March 2009 Nationwide Series Archive
- Kyle Busch debuts NOS sponsorship for 2009: If he wins this weekend in the NASCAR Nationwide Series' O'Reilly 300, [Kyle Busch] will have collected his third-straight series win at Texas Motor Speedway. Presently third in the Nationwide Series standings, Kyle takes to the wheel of the #18 NOS Energy Drink Toyota for the first of a 14-race schedule with NOS atop the hood and adorning the quarter panels of the Joe Gibbs Racing-built machine.(TrueSpeed Communications PR), See an image of the car on the #18 Nationwide Series paint schemes page.(3-31-2009)
- Johnny Davis Motorsports announces Texas sponsors: Danny O'Quinn's #01 team to again carry www.Cash4Gold.Com/Racing primary sponsorship for this weekend's O'Reilly 300 at Texas Motor Speedway. In additioin, Lowery Plumbing of Kerrville, Texas will again support Danny and Johnny this weekend and the team welcomes Bob & Bill Kapitan with Steve Poole representing the "Stew-Garitaville-Campground 4 row 82 Group's Open House" this weekend. JC Stout will drive the www.sponsordavis.com #0 Chevy this weekend.(Hufco Promotion / JDM PR)(3-31-2009)
- Sellers ready for series debut: Peyton Sellers is not exactly a household name in NASCAR…yet. But anyone inside the sport will tell you that they have been watching this young man for years, building experience as a driver and respect as a person. On Saturday, April 4, the 25 year old will step into his #77 SFP Chevy at Texas Motor Speedway in one of NASCAR's top series for the first of ten races this year.(Cardinal Motorsports PR)(3-31-2009)
- Dale Jr. running first Fastenal race of the year: This weekend will mark the first of a 14-race sponsorship package with Fastenal, America's leading fastener distributer. #5-Dale Earnhardt, Jr. will share driving duties of the Fastenal Chevy throughout the year with Ryan Newman (four races) and Scott Wimmer (six races).(JR Motosports PR), see an image of the car on the #5 Nationwide Paint Schemes page.(3-31-2009)
- Hellmans on the #88 at Texas: This weekend will mark the first of three races in which Hellmann's mayonnaise will be the primary sponsor for the JR Motorsports #88 Chevy. The additional events will be the June Nashville race and the October Charlotte race. At Charlotte, Keselowski will run the special "Hellmann's Real Fan of the Year" paint scheme.(JR Motorsports PR)(3-31-2009)
- Congrats: #29-Holiday Inn Racing gasman and mechanic Thomas Costello celebrated the birth of his son Tyler Robert. Tyler was born Saturday evening shortly after 7:30 p.m. at Northeast Medical Center in Concord, N.C.(RCR PR)(3-31-2009)
- Leffler tests at Motor Mile: #38-Jason Leffler and the Great Clips team spent gearing up for the series' upcoming short track races by testing at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, VA on Monday.(Braun Racing PR)(3-31-2009)
- New look for Stott Racing: Andy Ponstein and Corrie Stott Racing will head to Texas with a new paint scheme for their #02 Chevy. The blue and white car you are used to seeing on track will now be red and white.(Corrie Stott Racing PR), See an image on the #02 Nationwide Series paint scheme page.(3-31-2009)
- Brian Scott to run some Nationwide races: Camping World Truck Series driver Brian Scott told Sirius NASCAR Radio's Sirius Speedway Monday that he hopes to run a limited number of Nationwide Series events, beginning at Nashville, for a team to be announced. "I can't much yet because it's not totally signed, sealed and delivered," said Scott. "But I'm pretty confident that it's going to happen."(3-30-2009)
- Raybestos Rookie Notes for Texas:
...Justin Allgaier was the Raybestos Rookie of the Race in the Scotts Turf Builder 300 at Bristol. Allgaier scored a fifth-place finish, his first top-five in eight NASCAR Nationwide Series races and his second consecutive top-10. He claimed Raybestos® Rookie of the Race honors for the first time this season and became the first freshman driver to finish in the top-five since 2005.
...Brendan Gaughan won the pole at Bristol, his first in five Nationwide Series starts. Gaughan's best previous qualifying effort was 11th-place earlier this season at Auto Club Speedway.
...Two Raybestos Rookies led at Bristol: Gaughan and Michael Annett. Gaughan led once for six laps and has led at least one lap in the last two consecutive races. Annett led once for one lap, the first lap he had led in five career Nationwide Series starts.
...At least one Raybestos Rookie has now scored top-10 finishes in three of the first four races this season.
...Allgaier leads Brendan Gaughan by one point (45-44) in the Raybestos Rookie standings entering the O'Reilly 300 at Texas.
