Vettel disappointed after pit error costs him podium finish

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Sebastian Vettel was left disappointed on Sunday after a problem at his pit stop cost him a podium finish in the Austrian Grand Prix.

Vettel started the race from third place on the grid, and had been tipped to challenge the Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg at the front after displaying a good long-run pace on Friday.

Although he could not keep pace with the leading pair, Vettel enjoyed a comfortable buffer to fourth-placed Felipe Massa ahead of his first pit stop on lap 36 of the race.

However, a problem with the wheel nut on his right-rear tire forced Vettel to sit stationary in his pit box for 13 seconds, causing him to fall behind Massa in the process.

The German driver did catch the Brazilian towards the end of the race, he was unable to make a pass and had to settle for fourth place at the flag.

“The issue during the pit-stop is something that can happen,” Vettel said. “I had a problem, but generally the guys are the quickest on the pit lane so there’s nobody to blame.

“We are a team and when you push to the limit these things can occur. I would have preferred to get the trophy for third place of course, but we’ll come back next year with the same objective. The car was very good, I think we made another step ahead and we had a great pace.

“Today was a bit disappointing because we’ve lost the podium, but I’m sure tomorrow it will be better and we’ll focus on the next race. The team in Maranello is very committed to this and they’re all working hard.”

Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene admitted that there were few positives that could be taken from the weekend, particularly in light of Kimi Raikkonen’s retirement on the first lap of the race.

“Which positives can we take from this weekend? Not many,” Arrivabene said. “But certainly once more we are aware that Sebastian was the big asset we could get this year, together with a team which is fully committed and now is said to be the second force in the championship.

“But I’d like us to be the first, and that means we have to commit ourselves beyond what’s possible. We must use whatever we have available and try to get as close as we can to our main competitors, taking advantage of their mistakes.

“Also, as per the time we lost during Seb’s unfortunate pit stop, we must work with humbleness: because, even if everything had gone well, that wouldn’t have been enough to beat both Mercedes on track. But this only prods us to never give up.”

Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

Extreme E drivers Andretti
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The Extreme E team formed by Andretti Autosport and United Autosports named Catie Munnings and Timmy Hansen as its drivers Monday for the series’ inaugural 2021 season.

Munnings is a successful veteran of rally series. Hansen is a past winner and champion in the World Rallycross Championship.

They both will race in the environmentally conscious electric SUV series that will hold events in five areas around the world that are threatened by climate change. Chip Ganassi Racing and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton also are fielding cars in Extreme E, which will feature male and female co-drivers on every team.

Catie Munnings

“I’m so excited to join Andretti United Extreme E,” Munnings said in a release. ““I was really intrigued when I first heard about Extreme E, I just knew I had to be involved. The male / female racing partnership is a fantastic and exciting new concept. The season has incredible locations and the racing will be very exciting. It will be a new challenge for the teams and drivers, and I’m so thrilled to be working with such a strong team.

“The championship is a really innovative concept, it’s combining motorsport and science and will produce an important legacy in each race location. Bringing the platform that motorsport has in line with the awareness that the planet needs right now is awesome and a really important message.”

Timmy Hansen

Said Hansen: “Going into the Extreme E will be a new chapter in my career, one that I am extremely excited about. It is something brand new, not only for me, but the whole of motorsport. The format is something

we’ve never seen before. I’m also delighted to be able to carry the message of something bigger – talking about the environment and doing something good for the world – that’s something that really drives me. It’s going to be a big adventure in life to see these locations and I’m going to do my best in carrying this responsibility and hopefully making people aware of the challenges we have in the world, together with our passion for racing.”