August 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup News Archive

AUGUST 2012 NASCAR SPRINT CUP NEWS ARCHIVE

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    News from August 31, 2012

  • Stewart wins pole at Atlanta: #14-Tony Stewart won the Coors Light pole for the AdvoCare 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway with a speed of 186.121mph for his 1st pole of 2012, 1st at AMS and 14th career pole.
    #16-Biffle will start 2nd followed by #18-Busch, #17-Kenseth, #24-Gordon, #55-Martin, #11-Hamlin, #48-Johnson, #20-Logano and #9-Ambrose.
    #10-Danica Patrick qualified 23rd, her best starting spot in her 5th start. #88-Earnhardt Jr. will start 35th.
    The go-or-go homers who made the race (8): #30-Stremme, #21-Bayne, #49-Leffler, #95-Speed, #87-Nemechek, #91-Sorenson, #23-Riggs and #37-Yeley.
    The go-or-go homers who failed to qualify for the race (4): #98-McDowell, #33-Leicht, #26-Wise and #19-Bliss.
    See the Starting Lineup, Qualifying results, pole progression, go-or-go homers. qualifying order on the Atlanta Qualifying Page.(8-31-2012)

  • Qualifying Fast Facts - Atlanta:
    #14-Tony Stewart won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 53rd Annual ADVOCARE 500 with a lap of 29.787 seconds, 186.121 mph.
    This is his 14th pole in 489 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his first pole and ninth top-10 start in 2012.
    This is his first pole in 26 races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    #16-Greg Biffle (second) posted his 16th top-10 start of 2012 and his seventh in 18 races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    #18-Kyle Busch (third) posted his 10th top-10 start at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It is his 14th in 25 races this season.
    #26-Josh Wise (45th) was the fastest qualifying rookie [but failed to make the race].(NASCAR Statistics)(8-31-2012)

  • Coverage of Qualifying for the AdvoCare 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is scheduled for Friday, August 31, 2012 at 6:10pm/et.
    Television (TV): SPEED, 6:00pm/et
    Radio: live online at goprn.com
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: 1:00am/et

  • Qualifying Order for the AdvoCare 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is posted. 47 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers scheduled to go out is #19-Bliss, slowest in practice.
    The final driver scheduled to go out is #56-Truex Jr., who was fastest in first practice.
    Qualifying order is set by the first practice session, with slowest driver going out by speed and the fastest going out last. The non-top 35 drivers are now mixed in with the top-35 in owners points, slowest to fastest.
    See the full qualifying order on the Atlanta Qualifying Page.(8-31-2012)

  • Friday practice for the AdvoCare 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is over, after 90 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
    #56-Truex Jr. 185.220
    #18-Busch 184.831
    #14-Stewart 184.253
    #2-Keselowski 183.631
    #5-Kahne 183.613
    slowest: #19-Bliss 175.944 & #83-Cassill 176.269
    notes: this practice will set the order for qualifying, fastest goes out last, slowest goes out first. Qualifying is scheduled for 6:10pm/et Friday night, to be aired on SPEED and can be heard live via goprn.com.
    See speeds, best top-10 average and laps run on the Atlanta practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-31-2012)

  • Go-or-Go Homers practice at Atlanta: how fast/slow were the drivers who are not in the top-35 of owners points and must qualify by speed to make the Sprint Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, where they practiced in the first practice:
    the eight drivers who would make the race if things stayed the same:
    #21-Bayne, 21st fastest overall
    #98-McDowell, 24th
    #30-Stremme, 25th
    #37-Yeley, 33th
    #95-Speed, 34th
    #91-Sorenson, 36th
    #23-Riggs, 37th
    #33-Leicht, 38th
    the four drivers who would miss the race if things stayed the same:
    #49-Leffler, 39th
    #87-Nemechek, 40th
    #26-Wise, 41st
    #19-Bliss, 47th/last
    (8-31-2012)

  • Shane WIlson back at the track; #27 appeal on Wed: Former #27-Kevin Harvick crew chief Shane Wilson is already back in the Sprint Cup garage. Wilson, who was removed from Harvick's Richard Childress Racing team prior to last week's race at Bristol Motor Speedway, began working with the RCR team of #27-Paul Menard on Friday at Atlanta Motor Speedway. With Menard crew chief Slugger Labbe facing a six-week suspension for an illegal frame on Menard's car at Michigan, Wilson is preparing for the role as interim crew chief if Labbe's suspension is upheld on appeal. The outgoing Wilson didn't dwell much Friday on his split with Harvick, who had been critical of Wilson's changes to the car on the team's in-car radio. "I was glad it ended," Wilson said in an interview with Sporting News on Friday. "You could hear it (on the radio). I don't mean it in a smart-ass way, but I was relieved just to get it over with and move on to the next thing. It's hard to find a good job, and that was a good opportunity. If just a few things would have gone a little different, it would have been a lot better. You're upset a little bit but it's the way it goes in the business and you move on from it," Wilson said. "It is what it is. & (Our communication) wasn't very good. When it gets like that, you're kind of relieved when it finally happens. You move on and do the next thing." Wilson, 43, will spend this weekend learning the routine of Menard's team. He said he'd run that team the way Labbe wants and try to make the transition as smooth as possible. The appeal could come as early as next week [Note: scheduled for Wednesday, September 5], and that could mean Wilson will have a job for six more weeks. He said there could be other opportunities for him as a crew chief at RCR next year. He is ready for another opportunity after the tough 2012. "It probably drives me morewhen you fail sometimes or things don't work out as good as you want to, you learn stuff that you did wrong or what you would do different," said Wilson, who has 11 years of experience as a crew chief and worked with RCR's Clint Bowyer before joining Harvick. "It's all part of it. There's a lot of good crew chiefs in the business that had to move to a different driver. It takes a little hit on you for a while, but it will be fine. We were still eighth in points. It wasn't like it was a complete failure." Harvick has not yet addressed the crew chief change and has been unavailable for comment.(in part from the Sporting News)(8-31-2012)

  • Truex Jr. agrees to extension UPDATE: Martin Truex Jr. has agreed to an extension to stay in the #56 Toyota for Michael Waltrip Racing with NAPA as his primary sponsor. MWR has scheduled a press conference for Friday at Atlanta Motor Speedway where Truex and NASCAR president Mike Helton will be present to announce 2013 plans and unveil a car.(ESPN.com)(8-28-2012)
    UPDATE: Michael Waltrip Racing has agreed to multiyear contract extensions with Martin Truex Jr. and NAPA Auto Parts keeping Truex behind the wheel of the #56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. NAPA will continue as one of the few full-time primary sponsors in the series, sponsoring all 36 NASCAR Sprint Cup points races and the sport's two non-points events each season. "NAPA and I have been together a long time and they are family to me," said Michael Waltrip, who founded MWR and co-owns the three-car team with Rob Kauffman. "They have been to victory lane with me, helped me launch my own race team and have been our team's biggest supporter through the years. It is hard to describe how grateful I am that NAPA feels good enough about our organization to continue this partnership." Waltrip said re-signing Truex, who began racing for MWR in 2010, has been a priority.
    "Re-signing Martin was huge for us. We've given him competitive race cars and engines this year and he's been able to showcase his talent. Where I am most proud of Martin is off the track. He has dedicated himself to be a leader in our organization and has accepted his role as an ambassador for our sponsors. His work with NAPA, Toyota, AAA, along with his foundation work, has shown his maturity as a person and he makes me proud." MWR, Truex and NAPA have enjoyed unprecedented success in 2012. Currently fifth in Sprint Cup driver points and battling for a spot in the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship, Truex owns five top-five finishes and 13 top-10 finishes - all career bests.
    "Driving the NAPA Auto Parts Toyota means the world to me," said the 32-year-old Mayetta, N.J. native. "I knew when I signed on for the 2010 season that we had a lot of work to do to get the performance to where NAPA would be proud of us, and I also knew I had big shoes to fill in that NAPA uniform because Michael is the best at being an ambassador for sponsors. It is so gratifying that the hard work has paid off with competitive race cars every week. And I am more comfortable than ever that NAPA is my sponsor and I am their driver. It's my job to do everything I can to make sure we are together for the rest of my career."
    The company said its affinity for NASCAR has never been stronger. "We put a lot of time in evaluating where we choose to spend our marketing dollars and decided NASCAR continues to be a good fit for us. The sport garners tremendous fan support whose loyalty to NASCAR sponsors is unsurpassed and for that we are most appreciative," said Paul Donahue, President of Genuine Parts Company. "Once we decided on NASCAR, we determined that MWR was the team we wanted to continue to support. No other team has shown the improvement that MWR has over the past few seasons. We have been very pleased with the performance of Martin Truex, Jr. and the entire No. 56 NAPA team. Martin as well as all the folks at Michael Waltrip Racing continue to represent NAPA in a positive manner and we look forward to a successful partnership both on and off the track."(NAPA/MWR), see full PR on the #56 Team News and Links page.
    UPDATE: Martin Truex Jr. and primary sponsor NAPA have agreed to a three-year contract extension with Michael Waltrip Racing (AP), and see images of the 2013 #56 NAPA Toyota Camry..(8-31-2012)

  • #33 teams with Special Ops for Atlanta: Circle Sport, LLC, announced that Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, Inc.will sponsor the team's #33 Chevy driven by 2012 Rookie-of-the-Year contender Stephen Leicht in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race this weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Leicht, making his 12th start of the season, will pilot the #33 OPSECteam.org Chevrolet Impala under the lights at AMS in the AdvoCare 500 on Sunday night. The OPSEC name and logo will adorn the hood and quarter panels of the #33 along with the organization's web site www.OPSECteam.org to drive attention to the online documentary film "Dishonorable Disclosures."
    "We are honored that Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund has chosen to partner with Circle Sport as they look to bring awareness to their cause by connecting with the NASCAR fan base," stated Circle Sport team owner Joe Falk. "NASCAR is a powerful medium  just as is OPSEC's use of social media to promote its online documentary  and we hope to drive their message to the millions of NASCAR fans. It is also fitting that Scott Taylor has chosen the Labor Day weekend to broadcast OPSEC's message to a nationwide audience in NASCAR's premier series." Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, Inc. (OPSEC) is a 501(c)(4) social welfare organization and is composed of former members of U.S. special operations forces and intelligence community.(Circle Sport, LLC), see an image of the scheme on the #33 Team Schemes page.(8-31-2012)



  • Newman could break pole record: #39-Ryan Newman sits tied with Buddy Baker with seven poles at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Should Newman win the pole for the AdvoCare 500, he would break the tie and become the all-time leader with eight as well as log 50 career NSCS poles, putting him ninth on the all-time Cup poles in NASCAR.(AMS)(8-31-2012)

  • NASCAR still reviewing pit designs after Martin crash: No changes are planned for the first race on a high-speed oval since Mark Martin's violent collision with a pit wall at Michigan International Speedway, but NASCAR is reviewing tracks' pit designs. Martin was uninjured after his No. 55 Toyota skidded off Turn 4, down the pit road and into a wall opening at a sharp angle just behind the driver's-side door. The odds are slimmer that a car could squeeze through an opening in the same way during Sunday's AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. "Michigan had an incredibly large (pit) opening compared to some racetracks, probably twice the opening that the Atlanta openings are," vice president of competition Robin Pemberton told USA TODAY Sports. "Each (track) is unique, and sometimes it'll take a unique change to prevent something. We are in the process of looking at everything as we go forward."(more at USA Today)(8-31-2012)

  • Quaker State colors for Menard: The #27 Quaker State/Menards Chevy of Paul Menard will sport a different look this weekend when the Sprint Cup Series rolls into Atlanta Motor Speedway, carrying a special paint scheme of "Quaker State green" and "Menards yellow."(RCR), see images of the scheme on the #27 Team Schemes page.(8-31-2012)

  • U.S. Army Medicine Colors for Newman at Atlanta: This weekend, Ryan Newman will carry the ArmyMedicine logo on the hood of his #39 Chevy. Army Health Care is always in need of talented health care professionals and can offer young Americans experience and training unmatched in the private sector, as well as access to comprehensive financial and educational assistance. ArmyMedicine residents and physicians practice in state-of-the-art facilities, using advanced equipment and leading-edge technology (SHR)(8-30-2012)

  • Petty's 1992 STP Pontiac Grand Prix SE Race Car on display: Richard Petty, The King of NASCAR, ran his 1992 Cup Season as his farewell Fan Appreciation Tour. Petty concluded his 34-year racing career on November 15, 1992 at the Atlanta Motor Speedway in the legendary 1992 STP Pontiac. On the 94th lap, Petty was involved in an accident causing the car to go up in flames. Petty was fortunate to walk away uninjured. His crew was able to get the car back on the track to finish the race. After the race, Petty circled the track to salute his fans one last time in the trademark STP Pontiac. Visit the famed car located in Atlanta Motor Speedway's Fan Zone at the Goody's display.(AMS)(8-31-2012)

  • Subway back on Edwards car: The #99 Ford of Cael Edwards will carry the Subway paint scheme at Atlanta this weekend, the fifth time this season. Subway will sponsor one more this season, at Talladega in October (RFR), see images of the scheme/car on the #99 Team Schemes page.(8-31-2012)

  • Almirola gets Truck ride for Atlanta:
    Aric Almirola will pilot the #5 Jordan Truck Sales- Courtesy Ford Wauters Motorsports F150 Friday night in the Jeff Foxworthy's Grit Chips 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Almirola has two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series wins with Richie Wauters as the crew chief (Dover, Michigan 2010) and three previous starts at Atlanta's tricky, high-speed quad-oval in the series, with a best finish of third-place position in 2010. Sponsors of the #5 Ford F150, Jordan Truck Sales & Courtesy Ford, are based in the Atlanta, Georgia area. Rimrock Design, Lake City, Florida and Quick Lane Tire and Auto Center, Georgia will also be on the NASCAR truck for Friday nights event.(Wauters Motorsports)(8-31-2012)

  • Rheem on the #29 at Atlanta: Rheem will adorn the #29 Chevy of Kevin Harvick for the eighth of 10 scheduled races during the 2012 season this weekend at their home track, Atlanta Motor Speedway. Rheem is privately held with headquarters in Atlanta and U.S. operations in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Indiana, Minnesota and North Carolina. Rheem is the official heating, cooling and water heating supplier to Richard Childress Racing (RCR), see images of the scheme on the #29 Team Schemes page.(8-31-2012)


    News from August 30, 2012

  • RPM to return in 2013: Richard Petty Motorsports will remain a part of the Sprint Cup Series in 2013 despite a loss of manufacturer money and limited sponsorship, the co-owner told ESPN.com. Petty said he hopes to have a new deal with Ford in the next three weeks, but acknowledged it probably won't be as good financially since much of the manufacturer's money that went to RPM is going to Penske Racing. Penske is moving from Dodge to Ford in 2013. Petty did say that RPM currently has enough sponsorship to put two Cup cars on the track next year. "We've always been here, so we're going to be here,'' the Hall of Fame driver said. Petty wasn't so adamant on whether his driver lineup -- Marcos Ambrose in the #9 and Aric Almirola in the famed #43 -- would remain the same. Ambrose appears safe -- he's won this year and is safely inside the top 20 in points at 16th. Almirola signed a one-year deal and is 22nd in points. "We'll see," Petty said on his driver lineup. "Right now, everything we've got going is in the air, just like it has been the last three or four years."(ESPN)(8-30-2012)

  • Goodyear Quote on tire test at Kansas Speedway: Greg Stucker: Goodyear's Director of Race Tires: "After two days of testing at Kansas, we saw what was expected of a newly repaved track -- smooth, black asphalt and a considerable amount of grip. It took about a half-day of running with the nine cars involved in the test, but the track took rubber nicely and a narrow groove developed. We expect that groove to widen out during the race weekend. The recently-raced Michigan tire package was our 'control' for the test, with several other options in that compound range evaluated. That proved to be the correct choice based upon tire temperatures, wear and driver comments, and I'd say it is currently the leading candidate for our Kansas race tire."
    Nine NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams participated in the test, held Tuesday and Wednesday at the newly repaved Kansas Speedway. The teams and drivers were the #2 Penske Racing Dodge with Brad Keselowski, #9 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford with Marcos Ambrose, #17 Roush-Fenway Racing Ford with Matt Kenseth, #20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota with Joey Logano, #27 Richard Childress Racing Chevy with Paul Menard, #42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevy with Juan Pablo Montoya, #55 Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota with Mark Martin, #78 Furniture Row Racing Chevy with Regan Smith and #88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy with Dale Earnhardt Jr. NASCAR will return to Kansas for its race weekend with the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series cars on October 19-21.(Goodyear)(8-30-2012)

  • Bowyer happy that Truex Jr. is still in the MWR fold: #15-Clint Bowyer may be flying below the radar as a Chase contender, but he's happy that Michael Waltrip Racing teammate #56-Martin Truex Jr. has his new deal squared away. "Having Truex back as a teammate was something that I was very, very adamant about and supportive of," Bowyer told the NASCAR Wire Service on Wednesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. "I'm looking forward to where he's announcing that. "It's something that I'm looking forward to keeping for a long, long time. We raced a lot together back in the Nationwide days (both are former series champions), had a lot of respect for each other. We just push each other pretty good and work together well." Bowyer was at CMS to help promote the stunt scheduled as part of the festivities before the Oct. 13 Bank of America 500, the fifth race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Daredevil Nik Wallenda, who in June became the first person to walk across Niagara Falls on a high wire, will bring his talents to the speedway.(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-30-2012)

  • Sports Clips returns to sponsor Hamlin: This weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Sport Clips returns as the primary sponsor of Denny Hamlin's #11 Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) Toyota for the second time this season. Early this season Sport Clips sponsored the #11 Toyota at Darlington Raceway where Hamlin drove a retro paint scheme in honor of Cale Yarborough's induction in to the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Hamlin started the race eighth and finished second.(JGR), see images of the scheme on the #11 Team Schemes page.(8-30-2012)

  • What will Kurt Busch do in 2013? There is not another free agent as talented as Kurt Busch. The former Cup champion has bided his time with Phoenix Racing this season, as patiently as he could. However, since Busch has driven nothing but top-of-the-line equipment in his career, the tendency this season has been to overdrive the equipment in order to compensate. Yes, there's been plenty of twisted sheet metal to contend with and if team owner James Finch had an extensive fabrication shop, that wouldn't be a problem. But he doesn't. And the answer won't be bringing in a buy-ride next year with Brian Scott. As for Busch, he has met with several owners  two of whom were potential Dodge teams before the manufacturer elected not to return next year. Certainly, Furniture Row would still welcome Busch. He also has spoken to principals at Richard Petty Motorsports. However, Busch's best option to get his career back on track would be with Richard Childress Racing, if sponsorship can be secured.(FoxSports)(8-30-2012)

  • House-Autry Mills to sponsor Gilliland at Atlanta: House-Autry Mills, which will be the primary sponsor of David Gilliland's #38 Ford at Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend, has launched the House-Autry Racing Sweepstakes. Fans can enter to win David Gilliland's race-used Firesuit and a House-Autry gift pack. House-Autry's product line includes chicken, seafood and pork breaders, cornbread, hushpuppy and biscuit mixes, and sauces to complement your favorite fried and baked foods. The sweepstakes runs through October 31st. Fans can enter at Facebook.com/HouseAutryMills.(FRM), see images of the car on the #38 Team Schemes page.(8-30-2012)

  • Tony Stewart Takes Laps in Unconventional Vehicles at Charlotte: Mobil 1 fans select Formula Drift Camaro as the winning vehicle for Choose Tony's Ride with Mobil 1; Smoke also drives WW II-era tank. Last year, three-time and reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Tony Stewart swapped cars with Formula 1 World Champion Driver Lewis Hamilton for a day. This year, Mobil 1 gave fans the opportunity to Choose Tony's Ride. After three rounds of voting on the Mobil 1 Facebook page, Tony Stewart debuted the Mobil 1 Formula Drift Chevy Camaro SS as the "Choose Tony's Ride with Mobil 1" fan-favorite on Tuesday, August 28 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Smoke also decided he couldn't pass up the opportunity to operate the World War II-era M36 GMC Jackson Tank on the infield road course. Check out the photos and videos from the event, below. To see the results of the "Choose Tony's Ride with Mobil 1" voting and to learn more about all the vehicles involved, visit the Mobil 1 Facebook page.(Mobil1)(8-30-2012)

  • Tightrope Walker Nik Wallenda to do aerial show at Charlotte: Fans have come to expect plenty of speed, danger and fun on the track at Charlotte Motor Speedway, but on Oct. 13 they'll be looking up  way up  for an aerial show that's sure to delight during the Bank of America pre-race show presented by Nickelodeon's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. World famous tightrope walker Nik Wallenda, who made headlines earlier this year when he traversed a 1,500-foot span across Niagara Falls on live television, will bring his high-wire thrill show to Charlotte Motor Speedway. No previous show has risen to the heights that will be achieved during this year's Bank of America 500, when Wallenda, a six-time Guinness World Record holder for various acrobatic achievements, takes to the high wire. Wallenda will descend from above the frontstretch grandstands over a span of more than 750 feet to a crane set up behind Victory Circle, all while balancing on a tiny 5/8-inch cord. At times the cord will hang more than 100 feet  10 stories  above the ground, and his total walk will equal the length of two-and-a-half football fields. This year's performance marks the 26th anniversary of The Flying Wallendas' high-wire act at Charlotte Motor Speedway in 1986, when Nik's predecessors walked from the grandstands down to pit road as part of a circus-themed prerace show. "I'm honored to continue the great Wallenda family tradition performing at Charlotte Motor Speedway," Wallenda said. "The speedway has always set the bar for pre-race entertainment and excitement, and I'm looking forward to raising that bar to new heights this year." Wallenda said he is excited about the opportunity to showcase his talents at one of the world's premier entertainment venues and to add his name to the growing list of world-renowned performers who have thrilled audiences during pre-race events here over the past 35 years. To purchase tickets, call the Charlotte Motor Speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS (3267) or visit charlottemotorspeedway.com.(CMS)(8-30-2012)

  • Martinsville and Pepsi extend sponsorship: Martinsville Speedway and PepsiCo today announced an extension of their 65-year partnership with a new multi-year beverage contract. PepsiCo beverages, including iconic brands such as Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Gatorade, Aquafina and Brisk, will continue to be exclusively served at the track, while Pepsi will remain the official soft drink of Martinsville Speedway. The renewed agreement continues one of the longest running partnerships in the history of racing. PepsiCo's Frito-Lay snacks are also sold at the track through Martinsville Speedway's foodservice distributor Americrown. Founded in 1947 by the late H. Clay Earles, Martinsville Speedway is only track remaining on the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit that hosted an event in the series' inaugural year, 1949.(Martinsville Speedway)(8-30-2012)


    News from August 29, 2012

  • Edwards and Shell? UPDATE: a bit of speculation that bears watching in the next few weeks concerns Carl Edwards. There is one unconfirmed report that Ford executives -- who remember played a key financial role in keeping Edwards from jumping to Toyota last summer -- may want to put Edwards in a Shell-Pennzoil sponsored car in 2013. How that might play out is unclear, since Shell-Pennzoil is a Roger Penske sponsor. However Penske has been dragging his feet on picking a new driver for that team for next season, letting veteran Sam Hornish fill out the time for departed AJ Allmendinger. And Penske says the ultimate call on that driver would be Shell-Pennzoil officials. Penske would like to bring Hornish back to the Cup tour next season, as part of a three-car operation, if he can resolve the Shell-Pennzoil situation. Joey Logano is figured to be angling for the Penske ride. (Head-to-head the past five weeks, Hornish has averaged a 14.8 finish, Logano 24.6.)(mikemulhern.net)(8-24-2012)
    UPDATE: from a NASCAR Teleconference with #99-Carl Edwards:
    Q. You brought up the #22. One of the parts of that rumor was that you had an out in your contract if you didn't make the Chase. I didn't know whether you wanted to address part of that rumor as well.
    CARL EDWARDS: I appreciate you asking. But I don't ever talk about specifics of my contract with the media. I think those are private contracts. I think there's even a line in there that says I can't talk about specifics of my contract and neither can other folks. No, I don't want to talk about any of those specifics. But truly, I can tell you this, I will be driving the #99 Fastenal Ford next year. I've never explored the option of driving the #22 car. That's why it took me so long to mention to you guys, I thought that was so silly that it had traction, but I guess it had.Does that satisfy you guys? Is there any other part of it that I have not addressed?
    Q. I guess the only other part would be if Shell could come over to you.
    CARL EDWARDS: "That's a good question. I don't know. I don't think so. I've never spoken with anyone at Shell. No one has brought that up. So that would be a good question for Steve. But right now the way I understand it, full disclosure, I know nothing more than I am driving the Fastenal Ford Fusion for Jack Roush next year, the #99. I'm excited about it. If there's any other things like that going on, I do not know about them, which is probably better. Is there any other part?"(NASCAR)(8-29-20102)

  • Goodyear Atlanta Tire Notes & Facts: Teams in all three NASCAR series in action at Atlanta this weekend will run the same tire codes, though the Sprint Cup and Nationwide tires will be branded "Goodyear Eagle," while the Camping World Truck tires will be branded "Goodyear Wrangler" . . . this is the same combination of left- and right-side tires that teams in all three of these series ran at Atlanta last season . . . Sprint Cup and Nationwide teams also ran this exact tire set-up at Atlanta in September 2010 . . . this left-side tire code dates back to the spring 2010 races at Atlanta in the Cup and Truck series, though it was run with a different right-side code . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run liners in all four tire positions at Atlanta. . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire. See tire codes, pressures and more on the Atlanta Race Info page - Goodyear section.(8-29-2012)

  • Earnhardt Jr. wrecks in Kansas testing, is OK: #88-Dale Earnhardt, Jr., was treated and released from the Infield Care Center at Kansas Speedway this morning [Wednesday, August 29], after a hard crash during the second day of a scheduled Goodyear tire test at the speedway. Earnhardt's Hendrick Motorsports Chevy reportedly suffered a right-front tire failure and made heavy contact with the outside wall. The car was severely damaged, but Earnhardt walked from the Infield Care Center under his own power. He is one of eight drivers testing on the newly repaved 1.5-mile tri-oval today, as Goodyear researches a new tire compound for use at the speedway. In addition to replacing the track's aging asphalt, crews reworked its 15-degree banking to new, variable degree banking ranging from 17-20 degrees.(Godfather Motorsports)(8-29-2012)

  • Stewart denies crew chief rumor: #14-Tony Stewart denied on Tuesday a weekend social media report that Greg Zipadelli would become his crew chief in 2013. "No, that's not true,'' Stewart said during a promotion for sponsor Mobil 1 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. "That's the first I've even heard about it. Nobody has thought about that or discussed that. We're pretty comfortable where we're at with our lineup right now.'' Stewart and Zipadelli won two Sprint Cup titles together at Joe Gibbs Racing before Stewart became the driver/owner of Stewart-Haas Racing in 2009. Zipadelli joined Stewart as competition director at SHR this season. Zipadelli also is the crew chief for #10-Danica Patrick's 10 Cup races this season. Stewart said there are no plans to leave Zipadelli with Patrick when she moves to Cup full time in 2013.(ESPN)(8-29-2012)

  • JGR to announce Kenseth as driver next week? Joe Gibbs Racing plans to announce next Tuesday [Sept. 4th] that Matt Kenseth will be its newest driver beginning in 2013. The 2003 Sprint Cup champion will take over the #20 team driven by Joey Logano with Home Depot as his primary sponsor. JGR president J.D. Gibbs said on Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway he still held out hope of re-signing Logano and adding a fourth team if sponsorship can be found. Logano is not expected to be a part of Tuesday's press conference. Logano also is a candidate for the #22 Cup team at Penske Racing. He recently said he was not interesting in a part-time Cup ride and full-time Nationwide Series ride that was one of his options at JGR. "He was OK with that until another opportunity came up," Gibbs said of Logano.(ESPN)(8-29-2012)

  • Kansas Speedway Tire Test update: Several NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams took to the newly reconfigured Kansas Speedway today and the reviews are in  and they have been pretty positive as teams navigate the variable banking for the first time. "I think they did a really nice job repaving," said Matt Kenseth. "Drivers aren't huge fans of repaves, especially being the first ones on the track, by this afternoon the cars were more comfortable on the track. I think the repave is awesome." Regan Smith agreed. "We've seen quite a few of these this year already. They did a pretty good job with this one."
    For Dale Earnhardt Jr., the day was about getting some time on the track. "It's nice to get out on the track. It's nice to see the track. I like this place," said Earnhardt, Jr. "The banking will add speed to the race track and one and two definitely have more banking. This should be a fast little race track."
    Kenseth, who holds the track record of 180.856 mph set back in 2005, expects a new track record this fall. "We're already running, the last lap was 30.30 or something," said Kenseth. "You know it's going to be faster when everybody runs in qualifying runs. I expect it to be the high 28s in a qualifying run."
    The Goodyear Tire Test resumes tomorrow at 9:00am/et and is open and free to the public. Fans are asked to enter at Michigan Dr. off of Speedway Blvd. Due to another event setting up at Kansas Speedway, fans will only be able to enter at Gate D (closest to Turn 1) and sit in sections 169 and 171. Parking will be available in lots 5 and 6. Parking lots and gates will open at 8:30 AM. Sprint FanWalk will not be open. Restroom facilities will be open. Concessions will not be available, however fans are permitted to bring in a 14x14x14-inch soft-sided cooler with their favorite food and beverages.
    Tickets for the Oct. 21 Hollywood Casino 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, the Oct. 20 Kansas Lottery 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series race and the Oct. 19 Kansas Lottery 98.9 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards race are on sale now by calling 866.460.RACE (7223) or visiting www.kansasspeedway.com. Parking is always free at Kansas Speedway and fans can bring in one 14x14x14-inch soft-sided cooler with their favorite food and beverages.(Kansas Speedway)(8-29-2012)

  • Chase Spots Up For Grabs At Atlanta, scenarios: #16-Greg Biffle, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #17-Matt Kenseth have locked up spots in the 2012 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup going into Sunday's race in Atlanta, the penultimate race in the regular season. Eight other drivers can join them in donning the black-and-yellow Chase-clinching hat after Sunday's race.
    Mathematically, every top-10 Chase spot could be clinched. This week's magic number is 49. Any driver 49 points ahead of 11th-place leaving Atlanta (48 points for some, depending on the tie-breaker of wins) clinches a top-10 spot in the Chase.
    Four drivers control their own top-10 destiny: Kenseth (who already owns AT LEAST a Wild Card spot), #56-Martin Truex Jr., #15-Clint Bowyer and #2-Brad Keselowski.
    Regardless of what any other driver does, Kenseth clinches a top-10 spot by finishing 40th or better, 41st and at least one lap led or 42nd and the most laps led.
    Truex guarantees himself a top-10 Chase spot with a 14th-place finish or better, a 15th and at least one lap led or a 16th and the most laps led.
    Bowyer needs an 11th, 12th and at least one lap led or 13th and the most laps led.
    Keselowski lands a top-10 spot with a seventh-place finish or better, an eighth and at least one lap led or a ninth and the most laps led.
    #11-Denny Hamlin, 29-Kevin Harvick and #14-Tony Stewart could also lock up top-10 spots, but would need help. A win would lock up at least a Wild Card spot for Hamlin, Harvick and Stewart. Depending on the final results from Sunday, Bowyer, Keselowski, Hamlin, Stewart, Kasey Kahne and Kyle Busch could clinch at least a Wild Card spot.(NASCAR)(8-29-2012)

  • Clint Bowyer, Team Featured in Special Program: NASCAR fans can go behind-the-scenes with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Clint Bowyer and the Michael Waltrip Racing team in a one-hour special program airing Sunday, Sept. 2, at 2:00pm/et on ABC. Catching Speed, produced by award-winning NASCAR Productions, is a glimpse into how a team prepares during the week for a big race like the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The show focuses on the #15 5-Hour Energy Toyota team during the week and throughout the race in Indianapolis. Fans will be able to listen to crew chiefs and engineers in competition meetings, pit crew members during pit practices and mechanics working on the car  all in preparation for Indy. Catching Speed re-airs on Sunday, Sept. 9, at 2:30pm/et on ESPN2. All NASCAR programming on ESPN and ESPN2 is also available on computers, smartphones and tablets with the WatchESPN app and WatchESPN.com.(ESPN)(8-29-2012)

  • Harvicks and their dog on TV: #29-Kevin Harvick and his wife DeLana, along with their Chihuahua, LO, will be featured in an episode [Daytona Dogs] of the "The Dog Whisperer." Host, Cesar Millan, joined the Harvicks at their motorcoach at Daytona International Speedway in February to help tame the half-pint pup. The NASCAR-related episode is scheduled to air on Saturday, September 1 on Nat Geo Wild at 8:00pm/et; please check local listings for further details.(RCR)(8-29-2012)

  • Pocono Raceway Announces 2013 Race Dates: Pocono Raceway announced its 2013 NASCAR events will be held on their traditional weekends and feature NASCAR's premier series, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. The June 9, Pocono 400 and the August 4, Pennsylvania 400 be the cornerstone for each race weekend. The Pocono 400 will kick-off "The Tricky Triangle's" season-opening NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekend, June 7-9. NASCAR's top touring series will be accompanied by the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards with the 27th running of the Pocono 200, set for Saturday, June 8th. On Sunday, June 9th, Joey Logano will look to repeat his 2012 winning performance in the 32nd running of the Pocono 400.
    The 40th annual Pennsylvania 400 takes over the spotlight for Pocono's second NASCAR weekend, August 2-4. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series rejoins the Sprint Cup Series and ARCA Series for a triple-header weekend of racing action. The Truck and ARCA Racing Series events are scheduled for Saturday, August 3rd. On Sunday, August 4th, defending race champion Jeff Gordon will lead the charge in the Pennsylvania 400.
    Grandstand ticket prices for the 2013 NASCAR race at Pocono Raceway remain the same as the 2012 season. Friday and Saturday General Admission tickets will cost $10 and $20, ($25 at the gate) respectively. Children, ages 12 and under, accompanied by an adult holding a General Admission ticket will be admitted free on Friday and Saturday. Sunday Grandstand tickets start at $45, all Concourse-Level tickets will remain at half-price for kids ages 12 and under. Tickets to the 2013 events at Pocono Raceway will be available to the general public following our customer renewal process. Please visit poconoraceway.com. Pocono Raceway is the world's largest solar powered sports facility. The Raceway developed a 25 acre, three megawatt solar farm that provides the energy needs of the Raceway as well as adding electricity to the local power grid.(Pocono Raceway), see which 2013 race dates have been confirmed and a rough idea of what the 2013 Scheduled could look like on the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Schedule page.(8-29-2012)


    News from August 28, 2012

  • Bristol TV Ratings: ABC's live telecast of Saturday night's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway was the most-viewed summer race at Bristol for ESPN or ABC and earned a 3.7 rating, averaging 5,905,051 viewers, according to the Nielsen Company. The viewership mark was set despite the race being pre-empted on ABC in Buffalo, Detroit, Rochester and Tulsa by NFL preseason games and in Miami due to hurricane coverage. The race telecast aired on different channels in those markets that are not included in the national rating. The rating was up from a 3.4 rating for the 2010 race, which was run and telecast as scheduled. Due to unusual circumstances, the 2011 race aired in part of the country on ABC, earning a 2.9 rating, but aired in other parts of the country on both ESPN and ESPN2. Hurricane Irene coverage in much of the East and NFL preseason games in some other markets led to the unusual TV coverage. Charlotte led all TV markets with a 9.9 rating for Saturday's Bristol telecast, followed closely by Indianapolis with a 9.8 rating.(ESPN), see past race TV Ratings race-by-race for four years on the 2012 TV Ratings page.(8-28-2012)

  • Green Smoke to Sponsor T.J. Bell at Atlanta: Green Smoke announced that it will return as primary sponsor of T.J. Bell's #32 Ford Fusion fielded by FAS Lane Racing in Sunday night's AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. In addition, as the anniversary of 9/11 approaches, Green Smoke is honoring the sacrifices of our nation's uniformed men and women by donating the 32 car's quarter panels and TV panel to the Travis Manion Foundation, an organization that assists our nation's veterans and the families of fallen heroes. Green Smoke will support the Travis Manion Foundation by advertising its 9/11 Heroes Run on Bell's quarter panels. The 9/11 Heroes Run is a national race series held annually on the weekend closest to September 11th. Proceeds from the run directly support and address the issues affecting the veteran community and also provide financial support to local veteran and first responder 501 (c) 3 charities. The 9/11 Heroes Run strives to honor the fallen and challenge people to take part in an event that recognizes the service and sacrifice of so many that serve our country every day. For more information on race dates and location, log onto www.911heroesrun.com. Bell's TV panel will offer another way to support the foundation. It encourages everyone to donate $10 to the organization by texting "Heroes" to 27722. The AdvoCare 500 will mark Bell's first Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Bell has one Nationwide Series start at the 1.5-mile race track. He started 29th and finished 27th. In Camping World Truck Series competition, Bell has four starts. His best finish is ninth place, which he achieved in 2008.(Breaking Limits), see image of the scheme on the #32 Team Schemes page.(8-28-2012)

  • Hillenburg Spirit Award recipient for second quarter: Members of the National Motorsports Press Association have selected Rockingham Speedway President Andy Hillenburg as the second quarter winner of the NMPA Speedway Motorsports Spirit Award. Hillenburg was selected for his efforts to return Rockingham Speedway to prominence. He purchased the track at auction in October 2007 and in April of 2012 NASCAR returned to the track for the first time since 2004. Also receiving votes were: Jimmie Johnson, Ricky Benton Racing, Ellen Siska and Tony Stewart. The award is designed to recognize character and achievement in the face of adversity, sportsmanship and contributions to motorsports. Each year, quarterly winners are selected, and an overall winner is determined by a vote of the National Motorsports Press Association membership. Sprint Cup driver Clint Bowyer was the first quarter winner of the award.(NMPA)(8-28-2012)

  • Truex Jr. agrees to extension: Martin Truex Jr. has agreed to an extension to stay in the #56 Toyota for Michael Waltrip Racing with NAPA as his primary sponsor. MWR has scheduled a press conference for Friday at Atlanta Motor Speedway where Truex and NASCAR president Mike Helton will be present to announce 2013 plans and unveil a car.(ESPN.com)(8-28-2012)

  • Stewart will not be penalized: NASCAR will not penalize #14-Tony Stewart for throwing his helmet at Matt Kenseth's car during the race Saturday night at Bristol Motor Speedway, NASCAR spokesman Kerry Tharp said Monday afternoon. The sanctioning body, which has been more lenient on driver behavior the past several years, did not penalize Camping World Truck Series driver Todd Bodine for throwing his helmet at another competitor's vehicle earlier this month at Pocono. NASCAR did confiscate Stewart's helmet.(Sporting News)(8-28-2012)

  • AdvoCare to Sponsor #43 Ford at Atlanta: Health and wellness company AdvoCare will power the #43 Ford Fusion on Labor Day weekend, sponsoring Aric Almirola at the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The award-winning company, which offers energy, weight-loss, nutrition, and sports performance products, will also be the title sponsor of the September 2 Sprint Cup race, the AdvoCare 500, for the second consecutive year. The event will mark the 2012 debut of the AdvoCare blue and white colors on Richard Petty Motorsports' #43 Ford Fusion. But the company is no stranger to Almirola. The 28-year-old driver is a regular user of AdvoCare products in his nutrition and fitness regimen.(RPM)(8-28-2012)

  • Facts and Notes at Atlanta Motor Speedway: · Originally called Atlanta International Raceway, the track was then a 1.5-mile paved speedway. · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Atlanta was on July 31, 1960, won by Fireball Roberts from the pole. · The track was re-measured to 1.522 miles in the spring of 1970. · It was renamed Atlanta Motor Speedway in 1990. · The track layout was reversed and the track was re-configured to 1.54 miles between the two races in 1997. · There have been 104 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Atlanta Speedway, until 2010 there has been two races per year except 1961, which had three. This year marks the second season with only one event. · Fireball Roberts won the pole and race for the first NASCAR Sprint Cup race in 1960. · 45 drivers have won a pole, led by Buddy Baker and Ryan Newman, each with seven. · Six of Newman's seven poles came in consecutive races between March 2003 and October 2005. · 42 drivers have won a race; 22 have won more than once. · Dale Earnhardt scored nine victories, more than any other driver. Cale Yarborough is second, with seven. · Bobby Labonte heads the list of active drivers with six victories. Labonte is tied with NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Richard Petty for third on the all-time win list at Atlanta. · The Wood Brothers have 12 victories, more than any organization. They last won there in 1993, with Morgan Shepherd. Hendrick Motorsports has 11 wins at Atlanta and could tie the Wood Brothers this weekend. · 14 races have been won from the pole. The last to do so was Kasey Kahne in 2006. The last two races have been won from the fifth position. · 60 races at Atlanta have been won from the first five starting positions. · Bobby Labonte won the 2001 fall race from the 39th starting position, the deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Atlanta. (NASCAR)(8-28-2012)

