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Drew Bonifant
Spring Cup driver Chase Elliott talks to a crew member prior to qualifying at the Martinsville Speedway in Martinsville, Va., Friday, March 27, 2015. Rain delayed the practice and qualifying for Sunday's STP 500 Sprint Cup race.  (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Motorsports notebook: Elliott’s Sprint Cup debut a reminder that the future is here

Sunday, March 29, 2015

If the thought didn’t occur to you when Kyle Larson and Austin Dillon arrived last year or when Jeff Gordon announced his coming retirement before this year, it should set in when Chase Elliott climbs into his car at Martinsville for today’s STP 500. The youth movement that has been growing in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series isn’t slowing down, and …

NASCAR notebook: Question of Kyle Busch’s Chase eligibility a difficult one for NASCAR

Sunday, March 1, 2015

A broken leg wasn’t the only malady to occur when Kyle Busch careened off the Daytona International Speedway track and into a concrete wall the afternoon before the Daytona 500. The collision and its aftermath left NASCAR itself with a ringing headache, one that isn’t likely to go away too easily in the …

Sprint Cup preview: With Edwards on board, Gibbs set to battle Hendrick as NASCAR’s top power

Sunday, February 22, 2015

The first shots for the 2015 Sprint Cup season were fired well before the calendar flipped to the new year. They date back to August, when the rumors became official and Carl Edwards officially signed with Joe Gibbs Racing, giving the former football coach a glimmering roster of four drivers with viable Chase …

Drew Bonifant: In NASCAR this year, winning isn’t everything – but it helps

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Brad Keselowski was leaving the rest of the field in his impressive wake, but one of the people calling his victory had some reassurance for the drivers behind him. “You don’t always have to get to Victory Lane …

Eyes in the sky invaluable to drivers

Saturday, July 12, 2014

LOUDON – Eddie D’Hondt has heard the dismissals, and the spotter for Jeff Gordon’s famed No. 24 bristles each time. Spotters have one job, people say. “Clear” or “not clear.” That’s the gig. At one point, they were …

Drew Bonifant: Road to the Chase is a road course for Ambrose

Sunday, June 22, 2014

This is the point in the season Marcos Ambrose has been waiting for. From the moment NASCAR announced the change to its Chase for the Sprint Cup format, putting an emphasis on wins rather than accumulated points, the …

Drew Bonifant: Warner’s Antle an emerging talent on national gymnastics scene

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Griffin Antle’s high school career hadn’t even started yet, and his athletic career was at a crossroads. In one direction, Antle had basketball and football, sports that he had played all his life and was good at. On …

Sprint Cup preview: A new Chase headlines a list of points to watch going into 2014

Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Sprint Cup season hadn’t even begun when NASCAR made it clear what the year’s top story would be. The ever-changing sport underwent its biggest makeover in a decade in late January, dumping the Chase for the Cup …

Drew Bonifant: Sorkin thriving in return from hand injury

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

DURHAM – There didn’t seem to be anything unusual about the moment. It’s a play that happens often in hockey: The player takes the puck, dumps it down the ice, takes the ensuing hit, and the play continues. …

Sprint Cup Notebook: In Chase, Gordon shaping up as best of the rest

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Matt Kenseth has been dominant, Jimmie Johnson has been spectacular and Kyle Busch has been a hair behind them each time. Ask anyone, and the Chase for the Sprint Cup is now a three-horse derby. Either Joe Gibbs …

High school notebook: Football coaches recall strangest plays they’ve seen

Monday, September 30, 2013

Football coaches are big on structure. The focus is on preparation, executing a carefully assembled strategy and winning the game before the teams even take the field. Sometimes, however, spontaneity and improvisation manage to slip through that structure. Plays like the one that ended a Washington high school …

Drew Bonifant: Hendrick Motorsports sets sights on Loudon for strong start to Chase

Saturday, August 24, 2013

No Sprint Cup team is a better bet to have one of its drivers holding the championship trophy at the end of the season than Hendrick Motorsports. The powerhouse has the points leader in Jimmie Johnson, as well …

A Sprint Cup Chase without past two champs? It’s looking possible

Sunday, August 11, 2013

The champion is on thin ice. And he’s got company. The Chase for the Cup is mere weeks away, and the collection of drivers looking at missing the cut matches the luster of the sport’s top contenders. If …

Drew Bonifant: Survival of the fittest for Vickers at Camping World RV Sales 301

Sunday, July 14, 2013

To better understand Brian Vickers’s elation yesterday, you have to start with his despair that began in 2010. It was that May that the driver, then with Red Bull Racing, was waking up at night with agonizing pain …

Drew Bonifant: A loss of power for NASCAR

Sunday, May 12, 2013

NASCAR’s seeing the consequences of its month-long power trip. The association had a pair of rule-benders in Penske Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing last month and brought a sledgehammer down on both of them. Suspensions. Fines. Points. Right or wrong, NASCAR was taking a stance, and trying to …