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Hartley not overthinking recent crazy race schedule over three series

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Brendon Hartley is trying not to overthink his recent racing commitments despite enjoying one of the busiest recent runs in motorsport, competing on eight straight weekends across three series.

Hartley’s relentless run started with Petit Le Mans on October 7 in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship before racing in the FIA World Endurance Championship the following weekend at Fuji with Porsche.

The New Zealander was then drafted in by Toro Rosso to make his shock Formula 1 debut one week later in the United States, and retained his seat for the Mexican Grand Prix.

Hartley was back in action for Porsche last weekend in Shanghai as he was crowned WEC drivers’ champion for a second time before jetting to Brazil ahead of this weekend’s grand prix at Interlagos.

Following this sixth leg, Hartley will venture to Bahrain for the WEC season finale before then contesting the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to close out the F1 season.

In a year that has seen him also win the 24 Hours of Le Mans for the first time, learn of the closure of Porsche’s LMP1 program at the end of the season – at the time leaving him without a seat – and come close to a move into the Verizon IndyCar Series, Hartley has had plenty to juggle and come to terms with.

“I guess I’ve tried to not overthink it,” Hartley said. “Even winning the championship hasn’t really sunk in. I haven’t really had time to reflect.

“It probably helps that I’m just going from one weekend to the next. I think this is my sixth race in a row. It won’t be until I get home at the end of the year after all the racing’s over that I’ll be able to reflect and fully understand what’s just happened to me.

“I’m well aware that making my grand prix debut and Le Mans victory and World Endurance Championship… I mean, they’re all amazing things, but at the moment I’m just trying to take one step at a time and try to stay focussed and catch up on as much sleep as I can.”

Hartley is poised to race full-time in F1 next year with Toro Rosso in what would be his first permanent single-seater campaign since 2011.

Brendon Hartley’s late-season schedule

October 7 – Petit Le Mans (IMSA)
October 15 – 6 Hours of Fuji (WEC)
October 22 – United States Grand Prix (F1)
October 29 – Mexican Grand Prix (F1)
November 5 – 6 Hours of Shanghai (WEC)
November 12 – Brazilian Grand Prix (F1)
November 19 – 6 Hours of Bahrain (WEC)
November 26 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix (F1)

Get your motor running: American Flat Track’s new season premieres Sunday on NBCSN

Photos courtesy American Flat Track
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If you like racing two-wheel style, make sure you catch the debut of a new multi-year TV broadcast deal featuring the American Flat Track motorcycle racing series on NBCSN.

The 18-round series debuts this Sunday at 2 p.m. ET on NBCSN with the season-opening race that was held at Daytona International Speedway on March 15.

Going forward, all 18 rounds of the series will be televised on NBCSN in highly-coveted weekend afternoon programming slots without two weeks of each event.

Last season, AFT drew nearly two million viewers on NBCSN with regular primetime coverage on Thursday nights.

This season, the one-hour, tape-delayed telecasts will be part of NBCSN’s regular weekend programing, following or preceding coverage of NASCAR, INDYCAR and Pro Motocross.

AFT is now in its 65th season, with two distinct classes: powerful, twin-cylinder rides in the AFT Twins presented by Vance & Hines division, and the competition in the 450cc AFT Singles division.

“We are very excited to kick-off our second season of AFT on NBCSN,” NBC Sports Group Senior Director of Programming Jeff Macaluso. “The 2017 season provided us with some incredible racing and showed us how passionate the riders and fans are of this historic sport.

“The move to weekends this year, around other marquis motorsports properties, is sure to raise the level even higher.”

Here’s the 2018 AFT schedule on NBCSN:

Round Track, Location Track Type Premiere Time (ET) Time (PT)
1 Daytona International Speedway, Daytona Beach, FL TT Sun, 3/25 2:00 PM 11:00 AM
2 Dixie Speedway, Woodstock, GA Short Track Sat, 4/14 5:30 PM 2:30 PM
3 Texas Motor Speedway, Fort Worth, TX Half-Mile Sun, 5/06 4:00 PM 1:00 PM
4 Calistoga Speedway, Calistoga, CA Half-Mile Sun, 5/20 12:00 PM 9:00 AM
5 Turf Paradise, Phoenix, AZ Mile Sat, 5/26 3:00 PM 12:00 PM
6 Cal Expo, Sacramento, CA Mile Sun, 6/03 2:00 PM 11:00 AM
7 Illinois State Fairgrounds, Springfield, IL Mile Sat, 6/09 5:00 PM 2:00 PM
8 Red Mile, Lexington, KY Mile Sat, 6/16 12:00 PM 9:00 AM
9 Remington Park, Oklahoma City, OK Mile Sat, 6/23 5:00 PM 2:00 PM
10 Allen County Fairgrounds, Lima, OH Half-Mile Sat, 7/07 2:30 PM 11:30 AM
11 Weedsport Speedway, Weedsport, NY Short Track Sun, 7/15 6:00 PM 3:00 PM
12 Buffalo Chip Campgrounds, Sturgis, SD TT Sat, 8/11 12:30 PM 9:30 AM
13 Black Hills Speedway, Rapid City, SD Half-Mile Sat, 8/18 2:00 PM 11:00 AM
14 Peoria Motorcycle Club, Peoria, IL TT Sat, 9/01 3:00 PM 12:00 PM
15 Illinois State Fairgrounds, Springfield, IL Mile Sat, 9/22 2:30 PM 11:30 AM
16 Williams Grove Speedway, Mechanicsburg, PA Half-Mile Sun, 9/23 5:00 PM 2:00 PM
17 Canterbury Park, Shakopee, MN Mile Sun, 10/14 5:00 PM 2:00 PM
18 Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, NJ Mile Sun, 10/21 2:00 PM 11:00 AM


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