Chase for the Cup

A celebration of NASCAR and of Jimmie Johnson and behind Denny Hamlin head into the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Nov. 21, 2010.

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Crisler Center, Ann Arbor

Crisler Center, Ann Arbor

The Crisler Center is where all of University of Michigan’s men’s and women’s basketball teams play their home games. Built in 1967, the arena seats 12,721 spectators and is named for Herbert O. "Fritz" Crisler, the head football coach at Michigan from 1938 to 1947. 960 1280

Getty Images  

KFC YUM! Center, Louisville

KFC YUM! Center, Louisville

The KFC YUM! Center, located on the Ohio River Waterfront, is where the University of Louisville’s men’s and women’s basketball teams play their home games. The $238 million multipurpose arena seats 22,500 fans. After paying more than $13 million, Louisville-based YUM! Brands (KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell) received the naming rights for the arena. 960 1280

Getty Images  

The Rock, Ann Arbor

The Rock, Ann Arbor

Located at George Washington Park on Washtenaw Avenue and Hill Street, the Rock was brought to the park in 1932 to commemorate US President George Washington’s 200th birthday. More than 30,000 years old, the Rock features daily graffiti from various visitors and groups to mark special celebrations, including a potential NCAA championship victory! 960 1280

Lovelac7, Wikipedia Commons  

Churchill Downs, Louisville

Churchill Downs, Louisville

One of the most popular tourist attractions in Louisville is Churchill Downs, a hot destination for horseracing fans. The 2-week-long Kentucky Derby Festival culminates with “The Race for the Roses,” where lucky owner(s), a jockey and a 3-year-old thoroughbred will leave the track and arena as winners. 960 1280

Reuters  

Ann Arbor Skyline

Ann Arbor Skyline

As Michigan’s 6th largest city, Ann Arbor’s simple skyline includes the Tower Plaza and the Burton Memorial Tower -- it’s this city landscape that draws the most attention from visitors. We recommend taking a stroll through the local parks or through the beautifully tree-lined areas along Huron River, a 130-mile-long river that runs through the city. 960 1280

VisitAnnArbor.org  

Louisville Skyline

Louisville Skyline

Downtown Louisville is the largest central business district in Kentucky. The Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft, Louisville Glassworks, Louisville Slugger Field, Waterfront Park, Riverfront Plaza, KFC Yum! Center and Early Times Distillery are a few attractions travelers can visit in this neighborhood. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ale, Ann Arbor

Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ale, Ann Arbor

Beer is a hot commodity in Ann Arbor. Locals and tourists can choose from a few local brews, including the Arbor Brewing Company, Grizzly Peak Brewing Company, Blue Tractor and the nationally acclaimed Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales. Breweries in the nearby town of Ypsilanti also contribute to Ann Arbor's brew scene. 960 1280

Rodrick, Flickr  

Hot Brown, Louisville

Hot Brown, Louisville

Hot brown is an open-faced sandwich of turkey and bacon, covered in Mornay sauce and baked or broiled until the bread is crisp and the sauce begins to brown. A hotel chef, Fred Schmidt, introduced this alternative to ham and egg late-night suppers at Louisville’s Brown Hotel in 1926. 960 1280

Jeremy Brooks, Flickr  

Zingerman's Deli, Ann Arbor

Zingerman's Deli, Ann Arbor

Pull up a chair and enjoy a meal at Zingerman’s Deli, a popular eatery in Ann Arbor and throughout the Detroit metropolitan area. Foodies -- who don’t mind standing in long lines for overstuffed, sometimes pricey but delicious sandwiches -- are in for a treat. Their corn beef sandwich, pastrami sandwich and mac and cheese are popular items on the menu. And don’t forget to try one of their desserts like the Hunka Burnin’ Love Chocolate Cake. 960 1280

ulterior epicure, Flickr  

Lynn's Paradise Cafe, Louisville

Lynn's Paradise Cafe, Louisville

Welcome to Lynn’s Paradise Café. This restaurant serves American food with a Southern twist. The walnut-crusted chicken, fried-green tomato BLT, World Famous Bloody Mary and mint julep are several items on the menu worth trying if you stop in for a bite to eat. 960 1280

