Saturday, September 29, 2007

Tony Stewart spoke an Expletive!!

Tony Stewart is in trouble again when on Saturday morning, he used an expletive during a live broadcast on ESPN2.

Stewart used the language with a photographer when telling him to stop filming him. Stewart was being filmed during NASCAR Nextel Cup practice and the language was broadcast live. (Whoops)

A classic quote from a professional broadcasting organization: ESPN does not feel the need to use a tape delay for a broadcast "when working with professional athletes,".

Hmm, I guess they haven't been watching too many race broadcasts this and last year.

scenedaily.com

Kyle Busch's Busch Car fails Post Race Inspection

Late Saturday night, NASCAR announced that Busch's race-winning car had failed post-race inspection. Officials seized the intake manifold from the car and were expected to announce penalties, if any, early in the coming week.

Busch, who restarted 25th after he was penalized for speeding on Lap 90 of 200, passed Kenseth for the lead on Lap 177, then had to work hard as Kenseth tried desperately to repay the favor in a fender-to-fender duel in the final three laps.

See all the details at thatsracin.com

Busch Race - Yellow Transportation 300

After overcoming a speeding penalty on pit road, Kyle Busch fought his back to the front to duke it out with Matt Kenseth in the closing laps and put on a great show with the 2nd closest finish this year in the Busch Series.

Though I was expecting the usual D-Oval racing from Kansas, it turned out to be a pretty good Busch race to watch today with 2, 3 and 4 wide racing throughout the day.

I admit, I like the restarts after a caution period, and that probably contributed greatly to the amount of racing I saw.

Carl Edwards got rubbed the wrong way, literally, by Matt Kenseth in the early going that took Edwards' LF tire out, and then there was nothing but troubles all day dealing with the after affects of the flat / shredding tire, to the point, that after making repairs in the garage, when Carl came back out on the track, ended up nosing hard into the wall, ending his day.

He was noticeably upset with Kenseth, but said he hopes this can be put behind them. In his post wreck interview, he ended it by looking at the camera and saying it is really hard being this mad with camera's in his face!

Unofficially, (And right now, that is important today), Kyle Busch won the Yellow Transportation 300, followed by
Matt Kenseth,
Casey Mears,
Clint Bowyer,
Jamie McMurray,
Denny Hamlin,
Paul Menard (Who was pretty competitive most of the day)
Jeff Burton,
Brian Vickers &
Greg Biffle rounding out the top 10.

See the rest of the results at nascar.com

Ryan Newman's Qualifying Run Disallowed


When you tune in on Sunday to the LifeLock 400 at Kansas Speedway looking for Ryan Newman to be starting up in the front row, you won't be seeing him there. Rather, he will be starting in the back of the pack.

After qualifying 2nd, Ryan Newman's Dodge failed inspection because the roof was too low.

This will move Kenseth up to the front row. This is a small tidbit in this article at nascar.com, titled Johnson wins another pole with quick lap at Kansas.

Friday, September 28, 2007

NASCAR Ratings - Sept 22-23

Last week, the Busch Series ranked 6th behind a couple of college football games, and the Cup series on Sunday the 23rd, took it to 5th behind a few football games!

See the details at tvweek.com

Villeneuve to debut at 'Dega

With former Formula One and Indy 500 champ Jacques Villeneuve will attempt to make his Nextel Cup debut next Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway, and he's pretty excited about it but Jeff Gordon has concerns with someone starting their first Cup race at Talladega, and in one of the Chase for the Cup venues to boot.

Can't blame him.. Restrictor plate races are tricky beasts, and if one isn't acclimated to the kind of skill needed to run that, it could be a very hairy proposition.

See the article at nascar.com

Race Lineup for LifeLock 400 at Kansas Speedway

The top 10 qualifiers were

1 Jimmie Johnson
2 Matt Kenseth
3 Scott Riggs
4 Jeff Gordon
5 Denny Hamlin
6 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
7 Greg Biffle
8 Kyle Busch
9 Martin Truex Jr.
10 Clint Bowyer

Those who did not qualify were:
A.J. Allmendinger*, Ward Burton, Brian Vickers & Jon Wood

See the entire field at nascar.com

North Wilkesboro Speedway Sale Status

North Wilkesboro Speedway in North Carolina - had been mothballed after the 1996 racing season.

But rebirth for the speedway could be right around the corner if a land developer gets his way. Worth Mitchell, 33, says he's got a plan in place to buy the track within six months.

Mitchell says he's still looking for a few partners and ideas, like opening up a neighboring hotel and retail center and host local concerts and festivals at the track as well as racing.

See the entire article at ocala.com for more details.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Robby Gordon hired a New Crew Chief

Robby Gordon Motorsports has hired Peter Sospenzo as crew chief for the No. 7 NASCAR Nextel Cup entry, according to a team release.

Veteran Sospenzo started the season working with the No. 13 Ginn Racing team and driver Joe Nemechek. He has been without a team since that group folded as part of the Ginn merger with Dale Earnhardt Inc. in July.

See the rest at scenedaily.com

The Hamlin and Petty Thing - Respect

by Bruce Simmons (brusimm)

I keep hearing and reading how the young guns don't respect the veterans of the series, being as how the Denny Hamlin - Kyle Petty thing seems to be sparking this debate.

From what little I did see of the on-track deal at Dover between them, they both went to move up the track. Kyle to get out of the way, Denny to pass him. Good intentions, bad timing. And this being Kyle's 2nd incident of the day, it seemed his tolerances were stretched thin already. If Denny did call him over to talk about it, Kyle didn't do very well representing the veterans with his conversational skills.

As far as respect goes, when someone stops using words and violates your physical space, if you don't stand up to that kind of treatment, you are only inviting more of it, no matter who it is and no one wants that.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

NASCAR Sprint Cup 2008 Schedule

Date - Site
Feb. 9 - Budweiser Shootout, Daytona International Speedway*
Feb. 17 - Daytona International Speedway
Feb. 24 - California Speedway
March 2 - Las Vegas Motor Speedway
March 9 - Atlanta Motor Speedway
March 16 - Bristol Motor Speedway
break
March 30 - Martinsville Speedway
April 6 - Texas Motor Speedway
April 12 - Phoenix International Raceway
break
April 27 - Talladega Superspeedway
May 3 - Richmond International Raceway
May 10 - Darlington Raceway
May 17 - NASCAR Sprint All-Star Challenge, Lowe's Motor Speedway*
May 25 - Lowe's Motor Speedway
June 1 - Dover International Speedway
June 8 - Pocono Raceway
June 15 - Michigan International Speedway
June 22 - Infineon Raceway
June 29 - New Hampshire International Speedway
July 5 - Daytona International Speedway
July 12 - Chicagoland Speedway
break
July 27 - Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Aug. 3 - Pocono Raceway
Aug. 10 - Watkins Glen International
Aug. 17 - Michigan International Speedway
Aug. 23 - Bristol Motor Speedway
Aug. 31 - California Speedway
Sept. 6 - Richmond International Raceway
Sept. 14 - New Hampshire International Speedway
Sept. 21 - Dover International Speedway
Sept. 28 - Kansas Speedway
Oct. 5 - Talladega Superspeedway
Oct. 11 - Lowe's Motor Speedway
Oct. 19 - Martinsville Speedway
Oct. 26 - Atlanta Motor Speedway
Nov. 2 - Texas Motor Speedway
Nov. 9 - Phoenix International Raceway
Nov. 16 - Homestead-Miami Speedway
*Non-points events

The 36-race schedule begins with the Daytona 500 on Feb. 17 and ends Nov. 16 at Homestead-Miami Speedway

The major shifts had already been announced, namely that the first five races will be run consecutively, unlike this year when Cup teams got a week off after the season's second race, at California Speedway. (That means we, the fans, get it 5 weeks in a row straight!!)

