Archive for the 'American Sports' Category
American Sports World brings you the latest news stateside for NFL, NBA, NHL, NCAA & MLB. In addition, UK based American sports are also covered, with BAFL, BUAFL, EIHL, BUIHA, EBL & BBL. Europe’s Euroleague Basketball is also in the mix.
ASW also carries Euroleague TV, sports galleries, and promises even more in the coming months.
Check out the latest now at www.americansportsworld.com42 comments
After the barnstorming Daytona 500, everyone at UK American is breathing a sigh of relief as NASN (the North American Sports Network) has secured the rights to show the Nextel Cup live from the second race of the season, the Auto Club 500 from California Speedway in Fontana. A statement on nasn.com reads as follow …
LIVE NASCAR Nextel Cup returns to NASN on Sunday February 25th and will air on Setanta Sports Ireland (Sky Channel 434 in UK and 429 in ROI). Tune in at 8pm for all the exciting racing action from the Auto Club 500. Check back here on nasn.com for further announcements about additional motor sport programming on NASN.15 comments
Channel 5 have confirmed today that they have the rights to show the entire NASCAR Nextel Cup’s Daytona 500 as live. The race is to be run on Sunday Feb 18, and their showing will kick off just gone midnight (0010).
Whether 5 are trying to land the rights to the whole season, or whether they will go to another broadcaster (such as NASN) is as yet unclear.11 comments
With the Daytona 500 just over a week away, many questions are being asked. Will Montoya make the Chase (unlikely), will Toyota win a race in their first season (unlikely), will Jr finally add another Earnhardt name to the list of Cup Champions (unlikely), and will Smoke be on fire after last year’s disappointment (bet on it).
In the UK we have another burning issue. Will NASN - The North American Sports Network - actually be showing it? A quick trip to their site reveals …
“We are currently in negotiations with NASCAR regarding coverage for the upcoming season. As soon as there is anything to report on the situation, we will announce it here …”
By ”here” we’re talking www.nasn.com should you be wondering. Is it me or is that cutting things a little bit fine? Oh, and let’s not forget the Budweiser Shootout is less than a day away. Of course regular NASN viewers will recall having the same concerns last year, and will again be hoping it gets resolved. But why is the decision always so late? It’s not like NASCAR keep the schedule a closely guarded secret, and rumour has it they even have a pretty good website too.
Of course if NASN fail to secure the rights then viewers can look forward to NASN’s usual staple of repeated Canadian Football, hockey and college games. Or (and I’m just guessing here), they can cancel their subscription on Monday 19 and wait for Sky or MotorsTV to pick up the pieces.
Personally I’m praying that NASN get it resolved. And ASAP. They have done so in the past, but that never stops it feeling like a tax rebate - always very welcome, and even more surprising.2 comments
Word has reached UKA Towers that Shakespeare County Raceway is holding the “Yanks American Weekend” on 2 & 3 June 2007. Nothing else offers an exhilarating shot of adrenalin quite like drag racing - when we first learned the fastest, loudest sport on the planet was to be made with pure American beef, it’s no lie to say we damn near fell off our rocking chairs.
Fans of American cars can look forward to a two-day party, that’s for sure. And if the thought of American muscle tearing up the strip wasn’t enough, there are rumours Shakey will be providing some additional excitement. We will await confirmation before posting anything, but for now let’s just say one such event may see Gary bringing a Picnic.
More information will follow when we get it.
Shakespeare County Raceway Information
David Beckham’s current football club, Spanish giants Real Madrid, have confirmed that their English midfielder is to leave Spain at the end of the season to join Major League Soccer (MLS) team LA Galaxy.
The Californian team missed out on the play-offs this year, and are looking to strengthen their squad for next season. It is said that Beckham will be signing on for five years, his services weighing in at $250 million (£128 million).
LA Galaxy often play to crowds of around 20,000, which is considerably less than Beckham is used to in Europe. However, at almost $1.5 million per game, it would appear there is nothing second division about the terms.
LA Galaxy are managed by ex Ipswich Town player Frank Yallop, and make their home at 27,000 seater stadium The Home Depot Center, within the grounds of California State University.
LA Galaxy Website: http://la.galaxy.mlsnet.com
Benny Parsons, NASCAR legend and TV commentator, is stable but remains in critical condition doctors say. Parsons - BP to his friends and legion of fans - battled lung cancer in 2006, and was given the all clear last October, but complications saw him hospitalised on December 26.
Former cab driver Parsons raced in NASCAR from 1964 to 1988, making 526 starts and claiming 21 wins with 20 poles. He finished in the top three on 103 occasions and took the championship in 1973 driving the #72 Chevrolet. He added the Daytona 500 to his victories in 1975.
Parsons remains a firm favourite with fans, and one of the true gentlemen of the sport. Everyone at UKA sends their sincere best wishes for his latest battle.
Fans can send their messages of support to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Benny Parsons’ Website: http://www.bennyparsons.com
Offical NASCAR site: http://www.nascar.com
The 79th running of the Indianapolis 500 in 1995 saw Jacques Villeneuve take his first win in what was Champ Car’s final visit; from then on Indy Racing League would claim the famed Brickyard race. However, the race will be forever remembered not for the fiery Canadian’s achievement, but as the one where Stan Fox had that crash.
