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This season, two of the most common words that have been uttered while in the pit lane are tyre management. Since the introduction of the Bathurst 1000 in the scene, these words will more likely be the topic of discussion once more.
The season of racing also creates a high demand for tyres on the Gold Coast which is a good thing for tyre dealers.
There is a big change this year because of the Great Race which is the most awaited among the participants and teams will more likely be tacking tyre management in a new light.
Last May, we were able to witness a number of tyre failures during the event at Phillip Island and it prompted the decision for the Bathurst 1000 to be installed with the 2016 Dunlop construction tyres.
Majority of the teams will have to adjust with this decision as they are still getting used with the new tyres this 2017. According to Michael Caruso of Nissan, the tyre will act to be the saviour for this particular year.
He said that using the 2017 tyre made them face various ups and downs but the recent changes made them experience various one-lap speeds which is quite useful. It is not the same when it comes to Bathurst since they are using the 2016 Dunlop tyre. The tyre is different and it has more impact to the speed as demonstrated by Bathurst in the previous year. This is still a great improvement knowing they did not focus much on tyres for this season.
They are expecting to experience a number of curve ball since they have not been using that particular tyre for almost a year now. He added that they are excited about the 2016 tyre to be used at the Bathurst because they feel that it will be this year’s saviour.
Caruso is quite disappointed with tyres because of the failures he has experienced this particular season. This prompted racers to buy new tyres on the Gold Coast as well as they have seen the importance of tyres when it comes to winning a race especially when there are a lot of competition.
In the recently concluded 60 kilometer Lobatse mountain bike challenge, Shadrack Motswiri took home the championship. He was able to come out victorious amidst a sea of renowned cyclists as challengers such as Graham Broomhead. Shadrack was able to finish the challenge within 2 minutes and 48 seconds.
It was quite a tight race for the contenders and the 30 year old champion coming from Gaborone Garage. He admitted the hard work he needed to accomplish in order to finish the mountainous terrains and come out on top of Broomhead and Michael Knott who placed second and third in the competition. While Broomhead was able to do it within 3 minutes and 13 seconds, Knott came very close at 3 minutes and 19 seconds.
The 60 kilometer challenge was not an easy one for many of the strong contenders were not able to finish the race due to various circumstances including mechanical failures and over fatigue. The Lobatse mountain bike challenge has other categories such as the 40 kilometer race. For this category, Molokwane Rankgwathi was first to finish while Mokgwe Lebonetse and Mogomotsi Setlhare came as second and third respectively.
There was also a 20 kilometer category for the men which Joshua Bezuidenhout took home the victory along with the second and third placers, Cecil Botha and Barwise Theo. The junior female category, on the other hand, was won by Janine Dutoil while her rivals Mpho Molokwane, second place, and Alta Malherbe, third place, followed suit.
For the women’s open category in the 20 kilometer challenge, the first prize was snatched by Zaheera Essof, second place by Mmabaledi Mosweu and third place by Cariana Herbst. The last category in the mountain bike challenge was the 5 kilometer which includes both junior boys and girls. Lily Malherbe, an 11-year-old, came out to be the best cyclist among her peers in the category.
Among the prizes took home by Shadrack is a new cycling jacket, trophy, medal, certificate and a cash prize. The event was sponsored by Lobatse Town Council as well as Spin city and many other sponsors.
If they fail to find a competitive engine, Red Bull will pull out of F1 at the end of this season. Both Helmut Marko, the brand’s motorsport consultant and Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz have confirmed the team will split from Renault at the end of the season due to their frustration about the engines delivered by the French manufacturer. This will end the partnership with Renault a year early.
Last Friday evening, a round of rumors linked the Volkswagen Group with a takeover of the team but Red Bull has told Sky Sport F1 that there were no truth to the rumors and the speculations are wide off the mark.
With Mercedes Benz unwilling to supply a team that is challenging their dominance and Honda’s units performing a lot worse than Renault, Ferrari is the only option that is available to the Red Bulls for a short term basis. However, Marko told Sky Sports that they have decided that if there is no competitive engine they can use, they will leave Formula 1. When Marko was asked whether he plans to switch to Ferrari, he did not go into details because what he really wants is a competitive engine because at Monza, they were 2 seconds behind. He feels that it does not make sense competing if there is no power unit.
Marko also gave a firm indication that the Red Bull’s deal with Renault will be terminated a year early. Mateschitz also told an Austrian newspaper that the separation with Renault at the end of the season is a mutual agreement because there is no longer any sense to work together.
If Red Bull is going to withdraw from Formula 1 it would put the future of the two teams in doubt unless another investor is found. It would also cast doubt on the Austrian Grand Prix that is currently being promoted by Red Bull and held at their circuit Red Bull Ring.
However, according to Volkswagen, they could buy the team to be their engine providers for 2018. Any speculations are said to be inaccurate because a deal with Volkswagen won’t be done short term. There is also a long term agreement with Audi but there is no deal yet as of now.