Biffle blood

Dracula has nothing on Greg Biffle’s thirst for blood

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For the next month or so, don’t be surprised if Greg Biffle starts to act a little like Dracula — a good and well-meaning Dracula, mind you.

No, Biffle wasn’t recently bitten by a bat, became rabid and transformed into a vampire who wants to suck your blood.

But Biffle definitely wants the red stuff that flows through your veins as part of a major drive to raise awareness and collect much needed blood for the Red Cross.

Starting this weekend in Las Vegas and running for the next five races – Bristol, Fontana, Martinsville, Texas and ending at Darlington – NASCAR fans are encouraged to roll up their sleeves and donate — even right at the race track, where Red Cross personnel will be stationed.

Biffle’s No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford will carry the first of two special #ImProud2Give paint schemes at this weekend’s race in Las Vegas. The other paint scheme will be for the conclusion of the blood drive at Darlington.

Fans that want to donate blood are asked to make an online appointment at, which supplies about 40 percent of the blood in the U.S.

The best part of the promotion is that one lucky fan and donor will be chosen from entries to add his or her name to the hood of Biffle’s car at Darlington.

“As a blood donor, I can help save a life,” Biffle said. “I’ve met people across the country who are with us today because of a blood donation. The gift of a blood donation cannot be replaced by anything else in the world, and it means a world of difference to those in need.”

Drac Biffle – it’s got a pretty good ring to it, don’t you think?

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

Sainz uninjured, but to remain in hospital overnight

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Carlos Sainz Jr. will remain in hospital overnight following a terrifying crash during practice for the Russian Grand Prix on Saturday morning.

Sainz slammed into the wall at turn 13 after losing control of his car, pitching in underneath the TecPro barrier at the end of the run-off area.

Medical crews spent 20 minutes extricating Sainz from his car due to the barriers’ placement before he was taken away to hospital for a check-up.

Sainz tweeted a picture to his followers confirming that he was okay, and Toro Rosso has now released a second statement confirming that the Spaniard was fully conscious throughout the crash and is uninjured.

“After arriving at the Sochi Hospital 4, Carlos Sainz, who never lost consciousness, underwent a medical examination, including a full body scan,” the statement reads. “The scan showed that the driver has no injuries.

“However, he will be staying in the hospital overnight as a precautionary measure, which is the normal procedure in these circumstances.

“We will release further information when it is available.”

Sainz tweeted that he was hoping to convince the doctors to release him from hospital early enough so that he could take part in tomorrow’s race, but any steps taken will be with his well-being in mind.

Rosberg charges to Russian GP pole in Sochi

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Nico Rosberg will start tomorrow’s Russian Grand Prix from pole position after topping the timesheets in Saturday’s qualifying session at the Sochi Autodrom.

Rosberg posted a fastest lap time of 1:37.113 to edge out Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton by three-tenths of a second to score pole position in Russia.

Following on from its dominant display in Japan two weeks ago, Mercedes showed few signs of easing up at the front of the field as it stormed to another front-row lock-out.

Having traded fastest lap times throughout the earlier stages of qualifying, Hamilton and Rosberg renewed their battle in Q3 at Sochi, but it was Rosberg who finished on top.

Rosberg drew early blood in Q3 by going three-tenths faster than his teammate on his first run, and when Hamilton locked up late on and opted to pit, pole was safely with the German driver.

Valtteri Bottas finished as the best of the rest in third place, beating the Ferrari duo of Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen who finished fifth and sixth respectively as all of the drivers struggled to improve on their second runs.

Nico Hulkenberg and Force India teammate Sergio Perez will start sixth and seventh, while Romain Grosjean qualified eighth. Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo rounded out the top ten in P9 and P10 respectively.

Home favorite Daniil Kvyat was unable to delight the local fans as he would have liked to in qualifying, dropping out in Q2 by finishing 11th ahead of Felipe Nasr. Pastor Maldonado was also eliminated, finishing 14th, but it was Felipe Massa who was the biggest casualty of the second session, ending up 15th for Williams.

McLaren experienced something of a mixed qualifying session on Saturday as Fernando Alonso was knocked out at the end of Q1. Teammate Jenson Button managed to improve late on to dump the Spaniard out and leave him 16th overall, while the Briton went on to finish 13th in Q2.

Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson also dropped out at the first hurdle alongside the two Manor drivers, while Carlos Sainz Jr. took no part in the session following his practice crash. The Spaniard still hopes to take part in tomorrow’s race, but will remain in hospital overnight.