Formula 1 can be a very dynamic and polarizing sport. In this video, Will Buxton responds to the question, “What is Formula One?” and provides a very heartfelt answer on the joys, disappointments, triumphs and disasters of the sport.
BUENOS AIRES – Jean-Eric Vergne is set to take no part in Saturday’s Buenos Aires ePrix after coming down with food poisoning overnight.
Vergne had been due to enter his first race of 2016 at the Puerto Madero street circuit on Saturday with DS Virgin Racing, and completed shakedown on Friday as usual.
However, the Frenchman came down with food poisoning overnight, and will now take no part in the race as confirmed to MotorSportsTalk by the team.
Vergne has not travelled to the track and is on a drip as a result of the food poisoning, but remained keen to race.
However, team principal Alex Tai took the decision to stop Vergne from racing, believing that the extreme heat in Buenos Aires would only worsen his condition.
It had been reported that WTCC champion Jose Maria Lopez could be drafted in as a possible replacement for Vergne, but the team declined to comment on whether it was pursuing this.
BUENOS AIRES – Sam Bird enjoyed an early edge in practice for the Buenos Aires ePrix after topping the timesheets in the first session at the Puerto Madero street circuit.
Bird posted a latest time of 1:09.913 to finish three-tenths of a second clear of Daniel Abt as just four drivers managed to put in a full power lap at 200kW.
Bird and Abt were joined by the NEXTEV TCR duo of Nelson Piquet Jr. and Oliver Turvey in completing a qualifying simulation lap, who finished in third and fourth place respectively.
Andretti driver Simona de Silvestro suffered an early setback when she hit the wall at pit exit with the back-end of her car, taking off the left-rear corner and losing the rear wing. De Silvestro admitted to her engineer upon returning to the pits that it was her own mistake, but the team was now left to begin the quite significant repair job.
DS Virgin Racing driver Jean-Eric Vergne missed opening practice after coming down with food poisoning, and will take not part in the race weekend as a result.
Lucas di Grassi also had a brief scare in his ABT Schaeffler car, but was able to reset and get back going again after grinding to a halt towards the end of the session. Robin Frijns was not so fortunate in the second Andretti car as his session came to an early end when he stopped on track.
Sebastien Buemi had set the pace early on for Renault e.dams, and managed to finish within one second of Bird at the top despite only completing a lap at 170kW. His lap was good enough to finish P5 ahead of perennial rival di Grassi in sixth.
New team, new driver in the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires series. It’s not full-time – yet – but this is good.
The full release from McCormack Racing is below:
18 year-old King of the Wing Sprint Car Series champion Davey Hamilton, Jr. has come to terms to compete for Jack McCormack & McCormack Racing in the 2016 Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires. The third generation driver originally from Boise, ID will be making his debut campaign in a single seater.
Hamilton hopes to follow in his father’s footsteps as the latest American racer to translate asphalt Open Wheel & Sprint Car success into an INDYCAR career. Hamilton, Jr.’s 2015 concluded with his fifth Sprint Car win of the year at Madera in November en route to the King of the Wing Western Sprint Car Series championship and third in the national championship.
His father Davey, Sr. has competed in 11 Indianapolis 500s with a best finish of fourth. He also finished second in series points in back-to-back seasons in 1997 and 1998. He remarkably finished ninth in the 2007 edition of the 500 after a six year comeback from a devastating crash at Texas Motor Speedway.
“This opportunity with Jack McCormack is something I have been looking forward to for a long time,” Hamilton, Jr. said. “We are working hard to be on the grid in March to challenge for wins and ultimately an Indy Lights championship. We still have some work to do financially but we’re pushing hard.”
McCormack’s racing history goes back to 1966 in drag racing before a successful career in engineering and car ownership across IMSA, IndyCar, Indy Lights, and USAC. McCormack has worked with a diverse range of top drivers such as Sam Posey, Skip Barber, Pancho Carer, Roger McCluskey, Jerry Sneva, Roger Mears, Tom Sneva, Geoff Brabham, and Dick Simon.
McCormack Racing and Hamilton have spent much of the off season testing primarily at Buttonwillow Raceway in California. After several weeks practicing a third-generation Indy Lights car, Hamilton took controls of the current fourth-generation IL-15 for numerous testing days. Hamilton and McCormack will make a private oval test later this month before joining the series officially on February 24th for the test on the one-mile oval Phoenix International Raceway.
The team has tentative agreements in place to compete in the entire Indy Lights starting with the Streets of St. Pete March 11-13. Two separate Indy Lights races will be contested across opening weekend for the series. Indy Lights’ 2016 agenda also includes oval races at Phoenix, Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Freedom 100 on Carb Day, and Iowa Speedway.
Both Hamilton and McCormack are still searching for additional funding to solidify an effort to be the seventh American on the grid this spring.
BUENOS AIRES – Alain Prost has confirmed that he will not have a role within the revived Renault Sport Formula 1 Team’s management.
Renault will return to F1 with a works team in 2016 after five years away, having taken over the Lotus operation at Enstone in December.
On Wednesday, the team unveiled its driver line-up and management team for the season, with Prost not being announced as having a role.
Many expected the four-time F1 world champion to take up a position similar to that of Niki Lauda at Mercedes, where the Austrian works as a non-executive director.
Speaking to MotorSportsTalk in Buenos Aires, Prost confirmed that he will not be involved with the F1 operation and will instead focus on his broadcasting commitments and his role in Formula E with Renault e.dams.
“I decided for sure, not so long ago. I prefer to be away from the operational work because it’s too complicated anyway with Formula E and the ambassador role and Canal+ [in France] and maybe Channel 4 [in Britain], different things that I have to do,” Prost said.
“I cannot do things everywhere, it does not work anyway. I think also the image could create more problems than advantages, especially for the management. They have a structure.
“It’s going to be tough at the beginning. I’ll let them work and I’ll still keep my role of ambassador and different things.”