HOMESTEAD, Fla. (AP) Danica Patrick broke down in tears as she announced she will retire from full-time racing next year after running the Daytona 500 and then the Indianapolis 500, closing her career at the storied track that made her famous.
Patrick told The Associated Press it took her many months to come to the realization her career is all but over. Once she accepted it, the idea of ending her career at Indianapolis Motor Speedway popped into her head.
She told her agent, and she’s been working on putting together ”The Danica Double” over the last several weeks.
Patrick would not reveal who she will drive for in either race next year, but Chip Ganassi Racing is the likely ride at Indy. Patrick will not be driving in the Daytona 500 for Stewart-Haas Racing, team co-owner Tony Stewart told AP.
HOMESTEAD, Fla. (AP) – Kyle Busch celebrated one championship already this weekend when driver Christopher Bell captured the Truck Series championship.
It was the first career title for Bell, who turns 23 next month and was the favorite to win the title at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Bell won five races this season driving a Toyota for Kyle Busch Motorsports, and led the series in nearly every statistical category.
He wrapped up a second series driver championship for Busch, who will race for his second Cup title Sunday.
Bell finished second to Chase Briscoe, who won raced to his first victory in the last event for Brad Keselowski Racing. The team is closing after this race, and had a shot to end its run with a title behind Austin Cindric. But Cindric was beaten by Bell for the championship, so the team settled for the race victory.
DENVER (AP) – Broncos general manager John Elway defended his embattled rookie head coach and his staff while laying the blame for Denver’s five-game skid squarely on the shoulders of his underachieving players.
Elway spoke to reporters after a rain-soaked ceremony outside Sports Authority Field commemorating the late Red Miller’s Ring of Fame induction and the Pro Football Hall of Fame induction of Terrell Davis.
These were his first public comments since the skid started with a shocking loss to the previously winless Giants when the Broncos were coming off a bye week. The skid eventually cost quarterback Trevor Siemian his starting job.
Brock Osweiler will make his third start Sunday when the Broncos face the Cincinnati Bengals in a matchup of 3-6 teams fighting to stay relevant.
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) – The NFL is investigating an allegation that Jameis Winston groped a female Uber driver in 2016, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback has denied the allegation on his social media accounts.
The Buccaneers acknowledged the allegation and released a statement saying they are in the ”process of obtaining further information regarding today’s media report. We take these matters seriously and are fully supportive of the investigation that is being conducted by the NFL.”
The NFL also released a statement saying that it has reached out to Uber to request more information.
NEW YORK (AP) – Having never managed or coached at any level, Aaron Boone believes his provenance prepared him to lead the New York Yankees.
Boone became the fourth person to interview for the job that opened when Joe Girardi was let go Oct. 26.
Boone’s grandfather, Ray, was a two-time All-Star infielder from 1948-60. His father, Bob, was a four-time All-Star catcher from 1972-90, then managed Kansas City from 1995-97 and Cincinnati from 2001-03.
Aaron Boone was a big league third baseman from 1997-2009 and was an All-Star in 2003, when New York acquired him from the Reds at the trade deadline. His 11th-inning home run off Boston’s Tim Wakefield won Game 7 of the AL Championship Series for the Yankees, but he tore a knee ligament during a pickup basketball game during the offseason and was released by New York, which replaced him by acquiring Alex Rodriguez.
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) – The Oakland Athletics have hired former San Francisco Giants star Matt Williams as their new third base coach.
The A’s announced Williams will join manager Bob Melvin’s staff. Melvin was a coach in Arizona for two seasons late in Williams’ career with the Diamondbacks.
Williams played 17 years in the majors, beginning with the cross-bay Giants. He also played for Cleveland and Arizona, finishing his career with 378 homers, five All-Star appearances and four Gold Gloves at third base,
Williams then spent five years as a coach with the Diamondbacks before managing Washington for two seasons from 2014-15. He had a 179-145 record and won the NL Manager of the Year award his first season.
ATLANTA (AP) – John Hart left the Atlanta Braves on Friday, less than a week after being stripped of his role as president of baseball operations.
The decision was not unexpected given the hiring of general manager Alex Anthopoulos, who is now in charge of all baseball-related decisions. Hart was bumped to the role of senior adviser, but clearly had no real power.
A former general manager in Cleveland and Texas, the 69-year-old Hart took on a leading role with the Braves at the end of the 2014 season after the firing of general manager Frank Wren. Hart took part in a massive overhaul of the Braves’ roster and farm system, which brought in some top young talent but has yet to produce results on the field. Atlanta has had four straight losing seasons since its last playoff appearance in 2013.
NEW YORK (AP) – Brooklyn Nets guard D’Angelo Russell had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee.
The procedure was performed by Dr. Riley Williams III at the Hospital for Special Surgery. No timetable for his return was announced.
Russell missed time due to knee injuries last season with the Los Angeles Lakers, but this latest injury that occurred during the Nets’ recent road trip was not related.
Russell has played in 12 games for Brooklyn this season with team-leading averages of 20.9 points and 5.7 assists.
Spencer Dinwiddie now takes over as the starting point guard in place of Russell.
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