Thursday, November 29, 2007

Stewie Award Winners

Today was the first annual Stewie Awards, presented by two-time NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Champion and SIRIUS Radio host Tony Stewart at the SIRIUS Satellite Radio Studios in New York City.

The winners of the 2007 'Stewie Awards' are:

-- Stewie Lifetime Achievement Award
Bill France, Jr., former Chairman and CEO of NASCAR
Benny Parsons, Hall of Fame driver/broadcaster

-- Golden Stewie Award - Honoring a legendary driver from the Golden Era of racing (1960-85)
A.J. Foyt

-- Best Duet - For outstanding teamwork by a driver and crew chief
Clint Bowyer & Gil Martin: Martin keeps Bowyer calm and team performs only one adjustment all day to get Bowyer's first career NASCAR NEXTEL Cup win in Sylvania 300 (Sept. 16)

-- Best Original Drama - For year's most exciting race moment
Kevin Harvick edges Mark Martin to win his first Daytona 500 (Feb. 18)

-- New Kid on the Track Award - For year's most outstanding performance by a rookie
Juan Pablo Montoya: Wins first NEXTEL Cup race in Toyota Save Mart 350 (June 24)

-- Best Stunt Sequence (Hal Needham Award) - For year's most spectacular crash
Clint Bowyer: Crosses finish line at Daytona 500 on his roof (Feb. 18)

-- Best Original Comedy - For year's most entertaining on track "incident" or occurrence
Robby Gordon performs "victory celebration" burnout despite losing Busch Series race at Circuit Gilles Villaneuve in Canada (Aug. 4)

-- Best Vocal Performance - For year's most memorable quote or sound bite
Actor Kevin James: Provides memorable "Start Your Engines" command before Pepsi 400 (July 7)

-- Best Engineering and Special Effects (Smokey Yunick Award) - For year's most creative - and ultimately illegal - modifications to a race car
Crew Chief David Hyder & MWR VP of Competition Bobby Kennedy: Illegal fuel in #55 car at Daytona 500 (Feb. 18)

-- Dazed and Confused Award - For year's the most baffling move
Teresa Earnhardt and DEI allow Dale Earnhardt Jr. to leave for Hendrick Motorsports

-- 'I Got Dumped' Award - For year's most memorable on-track bumping
Kyle Busch: Wrecked by brother Kurt in NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge (May 19)

-- Best Driver2Crew Chatter Exchange - For year's most memorable driver-to-pit crew communication
Denny Hamlin/#11 team: Discuss "plan of attack" against Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #8 car during Subway 500 (Oct. 21)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Aaron Fike WAS on a Bad Road

Former NASCAR driver Aaron Fike understands where he was headed when he was arrested while using heroin in an amusement park parking lot this summer.

"After four months of intense rehabilitation, I know that if it were not for my arrest, I would be dead," he said.

Fike was eighth in the standings in the Craftsman Truck Series when he was arrested in the Kings Island parking lot outside Cincinnati in July.

At this time, he is in an aggressive rehab program he wrote for a Warren County judge. The judge accepted Fike's proposal to avoid jail by going to schools and racetracks to deliver an anti-drug message.

Though it may be very unlikely he will drive in NASCAR again, one may never know.  He sounds pretty sincere about his road to recovery and that may translate into a renewed focus on his journey.

For more details, check out the Sun Herald

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Did You Like TNT's "Wide Open Coverage"?

Well, if you liked the July 7 weekend coverage with TNT's commercials in tiny boxes while we still get to watch the race, then you are in luck.

Turner Sports and TNT are going with that format again next year as Sprint will definitely return for next year’s July 5 telecast and they are talking to other marketers like Auto Zone, DirecTV, Ford, Goodyear, Miller Brewing Co., Principal Financial Group, Subway and Toyota.

With Coca-Cola replacing Pepsi as the sponsor for next year’s race, it will be known as the Coke 400. Turner is also talking with Coke about becoming a TV sponsor of the race and buying branded spots in the telecast.

