New URL for JOWT

Junior Open Wheel Talent Blog has moved to http://www.JuniorOpenWheelTalent.com



Time For A Change

The Time For Change Is Now.....

Junior Open Wheel Talent: Over the last year and a half I've enjoyed keeping everyone up to date with news from around the junior formula world. What started out as a trial run has become a serious hobby for me. Obviously, I enjoy what I'm doing very much and I want to continue to help promote drivers and teams in the junior formula ranks. I've had a few different offers from the racing community to try and do something else or write something else, but at least for now, I've decided I want to keep doing my own thing with Junior Open Wheel Talent.

A New URL: My site address has always been juniorformula.blogspot.com ---- which has been great. But it's time for an upgrade. Many of you have already inquired about a traditional (more professional) domain name. It's finally time to take that step. From now on, you can refer to www.junioropenwheeltalent.com for your junior formula addiction. If you enjoy the content here and have the site bookmarked, make sure to update to the new url. If you are a subscriber, the RSS feed will automatically direct you to the new site.

Why The Change? When I first started the Junior Open Wheel Talent Blog... I wanted to keep everything simple. I wanted to build my audience with content not appearance. Your readership has been great and I feel that I owe it to you (the readers) and myself to take the next step in offering you a more professional blog. I've been working with Forrest Stewart, a web designer who has a very impressive resume. The new site is sort of a work-in-progress as we fine tune everything. In the long run, I hope you will all be very pleased with the move.

Content: Some of you might be asking, "Will the content change?". No, the content will be exactly the same, except better. The new site will have advertisements and advertising space for interested drivers/teams. In the past, I've been hesitant to use any advertisements, but running the site takes a considerable amount of time and effort. I'm hoping to increase my visibility at the race track as well, which will be funded by the advertisements on the blog.

Your Feedback: I'm constantly working on new improvements and ideas for my coverage, so stay tuned for some exciting changes. In the meantime, make sure to send me an email and let me know what you think of the new site. I always enjoy suggestions for improved coverage, or inside information about a driver, team, or series. You can contact me at Ryan@JuniorOpenWheelTalentDotCom.

All of you have been a big part of this site's development and I hope to continue that. Thanks for reading and I hope to see you at the new site: www.junioropenwheeltalent.com



Leilani Münter Returns To Indy Lights

Leilani Münter will make her return to the Indy Lights series this weekend at Chicagoland Speedway. The 33-year-old race driver was very impressive in her Indy Pro Series debut back in 2007. Since that time, she has been focusing on the environment and educating others about creating a greener planet.

In an effort to further promote environmental awareness, Münter will set up a recycle bin outside the Team 3G tent at this weekend's event in Chicago. The recyclable plastic obtained at the race will be used to create t-shirts for Leilani... courtesy of her new sponsor Ecobabble.

Ironically, her last race in the Indy Pro Series also took place at Chicagoland Speedway. She finished 13th out of 22 drivers. Her most notable performance came in her series debut when she qualified 5th at Kentucky Speedway. Prior to her time in the Indy car feeder series she drove late model stock cars.

(photo: Von Swank Photography/LeilaniMünter.com)


De Phillippi Sneaks Past Vernon at Road America

Connor De Phillippi swept both rounds of the Skip Barber National championship over the weekend at Road America. The 16-year-old phenom now has 7 SBN wins--- which is a new series' record. Grant Maiman held the previous record, having recorded 6 wins during the 2002 Formula Dodge National Championship.

Connor's victory on Sunday didn't come easily. The race was ended prematurely due to several large incidents on track. The decision led to a drag race finish between Court Vernon and Connor De Phillippi. Connor came away with the win by a mere .004 seconds at the stripe (see photo above).

Series rookie Cameron Dodson of Greenfield, Indiana put in the drive of the day. Dodson improved 10 positions in 8-laps, coming from 13th on the grid to finish an impressive 3rd. Dodson improved the most positions earning him the hard charger title.

