Stewart suggests he may have more races ahead

Tony Stewart hasn’t ruled out a return in some form to NASCAR, perhaps in the Xfinity Series or at Charlotte Motor Speedway’s road course.

The three-time NASCAR champion expressed interest in getting back in a stock car Wednesday as he introduced Aric Almirola as the newest driver at Stewart-Haas Racing, replacing Danica Patrick.

At one point, Almirola turned to his new boss and asked if he can run Xfinity Series races next season.

Stewart told Almirola he’d have to see, since Stewart might want to run some races next year. Stewart added he’s had discussions to run some races at road courses, including the one Charlotte will debut next fall.

Stewart later told The Associated Press he’s working on something even bigger that does not involve NASCAR.

Almirola’s move was expected after Smithfield Foods moved its sponsorship from Richard Petty Motorsports to SHR for 2018. Almirola has been partnered with Smithfield with Petty.


FOUR NATIONS CUP: Kendall Coyne and Megan Bozek each had a goal and an assist, and the U.S. women’s team beat Canada 4-2 on Wednesday night in a physical game at Wesley Chapel, Florida.

Cayla Barnes and Alex Carpenter scored to help the Americans win their second game as they try to win this event for a third straight time.

Rebecca Johnston and Meghan Agosta scored for Canada.

NHL: Frederik Andersen made 35 saves to help the Toronto Maple Leafs beat the visiting Minnesota Wild 4-2.

Nazem Kadri, Patrick Marleau, Connor Carrick and Connor Brown scored for Toronto. Playing with star center Auston Matthews out day to day with an upper-body injury, Toronto improved to 10-7-0.

Jason Zucker scored twice for Minnesota, and Devan Dubnyk stopped 15 shots. The Wild have lost three in a row to fall to 5-7-2.


LPGA: Sun Young Yoo carded a seven-under 65 to take a one-stroke lead after the first round of the Blue Bay event at Hainan, China.

Yoo had seven birdies and hit 12 of 14 fairways in a bogey-free round at Jian Lake Blue Bay Golf Club. Xiang Sui of China had a 66, one clear of five players at 5 under.

No. 1-ranked Sung Hyun Park shot a 68 for a share of ninth.


MEN’S BASKETBALL: Auburn fired associate head coach Chuck Person, who has been indicted on federal bribery, conspiracy and fraud charges.

The university announced the move a day after Person and seven others were indicted by a federal grand jury in New York.

An Auburn statement said Person “is no longer an employee. As such, this is in the hands of the criminal justice system.” The school said he was fired Oct. 18. Person had been suspended following his arrest in September.


GIRLS’ SOCCER: Aaliyah Farid had three goals and an assist, Caroline Starr added a goal and two assists, and Berwick Academy (15-3-1) wrapped up its Eastern Independent League regular season with an 8-1 win over Concord Academy (2-9-2) at South Berwick.

The Bulldogs will host Beaver Country Day (11-3-1) at 2 p.m. Friday in an EIL semifinal.


WORLD CUP: The United Nations labor agency ended a potential investigation of Qatar after the 2022 World Cup host pledged to protect the rights of migrant workers.

The International Labor Organization closed a formal complaint procedure opened three years ago “concerning non-observance by Qatar of the Forced Labor Convention.” The ILO’s Governing Body said it would monitor progress for three years.

MLS: Atlanta midfielder Julian Gressel was named the league’s Rookie of the Year.

Gressel, 23, had nine assists, third-most for a rookie in MLS history. He also had five goals.