Wolff in disbelief as Mercedes clinches F1 teams’ title

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Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff admitted that he had to pinch himself after the team secured its first ever Formula 1 constructors’ championship at the Russian Grand Prix in Sochi today.

The German team has dominated Formula 1 in 2014, but it wasn’t until today that it could finally break open the champagne as Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg scored the points required to create an unassailable lead at the top of the teams’ standings.

“Looking at this achievement, it’s incredible,” Wolff said. “I have to pinch myself that we are now part of Mercedes-Benz history. Today, our team won the first ever Formula 1 constructors’ title for Mercedes-Benz and I feel proud and honoured to be part of this group.”

Wolff was quick to thank former team principal Ross Brawn, who left the team at the end of last season after playing an instrumental part in Mercedes’ return to F1 with a works team.

“The foundations of this success were built by Ross and he played such an important role in the team to prepare this success,” Wolff said. “We have been able to continue that work, making the right decisions, putting the right resources in place and putting the team on an upward slope; today’s achievement is the result of that.

“Well done to every single member of the team in the UK and Germany for this world championship. Of course, the focus will now shift to the battle for the drivers’ title and this will stay as intense as ever for the final three races.”

In this time of celebration, Wolff was quick to send his support to Jules Bianchi, who remains in a critical but stable condition in hospital following an accident at the Japanese Grand Prix last weekend.

“This is a great moment for our team but, first of all, we must not forget what happened last week,” he said. “While we celebrate a hard-earned achievement today, we will not forget what happened to Jules in Suzuka and we will not forget the battle he is fighting at the moment.

“We are split in two today, celebrating a moment that we have worked so hard for, but this will never take away the sadness at the events of last weekend.”

Steve Torrence takes NHRA points lead with Gatornationals victory

NHRA Gainesville Steve Torrence
Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Two-time defending NHRA Top Fuel champion Steve Torrence took the points lead Sunday in the AMALIE Motor Oil Gatornationals, beating his father, Billy, in the final round at Gainesville Raceway.

Torrence had a 3.809-second run at 322.11 mph to win for the third time this year and 39th overall. He is now on track for another championship despite missing the season opener.

“We’ve got some good momentum and to be in the points lead, it’s a testament to how hard these guys work,” Steve Torrence said after the NHRA Gainesville victory. “We’ve just got to stay focused and concentrate on what the task at hand is, and that’s trying to win a championship. These guys give me an unbelievable race car and you just try not to screw it up.”

Ron Capps won in Funny Car, Alex Laughlin in Pro Stock and Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Capps raced to his second win this year and 66th overall, beating Tim Wilkerson with a 3.937 at 323.12 in a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.

Laughlin topped Aaron Stanfield with a 7.068 at 204.76 in a Chevrolet Camaro for his first win this season and fourth in his career. Smith rode to his first victory in 2020 and 25th overall, topping Andrew Hines with a 6.843 at 196.99 on an EBR.