More details are over at scenedaily.com

btw: The Daytona 500 is 143 days away.. not that I'm counting!
brucesimmons.org

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Edwards Fined, Roush to Appeal

Carl Edwards and the No. 99 Roush Fenway Racing team have been penalized 25 points after Edwards' race-winning Ford failed postrace inspection following Sunday's Dodge Dealers 400 at Dover International Speedway.

Edwards drops from third in the Chase For The Nextel Cup standings to sixth after the 25-point driver penalty.

Roush Fenway Racing plans to appeal the penalty, the team said in a release. - ..."we are being penalized for a violation that actually impaired the car's performance."... (I guess that says it all there.)

See the details at scenedaily.com

Chicagoland Night Races in 2008

Chicagoland Speedway officials today announced plans to install lights for the 2008 season and will host two night NASCAR races next season.

The 1.5-mile, D-shaped oval will become the 10th NASCAR Nextel Cup facility capable of holding night races.

The NASCAR race weekend at Chicagoland Speedway in 2008 will feature two night races - the Busch Series race on Friday, July 11, followed by the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Saturday, July 12.

See more at .... scenedaily.com

Kenny Schrader Back in the 21 at Kansas

Due to a last minute lineup change, Ken Schrader will once again be back behind the wheel of the No. 21 Little Debbie Ford for the third straight week this weekend at Kansas Speedway, as the Wood Brothers/JTG team loads up for the Lifelock 400. The Wood Brothers/JTG team will also be fielding a second entry for the race with Jon Wood set to make just his second NASCAR NEXTEL Cup start at the 1.5-mile track. The primary sponsor for Wood will be McKee Foods, parent company of Little Debbie snack cakes.

... woodbrothersjtg.com

Upcoming NASCAR Kansas TV Weekend


Coors Light - The Official Beer of NASCAR


Coors Brewing Co. officials and NASCAR have announced a multiyear partnership, making Coors Light the official beer of NASCAR, according to a news release.

The five-year sponsorship agreement gives Coors Brewing Co. category exclusivity starting with the 2008 NASCAR season. The preseason Budweiser Shootout will remain the same since Budweiser is the official beer of Daytona International Speedway, according to a track official.

See more details at scenedaily.com


Monday, September 24, 2007

The #55 Gasman - Update

A little slow in coming, but on the telecast they noted, if you missed it, that he was treated and released from the local hospital.

UPDATE on the Update: (9/25/07)
Over on michaelwaltrip.com: He was able to fly home with the team after the event and will have further evaluation by his physician in North Carolina. His status is listed as day-to-day.

Marcos Ambros - A New Baby Girl!

Marcos Ambrose’s decision to pass up an opportunity to make his NASCAR Nextel Cup debut at Dover today was justified when his wife Sonja gave birth to their second child at 3pm in Charlotte, North Carolina today.

Sonja went into labour at 8am this morning and was driven to hospital where Adelaide Elizabeth Ambrose arrived at 3.04pm weighting 7lbs 11 ounces.

http://www.marcosambrose.com/latest_news.asp

A John Force Update

In contrast to earlier reports on John Force's injuries, Team spokesman Elon Werner said the 58-year-old Force broke his left ankle and his left wrist and suffered a severe abrasion to his right knee.

See the details at sportsillustrated

Hamlin vs Petty - The New Feud

If you were wathcing the Dodge Dealers 400 Sunday, you probably saw Kyle Petty get dumped in an altercation with Denny Hamlin.

I've read where it's stated that Hamlin lifted Petty's rear end off the ground (FoxSports), but I thought these cars fit nose to tail and that can't be done anymore?

What I did see, I missed the back end getting lifted off the ground, but it looked like Hamlin started going high, around Petty, and at the same time, Kyle Petty started going high, for what ever reason, and the rest is history! A racing oops!

But then when Petty comes over to Denny's car in the garage and smacks his visor down on him while he's still in the car motivated our flu beleagured driver and started unsnapping and got out of his car, but the teams kept the 2 volatile fluids apart! As far as that little thing goes, Denny is quoted saying:

"Don't smack me on the helmet, you smack me on the helmet I'm going to punch you in the face — bottom line," Hamlin said. "I'd like for him to call me some time this week before next week...you don't come to my car, you don't come to my pit, you meet me somewhere else and we'll settle it, but I have the utmost respect for Kyle but don't lay your hands on my head.

"I didn't say one word to him (Petty) in the garage. All I just said was, 'Come here and let me talk to you about it.' He chose to slap my helmet. You know, in hindsight, I should have grabbed his throat."

Zoinks, who'd a thunk Denny's got some moxie!?

See the whole article at FoxSports or ThatsRacin

Ganassi Chomping at the Bit Waiting for Franchitti

Like everyone else, Chip Ganassi is looking to change up the NASCAR field with a driver from another series altogether, the Indy Racing League's driver: Dario Franchitti.

As soon as Dario Franchitti receives his release from Andretti Green Racing, team owner Chip Ganassi says the Indy Racing League champ will be ready to begin the next chapter in his motor sports career — most likely behind the wheel of the No. 40 Dodge.

Apparently Franchitti has a signed contract with Ganassi for 2008! Let's see how he pans out compared to Montoya's semi successful endeavors and Sam Hornish's vain struggles to even make it in a Busch race.

More details at FoxSports

Dale Jr's New Sponsor - AMP Energy by Mountain Dew - A Test

A NASCAR Sponsor Test, Product Review by Bruce Simmons

Since AMP Energy drink by Mountain Dew is sponsoring our favorite driver, Dale Earnhardt Jr., I thought I'd give it a swig test and see what it's about. The site has the car on the splash page.. cool and they have a count down to their first race and a few extra's like this image abailable for download. Now that's how you sponsor a driver!)

See the rest about Dale Jr's Sponsor over on my new site.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Edwards Car Fails Post Race Inspection

Carl Edwards' Roush Fenway Racing Ford failed postrace inspection Sunday at Dover International Speedway.

The right rear of his car fell below the 1/2-inch tolerance for height, NASCAR said. The victory most likely will stand, but Edwards' team is expected to be penalized later this week.

Team owner Jack Roush said that there were no changes made to the right side of the car and that he believes NASCAR will find the car is bent. He added it was his understanding that the right-rear was 3/8ths of an inch low, which doesn't make sense to him.

See the rest of the article at SceneDaily

The Current Chase Standings, as of Dover


Current Nextel Cup Chase Standings, after the Dodge Dealers 400 at Dover International Speedway! (Screen shot from www.scenedaily.com)

Dodge Dealers 400 - An Attrition Test

by Bruce Simmons

Carl Edwards won one heck of an attrition test in the Dodge Dealers 400 at Dover International Speedway.

Everyone thought New Hampshire was going to be the mixer, but Dover turned to look more like a post Bristol race rather than a 1 mile track! 13 Cautions, 9 leaders with 14 lead changes and 66 laps under caution.

Denny Hamlin showed his cards early, but didn’t hold on to the lead as Matt Kenseth came to the front early on after that and showed he had this track under control, until he blew up with 26 laps to go and Carl Edwards took over from there as he led the field through a few caution periods, with Greg Biffle coming in 2nd, Dale Earnhardt Jr in 3rd, Mark Martin 4th and Kyle Busch 5th.

This was a hard race on the Cup Contenders.
Jeff Burton (7th) slow at the front end of the race;
Tony Stewart (9th) off the lead lap;
Clint Bowyer (12th) accident;
Martin Truex Jr (13th) caught up in the Kurt Busch pile up;
Jimmie Johnson (14th) flat tires;
Kevin Harvick(20th), flat tires;
Kurt Busch (28th) loses a tire and wrecks in the closing laps;
Denny Hamlin (38th) accident;

There were only 6 cars on the lead lap at the end of the race.
Unofficial Results

As far as the Chase standings go:
Jeff Gordon assumed the lead with 5340 pts
Tony Stewart 2nd with 2 pts back.
Carl Edwards 3rd, with 3 pts back.
Jimmie Johnson 4th, 4 pts behind the leader.
Kyle Busch 5th, -10 pts.
Clint Bowyer 6th, -18 pts.
Followed by Martin Truex Jr, Jeff Burton, Kevin Harvick, Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch & Denny Hamlin.

