinched his first pole in the series, and it was the German’s turn to take the start.  Unfortunately the first lap didn’t go to plan and, after being nudged wide as he exited VIR’s ‘esses’ and onto the grass, Kaffer was forced to make an unscheduled stop in the pits to clean grass from the radiator to prevent overheating.  That put the Ferrari at the rear of the GTLM pack but determined and consistent lapping soon put the #62 back into the mix.  The strategic timing of subsequent stops for fuel and tires – combined with more rapid work in the pits by the crew – allowed Risi to be in a position to challenge for victory, even after having to make a fourth stop for a splash of fuel 12 laps before the checkered flag.

An elated Giancarlo Fisichella commented:  “It’s my first time here at VIR and I have to say it’s my favorite track in America – I love driving on this track!  Straight away I had a fantastic feeling with the circuit and I feel so comfortable driving here.  I think this kind of track suits our car very well for sure, with Risi winning here last year as well.  The car was good and consistent from the beginning to the end and we had good speed on the straight.  It was a bit tricky in the corners with our level of downforce but I think that was key to me being able to pass the Porsche on the last lap.  The end of the race was so exciting for us and I think enjoyable for everyone around the circuit and on TV! I braked on the limit and went so close to the Porsche, and it was a great fight between us.”

A happy and relieved Pierre Kaffer added:  “I want to say this victory is very important for the whole team; it’s a team effort, not only for us drivers. The crew did a fantastic job in the pits, they gave us a great car and put us in place for the pole position. My start was pretty good, the car handling was good but unfortunately at the start Dominik [Farnbacher, #91 SRT Viper] tried to dive in. Unfortunately, it was impossible to avoid it, I picked up some marbles and went off to the grass, After that my stint was pretty good and I could close the gap again, and Giancarlo and the guys did a great job.  We all saw what happened on the last lap, and we’re really happy to be here.”

The next round of the TUDOR United Sportscar Championship will be Lone Star Le Mans at Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas on Saturday September 20.  The 2h 45 minute race will begin at 11:35 am.

Fans of Risi Competizione can purchase officially branded merchandise and apparel at the site that features team partner Cinsay’s own in-house made to order, OnDemand items from t-shirts, jackets and smartphone covers to one-of-a-kind and limited number collectibles available only through the network.


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Posted in Motor'n News, MotorSports Info

BMW Team RLL Finishes 3rd and 4th at Virginia International Raceway; Edwards/Müller Race to 2nd Consecutive Podium Finish

BMW Team RLL put in a strong performance in today’s TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Oak Tree Grand Prix at Virginia International Raceway, finishing 3rd and 4th in the headlining GTLM class.

John Edwards and Dirk Müller raced to a second-consecutive podium with a third place finish in the No. 56 BMW Z4. They completed 82 laps of the 3.27-mile, 17-turn VIR circuit in the 2.75-hour contest, finishing only .764 seconds behind the winning Ferrari. The result moves Edwards and Müller into a tie for third place in GTLM driver standings with their BMW Team RLL teammates. Müller took the green flag from the fourth starting position and ran as high as third, before pitting to hand off to Edwards on Lap 29. Edwards moved up as high as second, ultimately finishing third to secure the duo’s third podium finish of the season.

The No. 55 BMW Z4 of Bill Auberlen and Andy Priaulx finished fourth. The car was started by Priaulx from the second qualifying position. He held that spot for the opening hour before pitting to hand off to Auberlen on lap 28. Auberlen battled a vibration from the left rear of the car during the closing stages of the race, but was able to hold onto a fourth place finish.

Separately, in the GTD class, the Turner Motorsport BMW Z4 GTD, driven by Dane Cameron and Markus Palttala, raced to the team’s fourth victory of the season (Laguna Seca, Watkins Glen, Road America, and VIR).

“We put in an excellent effort,” said Gordon McDonnell, BMWNA Motorsport Manager. “It is unfortunate we missed out on the top step of the podium, but I think we can be proud of third and fourth and good championship points.”

“We were playing the odds there with the yellows,” said Jay O’Connell, RLL VP Technology. “If the race hadn’t gone yellow at the end, the No. 17 Porsche was going to have to pit for fuel and we would have earned a double-podium. But as the yellow came out, ironically for another Porsche, the No. 17 was able to extend, and we ended up P3 and P4. I think both BMW cars did well to earn some good points by avoiding mistakes, and we are happy with that.”

