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Racing News: NHRA Unleashed and NMCA to Join Forces

NHRA Unleashed and NMCA to Join Forces
The NMCA Flowmaster Muscle Car Nationals series has announced that the Aerospace Components NHRA Unleashed program will combine forces with the National Muscle Car Association (NMCA) to deliver fun and close side-by-side racing for fans and competitors alike. The NHRA Unleashed program, which was formed in 2010, will be featured at five NMCA Flowmaster Muscle Car Nationals events for the remainder of the 2011 season.

The NHRA has revised the 2011 NHRA Unleashed class rules and official schedule. Moving forward, the Unleashed classes will be featured at the following NMCA Flowmaster events: Auto Club Dragway at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California (July 8–10); Beech Bend Raceway in Bowling Green, Kentucky (August 5–7); Milan Dragway in Milan, Michigan (August 26–28); Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis, (October 6–9); and Royal Purple Raceway in Houston (November 11–13).

NMCA will waive NMCA membership fees for NHRA Unleashed racers, unless they want to compete for NMCA Series points. 

Aerospace Components and Trick Flow Specialties will continue to sponsor NHRA Unleashed, providing added benefits, including more than $3.1 million purse and cash contingencies for all five events, given the new association with NMCA Flowmaster series.

By combining resources, NHRA and NMCA will provide an opportunity for racers to take advantage of both organizations’ many benefits and services. The same opportunities can be extended to sponsors providing the opportunity to reach out to a larger group of participants and fans alike.

  The Yokohama-sponsored electric race car using AC Propulsion’s electric-drive system won the Pike's Peak International Hill Climb's Exhibition Class and set a new EV record with a time of 12:20:084.

AC Propulsion Powers Yokohama-Sponsored Electric Vehicle to New Record at Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
The Yokohama-sponsored electric race car using AC Propulsion’s proprietary electric-drive system broke its own 2010 record at the 89th annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. The AC Propulsion-equipped vehicle won the hill climb's Exhibition Class and set a new EV record with a time of 12:20:084, besting last year's record-breaking time of 13:17:575 by nearly one minute. It was also the race’s fastest EV among both cars and motorcycles.

For Team Yokohama’s winning EV race car, AC Propulsion engineers developed a high-performance cooling system for the vehicle’s 200-kW induction motor so it could operate at maximum output throughout the ascent up the mountain and break the record set last year with the same motor. (That motor powered the Yokohama-sponsored EV that beat the previous EV record set by Jeri Unser in 2003 by 65 seconds.)

This year's Yokohama EV, a rear-wheel-drive, open-wheel race car, was built by Summit Motorsports and driven by Japan’s Ikuo Hanawa. It used fuel-efficient Yokohama BluEarth tires and SANYO Electric Co. lithium-ion batteries. The Pikes Peak AC-180 motor, rated at 268 hp at 6,000–7,000 rpm and 258 lb.-ft. of torque from 0–5,000 rpm, is a high-performance version of the AC Propulsion AC-150 motor found in the BMW MINI E. The drive system utilizes the proprietary tzero-technology that also powered the MonoTracer MTE-150 to a first place victory in its category and achieved the highest efficiency overall in the 2010 Progressive Automotive X PRIZE.

AST Suspension – USA Sweeps Podium for Third Straight GRAND AM Continental Tire Challenge Race
AST Suspension swept the podium for the third straight GRAND AM Continential Tire Challenge race at the Road America 200. The Stevenson Motorsports No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro RS.R driven by John Edward rocketed to the point position and eventually slid past Billy Johnson is his No. 61 Roush Performance Mustang Boss 302R before a full course caution and a heavily damaged retaining wall caused the race to end under yellow flag conditions. Johnson and Edwards traded the lead four times in the final 20 laps. Many times throughout the race, the two were running side-by-side and Edwards’ winning pass was made with a daring power slide through Turn 1. The Rum Bum Racing team in their No. 13 BMW M3 took the final podium position.

In addition to sweeping the top three finishing positions, nine teams running AST Suspension finished in the top 12. AST Suspension currently holds eight of the top nine positions in the 2011 season team standings for the Grand Sport class.

GRAND-AM Continental Tire Challenge teams utilizing AST dampers include: Turner Motorsport, Roush Performance, Stevenson Motorsports, Fall-Line Motorsports, BimmerWorld Racing, Rum Bum Racing, DeMan Motorsport, CKS Autosport, Subaru Road Racing Team, Finlay Motorsports, A.M. Performance, i-MOTO, Trade Manage Racing, BGB Motorsports, Doran Racing and Compass 360 Racing.

Round 8 of the Continental Tire Challenge will take place at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Salinas, California, on July 9.

  The new GT3 car, based on McLaren’s MP4-12C high-performance road car, appeared in its revised form at the 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed, honed during a recent intense period of development.

Revised McLaren MP4-12C GT3 Debuts at 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed
The first McLaren car built for racing outside of Formula 1 since the McLaren F1 GTR made its public dynamic world debut at the 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed, held June 30–July 3. The new GT3 car, based on McLaren’s MP4-12C high-performance road car, appeared in its revised form, honed during a recent intense period of development.

New components designed to optimize the car’s aerodynamic performance include a front radiator, which increases the maximum ambient temperature at which the car can run, along with a new gearbox cooler mounted on the rear Aerodeck. These features complete an aerodynamics package incorporating a new front splitter, door blade, rear wing, diffuser and louvres in the front fenders, all of which is produced entirely from carbon fiber by McLaren Racing, following design input from McLaren Automotive.

Led by McLaren Group CEO Martin Whitmarsh and CRS Racing Team Principal Andrew Kirkaldy, McLaren GT is spending the 2011 race season developing the 12C GT3 before delivering 20 cars to privateer teams for GT3 racing in Europe in 2012.

Like the 12C road car, the MP4-12C GT3 features a one-piece carbon-fiber chassis, the ‘MonoCell’. McLaren introduced a carbon-fiber monocoque to Formula 1 in 1981, and the 12C GT3 will feature several other Formula 1-derived technologies. The 12C GT3 will be supplied with the same steering wheel design used by Lewis Hamilton in his MP4-24 Formula 1 car. Formula 1 suppliers past and present, including Akebono, Mobil 1, McLaren Electronic Systems, Ricardo and Michelin, are working with McLaren GT to create a race car specification technologically superior to the GT3 competition in 2012.

Drivers of the GT3 car for the 2011 Goodwood Festival of Speed weekend were Andrew Kirkaldy, 2010 Vodafone McLaren Mercedes test driver Oliver Turvey and McLaren Automotive Chief Test Driver Chris Goodwin.