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F1Weekly podcast # 708


Norris started his racing career at the age of seven where he claimed pole position at his first national event and is still to this date the youngest driver to achieve pole position at a national meeting. In 2013, Norris won in the World Karting Championships held in Bahrain, the WSK Euro Series and the CIK FIA European and CIK FIA Supercup titles. The following year, Norris won the CIK-FIA KF World Championship thereby making him the youngest karting world championship winner.

In 2014, Norris made his debut in Ginetta Junior Championship where he finished third overall, winning the Rookie Cup in his first year racing cars. For 2015, Norris signed with Carlin Motorsport to drive in the newly established MSA Formula series. Norris would win the series with eight wins, ten pole positions and 14 podiums. He also made occasional appearances in the ADAC Formula 4 Championship and the Italian Formula 4 Championship with Mücke Motorsport where he enjoyed even more successes, picking up six podiums from eight starts in the former and a single podium in the latter.

For 2016, it was announced that Norris would be driving for M2 Competition in the Toyota Racing Series in New Zealand. Norris achieved six wins throughout the season, including the New Zealand Grand Prix and won the championship on his first attempt. Norris will take part in Formula Renault 2.0 Eurocup and Formula Renault 2.0 NEC series driving for Josef Kaufmann Racing as well as embark on a campaign in the BRDC British Formula 3 Championship with Carlin.

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Alpine completes victory hat-trick

Following back-to-back triumphs in the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps and Le Mans 24 Hours, Nicolas Lapierre, Stéphane Richelmi and Gustavo Menezes have tallied their third consecutive FIA World Endurance Championship LMP2 class victory at the Nürburgring. Midway through the 2016 campaign, this latest success has further increased the N°36 Signatech-Alpine crew’s advantage at the top of the FIA Endurance Trophy for LMP2 Drivers. The N°35 Baxi DC Racing Alpine piloted by Nelson Panciatici, Ho-Pin Tung and David Cheng similarly scored points in Germany in seventh position.

Even before they climbed onto the top step of the podium at the Nürburgring, Nicolas Lapierre, Stéphane Richelmi and Gustavo Menezes’ weekend had already been a rollercoaster ride of emotions! At the start of the opening free practice session on Friday morning, a mistake by Nicolas gave Signatech-Alpine’s crew of mechanics an early challenge to repair the car in time to allow its three drivers to return to the track and begin their preparations that afternoon.

On Saturday morning, both Alpine A460s were on the pace, with the N°35 Baxi DC Racing Alpine entry and the N°36 Signatech-Alpine lapping respectively third and fourth-quickest during the final free practice session. Richelmi and Menezes proceeded to qualify the N°36 second on the grid amongst the LMP2 class protagonists, with Panciatici and Cheng posting the tenth-best time in the sister car.

Today’s 6 Hours of Nürburgring got underway at 13:00 under sunny skies. Richelmi maintained second position in the early stages, as Panciatici gained a spot to run ninth. It was not long before the N°35 crew adapted its strategy, with Cheng taking over behind the wheel. Once the field began to space out, Nelson returned to the cockpit while Menezes similarly replaced Richelmi in the N°36.

After battling against two rivals for the LMP2 class lead, Gustavo seized the advantage just before mid-distance and notwithstanding repeated ‘Full Course Yellow’ interventions, Signatech-Alpine stuck firmly to its plan and the American ended his stint still in front. Lapierre was the last of the trio to jump into the N°36, with just over two-and-a-half hours remaining to the chequered flag. Remaining mindful of the gap to Bruno Senna behind, he managed the margin to perfection to bring the car home for its third consecutive triumph. Chinese ace Tung was behind the wheel of the N°35 for the final two hours and produced a solid performance to climb to seventh place.

The result has enabled the N°36 Signatech-Alpine crew to extend its championship lead to 38 points over its closest pursuer. The N°35 Baxi DC Racing Alpine trio sit tenth.




DANIEL RICCIARDO, Finish Position: 3rd, Start Position: 3rd
“I’m really pleased with a podium today, I don’t think we could have got a win. We tried at the start; we had a good run off the line and at the apex the Mercs were in my blind spot, so I thought I was in the lead, but on the exit I was done by Lewis (Hamilton) and then Nico (Rosberg) got me round the outside of Turn Two. I think even if we had got the lead, their pace was good so they could have even over-cut us if they stayed out an extra lap. Third was the best we could do and Seb (Vettel) got really close in the last three laps; my tyres were getting towards the end, so coming over the line in third was good. Three podiums in a row here is great, it’s a good place for me. I feel really good. Fridays and Saturdays have been really good for us from the start of the season but the last few Sundays, for whatever reason, I haven’t been that satisfied with, so it was important to put it together from Friday to Sunday this weekend and I believe I did that. And now we’ve got another in seven days, so that’s another chance to be happy again!”



Russian dominates in Budapest
Sergey Sirotkin has put his title challenge back on track with a crushing win in this morning’s Sprint Race at the Hungaroring to add to yesterday’s podium, capitalising on his rival’s mistakes before leaving everyone behind to claim victory ahead of Jordan King and Norman Nato.

