Gutierrez enjoying life with Ferrari in third driver role


He may not be racing in Formula 1 this season, but Esteban Gutierrez is enjoying life with Scuderia Ferrari in his role as third driver.

After two years with Sauber, Gutierrez opted not to push for a new contract for the team in 2015 and instead secured a place in the Ferrari support team, working under Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel.

Speaking following the launch of the new car, Gutierrez admitted that he felt emotional to be a member of the Ferrari team and is preparing himself as a back-up to the full-time drivers.

“I have to say it’s been such a great experience to be here these weeks, working very closely with the team,” Gutierrez said. “To wear the red colors puts a very special emotional status, a different level of emotions which obviously pushes you to do great things around here.

“I will be following all races and all the pre-season testing. My role at the moment is as a third driver, and I’m very responsible to be ready in case of any circumstances that can come up. That’s at the moment my main focus, so I’m preparing myself physically.

“Also the integration with the team is something very important to have; to get to know how the team works, what’s the mentality, the different technical aspects of the car in order to understand the whole picture and be as prepared as possible.”

Despite not racing in 2015, Gutierrez is excited for the return of the Mexican Grand Prix, with the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez welcoming F1 for the first time in 23 years this November.

“For Mexico, it’s some of the best news we’ve had so far in recent years in motorsport,” he said. “This means the interest in F1 is increasing, and that obviously brings a very nice motivation to me as a driver to represent something very big and hopefully in the future to take part in the grand prix and to have great success there.”

IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:

Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change