Mark this day as a landmark for my blog.
Despite this week’s visit by NASCAR to Las Vegas, you will read about Formula One before stock cars or dragsters.
That’s because Peter Windsor and Ken Anderson announced today in Charlotte, N.C., that they have formed USF1 and plan (hope) to field two cars designed and built in America’s stock-car country in time to open the 2010 Formula One season.
They claim to have the funding for the project that needs $62 million and 100 employees to be competitive on the track. The team will be based in the Charlotte, N.C., area.
When the topic of drivers for the team came up, Windsor did some good name-dropping.
He mentioned current Sprint Cup driver Kyle Busch and former F1 racer Scott Speed. Windsor also added IndyCar diva Danica Patrick and Marco Andretti, son of Michael and grandson of Mario.
"These will be the fun things," Windsor said during a live news conference televised on Speed (Digital 329).
"We’ve been going through the growth pains for two, three years. Drivers, sponsors, engines — they are all the fun bits of a race team. They are not easy, but when we realized that the technology was here (in Charlotte), and with the help of the new FIA regulations, which were made for new teams to come into the sport, we therefore could do a team here in the United States, and it was going to be a car made in America.
"We don’t have any American drivers in Formula One right now, so by definition, the two people we have in the car in 2010 will be relatively inexperienced without a lot of road dust on them, but at the same time, we are going to stick to that.
"We know Scott. He’s a very talented guy. He’s doing very well in NASCAR right now. It would be interesting to know if he is totally comfortable where he is right now.
"We were chatting with Dave Despain (of Speed TV) the other night about Kyle Busch, for example. What a great star he would be. Formula One would welcome anything like that. Danica Patrick is another name that has to be considered for what she has achieved and, again, she’s raced in Europe, and she’s done it the hard way."
Windsor and Anderson must be optimistic chaps.
Kyle will be at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Friday morning. Care to guess what one of the questions for him will be?
Matt Kenseth isn’t the only driver to win the first two races of the season.
NHRA Funny Car driver Ron Capps also is 2-for-2. He won drag racing’s opener in Pomona, Calif., and won the title Sunday near Phoenix.
Neither Kenseth nor Capps won a title last season. Kenseth has won two straight with new crew chief Drew Blickensderfer, and Capps has done it with veteran Ed "Ace" McCulloch.
"Our focus this year is to roll into each race and rip their hearts out in each run, focus on winning each race. The points will come," Capps said.
"It’s a great feeling, because we were embarrassed by not winning any races last year."
LVMS racing begins Wednesday
Five big days of racing will start Wednesday at LVMS with USAC Sprint Cars and Midgets on the half-mile dirt track.
Brad Sweet of Grass Valley, Calif., will be joined by team owner Kasey Kahne in the Las Vegas Super Sprint Classic, which will begin at 7 p.m. Sweet won the last National and Western Midget race.
In the Sprint Car race at LVMS, Darren Hagen of Riverside, Calif., will try to win consecutive titles after finishing first Saturday night at Manzanita Speedway in Phoenix.
On Thursday night, the World of Outlaws will take over the Dirt Track, making its first appearance in Las Vegas since 2006.