McDonald's is scheduled to be the primary sponsor for the following ?15 races in 2014:
Daytona - 2/23
Bristol - 3/16
Auto Club - 3/23
Martinsville - 3/30
Richmond - 4/26
Talladega - 5/4
Kansas - 5/11
Michigan - 6/15
New Hampshire - 7/13
Watkins Glen - 8/10
Michigan - 8/17
Bristol - 8/23
Cessna / Bell Helicopter / E-Z-GO / Bad Boy Buggies is scheduled to be the sponsor of the #1 for the following ?12 races in 2014:
Daytona - 2/15, Sprint Unlimited
Phoenix - 3/2, Bad Boy Buggies
Las Vegas - 3/9, Bad Boy Buggies
Texas - 4/6, Bell Helicopter
Darlington - 4/12, Cessna / Beechcraft
Charlotte - 5/25, Cessna / Bell Helicopter
Dover - 6/1, Bad Boy Buggies
Pocono - 6/8, Cushman / Keurig
Sonoma - 6/22, Cessna / Hawker
Daytona - 7/5, Cessna - stars & stripes
Indianapolis - 7/27, Cessna / Greenlee
Pocono - 8/3, Bad Boy Buggies
Atlanta - 8/31, Cessna / Greenlee
Richmond - 9/6, Cessna
the rest TBA
Bass Pro Shops is scheduled to be the sponsor of the #1 for the following race in 2014:
Charlotte, All-Star race - 5/17
Lexar is scheduled to be the sponsor of the #1 for the following race in 2014:
Kentucky - 6/28
LiftMaster is scheduled to be the sponsor of the #1 for the following race in 2014:
Phoenix - 11/9
Contract Status: Driver: 2014; Sponsors: McDonald's 2014, Cessna 2014, LiftMaster 2014
Ganassi to be honored for contributions to motorsports: Multiple race-team owner Chip Ganassi on Thursday will receive the inaugural Cameron R. Argetsinger Award for his outstanding contributions to motorsports. The award will be given by the International Motor Racing Research Center at the 2014 IMRRC Award Dinner honoring Chip Ganassi presented by NASCAR, International Speedway Corporation and Watkins Glen International. Some of racing's top figures, including NASCAR President Mike Helton, will be honoring Ganassi, who fields teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Verizon INDYCAR and TUDOR United SportsCar Championship series. Ganassi Racing driver Jamie McMurray, who will be competing in the weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen International, also will take a turn at the podium, as will Brian Barnhart, INDYCAR senior vice president, competition, and SCCA president and CEO, Lisa Noble. The proceeds of the dinner will benefit the IMRRC, an archival library dedicated to preserving and sharing the history of motorsports, covering all series and all venues, through its collections of books, periodicals, films, photographs, fine art and other materials. The IMRRC is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.(International Motor Racing Research Center)(8-3-2014)
Bad Boy Buggies returns to the #1 at Pocono: The #1 Chevy SS, driven by Jamie McMurray, will carry the Bad Boy Buggies branding on the hood this weekend for the GoBowling.com 400. Bad Boy Buggies has new models and innovations that are revolutionizing the way outdoor enthusiasts use UTVs. Whether the customer is a hunter looking for the best technology to track and bag her next trophy kill, or a recreational rider seeking to tackle the trails, Bad Boy Buggies will continue to transform the way people enjoy the outdoors.(Chip Ganassi Racing)(8-1-2014)
Drivers on guest on TV shows (Tonight & Tuesday): Current and former NASCAR drivers make guest appearances on popular BBC America, USA Network and TBS television shows this week.
Jamie McMurray, Rusty Wallace and Junior Johnson are scheduled to appear on Idris Elba: King of Speed on BBC America, July 14th at 10:00pm/et. NASCAR drivers help actor Idris Elba uncover the world of NASCAR racing in an episode of the BBC America original docu-series, Idris Elba: King of Speed. Carl Edwards is scheduled to make a cameo appearance on USA Network's Royal Pains, Tuesday, July 15 at 9:00pm/et. In the episode the character Divya (Reshma Shetty) treats a NASCAR crew chief (guest star Michael O'Keefe) who suffers from anxiety. Edwards gives the crew chief's daughter Ashley (guest-star Spencer Grammer), who is an up-and-coming race car driver, tips about excelling on the track.
Brad Keselowski makes second guest appearance on TBS' Sullivan & Son, July 15th at 10:00pm/et. In the new episode entitled "Luck of The Half-Irish," Keselowski plays himself and finally breaks his losing streak. Keselowski credits his big win to visiting his favorite bar, Sullivan & Son, and the establishment declares the bar stool he sat on before the race "lucky." Keselowski first appeared on Sullivan & Son last season. He played himself and got into a fender bender with character Ok Cha (Jodi Long) when attempting to parallel park.(7-14-2014)
Sprint Cup teams form Race Team Alliance UPDATE: A group of nine multi-car teams participating in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) announced today they have formed a collaborative business association called the Race Team Alliance (RTA). The purpose of the organization is to create an open forum for the teams to explore areas of common interest and to work collaboratively on initiatives to help preserve, promote, and grow the sport of stock car racing. The organization intends to open up its membership to all full time NSCS teams in the very near future. In providing a vehicle for the teams to work together, the organization creates for the first time a single entity to engage with stakeholders on creative ways to market and experience the power of the sport's teams and drivers. As part of its focus, the RTA also plans to explore innovative ways to harness the combined purchasing power and scale of the teams' operations to drive efficiencies in costs. Rob Kauffman, co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, has been elected the first chair of the RTA.
