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IndyCar iRacing results from Circuit of The Americas: Lando Norris wins

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VIRTUAL AUSTIN, Texas — Lando Norris made a smashing debut in the IndyCar iRacing Challenge Series, winning the fifth round Saturday at Circuit of The Americas.

The McLaren Formula One driver started from the pole on the road course and led a race-high 15 of 32 laps, holding off Arrow McLaren SP teammate Pato O’Ward by 1.44 seconds.

Felix Rosenqvist, who spun from the lead with four laps left, finished third, followed by Scott McLaughlin and Santino Ferrucci.

RESULTS: Click here to see where everyone finished at COTA

POSTRACE REACTION: What drivers said after the race at COTA

The rest of the top 10: Will Power, NTT Series rookie Rinus VeeKay (seventh in his IndyCar iRacing Challenge debut), Marcus Ericsson, Alex Palou and Josef Newgarden.

The series finale will be held May 2 (2:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN) at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, which will have a 33-car field.

Click here to see where everyone finished in the AutoNation IndyCar Challenge at COTA.

Zach Veach splits with Andretti Autosport for rest of IndyCar season

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Zach Veach will be leaving his Andretti Autosport ride with three races remaining in the season, choosing to explore options after the decision was made he wouldn’t return for 2021.

In a Wednesday release, Andretti Autosport said a replacement driver for the No. 26 Dallara-Honda would be named in the coming days. The NTT IndyCar Series will race Oct. 2-3 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course and then conclude the season Oct. 25 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.

Veach was ranked 11th in the points standings through 11 races of his third season with Andretti. Since a fourth in the June 6 season opener at Texas Motor Speedway, he hadn’t finished higher than 14th.

“The decision was made that I will not be returning in 2021 with Andretti Autosport in the No. 26 Gainbridge car,” Veach said in the Andretti release. “This, along with knowing that limited testing exists for teams due to COVID, have led me to the decision to step out of the car for the remainder of the 2020 IndyCar season. I am doing this to allow the team to have time with other drivers as they prepare for 2021, and so that I can also explore my own 2021 options.

“This is the hardest decision I have ever made, but to me, racing is about family, and it is my belief that you take care of your family. Andretti Autosport is my family and I feel this is what is best to help us all reach the next step. I will forever be grateful to Michael and the team for all of their support over the years. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for a relationship that started many years ago with Road to Indy. I will also be forever grateful to Dan Towriss for his friendship and for the opportunity he and Gainbridge have given me.

“My love for this sport and the people involved is unmeasurable, and I look forward to continuing to be amongst the racing world and fans in 2021.”

Said team owner Michael Andretti: “We first welcomed Zach to the Andretti team back in his USF2000 days and have enjoyed watching him grow and evolve as a racer, and a person. His decision to allow us to use the last few races to explore our 2021 options shows the measure of his character.

“Zach has always placed team and family first, and we’re very happy to have had him as part of ours for so many years. We wish him the best in whatever 2021 may bring and will always consider him a friend.”

Andretti fields five full-time cars for Veach, Alexander Rossi, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti and Colton Herta.

It also has fielded James Hinchcliffe in three races this season.