02.04.94 TOURING CARS:- Combined qualifying times: 1 G Tarquini Alfa R 1:19.35 2 J Cleland Cavalier 1:19.45 3 P Radisich Mondeo 1:19.69 4 G Simoni Alfa R 1:19.75 5 J Winkelhock BMW 1:20.07 6 W Hoy Toyota 1:20.15 7 A Rouse Mondeo 1:20.16 8 S Soper BMW 1:20.21 9 K Odor Nissan 1:20.40 10 J Allam Cavalier 1:20.58
Second session wet - no change from first session in morning
SAFARI RALLY:- Kenya's Ian Duncan extended his lead to 25 minutes after winning the third leg of the Safari Rally. Duncan, four times the Kenyan rally champion, damaged the suspension on his Toyota after striking an impala during the second section. After rapid repairs he went on to stretch his lead over Japan's Kenjiro Shinozuka in the Misubishi. Britain's Richard Burns slipped to fifth from third after his Subaru was slowed down by a brake failure and dust on the roads.
Leaders after third leg: hrs mins 1 I Duncan Ken Toyota 16:14.00 2 K Shinozuka Jpn M'bishi 16 39.00 3 D Auriol Fr Toyota 17 09.00 4 P Njiru Ken Subaru 18.24.00 5 R Burns GB Subaru 18.32.00 6 R Stohl Aut Audi 19.54.00CIRCUIT OF IRELAND RALLY:- Austin McHale is out of the Circuit of Ireland Rally after smashing the steering rack of his Toyota Celica in a ditch. Many drivers slid off in thick snow and leader Stephen Finlay clipped the side of an Escort in his Cosworth but emerged unscathed.
03.04.94 SAFARI RALLY, Nairobi Result after 3,500 kms: hrs mins 1 I Duncan Ken Toyota 20:49.00 2 K Shinozuka Jpn M'bishi 21:14.00 3 D Auriol Fr Toyota 21:59.00 4 P Njiru Ken Subaru 23:30.00 5 R Burns GB Subaru 23:40.00 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS (after three rounds) 1 J Kankkunen Fin Toyota 35 2 D Auriol Fr Toyota 25 3 M Biasion It Ford 22 = C Sainz Sp Subaru 22 5 F Delecour Fr Ford 20 = I Duncan Ken Toyota 20Ian Duncan, driving a Toyota, became the first Kenyan for 12 years to win the Safari rally. He recovered from a disastrous first day to win by 25 minutes from Kenjiro Shinozuka in a Mitsubishi and move to joint fifth in the drivers' Championship. Didier Auriol was forced to settle for third in his first Safari after his Toyota developed shock absorber trouble on the last day. Briton Richard Burns took fourth place in his Group N showroom specification Subaru.
CIRCUIT OF IRELAND RALLY:- Stephan Finlay in a Cosworth leads the Circuit of Ireland Rally by 7 mins, 25 secs from Frank Meagher at the end of SS25.
04.04.94TOURING CARS:- Italian Gabriele Tarquini produced a determined display to win the opening round of the 1994 British Championship at Thruxton. He led for all except the first few yards of the race after starting from pole and crossed the line a second clear of his rivals. Paul Radisich was fastest off the grid but was quickly passed by Tarquini and John Cleland and later spun down the order. Cleland took second place ahead of Giampiero Simoni, who later dropped to 11th after a 25-second penalty.
Result from Thruxton after 28 laps: mins secs 1 G Tarquini Alfa Romeo 27:19.12 2 J Cleland Vauxhall Cav. @ 0.56 3 J Winkelhock BMW 318i @ 15.26 4 S Soper BMW 318i @ 17.56 5 W Hoy Toyota Carina @ 17.91 6 A Menu Renault Laguna @ 21.22 7 P Watts Peugeot 405 @ 29.26 8 D Leslie Mazda Xedos @ 32.85 9 K Odor Nissan Primera @ 33.45 10 T Harvey Renault Laguna @ 36.40* G Simoni finished 3rd but dropped to 11th after 25-second penalty
CIRCUIT OF IRELAND:- Stephan Finlay in a Cosworth has won the Circuit of Ireland rally.
06.04.94F1:- Eddie Irvine has had his one-race ban from Formula One tripled after an FIA appeal hearing in France. The Irish Jordan-Hart driver was initially banned from competing in the Pacific Grand Prix and fined œ7,500 for his involvement in a pile-up during the Brazilian race. The fine was lifted, but he will now miss both the San Marino and Monaco Grands Prix as well. In a statement the FIA said the board was satisfied Irvine had caused an unavoidable collision.
Eddie Irvine's team boss Eddie Jordan said the Ulsterman had been left "shattered" by the decision to increase his Formula One ban. After seeing the FIA triple the initial one-race ban following the Brazilian Grand Prix pile-up Jordan said: "Eddie thought he was going to have a fair hearing. We thought a one-race ban was very hard which is why we supported his appeal. This decision is crucifying both Eddie and his team." He added: "This has left him completely shattered."
INDYCAR:- IndyCar champion Nigel Mansell was the fastest of 20 drivers who took part in the first two days of open testing at the Phoenix Raceway. Mansell, who was injured at the Phoenix oval in Arizona last year, recorded a lap of 20.316 seconds in his Lola Ford-Cosworth. Mansell and four other drivers were all unofficially under the track record of 20.833 seconds. Official practice and qualifying for Sunday's race, the second round of the 16-race IndyCar series, begins on Friday.
