NASCAR Sprint Cup Series News and Stats

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  • Entry List for the SpongeBob SquarePants 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway is posted, 44 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including: #18-Erik Jones, #32-Gase, #33-Ty Dillon, #34-Moffitt, #55-Ragan, #95-McDowell.
    Driver who need to be in the top-36 in speed and have no provisional available to them (lowest in owners points): #62-Gaughan (46th owners pts)
    Driver who would miss the race if qualifying is canceled (least race attempts): #95-McDowell (6 attempts)
    See the full entry list on's Kansas Entry List

  • Statement from Richard Childress: regarding final appeal ruling on the #31 Chevy team: "We do not agree with the final appeal ruling. We feel we had a compelling case and still fell we were in the right and the facts presented today would have proved that. We do appreciate the opportunity to be heard. We stand behind our suspended team members and look forward to their return. We will now move on and continue or goals of winning races and making the Chase for the Champion."(Richard Childress Racing)(5-6-2015)

  • Penalties against Newman's team upheld: Today the National Motorsports Final Appeals Officer, Mr. Bryan Moss, heard and considered the appeal of a P5 penalty issued on March 31, 2015 to Richard Childress (owner), Ryan Newman (driver), Lucas Lambert (crew chief), James Bender (tire technician) and Philip Surgen (race engineer) relative to NASCAR Sprint Cup Series vehicle #31 at Auto Club Speedway. The penalty concerns the following sections in the 2015 NASCAR rule book:
    12.1: Actions detrimental to stock car racing
    20.16: Wheels and tires
    A. Any device, modification, or procedure to the tire or wheel, including the valve stem hardware, that is used to release pressure, beyond normal pressure adjustments, from the tire and/or inner shield, will not be permitted.
    20.16.2: Tires
    F. Modifications to the tires, by treatment or any other means, will not be permitted. Minimum P5 Penalty Options (includes all four points below):
    A. Loss of 50 championship driver and owner points, regardless of whether the violation occurred during a Championship race or not
    B. $75,000-$125,000 fine
    C. Suspension for the next six series Championship Races, plus any non-championship races or special events which might occur during that time period, for the crew chief and any other team members as determined by NASCAR
    D. Probation through the end of the calendar year for all suspended members, or for a six-month period following the issuance of the penalty notice if that period spans across two consecutive seasons P5 Level infractions detected during post-race inspection:
    If the infraction is detected during post-race inspection, then the following penalty elements will be added to those listed previously in this section:
    A. Loss of an additional 25 Championship driver and owner points; regardless of whether it was a Championship Race or not
    B. Loss of an additional $50,000
    The original penalty assessed included a $125,000 ($75,000 plus $50,000) fine, six-race suspension and probation through Dec. 31 to Lambert; six-race suspension and probation through Dec. 31 to both Bender and Surgen; and the loss of 75 (50 plus 25) championship car owner and 75 (50 plus 25) championship driver points to both Childress and Newman.
    On April 16, a three-person National Motorsports Appeals Panel heard the appeal and made the following decisions:
    1. The Appellants violated the Rule or Rules set forth in the Penalty Notice and it is a P5 level violation.
    2. The Panel amends the original Penalty levied by NASCAR because there is no written explanation of what constitutes a post-race inspection. Therefore the Penalty elements added under Section are removed and the Penalty adjusted to:
    -Loss of 50 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Car Owner points for Richard Childress.
    -Loss of 50 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Driver points for Ryan Newman.
    -$75,000 fine. Suspended for the next six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Races, plus any non-Championship Races or Special Events which might occur during that time period. Placed on NASCAR probation through Dec. 31 for crew chief Lucas Lambert.
    - Suspended for the next six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Races, plus any non-Championship Races or Special Events which might occur during that time period. Placed on NASCAR probation through Dec. 31 for Tire Technician James Bender.
    -Suspended for the next six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Races, plus any non-Championship Races or Special Events which might occur during that time period. Placed on NASCAR probation through Dec. 31 for Race Engineer Philip Surgen.
    Upon hearing today's testimony, Bryan Moss, the National Motorsports Final Appeals Officer, made the following decisions:
    · Based on a preponderance of evidence, the Appellants violated the Rules.
    · Based on a preponderance of evidence, the National Motorsports Final Appeals Officer upholds the penalty as amended by the National Motorsports Appeals Panel.
    The decision of the National Motorsports Final Appeals Officer is final and binding on all parties.

  • Stewart-Haas Racing Classic Paint Scheme Program at Darlington: With the NASCAR Hall of Fame serving as an appropriate backdrop, reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Kevin Harvick unveiled the gold-and-black #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John's Chevy SS that he will race in the Sept. 6 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway as part of the track's The Tradition Returns weekend Sept. 4-6. The retro-themed, commemorative paint scheme mimics the first can Budweiser produced, which was gold and featured an eagle flying through the Anheuser-Busch stylized "A" with five stars above and below the winged crest. Below the eagle, Budweiser is spelled out in block letters with "Lager Beer" in script. The design is part of an overall throwback weekend at one of NASCAR's oldest venues. Built in 1949 by Harold Brasington, Darlington has hosted Sprint Cup races since 1950, and last year Harvick won the 65th running of the iconic Southern 500 - one of the crown-jewel races on the 36-race Sprint Cup schedule. Paint schemes for the full stable of SHR drivers will be revealed in the weeks leading up to the Southern 500.(Stewart-Haas Racing), see an image of the car on the #4 team paint schemes page.(5-6-2015)