...Dario Franchitti was the Raybestos Rookie of the Race in the 2008 O'Reilly 300, scoring an 11th-place finish. Franchitti also led the race once for one lap and was the only first-year driver to lead the race.(Raybestos/Camp & Assoc. PR)(3-30-2009)
- Shepherd gets Beachbody associate sponsorship: Beachbody, the world’s leading in-home fitness and weight loss provider and the creator of the Tony Horton’s 10-Minute Trainer® DVD program, will join Faith Motorsports as an associate sponsor of Morgan Shepherd’s #89 Chevy for NASCAR’s 2009 Nationwide Series campaign. The company has created a special website, www.TenMin.com, for the sponsorship and is now offering all NASCAR fans the ability to try the same program Mr. Shepherd uses, risk free.(Beachbody PR)(3-26-2009)
- Nationwide Series Ratings from Bristol: ABC's live coverage of the NASCAR Nationwide Series Scotts Turfbuilder 300 from Bristol Motor Speedway earned a final national rating of 1.7, down from the 2.0 rating earned for last year's race that also aired on ABC. The race averaged 2,324,048 viewers airing against the highly-rated first round of the NCAA tournament. The Scotts Saturday Night Special, which aired live on ESPN2 from 6-7 p.m. on Saturday from Bristol, earned a final national rating of 0.9.(ESPN PR)(3-26-2009)
- CJM helping bring awareness to autism: CJM Racing and America's Incredible Pizza Company will team up this season with the Autism Society of America to help bring awareness to a disorder that affects one in 150 American children. The complex disability is something America's Incredible Pizza Company CEO Rick Barsness and his wife Cheryl are all too familiar with. "Our grandson was diagnosed with autism very young. We put this ribbon on our car to bring awareness to the struggle that so many families, as well as our own, face with the diagnosis of autism," remarked Cheryl Barsness. "We also wanted to declare loudly that there is hope for these children. Children with autism have hope through prayer, early intervention, biomedical intervention and lots of support. We have hope." The month of April marks Autism Awareness month, the #11 America's Incredible Pizza Company Toyota will proudly display the Autism puzzle piece ribbon on the hood at the upcoming O'Reilly 300 at Texas Motor Speedway. The new relationship will continue throughout the 2009 season as the Autism ribbon will be located on the c-post for the remaining America's Incredible Pizza Company races.(CJM PR)(3-26-2009)
- NOS sponsoring Busch: UPDATE 2: Coca-Cola Co.’s NOS Energy Drink will sponsor Kyle Busch’s car in 14 NASCAR Nationwide Series races, according to NOS and Joe Gibbs Racing. Busch’s first race in the NOS car is scheduled for April 4 at Texas Motor Speedway.(Atlanta Journal Constitution)(3-6-2008)
UPDATE: NOS Energy Drink and Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) jointly announce a 14-race Nationwide Series sponsorship of the #18 NOS Energy Drink Toyota driven by Kyle Busch.(Joe Gibbs Racing PR), see the sponsorship schedule on the 2009 Nationwide Team Chart.(3-6-2009)
UPDATE: See an image of the car on the #18 Nationwide Series Paint Schemes page.(3-26-2009)
- Driver change at ML Motorsports: UPDATE: hearing that ML Motorsports #70 has released Mark Green and that Shelby Howard will take over the driving duties at Texas.(3-25-2009)
UPDATE: Based in Indiana, ML Motorsports has hired an Indiana driver to pilot the #70 Chevy for the rest of the 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series season. ML Motorsports parted ways with driver Mark Green Monday and will put 23-year-old Greenwood, Indiana driver Shelby Howard behind the wheel of Mary Louise Miller’s Biomet/Foretravel Motorcoach ride beginning April 4th at Texas Motor Speedway.(ML Motorsports PR)(3-26-2009)
- MC2 back on the #05 at Texas: MC2 Energy Drink and Beverage Plus Inc. announced that it is teaming up with NASCAR Nationwide driver Casey Atwood and veteran team owner Wayne Day for the O'Reilly 300 on April 4th at the Texas Motor Speedway.(MC2 PR)(3-25-2009)
- Gordon Qualifying Time Disallowed: UPDATE 3: Penalties #72-Benny Gordon's qualifying time was disallowed after a post-qualifying fuel sample did not meet specifications. #96-Dennis Setzer is now in the field.(NASCAR PR)(3-21-2009)
UPDATE: Nationwide Series Director Joe Balash said there could be more penalties coming for North South Motorsports’ Benny Gordon after his fuel did not meet NASCAR specifications following his qualifying lap Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway. Gordon’s qualifying time was disallowed and because he did not have one of the guaranteed positions based on top-30 owners points from last year, Gordon did not compete in the race. Would he have been disqualified from the event if he had a guaranteed spot? “We probably would have had deeper discussions about that type of a penalty,” Balash said Sunday. “We didn’t have any of those conversations because they weren’t [guaranteed].” Balash chose his words carefully when talking about what happened and whether it was possible that there were remnants of another fuel from other series that Gordon competes in.(Scene Daily)(3-22-2009)
UPDATE 2: A statement from the team: After qualifying, NASCAR tested [Gordon's] car's fuel as with everyone's fuel. To Gordon's surprise his fuel did not meet NASCAR's specifications. Gordon and crew were baffled by these results because the only fuel used at anytime in this car was the required Sunoco 260GTX. Gordon had bought some 260GTX and used it to do his shake down of the car the day before. Once at the track Gordon received the free Sunoco supplied 260GTX and filled his car to start the practice day. After his practice runs and before qualifying, he topped off his car with the Sunoco 260GTX he had purchased. Inadvertently, this fuel must have been different. The fuel is being tested by independent labs on Monday and Gordon will have this matter resolved as he and his crew has worked around the clock to provide a competitive race team without any errors. Gordon stated "There has been an error that did not allow our fuel to pass technical inspection. I'm disappointed for my team, sponsors, family and friends who put forth such an effort to only see it be cut short. We will be working hard to get the answers to what happened". Gordon will start working this week on his Nashville Nationwide car and is excited about his future in the Nationwide series.(Benny Gordon PR)(3-23-2009)
UDPATE 3: NASCAR announced that the crew chief, owner and driver for the #72 NASCAR Nationwide Series team have been fined and penalized due to rule violations discovered during this past weekend’s event at Bristol Motor Speedway. In addition to having the qualifying time disallowed for the #72 Ford driven by Benny Gordon, crew chief Andy Punch has been fined $10,000 and suspended for the next four NASCAR events from April 4-29, 2009 and placed on probation until Dec. 31, 2009, for violating Section 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4-I (any determination by NASCAR officials that the race equipment used in the event does not conform to NASCAR rules), 20A-15 (NASCAR reserves the right to have all cars use the same brand of fuel in a given event) and 20A-15.2C (the gasoline must not be blended with alcohols, ethers, or other oxygenates and it must not be blended with aniline or its derivatives, nitro compounds or other nitrogen-containing compounds) of the 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series rule book. Team owner Frank Varischetti was penalized with the loss of 50 NASCAR Nationwide Series championship owner points while Gordon also was docked 50 NASCAR Nationwide Series championship driver points. The infractions were discovered on March 20 during opening-day inspection.(NASCAR PR)(3-25-2009)
- Driver changes coming at Rick Ware Racing?: UPDATE: Rick Ware Racing will be conducting a press conference on Tuesday March 24 to announce a new driver lineup with Rick Ware Racing's Nationwide Series entries of the #31 and #41.(Rick Ware Racing PR), the team had previously announced that Travis Kittleson and Tim Brown would be in the #31 when Stanton Barrett was driving in the IRL. No announcements have been made about the #41, but Cope was expected to be in the car fulltime.(3-19-2009)
UPDATE: Rick Ware Racing announces an addition to their Nationwide Series program, drivers Kerry Earnhardt and Jeffrey Earnhardt.
