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John Sturbin, Senior Writer

John Sturbin joined the staff of RacinToday.com after a 35-year career in the daily newspaper business, the last 12 as nationally recognized motorsports beat writer at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. He was point-man for the paper’s expanded and award-winning motorsports coverage beginning in the mid-1990s, centered around NASCAR and IndyCar series events at Texas Motor Speedway. Sturbin covered his first Indianapolis 500 in 1980, and has staffed “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” every year since. He regularly has covered the National Hot Rod Association’s annual event at Texas Motorplex in Ennis since the mid-1980s. A native of Rome, N.Y., Sturbin first followed the careers of NASCAR Modified champions Richie Evans and Jerry Cook at Utica-Rome Speedway in Vernon, N.Y., as a fan before eventually covering both drivers as sports writer at The Daily Sentinel. While at The Sentinel, Sturbin began staffing Formula One’s annual autumn visit to Watkins Glen International during the mid-1970s. Since moving to Fort Worth in October 1978, he has covered Formula One events on street circuits in Dallas and Phoenix and at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Sturbin’s international travels while covering professional boxing led to a freelance assignment staffing the 1989 24 Hours of Le Mans for The Associated Press. He also has authored freelance articles for numerous clients, including Texas Motor Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway. John has served as a voting member of the Driver of the Year media panel since 1996, as well as various industry-related hall of fame selection committees. Sturbin received the prestigious Bloys Britt Award in motorsports, as judged by The Associated Press, for a feature on IndyCar icon A.J. Foyt Jr.’s rehabilitation from devastating foot and leg injuries. He also is a past recipient of the National Hot Rod Association’s Media Award. During his tenure at the Star-Telegram, Sturbin received numerous in-house awards for motorsports coverage, including Editorial Employee of the Month and Spot News Story of the Year for his report on the death of seven-time NASCAR champion Dale Earnhardt in February 2001. In addition to his motorsports resume, Sturbin logged two stints covering the Dallas Cowboys as backup beat writer. He also has covered the NFL, Major League Baseball, NBA, NHL, NCAA football and basketball, World Gymnastics Championships and various high school and semi-pro sports. A graduate of Utica (N.Y.) College, Sturbin is a classic car and motorcycle enthusiast. He resides in Southwest Fort Worth.

Articles by John Sturbin

Sturbin: Notes On Racing IndyCars In Japan
Thursday, Sep 16, 2010 – 10:19 | Comments Off
Sturbin: Notes On Racing IndyCars In Japan

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
Utsunomiya, Tochigi, Japan – When I was a big-time boxing writer, Europe was my playground.
Actually, Europe was the playground of undisputed welterweight (147-pound) champion Donald Curry of Fort Worth. Curry’s career became my “beat” in the early 1980s while I was a sports writer at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.  As [...]

Castroneves Wins, Race Tightens At Kentucky
Saturday, Sep 4, 2010 – 21:41 | Comments Off
Castroneves Wins, Race Tightens At Kentucky

Helio Castroneves now knows both sides of what it’s like to play the fuel at Kentucky Speedway.
Denied a victory on the 1.5-mile oval when he ran out of fuel heading to the checkered flag in 2008, Castroneves collaborated with Team Penske president Tim Cindric on an ethanol-stingy strategy that won the IZOD IndyCar Series’ Kentucky [...]

IndyCar Notes: Tracy Back And Ready For Barnburner
Friday, Sep 3, 2010 – 8:28 | Comments Off
IndyCar Notes: Tracy Back And Ready For Barnburner

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
Kentucky Speedway’s 1.5-mile layout technically classifies it among the “cookie-cutter” intermediate superspeedways on the IZOD IndyCar Series schedule.
To open-wheel veteran Paul Tracy, however, Kentucky Speedway qualifies as uncharted territory. That will change Saturday night, when Tracy returns to the series with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing for the Kentucky Indy 300.
Tracy [...]

Sturbin: It’s Viewers Versus TV In IndyCar
Wednesday, Sep 1, 2010 – 17:04 | 7 Comments
Sturbin: It’s Viewers Versus TV In IndyCar

Normally, I don’t have anything to say about coverage of the IZOD IndyCar Series on VERSUS. That’s because Charter Communications, my cable provider in Fort Worth, Texas, does not include VERSUS in either the basic or premium sports package to which I currently subscribe.
Used to get VERSUS for free, back when it was the Outdoor [...]

Game On: Title Fight Breaks Out At Chicagoland
Saturday, Aug 28, 2010 – 20:47 | Comments Off
Game On: Title Fight Breaks Out At Chicagoland

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
Having just lopped 36 points off Will Power’s once-cushy advantage Saturday night, Dario Franchitti was asked to reassess his IZOD IndyCar Series championship chances with three races remaining.
“Trust me,” Franchitti said, “I’ll be pedaling as hard as I can.”
Franchitti and his Target Chip Ganassi Racing team used a clever bit [...]

NHRA Adjusts Schedule For 2011
Saturday, Aug 28, 2010 – 7:09 | One Comment
NHRA Adjusts Schedule For 2011

Inclusion of the Arizona Nationals as Round No. 4 of the six-race Countdown to the Championship, and a repositioning of the prestigious Mac Tools U.S. Nationals, highlight the 2011 National Hot Rod Association Full Throttle Drag Racing Series schedule.
NHRA will mark its “60th Anniversary Celebration” via a 22-race national tour, with the most significant change [...]

McClenathan, Tasca Top Testing
Friday, Aug 27, 2010 – 6:46 | Comments Off
McClenathan, Tasca Top Testing

Cory McClenathan powered his FRAM Dragster to a performance better than both ends of the current Top Fuel track record at O’Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis Thursday during Day 2 of testing for the 56th annual Mac Tools U.S. Nationals presented by Lucas Oil.
NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series teams utilized the open test session [...]

IndyCar Notes: Stickers Allow Power To Get A Grip In Qualifying
Sunday, Aug 22, 2010 – 6:27 | Comments Off
IndyCar Notes: Stickers Allow Power To Get A Grip In Qualifying

Will Power earned his IZOD IndyCar Series-record eighth PEAK Performance Pole Award of the season Saturday at Infineon Raceway, where advancing into the Firestone Fast Six was the more difficult part of qualifications for the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma.
Team Penske’s Power posted a quick lap of 1 minute, 16.5282-seconds/108.337 mph with 1:30 left in [...]

IndyCar Notes: Franchitti Has The Late-Season Races Circled
Saturday, Aug 21, 2010 – 7:15 | Comments Off
IndyCar Notes: Franchitti Has The Late-Season Races Circled

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
Dario Franchitti continued his full-court press on IZOD IndyCar Series points-leader Will Power at Infineon Raceway Friday, pacing opening practice for the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma.
The defending event winner, Franchitti turned a lap of 1 minute, 18.2970-seconds on the 2.303-mile road course. Power, of Verizon Team Penske, was second-fastest [...]

Two For Texas – Bernard, Gossage Fire Up The IndyCar Brand
Friday, Aug 20, 2010 – 7:51 | Comments Off
Two For Texas – Bernard, Gossage Fire Up The IndyCar Brand

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.
Dallas – Randy Bernard smiles when he says his five-month tenure as Indy Racing League CEO has felt like five years. As the self-described “new guy on the job,” Bernard has been running full-throttle.
“ ‘Drinking water from a fire hose’ is my favorite saying, and every day it’s a new [...]