Pastor Maldonado remains motivated despite poor start

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Pastor Maldonado insists that he remains as motivated as ever despite a difficult start to the season.

The Venezuelan driver has failed to score any points in the opening seven races, and he currently sits bottom of the drivers’ standings behind the Marussia and Caterham drivers. Nevertheless, he is still hopeful of securing his first top ten finish in the next few races as Formula 1 returns to Europe.

“I am very motivated,” Maldonado said. “I think we have some good weekends ahead of us and there are still so many races to go. The European part of the season is very important for us, so let’s push hard, do our best and for sure we will be in the points soon.

“We all know what we have to do and we are all pushing hard. Yes, we can all get frustrated, but ultimately we all want to achieve success so we remain positive. We can see how much improvement there has been with pace from the car and once we have all the reliability issues sorted we’ll be regularly fighting for points.

“Once we’re there, the next target is to fight for more points and then podiums. We’ve seen that the Mercedes are not perfect and can be beaten. Even they had reliability issues in Canada.”

Maldonado had made a good start in Canada and was running inside the top ten before a problem on his car forced him to retire from the race. Heading to Austria – which returns to F1 after eleven years away – the Lotus driver believes that the Red Bull Ring circuit could suit the E22 car.

“I think it should be quite good for the E22,” he explained. “It looks like the circuit doesn’t have too many low speed corners and the downforce and set-up is similar to Barcelona, which should help us.

“We will work hard to solve the problems we had in Canada so that we can reach our targets in Austria. I’m certainly optimistic Austria will suit us better than the last two rounds.”

Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

Extreme E drivers Andretti
Extreme E
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The Extreme E team formed by Andretti Autosport and United Autosports named Catie Munnings and Timmy Hansen as its drivers Monday for the series’ inaugural 2021 season.

Munnings is a successful veteran of rally series. Hansen is a past winner and champion in the World Rallycross Championship.

They both will race in the environmentally conscious electric SUV series that will hold events in five areas around the world that are threatened by climate change. Chip Ganassi Racing and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton also are fielding cars in Extreme E, which will feature male and female co-drivers on every team.

Catie Munnings

“I’m so excited to join Andretti United Extreme E,” Munnings said in a release. ““I was really intrigued when I first heard about Extreme E, I just knew I had to be involved. The male / female racing partnership is a fantastic and exciting new concept. The season has incredible locations and the racing will be very exciting. It will be a new challenge for the teams and drivers, and I’m so thrilled to be working with such a strong team.

“The championship is a really innovative concept, it’s combining motorsport and science and will produce an important legacy in each race location. Bringing the platform that motorsport has in line with the awareness that the planet needs right now is awesome and a really important message.”

Timmy Hansen

Said Hansen: “Going into the Extreme E will be a new chapter in my career, one that I am extremely excited about. It is something brand new, not only for me, but the whole of motorsport. The format is something

we’ve never seen before. I’m also delighted to be able to carry the message of something bigger – talking about the environment and doing something good for the world – that’s something that really drives me. It’s going to be a big adventure in life to see these locations and I’m going to do my best in carrying this responsibility and hopefully making people aware of the challenges we have in the world, together with our passion for racing.”