Honorable mention should go to Nazareth, Pennsylvania's Sage Karam who led 2 out of the final 3 laps after starting fourth. Ultimately, Karam finished the race where he started (4th), but that didn't stop him from setting the fast lap of the day with a 2:33.956. Ashley Freiberg, who earned the hard charger title in Rd. 9, rounded out the top-five. Freiberg managed to improve 4 positions in Sunday's race after starting back in 9th.

Complete Results

(photo: Jim Altemus/ www.skipbarber.com)



J.R. Hildebrand Victorious at Sonoma

J.R. Hildebrand did everything correct in today's Firestone Indy Lights race as he won by a 15.8918 second margin on his home track; Infineon Raceway. The 21-year-old California native led every lap of today's race enroute to his fourth win of the season in the Indy Lights series. He currently holds down the overall championship lead by a large margin. Felipe Guimaraes posted another top-five finish with a very impressive performance to finish 2nd on the day. Guimaraes has finished all three of his Indy Lights races within the top-five this season. James Davison, who won the series' previous race at Mid-Ohio, rounded out the top-three by claiming his 6th top-five finish of the year.

Sebastian Saavedra earned the hard charger title as he improved 12 spots in today's race. Saavedra, who is currently second in the overall standings, had to start from the rear of the field in 19th position (after qualifying 2nd) due to an engine change by the team post qualifying. He put in a very impressive drive to finish 7th.

Complete Results

(photo: www.jrhildebrandracing.com)



Connor De Phillippi Wins Round 9

Skip Barber National front runner Connor De Phillippi won Round-9 of the season championship earlier today at historic Road America. Today's win marks the sixth win of the season for 16-year-old De Phillippi. Karting scholarship co-winner Court Vernon finished 2nd in today's race after starting 5th. Ashley Freiberg had a phenomenal drive that saw her improve from 14th on the grid to finish 3rd--- a feat that earned her the "hard charger" title.

Full Results
(photo: Jim Altemus)



2010 Indy Lights Schedule

The 2010 (13-race) Indy Lights schedule was released today, featuring 12 returning tracks and the addition of Barber Motorsports Park.

The new schedule features:
23.0%- street courses
38.5%- road courses (counting Edmonton)
38.5%- ovals

It seems the series is continuing to put more emphasis on road racing than they have in the past. That said, they have done a nice job of balancing everything out to give the drivers an adequate amount of experience in each vocation. In 2008, 8 out of the 12 events were run on an oval. This season, 2009, the schedule had a nice mix with roughly 50% of the races on road courses and the other 50% on ovals.

Without further ado, here is your 2010 Indy Lights schedule.

March 27th or 28th- Streets of St. Petersburg
April 10th or 11th- Barber Motorsports Park
April 17th or 18th- Streets of Long Beach
May 28th- Indianapolis Motor Speedway
June 19th or 20th- Iowa Speedway
July 3rd or 4th- Watkins Glen International
July 17th or 18th- Streets of Toronto
July 24th or 25th- Edmonton City Centre Airport
August 7th or 8th- Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
August 21st or 22nd- Infineon Raceway
August 27th or 28th- Chicagoland Speedway
September 4th or 5th- Kentucky Speedway
October 1st or 2nd- Homestead-Miami Speedway


Mücke Motorsport Suspended

Mücke Motorsport has been given a four-round suspension in the Formula BMW-Europe series after race stewards and the Hungarian ASN determined that all three of the team's cars failed post race inspection at the Hungaroring.

The violation stems from illegal oil pressure relief valve springs. The team is currently filing an appeal and will compete in the up coming events (on a provisional basis--meaning their results will not count unless they are found innocent in the appeal). The penalty has already cost Mücke Motorsport driver Michael Christensen a race win and the series points lead. The other drivers affected by the violation are Jack Te Braak and Timmy Hansen. According to race stewards, the drivers had no prior knowledge of the illegal valve springs. Just as a side note.....Sunday's race at the Hungaroring marked the best result of the season for both Jack Te Braak and Timmy Hansen.