Ricciardo recovers from late run-in with Rosberg to claim first podium in 2015


Daniel Ricciardo bounced back from a late run-in with Nico Rosberg to claim his first podium finish of the 2015 Formula 1 season in the Hungarian Grand Prix on Sunday.

Ricciardo came into contention for the race win following a safety car period with 20 laps to go, running third behind Rosberg, who in turn was behind leader Sebastian Vettel.

In a bid to challenge for the race win, Ricciardo tried to pass Rosberg with a lunge at the first corner on lap 64, only for the two drivers to make contact. Rosberg was left with a puncture that caused him to drop down the order and finish the race in eighth place.

Ricciardo was forced to pit for a new front wing, but managed to get back out on track in third place with fresh tires, allowing him to post the fastest lap of the race.

Although he was unable to catch Red Bull teammate Daniil Kvyat before the end of the race, the Australian was still delighted with the result in light of his many incidents.

“It was a crazy race,” Ricciardo said. “There was contact in turn one, I thought there was a lot of damage, I thought the race was over. Contact on the restart with Lewis, I thought the race was over, and then contact with Nico as well.

“We were resilient today. I left it all on the track. I put my heart into everything today, and I think that’s the way Jules [Bianchi] would have wanted it. I owe that race to him.

“I’m very grateful to be on the podium. It feels like a victory. It’s been a long time, a long season for me. I feel I gained some strength today. I owe this one to him.”

The stewards did investigate the collision between Ricciardo and Rosberg, only to decide that neither driver was entirely to blame for their coming together.

“I came from a long way back,” Ricciardo explained. “We know we don’t have the speed on the straights. I knew we were quick enough to win.

“I saw Seb wasn’t getting away, so I thought if I could get Nico then I could probably get Seb. The laps were counting down, I saw a gap and I went for it.

“At that stage, the move was clean, and then it just looked like Nico cut back on the exit and came across. I didn’t have enough room and I touched his tire.

“It was close. It was disappointed we both ruined our chances of the win, but I wanted to leave it all out there.”

Kyle Busch interests McLaren for Indy 500, but team is leaning toward experience

McLaren Indy Kyle Busch
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With Arrow McLaren SP heavily weighing a fourth car for the Indy 500 next year, Kyle Busch is a candidate but not at the top of the IndyCar team’s list.

McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown addressed the possibility Wednesday morning during a video news conference with Gavin Ward, the team’s newly named racing director.

“I have not personally spoken with Kyle Busch, but you can read into that that someone else in our organization has,” Brown said. “We want to make sure if we run a fourth car, we’re in the mindset that we want someone that is experienced around the 500. It’s such an important race, and from a going for the championship point of view, we’ve got three drivers that we want to have finish as strong as possible, so if we ran a fourth car, we’d want to be additive, not only for the fourth car itself, but to the three cars and so bringing in someone who’s not done it before potentially doesn’t add that value from an experience point of view.”

Busch will race the No. 8 Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing next season in NASCAR under a new deal that will allow the two-time Cup Series champion to make his Indy 500 debut. Busch, who had a previous deal to run the Indy 500 nixed by Joe Gibbs Racing, openly courted Chevy IndyCar teams to contact him during his introductory news conference with RCR last month.

After Team Penske (which has given no indications of a fourth car at Indy alongside champion Will Power, Josef Newgarden and Scott McLaughlin), McLaren is the second-best Chevy organization, and it’s fielded an extra Indy 500 car the past two years for Juan Pablo Montoya. The Associated Press reported last month that McLaren was in “serious conversation” about running Busch at Indy with Menards sponsorship.

But with its restructured management, the team is in the midst of significant expansion for 2023. AMSP is adding a third full-time car for 2016 Indy 500 winner Alexander Rossi to team with Pato O’Ward and Felix Rosenqvist, and a massive new shop also is being built in the Indianapolis area.

“(It’s) not because of him but purely because of experience,” Brown said of Busch. “He’s an awesome talent and would be huge, huge news for the speedway. But yeah, I think everyone is under consideration if we decide to do it, but experience is right at the top of the list as far as what’s going to be the most important to us.”

And it seems likely there will be a veteran joining Rossi, O’Ward and Rosenqvist at the Brickyard.

“A fourth car at the 500 is very much under consideration,” Brown said. “I wouldn’t even want to get ahead of ourselves, but we wouldn’t be ruling out a fourth car in the future on a full-time basis. That definitely wouldn’t be for ’23. But as we expand the team and get into larger facilities and things of that nature, it’s something that Gavin and I have spoken about.

“I think we would be in a position to run a fourth car at the 500 this upcoming year. If we do decide to do that, we’ll make that decision soon for maximum preparation, and I would say we’re open minded to a fourth car in ’24 and beyond and probably will make that decision middle of next year in time to be prepared if we did decide to do that.”

Brown also addressed the future of Alex Palou, who will be racing for Chip Ganassi Racing next season after also signing a deal with McLaren. Though Brown declined to get into specifics about whether Palou had signed a new deal, he confirmed Palou will continue to test “our Formula One car from time to time.

“Everyone has reached an amicable solution,” Brown said. “We’ve now had Alex in our Formula One car as we have Pato. That will continue in the future, which we’re quite excited about. At this point we’re laser-focused on 2023 and glad to have the noise behind us and now just want to put our head down and get on with the job with the three drivers we have.”