08.04.94RENAULT RALLY:- Lanark's Robbie Head leads an entry of over 100 drivers for Saturday's ten-stage Anderson Cars Renault Rally at Aberdeen. Murray Grierson, David Gillanders and Raymond Munro are also among the favourites, with Chris Mellors heading the English challenge despite a cracked rib.
F3:- Brazilian Marcos Gueiros smashed 0.75 seconds off the Donington Park lap record duing testing for Sunday's second round of the British Formula Three Championship. He covered the 2.5 mile circuit in 1 min 30.39 secs in his Vauxhall.
RALLYING:- Francois Delecour will miss next month's Tour of Corsica Rally after suffering ankle and facial injuries in a car crash in France.
09.04.94INDYCAR:- IndyCar champion Nigel Mansell was hampered by turbo trouble as he finished third in unofficial practice for Sunday's Phoenix Race. Mansell, in a Lola Ford Cosworth, came home behind Brazilian duo Emerson Fittipaldi and Raul Boesel. The Briton had turbo boost problems and was unable to improve on his morning times, when he produced his fastest lap of 20.699 seconds. "I can't honestly tell you I'm comfortable here," said Mansell, who was injured here last year after crashing heavily in practice.
RENAULT RALLY:- Donald Milne won the Anderson Cars Renault Rally at Aberdeen, which had to be shortened to seven stages because of snow. He brought his MG Metro to the finish with 22 secs to spare over runner-up David Gillanders.
F3:- Denmark's Jan Magnussen slashed a second off the Donington Park lap record to claim pole for Sunday's British F3 Championship race. He clocked 1 min 30.15 secs in his Dallara Mugen, with Luiz Garcia (1:30.50) second fastest.
10.04.94 INDYCAR Saturday qualifying times for the Phoenix race in Arizona mph 1 P Tracy Can Penske Chev 176.266 2 J Vill'uve Can Rey'rd Ford 176.110 3 N Mansell GB Lola Ford 175.478 4 M Andretti US Lola Ford 174.932 5 R Boesel Brz Lola Ford 173.357 6 E Fit'paldi Brz Penske Chev 173.356 7 R Gordon US Lola Ford 173.113 8 T Fabi It Rey'rd Ford 172.355 9 A Unser jr US Penske Ilm 172.342 10 S Goodyear Can Lola Ford 172.303
Nigel Mansell spun and hit rookie Jacques Villeneuve with less than five minutes of practice remaining. The IndyCar champion, who missed last year's race after crashing in practice, was not hurt and starts Sunday's race in third place. He slowed in the third turn on the one-mile oval and appeared to lose control on the fourth turn. He spun towards a wall and hit Villeneuve. Paul Tracy is on pole in the 28-car field with Villeneuve second. Mansell is likely to use his Lola Ford back-up car for the race.
F3:- Denmark's Jan Magnussen drove his way to a comfortable British F3 Championship maiden victory after leading throughout the 20 lap race at Donington Park. His Paul Stewart Racing Dallara Mugen team mate Dario Franchitti did not fare so well finishing third behind Brazillian Luiz Garcia. Franchitti jointly leads the F3 series with Magnussen.
JAPANESE F3000:- Britain's Andrew Gilbert-Scott won the second round of the Japanese F3000 Championship at Fuji.
11.04.94F1:- Japan's Aguri Suzuki will replace suspended driver Eddie Irvine in the Jordan Formula One team at the Pacific Grand Prix in Japan. Irvine was handed a three race ban after appealing against an earlier one race ban for dangerous driving in Brazil three weeks ago. Suzuki, 33, finished third at his home Grand Prix in 1990 and Jordan have signed up F3 champion Kelvin Birt as additional cover, with an option on his services until 1997. The team have not yet decided who will replace Irvine in other races.
INDYCARS:- Britain's Nigel Mansell took third place behind Emerson Fittipaldi after a dramatic race interrupted by a series of accidents. He led for 18 laps before stalling his engine in the pits after Willy Ribbs crashed and was one lap down when the race re-started. A multi-car collision later took out then leader Paul Tracy and Mario Andretti and son Michael exited on the 166th lap. The race resumed on lap 175 and Fittipaldi went clear to win from teammate Al Unser junior.
Final Result of Slick 50 race at Phoneix International Raceway: 1 E Fit'paldi Brz Penske Ilmor 2 A Unser jr US Penske Ilmor 3 N Mansell GB Lola Ford 4 S Johansson Swe Penske Ilmor 5 J Vasser US Reynard Ford 6 M Groff US Lola Honda 7 R Gordon US Lola Ford 8 R Boesel Brz Lola Ford 9 S Sharp US Lola Ford 10 A Fernandez Mex Reynard Ilmor
GERMAN TOURING CARS:- Alessandro Nannini drove his way to victory in the opening two rounds of the German Touring Car Championship. Nannini's Alfa Romeo beat Mercedes driver Roland Asch into second place in both races in Belgium.
13.04.94F1: JOHN WATSON PREVIEWS THE PACIFIC GRAND PRIX
This is the one Grand Prix where so much is difficult to predict as the Tanaka International Circuit is a totally unknown prospect. TI held its inaugural event in November 1990 and has never before staged an international race let alone host a full-blown WC event. Built by motorsport enthusiast Hajame Tanaka, the 2.3 mile circuit has only been used by Japanese F3 drivers and Touring Cars. One thing is certain, the layout dictates that overtaking will be the exception rather than the rule.