-Kerry Earnhardt will drive in several races in the NASCAR Nationwide Series for Rick Ware Racing
-Jeffrey Earnhardt will race in 7 races in the NASCAR Nationwide Series for Rick Ware Racing
-Jeffrey Earnhardt will save his Rookie status for the 2010 season in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, as he will compete for Raybestos Rookie of the Year.
-Kerry and Jeffrey Earnhardt will be paired with Championship Crew Chief, Paul Andrews and Clyde McCloud
-Kerry will make his first of several RWR starts at Texas Motor Speedway on April 4th, 2009
-Jeffrey will make his RWR debut at Dover International Speedway on May 30th, 2009
-Jeffrey's schedule will be a progressive enhancement, consisting of races from 1-mile to 2-mile tracks to prepare him for the 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series season.
-Jeffrey Earnhardt will compete in the Montreal Nationwide Series event, marking the first Earnhardt to race in Canada in one of the Top three NASCAR Series'.
-Kerry and Jeffrey will join Dale Earnhardt Jr as entries in the NASCAR Nationwide Series event at Atlanta, marking the second time that three Earnhardts' participated in the same event.(Rick Ware Racing PR)(3-24-2009)
- 5-Hour Energy expands sponsorship of RWI: Officials of Living Essentials, LLC and Rusty Wallace Racing, LLC announced that LE, through its 5-Hour Energy Extra Strength brand, will expand its 2009 sponsorship program with the team. In addition to LE's ongoing sponsorship of RWR's #66 and driver Steve Wallace, 5-Hour Energy Extra Strength will serve as primary sponsor of RWR's #62 Chevy, driven by fourth-ranked Brendan Gaughan, in 13 2009 Nationwide Series races. Additionally, 5-Hour Energy will have an increased associate sponsor presence on Wallace's #66 for those 13 events. The overall 2009 5-Hour Energy racing program debuted with Steve Wallace's top-ten finish in last weekend's event at Bristol Motor Speedway. The expanded program, featuring the #62 5-Hour Energy Extra Strength Chevy, will make its debut in the April 25th event at Talladega Superspeedway and will conclude with the November 21st season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.(RWR PR)(3-24-2009)
- Townley to compete is ASA at SGMP: John Wes Townley of Watkinsville, Ga. will return to his racing roots in the ASA Late Model Series this weekend when he competes in the South Georgia 100 at the half-mile South Georgia Motorsports Park in Adel, Ga. on Saturday night March 28. The 19-year-old Townley, a Raybestos rookie of the year contender in the Nationwide Series, posted a pair of career bests last weekend in NASCAR’s junior circuit when he qualified 12th and finished 16th in the Scotts Turf Builder 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday.(ASA PR)(3-23-2009)
- Racing Resources Says...
...Kevin Harvick won the Scotts Turf Builder 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway, posting his first victory for Kevin Harvick Inc. He became the fourth different race winner in four races this season.
...Harvick scored his 33rd Nationwide victory in his 218th race; his last win came at Texas in November 2007. Harvick went 27 races since his last series victory. Thirty-two of Harvick's 33 Nationwide wins came with Richard Childress Racing.
...Harvick climbed from seventh to second in the points standings, 114 behind leader Carl Edwards. Harvick remains second on NASCAR's Nationwide all-time wins list behind Mark Martin, who has 48 series victories.
...Harvick scored his fifth Nationwide Bristol victory in his 18 races. He last won at Bristol in March 2005.
...Harvick led twice for 46 laps, including the final 45.
...Carl Edwards (who finished second) has posted 13 consecutive top-5 finishes.
...Justin Allgaier (fifth) posted his career-best finish. He was the highest-finishing rookie contender.
...Chevy scored its 29th victory in 54 Bristol races.
...The race featured 10 cautions for 62 laps.
...The 16 lead changes were a record for Bristol.
...Pole winner Brendan Gaughan finished 21st in his first Nationwide race at Bristol.
...Kyle Busch, who led three times for 156 laps, had a tire violation on Lap 254 and restarted as the last car on the lead lap. He recovered to finish sixth.
...Scott Speed (eighth) scored a top-10 finish in his second Nationwide race.
