2013 GP2 champion Fabio Leimer loses Super Formula seat

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2013 GP3 Series champion Fabio Leimer will no longer be racing in the Japanese Super Formula series this season after parting company with Team Infinite Mugen.

Leimer had been due to race in the premier Japanese single seater championship in 2015, having spent the last year working with Pirelli as a test driver and racing in the FIA World Endurance Championship for Rebellion Racing.

However, it was announced on Friday that the Swiss racer would no longer be taking part in Super Formula this season due to financial problems.

“This season, Fabio Leimer had been scheduled to compete in the Super Formula series for Team Infinite,” a statement from the team reads. “[As he is] unable to fulfil the contract terms that had been entered into, we have with regret decided to cancel the driver contract with Mr. Leimer.”

Leimer issued his own statement, and said that the deal fell through due to an issue with his representative in Japan.

“Of course I am extremely disappointed,” Leimer said. “We went for the Japan adventure after we had found a representative in Japan.

“We signaled from the beginning that any budget had to be secured by him. Unfortunately, his promises and the trust placed in him were not tenable.”

“However, we are already working on solutions for the coming season, which we can finance ourselves. I wish the Mugen team every success and apologize for the circumstances which have arisen through us.”

Leimer has no other confirmed plans for the new season, but is a potential candidate for the available seat at Manor Marussia F1 Team, given that he does hold a valid FIA super licence from his GP2 title win.

In other Super Formula news, British youngster William Buller has confirmed his participation in this year’s championship, joining Kondo Racing alongside compatriot James Rossiter.

Zach Veach splits with Andretti Autosport for rest of IndyCar season

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Zach Veach will be leaving his Andretti Autosport ride with three races remaining in the season, choosing to explore options after the decision was made he wouldn’t return for 2021.

In a Wednesday release, Andretti Autosport said a replacement driver for the No. 26 Dallara-Honda would be named in the coming days. The NTT IndyCar Series will race Oct. 2-3 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course and then conclude the season Oct. 25 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Veach was ranked 11th in the points standings through 11 races of his third season with Andretti. Since a fourth in the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, he hadn’t finished higher than 14th.

“The decision was made that I will not be returning in 2021 with Andretti Autosport in the No. 26 Gainbridge car,” Veach said in the Andretti release. “This, along with knowing that limited testing exists for teams due to COVID, have led me to the decision to step out of the car for the remainder of the 2020 IndyCar season. I am doing this to allow the team to have time with other drivers as they prepare for 2021, and so that I can also explore my own 2021 options.

“This is the hardest decision I have ever made, but to me, racing is about family, and it is my belief that you take care of your family. Andretti Autosport is my family and I feel this is what is best to help us all reach the next step. I will forever be grateful to Michael and the team for all of their support over the years. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for a relationship that started many years ago with Road to Indy. I will also be forever grateful to Dan Towriss for his friendship and for the opportunity he and Gainbridge have given me.

“My love for this sport and the people involved is unmeasurable, and I look forward to continuing to be amongst the racing world and fans in 2021.”

Said team owner Michael Andretti: “We first welcomed Zach to the Andretti team back in his USF2000 days and have enjoyed watching him grow and evolve as a racer, and a person. His decision to allow us to use the last few races to explore our 2021 options shows the measure of his character.

“Zach has always placed team and family first, and we’re very happy to have had him as part of ours for so many years. We wish him the best in whatever 2021 may bring and will always consider him a friend.”

Andretti fields five full-time cars for Veach, Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Colton Herta.

It also has fielded James Hinchcliffe in three races this season.