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Volume 24 No. 117

People and Pop Culture

IndyCar CEO RANDY BERNARD "is replacing" Commercial Division President TERRY ANGSTADT with Dir of Bussiness Development MARK KORETZKY, according to Robin Miller of Also, after a season of “non-stop controversy, including starting a race in the rain and a lack of consistency in applying on-track penalties, BRIAN BARNHART has finally been removed” as President of Competition & Racing Operations. Barnhart “will be offered to stay on the payroll as president of operations but will no longer have anything to do with the officiating or managing” of races. Angstadt had been in his role since ’07 and “was instrumental in landing IZOD as the title sponsor of IndyCar” in '10. Miller noted Barnhart and Angstadt were “the last major links” to TONY GEORGE’s old IRL regime. Possible candidates to replace Barnhart “are former CART driver SCOTT PRUETT, ALMS chief steward BEAUX BARFIELD and longtime CART team owner STEVE HORNE” (, 11/29).

NBC Sports Group named MATTHEW HUTCHINGS President & GM of the soon-to-launch Comcast SportsNet Houston. He will report to JON LITNER, Group President of the NBC Sports Group. Hutchings had been President & CEO of Altitude, an RSN based in Denver. Altitude hired KIM CARVER to replace Hutchings as President & CEO. Carver had been VP & GM of The Mtn., the Mountain West Conference's channel that is partially owned by NBC Sports Group. The company said a search to replace Carver has already begun. CSN Houston will launch next fall as a partnership with the Astros and Rockets, which own a combined 80% of the RSN. The channel will launch with programming from the Rockets. It also holds the rights to the Astros starting in '13. Hutchings, who grew up in Houston, starts at the Houston RSN Dec. 12.

Asics promoted TRACY PAOLETTI to VP/Sales and PATTY KELLY to Regional Manager for the East. The company also named MIKE JENSEN Regional Manager for the Central territory (Asics)....Canadian Baseball HOF CEO TOM VALCKE is retiring after 10 years in his position (TORONTO SUN, 11/30)....The National Horseman's Benevolent & Protective Association named attorney PHIL HANRAHAN Chief Exec, effective Dec. 19 (Louisville COURIER-JOURNAL, 11/30)....The Jaguars signed GM GENE SMITH to a three-year extension (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 11/30)....PAUL BYRNE and DENNIS MOYNIHAN will transition from the MLS Dynamo front office to the Dynamo Stadium staff as Dir of Operations and Dir of Ticketing, respectively (THE DAILY)....The MLB Rangers named former MLBer GREG MADDUX Special Assistant to GM JON DANIELS. His main duty will be helping his brother, pitching coach MIKE MADDUX, work with the team's pitchers at the major league level and in the minors (, 11/29).

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NASCAR team Owner RICK HENDRICK, who suffered four broken ribs and a broken collarbone in a private plane crash last month, said that he “was feeling better but will miss this week’s Sprint Cup Series awards banquet in Las Vegas” (, 11/28)....President BARACK OBAMA yesterday spoke with L.A. Galaxy coach BRUCE ARENA, “congratulating him on his third MLS title and inviting the team to the White House” (, 11/29)....The Eagles announced that they will donate $500,000 toward “refurbishing three local youth football fields” (, 11/30)....Nuggets C CHRIS ANDERSON has joined PETA's “Ink Not Mink” campaign (DENVER POST, 11/30)....U.S. skier LINDSEY VONN and husband THOMAS each filed for divorce last week. They “were a distinctive, husband/wife and athlete/coach combination that was nearly unprecedented in the sport.” Vonn through her publicist said that she "intended to continue skiing under her married name" (N.Y. TIMES, 11/30).