December 1992

02.12.92 - Rallying
World champion Carlos Sainz will drive for Lancia next season after four years with the Toyota team. He said the split with Toyota was amicable and followed the ending of their sponsorship agreement with oil company Repsol. The Spanish firm will now back Lancia for 1993, a decisive factor in the 30-year-old's switch. Sainz, who clinched the world title by winning last month's Lombard RAC Rally, expects Finn Juha Kankkunen to take over in the Japanese team.

04.12.92 - F1 Testing at Estoril

Thursday times:
                           mins secs
 1 D Hill       Williams    1:13.60
 2 JJ Lehto     Sauber      1:14.33
 3 A Prost      Williams    1:14.47
 4 M Schumacher Benetton    1:15.69
 5 J Alesi      Ferrari     1:17.16
 6 R Patrese    Benetton    1:18.21
 7 J Alesi      Ferrari     1:18.76

09.12.92 - F1
Nigel Mansell has travelled to Bologna to receive his Golden Helmet award. The Formula One champion again stressed he has had no second thoughts about quitting F1 for IndyCars.

Next year's French Grand Prix could be scrapped because of a law banning cigarette advertising. FISA chiefs are set to discuss the issue at a meeting on Friday.

10.12.92 - F1
Next year's French Grand Prix has been wiped off the world championship calendar because of France's anti-tobacco laws. FISA president Max Mosley said the French Motor Sports Federation was unable to guarantee the free movement of F1 cars in the area. He confirmed that the Magny-Cours race, scheduled for July 4, had been removed from the calendar. Germany's Nurburgring has emerged as a contender to stage 1993's cancelled race.

Nigel Mansell has dismissed speculation that he can compete in both IndyCar racing and Formula One next season. Mansell said in an interview with the BBC: "It's just not possible. Maybe Superman can do it, but I'm certainly not Superman. All I know is that I am driving IndyCars next year. For the future and F1 anything can happen I guess."

"Speculation has been rife but I have a very solid contract in America and that's where I'll be."

INDYCAR:- Four-times Indianapolis 500 winner Rick Mears will not be among Nigel Mansell's Indy-car rivals next year after announcing his retirement. The 41-year-old won 29 races during his career and amassed earnings of over $11 million.

F1:- Britian's Nigel Mansell said an emotional farewell to motor racing when he collected his Formula One world drivers' champion trophy. The FIA's annual prize-giving ceremony in Paris was dominated by British winners, with Derek Warwick and the BBC scooping other awards. Mansell, who has quit Formula One for IndyCar racing said: "I don't know if I will stand before you all again, but you never know do you?" He added: "It was a wonderful year, but a bit sad the way it ended."

AWARDS: BBC SPORTS PERSONALITY OF YEAR: Formula One drivers' world champion Nigel Mansell won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award. Mansell beat off the challenge of Olympic Gold medallists Linford Christie and Sally Gunnell, voted second and third respectively. Mansell becomes only the second person to win the award twice, emulating boxer Henry Cooper.

RALLYING:- The Ivory Coast Rally has been axed from next year's world championship by FISA because of poor organisation, it was announced on Sunday.

F1:- Damon Hill is set to be confirmed as the new team-mate to Frenchman Alain Prost in the Canon-Williams Formula One racing team. Hill, the son of two-times world champion Graham Hill, has been the team's official test driver for the last two seasons. The team are expected to make the announcement on Monday afternoon at their Didcot headquarters. Hill has driven in only two Grands Prix, both for the Brabham team, at Silverstone and Budapest.

F1:- Damon Hill will take Nigel Mansell's place in the Williams team in next year's Formula One world championship. The 32-year-old son of double world champion Graham Hill was confirmed as Alain Prost's teammate by team boss Frank Williams. Hill said: "This is an opportunity I have worked for and I would like to thank Frank Williams and the team for putting their faith in me." Williams said: "I am very happy to repay him for his efforts."

Damon Hill said he was thrilled to take Nigel Mansell's place in the Williams team and was looking forward to the challenge next year. "It is a quite incredible car with an incredible suspension and the speed seems as if you're flying." He went on: "My guiding light has been the story of how my father made it from nothing and never had any help from anyone. I know the pressures, and I don't expect to be seen as the next Mansell, but the first Damon Hill."

F1:- Ukyo Katayama will drive for Tyrrell in next year's Formula One world championship. He made his F1 debut this year with Larousse. Tyrrell will announce his partner before Christmas.

Next season's opening Formula One Grand Prix in South Africa will still go ahead despite liquidation proceedings against the owners of the Kyalami track, circuit manager Dave McGregor has said.

TOURING CARS:- Following FISA's decision to hold the European Grand Prix at Donington over Easter the Touring Car calendar has been revised. This includes a round supporting the European Grand Prix which remains provisional. Apart from the Donington date the calendar is now confirmed. If the Easter Sunday race goes ahead the series will be run over 17 rounds. BMW, Mazda, Nissan, Peugeot, Renault and Vauxhall are already confirmed.


March 28       Silverstone
April 11       Donington +
May 3          Snetterton
May 16         Donington
May 31         Oulton Park
June 13        Brands Hatch
June 27        Pembrey
July 11        Silverstone
July 25        Knockhill *
August 8       Oulton Park
August 22      Brands Hatch
August 30      Thruxton
September 12   Donington *
September 19   Silverstone
* Double header
F3:- Oliver Gavin will drive for the Edenbridge Racing team in Formula 3 in 1993 after finishing runner-up in the Formula Vauxhall Lotus Championship this year.

RALLY:- Cumbrian rally driver Dave Metcalfe has been killed in a road accident near his home. His Opel Calibra rally car was involved in a three-vehicle crash on the A6 between Kendall and Penrith.

RALLY:- Rally driver Dave Metcalfe has been killed in a road accident. Metcalfe, 35, drove for Vauxhall Motors since the mid-80s and was regarded as one of Europe's leading front-wheel-drive experts. The Cumbrian driver gave the 16v Astra GTE its World Championship debut on the 1988 Lombard RAC Rally and was a popular competitor in the British round, twice finishing 14th. The accident, involving three cars, happened on the A6 on Wednesday. He leaves a wife and two children.

F1:- The 1993 French Formula One Grand Prix may go ahead after assurances that cars carrying tobacco advertising will not be impounded. The International Motor Sports Federation (FISA) cancelled the race last week because of fears that cars would be seized. They are now waiting for a report from the French federation before reassessing the situation.

F1:- Britain's Mark Blundell is set to drive for the Ligier team in 1993. The French team is expected to announce their decision in January with his teammate likely to be either Erik Comas of Eric Bernard. The 26-year-old drove for Brabham in 1991 with his only points coming from sixth place in the Belgian Grand Prix. He spent last season test-driving for McLaren.

INDYCAR:- Nigel Mansell will start his new Indy Car career in one of the safest cars ever built, according to car manufacturers Lola. The new chassis was unveiled at the company's Huntingdon base before its departure to Chicago. It is the first to be built under the new stricter safety laws introduced after a driver was killed and Nelson Piquet severely injured in this year's Indy 500. Mansell begins testing in Phoenix, Arizona on January 4.

F1:- Mark Blundell is poised to sign for the French Formula One team Ligier next season. There are just a few matters to be tied up, such as Blundell's testing contract with McLaren. The 26-year-old Royston-based driver said: "The deal is 99 per cent sorted out. If everything goes to plan I should be on the grid in Kyalami next season. I hope to have my first test in the car in the middle of January," added Blundell, who raced for the Brabham-Yamaha team during 1991.