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Dani Pedrosa signs new two-year Honda MotoGP deal

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Dani Pedrosa will remain with Honda until the end of the 2018 MotoGP season after signing a new two-year contract with the Japanese manufacturer last week.

Pedrosa had been linked with a possible move to Yamaha following Jorge Lorenzo’s decision to switch to Ducati at the end of the season, with Spanish telecommunications giant Movistar supposedly pushing for a deal.

However, Pedrosa will extend his stint with Honda to 13 seasons, paving the way for current Suzuki racer Maverick Vinales to take Lorenzo’s ride for 2017.

“I’m very happy to be able to announce my renewal with the Repsol Honda Team,” Pedrosa said.

“I’m very grateful to Honda for the trust they’ve shown in renewing with me for an additional two years. I think it’s best for me to continue with the company I was with at my very first race.

“I’m happy that the negotiations have been quick, and now I can just focus on racing. I want to give 100% this weekend at the Italian GP.”

Michael Schumacher’s son to make F1 practice debut at Nurburgring

F1 Mick Schumacher
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MARANELLO, Italy — Mick Schumacher, son of the legednary seven-time champion, will have an official Formula One drive during an F1 race weekend for the first time next week at the Nurburgring, Alfa Romeo and Ferrari said Tuesday.

Schumacher gets the practice drive in an Alfa Romeo on Oct. 9 on his home track in Germany as a member of Ferrari’s young driver program, taking over Antonio Giovinazzi’s car for the first session of the weekend.

“I am overjoyed to get this chance in free practice,” Schumacher said in a statement. “I’m going to prepare myself well, so that I can do the best possible job for the team and gain some valuable data for the weekend.”

The 21-year-old Schumacher leads the Formula 2 standings after winning races in Monza and Sochi. He won the European Formula 3 championship in 2018 and tested a Ferrari F1 car in Bahrain in April 2019. He also has done demonstration runs in his father’s old cars, most recently this month ahead of the Tuscan Grand Prix in a championship-winning 2004 Ferrari.

Michael Schumacher holds the F1 record with 91 victories, which Lewis Hamilton is on the verge of tying.

Ferrari said two other drivers in its academy program will also get practice drives in Formula One.

Callum Ilott, a British driver who is second to Mick Schumacher in F2, will drive an F1 Haas at the Nurburgring on the same day as Schumacher. Russian driver Robert Shwartzman will drive in practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Dec. 11, though Ferrari hasn’t said for which team.

The German round was added to the F1 schedule after the coronavirus pandemic disrupted the season and will be officially known as the Eifel Grand Prix after a nearby mountain range. The Nurburgring last hosted F1 in 2013.