  • Kansas Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Camping World Truck Series will run the same combination of left- and right-side tires at Kansas this weekend . . . while these teams ran this left-side tire code (D-4604) at this track last season, this is the first time they have run this right-side code (D-4630) at Kansas . . . for Sprint Cup teams, compared to what they ran in at Kansas in 2014, this right-side tire features a construction change that brings it into line with what is run at other speedways . . . Cup teams have run this right-side at both Las Vegas and Talladega already this season . . . for Camping World Truck teams, who ran their own right-side at Kansas last May, this tire features both a construction and slight compound change . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners in all four tire positions at Kansas . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.(Goodyear), see tire pressures, limites, sets and codes on the Kansas Race Info page - Tire Facts section.(5-6-2015)

  • NAPA Auto Parts will sponsor Elliott in the #24: NAPA Auto Parts will grow its relationship with 11-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports in 2016 when it becomes the majority sponsor of driver Chase Elliott and his #24 Chevy SS team. The news was announced Tuesday evening in Las Vegas during the NAPA EXPO, which is attended by more than 17,000 store owners, managers and dealers. The expanded partnership will feature NAPA AUTO PARTS as a primary sponsor of the #24 team in 24 Sprint Cup races annually, including the season-opening Daytona 500, and as an associate-level partner in all other events. The agreement covers the 2016, 2017 and 2018 seasons. NAPA was the full-season primary sponsor during Elliott's historic 2014 XFINITY Series campaign when he became NASCAR's youngest-ever national series champion while earning rookie of the year and most popular driver honors. In 2015, NAPA remains the sole primary sponsor for Elliott's second full NXS season with JR Motorsports along with the driver's Sprint Cup debut schedule, which includes five points-paying races with Hendrick Motorsports. It was announced in January that Elliott, 19, will join Hendrick Motorsports as a full-time Sprint Cup driver in 2016. The Dawsonville, Georgia, native currently is third in the 2015 NXS standings with seven top-10 finishes in nine races. In 51 combined NXS and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series events, he has recorded four wins, 25 top-five finishes and 40 top-10s.Additional sponsorship for Elliott's 2016 Sprint Cup season will be announced at a later date.(Hendrick Motorsports)(5-6-2015)

  • NASCAR still considering 2016 rules package: NASCAR seems to be backing off on more changes to Sprint Cup Series cars next season. After scrapping plans to use a proposed 2016 rules package in the Sprint All-Star Race, NASCAR executive vice president Steve O'Donnell said Tuesday the sanctioning body might stick with 2015 regulations next year. "I think we're still developing what the 2016 package could be," O'Donnell said. "It could very well be the 2015 package." O'Donnell said the uncertainty was a major reason the series decided not to feature the rules in the All-Star event, which will take place May 16 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. "To go down a path that we felt still potentially needed testing, we didn't think was the right thing to do," O'Donnell said. After a decrease of 125 horsepower and a 30 percent reduction in downforce, the plan was for a larger cut in downforce in 2016. But there has been some grumbling among team owners about bearing the costs of a significant rules change for the second consecutive season, and O'Donnell said there had been some pushback among the feedback solicited in the garage. "I think it's all over the board," he said. "Some of the drivers would say they'd like to pursue a different direction. Some like it as is who have had success. From the owner standpoint, we certainly have to manage what we're looking at for '15 or '16 and manage constantly putting new rules in front of them. So that's where we're at today." The goal is to have the 2016 rules finalized by Aug. 1, about two months ahead of when the 2015 rules were released. "We're looking at a number of different options for '16, including staying where we are," O'Donnell said. "So we'll evaluate everything and what we feel like has the best chance of success on the track."(NBC Sports)(5-6-2015)

  • Harvick feels Sprint Cup schedule is Stagnant: #4-Kevin Harvick, met with members of the media at Talladega Superspeedway and discussed his thoughts on the current NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule:
    Harvick: "I mean the last three races that we went to last year were sold out. I don't know that is a 100 percent true statement. I think it just depends on where you go and what you do. Now, if you want to talk about growing the sport I believe that some venues need one race. I believe that the schedule needs to be mixed up. People like things that change they don't like stagnant things. In my opinion the most stagnant thing in our sport is our schedule and our venues that we go to. You can beat a dead horse as much as you want, but it doesn't come back to life. And sometimes you just have to change things up to keep the excitement and enthusiasm in the sport. I think our schedule is definitely the weak link along with some of the venues that we go to. That is my opinion."
    Harvick: "I know the first place I would go is Iowa. I think that everybody wants to see more short tracks and more venues. I think road racing - we have a couple of road races on the schedule and most every team has two road race cars and spends a lot of money on their road race program. Adding a road race here or there would definitely be something that I would vote for just for the fact internationally road racing is very recognizable to race fans. Whether it be Formula 1 or any other form of racing there are not many ovals. You could take your pick on road courses, Montreal (Canada) does a great job, you could go to Laguna Seca (California), you could go anywhere in the world and race on a road course. There are lots of good venues. I would have to really think about the rest of the question. I have always been a fan of let's go to the banquet and roll the pills around of race tracks across the country and have a wild card race every year. Go to the Milwaukee (Wisconsin) Mile and really you could go to test these venues and see how the markets react. And see the reaction you get from the market, even if you only have 30 or 40 thousand people in the grandstands if you put on a good event for TV and do the things that it takes to have a unique event that is really what people want. They want unique things."(Team Chevy)(5-2-2015)
    UPDATE: Despite Kevin Harvick's concerns about NASCAR's schedule becoming "stagnant," NASCAR executive vice president Steve O'Donnell said officials remain comfortable with the current calendar. "We're happy with the schedule we have," O'Donnell said Tuesday. "We certainly look at what's available to us, but the schedule we have in place, I think the tracks are doing a tremendous job of helping to promote the sport. We certainly have dialogue with Kevin and everyone's got an opinion on the schedule." O'Donnell said there were "so many factors" including weather and a track's position on the schedule, that made officials "comfortable" with the current calendar.(USA Today)(5-6-2015)

