Spanish F1 Grand Prix - Practice

Adrian Newey signs new long-term contract with Red Bull

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Adrian Newey has signed a new long-term contract with Red Bull Racing, putting an end to speculation linking him with a move away from the team.

The 55-year-old is widely considered to be one of the greatest technical minds in the history of the sport, and much of Red Bull’s success over the past five years has been attributed to him. However, recent stories in the paddock have linked him with a big-money move to Ferrari, who identified him as the perfect person to revive the team’s fortunes after six years without a world title.

Despite Newey reinforcing his commitment to Red Bull a number of times, the rumors refused to dissipate, but now the team has put an end to the stories with this announcement.

“Red Bull is pleased to confirm that it has extended its successful relationship with Adrian Newey with a new multi-year agreement,” a statement from the team read.

“As part of this new agreement, Adrian will work on new Red Bull Technology projects, as well as advising and mentoring Infiniti Red Bull Racing as it develops its Formula 1 cars over the next few seasons. The details of the new projects will be announced in due course.”

With Newey working on these technology projects, it appears that his role may become more akin to that of an advisor at Red Bull, and perhaps less hands on than he currently is as Chief Technical Officer.

Since joining the team in 2006, he has masterminded its four drivers’ and constructors’ titles since 2010, and is highly sought after in the F1 paddock. The stories linking him with a move to Ferrari first emerged over the Spanish Grand Prix weekend, with the Italian team thought to be willing to offer him a huge wage increase in order to lure him to Maranello.

Ferrari has been in something of a rut in recent years, failing to win a world title since its constructors’ success in 2008. Former team principal Stefano Domenicali resigned back in April, and was replaced by Marco Mattiacci, the marque’s former North America CEO. It was thought that his plan for restructuring the team centered around Newey, but he too denied that an approach had been made.

IndyCar 2015 Driver Review: Gabby Chaves

Gabby Chaves
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MotorSportsTalk continues its run through the driver-by-driver field in the Verizon IndyCar Series. In 15th and the rookie-of-the-year for 2015, was Gabby Chaves.

Gabby Chaves, No. 98 Bryan Herta Autosport Honda

  • 2014: Indy Lights champion
  • 2015: 15th Place, Best Finish 9th, Best Start 12th, 0 Top-5, 2 Top-10, 31 Laps Led, 19.3 Avg. Start, 14.4 Avg. Finish

Some drivers finish better than their performances show. Some drivers have performances better than their results show. The latter statement applied to Gabby Chaves in his rookie year, in what was an impressive first season after making the step up from Indy Lights, which deservedly earned him rookie-of-the-year honors.

The best comparison I’d make for Gabby is of Josef Newgarden in 2012 with Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing, a first-year driver on a single-car, newish team to the series.

Chaves rarely dazzled in qualifying but that wasn’t his fault; he and engineer John Dick worked well together and Chaves recounted multiple times this year that a tweak here or tweak there, the wrong way, on the aero kit would send them down the wrong setup path.

Results in races didn’t measure up either but again that was through almost no fault of his own. The only time Chaves looked truly like a rookie was at St. Pete, when he had several collisions. Otherwise he was ahead of eventual winner James Hinchcliffe at NOLA before getting punted off, reliable through the month of May in Indianapolis, finally able to break through for a ninth place in Detroit race two, overachieving in Texas, 11th at Milwaukee after some great wheel-to-wheel racing with series winners and champions, and then phenomenal at Pocono as he was on course for a first career win or podium before late-race engine issues – his first DNF of the season.

For both Chaves and Herta, you’d love to see them together for another season, and the results and confidence for both parties will grow as a result. Those who’ve seen Newgarden’s rise over four years with Fisher and now CFH will note the long-term stability, and that’s what Chaves could do if he gets the time.

He planted the seed of being a great IndyCar driver, and he became pretty versatile during the year too with additional appearances in the DeltaWing prototype, a short-track midget and one of Herta’s Red Bull Global Rallycross cars. To boot, he’s a smart, great kid who is mature beyond his years, and someone you should be buying stock in now. Anyone who saw Chaves in the Mazda Road to Indy should not have been surprised by his rookie season in the big cars.

Off The Grid: Monza preview (premieres Saturday 10/10 on NBCSN)

F1 Grand Prix of Italy
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Having already taken you behind the scenes in Barcelona, Budapest, Singapore, Melbourne and Silverstone, Will Buxton and Jason Swales now head to one of Formula 1’s most iconic venues for the latest episode of Off The Grid.

Monza has appeared in all but one F1 season since the formation of the world championship in 1950, and is a firm favorite among drivers, teams and fans alike.

However, there is far more to the Italian Grand Prix than meets the eye, as we find out in Saturday’s premiere of Off The Grid: Monza at 9:30am ET (follows Russian GP qualifying).

Having honed his talents in go-karts as a kid, Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo is now trying to pass on his knowledge to the next generation of racers. But can he teach Will or Jason a thing or two?

We also catch up with Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg and get a feel for life on the road as he takes us for a tour of his lavish bus in which he travels in for the European F1 races.

Have you ever wondered just how the suits F1 drivers wear are made? We go behind the scenes at Alpine Stars’ factory in Italy and find out.

Off The Grid: Monza premieres on Saturday at 9:30am ET on NBCSN following Russian GP qualifying.