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NASCAR’s Matt Kenseth Visits Luke AFB, Flies in Fighter Jet

"Speed, teamwork, precision -- and a touch of audacity." Those are a few of the traits shared by NASCAR drivers and Air Force pilots, according to Colonel Tim Strawther, Operations Group Commander with the 56th Fighter Wing at Luke Air Force Base in Glendale, Ariz. The colonel addressed an enthusiastic crowd of airmen and their families who gathered on the tarmac Thursday to meet 2003 NASCAR Cup champion Matt Kenseth.

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Frontstretch Folio: 2007 Auto Club 500 at Fontana

The Nextel Cup Series heads to Fontana this weekend for a star-studded event at the California Speedway. The Auto Club 500 is the second race of the 2007 Nextel Cup season and will be broadcast live on Sunday, February 25th at 3 p.m. ET on FOX, with radio coverage by MRN affiliates nationwide. Competitors will make 250 circuits for 500 miles around the 2-mile D-shaped oval in their quest for the checkered flag.

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Busch Whacked. Again.

It's probably a good thing that the 2007 Daytona 500 finished the way it did; the exciting and controversial finish helped to overshadow what was yet another Nextel Cup Driver Benefit event the day before during the Orbitz 300. Kevin Harvick won that one, too... but the finish was a lot less exciting.

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A Plateful of Trouble

It could have been ugly. We got lucky; but it could have been tragic. The 2007 Daytona 500 was marred with crashes. There was no Big One, just a bunch of Little Ones, but a couple of those looked deceptively bad. Bottom line... there was nothing about those crashes in that race that made it fun to watch.

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That’s History Profile: Ernie Irvan

Irvan was born in Salinas, Calif. on January 13th, 1959. He is the son of Vic and Jo Irvan, who's family moved to California following the Dust Bowls in Oklahoma during the 1930s. Ernie's career had a rather inauspicious start before his days of driving two of the most recognizable cars in motorsports. He began racing go-karts at the tender age of nine years old. He would win the California Karting Championship when he was 15 years old, clearing the way for him to compete in stock cars. So dedicated was Ernie that he missed his high school graduation to race at Riverside, CA. He decided to roll the dice and leave California for NASCAR country with only $700 and some tools.

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Salute To You III… IV… Anyone For V?

Rocky Balboa. The Terminator. The Dismembered Knight from Monte Python. The paperboy from "Better Off Dead" that wants his $2.00. Mark Martin. All five keep getting up and coming back for more punishment. It had seemed that following the fall announcement in 2004 that Mark Martin would be done competing in the Nextel Cup series at the end of 2005, that we had perhaps seen the last of the steely-eyed competitor with his trademark buzz cut, wrinkles, and ready-to-explode temporal vein. Looking more like Clint Eastwood in "Heartbreak Ridge" than the current crop of "Teen-Beat" fresh-faced drivers, Martin along with friend and longtime competitor Rusty Wallace seemed to be heading off into the sunset together, even receiving rocking chairs at one point during their "farewell" tours in 2005.

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In Case You Missed It: February 16-22, 2007

Over at Hendrick Motorsports, Jeff Gordon's yet to be born daughter signed a development deal to race for her Dad in 2025, and NASCAR announced plans to allow teams to add Red Bull energy drinks to their fuel cells. OK...maybe that really didn't happen. But you can check out what really did take place this week in the newest edition of In Case You Missed It.

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Is It Time For Ford To Step Down?

As far back as April of last year, rumors have run rampant that one manufacturer was on the brink of pulling out of NASCAR. Back then, after GM announced a $10.6 billion loss for 2005, many speculated that Chevy would be the one to pull out. Of course, GM vehemently denied such talk, putting to bed the same type of rumors that Ford is now facing with increasing intensity.

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Scanner Static: Broadcasts, Street Cars, And Last Lap Finishes

First, I've heard some say this Daytona 500 was a snoozer for the first 150 laps. While I don't necessarily disagree, I think with this aero package and tire compound, we should have seen it coming. Please, NASCAR, don't make any crazy new alterations to the plate packages, though; you got the finish you wanted in the end, and in terms of safety, cars grinding into a single file parade beats all of them running in one giant pack of 43 cars for three hours.

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Fantasy Picks ‘N’ Pans: 2007 Auto Club 500 at Fontana Edition

While Sunday's race provided a wild, exciting finish, the Daytona 500 wasn't too kind to many people playing fantasy racing. With pre-race favorites like Dale Earnhardt Jr, Tony Stewart, Jimmie Johnson and Kurt Busch all finishing 30th or worse, you wouldn't be alone if you found your team struggling to earn points in week 1. But a new week and a new track are ahead of us and there is plenty of time to make your way back up to the top. So what drivers can help you strike gold in California this weekend and which ones will likely make you go bust? Let's find out in this week's Fantasy Picks N Pans

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