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  • Benson Associate UPDATE 1: Richfood, Inc., will announce Thursday that it is co-sponsoring Johnny Benson's #26 Cheerios Ford in the Exide 400 at Richmond International Raceway in September(Times-Dispatch)(3-30-1999) -- UPDATE 1: Richfood Holdings will appear on the trunk deck of Johnny Benson's (#26) Ford Taurus during the Sept. 11 Exide Batteries 400 at Richmond. The sponsorship, in conjunction with Truckers Renew A Commitment to Safety, was announced Thursday at the company's distribution center(Times-Dispatch)(4-4-1999)

  • Kenseth Cup Dates UPDATE 1: I hear the dates/races for Matt Kenseth to make his five race Winston Cup run in 1999 are: The 2nd races at - Michigan, Dover, Charlotte, Rockingham, and Atlanta. This will be in a Roush car under the Mark Martin Racing banner(The LTN Hour)(3-31-1999) -- UPDATE 1: Matt Kenseth will debut a Mark Martin Racing Ford Taurus August 22 in the Pepsi 400 at Michigan. The ride will be a first for the new Martin team with Kenseth, Martin's protégé, at the wheel. The drive represents a new direction for Martin as a car owner. The team will run chassis and engines provided by Jack Roush, home of Martin's Winston Cup effort. Kenseth is expected to run the Martin Racing Ford in five Winston Cup events this season. In addition to the Michigan bow, Kenseth will strap up at Dover (September 26), Charlotte (October 10), Rockingham (October 24) and Atlanta (November 21). The team will use the five runs to prepare for the 2000 NASCAR season when it will run the entire Winston Cup schedule(TNN)(4-3-1999)

  • TylerJet Truck? UPDATE 1: Hearing that Tyler Jet Motorsports will run a "Lucky Dog" 10-10-345 Truck at Martinsville in addition to the #45 Cup car. No word on a driver, but my guess would be Rich Bickle, their Cup driver(4-1-1999) -- UPDATE 1: Rich Bickle's Ford Truck is painted purple to match his 10-10-345 sponsored Cup #45 Pontiac. Bickle/Smith Motorsports, a partnership between Bickle and Florida businessman Ed Smith, will field the Truck. The team is housed in a new 20,000 square foot shop in Mooresville, NC. The Truck will carry the number 45. The racer is the same one Bickle, who has 52 career NCTS starts, drove to a fifth place finish at Martinsville last year. One of Bickle's three Truck Series career wins came at Martinsville in 1997. Bickle hopes to run the #45 Truck in three NCTS events this season, the other two at Memphis, TN, and Richmond, VA(TNN)(4-3-1999)

  • Elliott Changes: Bill Elliott Racing announced the following organizational changes: Citing personal reasons Joe Garone has resigned as crew chief. Jerry Pitts, who served as advisor to the crew chief, has been named interim crew chief, overseeing the #94 McDoanld's Drive-Thru Ford. Team engine builder Ernie Elliott will have additional responsibilities in his new role as race track performance supervisor. Pitts joined Bill Elliott Racing in 1998 as crew chief of the #13 Ford Taurus. Before entering the NASCAR Winston Cup series in 1995 for Bahari Racing, Pitts served as crew chief in the Craftsman Truck and Southwest Tour series. He is a native of Bakersfield, Calif. Ernie Elliott has long been regarded as one of the premier engine builders and has provided the power for his brother's race cars for all but three seasons (1992-94) in Bill's 24-year career. Ernie also served as his brother's crew chief for 13 seasons (1976-86 and 1988-89). During Ernie's tenure as crew chief, Bill won 26 races and the 1988 Winston Cup series championship. Ernie resides in Dawsonville, Ga. Garone, was named crew chief on Elliott's car following the 1997 season(McDonald's Team PR)(4-2-1999)

  • Earnhardt Paint UPDATE: Dale Earnhardt was supposed to run a "Taz" paint scheme for the Winston Select... That Car has been canceled......Due to the postponement of the introduction of the 2000 Chevrolet Monte Carlo..(The "Taz" Devil is a licensed trademark of Chevrolet) apparently Chevrolet had a big promotion planned with the "Taz" Devil & the New 2000 Monte Carlo .... A new paint scheme will be announced on 4/11/99(StockCarFans Newsletter) -- UPDATE: I hear it will be a Wrangler Paint Scheme(4-2-1999)

