Wednesday, September 25, 2013

NASCAR Expands 2014 Preseason Thunder

NASCAR just released news on what their plans are for the 2014 Preseason Thunder at Daytona will include, and it looks pretty cool for all involved.
Rather than my glamoring it up with how I feel about it... here's the press release that just landed in my inbox!

via press release

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 25, 2013) – Preseason Thunder, the annual test session held at Daytona International Speedway in preparation for the season-opening races at the 2.5-mile superspeedway, will expand in 2014 to include all three NASCAR national series – the NASCAR Sprint Cup, NASCAR Nationwide and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

Kicking off the “Road to Daytona” which culminates with the 56th running of the Daytona 500 on Feb. 23, 2014, Preseason Thunder testing begins Thursday and Friday, Jan. 9-10, with the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series participating in two days – and four sessions – of on-track activity. NASCAR Nationwide Series testing will follow on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 11-12, with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series testing on Monday and Tuesday, Jan. 13-14. All test sessions are scheduled to run from 9 a.m.-Noon ET, and again from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. ET.

“Preseason Thunder at Daytona offers teams an opportunity to prepare for one of the most important race weekends of the season,” said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR vice president of competition. “Races at Daytona International Speedway are unique to NASCAR competition, and Preseason Thunder will not only give all three of our national series an opportunity to test, but will allow us to settle upon a rules package that will benefit our teams and provide the best on-track action for our fans.”

“We’re looking forward to hosting all three of NASCAR’s national touring series for Preseason Thunder,” Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III said. “Having the Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series teams join the stars of the Sprint Cup Series in testing the high banks will ignite plenty of excitement for the start of the new NASCAR season.”

In addition to the on-track action, NASCAR and Daytona International Speedway announced the return of Preseason Thunder Fan Fest, a fan-favorite event featuring driver question-and-answer opportunities, autograph sessions and more. The Preseason Thunder Fan Fests are scheduled on Thursday night, Jan. 9 for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and Saturday night, Jan. 11 for the NASCAR Nationwide Series.

The schedule of driver question-and-answer and autograph sessions will be finalized closer to the event. Tickets for Preseason Thunder, which include the autograph session wristbands, will be available for purchase on Monday, Nov. 18 by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.

Fans can watch each day’s testing at no cost from a section of the Oldfield Grandstands on the Daytona International Speedway frontstretch.

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

My NASCAR TV Era Starts to Fail Me

Well, it finally happened.  My NASCAR TV landscape failed me for the first time ever, in my memory.  And that's a long memory

Last weekend I ran out of things to watch and I needed a fix.  I needed something from NASCAR to sooth my addiction... I mean fandom.

And this was the first time that, since SPEED TV became Fox Sports 1, that I went cruising looking for something on TV NASCAR related.

I would have taken anything, any snippet of news, of rumors, or even just a headline about NASCAR.

And when Speed TV was around, I was always able to tune in when ever I wanted and got my dose of Sprint Cup.  But alas, this moment that I dread, was upon me.

I picked up the remote and started cruising the channels.  Left, right, up, down... the sports category was void of the colors of NASCAR.  There was no news about the sport.  No upcoming shows about it.  Nada.  (No, not NAPA, nada.)

I could not even find Days of Thunder, no Ricky Bobby.

I sat there, realizing that by the power of TV ratings, or the lack there of, I've been abandoned to my own devices.  Sadly, I quieted my TV, curled up and went into withdrawal. 

(I was just looking for an excuse to take a nap... so this was OK)
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Monday, September 23, 2013

After Week 2, The Chase Points Unfold

I said a few weeks back that despite loading up the Chase field with 12 (13 this year, thanks to Chase-Gate) drivers is almost a moot point.  The top 3 to 5 guys in points headed into Richmond are the guys to beat.

Top-3 Chase contenders for The Cup in NASCAR - Matt Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson

Back then I sorted out the drivers via how they've performed via top-5 and 10 finishes.

I ended up looking at Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch and Joey Logano, by virtue of their top-10 finishes.  And if my stats would stay faithful, I "suggested" that this would be Kyle Busch's year, barring horrid luck.

Now, after two races in the books, the top-12 positions are splaying out nicely.

My Logano suggestion has panned out... he's 69 points behind Matt (Let's win the first two races) Kenseth.  69 points is pretty big, but not insurmountable yet.