For more details, check out

NASCAR Champions Week in New York

In case you don't know the low down on the week of activity, there's a comprehensive collection of links and info over on

On Nov 28, The Top 10 drivers of the 2007 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series complete a Victory Lap around midtown Manhattan.

All week, more than a dozen authentic NASCAR stock cars scattered at signature locations throughout Manhattan. Street teams hand out official NASCAR partner giveaways all day long at each location.

High energy, two-day indoor event featuring driver and crew appearances, radio station remotes, event emcee, NASCAR trivia and prize giveaways and much more at the Aflac FanFest. (Que the DUCK!!) This event is free and open to the public at the Hard Rock Café Times Square, in the LIVE venue room.Hard Rock Café43rd and BroadwayTimes Square.

NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series™ Awards Ceremony, live on ESPN Classic at 9pm ET on November 30th.

For all the details, pics, and other goodies check out

Monday, November 26, 2007

The 43 team gets a new Crew Chief

Petty hires Jeff Meendering as Labonte's crew chief

Petty Enterprises officials have announced the hiring of Jeff Meendering as crew chief for Bobby Labonte's No. 43 Dodge team.

Meendering comes from Hendrick Motorsports, where he served as car chief for Jeff Gordon's team. He replaces Doug Randolph, who moved to Dale Earnhardt Inc.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Sad News: Frank Kimmel's Mom Passes Away

Mabel Kimmel, 82, of Clarksville Indiana, mother of nine-time ARCA RE/MAX Series driving champion Frank Kimmel, died Tuesday morning, November 20th.

See details over at ARCA RACING

Monday, November 19, 2007

I'm Not Addicted

The last race of the season happened yesterday, but I'm ok.
It's only 90 days until the 2008 Daytona 500 from today...

The hours and minuted might be off....

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Jimmie Johnson - 2007 NEXTEL Cup Champion

Matt Kenseth won the Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. He was followed by Kurt Busch, Denny Hamlin, Jeff Gordon and Carl Edwards to round out the top 5. (Unofficial Results)

The race was fairly uneventful, with the race and the points race, but with an early wreck by Dale Earnhardt Jr. taking him out of contention for getting a win in his last ride in the Budweiser car, and Matt Kenseth's crew chief, Robbie Reiser, winning the last race as th 17 car crew chief were pretty interesting developments.

But Jimmie Johnson paced Jeff Gordon, with Chad Knaus saying they kept the pit strategy around the same laps that the 24 car pitted kept them close in position, keeping the 24 car in sight all night long.

With that being said, Jeff Gordon came in 4th, but Jimmie Johnson finished 7th, retaining his points lead in the championship and winning the 2007 NEXTEL Cup Championship. A repeat Champion from last year. (Unofficial Standings)

The rookie of the year contenders, David Ragan and Juan Pablo Montoya weren't that far apart either... Ragan finished 10th, and Montoya finished 15th. I'm guessing that Montoya will get the ROY honors, but I'm waiting for that to be announced. (The standings are at this link: nascar) (Update: Montoya is Raybestos Rookie of the Year, as announced at SceneDaily)

As far the much coveted 35th position, Kyle Petty did not have to resort to swapping drivers late in the season with Bobby Labonte as Kyle finished 34th today and kept the 35th spot for next years first few races.

CONGRATULATIONS to JIMMY JOHNSON on his 2nd (consecutive) championship. Well done to everyone on his team, and the Hendrick shop.

NASCAR Looking at Different Qual Ideas

Nextel Cup Series Director John Darby said Nov. 9 that the sanctioning body is still studying the possibility of having teams outside the top 35 in owner points qualify as a group, but that a final decision has not been made.

And if they would listen to the all knowing fans, and drivers, they'd make it a reality.

It's a great idea to get the teams outside the top 35 to qualify in the same group so they have similar track conditions to compete against each other in.