  • First Response Team of America and the #31: The First Response Team of America will be featured on Jeff Burton's #31 Caterpillar Chevy during race weekend and Caterpillar's billboard around the track. The First Response Team of America works with the Weather Channel to fill the gap between the onset of a disaster and the arrival of traditional relief agencies. Caterpillar and Richard Childress Racing partnered to offer fans a special ticket offer where a portion of the proceeds will go to the First Response Team of America. Tad Agoglia, founder of the First Response Team will be on site race weekend as a guest of Caterpillar and Richard Childress Racing.(AMS)(8-28-2012)

  • Divers, officials continue to look for pilot involved in helicopter crash: Virginia State Police Search & Recovery Team divers with the assistance of the Sullivan County, Tenn. County Sheriff's Office dive team have spent the day searching the waters of South Holston Lake on the Washington County, Va., side for the pilot of the helicopter that crashed late Friday night (August 24, 2012). The divers will continue their search and recovery efforts through the evening. At approximately 10:30 p.m. Friday, a Bell 407 helicopter, owned by Food City, crashed into the lake shortly after takeoff from a nearby residential property. The helicopter had been ferrying passengers from the Bristol Motor Speedway to the residence. The helicopter had just dropped off six passengers and taken off when the crash occurred. Only the pilot, who is male and an East Tennessee resident, was onboard at the time of the crash.
    Virginia State Police Search and Recovery Team (SRT) dive members spent much of Friday night searching the wreckage for the pilot. This morning, the SRT brought to the scene a side-scan sonar to use for the search for the pilot. The helicopter did break apart upon impact with the water, with the bulk of the aircraft still submerged in the water. The depths of the water at the crash site ranges from approximately 25 to 40 feet. The FAA responded to the scene Saturday morning to conduct its investigation. The cause of the crash remains under investigation.(WJHL)(8-25-2012)
    UPDATE: The Virginia Highlands Airport was flying its U.S. and state flags at half-mast Saturday in memory of a missing pilot, although airport employees declined to comment on the crash of the Bell helicopter registered to the parent company of the Food City grocery stores. The pilot has been missing since the late Friday crash into South Holston Lake, though rescue crews have been searching nearly round the clock since then. According to a 2011 article in the online trade publication Aviation International News, Food City's pilot, Bill Starnes, had amassed at least 26,500 accident-free flying hours when he was recognized in November with a National Business Aviation Association Pilot Flying Safety Award, as K-VA-T's chief pilot.(Bristol Herald Courier)(8-26-2012)
    UPDATE2: After three days of continuous searching, the pilot from Friday night's helicopter crash was recovered from South Holston Lake Monday afternoon (Aug. 27, 2012). Using a side-scan sonar, the Virginia State Police Search and Recovery Team (SRT) located the pilot's body in approximately 80 feet of water about 100 yards from the wreckage of the helicopter. Shortly after 3 p.m., his body was recovered from the water and is being transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Roanoke for examination and autopsy. The pilot, Bill R. Starnes, 64, of Blountville, Tenn., was the only one onboard the Bell 407 helicopter Friday night (Aug. 24, 2012) when it crashed into the lake. The helicopter, owned and operated by Food City, had been ferrying passengers from the Bristol Motor Speedway to a private residence bordering South Holston Lake on the Washington County, Va., side. The helicopter had just dropped off six passengers and taken off when the crash occurred at approximately 10:30 p.m..(WJHL.(8-28-2012)

  • Tony Stewart vs. Matt Kenseth Ticket Special for AdvoCare 500: Following Saturday night's Tony Stewart and Matt Kenseth crash and Stewart's subsequent helmet toss at Kenseth's car, Atlanta Motor Speedway has created a promotion giving fans the opportunity to take advantage of a special post-incident ticket price while choosing side in who was at fault in the tangle. Through Sunday night's AdvoCare 500, Stewart fans purchasing three Lower Champions Grandstand tickets will receive their fourth ticket for only $14 while Kenseth followers can receive their fourth ticket for only $17, representing savings of $85 and $82, respectively. The ticket prices reflect the car numbers for both drivers involved in the much talked-about crash while racing for the lead in Saturday's Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol. The special pricing is for start/finish line area seats in rows 1-23 of the Champions Grandstand. Tickets may be purchased online at www.atlantamotorspeedway.com, through the Atlanta Motor Speedway ticket office at (877) 9-AMS-TIX, at Ticketmaster outlets or in-person at the AMS ticket office or ticket windows this weekend. For information on the Stewart/Kenseth special offer and all of this weekend's activities, visit www.atlantamotorspeedway.com.(AMS)(8-28-2012)


    News from August 27, 2012

  • The Entry List for the AdvoCare 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is posted, 47 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including:
    Danica Patrick is back in the #10 Chevy. T.J. Bell is in the #32 Ford
    Not in top 35 of owners points:
    #19-Mike Bliss (45/18)
    #21-Trevor Bayne (37/9)(race winner 2011/2012)
    #23-Scott Riggs (44/22)
    #26-Josh Wise (40/24)
    #30-David Stremme (38/24)
    #33-Stephen Leicht (36/24)
    #37-J.J. Yeley (53/9)
    #49-Jason Leffler (38/21)
    #87-Joe Nemechek (42/24)
    #91-Reed Sorenson (54/4)
    #95-Scott Speed (43/8)
    #98-Michael McDowell (41/24)
    In the event that qualifying is cancelled:
    the eight who would make it [8]: #'s 21,33,30,98,26,87,23,49
    missing the race would be [4]: # 19,95,37,91
    More info about qualifying, rain out, etc on my Qualifying Rules page.
    See the full entry list at my Jayski's Atlanta Entry List

  • Good Sam/Camping World To Sponsor Bayne & Wood Brothers in three upcoming races: The red, yellow, and blue paint scheme of Good Sam/Camping World will return to the Wood Brothers' #21 Ford Fusion next week in the AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. In addition to the Atlanta race, the pairing will also appear at Chicagoland Speedway, the home track for Good Sam/Camping World, on Sept. 16, and at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Oct. 13.
    The sponsorship from Good Sam/Camping World has allowed the Wood Brothers and driver Trevor Bayne to significantly increase their schedule this year. At the beginning of the 2012 Sprint Cup season, the defending winners of the sport's biggest race, the Daytona 500, had a schedule consisting of 12 races for the 2012 season. Following the season opener at Daytona, a phone call was made to Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Good Sam/Camping World, inquiring if he would be interested in working with the Wood Brothers, a partnership that had already been created from the previous season. Mr. Lemonis accepted the offer and this led to an increase of four additional races, including the Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway back in May.
    Team co-owner Eddie Wood said he and his team are proud to be representing Good Sam/Camping World in some of the Sprint Cup Series' most important races, among them, the Labor Day weekend classic at Atlanta, and the first race of the Chase for the Sprint Cup, at Chicagoland. "We're happy to have Good Sam/Camping World back on the car for three of our next four races," Wood said. "Hopefully our car will continue to have the speed it's had this season and we can make Mr. Lemonis proud."(Wood Brothers Racing)(8-27-2012)

  • Hamlin wins an extra $10,000 for charity: Call it the $10,000 dance. The signature driver introductions before Saturday's Night Race had a little extra pizzazz as the 43 competitors vied to be chosen as the top act through a fan vote with legendary ring announcer Michael Buffer MC'ing the festivities. Before he won the race, #11-Denny Hamlin won the crowd's affections  and $10,000 for the charity of his choice  by showing off his dance moves for the second straight Cup event at BMS, this time wiggling through the "Wobble" dance to the namesake song by V.I.C. #14-Tony Stewart also drew plenty of cheers by channeling the driver voted the sport's most popular nine straight times. "Hey, I'm Dale Earnhardt Jr.," Stewart said during his introduction. "Have a good time tonight." #18-Kyle Busch drew his usual chorus of boos when he stepped on the track, entering to the song "Rowdy Busch" written in his honor by NASCAR rapper Raytona 500.(Bristol Herald Couirer)(8-27-2012)

  • Atlanta Motor Speedway Unveils the Speedway's "Rev It Up Crew": Fans will have several opportunities to meet the brand new Atlanta Motor Speedway "Rev It Up Crew" during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AdvoCare 500 weekend, Aug. 31-Sept. 2. The Rev It Up Crew will visit various areas in the midway on Sunday, Sept. 2 prior to the AdvoCare 500. Fans are encouraged to stop by and visit with the girls, get autographs and take photos with the team. Following their visit with fans in the Fan Zone, they will perform a dance routine and take part in a Q&A session with fans on the Coca-Cola Fan Stage, all before making their way to the pre-race stage for the AdvoCare 500. NASCAR night racing returns to Atlanta Motor Speedway on Labor Day weekend, Aug. 31-Sept. 2, 2012. Reserve your AdvoCare 500 tickets now. For more information, call the Atlanta Motor Speedway ticket office at (877) 9-AMS-TIX, (770) 946-4211 or visit atlantamotorspeedway.com.(AMS)(8-27-2012)


    News from August 26, 2012

  • Drivers absent of top-5's and top-10's: Three drivers have run ALL 24 races in 2012 but do not have a top-ten finish: #13-Mears, #38-Gilliland and #83-Cassill. Ten drivers do not have a top-five finish: the three without a top-ten and the following seven drivers: #1-McMurray, #27-Menard, #34-Ragan, #42-Montoya, #43-Almirola, #47-Labonte and #78-Smith.(8-26-2012)

  • Commercial breakdown for the Irwin Tools Night Race: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Saturday's race. Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 7:31 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 11:00 PM (all times are EST). ESPN on ABC was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 120
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 57
    Number of 'Side-by-Side' commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 0
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast: 22
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 3 min. 5 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 7:31 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 11:00 PM
    Total minutes of complete broadcast: 209
    Minutes of race broadcast: 157
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 52
    Minutes of 'Side-by-Side' commercials (split-screen): 0
    Number of missed restarts: 1 and two close calls
    Number of 'mystery cautions' (debris not shown): 0
    Total number of hoisted helmets: 1
    Total number of furious finger wags: 1
    Total race brdcst time 157 Total comm. brdcst time 52
    See past races, sponsor links and more on the 2012 TV Commercials page.(8-26-2012)

  • Stewart comments on wreck: The revamped Bristol Motor Speedway, where the banking in the upper groove of the racetrack was reduced to the same degree as the middle of the track surface, gave the .533-mile concrete bullring its luster of yesteryear with plenty of bent sheet metal that left plenty of drivers bent with one another. Count Tony Stewart among them, as the driver of the #14 Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevrolet for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) finished 27th in the Irwin Tools Night Race after tangling with Matt Kenseth for the lead on lap 333. Stewart was none too pleased with Kenseth's driving tactics, and the 14-year NASCAR Sprint Cup Series veteran showed his displeasure to Kenseth when after climbing from his battered racecar, he threw his helmet at Kenseth. Stewart was as precise with his throw as he was with his words afterward, as the helmet struck Kenseth's Ford square in the nose.
    "I checked-up twice to not run over him, and I learned my lesson there," said Stewart of Kenseth. "I'm going to run over him every chance I've got from now 'til the end of the year  every chance I've got. We ran on the restart faster than him each lap, so we just learned our lesson that next time  just drive through him, not even be patient by him. We're not going to give him that chance again."
    The helmet toss was retro Stewart, as the three-time and reigning Sprint Cup champion was combustible in his early years on the circuit. However, experience and team ownership, as Stewart is a driver-owner at SHR, mellowed him in recent years. Nonetheless, the dustup with Kenseth, where Stewart was vying for the win, left him seething over what might've been. That Stewart was even in contention for the win was amazing. He went a lap down to leader Joey Logano on lap 74 with a racecar that plowed through the track's high-banked corners. Stewart dropped to as low as 34th in the 43-car field, but smart chassis adjustments by crew chief Steve Addington brought the Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevy around. When the caution came out on lap 149, Stewart earned his lap back. With further chassis adjustments, Stewart climbed the leaderboard, cracking the top-10 on lap 270. When the caution came out again on lap 323, Addington kept Stewart out on the track to gain valuable track position. It worked, as Stewart lined up second to leader Kenseth for the restart on lap 329. "We weren't that great of a race car," Stewart said, "but we were definitely faster than that after that restart." Stewart doggedly pursued Kenseth, edging ahead of the 2004 Sprint Cup champion before the two drivers slapped doors coming off turn four and spun into the retaining wall separating the track from pit road. Stewart's car wouldn't restart and he climbed from it, scanning the track for Kenseth. When Stewart found Kenseth and his No. 17 Ford ambling down pit road, Stewart the southpaw unleashed his helmet, and as it caromed off the nose of Kenseth's car, the crowd roared in approval.(SHR)
    AND #14-Tony Stewart was sidelined in accident with #17-Matt Kenseth on lap 333, some quotes from a Team Chevy PR:
    Q) WHAT HAPPENED? YOU HAD A GREAT RACE CAR
    Stewart: "We weren't that great of a race car. But we were definitely faster than that after that restart. I checked-up twice to not run over him (Kenseth) and I learned my lesson there; I'm going to run over him every him every chance I've got from now 'til the end of the year, every chance I've got."
    Q) YOU'LL GET THAT HELMET BACK. YOUR AIM WAS PRECISE
    Stewart: "I don't give a crap. The hell with the helmet."(Team Chevy)(8-26-2012)

  • Kurt Busch teams up with Finch-Ballew to run Atlanta truck race: Kurt Busch will drive a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Chevy in next Friday night's Jeff Foxworthy's Grit Chips 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway, as part of a joint venture involving Billy Ballew Motorsports and Phoenix Racing. The truck is an 11-time winner in recent seasons with drivers Kyle Busch, Shane Hmiel and Aric Almirola at the wheel. It was most recently campaigned by Vision Aviation Racing in 2011, before that team closed its doors. Reskinned as a Chevy and outfitted with a Hendrick engine, the truck will be entered by Ballew, but prepared and crewed by Phoenix Racing. "I'm helping Billy out a little," confirmed Finch today. "He's going to field the truck, and I'm helping him out by loaning him a pit crew and a driver." "We haven't announced anything yet," said Ballew, "but I'm about 99% sure it's going to happen. I'll know for sure by Monday, but I'm confident enough that we already sent the entry in to NASCAR."(Godfather Motorsports)(8-26-2012)

  • Divers, officials continue to look for pilot involved in helicopter crash: Virginia State Police Search & Recovery Team divers with the assistance of the Sullivan County, Tenn. County Sheriff's Office dive team have spent the day searching the waters of South Holston Lake on the Washington County, Va., side for the pilot of the helicopter that crashed late Friday night (August 24, 2012). The divers will continue their search and recovery efforts through the evening. At approximately 10:30 p.m. Friday, a Bell 407 helicopter, owned by Food City, crashed into the lake shortly after takeoff from a nearby residential property. The helicopter had been ferrying passengers from the Bristol Motor Speedway to the residence. The helicopter had just dropped off six passengers and taken off when the crash occurred. Only the pilot, who is male and an East Tennessee resident, was onboard at the time of the crash.
    Virginia State Police Search and Recovery Team (SRT) dive members spent much of Friday night searching the wreckage for the pilot. This morning, the SRT brought to the scene a side-scan sonar to use for the search for the pilot. The helicopter did break apart upon impact with the water, with the bulk of the aircraft still submerged in the water. The depths of the water at the crash site ranges from approximately 25 to 40 feet. The FAA responded to the scene Saturday morning to conduct its investigation. The cause of the crash remains under investigation.(WJHL)(8-25-2012)
    UPDATE: The Virginia Highlands Airport was flying its U.S. and state flags at half-mast Saturday in memory of a missing pilot, although airport employees declined to comment on the crash of the Bell helicopter registered to the parent company of the Food City grocery stores. The pilot has been missing since the late Friday crash into South Holston Lake, though rescue crews have been searching nearly round the clock since then. According to a 2011 article in the online trade publication Aviation International News, Food City's pilot, Bill Starnes, had amassed at least 26,500 accident-free flying hours when he was recognized in November with a National Business Aviation Association Pilot Flying Safety Award, as K-VA-T's chief pilot.(Bristol Herald Courier)(8-26-2012)

  • Atlanta Motor Speedway Campgrounds are open: Atlanta Motor Speedway's unreserved campgrounds are pen as of Saturday, Aug. 25. The speedway's unreserved campgrounds are available on a first-come, first-serve basis for both RV and tent camping. Unreserved camping spots are $60 per site and can be purchased at the entrance to the campgrounds. All vehicles must have either camping credentials or a tow pass to enter any campground at AMS. Unreserved camping credentials and tow passes can be purchased at the entrance of the campground, while all reserved camping credentials and tow passes must be purchased at the ticket office. Campers are reminded that two AdvoCare 500 tickets must be presented to enter the campground. Tickets will be available for purchase at the ticket office if campers have not yet done so. A limited number of campsites in the East Turn and First Turn campgrounds remain available, which will also feature new grass for fans to enjoy during the Labor Day weekend. East Turn camping will fit RVs 20x40' for $150. First Turn camping for 20x40' RVs is $150 and 25x42' space is $175. For those looking for a luxury camping experience for the entire race weekend, Trackside Terrace spots are in limited availability and feature several great benefits. These campsites include 10 race tickets for each of the three nights of racing, 10 pit passes for each of those days, tow passes for extra vehicles, full hook-ups and a view of the entire speedway from your camper. These are also the only remaining campsites with hookups available. NASCAR night racing returns to Atlanta Motor Speedway on Labor Day weekend, Aug. 31-Sept. 2, 2012. Reserve your AdvoCare 500 tickets now. For more information, call the Atlanta Motor Speedway ticket office at (877) 9-AMS-TIX, (770) 946-4211 or visit atlantamotorspeedway.com.(AMS)(8-26-2012)

  • Candlebox performing prerace concert at Kansas: It's only fitting that with all of the changes around Kansas Speedway this summer, that a band with a hit song called "Change," perform the pre-race concert for the Hollywood Casino 400. Multi-platinum rock band Candlebox will perform at approximately 11:20 AM on Oct. 21. Candlebox released their latest album, Love Stories & Other Musings, on April 3, 2012, 21 years after the band formed in Seattle. The album evidences a newfound level of maturity for the band and at the same time, listening to it with the volume turned up reveals that the band remains filled with their youthful exuberance that marked their first go-round in the 1990s, a decade during which they ran off a string off alt-rock classics while selling north of five million albums. Love Stories & Other Musings features nine new songs, along with crisp re-recordings of five of the band's best-loved '90s hits, including the classics "Far Behind," "Cover Me," "You," and "Change," comprising a bountiful bonus for their diehard fans. Tickets for Kansas Speedway's 2012 race events are on sale now by calling 866.460.RACE (7223) or visiting kansasspeedway.com. Every season ticket comes with a Track Pass that provides you with access to the infield for the pre-race concert, driver introductions and much more! Parking is always free at Kansas Speedway and fans can bring in one 14x14x14-inch soft-sided cooler with their favorite food and beverages (Kansas Speedway).(8-26-2012)


    News from August 25, 2012

  • Hamlin wins at Bristol: #11-Denny Hamlin won the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway for his 3rd win of year and 20th career win. It is also the 200th win for the car #11, the most all time, 2 wins over the #43 car.
    #48-Johnson finished 2nd followed by #24-Gordon, #55-Vickers, #9-Ambrose, #18-Busch, #15-Bowyer, #20-Logano, #5-Kahne and #27-Menard.
    #10-Danica Patrick finished 29th after a late race accident on lap 434, Patrick was running 19th on the lead lap before the wreck.
    The points leader, #16-Biffle, struggled and finished 19, but keeps the points lead, 11 points over #48-Johnson.
    #16-Biffle, #48-Johnson and #88-Earnhardt Jr. have clinched a spot in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
    #13-Mears, who started first after qualifying was canceled due to rain, led the first 26 laps and finished 21st, a lap down.
    There were 13 cautions for 87 yellow flag laps. There were 22 lead changes among 13 drivers. The average speed was 84.402mph.
    The estimated attendence was 145,000 down from last years 156,000.
    See race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Bristol Race Results page (pdf).(8-25-2012)

  • 2012 Sprint Cup Driver Championship Points Standings:
    [after Bristol, race 24 of 36]
    1) #16-Greg Biffle [2 wins], 849, +119 over 11th
    2) #48-Jimmie Johnson [3 wins], 838, -11, +108
    3) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [1 win], 834, -15, +104
    4) #17-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 823, -26, +93
    5) #56-Martin Truex Jr. [0 wins], 797, -52, +67
    6) #15-Clint Bowyer [1 wins], 794, -55, +64
    7) #2-Brad Keselowski [3 wins], 790, -59, +60
    8) #11-Denny Hamlin [3 wins], 774, -75, +44
    9) #29-Kevin Harvick [0 wins], 767, -82, +24
    10) #14-Tony Stewart [3 wins], 746, -103, +16 over 11th
    Current wild card Chase drivers:
    WC1) #5-Kasey Kahne [2 wins, 11th in points]
    WC2) #18-Kyle Busch [1 win, 13th in points]
    (ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
    See drivers championship points standings on the Drivers Points Standings (pdf).(8-25-2012)

  • 2012 Sprint Cup Driver Chase Wild-Card Race:
    [after Bristol, race 24 of 36]
    A look at the race for the two wild-card positions for the Chase based on wins and being inside the top 20 in points.
    Driver [wins] standings, behind 10th
    first two would make the chase as wild cards:
    #5-Kasey Kahne [2 wins] 11th -16 points out of 10th
    #18-Kyle Busch [1 win] 14th -39
    eight other drivers currently in the running for the wild cards:
    #24-Jeff Gordon [1 win] 16th -55
    #39-Ryan Newman [1 win] 13th -58
    #9-Marcos Ambrose [1 win] 17th -67
    #20-Joey Logano [1 win] 18th -108
    these drivers have no wins but are in the top-20
    #99-Carl Edwards 12th -34
    #27-Paul Menard 17th -72
    #1-Jamie McMurray 19th -148
    #31-Jeff Burton 20th -169
    (ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
    The Chase: The top-10 drivers will make the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Positions 11 and 12 in the 12-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup are Wild Cards, and will go to drivers outside the top 10 with the most wins, as long as they are ranked in the top 20 in points. If multiple drivers outside the top 10 tie for wins, the tie-breaker will go to the race winner with the highest points position.
    See drivers championship points standings on the Drivers Points Standings (pdf).(8-25-2012)

  • Top-35 in Owner Points and guaranteed a starting spot at Atlanta:
    #36 remains in 35th and is now 102 points ahead of 36th, the #33 team.
    Rank) Car#-Driver/Team, owners pts, +/-
    34) #32-Schrader/FAS Lane Racing, 326 +121
    35) #36-Blaney/Baldwin, 307 +102 ahead of 36th
    these teams / drivers will need to qualify by speed:
    36) #33-Leicht/Childress-Falk, 205, -102 from the top 35
    37) #21-Bayne/Wood Bros., 181, -126
    38) #30-Stremme/Inception, 174, -133
    The teams are NOT locked in past the next race as the owners points change after each race.
    For the owner points standings, see the Owners Points Standings (pdf).(8-25-2012)

  • Race Fast Facts - Bristol
    #11-Denny Hamlin won the 52nd Annual IRWIN Tools Night Race, his 20th victory in 247 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his third victory and 12th top-10 finish in 2012.
    This is his first victory and seventh top-10 finish in 14 races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson (second) posted his 13th top-10 finish in 22 races at Bristol Motor Speedway. It is his 17th top-10 finish in 2012.
    #24-Jeff Gordon (third) posted his 22nd top-10 finish in 40 races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    #26-Josh Wise (38th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    #16-Greg Biffle leads the point standings by 11 points over Jimmie Johnson.
    This marked the 200th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win for car #11.
    The 13 caution periods were the most at Bristol since 15 on March 25, 2007.
    The 22 lead changes are tied for fifth-most in 105 all time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Bristol.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(8-25-2012)

  • Bristol Notes-n-Nuggets:
    " Denny Hamlin pulled down his 20th career win, and third this season, in his 247th race.
    " There are now four drivers, including Denny Hamlin, with a Cup-high three wins in 2012.
    " It's Denny Hamlin's first Bristol win in his 14th race -- previous best finish a 2nd in March 2009.
    " Denny Hamlin got his seventh short-track win, and first at Bristol.
    " Denny Hamlin led five times for 70 laps, including the final 39.
    " That victory was number 200 for the #11 car in the Cup Series, the most by a single car number.
    " Joe Gibbs Racing got its 98th all-time win, and sixth at Bristol.
    " It's the fifth win of 2012 for Joe Gibbs Racing.
    " Joe Gibbs Racing has won five of the last eight races at Bristol, and 14 of the last 22 on short tracks.
    " Jimmie Johnson (second) had his seventh top-five finish at Bristol, including five of the last seven races.
    " Jeff Gordon (third) grabbed his fifth top-five finish of the season, including three of the last five races.
    " Brian Vickers (fourth) has top-five finishes in both Bristol races this season, third top-five in six starts in 2012.
    " Marcos Ambrose (fifth) notched fourth straight top-10 finish of 2012, third straight top-five.
    " Greg Biffle, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. all clinched spots in the Chase.
    " Drivers 4th-10th in points can clinch Chase spots next week in Atlanta.
    (Racing Resources and Services -- Statistics Racing Recall / nascar.com)(8-25-2012)

  • Win 200 for #11: #11-Denny Hamlin's win in the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway was car #11's 200th win in the Sprint Cup Series. This win is now 2 wins ahead of the iconic #43 for all-time wins in Sprint Cup Series history for a car number. Richard Petty, who drove the #43 for most of his 200 wins, actually won 192 races running the #43 and 8 in other car numbers [#41 & #42]. The car number in third is the car #3 with 97 wins.(8-25-2012)

  • Breakdown of wins by driver in the #11:
    Cale Yarborough (55)
    Ned Jarrett (49)
    Darrell Waltrip (43)
    Denny Hamlin (20)
    Junior Johnson (11)
    Bill Elliott (6)
    Geoff Bodine (4)
    Terry Labonte (4)
    Bobby Allison (3)
    Buddy Baker (2)
    A.J. Foyt (1)
    Mario Andretti (1)
    Parnelli Jones (1).(NASCAR)(8-25-2012)

  • Expect A Few Drivers To Clinch Chase Spot At Bristol UPDATE: When a driver clinches his spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, they receive a commemorative black and yellow hat with the 2012 Chase logo emblazoned on it. So far, no one's in possession of that hat.
    Ten drivers in all have a mathematical chance at clinching a Chase spot. Seven can secure a top-10 berth in the Chase this Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway. Regardless of what any other driver does, points leader #16-Greg Biffle will clinch with a finish of 28th with no laps led, 29th with at least one lap led and 30th with the most laps led. The scenario for #17-Matt Kenseth is eighth with no laps led, ninth with at least one lap led and 10th with most laps led. #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. lands a spot in the postseason with finishes of sixth with no laps led, seventh with at least one lap led and eighth with the most laps led. Five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion #48-Jimmie Johnson will punch his Chase ticket with a victory or second-place finish while leading the most laps.
    #2-Brad Keselowski, #56-Martin Truex Jr. and #15-Clint Bowyer also can reserve spots in the Chase but are not yet in charge of the their own destinies. The magic number is 97. Any driver 97 points ahead of 11th place leaving Bristol will officially clinch a top 10 spot. Those who can clinch at least a Wild Card: Keselowski, #14-Tony Stewart, #11-Denny Hamlin, #5-Kasey Kahne and #15-Clint Bowyer. A win and Keselowski and Stewart are in. Hamlin, Kahne and Bowyer have to win on Saturday night, and get some help.(NASCAR)(8-23/25-2012)
    CLINCHED: #16-Biffle, #48-Johnson and #88-Earnhardt Jr. have clinched a spot in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.(8-25-2012)

  • Penske says Logao a candidate for the #22 ride: The owner of Penske Racing acknowledged on Saturday that Joey Logano is a candidate to drive the #22 in 2013. Roger Penske also didn't rule out expanding from two to three cars and including Sam Hornish Jr., who has been in the #22 since AJ Allmendinger was suspended and ultimately released for violating NASCAR's substance-abuse policy, in the mix for next season. Penske said he hoped to have a decision by the Sept. 16 Chase opener at Chicagoland. Sources close to the situation said Logano, who is in the final year of his contract with Joe Gibbs Racing, is the front-runner for the #22. Logano told ESPN.com recently he has two offers for 2013, and that one was from JGR. The issue at JGR is finding a full-time sponsor. "He's obviously a candidate, but there's other good people, too, that people haven't talked about," Penske said before the Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway. "We have a couple of rabbits." Penske would not expand on other potential candidates. Penske didn't rule out that Alliance Truck Parts, which sponsors Hornish's Nationwide car, could move up to Cup in 2013.(ESPN)(8-25-2012)

  • Bayne disappointed he didn't get Cup ride: #21-Trevor Bayne admitted Friday at Bristol Motor Speedway he has mixed emotions about Ricky Stenhouse Jr. being Matt Kenseth's replacement at Roush Fenway Racing because he believes they both deserve a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series ride. "At first when they said that [Stenhouse in the #17 next year] I was a little bit bummed out because I wanted them to come to me and say, 'Hey, we're gonna run you full-time in a Cup car with the fourth team' and that didn't happen," Bayne said. "But when I did find out I was running Nationwide and I thought about it, I thought that's probably a good decision to go out there and get that first full season under our belt in the series. I haven't gotten to go points racing and I think it would be good to get that under our belt before we go to that Cup level when it's gonna be even tougher to do that and get that experience." Bayne believes Stenhouse's move into the #17 Ford is a "great opportunity" for his teammate. "At the same time, I can't wait to get my opportunity in Cup," Bayne continued. "I think we could run competitively there every weekend. We do that even with the Wood Brothers part-time. But I've just got to be patient in the meantime for that." Team co-owner Jack Roush has already said he planned to field a full-time Nationwide team for Bayne in 2013. Bayne also plans to continue driving a limited Sprint Cup schedule for the Wood Brothers [#21 Ford]. Bayne said the only way he would consider a move to Penske Racing would be if Roush told him it was an option. "Being under contract, there is no way I would go talk to another team or do anything like that at this point," the 21-year-old Bayne said. "The more (Ford) teams the better, but I don't know if that changes opportunities for me or not."(RacinToday)(8-25-2012)

  • Divers, officials continue to look for pilot involved in helicopter crash: Virginia State Police Search & Recovery Team divers with the assistance of the Sullivan County, Tenn. County Sheriff's Office dive team have spent the day searching the waters of South Holston Lake on the Washington County, Va., side for the pilot of the helicopter that crashed late Friday night (August 24, 2012). The divers will continue their search and recovery efforts through the evening. At approximately 10:30 p.m. Friday, a Bell 407 helicopter, owned by Food City, crashed into the lake shortly after takeoff from a nearby residential property. The helicopter had been ferrying passengers from the Bristol Motor Speedway to the residence. The helicopter had just dropped off six passengers and taken off when the crash occurred. Only the pilot, who is male and an East Tennessee resident, was onboard at the time of the crash.
    Virginia State Police Search and Recovery Team (SRT) dive members spent much of Friday night searching the wreckage for the pilot. This morning, the SRT brought to the scene a side-scan sonar to use for the search for the pilot. The helicopter did break apart upon impact with the water, with the bulk of the aircraft still submerged in the water. The depths of the water at the crash site ranges from approximately 25 to 40 feet. The FAA responded to the scene Saturday morning to conduct its investigation. The cause of the crash remains under investigation.(WJHL)(8-25-2012)

  • Pilot only person on crashed Food City chopper: Divers and troopers remain on the scene this morning of a helicopter crash in the Washington County, Va., side of the South Holston Lake. The first 911 call came in at 10:33 p.m. Friday (August 24, 2012) about the crash. The helicopter, a Bell 407, crashed into the lake shortly after takeoff from a nearby residential property. The corporate-owned helicopter had been ferrying passengers from the Bristol Motor Speedway to the residence. The helicopter had just dropped off the passengers and taken off when the crash occurred. Only the pilot was onboard at the time of the crash. Virginia State Police Search and Recovery Team (SRT) dive members spent much of the night searching the wreckage for the pilot. This morning, the SRT is bringing to the scene a side-scan sonar to assist with the search for the pilot. The helicopter also remains in the water, upside down. Now that it's daylight, the state police will work to remove the wreckage. The depth of the water at the crash site is approximately 25 feet. The FAA is responding to the scene this morning.(WJHL)(8-25-2012)

  • The Numbers for The IRWIN Tools Night Race:
    0 - fewest cautions for a race at Bristol Motor Speedway (7/11/71)
    0 - fewest lead changes for a race (3/25/73)
    1 - fewest laps led by race winner (7/26/64 - Fred Lorenzen)
    1 - fewest on lead lap at finish (22 times, most recent 8/22/81)
    4 - number of jet dryers available for track drying during race weekend
    4 - number of races won from outside a top-25 starting spot
    5 - number of cautions in spring race
    7 - number of consecutive wins by Darrell Waltrip at BMS (1981 - 1984)
    7 - fewest cars running at finish (3/20/66)
    16 - most wins by a car owner (Junior Johnson)
    16 - most leaders (4/9/89)
    20 - most cautions for a race at BMS (three times, most recent 8/23/03)
    34 - races won from the front row (22 from the pole)
    39 - different winners at BMS in 103 Sprint Cup races
    40 - most lead changes (4/14/91)
    42 - number of cars that started the first race at Bristol in 1961
    42 - most cars running at finish (3/16/08)
    60 - minutes, the minimum amount of time it takes to dry the .533-mile track after a significant rainfall
    500 - most laps led by race winner (Cale Yarborough, 3/25/73)
    157,574 - number of fans that established the Guinness World Record for the world's largest audience wave at BMS (August 23, 2008)
    2012 Caution Update
    1 - fewest cautions this season (Fontana)
    5 - races extended beyond scheduled distance (Daytona1, Martinsville, Talladega, Darlington, Sonoma and Michigan2)
    10 - most cautions this season (Daytona1)
    123 - cautions in the first 23 races of 2012; includes 57 for accidents, 33 for debris and 13 for spins
    628 of 6,037 - laps under caution in 2012
    975.221 of 8,642.456 - miles under caution in the first 23 races.
    (Darnell Communications for SRT Motorsports and Dodge)(8-25-2012)



  • Glory Foods to sponsor Ragan at Bristol: The orange and purple colors of Glory Foods debut on David Ragan's #34 Ford Fusion this weekend as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to Bristol, Tenn. for the running of the Irwin Tools Night Race. Bristol marks the first race for Glory Foods since announcing the Race To Feeding America campaign. The Feeding America logo will adorn the decklid of the #34 Ford.NASCAR fans can visit www.RaceToFeedingAmerica.com to donate, and also win a VIP Trip to the 2013 Coca-Cola 600 in Charlotte, N.C. If Ragan, or teammate David Gilliland can make it to victory lane in October's Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Glory Foods will donate $1 Million to Feeding America. While Bristol has become famous for its unique driver introductions, Ragan won't be walking out to any new top-40 hits. Instead, Ragan, who owns a Mayberry Police Cruiser in his car collection, has selected the theme song of The Andy Griffith Show as his entrance tune.(Front Row Motorsports PR), see images of the scheme on the #34 Team Schemes page.(8-25-2012)

  • Nemechek picks up some sponsorship for Bristol: #87 NEMCO Nationwide and Cup cars of Joe Nemechek will both have associate sponsorship from AC General at Bristol Motor Speedway. AC General is an Alaskan based company that specializes in ring-wall construction for above-ground storage tanks (Nemco). See an image of the car on the #87 Team Schemes page.(8-25-2012)

  • Ford going for first repeat in 7 years: Ford drivers have won the last two Sprint Cup races - #9-Marcos Ambrose at Watkins Glen and #16-Greg Biffle at Michigan. A third straight Blue Oval victory in Saturday night's Irwin Tools Night Race would mark the first time Ford has won three straight Cup races in a single season since June 2005, when Biffle, Carl Edwards and Biffle put together three wins at Dover, Pocono and Michigan.(SPEED)(8-25-2012)

  • More Bristol Motor Speedway Notes:
    " In 1961, the year Bristol Motor Speedway opened, its two NASCAR events didn't take place in March and August as they do now, but in July and October. In '62 the races were in April and July and in '63 the spring race moved to March while the second race remained in July. As a matter of fact, the summer race stayed in July through 1975. The spring race moved to May in 1964 and back to March the following year and since then alternated between March and April every year but one (1983 when it was in May) until 2000. The first Bristol race has been contested in March every year since with the exception of 2005 when it was in April. As for the summer race, which became The Night Race when lights were installed in 1978, it actually took place in November in 1975 before it took up residence in August in 1976 where it has remained.
    " This year's IRWIN Tools Night Race is Aug. 25. Only five times in the past 52 years has the race been run on Aug. 25 - 1979 (Darrell Waltrip was the winner), 1984 (Terry Labonte), 1990 (Ernie Irvan), 2001 (Tony Stewart) and 2007 (Carl Edwards).
    " Brad Keselowski has captured the last two Sprint Cup races at BMS in a Dodge. Before Keselowski won the 2011 IRWIN Tools Night Race, the last driver to win at the World's Fastest Half-Mile in a Dodge was Kurt Busch in March of 2006. Before that one has to go all the way back to 1975 for a Dodge win when Richard Petty swept both events. The only other two drivers to win in a Dodge at BMS were David Pearson (spring 1975) and Bobby Allison (spring 1969, summer 1970).
    " The combined margin of victory for the last seven Sprint Cup events at BMS has been by less than one second.
    " In In the first Night Race at BMS, on August 26, 1978, Cale Yarborough and runner-up Benny Parsons, both driving Oldsmobiles, were the only two cars on the lead lap. Yarborough won by 16 seconds. Darrell Waltrip finished third, more than a lap down, while Dick Brooks finished fourth and Richard Petty took fifth. Other notables in the race were Richard Childress (seventh), Neil Bonnett (20th) and Bobby Allison (22nd).
    " Back in the 60s and 70s, it wasn't unusual for drivers to win races at BMS by more than a lap. The very first race, the 1961 Volunteer 500, saw Jack Smith beat Fireball Roberts by nearly three laps - even with a driver change.
    " In April of 1977, Cale Yarborough won the Southeastern 500 by more than seven laps. The last driver to win by at least one lap was Darrell Waltrip, who accomplished the feat in the 1981 Busch 500. Ricky Rudd finished second, the only car one lap down and Terry Labonte was third, the lone car two laps down.
    " None of the last 15 Sprint Cup races at BMS have been won by a driver starting outside the top 20. The last driver to win with a worse starting position than 20th was Dale Earnhardt Jr., who won the 2004 Sharpie 500 after starting from the 30th slot. Elliott Sadler owns the distinction of winning from the worst starting position at BMS when he won the 2001 Food City 500 after starting 38th.(BMS PR)(8-25-2012)


    News from August 24, 2012

  • Race Coverage of the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is scheduled for Saturday, August 25, 2012.
    Television (TV): ABC at 7:30 pm/et; NASCAR Countdown Pre-Race show at 7:00 pm/et; green flag approx 7:43pm/et
    Radio: Performance Racing Network (PRN) and Sirius XM Satellite NASCAR Radio 90
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs: on ESPN2, Sunday, August 26 at 5:30am/et; on SPEED, Wednesday, August 29 at 12:00pm/et

  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway have been made.
    Pole sitter #13-Mears chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #2-Keselowski took pit stall 22, the last pit stall on the front stretch pits.
    #16-Biffle, who starts 3rd took the 2nd pit stall behind the #13, expecting the #13 to fall off the lead lap.
    The 43rd and final pit stall was taken by #31-Burton, who starts 6th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on the Pit Stall Selection chart.(8-24-2012)

  • Bristol qualifying rained out: #13-Casey Mears will start first in the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway after qualifying was rained out and set by the rules book. The 43 drivers who made the race were from the top-35 in owners points and teams with the most race attempts. The field was then set by practice speeds from the first practice. #13-Mears was the fastest in the first practice and will start first [but is not awarded a Coors Light pole or eligible for the Shootout], followed by #2-Keselowski, #16-Biffle, #20-Logano, #43-Almirola, #31-Burton, #27-Menard, #11-Hamlin, #9-Ambrose and #18-Busch
    The go-or-go homers who made the race (8): #98-McDowell, #30-Stremme, #26-Wise, #19-Bliss, #23-Riggs, #33-Leicht, #49-Leffler and #87-Nemechek.
    The go-or-go homers who failed to qualify for the race (4): #95-Speed, #79-Bires, #91-Sorenson and #37-Yeley.
    See starting lineup on the Bristol Qualifying Page.(8-24-2012)

