VIDEO: Sutil out of USGP after first lap contact

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Adrian Sutil’s hopes and dreams of scoring a point today in Austin were dashed on the first lap when he was taken out by Sergio Perez at Turn 15. Coincidentally, it was the second straight year the two drivers collided on the first lap of the United States Grand Prix – difference was last year Perez drove for McLaren and Sutil for Force India. Perez is now with Force India and Sutil with Sauber.

Sutil started ninth, a season-best, for his first Q3 appearance since the 2013 British Grand Prix, as he looked to deliver both his and Sauber’s first points of the year. It was Sauber’s best start of the season, as well.

“Today was a good opportunity for us to score points or really try and have a chance,” Sutil told NBCSN’s Will Buxton in the pits. “Sergio did a silly move in my opinion. I couldn’t see it. Car was completely broken. He almost hit Raikkonen. We’ll keep trying and hope for some points. We need two. I think he should come and see me pretty soon… let’s see what he says.”

Perez has spoke as well, also to Buxton: “It’s really unfortunate. This is one of those races you really want everything to go perfect. Very soon in the race, very early, I got into contact with Sutil. I saw the opportunity. I will take responsibility. I took a gamble and it didn’t work out. Sorry for that. We have some telemetry to prove I was having issues with the brakes. We can explain what happened.”

This brought out the first safety car of the race and caused several pit stops.

Pastor Maldonado, Esteban Gutierrez and Jean-Eric Vergne have just been issued 5-second stop-and-go penalties for speeding behind the safety car.

Watch the USGP on NBC and NBC Sports Live Extra as we speak.

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.