Tanaka International follows the trend among the newer circuits in that a lot of track is compressed into a relatively small area. The length of the main straight is minimal and the many corners, mostly slow, have been named after some of the great racing drivers of the past, Stirling Moss among them. The current lap record was set at a F3 event with a time of 1:27.02, though I expect F1 cars to cut that by 15 seconds. We will get an accurate idea when practice gets underway on Thursday.
Roland Ratzenberger will be the only driver who can claim to have a little local knowledge when practice begins at TI. The Simtek Ford driver has raced a Tuuring Car once before so in my opinion he will gain no advanatge whatsoever over his competitors. It will be speculative to say who copes best over 83 laps, though I expect the outcome to be much the same as in Brazil three weeks ago. I make Michael Schumacher the race favourite with Williams pair Ayrton Senna and Damon Hill not far behind.
One change I see from Brazil will be the importance of qualifying times and the resulting starting grid positions for Sunday's GP. With so few opportunites to overtake, the grid will give a good indication of what to expect from the eventual results. Beside the three main challengers, the midfield pack this weekend will comprise as many as seven teams. McLaren, Jordan, Ferrari, Minardi, the second Benetton, Tyrrell and Footwork will all feel they have a chance of striking into the points.
Ayrton Senna and Damon Hill have been busy testing in southern Spain trying to iron out the shortcomings in their new FW 16 chassis. Tanaka International is a low speed circuit so nobody can be sure what bearing this will have on fuel and tyre tactics for the race. The strategy the teams will adopt will have to be carefuly calculated in a time-loss/time-gain equation. Team strategists will be busy. Even the weather is ever-changing at Aida and the track was covered in two inches of snow one week ago.
There are two new faces racing this Sunday, Nicola Larini and Eddie Irvine replacement Aguri Suzuki. Larini steps in for the injured Jean Alesi. He is the official test driver at Ferrari and can be relied upon as back-up to Gerhard Berger. Suzuki may find the going not quite so easy. He has not driven a GP car since Australia though the Jordan is user-friendly. Suzuki is the promoters' dream stand-in for Irvine as he will stimulate last-minute support from Japanese fans looking for success.
One aspect of this Grand Prix that is less than satisfactory from a team point of view is access to the circuit at Aida. The hotels are some distance from the track and the officials and media are all being bussed in. To my knowledge, teams have never had to do this before and if the throngs of fans turn up, there are some obvious practical difficulties just waiting to crop up. All I can say is that I hope we can make it to the Grand Prix on time!
14.04.94 F1: THE PACIFIC GRAND PRIX Thursday testing times: mins secs 1 M Schumacher Ger Benetton 1:11.307 2 A Senna Brz Williams 1:12.572 3 D Hill GB Williams 1:12.601 4 M Hakkinen Fin McLaren 1:13.169 5 J Verstappen Hol Benetton 1:13.703 6 C Fittipaldi Brz Footwork 1:13.727 7 G Berger Aut Ferrari 1:13.773 8 H Frentzen Ger Sauber 1:13.867 9 E Comas Fr Larrousse 1:13.908 10 K Wendlinger Aut Sauber 1:14.335 11 N Larini It Ferrari 1:14.343 12 M Brundle GB McLaren 1:14.371 13 R Bar'chello Brz Jordan 1:14.525 14 G Morbidelli It Footwork 1:14.538 15 O Panis Fr Ligier 1:14.676 16 J Herbert GB Lotus 1:15.029 17 M Alboreto It Minardi 1:15.148 18 M Blundell GB Tyrrell 1:15.256 19 U Katayama Jpn Tyrrell 1:15.450 20 E Bernard Fr Ligier 1:15.577 21 O Beretta Mon Larrousse 1:15.647 22 A Suzuki Jpn Jordan 1:15.885 23 D Brabham Aus Simtek 1:16.105 24 P Lamy Por Lotus 1:16.796 25 P Martini It Minardi 1:17.523 26 B Gachot Bel Pacific 1:18.027 27 R Rat'berger Aut Simtek 1:18.047 28 P Belmondo Fr Pacific 1:20.114
TOURING CARS:- Gabriele Tarquini eclipsed the official lap record in testing for Sunday's Touring Car race at Brands Hatch with a lap of 46.42 secs in his Alfa Romeo. Teammate Giampiero Simoni (46.43) was second fastest, ahead of leading Briton Tim Harvey (47.00).
