Another new chassis for Sebastian Vettel at Singapore


Will a fourth different chassis be the charm for the four-time and defending World Champion?

In a bid to set up Sebastian Vettel for a strong finish to what’s been a disappointing 2014 season, Red Bull Racing has confirmed that the German will be given a brand-new chassis for the Singapore Grand Prix later this month.

This chassis will be the third different RB10 he’s driven in as many races. It’ll also be the third “new” chassis he’s gotten hold of in 2014, as the one he used in last weekend’s Italian Grand Prix was previously used.

Vettel swapped out his original chassis for the Spanish Grand Prix in May prior to his switch for Monza.

“The chassis in Monza was actually an older one that was used in testing at Silverstone,” team advisor Dr. Helmut Marko told German publication Sport Bild. “[The change] was more for psychological reasons. Now he’s going to get a brand new one.”

Vettel finished sixth last weekend and was once again bested by teammate Daniel Ricciardo, who finished one spot ahead in fifth.

Ricciardo has earned three victories in his first season with Red Bull, while Vettel has struggled to perform well in Formula One’s new era of hybrid V6-powered machines.

So is it time for Red Bull to consider giving Ricciardo No. 1 status for at least the remainder of 2014? The decision would likely be easier to make if Ricciardo was closer to the championship-leading duo from Mercedes.

But Ricciardo is still 72 points down to World Championship leader Nico Rosberg (and 50 points behind second-place driver Lewis Hamilton).

And with that gap as big as it is, team principal Christian Horner has indicated there’s no point in pushing additional support Ricciardo’s way.

“We’ll let them race as we trust them,” Horner said to F1’s official website post-Monza. “They race each other hard but extremely fairly.

“The points difference between Daniel and the two Mercedes is enormous, so it does not make any sense for us to interfere.”

Porsche pulls GTLM cars from Mid-Ohio because of COVID-19 positives

Porsche Mid-Ohio COVID-19
David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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Porsche will skip Saturday’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race with its two GTLM cars at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course after three positive COVID-19 tests were confirmed during the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

That resulted in Porsche choosing to pull out of the Nurburgring 24 Hour endurance race in Germany, electing to avoid sending any team members as a precautionary measure.

Porsche Motorsport announced Tuesday that its COVID-19 decision also would apply at Mid-Ohio to its No. 911 and No. 12 teams.

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Three of Porsche’s four IMSA GTLM drivers — Laurens Vanthoor, Frederic Makowiecki and Nick Tandy — also were racing in Le Mans. The trio has remained isolated in Europe and won’t be allowed to travel.

“Based on yesterday’s decision that no employee or racing driver of our Le Mans team will participate in the Nürburgring 24 Hours, we have today decided that this ruling will also apply to the upcoming IWSC race in Mid-Ohio,” Fritz Enzinger, vice president for Porsche Motorsport, said in a release. “This means that Laurens, Nick and Fred will not be traveling to the USA.

“This is very regrettable, but we would like to emphasize that in this case as well the health of all those concerned is the prime focus of the decisions we have taken.”

The decision also affects Earl Bamber, who teamed with Vanthoor to win the GTLM championship last year in the No. 912.

Porsche said its GTLM Porsche 911 RSR-19 entries will return for the Oct. 10 race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval.

That will reduce the GTLM class to four cars — two Corvettes and two BMWs — this weekend at Mid-Ohio, in what could be somewhat of a 2021 preview. Porsche Motorsport announced earlier this year that it will leave IMSA after the 2020 season because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.