Friends, family plan to build memorial to honor stock car racing legend Dick Trickle

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Friends and family of Dick Trickle are looking to build a memorial to honor the late stock car racing legend in his hometown of tiny Rudolph, Wis.

Although still in the early planning stages, according to the Wisconsin Rapids Tribune, a group will kick off a fund-raising drive starting in mid-May to raise money for a memorial to Trickle that will likely include a statue, ceramic tiles and photos.

“I think it’s a phenomenal thing they’re doing,” said Trickle’s younger sister, Delores Iwanski. “Dick entertained so many of his fans for so many years.”

Rudolph is a town of just over 400 about 170 miles northwest of Milwaukee, in the center of the state.

“Dick deserves it,” longtime Trickle friend and fellow racer Tom Reffner told the Wisconsin Rapids Tribune. “He did the best of anybody from our area by far, and I just think it’s the right thing to do, and I think it’s the right thing to do for Rudolph itself.”

Trickle died nearly a year ago in Iron Station, N.C., at the age of 71.

“Just for what he gave back to his fans, I think this memorial is well deserved in his honor,” Iwanski said.

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Neuville wins Rally Australia; Ogier takes FIA WRC title

Sebastien Ogier. Photo: Getty Images
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COFFS HARBOUR, Australia (AP) Belgium’s Thierry Neuville won Rally Australia by 22.5 seconds on Sunday as torrential rain added drama to the last day of the last race of the World Rally Championship season.

Neuville entered the final day with an almost 20 second advantage after inheriting the rally lead Saturday when his Hyundai teammate, defending champion Andreas Mikkelsen crashed and was forced to retire for the day.

His lead was halved by Jari-Matti Latvala early Sunday as monsoon-like rain made conditions treacherous on muddy forest stages on the New South Wales coast. The rain stopped on the short Wedding Bells stage where Neuville was almost 5 seconds quicker than his rivals, stretching his lead to 14.7 seconds entering the last stage.

COFFS HARBOUR, AUSTRALIA – NOVEMBER 17: Thierry Neuville of Belgium and Nicolas Gilsoul of Belgium compete in their Hyundai Motorsport WRT Hyundai i20 coupe WRC during Day One of the WRC Australia on November 17, 2017 in COFFS HARBOUR, Australia. (Photo by Massimo Bettiol/Getty Images)

That stage was full of incident. The driver’s door on Neuville’s Hyundai i20 coupe swung open in the middle of the stage and Neuville had to slam it closed as he approached a corner.

Latvala’s Toyota then crashed seconds from the end of the stage, allowing Estonia’s Ott Tanak, in a Ford, to take second place overall and New Zealalnd’s Haydon Paddon, in a Hyundai, to sneak into third.

Sebastian Ogier was fourth after winning the final, power stage but the Frenchman had already clinched his fifth world title before Rally Australia began. Neuville’s win was his fourth of the season, two more than Ogier, and was enough to give him second place in world drivers’ standings for the third time in five years.

Ogier owed his drivers’ title to his consistency: he retired only once and finished no worse than fifth all season.

Neuville admitted the last day was touch and go as the rain made some stages perilous, forcing the cancellation of the second to last stage.

“That was a hell of a ride,” Neuville said. “Really, really tricky conditions.

“I kept the car on the road but it was close sometimes. I knew I could make a difference but I had to be clever. You lose grip, you lose control and the car doesn’t respond to your input.”