Monday, October 26, 2020

Portuguese Grand Prix Hosts Record-Breaking Win For Lewis Hamilton

Photo Credit: Sam Bloxham/LAT Imagesé Pirelli

At the last round of the 2020 Formula 1 season, Lewis Hamilton performed a magnificent feat with his victory at the Eifel Grand Prix. On the historic Nurburgring race track, the British driver equalled the impressive all-time win record of legendary German driver Michael Schumacher with 91 grand prix victories. With no signs of losing momentum behind the wheel of the well-tuned machine out of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team stables, it has been assumed Hamilton would soon capture the career statistic for himself. This season’s 12th round at the Algarve International Circuit in Portugal presented the first occasion for Hamilton to set a new milestone.

Located in town of Portimao, a 4.653-kilometer race course invited Formula 1 back to the republic where the Portuguese Grand Prix had not run since 1996. The 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix assembled on a relatively new competition course with a series of features found in classic grand prix circuits. Capturing the pole on a time set on medium compound tires, Lewis Hamilton was in ideal striking position for his record-breaking 92nd Formula 1 victory ahead of the 66-lap Sunday feature race. 

In a Formula 1 season that has been marked by some incredibly surreal starts, the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix is perhaps one of the most bizarre. The opening lap at the Algarve International Circuit occurred just as the track was dampened by a light rain causing some uneasiness among the top grid starters including the Mercedes-AMG race cars. Though the two Mercedes drivers led through the first several corners, both Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas struggling to gain grip during the early stint of the grand prix. 

Despite there not being a major crash on the opening lap, there was contact between Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez exiting turn four resulting in the #11 Racing Point being sent into a spin. Perez fell to the back of the running order but continued after returning to the pits for new soft compound tires. In fact, the Mexican Racing Point driver would ultimately recover to have a great finish in Portugal.

The before-mentioned grip issues for the Mercedes-AMG contenders appeared at the middle of the first lap. Out of turn 7, Valtteri Bottas was able to sweep passed Lewis Hamilton’s #44 car but was himself challenged by the unlikely might of Carlos Sainz Jr. driving his Renault-powered McLaren at the start of the second lap. Both the McLarens of Sainz and Lando Norris had fantastic starts on soft compound tires positioned in second and fourth respectively on lap two. However, on the fifth corner, Sainz’s #55 car achieved a unique pleasure of passing a Mercedes-AMG W11 EQ Performance race car under a competitive, on-track move. Carlos Sainz Jr.’s lead in the Portuguese Grand Prix lasted until the sixth lap when Bottas retook the top spot as the medium tires came to an optimum temperature.

Photo Credit: Glenn Dunbar/LAT Images/Pirelli

On Lap 18, a turn one altercation occurred as the #18 Racing Point RP20 race car of Lance Stroll and Lando Norris’s #4 McLaren made contact. The collision occurred after several laps as Stroll attempted to pass Norris with the Canadian rapidly faster on Portimao Circuit’s front stretch. Fighting in seventh and eighth place spots, the Racing Point had rapidly closed up on the McLaren into the first corner. Travelling faster in a straight line thanks to DRS, Stroll shot to the right of Norris but was not completely clear of the McLaren as he turned in crowding his competitor resulting in a side impact where both vehicles suffered damage and needed to pit at the end of the lap. With the collision under investigation, Formula 1 stewards were led to the conclusion that Stroll was at fault for the incident assessing the driver a five-second penalty. Lando Norris finished in 13th place while Lance Stroll would ultimately retire on lap 51 due to more extensive damage to his Racing Point being the only driver not to finish the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix. 

For what would be the winning move for the race in Portugal, the two Mercedes-AMG vehicles battled on lap 19. Losing the lead on the first lap, Lewis Hamilton had maintained within a second of Valtteri Bottas. As the teammates crossed the start/finish line for lap 20, Hamilton had used DRS to ultimately pass Bottas. Pitting once on lap 40, Hamilton pulled out a significant lead as the laps ticked away. 

