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THE RACE: Checker Auto Parts 500

Winston Cup Race #34 of 36 for the 2003 Winston Cup season
Updated: often, leading up to the race

  • Race: Sunday, November 2, 2003 in Avondale/Phoenix, AZ

  • 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:

  • TV: NBC - 3:30pm/et

  • Pre-Race Show: NBC - 3:00pm/et - hosted by Bill Weber

  • Scheduled Race Re-Air: on Speed Channel
    a one-hour recap [called Fast Forward] of the race scheduled for:
    Wednesday, November 5th at 7:00pm/et and again on November 6th at 1:00am/et;
    and a full three-hour race show will re-air at 3:00pm/et on Thursday, November 6th

  • Pay Per View/NASCAR In Demand:

  • Announcers: Allen Bestwick, Benny Parsons, Wally Dallenbach

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

  • War Wagon: Bill Weber and many guests

  • NASCAR on TV

  • Purse/Race Awards: $4,436,424 (was $3,881,518 in 2002)

  • Entry List Links: at:

  • 2002 Race Winner: Matt Kenseth, 113.857mph, started 28th

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

  • Most Wins - Active Driver: Jeff Burton, 2

  • Most Wins - All Time: Jeff Burton and Davey Allison, 2

  • Most Poles - Active Driver/All-Time: Rusty Wallace, 3

  • Slowest Race Record: Al Kulwicki, 1988, 90.457mph

  • Oldest Winner: Rusty Wallace, 42 years, 2 months, 11 days, 10/25/98

  • Youngest Winner: Tony Stewart, 28 years, 5 months, 18 days, 11/7/99

  • Most Cautions: 10 - 11/1991 and 11/2003

  • Most Caution Laps: 66, 11/2/2003

  • Fewest Cautions: 2 - 11/7/1999

  • Fewest Caution Laps: 10, 11/7/1999

  • Most on the Lead Lap: 29 - 11/2/2003

  • Fewest on the Lead Lap: 3 - 10/30/1994

  • Most Running at the Finish: 41 - twice, 11/7/99

  • Fewest Running at the Finish: 27 - 11/5/89

  • Worst Starting Spot to Win: Ricky Rudd, 1995, started 29th

  • Most Lead Changes: 23 - 11/5/2000

  • Fewest Lead Changes: 1 - 11/4/1990

  • Most Laps Led by a Race Winner: 262 - Dale Earnhardt, 11/4/1990

  • Fewest Laps Led by a Race Winner: 30 - Davey Allison 11/1/1992


  • Practice: Friday, October 31, 12:20 - 2:20pm/et; and Saturday, November 1st, 11:30am - 12:15pm/et

  • Happy Hour Practice: Saturday, November 1st, 1:10 - 1:55pm/et on TV-TNT tape delay at 2:00pm/et.


  • Qualifying Draw: Friday, October 31st, 11:20am/et

  • Qualifying Order: and/or

  • First Round Qualifying: 2 laps for positions 1-36, Friday, October 31st at 4:05pm/et, TV-Speed Channel live, re-air at 9:00pm/et and on Nov 1st at 1:00am/et.
    And live via MRN radio/internet (link below) and XM Satellite - NASCAR Radio (Subscription Required).

  • Qualifying Results: on my Checker Auto Parts 500 Qualifying Page

  • NASCAR Online will have live lap-by-lap coverage of 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 Qualifying Record: Rusty Wallace, Nov 2000, 134.178mph

  • Last Year's Pole Sitter: Ryan Newman, 132.655, finished 18th

    Track Specs:
    Track/Race Length: 1.0 mile oval, 312 laps, 312 miles/500km
    Pit Road Speed: 45mph
    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:

  • Last Year: see my 2002 Phoenix International Raceway Race Info page.


    Phoenix Race and Pole Winners


    NASCAR Winston Cup Series - Race No. 34 - Checker Auto Parts 500
    NASCAR Busch Series - Race No. 32 - Bashas' 200
    NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series - Race No. 24 - Chevy Silverado 150
    Phoenix International Raceway (1-mile oval) - Avondale, Ariz.
    Fast Facts for October 29-November 2, 2003

    Tire: Goodyear Eagle Intermediate Radials
    Number of Tires Required:
    Winston Cup: Left - 1,200, Right - 1,200;
    Busch Series: Left - 600, Right - 600;
    Truck Series: Left - 325, Right - 325

    Tire Codes: Left - D-6360; Right - D-6362

    Tire Circumference: Left - 87.3 in.; Right - 88.6 in.

    Technical Inspection Inflation:
    Left Front - 20 psi; Left Rear - 20 psi;
    Right Front - 30 psi; Right Rear - 30 psi

    Minimum Recommended Inflation:
    Left Front - 14 psi; Left Rear - 14 psi; Right
    Front - 26 psi; Right Rear - 23 psi

    Estimated Pit Window: Every 90-100 laps, based on fuel mileage.

    Notes: This is the same combination of left- and right-side tires Goodyear brought to Phoenix last season . . . other tracks where teams will run these tires in 2003 are New Hampshire and Richmond . . . all three NASCAR series -- Winston Cup, Busch and Craftsman Truck -- will compete on the same tires this weekend . . . as on all NASCAR ovals less than one mile in length, teams will not run inner liners in their tires at Phoenix.

    Goodyear Quote -- Mark Keto, Lead Engineer, Stock Car Tire Development: "This particular tire combination, which is Goodyear's recommendation at Phoenix, Loudon and Richmond, is more of a short- or intermediate-track set-up in our tire line. This is the fifth and final time Winston Cup teams will race on these tires in 2003, so they should have a good amount of notes to work from."(Goodyear PR)(10-30-2003)


  • The NASCAR Winston Cup Leader Bonus is $340,000 at Phoenix International 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 the driver 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 finishers in the drivers point standings(10-27-2003)

  • 65 Races since... Leader bonus has been won. It's been 65 races since the NASCAR Winston Cup points leader won a race and took home the NASCAR Winston Cup Leader Bonus. #17-Matt Kenseth leads the series points and has the only shot at claiming the bonus at PIR. Should a driver win the bonus, it would bypass the largest payout in the history of the program. #18-Bobby Labonte collected the biggest paycheck, $190,000, with a win at Indianapolis in 2000. The $10,000 bonus is available following every NASCAR Winston Cup Series race. If the point leader does not win the race, the bonus rolls over to the next week. Sterling Marlin last won the award, $20,000 at Darlington on March 17, 2002, it was NOT won by #15-Waltrip at Daytona, it rolled over to Rockingham.(10-27-2003)

