Auto Racing
Brian France, Richard Petty

NASCAR allows franchise system to give team owners value

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — NASCAR announced a dramatic overhaul of its business model Tuesday, shifting to a franchise-like system that is intended to provide actual value and financial stability to team owners after decades of heavy reliance on sponsors.

The change gets away from the independent contractor model that had been used since NASCAR's 1948 inception. A car owner was responsible for all the financial obligations to race each week, depending on sponsorship to help foot the bills. When a sponsor pulled its funding, a car owner could go broke and be left with nothing but racing equipment.

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Formula One News

Manor F1 gives 1st seat to German driver Pascal Wehrlein

BANBURY, England (AP) — Manor Racing has selected German driver Pascal Wehrlein for the Formula One season, which starts next month at the Australian Grand Prix.

The 21-year-old Wehrlein is keen to fulfill his promise after impressing in testing as a reserve driver with Mercedes, behind the dominant pair of world champion Lewis Hamilton and runner-up Nico Rosberg.

The team said in a statement on Wednesday that Wehrlein will try out Manor's MRTO5 car at pre-season testing in Barcelona later this month and again in early March.