Formula 1

F1 news LIVE: Press conference updates and times as Lando Norris speaks in Imola

F1 news LIVE: Press conference updates and times as Lando Norris speaks in Imola

Formula 1 returns to Europe for the first time this season as the iconic Imola circuit hosts the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix this weekend.

Lando Norris claimed a stunning win – his first in F1 – last time out in Miami, beating Max Verstappen after a perfectly timed safety car and securing McLaren’s first win since September 2021.

Nonetheless, Verstappen still has a healthy 33-point lead in the drivers’ championship to Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez, with Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in third following another podium in Miami.

There’s work to do for Lewis Hamilton, though, who is enduring his worst-ever start to an F1 season, currently languishing down in ninth. Last year’s race at Imola was cancelled due to heavy flooding in the region, while Verstappen triumphed in 2022 and 2021.

Follow all the latest news from the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix with The Independent

F1 EMILIA ROMAGNA GRAND PRIX – LATEST UPDATES

Kimi Antonelli: Who is Mercedes teen tipped to replace Lewis Hamilton on F1 grid in 2025?

10:20 , Kieran Jackson

Kimi Antonelli – the teenager tipped as a potential replacement for Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes next year – is one of the highest-rated prospects in motorsport right now.

The Italian driver is racing in Formula 2 in 2024, having skipped F3, for Prema Racing alongside British teen and Ferrari reserve Ollie Bearman.

Antonelli, 17, is on Mercedes’ books and was signed on to their junior programme at 11 years of age. In the years since, he has won numerous karting and single-seater competitions, which has thrust him into the spotlight at such a young age.

So much so that Williams have applied to the FIA for special dispensation for Antonelli to race in F1 before his 18th birthday in August, potentially replacing Logan Sargeant. However, the chances of the governing body approving the request is thought to be unlikely.

But what is Antonelli’s background – and could he really step up to F1 at such a young age?

Kimi Antonelli: Who is Mercedes teen tipped to replace Lewis Hamilton in 2025?

Constructors’ standings ahead of Imola:

10:00 , Kieran Jackson

1. Red Bull – 239 points

2. Ferrari – 187 points

3. McLaren – 124 points

4. Mercedes – 64 points

5. Aston Martin – 42 points

6. RB – 19 points

7. Haas – 7 points

8. Alpine – 1 point

9. Williams – 0 points

10. Sauber – 0 points

Lando Norris made the podium at Imola three years ago:

09:43 , Kieran Jackson

Jenson Button warns Lewis Hamilton over ‘different way of racing’ at Ferrari

09:29 , Kieran Jackson

Jenson Button has warned Lewis Hamilton to expect a different driver-team ethos when he moves to Ferrari next year.

Seven-time F1 world champion Hamilton, who has won six of his seven titles with Mercedes, will leave the Silver Arrows at the end of the season after 12 years with the team.

The 39-year-old will link up with Charles Leclerc at Ferrari, replacing Carlos Sainz, as he switches to the sport’s most prestigious team in a final foray to win a record-breaking eighth world championship.

While Ferrari have showed signs of promise up against Red Bull this season, Mercedes have dropped behind McLaren to the fourth-quickest team on the grid, with Hamilton enduring his worst-ever start to a season.

Full quotes below:

Jenson Button warns Lewis Hamilton over ‘different way of racing’ at Ferrari

F1 2024 schedule:

09:16 , Kieran Jackson

ROUND 7 – EMILIA ROMAGNA

Imola Circuit – 17-19 May

ROUND 8 – MONACO

Circuit de Monaco – 24-26 May

ROUND 9 – CANADA

Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Montreal – 7-9 June

ROUND 10 – SPAIN

Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya – 21-23 June

ROUND 11 – AUSTRIA (sprint race)

