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Side By Side: Does A Pair Of Drivers Dating Matter?

_Welcome back to Side By Side. There are always two sides to every story, and we're going to bring them both, right here, every week. Two of our staff writers will face off on an important racing question... feel free to tell us what you think in the weekly poll and also in the comments section below!_ *This Week's Question: Does a pair of drivers dating one another actually matter?* _Who's right? You decide!_ Marc Lemay, Frontstretch Webmaster: When It's Danica, It Matters It’s bigger than just “dating a fellow driver” when it comes to Danica Patrick. Yes, I am going to make an example of Danica, simply because she is, for better or worse, the torchbearer for future women coming into NASCAR.

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Tech Talk: Tony Gibson Dishes on Preparing for Gen-6 at Daytona

_Tony Gibson has been around the sport of stock car racing for a long time. He's seen three or four generations of the race cars in the Cup Series and now, he prepares to climb aboard the pit box for one of the most well-known female drivers in the history of the sport, Danica Patrick. As he takes on that new role, he also has to take on the task of learning how the latest iteration of the Cup car will react to the subtle nuances that crew chiefs throw at it in an attempt to make it faster. Gibson took a break from all that complexity, plus preparing his team to head to Daytona to speak with Mike Neff about the challenges that teams are facing as they head to the World Center of Speed in this season's first installment of Tech Talk._ Mike Neff: *You went down to Daytona last month for the big test with the new car. How much did you learn and when you unloaded down there, were you in a 500 setup or were you testing specific things with the car?* Tony Gibson: We were pretty much in race mode. I know it sounds strange to say single-car runs, but we weren't in any kind of qualifying mode.

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Beyond the Cockpit: Dion von Moltke on Audi, Team Dedication and Fitness

_For 22-year old Dion von Moltke, 2013 is a crossroads year. He spent last season developing the new Audi R8 Grand-Am with APR Motorsport. The car was a work in progress for much of the season before coming into its own late in the year. Now, the Audi is ready for primetime, but von Möltke is without a full-time ride._ _For the Rolex 24 at Daytona, von Möltke signed on as the fourth driver for Alex Job Racing’s Audi R8 Grand-Am, joining DTM racers Filipe Albuquerque and Edoardo Mortara, along with Oliver Jarvis. After final practice, von Möltke took some time out of his day to sit down with our own Phil Allaway._ Phil Allaway, Frontstretch.com: *This is the first time that Alex Job Racing has raced an Audi. Is this an absolutely new chassis, or a leased car?* Dion von Moltke: Yes, it’s a brand new car. It was really kind of a last-minute effort. It’s been an amazing job by Audi Sport Customer Racing as well as WeatherTech Racing and Alex Job just to get everything organized in time.

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Did You Notice? … Young Guns, V-Day Heartbreakers And NASCAR Quick Hits

*Did You Notice?...* The influx of young talent entering prime rides in 2013? The Frontstretch Staff "discussed this one":http://www.frontstretch.com/tbowles/42294/ in the sixth and final part of our season preview but, instead of answering there I wanted to expand on the topic elsewhere. For me, it's a copout because I have a hard time cutting down the drivers I'm watching to just one or two... So, without further ado, here's who you should put on the radar screen...

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Daytona Duels Get Added Adrenaline With Qualifying Change

_Editor's Note: Have you not signed up "for your FREE Frontstretch Newsletter":http://www.frontstretch.com/notice/9557/ in 2013? If you haven't heard, it's a daily edition we put out Monday through Friday with NASCAR news, commentary, interviews, and information you can't find anywhere else on the site. Every Wednesday, we'll have a little commentary like this one exclusive to the Newsletter; like what you read from Kevin? Then be sure to sign up with the link at the bottom of this column..._ Let's be real -- the allure of the pre-Daytona 500 Duels has been, for a few years now, fairly understated. Rather than a high-drama, high-stakes double shot of restrictor plate goodness prior to the big show, with a myriad of drivers racing for their spot on the starting grid, the top-35 rule of recent years eliminated a lot of no-holds-barred competition down the stretch.

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Top Ten Rejected Fan Votes For The Sprint Unlimited

*10.* The Encore:* Choose what Juan Pablo Montoya will blow up THIS year! *9.* New windshield name decals replaced with Twitter handles. The driver with the most new followers gets the victory. *8.* Dunk the Dodo: Fans select one lucky driver to sit in a dunk tank during driver intros, while the rest take their best shot at him as they walk across the stage.

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Tweet N Greet

@jamiemcmurray: Our 2nd child was born earlier today. Both mom and Hazel are going great. We feel so blessed to have 2 healthy kids. @mattkenseth: I can’t wait to get back to racing in the nationwide series, Thanks @gamestopracing and @resers! @BubbaWallace (Darrell Wallace, Jr.): Kyle to us(drivers): “I didn’t …

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Mason Mingus Hoping Decision Pays Off In Daytona

For ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards championship contender Mason Mingus, the decision to halt a successful wrestling career in lieu of competing at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway, the site of Saturday’s season-opening Lucas Oil 200 presented by MAVTV American Real, undoubtedly is one of the toughest choices he’s ever …

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USAC WESTERN CHAMPS FETED IN PASO ROBLES

USAC’s 2012 Western Champions and special award winners were honored Saturday night at the Estrella Warbirds Museum and Woodland Auto Display in Paso Robles, Calif. Competitors in the Ignite Midgets, Western Midgets, Western Classic Sprints, West Coast Sprints, USAC/CRA Sprints, and more were celebrated as a large crowd was in …

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Scott Bloomquist Back in Lucas Oil Victory Lane at East Bay with Flag-to-Flag Win

Scott Bloomquist leads all 25 laps en route to his first Lucas Oil Dirt Late Model win of the season over Don O’Neal and Steve Francis. Photo Courtesy of Lucas Oil Dirt Late Models Scott Bloomquist won tonight’s main event in dominating fashion, leading flag-to-flag. Just one night after coming …

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