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Felix Rosenqvist, Pierre Gasly enjoy first Super Formula tests in Japan

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Red Bull junior Pierre Gasly and Formula E’s Felix Rosenqvist enjoyed their first official running in Japan’s Super Formula series during a fan thanks day at Suzuka on Sunday.

Gasly won last year’s GP2 Series title with Prema Racing, but missed out on a seat in Formula 1 with Toro Rosso after Red Bull elected to retain Carlos Sainz Jr. and Daniil Kvyat for 2017.

Unable to return to GP2 as champion, Gasly was moved into Super Formula by Red Bull, claiming a seat with the Honda-backed Team Mugen.

The Frenchman made his first appearance during Sunday’s test, completing 17 laps and finishing 15th overall, 1.4 seconds off the pace set by P1 finisher and Porsche LMP1 driver Andre Lotterer.

Rosenqvist was only confirmed in a seat with Sunoco Team LeMans four days ago, but immediately set to work by finishing one place ahead of Gasly and getting 13 laps under his belt.

“This is a serious beast – this car is absolutely awesome,” Rosenqvist said.

“Turn 1 is just insane; we pull 4.3 G and it’s glued to the track all the way through. The torque is more extreme than I expected and the acceleration is impressive.

“First impressions are very positive, but it will take time to get used to everything and we’ll try and get as much of that as we can out of the way tomorrow.”

During his visit to Suzuka, Gasly also paid tribute to Jules Bianchi, who died in 2015 from head injuries sustained from an accident at the circuit the year before.

Gasly and Rosenqvist will take part in a two-day test at Suzuka on Monday and Tuesday, with the new season beginning at the circuit on April 23.

IndyCar teams with NASCAR on IMS road course doubleheader in 2021

IndyCar NASCAR doubleheader 2021
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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.