Photo Credit: Charles Coates/LAT Images/Pirelli

Finishing 25.592 seconds ahead of runner-up Valtteri Bottas, Lewis Hamilton’s recovery greatly from an uneasy start on the Algarve International Circuit winning the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix. With his 92nd victory secured, Hamilton is now established as the winningest driver in Formula 1 history achieving the accomplishment after 262 races. Crediting his current Mercedes-AMG team for their constant push to give him the best cars since he joined the organization in 2013. Additionally, Lewis Hamilton commented in a post-race news release on the Mercedes-AMG Formula 1 team’s website saying, “No one is sitting back on the success, everyone is pushing and pushing and pushing. That’s the most incredible thing to be surrounded by: it inspires you, that collaboration, and there’s nothing quite like it.” 

Photo Credit: Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Valtteri Bottas settled into a quiet second-place finish in Portugal crossing the line more than 8.9 seconds over the Red Bull Racing car of Max Verstappen. After a refreshing moment of strength in qualifying where Scuderia Ferrari enjoyed a fourth place start obtained by Charles Leclerc, the driver from Monaco scored fourth at the end of the Portuguese Grand Prix. The second Scuderia Ferrari ran deeper in the field throughout the race but was able to salvage a 10th place finish after 66 laps.

Starting in ninth place, Pierre Gasly fought his way to another fine effort with his Honda-powered AlphaTauri taking fifth at the end of the race in Portugal. After a brief time in the lead of the Portuguese Grand Prix, Carlos Sainz Jr. crossed the Algarve International Circuit’s finish line in sixth place. Hotly competing to gain third place in the constructors’ championship, Sainz’s team McLaren is still trailing Racing Point by two points. Sergio Perez driving for Racing Point finished seventh capturing a valuable six points after what was a hard-fought race. 

Photo Credit: Sam Bloxham/LAT Images/Pirelli

Eighth and ninth place at the end of the Portuguese Grand Prix saw both of the Renault F1 Team cars gaining points. Esteban Ocon scored the higher position compared to teammate Daniel Ricciardo being the third time the Frenchman finished ahead of the Australian.

Leaving Portugal after a memorable grand prix, Formula 1 teams were now destined for a return to Italy competing on the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari generally referred to as Imola. The Emilia Romagna Grand Prix will be staged under an experimental two-day schedule with the main race being staged on November 1st. 

2020 Formula 1
Portuguese Grand Prix
Race Results

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Hamilton On Top After Unique F1 Pole Battle In Portugal

Photo Credit: LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

Hosting Formula 1's first Portuguese Grand Prix since 1996, the Algarve International Circuit (or also known as the Portimao Circuit) was constructed in 2008 and has been the site of MotoGP, several sports car competitions as well as a 2009 A1 Grand Prix event. Formula 1 teams have visited the track for pre-season winter testing in 2009 but a competitive grand prix had never been held until this year receiving a date as part of the modified 2020 race schedule.

A 15-turn, 4.653-kilometer race course, the Portugal’s Portimao Circuit has been described in many accounts for having elements of older tracks with numerous elevation changes and tight turns. In the practices leading up to qualifying, drivers also noted the slipperiness of the track’s recently resurfaced asphalt. The challenges presented in the tricky track have resulted in Pirelli bringing their three hardest compound slick tires. The process of setting the grid for Sunday’s 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix would involve several instances of ingenuity. 

Photo Credit: Zak Mauger/LAT Images/Pirelli

Whether in a long-established grand prix or one of the improvised outings for 2020, the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team continues to show supremacy when it comes to pace. Valtteri Bottas ended all three practice sessions at the Portimao Circuit at the top of the time charts. Bottas’ teammate and current drivers’ championship points leader Lewis Hamilton was second-quickest in two of three of the sessions encountering difficulty with high winds and two red flags in the second Friday practice. In Saturday’s qualifying, it was Hamilton’s turn to take the top spot on the time sheet.  

Besting his teammate with a 1-minute, 16.652-second lap time, the pole-winning effort by Lewis Hamilton was accomplished in an unorthodox fashion. Not only was the fastest time set on the weekend’s  medium compound tire, Hamilton’s #44 car undertook multiple hot laps in the final Q3 run. Completing three laps in the successful effort to post the top time, Hamilton clinched his 97th Formula 1 career pole position. Beaten by 0.102 seconds around the 4.653-kilometer Portuguese track, Eifel Grand Prix pole sitter Valtteri Bottas settled for second on the grid securing the Mercedes-AMG team another 1-2 in 2020 Formula 1 qualifying. 

