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Racing Notebook – Friday, February 28: NASCAR In California, #DoItForGrady

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Tony Stewart Racing

PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Friday’s Racing Notebook has news on NASCAR’s visit to Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California plus Tony Stewart is stepping up to help injured racer Grady Chandler and needs your help!

Alex Bowman Setting NASCAR Cup Series Pace At Auto Club Speedway:

  • Hendrick Motorsports Alex Bowman led both NASCAR Cup Series practice sessions Friday at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.  Bowman’s No. 88 Cincinnati Chevrolet turned a fast lap of 179.439 mph (40.125-seconds) in the first practice session and 176.186 mph (40.764) in the second practice session.  Chip Ganassi Racing’s Kyle Larson was second fastest in the first practice, turning a fast lap of 177.703 mph (40.517) in the No. 42 McDonald’s Chevrolet.  Kurt Busch was fourth fastest in both practice sessions, turning fast laps of 177.703 mph (40.592) and 175.816 mph (40.952) in the No. 1 Monster Energy Camaro.  Qualifying takes place on Saturday at 2:35 p.m. ET.  Bowman also posted the fastest 10-lap average in both practice sessions. Auto Club Practice 1 Cup. Auto Club Final Practice Cup

Noah Gragson and Harrison Burton Lead Xfinity Series Practice Sessions:

  • JR Motorsports Noah Gragson was fastest in the first NASCAR Xfinity Series practice at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.  Gragson turned a fast lap of 177.139 mph (40.646-seconds) in the No. 88 Nationwide Children’s Chevrolet.  Joe Gibbs Racing’s Harrison Burton turned the fastest lap of the second practice with a speed of 174.474 mph (41.267) in the No. 20 Dex Imaging Toyota.  Burton also posted the fastest 10-lap average in the second session.  No driver ran 10-consecutive laps in the first practice session.  Qualifying is scheduled to take place at 1:05 p.m. ET. Auto Club Xfinity Practice 1. Auto Club Xfinity Final Practice.
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Tony Stewart Raising Funds For Injured Racer Grady Chandler:

  • Tony Stewart Store, the official apparel and merchandise supplier of Tony Stewart Racing, Eldora Speedway, and Smoke, is pleased to announce that ten percent of combined sales collected throughout the entire month of March via online store portals and traveling merchandise trailer will be donated directly to Grady Chandler’s recovery fund and family.  In addition, the Tony Stewart Foundation, an organization that provides grant funding to well-qualified organizations serving children who are critically ill or physically disabled; animals at-risk or endangered; and drivers injured in the sport of motor racing, has agreed to match the ten percent gained, which will also be donated directly to Grady Chandler.  Chandler, 19, was injured in a non-wing sprint car accident during a USAC event at Creek County Speedway in Creek County, Oklahoma, on July 26. The Piedmont, Oklahoma-native suffered fractures in many of his vertebrae including his C1, C2, C3, C4 and C5.

Do It For Grady:
Facebook: www.facebook.com/doitforgrady
Twitter: www.twitter.com/chandlerracin

Tony Stewart Store:
Web: www.tonystewartstore.com
Twitter: www.twitter.com/tsrstore
Facebook: www.facebook.com/tonystewartstore

Tony Stewart Foundation:
Web: www.tonystewartfoundation.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/thetonystewartfoundation
Twitter: www.twitter.com/14tsf

IndyCar

Chip Ganassi Racing unveils Alex Palou’s No. 10 DHL Honda

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Photo: Chip Ganassi Racing

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Chip Ganassi Racing unveiled the livery for two-time and reigning NTT INDYCAR SERIES Champion Alex Palou’s DHL Honda on Tuesday.  DHL signed on as the primary sponsor this off-season in a multi-year partnership with the team.

The No. 10 car will carry the familiar yellow of DHL’s branding but adds a splash of red that has been synonymous with the Ganassi team for decades.

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“As everybody can see, this is quite the amazing livery,” said Palou. “The No. 10 DHL Honda looks very aggressive, and it will certainly stand out on the track, which is great. I can’t wait to start the season with a run in this livery at Sebring before we kick things off in St. Pete. It’s looking like the perfect livery to try to defend our title in 2024 and I cannot wait to deliver on-track here soon.”

The NTT INDYCAR SERIES season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg presented by RP Funding takes place March 8-10 on the streets of St. Pete.

