Hamilton bemused by Red Bull’s call for equalization in F1

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Lewis Hamilton has said that he finds Red Bull’s recent complaints about Mercedes’ dominance in Formula 1 “funny” given the team’s own success in the sport over the past five years.

Following another dominant display by Mercedes at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix two weeks ago, Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko said that the team could quit the sport unless steps were made to level the playing field.

His thoughts were echoed by Red Bull team principal Christian Horner, who believes that the FIA should tweak the regulations to give the rest of the grid a chance to catch up with Mercedes.

For Hamilton, this comments were a source of humor given that Red Bull enjoyed a similar level of dominance in F1 between 2010 and 2013, winning four straight drivers’ and constructors’ championships.

“I find it quite funny and interesting that the opinion is coming from individuals who have had so much success,” Hamilton said.

“Also bearing in mind it has only been one race, so to already have comments like this is what I find funny.”

Hamilton believes that it is simply a case of Mercedes working hard and doing a better job than Red Bull over the past few years to give itself such an advantage.

“It was a big step for me to come to this team that had so many years of poor performance,” Hamilton said. “They hadn’t had the success of other teams, but not once did this team complain to others in order to equalize things.

“Now we are the best team. We have pulled together and done an amazing job. It is not just me here. There are 1,000 people back at the two factories who are working day and night to build the best car.

“We have done that with the same rules and resources as the other teams have had. I am very proud of that.”

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.