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Vettel issues public apology, admits to overreaction in Hamilton clash

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Sebastian Vettel has issued a public apology for his clash with Formula 1 title rival Lewis Hamilton in Azerbaijan, admitting that he “overreacted” after thinking he was being brake tested.

Vettel gave Hamilton a side-swipe with his Ferrari behind the safety car in response to the alleged brake test, resulting in a penalty for dangerous driving and a further investigation from the FIA.

The FIA announced on Monday that the matter had been resolved, with Vettel avoiding further punishment after admitting full responsibility for the clash and agreeing to take part in educational activities with junior series.

Vettel issued a statement soon after the ruling from the FIA in which he gave his side of the story before admitting that he overreacted to Hamilton’s move behind the safety car.

“Concerning the incidents of Baku I’d like to explain myself: during the re-start lap, I got surprised by Lewis and ran into the back of his car,” Vettel said.

“With hindsight, I don’t believe he had any bad intentions. In the heat of the action I then overreacted, and therefore I want to apologize to Lewis directly, as well as to all the people who were watching the race. I realize that I was not setting a good example.

“I had no intention at anytime to put Lewis in danger, but I understand that I caused a dangerous situation.

“Therefore, I would like to apologize to the FIA. I accept and respect the decisions that were taken at today’s meeting in Paris, as well as the penalty imposed by the Stewards in Baku.

“I love this sport and I am determined to represent it in a way that can be an example for future generations.”

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.