My other two choices are hot on the tail of Kenseth, that being Kyle Busch (14 back) and Johnson (18 behind Kenseth).

Friday, September 20, 2013

Is NASCAR's Cheating SpinGate Scandal An Exlusive Anomaly?

NASCAR has been taking a slight beating these days because of the nasty little event being referred to as spingate, where Michael Waltrip Racing had one car seemingly spin intentionally while another car pitted way out of sequence, to help various factors of the outcome of the driver points standings at the race at Richmond a few weeks back.

NASCAR has been handing out penalties and making adjustments on the fly, with the 12, now 13 contenders for the Chase for the Cup, due to these events.  And MWR has lost NAPA as a sponsor.

I was asked the other weekend why some of the sponsors are still on the cars of the other participants of the various teams that are getting caught (up) in this scenario, and the blatant answer is they don't care.

But to be honest, it takes certain obligatory events to create an "out" for a sponsor who has signed a contract with a team that's worth around $10-$30 million a year.

And these days, NASCAR is taking it hard on the nose of this cheating environment.

But let's be honest, who doesn't cheat?  Where the term cheat could be creatively implied from various actions.

Most sports have had some kind of issue or situation in the past that has caught the media's attention.  From video taping the opposing team, to jacking up with performance enhancing drugs, to jockeys hauling back hard on the reigns of a horse to keep it from leaping out in front of the pack at the finish line.

We've seen it all and this is not a new event in the world of sports.

At the moment, it's the biggest scandal going on in the sports world and in some cases, getting some (undue) attention.

The problem I'm having, well, having for, MWR, is that they risked two incredibly great sponsors of the sport for this endgame of theirs that included publicly decrying in various methods that their stunt worked.  And that the stunt was as blatant as it was.

NAPA's had enough.  They're bailing in the middle of a lucrative contract with MWR.  (Yes, contracts have clauses that address these kinds of special moments, giving sponsors an out when their client does dumb shit.)

I wish to apologize to NAPA and 5-Hour Energy.  This Waltrip thing is not exemplary behavior of NASCAR.  Sure, teams find themselves in the grey area from time to time, but these flagrant bonehead moves are not the common practice in the sport. (...that I know of.)

Please, don't leave the sport of NASCAR.  Other teams who are in the thick of good, near-honest competition could use your $10-30 million contracts to keep afloat.  Please find other worthy drivers of your funding to stay around.

That would be appreciated and it would let the fans know it's the sport you support and not just a specific driver.  Though I must say, you have a lot of marketing out there that you're being forced to probably pull to minimize your expsoure to this crap Waltrip pulled.

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Thursday, September 19, 2013

NAPA Dropping Out Sponsoring Michael Waltrip Racing

Call it what you may, but it seems that what I'm seeing is that NAPA has had enough of the scandals that come with backing Michael Waltrip.  NAPA is ending their relationship with MWR as the 2013 season comes to a close, all within the wake of the Chase manipulation move the teams tried to pull at Richmond.

That, despite their present contract set to expire after 2015.

NAPA statement:

"NAPA believes in fair play and does not condone actions such as those that led to the penalties assessed by NASCAR.  We remain supportive of the millions of NASCAR fans and will evaluate our future position in motorsports."

Which is a shame for MWR, considering how much of a long-term relationship they've had with Waltrip himself.

In reply, Waltrip himself made the following statement

“NAPA has been with me from winning two Daytona 500s, to missing races with a new start-up team, and back to victory lane again. The relationship grew far past that of just a sponsor, but more of a partner and a friend. We will not be racing a NAPA car in 2014, but I have friendships that will last a lifetime.

“To the fans and those who made their voice heard through social media, as the owner, I am responsible for all actions of MWR. I sincerely apologize for the role our team played and for the lines NASCAR has ruled were crossed by our actions at Richmond. NASCAR met with the competitors in Chicago and we all know how we are expected to race forward.


To be honest, someone made an interesting statement to me last weekend.  During the long Chicago race, there was one shot with a few of the drivers that were in question with this Richmond scandal in the same TV shot, and someone tweeted me, saying something to the effect:

It's sad to see that all the drivers who were involved in all the Richmond troubles are all still wearing their sponsors' suits.  I guess the sponsors don't care what happened.