  • New Mark Martin Site: Race fans and truckers alike now have a new web site to add to their bookmark list: Mark Martin's J-Mar Express website. The site features up-to-date news about the racing career of NASCAR star Mark Martin, as well as information about Mark Martin's J-Mar Express, the Arkansas-based trucking company headed by Martin(PR)(4-2-1999)

  • Bickle Test UPDATE: Inclement weather has delayed Tyler Jet Motorsports' scheduled two-day test session at Greenville-Pickens Speedway(SC). The team had planned to test the 10-10-345 Pontiac at the 1/2 mile track on both Wednesday, March 31 and Thursday, April 1. Rich Bickle, driver of the 10-10-345 Pontiac, and the team will make another attempt to test tomorrow. Following the Greenville-Pickens test, the team will head to Southern National Speedway (Kenly, NC) for a Monday, April 5 test session.(Tyler Jet PR)(3-31-1999) -- UPDATE: I hear the team is there bright and early today to test(4-2-1999)

  • Martinsville Testing: was postponed Thursday as it rained. #21-Sadler; #43-Andretti; #30-Cope; #00-Jones; #60-G Bodine were scheduled to test. Cope, Andretti and Bodine plan testing on Friday(WC Today Radio), see some notes at Martinsville Speedway - Testing Notes(4-1-1999)

  • Bristol Testing: Darrell Waltrip and Wally Dallenbach tested at Brsitol today, no speeds(WC Today Radio)(4-1-1999)

  • Pardus Test: Dan Pardus and the #50 Midwest Transit Chevy team will be testing at Greenville Pickens(SC) Speedway on April 1(3-31-1999) -- Pardus had to cancel the test due to rain(4-1-1999)

  • Martinsville Testing Speeds: from Wednesday - #21-Sadler 93.327mph; #43-Andretti 93.052mph; #28-Irwin 93.281; #30-Cope 92.146; #00-Jones-92.146; #60-Geoffrey Bodine 91.522 (RPM2Nite)(4-1-1999)

  • Kenseth Cup Dates: I hear the dates/races for Matt Kenseth to make his five race Winston Cup run in 1999 are: The 2nd races at - Michigan, Dover, Charlotte, Rockingham, and Atlanta. This will be in a Roush car under the Mark Martin Racing banner(The LTN Hour)(3-31-1999)

  • Alabama Gang Museum: It was decided after an ALABAMA GANG BOARD Meeting on Monday March 15, 1999 that the drive is on and the pace is fast in efforts to get an ALABAMA GANG RACING MUSEUM built soon. For more info and how to send a donation, see (thanks Lynne)(3-31-1999)

  • UPDATE 3 on Spencer: I hear Jimmy Spencer has multiple bruises, extreme soreness, some swelling, and a possible broken hand or wrist(3-30-1999) -- UPDATE 2: Spencer has a slight concussion and is very sore, says the hit at Texas was the hardest he ever took. So far no broken bones, but Spencer will go for x-rays on Wednesday. Steve Grissom will test the #23 Winston Ford at Bristol on Thursday and at Talladega next week, Grissom will also drive Spencers #12 Zippo Chevy in the BGN race at Bristol(WC Today Radio), The JournalNow/PitNow says Darrell Waltrip will handle the tests -- UPDATE 3: Jimmy Spencer was to test the #23 Ford at Bristol Wednesday and Thursday while Darrell Waltrip tested the #66 Ford at Martinsville. But with Spencer banged up, team owner Travis Carter decided to send DW and the #66 Bristol instead. Also DW and the #66 then plan to test at Talladega next Tuesday and Wednesday(in the Ford test) The #23 team DID not test at Bristol(3-31-1999)

  • Testing UPDATE: Jeremy Mayfield tested the #12 Mobil One Ford at Martinsville on Monday and will again on Tuesday(WC Today Radio)(3-30-1999) -- UPDATE: Kenny Irwin tested the #28 Texaco Ford at Martinsville on Tuesday(WC Today Radio) and Geoffrey Bodine will be testing the #60 Power Team Chevy at Martinsville on Wednesday and Thursday(3-31-1999)