John Edwards, driver No. 56 Z4 GTLM – (3rd) – “That was a great points day and we have moved up to tie third in the championship. Unfortunately, the Falken Porsche was able to make it at the end on fuel thanks to that last yellow. We were counting on them running out and it staying green.”

Dirk Müller, driver No. 56 Z4 GTLM – (3rd) – “I am thrilled with the result – many thanks to the team. We were focused from qualifying onwards so we had no qualifying set-up, just the race one. As could be seen today my car was a rocket and I was able to save fuel. It paid off as I was able to stay out longer and gain positions. Well done to John. Now we are tied for third in driver points. We could have gambled on the strategy like some others, but we didn’t do that as normally it would stay green, but then there was a yellow. It is a podium, our second consecutive one, and I am happy about that. There are still two races to go and we are fighting hard.”

Bill Auberlen, driver No. 55 Z4 GTLM – (4th) – “We qualified on the front row and have been fairly quick all weekend. We are as good as the competition in the corners, but they just drive away on the straights. It was a frustrating day at the races.”

Andy Priaulx, driver No. 55 Z4 GTLM – (4th) – “The team did really well with the strategy, but it is difficult to know when the next yellow is going to come. You have to be able to look into the future. I was really delighted with my stint. I came in from P2 and was in touch with the leaders. We were a little bit unlucky with a couple of calls. Overall, we did the maximum and I think it is a great result for BMW.”

Round Ten of the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, the Lone Star Le Mans, will take place at the Circuit of the Americas, in Austin, TX, on Saturday, September 20th. Follow BMW Team RLL on Twitter at @BMWUSARacing for “from-the-pit-box” updates all weekend. More information on the program can be found at and

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Posted in Motor'n News, MotorSports Info

Yokohama’s Truck/SUV Tire Technology Highlighte​d in new GEOLANDAR H/T G056

FULLERTON, CA (Aug. 25, 2014) – The next generation tire from one of Yokohama Tire Corporation’s (YTC) most  prominent lines, the GEOLANDAR H/T G056, will go on sale September 1.

Yokohama - Geolandar H/T-S G051 - 235/75R16 109S

The GEOLANDAR H/T G056™ is the latest product to sport the tire maker’s advanced technology featuring an innovative compound that provides longer treadlife and all-season traction. It is available in 38 sizes and in 15-20 inch in both P-metric and LT-metric offerings, fitting a variety of today’s most popular light trucks and SUVs.

“Thanks to its completely new design, which includes Yokohama’s own orange oil compound technology, the GEOLANDAR H/T G056 is made to stay on the road thousands of miles longer and provide exceptional all-weather handling,” said Andrew Briggs, Yokohama director, marketing and product planning. “It outlasts conventional highway terrain tires without sacrificing its all-season capabilities.”

The GEOLANDAR H/T G056 features a 70,000-mile limited treadwear warranty on P-metric sizes and 50,000 miles on LT-metric sizes.

Other highlights of the GEOLANDAR H/T G056 include:

– Triple 3D sipes that help stabilize tread blocks to minimize uneven wear and provide biting edges for enhanced traction throughout the life of the tire.

– Multi-angle grooves and zigzag circumferential grooves that work in tandem to provide improved handling in wet and wintry conditions.

– An optimized contact patch that contributes to better mileage by equalizing pressure distribution where the tread contacts the road for long, even wear.

–Adaptive shoulder blocks form a continuous outer rib that reduces noise throughout the life of the tire.

Yokohama Tire Corporation is the North American manufacturing and marketing arm of Tokyo, Japan-based The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd., a global manufacturing and sales company of premium tires since 1917. Servicing an extensive sales network throughout the U.S., Yokohama Tire Corporation is a leader in technology and innovation. The company’s complete product line includes tires for high-performance, light truck, passenger car, commercial truck and bus, and off-the-road mining and construction applications. For more information on Yokohama’s broad product line, visit

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Posted in Cool Parts, Motor'n News

Pro Mod Records Destroyed at PSCA Street Car Super Nats at Gateway

MADISON, Ill. – At the 2012 Pacific Street Car Association Street Car Super Nationals in Las Vegas, “El General” Jose Gonzalez set the door slammer world ET record with a pass of 5.73 seconds. Thursday night at Gateway Motorsports Park on the opening night of the PSCA’s Anarchy at the Arch, St. Louis’ inaugural SCSN, Frankie “The Madman” Taylor dropped a pass of 5.550 seconds in the Pro Line Outlaw Pro Mod class.

