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THE NEXT Winston Cup RACE
NEWS, STATS and INFO

THE RACE: Samsung/RadioShack 500

Winston Cup Race #7 of 36 for the 2003 Winston Cup season
Updated: often, leading up to the race

  • Race: Sunday, March 30th, 2003 in Fort Worth, TX

  • TV: Fox - 1:00pm/et

  • Pre-Race Show: Fox - 12:30pm/et - with hosts Chris Myers and Jeff Hammond

  • Race Re-Air: April 2nd at 8:00pm/et on Speed Channel, April 3rd at 1:00am/et and 3:00pm/et on Speed Channel

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

  • Announcers: Mike Joy, Darrell Waltrip, Larry McReynolds

  • Pit Reporters: Dick Berggren, Matt Yocum, Steve Byrnes, Jeanne Zelasko

  • Hollywood Hotel: Chris Myers and Jeff Hammond

  • NASCAR on TV and Fox Sports

  • Purse/Race Awards: $6,047,759 (was $5,497,422 in 2002)

  • Entry List: Entry List for the race from NASCAR.com

  • 2002 Race Winner: Matt Kenseth, 142.453mph, started 31st

  • Track Race Record: Terry Labonte, March 1999, 144.276mph

  • Track/Race Length: 1.5-mile quad oval, 334 laps, 501 miles

  • Pit Road Speed: 45mph


    Practice

  • Practice: Friday, Mar 28th, 12:20 -2:20pm/et; and Saturday, Mar 29th, 10:30 - 11:15am/et

  • Happy Hour Practice: Saturday, Mar 29th, 12:10 - 12:55pm/et on TV-FX via tape at 1:00pm/et.


    Qualifying

  • Qualifying Draw: Friday, March 28th, 11:20am/et

  • Qualfying Order: Bristol qualifying order - ThatsRacin.com and/or Samsung/RadioShack 500 qualifying order - NASCAR.com

  • First Round Qualifying: 2 laps for positions 1-36, Friday, Mar 28th at 4:05pm/et, TV-FSN Fox Sports Net live [and re-aired on Speed Channel, Friday, Mar 28th at 8:00pm/et and on Sat, Mar 29th at 1:00am/et], and live via PRN radio/internet (link below) and XM Satellite - NASCAR Radio (Subscription Required)

  • 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: Bill Elliott, April 2002, 194.224mph

  • March 2002 Pole Sitter: #9-Bill Elliott, 194.224, finished 9th.


    Track Specs:
    Degree of Banking: Turns: 24 degrees
    Straightaways: Banking: 5 degrees;
    Straights: Frontstraight - 2250 feet; Backstraight - 1330 feet
    Grandstand Seating: 154,861

  • Track Homepage: Texas Motor Speedway


    Pole Winners at Texas

    2002 Bill Elliott, #9 Dodge, 194.224, finished 9th 2001 Dale Earnhardt Jr, #8 Chevy, 190.678mph, finished 8th
    2000 Terry Labonte, #5 Chevy, 192.137mph, finished 8th
    1999 Kenny Irwin Jr, #28 Ford, 190.154mph, finished 15th
    1998 Jeremy Mayfield, #12 Ford, 185.906mph, finished 23rd
    1997 none, rained out


    Race Winners at Texas

    2002 Matt Kenseth, #17 Ford, 142.453, started 31st
    2001 Dale Jarrett, #88 Ford, 141.804mph, started 3rd
    2000 Dale Earnhardt Jr, #8 Chevy, 131.152mph, started 4th
    1999 Terry Labonte, #5 Chevy, 144.276mph, started 4th
    1998 Mark Martin, #6 Ford, 136.771mph, started 7th
    1997 Jeff Burton, #99 Ford, 125.111mph, started 5th


    GOODYEAR TIRE FAST FACTS

    NASCAR Winston Cup Series - Race No. 7 - Samsung/Radioshack 500
    Texas Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval) - Fort Worth, Tex.
    Fast Facts for March 28-30, 2003

    NUMBER OF TIRES REQUIRED:
    Winston Cup: Left - 1,200; Right - 1,200

    TECHNICAL INSPECTION INFLATION:
    Left Front - 30 psi
    Right Front - 50 psi
    Left Rear - 30 psi
    Right Rear - 47 psi

    MINIMUM RECOMMENDED INFLATION:
    Left Front - 25 psi
    Right Front - 48 psi
    Left Rear - 25 psi
    Right Rear - 44 psi

    TIRES:
    Goodyear Eagle Speedway Radials.

    D Codes: Left - D-6352; Right - D-6364.

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

    Estimated Pit Window: Every 60-65 laps, based on fuel mileage.

    GOODYEAR NOTES:
    This is the second consecutive year teams will run on this particular combination of left- and right-side tires at Texas. While the left-side code (D-6352) dates back to 2001 at the track, the right-side code (D-6364) was first introduced here in 2002 (see quote below). This is the only major NASCAR track that this specific combination will be used on this year.

    Both the Winston Cup and Busch Series teams, as well as Craftsman Truck Series teams later in the season (June 6 and October 11), will run on these tires at Texas. As on all NASCAR ovals longer than one mile, teams are required to run inner liners in all four tire positions at Texas. The air pressure in the inner liners must be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.

    GOODYEAR QUOTE:
    Mark Keto, Lead Engineer, Stock Car Tire Development --
    "After Texas was repaved late in 2001 and Goodyear had the chance to run a test there before last season, we decided to bring a new right-side tire to the track beginning with the 2002 Winston Cup race. Since new track surfaces tend to have a lot of grip, but don't necessarily force tires to wear much, the right-side we decided on offered an increased wear rate to better control heat buildup in the tire. Overall, the track surface at Texas is extremely smooth and fast with very little tire give-up over the course of a full fuel run."

    From the Goodyear Racing Site


    RACE BONUS INFO

  • The NASCAR Winston Cup Leader Bonus is $70,000 at Texas 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(3-23-2003)

  • MBNA Mid-Race Leader Bonus: is $15,000 at Texas. 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 (Bobby Labonte last won the bonus, $15,000 + $10,000 at Atlanta on Mar 9, 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*
    Rockingham: Rusty Wallace, $10,000
    Las Vegas: Dale Earnhardt Jr., $10,000
    Atlanta: Bobby Labonte, $25,000*
    Darlington: Mark Martin, $10,000
    Bristol: Jimmy Spencer, $10,000
    (* won race and bonus)(3-24-2003)


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

Radio Coverage:
Performance Racing Network(PRN) and


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 Fort Worth/Dallas, TX Area:
Dallas Morning News
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Texas Online
Times Record News


WEATHER FORECASTS:
The Weather Channel
Weather Underground
National Weather Service
Accuweather


TRACK/TRAVEL/CAMPING INFO FOR THE FANS:
Laid Back Racing
Fort Worth, TX


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


TV Coverage/Info/News Pages:
Perfect Paranoia
Race Fan TV

IN-CAR AUDIO SITES


QUALIFYING, PRACTICE and RESULTS
news and links

  • Rumblings - Texas: Newman's win in the Samsung/Radio Shack 500 was the first for a Dodge this season, and was worth $406,500 from the nice $6M+ in posted awards. He becomes our 7th different winner in seven races, and now has a victory that went the distance (his win at Loudon last year was rain-shortened to 207 laps from the 300 scheduled). We got treated to some more of NASCAR making up the rules on the fly this weekend. First, they destroy the chances (and the car) of Brian Vickers in yesterday's Busch race, then today's lead lap fiasco reared it's ugly head. It's pretty obvious the most useless part in NASCAR is the rule book. How can you give two drivers their laps back when all they passed was the second place car? We can't say we didn't know this was coming....this policy of the leader slowing down to let drivers back on the lead lap has gotten laughable. And, this idea of a "gentleman's agreement" is a farce. It appears that NASCAR will decide who's a gentleman and who isn't...and I'll bet the drivers aren't in agreement, either.
    Jerry Nadeau (4th) had his best finish since he was 4th at Atlanta in November of 2001.
    Jeff Green (7th) had his best finish since he was 5th at Talladega last October.
    Todd Bodine (11th) had his best finish since he was 5th at Richmond last September.
    STREAKIN....Matt Kenseth has 6 Top-10's in a row. Dale Earnhardt Jr has 4 Top-10's in the last 5 races.
    This Week's Elevator....UP: Operator of the Week is Mark Martin (+27), followed by John Andretti (+24), Kurt Busch (+21), Ward Burton (+21), and Michael Waltrip (+20). DOWN: The Big Dropper was Elliott Sadler (-39), followed by Bill Elliott (-37), Bobby Labonte (-36), Joe Nemechek (-26), and Steve Park (-24). Some pretty wild swings on the down side this week.
    #30-Jeff Green led today for the first time since Phoenix last November. #1-Steve Park led today for the first time since Richmond last September. We've now had 28 different leaders this season.(Stock Car Fans)(3-31-2003)