15.04.94 F1: THE PACIFIC GRAND PRIX Friday's qualifying session: mins secs 1 A Senna Brz Williams 1:10.218 2 M Schumacher Ger Benetton 1:10.440 3 D Hill GB Williams 1:10.771 4 M Hakkinen Fin McLaren 1:11.683 5 G Berger Aut Ferrari 1:11.744 6 M Brundle GB McLaren 1:12.351 7 N Larini It Ferrari 1:12.372 8 R Bar'chello Brz Jordan 1:12.409 9 J Verstappen Hol Benetton 1:12.554 10 H Frentzen Ger Sauber 1:12.686 11 G Morbidelli It Footwork 1:12.866 12 M Blundell GB Tyrrell 1:13.013 = U Katayama Jpn Tyrrell 1:13.013 14 E Comas Fr Larrousse 1:13.111 15 C Fittipaldi Brz Footwork 1:13.169 16 M Alboreto It Minardi 1:13.342 17 P Martini It Minardi 1:13.529 18 E Bernard Fr Ligier 1:13.613 19 K Wendlinger Aut Sauber 1:13.855 20 A Suzuki Jpn Jordan 1:14.036 21 O Beretta Mon Larrousse 1:14.101 22 O Panis Fr Ligier 1:14.106 23 J Herbert GB Lotus 1:14.538 24 P Lamy Por Lotus 1:14.657 25 D Brabham Aus Simtek 1:14.946 26 B Gachot Bel Pacific 1:16.927 27 P Belmondo Fr Pacific 1:18.671
Brazilian Ayrton Senna overcame a spirited challenge from Michael Schumacher to claim provisional pole for Sunday's race in Japan. Senna, in a Williams, eclipsed Schumacher by 0.222 seconds, with teammate Damon Hill in third spot. Nearly all drivers said conditions on the slow track had improved but some still complained that it was difficult to find grip. Hill said that he and Senna had benefited from Williams' improved chassis settings which greatly improves handling.
Britain's Damon Hill was full of optimism after setting the third fastest time in Friday's first official practice session. "I thought that on the last few runs, it was all coming together at last," said Hill, whose teammate Ayrton Senna took provisional pole. "There is something that has been handicapping the car's handling, but now I think we're on to it." Ferrari driver Jean Alesi will also miss the San Marino Grand Prix on May 1 because of back injuries suffered in a testing crash.
RALLYING:- Jimmy McRae will use the MSD Vauxhall Calibra Turbo in the next round of the Mobil 1 Top Gear series, the Carlisle-based Pirelli International on April 23 and 24.
16.04.94 F1: THE PACIFIC GRAND PRIX Final qualifying times: mins secs 1 A Senna Brz Williams 1:10.218 2 M Schumacher Ger Benetton 1:10.440 3 D Hill GB Williams 1:10.771 4 M Hakkinen Fin McLaren 1:11.683 5 G Berger Aut Ferrari 1:11.744 6 M Brundle GB McLaren 1:12.351 7 N Larini It Ferrari 1:12.372 8 R Bar'chello Brz Jordan 1:12.409 9 C Fittipaldi Brz Footwork 1:12.444 10 J Verstappen Hol Benetton 1:12.554 11 H Frentzen Ger Sauber 1:12.686 12 M Blundell GB Tyrrell 1:12.751 13 G Morbidelli It Footwork 1:12.866 14 U Katayama Jpn Tyrrell 1:13.013 15 M Alboreto It Minardi 1:13.016 16 E Comas Fr Larrousse 1:13.111 17 P Martini It Minardi 1:13.529 18 E Bernard Fr Ligier 1:13.613 19 K Wendlinger Aut Sauber 1:13.855 20 A Suzuki Jpn Jordan 1:13.932 21 O Beretta Mon Larrousse 1:14.101 22 O Panis Fr Ligier 1:14.106 23 J Herbert GB Lotus 1:14.424 24 P Lamy Por Lotus 1:14.657 25 D Brabham Aus Simtek 1:14.748 26 R Rat'berger Aut Simtek 1:16.356 NON-QUALIFIERS 26 B Gachot Bel Pacific 1:16.927 27 P Belmondo Fr Pacific 1:17.450
Brazilian Ayrton Senna secured the 64th pole of his Grand Prix career despite failing to improve his lap time in final practice. Hot weather made track conditions much slower at the TI circuit and Senna's time of 1 min 10.218 secs, set on Friday, was untouchable. Senna and Williams teammate Damon Hill, who will start third on the grid, were among several drivers to spin during the session. "I don't know what happened. It made me feel silly and stupid," Senna said afterwards.
Ayrton Senna predicted a tough tactical battle in Sunday's 83-lap race in southern Japan after taking pole position in his Williams. "The race is going to be very competitive and it will be a matter of fine tuning our cars for us. I expect it to be tight and close and a lot will depend on race strategy," Senna commented. Michael Schumacher will be alongside him on the front row. "It will be very hard to overtake. I hope everyone looks very carefully in their mirrors," he said.
Damon Hill suffered a rare spin as his bid to earn a front row place for Sunday's race was frustrated by hot weather in Japan. "I've got to say I am a bit disappointed. After all, it's the first time I have spun for a while and I really don't know why. But I know I couldn't have done much better in the circumstances anyway," he said. "I had lost all my morning session with transmission so I was just frustrated really that I couldn't do more laps than I did."
INDYCAR:- Friday's leading qualifying times for the Toyota Grand Prix at Long Beach: mph 1 N Mansell GB Lola Ford 107.919 2 E Fit'paldi Brz Penske Ilm 107.846 3 A Unser jr US Penske Ilm 106.827 4 R Gordon US Lola Ford 106.629 5 M Andretti US Reynard F 106.614 6 S Johansson Swe Penske Ilm 106.480 7 P Tracy Can Penske Ilm 106.278 8 J Vil'neuve Can Reynard F 106.241 9 M Andretti US Lola Ford 106.087 10 S Sharp US Lola Ford 105.272
Nigel Mansell produced a flying lap in the closing stages of practice to snatch provisional pole for Sunday's Toyota Grand Prix. The reigning Indy champion had been outpaced by Emerson Fittipaldi until he produced a 53.040 secs lap around the 2.56km street circuit. "I honestly felt I could have done 51-second laps," said Mansell, who has yet to win a race this season. "We're looking at the car under a microscope to stay in front of Emerson. It's going to be tough."