Right now, it’s pretty a tight points race up front! 8 races to go!
Unofficial Standings

John Force - Alert and Conscious

14-time champion John Force, the name synomynous with NHRA Drag Racing, was alert and conscious after suffering two broken legs and a broken arm in a nasty collision Sunday with fellow legend Kenny Bernstein at the O'Reilly NHRA Fall Nationals at Texas Motorplex outisde of Dallas. (He was probably cussing up a storm and telling them to hurry up, he's in the next round of quals!!)

Force was airlifted to Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas for further treatment. Their Funny Cars got together just as they crossed the finish line with Bernstein drifting over into Force's lane after clipping the final timing cone.

See the details at NHRA.com

Here's a Google "search link" for the latest news search for John Force

Kvapil Wins Truck Race

Travis Kvapil won the Smith's Las Vegas 350, beating out Johnny Benson, Jon Wood, Terry Cook and Erik Darnell for the top 5 spots.

nascar.com

There's a write up at sportingnews.com

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Denny Hamlin,with the Flu, Wins the Busch Race

After taking IV fluids before the race, Denny Hamlin, with the Flu, dominated the RoadLoans.com 200 Busch Series race at Dover while the race had a lot of cautions to tie the record for the number of cautions.

He was followed by Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth, Mike Bliss and Reed Sorenson rounded out the top 5 finishers.

See the unnofficial results at nascar.com and a write up at thatsracin.com

Busch Race - Denny Hamlin has the Flu

by Bruce Simmons

Denny Hamlin is in the 20 car for the Busch Series race, but Kyle Busch is standing by in his firesuit because Denny is fighting the flue..

The reporter from ESPN 2 noted how Denny looked bad and sweaty... but Denny thinks he can do the deed today!!

What a trooper.

R Gordon misses Busch Drivers Meeting

Robby Gordon will have to give up the 24th starting spot in the RoadLoans.com 200 today for missing the Busch Series pre-race drivers meeting Saturday afternoon.

He will have to start the race in the back of the field in his Brewco Motorsports Ford.

scenedaily.com

Busch Race LIne Up

RACE LINEUP for the RoadLoans.com 200 at Dover International Speedway

The top 10 drivers for the start of the Busch Series race:

1 Greg Biffle
2 Carl Edwards
3 Dave Blaney
4 Denny Hamlin
5 Jason Leffler
6 Reed Sorenson
7 Martin Truex Jr.
8 Jamie McMurray
9 Casey Atwood
10 David Reutimann

Petty Enterprises is NOT Merging with Anyone!!

Petty Enterprises is not merging with Gillett Evernham Motorsports.

But the Petty family and the Gillett family are exploring the possibility of a partnership, not a merge.

... there's still lots of questions that need to be answered - among them, who would "lose" a team - before a deal could be reached.

Petty said Friday that his family's company needs a partner to remain competitive and he is further along in talks with George Gillett than any other potential partner in the past.

Check out the details at scenedaily

Jeremy McGrath Leaves JR Motorsports

What?!

JR Motorsports development driver Jeremy McGrath has left the team and has joined a Late Model team on the West Coast, closer to his home. (The man is not thinking clearly in my opinion, but hey, let's see what else there is to read.)

"He wanted to drive a stock car, but he didn't want to get into the traveling. "And he didn't want to relocate his family. Looking at those two components, that means he probably needed to do it on the West Coast." (Well, ok, that makes sense, sort of.)

See the whole article at scenedaily

NASCAR IMAGES Revs Up it's Business

Here are some tidbits from an article I came across:

With television ratings and attendance for races down slightly, the league is looking to NASCAR Images, the entertainment production and marketing division of the motor sports behemoth, to bridge the gaps.

NASCAR Images, the entertainment company that repurposes NASCAR content into TV, film, home video and licensed consumer products, is completing its first full season wholly owned and run by parent company NASCAR Digital Entertainment.

The compound is three times larger than the Super Bowl's broadcast setup and delivers signals for Fox, ESPN, TNT, DirecTV, Speed and Sirius. In addition, the company scouts new opportunities to create exposure for NASCAR to find more fans while keeping longtime audiences connected to the brand.

DVD successes such as "The History of NASCAR," new shows including Biography's "Driven to Win" and an Emmy and record ratings for "Dale" on CMT have all counted as coups for the organization. Heading into next season, even more race coverage is in the works.

NASCAR Digital Images was created in 1999, the year media rights were consolidated by NASCAR. At the same time, NASCAR and Fox purchased Sunbelt Video in Charlotte, N.C., and turned it into NASCAR Images to serve as a production company for additional content.

To read the rest of the pretty lengthy article, go to TVWeek. It's a pretty interesting read.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Jimmie Johnson Nabs the Dover Pole

by Bruce Simmons

Keeping his chase efforts strong and alive, Jimmie Johnson snags his 2nd pole position in three races for the Dodge Dealers 400 at Dover International Speedway, followed by Juan Montoya, Denny Hamlin, and Kurt Busch!

Row 1: Jimmie Johnson & Juan Montoya. Chevrolet, Dodge
Row 2: Denny Hamlin & Kurt Busch. Chevrolet, Dodge
Row 3: Martin Truex Jr. & Scott Riggs. Chevrolet, Dodge
Row 4: Kevin Harvick & Bobby Labonte. Chevrolet, Dodge
Row 5: Greg Biffle & Matt Kenseth. Ford & Ford
(Pretty trippy pattern in the first 4 rows, Chevy on the inside, Dodge on the outside.)

Those who did not get in the field for Sunday are Ward Burton, Scott Wimmer, Sam Hornish Jr., Kevin Lepage, Dave Blaney & Jeremy Mayfield.

See the entire field at nascar.com

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Eury Jr Headed to Hendrick

Tony Eury Jr. will leave Dale Earnhardt Inc. for Hendrick Motorsports earlier than expected, team officials confirmed on Thursday.

Eury, who has been Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s car or crew chief for all but one season since the two broke into the Nextel Cup Series in 2000, will step down after the Oct. 7 race at Talladega Superspeedway.

Read the rest at ESPN

M and M's to Gibbs in 2008

Jim Utter, over at ThatsRacin.com, writes that Mars Inc., which has sponsored both Nextel Cup teams at Robert Yates Racing this season, is finalizing a deal to become the sponsor of driver Kyle Busch in the Toyota 18 car at Joe Gibbs Racing next season. (That was weird to write)

thatsracin

Off Subject: Kevin Everett Update

Kevin Everett will be transferred to a Houston hospital to begin the next phase of his rehabilitation.

And doctors said Thursday they believe he will be walking within weeks -- perhaps sooner. (Awesome News!)

Read the rest of the article at sports.yahoo

New Look Coming - I think

I'm looking (Or thinking about) to pick a new template to use for this news posting site, so if things look different one day, that would be me. Hopefully, I don't break the web doing it!

Earnhardt Jr - Several Busch Races in 2008


It's been reported that Dale Earnhardt Jr will be running a few Busch Series races for Hendricks Motorsports next season.


"It will be around seven or so," Earnhardt Elledge said Wednesday. "We haven't identified where exactly and we haven't identified all of the sponsor partners."


See the rest at scenedaily

Matt Kenseth - A Short Interview


Matt Kenseth is Chase-berth perfect. Four times the Chase has been held, four times Kenseth has been included. He answered some questions this week about the Chase and racing over at the Kansas City Star

Dover TV Schedule and Standings

This weekends upcoming TV schedule,
(snapshot, courtesy www.NASCAR.com)


The current top 12, going into Dover.
(Snapshot courtesy of www.SceneDaily.com)

Aaron Fike Update

Former NASCAR driver Aaron Fike appeared in Warren County Court on Wednesday on drug charges stemming from his arrest in an amusement park parking lot.

