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WTR Roar galstadIMSA has made adjustments to numerous WeatherTech SportsCar Championship models following the recent Roar Before the 24 test at Daytona International Speedway.

The Balance of Performance changes will have a direct influence on how various manufacturers fare in Prototype, GT Le Mans and GT Daytona during the Jan. 25-28 Rolex 24 at Daytona.

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Of interest in Prototype, Acura's brand-new ARX-05 DPi has received an increase in fuel capacity (+4L, 80L total) and will flow fuel faster during pit stops with a larger opening in the restrictor (+1.5mm).

Cadillac's DPi-V.R, which dominated every session at the Roar, has lost power to its 5.5-liter V8 engine with smaller openings feeding air to the motor (-0.6mm, 31.6mm total opening size), and has received an increase in fuel capacity (+1L, 68L total) and will flow fuel faster during pit stops (+0.5mm).

Mazda's RT24-P is the only DPi to receive a weight reduction (-15kg, 915kg total), has gained a rev limit increase for its 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo engine (from 8300 to 8600), lost boost at the bottom and top of the rev range, and will flow fuel faster during pit stops (+0.5mm).

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The Nissan Onroak DPi has received an increase in fuel capacity (+2L, 80L total) and will refuel faster during pit stops (+1.5mm). On the engine front, its 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6 will have a bump in boost as it reaches a peak RPM of 7100.

Aerodynamic changes have also been called for with most of the DPis. Taller Gurney flaps attached to the trailing edge of the Acura, Mazda, and Nissan engine covers are required; Mazda's Gurney is the tallest at 20mm, and a high-downforce upper rear wing element must be used. Nissan's rear wing main plane will run at a steeper angle. Of the four marques, only Cadillac, which set the fastest trap speeds on the banking, escaped Rolex 24 aero BoP changes, but the reduction in engine power could be the method chosen by IMSA to pull the DPi-V.Rs in line with Acura, Mazda and Nissan.

As IMSA previously told RACER, despite any change of plans within the ACO and FIA WEC to make BoP adjustments to the spec LMP2 cars on the grid, it has not and will not follow suit in the WeatherTech Championship.

In GTLM, BMW's new M8 GTE is the only model to lose weight between the Roar and Rolex 24 (-10kg, 1240kg total). Boost increased throughout almost the entire 7000rpm rev range for the BMW's twin-turbo V8 have has also been applied, and the M8 will have an increase in fuel capacity (+6L, 93L total), and will flow fuel faster during pit stops (+3.0mm).

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Corvette's C7.R (+1L, 91L total), Ford's GT (+2L, 91L total, and +1.0mm), and Porsche's 911 RSR (-3L, 92L total, -1.0mm) also have capacity or flow changes in store for their cars. Only Ferrari's 488 GTE was left out of fuel-related adjustments.

On the aero front, Corvette will lose top speed with a taller minimum rear wing angle (up from 0deg to 2deg) and Ford has also been hit with the same change (up from 2deg to 5deg).

In GTD, two cars have weight changes to make with Acura's NSX GT3 increasing (+10kg, 1310kg total) and Mercedes' AMG GT3 decreasing (-15kg, 1375kg total) on the scale. Three engine power modifications have been called for, with Audi's V10-powered R8 LMS GT3 going to air restrictors with smaller openings (-1.0mm, 39mm total) along with the Audi-based Lamborghini Huracan GT3 (-1.0mm, 38mm total), and BMW's M6 GT3 has received more boost at every step of the rev range with its twin-turbo V8.

From the nine GTD models, five have fuel capacity and flow changes for the Rolex 24. Acura (+5L, 105L total, and +1.0mm), Audi (-3L, 91L total, and -1.0mm), BMW (+3L, 106L total, and +1.0mm), Ferrari's 488 GT3 (+2L, 94L total, and +0.5mm), and Lamborghini (-3L, 92L total, and -1.0mm) complete the extensive BoP efforts.

Practice for the Rolex 24 starts next Thursday, Jan. 25.

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Dennis Reinbold has made a sizable investment in his Verizon IndyCar Series team ahead of the 2018 season with an intent to run two cars at the Indy 500 and more races afterwards, if possible.

His Indianapolis-based Dreyer & Reinbold Racing team is expected to have Sage Karam back in one of its Chevy-powered entries, and with growing interest for a second DRR Indy entry – possibly for Danica Patrick – new cars have been ordered from Dallara.

"We've got two new DW12s coming from them," Reinbold told RACER. "And I do plan to run a second car at Indy. I have spoken with her people, but I don't know where we're at with them."

Patrick and GoDaddy announced their reunion for her Daytona 500 and Indy 500 farewell tour this morning, and Reinbold says the great NASCAR season-opener in February is likely her first priority to solidify.

"We haven't heard from her group for a little while, and I assume they're working on Danica's NASCAR plans first, since she wants to do Daytona and that's right around the corner," he said. "You know how it is in the offseason. We've spoken with everybody, heard from everybody, and she isn't the only one we're in conversation with."

