THE NEXT Nextel Cup RACE
the Jayski site is housed at:
NEWS, STATS and INFO
THE RACE: Coca Cola 600
Nextel Cup Race #12 of 36 for the 2005 season
Updated: often, leading up to the race
- Race: Sunday, May 29, 2005 in Concord, NC
- TV: FOX 5:00pm/et
- Pre-Race Show: Fox - 5:00pm/et - with hosts Chris Myers and Jeff Hammond
- Green Flag: around 5:45pm/et
- Race Re-Air: on Speed Channel
Wednesday, June 1 [Fast Forward, 2-hour recap] at 5:00pm/et;
Thursday, June 2 [Replay] at 3:00pm/et;
Saturday, June 4 [Fast Forward, 2-hour recap] at 3:00am/et;
- Pay Per View/NASCAR In Demand: www.indemand.com
- Announcers: Mike Joy, Darrell Waltrip, Larry McReynolds
- Pit Reporters: Dick Berggren, Matt Yocum, Steve Byrnes
- Hollywood Hotel: Chris Myers and Jeff Hammond
- TV Listings and Info:
Jayski's TV Listings Page
NASCAR on TV
- Purse/Race Awards: $6,279,649 (was $6,201,379 in 2004)
- Practices: Thursday, May 26, 3:00 - 5:00pm/et; Saturday, May 28, 3:30 - 4:15pm/et
- Happy Hour Practice: Saturday, May 28, 5:10 - 5:45pm/et on TV-FX - tape delay 5:30pm/et
- Qualifying Draw: Thursday, May 26, 2:00pm/et
- Qualifying: 2 laps for positions 1-42 and 43 [past champ or fastest left] if open, Thursday, May 26 at 7:10pm/et, TV-Speed Channel, re-air at 2:00pm/et on Friday, May 27th; and 12:00am/et on Saturday, May 28th AND live via radio at PRN Radio and XM Satellite NASCAR Radio.
- Impound? cars will NOT be impounded for this race after qualifying, see rules below.
- NASCAR Online will have live lap-by-lap coverage of Nextel Cup qualifying via the web (NOTE: this is a paid subscription service).
GOODYEAR TIRE NOTES
Goodyear Eagle Speedway Radials
Codes: Left-side -- D-6852; Right-side -- D-6876
Circumference: Left-side -- 87.4 in.; Right-side -- 88.7 in.
Estimated Pit Window: Every 60-65 laps, based on fuel mileage.
Number of Tires:
Nextel Cup: Left-side -- 1,500 Right-side -- 1,500
Busch Series: Left-side -- 550 Right-side -- 550
Technical Inspection Inflation:
Left Front -- 30 psi
Left Rear -- 30 psi
Right Front -- 50 psi
Right Rear -- 47 psi
Minimum Recommended Inflation:
Left Front -- 25 psi
Left Rear -- 25 psi
Right Front -- 50 psi
Right Rear -- 46 psi
Notes: Both the NASCAR Nextel Cup and Busch Series will run the same tire codes this weekend . . . it is the same tire set-up that was run by Cup and Truck Series teams last weekend at the track . . . 2005 is the first year that Goodyear has brought this specific combination of left- and right-side tires to Charlotte . . . this is the only track at which NASCAR teams will run this right-side tire code (D-6876) this season, though the left-side code (D-6852) will be run at California, Michigan, Chicago, and Kansas . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners in their tires at Charlotte . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.
Goodyear Quote -- Mark Keto, Lead Engineer, Stock Car Racing: "We originally tested at Lowes Motor Speedway with Bobby Labonte and Joe Nemechek last October and developed a new speedway tire set-up for 2005. It features a new, softer compound on both sides, and was developed for Lowes, Fontana, Chicago, Kansas City, Michigan and Kentucky. When we learned of the track grinding that took place, we had to test again in March of this year and develop a new set-up specifically for Lowes."
RACE BONUS INFO
- The NASCAR Nextel Cup Leader Bonus is $90,000 at Lowe's Motor Speedway for leading the points and winning the race. 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.
2005 NASCAR Nextel Cup Leader Bonus Winners:
#48-Jimmie Johnson, Las Vegas, 3/13/2005, $30,000
- MBNA Mid-Race Leader Award: The MBNA Mid-Race Leader Award is worth $10,000 to any eligible NASCAR Nextel Cup driver who leads a race at the halfway mark and displays the MBNA Mid-Race Leader Award decal on their race car. An additional $5,000 is earned if that driver also wins the race. If the race-win bonus is not earned, the $5,000 rolls into the next week’s award. Eligible drivers earn two points for winning the MBNA Mid-Race Leader Award and another point if they also go on to win the race. The driver who earns the most points during the season will win the MBNA Mid-Race Leader Award Championship.
Bonus for leading at halfway and winning at Lowe's Motor Speedway: $5,000
Winners for 2005 so far:
Daytona: #20-Tony Stewart, $10,000
California: #01-Joe Nemechek, $10,000
Las Vegas: #97-Kurt Busch, $10,000
Atlanta: #16-Greg Biffle, $10,000
Bristol: #2-Rusty Wallace, $10,000
Martinsville: #20-Tony Stewart, $10,000
Texas: #16-Greg Biffle, $45,000*
Phoenix: #97-Kurt Busch, $15,000*
Talladega: #24-Jeff Gordon, $15,000*
Darlington: #16-Greg Biffle, $15,000*
Richmond: #9-Kasey Kahne, $15,000*
(* won race and bonus)
NOTE: the award goes to the eligible driver leading on the 5th consecutive green lap following a mid-race caution if one occurs.
#48-Jimmie Johnson and #29-Kevin Harvick are not on the program.
Capital One does Lowe's Credit card and doesn't wish to have MBNA on the #48
The #29 has the GM Card (Household Bank) as an associate sponsor on the B-post.
MBNA Mid-Race Leader Award Standings:
Greg Biffle, 8
Kurt Busch, 5
Tony Stewart, 4
Jeff Gordon, 3
Kasey Kahne, 3
Joe Nemechek, 2
Rusty Wallace, 2
WEATHER, TV/RADIO COVERAGE
LOCAL NEWS, TRACK/FAN INFO
IN-CAR AUDIO SITES
Fans Can Online
looks like this is all that there is out there now....
QUALIFYING, PRACTICE and RESULTS
news and links
- Johnson wins wreckfest at LMS: #48-Jimmie Johnson passed #18-Bobby Labonte at the line by half of a car in a wild Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway for his third straight Coca-Cola 600 win, an all-time record. The race lasted 5 hours, 13 minutes and 56 seconds [the record is 5 hours, 34 minutes, 6 seconds], had an ALL-TIME NASCAR Grand National/Winston Cup/Nextel Cup race record for cautions with 22 cautions, 18 for wrecks, 1 for an engine and 3 for debris for 103 laps. Labonte finished 2nd after started dead last when the team changed the transmission for the start of the race and was a lap down and got a lucky dog lap back in the race, followed by #99-Edwards, #19-Mayfield and #12-Newman. Nice top-10's by #1-Martin Truex Jr. and the new 50 year-old #49-Ken Schrader who finished 9th.
For race results, see Jayski's Coca-Cola 600 Race Results/Awards page.(5-29-2005)
- NASCAR Nextel Cup Drivers Points after Charlotte - 12 of 36 races
#48-Jimmie Johnson, 1747
#16-Greg Biffle, 1676, -71
#38-Elliott Sadler, 1542, -205
#12-Ryan Newman, 1530, -217
#24-Jeff Gordon, 1516, -231
#20-Tony Stewart, 1488, -259
#29-Kevin Harvick, 1485, -262
#99-Carl Edwards, 1459, -288
#42-Jamie McMurray, 1451, -296
#97-Kurt Busch, 1441, -306
The top 16 in drivers points are still under 400 points back and in the Chase.
For points see Jayski's Drivers/Owners Points after Charlotte page.(5-29-2005)
- Back to Back winners of the Coca-Cola 600: #48-Jimmie Johnson won his 3rd straight Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway, a new record, the six other times the race was won two times in a row:
Jeff Gordon, 1997-1998
Dale Earnhardt, 1992-1993
Darrell Waltrip, 1988-1989
Neil Bonnett, 1982-1983
Darrell Waltrip, 1978-1979
Buddy Baker, 1972-1973
- Coca-Cola 600 Notes:
• Jimmie Johnson won the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, scoring his 16th NASCAR NEXTEL Cup
victory in his 123rd career start.
• Johnson became the first driver to score three straight Coca-Cola 600 victories. It was Johnson’s fourth victory
and seventh finish better than seventh in eight races at Lowe’s.
• It is Johnson’s second victory in 2005. He also won at Las Vegas in March.
• Johnson remained first in the NASCAR NEXTEL CUP point standings, 71 ahead of second-place Greg Biffle.
• Johnson won the $90,000 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Leader Bonus for winning the race and leading the point
standings. He also won it at Las Vegas, winning $30,000. The bonus will roll-back to $10,000 at Dover.
• Johnson led just three times for 11 laps including a last lap lead change - the second time in 2005 that there has been
a lead change on the final lap. Carl Edwards passed Johnson on the final lap at Atlanta in March to score his careerfirst
• Johnson scored his third straight victory at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Fred Lorenzen is the only other driver to do
win three straight here.
• Johnson has scored nine top-10 finishes in 12 races this season, more than any other driver.
• Johnson scored the 12th victory for car owner Rick Hendrick at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, the most of any owner.
This was Hendrick’s 135th victory as a car owner and fifth in 12 races this season.
• This marked the sixth victory for Chevrolet in 2005.
• The 21 lap leaders in the 2005 Coca-Cola 600 is a record for this event. The most leaders in a NASCAR NEXTEL
Cup race is 26 at Talladega set July 1986 and April 2001.
• The 22 caution periods in the 2005 Coca-Cola 600 is an all-time record in a NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race.
• Bobby Labonte (second) posted his 11th top-five finish in 25 races at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Labonte scored his
first top-five finish since he finished third at Pocono in June 2004. He climbed from 31st to 24th in the NASCAR
NEXTEL Cup point standings.
• Carl Edwards (third) posted a top-five finish in his first race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. He scored his fifth top-10
finish in 12 races in 2005. Edwards has scored 10 top-10 finishes in 25 career NASCAR NEXTEL Cup races. He
climbed from 13th to eighth in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup point standings.
• Jeremy Mayfield (fourth) posted his seventh top-10 finish in 23 race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. He scored his
second top-10 finish in 2005.
• Ryan Newman (fifth) scored his fourth top-10 finish in nine races at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Newman has scored
six top-10 finishes in 2005. He climbed from seventh to fourth in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup point standings.
• Mark Martin (28th) ended a 33-race streak of running at the finish that began at Michigan last June.
• Six of the top-10 positions in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup point standings changed at Lowe’s Motor Speedway.
• Jeff Gordon (30th) posted his fourth DNF in 2005. No other driver in the top-10 in the point standings has more
than two. Gordon dropped from third to fifth in the point standings.
• Kurt Busch (43rd) posted his second DNF in 2005. This was the third time in his career that he finished 43rd in a race.
He finished 43rd in both races at Michigan in 2001. Busch dropped from fifth to 10th in the NASCAR NEXTEL CUP
standings. He holds a 47-race streak of ranking among the top 10 since Rockingham in February 2004.
• Martin Truex Jr. led four laps, the first laps led in a NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race.
• Ricky Rudd led one lap in the 2005 Coca-Cola 600, his first lap led since Kansas in October 2004.
