MORE: Starting lineup for Monday’s postponed raceSunday’s race at Talladega was scheduled to start at 3 p.m. ET with a green flag time of 3:24 p.m. ET, but lightning strikes near the track delayed all pre-race operations and forced those on site, including 5,000 fans, to take shelter. The weather never let up from there.Below are the moments that led to NASCAR’s decision to postpone the race.NASCAR race weather updatesMONDAY, JUNE 22: Scattered storms are once again in the forecast ahead of the Geico 500.The race, which is scheduled to begin Monday at 3 p.m. ET, only needs to reach the halfway point at Lap 94 to be considered official.11:40 AM ET @TalladegaSuperS update: Radar shows storms developing across western AL & eastern MS. Will be monitoring w/@NASCAR_WXMAN w/green flag in less than 4 hrs – Marginal risk for severe storms, primary risk: 60+ mph wind gusts pic.twitter.com/nZ0aFCobWO— RaceWeather – Aaron Studwell, Ph.D. (@RaceWeather) June 22, 2020Just talked with @RaceWeather to coordinate the forecast – not optimistic. Odds of RACING 40-50% – WHY?No lights as well as drying time…Widely Sct’d Rain/Storms between 3-7 pm local time. Some storms could be strong to severe. #NASCAR @TalladegaSuperS— Brian Neudorff (@NASCAR_WXMAN) June 22, 2020SUNDAY, JUNE 21: According to weather.com, the chances of rain in the Talladega area were around 60 percent throughout the afternoon and early evening, which is typical for a region in which pop-up storms are common in June.Another issue was lightning in the area. NASCAR at 2:35 p.m. ET announced it had to delay activity at Talladega before the start of the race because of a lightning strike near the track. NASCAR has a policy that states all action must pause for at least 30 minutes for a single lightning strike within eight miles of the facility. More lightning strikes occurred around 3:10 p.m. ET and continued through 4 p.m. ET.Lightning confirmed @TalladegaSuperS ! 😮 #lightning #storm #NASCAR pic.twitter.com/zzP9IzuZqd— Tab Boyd (@Spotter_Tab) June 21, 2020Shortly before 3 p.m. ET, rain started falling at the track. The wind was strong enough that one of the pit road boxes reportedly collapsed under the conditions. Because of the rain, the track was lost around 3:10 p.m. ET, meaning it would need to be dried before the start of the race. At 4:27 p.m. ET, the lightning hold was lifted, and track drying efforts continued despite the threat of another storm cell approaching from the west. A new lightning hold was placed at 4:56 p.m. ET. At 5:02 p.m. ET, NASCAR officials said they had lost the track yet again due to more rain.Going to need some help for the cell to the west to miss. If it hits, would be postponed to Monday. pic.twitter.com/vQ1brakT20— Bob Pockrass (@bobpockrass) June 21, 2020There were two issues with the rain at Talladega when it came to getting Sunday’s race completed on schedule. One was the size of the track; the massive, 2.5-mile oval takes at least an hour and a half to dry, especially in relatively high humidity.The other issue was the fact that Talladega Superspeedway does not have lights. Sunset in the area was predicted to come at 7:58 p.m. local (CT) time. Weather forecasts generally have not been friendly to NASCAR since the sport returned to live racing last month. This is what happens when races that can’t be run in the rain are rescheduled for June, when pop-up storms and rain showers are common, especially in the southeast.That’s the location for the Geico 500 at Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, Ala., where pop-up storms were predicted to threaten the race Sunday throughout the afternoon and early evening. They did just that before the race even had a chance to begin. Eventually, the Geico 500 was postponed to Monday at 3 p.m. ET on Fox.