  • Newman wins at Texas: #12-Ryan Newman won the Samsung/RadioShack 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, his first win of the year and 2nd of his 2 year career. #-Earnhardt Jr and #24-Gordon beat and banged to 2nd place, with Earnhardt Jr winning the position by about 3 feet. #17-Kenseth finished 6th and increased his points lead to 155 points. #20-Stewart lost an engine late in the race. Newman is the 7th different winner at Texas in 7 races and is the 7th different winner in 7 2003 races this season. The top ten finishers, stats, cautions and notes:

    #12-Ryan Newman (72 laps led)
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr (35 laps led)
    #24-Jeff Gordon (16 laps led)
    #01-Jerry Nadeau
    #6-Mark Martin

    #17-Matt Kenseth (63 laps led)
    #30-Jeff Green(2 laps led)
    #48-Jimmie Johnson (nursed a bad engine the last few laps)
    #97-Kurt Busch
    #42-Jamie McMurray (highest finishing rookie)

    2003 Points leader: #17-Matt Kenseth finished 6th
    2002 Champ: #20-Tony Stewart lost an engine late in the race and ended up 34th.

    Laps Leaders (10): #38-Elliott Sadler(91 laps led and most laps led); #9-Bill Elliott(43); #32-Ricky Craven(2); #24-Jeff Gordon(16); #17-Matt Kenseth(65); #12-Ryan Newman (77); #30-Jeff Green(2); #7-Jimmy Spencer (1); #1-Steve Park(1); #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr (35); #88-Dale Jarrett(1);
    Cars on the lead lap: 13 (of 43 starters)
    Off track/out of race (11): #9-Elliott (out-engine); #74-Raines (out-engine); #38-Sadler (out-accident); #4-Skinner (out-accident); #1-Park (out-accident); #45-Fittipaldi (out-accident); #25-Nemechek (out-accident); #18-Labonte (out-accident); #20-Stewart (out-engine); #77-Blaney (out-engine); #10-Benson(out-engine);

    Cautions 10 for 52 laps (approx)
    Caution 10: lap 283-289: #25-Nemechek hit the wall, lost a tire, was interviewed a bit later and is ok.
    Caution 9: lap 252-253: #18-Labonte spun and hit the inside wall on the backstretch, serious damage on the left front end.
    Caution 8: lap 242-249: #45-Fittipaldi spun around and backed into the wall, may have gotten tapped by someone, #88-Jarrett also spun during the incident.
    Caution 7: lap 235-240: #1-Park got loose and spun, #4-Skinner hit the #1 and spun hard into the inside retaining wall, #22-Burton mad some contact with #0-Sprague. Caution 6: lap 227-232: #7-Spencer after gtetting together with #20-Stewart and spun, a few others spun and got together #21-Rudd, #40-Marlin, #5-Labonte and #19-Mayfield.
    Caution 5: lap 169-178: #38-Sadler got very loose and spun, hitting the inside wall head on, he is ok.
    Caution 4: lap 155-160: Debris on the track from the #16-Biffle car.
    Caution 3: lap 48-50: #9-Elliott blew an engine on the restart after caution 2. #7-Spencer got his lap back.
    Caution 2: lap 43-46: #1-Park got loose in turn 4 and spun thru the infield grass. #40-Marlin slapped the wall with the right front fender to avoid Park but drove on.
    Caution 1: lap 14-17: #7-Spencer is smoking badly, Spencer says oil temp and pressure is ok. Ended up being the main oil line came loose.

    NOTES: As of lap 305, #10-Benson reports possible engine problem. #20-Tony Stewart started smoking around lap 295 and took the car to the garage. During caution 10, all the lead laps cars, except #88-Jarrett came in, all took 4 tires, except #12-Newman and #2-Wallace; #42-McMurray had a loose lugnut on his stop and lost 10 spots.. As the caution 7 happened, many of the cars on the tail end of the lead lap got their lap back, including #2, #24, #6, #49, #54, #17, #48 and 320. On lap 220, #2-Wallace and #18-Labonte got together, #2-Wallace tapped the wall and #18 has a tire rub on the right front and is smoking. On lap 189 the #16-Biffle car was black flagged for the loose left front fender. During caution five pit stops, #25-Nemechek, #88-Jarrett and #22-Burton got together with #22 spinning and #88 getting front end damage, both the #25 and #88 made many pitstops during the custion to make repairs. During caution 5, after further review, #21-Rudd and #97-Busch were given a lap back as the passed the leader [#17] to get their lap back and #24 who was 2nd when the yellow waved, tried to keep those cars down their laps. Around lap 102-108 range all the lead lap cars came in to pit during the green flag, #7-Spencer stayed out and got his lap back and took over the lead. All lead lap cars [but #32-Craven - to lead a lap] came in on Caution 2 to pit. On the restart after caution 1, #48-Johnson got into #43-Andretti who got a poor start, #41-Mears also got into #29-Harvick on the restart, no major damage. #29-Harvick is the only one of the leaders who came in to pit on the first caution along with about 20 others, most who were in the rear of the field. On lap 12, #7-Jimmy Spencer is showing smoke. Five cars went to the rear of the field before the drop of the green flag, #11, #40, #48 and #54 for engine changes and #45 for a driver change [Petty to Fittipaldi]
    Re-Air: the race will be re-aired on Speed Channel, Wed, Aro 2nd, 8:00pm/et and Thurs, Apr 3rd, 1:00am/et and at 3:00pm/et.(3-30-2003)

    Result Links at:
    ThatsRacin.com, NASCAR.com Motorsports One.(3-30-2003)

  • Fittipaldi to give Kyle Saturday off UPDATE 2 Petty has two cracked ribs and will NOT race Sunday: #45-Kyle Petty got through practice and qualifying Friday, but likely won't get back behind the wheel again at Texas Motor Speedway before Sunday's race. After hitting a wall at Bristol last week, Petty needed help getting out of his car and was placed on a stretcher. He was treated and released from the hospital, but is still hurting. "Kyle is pretty sore," said Steve Lane, crew chief of the #45 Georgia Pacific Dodge. "As for the race, I'm going to let him make the call. We're going to let Christian Fittipaldi practice the car Saturday." Petty qualified 28th at Texas. If Petty is unable to finish Sunday, Fittipaldi - a former Formula One and CART driver - would take over.(ThatsRacin.com/AP)
    UPDATE: Kyle Petty had xray's taken after qualifying on Friday at Texas and it was found he has two cracked ribs. It is expected that Christian Fittipaldi will race in the #45 Brawny Dodge Sunday, not sure if from the start or as a relief driver.(FX Coverage of Happy Hour)(3-29-2003)
    UPDATE 2: Kyle Petty will not race today at Texas in the #45 Brawny Dodge, Christian Fittipaldi will start the race and run the distance.(Fox Sports Net's NASCAR This Morning)(3-30-2003)

  • To the Back - #11, #40, #45 and #54? UPDATE; #11-Brett Bodine, who lost an engine in Friday's practice and will fall to the rear of the field before the drop of the green flag on Sunday, shame, he qualified 25th. #48-Jimmie Johnson lost an engine during Happy Hour [he was fastest], theteam will have to change engines and fall to the rear of the field before the green flag, he was to start 4th. If Christian Fittipaldi starts the #45 Brawny Dodge in place of Kyle Petty, he will have to fall to the rear of the field also. If an engine is changed at any point during the race weekend, if the backup car is used AFTER qualfiying or the driver is changed AFTER qualifying, the car must go to the rear of the field before the green flag. #40-Sterling Marlin's team also made an engine change after Happy Hour practice and will have to go to the rear of the field before thr start of the race. And even though the incorrect car number is listed, Speed Channel site lists Todd Bodine, in the #54 (not #19 but the story may mean starting position no car#) as going to the back for an engine change also.(3-29-2003)
    UPDATE: Fox Sports Net's NASCAR This Morning TV show lists the #11, #40 and #48 to the rear of the field for engine changes and the #45 due to a driver change. Nothing mentioned on the #54 or #19.(3-30-2003)