See the article over at NASCAR

Hendrick Would Love to Lock Up Johnson

No surprise, if it's up to Rick Hendrick, Jimmie Johnson will drive a Hendrick Motorsports racecar for the remainder of his career.

Hendrick said he is fully prepared to do whatever it takes to retain Johnson's services for as long as he drives professionally in the Nextel Cup Series. Money. Assets. Car dealerships. And most importantly, championship-caliber racecars.

(Don't forget Chad Rick!) See the whole article at ESPN

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Kasey Kahne Having Some Cop Trouble

Kasey Kahne is under investigation by the Homestead Police Department for pushing a track security guard down Friday before the Truck race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

A conflict ensued between Kahne and the guard after Kahne could not provide the proper credential for his brother, Kale Kahne, in order to enter the drivers' motorhome lot inside the speedway, according to Police Capt. Tom Foglia.

After the incident the security guard complained his blood pressure had escalated. An emergency vehicle was called and the security guard was taken to the infield care center.

You know Kasey, the new Jimmy Spencer!!

Source: nascar

Top 10 Why Bud is Backing Kasey

Check out a list of the top 10 reasons why Budweiser decided to go with Kasey Kahne over at

The Last Busch Sponsored Race

The last Busch sponsored series race was won by Jeff Burton who was proud to be the race winner of the final race sponsored by Busch.

He was followed by Mark Martin who pushed hard for the 2nd place finish followed by
Matt Kenseth,
Carl Edwards and
Stephen Leicht filling out the top 5 spots for this historical last race.

See the Ford 300 results over at Scene Daily.

Busch Race - Homestead

David Ragan snagged the pole for today's Busch Race, Carl Edwards will help fill out the front row.

See the entire lineup at foxsports for the Ford 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Is it Lauren Wallace or Warren Wallace

Does it matter? He's gone a hundred miles away.
I don't think he'd care.. "Whatever".

But if you watch this video of the the ad, he calls himself Lauren.
Now how the heck do you spell Lauren correctly??


And here's a great site to check out:

Now you know...

A Saturday Morning Perspective about the Truck Series

Retrospect by Bruce Simmons

First, let me start with what I want to quantify as a rumor:

On Friday (11/16/07) on SIRIUS Satellite Radio channel 128, around 11:30-ish Pacific time, they were talking about the Truck Series going to restrictor plates for all races to minimize engine costs.

OK, you read it here first! My first big scoop. .. Maybe. I say rumor because I can't find any reference to it anywhere on the web. so this is probably a bogus premise.

NOW, on the the real reason for this post:

What does 54, 127, 55, 46, 9, 46, 73, 230, 8, 3, 232, 53 & 126 all have in common?

These are the point spreads between the Champion and 2nd place in the Craftsman Truck Series. In all but 3 of the 13 years of the truck series, the championship has been contended right down to the last race of each year and without the "benefit" of a final 10 race chase format. Imagine that.

Without any tinkering, the Truck series has kept us on the edge of our seats through out the entiretu of most seasons. Obviously, there were a few yawner years, where Bodine and Biffle annihilated the field, but otherwise, each point spread could have been decided in the last race of the season.

How is that possible?

The truck series have limited sets of tires they can use in a race. Cup doesn't.
The truck series doesn't go on for 1/2 a day, ok, 3 to 4 hours. The Cup series is a marathon endurance.
The truck series are not sleek aero guided missiles like the Cup series, but that's going to change in 2008 in the Cup series.

So did NASCAR have it right from the beginning of the Truck series as they let the Cup series evolve itself? As far as points and team equalization goes, it seems that way from here as the Ron Hornaday fans all let out a sigh of relief when they watched Mike Skinner's wheel take it's own path across the track independent of the truck itself.
But then again, my new hero, Lauren (Warren as some have misconstrued) Wallace would just say: "Whatever! I doesn't matter what I'm in. One second I'm there, the next, Hey, where's he go?! " And then he would go back to chewing on his toothpick.