• Looking ahead to the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup.... 16 drivers remain within 400 points of current
point leader Jimmie Johnson.(NASCAR Statistical Services)(5-29-2005)
- Rumblings - Lowe's Motor Speedway:
We ran 400 laps tonight at Lowe's Motor Speedway, and the winner wasn't decided till the last turn of the last lap! Jimmie Johnson passed Bobby Labonte on the outside coming off turn 4 for the final time and pulled off the three-peat tonight in the Coca-Cola 600. Johnson came from 3rd in the five-lap shootout after a late race red flag to get his second victory of the year (he won at Las Vegas in March), the 16th of his Nextel Cup career (he's solo in 40th place on the all-time win list), and his 4th win in the last 5 events at "his house".
This was win #135 for Hendrick Motorsports (their fifth of 2005) and was worth $470,091 from the over $6.3M in posted awards.
Set a bunch of records lately. We had a race record for leaders (21), a Cup record for cautions (22), and a world record for the use of the word "levigate". Hopefully we won't threaten those last two marks anytime in the near future. Sterling Marlin hit it on the head.....he can thank NASCAR for his being involved in the wreck that took out two of the Ganassi cars. Surely we've never been heard to utter "they make 'em up as they go along", have we?
Bobby Labonte (2nd) had his best finish since he was the runner-up at Martinsville in April of 2004. His Top-5 finish gives us 24 drivers to
score that mark this season....last year we had 31 drivers grab a T-5.
Carl Edwards (3rd) had his best finish since he won at Atlanta in March.
Martin Truex Jr (7th) had his career-best finish tonight. His previous best was 21st at Talladega earlier this month. His Top-10 finish makes 34 drivers to garner a Top-10 this season....last year we had 39 of 'em.
Dale Jarrett (8th) had his best finish since he was 5th at Bristol in April.
Jeff Green (11th) had his best finish since he was 7th at Martinsville last October.
Kevin Lepage (12th) had his best finish since he was 9th at Daytona in February.
Mike Bliss (15th) had his best finish since he was 12th at Fontana in February.
Mike Wallace (16th) had his best finish since he was 7th at Richmond last September.
Kyle Petty (17th) had his best finish since he was 8th at Bristol in April.
Bill Elliott (20th) had his best finish since he was 9th at the Brickyard last August.
STREAKIN....Ryan Newman has 3 Top-5's in a row. Greg Biffle has 3 Top-10's in a row.
This Week's Elevator....UP: Operator of the Week is a tie between Bobby Labonte (+32) and Jeremy Mayfield (+32), followed by Kevin Lepage (+31), Jeff Green (+28 ), Greg Biffle (+27), Mike Wallace (+26), Kyle Petty (+20), and Joe Nemechek (+20). DOWN: The Big Dropper was Matt Kenseth (-34), followed by Jeff Gordon (-28 ), Jimmy Spencer (-25), Kasey Kahne (-22), and Johnny Sauter (-21). Almost a third of the field active in the "Shaft" tonight.
Martin Truex Jr led tonight for the first time in his NEXTEL Cup career. Bill Elliott led tonight for the first time since he led twice for 26 laps
at Texas in April of '04. Ricky Rudd led tonight for the first time since he led once for 2 laps at Kansas last October. We've had 40 different drivers lead a lap this season....last year we had 50 different leaders.
Jimmie Johnson padded his points lead tonight....it's back up to 71 markers over Greg Biffle. We also lopped another three drivers from our "Stayin' Alive" line....it's now 16. The low-water mark this year was 15 when we left Darlington a couple weeks ago.
Bobby Labonte (31st to 24th) made the best move forward in the points this weekend, while Kurt Busch (5th to 10th) and Ricky Rudd (27th to 32nd) fell the most spots.
Our "locked-in" list (the Top-35 in Owner Points) appears to be stabilized as Jason Leffler (by virtue of missing this week's event) is now 143 points out of 35th on the Owner Points list....and that's gonna take a good two to three races (in all probability) to make up.(Stock Car Fans)(5-29-2005)
- The Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway:
The UNOFFICIAL Top Ten (start pos in parens), lap leaders, cars out, cautions and some notes
after 400 of 400 laps:[the race is now official]
car#, driver, starting spot, laps led
#48-Johnson (5)(11 laps led)
#18-Labonte (34)(10 lap led)
#99-Edwards (12)(10 laps led)
#12-Newman (1/2)(43 laps led)
#1-Truex Jr. (4 laps led)
#49-Schrader (21)(6 laps led)
#2-Walllace (20)(15 laps led)
- Cars on the lead lap: 20 (of 43 starters)
- Off track/out of race (13):
- Laps Leaders Unofficial (21 with 37 lead changes):
#12-Newman (43, halfway);
#1-Truex Jr. (4);
#25-Vickers (98 most led);
New Record....most leaders
- Lap leaders: #12-Newman pole; #12-Newman 1-9; #24-Gordon 10-16; #5-Busch 17-59; #48-Johnson 60-61; #77-Kvapil 62; #15-Waltrip 63; #41-Mears 64; #45-Petty 65; #1-Truex Jr. 66-69; #24-Gordon 70-94; #9-Kahne 95; #5-Busch 96-107; #48-Johnson 108-115; #25-Vickers 116; #49-Schrader 117-122; #44-Labonte 123-139; #21-Rudd 140; #77-Kvapil 141-162; #25-Vickers 163-193; #12-Newman 194-227; #24-Gordon 228-234; #2-Wallace 235-249; #91-Elliott 250-262; #38-Sadler 363-266; #24-Gordon 267-273; #25-Vickers 274; #24-Gordon 275-276; #25-Vickers 277-290; #9-Kahne 291-300; #25-Vickers 301-351; #24-Gordon 352; #16-Biffle 353; #99-Edwards 354-356; #18-Labonte 357; #99-Edwards 358-364; #01-Nemechek 365-390; #18-Labonte 391-399; #48-Johnson 400
Cautions: 22 for 103 laps
BREAKS the ALL-TIME NASCAR Cup Series [since 1949 - was 20 at Bristol] and track/event record for most cautions [was 14], the record for laps at LMS is 113 in May 1980
these are approx. caution laps....
Caution 22 - Laps 392 - 395: #01-Nemechek while leading cut down a tire and spun into the wall, #22-Wimmer also got into the wall. Red Flag is out as of 10:38pm/et to allow the track workers to clean the track.
Caution 21 - Laps 380 - 386: #91-Elliott got tagged by #25-Vickers, with Elliott spinning in turn 1, #38-Sadler hit collecting Vickers, spinning Vickers who collected #29-Harvick, #6-Martin, and #24-Gordon.
Caution 20 - Laps 368 - 372: #07-Blaney stopped on the apron near pit road entrance.
Caution 19 - Laps 357 - 361: #9-Kahne lost a right fron tire and tore the fender off.
Caution 18 - Laps 308 - 311: #21-Rudd loses an engine
Caution 17 - Laps 290 - 292: #07-Blaney spun thru the infield grass.
Caution 16 - Laps 267 - 269: Debris in turn 3 and 4, #24-Gordon hit the debris.
Caution 15 - Laps 247 - 253: DEI wreck - #8-Earnhardt Jr. got into #15-Waltrip, #17-Kenseth had no place to go and caught the #15 car. #44-Labonte also was involved and has a lot of damage. #12-Newman also involved and has front end damage. The #15 and #17 have a lot of damage, #8 has damage and is in the garage but may be able to get back on the track.
Caution 14 - Laps 240 - 242: #42-McMurray spun off turn 4, and drove thru the infield grass.
Caution 13 - Laps 235 - 237: #7-Gordon got loose in turn 4, spun and backed lightly into the wall.
Caution 12 - Laps 228 - 230: #42-McMurray spun off turn 2, didn't hit anything. #7-Gordon got a lap back the hard way, by racing and is now on the lead lap.
Caution 11 - Laps 217 - 224: #41-Mears got hit by #1-Truex Jr. off turn 1 and 2. Mears spun and hit the wall, #40-Marlin went low, but Mears came down and Marlin just clipped Mears and Marlin hit the turn 2 wall.
Caution 10 - Laps 210 - 213: #77-Kvapil slapped the turn 4 wall when he got high, the impact pushed the fender int othe tire which cut and caused Kvapil to slap the turn 1 wall.
Caution 9 - Laps 201 - 204: #21-Rudd got into #22-Wimmer, who spun off turn 4, #40-Marlin drove down pit road to avoid hitting Wimmer.
Caution 8 - Laps 163 - 167: #97-Busch wrecked again, this time in turn 4, should be done for the night now.
Caution 7 - Laps 151 - 154: #38-Sadler got loose off turn 4 and spun, sliding thru the infield grass and ended up on pit road.
Caution 6 - Laps 140 - 146: #09-Sauter lost a right front tire and smacked the turn 3 wall and took the car to the garage.
Caution 5 - Laps 115 - 121: a piece of the track or debris embeded into the left valence of #24-Gordon's car, looks like the problem in the entrance of turn 1.
Caution 4 - Laps 102 - 107: #23-Skinner lost an engine and slowed, with #50-Spencer spinning and hitting the inside wall off turn 2, also #7-Gordon and #10-Riggs spun. #15-Waltrip has front end damage.
Caution 3 - Laps 94 - 97: Debris on the track in turn 1
Caution 2 - Laps 11 - 14: #97-Busch lost it in turn two and backed into the turn 2 wall. Says he got into liquid.
Caution 1 - Laps 7 - 9: #1-Truex Jr. got high and slapped the turn 1 wall, but drove on.
- Who got a lap back on each caution at Charlotte: The Lucky Dog Pack: (and their finish)
(FOX calls it 'the Free Pass Car', NBC calls it the Lucky Dog - which I prefer)
Caution 22: no lucky dog when 10 laps or less are left
Caution 21: #2-Wallace, 10th
Caution 20: #88-Jarrett, 8th
Caution 19: #25-Vickers [who had pitted before the caution], 31st DNF
Caution 18: #7-Gordon, 27th
Caution 17: #12-Newman, 5th
Caution 16: #37-Lepage, 12th
Caution 15: #37-Lepage (still 1 lap down), 12th
Caution 14: #37-Lepage (still 2 laps down), 12th
Caution 13: #45-Petty, 17th
Caution 12: #45-Petty (still a lap down), 17th
Caution 11: #4-Wallace, 16th
Caution 10: #31-Burton, 22nd
Caution 9: #91-Elliott, 20th
Caution 8: #41-Mears, 34th
Caution 7: #8-Earnhardt Jr., 33rd
Caution 6: #22-Wimmer, 23rd
Caution 5: #01-Nemechek, 18th
Caution 4: #18-Labonte, 2nd
Caution 3: #0-Bliss, 15th
Caution 2: none, no one a lap down
Caution 1: none, no one a lap down
See past races, rules, news and who has used the most Lucky Dog passes on my
Lucky Dog page.
- RACE/PIT NOTES: (as noted heard on TV or Radio)
---- It was reported after the race that Terry Labonte was released from the local hospital and is ok. Labonte was transported to Carolinas Medical Center for further evaluation. He was later released after having one of his feet examined.
---- on lap 366, #20-Stewart made an unscheduled pit stop with damage to the left front when he and #88-Jarrett got together.
---- green flag pit dtops for the leaders occurred in the lap 352-355 range, then the caution came out with half the drivers on the lead lap and the others already piited, messing up the running order.
---- #88-Jarrett had to pit on lap 332 for a loose wheel, the wheel was cracked, Jarrett lost a lap.
