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MOTOR RACING ROUNDUP

Rubens Barrichello wins European Grand Prix

The Brawn GP driver takes advantage of a pit-stop error by Lewis Hamilton's McLaren team to claim his first Formula One victory in five years.

August 24, 2009|Associated Press

Brawn GP's Rubens Barrichello won the European Grand Prix at Valencia, Spain, on Sunday to claim his first Formula One victory in five years.

The 37-year-old Brazilian took advantage of a costly pit-stop error by Lewis Hamilton's McLaren team to record the 10th win of his career -- his first since the 2004 Chinese GP -- and boost his championship hopes.

Hamilton finished second ahead of Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen after having started the Valencia street race from pole position.

Jenson Button finished seventh to have his championship lead cut to 18 points over teammate Barrichello. Red Bull's Mark Webber finished ninth and is 20 1/2 points behind Button.

Hamilton, who also finished second at last year's race, looked set for a second straight win after having taken the Hungarian GP. But McLaren's mechanics fumbled when removing tire warmers during his final pit stop, which lasted 13.4 seconds, and the chance was gone.

Barrichello moved clear in front after his second stop and held on to win by 2.3 seconds.

McLaren's Heikki Kovalainen finished fourth after starting second, and Nico Rosberg of Williams rounded out the top five with a seventh straight points finish ahead of Renault's Fernando Alonso.

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NHRA

Bob Tasca took his second funny car title of the season, beating Mike Neff with a pass of 4.23 seconds at the rain-delayed NHRA Toyo Tires Nationals at Mohnton, Pa.

Larry Dixon, Jeg Coughlin and Eddie Krawiec also won their categories, though races were delayed earlier in the week by rain, then by water seeping up onto the track on Sunday. Dixon won in top fuel, Coughlin in pro stock and Krawiec in pro stock motorcycle.

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