THE NEXT Nextel Cup RACE
NEWS, STATS and INFO

the Jayski site is housed at:



THE RACE: Aaron's 499

Nextel Cup Race #9 of 36 for the 2005 season

Updated: often, leading up to the race

  • Race: Sunday, May 1, 2005 in Talladega, AL

  • TV: FOX 1:0pm/et

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

  • Race Re-Air: on Speed Channel
    Wednesday, May 4 [Fast Forward, 2-hour recap] at 5:00pm/et;
    Thursday, May 5 [Replay] at 3:00pm/et;
    Saturday, May 7 [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: $5,814,065 (was $5,711,245 in 2004)


    Practice Dates/Times/TV

  • Practices: Friday, April 29, 10:30am - 12:30pm/et; Saturday, April 30, 10:30 - 11:15am/et

  • Happy Hour Practice: Saturday, April 30, 12:10 - 12:55pm/et on TV-FX tape delay at 1:00pm/et - no re-air


    Qualifying Info

  • Qualifying Draw: Friday, April 29, 9:30am/et

  • Qualifying: 2 laps for positions 1-42 and 43 [past champ or fastest left] if open, Friday, April 29 at 4:10pm/et, TV-Speed Channel, re-air at 8:00pm/et AND live via radio at Motor Racing Network (MRN) 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

    Tire:
    Goodyear Eagle Speedway Radials
    Codes: Left-side -- D-6844 Right-side -- D-6846
    Circumference: Left-side -- 87.9 in. Right-side -- 88.4 in.
    Estimated Pit Window: Every 32-36 laps, based on fuel mileage.

    Number of Tires:
    Nextel Cup: Left-side -- 1,100 Right-side -- 1,100
    Busch Series: Left-side -- 550, Right-side -- 550

    Technical Inspection Inflation:
    Left Front -- 30 psi
    Right Front -- 55 psi
    Left Rear -- 30 psi
    Right Rear -- 50 psi

    Minimum Recommended Inflation:
    Left Front -- 27 psi
    Right Front -- 50 psi
    Left Rear -- 27 psi
    Right Rear -- 45 psi

    Notes: Both the NASCAR Nextel Cup and Busch Series will run the same tire codes this weekend . . . this is the first time Goodyear has brought this combination of left- and right-side tires to Talladega . . . this is the only track at which Nextel Cup teams will run this specific tire set-up this season, though it is similar to the one run at Daytona . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners in their tires at Talladega . . . air pressure in those liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.

    Goodyear Quote: Mark Keto, lead engineer, stock car racing, said, "While the compounds on this tire set-up are the same as last year at Talladega, we made some minor construction changes to increase the stability of the tire. These changes are the same as the ones we made to the Daytona set-up for this year, so we expect to see the same excellent performance we had in Florida in February."


RACE BONUS INFO

  • The NASCAR Nextel Cup Leader Bonus is $60,000 at Talladega Superspeedway 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
    (4-24-2005)

  • 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 Talladega: $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*
    (* 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, 5
    Kurt Busch, 5
    Tony Stewart, 4
    Joe Nemechek, 2
    Rusty Wallace, 2
    (4-24-2005)


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


IN-CAR AUDIO SITES

Fans Can Online(NASCAR Online)
looks like this is all that there is out there now....

QUALIFYING, PRACTICE and RESULTS
news and links

  • Jeff Gordon dominates and wins a wild race at Talladega: #24-Jeff Gordon won the Kurt Busch won the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway, holding off #20-Tony Stewart and #15-Michael Waltrip who tried to team up and make a run, but couldn't catch Gordon on the Green-White-Checker finish. It is Gordon's 72nd career win, 3rd of the 9 race season and 10th restrictor plate win. The win comes on Rady Dorton's 51st birthday, Dorton was the Hendrick Motorsports engine guru who passed away in the Hendrick Motorsports plane crash last October. In a wild race which included not the BIG ONE but the HUGE ONE when #48-Johnson got into #4-Wallace after Wallace got loose when #8-Earnhardt Jr. bump drafted Wallace, sending Wallace spinning and collecting 25 cars total, the 2nd most cars involved in a wreck at Talladega [April 2003]. Then with two laps tp go, there was a mini-big one when Johnson smacked the outside eall, came down on Harvick, who came down on #1-Truex Jr. who hit #8-Earnhardt Jr. and shot across the track with Johnson. So we had a green-white-checker finish and the longest race ever at Talladega 194 laps for 516.04 miles. #48-Johnson still holds the points lead which really got suffled around with the wrecks. #49-Ken Schrader finished 8th, his first top-10 since Bristol in March 2003. #77-Kvapil was the highest finishing rookie at 18th. The race will re-air on Speed Channel, Thursday, May 5th at 3:00pm/et.
    Race Results on Jayski's Talladega Race Results/award/links page.(5-1-2005)

  • NASCAR Nextel Cup Drivers Points after Talladega - 9 of 36 races
    #48-Jimmie Johnson, 1368
    #97-Kurt Busch, 1238, -130
    #24-Jeff Gordon, 1217, -151
    #16-Greg Biffle, 1181, -187
    #38-Elliott Sadler, 1164, -204
    #20-Tony Stewart, 1088, -280
    #88-Dale Jarrett, 1085, -283
    #29-Kevin Harvick, 1083, -285
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr., 1070, 298
    #42-Jamie McMurray, 1067, -301
    The top 18 in drivers points are still under 400 points back and in the Chase.
    See full standings on my Jayski's Drivers/Owners Points after Talladega page.(5-1-2005)

  • Talladgea Race Notes:
    * Jeff Gordon won the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway, scoring his 72nd NASCAR NEXTEL Cup victory in his 410th career start. His last victory came at Martinsville, three races ago.
    * This was Gordon's 10th career restrictor-plate victory in 50 career restrictor-plate races. Gordon scored 28 top-10 finishes in those 50 races.
    * It marked Gordon's fourth victory in 25 races at Talladega. Gordon also won this race one year ago.
    * Gordon has scored three victories in 2005, more than any other driver. He also posted victories at Daytona and Martinsville.* Gordon has climbed from 12th to third in the NASCAR NEXTEL CUP point standings in the last four races.
    * Gordon has scored four top-10 finishes in nine races this season.
    * Gordon scored the sixth victory for car owner Rick Hendrick at Talladega. This was Hendrick's 134th victory as a car owner and fourth in nine races this season.
    * This was the fifth victory in 2005 for Chevrolet. Ford has four victories while Dodge still seeks their first of the season.
    Notebook Items
    * Tony Stewart (second) posted his eighth top-10 finish in 13 races at Talladega Superspeedway. It was his fourth runner-up finish at Talladega. Stewart has scored four top-10 finishes in nine races this season. He climbed from 14th to sixth in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup point standings.
    * Michael Waltrip (third) posted his 13th top-10 finish in 39 races at Talladega Superspeedway. He scored his fourth top-10 finish and third straight in 2005.
    * Jeremy Mayfield (fourth) scored his second top-10 finish in 22 races at Talladega Superspeedway. This was his career-best Talladega finish. This marked Mayfield's first top-10 finish in 2005. He climbed from 16th to 12th in the point standings, his highest ranking of the season.
    * Jamie McMurray (fifth) scored his second top-10 finish in six races at Talladega Superspeedway. It was his career-best Talladega finish.
    * Ken Schrader (eighth) scored his 12th top-10 finish in 41 races at Talladega Superspeedway. Schrader scored his first top-10 finish since Bristol in March 2004.
    * Dale Earnhardt Jr. (15th) has climbed from 27th to ninth in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup standings in the last six races.
    * Travis Kvapil (18th) was the highest finishing Raybestos Rookie-of-the-Year contender for the fourth time in 2005.
    * Jimmie Johnson (20th) posted his first DNF since Kansas City in October 2005. He remained first in the point standings with a 130-point lead over second-place Kurt Busch.
    * Mark Martin (33rd) has been running at the finish in 31 consecutive races , the longest current streak.
    * Seven of the top-10 positions in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup point standings changed Talladega Superspeedway.
    * Jeff Gordon led 139 of the 188 laps, the first time that he has led the most laps in a race this season.(NASCAR Statistical Services)(5-1-2005)

