Saturday, August 31, 2013

Pickett to Indycar? We'll know before Petit Le Mans: Updated!

 Not surprised at all, but given the myopic, self-indulgent reactions to this story by some, it seems they are surprised Pickett sees no value in -

  1. Running WEC which is poorly attended and only carried live flag to flag on a channel similar to Speed TV but with far less reach (Motors TV). Only available in the United States via Speed2 Online Channel or WEC's web site.
  2. Is not enthralled with P2 and its restrictions of having a silver driver unless USCR goes around the FIA/WEC and allows 100% Pro line ups.
  3. No possibility of a P1 program from HPD or Porsche in 2014
These are all reasonable to bail on the USCR. The new series sees no value in P1 and wants to ensure its Daytona Prototypes even if they have to battle with P2 cars is still the top class and the fastest cars on track.

 While there's no driver restriction in DP's, they are largely devoid of the challenging aspects that P1 and Indycar offer.

 Lots of moving pieces remain for 2014 but the picture is starting to become very clear as we head into the final three races of the last ALMS season.

 Update (9/25)

 Marshall Pruett on Mid-Week Motorsports when I asked for updates on what Pickett might be doing next season, dropped a bit of a bombshell when he suggested they might do a GT-D program with a certain Tri Pointed Star brand (Mercedes Benz). 

 This isn't shocking really considering Klaus Graf has been racing with Rowe Racing in VLN series and N24 the last two seasons. In case you didn't know Rowe is one of Mercedes Benz SLS Customer Sports supported teams.

 The pointed star has dominated endurance racing this season among the GT3 cars (N24, Dubai, Bathurst, Spa 24 and Blancpain Finale 1000km race). It also has at least one victory in every major GT3 championship but I think Super Stars. But it has victories in GT Open including an overall victory at Jarma, at Zandvoort with the FIA GT Series and I think in British GT. Buk and Gotz are also second in the ADAC GT (Germany) championship with a race coming up this weekend.

 My guess is this would be a stopgap until a decision could be made either on IndyCar or LMP1 for WEC, maybe USCC (2016) and Le mans.

 They said in Oct they would announce their intentions... We'll see.

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