...The top 10 consisted of two Fords, four Toyotas, three Chevrolets and one Dodge.(ESPN.com)(3-23-2009)
- What's up with Landon Cassill? Landon Cassill and High Performance Motorsports have announced that they have teamed up to race the "Short Track Nationals Georgia 100" at South Georgia Motorsports Park. Cassill will compete in the #61 LS3 powered Chevy Impala SS. Cassill has had some success at SGMP, in 2007 Cassill won the ASA Late Model South race to become the first ever to win a race in all division of ASA Late Model competition (ASA Late Model North, Challenge and South).(ASA PR)(3-23-2009)
- Changes at SK Motorsports? UPDATE 2: hearing that several employees, including crew chief Jon Wolfe, and have left the #07-SK Motorsports team. Lack of sponsorship was the reason cited. [see note below].(3-17-2009)
UPDATE 1: Have confirmed that Wolfe and a number of other crew members are no longer with the team.(3-18-2009)
UPDATE 2: Roger Johnson is now serving as crew chief for the #07 team.(3-22-2009)
- Biffle out of Nationwide race because of injured ribs: Greg Biffle has pulled out of the Nationwide Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway because he bruised his ribs. Biffle says he was hurt while boating with friends. He says he jumped from the dock to the boat, and his foot slipped on a wet spot on the dock. He says he banged his right side on the side of the boat. Matt Kenseth will replace his Roush Fenway Racing teammate in Saturday's race. He is still on schedule to drive in Sunday's Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol. (Associated Press)(3-20-2009)
MORE: Greg Biffle is walking around the Bristol Motor Speedway garage with sore ribs. The #16-3M Ford Fusion driver slipped and struck his right side on the edge of the boat while helping friends dock the boat Tuesday evening near his home north of Charlotte. "It was one of those freak, stupid accidents were you take a fall and you have no way to stop it or brace it or grab because I was over top of water. I didn't do anything out of the ordinary, I mean; everybody's jumped onto a boat before, so, just lost my footing." Biffle tested his ribs Thursday at the shop when he climbed into his Martinsville car and says he feels better in that seat than sitting on anything. Biffle added; "Its hard foam and it's molded so it doesn't create any pressure points." As for how he feels, Biffle says, "I can not believe how much better I feel in three days. I was really hurting Tuesday night and Wednesday I felt a fair amount better and then yesterday (Thursday) I was up doing all kinds of stuff so I feel pretty good now." As a precaution Biffle will not compete in Saturday's Nationwide Series race as Matt Kenseth will drive the #16 CitiFinancial Ford.(PRNs Garage Pass)(3-20-2009)Comment here
- Cajun Industries on the #26 at Bristol: Cajun Industries will sponsor Brian Keselowski and the #26 Dodge at the famed Bristol track this coming weekend March 21st. Brian and the K-Auto team has worked with Cajun earlier this year at Daytona and share a common bond when it comes to hard work and dedication.(Keselowski PR)(3-20-2009)
- ConstructionJobs.com to Sponsor David Green & SK Motorsports in Bristol: Major construction is needed for many race cars following a 300-lap Nationwide Series race at the famed Bristol Motor Speedway. David Green and his SK Motorsports team are hoping that's not what they will encounter during this weekend's event, however, should they need help they will have the perfect partner on board to assist. ConstructionJobs.com has signed a one-race deal to sponsor Green and the #07 SK Motorsports Toyota for Saturday's Scotts Turf Builder 300.(SK Motorsports PR)(3-19-2009)
- Degree V12 to sponsor Atlanta race and JR Motosports: Degree Men continues its tradition of working with some of the nation's best athletes as it enters into the brand's first-ever NASCAR team sponsorship. To launch its new Degree V12, a Special Edition variant of its popular Absolute Protection line, Degree has turned to NASCAR for a partnership that includes title sponsorship of the Degree V12 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway over Labor Day weekend, plus a new relationship with JR Motorsports and top-performing NASCAR drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Brad Keselowski. Earnhardt Jr. will pilot the #5 Degree V12 Chevy during the Degree V12 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Sept. 5, 2009. Earnhardt's JR Motorsports teammate, Brad Keselowski, will man the #88 Degree V12 Chevy in four Nationwide Series races during the 2009 season, including: Chicagoland Speedway on July 10 , Gateway International Raceway on July 18, Bristol Motor Speedway on Aug. 21 and Texas Motor Speedway on Nov. 7.(JR Motorsports PR)(3-20-2009)
- Halo Wars on the #20 at Bristol: This weekend, Joey Logano and the #20 GameStop Toyota will carry the colors of the recently-released Halo Wars video game that is available exclusively for the Xbox 360.(MCG / Joe Gibbs Racing PR), see an image of the car on the #20 Nationwide Series paint scheme page.(3-20-2009)
- Bayne making Nationwide debut: Trevor Bayne, who turned 18 Feb. 19, 2009, will make his NASCAR Nationwide Series debut this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway. Bayne will drive the #52 Taco Bell entry for Jimmy Mean's Racing.(Everest-Marketing PR)(3-19-2009)