MORE: Updated 2020 NASCAR Cup Series scheduleAs for pit stall selection for the NASCAR Cup Series races being run without qualifying, it is ordered based on finishing positions from the series’ previous points race, followed by new entries in order of points. That means Brad Keselowski, the winner of last week’s race at New Hampshire, will have the first stall at Michigan.Below is the starting lineup for Saturday’s NASCAR race at Michigan and how it was set.Who won the pole for the NASCAR race at Michigan?The driver who won the first of two races at Michigan last year, Joey Logano, will start on the pole for the first race at Michigan this year. He’ll be joined on the front row by Denny Hamlin.Logano, though, likely will get more help at the start of the race since three Fords are next in the starting order, with Kevin Harvick lining up third, Aric Almirola starting fourth and Brad Keselowski rolling off fifth.Below is the protocol for how the Cup Series field was set at Michigan:Positions 1-12: Random draw from charter teams in those positions in owner pointsPositions 13-24: Random draw from charter teams in those positions in owner pointsPositions 25-36: Random draw from charter teams in those positions in owner pointsPositions 37-40: Open teams in order of owners points NASCAR starting lineup at MichiganSaturday’s Michigan race is the last that will use the old protocol for setting lineups without qualifying sessions this season, as NASCAR is moving to a new formula beginning with the Daytona road course race Aug. 16. The exceptions will be the second legs of doubleheaders like Sunday’s race at Michigan, for which the field will be set by the results of the first leg with the top 20 finishers inverted.The new procedure will replace the random-draw element with a performance-based formula with three metrics — finishing position from the previous race (weighted 50 percent), ranking in team owner points standings (35 percent) and fastest lap from the previous race (15 percent).As for the starting lineup for Saturday’s NASCAR race at Michigan, the draw for positions took place Thursday. Below are the results:Pos.DriverCar No.Team1Joey Logano22Team Penske2Denny Hamlin11Joe Gibbs Racing3Kevin Harvick4Stewart-Haas Racing4Aric Almirola10Stewart-Haas Racing5Brad Keselowski2Team Penske6Alex Bowman88Hendrick Motorsports7Kyle Busch18Joe Gibbs Racing8Chase Elliott9Hendrick Motorsports9Clint Bowyer14Stewart-Haas Racing10Kurt Busch1Chip Ganassi Racing11Ryan Blaney12Team Penske12Martin Truex Jr.19Joe Gibbs Racing13Ryan Newman6Roush Fenway Racing14Tyler Reddick8Richard Childress Racing15Matt DiBenedetto21Wood Brothers Racing16Cole Custer41Stewart-Haas Racing17Jimmie Johnson48Hendrick Motorsports18Austin Dillon3Richard Childress Racing19William Byron24Hendrick Motorsports20Matt Kenseth42Chip Ganassi Racing21Michael McDowell34Front Row Motorsports22Chris Buescher17Roush Fenway Racing23Erik Jones20Joe Gibbs Racing24Bubba Wallace43Richard Petty Motorsports25Quin Houff00StarCom Racing26JJ Yeley27Rick Ware Racing27Brennan Poole15Premium Motorsports28James Davison51Petty Ware Raicng29Christopher Bell95Leavine Family Racing30Reed Sorenson74Spire Motorsports31John Hunter Nemechek38Front Row Motorsports32Ricky Stenhouse Jr.47JTG Daugherty Racing33Garrett Smithley53Rick Ware Racing34Ty Dillon13Germain Racing35Ryan Preece37JTG Daugherty Racing36Corey LaJoie32Go Fas Racing37Daniel Suarez96Gaunt Brothers Racing38Timmy Hill66Motorsports Business Management39Joey Gase7Tommy Baldwin Racing The starting lineup and pole for Saturday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway, the first of a doubleheader this weekend, were set by the procedure that has determined the starting order for almost all Cup Series races in 2020 that have run without prior qualifying sessions amid the coronavirus pandemic.The starting grid for Saturday’s race at Michigan, scheduled to start at 4 p.m. ET and broadcast live on NBCSN, features four Fords in the top five positions as a result of the procedure that utilizes a combination of points standings and a random draw to set the lineup.
MASON CITY — The Cerro Gordo County supervisor representing the First District has announced he’s seeking re-election. Tim Latham is serving his first term on the Board of Supervisors. Latham says in a written statement that he would like to continue the momentum that’s occurring in the area over the next four years. He says he’s worked alongside dedicated county employees to improve infrastructure, limit tax increases, freeze the pay for county supervisors, support county-wide economic development and add to the county’s tax base. Latham’s First District includes roughly the northwestern two-thirds of Mason City, Mason Township south of the Mason City city limits, as well as Bath Township. Last week, fellow supervisor Chris Watts announced he was running for re-election for the District Three seat that includes the southeastern third of Mason City as well as the Portland, Owen and Dougherty townships.
