IndyCar: Will Power, Simon Pagenaud lock horns again in Detroit

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For the second time this Verizon IndyCar Series season, Simon Pagenaud has come off badly after a run-in on the track with Will Power.

On Lap 5 of today’s Race 1 for the Chevrolet Indy Dual in Detroit, Pagenaud was on the rear wing of Power in a battle for position. But in Turn 6, Power’s No. 12 Team Penske Chevrolet moved outside and made contact with Pagenaud’s No. 77 Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda (pictured), causing left-front suspension damage and triggering the first yellow of the day.

“I was trying to get around him, but he wouldn’t give me any room anywhere,” Pagenaud told ESPN. Before the interview, he had squarely put the blame on Power over his team radio:

Pagenaud was optimistic that, if allowed, he could return to the race.

“It’s not too much damage,” he said. “We could change the wishbone and go back out, but I don’t know if the Race Director will allow us to bring the car back to the pits. But we could definitely go back out – it’s not too much damage.”

Earlier this year at Long Beach, Pagenaud was hit by Power off of a restart at Lap 32 while they jockeyed for fourth position. The impact sent Pagenaud into the Turn 6 tire barriers, and while the Frenchman recovered for a Top-5 finish, that didn’t keep him from angrily confronting the Australian after the checkered flag.

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.”