- flipNbags on the #73 at Bristol: IMAGE Primary sponsor on the #73 Derrike Cope Racing Nationwide car at Bristol will be flipNbags. flipNbags is a line of totes and coolers designed for recreational use along with business products such as PDA and notebook cases.(SOSi Marketing PR)(3-16-2009)
IMAGE: see a graphic of the car on the #73 Nationwide Series paint scheme page.(3-19-2009)
- Montreal race tickets on sale Friday: Stock-Car Montreal announced that tickets for the NASCAR Nationwide Series NAPA Auto Parts 200 Presented by Dodge will go on sale Friday, March 20. The Nationwide Series returns to Montreal for the third consecutive year at Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve on Saturday August 29 and Sunday August 30, 2009. The Montreal race will be held on an off weekend from the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Fans may purchase tickets by dialing (514) 397-0007 or ordering their tickets online at www.circuitgillesvilleneuve.ca.(3-19-2009)
- Helluva Good! renews Dover race sponsorship: Heluva Good!, a leading producer of real sour cream dips and naturally aged cheese, announced their continued sponsorship of the "Heluva Good! 200" Nationwide Series race at Dover through 2010. The "Heluva Good! 200" is part of the spring race weekend at the Monster Mile, and will be held on May 30, 2009 this year.(Dover Speedway PR)(3-19-2009)
- JR Motorsports headed to Cup? On the surface the announcement that Dale Earnhardt Jr., Ryan Newman, Tony Stewart, Mark Martin and Scott Wimmer would share a 21-race schedule for JR Mortorsports in the Nationwide Series was all about luring sponsorship. Not really. JR Motorsports announced on January 16th that Fastenal would be the primary sponsor for the No. 5 for 14 races before the driver lineup was nailed down. But having five drivers with 91 career Nationwide victories and a pair of titles doesn't hurt during tough economic times when sponsorship, particularly outside of NASCAR's primary series, is hard to find. It's also good for the series, which needs top Sprint Cup drivers to attract fans. Success in the series also could fast-forward JR Motorsports transitioning to a Cup team. Earnhardt said last season that with costs the way they are it makes sense to consider such a move if he can find the right sponsor and drive combination. He's said little about it since, and for now he's focused on the Nationwide program. "This #5 team carries a strong tradition and a lot of expectations and we are fortunate to attract such quality talent to help carry on that tradition," Earnhardt said. "We had a similar setup with this team last year and we were able to go to Victory Lane twice. Obviously with this driver lineup there's no reason we can't exceed last year's win total."(ESPN.com)(3-19-2009) Comment here
- StopRepairBills.com to Sponsor Key Motorsports: StopRepairBills.com has officially announced their sponsorship debut in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. The company is launching a multi-race deal with Key Motorsports and the #40 Chevy driven by Scott Wimmer. The sponsorship deal is the first for StopRepairBills.com in the NASCAR Nationwide series with StopRepairBills.com brand as the primary sponsor for an initial 12 races. StopRepairBills.com and Key Motorsports will debut their new partnership in this Saturday's Nationwide Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway.(Key Motorsports PR)(3-18-2009)
- Menard making first start of 2009: This weekend, Paul Menard will make his first start in the Nationwide Series in 2009, running the #98 Richmond / Menards Ford.(Yates Racing PR)(3-18-2009)
- St. Clair Foods to sponsor SK Motorsports in Bristol UPDATE 2: deal is off: David Green's #07-SK Motorsports NASCAR Nationwide Series team will be sponsored by St. Clair Foods in next weekend's Scotts Turfbuilder 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway. Officials from St. Clair Foods also said the company has signed a "multirace sponsorship" with more races to be announced later.(Scene Daily), see an image of the car on the #07 Paint Schemes page.(3-13-2009)
UPDATE: Later that night, Green will also sport the St. Clair logo in the Saturday Night Special at Bristol. Green will be joined by other NASCAR icons driving late-model cars for charity in the 50-lap race. St. Clair Foods began in Memphis, Tennessee in 1976 making four signature salad dressings. Three decades later the company is one of the premier deli salad and frozen side dish manufacturers in the country.(St. Clair Racing PR)(3-14-2009)
UPDATE 2: A two-race sponsorship deal intended for SK Motorsports’ Nationwide Series entry with driver David Green and St. Clair Foods was withdrawn today. “I regret that the two parties could not reach an agreement,” said David Goodman of Mountain Empire Sports Marketing Group, who was involved in brokering the agreement. “A failure to finalize exclusivity rights for St. Clair Foods by my company was central to the failed agreement.” St. Clair withdrew from the agreement because of the inability to reach an exclusive sponsorship agreement with SK Motorsports for this weekend's Scotts Turf Builder 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway and a series race scheduled for later this year in Memphis.(Scene Daily)(3-18-2009)
- JD Motorsports Names Sponsors: Johnny Davis Motorsports announces a multi race sponsorship from Cash4Gold, America's #1 Gold Buyer and Refiner. A no-obligation request for a "Free Refiners Kit" through the team's link or the toll free 1-800-527-1801 number will result in direct support of the team.