JOHNSTON — Sending $1,200 checks to most every American is part of the stimulus package Congress has devised and Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says those checks will help the overall economy.“It’s a good idea in the sense of stimulating demand and that’s what we’re talking about here,” Goss says. “…Ultimately, it we will get a spring back in the economy and that would be part of it.”Goss does have concerns about the ballooning federal deficit, but he is predicting the U.S. economy will bounce back once the coronavirus-caused closures are lifted. Iowa State University economist Peter Orazem says given economic conditions, policymakers should have been reducing the deficit over the past few years.“But once you get to this particular state where a bunch of firms and a lot of people do not have savings to withstand that problem, I think doing some sort of government transfer payment program to try to help out the population is a very good idea,” Orazem says.According to Orazem, about 22% of the jobs in Iowa are in the service sector — in restaurants, bars, and other hospitality industry businesses.“A lot of firms that are mom-and-pop establishments,” Orazem says. “It’s hard for them to get by with one or two months of no revenue.”Orazem says some other sectors of the economy can easily shift to a work-from-home format and keep people employed. Goss, from Creighton, regularly surveys rural bank managers in the Midwest. He compared the most recent results with surveys taken during the Great Recession in 2008 and 2009.“This is a far bigger hit, but I expect the duration to be shorter,” Goss says. “But I expect the duration to be shorter. We are, in my judgment, likely to see a rebound — perhaps rebound is too strong a word, but see things improve in the third quarter of this year.”Goss says the current economic disruption will have some positive, long-term consequences.“For example, universities are going to begin offering more and more online,” Goss says. “We’ll become cost-effective, which we need to do”And Goss says a shift to online instruction is likely to help rural K-through-12 school districts that are financially-strapped and sparsely-populated.The two economists made their comments on the “Iowa Press” program on Iowa PBS.
Photo showing what the $18,000 in gift cards purchased over the last two weeks looks like. All giftcards have been drained. Photo example of the text communication between victim and prey. MASON CITY — Authorities are warning about a scam that cost a local resident about $18,000. The Mason City Police Department’s Mike McKelvey says a north-central Iowan who banks in Mason City purchased about $18,000 of gift cards in the last two weeks after an unknown subject contacted the resident through text messages and emails. The victim claims he never talked to the person directly or over the phone, but the person wrote that she wanted to be his girlfriend and lives in Nigeria. The resident gave the unknown person his personal bank account information, with the person initiating Automated Clearing House electronic payments to his account. He would then quickly withdraw money before the pending ACH cleared, go purchase gift cards, scratch off the access code information and send photos of the access code information back to the unknown person, who would then drain the cards quickly. McKelvey says many recent victims have seen several thousands of dollars of losses after being contacted through social media and online dating sites.
FORT DODGE — The Iowa Department of Corrections says a prisoner is now charged with murder in the death of another inmate at the Fort Dodge prison.The Department says 44-year-old Eric Hall had been inside the cell of 59-year-old Thomas Daleske shortly before Daleske’s body was found on the evening of June 14th. The medical examiner determined Daleske had been strangled and hit in the head. Hall was questioned and admitted to killing Daleske, and was charged with first-degree murder.Daleske entered the prison in October of 2000 on a 45-year sentence for Warren County charges related to sexual abuse and lascivious acts with a child. Hall was serving time on multiple burglary charges. The spokesman for the Department of Corrections could not go into any more details on what may have led to the attack because of the ongoing legal action.The spokesman says an inmate killing a fellow inmate is rare in Iowa — and it is believed there have been only two other cases in the last ten years.
