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Renault to evaluate Ocon in Manor F1 race seat

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Renault Formula 1 chief Cyril Abiteboul says Esteban Ocon’s promotion into a race seat with Manor for the remainder of the season gives the French marque the perfect opportunity to evaluate him in a representative environment.

Ocon, 19, will make his F1 debut in Belgium at the end of the month after Rio Haryanto lost his seat with Manor due to a shortfall in funding.

Ocon is a member of Mercedes’ junior driver program, but has been on loan at Renault as a reserve driver for the 2016 season, taking part in four FP1 sessions so far this season.

Renault is known to be considering Ocon for a race seat in 2017, and Abiteboul is pleased to have secured a means by which to evaluate the Frenchman in race trim.

“Esteban joining Manor Racing for the last nine races of the season demonstrates the excellent relationship the two teams, Renault Sport Formula One Team and Mercedes-Benz, have maintained for several years,” Abiteboul said.

“It is an outstanding opportunity for Esteban to gather mileage and race experience in a young, stable and very professional team.

“Esteban will be up against a highly rated and quick teammate, which will enable us to evaluate him in a representative environment.

“I hope this experience will be of great benefit for him and for Renault in the near future.”

IndyCar entry lists for Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway

IndyCar entry lists Indianapolis
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There are 25 drivers on the NTT IndyCar Series entry lists at Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course with a few new yet familiar faces for the Oct. 2-3 race weekend.

Four-time champion Sebastien Bourdais will make his season debut in the No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet (shifting Dalton Kellett to the No. 41) with AJ Foyt Racing, which he is joining full time next season. James Hinchcliffe, who had run three races with Andretti Autosport, will return in place of Zach Veach in the No. 26 Dallara-Honda. Helio Castroneves will drive Arrow McLaren SP’s No. 7 Dallara-Chevy for Oliver Askew, who is out with concussion-like symptoms.

Sage Karam, who has two IndyCar starts this year at IMS (the road course on July 4 and the Indy 500 on Aug. 23), also will return to the series in Dreyer & Reinbold’s No. 24 Dallara-Chevrolet.

HARVEST GP ENTRY LISTS: Friday l Saturday

Friday and Saturday of the Harvest GP presented by GMR will mark the second and third races this season on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. While the July 4 race on the circuit was 80 laps, Friday’s distance is 85 laps, and Saturday will be a 75-lap event.

Championship leader Scott Dixon led 26 of 80 laps to win the July 4 race at the IMS road course. With three races remaining in the series, the five-time series champion enters with a 72-point lead on Josef Newgarden.

Click here to see who’s on the IndyCar entry lists in Race 1 and in Race 2 for the Harvest GP presented by GMR at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.


START TIMES AND TV INFO FOR INDYCAR AT INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE (all times ET):

Thursday

IndyCar NTT Series practice: 2:25-3:40 p.m., NBC Sports Gold

IndyCar qualifying, Race 1: 6:20 p.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

Friday

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 1: 3:30 p.m. (green flag, 5 p.m.), USA Network, NBC Sports Gold

Saturday

—IndyCar qualifying: 10:20 a.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 2: 2:30 p.m (green flag, 2:31 p.m.)., NBC, NBC Sports Gold