  • Rain at Bristol: qualifying for the Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway has been cancelled, so the rain-out qualifying procedure for all three NASCAR national series is as follows:
    If first practice is run [which it was], but qualifying is unable to take place, the starting lineup will be based on speeds from the car's fastest lap from the first practice, with top-35 cars in owner points no longer segregated from the non-top 35 cars. THe Top-35 would make thew race, then, past champions not already in per top-35 [none], then past race winners from 2011-2012 not already in by top-35 [none], then by race attempts [ties broeken by owners points position]. After the 43 drivers eligible are set, the field is set by first practice speeds. #13-Casey Mears would start first [not credited with a pole or for the Shootout]. Missing the race would be: #37-Yeley, #95-Speed, #79-Bires and #91-Sorenson.
    The Unofficial Lineup:
    1st thru 10th: #'s 13, 2, 16, 20, 43, 31, 27, 11, 9 & 18
    11th thru 20th: #'s 24, 5, 29, 78, 56, 88, 17, 38, 39 & 51
    21st thru 30th: #'s 14, 55, 15, 34, 36, 1, 99, 42, 22 & 98
    31st thru 40th: #'s 30, 26, 83, 19, 23, 47, 48, 33, 49 & 87
    41st thru 43rd: #'s 93, 32 & 10
    DNQ's: 95, 79, 37, 91.
    See the starting lineup on the Bristol Qualifying Page.(8-24-2012)

  • Happy Hour practice for the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is over, after 45 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and some notes:
    #20-Logano 122.404
    #2-Keselowski 122.154
    #38-Gilliland 121.929
    #17-Kenseth 121.921
    #18-Busch 121.883
    #13-Mears who was fastest in 1st practice was 15th fastest
    #48-Johnson continues to struggle, was 31st after being 41st in 1st practice.
    slowest: #10-Patrick 117.732 & #36-Blaney 117.906
    See speeds, best 10-lap averages and laps run on the Bristol Happy Hour practice speeds page (pdf).(8-24-2012)

  • First Friday practice for the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is over, after 120 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and some notes:
    #13-Mears 122.209
    #2-Keselowski 122.162
    #16-Biffle 122.123
    #20-Logano 121.999
    #43-Almirola 121.999
    #48-Johnson was 41st fastest
    slowest: #10-Patrick 116.722 & #32-Schrader 118.116
    notes: early in the practice, #36-Blaney slapped the wall with the right rear, but drove on.
    The first practice sets the qualifying order, with slowest out first and fastest out last. Qualifying is scheduled for 5:10pm/et on Friday and be televised on ESPN2(8-24-2012)

  • Go-or-Go Homers practice at Bristol: the position the 12 drivers who are not in the top-35 of owners points and must qualify by speed to make the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway, where they practiced in the first practice:
    #95-Speed, 28th fastest overall
    the eight drivers who would make the race if things stayed the same:
    #98-McDowell, 31st
    #79-Bires, 32nd
    #30-Stremme, 33rd
    #26-Wise, 34th
    #91-Sorenson, 36th
    #19-Bliss, 37th
    #23-Riggs, 38th
    the four drivers who would miss the race if things stayed the same:
    #37-Yeley, 40th
    #33-Leicht, 42nd
    #49-Leffler, 43rd
    #87-Nemechek, 44th of 47 drivers
    (8-24-2012)

  • NASCAR: Rear housing devices legal: NASCAR officials said mechanical devices the Hendrick Motorsports teams and other organizations in the Sprint Cup Series are using to gain a competitive advantage in the rear housing are legal -- today. "We watch it weekly because it has ramped up the last couple of months,'' series director John Darby said on Friday at Bristol Motor Speedway. "If it stays pretty level we'll probably leave it alone the rest of the year. "If there is a higher extreme somebody takes it to that could create issues we don't want to see, then we'll react to that.'' The HMS cars in May were the first this season to develop devices that allow the rear axle to turn slightly to follow the front, creating more speed particularly in the corners. "Where we're at today, right now, there is no illegal procedures going on,'' Darby said. "Obviously, there was one we found Tuesday that was questionable. But the mechanical devices, the way they're using them, there's a clear understanding of what the teams are doing.'' Darby said teams are using different methods to create a "hook and ladder fire truck effect that allows the rear axle to turn so the rear of the car follows the front.'' He said there's nothing in the current rulebook that doesn't allow that, but he didn't rule out that changing in 2013. "It's just a direct everybody has gone to maximize, optimize,'' Darby said. "Right now it's pretty level throughout the garage. If you take the most extreme to the least developed, it's not a huge difference.''(ESPN)(8-24-2012)

  • Special FarmVille scheme for Gordon UPDATE and images: #24-Jeff Gordon will run a special FarmVille / Drive to End Hunger Chevy at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. See images of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page.(8-24-2012)
    UPDATE: Zynga, the world's leading provider of social game services, is joining Drive to End Hunger with two exciting new initiatives that advance the fight against older adult hunger. For a limited time, players of Zynga's FarmVille game will be able to boost their scores and improve their harvests while helping the nearly 9 million older Americans who face the risk of hunger. FarmVille, one of the most popular social networking games on Facebook, gives players the opportunity to build and grow their own virtual farms, while connecting with friends and family. Players advance by successfully growing and harvesting crops and raising livestock. Beginning today through Sept. 7, FarmVille players can purchase exclusive, limited edition Drive to End Hunger in-game virtual goods to enhance their farming experience while giving back. Items include:
    " A Drive to End Hunger Tractor driven by a classic FarmVille pig that imagines he is racing toward the checkered flag like four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion, Jeff Gordon.
    " A Drive to End Hunger Grocery Tree that magically grows bountiful bags of food for farmers and their customers.
    Players will be able to keep and use the exclusive Drive to End Hunger tractor and grocery tree after the promotion ends September 7. Zynga and Facebook will donate all proceeds from the sale of these in-game virtual goods to AARP Foundation in support of Drive to End Hunger. "I love driving the #24 Chevrolet, but the Drive to End Hunger tractor in FarmVille seems like a fun ride, too," said Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet. "It's always great when someone can have fun while helping out people in need."
    "We are thrilled to join Drive to End Hunger and Jeff Gordon to bring the issue of hunger among older adults to FarmVille players," said Ken Weber, executive director of Zynga.org. "Through Zynga.org, Zynga players have contributed millions of dollars through their favorite games to benefit organizations working to help those in need."
    Zynga is also working with AARP on the fight against older adult hunger by engaging as a pass-through sponsor of Gordon and the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevy for Hendrick Motorsports. This weekend in Bristol, FarmVille characters will be featured on the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevy.
    The collaboration with Zynga marks another NASCAR first for Drive to End Hunger, which became the sport's first primary cause-based sponsorship beginning in the 2011 season. Since AARP and AARP Foundation launched Drive to End Hunger, the initiative has donated more than 12.9 million meals and driven corporate and individual donor commitments with an expected value of $16.9 million.(Hendrick Motorsports), see images of the scheme/car on the #24 Team Schemes page.(8-24-2012)

  • Rusty to be honored on #2 Dodge UPDATE: The featured tag line on the rear bumper of the #2 Miller Lite Dodge of Brad Keselowski this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway will read "Inductee Rusty Wallace." This is a tribute to Wallace's 2013 induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. During his time in the #2 Miller-sponsored car, the former Penske Racing driver accumulated 37 wins, 145 top-five finishes, 252 top-10 results, while leading a total of 15,012 laps.(Penske Racing)(8-22-2012)
    UPDATE: Penske Racing and Miller Lite announced they will honor Rusty Wallace's 2013 induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame with a special, throwback paint scheme on the #2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger in Saturday night's Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway. The paint scheme will be an exact replica of the scheme Rusty used to sweep both races at BMS in the 2000 NASCAR Cup Series season, including his landmark 50th career victory in the March 26 Food City 500. Brad Keselowski, current driver of the #2 Miller Lite Dodge, will attempt to continue the tradition and pull off the same season sweep this weekend. The #2 Miller-sponsored car from Penske Racing has scored a total of 10 wins at BMS, with seven of those wins coming with Wallace in the seat. Wallace tallied 37 NSCS victories as driver of the #2 car that he made famous. Wallace is part of the five-member class that will receive induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame next May. The Hall chose BMS  site of nine of the 55 wins by Wallace during his illustrious career  as the perfect venue to honor the career of the 1989 NSCS champion. The career totals for Wallace in the Miller-sponsored car at the "World's Fastest Half-Mile" are spectacular. In 30 Bristol starts he garnered seven wins, 16 top-five finishes and 21 top-10s. In the iconic #2, Wallace led 3,404 laps at the track. His first win in the #2 came on April 14, 1991. Those stats are part of an impressive legacy of the Penske Racing #2 car at BMS. In 43 starts the #2 car has picked up 10 wins, 20 top-five finishes, 28 top-10s and has led a total of 4,075 laps. "Being elected to the NASCAR Hall of Fame is such an enormous honor," said Wallace. "This sport has done so much for me and I hope that I can keep giving back to it for many years to come. I couldn't think of a better place to be honored for my induction than Bristol Motor Speedway. I'm very proud of my record there; it's such a special venue where everyone wants to win."(Penske Racing), see an image of the scheme on the #2 Team Schemes page.(8-24-2012)

  • Edwards and Shell? a bit of speculation that bears watching in the next few weeks concerns Carl Edwards. There is one unconfirmed report that Ford executives -- who remember played a key financial role in keeping Edwards from jumping to Toyota last summer -- may want to put Edwards in a Shell-Pennzoil sponsored car in 2013. How that might play out is unclear, since Shell-Pennzoil is a Roger Penske sponsor. However Penske has been dragging his feet on picking a new driver for that team for next season, letting veteran Sam Hornish fill out the time for departed AJ Allmendinger. And Penske says the ultimate call on that driver would be Shell-Pennzoil officials. Penske would like to bring Hornish back to the Cup tour next season, as part of a three-car operation, if he can resolve the Shell-Pennzoil situation. Joey Logano is figured to be angling for the Penske ride. (Head-to-head the past five weeks, Hornish has averaged a 14.8 finish, Logano 24.6.)(mikemulhern.net)(8-24-2012)

  • #27 team and Menard penalized UPDATE 2 - Appeal: NASCAR could come down hard on the #27 Richard Childress Racing team after discovering irregularities with the frame rails on the car driven by Paul Menard last weekend at Michigan International Speedway. Menard's car was taken to the Research and Development Center in Concord, N.C. after finishing ninth in the Pure Michigan 400 Sunday (FOXSports).(8-22-2012)
    UPDATE: NASCAR has issued penalties, suspensions and fines to the #27 team in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series as a result of rules infractions discovered this week during post-race inspection at the NASCAR Research and Development Center following last Sunday's race at Michigan International Speedway.
    The #27 team was found to be in violation of Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4K (race equipment that has been previously certified or previously approved by NASCAR for use in an event, pursuant to sub-section 8-12, has been altered, modified, repaired or changed in any manner. Intentionally modifying frame rails for the purpose of deceiving NASCAR's inspection gauges) of the 2012 NASCAR Rule Book.
    As a result, crew chief Slugger Labbe has been fined $100,000, suspended from NASCAR until Oct. 3 and placed on probation until Dec. 31. Car chief Craig Smokstad has been suspended from NASCAR until Oct. 3 and placed on probation until Dec. 31, while crew member Grant Hutchens has also been suspended from NASCAR until Oct. 3 and placed on probation until Dec. 31. Driver Paul Menard and owner Richard Childress have been penalized with the loss of 25 championship driver and owner points, respectively.(NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications)(8-22-2012)
    APPEAL: "We're going to appeal it," Childress told FOXSports.com "That's all I'm going to say right now." If RCR appeals, Labbe will be allowed to continue his crew chief duties this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway.(8-22-2012)
    UPDATE2: Richard Childress Racing is appealing the penalties NASCAR levied against Paul Menard's race team this week. Crew chief Slugger Labbe is at Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday working on the #27 Chevy. All sanctions are on hold during the appeal process. Meanwhile, an RCR spokesman also confirmed that Gil Martin is back as crew chief for Kevin Harvick. Martin worked with Harvick for three seasons, but was replaced by Shane Wilson this year.(Associated Press)(8-24-2012)

  • Keselowski says Hendrick teams may be bending rules UPDATE: #2-Brad Keselowski believes Penske Racing's refusal to bend the rules contributed to him not being able to challenge #48-Jimmie Johnson for the lead Sunday Michigan. Johnson was leading Keselowski with six laps remaining when his Hendrick Motorsports engine blew. #16-Greg Biffle won the race and Keselowski finished second. During the race, Keselowski made reference to Hendrick's "tricks" with their cars. Hendrick's Kasey Kahne and Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished third and fourth, respectively. The Hendrick cars appear to have different rear suspension setups than other cars, especially at intermediate tracks such as Michigan, Indianapolis and Pocono. "There's part and pieces on the car that are moving after inspection that makes the cars more competitive," Keselowski said after the race. "Some guys have it, some don't. There's a question as to the interpretation of the rule. Penske Racing errs on the safe side because we don't want to be the guys that get the big penalty." Keselowski said Penske will need to re-evaluate its setups. "As a group at Penske Racing, we have not felt comfortable enough to risk that name and reputation that Roger has over those parts and pieces. Others have, which is their prerogative," Keselowski said. "I'm not going to slam it. But it's living in a gray area. & We have to make a re-evaluation of that internally to decide if that's the right way to go."(Sporting News)(8-20-2012)
    UPDATE: #2-Brad Keselowski stressed Thursday night that he wasn't accusing Hendrick Motorsports of cheating with his comments last week at Michigan International Speedway. Keselowski said last week that the some teams were using some "tricks" with the rear suspensions on their cars and working within a gray area of the NASCAR rulebook. He said his Penske Racing team has been reluctant to push the envelope in such areas over fear of getting caught cheating. Keselowski said he took great care not to mention Hendrick Motorsports by name last week and has spent the last week on Twitter trying to clarify any misunderstandings. Other competitors in recent weeks have alluded to an advantage Hendrick teams may have with the way they are setting up the rear of their cars. Keselowski talked to the media Thursday night during an unveiling of a retro paint scheme to honor former Penske driver Rusty Wallace's 50th career victory. Keselowski insisted that he wasn't accusing anyone of cheating. "I didn't appreciate how those words were twisted into calling out a specific team," Keselowski said. "I made it a point to not call out a specific team and I think I said in a sense, 'there is a half-dozen to a dozen cars that are running those things,' and with the exception of maybe the TV broadcast I hadn't pointed out which ones they were."(Sporting News)(8-24-2012)

  • 'Wild Card' Opportunities Fading Fast: With the regular season dwindling down to a precious few races, the Chase "Wild Card" race literally has become a game of musical chairs. Six winners into two seats obviously won't go. And that doesn't take into consideration four more drivers ranked 11th through 20th able to win their way into post-season racing. #5-Kasey Kahne and #39-Ryan Newman retained the provisional "Wild Cards" in Michigan. #18-Kyle Busch, #24-Jeff Gordon, #9-Marcos Ambrose and #20-Joey Logano must wait for another day  or in the case of Bristol, night  to oust their rivals. Hope remains for non-winners #99-Carl Edwards, #27-Paul Menard, #1-Jamie McMurray and #31-Jeff Burton.
    Kahne holds the best cards: Two victories to his challengers' one or zero. He's also only 33 points out of the top 10 and the possibility of entering the Chase with at least six bonus points. Bristol isn't quite a get-it-done-or-else affair but it's close  especially for drivers who have feasted at the 0.533-mile concrete-surfaced oval in past years. That would be Busch and Gordon, five-time winners, and Edwards, who counts a pair of victories. Busch has won four of the last seven Bristol races, including a sweep of both events in 2009. He has the top Driver Rating (102.3) among the contenders and the most laps led (1,375). Busch is one of three short-track winners in 2012, in May at Richmond. The past few races have been on-again, off-again affairs with Busch: second at Indianapolis, 33rd at Pocono, seventh at Watkins Glen and 13th at Michigan. With track changes expected to make track position and pit selection crucial, Gordon's ability to qualify is an asset. The four-time champion's average start (8.3) is best in the field and his Driver Rating (99.8) trails only Busch and Matt Kenseth. Gordon's last Bristol victory came in 2002.(NASCAR)(8-24-2012)

  • Johnson 21 laps to 1,000: With 21 more laps led, #48-Jimmie Johnson will reach the 1,000 laps-led mark for the sixth consecutive year. Only four drivers have ever led 1,000 laps in six or more consecutive years: Richard Petty (12 straight years), Cale Yarborough (eight), Darrell Waltrip (seven) and Dale Earnhardt (seven)(Lowe's Racing)(8-24-2012)

  • A Yankees Lifer in NASCAR: With 10 championships and 206 victories in 29 seasons of racing, Hendrick Motorsports is sometimes called the Yankees of NASCAR. And now that Hendrick has a Yankees lifer on its staff, it would be hard to argue the point. For those who did not notice, that was Gene Monahan standing alongside team members at the finish line as Jimmie Johnson and his #48 crew celebrated their Sprint Cup victory July 29 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Yes, Monahan knelt down and kissed those bricks with everyone else as part of the traditional victory celebration there. This is what Monahan, 67, had in mind when he retired as the head trainer of the Yankees last fall after 49 years with the organization. A lifelong racing fan going back to his days growing up in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Monahan moved from his two-bedroom condominium in Hackensack, N.J., to a 3,300-square-foot house near a lake in Mooresville, N.C., last November to be close to most of the teams that compete in NASCAR. Appropriately enough, he became a consultant for Hendrick. Monahan works about 15 hours a week for Hendrick, serving as an athletic trainer for the 45 or so pit crew members employed by the race team. "Why a guy like Gene?" said Andy Papathanassiou, a Hendrick director who oversees the recruiting, development and training of pit crews. "Because as we strive to keep these crews performing at the top level of their game in the pit stop world, injury and recovery is a big part of that equation. And that's where someone like Gene, with his expertise and background and his enthusiasm for what he does, is invaluable." It was a longtime friend, Jay Frye, a former vice president and general manager of the Red Bull race team who became a consultant with Hendrick in January, who suggested Monahan to Hendrick officials. "I always felt there was a need for injury prevention and training, basically the same thing any other professional sports franchise does," Frye said. "There was always an open invitation from me to him, if he retired and moved down here, we would find something for him to do." Monahan began working with Hendrick's pit crews in April. Although he does not work with drivers, he has become friendly with Johnson, an occasional visitor at Yankee Stadium over the years. Monahan said Johnson reminded him of Derek Jeter.(New York Times)(8-24-2012)

  • SealWrap returns to sponsor Blaney at Bristol: SealWrap Repair Tape, based in Indianapolis, will back #36-Dave Blaney this weekend at Bristol and at two more events [Chicago and New Hampshire] throughout the season. SealWrap Repair Tape is designed for use in automotive repair, plumbing and electrical. It fixes and protects leaks or penetration from environmental elements. It is great for all those minor, do-it-yourself jobs around the house and garage. For more information, visit www.sealwrap.com. Indiana Wholesale Offices will join SealWrap on the #36 Chevy this weekend. Indiana Wholesale Offices hosts wholesale car dealers in the state of Indiana. This weekend will mark the 13th partnership of TBR and TMone. TMone , a provider of domestic business process services (BPO) and customer relationship management (CRM) outsourcing, will be an associate sponsor on the #36.(TBR)(8-24-2012)

  • IRWIN Tools Set to Honor America's Tradesmen at Bristol and Beyond: With the IRWIN Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway (BMS) just days away, IRWIN Tools has numerous initiatives planned across the country to celebrate tradesmen's skill and contributions, kicking off with a salute to "America's Real Working Hands" at NASCAR's most popular event, and culminating with the second annual National Tradesmen Day on Sept. 21. Throughout race weekend, IRWIN and BMS officials will build awareness for National Tradesmen Day, which is set for Friday, Sept. 21, 2012. In an exclusive opportunity, 300 professional tradesmen from across the country will serve as the IRWIN Tools Night Race Grand Marshals. At the base of the track's turn four, these individuals will give drivers the command to "start your engines." As a special tribute, IRWIN will honor the 23 "Tradesmen of the Track" BMS Operations Team in several ways. More info about the Tradesmen of the Track at nationaltradesmenday.com.(BMS)(8-24-2012)

  • TDOT sending 'HELP' for race weekend Bristol traffic: The Tennessee Department of Transportation will send special "HELP" to the Tri-Cities this weekend to assist with the heavy traffic expected in conjunction with NASCAR events at Bristol Motor Speedway. Two lime-yellow HELP trucks from Knoxville will patrol the area to assist with incidents to keep traffic moving. The trucks are four-wheel drive and equipped with push bumpers, top-mounted arrow boards, emergency work lights, air compressors, and others tools. Operators can perform a variety of functions from clearing a stalled car off the roadway to changing a flat tire. TDOT maintenance units will be posted throughout the region to assist with any other issues and portable message signs will warn drivers of any possible delays.(Bristol Herald Courier)(8-24-2012)

  • Girl Scouts hosting Bristol Motor Speedway Overnight: The Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians will host Bristol Motor Speedway Overnight, an event celebrating the 100th anniversary of the organization. The event, which has an overnight component, will last from 4 p.m. Saturday until 8 a.m. Sunday. More than 500 are expected to attend. This family-friendly event is open to all members of the community. It will begin with registration at 4 p.m. in the adjacent Earhart Campground. Next, the BMS gates will open at 5 p.m. From 5-6:30 p.m., a hot dog meal will be served and cost is included in the ticket price. From 6:30-7 p.m., the council will hold an opening ceremony and will then move on to activities/games from 7-9 p.m. Finally, a movie will be shown inside the speedway from 9-11 p.m. At 11 p.m., overnight participants will head to Earhart Campground for a campout, or day guests will head home. Activities inside the speedway include crafts, ride-alongs on the track, photo opportunities in Victory Lane, tours of the luxury suites, relay races, face-painting, games and more. Pre-registration is requested and available online at girlscoutcsa.org/events/227. Tickets are $10 via pre-registration and $15 at the gate for the day-only package. Tickets are $15 via pre-registration, $20 at the gate for the overnight package.(Bristol Herald Courier)(8-24-2012)

  • New York City fire truck on display through race weekend: A fire truck used by New York City firefighters who lost their lives in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks will be on display through race weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway. FDNY Rescue 5 will be on display for Food City Race Night Thursday in downtown Bristol, will lead that night's transporter parade, will be used during pre-race activities and be on display at BMS. It is part of the REMEMBRANCE RESCUE PROJECT, an educational nonprofit effort that allows people, especially youngsters, to see, touch and learn from this piece of American history and remember the day when thousands of lives were lost. The project is raffling off the Ultimate Bristol Race Experience with proceeds benefiting the project. Tickets can be purchased at www.wepay.com/stores/therrp or visit the rescue during the race.(Bristol Herald Courier)(8-24-2012)

  • Daytona board gives thumbs up to Speedway plans: The Speedway's proposed sports and entertainment complex project cleared another key hurdle Thursday night. The city's Planning Board unanimously approved a rezoning measure that's needed for Daytona International Speedway and its parent company to push ahead with plans to dramatically improve the track facilities and add new hotels, restaurants, shops, movie theaters and nightclubs. The board's nod of approval Thursday was for 483 acres around the Speedway, a thumbs up that comes just a few weeks after board members OK'd a similar measure for 180 acres of International Speedway Corporation land just north of the track on the other side of International Speedway Boulevard. If city commissioners agree in a series of meetings this fall with the requests to rezone the full 663 acres on both sides of the bustling thoroughfare from major sports district to planned master development, the Speedway will be able to chase its dream for the sprawling complex. If the Speedway is able to move ahead with its plans over the next few decades, it will assure the track a spot on the top of the heap. The planned master development rezoning for both properties would allow the Speedway to build up to 2 million square feet of shops, restaurants and nightclubs; up to 1,785 hotel rooms; movie theaters with a combined maximum 5,000 seats; up to 1,600 multi-family residential units and 950,000 square feet of industrial uses. If it's legalized in Florida, the Speedway wants to add casino gambling on the two sites straddling International Speedway Boulevard. The Speedway also has a list of improvements it would like to make around the track, including adding new metal panel screening to the exterior of the grandstands, five new track entrances with sponsors such as Pepsi that would have vendors inside the track, thousands of additional seats for fans and elevators. The Speedway is also looking at extending the pedestrian bridge over International Speedway Boulevard so it connects more directly with the track and adding hotels, shops and restaurants on the east, west and south sides of the track.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(8-24-2012)


    News from August 23, 2012

  • NASCAR D-Day 60th Anniversary Show Car Returns to the National D-Day Memorial: The National D-Day Memorial received some very special guests last Friday: three staff members from the Bank of America motorsports team transported the MBNA show car that was created in honor of the 60th Anniversary of D-Day and the MBNA 400 "A SALUTE TO HEROES" race at Dover International Speedway on June 6, 2004. The car came for a visit shortly after that race, but the visit was different & the car will now reside in Bedford, VA. Bank of America has agreed to donate the car to the Foundation so that it can be displayed at special events at the Memorial, in the community and the greater NASCAR audience. Bearing a distinct military and D-Day theme with the words "We will accept nothing less than full victory," the car also sports the Memorial's logo on both rear quarter panels. This is an accurate replica of the #18 car Bobby Labonte drove for Joe Gibbs Racing during the Dover race.
    Jeffrey R. Fulgham, the Foundation's Vice-President for Finance and Development said "This is a very exciting day for all of us. The Foundation played a significant role in the 60th anniversary race and was instrumental in helping to develop the paint scheme for this car. There are many opportunities to use the car in promoting the Memorial throughout the region. We extend our sincere gratitude to the great team at Bank of America Motorsports for their support and commitment to the Memorial. For more information about the National D-Day Memorial, and its mission and programs, please visit www.dday.org.(8-23-2012)

  • Bristol Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will run a slightly different tire set-up than those in the NASCAR Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series at Bristol this weekend . . . while teams in all three series will run the same right-side tire code, Sprint Cup teams will run their own left-side code . . . since the track surface at Bristol was modified after the NASCAR race weekend in March, Goodyear held a tire test at the track on June 12-13 . . . teams and drivers participating in that test were the #14 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet with Tony Stewart, #15 Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota with Clint Bowyer and #31 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet with Jeff Burton . . . this right-side tire code (D-4526) is the same one Cup teams ran at Bristol in March . . . this left-side tire code is different from the one run in March, but has been run by Cup teams at Richmond over the last two seasons . . . it features both compound and construction changes from what was at Bristol in March, and is designed to give the cars more grip . . . unlike on most NASCAR ovals one mile or less in length, on which teams generally do not run inner liners in their tires, teams are required to run liners in their right-side tires only at Bristol . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire. See full notes, tire codes, pressures on the Bristol Race Info page.(8-23-2012)

  • RPM makes crew changes: Richard Petty Motorsports made changes to its two pit crews on Monday in preparation for this weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway. "We're trying to move things around to improve the performance on both teams," says Sammy Johns, director of operations for RPM. RPM swapped the rear tire combination of changer Justin Fieldler and carrier Eric Wallace from Marcos Ambrose's team with Aric Almirola's rear tire changer Kyle Power and rear tire carrier Blake Haugland. The jackmen positions were also exchanged. Rodney Fetters will now jack Almirola's #43 Ford while Kevin Wing is the jackman for Ambrose and the #9 Stanley team.(FoxSports)(8-23-2012)

  • White scheme back for Johnson at Bristol: Jimmie Johnson will pilot the #48 Lowe's Dover White Chevry at Bristol Motor Speedway. Johnson raced the scheme at Kentucky in June. The color was used by Chevrolet for one model year  1969. The same color was used by Chevrolet from 1971 to 1978 but under the name "Antique White."(Lowe's Racing), see images of the scheme on the #48 Team Schemes page.(8-23-2012)

  • Drivers with the most points in the last five races:
    #2-Brad Keselowski, 203
    #5-Kasey Kahne, 194
    #16-Greg Biffle, 191
    #15-Clint Bowyer, 185
    #56-Martin Truex Jr., 179 (8-23-2012)

  • Outback returns to the #39 car: Award-winning Outback Steakhouse, with 750 stores nationwide, is the primary sponsor of SHR's #39 Chevy and Ryan Newman this weekend at Bristol. This will be Outback's second race as the team's primary sponsor for Newman. In their first outing together at Martinsville April 1, Newman and Outback went to victory lane. In addition to Outback Steakhouse sponsoring the #39 Chevy, the company will also be doing something special for fans attending the Bristol race. Outback will be placing car flags in each of the approximately 160,000 seats at Bristol Motor Speedway. Attached to each flag will be a $10 coupon good at any Outback Steakhouse restaurant. There will also be instructions for the fans to wave their flags when the race goes green and during each "green flag restart" in support of "Bloomin' Mondays." All season long, when Newman finishes in the top-10, fans get a free Bloomin' Onion at Outback Steakhouse on the Monday immediately following the race. All they have to do is mention Newman's top-10 (SHR). See images of the #39 Outback scheme on the #39 Team Schemes page.(8-23-2012)

  • Expect A Few Drivers To Clinch Chase Spot At Bristol: When a driver clinches his spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, they receive a commemorative black and yellow hat with the 2012 Chase logo emblazoned on it. So far, no one's in possession of that hat.
    Ten drivers in all have a mathematical chance at clinching a Chase spot. Seven can secure a top-10 berth in the Chase this Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway. Regardless of what any other driver does, points leader #16-Greg Biffle will clinch with a finish of 28th with no laps led, 29th with at least one lap led and 30th with the most laps led. The scenario for #17-Matt Kenseth is eighth with no laps led, ninth with at least one lap led and 10th with most laps led. #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. lands a spot in the postseason with finishes of sixth with no laps led, seventh with at least one lap led and eighth with the most laps led. Five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion #48-Jimmie Johnson will punch his Chase ticket with a victory or second-place finish while leading the most laps.
    #2-Brad Keselowski, #56-Martin Truex Jr. and #15-Clint Bowyer also can reserve spots in the Chase but are not yet in charge of the their own destinies. The magic number is 97. Any driver 97 points ahead of 11th place leaving Bristol will officially clinch a top 10 spot. Those who can clinch at least a Wild Card: Keselowski, #14-Tony Stewart, #11-Denny Hamlin, #5-Kasey Kahne and #15-Clint Bowyer. A win and Keselowski and Stewart are in. Hamlin, Kahne and Bowyer have to win on Saturday night, and get some help.(NASCAR)(8-23-2012)

  • Front Row Motorsports Among America's Fastest Growing Companies: Front Row Motorsports (FRM), which fields the #26, #34 and #38 Fords in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series was named to Inc. Magazine's list of the 5,000 fastest growing privately held companies in the United States. FRM earned a rank of No. 800 on the list. This marks the first time a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team has made the Inc. 5000 list. Front Row Motorsports has welcomed twelve new primary sponsors this season: Glory Foods, ModSpace, Maximum Human Performance, Scorpion Coatings, Barrett-Jackson, House-Autry Mills, Big Machine Label Group, Classic Media (Where's Waldo), Green1 Performance, Peanut Patch, 1-800LoanMart, and U.S. Shredder and Castings Group. Five of those twelve partnerships have turned into multi-race programs. The team's sponsorship portfolio is representative of nearly $172 billion of the U.S. economy. "Our team is focused on constant improvement both on the racetrack and in the marketplace" said team General Manager, Jerry Freeze, who has been with FRM since 2009. "Being named to the Inc. 5000 is certainly a victory for us off the track and shows that we are capable of winning in corporate America. We're an interesting case study to look at  we've raced at least two teams full-time in the Sprint Cup Series since 2009. We're a team that came into the sport right as the economy started to take a turn for the worse. We've weathered the storm, so to speak. Being named to the Inc. 5000 is a nice way to be recognized for our hard work and resiliency" said Freeze. The team's driver lineup currently includes #38-David Gilliland, #34-David Ragan and #26-Josh Wise.(FRM)(8-23-2012)


    News from August 22, 2012

  • #27 team and Menard penalized UPDATE: NASCAR could come down hard on the #27 Richard Childress Racing team after discovering irregularities with the frame rails on the car driven by Paul Menard last weekend at Michigan International Speedway. Menard's car was taken to the Research and Development Center in Concord, N.C. after finishing ninth in the Pure Michigan 400 Sunday (FOXSports).(8-22-2012)
    UPDATE: NASCAR has issued penalties, suspensions and fines to the #27 team in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series as a result of rules infractions discovered this week during post-race inspection at the NASCAR Research and Development Center following last Sunday's race at Michigan International Speedway.
    The #27 team was found to be in violation of Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4K (race equipment that has been previously certified or previously approved by NASCAR for use in an event, pursuant to sub-section 8-12, has been altered, modified, repaired or changed in any manner. Intentionally modifying frame rails for the purpose of deceiving NASCAR's inspection gauges) of the 2012 NASCAR Rule Book.
    As a result, crew chief Slugger Labbe has been fined $100,000, suspended from NASCAR until Oct. 3 and placed on probation until Dec. 31. Car chief Craig Smokstad has been suspended from NASCAR until Oct. 3 and placed on probation until Dec. 31, while crew member Grant Hutchens has also been suspended from NASCAR until Oct. 3 and placed on probation until Dec. 31. Driver Paul Menard and owner Richard Childress have been penalized with the loss of 25 championship driver and owner points, respectively.(NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications )(8-2-2012)

  • Goodyear tire testing at Kansas August 28-29: Final preparations of the Kansas Speedway oval are being done ahead of next week's Goodyear tire test on Aug. 28-29. Drivers scheduled to participate are #2-Brad Keselowski, #9-Marcos Ambrose, #17-Matt Kenseth, #20-Joey Logano, #27-Paul Menard, #42-Juan Pablo Montoya, #55-Mark Martin, #78-Regan Smith and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. Testing dates, track schedule and drivers/teams are subject to change due to weather or other circumstances.
    The test is scheduled to run from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm each day and will be open to the public and free of charge. Fans are asked to enter at Michigan Dr. off of Speedway Blvd. Due to another event setting up at Kansas Speedway, fans will only be able to enter at Gate D (closest to Turn 1) and sit in sections 169 and 171. Parking will be available in lots 5 and 6. Parking lots and gates will open at 8:30 AM. Sprint FanWalk will not be open during the test days.(Kansas Speedway)(8-22-2012)

  • Junior Johnson's house auctioned off: A Lewisville woman who has deep roots in the North Carolina Christmas tree industry was the winning bidder for Junior Johnson's mansion and farm situated just north of the Iredell County line. Loretta Sides Shore, who owns Shore's Nursery, said Monday that she was the buyer of the house and 150-acre farm at the Aug. 7 auction. The identity of the buyer had been kept confidential. The winning bid was $2.3 million and the sale is scheduled to close this week. Shore's Nursery grows Fraser firs on more than a dozen farms it owns or leases in the Laurel Springs and Sparta areas of Alleghany County. Shore said she and her husband plan to make minor changes to Johnson's former home before moving in. The house was a dream home for Johnson, taking two years to build under his scrutiny. The black rails of the cattle fencing are a landmark on the north side of U.S. 421, just west of Interstate 77. Johnson, 81, raised cattle on the farm, but said his health issues meant he could no longer take care of the property. He and his wife moved to the exclusive Quail Hollow neighborhood in Charlotte. Johnson initially listed the house for $6 million and the price was dropped to just less than $5 million. When it didn't sell, Johnson decided to auction it.( Statesville Record & Landmark )(8-22-2012)

  • Rusty to be honored on #2 Dodge: The featured tag line on the rear bumper of the #2 Miller Lite Dodge of Brad Keselowski this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway will read "Inductee Rusty Wallace." This is a tribute to Wallace's 2013 induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. During his time in the #2 Miller-sponsored car, the former Penske Racing driver accumulated 37 wins, 145 top-five finishes, 252 top-10 results, while leading a total of 15,012 laps.(Penske Racing)(8-22-2012)

  • Different CAT scheme at Bristol: The #31 Caterpillar Chevy of Jeff Burton will be adorned with the colors of CAT Global Mining this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway (RCR), see image of the scheme on the #31 Team Scheme page.(8-22-2012)

  • Rheem returns to the #29: Rheem will adorn the #29 Chevy for the seventh of 10 scheduled races during the 2012 season this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway. Rheem is in its 86th year of operation, the company manufactures a full-line of eco-friendly, technologically advanced residential and commercial heating and cooling systems. Rheem is the official heating, cooling and water heating supplier to Richard Childress Racing (RCR), see images of the scheme on the #29 Team Schemes page.(8-22-2012)

  • Bristol TV coverage affected in some markets:
    NASCAR fans in six affected markets will be able to watch ABC's telecast of Saturday night's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway on alternate channels through arrangements made by the local ABC affiliates. The ABC affiliates in the six markets will be airing NFL preseason games Saturday night rather than the NASCAR race but with the alternate channels in each market, the race telecast will still be available nationwide. ABC's coverage begins with NASCAR Countdown at 7:00pm/et.
    In four of the affected markets, the race telecast will air on ESPN, including Buffalo, Tulsa, Weslaco, Tex., and Quincy, Ill.
    In Detroit, ABC affiliate WXYZ-TV will move the race telecast to its digital tier 2 channel and then join the race in progress when the Detroit Lions preseason game ends.
    In Rochester, N.Y., ABC affiliate WHAM-TV will move the race telecast to its digital tier 2 channel.
    ABC affiliates in Little Rock, Ark., Corpus Christi, Tex., and Omaha, Neb., will pre-empt NASCAR Countdown at 7:00pm/et for local news but will join the ABC telecast at 7:30pm/et. The race's green flag is scheduled for 7:43 pm/et.(ESPN)(8-22-2012)

  • Gordon unhappy with Earnhardt, Jr. UPDATE: The Pure Michigan 400 had some shocking moments Sunday, including a verbal feud between Hendrick Motorsports teammates #24-Jeff Gordon and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. "Tell the f------ 88 he can thank me later for not wrecking him," Gordon said on his radio during the race. "That was f------ stupid." Earnhardt had moved in front of Gordon midway through the race with a pass Gordon felt was a little risky. Team owner Rick Hendrick sided with Earnhardt: "Man, you didn't do anything. Just drive that thing to the front." Earnhardt finished fourth. Gordon finished a disappointing 28th after an engine failure, but later talked about the incident in the garage. "He took me four-wide, then slid up in front of me in Turn 2," Gordon said of Earnhardt's pass. "I had to check up and it could have wrecked all of us. It wasn't the smartest thing to do, especially to a teammate. But he chose to do it and it all worked out. I don't care who does it, I'm going to show my displeasure if they do something like that."(ESPN)(8-20-2012)
    UPDATE: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. has no regrets about how he drove against #24-Jeff Gordon on a restart Sunday at Michigan International Speedway, but NASCAR's most popular driver laments how radio chatter turned a difference of opinion between the Hendrick Motorsports teammates into a firestorm. "I personally carried on a little bit on the radio about it; just curious about it," Earnhardt told USA TODAY Sports during a Tuesday interview at Hendrick Motorsports. "In retrospect, to try not to let ESPN or anybody like that make a big deal out of it, I should have not said anything at all so there wouldn't be any footage worth editing. But truth be told, the fact that we were teammates allowed that conversation to happen. If it was Brad Keselowski and me, I would have never known he was mad. I would have never cared that another driver was upset with me because for the most part what happened between me and Jeff happens dozens of times in one race, but the drivers never play it out like me and Jeff did because the radio conversations and lines of communication aren't there." Earnhardt said he and Gordon are "fine" with each other and sorted it out with a text exchange after Sunday's Pure Michigan 400, and they met again at Hendrick's campus Tuesday for the team's weekly debriefing of drivers and crew chiefs.(USA Today)(8-22-2012)

  • NASCAR in SI Kids book: Sports Illustrated Kids celebrates NASCAR in its new book, Sports Illustrated Kids' BIG Book of Why: Sports Edition, available in stores now. BIG Book of Why: Sports Edition answers key questions including the following:
    "Why do NASCAR drivers wear long-sleeve suits when they drive?"
    "Why do drivers need to make pit stops during NASCAR races?"
    "Why do they wave a checkered flag at auto races?"
    BIG Book of Why: Sports Edition provides in-depth explanations on the science, history and origin of NASCAR, with photos and illustrations that help make the information easy to digest. For more information, please visit sikids.com/bigbookofwhysports.(SI Kids)(8-22-2012)

  • Earnhardt Jr. wins vote to be on video game cover: The face of NASCAR's new video game also happens to be the face of NASCAR. But that might not be the primary reason that Dale Earnhardt Jr. is a natural choice as the cover star of NASCAR The Game: Inside Line. "Even though I drive cars for a living, it's fun to do it with a reset button," Earnhardt told USA TODAY Sports about his avid interest in video gaming. "It's definitely not foreign to me, and you can see me just as easily picking up a controller and playing. It's comfortable and something I'll be able to speak intelligently about if I was in a room full of gamers. I think it's a good fit." Earnhardt was chosen as the game's primary ambassador via an online poll that drew more than 750,000 votes through heavy promotion in social media. He will be the focus of a marketing campaign launching next month before the game's November release.(USA Today)(8-22-2012)