Food for thought, or really, a Saturday morning retrospect while I wait for the rest of the family to wake up today.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Earnhardt Jr is Sad for his Father

Dale Earnhardt Jr is closing out his DEI career at Homestead this Sunday.
This also closes out his on-track association with Budweiser.

But Dale Jr. is sad. Sad for the dream his father originally had for him and DEI. The hopes of Dale Jr. winning a championship at DEI is gone, and so is his tenure at his dad's place.

People blame Teresa Earnhardt. They blame the system. But really, fate had a hand in this and with Dale Jr. being the same age his dad was when Dale Sr started at RCR - so maybe this is fate waiting to happen.

We'll see. But we need to give it this first year for him to gel with the HMS system.. then, for me, all bets are off.

NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Champion

The Place: Homestead Florida
The Event: the Ford 200
The Series: NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series

Johnny Benson won the race. (I didn't want to keep you in suspense about the race winner)

The early part of the race saw Mike Skinner and Jon Wood having the dominant trucks of the night. I had chalked the championship up to Skinner because initially, it looked like Hornaday was struggling to make 5th. But the hand of fate reached in and Mike Skinner's truck fell apart at the left rear wheel hub, setting him back 10 laps and Ron Hornaday Jr. just had to stay in the running.

No flats, no crash aftermaths, no debris - that's all.. and sure enough, he finished on the lead lap in 7th and got his 3rd truck series championship.

Congratulations Ron, Congratulations Kevin Harvick Inc... (article) (results)

Johnson - Points Lead and Homestead Pole

Jimmie Johnson grabbed the pole for the Ford 400 at Homestead for Friday.

(I'd say look out Jeff, but pole sitters don't always translate into race winners.. soooo the tension builds even further!!)

He was followed up by Ryan Newman, Kasey Kahne, Matt Kenseth & Kurt Busch for the top 5 spots.

Jeff Gordon nabbed the 11th spot for the start.

FOX Sports

Doral Contenders Press Conference

The event that Speed channel broker programming for on Thursday was the Doral Contenders Press Conference, held at the Doral Golf Resort & Spa in Miami, at 1pm eastern.

This is the 3rd season they gathered for this special press conference before heading into Sunday’s Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup leader Jimmie Johnson, second-place Jeff Gordon and team owner Rick Hendrick were in attendance.

A transcript from the event can be found at and photos of the event can be found at:


Thursday, November 15, 2007

Promotion for Robby Reiser

One of the longest crew chief-driver relationships in Nextel Cup will end after Sunday's finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway as Robbie Reiser, who has been Matt Kenseth's crew chief since 2000 and long before that in the Busch Series, has been named general manager at Roush Fenway Racing.

He is replacing Max Jones, who will move into the GM role at Robert Yates Racing. RYR and Roush recently formed an alliance that basically will allow them to work as a seven-car operation without violating NASCAR's four-car cap. (Oh here we go again!! I guess Roush figured out how to get around the 4 car rule!)

See the details over at espn

MWR - 2007 Champions!

What??? Am I off my rocker, have I mis-typed something and I am only fantasizing as a closet MWR race fan??

Nah. I'm chatting about the Totally Racin' softball league the shop was in.. they seem to have a knack for it and won the league they were in... details.. nope.. just came across this link and thought I'd torment you folks!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

An Amazing Truth that Hits Home - A Quote 2 Ponder

"It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit."
....Harry S Truman

SPEED Coverage of NASCAR Announcement

It has been noted out there that SPEED will interrupt its telecast of the Busch Series race replay Thursday afternoon (Nov. 15) at 1:00pm/et to present a LIVE NASCAR press conference from Homestead.

At the moment, I know no details..  maybe I missed something, but I'll let you know as soon as I find some dirt on the situation.