---- #41-Mears is back on the track after the team made repairs and is 62 laps down.
---- #9-Kahne is reporting his power is down.
---- FOX reported around lap 295 that Terry Labonte had been transported to a local hospital for observation.
---- on lap 288, #21-Rudd is down a cylinder
---- on lap 288, #5-Busch is down a cylinder
---- on lap 271, #8-Earnhardt Jr. is back on the track after the team made repairs, he is 23 laps down.
---- on lap 258, #12-Newman made another pit stop and goes a lap down.
---- #77-Kvapil is back on the track after the team made repairs, he is 23 laps down.
---- during the 13th caution, leader #24-Gordon made a pit stop. Many drivers out of sync.
---- during the 12th caution, #12-Newman and #29-Harvick were the only top-10 drivers to make pit stops.
---- during the 8th caution, there was a small fuel fire in the pit stall of #41-Mears, the fire was put out with no injuries.
---- on lap 153, #18-Labonte is reporting brake problem as his brake pedal sometimes is going to the floor, if he taps it, the brakes come back.
---- during the 6th caution, #38-Sadler and #17-Kenseth made contact on pit road, with the #38 getting some front end damage and made a 2nd pit stop to make repairs.
---- on lap 144, during the 6th caution, #97-Busch came back on the track after the team made repairs to the car after the lap 11 wreck.
---- on lap 127, #2-Wallace got loose and went up the track in turn 4 and lost a bunch of spots
---- during the 4th caution, track workers did some work on the track.
---- while running 2nd, #24-Gordon came into put during the 4th caution with a right rear tire going down.
---- many cars on the tail end of the lead lap and a lap or more down, made pit stops during the 4th caution, including #8-Earnhardt Jr. and #91-Elliott.
---- all the lead lap rivers came into pit during the 3rd caution
---- on lap 83, #45-Petty and #41-Mears made unscheduled pit stops.
---- many green flag pit stops occurred around lap 60, during which #50-Spencer and #37-Lepage were penalized for speeding exiting pit road.. #09-Sauter lost a lap when the team left a lug nut off and had to make a 2nd pit stop.
---- during the 2nd caution, #41-Mears came to pit and the team raised the hood as the motor is running hot; #7-Gordon is reportedly leaking fluid and was black flagged to come to the pits and have it checked out.
---- Pole sitter, #12-Ryan Newman exercised the option a pole sitter has amd started on the outside pole at the start of the race.
---- To the BACK: : #18-Labonte [transmission change];
- Race Coverage of the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on Sunday, May 29, 2005.
TV: FX at 5:00pm/et [green flag around 5:45pm/et].
Radio: PRN Radio and XM Satellite NASCAR Radio
Internet: NASCAR.com [Pit Command/Trackside - paid]
Jayski: on my Jayski's Semi-Live Race Coverage/Narrative Page.
Race Re-Air: Speed Channel, Thursday, June 2nd at 3:00pm/et
- Newman's team may change thr engine: from a Clear!Blue - Dodge Charger quotes PR:
MATT BORLAND (Crew chief No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger) COMMENT ON POSSIBLE ENGINE CHANGE FOR SUNDAY'S 600:
"Ryan felt a vibration (in Happy Hour). We don't know if it was the engine tires or what. It got better afterwards. Usually it doesn't get better. I wouldn't take a chance on a 300-mile race. Usually if the engine is vibrating it's going to go and it's going to go pretty soon. They've torn everything down and everything looks as good as normal. We're still looking. By then (tomorrow) we'll either change it or give it a blessing and send it on its way." NOTE: If the team does change engines, Newman would start at the rear of the field befpre the drop of the green flag for the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway.(5-29-2005)
- Happy Hour practice for the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway is over, the fastest:
slowest: #50-Spencer 178.483 and #43-Green 179.259
no speeds: #17-Kenseth
#17-Kenseth wrecked early in the session as he was going on the track on the apron, lost it and spun back and forth, then backed into the outside wall, the team plans to try to fix the car so they do not have to give up the 3rd starting spot.
most laps run: #6-Martin, 42; #40-Marlin and #2-Wallace, 36
Best average speed [all laps averaged]
(from NASCAR.com's leaderboard service)
#5-Busch, 181.931 [3rd fastest lap], 20 laps run
#25-Vickers, 181.850 [5th], 24 laps
#97-Busch, 181.513 [13th], 22 laps
See speeds NASCAR.com.(5-28-2005)
- First Saturday practice for the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway is over, the fastest:
slowest: #37-Lepage 181.245 and #23-Skinner 181.513
most laps run: #31-Burton, 36, #9-Kahne, #91-Elliott, 35
Best average speed [all laps averaged]
(from NASCAR.com's leaderboard service)
#48-Johnson, 183.766 [1st fastest lap], 18 laps run
#38-Sadler, 182.844 [2nd], 21 laps
#17-Kenseth, 182.625 [7th], 23 laps
See speeds NASCAR.com.(5-28-2005)
- Newman wins pole with new track record: #12-Ryan Newman won the pole for the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway with a new track record of 192.988mph, breaking his own track record set last Oct of 188.877mph. Twenty-two driver broke the old track record thanks to the levigation [smoothing] that was done this past spring. The Budweiser pole is the 4th of 2004 for Newman and 31st of his career. Newman has won three career races from the pole. Did ya know? all four of Newman's 2004 poles have been at SMI tracks: Las Vegas, Atlanta, Texas, Lowe's.
#24-Jeff Gordon is on the outside pole with the rest of the top-five being #17-Matt Kenseth, #9-Kasey Kahne and #48-Jimmie Johnson. Missing the race were #11-Leffler [was 37th fastest], #32-Hamilton Jr., #66-Sadler, #36-Said, #34-Fuller, #00-Long, #92-Raines, #75-Garvey and #27-Shelmerdine. #13-Sacks withdrew after running slow in practice.
The speed of 192.988mph moves Lowe's Motor Speedway in 2nd for the fastest CURRENT race track on the tour with only Atlanta faster.
See starting lineup, qualifying results, pole progression, top-35 how they did, practice results on Jayski's Semi-Live Qualifying Page.(5-26-2005)
- Coca-Cola 600 Qualifying Notes:
• Ryan Newman won the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Bud Pole for the Coca-Cola 600, lapping Lowe’s Motor Speedway in 27.981 seconds at 192.988 mph. He broke Mike Bliss’ track-qualifying record of 28.540 seconds, 189.208 mph, set in qualifying for the NEXTEL Open May 20, 2005.
• The top-18 qualifiers broke Bliss’ six-day-old track record.
• This is Newman’s 31st career Bud Pole in 128 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races. He is the only driver that has started from the top-10 in every race this season. This is his 19th consecutive top-10 start. The record for top-10 starts is 66 by Bobby Issac
• Newman took over sole possession of 10th on the modern-era Bud Pole list, breaking a tie with Buddy Baker. Darrell Waltrip leads the modern-era Bud Pole list with 59.
• This is Newman’s fifth Bud Pole and ninth top-10 start in nine races at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. He has won the Bud Pole in four of the last five races here. His worst start in his nine races here is fourth.
• Jeff Gordon posted the second-quickest qualifying lap of 28.136 seconds, 191.925 mph – and will join Newman on the front row for the Coca-Cola 600. Gordon has started from a top-10 starting position in 18 of his 25 races at Lowe’s. Fifteen of those were top-fives, including seven Bud Poles. He won the Bud Pole for the Coca-Cola 600 five straight times between 1994 and 1998. This is his fourth top-10 start in 2005, all fourth or better.
• This is the sixth Bud Pole for Dodge in 2005. Chevrolet has four and Ford has two.
• Matt Kenseth (third) posted his second top-10 start in 12 races at Charlotte. It is his third top-10 start this season, but his first better than 17th since Las Vegas.
• Kasey Kahne (fourth) scored his second top-10 start in three races at Charlotte. It is his seventh top-10 start this season and his third consecutive top-five.
• Jimmie Johnson (fifth) posted his sixth top-10 start in eight races at Charlotte. It is his seventh top-10 start this season, but only his third since Atlanta.
• Ten drivers failed to qualify for the Coca-Cola 600: Jason Leffler, Bobby Hamilton Jr., Hermie Sadler, Boris Said, Jeff Fuller, Carl Long, Tony Raines, Mike Garvey, Kirk Shelmerdine and Greg Sacks. This is the largest car count since there were 57 cars at
Daytona in February 2005.
• There have been only three different Bud Pole winners in the nine NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races at Charlotte since Ryan Newman won his career-first Bud Pole here in qualifying for the 2001 Coca-Cola 600: Newman (five), Jimmie Johnson (two) and Jimmy Spencer (one). Qualifying was canceled in the fall of 2002.
• Jimmie Johnson won the 2003 Coca-Cola 600 from the 37th starting position, the furthest back a race winner has started at Charlotte.
• Six of the last 16 races at Charlotte have been won from the front row, but six of the last 11 have been won from a starting position of 13th or worse.(NASCAR Statistical Services)(5-26-2005)
- Ramblings - Lowe's Motor Speedway:
It may not have been Friday, but you couldn't tell it by looking at the starting grid. It was Ryan Newman (yet again) to take the pole at Lowe's Motor Speedway, and the expressions on the other driver's faces tell the story. It's not often you see these guys go slack-jawed, but when Rocket Ryan turns a lap like he did tonight all you can do is tip your hat.
Newman toured this quad-oval in 27.981 seconds.....that's 192.988 mph! (We knew that track record wouldn't last a week, didn't we?) His 4th pole of the season (and 4th in the last 5 at LMS) was also the 31st of his NEXTEL Cup career. He'll be joined on the front-row by Jeff Gordon for Sunday's Coca-Cola 600.
The first 18 cars were all quicker than Mike Bliss's track record.
Matt Kenseth (3rd) has his best starting spot since he had the pole at Dover in September of 2003....but we lined up by points that day. This is his best qualifying on speed since he had the pole at Dover in June of 2002!
Jimmie Johson (5th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 3rd at Atlanta in March.
Dale Jarrett (7th) has his best starting spot since he timed in 7th at California in February.
Mike Bliss (8th) has his best starting spot since he qualified 7th at Chicagoland last July.
Jamie McMurray (11th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 11th at Darlington last November....but we started by points that day. This is his best qualifying on speed since he started 10th at Phoenix last November.
Mark Martin (13th) has his best starting spot since he qualified 12th at Atlanta in March.
Jimmy Spencer (17th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 16th at Homestead in November of 2003!
Robby Gordon (25th) has his best starting spot since he qualified 25th at California in February.
STREAKIN....Ryan Newman has 19 Top-10 starts in a row.
Elliott Sadler has 4 Top-10 starts in a row.(Stock Car Fans)(5-26-2005)
- Qualifying Order for the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway is up, 53 drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, #0-Mike Bliss is due out first, the last driver scheduled out is #44-Terry Labonte. For the Qualifying order, see my Jayski's Coca-Cola 600 Practice/Qualifying/Lineup Page.(5-26-2005)
- Coverage of Qualifying for the for the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speed on Thursday, May 26, 2005 is scheduled to start at 7:10pm/et.
TV: Speed Channel at 7:00pm/et.
Radio: PRN Radio and XM Satellite NASCAR Radio
Internet: NASCAR.com [Pit Command/Trackside - paid]
Jayski: Jayski's Semi-Live Qualifying Page.
Qualifying Re-Air: 2:00pm/et on Friday, May 27th; and 12:00am/et on Saturday, May 28th.
