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THE NEXT Winston Cup RACE
NEWS, STATS and INFO

THE RACE: Checker Auto Parts 500

Winston Cup Race #35 of 36 for the 2002 Winston Cup season
Updated: often, leading up to the race

  • Race: Sunday, November 10, 2002 in Phoenix, AZ

  • TV: NBC - 2:30pm/et

  • Time Difference: Phoenix is two hours behind Eastern time(ET), the Phoenix, Arizona area does NOT turn back the clock and is always on Standard time, all times here are ET. Here is a site that explains it: webexhibits.org/daylightsaving/f.html

  • Race re-air: TNT on Tues, Nov 12th at 2:00am/et; Speed Channel on Wed, Nov 13th, 8:00pm/et; Thurs, Nov 14th, 1:00am/et and again at 12:00noon/et.

  • Pre-Race Show: NBC - 2:00pm/et - Hosted by Bill Weber

  • Pay Per View/NASCAR In Demand: www.indemand.com

  • NASCAR.com's NASCAR on TV

  • Announcers: Allen Bestwick, Benny Parsons and Wally Dallenbach

  • Pit Reporters: Bill Weber, Matt Yocum, Marty Snider, Dave Burns

  • Purse/Race Awards: $3,881,518 (last year $3,248,538)

  • Entry List Link at: NASCAR.com

  • 2001 Race Winner: Jeff Burton, 102.613mph, started 3rd

  • Race Record: Tony Stewart, Nov 1999, 118.132mph

  • Track/Race Length: 1.0 mile oval, 312 laps, 312 miles/500km

  • Pit Road Speed: 45mph


    Practice

  • Practice: Friday, November 8th, 12:30 - 2:30pm/et; Saturday, November 9th, 10:30 - 11:15am/et.

  • Happy Hour Practice: Saturday, November 9th, 12:15 - 1:00pm/et on TV-Speed Channel.


    Qualifying

  • Qualifying Draw: Friday, November 8th, 11:30am/et

  • Qualfying Order: at or NASCAR.com

  • Qualifying: 2 laps for positions 1-36, Friday, November 8th at 5:05pm/et, TV-Speed Channel and live via MRN Radio, XM Satellite Radio and via NASCAR.com's Racecast (paid). Will be re-aired at 7:00pm/et on and at 12:00mid/et on Sat Nov 9th.

  • NASCAR Online will have live lap-by-lap coverage of Winston Cup qualifying via the web (NOTE: this is a paid subscription service).

  • Second-Round Qualifying: there is no longer a 2nd round of qualifying (since the 2001 season)

  • Track/Event Qualifying Record: Rusty Wallace, Nov 2000, 134.178mph

  • Last Year's Pole Sitter: Casey Atwood, 131.296, finished 14th.


    Track Specs:
    Degree of Banking: Turns 1-2: 11 degrees; Turns 3-4: 9 degrees
    Frontstretch: Length: 1,179 feet, Banking: None
    Backstretch: Length: 1,551 feet, Banking: None
    Pit Road: Length: 1,140
    Grandstand seating: 76,812
  • Track Homepage: Phoenix International Raceway


    PAST RACE/POLE WINNERS at Phoenix

    Phoenix Race/Pole Wins Page


    RACE BONUS INFO

  • The NASCAR Winston Cup Leader Bonus is $300,000 at Phoenix Intl Raceway for leading the points and winning the race (Sterling Marlin last won the award, $20,000 at Darlington on March 17, 2002). The $360,000 annual award is paid at $10,000 per race to the point leader at the end of each event if he is also the winner. The award increases by $10,000 each week the it goes unclaimed. If the point leader is not the race winner at the end of the year, the balance of the award is distributed among the top-10 finisher in the point standings. The all time record WAS $190,000 for Bobby Labonte's win at Indy in 2000.(11-3-2002)


WEATHER, TV/RADIO COVERAGE
LOCAL NEWS, TRACK/FAN INFO

Radio Coverage:
Motor Racing Network(MRN)
including Internet coverage (NOTE: now a paid subsription thru NASCAR.com) and XM Satellite - NASCAR Radio - Channel 144
Announcers: Barney Hall, Joe Moore
Turn Reporters: Dan Hubbard, Mike Bagley
Pit Reporters: Jim Phillips, Winston Kelley, Jason Toy


Satellite/Backhaul Listing's:
Satellite/Backhaul Listing's: Stutzman Computer Service/Sales - Racing Feed Locations
Gofastmotorsports.com


Scanner Frequencies:
are linked on my Scanner Freq/Equipment Links Page



Local Newspaper and other Sites that cover the Phoenix, AZ Area:
Jayski's Story/Column/Article Links Page
Arizona Family
Arizona.com
Arizona Republic
Arizona Silver Belt
Easy Valley Tribune


Weather Forecast for Phoenix, AZ area:
The Weather Channel
Weather Underground
Weather Point
National Weather Service
Intellicast - NASCAR weather

Click for Phoenix, Arizona Forecast



Track/Travel/Camping Info for the Fans:
ARS Racing Outlet - Phoenix Review


Driver Appearances:
any I know of are listed on my Driver Appearances/Chats page with info and links


