Marc Marquez has told brother and new Repsol Honda team-mate Alex Marquez he must "earn" a contract renewal.

Alex, 23, won the Moto2 title in 2019 and will make the step up to MotoGP for the 2020 season after replacing the retiring Jorge Lorenzo in November.

Six-time MotoGP world champion Marc signed a new four-year contract extension last week - keeping him at Honda until the end of 2024 - but his younger sibling has just a single-season deal for his debut campaign.

And Marc, who is bidding for a fifth straight title in 2020, insists he will have no impact on any decision to extend Alex's terms.

"At no point does the team-mate touch on the subject of contracts," he said at a press conference on Thursday.

"I have never vetoed anyone. I did not veto last year the arrival of Jorge Lorenzo, nor will I impose on [Honda] my brother or anyone else.

"If Alex wants to stay with Honda, he will have to earn it himself. If he doesn't, another team-mate will come to the team.

"Alex is old enough to make his own career. I'm focusing on my own."

Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes broke down on day two of Formula One pre-season testing in Barcelona.

The six-time F1 world champion's W11 ground to a halt during the afternoon session at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on Thursday.

Hamilton had to wait at the side of the track as the red flags were waved before his car was taken back to the garage.

Mercedes tweeted: "W11 is back in the garage. The team will now take a look to identify the issue which caused Lewis to stop on track."

The team later revealed Hamilton's car was troubled by "an oil pressure anomaly".

"@LewisHamilton stopped on track due to an oil pressure anomaly, which made the engine shut down as a precautionary measure," Mercedes said on Twitter.

"We will keep investigating further but unfortunately that concludes our running for the day."

The malfunction occurred just a fortnight before Hamilton starts the defence of his title at the Australian Grand Prix.

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel topped the leaderboard in the morning session after spinning into the gravel, while Red Bull driver Max Verstappen spun twice.

Hamilton was seventh-fastest on day one of testing after clocking up 89 laps.

Lewis Hamilton is still in no rush to enter contract talks with Mercedes amid "crazy" speculation over his future.

The six-time Formula One world champion is in the final year of his deal and continues to be linked with a move to Ferrari.

Hamilton reiterated that he is not in a hurry to hold negotiations with the Silver Arrows, but expects to get around the table in the near future as the 35-year-old prepares to start the defence of his title next month.

"We haven't sat down and talked yet," said the Briton as he and Mercedes boss Toto Wolff talked to Sky Sports F1.

"It's crazy because there's all these talks in the media and everything.

"I have a certain approach normally in the sense that I don't stress. I trust Toto and we have that trust between us.

"We have told each other basically what our goals are, and what our aims are, and our commitments and so I don't ever feel there's necessarily always a rush.

"But sometimes Toto's like 'is everything okay?'. So we always keep the channel open and I'm sure in the near future we'll start to sit down. But I don't feel stressed."

Team principal Wolff is also relaxed about Hamilton's future.

The German said: "I texted Lewis the other day and [said] I'm reading all these comments in the press about our negotiations and that Lewis is asking for so much money – we have never talked about it. It's all made up.

"Then I said maybe we should sit down one day and have the chat. But I think I know so well where he's going to go, you know where I am, it's about finding a day where we spend a few hours together. That's what we've done in the past."

Formula One's season-opening Australian Grand Prix will go ahead as planned despite coronavirus concerns, the government of Victoria has confirmed.

Ferrari and Alpha Tauri are based in northern Italy, where cases of infection have this week surged to 400.

The global outbreak – which originated in China and caused the postponement of April's race in Shanghai – has prompted speculation about the suitability of staging the opening grands prix, the first of which is scheduled to take place in Melbourne on March 15.

However, Victoria's minister for tourism, sport and major events Martin Pakula said the event will run to plan.

"Melbourne is the only city in the world to host a Formula One race and a grand slam tennis tournament, and we look forward to the grand prix celebrating 25 years at Albert Park on March 15," said Pakula.

F1 will head to Bahrain the following weekend, with the inaugural Vietnam Grand Prix third on the calendar.

