Northern Enterprises is pleased to announce the commencement of the North-Link network on Friday, May 4th, 1:45 pm at the Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital. Senator Patrick Leahy and other dignitaries will be on hand to formally launch construction of this fiber optic high-speed network. The fiber optic system will serve as a backbone for broadband access throughout the Northeast Kingdom where major areas have been sidelined from high speed internet access. North-Link is a $ 10 million fiber optic network designed by Northern Enterprises, in cooperation with the Economic Development Council of Northern Vermont, that encompasses eight Vermont Counties, three States and two countries. The network is a public-private partnership with financial backing coming from the federal government, local businesses and communities.
Ron Hornaday’s NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series team brought a new truck for Friday night’s race at California Speedway. Rick Ren, Hornaday’s crew chief on the No. 33 Chevrolet Silverado for Kevin Harvick Inc., said there are two things working to their team’s advantage. Kevin Harvick Inc. brought two trucks to California Speedway. Harvick, who owns the team, was in the No. 2 Chevrolet Silverado for the team. “With KHI racing two trucks, we will get twice the information and feedback,” Ren said. “We also feel like the pre-season testing at Homestead has given us some direction for this event.” The new truck was fast. Hornaday, a former Saugus Speedway champ from Palmdale, qualified it sixth for the race. Harvick started the race 21st. “We had more than that in our AES HR Chevrolet Silverado, but we had to play it safe,” Hornaday said. “We still have to do some more homework to beat some of those other manufacturers but we definitely are going the right direction and we are looking forward to it.” Hornaday was one of seven former Truck Series champions in the race Friday night. Mike Skinner, Jack Sprague, Mike Bliss, Travis Kvapil, Ted Musgrave and Todd Bodine were the others. Sprague won the Truck Series season opener at Daytona International Speedway last week. That gave him 28 career Truck Series wins, one behind Hornaday who has the record for most wins in series history. There isn’t much technological or mechanical information teams can transfer from Daytona to California Speedway, but Sprague said his team has a great deal of confidence after winning the first race of the year. “Things are going really good all the way around,” said Sprague, driver of the No. 60 Toyota for Wyler Racing, “so I certainly think we got a chance to fight for a win here.” Indy Racing League: Dan Wheldon was the fastest driver in two days of testing at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Wednesday and Thursday. Wheldon, the 2005 Indy Racing League champion, wrecked his car for Chip Ganassi Racing on the first day of testing. His fastest lap on the second day of testing on the 1.5-mile oval was 24.905 seconds at 214.350 mph. “It was a very good test in terms of outright speed, but I did destroy a car the first day,” Wheldon said. “That was my first crash since 2003. I’m performing well, but there are still some improvements that we can make.” Sam Hornish Jr., a driver for Team Penske, was among the fastest drivers on Thursday. His best lap of the day came in 24.960 seconds and 214.178 mph. Hornish went from testing at Homestead to California Speedway to race in today’s NASCAR Busch Series race. Tony Kanaan, driver for Andretti Green Racing, was third fastest at 214.119 mph. His teammate Marco Andretti was fourth at 213.944 mph and Helio Castroneves, Hornish’s teammate at Team Penske, was fifth at 213.869 mph. “I know Kanaan is quicker than he’s letting on, and Sam is always quick,” Wheldon said. “Scott (Dixon) had a little bit of trouble with his car, but it will be fixed and he’ll be up with us for the race.” The Indy Racing League season opens March 24 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. All the cars in the Indy Racing League use Honda engines, which are produced at Honda Performance Development, which is based in Santa Clarita. “It was a productive two days other than the fact that I did $300,000 worth of damage,” Wheldon said. “Chip was nice about it. I have a good relationship with Chip. I made a mistake (Wednesday). I was working in traffic, and I just lost too much of the car too soon. You’re going to make mistakes. I never said that I was perfect. But when you race on ovals and you make a mistake, it can be expensive.” American Le Mans Series: Valencia’s Bryan Herta will race with Tony Kanaan and Dario Franchitti in the American Le Mans Series season opener, the 12 Hours of Sebring in Florida on March 17. They will be driving the No. 26 Acura-powered LMP2 entry for Andretti Green Racing. The Acura engines are developed and maintained at Honda Performance Development. “We’re excited about the lineup we’ve assembled for our American Le Mans Series debut,” said Andretti Green Racing Chief Executive Officer Kim Green. “Dario, Tony and Bryan have a long history together and have a great chemistry between them, which should be very beneficial to us as we prepare for the 12 Hours of Sebring. Our program is coming along nicely and we’re working extremely hard to put together what we hope can be a winning effort for XM, Acura and all of our partners.” Acura is making its debut in the American Le Mans Series. It has three teams in the LMP2 division. Herta has been with Andretti Green Racing since 2003. He will be racing the entire American Le Mans Series for Andretti Green. Kanaan and Franchitti have also been Andretti Green Racing since 2003. They also drive in the Indy Racing League for Andretti Green. Acura has also signed on as the primary sponsor of the American Le Mans Series race at St. Petersburg, Fla. The Acura Sports Car Challenge of St. Petersburg will be the feature event on March 31 at the 2007 Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. “We realized when Acura indicated it was entering the American Le Mans Series, that it would be a very supportive and committed partner,” said Scott Atherton, president and CEO of the Series. “Being involved with series events such as the Acura Sports Car Challenge of St. Petersburg, as well as providing three top world-class race teams, further demonstrates that commitment. We hope to be involved in the St. Petersburg event for years to come as I think our style of racing is something fans will truly love and enjoy.” firstname.lastname@example.org (818) 713-3715160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!