Last weekend saw a tremendous season opener to the V8 Supercars campaign (a bit of video here if you want a partial spoiler) with Hooniverse favorite Jason Bright walking away from a scary, weekend-ending wreck (video here…Adelaide’s curbing can be your friend or foe). Elsewhere, 25 or so iron-tough drivers and their vehicles took home class wins in SCORE Offroad’s San Felipe 250 (winners), the 2013 champions won again in the Trans Am 2014 opener (winners), 24 Hours of LeMons ended early because of Arctic Circle-esque weather in Texas (winners), and another Sprint Cup driver put himself into the NASCAR chase (winners).
This week’s motorsports weekend guide comes in a little lighter than usual with just four entries, but rest assured that next week’s will be packed to the gills. This weekend, international rally comes to the Western Hemisphere, Trans Am travels a few miles from last weekend’s race for another round, some crapcans tackle the most famous Corkscrew, and NASCAR trudges on out West.
FIA World Rally Championship: Rally Guanajuato Corona (Mexico)
While the rest of the FIA-sanctioned series have been testing and gearing up for upcoming season openers, the WRC moves on to its third round already, returning to Mexico for the first time since 2011. Jari-Matti Latvalla heads to Mexico with an early-season five-point lead over Volkswagen teammate Sebastian Ogier, but it’s still pretty early in the season. Rally Guanajuato’s stages wind up and down through the rocky, dusty mountain roads near Leon, Silao, and Guanajuato, giving a far different atmosphere from the rallies in Europe. The Mexican fans go nuts for offroad racing, so expect some densely packed spectator stages.
Do you like maps? I like maps. Here are maps for each day of the stages, both performance and transit.
Trans Am and SVRA: Homestead-Miami Speedway
After an immense 49-car turnout for the 2014 opener last weekend at Sebring International Raceway, SCCA’s Trans Am series heads just a few miles east to Homestead-Miami Speedway. The back-to-back race weekends in close proximity should also draw a good number of the same SVRA competitors from the Sebring weekend. While it may not be quite the same as classic Trans Am racing, the series has enjoyed a resurgence with fields rivaling the 1980s Trans Am heyday.
Website: Trans Am. SVRA. SVRA event page.
Live coverage: Live timing & scoring on the Trans Am website. SVRA timing available on Race Monitor.
Supporting series: One SVRA sprint Saturday night and another Sunday morning, followed by a 90-minute SVRA endurance race Sunday. Full weekend schedule.
ChumpCar World Series: Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
After opening its season a month ago at Road Atlanta, ChumpCar runs another of America’s iconic tracks, this one at Monterey’s Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. ChumpCar will hold the race concurrently with the Ultimate Street Car Association event there, limiting the Chump race to six hours. This will actually create a pretty hectic paddock on race and tech day, so if you’re racing at Laguna Seca, be sure to read the supplemental regulations so you don’t get left out of the race. With two-hour maximum stints by the Chump rules, this should produce a three-stint sprint and probably a close finish of just a few seconds.
Website: ChumpCar website.
Live coverage: Timing available on the web here or via RaceMonitor. Sometimes, race updates are posted on ChumpCar’s forum or on the blog.
Supporting series: The Ultimate Street Car Association will hold its first pentathlon of non-hooptie competition this year at and near Laguna Seca.
NASCAR: Las Vegas Motor Speedway
The big ‘merican stock cars tackle Round 3 of the season in Vegas. Only the Sprint Cup (top tier) and Nationwide (next rung down) will race the 1.5-mile tri-oval this weekend after sharing the track with the K&N West and NASCAR Mexico series last weekend at Phoenix.
Website: Official site. Live Leaderboard.
Supporting Series: Nationwide. Full weekend schedule here.
Fairly sensible race names this weekend: Boyd Gaming 300 (Nationwide). Kobalt 400 (Sprint Cup).
Live coverage: Sprint Cup on Fox (3 p.m. EST Sunday). Nationwide on ABC (4:15 p.m. EST Saturday). Radio coverage on Performance Racing Network.
[Photo Copyright 2014 Hooniverse/Eric Rood]