TV Coverage/Info/News Pages:
Race Fan TV


IN-CAR AUDIO SITES


QUALIFYING, PRACTICE and RESULTS
news and links

  • Phoenix Rumblings: It was pit strategy at its finest again today as Robbie Reiser rolled the dice and went with a two-tire stop for track position.....and Matt Kenseth held that position for the final 52 circuits as he put his #17 DeWalt Ford in Victory Lane for the 5th time this season. In winning today's Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, Kenseth becomes the only driver to record 6 wins in Cup history....interestingly enough no other driver has that number. He's now 56th on the all-time list. The win for Roush Racing was the 9th of the season, with only one coming from Mark Martin and none from Jeff Burton. Something about those young drivers again. Rusty Wallace (2nd) had his best finish since he was 2nd at Bristol in August. Dave Blaney (7th) had his best finish since he was 6th at Homestead in November of last year. Elliott Saddler (10th) had his best finish since he was 10th at Loudon in July. Kenny Wallace (11th) had his best finish since he was 10th at Rockingham in February.
    STREAKIN....Mark Martin has 4 Top-10's in a row. Dale Earnhardt Jr. has 6 Top-10's in the last 7 races. Kurt Busch has 5 Top-10's in the last 6 races.
    This Week's Elevator....UP: A tie for Operator of the Week between Matt Kenseth (+27) and Rusty Wallace (+27), followed by Jimmie Johnson (+22). DOWN: The Big Dropper was Jamie McMurray (-28), followed by Joe Nemechek (-25), Christian Fittipaldi (-24), and Scott Wimmer (-23). For Kenseth and Rusty, this is their 4th Ops of the year....they're one behind Dale Jarrett for this most important award. Mark Martin has managed to take it to Homestead. He whittled 23 points off Tony Stewart's lead and Tony needs to finish 22nd or better at Homestead (a track he eats up) next week to guarantee the Championship (no matter what Mark does). The big race in the points will be for spots 3-7. That spread is a whopping 23 markers...with 3rd to 6th only separated by 9 points. That's worth about $500K at the banquet.(Stock Car Fans)(11-10-2002)

  • Kenseth wins at Phoenix: #17-Matt Kenseth won the Checker Auto Parts 500k at Phoenix, his 5th win of the 2002 year and 6th of his career. #2-Wallace finished 2nd, the 4th time this year. Points leaders #20-Stewart finished 8th with #6-Mark Martin finishing 4th and picking up 23 points and now Martin trails by 89. Stewart needs to finish 22nd at Homestead and he will win the Winston Cup Championship. The unofficial top 10:

    #17-Matt Kenseth (55 laps led)
    #2-Rusty Wallace
    #24-Jeff Gordon (16 laps led)
    #6-Mark Martin (2 laps led)
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr (105 laps led)

    #97-Kurt Busch (117 laps led)
    #77-Dave Blaney (1 lap led)
    #20-Tony Stewart
    #88-Dale Jarrett
    #21-Elliott Sadler

    Cars on the lead lap: 17
    DNF's: #74-Raines(out-?); #27-Wimmer(out-accident); #44-Fittipaldi(out-accident); #18-Labonte(out-engine); #40-McMurray(out-accident);
    Lap Leaders(9): #12-Newman(12); #8-Earnhardt Jr(105); #77-Blanley(1); #17-Kenseth(55); #24-Gordon(16); #97-Busch(117); #6-Martin(2); #48-Johnson(1); #10-Benson(1);

    Cautions 4 for 17 laps:
    Caution 4 laps 257-263: #44-Fittipaldi and #7-Leffler got together with Fittipaldi spinning around and hitting the wall ahrd, Fittipaldi is ok and walked away.
    Caution 3 laps 141-145: Debris on the track
    Caution 2 laps 131-136: #27-Wimmer crashes on the front stretch after he got together with #31-Gordon
    Caution 1 laps 27-29: #40-McMurray crashed after coming down on #36-Schrader. pushing the rear of the #40 in.
    NOTES: Green flag stops happened around laps 215-228. #17-Kenseth ran out of gas in the pits on lap 121. #8-Earnhardt Jr ran out of gas while leading on lap 118. Green flag pitstops occured between laps 105-120 range. During the 1st caustion, all the leaders came in, during the stops #97-Busch and #23-Wallace got together in the pits, ripping a hole in the drivers door. #74-Raines on pit road just before the green flag as NASCAR saw something leaking from the car.
    Race Re-Air:The race will be re-aired on TNT, Tues, Nov 12th, 2:00am/et; Speed Channel on Wed, Nov 13th, 8:00pm/et and Thurs, Nov 14th, 1:00am/et and at 12:00noon/et.
    Results: or NASCAR.com.(11-10-2002)

  • Unofficial Drivers Points after Phoenix:
    #20-Tony Stewart 4691
    #6-Mark Martin -89 (-64 without the penalty)
    #97-Kurt Busch -230
    #48-Jimmie Johnson -238
    #2-Rusty Wallace -238
    #24-Jeff Gordon -239
    #12-Ryan Newman -253
    Standings at: .(11-10-2002)

  • To the Back: #26-Todd Bodine's team changed the engine after Saturday's practice and will have to fall to the rear of the field before the green flag.(11-10-2002)

  • Happy Hour practice at Phoenix is over, the fastest were:
    #23-Wallace 128.553mph
    #29-Harvick 128.164
    #27-Wimmer 128.114
    slowest were:
    #83-Hornaday 125.646 #49-Cope 125.615
    #5-Labonte 125.387
    For speeds see .(11-9-2002)

  • Biffle helps out Hamilton: Car owner Andy Petree and crew chief Jimmy Elledge decided to put BGN points leader Greg Biffle in the #55 Chevy during Saturday's first practice session. The team's regular driver, Bobby Hamilton, was complaining the engine didn't pull off the corners. So the team turned to Biffle, who substituted for Hamilton earlier this season in the #55 when Hamilton was injured. However, Biffle was only 36th fastest in the practice session and complained of some of the same problems. Hamilton returned to the car for Saturday's final practice [he was 37th fastest].()(11-10-2002)

  • Johnson fastest in Saturday AM Practice at Phoenix. The fastest in practice were:
    #48-Johnson 129.218
    #19-Mayfield 129.663
    #23-Wallace 128.604
    slowest were:
    #4-Skinner 126.249
    #83-Hornaday 125.046
    #44-Fittipaldi 125.927
    See speeds at .(11-9-2002)

