Ryan Blaney to start last at Kansas after qualifying time disallowed

first_imgRELATED: Full lineup | Lineup in photosKANSAS CITY, Kan. — Post-qualifying inspection at Kansas Speedway on Friday night yielded a violation in the No. 21 Omnicraft Auto Parts Ford driven by Ryan Blaney, and the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoff driver will have to start Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400 from the rear of the field (3 p.m. ET, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).Officials found a problem with the rear of the car, saying in a statement later Friday night “the package tray did not maintain its original shape.”Blaney had qualified the car third overall — which would have been his best start since winning the pole here at Kansas in May. As a result, his team will make the last pit stall selection for Kansas, and also for next weekend’s race at Martinsville Speedway. Monster Energy Series teams will qualify for Martinsville hours prior to the race, so pit stall selections for that event are determined by qualifying order at Kansas.Blaney enters the Round of 12 cutoff race ranked seventh in the standings, nine points above the cutoff line. The top eight drivers following Sunday’s race will advance to the Round of 8.MORE: Analyzing the playoff bubblelast_img read more

Giant cake cut to celebrate West End retailers’ birthdays

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Slater chief predicts rapid consolidation in PI market

first_imgThe leader of one of the UK’s biggest practices has predicted just three firms will hold up to 40% of the personal injury market in future.Andrew Grech (pictured), managing director of Australian-owned Slater & Gordon, said consumer habits, technology and the availability of credit will help a handful of market leaders emerge.But that did not mean small firms cannot have a place in the legal services sector of the future, he told the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers conference today.‘Certainly there is consolidation going on in professional services and the legal profession is not immune to that,’ he said.‘In the UK there will end up being two or three quite large organisations sharing 30-40% of the consumer legal services consumer market. We hope to be the leader of those three firms.’But he added: ‘I don’t predict the end of small practices at all. If they’re very good they will flourish because clients want quality.’Grech’s firm, which is listed on the Australian stock exchange, has expanded rapidly in the UK since acquiring Russell Jones Walker two years ago, with the likes of parts of Pannone and Fentons also purchased.But he denied that the firm’s structure and funding might cause an issue with conflict of interest or interference from shareholders.‘I have never been asked a single question by an investor that relates to a case we’re conducting. What investors mostly care about is continuing being in business and it’s very hard to do that if you don’t have a practising certificate.‘Remind yourselves that all of the breaches of confidence of clients have occurred in partnerships. If it were true that [a partner] structure was the great protector of values and ethics of our profession then why is that so?’last_img read more

Pebley calls on USA Swimming to postpone Olympic trials

first_img(Reuters) – United States backstroke specialist Jacob Pebley has called on USA Swimming to postpone June’s Olympic trials and lobby for the Tokyo Games to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. “I am deeply concerned by the IOC’s recent statement that they are essentially continuing with business as usual despite the growing evidence that COVID-19 will remain a massive threat for the foreseeable future,” he wrote in an Instagram post yesterday.“How can we, members of Team USA and role models for hundreds of thousands of young athletes, attend Olympic trials/the Olympics in good conscience?“To do so would fly in the face of all emerging evidence and best practices for social distancing and protecting the health of vulnerable communities,” said the 26-year-old, currently a member of the national team. Pebley, who competed at the 2016 Rio Games, said even if the Olympics was held without spectators, the events would still require extensive travel and interaction among thousands of athletes, staff and media, which could spread the virus.“Athletes across the globe have been impacted differently by the rapidly evolving closure of training facilities. This creates a radically unequal playing field for Olympic hopefuls,” he said.“Holding Trials and the Olympics as currently scheduled provides impetus for athletes, some of whom can’t even leave their homes right now by law, to defy public health orders and advice given by medical authorities. “USA Swimming has the opportunity to lead the push for the only moral option in light of this unprecedented situation,”“I am asking USA Swimming to publicly advocate for the postponement of both Trials and the Olympic Games in the best interest of vulnerable people and already overburdened health systems around the world.”USA Swimming did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Pebley joins a growing chorus of athletes who believe the Games should be postponed.Organisers of the Tokyo Olympics have repeatedly said the Games, scheduled for July 24-Aug. 9, will go ahead as planned.The coronavirus has infected 242,000 people and killed nearly 10,000 worldwide.last_img read more