Tag Archives: sports

Significant Facts About French Railways

Thanks to the outstanding railway network in France, which is run by the state owned train company SNCF, train travel in France is a pleasant, efficient and reasonably priced experience.

Train travel in France is of high quality mainly due to the endeavours of Sociate Nationale de Chemins de Fer or SNCF which looks after the maintenance part of the railways. This is a government supported company. French government funds the high speed TGV train in France.

The network of trains in France is expansive and reaches almost all over the country. The only drawback is however that because the train network in France is designed around Paris, you usually have to go through Paris even when travelling between two provincial towns.

All main railway lines start from Paris and reach almost all the places in France. There are six main railway stations in France and Paris happens to be the changing venue for most of the other destinations.

Electric trains constitute the major part of the railway network in France. 80% of the total number of trains that move about in France is electricity-run.

Details about train times and train tickets in France can be obtained from the ticket window, or guichet, of any staffed train station in France.

A travel guide known as guide regionale des transports is issued by the local government for the sake of the travellers who tour France. A leaflet called horaire is also distributed free at main railway stations in France for the benefit of the tourists.

Main train stations in France have left luggage offices where you can leave bags and bicycles for up to 24 hours.

Valuables can be kept for a period of three days in computerized lockers available in main railway stations in France. They are known as consigne automatique. You can apply the code provided to you after the payment of a fee to use the lockers.

Travelling by train in France is on the whole a pleasant experience. If you are particularly interested in riding the High speed TGV trains please click on the links.

Petit Le Mans will be the anniversary of Scott Tucker’s professional debut

The pinnacle of the 2011 American Le Mans series takes place on Oct. 1 with the 14th annual Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. For Scott Tucker, driver and owner for Level 5 Motorsports, the race marks the beginning of his sixth year of professional racing. In 2006, he made his professional debut at Petit Le Mans, and from there, his career took off.

“There are not many Americans that get to race there, first and foremost, so I feel very privileged to be among that group,” he said. “This year, we’re the only American prototype team there. We feel very fortunate we were selected to race there.”

The Petit Le Mans race is an endurance race modeled after the 24 Hours of Le Mans, which is its equivalent for the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup series. Road Atlanta owner Don Panoz founded it, and the first iteration ran on Oct. 10, 1998-and Panoz must have had a thing for tens, because the race covers a maximum of 1,000 miles or a minimum of 10 hours, whichever comes first. Class winners of Petit Le Mans automatically qualify for the following year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Tucker has increasingly focused on the American Le Mans Series as his career has continued. After he founded Level 5 Motorsports in 2008, his main actions have included drafting talented veterans known for incredible precision even at maximum speeds. This year’s Petit Le Mans has unofficially been the holy grail in Tucker’s eyes: Mid-season, he announced the switch from the team’s Nos. 55 and 95 Microsoft Office-sponsored LMP2 cars to a brand new, right-off-the-line HPD ARX-01g chassis, the result of a partnership between Honda Performance Development and Wirth Research. Tucker pushed hard to get the car finished as quickly as possible, of course without sacrificing quality. While making the transition between cars, Tucker even withdrew from ALMS races in Lime Rock Park and a huge one at Silverstone in Great Britain, choosing instead to focus on the all-important Petit ahead.

Now, Tucker has added a fourth elite driver to his already well-stacked team. Marino Franchitti will join the team and its new car-which Tucker marks as best in its class-for the 2011 race at Road Atlanta. Franchitti has extensive experience with the HPD prototype family, having participated in the first year of development of the ARX-01a with Andretti Green Racing before spending some LMP2 time with Dyson Racing. The addition of Franchitti to the lineup is an obvious sign that Tucker is going for the win at Petit Le Mans, though that’s never not the case when Tucker enters a race track. He is a three-time national driving champion. Level 5 Motorsports’ performance in 2010 during its debut year in the American Le Mans Series sent them to the top of the podium and bumped them into the LMP2 category.

Tucker has made giant strides since his Petit Le Mans professional debut in 2006, and this year he’s possibly the most prepared he’s ever been. A victory would mean another addition to Tucker’s unbelievable record in the past five years, and moving to the LMP1 category would mean that Tucker has made it to the top class in the sport he seemingly was born to compete in. Whatever the results end up meaning for Level 5 Motorsports, the work they’ve already put in this year make it clear that the team is one of the most prolific, aggressive racing organizations in the world.

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker and Level 5 Motorsports Look to End Season on a High Note

Scott Tucker is looking for a successful conclusion to an extraordinary year of racing when they compete in the 14th annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda at Road Atlanta on Saturday, Oct. 1.

An endurance sports car race covering 1,000 miles or 10 hours, Petit Le Mans is the final race of the 2011 season in the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron. The event also serves as the second-to-last stop on the 2011 Intercontinental Le Mans Cup (ILMC) schedule.

The Level 5 Motorsports crew, headed by Scott Tucker, is particularly excited about the Petit Le Mans because both of the teams’ new HPD ARX-01g cars will be in action in the Le Mans Prototype 2, or LMP2, class. Both cars are sponsored by Microsoft Office 2010.

The Level 5 team’s No. 33 car, which is the crew’s ILMC entry, will be handled by Tucker, Christophe Bouchut of France and Joao Barbosa of Portugal.

In the Level 5 team’s No. 055 car, Tucker will be joined by Luis Diaz of Mexico and Marino Franchitti of Scotland. Franchitti, the newest addition to the Level 5 team, boasts a wealth of experience at the wheel of HPD prototypes. Franchitti, whose older brother is three-time IZOD IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti, will be seeking his third consecutive Petit Le Mans class victory.

The LMP2 division is seeing increasing competition and will will also include entries from United Autosports, Signatech Nissan and Oak Racing in the Petit Le Mans.

Tucker, the team owner who founded Level 5 in 2006 and earned Rookie of the Year honors in the American Le Mans Series in 2010, is looking to put the finishing touches on an outstanding 2011 season. Among other accomplishments including numerous podium appearances, Tucker notched his milestone 60th career victory this year.

