AUTO RACING: Byron gives Hendrick more to celebrate in Martinsville. Verstappen gets another F1 win

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AutoTrader EchoPark Automotive 400

Site: Fort Worth, Texas.

Schedule: Saturday, practice, 10:30 a.m., and qualifying, 11:20 a.m.; Sunday, race, 3:30 p.m. (FS1).

Track: Texas Motor Speedway.

Race distance: 267 laps, 400.5 miles.

Last year: William Byron won after starting 18th in late September.

Last race: Byron held onto the lead during a two-lap dash to the finish and led a 1-2-3 finish for Hendrick Motorsports at Martinsville, the first for a team in the track’s storied history.

Fast facts: The victory was Byron’s third in eight races. … Kyle Larson finished second and Chase Elliott was third on the 40th anniversary of the team’s first win. … Larson also took over the points lead by 14 over former leader Martin Truex Jr. … Despite his three victories, Byron is fourth in points, 48 behind Larson. … There were 13 lead changes among eight drivers. … The victory was the 29th for Hendrick on the 0.526-mile oval, the most for any organization at any track.

Next race: April 21, Talladega, Alabama.



Andy’s Frozen Custard 300

Site: Fort Worth, Texas.

Schedule: Friday, practice, 6 p.m., and qualifying, 6:30 p.m.; Saturday, race, 1:30 p.m. (FS1).

Track: Texas Motor Speedway.

Race distance: 200 laps, 300 miles.

Last year: John Hunter Nemechek won after starting 11th in late September.

Last race: Aric Almirola grabbed the lead by going three-wide on the outside in a two-lap overtime dash to the finish and won at Martinsville.

Fast facts: Almirola led six times for 148 laps in his fifth career victory in the series. He also won $100,000 as the top finisher among four drivers eligible for the Dash for Cash. … Chandler Smith finished third and expanded his points lead to 35 over Austin Hill. Smith is the only driver to have finished in the top 10 in all seven races. … Carson Kvapil finished fourth in his series debut. … The race featured 15 lead changes, eight different leaders and 11 cautions.

Next race: April 20, Talladega, Alabama.



Site: Fort Worth, Texas.

Schedule: Friday, practice, 4:05 p.m., qualifying, 4:35 p.m., and race, 8:30 p.m. (FS1).

Track: Texas Motor Speedway.

Race distance: 167 laps. 250.5 miles.

Last year: Carson Hocevar won after starting fifth.

Last race: Christian Eckes rallied from 19th and outran pole-winner Ty Majeski at Martinsville.

Fast facts: Eckes led the first 104 laps then regained the lead on the 172nd of 200 laps. … The victory was the second for Eckes this season. He also won on another short track at Bristol. … Majeski assumed the points lead by seven over Corey Heim and Tyler Ankrum.

Next race: May 4, Kansas City, Kansas.



Last race: Max Verstappen won for the third time in four races this season. The win in Japan was also his 22nd in the last 26 races.

Next race: April 21, Shanghai, China.



Last race: Two-time and reigning IndyCar champion Alex Palou won the Thermal $1 Million Challenge, leading all 20 laps of IndyCar’s first non-points race since 2008.

Next race: April 21, Long Beach, California.



Last event: Shawn Langdon won in Top Fuel and Austin Prock won in Funny Car in Arizona.

Next event: April 14, Las Vegas.



Next events: April 12 & 13, Pevely, Missouri.



AP auto racing: and

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