Hamilton elated to do home fans proud with Silverstone pole


Lewis Hamilton felt glad to have done the home fans at Silverstone proud by bouncing back from a track limits scare to score pole position for the British Grand Prix.

A three-time winner at Silverstone, Hamilton looked set to capture pole position after posting a new qualifying lap record for the current track layout at the start of Q3.

However, Hamilton’s time was deleted after he was found to have exceeded track limits at Copse, handing Rosberg the advantage.

“The penultimate lap was a very good lap. Unfortunately it was taken away,” Hamilton said.

“I touched the kerb and it just pulled me further. I didn’t feel like I was going to be be running wide, but the car bottomed kind of bounced just outside the line.”

Hamilton was left with one all-or-nothing lap to beat Rosberg, during which he duly went three-tenths of a second faster than the German to secure pole for the British Grand Prix.

“A lot of pressure for that final lap. I was sitting in the garage knowing i couldn’t let the guys down because on the first lap I had,” Hamilton said.

“The second lap wasn’t as good, but I was making sure I was cautious, making sure I got the lap in.

“I’m grateful that I did and really again thank you also to all my team who have done an amazing job to have the performance we have this weekend. It’s outstanding.”

Hamilton paid tribute to the fans that had turned out in droves to cheer him on in qualifying.

“I want to say how amazing and grateful I am for all the fans that are here this weekend,” Hamilton said.

“From Thursday until today, just the biggest crowd that I think I’ve ever seen. The energy and the wave that they send is just mesmirising, so a big thank you to everyone that is out there and for the positive energy.”

Following the clash between Hamilton and Rosberg on the last lap of the Austrian Grand Prix, Mercedes issued a new ‘rules of engagement’ with both drivers earlier this week to prevent a repeat.

With the Silver Arrows locking out the front row, Hamilton was asked whether Mercedes had cleared up any confusion regarding the inevitable battle at the start of the race.

“Yeah, I didn’t think there was anything that needed to be cleared up anyway,” Hamilton said.

“We’ll just get on with out job. There’s a lot way to go. I will try not to be in that position again.

“I can’t speak for him, but I’m sure Nico will do the same.”

The British Grand Prix is live on CNBC and the NBC Sports App from 7:30am ET on Sunday.

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.