  • Jeff Gordon to Visit Georgia Aquarium on Thursday: #24-Jeff Gordon will visit the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta on Thursday, Aug. 23 to promote the upcoming AdvoCare 500 weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Aug. 31-Sept. 2. While at the aquarium, Gordon will take part in a question-and-answer session with fans present at the aquarium from 2:15 pm -2:45 pm/et. The Atlanta Motor Speedway Pace Car will also be present, and will be stationed outside the main entrance of the Georgia Aquarium. NASCAR night racing returns to Atlanta Motor Speedway on Labor Day weekend, Aug. 31-Sept. 2, 2012. Reserve your AdvoCare 500 tickets now. For more information, call the Atlanta Motor Speedway ticket office at (877) 9-AMS-TIX, (770) 946-4211 or visit atlantamotorspeedway.com.(AMS)(8-22-2012)

  • NASCAR Hauler Parade at Bristol: Bristol Motor Speedway invites you to the 15th annual Ford Transporter Parade, Thursday August 23rd. It's a Bristol tradition and an event you will not want to miss. Featuring the brightly-colored, multi-million dollar machines that haul your favorite Sprint Cup Series cars from track-to-track across America, the parade is an amazing 10-mile trip through Bristol, Tenn., down Volunteer Parkway (Hwy. 11E) to "The Last Great Colloseum" that is Bristol Motor Speedway. The parade leaves Bristol Mall at approximately 9 PM, following Food City Race Night. Be sure to look for the famous fireworks and the Food City big cart along the parade route. More info and the map of the parade route at bristolmotorspeedway.com.(8-22-2012)


    News from August 21, 2012

  • Michigan TV Ratings: ESPN's live telecast of the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway on Sunday, Aug. 19, earned a 3.8 household coverage rating (3.3 U.S. rating), averaging 5,199,791 viewers, according to the Nielsen Company. The race was the first to not air against the Olympics since ESPN took over the NASCAR Sprint Cup schedule at the end of July and the rating was up from a 3.7 for last year's race.(ESPN), see past race TV Ratings, 4-year comparison chart and more on the 2012 TV Ratings page.(8-21-2012)

  • Bondo scheme for Biffle at Bristol: Bristol race weekend means great racing action and the intense, in-your-face driving that's synonymous with the track. A revamped surface on the NASCAR circuit's tight track also means that racing is bound to be more exciting and unpredictable than ever as drivers vie for the lead in Bristol's close quarters. For the racers, these conditions signify the inevitable dents, dings and cracks that chip away at paint and hinder driver momentum. Greg Biffle and his race team, however, will be ready to tackle these conditions both on the track and in the garage during the Aug. 25th night race. The #16 3M Ford Fusion will be sporting a Bondo Brand paint scheme, and the #16 crew will be ready with gallons of Bondo® Body Filler and Putty, all part of 3M's family of automotive products, for any body repairs needed between the green and checkered flags. And with a new track surface being put to the test, there's no telling what to expect. An estimated 215 gallons of Bondo Body Filler will be used by NASCAR® Sprint Cup Series teams this weekend to repair damage quickly and ensure sheet metal panels fit the tight NASCAR templates (3M), see image of the scheme on the #16 Team Schemes page.(8-21-2012)

  • NASCAR Reinstates Driver Aaron Fike: NASCAR has reinstated [former Truck Series] driver Aaron Fike upon his successful completion of NASCAR's Substance Abuse Policy Road to Recovery Program. Fike had been indefinitely suspended from NASCAR July 11, 2007 for actions detrimental to stock car racing.(NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications)(8-21-2012)

  • #18 JGR Team Penalized For Rule Infractions: NASCAR announced penalties and fines to the #18 team that competes in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, as a result of rule infractions at Michigan International Speedway. The #18 Toyota was found to be in violation of Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4J (any determination by NASCAR officials that the race equipment used in the event does not conform to NASCAR rules); and 20-2.3A (improperly attached weight) of the 2012 NASCAR rule book. The infraction occurred during practice on Aug. 18. As a result of the violation, crew chief Dave Rogers has been fined $25,000 and placed on NASCAR probation until Oct. 3. In addition, car chief Wesley Sherrill has been placed on NASCAR probation until Oct. 3.(NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications)(8-21-2012)

  • Michigan will talk to NASCAR about Martin's pit road wreck: UPDATE: #55-Mark Martin walked away from his crash at Michigan International Speedway, but the side of his car was essentially impaled by the end of the wall, raising questions about whether that spot - a gap in the barrier on pit road that leaves the edge of the wall exposed - creates a safety risk. MIS later released a statement. "The safety of the drivers is paramount," a spokeswoman said. "So we will seek NASCAR's opinion and work with them on any recommendations they may have on how we can improve any part of the competition area - that includes pit road, pit wall, the track, anything competition-related."(Associated Press)(8-20-2012)
    UPDATE: NASCAR is ready to take a look at Mark Martin's scary crash from over the weekend. Robin Pemberton, NASCAR's vice president for competition, says Martin's team will be consulted, and aerial photos will be studied. Pemberton says Sunday's incident is a reminder that the work on safety doesn't stop.(Associated Press/ESPN)(8-21-2012)

  • Goody's on the #43 at Bristol: Goody's Powder is bringing its fast pain relief to a race that's considered by some as the "king of pain" ... the Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday, August 25. Goody's® will be the title sponsor on the Richard Petty Motorsports' #43 Ford driven by Aric Almirola. Goody's has been involved in the sport for 35 years, but this marks only the third time it's appeared on Richard Petty's famed #43 car. The paint scheme will include the traditional blue and white colors that customers associate with the fast pain reliever.(RPM) , see image of the scheme on the #43 Team Schemes page.(8-21-2012)

  • FOX Deportes to broadcast 15 Cup races in 2013: Two of the biggest brands in all of sports, NASCAR and FOX Deportes, announced they are teaming up to provide the sport's most expansive Spanish-language broadcast offering ever with coverage of 15 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races as well as original programming, daily news segments and weekly updates starting in 2013. Of the 15 race broadcasts, FOX Deportes, the No. 1 U.S. Latino Sports network, will carry live six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, including, for the first time ever, a Spanish-language broadcast of NASCAR's biggest race, the Daytona 500. In addition to the 15 Spanish-language race broadcasts, FOX Deportes will also produce and air a series of original NASCAR programs focused on engaging the Latino fan base. This series will be complemented by daily NASCAR news segments in the No. 1 rated U.S. Latino sports news franchise, Central FOX. FOX Deportes coverage of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racing gets underway Saturday, Feb. 16 with coverage of the Daytona Shootout. In addition to the Daytona 500 a week later, FOX Deportes will also broadcast live in Spanish four additional races from Auto Club Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway.(NASCAR)(8-21-2012)

  • Facts and Notes Bristol Motor Speedway:
    • Groundbreaking for Bristol International Speedway, as Bristol Motor Speedway was originally known, took place in 1960. The track was an exact half-mile.
    • First NASCAR Sprint Cup race was July 30, 1961.
    • In the fall of 1969, the track was reshaped and re-measured to .533-miles.
    • The name changed to Bristol International Raceway in 1978.
    • The first night race was held in the fall of 1978.
    • The surface was changed from asphalt to concrete in 1992.
    • The name changed to Bristol Motor Speedway in May 1996.
    • The track was resurfaced between races in 2007.
    • A milling process took place between races in 2012, erasing the progressive banking in the upper groove of the turns.
    • There have been 103 NASCAR Sprint Cup races since the first race there in 1961, two races each season.
    • All races have been scheduled for 500 laps, except for both races in 1976 and the second in 1977, which were 400 laps.
    • Fred Lorenzen won the first pole.
    • The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race was won by Jack Smith (with relief from Johnny Allen).
    • There have been 45 different pole winners, led by Cale Yarborough and Mark Martin (nine). Martin swept both poles at Bristol in 2009.
    • 39 different drivers have won, led by Darrell Waltrip (12).
    • Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch and Jeff Gordon each have five wins, most among active drivers.
    • The race winner has started from the pole 22 times, the most productive starting position. The last driver to win from the pole was Carl Edwards, in the night race of 2008.
    • 82 of 103 races have been won from a top-10 starting position, including 52 from the first four spots.
    • The deepest in the field that a race winner has started is 38th, by Elliott Sadler in 2001.
    • The last seven Bristol races had a margin of victory under one second.
    • Youngest NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bristol Motor Speedway winner: Kyle Busch (03/25/2007 - 21 years, 10 months, 23 days)
    • Oldest NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bristol Motor Speedway winner: Dale Earnhardt (08/28/1999 - 48 years, 3 months, 30 days)
    (NASCAR)(8-21-2012)

  • NASCAR Foundation announces new Executive Director: The NASCAR Foundation has announced Lorene King will serve as its new executive director. The announcement was made during the unveiling of the new The NASCAR Foundation emblem at the International Motorsports Center in Daytona Beach, Fla., marking the foundation's official headquarters move to the birthplace of NASCAR. King, who assumes her duties immediately, joins The NASCAR Foundation after having served seven years as senior director of corporate alliances at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., where she developed, coordinated and executed successful fundraising and cause marketing strategies like the annual Thanks and Giving campaign, a leading initiative for the organization. During her tenure at St. Jude, King also helped lead integrated program analysis and strategic planning. The move marks a homecoming for King, who grew up in the Daytona Beach area. As executive director, King will report to the foundation's Board of Directors and will oversee the organization's efforts to increase volunteer opportunities, and steer charitable giving on behalf of The NASCAR Foundation.(NASCAR)(8-21-2012)

  • Guest Welcome Village to debut at Bristol this week: Race fans visiting Bristol Motor Speedway for its yearly NASCAR weekends know there isn't a more fan-friendly track on the circuit. For the upcoming August Race Week events, the Speedway will extend its attention to the fans with the introduction of the Bristol Guest Welcome Village. The Guest Welcome Village, located beside the orange bridge between BMS and Bristol Dragway on the Dragway side of the creek, is a designated area that provides guests with information, services and entertainment through the race week and weekend. The Village, which will be staffed with personnel who can assist guests with any questions they might have about BMS and its events, features a stage for entertainment and driver and celebrity appearances, concessions, tented areas with cooling stations with misting and cool seats, picnic tables, closed-circuit television, WiFi access, games and more. The BMS Guest Welcome Village opens Wednesday, Aug. 22 at 8 a.m. It will be open at 10 a.m. Aug. 23 and at 8:30 a.m. on both Aug. 24 and Aug. 25. The Village will remain open each race night for one hour following completion of each event.(BMS)(8-21-2012)

  • Homestead partners with McDonald's and Coke for ticket offer: Miami - Homestead-Miami Speedway is teaming with Coca-Cola and select Florida McDonald's restaurants to offer a ticket package to the Ford EcoBoost 400 - NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series championship race, set for Sunday, November 18, 2012. The offer is now available at participating McDonald's restaurants of Southeast Florida, Southwest Florida, and Florida's Treasure Coast. The cost is $55, which represents $65 in savings, and includes two Grandstand tickets and a $10 coupon redeemable for Coca-Cola products to be used during the championship race at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Homestead-Miami Speedway-themed cups promoting the package and the 11th consecutive year that South Florida has hosted NASCAR's championship races are now available at participating McDonald's. The 32- ounce keepsake cups feature an image of NASCAR Sprint Cup cars racing around Homestead-Miami Speedway. The cups are free with the purchase an a la carte soft drink or an Extra Value Meal that includes a large soft drink.(HMS)(8-21-2012)


    News from August 20, 2012

  • Wilson out as Harvick's crew chief: #29-Kevin Harvick will have a new NASCAR Sprint Cup crew chief at Bristol this weekend. Gil Martin will return to the helm of Harvick's Richard Childress Racing team, replacing Shane Wilson. Wilson and Harvick have struggled this season as Harvick is winless and sits eighth in the standings. "We're just trying to turn things around to make sure we get in the Chase, then be competitive once we get into the Chase," Martin told FOXSports.com. "It's not a question of us knowing each other's history, we've worked together before. Wilson was named crew chief for Harvick following the 2011 season. He replaced Martin, who had been the driver's crew chief since 2009. Harvick and Wilson had previously worked together in the Nationwide Series in 2006, earning 10 wins, 24 top-five finishes and 31 top 10s en route to the title. They won that by a series-record 824-point margin.(Fox Sports)(8-20-2012)

  • The Entry List for the Irwin Tools Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is posted, 47 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including:
    Danica Patrick to make her 4th 2012 start in the #10.
    Not in top 35 of owners points:
    #19-Mike Bliss (45/17)
    #23-Scott Riggs (44/21)
    #26-Josh Wise (40/23)
    #30-David Stremme (38/23)
    #33-Stephen Leicht (36/23)
    #37-J.J. Yeley (53/8)
    #49-Jason Leffler (39/20)
    #79-Kelly Bires (52/5)
    #87-Joe Nemechek (42/23)
    #91-Reed Sorenson (54/3)
    #95-Scott Speed (43/7)
    #98-Michael McDowell (41/23)
    In the event that qualifying is cancelled:
    the eight who would make it [8]: #'s 33,30,26,98,87,23,49,19
    missing the race would be [4]: # 37,95,79,91
    See the full entry list at my Jayski's Bristol Entry List

  • Keselowski says Hendrick teams may be bending rules: #2-Brad Keselowski believes Penske Racing's refusal to bend the rules contributed to him not being able to challenge #48-Jimmie Johnson for the lead Sunday Michigan. Johnson was leading Keselowski with six laps remaining when his Hendrick Motorsports engine blew. #16-Greg Biffle won the race and Keselowski finished second. During the race, Keselowski made reference to Hendrick's "tricks" with their cars. Hendrick's Kasey Kahne and Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished third and fourth, respectively. The Hendrick cars appear to have different rear suspension setups than other cars, especially at intermediate tracks such as Michigan, Indianapolis and Pocono. "There's part and pieces on the car that are moving after inspection that makes the cars more competitive," Keselowski said after the race. "Some guys have it, some don't. There's a question as to the interpretation of the rule. Penske Racing errs on the safe side because we don't want to be the guys that get the big penalty." Keselowski said Penske will need to re-evaluate its setups. "As a group at Penske Racing, we have not felt comfortable enough to risk that name and reputation that Roger has over those parts and pieces. Others have, which is their prerogative," Keselowski said. "I'm not going to slam it. But it's living in a gray area. & We have to make a re-evaluation of that internally to decide if that's the right way to go."(Sporting News)(8-20-2012)

  • Michigan will talk to NASCAR about Martin's pit road wreck: #55-Mark Martin walked away from his crash at Michigan International Speedway, but the side of his car was essentially impaled by the end of the wall, raising questions about whether that spot - a gap in the barrier on pit road that leaves the edge of the wall exposed - creates a safety risk. MIS later released a statement. "The safety of the drivers is paramount," a spokeswoman said. "So we will seek NASCAR's opinion and work with them on any recommendations they may have on how we can improve any part of the competition area - that includes pit road, pit wall, the track, anything competition-related."(Associated Press)(8-20-2012)

  • Gordon unhappy with Earnhardt, Jr.: The Pure Michigan 400 had some shocking moments Sunday, including a verbal feud between Hendrick Motorsports teammates #24-Jeff Gordon and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. "Tell the f------ 88 he can thank me later for not wrecking him," Gordon said on his radio during the race. "That was f------ stupid." Earnhardt had moved in front of Gordon midway through the race with a pass Gordon felt was a little risky. Team owner Rick Hendrick sided with Earnhardt: "Man, you didn't do anything. Just drive that thing to the front." Earnhardt finished fourth. Gordon finished a disappointing 28th after an engine failure, but later talked about the incident in the garage. "He took me four-wide, then slid up in front of me in Turn 2," Gordon said of Earnhardt's pass. "I had to check up and it could have wrecked all of us. It wasn't the smartest thing to do, especially to a teammate. But he chose to do it and it all worked out. I don't care who does it, I'm going to show my displeasure if they do something like that."(ESPN)(8-20-2012)

  • Commercial breakdown and links related to the 2012 Pure Michigan 400: 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 1:02 PM, and stopped at the the waving of the checkered flag at 4:08 PM (all times are EST). Did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. ESPN was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 115
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 637
    Number of 'Side-by-Side' commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 0
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast: 35
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 4 min. 30 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 1:02 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 4:08 PM
    Minutes of race broadcast: 137
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 49
    Minutes of 'Side-by-Side' commercials (split-screen): 0
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of 'mystery cautions' (debris not shown): 0
    Total race brdcst time 137 Total comm. brdcst time 49
    See past races, sponsor links on the ( TV Commercials page.(8-20-2012)


    News from August 19, 2012

  • Biffle wins at Michigan: #16-Greg Biffle won the Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway for his 2nd win of year, 3rd at Michigan and 18th career win.
    #2-Keselowski finished 2nd followed by #5-Kahne, #88-Earnhardt, Jr., #9-Ambrose, #99-Edwards, #15-Bowyer, #39-Newman, #27-Menard, and #56-Truex, Jr.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson took the lead with 10 laps to go, but blew an engine with 6 laps to go and finished 27th.
    Johnson, the points leader coming into the race, fell to 4th in the standings. #16-Biffle takes the points lead by 20 over #17-Kenseth.
    Pole sitter, #55-Martin dominated the race early, but spun on lap 65 after #47-Labonte spun in front of him and #5-Kahne ran into him. Martin slid onto pit road and hit the pit wall at an opening, busting the oil tank and destrying the car. He finished 35th.
    There were 8 cautions for 35 yellow flag laps. There were 26 lead changes among 13 drivers. The average speed was 144.662mph.
    The estimated attendence was 83,000 up over last years 81,000. There were an estimated 82,000 at June's Michigan race.
    See race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Michigan Race Results page (pdf).(8-19-2012)

  • Race Fast Facts - Michigan
    Greg Biffle won the 43rd Annual Pure Michigan 400 , his 18th victory in 353 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is Roush Fenway Racing's 12th win at Michigan International Speedway, breaking a tie with the Wood Brothers for most all-time at the track.
    This Biffle his second victory and 14th top-10 finish in 2012.
    This is his third victory and 12th top-10 finish in 20 races at Michigan International Speedway. He also won in 2004 and 2005.
    Brad Keselowski (second) posted his second top-10 finish in seven races at Michigan International Speedway. It is his 13th top-10 finish in 2012. It is his best career finish at his home track.
    Kasey Kahne (third) posted his eighth top-10 finish in 18 races at Michigan International Speedway.
    Greg Biffle leads the point standings by 20 points over Matt Kenseth.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(8-19-2012)

  • 2012 Sprint Cup Driver Championship Points Standings:
    [after Michigan, race 23 of 36]
    1) #16-Greg Biffle [2 wins], 823
    2) #17-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 803, -20
    3) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [1 win], 801, -22
    4) #48-Jimmie Johnson [3 wins], 795, -28
    5) #2-Brad Keselowski [3 wins], 776, -47
    6) #56-Martin Truex Jr. [0 wins], 763, -60
    7) #15-Clint Bowyer [1 wins], 757, -66
    8) #29-Kevin Harvick [0 wins], 738, -85
    9) #14-Tony Stewart [3 wins], 728, -95
    10) #11-Denny Hamlin [2 wins], 727, -96
    Current wild card Chase drivers:
    WC1) #5-Kasey Kahne [2 wins, 11th in points]
    WC2) #39-Ryan Newman [1 win, 13th in points]
    (ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
    See drivers championship points standings on the Drivers Points Standings (pdf).(8-19-2012)

  • 2012 Sprint Cup Driver Chase Wild-Card Race:
    [after Michigan, race 23 of 36]
    A look at the race for the two wild-card positions for the Chase based on wins and being inside the top 20 in points.
    Driver [wins] standings, behind 10th
    first two would make the chase as wild cards:
    #5-Kasey Kahne [2 wins] 11th -33 points out of 10th
    #39-Ryan Newman [1 win] 13th -47
    eight other drivers currently in the running for the wild cards:
    #18-Kyle Busch [1 win] 14th -58
    #24-Jeff Gordon [1 win] 16th -77
    #9-Marcos Ambrose [1 win] 17th -88
    #20-Joey Logano [1 win] 18th -127
    these drivers have no wins but are in the top-20
    #99-Carl Edwards 12th -38
    #27-Paul Menard 15th -62
    #1-Jamie McMurray 19th -156
    #31-Jeff Burton 20th -161
    (ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
    The Chase: The top-10 drivers will make the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Positions 11 and 12 in the 12-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup are Wild Cards, and will go to drivers outside the top 10 with the most wins, as long as they are ranked in the top 20 in points. If multiple drivers outside the top 10 tie for wins, the tie-breaker will go to the race winner with the highest points position.
    See drivers championship points standings on the Drivers Points Standings (pdf).(8-19-2012)

  • Top-35 in Owner Points and guaranteed a starting spot at Bristol:
    #36 remains in 35th and is now 88 points ahead of 36th, the #33 team.
    Rank) Car#-Driver/Team, owners pts, +/-
    33) #10-Reutimann-Patrick/Baldwin, 332 +131
    33) #32-Bell/FAS Lane Racing, 324 +123
    35) #36-Blaney/Baldwin, 289 +88 ahead of 36th
    these teams / drivers will need to qualify by speed:
    36) #33-Leicht/Childress-Falk, 201, -88 from the top 35
    37) #21-Bayne/Wood Bros., 181, -108
    38) #30-Stremme/Inception, 167, -122
    The teams are NOT locked in past the next race as the owners points change after each race.
    For the owner points standings, see the Owners Points Standings (pdf).(8-19-2012)

  • Some drivers can clinch Chase spot after Michigan: UPDATE: Though seemingly a formality, five drivers can mathematically clinch a spot in the 2013 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup this weekend at Michigan International Speedway. Here are the candidates, and the necessary facts and figures for a clinch:
    • #48-Jimmie Johnson: The magic number for this weekend is 145. Any driver 145 points ahead of 11th place leaving Michigan will clinch a top 10 spot, which is of special importance to Johnson. After race No. 26 at Richmond, all 12 Chase drivers will have their points reset to 2,000. But only the top 10 will earn three bonus points for each win during the regular season. Currently Johnson has three wins, equaling nine potential Chase bonus points. Johnson currently sits 124 points ahead of 11th (a maximum of 47 points can be made up in a given race). He could also clinch at least a Wild Card spot by winning on Sunday, regardless of his stature ahead of 11th.
    • #16-Greg Biffle: Biffle can lock up a top-10 spot. Currently owning a 123-point cushion over 11th, Biffle needs to reach the magic number of 145 leaving Michigan.
    • #17-Matt Kenseth: Like his Roush Fenway Racing teammate, Kenseth can clinch a top-10 spot by leaving Michigan with a 145-point lead over 11th. He currently sits 122 points ahead of 11th.
    • #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr.: Earnhardt has a tougher task than the aforementioned drivers. His current cushion over 11th is 107 points. He can lock up a top-10 spot by reaching the 145-point magic number.
    • #2-Brad Keselowski: Keselowski has a remote chance of clinching at least a Wild Card spot with a win on Sunday, depending on the finishes of a number of other drivers. (NASCAR)(8-16-2012)
    UPDATE: #16-Greg Biffle now leads 11th place #5-Kahne by 129 points, so no drivers clinched a spot in the Chase after Michigan.

  • Newman not feeling well: UPDATES: According to PRN's Mark Garrow, "#39-Ryan Newman has chills not feeling well according to his crew chief Tony Gibson. He's trying to get Newman to go to care center for fluids." and "Gibson said he doubted it would be needed but nosing around for possible back-up driver"(8-19-2012)
    UPDATE: Fox Sports' Lee Spencer tweets, "[Stewart-Haas' Greg] Zipadelli says Dave Blaney & Scott Riggs standing by for #39 but @RyanNewman39 insists he'll go the distance ".(8-19-2012)
    UPDATE 2 Wendy Venturini reported on SPEED's Race Day that David Reutimann will stand by for Newman.(8-19-2012)

  • Keselowski hasn't talked to Busch after Watkins Glen: #18-Kyle Busch hasn't spoken to #22-Brad Keselowski since the last-lap incident that knocked Busch out of the lead last Sunday at Watkins Glen International. Kyle Busch hasn't spoken to reporters either, declining to share his views of the collision after the race and after Friday's qualifying session at Michigan International Speedway. Busch had plenty of reason to be disappointed. After taking the white flag in the lead on Sunday, his No. 18 Toyota slipped in oil in the first corner. Busch went wide, to the left of the rumble strips that define the course. Keselowski would like to see any issues he might have with Busch resolved before the Chase starts at Chicagoland on Sept. 16. "I spoke with his crew chief, Dave Rogers, and tried to get a hold of him, but every phone number that I had was bad or something," Keselowski said Friday at Michigan. "Like I said after the race, it was unfortunate, because dumping the leader on the last lap is not something that I want to be known for. It certainly wasn't something that I wanted to see happen. I wasn't something that I intended to happen, but it obviously happened, and I can't make that go away and only hope he understands as a racer that he is that things like that happen, and it's just sometimes part of the breaks."(NASCAR Wire Serivce)(8-19-2012)


    News from August 18, 2012

  • Happy Hour practice: for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is over after 55 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest, notes:
    #16-Biffle 198.879
    #48-Johnson 198.222
    #20-Logano 197.960
    #17-Kenseth 197.916
    #55-Martin 197.488
    slowest: #36-Blaney 189.949 & #87-Nemechek 189.733.
    notes: David Reutimann is practicing the #18 for Kyle Busch who has left the track to head to Montreal for the Nationwide race. Dave Blaney practiced teh #10 for Reutimann. #88-Earnhardt, Jr. spunn off turn two late in the practice and hit the wall. He will have to go to a backup car. #51-Busch spun late but did not hit anything.
    See speeds and laps run on the Michigan practice 3 speeds page (pdf).(8-18-2012)

  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway have been made.
    Pole sitter #55-Martin chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #99-Edwards took pit stall 23, the first pitstall in behind the start finish line.
    #48-Johnson, who starts 3rd took the 38th pit stall, the next stall with an opening in front of it.
    The 43rd and final pit stall was taken by #17-Kenseth, who starts 4th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on the Pit Stall Selection chart.(8-18-2012)

  • First Saturday practice: for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is over after 55 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest, notes:
    Biffle 200.362
    #5-Kahne 198.588
    #99-Edwards 198.555
    #55-Martin 198.178
    #88-Earnhardt, Jr. 198.134
    slowest: #91-Sorenson 185.701 & #19-Leffler 182.992.
    notes: #48-Johnson's team had to change the engine. He will have to go to the rear for the race.
    See speeds and laps run on the Michigan practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(8-18-2012)

  • Teams allowed to scuff tires before race: The new high-speed asphalt here proved troublesome in June, but this time Goodyear's new tires are working well so far, Goodyear's Rick Heinrich says. New asphalt is typically a low-wear situation, which can create heat issues, which is what Goodyear is trying to mitigate this time. #56-Martin Truex Jr., though, says there was little grip on the track for most of the afternoon practice session. And Goodyear, at NASCAR's request, has released all the race day 400 tires early, so teams can scuff them in Saturday morning if they wish. Scuffing generally hardens a tire, making it more resistant to blistering.(MikeMulhern.net)(8-18-2012)

  • Kids seating available in turn one at Michigan: Due to the overwhelming response to the family grandstand in turn three, Michigan International Speedway has extended its free seating for kids 12 and under to the turn one grandstand. Kids 12 and under can now sit for free in sections 59-111 in the turn one grandstands. All rows, 1-40 will be available for this special opportunity. A free kids ticket is required for this area. From this vantage point, fans will be treated to a great view as the cars fan out to two and three wide at 200 mph as they approach at nearly top speed. MIS has offered several ticket packages in addition to its kids 12 and under free seating program. These have been instrumental in the increase of children coming with their families to the racetrack. MIS has prided itself in making the race a family affair and the New Holland Fan Plaza allows children of all ages to learn about the sport of NASCAR as well as enjoy activities in the Kids Zone.(MIS)(8-18-2012)

  • Kentucky Speedway seeks fan council applicants: Kentucky Speedway is seeking 15 race enthusiasts to found a Fan Council. Selected members will work directly with the speedway management team to brainstorm, discuss, debate and focus on ideas that will enhance the speedway guest experience. Discussions will be conducted throughout the year by either conference call, e-mail, survey or meetings at the 107,000-capacity speedway. Each council member must be at least 18 years of age and will be asked to commit to a one-year term. Applications are available for download at http://www.kentuckyspeedway.com/fancouncil/. Applications being returned by mail must be postmarked by Sept. 14, 2012. Council member selections will be made by Sept. 21, 2012.(Kentucky Speedway)(8-18-2012)


    News from August 17, 2012

  • Martin wins pole at Michigan: #55-Mark Martin won the pole for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway with a speed of 199.706mph for his 4th pole of 2012, his first Michigan pole and 55th career pole. He is now tied with Bill Elliott for 7th for career poles.
    Martin breaks the track record for oldest pole winner at 53 years, 7 months, 8 days. The old record at MIS was held by Dale Jarrett at 45 years, 6 months, 21 days old, set in June 2002. Harry Gant hold the all-time record for oldest pole winner at 54 years, 7 months, 15 days at Bristol in August 1994.
    #99-Edwards will start 2nd followed by #48-Johnson, #17-Kenseth, #5-Kahne, #21-Bayne, #56-Truex, Jr., #9-Ambrose, #83-Cassill, and #27-Menard.
    The go-or-go homers who made the race (8): #21-Bayne, #91-Sorenson, #30-Stremme, #19-Leffler, #26-Wise, #87-Nemechek, #23-Riggs, #98-Skinner.
    The go-or-go homers who failed to qualify for the race (2): #33-Leicht, #37-Yeley.
    See qualifying order, qualifying results, pole progression & starting lineup on the Michigan Qualifying page (pdf).(8-17-2012)

  • Qualifying Fast Facts - Michigan:
    Mark Martin won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 43rd Annual Pure Michigan 400 with a lap of 36.053 seconds, 199.706 mph.
    This is his 55th pole in 845 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races. With the pole, he moves into a tie for seventh with Bill Elliott on the all-time series poles list.
    This is his fourth pole and ninth top-10 start in 2012.
    This is his first pole in 54 races at Michigan International Speedway. Martin started first in June of 1990 when qualifying was canceled due to inclement weather.
    Carl Edwards (second) posted his eighth top-10 start of 2012 and his second in 17 races at Michigan International Speedway.
    Jimmie Johnson (third) posted his 15th top-10 start at Michigan International Speedway. It is his 16th in 23 races this season.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(8-17-2012)

  • Coverage of Qualifying for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is scheduled for Friday, August 17, 2012 at 4:10pm/et.
    Television (TV): SPEED, 4:00pm/et
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: 10:00pm/et & 2:30am/et.

  • Qualifying Order for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is posted. 45 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers scheduled to go out is #36-Blaney, slowest in practice.
    The final driver scheduled to go out is #48-Johnson, who was fastest in first practice.
    Qualifying order is set by the first practice session, with slowest driver going out by speed and the fastest going out last. The non-top 35 drivers are now mixed in with the top-35 in owners points, slowest to fastest.
    See the full qualifying order on the Michigan Qualifying Page.(8-17-2012)

  • Friday practice: for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is over after 90 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest, notes:
    #48-Johnson 197.450
    #5-Kahne 196.861
    #55-Martin 196.786
    #29-Harvick 196.705
    #55-Martin 196.448
    slowest: #32-Bell 187.018 & #36-Blaney 179.739
    notes: There was an early caution after #51-Busch dropped fluid on the track from a broken oil line. #43-Almirola spun off turn 4 but did not hit anything. #83-Cassill also had what appeared to be an oil leak, bringing out another caution.
    This practice will determine the order for qualifying, which is scheduled for 4:10pm/et Friday and will be aired on SPEED.
    See speeds and laps run on the Michigan practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-17-2012)

  • Go-or-go homers: where did the cars outside the top-35 in owners points practice in Friday's practice:
    these drivers would make the race if the things stay the same:
    #21-Bayne, 19th fastest overall
    #30-Stremme, 27th
    #91-Sorenson, 28th
    #19-Leffler, 31st
    #87-Nemechek, 32nd
    #23-Riggs, 37th
    #26-Wise, 38th
    #98-Skinner, 39th
    if things stay the same, these drivers would miss the race
    #33-Leicht, 42nd
    #37-Yeley, 43rd
    (8-3-2012)

  • National Guard extends sponsorship of Earnhardt, Jr.: The Army National Guard will continue as a primary sponsor of the #88 Sprint Cup Series team and driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. after extending its relationship with Hendrick Motorsports through the 2013 NASCAR season. The National Guard will receive primary paint schemes in 20 Sprint Cup races, including the 2013 Daytona 500, and prominent brand placement during all non-primary events. The National Guard's association with Hendrick Motorsports began with sponsorship of the #25 Sprint Cup team for the 2007 season. Its most recent contract, which included 18 primary paint schemes per year with the #88 team, was set to expire at the end of 2012. "It's an honor to be associated with the National Guard and its Citizen Soldiers," said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports. "Like many of the world's most innovative marketers and leading brands, the Guard sees the opportunities that our sport presents, and they have built a strong effort around it. As we go into 2013 together, we'll continue to focus on the performance of the program both on and off the racetrack." Additional sponsorship for the #88 Chevy will be announced at a later date.(Hendrick Motorsports)(8-17-2012)

  • Gibbs suing sponsor for non-payment: Joe Gibbs Racing was supposed to have Trans-Lux on the Sprint Cup car of #11-Denny Hamlin later this year but the company allegedly hasn't paid for its sponsorship of JGR, according to a lawsuit filed earlier this month. Trans-Lux, which manufactures video display boards, including scoreboards for everything from high school fields to arenas, sponsored Joey Logano in his Nationwide Series win at California earlier this season. According to a news release at the time, the sponsorship would move to Hamlin's Cup car for one race this fall 2012 and also included access to NFL Hall of Fame coach and team owner Joe Gibbs. The two-page lawsuit, filed by JGR on Aug. 3 in North Carolina Superior Court in Charlotte, does not list the amount of the sponsorship deal, which was signed in 2011. It alleges that Trans-Lux "breached the contract by failing to make various payments, when due."(Sporting News)(8-17-2012)

  • Code 3 Associates will sponsor Newman at Kansas: Code 3 Associates, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization specializing in animal rescue and recovery in disaster areas, has formed a partnership with Stewart-Haas Racing. Made possible by a benefactor with interests in animal-related causes, Code 3 Associates will be the primary sponsor of SHR's #39 team and driver Ryan Newman throughout the Hollywood Casino 400 race weekend Oct. 17-21 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan. Formed in 1985, Colorado-based Code 3 Associates is a national response team that at the request of local government officials provides animal rescue and recovery during any kind of disaster. The organization has evolved from one unpaid volunteer to at least 75 professional responders around the country, which includes animal welfare, law enforcement, fire, EMS and veterinary specialists from the United States and Canada. While its focus is animals and their owners, Code 3 Associates trains its responders to the standards of human rescue, and Code 3 Associates also provides training to conduct thorough investigations into animal welfare, all of which is accredited by Colorado State University (CSU) and the CSU Veterinary Teaching Hospital.(True Speed Communications/Stewart-Hass), see an image of the car on the #39 team paint schemes page.(8-17-2012)

  • TMone sponsoring Reutimann again: As Tommy Baldwin Racing heads to the Irish Hills, TMone will once again outsource the company's marketing the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team as it focuses on an initiative to hire veterans. David Reutimann will pilot the #10 Chevy backed by @TMone in the Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway Sunday, August 19. TMone is a provider of domestic business process outsourcing and customer relationship management outsourcing. TMone outsourced the company's marketing to TBR for 11 races this season.(Tommy Baldwin Racing)(8-17-2012)

  • Keselowski Featured in New ESPN NASCAR Ad: #22-Brad Keselowski is featured in the newest "Nothing Beats First Place" ad to promote ESPN's coverage of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the third of four ads in the humorous campaign. In the new spot, Keselowski fights to stay awake after a gigantic turkey feast, gets (fake) pepper-sprayed while trying to decipher an autostereogram image and answers odd questions at a news conference, none of which are harder than winning. Wieden + Kennedy New York is the creative agency for the campaign. The spot debuts in ESPN's telecast of Sunday's Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway.(ESPN), see the video and outtakes at ESPN Front Row.(8-17-2012)S

  • Chassis selections for this weeks race: see the list of many teams [that report or post these] and what chassis were selected by the team to run at Michigan International Speedway on the Michigan Race Info page - Chassis selection area.

