Denny Hamlin wins NASCAR race after nine-car wreck

Three weeks after winning another rain-postponed race, and since having surgery to repair the torn ligament in his left knee, Denny Hamlin gingerly climbed out of his car in Victory Lane at Texas Motor Speedway on Monday.

“I’m still not 100% by any means right now,” Hamlin said. “I feel like I’m 60 at best.”

That was still good enough to win at Fort Worth.

Hamlin led the final 12 laps, the only time he was up front after starting the 334-lap race 29th. The final shootout came after a nine-car wreck took out polesitter Tony Stewart and dominating Jeff Gordon.

Hamlin held off points leader Jimmie Johnson at the end for the 10th NASCAR Sprint Cup victory of his career.

Kyle Busch won his fifth consecutive Nationwide Series race at Texas Motor Speedway, joining two-time series champion Jack Ingram and Dale Earnhardt Sr. as the only drivers to win five consecutive races in NASCAR’s second-tier series at the same track.

Busch had finished third earlier in the rain-postponed Sprint Cup race.

Busch beat Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Joey Logano, the polesitter, by 0.688 of a second.


Gagne says he is retiring

Former Dodgers closer Eric Gagne announced his retirement, not in a news conference or press release but in an informal interview with a French-language website. Gagne’s agent, Scott Boras, confirmed his decision, saying the pitcher did not want to spend another summer away from his children with no assurance he could return to the form that led him to the Cy Young Award in 2003.

And so Gagne’s major league career concluded in relatively anonymous fashion, on Sept. 25, 2008, as the fourth of eight pitchers for the Milwaukee Brewers in a 5-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates. Gagne, the most accomplished closer in Dodgers history, worked a scoreless seventh inning.

—Bill Shaikin


Kenyan sets record in Boston

Let him be known from Hopkinton to the Back Bay as “Robert the Younger” — the second Kenyan named Robert K. Cheruiyot to win the Boston Marathon and the first person to run the legendary course in under 2 hours 6 minutes.

Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot won the 114th Boston race, finishing in 2:05:52 to shatter by 82 seconds the course record set by four-time winner Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot, who’s not related. Ryan Hall of Mammoth Lakes, who finished third last year, missed another spot on the podium by two seconds, but his time of 2:08:41 was the fastest ever for a U.S. runner in Boston.

Ethiopia’s Teyba Erkesso took the women’s title in 2:26:11, sprinting to the tape to win by three seconds in the event’s third-closest women’s finish.


Valero commits suicide in cell

Former boxing champion Edwin Valero, who had a spectacular career with 27 straight knockouts and flaunted a tattoo of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on his chest, hanged himself in his jail cell after being charged with stabbing his wife to death, police said.

The former lightweight champion used the sweat pants he was wearing to hang himself from a bar in the cell, said his lawyer, Milda Mora.

Valero, 28, had problems with alcohol and cocaine addiction and struggled with depression. He had previously been suspected of assaulting his wife.

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger violated the NFL’s personal-conduct policy, Commissioner Roger Goodell said.

Goodell said on the Dan Patrick radio show the key issue is a “pattern of behavior” and “bad judgments.”

Last week, prosecutors in Georgia declined to charge Roethlisberger after a college student accused him of sexual assault in March.

The NFL is expected to discipline Roethlisberger, although it says there is no timetable for such a decision.

Washington basketball Coach Lorenzo Romar has agreed to a new 10-year contract through 2019-20.