  • Happy Hour practice at Texas for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 is over. The fastest was #48-Jimmie Johnson at 188.983 followed by #12-Ryan Newman at 188.732 and #01-Jerry Nadeau at 187.656. Slowest were #11-Brett Bodine at 183.380 and #1-Steve Park at 183.642. FX will cover Happy Hour via tape at 1:00pm/et today, Saturday, March 29th.
    See speeds at ThatsRacin.com.(3-29-2003)

  • Labonte backs up qualifying in Sat AM practice: pole sitter #18-Bobby Labonte was the fastest in the first [of two] Saturday practices with a speed of 188.679mph, followed by #48-Jimmie Johnson at 188.409 [starts 4th] and #9-Bill Elliott at 188.363 [starts 6th]. Slowest were #11-Brett Bodine at 182.174 and 45-Kyle Petty [Christian Fittipaldi?] at 184.168.
    For all the speeds, see ThatsRacin.com.(3-29-2003)

  • So What Happened to Craven? #32-Ricky Craven will start 38th here on Cal Wells III's owner provisional points after posting no speed during qualifying. Craven took the #32 Tide Pontiac Grand Prix out after #30-Jeff Green's run. But Craven backed off, claiming there was oil on the racetrack. In his post-qualifying comments, Green admitted his #30 AOL Chevy was carrying a little too much oil in its tank, and it affected his second lap. "I guess we blew some oil out and [it] got on our right rear tire up off [Turn] 4, going to the white flag," Green said. "I smelled the smoke, so I knew I wasn't going to be able to go another lap." NASCAR officials, however, said that Craven officially had taken the green flag and would not be allowed to make another attempt.(Fort Worth Star Telegram)(3-29-2003)

  • Ramblings - Texas: Joe Gibbs Racing experienced both ends of the spectrum today. First, Tony Stewart's Home Depot Chevy was confiscated and impounded by NASCAR for further inspection back in Charlotte. Some little thing about not fitting the templates and the offset in the rear deck of the car....Then, Bobby Labonte went out and grabbed his second Bud pole of the season.
    Jimmie Johnson (4th) had his best qualifying run since he started on the outside pole at Atlanta last October.
    Kevin Harvick (8th) has his best starting spot since he lined up on the outside pole at Michigan last August.
    Terry Labonte (12th) has his best starting spot since he started 5th at Richmond last September.
    STREAKIN.....Ryan Newman has 5 Top-5 starts in a row.
    Now for a word on everybody's favorite driver, Mr. Lead Lap. His 7th place finish last week at Bristol was his best since he was 7th at Homestead in November of 2000. He resides in 9th place in the points....a drastic improvement from last year at this time when he was 15th. He's 56 points better than last year (725-669) and now has an average finish of 14.3. This is starting to look like the salad days of the mid-90s when he consistently finished in the Top-10 in the points (as high as 6th in 1996).(StockCarFans.Com)(3-29-2003)

  • Bobby Labonte wins pole at Texas: #18-Bobby Labonte wins the Bud Pole at Texas Motor Speedway for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 with a lap of 193.514mph, his 2nd pole of 2003. #38-Elliott Sadler is on the outside pole with a speed of 193.313. #20-Tony Stewart, in a backup car [primary was impounded - see story below] will start 22nd. Missing the race were #83-Kerry Earnhardt and #75-David Starr. See the speeds, practice speeds and rank, provisional rank, practive vs qualifying speeds and other info and links to lineups on my Texas Qualifying Page.(3-28-2003)

  • Some Qualifying Notes: #14-Larry Foyt is running a purple instead of the yellow colors this week. The #83-Kerry Earnhardt car is being leased from Andy Petree Racing and Petree is in the garage helping out a bit with the team. #11-Brett Bodine lost an engine in Friday's practice and was excused from his qualifying position and will go out when the car is ready, #43-Andretti had some electrical problems and also was excused form his spot in the order and will qualify when he is ready. #30-Green possibly laid down some sort of fluid, #32-Craven went out after Green and brought it in and NASCAR said he will not be able to go back out to qualify.(3-28-2003)

  • Friday Practice is over at Texas: #01-Jerry Nadeau was the fastest at 193.757 followed by #12-Ryan Newman at 193.375 and #48-Jimmie Johnson at 192.754. Slowest were #75-David Starr at 184.212 and #83-Kerry Earnhardt at 185.401 (both need to make the race on speed as they have no owners points to use a provisional). #20-Tony Stewart, in a backup since his primary was configated by NASCAR ran 32nd fastest at 189-500 (see story below)
    For all the speeds, see ThatsRacin.com.(3-28-2003)

  • Qualifying Order is up for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. 45 cars/driver listed. #0-Jack Sprague is slated to go out first with #25-Joe Nemechek scheduled out 45th and last. See above for the links.(3-28-2003)

  • Entry List is up for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. 45 cars are listed, the 42 full time teams, plus #11-Brett Bodine, #75-David Starr and #83-Kerry Earnhardt. Starr and Earnhardt must make the top 36 in speed to make the race as neither has any Owners Points to use a provisional. See the link above.(3-25-2003)

  • 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

  • Links: Practice speeds, qualifying and results can be found at these sites: NASCAR Online and That's Racin'


TRACK/RACE NEWS

  • Astronauts part of pre-race show: Astronauts Rob Behnken, Jim Reilly and Doug Hurley will appear during prerace ceremonies for Sunday's Samsung/Radio Shack 500. The astronauts are attending the race thanking citizens for their efforts in the recovery of the space shuttle Columbia. The trio will hand out miniature American flags to drivers during introductions.(NASCAR.com)(3-29-2003)

  • Ferko to make an appearance? Francis Ferko, the mystery man in a potentially historic lawsuit against NASCAR, has never made a public appearance since filing the case a little over a year ago, but the Plano, Texas, businessman could make an appearance here this weekend. Track owner Bruton Smith, who insisted he has never met Ferko and doesn't even know if Ferko has season tickets to Texas Motor Speedway, said it is possible that Ferko could be here and willing to discuss the case. "He's my hero," Smith said. "I haven't met him, but I like him." The suit argues that NASCAR should give Smith a second Winston Cup tour date here, much as the sanctioning body gave its sister company, the International Speedway Corp., tour dates at California Speedway, Chicago-lands Speedway, Kansas Speedway, and Homestead-Miami Speedway. Lawyers for Ferko say they would also ask for a financial award to make up for the missing Cup races.(Winston Salem Journal), see my Lawsuit page for past news(3-29-2003)

  • Texas Security: The war in Iraq hasn't caused Texas Motor Speedway officials to stiffen security this weekend, spokeswoman Sadona Winfrey said. However, race fans should expect the track's law enforcement complement to search their coolers and possibly cars, as has been standard practice since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Get to the speedway early in case of traffic queues, Winfrey advised. Dozens of local, county and state law enforcement officials, in addition to orange-vested private track security personnel, were seen during race qualifying Friday. U.S. military helicopters buzzed overhead Thursday. "This place is as safe as it could be for a venue this size," Winfrey said. "Fans should just expect to enjoy the action."(Dallas Morning News - may need to register to view))(3-29-2003)

  • Bradshaw's Daughter to sing National Anthem at Busch race: the daughter of FOX NFL Sunday host Terry Bradshaw will perform the national anthem. Fifteen-year-old Rachel Bradshaw will sing the "Star Spangled Banner" before her father's FitzBradshaw Racing will roll off two teams this Saturday. Kerry Earnhardt will drive the #12 Chevy, and Jimmy Spencer will pilot the #82 Chevy for the team this week.(Fox Sports)(3-28-2003)

  • Military and Patriotic Themes at Texas: Various branches of the United States military will be represented in numerous ways throughout the Samsung/RadioShack 500 race week at Texas Motor Speedway. Saturday's pre-race activities will feature the U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team as well as a flyover by four AT-38s from Shepherd Air Force Base in Wichita Falls, TX. The Civil Air Patrol will provide the color guard on Saturday. On Sunday, fans will be entertained by the 31-member 77th Army Band, the Pride of Fort Sill (Oklahoma). The band will provide music for driver introductions as well as perform the National Anthem. Four Apache helicopters from the 244th Aviation Brigade from Fort Hood in Killeen, Texas, are scheduled to flyover prior to driver introductions that day with a B-1 bomber from Dyess Air Force Base in Abilene, Texas, making a pass following the singing of God Bless America. Four F-16s from the Arkansas Air National Guard will fly over the speedway at the conclusion of the National Anthem. Military personnel will take part in driver introductions and the U.S. Army Golden Knights will parachute into the speedway following driver introductions. The Fort Hood NCO Academy will provide the color guard on Sunday. The O'Reilly 300 and Samsung/RadioShack 500 will be broadcast on Armed Forces radio and television. The United States Air Force is sponsoring the O'Reilly World of Outlaws events at the Texas Motor Speedway Dirt Track. The United States Air Force Showdown will be held Friday and Saturday nights, March 28-29. The USAF will also be holding a recruiting drive on Friday at the speedway and will have a large interactive display, including an F-16, located outside of Gate 7. Winston Cup drivers Todd Bodine will be in the #54 National Guard Ford, Jerry Nadeau in the #01 U.S. Army Pontiac and Ricky Rudd will carry the U.S. Air Force as an associate sponsor on the #21 Motorcraft Ford. Busch Series driver Bobby Hamilton Jr. will be driving the #25 Ford sponsored by the U.S. Marines. The first 100,000 fans arriving Sunday for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 will also receive a miniature American flag, courtesy of Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse.(TMS PR)(3-28-2003)