Red Bull Ring, Spielberg – 28-30 June

ROUND 12 – GREAT BRITAIN

Silverstone Circuit – 5-7 July

ROUND 13 – HUNGARY

Hungaroring, Budapest – 19-21 July

ROUND 14 – BELGIUM

Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps – 26-28 July

ROUND 15 – NETHERLANDS

Circuit Zandvoort – 23-25 August

ROUND 16 – ITALY

Monza Circuit – 30 August – 1 September

ROUND 17 – AZERBAIJAN

Baku City Circuit – 13-15 September

ROUND 18 – SINGAPORE

Marina Bay Street Circuit – 20-22 September

ROUND 19 – UNITED STATES (sprint race)

Circuit of the Americas, Austin – 18-20 October

ROUND 20 – MEXICO

Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Mexico City – 25-27 October

ROUND 21 – BRAZIL (sprint race)

Interlagos Circuit, Sao Paulo – 1-3 November

ROUND 22 – LAS VEGAS

Las Vegas Street Circuit – 21-23 November

ROUND 23 – QATAR (sprint race)

Lusail International Circuit, Lusail – 29 November – 1 December

ROUND 24 – ABU DHABI

Yas Marina Circuit – 6-8 December

FIA press conference:

08:57 , Kieran Jackson

Here’s who we are expecting in the press conference room at 1:30pm (BST):

– Pierre Gasly

– Carlos Sainz

– Kevin Magnussen

– Zhou Guanyu

– Lando Norris

– Daniel Ricciardo

The rest of the drivers will speak to members of the broadcast press, too.

Alex Albon commits future to Williams with new long-term contract

08:45 , Kieran Jackson

Alex Albon has signed a multi-year contract extension with Williams, ending speculation over his future by committing to the team.

The 28-year-old appears set to remain with the British constructor through into the new era of Formula 1 regulations that begin in 2026.

Reports had linked the talented Albon, twice a podium finisher in F1, with a move away from Williams.

But Albon has re-affirmed his commitment to the team he joined ahead of the 2022 season with the Thai confident there are “great things to come”.

Full detail below:

Alex Albon commits future to Williams with new long-term contract

Driver Standings ahead of this weekend:

08:38 , Kieran Jackson

1. Max Verstappen – 136 points

2. Sergio Perez – 103 points

3. Charles Leclerc – 98 points

4. Lando Norris – 83 points

5. Carlos Sainz – 83 points

6. Oscar Piastri – 41 points

7. George Russell – 37 points

8. Fernando Alonso – 33 points

9. Lewis Hamilton – 27 points

10. Yuki Tsunoda -14 points

11. Lance Stroll – 9 points

12. Oliver Bearman – 6 points

13. Nico Hulkenberg – 6 points

14. Daniel Ricciardo – 5 points

15. Esteban Ocon – 1 point

16. Kevin Magnussen – 1 point

17. Alex Albon – 0 points

18. Zhou Guanyu – 0 points

19. Pierre Gasly – 0 points

20. Valtteri Bottas – 0 points

21. Logan Sargeant – 0 points

What are the timings on track in Imola this weekend?

08:35 , Kieran Jackson

(All times BST)

Friday 17 May

  • Free practice 1: 12:30pm

  • Free practice 2: 4pm

Saturday 18 May

  • Free practice 3: 11:30am

  • Qualifying: 3pm

Sunday 19 May

  • Race: 2pm

F1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix!

08:33 , Kieran Jackson

Formula 1 returns to Europe for the first time this season as the iconic Imola circuit hosts the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix this weekend.

Lando Norris claimed a stunning win – his first in F1 – last time out in Miami, beating Max Verstappen after a perfectly timed safety car and securing McLaren’s first win since September 2021.

Nonetheless, Verstappen still has a healthy 33-point lead in the drivers’ championship to Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez, with Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in third following another podium in Miami.

There’s work to do for Lewis Hamilton, though, who is enduring his worst-ever start to an F1 season, currently languishing down in ninth. Last year’s race at Imola was cancelled due to heavy flooding in the region, while Verstappen triumphed in 2022 and 2021.

(Getty Images)

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