Fike, 24, of Cornelius, N.C., did not enter a plea, and no trial date was set, Warren County Prosecutor Rachel Hutzel said. Fike remained free on an own-recognizance bond.

See the rest at
foxsports.com

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The History of the 88 Car - A Tidbit

by Bruce Simmons

With the advent of Dale Earnhardt Jr going to the Hendricks 88 car for the 2008 season, I looked up the history of the 88 number and the list of drivers is interesting:

2008 Dale Earnhardt Jr!!
2007 Ricky Rudd
1996 - 2005 Dale Jarrett
1995 Ernie Irvan
1995 Gary Bradberry
1994 P.J. Jones
1992 Mike Wallace
1992 Jeff Fuller
1991 Buddy Baker
1990 Larry Pearson
1989 Jimmy Spencer
1989 Joe Ruttman
1988 - 89 Greg Sacks
1988 Morgan Shepherd
1988 Rick Mast
1987 - 88 Buddy Baker
1987 Irv Hoerr
1986 Buddy Baker
1986 Al Unser
1986 Mike Potter
1985 Buddy Baker
1984 Rusty Wallace
1983 Donnie Allison
1983 Geoffrey Bodine
1982 Bobby Allison
1981 Ricky Rudd
1975 to 1980 Darrell Waltrip
1975 Donnie Allison
1975 Richard Childress

Here's a link to an article covering more details about the number: SceneDaily

Dale Earnhardt Jr - The 88 Car and His Sponsors


Fox Sports, Hendrick Motorsports/Autostock/Associated Press // photo from Fox Sports, HMS AutoStock


by Bruce Simmons

September 19, 2007; Watching the Live Feed on NASCAR.com, from Dallas Texas,

The most fan and industry coveted announcement to date has occurred today, in regards to Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s new sponsor and car number.

With the stage back drop is adorned with Mountain Dew, AMP Energy Drink & National Guard logos and with Jr winning his first Busch race, and his first Cup race at Texas, it is only fitting the announcement be made in the Dallas Convention Center in Dallas, Texas.

It is OFFICIAL:
Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s car number will be the 88, and it will carry the sponsors of Mountain Dew, AMP Energy Drink, and National Guard.


Rick Hendrick said they had decals made up in silly numbers to throw everyone off and was having his fun with the media and what not!

As far as the car number goes, keep in mind that car #’s are handed out by NASCAR to the teams, they are not sold. In fact, a number can change teams via what ever arrangements between the teams are made, whether that be painting someone’s house, or exchanging funds in one way or another, but they aren't bought or sold from NASCAR because they are NASCAR's to do what they please with.

I've already ordered my diecast from racingUSA.com, where they are offering free shipping on the pre-orders!!!

NASCAR should lower Price of Busch Series Sponsorship

NASCAR might be better off requiring less media advertising from a potential sponsor to replace Busch for NASCAR's main support series, Anheuser-Busch Vice President Tony Ponturo said Tuesday.

Ponturo said his company has no interest in reconsidering its decision to not renew its sponsorship contract of the Busch Series - a sponsorship that has lasted 26 seasons.

"ESPN, I know, is a good partner, [and] they pay high rights fees, but you've got to make it affordable to people. They'll figure that out."

"We have a proposal sitting on their desk as we speak," Ponturo said. "So we'll see. Everything is in negotiation. It is our intent to continue. Like all deals, they see what the landscape looks like.

"It hasn't been accepted yet, but it is our intent to continue, and they have an offer in front of them."


See all the details at Scenedaily

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Burn-Out, Bowl-Off charity bowling tournament

On Thursday night, Sept 20, 2007 night, numerous NCTS drivers, teams and even NASCAR officials will go head-to-head in the “Burn-Out, Bowl-Off” charity bowling tournament hosted by the South Point Hotel & Casino at the South Point Bowling Center in Las Vegas.

The charity bowling tournament, which begins at 7:30 p.m., will benefit Speedway Children’s Charities.

The “Burn-Out, Bowl-Off” will start at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday night. Five member teams from various NCTS organizations will compete for the top score in two games. Fans are encouraged to come out and support their favorite drivers and teams. Drivers scheduled to appear include Gaughan, defending NCTS champion Todd Bodine, current points leader Ron Hornaday, Johnny Benson, David Green, Scott Lynch, Brett Thompson and more.

A $10 donation to the charity will get fans a free ticket to Saturday night’s NCTS race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Red Bull Leaving Toyota? NASCAR series in Canada

It's a good question, and one that only time will answer for us, but according to an article over at the Toronto Sun says: Sun Media has been told that Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz has been in discussions to switch manufacturers from Toyota next year.

Those in the know say that Mateschitz has been deeply disappointed about the results of both the No. 83 and No. 84 Red Bull Toyotas in the team's inaugural Cup season and he's not pointing the finger at either A.J. Allmendinger or Brian Vickers.

This could be an interesting swap of power houses with Gibbs climbing on board, and Red Bull slipping out of the Toyota garage.

See the whole article at torontosun.com

The article touches on A.J. Allmendinger frustration, and:
The inaugural season of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series wraps up this Sunday with the Dodge Dealers of Ontario Dodge Charger 250 presented by Allied Steel Buildings at Kawartha Speedway in Fraserville.



When did they (NASCAR) slip that series in under the door? Ah, according to Wikipedia, NASCAR bought CASCAR out (I remember those talks that started in '04.. just forgot about them!) and it also indicates the series winner will compete in the All Star event in Irwindale Speedway in CA.

Check out the website at content.nascarregionalracing

Tidbits from Today - 9-18-07

Robby Gordon is helping out Marcos Ambrose once more by entering him in the No. 77 in this weekend's Dodge Dealers 400 NASCAR Nextel Cup race at Dover International Speedway.
(scenedaily.com)

But Ambrose has turned that down, being that his wife is expecting this weekend.
news.com.au
~
~

And over at the Winston Salem Journal, a few trinkets of curiosity were noted:

Earnhardt is expected to announce Pepsi’s Amp energy drink as his new sponsor Wednesday; but Jeff Gordon hinted that it might be otherwise:
“Have you tried the Jeff Gordon Energy Drink by Pepsi? There’s a huge investment there.”
~

On Staten Island, that plot of land that NASCAR had hoped to build the New York City Speedway on will apparently become a huge trucking center.
~

Night-time racing lights are expected to be installed at the International Speedway Corp.'s Chicagolands track.
~

One reason for Doug Yates’ decision to pull the plug on that merger with Newman-Haas was that Newman-Haas hemmed and hawed too long when Yates was trying to sign J.J. Yeley for 2008. (Well, we see where that went! Yeley took a a ride with the new Jeff Moorad-Tom Garfinkel team!)
~

NASCAR’s Brian France is expected to give the regular season winner a few more points for the start of the 2008 championship Chase. (Sigh.. another modification.)
~

Greg Biffle on the COT: “But you can’t pass anybody because everybody is the same speed. But that’s what NASCAR wants - for everybody to be the same.” (Ouch, but it is seemingly becoming true. Is it not?)
~

For the Steve Park fans - Steve Park will be in a car for the Busch East Division at Dover this weekend. http://www.steve-park.com/

A Nutty Inmate sues Jeff Gordon

An inmate with very little to do.. (Which makes sense, being in jail and all) has filed a federal lawsuit against Jeff Gordon .. for the following:

(Please be sure you are seated, and in a safe spot when reading this.)

Jeff Gordon has secret plans to put wings on the No. 24 car and fly it into Fort Knox.
The car time travels.
Gordon has a secret trap door in the car to "drop tic tacs and oil" on the racetrack,
Jeff Gordon stole the talking Trans Am, Kitt, from the television show "Knight Rider."
(I wonder how Kitt would look with the Dupont Colors?)

Apparently this inmate, Jonathan Lee Riches, is a prolific and litigious inmate in South Carolina and calls himself the "Litigator Crusader,". He's launched about 31 lawsuits like this, and BELIEVE IT NOT, so far, 17 of his suits have been thrown out. Imagine that!

