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Draft calendar of 2018 F1 schedule released

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At Monday’s World Motor Sport Council meeting, the first draft of the 2018 Formula 1 schedule was released, with a few notable tweaks.

The return of the French Grand Prix at Paul Ricard slots in on June 24, and a week after the 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans, June 16-17.

What that race being added does is create a tentative tripleheader with the French, Austrian and British Grands Prix all in successive weeks, a first for F1.

Germany is also back as it’s not on this year’s calendar, scheduled for July 22 at Hockenheim.

Elsewhere Baku moves from its current June slot into the end of April (April 29), while the Russian Grand Prix moves back to September (Sept. 30) after two years in April as the first in a back-to-back with the Japanese Grand Prix.

With Malaysia out, the calendar is at 21 races.

The tentative calendar is below (*subject to commercial rights holder confirmation):

25 March Melbourne Australia
8 April Shanghai* China
15 April Sakhir Bahrain
29 April Baku Azerbaijan
13 May Barcelona Spain
27 May Monaco Monaco
10 June Montreal Canada
24 June Le Castellet France
1 July Spielberg Austria
8 July Silverstone Great Britain
22 July Hockenheim Germany
29 July Budapest Hungary
26 August Spa-Francorchamps Belgium
2 September Monza Italy
16 September Singapore* Singapore
30 September Sochi Russia
7 October Suzuka Japan
21 October Austin USA
28 October Mexico City Mexico
11 November Sao Paulo Brazil
25 November Yas Marina Abu Dhabi

 

Reviewing Danica Patrick’s highs and lows at Indianapolis Motor Speedway

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So much of Danica Patrick’s fame can be traced to Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

It’s where she became a household name 13 years ago when she became the first woman to lead the Indianapolis 500 and emerged as a transcendent athlete.

It’s where everything started. This Sunday, it’s where everything will end, too.

In her last warmup before starting the final race of her career, Patrick had a bumpy final practice Friday on Carb Day. She was eighth fastest, but her Dallara-Chevrolet was in the garage most of the session because of an electrical problem in the engine. After returning during the final 10 minutes of the session, Patrick’s No. 13 seemed to be OK.

“At the end of the day, these are things you’re actually glad for, because if this had happened Sunday, we would have been done,” she said. “I’m glad to get the issues out of the way early on. Overall, today felt good. We made some changes when I went out the second time, and I’m feeling good about starting seventh on Sunday.”
Though she has had her share of success – along with a fourth in her debut, there was a third in 2009 and six top 10s in seven starts — Patrick has learned well how to handle frustration at the 2.5-mile track, too.

Fuel mileage might have kept her from winning her debut, a pit collision ruined 2008, and an unstable setup made 2010 a wild ride.

For a review of her up-and-down history at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and her legacy in racing, watch the video essay above that ran during Friday’s NASCAR America Motorsports Special on NBCSN.