Max Verstappen’s appearance in third place following Portuguese Grand Prix qualifying continues to trend of seeing the Dutch Red Bull Racing driver closest to mirror the dominant Mercedes-AMG entries. Verstappen’s top Q3 time was 0.252 seconds slower than Hamilton’s pole-sitting lap time. Joining the Honda-powered Red Bull on the second row is a pleasantly surprising effort from Scuderia Ferrari with their driver Charles Leclerc. The fourth place starting spot for Leclerc appears to show some progress being made in the development of the SF1000 race car. A new diffuser debuts this weekend on the Ferrari team as the latest of several technical upgrades. While Leclerc will be positioned high on the Portuguese Grand Prix starting grid, teammate Sebastian Vettel is starting deeper in the field in 15th place.  

Photo Credit: Zak Mauger/LAT Images/Pirelli

Racing Point’s Sergio Perez recorded the fifth fastest time in Q3 accompanied by Red Bull Racing driver Alexander Albon on the third row. In seventh and eighth place, the McLaren race cars set almost identical Q3 lap times. Carlos Sainz Jr. narrowly claimed an edge over teammate Lando Norris prevailing by just 0.005 of a second. Pierre Gasly’s AlphaTauri and the Renault race car of Daniel Ricciardo round out the top-10 of the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix’s starting order. 

Returning to on-track action in Portugal is Lance Stroll. Initially pulling out of the Eifel Grand Prix due to stomach discomfort, Stroll was made aware he had contracted COVID-19. Following a difficult Friday practice session where he and Max Verstappen collided, the Canadian Racing Point driver will start the Portuguese Grand Prix in 12th place.   

Shaping up to be a potentially unpredictable 66-lap race, the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix will run Sunday at 2:10 P.M. local time (9:10 A.M. Eastern Time).


2020 Formula 1
Portuguese Grand Prix
Starting Grid

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Lewis Hamilton Ties Michael Schumacher's Win Record With Eifel Grand Prix Victory

 Photo Credit: Zak Mauger / LAT Images/ Pirelli

The 11th event in Formula 1's modified 17-round schedule for 2020, the Nurburgring once again hosts the top open wheel competitors after a seven-year absence. One of the world’s most famous motorsport venues in the world, the German race complex predates the Formula 1 World Championship holding its first grand prix in 1927. Operating as the Eifel Grand Prix in reference to the vast European mountain region surrounding the Nurburgring, the 2020 race is the first time the 5.148-kilometer GP-Strecke track welcomes the vehicles of Formula 1's current turbo/hybrid race car era.  

Set for 60 laps, Sunday’s 2020 Eifel Grand Prix assembled with the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team providing a patriotic presence with both cars on the front row. In a tight Saturday qualifying, Valtteri Bottas found enough speed to place him ahead of Lewis Hamilton for pole position on the race grid. In addition to Sebastian Vettel starting in 11th place for Ferrari, the German crowd was granted a second home country driver to cheer on as Nico Hulkenberg was selected to sit-in for Lance Stroll who reported being unwell on Saturday. 

Compared to the calamity that took place at the start previous grand prix events, the opening laps of the Eifel Grand Prix were a very tame affair. The Mercedes-AMG team cars battled into first corner with Valtteri Bottas fending off Lewis Hamilton. Drivers able to gain ground on the opening lap of the race was Antonio Giovinazzi and Nico Hulkenberg who both moved up by three positions.  

Photo Credit: LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

Williams driver George Russell was the first retirement of the Eifel Grand Prix. On lap 13, Russell entered into the Nurburgring’s first corner battling the Alfa Romeo of Kimi Raikkonen who were both following the recently pitted Ferrari driven by Sebastian Vettel. Exiting the turn, the left front wheel of Raikkonen’s car made contact with Russell’s right rear tire sending the right side of #63 Williams FW43 race car into the air for a brief second. The Williams Racing vehicle landed back on four wheels but suspension damage caused the impact led George Russel to stop on track later in the lap requiring a virtual safety car period for track workers to recover the machine. Kimi Raikkonen was assessed as a 10-second time penalty for the collision and continued to finish 12th in the grand prix where he set a series record for total starts.

