WATCH LIVE: Hungarian GP Race Day; can Rosberg cash in?

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Lewis Hamilton is staring down the barrel of a sizeable deficit to teammate Nico Rosberg at the top of the championship after the drivers enjoyed contrasting fortunes in Hungary yesterday.

While Rosberg stormed to his fifth pole position in six races, Hamilton saw his Mercedes engine go up in flames after a fuel leak. He will start today’s race from the pit lane.

You can watch Hungarian Grand Prix live on CNBC and Live Extra from 7:30am ET. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

Following his win in Germany, Rosberg currently leads the drivers’ championship by fourteen points, but most expected that figure to be cut in half in Hungary. Hamilton’s record at the Hungaroring is very impressive, with the Briton claiming four wins in seven years. However, he stands little chance of making in five from the pit lane.

The weather gods could yet smile on those further back. Rain is due to hit the Hungaroring one hour before the race begins, which would undoubtedly put a spin on the grid. Sebastian Vettel and Valtteri Bottas appear to stand little chance of catching Rosberg in normal conditions from second and third on the grid, but in the rain, it could all change.

There are also a few other storylines to keep an eye out for. Kimi Raikkonen will be hoping to bounce back from a shock Q1 exit, whilst Kevin Magnussen also faces a pit lane start alongside Hamilton following his Q3 crash. Sauber enjoyed its best qualifying of the season and will start 11th and 13th, and Jules Bianchi impressed once again for Marussia in 15th.

However, there is one main question to answer: can Rosberg cash in on Hamilton’s misfortune and extend his championship lead ahead of the summer break?

Join us at 7:30am ET on CNBC and Live Extra to find out. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

Helio Castroneves ‘hustling’ for IndyCar, IMSA rides; talking with four to five teams

Helio Castroneves IMSA IndyCar
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As his season gathers steam, Helio Castroneves said his prospects for finding new rides for 2021 in IMSA and IndyCar also are gaining momentum.

The three-time Indianapolis 500 winner said Monday he is optimistic about landing in either or perhaps a combination of both series when Team Penske and Acura end their DPi partnership after this season.

“A lot of people I spoke with, four to five teams, are interested,” Castroneves said. “Whether it’s doing Indy 500 only, whether it’s pushing to do full time or do the sports cars as well. It’s been a very nice conversation.

LOOKING AHEADTeam Penske drivers seeking new rides for 2021

“I have a lot of respect for all the teams that have been talking, and I feel the same feedback. We just have to wait for their (sponsor) connections, and I’m also looking for some connections on my side as well, so hopefully we’ll be able to put this together and get something very soon.”

Given two decades of success with Penske in IndyCar and IMSA, Castroneves’ resume hardly needs burnishing. But the Brazilian has combined with co-driver Ricky Taylor in the No. 7 Acura DPi to win the past two overall victories at Road America and Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.

But Castroneves, who doesn’t have a manager, said he has been working the phones hard rather than wait for the strong results to bring in the calls.

“At this point, I feel like I’m the one who needs to be talking to them because people need to know I want to continue racing and understand my desire,” Castroneves, 45, said. “There is opportunity, no question, in both (IndyCar and IMSA), which I’m really happy about it. However, because of the COVID-19, a lot of things sometimes have to be a little delayed. But I’m excited. Whatever the opportunity and whatever destiny guides me, whether IndyCar or sports cars, trust me I’ll be as happy as it could be and doing my 100 percent like I always did.

“It’s like politics, you need to be out there, good news or bad news. People have to make notice of your presence. I’m hustling. I want to continue to keep it going. Hopefully, we’ll have good news very soon.”

The news has been all good lately on track for Castroneves and Taylor, who hope to continue their run Sunday at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

The No. 6 duo has surged to sixth in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship standings, 10 points out of the lead with four races remaining. After thinking there was “no hope” to be competitive after opening the season with three consecutive poor finishes, Taylor now sees an opportunity for a happy ending.

“With the program going away, Helio has won all the big races and given so much back to the team and left such a mark, he’s really part of Penske history,” Taylor said. “For me, it’s been an opportunity of a lifetime to be a part of it. I’d like to leave my little mark as well. Helio has won everything except for a championship.

“Obviously, we’ve won races already together, but we can win a championship now. I think if both of us can do that together and both win our first championship for ‘The Captain,’ that would be an absolute dream come true, and we can tie a bow on it and be happy.”