That record didn’t last 24 hours.

Friday at GMP, despite a heat index in the triple digits and humidity you could cut with a butter knife, the ET record fell two more times. Turky Al Zafiri of Q80 racing stepped up to the plate and knocked it out of the park with a 5.531 second pass, but that lasted no time at all with Taylor reclaiming his title with an unbelievable 5.529 second run. Al Zafiri didn’t go down without a fight, though. A fifth qualifying round was announced and while Taylor decided to sit it out, Al Zafiri fired off a run of 5.538 at a blistering 270.27 mph, easily smashing the existing speed record.

“It’s unbelievable,” said PSCA President Mel Roth. “To see .2 seconds shaved off the national ET record in under two years and to see it done at PSCA events is just incredible. And 270 miles per hour? Wow. Gateway has given us an amazing racing surface. To see these ETs and speeds in this kind of weather? That’s a great track.”

Taylor goes into Saturday’s eliminations as the Outlaw Pro Mod top qualifier. No. 1 qualifiers in the other classes are: Dennis Pearson (Ross Racing Triple Index), Dennis Sato (Goodyear Open Comp), John Hackney (Calvert Racing Street Muscle), Alex Rogeo (Brodix Bracket 1), Justin Martin (MagnaFuel XDR/TT5), Todd Moyer (Mickey Thompson Wild Street), Krusty Ramsey (Steve Schmidt Outlaw 8.5), Mike Kimmis (MagnaFuel Outlaw 10.5), and Kevin Fiscus (Hughes Performance Pro Mod). Troy Coughlin, the two-time defending Las Vegas SCSN champ and 2012 NHRA Pro Mod title holder qualified third in Pro Mod.

Spectator gates open at Noon Saturday with eliminations kicking off at 1 p.m. local time. Fans wanting to save some money just have to give the ticket seller the code “MelPSCA” for $20 tickets and beer is on sale for only $2.

For more information on the St. Louis Street Car Super Nationals: Anarchy at the Arch next weekend, click HERE and to join the event page on Facebook, click HERE.

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Pivotal Penultimate Sonoma Doubleheader On Tap for Pirelli World Challenge GT, GT-A, GTS