"With the encouragement of NASCAR and the manufacturers, the teams have met in various forms and forums over the years to explore areas of common interest. This simply formalizes what was an informal group." said Kauffman. "The key word is 'Collaboration'. We all have vested interests in the success and popularity of stock car racing. By working together and speaking with a single voice, it should be a simpler and smoother process to work with current and potential groups involved with the sport. Whether it be looking for industry-wide travel partners or collaborating on technical issues - the idea is to work together to increase revenue, spend more efficiently, and deliver more value to our partners."
The following teams are the executive members of the RTA: Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates, Hendrick Motor Sports, Joe Gibbs Racing, Michael Waltrip Racing, Richard Childress Racing, Richard Petty Motor Sports, Roush Fenway Racing, Stewart-Haas Racing and Team Penske.(RTA)(7-7-2014)
UPDATE: Statement from NASCAR: "We are aware of the alliance concept the team owners have announced, but have very few specifics on its structure or purpose. It is apparently still in development and we're still learning about the details so it would be inappropriate to comment right now. NASCAR's mission, as it has always been, is to create a fair playing field where anyone can come and compete. Our job is to support and strengthen all of the teams, large and small, across all of our series and we'll continue to do that. NASCAR is a unique community with hundreds of stakeholders. They all have a voice and always will."(NASCAR)(7-7-2014)
Lexar sponsoring McMurray at Kentucky: The #1 Chevy SS driven by Jamie McMurray will feature the Lexar paint scheme at Kentucky Speedway. Lexar boasts one of the most comprehensive portfolios of high-performance, award-winning products in every major flash memory category, including memory cards, card readers, and USB flash drives. The paint scheme includes an array of colorful USB flash-drives across the car. Lexar Products include industry-leading memory cards for photography and video, card readers, high-performance USB flash drives, and memory cards for mobile devices.(Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates), see an image of the car on the #1 team paint schemes page.(6-26-2014)
McMurray visits Jacksonville Jaguars practice: #1-Jamie McMurray was blown away by the speed he saw on the Jacksonville Jaguars' practice field on Tuesday. "What surprised me the most is how fast these big guys are," McMurray said. "When you stand next to them and I'm probably a third of their weight, and to see how quickly they explode off the line -- it's incredible how big and strong and fast they are." McMurray was standing next to the players because he and Daytona International Speedway president Joie Chitwood III participated in a few drills during the Jaguars' OTA at the practice fields adjacent to EverBank Field. They fielded kickoffs from the JUGS machine, did a few line drills, and ran routes and caught passes from the quarterbacks, including rookie Blake Bortles. McMurray and Chitwood were at the Jaguars' facility as part of the 56th annual Coke Zero Powered by Coca-Cola Media Day.(ESPN)(6-11-2014)
NASCAR discusses Dover track repair: Just before the halfway point of Sunday's FedEx 400 at Dover, a piece of concrete came up from the track. #1-Jamie McMurray hit the concrete, causing front end splitter damage. The race was red flagged for more than 20 minutes while NASCAR repiared the track. Robin Pemberton, NASCAR Vice President of Competition and Racing talked to the media about it Sunday after Dover's race.
Q. Robin, a few drivers said over the radio that they saw problems with that this morning. Were any of those concerns brought to you or any of the NASCAR officials?
ROBIN PEMBERTON: We do a track walk after every race and in the morning, so at the time that had been a previous patch, but our staff, our crew didn't see anything wrong with it.
Q. I was just wondering if you could talk about the decision not to let the cars work under the red flag, especially Jamie.
ROBIN PEMBERTON: Yes. We've had issues of things like this in the past, and Martinsville comes to mind, some other things similar to that, and our policy is not to let them work on the car. You may remember when we had an equipment failure, broadcast equipment failure, sometime back, and that affected the entire field of race cars, and at that time we did red flag and we did allow the teams to fix the damage that was caused by that equipment failure. But that is our normal policy, to not allow teams to work on their cars.
Q. Can you talk a little bit about how the actual repair was made, the materials used?
ROBIN PEMBERTON: Yeah, our teams are -- we have equipment and we have product at every facility. Facilities keep it on hand. We do bring extras in case there is a need for it, but it is an epoxy type filler that we use, and it's basically the same filler that's used any time we make a repair at the track, whether it be asphalt or concrete.(NASCAR)(6-2-2012)
McMurray Gunning For Charlotte Sweep: Only seven drivers have swept Charlotte "Speedweeks," winning both the all-star race and the Coca-Cola 600: Darrell Waltrip (1985), Davey Allison (1991), Dale Earnhardt (1993), Jeff Gordon (1997), Jimmie Johnson (2003), Kasey Kahne (2008) and Kurt Busch (2010). Five of those drivers have won one or more NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championships. #1-Jamie McMurray already has won the Daytona 500 and Brickyard 400. His first career win came in the October Charlotte race, in his second career start. His last two points paying wins came in the Chase race at Talladega Superspeedway and the fall 500-mile race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. McMurray has even won the Sprint Showdown at CMS. The only Charlotte race McMurray is missing at this point in his career is the Coca-Cola 600. McMurray's best finish in the Coca-Cola 600 came 2010, with a second place finish. He has three top-10 finishes in the Coca-Cola 600, in 11 starts. McMurray's average finish in the race is an 18.2.(NASCAR)(5-25-2014)
McMurray to honor fallen firefighter in Coke 600: Jamie McMurray, LiftMaster, and the #1 Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (CGRFS) team will honor fallen Asheville, North Carolina firefighter, Captain Jeffrey Bowen, by racing with his name above the passenger side door of McMurray's car in Sunday's Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway (CMS). The recognition of Bowen's service to his community during Memorial Day weekend is the result of the relationship between McMurray's sponsor, LiftMaster, and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. The NFFF was created in 1992 to remember America's fallen fire heroes and provide assistance to their families.