- Thursday Practice for the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway is over, the fastest:
#38-Sadler 189.960 [over track record of 188.877mph]
#7-Gordon 188.765 [a nice surprise]
slowest: #13-Sacks 175.376 and #27-Shelmerdine 176.074
most laps run: #31-Burton, 32; #19-Mayfield, 28
Best average speed [all laps averaged]
(from NASCAR.com's leaderboard service)
#24-Gordon, 187.924 [3rd fastest lap], 6 laps run
#38-Saler, 187.817 [1st], 6 laps
#7-Gordon, 187.216 [5th], 6 laps
See speeds on my Jayski's Coca-Cola 600 Practice/Qualifying/Lineup Page.(5-26-2005)
- Rookie News and Notes
- Entry List for the Coca Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway is up, 53 drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including these drivers who need to get in on speed and are NOT in a 2005 Top-35 Owners Points Position:
Not in top 35 of owners points - 11 race attempts by team:
#7-Robby Gordon (full-time 2005 planned)
#11-Jason Leffler (full-time team)
#32-Bobby Hamilton Jr. (full-time team)
#37-Kevin Lepage (full-time 2005 planned)
#66-Hermie Sadler (full-time 2005 planned)
#92-Tony Raines (full-time 2005 planned)
Not in top 35 of owners points - less then 11 attempts
#00-Carl Long (part-time sched)(7 attempts)
#09-Johnny Sauter (part-time sched)(9 attempts)
#13-Greg Sacks (no idea on plans)(1 attempt)
#23-Mike Skinner (limited sched)(2 attempts)
#27-Kirk Shelmerdine (part-time)(7 attempts)
#34-Jeff Fuller (didn't attempt Talladega)(10 attempts)
#36-Boris Said (limited sched)(3 attempts)
#44-Terry Labonte (10 races planned)(3 attempts)(1st up for champions provisional, if needed)
#50-Jimmy Spencer (part-time)(2 attempts)
#75-Mike Garvey (part-time)(3 attempts)
#91-Bill Elliott (3 attempts)(has champ provisional to use if #44 doesn't need it)
IF qualifying was rained out the eight who would make it: #'s 44,91,11,32,37,7,66,92
missing the race would be: #'s 34,00,09,1,13,23,27,36,50,75
For the full list see my Jayski's Charlotte Entry List, 53 cars entered.(5-24-2005)
- Race Penalties Now Less Severe: Beginning with the Advance Auto Parts 500 at Martinsville, eight infractions that used to bring a stop-and-go penalty will now be addressed with a pass through the pits. They include a crew member jumping over the wall too soon, too many crewmen in the pit service area, using more than two air wrenches during a stop, and tossing the fuel or catch cans. Other violations now covered by a pass-through penalty are: crew members returning from the equipment side of the wall, illegal use of extension poles, failing to carry the front air wrench to the pit wall side, and noncompliant refueling. A stop-and-go requires a car to return to its pit box for 15 seconds, while the lesser penalty is merely going back through pit road at the required speed limit.(FoxSports/AP)(3-20-2005)
- Impound Rules: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Impound Procedures In 2005
The NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series will impound cars after qualifying in 21 of 36 championship events plus the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge. The following are tracks in which NASCAR will implement this procedure: Feb. 27-California; Mar. 20-Atlanta; Apr. 3-Bristol; Apr. 23-Phoenix; May 7-Darlington; May 14; Richmond; May 21-Lowe’s (All-Star Challenge); June 12-Pocono; June 19-Michigan; July 2-Daytona; July 17-New Hampshire; July 24-Pocono; Aug. 14-Watkins Glen; Aug. 21-Michigan; Aug. 27-Bristol; Sept. 10-Richmond; Sept. 18-New Hampshire; Oct. 9-Kansas; Oct. 30-Atlanta; Nov. 20-Homestead.
Following qualifying for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series event, the cars will be escorted to their respective garage stalls by a NASCAR Official (with the exception of the top five cars, which will be placed in a designated area for post-qualifying inspection).
Once the car is pushed to the garage stall, only two crew members will be allowed to remain in the garage.
The following work list will be allowed:
1. Shut off electrical switches and master power switch;
2. Remove radio;
3. Check air pressure in tires;
4. Cover the car; and,
5. Crewmembers exit garage and garage doors close.
Pit road selection will be immediately after the last car has qualified.
Procedure for race day for NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series teams:
Garage Stall A maximum of two (2) crew members per car, accompanied by a NASCAR Official, will be allowed in the garage stall. Below are the procedures that will be completed in the garage stall:
1. Plug in oil heater (if teams use a generator, it must remain outside the garage);
2. Open hood;
3. Prime oil system;
4. Back car out of garage to start;
5. Turn master switch on;
6. Open oil cooler bypass valve (optional)’
7. Start engine;
8. Close hood;
9. Set tire pressure;
10. Torque wheels;
11. Install radio and water bottle;
12. Remove or repair tape on front of car (i.e. grille, valance, brake ducts.); and
13. If applicable, BST or Pi Research may replace equipment batteries under NASCAR supervision.
Teams May NOT:
1. Enter the garage without a NASCAR Official present;
2. Jack up any part of the car;
3. Add water or pressurize the cooling system;
4. Climb inside the car;
5. Adjust wedge bolts, shocks or sway bars;
6. Add fuel, oil or brake fluid;
7. Remove air box; or
8. Adjust fenders, spoiler or any body components.
Fuel Pumps: A maximum of three (3) crewmembers per car at anytime, escorted by NASCAR Officials, may go to the fuel pumps. For Tracks 1 mile and under, a maximum of two gallons of fuel will be added. For Tracks 1 ½ miles, a maximum of three gallons of fuel will be added. For Tracks above 1 ½ miles, a maximum of four gallons of fuel will be added.
Height Platform A maximum of three (3) crewmembers per car at anytime, accompanied by NASCAR Officials, may escort the respective car to the height platform.
1. Adjust front and rear wedge bolts: A maximum of one (1) turn for front bolts. A maximum of 1 ½ turn for rear bolts.
2. Adjust track bar at frame end adjuster. No maximum on track bar adjustment.
3. Adjust external shock bleeds.
Teams May NOT:
1. Change any components.
2. Add spring inserts.
Scales A maximum of three (3) crewmembers per car at anytime, accompanied by NASCAR Officials, may escort the respective car to the scales. Any car that does not meet required weight specifications may be subject to penalty. After completion, the generator will be reconnected to the car and pushed to pit road. Generators will be permitted out on pit road with the car.(NASCAR)(3-18-2005)
- some 2005 Changes in the Cup Series:
- New Dodge Model: Charger takes over for the Intrepid
- Spoilers reduced 1" to 4 1/2" at all tracks BUT Talladega and Daytona
- Gear Ratio rule, teams will have 2 choices of what gear ratio to use at all tracks BUT Talladega and Daytona, supposedly the gear ratio's will be between 3.80 and 4.00
- Hard Liquor sponsors now allowed
- NASCAR is using a computer timing system to check for speeding on pit road
- The top 35 teams in Owners Points will be guaranteed to make the race, the final teams by speed, then field set by speed, for the first FIVE races, 2004 owners points standings will be used for the top 35.
- The Impound Rules will be used at over half the races.
- Each car must have a full tank of fuel in the gas tank when the driver makes a qualifying lap, for ALL races.
- Restrictor plate size changed from 29/32 [58/64] to 57/64"
- No Racing to the Caution Rule and Q&A/Lucky Dog
- Jayski's - 2005 Nextel 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).
- Links: Practice speeds, qualifying and results can be found at these sites:
TRACK RECORDS, NOTES, RULES and NEWS
- WHO'S HOT heading to the Coca Cola 600:
• Jeff Gordon and Greg Biffle have each won three races in 2005, more than any other drivers.
• Jimmie Johnson is the only driver to score eight top-10 finishes in 11 races in 2005.
• Jamie McMurray and Tony Stewart have each scored top-10 finishes in the last three races.
• Roush Racing drivers have won five of the 11 races in 2005. All were on superspeedways. Hendrick Motorsports drivers have scored four victories, Richard Childress Racing and Evernham Motorsports each have one.(NASCAR Statistical Services)(5-23-2005)
- Track Qualifying Record: Ryan Newman, Oct 2004, 188.877mph
- Event Qualifying Record: Jimmie Johnson, May 2004, 187.052mph
- 2004 Pole Sitter: #48-Jimmie Johnson, 187.052, finished 1st
- Track Race Record 500 miles: Jeff Gordon, Oct 1999, 160.306mph
- Track Race Record 600 miles: Bobby Labonte, May 1995, 151.952mph
- May 2004 Race Winner: #48-Jimmie Johnson, 142.763mph, started 1st
- Slowest Race Record: Junior Johnson, 107.752mph, 1960
- Most Wins: 6 - Darrell Waltrip, Bobby Allison; Current driver: 4, Jeff Gordon
- Most Poles: 14 - David Pearson; Current driver: 7, Jeff Gordon
- Most Top 5s: 23 - Bobby Allison and Richard Petty
- Most Top 10s: 31 - Richard Petty
- Oldest Winner: Cale Yarborough, 46 years, 6 months, 9 days, 10/6/85
- Youngest Winner: Jeff Gordon, 22 years, 9 months, 25 days, 5/29/94
- Most Laps Led [500 mile race]: 328, Ernie Irvan, 10/10/93
- Most Laps Led [600 mile race]: 335, Jim Paschal, 5/28/67
- Most Laps Led by a Race Winner: 335, Jim Paschal, 5/28/67
- Fewest Laps Led by a Race Winner: 3, Joe Weatherly, 5/21/61
- Most Lead Changes: 59 - 5/27/79
- Fewest Lead Changes: 2 - 5/21/61
- Most Leaders: 18, 5/29/88
- Fewest Leaders: 3, 5/21/61
- Most Cautions: 14, 5/25/80
- Most Caution Laps: 113, 5/25/80
- Fewest Cautions: 0 - 5/21/61
- Fewest Caution Laps: 0, 5/21/61
- Most Finishers on a lead lap: 19, 10/8/00
- Most Running at the Finish: 39, 10/11/03
- Fewest Running at the Finish: 10 - 5/21/61
- Most Wins by Manufacturer: 31 - Chevy
- Worst Starting Spot to Win: Jimmie Johnson, May 2003, started 37th
- Races won from starting pos 1: 13 [of 92 races] 14.1%
- Races won from starting pos 2: 13, 14.1%
- Races won from starting pos 3: 12, 13.0%
- Races won from starting pos 4: 7
- Races won from starting pos 5: 7
- Races won from starting pos 6: 5
- Races won from starting pos 7: 6
- Races won from starting pos 8: 2
- Races won from starting pos 9: 4
- Races won from starting pos 10: 2
- Races won from starting pos 12: 2
- Races won from starting pos 13: 3
- Races won from starting pos 14: 1
- Races won from starting pos 15: 2
- Races won from starting pos 16: 2
- Races won from starting pos 17: 2
- Races won from starting pos 18: 2
- Races won from starting pos 20: 2
- Races won from starting pos 21: 1
- Races won from starting pos 22: 2
- Races won from starting pos 25: 1
- Races won from starting pos 37: 1
- Races won from the top 5: 52 of 92 - 56.5%
- Races won from the top 10: 71 of 92 - 77.2%
- Charlotte Nuggets
(NASCAR Statistical Services)(5-9-2005)
- Track Specs:
Superspeedway: 1.5-mile quad oval
Race Length: 334 laps, 501 miles
Banking: turns: 24 degrees; straights: 5 degrees
Straights: Frontstretch - 1952.8 feet; Backstretch - 1360 feet
Grandstand Seating: 171,000
Pit Road Speed: 45mph
Pace Car Speed: 55mph
- Track Website: www.lowesmotorspeedway.com
- 2004 Charlotte May Race Info Page
- 2004 Charlotte Oct. Race Info Page
- National Anthem at the Coca-Cola 600...more traditional: Sunday's Coca-Cola 600 will offer a more traditional do, re, mi in the celebration of the red, white and blue. Anthony Hamilton's soulful detour Saturday night from the standard melody of "The Star-Spangled Banner" was about as familiar to the Lowe's Motor Speedway race fans as a right turn. Though the Charlotte native was cheered after his performance, the subsequent reviews on the Charlotte Observer's letter page were withering. Gentlemen, stop your engines. In fact, Hamilton's version before the Nextel All-Star Challenge was interpretive, respectful and artfully done. But he swerved from the traditional melody at the start, and he was still a car length away by the time he dropped the checkered flag on "the home of the brave." Race officials, though complimentary of Hamilton's passion and artistry, promise to have the anthem back between the lines, especially at Sunday's 600, the climax of Charlotte's two-week grip on the NASCAR world. As one spokeswoman put it Thursday: "If it's not a traditional version, somebody will be in big trouble."
