Hamilton denies Ecclestone’s ‘Red Bull deal’ claim

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Lewis Hamilton denies Bernie Ecclestone’s claim he had a chance to join to join Sebastian Vettel at Red Bull this year.

According to Ecclestone talks were held at the British Grand Prix last year for Hamilton to replace Mark Webber at the team. But Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz opted to give Webber, who won the race, first refusal on the drive.

Hamilton said he didn’t know what to make of Ecclestone’s claim: “I think he said something about me talking to Red Bull?”

“I said to my management team to speak to all the teams and give me what the best options were. There was no particular one that I was pushing for more.”

Ecclestone said Vettel would have no objections to sharing a team with a driver of Hamilton’s caliber: “Sebastian wouldn’t have cared if Lewis had signed for the team.”

It’s the second time in five days Hamilton has distanced himself from remarks made by Ecclestone.

Heading into the Malaysian Grand Prix Ecclestone claimed that Hamilton would rather have taken a year’s sabbatical from racing than spend another season at McLaren.

“I don’t think I would leave this sport unless I didn’t have a good feeling about it, or a smile and an energy when I got in the car. I love racing, so there is no need to stop,” was Hamilton’s response to that suggestion.

However he did add: “I think Bernie has a better memory than me.”

Indy Lights: Askew wins at Gateway as Veekay’s tires wear off

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For the fourth consecutive race, Oliver Askew is an winner in Indy Lights competition, and with only four races reaming in the 2019 season, the 22-year-old Floridian is on the cusp of winning his first series championship.

After starting Saturday’s 75-lap event at World Wide Technology Raceway from the pole position, Askew was quickly passed by Rinus Veekay on the first lap. However, Askew continued to follow VeeKay closely before retaking the lead on lap 53, a lead which he would not relinquish through the checkered flag.

“I think our car was just better,” Askew told NBC Sports after winning his seventh race of the season.

“I understood that from the beginning that he [VeeKay] had more straight line speed than us, so he was more trimmed out, and I knew that he was going to lose his tires at the end, and he did.

“I just had to keep the pressure on and wait for my opportunity.”

With his victory, Askew now extends his lead over VeeKay in the point standings by 52 points.

For Veekay, who held on to finish second, the fight to remain in the title race will not be an easy one.

“I’ll try everything I can but it’s been very tough,” VeeKay said. “The team and I, we’re giving it all we have. That’s all we can do.”

Daivd Malukas finished third, while Ryan Norman and and Robert Mcgennis finished fourth and fifth, respectfully.

Dalton Kellett took the checkered flag where he started in the sixth position, and Lucas Kohl finished the race in the seventh position.

Toby Sowery finished the race in the eighth and final position after bringing out the lone caution of the race by spinning in Turn 2 on lap 12.

Indy Lights drivers and teams will now head out to the Pacific Northwest for a double header at Portland International Raceway on Saturday, August 31 and Sunday, September 1. Both races will air live on NBC Sports Gold.

Click here for full race results 

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