And to be honest, that's an interesting perspective to put on the image they were talking about.

But one thing is for sure... 

If you are going to cheat, try not to advertise it or make hugely obvious radio chatter about what it is you're up to.  Let's try being a bit more clandestine next time guys.  And mark my words, I'm betting this won't the last time a Waltrip tries something fishy.  But it will be a while before he or his team gets comfortable enough again to try something.

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Friday, September 13, 2013

NASCAR Announces Decision Following Review Of Race At Richmond International Raceway

Via press release
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 13, 2013) – Following a comprehensive review of all available audio and video communications from last Saturday night's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway, along with interviews with team personnel, NASCAR announced Friday the following decision:
       Both the Front Row Motorsports and Penske Racing organizations have been placed on NASCAR probation until Dec. 31 for violating Section 12-1 (Actions detrimental to stock car racing).
      A 13th car – the No. 24 – would be added to this year's Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
"Based on all of our findings this week, we determined both Front Row Motorsports and Penske Racing organizations would be placed on probation for the remainder of this season," said Brian France, NASCAR Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "Additionally, based upon the totality of our findings, to be fair and equitable we decided that adding a 13th car to this year's Chase is the appropriate action.
"Beginning with our decision Monday, which resulted in an unprecedented team penalty, and continuing with further examination of actions involving two other race teams, it is clear to us that attempts to manipulate the results impacted the Chase field.
"The integrity of our sport remains the cornerstone of NASCAR, and our actions this week speak to our commitment to ensure a level playing field for all competitors."
Additionally, NASCAR will conduct a mandatory meeting with drivers, owners, crew chiefs and other team personnel tomorrow to address this issue moving forward.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The 2013 Chase Seeing Possibly More Scandal Issues?

Sports... cheating... they go hand in hand.  The only difference is that if you get caught, it's bad.  If you don't, you go on to all that fame and glory that comes with winning.

We've already had one issue with the race to the chase with the Waltrip Racing debacle, and Truex effectively getting pulled from the chase, Newman getting in.

But now, there's new noise on the horizon that it's possible that Joey Logano's team had made a request of Front Row Motorsports driver David Gilliland to let Logano pass him to help him get into the Chase.

And he did, getting in front of Gilliland to secure his spot in the Chase, while Gilliland's lap times dropped by a whole second after that.

As far as what exactly is being reported, there's communications of a request to let Logano pass.  When Gilliland's team inquires who is making the request, the reply is "We've got the big dog and all his cronies."


Logano doesn't think it's a big deal, but some folks do. 

I received these two NASCAR statements in my inbox, that they sent to the core of press:

NASCAR is aware of reports about the #22 and #38 radio communications at Richmond International Raceway and is looking into it, but has yet to see anything in full context that requires any action.

NASCAR is continuing to gather all the facts from last Saturday night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at Richmond International Raceway. NASCAR will have no further comment until all the facts have been examined.

To be honest, this doesn't seem as terrible as the MWR thing, but NASCAR could prove me wrong.


And this is on the heels of NASCAR having dinged MWR rather heavily for manipulating the outcome of the Richmond race with Clint Bowyer spun himself out to bring out the caution.

Though there were other actions involved, where MWR driver Brian Vickers was asked to pit after a green flag, many are focused on Bowyer.  But the other actions, with Vickers pitting, gave Logano more position, enabling him to knock Jeff Gordon out of the 2013 Chase.


All the while, Carl Edwards has skated any press pressure from his restart where he blatantly beat the leader to the green flag on the final race restart.  Something that NASCAR chose to ignore enforcing.  This time.  (I wish they'd get consistent.)


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

NAPA's Take on Waltrip Team Race Fix - Should They Stay or Go?

OK, is "race fix" too strong a word on when Martin Truex Jr.'s teammate intentionally spun his car?  Maybe. or maybe not.  If you look over Michael Waltrip's statement reaction to accepting the penalties, he called the spin a "split-second decision" to pull that move.

Martin Truex Jr, at Sonoma - Will NAPA drop their sponsorship?

But if you look at what transpired before the spin, things don't add up as some sort of on-the-spot decision.

First, the spotter let's the team know Newman is winning.  Then right after that Brian Pattie (Truex's crew chief) says,

"Is your arm starting to hurt?” and
I bet it’s getting hot in there. Itch it.

