F1 Grand Prix of India - Race

Ricciardo eager to take on “best in the world” Vettel

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Daniel Ricciardo says he is eagerly anticipating the challenge of taking on Sebastian Vettel at Red Bull next year after his future team mate clinched his fourth world championship title.

“Four times in a row – phenomenal!” said Ricciardo.

“At the start of the season it looked like it could be anyone’s title shot but from the summer he’s not let anyone even look at the trophy.

“He’s just ran away with it. It’s very impressive and I can’t wait to have the best in the world as my team mate. That’s the real challenge and an opportunity for me to see how good I am. Hopefully I’ll be giving him a tough run for his money.”

Ricciardo finished tenth in India despite coming under pressure from Fernando Alonso in the closing stages. The Ferrari driver was struggling with damage.

Ricciardo said he chose to start the race on the harder tires as the team split their strategy between their two drivers.

“I started the race on the prime tire and JEV [Jean-Eric Vergne] took the option,” said Ricciardo. “For me, that’s a mix of personal choice and team strategy.”

I wanted to start on the prime and when we’re both outside the top ten and there isn’t a clear way to go, the team often splits the strategy to give us the best chance of getting at least one car into the points. Usually the guy who qualifies better gets the choice and in India that was me – though I don’t think JEV was too bothered taking the alternative.”

Pippa Mann, breast cancer survivors paint IMS’ start/finish line pink

Photo: IndyCar
Photo: IndyCar
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We’ve written a fair bit on MotorSportsTalk about the efforts Pippa Mann has done in working with the Susan G. Komen Foundation for breast cancer awareness. Susan G. Komen has supported Mann’s last two runs at the Indianapolis 500, when she’s driven the No. 63 Honda for Dale Coyne Racing.

This being National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the awareness hit a new level with Mann working alongside breast cancer survivors to paint the start/finish line at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s iconic Yard of Bricks pink for the day.

IMS president Doug Boles also joined in the opportunity.

View a selection of photos and social posts below. More is linked here, via IndyCar.com.

Mercedes set to clinch F1 constructors’ championship in Russia

SOCHI, RUSSIA - OCTOBER 08:  Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP speaks with members of the media in the paddock during previews to the Formula One Grand Prix of Russia at Sochi Autodrom on October 8, 2015 in Sochi, Russia.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
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For the second year in a row, Mercedes is poised to wrap up the Formula 1 constructors’ championship in Sochi at this weekend’s Russian Grand Prix.

Mercedes won its first F1 teams’ title in Russia last year, having returned to the sport as a works constructor in 2010. When it last enjoyed such status in the 1950s, there was no championship for the teams.

Just as it did in 2014, Mercedes has dominated proceedings in F1 this season, winning all but three races and sweeping to eight one-two finishes to leave drivers Lewis Hamilton (pictured) and Nico Rosberg battling for the drivers’ title for the second straight year.

Now, Mercedes seeks the knock-out blow in the constructors’ title race by officially wrapping it up in Sochi this weekend.

To do so, the team must simply outscore rivals Ferrari by three points this weekend. The lead currently stands at 169 points, with 215 still on offer. After Sochi, there will be 172 remaining.

“We return to Russia with positive memories from last season, when the team sealed the first constructors’ title for Mercedes-Benz with a one-two finish,” team boss Toto Wolff said.

“A repeat performance in Sochi would be fantastic and this is absolutely the target – but we are under no illusions that it will come easy. The job is not done yet.”

The tire allocation for this weekend’s race could pose problems to Mercedes just as it did in Singapore, potentially allowing Ferrari to spoil the party and delay the victory celebrations at Brackley.

However, if the form book is to be trusted, Sochi could be playing host to another Mercedes party on Sunday night with a second world title in the bag for the Silver Arrows.