  • Stock Car Fans - Rumblings - Talladega: Plate racing reared it's ugly head again today, and we had a "Big One" that was almost as big a one as we've ever seen. 25 cars in a tussle going into turn one on lap 133 brought out the red flag and that (combined with a lap 187 accident that put us into green/white/checker) gave us only 13 cars on the lead lap at the finish. But it may have mattered little as Jeff Gordon seemed to have 'em covered all day. As the only car able to pass without help today, he powered around Michael Waltrip on lap 185 and held off the advancing crowd to win the Aaron's 516 at Talladega Superspeedway for his second plate win of the season, and third overall. Gordon's domination resulted in leading the event 12 times for 139 laps....no one else led more than 12 circuits. This is Jeff's 72nd career win (he's seventh on the all-time list, four wins behind a guy who knew his way around the plate tracks a little, Dale Earnhardt) and his 4th in the last 5 plate races. His 4th win at Talladega was worth $365,116 from the over $5.8M in posted awards. This is win #134 for Hendrick Motorsports, and coming on Randy Dorton's birthday just makes it that much sweeter.
    Tony Stewart (2nd) had his best finish since he won at Watkins Glen last August.
    Jeremy Mayfield (4th) had his best finish since he won at Richmond last September. His Top-5 finish makes 23 drivers to score a T-5 this season, last year's number was 31.
    Ken Schrader (8th) had his best finish since he was 6th at Bristol last March. Schrader & Mayfield's Top-10's give us 33 drivers to score a T-10 this year, last year's number was 39.
    Kerry Earnhardt (17th) had his career-best finish today. His previous best was 24th when we were here last October.
    Martin Truex Jr (21st) had his career-best finish today. His previous best was 32nd at Homestead last November.
    STREAKIN....Michael Waltrip has 3 Top-10's in a row.
    Kurt Busch has 3 Top-10's in a row.
    This Week's Elevator....UP: Operator of the week is Michael Waltrip (+35), followed by Ken Schrader (+34), Dale Earnhardt Jr (+21), and Johnny Sauter (+21). DOWN: The Big Dropper was Ryan Newman (-34), followed by Scott Riggs (-23), Ricky Rudd (-23), Boris Said (-23), and Scott Wimmer (-21). This is Op #3 for Mikey....he leads the pack.
    Kurt Busch snips 43 points off Jimmie Johnson's lead.....it's now 130. Our "Stayin' Alive" line stays at 18, however.
    Tony Stewart gained the most spots today (14th to 6th) while Ryan Newman (7th to 15th) and Sterling Marlin (9th to 17th) fell the most.
    Mike Wallace and the #4 team move back into the 35th and final exempt qualifying spot for next weekend....by two points! Now you know why he stayed out to lead a lap today under yellow on lap 21, huh? Scott Wimmer will have to make the next race on time.(Stockcarfans.com)(5-1-2005)

    GREEN-WHITE-CHECKER

  • The Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway:
    The UNOFFICIAL Top Ten (start pos in parens), lap leaders, cars out, cautions and some notes
    after 194 of 188 laps:

    car#, driver, starting spot, laps led
    #24-Gordon (2)(139 laps led)
    #20-Stewart (11)(2 laps led)
    #15-Waltrip (38)(1 lap led)
    #19-Mayfield (22)
    #42-McMurray (13)
    #38-Sadler (3)(9 laps led)
    #97-Busch (10)(1 lap led)
    #49-Schrader (42)
    #88-Jarrett (14)
    #31-Burton (27)

    THIS IS UNOFFICIAL

  • Cars on the lead lap: 13 (of 43 starters)

  • Off track/out of race (13):
    #32-Hamilton Jr. (accident-out)
    #5-Busch (accident-out)
    #23-Skinner (accident-out)
    #36-Said (accident-out)
    #12-Newman (accident-out)
    #66-Sadler (engine/trans-out)
    #18-Labonte (engine-off)
    #48-Johnson (accident-out)
    #1-Truex Jr. (accident-out)
    #77-Kvapil (accident-out)
    #0-Bliss (accident-out)
    #22-Wimmer (accident-out)
    #25-Vickers (accident-out)

  • Laps Leaders Unofficial (16 with 33 lead changes):
    #24-Gordon (139 led most and halfway);
    #4-Wallace (1):
    #20-Stewart (2);
    #16-Biffle (2);
    #29-Harvick (12);
    #10-Riggs (4);
    #12-Newman (5);
    #8-Earnhardt Jr. (3);
    #01-Nemechek (1);
    #49-Schrader (1);
    #38-Sadler (9);
    #6-Martin (3);
    #97-Busch (1);
    #48-Johnson (8);
    #18-Labonte (1);
    #15-Waltrip (2);

  • Lap leaders: #29-Harvick pole; #24-Gordon 1-20; #4-Wallace 21; #24-Gordon 22-36; #20-Stewart 37-38; #16-Biffle 39; #24-Gordon 40-68; #29-Harvick 69-71; #24-Gordon 72-73; #10-Riggs 74; #29-Harvick 75-78;#12-Newman 79-83; #24-Gordon 84; #29-Harvick 85-88; #8-Earnhardt Jr. 89-91; #24-Gordon 92-102; #01-Nemechek 103; #49-Schrader 104; #10-Riggs 105-107; #29-Harvick 108; #24-Gordon 109; #38-Sadler 110-116; #16-Biffle 117; #6-Martin 118-120; #24-Gordon 121-123; #38-Sadler 124-125; #24-Gordon 126-133; #97-Busch 134; #48-Johnson 135-142; #24-Gordon 143-166; #18-Labonte 167; #24-Gordon 168-182; #15-Waltrip 183-184; #24-Gordon 185-194

    Cautions: 8 for 30 laps

    Caution 8 - Laps 188 - 192: #8-Earnhardt Jr. got hit by #1-Truex Jr. who said #29-Harvick came down on him after #48-Johnson came down on Harvick after Johnson smacked the wall, also collected were #16-Biffle, #77-Kvapil. Lots of damage to #48, #1, #29, #77 and #8.
    Caution 7 - Laps 173 - 174: #66-Sadler was smoking and looked like he lost an engine or transmission on the Caution 6 restart, after getting back on the lead lap and running 19th.
    Caution 6 - Laps 167 - 170: Debris on the track, some on the frontstretch, at the entrance of pit road.
    Caution 5 - Laps 134 - 137: #48-Johnson got into #4-Wallace after Wallace got bump drafted by #8-Earnhardt Jr. and the #4 got a tad loose then went sideways and the BIG ONE turned into the HUGE ONE with 20+ cars involved, looked like a parking lot. Red Flag came out as of 3:46pm/et, back to yellow at 4:30pm/et.
    THE LIST: #99-Edwards, #01-Nemechek, #11-Leffler, #12-Newman, #07-Blaney, #21-Rudd, #9-Kahne, #0-Bliss, #2-Wallace, #40-Marlin, #18-Labonte, #4-Wallace, #32-Hamilton Jr., #22-Wimmer, #25-Vickers, #6-Martin, #17-Kenseth, #10-Riggs, #48-Johnson, #36-Said, #09-Sauter, #5-Busch, #23-Skinner, #33-Earnhardt, #41-Mears, #43-Green....
    Caution 4 - Laps 117 - 120: #45-Petty stopped on the track.
    Caution 3 - Laps 103 - 107: #32-Hamilton Jr. lost a left front tire and tore up fender and left debris on the track.
    Caution 2 - Laps 39 - 41: #43-Green lost a tire on the back stretch and spun around and ended up in the grass, no one lese was involved, #66-Sadler did hit the tire when it hit him in the windwhield.
    Caution 1 - Laps 21 - 23: #45-Petty lost a tire and hit the wall in the front of the tri-oval, but drove on ok, and to the garage.

