Hermie Sadler to promote new wrestling group in Denny Hamlin’s Short Track Showdown

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Hermie Sadler will never be confused with former wrestling greats Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin – not even Rik “Wooooo” Flair.

But the NASCAR analyst for Fox Sports 1 has been a longtime fan of wrestling and will now become somewhat of a decision maker, too.

According to Newsday, Sadler, who used to wrestle race cars on racetracks when he was a driver, has accepted an invitation to be part of a different kind of wrestling as a member of the board of directors of the new Global Force Wrestling series, expected to debut later this summer.

Having been friends with Sadler for two decades, former WWE and TNA star Jeff Jarrett – and if you’re wondering, no, there’s no relation to Dale Jarrett – knew Sadler was such a fan of the rasslin’ game that asking him to join GFW’s board was a no-brainer.

To celebrate and commemorate his involvement, when Sadler takes part and races in Thursday’s Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown at South Boston (Va.) Speedway, his car will carry logos of GFW.

“(I’m) just trying to get the word out about the brand, and let as many people know that there’s another wrestling promotion that’s coming,” Sadler told Newsday.

Not only will he be promoting GFW at South Boston, Sadler will also be celebrating his 45th birthday there, where he and younger brother Elliott cut their racing teeth earlier in their respective racing careers.

Sadler believes in being hands-on, and while it’s likely he won’t climb into the ring, he hopes to eventually expand his involvement with GFW as an announcer and promoter, as he used to do on the TNA circuit.

“What I’d like to do is kind of like what I did with TNA a long time ago, maybe pick a territory and do some live events,” Sadler said.

Expected to be heavily dependent upon TV broadcasts, GFW is working with a heavyweight in that industry, 25/7 Productions, which is known for producing hit shows including “The Biggest Loser.”

Sadler has been a wrestling fan for more than 35 years, and still vividly remembers the first match he ever saw in person: Flair vs. Wahoo McDaniel in his hometown of Emporia, Va., when he was about 7 or 8 years old.

“I’m very, very lucky,” Sadler said about his involvement with GFW. “I get to do what I love [NASCAR] for a living, first of all.

“And then to get involved in another startup wrestling organization that’s going to bring together a lot of people and employ a lot of people and entertain a lot of people. So, I’m excited about that.”

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Here’s what drivers said after Sunday’s INDYCAR race was postponed until Monday

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Here’s what several drenched drivers had to say after Sunday’s Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama was postponed until Monday morning (11:30 a.m. ET, LIVE on NBCSN):

JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 1 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet, 2017 Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama winner, 2018 pole winner): “It’s tough because we have so many people that come out here to watch us. We want to put on a good race. We want to put on a show. So calling the race, running around behind the pace car not running, it’s tough, it’s tough to do that. But I think it was the right thing in the end. When we started the race, the conditions were OK. You could run at that level of rain. Then, it intensified right before that first caution. I think when the caution came out, it got to a point where it was just too much. There was too much puddling and pooling of water on every straightaway. Then the rivers started flowing, high-speed compressions in Turns 1 and 2, fast corner, 12 and 13, fast corner where the river starts to form. Just tough. I mean, look, we love racing in the rain. It’s got nothing to do with not wanting to run in the rain, not being able to do that. It’s that this type of track with this water level was too much to race today. We’ve run here in the rain before, but it intensified to the point where you’re starting to get in a situation where it’s going to take it out of the drivers’ hands. What happened with Will (Power), I don’t think is a driver error. I don’t know how anyone is going to drive hydroplaning on the front straightaway. I think you would have had that for the rest of the track, too. A tough situation. Thanks for the fans that came out and supported us. Hopefully we’ll get some people back tomorrow and we’ll get the show in and put on a great event.”

MATHEUS “MATT” LEIST (No. 4 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet):
“Tough day so far. We had some problems with our radio and fuel alarm, but otherwise the car was alright. It was just too dangerous out there, we couldn’t see anything, so I think they made the right call. Hopefully we’ll have a good race tomorrow.”

WILL POWER (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): “It’s just a real shame for everyone on the Verizon Chevy team. The car was good and we were doing our best out there, but it was really hard to see anything in front of me. The conditions were just so bad. As soon as I got to the frontstraight, the car just came around, and I tried to keep it off the wall, but it was hydroplaning and there was nothing I could do. I feel bad for the team and for the fans in this weather. Just too bad. Hopefully our luck can turn around when we get to Indianapolis.”

TONY KANAAN (No. 14 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet): “Very difficult day for us. In the race we were 13th at the time and we had some electrical issues, so that caused us to pit and we lost a lap. Not the ideal situation, but we don’t give up. There’s still a race tomorrow and we’re going to go for the most points. Anything can happen.”

GRAHAM RAHAL (No. 15 Mi-Jack Honda): “It was a tough beginning, but when we kind of got going it was OK and kind of fun to challenge for a while, but visibility was a major issue today, no doubt. I’m glad that the series postponed it. I would have like to get it in today, but that’s life. We will go racing tomorrow.”

ALEXANDER ROSSI (No. 27 Kerauno / MilitaryToMotorsports.com Honda, Verizon IndyCar Series points leader): “I think definitely the right decision was made to red flag the race. It’s a very difficult position for everyone to be in. It’s never the result that you want, but safety is obviously a priority. I think everyone did a good job considering the conditions of looking out for each other. Not being able to see is not doing anybody any good. It is hard for everyone, but glad that we’re all in one piece and try again later.

TAKUMA SATO (No. 30 Mi-Jack / Panasonic Honda): “As you could see on TV, if you couldn’t see the car, it was probably three times worse in the cockpit on the main straight or any straight. You had to completely trust the guys that they were accelerating. Never the less, I made good progress on the short stint and I made up a few positions.  The car was working well, but also was aquaplaning a lot, too, so I have to respect INDYCAR’s decision for everyone’s safety. Now we really need to concentrate on having a good car for tomorrow. I’m sorry for the fans that sat in rain all day, but thank them for their support.”

RENE BINDER (No. 32 Binderholz tiptop timber Chevrolet): “It was a short day. In the beginning the conditions were not that good, but afterwards the conditions started to improve. The race was stopped, then restarted, and I think the conditions were not too bad at that point. Unfortunately, it was red flagged again and then cancelled for the day. It would have been nice to get halfway, but we will come back and try again tomorrow.”