Newgarden wins IndyCar crown; 16th for Penske

MONTEREY, Calif. — Josef Newgarden wrapped up his second IndyCar championship and burst into tears — an odd reaction for a steely nerved race car driver who rarely shows emotion. The outburst of emotion took him by surprise and shocked his fiancée, who had never before seen tears from Newgarden. “I never cry. Ever. Even my fiancée is a little disturbed,” Newgarden said. “And it was a good cry.” It was nearly two hours after his championship drive Sunday around Laguna Seca Raceway and Newgarden was still a bit emotional.…

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Singapore Grand Prix strategy guide

SINGAPORE — Under normal circumstances the Singapore Grand Prix would be a one-stop race, but there should be opportunities to use tyre strategy to make up positions. The performance of the soft tyre is good for about 10 laps, but will drop off rapidly once degradation takes hold. That means drivers willing to make a pit stop before their rivals could benefit from the extra performance of a fresh set of mediums, rather than ageing softs. This is known as the undercut and any driver with a gap behind him…

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Ricciardo excluded from qualifying for car breach

Daniel Ricciardo has been excluded from the result of qualifying at the Singapore Grand Prix after his car was found in contravention of the Formula One rulebook. Ricciardo qualified eighth on Saturday evening but after the session it was discovered the MGU-K component in his Renault had delivered more electrical energy to the car than is allowed under the regulations, 120kW. The spike of power occured during a lap in the opening segment of qualifying. The result will be a blow to Renault, who had delivered both cars through to…

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Singapore set for Hamilton-Verstappen showdown

SINGAPORE — After two close battles with Charles Leclerc at the last two races, Lewis Hamilton looks set to lock horns with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in Singapore. The nature of the circuit, which includes mostly medium and low speed corners, plays to the strengths of the Mercedes and Red Bull while exposing the weakness of the Ferrari. That much was clear from the time sheets on Friday evening. Hamilton led Verstappen by 0.184s, with Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel 0.818s off the pace in third. Verstappen was actually faster than Hamilton…

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Supercars stars avoid bans for comments

Supercars’ drivers Jamie Whincup and Cameron Waters have escaped bans for comments aimed at race officials following Sunday’s controversial race in New Zealand. Governing body Confederation of Australian Motor Sport (CAMS) had threatened to throw the book at seven-time series champion Whincup ahead of next month’s Bathurst 1000 after an extraordinary spray directed at stewards at the recent Auckland SuperSprint. Popular Ford young gun Cameron Waters was also in hot water after he questioned whether results should stand following a controversial safety car period that marred the 200km race. Four-time…

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What happens now for Nico Hulkenberg?

Nico Hulkenberg of Renault F1 Team in the paddock during the Formula One Grand Prix of Italy. Getty Images SINGAPORE — When Nico Hulkenberg awoke to a hazy Singapore on Thursday morning, he must have felt confident his Formula One career could realistically survive beyond 2019. Renault’s decision to partner Daniel Ricciardo with Esteban Ocon for 2020 had left the experienced German scrambling to find a place on the grid, but there were still options available. The most fancied was at Haas with the out-of-sorts Romain Grosjean viewed from the outside…

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Why Leclerc, not Vettel, looks like the champion Ferrari has been waiting for

Ahead of each race in 2019, ESPN is ranking every driver on the grid in our Formula One Power Rankings. In compiling these standings, we have taken out the car factor and focused solely on the drivers and how each has been performing. This is not a prediction for how the race will go this weekend. Nor is it a prediction for how things will look at the end of the season. Instead, read this as a gauge for who has the most influence over everything that lies ahead, who’s…

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Martin Truex Jr. an oldie but goodie with Las Vegas win

The start of the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs brought us more of what we’ve been getting in the regular season: Joe Gibbs Racing victories. And although a lot of the discussion has been around Kyle Busch’s misfortune, rise and then run-in with a lapped driver, we’ll focus on the Gibbs driver who got to Victory Lane on Sunday night — Martin Truex Jr. It’s the third time in the past four years Truex has tasted victory in the playoff opener. One of those years, he went on to win the…

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We can win again in 2019

Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto has dismissed suggestions his team will be unable to add to the victories claimed in Belgium and Italy. Ferrari capitalised on its outright engine advantage to win the high-speed races at Spa-Francorchamps at Monza. Charles Leclerc claimed victory on both occasions, with the latter being Ferrari’s first Italian Grand Prix victory since 2010. The Italian team had failed to win in 2019 until those two races despite glimpses of competitive pace, which highlighted issues with the design of its current car. Binotto is convinced the remaining…

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Truex Jr. wins NASCAR’s opening playoff race

LAS VEGAS — Martin Truex Jr. clearly had one of the best teams this season as he rolled to four victories before the end of June. Then he hit a slump of sports, going nearly three months without a win, but his Joe Gibbs Racing team remained confident it would challenge for the championship. A win in the opening race of the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs solidified their beliefs. Truex won for the fifth time this season Sunday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and earned an automatic berth into the…

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