"It is our honor to recognize Captain Jeffrey Bowen, his mother Laurel, and other members of the Bowen family during the Charlotte race weekend as part of LiftMaster's relationship with the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation," said Neal Villarin, Sponsorship & Event Marketing Manger for LiftMaster. "Memorial Day weekend is a time for all of us to remember those that have given the ultimate sacrifice, and we have a feeling that Jeffrey and his family will provide Jamie and his team with some extra luck in this weekend's race." Bowen was a 13-year veteran of the Asheville Fire Department and was fatally injured while responding to a four-alarm fire in an office building in 2011.
"As a veteran firefighter, Captain Bowen is a hero in his community because of his bravery in service, and I am proud to honor him, with his name on our race car during the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway," said McMurray. "First responders such as Captain Bowen are members of our community and they go above and beyond to keep us safe. A win in the Coca-Cola 600 would be special, but it would be an honor to drive into Victory Lane with Jeffrey's name on our race car."
The Bowen family has a full weekend of activities planned starting with the presentation of Thursday night's LiftMaster Pole Award, and before the green flag waves on Sunday, they will volunteer their time in support of the Firefighter Combat Challenge. The event is hosted during the Charlotte race weekend at the LiftMaster display and is the fifth stop on the Challenge schedule. "I'm incredibly honored that LiftMaster has chosen to recognize my son and am humbled to have Jamie McMurray and his team's support for Jeffrey," said Laurel Bowen. "This will be my first visit to the Charlotte Motor Speedway, so I'm looking forward celebrating my son with my family and volunteering for the Challenge with other members of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation." In addition to honoring Captain Bowen, LiftMaster also presented a $5,000 donation to the NFFF at Charlotte Motor Speedway.(CGR)(5-24-2014)
Chip Ganassi Racing signs PNC as sponsor: Chip Ganassi Racing Teams (CGRT) and The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. announced a new multi-year sponsorship agreement. The agreement is the second between Ganassi and PNC, which have also had a banking relationship that goes back 25 years. With the wide range of racing that CGRT participates in across three national touring series of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS), the Verizon IndyCar Series and the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship (TUSC), the agreement provides PNC with business development and client entertainment opportunities throughout the year. The agreement will focus on the following five racing markets in 2014: Indianapolis, Atlanta, Chicago, Charlotte and Richmond, Va. PNC, which has a business presence in all five regions, will use the high interest in auto racing and the CGRT relationship to offer unique events and behind-the-scenes activities to clients and prospects.(CGR)(5-23-2014)
Ganassi, McElreath, Mehl, Rahal, Simpson to be inducted into Auto Racing Hall of Fame: The five 2014 Auto Racing Hall of Fame inductees who will be honored on Thursday night, May 22, as part of the annual Indianapolis 500 Oldtimers dinner at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Indianapolis are as diverse as any class in recent history. And with A.J. Foyt being recognized for not only his four Indianapolis 500 wins but his win 50 years ago in the 1964 Indy 500, it is sure to be an exciting and memorable evening. The five 2014 Auto Racing Hall of Fame inductees are Chip Ganassi, Jimmy McElreath, Leo Mehl, Bobby Rahal and Bill Simpson. The first induction class was recognized in 1952, and there are now 148 members in this elite fraternity. The Auto Racing Hall of Fame is located at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum. A very limited number of tickets for the event are still available. If interested, contact Ellen Bireley (317) 492-6784.(IMS)(5-20-2104)
Jamie McMurray wins the Sprint All Star Race #1-Jamie McMurray won the Sprint All Star Race Sprint Cup Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway for his first All-Star race win. McMurray led 31 of 90 laps and came off pit road 2nd after segment 4. Pole winner #99-Edwards came off pit road with the lead but finished 5th. #4-Harvick finished 2nd followed by #20-Kenseth, #88-Earnhardt Jr., #99-Edwards, #48-Johnson, #15-Bowyer, #55-Vickers, #11-Hamlin and #2-Keselowski. Fan vote winner, #98-Josh Wise, finished 15th.
7 cautions for 12 laps. 9 lead changes among 6 drivers. The average speed was 100.517 mph.
REPORT: Streaking away from an intense battle with polesitter Carl Edwards to open the final 10-lap segment Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Jamie McMurray won the Sprint All-Star Race-and the million-dollar-plus prize that goes with the victory-for the first time in his career. McMurray held off fast-closing Kevin Harvick, who crossed the finish line .696 seconds behind the race winner. Matt Kenseth ran third, followed by Dale Earnhardt Jr., Edwards and four-time Sprint All-Star Race winner Jimmie Johnson. Earlier in the day, McMurray's son carter had asked the driver what his plans for the day were. "He asked me what I was going to do today, so I asked him what he was going to do today," said McMurray, who has tallied two of his seven Sprint Cup victories in points races at Charlotte. "And he said, 'Oh, I'm going to play in my sandbox. What are you going to do, Dad?'