As the 2011 season comes to a close, Tucker and his Level 5 teammates are planning to compete in the inaugural running of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) in 2012. The 2012 WEC campaign, based on the format of the ILMC, is scheduled to include seven endurance sports car races including the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans. Races will take place in North America, Europe and Asia.

Viewers can catch the Petit Le Mans on ABC Sports at 4 p.m. Eastern Time on Sunday, Oct. 2. For live updates, visit www.americanlemans.com.

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker After More Hardware at Road Atlanta

Level 5 Motorsports saved the best for last in qualifying for the 14th annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda, as Luis Diaz put the No. 055 Microsoft Office 2010-sponsored HPD ARX-01g on the LMP2 pole in thrilling fashion, leading a 1-3 qualifying effort for the Scott Tucker-owned organization.

Teammate Christophe Bouchut in Level 5’s Intercontinental Le Mans Cup-designated No. 33 Microsoft Office 2010 HPD ARX-01g held the top spot for the majority of the 15-minute prototype session but was bumped by the No. 26 Signatech ORECA-Nissan in the closing moments.

With time running out on the session, Bouchut was unable to respond after setting a respectable 1:12.729 lap time on the packed 2.54-mile Road Atlanta road course. Diaz, however, made continual improvements in his Honda-powered prototype and completed one more flying lap just before the checkered flag flew. It ended up being the pole run for the 2009 American Le Mans Series LMP2 champion.

“It was a matter of having a clean lap,” Diaz said. “The LMP1 cars didn’t make our lives very easy. We were surprised because we know the speed of the Nissan, and to beat them here is very special. But the Level 5 guys did a great job with the car. They’ve worked around the clock in both Europe and here to prepare the cars. I think this pole is great motivation for the race.”

Tucker, is a a four-time driving champion following his title in last weekend’s SCCA National Runoffs at Road America. He has proven to be the busiest and most successful driver at Road Atlanta this week, having already earned three wins in five race starts.

He scored wins in both Thursday and Friday’s Cooper Tire IMSA Prototype Lites races while also cruising to victory in the SCCA Pro Racing Trans-Am Series 100-mile race in his Microsoft Office 2010-sponsored Ferrari 430 Challenge car. The Trans-Am victory in the Global GT class marked his 63rd career win.

“There was some great racing out there,” Tucker said. “It’s great to have earned three more wins in the last two days. We grabbed the pole for tomorrow, so there’s a lot of momentum building. We’re looking forward to the big one and hopefully getting back on the top step of the podium”

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker Wins Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Championship Race

In a week that has Scott Tucker slated to compete in a total of six different races, the Level 5 Motorsports driver got off to a strong start with a win in the Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Championship on Thursday. The win was Tucker’s third straight in the Lites 2 class.

Tucker will be taking stints in both the No. 33 and the No. 055 Microsoft Office 2010-sponsored HPD ARX-01g racecars on Saturday for Petit Le Mans – the famed 1,000-mile or 10-hour endurance race that marks the conclusion of the American Le Mans Series season.

He will also be tackling five support series races: the Cooper Tire Prototype Lites double-header, two rounds of the IMSA GT3 Challenge by Yokohama series and Friday’s SCCA Pro Racing Trans-Am event with Level 5’s Ferrari 458 Challenge car. This makes Tucker the busiest driver in the paddock.

Despite the other events on the schedule, the ultimate focus will be on delivering success on Saturday as Level 5 seeks to solidify its runner-up position in the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup LMP2 championship standings.

Level 5, which is searching for back-to-back Petit Le Mans victories after their LMPC win at Road Atlanta last year, has already locked up this year’s ALMS LMP2 drivers and teams titles to go with their 2010 accolades in LMPC, which included the inaugural drivers championship and Rookie-of-the-Year honors for Tucker.

Qualifying for the 14th annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda is scheduled for 2:35 p.m. ET on Friday, September 30 and will be available in the U.S. on ESPN3 or outside the U.S. on americanlemans.com. The 1,000-mile/10-hour endurance race is set for Saturday, Oct. 1. The race will air on ABC at 4 p.m. ET on Sunday, Oct. 2. Live coverage will be available in the U.S. on ESPN3 or outside the U.S. on americanlemans.com beginning at 11:15 a.m. ET on Saturday, Oct. 1.

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker and Level 5 team Testing Days A Good Sign for Petit Le Mans

Scott Tucker and his Level 5 Motorsports team have been taking full advantage of testing days for this weekend’s Petit Le Mans. Racking up the odometers on the team’s brand new Honda prototypes is paramount for the race at Road Atlanta, effectively the championship of the American Le Mans Series, which has been on Tucker’s to-do list all year. The new cars, two Honda Performance Development/Wirth Research-made Le Mans Prototype 2 models, were a long-awaited addition to the team that involved some risk, but one that has proven worthwhile since the cars were rolled out of the box a week ago.

Tucker and teammates took the first-place podium spot at last weekend’s Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) National Championship Runoffs at Road America, an historical win for Tucker, who has now won three consecutive Runoffs championships. The race was the HPD ARX-01g’s debut run, but you wouldn’t have known it if the prototype hadn’t been eagerly anticipated in media coverage. The car’s performance was flawless, and so far, at testing for Petit Le Mans, its performance is also consistent.

The team, which includes drivers Tucker, Luis Diaz, Christophe Bouchut, Joao Barbosa and Marino Franchitti, posted the fastest lap times in the first pair of testing days at Road Atlanta. Tucker, Barbosa and Bouchut tackled the first session Sunday in the team’s Microsoft Office-sponsored No. 33 HPD ARX-01g, recording 99 laps, one of which was a class leader at 1:17.799. The same trio posted a solid 1:13.729 during the last session on Monday.

