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Ferrucci set to continue as Haas development driver in 2017

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American youngster Santino Ferrucci is set to continue as Haas’ Formula 1 development driver through the 2017 season, according to team chief Guenther Steiner.

Ferrucci, 18, joined up with Haas for the 2016 season, as well as racing in the GP3 Series where he finished the season 12th in the standings with one podium to his name.

The native of Woodbury, CT, is poised to continue with Haas for next season, as confirmed by team principal Steiner when speaking to Autosport.

“He will stay as the development driver,” Steiner said.

“It’s a long-term project, we don’t exactly what we’re going to do next year with him because as you know testing is still up in the air.

“We know the tests we are doing but we still need to decide when we use the rookie days and who we put in it.

“We also need to decide if we are going to do some FP1s with him or not. Over the winter, we’re going to sit down with him and see what we’re doing.”

Haas also worked with Ferrari junior Charles Leclerc through its debut F1 season, with the Monegasque driver taking part in a number of practice sessions for the team.

Leclerc will move up to GP2 with Prema Racing next year, having won the GP3 title in 2016, and could be set to continue with Haas given Ferrari’s technical partnership with the American team.

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.