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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

Fear Drives The Sarge Onward
Wednesday, Feb 10, 2010 – 8:14 | Comments Off
Fear Drives The Sarge Onward

Tony Schumacher concedes that his unprecedented run as NHRA Top Fuel champion now has become all about the losing.
“You know, the losing – I’m afraid to lose right now.  It’s crazy,” said Schumacher, a seven-time champion in drag racing’s premier professional class. “We’ve won six in a row.  And guess what?  It’s going to end [...]

‘The Big Go-West’ Produced Big Memories
Tuesday, Feb 9, 2010 – 7:39 | 2 Comments
‘The Big Go-West’ Produced Big Memories

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
This was a time of cross-country road-trips, greasy spoon diners and “pit stops” wherever along America’s two-lane blacktop nature called.
Their wide-eyed to bleary-eyed adventures from Florida, Texas and Indiana transported Don Garlits, Kenny Bernstein and Bob Glidden, respectively, to the home of the National Hot Rod Association and the endless [...]

JFR Retools, Parks Neff
Saturday, Jan 30, 2010 – 8:25 | Comments Off
JFR Retools, Parks Neff

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
John Force Racing, Inc., will compete for the 2010 NHRA Funny Car championship as a three-car operation, part of a wide-ranging corporate re-organization announced by the 14-time champion and team-owner.
Force said Mike Neff’s Ford Drive One Mustang team, which closed the 2009 season with its breakthrough victory, has been parked. [...]

Top Rookie Massey Now Top Free Agent
Friday, Jan 29, 2010 – 9:15 | Comments Off
Top Rookie Massey Now Top Free Agent

Fort Worth, Texas – Spencer Massey ended the 2009 drag racing season as the National Hot Rod Association’s top rookie competitor, and recipient of the prestigious Auto Club Road to the Future award.
But as baseball sage Yogi Berra once famously observed: “The future ain’t what it used to be.”
That hard fact was driven home for [...]

NHRA To Go Four-Wide For Real
Thursday, Jan 21, 2010 – 15:05 | Comments Off
NHRA To Go Four-Wide For Real

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
Four-wide drag racing will go from the talking stage to the staging lanes in historic fashion during the 2010 National Hot Rod Association season.
For the first time in NHRA national event history, qualifying and eliminations for Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Stock and Pro Stock Motorcycle at an NHRA Full [...]

Drivers Give Spoilers High Marks In First Test
Tuesday, Jan 19, 2010 – 22:20 | 3 Comments
Drivers Give Spoilers High Marks In First Test

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
Fort Worth, Texas – From a more traditional stock car look to added front downforce, the first on-track “baby steps” test of NASCAR’s rear-deck spoiler played to generally positive reviews at Texas Motor Speedway Tuesday.
And Sprint Cup driver Greg Biffle suggested there may even be a residual effect to the [...]

Spoilers To Be Tested At Texas On Tuesday
Monday, Jan 18, 2010 – 21:47 | 2 Comments
Spoilers To Be Tested At Texas On Tuesday

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
Fort Worth, Texas – Blade-running will go lap-after-lap with tire-testing beginning Tuesday at Texas Motor Speedway.
NASCAR’s new rear spoiler blade package for the Sprint Cup Series’ Car of Tomorrow will get its first on-track test Tuesday and Wednesday on TMS’ 1.5-mile quadoval, track president Eddie Gossage confirmed Monday afternoon.
Gossage said [...]

Big Test Follows Big Year At Texas
Saturday, Jan 16, 2010 – 8:14 | One Comment
Big Test Follows Big Year At Texas

Fort Worth, Texas – Sprint Cup racing at Texas Motor Speedway in 2009 produced two significant talking points:
Jeff Gordon won the Samsung 500 in April, ending a maddening streak that had seen the four-time series champion go 0-for-16 (with two last-place finishes) dating to the track’s debut in 1997. And an early-race crash involving points-leader [...]

Sturbin: A Personal Bucket List
Saturday, Jan 9, 2010 – 8:06 | 3 Comments
Sturbin: A Personal Bucket List

As of Jan. 1, I reluctantly joined the millions of Americans without health insurance. This is the product of a combination of procrastination and frustration.  As in, when a media colleague about the same age informed me he was paying $1,100 a month for a single-payer policy with Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Texas…I decided to [...]

Sturbin: Here Are 10 To Remember from ‘09
Wednesday, Dec 30, 2009 – 8:33 | 3 Comments
Sturbin: Here Are 10 To Remember from ‘09

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com
For those of us still fortunate enough to be involved in this profession, the 2009 motorsports season was not all about Jimmie and Junior and Danica.
For this writer, 2009 was about transitioning from a 35-year career in the daily newspaper industry into the 24/7 world of cyberspace. Away from the [...]