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Ryan Newman looking for checkered flag in Atlanta

Ryan Newman Oral-B

This post is presented by Oral-B USA. Follow #OralbUSA to join the conversation. Visit OralbUSA.com for more information

Ryan Newman is looking to continue his hot run of late at this weekend’s AdvoCare 500 in Atlanta.

Rocketman won his first Sprint Cup race of the season last month after leading 45 of 160 laps at The Brickyard to take home the checkered flag. The next week, he started fourth and finished fourth at the GoBowling.com 400 at Pocono. He had consecutive top-15 finishes after that, but he slipped to a 21st-place finish at the Irwin Tools night race in Bristol. The Stewart-Haas driver is currently No. 15 in the Sprint Cup standings.

This weekend, Newman heads to Atlanta to improve upon last year’s DNF at the track. He has captured seven poles at Atlanta Motor Speedway and has raved about the pure speed the track offers. Newman has started in the top 10 in three of his last four races there, and he’s looking for another top pole position on Sunday.

Newman has partnered with Oral-B to promote the Built in the USA campaign. Atlanta is the third stop on Oral-B’s Built in the USA tour, and they will have a booth at the midway over the weekend. If you’re going to be around the track, make sure to stop by the booth to pick up some products and join the fun. Oral-B products are built in the USA, so start your day with the USA by using an Oral-B® Pro Health® All-in-One manual toothbrush.

Follow #OralbUSA to join the conversation and visit OralbUSA.com for more information

Danica Patrick: Tony Stewart off the meds and back to life

Tony StewartTony Stewart is out at least the next month — and likely longer — as he recovers from a broken leg suffered during a crash at Southern Iowa Speedway on Aug. 5. Though Stewart needs to take extensive care of himself while recovering, Danica Patrick makes it sound like her Stewart-Haas Racing boss/teammate is improving.

“I’ve heard he’s kind of getting back in the game, you know,” Patrick said Friday at Michigan International Speedway, per USA Today Sports. “He wants to know everything that’s going on. He wants to be able to hear what we’re doing. He’s off the meds and back to life again.”

Patrick had been communicating with Stewart via text message while he was in the hospital recovering. Stewart-Haas competition director Greg Zipadelli has also been in contact with Stewart and says Smoke is still in a lot of pain. He also says that the recovery process will be slow.

“We’ve been working under the assumption that he’s out for the next month or so, or longer,” Zipadelli said Friday, via ESPN. “He went to the doctor this week, he had a decent visit — no setbacks. … I saw him on Wednesday night, and we spent some time together. … He’s in great spirits. He’s going through a transition period. The next seven to 14 days will tell a lot about how [the leg] heals, whether things take. We’ll update you guys as we can, but it’s going to be a really slow process.”

Austin Dillon is racing in Stewart’s place on the team for the time being. He finished 14th at the Pure Michigan 400 on Sunday and 21st in Saturday’s Nationwide Series race. Nobody can come close to replacing Stewart both for his racing ability and personality around the track.

Danica Patrick dishes on relationship with boyfriend Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

Danica Patrick Ricky Stenhouse JrDanica Patrick and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. are the only couple of their kind. Never before have two racers on NASCAR’s Sprint Cup circuit — to our knowledge — entered into a romantic relationship. One would think that racing against each other on the weekends while going on dinner dates during the week would be complicated, but Patrick and Stenhouse make it sound simple.

For starters, they have figured out how to consolidate space on race weekends. Patrick and Stenhouse, who were described as “inseparable” in a recent feature by USA Today Sports, use one of their motor homes at the track for living and sleeping and the other for Patrick to cook some of her best dishes.

“Does it worry me at all being together so much? No, because we’re worse apart,” Patrick told USA Today. “We’re much better together.

“I mean, we’re apart for at least four hours on Sundays. But I’m still as close as anyone can get to him that whole time.”

Patrick and Stenhouse are both ranked outside the top 20 of the Sprint Cup standings, so there’s no telling what could happen if they were ever battling each other for spots in the top 10 or had to square off in the Chase for the Sprint Cup. Judging by some of the sacrifices they have made for one another, my guess is they would find a way to make it work.

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Danica Patrick ripped by Kyle Petty: She’s not a race car driver

Danica PatrickDanica Patrick was ripped by former NASCAR driver and current commentator Kyle Petty, who says the female sensation is not a race car driver and never will be one.

Petty made his comments during part III of his interview with Matt Clark for NASCAR on Fox/Speed, according to Lucky Dog.

