F1 Grand Prix of Great Britain

Fernando Alonso denies contact with other F1 teams

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Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso has denied speaking to any other team about a seat for 2015 as speculation about his future continues to circulate around the F1 paddock.

The Spaniard joined Ferrari back in 2010 in a deal that was expected to see both the driver and team waltz to the championships. Instead, Alonso has finished as the runner-up on three occasions to Sebastian Vettel, and neither the driver nor the team has won a race in the last twelve months.

With McLaren switching to Honda power for 2015, a move back to Woking is thought to be an option for Alonso. However, he denied speaking to any teams yesterday, and instead made light of the situation.

“It’s the same question every year in July,” he said. “From 2003 I start, so eleven years.

“I didn’t talk with any team, and it’s not my priority. We have to score some good points this weekend and some good results this year.”

Alonso was rumored to be holding talks with Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo in Maranello last week about a new contract, but he explained that he was there to use the simulator and that contact with the senior management at Ferrari was nothing new.

“In Maranello, I’ve been for the simulator,” he said. “I talk with President and with Marco everyday, so it was no different last week.”

McLaren chief Ron Dennis has said that he would welcome Alonso back to the team despite a tumultuous year together back in 2007, that resulted in the Spaniard returning to Renault for 2008.

However, Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen has fared even worse in 2014, and currently sits P12 in the drivers’ standings with just 19 points to his name – some 66 less than Alonso. The Finn is also unconcerned about his future with the team, saying that the focus lies with improving the F14 T car.

“I’m sure we can fix them,” Raikkonen said. “How fast? I hope quickly but it depends on many things.

“I have a contract so I’m not worried about that for the future.”

Both drivers will be hoping for a good result at this weekend’s German Grand Prix. Click here for full details on NBC Sports’ broadcasting schedule for the biggest weekend of racing in 2014.

Bottas confident after strong qualifying in Sochi

SOCHI, RUSSIA - OCTOBER 10:  Valtteri Bottas of Finland and Williams drives during qualifying for the Formula One Grand Prix of Russia at Sochi Autodrom on October 10, 2015 in Sochi, Russia.  (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)
© Getty Images
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Valtteri Bottas is confident of scoring a good result in tomorrow’s Russian Grand Prix after qualifying third at the Sochi Autodrom on Saturday.

Bottas finished as the ‘best of the rest’ in Q3 behind the leading Mercedes duo of Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton, beating the Ferrari drivers to secure P3 for the start of tomorrow’s race.

After a difficult run of form, Bottas believes that he can capitalize on this good qualifying result and make the most of the Williams car’s suitability to the track in Sochi.

“It was a strong job by the team today,” Bottas said. “We managed to set-up the car well and maximize our performance.

“I felt very good in the car all day and managed to get in a rhythm quickly and put in consistent lap times despite the limited number of laps we had completed in practice.

“Tomorrow is where it really matters but I have put myself in a very good position to capitalize.”

Bottas’ teammate, Felipe Massa, was less impressive in qualifying as a mistake and traffic caused him to drop out in Q2, finishing P15.

“I made a mistake at turn eight in my first timed lap in Q2, and then in my final two attempts I came up against a lot of traffic which lost me a lot of time,” Massa explained.

“On my final run my tires were gone at the rear and that was the end of my chances. It’s a shame and I’m very disappointed, but I have a quick car around here so we need to have a good strategy and use our pace to move up into the points tomorrow.”

The Russian Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and Live Extra from 6:30am ET on Sunday.

GP2: Rossi victorious again in shortened Sochi opener

2015 GP2 Series Round 9. Sochi Autodrom, Sochi, Russia. 
Saturday 10 October 2015. 
Alexander Rossi (USA, Racing Engineering) celebrates his win on the podium.
Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service. 
ref: Digital Image _SBL3610
© GP2 Series
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Alexander Rossi claimed his third win in as many GP2 Series rounds in Saturday’s feature race at the Sochi Autodrom.

Since winning the last feature race at Monza in Italy, Rossi has made his Formula 1 debut with Manor and also raced for the team at the iconic Suzuka Circuit in Japan.

As part of his deal with Manor, Rossi has returned to GP2 for this weekend’s round in Russia as he bids to finish as runner-up to impending series champion Stoffel Vandoorne.

Vandoorne was expected to be crowned champion on Saturday, but Rossi managed to delay the Belgian’s celebrations by storming to victory as darkness forced officials to shorten the race.

Carnage on the first lap saw four drivers retire from the race, with damage caused to the barrier at turn 3 by Jordan King resulted in a 30 minute red flag delay.

Once the race restarted, a shortened distance of 15 laps was confirmed, but full points were still to be awarded.

Pole-sitter Alex Lynn managed to pull clear through the first stint, and after falling behind Rossi in the first round of pit stops, the DAMS driver regained the advantage soon after.

However, when Lynn crashed out, Rossi was able to pull clear of the chasing Pierre Gasly and Vandoorne just behind to record his third win in as many race weekends by three seconds.

Rossi will start tomorrow’s sprint race from eighth place on the grid which is reversed, handing pole to Frenchman Arthur Pic who finished P8 on Saturday.

You will be able to read all about Alexander’s success in his exclusive NBC Sports blog on Wednesday. To read his pre-Sochi thoughts, click here.