 

Chase Carey, the chief executive of F1, has no doubts the events will go ahead despite there being coronavirus cases in the countries.

"The Vietnam Grand Prix will take place on April 5 at Hanoi, and to anticipate another question, we do plan to proceed with the race," he said during a conference call this week.

"I talked to our Vietnamese partners, and I plan to stop in Hanoi on March 16 on my way back to London from Australia, and all systems are a go. 

"Other than China, I guess, again, with a particular focus on the races beginning of the year, they're all going.

"We're heading to Melbourne, heading to Bahrain, heading to Hanoi. Although, to state the obvious, we've got to see what evolves in the coming days."

Charles Leclerc's rise at Ferrari has put Sebastian Vettel in a challenging and difficult situation for the 2020 season, according to Nico Rosberg.

Rosberg, the only man apart from Lewis Hamilton to win a Formula One world championship since the last of Vettel's four titles in 2013, believes his fellow German's struggles pre-date the 2019 campaign.

But the sensational debut Ferrari season from Leclerc has brought the future of Vettel into the spotlight, with his contract having only a year left to run.

Leclerc earned seven pole positions and two race wins last year to finish ahead of his more experienced team-mate, who has just one victory in his last 29 attempts, in the drivers' standings.

Rosberg feels if anyone can bounce back from such a predicament it is a driver of Vettel's calibre, but he acknowledged how tough the situation is for the 32-year-old.

"We must not forget that he also had a very tricky 2018, so it is not just last year, it has been a string of years now," Rosberg, Heineken's 'When You Drive, Never Drink' ambassador, told Stats Perform.

"It's not an easy situation for him because he is such a great driver.

"He is also one of the best of all time, but now he is finding himself in a very challenging situation with an unbelievably fast young team-mate, who is also getting more and more support internally from his team.

"So it is really a difficult one for Sebastian, but if one guy can do it and bounce back from that, then it is him, because he has all the confidence, all the experience, he has the speed."

Rosberg feels one of the most significant storylines to watch this season will be how Ferrari manage the rivalry between their two drivers.

Tension over team strategy developed between them over the course of 2019, culminating in a Brazil collision that caused a double retirement. 

"It is so exciting to see how that is going to play out internally," added Rosberg.

"It is going to be hugely challenging for Ferrari to manage that because last year it was much easier. It was very clear - Sebastian was the number one and Charles was the number-two driver. 

"As soon as that started to be debated internally, that is when the problems started, around Monza. Both will be equal number-ones in the team going into the season and that is going to be super interesting to watch."

Looking ahead to this year's title race, Rosberg - the 2016 world champion - tipped Leclerc and Max Verstappen to challenge strongly, adding: "The biggest threat [to Hamilton] really depends on the cars.

"I believe that Red Bull and Ferrari really might step it up this year and go on level playing terms with Mercedes. That would be amazing, we would be glued to the TV, it would be so cool – and it is possible.

"If that's the case, then the biggest threats - looking at last year - will be Verstappen and Leclerc, but you definitely cannot count out [Valtteri] Bottas and Vettel either."

Rosberg was speaking following the launch of Heineken's 'When You Drive, Never Drink' campaign, for which he has starred in a TV commercial alongside his father, fellow F1 world champion Keke Rosberg.

"It was such a huge pleasure to do the filming with my dad," said Nico Rosberg, who has been a road safety ambassador for several years.

"And then integrated into that we have the total abstinence message to help save lives, because total abstinence is the only way to do it. One drink is already one drink too much [if you are driving].

"The latest campaign conveys a really powerful message that, regardless of whether you’re a professional driver or not, abstinence behind the wheel is the only option."

Fernando Alonso will race for Arrow McLaren SP at the Indianapolis 500 as the two-time former Formula One world champion aims to compete motorsport's triple crown.

Alonso, who won the F1 championship with Renault in 2005 and 2006, made his debut appearance at the Indy 500 in 2017, then returned for a second attempt at glory last year.