  • Allstate Peterbilt Group debuts with Annett: As the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to Kansas Speedway for the 11th race of the 2015 season, Allstate Peterbilt Group, the upper Midwest's largest truck dealer group and a longtime partner of Michael Annett dating back to his time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, prepares for its first race of the season adorning the #46 Chevy SS as the primary partner for the weekend. It was last featured on Annett's car last fall at Martinsville Speedway.(HScott Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #46 team paint schemes page.(5-6-2015)

  • Special Red Cross scheme for Gordon: The American Red Cross and 3M are entering the eighth year of the successful and innovative partnership, Red Cross Racing. This year, the #24 American Red Cross Chevy SS is a SleevesUp design to encourage fans to roll their sleeves up and make an appointment to give blood. Race fans can pledge to give on Gordon's personal SleevesUp Campaign page.The goal is 400 donors - one for each mile of the race in Kansas.(Hendrick Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #24 team paint schemes page.(5-6-2015)

  • NASCAR Next Class named: Five of the six NASCAR K&N Pro Series race winners in 2015 are 21 years old or younger. The championship points leaders in both the East and West are 17 and 16, respectively. And a 17-year-old just became the highest-finishing female in the 61-year history of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West. It is fitting that as fans celebrate Jeff Gordon's final year of competition, the ranks of NASCAR are filled with young drivers battling to one day fill that void. And on Tuesday, in a building that honors the sport's history, NASCAR introduced some of those potential future stars of the sport. During a ceremony at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina, 12 drivers were formally announced as the newest NASCAR Next class, a group of up-and-coming talent that joins the industry program aimed at spotlighting NASCAR's emerging stars. Now in its fifth season, the career resume of NASCAR Next alumni is impressive, highlighted by Chase Elliott's 2014 NASCAR XFINITY Series championship, Kyle Larson's 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award, and Cole Custer's September 2014 win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, making him the youngest winner in NASCAR national series history. Of the 28 drivers previously selected for the program, 21 have raced in one of NASCAR's three national series (NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series), and 11 are competing full-time there in 2015. The team was selected through an evaluation process that included input from industry executives and veteran racers. Drivers must be between the ages of 15-25, have tangible and expressed goals in eventual competition in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and demonstrate the potential to realize that goal.(NASCAR), see the complete list of members on the Driver Development page.(5-6-2015)

  • Kansas Speedway Notes & Facts - Wednesday - history:
    · Groundbreaking was held on May 25, 1999.
    · The official opening of Kansas Speedway was in 2001, with the first events being an ARCA race and a NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race on the same day - June 2.
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race was on Sept. 30, 2001 - won by Jeff Gordon.
    · During the 2012 season, between the April and October events the 1.5-mile track underwent a repave adding variable banking in the corners.

  • Manion replaces Blickensderfer as crew chief for Hornish UPDATE: In an effort to further the chemistry of the #9 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race team, Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) announced Kevin Manion has been assigned as the crew chief of that team with driver Sam Hornish, Jr. Manion will begin his duties immediately and call the race this weekend at Kansas Speedway. Manion, a native of Boylston, Mass., is a championship-winning crew chief and was a part of leading Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing to wins at both the Daytona 500 and the Brickyard 400 in 2010. Manion has five wins in the premier Sprint Cup Series and 15 wins in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. In addition, he has led his race teams to over 60 Top-10 and 25 Top-Five finishes in his Cup career. He also has 10 poles. Having success with different drivers with different racing backgrounds, Manion has led the sports best including Martin Truex, Jr. during his XFINITY and early Sprint Cup Series career. During his time with Truex, Jr., Manion earned two XFINITY Series championships. He then became a trusted leader to Jamie McMurray, leading him to four Sprint Cup Series wins. Manion is a respected crew chief in NASCAR and has the experience to get the #9 team in victory lane. Manion will begin his duties with RPM immedialty. Manion replaces Drew Blickensderfer who has been offered another position within the organization.(RPM)(5-5-2015)
    UPDATE: In light of the recent departure of Kevin "Bono" Manion, Tommy Baldwin Racing has announced that team owner Tommy Baldwin will assume the role as crew chief of the #7 Chevy, for driver Alex Bowman. "I'm very happy for Bono; we've been friends a long time, and I wish him nothing but the best," said Baldwin. "Climbing atop the pit box is somewhat of a familiar role for me and I look forward to working with Alex." Baldwin, in his seventh year of a being a Sprint Cup Series team owner, is no stranger to the position - having numerous wins and a Daytona 500 championship in 2002. Baldwin's return will take effect immediately.(TBR)(5-5-2015)

