Hartley’s chances running out
While the Formula One title was decided at the Mexican Grand Prix with Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton winning for the fifth time, Kiwi driver Brendon Hartley is still in a race to retain his Scuderia Toro Rosso team seat for 2019.
With two Grand Prix left in the season, he still has a chance to prove himself ahead of Formula 2 driver Alexander Albon who is tipped to take his place.
Hartley has been pleased with his pace in the last few events and remains positive heading to the Brazilian Grand Prix this weekend. He has the latest spec Honda engine and is enthusiastic about the new aero package that he feels suits his driving style.
The Auto´ dromo Jose´ Carlos Pace in Sao Paulo is an ‘old school’ circuit which first held the Brazilian Grand Prix in 1972. It is fast and flowing with a number of changes in elevation and track camber. Fans make for a great atmosphere, while weather can often play its part.
Hartley has competed there in both the World Endurance Championship his third F1 Grand Prix. While last year he retired with a technical problem, he hopes for a better result in 2018.
Cassidy Super GT title hope
Nick Cassidy lines up with co-driver Ryo Hirakawa in the Super GT Series grid for the final race on Sunday with a chance of winning the overall title for the second time. The pairing won the title last season and head to the final round at the Twin ring Motegi in Japan tied in the lead with Naoki Yamamoto/ Jenson Button.
Cassidy and Hirakawa are on a roll having won their first race of the series in the penultimate round at the Autopolis circuit. Cassidy will be keen to seal the title after falling short in the Super Formula single seater series a fortnight ago.
Leading the series into the final round Cassidy finished second to title winner Naoki Yamamoto. After three seasons in Super GT and two in Super Formula, it will be interesting to see if Cassidy stays in Japan for 2019 or heads back to Europe with an opportunity in Formula 2.
War of Wings underway
The $100,000 War of the Wings Sprintcar Series begins tomorrow night at Ruapuna Speedway in Christchurch, with an entry list of 24 cars.
Defending champion Jamie Duff (Christchurch) will come under pressure from last season’s surprise package Connor Rangi (Nelson), Daniel Anderson (Te Anau) and Christchurch’s Luke Keegan, who was a convincing winner in last Saturday night’s feature race.
Anderson could be racing time after damaging his car last weekend. This summer the series has been cut back to nine rounds, in order to unclutter a full schedule of events for the sprintcars, Cromwell hosting the national championship February 1-2.