  • Chicago to open gates for practice day: Chicagoland Speedway will open a portion of the south grandstands on Friday, September 14 for viewing of the Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series practice sessions. For a $10 donation to R.A.C.E., Chicagoland Speedway's 501(c)(3) foundation, fans will have access to general admission seating in the stands. Tickets are only available for purchase on September 14 at the south gate. Kids 12 and under will be admitted free of charge. Fans can enter through Gate 2 off of Schweitzer road and park in Lot P. Parking lots will open at 10:00 am with gates opening at 11:00 am.(Chicagoland Speedway)(8-16-2012)

  • Bristol guests to receive flag, coupons courtesy of Outback: Bristol Motor Speedway guests at the Aug. 25 IRWIN Tools Night Race will receive a couple of special rewards from Outback Steakhouse just by finding their seats. As part of the continued involvement in NASCAR racing by the popular restaurant chain, the seat of each guest provides not only a great spot to watch the IRWIN Tools Night Race, but also a flag to wave at the start of the event, as well as a coupon for $10 off at Outback on any two entrees. Outback gives fans a free Bloomin' Onion the Monday immediately following a Sprint Cup race if Ryan Newman finishes among the top 10. To date, Newman, who has one win, has placed among the top 10 eight times this season, giving fans plenty to cheer about on Mondays.(BMS)(8-17-2012)


    News from August 16, 2012

  • Gibbs says Logano's future still up in the air: #20-Joey Logano, 22, has been with JGR since he was 16. The organization has a lot invested in him and Logano has a lot invested in the organization. There are loyalty issues on both sides. But without a guarantee of sponsorship to drive a full season in 2013 and beyond, with primary sponsor Home Depot likely going to Matt Kenseth next year, the opportunity to latch on with Shell Pennzoil or another sponsor at Penske would be too good to pass up. Here's what we know: Logano has two offers on the table, including one from Gibbs. The JGR offer depends on sponsorship, and team owner Joe Gibbs said on ESPN on Wednesday that "everything is up in the air'' with Logano. Without directly addressing Kenseth, Gibbs said he hoped to be able to announce something in two weeks, which coincidentally would have the Cup series in Atlanta, the headquarters for Home Depot. Logano said last week he should have clarity in a few days to two weeks, with the two weeks now in the equation since a few days have passed. He also was noncommittal on whether he preferred to stay at JGR.(ESPN)(8-16-2012)

  • Some drivers can clinch Chase spot after Michigan: Though seemingly a formality, five drivers can mathematically clinch a spot in the 2013 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup this weekend at Michigan International Speedway. Here are the candidates, and the necessary facts and figures for a clinch:
    • #48-Jimmie Johnson: The magic number for this weekend is 145. Any driver 145 points ahead of 11th place leaving Michigan will clinch a top 10 spot, which is of special importance to Johnson. After race No. 26 at Richmond, all 12 Chase drivers will have their points reset to 2,000. But only the top 10 will earn three bonus points for each win during the regular season. Currently Johnson has three wins, equaling nine potential Chase bonus points. Johnson currently sits 124 points ahead of 11th (a maximum of 47 points can be made up in a given race). He could also clinch at least a Wild Card spot by winning on Sunday, regardless of his stature ahead of 11th.
    • #16-Greg Biffle: Biffle can lock up a top-10 spot. Currently owning a 123-point cushion over 11th, Biffle needs to reach the magic number of 145 leaving Michigan.
    • #17-Matt Kenseth: Like his Roush Fenway Racing teammate, Kenseth can clinch a top-10 spot by leaving Michigan with a 145-point lead over 11th. He currently sits 122 points ahead of 11th.
    • #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr.: Earnhardt has a tougher task than the aforementioned drivers. His current cushion over 11th is 107 points. He can lock up a top-10 spot by reaching the 145-point magic number.
    • #2-Brad Keselowski: Keselowski has a remote chance of clinching at least a Wild Card spot with a win on Sunday, depending on the finishes of a number of other drivers. (NASCAR)(8-16-2012)

  • Azar singing National Anthem at Michigan; guest of #78 team: Country music recording artist and songwriter Steve Azar will be a guest of the #78 Furniture Row Racing Sprint Cup team at this weekend's race at Michigan International Speedway. Azar, who has recorded a number of hits, including the "American Farmer" tribute, will sing the national anthem prior to Sunday's Pure Michigan 400. Azar is a supporter of Furniture Row Racing's Farm American program, an initiative to keep America's food supply produced in the United States.(Furniture Row Racing)(8-16-2012)

  • Michigan Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Camping World Truck Series will run different tire set-ups at Michigan this weekend . . . Sprint Cup teams will be on a new combination of left- and right-side tires . . . this tire set-up was confirmed at a Goodyear test at Michigan on July 30 . . . a total of 27 Sprint Cup teams participated in that test (along with two Camping World Truck teams) . . . compared to what was run at Michigan in June, this left-side tire (D-4558) combines the updated construction that teams ran in practice with the compound they ran in the race, while this right-side tire (D-4560) features just a slight reduction to the gage (tread thickness) from the tire teams ran throughout the weekend . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners in all four tires at Michigan . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.(Goodyear), see full notes, tire codes, tire pressures on the Michigan Race Info page - Goodyear section.(8-16-2012)

  • Michigan offering local cuisine for race fans: Race fans from all over the United State are heading to Michigan International Speedway for this weekend's Pure Michigan 400, and local and healthy food options await them. Americrown, the company that provides catering, food and beverage concessions at MIS, has partnered with several local companies to support the economy and provide concessions that can only be found at NASCAR's fastest racetrack. The special sauce that goes on all Coney dogs comes from Jackson, Mich.,-based Todoroff Foods, the company that brought Coney dogs to the state. Have you ever wondered where you can get that special bun that surrounds the juicy eight-ounce angus burger? The fresh brioche roll comes from Stone Hearth Breads and Bakery, just three miles from MIS in Brooklyn. That's 2,000 rolls - all locally baked. Backwoods BBQ concession stand in section 15 has added a new item to its expansive menu and it is sure to be a hit among race fans. The cornmeal dusted PO' Boy sandwich with a spicy remoulade sauce is unique to the Irish Hills. In addition, MIS has many healthy food items throughout its many concession stands on race weekends.(MIS)(8-16-2012)

  • Kids Free on Friday and Saturday at Atlanta; Sunday Student Tickets Available: Three nights of NASCAR night racing at Atlanta Motor Speedway can be a family event at an affordable price this Labor Day weekend with special offers for students and youths under the age of 12. While adult tickets start at just $39, students can gain access to the Elliott Grandstand for just $19 for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AdvoCare 500 on Sunday, Sept. 2. A valid student ID must be presented at the grandstand gate. The great value is not only for Sunday's racing, as youths 12 and under will be admitted free to both Friday and Saturday night's races with a paying adult in the General Admission seating areas, located on the speedway's fronstretch. There is no limit to the number of children that each adult can bring.(AMS)(8-16-2012)

  • Friday pit passes available at Richmond: Richmond International Raceway is bringing you closer to the action than ever before with Friday Pre-Race Pit Passes prior to the upcoming Virginia 529 College Savings 250 NASCAR Nationwide Series race on Friday, September 7. You can watch NASCAR pole qualifying and practice from the perspective of a NASCAR crew member and see the stock cars from just a few feet away as they rumble down pit road, giving you an unforgettable experience of the sights and sounds that only NASCAR can produce. Individual Friday Pre-Race Pit Passes, $50 per person, are the only way fans can gain access to pit road this season. Again this year, shorts, short-sleeve or sleeveless shirts and blouses and open-toed shoes are permitted. Shoes, shirts and pants or shorts, dresses and/or skirts and blouses are required. No alcohol or coolers are permitted in the infield.(RIR)(8-15-2012)

  • Kansas Speedway repave update: The Kansas Speedway track reconfiguration and road course project is about to take the checkered flag, weather permitting, in a few days. There are just a few areas on the apron that need some last paving, along with pit road. The road course still needs guardrails and tire barriers, along with a few other finishing touches.(Kansas Speedway)(8-16-2012)


    News from August 15, 2012

  • Source disputes Allmendinger's defense: It is highly unlikely that AJ Allmendinger's positive test for amphetamines came from a single pill taken one time as the suspended Sprint Cup driver recently stated, a source close to the situation told ESPN.com. It also is highly unlikely that Allmendinger will complete NASCAR's Road to Recovery program necessary for reinstatement by the end of August as the driver stated, according to the source. "That's not going to happen," the source said. The driver said last week that the positive test resulted from prescription Adderal that he was given by the friend of a friend two days before he was randomly tested at Kentucky Speedway on June 29. Adderall is administered medically to control symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. However, the source told ESPN.com that Allmendinger's one-pill defense is not consistent with the test results despite the fact Adderall can remain in a person's system up to 72 hours. And while Adderall contains compounds of amphetamines, experts in the field say there are other prescription drugs and illegal drugs that contain the same compounds. NASCAR denied ESPN.com's request to interview Dr. David Black, who heads up the Nashville-based Aegis Sciences Corp. that runs the drug testing program for the sport, regarding Allmendinger's claims. Allmendinger, according to the source, also did not reveal to the medical review officer during standard questioning given before the random test that he took anything given to him by another person that possibly could register a positive test. See more at ESPN.com.(8-15-2012)

  • Kligerman to help Hornish Jr. at MIS: UPDATE: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Parker Kligerman will have a full schedule behind the wheel ahead of him at Michigan International Speedway this weekend as he makes his first start for Red Horse Racing in the Truck Series. Aside from his inaugural run in the #7 Tundra for the NCWTS event, Kligerman will also fill in during NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice and qualifying in the #22 Pennzoil/Shell Penske Racing Dodge. Kligerman, who was scheduled for this fill in position prior to signing with Red Horse this week, knows that he will have less time on his hands, but is confident he will have no issues balancing both schedules. "I've done a lot of testing in the cup car before so it should be a seamless transition. Aside from having little time between practice sessions, there should be no issues with the schedule. I'm a professional race car driver and my job at the end of the day is just worry about driving as fast as possible, so that's what I'm going to do," said Kligerman.(Red Horse Racing)(8-13-2012)

    UPDATE: With Sam Hornish Jr. running third in the Nationwide Series points and poised to have a serious shot at the series' points title, he will remain in Montreal focusing on the task at hand there through the conclusion of Saturday's race. The first time he will climb aboard the Shell-Pennzoil Dodge will be on Sunday morning on the starting grid at MIS.(Tom Roberts PR), so Hornish will have to start the race from the back regardless of where Kligerman qualifies.(8-15-2012)

  • More Canadian races in the future? This weekend's annual Nationwide race in Montreal might be just a taste of what's to come north of the border for NASCAR. Since 2007, the Nationwide Series has visited the famed Circuit Gilles Villeneuve road circuit. Every year, rain or shine the event draws one of the largest and most enthusiastic crowds of the entire season. The success of the race has sparked speculation more of NASCAR's top divisions may compete in Canada in the not too distant future including the Sprint Cup Series. Ron Fellows is now co-owner of what was once known as Mosport International Raceway, a storied motorsports facility in Ontario that includes a 2.5-mile road circuit as well as a half mile oval track. Fellows has made it clear he would like nothing more than to bring a NASCAR Nationwide and/or Camping World Truck Series race to what's now known as Canadian Tire Motorsports Park sooner rather than later. "We've talked to NASCAR and yes while we weren't able to put it together for 2012, we're pursuing something for our 2013 schedule," said Fellows. NASCAR CEO Brian France was in Montreal in recent months to meet with Circuit Gilles Villeneuve officials and speculation is the sanctioning body would consider adding a third road course to the Cup schedule and take the series international. But the question is where would the date come from? NASCAR will not add another weekend to the racing schedule. In order for Montreal to host a Sprint Cup event, another track will have to lose one. Therein lies the roadblock for NASCAR to bring its premier circuit to Canada.(CBS Sports)(8-15-2012)

  • West Coast Customs and Geek Squad partner on the #99: The world famous West Coast Customs (WCC), renown vehicle customizers and producers of the hit vehicle-build reality TV show Inside West Coast Customs, has partnered with Best Buy's Geek Squad to develop Carl Edwards' #99 race car design for the NASCAR Pure Michigan 400 race. Ryan Friedlinghaus, a NASCAR fan, was excited when long-time partner Geek Squad approached the WCC team on designing a car for this race. "This was a very unique and exciting opportunity for West Coast Customs," said Ryan Friedlinghaus, CEO and founder of West Coast Customs. "As a devoted NASCAR fan, seeing the WCC design and logo on Carl Edwards' race car will be an amazing experience. We are filming the unveiling and all the activities throughout the weekend for our TV show Inside West Coast Customs." West Coast Customs will feature a display in the NASCAR fan zone area at Michigan International Speedway August 17th - 19th. The Inside West Coast Customs Geek Squad/Carl Edwards episode will be airing this fall. Owner Ryan Friedlinghaus and his shop have been doing exclusive custom builds for the MTV show Pimp my Ride, TLC's Street Customs, Street Customs Berlin and now on his new show Inside West Coast Customs. Ryan and his crew are world-renowned for their extreme vehicles, outrageous features, and next level designs.(Roush Fenway Racing), see an image of the car on the #99 team paint schemes page)(8-15-2012)

  • Earnhardt, Jr. opens car dealerships in Florida with Hendrick Automotive Group: #88- Dale Earnhardt Jr. has opened two auto dealerships in Tallahassee, Fla. The dealerships are the first for Earnhardt, who owns the stores in partnership with Hendrick Automotive Group Chairman and Hendrick Motorsports Owner Rick Hendrick. Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet (3127 W. Tennessee Street) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Buick GMC Cadillac (1850 Capitol Circle NE) officially opened under the Earnhardt name Monday. The acquisition from longtime owner Larry Strom was finalized over the weekend. "This is something Rick and I have talked about doing ever since I came to Hendrick Motorsports, but we agreed it had to be the right situation," said Earnhardt, who drives the #88 Diet Mountain Dew/National Guard Chevys for Hendrick Motorsports. "I'm honored to work with everyone at Hendrick Automotive Group and have this opportunity in a great market like Tallahassee. I was a mechanic in a Chevy store before I started racing, and I've always loved General Motors products and been interested in the dealership business. So it's exciting for me, and I hope it's going to be exciting for the people in the Tallahassee area." The dealerships are the first in the Tallahassee market for Hendrick Automotive Group, which will manage the stores. The company operates 84 dealerships across the country, including the Earnhardt locations. Both facilities will undergo renovations to modernize their appearances and amenities.(Hendrick Automotive Group)(8-15-2012)

  • Almirola to have Eckrich colors back at Michigan: Aric Almirola and the #43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford team will once again carry the distinctive colors of Eckrich this weekend at Michigan International Speedway. As Eckrich continues to honor military families, the #43 Ford will again carry a splash of red-white-and-blue by featuring the star-spangled logo of Operation Homefront, a national non-profit organization that provides emergency financial assistance to the families of service members and wounded warriors. This summer, Eckrich, part of the John Morrell Food Group, a subsidiary of Smithfield Foods, has partnered with Operation Homefront to support military families. The company has already donated $200,000 to Operation Homefront through the contribution of five cents from each purchase of specially marked products from May 1 through July 4.(Richard Petty Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #43 team paint schemes page.(8-15-2012)

  • Atlanta Motor Speedway unveils Taste of Coca-Cola Concession Menu: Due to an overwhelming response by fans, drivers and members of the media, Atlanta Motor Speedway will offer the full lineup of food items made with Coca-Cola products at the Taste of Coca-Cola concession stand during the Labor Day Weekend of NASCAR Night Racing at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The lineup of items was put to a fan vote over the summer and the Cherry Coke BBQ Pork Sandwich with Vidalia Onion Rings and Coca-Cola Chili Dog were the top vote-getters. The first of its kind concession offers fans a total of five Coca-Cola -infused products and also features items produced in the state of Georgia. The Taste of Coca-Cola concession stand is located outside Section 123 in the fronstretch Earnhardt stands on Labor Day weekend, Aug. 31-Sept. 2, 2012.(AMS)(8-15-2012)

  • Josh Thompson performing concert after Kansas Nationwide race: Race fans will definitely make sure country newcomer Josh Thompson "Won't Be Lonely Long" when he performs a post race concert following the Kansas Lottery 300 on Oct. 20. The concert is a part of the Kansas Lottery 300 ticket and will take place in the Display Midway and will begin approximately 20 minutes after the checkered flag. Thompson is currently out on his Change is Comin' tour to promote his upcoming second album. Thompson released his debut album, Way Out Here, in 2010 and began selling out clubs while also mixing in opening dates for Brad Paisley, Hank Williams Jr., Lynyrd Skynyrd, Dierks Bentley and Eric Church.(Kansas Speedway)(8-15-2012)


    News from August 14, 2012

  • Watkins Glen TV Ratings: On the final weekend of the Olympics, ESPN's live telecast the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International on Sunday, Aug. 12, earned a 3.3 household coverage rating (2.8 U.S. rating), averaging 4,472,687 viewers, according to the Nielsen Company. Last year's race was rained out and run on a Monday. The 2010 race was run and telecast as scheduled and earned a 3.6 household coverage rating while not airing on an Olympics weekend.(ESPN), see past race TV Ratings, 4-year comparison chart and more on the 2012 TV Ratings page.(8-14-2012)

  • Newman / SHR announcement next week? UPDATE denied
    #39-Ryan Newman is expected to remain at Stewart-Haas Racing with additional support from sponsor Quicken Loans. An announcement could come as early as next week.(FoxSports)(8-13-2012)
    UPDATE: A team spokesman said Monday that no announcement is scheduled, but reiterated that the team is focused on re-signing Newman and new sponsors. "Negotiations regarding retaining Ryan Newman as the driver of the #39 car are ongoing, as are discussions with various brands to partner with Stewart-Haas Racing and the #39 team," SHR spokesman Mike Arning said in an email. "Stewart-Haas Racing continues to negotiate with one driver and one driver only for the #39 car, and that driver is Ryan Newman."(Sporting News)(8-14-2012)

  • Penske hopes to name #22 driver by Chicago UPDATE Logano the favorite? Roger Penske hopes to name a driver for his #22 NASCAR Sprint Cup entry [will be Ford] for the 2013 season before the Chase for the Sprint Cup begins at Chicago on Sept. 16. "I've got five or six people that have contacted us," Penske said prior to the Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen on Sunday. "We're going to see how Sam (Hornish Jr.) does. We have a certain amount of loyalty to him. We're trying to assess where we're at." Penske says he's pleased with Hornish's progress in the #22 Dodge. Hornish replaced AJ Allmendinger on July 7 after Allmendinger tested positive for amphetamine. Hornish has posted two top-20 finishes in the Cup car. His best result was 16th at Indianapolis. Several free agents have been mentioned as candidates for the ride, including Joey Logano and Ryan Newman, who drove for Penske prior to joining Stewart-Haas Racing in 2009. As far Logano, who has been mentioned as a top candidate for the seat, Penske mentioned that the 22-year-old remains under contract to Joe Gibbs Racing.(FoxSports)(8-12-2012)
    UPDATE: Joey Logano appears to be the leading candidate to replace AJ Allmendinger at Penske Racing next year, but team owner Roger Penske says he has made no decision yet. Penske has had a couple of weeks to talk to candidates for the ride, but said Sunday he has made no decision. Logano has driven the last four years for Joe Gibbs Racing but the organization has not been able to put sponsorship together to keep him in a Cup car for 2013. Gibbs is expected to announce soon that it has hired Matt Kenseth to replace Logano in the #20 car for next season. Team officials have said they would like to keep Logano but fielding a full-time Cup car for him would depend on finding sponsorship to start a fourth team.
    Ryan Newman and Brian Vickers also have been mentioned as possible candidates for the ride, but Newman has said he is focused on staying with Stewart-Haas Racing and the team is working on sponsorship for next season.(Sporting News)(8-14-2012)

  • Johnson a presenter at the MSHFA Induction Ceremony: The list of motorsports stars set to usher in this year's inductees into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America, Wednesday, August 29, is as accomplished as the Class of 2012 itself with champion driver Jimmie Johnson and Hall of Famers Don "The Snake" Prudhomme and Bobby Allison scheduled to be among the inductee presenters at the black-tie event at the Fillmore Theater in Detroit. Johnson will present AMA Supercross and Motocross legend Ricky Johnson for induction in the Motorcycle category. Although unrelated, the two were competitors and remain close friends today from their youthful California off-road racing days that launched both to stardom. Hall of Famer and NASCAR icon Allison (Class of 1992) will present for the second-consecutive year after having the honor of inducting his brother Donnie Allison in 2011. This year, Bobby Allison will enshrine fellow "Alabama Gang" member, the late Neil Bonnett, into the Hall's stock car wing. Bonnett was one of the most affable drivers in NASCAR history, earning 18 series victories during his 18-year career. Additional NASCAR legends scheduled to present include Leonard Wood, a Hall member enshrined with his brother Glen Wood in 2000 as the leaders of the famous Wood Brothers racing team and pit crew. Leonard Wood will induct the late Vic Edelbrock, Sr. in the At Large category. Edelbrock was considered one of the founders of the American hot rod movement and built a small auto repair shop into one of the world's premier parts suppliers for racers and auto hobbyists. More info at mshf.com.(8-14-2012)

  • Facts and Notes Michigan International Speedway:
    · Michigan International Speedway sits on more than 1,400 acres in the "Irish Hills" of Southeastern Michigan. Ground-breaking took place on Sept. 28, 1967.
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan was held June 15, 1969.
    · The track was known as Michigan Speedway during the time Roger Penske was the primary owner (1996-99).
    · The 2-mile speedway underwent a repave this season.
    · There have been 86 NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Michigan International Speedway since the first race there in 1969. Other than 1973, which had just one race, there have been two races each season since 1969.
    · The first race was 500 miles in length; the second was scheduled for 600. The track was re-measured to 2.04 miles for the last race in 1970 and both races in 1971  with the race distance being 402 miles. All other races have been scheduled for 400 miles.
    · Donnie Allison won the first pole.
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race was won by Cale Yarborough.
    · There have been 42 different pole winners, led by David Pearson with 10. Mark Martin has five poles.
    · 34 different drivers have won races, led by David Pearson (nine); 20 drivers have more than one victory at Michigan.
    · The race winner has started from the pole 16 times, the most productive starting position. Brian Vickers (August, 2009) was the last driver to win from the pole.
    · 66 of 86 races have been won from a top-10 starting position, including 46 from the first four spots.
    · The deepest in the field a race winner has started was 32nd, by Mark Martin in the June race of 2009.
    · The Wood Brothers and Roush Fenway Racing both have 11 wins, more than any other car owners.
    · Carl Edwards and Matt Kenseth are the only drivers to average a top-10 finish. Edwards, who has two Michigan wins, has an average finish of 8.3. Coincidentally, Edwards' first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start came at Michigan. Kenseth, who also has two victories, has an average finish of 9.2.
    (NASCAR)(8-14-2012)

  • Radio Host Paul W. Smith to Serve as Honorary Starter at MIS: One of Michigan's most recognizable voices, radio host Paul W. Smith, will take on the role of honorary starter for the Pure Michigan 400 on August 19 at Michigan International Speedway. Smith is the morning drive-time host on News/Talk 760 WJR in Detroit. Smith will also receive a pace car ride from NASCAR's official pace car driver and attend the NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers' meeting.(MIS)(8-14-2012)

  • VFW to Salute America's Military Heroes at MIS: As America's oldest and largest major combat veterans' organization, the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) is proud to announce their line-up of military support programs and activities for the VFW 200 NASCAR race weekend at Michigan International Speedway (MIS), August 16-19. This year marks the fourth year of the MIS-VFW partnership, including three years as the title sponsor of the VFW 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. The sponsorship at MIS allows the VFW a national platform to recognize and salute veterans as well as raise awareness about the urgent needs of U.S. military personnel and their families. In addition to the VFW 200 race, the VFW and the VFW Foundation have several programs and activities planned at MIS to raise awareness and funds to meet the needs of America's active and retired military, their families and communities. More info at mispeedway.com.(8-14-2012)

  • MIS and NASCAR take Fan Appreciation to new heights: Besides seeing 200 MPH speeds at NASCAR's fastest track, fans will want to visit MIS for Gatorade Pole Day because you just might be awarded a once in a lifetime opportunity. Michigan International Speedway continues to expand its Fan Appreciation Program and its commitment to ensuring a memorable experience to each guest. All fans that have purchased a Pit Pass for Friday, Aug. 17 are invited to attend a driver question and answer session. It will begin at 5:30 p.m. and will be held in the reserved parking lot behind the Pit Road Suites. Look for the big stage and arrive early to secure your spot to be close to all the action. Dale Earnhardt, Jr., the winner of the Quicken Loans 400 and current leader in the points championship race, is scheduled to partake in the event. In fact, his last two wins at in the Sprint Cup series have occurred at MIS. He will be joined on stage by Matt Kenseth, who just happens to be second in the points race. Carl Edwards, the runner-up in the 2011 points championship, will also take questions from the fans. In addition, be on the lookout for MIS staff, including track President Roger Curtis, who will be passing out special garage passes to 300 lucky fans throughout the week. These guests will have the opportunity to watch the Q&A session from a special VIP session located right in front of the stage. Those fans will then have the exclusive opportunity to tour the Sprint Cup garage until 6:30 p.m. when it closes and to observe the teams working on the cars as they prepare for the Pure Michigan 400 on Sunday, Aug. 19. The excitement is not limited to the Sprint Cup Garage. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series garage will be open from 4-5 p.m. The MIS staff will present 200 guests with a ticket that can be redeemed for a wristband at Gate 55A in the infield. These fans will also be invited to an autograph session with the truck series drivers in the garage area. The fan appreciation program does not stop there. Paul Menard, Joey Coulter, Ty Dillon and Nelson Piquet, Jr. will take the fans on a thrill ride they will soon not forget. The 125 guests with a hot lap ride ticket presented by MIS staff will get to take a ride around the fastest track in NASCAR. Tickets are on sale at MISpeedway.com or by phone at 800-354-1010.(MIS)(8-14-2012)


    News from August 13, 2012

  • The Entry List for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is posted, 45 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including:
    Not in top 35 of owners points:
    #19-Jason Leffler(i)(45/16)
    #21-Trevor Bayne(i)(37/8)(2011 Race Winner)
    #23-Scott Riggs (44/20)
    #26-Josh Wise (40/22)
    #30-David Stremme (38/22)
    #33-Stephen Leicht (36/22)
    #37-J.J. Yeley (53/7)
    #87-Joe Nemechek(i)(42/22)
    #91-Reed Sorenson(i)(55/2)
    #98-Mike Skinner (41/22)
    In the event that qualifying is cancelled:
    the eight who would make it [8]: #'s 21,33,30,26,98,87,23,19
    missing the race would be [2]: #'s 37,91
    See the full entry list at my Jayski's Pocono Entry List

  • Kligerman to help Hornish Jr. at MIS: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Parker Kligerman will have a full schedule behind the wheel ahead of him at Michigan International Speedway this weekend as he makes his first start for Red Horse Racing in the Truck Series. Aside from his inaugural run in the #7 Tundra for the NCWTS event, Kligerman will also fill in during NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice and qualifying in the #22 Pennzoil/Shell Penske Racing Dodge. Kligerman, who was scheduled for this fill in position prior to signing with Red Horse this week, knows that he will have less time on his hands, but is confident he will have no issues balancing both schedules. "I've done a lot of testing in the cup car before so it should be a seamless transition. Aside from having little time between practice sessions, there should be no issues with the schedule. I'm a professional race car driver and my job at the end of the day is just worry about driving as fast as possible, so that's what I'm going to do," said Kligerman.(Red Horse Racing)(8-13-2012)

  • McMurray re-signs with Ganassi UPDATE: #1-Jamie McMurray confirmed Saturday that he has signed a contract extension with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing for 2013. "I'm set for here," McMurray said after qualifying at Watkins Glen International. "It's done. I haven't really made a big deal about it. Drivers take different approaches to that. Some like all the publicity taking about. I don't. & But everything is set for next year and I'm excited to be back here." McMurray didn't say how long his extension runs, but he apparently didn't test the free-agent market. Ganassi officials would not confirm nor deny that McMurray signed an extension. It is Ganassi policy not to comment on contracts.(Sporting News)(8-12-2012)
    UPDATE: a quote by #1-Jamie McMurray after his accident at Watkins Glen on August 12th.
    Q) YOU HAVE EXTENDED YOUR CONTRACT WITH EGR?
    McMurray: "It's been since May when that all went down. I haven't really talked about it. Nobody asked me and I didn't really volunteer it. You watch guys the way they handle that. Some like to make it very public and then there are others that just kind of go about their business."(Team Chevy Race Notes and Quotes)(8-13-2012)

  • Richard Petty talks about Ford Richard Petty said Sunday after his driver, #9-Marcos Ambrose, won at Watkins Glen that his company would have to renegotiate with Ford after the season. "I seen some of the Ford people there today. I told them, `Me and Marcos won the race.' I had the contract in my pocket. I was going to let them sign it right there. I don't think it went over too good."(Associated Press)(8-13-2013)

  • Newman / SHR announcement next week?
    #39-Ryan Newman is expected to remain at Stewart-Haas Racing with additional support from sponsor Quicken Loans. An announcement could come as early as next week.(FoxSports)(8-13-2012)

  • Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 2012 Finger Lakes 355 at the Glen: 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 1:02 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 3:39 PM (all times are EST). Did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. ESPN was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 95
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 57
    Number of 'Side-by-Side' commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 0
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast: 26
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 3 min. 35 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 1:02 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 3:39 PM
    Total minutes of race broadcast: 157
    Minutes of race broadcast: 114
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 43
    Minutes of 'Side-by-Side' commercials (split-screen): 0
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of 'mystery cautions' (debris not shown): 0
    Total race brdcst time 114 Total comm. brdcst time 43
    See past races, sponsor links on the TV Commwecials page.(8-13-2012)

  • Sad News - Jerry Grant: Jerry Grant, a 10-time competitor in the Indianapolis 500 and the first person to turn an official lap faster than 200 mph in an Indy car, died Sunday, Aug. 12. He was 77. Grant, a prominent American road racer, turned his historic 201.414-mph lap in 1972 at Ontario, Calif. But he is probably best remembered for nearly winning the 1972 Indianapolis 500. Grant led at the 188-lap mark when he had to pit to replace a tire which was losing air. Instead of pitting in his stall, he went to the adjoining one of Unser, who had retired much earlier in the day. Whether or not Grant actually took on any fuel from Unser's refueling tank is up for discussion, but the hoses were momentarily hooked up, and it became known that the tank in his own pit was apparently empty, the maximum allotment of 275 gallons having been exhausted. While Grant did finish the 500 miles, taking the checkered flag in second place behind Mark Donohue, officials subsequently disallowed Grant's final 12 laps, thus dropping him from second to 12th. Grant also raced in 19 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races from 1965-1974 with two top-five finishes in cluding the 1967 Daytona 500.(IMS)(8-13-2012)

  • Sad News - Lois Tyler: Lois J. Tyler, 81, of Pennsylvania, passed away Thursday (Aug. 9, 2012) at the Kane Community Hospital following a brief illness. She was married Carl A. Tyler, who passed away Jan. 6, 1993. Along with many other jobs, she also worked in her husband's mechanic business in Daytona Beach and Murphy, N.C. She spent many years as a NASCAR Legends Driver. Lois and her husband were active and involved with NASCAR for their entire life. Lois Tyler participated in the NASCAR Women's National Championship Compact Car Race held January 31, 1960, at the Daytona International Speedway. Lois drove the #69 Studebaker Lark coupe. The racecourse for this race consisted of both the oval track as well as the road course. Lois finished 7th out of 7 entries. Lois has a lifelong interest in automobile racing. Her father, Ray Schimp, was a race track owner in Bradford. He opened a quarter mile racetrack in 1953. In 1957 the track was relocated and expanded to a half mile in length. Ray remained active in the operation of the track into the 80's. Lois was a scorer for Richard Petty at Daytona for 17 years. She was an active member of the Living Legends of Auto Racing club. Lois' husband, Carl Tyler raced for 25 years. He began in Pennsylvania, raced in the NASCAR Grand National Division, the last race on the beach, 1958, and the first Daytona 500 at the new speedway, in 1959. Carl raced in the NASCAR Sportsman Division from 1960 through 1969. He continued to race on area tracks in Florida until 1978. Carl races 12 Sprint Cup Series race in 1958-1959 with a best finish of 11th at Wilson Speedway.
    Service info, online condolences and obituary can be found at www.framefuneralhome.com.(Bradford Era)(8-13-2013)

  • Sad News - Buck Simmons: Buck Simmons,66 , winner of over 1,000 feature events in a career that spanned over five decades, passed away Sunday [August 12th] morning. Simmons, a member of both the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame and the National Dirt Racing Hall of Fame, was born July 31, 1946. Simmons competed several times in the famed Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, FL in the seventies, with his best effort coming in 1977, when he finished second to fellow Georgia Racing Hall of Famer Ronnie Sanders. Simmons competed on the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit in several events (eight) in 1979 and 1980, including events at Atlanta, Ontario, Rockingham, Bristol, Darlington, Martinsville, Talladega. He also competed in events in what is now known as the K&N Pro West Series, at Phoenix and Ontario, the latter of which he won the pole for.(more at Raceweek Illustrated), for services and obituary, go to mcgaheegriffinandstewart.com.(8-13-2013)


    News from August 12, 2012

  • Marcos Ambrose wins at Watkins Glen: #9-Marcos Ambrose won the Finger Lakes 355(k) at Watkins Glen International in one of the most dramatic, exciting road course finishes ever. #18-Kyle Busch led at the white flag when Busch got in some oil on the track [supposedly from the #47 Toyota] and slowed, #2-Brad Keselowski couldn't slow in the oil and got into the rear of the #18, spinning the #18. Keselowski and Ambrose then raced to the checkered flag, beating and banging, running thru the grass with Ambrose getting by Keselowski and winning his 1st race of the year, 2nd at Watkins Glen and 2nd career win.
    #2-Keselowski finished 2nd followed by #48-Johnson, #15-Bowyer, #22-Hornish Jr., #16-Biffle, #18-Busch, #17-Kenseth, #78-Smith and #56-Truex Jr. #24-Gordon was running in 10th when he got in fluid/oil and spun out into the guardrail, finishing 21st.
    The points leader coming into the race, #88-Earnhardt Jr. was running 10th when he spun off turn 5, had to pit for tires and finished 28th. #48-Johnson took over the points lead by 1 point over #16-Biffle with #88-Earnhardt Jr. falling to 4th.
    #18-Busch led the most laps on the day with 43 of 90 laps, finishing 7th.
    Pole sitter #42-Montoya finished 33rd after something broke in the left front of the car early in the race.
    There were 4 cautions for 13 yellow flag laps. There were 10 lead changes among 5 drivers. The average speed was 98.145mph.
    The estimated attendence was 90,000 up over last years race which was held on Monday after being rained delayed a day but still had an estimated crowd of 85,000.
    See race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Watkins Glen Race Results page (pdf).(8-12-2012)

  • Race Fast Facts - Watkins Glen:
    #9-Marcos Ambrose won the 27th Annual Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen, his second victory in 141 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his first victory and sixth top-10 finish in 2012.
    This is his second victory and fifth top-10 finish in five races at Watkins Glen International.
    #2-Brad Keselowski (second) posted his second top-10 finish in three races at Watkins Glen International. It is his 12th top-10 finish in 2012.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson (third) posted his sixth top-10 finish in 11 races at Watkins Glen International.
    #33-Stephen Leicht (26th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson leads the point standings by 1 point over #16-Greg Biffle.(NASCAR Statistics)(8-12-2012)

  • 2012 Sprint Cup Driver Championship Points Standings:
    [after Watkins Glen, race 22 of 36]
    1) #48-Jimmie Johnson [3 wins], 777
    2) #16-Greg Biffle [1 win], 776, -1
    3) #17-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 775, -2
    4) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [1 win], 760, -17
    5) #2-Brad Keselowski [3 wins], 733, -44
    6) #56-Martin Truex Jr. [0 wins], 728, -49
    7) #15-Clint Bowyer [1 wins], 719, -58
    8) #14-Tony Stewart [3 wins], 716, -61
    9) #29-Kevin Harvick [0 wins], 710, -67
    10) #11-Denny Hamlin [2 wins], 693, -84
    Current wild card Chase drivers:
    WC1) #5-Kasey Kahne [2 wins, 11th in points]
    WC2) #39-Ryan Newman [1 win, 13th in points]
    (ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
    See drivers championship points standings on the Drivers Points Standings (pdf).(8-12-2012)

  • 2012 Sprint Cup Driver Chase Wild-Card Race:
    [after Watkins Glen, race 22 of 36]
    A look at the race for the two wild-card positions for the Chase based on wins and being inside the top 20 in points.
    Driver [wins] standings, behind 10th
    first two would make the chase as wild cards:
    #5-Kasey Kahne [2 wins] 11th -40 points out of 10th
    #39-Ryan Newman [1 win] 13th -49
    eight other drivers currently in the running for the wild cards:
    #18-Kyle Busch [1 win] 14th -55
    #24-Jeff Gordon [1 win] 15th -59
    #9-Marcos Ambrose [1 win] 17th -93
    #20-Joey Logano [1 win] 18th -106
    these drivers have no wins but are in the top-20
    #99-Carl Edwards 12th -43
    #27-Paul Menard 16th -64
    #31-Jeff Burton 19th -152
    #1-Jamie McMurray 20th -152
    (ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
    The Chase: The top-10 drivers will make the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Positions 11 and 12 in the 12-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup are Wild Cards, and will go to drivers outside the top 10 with the most wins, as long as they are ranked in the top 20 in points. If multiple drivers outside the top 10 tie for wins, the tie-breaker will go to the race winner with the highest points position.
    See drivers championship points standings on the Drivers Points Standings (pdf).(8-12-2012)

  • Top-35 in Owner Points and guaranteed a starting spot at Michigan:
    #36 remains in 35th and is now 82 points ahead of 36th, the #33 team.
    Rank) Car#-Driver/Team, owners pts, +/-
    32) #83-Cassill/BK Racing, 332 +131
    33) #32-Schrader/FAS Lane Racing, 313 +112
    34) #10-Reutimann-Patrick/Baldwin, 309 +108
    35) #36-Blaney/Baldwin, 283 +82 ahead of 36th
    these teams / drivers will need to qualify by speed:
    36) #33-Leicht/Childress-Falk, 201, -82 from the top 35
    37) #21-Bayne/Wood Bros., 161, -122
    38) #30-Stremme/Inception, 157, -126
    The teams are NOT locked in past the next race as the owners points change after each race.
    For the owner points standings, see the Owners Points Standings (pdf).(8-12-2012)

  • Watkins Glen Notes-n-Nuggets:
    " Marcos Ambrose earned his second Cup Series victory in his 141st start, his second in a row at Watkins Glen.
    " Marcos Ambrose has finished in the top three in all five of his Watkins Glen starts.
    " Marcos Ambrose earned his first top-five finish of 2012 and became the 14th different winner of the season.
    " Marcos Ambrose led twice for eight laps, including a last-lap pass of Brad Keselowski.
    " Marcos Ambrose is 17th in points, one of six drivers 11th-20th in points with a victory.
    " This was the fourth career victory for Richard Petty Motorsports; three of the four have come on a road course.
    " Ford earned its third win of 2012, snapping a 14-race losing streak.
    " Brad Keselowski (second) matched his best Watkins Glen finish (set last season) to earn his sixth consecutive top-10 finish.
    " Jimmie Johnson (third) took over the points lead for the first time of 2012 with his 11th top-five finish, the most of all drivers.
    " Clint Bowyer (fourth) earned his fifth top-five finish of 2012 and first at Watkins Glen.
    " Sam Hornish Jr. (fifth) picked up his third career top-five finish in his 115th race.
    " Greg Biffle (sixth) had only his third top-10 finish in his 10th Watkins Glen start.
    " Kyle Busch (seventh) led three times for 43 laps, the most of all drivers, and got his seventh top-10 finish in a row at Watkins Glen.
    " Regan Smith (ninth) earned a second consecutive top-10 finish, both in the past two races.
    " Kasey Kahne and Ryan Newman are the wild card drivers; only 10 points separate Newman, Kyle Busch and Jeff Gordon for that last spot.
    (Racing Resources and Services -- Statistics Racing Recall / nascar.com)(8-12-2012)

  • added some schemes from Watkins Glen in August, including: #14 Office Depot, #17 Ford Ecoboost, #22 Shell / Pennzoil, #26 MDS, #27 Nemards/Rheem, #29 Budweiser - R-W-B, #32 Nendrickcars.com, #33 Chevy, #34 Scorpian Truck Bed Liners, #36 TMone, #38 ModSpace, #43 Smithfield, #47 Freightliner, #51 Phoenix Racing, #83 Red Burger King, #87 Genny Light Beer, #98 TRAQM.com (8-12-2012)

  • Penske hopes to name #22 2013 driver by Chicago: Roger Penske hopes to name a driver for his #22 NASCAR Sprint Cup entry [will be Ford] for the 2013 season before the Chase for the Sprint Cup begins at Chicago on Sept. 16. "I've got five or six people that have contacted us," Penske said prior to the Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen on Sunday. "We're going to see how Sam (Hornish Jr.) does. We have a certain amount of loyalty to him. We're trying to assess where we're at." Penske says he's pleased with Hornish's progress in the #22 Dodge. Hornish replaced AJ Allmendinger on July 7 after Allmendinger tested positive for amphetamine. Hornish has posted two top-20 finishes in the Cup car. His best result was 16th at Indianapolis. Several free agents have been mentioned as candidates for the ride, including Joey Logano and Ryan Newman, who drove for Penske prior to joining Stewart-Haas Racing in 2009. As far Logano, who has been mentioned as a top candidate for the seat, Penske mentioned that the 22-year-old remains under contract to Joe Gibbs Racing.(FoxSports)(8-12-2012)

  • Drivers absent of top-5's and top-10's: Three drivers have run ALL 22 races in 2012 but do not have a top-ten finish: #13-Mears, #38-Gilliland and #83-Cassill. Ten drivers do not have a top-five finish: the three without a top-ten and the following eight drivers: #27-Menard, #1-McMurray, #42-McMurray, #43-Almirola, #47-Labonte, #78-Smith and #34-Ragan.(8-12-2012)

  • McMurray re-signs with Ganassi: #1-Jamie McMurray confirmed Saturday that he has signed a contract extension with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing for 2013. "I'm set for here," McMurray said after qualifying at Watkins Glen International. "It's done. I haven't really made a big deal about it. Drivers take different approaches to that. Some like all the publicity taking about. I don't. & But everything is set for next year and I'm excited to be back here." McMurray didn't say how long his extension runs, but he apparently didn't test the free-agent market. Ganassi officials would not confirm nor deny that McMurray signed an extension. It is Ganassi policy not to comment on contracts.(Sporting News)(8-12-2012)

  • Kenseth still not talking about 2013 deal: #17-Matt Kenseth isn't exactly a man without a race team, but he still hasn't announced his deal for next year. It's a poorly kept secret that Kenseth will be driving for Joe Gibbs Racing in 2013, but sources have told the NASCAR Wire Service that Kenseth is embargoed contractually from announcing his new ride until a later date, perhaps before the end of August. Asked about the possible timing of the announcement, Kenseth was typically circumspect. "I would if I knew, but I don't know," Kenseth said. But is the deal for next year still in place? "I hope so," Kenseth said with a laugh.(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-12-2012)

  • Romney's fundraiser to be chaired by NASCAR CEO: Republican Mitt Romney's Wednesday fundraiser in Charlotte will have a distinct NASCAR flavor. The event at the Duke Mansion is chaired by NASCAR CEO Brian France and his wife Amy. Co-chairs include NASCAR President Mike Helton and team owners Richard Childress, Rick Hendrick and Felix Sabates as well as driver Jamie McMurray. The fundraiser will be Romney's second appearance of the week in North Carolina. On Sunday he takes a bus tour with stops in Mooresville, High Point and Wake County.(Charlotte Observer / USA Today)(8-12-2012)


    News from August 11, 2012

  • Race Coverage of the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is scheduled for Sunday, August 12, 2012.
    Television (TV): ESPN at 1:00 pm/et; NASCAR Countdown Pre-Race show at 12:00 pm/et; green flag approx 1:18pm/et
    Radio: Motor Racing Network (MRN) and Sirius XM Satellite NASCAR Radio 90
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs:
    on ESPN2, Monday, August 13 at 1:00am/et
    on SPEED, Wednesday, August 15 at 12:00pm/et