The team’s other entry, the No. 055 HPD ARX-01g, also driven by Tucker along with Franchitti and Diaz, only made an appearance Monday, but what an appearance it was: The drivers again topped the LMP2 class with a 1:13.291. Because only the No. 33 car had been raced before, the practice time was especially important for the No. 55 entry. But its wheel couldn’t have been put in more able hands: Franchitti has extensive experience not only in the LMP2 class but in nearly every iteration of the HPD ARX prototypes, starting with the ARX-01a. Diaz also has a background in the LMP2 class, winning the class championship in 2009 with another team before joining Level 5 in 2011.

The Level 5 Motorsports team has already clinched the LMP2 class championship with the most points scored in the season, so they now look for a podium finish in their LMP2 debut at the 14th annual Petit Le Mans and a powerful delivery from their new prototypes.

“We’re all very happy with how testing has gone,” Tucker said. “Especially since the No. 055 hasn’t seen any track time, we’re extremely pleased with its performance. We have a long week and a long race ahead of us, but I don’t think we could have a better starting position at this point.”

The 10 hours or 1,000 miles of Petit Le Mans will begin Saturday. The Level 5 Motorsports team is well stocked for a sizzling LMP2 debut, having acquired the new prototypes and Franchitti just in time for the competition. Last year at Petit Le Mans, the Level 5 team won the LMP class championship, which bumped them to the LMP2 division. With all the work that’s gone into preparing for Petit Le Mans this season, it’s clear that Tucker and Level 5 are aiming to move up the ranks again and truly compete on the next level of racing.

Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker and Level 5 Motorsports Targeting LMP2 Victory in Petit Le Mans

As the North American race season comes to a close, Level 5 Motorsports heads into the 14th annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda, the final round of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrn season, as one of the teams best positioned for victory.

With the challenging 1,000-mile or 10-hour endurance race still ahead of them, Scott Tucker-led organization return to a two-car operation with a pair of new Microsoft Office 2010-sponsored HPD ARX-01gs. They take on the top LMP2 teams from Europe which have descended upon the famed Road Atlanta circuit for the penultimate Intercontinental Le Mans Cup race of the season.

Following their impressive fourth place overall finish and P 2 Class win at Laguna Seca in the debut of its new cost-capped prototype and Tucker’s third consecutive SCCA National Championship earned last weekend in Road America, Level 5 enters the Road Atlanta enduro with plenty of momentum from the past two weeks of racing.

Tucker will not only be pulling double-duty in both the ILMC-designated No. 33 HPD and the No. 055 cars on Saturday but will also be tackling five support series races, beginning on Thursday. The now four-time national driving champion will be seeking continued success in the Cooper Tire Prototype Lites double-header, as well as the two rounds of the IMSA GT3 Challenge by Yokohama series in his Kelly Moss Motorsports-prepared Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car.

He is also scheduled to participate in the SCCA Pro Racing Trans-Am event Friday with Level 5’s Ferrari 458 Challenge car. That makes Tucker one of the the busiest drivers in the paddock. While Tucker will have to juggle a packed schedule each day, the ultimate focus will be on delivering success on Saturday as Level 5 seeks to solidify its runner-up position in the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup LMP2 championship standings.

Level 5 is looking for back-to-back Petit Le Mans victories after their LMPC win at Road Atlanta last year. They have already locked up this year’s ALMS LMP2 drivers and teams titles to go with their 2010 accolades in LMPC, which included the inaugural drivers championship and Rookie-of-the-Year honors for Tucker.

Qualifying for the 14th annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda is scheduled for 2:35 p.m. ET on Friday, September 30 and will be available in the U.S. on ESPN3 or outside the U.S. on americanlemans.com. The 1,000-mile/10-hour endurance race is set for Saturday, Oct. 1. The race will air on ABC at 4 p.m. ET on Sunday, Oct. 2. Live coverage will be available in the U.S. on ESPN3 or outside the U.S. on americanlemans.com beginning at 11:15 a.m. ET on Saturday, Oct. 1.

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker, Level 5 Win Petit Le Mans, ALMS Championship

Scott Tucker, Christophe Bouchut and Joao Barbosa scored a dominant victory in the 14th annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda.

With the team’s two Microsoft Office 2010-sponsored HPD ARX-01g’s making their debuts in one of the world’s toughest endurance races, Tucker, Bouchut and Barbosa stuck to their plan of bringing the new LMP2 car home in one piece. It ended with an impressive sixth place finish overall and class victory after a flawless run in the 1,000-mile marathon.

“The competition was real tough today and we knew this was going to be a real big battle for us,” said Tucker. “We still have a lot of work to do on the car but we did a great job with it. Joao and Christophe drove a great race. We didn’t miss a beat. With the car being just three weeks old and having gone through a six-hour race and now a 1,000-mile race as well with no problems, we’re real fortunate with that.”

With the third position on the grid, four-time national driving champion Tucker put the No. 33 car in an early lead, battling with the Signatech ORECA Nissan throughout his solid opening double-stint. The two teams, locked in the fight for the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup, enjoyed a spirited fight until the Nissan struck mechanical problems in the fifth hour.

With Bouchut and Barbosa putting in consistent stints, most importantly staying out of trouble around the treacherous 2.54-mile Road Atlanta road course, the final four and a half hours proved to be clear sailing for the Level 5 team, which took the class victory by a hefty eight lap margin.

“The cars performed well and I’m happy for the entire team on this big win,” said team manager David Stone. “It was unfortunate the Signatech Nissan had a problem with their power steering. Everyone would have enjoyed seeing how the fight would have gone until the end. But we all have those issues once in a while. If we didn’t lose a turbo in our No. 055 car, we may have had two cars on the podium tonight.

The next stop on Level 5 Motorsports’ world tour is the Six Hours of Zhuhai, the seventh and final round of the 2011 Intercontinental Le Mans Cup season. The endurance race in the Guangdong province of China that will close out the exciting sportscar championship is scheduled for November 11-13, with radiolemans.com providing live audio commentary over the weekend.

