Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Weekly Pull List: 9/20/2017

All the comics available this week can be found on ComicList, and any comic book news is on CBR.

BOOM! Studios
Go Go Power Rangers #3

Marvel
All-New Guardians of the Galaxy #10
Amazing Spider-Man Renew Your Vows #11
Journey to Star Wars The Last Jedi Captain Phasma #2
Peter Parker the Spectacular Spider-Man #4
Spider-Men II #3
Star Wars Annual #3
Star Wars Poe Dameron #19
Venom #154
Venomverse #3

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Truex Begins Playoffs with a Victory

Originally written for CLNS Media.

Martin Truex Jr. won the Tale of the Turtles 400 from Chicagoland Speedway on Sunday, the first race of NASCAR’s playoffs.

Truex took the lead in the final stage on Sunday, and he was able to pull away from Chase Elliott over the final run to pick up his fifth victory of the season.  Truex already had the most playoff points going into Round 1, but this victory automatically puts him into the next round.

Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images
Truex said he was excited he and his team could get to victory lane to kick off the playoffs.

“This is the playoffs, this is what it’s all about,” Truex said.  “I’m so excited…my team’s unbelievable.  We’re just having fun…proud of this group.”

Truex did not start the day off well, with multiple pit road problems costing him spots in the first segment.  Truex was able to battle back, and he finally took the lead in the final segment.

Truex said his team never gave up when they fell back early.

“We got the speeding penalty…after last year having to come from the back,” Truex said.  “We just kept our heads down and kept fighting…just did what we always do.”

“It’s important to come here and not let the pressure get to you, and I think we did a good job of that.  On to the next round.”

Elliott entered the playoffs without a victory, and he had a strong showing on Sunday.  Elliott fell short of beating Truex, but Elliott said this was the kind of race his team needed to kick off their playoff run.

“We had a solid day all around…our car was fast and we had good pit stops on pit road,” Elliott said.  “Without some luck I wasn’t going to beat the 78 [of Truex]…I didn’t have anything for Martin.”

“This is the time to go and we gave it our all today.  I think it’s a testament to our team and the lack of quit that everybody has.”

Unofficial results:
1. Martin Truex Jr.
2. Chase Elliott
3. Kevin Harvick
4. Denny Hamlin
5. Kyle Larson
6. Brad Keselowski
7. Joey Logano
8. Jimmie Johnson
9. Matt Kenseth
10. Jamie McMurray
11. Ryan Blaney
12. Daniel Suarez
13. Clint Bowyer
14. Paul Menard
15. Kyle Busch
16. Austin Dillon
17. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
18. Danica Patrick
19. Kurt Busch
20. Landon Cassill
21. Kasey Kahne
22. Trevor Bayne
23. Ryan Newman
24. Aric Almirola
25. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
26. AJ Allmendinger
27. Chris Buescher
28. Ty Dillon
29. David Ragan
30. Michael McDowell
31. Matt DiBenedetto
32. Reed Sorenson
33. Erik Jones
34. Jeffrey Earnhardt
35. Cole Whitt
36. Corey LaJoie
37. Brett Moffitt
38. Gray Gaulding
39. Timmy Hill
40. Ray Black Jr.

Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Weekly Pull List: 9/13/2017

All the comics available this week can be found on ComicList, and any comic book news is on CBR.

Marvel
Amazing Spider-Man #32
Ben Reilly Scarlet Spider #7
Deadpool #36
Gwenpool #20
Rocket #5
Secret Empire Omega #1
Star Wars #36
Star Wars Doctor Aphra #12
Venomverse #2

Monday, September 11, 2017

NASCAR Heat 2 Now Available

NASCAR Heat 2, the newest NASCAR video game, is now available for PS4, Xbox One and PC.

The game, a sequel to 2016's NASCAR Heat Evolution, was developed by Monster Games and released by 704Games.  704Games, previously known as Dusenberry-Martin Racing, is the same studio that released the last game in 2016.

Photo courtesy 704Games
The new game features all three national touring series, bringing the Xfinity Series and Camping World Truck Series back into a NASCAR video game for the first time since EA published NASCAR 09.  With the addition of these series, new tracks have been added, including the dirt track Eldora Speedway for the Truck Series.

This year, local split-screen multiplayer was included with the game.  Split-screen was a notable omission from last year's release, so it is a welcomed addition to this year's game.  Another addition that 704Games has included is the ability to customize your car in career mode.

As with last year's release, the player will have the option to complete 29 challenges, one for every track.  More challenges should be added in later via downloadable content.  Along with the single-player career mode, there will be an enhanced online multiplayer component, featuring 40-player lobbies.

The game is available now for $49.99 from most major retailers, as well as the Playstation Store, Xbox Live Marketplace and Steam.  Included with a physical copy of the game is a $50 coupon for race tickets at any SMI track in 2018.  A season pass will also be available for $29.99, which should be about half the price of all the DLC that will be released.

Check back in the coming weeks to see my review of NASCAR Heat 2.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Larson Wins Regular Season Finale

Originally written for CLNS Media.

Kyle Larson ended the regular season with a victory in Saturday night’s Federated Auto Parts 400 from Richmond Raceway.

