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Prelude rained out, rescheduled

Heavy rain drenched the dirt racing surface at Eldora Speedway and forced postponement of Wednesday's scheduled fifth running of the Prelude to the Dream charity late model event to Wednesday 9 September.

"We worked really hard to make sure everything was right for the drivers, fans and viewers at home on HBO Pay-Per-View, but the weather was the one element we couldn't control," said two-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Tony Stewart, who owns the half-mile track in rural Ohio and stages the annual event that this year supports four military-themed charities.

Wednesday's race was to have featured a 26-driver field that included an array of NASCAR's top stars˜Stewart, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Kasey Kahne and Carl Edwards among them˜and representatives from other speed sports. The rain date for the event falls between the Sept. 6 Cup race at Atlanta and the final race before the Chase for the Sprint Cup field is set Sept. 12 at Richmond.

Because television coverage for the Sept. 9 race hasn't been determined, those who ordered the event on HBO Pay-Per-View will receive refunds.

By the time the Prelude was postponed, four-time Cup champion Jeff Gordon already had withdrawn from the event, citing the chronic back problems that have plagued him this season.

It didn't help that Gordon took a huge hit during last Friday's qualifying for the Cup race at Dover. Gordon hit the wall off Turn 2 wall during his first lap and was forced to use a backup car for Sunday's race, in which he finished 26th.

Gordon's first words after the collision were, "It hurts."

by Reid Spencer/Sporting News


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