Miss Clemson, Kate Moon, will handle the honors at the Saturday race. And eight "American Idol" finalists will stand before the mic Sunday. "We've encouraged them to stick to a more traditional performance," said speedway spokesman Jerry Gappens. The speedway heard from about 100 critics after Hamilton's performance, Gappens said. That's not exactly a quorum, considering more than 100,000 people were on hand for the race and millions more watched on TV. But in this case the nays will have it, it being an anthem that Francis Scott Key might recognize. Phone calls Thursday to Hamilton's publicity agents in New York weren't returned.(Charlotte Observer)(5-27-2005)
- Smith plans to keep All-Star race at LMS: Speedway Motorsports owner Bruton Smith will continue to work to keep
the Nextel All-Star challenge at Lowes Motor Speedway. During a Q & A with reporters Smith was asked if he would consider moving the event if it stayed in the SMI family of facilities. Smith said "We're not going to move it to another one. We will not do that." Even Las Vegas? "We will not do that." But doesn't Vegas need another date? "Yeah, but it won't be that one."(PRN's Garage Pass Radio Show)(5-25-2005)
- Spectacular Aerial Pre-Race Show Set for Coca-Cola 600: Building on a rich tradition of spectacular pre-race shows, Lowe's Motor Speedway officials outlined details today for an All-American Spectacular pre-race show for the May 29 Coca-Cola 600 that will include circus-style aerial thrill acts performed at heights exceeding a 14-story building. With Cirque-style chorography, five aerial thrill acts will offer non-stop entertainment for race fans attending the 46th running of Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race.
The acts include the "Human Cannonball" as stuntman Dave "The Bullet" Smith Jr. soars 150-feet along the front straightaway; "Galaxy Girl" who will perform death-defying maneuvers some 140-feet in the air on a high mast; and the Nock Air Helo Trapeze will feature the world's only trapeze extreme team performing aerial stunts on a high-wire mounted below a moving helicopter. Stunt aerialists will also perform on Sway Poles reaching 60 feet into the air and the entertainment is rounded out by five giant Space Wheels, which extend 40-feet into the air and feature breath-taking performances. The circus aerial acts are part of the speedway's extensive pre-race entertainment that includes performances by the "American Idol" finalists, "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest, several celebrities and a strong salute to our country's armed forces. All pre-race entertainment is included with a ticket to the Coca-Cola 600. Tickets are available through the speedway ticket office by calling 1-800-455-FANS or online at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com.(5-24-2005)
- Sad News - man dies at LMS: A Charlotte man died after a race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway this weekend. Friends said Chris Keistler, 46, passed out after Saturday's All-Star race and never woke up. Jeremy Karle believes his buddy died from alcohol poisoning. David Hampton heads Cabarrus County's paramedic teams and said rescue crews rarely see cases of alcohol poisoning among race fans. “I can't remember the last one that we actually dealt with,” he said. The most common alcohol-related call comes when the weather is warm and fans drink too much beer and not enough water. But Hampton said race fans having fun do not always see trouble before it's too late. The Medical Examiner is waiting for a toxicology report to determine Keistler's exact cause of death. Friends said he was single and did not have any known health problems.(NBC 6/WCNC)(5-24-2005)
- Busch Grand Marshal and Starter at Lowe's: CARQUEST Auto Parts announced that Al Duebber will serve as Grand Marshal and Richard Robb will be Honorary Starter for the NASCAR Busch Series CARQUEST Auto Parts 300 on Saturday, May 28 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Each year, CARQUEST presents its Excellence Award and selects a TECH-NET Professional/ASE Technician of the Year to those deserving professionals in their chosen field. These awards are unique and act as an industry benchmark as they recognize not only superior performance, but also the continued education of the auto service dealer. Duebber, a 32-year veteran of the automotive repair industry, is the recipient of the 14th annual CARQUEST Excellence Award, which recognizes an independent automobile service business that exemplifies the professionalism and image of people working in the auto service industry. Robb, a 29-year veteran of the automotive repair industry, is the 2004 TECH-NET Professional/ASE Technician of the Year. This annual award recognizes an ASE Certified Master Technician who excels on the ASE automobile certification exams and works at a TECH-NET Professional Service Center. With L-1 certification, Robb owns Hi-Tech Automotive in Elkhorn, Wisconsin. For the nearest CARQUEST location, visit www.CARQUEST.com.(PR)(5-24-2005)
- Skydiver at LMS, MORE: been getting questions about a supposed skydiver accident at Lowe's Motor Speedway on Saturday night before the Nextel All-Star Challenge. I was not there,just saw the little bit of TV coverage, have not heard or seen anything out there but was told that is was announced on LMS's PA system that it was NOT a person that crashed/went into the parking lot, but did not specify what it was.
MORE Spectators and media alike thought a tragedy unfolded in Saturday’s pre-race festivities when an unopened parachute plummeted to the infield ground. Fortunately, the chute had no skydiver attached to it and fell harmlessly to the ground. At the time, no one knew what had happened and spectators gasped at the thought of a skydiver taking a fall. An announcement from NASCAR shortly before the start of The Open put fans and media at ease.(Gaston Gazette)
AND there was concern about the cut-away canopy that landed outside LMS last night. The jumper was not happy with the
way his primary canopy opened so he "cut-away" and deplyed his reserve. The jumper landed safely, on target, and on time, in the
speedway along with the other two parachutists.(5-22-2005)
- Will the All-Star Challenge stay at LMS? Fans were handed buttons as they walked through the gates at Lowe's Motor Speedway that read, "Racing was built here. Racing belongs here." Even as local and racetrack officials intensified their efforts to keep the Nextel All-Star Challenge at the 1.5-mile speedway, speculation continued to grow it might be moved. The merger between Nextel Communications and Sprint, which will be finalized later this year, triggered a lot of talk the race could be moved around on a rotating basis. Fueling the speculation is the fact NASCAR is owned and controlled by the France family - the same people who own International Speedway Corp. Lowe's is a member of rival Speedway Motorsports Inc., while the tracks in Richmond and Kansas City are owned by ISC. In short, the France family would make millions by moving the all-star race to one of their tracks. Nextel officials, however, still love Charlotte. They are impressed with the community's passion for the sport and the way speedway officials have fought to keep back-to-back races in the area in May. The decision to keep the race at Lowe's doesn't belong to Nextel. "That's one of things that's NASCAR's call," said Michael Robichaud, Nextel's senior director of sports and entertainment marketing. "We expect it to stay here, we expect it to continue to grow as an event, to grow and learn from what we learned this year and take it a few steps forward. Hopefully it will be here next year, but I haven't been privy to next year's schedule. These are the best fans, they love the sport. We love it here. It's been great to us here." Nextel officials not only aren't part of the scheduling process, they apparently aren't even given a preview of the schedule. Nextel didn't learn its all-star race was returning to Lowe's until the schedule was released to the public last May.(Augusta Chronicle)(5-22-2005)
- Sam Bass All-Star Race and Coca Cola 600 Program Covers: In a day and age when longevity is sometimes nothing more than a nine-letter word, one of auto racing's longest-running streaks is still going strong. Motorsports artist Sam Bass just finished designing and painting his 45th and 46th consecutive souvenir program covers for Lowe's Motor Speedway, extending a tradition that began way back in 1985. An original artwork entitled "All-Star Wars!" will grace the cover of the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge program, while the Coca-Cola 600 publication is to feature a composition cleverly referred to as "Bottle Rockets!" Both illustrations are available as limited edition prints and fine art posters.
"ALL-STAR WARS!" If you've ever attended the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge, you know that the competition is out of this world. And that's just what you'll see in "All-Star Wars!" as a fleet of NASCAR's bravest warriors engage in all out combat against an intergalactic backdrop. Centerpiece of the illustration is a shot of Dale Earnhardt Jr. -- eyes wrought with intensity-- tightly gripping the steering wheel in the heat of battle. Meanwhile, more than a dozen of the cars contesting the annual speedfest are streaking across the starscape locked in a futuristic dogfight. It's 25th century excitement in the here-and-now!
"The NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge is such an epic event, and when it comes to action and excitement, the sky's the limit," said Bass, the first artist officially licensed by NASCAR. "I thought it would be fun to illustrate the race as the larger-than-life battle that it
has become. With this kind of star power you never know what's going to happen next!" Edition size for "All-Star Wars!" is limited to only 500 prints, signed and numbered by the artist.
"BOTTLE ROCKETS!" The world's most recognizable beverage container and motor racing's most distinctive trophy share the spotlight in "Bottle Rockets!" The classic contoured Coke bottle takes center stage in the illustration, with the trademark Lowe's Motor Speedway trophy visible inside and the official Coca-Cola 600 logo overhead. That scene is flanked on either side by a "comin'-at-ya" shot of 10 Coca-Cola Racing Family competitors running at full throttle. In the foreground is a banked view of defending race winner Jimmie
Johnson's Lowe's Chevrolet. Below that are side views of the cars of retiring icons Rusty Wallace and Mark Martin, with the "Rusty's Last
Call" and "Salute To You" tour logos prominently displayed.
"I've been fortunate to illustrate every Coca-Cola 600 program cover since it began its title sponsorship in 1985," Bass explained. "Their
products and the drivers they partner with are icons of the sport, as well as fan favorites. I really appreciate Coca-Cola for allowing my
art to be part of the family."
