Di Resta back
Former F1 racer Paul di Resta will return to the paddock this year after being named as Williams’ reserve driver. Di Resta contested three world championship seasons with the Force India team, scoring 121 points before losing his seat and returning to the DTM. Di Resta replaces Adrian Sutil, and will split his duties with his DTM campaign with Mercedes. “It’s going to be a busy season combining both F1 and DTM,” said the Scot. “I will give my full support to both.”
Juan Pablo Montoya won the opening race of the Indycar season at St Petersburg last weekend.
Simon Pagenaud led in the early stages, but Montoya snuck ahead mid-race and held on to the flag to give Team Penske a 1-2 as the squad celebrated its 50th anniversary with a special livery.
“It was good,” said Montoya, who was second in the table last year on a wins tiebreak with Scott Dixon. “The Chevy was good all day. It was exciting to have a new paint scheme and come out and win with it. It’s just awesome. We started the year last year like this. I felt this morning [in the warm-up practice] we had a really good car and it paid off.”
Montoya’s path to victory was made easier by poleman Will Power being forced to withdraw. He suffered mild concussion from a crash in Friday practice and was unable to race due to nausea.
Penske’s Tim Cindric said: “Obviously this is a very difficult decision to make in the first race of the season, but Will’s health and safety is the most important thing to consider.”
Behind Montoya and Pagenaud, Ryan Hunter-reay prevented a Penske podium lockout. The Andretti Autosport driver made a late move on Helio Castrovenes to take third. Mikhail Aleshin and Takuma Sato completed the top six, with reigning champion Dixon seventh.
An alternative pit strategy had put Conor Daly in contention but a front wing failure near the end dropped him down to 13th.
Former Manor Formula 1 driver Alexander Rossi was highest of the rookies, finishing 12th.