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‘F1 Live’ London event to feature car demo, education, music

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Ahead of this week’s British Grand Prix, Formula 1 is taking to the heart of London first for a new “F1 Live” event that features a mix of drivers, education and live music.

New F1 owners Liberty Media have sought greater fan engagement as part of its longer term strategy and such an event like this, to be held in Trafalgar Square with a car parade in Whitehall, seems to match those goals.

It will be the first time all 10 teams will have a car in action at a demo event outside a race weekend, which at Silverstone is a rare four-day affair anyway with some F2 and GP3 action shifted to Thursday.

Alas, the F1 Schools and Innovation Showcase will run from noon to 4 p.m. before the F1 Live London Show and Parade from 5:30 to 9 p.m. F1 will stream the event both on its website and its YouTube page.

The Schools and Innovation Showcase is designed to help children, young adults, teachers and parents learn about F1 careers and opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM). These type of events are common in the U.S. as a couple manufacturers in sports cars and occasionally drivers in IndyCar have helped to teach the next generation about these skills, but not so much in F1.

That’s the precursor before the F1 Live London Show and Parade, with both show cars and live action to take place along with live music.

“F1 Live London is the most striking example yet of Formula 1’s evolution this year,” Sean Bratches, Managing Director, Commercial Operations at F1 said in a release. “We feel there is no better way to celebrate the exciting season we have had so far than to have this landmark event in London on the eve of the British Grand Prix. This is all about giving our fans the opportunity to get closer to the teams, cars and drivers they love.”

London Mayor Sadiq Khan added, “F1 Live London is a brilliant opportunity to show young people in our city that learning about science and engineering can provide them with fantastic careers, and can be great fun. It will also bring fans of all ages and backgrounds together to celebrate a sport they are passionate about and in which Britain is a world leader.”

The FIA Formula E Championship, which held races in London’s Battersea Park as well as a street demo itself earlier in its history, couldn’t resist the opportunity to note it’s been on London’s streets before.

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.