TOURING CARS:- Gabriele Tarquini, in an Alfa Romeo, is on pole for Sunday's Auto Trader British Touring Car race at Brands Hatch. He shares the front grid with teammate Giampiero Simoni after the pair dominated the two practice sessions. Tim Harvey is third.
17.04.94 F1: THE PACIFIC GRAND PRIX Full result after 83 laps:hrs:mins.secs 1 M Schumacher Ger Benetton 1:46.164 2 G Berger It Ferrari @ 1.153 3 R B'chello Brz Jordan 82 laps 4 C Fittipaldi Brz Footwork 82 laps 5 H Frentzen Ger Sauber 82 laps 6 E Comas Fr Larrousse 80 laps 7 J Herbert GB Lotus 80 laps 8 P Lamy Por Lotus 79 laps 9 O Panis Fr Ligier 78 laps 10 E Bernard Fr Ligier 78 laps 11 R Rat'berger Aut Simtek 78 laps Drivers Points following the Pacific GP: 1 M Schumacher Ger 20 2 B Bar'chello Brz 7 3 D Hill GB 6 = G Berger Aut 6 5 J Alesi Fr 4 6 C Fittipaldi Brz 3 7 U Katayama Jpn 2 = H Frentzen Ger 2 9 E Comas Fr 1 = K Wendlinger Aut 1 Constructors Championship 1 Benetton Ford 20 points 2 Ferrari 10 3 Jordan Hart 7 4 Williams Renault 6 5 Footwork Ford 3 = Sauber Mercedes 3 7 Tyrrell Yamaha 2 8 Larrousse Ford 1
Germany's Michael Schumacher made it two wins out of two with another dominant display in the Benetton. He seized the lead as Ayrton Senna went off at the first corner and never looked like being headed as he powered away from his rivals. The 25-year-old was out on his own when he made his first pit-stop and was able to cruise through the rest of the 83-lap race. Engine problems put paid to Damon Hill and Martin Brundle, giving the other podium finishes to Gerhard Berger and Rubens Barrichello.
Michael Schumacher paid tribute to a "fantastic team effort" after following up his win in Brazil with a start to finish triumph. "These two wins - I wouldn't have have believed it if anybody had told me this before the season. After the start, the race went very well. I wasn't pushed very hard by anybody so I could take it easy with the car and the tyres. "This is a fantastic team effort. They have done a brilliant job," the German commented.
Austrian Gerhard Berger showed the value of experience as he brought his Ferrari home in second place behind Michael Schumacher. He inherited second after Damon Hill's retirement and kept his cool despite losing the place to Rubens Barrichello for a few laps. Berger never had Schumacher in his sights but was the only man on the same lap at the end. He said: "There was no way of going quicker with our car at the moment. But I am very happy for the team, who are working very hard."
Rubens Barrichello showed why many rate him as a potential champion of the future by finishing third to earn his first podium appearance. The young Brazilian's Jordan-Hart performed superbly and he held second spot until a poor pit-stop in the later stages of the race. "I am really pleased for myself and the team," he said. "Our tactics worked quite well. We raced on B (compound tyres) for the first two parts of the race and went onto C for the last run."
Damon Hill missed out on another healthy points haul when his car made an abrupt exit on lap 49 when he was lying in second place. The Briton found himself third after the start but dropped back several places after momentarily sliding off on the fourth lap. He surged through the field after his first pit-stop on lap 18 but could make little impression on runaway leader Michael Schumacher. Hill was clear of the rest when his Williams let him down. "I think it was a gearbox problem," he said.
Martin Brundle was cruelly robbed of a top-three finish by a blocked radiator after a fighting drive in the new McLaren-Peugeot. He justified the team's faith in his ability by moving into fourth early on before his first pit-stop cost him a couple of places. He was lapped by winner Michael Schumacher but followed him through to slip past Christian Fittipaldi. Brundle got up into third spot and was closing on Gerhard Berger when the radiator problem caused his engine to overheat and he retired.
Brazilian ace Ayrton Senna suffered frustration as he spun out of the race at the first corner in his Williams-Renault. The three-times world champion began from a record 64th pole but his car was nudged from behind by Mika Hakkinen's McLaren. "It was very irresponsible driving and should not be allowed," said Senna, whose car was then hit by the Ferrari of Nicola Larini. Both went out and Mark Blundell also retired after a spin at the same corner.
INDYCARS:- Leading qualifiers for Sunday's Toyota Grand Prix at Long Beach: mph 1 P Tracy Can Penske Ilm 108.450 2 A Unser jr US Penske Ilm 108.407 3 E Fit'paldi Brz Penske Ilm 108.308 4 N Mansell GB Lola Ford 108.173 5 R Gordon US Lola Ford 108.004 6 M Andretti US Reynard F 106.837 7 R Boesel Brz Lola Ford 106.833 8 M Gugelmin Brz Reynard F 106.660 9 M Andretti US Lola Ford 106.614 10 S Johansson Swe Penske-Ilm 106.480
Canadian Paul Tracy smashed Nigel Mansell's lap record as Penskes filled the first three places in qualifying for the Toyota GP. He produced a lap of 52.780 secs at a speed of 108.450 mph to take the fifth pole of his career. Al Unser junior and Emerson Fittipaldi also outpaced Mansell, who dropped to fourth on the grid despite improving Friday's time. "It was what we expected. I thought the Penske team had something else up their sleeves," Mansell said.
