Brazilian Grand Prix times, schedule across NBC, CNBC, NBCSN this weekend

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NBC Sports Group will present more than 15 hours of comprehensive coverage of the Formula One Brazilian Grand Prix this week across NBC, NBCSN, CNBC, and NBC Sports Live Extra. Live coverage of the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday begins at 10:30 a.m. ET on CNBC. NBC will air an encore presentation of the race at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday.

NBC Sports Live Extra – NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, and tablets – will provide streaming coverage of all practices, qualifying, and the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg will continue their battle atop the F1 drivers’ championship standings this weekend in Sao Paolo. Hamilton currently leads Rosberg by 24 points with two races remaining in the 2014 season. Hamilton held off Rosberg last weekend at the United States Grand Prix for his 10th victory of the season, but Rosberg’s second-place finish ensured that the 2014 title will be determined at the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi on Sunday, Nov. 23.

Coverage begins Friday at 7 a.m. ET with Practice 1 exclusively on NBC Sports Live Extra, followed by Practice 2 at 11 a.m. ET on NBCSN. Live Extra will provide exclusive live coverage of Practice 3 on Saturday at 8 a.m. ET, and CNBC will present live qualifying at 11 a.m. ET on Saturday. CNBC will air live coverage of the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday, beginning at 10:30 a.m. ET, prior to NBC’s encore presentation of the Brazilian GP at 1 p.m. ET.

NBCSN will air encore presentations of qualifying on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. ET, and the Brazilian GP on Sunday at 4 p.m. ET.

Lead F1 announcer Leigh Diffey will call the Brazilian Grand Prix, and will be joined by veteran analyst and former driver David Hobbs, and analyst and former race mechanic for the Benetton F1 team Steve Matchett. F1 insider Will Buxton will serve as the team’s on-site reporter from Interlagos in Sao Paolo, Brazil.

Pre-race coverage on F1 Countdown Sunday at 10:30 a.m. ET on CNBC will feature a look back at the great moments in Brazil’s F1 history by NBC Sports Group F1 essayist Sam Posey. In addition, NBC Sports Group motorsports analyst Townsend Bell will take fans on a drive around Interlagos in the iRacing Simulator on F1 Extra on Friday at 5 p.m. ET.

Motorsports Coverage This Week on NBC, NBCSN, CNBC & NBC Sports Live Extra (subject to change):

Date Program Time (ET) Network
Thurs., November 6 NASCAR AMERICA 5 p.m. NBCSN
Auctions America – Auburn (Encore) 7 p.m. NBCSN
Auctions America – Auburn (Encore) 9 p.m. NBCSN
Fri., November 7 Auctions America – Auburn (Encore) 12 a.m. NBCSN
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix – Practice 1 7 a.m. NBC Sports Live Extra
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix – Practice 2 11 a.m. NBCSN
Road To Mercedes (Encore) 12:30 p.m. NBCSN
F1 Countdown 5 p.m. NBCSN
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix – Practice 2 (Encore) 10:30 p.m. NBCSN
Sat., November 8 F1 Brazilian Grand Prix – Practice 3 8 a.m. NBC Sports Live Extra
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix – Qualifying 11 a.m. CNBC
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix – Qualifying (Encore) 12:30 p.m. NBCSN
Sun., November 9 F1 Countdown 10:30 a.m. CNBC
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix 11 a.m. CNBC
F1 Countdown (Encore) 1 p.m. NBC
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix (Encore) 1:30 p.m. NBC
F1 Extra 3:30 p.m. NBC
F1 Brazilian Grand Prix (Encore) 4 p.m. NBCSN
F1 Extra (Encore) 6:30 p.m. NBCSN

Rahal determined to regain winning touch in 2019 IndyCar season

Photo by Shawn Gritzmacher, INDYCAR
INDYCAR
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AUSTIN, Texas – Graham Rahal entered the room with a smile on his face and a chip on his shoulder.

It was IndyCar “Media Day” and Rahal wasn’t happy with the way last season went at Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing. He was less happy with the fact some aren’t considering him a serious threat in 2019. He playfully chided with one media outlet for failing to mention his team as one to watch in 2019.

“We use that as motivation to show everybody how we are viewed,” Rahal said. “We are here to win.”

Rahal just turned 30 in January but is entering his 13thseason in big-time Indy car racing. He entered the 2007 Champ Car Series season when he was just 17. He missed his high school prom because he was racing at Houston.

“That was the luckiest day of my life,” Rahal said. “I didn’t have to go to the prom. It doesn’t get any better than that.

“Plus, I got my second career podium that weekend.”

Rahal drove to victory in his very first race in the combined IndyCar Series in the 2008 Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. He was hailed as the “Poster Boy of Unification” and a future star. What followed was a seven-year drought before he captured his second-career win in a thrilling race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.

He won two races in 2015, one in 2016 and two in 2017. He was expected to contend for victories and possibly the championship last year but struggled through a disappointing season and finished eighth in the standings.

“I’m looking forward for chance this year,” Rahal said. “Last year was a tough one for me and for the team. I’m looking forward to what my new engineer, Allen McDonald, has done so far. He is an accomplished engineer and brings a different mindset to our program this year from what we had last year. He and (fellow engineer) Eddie Jones are very close friends and that will help us from the standpoint they are on the same page.

“We needed a bit of life brought back to the team.”

Rahal believes his challenges are to get everything in order before the season starts. The team has defined the areas where it was lacking in 2019. The team needed to improve in research and development after starting behind last season.

“I’m excited for what I see, and I know in the end it will all pay off,” Rahal said. “It’s just a matter of when.

“There is a lot to be excited about for us. We are in a great position as a team. We have great sponsorship and that will allow us to push forward and do the things we need to do.”

Rahal believes at 30, he has a long time ahead of him to win races and championships and maybe even the Indianapolis 500. In order to reach those goals, however, Rahal’s team needs to regain the competitive level he displayed prior to last year.

“We’ve been fortunate to win six times,” Rahal said. “A lot of people come into this sport and never win. I fully recognize there is no reason we can’t win a lot. I don’t care what anybody writes, what anybody thinks – I really feel that when it comes to race day, we perform better than 99 percent of the other people out there.

“As a team and for myself, we have to qualify better. If we can qualify better, we’ll be a thorn in everybody’s side. We know the rear of our cars just aren’t good enough. When we need to find that extra tenth or two, it’s just not there but absolutely, we want to win.

“I don’t come here year after year to just drive around. Our sponsors don’t invest in us year after year to not see us win. We feel that. But our cars aren’t good enough and we know that.”

Rahal believes the team has identified the problems with the setup of its car. It has a deep engineering staff but hasn’t had a chance to develop the damper program and other important areas that provide a competition setup.

Takuma Sato, the winner of the 101stIndianapolis 500 when he was with Andretti Autosport, scored the team’s only victory in 2018 with a win in the Portland Grand Prix. The two are back this year and have built a respect for each other.

“He’s a good guy,” Rahal said of Sato. “Other than Helio Castroneves, Takuma is probably the happiest man on the planet. He’s a great guy and fits in well with our organization. We pride ourselves on being a family and he fits in extremely well to that.

“We need to do a better job for him as a team. He won a race last year, but we can both do better to win with both cars.

“The Andretti cars are the best right now and the Penske cars will be good. We have a lot of space to close up on those two teams but hopefully, we can do it.”