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker Gets Ready for Busy Race Weekend

With their successful two-day test session in preparation for this weekend’s Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta in the books, Scott Tucker and Level 5 Motorsports took a much needed break from on-track action Tuesday as the American Le Mans Series teams continue preparations for the final race of the season.

Level 5 was fastest for both days of testing with a best lap of 1:13.291 during the final session on Monday. That sets the stage for an exciting round of qualifying that is scheduled for Friday afternoon. The time was posted by the No. 055 HPD ARX-01g, which will be driven by Tucker, Luis Diaz and Marino Franchitti. The team’s second entry, the No. 33 HPD ARX-01g with Tucker, Christophe Bouchut and Joao Barbosa sharing the driving duties, finished second in testing.

The ALMS season winds down with Tucker and Level 5 having already clinched the championship in the LMP2 class. But, the event is also part of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup in which the team currently sits second in points. With one race after this weekend remaining in that series, Level 5 is in a battle for international bragging rights.

Not one to be content with just one car to race on any given weekend, Tucker has set out with an ambitious schedule for this weekend. He also competes in two Cooper Tires Prototype Lites series races, two IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge by Yokohama races and the SCCA Pro Racing Trans-Am Series event.

It is back to work as practice resumes Wednesday for all series. Tucker will look to build on his recent SCCA STO Nationals Championship – his third consecutive championship in SCCA competition.

The 14th annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda, the 1,000-mile/10-hour endurance race is set for Saturday, Oct. 1. The race will air on ABC at 4 p.m. ET on Sunday, Oct. 2. Live coverage will be available in the U.S. on ESPN3 or outside the U.S. on americanlemans.com.

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker Tireless on Racing Trail

Scott Tucker is known for endurance racing success. But what is seldom discussed the great lengths he goes to find that success. In fact, it is an intercontinental quest.

Tucker is arguably the busiest man in motorsports. The 2011 schedule for Level 5 – which is based in Madison, Wis. – includes events in five different racing series scattered across seven countries around the world. And, he takes to the track at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, this weekend.

“We have a full plate, that is for sure,” Tucker said. “But, we have a very talented and dedicated team. We race to win every time out and we are not going to shy away from the hard work it takes to get there.”

It takes a lot of racing to have so much success so quickly, and Tucker certainly has accumulated plenty of seat time. In 2011, the Level 5 team competed in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series, the American Le Mans Series, the Ferrari Challenge Series, the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup and the IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge.

The schedule for Tucker and team is a backbreaker. In June and July alone, Level 5 competed in races in France, Italy, Canada and the United States. There is also a November trip to China for the 6 Hours of Zhuhai.

This year’s world tour began at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring in March, where Level 5 scored top honors in the American Le Mans Series season-opener. After a trip to the streets of Long Beach, California, the team crossed the Atlantic to take part in the official one-day test at Le Mans. Two weeks later, Level 5 was back in Europe competing in the second round of the ILMC at the historic Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium.

If there is a sports car race, you can bet Tucker has considered participating. At the Road Race Showcase at Road America in Wisconsin, he drove in six races in four different series. In addition to the four-hour ALMS race, Tucker competed in the IMSA Prototype Lites, the IMSA GT3 Challenge by Yokohama and the SCCA Pro Racing Trans-Am races, earning four podium finishes and a victory in the Trans-Am T2 class.

“It’s a tireless effort for Scott. But, that shows his dedication to this race team and his desire to win,” Level 5 Motorsports Team Manager David Stone said. “Whether it’s testing, racing in the ALMS, the ILMC or the Ferrari Challenge Series, Scott has proven that he’s up to the task. And, it is not just about showing up. The team is always prepared to perform at a high level.”

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Level 5’s unique practice perspective: Only racing makes perfect.

Earlier this year, the Scott Tucker-owned racing team Level 5 Motorsports prepared for the 24 Hours of Le Mans, an historic endurance race in the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup series. Like any team, Level 5 aimed to win. But curiously, the team opted out of the option to qualify for a starting position in the race, instead accepting the dead last position for its two Microsoft Office-sponsored LMP2 cars, Nos. 55 and 95.

“Qualifying for a 24-hour race is meaningless,” said a Level 5 mechanic at the time. “Anything that’s not directly related to winning, we’re going to opt out of.”

It’s true; in a day-long event, starting position isn’t the most crucial element. But declining to qualify is not to say that the practice involved in driving laps prior to a race isn’t essential to success in professional motorsports. Specifically, it’s the kind of laps you drive.

The practice sessions open to teams in the days leading up to races are a critical time to get to know an unfamiliar track and maximize the efficiency of driver changes and pit stops. And, for Tucker and Level 5, practice is an opportunity to get a feel for a new car, a factor the team has faced numerous times in its existence.

Most recently, the team unveiled its new LMP2 cost-capped Honda chassis at the American Le Mans Series Monterey at Mazda Laguna Seca Raceway on Sept. 17. The mere hours of road time the car experienced before the race were valuable indicators of how the car would perform in the race, another benefit of practice time.

But generally, the Level 5 team stays true to its mechanic’s word: Practice is nothing if it doesn’t make perfect. That’s one of the reasons the team runs two Le Mans Prototype entries in every race-when Tucker started Level 5 Motorsports in 2008, he was only two years into his professional racing career, and he needed practice. But he also wasn’t willing to waste time completing meaningless laps around a track against no competitors.

“From the time and energy I spend practicing, it just makes more sense to enter two cars in the races,” Tucker said. “Not only that, but it’s actually beneficial to run two cars. When you’re out there practicing, you’re not racing against anybody. When you look at it logically, it’s much smarter from a time perspective and infrastructure perspective, not to mention that you get extra racing seat time.”

