Lindsey takes wrong exit, ends up driving through infield at Rolex 24

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As the Rolex 24 at Daytona begins to draw to a close and night became day once again, fans were offered one of the more surreal sights courtesy of Patrick Lindsey.

Racing in the No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche GT3 R, Lindsey hit trouble when one of the axles on his car began to pop in and out before coming loose and forcing him to slow.

Lindsey tried taking an exit road in a bid to avoid causing a stoppage on track or holding up the field, only to find himself driving through the infield and contending with public traffic.

“First of all I need to know if I can plead the fifth if that’s a public road, if there are any laws or anything, if I maybe need to shut up!” Lindsey joked before explaining what happened.

“I lost drive coming out of [Turn] 5. We were having an axle issue, it was popping in and out. Sure enough, the thing popped out. I lost forward drive so I took the exit road back. I didn’t want to cause a race stoppage or anything stupid like that or risk anything.

“First of all I got to sit there for a minute while the guy woke up and opened up the gate. I don’t know what time it was but people were just kind of foggy. I made it through there. I didn’t exactly know where I was but I knew there was a road there somewhere.

“People are walking, having their morning coffee, and there’s a race car behind them. And the cars this year are a lot quieter. I’ll be damned if we don’t have a horn because there’s nothing you can do except just wait for them to figure out that there’s a race car there. As soon as they did they were kind enough to jump out of the way.

“People are coming through the tunnel, and they’re looking at cars going on the banking and looking at people tailgating. They’re looking everywhere but their rear-view mirror. They have no idea, anything could be coming up behind them.

“I might have made an unkind gesture to the first car that didn’t get out of the way, then I was like well someone’s going to get this on camera, so I better just be polite, do the right thing. I don’t want to embarrass myself. Eventually I made it back.

“The worst part was because I didn’t have drive I couldn’t go very quickly. When I did have clear road I was still limping along at 10 mph.

“Everybody had a nice long look and apparently a good laugh about it. If nothing else it’ll be a good memory and a good story I can tell.”

Lindsey did however insist that he did know where he was going and knew full well what lay ahead.

“I did know where I was going. Once I made it to the main road I did know where I was going,” Lindsey said.

“However, I’ve had experience trying to get in and out of here during the race, and I knew I was in for a world of hurt because the traffic can be just paralyzing.”

NEOM McLaren Formula E announces Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast for 2023 season

McLaren Formula E Hughes
McLaren Racing
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Doubling down on their commitment to electric auto sports, McLaren Racing announced Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast to compete in the 2023 Formula E Series (FE), which completes their driver lineup.

The NEOM McLaren FE team was formed by the acquisition of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team that won the 2021 and 2022 championships with Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries behind the wheel.

“Today’s announcement feels like a long time coming,” said Ian James, managing director of NEOM McLaren Electric Racing in a release. “Since May this year, when we first announced McLaren Racing’s entry into Formula E, we have been working tirelessly to get in place the best possible team and structure for sustainable success.

“On the one hand, we have been working on the retention of the amazing talent that already was in place before going into the transitional phase. I’m proud to say I think we’ve done a great job on that front.

“On the other hand, we have been focusing on putting in place new processes and new talent – and the latter includes the drivers.”

The driver lineup clasps the two hands together.

Hughes brings 10 years racing experience in single seater cars, including a role with the acquired Mercedes-EQ team as a reserve and development driver for the past two seasons. He is the 2013 BRDC Formula 4 champion and has multiple wins in Formula 2, including two in 2020.

Announced in August, Rast joins the team after earning two podium finishes and six top-fives in 22 career Formula E starts for Audi Sport ABT before returning to the DTM Series last year. Rast’s best finish in Formula E came in the Puebla E Prix when he finished second to teammate Lucas di Grassi by less than a half second.

McLaren’s commitment to Formula E comes one year after they entered the Extreme E rally series in 2022 with Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour in the driver lineup. After a modest start to the season, the McLaren XE drivers crossed the finish line first in Round 4 in Chile, but were assessed a time penalty that dropped them to fifth. Last week in the season finale in Uruguay, they held onto a hard-earned second place finish.