The groundwork for the win was set up at the start: poleman King made a good escape when the lights went out but Nato was slow away from second and was soon fighting with Nobuharu Matsushita, but Sirotkin was faster than them both to slide inside the squabble and into P2 at Turn one, with his teammate coming together with Antonio Giovinazzi behind him and Raffaele Marciello running wide to avoid the collision.

Arthur Pic spun on his own at Turn two and triggered mayhem: Gustav Malja ran over Alex Lynn’s rear wheel, with the Swede continuing but the Briton out on the spot, while Matsushita and Luca Ghiotto found the outside barriers for early retirement, spurring a safety car period to remove the four cars. The race was to go live on lap 4, but at the front King ran wide at Turn 13 and Sirotkin was all over him: the pair ran side by side all the way to Turn 4 when the Russian broke through into the lead, and within seconds he was gone.

Sirotkin set a string of fastest laps to set up a lead that was never to be challenged, putting on a driving masterclass to win by almost five seconds from King, who thereafter had a lonely race for a solid second place. Teammate Nato held on for a podium despite constant pressure from Artem Markelov, who overtook former teammate Mitch Evans for 4th just 8 laps in but was unable to repeat the move on the Frenchman, while Oliver Rowland stared at the New Zealander’s exhaust pipe for much of the race but just couldn’t get by. Pierre Gasly moved up to P7 and claimed points for the fastest lap, while Marciello grabbed the last point of the race in 8th place.

Gasly leaves Budapest in the lead of the drivers’ standings ahead of teammate Giovinazzi on 107 points to 96, with Marciello third on 85 points ahead of Rowland on 83, Nato on 81, King on 80, Evans on 77 and Sirotkin joining his rivals on 70 points, while in the teams’ fight PREMA Racing extend their lead over Racing Engineering by 203 points to 161, ahead of RUSSIAN TIME on 150 and ART Grand Prix on 126 points as the grid looks toward the next round of the championship in Hockenheim next week.


NICO ROSBERG  grabs pole position for Sunday’s Hungarian Grand Prix ahead of Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton in a prolonged qualifying session punctuated by rainstorms and red flags.

The championship-leading 31-year-old German produced a fastest lap of one minute and 19.965 seconds at the end of a session stretched to nearly two hours by heavy rain and crashes in the hazardous conditions on the twisting Hungaroring circuit on Saturday.

Defending three-time champion Hamilton, who is just one point behind Rosberg after 10 of this year’s 21 races, was 0.143 seconds behind his rival as the pair secured their team’s sixth front-row lockout of the season.

“It was a really challenging qualifying with the changing conditions all the time,” said Rosberg.

Hamilton looked to be on course to take pole when on an improved best lap he came across Spaniard Fernando Alonso’s McLaren spinning off the track in front of him.

The Briton had to take evasive action, which cost him time, before Rosberg came round and was able to continue without easing off.

“It was unfortunate with Fernando, but these things happen,” said Hamilton, who has been gnawing away at Rosberg’s lead in the standings and is chasing a third win in succession.

“I did the best I could do and it’s a long race tomorrow so I’ll give it everything I’ve got.”

“I’ve been feeling really good out there the whole weekend in all conditions. I’m looking forward to the race and the great opportunity tomorrow.”



ART Grand Prix’s Nyck de Vries fastest in Hungarian qualifying
McLaren protégé and ART Grand Prix’s Nyck de Vries produced the goods in qualifying today by posting the quickest lap in the dying seconds to claim his first GP3 pole. The Dutchman clocked a laptime of 1:32.979 which was almost half a second faster than Koiranen GP’s Matthew Parry who had been sat pretty at the top of the timesheet. Trident and Ferrari Driver Academy’s Antonio Fuoco was third after leading the qualifying battle early on.
Very hot temperatures set the scene for the thirty minute qualifying session with Campos Racing’s Alex Palou setting the initial pace. Fuoco was then busy lighting timing screens in purple in sector two and three to go P1 ahead of Matevos Isaakyan, Artur Janosz, Jake Dennis and Giuliano Alesi.
ART Grand Prix’s Alexander Albon was first to dip into the 1m33’s and held a one tenth advantage over Fuoco. The session was briefly red flagged after Steijn Schothorst stopped at Turn 7. When the session resumed, there were just under seven minutes left on the clock remaining and at this point Series leader Charles Leclerc was down in P11.
Ralph Boschung shot to second, a mere 0.026s off Albon before Fuoco found some extra pace to return to the head of the timings. Leclerc also was on the move and was up to P3. But it was Parry who looked racy and he rose to provisional pole with a tenth in hand.
Fuoco tried to his best to respond but he was 0.014s shy of the Brit’s best effort. Dennis was also on the attack as he went third quickest but all eyes were on De Vries as the ART Grand Prix rookie impressively flew to the top of the timesheet by almost half a second.
At the chequered flag, De Vries was overjoyed to pocket his maiden GP3 pole ahead of Parry in second who had his best qualifying result of the season. Fuoco, Dennis, Nirei Fukuzumi, Leclerc, Jack Aitken, Albon, Arjun Maini and Boschung completed the top ten.
Race 1 takes place today at 17.20 (GMT+2).