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MOTOR RACING ROUNDUP

Edwards pads Busch Series lead with easy win

June 10, 2007|From Times Wire Reports

Carl Edwards raced to his fourth NASCAR Busch Series victory of the season Saturday night, easily beating Clint Bowyer in the Federated Auto Parts 300 for the Nextel Cup driver's third consecutive win at Nashville Superspeedway.

Edwards took the lead with 33 laps to go in a Ford and beat Bowyer by 1.656 seconds.

After the race, Edwards -- the runaway leader in the season standings -- executed his signature back flip off his car. Although the season has yet to reach the halfway mark, Edwards entered the race with a seemingly insurmountable 472-point lead over Kevin Harvick, who did not race.

Edwards, who had been practicing earlier Saturday at Pocono International Raceway in Long Pond, Pa., for today's Nextel Cup race, started seventh but nearly missed his qualifying attempt.

He arrived at the track by helicopter, jumped out in his race uniform, signed in and sprinted to his car with about 60 seconds to spare.

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Sam Hornish Jr. led 159 of 228 laps and held off a late charge from Tony Kanaan and Danica Patrick to win the Bombardier Learjet 550 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth -- his Indy Racing League-best 19th career victory. Hornish won by 0.0786 of a second, the closest finish in the IRL this season.

Kanaan, Patrick's teammate with Andretti Green Racing, managed to get through damaged cars and a flyaway tire created by a multi-car crash on the backstretch on Lap 197.

In the chain-reaction crash that followed, Dan Wheldon and Helio Castroneves of Team Penske were knocked out of the race. Hornish maintained the lead on the restart -- and there was mostly a 1-2-3 line to the finish with Kanaan unable to get enough of a push to get past Hornish.

For Patrick, her career-best finish came after all the hype surrounding her postrace confrontation on pit row with Wheldon a week ago.

"Maybe we should make you mad more often," joked Kanaan, her Andretti Green teammate.

Said Patrick: "There's a story, and all of a sudden I have a season-best. It was really just a matter of time I think. We've had fast cars."

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Ryan Newman will start on the pole for today's NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Pocono 500. Denny Hamlin, who will start second, will try join Bobby Allison (1982-83) and Tim Richmond (1986-87) as the only drivers to win three consecutive races at Pocono International Raceway.

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Rookie Lewis Hamilton of McLaren-Mercedes, the first black driver in Formula One history who started his career with five consecutive podium finishes -- a third and four straight seconds -- won the pole for today's Canadian Grand Prix at Montreal.

He had a fast lap of 1 minute 15.707 seconds. Teammate Fernando Alonso qualified second with a lap of 1:16.163.

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Justin Wilson will stay on the pole he won Friday with a fast lap of 58 seconds flat for today's Champ Car World Series Grand Prix of Portland (Ore.).

Rookie Robert Doornbos, the second-fastest qualifier Friday, had the fastest lap in pouring rain Saturday, circling the course in 1:11.629. That kept him in the front row.

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Aaron Staudinger took the lead from Dan DiGiacomo on the 31st lap to win the Auto Club Late Model division's 40-lap feature race at Irwindale Speedway. DiGiacomo started from the pole and led until encountering handling problems, allowing Staudinger to take the lead.

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