  • Chase Elliott to compete in All-Star Showdown: Hendrick Motorsports already has four cars eligible for this year's Sprint All-Star Race. Chase Elliott hopes he can make it five. On Tuesday, Charlotte Motor Speedway announced during a media event that Elliott will drive the #25 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevy SS in the Sprint Showdown with a chance to earn his way into the All-Star Race. "I couldn't be more excited about the opportunity to run the Showdown," Elliott said. "It allows me to gain more experience with my NAPA AUTO PARTS team before we race again at Charlotte a week later." Elliott's next points-paying race will take place on May 24 at Charlotte Motor Speedway - the weekend following the Sprint Showdown and All-Star Race. The Sprint Showdown consists of two 20-lap segments, and if he were to make the All-Star Race, this year's event is now 110 laps. "Those additional laps will be a tremendous benefit when it's time to run 600 miles," Elliott said.(Hendrick Motorsports)(5-5-2015)

  • Ty Dillon in the #33 Plankton Chevy at Kansas: The SpongeBob SquarePants team just welcomed another of its friends to the field for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway on May 9, 2015, -- with NASCAR young star Ty Dillon set to drive the #33 Plankton Chevy SS. Dillon's #33 Chevy, campaigned by Circle Sport Racing, will feature Plankton, the show's pint-sized microbe with an evil plan... to steal the Krusty Krabs' secret Krabby Patty recipe! But Dillon has designs on stealing the coveted SpongeBob SquarePants 400 trophy instead. Dillon will be making his fourth career Sprint Cup Series start and his career debut at the 1.5-mile speedway. Dillon last drove in a Sprint Cup Series event at Daytona International Speedway earlier this season. The 23-year-old, Welcome, N.C.-native is currently the NASCAR XFINITY Series points leader in his second full-time season in the #3 Chevy Camaro.(Richard Childress Racing), see an image of the car on the #33 team paint schemes page.(5-5-2015)

  • NASCAR's reason for not throwing yellow flag on last lap at Talladega: On the final lap [of a race], NASCAR's stance is to 'let 'em play". When NASCAR Senior Vice President Steve O'Donnell joined SiriusXM NASCAR Radio he acknowledged that while Sunday's decision in the Geico 500 [at Talladega Superspeedway] was indeed "a judgment call," fans prefer to see races end under green flag conditions. "It's going to be a judgment call," O'Donnell said. "We've stated that we're going to make every effort to try and finish a race under green conditions - that's what the fans want to see. But we have to be obviously mindful of what's occurring on the track. It's a split-second decision. I think if you go back to Daytona, where we saw a driver hit the wall at what we thought to be fairly hard and wanted to dispatch our emergency crews quickly, we elected to throw the caution. If you look at yesterday, if you saw the circumstances that played out with Carl [Edwards], when we initially saw him get loose, he was down on the apron. As we made that quick decision, it was 'ok, he's clear we can go'. Just as we make that, his car slides up the track and that's something you don't want to see green or yellow flag conditions. But at the time, if we would have thrown the yellow, then it's already too late because he's already up and across the track. We elected to let it play out. We certainly didn't like to see how Carl come across the track but ultimately, we were able to come back under green flag conditions." O'Donnell plans to discuss Talladega with the drivers. He also realizes that some fans might feel that NASCAR was late to make a call due to who might or might not be leading a race at the time. However, he reiterated that the sanctioning body reacts no differently than an umpire calling balls and strikes in baseball.(Motorsport)(5-5-2015)

  • Talladega TV Ratings: NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Talladega drew a 3.8 overnight rating on FOX Sunday afternoon, down 5% from last year (4.0), down 14% from 2013 (4.4), and the lowest overnight for the spring Talladega race since at least 1998 (excludes rainouts). The previous low was last year's 4.0. Despite the lower numbers, NASCAR on FOX tied the weekend's second-highest overnight for any sporting event on broadcast. The 3.8 matched a Grizzlies/Warriors NBA playoff game on ABC and trailed only the Kentucky Derby on NBC (10.8). Keep in mind two of the weekend's major sporting events - the Spurs/Clippers playoff game on ABC and the Floyd Mayweather/Manny Pacquiao boxing fight on pay-per-view - did not air on broadcast. The 3.8 also ranks as the top NASCAR overnight since Fontana in March (4.0), with the caveat that two of the four races since were postponed and a third aired on Fox Sports 1.(Sports Media Watch / Sports Business Daily)
    For TV Ratings fior the season, 5-year comparison chart, see the 2015 TV Ratings page.(5-5-2015)

  • Quite a few career best finishes at Talladega: Four drivers recorded their Sprint Cup Series career best finishes in the GEICO 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superespeedway:
    #21-Ryan Blaney finished 4th in his 6th career start.
    #98-Josh Wise finished 10th in his 113th career start.
    #35-Cole Whitt finished 13th in his 60th career start.
    #83-Matt DiBenedetto finished 18th in his 7th career start.
    #9-Sam Hornish Jr. finished 6th, his first top-ten since Watkins Glen in 2012 when he finished 5th. This season is the first full-time season for Hornish since the 2010 season.(5-5-2015)

