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Morgan Kane remains atop the Monster Jam Power Rankings

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Ryan Anderson in Son-Uva Grave Digger won the battle at Glendale, Ariz.’s State Farm Stadium, but Morgan Kane and Grave Digger remains atop the Monster Jam Power Rankings following last week’s competitions.

Finishing within one point of earning a perfect score for the night, Anderson defeated Kane in head-to-head competition for the third time in five matchups this year. Winning the freestyle portion of the event, Anderson became the first repeat winner of the season in that session. His near flawless night allowed Anderson to debut at ninth on the Power Rankings chart below.

Kane did enough to hold onto his No. 1 slot with a second-place finish in the racing competition and 33 points for the evening. In the Monster Jam Stadium Series Green tour, he was one of three drivers within a point of each other for the runner-up position. Neil Elliott and the Max-D truck scored 34 points ahead of Kane and Cory Rummell in Megaladon.

Elliott’s Skills Challenge win kept him in contention for the top spot. He remains second in the Power Rankings for the fourth consecutive week.

Colton Eichelberger bounded three positions up the Power Rankings on the strength of winning two of four events at Uniondale, New York, in another Max-D truck. Eichelberger won the obstacle course and timed racing portions of Friday evening’s Triple Threat Series Central competition, the two-wheel skills and donut portion on Saturday afternoon, and closed out the weekend with freestyle victories Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon.

MORE: Adam Anderson and Grave Digger are a family affair for Monster Jam

On the heels of his win in Houston, Adam Anderson kept the momentum alive with a third consecutive overall victory in Tampa, Florida. That race will air Feb. 11 at 10:30 p.m. on NBCSN (click here for streaming).

The highlight of the evening was Anderson’s first racing win at Raymond James Stadium. It didn’t matter that he was almost not a part of the finale after being defeated by Cole Venard, but when the Black Pearl truck was unable to roll to the grid, Anderson’s Grave Digger had the speed to defeat Linsey Weenk and the Lucas Oil Crusader.

The Stadium Series Yellow also witnessed a driver advancing because of attrition. Camden Murphy rolled his Bakugan Draganoid truck after defeating Coty Saucier and Monster Energy. That gave Saucier the berth, where he defeated Rosalee Ramer and Wildflower. Saucier grabbed another 14 points for his Skills Challenge win. A third in the freestyle portion of the event gave him a near-perfect event.

Power Rankings

1 – Morgan Kane-same
2 – Neil Elliott-same
3 – Colton Eichelberger-up 3
4 – Adam Anderson-up 3
5 – Coty Saucier-new
6 – Tyler Menninga-returning
7 – Todd Leduc-down 3
8 – Brandon Vinson-returning
9 – Ryan Anderson-new
10 – Tristan England-down 7

Upcoming TV Schedule (All showings on NBCSN)

Tampa: February 11 (Tuesday); 10:30 p.m.
Indianapolis: February 18 (Tuesday); 4 p.m.
Oakland: February 22 (Saturday); 11:30 p.m.
Miami: March 1 (Sunday); 12 a.m.
Jacksonville: March 9 (Monday); 6 p.m.
Detroit: March 21 (Saturday); 11 p.m.
Las Vegas: March 28 (Saturday); 7 p.m.
Santa Clara: April 11 (Saturday); 7 p.m.
Philadelphia: April 17 (Friday); 2:30 p.m.
Monster Jam World Finals: May 19 (Tuesday); 4 p.m.
Monster Jam World Freestyle: May 20 (Wednesday); 12 a.m.
Monster Jam World Finals: June 20 (Saturday); 2:30 p.m.

Max Verstappen shows speed in Austria; Lewis Hamilton lacking pace

Leonhard Foeger/Pool via Getty Images
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SPIELBERG, Austria — Red Bull driver Max Verstappen posted the fastest time Friday, and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton lacked pace in the second practice session for the Styrian Grand Prix.

Verstappen was 0.043 seconds quicker than Valtteri Bottas – Hamilton’s teammate at Mercedes – and 0.217 ahead of Racing Point driver Sergio Perez.

“The car already feels better than last week, the balance is a lot nicer and we have made a good step,” said Verstappen, who did not finish last Sunday’s season-opening Austrian GP after starting from second.

“It is too early to say how we are looking against Mercedes, but we are quite happy. We have tried a few different directions to understand the car a bit more and we are heading the right way.”

Hamilton was only sixth fastest, about 0.7 seconds slower than Verstappen. Hamilton spent a chunk of time in the garage while his team worked on his car.

“It was quite far off, so there’s a lot of work to do in the background to figure it out,” he said. “Others out there are quick and Valtteri’s obviously got good pace.”

Despite adding a new front wing to its car, struggling Ferrari had a dismal afternoon.

Charles Leclerc was only ninth quickest and 1 second slower than Verstappen, while teammate Sebastian Vettel lagged about 2 seconds behind Verstappen in 16th.

Daniel Ricciardo lost control of his Renault car early into the second session, swerving left off the track and thudding backward into a protective tire wall. He climbed out unharmed, other than a slight limp, but the left rear tire was mangled and the car was lifted off the track by a crane.

Alexander Albon spun twice, the Red Bull driver’s second spin taking him right off the track and into gravel.

Earlier, Perez was fastest in the first practice ahead of Verstappen and Bottas, with Hamilton fourth quickest and Vettel only 10th in sunny conditions.

That session was briefly interrupted when Nicholas Latifi’s Williams car pulled over to the side with a gearbox issue.

The incident brought out yellow flags, forcing drivers to slow down. But McLaren driver Lando Norris overtook Pierre Gasly’s AlphaTauri and got a three-place grid penalty for Sunday’s race.

Norris, 20, finished third at the Austrian GP last weekend, becoming the youngest British driver in F1 history to get on the podium and third youngest in F1.

The upcoming race is changing names from last week but is at the same track. It is surrounded by the Styrian mountains.

A third and final practice will be held on Saturday morning before qualifying in the afternoon, with heavy rain and storms in the forecast.

If third practice and qualifying are washed out, drivers take their grid positions from where they placed in second practice.

“It would definitely suck if we didn’t get to qualify,” said Hamilton, who started fifth and finished fourth last weekend. “It would make it challenging.”

However, qualifying also could be moved to Sunday morning.

“I don’t expect to be on pole position with this (practice) lap,” Verstappen said.