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Rosberg to wait until summer for Mercedes contract extension

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Nico Rosberg will be made to wait until the summer before a decision is made on a possible contract extension at Mercedes.

Rosberg signed a new two-year deal with Mercedes in 2014 that gives the German marque the option for a third, potentially lasting until the end of the 2017 Formula 1 season.

Next year’s F1 driver market is shaping up to be one of the most volatile in years, with all drivers except Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel seemingly free to move for 2017.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff recently sent out a warning to Hamilton and Rosberg, saying that he would to hesitate to change the line-up if tension between the duo spilled over and had a negative impact on the team.

Speculation of a possible change to the driver line-up at Mercedes will only continue after Wolff told Speed Week that no decision would be made on Rosberg’s contract until the summer at the earliest.

“We are talking about an extension in the summer at the earliest,” Wolff said. “Until then, let’s look at what happens.”

Wolff did stress that his warning regarding intra-team relations applied to both of his drivers, revealing that Hamilton had relevant clauses within his contract that would allow Mercedes to end it early.

“There are clauses in his contract, as is the case with all the other staff, in the case of damaging the company, for example,” Wolff said.

As such, it appears that Vettel is the only driver secure of his existing drive for the 2017 season, adding yet more fuel to 2016’s ‘silly season’.

IndyCar entry lists for Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway

IndyCar entry lists Indianapolis
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There are 25 drivers on the NTT IndyCar Series entry lists at Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course with a few new yet familiar faces for the Oct. 2-3 race weekend.

Four-time champion Sebastien Bourdais will make his season debut in the No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet (shifting Dalton Kellett to the No. 41) with AJ Foyt Racing, which he is joining full time next season. James Hinchcliffe, who had run three races with Andretti Autosport, will return in place of Zach Veach in the No. 26 Dallara-Honda. Helio Castroneves will drive Arrow McLaren SP’s No. 7 Dallara-Chevy for Oliver Askew, who is out with concussion-like symptoms.

Sage Karam, who has two IndyCar starts this year at IMS (the road course on July 4 and the Indy 500 on Aug. 23), also will return to the series in Dreyer & Reinbold’s No. 24 Dallara-Chevrolet.

HARVEST GP ENTRY LISTS: Friday l Saturday

Friday and Saturday of the Harvest GP presented by GMR will mark the second and third races this season on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. While the July 4 race on the circuit was 80 laps, Friday’s distance is 85 laps, and Saturday will be a 75-lap event.

Championship leader Scott Dixon led 26 of 80 laps to win the July 4 race at the IMS road course. With three races remaining in the series, the five-time series champion enters with a 72-point lead on Josef Newgarden.

Click here to see who’s on the IndyCar entry lists in Race 1 and in Race 2 for the Harvest GP presented by GMR at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.


START TIMES AND TV INFO FOR INDYCAR AT INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE (all times ET):

Thursday

IndyCar NTT Series practice: 2:25-3:40 p.m., NBC Sports Gold

IndyCar qualifying, Race 1: 6:20 p.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

Friday

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 1: 3:30 p.m. (green flag, 5 p.m.), USA Network, NBC Sports Gold

Saturday

—IndyCar qualifying: 10:20 a.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 2: 2:30 p.m (green flag, 2:31 p.m.)., NBC, NBC Sports Gold