The edition size for "Bottle Rockets!" will be 600 signed and numbered prints. Prints or posters of either "All-Star Wars!" or "Bottle
Rockets!" may be ordered by calling the Sam Bass Gallery at 1-800-556-5464. Or order online at www.sambass.com.(LMS PR)(5-21-2005)
- Road Improvements and Pre-Race Shows Combine To Improve Traffic Flow for NASCAR Events With the completion of Charlotte-area interstate widening projects and spectacular pre-race shows on tap, Lowe's Motor Speedway officials expect smooth traffic flow for the May 21 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge and May 29 Coca-Cola 600. In recent years, fans traveling to the Charlotte region have encountered ongoing road construction along Interstates 77 and 85. But this year, both major arteries will pump race fans quickly toward the speedway, thanks to the completion of 68 additional miles of highway in the form of four additional lanes on I-85 and eight additional lanes on I-77. Since Speedway Boulevard linked the speedway's main entrance to I-85 in 1999, enhancements to improve traffic ingress and egress have been made on an almost annual basis. In 2001, Highway 29 in front of the speedway was expanded to five lanes and overhead directional signs were added. In 2002, all unreserved parking in speedway-owned lots became free of charge to get fans in the lots and off the roadways faster. In 2003, Interstate 485 provided another major artery to the speedway area by looping northbound race traffic around Charlotte to U.S. Highway 29. In addition, the speedway spent $1.5 million paving parking lot aisles to weatherproof parking areas. For the upcoming race weekends, traffic engineers will consistently monitor flow patterns from highway cameras and use electronic message boards to steer fans toward less-congested routes. The message boards will be in key locations from the South Carolina border to as far north as Greensboro, benefiting not only out-of-state traffic but also thousands of in-state race fans from the Raleigh/Durham and Greensboro/Winston-Salem/High-Point areas. Charlotte area fans are encouraged to use U.S. Highways 29 and 49 to reach the track.
On Saturday, May 21, rock group The Black Crowes will perform a pre-race concert at 3 p.m. as a prelude to the 7:30 start of the
NEXTEL Open and the 9 p.m. NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge. For the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday, May 29, gates open at noon so fans can enjoy a spectacular pre-race show headlined with a musical performance by the "American Idol" finalists from the hit FOX
television program. Show host Ryan Seacrest will emcee the performance. An extreme aerial circus with a human cannonball and a
high-wire helicopter trapeze act is also on the pre-race agenda along with Robosaurus, the car-eating mechanical dinosaur. The Coca-Cola 600 will start at approximately 5:40 p.m. Each pre-race show concert is included in the price of admission to its respective event. Tickets are still available for all May events at Lowe's Motor Speedway and can be obtained online at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-455-FANS.(LMS)(5-18-2005)
- Ticket sales off at LMS: Lowe's Motor Speedway has sold just over 100,000 seats for the Coca-Cola 600 on May 29, speedway President Humpy Wheeler told the Observer on Wednesday. That's a "few thousand" behind last year's sales at this time, he said, declining to be more specific. The track is one of the largest in racing, with about 170,000 seats. The 600 is traditionally on Memorial Day weekend, capping off almost two weeks of racing. Wheeler attributed the drop to high gas prices, the economy and bad memories of a rain-shortened race two years ago. Officials are expected to update ticket sales sometime this week.(ThatsRacin.com), for info on buying tickets, go to lowesmotorspeedway.com.(5-12-2005)
- CTC Pole Night Ticket Celebrates Martin's 13 Victories at Lowe's: Celebrating Mark Martin's final start in the Coca-Cola 600 and his amazing 13 victories at Lowe's Motor Speedway, the Batesville, Ark., native is featured on the collectible ticket for CTC Pole Night on Thursday, May 26. In recognition of the #6 that has adorned Martin's race cars for many years, production of the Mark Martin collectible ticket, the 26th in a series of Lowe's Motor Speedway Pole Night ducats, was limited to just 6,000. The ticket, printed in vibrant four-color on quality stock, sells for $15 in advance and will be $20 the day of the event. Martin has designated this season his "Salute To You" Tour as he concludes one of the most successful careers in NASCAR history. Since making his NEXTEL Cup Series debut in 1981, Martin has won 81 races in NASCAR's top two divisions with 10 of those coming at Lowe's Motor Speedway. In one of the most spectacular drives ever through lapped traffic, Martin held off teammate Matt Kenseth to win the 2002 Coca-Cola 600. He also has three victories in the UAW-GM Quality 500 along with six NASCAR Busch Series triumphs at the 1.5-mile superspeedway. In addition, Martin's Lowe's Motor Speedway win total includes the 1998 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge and he is the only driver to win an International Race of Champions event at the track, claiming victories in 1996 and 1997.
Time trial runs during CTC Pole Night on Thursday, May 26, will determine the 43-car starting field for the Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR
NEXTEL Cup Series race on Sunday night, May 29. The Lowe's Motor Speedway debut of the CRASHCars, a revolutionary new entry-level stock car division, and a giant fireworks extravaganza are also on the schedule. The limited-edition Mark Martin CTC Pole Night ticket, along with tickets for all May events at Lowe's Motor Speedway, can be ordered online at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com or by calling the speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS.(LMS PR)(5-6-2005)
- Grand Marshals of the Coca-Cola 600: Idol's: The stars of the hit FOX television program, "American Idol," will take the stage as part of the pre-race show at the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C. Joining the Idols for the pre-race activities and driver introductions will be the show's popular host, Ryan Seacrest. American Idol finalists will perform the national anthem, plus several other songs prior to the race on Sunday, May 29. As part of the festivities, 12 children of North Carolina servicemen and women currently serving overseas will participate in the show as Grand Marshals. Ryan Seacrest and the Idols will also appear on the Coca-Cola stage at Food Lion Speed Street on Saturday, May 28. Television coverage of the 2005 Coca-Cola 600 is scheduled to begin at 5:00 p.m. EDT on FOX. The race is set to start around 5:40 p.m., and can also be heard on the radio on the Performance Racing Network (PRN).
Affordable tickets for the event are still available online at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-455-FANS.(LMS PR)(5-5-2005)
- Triple Play Ticket Package Available at LMS: The All-Star Triple Play ticket package now available from Lowe's Motor Speedway offers race fans the opportunity to hit a home run with big savings on tickets for three spectacular events during NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Week. Priced at just $54, the All-Star Triple Play represents a 15% savings if tickets for these three events were purchase separately. The All-Star Triple Play package includes: Admission to the inaugural NASCAR NEXTEL Pit Crew Challenge on Thursday night, May 19, at the Charlotte Coliseum. A frontstretch ticket for NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Qualifying and the Quaker Steak & Lube 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race on Friday night, May 20, at Lowe's Motor Speedway. A great seat in the Diamond Tower Terrace for the star-studded NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge on Saturday night, May 21.
For race fans wanting to "turn two," a second money-saving NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Week package is also available. The All-Star Double Play offers two action-packed nights for one low price. The Double Play includes a ticket to the NASCAR NEXTEL Pit Crew Challenge and a Diamond Tower Terrace ticket for the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge for the incredible price of $39, a savings of 10 percent. The All-Star Double and Triple Play packages are not available online. They can only be purchased by calling 1-800-455-FANS or visiting the Lowe's Motor Speedway ticket office.(LMS)(4-14-2005)
- All-Star Race Likely Back at LMS in 2006: NASCAR's Nextel All-Star Challenge race is likely to return to Lowe's
Motor Speedway near Charlotte in 2006, but NASCAR isn't ready to say the race will remain there in the future, The Charlotte Observer
reports. The paper says a vice president from Nextel, which sponsors NASCAR's Cup series as well as the all-star race, said that the
company was happy with the Charlotte area's efforts for the race and indicated the event would likely come back in 2006. But NASCAR Vice President Jim Hunter said nothing has been decided about the long term. "Every year, we revisit the idea of moving the all-star race," he said. The story says the all-star event creates an estimated $94 million impact on the region's economy in travel and tourism dollars.(NASCAR Scene Daily Newsletter)(4-7-2005)
- Lowe's Motor Speedway to Conduct Accident Care Team Training Session: In preparation for the May races at Lowe's Motor Speedway, including the May 21 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge and May 29 Coca-Cola 600, the track's emergency services department will host an Accident Care Team training session April 2-3. The course, open to all emergency services personnel, teaches proper techniques for responding to motorsports emergencies. It covers basic to advanced medical, fire and rescue scenarios involving a variety of racing vehicles ranging from go-karts to NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series stock cars. Participants will receive hands-on training in fire control, medical scenarios and extrication from experienced rescue personnel, including members of Lowe's Motor Speedway's highly regarded safety crew. The National Fire Protection Association 610 standards will also be covered.
The two-day session is free for all certified North Carolina firefighters and emergency medical technicians along with safety crew
members from NASCAR-sanctioned race tracks. There is a $55 fee for out-of-state students and those not affiliated with an emergency
services agency. Participants need to bring their own personal protection equipment. For information on the ACT training session, contact the Lowe's Motor Speedway emergency services department at (704) 455-4028.(LMS)(4-1-2005)
- Food Lion AutoFair at Lowe's Motor Speedway; One of Lowe's Motor Speedway's giant parking lots will be transformed into a county fair-style amusement park April 7-10 as the inaugural Food Lion AutoFair Carnival offers fun for adults and children of all ages. Located at the intersection of Speedway Blvd. and Highway 29 in the speedway's silver parking lot, the Food Lion AutoFair Carnival will feature more than a dozen rides along with a variety of games and concessions. Combining traditional country themes with contemporary entertainment, the midway will include a Ferris wheel, a tilt-a-whirl, a merry-go-round, Tubs of Fun, the Castlemania Fun House and much more. More info at lowesmotorspeedway.com.(3-27-2005)
- Sponsorships Available at LMS: A limited number of individual and corporate lap sponsorships are still available for the Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race on Sunday evening, May 29, at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Priced at $250 per lap, a sponsorship includes two pre-race pit passes and two collectible tickets for CTC Pole Night on Thursday, May 26. In addition, each lap sponsor's name is featured in the souvenir program and included on the entry form supplied to all NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series teams.