"I said, 'I'm going to race for a million bucks, Carter.' It's so cool that we were actually able to win." The advantage McMurray opened after his breathtaking three-lap battle against Edwards gave him enough margin to hold off Harvick, who was closing fast in the final laps. "It was three or four of the hardest laps I've ever driven in my racing career," McMurray said.
It was first-year crew chief Keith Rodden's strategy, however, that put McMurray in position to win. After a pit stop on Lap 26, McMurray didn't take four tires again until the break between the final two segments, and on that final stop, superb work by his crew got him off pit road second and in a position to challenge Edwards for the lead. "Keith Rodden made some great calls tonight," said team owner Chip Ganassi, a Sprint All-Star Race winner for the first time. "The call was really made in segment 2 (the Lap 26 stop for tires) for him to be able to win the race." That call enabled McMurray to get by with two tires or to stay out between segments until the final stop. "Keith did an unbelievable job," McMurray said. "He was a huge secret in the garage (as an engineer at Hendrick Motorsports), and I'm so glad that I get the opportunity to work with him. We've had good cars all year long. We had some bad luck. But this is one of those races that makes up for a lot of bad times."
But before McMurray took the checkered flag, fans at the 1.5-mile track saw an action-packed race with a multitude of twists and turns.
Halfway through the first 20-lap segment, Kyle Busch passed pole winner Carl Edwards for the lead and held it until the first scheduled caution, but that was the end of the highlights for the driver of the #18 Toyota. Six laps into the second segment, Busch tapped the rear bumper of Clint Bowyer's Camry after Bowyer blocked Busch's moved to the inside. Busch took evasive action, diving toward the apron, when Bowyer's car got out of shape, but Bowyer's Toyota clipped Busch's and the #18 spun. Joey Logano couldn't avoid Busch and plowed into the spinning car, knocking both machines out of the race. "We had a good run through (Turns) 1 and 2 and off (Turn) 2," Busch explained after the accident. "Kurt (Busch) got real bottled up on the outside and slowed down, so I knew I was clear to go to the bottom and swoop down and try to get underneath Bowyer. And when I did, he blocked me, and I hit him, and he got squirrely, and then I was still under him, and it hit me and turned me around the wrong way on the backstretch and got in the outside wall."
After the subsequent restart on Lap 31, AJ Allmendinger's Chevrolet nosed into the inside wall on the backstretch after contact with Brian Vickers' Toyota. Kasey Kahne grabbed the lead for the first time on Lap 35 and pulled away to win the second segment. With four cars staying out between segments and two more changing just two tires, Kahne started eighth for segment No. 3, but on Lap 47 he passed Jamie McMurray (who had not changed tires) for the top spot. By the time the third segment ended, Kahne was a comfortable 1.411 seconds ahead, with Harvick giving chase. On the opening lap of the fourth segment, a mechanical failure in Jeff Gordon's car sent the #24 Chevy into the outside wall in Turn 3, collecting the Chevrolet of Martin Truex Jr. and the Ford of Greg Biffle.
Kahne had two brushes with the wall in segment No. 4, ending his strong run with the sort of disappointment that has plagued him in points races all season long. With the best average finish in the first four segments, Harvick entered pit road first for a mandatory four-time stop before the final 10-lap dash. McMurray, who made a huge track position gain by staying out between the third and fourth segments, was second onto pit road, followed by Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Edwards. But Edwards used the No. 1 pit stall to advantage, winning the race off pit road over McMurray and Harvick. Matt Kenseth started the final segment in the fourth spot, with Johnson and Earnhardt behind him in fifth and sixth.
Edwards, however, couldn't keep McMurray behind him, and after watching replays of the battle, the driver of the #99 Roush Fenway Racing Ford was already second-guessing himself. "Jamie just did a perfect job on the start," Edwards said. "I had him cleared for a minute. If I would have pulled in front of him in Turn 1, if I would have gone high, I think we would have won that race, but I was just so reluctant to give up the bottom. Jamie just did a perfect job. He ended up sweeping around the outside of me, dragging me down, and it was a drag race. My hat is off to him. He did a great job. He earned it. I drove as hard as I could while he was on the outside and he gave me just the right amount of room to not wreck me, but still beat me. If I had it to do over again, I'd do it differently but that's racing. You've just got to make the best decision you can and move on. It's a really tough one, though."