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Dirt Racing

Jean Lynch Classic Coming to Lernerville Speedway

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(February 6th, 2024) – Western PA Speedweek and Lernerville Speedway are introducing ‘The Jean Lynch Classic presented by Rustler Sales & Service’ as the cornerstone event of the 2024 Western PA Speedweek. The $4,000 to win, $350 to start event on Friday, May 31st will mark the highest paying Speedweek race since the 2021 reincarnation.

“My family and I can’t thank Tyler Beichner, Lernerville Speedway, and everyone involved with Western PA Speedweek enough for putting this together to honor my grandmother Jean Lynch,” said racer Sye Lynch, Jean’s grandson, in a Facebook post. “Her accomplishments and legacy in the racing world should never be forgotten.  My team and I are working to make this night even more special and memorable for everyone. That’s how “Mrs. Jean” as many called her, would want it.”

Jean Lynch was a pioneer for women in racing with ties to tracks and organizations such as NASCAR, CART, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Indy 500, the All Star Circuit of Champions and Ohio Sprint Speedweek, and much more. However, her love for racing never left the local racing scene as she could be found managing, promoting, and renting out tracks all across the northeast. The pinnacle of Jean’s lifelong love for racing came in 2013 when she was inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame. Lynch is also a member of the Lernerville Speedway Hall of Fame, Pittsburgh Circle Track Hall of Fame, Tri-City Speedway Hall of Fame and DIRT Motorsports Hall of Fame.

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Lynch passed away last year on June 30, 2023.

Rustler Sales and Service is teaming up with Western PA Speedweek to be presenting sponsor of the Jean Lynch Classic. Owned and operated by former racer Brian Steinman, Rustler Sales and Service specializes in heavy truck sales, service and towing across northwestern Pennsylvania. Call (814) 214-7023 or visit rustlersalesandservice.net to find out how Rustler’s can best serve you.

JEAN LYNCH CLASSIC PAYOFF:

  1. $4,000;
  2. $2,000;
  3. $1,500;
  4. $1,000;
  5. $800;
  6. $700;
  7. $600;
  8. $550;
  9. $500;
  10. $450;
  11. $425;
  12. $400;
  13. $375;
  14. $375;
  15. $375;

16-24: $

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Local Racing

Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix Names MINI 2024 Marque Of The Year

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PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – MINI, the iconic British brand, is the 2024 ‘Marque Of The Year’ for the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix.  2024 marks the third time for the brand to receive the honor, which also occurred in 2004 and 2014.

“Excitement is in the air as MINI and MINI of Pittsburgh takes the spotlight as ‘Marque of the Year’, said Morgan McLane, Motoring Advisor at MINI of Pittsburgh.  “Join us as we revitalize the spirit of motoring, embrace the elegance of the past, and set the stage for a future filled with MINI adventures.”

MINIS will be everywhere this summer in Pittsburgh including on-track both weekends and at all of the PVGP car shows throughout race week, July 26 through August 4.

“This honor is a testament to our commitment to excellence and we can’t wait to share this thrilling ride with the entire Pittsburgh community,” said Jason Karpa, Motoring Manager at MINI of Pittsburgh.

The Classic MINI debuted in 1959 as an inexpensive, 4-person “saloon” that didn’t use a lot of gas or take up a lot of space.

MINIS are no stranger to the race track.  In 1961 British racing legend John Cooper added some horsepower, bigger brakes, tuned the suspension a tweak and the Classic MINI Cooper 997 was born.

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John Cooper’s Classic MINI Cooper and Cooper S went on to dominate the 1960’s race scene, winning almost every international competition imaginable, including historic wins at Monte Carlo in 1964, 1965, 1966 and 1967.

2024 Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix Marque Of The Year Poster by Todd Cook.

MINIS will be on the track in 2024 as Mini of Pittsburgh and Vince Longo Jr. team up for the MINI Track Rides program for the 11th year.  Three race-equipped MINI Coopers are custom-wrapped and showcased on the track and at Grand Prix Race Week events.  Longo and his certified racers take riders around the track for an experience and view you can only get from inside a car.

Todd Cook created the 2024 PVGP Poster, which features Bruce Whipple racing his 1962 Austin MINI Cooper S that competes at Schenley Park and Pitt Race. Whipple, from Newton, New Jersey plans to change his race number to 42 signifying the 42nd running of the PVGP to match the poster.

Cook also created a second poster featuring a GT40 in honor of the GT40 60th Reunion the PVGP is hosting July 26-28.

For a complete schedule of events, visit PVGP.org.

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