Thursday, November 10, 2016

What to watch this Weekend (Nov 11th - Nov 16th)

  • Formula 1 - Brazilian Grand Prix; from Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace-Interlagos, San Paolo, Brazil. Practice #1. Friday @ 11am - 12:30am (NBCSN(HD)) live
  • Formula 1 - Brazilian Grand Prix; from Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace-Interlagos, San Paolo, Brazil. Qualifying. Saturday @ 11am - 12:30pm (CNBC(HD)) live; replay @ 6:30pm
  • Formula 1 - Brazilian Grand Prix; from Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace-Interlagos, San Paolo, Brazil.  Race. Sunday @ 10:30am - 1pm (NBCSN(HD)) live; replay Sunday @ 7:30pm 
  • V8 Supercars. Goldcoast 600. Sunday @ 5pm - 6pm (CBSSN) delayed airing from 10/23
  • Chasing Classic Cars. Tuesday @ 7pm - 7:30pm (VelocityHD) replay 
  • Motorweek. Tuesday @ 7:30pm - 8pm (VelocityHD) 
  • Garage Squad. Wednesday @ 10pm - 10:30pm (VelocityHD)
The last few races of the season have been crazy, with Hams figuring out his launch method and taking Pole to Checkered flag twice, but Mexico was crazy for more reasons than the Driver's Championship. Controversy abounded, with Vettel chasing down Verstappen late in the race with fresher tires; Verstappen locked up and went through the grass, after the ultra high speed ending turn 1, exiting ahead of Vettel out of the grass and not yeilding the spot despite most folks on the wall thinking he gained an advantage. The Verstappen stayed in front of Vettel and had too much pace for Vettel to get by, and Ricciardo caught up to Vettel in the melee but was unable to make the move stick. Getting back to the Verstappen course cut, there wasn't an announcement from the stewards until another lap went by and it stated that they would figure it out after the race concluded, which didn't make a lot of sense. Scuderia pit wall was livid, only superseded by Vettel cursing FIA Director Charlie Whiting, also cursing Verstappen and everyone else involved. The top three finishers, Hams, Rosberg and Verstappen all park and go into the waiting room and suddenly the stewards announce that Verstappen was assessed a 5sec penalty which effectively moved him from 3rd to 5th because of the Red Bull sammich Vettel was in at the finish. Then the cameras shift and through the crowd of fans in front of the podium comes Vettel, escorted by his entire team, while Verstappen gets the news and is asked to leave by the FIA official. Then after the race and interviews were long over, the stewards decided on a 10sec penalty for Vettel for driving erratically in defense of Ricciardo's advances, resulting of Max running slower than Vettel but doing his best to maintain position. This pushed Ricciardo into 3rd for the race. Seems odd because Verstappen is the one who put Vettel in that position, but in the end Verstappen finished ahead of Vettel, in 4th. Possibly the most eventful and colorful race of this season; radio sound bites for days.

With the smoke cleared after the checkered flag the current Driver's standings are as follows: Rosberg, Hamilton (-19), Ricciardo (-107), Vettel (-162), Raikkonen (-171), Verstappen (-172). Brazil should be another tight battle; there's just about no way to pass an evenly matched car at Interlagos, which if you remember last year is what kept Hamilton from getting past Nico in the final laps. If Rosberg keeps coming in second with Hams winning he'll still win the championship by 5pts; he'll need Red Bull to bring it in the last two races after he gets out to the lead. Qualy will be a big deal in Brazil.
Enjoy your weekends.

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