AC/DC’s Brian Johnson rocks out at Hendrick Motorsports

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Hendrick Motorsports had a rather unique visitor earlier this week, as rock supergroup AC/DC frontman Brian Johnson stopped in at the company’s Concord, N.C., campus.

But this wasn’t just a social call for the guy who sings Highway to Hell, Back In Black, You Shook Me All Night Long and so many more of the band’s biggest hits.

No, Johnson was at HMS’ compound as a journalist of sorts.

A noted racing fan and who competes himself in vintage racing events around the world, Johnson was in Charlotte to do some taping for his Discovery Channel TV show “Cars That Rock.”

Johnson interviewed HMS general manager Doug Duchardt for an upcoming segment of the hour-long show, part of a series that began in May 2014.

In Cars That Rock, Johnson not only gets to do things like interview powerful people in motorsports, like Duchardt, but also drives some of the most exotic cars in the world, including Jaguar, McLaren, Lamborghini, Mercedes, Alfa Romeo, Rolls Royce and more.

MORE: Click here for more info on Cars That Rock

That’s not surprising, as Johnson owns his own race team – naturally called “Brian Johnson Racing” – not to mention a number of classic and exotic cars.

“We look for real experts in all our shows and as a notorious speed freak, competing in vintage car races all over the globe, Brian is the perfect man for the job,” Elizabeth McIntyre, vice president of production and development at Discovery Networks, said in a media release.

By the way, Duchardt tweeted to Jimmie Johnson that Brian Johnson “liked his name on (Jimmie’s) car.”

We also heard that on Tuesday, Johnson — the singer, not the NASCAR driver — is rumored to have taken some hot laps across the street at Charlotte Motor Speedway, although we haven’t been able to confirm that.

And what would a story on Brian Johnson the race fan be without a video of Brian Johnson the singer. Check out Johnson and Billy Joel singing “You Shook Me All Night Long” below.

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Valtteri Bottas takes pole position for season-opening Austrian GP

Leonhard Foeger/Pool via Getty Images
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SPIELBERG, Austria — Valtteri Bottas upstaged Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton to take pole position Saturday for the Formula One Austrian GP.

The Finnish driver edged out the world champion by 0.012 seconds to claim the top spot for the season opener at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg. He clenched his fist as he climbed out of his car and shared a hug with Hamilton.

“It’s something special when you push the car to the limit,” said Bottas, who is chasing an eighth career win. “Feels so good. It’s very impressive (from the team).”

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen was third, and Lando Norris gave McLaren a boost by finishing fourth. Verstappen has won the past two years here, including 2019 when he started third behind Hamilton and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.

“It’s going to be interesting quite a bit warmer tomorrow and hopefully this will play to our advantage,” Verstappen said. “Today, Mercedes was on a different level, unfortunately. Last year we were also a little bit off in qualifying so I expect we will be a bit better in the race.”

Bottas had the leading time when drivers embarked on their final laps and beat his own mark before sliding off the track into the gravel.

Hamilton was chasing a record-extending 89th career pole. He was ahead but then dropped off slightly as Bottas secured a 12th career pole.

“Great job by Valtteri. It’s a great start to the season,” Hamilton said. “We show year on year that we continue to be the best team. We’re open-minded … constantly learning from each other and pushing the boundaries.”

Ferrari struggled for speed, with Leclerc nearly one second behind in seventh and Sebastian Vettel failing to make it into the third and final part of qualifying, known as Q3. He starts the race from 11th on the grid.

Vettel is leaving Ferrari at the end of the season with his future in F1 uncertain.

Earlier, Hamilton posted the fastest time in morning practice. The 35-year-old British driver was also quickest in both sessions on Friday.

Midway through third practice, F1 newcomer Nicholas Latifi misjudged the exit of a turn and spun his Williams car into a protective tire wall.