Although the DW12 chassis is in its final years of action ahead of its replacement tentatively scheduled for 2020 or 2021, Reinbold has found enough value in the series' current state to spend money on new cars.

"I'm pretty happy with how things are evolving in IndyCar, so I'm willing to do more and push harder on our end to do more things," he said. "And I'm really happy to get to a place where we can run two cars.

"It solidifies us in the future if we decide to do more races, because we'll have all the equipment we need. We'll have three cars total, so we can do two at Indy, at minimum, without fear for spares or anything else. With three cars, we have all kinds of options."

A farewell association with Chevy, which would place Patrick in a Camaro ZL1 NASCAR entry at Daytona and a Dallara DW12 propelled by the brand's twin-turbo V6 powerplant, is also rumored to be part of her negotiations.

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Takuma Sato's eight-month Indy 500 victory tour reached its pinnacle on Wednesday evening when he and Michael Andretti were presented with their Baby Borg trophies at the Automotive News World Congress Dinner in Detroit.

"It's been an unbelievable journey, and for the last eight months it feels like it hasn't stopped for a single moment," Sato told RACER.

"Immediately after I crossed the finish line at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, my body has belonged to somebody else – you have to just go on and on and on. Which is fantastic, I really appreciate it all, but today, after eight months, to finally hold my Baby Borg Warner Trophy is really special."

Formal celebrations for Sato's Indy win extended all the way to his native Japan, where he accompanied the BorgWarner Trophy on its first-ever trip outside of the United States for a two-week tour late last year. But now, he says, the Baby Borg presentation marks the end of reflection on his success last May in favor of preparations for the 2018 season and his return to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.

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"I'm going back home with RLL and there are some familiar faces there, but there are also some new people that arrived since I was there in 2012," he said.

"But we've worked hard together for the last couple of months to really start building towards the 2018 season. So this is really the last occasion for celebrating my win with Michael, and what we achieved together at the 2017 Indy 500 is fantastic. So this event is one of great joy, and after this it's time to focus 100 percent on 2018. It's going to be an exciting year, and I can't wait to get back behind the wheel."

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The 2017 Indianapolis 500 marked Andretti's fifth Indy victory as a team owner, and third from the past four years.

"What's going to stand out about this one is, we are again part of history where it's the first Japanese driver to win, and for him to do it with the Honda engine is big," Andretti told RACER. "And I knew it was going to be big, but it ended up probably being even bigger than I thought it was going to be. Especially in Japan; it was a huge, huge deal, and it was special to be a part of that."

Sato's move to RLL means that Andretti Autosport will have to look elsewhere in its quest to continue its strong recent record at the Speedway, but with the full-time line-up of Ryan Hunter-Reay, Alexander Rossi, Marco Andretti and new arrival Zach Veach set to be reinforced by additional Indy-only entries for Stefan Wilson and Andretti returnee Carlos Munoz, Andretti feels good about the team's chances.

"I'm really excited about our line-up," he said. "With Indy we have a really strong line-up, with six quality bullets in our gun. We're working really hard as a team and we're putting in a big effort, and hopefully it's going to pay off. Wining three out of four is almost unheard of, so to think that you're going to go out and win four out of five... it's going to be really tough. But we're up for the challenge, and I think we have really good quality drivers, really good quality engineers, and really good quality people all the way through our team. So it can happen. We feel as a team that we can go out and do it."

The Baby Borgs, which are miniature replicas of the Borg Warner Trophy, stand 14 inches high and weigh five pounds. Valued at $50,000 each, they were first awarded in 1988, with Rick Mears the first recipient.

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Danica Patrick will end her motor sports career competing with a sponsorship she's most recognized for – GoDaddy.

The company announced Thursday it will back Patrick's ventures in both the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500. The effort has been called the "Danica Double."

GoDaddy has been a supporter of Patrick since 2006, when she was competing in the IndyCar Series. When Patrick made the move to stock cars in 2010, GoDaddy followed, and was Patrick's primary sponsor until 2015. As the face of the company, Patrick appeared in 13 GoDaddy Super Bowl commercials.

"This is definitely the way I want to finish my racing career – at these two iconic races, backed by my iconic, long-time sponsor," said Patrick. "GoDaddy was there for me when my career was just really starting so it's exciting to be getting back in the GoDaddy 'green' for my final two races.

"Our brands have always been powerful together, and I think it's awesome to have them at my side when I go 'all in' with my business after racing."

Patrick still has not announced the teams she will drive for in either race. She expressed earlier this month how things are progressing slower than she'd like. Her list of options became one less last week as Chip Ganassi Racing president Steve Lauletta revealed that CGR is out of the running to field Patrick in either race.

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It was November when Patrick announced she would no longer be competing full-time in NASCAR after five seasons at Stewart-Haas Racing. She became the first female to win a pole in NASCAR's premier series when she captured the top spot in the 2013 Daytona, and her best finish in the event is eighth.

In the Indianapolis 500, Patrick made her mark with two top-five finishes in seven starts. Patrick has led 29 laps in the event.