To Tucker, the most valuable practice experiences have been those in actual race situations. Although practice sessions have proven useful to the Level 5 team when it wants to survey a new car’s capabilities, the team typically treats each and every mile on the track as an opportunity for a world-class win. That strategy has worked for the team, who now enters the pinnacle of the 2011 season-with the SCCA Runoffs, Petit Le Mans and the 6 Hours of Zhuhai in China left to go-after two years of continuously increasing success.

Although Tucker was 44 when he took the wheel for his first professional race in 2006, his race-only mindset strategy has quickly made up the time he never had to build his career. His success has skyrocketed in just the past 5 years. The results can’t be ignored: He’s a three-time national champion; 2010 ALMS rookie of the year; two-time T1 division national champion, going for a third this weekend; three-time Ferrari Challenge Series champion; and holder of a record 10 wins in the FC series.

Entering his career, Tucker clearly had his accelerator to the floor. He quickly joined endurance veteran Christophe Bouchut, who acted as his mentor in addition to his driving partner. Tucker has always driven with the cream of the elite motorsports crop, a strategy that has allowed him some room to develop as a driver while still being making plenty of podium appearances. The winning mindset he has maintained since day one has helped him become an elite driver in only a handful of years. As Tucker’s team makes its LMP2 debut in the American Le Mans Series Petit Le Mans next weekend, it will compete against some of the fastest, most experienced drivers in the industry. For Level 5 Motorsports, it should be a good practice

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Scott Tucker, Level 5 Offer Behind the Scenes Insight at Petit Le Mans

The American Le Mans Series comes to a close with the Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta Raceway in Braselton, Ga. The endurance racing classic a popular race with race fans the world over due to its tight competition and dramatic racing action.

This year, SPEED.com has offers fans some great insight with video blogs from some of racing’s biggest names. Scott Tucker and his Level 5 Motorsports teammates Christophe Bouchut, Marino Franchitti, Joao Barbosa and Luis Diaz are featured as part of the series on the motorsports website.

With a variety of viewing options available to fans – including live coverage on ESPN 3 and tape-delayed coverage on ABC – this year promises to be among the most interactive races ever. In addition to the video blogs on SPEED, the popular motorsports website InsideMotorsports.com is also offering great behind the scenes access to the Level 5 crew.

With updates throughout the weekend and live coverage during the race, fans unable to attend in person will have their share of choices to enjoy all of the action from trackside. As the American racing season comes to a close, the Petit Le Mans is the last chance to catch Tucker and the entire Level 5 crew in action on American soil in their pair of HPD ARX-01g race cars.

The team will then begin preparations for the final event in the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup in Zhuhai, China in November. The 2011 season marked Level 5’s debut in the LMP2 class on the international racing scene. It also marked the first time in a quarter century that an american team has contested a prototype on the international stage.

With the LMP2 class championship already wrapped up in the ALMS, Level 5 currently sits second in the ILMC point standings.

Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Tucker’s overflowing schedule is testament to his commitment to each series

There’s commitment, and there’s overcommitment. Scott Tucker’s racing schedule, for most people, would be overcommitment. Competing in five series in seven countries for the 2011 season, Tucker has been literally all over the map for the past 10 months. But for Tucker, his racing schedule-which includes the Grand-Am Rolex series, the American Le Mans Series, the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup series, the Ferrari Challenge series and the IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge series-is truly evident of simply commitment. The schedule doesn’t overwhelm him because he’s doing it for the sole reason that he enjoys it. The sometimes four-race weekends don’t stress him out because he wants to be at each and every one. There is perhaps no better way to illustrate Tucker’s commitment to all of the series and cars that have gotten him where he is today than to look at his five-year relationship with Ferrari, where everything started.

Now, Tucker is a three-time national driving champion who has competed in some of the newest, fastest cars in the industry and stood at podium next to the racing veterans who have been doing it the longest. But just five short years ago, Tucker was climbing into the driver’s seat of a Ferrari for his first full season as a race car driver, in the Ferrari Challenge series. He raced at Homestead-Miami Speedway, and later he took fifth place at Portland International Raceway, his best finish of the season. He then took third in one of the two North American races at the World Finals in Italy.

Tucker drove Ferrari again in 2007 for his second full season of the Ferrari Challenge. In May of that year, he nabbed his first career win at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. Tucker then created his Level 5 Motorsports team in 2008, entering the FC series as both owner and driver. He took his Ferrari to the top six times in the 13-race season and finished second overall in the final drivers’ standings, and then won both of the two North American races at World Finals. Tucker took a Ferrari V8 Crawford GT to four Rolex Sports Car Series races in the same season. In 2009, Tucker won 10 races, which made him the winningest driver in Ferrari Challenge’s history. His Boardwalk Ferrari team won the Dealer’s Championship.

When Tucker decided to pursue even more prestigious racing events, including the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup and the American Le Mans Series, he knew his increasing opportunities were in part thanks to his success with Ferrari. Not only that, but he still loved racing Ferraris. So to ditch his Ferrari career after finding so much success in the series was never an option. Even as he added four additional series to his racing schedule, along with cutting-edge supercars in the Le Mans Prototype classes, Ferrari always made the list, too. Tucker has raced in up to four different races in a single race weekend to accommodate all of his commitments.

In 2010, Tucker began a partnership with Ferrari to test and develop its new 599XX for the 2011 season. Tucker’s new No. 55 Ferrari 599XX improved the mechanics, technical specifications, technology and speed of its predecessors. The fact that he not only raced for Ferrari while racing in four other series but also spent time creating a new car with the program is testament to Tucker’s solid ties to Ferrari. Without Ferrari, he might never have ignited an engine on the race track, and he isn’t ignorant to the fact. As his schedule permits, he will continue to race in the Ferrari Challenge series just as he did five years ago.

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Tucker’s new Honda isn’t the first cutting-edge set of wheels he’s had

Level 5 Motorsports owner Scott Tucker isn’t just a professional sports car driver; he’s a sports car man, by nature drawn to the powerful engines and maneuverability of the fastest cars on the planet. In fact, before he raced professionally, Tucker built a veritable sports car museum in his Leawood, Kansas home.

