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Rotary returns to premier level road racing

Old 03-18-05, 01:02 PM
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Thumbs up Rotary returns to premier level road racing

I just want to make sure you all are up to speed on current news. This story was just released by www.rotarynews.com.

Mazda North American Operations (MNAO) and MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development today announced that Mazda will return to the top level of professional sports car racing as an engine supplier in the LMP-2 class of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS). The company will provide engineering and technical assistance to BK Motorsports, overseeing the development and deployment of a RENESIS-based three-rotor rotary racing engine. It is hoped that BK Motorsports' success will lead other teams to choose the RENESIS rotary race engine.

Unlike in the past when Mazda's greatest racing success -- victory at the 1991 running of the famed 24 Hours of Le Mans -- was from a full factory-supported program, BK Motorsports is a privately funded and run team with monetary support from Sportsbook.com. Mazda has provided extensive engineering support to the team to ensure the success of the engine. In addition, technical assistance and engine construction and tuning will be undertaken by SpeedSource Race Engineering, which also runs a championship-winning Grand Am Street Touring program with the RENESIS rotary-powered RX-8.

"There's nothing like the sound of a full-race Mazda rotary engine at 9,000 rpm, and anyone who's heard one is not likely to forget its distinctive tone," said Steve Sanders, Manager, MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development for MNAO. "As one of the original funding and marketing partners in the ALMS series, and one of the most successful sportscar engine and chassis manufacturers of all time, it's an absolute thrill for Mazda to be back in top-flight sportscar racing in North America."

In order to ensure success, Mazda turned to many of the most well-known and respected names in the rotary performance business for advice, including Jim Mederer (owner of Racing Beat, an accessory and performance shop), Jim Downing (multiple title-winner in Mazda-powered IMSA RS, GTU and Camel GTP-Light cars), Dennis Spencer (who ran a very successful Camel GTP-Light program in the IMSA series), Roger Mandeville (1983 IMSA GTU and 1984 GTO champion, all in RX-7-based cars), and Sylvain Tremblay and David Haskell (of SpeedSource Inc., a successful race engineering and development company). It was only with the assistance of these experts in the "black art" of racing rotary engine preparation that the company decided it was ready to return to the deep end of top level racing.

The engine is based on the RENESIS rotary engine as supplied in Mazda's flagship sportscar, the RX-8. It is designated 20B, a three-rotor design incorporating electronic fuel injection with a full data-gathering system. And, like its street-going two-rotor sibling in the RX-8, the engine revs to over 9,000rpm -- this being one of the hallmarks of the rotary engine. While still undergoing final tuning, Mazda and SpeedSource are targeting output in excess of 400 hp, making it competitive with other engines in the class.

The engine was chosen for its light weight, compact size and ease of packaging. In turn, BK Motorsports has chosen the small, nimble Courage C65 chassis because it is able to accommodate a number of different powerplants, not the least of which is the unique Mazda rotary.

BK Motorsports and the RENESIS rotary engine will make their official race debuts at the Sportsbook.com Grand Prix of Atlanta, at the famed Road Atlanta track, April 15-17, 2005. After that, the team intends to compete for the complete ALMS season.

On any given weekend, there are more Mazdas on the road-race tracks of America than any other brand of vehicle. Mazda's motorsport involvement even extends to the nation's premier road-racing circuit, Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
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Old 03-18-05, 01:12 PM
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great news!
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Old 03-18-05, 01:35 PM
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Thumbs up

Fantastic! I can't wait to see it in action.
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Old 03-18-05, 01:36 PM
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So, are they updating the 20B or is this like a slack-jaw coming up to me at the gas station and telling me about his buddies 12B? I thought the 20B was a 3-rotor 13B..
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Old 03-18-05, 02:18 PM
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Just read teh whole thing, and Dam, racing in April this year already. Gotta hit up Road America when they race there this year.
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Old 03-18-05, 02:55 PM
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OMG! I live 30 mins away from that track. I'll be there!
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Old 03-18-05, 03:21 PM
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/drool 20B Renesis..... 400HP w/o super/turbocharger...Is it too early to get inline for engine swap lol.

It's designation might be 20BMSP, which would make sense since the previous gen. motor nomenclature was 13Brew (20B) and the renesis is 13BMSP or could just be 20B....

edit....Forgot which board i was on....swapping that engine into my Rx8 that is, not a 7.....well you could do that but 8's are kinda lacking in the pony department as is.

Last edited by Alienfusion; 03-18-05 at 03:25 PM.
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Old 03-18-05, 03:35 PM
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Pics... courtesy of RotaryNews.Com...



-Bern
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Old 03-18-05, 03:59 PM
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Seems like I broke this news about a year ago and someone said there was no way it would happen. I need to go back and find that thread. About damn time Mazda!
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Old 03-18-05, 04:16 PM
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Found it. Damon, wanna eat crow? It should at least taste good given the good news. Just messin' with ya man.

https://www.rx7club.com/forum/showthread.php?t=336689
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Old 03-18-05, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by C. Ludwig
Found it. Damon, wanna eat crow? It should at least taste good given the good news. Just messin' with ya man.

https://www.rx7club.com/forum/showthread.php?t=336689
Although we (RN.COM) had details of this program before the AutoWeek deal, we were on a verbal NDA with Mazda... but the cat is out of the bag now!