TOURING CARS:- Gabriele Tarquini continued his domination of the Auto Trader British Touring Car Championship by winning both races at Brands Hatch. The Italian was challenged in the early stages of the first race by Tim Harvey and Alain Menu. But Harvey crashed out and Menu suffered a puncture leaving Tarquini to come home ahead of teammate Giampiero Simoni. He completed a hat-trick of 1994 wins in the second race by five secs from John Cleland.
Nigel Smith took a win, a second place and the points lead in the Total Cup for Privateers in rounds two and three of the British Touring Car Championship.
18.04.94INDYCARS:- Al Unser Junior romped to his fifth Long Beach victory as Nigel Mansell was hit by tyre trouble. Unser shrugged off a penalty for leaving the pits too fast to come home half a lap clear at an average race speed of 99.283 mph. Mansell did superbly to finish second after a frightening blow-out shredded one of the rear tyres on his Lola Ford on lap 68. He picked up three places after the incident to take the runners-up spot ahead of Robbie Gordon.
Nigel Mansell was a relieved man after making it safely to the finish in second place after a tyre blow-out during the race. "I had an exciting day. It was a big wake-up call when the rear tyre blew," the reigning champion said. "I was almost spinning at 180 or 190 mph. Running on three wheels, I didn't enjoy it," he added. Mansell now lies third in the Indy standings with 35 points, just two behind race winner Al Unser junior and joint leader Emerson Fittipaldi.
Final positions from Sunday's Toyota Grand Prix at Long Beach: laps 1 A Unser Jr US Penske Ilmor 105 2 N Mansell GB Lola Ford 105 3 R Gordon US Lola Ford 105 4 R Boesel Brz Lola Ford 104 5 Ma Andretti US Reynard Ford 104 6 Mi Andretti US Lola Ford 104 7 M Gugelmin Brz Reynard Ford 104 8 A Fernandez Mex Reynard Ilmor 104 9 T Fabi Ita Reynard Ilmor 104 10 S Johansson Swe Penske Ilmor 102INDY LIGHTS:- England's Steve Robertson won the Long Beach round of the Firestone Indy Lights Championship. It was his second straight win on the course and the fourth victory of his career. Robertson moved into the lead ahead of Eddie Lawson and stayed ahead for the rest of the race. He averaged 76.482 miles per hour, beating runner-up Greg Moore of Canada by 1.851 seconds.
20.04.94 - SPORTSCARSDerek Bell is to drive in the Le Mans 24 hours race in a bid to equal Belgian Jacky Ickx's record six wins. Bell has contested the French classic 23 times, winning in 1975 in a Gulf Ford and in 1981, 1982, 1986, and 1987 in factory Porsches. His return this year will be in an open cockpit Porsche Spyder with fellow Briton Robin Donovan and Germany's Juergen Lassig. "I just want to win once more," said Bell. "I am not out to beat Jacky's record."
21.04.94 - F1Italian Andrea de Cesaris will drive for the Sasol Jordan team at the forthcoming San Marino and Monaco Grands Prix. He will replace Irishman Eddie Irvine, who is still subject to a three-race suspension. "Andrea has always been quick and did a very good job when he drove for the team in it's debut GP season," said boss Eddie Jordan. "He has scored more points for us than any other driver so far, and is very popular with the guys here and all our sponsors."
Alain Prost has signed with French car manufacturer Renault but will not be making a comeback in the driving seat. The four-times Formula One world champion will be involved in developing the company's cars and some promotional work. Prost won nine Grands Prix for Renault between 1981 and 1983.
22.04.94TOURING CARS:- Flying Scotsman John Cleland is aiming to end the dominance of Alfa Romeo when the touring cars descend on Snetterton on May 2. The Vauxhall ace has had two second places and a third this season, with ex-Grand Prix star Gabriele Tarquini winning all three races. Cleland said: "Snetterton is a circuit that should suit my Vauxhall and it is my aim to upset the Alfa apple cart." Andy Rouse, currently third in his Ford Mondeo is another one to watch along with the strong Toyota team.
F3:- Jan Magnussen and Dario Franchitti head the field for Sunday's British Formula Three Championship round at Brands Hatch. The Paul Stewart Racing teammates have one win apiece so far this season with Scott Lakin currently heading the chasing group.
23.04.94 - PIRELLI INTERNATIONAL RALLY Positions after 7 stages: hrs min s 1 M Wilson Ford Escort 1.29.31 2 S Finlay Ford Escort 1.31.56 3 J Milner Ford Escort 1.34.06 4 A McHale Toyota Celica 1.34.31 5 J McRae Vaux Calibra 1.35.19 6 D Watson-C Ford Escort 1.36.33 7 S Petch Ford Escort 1.37.11 8 P Dyas Ford Escort 1.37.14 9 B Arntsenn Opel Astra 1.37.47 10 M Rowe Ford Escort 1.37.55 24.04.94F3:- Jan Magnussen opened up a 17 point lead in the British Championship with a win and fourth place finish in the two races at Brands Hatch. The Dane was a comfortable winner in the first race, starting from pole while Belgian Vincent Radermecker won the second. Scotsman Dario Franchitti failed to score in either race.