  • It's Back....UPDATE 7: Remember this rumor? Morgan-McClure 2nd Team? Hey, a wild one - hear that a second Morgan-McClure team effort is may still happen in 1999. The sponsor rumored is Microsoft. No word on a driver yet.(11-18-98) -- UPDATE 1: Hearing the 2nd Morgan-McClure team is close to fruition and we may hear something next week -- UPDATE 2: during an interview with Larry McClure by WC Today Radio, McClure said they would run a 2nd team on a limited basis only if a sponsor is found and only for 5-6 races on 1999 with an eye towards 2000 with a full-time schedule(12-22-98) -- UPDATE 3: I hear the team will attempt the Daytona 500 with an yet unnamed driver and possibly up to 15 1999 starts(12-29-98) -- UPDATE 4: The Microsoft rumor have proven to be false and they will not be the sponsor of the 2nd team, if it happens(12-31-98) -- UPDATE 5: Larry McClure is ready to launch that long-awaited second Winston Cup team. He's got three drivers under consideration and plans to make a decision by July 1. The sponsor? Possibly computer software giant Microsoft(PitNow)(3-29-1999) -- UPDATE 6: When asked during Tuesday's NOL chat about a possible teammate, Bobby Hamilton, driver of the #4 Kodak Morgan-McClure Chevy said - "It'll definitely help and we're definitely looking in that direction. Larry McClure and myself are looking, and he's asked me to start looking for drivers.....and at the end of the year we'll be able to make a decision on it."(in part from NOL chat) BUT on NASCAR Today Radio(MRN) a team spokesperson said there would be no second team this season, so go figure. Also during the NOL chat Hamilton also mentioned a possible different paint scheme at one of the night races and that the Advantix deal was a one race deal only -- UPDATE 7: From Sparky Plug at iRACE/SpeedVision - Owner Larry McClure said their shop can hold a 2nd team and with the proper sponsorship the 2nd team will run five races in 1999 to prepare for a full schedule in 2000. McClure was rumored to be in negotiations with Microsoft, but denied that allegation. He did say that he has secured a crew chief who is currently working in the Cup garage and has until July 1 to decide on a driver. Matt Kenseth was considered for the ride, but turned it down to concentrate on the Roush/Martin Cup deal(3-31-1999)

  • Martin 25th: Mark Martin will be celebrating the 25th anniversary of his first race when he drives his #6 Valvoline Ford in the Food City 500 at Bristol, April 11 (SpeedNet/Monte Dutton)(3-31-1999)

  • Common Templates: Gary Nelson, NASCAR Winston Cup director, says the sanctioning body is no longer considering a common template. NASCAR looked at making each car body the same as a way of making the cars even. An obstacle to that plan was that the identity of the Chevrolet, Ford and Pontiac bodies would be sacrificed(News-Record/The Depot)(3-31-1999)

  • Bodine/Shoemaker/BGN UPDATE 2: Been a bunch of rumors sent in within the past few hours dealing with Geoffrey Bodine, Shoemaker Racing, Dick Trickle, etc. Background: The rumor was that Dick Trickle was coming back to the #64 Shoemaker Racing Chevy in the BGN series as someone saw Trickle and team owner Dennis Shoemaker talking in the garage at Texas. Here is what I hear from the Shoemaker Racing Site: 1) Dennis and Dick did have a conversation on Saturday morning, but it was nothing more than a friendly conversation and chit chat that lasted about a minute and a half as Shoemaker was busy preparing for the race. 2) Dennis has had no direct or indirect contact with Schneider National regarding anything other than friendly "hello's" and "how are ya's". 3) Dennis is confident that Jimmy Spencer and Dick will work things out. In fact Dennis said, "Spencer and Trickle have had an unprecedented run of bad luck the past few events and he knows that Spencer can turn it around." Dennis is certain that the #5 team will be a force to reckoned with very soon. 4) Dennis is regretful that Geoffrey Bodine has decided to no longer run the Busch Series. The reason given being the potential for injuries. 5) Barry Bodine's dad, Geoffrey, has secured a fulltime opportunity with the #40 ChannelLock Chevy since Kerry Earnhardt was released. According to Geoffrey, he and the #40 car owner are friends. 6) The #64 Chevy WILL have a driver for Nashville(3-29-1999) -- UPDATE 1: from the Geoffrey Bodine Fanclub Site - Either Geoffrey or Barry is scheduled to pilot the #64 Dennis Shoemaker Racing Monte Carlo in Nashville, TN, this Saturday and Geoffrey is not now, or ever has been "afraid" of being injured in a racecar. Injuries are an accepted risk taken by professional racecar drivers(3-30-1999) -- UPDATE 2: The Shoemaker Racing Site site reports that Geoffrey Bodine will be back in the #64 Luxury Travel Motor Coaches Chevy at Nashville and Bristol(3-31-1999)

