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Indy 500 champ Castroneves becomes a father

December 31, 2009

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ATLANTA  — Three-time Indy 500 winner and former Dancing with the Stars champion Helio Castroneves has a new title: Dad.
Castroneves’ girlfriend, Adriana Henao, gave birth to the couple’s first child, Mikaella Castroneves, on Monday afternoon in Atlanta. The baby girl measured in at 19 inches and seven pounds, three ounces.

In a statement released by Penske Racing, Castroneves says his girlfriend and child were doing well and the baby already has him running around “like crazy.”

The Brazilian became the first foreigner to win Indy three times in May. He was fourth in points in 2009 despite missing the season’s first race while fighting tax evasion charges. Castroneves was acquitted of all but one charge in April, and that was later dropped.

NASCAR NEWS 12-31-09

December 30, 2009

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  • ESPN.com:
    New twist, old friends in 2010 Shootout by Terry Blount;
    Driver of the Decade: Hornish a three-time champ in IndyCar by Tom McKean
  • Alabama Live:
    Alabama Gang legend Red Farmer hospitalized and
    NASCAR’s 10 Biggest Busts of 2009 by Doug Demmons
  • Around the Track Online:
    History Around The Track: 1956 – Glenn “Fireball” Roberts Wins on Titusville (Fla.) Airport Road Course
  • Atlanta NASCAR Examiner:
    Top ten finishes of the decade, part I and
    Top ten finishes of the decade, part II and
    Top ten confrontations of the decade, part 1 and
    Top ten confrontations of the decade, part 2 by Jeremy Dunn
  • All Left Turns:
    What is the Watermill Score? by Dale Watermill
  • Bleacher Report:
    The Drive For Five: Jimmie Johnson Has The Advantage on Jeff Gordon by Kelly Crandall
  • Bump Drafts:
    I Hated Crash Repairs As A NASCAR Mechanic by Patrick Reynolds Listen Now
  • Bud Shootout 2010

    December 30, 2009

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    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — NASCAR announced Wednesday a revision to the 2010 Budweiser Shootout at Daytona format that provides fans with a strong lineup of drivers highlighted by last year’s top performers and a collection of previous winners at the sport’s most-storied race track.

    The 32nd annual season-opening event launches Speedweeks at Daytona on Feb. 6. Green flag is set for 8:10 p.m. ET. The new criteria are based upon the following qualifications, with eligibility based on a driver having competed in the Cup Series within the past two seasons:

    2010 Speedweeks schedule
    • The 12 drivers that qualified for the 2009 Chase
    • Past Cup Series champions
    • Past Budweiser Shootout champions
    • Past Daytona points race winners
    • The reigning rookie of the year Listen Now

    Hatman Belmont Happy with Daytona Test; Announces Associate Sponsor Renewal for 2010…..

    December 27, 2009

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    MOORESVILLE, NC (12-26-09) – After a very successful three-day test at Daytona, Andy Belmont Racing (ABR) is right on track for 2010. Among the 80-plus drivers that tested, Belmont’s Ford was 15th fastest overall in single-car runs.

    “We came to the test with specific goals and accomplished them all,” said Belmont. “We know we have a couple of good cars for the race. It will be great working with Nick (Igdalsky). I don’t claim to be a driving coach, but our driving experience in all levels of racing from dirt to Daytona has helped us in the big picture.”

    If Belmont does not consider himself a coach, the born-and-bred Pennsylvanian has certainly worn a lot of hats over the years. From driver, to crew chief, to car owner, to all of the above, Belmont has been a steady fixture on the ARCA Racing Series presented by RE/MAX and Menards tour since 1994.

    “Actually, I’m wearing a few less hats these days than I used to,” added Belmont. “Being the driver, crew chief, car owner, all of the above, can work if you need it to ….. you know …… to get by, to make ends meet; but I wouldn’t recommend it over the long haul. I’m enjoying my role now more than I ever have. There’s a lot to driving these cars, so to take myself out of that loop so I can concentrate more effectively in other areas is a bonus for me.” Listen Now

