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Sainz: No personal problems with Verstappen

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Carlos Sainz Jr. has responded to suggestions of a rift with former Toro Rosso teammate Max Verstappen by saying there are no personal problems between the two Formula 1 drivers.

Red Bull announced last week that Verstappen would be joining its senior F1 team from the Spanish Grand Prix onwards, with Daniil Kvyat moving in the opposite direction.

While Kvyat’s recent poor form was cited as the main reason for the move, Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko claimed it was also done to ease some of the tension at Toro Rosso between Sainz and Verstappen.

Despite enjoying many close on-track battles with Verstappen, Sainz said that he had no personal problems with the Dutchman.

“I think the personal relationship that Max and I have is not a big issue honestly,” Sainz said.

“I think we both always maintain the respect out of the track. I think it’s more a matter of a team perspective of how the team was working. That’s where Franz Tost and Helmut marko come into play and take the decision.

“Between Max and myself there was always respect and good vibes with each other. Out there, it was just a matter of engineering, just maybe being a comfortable team.

“That’s why they decided to take these decisions internally.”

Verstappen quickly interjected by saying: “I think we still need to plan when we’re going to go go-karting together”, the two having discussed it prior to the press conference.

In the wake of Verstappen’s departure and Kvyat’s arrival, there has been a re-shuffle of the engineering teams at Toro Rosso, with Verstappen’s engineer Xevi Pujolar exiting after the Russian Grand Prix.

Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

Extreme E drivers Andretti
Extreme E
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The Extreme E team formed by Andretti Autosport and United Autosports named Catie Munnings and Timmy Hansen as its drivers Monday for the series’ inaugural 2021 season.

Munnings is a successful veteran of rally series. Hansen is a past winner and champion in the World Rallycross Championship.

They both will race in the environmentally conscious electric SUV series that will hold events in five areas around the world that are threatened by climate change. Chip Ganassi Racing and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton also are fielding cars in Extreme E, which will feature male and female co-drivers on every team.

Catie Munnings

“I’m so excited to join Andretti United Extreme E,” Munnings said in a release. ““I was really intrigued when I first heard about Extreme E, I just knew I had to be involved. The male / female racing partnership is a fantastic and exciting new concept. The season has incredible locations and the racing will be very exciting. It will be a new challenge for the teams and drivers, and I’m so thrilled to be working with such a strong team.

“The championship is a really innovative concept, it’s combining motorsport and science and will produce an important legacy in each race location. Bringing the platform that motorsport has in line with the awareness that the planet needs right now is awesome and a really important message.”

Timmy Hansen

Said Hansen: “Going into the Extreme E will be a new chapter in my career, one that I am extremely excited about. It is something brand new, not only for me, but the whole of motorsport. The format is something

we’ve never seen before. I’m also delighted to be able to carry the message of something bigger – talking about the environment and doing something good for the world – that’s something that really drives me. It’s going to be a big adventure in life to see these locations and I’m going to do my best in carrying this responsibility and hopefully making people aware of the challenges we have in the world, together with our passion for racing.”