The Spaniard finished 24th in his first experience while racing for McLaren Honda Andretti, before failing to qualify in 2019 on behalf of McLaren Racing.

However, Alonso has now joined McLaren's new team as he looks to achieve the famous hat-trick of motorsport's most famous races, having already won the Le Mans 24 Hours and also the Monaco Grand Prix in F1.

He will fill McLaren's third car in the race, which takes place in May, with Patricio O'Ward and Oliver Askew in the first two seats.

"It's one of the most iconic races in the motorsport calendar and I'm extremely happy to be in the month of May again," Alonso told Sky Sports and NBC Sports in a joint interview.

"Last year we had some issues and it was not the race we were expecting, but this year we go again with the aim to do well and to win the race.

"Once you experience the Indy 500 it will remain always in your heart. The fans are amazing, the show is unbelievable and the race itself you know why it's one of the greatest in the calendar."

McLaren confirmed in August last year that they would be returning to full-time IndyCar competition the first time since 1979.

Mercedes' radical 'dual axis steering' system looks set to be banned from Formula One in the 2021 season.

The constructors' champions introduced the new technology - also known by his acronym 'DAS' - at this week's testing session in Barcelona.

Discussions over its eye-catching appearance and effect are set to continue into the 2020 campaign, with Mercedes looking to have developed a new tool to push the team even further forward at least in the short term.

World champion Lewis Hamilton was shown on his car's on-board camera to be adjusting his steering column in practice, pulling it towards him and pushing it away.

That was said to result in small changes to the toe angle of the wheels - their alignment when the steering is set straight - and Mercedes technical director James Allison has said DAS offers drivers "an extra dimension of control".

However, amid a slew of changes to Formula One's rules that will come into effect next year, there are defined restrictions on steering mechanisms.

The 2021 rules state: "The re-alignment of the steered wheels, as defined by the position of the inboard attachment of the relevant suspensions members that remain a fixed distance from each other, must be uniquely defined by a monotonic function of the rotational position of a single steering wheel."

The BBC reported on Friday that Michael Masi, race director of governing body the FIA, confirmed the rule amendment would affect DAS.

Masi is quoted as saying on the BBC Sport website: "We will see what teams can come up with within those boundaries of what the regulations are written for in 2021

Lewis Hamilton revealed he was yet to begin contract talks with Mercedes as the world champion focuses on preparations for the 2020 Formula One season.

The six-time world champion is out of contract at the end of this season, which begins in Australia next month.

But Hamilton, who has been linked with a move to Ferrari, is in no rush to open talks with Mercedes.

"We haven't sat down. I know Toto [Wolff, Mercedes team principal] is keen to, but right now the focus is on trying to make sure I am fit and ready for the season ahead as it ramps up," Hamilton said at pre-season testing on Thursday.

"You want to start on the front foot so it is not something I really get bogged down with at this period of time."

Hamilton has won five championships since joining Mercedes in 2013, including the past three to move within one of Michael Schumacher's record of seven.

The 35-year-old Brit said there would be more to talks than just the rest of his driving career.

"People talk about freedom as if it is a bad thing, but it is not at all. Mercedes have allowed me to be who I want to be rather than keep me constricted and ask me to speak a certain way or dress a certain way," Hamilton said.

"There were question marks over all the different things I do, but everyone can see the results I have had over the last two years. The flexibility helps me to be more engaged and an even better driver than I thought I could be.

"It is now about trying to figure out what the next five-to-10-year plan is, and how the decision I make now will impact the future.

"Does it allow me to put certain things in place so that, when I hang up my helmet, I am able to continue to pursue other interests? That will be in the small print of what we agree and what we will mostly be talking about."

Ryan Newman has been released from hospital less than two days after he was in a serious condition following a horror crash at the Daytona 500.

The Roush Fenway Racing driver was hospitalised after his car ploughed into a wall and caught fire before being hit by another car for a second time on Monday.

Newman's condition was initially described as serious, but not life-threatening and the 42-year-old's team on Tuesday revealed that he was awake and speaking with family and doctors.