Jill M, Flickr  

The Ride, Ann Arbor

The Ride, Ann Arbor

More than 6 million people ride the public buses in Ann Arbor each year, according to the Ann Arbor Transit Authority. AATA has gone green with 27 hybrid electrical buses. The city has plans to increase the number of hybrid buses as the older buses are decommissioned. Travel green yourself as you make your way around Ann Arbor. 960 1280

Ian Freimuth, Flickr  

Transit Authority of River City, Louisville

Transit Authority of River City, Louisville

Green travel is starting to become the norm in Louisville. The Transit Authority of River City operates more than 240 public buses, including hybrid and all-electric buses, in Derby City and southern Indiana. TARC’s 17,700-square-foot maintenance and training building received Gold LEED Certification for its commitment to being eco-friendly. 960 1280

vxla, Flickr  

The Brown Jug, Ann Arbor

The Brown Jug, Ann Arbor

Don’t have tickets to a Wolverines game? Join students and other locals at The Brown Jug restaurant, located on South University Avenue and Church Street. Part of Ann Arbor and the University of Michigan’s history since 1936, The Brown Jug is the oldest college football trophy in the US. Every year, the Minnesota Gophers and Michigan Wolverines battle it out on the field to gain or maintain possession of the coveted award. 960 1280

dustin_j_williams, flickr  

Bungalow Joe's Bar and Grill, Louisville

Bungalow Joe's Bar and Grill, Louisville

Flat iron steak, Triple Crown chicken and bourbon-glazed salmon are just a few tasty items on the menu at Bungalow Joe’s Bar and Grill. Touted as the “premier family sports bar” in Louisville, this bar is the perfect spot to grab a beer and watch the Cardinals play. 960 1280

Getty Images  

2014 Winter Olympics

2014 Winter Olympics

The 2014 Winter Olympics and Paralympics, the 22nd Olympic Winter Games, will be held in Sochi, Russia, in February 2014. Sochi, located just north on the Black Sea coast, is Russia’s largest resort city. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Snowboarding in Sochi

Snowboarding in Sochi

Sochi is located near the Caucasus Mountains, making it a perfect destination for snowboarding, skiing and other Winter Olympic sports. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

2016 Summer Olympics

2016 Summer Olympics

In 2016, Rio de Janeiro will host the Summer Olympic Games of the XXXI Olympiad. The borough of Barra de Tijuca will host most of the venues of the Games. The rest will be located in 3 other zones: Copacabana Beach, Maracanã and Deodoro. Maracanã Stadium (pictured) is currently closed for renovations and upgrades in preparation for the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics and Paralympics. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Sugarloaf Mountain

Sugarloaf Mountain

While you’re in Rio for the 2016 Summer Olympics, make sure you check out some of the top tourist attractions, including a cable car ride to Sugarloaf Mountain. Take your best shot, and get great panoramic views of the bustling city below. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

2018 Winter Olympics

2018 Winter Olympics

For the 2018 Winter Olympics, head to Pyeongchang, located in South Korea’s Taebaek Mountains region. Alpensia ski resort (pictured) -- a tourist attraction with 6 slopes for skiing and snowboarding -- will be the focus of the 2018 Cultural Olympiad. A new, multipurpose concert hall will be built within the resort. 960 1280

Korea.net, Flickr  

Gyeongbok Palace

Gyeongbok Palace

South Korea has already set the wheels in motion to build an express rail line that will get tourists and locals from Seoul to Pyeongchang in about 50 minutes. The new rail line is scheduled to be completed in 2017. Travelers will have an opportunity to visit historic landmarks like Seoul’s Gyeongbok Palace, and enjoy the Winter Games at the InterContinental Alpensia Pyeongchang Resort. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Remembering the 2012 Summer Olympics