  • MBNA Mid-Race Leader Bonus: is $15,000 at Phoenix International Raceway. The MBNA Mid-Race Leader Award is $10,000 to the Winston Cup driver who leads the race at midway. If the driver wins the race they receive a $5,000 bonus. If the MBNA Mid-Race Leader fails to win the race the $5,000 bonus rolls into the next week (Tony Stewart last won the bonus, $75,000 + $10,000 at Charlotte on October 11, 2003). No word on if a driver gets the award if the halfway is under yellow at the time or if the award is given out if the leader is not participating in the program and if it would go to the next place car at the time. The 2003 MBNA Mid-Race Leader Winners:
    Daytona: Michael Waltrip, $15,000* (plus $5,000 bonus)
    Rockingham: Rusty Wallace, $10,000
    Las Vegas: Dale Earnhardt Jr., $10,000
    Atlanta: Bobby Labonte, $25,000* (plus $15,000 bous)
    Darlington: Mark Martin, $10,000
    Bristol: Jimmy Spencer, $10,000
    Texas: Matt Kenseth, $10,000
    Talladega: Matt Kenseth, $10,000 (Jimmie Johnson led at halfway, assume the team does not participate in the program)
    Martinsville: Jeff Gordon, $35,000* (plus $25,000 bonus)
    California: Jamie McMurray, $10,000
    Richmond: Bobby Labonte, $10,000
    Charlotte: Bobby Labonte, $10,000
    Dover: Ryan Newman, $30,000 (which included the $20,000 bonus)*
    Pocono: Elliott Sadler, $10,000
    Michigan: Sterling Marlin, $10,000
    Sonoma: Robby Gordon, $25,000 (which included the $15,000 bonus)*
    Daytona: Dale Earnhardt Jr., $10,000
    Chicago: Jeff Gordon, $10,000
    New Hampshire: Kevin Harvick, $10,000
    Pocono: Tony Stewart, $10,000
    Indy: Tony Stewart, $10,000
    Watkins Glen: Dale Earnhardt Jr., $10,000
    Michigan: Jimmie Johnson, $10,000
    Bristol: Sterling Marlin, $10,000
    Darlington: Ryan Newman, $10,000
    Richmond: Dale Earnhardt Jr., $10,000
    New Hampshire: Dale Earnhardt Jr., $10,000
    Dover: Tony Stewart, $10,000
    Talladega: Jeff Gordon, $10,000
    Kansas: Bill Elliott, $10,000
    Charlotte: Tony Stewart, $85,000 (which included the $75,000 bonus)*
    Martinsville: Dale Earnhardt Jr., $10,000
    Atlanta: Tony Stewart, $10,000
    (* won race and bonus)(10-27-2003)


Radio Coverage:
Motor Racing Network (MRN) and

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

Scanner Frequencies:
are linked on my Scanner Freq/Equipment Links Page
Sponsored by Racing Electronics

Local Newspaper and other Sites that cover the Phoenix/Avondale, AZ Area:
Arizona Family
Arizona Republic
Arizona Silver Belt
Easy Valley Tribune

Weather Forecast:
The Weather Channel
Accuweather - Local Radar
Intellicast - NASCAR weather
National Weather Service
Weather Underground

ARS Racing Outlet - Phoenix Review
Laid Back Racing (lots of info)

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

TV Coverage/Info/News Pages:
Race Fan TV


news and links

    this is of course.....unofficial

  • Earnhardt Jr wins at Phoenix: #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the Checker Auto Parts 500 Saturday at Phoenix International Raceway, his first victory an a non-restrictor plate track since Dover in September 2001. #48-Jimmie Johnson finished 2nd, followed by #12-Ryan Newman [the pole sitter], #97-Kurt Busch [who led the most laps] and #15-Michael Waltrip. The victory also helped Earnhardt Jr. solidify his hold on second in the Winston Cup standings behind #17-Matt Kenseth, who had his strongest run since a fourth at Bristol in August. Kenseth, who started 37th on Sunday, finished sixth and now leads Earnhardt Jr. by 228 points with just two races left in the season. Kenseth needs to finish only 30th or higher in the final two races to clinch the championship [or leaves Rockingham with a 186 points lead]. There were ten caution flags, tying the Phoenix Cup race record set in 1991, the 66 caution laps are a new record.(full story at

  • The Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway IS OVER:
    The UNOFFICIAL Top Ten (start pos in parens), lap leaders, cars out, cautions and some notes
    after 312 of 312 laps:

    #8-Earnhardt Jr. (11)(87 laps led)
    #48-Johnson (3)(84 laps led)
    #12-Newman (1)(41 laps led)
    #97-Busch (7) (98 laps led)
    #15-Waltrip (17)

    #17-Kenseth (37)
    #24-Gordon (4)
    #99-Burton (27)
    #22-Wimmer (28)
    #6-Martin (12)

    Cars on the lead lap: 29 (of 43 starters)

    Off track/out of race (8): #19-Mayfield (out-engine); #41-Mears (out-engine); #7-Spencer (out-accident); #0-Burton (out-accident); #30-Park (out-accident); #43-Green (out-engine); #45-Petty (out-engine); #32-Craven (out-accident);

    Laps Leaders Unofficial (6 with 10 lead changes): #12-Newman; #48-Johnson; #32-Craven; #97-Busch; #8-Earnhardt Jr.; #4-Lepage;

    Cautions: 10 for 66 laps

    Caution 10 - Laps 300-303: #09-Wallace got together with #20-Stewart and spun around. Breaks the record for the most cautions and caution laps for a Cup race at Phoenix.
    Caution 9 - Laps 282 - 288: #45-Petty lost an engine.
    Caution 8 - Laps 265 - 275: #43-Green lost and engine and got oil on the track.
    Caution 7 - Laps 229 - 237: #2-Wallace got into the rear of #20-Stewart, then #22-Wimmer got into the #2, the #20 and #2 spinning around, then #18-Labonte ran into the #2 and #29-Harvick ran into the #18. All but Labonte drove off, the #29 is in the garage.
    Caution 6 - Laps 209 - 217: #30-Park spun around when he got loose and hit the wall hard nose first, walked away ok.
    Caution 5 - Laps 186 - 190: #99-Burton cut down a rear left tire and slowed on the lap and debris.
    Caution 4 - Laps 169 - 178: #7-Spencer lost an engine got into the oil and backed hard into the outside wall, #0-Burton spun around and #4-Lepage smacked the wall and drove off.
    Caution 3 - Laps 140 - 145: #32-Craven got loose and crashed into the turn 4 wall, drove off after a few moments. #38-Sadler and #09-Wallace made contact trying to avoid Craven, Sadler spun and drove on.
    Caution 2 - Laps 119 - 124: #41-Mears slowed on the track, possible engine problems.
    Caution 1 - Laps 34 - 42: #19-Mayfield got off course after losing an engine.