In addition to the accident towards the back of the running order on lap 13, a major incident occurred at the front. Braking hard into the first corner, leader Valtteri Bottas locked-up the front tires of his #77 Mercedes race car. Taking advantage of Bottas’ misstep, teammate Lewis Hamilton surged by on the exit of the turn and took the lead. Pitting for a new set of medium compound tires at the end of the lap, Valtteri Bottas suffered a race-ending issue almost immediately after the pit stop. The power unit installed on the #77 car began to fail dropping well off the pace and forcing Bottas to retire after 18 laps at the Nurburgring. Valtteri Bottas’ early exit from the Eifel Grand Prix was the first retirement of the season for the Mercedes-AMG Formula 1 team as a whole. The Renault of Esteban Ocon as well as the Red Bull Racing car of Alexander Albon were also parked into their paddock garages a handful of laps after Bottas. 

As one of the Mercedes-AMG racers dropped out of the race, a podium position was up for grabs amongst drivers not usually given a chance to seize such a valuable finishing spot. In prime position heading into the middle portion of the Eifel Grand Prix, the McLaren of Lando Norris held third place behind Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen competing for his second podium of the 2020 season. Sadly for the young British driver, issues with his vehicle’s Renault power unit began to slow his progress before his lap 29 pit stop. Though Norris was able to persevere in the race just gradually sliding down the running order, the #4 McLaren was retired on lap 44 stopping beyond the runoff area of turn six. The placement of McLaren required a physical safety car period to recover Norris’ vehicle. With the Mercedes-AMG GT-R safety car briefly leading the field from lap 45 until the end of lap 49, the Eifel Grand Prix became the fifth consecutive Formula 1 race to feature a safety car period. 

In a final 10-lap run, Lewis Hamilton flew to the 2020 Eifel Grand Prix for what was a major record-tying victory. The British driver achieved his 91st career win placing him alongside the all-time Formula 1 grand prix victor Michael Schumacher. Capturing his momentous victory in the seven-time world champion’s home country of Germany, Hamilton’s accomplishment was farther honoured by Michael Schumacher’s son Mick presenting him with one of his father’s helmets. “It was beyond my wildest dreams to be equaling his number of race wins and it just shows that dreams can come true. It’s an incredible honour and something that will take some time to sink in.”, said Hamilton in a post-race release on the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team’s website.

Photo Credit: LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

Crossing the line in second place 4.470 seconds behind Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes, Max Verstappen posted his eighth podium of the 2020 season. The Red Bull Racing driver also narrowly captured the single point for posting the fastest lap at the Nurburgring with a 1-minute, 28.139-second lap time. Set on the final lap, Max Verstappen’s best time was effort beat Lewis Hamilton’s top lap by 6/1000ths of a second.

Photo Credit: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images for Honda North America

Triumphant in the fight for the third and final podium spot was Daniel Ricciardo. The first podium for Ricciardo since his victory on the streets of Monaco in 2018, the Australian’s result was the Renault F1 Team’s first top-three finish since rejoining Formula 1 in 2016. “Oh wow, it feels like the first time I ever got a podium. These emotions and that feeling you get when you get out the car, hug the team, the mechanics slapping you on the helmet, it’s just amazing and I am so happy we did it! It’s obviously my first one with Renault and it’s something I wanted to achieve when I set out on this journey with the team.”, said Daniel Ricciardo on the Renault DP World F1 Team’s website. Ricciardo will be leaving the team after the 2020 season for McLaren while his vacant seat will be filled by Fernando Alonso.

For the second race in a row, Sergio Perez brought his Racing Point RP20 car to a fourth place finish. Carlos Sainz Jr. driving the remaining McLaren completed the Eifel Grand Prix in fifth place ending an undesirable two-race streak of early retirements. Pierre Gasly scored his second-best finish of the 2020 season collecting a sixth place result crossing the line ahead of the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc.

