Williams endures a “race to forget” in Monaco

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Felipe Massa believes that the 2015 Monaco Grand Prix must go down as “a race to forget” for Williams after the team limped to its first weekend without points since the last race of the 2013 season.

The team had been expected to struggle around the streets of Monaco as the FW37 car is not well-suited to the tighter circuits, but few would have expected its drivers to finish 14th and 15th in the race on Sunday.

Starting from P12, Massa made a good start and looked to break into the top ten, but was hit by Pastor Maldonado and left with damage to his front wing and front tire.

Massa pitted immediately, dropping a lap down on the leaders. From then on, the race became something of a glorified test session for him, and he evenutally crossed the line in 15th place.

“Today was a very frustrating day and a race to forget for us,” Massa said. “My race was effectively over in turn one, with another car pushing me over and I was left with a lot of damage to my tire and front wing.

“The pitstop I had to make on lap one put me right at the back of the pack and I spent the rest of the race looking out for blue flags.

“The car has not had its usual performance all weekend but we know that we are heading to tracks in Canada and Austria that suit our car and we should be back fighting towards the front.”

His teammate, Valtteri Bottas, struggled to bounce back from a disappointing qualifying session that left him 16th on the grid. The Finn crossed the line in 14th place, but remained upbeat after the race.

“This has been a tough weekend that ended in an even tougher race,” Bottas said. “We tried everything to try and get some points but with the pace we had it wasn’t possible today.

“We tried the two-stop strategy which never really came to us, with the safety car coming at just the wrong time. There are not too many positives from the weekend but plenty we can learn from as to why we struggled.

“We know we still have a good car and go to races in the next few weeks where we should be able to demonstrate our true performance.”

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.