  • Magic Number is 11th not 8th since penalty AND: #20-Tony Stewart can clinch the Winston Cup Drivers Championship buy finishing 11th or better in each of the last two races and no one can catch him, needs to average 129 points a race the last two races, 11th is worth 130. The most #6-Mark Martin can get is 4807 (4437 + 370 [185x2]), so 4807 - 4549 = 258, 258/2 = 129. 11th is worth 130 points, or a 12th (worth 127) and lead a lap for 5 points will clinch it for Stewart.(11-3/4-2002)
    AND Only the top seven drivers in the points race still have a mathematical chance of winning this year's title. Any driver more than 151 points out of the lead after the race in Phoenix this coming weekend will be eliminated from the championship race. After Sunday's race, only Mark Martin is within 151 points of Stewart.(as long as they start the last race...of course)(11-4-2002)
    AND Jim Utter from has some info - How the Cup title could be won, or not: There are several scenarios under which Tony Stewart could wrap up his first Winston Cup championship this weekend at Phoenix. If Stewart gained 73 points on second-place Mark Martin, he would leave with a 185-point lead and would win the title even if he did not race at the season finale at Homestead, Fla., next weekend. If Stewart gained just 39 points on Martin, he would need only to take the green-flag at the season finale to win the championship. And finally, if Stewart finished 11th or better in the final two races, he would win the title regardless of the performance of any other driver. Several other scenarios come into play, based on Martin's performance. Among them: Should Martin finish 16th or higher at Phoenix, Stewart couldn't clinch the title this weekend, and Martin could not take the points lead this weekend if Stewart finished 39th or better. In the event the points battle ended up a tie, the driver with the most wins would be the champion. Right now that is Stewart with three to Martin's one. However, should Martin win the final two races, they would be tied and the tie-breaker would move to second-place finishes, then third, and so forth to determine a champion.()(11-8-2002)

  • Two withdraw: During Speed Channel coverage of qualifying at Phoenix, it was mentioned that #93-Mike Harmon crashed in practice and the car was too damaged to fix in time and the team does not have a backup. Also #47-Lance Hooper lost an engine in practice and crashed and also withdrew.(11-8-2002)

  • Newman wins pole at Phoenix: #12-Ryan Newman won the Bud Pole for the Checker Auto Parts 500k at Phoenix with a speed of 132.655mph, his 6th of the year, a new Rookie record (he was tied with Davey Allison) and the 7th of his career. #43-John Andretti is on the outside pole with a speed of 132.587. #44-Christian Fittipaldi will make his Winston Cup debut 17th after running a lap of 131.009mph.(11-8-2002)

  • Pole Progression at Phoenix: (who had the pole first, who got it next and who ended up with it)
    #45-Kyle Petty, 1st out to qualify, 131.004, starts 18th
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr, 3rd out, 132.333, starts 3rd
    #12-Ryan Newman, 37th out, 132.655, starts on the pole
    (11-8-2002)

    Qualifying Results from Phoenix:

    Pos Sched
    Qual
    Pos
    Actual
    Qual
    Pos
    Car# Driver Manu Qual Speed Friday
    Practice
    Speed
    Practice
    Speed
    Rank
    Diff
    Qual vs
    Prac
    Provisional
    Rank
    1 38 37 12 Ryan Newman Ford 132.655 132.969 1 -0.314 5
    2 42 40 43 John Andretti Dodge 132.587 132.324 2 0.263 29
    3 3 3 8 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevy 132.333 131.810 5 0.523 12
    4 25 24 24 Jeff Gordon Chevy 132.285 131.651 7 0.634 8
    5 26 25 77 Dave Blaney Ford 132.115 131.277 14 0.838 19
    6 20 20 23 Kenny Wallace Dodge 131.849 132.222 3 -0.373 32/out
    7 16 16 6 Mark Martin Ford 131.728 131.243 15 0.485 2
    8 10 10 25 Joe Nemechek Chevy 131.598 131.603 8 -0.005 35
    9 45 43 31 Robby Gordon Chevy 131.488 130.563 26 0.925 20
    10 43 41 41 Jimmy Spencer Dodge 131.464 131.325 11 0.139 25
    11 33 32 19 Jeremy Mayfield Dodge 131.420 131.420 10 0 26
    12 8 8 40 Jamie McMurray Dodge 131.344 130.171 34 1.173 3
    13 6 6 97 Kurt Busch Ford 131.090 131.666 6 -0.576 6
    14 9 9 9 Bill Elliott Dodge 131.076 131.296 12 -0.22 14
    15 50 48 21 Elliott Sadler Ford 131.033 131.286 13 -0.253 27
    16 37 36 20 Tony Stewart Pontiac 131.014 131.176 18 -0.162 1
    17 49 47 44 Christian Fittipaldi Dodge 131.009 129.950 38 1.059 39
    18 1 1 45 Kyle Petty Dodge 131.004 129.454 40 1.55 21
    19 28 27 27 Scott Wimmer Dodge 130.947 130.857 22 0.09 58
    20 7 7 99 Jeff Burton Ford 130.942 131.000 19 -0.058 13
    21 27 26 36 Ken Schrader Pontiac 130.942 131.181 17 -0.239 33
    22 4 4 83 Ron Hornaday Chevy 130.942 130.525 28 0.417 70
    23 24 23 10 Johnny Benson Pontiac 130.900 130.544 27 0.356 23
    24 19 19 28 Ricky Rudd Ford 130.852 130.676 25 0.176 11
    25 29 28 29 Kevin Harvick Chevy 130.809 130.914 20 -0.105 22
    26 18 18 22 Ward Burton Dodge 130.809 131.214 16 -0.405 28
    27 32 31 88 Dale Jarrett Ford 130.695 132.008 4 -1.313 10
    28 46 44 17 Matt Kenseth Ford 130.615 130.138 35 0.477 9
    29 34 33 2 Rusty Wallace Ford 130.534 130.866 21 -0.332 7
    30 40 38 26 Todd Bodine Ford 130.463 129.861 39 0.602 36
    31 51 49 5 Terry Labonte Chevy 130.406 130.213 33 0.193 24
    32 11 11 1 Steve Park Chevy 130.402 130.501 29 -0.099 31
    33 5 5 18 Bobby Labonte Pontiac 130.317 130.119 36 0.198 17
    34 17 17 4 Mike Skinner Chevy 130.270 128.935 45 1.335 34
    35 41 39 32 Ricky Craven Ford 130.260 129.361 43 0.899 16
    36 47 45 7 Jason Leffler Dodge 130.222 130.463 30 -0.241 38
    37 23 22 48 Jimmie Johnson Chevy 130.086 131.507 9 -1.421 4
    38 13 13 74 Tony Raines Chevy 129.823 129.102 44 0.721 45
    39 22 21 07 Ted Musgrave Dodge 129.748 130.340 31 -0.592 50
    40 31 30 15 Michael Waltrip Chevy 129.692 130.705 24 -1.013 15
    41 30 29 55 Bobby Hamilton Chevy 129.585 130.838 23 -1.253 30
    42 48 46 60 Jack Sprague Chevy 129.357 129.375 42 -0.018 61
    43 44 42 30 Jeff Green Chevy 129.273 129.389 41 -0.116 18
    44 12 12 11 Brett Bodine Ford 129.273 129.973 37 -0.7 40/out
    45 14 14 14 Mike Wallace Pontiac 129.111 130.251 32 -1.14 37
    46 2 2 49 Derrike Cope Dodge 128.760 128.894 46 -0.134 42
    47 36 35 51 Jerry Robertson Dodge 128.233 126.761 49 1.472 55
    48 15 15 89 Morgan Shepherd Ford 127.737 127.632 48 0.105 51
    49 35 34 37 Jeff Jefferson Pontiac 126.935 126.747 50 0.188 53
    W 21 X 47 Lance Hooper Ford withdrew 127.768 47 x none
    W 39 X 93 Mike Harmon Ford withdrew 124.430 51 x none