Cranes’ taskAll Uganda has to do is beat Comoros to advance to their first Nations Cup final since 1978. If Cranes win their final game, they will be one of the two best second placed teams, that make it to Gabon.They set themselves up in this position by stunning Botswana 2-1 in June. 13 group winners and best two runners-up from 11 four-team groups qualify for 2017 Cup of Nations with hosts Gabon Only four other teams, CAR, Tunisia, Mali (already qualified) and Benin can end up with 13 points, but if CAR and Tunisia get the 13 points, they will deny their 2nd placed teams, as that will leave them at 10 and 12 points respectively.Mali and Benin play each other in the final match, so even if both get 13 points, one will be group leader – leaving Uganda as the second team at 13.Teams that have qualified for 2017 Africa Cup of Nations Guinea-Bissau (Group E winners)Morocco (Group F winners)Egypt (Group G winners)Ghana (Group H winners)Algeria (Group J winners)Senegal (Group K winners)Zimbabwe (Group L winners)Cameroon (Group M winners)Mali (Group C winners or runnersup)Groups in contention for two second best qualification placesGroup A Liberia 5 3 1 1 10 4 10Tunisia 5 3 1 1 12 2 10Togo 5 2 2 1 6 4 8Djibouti 5 0 0 5 1 19 0Final gamesTunisia vs LiberiaTogo vs DjiboutiGroup BDR Congo 5 4 0 1 12 5 12C.A.R. 5 3 1 1 8 7 10Angola 5 1 1 3 6 7 4Madagascar 5 0 2 3 4 11 2Final gameDR Congs vs CARGroup CMali 5 4 1 0 8 1 13Benin 5 3 2 0 10 5 11S.Sudan 5 1 0 4 3 11 3E.Guinea 5 0 1 4 2 6 1Final gamesMali vs BeninGroup DB. Faso 5 3 1 1 4 1 10Uganda 5 3 1 1 5 2 10Botswana 5 2 0 3 4 6 6Comoros 5 1 0 4 2 6 3Final gamesUganda vs ComorosBurkina Faso v BotswanaFULL Africa Cup of Nations standings with one qualification round to goGroup A Liberia 5 3 1 1 10 4 10Tunisia 5 3 1 1 12 2 10Togo 5 2 2 1 6 4 8Djibouti 5 0 0 5 1 19 0Group B DR Congo 5 4 0 1 12 5 12C.A.R. 5 3 1 1 8 7 10Angola 5 1 1 3 6 7 4Madagascar 5 0 2 3 4 11 2Group CMali 5 4 1 0 8 1 13 – qualifiedBenin 5 3 2 0 10 5 11S.Sudan 5 1 0 4 3 11 3E.Guinea 5 0 1 4 2 6 1Group DB. Faso 5 3 1 1 4 1 10Uganda 5 3 1 1 5 2 10Botswana 5 2 0 3 4 6 6Comoros 5 1 0 4 2 6 3Group EG.Bissau 5 3 1 1 7 6 10 – qualifiedCongo 5 1 3 1 8 7 6Zambia 5 1 3 1 6 6 6Kenya 5 1 1 3 4 6 4Group FMorocco 5 4 1 0 8 1 13 – qualifiedC. Verde 5 3 0 2 11 6 9Libya 5 1 1 3 7 6 4Sao Tome 5 1 0 4 4 17 3Group GEgypt 4 3 1 0 7 1 10 – qualifiedNigeria 3 0 2 1 1 2 2Tanzania 3 0 1 2 0 5 1Note: Chad withdrew after matchday 3 for financial reasonsGroup HGhana 5 4 1 0 13 2 13 – qualifiedRwanda 5 2 0 3 8 5 6Mauritius 5 2 0 3 3 14 6Mozambique 5 1 1 3 4 7 4Group II.Coast 3 1 2 0 2 1 5S.Leone 3 1 1 1 1 1 4Sudan 4 1 1 2 2 3 4Group JAlgeria 5 4 1 0 19 5 13 – qualifiedEthiopia 5 2 2 1 9 13 8Seychelles 5 1 1 3 4 9 4Lesotho 5 1 0 4 5 10 3Group KSenegal 5 5 0 0 11 2 15 – qualifiedBurundi 5 2 0 3 7 9 6Namibia 5 2 0 3 5 7 6Niger 5 1 0 4 2 7 3Group LZimbabwe 5 3 2 0 11 3 11 – qualifiedSwaziland 5 2 2 1 6 8 8Guinea 5 1 2 3 4 5 5Malawi 5 0 2 3 4 9 2Group MCameroon 5 3 2 0 5 2 11 – qualifiedMauritania 5 2 1 2 5 4 7S. Africa 5 1 3 1 7 5 6Gambia 5 0 2 3 1 7 2Note: 13 group winners and best two runners-up from 11 four-team groups qualify for 2017 Cup of Nations with hosts Gabon. Cranes captain Massa walks off the pitch at half time. The game ended 0-0. PHOTOS via KCCA & FUFAInternational friendlyResultUganda 0 Kenya 0Cranes and Harambee Stars played a cautious game for most part Tuesday, with both sides settling for a goalless draw at Mandela National Stadium Namboole.Kenya’s Harambee stars were led by England-based midfielder Victor Wanyama and had their best efforts in the second half.Geoffrey Massa captained the Uganda Cranes, but despite several changes to the striking line up later in the game, failed to create clear cut