UPDATE: Bobby Labonte’s NASCAR start streak will end

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UPDATE, 6:00 p.m. ET: This weekend’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race will be the first without a Labonte since 1978. Bobby Labonte confirmed on the JTG Daugherty Racing website that he won’t race in Kentucky this Saturday night.

The younger Labonte to Corpus Christi’s “Texas Terry,” the two-time Cup champion, began racing in Cup full-time in 1993. JTG Daugherty has sought Allmendinger’s input and opinion on its car and is providing him another start in that car.

1:00 p.m. ET: One streak came to an end in a good way on Sunday when Martin Truex Jr. snapped a 200-plus race winless streak. One other streak appears set to end this Saturday night in Kentucky: Bobby Labonte’s consecutive starts streak.

The 2000 NASCAR Cup champion isn’t listed in either of the cars he’s driven this year. AJ Allmendinger makes his second start in Labonte’s normal No. 47 JTG Daugherty Racing Toyota, with Austin Dillon taking the reins of the No. 51 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet.

Labonte’s streak of 704 consecutive starts began with the 1993 Daytona 500. He sits only 30th in the points standings this year, without a top-10 finish.

Ricky Rudd holds the all-time consecutive start streak record at 788. Jeff Gordon has one more consecutive start than does Labonte, with 705 entering this weekend’s Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts.

Audi bids farewell to Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich upon retirement

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Audi bid farewell to its iconic head of motorsport, Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, at its end-of-season ‘Race Night’ event in Germany on Friday upon his retirement.

Ullrich took over the reins as Audi’s head of motorsport in 1993 and stayed in the role for 23 years, overseeing its arrival in the prototype class of sports car racing and domination of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Ullrich stepped down from the position at the end of 2016, handing the reins over to ex-Audi DTM chief Dieter Gass, and attended his final racing event with the German marque at its first works Formula E outing in Hong Kong earlier this month.

Ullrich was honored at the Race Night event on Friday and thanked for his efforts in developing Audi into a force within global motorsport.

“In 566 factory-backed commitments during this period he celebrated 209 victories, 13 of them in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, eleven in the 12-hour race at Sebring and nine in the ‘Petit Le Mans’ at Road Atlanta,” a piece on Ullrich’s tenure for Audi’s website reads.

“31 driver titles in super touring car racing, in the DTM and in the sports prototype category are credited to him. 57 campaigners were Audi factory drivers during Wolfgang Ullrich’s era and he was responsible for 18 new developments of racing cars – an impressive tally.”