  • New Caution Lights at Texas UPDATE approved: In a continued commitment to improve driver safety, Texas Motor Speedway and System Electric Inc. of Fort Worth has developed and installed a unique new caution light system. The Warning Emergency System (WES) caution lights are imbedded in the asphalt at the base of the retaining walls in the speedway's four turns. The WES lights are available for use in this weekend's Samsung/RadioShack 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race and the O'Reilly 300 NASCAR Busch Series race should NASCAR choose to use them. The initial application installed WES lights in eight different locations around Texas Motor Speedway. Four sets of WES lights are located in turns one and two while an additional four sets are located in turns three and four. The WES light system supplements the speedway's existing caution light system. The WES lights are similar to airport runway lights. Each location provides a 15- foot long strip of LED lights that are six inches wide. Each 15-foot section includes a total of 180 LED lights. Should the WES lights prove successful, it is possible to install the lights all the way around the speedway surface. Further development may also allow them to be installed along the inside apron of the turns. Developing the WES lights were Dwayne Lyons, Electrical Engineer for System Electric; Wes Harris, Vice President of Development for Speedway Motorsports Inc.; Jim Stufflebeam, Director of Development for Texas Motor Speedway; and Mat Stolley, Director of Operations for Texas Motor Speedway.(TMS PR)(3-26-2003)
    UPDATE: NASCAR Winston Cup series director John Darby gave the go-ahead Thursday afternoon for a new system of on-track caution lights to be used this weekend at the Texas track. The lights, developed and installed by the track and System Electric Inc. of Fort Worth, are called the Warning Emergency System. Eight strips of yellow lights, 15 feet in length, are embedded in the asphalt at the base of the outside walls in the track's turns - four at each end of the track. Each strip has 180 lights that flash whenever the track's existing caution lights come on. "In the turns the drivers are focusing on the race track ahead of them," said Eddie Gossage, general manager of the Texas track. "Since the WES lights are embedded into the asphalt surface, our tests indicate the drivers will see them easier. We believe it will give them quicker notification of a problem on the track somewhere." Darby looked at the lights Thursday afternoon. "From what we can tell at this point, the lights are not located in an area where they would be an obstruction to the race cars," he said. "That was our primary concern."(ThatsRacin.com)(3-27-2003)

  • Sam Bass at TMS: Sam Bass, renowned motorsports artist, will be returning to the Texas Motor Speedway for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 NASCAR weekend to meet and greet the fans. Bass has been the souvenir program cover artist for Texas Motor Speedway since his painting was used to announce the track's inaugural 1997 Winston Cup race. This year's cover for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 souvenir program is called "Most Wanted!" and features portraits and cars of all previous NASCAR Winston Cup winners at Texas. After the opening of the Speedway Club, the Sam Bass Texas Motor Speedway Gallery was created to offer an ever-changing exhibit of the artist's work to Speedway Club members. New for the 2003 season is a display on the concourse during the race weekend with a selection of his fine art posters available alongside the track's official programs. Bass will also be signing autographs on the Concourse near Section 108 on Friday, March 28 from 10:30 - 11:30am and on Saturday, March 29 from 10:30 - 11:30am. UAW-GM will host autograph sessions at its display on the Midway on Friday, March 28 from 9:00 - 10:00am and Saturday, March 29 from 9:00 - 10:00am, where fans can pick up a free poster created by Bass to commemorate the spirit of American auto workers.(TMS PR)(3-26-2003)

  • New Caution Lights at Texas: In a continued commitment to improve driver safety, Texas Motor Speedway and System Electric Inc. of Fort Worth has developed and installed a unique new caution light system. The Warning Emergency System (WES) caution lights are imbedded in the asphalt at the base of the retaining walls in the speedway's four turns. The WES lights are available for use in this weekend's Samsung/RadioShack 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race and the O'Reilly 300 NASCAR Busch Series race should NASCAR choose to use them. The initial application installed WES lights in eight different locations around Texas Motor Speedway. Four sets of WES lights are located in turns one and two while an additional four sets are located in turns three and four. The WES light system supplements the speedway's existing caution light system. The WES lights are similar to airport runway lights. Each location provides a 15- foot long strip of LED lights that are six inches wide. Each 15-foot section includes a total of 180 LED lights. Should the WES lights prove successful, it is possible to install the lights all the way around the speedway surface. Further development may also allow them to be installed along the inside apron of the turns. Developing the WES lights were Dwayne Lyons, Electrical Engineer for System Electric; Wes Harris, Vice President of Development for Speedway Motorsports Inc.; Jim Stufflebeam, Director of Development for Texas Motor Speedway; and Mat Stolley, Director of Operations for Texas Motor Speedway.(TMS PR)(3-26-2003)
    UPDATE: NASCAR Winston Cup series director John Darby gave the go-ahead Thursday afternoon for a new system of on-track caution lights to be used this weekend at the Texas track. The lights, developed and installed by the track and System Electric Inc. of Fort Worth, are called the Warning Emergency System. Eight strips of yellow lights, 15 feet in length, are embedded in the asphalt at the base of the outside walls in the track's turns - four at each end of the track. Each strip has 180 lights that flash whenever the track's existing caution lights come on. "In the turns the drivers are focusing on the race track ahead of them," said Eddie Gossage, general manager of the Texas track. "Since the WES lights are embedded into the asphalt surface, our tests indicate the drivers will see them easier. We believe it will give them quicker notification of a problem on the track somewhere." Darby looked at the lights Thursday afternoon. "From what we can tell at this point, the lights are not located in an area where they would be an obstruction to the race cars," he said. "That was our primary concern."(ThatsRacin.com)(3-27-2003)

  • More seats in the works at Texas: Indianapolis Motor Speedway has more than 250,000 permanent seats and usually has crowds exceeding 300,000, dwarfing the 154,861 grandstand seats and crowds of 220,000 at Texas Motor Speedway. But TMS was built with expansion in mind with a 33,000-seat backstretch that could be constructed to match the 121,861-seat frontstretch that includes 194 luxury suites. The empty area in turns 2 and 3 also can be filled in to form a bowl. Total potential capacity: 400,000. "I don't know that it's pie in the sky. It is possible, but it requires mass transit and things of that nature," TMS executive vice president and general manager Eddie Gossage said. "Indianapolis can park only a handful of cars on their grounds. They've made it work with mass transit and shuttles and parking in people's yards -- all kinds of things. It works very well for them, so it just proves that it can be done." Gossage said he has spoken with officials at the Fort Worth Transportation Authority -- known as the T -- about busing and a possible rail line, which he compared to the Trinity Railway Express that stops at American Airlines Center in Dallas. Temporary grandstands, which have been erected for previous Winston Cup races, aren't in the speedway's future, Gossage said.(Fort Worth Star Telegram)(3-27-2003)

  • Texas Naming rights: Following in the footsteps of Speedway Motorsports facilities in Concord, NC, and Sonoma, CA, the naming rights for Texas Motor Speedway are for sale. The former Charlotte Motor Speedway sold its naming rights to Lowe's, the home improvement company, for $35 million over 10 years in 1999, and Sears Point Raceway is now Infineon Raceway after the semiconductor manufacturer agreed to a 10-year, $34.6 million deal last year. TMS is seeking a similar agreement, but no timetable has been set. The money would help TMS meet its budget, which would help the track keep ticket prices low and parking free for fans.(Fort Worth Star Telegram)(3-27-2003)

