Sports cars: Two more Le Mans appointments

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A couple quick signings from the world of sports car racing:

  • Austrian Dominik “Dodo” Kraihamer has been confirmed as fourth full-season driver for Rebellion Racing’s efforts in the FIA World Endurance Championship. Kraihamer raced last year with the Kodewa-run Lotus LMP2 team. Kraihamer will join Nick Heidfeld, Nicolas Prost and Mathias Beche as full-season drivers in Rebellion’s new R-One Toyota LMP1 cars this season, although the team hasn’t confirmed the pairings of the No. 12 and No. 13 cars just yet. The team also confirmed Eat the Ball, a natural bread manufacturer, as a team partner.
  • 2012 European Nissan GT Academy winner Wolfgang Reip, a Belgian, joins fellow ex-gamer-turned racer Lucas Ordonez aboard the Nissan ZEOD RC Garage 56 all-electric experimental car for this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans. Reip has already tested the ZEOD RC and has been in action for the Japanese manufacturer contesting the Bathurst 12 Hour in Australia last month aboard a Nissan GT-R. The team’s third driver will be announced later on; for Reip, it will mark his debut in the race.

Verstappen doesn’t want F1 season to end after recent run of form

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Max Verstappen says he is not ready for the 2017 Formula 1 season to come to an end after enjoying a run of strong form through the closing stages of the campaign.

Verstappen endured a rocky run of form through to the end of the European season that saw him suffer a number of reliability issues and score just a single podium finish, taking third in China back in April.

However, the Dutchman has rallied to score more points than any other driver in the last five races, including victories in Malaysia and Mexico, as well as a podium finish in Japan.

Verstappen heads into next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix chasing a third win of the year to sign off, but joked he does not want the season to end just as he’s got into a good groove.

“We will, of course, try and end the season with a strong result in Abu Dhabi,” Verstappen said. “Last year was actually quite a good race after skipping a pit stop following a spin at Turn 1, it was hard to manage the tires to the end of the race but we did it and finished fourth.

“I would say that my favorite part of the track is at Turns 2 and 3, the fast left, right. It’s also very cool driving underneath the hotel and racing in the darkness with all the lights.

“The final sector at Yas Marina is actually quite technical so you have to be really precise there, but it should also be our strongest part of the track.

“There are quite a few overtaking opportunities to make the race interesting, before the long straight at the hairpin and then at the end of the straight under braking for the next chicane section.

“Abu Dhabi is the last race on the calendar, but I don’t actually want the season to end. I’m really fired up at the moment and I just want to keep going.

“The nice thing will be to spend some time with friends and family over the winter break and then I will look ahead to January and get back into training before it all starts again.”