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Aston Martin Racing changes GTE Pro line-up for rest of WEC season

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Aston Martin Racing has adjusted its driver line-up in the GTE Pro class of the FIA World Endurance Championship for the remainder of the 2016 season.

AMR entered two V8 Vantage GTEs with three drivers in each car at the beginning of the season, racing with six drivers at Silverstone, Spa and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

However, the British marque will now cut back to having two drivers in each of its cars for the remainder of the WEC season.

“Each entry will benefit from increased track time per driver and fewer compromises in their driving positions,” a statement from Aston Martin Racing read.

Darren Turner will switch from the No. 95 entry to the No. 97, joining Richie Stanaway. Nicki Thiim and Marco Sorensen will continue to race in the No. 95 car.

Fernando Rees and Johnny Adam partnered Stanaway for the opening three races of the year, but will remain part of the Aston Martin Racing setup despite being dropped from the No. 97 car.

“With the second half of the season due to begin, we have had to consider what is best for the team,” team principal Paul Howarth said.

“With a focused driver lineup, this should help give us the best possible chance of success this year. I hope that Nicki, Marco, Darren and Richie will continue to push hard and keep us at the top of the GT manufacturers table.

“I’d like to thank Fernando and Jonny for their efforts this year, particularly on their sterling job at Le Mans.

“They have each put in fantastic performances and we look forward to continuing to work with them in our wider Aston Martin Racing activities.”

The next FIA WEC round takes place at the Nurburgring in Germany on July 24.

Dutch Grand Prix becomes fourth Formula 1 race canceled this season

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ZANDVOORT, Netherlands — The Dutch Grand Prix became the fourth Formula One race canceled this season because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, after organizers decided Thursday they didn’t want to play host to an event without spectators.

It was to be the first Dutch GP since 1985, but F1 wants to start the season with no spectators at races.

“We would like to celebrate this moment, the return of Formula 1 in Zandvoort, together with our racing fans in the Netherlands,” race director Jan Lammers said in a statement. “We ask everyone to be patient. I had to look forward to it for 35 years, so I can wait another year.”

The race in Zandvoort was set for May 3 and initially postponed. Fans who bought tickets can use them next year.

The coastal circuit has been redesigned, with some corners banked to facilitate faster racing.

The other races canceled this year were the season-opening Australian GP on March 15; the Monaco GP on May 24; and the French GP on June 28.

Another six have been postponed.

F1 organizers still hope to reschedule those and hold 15 to 18 races this season, starting in July with back-to-back races at the Austrian GP.