Famed driver Mario Andretti took time to talk to reporters in a teleconference on Tuesday afternoon to help promote this week’s Rolex 24 at Daytona. Here is a transcript of the interview:Moderator: Mario Andretti is another driver whose name is synonymous with the sport. He won the 1972 event in a factory Ferrari with Jacky Ickx and he's won the Indy 500, the Daytona 500 and [the] Formula One world championship. He debuted the Porsche 962 in the 1984 Rolex 24 at Daytona when he promptly put the car on the pole, and his son Michael co-drove in that race, and a couple years later he also drove a Porsche 962 with his sons Michael and Jeff. So Mario will not be participating this weekend, though his nephew John is going to be racing with his son, Jarett. So it's going to be quite an Andretti affair in the Rolex 24.Mario, welcome to our conference call to get ready for the 24 hours at Daytona. We talked a couple minutes ago about all the accomplishments you've had in your career and … [Read more...] about Grand Am: Mario Andretti reflects on his history with the Rolex 24 at Daytona
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Side by side, a 691-horsepower Lamborghini Aventador (right), and a 14.5-horse Mikrus MR-300. The yellow car in back is a Honda Civic. Nothing messes with the flow of a friendly quarter-ante poker game like the guy who suddenly whips out his wallet and throws a twenty into the pot. In an instant, the game has changed. The unexpected appearance of a double sawbuck next to a loosely clustered pot of coins strips the game of all perspective. Your carefully conceived plan to suck the other players in with a low raise has been blown out the window. Your only option now is to see this moron’s raise (guys like this never bluff—he’s sitting on at least three kings) or fold and hope he sits out for a few hands. Rolex and Lamborghini Poker, like so many things in life, is best enjoyed within certain bookends of reasonability. The fun in winning a game with friends and colleagues is not in walking out the door up fifty bucks—though that’s fun, too—it’s in … [Read more...] about Rolex and Lamborghini: The Blunt Instruments of the Enthusiast World
It felt like there were twice as many people at the Rolex 24 at Daytona 24 this year, and last year was supposed to be the all-time attendance record. Before the race, the infield was shoulder to shoulder, and even the stands were crowded with fans. The weekend saw a record 19 manufacturers in competition. I don’t know that I could name 19 manufacturers without cheating.We’ll see what the final numbers were, but it’s not crazy to think that sports car racing is as big as it’s ever been in the U.S.Even through the rain, the racing was impossibly beautiful. Alonso and Castroneves battling at dusk, and then Alonso again in the morning, in turn 1, displaying mastery of a car he barely knew, mastery of a downpour that consumed some of the best in the field — not to mention Zanardi’s heroism and the No. 57 MSR Acura team that carried decades of unknown slights, missed opportunities and doubt with joy and with the strength that women earn.Just another … [Read more...] about Rolex 24 at Daytona excitement is proof of racing’s staying power and beauty
Podcasting superstar Sarah Koenig and crew have returned with another season of "Serial," and this time it follows the compelling story of Bowe Bergdahl (pictured left). U.S. Army/Taylor Hill/Getty It's been a little more than 24 hours since the first episode of "Serial's" second podcast season dropped. If you're obsessed enough with the "This American Life" spin-off's unique, addictive storytelling, this is more than enough time to have listened on your commute, your lunch break or maybe even during an impromptu podcast party. While the first season of "Serial" asked whether Adnan Syed was guilty of the 1999 murder of Hae Min Lee, its sophomore outing is considerably different. That's not just due to the new storyline, which centers on the disappearance, captivity and release of U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl, who spent five years held by the Taliban as the longest-held U.S. soldier since the Vietnam War. "Serial" also has broader distribution and new transmedia elements that offer … [Read more...] about ‘Serial’ Is Back and Has Upped Its Podcasting Game
In China, the number 4 sounds very similar to the word for death. Daryl Benson/Getty Images You don't do it often, but today was payday and you're feeling lucky. It's time to buy a lottery ticket. As you stand at the counter and consider which numbers to choose, you weigh the options. You'll definitely add a 7 to the lottery ticket. Maybe an 11, too. But a 13? No way -- everyone knows that number is unlucky. Well, everyone in the United States, anyway. If you lived in Asia, odds are you'd steer clear of the number 4 instead. In many East Asian cultures, including China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan, the number 4 is considered unlucky. If you step onto an elevator, you probably won't see a button indicating the fourth floor because most apartment buildings and hospitals skip the number altogether. In Beijing, it's not even possible to get a vehicle license plate that has the number 4 on it. And in Singapore, a luxury carmaker had to change the name of the Alfa Romeo model 144 because … [Read more...] about Why do some cultures believe the number 4 is unlucky?