Nationwide’s title battles no less intense going into Richmond

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The last NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race before its 2013 Chase for the Sprint Cup is Saturday night at Richmond. Perhaps overlooked are the battles in the Nationwide Series, as both driver and owner championships are tight heading into Friday’s 25th round of the season.

Sam Hornish Jr. currently leads Austin Dillon by 10 points and the two are poised to expand that gap over the other three in the top five, Elliott Sadler, Regan Smith and Justin Allgaier. Those three have fallen to 26, 29, and 47 points back, respectively.

Due to the frequency of Sprint Cup regulars winning Nationwide races though, Hornish has only one win and Dillon none yet this year.

The owner championship sees the No. 54 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota trailing the No. 22 Penske Racing Ford by 11 points. Kyle Busch has won a series-high nine races this year, with Brad Keselowski winning four thus far in the No. 22.

F1 Paddock Pass: United States Grand Prix post-race (VIDEO)

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As Lewis Hamilton took another step towards his fourth Formula 1 World Championship Sunday at the United States Grand Prix at Circuit of The Americas, plenty of other topics of discussion emerged in the wake of Round 17 of the season from Austin.

Hamilton’s win came as his Mercedes AMG Petronas team claimed its fourth consecutive Constructor’s Championship, Scuderia Ferrari came up short once again despite a valiant effort in second and third, and Max Verstappen’s penalty after the race was the major talking point.

Elsewhere Valtteri Bottas struggled again, the Sahara Force India twins continued to pick up points, Carlos Sainz Jr. made a major positive impact in his first start with Renault, Brendon Hartley impressed on debut at Toro Rosso and Romain Grosjean and Haas F1 Team endured a tough weekend on Haas’ home soil.

Check out all the recap from the latest USGP in the latest post-race edition of the NBC Sports Group original digital series Paddock Pass with NBCSN pit reporter and insider Will Buxton, below.