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Motorsport: Scott Dixon stutters in qualifying for the Firestone Grand Prix | Instant News


Scott Dixon, PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda’s # 9 driver, stands on the grid before the 104th Indianapolis 500. Photo / Getty Images.

Qualification didn’t pan out for IndyCar series leader Scott Dixon in the final race of the season, but the big picture still looks good as the Kiwi are chasing a sixth title.

Kiwi Dixon qualifies for 11th, while Kiwi Supercars champion Scott McLaughlin is 21st in field 24, for Monday morning’s Firestone Grand Prix in Florida.

Most importantly, the man chasing Dixon, American Josef Newgarden, also had a bad qualifying day, finishing in eighth.

That means that even if Newgarden wins the 100-lap race on the streets of St Petersburg, Dixon will still claim the title if he finishes ninth or better.

There will be a lot of attention on Kiwi star McLaughlin, who is rushing to America to join IndyCar after claiming his third consecutive Supercar title in Australia.

He was fast at first in training but after returning to qualifying said: “I’m disappointed in myself, but that’s how it is.

“I’m pushing out and trying to find boundaries in the fast forward movement. We’ll just come back and try tomorrow.”

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Meanwhile Dixon has seen his 117-point draw lead reduced to 32 but he is well-liked to win the IndyCar title, and even more so after Newgarden has dropped an additional lead position point.

“Josef from 8 … it must have helped us a lot. If they don’t make the top three, we don’t have to do anything,” said Dixon.

Newgarden is frustrated with himself and his car.

“It makes our program a little more difficult for tomorrow but we will still try to win,” he said.

“We can win (titles), we just make it difficult for ourselves.”

Australian Will Power won 62nd pole position – five short of Mario Andretti’s record – for the 14th and final race of the season.

The 14-round temporary course, which covers part of the airport runway, will have up to 20,000 spectators. They are required to wear masks and social distancing, and will be checked for temperature, because of Covid-19.

Racing was postponed and apparently canceled at the start of the year, and Dixon said reaching the IndyCar finish line was a “big win” during the pandemic.

“This is a strange year, a year I will definitely never forget, no one else will actually do it,” he said.

“There will be prominent moments that you will contemplate like walking out of the Petrol Alley on race day and not seeing anyone. Polarization of what is normal.

“We must be grateful for the situation we are in.”

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The workforce looks like contemporary New Zealand, National is still male and pale | Instant News


Jacinda Ardern has a diverse caucus that includes a large number of Maori and women MPs, such as Nanaia Mahuta. Photos / Files

The new Labor caucus is far more representative of contemporary New Zealand than the National, says a Massey University sociologist.

Professor Paul Spoonley said there was a stark difference between the Labor and Green and National and Acting Parties on diversity.

More than half of the 64 MPs from the Labor Party are women, have 15 Maori MPs, one in six are Pasifika and have a good ethnic mix.

The Greens’ 10th Caucus consists of three Maori MPs, seven women, Iranian refugee Golriz Ghaharaman and Latin American Ricardo Menendez.

National has only two Maori MPs – Simon Bridges and Shane Reti – in a 35-member caucus, one Asian MP in Melissa Lee and 11 women. Otherwise, it is mostly European men. This party does not have Pasifika MPs.

National's Parmjeet Parmar is a victim of National's bad luck.  Photo / Doug Sherring
National’s Parmjeet Parmar is a victim of National’s bad luck. Photo / Doug Sherring

National did, however, lose some diversity in its ranks with MPs Kanwalijt Singh Bakshi, Parmjeet Parmar, Alfred Ngaro and Harete Hipango losing their seats.

The 10-member caucus in Act has three Maori lawmakers – David Seymour, Nicole McKee and Karen Chhour – and four women – Brooke van Velden, McKee, Chhour and Toni Severin.

Spoonley, an expert on changing the face of New Zealand society, said national leader Judith Collins made it clear from the start that ethnic and cultural differences were not important to the party in this election.

He said 27 percent of New Zealanders were migrants, and 50 percent were migrants or migrant children.

Since 2013, Spoonley said New Zealand has experienced the highest net migration rates and gained 330,000 people. The two largest groups came from China and India. In the next decade “one if five of us may be Asian”.

The new Green MP Ricardo Menendez is Latin American.  Photos / Files
The new Green MP Ricardo Menendez is Latin American. Photos / Files

Spoonley said Labor’s caucuses reflect the diversity of contemporary New Zealand – on one condition.

“Maybe it could be better in terms of the Chinese and Indian communities – two very large communities,” he said.

With Raymond Huo’s resignation, the Labor Party has only one member of the Chinese parliament with Naisi Chen, two members of the Indian parliament – Priyanca Radhakrishnan and Gaurav Sharma – and Sri Lankan MP Vanushi Walters.

Other ethnic MPs in the Labor caucus include Eritrean refugees Ibrahim Omer and Ayesha Verrall who have Maldivian ties.

Spoonley said it would be interesting to vote to see how large ethnic communities, such as Chinese and Indians, voted and whether they blocked the vote.

National Party MP Melissa Lee.  Photos / Files
National Party MP Melissa Lee. Photos / Files

The Election Commission estimates the turnout at 82.5 percent, the highest turnout since 1999 if confirmed.

As of Sunday morning, nearly 2.4 million votes in New Zealand’s general election had been counted.

The Labor Party has 49.1 percent of the vote and the National 26.8 percent. The Greens have 7.6 percent of the vote, while the Law has 8 percent. New Zealand First is well below the threshold, at 2.7 percent.

About 480,000 special declaration votes were still counted – representing around 17 percent of the total votes.

Nearly 70 percent of the votes were cast in advance – up from 47 percent in 2017.

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Industry restart is fundamental for Italy says Mattarella – UK | Instant News


(ANSA) – ROME, 6 OCT – Restarting the industry is critical for Italy in its quest to recover from the COVID crisis, said President Sergio Mattarella, Tuesday.

“Restarting the industry after the lockdown imposed by the pandemic, while the rest of the world is still facing a health emergency, is very decisive for our ‘country system’,” the president said in a message to the forum “Made in Italy: restart – Releasing the Italian economy in a post- COVID “, organized by the business newspaper Sole 24 Ore and the Financial Times.

The forum looks for ways to boost Italy’s economy after recovering from the pandemic.

It will look at government policies and other steps.

Italy’s GDP is set for double-digit declines this year but will rebound 6% next year according to the government’s latest forecast. (ANSA).

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