  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Kansas
    #48-Jimmie Johnson........................ 112.1
    #20-Matt Kenseth............................. 105.6
    #42-Kyle Larson............................... 103.9
    #16-Greg Biffle................................ 102.8
    #24-Jeff Gordon.............................. 100.5
    #4-Kevin Harvick............................ 100.4
    #19-Carl Edwards.............................. 96.8
    #14-Tony Stewart............................... 95.3
    #5-Kasey Kahne.............................. 92.7
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr........................ 91.3
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2014 races (14 total) among active drivers at Kansas Speedway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at

  • Earnhardt Jr.'s crew chief almost missed the race: Greg Ives, the crew chief for #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., won his first race in Sprint Cup, but he nearly missed the race. On Saturday, his eight-year-old daughter Payton broke her arm in a playground accident, requiring surgery. Earnhardt offered to fly Ives back to Charlotte to be with his daughter, but Payton talked her father into remaining at Talladega. "I wanted to give him that obligation to choose," Earnhardt said. "She's tough as nails and she told him not to come home. She was mad at him for the call he (made) in Richmond." Earnhardt related encountering a downcast Ives after that race, only to learn that "he's worried about what she's going to tell him when he got home. It's good she keeps him honest."(NASCAR Wire Service)(5-4-2015)

  • Kyle Busch tests late model UPDATE: Following a 10-week absence from a race car, Kyle Busch got behind the wheel of a Late Model last week. Busch, the driver of the #18 M&Ms Toyota, has been sidelined since he sustained injuries to his foot and right leg during an accident in the XFINITY Series race at Daytona International Speedway on Feb. 21. "We have a program for him and we're moving forward with everything - and that was part of it," team owner Joe Gibbs said of Busch's test, prior to the Geico 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday. Gibbs did not recall where Busch tested his Kyle Busch Motorsports car, however, the team was expected to run at nearby Caraway Speedway, a .455-mile track in Asheboro, N.C. or Hickory Speedway. Busch is expected to return to Hickory this week in a KBM Late Model. NASCAR spokesman David Higdon said he had not heard whether Busch had been medically cleared to return to competition. Busch met with the media on April 15. At the time, Busch said his doctors had not offered a timetable for his return. Erik Jones is scheduled to drive the No. 18 M&Ms Toyota next week at Kansas Speedway, but speculation is that Busch will be in the car for the All Star race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 16th. During his media availability, Busch said he hoped to be eligible for the Chase for the Sprint Cup. Last month, NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France told a group of sports editors that depending on when Busch returned "it was more likely than not," that the sanctioning body would attempt to "accommodate" the driver.(Motorsport)(5-4-2015)
    UPDATE: Kyle Busch tweeted Monday morning that he will not compete in a Late Model race this weekend despite reports that he was expected to compete in an event at Hickory Motor Speedway. Busch tested a Late Model car Friday as part of his return to racing after being injured in the season-opening NASCAR Xfinity race at Daytona.(NBC Sports)(5-4-2015)

  • #51 Pit crew member ejected at Talladega for not wearing protective gear: A crew member from #51-Justin Allgaier's team was ejected from the GEICO 500 on Sunday when he was found handling a fuel can behind pit wall without wearing a helmet or head sock. Mark O'Donnell was removed from Sunday's Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway, the 2.66-mile trioval. Pit road fire safety has become a bigger issue recently after a blaze in an XFINITY Series race at Richmond injured three crewman from two different teams. A minor fire also erupted from a gas can during a #31-Ryan Newman pit stop on Sunday.(USA Today)(5-4-2015)

  • Talladega Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 2015 Geico 500: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday's race. Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 1:00 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 4:41 PM (all times are EST). FOX was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 134
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 69
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 129
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 66
    Number of 'Side-by-Side' commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 5
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 5
    Number of times Fox utilized 'Side-by-Side' commercials during this broadcast: 1
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast (including company logos 'floating' in corners of the screen): 77
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 5 min. 20 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 1:00 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 4:41 PM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 221
    Minutes of race broadcast: 165
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 56
    Minutes of 'Side-by-Side' commercials (split-screen): 2
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of 'mystery cautions' (debris not shown): 1
    Total race brdcst time 165 Total comm. brdcst time 56
    See full reports, sponsor links, much more details at

  • Jones says Kansas one race deal in the #18...for now: from a Toyota Racing transcript, Erik Jones, who will run the #18 Toyota at Kansas in the Sprint Cup Series race, was asked a few questions about his first Cup start:
    Q) What will your expectations be for the NSCS race at Kansas in the #18 Camry?
    Jones: "For me, it's really all seat time and experience. I think keeping our expectations realistic is a pretty big thing for us. If we can go run top-15, I'd feel like that would be a pretty big win for us. It's a big step. We've talked a lot about it. I've talked with Adam Stevens (18 crew chief) a lot about it and kind of what the jump is and talked to Kyle (Busch) about it. It's not going to be an easy step for anybody, but I really believe we can go run top-15 and if we can do that, I think that would be a good day."
    Q) Have you had any discussion of the conflict weekends in June with the NCWTS schedule?
    Jones: "No, I haven't. For right now, Kansas is the only race I've got in the 18 so beyond that I honestly don't know. Sure, I'd love to run it again. I think it would be fun, but we'll really just have to see how things go. I'm just going to run Kansas, do my deal there, do the best I can and see what happens."
    Q) Is Joe Gibbs Racing only telling you about racing Kansas and not beyond?
    Jones: "Honestly, just Kansas at this point, that's all I heard. I've seen it too and I saw it 20 minutes ago where it says, 'Until he (Kyle Busch) returns.' Honestly, Kansas is the only one I know of right now."(Toyota Racing)(5-4-2015)