Though Edwards and McMurray inched ahead of each other at various junctures after then final restart, McMurray led at the finish line for each of the final 10 laps. Once he cleared Edwards three laps into the run, McMurray pulled away. The 31 laps McMurray led Saturday night were the first he had ever led in the All-Star Race.(NASCAR Wire Service)
See race results, segment results, four-segment average to pit and more on the 2014 All Star Race page - Results section.(5-17-2014)
Bass Pro Shops sponsors McMurray in All-Star Race: Bass Pro Shops will salute the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) this weekend at the Sprint All-Star Race with a special NWTF paint scheme on the #1 Chevy of Jamie McMurray. Through vital partnerships with state, federal and provincial wildlife agencies, the NWTF and its members have helped restore wild turkey populations throughout North America, spending more than $412 million to conserve nearly 17.2 million acres of habitat. The NWTF is a national nonprofit organization that is the leader in upland wildlife habitat conservation in North America. Founded in 1973, the NWTF is headquartered in Edgefield, S.C., and has local chapters in every state. The last time that the #1 team ran the Bass Pro Shops livery, Jamie McMurray drove the car to victory in the 2013 Sprint Unlimited at CMS to advance his way into the Sprint All-Star Race, where he started 20th and finished eighth (CGR), see images of the car on the #1 Team Schemes page.(5-16-2014)
McMurray discusses NASCAR's handling of Mears-Ambrose fight: Following NASCAR dishing out fines and probation to #9-Marcos Ambrose and #13-Casey Mears for their Richmond post-race scuffle, #1-Jamie McMurray was hoping neither driver would have gotten punished. "I'd hoped NASCAR would let that go...they've preached to all of us that they want us to be who we are, said McMurray. "I think it's good that you have some characters in the sport that -- I'm not calling Casey or Marcos out, but not everyone is willing to -- or is the type of guy that would punch someone, right? I think you can count on one hand the guys that would actually throw a punch. Everyone is talking about it. I'm building a house, and when I got up to the home site, that's all the guys wanted to talk about and they wanted to know if I have any inside scoop. I think it's great. I don't want to see anyone get punched, but it's been -- how many years ago has it been since someone actually punched someone? It's got everyone talking about the sport and I think it's good you see those guys' passion. I was really hoping that NASCAR was going to let it go or that the fines would be less because that's a huge -- $25,000 is massive. My opinion of that is that you won't see it happen again because I think people will think about that and be like, it's not worth it. It's not worth $25,000 for me to express exactly how I feel at this time." McMurray admitted there have been a few times where he's been in the same situation but that it's been a long time. "If it was happening every week, I think it would be different, but if they hadn't fined those guys, I don't think it would have happened again for a long time. I think it's very circumstantial with the two right guys, you know. I don't think Casey had any intentions of throwing a punch. Casey went over there and was wanting to get his point across. I don't think he had any -- when he got hit, you could tell he was like, I can't believe I just got punched, right? I don't think anyone had that mindset going into it."(PRN's Garagepass)(5-1-2014)
Bell Helicopter featured on the #1 at Texas: To change the way the world flies with superior vertical lift that saves lives, preserves freedom and provides customers with exceptional value. Bell Helicopter will be featured as the primary sponsor on the #1 Chevy this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. An industry leader with unmatched name recognition, Bell Helicopter was the first to obtain certification for a commercial helicopter. Over its rich history, Bell Helicopter has delivered more than 35,000 aircraft to customers around the world. Bell Helicopter is headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas (CGR), see imaged of the scheme on the #1 Team Schemes page.(4-5-2014)
Drivers say qualifying format creates dangers: NASCAR's new knockout qualifying format has been universally hailed as more exciting and interesting than the old single-car system. But for the second week in a row, drivers also said it's extremely dangerous. Since the only legal way for teams to cool their cars is to drive slowly around the track, there's a dramatic speed difference between drivers making qualifying runs and those driving as if they're in a construction zone.
"Riding around the bottom - we've got to do it, it's the only way to keep the engine cool - but that has got to be the most dangerous thing I've ever done in racing," #55-Brian Vickers said after Friday's session at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. "(#36-Reed Sorenson) went by me at 170 mph faster than I was going. Had he slipped or hit me, I'd be done. It would be so bad."
Teams need to cool their engines between attempts at fast laps in order to keep their cars from overheating. Teams are not allowed to cool their cars on pit road in between runs because it would require opening the hood to attach a cooling box. NASCAR does not want teams to make adjustments on pit road during the knockout sessions and since policing every open hood would be difficult, it is not permitted. As a result, the disparity in speed created some dicey situations - several of which occurred again Friday.
#15-Clint Bowyer, who qualified third, said he nearly collided with #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. during one run and called for a change due to the "dangerous" difference in speed. "We've got to stop that," he said. "...I about smoked him. That's not the guy you want to hit at a 140 mph deficit. (A collision is) going to hurt me and it might hurt Dale Jr., and that would be bad for business."
#1-Jamie McMurray, who was among the drivers to raise the safety issue at Phoenix, said he texted NASCAR Vice President of Competition Robin Pemberton a few days ago and was told, "Let's give it a couple weeks and just see what plays out." [NASCAR spokesman Kerry] Tharp echoed that sentiment in a statement to USA TODAY Sports on Friday. "We're only two race weekends in with the new qualifying format," he said. "It's something new and it's something that will take time to get used to. We will continue to look at it."(USA Today)(3-8-2014)
Ganassi explains why 'Earnhardt' is no longer part of team name: For the first time since 1996, there will not be a team in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series with "Earnhardt" in its corporate name. The string began in 1996 when the late Dale Earnhardt formed Dale Earnhardt Inc. In less than a decade, it had become one of the premier teams in Cup competition, with son and namesake Dale Earnhardt Jr. as its on-track figurehead. But once Junior left DEI for Hendrick Motorsports in 2008, the once-feared company began by the man they called The Intimidator began to slowly disappear. Now, the Earnhardt corporate name is essentially extinct. After an ill-fated and short-lived merger with Ginn Racing in mid-2007, team owner Teresa Earnhardt lent her company's name and some of its assets to fellow team owner Chip Ganassi, forming Earnhardt Ganassi Racing in 2009. In the year before Junior left the family fold, Earnhardt's widow also lent her late husband's surname to Richard Childress Racing to form a new business - known as Earnhardt-Childress Racing Technology - designed to build motors for both RCR and other teams that would lease the engines. But as the Earnhardt name lived on with other teams, Teresa Earnhardt withdrew more and more from being active in racing. She continued to oversee the still-thriving souvenir business that memorialized her late husband and kept his name and legend alive, but that was about it.
