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SBD/August 16, 2013/Events and Attractions
Mid-Ohio Set For First NASCAR Race, Which Came At Behest of Series Sponsor Nationwide
Published August 16, 2013
NATIONWIDE IS ON THEIR SIDE: ESPN.com's Brant James wrote Rust is "simply glad Mid-Ohio is in the equation, as the combined ambition of series sponsor Nationwide," which is based about an hour away in Columbus, and promoters Kim Green and Kevin Savoree, who purchased the track in '11, "congealed into the first top-three-series NASCAR event at the facility." Montreal's Circuit Gilles Villeneuve "falling off the Nationwide schedule provided the opening, and the way the event has been embraced by local businesses and citizens -- Columbus resident and IndyCar driver Graham Rahal attempted unsuccessfully to land a ride for the event -- has created a spectacle with a home-pride feel" (ESPN.com, 8/15). USA TODAY's Nate Ryan writes there is an "underlying charitable theme" to the race, as 13 cars will feature "varying tributes to patients at a pediatric hospital in Columbus" (USA TODAY, 8/16). The COLUMBUS DISPATCH's May noted Sprint Cup Series driver Marcos Ambrose will be "competing in Nationwide for the first time since winning at Montreal in 2011 and doing so at the behest" of his primary sponsor Stanley (COLUMBUS DISPATCH, 8/15).