Thursday, 1 January 2015

Winter Roundup - Part 1

It may be the off-season for the vast majority of the motorsport world, but that hasn't stopped goings on. Here's a selection of news stories from over the last few weeks:


McLaren Finally makes up it's mind

In what was slowly becoming a saga long enough to rival Lord of the Rings, McLaren Honda finally announced Fernando Alonso as their driver for the 2015. But we already knew that...

Instead,t he focus was on who will be his team mate for this season. Veteran Brit Jenson Button was confirmed as Alonso's partner, on a 'multi-year' deal, with Kevin magnussen being relegated to a third driver roll.

Magnussen will work alonside Stoffel Vandoorne and Oliver Turvey as part of McLaren's test team with Mercedes-aligned Gary Paffett leaving his McLaren testing role after eight years.

Image: McLaren


Jenson Button ties the knot

As if having his McLaren contract wasn't enough, Jenson Button welcomed the new year in by marrying his long-term partner Jessica Michibata in a private ceremony in Hawaii.

The pair confirmed the news on Twitter, posting: "Happy New Year from Mr & Mrs Button!! We're excited to see in the New year with family and loved ones."

Image: Mirror




Loeb returns to Monte

Sebastien Loeb will make a return to the World Rally Championship in 2015, entering the season-opening Monte Carlo Rally.

The Frenchman, a nine-time WRC champion and seven-time Monte Carlo Rally winner will pilot a Citroen DS3 WRC to help the team with the development of the latest homologation of their WRC challenger. Loeb, however, will continue to compete in the WTCC full time.

Image: Red Bull Content Pool


Hayden Paddon gets extended Hyundai role

Hayden Paddon will return to the WRC in 2015 with Hyundai, competing in a minimum of nine events.

Up from the six he contested in 2014, the Kiwi is thought to have turned down an offer from Citroen to remain with the Koren manufacturer. Thierry Neuville will remain the team's only full-time entrant.

Image: Dominik Wilde


Formula E

Montagny fears career could be over after positive cocaine test

Andretti Autosport driver Franck Montagny has revealed why he missed the previous Formula E round in Uruguay - he had tested positive for a cocaine derivative at the Malaysian round.

Speaking to French publication L'Equipe, the former F1 racer said"Auto sport is perhaps over for me".

"After the event I saw the guy who tests signalling me. There, in my head, I knew immediately. I knew it was over.

"I made a mistake, I'm guilty."

Montagny's seat at the next Formula E race in Argentina is expected to be taken by Marco Andretti

Image: Dominik Wilde




Dixon, Kanaan, Kimball all retained by Ganassi

Scott Dixon, Tony Kanaan and Charlie Kimball will once again all line up for Ganassi this season, but long-time backer Target will scale back their involvement to just one car with Kanaan sporting the colours of NTT Data.

Kanaan was originally planned the race the NTT data car in 2014 before the untimely retirement of Dario Franchitti forced a change of plans.

The future of Ganassi's other 2014 IndyCar drivers Ryan Briscoe and Sage Karam are as of yet unknown.

Image: IndyCar Media

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