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Bruno Senna hopeful of Brazilian Formula E race in the future

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Bruno Senna hopes that Brazil can take advantage of the success of its drivers in Formula E by hosting an ePrix in the future.

Senna is one of three Brazilian drivers on the grid in Formula E, racing alongside Nelson Piquet Jr. and Lucas di Grassi.

Piquet won the inaugural Formula E championship last year, while di Grassi is fighting for this year’s title and finished third in the season one standings.

Brazil had been due to host a race in Rio de Janeiro in November 2014, only for the race to be cancelled seven months earlier.

Senna said that he would love to see Formula E head to his home country, but is aware that financial problems could prevent this from happening.

“We have three Brazilian drivers. One of them right now is fighting for the championship, one of them won the championship last year so Brazil is doing really well in this championship,” Senna told NBC Sports.

“I think it’s a shame if we don’t go there and maximize on this great performance that we’re having. It’s very difficult, Brazil is in difficult financial conditions right now.

“I just hope that we can get the right people convinced.”

Formula E returns next Saturday with the first Mexico City ePrix, taking place on part of the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez that hosted last November’s Formula 1 race.

“Mexico is a very different animal. It’s a dedicated track, extremely smooth compared to what we race, so I think we’re going to have to see a very different setup on the car there to maximize the circuit,” Senna said.

“I’m curious to see what is going to happen there. Hopefully we’ll be on top. We’re going to have to review the last two races and we have some things that we need to work on. Then hopefully we can come out in the top five next time out.”

Helio Castroneves ‘hustling’ for IndyCar, IMSA rides; talking with four to five teams

Helio Castroneves IMSA IndyCar
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As his season gathers steam, Helio Castroneves said his prospects for finding new rides for 2021 in IMSA and IndyCar also are gaining momentum.

The three-time Indianapolis 500 winner said Monday he is optimistic about landing in either or perhaps a combination of both series when Team Penske and Acura end their DPi partnership after this season.

“A lot of people I spoke with, four to five teams, are interested,” Castroneves said. “Whether it’s doing Indy 500 only, whether it’s pushing to do full time or do the sports cars as well. It’s been a very nice conversation.

LOOKING AHEADTeam Penske drivers seeking new rides for 2021

“I have a lot of respect for all the teams that have been talking, and I feel the same feedback. We just have to wait for their (sponsor) connections, and I’m also looking for some connections on my side as well, so hopefully we’ll be able to put this together and get something very soon.”

Given two decades of success with Penske in IndyCar and IMSA, Castroneves’ resume hardly needs burnishing. But the Brazilian has combined with co-driver Ricky Taylor in the No. 7 Acura DPi to win the past two overall victories at Road America and Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.

But Castroneves, who doesn’t have a manager, said he has been working the phones hard rather than wait for the strong results to bring in the calls.

“At this point, I feel like I’m the one who needs to be talking to them because people need to know I want to continue racing and understand my desire,” Castroneves, 45, said. “There is opportunity, no question, in both (IndyCar and IMSA), which I’m really happy about it. However, because of the COVID-19, a lot of things sometimes have to be a little delayed. But I’m excited. Whatever the opportunity and whatever destiny guides me, whether IndyCar or sports cars, trust me I’ll be as happy as it could be and doing my 100 percent like I always did.

“It’s like politics, you need to be out there, good news or bad news. People have to make notice of your presence. I’m hustling. I want to continue to keep it going. Hopefully, we’ll have good news very soon.”

The news has been all good lately on track for Castroneves and Taylor, who hope to continue their run Sunday at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

The No. 6 duo has surged to sixth in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship standings, 10 points out of the lead with four races remaining. After thinking there was “no hope” to be competitive after opening the season with three consecutive poor finishes, Taylor now sees an opportunity for a happy ending.

“With the program going away, Helio has won all the big races and given so much back to the team and left such a mark, he’s really part of Penske history,” Taylor said. “For me, it’s been an opportunity of a lifetime to be a part of it. I’d like to leave my little mark as well. Helio has won everything except for a championship.

“Obviously, we’ve won races already together, but we can win a championship now. I think if both of us can do that together and both win our first championship for ‘The Captain,’ that would be an absolute dream come true, and we can tie a bow on it and be happy.”