chances.Cranes have four days to improve their creativity going forward, as a similar result on Sunday at Comoros would be a disaster. Goals and a win is what the country will push the Cranes for on Sunday, and is what is needed to make their first Nations Cup final since 1978. Starting Uganda XI: Salim Jamal Magoola, Nicholas Wadada, Godfrey Walusimbi, Murushid Jjuuko, Isaac Isinde, Hassan Wasswa Mawanda, Moses Oloya, Aucho Khalid, Emmanuel Arnold Okwi, Yunus Sentamu, Geofrey Massa (Captain)Subs: Miya, Ochaya, Kizito, Geofrey Sserunkuma, Tonny Mawejje, Edrisa LubegaStarting Kenya Stars XI: Bonifance Olouch (G.K), David Owino, Brian Mandela, David Ochieng, Eric Ouma, Victor Wanyama, Anthony Akumu, Eric Johana, Francis Kahata, Ayub Timbe, Jesse WereSubs: David Okello, Abdul Omar, John Kipkemboi, Ismail Gonza, Michael Olunga, Mark Maxwatta, John Ayunga. Share on: WhatsApp
– Atletico impress –Earlier, Diego Costa was an interested spectator as Atletico Madrid leapfrogged Sevilla into second thanks to goals from Yannick Carrasco and Antoine Griezmann in a 2-0 win at the Wanda Metropolitano.Costa won’t be able to feature until January after completing his prolonged return to the club from Chelsea for a reported club record fee of 55 million euros ($66 million), plus 10 million euros in add-ons.“We are happy that a player of his stature wants to come to Atletico Madrid,” Atletico boss Diego Simeone said of Costa’s return. Filipe Luis smashed the underside of the bar with Atletico’s best effort of a first half short on clear-cut chances.But it took less than a minute of the second period to break the deadlock when Carrasco showed great awareness and pace to latch onto a short back pass from Steven N’Zonzi to beat Sergio Rico to the ball, round the keeper and slot into an empty net.Griezmann then made the game safe 20 minutes from time as the French international won a tackle inside the Sevilla box before lifting himself off the floor to receive Luis’s pass and drill through Rico’s legs. Madrid, Spain | AFP | Barcelona maintained their perfect start to La Liga with a sixth straight win as Luis Suarez and two own goals secured a 3-0 win at Girona in a match laced with political tension on Saturday.Real Madrid remain seven points behind Barca thanks to Dani Ceballos’s double on his full debut to bounce back from a shock midweek defeat by Real Betis with a 2-1 win at Alaves on Saturday to move up to fourth.Girona were hosting Barca in a Catalan derby for the first time in the top flight, but a one-sided game on the field was marked by persistent chants in favour of independence for Catalonia.Catalonia’s pro-separatist president Carles Puigdemont was in attendance, whilst the pro-independence Estelada flag was waved by sections of both supports.On the field there was much less controversy as Barca were rarely troubled after Aday Benitez turned Jordi Alba’s wayward shot into his own net after just 17 minutes.Another own goal extended their advantage three minutes after half-time when goalkeeper Gorka Iraizoz was fooled by Suarez’s dummy from Aleix Vidal’s cross.And Suarez rounded off the scoring himself with just his second goal of the season by whipping the ball into Iraizoz’s near post from Sergi Roberto’s pass over the top. – Wasteful Madrid –At Mendizorroza, Madrid were once again wasteful in front of goal, but still sneaked by an Alaves side that remain without a point after six games.