  • Who got a lap back on each caution at Talladega: The Lucky Dog Pack: (and their finish)
    (FOX calls it 'the Free Pass Car', NBC calls it the Lucky Dog - which I prefer)
    Caution 8: no lucky dog when 10 laps or less are left
    Caution 7: none given
    Caution 6: #66-Sadler, 29th
    Caution 5: none given
    Caution 4: #88-Jarrett, 9th
    Caution 3: #16-Biffle, 13th
    Caution 2: none, no one a lap down, that is on the track
    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)
    ---- #88-Jarrett was caught speeding exiting pit road and goes to the end of the longest line at the restart.
    ---- during the 4th caution, #31-Burton's jackman, Josh Yost, was clipped by another car [possibly #2-Wallace], is alert but will be taken to the infield care center, injuring his ankle/leg. UPDATE: Yost was taken to a local hospital for durther observation.
    ---- #45-Petty is back on the track on lap 103, after the team made repairs and is 82 laps down.
    ---- just a the 3rd caution came out, #0-Bliss was pitting for running out of fuel.
    ---- on lap 99, #22-Wimmer had to pit for a tire going down
    ---- during the green flag stops [laps 71-74], #88-Jarrett and #66-Sadler were penalized for speeding exiting pit road.
    ---- around lap 71, green flag pit stops started.
    ---- The #15 team let a tire roll accross pit road during their 2nd caution stop and had to start at the end of the longest line and the #99-Edwards pitted at the outside the pit box and was penalized..
    ---- #88-Jarrett couldn't hear his spotter and came into pit and got a new hemet during the 1st caution.
    ---- #21-Rudd made a put stop at the start of the 1st caution as he has a broken front shock.
    ---- pole sitter, #29-Harvick's engine was running hot, so he got out of the front and fell to 43rd to get some air and cool off the engine as of lap 10.
    ---- #29-Harvick's crew cannot hear him on the radio, he can hear them and the spotter can hear him.
    ---- TO The BACK [1] #99-Edwards [transmission change];

  • RAIN: cancelled both Saturday practices on April 30th at Talladega Superspeedway.

  • Harvick wins the pole at Talladega: #29-Kevin Harvick won the Budweiser pole for the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway with a speed of 189.804mph, almost a mph faster then #24-Jeff Gordon who ran 188.988mph and will start on the outside pole. The rest of the top-five are #38-Elliott Sadler, #10-Scott Riggs and #12-Ryan Newman. Missing the race were #7-Robby Gordon, #37-Kevin Lepage, #00-Kenny Wallace and #92-Stanton Barrett. #99-Carl Edwards qualified 21st but the team changed the transmission, so Edwards will start at the rear of the field. The pole is Harvick's 3rd pole and 1st since Indy in 2003.
    See qualifying results, starting lineup, lineup links, pole progression on my Jayski's Talladega Qualifying/Grid/Practice Page.(4-29-2005)

  • Talladega Qualifying News and Notes
    Kevin Harvick won the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Bud Pole for the Aaron's 499, lapping Talladega Superspeedway in 50.452 seconds at 189.804 mph. Bill Elliott track-qualifying record of 44.998 seconds, 212.809 mph, set April 30, 1987, prior to the implementation of restrictor-plates. Elliott also holds the restrictor-plate qualifying record at Talladega, 48.128 seconds, 199.388 mph, set May 4, 1990.
    Harvick posted his third career Bud Pole and his first since Indianapolis 2003, 60 races ago. It is his third top-10 start in 2005, all in the past four races. Harvick has just three top-10 starts in nine Talladega races. His previous best start here was second in April 2003.
    Harvick is the seventh different Bud Pole winner in 2005. Ryan Newman (three) is the only multiple Bud Pole winner this season.
    Jeff Gordon posted the second-quickest qualifying lap of 50.670 seconds, 188.988 mph, and will join Harvick on the front row for the Aaron's 499. Gordon tied his best Talladega start (July 1996) in posting his 13th top-10 start in 25 races here. He scored his fourth top-10 start in 2005, all in the past five races.
    This is the fourth Bud Pole for Chevrolet in 2005. Dodge has three Bud Poles and Ford has two.
    Elliott Sadler (third) posted his fourth top-10 start in 12 races at Talladega, all in the past five races. It is also his fourth top-10 start this season.
    Scott Riggs (fourth) posted his third top-10 start in 2005. Riggs has started from the top five in all three of his races at Talladega.
    Ryan Newman (fifth) posted his fourth top-10 start in seven races at Talladega, but his first since April 2003. Newman is the only driver to post top10 starts in every race this season.
    Jimmie Johnson (sixth) posted his sixth top-10 start in seven races at Talladega. It is his fifth top-10 start in 2005, but his first since Atlanta.
    Ricky Rudd (seventh) posted his 19th top-10 start in his 57 races at Talladega. It is his second top-10 start this season.
    Dave Blaney (eighth) posted just his second top-10 start in 2005 and his first start better than 16th in 10 Talladega races.
    Travis Kvapil (ninth) qualified for his first race at Talladega. He started 25th and finished 19th in the Daytona 500. He has been the highest-qualifying rookie in eight out of nine races this season.
    Boris Said (12th) posted his first start better than 27th in his six oval-course races. Said has four top-10 starts in 15 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup races, all on road courses.
    Kerry Earnhardt (31st) qualified for his fifth NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race. All but his career-first race (Michigan, August 2000) have been in restrictor-plate races.
    Dale Earnhardt Jr. (36th) posted just his second start outside the top top-20 in 11 races at Talladega. His career worst start here was 38th in September 2003.
    Four drivers failed to qualify for the Aaron's 499: Robby Gordon, Kevin Lepage, Kenny Wallace and Stanton Barrett.
    Forty of the 71 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup races at Talladega have been won from the first four starting positions (56 percent).
    Nine of the last 12 races at Talladega have been won from a starting position of 11th or worse.
    The furthest back a winner has started at Talladega was when Jeff Gordon won the DieHard 500 (April 2000) from the 36th-place starting position.
    Bobby Labonte is the last driver to win from the Bud Pole at Talladega (May 1998).(NASCAR Statistical Services)(4-29-2005)

  • How did the non Top-35 teams do in the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway qualifying? Eight in and four out:
    #00-Kenny Wallace - 184.338 - DNQ
    #09-Johnny Sauter - 185.151 - starts 43rd
    #1-Martin Truex Jr. - 186.351 - starts 32nd
    #4-Mike Wallace - 186.198 - starts 33rd
    #7-Robby Gordon - 185.104 - DNQ
    #23-Mike Skinner - 186.148 - starts 34th
    #32-Bobby Hamilton Jr. - 185.729 - starts 40th
    #33-Kerry Earnhardt - 186.496 - starts 31st
    #36-Boris Said - 187.471 - starts 12th
    #37-Kevin Lepage - 184.623 - DNQ
    #66-Hermie Sadler - 186.528 - starts 30th
    #92-Stanton Barrett - DNQ.(4-29-2005)

  • Coverage of Qualifying for the for the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway on Friday, April 29, 2005 is scheduled to start at 4:10pm/et.
    TV: Speed Channel at 4:00pm/et.
    Radio: MRN Radio and XM Satellite NASCAR Radio
    Internet: NASCAR.com [Pit Command/Trackside - paid]
    Jayski: Jayski's Semi-Live Qualifying Page.
    Qualifying Re-Air: 8:00pm/et on Speed Channel.

