WATCH LIVE: Formula 1’s new era begins in Australia

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A brand new era of Formula 1 is set to get underway in less than an hour’s time in Australia at the beginning of the 2014 season, and you can watch live on NBCSN and Live Extra. CLICK HERE to tune in via the live stream.

In qualifying yesterday, Lewis Hamilton managed to excel in the wet conditions to claim his 32nd career pole position and the 100th for a Mercedes-powered car. However, the Briton – chasing his second win down under – was nearly denied by home favorite Daniel Ricciardo, who fought back after a disastrous winter to put his Red Bull on the front row of the grid.

On debut, Kevin Magnussen was the star of qualifying to finish fourth, whilst fellow rookie Daniil Kvyat qualified eighth.

However, it was a difficult session for defending world champion Sebastian Vettel, who failed to qualify inside the top ten and will start from P12 today.

With new rules, new engines and a number of driver changes, the new era of Formula 1 that is beginning here today in Australia is hotly anticipated. It is hard to remember a grand prix being so looked forward to by fans, teams and drivers, meaning that this race is a must watch.

Our coverage starts at 1:30am ET on NBCSN and Live Extra. CLICK HERE to watch the live stream.

Audi bids farewell to Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich upon retirement

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Audi bid farewell to its iconic head of motorsport, Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, at its end-of-season ‘Race Night’ event in Germany on Friday upon his retirement.

Ullrich took over the reins as Audi’s head of motorsport in 1993 and stayed in the role for 23 years, overseeing its arrival in the prototype class of sports car racing and domination of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Ullrich stepped down from the position at the end of 2016, handing the reins over to ex-Audi DTM chief Dieter Gass, and attended his final racing event with the German marque at its first works Formula E outing in Hong Kong earlier this month.

Ullrich was honored at the Race Night event on Friday and thanked for his efforts in developing Audi into a force within global motorsport.

“In 566 factory-backed commitments during this period he celebrated 209 victories, 13 of them in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, eleven in the 12-hour race at Sebring and nine in the ‘Petit Le Mans’ at Road Atlanta,” a piece on Ullrich’s tenure for Audi’s website reads.

“31 driver titles in super touring car racing, in the DTM and in the sports prototype category are credited to him. 57 campaigners were Audi factory drivers during Wolfgang Ullrich’s era and he was responsible for 18 new developments of racing cars – an impressive tally.”