    Who got a lap back on each caution at Phoenix - The Lucky Dog Pack?: (and their finish)
    Caution 10: #09-Wallace, 26th
    Caution 9: #14-Foyt, 28th
    Caution 8: #23-Wallace, 25th
    Caution 7: #49-Schrader, 27th
    Caution 6: #45-Petty, 35th
    Caution 5: #16-Biffle, 15th
    Caution 4: #54-Bodine, 22nd
    Caution 3: #74-Raines, 19th
    Caution 2: #4-Lepage, 23rd
    Caution 1: #14-Foyt, 28th

  • RACE NOTES: (as noted on TV or MRN Radio)
    ----- #32-Craven came back out on lap 215 after the team repaired the car.
    ----- on lap 200 #99-Burton and #31-Gordon got into each other and went up the track but were both able to drive on ok.
    ----- #8-Earnhardt Jr. has a tire rub on the left front and smokes off the corners as of lap 195.
    ----- only one driver in the top 10, #29-Harvick came in to pit during the 3rd caution.
    ----- on lap 119, #7-Spencer pitted as his car acted like it was out of fuel, crew chief Tommy Baldwin Jr. said that was impossible, Spencer came in and they only fit 1 1/2 cans of fuel into the tank, so the car has a fuel pickup problem of some kind, Spencer's stop came just before the 2nd caution and lost a ton of positions and was on the tail end of the lead lap, just infront of the leaders on the caution restart. So Spencer and Busch got to duke it out a bit as Busch came out leading the race.
    ----- it was reported on lap 94 that the #12 car is running hot as there is paper on the grill.
    ----- on around lap 64, #16-Biffle slapped the wall but recovered and kept his position at the time [14th]
    ----- all came into pit during the first caution.

  • Where did the top 10 starters finish at Phoenix?
    #12-Newman, finished 3rd
    #25-Vickers, 13th
    #48-Johnson, 2nd
    #24-Gordon, 7th
    #2-Wallace, 33rd

    #20-Stewart, 18th
    #97-Busch, 4th
    #77-Blaney, 24th
    #41-Mears, 42nd
    #01-Nemechek, 31st

  • TOP FIVE [unofficial] DRIVERS POINTS after Phoenix:
    #17-Matt Kenseth, 4828
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr., 4600, -228
    #48-Jimmie Johnson, 4587, -241
    #24-Jeff Gordon, 4528, -300
    #12-Ryan Newman, 4499, -329
    #29-Kevin Harvick, 4477, -351
    See full standings at Jayski's Drivers/Owners Points after Phoenix.(11-2-2003)

    Race Results at
    Jayski's Phoenix Race Results Page

  • - Rumblings - Phoenix: #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr powered past Jimmie Johnson on lap 252 and led the final 51 circuits to capture today's Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Havoline at Phoenix International Raceway. It was the second win for Little E this season (he captured Talladega in April), the 9th of his career (5 plates and 4 non-plates), and the 15th for DEI. Jr. is now tied for 47th on the all-time win list....and to say that crew looked happy in Victory Lane would be an understatement!
    #97-Kurt Busch (4th) had his best finish and first Top-5 since he won at Bristol in August.
    #17-Matt Kenseth (6th....and more about him later) had his best finish since he was 4th at Bristol in August.
    #99-Jeff Burton (8th) had his best finish since he was 4th at Richmond in September.
    #22-Scott Wimmer (9th) had his career-best finish today. His previous best was a 17th at Talladega in October of 2002. He also gives us 41 drivers to score a Top-10 this season....last year's number was 42.
    #6-Mark Martin (10th) had his best finish and first Top-10 since he was 10th at Watkins Glen in August.
    #40-Sterling Marlin (11th) had his best finish since he was 10th at Pocono in July.
    #25-Brian Vickers (13th) had his career-best (albeit short) finish today. His previous best was 33rd at Lowe's Motor Speedway last month.
    #14-Larry Foyt (28th) tied his career-best finish today. He also finished 28th at Dover in June.
    Jeff Gordon has 7 Top-10's in a row.
    Jimmie Johnson has 5 Top-10's in a row.
    Ryan Newman has 8 Top-10's in the last 9 races.
    Dale Earnhardt Jr has 5 Top-10's in the last 6 races.
    This Week's Elevator....UP: Operator of the Week (for the second week in a row) is Matt Kenseth (+31), followed by Tony Raines (+22). DOWN: The Big Dropper was Casey Mears (-33), followed by Rusty Wallace (-28), Jeremy Mayfield (-27), Joe Nemechek (-21), and Ward Burton (-21). Kenseth has now clinched no worse than a tie in the Op of the year category....this was #5.
    We've had seven drivers score 100 or more bonus points this season. I don't know if thats a record or not, but it's certainly waaaay above average. It's the most we've had that I can find in my stats going back to 1996. We had six drivers hit the century mark in 1999 and five in 2000. Other than those years, the norm is four.
    Matt Kenseth has done everything but clinch his first Championship. His lead is now 228 (he lost 30 points off his margin), and his Magic Number vs Dale Earnhardt Jr is 30th. If Matt finishes 7th or better next week, he clinches (no matter what Jr does).
    Kevin Harvick's problems the last two races have certainly been costly. He was 2nd coming out of Martinsville but he's fallen to 6th over the last two weeks.
    Kurt Busch (11th to 9th) and Michael Waltrip (14th to 12th) made multi-position moves upward this week. The aforementioned Mr. Harvick (3rd to 6th) dropped three spots.(StockCarFans.Com Winstoncup Newsletter)(11-2-2003)

  • Jayski's Phoenix Qualifying / Starting Grid page

  • Phoenix Qualifying Results/Race Lineup at:
    MotorsportsOne (11-2-2003)

  • Happy Hour practice is over for Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, it started a bit late due to RAIN [in the desert? only if NASCAR is there does it rain]
    The fastest were #99-Jeff Burton at 130.733mph and #16-Greg Biffle at 130.714 [Vickers is 3rd - this kid is for real so far], the rest of the top 10 were #'s: 6,1,48,17,42,22,18. Slowest were #32-Ricky Craven [been slow all weekend] at 126.966 and #14-Larry Foyt [nice qualifying run by the way] at 127.357.('s live coverage)
    See speeds at - Happy Hour practice.(11-1-2003)

  • To the Back? at Phoenix, none I know of.(11-1-2003)

  • Didja Know? that #24-Jeff Gordon has won on every race track [19 current and at defunct North Wilkesboro] on the Cup circuit with the exception of Phoenix, Texas, Chicagoland and Homestead. Gordon's most wins at a track is six at Darlington.(11-1-2003)

  • Saturday Practice is over for the Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway. So far the fastest were: #24-Jeff Gordon at 130.724mph, followed by #12-Ryan Newman at 130.567, rest of the top 10: #'s 6,16,25,77,29,9,41,1. Slowest were #4-Kevin Lepage at 126.605 and #14-Larry Foyt at 127.235.('s live coverage)
    For speeds see - practice 2.(11-1-2003)