Each pre-race pit pass must be accompanied by an event ticket which is sold separately. Pit road access is limited to individuals 16 years of age and older and NASCAR's dress code is strictly enforced. Coca-Cola 600 lap sponsorships can be purchased by contacting the Lowe's Motor Speedway corporate sales department at (704) 455-3203.(LMS)(3-22-2005)
- SMI looking to beef up attendence at LMS: Speedway Motorsports Inc. is moving aggressively to tackle declining attendance at its flagship [Lowe's Motor Speedway] track here [Concord/Charlotte, NC] in the heart of NASCAR country. While the Concord-based company's overall performance remains strong -- and attendance continues to climb at its five other tracks -- Lowe's Motor Speedway took an overall 10% dip in ticket sales during 2004. Although SMI President Humpy Wheeler says increases in sponsorship sales and other areas largely offset the ticket decline, the speedway is moving to stem further erosion. "When you get to a facility over 150,000 seats, I don't care where it is, you have to stay on top of it," he says. "It's real hard (to sell that many seats) all the time." Before last fall's NASCAR Nextel Cup race at Lowe's, speedway officials slashed prices on 38,000 of the track's 171,000 permanent seats, or 22% of capacity. At the same time, the speedway cut prices for the spring 2005 races, including reductions of as much as 50% on some seats. In all, 46,000 seats, or 27% of capacity, will be less expensive for the Coca-Cola 600 in May compared with 2004 rates. Since those moves took effect, Wheeler, still concerned over sluggish demand, has taken several more steps aimed at boosting fan interest. The measures include: Hiring a full-time advertising agency, Knoxville, Tenn.-based The Tombras Group, to create ticket-sales campaigns for print and broadcast outlets. The agency works on similar campaigns for SMI's tracks in Bristol, Tenn., and Atlanta. Doubling the amount spent on direct-mail campaigns to $250,000 annually. Enlisting an electronic-marketing expert to ramp up Internet-based sales and marketing. Boosting the ticket-office sales staff to 16 employees.(Charlotte Business Journal)(3-8-2005)
- LMS Offers High-Speed Family Entertainment: The cars and stars of NASCAR will invade Lowe's Motor Speedway for two of the sport's most exciting weeks of auto racing in May and numerous family specials are in place, offering high-speed entertainment at affordable prices. The action-packed May schedule includes NASCAR racing's all-star event, the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge on Saturday night, May 21, and the longest event in major-league auto racing, the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday evening, May 29. Family priced seating in a special non-alcoholic section is available for the CARQUEST Auto Parts 300 on Saturday night, May 28. Tickets in the non-alcoholic grandstand for the CARQUEST Auto Parts 300 are just $10 for children 12 and under and $25 for adults. Children affiliated with any form of Scouting, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, etc., can enjoy the CARQUEST Auto Parts 300 free of charge from a seat in Lowe's Motor Speedway's South Grandstand. Each Scout must wear his or her uniform and Scout Packs are encouraged to attend as a group. One Pack leader will be admitted free-of-charge with six Scouts. Family priced seating is also available for the Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race on Sunday, May 29. Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon are just a sampling for the 43 drivers that will be in action. Children 12 and under can watch the race from a seat in the Fourth-Turn Terrace for just $10 while accompanying adults are admitted for only $49. Family priced specials are also available for NASCAR NEXTEL Cup qualifying during CTC Pole Night on Thursday, May 26. More than 50 drivers will give it their best shot in timed runs around the 1.5-mile oval with the fastest-and bravest-earning the No. 1 starting spot for the Coca-Cola 600. Children under 6 will be admitted free to CTC Pole Night and just $1 gains entry for those ages 6 to 12. Adult tickets are $12 in advance.(LMS PR)(3-2-2005)
- Lowe's Motor Speedway to Renovate Racing Surface UPDATE: With a goal of creating more side-by-side racing during the May 21 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge and May 29 Coca-Cola 600, engineers are using a combination of Global Positioning System technology and three-dimensional laser mapping to smooth the 1.5-mile racing surface at Lowe's Motor Speedway. H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, president and general manager of Lowe's Motor Speedway, and several engineers involved in the process will be on hand Tuesday to discuss the high-tech methods being used to smooth the track's racing surface. Wheeler will also detail why he decided to diamond grind the track rather than repave it.(LMS PR)(2-21-2005)
UPDATE: With a goal of producing more side-by-side racing during the May 21 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge and May 29 Coca-Cola 600, engineers are using a combination of Global Positioning System technology and three-dimensional laser mapping to smooth the 1.5-mile racing surface at Lowe's Motor Speedway.
"Basically what we've got is a beautiful golf course but the putts aren't going exactly where we want. So we are smoothing out the
greens," said H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, president and general manager of Lowe's Motor Speedway. "When we paved the track in 1994, we used a polymer in the pavement that was fairly new at the time. It has held up remarkably well, but like all high-banked race tracks it has developed deviations. We talked extensively about repaving the track but right now the way the race cars are set up, new pavement tends to create a one-groove track," said Wheeler, noting single-file racing is not what fans expect at Lowe's Motor Speedway. "When the grinding process is complete, the track is going to be so much smoother that I think it will make a tremendous difference in the racing."
The track grinding process began with engineers using a three-dimensional laser to map the track. So precise that it can detect bumps not visible to the naked eye, this system generated an extremely accurate 3-D map of the track's racing surface. "This map is so accurate that it shows imperfections in the racing surface that even the best driver could never feel," Wheeler explained. Engineers then attached a Global Positioning System receiver to a street vehicle Wheeler drove numerous laps around the track. Driving the same lines used by NASCAR competitors, the GPS utilized a satellite to produce a digital map of Wheeler's exact location as he
circled the 1.5-mile track.
"There are three distinct grooves on this type of race track," Wheeler said about his laps around the speedway. "One is what I call a
qualifying groove, which is the fastest. The second is a passing groove and it's just to the outside of the qualifying groove. Then
there's a third groove up high that I call the Richard Petty groove. We originally identified seven places we wanted to grind," Wheeler
continued. "But after I got on the track, the places that had been ground were so smooth I said let's go ahead and do all of the turns."
Employees of Penhall Company, a highly respected leader in the grinding industry, began the track milling process early last week
using a computer-controlled diamond-grinding machine. Work is expected to be completed late this week.
The renovated racing surface places added importance on the track's open testing days. NASCAR NEXTEL Cup teams are scheduled to test May 3-4 in preparation for the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge on Saturday night, May 21, and the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday evening, May 29. NASCAR Busch Series teams will be on the track April 26-27 preparing for the May 28 CARQUEST Auto Parts 300.(LMS PR)(2-24-2005)
- Lowe’s Motor Speedway Ticket Office Now Open Weekends: With annual renewal requests fulfilled, Lowe’s Motor Speedway officials announced today that fans can now purchase tickets for any of the track’s 2005 events, including the May 21 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge and the May 29 Coca-Cola 600, seven days a week. Operating hours for the track’s ticket office have been extended with agents on hand from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays. Fans can purchase tickets during these hours by calling 1-800-455-FANS or visiting the ticket office on the second floor of Lowe’s Motor Speedway’s Smith Tower. Tickets are also available online 24 hours a day at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com. Tickets for the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge, NASCAR’s annual all-star event, on Saturday night, May 21, start at just $33 while tickets for the Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race on Sunday evening, May 29, can be purchased for as low as $49.(LMS PR)(2-10-2005)
- Major Renovation Underway at The Speedway Club: The Speedway Club at Lowe’s Motor Speedway is undergoing its first major renovation since the facility opened in 1987. Located high above the Lowe’s Motor Speedway frontstretch, The Speedway Club has more than 4,000 members who look to the club to assist in entertaining friends and clients in the region’s most unique setting. The restaurant portion of The Speedway Club is currently closed, but banquet and meeting facilities are still operating. The club will also continue to serve a buffet lunch on Tuesdays from 11:30am to 2:00pm/et and its famous Surf and Turf dinner will be available each Tuesday from 6:00 to 9:00pm/et. These meals will be served on the fifth floor. Several other special events, including the traditional Daytona Brunch on Feb. 20 and the Feb. 26 Chocolate Lovers Dining Stations and Presentations, are also on tap. In addition, the First Floor Café is now operating from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday in the Smith Tower lobby. The morning menu includes Starbucks coffee and pastries while soups, wraps and numerous other items are available during lunch hours.
For membership information or premium seating options to all NASCAR events at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, contact The Speedway Club sales department at (704) 455-3240.(LMS PR)(2-10-2005)
- LMS Public Relations Dept adds: Kevin Druckenbrod, a 10-year veteran of the radio promotions industry, has joined Lowe's Motor Speedway's marketing and public relations department as a communications specialist. In his new position, Druckenbrod, 29, will spearhead the speedway's electronic marketing; execute on- and off-site promotions with advertising partners; and manage the speedway's web site. Druckenbrod previously worked in a variety of promotional capacities for Charlotte radio station WKKT. He most recently served as internet producer for WKKT's parent company, Clear Channel Charlotte, managing web sites for its five area radio stations. Tickets for May 21 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge, NASCAR racing's annual all-star event, and the May 29 Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series event are now on sale and can be obtained online at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-455-FANS.(LMS PR)(2-7-2005)
- Promotion at LMS: Scott Cooper has been promoted to the newly created position of director of marketing and public relations for Lowe's Motor Speedway. The promotion is part of a restructuring which merges the speedway's marketing initiatives into the public relations department. Cooper had been senior manager of promotion and media relations since joining the speedway in 1999. In his new position, Cooper, 37, will oversee the speedway's advertising, direct marketing and promotional efforts. He will also
implement and manage an electronic-marketing campaign; serve as the company's primary liaison with its advertising agency; and continue to assist with selected public relations duties. Cooper will continue to report to Jerry Gappens, whose title has changed to vice president of marketing and public relations. A graduate of the University of North Carolina, Cooper resides in Charlotte with his wife Susan and their two children.(LMS PR)(1-25-2005)
- LMS Rewards Hickory Sanitation Workers Who Returned $5,100: Edwin Workman and Todd Little, the Hickory sanitation workers who returned $5,100 they discovered in a bag of discarded clothing while working their route, will be rewarded
with VIP experiences during the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Saturday night, May 21, at Lowe's Motor Speedway. After discovering the money-51 $100 bills-the men returned the money to the house where they had picked up the bag. H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, president and general manager of Lowe's Motor Speedway, was so impressed with the men's honesty he decided to reward
them. Wheeler phoned the men Monday with an invitation to attend the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge on Saturday night, May 21. Each man will receive two VIP tickets, a reserved parking space and a pre-race pit tour. Wheeler also told the men he plans to introduce them during pre-race ceremonies. Tickets for the May 21 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge, NASCAR's annual all-star race, start at just $33 and are available by calling the speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS or online at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com.(LMS PR)(1-19-2005)
- Local Charlotte Groups show support for All-Star Challenge: A local organizing committee of tourism groups, political leaders and motorsports companies kicked off a campaign Thursday to boost support of the Nextel All-Star Challenge, which will again be held at Lowe's Motor Speedway next spring. The fund-raising effort includes the speedway as well as tourism-related groups from Charlotte, Cabarrus County, Iredell County and others. No fund-raising goal was disclosed at a luncheon held at the speedway. The funds will be used to create promotional campaigns and events. Leaders are hoping to convince sanctioning body NASCAR not to relocate the race, which generates an estimated $94 million economic impact, according to speedway-commissioned studies.