In addtion, #01 driver Danny O'Quinn is receiving associate sponsorship from Food City and its 93 locations in Kentucky, Virginia and Tennessee.(Johnny Davis Motorsports/Hufco Pro-Motion PR)(3-18-209)
- Richardson broke collar bone at Vegas: While #23-Robert Richardson spent his time-off recuperating from a broken collarbone he sustained in his Las Vegas wreck, he is now getting antsy to get racing this weekend at one of the most intense and noisy tracks the series competes on.(R3 Motorsports PR)(3-17-2009)
- Hamlin in the #81 at Bristol & Texas: MacDonald Motorsports announced that Kevin Hamlin will drive the #81 D.H. Griffin machine in the Nationwide Series this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway and in two weeks at Texas Motor Speedway. D.H. Griffin, who was the primary sponsor for the Camping World 300 at Daytona International Speedway, will sponsor the #81 machine this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway.(MacDonald Motorsports PR)(3-17-2009)
- Cajun Industries on the #91 at Bristol: MSRP Motorsports and Driver Terry Cook welcome back Cajun Industries as the sponsor for the Scotts Turf Builder 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway. Cajun Industries, who sponsored Cook earlier this season in his Camping World Truck Series effort in the season's kick off at Daytona International Speedway and his attempt at the same track to make the Nationwide Race with MSRP Motorsports, will adorn the #91 Chevy.(MSRP PR)(3-17-2009)
- Slednecks helping Brian Keselowski: Slednecks is rallying fans to support snowmobiler and NASCAR owner/driver Brian Keselowski. Brian builds, wrenches, and drives his own #26 car on the Nationwide Series. Slednecks is offering fans a free Slednecks Talladega hat. Go to www.shop.slednecks.com and select Hats, then choose your Talladega color, then size, and hit "buy now". At the "Basket", enter "BrianK" as the promotion code and submit. If you would like to continue shopping for more great Slednecks goods, Slednecks will donate 25% of the merchandise total to Brian to help rebuild his race car.(Driven Agency/Keselowski PR)(3-17-2009)
- JR Motorsports announces additional plans for #5: JR Motorsports today announced additional plans for its #5 Nationwide Series team for 2009, with veteran drivers Ryan Newman, Scott Wimmer and Tony Stewart joining team owner Dale Earnhardt Jr. and all-time series wins leader Mark Martin for the 21-race schedule. Wimmer will compete in six events in the #5 Chevy and Newman in four, with America's largest fastener distributor, Fastenal, as the primary sponsor. Stewart's one race for JR Motorsports will be in a Delphi-sponsored Chevy at Lowe's Motor Speedway on Oct. 16. The driver additions leave only two races on the No. 5 team's 21-race schedule unfulfilled - the road-course events at Watkins Glen on Aug. 8 and Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on Aug. 30. Driver plans for those races will be announced at a later date.(JR Motorsports PR)(3-16-2009)
- Benny Gordon attempting series debut at Bristol: USAR Pro Cup driver Benny Gordon will attempt to make his Nationwide Series debut this weekend in Bristol. The team is owned by Benny Gordon and Frank Varischetti and will operate out of Dubois, PA. The team will continue to run some of the USAR Pro Cup races. They plan to run a limited schedule of 10 races at minimum, including Bristol, Richmond, Iowa, Dover, Texas, New Hampshirem, and possibly Nashville. They will use engines from Roush-Yates. Primary sponsors will be Verischetti & Sons and Samuel & Sons Metals.(Benny Gordon PR)(3-16-2009)
- Nationwide Series from Bristol on ABC : The NASCAR Nationwide Series makes its first appearance of the 2009 season on ABC this weekend when ESPN on ABC has live, high definition coverage of the Scotts Turf Builder 300 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway on Saturday, March 21, beginning at 2 p.m. ET with NASCAR Countdown. ESPN2 is the home of the NASCAR Nationwide Series all season, with selected races on ESPN and ABC. The race re-airs Sunday, March 22, at 8 a.m. on ESPN Classic. Dr. Jerry Punch will be the lap-by-lap announcer, joined in the booth for analysis by Dale Jarrett and Andy Petree. Dave Burns, Shannon Spake and Vince Welch will report from the pits, while Tim Brewer will be in the ESPN Craftsman Tech Garage. Allen Bestwick will host NASCAR Countdown with analysis by Rusty Wallace and Brad Daugherty in the ESPN pit studio.(ESPN PR)(3-16-2009)
- Food City on the #24 at Bristol: The #24 Hefty Odor Block Ford will be sporting the Food City logo on the lower rear quarter-panels and C-post in Saturday's event at Bristol.(McClure PR)(3-16-2009)
- Armour Meats on the #33 at Bristol: This week the #33 KHI Chevy will sport the colors of Armour canned meats, a brand of Pinnacle Foods Group, LLC. This will be the only race for Armour canned meats, but Vlasic pickles and Hungry-Man frozen dinners and entrees, also brands of Pinnacle Foods Group, LLC, will run on the #33 Chevy later in the 2009 season at O'Reilly Raceway Park and Homestead-Miami Speedway. (KHI PR)(3-16-2009)
- Raybestos Rookie Notes for Bristol:
...Michael McDowell was the Raybestos Rookie of the Race in the Sam's Town 300 at Las Vegas. McDowell scored a sixth-place finish, his first top-10 and best effort in eight Nationwide Series starts. He has taken Raybestos Rookie of the Race honors twice in the first three races this season.
...At least one Raybestos Rookie has now scored top-10 finishes in two of the first three races this season.
...Four Raybestos Rookies finished inside the top-10 in the Sam's Town 300: McDowell, Brendan Gaughan (seventh), Justin Allgaier (eighth) and Scott Lagasse Jr. (ninth), a record for a Nationwide Series race at Las Vegas race.
...Gaughan, Allgaier and Lagasse Jr. each scored their best Nationwide Series career finish at Las Vegas.
...At least one Raybestos Rookie has scored top-10 finishes in two of the first three Nationwide Series races this season.
...Brendan Gaughan leads Michael McDowell by five points (37-32) in the Raybestos Rookie standings entering the Scott's Turf Builder 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway.
...Two Raybestos Rookies are in the top-10 in the Nationwide Series standings: Gaughan (fourth) and McDowell (10th).
...Dario Franchitti was the Raybestos Rookie of the Race in the 2008 Scott's Turf Builder 300, scoring a 22nd-place finish.