  • How did the non Top-35 teams do in the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway practice Friday? Eight will get in and four will get out:
    #00-Kenny Wallace - 183.515, 44th overall, 10th of non top-35 teams, fastest 8 will get in
    #09-Johnny Sauter - 185.402, 33rd, 4th
    #1-Martin Truex Jr. - 184.619. 42nd, 9th
    #4-Mike Wallace - 185.183, 35th, 5th
    #7-Robby Gordon - 183.413, 46th, 12th
    #23-Mike Skinner - 187.006, 18th, 2nd
    #32-Bobby Hamilton Jr. - 184.679, 41st, 8th
    #33-Kerry Earnhardt - 186.347, 23rd, 3rd
    #36-Boris Said - 187.599, 6th, 1st
    #37-Kevin Lepage - 185.108, 37th, 6th
    #66-Hermie Sadler - 184.897, 40th, 7th
    #92-Stanton Barrett - 183.508, 45th, 11th
    (4-29-2005)

  • Friday Practice for the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway is over, the fastest:
    #10-Riggs 188.719
    #24-Gordon 188.289
    #38-Sadler 188.100
    #21-Rudd 187.897
    #97-Busch 187.651
    slowest: #49-Schrader 182.32 and #7-Gordon 183.413
    most laps run: #23-Skinner and #41-Mears. 20
    Best average speed [all laps averaged]
    (from NASCAR.com's leaderboard service)
    #24-Gordon, 177.989 [2nd fastest lap], 8 laps run
    #23-Skinner, 177.955 [17th], 20 laps
    #10-Riggs, 177.915 [1st], 12 laps
    See speeds and links on my Jayski's Talladega Qualifying/Grid/Practice Page.(4-29-2005)

  • Qualifying Order for the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway is up, 47 drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, #97-Kurt Busch is due out first, the last driver scheduled out is #92-Stantona Barrett. For the Qualifying order, see my Jayski's Talladega Qualifying/Grid/Practice Page or NASCAR.com.(4-29-2005)

  • Rookie News and Notes

  • Entry List for the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway is up, 47 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 - 8 race team attempts:
    #7-Robby Gordon (full-time 2005 planned)
    #32-Bobby Hamilton Jr. (full-time 2005 planned)
    #34-Randy LaJoie (full-time 2005 planned) - withdrew?
    #37-Kevin Lepage (full-time 2005 planned)
    #66-Hermie Sadler (full-time 2005 planned)
    #92-Stanton Barrett (full-time 2005 planned)
    Not in top 35 of owners points - less then 8 attempts
    #00-Kenny Wallace (part-time sched)(1 attempt) #09-Johnny Sauter (part-time sched)(4 attempts)
    #23-Mike Skinner (part-time sched)(1 attempt)
    #33-Kerry Earnhardt (limited sched)(2 attempts)
    #36-Boris Said (limited sched)(2 attempts)
    For the full list see my Jayski's Talladega Entry List, 47 cars entered. (4-28-2005)

  • Entry List Page:
    Jayski's Talladega Entry List, 47 cars entered

  • 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:
    Teams May:
    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.
    Teams May:
    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:
    ESPN.com
    MotorsportsOne
    NASCAR.com


TRACK RECORDS, NOTES, RULES and NEWS

  • WHO'S HOT heading to Talladega:
    • Roush Racing drivers have won four of the eight races in 2005. Hendrick Mororsports drivers have scored three victories and Richard Childress Racing has scored one.
    • Jimmie Johnson has 13 top-10 finishes in the 14 races since Charlotte last October. Johnson is the only driver to score top-10 finishes in seven of the eight races in 2005.
    • Kurt Busch has scored four top-five finishes in 2005, second only to Jimmie Johnson who has five.
    • Greg Biffle and Kurt Busch have each scored five top-10 finishes in eight races this season.
    • Jeff Gordon has climbed from 12th to fourth in the point standings in the last three races.
    • Dale Earnhardt Jr. has climbed from 27th to 12th in the points in the last five races.(NASCAR Statistical Services)(4-25-2005)

  • Track/Event Qualifying Record (no restrictor plate): Bill Elliott, April 1987, 212.809mph

  • Track/Event Qualifying Record (Restrictor Plate): Bill Elliott, May 1990, 199.388 (15/16th inch plate)

  • Last Year's Pole Sitter: Ricky Rudd, 191.180mph, finished 17th.

  • 2004 Race Winner: Jeff Gordon, 129.395mph, started 11th

  • Track Race Record: Mark Martin, May 1997, 188.354mph

  • Slowest Race Record: Jeff Gordon, April 25, 2004, 129.396mph

  • Most Wins: 10 - Dale Earnhardt

  • Most Wins - Active Driver: 4 - Dale Earnhardt Jr.

  • Most Poles - All Time: 8, Bill Elliott

  • Most Poles - Active Driver: 3, Jeremy Mayfield; Sterling Marlin

  • Most Top 5s: 23 - Dale Earnhardt

  • Most Top 10s: 27 - Dale Earnhardt

  • Oldest Winner: Harry Gant, 52 years, 3 months, 26 days, May 1991

  • Youngest Winner: Bobby Hillin Jr., 22 years, 1 months, 22 days, July 1986

  • Most Laps Led by a Leader: Pete Hamilton, August 1970, 153 laps

  • Fewest Laps Led by a Race Winner: 3 - twice, most recently Bobby Hamilton 4/22/2001

  • Most Lead Changes: 75 - 5/6/1984

  • Fewest Lead Changes: 13 - 5/6/1973

  • Most Cautions: 11, 4/25/2004

  • Most Caution Laps: 62, 5/7/1972

  • Fewest Cautions: 0 - three times, most recent 10/6/2002

  • Fewest Caution Laps: 0 - three times, most recent 10/6/2002

  • Most Running at the Finish: 40 - 4/22/2001

  • Fewest Running at the Finish: 14 - 7/27/1986

  • Most Wins by Manufacturer: 28 - Chevy

  • Worst Starting Spot to Win: Jeff Gordon, April 2000, started 36th

  • Races won from starting pos 1: 12 [of 70] 17.1%
  • Races won from starting pos 2: 16, 22.9%
  • Races won from starting pos 3: 6
  • Races won from starting pos 4: 6
  • Races won from starting pos 5: 3
  • Races won from starting pos 6: 3
  • Races won from starting pos 7: 2
  • Races won from starting pos 8: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 9: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 10: 2
  • Races won from starting pos 11: 3
  • 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: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 16: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 17: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 18: 2
  • Races won from starting pos 20: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 22: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 24: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 27: 1
  • Races won from starting pos 36: 1
  • Races won from the top 5: 43 of 71 - 60.6%
  • Races won from the top 10: 52 of 71 - 73.2%

  • Talladega Nuggets
    Career Milestones • Ricky Rudd is expected to make his 761st consecutive career start this week at Talladega Superspeedway, extending the all-time record for consecutive starts by a NASCAR driver.
    • Ryan Newman is expected to make his 125th NASCAR NEXTEL CUP career start this week at Talladega Superspeedway. Another Mark for Rudd
    Ricky Rudd is expected to make his 57th start at Talladega Superpeedway. He is second for the most starts all-time at Talladega, four races behind Dave Marcis (61). Rudd’s best finish at Talladega (third) has occurred four times, most recently in October 2002.
    Strong Starter at Talladega Superspeedway... and It’s NOT Newman...
    Jimmie Johnson has posted five top-10 starts in six races at Talladega. Johnson posted his worst start at Talladega last fall when he started 16th.
    Recent Starting Success at Talladega Superspeedway
    Dale Jarrett has posted three straight top-10 starts at Talladega Superspeedway, the longest current streak among active drivers.
    Talladega Sweeps
    There have been six seasons with sweeps at Talladega since the track first began twice-a-year races in 1970. Three of those sweeps were posted by an Earnhardt. Dale Jr., posted the most recent in 2002; his father won both races in 1999 and 1990. Darrell Waltrip (1982), Buddy Baker (1975) and Pete Hamilton (1970) are the other drivers to sweep Talladega.

