Sutil leads early on Silverstone Friday test

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The early leader in the third day of the young driver test in Silverstone is, like yesterday, not a “young driver” but instead one of the current 22 on the Formula One grid: Force India’s Adrian Sutil. The German has turned in a best lap of 1:33.421 thus far.

Three other race drivers had time in the morning session with Felipe Massa turning laps for Ferrari, Jean-Eric Vergne for Toro Rosso and Giedo van der Garde in the Caterham.

Carlos Sainz Jr. led the young driver contingent as could be expected given he’s in a Red Bull. Nicolas Prost is back for Lotus on the day Kimi Raikkonen had been planned to drive.

Four other testers posting laps this morning included Kimiya Sato (Sauber), Susie Wolff (Williams), Gary Paffett (McLaren) and Rodolfo Gonzalez (Marussia).

Wolff, notably, is the first female tester in F1 since Maria de Villota last year for Marussia. De Villota’s straight line tests, unfortunately, ended with an accident that produced serious head and facial injuries.

A female driver last attempted to qualify for a Grand Prix in 1992. Giovanna Amati made three attempts for Brabham that year but did not qualify.

More to follow later this afternoon.

BMW confirms IMSA, WEC GTE line-ups for 2018

BMW Motorsport
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BMW has confirmed its driver line-ups for the 2018 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and 2018/19 FIA World Endurance Championship campaigns.

In an announcement made at its end-of-year Sports Trophy event on Friday night, BMW firmed up its roster across its factory WEC team and its customer RLL Racing IMSA squad.

Two of the 2018 BMW M8 GTEs will enter the WEC next year, joining a hotly-contested GTE-Pro class that already features Ferrari, Porsche, Aston Martin and Ford.

BMW factory drivers Antonio Felix da Costa, Nick Catsburg, Augusto Farfus and Martin Tomczyk will share the two cars across the 13-month ‘super season’.

The quartet will be joined by Tom Blomqvist, Alexander Sims and Philipp Eng for the 24 Hours of Le Mans

In IMSA, the RLL Racing team will once again field Sims and John Edwards, who will be joined by the incoming Connor De Phillippi and Jesse Krohn.

BMW also confirmed on Friday night that Tom Blomqvist would see out the Formula E season with its Andretti-affiliated team, having been benched for Kamui Kobayashi in Hong Kong.