(Raybestos/Camp & Assoc. PR)(3-16-2009)
- Stott Classic Racing to attempt Bristol: Coming off the team's best finish ever last week at Las Vegas [23rd], Stott Classic Racing and driver Andy Ponstein will head to Bristol to compete in the Scotts Turf Builder 300.(3-13-2009)
- #23 crew member suspended: UPDATE: John Boyd, a licensed crew member for the #23 team in the Nationwide Series, has been indefinitely suspended from NASCAR for violating the sanctioning body's substance abuse policy. On March 9, Boyd was found to have violated Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 7-5 (violation of the NASCAR substance abuse policy) of the 2009 NASCAR rule book.(NASCAR PR)(3-11-2009)
UPDATE: Statement from the team: On March 9, NASCAR handed down an indefinite suspension to a crew member of R3 Motorsports for violating the sanctioning body's substance abuse policy. The crew member of the #23 NASCAR Nationwide Series team, John Boyd, was a contract employee serving as a tire carrier on race day; only. He was not a day-to-day employee of the team. "We strongly support NASCAR and their continued effort regarding their substance abuse policy," said Rob Fuller, of R3 Motorsports. "NASCAR respectfully contacted us in advance to inform us of the test results for Mr. Boyd. We thank them for their professionalism in this matter. Mr. Boyd must now deal directly with NASCAR regarding this issue. R3 Motorsports is fairly new to NASCAR competition and we want them, our sponsors, crew members and fans to know we stand by and support NASCAR's substance abuse initiatives. We will continue to work with them in the future in regards to this; and all matters."(R3 Motorsports PR)(3-12-2009)
- Shepherd test at Motor Mile: Morgan Shepherd and his Faith Motorsports crew spent March 9 running the half-mile oval at Motor Mile Speedway in an effort to fine-tune its Bristol setup for next weekend.(Faith Motorsports)(3-11-2009)
- Venturini named crew chief for Davis: Marc Davis Motorsports names Billy Venturini crew chief for the Howard University Radio WHUR 96.3 Toyota. Nationwide driver Marc Davis and Billy Venturini have a continuing relationship working together in ARCA racing. Davis' #36 Toyota is entered in the Nationwide Bristol March 21 race and will also compete at Richmond, Charlotte and Dover.(Marc Davis PR)(3-10-2009)
- RAB to appeal Daytona penalties: UPDATE: The National Stock Car Racing Commission accepted a request for an appeal pertaining to the penalty levied against Jay Robinson, car owner of the #09 Ford at Daytona. A date for the hearing has yet to be set, however it is expected to take place sometime next week. "I'm grateful to NASCAR for having a process in place for this type of instance. They've been very helpful and we look forward to the opportunity to present the facts of our particular case to the Commission so that the penalty may be reconsidered." - Robby Benton, General Manager(RAB Racing PR), for earlier information on the penalty, see the 2009 Nationwide Series penalties page.(2-25-2009)
UPDATE: On March 9, 2009, the National Stock Car Racing Commission heard and considered the appeal of RAB Racing regarding the #09 NASCAR Nationwide Series car. The appeal concerned three penalties issued by NASCAR stemming from opening day inspection on February 10, 2009 for the NASCAR Nationwide Series event at Daytona International Speedway. The Appellants argued that the modifications to the roll cage did not violate NASCAR rules in that the tubing was originally round. The Appellants argued that the modifications did not represent an intentional effort on their part to circumvent the rules, rather that the chassis had been purchased from a third party and had been modified at some time in the past to allow for bodywork clearance. They further pointed out that no effort had been made on their part to conceal the modifications during the inspection process. They also argued that the penalty was excessive in light of these circumstances. The Commission found the Appellants' explanation of the sequence of events regarding the modifications to the roll bar to be both plausible and believable. Ultimately, however, the team presenting the car for inspection is responsible for that car's adherence to the rules. Since the modifications may have affected the integrity of the roll cage, an excessive penalty was warranted in this case. Therefore, it is the unanimous decision of the National Stock Car Racing Commission to uphold the original penalties assessed by NASCAR.(NASCAR PR)(3-9-2009)
- Sad News: Bill Herzog: On Friday, friends and family mourned the passing of Bill Herzog, who died at home in Platte City at the age of 88. Mr. Herzog survived the Great Depression, losing both his parents before he graduated from high school. During World War II, he designed aircraft. He and his wife had three children; sons Stan Herzog and Randy Herzog now serve as executives. Herzog Contracting is recognized as one of the nation’s premier transportation companies, with railroad and highway divisions. It has offices around the country, including corporate headquarters on Riverside Road in St. Joseph, and 1,200 employees.(St. Joseph News-Press), Herzog was the owner of the #92-Herzog-Jackson Motorsports Nationwide Series team, which operated from 2000-2003 with drivers Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Green, and Todd Bodine.(3-9-2009)
- What's up with Chase Miller? Chase Miller was roaming around the garage [in Atlanta] knocking on the doors of owners and was frustrated he was without a ride. Miller [says] he is now a free agent since Verizon and other sponsors departed the Gillett Evernham Motorsports (now RPM) #9 Nationwide team, forcing its closure. Miller ran 14 races for the team in 2008, with a best finish of 6th at Memphis in October.(The Frontstretch)(3-7-2009)
- Congrats to Dennis O'Connor: Dennis and Aimee O'Connor gave birth to a 7.3 lbs healthy baby boy at 1:59 am Friday March 6th. Dennis is now a crew member at Rusty Wallace Racing on the #66 Nationwide car. Baby and family are doing fine.(3-6-2009)