PIRELLI INTERNATIONAL RALLY Result after 9 stages: hrs min s 1 M Wilson Ford Escort 1.56.14 2 S Finlay Ford Escort 1.58.59 3 J Milner Ford Escort 2.02.00 4 A McHale Toyota Celica 2.02.00 5 J McRae Vaux Calibra 2.02.25 6 M Rowe Ford Escort 2.05.30 7 S Petch Ford Escort 2.06.00 8 D Watson-C Ford Escort 2.06.03 9 B Arntsenn Opel Astra 2.06.26 10 P Dyas Ford Escort 2.06.56
Malcolm Wilson dominated the second round of the Championship by the setting the fastest time on all nine forest special stages. The Cumbrian driver won the Pirelli International rally in his Escort Cosworth by 2 mins 45 secs from teammate and first round winner Stephen Finlay. Driffield's Jonny Milner was third and won the Group N showroom specification category in an Escort. Norway's Bruno Arntsen won the two-wheel drive Formula 2 category in his Opel Astra.
26.04.94 - SWISS F3Opel's Ruedi Schurter recorded a narrow victory over Fiat ace Jo Zeller in the 16-lap race at Magny-Cours in the Swiss F3 series. The wining margin was just four tenths of a second as Opel team mate Yvan Berset came third.
27.04.94F1: JOHN WATSON PREVIEWS THE SAN MARINO GRAND PRIX
On current form, Benetton-Ford must be favourites at Imola with a well-oiled team effort making winning the rule rather than the exception. Benetton's competitive position could be strengthened if JJ Lehto defies a broken neck and makes his first GP appearance of the year. Test driver Jos Verstappen's two GPs provided him with a great deal of experience but no points. Benetton need Lehto to provide stronger support for Michael Schumacher as well as taking points from their championship rivals.
Michael Schumacher is keeping a very open mind about the chances of a third consecutive win but in reality his confidence is sky high. He knows he is the heir apparent to the drivers' championship and knows principal rival Ayrton Senna recognises that fact as well. Here are two of the toughest F1 competitors ever - one using youth and unlimited potential against experience and a psyche which cannot at any time accept defeat. Schumacher is currently smiling, whereas Senna wishes he was.
The last time a Williams-Renualt driver stood on the winner's podium was at last September's Italian GP when Damon Hill was victorious. Since then, Ford-engined cars have dominated so this weekend at Imola will undoubtedly see a huge effort by the Williams-Renault team. The dream team of Williams, Renault and Ayrton Senna has been far from a dream so far this season. But Senna's single-mindedness has got to reap dividends very soon and the nature of the Imola circuit means this could be his weekend.
Britain's Damon Hill is picking up and benefitting from the insights gained as a result of having Ayrton Senna as his Williams team-mate. He is the least experienced of the potential winners this weekend and the learning curve he is on within Senna's shadow is still vertical. Recognising Senna's unique position in any team at any time is like an Open University course in itself. He is the best tutor in the world. Learn from him, use those lessons well and on occasions you will win.
For the majority of spectators this weekend, the battle between Benetton and Williams will be of no interest whatsoever. Their eyes will be focused on their beloved Ferrari, though tinged with disappointment about the absence of Jean Alesi. At Imola, I would not be surprised to see a Ferrari on the front row of the grid, although I would be surprised to see one win the race. From a technical point of view, Ferrari will be under scrutiny by all the other Formula One teams.
McLaren-Peugeot have progressed since the start of the season and their aim at Imola will be for both cars to finish in the points. Winning is something they will be looking at towards the middle of of the season. Mika Hakkinen will be as irrepressible as ever and Martin Brundle is rapidly growing into the mould of a McLaren driver. To the layman, the way McLaren operate looks no different than any other team, but they only judge success by their own high standards.
Behind the four big names are a further four teams looking to plunder points this weekend. Jordan-Hart are third in the constructors' championship with Rubens Barrichello in second place in the driver's standings. Barrichello's team-mate for the next two GPs will be the 'youthful' veteran Andrea de Cesaris. Footwork-Ford look stronger race by race, Sauber should confirm their potential and Tyrrell are renowned finishers so the mid-field at Imola looks very competitive.
The character of the 3.1-mile circuit can be expressed very simply - horsepower. But equally, due to the amount of full throttle operation, mechanical reliability is tested at Imola more than any other circuit in the year. Being fast on the straights is only one part of the San Marino GP. Ultimately, it is the ability to put together 61 consistent laps. With refuelling and tyre changes, predicting the outcome is always speculative, to be sure. However, expect joy from the podium.
TOURING CARS:- Wednesday testing times at Snetterton: mins secs 1 P Radisich Ford Mondeo 1:13.04 2 A Rouse Ford Mondeo 1:13.33 3 A Menu Renault Laguna 1:13.74 4 G Tarquini Alfa Romeo 1:13.77 5 P Watts Peugeot 405 1:14.05 6 T Harvey Renault Laguna 1:14.13 7 K O'dor Nissan Primera 1:14.17 8 E O'Brien Peugeot 405 1:14.28 9 G Simoni Alfa Romeo 1:14.44 10 J Cleland Vaux Cavalier 1:14.49 28.04.94 - RALLYINGBritain's Malcolm Wilson replaces injured Frenchman Francois Delecour in the world championship Acropolis Rally at the end of May. Wilson will join regular Ford works driver Miki Biasion of Italy and new signing Ari Vatanen in a three-car assault on the Greek event. Monte Carlo Rally winner Delecour is still recovering from injuries suffered in a road accident in France three weeks ago.