Remembering the 2012 Summer Olympics

Millions of athletes and spectators from around the world converged on London’s Olympic Park and Olympic Stadium (pictured) for the 2012 Summer Games. The stadium, surrounded by waterways on 3 sides, is the heart of the Olympic Park. Two spectacular opening and closing ceremonies for the Olympic and Paralympic Games were held here, as well as some of the most iconic sports events. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Tower Bridge Summer Festival

Tower Bridge Summer Festival

In addition to the Summer Games in London, locals and visitors enjoyed the Tower Bridge Summer Festival 2012, a season of events held at D&D London’s 4 Butlers Wharf restaurants. Spectators sat back and enjoyed a variety of special events while eating and drinking alfresco. 960 1280

VisitBritain/Craig Easton  

Changing of the Guard

Changing of the Guard

The show must go on! The Mall and half of St. James’s Park, near Buckingham Palace, shut down for the Olympic beach volleyball tournament, marathon and road cycling events. The Changing of the Guard on Horse Guards Parade took a new route and was held on different days at different times to preserve the royal ceremony and avoid a clash with the sports schedule. 960 1280

photolibrary.com  

Torch Relay

Torch Relay

The Olympic torch relay is one of the first signs that the Summer Olympic Games are only a few months away. Here, the ceremonial torch is passed on to another lucky Olympic torchbearer. The torch relay for the 2012 Summer Games in London started in Land’s End and concluded on Friday, July 27, 2012, at the Olympics opening ceremony. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Ironman World Championship Kona

Ironman World Championship Kona

The Ironman World Championship is the ultimate test of mind, body and spirit. Only the best triathletes converge on Kailua-Kona, HI, to embark on this 146.6-mile journey. Officially, there are 63 half-Ironman triathlons and 31 full-Ironman triathlons held around the world -- the biggest competitions are the Ironman World Championship, Ironman European Champion, Ironman US Championship and Ironman Asia-Pacific Championship. 960 1280

Bakke-Svensson/Ironman  

Ironman Lake Tahoe

Ironman Lake Tahoe

In California, Lake Tahoe’s Ironman competition begins with a 2-loop swim at historic Kings Beach. Athletes hop on their bikes and then finish competition with a run along one of the most scenic stretches in the world. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Ironman New Zealand

Ironman New Zealand

Head to Taupo, a 45-minute flight or an easy 3 to 4 hour drive from Auckland, New Zealand. This Ironman competition attracts international athletes from more than 35 countries. Taupo has become an increasingly popular venue for sporting events because of the town’s compact size, clean environment, central location and friendly community. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Ironman UK

Ironman UK

In the summer, hundreds of athletes head to Bolton, England, to challenge themselves in the Ironman UK. Triathletes must embark on a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and run 26.2 miles to the finish line. In case you didn’t know, Bolton is located 10 miles northwest of Manchester. 960 1280

Frances Barton, Wikimedia Commons  

Ironman 70.3 Panama

Ironman 70.3 Panama

Before running 13.1 miles through the Panama City’s Amador Causeway, triathletes must swim 1.2 miles in the Pacific Ocean -- at the entrance to the Panama Canal -- and bike 56 miles, crossing the Bridge of the Americas en route to the Pan-American Highway. 960 1280

Reuters  

Ironman Lake Placid

Ironman Lake Placid

Ironman Lake Placid is the 2nd oldest Ironman competition in North America. It’s usually held mid-summer in the Olympic Village of Lake Placid, NY, where more than 20,000 people converge on the town. Athletes take a 2.4-mile swim in Mirror Lake, a challenging 112-mile bike ride through the Adirondacks Mountains and a 26.2-mile run, circling the downtown area 4 times. 960 1280