There are a lot more details at thatsracin.com regarding this fine citizen, and the impact he's having on inmate rights to file lawsuits.

If you dare, you can go check out the Wikipedia entry on the fellow.

This is a fascinating way to become popular, that's for sure...
Hey, the sky is blue! Who ya' gonna sue!?

Jeff Gordon, Dupont and you, the Fans




According to a snippet I came across at Sports Business Journal:

ESPN Sports Poll data collected from 2001 to this year shows that DuPont is normally among the top 10 sponsors named when NASCAR fans are asked to name three sponsors.

And in another article over on Sports Business Journal, they note how Dupont has been with Jeff Gordon for 15 years!! Wow.. Time flies, doesn't it?

The article noted:
"Hospitality and entertainment are at the core of DuPont’s sponsorship, which has been revered as a model for business-to-business activation in NASCAR for most of the 15 years it has been the primary sponsor on Jeff Gordon’s No. 24 car. The relationship with Gordon through Hendrick Motorsports is the longest active sponsor-driver-owner partnership in NASCAR.

There are indications that DuPont, a chemical giant with 62,000 employees and $27 billion in annual sales, will continue using NASCAR as its most visible platform in the U.S. (a Formula One associate deal is its only other sports sponsorship).

The cost of DuPont’s sponsorship hasn’t been disclosed, but most high-end sponsorships approach $20 million a year. DuPont’s price is set through 2010, Anderson said, so it won’t be affected by Hendrick’s recent signing of Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Because the sponsorship is primarily business-to-business, Gordon, one of the most recognizable drivers in the sport, does relatively few commercials for DuPont, nor does the company do any on-site mobile marketing, a staple of activation for many of the consumer-based brands in NASCAR.

“Much of our return is measured in soft dollars, everything from employee morale and efficiency to the feeling that they’re working for a winning company,” Deas said. “We’ve worked to broaden this sponsorship beyond just the paint business and we have a ton of room for improvement.” "

You can read the entire article, (while it's there) at sportsbusinessjournal.com

Budweiser to Kasey Kahne


by Bruce Simmons
Ok, it's not new news, but it is now OFFICIAL news and I would be remiss to not post it:

BUDWEISER TAPS KASEY KAHNE AS NEXT DRIVER OF ITS LEGENDARY RACE CAR

Labonte, Waltrip, Elliott and Earnhardt. In addition to being among the most celebrated names in motorsports, these drivers share in the proud tradition of racing for one of NASCAR's most successful sponsors – Budweiser.

Today, Budweiser announced Gillett Evernham Motorsports driver Kasey Kahne will become the next world-class racer to take the wheel of the iconic red Budweiser car when the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup season kicks off in February.

"The fan in me is thrilled because driving for Budweiser is the kind of opportunity you dream of when you break into this sport. I'm excited about getting behind the wheel of a car that's been driven by some of the best this sport has seen," said Kahne, who has seven wins, 31 top-fives and 46 top-10s in three and a half years on the Cup circuit. "We'll be out to win races and championships, and everyone involved with our organization feels we can do that."

See the entire announcement over at evernhammotorsports

The splash page over at http://www.kaseykahne.com/ also has a visual clue...
and if you go over to the Budweiser Website, I RECOMMEND checking out the wallpapers.
(The site didn't have any Kasey stuff on it yet.)

Levi Strauss and Jimmie Johnson Part Ways

Levi Strauss has notified Hendrick Motorsports driver Jimmie Johnson that it will not continue its personal services agreement with him beyond the 2007 NASCAR Nextel Cup season, according to the SportsBusiness Journal.

A corporate official told the SportsBusiness Journal that it would be going in a different direction than being the official jeans of the team.

See the entire article over at SceneDaily

Monday, September 17, 2007

Earnhardt, Busch and Raines to Test with New Teams?

I came across an article that was interesting to read, pondering potentials and the futures of Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Raines and Kyle Busch. Paragraphs that caught my attention were the following:

There's a possibility they could get a chance to at least test with their future teams in a few weeks, when there's an open trial at Atlanta, though a series of dominos would have to fall if that's to happen. Yeley hopes to test the No. 96 car that Raines currently rides, which would allow his eventual replacement, Kyle Busch, to steer the Interstate Batteries Chevy, but in order for that to take place Earnhardt would have to be allowed to take Busch's seat in a Hendrick Motorsports machine.

Whether that'll happen, however, remains in question. Dale Earnhardt, Inc. president Teresa Earnhardt has already said Regan Smith will test with Junior's current team at Atlanta, but hasn't yet released her stepson to test with Hendrick, so the whole equation may break down and leave the lame ducks with their soon-to-be defunct teams.

Read the whole article at concordmonitor

NHIS Ratings Up on ABC

It is noted that the TV rating was a 3.3 and households were up 7% from last year for the race at New Hampshire.

Scene Daily

Last year's the race was on cable while this year it was on a broadcast station. Maybe that was part of the increase in viewership??

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Clint Bowyer gets his 1st Cup Win

by Bruce Simmons

Clint Bowyer had the car to beat Sunday during the Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire International Raceway. He had the pole, he led the most laps (221 laps led), and finished the race with a 6.6 second lead.

Brian Vickers had been black flagged for running the paddle on pit road early on.
Scott Riggs got a flat from rubbing fenders with Regan Smith.
Ward Burton had hit the wall on lap 67.

Around lap 121, Kurt Busch reported engine problems. Originally thought to be a cylinder gone bad, it turned out to be a carburetor issue not giving the engine enough gas. Kurt came in 25th.

At the halfway mark of the race, Bowyer was leading by 3.5 seconds, in front of Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Tony Stewart and Ryan Newman were the top 5 runners.

On lap 179 Earnhardt Jr spun out by himself.. reporting a loose condition, a rarity with the COT.. they must be onto something!

Kyle Busch took a late race gamble and did not pit when most did, had to end up pitting under green, with 76 laps to go, but things worked out ok and he recovered for a good finish.

By lap 288, Bowyer had the fastest lap of the group.. He started worrying about being tight, was quite sick to his stomach and started hearing every nut and bolt sound in his car as the laps wound down.. and he did a good job bringing it home to the finish to WIN the race.

He was followed by Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Casey Mears, Ryan Newman and J.J. Yeley to round out the top 10 finishers.

There were 7 cautions for 27 laps and 15 total lead changes.

Complete results are at NASCAR

As far as standings for for the Chase,
Johnson and Gordon are tied for first,
Tony Stewart is in third,
and though Brad Dougherty on ESPN said that being in 12th is an insurmountable problem, Clint Bowyer moved into 4th from 12th and Kyle Busch is 5th.

You can check out the standings at NASCAR.com

It was noted on the ABC telecast that this is the first race in the modern NASCAR era that 43 cars that started the race, also finished the race!

Sad News - Colin McRae Passes Away in a Tragic Accident


Sad news that former world rally champion Colin McRae and his five-year-old son were among four people killed in a helicopter crash on his property this weekend in southern Scotland, police said Sunday.



My condolences and prayers to his family and friends.

Bruce's Chase for the Cup Handicapping

by Bruce Simmons

The Chase for the NEXTEL Cup Prediction

With the last 10 races, I wanted to look at some stats from the overall performance metrics of the drivers, not just this season, but their overall performance over the years.

The last 10 races constitute 6 intermediate tracks, 3 short tracks, and 1 super speedway.(NASCAR stats say Dover, Martinsville and Phoenix fall in the short track category.)
I primarily used the stats page on NASCAR.com., and then I looked at each driver (HERE) and chose the In-Depth stats and looked at track type. It was a quick and dirty look over.

For Intermediate tracks:
Driver (Average Finish)
Jimmie Johnson (10.5),
Denny Hamlin (11.3),
Carl Edwards (11.9),
Jeff Gordon (12),
Tony Stewart (12).

