In the round-up: George Russell says he didn’t lobby Mercedes to let him overtake his team mate during the Monaco Grand Prix.
Mercedes under “no obligation” to let me past Hamilton – Russell
Russell was heard asking Mercedes to let him by Lewis Hamilton during Sunday’s race. He made the request after learning he had been given a five-second time penalty, and was concerned about the threat from Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari behind him.
“I was being held up by Ocon and Lewis, and Charles was closing me down,” Russell explained. “I was definitely not going to risk anything on Lewis in conditions and a circuit like this.
“With that five-second penalty it could have been a good buffer if Charles had caught up. But it was not needed in the end. I said to the team, no obligation and no pressure from my side, but just to consider.”
I’d be leading in a more competitive season – Alonso
Fernando Alonso says he would be the championship leader with his current points haul in a season without a dominant team.
“Of the seasons that I remember, back in the 2000s or early 2010s, I will be leading the championship with the results that I got this year,” he said after Sunday’s race. “But now there is Red Bull and Max pVerstappen[ dominating every race and even with great results, you’re just stepping behind them, every race,” the Aston Martin driver said.
“We didn’t have the best car in 2010 and we arrived leading the championship in Abu Dhabi. We didn’t have the best car in 2012 and we still fight for the championship until the last lap in Brazil. So the championship is long, we will not give up.”
Alonso has 93 points after six grands prix in 2023. The last time that would have been enough to head the points table at this stage was in 2012 when Alonso led at that point of the season. The only other instance using the current points format would have been in 2010.
Hamilton contract talks “not a negotiation”
Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said there’s “nothing behind” recent speculation reported elsewhere over Hamilton’s future, insisting the driver and team are working towards a new deal. Hamilton is in his 11th season with the team and Wolff said his latest contract will differ little from his original one.
“We are in a super-happy position with Lewis,” said Wolff. “There weren’t any stumbling blocks in the contract negotiations. We have a pact and we have had that since many, many years that we wouldn’t talk to any other driver before we have taken a decision to stay together or not.
“I was never a millimetre in doubt that there was any discussion. Someone just felt to place that maybe to in a way play a role in what seemed to be negotiation. But it is not negotiation, it’s sitting on a table and saying what is it we need to adapt in the contract. So there’s nothing to it.”
Kanaan defends multi-red finish to Indy 500
IndyCar veteran Tony Kanaan, who drove his final Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, defended the series’ hotly-debated decision to red-flag the race three times in the closing stages and hold the final restart on the last lap. Josef Newgarden won the race after passing Marcus Ericsson after the late restart.
Kanaan, who won the 2013 edition of the race which ended under caution following a crash, said: “We need to think about the show.
“The biggest complaint we have every year was we shouldn’t finish a race under the yellow. That’s going to hurt someone. Actually 33 guys are pissed right now and one guy is happy. That’s the reality.
“Could have they called it earlier? Yes. Could have, should have, would have, but we ended under green, and that’s what the fans kept asking us every time. I won under yellow, and everybody hated it at some point.”
Penske: IndyCar “very fortunate” after wheel cleared fence
Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IndyCar owner Roger Penske said the series was fortunate a wheel which was ripped off Kyle Kirkwood’s car during Sunday’s Indy 500 did not injure anyone after flying over a debris fence.
“I saw what had happened,” said Penske. “I saw it bounced on top of a building and went and hit a car over there, which obviously is very concerning.
“We have tethers on the wheels, and it was a rear wheel that came off, and I’m sure the guys at IndyCar will look at it, will determine what really happened. We haven’t seen a wheel come off in a long time. We have high fences here. But we were very fortunate we didn’t have a bad accident.”
Notable posts from Twitter, Instagram and more:
— Claire Cottingham (@Cla_Cottingham) May 28, 2023
Here’s my interview with Robin Matthews, whose white Chevy Cruze she calls “snowball” was hit by a wheel that flew over the fence in a crash during #Indy500. Snowball towed. President @jdouglas4 got her another car to drive home. (video courtesy Matt Whisner/WTHR) #TrackTeam13 pic.twitter.com/8DV9XLvzXY
— Rich Nye (@RichNye13) May 29, 2023
The #Indy500 was from a racing perspective a success, but be in no doubt it dodged a #LeMans ‘55 disaster. Had the wheel landed in the grandstand, what questions would we be waking up to this morning about the sport we love?
— Nick Trott (@NickTrott27) May 29, 2023
✨ Le Mans Legends ✨
The #14 Nielsen Racing Oreca 07 dressed to impress at the Centenary of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
— Nielsen Racing (@RacingNielsen) May 29, 2023
It was great to meet with the FIFA President Gianni Infantino at the Monaco Grand Prix, discuss mutual issues like tackling online abuse and tour our Race Control. pic.twitter.com/y49ooU9FxO
— Mohammed Ben Sulayem (@Ben_Sulayem) May 29, 2023
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