  • Trak Vak at Texas: Speedway officials and fans alike are hoping for sunny skies for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 race week at Texas Motor Speedway. But, if inclement weather intervenes, speedway officials are ready with a revolutionary track-drying vehicle, Trak Vak. Trak Vak, invented by Garland resident George Carter, will make its debut for this weeks Samsung/RadioShack 500 events. Trak Vak is a venture of Speedway Motorsports, Inc. and Trak Vak, Inc. Trak Vak utilizes the ability to remove water from damp speedway surfaces.. The dually truck chassis features a 27-horsepower motor powering a large vacuum with 12 pickup points located behind the vehicle's tires that remove moisture and deposit it in a 600-gallon holding tank. The diesel-powered Trak Vak is designed to operate at 60 mph, allowing quicker removal of moisture. "Our theory is to pick up as much water as possible," said Trak Vak inventor Carter. "Jet blowers attempt to evaporate the water from the speedway surface, our goal is to actually remove the water."
    "When inclement weather interferes with racing, our goal is to get the race cars back on the speedway as quickly as possible for our fans," said speedway general manager Eddie Gossage. "We are excited about the potential of Trak Vak, although we would prefer that it never leaves the pit area all race week." Trak Vak is a prototype introductory project with a long-range goal of producing a fleet of such vehicles that would be in attendance at all Speedway Motorsports, Inc. events. Carter is a professional inventor and race fan. Among his patented inventions is the Laser Tag game.. Much as Laser Tag has changed the entertainment business, Trak Vak may do the same for motorsports.(TMS PR), last I heard of this was in Feb 2000, see my Past News 2-9-2000 section, neither link in the story works any longer.(3-27-2003)

  • American Flags To Wave In Unision During Pre-Race Fans attending the Samsung/RadioShack 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race on Sunday, March 30 at Texas Motor Speedway will have the opportunity to participate in the pre-race activities while helping to honor the American Spirit. The first 100,000 fans inside the gates will receive a miniature American flag courtesy of Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse. During the pre-race activities fans will be encouraged to wave the flags in unison during the performance of God Bless America. The Derailers, recording artists for Sony Music Entertainment Inc. on their Lucky Dog Label, will perform the song.(TMS PR)(3-26-2003)

  • Free Internet Access at Texas: Texas Motor Speedway, in cooperation with Outback Telecom, will be offering complimentary wireless broadband Internet service to campers in the Workhorse Custom Chassis Infield Campground for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 week. Broadband Internet access will be available to a portion of the infield campground but will require an 802.11b (WiFi) enabled laptop or personal digital assistant (PDA) to access the network.. The WiFi device is available at most electronic retailers including RadioShack and a limited number will be available for sale at the Outback Telecom booth located in the infield.. For more information send an e-mail to raceisp@outbackwireless.com or call (972) 691-8009.(TMS PR)(3-26-2003)

  • New Caution Lights at Texas: In a continued commitment to improve driver safety, Texas Motor Speedway and System Electric Inc. of Fort Worth has developed and installed a unique new caution light system. The Warning Emergency System (WES) caution lights are imbedded in the asphalt at the base of the retaining walls in the speedway's four turns. The WES lights are available for use in this weekend's Samsung/RadioShack 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race and the O'Reilly 300 NASCAR Busch Series race should NASCAR choose to use them. The initial application installed WES lights in eight different locations around Texas Motor Speedway. Four sets of WES lights are located in turns one and two while an additional four sets are located in turns three and four. The WES light system supplements the speedway's existing caution light system. The WES lights are similar to airport runway lights. Each location provides a 15- foot long strip of LED lights that are six inches wide. Each 15-foot section includes a total of 180 LED lights. Should the WES lights prove successful, it is possible to install the lights all the way around the speedway surface. Further development may also allow them to be installed along the inside apron of the turns. Developing the WES lights were Dwayne Lyons, Electrical Engineer for System Electric; Wes Harris, Vice President of Development for Speedway Motorsports Inc.; Jim Stufflebeam, Director of Development for Texas Motor Speedway; and Mat Stolley, Director of Operations for Texas Motor Speedway.(TMS PR)(3-26-2003)

  • Recycling Program Launch at Texas, win Dale Jr stuff and help out: NASCAR fans have an opportunity to support the environment, as well as their favorite driver, during the Samsung/RadioShack 500 race week at Texas Motor Speedway. Coca-Cola, Anheuser-Busch, Texas Motor Speedway and the National Association of PET Container Resources (NAPCOR) are launching :Rev It Up & Recycle," a new program designed to encourage race fans to recycle plastic bottles and aluminum cans. Various methods for collecting plastic bottles and cans will be available throughout race weekend, including the use of 30 highly visible, NASCAR-themed kiosks along the main concourse and nine large recycling trailers located throughout the camping areas.. Crews will also be collecting cans and bottles from the grandstands following the Samsung/RadioShack 500. The multi-faceted program, which kicks off March 27, encourages campers to recycle for the chance to win Dale Earnhardt, Jr. merchandise and a VIP meet-and-greet with Earnhardt prior to the March 30 Samsung/RadioShack 500. A percentage of the recycling proceeds will go to the Texas Chapter of Speedway Children's Charities.(more info at the TMS site)(3-26-2003)

  • Security at Texas: Fans attending this weekend's RPM Week-Texas activities should allow extra time when entering the gates at Texas Motor Speedway. Security personnel will be inspecting all bags and coolers brought into the speedway. The speedway implemented extra security measures at all races since September 11, 2001.(TMS PR)
    AND On March 18, the eve of war, the Federal Aviation Administration imposed seven temporary flight restrictions, including a ban on all aircraft -- blimps, banner-towing planes -- above and three nautical miles around entertainment parks, like Disneyland, as well as sports stadiums or "major motor speedway" events that draw 30,000 fans or more. Helicopters will be allowed to transport race participants to and from Alliance Airport. The FAA ban authorizes certain aircraft to defend the airspace above the speedway if necessary, but it does not detail what aircraft that would be. Should an emergency occur during the race, Krey said authorities would implement an evacuation plan that has been in place since the track's opening and has been updated every year.(Fort Worth Star Telegram)(3-26-2003)

  • Not NASCAR but pretty interesting for local TX racers: Terry Dickerson can't think of a better way to open the season than with a big event. And he can't think of a bigger racing event in Texas to be associated with than the upcoming NASCAR Winston Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway. So Dickerson, the promoter at Lone Star Speedway in Kilgore, Texas, has come up with a one-of-a-kind promotion. On Lone Star's opening night Saturday, he will offer 24 drivers the chance to be part of the big weekend at TMS – even if it is in a support race for a support race. The top 24 finishers in Saturday's IMCA modified feature race at Lone Star will race in an IMCA support event for the O'Reilly World of Outlaws at the Texas Motor Speedway Dirt Track on March 28-29. The Winston Cup race will be held at TMS on March 30.(Dallas Morning News - may need to register to read)(3-22-2003)

  • Texas Scoring Tower Almost Done: Less than two months ago, the scoring tower located inside Turn Three at Texas Motor Speedway fell during high winds. On Thursday, work on building a new tower now located inside Turn Four is scheduled to be completed. A crane will raise the "topper" for the tower at approximately 9 a.m., weather permitting. Crews will attach the giant end piece in place to complete the tower. The estimated cost of building the new tower was approximately $250,000, and Thursday's fitting of the top piece will complete the construction in time for the NASCAR Winston Cup Series Samsung/RadioShack 500 race weekend March 27-30.(TMS PR)(3-21-2003)

  • Texas Testing this week and an announcement: on Wednesday, March 19th, there will be a special announcement regarding the upcoming Samsung/RadioShack 500 and O'Reilly 300 at Texas Motor Speedway. Teams have also scheduled final test sessions in preparation for Texas race week. Teams are scheduled for testing Monday-Wednesday, March 17-19. Drivers scheduled are as follows:
    Monday, March 17 - Busch Series:. Stanton Barrett. Tuesday and Wednesday, March 18 and 19:
    Winston Cup Drivers: #2-Rusty Wallace, #5-Terry Labonte, #29-Kevin Harvick, #30-Jeff Green, #83-Kerry Earnhardt, #88-Dale Jarrett, #75?-David Starr.
    Busch Series Drivers: Troy Cline, Mike Wallace, Stanton Barrett, Kevin Grubb, Lance Norick.(TMS PR)(3-17-2003)