The Points Standings - ROOKIE of the YEAR

By Bruce Simmons

A close race for Rookie of the year is happening this very moment, and we didn't even know it.  Wow..  who'd a thunk?

The media coverage that Juan Pablo Montoya generated this year, with his 'Race hard, no matter what position I'm in' attitude, a few incidents getting him the moniker, Juan Problem Montoya, and some serious expectations or hopes has drowned out the the fact that the Rookie of the Year race is not spread out and that there are other rookies in the field.

The contending rookies this year are Montoya, Ragan, Menard, Reutimann & Allmendinger.

Points alone, Montoya leads the pack, BUT he is only 21 points ahead of David Ragan.  Furthermore, Montoya is only 45 points ahead of Paul Menard and 64 points ahead of David Reutimann.

In my mind, the competition is between Montoya and Reutimann.

If you look at points alone, it's too close to call and anything can happen this weekend at Homestead but if you look at top 10 performance, Montoya has 6 while Ragan has 2.  But Ragan's top 10's were actually top 5's, where Montoya has 3 top 5's.  And of course, Montoya has a win under his belt, coming from his road racing talents.

After all this, Paul Menard is only 45 points back, but as 6 less starts!

Back to the Montoya/Ragan contest:  Consider this - even though Montoya has many more top 10's, Ragan has performed consistently to be within 21 points of Montoya.

This Rookie of the Year race should come down to points, but as the rules state:

Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidates earn points based on their best 17 finishes of the season. Points are earned through entry points, competition points based on finish, top 10 bonus points, bonus points based on three segments of the season and a panel of voters at the completion of the season.

Montoya had the media eye this year as NASCAR's international star, and a few good finishes, but Ragan has the consistency to be right there behind him and even with 6 less starts, Menard can see the points lead in the Rookie standings.  Wow.  I hope marketing does not win out on this one and we'll see how it all pans out at Homestead.

I don't envy the judges.

NASCAR's Rookie Points Page

The Points Race - For 35th

Going into Homestead, we see several points competitions being focused on.  (Heating up is probably not the correct adjective).

Looking at the race for that much coveted 35th place in the standings is one of those points races.

Going into Homestead, Kyle Petty is in 35th place.
He is 187 points behind Paul Menard.  He ain't moving into 34th in this last race.
But, there's a slim chance the Petty can lose his grip on 35th.

Slim because the 2 cars behind Petty would have to do extremely well to garner the points necessary to surpass Petty, if petty manages a fair finish.

Trailing behind Petty in 36th, is Scott Riggs, 116 points back, and Joe Nemechek, who is 134 points behind Petty.
Again, they'd have to do great while Petty experiences a catastrophe for them to take advantage of.

The reality:  Kyle Petty has the 35th spot locked up.

Point Standings going into HOMESTEAD

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Jack Sprague is Joining KHI

Kevin Harvick Inc. (KHI) announced today that Jack Sprague has signed a multi-year agreement to drive the No. 2 Kevin Harvick Inc. Chevrolet Silverado in the NASCAR Truck Series beginning in 2008. A primary sponsor has been secured and will be announced at a later date.

Sprague, a three-time NASCAR Truck Series champion, will begin a new chapter in his racing career as he joins two-time Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday at KHI in 2008.

See more details over at

Bodine Replacing Ward in the 4 Car

Tim Morgan, President of Morgan-McClure Motorsports, Inc. and Larry McClure, Team Manager announced today that Todd Bodine will drive the No. 4 State Water Heaters/Lucas Oil Chevrolet for Morgan McClure Motorsports in the final race of the season this weekend at Miami-Homestead Speedway.

The change in drivers is helping the team fully evaluate the performance of the team.

See a few more details at

For the Andretti Fan in You

BAM Racing co-owner Tony Morgenthau says driver John Andretti will return for the full NASCAR Sprint Cup season in 2008.

Good for John.. let's see if everyone can pull this off and make something happen in the COT.

See more at