People, Places & Racing News

NASCAR DRIVERS HEAD BACK TO THE DIRT AND OTHER RACING NEWS

THE PRELUDE: For the second-consecutive year, The Prelude to the Dream dirt-late-model event, which features many of NASCAR’s best drivers racing on the dirt track at Eldora Speedway in Ohio, will be televised by HBO Pay-Per-View, selling for $24.95. The race is set for June 4.

STILL WANTS TO RACE: While he has sat out the first two races of the IndyCar Series season because he is under contract to Forsythe Racing, which is not going to compete in the series, veteran open-wheel racer Paul Tracy said he wants to continue to race, but will not do so until a settlement is reached with team owner Gerry Forsythe.

SANCTION: USAC will sanction the Little 500 sprint-car race and a new long-distance midget race at Anderson (Ind.) Speedway this year.

DIED: Midget driver Shane Hammond was killed in a violent crash during the Northeastern Midget Association season opener at Thompson (Connecticut) International Speedway. Hammond was 27.

BREAK THROUGH: Nineteen-year-old Graham Rahal won his first IndyCar Series race in his first start Sunday at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. He is the son of three-time CART champion Bobby Rahal.

READY TO ROLL: The Atlantic Championship powered by Mazda has set a revamped 11-race schedule for the 2008 season. It is highlighted by a return to Trois-Rivieres, Quebec after a five-year absence.

BACK ON THE TRACK: 1996 CART champion Jimmy Vasser will return to the seat of a Champ Car, competing in the final event for the series, which will be governed by the Indy Racing League April 20 at Long Beach, Calif.

POWER RANKINGS: Veteran late-model racer Billy Moyer used his ninth victory (in a World of Outlaws Late Model Series event at Farmer City Raceway in Illinois) of the season to remain at the top of the National Speed Sport News Power Rankings, which are published weekly in the 74-year-old motorsports publication.

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