GP2: Rossi, Dillmann on the move for Hockenheim

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The news Alexander Rossi is leaving Caterham, announced Wednesday morning, also had an immediate effect on his GP2 season with the Caterham Racing squad.

As my MotorSportsTalk colleague Luke Smith explained over the weekend, the Caterham name situation is a complex labyrinth. The F1 Team has been sold, but Caterham Racing still exists in GP2 and is still run by Tony Fernandes.

Rossi’s GP2 season will continue after all, as he’ll shift from Caterham Racing to Campos Racing for this weekend’s German round of the championship. Rossi replaces Japanese driver Kimiya Sato in the No. 27 entry; Sato had yet to score in the opening five weekends of the season. Campos lead driver Arthur Pic currently ranks eighth in points with 41.

Meanwhile Tom Dillmann, a talented French driver, returns to the series for the second time this year after finishing eighth and third in a one-off weekend appearance for Arden International at Spain. Dillmann replaces Rossi at Caterham, alongside Rio Haryanto.

You can see Rossi, fellow American Conor Daly, Dillmann, points leader Jolyon Palmer and the rest of the GP2 field in action from Hockenheim at 7 p.m. ET on Sunday night, July 20, on NBCSN.

Josef Newgarden wins pole for Grand Prix of Alabama

Photo by Robert Reiners/Getty Images
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With time running off the clock, Josef Newgarden lapped Barber Motorsports Park with a speed of 122.773 mph to win his third career pole and first on this track in the Grand Prix of Alabama.

Newgarden was .0128 seconds faster than teammate Scott Dixon in second.

Newgarden has two previous wins at Barber. He won last year’s edition of this race after starting seventh and in 2015 from fifth.

“I didn’t know if that was going to be enough,” Newgarden said after winning the pole.

“Team Chevy has done a good job,” Newgarden said. “They’ve really given us good power this weekend – good driveability. We’re going to need some fuel mileage tomorrow, which I think we’ll have. But it’s going to get mixed up with the rain.”

Fast 12

Newgarden topped this chart with a speed of 123.475 mph.

He brought Power, James Hinchcliffe, Scott Dixon, Ryan Hunter-Reay, and Sebastien Bourdais along with him to the Fast 6.

Marco Andretti (122.480 mph), Alexander Rossi (122.216), Simon Pagenaud (122.050), Robert Wickens (122.042), Zach Veach (121.784) and Ed Jones (120.984) failed to advance.

Round 1, Group 1

Newgarden posted the fastest single lap in round one, group one of qualification for the Grand Prix of Alabama with a speed of 122.550 mph.

Hunter-Reay, Hinchcliffe, Wickens, and Andretti also advance to the fast 12.

Taking the final slot was Jones with a speed of 119.835 after an off-course excursion in final practice.

This was Andretti’s first advancement to the fast 12 for the first time since 2014.

Round 1, Group 2

Power had the fastest lap of 121.570 mph

Bourdais, Veach (who is battling food poisoning-like symptoms), Rossi, and Pagenaud grabbed positions 2-4.

Scott Dixon had an uncharacteristically slow lap of 121.006, but managed to advance to the fast 12 when the session was red-flagged for an incident involving Tony Kanaan.

With three minutes remaining, Kanaan spun into the tire barriers while leaving pit road. Since he brought out the red flag, he lost his qualification time of 119.996 mph.

Takuma Sato had slipped off-course midway through the session and posted only the Ninth-fastest speed of 120.789 mph.