Magnussen may unseat Perez at McLaren

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The future of Sergio Perez at McLaren is believed to be in jeopardy as the team weighs up promoting Danish rookie Kevin Magnussen to the team.

Magnussen romped to victory in the Formula Renault 3.5 championship this year winning five races in his sophomore season (and losing a sixth following a technical infringement) and claiming the title by 60 points.

McLaren are understood to have approached several F1 teams with a view to placing Magnussen with them next year, but reports suggest he could follow in Lewis Hamilton’s footsteps by making his debut for the team next year.

Magnussen is unfazed by the possibility of making his debut in F1 next year during a year of upheaval in the regulations. “It could be an advantage for us rookies because if anything it means that experience counts for less,” he told Sky. “No drivers will have experience of driving these cars.”

Perez’s position is in doubt following some lackluster performances earlier this year. But he has shown signs of turning it around recently, equaling McLaren’s best result of the season so far with fifth place in India.

McLaren enjoy an embarrassment of riches on their junior driver program at the moment, as Belgian drive Stoffel Vandoorne finished runner-up to Magnussen in his first season of Formula Renault 3.5.

BREAKING: John Force taken to hospital after Phoenix eliminations crash

Photo courtesy NHRA
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16-time NHRA Funny Car champ John Force has been taken to a local hospital for evaluation and examination following a wicked crash with fellow Funny Car driver Johnnie Lindberg.

The crash occurred during the quarterfinals of Sunday’s final eliminations in the NHRA Arizona Nationals at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in suburban Phoenix.

Force was headed for a win when the engine on his Peak Chevrolet Camaro blew up just as it crossed the finish line, destroying the body. Lindberg, meanwhile, lost traction about one-third of the way down-track, but then got back into the gas to try and catch Force.

Force appeared to lose control of the body-less car and went across from the left lane he was in to the right-hand lane, where he hit the retaining wall in front of Lindberg.

Lindberg tried to avoid Force, but couldn’t. To make matters worse, the body on Lindberg’s car then came off and Force’s and Lindberg’s cars got tangled up in Lindberg’s parachute, sending both chassis’ into the left retaining wall.

Lindberg emerged from his Funny Car under his own power and was checked at the medical center before heading back to his pit.

Force, meanwhile, was helped out of his mangled wreck by the NHRA Safety Safari and was transported by ambulance to the hospital due to the severity of the impact.

Even though Force will be credited with the round win, he obviously will not be able to continue for the remainder of the eliminations.

To add insult to injury, NHRA officials charged Force with oiling down the racetrack, his third of the season in just the first two races. That will cost him 15 points in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series standings and a fine of $4,000.

Here are several posts from social media, including video of the incident from NHRA:

This is the second time Force has had an engine explode and the body blew off in the last two weeks. He also wrecked during the qualifying Feb. 9 for the season-opening Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, California. Here’s the video of that wreck:

MORE: John Force taken to hospital as a precaution after Funny Car motor explodes.

We’ll update Force’s condition when it becomes available.

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