SONOMA, CALIF. – The Pirelli World Challenge heads towards the conclusion of its 25th Anniversary season with the penultimate round of 2014, the Cadillac Grand Prix of Sonoma. The GT, GT-A and GTS divisions will race Rounds 13 and 14 of the year, a pair of 50-minute sprints, at Sonoma Raceway, a 1.99-mile permanent road course.
More than 40 entries are set to compete at Sonoma, the series’ second trip to California this year; the series raced Round 2 in Long Beach in April. Several drivers have home turf or wins to defend in the Golden State, as championship battles intensify in all classes.
Pirelli World Challenge GT: O’Connell Leads Skeen With Just Four Races Left
The GT title battle is intense between points leader and two-time defending champion, Johnny O’Connell, of Flowery Branch, Ga., in the No. 3 Cadillac Racing Cadillac CTS-V.R and Mike Skeen, of Charlotte, N.C., in the No. 2 Hawk Performance Audi R8 Ultra.
O’Connell leads Skeen by 82 points (1228 to 1146) heading into the two-race Sonoma weekend. Both drivers seek to bounce back after challenging Sonoma races in 2013; O’Connell was taken out on the first lap and Skeen was issued a post-race penalty that dropped him, like O’Connell, outside the top 10 in the race.
If either of these two falters there are three drivers within striking distance who could put themselves into title contention this weekend. Among them is O’Connell’s teammate Andy Pilgrim, of Boca Raton, Fla., in the sister No. 8 Cadillac Racing Cadillac CTS-V.R, and the defending Sonoma race winner.
Pilgrim sits fifth, just nine points behind Anthony Lazzaro, of Atlanta, Ga., in the No. 61 R. Ferri Motorsports Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 and Andrew Palmer, of Chicago, in the No. 21 GMG Racing Audi R8 Ultra. Both Lazzaro and Palmer have a win apiece this year as they split the two-race Barber weekend on another permanent road course.
The driver entering the weekend with the most momentum is Ryan Dalziel, of Winter Park, Fla., who swept the Mid-Ohio weekend in the No. 31 EFFORT Racing Porsche GT3 R. Dalziel, who is not in the championship picture, could play spoiler this weekend.
K-PAX Racing has shown increased speed of late, but has not had the results to match. Both Alex Figge, of Denver, Col., in the No. 9 K-PAX Racing McLaren 12C GT3 and Robert Thorne, of Littleton, Col., in the sister No. 6 K-PAX Racing McLaren 12C GT3 look for solid results and further top-10 finishes.
RealTime Racing brings its new Acura to Honda Performance Development’s home state for the first time, with seven-time Pirelli World Challenge champion Peter Cunningham, of Milwaukee, Wis., driving the No. 42 Acura/RealTime Racing Acura TLX-GT. Cunningham and the team enjoyed a successful debut weekend at Mid-Ohio and look to break into the top-10 in Sonoma, several hours north of HPD’s U.S. base in Torrance.
California natives James Sofronas, of Villa Park, Calif., in the No. 14 Spyder/The Thermal Club Audi R8 Ultra and Mike Hedlund, of Woodside, Calif. in the No. 77 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 seek big results in their home state. Sofronas looks to continue his run of consistent finishes, having scored a top-10 result in each of the first 12 races this season. Hedlund returns for the first time since Long Beach in April; the Scuderia Corsa team makes its first Pirelli World Challenge start.
TRG-AMR also has its home race this weekend in Sonoma, as part of a banner weekend for Kevin Buckler’s TRG-AMR operation – both it and Buckler’s Adobe Road Winery are based in nearby Petaluma. Rising young sports car star Christina Nielsen, of Horsholm, Denmark, will make her series debut in the No. 00 Passtime USA Aston Martin GT3.
Dyson Racing Team Bentley steps up to a two-car effort for the first time. Butch Leitzinger, of State College, Pa., in the No. 08 Bentley/Breitling/Mobil 1 Bentley Continental GT3 continues as he has since Road America. Longtime Dyson Racing driver Guy Smith, of Beverley, U.K., will drive alongside in the sister No. 88 Bentley/Breitling/Mobil 1 Bentley Continental GT3.
Alex Lloyd, of Westfield, Ind. in the No. 12 Indianapolis Attorneys Chevrolet Corvette bolsters the season-high 15-car GT class field. Lloyd, a Yahoo Autos writer, will race not far from Yahoo’s corporate headquarters.
Pirelli World Challenge GT-A: Mills Seizes Momentum at Mid-Ohio
Michael Mills, of Angleton, Texas, took over the GT-A points lead with a double win at Mid-Ohio in the No. 41 EFFORT Racing Porsche GT3 R. Mills, who also won Round 10 in Toronto, seeks to extend his three-race win streak this weekend.
Seeking to catch him in Sonoma are Henrik Hedman, of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., in the No. 10 DragonSpeed Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 and Dan Knox, of Pilot Point, Texas, in the No. 80 ACS Manufacturing, Inc./Performance SpeedTech Dodge Viper SRT GT3-R. Hedman and Knox are 27 and 34 points back respectively of Mills entering the two-race weekend.