Sean Gardner/Getty Images
Larson led 53 laps on Saturday, but he needed to use a late-race pit stop to take the lead for the final time.  His pit crew got him out front heading into overtime, and he was able to pull away from the field to head to victory lane.

Larson said he was excited his team was able to get him his first victory at a track shorter than 2 miles.

“This is amazing,” Larson said.  “My whole team, especially my pit crew tonight, were awesome.  The best pit crew showed up tonight…they were money all night long.”

Martin Truex Jr. dominated the race again, but Larson was able to get ahead on the final restart.  Larson said he knew he’d need a caution to catch Truex in the closing laps.

“The Target Chevy was great all night, but [Truex] was definitely the best,” Larson said.  “That was such a long run there at the end, I knew I needed a caution if I wanted a shot.”

“I’m really pumped for the playoffs; we’ve got a great shot at the championship.”

Truex led a race-high 198 laps, but wrecked in the closing laps for the second week in a row and finished 20th. 

Truex said he was unhappy with the final caution for Derrike Cope with four laps to go.

“Tonight sucked, plain and simple,” Truex said.  “Caution for a guy that shouldn’t even be out there is kind of ridiculous.  I don’t really know what to say about all that.”

Unofficial results:
1. Kyle Larson
2. Joey Logano
3. Ryan Newman
4. Kurt Busch
5. Denny Hamlin
6. Erik Jones
7. Daniel Suarez
8. Jimmie Johnson
9. Kyle Busch
10. Chase Elliott
11. Brad Keselowski
12. Kasey Kahne
13. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
14. Jamie McMurray
15. Kevin Harvick
16. Michael McDowell
17. Aric Almirola
18. Ryan Blaney
19. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
20. Martin Truex Jr.
21. Austin Dillon
22. Ty Dillon
23. Danica Patrick
24. Clint Bowyer
25. Trevor Bayne
26. AJ Allmendinger
27. David Ragan
28. Paul Menard
29. Corey LaJoie
30. Reed Sorenson
31. Matt DiBenedetto
32. Chris Buescher
33. Cole Whitt
34. Jeffrey Earnhardt
35. Gray Gaulding
36. Derrike Cope
37. BJ McLeod
38. Matt Kenseth
39. Landon Cassill

Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Weekly Pull List: 8/6/2017

All the comics available this week can be found on ComicList, and any comic book news is on CBR.

Marvel
All-New Guardians of the Galaxy #9
Astonishing X-Men #3
Journey to Star Wars the Last Jedi: Captain Phasma #1
Spider-Man #20
Spider-Man Deadpool #21
Star Wars Darth Vader #5
Venomverse #1
Venomverse War Stories #1

Monday, September 4, 2017

Hamlin Dominates to Win at Darlington

Originally written for CLNS Media.

Denny Hamlin won the Bojangles’ Southern 500 from Darlington Raceway on Sunday night.

Hamlin had a strong car all night, but a pit miscue on the final pit stop almost cost him the victory.  Hamlin missed pit road under green, and had to come back around before he could complete his pit stop.
Sarah Crabill/Getty Images

Hamlin said he thought his night was over when he missed pit road and gave up 10 seconds to Martin Truex Jr.

“To get through the adversity we did right there, I knew I had to drive my tail off to get it back,” Hamlin said.

The victory was Hamlin’s second Southern 500 victory, and his second victory of the weekend following a win in Saturday’s Xfinity race.  Hamlin said this victory was more special than his first victory at the track in 2010.

“So proud to be back here in victory lane in the Southern 500,” Hamlin said.  “To have the family around…it means so much more.”

“This track is just amazing; I love this racetrack.  It means everything to me, as far as I’m concerned.”

Truex Jr. led 76 laps on Sunday and looked as though he would wrap up another victory.  But a flat tire with two laps remaining allowed Hamlin to take the lead, and Truex wound up eighth.

Truex said losing the race with such a fast car was a disappointment.

“Sometimes these things just don’t go your way, and tonight not much did,” Truex said.  “We had a fast car…just a phenomenal racecar on the long runs, and it was just two laps too long.”

“I think I could have held him off if the tire didn’t pop.  I wish we could have got it tonight, but that’s the way it goes sometimes.”

Unofficial results:
1. Denny Hamlin
2. Kyle Busch
3. Kurt Busch
4. Austin Dillon
5. Erik Jones
6. Matt Kenseth
7. Ryan Newman
8. Martin Truex Jr.
9. Kevin Harvick
10. Jamie McMurray
11. Chase Elliott
12. Jimmie Johnson
13. Ty Dillon
14. Kyle Larson
15. Brad Keselowski
16. Paul Menard
17. Chris Buescher
18. Joey Logano
19. Michael McDowell
20. Aric Almirola
21. Landon Cassill
22. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
23. Cole Whitt
24. Kasey Kahne
25. David Ragan
26. Danica Patrick
27. Matt DiBenedetto
28. Corey LaJoie
29. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
30. Jeffrey Earnhardt
31. Ryan Blaney
32. Derrike Cope
33. Carl Long
34. AJ Allmendinger
35. Trevor Bayne
36. Gray Gaulding
37. Cody Ware
38. Daniel Suarez
39. Reed Sorenson
40. Clint Bowyer

Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images