According to Lucky Dog, Petty called Patrick a “marketing machine,” but said he had no problem with her having that role.

“She’s a hot commodity and rightfully so,” Petty said, per Lucky Dog. “In a market where everybody that crawls into a race car on a Sunday afternoon in Cup racing is male; she’s the female. I don’t have a problem with her being a marketing machine – more power to her.”

Petty recognized that Patrick is able to drive fast, but he says there’s a difference between being able to drive fast and being able to drive like a racer.

“She’s not a race car driver. There’s a difference. ‘The King’ (Richard Petty) always had that stupid saying, but it’s true, ‘Lots of drivers can drive fast, but very few drivers can race.’ Danica has been the perfect example of somebody who can qualify better than what she runs.

“She can go fast, but she can’t race. I think she’s come a long way, but she’s still not a race car driver. And I don’t think she’s ever going to be a race car driver.”

Patrick is in her rookie season in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series and currently 27th in the standings. She has one top-10 finish in 16 races. Patrick has also run 60 races in the Nationwide Series and never won a race, though she did record seven top tens.

Petty might be right with his comments, but it’s probably too early to say that Patrick will never improve and get to the level about which Petty is speaking. Patrick has brought a lot of positive attention to the sport, and it’s not like she’s strictly there for marketing. If she couldn’t drive, she wouldn’t be able to finish 13th like she did two weeks ago.

Petty ran 829 Sprint Cup races during his lengthy career. He captured eight checkered flags on the circuit. And now he’s captured the ire of Patrick.

Jason Leffler’s Instagram account a testament to his love for his 5-year-old son

Jason Leffler son Charlie Dean

Jason Leffler died on Wednesday after being involved in a wreck at a dirt car event in Bridgeport, N.J.

The 37-year-old from Long Beach, Calif., raced in the open wheel circuit early in his career and was a mainstay in NASCAR’s Nationwide Series over the past several years, where he won two races. Though he never found success in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup series, Leffler was remembered as a versatile driver.

Indianapolis Motor Speedway called Leffler “one of the most versatile race drivers in America, showing his talent by competing in the Indianapolis 500 and the Brickyard 400 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway during his career.”

I admittedly did not know much about Leffler prior to his death on Wednesday but, after doing some research, one thing immediately stood out: his love for his son.

Leffler’s Instagram account is filled with photo after photo of his 5-year-old son, Charlie Dean, who was clearly the love of his life. It was extremely difficult not to be touched after seeing all the photos of Leffler with his boy. Seriously, check out the account and tried not to get weepy. It was filled with pictures like the one above and the ones below:

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Tony Kanaan gets huge kiss from wife Lauren after winning Indy 500

Tony Kanaan wife kiss

Tony Kanaan finally won the Indy 500 to give himself a win at the race that had always eluded him.

Kanaan ran in the Indy 500 11 previous times without winning. His best previous finish came in 2004 when he finished second as a driver for Andretti Green Racing. He had a third and fourth-place finish the last two years with KV Racing Technology before finally winning the big one on Sunday.

Kanaan passed Ryan Hunter-Reay and broke away from the pack with three laps left to win the race. He won under a yellow flag as Dario Franchitti had crashed in the back of the field.

After winning, Kanaan took off his helmet and signaled for his new wife, Lauren, to come over for a big long kiss. The two got married in March after dating for a few years, so this can be considered a nice wedding present for the family.

“I got a little bit of lucky today,” Kanaan told ABC after the race. “It’s for the fans. It’s for my dad that’s not here. But, mainly, it’s for all you guys.

“I’m speechless. This is it, man. I made it. Finally I’m going to put my ugly face on that trophy! We were known for not winning and now we’re known for winning [the race].”

Kanaan also said he promised his 5-year-old son that he would return home to Brazil to see him after winning the race.

Below are more pictures of Kanaan with wife Lauren, a former volleyball player at DePauw University and current TV host/reporter:

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Indy 500 drivers list their milk preferences for victory lane (Picture)

Helio-Castroneves-milk

If you have ever watched the conclusion of an Indy 500 race and taken in some of the festivities of victory lane, you know that milk is a huge part of the celebration. Drivers pouring milk all over themselves after winning the biggest Indy car race of the year is a tradition that dates back 80 years, but I never appreciated the type of effort that goes into keeping it alive.

Apparently the drivers have a choice in fat content. Check out this photo that ESPN’s Lindsay Czarniak shared on Twitter Sunday morning:

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