For Short Tracks:
Kyle Busch (11.4),
Jeff Gordon (11.6),
Denny Hamlin (12.8),
Tony Stewart (13.5),
Jimmie Johnson (13.7).

For Super Speedway Tracks:
Jeff Gordon (14),
Tony Stewart (14.5),
Kevin Harvick (15.8),
Kurt Busch (16.1),
Jimmie Johnson (16.9).

I standardized the numbers by giving more weight to the Intermediate tracks, less weight to the Short tracks, and very little weight to the Super Speedway, I get the following statistical prediction:
DRIVER (Average Ranking from above Table)
Jimmie Johnson (2.6),
Jeff Gordon (3.1),
Denny Hamlin (3.3),
Tony Stewart (4.4),
Carl Edwards (6.1),
Matt Kenseth (6.3),
Kevin Harvick (6.9),
Jeff Burton (7.6),
Kyle Busch (8.6),
Kurt Busch (8.8),
Clint Bowyer (9.8),
Martin Truex Jr. (10.5).

So there you have it. A statistical prediction from the drivers overall past performance.

There are other trends and environmental factors I didn't tinker with. (I'm usually dead on with my fantasy leagues, but engine woes, accidents, tires miff my performance results.)

So the stats above DO NOT take into affect anyone's hot streak, (IE: Jeff Gordon is performing better the Jimmie Johnson this year), the COT affect on teams, or the specific tracks they are going to be competing at, so there is lots of room for error, not to mention engine issues. (Remember they may still be adjusting to unleaded fuel.)

Well, now we wait and see how it all pans out.

ESPN and Yellow Flag Restarts

Opinion by Bruce Simmons

It is a constant complaint from NASCAR fans. Why do the networks seem to miss so many restarts? I've noted this on my own blog at Yellow Flag Restarts on ESPN , and apparently I am not alone.

ABC's broadcast of Saturday night's Nextel Cup race from Richmond missed a few of the 12 restarts. One time, the network missed the restart and before commercials ended, caution came out again for oil on the track.

Ah, according to their best 'reason' for being the only broadcaster to miss restarts, ESPN is quoted to saying:
"Extending caution laps when we're in a commercial -- we try to do our breaks after pit stops around yellow flags -- could ultimately affect the game or affect the race because so many fuel-mile stories are involved in any given time."

And this shoddy coverage isn't going to change any time soon:
"The idea of running extra laps is not something under consideration at this time..."

Well, as I've heard time and time again, at least our sport is ON TV, even if it's sub par to what I have become accustomed to on other networks who manage to catch ALL the restarts.

See the entire detailed article over at The Roanoke Times

The Chase for the Cup - TV Schedule

Below is the TV schedule for the 10 remaining Chase for the Cup races.
All times are eastern!

09/16/07 Sylvania 300 New Hampshire International Speedway ABC/1 p.m.
09/23/07 Dover 400 Dover International Speedway ABC/1 p.m.
09/30/07 Kansas 400 Kansas Speedway ABC/1 p.m.
10/07/07 UAW-Ford 500 Talladega Superspeedway ABC/1 p.m.
10/13/07 Bank of America 500 Lowe's Motor Speedway ABC/7 p.m.
10/21/07 Subway 500 Martinsville Speedway ABC/1 p.m.
10/28/07 Pep Boys Auto 500 Atlanta Motor Speedway ABC/1 p.m.
11/04/07 Dickies 500 Texas Motor Speedway ABC/3 p.m.
11/11/07 Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Pennzoil Phoenix International Raceway ABC/3 p.m.
11/18/07 Ford 400 Homestead-Miami Speedway ABC/3 p.m.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Busch Series SANS Sponsor Possibly

Over on ThatsRacin, Jim Utter writes that NASCAR is working on contingency plans for next season as it has yet to secure a sponsor for its Busch Series.

“We’ll have that series regardless of whether a new sponsor is obtained,” said Jim Hunter, NASCAR’s vice president for corporate communications.

Which is good, as we've seen how the IROC series did not hold up to non-sponsorship!

See the rest of the article at ThatsRacin

Another Hornaday Truck Victory at NH

Ron Hornaday Jr. didn't have the truck to beat. His truck was in a class all of it's own as he dominated the Harvick owned # 33 right across the finish line at the New Hampshire 200 at New Hampshire International Speedway.

Hornaday led 174 of the 200 laps, winning, followed by Eric Darnell, Mike Skinner, Todd Bodine and Mike Bliss, rounding out the top 5.

You can see the unofficial results at nascar.com

What today did for the points standings was give Hornaday Jr a 29 point lead over Mike Skinner. Travis Kvapil is 3rd in points and Todd Bodine is 4th.

See the points HERE at NASCAR.com

Earnhardt Jr Disses Engine Conspiracy Theories


Dale Earnhardt Jr. doesn't seem too concerned about the potential for more engine failures at Dale Earnhardt Inc. this season.

And he's trying to slow the conspiracy theories emerging from his "off-the-cuff" comments made following last week's race about how his engines tend to blow more often.


"The motors are really good, power-wise, and hopefully we'll have no more failures the rest of the year," he said. "We threw a belt last week and we've thrown a belt before and we just need to figure out how that's happening and I think those guys are trying to do that."
He also said the reactions are overblown.


(I think his statement that the motors blow when they put him in his car was a statement on his luck folks, not a conspiracy.


Dang people, I know we're all pretty focused on everything Dale, but are we now making things up from words spoken after getting out of a hot car, in a frustrated moment?)


Check out the article at SceneDaily
pic from SceneDaily, by TODD WARSHAW / GETTY IMAGES

Earnhardt Jr and Wrangler renew

Dale Earnhardt Jr., who will leave primary sponsor Budweiser beer and NASCAR race team Dale Earnhardt Inc. at the end of this season, renewed a personal endorsement contract with Wrangler-brand blue jeans.

Greensboro-based VF said Friday that the Wrangler logo will appear on Earnhardt's NASCAR Cup Series car and driver's suit through the 2008 season.

ThatsRacin

Points to Regular Season Leader?

NASCAR is considering creating a reward for the winner of the "regular season" in response to the huge points lead Jeff Gordon built before the Chase for the championship.

(Here we go again.. more adjustments.. Hello? We already had that and you added the Chase for the Cup!)

NASCAR chairman Brian France said earlier this week he is willing to explore the idea of rewarding the driver who is leading the points at the end of the 26th race of the season. Gordon built a lead of more than 300 points, but lost all of it when the field was reset this week for the Chase for the championship.

NASCAR spokesman Jim Hunter said Friday that the sanctioning body will discuss the issue during the offseason. Among the ideas being kicked around are awarding additional bonus points to be used in the seeding, more prize money or a trophy different from the Nextel Cup.

(Is it me, or are they starting to go back to the old system for the first 26 weeks.. if they're not careful, it'll become a 16 week season with the Chase to the Chase to the cup!! When the chase started, the leaders were seeded as they were postitioned. Then this year they added the victory bonus to the chase. TAKE THE VICTORY BONUS AWAY FROM THE LAST 10 races and just give them MORE points for winning in the first 26 races, like everyone's been suggesting since the inception of this beast. That will reward winning, and then seed them as they used to be seeded. 'Nuff said.)

See the whold article at NASCAR

Richmond TV Ratings

Check it out,
On Friday, Sept 7th
U.S. Open Tennis (Women's Semi-Final) CBS 1.7 0.6
U.S. Open Tennis (Men's Double Final) CBS 1.5 0.4
NASCAR Busch Series (Richmond) ESPN 1.2 0.8
PGA Golf (BMW Championship, 2nd Round)Golf Channel 0.6 0.2

The Busch race was third on National Sports TV Ratings and

The Richmond Cup event squeezed in 2nd amongst the College Football games!
College Football (Oregon vs. Michigan)ABC 4.4 3.5
NASCAR Nextel Cup (Rock and Roll 400)ABC 4.2 3.1
College Football (Notre Dame vs. Penn St.) ESPN 2.9
2.0College Football (Miami vs. Oklahoma)ABC 2.7 2.0
College Football (Virginia Tech vs. LSU)ESPN 2.5 2.0

The first number is a "Household" rating, the 2nd number is Men, 18-49 rating.
The numbers aren't explained in any detail though

See TVWeek.com for more listings and details

Friday, September 14, 2007

New Hampshire - Sylvania 300 LineUp

The front row for the Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire will be
Clint Bowyer on the pole, and Martin Truex Jr. in row 1. They will be followed by
Kurt Busch and Jimmie Johnson in row 2,
Ryan Newman and Tony Stewart in row 3,
Elliott Sadler and Kevin Harvick in row 4,
Greg Biffle and Dave Blaney in row 5.