Photo Credit: Mark Sutton / LAT Images/ Pirelli

The final three points-paying positions in the Eifel Grand Prix were obtained by competitors not generally associated with the top-10 runners this season. From 20th place, Nico Hulkenberg’s relief driving performance for Racing Point netted an impressive 8th place after 60 laps in home of his home crowd. Hulkenberg was also the highest finishing German driver at the Nurburgring as fellow country-mate Sebastian Vettel crossed the line in 11th place. Enduring a dismal season with a consistently slow Haas F1 Team race car and bad luck, Frenchman Romain Grosjean finally collected his first championship points for 2020 finishing in ninth place through the employment of a single-stop pit strategy. Italian Antonio Giovinazzi grabbed the tenth position spot at the end of Eifel Grand Prix driving for Alfa Romeo Racing. 

The next round for the 2020 Formula 1 championship will be the Portuguese Grand Prix with the race scheduled for October 25th.

2020 Formula 1
Eifel Grand Prix
Race Results

Bottas Becomes King of the Hill After Qualifying for Eifel Grand Prix


Photo Credit: FIA Pool/LAT Images/Pirelli

Staging 40 grand prix events between 1951 and 2013, the Nurburgring exists as a popular German locale for automotive speed has assembled races under the banner of the German Grand Prix, European Grand Prix and Luxembourg Grand Prix. For 2020, Formula 1 cars return to the track to participate in the Eifel Grand Prix weekend.

Formula 1's return to the Nurburgring as literally dampened by weather on Friday. The 5.148-kilometer GP-Strecke within the historic German complex was soaked and covered in heavy fog. Though race cars are equipped to run in wet weather, the fog created a safety concern in relations to accessing hospital care in case of a worst case scenario. Fog prevented flight of a medical helicopter while the road travel to the nearest FIA-approved hospital was beyond a travel distance of 20 minutes. The sanctioning body elected to cancel the two practice sessions for Friday leaving team with only the Saturday morning practice to familiarize themselves with a track the series hasn’t raced on for seven years.

Prior to the start of Saturday’s action, Racing Point driver Lance Stroll withdrew from competition citing feeling unwell. In relief of the Canadian, Germany’s Nico Hulkenberg was called back for a third time in 2020 by the Racing Point organization teaming up with Sergio Perez (the driver he substituted for the two Silverstone races in July). 

Posting the fastest time in the one and only practice ahead of Eifel Grand Prix qualifying, Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team pilot Valtteri Bottas scored pole at the Nurburgring in a captivating late minute battle with teammate Lewis Hamilton and Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen. Bottas knocked Hamilton off the top spot for Sunday’s main event with a 1-minute, 25.259-second lap time. The pole for the driver of the #77 Mercedes-AMG F1 W11 EQ Performance race car is his third of the season. Valtteri Bottas is riding high after his impressive win at the last Formula 1 stop in Russia.

Photo Credit: Steve Etherington/Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Beaten by 0.256 seconds, Lewis Hamilton settled for the second place spot on the grid. Losing their full season consecutive run of front row occupation for 2020 after Russian Grand Prix qualifying, the Mercedes-AMG team celebrates the revival of their time trial domination. Racing on home soil, the Mercedes-Benz factory team once more faced a fierce challenge from the Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen. The Honda-powered race car was only 0.037 seconds slower than Lewis Hamilton. Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc joined Verstappen on the second row of the Eifel Grand Prix’s starting grid.

Photo Credit: Mark Sutton LAT Images Pirelli

The third row for the race at the Nurburgring is shared by the second Red Bull Racing race car piloted by Alexander Albon and the Renault of Daniel Ricciardo. Registering a lap time just 0.019 seconds slower than his teammate Ricciardo, Esteban Ocon will start in seventh place in the Eifel Grand Prix beside Lando Norris driving for McLaren. Sergio Perez for Racing Point and the second McLaren wheeled by Carlos Sainz Jr. rounds out the top 10 starting position for Sunday’s 60-lap main event.

Called to the track on Saturday morning in reserve for Lance Stroll, Nico Hulkenberg had no time to adjust to the Racing Point machine ahead of qualifying resulting in him posting the slowest track time. Hulkenberg will start in 20th place for the 2020 Eifel Grand Prix.