Now that he is on the circuit, Tucker’s passion for racecars is less so diminished than it is amplified. Tucker has quickly accepted every opportunity to get behind the wheel of the latest and greatest productions from some of the highest regarded manufacturers in the industry. Tucker’s latest acquisition, a cost-capped chassis by Honda Performance Development and Wirth Research, made an exciting debut last weekend at the American Le Mans Series Monterey at Mazda Laguna Seca Raceway in Monterey, Calif. The car, which sports modifications allowing for greater increases in speed than its older LMP2 counterparts, ran like a charm and delivered on its promises with the talented Level 5 drivers behind the wheel. The HPD ARX-01g was fresh out of the box for its motorsports debut because Tucker had reserved the first two models out of production for his team, which also comprises Luis Diaz and Christophe Bouchut.

Ever the proactive team owner, Tucker keeps his finger on the pulse of motorsports innovation, development and production. He had been following the Honda prototype’s testing and specifications closely before he decided it would be worth switching to the new model in the middle of the current season. But the HPD ARX-01g is hardly the first time Tucker’s driven on the cutting edge of racing vehicles. His lifelong interest in the cars has translated into a unique facet to his professional racing career as owner and driver for his Madison, Wisc.-based team: As much as he’s driving the cars, he’s scouting them, too.

Tucker began his sports car racing career with Ferrari in 2006 at the age of 44. As he got a feel for the track, he began making podium appearances, finishing first at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif., by the 2007 season, his second full season. Even as he created Level 5 Motorsports in 2008 and began building a superteam of elite drivers with a heavier focus on ALMS, ILMC and Grand-Am competition, Tucker was committed to the Ferrari Challenge series. Since last year, he has contributed to Ferrari North America in testing and developing the Ferrari 599XX for the 2011 season. With a focus on technology, mechanical and technical features and clever design applied in a modern way, Tucker and the Ferarri team developed a car Tucker himself was excited to drive. “The gas pedal is real sensitive on that thing,” Tucker said. “There’s just so much power, you have to be gentle. It’s almost a 50/50 equal balance, and the way they’ve done it, it’s just a whole new generation of GT cars.”

Perhaps one of Tucker’s most envy-evoking moves, though, was to be the first American allowed behind the wheel of one of Audi’s multimillion-dollar, 200-mph diesel prototypes on a race track. Thanks in part to his connection with series veteran Bouchut, Tucker scored the driver’s seat in one of Audi’s R10 diesel prototypes in the 2010 24 Hours of Le Mans. And it wasn’t an easy task; in order to even qualify for the race, Tucker had to complete a minimum of 10 laps-the same amount as a driver’s stint in the actual race-and maintain speed at a certain percentage of the class’s fast time. Tucker took advantage of his historic opportunity and delivered a performance that got the world of motorsports talking about the middle-aged rookie from Leawood, Kansas that could drive with the best of them.

Tucker’s reputation for getting his hands on the wheels of some of the most impressive car in the industry is directly related to his unrelenting pursuit of victory-in his driver roster, vehicle quality and also his own development as a motorsports star. Still, at 48, Tucker reveals a sense of the man he was before he made his mark in sports racing. Although its performance is important to podium finishes and the Level 5 Motorsports LMP2 reputation, to Tucker, the HPD ARX-01g is ultimately one thing: another really cool car.

Scott Tucker, the entrepreneur, investor, and racing champion has been featured by almost every major media outlet. Racing’s One-in-a-Million Story at the Wall Street Journal

Useful Snowboarding Techniques To Train Your Muscle Memory

Muscle memory is exceedingly critical to executing techniques, so lets take a closer look and look at the simplest way we can train it better.

What on earth is muscle memory?

Muscle memory in considered the capability of our muscles to reproduce a series of movements. When you catch a ball, you are depending on your muscle memory. The same thing goes for implementing snowboarding movements.

If you spin a 360, you are instructing your muscles to have a look inside their memory banks and perform the different actions required to carry out a 360 spin.

Why is muscle memory significant?

Your muscles will retain whatever you teach them. Therefore, the better and more precise your muscle memory is, the more frequently you will manage to land your techniques.

1) Repetition

Your muscles need time to record the action of every manoeuvre. Much like how you were required to learn how to walk, your muscles have got to figure out how to snowboard. Each individual trick you want to master has to be repeated until your muscles can remember the movements.

The easiest way to get your muscles to remember, is to practice. Practice lots and practice often.

2) Good quality Technique

You want to teach your muscles to recall the right movements. Therefore should you discover a mistake in your methodology, go back and fix it. The longer you leave a fault, the longer it becomes part of your muscle memory.

You don’t want improper habits to develop into a part of your muscle memory, or you may well find yourself having a tough time eliminating them down the road.

3) Visualization

Picture your technique before carrying it out. Being able to close your eyes and visualize every movement is a vital step to making your muscles do the proper motions. Psychological training can be just as valuable as physical training.

Do not forget, work through every single step. This simply means if you’re picturing a 360 spin, you’d envision every little thing from nearing the jump to your setup turns along with your wind up, knee bend and release.

4) Turn it into a behavior

Before executing a manoeuvre, stop yourself and make an effort to come up with a routine that goes through every single step. Go from visualization to carrying out the manoeuvre exactly the same each time. Do everything exactly the same. Your goal is for your moves to become the same anytime you perform the same manoeuvres.

As an example: A typical habit for a lot of freestyle snowboarders is to stand at the start of a jump, envision what they’re about to do, take into consideration each action of the technique, then execute it.

Keep these snow travel tips in mind and land your tricks more consistently on your snow travel holidays.

How To Ride A Snowboard In Deep Snow

Powder days are ahead, so here are several quick techniques for snowboarding in powder.