“Today we needed the three points. We are not in brilliant form, but for sure we will play better on other days,” said Real boss Zinedine Zidane.Ceballos was one of three changes made to the side that lost to Betis by Zidane as Luka Modric and Gareth Bale were left on the bench ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League trip to Borussia Dortmund.And the Spanish under-21 international settled Madrid’s nerves after just 10 minutes as he caught Fernando Pacheco flat-footed.Alaves did register their first goal of the season five minutes before half-time when Manu Garcia met Munir El Haddadi’s cross flush to power a header into the top corner.Madrid retook the lead just three minutes later, though, as Ceballos pounced on a poor punch from Pacheco to fire into the bottom corner.Real should have ensured a far more comfortable afternoon after the break as Pacheco made a great save to deny Isco, Cristiano Ronaldo struck the woodwork twice and Sergio Ramos blazed over with the goal at his mercy. Yet, Alaves could also have snatched a first point of the season as Alfonso Pedraza’s deflected effort hit the bar before Pedraza struck the post when clean through on goal.“When you go away having only scored two goals for the chances we had it isn’t a lot,” added Zidane. Share on: WhatsApp
The trio were eligible because their parents are Tunisian and officials reacted to criticism by saying “they were casting their net wide to ensure all the conditions for (World Cup) success”.The clash of two Russia-bound teams was decided by a Milad Mohammadi own-goal after 71 minutes.Senegal started with an experimental team that lacked star attacker Sadio Mane and had to come from behind to draw 1-1 with Uzbekistan in Moroccan city Casablanca.Otabek Shukurov converted a first half penalty and Moussa Konate equalised midway through the second half after slick passing gave him a close-range opportunity.In friendlies not involving African qualifiers for the World Cup, Mali drew 1-1 with Japan in Belgian city Liege and Gambia were held 1-1 at home by the Central African Republic.Abdoulaye Diaby scored off a late first half penalty for the Malians, who were deprived of victory by a Shoya Nakajima goal five minutes into stoppage time.Gambia protested in vain that the Central African Republic leveller by Foxi Kethevoama 15 minutes from time entered the net via the side netting.Assan Ceesay put the Gambians ahead just before the hour in Bakau, firing a rebound into the net after a penalty had been parried.A further eight friendlies involving African teams are scheduled for Saturday, including the Ivory Coast against Togo in France and Zambia at home to South Africa.Share on: WhatsApp Johannesburg, South Africa | AFP | Chelsea winger Victor Moses won and converted a harshly awarded penalty to give Nigeria a surprise 1-0 win in Poland on Friday in a World Cup warm-up.Moses fell after the merest of touches before calmly stroking the ball into the corner of the net as Polish goalkeeper Bartosz Bialkowski barely moved in Wroclaw.While friendly results are often misleading, Nigerian confidence will be boosted by defeating a team ranked sixth in the world, 46 places above the west Africans.It was the second notable friendly scalp for the ‘Super Eagles’ after a 4-2 triumph over 2014 World Cup runners-up Argentina last year.Nigeria face the South Americans again during in the group stage in Russia, along with Croatia and Iceland.Polish star Robert Lewandowski was foiled by the woodwork after eight minutes and had a close-range shot blocked by young goalkeeper Francis Uzoho in the second half.Morocco were another World Cup qualifier to win in Europe with Khalid Boutaib netting the decisive goal on 40 minutes in a 2-1 win over Serbia in Italian city Turin.A Hakim Ziyech penalty put the ‘Atlas Lions’ ahead but Dusan Tadic equalised for Serbia, who haven’t qualified for Russia.Tunisia gave first caps to three France-born players — defenders Ellyes Skhiri and Yohan Benalouane, and midfielder Seif-Eddine Khaoui — as they beat Iran 1-0 in Rades.
