Daniel Ricciardo was one of the stand-out drivers in today’s Italian Grand Prix, fighting back from a poor qualifying and start to finish in fifth place ahead of Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel.
The Australian driver was never really in contention to claim a third straight win this weekend, but he did manage to strengthen his grip on third place in the drivers’ championship as nearest rival Fernando Alonso was forced to retire from the race.
Starting ninth, Ricciardo made a poor start to drop outside of the top ten, but came into contention following his pit stop for fresh tires after a long first stint. He duly picked off Kimi Raikkonen, Jenson Button, Sergio Perez and Kevin Magnussen before sweeping past his teammate to claim fifth place at the flag.
An early pit stop appeared to compromise Vettel’s strategy, meaning that he was powerless to stop Ricciardo from getting past with five laps to go. The German driver did make a good defensive move, only to be duped by his teammate heading into the second chicane.
Red Bull will now be focusing on the Singapore Grand Prix in two weeks’ time at a track that should play to the strengths of the RB10 car.
The NTT IndyCar Series will be sharing Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the NASCAR Cup Series in a race weekend doubleheader for the second consecutive season, but both series will be on the road course in August 2021.
IMS announced Wednesday that IndyCar will hold an Aug. 14, 2021 race on its 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. It’ll be a day before NASCAR’s premier series runs the same layout for the first time after the Brickyard 400 was contested on the 2.5-mile oval for the first time in 27 years.
This season’s rescheduling of the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix to July 4, 2019 (a day before the Brickyard 400) led to the first NASCAR-IndyCar doubleheader weekend. The Xfinity Series also raced on the IMS road course for the first time July 4 after the IndyCar race ended.
INDYCAR AT IMS THIS WEEKEND: Harvest GP schedule, entry lists
IndyCar will be holding its second race weekend this year at the IMS road course Friday and Saturday with the Harvest GP.
“Our first NASCAR-INDYCAR weekend was a big success last July, with positive feedback from
our loyal fans who watched the races on NBC and from the drivers, teams and participants
involved,” IMS president Douglas Boles said in a statement. “The Xfinity Series’ debut on the IMS road course provided exactly the kind of thrilling action from the green to checkered flags that we anticipated, so we know the teams and drivers of the Cup Series will put on a great show as they turn left and right for the first time at IMS.
“We can’t wait to welcome back fans to see NASCAR and INDYCAR together during this
exciting weekend as we add another memorable chapter in the long, storied history of the
Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”
It also will mark the first NASCAR Cup-IndyCar doubleheader with a crowd as fans weren’t permitted at IMS in July because of the novel coronvavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Over the course of Wednesday, NASCAR is releasing its 36-race slate for next season. IndyCar has yet to release its full 2021 schedule.