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SBD Global/February 12, 2013/People and Pop Culture

Names In The News

F1 team Scuderia Ferrari has "brought back Formula 1 design legend RORY BYRNE to work on the car" it will race in '14. Byrne, 69, "was the chief designer on the cars with which MICHAEL SCHUMACHER won all seven of his world titles, two with Benetton and five with Ferrari" (BBC, 2/11). ... Barcelona goalkeeper JOSE MANUEL PINTO has extended his contract with the club through June 30, 2014 (MARCA, 2/11). ... Chinese sailor GUO CHUAN "crossed the zero meridian" on Sunday, which was also the Lunar New Year Day, in his non-stop solo sailing expedition around the world. Guo celebrated the Chinese New Year with his wife and two sons through online video (XINHUA, 2/11). ... Football Association of Albania (FShF) Exec Committee Member & Futsal Organisation of Albania President ALFRED ZIJAI has died at the age of 52. Zijai was one of the most popular players with KS Flamurtari in the '80s, spending his entire career with his hometown club (UEFA). ... A Romanian court said that FC Steaua Bucharest Owner GIGI BECALI "has been handed a suspended three-year prison sentence for illegally detaining three people" (REUTERS, 2/11).

SIDE EFFECTS: Russian figure skater EVGENY PLUSCHENKO "is planning to sue a TV commentator, who called reports about the athlete’s spine surgery fake." While commentating on the Four Continents Figure Skating Championships for the Eurosport 2 channel on Saturday ANDREY ZHURNAKOV said: "That surgery never took place. The way it was reported in the media, with only Channel One making a story on it … all this reminds me of the strategy used to make PR-moves in show business." Pluschenko said, "I will defend my honor and dignity because it was an insult not only to me personally but to my whole family" (RUSSIA TODAY, 2/11). ... Bath and former England hooker LEE MEARS "has been forced to retire from rugby because of a heart problem." The 33-year-old "has spent 16 years at The Rec, making 268 appearances, and has been capped 42 times for his country" (BBC, 2/11).
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