"David Poole became one of the most influential voices in NASCAR during his 13 years covering the sport as a journalist and broadcaster. It's a great professional loss for NASCAR and the journalism profession. I have known David since our days as classmates at the University of North Carolina and worked closely with him during my time as media relations manager for R.J. Reynolds. David was well-respected within the NASCAR community. Our prayers go out to his wife, children and grandson."

From the Charlotte Observer/Thatsracin.com:

David Poole, an Observer reporter who became one of country's leading authorities on NASCAR, died of a heart attack this afternoon. He was 50. Poole had just returned from last week's race at Talledega, Ala. Poole, a Gastonia native, became the Observer's NASCAR writer 13 years ago. He hosted "The Morning Drive" show weekday mornings on Sirius NASCAR Radio. He was a four-time winner of the National Motorsports Press Association's George Cunningham Award as the organization's writer of the year. "He was the best in his field, there's no doubt about that," Observer editor Rick Thames said this afternoon. "Talk about guys who own their beat, that's what David did," said Observer sports editor Mike Persinger.