There was another positive update on his condition on Wednesday, revealing he "continues great improvement".

Roush Fenway later posted a picture of Newman with his children leaving Halifax Medical Center in Daytona Beach, Florida.

A brief statement from the team simply said: "Ryan Newman has been treated and released from Halifax Medical Center."

World champion Lewis Hamilton showed ominous speed in his Mercedes on day one of testing for the new Formula One season in Barcelona.

The British driver led a Mercedes one-two on the time sheets as Valtteri Bottas was second quickest, while Ferrari's plans were hindered when Sebastian Vettel pulled out of the session through illness.

Hamilton came to Barcelona from Berlin, after being voted a world sportsman of the year at the Laureus Awards, and the six-time F1 drivers' championship winner was swiftly up to pace in the new W11 model.

He clocked a fastest lap of one minute and 16.976 seconds, which put him 0.377secs clear of Bottas and 0.399s ahead of Racing Point's Sergio Perez.

Another title this season would see 35-year-old Hamilton match German great Michael Schumacher's record haul of seven triumphs.

Charles Leclerc was down in 11th place for Ferrari but put in 131 laps in the new SF1000 car as the Monegasque driver went it alone for the Italian team, with Vettel sidelined.

Hamilton completed 94 laps in the afternoon, with Bottas notching up 79 in the morning, but their combined total of 173 laps for Mercedes was almost passed single-handedly by Red Bull's Max Verstappen, who achieved 168 circuits.

Verstappen span off the track twice during the afternoon. Alex Albon will take the wheel of the Red Bull on Thursday.

"It's been a good day and a really good start for all of us, considering we had a long break," said Hamilton. "So to come back and clock in over 170 laps just shows how hard everyone has been working over the winter.

"We will just take it one step at a time, getting good feedback from the car. We have a lot of data to download and analyse and we’ve got to keep pushing on."

The first race of the 2020 season takes place in Melbourne, with the Australian Grand Prix scheduled for March 15.

Ryan Newman is "fully alert and walking" as he continues to show "great improvement" less than two days after he was in a serious condition following a horror crash at the Daytona 500.

The Roush Fenway Racing driver was hospitalised after his car ploughed into a wall and caught fire before being hit by another car for a second time on Monday.

Newman's condition was initially described as serious, but not life-threatening and the 42-year-old's team on Tuesday revealed that he was awake and speaking with family and doctors.

There was another positive update on his condition on Wednesday, revealing he "continues great improvement" at Halifax Medical Center in Daytona Beach, Florida.

A Roush Fenway Racing statement said: "Ryan Newman continues to show great improvement after Monday night’s last-lap accident at Daytona International Speedway.

"The veteran driver is fully alert and walking around Halifax Medical Center. True to his jovial nature, he has also been joking around with staff, friends and family while spending time playing with his two daughters.

"Ryan continues to express his appreciation for the outpouring of support from across the country, and he and his family are grateful for the immense level of support that has been provided by the NASCAR community and beyond."

Ryan Newman is in a serious condition but with non-life threatening injuries after his frightening crash at the Daytona 500 on Monday.

The Roush Fenway Racing driver was hospitalised after being bumped from behind before his car went flying into the wall and flipped, prior to being hit again.

The car caught fire before it was extinguished by track personnel.

In a statement, Newman's team confirmed the 42-year-old was in a serious condition, but with non-life threatening injuries.

"Ryan Newman is being treated at Halifax Medical Center. He is in serious condition, but doctors have indicated his injuries are not life threatening," the statement read.

"We appreciate your thoughts and prayers and ask that you respect the privacy of Ryan and his family during this time.

"We appreciate your patience and cooperation and we will provide more information as it becomes available."

Newman was leading the race, which was won by Denny Hamlin, when the incident occurred.

Ryan Newman was hospitalised after a frightening crash during the Daytona 500 on Monday.

Newman, the Roush Fenway Racing driver, was bumped from behind before his car went flying into the wall and flipped, prior to being hit again.

