High Octane news

DEAN McNULTY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:14 PM ET

The documents handing over ownership to the artistically successful Honda Indy Edmonton will be signed by Friday, a source close to the deal told the Toronto Sun on Tuesday.

Although the event has drawn near sell-outs since its inception back in 2005, it has been a huge drain on the city-run Northlands group that promoted the event.

The new promoters will be the Octane group out of Montreal, which currently operates the Formula One Canadian Grand Prix and the NASCAR Nationwide Series NAPA 200, both at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

“I understand that the deal (for three years starting in 2011) will be completed within three days,” a source, who is intimately involved in both the Honda Indy Toronto and Honda Indy Edmonton, said.

And Michael Andretti, owner of Andretti Autosport that fields four IZOD IndyCar teams, described the Edmonton deal in a telephone interview Tuesday as the “best news he had all week.”

Andretti said he had heard the rumours that the promoters were having difficulties so he was pleased to hear that Octane would be running the show going forward.

“Racing in Canada has been such a great boost for IndyCar racing generally,” Andretti said. “It’s great to know that we’ll have at least two races in Canada next season.”

Andretti’s sly reference to “at least two” IndyCar Canadian events was based on comments made earlier this month by new Indy Racing League boss Randy Bernard where he confirmed he is “in discussions” with promoters to race in Calgary and Quebec City, hopefully by 2012.

First loser

In NASCAR parlance, finishing second is being “the first loser.”

So when Carl Edwards appeared genuinely happy about his second-place finish in the LifeLock.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway on Saturday, it had more to do with the new FR9 engine his No. 99 Roush-Fenway Racing Ford delivering horsepower than actually winning.

In fact, Ford teams have had such a miserable Sprint Cup season with no wins, that Edwards’ feat was being celebrated across the NASCAR garage by all blue oval teams.

“Second is bittersweet. You want to win, but we are obviously very happy with the result” Edwards said. “If we continue to run this fast each week, we will win plenty of races.”

With the Sprint Cup season now officially half over, it’s about time for the new FR9 to deliver some wins not just good tries.

Finish lines

The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Jumpstart 100 will be televised live on Saturday afternoon on TSN. That marks a first for the third-year Canadian national stock car racing series ... What the heck has happened to defending NASCAR Camping World Series champion Ron Hornaday? He’s winless so far in 2010. Last year at this time the whole racing world was taking about his five-race winning streak. Hornaday has never gone this far into a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season without a win ... Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Just two seasons removed from the turmoil between Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton on his McLaren’s squad, team boss Nick Fry is lecturing Red Bull over its feuding drivers Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel. “They are beating themselves,” Fry told Autosport magazine.

dean.mcnulty@sunmedia.ca


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