Now in 2014, what was Earnhardt Ganassi Racing for the last five seasons has reverted back to its original name prior to joining forces with Earnhardt, namely Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. And what was Earnhardt-Childress Racing Technology has quietly become simply ECR, with a team source telling MotorSportsTalk that "the E no longer stands for anything. It doesn't stand for Earnhardt. It's just ECR now."
Ganassi spoke to MotorSportsTalk at Daytona International Speedway on Friday about how the relationship with Teresa Earnhardt essentially disappeared with time, to the point where it no longer made sense to keep her late husband's surname as part of the team. "I wish I could explain it but I can't explain it," Ganassi said. "I don't have a good answer for you. We had a relationship and I don't know what happened. We can't get her on the phone; it's hard to try to communicate with somebody. She obviously has some other things on her plate, I guess, and that's her prerogative. She was never active in the team. I think she wanted to keep the name out there to some extent, and I don't know what Richard's (Petty) relationship is there (to Richard Petty Motorsports), but it's kinda the same thing. There's no ill will, I just don't have an answer, to tell you the truth. She just wasn't there anymore."(NBC Sports)(2-22-2014)
NASCAR drivers shut out in Rolex 24: After more than 2,400 miles and 23 1/2 hours of racing, the most prestigious North American sports car race came down to eight minutes and a final five-lap sprint. The first race of the unified United SportsCar Championship - the NASCAR-owned and IMSA-sanctioned series born from the merger between American Le Mans and Grand-AM - ended with a NASCAR flair. A late, full-course caution swallowed Joao Barbosa's 13-seccond lead and gave Max Angelelli a last-ditch chance to win the Rolex 24 at Daytona. Barbosa never gave him a chance, pulling away on the restart with 8:23 to race Sunday to give Action Express Racing its second victory in four years. Co-driver Sebastien Bourdais won the Rolex for the first time, while Christian Fittipaldi won for the second time.
Ford was shut out in its debut of its new EcoBoost engine. The #01 car of Chip Ganassi Racing team [including Jamie McMurray] wasn't able to defend its race win because of a series of problems that plagued the car starting very early in the race. Ganassi's #02 entry [including Kyle Larson] was taken out of contention when it developed a flat rear tire while Scott Dixon was running second with roughly five hours remaining.
Michael Shank Racing's entry [including A.J. Allmendinger], the 2012 race winning team, was halted by a broken gearbox.
CORE autosport finished a lap ahead of 8Star Motorsport to win the Prototype Challenge class.
Porsche North America claimed the GT Le Mans class with its No. 911 RSR entry.
The crowded GT Daytona class had the most thrilling - and controversial - finish of the race. The victory initially went to Flying Lizard Motorsports when IMSA officials penalized Level 5 Motorsports for avoidable contact on the last lap. But hours after the race ended, IMSA reversed its decision and gave the victory to Level 5.(Associated Press)(1-26-2014)
Chip Ganassi changes team name, drops Earnhardt from NASCAR operation: When Sprint Cup testing begins Thursday morning at Daytona International Speedway, there will be one well-known NASCAR name missing among the list of team owners. Earnhardt. The #1 and #42 Sprint Cup teams, which were run the last five years under the Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates banner, will now return to their former name: Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. The sign outside the North Carolina shop already has been changed, and stickers on the cars and patches on the driver and crew uniforms will carry the Chip Ganassi logo instead of the EGR logo. Ganassi officials confirmed the change Wednesday but had no comment on the financial structure of the current organization, which fields Sprint Cup cars for Jamie McMurray and Kyle Larson. Teresa Earnhardt, widow of seven-time Cup champion Dale Earnhardt and owner of Dale Earnhardt Inc., has not been involved in the day-to-day operations of the team and with the change apparently no longer has any financial stake in the NASCAR operation. There will be no change in the operation of the Ganassi teams, as Teresa Earnhardt has had little influence on the organization's day-to-day operations. Ganassi began using Hendrick Motorsports engines in 2013 in its two Cup cars.(in part from the Sporting News)(1-9-2014)
McMurray & Larson to run in Rolex 24: Seven-time and reigning GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series Champions and five-time and reigning Rolex 24 At Daytona Winners Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (CGRFS) announced its season-long program for the new IMSA-sanctioned TUDOR United SportsCar Championship (USCC) in 2014, including their driver line-up for the 52nd Rolex 24 At Daytona. Long-time partners Telcel and TELMEX return as the primary sponsors of the #01 Ford EcoBoost Riley in the Prototype category for the USCC season-long effort piloted by Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas in their eighth year together, after finishing the GRAND-AM era as most-successful driving duo in Rolex Sports Car Series history.