- Nationwide Insurance to Sponsor Driver in NASCAR's Drive for Diversity Initiative: Nationwide Mutual Insurance, in partnership with local Nationwide Insurance agent Carlo White announced this week that it will sponsor NASCAR Whelen All-American Series driver, Michael Cherry. The promising 19-year old driver has been chosen to represent Nationwide Insurance in conjunction with NASCAR's "Drive for Diversity" initiative. Cherry, from Valrico, Florida, will race for Addis Motorsports at Greenville-Pickens (S.C.) Speedway. The 2009 season will mark Cherry's second year as a member of the Drive for Diversity initiative. He was rookie of the year in 2008 at Motor Mile Speedway in the Late Model division and finished fourth in the point standings.(Nationwide PR)(3-6-2009)
- Meijer extends Kentucky race sponsorship: Kentucky Speedway announces Meijer has extended its sponsorships of the NASCAR Nationwide and IndyCar Series 300-mile events staged at the motorsports facility. The NASCAR Nationwide Series “Meijer 300 Presented by Ritz” will be held June 13.(Kentucky Speedway PR)(3-5-2009)
- Federated Auto Parts sponsorsing Key at Nashville in June: Federated Auto Parts has officially announced their partnership with Key Motorsports in the Nationwide Series. The company, which appeared on the #40 Federated Auto Parts Chevy driven by Scott Wimmer in Las Vegas this past weekend, will also serve as the team's primary sponsor for the Federated Auto Parts 300 at Nashville Superspeedway in June.(Key Motorsports PR)(3-4-2009)
- Martin to run Lipton scheme: #5-Mark Martin is scheduled to run a Lipton paint scheme in the Lipton Tea 250 at Richmond on May 1, 2009. See an image of the scheme on the #5 Nationwide Schemes Page.(3-4-2009)
- ESPN2's Nationwide Series Ratings for Las Vegas Even with 2008: ESPN2 earned a 2.1 household coverage rating for its live telecast of the NASCAR Nationwide Series event at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the same rating earned last year when the event also was telecast on ESPN2. The telecast averaged 2,832,506 viewers. The race was the highest-rated sporting event on cable television for the weekend and the most-viewed NASCAR Nationwide Series race on cable ever from Las Vegas Motor Speedway.(ESPN PR)(3-3-2009)
- Wimmer back in the #40: Scott Wimmer will return to the driver's seat of the #40 Key Motorsports Chevy at Bristol. He was initially signed to drive the first 3 races of the season.(Key Motorsports PR)(3-3-2009)
- Federated Auto Parts renews Nashville race sponsorship: For the 14th-consecutive year, Federated Auto Parts will sponsor the Federated Auto Parts 300 Nationwide Series race. The 2009 race will be held June 6 at the Nashville Superspeedway in Lebanon, Tenn. (Federated PR)(3-3-2009)
- Key Motorsports and Tommy Morgan part ways: Owner Curtis Key has announced that #40-Key Motorsports and Nationwide Series crew chief Tommy Morgan will part ways, effective immediately. The decision for Morgan's departure from the team was mutual. The team's full-time Nationwide effort will not stall, despite Tommy Morgan's departure. Key Motorsports' NASCAR Camping World Truck Series crew chief Gary Showalter, who led the Nationwide Series effort in Las Vegas last weekend, will continue to serve as interim crew chief while the team searches for a replacement.(Key Motorsports PR)(3-3-2009)
- ISC makes 3 year deal for Nationwide in Canada: Organizers for the NASCAR Nationwide series race signed a three-year deal Monday to keep the event at Gilles Villeneuve Circuit. This year's NAPA Auto Parts 200 will be held Aug. 29-30 -- a Saturday and Sunday. In its first two years, the Montreal event was held on Friday and Saturday, on the same weekend as the NASCAR Sprint Cup series was competing in another city. The fate of the Nationwide series event was up in the air after the city lost its popular Formula One race in October and promoter Normand Legault announced he was pulling out of the business. But Daytona, Fla.- based International Speedway Corporation, which previously owned 50 percent of the event, bought out Legault's half so the stock car race could continue, said Dumontier. It's one of the best-attended races on the Nationwide schedule.(Associated Press / ESPN.com)(3-2-2009)
- Racing Resources Says...
...Greg Biffle won the Sam's Town 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. It was his 19th Nationwide Series win in his 223rd race; his last victory came at the Auto Club Speedway in February 2006, a span of 76 races.
...Biffle ranks 18th on the all-time wins list.
...Biffle scored his first Nationwide Las Vegas victory in his eighth race there. He also has a win at Las Vegas in the Camping World Truck Series (1999).
...Biffle rebounded from a "too fast on pit road penalty" on Lap 30 and from going a lap down after running out of fuel at Lap 148. He became the ninth different Las Vegas race winner.
...Roush Fenway Racing posted its fifth Nationwide victory and 14th NASCAR victory at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
...Ford scored its fifth Las Vegas win.
...Eighteen drivers failed to finish the race -- a track record.
...Kyle Busch, who was leading the points coming in, finished 39th. Busch is now fifth in points, 124 points behind Carl Edwards.
...Nineteen drivers were involved in on-track incidents, including Mike Bliss, Denny Hamlin, Jeff Burton, Kevin Harvik, Brad Keselowski, Carl Edwards, David Ragan and pole-winner Scott Speed.
...The race featured 12 cautions for 60 laps and two red flags for 20.49 minutes. The 60 caution laps were a track record.
...The Vegas race featured a green-white-checker finish for the third time -- it was extended from 200 laps to 209.
...Pole-winner Speed finished 40th after being involved in an accident that brought out the race's third caution.
...Scott Lagasse Jr., who finished ninth, scored his first career top-10 finish.
...Michael McDowell, who finished sixth, was the highest-finishing rookie.
...Four of the drivers who finished in the top 10 were Rookie of the Year contenders.
...The top 10 consisted of two Fords, four Toyotas, three Chevys and a Dodge.(ESPN.com)(3-2-2009)