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UPDATE This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' today. International Speedway Corp. ISCA, +0.32% ISCB, +0.00% announced Wednesday a deal to be acquired by Nascar Holdings Inc. in a deal valued at $2.0 billion.
Under terms of the deal, Nascar will pay $45 in cash for each International Speedway share outstanding, which represents a 2.0% premium to the Class A shares' Tuesday closing price of $44.10, and 7.1% above Nascar's original bid in November of $42 a share.
The deal is expected to close in 2019. International Speedway's stock, which is halted for news until 9:50 a.m. Eastern, has gained 0.6% year to date.
UPDATE Kyalami was substantially redeveloped to FIA Grade 2 standard and last week F1 commercial boss Sean Bratches referenced it while confirming "very productive conversations" about hosting a race in South Africa after 2020.
Autosport reports that the owner, Porsche SA, is not interested in promoting a grand prix itself.
However, it is keen to facilitate the return of F1 to Kyalami should an independent organizer raise the funds to make it happen, which has been rumored.
Latifi could replace Kubica at Williams (3rd Update)
Canadian Nicholas Latifi
UPDATE Speculation that Nicolas Latifi may replace Robert Kubica at Williams for the entire Canadian Grand Prix weekend appears to be way off the mark as the team are committed to their current driver line-up for the foreseeable future.
A Williams spokesperson put an end to the speculation and clarified, “As part of Nicolas’s role with us he gets six FP1 outings. Three of these in place of Robert, three in place of George. Nic’s first FP1 outing will be in Canada in place of Robert, his second will be in France in place of George.”
Thus for Montreal Latifi will be out on the Friday morning practice in place of Kubica, but thereafter the Pole will return to the cockpit for the remainder of the weekend.
McLaren did indeed consider buying their way into the 500
UPDATE McLaren offered to buy Fernando Alonso a seat in the Indianapolis 500, but the two-time Formula One world champion told the team he was uncomfortable replacing a driver who had earned a spot in the race.
The team made inquiries into buying out another driver to give Alonso a spot in the 33-car field in a non-McLaren backed effort. Brown said Alonso initially supported McLaren running a car for him if the team needed to satisfy obligations to their sponsors. But once the Spaniard learned he’d be replacing another driver and competing for another team, he said he was uncomfortable with pursuing that route. McLaren had zeroed in on Oriol Servia’s seat with Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports because McLaren already has a partnership with Arrow.
Ecclestone to buy Interlagos and save Brazilian GP? (2nd Update)
Ecclestone with his Brazilian wife Fabiana
UPDATE Not so fast - conflicting reports out of Brazil as politics drive the 'fake' news. Now comes work Sao Paulo’s local government has this week voted to exclude the circuit from a sale of city real estate which would have threatened its future as a motor racing facility altogether.
Mayor Bruno Covas, who does need to approve the concession, also spoke in support of the grand prix.
“There is no doubt that Sao Paulo can continue to host the grand prix,” he declared.
While there has long been talk of heading back to South Africa, according to F1 commercial boss, Sean Bratches, in addition to a return there, the Moroccan city of Marrakech is also in talks to host a round of the world championship.
"We race on five continents and the last habituated continent that we don’t race in is Africa," said Bratches at the Sport Industry Breakfast Club in London. "We have proactively been approached by Morocco and Marrakech to take a grand prix there. There is a high degree of interest.
Michael Andretti pitting in Mexico City in 2001. The crowd size rivaled the Indy 500
UPDATE Correction to our assumed 2020 IndyCar Schedule. The Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will return to its usual dates on the third weekend of April 17-19 in 2020. The event moved up to the second weekend in 2019 only because Easter was on the third weekend this year.
They have scheduled the event on that third weekend into the future except for 2022 when Easter will again be on that weekend Grand Prix President Jim Michaelian told AutoRacing1.com.
Sun Feb 16
Assumes 3 week separation between Surfers and St. Pete for travel
UPDATE The British team’s chief executive Zak Brown said last month that they were interested in a full-time IndyCar presence and now the co-owner of IndyCar’s Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports (SPM) team, Sam Schmidt, has said that McLaren officials have held discussions with close to every team in the series about a deal.
Schmidt told to the Indianapolis Star: “I think from June to last December, (McLaren) has talked to everyone in the paddock about everything from partnerships to equity to whatever.”
At least 3 more drivers to enter Indy 500 (4th Update)
Oriol Servia finally confirmed
UPDATE We already had this rumor as 'fact' for Oriol Servia. Today it was confirmed.
Chicago-based Team Stange Racing, LLC (TSR) announces today a partnership with Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports to field the No. 77 MotoGator Team Stange Racing with Arrow SPM Honda in the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500 with primary partner MotoGator and co-primary partner Lucas Oil. The entry will be driven by Indy 500 veteran Oriol Servia.
“I am so pleased to announce this great partnership with Arrow SPM today as Team Stange Racing makes its entry into IndyCar racing,” stated John Stange, Jr., Co-Owner, Team Stange Racing, LLC. “We are so blessed to partner with a company like MotoGator who is committed to building a winning IndyCar program with TSR.
Juncos Racing’'s two main sponsors withdrew ahead of tomorrow’s opening Indy 500 practice session he told RACER.
“Unfortunately, we lost the two main sponsors that we thought was going to happen,” Ricardo Juncos said. “The second one was just last week. But we are here and you know the car is ready, Kyle’s ready, the team is ready.”
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