Now I don't know about you...  but being asked if my arm hurts, and being instructed to itch it does not seem like some catch phrases that would trigger me to spin my car out.  Unless this was all a preconceived plan that was concocted prior to the race.

No, as far as I can tell, this half-brained plan that involved open communications before and after the event seemed ... well, half-cocked.  Period.

With that said, NAPA made a public statement about the incident,

The actions taken by Michael Waltrip’s Racing team this past weekend leading to the penalties assessed by NASCAR, are very concerning. We are disappointed that a partner associated with our organization would make such a significant error in judgment. In addition, we have launched our own review to determine the future of our partnership with Michael Waltrip’s Racing team. The NAPA AUTO PARTS organization is proud of its long-standing NASCAR relationship. We share a passion with our customers for high quality racing and seek to determine the best course of action for our customers, NASCAR fans, and the NAPA organization.

And this would not be the first time NAPA was on board with Waltrip when something huge came down the pipe in regards to an infraction.  (The "additive" incident a few years back at the Daytona 500.)

They stuck by Waltrip and his team after that and since then, so this would be the second time they condone questionable practices, if they don't pull out from the team.

Sure...  Truex MIGHT be an innocent pawn in this plan.  Because you know, the pawn probably wasn't in the team meetings that talked about this, right?  Or he truly could be.  I don't know.  But it doesn't matter.  his name/face are smack dab in the middle of this.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Michael Waltrip Racing Statement On Richmond Penalty

It's been a crazy day in NASCAR... After the incident with Michael Waltrip Racing on Saturday, NASCAR went to work and after reviewing all the information at their disposal, they handed down penalties.

I didn't expect that.

And after the penalties were handed out, I was quietly expecting some kind of appeal from MWR.

But instead, the team got in front of this debacle they created, and said they accept the penalties and will move forward.

Leave it to Waltrip to hit it big in the penalties department again.  Remember the "not jet fuel" issue from 2007?  Well, this one seems just as insidious.

The thing is, had they not been so blatant about this stunt, from the obvious radio chatter to the lame duck explanations, and Michael telling Martin he has the best teammates ever... it all just added up to the layman watching it.  Who knows what NASCAR had access to.

I remember hearing the rumored (alleged) stories about his older brother, Darrel, and though that kind of stuff can't happen in this era.  But Mikey keeps trying... that's for sure.

Check out the press release MWR released this evening"

"Michael Waltrip Racing accepts the penalties issued by NASCAR this evening and plans to move forward in the 2013 season.

Michael Waltrip, founder and co-owner of MWR: “What occurred on the No. 55 radio at the end of Saturday night’s race in Richmond was a split-second decision made by team spotter Ty Norris to bring the No. 55 to pit lane and help a teammate earn a place in the Chase. We regret the decision and its impact. We apologize to NASCAR, our fellow competitors, partners and fans who were disappointed in our actions. We will learn from this and move on. As general manager, Ty Norris has been an integral part of Michael Waltrip Racing since its founding and has my and (co-owner) Rob Kauffman’s full support.”

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Michael Waltrip Racing PENALIZED Following Richmond Race, Newman Benefits

I'm surprised, but it looks like justice is being served by NASCAR after the questionable tactics that Michael Waltrip Racing appeared to pull off.

NASCAR came down with a hammer on MWR....  And Ryan Newman sees the light of day!!!

See the press release below


NASCAR Penalizes Michael Waltrip Racing
Following Event At Richmond International Raceway
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 9, 2013) – NASCAR has issued penalties to Michael Waltrip Racing following the sanctioning body’s review of Saturday’s race at Richmond International Raceway.

MWR was found to have violated Section 12-4 (Actions detrimental to stock car racing). As a result, MWR’s three teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (No. 15, 55, 56) have been penalized with the loss of 50 championship driver and 50 championship owner points, respectively.

These point penalties are assessed following the season’s 26th regular season race and not after the seeding for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Therefore, the point total for the No. 56 car driven by Martin Truex Jr. is reduced to 691, putting him in 17th position and eliminating him from the second Wild Card berth for the Chase field. Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 39 car, now moves up into the Chase as the second Wild Card participant.

