FIA Race Director Charlie Whiting will make a rare and unusual appearance in Thursday’s FIA Press Conference at the Brazilian Grand Prix alongside all three drivers who at one point had finished third in the Mexican Grand Prix.
Whiting will join Red Bull’s pair of Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in what could be a very enlightening press conference.
Per the FIA, Whiting will attend but be limited on scope of discussion. “FIA Race Director Charlie Whiting will attend the latter part of the Thursday Drivers’ Press Conference, alongside the nominated drivers, to talk about the 2016 FIA Formula One Mexican Grand Prix. On this occasion he will be present to address this topic ONLY, in order to avoid questions are not in line with the facts in discussion,” the statement read.
To recap the controversial ending at Mexico, Verstappen initially was third, then got docked five seconds after his off-course excursion to promote Vettel to third, before Vettel was docked 10 seconds hours later for his driving standards, which promoted Ricciardo to the podium.
Analysis was written, Vettel was let off the hook by the FIA for his explosive radio outburst but one that showed a rare human side, and further condemnation came in a biting column from Stefan Johansson.
The other three drivers called are Mercedes AMG Petronas teammates Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg – Rosberg having the opportunity to win the World Championship this weekend – and Williams’ Felipe Massa ahead of his final Brazilian Grand Prix.
Considering in Japan only three Grands Prix ago, Hamilton’s Snapchat antics was the story, it’s funny that now Hamilton will be least under the microscope of those present on Thursday.
Whiting’s presence figures to be an intriguing one.
The NTT IndyCar Series will be sharing Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the NASCAR Cup Series in a race weekend doubleheader for the second consecutive season, but both series will be on the road course in August 2021.
IMS announced Wednesday that IndyCar will hold an Aug. 14, 2021 race on its 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. It’ll be a day before NASCAR’s premier series runs the same layout for the first time after the Brickyard 400 was contested on the 2.5-mile oval for the first time in 27 years.
This season’s rescheduling of the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix to July 4, 2019 (a day before the Brickyard 400) led to the first NASCAR-IndyCar doubleheader weekend. The Xfinity Series also raced on the IMS road course for the first time July 4 after the IndyCar race ended.
INDYCAR AT IMS THIS WEEKEND: Harvest GP schedule, entry lists
IndyCar will be holding its second race weekend this year at the IMS road course Friday and Saturday with the Harvest GP.
“Our first NASCAR-INDYCAR weekend was a big success last July, with positive feedback from
our loyal fans who watched the races on NBC and from the drivers, teams and participants
involved,” IMS president Douglas Boles said in a statement. “The Xfinity Series’ debut on the IMS road course provided exactly the kind of thrilling action from the green to checkered flags that we anticipated, so we know the teams and drivers of the Cup Series will put on a great show as they turn left and right for the first time at IMS.
“We can’t wait to welcome back fans to see NASCAR and INDYCAR together during this
exciting weekend as we add another memorable chapter in the long, storied history of the
Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”
It also will mark the first NASCAR Cup-IndyCar doubleheader with a crowd as fans weren’t permitted at IMS in July because of the novel coronvavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Over the course of Wednesday, NASCAR is releasing its 36-race slate for next season. IndyCar has yet to release its full 2021 schedule.