IndyCar: Briscoe goes airborne in frightening crash, but emerges unscathed

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In one of the most frightening wrecks of the season, Ryan Briscoe went airborne and flipped end-over-end on the final lap of Saturday’s MAV TV 500 IndyCar race – and then simply walked away, thankfully uninjured.

As the white flag lap began at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., Juan Pablo Montoya’s car came up on Ryan Hunter-Reay, who explained what happened from there.

WATCH: Full replay of Saturday’s race

“I wasn’t expecting Montoya to come up,” Hunter-Reay told NBCSN. “I was just sitting next to, not sure, and waiting to get into Turn 1 and Montoya came right up and clipped the front of the car.”

Hunter-Reay got on the brakes, but the impact sent his car hooking to the left and right into Briscoe’s right front.

Briscoe went end-over-end, flipped upside down and hit hard into the ACS infield turf.

“It’s tough, it was pack racing,” Hunter-Reay said. “It was crazy. I was getting pushed down and up comes Montoya. I’m just glad Briscoe is OK. That was a nasty flip he took there. It could have gone a lot worse.”

Beccy Gordon, Hunter-Reay’s wife, was quite upset about both the closing laps, as well as the last-lap incident.

It spoiled what potentially might have been a top-five finish for Hunter-Reay and Briscoe, as well.

“One lap to go,” he quipped. “Figures we couldn’t make it to the finish. It was looking like a good finish. We turned some things around and we’ll look to do that again in Milwaukee.”

Briscoe took the incident in stride.

”First thing I did was to call my wife and tell her I’m ok,” Briscoe said with a smile. “She’s more distraught than any of us.”

Indeed, his spouse, sportscaster Nicole Briscoe, was.

“No one made that happen intentionally,” Ryan Briscoe added. “The racing was so close all day. Unfortunately, something bad did happen, but we’re all okay, which is a testament to the safety of the cars.”

In a sense, being deprived of a good finish actually wound up probably hurting Briscoe more than the actual impact itself.

“We wish it didn’t (happen),” he said. “It’s not the way we wanted to go out. It would have been really nice to bring a strong result home.”

Briscoe then took time out to wish fellow driver James Hinchcliffe well and tried to leave Fontana with an optimistic outlook.

“We want to keep wishing Hinch a quick recovery,” Briscoe said. “We’ve got a good car and a great team and I think we’re going to have a real shot at winning races this year.”

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Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

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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.”