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The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, abbreviated to NASCAR, is currently referred as the largest sanctioning body of stock car racing in the United States and is in its 65th season. The three largest racing series sanctioned by NASCAR are the Sprint Cup, the Nationwide Series and the Camping World Truck Series. The NASCAR season consists of a series of races held on purpose-built race tracks. The results of each race are combined to determine two annual NASCAR Championships for each series, one for the drivers and one for the manufacturers. NASCAR cars race at high speeds, up to 200 mph (320 km/h). The cars are capable of pulling in excess of five G-forces in some curves. Charlotte, North Carolina is NASCAR's traditional center, where most of the teams are based. However, the sport's scope has expanded significantly in recent years with races being held all over North America.

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Tim Richmond (June 7, 1955 - August 13, 1989) was an American race car driver from Ashland, Ohio. He competed in IndyCar racing before transferring to NASCAR's Winston Cup Series (now Sprint Cup Series). Richmond was the first driver to change from open wheel racing to NASCAR stock cars, which has since become an industry trend. He won the 1980 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year award and had 13 victories during eight NASCAR seasons. Richmond achieved his top NASCAR season in 1986 when he finished third in points. He won seven races that season, more than any other driver on the tour. When he missed the season-opening Daytona 500 in February 1987, media reported that he had pneumonia. The infection most likely resulted from his compromised immune system, which had been weakened by AIDS. The disease would drastically shorten his life. Despite the state of his health, Richmond competed in eight races in 1987, winning two events and one pole position before his final race in August of that year. He attempted a comeback in 1988 before NASCAR banned him for testing positive for a banned substance. Richmond grew up in a wealthy family and lived a debauched lifestyle, earning him the nickname "Hollywood". In describing Richmond's influence in the sport of racing, Lowe's Motor Speedway president Humpy Wheeler said: "We've never had a race driver like Tim in stock car racing. He was almost a James Dean-like character." When Richmond was cast for a bit part in the 1983 movie Stroker Ace, "He fell right in with the group working on the film," said director Hal Needham. Cole Trickle, the main character in the movie Days of Thunder, played by Tom Cruise, was loosely based on Richmond and his interaction with Harry Hyde and Rick Hendrick.

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Did You know?

  • ... that in 2002, Randy and Teri MacDonald were the first brother-sister combination to compete against each other in NASCAR since Ethel and Tim Flock in 1949?
  • ... that Brett Moffitt was the youngest driver ever to win in NASCAR touring series competition, but held that honor for less than a year?
  • ... that Brad Teague was fastest in third-round qualifying for the 1989 Daytona 500, but did not compete in the event?
  • ... that when he was 13, Leonard Wood created a washing machine engine-powered go-kart that reached a top speed of 25 miles per hour (40 km/h)?

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Kyle Busch started on the pole position, and won the race.

The 2010 Crown Royal Presents the Heath Calhoun 400 was a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stock car race held on May 1, 2010 at Richmond International Raceway in Richmond, Virginia. Contested over 400 laps, it was the tenth race of the 2010 Sprint Cup Series season. The race was won by Kyle Busch for the Joe Gibbs Racing team. Jeff Gordon finished second, and Kevin Harvick, who started seventh, clinched third. Pole position driver Kyle Busch maintained the lead after the start of the race. Kyle Busch would eventually lead to the race high of 226 laps. Afterward, Gordon became the leader during the final laps. He remained the leader until Kyle Busch passed him with four laps remaining. Kyle Busch crossed the finish line first to clinch his first win of the season, and his third at Richmond International Raceway. There were six caution flags and twelve lead changes among eight different drivers throughout the course of the race. The result moved Kyle Busch up two spots to third in the Drivers' Championship, 109 points behind of leader Kevin Harvick and ten ahead of Matt Kenseth. Chevrolet maintained its lead in the Manufacturers' Championship, eighteen points ahead of Toyota and thirty ahead of Ford, with twenty-six races remaining in the season.

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Las Vegas Motor Speedway before the NASCAR UAW-Dodge 400 Sprint Cup Series race.
Credit: Dha
Las Vegas Motor Speedway before the NASCAR UAW-Dodge 400 Sprint Cup Series race.

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