Santa Ana, Calif.-based GMG Racing again has two cars entered in GT-A with full-season competitor Bill Ziegler, of Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., in the No. 95 Swisher Racing/GMG Audi R8 Ultra and local driver Brent Holden, of Newport Coast, Calif., in the No. 44 GMG Racing Audi R8 Ultra. Jeff Courtney, of Milwaukee, Wis., in the No. 99 Kenda/ Audi R8 Ultra makes it three GT-A Audis in the field.
Lastly the pair of Reiter Engineering entries should be interesting to watch. Marcelo Hahn, of Sao Paulo, Brazil, in the No. 0 Reiter Engineering Lamborghini Gallardo FL2 has had four class wins this season while Albert von Thurn und Taxis, of Regensburg, Germany, continues for a third consecutive weekend in the No. 24 Reiter Engineering Lamborghini Gallardo FL2.
Pirelli World Challenge GTS: Kia Leads, Others Challenge Heading to Sonoma
Kia Racing/Kinetic Motorsports has an important weekend; it’s back in the home state where the manufacturer’s corporate headquarters are based (Orange County, in Irvine). Nic Jonsson, of Buford, Ga., in the No. 36 Kia Optima and teammate Mark Wilkins, of Toronto, in the No. 38 Kia Optima finished 1-3 in Long Beach earlier this year. Wilkins and Jonsson enter the weekend 1-2 in GTS points, and seek to defend their lead in both the driver and manufacturer championships in Northern California.
Defending class champion Lawson Aschenbach, of Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., in the No. 1 Blackdog Speed Shop Chevrolet Camaro has an outside title chance thanks to securing maximum points in the Mid-Ohio weekend, with two victories from pole. Although he’s 164 points behind Wilkins, further wins and trouble for the Kias could bring him back into title contention.
Dean Martin, of Westland, Mich., in the No. 50 Picture Cars East/Rehagen Racing Ford Mustang Boss 302S, also could enter the title picture with a big weekend in Sonoma. The three-time 2014 winner sits fourth in points and like Aschenbach, could capitalize if the Kias falter.
A pair of Jacks completes the top six in GTS points. Jack Baldwin, of Marietta, Ga., in the No. 73 RESET-MD Porsche Cayman S sits fifth and looks for his first podium finish since Round 5 in Detroit; in sixth, Jack Roush Jr., of Livonia, Mich., in the No. 60 ROUSH Road Racing Ford Mustang Boss 302R seeks his first series win.
Only 111 points separate seventh through 10th in GTS points. Young guns Andy Lee, of Colorado Springs, Col., in the No. 20 Crown Seven/BestIT Chevrolet Camaro and Alec Udell, of The Woodlands, Texas, in the No. 17 Watson Racing/MDG Ford Mustang Boss 302S have had several podiums and look for wins; veterans Tony Gaples, of Libertyville, Ill., in the No. 11 Blackdog Speed Shop Chevrolet Camaro and Nick Esayian, of San Diego, Calif. in the No. 34 Natural Cures Aston Martin GT4 have been consistent top-10 finishers. Esayian is part of a banner weekend for TRG-AMR; the team has five GTS cars entered plus Buckler’s GT3-spec Aston Martin GT3 in GT. The team won in GTS a year ago with Brandon Davis.
Drew Regitz, of Denver, Col., in the No. 02 TRG-AMR North America Aston Martin GT4, Jorge de la Torre in the No. 04 TRG-AMR North America Aston Martin GT4, plus two new drivers in Santiago Creel, of Mexico City, in the No. 06 Hotbook/Pal Zileri Aston Martin GT4 and Derek DeBoer, of Ashland, Ore., in the No. 09 Project Motorsports/B.R.M. Watches Aston Martin GT4 join Esayian in the quintet of TRG-AMR GTS cars this weekend.
Capaldi Racing brings a two-car effort to Sonoma. Joey Atterbury, of Rochester, N.Y., looks to add to his two Mid-Ohio top-fives in the No. 33 Capaldi Racing/Ford Racing Ford Mustang Boss 302S while Brad Adams, of New Orleans, La., continues in the No. 96 Voodoo Music Experience/Datdog/Yo MTV Raps Ford Mustang Boss 302S. There are two other Mustangs entered with Mitch Landry, of Lake Charles, La. in the No. 97 VersaCrane/DeepSouth Ford Mustang Boss 302S and Erik Davis, of Burbank, Calif. in the No. 75 Always Evolving Racing Ford Mustang Boss 302S. Davis returns for the first time since Road America in June.
Ric Bushey, of Virginia Beach, Va., seeks a bounce back weekend in the No. 51 Nissan/Motul/SPL/OSGiken/Sparco/Sunoco Nissan 370Z after a challenging Mid-Ohio. He enters the weekend 11th in points, one spot ahead of Buz McCall, of Boca Raton, Fla. in the No. 72 RESET-MD Porsche Cayman S.
Additional season-long entrants Geoff Reeves, of Columbus, Ohio in the No. 40 Shadow Works/BestIT Chevrolet Camaro and Brian Kleeman, of Baltimore, Md. in the No. 07 Nissan/DXD Clutches/Aeromotions Nissan 370Z round out the expected 22-car GTS field.
Sonoma Raceway
11-turn, 1.99-mile permanent road circuit
Saturday, August 23, 8:55 A.M. PDT/11:55 A.M. EDT (GT/GT-A/GTS)
Green Flag:
Saturday, August 23, 2:35 P.M. PDT/5:35 P.M. EDT (GT/GT-A/GTS Race 1)
Sunday, August 24, 4:40 P.M. PDT/7:40 P.M. EDT (GT/GT-A/GTS Race 2)
Race Lengths:
50 minutes (GT/GT-A/GTS)
Television (on NBC Sports Network): Saturday, August 301:00 PM (EDT)
Live Internet Telecast (on
Saturday, August 23, 2:20 P.M. PDT/5:15 P.M. EDT (GT/GT-A/GTS Race 1)
Sunday, August 24, 4:10 P.M. PDT/7:20 PM. EDT (GT/GT-A/GTS Race 2)
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Car number 88 will enter the line-up at Sonoma Raceway

