WATCH LIVE: FP2 for the German Grand Prix

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After Nico Rosberg made a perfect start to his German Grand Prix weekend by topping FP1 at Hockenheim, teammate Lewis Hamilton will be looking to strike back during second practice this afternoon.

You can watch FP2 live on Live Extra from 8am ET. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

Rosberg edged out Hamilton in the first session on Friday morning, finishing less than a tenth of a second quicker than his teammate. The Briton did show some impressive pace though, and will undoubtedly be a force to be reckoned with this weekend. We look set for another tight tussle at the front of the field in Germany.

For Rosberg, the pressure is on to continue Germany’s sporting success. Last Sunday, the national soccer team won the FIFA World Cup, and that’s certainly being felt around the paddock at Hockenheim. Mercedes’ motorhome has been given a fresh livery honoring the team, and Rosberg himself has a World Cup helmet for the weekend.

FP1 saw a tight battle to be best of the rest. Fernando Alonso was the eventual victor, finishing third, but the likes of Sebastian Vettel, Daniel Ricciardo, Jenson Button and Kevin Magnussen are all in the frame to fight for P3 in qualifying and the race. FP2 should give us an idea of everyone’s respective race pace for Sunday.

FP2 begins at 8am ET and is live on Live Extra. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

If you cannot join us live, the encore will be shown at 2:30pm ET on NBCSN.

James Hinchcliffe on Andretti: ‘It’s certainly the place I want to be’

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Since before the start of the 2020 NTT IndyCar Series season, James Hinchcliffe tirelessly has worked to ensure the future would include a full-time return in 2021.

And with an opportunity to run the final three races this season with Andretti Autosport, there seems a surefire (albeit unlikely) path.

“If I go out and win all three,” Hinchcliffe joked with IndyCar on NBC announcer Leigh Diffey in an interview Friday (watch the video above), “it would be hard for them to say no, right?”

Regardless of whether he can go unbeaten at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course next weekend or the Oct. 25 season finale at St. Petersburg, Florida (where he earned his first career win in 2013), Hinchcliffe will have the chance to improve his stock with the team that he knows well and now has an opening among its five cars for 2021.

All three of Hinchcliffe’s starts this season — the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, July 4 at the IMS road course and the Indianapolis 500 — were with Andretti, where he ran full time in IndyCar from 2012-14.

“Obviously, the plan from January 2020 was already working on ’21 and trying to be in a full-time program,” he said. “I’ve really enjoyed being reunited with Andretti Autosport, and everybody there has been so supportive. It’s been a very fun year for me on track. It’s been kind of a breath of fresh air in a lot of ways.

“It’s certainly the place I want to be moving forward. We’ve been working on that, working on those conversations. Genesys has been an incredible partner in my three races. We’ll be representing Gainbridge primarily, but Genesys will still have a position on our car in the last three.”

Gainbridge is the primary sponsor of the No. 26 Dallara-Honda that was vacated by Zach Veach, who left the team after it was determined he wouldn’t return in 2021. Hinchcliffe can empathize having lost his ride with Arrow McLaren SP after last season with a year left on his deal.

“You never want to earn a ride at the expense of somebody else in the sense that has happened here with Zach,” Hinchcliffe said. “I feel bad that he’s not able to see out the last three races of his season. I’ve got a lot of respect for him off track. He’s been a teammate this year, a colleague for years before that and honestly a friend for years before that. I’ve got a lot of time for him and his family. I understand a little bit of what it’s like in that position and what he’s going through.”

Hinchcliffe is ready to seize the moment, though, starting with the Oct. 2-3 doubleheader race weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. He had been hoping to add the Harvest Indy Grand Prix to his schedule and had been working out for the possibility.

“Then last week I had given up hope (and) was resigned that wasn’t happening,” he said. “I told my trainer, ‘I think we’re done for this year.’ Three days later, this call comes. I’m glad we didn’t make that decision too early. I feel great physically.

“I look at it as a great opportunity to continue to show I’ve still got what it takes and should be there hopefully full time next year on the grid.”

Watch Hinchliffe’s video with Leigh Diffey above or by clicking here.