FILE PHOTO: Sebastian VettelMelbourne, Australia | AFP | Sebastian Vettel said Wednesday that Ferrari have “tried to turn the page” after being dominated by Mercedes in 2018 and their new car “feels good” ahead of the season-opening Australian Grand Prix.The German four-time world champion was speaking as the new Formula One season officially launched with all 20 drivers taking part in a first-of-its-kind public meet-and-greet with fans in the heart of Melbourne.“For the whole team we have tried to turn the page,” Vettel told the thousands of fans who turned up for a glimpse of their heroes in the city’s Federation Square.“We had some weaknesses here and there last year and we have tried to fix those and do much better,” he added after the drivers arrived by boat on the Yarra River, signed autographs and posed for pictures with the event live streamed on Formula One’s social media channels.“The team is on track and the car feels good,” he said of his Ferrari, which was fastest in pre-season testing and is the bookmakers’ favourite going into Sunday’s race.Sports-mad Melbourne has hosted the season-opening Grand Prix every year, bar two, since 1996.“I love it here. There’s a great energy and it gets better through the week,” said Mercedes’ five-time world champion Lewis Hamilton, who was beaten by Vettel to the chequered flag at the Albert Park circuit last year. After losing out to the German again in the second race of the season in Bahrain, the Englishman roared back to sweep to the 2018 drivers’ championship by winning 11 of the remaining 19 grands prix.The 2019 calendar features a gruelling 21 races, with the sport celebrating its 1,000th Grand Prix later in the year in China.The new launch event was a chance to interact with fans, said Formula One’s commercial manager Sean Bratches.“The passion, knowledge and enthusiasm of the Melbourne crowd deserved a special thanks and this is why we decided to organise the first-ever season launch event in the history of the sport,” he said.“It’s vital that we put them at the heart of everything we do, and this event provides us with a platform to engage with fans not just locally but also globally.”Share on: WhatsApp
Kampala, Uganda | XINHUA | Zinedine Zidane on Saturday appeared to put a time limit on his second term as coach of Real Madrid as he spoke to the press.It is only two years since Zidane resigned as Real Madrid coach only to return towards the end of last season after the dismissals of Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari, but speaking in his press conference ahead of Sunday’s game away to Espanyol, Zidane implied he may not be around for too long.“I don’t know how long I will train Real Madrid, I haven’t got anything in mind,” he replied to a question over how long he would be at the club.“In my mind, I have always been a footballer – I was a player for almost 18 years and I said I’d never be a coach, although now I am. It wears you out a lot and we will see how long I continue, but I’m sure it won’t be 20 years,” he said.He was asked if he thought he was a better coach than a player and replied, “No way! I was a better player, but I am happy with what I have done and also that I finished my playing career here (at Real Madrid)”. Real look to defend their league lead away to bottom of the table Espanyol, who on Saturday sacked Abelardo Fernandez as first team coach – the third coach the club have sacked this season.“I don’t have much to say about that. I don’t know if that will help us or not, but I am very sorry for Abelardo,” said Zidane, who added that “Espanyol need points and they will try and make it difficult for us. This is another final for us and we are going to have to be at our best and also to keep our concentration,” commented the Madrid coach.******XINHUAShare on: WhatsApp
A former high school cheerleader accused of killing her newborn baby was found not guilty of all murder-related charges.Brooke ‘Skylar’ Richardson was found not guilty of aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter and child endangerment in the case, which has gone on for more than two years, since the remains of her newborn daughter, Annabelle, were found buried in her Ohio backyard.On Friday, she was found guilty of abuse of a corpse in connection with the death of her newborn daughter and sentenced to three years of basic supervision.Richardson, now 20, will serve not serve any more jail time.Despite the verdict, the judge told Richardson he believed she is responsible for the death of her baby.She spoke out in the court for the first time saying, “she is forever sorry.”It is the conclusion of what her attorneys called a “nightmare” tabloid saga for the teen with gruesome details of the case including recanted allegations that Richardson burned the baby’s corpse.Immediately after being acquitted of murder, Richardson was rushed to the hospital for treatment for an eating disorder.According to her attorneys, she weighs only 89 pounds and is losing her hair.Richardson’s lawyers argued for her release following the verdict so she could get immediate care.Baby Annabelle will finally be laid to rest a Richardson family plot where both families can visit.
The number of deaths linked to the novel coronavirus continue to increase nationwide. Especially in New York.According to the state report, the number of deaths due to coronavirus increased by 799 in the state of New York on Thursday, marking the third straight day of record COVID-19 deaths in the state.The death toll linked to the disease now stands at 7,067.New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the state saw an increase of 200 COVID-19 hospitalizations Thursday — the lowest since the virus began spreading in the state. At least 18,279 people remain hospitalized with the virus in the state.Cuomo also urged people to continue social distancing.