  • Bentley Boy Guy Smith to pilot second Bentley; joins Butch Leitzinger


(Poughkeepsie, NY / Herndon, VA 21st August 2014)  Dyson Racing Team Bentley announces a second Continental GT3 will enter the Pirelli World Challenge beginning with this weekend’s Round 13 and 14 races. Bentley Boy Guy Smith will pilot the number 88 car in a double header race weekend at Sonoma Raceway on Saturday, August 23 and Sunday, August 24.

Guy Smith
Guy Smith joins Dyson Racing Team Bentley concurrently with his performance in the European Blancpain Endurance Series as a member of the M-Sport Bentley race team. Butch Leitzinger will continue to pilot car number 08 through the season.

A Bentley Boy since 2001, Guy took the checkered flag at the 2003 24 Hours of Le Mans in the Bentley Speed 8. Following other successful racing competitions with Team Bentley, Guy joined Dyson Racing in the U.S. in 2005 and continued his winning career. That partnership led to further successful finishes – Guy and Dyson claimed the American Le Mans Series title in 2011 – followed by a close second in the 2012 championship.

With two wins this season as a member of the M-Sport Bentley team, Smith joins the American team with great insight into the Continental GT3’s prowess in endurance races. The sprint pace of the Pirelli World Challenge will provide a new experience that Smith is prepared for. “I’ve done extensive testing with the car in addition to my time behind the wheel during the endurance races. Bentley and the team have done a fantastic job. The Continental GT3 is a good, reliable, quick and easy-to-drive race car. I’m eager to join Butch and the team in Sonoma this weekend. The competition in the class is extremely strong and I’m looking forward to entering a second Bentley to compete in the circuit.”

Dyson Racing Team Bentley
Following a strong debut at Road America in Round 7 of this season’s Pirelli World Challenge, the team is focused on a strong finish in Sonoma. After a weather stop in Round 11 and an eighth-place finish in Round 12 at Mid-Ohio last month, the team will use knowledge gained over the course of the season to compete at Sonoma.

Chris Dyson, Vice President and Sporting Director for the team, comments: “The Continental GT3 has shown its strength on the track. This season has not been without challenges, but we have gained important knowledge about the car during each race. The differences from track to track have allowed us to make advancements in each of the following rounds. Butch’s lap times have continued to show progress and the team has worked extremely hard to meet the demands of the sprint race series. We’re excited about this weekend’s competition.”

Continental GT3 – A Proven Racer
Also competing this season in the Blancpain Endurance series, the GT3 has two first-place finishes to its credit. Its initial victory was scored at Silverstone in May followed by a second victory at Paul Ricard in June. In its most recent European competition, the GT3 proved itself as a 24-hour racer completing the Total 24 Hours of Spa race, with both entered cars fielding finishes in the top 20.

Bentley’s Director of Motorsport Brian Gush comments: “We’ve worked extremely hard this season. Both series present different challenges and the Continental GT3 has proven itself adept at competing in both of them. In many cases, the competition has several more years of testing and racing experience over us. However, we’ve proven that our team and the car are more than capable.”

Pirelli World Challenge
The Pirelli World Challenge continues its 25th anniversary season at Sonoma Raceway, August 23-24. Round 13 begins at 2:35 PDT Saturday and Round 14 at 4:40 PDT Sunday. Dyson Racing Team Bentley’s performance can be followed via live stream at The race can be seen Saturday, August 30 at 1:00 p.m. EDT on NBC Sports Network.

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New 8-Speed Enables Quicker, More Efficient Corvette

DETROIT – The all-new, GM-developed Hydra-Matic 8L90 paddle-shift eight-speed automatic transmission offered in the 2015 Corvette Stingray and Z06 enhances performance and efficiency, while delivering exceptional refinement and world-class shift responsiveness that rivals the world’s best dual-clutch transmissions.