    PROVISIONALS and MISSES

    Pos Sched
    Qual
    Pos
    Actual
    Qual
    Pos
    Car# Driver Manu Qual Speed Friday
    Practice
    Speed
    Practice
    Speed
    Rank
    Diff
    Qual vs
    Prac
    Provisional
    Rank
    37 23 22 48 Jimmie Johnson Chevy 130.086 131.507 9 -1.421 4
    38 31 30 15 Michael Waltrip Chevy 129.692 130.705 24 -1.013 15
    39 44 42 30 Jeff Green Chevy 129.273 129.389 41 -0.116 18
    40 30 29 55 Bobby Hamilton Chevy 129.585 130.838 23 -1.253 30
    41 14 14 14 Mike Wallace Pontiac 129.111 130.251 32 -1.14 37
    42 2 2 49 Derrike Cope Dodge 128.76 128.894 46 -0.134 42
    43 13 13 74 Tony Raines Chevy 129.823 129.102 44 0.721 45
    miss 12 12 11 Brett Bodine Ford 129.273 129.973 37 -0.7 40/out
    miss 22 21 07 Ted Musgrave Dodge 129.748 130.340 31 -0.592 50
    miss 15 15 89 Morgan Shepherd Ford 127.737 127.632 48 0.105 51
    miss 35 34 37 Jeff Jefferson Pontiac 126.935 126.747 50 0.188 53
    miss 36 35 51 Jerry Robertson Dodge 128.233 126.761 49 1.472 55
    miss 48 46 60 Jack Sprague Chevy 129.357 129.375 42 -0.018 61
    W 21 X 47 Lance Hooper Ford withdrew 127.768 47 x none
    W 39 X 93 Mike Harmon Ford withdrew 124.43 51 x none


    (Speeds compiled from watching Speed Channel and listening to MRN radio)

  • Lineup/Qual Results also at:

    MotorsportsOne
    NASCAR.com(11-8-2002)

  • Friday Practice at Phoenix is over, the fastest were:
    #12-Newman 132.969
    #43-Andretti 132.324
    #23-Wallace 132.222
    slowest were
    #51-Robertson 126.761
    #37-Jefferson 126.747
    #93-Harmon 124.430.
    For speeds see .(11-8-2002)

  • Qualifying Order is up for Phoenix. 51 cars/drivers listed, going for 43 spots. First scheduled out is #45-Kyle Petty, last scheduled out is #5-Terry Labonte. Lance Hooper is listed in the #47, not #90, not sure if they are still working with Donlavey Racing for the race or not. Two teams are out of provisionals #23-Kenny Wallace and #11-Brett Bodine.(11-8-2002)

  • Qualfying Order: at or NASCAR.com

  • Who are? Jerry Robertson, Jeff Jefferson and Lance Hooper who are attempting to make the Cup race this week at Phoenix? See some info at: jerryrobertsonracing.com (a little outdated but gives some background); or RacingWest: Jeff Jefferson; or www.lancehooper.com.(11-7-2002)

  • Entry List is up for the Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix. 51 teams listed including: #07-Ted Musgrave, #27-Scott Wimmer, #37-Jeff Jefferson, #44-Christian Fittipaldi, #47-Lance Hooper, #49-Derrike Cope, #51-Jerry Robertson, #60-Jack Sprague, #74-Tony Raines, #83-Ron Hornaday, #89-Morgan Shepherd and #93-Mike Harmon.(11-4-2002)

  • Entry List Link at: NASCAR.com

  • How to break a tie during qualifying?(same speed/time) When drivers are tied for a starting spot during qualifying, it is broken by owners points standings(not drivers). For provisionals standings see the Jayski's Provisional Status page