(Carl Edwads qualified 11th in a back up car!)

John Andretti qualified 26th, but failed inspection and was sent packing.
Boris Said is now in the show.

Going home will be Hornish jr., Mayfield, Lepage, Jarrett & Waltrip.

See the entire line up at FOXTRAX

Will Earnhardt Jr. Drive the 88 Car?

by Bruce Simmons

Over on Thatsracin.com, Jim Utter writes the following:

["During a news conference Wednesday in Dallas, Earnhardt Jr. and Hendrick Motorsports officials will announce Earnhardt Jr. will drive the No. 88 beginning next season, The Charlotte Observer and ThatsRacin.com have learned.

The sponsor and car number announcement will complete the final puzzle to the season long courtship of the services of NASCAR’s most popular driver." ]

Right now Yates has that number, but Jr has that number in his Busch team. I think that would be a great complimentary association, but I would have liked to see Jr make a complete clean break from the number and start completely fresh in his new team and direction.

See all the scoop details over at THATSRACIN.COM

Kasey Kahne and Budweiser


Kasey Kahne said a deal with sponsor Budweiser would be "awesome," but that nothing has been signed yet.


Kahne said he'd love to get a deal done with Bud. The Anheuser-Busch brand is parting ways with Dale Earnhardt Jr. after this season. See the whole article at Scenedaily


~~~


Additionally, the ever insightful & well connected Terry Blount over on ESPN reports that:

"As expected, Budweiser will become the primary sponsor for Kasey Kahne and the No. 9 Dodge in 2008, sources confirmed Thursday."


Gillett Evernham Motorsports officials will make the announcement Tuesday at 10 a.m. ET at team headquarters in Statesville, N.C.

The deal for Budweiser to sponsor Kahne has been in the works for more than two months. GEM officials first had to make sure Dodge representatives were OK with the change. The Dodge dealers sponsor two GEM cars -- Kahne and the No. 19 driven by Elliott Sadler.


The entire post is at ESPN
So basically, he stays in red!! I think this is a cool combination and after Jr., there weren't that many options that could have rivaled the Jr / Bud combo, but this is it!!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

A NASCAR Fan at the San Jose Grand Prix

by Bruce Simmons

When the Champ Grand Prix came through San Jose, I took advantage of the track event being 5 miles away from me and I went on the qualifying day, Friday. I had received free passes, so the price was right for me.

The gates and ticket booths opened about 40 minutes later than scheduled and the on track practice was delayed from an internet connectivity issue. I also got stiffed for a $20 parking fee when their site indicated it would only cost $5.

Once I got in, and toured around the track and infield areas. I've never been to a Champ Car Event.. I got pretty close to the track as the cars zoomed by me about 20 ft from me. The garage was in the convention center.. all the rigs were inside an air conditioned building.. A BIG BUILDING along the front stretch..

I was able to get in and walk around .. I even got some shots of the classic NASCAR cars that were going to race also.. NOW that was neat. There will be pictures posted at my web site later..

But now, it seems that the San Jose Grand Prix will be no more.

According to http://www.sanjosegrandprix.com/, due to ongoing development in the downtown San Jose region, they will no longer be in San Jose, but will move the event to the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey. (I kind of don't buy that. The track went through an already heavily established section of town that I don't see being developed or redeveloped, being that most of everything there were the established commerce, museum and convention based buildings, but what do I know. I could be missing something. While I was writing this, I came across a post about a loop hole in the contract that San Jose had with the Grand Prix.. check out mercurynews for details, and WOW, what news!!!)

On top of experiencing the San Jose Grand Prix, I experienced the last San Jose Grand Prix - for now.

UPDATE: A trusted source explained to me that they say on a local news broadcast that San Jose is planning a sky rise along the track section where the main, most expensive seating stands are placed..which is touched upon in the mercury news link. Nice going San Jose!!

NASCAR on TV this weekend, Sept 15-16

Cup Series at New Hampshire Sunday, 1 PM ET, on ABC
Truck Series at New Hampshire, Saturday, 2:30 PM ET on SPEED
Busch Series is at Dover on Sept 22nd at 7:30pm, ET on ESPN2.

Dale Earnhardt Jr - New Number, New Sponsor Being Announced


It has been announced by Hendrick Motorsports that Dale Earnhardt Jr will be revealing his new car number and sponsors for the 2008 season in a news conference at the Dallas Convention Center next Wednesday, September 19th, 2007.
According to the ESPN post by Terry Blount that [Sources confirmed earlier that Mountain Dew and the Amp energy drink, both PepsiCo Inc. products, will become two of Earnhardt's primary sponsors next season.]
The announcement is coming from Dallas because it seems that PepisCo Inc. executives are having an annual conference there next week.
[ The National Guard, which now sponsors the No. 25 Chevy of Casey Mears for the Hendrick team, is also expected to move to Earnhardt's car in 2008.

The No. 25 is being eliminated and Mears is moving the No. 5 Hendrick Chevy, which is sponsored by Kellogg's. ]
See all the details at ESPN
Finally, the wait is over for this new chapter in Jr's story.

Carl Edwards - Did You Know

Did you know that Carl Edwards owns a record label company? Yep, indeed he does. He started the label to give local folk around the Columbia, MO region a chance to get exposure.

It's called Back40Records. Go check it out, and click on the ABOUT tag.

NASCAR's Quest for Speed - A Basic Tutorial

NASCAR's Quest for Speed - That's the name of the article I came across today while trying to track down a broken link from my website...

With the advent of the COT, some of this information could be taken with the appropriate grain of salt, but for those not in the know, confused as to why or what, or how the teams go about trying to make their own advantage work for them, I think this is not a bad article to go over.

Heck, I even read something I didn't know previous!!

Check it out at POPULAR MECHANICS

NASCAR Chase for the Cup Last 10 Races


So here it is, the 2007 Chase for the Nextel Cup. Who's gonna take the championship this year? I don't really want a second Jimmie Johnson diecast in my collection, but the odds are on Jimmie, with his latest momentum and track record for this time of year that is hard to ignore.

Jeff Gordon has been here before, contending for a championship, and though he and his team hit their stride early on, missed it a bit in the middle then looks like they're coming on strong again, I don't feel confident in his opportunities, but barring performance woes, then I think he's the man to beat.

Tony Stewart can light it up and show everyone who's boss, but if Kurt Busch keeps the momentum he's got that got him back up into the top 12, then we could see a Kurt-peat performance. Face it, he can win the thing while still losing a wheel down the front stretch!!

Of course, Matt Kenseth could just as easily come in third every single race and show how consistency can make a difference as opposed to Kevin Harvick's, hot / cold performances.

I don't think Carl Edwards has the experience to do this in 2007, only because I've seen him get anxious in situations that he's new too, and his anxiety gets the best of him.

Denny Hamlin... Now Denny could be the dark horse because he's got the power plant to prove it, if he doesn't blow up. Again, it's that blowing up thing that keeps me guessing while everyone may still be contending with the unleaded fuel balances.

For one reason or another, I clump Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., Jeff Burton and Clint Bowyer in the same caboose, as these guys have taken 2nd fiddle to the others throughout the year.

I think Jimmie or Jeff is going to take this thing to the bank. Half the races are COT events and Hendricks has that platform down pat. But I sure would love to see one of my caboose choices barrel past everyone for the surprise trophy!!

Especially Clint Bowyer. He's been the quietest contender in the bunch and could literally sneak right on in there if no one is looking out for him.