  • The Rock race to Texas? The talk of Realignment 2004 and Beyond is weekly fodder for the gristmill as the tour visits the venues that make up the 2003 schedule. Darlington Raceway was a target to lose a date well before France dropped his date moving bomb in mid-January. While the history likely goes back at least 10 or more years, the talk seems to ebb and flow, but with Realignment 2004 on the table the talk was raised to a whole new level. Sources told teamfordracing.com during the Rockingham, NC race weekend that North Carolina Speedway was likely to loose a date, with Texas Motor Speedway the destination for the race as the France family works towards getting the Francis Ferko anti-trust/collusion trial settled; and that Darlington was rock solid with two dates for 2004. That talk seems to be a little more solid, or at least the Darlington aspect of that talk, as this weekend NASCAR men are spinning the virtues of two dates here in 2004. Taking the talk closer reality are claims by Darlington track officials to teamfordracing.com, this morning, that they are “very close” to extending their deal with the Dodge Dealers for sponsorship of this race beyond 2003, or when the current sponsorship contract is set to conclude. Darlington has a deal with Pepsi Co’s Mountain Dew product to sponsor the Southern 500, Darlington’s fall date, through 2004.(Ford Racing)(3-16-2003)

  • 400 Texas Tix Available: Fans still looking for a ticket to the sold-out Samsung/RadioShack 500 will now have one last chance. A block of approximately 400 tickets allotted to Fort Sill, Oklahoma has been released due to the recent deployment of troops. The tickets will go on sale Friday, March 14 at 9:00 a.m. The tickets are only available through the speedway ticket office and may be purchased at the ticket counter or by calling (817) 215-8500. In addition to the release of block tickets from Fort Sill, only 200 season tickets, ranging in price from $214-$360, remain for the 2003 season. Race fans can purchase three great weekends of racing and see not only the NASCAR Winston Cup race, but also two Indy Racing League events, a NASCAR Busch Series race and two NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races for less than they will pay for the one Winston Cup ticket to the ticket brokers. Season ticket holders also receive complimentary admission to Fandango2 on Thursday night, March 27 in the speedway frontstretch grandstand. Fandango2 will feature NASCAR Winston Cup drivers Michael Waltrip and Ken Schrader, along with a special guest, in a question-and-answer session with fans. Fox Sports' Mike Joy will host Fandango2.(TMS PR)(3-12-2003)

  • Texas sized promotion: Texas Motor Speedway Director of Tickets Kevin Camper has been promoted to Director of Business Development. Speedway vice president and general manager Eddie Gossage made the announcement today. Camper, a 1993 graduate of Liberty University, joined the speedway in August of 1996 as ticket manager. Prior to that, he served as season ticket coordinator for the Texas Rangers Baseball Club. He was promoted to Director of Tickets at Texas Motor Speedway in 2000. Camper has been instrumental in streamlining the camping and ticket sales operation, and he has provided creative new opportunities for fans that purchase single event or season tickets.(TMS PR)(2-28-2003)

  • Texas has special offer for Scouts: Texas Motor Speedway will continue a tradition started during its inaugural season of 1997 when it offers Boy and Girl Scout troops the opportunity to witness the O'Reilly 300 Busch Series race Saturday, March 29 at a special Scout Day ticket price. Scout troops and their leaders will be able to purchase advance tickets for the O'Reilly 300 for only $5.00 each. Those accompanying the Scout troops are eligible for a ticket price of $20 apiece with a limit of three for every uniformed Scout. All Scout Day tickets are subject to availability. Scout Day tickets are available at the special price by advance order only. Scout leaders must fill out a Scout Day ticket order form and return it with payment to the speedway prior to March 17. The Scout Day form is available at the Tickets link of the Texas Motor Speedway website, www.texasmotorspeedway.com or by calling (817) 215-8500.(TMS PR)(2-21-2003)

  • Texas Cup race sold out: Texas Motor Speedway recorded its earliest sell-out ever as the final tickets for individual seats to the March 30 Samsung/RadioShack 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race were sold to Jason Wargo of Alsip, IL shortly after noon on Tuesday. Frontstretch grandstand tickets still remain for the March 29 O'Reilly 300 NASCAR Busch Series race. Since opening seven years ago, Texas Motor Speedway has sold every seat in the 154,861-seat facility for its NASCAR Winston Cup event.. This is the earliest the event has ever sold-out.. Last year the event sold-out in late-February. A limited number of season tickets located on the frontstretch remain for all events and Gossage cautioned fans about going to ticket brokerage companies and scalpers for tickets. Season ticket holders also receive complimentary admission to Fandango2 on Thursday night, March 27 in the speedway frontstretch grandstand.. Fandango2 will feature NASCAR Winston Cup drivers Michael Waltrip and Ken Schrader, along with a special guest, in a question-and-answer session with fans.. Fox Sports' Mike Joy will host Fandango2. Infield standing-room only tickets for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 are on sale daily up to and including race day March 30. The Texas Motor Speedway staff is also contacting corporate clients that have bought large blocks of tickets in an effort to buy back any tickets in order to offer them to the public.(TMS PR)(2-20-2003)

  • Texas Scoring Tower Going Up and Tix: The scoring tower that recently fell in the infield at Texas Motor Speedway will be rebuilt and relocated to Turn Four. The 110-foot structure, weighing approximately 41,000 pounds, fell on Jan. 28 during high winds near the speedway. The estimated cost of building the new tower is approximately $250,000 and construction on the tower will be completed in time for the NASCAR Winston Cup Series Samsung/RadioShack 500 race weekend March 27-30. Individual tickets for the Samsung/RadioShack 500 are going fast and nearing a sellout. But, there is still an opportunity to get excellent front-stretch viewing for the O'Reilly Auto Parts Qualifying Day on Thursday, March 27 and Friday, March 28. General admission tickets, which are $10, are available at 900 O'Reilly Auto Parts stores across 16 states. All advance O'Reilly Auto Parts Qualifying Day tickets must be purchased at O'Reilly Auto Parts stores. The speedway will have general admission tickets, also good for both days, available at the gate for $15.(TMS PR)(2-12-2003)



    the toppled tower, image from TMS PR


  • Wind topples Texas Motor Speedway tower UPDATE will be rebuilt: A 110-foot scoring tower at Texas Motor Speedway fell to the ground Tuesday afternoon after a sudden gust of wind, a speedway spokesman said. No one was injured, and no events were under way at the track. The tower is one of two electronic scoring towers that keep track of each car's position during a race, speedway spokesman Gary Guehler said. Damage to the tower was estimated at $250,000 and there was no damage to the track, Guehler said.(Fort Worth Star Telegram)(1-28-2003)

    UPDATE: TMS general manager Eddie Gossage said a new scoring tower would be built to replace the one toppled by high winds on Tuesday inside Turn 3. Gossage doesn't know if it can be completed in time for the NASCAR weekend of March 27-30. "That's what our crew is trying to determine," he said. "We had a sign company out here this morning. They are going to let us know whether they can get all the electronics together. We can get the structure up, but can you get the electronics and all the pieces that go into making it? All these scoreboards are custom made." Gossage said the new tower would be placed inside Turn 4. He also said structural engineers are looking at the scoring tower in Turn 1 to make sure it isn't damaged.(Dallas Morning News - need to register for free to view/read)(1-31-2003)

  • Howie Long back at Texas Grand Marshal: Radio Shack spokesman Howie Long returns as the Grand Marshal for this year's Winston Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway, the Samsung/Radio Shack 500. Long served as Grand Marshal in 2002 but missed the race due to prior commitments after rain forced the postponement of the event.(Sheveprot Times)(1-30-2003)

  • Wind topples Texas Motor Speedway tower UPDATE: A 110-foot scoring tower at Texas Motor Speedway fell to the ground Tuesday afternoon after a sudden gust of wind, a speedway spokesman said. No one was injured, and no events were under way at the track. The tower is one of two electronic scoring towers that keep track of each car's position during a race, speedway spokesman Gary Guehler said. Damage to the tower was estimated at $250,000 and there was no damage to the track, Guehler said.(Fort Worth Star Telegram)(1-28-2003)

    UPDATE: TMS general manager Eddie Gossage said a new scoring tower would be built to replace the one toppled by high winds on Tuesday inside Turn 3. Gossage doesn't know if it can be completed in time for the NASCAR weekend of March 27-30. "That's what our crew is trying to determine," he said. "We had a sign company out here this morning. They are going to let us know whether they can get all the electronics together. We can get the structure up, but can you get the electronics and all the pieces that go into making it? All these scoreboards are custom made." Gossage said the new tower would be placed inside Turn 4. He also said structural engineers are looking at the scoring tower in Turn 1 to make sure it isn't damaged.(Dallas Morning News - need to register for free to view/read)(1-31-2003)