  • Edwards upset with NASCAR drivers not slowing for spin: As #19-Carl Edwards spun on the final lap Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR didn't throw the caution, and maybe the only person he knows who lifted off the throttle was his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate #20-Matt Kenseth. While Kenseth said he was "dumbfounded" there was no caution, Edwards was more upset at his competitors following the Geico 500, which #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. won for his sixth career victory at Talladega. The decision to throw the caution on the last lap has been a judgment call for NASCAR, which wants races to finish under green but, as it did in the Daytona 500, it will throw the caution on the final lap if it feels the need to dispatch emergency vehicles immediately. "Because there was a wreck at the end of the Daytona 500, I slowed down, and it cost us a bunch of positions," Edwards said. "I guess some people would say, 'Well, hell, your job is to stay on the throttle and go race,' but, man, we're all out here and we're all human beings. You've got a guy wrecking, you can't just lay into his door. That's pretty dangerous." No one actually hit Edwards in the door, but he obviously felt the potential was there for him to suffer a serious injury. He said he believes #51-Justin Allgaier went by him at 160 or 180 mph. "We make every effort to try to finish under green flag conditions," NASCAR Sprint Cup Series director Richard Buck said in a statement. "We believe the circumstances that occurred allowed us to do that today." Some drivers will keep the throttle to the floor until told there is a caution and also won't lift in the hopes that a spinning car in front of them will spin away before they make contact.
    "Generally, if someone is spinning in front of you, you slow down a little bit, so if you do hit him, you don't break their legs or hurt them," said Edwards, who saw a potential top-10 finish turn into a 32nd-place day. "I don't want to rant too much about it, but I was frustrated with that." Kenseth, who lost some spots and finished 25th, also left frustrated. "I had to lift so I didn't send Carl to the hospital," Kenseth said. "I'm just dumbfounded that NASCAR didn't throw a caution. We were driving past wrecked cars for half a lap at 180 mph. It was a crazy ending."(ESPN)(5-4-2015)

  • Richmond spring race could be moved to Sunday: International Speedway Corp., is exploring the possibility of moving the start of the spring Richmond race from Saturday night to Sunday afternoon, an ISC official told NBC Sports. "I'm not going to say seriously, but we are exploring it,'' said Clay Campbell, president of Martinsville Speedway, who also oversees Richmond International Raceway and Darlington Raceway for International Speedway Corp. "We're always entertaining whatever can make our events better for the broadcasters, for the fans and for the competitors and that's part of it.'' There are other considerations. ISC, as part of its typical post-event critique, is examining how far Richmond's ticket holders travel to attend that race. "If we run Saturday night, there are so many fans that are not staying there or not staying on property or not staying in the region and they drive back home in the middle of the night,'' Campbell said. "How many that is versus if we did it Sunday and they could leave right after the race and drive home - that's things we need to look at and do some questioning with our fanbase.''(NBC Sports)(5-4-2015)

  • Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins at Talladega: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the GEICO 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway for his 1st win of the season, 6th win at Talladega and his 24th career win. The win is the first Sprint Cup Series race win for #88 crew chief Greg Ives.
    #48-Johnson finished 2nd [the 45th 2nd place finish of his career] followed by #27-Menard, #21-Blaney (best career finish), #78-Truex Jr., #31-Newman, #9-Hornish Jr., #4-Harvick, #11-Hamlin and #98-Wise (his career best finish).
    Harvick maintains the points / Chase lead with 394, 40 points over #78-Truex Jr.
    Pole winner #24-Gordon led 47 laps and ran up front most of the race until late in the race when he sped on pit road and had to start at the rear, then was caught up in #19-Edwards wreck at the end of the race.
    There were 27 lead changes among 15 drivers. There were 6 cautions for 23 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 159.487mph.
    See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Penalty Report (pdf) and Lap Summary Report (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(5-3/4-2015)

  • Parsons selling #98 team? Phil Parsons declined comment on Saturday regarding the sale of the #98 Phoenix Construction Ford. Sources told the #98 team struck a deal with Jay Robinson on Wednesday night. Robinson, who fields the #62 Premium Motorsports Chevy with Brendan Gaughan (and a 2nd part-time team, #66), could not be immediately reached for comment. Josh Wise currently pilots the #98 Phil Parsons Racing Ford, which currently lists Mike Curb as the owner.(Motorsport)(5-3-2015)

  • Hendrick to be honored: America's Car Museum (ACM) will award the Nicola Bulgari Award to Hendrick Motorsports owner, Hendrick Automotive Group chairman and automobile collector Rick Hendrick, to recognize his contributions to the automotive industry and promoting America's automotive heritage. The award will be given on June 26th at ACM's Wheels & Heels Annual Gala. The Nicola Bulgari Award, named after the famous luxury jewelry designer and avid car collector, is awarded annually to individuals who make significant contributions to preserving America's automotive heritage through education, car restoration and collecting classic cars. Past recipients include Dr. Frederick Simeone, founder of the Simeone automotive Museum, Edward Welburn, vice president of global design for General Motors and McKeel Hagerty, president and CEO of Hagerty.(HMS)(5-3-2015)

