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Commentary and stats on the Koblat Tools 400.

Toyota teams leave engine woes behind

In the first two races of the NASCAR Sprint Cup season, reliability was a huge issue for the engines in the Toyotas of Joe Gibbs Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing.

Figuratively speaking, blown power plants in the Sprint Cup Camrys created more noise than a July 4 fireworks celebration.

Though it might be too early to put those problems in the “solved” category, Toyota Racing Development, which partners with Gibbs to produce the Cup engines, had reason to rejoice on Sunday. Matt Kenseth won the Kobalt Tools 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Kyle Busch ran fourth— with the TRD engines lasting the full 400 miles. “We've had a tough couple of weeks, as everybody knows, and so I really appreciate our partner, Toyota,” team owner Joe Gibbs said after the race. “In tough times, everybody kind of bands together around our place, and we start fighting and we worked our way out of some tough things.


Will compete in the Western Regionals in Greensboro

The Franklin High School Lady Panthers defeated the 3-A Mountain Athletic Conference Champions in the sectionals on Friday. The Enka Sugar Jets fell to the dominating Panthers, 61-49.

The Panthers will travel to Greensboro Thursday, to compete in the Western Regionals against conference rival Tuscola for their fourth meeting this season, with Franklin on the plus side at 2-1 against Tuscola.


Commentary and stats on the Subway Fresh Fit 500.

My Brain on NASCAR: Subway Day at Phoenix

A losing streak that lasted so long even Dale Earnhardt Jr. has won a race since it began was snapped on March 3, when Carl Edwards took the checkered flag at Phoenix International Raceway.

Edwards, driving the No. 99 Subway Ford, led 122 laps on his way to winning the Subway Fresh Fit 500. Giving the command for the drivers to start their engines was actor and new Subway spokesman Brian Baumgartner, who stars as voracious over-eater and general sloth-in-residence Kevin Malone on the terrific NBC sitcom "The Office."


2012-2013 Nantahala Hawks: Pictured in no particular order, Dylan Bennett, Thomas Bedlin, Dylan Cope, Tyler Fuller, Curtis Moore, Brian Gatti, Dustin Bryant, Tanner Rowland and Dylan Shook.2012-2013 Nantahala Lady Hawks: Pictured in no particular order, Amber Owenby, Amber Gearhart, Monika Gregory, Jessica Davis, Skye Raxter, Emily Davis and Jaide Bateman.

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