    Top 10 Lap Leaders at Talladega
    Driver Starts Laps Led
    1. Earnhardt, Dale 44, 1,377
    2. Baker, Buddy 43, 1,137
    3. Allison, Bobby 37, 703
    4. Waltrip, Darrell 55, 666
    5. Yarborough, Cale 34, 593
    6. Elliott, Bill 54, 526
    7. Gordon, Jeff 24, 501
    8. Earnhardt Jr., Dale 10, 489
    9. Allison, Davey 15, 469
    10. Marlin, Sterling 43, 437

    Winning From Up Front at Talladega... A Changing Trend
    28 of the 71 races at Talladega have been won from a front-row starting position (39-percent). However, nine of the last 12 races at Talladega have been won from starting positions of 11th or lower. The last front-row victory at Talladega came in April 1998 when Bobby Labonte won the spring race there from the Bud pole, 14 races ago.
    Talladega Done Dale Earnhardt Jr., posted four straight Talladega victories (fall 2001 through spring 2003) and finished second in the next two races followed by another victory there last October. Earnhardt Jr., has led in all nine of his 10 races at the Alabama superspeedway. His 7.3 average finish is the best of all active drivers at Talladega.

    Different Winners at Talladega
    After Dale Earnhardt Jr., won four straight between the fall of 2001 and spring of 2003, there have been three different winners in the last three races at Talladega Superspeedway.
    Richard Childress - Winning Car Owner at Talladega
    Richard Childress-owned cars have scored nine victories at Talladega, the most of any car owner. All nine were scored by Dale Earnhardt. Earnhardt’s first Talladega victory was in a Bud Moore-owned Ford in July 1983. Talladega Streaks
    • Dale Earnhardt Jr. has finished first or second in his last seven races at Talladega superspeedway.
    • Kevin Harvick has scored four consecutive top-10 finishes at Talladega.
    • Robby Gordon has scored two consecutive top-10 finishes at Talladega.

    Manufacturer Dominance
    A Chevrolet has won the last 12 races at Talladega superspeedway, a streak that began in 1999. And Beat Goes On
    Kevin Harvick (eight), Jamie McMurray (five), Greg Biffle (four), Scott Wimmer (three), Mike Bliss (two), Scott Riggs (two), Jason Leffler (two) and Kasey Kahne (two) are the active drivers that have been running at the finish in all of their races at Talladega. Selected Talladega Records
    • Bill Elliott leads all drivers with eight Bud Poles in 54 races at Talladega. Elliott won six straight Bud Poles at Talladega (1985-1987).
    • Dale Earnhardt scored 10 victories in his 44 races at Talladega, five more than Dale Earnhardt Jr., his nearest competitor.
    • Terry Labonte leads all active drivers with 14 top-five finishes in 52 races at Talladega superspeedway.
    • Terry Labonte has scored 23 top-10 finishes at Talladega, more than any other active driver at Talladega.
    • Jeff Gordon has led 501 laps at Talladega superspeedway, more than any other active driver. Gordon has led in 19 of his 24 races there.
    • Jimmie Johnson has a 6.0 starting average in six races at Talladega superspeedway, the best among all active drivers.
    • Dale Earnhardt Jr. has a 7.3 average finish in 10 races at Talladega superspeedway, the best among active drivers.
    Skunked at Talladega
    Ricky Rudd has competed in 56 races at Talladega superspeedway without scoring a victory.

    One-Timers at Talladega
    There have been eight first-time race winners at Talladega. However there has not been a first-time winner at Talladega since 1988 when Ken Schrader won his first career race. Six of those eight drivers never won another NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race.

    Not Much Margin of Victory at Talladega
    The last margin of victory at Talladega that exceeded one second was in May 1991 when Harry Gant won by 11.0 seconds over Darrell Waltrip.
    Restrictor-Plate Races - Active Driver Records - (Daytona and Talladega since 1988)
    Starts Mark Martin, Ricky Rudd, Ken Schrader, Rusty Wallace and Michael Waltrip - 69
    Poles Sterling Marlin – 7 in 68 races (10 percent)
    Wins Jeff Gordon – 9 in 49 races (17 percent)
    Top-Fives Jeff Gordon and Sterling Marlin – 20 each
    Top-10s Mark Martin – 34 in 69 races (49 percent)
    Laps Led Sterling Marlin – 1,004 in 68 races
    Starting Average Dale Earnhardt Jr. – 9.86 in 21 races
    Finishing Average Dale Earnhardt Jr. – 9.95 in 21 races
    DEI Restrictor Plate Dominance
    DEI is the acknowledged master of the restrictor-plate tracks having won 11 times in the last 17 races on the two 'big' tracks since 2001. Dale Earnhardt Jr. has won in over one-third of his career restrictor-plate starts, scoring seven victories in 21 races. All of these wins have been achieved in his last 16 plate races. Last season he was the only driver to score a top-five finish in all four restrictor-plate races; two of those were victories.

    Restrictor-Plate Shut out
    Of the six drivers who have competed in all 69 restrictor plate races (since 1988), Rusty Wallace and Ricky Rudd are the only drivers without a restrictor-plate race victory.

    Season Nuggets
    Talladega May Spell Trouble for Some of the Top 10
    • First-place Jimmie Johnson has scored only one top-10 finish in his last five races at Talladega Superspeedway. His other four finishes were all 15th or worse.
    • Third-place Greg Biffle has finished 15th or worse in all four of his races at Talladega.
    • Fifth-place Elliott Sadler has posted three straight finishes of 22nd or worse at Talladega
    • Sixth-place Mark Martin has scored only one top-10 finish in his last six races at Talladega Superspeedway. His other five finishes were all 15th or worse.
    • Ninth-place Sterling Marlin has not scored a top-10 finish in his last nine races at Phoenix.
    • Tenth-place Rusty Wallace has scored only one top-10 finish in his last five races at Talladega Superspeedway. His other four finishes were all 13th or worse.

    . Defending NEXTEL Cup Champion at Talladega
    Kurt Busch has competed in eight races at Talladega scoring five top-10 finishes, all sixth or better.

    Point Leader at Talladega
    Jimmie Johnson has finished 34th or worse in three of his six races at Talladega. His other three finishes were all top 15s.

    Starting Up Front Never Hurt
    Only Ryan Newman has started every race in 2005 from a top-10 starting position.

    Streaks
    • With his 15th-place finish at Phoenix, Jimmie Johnson ended a 13-race streak of consecutive top-10 finishes that began at Charlotte last October.
    • Mark Martin has been running at the finish in 30 consecutive races, the longest current streak.

    Get Those Bonus Points
    Greg Biffle is the only driver to lead at least one lap in six of the eight races in 2005.

    Maintaining a Top-10 Standard
    • Kurt Busch has ranked in the top-10 of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series point standings for 43 consecutive races since Rockingham in February 2004, the longest current streak.

    • Kurt Busch, Jimmie Johnson, Mark Martin and Rusty Wallace have each ranked in the top 10 in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup point standings after every race in 2005.

    2005 Struggles
    • Matt Kenseth ranks 28th in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup point standings after eight races in 2005. One year ago he was third.
    • Bobby Labonte (34th) and Robby Gordon (39th) have each posted four DNFs in eight races in 2005, more than all other drivers. Labonte ranked 12th and Gordon was 25th in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup point standings one year ago.
    2005 Superspeedway Standouts
    In the first six superspeedway races in 2005:
    • Most Points Earned - Jimmie Johnson - 963 (45 more than Kurt Busch)
    • Most Bud Poles –Ryan Newman (three)
    • Most Victories – Greg Biffle (two)
    • Most Top-fives –Jimmie Johnson (five)
    • Most Top-10s – Jimmie Johnson and Kurt Busch (five)
    • Most Races Led –Greg Biffle (five)
    • Winning Manufacturers – Ford (four); Chevrolet (two).(NASCAR Statistical Services)(4-25-2005)


TRACK/RACE NEWS

  • Track Specs:
    Track/Race Length: 2.66 mile quad oval, 188 laps, 500.08 miles
    Superspeedway: 2.66-mile trioval 48 feet wide (12-foot apron)
    Turns: Banking: 33 degrees Length: 3,750 feet Radius: 1,100 feet
    Trioval: Banking: 18 degrees
    Frontstretch: Chute length: 2,150 feet (from turn to middle of trioval) Total length: 4,300 feet Banking: Minimal for drainage only
    Backstretch: Length: 4,000 feet Banking: Minimal for drainage only
    Pit Road: Length: 3,000 feet; Width: 48 feet
    Pit Road Speed: 55mph; Caution Car: 70mph
    Grandstand Seating: 143,000

  • Track Homepage: www.talladegasuperspeedway.com

  • Last Year: see my 2004 Talladega Spring Race Info Page.

