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F1: Vettel wins in Belgium to close points gap to Hamilton

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Sebastian Vettel used a slipstream off of Lewis Hamilton to take lead on Lap 1 of Sunday’s Belgian Grand Prix, and he commanded the race from there to take his fifth victory of the 2018 Formula 1 season.

Vettel’s move came just before a Safety Car was deployed for a scary crash involving Nico Hulkenberg, Fernando Alonso, and Charles Leclerc entering La Source – Hulkenberg locked up the brakes and ran into the back of Alonso, which propelled him over Leclerc.

In fact, Vettel and Hamilton nearly went three and four-wide with the Racing Point Force India duo of Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez, but they fell back in line on corner entry, leaving Vettel in the lead over Hamilton.

Vettel took off away from the field when racing resumed and he never looked back, dominating the rest of the way. Hamilton came home in second, while Max Verstappen battled his way up to third at race’s end.

Valtteri Bottas worked his way up to fourth after starting last, passing Perez in the final laps to get the spot.

Perez and Ocon brought the new-look Force India team home in fifth and sixth, followed by the Haas duo of Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen.

Pierre Gasly and Marcus Ericsson rounded out the points scorers. Of note: Daniel Ricciardo and Kimi Raikkonen also suffered damage in the opening lap crash – Ricciardo suffered a broken rear wing while Raikkonen had a right-rear tire puncture.

Ricciardo was able to continue, but dropped out near the end of the race after being unable to make up ground. Raikkonen, too, retired, although much earlier due to damage to the car’s floor.

Results are below. The 2018 Formula 1 season continues next weekend with the Italian Grand Prix.

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IndyCar at IMS Friday: How to watch, start times, live streaming info

IndyCar Indianapolis start times
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With three races remaining in the NTT IndyCar Series season, Scott Dixon has a commanding lead and history on his side entering Friday’s opener of the Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The five-time series champion leads defending champ Josef Newgarden by 72 points.

Since 2014, the points leader with three races left has won the championship in five of the past six years, including Dixon in ’18.

The Chip Ganassi Racing driver has led the championship standings following every round after opening 2020 with three consecutive victories. Dixon also led the points by 78 points with three races remaining when he won the title in 2008.

Dixon, Newgarden, Pato O’Ward, Colton Herta, Will Power, Graham Rahal and Takuma Sato are championship eligible.

Anyone outside 108 points of the lead after Indy will be eliminated heading into the Oct. 25 season finale at St. Petersburg, Florida.

Here is the IndyCar Harvest GP at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course schedule for Friday (all times are ET), including details and start times:


Indianapolis Motor Speedway TV schedule for Friday

β€”IndyCar Harvest GP Race 1: 3:30 p.m., USA Network, NBC Sports Gold and streaming on the NBC Sports App and NBCSports.com); Leigh Diffey is the lead announcer for IndyCar on NBCSN this weekend with analysts Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy.


IndyCar Harvest GP, Race 1 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway start times, information

COMMAND TO START ENGINES: 3:53 p.m.

GREEN FLAG: 4 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is 85 laps (207.35 miles) around Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s a 2.439-mile, 14-turn road course in Indianapolis.

TIRE ALLOTMENT: Nine sets primary, five sets alternate (A 10th set of primary tires is available to any car fielding a rookie.) Teams must use one set of primary and one set of alternate tires in the race.

PUSH TO PASS: 200 seconds of total time with a maximum time of 20 seconds per activation.

FORECAST: According to Wunderground.com, it’s expected to be 57 degrees with a 0% chance of rain at the green flag.

QUALIFYING: 6:20 p.m. Thursday (NBC Sports Gold)

ENTRY LIST: Click here for the 25 drivers racing this weekend at Indianapolis