Verizon, IndyCar, IMS featured in “The Runner” episode

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You’re probably wondering what the heck Ben Affleck and Matt Damon have to do with IndyCar. In short, very little.

But for a brief episode of a new socially-driven, competitive reality series called “The Runner,” the show in which Affleck and Damon are executive producers, these two worlds collide.

Here’s a release explaining how and why it happened:

As the title sponsor of the Verizon IndyCar Series, Verizon is always looking for ways to bring the excitement and thrills of INDYCAR across all of its platforms. The latest example of this is Verizon’s inclusion of INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in “The Runner,” the new socially-driven, competitive reality series from executive producers Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, airing on go90 and AOL.com.

Hosted by Matthew Patrick (aka “MatPat”), creator of YouTube series Game Theory, and featuring VICE News journalist, producer and media commentator Kaj Larsen as the on-camera expert, The Runner challenges one person to make it across America while the entire country hunts him or her down for a chance to cash in on over one million dollars in prize money.

In the latest episode, The Runner visited Indianapolis Motor Speedway where one contestant had to navigate the garages to unlock a ride in a Verizon IndyCar Series two-seater.

You can check out the full episode here: https://goo.gl/l8xIhn

NEOM McLaren Formula E announces Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast for 2023 season

McLaren Formula E Hughes
McLaren Racing
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Doubling down on their commitment to electric auto sports, McLaren Racing announced Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast to compete in the 2023 Formula E Series (FE), which completes their driver lineup.

The NEOM McLaren FE team was formed by the acquisition of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team that won the 2021 and 2022 championships with Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries behind the wheel.

“Today’s announcement feels like a long time coming,” said Ian James, managing director of NEOM McLaren Electric Racing in a release. “Since May this year, when we first announced McLaren Racing’s entry into Formula E, we have been working tirelessly to get in place the best possible team and structure for sustainable success.

“On the one hand, we have been working on the retention of the amazing talent that already was in place before going into the transitional phase. I’m proud to say I think we’ve done a great job on that front.

“On the other hand, we have been focusing on putting in place new processes and new talent – and the latter includes the drivers.”

The driver lineup clasps the two hands together.

Hughes brings 10 years racing experience in single seater cars, including a role with the acquired Mercedes-EQ team as a reserve and development driver for the past two seasons. He is the 2013 BRDC Formula 4 champion and has multiple wins in Formula 2, including two in 2020.

Announced in August, Rast joins the team after earning two podium finishes and six top-fives in 22 career Formula E starts for Audi Sport ABT before returning to the DTM Series last year. Rast’s best finish in Formula E came in the Puebla E Prix when he finished second to teammate Lucas di Grassi by less than a half second.

McLaren’s commitment to Formula E comes one year after they entered the Extreme E rally series in 2022 with Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour in the driver lineup. After a modest start to the season, the McLaren XE drivers crossed the finish line first in Round 4 in Chile, but were assessed a time penalty that dropped them to fifth. Last week in the season finale in Uruguay, they held onto a hard-earned second place finish.