Townsend Bell’s Indy 500 livery gets unveiled Saturday at IMS

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On Thursday, Helio Castroneves’ Indianapolis 500 livery was unveiled to pay tribute to the past.

On Saturday, Townsend Bell’s Indianapolis 500 livery was unveiled to look forward to the present.

Bell’s No. 6 Robert Graham-Royal Purple-Beneteau USA livery for KV Racing Technology was revealed in front of the Gasoline Alley sign. Bell’s sporting a car that has standard carbon fiber on most, but has a zipper revealing a vibrant, multi-colored nose and wing accents that will undoubtedly stand out from the rest of the field.

Additionally, Bell premiered a new yellow and green helmet, a primarily white fire suit and a white, checkered driving cap. Bell’s multi-colored Fedoras last year made quite an impact and with a similar style to what Jean Alesi had two years ago in the Lotus-powered Fan Force United entry, Bell’s hats will stand out once more.

“We’ve got fun, cool, hip, passionate sponsors. That makes it really fun,” said Bell, who besides his Indianapolis 500 deal for this year also is an NBC Sports Group analyst for the Verizon IndyCar Series and Red Bull Global Rallycross, and a full-time competitor in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship with AIM Autosport’s Ferrari 458 Italia GT3.

“It’s about being out with the old and in with the bold for Robert Graham. We’ve got something here that’s pretty bold. Even the inside is wrapped and decalled.”

In seven prior ‘500 starts, Bell’s best finish is fourth with KV in 2009. He returns to the team after driving for Panther Racing last year and Sam Schmidt’s team the previous three years (2010-2012).

“I’m thrilled to be back here with KV, as I have my previous high water mark with my best finish here before, and they did so well last year,” he said of the defending champion team.

Practice for this year’s Indianapolis 500 kicks off on Sunday.

Ricciardo: Red Bull has ‘decent chance’ of Abu Dhabi F1 victory

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Daniel Ricciardo believes Red Bull stands a “decent chance” of signing off from the 2017 Formula 1 season with a victory in next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

After a slow start to the year, Red Bull made massive gains across the course of the season by developing its RB13 to end the season as front-runners, rivaling Mercedes and Ferrari for pace.

The Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi has a number of slow-speed sections that should suit the RB13 car, with Ricciardo optimistic about his chances of not only ending his podium drought at the track, but even winning the race.

“Yas Marina has actually been one of my favorite tracks over the years,” Ricciardo said in Red Bull’s pre-race preview.

“It’s been a bit like Suzuka for me though, a track that I’ve always enjoyed and gone well on but not quite reached the podium at. I broke that trend in Suzuka this year so hopefully I can do the same in Abu Dhabi.

“When you have so much time away from the car in the off season it helps to sign off with a strong result as it makes you feel like you really deserve a break.

“I think we should have a strong car in Abu Dhabi. I said I want another win before the season is out and I think we have a decent chance of achieving that.”

Red Bull has claimed three race wins through 2017, with Ricciardo’s victory in Azerbaijan being followed up by successes for teammate Max Verstappen in Malaysia and Mexico.