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Old 03-18-05, 04:29 PM
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A LITTLE LESS CONVERSATION, A LITTLE MORE ACTION: SPORTSBOOK.COM BRINGS MAZDA BACK TO THE ALMS



The New Mazda Powered Sportsbook.com B-K Motorsport Courage C65
Sebring, Fla. - The American Le Mans Series (ALMS) hit the jackpot with a full house of ALMS sponsorship announcements made at Sebring International Raceway prior to the historic Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring March 19.

Sportsbook.com has decided to become a player on the track. The online giant will join the return of Mazda to North American Road Racing as the primary sponsor of the No. 8 Mazda factory powered Courage C65 for B-K Motorsports. Pat Kestner and Bob Bach of B-K will display a scale model of the race car at Chateau Elan at Sebring International Raceway.

Sportsbook.com will also be the "official online gaming partner" of the ALMS for one year, which will include sponsorship of the "Sportsbook.com Winners Circle" at all ALMS events. Sportbook.com will also support a "Lucky Move of the Race" contingency award of $1,000 presented to the one driver who got lucky on the track at the previous race during prerace ceremonies. The last "Lucky Move of the Race" award at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca will be given to the recipient driver at the ALMS year-end banquet. In addition, lucky fans will have the chance to win Mazda RX-8s and other prizes over the course of the season via online entries.

The final aspect of the sponsorship trifecta involves Sportsbook.com becoming the title sponsor of the Grand Prix of Atlanta April 17.

B-K MOTORSPORTS ANNOUNCES THE SPORTSBOOK.COM, MAZDA ROTARY POWERED, P2 COURAGE 2002 FORMULA MAZDA

Wisconsin based B-K Motorsports announced at Sebring International Raceway that it would carry the Mazda banner and rotary power back into endurance racing in the LMP2 class of the American Le Mans Series for a full season in 2005. The Mazda powered Courage will be piloted by 2002 Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) Formula Mazda National champion, Jamie Bach, and 2002 Star Mazda Championship winner Guy Cosmo. The Formula Mazda graduates duo has worked together previously as Cosmo served as driver-coach for Bach during the 2003 campaign.

The twenty-one year-old Bach, a junior Engineering student at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, will be entering his fifth season of racing cars in 2005 having spent most of his time behind the wheel of Formula Mazdas. Bach, the 2002 SCCA Formula Mazda national champion, has amassed nearly 50 victories and over 30 pole positions in four seasons and currently holds six track records. Bach spent 2004 behind the wheel of the SIRIUS Satellite Radio Pro Formula Mazda, finishing eighth in the Star Mazda Series North American Championship presented by Goodyear. In 2004, he also scored his third SCCA Central Division Championship in four years, his third Central Division Star Mazda Series crown, and scored a runaway victory in the prestigious Chicago Region June Sprints at his home circuit -- Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin's Road America. Bach got his start in karting at the tender age of nine, scoring victories and championships at all levels.



Brian Skuza of Road Atlanta, Scott Atherton of the ALMS, John Doonen of B-K Motorsport, Alex Czajkowski of Sportsbook.com, Robert Davis of Mazda
Cosmo has basically driven anything with wheels on it. Also a product of karting, he has driven Formula Continentals, Formula Fords and Formula Mazdas to divisional championships in the SCCA. In 2002, Cosmo won the crown in the Star Mazda Series North American Championship with dominant victories at Mid-Ohio and Road America. With that championship, Cosmo was given the opportunity to drive the Panoz LMP1 car and ultimately had the opportunity to start his first Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring in the LMP1 Riley and Scott of American Spirit Racing in 2004.

The program is made possible largely because of a partnership with Sportsbook.com, a division of Sportingbet, a UK based company. Sportsbook.com and Sportingbet easily form the world's largest Internet gaming company and one of the Internet's most profitable companies.

In 1991, Mazda became the first and is still the only Japanese car manufacturer to win the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans. Mazda did so with the legendary rotary power plant, a key icon that has contributed to the unique heritage of the company that instills the "Soul of a Sports Car" in all of its products. With the rotary engine back in the marketplace as of 2003 in Mazda's RX-8 four door, four-seat sports car, it is only fitting that a group of young, dedicated racers bring Mazda back to endurance racing.

The team also brings Goodyear Racing Tires back to the American Le Mans Series, a fitting tie-in with the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear.

The 10-race American Le Mans Series will have three network television broadcasts on CBS and seven races televised on SPEED Channel and worldwide on the Sky Sports World Motorsports program.




After an absence of one year from the race schedule, the American Le Mans Series will be back at its home track of Road Atlanta for the Sportsbook.com Grand Prix of Atlanta on April 17. The Sportsbook.com Grand Prix of Atlanta will be the warm-up for the world famous Petit Le Mans event at Road Atlanta in October.