NASCAR has also fined the MWR organization $300,000 and indefinitely suspended Ty Norris, MWR Executive Vice President/General Manager and spotter for the No. 55 car, for violating Section 12-4. The three crew chiefs – Brian Pattie (No. 15), Scott Miller (No. 55) and Chad Johnston (No. 56) – have all been placed on NASCAR probation until Dec. 31.

“Based upon our review of Saturday night’s race at Richmond, it is our determination that the MWR organization attempted to manipulate the outcome of the race,” said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR vice president of competition. “As the sport’s sanctioning body, it is our responsibility to ensure there is a fair and level playing field for all of our competitors and this action today reflects our commitment to that.”

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The Chase Contenders List, and Their Odds of Winning It

OK, first up, I'm not sure I'm going to really try to do all the math that will create the odds for who will win the NASCAR 2013 Championship title.

Nope.  But what I am going to do is look out our top-12 contenders and look real carefully at what they've done so far this season, and take my best guess at their shot at the title.

wins t5's t10's
1     Matt Kenseth  Leader  5 6 13
2     Jimmie Johnson  -3 4 9 15
3     Kyle Busch  -3 4 11 15
4     Kevin Harvick  -9 2 6 13
5     Carl Edwards  -9 2 8 13
6     Joey Logano  -12 1 8 14
7     Greg Biffle  -12 1 3 10
8     Clint Bowyer  -15 0 8 13
9     Dale Earnhardt Jr  -15 0 5 14
10     Kurt Busch  -15 0 8 13
11     Kasey Kahne  -15 2 8 11
12     Martin Truex Jr  -15 1 6 11

First up...

Usually, the top contenders in the list are the ones who will make it to the final race with any chance to take the trophy home.  Usually.  The back half of the field and wildcards are just spot fillers.

But ignoring their points structure, as they've been reseeded by NASCAR, I like looking at how they were positioned in points headed into Richmond as a clue as to what could happen in these last 10 races.

If I were to do that, I'd say that Jimmie Johnson, Clint Bowyer, Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch may very well have a shot at taking the title this year, as these were your top-5 in drivers points headed into Richmond.


Some guys turn it on this time of year while others try too hard and burn it off in these last 10 races leading up to Homestead.


Ryan Newman Lands A Ride in 2014

Ryan Newman walking into drivers meeting...

Good news for Ryan Newman fans... he's landing a ride with Richard Childress Racing in the No. 31 Chevy for the 2014 season!


And it seems that Caterpillar will be his sponsor for the year.

(Which seems like a contradictory bit of news, considering news headlines last week on Burton leaving the car was due to sponsorship.)

The No. 31 team (crew, chief, etc.) will be staying put from this year, and will be working on the momentum they're building for next year.

They say Newman will be a good fit.

And this could be a great move for Newman, putting him in a mainstream team that has good resources.  (I was worried he'd have problems going to an independent team, if that situation were to arise.)

Newman apparently had chatted with Richard Childress about five years ago about driving for them, but it wasn't in the cards then.  But obviously, with the situation at both SHR and RCR, well, now it worked out.

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Sunday, September 8, 2013

Is Edwards in Deep? Did Bowyer Really Do That?

NASCAR Released the following statement today (9-8-13):

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 8, 2013) – “NASCAR is reviewing Saturday night’s race at Richmond International Raceway per protocol and has no plans for further statement until that process is complete.

I'm wondering who they're talking about?  LOL.

OK, more than likely, it's that questionable last restart where Carl Edwards blew off the race leader, Paul Menard and got to the restart line before Menard.  It was so blatant a blind man could see it!

And Edwards was not black flagged for the deed.

That is where I think NASCAR is focused.

But then there's Michael Waltrip Racing.

That restart that allowed Carl Edwards to jump the start with three laps to go was brought about by a single-car spin by Clint Bowyer.

It was called a suspect spin by many last night and today.

If Bowyer had not spun, it looked like Ryan Newman, with a surmountable lead, would have won.  And that win would have eliminated Martin Truex Jr. from the season closing Chase for the Championship.

But instead, after a snag of a pit stop, Newman did not win the race and Martin Truex Jr. got into the Chase.

It's here that things start to look interesting, from the outside, looking in.

First up:

Statements from Dale Earnhardt Jr., who was behind Boyer when he spun, who said,

He just spun right out.  That’s the craziest thing I ever saw. He just came right around.

