Hamilton: I did as good as I could today

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Lewis Hamilton was pleased to limit the impact of Nico Rosberg’s victory at today’s German Grand Prix by finishing in third place, saying after the race: “I did as good as I could today.”

The Mercedes driver started the race way back down in 20th position after crashing heavily during the first part of qualifying yesterday. His car required a new gearbox, meaning that he had to take a grid penalty, and was staring down the barrel of a sizeable championship deficit to Rosberg had he failed to score.

However, he produced a stunning drive to charge through the field and finish on the podium, and he explained on the podium after the race some of the challenges that he faced.

“I had great fun,” Hamilton said. “It was great to see how many fans we had here today, thank you so much for the support.

“I did as good as I could today, it was very hard to get through the pack safely. I had a little bit of a collision with Jenson, I honestly thought that he was opening the door to let me past. he’s been a bit like that in last race for example, so my bad on judgement there.

“It was very hard to overtake at the end, they were so fast in the straights, but nonetheless I’m glad that I got some points today.”

In the post-race press conference, Hamilton was asked whether he was looking at the result as ‘glass half full’, given that he could be far further behind Rosberg in the championship, or ‘glass half empty’, as he may have won the race had he not started from so far back.

“I don’t really know how to answer that,” Hamilton said. “To get on the podium is quite an achievement, so perhaps half full.”

The Briton will be hoping to cut the gap to Rosberg at the next race in Hungary, where he has won on four previous occasions.

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.