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Gutierrez: Haas problems making me look bad

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Esteban Gutierrez claims that the problems that the new Haas Formula 1 Team is facing with its car are making him look bad.

Gutierrez joined NASCAR team co-owner Gene Haas’ new F1 operation at the beginning of the season after spending a year in a reserve role with Ferrari.

The Mexican is yet to score points with Haas, enduring a points drought in F1 that dates back to the 2013 Japanese Grand Prix when he finished seventh for Sauber.

Gutierrez finished 17th in first practice for the Spanish Grand Prix on Friday before ending the second session 21st overall, and was limited to nine laps in the afternoon by an electrical issue.

Speaking to reporters after practice, Gutierrez made no secret of his frustration, saying that the issues with the car mean his results do not reflect the work he is putting in.

“I honestly put myself aside from this because it’s not really my responsibility to fix the car,” Gutierrez said.

“The team has to get on top of this. I am here to drive, to drive as fast as possible and it is what I really love doing.

“It’s not nice because it’s making me look very bad to the outside as a driver.

“All the f*****g great job I’m doing on the inside is not really perceived by the outside.

“So it’s a little bit frustrating on that side and also showing my pace I’ve been quick on everything, I just hope to get the car that I deserve in order to put the results on the paper.”

Despite his struggles, Gutierrez said that he does not feel under pressure to perform, believing that it instead lies with those responsible for the issues with the car.

“I don’t worry about myself. At the moment I feel very good,” Gutierrez said.

“Every time I drive the car I enjoy it a lot, I’m on top of everything and I’m doing my best with what I have.

“But this pressure is not on me, this pressure is on the people responsible for it.”

Zach Veach splits with Andretti Autosport for rest of IndyCar season

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Zach Veach will be leaving his Andretti Autosport ride with three races remaining in the season, choosing to explore options after the decision was made he wouldn’t return for 2021.

In a Wednesday release, Andretti Autosport said a replacement driver for the No. 26 Dallara-Honda would be named in the coming days. The NTT IndyCar Series will race Oct. 2-3 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course and then conclude the season Oct. 25 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Veach was ranked 11th in the points standings through 11 races of his third season with Andretti. Since a fourth in the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, he hadn’t finished higher than 14th.

“The decision was made that I will not be returning in 2021 with Andretti Autosport in the No. 26 Gainbridge car,” Veach said in the Andretti release. “This, along with knowing that limited testing exists for teams due to COVID, have led me to the decision to step out of the car for the remainder of the 2020 IndyCar season. I am doing this to allow the team to have time with other drivers as they prepare for 2021, and so that I can also explore my own 2021 options.

“This is the hardest decision I have ever made, but to me, racing is about family, and it is my belief that you take care of your family. Andretti Autosport is my family and I feel this is what is best to help us all reach the next step. I will forever be grateful to Michael and the team for all of their support over the years. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for a relationship that started many years ago with Road to Indy. I will also be forever grateful to Dan Towriss for his friendship and for the opportunity he and Gainbridge have given me.

“My love for this sport and the people involved is unmeasurable, and I look forward to continuing to be amongst the racing world and fans in 2021.”

Said team owner Michael Andretti: “We first welcomed Zach to the Andretti team back in his USF2000 days and have enjoyed watching him grow and evolve as a racer, and a person. His decision to allow us to use the last few races to explore our 2021 options shows the measure of his character.

“Zach has always placed team and family first, and we’re very happy to have had him as part of ours for so many years. We wish him the best in whatever 2021 may bring and will always consider him a friend.”

Andretti fields five full-time cars for Veach, Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Colton Herta.

It also has fielded James Hinchcliffe in three races this season.