Sports Briefs

AUTO RACING

Gordon holds off Johnson for checkered flag at Atlanta

HAMPTON, Ga. — With his car sliding all over the track, Jeff Gordon held off teammate Jimmie Johnson over a thrilling last 10 laps Tuesday to win the rain-delayed NASCAR race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Gordon won for the third time this season and 85th time in his career, breaking a tie with Bobby Allison and Darrell Waltrip for third on the career list.

Richard Petty (200) and David Pearson (105) are the only drivers in Cup history with more victories than Gordon.

“I totally forgot about that,” Gordon said, celebrating in front of the main grandstand. “Eighty-five, wow! That is un-un-believable. With the kind of day we had, the kind of year we’re having, I feel rejuvenated.”

Johnson made one last run for the lead on the final lap but had to back off to keep from putting his car in the wall. Gordon pulled away to win by 0.598 seconds.

The AdvoCare 500 was only the second Cup race since 1978 to be run on a Tuesday. It was originally scheduled for Sunday night, but rain from the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee forced a two-day postponement.

Tony Stewart was feeling a lot better about his chances after making up more than 8 seconds on the leaders in the final laps to finish third. He solidified his hold on 10th place — the final spot in the Chase that will be determined on points — heading to next weekend’s race at Richmond, the last one before the playoff field is set.

SOCCER

Belgium blanks U.S. 1-0

BRUSSELS — The U.S. national soccer team lost to Belgium 1-0 Tuesday, leaving Jurgen Klinsmann without a win in three games since he was hired as the Americans’ coach.

This was the first road game for the U.S. since Klinsmann came aboard. The Americans earlier tied Mexico and lost to Costa Rica.

Nicolas Lombaerts’ half volley in the 55th minute was the only goal in an exhibition game dominated by the Belgians on the rain-soaked field.

“It was an interesting game for both sides,” Klinsmann said. “For the first 25 minutes the U.S. had a good passing game going, but then the individual Belgian class started to show. The players have learned a lot from the game.”

Klinsmann, a former German star and coach, is looking to assemble the players who will play in the World Cup qualifiers that start next June. He pointed to such promising players as Juan Agudelo, Jose Torres, Brek Shea and Timmy Chandler.

• The Mexico club team Santos Laguna says former U.S. national coach Bob Bradley is in the running to become its coach.

The team fired Argentine coach Diego Cocca over the weekend. Bradley led the U.S. to the round of 16 at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. He was dismissed in July after the U.S. lost 4-2 to Mexico in the final of the Gold Cup

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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