  • Newman wins pole at Phoenix: nope, no track record as expected, but #12-Ryan Newman won the Budweiser Pole for the Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway with a speed of 133.675mph, his 10th of the season and 17th of his career. #25-Brian Vickers will start on the outside pole with a speed of 133.640mph. The rest of the top five are #48-Johnson, #24-Gordon and #2-Wallace. Points leader #17-Matt Kenseth had to use a provisional and will start 37th. Missing the race was #37-Derrike Cope and #02-Brandon Ash. For qualifying results, practices speeds vs. qualifying speeds, who used provisionals, pole progression, where the rookies start, other starting lineup links and other stuff, see my Jayski's Phoenix Qualifying/Grid Page.
    Re-air: Speed Channel will re-air Cup qualifying at 9:00pm/et tonight [after Trackside] and on Nov 1st at 1:00am/et. Yes, the coverage was cut off with six drivers to go [to get the Truck Series race in live], complaints can be directed to Speed Channel.(10-31-2003)

  • So what is the record for poles in one season?
    Most Poles in one season [modern era 1972-present]: Cale Yarborough, 14 [in 31 races] during the 1980 season
    Most Poles in one season [All Time}: Bobby Issac, 1969, 20 poles in 50 races
    Tim Flock had 20 [in 39 races] during the 1955 season
    Richard Petty had 19 [in 48 races] during the 1967 season.( Encyclopedia)(11-1-2003)

  • - Ramblings Phoenix: Ryan Newman picked up Bud Pole #10 for the season today at Phoenix International Raceway for Sunday's Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Havoline. It's the third pole in the last four events for Newman, and the 17th of his Winston Cup career. He's now hitting a lusty .218 for the top-spot. Remember last week when we said that #25-Brian Vickers was setting the bar pretty high? Well, he raised it today. In only his 3rd career Cup start, he'll start from the outside front row on Sunday, besting that 4th place start he had at Atlanta last week. A strong qualifying day for the Hendrick Motorsports Chevies....2nd, 3rd, and 4th...bookended by those Penske Dodges.
    #77-Dave Blaney (8th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 8th at Lowe's Motor Speedway in May. #6-Mark Martin (12th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 3rd at Richmond in September. STREAKIN....Jeff Gordon has 8 Top-10 starts in the last 9 races. Jimmie Johnson has 7 Top-10 starts in the last 8 races. The Trouble Train contained only two cars today. Derrike Cope (for the 8th time this season) gets the looong ride home, while for Brandon Ash it's a little shorter but none too sweet. Ash has attempted three West Coast events this season (Las Vegas, Infineon, and today) with no success.
    Provisionals went to: Matt Kenseth, Ricky Craven, Dale Jarrett, Steve Park, Tony Raines, Jeff Green, and Kevin Lepage. This marks the 12th freebie the #43 has had to take this season.
    Seems like every driver loves the re-design of this racetrack....lets see if they're still as happy come Sunday.(StockCarFans.Com Winstoncup Newsletter)(10-31-2003)

  • Friday Pracitce is for the Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway. Fastest were #25-Brian Vickers at 133.919mph and #01-Joe Nemechek at 133.586 followed by the #'s 12,48,20,8,77,0,97,24. Slowest were #02-Brandan Ash at 126.011 and #37-Derrike Cope at 129.264.
    Speeds can be seen at practice 1.(10-31-2003)

  • Qualifying Order is up for the Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, 45 teams/drivers are listed. First driver scheduled out to qualify is #74-Tony Raines, last due out is #77-Dave Blaney. With two teams out of provisionals [#14-Foyt and #49-Schrader] I would guess that provisionals will not be charged, but #14-Foyt will be allotted one after he practices as it is the teams 24th race, see my Provisional Land page for rules, standings and info. See above for qualifying order links.(10-31-2003)

  • Entry List link(s) are up. 46 teams/drivers are listed including #02-Hermie Sadler; #02-Brandan Ash [if both make the race, Sadler gets to use the #02]; #09-Mike Wallace; and #37-Derrike Cope. See above for links.
    Make it 45 as #02-Sadler is no longer on the entry list.(10-29-2003)

  • No Racing to the Caution Rule and Q&A

  • Top 10 Championship Comebacks: see the whole list compiled on my Stats and Stats Links page

  • Best 25 Over Last Six Races from

  • Jayski's - 2003 Winston Cup Race Results Page

  • 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

  • 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


    • DEWALT's Million Dollar Challenge contest at Phoenix: Earn $1,000,000 in 6.5 seconds. That’s what the fastest 14 drill slingers in North America will try to do as they compete November 1-2 in the DEWALT “Million Dollar Challenge” cordless screwdriving contest, sponsored by Chevy Trucks. The challenge is to see who can drive five screws into a piece of wood the quickest with a DEWALT cordless drill. Contestants must start a timer, pick up the drill, drive the screws, and then stop the timer with the drill.
      Contestants include:
      Ben Palmer - Russelville, AR - 7.03 seconds
      Dan Rancourt – Wilton, NH- - 7.19 seconds
      Jaime Mills - Holland, OH - 7.23 seconds
      Eric Howard - Concord, CA - 7.47 seconds
      Mike Rennie - Kirkland, WA - 7.51 seconds
      Kane Powell - Panora, IA - 7.7 seconds
      Mark Martin - Ostrander, OH - 7.7 seconds
      Mike Fischer - Huntley, IL - 7.99 seconds
      Rocky Lane - Loudon, TN - 8.18 seconds
      Tom Holland - Philadelphia, PA - 8.42 seconds
      James McAnally - Longwood, FL - 8.68 seconds
      Sergio Romero - Tucson, AZ - 8.7 seconds
      Alex Mealer - Columbus, OH - 8.9 seconds
      Kevin Brunette – Calgary, Alberta (Canada) - 10.09 seconds
      The 13 Americans and one Canadian will be seeded tournament-style according to their times. Contestants will be eliminated until the last two men clash head-to-head in the final “screw off” November 2. The “King of the Drill” is guaranteed to win $25,000 and a premium Chevy Silverado pick-up truck. To win the $1,000,000 grand prize, the champion must sink five screws under 6.5 seconds during the final round in front of thousands of spectators at the Phoenix International Raceway. It’s not as easy as it sounds. Most of the contestants built their own screwdriving practice stations using plans posted on DEWALT’s web site. Some of the finalists have driven more than 450,000 screws in practice, while a few have even videotaped themselves to see where they can cut time. This is the second year for the national screwdriving challenge. Earlier this year DEWALT staged qualifying contests in more than 100 cities throughout the U.S. and Canada where people tested their prowess driving screws. More than 100,000 people entered. Regional contests were held last month to finalize the top 14 competing in Phoenix. The 2003 DEWALT Million Dollar Challenge is presented by DEWALT Power Tools and Accessories, Chevy Trucks, the Greater Phoenix Convention and Visitors’ Bureau, Bombardier ATV, Richard Petty’s Driving Experience, Carhartt contractor clothing, Greenlee storage boxes, and Adrian Steel commercial van and truck equipment. Visit for contest information.(DeWalt PR)(10-30-2003)