In fact, in the 2015 Corvette Stingray, it enables a class-leading 29-mpg EPA highway estimate – a 3.5-percent increase in fuel economy over the previous six-speed automatic – and a quicker 0-60 time of 3.7 seconds, all while delivering wide-open-throttle upshifts quicker than those of the dual-clutch transmission offered in the Porsche 911.

2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray-blue

“GM’s new 8L90 eight-speed automatic represents a rare win-win-win scenario for customers,” said Kavoos Kaveh, global chief engineer for eight-speed automatic transmissions. “It offers greater performance and efficiency, while weighing less than the transmission it replaces. That’s a rare accomplishment in the industry today – and one for which GM has been awarded more than two dozen patents.”

With four simple gearsets for optimal efficiency and five clutches (two brake clutches and three rotating clutches), creative packaging enables the new eight-speed automatic to fit the same space as the previous six-speed automatic – and  the powerflow only uses two open clutches for low spin losses, which enhances efficiency. Extensive use of aluminum and magnesium also make it more than eight pounds (4 kg) lighter than the six-speed.

The greater overall performance and efficiency enabled by the 8L90 in the Corvette is due primarily to a new, wider 7.0 overall gear ratio spread, which enhances off-the-line performance with a more aggressive first gear ratio – 4.56 vs. 4.03 on the six-speed – helping achieve the quicker 0-60 time.

The top gear ratio is 0.65 vs. the six-speed’s 0.67. Combined with a new, numerically lower 2.41 rear axle ratio in the Stingray vs. the 2.56 gear used with previous six-speed automatic models, engine rpm is reduced by 8 percent (123 rpm) on the highway at 70 mph. The lower engine speed reduces fuel consumption, while a new torque converter design enhances refinement, particularly during low-speed gear changes.

Stingray models equipped with the Z51 Performance Package feature a more aggressive 2.73 axle ratio, while the Corvette Z06 features the 2.41 axle ratio.

Ratios compared: eight-speed automatic vs. six-speed automatic

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BROWNSBURG, Ind. — Top Fuel driver J.R. Todd and Funny Car pilot Matt Hagan raced to the quickest passes Wednesday during the opening day of testing for the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals at historic Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis.

NHRA teams utilized the first day of the two-day open test to prepare for the world’s most prestigious drag race, which will be held Aug. 27-Sept. 1 at the famed NHRA-owned multi-purpose motorsports facility that sits just west of downtown Indianapolis. The event, which will also feature the lucrative Traxxas Nitro Shootout for Top Fuel and Funny Car and many special activities with the sport’s legendary drivers to celebrate the milestone 60th anniversary, is the final race in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series regular season and will be televised by ESPN2 with more than 10 hours of coverage on Labor Day weekend.

Tickets for the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals are available by calling (800) 884-NHRA (6472) or logging on to

Todd blasted down the historic Indy dragstrip with a category-best performance of 3.768 seconds at 314.17 mph in his Optima Batteries dragster. Todd, who comes to Indy hoping to wrap up the 10th and final position for the Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship playoffs, said he and his Kalitta Motorsports team were continuing to work out the bugs with his brand new race car that they introduced last weekend at Brainerd.

“We brought out a new car in Brainerd and wanted to get data on it and struggled in qualifying and didn’t make any full runs,” Todd said. “The idea was to come here and see if the car is similar to Doug’s and that was the plan when we built the thing is to make it pretty identical to his car. The plan is to get some data on it and go from there and get ready for next week. Overall the plan is to get it close to the Mac Tools car so we can share info and help each other out. With them at the top and us in the No. 10 spot, the overall goal is for these cars to finish one and two at the end of the year and that is what we are striving for.”

Todd, who joined the Kalitta Motorsports team at the Las Vegas race in April, leads 11th place driver Bob Vandergriff Jr. by 130 points for the 10th and final playoff spot in Top Fuel.

“It would have been nice to wrap up the Countdown last week in Brainerd, but it is going to take a miracle for us to get bumped out of the tenth spot,” Todd said. “I’m not saying it isn’t going to happen, but our main focus is the race. Take care of the race and everything else will take care of itself. It is the biggest race of the year and we don’t want to worry about the Countdown. We can just focus on getting this thing qualified hopefully Friday night solidly and go to work from there.”

