Sears Holdings Corp. has extended its DieHard brand to a vehicle maintenance and vehicle assessment service.
A late race caution period threw Michelin technical partner teams strategies out the window, but a bold pass by former F1 standout Giancarlo Fischella carried the defending race champion Risi Competizione Ferrari to victory and delivered a ninth consecutive victory and first overall race win for Michelin in the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship here at the Oak Tree Grand Prix at VIR.
Michelin technical partner teams from Ferrari, Dodge Viper, BMW Team RLL and Corvette Racing dominated the first two hours and 30 minutes of the two hour 45 minute race before one by one each pitted for fuel, leaving Fisichella to surrender the lead for a final splash-and-go fuel stop with 26 minutes remaining.
Fisichella exited the pits ahead of all except Porsche’s Wolf Henzler who had stayed out of the pits, gambling that a late race caution may help him stretch his fuel to the finish. He got his wish as a caution appeared with 17 minutes remaining. That left Michelin cars aligned in positions 2 through 7 when the race resumed with just seven minutes left. Fisichella twice tried to pass Henzler around the outside entering turn one, but was rebuffed.
On the 82nd and final lap, Fisichella made his winning move under heavy braking into turn 11 and pulled clear to complete a sweep with co-driver Pierre Kaffer of the pole, fastest race lap and race win for the Houston-based Risi Competizione Ferrari team.
“I knew that it was the last lap and I braked on the limit to pass Henzler and then was able to pull clear,” said Fisichella. “We ran close and it was a nice fight but we were able to brake quite late and that got us clear. The car was consistent from the beginning to the end of the race,” said Fisichella, who was hard pressed to remember the last time that he won a race with a last lap pass.
“Seeing that pass and hearing Giancarlo describe his winning move as “braking at the limit” and “braking very late” brought a big smile to us all,” said Chris Baker, director of motorsport Michelin North America. “Tires are critical to braking performance and it is very difficult to develop tires that deliver extraordinary performance in such an extreme environment,” said Baker. “Michelin engineers work very hard to develop our excellent braking and Giancarlo’s move came on a set of Michelin tires that had been on the car for the final 71 minutes of the race.”
“I was a bit surprised that none of our technical partner teams split their strategies to cover that scenario by pitting one car and leaving the other out in case of a late caution, but it certainly made for an exciting finish against a very experienced and determined competitor,” said Baker.
Finishing third and fourth were BMW Team RLL teammates Dirk Mueller with co-driver John Edwards and Bill Auberlen and Andy Priaulx. Dodge Viper’s Jonathan Bomarito and Kuno Wittmer took fifth, ahead of teammates Marc Goossens and Dominik Farnbacher, while Corvette Racing’s championship leader Antonio Garcia, joined here by Jordan Taylor, finished seventh.
The next TUDOR United Sports Car Championship will be the Lone Star Grand Prix of Texas at Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas on September 20th.
Several TBC Corp. technicians have received 2016 ASE Technician of the Year honors.
Centric Parts has opened its Commercial Center of Excellence (CCE) in Memphis, Tenn. The CCE houses sales and support staff for the company’s Qualis division.
Federal-Mogul Motorparts, a division of Federal-Mogul Holdings Corp., has acquired the Beck/Arnley brand.
The Tire Industry Association (TIA) and Federated Insurance are providing TIA members with a free webinar that focuses on the hidden dangers of outdated policies and insufficient documentation of actions employers take related to their employees.
Hankook Tire Co. Ltd. and its holding company Hankook Tire Worldwide are placing 19 employees in new executive roles effective Jan. 1, 2017, as part of efforts to increase competitiveness in the global top-tier tire market.
Toyo Tire North America Manufacturing Inc. has won the Georgia Department of Economic Development's inaugural Automotive Supplier of the Year Award. The Georgia Automotive Awards recognize leaders throughout the state and honor them as part of the state's automotive ecosystem.
Robert Bosch LLC’s “Rain, Snow or Shine” beam wiper blade promotion includes both a rebate premium offer with purchase, as well as a sweepstakes with no purchase necessary to enter.
Pirelli Tire LLC is recalling 1,190 P Zero All Season tires that were built with an incorrect carcass component.
The newest member of the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance (Alliance) is Parts Pro Automotive Warehouse of Wickliffe, Ohio. Parts Pro joined the Alliance as a Bumper to Bumper affiliate on Dec. 1, 2016.
Bartec USA LLC’s new Tech200Pro diagnostic tool incorporates TPMS sensor testing and activation, tread depth measurement and tire pressure checks.
Is cash more important than profit? Good question. Whether or not you make a profit, you need to know where the money goes.
Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. has completed its $93 million purchase of a 65% interest in China-based Qingdao Ge Rui Da Rubber Co. Ltd.
The WildPeak H/T01A 2 by Falken Tire Corp. is the original equipment tire fitment on the 2017 Jeep Renegade Trailhawk.
The Philips D5S Xenon HID (high intensity discharge) bulb from Lumileds is available as an aftermarket replacement.