  • an interesting point: When NASCAR officials decided to disallow Jerry Nadeau's qualifying time at Daytona in Feb 2001, it raised an interesting question. With the Winston Cup series having only one round of qualifying the rest of the season, what happens if an unapproved part is found? According to NASCAR, drivers no longer have to post an official qualifying time to use a provisional, they only have to practice. So a driver could have a penalty on a qualifying issue but still have access to one of the seven provisionals for the race(Richmond Times Dispatch)(2-11-2001)

  • Links: Practice speeds, qualifying and results can be found at these sites: NASCAR Online and on my Race Results/Points page


TRACK/RACE NEWS

  • McGriff co-grand marshal at PIR: Checker Auto Parts has announced that NASCAR legend Hershel McGriff, will join CSK Auto, Inc. CEO Maynard Jenkins as Grand Marshal for the November 10th Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Pennzoil NASCAR Winston Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR). McGriff who recently retired from NASCAR competition at the age of 74 will be on hand as PIR and Checker Auto Parts celebrate the career of one of the west's most noted NASCAR drivers of the past 50 years. McGriff began his racing career at the age of 17 in Portland, Oregon, where he would borrow his father's 1940 Hudson, tie the doors shut, paint a number on the side of the car and go racing. Early in his racing career McGriff met Bill France Sr. at the Pan American road race in Mexico and they became great friends. France later invited McGriff to compete in the very first Southern 500 at Darlington, where he finished 9th after driving his ˜race car" cross-country before driving it back home. In 1954 McGriff moved to Daytona Beach to race more while helping France build NASCAR through public relations appearances. McGriff has competed against three generations of Petty's and raced in four different decades. He is the all-time race-winner at Riverside, and he even raced a NASCAR Winston Cup Series car in the 24 hours of LeMans. He's been a NASCAR Winston West Series champion and was named that series' Most Popular Driver a record 12 consecutive years. He also has the distinction of being named one of NASCAR's 50 Greatest Drivers. Tickets for any and all races are available at the track downtown ticket office, 3rd Street and Van Buren, in the Arizona Center; by phone, at 602-252-2227, or online at www.phoenixinternationalraceway.com.(PIR PR)(11-5-2002)

  • Def Leppard at Phoenix: As if four NASCAR-sanctioned races, two evening concerts at the Oasis, an expanded midway and several driver appearances at various fan hospitality areas weren't enough, Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) announced that internationally-acclaimed rock band Def Leppard will entertain race fans prior to the start of the Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Pennzoil on Sunday, November 10. Widely regarded as one of the main architects of the anthemic pop/metal and larger than life rock n' roll, Def Leppard recently released their tenth album, "X", on July 30th on Island Records. Their newest album debuted at #11 on Billboard's Top 200, selling over 71,000 in just one week. To date, the band has sold over 45 million albums, a feat not many bands and only a handful of British artists have been able to achieve. The band is scheduled to perform songs from their newest album prior to driver introductions on Sunday morning along PIR's frontstretch. Tickets for any and all races are available at the track downtown ticket office, 3rd Street and Van Buren, in the Arizona Center; by phone, at 602-252-2227, or online at www.phoenixinternationalraceway.com.(PIR PR)(10-30-2002)

  • Phoenix Nearly Sold Out: Tickets for the Nov. 10 Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway are going fast - so fast that racetrack officials expect the race to be sold out midway through next week. Although an unlimited number of hillside tickets overlooking Turns 3 and 4 are available for $30 ($5 discount coupons at Circle K), reserved grandstand seating is limited. The only remaining seats are priced at $35 and $45 and are located near the dogleg along the backstretch. Remaining tickets for the NASCAR Busch Series Bashas' 200 on Nov. 9 are priced at $45 and $50. The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Silverado 150 on Nov. 8 has $25, $30 and $35 tickets left, and tickets for the NASCAR Featherlite Southwest Series Cruise America 125 on Nov. 7 are priced at $15.(Arizona Republic)(10-25-2002)

  • How to Calculate Track Speeds: use the formula Speed = Distance divided by Time. Distance is Track Length, and Lap Time into Hours. Once hour is 3600 seconds, so the calculation for a 48 second lap at Daytona(2.5 miles) would be: Speed = 2.5 x (3600/48), = 2.5 x 75 = 187.500mph. For a 19 second lap at Bristol(.533 miles): Speed = .533 x (3600/19), = .533 x 189.474 = a speed of 100.990mph

  • Past track news: posted in the past at Jayski's Past Track News/Rumors - Phoenix Intl Raceway


DRIVER/TEAM NEWS

  • Doubling Up at Phoenix, two triple up: Many drivers are pulling double duty at Phoenix this weekend. Drivers attempting to make both the Cup and BGN races are: Jimmy Spencer (#41 Cup and #1 BGN); Mile Wallace (#14 and #4); Jeff Burton (#99 and #9); Jeff Green (#30 and #21); Scott Wimmer (#27 and #23); Ron Hornaday (#83 and #26); Jamie McMurray (#40 and #27); Tony Raines (#74 and #33); Kenny Wallace (#23 and #48); Todd Bodine (#26 and #92); and Mike Harmon (#93 and #44). Drivers entered in the Cup and CTS races: Ted Musgrave (#07 Cup and #1 CTS/Truck); Jason Leffler (#7 and #2); Morgan Shepherd (#89 and #21); and Lance Hooper (#90 and #86). One driver is listed in the BGN and CTS races: Stacy Compton in the #59 BGN and #17 CTS vehicles. One driver, Kevin Harvick, is entered in THREE races the CTS(#6), BGN(#29) and Cup(#29) races and Ken Schrader will run the Cup race (#36), the CTS race (#52) and the Southwest race.(11-6-2002)

  • Cope back in the #49 at Phoenix: Using Atlanta as something of a "brush-up" race, Derrike Cope and the #49 BAM Racing Dodge are set for the final two races of the 2002 Cup season. Cope will drive for the team in Sunday’s Checker 500k at Phoenix and next week’s Ford 400 at Homestead. Cope tested at Phoenix two days last week, and the team was excited with the results.(Williams Company PR)(11-7-2002)

