Sebastian Vettel Racing Point
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Four-time F1 champ Sebastian Vettel headed to Racing Point next season

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LONDON — Four-time Formula One champion Sebastian Vettel will drive for Racing Point starting next season.

The team, which will be renamed Aston Martin, announced the move Thursday, a day after driver Sergio Perez said he was on his way out. The team said Vettel has signed for the 2021 season “and beyond” but did not reveal the length of the contract.

“The signing of Sebastian is a clear statement of the team’s ambition to establish itself as one of the most competitive names in the sport,” the team said in a statement. “As a four-time world champion, Sebastian brings a fresh mindset to the team.”

One of the most successful drivers in F1, Vettel is leaving Ferrari at the end of this season after he was not offered a new contract. He will be replaced by McLaren driver Carlos Sainz at Ferrari next year.

Vettel has won 53 grand prix races, a tally only surpassed by Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton. He won four consecutive titles with Red Bull from 2010-13 and joined Ferrari in 2015 with the aim to win another.

But he never had a car really capable of challenging Mercedes during his stint with the Scuderia, where he lost his No. 1 status as teammate Charles Leclerc came to prominence.

“It’s a new adventure for me with a truly legendary car company,” Vettel said. “I have been impressed with the results the team has achieved this year, and I believe the future looks even brighter. I still have so much love for Formula 1 and my only motivation is to race at the front of the grid.”

Currently fourth in the constructors’ standings, Racing Point was handed a 400,000 euro ($470,000) fine and docked 15 points last month for copying a Mercedes design for its brake ducts. The team, however, was allowed to continue to use the offending components this season.

Racing Point’s other driver is Lance Stroll, the son of co-owner Lawrence Stroll.

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.