  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International have been made.
    Pole sitter #42-Montoya chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #18-Busch took pit stall 37, the first pitstall with opening behind it.
    #48-Johnson, who starts 3rd took the 38th pit stall, the 1st stall with an opening in front of it.
    The 43rd and final pit stall was taken by #31-Burton, who starts 28th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on the Pit Stall Selection chart.(8-11-2012)

  • Montoya wins pole at Watkins Glen: #42-Juan Pablo Montoya won the pole for the Finger Lakes 355(k) Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International with a track record speed of 127.020mph for his 2nd pole of 2012 and 9th career pole. Montoya has not won a race from the pole position.
    #18-Busch will start 2nd followed by #48-Johnson, #2-Keselowski, #9-Ambrose, #39-Newman, #14-Stewart, #15-Bowyer, #56-Truex, Jr. & #1-McMurray.
    Five drivers faster then old Watkins Glen track record of 126.421mph [set by Kyle Busch in 2011]: Montoya at 127.020mph plus #18-Busch, #48- Johnson, #2- Keselowski and #9-Ambrose.
    #93-Kvapil wrecked on qualifying lap, hitting the wall in turn 7 and will go to a backup car.
    The go-or-go homers who made the race (8): #98-McDowell, #95-Speed, #87-Nemechek, #26-Wise, #33-Leicht, #19-Cook, #49-Leffler and #30-Long.
    The go-or-go homers who failed to qualify for the race (0): none, only 43 cars entered.
    See qualifying order, qualifying results, pole progression & starting lineup on the Watkins Glen Qualifying Page.(8-11-2012)

  • Qualifying Fast Facts - Watkins Glen:
    #42-Juan Pablo Montoya won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 27th Annual Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen with a lap of 69.438 seconds, 127.020 mph - a new track record.
    This is his ninth pole in 203 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his second pole and third top-10 start in 2012.
    This is his first pole in six races at Watkins Glen International.
    #18-Kyle Busch (second) posted his 12th top-10 start of 2012 and his seventh in eight races at Watkins Glen International.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson (third) posted his ninth top-10 start at Watkins Glen International. It is his 15th in 22 races this season.
    #26-Josh Wise (38th) was the fastest qualifying rookie.(NASCAR Statistics)(8-11-2012)

  • Happy Hour practice: for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest, notes:
    #18-Busch 127.458
    #42-Montoya 127.446
    #99-Edwards 127.412
    #9-Ambrose 127.163
    #56-Truex Jr. 127.095
    slowest: #19-Cook 117.406 & #26-Cook 120.898
    no speed: #30-Long, #49-Leffler
    notes: the was no TV coverage of this practice.
    See speeds and laps run on the Watkins Glen practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(8-11-2012)

  • Furniture Row and RPM looking to firm up manufacturer deals: Sprint Cup teams flirting with a move to Dodge will try to land other manufacturer deals for next season now that Dodge has decided to leave the sport after this season. Richard Petty Motorsports, a Ford team, and Furniture Row Racing, a Chevrolet team, both had contemplated moves to Dodge before the announcement Tuesday that the manufacturer will not field a Sprint Cup car next year. RPM fields cars for Marcos Ambrose and Aric Almirola while Furniture Row fields a car for Regan Smith.
    "RPM is still looking at all their options as far as manufacturers go," said Ambrose. "For the sport, Dodge pulling out was not a great thing. It's been really healthy to have four manufacturers in the sport. As a fan of NASCAR, I'm disappointed that Dodge has taken that choice. I understand it, though. For us, we're building to the future at RPM and I look forward to playing my part and helping them make good choices. It's exciting times for RPM."
    It would appear that RPM's options are limited. Chevrolet (13 cars) and Toyota (seven) appear to be content with their number of teams. RPM likely will return to Ford, but it has added Penske Racing to its lineup for next season. Furniture Row has a technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing for cars and Earnhardt Childress Racing Engines. "What it does is it allowed us get focused on what we're doing now and what we're doing for next year," Furniture Row Racing general manager Joe Garone said. "All of our contracts were open after this year. We're starting to meet with (Childress) this weekend and start working on that." Now that it has a good idea of its manufacturer situation, Garone said the team can also focus on Smith, who's contract is up after this season. "Now that that is behind us, we'll go into that process of evaluating where we're at, looking at the whole thing and trying to get everything done," Garone said.(Sporting News)(8-11-2012)

  • No more Cup races for Dillon in 2012, plans 7 in 2013: Whether or not Austin Dillon runs the #3 in the Cup Series, he does have a clear path to arrive there full-time in 2014. "What we're looking for next year is running the full Nationwide Series again and having about seven Cup races is what we're hoping to get done. If we can put it all together, it's gonna be a great year," Dillon said during an appearance with Ty on behalf of Atlanta Motor Speedway Tuesday. "This year has been awesome - we had one Cup race [finished 24th at Michigan in June in the #33 Chevy] and the radio blew up. Hopefully we'll finish this year out with a championship, so next year is just a lot of fun." Dillon made his Sprint Cup debut in the #98 Chevy last year at Kansas Speedway, finishing 24th, but says he has no more planned races this season, but, "It might change day-to-day. My grandfather comes up with things."
    Ty Dillon plans to join the Nationwide Series ranks after Austin leaves for Cup, but what number will he run, if he makes his way to the Sprint Cup Series and his brother indeed drives the famous #3? "Right now, I'm running the '3' in the Truck Series and having a lot of fun with it - with all the fans and seeing how excited they get. Last year, in the ARCA Series, I won the championship with the '41'. That number is dear to me and is also that my grandfather started out racing at Bowman-Gray Stadium. That means a lot to me, too, as much as the '3' does. Since Austin has started out taking the number '3' and made it his own, eventually the '41' will be my number."(WSB Radio Race Blog)(8-11-2012)

  • TMone joins FAS Lane Racing for the next three races: FAS Lane Racing announced that TMone has joined the team once again and will be an associate sponsor on the #32 Ford for the next three races of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule. The partnership encompasses the remaining events in August consisting of Watkins Glen this weekend, followed by Michigan and Bristol. TMone is a provider of domestic business services and customer relationship management (CRM) outsourcing.(FAS Lane Racing/Integrity Sports Marketing)(8-11-2012)

  • Stewart has leads most stats at Watkins Glen:
    In the last seven Sprint Cup races at Watkins Glen, Stewart has/is&
    The best driver rating (124.8)
    The best average running position (4.988)
    The most laps led (145 or 22.9 percent)
    The most fastest-laps run (105)
    The fastest driver early in a run (119.975 mph)
    The most laps spent in the top-15 (613 laps or 96.7 percent)
    The most quality passes (179)
    The second-best average finish (5.9)
    The second-best average green-flag speed (119.891 mph)
    The second-fastest driver on restarts (116.315 mph)
    The second-fastest driver in traffic (118.203 mph)
    The third-most quality passes (179)
    The third-fastest driver late in a run (119.741 mph)(SHR)(8-11-2012)

  • Kirt Manwaring to Serve as Grand Marshal for Finger Lakes 355: Elmira, NY native and former MLB catcher Kirt Manwaring will serve as Grand Marshal for Sunday's Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen. More accustomed to hearing "Play Ball", Manwaring will deliver another infamous sports phrase this Sunday at Watkins Glen International; "Start Your Engines!" Drafted in the second round of the 1986 MLB draft by the San Francisco Giants, Manwaring spent thirteen seasons behind the plate for the Giants, Houston Astros, and Colorado Rockies; retiring in 1999. Manwaring won a Gold Glove with the Giants in 1993 in his most prolific season, also collecting the Willie McCovey Award that year. Manwaring has been inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame at Horseheads High School where he was a baseball standout, ultimately receiving a full scholarship to Coastal Carolina University where he is also a Hall of Fame inductee. Tickets for the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen on August 9-12 are available by calling 866.461.RACE (7223) or online at www.TheGlen.com.(WGI)(8-11-2012)

  • Red Cat Summer Stage Friday Night Concert Line-Up Announced for Watkins Glen UPDATE: The Red Cat Summer Stage features a variety of acts for the Friday Night Concert of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen weekend, including rising country star Marlee Scott and Watkins Glen International favorites Mike Brindisi & The New York Rock. PRS Guitars welcomes The Rocky Mountain Stoneflies, Davy Knowles and the In Tune Magazine "Race to The Stage" winner. Live music continues to play a significant part of the fan experience during race weekends at The Glen. This year's edition of the Friday Night Concert provides fans a wide variety of genres to enjoy before leaving the track. The concert is included in all weekend admission tickets. Tickets for the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen (August 9-12) weekend are on sale now! Fans may purchase their tickets and camping by contacting the WGI ticket office at 866.461.RACE (7223) or logging on to the official website, www.TheGlen.com.(WGI)(8-8-2012)
    UPDATE: Due to rain and thunderstorms in the forecast, Friday's concert at Watkins Glen International, headlined by country singer Marlee Scott, was postponed. The concert has been rescheduled for Saturday night, following the completion of the Continental Tire 200, the Grand-Am Rolex Series Sports Car race. The race is set to begin at 6:18 pm/et.(8-11-2012)


    News from August 10, 2012

  • Coverage of Qualifying for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is scheduled for Saturday, August 11, 2012 at 11:40am/et.
    Television (TV): ESPN2, 11:30am/et
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: none

  • Qualifying Order for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is posted. 43 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers scheduled to go out is #30-Long, slowest in practice.
    The final driver scheduled to go out is #51-Busch, who was fastest in first practice.
    Qualifying order is set by the first practice session, with slowest driver going out by speed and the fastest going out last. The non-top 35 drivers are now mixed in with the top-35 in owners points, slowest to fastest.
    See the full qualifying order on the Watkins Glen Qualifying Page.(8-10-2012)

  • Friday practice: for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is over, after approx 60 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest, notes:
    #51-Busch 125.055
    #39-Newman 124.406
    #2-Keselowski 124.126
    #14-Stewart 124.120
    #24-Gordon 124.044
    slowest: #30-Long 117.743 & #19-Cook 119.645
    notes: the first practice was rained out so this practice will set the qualifying order. A Saturday morning Sprint Cup practice has been added, scheduled to run 8:00-9:25am/et, no word yet on any TV coverage.
    Qualifying is scheduled for 11:40am/et on Saturday, August 11th and to be aired on ESPN2.
    #31-Burton got his backup out and was up to speed. #11-Hamlin got his backup out and it started smoking, so he took it back to the garage. #30-Long lost an engine just after midway, leaving oil on the track, #11-Hamlin then wrecked and #31-Burton ran into the #11, the #11 and #31 will both go to backup cars. #18-Busch spun out off turn 5. #93-Kvapil spun out in turn one, was was able to drive on with no damage.
    See speeds and laps run on the Watkins Glen practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-10-2012)

  • Happy Hour practice: for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is coming up, the track is still being dried as of 4:25pm/et. The practice will be televised on SPEED.(8-10-2012)

  • 1st Friday practice: for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International was canceled due to rain. While Goodyear has wet tires at the track, it is just for the Nationwide Series cars, no plans to use wet/rain tires for the Sprint Cup Series cars at Watkins Glen.(8-10-2012)

  • Truex Jr. says contract is basically done: #56-Martin Truex Jr., who is on the final year of his current contract with Michael Waltrip Racing, met with members of the media at Watkins Glen International and discussed his contract situation:
    Q) How close are you to finishing up your contract extension with MWR?
    Truex Jr. "We're very, very close. I'm not going to say it's done, but it's basically done. I'm very, very happy about that. I guess, it's one of those deals where we had to work out some details, but there was never a time when the whole thought of going through contract negotiations again came up that there was never a thought of me saying what are my options, what am I thinking. There was none of that. It was how can we get this deal done and moving forward. We've come a long way. When you put that much work into something, you don't want to just say, 'Ah, I can do this somewhere else,' because it's not that easy. I've put a lot of effort into being part of that team, to help them build a program and they've invested a lot into me to be a part of that program. It's something that I felt we both wanted to continue and there was never any talk about whether we were going to try to renew it or not, it was what do we have to do to get this deal done from both sides. It was really probably the easiest - well it's not done yet - it's been a very easy process and we've really concentrated on racing and just kind of tried to do this on the side to get it done. It's been a pleasure to work with all those guys throughout not only this, but throughout the past three years and I'm looking forward to doing that for a long time to come."(Toyota NSCS Notes & Quotes)(8-10-2012)

  • Reutimann to JTG Daughtery Racing? UPDATE hearing that David Reutimann recently met with officials from JTG Daugherty Racing for a 2013 ride, either as a replacement for current driver Bobby Labonte or for a 2nd team car as JTG Daughtery Racing is looking to expand to a two-car team if sponsorship is found.(8-9-2012)
    UPDATE: "I'm not sure where this came from, but Bobby Labonte is the #47 driver," said JTG Daugherty Racing co-owner Tad Geschickter. "Bobby's done a great job for us and our sponsors. We are continuing to work on getting the right tools in place to help our team perform better."(JTG Daughtery Racing)(8-10-2012)

  • Genny Light Beer to be features on Nemechek's #87: Nemco Motorsports announced that Genny Light beer will be featured on the hood of Joe Nemechek's #87 Toyota for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Finger Lakes 355 at Watkins Glen International. "We're looking forward to having Genny Light as a sponsor this weekend at Watkins Glen," Joe Nemechek said. "Racing fans want a light beer that goes down smooth while they're hanging out in the stands." Genny Light is an American classic beer from The Genesee Brewing Company, based in Rochester, New York. Founded in 1878, The Genesee Brewery is one of the largest and oldest continually operating breweries in the United States. The Brewery makes the Genesee line of beers, including the iconic Genesee, the refreshing Genny Light, and the original Genesee Cream Ale. "We're excited to see the Genny Light brand printed across the hood of a racecar," said Janine Schoos, brand manager for Genny Light. "This is definitely a highlight for us." Please Drink Responsibly.(Nemco Motorsports), see images of the car on the #87 Teams schemes page..(8-10-2012)

  • 811 Promise on #22 at Watkins Glen: In celebration of National Safe Digging Day on August 11, the #22 Shell-Pennzoil car will carry a new "811 promise" logo during the Watkins Glen race, representing a request for fans to promise to call 811 before undertaking home digging projects. Fans that visit racetosouthbeach.com beginning on August 10 and make the pledge will be entered to win a VIP Race Weekend in South Beach during the final race of the season, and will be eligible for other prizes, such as Shell gift cards.(Shell/Tom Roberts PR), see images of the car on the #22 Teams schemes page..(8-10-2012)

  • The Entry List for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is posted, 43 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including:
    Notes: The #23 team is not entered; Patrick Long will drive the #30; Leffler in the #49.
    Not in top 35 of owners points:
    #19-Chris Cook in for Mike Bliss (44/15)
    #26-Josh Wise (40/21)
    #30-Patrick Long (38/21)
    #33-Stephen Leicht (36/21)
    #49-Jason Leffler (39/19)
    #87-Joe Nemechek (42/21)
    #95-Scott Speed (45/6)
    #98-Michael McDowell (41/21)
    In the event that qualifying is cancelled:
    the eight who would make it [8]: #'s 33,30,26,98,87,49,95,19
    missing the race would be [0]: none, only 43 entered
    See the full entry list at my Jayski's Watkins Glen Entry List

  • TMone to sponsor Blaney at Watkins Glen: TMone will jump on board the Tommy Baldwin Racing (TBR) #36 Chevy for the twists and turns at Watkins Glen International. Dave Blaney will drive the #36 Chevy in this weekend's Finger Lakes 355 at the Glen. TMone is a provider of domestic business services and customer relationship management (CRM) outsourcing. With locations in the Midwest and Northern Great Plains, TMone delivers new jobs to America's hometowns. Call center outsourcing is a people business, and TMone is in the business of augmenting and supplementing other companies human capital needs. "Obviously, New York is a great market to get promote the @TMone logo," said Anthony Marlowe, President of TMone. "The crowd at Watkins Glen International is sure to have a significant amount of executives and business owners in attendance this weekend, and that is our sponsorship activation target." TMone outsourced the company's marketing to TBR for 10 races this season. The BPO Company also sponsored one or more cars of various teams in all 21 NSCS races this season. David Reutimann drove to TBR's highest finish this season when he finished in 11th place in a TMone.com -backed Chevrolet in the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona.(TBR)(8-10-2012)

  • FAS Lane Racing Partners with Bully Hill Vineyards at The Glen: FAS Lane Racing announced that for the second consecutive year they have partnered with Bully Hill Vineyards for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at Watkins Glen International. Bully Hill Vineyards, New York's largest family owned winery, will be an Associate Sponsor on the team's #32 HendrickCars.com Ford piloted by road racing specialist Boris Said for the running of the Finger Lakes 355 (k). "It is awesome to form long term partnerships in this sport and we are pleased to be able to do that with the fine folks at Bully Hill Vineyards," stated FAS Lane Racing team owner Frank Stoddard. "They have such a long history of dedicated support in NASCAR and utilizing the marketing power it provides a company. The road course event at Watkins Glen is always a great show for the fans and we are honored to be able to represent a hometown company such as Bully Hill Vineyards."
    "We welcome the opportunity to continue our relationship with Frank Stoddard and his FAS Lane Racing team," said Sean King, Marketing Manager of Bully Hill Vineyards. "We enjoyed working with the team and driver Andrew Ranger in last year's Sprint Cup Series race at The Glen and we are excited to be on board the No. 32 again this year with Boris Said behind the wheel."(FAS Lane Racing/Integrity Sports Marketing)(8-10-2012)

  • There are five race tracks the Sprint Cup Series currently races at that #48-Jimmie Johnson has not won a Sprint Cup race at:
    Watkins Glen: 0 for 10 with a best finish of 3rd in 8/2007
    Michigan: 0 for 20 with a best finish of 2nd in 8/2011
    Chicago: 0 for 10 with a best finish of 2nd in 7/2004 & 7/2008
    Homestead: 0 for 11 with a best finish of 2nd in 11/2004 & 11/2010
    Kentucky: 0 for 2 with a best finish of 3rd in 7/2011
    plus Johnson ran five races at Rockingham Speedway and didn't win there.

  • Pocono Raceway Lightning Strike Update: A total of 10 race fans were struck by lightning in the Pocono Raceway parking lot after the conclusion of Sunday's Pennsylvania 400. All were transported to local hospitals with various degrees of injuries. Nine have been released. The tenth victim, Brian Zimmerman, was fatally injured during the storm. Private funeral services will be held on Saturday. Relatives and friends may pay their respects on Friday from 5:00PM - 8:00PM at the Thomas P. Kearney Funeral Home, Inc., 517 North Main Street, Old Forge, PA.(Pocono Raceway)(8-10-2012)

  • Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund set up: Pocono Raceway has established the Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund to benefit the victims of the lighting strike tragedy which occurred following the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway on Sunday, August 5, 2012. Donations will be accepted at any PNC Branch or by mailing checks/money orders, addressed to "Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund" to the following address:
    Pocono Raceway
    Attn: Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund
    1234 Long Pond Road
    Long Pond, PA 18334
    (Pocono Raceway)

  • The Numbers for Watkins Glen:
    0 - fewest cautions (7/18/65)
    0 - fewest lead changes (8/4/57)
    0 - races won from outside a top-20 starting position
    1 - fewest leaders (8/4/57)
    2 - fewest on lead lap at finish (twice, most recent 7/18/65)
    3 - most poles (Mark Martin, Dale Earnhardt)
    4 - fewest laps led by race winner (Ricky Rudd, 8/14/88)
    4 - drivers with more than one pole
    5 - most wins (Tony Stewart)
    5 - drivers with more than one win at The Glen (Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon, Mark Martin, Ricky Rudd, Rusty Wallace)
    6 - wins by car owner (Rick Hendrick)
    8 - number of jet dryers available for track drying this weekend
    9 - wins from the pole
    10 - most cautions (8/13/06)
    11 - most leaders (twice, most recently 8/13/06)
    11 - fewest cars running at finish (7/18/65)
    14 - most lead changes (three times, most recent 8/15/11)
    17 - different pole winners
    18 - different race winners
    18 - worst starting position for race winner (Steve Park, 8/13/2000)
    34 - most cars on lead lap at finish (8/14/05)
    36 - most caution laps (8/14/88)
    40 - most cars running at finish (twice, most recent 8/10/03)
    83 - laps led by race winner (Tony Stewart, 8/14/05)
    120 minutes - approximate amount of time it takes to dry the 2.45-mile track
    2012 Caution Update
    1 - fewest cautions this season (Fontana)
    5 - races extended beyond scheduled distance (Daytona1, Martinsville, Talladega, Darlington and Sonoma)
    10 - most cautions this season (Daytona1)
    111 - cautions in the first 21 races of 2012; includes 50 for accidents, 32 for debris and 12 for spins
    580 of 5,746 - laps under caution in 2012
    873.371 of 8,019.956 - miles under caution in the first 21 races
    (Darnell Communications for SRT Motorsports and Dodge)(8-10-2012)

  • Watkins Glen Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series will run the same tire at Watkins Glen this weekend . . . they will run the same tire code on all four tire positions . . . this is the same tire code that these teams ran at Watkins Glen last season . . . Sprint Cup teams also ran this code on all four tire positions at Infineon Raceway earlier this season, and on the right-side for the last two races at Martinsville . . . Nationwide teams have also run this code at Elkhart Lake in each of the last two seasons, and will run it at Montreal next weekend . . . as on all NASCAR road courses, teams will not run inner liners in their tires at Watkins Glen. Goodyear has also brought 675 wet weather radials to Watkins Glen for use by Nationwide Series teams only, should NASCAR decide that conditions warrant (Goodyear), see full notes, tire codes, tire pressures on the Watkins Glen Race Info page - Goodyear section.(8-10-2012)

  • Ernie Irvan's son wins a title: Third generation racer Jared Irvan capped off a great week of racing in is his #28 Ernie Irvan Racing Race2Safety USAC Ignite Midget by capturing the 2012 USAC Ignite Eastern Swing Points title. The Midland, NC native picked up a win at Ace Speedway in the 30 lap main event on August 3rd. He began the week with two runner-up finishes at Concord Motorsports Park in twin 50 lap features and finished with a 6th place run at Hickory Motor Speedway on Saturday night to garner the most points over the four events. "It was a great week", said Jared. "I can't thank my mom and dad (Kim and Ernie Irvan) and sister Jordan enough for their support along with my crew chief Ryan Scott. I have a great race car every event and feel like we can challenge for the win in every race" Irvan also leads the USAC Ignite Midget Eastern Points going into this weekend's long trip to Plymouth Speedway (IN) on August 10th and Grundy County Speedway (IL) on August 11th. Jared will battle against his Eastern rivals and the best of the Midwest on two tracks that he has never seen. "Jared is doing a great job adjusting to new tracks that we visit," said 1991 Daytona 500 winner and dad Ernie Irvan. "This weekend will be our biggest challenge to date as we not only head to racetracks we have never raced at but go into the backyard of the Midwest USAC Ignite Midget racers".(PR)(8-10-2012)


    News from August 9, 2012

  • Penske sons arrested for alleged break-in at Nantucket Yacht Club: Two sons of auto racing mogul Roger Penske [#2 & #22 Dodges in Sprint Cup Series, NNS teams and IndyCars team among others] were arrested early Thursday morning by island police for an alleged break-in at the Nantucket Yacht Club after two women claimed they had been assaulted in the club's parking lot. Jay Penske, 33, the CEO of the digital media company PMC who owns the IndyCar racing team Dragon Racing and the web site Deadline.com, along with his brother Mark Penske, 35, were arrested just before 2 a.m. Thursday on South Beach Street. According to a police report, the incident was initially reported as an assault and battery when two women approached police on Broad Street, claiming they had been assaulted by two men, later identified as the Penske brothers, at the yacht club's parking lot. Their parents, Roger and Kathy Penske, own a waterfront home on Nantucket in Pocomo. The Penske brothers were not available for comment, according to a person who answered the phone at their parents' home.(full story at the Nantucket Inquirer and Mirror)(8-9-2012)

  • Logano says he has two offers: #20-Joey Logano is mulling offers for two full-time Sprint Cup rides next year, including one to remain at Joe Gibbs Racing, and expects to make a decision soon. "I've got a couple of offers," the 22-year-old driver said on Wednesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, where he was promoting fall events. "I'm just trying to decipher what's the best for me. What's going to give me the most trophies and win the most races out of? I could be fairly close (to a decision). I could be a few weeks out. It all depends on the next couple of days, actually." Logano would not discuss the name of the other organization that has made an offer. The #22 at Penske Racing has been mentioned as a possibility since AJ Allmendinger was released following his suspension for failing a drug test. Penske Racing also might be considering adding a third team next year as it moves to Ford. Sam Hornish Jr. has been named Allmendinger's replacement for the foreseeable future. "There's only so many good teams out there," Logano said when asked directly about Penske Racing. He said he is not considering a part-time Cup ride. The Cup offer at Gibbs is dependent on finding sponsorship.(in part from ESPN)(8-9-2012)

  • Reutimann to JTG Daughtery Racing? hearing that David Reutimann recently met with officials from JTG Daugherty Racing for a 2013 ride, either as a replacement for current driver Bobby Labonte or for a 2nd team car as JTG Daughtery Racing is looking to expand to a two-car team if sponsorship is found.(8-9-2012)

  • Vickers returns to the #55: Few drivers have done more in less races this season than Brian Vickers has in Michael Waltrip Racing's #55 Toyota. This weekend Vickers makes his fifth start in the #55 driving the MyClassicGarage Toyota. He owns two top-five finishes and has completed every lap in the four races he's run in 2012 for the Rodney Childers' led team. Vickers has finished no worse than 18th. Vickers will drive the #55 in eight races this season sharing driving duties with Michael Waltrip and Mark Martin. The car is 13th in owner points. Scott Miller, MWR's vice-president of competition, said Vickers' effort in 2012 is one of the many reasons for MWR's improvement. All three fulltime Sprint Cup teams are in the top-13 in owner points with Martin Truex Jr. and Clint Bowyer battling for berths in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.(MWR), see images of the MyClassicGarage scheme on the #55 Team Schemes page.(8-9-2012)

  • Ford EcoBoost returns for Kenseth: #17-Matt Kenseth may never lay claim to being 'King of the Road' when it comes to turning left and right in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, but the 2003 series champion isn't about give up trying as he prepares for Sunday's annual Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen. In 25 career road course starts, Kenseth is still looking for his first victory and first top-five finish. In the only other such event this season at Sonoma in June, the Wisconsin native finished 13th but this figures to be tougher for Kenseth, who has only three top-10 performances in 12 all-time appearances at famed Watkins Glen International. Besides trying to get his initial victory on a road course, Kenseth will also be looking to get the #17 EcoBoost Ford Fusion its first series triumph. This is the seventh time in 2012 that Kenseth will be carrying the EcoBoost brand, which is in the midst of a global motorsports marketing campaign to raise its visibility among fans.(Ford Racing), see images of the scheme on the #17 Team Schemes page.(8-9-2012)

  • #83 switches to red scheme: Landon Cassill's #83 Toyota will be sporting a fresh coat of paint this week. The Burger King/Dr Pepper car is clad in red instead of the typical grey and white scheme. The red scheme will gradually transition as Cassill's primary colors for the rest of the season. This week's Finger Lakes 355 at Watkins Glen International will mark Landon Cassill's second-career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start on a road course. Cassill has one previous start at Watkins Glen, which came in 2008 Nationwide Series competition. It yielded a 31st-place finish.(BK Racing)(8-9-2012)

  • Final race for #29 Red, White & Blue scheme: For the sixth and final time this season, the #29 Budweiser Chevy of Kevin Harvick will sport the patriotic colors of Budweiser's "Red, White and Blue Summer" packaging featured on bottles and cans of the King of Beers, found at various locations this summer. As we enter the final weekend of the 2012 London Olympics, the #29 Budweiser team will be keeping tabs on Dennis Bowsher, a member of the U.S. Army who will represent Team USA in the men's modern pentathlon competition on Saturday, August 11.. Bowsher helped teach the #29 Budweiser team the basics of fencing when the crew visited the U.S. Olympic Complex in Colorado Springs, Colo., in June.(RCR), see images of the scheme on the #29 Team Schemes page.(8-9-2012)

  • ModSpace Returns to #38 Ford at Watkins Glen: David Gilliland is happy to have ModSpace back on the hood of his #38 Ford this weekend at the Watkins Glen road course. With the sponsor on the hood this season, Gilliland has had his best results, including a season-best 21st last weekend at Pocono Raceway. This weekend will be the sixth time the Front Row Motorsports sponsor will ride with Gilliland.(Front Row Motorsports)(8-9-2012)

  • Freightliner and Miller Share Primary Sponsorship of #47 at Watkins Glen: Two companies will be prominently displayed on Bobby Labonte's #47 Toyota Camry fielded by JTG Daugherty Racing this weekend at Watkins Glen International. Both Freightliner and Miller are positioned on the hood and other sections of Labonte's ride for the Finger Lakes 335 at The Glen on Sunday, August 12. "We are fortunate to have a group of tremendous sponsor partners at JTG Daugherty Racing," co-owner Tad Geschickter said. "We couldn't build the cars without the support of Miller Welders and couldn't transport them to the track each week without the support of Freightliner Trucks." Freightliner Trucks is a division of Daimler Trucks North America LLC, headquartered in Portland, OR. Miller Welders is a proud technical partner of JTG Daugherty Racing. Miller Electric Mfg. Co., with headquarters in Appleton, Wisconsin, manufactures arc welding and cutting equipment designed for manufacturing, fabrication, construction, aviation, motorsports, education, agriculture and marine applications. For a second week in a row, Labonte has Brian Burns calling the shots. "Brian Burns is very organized, works hard, is very smart and is a great member of our team," Labonte said. "Unfortunately, we haven't put him in the best position, but we are working on that. It's going to take a little time for us to reboot. We appreciate the support of our sponsors and fans during a transitional period."(JTG Daugherty Racing)(8-9-2012)

  • Watkins Glen Concession Stands to Feature Local Favorites: At this weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen, fans may taste a variety of regional food favorites such as Beef on Weck and Sahlen's Hot Dogs. Americrown Service Corporation, Watkins Glen International's catering and concessions, will incorporate local flavor into new concession items to represent the region and satisfy the appetites of hungry race fans. Beef on Weck, a Western New York staple, will be served with a side of horseradish and served up near the start/finish area as well as in Turn 1. Also from the Buffalo area, Sahlen's Smoke House Hot Dogs will be available throughout the concession stand locations. There will be a Sahlen's Dog House, located in the Budweiser Tiki Hut area that will highlight four varieties of Sahlen's Hot Dogs. Syracuse, NY will be represent by the world famous Dinosaur BBQ's Sensuous Slathering Sauce in the BBQ Pork Sandwiches available at multiple locations. Fans from Canada can visit the vendor row area and sample Canadian favorite  poutine  crispy french fries topped with gravy and cheese curds from Yancey's Fancy New York's Artisan Cheese. Fans are sure to find something for any appetite at any one of Americrown's 12 concession stands throughout the Watkins Glen International facility. A concessions map is available at theglen.com.(WGI)(8-9-2012)

  • Dinner and the Race for Four at Atlanta Motor Speedway for Only $159: Families or friends looking to save money while enjoying quality time together can do just that this Labor Day weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AdvoCare 500 on Sunday, Sept. 2 with the FANtastic Four Pack. The speedway's FANtastic Four Pack gives fans access to the race and dinner in one all-inclusive deal. For only $159, customers can get four tickets in the Lower Elliott Grandstand, plus four hot dogs and four Coca-Colas. Aside from dinner and the race, fans that purchase the FANtastic Four Pack gain many other perks. And fans will be treated to a free breakfast on Monday, Sept. 3 in the Nationwide Series garage. NASCAR night racing returns to Atlanta Motor Speedway on Labor Day weekend, Aug. 31-Sept. 2, 2012. Reserve your AdvoCare 500 tickets now. For more information, call the Atlanta Motor Speedway ticket office at (877) 9-AMS-TIX, (770) 946-4211 or visit atlantamotorspeedway.com.(AMS)(8-9-2012)


    News from August 8, 2012

  • Speed says he will run full time in 2013 UPDATE 28 races: Scott Speed said on SPEED's NASCAR Racehub that he and the #95 Leavine Family Racing team would run the full-time 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season in 2013.(8-8-2012)
    UPDATE Leavine Family Racing (LFR) announced that it has agreed to a contract extension with Scott Speed for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. Speed has committed to exclusively drive the #95 Leavine Family Racing Ford Fusion, effective immediately. "It's a big deal to go from a partial schedule to a relatively full-time deal [supposedly 28 of 36 races] for the 2013 season. It's the start of a bigger journey." Speed said. "Now is the time I need to give them 100 percent of my time and effort. No longer will I be competing in anything else other then the #95."
    "I am very pleased with the progress crew chief Wally Rogers and Scott have made this year. It is that progress, along with Scott's charisma and talent enhancing our team chemistry, that has resulted in our agreement to go to an exclusive relationship through the 2013 season," team owner Bob Leavine said. "We are using this commitment as a springboard to build on this year's chemistry for 2013," Dan Pikarsky, newly appointed vice president of business development said. "We are getting our business development team in place now to be ready for 2013. The people needed from the back to the front are all there and Scott is confident in that. Leavine Family Racing has proved to me that they are building and they are moving in the right direction. They are bringing in good people, and that intrigues me. They have their own funding, and they have built a business case. We are using that with Scott Speed to attract Corporate America."
    Speed, 29, made it clear from the outset that he had no plans to explore the free-agent market due to his loyalty to Leavine Family Racing. "As an organization, Leavine Family Racing and team owner Bob Leavine provide the resources I need to compete, and as a driver, that is the most important consideration," Speed said. "Every year the team has been built more and more. We've grown much this year as the first year, and now we are all committed to a third season. The team has proven to do more and more and I look forward to continuing this growing relationship into the future."(Leavine Family Racing)(8-8-2012)

  • Truex Jr. says contract with MWR is close: #56-Martin Truex Jr. was one of the four drivers who was involved in a 2013 NSCS Goodyear tire test at Martinsville Speedway on Tuesday, August 7, 2012, he was part of a Q&A and was asked about his contract status;
    Q) What is the status of your contract with Michael Waltrip Racing?
    Truex Jr.: "I think we'll announce it soon. We're really close -- there's no secrets to hide. We're just finishing up the details. I really never talked to anybody else or even really thought about going anywhere else. It's just one of those things where we were concentrating on racing, concentrating on putting all the pieces of the deal together during the week when we're not racing. Really, it's come together nicely. We're very close and we're excited about the future together."(Toyota NSCS Martinsville Notes & Quotes)(8-8-2012)

  • Edwards talks to fan injured by lightning at Pocono: Carl Edwards, driver of the #99 Fastenal Ford Fusion, took part in the test session at Martinsville Speedway Tuesday with the recently-approved 2013 NASCAR Fusion. Edwards stopped by the infield media center during the lunch hour to answer questions from the media. A couple were about the fans struck by lightening at Pocono:
    Q) CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THE WEATHER SITUATION ON SUNDAY AND IF THERE'S ANYTHING MORE THAT CAN BE DONE? WOULD DRIVERS BE IN FAVOR OF STOPPING THE RACE AND THEN RESTARTING IT AFTER THE WEATHER CLEARED?
    Edwards: "I spoke with one of the gentlemen in the hospital up there yesterday that was struck by lightning and he told me the story in detail about what happened to him and his friends and it sounded like a very terrible scene. I've read a little bit about it and I know there's a lot of discussion about what NASCAR should have done or the track should have done, but, I think, at the end of the day, it's Mother Nature and it's very difficult for anyone to take responsibility and say, 'We should have done this or done that.' It's something that I would have never expected. I walked right out from my hauler to my motorhome in the middle of that rainstorm and I ignorantly didn't think about the dangers that were there. I think we all maybe take that stuff a little too lightly. I have to tell you that after talking to that gentleman last night, Tony, my thoughts and prayers are with him and his really good friend who is pretty bad off. He's recovering and the family that lost their father, it's tragic. I think all of us would be willing to do anything we could do to prevent something like that from happening in the future. At the end of the day, this is sports. It's supposed to be fun. Everybody is going out there to have a good time and we need to do things the safest way possible. Tony is a really nice guy. To hear what happened at the track is pretty bad."
    Q) DID YOU TALK TO HIM ON THE PHONE?
    Edwards: "Yeah, I talked to him on the phone. He's a big 99 fan and the folks at Pocono got me in touch with him. The gentleman that lost his life, that's just really sad. I believe the way he told the story there were three guys that were injured. Tony, the guy I talked to was injured the least. His one buddy is pretty bad off and his other friend obviously lost his life. From what he told me, I don't want to speak for him or anything, but it was as big of a surprise to him that something like that happened. They didn't expect that and I don't think they saw anything coming. They didn't think there were at that big of a risk. It's just tragic."(Roush Fenway Racing)(8-8-2012)

  • Dream Come True: Richard Petty Super Fan Designs RPM #43 Car: This weekend, the Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) #43 Ford driven by Aric Almirola will once again showcase the black and "Petty blue" colors of the Smithfield paint scheme designed by longtime Richard Petty super fan Kevin Gates. The scheme, featured earlier this year at the Charlotte Motor Speedway during the All-Star race, will once again be on the track this weekend at Watkins Glen International Speedway. Gates, who has been a Richard Petty devotee for more than 25 years, used his graphic design skills to create an updated paint scheme for the legendary RPM car. On a whim, he sent the sketch to RPM sponsor Smithfield Foods who, in turn, decided to make his vision a reality by updating the scheme to reflect his design. The car then raced at the All-Star race in May at Charlotte. It now returns to the track this weekend and the base scheme will be used for the remainder of the Smithfield-sponsored race events in 2012. The opportunity to see his scheme on the track has been a dream come true for the humble 27-year-old Connecticut native.(RPM), see images of the scheme on the #43 Team Schemes page.(8-8-2012)

  • The Entry List for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is posted, 43 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including:
    Notes: The #23 team is not entered; Patrick Long will drive the #30; Jason Leffler will be in the #49.
    Not in top 35 of owners points:
    #19-Mike Bliss (44/15)
    #26-Josh Wise (40/21)
    #30-Patrick Long (38/21)
    #33-Stephen Leicht (36/21)
    #49-Jason Leffler (39/19)
    #87-Joe Nemechek (42/21)
    #95-Scott Speed (45/6)
    #98-Michael McDowell (41/21)
    In the event that qualifying is cancelled:
    the eight who would make it [8]: #'s 33,30,26,98,87,49,95,19
    missing the race would be [0]: none
    See the full entry list at my Jayski's Watkins Glen Entry List

  • Silver scheme for Johnson at Watkins Glen: At Watkins Glen, #48-Jimmie Johnson will be racing a special Cortez Silver paint scheme. Having already driven special Mountain Green and Dover White #48 Lowe's Chevys this year, this will be the third paint out that honors classic Chevrolet paint colors. "Cortez Silver" was used by General Motors on its Chevrolet vehicles for the 1969 and 1970 model years and was available on every model of passenger car that was built by Chevrolet during those years. In addition to Chevrolet, Buick Cadillac, Oldsmobile, and Pontiac also used this color for various models under different marketing names (Silver Mist, Platinum Silver, Palladium Silver, and Patina Silver). Check out the images above provided by of www.69pace.com to see Cortez Silver on some of these classic cars.(Lowe's Racing), see images of the scheme on the #48 Team Schemes page.(8-8-2012)

  • Who is Patrick Long? Patrick Long is listed as the driver of the #30 Inception Motorsports Toyota in the Finger Lakes 355(k) Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International this coming weekend [August 12, 2012). David Stremme is the regualr driver but Long, a road course driver, replaces Stremme for the road course race at Watkins Glen. Long, 31, is from California and has been a Porsche factory driver since 2003 and is a three-time ALMS GT2 Driver's Champion (2005, 2009, 2010). Long has also run the 24 Hours of Le Mans, 12 Hours of Sebring and Rolex 24 at Daytona. Long has run one Nationwide Series race at Road America in 2010 running the #90 Toyota for Eddie D'Hondt starting 7th and finishing 14th. For more stats and info go to patricklong.com.(8-8-2012)

  • Cotton Owens to be honored: On Aug. 11, NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Cotton Owens and former NASCAR announcer, promoter and track announcer Jimmy Mosteller, himself a Georgia Racing Hall of Famer, will be honored at the fifth annual Lakewood Speedway Reunion at the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame in Dawsonville, GA. Both men have ties to the legendary track and to racing in north Georgia. Owens won races at the track, and was a long-time supporter of the Ga. Racing Hall of Fame and racing related events in Dawsonville, GA, while Mosteller was a former announcer and promoter at Lakewood, along with being one of the founders of the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame.(raceweekillustrated.com)(8-8-2012)

