di Resta’s manager admits future is uncertain

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Paul di Resta’s manager has revealed that his client’s future in Formula One is uncertain due to the growing presence of pay drivers that could cause Force India to drop the Scot for 2014.

di Resta has failed to score any points in the last six races, retiring from four due to a combination of poor luck and driver error. However, he explained in Singapore that he was still confident of driving for Force India in 2014 after a strong start to the season, but manager Richard Goddard was less confident speaking to journalists earlier this week.

“It’s difficult to know what will happen next year,” he explained. “There are a lot of drivers in the sport with money, and there are a lot of teams that need money. It is not just outright talent that gets you a seat in the car any more.”

However, Goddard is hoping that Force India stick to their stance of prioritizing ability and pace instead of financial gain.

“Force India have always been very fair in that they have tended to put outright talent in the car, and they haven’t looked to a driver to bring in income, which is great,” he said. “That’s because they are well funded by a couple of individuals and corporations who are able to do that, and hopefully they will carry on doing that.”

di Resta debuted for Force India in 2011, and he scored his career-best finish of fourth at this year’s Bahrain Grand Prix. Although the Scot’s recent form has been far from impressive, his string of top-ten finishes in the first half of the year will have to be considered.

Nico Hulkenberg, Pastor Maldonado and Max Chilton have all been linked to di Resta’s seat, but Force India are yet to confirm when a decision will be made.

NHRA: Brittany Force cleared to race this weekend in Phoenix after bad wreck 2 weeks ago

Photo: John Force Racing
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Drag racing is a Force family tradition. So, too, is not keeping a Force family member down.

Just 12 days after the most serious wreck of her six-year drag racing career, Brittany Force and John Force Racing announced late Thursday afternoon that the defending 2017 NHRA Top Fuel champion has been medically cleared and will indeed race in this weekend’s NHRA Arizona Nationals at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in suburban Phoenix, Arizona.

“I flew into Phoenix early this (Thursday) morning and headed straight out to the race track to meet up with my team,” Force said. “I suited up and got belted back into my car that I ran all last season.

“It honestly felt good to be strapped back in and I was surprised how comfortable I was. I’m looking forward to getting back in my car tomorrow (Friday’s first two rounds of qualifying) and getting back in the swing of things with my guys.”

The 31-year-old Force, one of four daughters of 16-time NHRA Funny Car champ John Force, suffered a concussion and bruising after the hard crash she was involved in on February 11 in the first round of eliminations of the season-opening NHRA Lucas Oil Winternationals in Pomona, California.

Shortly after leaving the starting line in a race vs. Terry Haddock, Force’s dragster crossed from the right to left lanes, impacted the retaining wall with a very hard lateral crash, bounced off, spun, went on its side and briefly caught fire after crossing the finish line wheels-up.

While she is still recovering from the bruising, Force feels strong enough to get back behind the wheel. Getting back in the race car could be the best medicine of all, since she has three runner-up finishes in Phoenix, including back-to-back second-place showings in both the 2016 and 2017 national events.

The three-day event kicks off Friday with qualifying rounds at 4 and 6:30 p.m. ET, the same times as Saturday’s qualifying. Final eliminations begin at 1 p.m. ET Sunday.