  • Team Penske to honor Dixon: To celebrate Larry Dixon's NHRA Top Fuel Championship, a special logo will be placed on both the #2-Rusty Wallace and #12-Ryan Newman Ford race cars for this weekend's Phoenix race. In addition, for the in-car camera in Rusty's car, sponsor Miller Brewing is placing a dash board sign featuring the Lite logo and the message: "Congratulations Larry Dixon and Don Prudhomme Snake Racing NHRA Powerade 2002 Top Fuel Champions."(Tom Roberts PR)(11-6-2002)

  • Fittipaldi Debut at Phoenix: Christian Fittipaldi will make his NASCAR Winston Cup debut this week at the one-mile Phoenix International Raceway. He will run the #44 Georgia-Pacific/Brawny Dodge in Sunday’s Checker Auto Parts 500. "I’m excited with the opportunity and looking forward to running my first Winston Cup race," said Fittipaldi, nephew of open wheel legend Emerson Fittipaldi. "I have tested several times and have run some Busch races. I am getting a feel for these cars, and I’m looking forward to seeing what they are like with 42 others on the track with you at the same time," he said. Fittipaldi will drive a combination Winston Cup, BGN and ARCA schedule next season for Petty Enterprises. Still looking for sponsorship for that effort, Fittipaldi and Petty Enterprises plan on using this unique schedule to fine-tune his stock car racing skills before running a full Winston Cup schedule in 2004. "Christian has been successful in Formula One and successful in CART, and we think he is going to be very successful in Winston Cup too," said Kyle Petty, CEO of Petty Enterprises. "He has adjusted to these big stock cars pretty quickly, and has tested well everywhere we have gone with him. His Phoenix test last week was really good, and he is going to have a good weekend. We are continuing our search for a sponsor for him for next year, and there has been a lot of interest in this program from potential sponsors," Petty continued. "We want to find someone who fits well with General Mills and Georgia-Pacific." Petty will drive the #45 Georgia-Pacific/Brawny Dodge next season for Petty Enterprises.(Williams Company)(11-5-2002)

  • Schrader and the Pooches: This weekend at Phoenix, #36-Ken Schrader will be racing for search and rescue dogs across the country. It's all part of a new promotion by Pedigree Food for Dogs and Petsmart called Pedigree To The Rescue. For every kilometer that Schrader completes during the Winston Cup race on Sunday, November 10th, Pedigree will donate 100 pounds of its new Pedigree Dry Food For Dogs to canine handlers who are members of the National Association for Search and Rescue (NASAR) Dogs. The new dog food features Pedigree Healthy Nuggets, kibbles with a crispy shell and soft, tasty center, and the Advance Antitoxidant Recipe to help dogs live a long, healthy life. That means that if Schrader completes the 312-lap race in its entirety, NASAR's canine handlers would receive 50,000 pounds of dog food. Law enforcement agencies using search and rescue dogs will be able to pick up the donated Pedigree dog food at designated Petsmart locations around the country. Schrader has the most career wins of any driver at Phoenix International Raceway with 12 trips to Victory Lane. As part of the promotion, the #36 Pedigree Brand Racing Pontiac will also have a new look this weekend in Phoenix. The car will feature Healthy Nuggets - a new addition to the famous Pedigree Dry Food For Dogs recipe. The new recipe delivers both great taste and advanced nutrition to help your dog live a long, healthy life. The new car will be unveiled by Schrader at the Petsmart store located at 7290 West Bell Road in Glendale, Arizona, on Wednesday, November 6th at 7:00pm. Lt. Mike Tuttle, President of NASAR, and a team of search and rescue dogs that assisted with the World Trade Center recovery efforts, will also be on hand.(IMG Motorsports-Charlotte PR)(11-5-2002)

  • Hooper in the #90 at Phoenix: Once again, Lance Hooper will endeavor to compete in two top series NASCAR events, the CTS and Cup races, this weekend at Phoenix. This won't be the first time Hooper has attempted a double duty weekend. At Dover this June, he ran in the CTS race and the BGN MBNA 200, coming from the back of the field to finish 23rd. Hooper belongs to a rather elite group of only seven drivers, including Kenny Schrader and Tony Stewart, who have raced in all three of NASCAR's top series this year. Ingles Market continues their associate sponsorship of Hooper for both the Cup race and the CTS. Their sponsorship of Hooper extends back through five years for ARCA, CTS, BGN, and WC races. This year, Ingles co-sponsored Hooper's truck, BGN Dover ride, and Bristol WC August run. "We are really grateful for Ingles Market's loyalty to us through the last five years," states Hooper." Not only have they been a great associate sponsor, they have provided the food for our team for many races." Hooper will be trying to make the field for Phoenix in the # 90 Ford (not the #47 as listed on the entry list), a partnership between Junie Donlavey and Roger Smith, from Naples FL. Hooper drove Smith/Dovlavey's car in August for the Cup Bristol race. Within hundreds of a second to qualify on time, Hooper took a provisional and not only improved his start by 12 positions, but loaded an almost unscathed car at the end of the night, despite the usual Bristol melee.(Lance Hooper Racing PR), NOTE: the #90 team is out of provisionals and will need to make the field on speed)(11-5-2002)

  • Magic Number is 11th not 8th since penalty: #20-Tony Stewart can clinch the Winston Cup Drivers Championship buy finishing 11th or better in each of the last two races and no one can catch him, needs to average 129 points a race the last two races, 11th is worth 130. The most #6-Mark Martin can get is 4807 (4437 + 370 [185x2]), so 4807 - 4549 = 258, 258/2 = 129. 11th is worth 130 points, or a 12th (worth 127) and lead a lap for 5 points will clinch it for Stewart.(11-3/4-2002)
    AND Only the top seven drivers in the points race still have a mathematical chance of winning this year's title. Any driver more than 151 points out of the lead after the race in Phoenix this coming weekend will be eliminated from the championship race. After Sunday's race, only Mark Martin is within 151 points of Stewart.(as long as they start the last race...of course)(11-4-2002)