  • Seats at the Aaron's 499 at Talladega sold out: Talladega Superspeedway President Grant Lynch announced that the Aaron's 499 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race is sold out. The track, which has a seating capacity of 143,000, one of the largest capacities on the NASCAR circuit, has sold all available grandstand seats and all infield overnight parking spaces for tomorrow's race. "Thanks to our loyal fans, Talladega Superspeedway continues to be one of the most popular venues and sought-after tickets in motorsports," Lynch said. "We have the most exciting, competitive races in NASCAR and we are thrilled that tomorrow we will have a capacity crowd." Fans who do not have tickets can still purchase one day infield admission tickets for the Aaron's 499.(Talladega Superspeedway)(5-1-2005)

  • Heavy Winds at Talladega predicted/Weather warning from EMA: Campers and race fans have a lot more speed to watch out for this weekend than just what’s happening at the Talladega Superspeedway. A warning from the National Weather Service in Birmingham has predicted 20 to 30 mph winds during the day Friday and some gusts up to 60 and 70 mph late that afternoon until midnight. There’s also a slight chance for severe thunderstorms Friday and early Saturday morning. "The Talladega County Emergency Management Agency will sound the three nearest outdoor warning sirens that surround the speedway with the normal test siren tone followed by a public address to advise those camping of the approaching weather should winds begin to gust as high as predicted," according to a press release from the EMA. The speedway has advised campers to secure awnings, trash cans, tents, barbecue grills and other items that could become airborne by tying down such objects or putting them away. "Do not wait until the storm arrives to try and secure items," the press release states. "Please make your preparations to day or this evening for your safety and the safety of all citizens and race fans." Because the predicted winds are so severe, tornadoes and straight-line winds are a threat. Campers, keep your ears tuned in for the sirens and to weather radios in case warning severe weather.(Daily Home via Catchfence)(4-29-2005)

  • Talladega Introduces Pepsi/Winn-Dixie Kids Zone: Talladega Superspeedway officials recently annunced the latest free perk for this new generation of NASCAR fans - a brand new Pepsi/Winn-Dixie Kids Zone to be open for the first time on Saturday, April 30 and Sunday, May 1 of the upcoming Aaron's Dream Weekend. The Pepsi/Winn-Dixie Kids Zone will be located in Talladega Superspeedway's new corporate display area close to the North Tunnel of the track. The area is dedicated exclusively to kids and will feature four inflatable rides, entertainment from clowns and face painting. The new area will be open both Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. until the start of the race each day.
    Tickets to the 2005 Aaron's Dream Weekend at Talladega Superspeedway April 28 - May 1 are available by calling the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office at 1-877-Go2-DEGA (1-877-462-3342) Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. CDT, or by visiting us online at www.talladegasuperspeedway.com. For our hearing impaired guests, please call TDD 1-866-ISC-TRAK (1-866-472-8725). You may also purchase tickets in person at Talladega Superspeedway's Ticket Office from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. CDT, Monday through Friday.(Talladega Superspeedway)(4-28-2005)

  • Bob Riley, Governor of the State of Alabama, has proclaimed April 29, 2005, as Race Fever Day in the State of Alabama.(4-27-2005)

  • Water boy? Opera Man? Adam Sandler Grand Marshal at Talladega: Adam Sandler, star of the upcoming comedy "The Longest Yard," which will be released nationally on Memorial Day weekend, will serve as the Grand Marshal of the May 1st Aaron's 499 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway. Sandler will participate in pre-race activities at NASCAR's Most Competitive Track and then issue the most famous words in racing, "Gentlemen, Start Your Engines." The former Saturday Night Live star has portrayed roles in over a dozen movies, but has made a name for himself starring in blockbuster comedies such as "Happy Gilmore," "The Wedding Singer," "50 First Dates" and "The Waterboy" to name just a few. In his new movie, "The Longest Yard," Sandler will play a pro quarterback doing time in the same prison with a former college football champion and coach portrayed by Burt Reynolds. In this remake of the 1974 original, the pair takes on the task of putting together a football team comprised of inmates to take on the guards at the facility. Co-starring in the film will be Chris Rock, James Cromwell, Nelly and William Fichtner.
    Tickets to the 2005 Aaron's Dream Weekend at Talladega Superspeedway April 28 - May 1 are available by calling the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office at 1-877-Go2-DEGA (1-877-462-3342) Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. CDT, or by visiting us online at www.talladegasuperspeedway.com. You may also purchase tickets in person at Talladega Superspeedway's Ticket Office from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. CDT, Monday through Friday.(Talladega Superspeedway)(4-20-2005)

  • New 'Talladega On Wheels' Makes Its Way Through Region: Race fans are now able to taste the excitement of Talladega Superspeedway in their own hometowns with the recent introduction of a new promotional vehicle dubbed "Talladega On Wheels." The 43-foot trailer has already been spotted on the highways and at various locations throughout Alabama and Georgia in the past couple of weeks - not surprising because it's hard to miss. The massive promotional unit is splashed with images of the exhilarating racing action at Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR's Most Competitive Track. When the vehicle stops, out come the loudspeakers, two television screens airing race footage and interactive racing video games, Talladega Superspeedway merchandise, and informational materials on the track and ticket availability. In many cases, Talladega On Wheels also brings along the track's No. 24 Jeff Gordon Pepsi show car and the tire changing machine, enabling fans to get an up-close look at a real race car as well as to test their pit crew ability in changing tires.
    Talladega Superspeedway named Ty Gardner of Oxford, AL as its new Group Sales and Promotions Coordinator, with Talladega On Wheels appearances chief among his duties. Gardner is a 2000 graduate of Jacksonville State University, where he earned a degree in marketing. Gardner has worked with the team at Talladega Superspeedway for the past several years, first as an intern with the marketing department, and then as a seasonal employee assisting during race time.(Talladega Superspeedway)(3-29-2005)

  • Talladega Scoring Tower Work starts: Construction began recently on Talladega Superspeedway's new 148-foot scoring tower, set to be completed in time for the 2005 Aaron's Dream Weekend April 28 - May 1 at NASCAR's Most Competitive Track. The tower is centrally located in the track's infield, providing fans with a state-of-the-art tool to keep up with the high volume of lead changes for which the track is widely known.(Talladega Superspeedway)(3-27-2005)

  • Tickets Available for First Ever UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega: Tickets are available to everyone for the first ever UAW-Ford 500 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series event at Talladega Superspeedway. Returning fans have had the opportunity to renew and upgrade their seats, and now the opportunity is open to all race fans to claim their spots for race three in the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup. UAW-Ford 500 Weekend on-track action kicks off on Thursday, Sept. 29 with Alabama Beef Producers Qualifying Day for the Food World 300 ARCA RE/MAX Series race on Saturday. On Friday, Sept. 30, the stars of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series will zoom around the track during Discount Food Mart Qualifying Day, setting the field for Sunday's UAW-Ford 500. On Saturday, Oct. 1, fans will see the rising stars of the ARCA RE/MAX Series duke it out around the 2.66-mile tri-oval seeking a win of the series season finale, the Food World 300. On Sunday, Oct. 2, racing enthusiasts will be treated to the unparalleled excitement of the fierce competition in the first ever UAW-Ford 500, race three into the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup. Call the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office for more information or to order at 1-877-Go2-DEGA (1-877-462-3342) Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. CDT, or visit online at www.talladegasuperspeedway.com. More information on reserving a spot in Talladega's overnight parks and reserved infield area is also available online or by calling the Ticket Office.(Talladega Superspeedway)(3-17-2005)

