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Weekend racing previews, plus videos; lots of videos

Now that IndyCar is out of the way, we won't have to worry about which Sportsnet channel the races will be on and can just concentrate on TSN.

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Now that IndyCar is out of the way, we won’t have to worry about which Sportsnet channel the races will be on and can just concentrate on TSN.

With five channels, TSN is in a position to televise some of the things we’ve been missing since the Speed Channel was axed. NASCAR Sprint Cup practice, for instance.

So with the F1 Italian Grand Prix taking place at Monza Sunday morning and the last race before the Chase for the Championship scheduled for Richmond, Va., on Saturday night, here’s where you can watch all the action this weekend:

Friday, Sept. 5

  • 7:55 a.m. ET – Formula One: Italian Grand Prix: Practice on TSN2
  • 1 p.m. ET – NASCAR Sprint Cup Federated Auto Parts 400: Practice on TSN2
  • 7 p.m. ET – NASCAR Nationwide Series: Virginia 529 College Savings 250 on TSN2
  • 11:30 p.m. ET – NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Federated Auto Parts 400: Qualifying on TSN4

Saturday, Sept. 6

  • 7:55 a.m. ET – Formula One: Italian Grand Prix: Qualifying on TSN1, TSN3, TSN4, TSN5
  • 1 p.m. ET – (ENCORE) Formula One: Italian Grand Prix: Qualifying on TSN2
  • 5:30 p.m. ET – NASCAR Canadian Tire Series: Clarington 200 on TSN2 (TAPE)
  • 7 p.m. ET – NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Federated Auto Parts 400 on TSN2

Sunday, Sept. 7

  • 7:55 a.m. ET – Formula One: Italian Grand Prix on TSN1, TSN3, TSN4, TSN5

Okay, the F1 telecasts will centre around two subjects: 1, will Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton behave themselves so that Mercedes can finish first and second in the Grand Prix and, 2, will Sebastian Vettel or Fernando Alonso soon jump ship to McLaren and open up a wholesale exchange of drivers among teams? I don’t have the answers but Ben Edwards and David Coulthard might offer up some tips.

– Over in NASCAR-land, 14 drivers have locked themselves into the Chase, leaving two spots open. So far, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards, A.J. Allmendinger, Aric Almirola, the Busch brothers, Denny Hamlin and Kasey Kahne have won races (meaning they’re in) and Matt Kenseth has qualified on points.

If a first-time race winner scores at Richmond Saturday night, he or she is in. Otherwise, a repeat winner will mean two of the following can make it in on points (but don’t ask for the probabilities as they are far too complicated): Ryan Newman, Greg Biffle, Clint Bowyer and Kyle Larsen.

We’ll know who’s in and who’s out at about 10:30 Saturday night.

– Oh, beginning Jan. 1, 2015, what’s been known for the last seven years as the NASCAR Nationwide Series (I still call it the Busch Series) will become the NASCAR XFINITY Series. NASCAR announced a 10-year deal with XFINITY and its parent company, Comcast, last Wednesday.

Nationwide Insurance, meantime, will still be a large presence in NASCAR. It will sponsor Dale Jr.’s car going forward.

– Here are a couple of leftover items from last week’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

1. As an advance for the weekend, I’d written a cover piece for Toronto Star Wheels on truck series veteran Ron Hornaday Jr. Unfortunately, Hornaday – who was fourth in the points standings going into that race – didn’t run at Old Mosport because Turner-Scott Motorsports, his employer, didn’t send his truck.

Turner and Scott have had a falling-out, as they say, and are suing each other over sponsorship money. They ran one truck – Hornaday’s – out of the company shop and when the accusations started flying they shut it down. He’s out of a ride but worse, 18 other employees were laid off.

Two other Turner-Scott trucks are continuing in the series but those are rentals. Unless peace is made, that team will likely be out of business as of the end of the season – which is a real shame.

Turner-Scott has done a lot for the sport (they dispatched a truck and driver Nelson Piquet Jr. to CTMP last spring to do reconaissance for all the other trucks in the series), plus they run cars in the Nationwide Series.

2. David Garvin, the founder of Camping World, died last Saturday, according to a report in the Bowling Green (Kentucky) Daily News. Warren County police responded to a call at his home after Garvin slipped while working on his roof. The 71-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.

– Before leaving NASCAR, Roger Penske’s people have been sending media a weekly video all year called The Penske Files. Click here for this week’s edition.

– By the way, there’s a fundraiser Sunday morning for Sheena’s Place, a facility that treats eating disorders.

The Grand Prix of Italy will be shown on the big screens at Wegz Stadium Bar at 2100 Rutherford Rd. in Vaughan. Doors open at 7:30 a.m. with the race to start at 8. Tickets are $20 per person and will be available at the door.  The event includes a full buffet breakfast and a chance to win some fabulous  prizes as numerous lucky draws will be held throughout the race.

For more information please contact Tony Marziliano at tmarziliano@rogers.com or 416-220-9900.

– Speaking of F1, the Russian Grand Prix is still on the schedule (boo, hiss) and the buildup to the race in October has started already.

Here is a video of four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel’s impressions of the new circuit at Sochi (click here to watch).

– And Gene Haas announced this week that his Haas F1 Team, which will debut in the FIA Formula 1 World Championship in 2016, has selected Scuderia Ferrari as its technical partner. Besides the engines, both Haas and Ferrari said they are investigating other technical partnerships.

– The 2014 Formula Renault 2.0 ALPS series resumes this weekend at Italy’s Mugello Circuit following a lengthy summer break, one that was used to the maximum by Canadian challenger Luke Chudleigh. The 19-year-old racer from Milton racer suffered a thumb fracture during Round 5 at  Monza back in July so the gap between ALPS events proved to be a silver lining, allowing him adequate time to heal and rehab before returning to open-wheel action this weekend.

Race 1 at Mugello gets under way at 11:10 a.m. EST on Saturday with Race 2 set for  7:30 a.m. EST on Sunday. Both races will be 25 minutes plus one lap in length.
– Credit Suisse has released what they are calling a short, evocative video of the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique 2014 that was held in Monte Carlo in May. You will love this video and I invite you to click here to watch it.
– Bruce Mehlenbacher is one of the great promoters/marketers/PR people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting over the years and here are some of the reasons.
He beats the drums for the Pro Modified Racing Association, the Quick 32 Sportsman Series and the Pro Bike and Sled Series and sends along these photo galleries from last week’s Thunder by the Beach Weekend at the Grand Bend Motorplex.
Pro Modified Racing Association (PMRA)
Quick 32 Sportsman Series
Pro Bike & Sled Series (PBSS)
As Bruce says, great work by the photographers!
– Finally, Yokohama Rally Team driver Antoine L’Estage of St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que., will be shooting for his eighth Rallye Défi victory this weekend, the third of six rounds in the 2014 Canadian Rally Championship. L’Estage and co-driver Alan Ockwell of Toronto have a perfect record so far in 2014, with victories in the  the Perce-Neige and Baie-des-Chaleurs rallies run earlier this season.
Also at Rallye Défi, British driver Martin Rowe will take over as lead driver for the Subaru Rally Team, replacing Pat Richard who has retired because of repetitive brain injury. Pat’s sister Nathalie Richard, a multi-time champion in her own right, will act as co-driver for Rowe.
– NORRIS McDONALD  nmcdonald@thestar.ca

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