Kenzie Ruston joins Ben Kennedy’s NASCAR team

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Emerging NASCAR talent Kenzie Ruston is pairing with another of NASCAR’s potential future stars, Ben Kennedy, at Kennedy’s K&N Pro Series East team in 2014.

Ruston, 22, a member of NASCAR’s “NASCAR Next” initiative for finding and discovering young drivers, made her debut in the series this past season with the Turner Scott Motorsports team. She finished sixth in the series championship with four top-five finishes, with a best finish of third place at Greenville (S.C.) Pickens Speedway in April.

“Jumping into the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East last year was a great experience and I really learned a lot in my first year,” said Ruston, via NASCAR.com. “Having competed against Ben and his team, I’ve seen firsthand the dedication and level of excellence they bring to the track.”

Kennedy, 21, is moving into the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series full-time in 2014 with TSM, but the Ruston signing allows the Ben Kennedy Racing squad to remain in its Daytona Beach shop and keep competing in K&N. Kennedy is the great grandson of NASCAR founder Bill France Sr.

Takuma Sato’s likeness revealed on Borg-Warner Trophy (PHOTOS)

Photos; Walt Kuhn
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INDIANAPOLIS – Rather than the traditional December unveil, this year’s reveal newest likeness added to the Borg-Warner Trophy came Tuesday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum.

Takuma Sato got to see the result of the sculpting done by William Behrends and then turned from wax, clay and ceramic into sterling silver on Tuesday evening, as the winner of the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil saw his face revealed on the trophy.

Sato took the No. 26 Ruoff Home Mortgage Honda for Andretti Autosport to the win in thrilling fashion this year over Helio Castroneves, denying the Brazilian his fourth Indianapolis 500 victory in the process. It atoned for his near-miss in 2012, driving for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, the team he’ll return to in 2018.

It’s been a whirlwind last week-plus for Sato, doing the podium interviews at the Japanese Grand Prix, reflecting on his Indianapolis 500 triumph, then sharing the victory spoils with another Japanese pilot in Yoshihide Muroya, who won the Red Bull Air Race World Championship at Indianapolis this weekend.

Photos of Sato’s face on the most unique trophy in sports are below. This post will be updated following tonight’s full unveil. (All photos: Walt Kuhn)