"You could say, 'we're getting the band back together,'" GoDaddy chief marketing officer Barb Rechterman said. "It makes sense in that our goals are so well-aligned – she's passionate, tenacious and creative just like so many of our customers who are also looking to leverage the power of the Internet and turn their 'side hustle' into a full-time business. Danica absolutely epitomized the heart of our GoDaddy customers. We love it."

JohnAndrettiIndyCar veteran and cancer survivor John Andretti joins Marshall Pruett for the Week In IndyCar podcast in one of the most inspirational episodes to date. The two cover the news of Danica Patrick's struggles to find an Indy 500 seat, the appointment of Leena Gade as James Hinchcliffe's engineer, and then they dive into John's thoughts on driving for Jim Hall, Richard Petty, his days as an NHRA Top Fuel driver, driving the 1990 Porsche Indy car, his charity efforts with the Riley Children's Hospital, his lone appearance at the Bathurst 1000, and other great topics provided by fans and listeners.


Toro Rosso has been enjoying the design benefits of having an exclusive partnership with Honda for 2018, according to team principal Franz Tost.

Honda opted to stay in Formula 1 and supply Toro Rosso for the next three years after ending its partnership with McLaren early, with its former team taking over from Toro Rosso as a Renault customer. Tost says he has been happy with the early stages of working with the Japanese manufacturer and the team has already noticed the benefits of not having to deal with the demands of other customers.

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"There will be a big change with Honda," Tost told RACER. "We are very much looking forward to working together with them. We started in the last month of last season with a couple of meetings and I must say that the cooperation is working really well. I am also convinced that they will come up with a reliable and powerful engine.

"I think that Toro Rosso can only profit out of this cooperation because we are the only team this year that is provided with these engines, which means we can be concentrated on each other.

"We saw it already when we needed to design everything to fit the engine into the car, we don't need to ask others for any compromises, we can do it like we wanted. So I am more than optimistic regarding Honda."

The Honda deal marks Toro Rosso's first works works partnership; something that Tost said represents an exciting milestone for the team. "Yes, it's something new and it's something special for Toro Rosso," he said. "I hope that we can use this chance in the best possible way to improve our performance."


Pirelli is keen to continue as Formula 1's tire supplier beyond the 2019 season ahead of an expected tender later this year.

The Italian manufacturer has been F1's single tire supplier since the 2011 season, having originally been tasked with increasing the number of pit stops required in order to lead to more on-track overtaking. In 2017, Pirelli was asked to make more robust compounds that drivers could push harder on as wider tires were introduced, and is looking to combine that with more stops this coming season after a number of one-stop races.

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With the current supply contract expiring at the end of the 2019 season, motorsport boss Mario Isola expects a tender to be opened up at some point this year, and says Pirelli is keen to continue working with F1's new owners Liberty Media.

"I think [the tender will open in 2018] because I believe there is the usual process with the tender that means they need to take a decision this year," Isola told RACER. "I'm not in a position to tell you if it's June or September or when but for sure [this year].

"If we continue then it is clearly less of a problem but if there is a new manufacturer coming then they need time to develop a product.

"We are happy with the current situation, this is not a mystery. Also our big boss Mr Tronchetti told the media that we are happy with Formula 1. We are very interested to understand what the plans are of the new owners for Formula 1, because there were a lot of discussions on future plans.

"We are working a lot with them. They have some new ideas, we know it's difficult for them and sometimes the criticism is a little bit too much, in my opinion. It's not easy. It's easy to criticize, but it's not easy to make things happen. We are happy and we want to continue.

"It depends on many factors of course, but yes, we're happy [with how F1's future looks at the moment]."


Mercedes and McLaren have become the latest teams to confirm the launch date of their 2018 Formula 1 cars.

Defending champions Mercedes will follow a similar schedule to last season and unveil the W09 at Silverstone on February 22, with the new car completing 100km (62 miles) as part of a shakedown test on the same day. The date is the same as Ferrari's launch in Maranello, with the two teams working to avoid a clash in terms of timing.

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McLaren's new car – which will be called the MCL33 – will be revealed a day later; three days before the start of pre-season testing, which gets underway on February 26 at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. The four-day test runs until March 1, with the second test then taking place from March 6-9 at the same venue.

McLaren physically unveiled its 2017 car at its factory last year, but so far the team has not confirmed any other details regarding the launch other than the date. Executive director Zak Brown recently said the car will have "a new look and feel" about it this season, with a number of new sponsorship deals set to be announced this month.

After five seasons without a victory, McLaren is hopeful of challenging at the front again this coming year, having switched power unit supplier from Honda to Renault.

While Ferrari is currently scheduled to be the first team to launch its 2018 car – which will feature the Halo cockpit protection device – last year Williams released images ten days before the start of pre-season testing.

Toro Rosso is also planning on following its usual schedule of unveiling its new car in the pit lane in Barcelona on the evening before the start of pre-season testing, but has yet to finalize its program.

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