2020 Formula 1
Eifel Grand Prix
Starting Grid

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Honda To Abandon Formula 1 After 2021 Season

Photo Credit: Charles Coates/Motorsport Images through American Honda Co., Inc.

Throughout the history of Formula 1, the sport has featured a revolving door of automobile manufacturers who have entered and exited for miscellaneous reasons. 

Lamborghini, Subaru and Spyker Cars are some prominent names in the automotive world that had an involvement in Formula 1 too brief for some to remember. Other companies such as BMW, Toyota and Porsche have previously operated as heavy hitters in the global open wheel series but are not actively part of the sport. Formula 1 also contained a number of names that have operated in several prominent stints. First involved in grand prix racing in 1964, Honda’s Formula 1 history is defined as both a constructor and engine supplier. Currently supplying power units to Red Bull Racing and Scuderia AlphaTauri, Honda has announced intentions to end their most recent participation in Formula 1 racing.

With the end of the 2021 Formula 1 season, the Japanese automaker will no longer contribute propulsion to entrants. In a speech made by President, Representative Director and CEO of Honda Motor Co., LTD Takahiro Hachigo, Honda’s cited reason to discontinue their present role in the sport is related to the company’s increasing focus on developing new technologies for production vehicles to comply with environmental targets. Planning to have 2/3rds of the automobiles sold across the world electrified, Honda is targeting carbon neutrality by 2050. After the completion of the 2021 obligations to Formula 1, Honda plans to divert staff and personnel working with their Formula 1 power unit program into their research and development department to create carbon-reducing powerplant technologies.

The decision by Honda leaves two teams in search of a new power unit supplier for the 2022 season. Both teams having won grand prix events in 2020 with Honda power, Red Bull Racing and Scuderia AlphaTauri seemed pleased with their propulsion for the year. This year, Max Verstappen won the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix with Red Bull Racing while the AlphaTauri group celebrated victory at the Italian Grand Prix with winning driver Pierre Gasly. Reacting to the news, Red Bull Racing’s Team Principal Christian Horner commented in a team statement posted online, “As a Team we understand how difficult it has been for Honda Motor Company to reach the decision to step back from Formula 1 at the end of the 2021 season.” Horner also expressed the team’s disappointment in the announcement but also conveyed gratitude to Honda for the five wins scored by the Red Bull-owned grand prix organizations. While announcing their departure, Honda is still devoted to creation of a competitive power unit for the 2021 season with both teams.

Honda’s recent stint in Formula 1 came following the announcement of the sport’s current turbocharged/hybrid power unit configuration introduced for 2014. Partnering with McLaren (a team which Honda had enjoyed some major success in the past), the Japanese auto brand elected to wait until 2015 to enter competition with their gasoline/electric powertrain. Performing poorly with McLaren from 2015 to 2017 with the power unit receiving much ridicule due to lack of competitiveness and reliability problems, Honda secured a new deal for the 2018 season with Scuderia Toro Rosso (transforming into AlphaTauri this year). Toro Rosso’s corporate relative Red Bull Racing adopted Honda performances in 2019 and secured a victory for the auto company at the year’s Austria Grand Prix before winning two more times.

Red Bull Racing and AlphaTauri have a tricky job ahead finding a power unit supplier for the 2022 Formula 1 season and beyond. The use of all three remaining powerplant options will provide obstacles to the teams. The top contender would be Mercedes-Benz but they’re slated to supply four teams next year including their factory team that is a top adversary for Red Bull Racing. Renault had previously provided engines to both Red Bull Racing and AlphaTauri but the relationship ended on a sour note a few seasons ago. Finally, the option of Ferrari may be appealing by the performance of the 2020 competition package. Other rumoured alternatives could involve a new Formula 1 powerplant supplier or Red Bull Racing developing their own power units.

Though saying Sayōnara to Formula 1 on October 2nd, the Japanese automaker sent somewhat of a mixed message about competing with a gasoline/electric hybrid powerplant platform in open wheel racing one day later. Honda reaffirmed its commitment to the IndyCar Series and the Indianapolis 500 by confirming their involvement of a power unit to conform with the racing tour’s upcoming introduction of hybrid technology in competition cars for 2023.