29.04.94 - F1: THE SAN MARINO GRAND PRIXBrazil's Rubens Barrichello crashed his Jordan at 125mph during practice for Sunday's F1 Grand Prix. Barrichello, currently second in the drivers' championship, lost control at the entry to the final high speed chicane of the course. He hit a kerb, lifted off the ground and flew over the safety barrier before clipping a wall and rolling over. The practice session was halted as medics attended Barrichello, who was seen waving from the cockpit.
Friday's practice times: mins secs 1 A Senna Brz Williams 1:21.548 2 M Schumacher Ger Benetton 1:22.013 3 G Berger Aut Ferrari 1:22.113 4 JJ Lehto Fin Benetton 1:22.717 5 N Larini It Ferrari 1:22.841 6 H Frentzen Ger Sauber 1:22.119 7 D Hill GB Williams 1:23.199 8 M Hakkinen Fin McLaren 1:23.611 9 G Morbidelli It Footwork 1:23.663 10 M Blundell GB Tyrrell 1:23.703 11 K Wendlinger Aut Sauber 1:23.788 12 U Katayama Jpn Tyrrell 1:24.000 13 P Martini It Minardi 1:24.078 14 M Alboreto It Minardi 1:24.276 15 M Brundle GB McLaren 1:24.443 16 C Fittipaldi Br Arrows 1:24.653 17 E Bernard Fr Ligier 1:24.678 18 O Panis Fr Ligiers 1:24.996 19 J Herbert GB Lotus 1:25.114 20 A De Cesaris It Jordan 1:25.234 21 E Comas Fr Larrousse 1:26.295 22 P Lamy Por Lotus 1:26.453 23 O Beretta Mon Larrousse 1:27.179 24 D Brabham Aus Simtek 1:27.607 25 R Rat'berger Aut Simtek 1:27.657 26 B Gachot Bel Pacific 1:27.732 27 P Belmondo Fr Pacific 1:28.361 28 R Ba'chello Br Jordan 14.323 30.04.94 - F1:- SAN MARINO GP: ROLAND RATZENBERGERAustrian Roland Ratzenberger died from injuries suffered in a 190mph crash during final practice. His Simtek-Ford slid off as he came down the straight from Tamburello and crashed heavily into the wall alongside the track. He was given heart massage at the scene before being rushed to hospital by helicopter, but died soon after arrival. Rubens Barrichello crashed his Jordan-Hart at the circuit only 24 hours earlier, but he escaped without serious injury.
A stunned Simtek team paid tribute to Roland Ratzenberger following his death after a practice crash. A team statement described him as a "highly accomplished and successful driver...a true all-rounder, whose brave style will be sadly missed." Ratzenberger had worked for 13 years to earn a seat in Formula One and made his race debut at the recent Pacific GP in Japan. His earlier career involved stints in the British Formula Three and Japanese Group C Championships.
Britain's Johnny Herbert said he was deeply saddened by the death of Roland Ratzenberger. The Lotus Mugen-Honda driver said: "He will be sorely missed by the many friends who enjoyed his company." Herbert, who affectionately knew the Austrian as 'The Rat' added: "He had an infectious sense of humour and worked for everything he achieved in motor racing. I am greatly saddened by the loss of a friend."
Final grid positions: mins secs 1 A Senna Brz Williams 1:21.548 2 M Schumacher Ger Benetton 1:21.885 3 G Berger Aut Ferrari 1:22.113 4 D Hill GB Williams 1:22.168 5 JJ Lehto Fin Benetton 1:22.717 6 N Larini It Ferrari 1:22.841 7 H Frentzen Ger Sauber 1:23.119 8 M Hakkinen Fin McLaren 1:23.140 9 U Katayama Jpn Tyrrell 1:23.322 10 K Wendlinger Aut Sauber 1:23.347 11 G Morbidelli It Footwork 1:23.663 12 M Blundell GB Tyrrell 1:23.703 13 M Brundle GB McLaren 1:23.858 14 P Martini It Minardi 1:24.078 15 M Alboreto It Minardi 1:24.276 16 C Fittipaldi Br Arrows 1:24.472 17 E Bernard Fr Ligier 1:24.678 18 E Comas Fr Larrousse 1:24.852 19 O Panis Fr Ligiers 1:24.996 20 J Herbert GB Lotus 1:25.114 21 A De Cesaris It Jordan 1:25.234 22 P Lamy Por Lotus 1:25.295 23 O Beretta Mon Larrousse 1:25.991 24 D Brabham Aus Simtek 1:26.817 25 B Gachot Bel Pacific 1:27.143 26 P Belmondo Fr Pacific 1:27.881
F3:- Scotland's Dario Franchitti is on provisional pole for Monday's British Formula Three Championship race at Silverstone. He clocked 55.73 secs in his Dallara Mugen, 0.18 quicker than second-placed Scott Lakin.
F3000:- David Coulthard has signed for Vortex Motorsport and will compete in this weekend's FIA International F3000 Championship at Silverstone. Coulthard, 23, will continue his duties as official test driver for F1 team Williams-Renault.