1) Unless you need to make a sudden turn, only use gentle pressure while turning in powder. Turning too hard could create excessive edge angle, which basically means your snowboard will burrow into the snow and you’ll wind up beneath 30 cm of powder, as opposed to on top.

Make an effort to have a light touch when turning.

2) A common mistake made when riding in powder is to lean past your snowboard’s nose, utilizing your upper body to initiate a turn. Don’t try this. This will dig your snowboard’s nose into the powder and result in you flying the wrong way up.

You want to always try to keep your body weight centered or a little bit towards the back of your snowboard. Use your hips, knees and ankles to execute most of the turning. Deep powder is comparable to surfing on water, you need to be riding on top of the snow while keeping your nose from digging in.

3) Speed is your friend. Powder will slow down your snowboard, so aim to keep your speed up. Speed will enable you to slash your way through the powder, and also stop you getting bogged down on flat runs.

Further hints and tips for gladed ski runs:

Riding deep powder in trees is very hard. It’s among the list of toughest skills to perfect, so don’t be disheartened if you find yourself getting stuck. Here are some ideas for riding in gladed runs.

1) Your whole body follows where your head turns. Consequently, when you look at trees, you’ll find yourself riding into a tree. Due to this fact, you should continually be looking at the gaps in between the trees.

2) Never go fast within a gladed run, if you don’t know the area. Always conduct a slower run to understand the ski run first. Gladed runs are quick and demand that you understand the area, so take some time to explore the run first.

3) The key reason why gladed runs are extremely difficult, is simply because you’re mixing sharp, rapid turns in powder, with an obstacle course. When you’re inside the gladed run, try to plan a couple of turns ahead of where you are. The more restrictive the trees, the more you have to be certain you know where to turn, if you wish to avoid running straight into a tree.

4) Gladed runs are usually full of ‘tree wells’, that are deep chambers of snow along at the base of a tree. They could be especially hazardous if you get wedged within them, especially if further snow drops from the tree branches and covers you up.

Always try to ride gladed runs with a companion and strive to keep within view of one another.

Stay safe and remember these tips on your snow trips and snow travel holidays.

5 Tips For Flying With Snowboard Equipment

Issues determining the simplest way for traveling with your ski/snowboard luggage? Allow me to share some tips which will make your process simpler.

1) If paying for an additional bag, ensure that it’s paid for as a sports bag and use all your supplementary weight allowance.

It isn’t uncommon for you to want to purchase an extra bag if you’re going for a longer ski vacation. In the event you purchase a supplementary bag, most airlines provide rate reductions when your additional bag is a snowboard bag. It’s generally about half of your regular supplementary bag fee.

Pay for your supplementary bag listed as being a snowboard bag, then fill it to the top. You are likely to only have about 15 kg of actual snowboard equipment, so look to find out how much weight is authorized inside your snowboard bag. Next, put clothes and other things you want, up to the point your snowboard bag hits the free allowance cap.

2) Print a copy of the luggage allowance policies

Be sure to bring a copy of the current baggage allowances whenever you fly on an airline. You will find that quite a few check in clerks will not even know their own baggage rules, particularly when you take advantage of discounts and other weight tricks with sports bags.

If they ever try to charge you extra, present them their own weight allowances, and don’t forget that whenever flying to/from international locations, you’re allowed to include bags based on international flight baggage limits. Don’t allow the airline to charge you domestic fare charges.

3) Don’t carry base cleaner, if you don’t want to lose it

Base cleaner could possibly get confiscated at the airport. Don’t bother to bring it! It’s flammable, so even if it gets beyond security scans, it’s unsafe to pack within your bags.

4) You should not pack any baggage over 32 kg (70 lbs)

It’s illegal for some airports to allow baggage over 32 kg, simply because of health and safety regulations for the baggage handlers. Don’t load any luggage over 32 kg or the airline may not let you check it in, even if you offer to pay for any additional weight.

5) Ensure you get luggage and receipts labeled for your last destination

When flying on two or more flights, most notably international to domestic transfers, always get your baggage tagged all the way to your last destination. Any time you check in at the first flight, ensure you tell them to ticket your baggage all the way through up to your final destination, and check that any additional luggage or overweight costs you’ve paid has every destination listed on the receipt.

Check in staff may well try to charge you additional fines at your various other destinations in the event your first flight check in forgot to tag your bags for the entire journey. It is far from an enjoyable discussion to have and you may end up trying to consult a supervisor to have it fixed, so avert missed tagging whenever you can.

Stay safe on your snow travel holiday and don’t let injury ruin your snow travels.

Golden Island In The Adriatic Sea

The island Krk is the largest island in the Adriatic Sea. Krk is the northernmost island in the Mediterranean Sea. Island is surrounded by the Vinodolski channel to the east, Rijeka Bay to the northwest and Kvarneric to the southwest side.

The coastline of the Island Krk contains numerous bays, natural harbours, caves and beaches. The island has a mild Mediterranean climate. Geographical position and diversity of natural and cultural sites are some of the reasons why the island was named “Golden Island” in the antique.

There is a bridge that connects the island Krk with the continental Croatia. Kraljevica Town is where the bridge begins.

The central and western part of the island are covered with forest, cultivated Mediterranean fruit and vegetables, vineyards and olive fields while the northern and southern part of the island are covered with rocky ground and pasture. The specificities of the island landscape are dry stone walls.

You can find healing mud on the island, precisely on the western side of Klimno Bay. Lots of people are satisfied with the healing effect of mud on their skin. The beach in Klimno Bay is very popular because of the mud that you can smear on your body. That mud will make you feel the atmosphere of an exotic vacation. That healing mud people mostly use for bone ache.

The beach is very shallow. You can walk hounded meters and the water will still be just below your knees.

Probably the best way to explore the island is by boat. While sailing, you can swim in different bay each day. You will be delighted with the green promenades and numerous hidden bays and beaches. Some of the beaches can only be reached from the seaside.

