Allmendinger green-lighted for Long Beach race

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AJ Allmendinger’s been given the green light for another IndyCar start with Team Penske in two weeks at Long Beach.

Penske Racing president Tim Cindric confirmed the news on Twitter early Saturday morning.

“Pushing the “go” button for @AJDinger for Long Beach!  Trying to give him as much seat time as we can for @IMS,” he wrote.

Allmendinger finished the three pre-qualifying practice sessions in the top 10, and by Saturday morning’s practice was actually quickest of the three Penske entries, seventh to Will Power in 10th and Helio Castroneves in 12th.

Allmendinger explained the differences between a NASCAR and IndyCar weekend in setup and preparation terms on Friday.

“It’s so funny because on the Cup side of it you have set days,” he said. “Friday you work on qualifying, Saturday you work on race set-up and you go race on Sunday. And here obviously the whole time you’re working on speed, but there’s not a lot of time to work on race set-up. So I think it’s just the process of going through this weekend and figuring out how the weekend goes, how we use out tires and what we’re working on.”

NEOM McLaren Formula E announces Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast for 2023 season

McLaren Formula E Hughes
McLaren Racing
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Doubling down on their commitment to electric auto sports, McLaren Racing announced Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast to compete in the 2023 Formula E Series (FE), which completes their driver lineup.

The NEOM McLaren FE team was formed by the acquisition of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team that won the 2021 and 2022 championships with Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries behind the wheel.

“Today’s announcement feels like a long time coming,” said Ian James, managing director of NEOM McLaren Electric Racing in a release. “Since May this year, when we first announced McLaren Racing’s entry into Formula E, we have been working tirelessly to get in place the best possible team and structure for sustainable success.

“On the one hand, we have been working on the retention of the amazing talent that already was in place before going into the transitional phase. I’m proud to say I think we’ve done a great job on that front.

“On the other hand, we have been focusing on putting in place new processes and new talent – and the latter includes the drivers.”

The driver lineup clasps the two hands together.

Hughes brings 10 years racing experience in single seater cars, including a role with the acquired Mercedes-EQ team as a reserve and development driver for the past two seasons. He is the 2013 BRDC Formula 4 champion and has multiple wins in Formula 2, including two in 2020.

Announced in August, Rast joins the team after earning two podium finishes and six top-fives in 22 career Formula E starts for Audi Sport ABT before returning to the DTM Series last year. Rast’s best finish in Formula E came in the Puebla E Prix when he finished second to teammate Lucas di Grassi by less than a half second.

McLaren’s commitment to Formula E comes one year after they entered the Extreme E rally series in 2022 with Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour in the driver lineup. After a modest start to the season, the McLaren XE drivers crossed the finish line first in Round 4 in Chile, but were assessed a time penalty that dropped them to fifth. Last week in the season finale in Uruguay, they held onto a hard-earned second place finish.