Hamilton and Rosberg thank Brawn for his work at Mercedes

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The drivers at Mercedes have been quick to thank Ross Brawn for all of his hard work over the past few seasons after the team principal confirmed today that he would be stepping down at the end of the year.

Brawn joined the Brackley-based outfit when it was Honda in 2008, which evolved into Brawn GP in 2009 and finally Mercedes in 2010. Since then, he has masterminded the team’s growth, culminating in a second place finish in this year’s constructors’ championship.

Having worked with Brawn since joining Mercedes in 2010, Nico Rosberg took to Twitter to thank him for his work as well as lending his support to Toto Wolff and Paddy Lowe who will be jointly running the team next season.

“Was a great experience to work with Ross. He is a great leader and we shared special times like my first win and Monaco win,” Rosberg tweeted. “Our ambition is to be leading next year. Now on we go flat out with Paddy and Toto! Starting with seat fit and 2014 simulator tomorrow.”

Lewis Hamilton, who joined Mercedes at the beginning of 2013, shared similar sentiments with his followers.

“Massive thanks to Ross Brawn. He’s been a great leader and teacher for me. Ross has built the foundations for us to succeed in 2014!

“Toto and Paddy are fantastic guys and strong leaders for the team. I’ve started my training already and can’t wait for 2014!”

Niki Lauda was also highly complimentary about Brawn, and even said that negotiations did take to place to try and keep him on at the team. However, it appears that the 59-year-old decided that the time was right to leave Brackley, even if his next move is still something of a mystery.

 

Zach Veach splits with Andretti Autosport for rest of IndyCar season

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Zach Veach will be leaving his Andretti Autosport ride with three races remaining in the season, choosing to explore options after the decision was made he wouldn’t return for 2021.

In a Wednesday release, Andretti Autosport said a replacement driver for the No. 26 Dallara-Honda would be named in the coming days. The NTT IndyCar Series will race Oct. 2-3 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course and then conclude the season Oct. 25 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Veach was ranked 11th in the points standings through 11 races of his third season with Andretti. Since a fourth in the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, he hadn’t finished higher than 14th.

“The decision was made that I will not be returning in 2021 with Andretti Autosport in the No. 26 Gainbridge car,” Veach said in the Andretti release. “This, along with knowing that limited testing exists for teams due to COVID, have led me to the decision to step out of the car for the remainder of the 2020 IndyCar season. I am doing this to allow the team to have time with other drivers as they prepare for 2021, and so that I can also explore my own 2021 options.

“This is the hardest decision I have ever made, but to me, racing is about family, and it is my belief that you take care of your family. Andretti Autosport is my family and I feel this is what is best to help us all reach the next step. I will forever be grateful to Michael and the team for all of their support over the years. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for a relationship that started many years ago with Road to Indy. I will also be forever grateful to Dan Towriss for his friendship and for the opportunity he and Gainbridge have given me.

“My love for this sport and the people involved is unmeasurable, and I look forward to continuing to be amongst the racing world and fans in 2021.”

Said team owner Michael Andretti: “We first welcomed Zach to the Andretti team back in his USF2000 days and have enjoyed watching him grow and evolve as a racer, and a person. His decision to allow us to use the last few races to explore our 2021 options shows the measure of his character.

“Zach has always placed team and family first, and we’re very happy to have had him as part of ours for so many years. We wish him the best in whatever 2021 may bring and will always consider him a friend.”

Andretti fields five full-time cars for Veach, Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Colton Herta.

It also has fielded James Hinchcliffe in three races this season.