Brian Desrosiers, Flickr  

Ironman Melbourne

Ironman Melbourne

The Ironman Asia-Pacific Championship in Melbourne -- the sporting capital of Australia -- is usually held in March. With the spectacular city as the backdrop, athletes take a 2.4-mile swim in Frankston, a 117-mile bike ride on the EastLink Tollway and a 26-mile run along Port Philip Bay to finish the grueling challenge. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Ironman 70.3 Racine

Ironman 70.3 Racine

If a full Ironman is too much, then head to Racine, WI -- located 30 miles south of Milwaukee -- to participate in the half Ironman. Triathletes must swim 1.2-mile along North Beach in Lake Michigan, bike 56 miles through the rolling countryside of Racine County and run 13.1 miles through the Zoo and surrounding Lake Michigan coastline. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Ironman Los Cabos

Ironman Los Cabos

Los Cabos -- located at the tip of the Baja Peninsula in Baja California, Mexico -- is known as a great place to relax and unwind, but on March 17, 2013, athletes will converge on the resort town for its first Ironman competition. Nearly 1,500 participants from more than 50 countries are expected for the inaugural event. The course will include a swim in the Sea of Cortes, and then a bike ride and run along a 20-mile corridor between Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Ironman Wisconsin

Ironman Wisconsin

In Madison, WI, more than 45,000 spectators line the Ironman course through Wisconsin farm land and the downtown streets of state capital. The finish line is the most recognizable of all the US Ironman events; it is located in front of the Wisconsin state capitol in the heart of Madison. 960 1280

joelrivlin, Flickr  

Ironman Cozumel

Ironman Cozumel

Cozumel -- located in Quintana Roo, Mexico -- is often a port of call for many cruise lines, but this fun travel destination is also host to the Ironman Cozumel and Ironman 70.3 Cozumel. Like many Ironman competitions, the Cozumel Ironman awards a predetermined number of slots that will allow athletes to participate in the “granddaddy” of all Ironman challenges, the Ironman World Championship in Kona, HI. 960 1280

Thinkstock  

Ironman Arizona

Ironman Arizona

Ironman Arizona, set in Tempe, begins with a swim in the Tempe Town Lake, followed by a challenging 3-loop bike course through the Sonoran Desert and then competition wraps up with a spectator-friendly run around Tempe Town Lake and Papago Park. 960 1280

Jan Miller, Flickr  

Ironman Coeur d'Alene

Ironman Coeur d'Alene

Welcome to Coeur d’Alene, the 2nd largest metropolitan area in Idaho. While wiping the sweat from their brow, athletes take a dip in beautiful Lake Coeur d’Alene and a become eyewitnesses to spectacular views of rural northern Idaho by bike and on foot. 960 1280

Getty Images  

Ironman Louisville

Ironman Louisville

In August, the Ironman Louisville, KY, takes triathletes on a course through some of the city’s most scenic areas, including Waterfront Park, Oldham and Henry Counties and the city of LaGrange. Their journey ends with a finish line celebration at Fourth Street Live, an exciting entertainment and retail district in downtown Louisville. 960 1280

Timothy J, Flickr  

Ironman Western Australia

Ironman Western Australia

Busselton -- a 2.5-hour drive from Perth, Australia -- hosts 2 Ironman competitions, Ironman 70.3 Busselton and Ironman Western Australia. Ironman 70.3 Busselton is held in October as part of a big festival, which includes the Kids Triathlon. Ironman Western Australia is held in December, when athletes swim Busselton Jetty, bike through Tuart Forest and run along Geographe Bay and through the heart of Busselton Township. 960 1280

  

Ironman Switzerland

Ironman Switzerland

More than 2,000 athletes compete in the waters of Lake Zurich during the swimming leg of the Ironman Switzerland Triathlon in Zurich. In the 2nd leg of the race participants hit a challenging bike course with a breathtaking view of the Swiss Alps before ending the competition with a run on the shore of the lake. 960 1280

Reuters  

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