In addition, CGRFS will again field two Prototypes for the Rolex 24 At Daytona, featuring eight drivers that represent some of the best talent the motor racing world has to offer. Pruett and Rojas will unite with CGRFS NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) teammate Jamie McMurray and reigning Indy Lights Champion Sage Karam to form the lineup in the #01 Telcel/Target/Comfort Revolution Ford EcoBoost Riley, while the Team Target trio of drivers Scott Dixon, Tony Kanaan and Kyle Larson join sports car star Marino Franchitti in the #02 Target/Telcel/Big Machine Records Ford EcoBoost Riley. CGRFS previously announced it would utilize Ford's 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost racing engine for the 2014 USCC season.(EGR)(1-4-2014)
New pit coach at EGR: Earnhardt Ganassi Racing [#1 & #42 Chevy's] has hired long time Jack Man and coach Shaun Peet to coach next year. Peet is replacing coach Brett Cummings who had been at EGR the last few years. Peet brings a wealth of experience as an over the wall jack man as well as a coach. Over the last 10 or so years, Peet has spent time jacking at EGR, Red Bull Racing, Michael Waltrip Racing, and now back to EGR. When he was at Red Bull with coach Greg Miller, Peet helped coach all the developmental peetathletes and has a strong background in not only coaching but in strength conditioning. The last few years have been spent at MWR as the Jack Man for the #15 of Clint Bowyer.(Pit Talks)(12-18-2013)
Crew chief change for the #1 in 2014? UPDATE2: hearing that current #1 Earnhardt Ganassi Racing crew chief Kevin Manion, will depart from the team and head to Turner Scott Motorsports in a management role. Supposedly Keith Rodden will take over as Jamie McMurray's crew chief in 2014. Rodden is currently the race engineer for #5-Kasey Kahne.(11-5-2013)
UPDATE: Kasey Kahne engineer Keith Rodden declined last week to confirm rumors that he was headed to Earnhardt Ganassi Racing to be the crew chief for Jamie McMurray next year. EGR spokesman John Olguin said the team is still working on its 2014 plans. Chris Heroy is expected to return to the #42 team as crew chief for Kyle Larson, who is replacing Juan Pablo Montoya.(Sporting News)(11-9-2013) UPDATE2: Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (EGR) announced that Keith Rodden has been named crew chief for Jamie McMurray and the #1 Chevrolet SS. Rodden will assume the role effective immediately to prepare for the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) season. "We are very happy to get a crew chief that is the caliber of Keith," said EGR Owner Chip Ganassi. "He brings a lot of great experience with him to our organization. We are building the foundation for what we believe will be long-term success in our NASCAR operation and Keith fits into those plans perfectly. I look forward to having him in the organization and leading the #1 team."
Rodden joins EGR from Hendrick Motorsports where he was most recently in the role of lead engineer for the #5 Chevy. In his two seasons as the lead engineer on the #5, the team won four races and made the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup in both seasons. The Denver, NC native has over 10 years of NASCAR racing experience. Rodden began his racing career as a race engineer for Andy Petree Racing. He has also worked for Evernham Motorsports, Richard Petty Motorsports and Red Bull Racing in similar positions. In 2007, Rodden served as crew chief for Kasey Kahne for multiple races while filling in for Kenny Francis.
"I am excited and appreciative for this opportunity and can't wait to be just a small piece of an excellent team that Earnhardt Ganassi Racing is building," said Rodden. "Chip has quality people and is also building great race cars. This team has shown that they can win races and compete at the highest level of this sport and I look forward to working with Jamie and everyone on the team as we work to prepare for the 2014 season." Rodden is a graduate of North Carolina State University and with his wife Julie and their daughter Emmie, live in Kannapolis, NC.(EGR)(11-18-2013)
Franchitti retires from racing: Target Chip Ganassi Racing (TCGR) announced that three-time Indianapolis 500 Winner and four-time IndyCar Series Champion [and former NASCAR driver] Dario Franchitti will be unable to continue his auto racing career. The IndyCar Series legend ends his career with 31 Indy car wins (tied for eighth on the all-time list) and 33 poles (sixth on the all-time list).(CGR)(11-15-2013)
McMurray wins Talladega: #1-Jamie McMurray won the Camping World RV Sales 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway for his 1st win of 2013 and 7th career win.
#88-Earnhardt finished 2nd followed by #17-Stenhouse, Jr., #27-Menard, #18-Busch, #34-Ragan, #38-Gilliland, #56-Truex, Jr., #39-Newman, and #15-Bowyer.
The race ended under caution after #17-Stenhouse, Jr. got in #14-Austin Dillon on the backstretch of the final lap while Dillon was running 3rd. Dillon spun around and came back into traffic. He was hit in the rear by #13-Mears and briefly got airborne. Everyone was ok and no other drivers were involved.
Other Chase driver finishes: #16-Biffle (11th); #29-Harvick (12th); #48-Johnson (13th); #24-Gordon (14th); #22-Logano (16th); #99-Edwards (17th); #78-Busch (18th); #20-Kenseth (20th); #5-Kahne (36th).
Pole sitter #43-Almirola finished 21st
#48-Johnson took over the points lead heading to Martinsville. He's up by 4 points over #20-Kenseth.
There were 52 lead changes among 20 drivers and only 3 cautions for 10 yellow flag laps.
The average speed was 178.795mph. NASCAR no longer announces the track attendance.