  • Camping at Texas: When fans arrive in March for RPM Week-Texas, they will see the sparkling new Workhorse Custom Chassis VIP Campground along Allison Drive at the north entrance to the Texas Motor Speedway. The new campground is currently being equipped with full electrical and water hookups for campers. The Workhorse Custom Chassis VIP Campground features 352 spots measuring 20' x 45' each on a paved lot. The camping spots are $600 for the season plus an additional $200 for the year for the hookups, which includes electric, water, and a coupon for one free stop by the waste truck for sewage each race week. Spots in the Workhorse Custom Chassis VIP Campground will go on sale at 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 5. Locations in the other Workhorse Custom Chassis outside reserved campgrounds, including the Lone Star Circle Reserved Campground ($300 for season) and Victory Circle Reserved Campground ($100 for RPM Week-Texas, March 27-30), Lone Star Circle Tent City ($75 for RPM Week-Texas), and Victory Circle Tent City ($50 for RPM Week-Texas), are also available. Unreserved camping will only be available on the west side of the speedway and is limited to 1,000 spots on a first come, first serve basis. For Texas Motor Speedway camping and ticket information, contact the speedway ticket hotline at (817 215-8500 or go online to www.texasmotorspeedway.com.(1-18-2002)

  • 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 - Texas Motor Speedway


DRIVER/TEAM NEWS

  • No Backup for Starr: David Starr will attempt to make his Winston Cup debut at Texas Motor Speedway in the #75 Chevy. Starr will race a new car that was purchased by his uncle, Mike Starr, who owns the Team Texas Driving School at TMS. Mike Starr bought the Winston Cup chassis from Larry McClure, owner of the #4 Kodak Monte Carlo [well actually a Pontiac Grand Prix, so Starr's Chevy is probably a 2002 which can still be used and raced] driven by Mike Skinner. Starr's engine is being leased from Richard Childress Racing. But it is the only car Starr will have this weekend. There is no backup, so keeping it intact is paramount for him to make Sunday's race. During test sessions last week at TMS, Starr, using a modified truck series engine, drove several laps around the 1.5-mile oval in less than 29.5 seconds [approx 183mph]. Starr was hoping to have NASA as a sponsor for his car. Mike Starr sent a formal proposal to NASA officials, but reduced the asking price for the one-race sponsor fee from $150,000 to $100,000. Even though that's not much by Winston Cup standards these days, it appears the NASA deal never came to fruition.(Dallas Morning News - may need to register to view/read)(3-28-2003)

  • #49 BAM Racing sponsor at Texas: One of the hottest groups in Texas music will be on the quarterpanels of the #49 BAM Racing Dodge this week in Texas Motor Speedway’s Samsung/Radio Shack 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race. The Derailers, which will appear in conjunction Sony Music Nashville, will be the group on the side of Ken Schrader’s car. The Derailers, formed by Tony Villaneuva and Brian Hofeldt from Oregon in 1993, is known a true "sound of Texas." It’s 1996 debut album, "Jackpot," began the band’s post-driving backbeat hammer-ringing Telecaster strum and steam whistle duet harmony - a sound right out of Texas. The feature band on the Sony Music Nashville Dodge, the Derailers will perform pre-race entertainment at the huge Texas Motor Speedway complex.(Williams Company PR)(3-25-2003)

  • Kerry Earnhardt hopes to make 2nd Cup start at Texas; Spencer in a 2nd team Busch car: FitzBradshaw Racing will field the # 83 Aaron’s Dream Machine Chevy in the Samsung/Radio Shack 500 on March 30, 2003 at Texas Motor Speedway. The car will be driven by Kerry Earnhardt. Earnhardt was slated to drive the #83 Aaron’s Dream Machine in select Winston Cup Series races during the 2002 season, however, rain cancelled qualifying for all events. Those were FitzBradshaw's first attempts in the Winston Cup Series and no owner points had been accumulated. “We’re excited about this race,” Earnhardt said. “We tried a couple times last year to make races in the Aaron’s Dream Machine, and each time we tried we got rained out. It was a pretty big joke around the garage.”
    “This is great for us,” FitzBradshaw co-owner Armando Fitz said. “We’re going to have two Busch Series cars competing in Texas, plus Kerry in the Aaron’s Dream Machine for the Cup race. We’re taking huge steps in the direction we need to in order to be a competitive team in NASCAR.” Earnhardt, who has tentative plans to run several more Winston Cup races this year, will be joined in the Texas Busch Series race by Jimmy Spencer, who will be piloting the #82 Jani-King Chevrolet for FitzBradshaw Racing.(FitzBradshaw Racing PR)(3-24-2003)

  • Petty to the hospital UPDATE 3: Kyle Petty has been transferred to a local Bristol hospital for further observation, Petty was awake and alert otherwise. This ends Petty's 40 race streak of not having an DNF-Did Not Finish.
    UPDATE: Winston Cup driver Kyle Petty was airlifted to Bristol Regional Medical Center for evaluation following a hard wreck on Lap 424 of 500 in Sunday's Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway. Ward Burton spun in Turn 3, hit Petty's No. 45 Dodge and Petty's car swung hard into the wall, driver's side first. Petty had to be assisted out of his car by medical personnel and went to the track's infield care center for initial evaluation. He appeared very groggy. Petty was awake and alert at the care center but was sent to the hospital for precautionary measures. Petty was expected to be released from the hospital later Sunday. "He just said he hurt all over," said Petty's crew chief, Steven Lane. "I think they are just going to take him for the sake of caution just to make sure he is OK. I hope that's all that it is. He took a hard lick."(ThatsRacin.com)(3-23-2003)
    UPDATE 2: Kyle Petty was treated and released from Bristol Regional Medical Center on Sunday night after a hard impact late in Sunday's race.(Roanoke Times)
    UPDATE 3: Kyle Petty returned home Sunday night following the Food City 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race. He is expected to be ready for this week’s events at Texas Motor Speedway. Petty was examined at Bristol (Tenn.) Regional following a crash Sunday, and was released. He will obviously follow up with a routine examination from his personal physician this week. "He’s very sore," said Steven Lane, crew chief for Petty’s #45 Georgia-Pacific Dodge. "He hit pretty hard, so you would expect that. But he should be ready to go at Texas this week."(Williams Company)(3-24-2003)

  • Testing at Texas Wednesday: Sunny weather at Texas Motor Speedway resulted in a flurry of on-track testing activity Wednesday as nine NASCAR Winston Cup and Busch Series teams prepared for the March 27-30 Samsung/RadioShack 500 race week. Former Texas NASCAR Winston Cup winners #5-Terry Labonte and #88-Dale Jarrett were joined on the 1.5-mile superspeedway by the Winston Cup teams of #2-Rusty Wallace, #29-Kevin Harvick, #83-Kerry Earnhardt and #?75-David Starr. Busch Series teams getting ready for the March 29 O'Reilly 300 included Steadman Marlin, Troy Cline and Lance Norick. Earnhardt and Cline tested the second-turn outside wall during the session. Earnhardt's Winston Cup car suffered extensive rear damage in the morning incident. Cline brushed the wall during the afternoon in his Busch machine. Neither driver was injured. The final day of testing leading into RPM Week-Texas will be staged Thursday with Harvick and Jarrett scheduled. The test sessions are private and are closed to the public.(TMS PR - no speeds reported)(3-20-2002)

  • Starr and Cup? David Starr said he is weighing his options for next season, including interest from several Winston Cup teams. Starr said it's possible he will return as the driver of the #75 Spears Manufacturing Chevy in the Craftsman Truck Series, but it's also possible he will accept an offer to move up to Busch or Winston Cup. "For now, I'm just focusing on finishing the season strong," Starr said. "After that I will go over some of the things that have been offered me. I've very fortunate to have the situation I have now, and I want to be sure I do the right thing."(Dallas Morning News)(11-10-2002)
    UPDATE: CTS driver [#75] David Starr plans to make his Winston Cup debut in the race at Texas Motor Speedway on March 30. "I can't wait," Starr said. "We are going to do a lot of testing at the track to make sure we'll be ready to go when it comes time to qualify." Starr will race a new Chevrolet Monte Carlo that was purchased by his uncle, Mike Starr, who owns the Team Texas Driving School at TMS. "We are going to do this the right way," Mike Starr said. "We are going to have the best engines and the best equipment possible. And I can tell you the pit crew won't be a bunch of guys from the driving school. It will be veteran NASCAR people." David Starr is the driver of the #75 Spears Manufacturing Chevrolet in the CTS. Starr has raced many times at TMS in truck and Busch Series events, but this will be his first attempt at a Winston Cup race. He said TMS officials plan to help them secure sponsorship for the event. TMS plans to have a news conference to announce Starr's plans.(Dallas Morning News - need to register to read)(1-22-2003)
    UPDATE 2: CTS driver, David Starr, will attempt to qualify for his first Winston Cup Series race, the Samsung/RadioShack 500 (March 30) at Texas Motor Speedway. "Wayne and Connie Spears gave me an opportunity of a lifetime to drive for a racing team that is well funded and that has all the great pieces to a championship caliber team," Starr says of his truck team. "We look to have a better year than we had last year. That being said, I think, if you ask every driver out there who is not part of the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, what their dreams and aspirations are, they would be lying to you if they didn't tell you they wanted to be in Winston Cup." Starr makes no bones about it. That is where he wants to be some day full time. So, with the truck series off the weekend of March 28-30, Starr is trying to make personal history. It marks the first time he is attempting to qualify for a Winston Cup race. As has been the case so many times in the past in the truck series, it is David's uncle, Mike Starr, who operates the Team Texas High Performance Driving School, who is prepping David's ride for his Winston Cup qualifying bid. "Ever since I was a kid and wanted to be a race car driver, I have thought of being a Winston Cup driver," Starr says. "Having the opportunity to participate among the 43 best race car drivers in the United States, or even the world, is just hard to describe what it means to me. It is a dream come true."(TMS PR)(3-14-2003)