The All-Star Challenge will run May 21 at the speedway. Related events uptown and across the region are aimed at giving the nationally telecast race a higher profile. It drew nearly 150,000 fans in 2003. NASCAR officials have mulled moving the race around the country, similar to what is done in baseball, basketball and hockey. Decisions on the race site will be made on a year-to-year basis, NASCAR says.(Charlotte Business Journal)(12-17-2004)
- SMI Named in Forbes List: Speedway Motorsports, Inc., a leading marketer and promoter of motorsports entertainment in the United States, is among the 200 Best Small Companies in America according to an annual ranking by Forbes magazine. The annual feature, which appears in the Nov. 1 issue of the prestigious magazine, includes companies with revenues from $5 million to $750 million (small by Forbes standards), net profits greater than 5 percent and share prices above $5 as of Oct. 1. Speedway Motorsports became the first company in motorsports history to go public on the New York Stock Exchange in 1995. In addition, the Company announced it has completed the exchange of all outstanding unregistered 6¾% Senior Subordinated Notes due 2013,
that were issued in a private transaction on July 7, for new registered 6¾% Senior Subordinated Notes due 2013.(LMS PR)(10-27-2004)
- Past track news: posted in the past at Jayski's Past Track News/Rumors - Lowe's Motor Speedway
- #725 for Petty: #45-Kyle Petty will start his 725 career Nexte Cup race in today's Coca Cola 600, Petty is 7th on the all-time start list.(5-29-2005)
- Eight drivers lose practice time: As at Richmond two weeks ago,  several drivers were held out of practice for periods of time for having been late to inspection. At Richmond, cars were held for being late the previous week at Darlington. This week, eight cars were delayed for the same thing at Richmond. The drivers held Thursday were #9-Kasey Kahne, #29-Kevin Harvick, #40-Sterling Marlin, #41-Casey Mears, #5-Kyle Busch, #49-Ken Schrader, #66-Hermie Sadler and #27-Kirk Shelmerdine.(Speed Channel)(5-27-2005)
- Martin to be honored: #6-Mark Martin will be inducted into Lowe's Motor Speedway's prestigious Court of Legends prior to CTC Pole Night qualifying. Martin is also featured and honored on the ticket for CTC Pole Night. "It's a great honor," said Martin. "In my opinion Lowe's Motor Speedway is the greatest place on earth to race and I think a lot of the speedway and the people who have made it what it is. It's a great compliment to know that they think enough of me to do this and I'm honored by the recognition. We've had some great runs and great wins at Lowe's and hopefully we aren't done just yet." Martin will join NASCAR legends such as Richard Petty, Junior Johnson and Darrell Waltrip as his handprints and racing shoe print are cemented in the Court of Legends walkway leading to Lowe's Motor Speedway's main entrance. Speedway officials will also present Martin with a special framed edition of the CTC Pole Night collectible ticket featuring his likeness and detailing his accomplishments at the track. The ceremony will feature Martin and Lowe’s Motor Speedway president and general manager H.A. “Humpy” Wheeler and will be held at the Avenue of Flags leading to the second floor of the Smith Tower at Lowe’s Motor Speedway.(Roush Racing)(5-26-2005)
- Skinner in the #23 at LMS: Mike Skinner will run the #23 Bill Davis Racing Dodge this weekend at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in the Coca-Cola 600. Skinner most recently raced the #23 Bill Davis Racing Dodge last month at Talladega Superspeedway, where he was taken out of contention in the 25-car pileup on lap 132 of the 194-lap event (started 34th, finished 42nd). He also raced the #23 at Daytona International Speedway in February.(Bill Davis Racing)(5-25-2005)
- #34 gets sponsor for Coke 600: Denver, NC based MACH 1 Inc. announced today that REVI Technical Wear will be
the primary sponsor on the #34 Chevy [driver Jeff Fuller?] this weekend for the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowes Motor Speedway. REVI will remain as an associate sponsor on the #34 for the remainder of the 2005 season. Revi Technical Wear (www.reviwear.com) is a maker of custom team apparel. Their unique process is sublimation printing, which is a gas dyeing process. Revi's prints are permanent and enhance garment performance and wear. Revi is now
supplying Motorsport Crew apparel to major teams in Nextel Cup, Busch Series, Craftsman Truck Series, Trans AM, IRL and Champ Car markets. Their shirts feel and look better and will last longer than traditional crew shirts. An expert in sublimation printing, Revi has supplied a wide range of sports markets internationally for over 18 years. These sports include Cycling, Professional Baseball, Professional Soccer, Professional Lacrosse and Summer and Winter Olympic Sports.(Mach 1 PR), see image of the scheme on my #34 Team Schemes page.(5-25-2005)
- See the 2005 Team Chart, which has links to past news for each team and info on each team.
PAINT SCHEME NEWS
- Smirnoff on the #97: Kurt Busch's #97 Ford Taurus sports the colors of Smirnoff Ice at the Coca-Cola 600 for the first of three times this season. The colors will also run at Daytona in July and California in Sept.(Roush Racing)(5-25-2005)
- Bugles for Green: This weekend, Jeff Green steps behind the wheel of the specialty-schemed #43 Bugles Dodge for Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600 at the Lowe’s Motor Speedway.(Williams Company)(5-25-2005)
- GoPhone for Burton at LMS: Jeff Burton’s bright orange #31 Cingular Wireless Chevrolet will have a new look at the Coca-Cola 600 with a special paint scheme to promote Cingular Wireless’ new GoPhone, a prepaid or pay-as-you-go wireless service providing consumers with the ultimate level of freedom, control and choice of their wireless products and plans. With no annual contract or credit check, GoPhone is perfect plan for the quick and painless wireless pit stop while still providing consumers with all of the latest products and services that have helped Cingular become the largest wireless carrier in the country.(RCR)(5-25-2005)
- Country Cocktails Scheme for Blaney: The #07 Chevy of Dave Blaney will once again sport the Jack Daniel’s Country Cocktails paint scheme for the Coca-Cola 600.(RCR)(5-25-2005)
- New sponsor/look for Lepage at Lowe's UPDATE Underdog: This Friday [May 20th], The #37 R&J Racing Team will announce its two-race sponsorship program on Friday, May 20th with Classic Media, Inc. Classic Media is America's largest independent family entertainment company and manages some of the world's most recognized kids' and family properties across all media including feature film, television, home video and consumer products. The #37 R&J Racing Dodge Charger will be encouraging race fans to "Have No Fear!" at this weekend's upcoming Nextel Cup All-Star Challenge and next weekend's Coca-Cola 600. The team will be unveiling its "animated" new look on Friday just prior the Nextel All-Star Challenge open-practice at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Concord, NC.(R&J Racing)(5-19-2005)
UPDATE: The #37 R&J Racing Dodge Charger has joined forces with Underdog, the world's most lovable superhero, for two of NASCAR's most high profile races, this weekend's Nextel Cup All-Star Challenge and the Coca-Cola 600 on Saturday, May 28. The #37 racecar will be fueled by the "speed of lightning and roar of thunder" in its all-new red, white and blue Underdog paint scheme. In recent months the team has been referred to as the 'underdog' of Nextel Cup. Beginning with a 9th place finish in the Daytona 500, the team has sought week after week to qualify and race in every Nextel Cup event on the schedule thus far. Lepage and his crew are working against the odds with a small new team with big dreams. It's no secret that the team has been making waves and gaining a substantial amount of support from the fans. Kevin Lepage, driver of the #37 Dodge Charger said, "Underdog is one of my favorite cartoons. I was actually watching the show not long ago and thought about how our team was a lot like this scrappy superhero. So many fans have cheered for us as the 'underdog' team that continues to race against the odds, that it makes perfect sense to have the real Underdog character support the No. 37 Dodge Charger." For the next two races, R&J Racing has teamed up with Classic Media to bring Underdog himself to the racetrack.
Since the animated TV series debuted in the 1960s, Underdog has become a pop-culture icon. Audiences all over the world continue to cheer Shoeshine Boy and his alter ego Underdog, as the unlikely superhero helps restore order to society whenever danger looms. Called into action by his would-be girlfriend, ace news reporter Sweet Polly Purebred, the anti-hero must thwart the evil plans of unsavory characters such as the mad scientist Simon Barsinister or the underworld boss Riff Raff. Using a phone booth to swiftly change into the pup-of-steel, Underdog flies into action. Underdog is currently starring in a national advertising campaign for Visa Check Card. A live action/CGI Underdog feature film is also currently in development with Spyglass Entertainment.(R&J Racing), see images of the car on my #37 Team Schemes page.(5-20-2005)
- 'Reverse' scheme for Martin: For the first time of the "Salute Tour," #6-Mark Martin and the Viagra* Team will run the special 'reverse' night scheme this weekend at Phoenix, in this year's first night race of the season. Martin will run the scheme at all night races in 2005.(Roush Racing)(4-19-2005)
- GM Goodwrench Kicks off 20th Anniversary Celebration: GM Goodwrench, a division of General Motors Service and Parts Operations (GMSPO), has announced plans for their 20th anniversary celebration of NASCAR sponsorship with Richard Childress Racing in 2005.
3) Two events will coincide with the May race weekends at Lowe's Motor Speedway. First, fans watching the NEXTEL All-Star Challenge will see a recreation of one of the first special paint schemes when the #29 GM Goodwrench Silver Select Chevrolet hits the 1.5-mile high-banks. That next week, GM Goodwrench and RCR will host a Family Reunion at the RCR Museum, bringing together faces from the past and present that have helped keep the GM Goodwrench/RCR bond so strong.
GM Goodwrench first officially shared room on the #3 Wrangler Chevrolet with Earnhardt as an associate sponsor at RCR in May of
1985. Two-and-a-half years later they took over the primary sponsorship role on the #3 and remained on the hood until Earnhardt's passing in February of 2001. The next race at North Carolina Speedway, Harvick was given the honors to take over the coveted GM Goodwrench ride with a brand new #29 on the side and it's been that way ever since.
As a sponsor, GM Goodwrench has enjoyed unparalleled success during its relationship with RCR, accumulating six NASCAR Winston Cup Series championships, a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship, 68 race wins, the biggest Daytona 500 victory in the modern era, and two stunning Brickyard 400 wins.
Famed NASCAR illustrator Sam Bass is the creator of all four of the unique paint schemes that will help GM Goodwrench celebrate their 20-year partnership with RCR. "It's an honor to be able to create these unique paint schemes for such a big occasion," said Bass, who also created GM Goodwrench's 20th anniversary logo. "All of these paint schemes were pretty easy to come up with, especially with the significance of what was going on during those times. I really appreciate GM Goodwrench and RCR allowing me to be a part of so much in their partnership, and I hope this helps to show their dedication to one another."(Champion Sports Group PR)(2-16-2005)
- Lots of special schemes for McMurray in 2005 UPDATE 2: #42-Jamie McMurray will race five different Texaco/Havoline "Shine On" paint schemes in 2005. McMurray will drive the first special paint scheme at Texas on April 17.(RacingOne)(12-7-2004)
UPDATE: added four schemes that will be run at Texas (Apr), Lowe's (May), Sonoma (June) and Talladega (Oct) to the #42 Team Scheme page. The fifth one, that was posted before, not sure where that will be run, Texas in Nov.?(1-28-2005)
UPDATE 2: Jamie McMurray, a third-year veteran of the Texaco/Havoline race team, will be charging the competition with four new paint schemes during in 2005. Each unique vehicle leverages Texaco's trademark "Shine On" theme, including a retro paint scheme marrying the Texaco/Havoline logo and "Shine On" graphics. These inspired designs pay tribute to Texaco/Havoline's successful NASCAR history while emphasizing the iconic status of the star. "The star has always symbolized quality and performance," says Danny Roden, vice president of North American marketing for ChevronTexaco. The "Shine On" series is about honoring that heritage and using vibrant new designs to reinforce it". This season marks Texaco/Havoline's 18th consecutive year as sponsor in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series. McMurray will drive the #42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge with a different "Shine On" paint scheme at each of the following Nextel Cup races:
· Dallas, TX: April 17, 2005
· Charlotte, NC: May 29, 2005
· Sonoma, CA: June 26, 2005
· Talladega, AL: October 2, 2005
(Ganassi Racing PR), see the new images of the schemes on my #42 Team Scheme page.(2-8-2005)
- CARQUEST joins #5 team, five 2005 races as the primary: Hendrick Motorsports today announced a multi-year agreement that will feature CARQUEST Auto Parts as a major associate sponsor of the #5 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series team with driver Kyle Busch. Along with associate-sponsorship status on the #5 Kellogg's Chevrolets throughout the schedule, the pact will showcase primary
CARQUEST color-schemes on the car in 10 NEXTEL Cup events, divided equally between the 2005 and 2006 seasons. Raleigh-based CARQUEST, the Official Auto Parts Supplier of Hendrick Motorsports since 2002, began its association with Busch this past
season as primary sponsor of Hendrick's #84 NEXTEL Cup effort. The six-race initiative marked the series debut of Busch at his hometown track of Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March, along with additional events at Lowe's Motor Speedway, California Speedway, Kansas Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway. For the nearest CARQUEST location, visit www.CARQUEST.com.
CARQUEST COLOR-SCHEMES - 2005 NEXTEL CUP DATES:
Feb. 27, California; April 3, Bristol; May 29, Lowe's Motor Speedway; Oct. 9, Kansas; Nov. 6, Texas(Hendrick Motorsports PR)(12-29-2004)
- More Paint Scheme news can be found on Paint Schemes Gallery
RACE /CHAMPIONSHIP ODDs
(this is not to promote gambling but to offer readers odds and ideas on what the
'experts' think about the upcoming race and the Cup series season)