Going into turn one, lap one, Fox’s racecar cut loose and slid up the track, collecting the #14 racecar of Eddie Cheever before slamming hard into the wall. The impact shattered much of the racecar, including everything in front of Fox, and caused it to spin and launch skyward. As the racecar flew backwards Fox’s legs dangled, completely exposed, although amazing they suffered little damage, just bruising where his heel hit Cheever’s rear wing. The violent force of the crash, however, left him with serious head injuries which placed him in a coma for five days. Fox would recover, although he never raced again.
Had Fox not collided with Cheever’s racecar first the impact with the wall would surely have been fatal. Cheever said of it later, “If my job was to help make Stan’s impact a little softer then I was glad to be there.”
Considered by many as one of the worst crashes in the history of the Brickyard, it is almost impossible to believe that Fox survived. Tragically he died aged 48, killed in a road traffic accident in New Zealand in 2000.
My thanks to champcar4ever for posting this amazing footage on YouTube.7 comments
Gasoline has not been used in American’s premiere open wheel racecars for over forty years. Instead, the fastest racing on the planet has been powered by methanol, a fuel made from natural gas. One benefit of methanol over gasoline is that it is more environmentally friendly, but this has little to do with the initial decision to switch. It is also less volatile than gasoline, and therefore potentially safer in the event of an accident, and that was the key in the wake of 1964’s Indianapolis 500.
On lap two of the prestigious (then USAC sanctioned) 500-mile race, rookie driver Dave McDonald crashed his Ford Thompson into the wall, causing the fuel tank to rupture and the gasoline to ignite. With the race less than 5 miles in, McDonald had a nearly full tank, meaning approximately 70 gallons would feed the inferno.
McDonald’s flaming racecar then collected the racecar of the affable Eddie Sachs, a firm favorite with the crowd. Before the smoke cleared, a further five racecars would be involved, and Eddie Sachs would lose his life. McDonald would die later that same day in hospital from the injuries he received.
USAC ordered the switch to methanol, a decision that carried over to Champ Car when it was formed in the late 1970s, and subsequently the Indy Racing League (IRL) upon its inception in 1996.
While methanol fueled engines have driven America’s open wheel racecars and enjoyed support from Ford, Chevrolet, Honda, Toyota and others along the way, it is not seen as the future of motoring. Methanol is both a natural resource and expensive to produce, which doesn’t make it viable as a domestic replacement to gasoline. This issue is one being tackled by the IRL.
In 2006 the IRL used a fuel mixture of 90% methanol and 10% ethanol. Ethanol is a green fuel that is made from grain, and is thus a renewable fuel source. In 2007 the IRL will switch to 100% ethanol, and May’s Memorial Day weekend will see the first Indy 500 run entirely on a renewable and sustainable fuel.
Critics of ethanol say it isn’t the future of domestic motoring as its implementation is financially infeasible, while supporters claim their figures do add up, the cost of producing grain for fuel being far less than that of grain for foodstuffs. And while a standard car engine cannot run on ethanol, manufacturers like Fiat and Renault have developed engines that can use either fuel.
One factor that cannot be argued is production. Within the next two years the USA should be producing around 9 billion gallons of ethanol per year, while the annual requirement for gasoline is 150 billion gallons. More and more cars will be produced that run on ethanol, or can run on both fuels, and ethanol is likely to claim a share of the gasoline market, but the day it may become the fuel of choice is far from dawning.
1964’s fateful Indianapolis 500: http://indymotorspeedway.com/500d-64.htm
Ethanol Promotion and Information Council: http://www.drivingethanol.org
IndyCar Series Ethanol Page: http://www.indycar.com/tech/ethanol.php
Renault Clio Hi-Flex: http://www.renault.co.uk/NMNewsItemDisplay.aspx?nid=138&nc=10
YouTube Clip of 1964’s Indianapolis 500421 comments
In 2001 the newly opened Rockingham Motor Speedway, the UK’s first (and only) oval racing facility, was to host round 17 of Champ Car’s schedule. Nigel Mansell promoted the track on TV, the tickets sold well (although not well enough, according to Champ Car) and UK racing fans braced themselves for the arrival of the fastest racing on earth.
Prior to the UK the teams were in German for round 16 at the Lausitzring on 15 September. Four days earlier the towers had fallen, and while the UK was in a state of shock and solemnity, it could only be guessed how little Champ Car’s Americans and adopted Americans wanted to be overseas at that time.
The race at the Lausitzring only added to the general mood when Alex Zanardi suffered a horrific accident. While he would ultimately lose his legs, Zanardi was still in a coma when the teams arrived in the UK, and his chances of survival were unclear.
At the race, prayers were said for the victims of 9/11, while the racecars displayed support for both the victims of terrorism and the stricken Zanardi.
The black clouds that loomed were not just metaphorical. Rain had washed out qualifying, and even though the rain had stopped the race was in doubt. A design fault with the track meant that rain from the sodden foundations came up through its surface. The crowd soon learned what a seeper was, and also what a fleet of jet dryers sound like.
Yet the race went ahead. The teams had run a few practice laps, their first ever laps at the circuit. (The square design is unlike any circuit that Champ Cars run, so initial settings and gearing was a calculated guess.) The jets had cleared the standing water, and the green flag was finally in the air.
Despite the gloom, and under a grey sky, Rockingham was finally hosting the UK’s first ever Champ Car race. It was watched with heavy hearts, but it may have been a welcome diversion for some. And the ending? Up there with the best the UK has ever seen.11 comments