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


PAINT SCHEME NEWS

  • #0 Special Scheme at Texas: The #0 NetZero High Speed Pontiac Grand Prix will make its debut at Texas Motor Speedway this weekend. The new paint scheme showcases NetZero’s HiSpeed Online Service.(NetZero Racing)(3-27-2003)

  • #17 Special Scheme at Texas: Matt Kenseth's #17 DEWALT team will have a different look this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. Smirnoff Ice will be on the hood and deck lid of the #17 Ford to kick-off a new partnership with the team. The crew will also be dressed in Smirnoff Ice uniforms. Smirnoff Ice will be the primary sponsor on Kenseth's car for seven races this season, starting with The Winston at Lowe's Motor Speedway in May.(DeWalt Racing)(3-27-2003)

  • New #88 Paint Scheme soon? UPDATE: supposedly in a few weeks, a new UPS logo will appear on the #88 Ford driven by Dale Jarrett. Supposedly after it is introduced it will run the remainder of the 2003 season(3-13-2003)
    UPDATE - UPS To Change Logo: United Parcel Service isn't giving up its trademark color, but the box in its logo is being shipped out. A UPS Boeing 767 will touch down at Louisville International Airport this morning bearing the company's first new logo since 1961. Gone will be the string bow atop a yellow-and-brown shield. A more contemporary look will incorporate the letters UPS in a brown shield outlined in yellow and gold. An accompanying tag line will read "Synchronizing the World of Commerce." Work on the logo, the fourth in UPS' 95 years, has taken about a year, said John Beystehner, senior vice president of worldwide sales and marketing, who was formerly based in Louisville as vice president of airline operations. The transition to the new look will take years more. The 767 arriving today is one of the first of more than 88,000 vehicles, including 257 large jet aircraft, that will get the new design. About 40 planes will be repainted this year, but the air fleet changeover won't be complete until 2008. Ground vehicles will be changed, too, mostly following their normal three-year painting schedule. The logo also will appear on 1,700 facilities around the world, 70,000 drop-off and retail access points, more than 1 million uniform pieces and more than 3 billion packages annually. The logo, designed by Future Brand of New York City, also will appear on the newly branded Mail Boxes Etc., which next month will become The UPS Store. The logo also will be seen Sunday on the uniform and car of NASCAR racer Dale Jarrett, Beystehner said.(Courier-Journal and the UPS Site), on Friday there will be a UPS Announcement at Texas Motor Speedway.(3-25-2003)




    the new logo, as seen on the UPS Main page


  • Kenseth and Smirnoff Ice? UPDATE: hearing #17-Matt Kenseth will race either 8 Cup or 8 BGN races with Smirnoff Ice as the sponsor, the BGN thing makes sense, since he is running 15 races with Bayer/Alka Seltzer, not sure about the Cup part of the rumor.(1-25-2003)
    UPDATE: hearing this is for 8 Cup races, with at least one Richmond race to be part of it.(1-27-2003)
    UPDATE 2: Smirnoff Ice Triple Black will sponsor Roush Racing driver Matt Kenseth's #17 Ford in a limited program of 2003 Cup races, beginning with The Winston all-star race in May at Lowe's Motor Speedway. The program includes at least co-primary sponsorship of Kenseth's Ford Taurus, whose five wins in 2002 led the series, for eight races and secondary status for the balance of the season. The partnership includes driver appearances, the use of show cars and image rights, a large hospitality program and an extensive social responsibility agenda. A Smirnoff spokesperson said an advertising program was in the works featuring Kenseth, who said that was one of the "coolest" aspects of the program. Kenseth will drive the Smirnoff Ice car at The Winston, Pepsi 400 at Daytona, Brickyard 400, Southern 500, Richmond (Sept), Talladega (Sept) and Atlanta (Oct). The race at Texas on March 30 is a co-primary event with Dewalt Tools.(NASCAR.com, see an image of the car there - do NOT email it to me)(2-8-2003)

  • PE special schemes Petty Enterprises will run special paint schemes at Texas on the #43 and #45 Dodges. The schemes are: #43 Pillsbury Dodge and #45 Brawny Dodge.





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


SOME NOTES and NEWS

  • Jeff Gordon fact: #24-Jeff Gordon has won on 19 of the 23 tracks currently [and also at North Wilkesboro which is no longer active] on the NASCAR Winston Cup schedule. Texas, Chicagoland, Phoenix and Homestead-Miami are the only tracks he has yet to visit victory lane in a Winston Cup car.(3-27-2003)

  • Texas Fun Facts: Eight Texas Stadiums will fit in the infield of Texas Motor Speedway. Texas Motor Speedway has enough permanent lighting to illuminate 11 NFL football stadiums. If all the hamburgers served in one year at the speedway were stacked, it would be taller than a 74-story building.(Foyt Racing)(3-27-2003)

  • More things found reading PR's: #41-Casey Mears is the only Raybestos Rookie to complete all 6 races this season without a DNF (did not finish). This weekend's race at Texas will mark Bill Elliott's 702nd career Winston Cup Series start. If he continues to start every race of the 2003 season, Elliott will surpass Bobby Allison to rank sixth on the all-time start list in the August race at Michigan Int'l Speedway. Bill Elliott is scheduled to drive the #9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge that sat on the outside pole at Atlanta this year, and qualified fourth and finished 11th in the June 2002 race at Michigan.(PR's)(3-27-2003)

  • Some Texas Facts: #5-Terry Labonte has five top-10 finishes at Texas in the six NASCAR Winston Cup events held at the track. One of those top 10s was a victory in the 1999 event “ his last victory. His average finish of 7.0 at TMS is the best among drivers with at least five starts at the track. #6-Mark Martin is the only driver to qualify in the top 10 in all six previous NASCAR Winston Cup races at TMS. #88-Dale Jarrett, the 2001 winner at Texas, has led a total of 406 laps at the track, more than any other driver. In six years there have been six different winners: Jeff Burton in 1997, Mark Martin in '98, Terry Labonte in '99, Dale Earnhardt Jr. in 2000, Dale Jarrett in ˜01 and Matt Kenseth last year.(NASCAR PR)(3-26-2003)

  • Contingency Plans for travel and TV in case of war: With the country on the verge of war, NASCAR teams and officials are considering contingency plans for travel to Fort Worth, Talladega and Los Angeles in the coming weeks. "I know that became a concern when we went to Dover last year, and I'm sure at some of these tracks there will be different restrictions that come up," Robbie Loomis, Jeff Gordon's crew chief, said. "It's a pretty stressful time on all the folks in the military and their families right now." Fox is expected to put Winston Cup races on its FX cable if or when war begins.(Winston Salem Journal)(3-14-2003)
    UPDATE: Jim Hunter, NASCAR vice president of communications, also an Army veteran, addressed the topic of war and racing on Friday. "I have always felt that one of Bill France's quotes was right on target on this subject," Hunter said. "I can remember people asking 'Bill, who are your fans?' And he would say, 'I'll tell you who our fans are. They are the kind of people that win wars for you.' And never has that been more true than today." Hunter said NASCAR has monitored the expected showdown with Iraq for the last several months and has worked through several scenarios which includes postponing an event if necessary. "I don't really want to speculate but certainly that would be an option and we've done it before," Hunter said. "Just to arbitrarily do that, no. It depends on the circumstances, and what is best under those circumstances, not only what is best for the racing community but what is best for the country."(Daytona Beach News Journal)(3-16-2003)


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