    • Phoenix to accept California Speedway Tix: Phoenix International Raceway has announced that it will be accepting tickets for those individuals who have tickets to the CART race weekend to be held at California Speedway this weekend. The California races have been cancelled due to the wildfires affecting the surrounding area. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the families who have been effected by the horrible fires in Southern California," said PIR president Bryan R. Sperber. "By offering this opportunity, we hope to provide ticket holders to the CART race the opportunity to watch any of four exciting races offered during the Checker Auto Parts 500 weekend. We hope those ticket holders at come to PIR will find being around the track this weekend a small measure of comfort." Those interested in exchanging tickets for any of the four races at PIR this weekend must do so at the Gate 3 Ticket Office the day of the race. Tickets can be exchanged for the Cruise America 125 NASCAR Featherlite Southwest Series race on Thursday, the Chevy Silverado 150 NASCAR Craftsman Truck race on Friday, the Bashas' Supermarkets 200 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, and the Checker Auto Parts 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race on Sunday. This is a ticket for ticket exchange, and the value of the ticket does not matter. "We appreciate this offer from Phoenix International Raceway to our fans at California Speedway," Bill Miller, president of California Speedway said. "While the focus is very much on what is happening with the fires in Southern California and our concern remains with helping those who have been affected by this tragedy, this does provide a great opportunity for our valued guests to take a trip and see a great motorsports show at PIR." A limited numbers of tickets still remain for the four NASCAR races this weekend by calling 602-252-2227, online at, or at the Gate 3 ticket office at PIR.(10-30-2003)

    • Apollo XII Astronaut to be special guest of NASCAR: Dick Gordon, the fourth man to walk in space and command pilot for America's second lunar landing mission will be among the many celebrities at Phoenix International Raceway this weekend for Saturday's NASCAR Busch Series Bashas' Supermarkets 200. Gordon is now a popular keynote speaker who addresses thousands of people each year at colleges, conventions, trade shows and museums. He is also an avid and enthusiastic NASCAR fan, known to have strong and definite opinions on common templates and the practice of NASCAR Winston Cup Series racers competing in the Busch Series. He will appear at various hospitality and industry functions at the track and in the city in support of what's become Gordon's favorite racing series and sanctioning body; he jokingly refers to four-time NASCAR Winston Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon as his "grandson."
      Seattle native Richard Francis Gordon, Jr. earned his wings as a Naval Aviator in 1953 and was a test pilot until 1960. He won the prestigious Bendix Trophy transcontinental air race in 1961 at record speed, and was selected for the astronaut program in 1963.
      His first space flight was the Gemini XI mission in 1966, when he became the fourth man to walk in space and, along with Pete Conrad, the first to fall asleep during a spacewalk. In 1969 Gordon, Conrad and Alan Bean flew the Apollo XII mission that suffered a lighting strike to the Saturn V vehicle 36 ½ seconds into launch, causing a total but temporary failure of all electrical systems. The mission continued, as Conrad and Bean landed and worked on the lunar surface as Gordon piloted the command module in orbit. Gordon's scheduled walk on the moon as commander of Apollo 18 was scrubbed due to budget concerns.
      After retiring from the Navy and NASA in 1972, Gordon became an exective vice president with the NFL New Orleans Saints. Later he was president of a company in the oil well fire containment industry, and then president of a company that provides control room engineering and support services. In 1984 Gordon was a technical advisor and actor in "Space," James A. Michener's acclaimed network television mini-series.(PIR PR)(10-28-2003)

    • Diamondback All-Star now Grand Marshal: Luis Gonzalez, Arizona Diamondbacks All-Star outfielder will serve as Honorary Grand Marshal at the Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Havoiline NASCAR race this November 2nd at Phoenix International Raceway. Gonzalez is a key player on the Checker Auto Parts sports marketing team, serving as a commercial spokesperson for the company. In addition to appearing in print, TV and radio ads for Checker, he is featured in the company's "Bring 'Em Home Safe!" charitable child safety seat program.(

    • PIR Is More Fun After Dark: The new PIR After Dark fan experience festival is revving up to be the ultimate NASCAR bash. PIR After Dark will be held at the track on Friday, October 31 following the Chevy Silverado 150 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race. The Friday night party will feature driver appearances, live entertainment, interactive NASCAR and IRL displays, SPEED Channel's "Trackside Live" TV show and much, much more! The best part is, you'll gain admission to this party of the year with the purchase of your Winston Cup Bud Pole Qualifying/Chevy Silverado 150 race ticket. Tickets after the Chevy Silverado 150 checkered flag are just $5.(

    • Phoenix Still has Limited Tix: Ticket sales have been hot for the Checker Auto Parts 500 NASCAR Weekend at Phoenix International Raceway in two weeks. There are a limited number of very good seats remaining for all four races over the weekend, and they can be purchased by calling the PIR Ticket Office (602) 252-2227, 1-800-PIT-SHOP or via the internet at

    • Phoenix Extends Ticket Office Hours: Phoenix International Raceway has announced expanded ticket office hours in preparation for the annual Oct 30-Nov 2 NASCAR Weekend. Beginning October 4, the track's downtown ticket office at the Arizona Center, 3rd Street and Van Buren, will be open on weekends from 10:00am to 4:00pm on Saturday, and 11:00am to 5:00pm on Sunday. Weekday hours remain from 10:00am to 5:30pm. Telephone ticket hours will also be extended to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, beginning Oct. 6. Expanded ticket office hours will remain in effect through Saturday, Nov. 1, 2003. Season Tickets for Phoenix International Raceway's gala 2004 schedule of events, including 13 days and 15 different races, will go on sale Monday, Nov. 3, to the general public. Tickets for the upcoming NASCAR DoubleHeader and NASCAR Weekend are now available at the track's downtown ticket office at the Arizona Center, 3rd Street and Van Buren; by phone at 602-252-2227, or online at PR)(9-29-2003)

    • Phoenix will add lights....if they get a 2nd Cup race: Phoenix International Raceway is prepared to install lights for a night race in prime time if it is awarded a second Winston Cup event for 2005, PIR president Bryan Sperber said Thursday. PIR expects to make a presentation to NASCAR in September as it presses its case for a second race. Sperber said the competition for another race will be fierce as NASCAR realigns its schedule geographically to put more races in the West. "NASCAR has determined that taking two races out of the Southeast and moving them west of the Mississippi River would benefit the series long term," Sperber said. "We initially talked to NASCAR about a second race in February, and we came away with a very positive feeling from our early discussions." Sperber said a second race would happen in a window between March and May. PIR would keep its October or November date. The Winston Cup race drew an estimated 110,000 to the track in Avondale, about 20 miles southwest of Phoenix, last year. "Our biggest competition for a second race will be Kansas City," Sperber said. "If NASCAR goes with Kansas City, it would be a good decision, because they have great support from everyone in the state. And they have some great sponsors.(Arizona Daily Star)(8-26-2003)