He was hemming around on the brakes and jerking the car around, and then the thing just spun out. It was crazy. I don’t know what was going on

Then there were statements made by Bowyer himself about the spin:

NASCAR Hits TV Ratings High Hopes While Ryan Newman Gets Trounced

NASCAR TV Ratings from Richmond

 Last night's Richmond race was the race to watch on TV, as drivers were getting seeded into the 2013 Chase for the Championship.

And the race delivered a pretty suspenseful evening as the laps started to wind down and some were in, some were not, depending on where in the field they were at what point in the closing laps we were in.

Poor Newman.
Ryan Newman got himself into the lead with ten laps to go.  This effectively had him eliminate MWR driver Martin Truex Jr. from the Chase.

But suddenly another MWR driver spun down the front stretch bringing out a caution.  Everyone up front pitted and Newman lost the lead in the pits.

If the race had stayed green, many think Newman would have won it and found himself in the Chase.  But via a fortuitous (or questionable) spin by his teammate, Truex found himself in the hunt to get into the Chase.  And he did, via a points tie-breaker over Newman.

Then there was the restart where Carl Edwards beat the race leader to the line on the restart.  You know that rule where back in June, Jimmie Johnson was black-flagged for "jumping the start" while Montoya bobbled, hung back (I mean never got going) and never let Johnson get back behind him?  Yea, that rule was in neutral last night it seems.

Yea, well, any way, if Edwards was dinged for that move, one wonders if Newman would have still lost to Truex?

Be it as it may, after the race, Newman said that his chances to win the race were eliminated because he did not have a championship contending pit crew.

Sure, Newman was upset at the time.  But one has to wonder if that also wasn't a shot at the team that let him go for lack of funding, then replaced him and added another team to the garage.

Be it as it may, (rumors suggest Newman is headed to RCR, if I heard right the other day), it is what it is.

But what's of interest to me this morning is that the estimation for last night's live programming TV ratings for NASCAR have it prety much tied with FOX's college football broadcast.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

RCCA Disappoints With Their Breast Cancer Awareness Diecasts

The other night I was looking through one of my latest catalogs from RCCA, the premium provider of NASCAR (and other racing) diecasts and took note of a particular section of the catalog.

You see, October is breast cancer awareness month.  In case you had not noticed, the pace car last weekend at Atlanta was PINK!  And throughout the month, you'll be spotting cars with pink highlights, if not completely pink, in and of itself.

This is the annual drive to make people aware of breast (and any other kind of) cancer that's out there.

One in eight women find themselves diagnosed with breast cancer, and it's a scary situation to find yourself and your loved in, if it ever happens to you.  (To be honest, 1 in 8 is a scary high number.  Go ahead, real quick, think about or look around and count the women in your vicinity...  see what I mean?)

Oh, and if you're a man, don't think you're immune either.

Though the number seems miniscule, or that it helps you think it "won't happen to me," think again, as every 1 in 10,000 men are diagnosed with breast cancer and a man dies every day from it.

Cancer is cancer, and it's a frightening, ugly experience to have to deal with.  It impacts 1 in 3 people.

But people can do many things to help the fight against breast cancer.

Donating to a charity of your choice that fights the good fight is noble.  And don't by shy.  Even a mere $1 can help.  (My premise behind that theory is if everyone watching a NASCAR race would chip in JUST ONE DOLLAR, and say 4million viewers are watching any one particular race, then we, as a whole, can make one hell of a contribution.)

Oh, but wait, so what about RCCA you ask?

I had come across their pink diecast pages in one of their latest catalogs and to be honest, though I'm on a budget, I was preparing to drop a pretty penny on one of their awareness diecasts.

But when I started looking around, I did not see anywhere, where RCCA would donate 'x' dollars from each purchase to the fight.  This is only an awareness campaign for selling pink NASCAR diecasts.  (Unless I totally missed the declaration itself, that is.)

For me, if I'm going to support it and buy stuff, I will only buy from a reputable source (RCCA is very reputable), but also, only from a source who will contribute part of my purchase price to the fight.

Or what the hell, just dig up some sites that deal directly with contributing and go from there.

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National Breast Cancer Foundation
National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Healthline Breast Cancer Anatomy
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So my only disappointment is the lack of contributions to the cause.  Last year, I took note that even though NASCAR was making you aware, they weren't doing much themselves in the contribution department.  It seemed that that premise lay solely on the drivers and teams shoulders.

