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King gets second Manor F1 practice outing in Abu Dhabi

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Manor Racing has confirmed that Jordan King will take part in a Formula 1 practice session for the second time when he gets behind the wheel of the MRT05 car for FP1 in Abu Dhabi next weekend.

King, 22, joined Manor in a development role in 2015 before getting his first run-out on a grand prix weekend in Austin, Texas last month.

The GP2 driver has now been slated to take part in opening practice at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi next Friday, stepping in for Esteban Ocon.

“We’re also pleased to welcome Jordan back to the cockpit for his second planned FP1 session,” Manor racing director Dave Ryan confirmed.

“He’ll be taking over Esteban’s car on Friday morning and we have a busy programme of testing items lined up for him again.”

Manor heads into the final race of the season aiming to claw back 10th place in the constructors’ championship from Sauber, having dropped to the foot of the table last time out in Brazil.

“Clearly we were all very disappointed with the outcome on Sunday evening in Brazil,” Ryan said.

“But, you know what? When you look at it in the cold light of day, I’m really proud of the guys.

“I thought the team did a fantastic job in the race; we were genuinely running with both cars in the top 10 early on, we had everything covered on the pit wall during all the chaos and the guys did a textbook job of dealing with the red flags.

“It’s just that, come the final restart, we weren’t quite quick enough and probably needed another two or three laps to pull it off. That’s racing and we’ll have a good go at reversing things in Abu Dhabi.”

Valtteri Bottas wins chaotic season-opening F1 Austrian Grand Prix

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SPIELBERG, Austria — Valtteri Bottas won a chaotic season-opening F1 Austrian Grand Prix while six-time series champion Lewis Hamilton finished fourth after getting a late time penalty Sunday.

The Formula One race was interrupted three times by a safety car, and nine of 20 drivers abandoned, including both Red Bulls of Max Verstappen and Alexander Albon – who tried to overtake Hamilton on the outside with 10 laps left, touched wheels and flew off track.

Hamilton was given a 5-second time penalty for causing the collision, having earlier been hit with a three-place grid penalty after an incident in Saturday’s qualifying was reviewed by stewards.

SHOW OF SUPPORT: Drivers take knee before race

Bottas led all 71 laps in the eighth victory of his career. It was the second consecutive victory in the season opener for the Finn, though he won four months earlier in 2019 after this season’s start was delayed by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Lando Norris of McLaren F1 celebrates after his first podium finish (Mark Thompson/Getty Images).

Bottas started from pole position and Hamilton from fifth, but it looked like a straight fight between the two Mercedes drivers as has been the case so often in recent years.

But late drama in Spielberg ensured otherwise and Hamilton’s time penalty meant Charles Leclerc took second place for Ferrari, and Lando Norris sent McLaren’s garage into raptures – and threw all social distancing rules out of the window amid the euphoria – with third place.

It was the 20-year-old British driver’s first career podium, and his superb final lap was the fastest of a dramatic season opener.

Norris became the youngest British driver to secure a podium finish and the third-youngest ever in Formula One.

Valtteri Bottas leads Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton during the Formula One Grand Prix of Austria (Mark Thompson/Getty Images).