    • PIR's Fan of the Month for June: Dianna Lunsford of Gilbert, AZ, has been selected Phoenix International Raceway Fan of the Month for June. Lunsford, who has been attending races at PIR since 1994, will receive a prize pack consisting of various racing items. Dianna joins William Chapin and John Andrews as the first three winners of this award. Like William and John, Dianna is now eligible for Phoenix International Raceway's ultimate prize, the 2003 PIR Fan of the Year. The PIR Fan of the Year will have the opportunity to be introduced before a packed stadium at the Checker Auto Parts 500 presented by Havoline (Oct. 30 - Nov.2). Anyone interested in being selected PIR Fan of the Month can sign up on the PIR website, full story at the PIR site)(7-18-2003)

    • Phoenix still hunting for a 2nd Cup date: It's already been a busy summer for Phoenix International Raceway President Bryan Sperber, who continues to lobby and pound the pavement for a second NASCAR Winston Cup Series race. Although NASCAR officials chose California Speedway over PIR and Kansas Speedway for a second additional race in 2004, Sperber retains hope PIR will join the list of tracks with two annual stops by the 2005 season. NASCAR isn't through realigning its schedule, which includes adding second races to single-race markets that would benefit the overall health of the sanctioning body, and PIR and Kansas appear to be high on the list to receive a second race. But it's likely only one of the racetracks will receive NASCAR approval for an additional event.(Arizona Republic)(7-18-2003)

    • No 2nd Phoenix Race: Phoenix International Raceway won't receive a highly coveted second NASCAR Winston Cup Series race in 2004. But neither will Kansas Speedway. Both tracks were shut out in their bids to attract second race dates, but not California Speedway. International Speedway Corp., which owns the three racetracks, has scheduled a news conference today at Michigan Speedway to announce it is pulling one of two races from its track in Rockingham, N.C., and shifting it to the California oval. No other race additions or deletions are expected for the 2004 season, but nothing is confirmed until NASCAR releases next year's complete schedule. What is confirmed is Rockingham is losing a race and Fontana, Calif., is gaining one.(Arizona Republic)(6-13-2003)

    • Update on Phoenix Work: Phoenix International Raceway, the design for which resulted in a quirky, misshapen, 1-mile oval four decades ago, is undergoing a makeover intended to alter Turn 2 and a portion of the backside straightaway. Construction recently began to extend the Turn 2 wall outward and create a significantly wider racing surface. Although the dogleg along the back straightaway remains, it won't be so pronounced with the new design, which is intended to rid the "pinching-down effect" now associated with Turn 2. "The new Turn 2 is going to do two things," PIR President Bryan Sperber said. "It's going to make the track a little faster, but more importantly, it's going to create a new passing zone." It's going to do something else, too. It's going to alter a track unlike any other. Although NASCAR officials and some drivers approve of the changes, which could also reduce accidents and increase safety, other drivers aren't exactly throwing a party in favor of the new design. "I don't like it," said Billy Boat, who has logged nearly as many laps at PIR as anyone from the Valley. "Turn 2 and that dogleg is what makes it so unique." Construction will necessitate adding some banking to the new Turn 2 at the point where the wall is being extended outward to connect to the current crossover opening for infield vehicular access. A temporary wall also is being constructed where the crossover is now because a permanent opening no longer is needed due to a vehicle/pedestrian tunnel being built in Turn 4. Both projects are proceeding simultaneously, and completion is expected near the end of August, which should allow about four to five weeks of curing before a NASCAR Winston West/Southwest Series doubleheader scheduled Oct. 4-5. Both projects are expected to cost a combined $6 million.(Arizona Republic)(5-30-2003)

    • PIR seeks aid in landing 2nd race: Phoenix International Raceway officials plan to hit the legislative road again next week, hoping to elicit support for public help in their bid to land a coveted second NASCAR Winston Cup Series race. PIR President Bryan Sperber wants to add permanent lighting surrounding the 1-mile oval and improve adjacent roads, enticements that could help persuade NASCAR to award the Avondale track an additional race in 2004 or beyond. PIR, Kansas Speedway and California Speedway are actively pursuing second races. Word on pit road is the Fontana, Calif., facility has the inside track for one of two races that NASCAR said could be added to next year's schedule. NASCAR announced plans in January to begin realigning the schedule as early as 2004, pulling second races from existing racetracks and shifting them to more marketable single-race venues.(Arizona Republic)(4-19-2003)

    • NASCAR Happy with changes at Phoenix: A project to widen the racing surface at Phoenix International Raceway by repositioning the outer concrete wall near the exit of Turn 2 is getting a nod of approval from NASCAR officials. "It's a great idea," NASCAR spokesman Jim Hunter said. "I really think it will enhance competition because drivers are pinched the way it is now when they come out of that corner. This frees them up." The Turn 2 wall ends abruptly before picking up again along the back straightaway near the dogleg. The opening is one of two in that area. The first gap allows safety vehicles to be positioned just off the racing surface, and the second opening nearer the dogleg is how infield traffic crosses the racetrack. The plan is to connect the walls, but to do so in a way that would enlarge the racing surface and create a more rounded effect in Turn 2. Although PIR will retain a small, movable opening near where the current crossover is now, most of the infield traffic will be shifted to Turn 4, where a vehicular/pedestrian tunnel will be constructed at the same time as the Turn 2 project starts sometime around mid-May.(Arizona Republic)(3-28-2003)

    • Phoenix to Build Tunnel and other improvements: Construction soon will begin to build a vehicular/pedestrian tunnel beneath Turn 4 and to reconfigure Turn 2 and the dogleg forming the back straightaway at Phoenix International Raceway. PIR President Bryan Sperber said construction on the two projects, although still on the architectural drawing board, likely will begin in May, and completion is expected long before the next scheduled event in early October. Sperber, who has discussed the Turn 2 project with NASCAR and Indy Racing League officials, wants to widen the turn and make it more of a sweeping corner, similar to Turns 3 and 4. Currently, the outer concrete wall is designed in such a way that it pinches and significantly narrows the turn. "I believe a redesign would enhance the racing action," Sperber said. "Right now they (drivers) sort of get choked down coming out of that turn. If it were wider, it would open things up and create another passing zone. I think drivers are happy the way it is now, but I think they'll be more happy with a new reconfiguration." Sperber said part of the grassy infield along the dogleg could also be paved to create more racing surface.(Arizona Republic)(3-21-2003)

    • Phoenix looking for a 2nd Cup race: Phoenix International Raceway officials are working to land a second NASCAR Winston Cup race, a move that could bring a $200 million economic impact annually. But, to capture the race, the track likely will have to make improvements relating to access and lighting that it can't afford to make alone. PIR is working closely with the Arizona Department of Commerce to find funds to finance such projects, but state budgets are tight and the timetable is short. NASCAR is expected to move two races out of the Southeast over the next two years, and PIR is battling with cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles and Kansas City for a new event. PIR has hosted a Winston Cup event since 1988. Bryan Sperber, president of PIR, said he has been working with DOC to identify economic development dollars that may be available for track improvements. Sperber said PIR's Achilles heel may be providing improved access to the facility if it were expanded. The DOC is working with PIR to provide funds that could be put toward more roads leading in and out of the facility. "If we grow the stadium from 78,000 to 94,000 seats, our roads couldn't support it," he said. Sperber also wants to demonstrate the facility is continuing to improve. The track last summer made $10 million in improvements with the addition of a 3-acre concourse and 14 luxury suites. More improvements are in the planning stage.(in part for the Business Journal)(3-18-2003)

