Drivers fuel #NASCARselfie trend during rain delay

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Ever since Ellen DeGeneres hit “tweet” on her Oscar night photo with A-list Hollywood superstars, the “selfie” has become all the rage. Even Formula One got into the act when Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso found a riff on the DeGeneres photo that had F1 drivers in place of the celebrities.

With not much to do during yesterday’s rain delay at Bristol Motor Speedway, NASCAR drivers, teams and fans created the #NASCARselfie – which wound up briefly trending on Twitter in the United States.

Here’s a collection of some of the drivers that took part, and said collection starts off fittingly with NASCAR’s most popular driver and Sprint Cup points leader Dale Earnhardt Jr. along with his No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports team.

Danica Patrick and Stewart-Haas Racing

Austin Dillon and Richard Childress Racing

Parker Kligerman and Swan Racing

Denny Hamlin and Joe Gibbs Racing crew chief Darian Grubb (with Hamlin’s daughter, Taylor)

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

Alex Bowman and BK Racing

If you want to see fans taking part in the trend, NASCAR’s fan-centric Twitter account – @NASCARNation – has plenty of those pictures.

MRTI: Telitz gets creative to help racing career

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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To say that Belardi Auto Racing’s Aaron Telitz has endured a difficult start to the 2018 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season would be an understatement. The Wisconsin native only completed four corners through the first three races – Races 1 and 2 at St. Petersburg, and Race 1 at Barber Motorsports Park – with St. Pete being especially problematic.

He took the pole for Race 1, but a crash during qualifying for Race 2 prevented him from actually starting. What’s more, the damage was so severe that the Belardi team needed a brand new chassis, with Telitz’s Dallara IL-15 damaged beyond repair.

They also had to borrow a car from Carlin for Race 2, but Telitz’s race ended after he got tangled up with Victor Franzoni in Turn 2 on Lap 1.

With the damage bill well into the six figures as a result, Telitz has taken to some unique, or rather, creative ways to raise money in the aftermath to help cover the costs. “Creative,” in this case, meaning Telitz is using his art skills.

An artist in his spare time, Telitz has begun selling his own original paintings to help raise money.

 “I’ve been to a lot of art shows and I see stuff and I go, ‘Holy cow, someone’s going to pay a thousand dollars for that thing?’” Telitz quipped in a story posted on the Milwaukee Journal.

In discussing his artistic abilities, Telitz added, “I’m working at getting better. I’d like to be able to paint some animals, those types of things. I got a request from Alexander Rossi to see if I could paint his dog. Unfortunately I can’t do that yet.”

Further, in a partnership with The Styled Garage, Telitz is selling his own merchandise, and accepting donations, to help his cause.

Telitz finished fourth in Race 2 at Barber on Sunday, and sits seventh in the Indy Lights championship, 59 points behind leader Pato O’Ward.

Follow@KyleMLavigne