But that's just me.

There's more on breast cancer at my parent site, if you're interested.
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Monday, September 2, 2013

Clinch Scenarios for Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup AT Richmond

Are you curious how some drivers are going to be able to get into the CHASE FOR THE CUP as they find themselves headed to Richmond?  Who has a decent or not so decent chance at making it into the The Chase?

Check out the press snippet NASCAR just sent out to the press:

Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Clinch Scenarios for Richmond
10 Drivers Vie for Five Remaining Spots

Below are the 2013 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup clinch scenarios for Saturday night's Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond International Raceway, the final race before the Chase field is set. Six drivers have clinched top-10 spots in the Chase: Jimmie Johnson, Clint Bowyer, Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards, Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth. Kasey Kahne, on the strength of two wins, has clinched at least a Wild Card spot
Four drivers control their top-10 clinching destiny. Regardless of the finishes of any other driver…

Dale Earnhardt Jr., currently seventh in points, will clinch a top-10 spot with a finish of 32nd or better, 33rd with at least one lap led or 34th with the most laps led.

Joey Logano, currently eighth in points, will clinch a top-10 spot with a finish of 11th or better, 12th and at least one lap led or 13th and the most laps led.

Greg Biffle, currently ninth in points, will clinch a top-10 spot with a finish of ninth or better, 10th and at least one lap led or 11th and the most laps led.

Kurt Busch, currently 10th in points, will clinch a top-10 spot by winning, finishing second with at least one lap led or finishing third with the most laps led.

The remaining mathematically eligible drivers need help to clinch a top-10 spot. Some, however, control their own Wild Card destiny (a win would guarantee at least a Wild Card spot).

Clinch scenarios for the remaining eligible drivers follow…

Jeff Gordon:  Currently 11th in points, Gordon would clinch at least a Wild Card spot with a victory at Richmond. Gordon, currently six points outside the top 10, remains eligible for a top 10 spot.

Kasey Kahne: Kahne, currently 12th in points, has already clinched at least a Wild Card spot. Ten points outside the top 10, Kahne remains eligible for a top 10 spot.

Martin Truex Jr.: Currently 13th in points, Truex would clinch at least a Wild Card spot with a victory at Richmond. Fifteen points outside the top 10, Truex remains eligible for a top 10 spot. Truex, currently holding the provisional No. 2 Wild Card spot, could clinch a Wild Card spot without a victory.

Ryan Newman: Currently 14th in points, Newman would clinch at least a Wild Card spot with a victory at Richmond. Twenty points outside the top 10, Newman remains eligible for a top 10 spot. Newman could clinch a Wild Card spot without a win (Logano and Biffle must remain in the top 10 or be replaced by Kahne; Newman must out-point Truex by six points; Gordon must not win; and Brad Keselowski or Jamie McMurray cannot win and overtake Newman).

Brad Keselowski: Currently 28 points outside the top 10, Keselowski remains eligible for a top-10 spot. Currently winless, Keselowski must win to be in contention for a Wild Card spot. Mathematically there will be at least two drivers outside the top 10 with wins. To clinch, Keselowski would need to win and outpoint Truex by 13 and Newman by eight (and would only need to outpoint one of these drivers if Kahne would displace a winless driver from the top 10). If Truex or Newman displaces Kurt Busch from the top 10, he would need to outpoint the other one-win driver remaining outside the top 10 by the requisite amount.

Jamie McMurray: Currently 39 points outside the top 10, McMurray remains eligible for a top-10 spot. Currently winless, McMurray must win to be in contention for a Wild Card spot. To clinch, McMurray would need to win and outpoint either Truex by 25 and Newman by 19 (and would only need to outpoint one of these drivers if Kahne would displace a winless driver from the top 10).  If Truex or Newman displace Kurt Busch from the top 10, he would need to outpoint the other one-win driver remaining outside the top 10 by the requisite amount.

Paul Menard: To clinch, Menard would need to win and outpoint Truex by 47 and Newman by 42 (and would only need to outpoint one of these drivers if Kahne would displace a winless driver from the top 10).  If Truex or Newman displace Kurt Busch from the top 10, he would need to outpoint the other one-win driver remaining outside the top 10 by the requisite amount.

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