Munoz confirmed at Andretti for 2016

AP
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Carlos Munoz will return to Andretti Autosport for the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series season, his third full-time with the team and fourth overall.

He continues alongside Ryan Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti, the latter of whom has not been formally confirmed but is expected to be so very soon.

Full release is below:

Four-time IndyCar Series champions Andretti Autosport confirmed today that Carlos Muñoz will return to the team’s roster for 2016 Verizon IndyCar season. Muñoz, who will pilot the No. 26 Honda, returns alongside teammates drivers Ryan Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti.

“Really happy to join the team again for 2016 – it will be my fifth year with Andretti,” said Muñoz. “I’m really thankful to Michael (Andretti), JF (Thormann, COO) and the whole team. I’m really happy to be able to return for another year. The 2016 schedule looks really nice and we hope to fight for an Indy 500 win and a championship.”

Muñoz made his Verizon IndyCar Series debut at the 2013 Indianapolis 500 where he earned Rookie of the Year honors for starting on the front row and, after leading the historic race for 12 laps, finishing in the second position. The 23-year-old continued with Andretti to complete two full seasons (2014, 2015), taking him to his first career win on the streets of Detroit (2015) along with seven top-10 finishes during the 2015 season.

“Carlos has been part of the Andretti family of drivers for several years now,” said team owner Michael Andretti. “We’re really pleased with his growth as a driver and look forward to a competitive 2016.”

Prior to joining the IndyCar ranks, the Colombian recorded five Indy Lights pole positions and four wins (Barber, Long Beach, Pocono and Fontana) in 2013, marking his career-best year in two seasons of Indy Lights competition. Throughout his time spent at the final step of the Mazda Road to Indy ladder, Muñoz has accrued six wins, six pole positions, 10 podiums and 20 top-10 finishes. The Indy Lights veteran came away with a fifth-place finish in the 2012 championship point’s standings and third for 2013.

Sergio Perez wins rain-delayed race in Singapore over Leclerc; Verstappen seventh

Sergio Perez Singapore
Clive Rose/Getty Images,
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SINGAPORE — Max Verstappen’s Formula One title celebrations were put on hold after the Red Bull driver placed seventh at a chaotic Singapore Grand Prix, won by his teammate Sergio Perez on Sunday.

Perez’s second win of the season saw him finish 7.6 seconds ahead of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, with Leclerc’s teammate Carlos Sainz Jr. in third place.

Perez was investigated for a potential safety car infringement but still kept the win after a 5-second time penalty for dropping too far back after being warned.

Verstappen had won the past five races but needed to win here and finish 22 points ahead of Leclerc to be crowned champion for a second straight season. That could happen next weekend at the Japanese GP.

Verstappen made a mistake after the second safety car restart, following AlphaTauri driver Yuki Tsunoda’s crash on Lap 36. When Verstappen tried to overtake Lando Norris’ McLaren, he locked his tires and needed to pit again.

Leclerc started from pole position with Verstappen going from eighth after a team blunder in qualifying.

The race start was delayed by more than an hour to clear water off the Marina Bay Circuit track following heavy rainfall. Drivers had to finish the 61-lap race within a two-hour window; 59 laps were completed.

Tricky conditions saw the virtual safety car deployed three times and DRS was allowed with about 30 minutes remaining.

Perez made a good start and jumped past Leclerc while Verstappen dropped several places. The first safety car was on Lap 8 when Zhou Guanyu’s Alfa Romeo was cut off by Nicholas Latifi’s Williams.

Perez got away cleanly at the restart, while Verstappen climbed into seventh behind Fernando Alonso – whose 350th F1 race ended disappointingly when his engine failed on Lap 21, bringing out the first VSC.

With the track still damp, drivers decided against changing to quicker tires – apart from Mercedes’ George Russell, who struggled for grip.

Hamilton made a rare mistake on Lap 33 and thudded into the crash barrier. Soon after, the leading drivers changed tires in a flurry of stops. They did so just before the safety car was deployed again following Tsunoda’s error.

Verstappen overtook Sebastian Vettel’s Aston Martin right at the end for seventh place.