Bianchi sets sights on Ferrari seat

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Jules Bianchi has set his sights on a seat with Ferrari in the future, but he has cooled all talk of a move to the team soon, claiming that his focus is with Marussia for the time being.

“I am still speaking to Ferrari as I am still part of their Driver Academy,” Bianchi told Sky Sports. “So for sure they look at what I am doing.”

“But, I don’t want to put any extra pressure – I am with Marussia now, I want to do a good job for them and then we will see what happens.”

Bianchi did however admit that his long-term goal was to step up to a full time seat with Ferrari, although he does not expect to make the move for 2014.

“It is something we have in mind because I already have a contract with them in the Academy, so we want for sure to do something in the future. But, it is too early to know about that. We have done only two races, we still have 17 races to do and we will see what happens.

“I need to stay at this level first of all and improve. We will see next year what happens, but I would be pleased to stay with Marussia next year again.”

Bianchi is clearly a star for the future, even though he is only two races in to his F1 career. If the French youngster can continue his good form, he will certainly be in the running for Felipe Massa’s seat in the next year or two.

Porsche pulls GTLM cars from Mid-Ohio because of COVID-19 positives

Porsche Mid-Ohio COVID-19
David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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Porsche will skip Saturday’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race with its two GTLM cars at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course after three positive COVID-19 tests were confirmed during the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

That resulted in Porsche choosing to pull out of the Nurburgring 24 Hour endurance race in Germany, electing to avoid sending any team members as a precautionary measure.

Porsche Motorsport announced Tuesday that its COVID-19 decision also would apply at Mid-Ohio to its No. 911 and No. 12 teams.

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Three of Porsche’s four IMSA GTLM drivers — Laurens Vanthoor, Frederic Makowiecki and Nick Tandy — also were racing in Le Mans. The trio has remained isolated in Europe and won’t be allowed to travel.

“Based on yesterday’s decision that no employee or racing driver of our Le Mans team will participate in the Nürburgring 24 Hours, we have today decided that this ruling will also apply to the upcoming IWSC race in Mid-Ohio,” Fritz Enzinger, vice president for Porsche Motorsport, said in a release. “This means that Laurens, Nick and Fred will not be traveling to the USA.

“This is very regrettable, but we would like to emphasize that in this case as well the health of all those concerned is the prime focus of the decisions we have taken.”

The decision also affects Earl Bamber, who teamed with Vanthoor to win the GTLM championship last year in the No. 912.

Porsche said its GTLM Porsche 911 RSR-19 entries will return for the Oct. 10 race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval.

That will reduce the GTLM class to four cars — two Corvettes and two BMWs — this weekend at Mid-Ohio, in what could be somewhat of a 2021 preview. Porsche Motorsport announced earlier this year that it will leave IMSA after the 2020 season because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.