    • Phoenix and Lights? Phoenix International Raceway wants taxpayers to help pay for new track lights and adjacent road improvements to help land another NASCAR race. A proposed additional spring race would provide a huge economic windfall to the Valley and complement the Checker Auto Parts 500 in the fall, PIR President Bryan Sperber said Friday. The Checker race accounts for an estimated $59 million in direct spending in metropolitan Phoenix, the biggest sports-related economic impact on the community outside of the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, according to an Arizona State University study. Sperber has had discussions with Avondale, Maricopa County, the state, U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl and the Gila River Indian Community. County Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox said she was huddling with staff Tuesday to find a way to help PIR, which has not disclosed how much it would contribute. Sperber's request has become common in the Valley, where taxpayers have footed the bill for major sports corporations. Glendale, for example, is paying $180 million toward the Phoenix Coyotes' new arena, and Phoenix is paying $10 million toward renovations at America West Arena. Maricopa County taxpayers paid $238 million to finance most of Bank One Ballpark. A total price tag has not been disclosed, but Sperber said the lights would cost $4.8 million. Avondale is spending $12.2 million to widen 115th Avenue to seven lanes from two on about 1.5 miles from Interstate 10 to Buckeye Road, according to the city. Developers already have widened the next mile to Lower Buckeye Road to five lanes. That would leave approximately two miles of two-lane road to PIR to be renovated.(Arizona Republic)(3-1-2003)

    • Prusinski Named PIR Public Relations Manager: Bryan Sperber, President of Phoenix International Raceway, announced this afternoon that long-time sports public relations specialist Mike Prusinski has been named PIR Public Relations Manager. Prusinski replaces Kenny Kane who became the Vice President of Communications at Daytona International Speedway earlier this month. Prusinski comes to PIR after just one year as the Director of Marketing Communications at the Verizon Byron Nelson Classic in Dallas, Texas. Prior to working with the PGA Tour, he spent 14 years in the athletic media relations department at the University of Oklahoma. He began at OU in 1987 as an assistant and was named director in 1994. He served as the director until May of 2001 when he resigned to spend more time with his family and work in professional golf. In his only year working the a PGA Tour event, Prusinski was responsible for developing the first advertising and marketing plan for the tournament, created a year-round media plan and supervised all interview requests for the tournament's namesake, Byron Nelson. During his tenure at OU, Prusinski won numerous awards for media guides and programs, hosted large media events and directed promotional campaigns for some of the prestigious collegiate awards. A 1984 graduate of Murray State (Ky.) University, Prusinski also served as an assistant media relations director at the University of Kansas and University of Colorado before moving to Oklahoma. Prusinski and his wife, Kathryn, have been married five years and have three children: Matt (18), Mitch (11) and Abigail (3).(PIR PR)(12-12-2002)

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


    • Johnson Helping Out: Jimmy Johnson will donate $48 - he drives the #48 Chevrolet - for every lap he completes Sunday in the NASCAR Winston Cup Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. The money will be ticketed to help those families affected by the wildfires in Southern California. Johnson grew up in the city of El Cajon, near one of the fires burning in San Diego County. In addition, Lowe's, the sponsor on his Hendrick Motorsports Chevy, will donate $100,000 to the American Red Cross.(Orange County Register)(10-29-2003)

    • Mike Wallace in the #09 for six races: Mike Wallace will drive the #09 Miccosukee Indian Gaming Dodge, owned by James Finch, in six Cup races through the end of the season. Wallace finished ninth in Finch's car in the season opening Daytona 500. "I'm excited to be teaming up with James Finch and the Miccosukee Indian Gaming people again," said Wallace. "It's no secret that James brings good equipment to every race and I'm looking forward to the six races that we've been able to put together." Wallace will drive Winston Cup races at the following tracks: Richmond on Sept. 6; Talladega on Sept. 28; Kansas on Oct. 5; Atlanta on Oct. 26; Phoenix on Nov. 2; and Homestead on Nov. 16. "Back at the beginning of the season, James and I looked at a schedule like this," continued Wallace. "But, as the season went on I had the chance to drive for the Army and we put this on hold. As things worked out, I'm available again and I appreciate being able to put this deal together. I look forward to all the tracks that we're racing on. Talladega is one that I really look forward to along with Phoenix where I had my career best Winston Cup finish, a second, in 2001. "Driving for James, we'll be strong at each race." Along with the six NASCAR Winston Cup Series races, Wallace will continue at the wheel of the #4 GEICO Chevy for Busch Series competition.(Biagi Bros PR)(8-26-2003)

    • See the 2003 Team Chart which has links to past news for each team and info on each team and the 2004 Team Chart for next season.


      Car#/Driver Sponsor/Scheme/Promo Race/Date Image?
      #17-Matt Kenseth Million Dollar Challenge Phoenix - Nov none....yet
      #18-Bobby Labonte Advair (hood) Phoenix - Nov Car #'s 0-23 page
      #24-Jeff Gordon Looney Tunes
      Yosemite Sam
      Phoenix - Nov Cars #'s 24-99 page
      #25-Brian Vickers Looney Tunes
      Bugs Bunny
      Phoenix - Nov Cars #'s 24-99 page
      #30-Steve Park Looney Tunes
      Daffy Duck
      Phoenix - Nov Cars #'s 24-99 page
      #38-Elliott Sadler Pedigree Dog Food Phoenix - Nov Cars #'s 24-99 page