Rookie driver Richie Crampton posted the day’s second best time with a 3.773 at 320.97 in the GEICO/Lucas Oil dragster and defending winner Shawn Langdon, who also won the Traxxas Shootout in Top Fuel one year ago, powered to a testing best of 3.774 at 320.97 in his Al-Anabi Racing dragster. Antron Brown, 2011 U.S. Nationals winner, was fourth in his Matco Tools dragster with a 3.782 at 314.61.

In Funny Car, Hagan was quickest with a testing best of 4.032 seconds at 309.70 mph driving an all-black Team Mopar Dodge Charger.

“We are testing some new stuff and it is all going real well,” Hagan said. “We laid down a nice number and it is fun to be out on the track with conditions and everything like that. Our car is starting to come around and running real good numbers, some of the best numbers we’ve run all year. I think we’re really starting to peak at the right time. Things are starting to come around.”

Hagan is one of the Funny Car drivers who would like to add a U.S. Nationals victory to his racing resume. Last year here he was the No. 1 qualifier and set low E.T. and top speed, which are both the current track records, but like all of his rivals, the Virginia cattle rancher wants to add his name to the list of Indy winners.

“We are here to get tuned up for Indy,” said Hagan, who has one victory this season and is seventh in the points standings. “Everybody wants to get that trophy because that is the biggest race of the year and every driver wants to put that trophy on their shelf. You don’t want to walk away from your career and say ‘I never won Indy.’”

Robert Hight’s crew chief, Mike Neff, posted the second quickest time at 4.036 at 315.42 driving the Auto Club Ford Mustang. Jack Beckman, who is 11th in points and needs a strong performance at Indy to make the Countdown playoffs, posted a 4.046 at 317.87 in his Valvoline Dodge Charger. Four-time Indy winner John Force’s best lap of the day was a 4.060 at 315.34 in the Castrol GTX High Mileage Mustang. Force comes to Indy as the new points leader in Funny Car and is riding a five-race final round streak. He and Ron Capps will also decide the Funny Car final from Brainerd at Indy on Saturday during the third qualifying session.

Force’s daughter Courtney drove her Traxxas Mustang to a testing best of 4.101 at 316.45. Courtney is also trying to get her first Indy victory and follow in the footsteps of her older sister Ashley, a two-time winner of the Big Go. Courtney would also like to keep the current JFR streak of U.S. Nationals victories going, which started in 2008 with Hight.

“It is a lot of fun coming out here for testing,” she said. “It is a lot more laid back and it is exciting. It is always great being back here with the teams and the pressure is off. It kind of helps you as a driver since we will be back on this track next week for the U.S. Nationals. It is nice to get a few laps under your belt. We want to get the win at the U.S. Nationals and we start that when we get into qualifying. In the long run everyone is looking to have a consistent racecar when we get into the Countdown and this is where you prep for that.”

Steve Johnson made the only Pro Stock Motorcycle runs of the day and produced a best of 7.042 at 189.12 on his Suzuki. Former world champ Von Smith made the quickest Pro Mod run of the day with a 5.956 at 239.10 in his vintage Camaro.

* * *

Below is a listing of each Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock Motorcycle and Pro Mod competitor’s best performance from Wednesday’s testing:

Top Fuel

1. JR Todd – 3.768,  314.17

2. Richie Crampton – 3.773,  320.97

3. Shawn Langdon – 3.774, 320.97

4. Antron Brown – 3.782, 314.61

5. Spencer Massey – 3.791, 323.19

6. Brittany Force – 3.808, 322.04

7. Billy Torrence – 3.835, 322.73

8. Tony Schumacher – 3.857, 259.31

9. Khalid alBalooshi – 3.864, 311.34

10. Leah Pritchett – 3.885, 275.56

Funny Car

1. Matt Hagan – 4.032, 309.70

2. Mike Neff (running Robert Hight car) – 4.036, 315.42

3. Jack Beckman – 4.046, 317.87

4. John Force – 4.060, 315.34

5. Tommy Johnson Jr, – 4.099, 309.49

6. Courtney Force – 4.101, 316.45

Pro Stock Motorcycle

1. Steve Johnson – 7.042, 189.12

Pro Mod

1. Von Smith – 5.956, 239.10

2. Billy Glidden – 6.351, 177.49

3. Danny Rowe – 6.357, 153.60

4. Steve Matusek – 6.446, 147.94

5. Mike Castellana – 13.024, 64.80



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