Japanese driver and ex-Formula 1 star Takuma Sato won on Saturday at the Indianapolis 500 race, making it his second overall. Fernando Alonso had come in 21st, after his hopes had disappeared by the half distance mark — it’s fair to say the 888 motorsports bookmakers would have enjoyed that result.
Alonso lost a lap due to a significant car problem when he was 15th. With 75 laps left, the double world champ had dropped to 21st. This came as a huge disappointment considering his return to F1 next year, and of course due to bidding to wrap up a triple clown.
Sato cruised past a leading Scott Dixon when he crashed, with only 3 laps left, and resulted in having to finish behind a safety car. Race officials had decided against throwing a red flag after a late crash by Spencer Pigot when there were 5 laps to go. He had hit the pit-in-attenuator at a high speed. Pigot had to receive medical attention on the track, was taken to a local hospital but IndyCar has since said he is alert and awake..
Dixen wasn’t happy with the decision, given he led for 111 out of the 200 laps. Dixon did however admit he could have pushed Sato more, claiming there was a chance to clear the Letterman Lanigan driver around the outside, with him holding the apex of each corner. “I probably should have been a little more aggressive on that high side there,” stated Dixon.
“I think he would have just run me up anyway, which maybe would have put both of us in the fence, or maybe just me.” Dixon also claimed that Sato could’ve been a sitting duck regarding a potential restart.
IndyCar rarely runs the procedure of having two-lap shootouts to finish in the event of a caution, unlike Nascar. Sato was able to coast around with Dixon’s plan now ruined from the crash. Sato had won at Indy 500 in 2017, and claimed Dixon would have been difficult to defeat under green.
Graham Rahal, Sato’s Letterman Lanigan partner, came third, in which they were congratulated by Graham and David Letterman’s father.
Belgium Grand Prix
Drivers are getting ready for another circuit on Sunday the 30th of August. Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium is expecting a very different atmosphere than usual due to the coronavirus. Instead of an Orange party, there will be empty seats. This also means Max Verstappen will be racing without his usually vast support.
It looks to be an exciting weekend, with rain showers forecast and no high temperatures. Esteben Ocon is looking forward to a “fresh start” amid his 2020 F1 season, where he will be boosted by a new gearbox and new engine. The Frenchman returned with Renault having sat on the sidelines for a year.
Ocon has so far been surpassed by his teammate Daniel Ricciardo, who has four more points than Ocon’s 16 during the opening 6 races. Ocon is hoping his fate will change this Sunday though, with his new RS20 components as well as getting back into regular racing one again.