Silverstone turns Pink for Papa in memory of John Button

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The Formula 1 grandstands and paddock at the British Grand Prix have turned a shade of pink today as the sport pays tribute to John Button.

The father of McLaren driver Jenson, John was the driving force behind his son’s passion for racing and career. He missed just a handful of his races in F1, and always wore his lucky pink shirt on race day. He was an amiable character with an endearing smile, and is sorely missed following his death in January at the age of 70.

In memory of John – nicknamed “Papa Smurf” – McLaren has been running a ‘Pink for Papa’ campaign that will see fans don pink shirts and fill the grandstands at Silverstone. In the paddock, a number of journalists and team members have also turned their shirts a shade of pink for the race today.

Button himself is sporting a pink liveried helmet this weekend, and it proved to be something of a lucky charm in qualifying as he put his McLaren third on the grid; his best result since Brazil 2012.

You can watch the British Grand Prix live on CNBC and Live Extra from 7:30am ET this morning.

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.”