FIA stewards take no action over five-car incident on first lap of British Grand Prix

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The FIA stewards have confirmed that no action will be taken over the five-car incident on the first lap of Sunday’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

On lap one of the race, an incident at Farm involving Daniel Ricciardo, Romain Grosjean, Pastor Maldonado, Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button sparked an early safety car period.

A chain reaction was caused when Ricciardo and Grosjean made contact, forcing the Frenchman into Lotus teammate Maldonado.

In turn, this forced Alonso to jolt to the right and into the path of McLaren teammate Button, launching the Briton into the air.

Grosjean and Button were both eliminated on the spot, whilst Maldonado managed to return to the pits before retiring from the race.

The stewards confirmed in the aftermath of the incident that they would be investigating after the race, when they deemed that no one driver was to blame.

“No further action is warranted,” a report from the FIA read.

“After hearing from all the drivers involved in the turn three incident at the start of the race, it was decided that no driver was wholly or predominately to blame.”

Speaking after the race, Grosjean suggested that Ricciardo was in fact to blame for the incident after underestimating his brakes and tires on the opening lap.

“That was a very short race for the team and I feel for everyone here at Silverstone and at Enstone,” the Frenchman said. “Daniel must have thought his brakes and tires would be able to slow him better than they did and the result was the end of both my and Pastor’s race.

“No-one likes to end a grand prix like that as so much effort goes into making and preparing the cars. I know we have many fans who want to see us race so I feel for them too.”

After being resigned to his first retirement in three races, Maldonado was surprisingly upbeat and passive about the incident.

“At first I thought I had a puncture and would be able to return to the pits and re-join the race but unfortunately the damage to the car was more serious than that and I had to retire,” Maldonado said.

“There is nothing you can do in situations like these as it’s all part of racing. Now my focus is on the next race where we’ll be trying our very best as always.”

Ricciardo would ultimately retire from the race due to an electrical issue, whilst Alonso managed to finish in tenth place and score his first point of the 2015 season.

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.