In the round-up: McLaren team principal Andrea Stella says his team cannot afford complacency in its fight for fourth place in the championship with Aston Martin.
Even great teams trip up in F1 – Stella
McLaren has slashed its deficit to fourth-placed Aston Martin from 102 points to 11 in the last three rounds. But Stella says the team will not take its success for granted, pointing out how easily Ferrari and Mercedes missed out on significant points hauls in Qatar.
“We stay very, very grounded,” said Stella. “We saw how marginal things are. We saw what happened with Mercedes, like what happened with Ferrari who didn’t even start.”
Lewis Hamilton retired on the first lap of the Qatar Grand Prix after colliding with his Mercedes team mate George Russell, while Carlos Sainz Jnr’s Ferrari failed to start due to a fuel leak.
“This is not because they are not great teams with great drivers,” Stella continued, “this is because the sport is very marginal. The best thing you can do is just stay focussed, humble and keep delivering. And then, like I say, we will see in Abu Dhabi.”
Ricciardo back in action for Red Bull
Daniel Ricciardo returned to the cockpit of a Formula 1 yesterday, performing a demonstration run for Red Bull in Nashville at the wheel of their 2011 championship-winning RB7. He has been out of action since breaking a bone in his left hand in a crash during practice for the Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort.
Sztuk wins Italian F4 title with a race to spare
Kacper Sztuka clinched the Italian Formula 4 championship with his eighth win of the season at Vallelunga yesterday. McLaren junior Ugo Ugochukwu ended Sztuka’s run of six consecutive race wins in the day’s opening encounter, but Sztkuka’s later triumph ensured he can’t be overhauled in today’s final race. While Ugochuckwu has totalled 277 points over the season, the series’ rules only allow drivers to score their 16 best results. That leaves him on 270, Sztuka out of range on 298.
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Motor racing links of interest:
Justiça anula condenação de Nelson Piquet por racismo contra Hamilton (Metropoles – Portuguese)
Nelson Piquet’s fine for using a racist expression to describe Lewis Hamilton has been overturned, but the case is expected to go to Brazil’s supreme court.
Kas Haverkort triumphs in Zandvoort’s first race and Martinius Stenshorne clinches rookie title (Formula Regional Europe)
‘The first race of the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine at Zandvoort delivered thrills both on and off the track. Today, history was written by Kas Haverkort, who became the first Dutch driver in the series to win on his home turf. Additionally, in the Netherlands, Martinius Stenshorne mathematically secured the Rookie title.’
Title rivals fall foul of FREC stewards at Zandvoort for unusual offences (Formula Scout)
‘Stenshorne received a reprimand for wearing a watch during the race, in contravention of the FIA International Sporting Code, Appendix L, Chapter 3, article 5, ‘which prohibits the wearing of any kind of jewellery, including bracelets or watches, during competition’.’
Plot twist: Miami Dolphins subsidiary helped pay for Mayor Suarez’s $30k F1 weekend (Miami Herald)
‘In the filing to the state ethics commission, Suarez reported receiving a single day-pass for the Saturday F1 qualifier race from South Florida Motorsports, LLC — the Miami Dolphins subsidiary and organiser of the Miami Grand Prix, which is based out of Ross’ Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens.’
The pressures of racing in Formula 2: expectation versus ambition (Formula 2)
Isack Hadjar: ‘I wouldn’t say having a rookie alongside me helped. I wish I had a more experienced team mate rather. I think it’s quite reassuring to have someone coming from F3 struggling like me.’
Think what we could do with Ecclestone’s taxes (The Guardian)
‘HMRC has just received an unexpected £652.6m windfall (Bernie Ecclestone given suspended sentence after pleading guilty to fraud, 12 October). Well that’s our schools’ estimated £150m Raac problem financed at a stroke, with the remaining £502.6m to be put towards refurbishing our increasingly dilapidated schools. Thank you, Mr Ecclestone.’
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Happy birthday to Fer No. 65, Sebastiaan Huizinga and Carlos!
On this day in motorsport