  • Benson Associate: Richfood, Inc., will announce Thursday that it is co-sponsoring Johnny Benson's #26 Cheerios Ford in the Exide 400 at Richmond International Raceway in September(Times-Dispatch)(3-30-1999)

  • Bud Moore News UPDATE 3: Jeff Green is entered in the #15-Bud Moore Ford, but I am hearing that team may have closed up shop(3-23-1999) -- UPDATE: The Bud Moore Engineering race team is still hard at work. Moore, the team's general manager, is encouraged by upcoming talks with potential sponsors and partners, but it's happened before. He knows not to get too optimistic before the final deal is signed. They are rebuilding their car from Daytona. As recently as a month ago, the team had planned to qualify for the events at Atlanta two weeks ago and this weekend's Texas race. But plans for both fell through at the last minute. On Wednesday, Moore withdrew his entry for Sunday's race at Texas Motor Speedway. The team is still fairly discouraged by the events at Daytona in February, when the #15 Ford was wrecked on the first lap of the 125-mile qualifying event. Driver Jeff Green had tested and practiced the car at good times, and the team was confident that he would make the field. Moore has been trying to convince potential sponsors and partners based upon limited past performances -- and questionable potential( -- UPDATE 2: Hearing a potential sponsor for the team may be AMVETS, American Veterans of World War II, Korea and Vietnam and they may attempt the Coca Cola 600 -- UPDATE 3: This was also reported on RPM2Nite, that sources tell RPM2Nite that the team is close to signing a sponsor to return to Cup and mentioned AMVETS(3-30-1999)

  • Craven Testing UPDATE: I hear Ricky Craven will test the #58 Hollywood Video Ford at Talladega on April 6/7 (rain date the 8th) -- UPDATE: Actually this is a Ford test date for Talladega and most of the Ford teams are expected to participate(3-30-1999)

  • Long/Childress? UPDATE: Jim Long, the crew chief for the Geoff Bodine-Joe Bessey #60 Power Team Chevy team, is under consideration for a job with Richard Childress Racing, according to sources close to the situation(PitNow)(3-29-1999) -- UPDATE: Jim Long is not leaving the #60 Team. He stated today that he is "very happy at Bessey Motorsports."(Geoffrey Bodine Fanclub Site/Forum)(3-30-1999)

  • Bristol Testing: Tony Stewart and Bobby Hamilton in Cup cars and Kenny Schrader and Sterling Marlin in their BGN cars tested at Bristol today, no speeds(3-30-1999)

  • Skinner Update: Mike Skinner stopped by the RCR #31 shop Monday and told the crew he would be ready to run 500 laps at Bristol in two weeks(almost). Team Mgr, David Smith told RPM2Nite that he would have a relief driver standing by in case Skinner needs one(RPM2Nite). Candidates would probably be Morgan Shepherd and Mike Dillon.(3-30-1999)

  • Marketing News: The Premiere Group -- a full-service motorsports marketing and licensing agency, based in Harrisburg, N.C. -- has hired veteran motorsports public relations specialist and writer John Bisci as its Communications Director. Bisci, a 42-year-old native of Buffalo, N.Y., is the former Public Relations Director for Las Vegas Motor Speedway, and has represented teams and drivers sponsored by Exide, Caterpillar and Raybestos. John is also a writer for Trackside Magazine and Speedway Scene. Among his functions with The Premiere Group will be to act as team coordinator and oversee publicity and media relations efforts for Premiere Motorsports' NASCAR Busch Grand National Series team and its driver, Freddie Query(3-30-1999)