See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Talladega Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Talladega Penalty Report (pdf).(10-20-2013)
Earnhardt Ganassi extends McMurray's contract: Jamie McMurray will return to Earnhardt Ganassi Racing's #1 car in 2014, team co-owner Chip Ganassi said Friday. Following the announcement of Kyle Larson as the replacement for Juan Pablo Montoya in the organization's #42 car, Ganassi confirmed McMurray's contract extension. "We just re-did Jamie's contract," Ganassi said Friday in confirming McMurray's return in 2014.(Sporting News)(8-31-2013)
Sad News - Floyd Ganassi: Statement from Chip Ganassi Racing Teams on the Passing of Floyd Ganassi: "It is with heavy hearts that everyone at Chip Ganassi Racing Teams offers our condolences to Chip Ganassi and the whole Ganassi family on the passing today of Chip's father, Floyd Ganassi. Everyone that knew Floyd knew that he was beloved at racetracks all across the country and leaves a long trail of great friends. Floyd Ganassi will be sorely missed by us all." Information on arrangements will be forthcoming.(CGR)(8-19-2013)
See full obit and service info at Pittsburgh Tribune.(8-21-2013)
Chip Ganassi Racing Teams Form Athletic Apparel Partnership: Chip Ganassi Racing Teams (CGRT) announced a multi-year partnership with C9 by Champion, Target's exclusive brand of performance activewear, to become the official athletic apparel provider to all six of the organization's race teams across the NASCAR, INDYCAR and GRAND-AM series. The performance collection will be worn for working out in the gym and training for race days. The lifestyle pieces will be worn by drivers, crew and executive staff at the track. In addition, the C9 by Champion branding will be carried on multiple assets across all six teams and eight drivers, including race cars, team transporters, firesuits and team gear.(EGR)(5-25-2013)
Earnhardt Ganassi switching to Hendrick engines: The "Earnhardt" in Earnhardt-Childress Racing won't use the company's engines beginning in 2013. Earnhardt Ganassi Racing will use motors leased from Hendrick Motorsports starting next season, a team representative told reporters at Texas Motor Speedway on Friday. The move is surprising considering ECR was formed as a joint engine-building effort between Earnhardt Ganassi and Richard Childress Racing. EGR has struggled over the last two seasons with drivers #42-Juan Pablo Montoya and #1-Jamie McMurray, and team owner Chip Ganassi apparently felt a change was necessary in the engine program. RCR team owner Richard Childress said he wasn't surprised by Ganassi's decision to pull out of ECR and said he's been aware of the possibility for quite some time. Childress said his team will have "a couple" new customers next season - though he wouldn't say who - and also has an existing sponsor in Furniture Row Racing. ECR will retain its name because the teams "have a different relationship with the engines," Childress said.(SB Nation)(11-2-2012)
Liftmaster renewals partnership with EGR: LiftMaster, the world's number one brand of professionally installed garage door openers, gate operators and commercial door operators, announced recently that it will extend its partnership with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates and driver Jamie McMurray through 2014. The partnership will include LiftMaster as the primary sponsor on the #1 Chevy driven by 2010 Daytona 500 winner Jamie McMurray. In addition to the one-race primary sponsorship, LiftMaster's branding will be prominent on the #1 Chevy for the remaining NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, along with placement on McMurray's firesuit and the #1 team uniforms. To coincide with the partnership extension with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing and Jamie McMurray, LiftMaster renewed its alliance with JMI (Just Marketing International), their motorsports agency of record. LiftMaster will look to JMI to maximize its NASCAR assets and execute on-site activation and regional programming with LiftMaster's 4,000 independent dealers.(Earnhardt Ganassi Racing)(10-12-2012)
Richmond International Raceway
Happy Hour Practice:
Friday, September 5, 2014, 1:00pm/et
Born in SEPTEMBER
2 Matt Borland, Gene Nead, Corrie Stott, Brian Keselowski, Alli Owens, Bob Margolis
3 Brandon Lee, Pat Frossard, Jerry Pitts, Marc Mitchell, Russell Baxter
4 Chad Blount, Bob Jenkins, Mike Mulhern, Ken Butler, Bobby Wawak
5 Jack Daniel, Scott Robinson
6 Jeff Green, Kenny Bernstein, Linda Smokested
7 ESPN, Andy Santerre, Donnie Allison
8 Jim Hunter, Frank Warren, Blake Bjorklund, David Ray Boggs, Larry Dickson, A J Cox, Buddy Shuman, Don Coble, Pam Coble
9 Felix Sabates, Jerry Nadeau, Jeff Hammond, Wayne Hamby, Phil Barkdoll, Joseph Fenning, Kyle Grissom
10 Bobby Hillis, Tommy Gale, Ralph Moody, John Kenny
11 Bill Whittington, Gary Graves, Joy Fair, Joe Lee Johnson, Bob Harris, Ellen Fuscellaro, Butch Zervakis
12 Myrna 'Mom' Adamczyk, Ricky Rudd, Jason Statham, Ken Ragan, Ron Keselowski, Ford Martin, Todd Cable, John Sacco
13 Mike Garvey, Mark Garrow, Carey Wimbish, Frank Kerr
14 Tony Furr, Dominic Dobson
15 Jimmy Fennig, Wayne Harron, Jim Smith, J.C. Stout, Paulie Harraka
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 , 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
24 Glenn Allen Jr., Allen Bestwick
25 Jack Donohue, Jimmy Florian, Scott Punch, Dan Koozer
26 Bill France Sr., Joe Nemechek, Rob Moroso, Wayne Cloth, Tina Dillon, Marty Robbins
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