  • No Longer the tighest: With 248 points separating first through fifth in this year's title race, this is no longer the tightest points race in NASCAR history. In 1992, 113 points separated the top five with two races remaining. The late Alan Kulwicki won that title by 10 points over Bill Elliott.(News and Observer)(11-4-2002)

  • Hornaday in the #83 at Phoenix: Ron Hornaday will pilot the #83 RacingUSA.com Chevy fielded by FitzBradshaw Racing in the Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway. Driver Kerry Earnhardt was originally slated to drive the car, but has chosen to put his Winston Cup attempts on hold for the remainder of the year, opting to focus on the rest of his Rookie season in the NASCAR Busch Series. Earnhardt's attempt to drive the #83 RacingUSA.com Chevy in the EA Sports 500 at Talladega Superspeedway was interrupted by inclement weather that forced drivers to start the race by owner points. Talladega was FitzBradshaw's first attempt in the Winston Cup Series and no owner points had been accumulated. While Hornaday will drive the #83 RacingUSA.com Chevy at Phoenix International Raceway, Earnhardt will drive the car next year in the Winston Open at Lowe's Motor Speedway.(FitzBradshaw Racing PR)(11-2-2002)

  • Phoenix Testing and Fittapaldi to run #44 next week UPDATE: Out West #24-Jeff Gordon Was Practicing at Phoenix along with #10-Johnny Benson, #49-Derrike Cope, and CART driver Christian Fittapaldi, Who is going to attempt to qualify the Petty Enterprises #44 Georgia Pacific Dodge there next week.(PRN's Garagepass Radio Show)(10-29-2002)
    UPDATE - Teams Complete First Day of Testing at PIR: Four Cup Series teams and one BGN team rolled into Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) on Tuesday for the first of a two-day test session. #24-Jeff Gordon, #10-Johnny Benson, #44-Christian Fittipaldi, #49-Derrick Cope and [BGN] #97-PJ Jones all took to the one-mile oval in preparation for the NASCAR Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Pennzoil Weekend, November 7-10. Gordon turned the fastest time of the day with a speed of 130.910mph, followed by #49-Cope at 129.032. Both #10-Benson and #44-Fittipaldi tested in race trim and had best speeds of 128.571. Fittipaldi will attempt to qualify the car for the November 10th Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Pennzoil. Meanwhile, PJ Jones was the lone Busch Series competitor testing at PIR today in the new #97 Tuttle Motorsports entry. Jones lapped the track in 125.000mph. Testing for all teams will conclude tomorrow.(PIR PR)(10-30-2002)

  • Musgrave to run Phoenix and Homestead in the #07: Sirius Satellite Radio announced that it will continue its partnership with Kenwood USA Corporation and field a second NASCAR Winston Cup team at three additional races this season - Martinsville, Phoenix and Homestead-Miami. "We're pleased to be continue our partnership with Kenwood in this endeavor," said Joseph P. Clayton, President and CEO of Sirius. "Kenwood is a leader in their industry and one of our key hardware partners. Sponsoring a second NASCAR team with Kenwood is a perfect fit for Sirius as we continue to bring our 100 percent commercial free music and outstanding entertainment programming to race fans and consumers across the country." Joining Sirius teammate Casey Atwood, driver of the #7 Sirius Satellite Radio Dodge, CTS driver Ted Musgrave once again will pilot the #07 Kenwood/Sirius Dodge. Earlier this year, Musgrave competed at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where he finished 21st in the Brickyard 400, and Darlington Raceway, where he finished 27th in the Mountain Dew Southern 500. During the final two stops of the season, Musgrave will pull double duty, competing in both the NASCAR Winston Cup and Craftsman Truck Series events.(Golin/Harris International PR)(10-18-2002)

  • Cope's team to attempt Phoenix with Jeff Jefferson: Quest Motor Racing owners Derrick Cope and Warren Johnson, have announced that Jeff Jefferson will drive the #37 Xtreme Motorsports Marketing Pontiac in the November 10 NASCAR Winston Cup event at Phoenix International Raceway, located in Avondale, Arizona. Jefferson, a native of Naches, WA, recently completed the Raybestos Brakes Northwest Series, NASCAR Touring season with four Bud Pole Awards and two victories. He also wrapped up a top-20 points finish in the NASCAR Winston West series, and has one career victory on the prestigious touring division. Xtreme Motorsports Marketing is based in Victorville, CA, and specializes in motorsports marketing from Winston Cup to NASCAR Weekly Racing Series, presented by Dodge competitors. "I'm very excited about this wonderful opportunity to drive for Derrick and Warren," Jefferson said. "It's a dream come true and I will work very hard for the #37 Xtreme Motorsports Marketing Pontiac team." Jefferson picked up his first Winston West victory in July of 2000 at the final asphalt-racing event for the historic Portland (Ore.) Speedway. This season, after competing at California Speedway in a Winston West machine, Jefferson boarded a plane and flew to West Richland, Wash. where he captured his first career Raybestos Brakes Northwest Series, NASCAR Touring victory. The 30-year old driver will be making his first start on the NASCAR Winston Cup series but not his first start on the one-mile paved oval in Avondale, Arizona. Jefferson is a past qualifying record holder behind the wheel of a Winston West machine at the famed speedplant.(southwesternstockcar.com)(10-19-2002)

  • See the 2002 Team Chart which has links to past news for each team and info on each team. And see my 2003 Team Chart