Instagram will ban all content that promotes conversion therapy after activists called on it to block providers form advertising their services online.The social media platform, which is owned by Facebook, told CNN on Friday about expanding its existing policies on hate speech worldwide to include posts that advertise or promote the practice.Conversion therapy is a pseudo-scientific process that claims to change a person’s sexuality. It is condemned as harmful by medical associations. Studies show that those subjected to it, or who choose to undergo it, are put at a greater risk of depression and suicide.Earlier this year, Instagram banned advertisements for the process. Now, it will also stop recommending content related to conversion therapy, such as testimonials to its efficacy or posts in praise of or in support of the practice, except those in a legislative context.A number of US states have banned conversion therapy, and Germany became one of the first major countries to outlaw it for minors in May.In the United Kingdom, a total ban promised by Theresa May in mid-2018 has yet to materialize.Facebook and Twitter did not immediately respond to questions about their policies.
The health director for Palm Beach County said the large gatherings in the city have been the cause for a spike in coronavirus cases.Dr. Alina Alonso, the health director for Palm Beach County, said there have been some large gatherings in western communities and other parts of Palm Beach County that are contributing to the spread of the virus.“In the areas of the Lake Worth corridor where there is a significant amount of parties resulting from birthdays, weddings, get-together barbecues, whatever you have that brings folks together,” Alonso said. “We see that after these events, we have spikes in the number of cases.”However, Alonso also said that the county’s daily lab positivity rate is going down in Palm Beach County, and she added that’s a sign we’re going in the right direction because it indicates how much virus is in the community.Alonso said masks and social distancing are working to slow the spread of the virus.According to the latest numbers from the Florida Department of Health, there are 34,929 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Palm Beach County, including 861 deaths.
A Staffordshire club is tackling one of the biggest issues facing golf – by advising its players on a new scheme to help them get a move on! Slow play is often cited as a reason for not enjoying a round of golf, despite the sport’s many health and social benefits. Now Lichfield Golf and Country Club has launched a campaign aimed at cutting the amount of time it takes for the average four-mile walk associated with 18 holes of golf. ‘Ready Golf’ sets down a series of guidelines to help players speed up their play without detracting from the pleasure of their round. At its core is the principle that each player, within a group, hits their shot as soon as they are ready and it is safe to do so. Simon Joyce, Lichfield’s Director of Golf (pictured), says: “This initiative allows us to keep play moving and also keep the enjoyment of play high. It highlights the slower players, giving our marshals a clearer indication of who to approach out on the course. “Players, of course, must still prescribe to the Rules of Golf, with this just being a slight tweak to the sport’s traditional etiquette with the player ‘taking the honour’ still being the main focus of attention. “If someone says you need to play faster, it does not mean you need to abbreviate or eliminate your pre-shot routine; it just means to better manage yours and your group’s time between shots.” Club captain Rob Taylor declares: “It’s just so simple to see through. “I now hear comments on our course such as: ‘If you are ready just play’ ‘I am not ready yet, play your shot’ ‘I will just play my shot and come over to help you look for your ball’ “Playing Ready Golf at our club has improved the pace of play and players do not get offended by playing out of turn.” Gareth Shaw, county development officer for the Staffordshire Golf Development Group, has welcomed the initiative. He says: “I believe Ready Golf goes hand in hand with our shorter formats focus and how we can improve the enjoyment of the sport and attract new players to golf”. Hints for players include: Tee off as soon as the group ahead is clear. The player who is ready should hit (not necessarily the one with the honour). Don’t everyone “cluster” at one ball, go to your own ball! Hit when ready without delay. If you see another player is ready to hit, whether you’re away or not, point to them to go ahead. Take your practice swings immediately if it does not disturb the player hitting. Watch their shot land to guard against the possibility for a lost ball, and then go through your own routine and swing away. If you are the first one at your ball and you’re ready to safely hit, let the others know that you are hitting. Limit lost ball search to 3 minutes, except under competition rules. Study your putt while others are putting. Continue putting until holed out. Don’t mark unless you will step on someone’s line or it’s a really tricky putt. If you can’t score, quit putting and pick up. 17 Feb 2016 On your marks! Get ready for golf