    • Looney Tunes for Gordon at Phoenix UPDATE - more drivers: Jeff Gordon will take time from racing today to go Hollywood. At Warner Bros. Studios, the "Looney Tunes – Back in Action" movie will be formally introduced to the entertainment media at a press conference that will include an appearance by Gordon and the unveiling of the DuPont No. 24 Fire & Flames show car decked out with Looney Tunes images. Last year Gordon and the #24 car filmed a cameo scene in the movie, playing opposite animated Looney Tunes characters Yosemite Sam, Daffy Duck, Bugs Bunny and others. The picture will debut nationally for holiday audiences in November. To promote the release of this new WB show, with the Looney Tunes gang, the graphic design of the DuPont Fire & Flames#24 Monte Carlo and Jeff's Fire & Flames uniform will carry images of Looney Tunes characters during the Sunday, November 2 Winston Cup race at Phoenix. In addition, a DuPont Motorsports Network Sponsor brand, Zodiaq® quartz surfaces, appears on the No. 24 car TV panel for this special theme race at Phoenix.(DuPont Site - thanks to many readers for the heads up)(4-24-2003)
      UPDATE: In the Looney Tunes: Back In Action NASCAR Winston Cup race, #24-Jeff Gordon will team up with Yosemite Sam on his Looney Tunes-branded Chevrolet, along with driver #25-Joe Nemechek who will feature graphics of Bugs Bunny on his #25 UAW-Delphi Chevrolet. Kerry Earnhardt will join forces once again with Yosemite Sam in the NASCAR Busch Series race where he will drive his #12 Supercuts Chevrolet, and for the first time ever, a NASCAR Craftsman Truck event will be even more animated when Kevin Harvick hooks up with his favorite Looney Tunes teammate, the Tasmanian Devil on his #6 Chevrolet truck.(Action PR), see an image of Gordon's car on my 2003 Winston Cup Paint Schemes Gallery - Cars #'s 24-99.(4-25-2003)
      Another Looney Tunes: hearing #30-Steve Park will run a Looney Tunes scheme (not sure which one) at Phoenix along with #24-Jeff Gordon (Yosemite Sam) and #25-Joe Nemechek (Bugs Bunny), Busch driver #12-Kerry Earnhardt (Yosemite Sam) and Kevin Harvick in the Truck Series race (with Taz),......more drivers to come?(5-16-2003)
      UPDATE: added image of the #30 AOL/Looney Tunes/Daffy Duck scheme to my Cup page.(5-29-2003)
      UPDATE 3: hearing Kerry Earnhardt will still be part of the program but in the #03 RCR Chevy, may be in Cup may be Busch, unsure.(9-4-2003)

    • New Assoc for Gibbs UPDATE: Joe Gibbs Racing has signed a deal with GlaxoSmithKline, which makes Advair, an asthma maintenance treatment, an associate sponsor on the team's #18 and #20 cars. Driver Bobby Labonte, who has asthma, will be a spokesman for the program and will encourage fans to visit an educational trailer to be located trackside at NASCAR events.(
      UPDATE: Bobby Labonte's car will switch from green to purple for the Food City 500 at Bristol next month. The color-scheme change is being used to promote Advair, an asthma treatment that Labonte has started using. Labonte's primary sponsor, Interstate Batteries, is taking its name off the car for that race to let him promote the medication. "It's helping me get off the quick-relief (inhalers)," Labonte said of Advair. "I was racing a car at Martinsville, Va., and saw a guy beside me that had quick-relief taped to his helmet in case he had to use it. I thought, 'Oh, my gosh, that guy's got it worse than I do.'" Part of Advair's season-long promotion includes testing for lung problems at most of the race tracks. Stan Hull, a representative of GlaxoSmithKline, which makes the product, said that more than 1,400 people underwent lung testing during Speed Weeks.(Fayetteville Observer) AND the #18 Chevy will also have Advair on the hood for the races at Rockingham, Atlanta, The Winston, Dover, Chicago, Pocono, Darlington, Kansas and Phoenix. See images of both schemes on on the 2003 Cup page.(2-22-2003)

    • Million Dollar Challenge again UPDATE: DeWalt's is set to launch their Million Dollar Challenge promotion once again giving fans and end-users a chance to compete for one million dollars.(Roush Racing)(1-28-2003)
      UPDATE: hearing the #17 Ford will run the Million Dollar Challenge at the Budweiser Shootout [which it did] and then at Phoenix, supposedly the same scheme as last year, with a few minor decal changes(2-5-2003)

    • More Paint Scheme news can be found on Paint Schemes Gallery


    • Lucky Dog now gets one pitstop: NASCAR is amending its "Lucky Dog" rule, which allows the first car one lap down to get the lap back when there is a caution. Starting Sunday at Atlanta, a driver who gets a lap back because of the rule can't make a second pit stop during that caution to top off with fuel. Ryan Newman used that strategy in his September win at Dover.(FoxSports/Sporting News), see the rule, past news and info on the rule on my Caution Rule page.(10-20-2003)

    • No Racing to the Caution Rule and Q&A

    • New rule for measuring minimum height: NASCAR issued a technical bulletin this week outlining changes in how the minimum height is measured of Winston Cup cars in pre-qualifying and pre-race inspections. Beginning with this weekend's race at New Hampshire, teams presenting cars for inspection of the minimum body height and minimum ground clearance must remove their front shock absorbers before the measurements are taken. The absorbers can be reconnected after the car has passed inspection.(

    • NASCAR to require Cup, Busch, Truck teams to add fuel cell area fire extinuisher: NASCAR officials announced today that all vehicles in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, NASCAR Busch Series and NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series will require an additional fire-extinguishing cylinder solely dedicated to the fuel cell area, effective Aug. 13 but recommended immediately. An automatic, thermally activated discharge nozzle recommended by the manufacturer for this application must activate the cylinder, which is required to be made of DOT-approved metal. The automatic system may have a manual and/or pneumatic override from the driver-activated system. The cylinder must be mounted in the driver's compartment and will attach to a steel bracket welded to the frame and/or roll cage of the vehicle. When discharged, the extinguisher releases Halon in the area of the fire. Halon, a proven and extremely effective fire suppressant, is a liquefied compressed gas that stops the spread of fire by chemically disrupting combustion. A minimum of 10 pounds of fire extinguishing agent is required in the cylinder for the fuel cell area. In addition to the fire extinguisher cylinder being added for the fuel cell area, NASCAR has enhanced its requirements and specifications for the current on-board driver protection system as well as the fuel cell vent area. The cockpit extinguisher, a manually controlled push or pull knob that activates a fully charged fire-extinguishing pressurized cylinder, now must contain a minimum of five pounds of extinguishing agent. Should the cylinder also be used for fire extinguishing in the engine compartment, it must contain a minimum of 10 pounds of extinguishing agent. The cylinder also must be securely mounted to the frame and/or roll cage, and hose clamps, worm drive clamps and cable ties are not permitted. In addition, all discharge lines and fittings for the cylinders must be steel or steel-reinforced hose although the nozzles may remain aluminum. A maximum length for the neck of the fuel cell check valve vent hose has been set at three inches. By limiting length, it will make the component more impact resistant. The neck connects the fuel cell to the fuel cell vent hose and is located inside the trunk area of the vehicle. To accommodate the maximum neck length standard, fuel cell vent hoses will increase in length from 60 inches to a maximum of 66 inches.(NASCAR PR)(7-30-2003)

    • New Gas Can Rule: Beginning with the July 13 race at Chicagoland Speedway, NASCAR will prohibit teams from throwing or tossing gas cans or gas catch cans over the pit wall during a pit stop. The change was announced in Sunday's prerace drivers' meeting. If a violation happens under caution, the driver will have to restart at the end of the longest line. If it occurs under green-flag conditions, the driver must return to pit road to serve a 15-second penalty. The change is being made to reduce the liklihood of gas spills during pit stops.(



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