  • Glory Foods, Inc. Lauches "Race To Feeding America" Campaign: Representatives of Glory Foods, Inc., have announced the company's sponsorship of a series of NASCAR races in which food and funds will be donated through its "Race To Feeding America" campaign to Feeding America  the nation's premier domestic hunger-relief charity  to support child hunger efforts. An initial donation of 43,000 pounds of canned goods from Glory Foods was made to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina, a Feeding America food bank in Charlotte, N.C. Charna said Glory Foods is sponsoring Front Row Motorsports entries in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events in Atlanta, Bristol, Tenn., and Charlotte and will donate to Feeding America enough money and canned food products to exceed its campaign goal of 500,000 meals to children nationwide. Glory Foods' sponsorship program includes primary sponsorship of two Front Row Motorsports entries: the #34 of David Ragan and the #38 of David Gilliland. The sponsorship includes a special head-to-head challenge for the Oct. 13 Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. "My teammate, David Gilliland, and I want to heighten awareness about the issue of child hunger right here in our own country," Ragan said. "In doing so, I hope we all become better stewards to children, one meal at a time." If either driver wins in Charlotte, Glory Foods will donate $1 million to Feeding America. As a thank you to fans for their coming support, they will be able to enter a sweepstakes at www.racetofeedingamerica.org to win two hot passes to the 2013 Coca-Cola 600 in May at Charlotte Motor Speedway.(Glory Foods)(8-8-2012)

  • Sad News - Brian Zimmerman: The man killed by lightning Sunday during the Pennsylvania 400 was a 41-year-old husband and father of three who was helping to pack items into a minivan when the bolt struck during a heavy thunderstorm. Brian Zimmerman of Moosic, near Scranton, collapsed and could not be revived despite the efforts of an off-duty paramedic and raceway firefighters who were nearby and witnessed the strike, according to the Monroe County coroner and raceway officials.(Morning Call)
    AND Brian Franklin Zimmerman, age 41, of Moosic, PA, died tragically and unexpectedly Sunday evening at Pocono Raceway. He is survived by his loving wife, the former Marion Jones. The couple would have celebrated their 6th wedding anniversary on August 12th. He is also survived by his three children, two sons, Cole Patrick and Chase Randolph, and daughter, Lana Christine, all at home. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Brian's name to a trust to Benefit the Family of Brian Zimmerman, care of Fidelity Banks of Northeastern Pennsylvania. See the full obituary for info and services at kearneyfuneralhome.com.(8-8-2012)

  • Sad News - Steve Parsons: Harold S. "Steve" Age 66 Died peacefully on August 6, 2012 with his family by his side. Born September 13, 1945 in North Wilkesboro, NC, Steve was a lifelong Detroiter who was proud of his North Carolina roots and spent as much time as he could "down home." Steve was preceded in death by his Parents, Harold and Hazel, and his brothers [NASCAR great] Benny and Richard. Steve operated Metropolitan Cab Company in Detroit for his entire adult life. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Michigan Animal Rescue League (MARL), Michigan Humane Society, or Shriners Children's Hospital. See the full obituary for info and services at modetzfuneralhomes.com.(8-8-2012)

  • Red Cat Summer Stage Friday Night Concert Line-Up Announced for Watkins Glen: The Red Cat Summer Stage features a variety of acts for the Friday Night Concert of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen weekend, including rising country star Marlee Scott and Watkins Glen International favorites Mike Brindisi & The New York Rock. PRS Guitars welcomes The Rocky Mountain Stoneflies, Davy Knowles and the In Tune Magazine "Race to The Stage" winner. Live music continues to play a significant part of the fan experience during race weekends at The Glen. This year's edition of the Friday Night Concert provides fans a wide variety of genres to enjoy before leaving the track. The concert is included in all weekend admission tickets. Tickets for the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen (August 9-12) weekend are on sale now! Fans may purchase their tickets and camping by contacting the WGI ticket office at 866.461.RACE (7223) or logging on to the official website, www.TheGlen.com.(WGI)(8-8-2012)

  • American Idol David Cook is Zippo 200 Grand Marshal: Platinum selling recording artist and American Idol winner David Cook will perform the National Anthem and give the command to start engines for the NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen International, Saturday, August 11. Cook rose to fame after winning the seventh season of American Idol in 2008. Since then, Cook has sold over one million records, tallied two platinum singles and produced two top-20 hits. As Grand Marshal for the NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200, Cook will deliver the most famous words in motorsports  the traditional call for drivers to start their engines. Additionally, Cook will perform the American National Anthem during the pre-race ceremony.(WGI)(8-8-2012)

  • Two bands headline Budweiser Acceleration Concert at MIS: A huge lineup of talent headlined by The Romantics and Fuel is planned for the Budweiser Acceleration Concert at Michigan International Speedway on Saturday, Aug. 18. Detroit's own The Romantics will headline the always popular and free post-race concert in Lot 10. The concert will begin shortly after the VFW 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. The concert is free for anyone with a VFW 200 race ticket. Joining The Romantics will be Fuel, The Last Nova and Ghosts of August. The Romantics cut their teeth on the Detroit streets with sound characterized by the MC5, the Stooges, Bob Seger and the Last Heard, Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels, the Rationals, SRC and the Underdogs. The band infused it with sincerity, irony, spontaneity and, of course, volume. They favored short hair, short songs and popularized red leather suits. The band has produced such songs as "Hey!...uh-huh!," "Talking in Your Sleep," "What I Like About You," "Little White Lies" and "I Can't Tell You Anything." Fuel will also take the stage for the Budweiser Acceleration Concert on Saturday evening. The band has sold more than 3.5 million albums in the United States and has scored a trio of top five singles, including "Shimmer," "Innocent" and "Hemorrhage (In My Hands)." Fuel has sold out tours all over the world, headlining venues and opening for Aerosmith, Kid Rock, Creed and 3 Doors Down. Fuel is primed to continue its momentum with its latest release, "Angels and Devils." The VFW 200 is at 12:30 pm. The concert will begin shortly after the checkered flag that afternoon. Ticket are on sale at MISpeedway.com or by phone at 800-354-1010.(MIS)(8-8-2012)


    News from August 7, 2012

  • Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund set up: Pocono Raceway has established the Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund to benefit the victims of the lighting strike tragedy which occurred following the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway on Sunday, August 5, 2012. Donations will be accepted at any PNC Branch or by mailing checks/money orders, addressed to "Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund" to the following address:
    Pocono Raceway
    Attn: Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund
    1234 Long Pond Road
    Long Pond, PA 18334
    (Pocono Raceway)

  • Dodge to Withdraw from NASCAR at Conclusion of 2012 Season UPDATE 2: Dodge is expected to announce its withdrawal from NASCAR competition following the 2012 season, multiple sources with knowledge of Dodge's plans told ESPN.com. Dodge is expected to hold a Tuesday press conference [August 7th at 2:30pm/et] to make the announcement. Attempts to contact multiple Dodge spokespeople for comment were unsuccessful or resulted in no comment. Dodge was faced with a rebuilding phase beginning in 2013, after Penske Racing -- the lone NASCAR organization to field Dodges since 2009 -- chose to leave the manufacturer in favor of Ford Motor Company beginning next season. This isn't the first time Dodge has chosen to leave NASCAR. The manufacturer pulled out of the sport in 1977 and didn't return until 2001. Since that time, Dodge has accumulated 55 Sprint Cup victories. (ESPN)(8-7-2012)
    UPDATE: SRT Motorsports announced that Dodge will withdraw from NASCAR competition at the conclusion of the 2012 season. Ralph Gilles, President and CEO  Street and Racing Technology Brand and Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC, made the announcement during a media teleconference call. The decision affects current involvement in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR Nationwide Series. Penske Racing currently fields two Dodge Charger cars in the Sprint Cup Series and two Dodge Challenger cars in the Nationwide Series. Penske Racing announced in February that it would end its partnership with Dodge, which started in 2003, at the end of the 2012 season.
    "We've spent an intense five months working to identify and evaluate all options for our future involvement in NASCAR," Gilles said. "A number of opportunities emerged, and our team worked diligently to put a structure together to fit our overall business and competitive objectives. While we have been pleased and enthused with the amount of interest from teams and sponsors over that time, in the end, we simply couldn't develop the right structure."
    Dodge has recorded 215 wins in the Sprint Cup Series, including 55 since 2001, and has been represented in the NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup seven of the eight seasons. In 2010, Brad Keselowski captured the NASCAR Nationwide Series championship driving a Dodge from Penske Racing.
    "It's an extremely difficult decision to know that we won't be there for our fans next season," Gilles added. "It's important to note that we have not lost focus on 2012 or the commitment to our partnership with Penske Racing in both the Sprint Cup Series and Nationwide Series this season." Keselowski currently is seventh in the Sprint Cup Series standings and has three wins in his quest to make the 12-driver Chase field for the second consecutive year. In Nationwide Series competition, Sam Hornish Jr. is locked in a four-way battle for the season championship.(SRT Motorsports)
    Transcript: see a full interview/Q&A transcript from Ralph Gilles, President & CEO, Street and Racing Technology Brand and Motorsports at srtmotorsports.com.(8-7-2012)
    UPDATE2 - Statement From Brian France about the Departure Of Dodge from NASCAR: "Dodge has been a great partner to NASCAR for many years, and they have been part of numerous memorable moments throughout our history," said NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France. "They made a business decision not to return in 2013, as they did in 1977 before returning in 2001. We wish them well and hope they again will choose to return to NASCAR at a later date. Our fans have a passion for cars and emotional connections to particular manufacturers, and that's why in 2013 we will debut new race car designs that are modeled after each manufacturer's production cars. This change is a direct result of feedback from our fans, who are the most brand loyal in all of sports."(NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications)(8-7-2012)

  • Pocono TV Ratings: In the second weekend of the Olympics, ESPN's live telecast of the rain-delayed NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway on Sunday, Aug. 5, earned a 3.3 household coverage rating (2.9 U.S. rating), averaging 4,448,849 viewers, according to the Nielsen Company. Last year's Pocono race, which was also rain-delayed but did not air against the Olympics, earned a 3.9 household coverage rating.(ESPN), see other 2012 race ratings, 4-year comparison chart and more on the 2012 TV Ratings page.(8-7-2012)

  • Allmendinger tested positive for Adderall: AJ Allmendinger tested positive for prescription Adderall, the suspended NASCAR driver told ESPN in an exclusive sit down interview Tuesday. Adderall is typically prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, Allmendinger said. He does not have ADHD and therefore had no prescription. He explained that he had been out in Louisville, KY, the Wednesday before the Quaker State 400 race at Kentucky Speedway, and was tired. A friend, Allmendinger said, handed him a pill and stated it was a workout supplement that would give him energy. Allmendinger ingested the pill. Two days later he was randomly-tested at the racetrack, a test he would ultimately fail. He said neither NASCAR nor its drug testing team from Nashville-based Aegis Labs would inform him of the specific substance in question until after the B Sample was tested July 24, only that he had tested positive for amphetamine. It was not until he was informed it was Adderall that he traced it back to that night in Kentucky. He said he does not abuse Adderall, rather that he took it just once. Allmendinger is currently going through NASCAR's Road to Recovery program, which he said he hopes to complete by the end of August. He said his case is being treated more as a stress-coping methodology than a drug rehabilitation (ESPN)(8-7-2012)

  • NASCAR schedules tests for 2013 cars - fans can watch - TODAY: Cup teams will have the 2013 model for an Aug. 7-8 test at Martinsville Speedway that is aimed at rules tweaks to make the cars lighter and help Goodyear develop tires with more grip to improve racing. The 2013 car also will be tested Oct. 4 at Talladega Superspeedway, Oct. 9-10 at Texas Motor Speedway and Oct. 18 at Kansas Speedway. Dodge is taking part in the tests. The manufacturer hasn't announced any replacements for Penske Racing, which will join Ford next year.(USA Today)(8-1-2012)
    UPDATE: Martinsville Speedway's grandstands will be open to fans free-of-charge for an August 7 and 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup Goodyear tire test at the historic half-mile oval. The test will feature the new 2013 Sprint Cup cars. The test session will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, with an hour break at noon. Gates will open at 8 a.m. each of the two days and will remain open until 5 p.m. Restrooms will be open both days, but concession stands will not be operating. Fans may bring refreshments into the grandstands.(Martinsville Speedway)(8-4/7-2012)

  • NASCAR evaluating weather policy: NASCAR and Pocono Raceway officials are investigating whether there is a need for emergency reaction policy changes to weather-related events following Sunday's tragedy at the 2.5-mile track. A 41-year-old man was killed and nine others were injured as a result of lightning strikes within minutes of the Sprint Cup race being called for severe weather. The incident raised the question of whether the race should have been called earlier to give the track time to evacuate the stands and everyone enough time to reach the safety of their cars or shelter. NASCAR spokesman David Higdon said NASCAR's attention to severe weather will be on "hyper alert" heading to this week's race at Watkins Glen. "But I will add we're always in that situation," he said. "Nobody had their guard down (at Pocono)." NASCAR doesn't have a hard and fast rule on how to react to severe weather. Higdon said that is left up to the individual tracks, and most don't have rules such as evacuating the track if lightning is within a certain radius of the facility. NASCAR officials made it clear that the safety of the fans in these situations ultimately is the responsibility of the tracks. The dilemma for tracks is they can have the best emergency plan, but the decision on when to stop the race is NASCAR's. As Ed Klima, the director of emergency services at Dover International Raceway, told the Associated Press, "it's very difficult to get people to leave if there's still cars going around the racetrack." The initial severe weather warning was issued to fans at Pocono at 4:12 p.m. NASCAR called the race and declared Jeff Gordon the winner at 4:54 p.m. The lightning strike that took the life of Brian F. Zimmerman of Moosic, Pa., while he was leaning against his car, took place at 5:01 p.m.(ESPN)(8-7-2012)

  • Roush says Penske will use Roush-Yates engines: UPDATES: Jack Roush says Penske has decided to run Roush-Yates Ford engines next season. Penske has said he will not be shutting down the 80-man operation he currently has, but it would seem unlikely that Ford would care for one of its star new players to also continue building Dodge engines on the side. A possible sale of that engine shop to Dodge itself has been speculated as the only logical solution.
    Roush: "Roger and I will cooperate on things that are in our common interests, and we will compete on things that reflect our need to be independent and justify our space on the race track. We've done the bulk of the work on the 2013 car; we did invite them to have a look at what we've done in concert with Ford, and made sure we had their blessing, along with the other Ford teams involved. The indication are -- though I don't know if the papers have been signed yet -- that he will use our engines. He does have a few things he does different with his cars and the way the engines are mounted; so we'll respect his experience and his package preference. Whether we wind up with the same package for all Ford cars or not is yet to be determined."
    Roush, asked about the possibility of Penske becoming a business partner with Roush and Doug Yates in the engine operations, said "There is no plan on the table for Roger for any ownership in the engine program. But I stop short of saying that would never be a consideration going forward."(MikeMulhern.net)(8-4-2012)
    UPDATE: Roush Yates Engines announced that it will provide Ford FR9 engines to Penske Racing beginning with the 2013 NASCAR season. Penske Racing announced earlier this year that it would be returning to Ford Racing in 2013 in the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series. "It's truly an honor to provide Penske Racing with Roush Yates Ford engines," said Doug Yates, CEO of Roush Yates. "I have always admired Roger Penske as a team owner and a respected businessman in our sport and beyond. I am looking forward to many wins, championships, and other successes in supporting the Penske organization." Penske Racing fielded Ford entries from 1991 through 2002. "Ford has been consistent in its belief that we will be stronger with one engine specification rather than continuing with an independent approach," said Tim Cindric, President of Penske Racing. "Roush Yates has a proven record and we are looking forward to many successes together."(Roush Yates)(8-6-2012)
    UPDATE 2: Penske Racing will switch to Roush Yates horsepower in its 2013 move to Ford in the Sprint Cup Series, but the team still is exploring ways to keep its 63 engine employees. Penske President Tim Cindric told USA Today Sports that still building motors for Dodge teams in NASCAR's premier series wouldn't be an option, though. "Relative to us, they said they're going in a different direction," Cindric said. "We don't see there being any more potential on the NASCAR side with Dodge." Cindric said Penske has explored sending some of its engine staff to Roush Yates, reassigning others within Penske Racing and perhaps pursuing engine projects in other series with the rest of the employees in a scaled-down engine room. "We feel our biggest asset wasn't the (horsepower) but the people," Cindric said. "That's a strong group of people we didn't want to break up."(USA Today)(8-7-2012)

  • At Watkins Glen International...
    • After several events were held on the streets of Watkins Glen, a permanent facility was opened in 1956.
    • The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race was in 1957, won by Buck Baker.
    • After a six-year absence, NASCAR returned to The Glen in 1964 and 1965.
    • After a 21-year absence, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series returned to The Glen, and has run one race a year there since 1986. This weekend's race will be the 27th running since its return in 1986.
    • There have been 29 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Watkins Glen International since the first race there in 1957.
    • Buck Baker won the first pole and race.
    • Tim Richmond won the first pole and race upon the series' return in 1986.
    • There have been 17 different pole winners.
    • The race winner has started first in nine of 29 races. The last race winner to start from the pole was Kyle Busch in 2008.
    • Mark Martin leads all drivers with wins from the pole with three in a row between 1993, 1994 and 1995.
    • 19 of the 29 races at Watkins Glen have been won from a top-five starting position.
    • 21 of the 29 races at Watkins Glen have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    • The deepest in the field that a Watkins Glen race winner has started was 18th by Steve Park in 2000.
    • 18 different drivers have won races, led by Tony Stewart, with five.
    • Jeff Gordon set the all-time NASCAR Sprint Cup record for road-course victories with his victory in 2001, his seventh on a road course. He has since won two more (both at Sonoma), for a career total of nine.
    • Three active drivers with more than one start have an average finish in the top 10: Marcos Ambrose (2.2 in four starts), Tony Stewart (7.0 in 13 starts), Carl Edwards (8.7 in seven starts), and Kyle Busch (9.2 in seven starts).
    • Two drivers have scored their first career NSCS wins at Watkins Glen International: Marcos Ambrose (08/15/2011) and Steve Park (08/13/2000).
    • Youngest NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Watkins Glen International winner: Kyle Busch (08/10/2008 - 23 years, 3 months, 8 days).
    • Oldest NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Watkins Glen International winner: Geoff Bodine (08/11/1996 - 47 years, 3 months, 24 days).(NASCAR)(8-7-2012)

  • Dover announces 2013 Sprint Cup dates: Dover International Speedway officials today announced its 2013 NASCAR race dates. Two tripleheaders of racing action will return to the Monster Mile on May 31-June 2, and Sept. 27-29, 2013. New next season, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series qualifying will return to its traditional Friday afternoon time on the schedule as it precedes that afternoon's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race in the spring and NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race in the fall. Both race weekends will again feature three days of action, including the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in the spring; and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in the fall. In addition, the Monster Mile's three-tier pricing program will return, rewarding fans with the lowest prices from the track and encouraging fans to buy early and save. The Monster Mile will again offer $10 junior tickets on Sundays for ages 14 and younger, which features seating in all four turns in 2013. That includes seven alcohol- and tobacco-free sections. For Friday and Saturday races, junior tickets are just $8 in all available seating sections. Also returning in 2013 is the "Design-it-Yourself" payment plan. Tickets for the May 31-June 2, 2013 race weekend are currently on sale. Fans can begin placing deposits on tickets for the Sept. 27-29, 2013 race weekend during Dover's Sept. 28-30, 2012 race weekend. Returning fans have the opportunity to renew their same seats for the 2013 race weekends. For tickets or to place a deposit, call 800-441-RACE.(Dover International Speedway), so far five 2013 dates have been announced, Daytona 500, Phoenix and Dover, see more info on the 2013 Schedule News page. The next season's Sprint Cup schedule is usually announced in late August / mid September range.(8-7-2012)

  • Michael Buffer particpating in Bristol driver intros: Driver introductions for the Sprint Cup races at Bristol Motor Speedway are unique in the sport - and for the upcoming IRWIN Tools Night Race Aug. 25, a couple of new twists have been added. Well-known ring announcer Michael Buffer, whose "Let's Get Ready To Rumble" catchphrase is known world-wide, takes part in driver introductions, adding his distinct voice to each driver's entrance from a stage in Turn 3 of the track. Fans have been involved pre-race ceremonies at BMS before, including introducing themselves before the drivers. This time, BMS guests get to determine who does it the best. Fans will be asked to vote, via the Sprint Unlimited Text to Vote, for the driver's introduction they like best. The winning driver then will receive $10,000 that will go to his or her favorite charitable organization. In the distinctive pre-race ceremony at Bristol Motor Speedway, Sprint Cup drivers select a specific song to make their entrance. Many become memorable, including Brad Keselowski's "Won't Back Down", and Tony Stewart's "How Do You Like Me Now?" The highlight of last March's ceremony featured Denny Hamlin dancing "The Dougie" on his way down the ramp.(BMS)(8-7-2012)


    News from August 6, 2012

  • Roush says Penske will use Roush-Yates engines: UPDATE: Jack Roush says Penske has decided to run Roush-Yates Ford engines next season. Penske has said he will not be shutting down the 80-man operation he currently has, but it would seem unlikely that Ford would care for one of its star new players to also continue building Dodge engines on the side. A possible sale of that engine shop to Dodge itself has been speculated as the only logical solution.
    Roush: "Roger and I will cooperate on things that are in our common interests, and we will compete on things that reflect our need to be independent and justify our space on the race track. We've done the bulk of the work on the 2013 car; we did invite them to have a look at what we've done in concert with Ford, and made sure we had their blessing, along with the other Ford teams involved. The indication are -- though I don't know if the papers have been signed yet -- that he will use our engines. He does have a few things he does different with his cars and the way the engines are mounted; so we'll respect his experience and his package preference. Whether we wind up with the same package for all Ford cars or not is yet to be determined."
    Roush, asked about the possibility of Penske becoming a business partner with Roush and Doug Yates in the engine operations, said "There is no plan on the table for Roger for any ownership in the engine program. But I stop short of saying that would never be a consideration going forward."(MikeMulhern.net)(8-4-2012)
    UPDATE: Roush Yates Engines announced that it will provide Ford FR9 engines to Penske Racing beginning with the 2013 NASCAR season. Penske Racing announced earlier this year that it would be returning to Ford Racing in 2013 in the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series. "It's truly an honor to provide Penske Racing with Roush Yates Ford engines," said Doug Yates, CEO of Roush Yates. "I have always admired Roger Penske as a team owner and a respected businessman in our sport and beyond. I am looking forward to many wins, championships, and other successes in supporting the Penske organization." Penske Racing fielded Ford entries from 1991 through 2002. "Ford has been consistent in its belief that we will be stronger with one engine specification rather than continuing with an independent approach," said Tim Cindric, President of Penske Racing. "Roush Yates has a proven record and we are looking forward to many successes together."(Roush Yates)(8-6-2012)

  • The Entry List for the Finger Lakes 355 Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is posted, 43 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including:
    Notes: The #23 team is not entered; Patrick Long will drive the #30; Jason Leffler will be in the #49.
    Not in top 35 of owners points:
    #19-Mike Bliss (44/15)
    #26-Josh Wise (40/21)
    #30-Patrick Long (38/21)
    #33-Stephen Leicht (36/21)
    #49-Jason Leffler (39/19)
    #87-Joe Nemechek (42/21)
    #95-Scott Speed (45/6)
    #98-Michael McDowell (41/21)
    In the event that qualifying is cancelled:
    the eight who would make it [8]: #'s 33,30,26,98,87,49,95,19
    missing the race would be [0]: none
    See the full entry list at my Jayski's Watkins Glen Entry List

  • Fans struck by lightning after race: UPDATES: Three fans were struck by lightning following the rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday at Pocono Raceway. According to a witness, they were struck outside the track. Track spokesman Bob Pleban confirmed that three people were injured and two were transported to a local hospital. One was treated at the track care center and released. Pleban said he could not release the names nor the condition of those injured, who were hit during a massive thunderstorm that forced the race to be halted after 98 of 160 laps.(Sporting News)(8-5-2012)
    UPDATE: Officials at Pocono Raceway say 10 people attending Sunday's NASCAR race were injured in a lightning strike in the parking lot behind the grandstand, and two are in critical condition. Pocono spokesman Bob Pleban says it's not clear if all 10 were actually struck by lightning. It's unknown whether one or multiple lightning strikes occurred. Pleban says five people were treated at the scene. He says one person was taken to Pocono Medical Center and another to Lehigh Valley, where they were in critical condition. The conditions of the other three are unknown.(Associated Press)(8-5-2012)
    UPDATE 2: One fan was killed and nine others were injured as a result of lightning strikes following Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Pocono Raceway. Track officials said the name or gender of the fan killed could not be released until family members were notified. They said the fan was pronounced dead on arrival at Pocono Mountain Medical Center in Stroudsburg. One other fan is in critical condition at Lehigh Hospital in Allentown. The other eight are being treated and evaluated for minor injuries at local hospitals.(ESPN.com)(8-5-2012)
    UPDATE 3 - Pocono Statement: As reported yesterday, a long time member of our Pocono Raceway family, a spectator has passed away following a lightning strike. According to Monroe County Coroner Robert Allen the name of the deceased is 41 year old Moosic, Pennsylvania resident Brian Zimmerman Additionally; nine other individuals were transferred to local hospitals as a result of two separate lightning strikes.
    At approximately 5:01 p.m. Eastern Time, the first lightning strike occurred on property inside our Grandstand Parking area, located near Gate 5A. A Pocono Raceway Grandstand Fire unit was stationed in the vicinity and witnessed the actual strike. The response was immediate as the unit reported the incident to our control tower and advised spectators were injured. CPR was started immediately to Mr. Zimmerman by a friend on the scene.
    Within a matter of 3 minutes, medical personnel and additional emergency services reported on the scene and took control of treatment to individuals. EMT responders were approached by additional individuals who reported symptoms related to the lightning strike. Those affected were taken to the Raceway Medical Centers, where they were examined and transported to local area hospitals for treatment and further evaluation. A total of nine individuals were treated as a result of the initial lightning strike.
    At approximately 6:35 p.m. Eastern Time, the control tower was notified of a second possible lightning strike in the vicinity near Gate 3. The individual was immediately transported to Pocono Raceway's Infield Medical Center where they were initially treated for minor injuries before being transported to Pocono Medical Center in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania for further evaluation.
    At this point in time, the one individual that was in critical condition has now been upgraded to stable. Some have been treated and released. Others involved are pending release as early as today and all are in good spirits. The safety of all guests to Pocono Raceway is of the utmost importance to our entire staff. This tragic event is at the forefront of all of our thoughts and prayers. We will learn from the incident and continue to implement strategies to help ensure the safety of fans and all attendees at future events at Pocono Raceway.
    (Pocono Raceway)(8-6-2012)

  • Commercial breakdown and links related to the 2012 Pennsylvania 400: (Rain Delayed/Rain Shortened) 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 2:30 PM, and stopped at the last rain delay at 4:44 PM (all times are EST). Did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. ESPN was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 62
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 47
    Number of 'Side-by-Side' commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 0
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast: 15
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 1 min. 55 sec. min.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 2:30 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 4:44 PM
    Minutes of race broadcast: 103
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 31
    Minutes of 'Side-by-Side' commercials (split-screen): 0
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of 'mystery cautions' (debris not shown): 0
    Total race brdcst time 103 Total comm. brdcst time 31
    See past races, links and more on the 2012 TV Commercials page.(8-6-2012)

  • Johnson says flat tire led to wreck: A WILD RESTART TELL US WHAT HAPPENED DOWN IN TURN ONE?
    "When I was cooling my tires down through the tunnel coming to the green I noticed that something didn't feel right. I kept trying to clean the tires off and it got a little better so I just assumed I had trash on my tires, but when I got down into turn one I realized that I had a right-rear (tire) flat. Unfortunate that we lost the lead there and we got a couple of cars in the process. I shouldn't feel bad about that but not much you can do with a right-rear flat."(Chevy PR)(8-6-2012)


    News from August 5, 2012

  • Fans struck by lightning after race: UPDATES: Three fans were struck by lightning following the rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday at Pocono Raceway. According to a witness, they were struck outside the track. Track spokesman Bob Pleban confirmed that three people were injured and two were transported to a local hospital. One was treated at the track care center and released. Pleban said he could not release the names nor the condition of those injured, who were hit during a massive thunderstorm that forced the race to be halted after 98 of 160 laps.(Sporting News)(8-5-2012)
    UPDATE: Officials at Pocono Raceway say 10 people attending Sunday's NASCAR race were injured in a lightning strike in the parking lot behind the grandstand, and two are in critical condition. Pocono spokesman Bob Pleban says it's not clear if all 10 were actually struck by lightning. It's unknown whether one or multiple lightning strikes occurred. Pleban says five people were treated at the scene. He says one person was taken to Pocono Medical Center and another to Lehigh Valley, where they were in critical condition. The conditions of the other three are unknown.(Associated Press)(8-5-2012)
    UPDATE: One fan was killed and nine others were injured as a result of lightning strikes following Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Pocono Raceway. Track officials said the name or gender of the fan killed could not be released until family members were notified. They said the fan was pronounced dead on arrival at Pocono Mountain Medical Center in Stroudsburg. One other fan is in critical condition at Lehigh Hospital in Allentown. The other eight are being treated and evaluated for minor injuries at local hospitals.(ESPN.com)(8-5-2012)

  • Jeff Gordon wins at Pocono: #24-Jeff Gordon won the Pennsylvania 400 at Pocono Raceway for his 1st win of the year, his 6th at Pocono, and 86th career win. The race started nearly two hours late and was called on lap 99 when rain returned.
    #5-Kahne, who stayed on track under caution with a flat tire, finished 2nd followed by #56-Truex, Jr, #2-Keselowski, #14-Stewart, #39-Newman, #99-Edwards, #15-Bowyer, #78-Smith, and #9-Ambrose.
    #48-Johnson led the most laps on the day, but got loose going into turn one on the lap 91 restart and slid up into #17-Kenseth. Johnson finsihed 14th. Points leader #88-Earnhardt, Jr. had transmission problems and finished 32nd but held onto the points lead by 5 over #17-Kenseth. Earnhardt, Jr. failed to finish on the lead lap for the first time this year.
    Pole sitter #42-Montoya finished 20th.
    There were only 3 cautions for 14 yellow flag laps. There were 13 lead changes among 10 drivers. The average speed was 139.249mph.
    The estimated attendence was 85,000, the same as the second race of 2011 and down from 100,000 for the first race of this season.
    See race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Pocono Race Results page (pdf) .(8-5-2012)

  • Race Fast Facts - Pocono:
    Jeff Gordon won the 39th Annual Pennsylvania 400, his 86th victory in 674 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races. Gordon is third on the all-time series wins list.
    This is his first victory and ninth top-10 finish in 2012.
    This is his sixth victory and 28th top-10 finish in 40 races at Pocono Raceway. Gordon takes sole possession of first on the all-time Pocono wins list.
    Unofficially, Gordon moves to second in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Wild Card standings.
    Kasey Kahne (second) posted his sixth top-10 finish in 18 races at Pocono Raceway. It is his 11th top-10 finish in 2012.
    Martin Truex Jr. (third) posted his fifth top-10 finish in 14 races at Pocono Raceway.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(8-5-2012)

  • 2012 Sprint Cup Driver Championship Points Standings:
    [after Pocono, race 21 of 36]
    1) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [1 win], 744
    2) #17-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 739, -5
    3) #16-Greg Biffle [1 win], 738, -6
    4) #48-Jimmie Johnson [3 wins], 736, -8
    5) #56-Martin Truex Jr. [0 wins], 694, -50
    6) #14-Tony Stewart [3 wins], 691, -53
    7) #2-Brad Keselowski [3 wins], 690, -54
    8) #11-Denny Hamlin [2 wins], 683, -61
    9) #29-Kevin Harvick [0 wins], 681, -63
    10) #15-Clint Bowyer [1 wins], 679, -65 (57 pts ahead of 11th)
    Current wild card Chase drivers:
    WC1) #5-Kasey Kahne [2 wins, 11th in points]
    WC2) #24-Jeff Gordon [1 win, 13th in points]
    (ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
    See drivers championship points standings on the Drivers Points Standings (pdf).(8-5-2012)

  • 2012 Sprint Cup Driver Chase Wild-Card Race:
    [after Pocono, race 21 of 36]
    A look at the race for the two wild-card positions for the Chase based on wins and being inside the top 20 in points.
    Driver [wins] standings, behind 10th
    first two would make the chase as wild cards:
    #5-Kasey Kahne [2 wins] 11th -57 points out of 10th
    #24-Jeff Gordon [1 win] 13th -68
    eight other drivers currently in the running for the wild cards:
    #39-Ryan Newman [1 win] 14th -68
    #18-Kyle Busch [1 win] 15th -80
    #20-Joey Logano [1 win] 17th -104
    #99-Carl Edwards 12th -60
    #27-Paul Menard 16th -82
    #9-Marcos Ambrose 18th -126
    #1-Jamie McMurray 19th -144
    #31-Jeff Burton 20th -152
    (ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
    The Chase: The top-10 drivers will make the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Positions 11 and 12 in the 12-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup are Wild Cards, and will go to drivers outside the top 10 with the most wins, as long as they are ranked in the top 20 in points. If multiple drivers outside the top 10 tie for wins, the tie-breaker will go to the race winner with the highest points position.
    See drivers championship points standings on the Drivers Points Standings (pdf).(8-5-2012)

  • Top-35 in Owner Points and guaranteed a starting spot at Watkins Glen:
    #36 remains in 35th and is new 92 points ahead of 36th, the #33 team.
    Rank) Car#-Driver/Team, owners pts, +/-
    32) #83-Cassill/BK Racing, 311 +128
    33) #10-Reutimann-Patrick/Baldwin, 305 +122
    34) #32-Schrader/FAS Lane Racing, 294 +111
    35) #36-Blaney/Baldwin, 269 +92 ahead of 36th
    these teams / drivers will need to qualify by speed:
    36) #33-Leicht/Childress-Falk, 183, -92 from the top 35
    37) #21-Bayne/Wood Bros., 161, -114
    38) #30-Stremme/Inception, 155, -120
    The teams are NOT locked in past the next race as the owners points change after each race.
    For the owner points standings, see the Owners Points Standings (pdf).(8-5-2012)

  • Pocono Notes-n-Nuggets:
    " The race was called after 98 laps due to rain.
    " Jeff Gordon earned his 86th Sprint Cup win, third all-time, in his 674th start.
    " He hadn't won since September 2011 at Atlanta (31 starts).
    " It was Jeff Gordon's sixth win at Pocono, tops among all drivers.
    " Jeff Gordon is the 13th driver to win this season.
    " It was Jeff Gordon's sixth win in a rain-shortened event; the last time also was at Pocono, in June 2007.
    " This is Jeff Gordon's 17th season with at least one win.
    " Jeff Gordon led once for eight lap.
    " Hendrick Motorsports earned its 206th Cup win. Its seventh victory of 2012 and 13th at Pocono are both most of all teams.
    " Chevrolet earned its 26th Pocono win and 11th of 2012, both most of all makes.
    " Kasey Kahne (second) got his third top-two finish in the past five races and his best finish at Pocono since his win in June 2008.
    " Martin Truex Jr. (third) matched his best Pocono finish (2007); it was his first top-five since finishing fifth in May at Darlington.
    " Brad Keselowski (fourth) earned his 11th top-10 finish of 2012.
    " Tony Stewart (fifth) got his fifth top-five during the past eight races.
    " Dale Earnhardt Jr. (32nd) had his worst finish of 2012 and failed to finish on the lead lap for the first time this season. It broke a streak of 21 lead-lap finishes.
    (Racing Recall/nascar.com)(8-5-2012)

  • Furniture Row to buy Penske engine program? Kurt Busch in second FRR car? UPDATE: Nobody is talking on the record, still, but unofficial word from the NASCAR engine building world Sunday morning is that Barney Visser [#78 Furniture Row Racing], the Denver, Col., businessman is considering buying the Dodge engine department from Roger Penske. With Penske moving to Fords for 2013, and with Penske -- according to Jack Roush -- agreeing to run Roush-Yates Ford FR9s next season, the future of Penske's huge engine department has been the subject of much debate. Now word is that some of Penske's top engine men will be moving to the Roush-Yates engine department, and that Visser will be taking many of the rest, along with Penske's engine building equipment, and Visser will thus be switching from Chevy to Dodge. And -- though again no one is talking on the record -- it appears that Visser is very interested in hiring Kurt Busch to team with Smith next season.(MikeMulhern.net)(8-5-2012)
    UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing is prepared to switch from Chevy to Dodge in 2013 if the manufacturer chooses to go in that direction. Furniture Row general manager Joe Garone said Sunday at Pocono Raceway that there have been initial talks with Dodge about making a switch and adding a second team, potentially with 2004 Sprint Cup champion Kurt Busch. "If Dodge comes to us and says here's the right deal, we would do it," Garone said. "They're trying to figure out who they're going to do it with and how they're going to do it." Furniture Row currently gets its chassis from Richard Childress Racing and engines from Earnhardt Childress Racing. Everything else is built in the organization's Denver shop. Garone said the organization intends to keep driver Regan Smith, who won at Darlington Raceway last year, beyond this season. He said there have been talks with Busch about expanding, but that would depend on finding a sponsor or a manufacturer willing to give financial help. Garone said he has not given Dodge a deadline for making a decision, but he'd like to know sooner than later. Garone said they are waiting on a decision from Dodge before completing a deal with Smith. "It's our intention to bring him back," Garone said. "With all this other stuff pending, you don't make a commitment and find there is another avenue we should have taken."(ESPN.com)(8-5-2012)

  • Keselowski would like input on teammate for the #22: #2-Brad Keselowski has three Sprint Cup wins for Roger Penske this season. He also hopes he has his boss's ear when it comes to finding a replacement for recently-dismissed teammate AJ Allmendinger. "I hope that we can secure a teammate that is an elite talent that I can work with -- and certainly some of that responsibility is mine to communicate," Keselowski said. "I think that's something that Mr. Penske takes very seriously." Keselowski, currently ninth in the point standings, wants to be part of the decision-making process. Last season's pairing with Kurt Busch demonstrated to him how important positive give-and-take with a teammate can be. Both he and Busch qualified for the Chase, finishing fifth and 11th, respectively. "I told Roger from Day One, when I came to Penske Racing, I didn't want to be just a driver," Keselowski said. "I wanted to be part of a team and part of making Penske Racing as strong as possible. [A replacement for Allmendinger] is something we've discussed. But I can't say that we've come up with an answer."(NASCAR.com)(8-5-2012)

  • Record camping crowd anticipated at The Glen: Fans attending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at The Glen who are interested in camping at Watkins Glen International for the weekend have just one option - GEICO Caveman unreserved camping at Gate 1. The popularity of spending the weekend at The Glen continues to increase and is especially evident this season with GEICO reserved and Family Camping sold out. Fans are encouraged to purchase GEICO Caveman unreserved camping before that too sells out. In February, The Glen announced GEICO reserved camping sold out earlier than in previous years. Family Camping, expanded in response to its popularity during the 2011 NASCAR weekend, is sold out. GEICO Caveman unreserved camping in Gate 7 is sold out. The Gate 1 GEICO Caveman unreserved area has increased lighting, nearby showers and water available. There are no hookups. Sites are available on a first-come, first-serve basis and camper load-in begins on Wednesday, August 8 at 7:30 a.m.(WGI)(8-4-2012)

  • Family ticket packages available at Martinsville: If you're looking for more family time, Martinsville Speedway's got the answer: The TUMS Fast Relief 500 on October 28. The track has two Family Four Pack packages for the TUMS Fast Relief 500, giving families two amazingly affordable ways to spend the day together at Martinsville cheering for their favorite driver in the seventh race in the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship. The Family Four Pack includes two adult tickets and two children's tickets (12 and under) to the TUMS Fast Relief 500. The $90 Family Four Pack seats are located in rows 6 through 14 of the Clay Earles Tower. The $120 Family Four Pack seats are in rows 6 through 12 of the Sprint Tower. Order your Family 4 Pack today by calling 877-RACE-TIX (877-722-3849) and mentioning the Family Four Pack offer.(Martinsville Speedway)(8-4-2012)

  • Danica Patrick added to Monster Mile Club at Dover: Danica Patrick, driver of the GoDaddy.com Chevy in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR Nationwide Series, will appear for a question-and-answer session in the Monster Mile Club at 11 a.m. before the Sept. 30 "AAA 400" NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. Joining Patrick on the schedule for the morning's Q&A sessions are two-time Dover winner Matt Kenseth, driver of the No. 17 Best Buy Ford, and three-time winner at the Monster Mile Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 39 U.S. Army Chevy. The Monster Mile Club opens at 8 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 30 with a continental breakfast. Trackside Access begins at 8:30 a.m. with the hosted question-and-answer sessions with Patrick, Kenseth and Newman following later in the morning. An all-you-can-eat lunch will be served from 11 a.m. until the start of the "AAA 400" NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at 2 p.m., at which point the Monster Mile Club will close.(Dover Speedway)(8-4-2012)