Jeff Burton would probably be the most popular win of all these guys because I don't think anyone ever boo's Jeff.

Well, we now have 10 races to watch, wait, ponder, and hopefully not bite off too many fingernails, though as seems to be the case across the board with the media, this has the potential to be a close contest! And that is what NASCAR has banked this whole chase format on, close contests and better ratings.

Talladega COT Testing

by Bruce Simmons

I was listening to Sirius Satellite Radio earlier today and Jimmie Johnson and Kurt Busch were talking about the test they just had over at Talladega Speedway.

Effectively, Jimmie noted that the slingshot affect was not there during the tests because of the hole the new cars punch out of the air and when you go to pass someone, it's like letting out a parachute and if you are not careful, you not only don't make the pass, but you may lose the draft line in the process, even when getting back in line.

They did note how very stable the cars were in the draft, but this upcoming race at Talladega could be very interesting, it could be very boring with a big single file line all race.

We'll see.

Earnhardt's 1987 Car to go on Display

For those of you in the vicinity of Lowe's Motor Speedway (lucky buggers):

The No. 3 Wrangler Chevrolet that Dale Earnhardt was driving 20 years ago when he performed the legendary "pass in the grass" will return to Lowe's Motor Speedway Sept. 13-16 for the Food Lion AutoFair.

The historic stock car will be among the featured attractions showcased in the spacious Food Lion Pavilion throughout the four-day automotive extravaganza.

See the article at NASCAR.com

If anyone goes and wants to send me pics, post here and I can get you my email address so I can put it up here in my blog!!

Wallace & Schrader at NH

Kenny Wallace is reported to be driving the 88 car and
Kenny Schrader the 21 car, at New Hampshire this weekend.

Go guys, go!!

Ginn Contracts Have Been Honored

Bobby Ginn said Tuesday he's surprised by a lawsuit that claims he hasn't honored the contracts for Sterling Marlin, Joe Nemechek and two crew chiefs.

"Sterling and Joe's contracts ran through the end of the year, and I have paid them through August -- all of their winnings and salary, per the contract," Ginn said. "And I intend to pay through the end of the year. I always have."

Ginn said that crew chiefs Richard "Slugger" Labbe and Peter Sospenzo were given severance packages when they were let go, and said he's honored it and payments are up to date.

"This totally surprised me, and it looks to me like they are trying to ask for something over and above and they are just not entitled to," Ginn said.

(I still say it's agent motivated!)

See the whole article at espn.go.com

Season Ending Banquet to Vegas

Terry Blount over on ESPN notes that Speedway Motorsports Inc. chairman Bruton Smith believes chances are good NASCAR will move the Cup postseason awards banquet from New York City to Las Vegas in 2008.

"I think it's 80 to 90 percent likely to happen," Smith said Tuesday from his office in Charlotte. "I think it would be a wonderful thing for everyone involved if we can get this worked out."

Though Ramsey Poston, NASCAR's managing director of corporate communications, said talk of moving the banquet is strictly speculation.

See the rest at ESPN.com

500th Start for Jeff Gordon

Jeff Gordon will become the youngest active driver to reach 500 career starts this weekend when he takes the green flag in the SYLVANIA 300 at New Hampshire International Speedway.

pprplus.com (More details)

David Letterman's Top 12

Instead of a top 10, David Letterman had a top 12 for the "Top Twelve Reasons I Love Racing".
They were each presented by one of the Chase Drivers:

12-“We’ve got special mirrors that show objects the size that they actually are." (Clint Bowyer)
11-“Sometimes back in the garages there’s horseplay with the airhose.”(Kevin Harvick)
10-“Between the G-forces and the fumes, I’m loopy most of the season.”(Jeff Burton)
9-“Switch the ‘R’ and the ‘C’ in ‘Racing’ and you get ‘Caring.’"(Kyle Busch)
8-“Can hold 8 gigs of music on my new iHelmet.” (Matt Kenseth)
7-“In a pinch, checkered flags make a lovely tablecloth.” (Martin Turex, Jr.)
6-“Two more wins and I get to marry Ashley Judd.” (Denny Hamlin)
5-“You can talk to your car and pretend you’re David Hasselhoff.” (Kurt Busch)
4-“How many people can say their “office” goes 200 miles per hour.” (Carl Edwards)
3-“Driving fast and starting fights.” (Tony Stewart)
2-“It’s not one of those sports you have to inject stuff in your ass to be good.” (Jeff Gordon)
1-“Unlike most guys, I like it when my wife says, ‘You’re too fast.’” (Jimmie Johnson)

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Jeff Gordon Posts Baby Pics

Jeff Gordon has released new pictures of the latest addition to his racing team: his daughter.

people.com

There are 2 pics here, but the link in the article wasn't working at the time of this posting.

-Bruce

Hornish Making Cup Debut

Penske Racing officials say Sam Hornish Jr. will drive the team's No. 06 Nextel Cup Dodge this weekend at New Hampshire International Speedway, the first of several Cup races he'll attempt this season.

(I'm not against Hornish in any way, but if he hasn't been able to pull anything off in the Busch series, what's the idea here?)

See the whole article at scenedaily.com

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

An FYI on NASCAR's COT

If you have any questions about NASCAR's Car of Tomorrow (COT), I found that NASCAR.com has provided a web page with A LOT of links with many tidbits of stuff.

From video's of drivers talking about the car, officials talking about the inspection process, recaps on the penalties, and just a lot of stuff. (You'll need to set aside a few minutes for this one!)

Judging from all the links, this is an ever changing page as stats pile up at each race or what not.. just a guess.
Check it out out NASCAR.com

Jimmie Johnson has Concerns on the Bump Draft

With the COT being more readily able to bump draft, Jimmie Johnson has concerns the practice will be employed quite heavily at the upcoming Talladega race.

We've seen how hard they can 'ram' each other at short tracks, and it's been noted how hard it is to "move" the car in front. I've personally seen (on tv) how these cars tend to right themselves pretty quick after getting sideways.. which, from all the statements on how the car pushes from everyone, supported my perspective of this observation.. for me.

"The cars line up better, and you can get away with a lot more pushing and shoving," Johnson said. "The cars have a lot of down force and are comfortable to drive, so I think that will lead to a little bit more aggressive driving."

But then Johnson regresses a bit, saying the front splitter may also hamper this concern.

See the entire article at SCENEDAILY.com

Talladega COT Testing

It seems that Denny Hamlin has the fast car on single car runs and was noted to saying, "..you feel a lot of wind buffering in this car versus the other car, just with the huge hole that it punches in the air. Really, other than that, the way it actually steers and everything is not that much different."

Kevin Harvick said: "You know, so far the car drives really well and everything seems to be fine. So it's just a matter of not having 500 miles with the engine and with the car -- basically having nothing on the racetrack for that period of time. Obviously, you can do all the testing that you want, but you can't really ever put it in race condition."

This was the sixth of seven scheduled tests in 2007 and the third dedicated to the Car of Tomorrow.

See more details at NASCAR.com

Monday, September 10, 2007

Nemechek and Marlin Sue Ginn and DEI

Sterling Marlin and Joe Nemechek have sued Ginn Racing and Dale Earnhardt Inc. for alleged breaches of their contracts, which included a base salary of $1.2 million apiece.

The separate suits, filed Sept. 7 in Cabarrus County, N.C., do not specify how much they have been paid or what they exactly are owed.

Also suing Ginn and DEI are crew chiefs Richard "Slugger" Labbe and Peter Sospenzo.

I don't know about you, and keep in mind I like these guys, but how would you feel about hiring someone who may sue you if you hire them? This is NASCAR, not hollywood!! I've heard it said that agents are the cause of most of this stuff, but that's from other entertainment mediums like Hollywood and Baseball.