  • BK Racing Launches Eight-Week American Salute Campaign: BK Racing announced that the team will participate in an eight-week American Salute Campaign, starting at Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina May 24th. JJ Yeley, driver of the #23 Toyota, will run a special "We Salute You" scheme in honor of our fallen military Memorial Day weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Fans can give $10 through the BK Racing website, and submit a fallen service member's name, and the name will appear on the hood and rear quarter panels of the #23 Toyota for the Coca-Cola 600. In addition, BK Racing will donate a portion of the proceeds back to Hope For The Warriors, a nonprofit organization that provides comprehensive support programs for service members, veterans and military families.
    "I am honored to be able to salute our men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom, through NASCAR and our organization," said team owner Ron Devine. "I believe it's important to remember our military and their families. It's also great to be able to partner with an organization like Hope For The Warriors, who provide support and resources for our active military. I encourage everyone to get online, submit names, and help us say 'Thank You' to our servicemen and women."
    "The names that BK Racing will be display on JJ Yeley's car are the men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our country. They are the men and women whose names stay in our hearts and minds everyday, and especially in the month of May," said Travis Hanson, Hope For The Warriors, Senior Director of Sports and Recreation. "Hope For The Warriors is thankful to NASCAR fans for the honor and recognition they give to our service members, veterans and the sacrifice of our military families."
    Visit the BK Racing website to submit names for the American Salute Campaign. BK Racing is honored to give back to our men and women who continue to serve this country and protect the freedom of this beautiful country, the United States of America. Stay up to date with news and information about the team through the BK Racing website,, or through social media on Twitter and Facebook.(BK Racing), see an image of the scheme Yeley will run on the #23 Team Schemes page.(5-2-2015)

  • Team Penske partners with Avaya: Team Penske announced that it has partnered with Avaya as a team sponsor for the 2015 season in both the Verizon IndyCar Series and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Simon Pagenaud will pilot the #22 Avaya Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet for at least four Verizon IndyCar Series events in his first season with Team Penske, including the 99th running of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 24. Avaya will also adorn the side of the #2 Ford Fusion driven by Brad Keselowski in the Sprint Cup Series event at Kansas Speedway on Saturday, May 9.
    The Avaya partnership was fostered through the established, long-term relationship between Team Penske and HP. Together, Avaya and HP Enterprise Services are delivering infrastructure modernization services, including Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) OnAvaya and Customer Engagement as a Service OnAvaya to help customers rapidly deploy enterprise team and customer engagement solutions as they transition to a "New Style of Business." As technology continues to revolutionize communications in racing, the partnership between the three organizations is a winning combination for all. The new relationship with Team Penske is the latest sports partnership for Avaya as the company continues to build its brand by working with winning programs - see the full list at Avaya will make its debut in the Sprint Cup Series when the company will be the primary sponsor of the #2 Ford Fusion driven by Keselowski at Kansas Speedway on Saturday night, May 9. Keselowski, the 2012 Sprint Cup Series Champion, will be looking for his second-career Kansas win, with his first coming in 2011. "It's always great to see global companies come into our sport," said Keselowski. "We'll be excited to welcome Avaya to the #2 team that night in Kansas. Our goal is always to go out there and win with all of our partners and it would be great to bring Avaya on board at Team Penske with a trip to Victory Lane in Kansas."(Team Penske), see an image of the car on the #2 Team Scheme page.(5-1-2015)

  • Nickelodeon announces driver lineup for SpongeBob SquarePants 400 weekend: Nickelodeon's SpongeBob SquarePants will take over Kansas Speedway, for the SpongeBob SquarePants 400 weekend, May 8-9. The world's most famous sponge and his Bikini Bottom friends will take an adventurous ride on the cars of four NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers, all vying to win the coveted SpongeBob SquarePants 400 trophy. The SpongeBob SquarePants 400 will feature an all-star NASCAR Sprint Cup lineup including:
    Greg Biffle, driving the #16 Cheez-It/ Patrick Star Ford Fusion
    Michael McDowell, driving the #95 WRL/Larry the Lobster Ford Fusion
    Casey Mears, driving the #13 Squidward Tentacles Chevrolet SS
    David Ragan, driving the #55 Aarons/SpongeBob SquarePants Toyota Camry
    NASCAR driver Ben Kennedy will join in on the fun when he takes out his #11 Local Motors/ SpongeBob SquarePants Toyota Tundra for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Kansas Speedway on Friday, May 8. Additionally, NASCAR XFINITY Series star Bubba Wallace will pilot the #6 SpongeBob SquarePants Ford Mustang for the Winn-Dixie XFINITY Series race on Saturday, May 2. His Ford machine will feature SpongeBob SquarePants and his friends Patrick, SquidWard, Mr. Krabs and Sandy Cheeks.
    "It's really fun to be part of the Nickelodeon lineup for the Kansas race and get to feature Patrick Star and Cheez-It on our No. 16 Ford," said Biffle, who boasts a pair of victories on the 1.5-mile oval at Kansas. "Nickelodeon does a lot to bring sports to kids, which is something that is important and I'm glad to be a part of it. Kansas is a good track for us and Saturday night races are always exciting. Hopefully we can get another Kansas win."
    Also at the speedway, attendees will be able to enjoy some pre-Mother's Day fun in the Nickelodeon Kids Zone, which will be located in the Kansas Speedway Fan Zone. The area will feature appearances from the SpongeBob SquarePants costumed characters, a SpongeBob SquarePants photo station and more.
    On Wednesday, May 13, Nickelodeon will air episodes of Hammer Down, a docu-series produced by NASCAR Productions, in a special racing-themed night during the NickSportsprogramming block on Nicktoons. Hammer Down is an original, four-episode series featuring four of NASCAR's rising stars--Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney, Darrell Wallace Jr. and Kenzie Ruston-that give fans an all-access pass into the young athletes' lives as they aspire to become elite NASCAR drivers, while also enjoying time with friends and coming of age as young adults. The NickSports programming block airs every Wednesday, from 9:00-11:00 pm (ET/PT).(Nickelodeon/VMG)(5-1-2015)