  • Additons at Talladega: Talladega Superspeedway Vice President/General Manager Rick Humphrey announced the recent addition of Catie Christian and Jody Weldon to the track's Marketing Department. Christian has been named Hospitality Sales and Operations Coordinator, and Weldon has been named Marketing Coordinator. As Hospitality Sales and Operations Coordinator, Christian will be responsible for the sales and operations of suites, the hospitality village and corporate display area of the track. Weldon will be responsible for individual hospitality sales and operations as well as various organizational tasks within the marketing department. A native of Pinson, Ala., Weldon will graduate from The University of Alabama in May 2005, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in communications and information sciences with a major in advertising and a dual minor in marketing and English. Weldon returns to the marketing department at Talladega Superspeedway after a successful internship at the track in the summer and early fall of 2004.(Talladega Superspeedway)(3-17-2005)

  • New Scoring Tower at Talladega Superspeedway: A giant, state-of-the-art scoring tower will rise soon from the infield at Talladega Superspeedway, just in time to enable fans here for the Aaron's Dream Weekend April 28-May 1 to keep up with the high volume of lead changes for which NASCAR's Most Competitive Track is widely known. The mammoth, 148-foot tower will be centrally located and will display scoring in a format standard to stock car racing, with the length of the tower emphasizing in bright lights the lap number and the numbers of the top 10 cars contending for the lead each lap. At the bottom of the row, the positions of the remainder of the field will progress in sets within two additional spaces. Flood lights will shine brightly atop the tower, showcasing rotating signage emblazoned with select sponsor logos. "We hold the record for having the most lead changes in a race, and we had more than 100 of them combined from our two NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races last year," said Talladega Superspeedway Vice President/General Manager Rick Humphrey. "Racing here is so close, tracking the field is especially important. This new scoring tower will allow fans to do that, so it will be a particularly useful improvement at our facility." Talladega Superspeedway holds the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series all-time record for most lead changes in a race (75 in the spring of 1984) and most leaders in a race (26, most recently in the spring of 2001), establishing it as NASCAR's Most Competitive Track. NASCAR.COM fans recently voted Talladega Superspeedway the Track with the Most Exciting Racing Action in 2004, and it's a standard the track will no doubt uphold throughout the exciting 2005 racing season as well. The season kicks off with the 2005 Aaron's Dream Weekend, set for April 29 - May 1. The 2005 Aaron's Dream Weekend includes Winn-Dixie Qualifying Day Presented by Pepsi for the NASCAR Busch Series on April 28, The Birmingham News/Birmingham Post-Herald Qualifying Day for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series on April 29, the Aaron's 312 NASCAR Busch Series race on April 30 and the Aaron's 499 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race on May 1. On Thursday, Friday and Saturday, children age 11 and younger are admitted free of charge when accompanied by a ticketed adult. Tickets to these events are available by calling the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office at 1-877-Go2-DEGA (1-877-462-3342) Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. CDT, or by visiting us online at www.talladegasuperspeedway.com. More information on reserving a spot in Talladega's overnight parks and reserved infield area is also available online or by calling the Ticket Office. For our hearing impaired guests, please call TDD 1-866-ISC-TRAK (1-866-472-8725). You may also purchase tickets in person at Talladega Superspeedway's Ticket Office from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. CDT, Monday through Friday (Talladega Superspeedway PR)(3-9-2005)

  • Talladega Superspeedway Unveils New Web Site Design: Although Talladega Superspeedway is steeped in 35 years of rich history and tradition, its presence on the World Wide Web has enabled it to progress within a technological age that seems to evolve as quickly as cars zipping around the legendary track. Now that presence has been remarkably enhanced through a new, cutting-edge web site design launched Tuesday, March 1 at www.talladegasuperspeedway.com. The redesigned www.talladegasuperspeedway.com features a new layout, color scheme and dynamic navigation, making it easier to locate important track information. The home page is more streamlined, focused on providing easier access to tickets, maps of the facility's many overnight parking options and other important information for race fans planning to visit during our two major event weekends. In addition, historical information and statistics, expanded color photo galleries and new, downloadable wallpapers will be available for fans to view. The new site also incorporates an improved "search" function, putting fans just one click away from just about everything they could ever want to know about NASCAR's Most Competitive Track.(Talladega Superspeedway PR)(3-4-2005)

  • NASCAR.COM Fans: Talladega Superspeedway Has Most Exciting Racing Action: Talladega Superspeedway already holds the distinction of being NASCAR's Most Competitive Track, and now a legion of NASCAR fans have voted it the "Track With the Most Exciting Racing Action" for 2004. The accolade is a result the 2004 NASCAR.COM Fan's Voice Awards, which consisted of 19 separate categories. Historically, Talladega Superspeedway holds records for both the most lead changes in a race (75 in the spring of 1984) as well as the highest number of leaders in a race (26 on two separate occasions, most recently in the fall of 2001.) Last year, the two NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races at Talladega Superspeedway produced over 100 lead changes and 31 different drivers led at least one lap at the world-famous 2.66-mile tri-oval. The track's 35th Anniversary Celebration as well as the fall event's status as race three in the inaugural 10-race Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup championship format only compounded the electric energy of competition at Talladega Superspeedway in 2004. Talladega Superspeedway has yet another season of out-of-your-seat and on-your-feet racing action planned for race fans with the Aaron's Dream Weekend set for April 28 - May 1 and the UAW-Ford 500 Weekend set for Sept. 29 - Oct. 2. The 2005 Aaron's Dream Weekend features Winn-Dixie Qualifying Day Presented by Pepsi for the NASCAR Busch Series on Thursday, April 28, The Birmingham News/Birmingham Post-Herald Qualifying Day for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series on Friday, April 29, the Aaron's 312 NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday, April 30 and the Aaron's 499 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race on Sunday, May 1. Tickets to these events are available by calling the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office at 1-877-Go2-DEGA (1-877-462-3342)(Talladega Superspeedway PR)(2-25-2005)

  • Talladega gets a race sponsor for fall race:Leaders from the United Auto Workers (UAW) and Ford Motor Company joined today with Talladega Superspeedway to announce that the fall NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series event at Talladega Superspeedway will be known as the UAW-Ford 500, beginning in 2005. The race entitlement is part of a multi-year agreement between the entities that also establishes Ford as the official car and truck of the historic Alabama racetrack. The natural relationship between Ford Motor Company and the racing industry can be traced back to the automobile's origins, for as soon as men could create cars it seemed they wanted to race them. Before company founder Henry Ford became a household name for designing the affordable Model T in 1908, he had already been winning races for several years prior in other models he'd designed, starting with a 1901 victory on a one-mile oval at the Detroit Driving Club in Grosse Pointe, MI. Ford's history in NASCAR can be traced back to the very first Grand National (now NEXTEL Cup) Series event, when Jim Roper drove his Lincoln to victory in Charlotte on June 19, 1949. Ford also holds a special place in Talladega Superspeedway history as the vehicle in which Bill Elliott set an all-time 212.809 mph NASCAR qualifying speed record here. The all-time NASCAR race speed record was also set in a Ford at Talladega, when Mark Martin won the 1997 Winston 500 at an average speed of 188.354 mph.
    Tickets to the Oct. 2 UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Superspeedway, race three in the 2005 Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup, go on sale March 7 and may be purchased by calling 1-877-Go2-DEGA (1-877-462-3342) Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. CDT, or by visiting us online at www.talladegasuperspeedway.com. More information on reserving a spot in Talladega's overnight parks and reserved infield area is also available online or by calling the Ticket Office. For our hearing impaired guests, please call TDD 1-866-ISC-TRAK (1-866-472-8725). You may also purchase tickets in person at Talladega Superspeedway's Ticket Office 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. CDT, Monday - Friday.(Talladega Superspeedway PR)(2-22-2005)