    More NASCAR Racing News

    December 27, 2009

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  • Bleacher Report:
    NASCAR Offseason Events Gets Fans In Gear for 2010 by Patti Rodisch;
    From Baby Faces To Baby Daddies: NASCAR Fatherhood Club To Grow In 2010 by Kelly Crandall
  • Bump Drafts:
    My NASCAR Christmas Gift List and
    They Call Him “The King”: Part I by Jim McCoy
  • Caledonian Record:
    Strap In! Thank You Short Track Owners by Biggy Bigelow
  • Charlotte Observer:
    No doubt who’s Top 3: Johnson, Martin, Mayfield by Jim Utter
  • Detroit NASCAR Examiner:
    2009 Sprint Cup season in review: Marcos Ambrose by Josh Lobdell
  • Florida Today:
    Drivers were in tune — and out — in ‘09 by Mark DeCotis
  • FoxSports:
    NASCAR community slows down to help kids by Lee Spencer
  • Insider Racing News:
    We Three Kings of Hendricks Motorsports by Brenda Benedict;
    Johnson’s “Athlete of the Year” Award Revives Age-Old Argument by Rebecca Gladden
  • NASCAR.com:
    Johnson silences critics with historic championship by David Caraviello;
    Runner-up Martin proves age only a number in 2009 by Joe Menzer;
    For the Cup Series’ elite, holiday wishes ring true by Duane Cross;
    Craven win at Darlington in ‘03 top Cup race of decade
  • NASCAR Insiders:
    Your NASCAR Christmas Wish by Journo
  • NASCAR-ista:
    The Twelfth NASCAR Day of Christmas: Twelve Legends Running by Michelle Dawn
  • NASCAR This Week:
    NASCAR Trivia: Star Quiz and
    Body of work and
    Don’t forget Harry Gant by Monte Dutton Listen Now
  • Kenseth, Earnhardt Jr., Gordon Among Drivers To Appear At NASCAR Preseason Thunder Fan Fests On Jan. 15-16

    December 27, 2009

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    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Daytona 500 champions Matt Kenseth, Ryan Newman, Kevin Harvick, Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt Jr. are among the drivers that will appear at NASCAR Preseason Thunder Fan Fests at historic Daytona International Speedway on Friday, Jan. 15 and Saturday, Jan. 16.

    Race fans can get their sneak peek of Speedweeks 2010 with numerous activities with their favorite drivers from the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series in the Sprint FANZONE located in the heart of the “World Center of Racing.”

    Among the activities planned for both days include:

    Interactive fan forums
    Autograph sessions
    Show cars, displays, music
    Online auction
    Blood drive
    Richard Petty Driving Experience
    Drivers currently scheduled to make appearances on Friday, Jan. 15 beginning at 6 p.m. are 2009 Daytona 500 champion Matt Kenseth, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon, Ryan Newman, Mark Martin, Jeff Burton, Joey Logano, Paul Menard, Travis Kvapil and AJ Allmendinger, Listen Now

    2006, 2007 ,2008 ,2009 NASCAR Champion Jimmy Johnson

    December 27, 2009

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    (Left to right) Four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson celebrates each title at Homestead-Miami Speedway following the 2006-2009 seasons. On Monday, Johnson became the race car driver in the 78-year history of the Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year Award to claim the top prize

    As 2010 Approaches Sparks in The Air on Cold Winter Nights

    December 27, 2009

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    Juan Montoya and Tony Stewart have a few things in common. Both made the Chase in 2009, both got on each others nerve in the final race of the season at Homestead and both took votes away from Jimmie Johnson as Cup driver of the year

    Childress crewmember dies of H1N1 complications at 37

    December 27, 2009

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    WELCOME, N.C. — A crewmember for Richard Childress Racing has died of complications from the H1N1 virus.
    Donald “D.J.” Richardson died late Friday after a lengthy hospitalization for acute respiratory distress syndrome. Richardson contracted H1N1 during a Thanksgiving visit to his home state of Massachusetts, and team officials say he had been hospitalized at Health Alliance Hospital in Leominster the entire time.

    The 37-year-old Richardson spent last season as a tire changer on Kevin Harvick’s No. 29 crew.

    He began his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career with Andy Petree Racing in 1999 and had previously worked for Penske Racing, Hendrick Motorsports and Braun Racing.

    Michael Schumacher Returns to Formula One

    December 27, 2009

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    MADRID — Michael Schumacher’s return to Formula One after three years in retirement certainly marks a historic turn in the sport’s history.The question is: Will it enhance or damage the German’s glittering legacy?

    The record seven-time world champion, who agreed Wednesday to drive for Mercedes for at least the 2010 season, is F1’s most successful driver with record numbers in all categories: 91 race wins, 68 pole positions and 76 fastest laps.

    But will his comeback be a success or another example of an over-the-hill athlete clutching at past glory?

    “I never left the racetrack. I kept the motivation and maintained it,” Schumacher said. “I still feel absolutely on the edge. I have to prove it in a real car.”

    Schumacher returns in one of the most competitive eras of F1, with four champions on the starting grid. That includes Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and McLaren teammate and defending champion Jenson Button, who won with Brawn in 2009 during a season where rule changes shook up the pecking order. Listen Now

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