There are a lot of interesting towns and villages on the island. There are also some marvelous natural beauties on the island. One of them is Biserujka Cave. According to the legend, the Biserujka Cave was named by the treasure which was found in it. The treasure belonged to the local pirates.

Krk is a marvelous island that will delight all your senses. Swimming in the crystal clear sea and yachting around the island will provide a perfect holiday.

Discover Croatian Yachting experience and start thinking about your next vacation. Sailing in Croatia will provide unforgettable experience for you and make you relax and enjoy one of the most beautiful places for sailing.

The Gold Coast Magic Millions Festival can be Pleasurable for everybody

The Australian Gold Coast will be the yearly January location with regard to the renowned Magic Millions Yearling auctions. This specific thorough horse event covers 10 days of activities, social events as well as auctions and reaches its peak during the official competition day.

There is also the main race which is the $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic held over 1200 metres and is open only to horses sold during the Sales. The sales and race day events have now established themselves as a must see event for all serious industry participants. As would be expected horse racing and thoroughbred sales are dependant on each other and this event has an international reputation as the place to buy world quality thoroughbreds.

The markets at the moment are organised during the year and also around Australia within sites including the Gold Coast, Adelaide and also Launceston. The sales draw in horses which seem heading for triumph. The actual operators of the event pride themselves for offering an outstanding horse at great rates. It must be observed that a great many of the offerings draw in significant price tags yet there are numerous others marketed for as low as several thousand, of even hundreds of dollars, drastically under that which the event brand may possibly imply.

The compilation of competitions which you’ll find organised throughout the nation offer a comprehensive prize pool close to $4 million and tend to be opened only to auction sale thoroughbreds. In reality the complete organisation racing schedule around the Gold Coast is offered solely to entitled entrants. Typically the events nationally will be held in venues like Adelaide, Toowoomba, Perth, Tasmania and also Wyong.

These kinds of auctions have provided seven in the last ten winners in the Golden Slipper which includes: Phelan Ready on 2009, Sebring in 2008, Stratum in 2005, Dance Hero in 2004, Polar Success in 2003, Ha Ha in 2001 and Belle du Jour in 2000 all purchased by their new owners within the Gold Coast.

The very first auction happened throughout 1986 having a catalogue of two hundred and twenty horses being sold under the auction. Through that very first auction there were 4 runners in the actual 1987 Golden Slipper race, those being Snippets, Mother Duck, Prince Anton as well as Boasting. The very first auction had been regarded as an enormous success. The typical cost of thirty-thousand-dollars ended up being clearly over targets plus some leading horses come about out of this in addition to future Magic Millions auctions.

You’ll find much more about the actual Magic Millions by visiting their own established website where you are able to obtain the latest auction list. The actual sale lists are readily available around 6 weeks prior to every auction and supply considerable information about the actual family members of every horse provided.

Any person can easily be present at an event and seating is unrestricted. These are general public sales and you are therefore welcome to bid upon any of the offerings, providing you provide the funding required. You happen to be somewhat free to consult staff to get a yearling away from it’s enclosure for assessment by you and your family, your advisor or perhaps your own veterinarian. After the sale starts, about in excess of twenty yearlings might be marketed hourly.

If you’re planning on going to the actual Yearling Sales as well as racing around the Queensland Gold Coast then make sure to reserve your own Gold Coast overnight accommodation early on. The sale is typically presented around January which is a lively period for motels, apartments as well as other short term accommodations.

Jane Boyd is in fact an associate of the well recognised Gold Coast article author Bailey Jamieson. Jane turns her attention to travels and sights within the district and also composing regular opinions on deluxe Gold Coast accommodation and other Queensland regional family trip hot spots. Jane is a mother of two little children and her reviews frequently reflect her love for family friendly vacations.

Surf the Bahamas

The practice of riding ocean waves while standing or kneeling on a board began with the ancient Polynesian culture. Mark Twain witnessed the aboriginal peoples of Hawaii surfing in 1866, but perhaps the first instance of Europeans seeing the sport was in Tahiti in 1767. There are several variations now, of course. Some surfers use longboards, some use tinyboards, others like paddleboarding and the purists like to stick to body surfing, where there is no board at all.

Surfers like big swells, the size of which is determined by two elements. When wind blows along an open surface of water, building up a swell, it is called the wind’s fetch. When the strength of the wind and fetch are both strong, a large swell is created. Therefore, powerful oceanic winds coming off the Pacific and Atlantic provide excellent conditions for surfing. Of course the surface beneath the sea also plays a large part in the size and shape of swells. Sandy seabeds can change on a weekly basis, and this is where advanced technology makes surf forecasting possible. Satellite imagery and mathematical graphing help researchers map the size and direction of swells for surfers, boaters, and other water sport enthusiasts.

The Bahamas are situated in the Atlantic Ocean just southeast of the Florida panhandle and directly north of Cuba. The 29 islands, 661 cays and 2387 islets that make up the Bahamas, plus its location directly on the Atlantic Ocean make it a haven for surfers. The long expanse of water allows the opportunity for a large fetch, and the rocky topography means frequent waves and large swells. In addition, east coast regions are notorious for receiving heavy winter swells. Low pressure cells from out at sea and are kept immobile by slow moving high – also called the anticyclone. The fetch becomes short, but since the anticyclone has been generating slow power, the swell becomes larger.

The topography immediately beneath the breaking wave is the most important aspects of its shape. Natural and artificial reefs can mean the difference between a flat, irregular surf venue and a reliable favourite. Unfortunately the consistency of the seabed can also mean the difference between a minor or major injury if thrown off a board. When a surfer falls while riding a wave, the force of the water will toss them downwards. If the seabed is rocky, the injury can be quite serious and even fatal. Low tide produces an even greater risk.

The Bahamas offers a tropical climate, long beaches, epic swells, friendly people and beautiful scenery. For experienced surfers, the islands are a great place to practice a favourite hobby. For the newbie surfer, it may be a good idea to stay close to the shore and avoid those 2387 rocky islets.

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