  • added the four SpongeBob SquarePants schemes that will run at Kansas: #13 Squidward Tentacles, #16 Cheez-It / Patrick Star, #55 Aarons / SpongeBob SquarePants, #95 WRL / Larry the Lobster

  • Erik Jones to drive the #18 JGR car starting at Kansas: Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) announced that Erik Jones will fill in for Kyle Busch in the #18 M&M'S Toyota Camry in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) starting at Kansas Speedway on May 9, 2015. This will mark the 18-year-old Byron, Michigan native's first official NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start. "I'm pretty excited and grateful for the opportunity to drive the #18 M&M'S Toyota Camry in the Sprint Cup Series and make my debut for Joe Gibbs Racing. This is a really good opportunity for me. We are going to try to manage our expectations and if we can go out and get a top-15 run and gain some experience, that would be a great day for us. I'm also excited about representing M&M'S, a great longtime partner at JGR and such a well-known brand. I am looking forward to getting behind the wheel of the M&M'S Toyota at Kansas." At Kansas, Jones will be running a special paint scheme highlighting M&M'S support of Red Nose Day on the #18 M&M's Toyota. Mars is proud to be a partner of Red Nose Day, a major charitable event that will be held on May 21, 2015. The M&M'S Brand is one of the world's most beloved chocolate candies and a leader in colorful fun, so it's a natural fit to leverage the M&M'S brand and humor to help raise money through this partnership. M&M'S is bringing Red Nose Day to NASCAR for the first time at Kansas and May 15 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Jones currently runs full-time in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) for Kyle Busch Motorsports and a partial schedule for Joe Gibbs Racing in the NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS). Kansas will mark Jones first official Cup Series start, but earlier this season he was able to make laps in the #11 Toyota Camry at Bristol Motor Speedway after Denny Hamlin was unable to continue the race following an extended rain delay. Jones finished the race in the 26th position (which was credited to Hamlin).(JGR)(4-30-2015)

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added a 2nd HEAP of new links
on MAY 6, 2015
to the Article Links page, including.......

NOTE: the 20-25 links that seemed the most interesting to me are posted in the basic order they are shown on the Article / Column / Blog Links page with approx 10 days worth of links

Born on Dates / Birthday's

Born in MAY

6 Mike Borkowski, Tammy Jo Kirk, Jeff Hancock, Dean Mozingo, Gina Henson

7 Dave Steele, Danny O'Quinn Jr.

8 Bobby Labonte, Nathan Buttke, Don Hume, Jay Stewart, Judy Childress

9 Tim Fedewa, Scott Page

10 Amelia Andretti, Andy Rueger

11 Glenn Bobo, Tim Flock, NASCAR Hall of Fame

12 Jabe Thomas, Debra Adamczyk

13 Rich Bickle, Scott Eggleston, Bob Kennedy, Jim Spencer, Linda McReynolds, Kirk Almquist, Maggie Feeney Rossi

14 Steve Letarte, Bill Brooks, Dave Munari, Danielle Del Corio, Scott Lynch

15 Shane Hmiel, John Hubner

16 Josh Walker

17 Mike Shiplett, Craig Ferguson, Kevin Pennell

18 Mike Motil

19 Jody Ridley, Dario Franchitti, Danny Culler

20 Tony Stewart, Dave Despain, Steve Portenga, Mike Stefanik, Eric Norris, AJ Heister, Les Huntley

21 Cotton Owens, Mark Muller, Jeff Meendering, Brandon McReynolds, Rodney Fetters, Nathan McGuire

22 Jay Guy, Joey Knuckles, Janice Almirola

23 Kerry Tharp, Harvey Walters, Wally Dallenbach Jr

24 Joey Logano, Ricky Craven, Chip Ganassi, Lesa France Kennedy, Amy Rice, Brent Sherman, Colt Hammond, Tommy Chong, Jack Smith

25 Bud Moore, Paul Andrews, A.J. Foyt IV, Spenny Clendenen, Ross Kenseth, Kevin Hulstein, Smokey Yunick

26 Stacy Compton, Adam Gravitt, Kenny Trout

27 April Horner, Jeremy Mayfield, Dick Berggren, Van Colley, John Bickford, Carol Einarsson

28 Ray Fox, Butch Stevens, Marvin Panch, Dan E. Donnely, Ron Lemasters Jr., David Joy, Michael Klein

29 Joe Weatherly, Ken Schrader, Bobby Hamilton, Al Unser, Jimmy Means, Todd Berrier, John F. Kennedy, Germán Quiroga, Steve Allen, Kaye Jenkins, Jessica Taylor

30 Clint Bowyer, Erik Jones, Reagan Page, Gale Wilson

31 Jerry 'Dad' Adamczyk, Jack Baldwin, Gayle Barnwell, Pat Calkins, Charlie Lewis, Krista Voda, Faith Anne Yeley

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