  • New Team for 2000? UPDATE 4 Pro football Hall of Famers Jim Brown and Willie Lanier are part of a joint venture dubbed Celebrity Motorsports that is pursuing ownership of a Winston Cup team for the 2000 season(USA Today/Skip Wood)(2-6-1999) -- UPDATE 1: By this time next year, Willie Lanier and fellow Hall of Famer Jim Brown hope to be part of an ownership group of a competing team. Brown and Lanier have joined with Bill Futterer of Berea, Ohio, to form Celebrity Motorsports. The group hopes to become involved with an existing team and help with sponsorship and marketing. They have some teams in mind, but are not saying which ones. Lanier said he and his partners hope to have something lined up soon so they can be ready by Daytona 2000(Times-Dispatch)(2-11-1999) -- UPDATE 2: Jim Brown, a football legend, and Willie Lanier, another NFL star from the past, have been looking at a Winston Cup effort next season, and Felix Sabates appears to be their NASCAR link. Lanier is an executive with First Union, a company that has sponsored a Sabates team. And Sabates says he's looking at Mario Hernandez, 23, a young Cuban college graduate, as a possible NASCAR driver, probably starting with a Dash series car(PitNow/JournalNow)2-14-1999) -- UPDATE 3: Ex-NFL greats Jim Brown and Willie Lanier toured the press box during the race. The hall of famers are interested in owning a Winston Cup team(SpeedNet)(3-29-1999) -- UPDATE 4: I hear this may become the second Mattei Motorsports team in 2000(3-30-1999)

  • Primestar vs Texas 500 next Nashville UPDATE 2: no idea why the Mike, Ken, Buddy or Ned did not refer to the race as the Primestar 500 but the Texas 500. I don't think they refer to any of the sponsors on the cars either, maybe policy. Not looking to speculate, it's their decision(3-28-1999) -- UPDATE 1: The broadcast networks require that the title sponsor of the event purchase a few spots on the telecast for the network to use the entitlement. When Primestar pulled out of the CBS telecast, it became the Texas 500. Note that Saturday's race was called the Coca-Cola 300 on CBS.(3-29-1999) -- UPDATE 2: Saturday's BellSouth Mobility 320 will be called the "Nashville 320" when it is broadcast nationally by CBS. CBS explains it reason and policies at The Tennessean (3-30-1999)

  • Rusty Tests UPDATE: I hear Rusty Wallace tested at Greenville Pickens Speedway on Wednesday(3-25-1999) -- UPDATE: Mentioned during the CBS Broadcast that Rusty and the team did test and ran over 200 laps(3-29-1999)

  • LaJoie Crewmember: Kyle Green, a crewmember on the No. 14 Federated Auto Parts Ford driven by Randy LaJoie, was taken to the QualityCare Network Infield Care Center after being knocked down on pit road by a tire. He was treated and released. Green was back carrying tires over the wall during next pit stop(TMS Notes)(3-29-1999)

  • Special Visitor: Rusty Wallace had a special guest at TMS Sunday. Former pro baseball star Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams attended the Primestar 500. Williams appears with ex-baseball star Lee Smith in a current Miller Lite television commercial. Williams helped the Philadelphia Phillies to a pennant in 1993, but perhaps is best known for his wild pitching style(Jayski Note: his motto was that he pitched like his hair was on fire)(TMS Notes)(3-29-1999)

  • Money Raised: Speedway Children’s Charities collected over $61,000 a the Winn Dixie Speedway Children’s Charities live memorabilia auction held Saturday afternoon at the speedway. They raised over $50,000 Wednesday at the Fort-Worth Star Telegram Speedway Children’s Charities Celebrity Golf Tournament at Tour 18 in Flower Mound, Texas(TMS Notes)(3-29-1999)

