Motorsport News - US
15th August 2012
1. Sonoma Test could be Legge up for Dragon Racing driver
2. Hargrove returns to USF2000 at Road America
1. Sonoma Test could be Legge up for Dragon Racing driver: Katherine Legge wants to keep it simple in her first extended time behind the wheel of the No. 6 TrueCar Dragon Racing car since late June.
So the morning session of an Aug. 17 test at Sonoma will be routine: Learn the reconfigured layout, develop a baseline car set-up, get comfortable and gradually build up speed.
Then enjoy. Time, for once, is an ally.
Legge is scheduled to join 19 other drivers from 11 teams on the road course in preparation for the Aug. 24-26 GoPro Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma that will feature a 27-car lineup. Spectators are invited to the free session from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., which includes an open paddock and the opportunity to attend driver news conferences.
The raceway unveiled the modified track layout, which features changes to Turns 7, 9 and 11 designed to enhance overtaking, after consulting with IZOD IndyCar Series officials, drivers and team representatives. With the modifications, the track will be 12 turns and 2.31 miles and race distance will increase from 75 to 85 laps.
Legge got in about 20 laps before the alterations July 12 when Dragon Racing teammate Sebastien Bourdais tested. It was her first time on a road/street circuit since competing in the Brazil race in late April.
"I've just been training physically to get ready for (testing and the race)," said Legge, who was added to the roster when Chevrolet dedicated a second engine to the team for the eighth IZOD IndyCar Series race at the circuit. "I've been driving on the simulator. I've been watching YouTube videos. I asked the team to send me some data. I mean, I'm doing everything outside of the car that I can possibly do. There's no substitute for actually driving the car."
A positive race result would be important for Legge and the No. 6 car's primary sponsor, TrueCar, which is headquartered in Santa Monica, Calif., and has an office in San Francisco. The online car dealership is supporting six female racing drivers, including Legge, in their respective careers through its Women Empowered initiative.
"I just need to be as close to Sebastien in times as I can because we're pretty much going to be driving the same set-up with the same car," she said. "I think top 12 would be awesome, but I haven't been in the car for so long. A top 12 would be a really good result."
She watched from pit lane Aug. 5 as Bourdais, driving the No. 7 TrueCar Dragon Racing entry, posted a season-best fourth place in the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio. The result is another building block in the program - for the drivers and team.
"We're building, improving, and hopefully we can do the same at Sonoma and look forward to next year," said Legge, who has a best finish of 15th (Texas, Iowa) in eight races. "That's what we're working on already."
2. Hargrove returns to USF2000 at Road America: Canadian Scott Hargrove will return to JDC Motorsports for the final three rounds of the 2012 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship powered by Mazda season beginning with the series' tripleheader event at Road America on Aug. 17-18.
Hargrove has not competed in USF2000 since the doubleheader in St. Petersburg, Fla., after a couple of incidents on the track and lack of funding forced him to the sidelines. Hargrove is ecstatic to get back behind the wheel of the #38 for JDC.
"I have been waiting to make this announcement for a long time and I am thrilled to finally be able to do so." Hargrove said. "It would not be possible without the tremendous support of Race Energy, Analytic Systems and, of course, my parents."
In addition to the doubleheader at Road America, Hargrove will compete with JDC Motorsports on the streets of Baltimore and the season finale at Virginia International Raceway.
The 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series race continues with the GoPro Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma on Aug. 26 at the raceway in Sonoma. The race will be televised by NBC Sports Network at 4 p.m. (ET) and broadcast by the IMS Radio Network on SiriusXM (XM 94 and Sirius 212). The next Firestone Indy Lights race is the Grand Prix of Baltimore on Sept. 2 on the Streets of Baltimore.
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