    News from August 4, 2012

  • Newman focused on staying with Stewart Haas: Ryan Newman says he is 100 percent focused on staying at Stewart-Haas Racing in 2013, not returning to Penske Racing. The #22 at Penske Racing became available for next season on Tuesday when the team released suspended driver AJ Allmendinger. Newman, who drove for Penske Racing from 2002 until 2008, said he has not contacted his former team about a possible return if sponsorship can't be found for him at SHR. SHR owner Tony Stewart has said he wants Newman back as long as sponsorship can be found. "There's potential for absolutely anything,'' Newman said after Saturday's qualifying at Pocono Raceway. "My goal is to stay at Stewart-Haas and continue what we're doing. We're working on that.'' Asked to define the odds of his staying at SHR, Newman added, "Right now, 100 percent, I hope."(ESPN.com)(8-4-2012)

  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Pennsylvania 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway have been made.
    Pole sitter #42-Montoya chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #11-Hamlin took pit stall 31, the first pitstall behind the start finish line.
    #27-Menard, who starts 3rd took the 25th pit stall.
    The 43rd and final pit stall was taken by #51-Busch, who starts 6th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on the Pit Stall Selection chart.(8-4-2012)

  • Montoya wins pole at Pocono: #42-Juan Pablo Montoya won the pole for the Pennsylvania 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway with a speed of 175.067mph for his 1st pole of 2012 and 8th career pole.
    #11-Hamlin will start 2nd followed by #27-Menard, #5-Kahne, #9-Ambrose, #51-Busch, #17-Kenseth, #88-Earnhardt, Jr., #39-Newman, and #48-Johnson.
    The go-or-go homers who made the race (8): #19-Bliss, #23-Riggs, #26-Wise, #37-Yeley, #30-Stremme, #87-Nemechek, #91-Sorenson, #98-Skinner.
    The go-or-go homer who failed to qualify for the race (1): #33-Leicht.
    See the qualifying order & results, starting lineup, pole progression and more on the Pocono Qualifying Page.(8-4-2012)

  • Qualifying Fast Facts - Pocono:
    Juan Pablo Montoya won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 39th Annual Pennsylvania 400 with a lap of 51.124 seconds, 176.043 mph.
    This is his eighth pole in 202 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    Montoya is the 15th different Coors Light Pole winner this season. He is now locked into the 2013 Shootout at Daytona.
    This is his first pole and second top-10 start in 2012. His last pole came in April of 2011 at Richmond International Raceway.
    This is his first pole in 12 races at Pocono Raceway. His previous best start was second in August of 2010.
    Denny Hamlin (second) posted his 12th top-10 start of 2012 and his 12th in 14 races at Pocono Raceway.
    Paul Menard (third) posted his fourth top-10 start at Pocono Raceway. It is his fourth in 21 races this season.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(8-4-2012)

  • Roush says Penske will use Roush-Yates engines: Jack Roush says Penske has decided to run Roush-Yates Ford engines next season. Penske has said he will not be shutting down the 80-man operation he currently has, but it would seem unlikely that Ford would care for one of its star new players to also continue building Dodge engines on the side. A possible sale of that engine shop to Dodge itself has been speculated as the only logical solution.
    Roush: "Roger and I will cooperate on things that are in our common interests, and we will compete on things that reflect our need to be independent and justify our space on the race track. We've done the bulk of the work on the 2013 car; we did invite them to have a look at what we've done in concert with Ford, and made sure we had their blessing, along with the other Ford teams involved. The indication are -- though I don't know if the papers have been signed yet -- that he will use our engines. He does have a few things he does different with his cars and the way the engines are mounted; so we'll respect his experience and his package preference. Whether we wind up with the same package for all Ford cars or not is yet to be determined."
    Roush, asked about the possibility of Penske becoming a business partner with Roush and Doug Yates in the engine operations, said "There is no plan on the table for Roger for any ownership in the engine program. But I stop short of saying that would never be a consideration going forward."(MikeMulhern.net)(8-4-2012)

  • White replaces Townley in #32: UPDATE: John Wes Townley hit the wall at the exit of Turn 2 during his warmup lap on Friday at Pocono Raceway, and he was replaced as driver of FAS Lane Racing's #32 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car before he even turned an official lap. Camping World Truck Series driver Jason White will replace Townley, who was planning to make his Cup debut in Sunday's Pennsylvania 400 with sponsorship from the Zaxby's fast-food chicken restaurant chain. This will be White's second career Sprint Cup Series start. He finished 33rd in last year's August Pocono race while driving the same #32 for FAS Lane Racing(SB Nation)(8-3-2012)
    UPDATE: FAS Lane Racing owner Frank Stoddard declined comment, and Townley was unavailable for comment. "I was at an autograph session for the Camping World Truck Series and Frankie gave me a call and said the driver didn't know if he wanted to run the race, so they wanted to make a driver change," Jason White said. "I got signed up with NASCAR to get my Cup license. & Did all that, changed a few things with the seat and jumped in the seat right before the end of practice. I wasn't really prepared for it but it was pretty cool to come out here and run."(Sporting News)(8-4-2012)

  • TMone returns to Tommy Baldwin Racing: UPDATE: TMone will return to Tommy Baldwin Racing this weekend at Pocono Raceway. The business process outsourcing company will support the team in an associate partnership with the #10 Chevy driven by David Reutimann and primary partnership with the #36 @TMone C.R.M. Hiring Veterans Chevy driven by Tony Raines. TMone is a semi-rural provider of domestic business services and customer relationship management outsourcing.(Tommy Baldwin Racing)(8-3-2012)
    UPDATE: TMone will expand their outsourcing program with Tommy Baldwin Racing this weekend at Pocono Raceway. David Reutimann will pilot the #10 TMone.com Business Process Outsourcing Chevy in the Pennsylvania 400 Sunday, August 5.(Tommy Baldwin Racing)(8-4-2012)

  • NASCAR schedules tests for 2013 cars: Fans can watch: Cup teams will have the 2013 model for an Aug. 7-8 test at Martinsville Speedway that is aimed at rules tweaks to make the cars lighter and help Goodyear develop tires with more grip to improve racing. The 2013 car also will be tested Oct. 4 at Talladega Superspeedway, Oct. 9-10 at Texas Motor Speedway and Oct. 18 at Kansas Speedway. Dodge is taking part in the tests. The manufacturer hasn't announced any replacements for Penske Racing, which will join Ford next year.(USA Today)(8-1-2012)
    UPDATE: Martinsville Speedway's grandstands will be open to fans free-of-charge for an August 7 and 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup Goodyear tire test at the historic half-mile oval. The test will feature the new 2013 Sprint Cup cars. The test session will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, with an hour break at noon. Gates will open at 8 a.m. each of the two days and will remain open until 5 p.m. Restrooms will be open both days, but concession stands will not be operating. Fans may bring refreshments into the grandstands.(Martinsville Speedway)(8-4-2012)

  • Gordon to receive Heisman Humanitarian Award: Jeff Gordon has been selected as the seventh recipient of The Heisman Humanitarian Award. The award will be formally presented to the four-time Cup Series champion at the 78th Annual Heisman Memorial Trophy Dinner on Dec. 10 in New York. Gordon established his foundation after then-crew chief Ray Evernham's son was diagnosed with leukemia in 1992. The Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation helps children facing critical illness realize their dreams. As it has grown, it has raised more than $11 million for children's charities through the years. The Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation's mission is to support children battling cancer by funding programs that improve patient's quality of life, treatment programs that increase survivorship and pediatric medical research dedicated to finding a cure. Gordon also opened the Jeff Gordon Children's Hospital in Concord, N.C., in hopes that it will serve as a model to other communities who want to provide the highest quality of care to all children, regardless of their ability to pay. As part of the award, The Heisman Trophy Trust will donate $50,000 to the Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation. The Heisman Trust's mission is to preserve the integrity of the Heisman Trophy and to provide opportunities for underserved youth and other members of society. Since the Trust assumed stewardship of the Heisman Trophy in 2001, it has made donations in excess of $4 million to over 200 charities throughout the country, affecting countless children. The Heisman Humanitarian Award was established in 2006 to recognize those in the world of sports who give significantly of themselves to serve their communities and to improve the lives of others.(Heisman PR)(8-4-2012)

  • Montoya to be featured on Kellog's cereal at Target: The Team Target drivers Dario Franchitti, Scott Dixon and Juan Pablo Montoya will be the new faces on select Kellogg's brand packaging nationwide starting August 19. The dynamic trio, who has given Target and Chip Ganassi Racing 45 career wins, including four in the Indianapolis 500 and six championships, will now be featured on limited-edition Kellogg's foods, including Kellogg's Frosted Flakes, Pop-Tarts, Rice Krispies Treats and Vrooms cereal, which will all be sold for a limited time only at Target stores. Through the Target Racing relationship, partner Kellogg's will activate their relationship away from the race track for the first time with driver imagery on packaging that will include driver images, tidbits, fun facts and games - all tying into an on-pack sweepstakes where one lucky fan will win the "Ultimate Racing Experience" prize package and attend a NASCAR or INDYCAR race in 2013.(Chip Ganassi Racing)(8-4-2012)

  • Bristol ticket holders can drive the track: Jealousy may soon hit the drivers in the NASCAR garage area. On Saturday, Aug. 11, race fans with tickets to any BMS racing event during IRWIN Tools Night Race Week will be allowed to drive their own vehicle around the revamped concrete surface, an advantage any NASCAR driver surely would enjoy. Those with tickets to the IRWIN Tools Night Race, the Food City 250 or the UNOH Perfect Storm Doubleheader can come to BMS from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. on Aug. 11 for an open house to showcase the Bristol high banks. After showing their tickets, fans will line up behind the Official BMS Pace Car for laps around the "World's Fastest Half-Mile." In addition to track laps, Camping World Truck Series competitor Ty Dillon will be on hand from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. to provide ride-along laps to several lucky fans in a street truck. Those without tickets should not fret, however, as they will be available to purchase on site.(BMS)(8-4-2012)

  • Kansas Speedway repave update: There is still some paving left to do on the project around the aprons, on pit road and on the road course, but the project is almost done and one of the first indications is that the SAFER Barriers are going back up as the Kansas Speedway oval is a couple of weeks away from stock cars testing out the new surface.(Kansas Speedway)(8-4-2012)


    News from August 3, 2012

  • Happy Hour practice: for the Pennsylvania 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is over after 90 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
    #88-Earnhardt, Jr. 177.441
    #17-Kenseth 176.974
    #16-Biffle 176.724
    #18-Busch 176.564
    #99-Edwards 176.391
    slowest: #36-Raines 168.903 & #32-White 168.786.
    notes: Jason White has replaced John Wes Townley in the #32. #55-Martin spun off turn 1 but only made slight contact with the wall.
    See fastest speeds, laps run, best 10-lap average (if any ran 10 laps in a row) on the Pocono Happy Hour Practice Speeds page (pdf).(8-3-2012)

  • Go-or-go homers: where did the cars outside the top-35 in owners points practice in Pocono Happy Hour
    these drivers would make the race if the things stay the same:
    #26-Wise, 21st fastest overall
    #19-Bliss, 30th
    #30-Stremme, 31st
    #87-Nemechek, 33rd
    #37-Yeley, 34th
    #91-Sorenson, 35th
    #23-Riggs, 36th
    #98-Skinner, 39th
    if things stay the same, this driver would miss the race
    #33-Leicht, 40th
    (8-3-2012)

  • White replaces Townley in #32: John Wes Townley hit the wall at the exit of Turn 2 during his warmup lap on Friday at Pocono Raceway, and he was replaced as driver of FAS Lane Racing's #32 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car before he even turned an official lap. Camping World Truck Series driver Jason White will replace Townley, who was planning to make his Cup debut in Sunday's Pennsylvania 400 with sponsorship from the Zaxby's fast-food chicken restaurant chain. This will be White's second career Sprint Cup Series start. He finished 33rd in last year's August Pocono race while driving the same #32 for FAS Lane Racing(SB Nation)(8-3-2012)

  • Congrats: #11-Denny Hamlin announced Friday at Pocono that his girlfriend, Jordan Fish, is pregnant:
    Do you have some news to announce today? "I've been excited for a little while. I just want to let everyone know that me and Jordan (Fish) are expecting next January, and excited about that. It's been a long time coming, so it's going to be exciting to be a dad."
    What are your thoughts on fatherhood and how were you raised by your dad? "Hopefully, half of what my dad was would be good. My family has done a lot for me to get to this point obviously, and just all of the sacrifices and all that they've gone through. My dad tells me all of the time that some of the best times he had is just carrying me around in his pickup truck every day taking me to work with him and things like that. It's going to be a great experience and so I'm really excited about it and really just excited to be a part of it. For my parents to have grandkids is all going to be good. Everything works great, things happen and we're excited about the timing. It's going to be in January, so it's the off -season so all of that seems to be aligning perfectly for us. My parents and all live a mile or two down the road, so they're going to get to visit all of the time. It's going to be a great time over these next six month s to a year."
    Have you set a wedding date? "Especially now that all of this is going on and you want to be patient and everything. I am 31, so I consider myself pretty patient if I haven't been married yet. There's no reason to rush into it right now especially with everything that is going on. We've obviously got a busy six months ahead of us."(Toyota Racing PR)(8-3-2012)

  • Qualifying Order for the Pennsylvania 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is posted. 46 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers scheduled to go out is #32-Townley, slowest in practice.
    The final driver scheduled to go out is #48-Johnson, who was fastest in first practice.
    Qualifying order is set by the first practice session, with slowest driver going out by speed and the fastest going out last. The non-top 35 drivers are now mixed in with the top-35 in owners points, slowest to fastest.
    See the full qualifying order on the Pocono Qualifying Page.(8-3-2012)

  • First Friday practice: for the Pennsylvania 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is over after 90 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
    #48-Johnson 174.290
    #18-Busch 173.994
    #99-Edwards 173.967
    #17-Kenseth 173.950
    #16-Biffle 173.772
    slowest: #33-Leicht 169.367 & #36-Raines 169.278. no speed: #32-Townley.
    #27-Menard broke something at the end of practice and hit the outside wall. He will have to go to a backup car.
    This practice will set the order for qualifying, which will be held at 10:40am/et Saturday on ESPN2].
    Happy Hour practice is scheduled for 3:30pm/et to 5:00pm/et on SPEED.
    See fastest speeds, laps run, best 10-lap average (if any ran 10 laps in a row) on the Pocono Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf). (8-3-2012)

  • Go-or-go homers: where did the ten cars outside the top-35 in owners points practice at Pocono
    these drivers would make the race if the things stay the same:
    #26-Wise, 11th fastest overall
    #19-Bliss, 16th
    #30-Stremme, 30th
    #98-Skinner, 32nd
    #87-Nemechek, 33rd
    #91-Sorenson, 35th
    #37-Yeley, 36th
    #23-Riggs, 40th
    if things stay the same, this driver would miss the race
    #33-Leicht, 42nd
    (8-3-2012)

  • Shank wants Allmendinger in Grand-Am car: What's next for AJ Allmendinger? During a short telephone interview with FOXSports.com on Wednesday, Allmendinger expressed regret as well as gratitude for the outpouring of support from fans, which he acknowledged "helped me get through all of this." He said he has met with the administrator for NASCAR's Road to Recovery program and was given a "road map" to follow throughout the process. Team owner Michael Shank, who campaigns in the NASCAR Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series and won the Rolex 24 with Allmendinger behind the wheel at Daytona International Speedway on Jan. 29, said on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that he would field a car for the driver once he satisfies the sanctioning body's requirements for reinstatement. "He has to go through the Road to Recovery - which we all accept and we all agree with," Shank said. "That process, I'm told, can take anywhere from a month to three months. We'll be testing in Daytona in October and November with the Daytona prototype and some new stuff we have from Ford Racing coming. If that's the case, as soon as NASCAR says it's been satisfied, we'll get him back in."(Fox Sports)(8-3-2012)

  • Back to school scheme for Stewart: Tony Stewart's #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet will feature a special back-to-school paint scheme during Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pennsylvania 400 race at Pocono Raceway. Along with the Office Depot Foundation's logo appearing on the hood of Stewart's car, the colorful paint scheme will also incorporate a variety of essential school supplies, including pencils, pens, markers, notebooks, a laptop and more. 3M, Lenovo, Elmer's and Monster are Office Depot partners with products featured on the car (Office Depot), see images of the car on the #14 Team Schemes page.(8-3-2012)

  • Earnhardt, Jr. to be ESPN In-Race Reporter: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., the leader of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings, will be ESPN In-Race Reporter during the telecast of Sunday's 400-mile race at Pocono (PA) Raceway, continuing an element of ESPN's NASCAR telecasts that has been in place since 2007. Earnhardt will speak with ESPN analyst and 1999 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Dale Jarrett on the race's pace laps and during caution periods, bringing viewers the unique perspective of a driver competing in the race. In addition, ESPN analyst Andy Petree, a two-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion crew chief, will speak with Earnhardt's crew chief, Steve Letarte.(ESPN)(8-3-2012)

  • TMone returns to Tommy Baldwin Racing: TMone will return to Tommy Baldwin Racing this weekend at Pocono Raceway. The business process outsourcing company will support the team in an associate partnership with the #10 Chevy driven by David Reutimann and primary partnership with the #36 @TMone C.R.M. Hiring Veterans Chevy driven by Tony Raines. TMone is a semi-rural provider of domestic business services and customer relationship management outsourcing.(Tommy Baldwin Racing)(8-3-2012)

  • Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in both NASCAR series running at Pocono this weekend will run the same tire codes, though the Sprint Cup tires will be branded "Goodyear Eagle," while the Camping World Truck tires will be branded "Goodyear Wrangler" . . . this is the same combination of left- and right-side tires that Sprint Cup teams ran successfully at Pocono in June . . . this is the second NASCAR race weekend since Pocono was resurfaced, and Goodyear held a tire test at the track on April 24-25 . . . teams participating in that test were the No. 1 Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing Chevrolet, No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, No. 22 Penske Racing Dodge and No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners on all four tire positions at Pocono . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.(Goodyear), See tire codes. tire pressures and more on the Pocono Race Info page - Goodyear section.

  • Chassis selections for this weeks race: see the list of many teams [that report or post these] and what chassis were selected by the team to run at Pocono Raceway on the Pocono Race Info page - Chassis selection area.

  • Woman sues Daytona after tram crash: A woman who claims she was hurt badly in a wreck while a guest during the 2011 Rolex 24 is suing Daytona International Speedway. The suit filed by Dena Barton of Longwood states she was visiting the Speedway on Jan. 29, 2011, as a passenger in a tram towed by a new Chevy pickup. The suit alleges the pickup driver, Angela Warren, a Speedway employee, "negligently operated" the truck while going through a tunnel at the race track, causing a crash. A Daytona Beach Police Department report found Warren, of Holly Hill, rear-ended a recreational vehicle driven by Feliz Joaquin Gonzalez of Miami after Gonzalez slowed. Police found Warren at fault in the accident for "careless driving," though police did not issue a citation, the report shows. Barton said she suffered permanent injury, pain and suffering, physical impairment and, among other things, required hospitalization and medical or nursing care.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(8-3-2012)

  • Alex Boyd singing National Anthem at Pocono: The roar of 43 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series engines will fill the air as the green flag waves to start the 39th annual Pennsylvania 400 on Sunday, August 5. Prior to the start of the race, the sights and sounds of pre-race activities will feature a rising musical star and an aerial fly-over featuring military fighter planes from two separate eras. Virginia native and newly signed RCA Recording Artist Alex Boyd will perform the National Anthem prior to the start of the Pennsylvania 400. Boyd is gearing up to release his freshman album "Commit Me". A Heritage Air Force Foundation P-51 Mustang, World War Two fighter, and a modern day F-16 will provide a dramatic display of our nation's air power, past and present, as they streak across the sky above Pocono Raceway at the conclusion of pre-race activities. The F-16 is part of the 20th Fighter Wing, Shaw Air Force Base, Sumter, S.C.(Pocono Raceway)(8-3-2012)

  • Kid Rock to serve as Michigan Grand Marshal: Rock and Roll is coming to Michigan International Speedway, the fastest track in NASCAR. Recording artist, and Michigan resident, Kid Rock has been named this year's Pure Michigan 400 Grand Marshal. Known for his award-winning music and philanthropic efforts, Kid Rock will say the most famous words in racing, "Gentlemen, start your engines," in his role as the grand marshal for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 on August 19. Known around the world for his musical prowess, Kid Rock has sold more than 25 million records since his debut more than a decade ago.(Michigan Speedway)(8-3-2012)

  • "We Back Pat" ticket packages at Bristol: Knoxville's Trevor Bayne, a crowd favorite at Bristol Motor Speedway, is back on track in the Nationwide Series for the Food City 250 Aug. 24. Bayne is highlighted in two special ticket packages at BMS to celebrate his return to the World's Fastest Half-Mile as he pilots the "We Back Pat"-themed Roush Fenway Ford in honor of the University of Tennessee's Pat Summitt. The Food City 250 package currently is available, starting at $60, and features a ticket to the Food City 250, a "We Back Pat" t-shirt and admission to a special question-and- answer session with Bayne. Also available is a package for the weekend, which contains a ticket to both the IRWIN Tools Night Race Sprint Cup event Aug. 25 and the Food City 250, a "We Back Pat" t-shirt and admission to the Q&A, starting at $125. A portion of the proceeds from the ticket package will benefit The Pat Summitt Foundation. For more information, call the BMS ticket office toll free at 1-866-415-4158 or visit www.bristoltix.com.(BMS)(8-3-2012)


    News from August 2, 2012

  • Dodge will skip first test for 2013 cars: While Dodge has a car approved for 2013, it will skip the first tire test for the 2013 car next week at Martinsville Speedway. Dodge is still looking for teams to campaign its 2013 Dodge Charger in Sprint Cup. Its only manufacturer-backed team, Penske Racing, announced in March that it would switch to Ford. Since that announcement, Dodge has continued to meet all the deadlines and work on its 2013 body despite not having a team signed for 2013. "Earlier this week, NASCAR announced that all four manufacturers have met the necessary targets for their 2013 Sprint Cup Series race cars," said Beth Paretta, director of marketing and operations for the SRT Brand and Motorsports. Due to the lack of time to prepare for the on-track test for the 2013 cars scheduled next week at Martinsville, we have elected to forgo that test opportunity." Scheduled to test the cars next week are #29-Kevin Harvick and #48-Jimmie Johnson in Chevrolets, #99-Carl Edwards in a Ford and #56-Martin Truex Jr. in a Toyota. Even though it will miss this test, there will be plenty of tests for Dodge to participate in and get ready for 2013 if it signs teams to run its cars.(Sporting News)(8-2-2012)

  • BK Racing to run special decal on missing girls: BK Racing is lending a hand in the search for Elizabeth Collins and her cousin Lyric Cook, who have been missing since Friday, July 13. The team will run a special decal on the deck lid of its #83 Toyota, driven by Landon Cassill, and #93 Toyota driven by Travis Kvapil. The decals will feature an image of the missing girls, along with a phone number to call for any information on their whereabouts. The decals will run this weekend during the Pennsylvania 400 at the Pocono Raceway. Collins and Cook were last seen in the city of Evansdale, Iowa. Their bicycles and Elizabeth's purse were found near a trail at the edge of Meyers Lake after leaving their grandmother's house.(Breaking Limits/BK Racing)(8-2-2012)

  • TRAQM.com to Sponsor #98 at Pocono: TRAQM.com, the leader in personal and business GPS trackers, announced sponsorship of Phil Parsons Racing's #98 Ford this weekend at Pocono Raceway. Mike Skinner will carry TRAQM.com's colors aboard his Ford Fusion in Sunday's Pennsylvania 400. TRAQM.com, headquartered in East Windsor, New Jersey, will serve as Skinner's primary sponsor with its logos on the hood, quarter panels and TV panel of the car. It will be TRAQM.com's first partnership with Phil Parsons Racing. "We're very excited to be a part of this sport and our partnership with Phil Parsons Racing," said Alfred Demola, president of TRAQM.com. "NASCAR racing is a great fit for us to showcase our products. Much like a race team, we want to gather and report as much information as possible about a driver's performance. Whereas a race team focuses on making its car go faster, we provide tracking and satellite technology that allows you to monitor a driver in your family or business. Whether it's to make sure your teen doesn't break the speed limit or stays within a certain range, or just verifying that your sales force are making all of their appointments on time, we will provide you with the most accurate and current information at industry-low pricing. We look forward to being a part of this team and the sport for a long time to come."
    "Everyone at Phil Parsons Racing is thrilled to have TRAQM.com onboard our Fusion this week at Pocono," said team owner Phil Parsons. "They're a perfect fit for NASCAR Racing. I know our fans will love their technology and what they offer. TRAQM.com is basically your full-time spotter when it comes to your family and your business. You'll know everything that's going on with their driving. I'm proud to have them on our car and look forward to racing with them this weekend." TRAQM.com is managed by a team of Parents and Business Professionals who saw a need to provide a real time tracking technology that anyone could use. The hard work of our team has brought the latest in technological innovation to you the end user consumer and business professional. More info at TRAQM.com.(TRAQM), see images of the scheme in my #98 Team Schemes page.(8-2-2012)

  • The numbers for the Pennsylvania 400:
    1 - fewest cautions (7/30/78)
    2 - fewest on lead lap at finish (twice, most recent 6/6/82)
    3 - fewest caution laps (7/30/78)
    4 - races won from outside a top-20 starting position
    4 - fewest leaders (twice, most recent 6/9/85)
    4 - fewest laps led by race winner (Bobby Labonte, 7/29/01)
    5 - most wins (Jeff Gordon, Bill Elliott)
    5 - most poles (Bill Elliott, Ken Schrader)
    10 - number of jet dryers available for track drying this weekend
    10 - fewest lead changes (7/26/98)
    12 - wins by car owner (Rick Hendrick)
    13 - most cautions (twice, most recent 7/24/05)
    17 - drivers with more than one pole
    16 - most leaders (three times, most recent 6/13/04)
    18 - fewest cars running at finish (7/25/82)
    20 - drivers with more than one win
    23 - wins from the front row; 13 from the pole
    29 - worst starting position for race winner (Carl Edwards, 6/12/05)
    31 - different race winners
    36 - most cars on lead lap at finish (6/10/07)
    38 - different pole winners
    42 - most cars running at finish (6/10/07)
    56 - most lead changes (7/30/79)
    57 - most caution laps (6/13/04)
    120 minutes - approximate amount of time it takes to dry the 2.5-mile track
    175 - most laps led by race winner (Kurt Busch, 8/5/07)
    2012 Caution Update
    1 - fewest cautions this season (Fontana)
    5 - races extended beyond scheduled distance (Daytona1, Martinsville, Talladega, Darlington and Sonoma)
    10 - most cautions this season (Daytona1)
    108 - cautions in the first 20 races of 2012; includes 47 for accidents, 32 for debris and 12 for spins
    566 of 5,648 - laps under caution in 2012
    838.371 of 7,774.956 - miles under caution in the first 20 races
    (Darnell Communications for SRT Motorsports and Dodge)(8-2-2012)

  • 500th NASCAR start for Kahne: #5-Kasey Kahne will make his 500th NASCAR national series start on Sunday. The breakdown: 308 starts in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series; 186 in the NASCAR Nationwide Series and five in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He has a combined 26 wins in the three series.(NASCAR)(8-2-2012)

  • Roush Fenway names Senior VP: Roush Fenway Racing has announced the addition of sports marketing veteran Pete Thuresson to its marketing operations. Thuresson will serve as senior vice president of sales and business development, overseeing Roush Fenway's business development and marketing partnership efforts. A 20-plus year veteran of sports marketing, Thuresson boasts an extensive background in partnership management and industry marketing. He previously headed up national partnerships for FOX Sports in Chicago.(Roush Fenway Racing)(8-2-2012)

  • Sad News - Biddle Ridley: Mr. Biddle Ridley, 72, of Chatsworth, GA, died Monday, July 30, 2012. He was the brother of former Sprint Cup race winner and rookie of the year (1980) Jody Ridley. Service details and obituary at shawnchapmanfh.com.(8-2-2012)

  • Dustin Brown to serve as honorary starter at The Glen: Dustin Brown took the Stanley Cup to his hometown - Ithaca, NY and now he will be dropping the green flag for Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen (August 9-12). Captain of the 2012 Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings, Brown will serve as the honorary starter on Sunday, August 12. He is just the second United States born Stanley Cup champion team captain in National Hockey League (NHL) history. Brown has served as team captain of the LA Kings since 2008, becoming the youngest and the first American in franchise history. He was the 2010-11 NHL Foundation Player Award recipient and a 2009 All-Star game selection. In 2003, he was selected by the LA Kings with the 13th overall pick in the NHL draft.(WGI)(8-1-2012)

  • Travis Tritt performing pre-race concert at NHMS: Known as country music's outlaw, Travis Tritt will bring his mix of bluesy Southern rock and country to "The Magic Mile" as the featured pre-race act for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series SYLVANIA 300 on September 23. Travis Tritt was one of the leading new country singers of the early '90s, holding his own against Garth Brooks, Clint Black and Alan Jackson. He was the only one not to wear a hat and the only one to dip into bluesy Southern rock. Consequently, he developed a gutsy, outlaw image that distinguished him from the pack. Throughout the early '90s, he had a string of platinum albums and Top Ten singles, including three number one hits.(NHMS)(8-2-2012)


    News from August 1, 2012

  • Bayne on "Good Morning America" Thursday: #21-Trevor Bayne, 2011 Daytona 500 champion, will make a special appearance on "Good Morning America" Thursday, August 2, on ABC at 8:30 am ET. Bayne was a guest on the popular show last March after his improbable Daytona 500 win. The segment will feature Bayne and the all-new 2013 Ford Fusion.(Roush Fenway Racing)(8-1-2012)

  • Allmendinger released by Penske; statements by Allmendinger & Shell: Penske Racing announced today that AJ Allmendinger has been released as driver of the #22 Dodge Charger in the NASCAR Cup Series. Allmendinger was suspended indefinitely by NASCAR last week for a positive drug test. "Penske Racing fully supports NASCAR's substance abuse policy and we are disappointed with AJ's positive drug test results," said Roger Penske. "AJ is a terrific driver, a good person and it is very unfortunate that we have to separate at this time. We have invested greatly in AJ and we were confident in his success with our team. The decision to dismiss him is consistent with how we would treat any other Penske Racing team member under similar circumstances. As AJ begins NASCAR's 'Road to Recovery' program, we wish him the best and look forward to seeing him compete again in NASCAR." Sam Hornish Jr., will drive the #22 Dodge at Pocono this weekend and for the foreseeable future. Penske Racing will evaluate its options for a driver of the #22 car for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.(Penske Racing)(8-1-2012)
    Statement from Allmendinger: "Effective today, I have been released from Penske Racing as driver of the #22 Dodge Charger. I wish to thank Mr. Penske, Penske Racing, their sponsors, and especially all the of the #22 team for the opportunity they provided me and for their support in this difficult time. I also, again, would like to thank all the fans that really have been awesome through this. I apologize for the distraction, embarrassment, and difficulties that my current suspension from NASCAR has provided. As I stated last week, I have begun NASCAR's Road to Recovery program and look forward to using those resources and its completion to compete again in NASCAR in the near future."(Walldinger Racing)(8-1-2012)
    Shell Statement: Shell and Pennzoil fully support NASCAR's substance abuse policy and Penske Racing's decision to release A.J. Allmendinger as driver of the #22 Dodge Charger following his indefinite suspension by NASCAR. We wish A.J. the best as he participates in NASCAR's Road to Recovery program. Shell and Pennzoil will continue to work closely with Penske Racing to determine plans for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. (Shell Pennzoil)(8-1-2012)

  • NASCAR schedules tests for 2013 cars: Cup teams will have the 2013 model for an Aug. 7-8 test at Martinsville Speedway that is aimed at rules tweaks to make the cars lighter and help Goodyear develop tires with more grip to improve racing. The 2013 car also will be tested Oct. 4 at Talladega Superspeedway, Oct. 9-10 at Texas Motor Speedway and Oct. 18 at Kansas Speedway. Dodge is taking part in the tests. The manufacturer hasn't announced any replacements for Penske Racing, which will join Ford next year.(USA Today)(8-1-2012)

  • Brian Burns to serve as Labonte's crew chief at Pocono: Change is good and JTG Daugherty Racing has learned that adapting quickly is essential to success as they enter the Pennsylvania 400 at Pocono Raceway with Bobby Labonte at the wheel of the #47 SCOTT Products Toyota Camry. The next step for JTG Daugherty Racing is finding a long-term crew chief. This weekend Labonte's interim crew chief David Hyder is fulfilling his normal role at Iowa Speedway with the K&N Pro Series East team that JTG Daugherty Racing prepares for recent winner Cale Conley. With that being said, team engineer Brian Burns will step up to call the shots for the team this weekend at Pocono.(JTG Daugherty Racing)(8-1-2012)

  • Brickyard 400 still profitable with smaller crowds: Despite sharp attendance declines in recent years at the Brickyard 400, the event remains hugely profitable for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, motorsports industry experts say. NASCAR officials estimated attendance at this year's race in Indianapolis at 125,000, down from 138,000 last year. In 2007, race attendance was more than 200,000. The Speedway makes enough television revenue-close to $6 million-to pay its NASCAR sanctioning fee, according to industry experts, leaving the track with most of the revenue from ticket sales, concessions and parking. Motorsports business experts estimated that the Speedway made at least $9 million in ticket revenue from Sunday's Brickyard 400 and another $1 million to $2 million from Saturday's Nationwide Series race, which until this year has been held at Lucas Oil Raceway a few miles to the west. The IMS also for the first time hosted the Grand Am Series, but that wasn't likely a big moneymaker since attendance was only about 10,000. A new Brickyard 400 title sponsorship deal with Crown Royal added another $2 million to the Speedway's take.(Indianapolis Business Journal)(8-1-2012)

  • ISC to install fiber optic cable networks at tracks: International Speedway Corporation is working with American Tower Corporation and Corning Cable Systems, to design and install fiber optic cable networks supporting the deployment of distributed antenna systems at 12 of ISC's major motorsports facilities. "We are committed to enhancing the fan experience at all of our major motorsports facilities to better grow ISC's business," stated ISC's Vice President, Multi-Channel Marketing and Chief Information Officer, Craig Neeb. "Our customers want greater ability to communicate using their wireless devices when they attend our events. We too want the ability to connect with these customers as they enter our motorsport facilities with timely information to enhance their event day experience." Under the terms of the agreement, American Tower will design and install DAS and other wireless infrastructure solutions at ISC's motorsports facilities to enhance wireless signal strength and distribute radio capacity for customer use and general track operations during events.(International Speedway Corp)(8-1-2012)

  • Action Racing Collectables names top 10 diecast this year: This year, Action Racing Collectables (ARC), the popular die-cast brand owned by Lionel NASCAR Collectables, celebrates its 20th year of producing NASCAR die-cast cars. In July of 1992, Action began marketing its first die-cast product. Since then, the brand has become part and parcel of the racing world. To celebrate the 20-year milestone of Action Racing Collectables (ARC), Lionel NASCAR Collectables is releasing an ARC 20th Anniversary Commemorative die-cast. This 1:24 scale special edition die-cast is deco'd with the 20th Year logo and marks. To that end, Lionel NASCAR Collectables is releasing its ARC Mid-Year Top 10 - the best-selling 1:24 scale ARC paint schemes from the end of the 2011 season through July 10, 2012. The list includes all variations of each paint scheme - including Raced Win finishes. Unlike Lionel NASCAR Collectable's year-end top 10 list, this list is comprised of Action Racing Collectables-branded die-cast only. The top 10:
    1. Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Diet Mountain Dew/"The Dark Knight Rises" Chevrolet Impala
    2. Dale Earnhardt Sr. 1989 #3 Goodwrench Chevrolet Monte Carlo
    3. Tony Stewart #14 Office Depot 2011 Championship Chevrolet Impala
    4. Dale Earnhardt Sr. 1989 #3 Goodwrench Chevrolet Lumina
    5. Matt Kenseth #17 Best Buy Ford Fusion
    6. Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 AMP Energy Chevrolet Impala
    7. Richard Petty 1986 #6 STP Chevrolet Monte Carlo
    8. Mark Martin #55 Aaron's Toyota Camry
    9. Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 National Guard/NASCAR Unites Chevrolet Impala
    10. Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 AMP Energy/7-Eleven Chevrolet Impala
    All the paint schemes which made the top 10 and also the ARC 20th Anniversary die-cast design are available on the Action Racing Collectables 20th Anniversary Pinterest Board.(Lionel PR)(8-1-2012)

  • Watkins Glen partners with I Love New York campaign: Watkins Glen International announced its marketing partnership with the I LOVE NEW YORK campaign on Tuesday. The marketing partnership consists of the inclusion of the iconic I LOVE NEW YORK logo throughout Watkins Glen International's official website and in all print advertisements leading up to Sprint Cup Series at The Glen (August 9-12). Fans who visit The Glen this summer, if not for the upcoming NASCAR event, will notice several I LOVE NEW YORK advertising billboards throughout the facility.(WGI)(8-1-2012)

  • Fans can get deal when reordering Brickyard tickets: As a special thank you to the greatest race fans in the world, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is offering special pricing for selected days for the 2013 Kroger Super Weekend for those who reorder their Crown Royal Presents the "Your Hero's Name Here" 400 at the Brickyard tickets by Monday, Aug. 13. Fans reordering tickets to the 2013 Crown Royal Presents the "Your Hero's Name Here" 400 at the Brickyard will be entitled to special "Fan Prices" on tickets to select days. Visit www.imstix.com, log in to your account and reorder tickets or mail 2013 Reorder Form (enclosed with 2012 tickets) to: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, P.O. Box 24910, Speedway, IN 46224-0910.(IMS)(8-1-2012)


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Next Race: Sylvania 300

Countdown to Race Time: 9/21/2014 ~2:15pm/et

New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Loudon, NH

ESPN, 2:00pm/et
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Qualifying:
Friday, September 19, 2014, 4:40pm/et
FoxSports1 4:30pm/et
Live Radio online at goprn.com

Happy Hour Practice:
Saturday, September 20, 2014, 11:30am/et
FoxSports1 11:30am/et



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added a SLOTH of new links
on SEPTEMBER 16, 2014
to the Article Links page, including.......



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16 Jason Leffler, Doug Taylor, Stan Boyd, Darin Brassfield, Gary Balough

17 Jimmie Johnson, Lee Roy Yarbrough, Stirling Moss, Tony Romit, Norman Koshimizu, Gil Martin, Will Lind, Jessica Leigh Waltrip, Tommy Wallace

18 U.S. Air Force [1947], Boris Said III, Damon Lusk, Tom Powers, Tab Boyd, Johnny Mantz

19 Skyler Rae Smith, Keith Barnwell

20 Juan Pablo Montoya, Carl Long, Lance Norick, Cory Kruseman

21 Richard Childress, Randy Pemberton, Angelique Chengelis, Curtis Markham, Larry Carter

22 Leonard Wood, Colin Braun, Anne M. Edwards, Steve Christman, Marc Reno, Chuck Efaw

23 Regan Smith, Jeff Buice, Gene Black, Oda Green, Ben Leslie

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27 Terry Satchell, James Houk

28 Ron Fellows, Anthony Seibert

29 Stanley Smith, Chase Montgomery, Margaret Carol Waltrip

30 Frank Kerr, Bruce Kirkendall, Jeffrey Baker

Born in OCTOBER

1 Neil Goldberg, Fred Graves, Steve Barkdoll, John Krebs, Neil Castles, Mel Larson, Clarence DeZalia

2 John Roberts, Paul Goldsmith, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Semon 'Bunkie' Knudsen

3 Max Papis, Chase Austin, Carolyn Carrier, Bray Pemberton, Sidney Wolfe, Joe Piette Jr., Bobby Santos

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5 J.J. Yeley, Earl Barban, Brian Johnson, Austin Fox, Dave Rezendes, Rick Beebe, Courtney George, J.T. Putney

6 Mike McLaughlin, Dick McCabe, Phillip McGilton, Michael Marks

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10 Dale Earnhardt Jr, Coleman Pressley, Connie Larimore, Bill Feeney

11 Jimmy Hensley, David Starr

12 Morgan Shepherd, Ned Jarrett, Tim Sullivan, Lonnie Clouse, Ernie Gahan, Kitty 'Mom' Allison,

13 John Kernan, Michael Ehert, Tim Sauter, David Ifft

14 Jason Jarrett

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