  • Rumored Paint Scheme Stuff: From Sue's ADNASCAR Newsletter - Dale Earnhardt was supposed to run a "Taz" paint scheme for the Winston Select but the scheme has been canceled due to the postponement of the introduction of the 2000 Chevrolet Monte Carlo. A new paint scheme will be announced on 4/11/99. Gordon's Winston Car: Jeff Gordon is scheduled to run the Stars Wars paint scheme on the BGN Chevy at Charlotte and possibly run a Superman scheme on the #24 Chevy, with some sort of Chromalusion paint splash for the Winston. Look for an official announcement 4/20/99 that Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. will run "Connected Theme" Cars, not sure where or if this is for the BGN Charlotte race. Another possible paint schemes for the #5 Terry Labonte chevy, Universal Studios/Islands of adventure, featuring marvel supper hero land (spiderman), The lost continent(3-29-1999)

  • Goodyear Statement on the Tires: Goodyear statement (from Phil Holmer, Goodyear Marketing Manager, Stock Car Racing): TMS basically a brand new track compared to last year. Teams didn’t have the critical Saturday afternoon hour practice due to rain. With rain all night, the track was green (rubber washed off) for Sunday’s race. Teams were going on the best information they had for race setups. After Goodyear engineers reverified the minimum tire pressure recommendations with team during the race, the last half of the race went in a normal fashion. Tires are being returned to Goodyears Akron Technical Center for further analysis. (For your information: Air pressure is an integral part of tire design and if a tire is used outside of the specified range, it is subject to abnormal stress.)(TMS Notes)(3-29-1999)

  • Hard Licks Update: Some tough licks for Jeff Gordon, Mike Skinner and Jimmy Spencer. Both Gordon's and Skinner's accidents looked like right rear tires went down. During an interview at lap 128, Gordon said they took X-Rays and he didn't think anything was broken but he was mighty sore. UPDATE on Gordon: X-rays showed that Gordon didn't break or chip anything and he expects to be back in the #24 Chevy at Bristol(Infobeat/AP). Mike Skinner was taken off the track on a stretcher and seemed shook up. Skinners owner, Richard Childress interviewed and said that Skinner probably has a right broken should blade. UPDATE on Skinner: Skinner sustained a hairline break in the right shoulder blade(shame one he injured at Texas in 1998). Jimmy Spencer tangled with Robert Pressley a few laps from the finish and seemed groggy. UPDATE on Spencer: Jimmy Spencer, driver of the #23, was treated and released from the QualityCare Network Infield Care Center(TMS Notes). Bobby Labonte gutted it out, came home with a 3rd place finish and luckily never took a hard hit like Gordon, Skinner or Spencer. Bobby Hamilton was overcome by fumes and the flu and was relieved by Kenny Wallace, who fell out early. Randy LaJoie, who blew an engine in the #14 was to get in, but could not fit in the seat properly.(3-28/29-1999)

  • The return of Jr Johnson UPDATE 2: NASCAR Legend, Junior Johnson will soon return to NASCAR racing as part of a BGN team. Johnson will be at a press conference at the former Smokin' Joes Cup race shop in Hamptonville, NC, on Monday at 11am/et to formally announce the formation of the team. Johnson will talk about his involvement with the team, announce the team's sponsor, Overton's Inc. and introduce the team's driver, one that has extensive NASCAR experience. Another press conference will be held on Tuesday at 11am/et in Greenville, N.C., at the home office of Overton's(NOL) -- some hints are given in this story by Larry Woody at - Laid-back Johnson just an advisor now(Tennessean), mentions Johnson as more of an advisor and Overton's as well as a driver Chris Cook, who hopes to make his BGN debut in the April 3 BellSouth Mobility 320 in Nashville. In the story it also mentions that Cooks team rents a shop Johnson owns in Hamptonville(3-27-1999) -- UPDATE 1: Junior Johnson's race shop on U.S. 421 in Yadkin County is back open for business, with Kevin Sassar setting up a Busch operation for Chris Cook, a Late Model driver from Nashville. Johnson, who retired as a NASCAR team owner three years ago, will offer some advice to the team(PitNow) -- UPDATE 2: see a Press Release on my BGN/CTS Silly Season Page(3-29-1999)

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