QUOTES:

Pat Kestner, Co-Owner, No. 8 Sportsbook.com Mazda Courage

"We want to thank Sportsbook.com for its commitment to our program and its partnership. Bob (Bach) and I are honored to be associated with Mazda's return to the American Le Mans Series and the folks at Mazda North American Operations. We have made a strong commitment to put our best foot forward in everything we do at B-K and the organizations we are aligned with are no different. We are honored to represent Sportsbook.com, Mazda, Goodyear, and the other companies we will bring on board both on and off the track, scoring victories at race tracks and in board rooms."

John Doonan, Director of Marketing & Public Relations, No. 8 Sportsbook.com Mazda Courage

"For decades, thousands of race drivers have chosen to race Mazda products because of Mazda's relentless commitment to achieve motorsports success at a grassroots level. The spirit of these drivers is the same energy and "never give up" attitude Mazda engineers possess and instill in new Mazda products. It is this "will to never give up" that will be the foundation of our team as we put Mazda back on the American Le Mans Series grid. This is a dream come true for everyone on this team. We are thrilled that Sportsbook.com saw the link with Mazda's return and the reach and exposure through the American Le Mans Series. It is a true victory for everyone involved."

Sylvain Tremblay, Team Owner/Driver, SpeedSource Race Engineering

"SpeedSource has been working on a three-rotor development program for almost a full year now, and we are excited that we have a great partnership with B-K and its new Courage Chassis. The Mazda rotary engine has a great racing heritage. We are focused on developing the power plant to be competitive with the best the class has to offer. We made a substantial investment in infrastructure with the addition of our new state-of-the-art DTS computerized engine dynamometer. David Haskell leads the engine department and has been busy all winter. Now the challenge of the track and the rebirth of the rotary on the ALMS circuit await us."

Yves Courage, Courage Competition

"We feel honoured to have been chosen both by B-K Motorsport and by Mazda; Mazda is returning to endurance races on American ALMS tracks, but it has marked the history of endurance races for decades; such challenge makes our team extraordinarily enthusiastic! We all remember the unique sound of the Mazda engines and the great results achieved by Mazda in endurance races, particularly in the 24 Hours Le Mans. Mazda has been victorious six times in its category between 1983 and 1996, and has won the 24 Hours Le Mans in 1991. In 1991, three Mazdas finished among the top eights. I am also most glad about the quality cooperation with the American B-K Motorsports team. We are proud to offer such quality chassis as the C65 to our B-K Motorsports partner, and we are actively working together on the new Mazda engine."

Guy Cosmo, Co-Driver, #8 Sportsbook.com Mazda Courage

"Jamie and I are thrilled to have this special opportunity to represent Sportsbook.com across the country and be a part of Mazda's racing history. We are going to grow throughout the year and look for as many testing opportunities as we can. The new car is very exciting and takes our game to the next level. The Renesis rotary power from Mazda will be outstanding. We will be able to relate our experiences on the track with those of RX-8 owners on the streets. We are thrilled that the team at Sportsbook.com had enough confidence in us, the American Le Mans Series, and our program to join forces with us for 2005."
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Old 03-18-05, 04:37 PM
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I want a Die Cast of that car now.
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Old 03-18-05, 05:32 PM
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Very nice. My 12a sounds pretty nice at 9000 rpm too.
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Old 03-18-05, 07:50 PM
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Goodyear? Booooo!
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Old 03-19-05, 12:38 AM
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Old 03-19-05, 12:41 AM
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Better link with more info here:

http://www.mazdamotorsports.com/weba...0001&langId=-1

Can't wait, glad I have a hard card!
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Old 03-19-05, 01:06 AM
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Very happy to hear Mazda decided to race again in North America
The one driver Guy Cosmo, saw him drive over here in a Danish Formula series, which I believe he became Class Champion...
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Old 03-19-05, 02:03 AM
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Schweeet
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Old 03-19-05, 08:03 AM
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Awsome news! Funny how they are sponsoring a contingency award called the "lucky move of the race". Anyone notice the similarity to this places catchphrase "Man you got lucky, glad it worked out in the end".
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Old 08-24-05, 10:28 PM
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B-K racing is having a good season. Hope you all are keeping up on the points...

http://www.americanlemans.com/result...005_points.PDF
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Old 08-24-05, 10:32 PM
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I saw the car at Road America, they let us rotary guys in the pits and take a closer look at it. Pretty awesome.
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Old 08-25-05, 02:07 AM
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You can follow all the B-K motorsport action at RotaryNews. We are posting information from every round of the ALMS season, driver updates, and previews.

http://www.rotarynews.com/

-Bern

Last edited by Bern; 08-25-05 at 02:09 AM.
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Old 08-25-05, 05:38 AM
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Any rumors about LeMans2006???
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Old 08-25-05, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Kim
Any rumors about LeMans2006???
http://rotarynews.com/node/view/645

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