The car caught fire before it was extinguished by track personnel.

In a brief story posted on its website, NASCAR said Newman was taken to a local hospital.

Newman was leading the race, which was won by Denny Hamlin, when the incident occurred.

Former NASCAR drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Kurt Busch were among those who wrote on Twitter they were praying for Newman.

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi and Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton became the first joint-winners of the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year on Monday.

Messi and Hamilton were level on votes made by former sports legends who are members of the Laureus Academy.

Argentina international Messi inspired Barca to a 26th LaLiga title last season with 36 goals in 34 appearances, form that earned him a record sixth Ballon d'Or.

Mercedes driver Hamilton was crowned F1 world champion for the sixth time in 2019, putting him second only to Michael Schumacher on the all-time list.

Hamilton was in Berlin to collect his award in person, while Messi – the first individual from a team sport to claim the prize – sent a video message.

"I would like to thank the Academy for giving me this recognition. The truth is that this is a very important and special award," said Messi.

"I am honoured to be the first to win this award being a sportsperson coming from a team sport and not an individual sport, which is usually the case. Thank you very much.

"For me it's a huge delight to be part of this award and the first team player to receive it. Of course, I would like to thank my team-mates, my family and the fans who support me. Thanks to them this kind of individual recognition is possible."

The pair collected more votes than fellow contenders Rafael Nadal, Marc Marquez, Tiger Woods and Eliud Kipchoge. 

Gymnast Simone Biles was named Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year having become the most decorated gymnast in world championship history and helped the United States to a fifth team title.

Cross-country skier Oksana Masters was handed the World Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability award.

South Africa men's rugby union side, who won the World Cup in 2019, were selected as the team of the year.

The other major winners were cyclist Egan Bernal (breakthrough), racing driver Sophia Florsch (comeback) and basketball player Dirk Nowitzki (lifetime achievement award).

Sebastian Vettel must rise to the challenge in 2020 to ensure he can prolong his Formula One career, according to David Coulthard.

The Ferrari driver is under pressure going into the new season after being outshone by new team-mate Charles Leclerc last year.

Four-time world champion Vettel last claimed the drivers' championship in 2013, with his Ferrari seat more vulnerable than that of Leclerc, who has signed a new long-term deal.

Coulthard believes the 32-year-old's quality is beyond doubt but fears for his career if he underperforms in 2020.

"He's a class driver, you don't win those championships without being so," Coulthard said to Omnisport about Vettel.

"We have seen in previous years, his last year at Red Bull, he lost a bit of consistency and performance, but he was able to bounce back at Ferrari alongside Kimi Raikkonen. 

"Let's see if he can bounce back this year. It's in his hands. We know Charles is fast, we know he's able to get those qualifying results and race results, but Seb is a four-time world champion. 

"This year is a very important year for him to establish if we will see more of him."

Coulthard is concerned Vettel would not have another realistic option if the Italian team opt not to retain him.

"I just don't see where he could go logically at the level of expectation in terms of salary and what-have-you," added Coulthard.

"Red Bull seem quite set in their programme. McLaren have two young drivers. Mercedes, they don't need him. So, I think it's a little bit like Fernando Alonso, even if they want to race there isn't the opportunity for them." 

Coulthard ended his F1 career at Red Bull and is hoping to see Max Verstappen challenge defending champion Lewis Hamilton for title glory this season, even if the Briton remains the favourite.

On the title race, he said: "Easy money is to say Hamilton at Mercedes but I think it's absolutely possible on paper for the world champion to come from Red Bull, Ferrari or Mercedes. 

"I would love to see Max really challenge for the championship. He's got speed, he's got commitment, he's got a young, devil-may-care attitude. 

"He's a breath of fresh air because he's also very open, very honest, and not kind of aloof and standing off. So I think he would be a great champion.

"Mercedes have done an exceptional job, but we can see that Ferrari have come up over the last couple of years to being real contenders and Red Bull in their new partnership with Honda are getting a few victories.

"Those three teams can be challenging for, certainly race victories, and possibly the championships."

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