Cars & Motorcycles

Autosport 10/09/20

The UK’s ‘must-read’ motorsport magazine AUTOSPORT is revered by fans and industry personnel alike as the ultimate source of motorsport news and analysis. The magazine’s expert editorial covers all aspects of the sport, from major international series such as Formula 1, Sports Car racing and the World Rally Championship, to the less glamorous but hugely important grassroots events in UK club motorsport

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in this issue

1 min.
gasly and sainz provide a breath of fresh air for formula 1

Genuine shocks are rare in modern Formula 1. The cars and teams are normally too reliable for all the usual frontrunners to hit trouble, which is one reason why Pierre Gasly’s Italian Grand Prix victory has been so warmly received. Unpredictability can still happen. As Alex Kalinauckas points out in our report on page 18, Gasly’s victory wasn’t just about luck. Yes, it took a blunder from Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes and fortuitous safety car timing, but Gasly still had to make the most of his opportunity. He didn’t crack as a very motivated and feisty Carlos Sainz Jr closed him down, no mean achievement given what he’s been through over the past year (p13). Gasly’s win represented several milestones. It was the first by a French driver since Olivier Panis’s 1996…

4 min.
williams family stands down from f1

FORMULA 1 The Williams family bowed out of Formula 1 after last Sunday’s Italian Grand Prix as team founder Sir Frank Williams and his daughter Claire stepped down from their roles at the squad. The Williams team was rescued from the financial uncertainty it faced when it announced ahead of last month’s Belgian Grand Prix that it had been bought by American investment fund Dorilton Capital. Deputy team principal Claire Williams said at the time that her role remain unchanged in the short term, but confirmed on the Thursday ahead of the Monza event that she would be stepping down after the weekend. Team principal Sir Frank Williams also ended his association with the organisation he formed back in 1977. “With the future of the team now secured, this feels like the appropriate…

2 min.
renault attaches alpine name to its team for 2021

FORMULA 1 Renault’s Formula 1 team will be rebranded under the Alpine name for the 2021 season. The team will race in blue, representing the colours of France and running with the national tricolore, and will retain Renault branding through its engine supply. It marks the latest iteration of the team from Enstone, which has previously raced as Lotus, Benetton and Toleman, under which it entered F1 in 1981. Alpine has a tradition in rallying and sportscars, and has most recently been present in the FIA World Endurance Championship in the LMP2 class, using a chassis from ORECA for its Signatech Alpine. The move comes as part of an ongoing review of the Renault Group’s properties by new CEO Luca de Meo, who said he wanted Alpine to be in the “middle of…

1 min.
brands back on gt schedule

GT WORLD CHALLENGE EUROPE Brands Hatch is back on the GT World Challenge Europe calendar for 2021, but it remains unclear whether it will be joined by Silverstone as part of the now-traditional British double-header in May. The Brands Sprint Cup event (below) and the Silverstone round of the Endurance Cup were casualties of the coronavirus pandemic this year. Brands has been reinstalled on the calendar with a 2 May date next season, while Silverstone could fill a TBA the following week. Series boss Stephane Ratel explained that Silverstone is one of two options for the second race in May on the 10-date GTWCE schedule. “We need a bit more time to make a decision on which is the best for us,” he said. He explained that he needed greater visibility on the implications…

3 min.
racing point brakes saga ends as appeals dropped

FORMULA 1 The saga surrounding Racing Point’s Formula 1 brake ducts has come to an end after the final teams protesting the FIA’s ruling withdrew their appeals. Racing Point was hit with a 15-point Formula 1 constructors’ championship penalty and a €400,000 fine after it was judged to have used an illegal design process for its 2020 rear brake ducts. The team maintained its innocence throughout the case, claiming it had not illegally used information from Mercedes on its 2019 brake ducts, which its 2020 part was judged to have been a copy of. Racing Point began the process to appeal the ruling through the FIA’s International Court of Appeal in a bid to get the rules clarified and have its penalty overturned. It was joined in the appeal process by rivals Williams, Renault,…

2 min.
bentley goes for title despite axeing works team

INTERCONTINENTAL GT CHALLENGE Bentley will defend its Intercontinental GT Challenge points lead, despite axeing its factory programme with M-Sport. Bathurst 12 Hours winners Jules Gounon, Maxime Soulet and Jordan Pepper (right and below) will share two different customer Continental GT3s in the final three races. The trio of factory drivers, who claimed the Australian series opener with M-Sport in February, will race together in a car run by the K-PAX team when the IGTC resumes with the new Indianapolis 8 Hours fixture on 4 October and again at the rescheduled Spa 24 Hours round later in the month. They will then switch to a car fielded on a customer basis by M-Sport for the series finale, the Kyalami 9 Hours on 22 November. “We had various proposals and, after a lot of toing…