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Bottas continues to wait on news of Mercedes F1 plans

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Valtteri Bottas had no updates to provide regarding his Formula 1 future upon returning to the paddock after the summer break for this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix as Mercedes continues to consider its options for 2018.

Bottas joined Mercedes on a one-year deal in January following world champion Nico Rosberg’s shock retirement from the sport just five days after clinching his maiden title.

The Finn had surpassed most expectations so far this season, winning two races and sitting third in the drivers’ championship behind Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton.

Mercedes F1 chief Toto Wolff told NBCSN last month that Bottas had done enough to secure an extension, but that plans beyond 2018 meant the team could make no firm decision.

Bottas and Mercedes began to discuss 2018 plans ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix, but despite the three-week break before Spa, nothing firm has been decided on.

“For me, there’s no news yet,” Bottas said.

“We will tell you the news when there is some.”

Despite the continued waiting game, Bottas does not feel under any extra pressure to deliver on-track, having been made to sweat on his future for longer in the past.

“For me it doesn’t make a difference. Coming to this weekend, I’m not thinking about it,” Bottas said.

“Like I’ve said before, I’m used to these situations over the last few years, always the same thing that there’s no confirmation about next year.

“So now that we start the race weekend with a practice tomorrow, it’s not going to be in my mind, for sure.

“I’m just going to focus on the driving and the weekend, getting the most out of the weekend so no pressure from there.”

The Belgian Grand Prix is live across NBCSN, CNBC and the NBC Sports app this weekend.

Ka-boom! NHRA Funny Car driver Cruz Pedregon blows up brand new car body

Photo and video courtesy NHRA
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Former NHRA Funny Car champ Cruz Pedregon was a happy man coming into Friday’s qualifying for this weekend’s Dodge NHRA Mile-High Nationals in Morrison, Colorado (a suburb of Denver).

The reason Pedregon was feeling good was he had a brand new Toyota Camry body atop his Funny Car chassis. It was state of the art, it looked fast and it was prepared to run fast.

And everything really looked good as soon as Pedregon hit the gas in his qualifying run vs. Tim Wilkerson.

Well, for a few seconds, that is.

As the two drivers hurtled down the 1,000-foot drag strip, Pedregon’s brand new body was destroyed in a massive explosion.

Fortunately, Pedregon was uninjured.

Check out the big ka-boom: