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  • Ecclestone’s mother-in-law kidnapped for ransom – reports

    Formula One head Bernie Ecclestone's mother-in-law has been kidnapped in Brazil. According to Brazilian magazine Veja and other reports, Aparecida Schunck (67) was kidnapped in Interlagos, with the captors demanding a ransom of 120 million reals (US$36-million). Schunck is the mother of Fabiana Flosi, who met Ecclestone at the 2009 Brazilian Grand Prix and married him in 2012. If paid, the ransom could be the biggest ever paid in Brazil. Unfortunately, the Ecclestone family is no stranger to plots of this nature. In 2012, Martin Peckham was jailed for demanding £200 000 from Ecclestone to prevent daughter Tamara from being kidnapped. Peckham, a dental technician, claimed that he...

  • The new Ford Figo: beware the lag

    When Ford first launched the Figo into the South African market back in 2010, it was pretty clear that it had VW's Polo Vivo firmly in its sights. Even the formula was the same: a cheap, basic car based on an older version of an existing model and rebadged. But after a week in the newest Figo, I'm not so sure that's the case any more. Between the looks, features, and tech, you get the feeling that the current Figo is aimed less at the "I can afford a new car too" market and more at the kind off...

  • BREAKING: SA race driver Gugu Zulu dies on Kilimanjaro trip

    South African race driver Gugu Zulu has died before the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. Zulu and wife Letshego were taking part in Trek4Mandela, an initiative by the Nelson Mandela Foundation that sees several people climb Kilimanjaro to raise funds. "It is with a heavy heart that we announce that one of the climbers on the Trek4Mandela, Gugu Zulu lost his life early this morning in his attempt to summit Kilimanjaro," the Nelson Mandela Foundation announced in a statement. The foundation added that not much was known about the circumstances surrounding his death just yet. "Details are sketchy. What we do know is that Gugu...

  • What should you expect from the SA Festival of Motoring?

    The SA Festival of Motoring aims to become the biggest motoring show in South Africa, establishing itself as SA's official motoring show. Its roots lie deep within its predecessors, Auto Africa and the Johannesburg International Motor Show. The refurbished Kyalami Raceway, which has held many historic races, will now play host to the festival. The show will include on-the-spot test-drives, performance demos and experiential exhibits. It will also celebrate the first car to land on South African shores 120 years ago, the Benzo Velo which was imported by local businessman John Percy Hess. The SA Festival of Motoring will also include dedicated...

  • Who will replace Chris Evans at Top Gear?

    The reboot of the critically acclaimed Top Gear has quickly come to an end. Not more than six episodes have aired since it went on a break early this month. The show has had a decline in views since its revival, from 4.3 million viewers initially to 2.68 million viewers last month. Many credited the decline in numbers to host Chris Evans, with social media users posting about how the previous seasons became more than just the cars they showcased, focusing on the witty trio that presented them. Chris Evans, the top draft pick for the Top Gear hosting position, resigned just days after...

  • What’s new and overhauled in F1 2016 video game?

    Codemasters has quite the motorsports pedigree and its previous F1 games were rather fantastic. So some people were rather disappointed with the way F1 2015, the first current-gen F1 game, turned out. It wasn't necessarily a bad game by any stretch, but fans lamented the loss of features compared to previous entries. Fortunately, F1 2016 looks like it's on the right track (heh) at the very least. So here's what you should expect from the new game, which is set for an August release. Upping the simulator ante The latest F1 title seems to be going all-out in an attempt to win over...

  • Here are the winningest British drivers of the British Grand Prix

    Winning your home race is always a moment to savour, but the British Grand Prix is also rather special, being the first Grand Prix ever run in F1's history. Either way, winning the British Grand Prix as a Brit is something you won't soon forget, but who are the most successful drivers to do so? Jim Clark (1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1967) Praised for his smooth driving style, F1 legend Jim Clark made an indelible mark on the sport before his passing, winning two world championships. However, Clark also holds the record for the most overall British Grand Prix wins (albeit tied with Alain...

  • Have you ever seen a championship decided due to fastest lap?

    The final event on the Formula E calendar took place at London's Battersea Park, featuring a double-header that took the championship down to the wire. The second race of the weekend and the final race of the season, saw Renault's Sebastian Buemi and Audi Sport Abt's Lucas di Grassi tied on 153 points apiece. Unfortunately, di Grassi rear-ended Buemi's car on the first lap, knocking the rear wing off the Renault e.dams car and damaging the front of Di Grassi's car in the process. If the race ended there, di Grassi would be the winner due having more third place finishes - both were tied on victories and...

  • Did you know these neat tech features are in the new Astra? [Sponsored]

    We've already looked at its drastic weight cut and the practical safety features, but the new Opel Astra packs far more punch than that. In fact, the new car is bristling with high-tech tools so we looked at a few of the more prominent cutting-edge features. Who knew a camera could do this? The Opel Eye is essentially a front-facing camera that looks out onto the road ahead, but why would you want this sort of thing in your car? For starters, the Opel Eye is capable of reading traffic signs, warning you about speed limits and no-passing zones by displaying them in the instrument panel. The...

  • 5 crazy F1 team order controversies of recent memory

    It's Grand Prix week, and the F1 circus is moving to the Red Bull Ring for the Austrian Grand Prix on Sunday. The scene of quite a few exciting races, the track is perhaps best known for hosting an infamous team order debacle. So this made us think of several other team order controversies in F1 history. Mika Hakkinen and David Coulthard (Australia 1998) The season-opening Grand Prix in 1998 showed us a McLaren that was truly in a class of its own, having hired Adrian Newey in 1997. In fact, Coulthard and Hakkinen finished a lap ahead of everyone else. Hakkinen, who was leading the race, relinquished the...

  • Ford Ranger Wildtrak: a big bakkie that fits in everywhere

    When Ford told me I'd be spending a week in the Ranger Wildtrak, I wasn't entirely sure how I felt. On the one hand, I've always fancied myself as the kind of person who could own a big bakkie. On the other, I live and work in areas of Cape Town which have plenty of very narrow roads and very little off-street parking. Usually that makes driving anything bigger than a compact SUV more than a little challenging. But in the Wildtrak, I felt entirely in control. You see, while this beast of a double cab is most at...

  • An app to manage NASCAR races is actually a thing

    Yeah yeah, every time I see a "X business benefits from Microsoft cloud" headline, I throw up a little. But I like motorsport, so when Microsoft outlined its work with NASCAR, my attention was piqued somewhat. The Redmond company has produced Mobile Inspection and Race Management apps for the racing series, making for some rather interesting changes in the pitlane. An easier way to officiate? The latter is the newest app, being designed for race organisers and officials to keep abreast of the action. "The race management app collects live video feeds and transponder data from the cars around the track. For the first time, officials have live,...

  • VISION NEXT 100: Rolls-Royce reveals its first autonomous ‘floating’ car

    Rolls-Royce unveiled its vision of future automotive luxury at the Roundhouse in London last week, a fully autonomous spectacle of opulence called the “103EX”. The self-driving car was designed by Giles Taylor and his team as part of the VISION NEXT 100, a range of imaginative car concepts that not only celebrated BMW’s centenary birthday but aimed to envision what the next hundred years of car evolution will look like. “Rolls-Royce 103EX is our first ever vision vehicle, and embodies just one of the endless possibilities that awaits. A personalised icon for the future, providing a sanctuary of calm in...

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