PAINT SCHEME NEWS

  • DeWalt News - 2003 Scheme, flames return at Phoenix, and winners: The 2003 DeWalt Power Tools Ford Taurus paint scheme will be unveiled at DeWalt's Rolling Thunder on Saturday, November 9th at 11:45am. AND The 16 regional winners have driven their five screws in record time and will vie for a chance to win the Million Dollar Challenge during the pre-race ceremonies at Phoenix International Raceway on November 10th. The regional winners are as follows:. Mike Fischer from Huntley, IL 8.19 seconds; Phillip Elliot from Glen Aubrey, NY 9.38 seconds; Jon Smith from Delaware, OH 9.94 seconds; Joe Fodera from Sommerville, MA. 10.23 seconds; John Seymour from Charlotte, NC 10.43 seconds; Ben Pece from Lyndhurst, OH 10.46 seconds; Darrell Fink from Citrus Heights, CA 10.71 seconds; Scott Brockbank from Orem, UT 10.86 seconds; Bill South from Litchfield Park, AZ 10.97 seconds; Mike Rennie from Kirkland, WA 11.10 seconds; James McAnally from Lake Mary, FL 11.24 seconds; Eric Anderson from Garland, TX 11.39 seconds; Darren Johnson from Pembroke Pines, FL 11.69 seconds; Kane Powell from Panora, IA 12.07 seconds; Dale Howington from Buford, GA 12.12 seconds; Ben Beachy from Mt. Joy, PA 12.56 seconds.
    AND The #17 Ford will sport the DeWalt Million Dollar Challenge Flame paint scheme this weekend at Phoenix to commemorate the DeWalt Million Dollar Challenge Finals taking place throughout the weekend.(DeWalt PR)(11-6-2002)

  • #97 Scheme at Phoenix: Kurt Busch will compete in the #97 Stain Shield Ford at Phoenix International Raceway on Sunday, November 10. Stain Shield is Rubbbermaid's new line of very affordable food containers, which resists staining from tomato-based products.(Roush Racing Fan Newsletter)(10-31-2002)

  • Wallace back to black? hearing #2-Rusty Wallace will run a MGD (Miller Geniune Draft) black and gold scheme at either Martinsville or Atlanta (or both) and......it may be a preview to the return of the black and gold scheme for 2003.(6-27-2002)
    UPDATE: Wallace will run the black scheme at Lowe's & Phoenix.(9-28-2002)

  • More Paint Scheme news can be found on Paint Schemes Gallery, choose current news


SOME NOTES and NEWS

  • Provisonals Rules changed a bit: NASCAR Officials announced this week that teams in the Cup and BGN will not be charged for using a provisional starting position if the entry field for an event is equal to or less than the number of starting positions provided by the official entry blank.[such as 43 at a Cup race]. A team is granted a maximum season allotment of eight provisionals [charged provisional, if not in the top 25 in Owners Points] and under this amendment, provisionals assigned to fill starting positions 37-43 will not count against this allotment. Prior to this amendment, teams were charged for a provisional regardless of the number of entries at an event.(NASCAR.com). For more info on provisionals, see my Provisionals Status page.(3-21-2002)

  • New Pit Road Rules: NASCAR will change its policies for speeding violations on pit road following confusion over an infraction for which eventual race-winner Sterling Marlin was never penalized a week ago at Las Vegas. NASCAR president Mike Helton announced the changes Sunday morning at the drivers’ meeting prior to the MBNA 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The new rules go into effect next weekend at Darlington Raceway. The key change is that, under green-flag conditions, the penalty for speeding on the way onto pit road will now be the same as the penalty for speeding off the pit lane. The new penalty will be what NASCAR is calling a “pass through,” meaning the offending car will have to come off the track and travel the length of pit road at its speed limit without stopping. Under the old rule, a car speeding on the way onto pit road during a green-flag stop was held for 15 seconds in its pit stall. A car speeding off pit road was brought back to its pit box for a stop-and-go penalty. During last week’s UAW 400 at Las Vegas, NASCAR officials said Marlin was speeding as he came to his pit stall after being spun out in Turn 4. NASCAR’s race control officials called for the 15-second penalty, but that message was not heard by the official working in Marlin’s pit stall. Marlin left without serving a penalty and NASCAR decided not to enforce any further sanction, saying that bringing Marlin back to pit road would be too severe of a penalty. Since the usual penalty for speeding on the exit to pit lane was to bring a car back in for a stop-and-go, that raised the question of why the sanction for speeding on the way out should be more severe for speeding on the way in. The rule change announced Sunday addresses that issue. Helton admitted Sunday that not giving Marlin a penalty last week might not have been the right decision. Helton said the change was made to avoid the kind of confusion and miscommunication that happened at Las Vegas. Under the rule that goes into effect next week, a driver speeding on the way in and on the way out on the same pit stop will be brought back in for a stop-and-go penalty. A driver who exceeds the pit road speed limit as he serves the “pass through” penalty for speeding will also get a stop-and-go. The penalty for speeding in or out of a pit stop made under yellow-flag conditions will not change - the offending car will be sent to the end of the longest line of traffic for the restart.()(3-10-2002)
    UPDATE: plus a nice breakdown at RacingOne:
    The New Pit Road Rules

    Speeding Entering Pit Road
    Current Penalty: 15 seconds
    New Penalty: Pass through at correct pit road speed.

    Speeding Exiting Pit Road
    Current Penalty: Stop and Go
    New Penalty: Pass through at correct pit road speed

    Entering and Exiting Pit Road
    Current Penalty: 15 seconds after stop; brought back for stop and go
    New Penalty: Stop and Go

    Speeding on Pass Through
    New Penalty: Stop and Go
    Multiple Violations: NASCAR’s Discretion.(RacingOne)(3-11-2002)

  • Spoilers - not at Daytona/Talladega: the spoilers on the Winston Cup cars are as follows:
    Chevy: 6 1/4" height, 55" wide
    Dodge: 6 1/4" height, 55" wide
    Ford: 6 1/4" height, 55" wide
    Pontiac: 6 7/8" height, 57" wide
    70 degrees at intermediate tracks.(2-22-2002)


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