  • Kids Free at Talladega Race Weekend, Thurs-Fri-Sat: Talladega Superspeedway will admit children absolutely free of charge for three of the four days of its race weekends. Kids age 11 and younger will be admitted to the grandstands at no cost when accompanied by a ticketed adult Thursday, April 28 through Saturday, April 30. That means that kids 11 and younger can witness - for free - Winn-Dixie Qualifying Day presented by Pepsi on Thursday, which sets the field for the Aaron's 312 NASCAR Busch Series race, The Birmingham News/Birmingham Post-Herald Qualifying Day on Friday, which sets the field for the Aaron's 499 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race on Sunday, and the Saturday Aaron's 312 NASCAR Busch Series race. Kids age 11 and younger will again be admitted free of charge to the bulk of on-track events when the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series returns in the fall along with the ARCA RE/MAX Series. Tickets to the Aaron's Dream Weekend April 28 - May 1 are available by calling the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office at 1-877-Go2-DEGA (1-877-462-3342) or by visiting www.talladegasuperspeedway.com.(Talladega Superspeedway)(2-15-2005)

  • Talladega honors Labonte, Martin, Wallace: When three veteran NASCAR drivers announced last year their intentions to bring their full-time NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series careers to a close, Talladega Superspeedway officials immediately sought a way to honor them appropriately. Terry Labonte, Mark Martin and Rusty Wallace all have played significant roles in the 35-year-old track's rich history, and now race fans will have the opportunity to purchase collectible qualifying day tickets honoring their impressive careers, Talladega Superspeedway Vice President/General Manager Rick Humphrey announced today. Only 5,500 of the tickets will be printed, with each granting admission to The Birmingham News/Birmingham Post-Herald Qualifying Day on Friday, April 29, during which the field will be set for the May 1 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Aaron's 499. These colorful, limited-edition souvenirs feature current and retro photos of each of the drivers, and cost $10 - the same price as a regular walk-up grandstand admission ticket for qualifying day.(Talladega Superspeedway PR)(1-25-2005)

  • TSS Honors Larry Johnson for 35 Years of Service: Before the first sounds of roaring engines filled the air and the first green flag fell at Talladega Superspeedway, Larry Johnson was hard at work at the now legendary track. The entire staff of Talladega Superspeedway gathered Thursday to honor Johnson, who has been employed at the facility for all of its historic 35 years of existence. Johnson, who today works in the Superspeedway's Maintenance Department, officially began working for TSS on Sept. 2, 1969. Prior to that day, he played a part in bringing NASCAR founder William H.G. France's ambitious 2.66-mile dream to reality as an employee with Moss-Thornton, the Alabama construction firm that built the track. Johnson was hired by then-superintendent Red Pugh, who came from Daytona to oversee maintenance at Talladega Superspeedway. Twelve days after he was hired, Johnson witnessed the first NASCAR race at the new facility on Sept. 14, 1969 - the inaugural Talladega 500. At the surprise presentation, Talladega Superspeedway President Grant Lynch introduced Johnson by first recalling several signs of the times in 1969, from popular music to the cost of the average automobile 35 years ago. Lynch read a letter sent by International Speedway Corporation President Lesa D. Kennedy in which Kennedy personally thanked Johnson on behalf of ISC management as well as the France family. Lynch then thanked Johnson, asking him and his wife, Alice, to join him and Talladega Superspeedway Vice President/General Manager Rick Humphrey before the assembled employees for the presentation of gifts, a special holiday bonus and a cake commemorating his service. Johnson received a standing ovation. Johnson, who served as superintendent during part of his tenure here, said he never dreamed he'd experience such a long and fulfilling career in one place, adding that it has been the people surrounding him that have made it happen. He said the special presentation was not only an honor but a complete surprise, with his suspicion raised only when he arrived at what he thought was a facility-wide holiday meeting and saw that his wife was there, too. The Johnsons reside in Talladega County and have five children: sons Lonnie Herrington and Larry Dale Johnson, and daughters Renee Perley, Dana Phillips and Vicki Johnson.(Talladega Superspeedway PR)(12-19-2004)

  • Past track news: posted in the past at Jayski's Past Track News/Rumors - Talladega Superspeedway


DRIVER/TEAM/TESTING NEWS

  • #00 Team in trouble? Kenny Wallace's #00 team could be in big trouble with NASCAR after inspectors at Talladega Superspeedway confiscated a trick rear-end housing from the team, owned by Michael Waltrip. A fine is expected, and some speculate it'll be $50,000, because the design might be considered a safety issue.(Winston Salem Journal), the team failed to qualify for the race.(4-30-2005)

  • Window Nets Confiscated: The window nets were confiscated from the cars driven by #99-Carl Edwards, #11-Jason Leffler, #0-Mike Bliss, #19-Jeremy Mayfield and #17-Matt Kenseth because the openings in the meshing were smaller than NASCAR's one-inch minimum. Smaller holes allow less air inside the car. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)(4-30-2005)

  • #66 to run Aaron's decals: Michael Waltrip, who owns the #00 Aaron's Rent Chevy that Kenny Wallace attempted to get into the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway but failed to qualify for, said that #66 Hermie Sadler would run the Aaron's decals on Sunday in the race.(Speed Channel's Trackside)(4-29-2005)

  • Labonte to make some Demo laps at Talladega: Labonte will drive demonstration laps in the #44 Doran Labonte Racing DORAN JE4 Pontiac Grand American Rolex Series car prior to NEXTEL Cup drivers’ introductions Sunday morning at Talladega. Labonte, along with brother, Terry, IRL IndyCar Series standout Brian Herta and road-racing star Jan Magnussen finished ninth with the car in the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona in February. Bobby Labonte will drive the car in three more Rolex events in 2005: the Brumos Porsche 250 June 29-30 at Daytona International Speedway, the 400-kilometer event July 29-31 at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala., and the Watkins Glen 200 Aug. 11-12 at Watkins Glen International. Events at Daytona and Watkins Glen are in conjunction with NEXTEL Cup Series events, while the Birmingham event is during the off-week between the Pennsylvania 500 and the Brickyard 400.(JGR)(4-27-2005)

  • Skinner to run the #23 at Talladega: Bill Davis Racing says it will enter Mike Skinner in the team's #23 Dodge in the May 1 Aaron's 499 Nextel Cup race at Talladega Superspeedway. Bad Boy Mowers Inc. will sponsor the entry for Skinner, who is driving for the team in the Craftsman Truck Series this year. Skinner also drove the car in the season-opening Daytona 500, where he finished 30th after being caught in a wreck.(NASCAR Scene Daily Newsletter)(4-13-2005)

  • See the 2005 Team Chart, which has links to past news for each team and info on each team.


PAINT SCHEME NEWS

    Car#/Driver Sponsor/Scheme/Promo Image Link
    #00-Kenny Wallace Aaron's 50th Anniversary - Gold #00 Schemes Page
    #9-Kasey Kahne Movie: The Longest Yard #9 Schemes Page
    #24-Jeff Gordon Star Wars/Pepsi #24 Schemes Page


  • Star Wars Schemes at Phoenix/Talladega: #38-Elliott Sadler, #88-Dale Jarrett and #24-Jeff Gordon will celebrate the opening (May 19, 2005) of Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith with special paint schemes scheduled to race at Phoenix [April 23rd]. Sadler's M&M's car will feature "The Dark Side" with the M&M's characters dressed up as Darth Vader and other members of the dark side. Jarrett will also have M&M's on his car? and will feature "The Good Side" with characters like R2-D2 and Princess Leia. No word yet on what Gordon will have on his car.(RacingOne)(12-9-2004)
    UPDATE: an image of the #24 Pepsi-Star Wars scheme with Yoda on the hood that will run at Talladega on the #24 Team Schemes page.(2-25-2005)

  • 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)


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