Firestone becomes new title sponsor for St. Pete GP

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IndyCar’s season-opening event in St. Petersburg, Florida will now be backed by its tire manufacturer, Firestone. A multi-year deal was announced this morning by Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg promoters Green Savoree St. Petersburg.

Firestone also sponsors IndyCar’s summer event at Texas Motor Speedway, the Firestone 600. One month ago, Honda relinquished its sponsorship at St. Pete in a decision that apparently surprised race president Tim Ramsberger. Honda had been the race’s title sponsor since its first running under Indy Racing League/IndyCar sanction in 2005.

In a statement released today, Ramsberger sounded a lot happier.

“Firestone has been a first-rate sponsor of our event for the past nine years, and we can only express gratitude for having a partner who understands the value of our event,” he said. “It speaks volumes about Firestone and what we have built with all of our partners in our wonderful community.”

“Motorsports is an integral part of the Firestone brand marketing efforts and the entitlement sponsorship of the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg aligns perfectly with our plans,” said Bridgestone Americas Motorsports director Lisa Boggs in her own statement.

“Our commitment to the race is a reflection of our longstanding relationship with Green Savoree  and the terrific St. Petersburg community and fans. We are proud to have the Firestone name on this outstanding event.”

The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg is set to open IndyCar’s 2014 calendar on March 28-30, 2014. Tickets for the race will go on sale Dec. 1.

Recapping the 2018 Dakar Rally with “best of” video highlights

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EDITOR’S NOTE: NBCSN will air additional Dakar Rally highlights on Monday at 7 p.m. ET.

As it has done so for four decades, the 40th annual Dakar Rally – the most grueling test of man and machine anywhere – produced a number of surprise finishes and also several disappointments for drivers or riders who were expected to do well in the nearly 5,600-mile trek that began in Peru and continued through Bolivia and ending in Argentina.

NBCSN has aired highlights from all 14 stages (actually 13, because one stage was completely rained out) during the Rally’s two-week run, which concluded Saturday.

Here’s some of the “best of” highlights from the overall Rally highlights, followed by a quick guide that gives you wrapups to all 14 stages.

So, without further adieu, here’s NBCSN’s “best of” the 2018 Dakar Rally:

2018 Dakar Rally: Best of cars

2018 Dakar Rally: Best of bikes

2018 Dakar Rally: Best of trucks

2018 Dakar Rally: Best of quads

Lastly, here’s a day-by-day wrapup of how the Rally played out.

MORE: Dakar Rally daily stages schedule, NBCSN broadcast schedule, list of all competitors.

MORE: Stage 14 overall Rally wrapup

MORE: Stage 13 wrapup

MORE: Stage 12 wrapup

MORE: Stage 11 wrapup

MORE: Stage 10 wrapup

MORE: Stage 9 cancelled due to weather, impassible course conditions

MORE: Stage 8 wrapup

MORE: Stage 7 wrapup

MORE: Stage 6 wrapup

MORE: Stage 5 wrapup

MORE: Stage 4 wrapup

MORE: Stage 3 wrapup

MORE: Stage 2 wrapup

MORE: Stage 1 wrapup