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PAST NEWS SEPTEMBER 27-OCTOBER 3, 1999


(10-3-1999)
  • Short Track Season: The short track 'title' goes to Rusty Wallace by four points over Dale Earnhardt. The top ten: 1) #2-Wallace 891; 2) #3-Earnhardt 887; 3) #6-Martin 838; 4) #88-Jarrett 835; 5) #40-Marlin; 6) #24-Gordon 788; 7) #44-Petty 772; 8) #99-Burton 766; 9) #20-Stewart 734; 10) #31-Skinner 727 (Stock Car Fans Rumblings)(10-3-1999)

  • Top Fives: Geoffrey Bodine had his first top five of 1999 at Martinsville and first since Rockingham on Feb 22, 1998 or 57 races ago. Bodine is the 28th different driver in 1999 to record a top five(10-3-1999)

  • Martinsville Stuff: Jeff Gordon gets his first win without Ray Evernham at Martinsville will his new crew chief Brian Whitesell, Gordon has been the highest finishing Chevy in 15th of 27 races in 1999. Earnhardt almost became the 2nd ever provisional starter to win a race. Jeff Burton accomplished it earlier this year at Loudon(10-3-1999)

  • Rookies: Elliott Sadler was the Rookie of the race for the first time this year. Tony Stewart had been every race except one, when Buckshot Jones was the highest finishing ROTY candidate at Las Vegas. See my ROTY rules and standings page(10-3-1999)

  • Kenny Leads: When #55-Kenny Wallace lead laps at Martinsville, he became the 42nd driver who led at least one lap in 1999. Wallace was the last driver who has made ALL the Cup races in 1999 to lead a lap. To see who leads in the bonus points, check out my Bonus Points Page(10-3-1999)

  • Musgrave UPDATE: Ted Musgrave indicated he is not interested in returning to the Butch Mock team, bought out from under him this summer by businessman Darwin Oordt. Oordt left the door open for Musgrave a week ago, saying he likely would have two Winston Cup teams next year and that Ted remained in the running. Ted, however, is looking elsewhere. See the rest of the story by Ben Blake at Racer Magazine -- UPDATE: Musgrave said on TNN's Inside NASCAR that he would not stay with the Oordt organization to run a 2nd car, he basically gave a flat out "No" when asked(10-3-1999)

  • Gibbs Assoc: Joe Gibbs Racing announced that it would bring International Home Foods on board as an official sponsor for the cars of Bobby Labonte(#18) and Tony Stewart(#20) for the 2000 NASCAR Winston Cup season. IHF, manufacturer of such products as Chef Boyardee, Crunch n' Munch and Gulden's mustard, will feature its logo on the cars, as well as provide at-track hospitality on race weekends(Racer Magazine)(10-3-1999)


    (10-2-1999)
  • Gordon's Hendrick Future: #24 Driver Jeff Gordon, three-time Winston Cup champion with Hendrick Motorsports, will assume some share of ownership in the NASCAR racing teams, acting team manager John Hendrick confirmed Friday. The team has scheduled a press conference for Wednesday at Lowe’s Motor Speedway(Racer Magazine)(10-2-1999)

  • #58 News: Car owner Scott Barbour will announce a sponsor for 2000 next week and will retain Hut Stricklin as driver of his #58 Ford. The sponsor could be Federated Auto Parts, whose colors have been on the car in selected recent races(SpeedNet/Monte Dutton)(10-2-1999)

  • Good News: #5,24 and 35 Cup team owner, Rick Hendrick is 100% in remission from his leukemia and 60 days from ending his medication, his brother, John, said yesterday. In fact, it was Rick Hendrick who handled the contract talks with (former)crew chief Ray Evernham last week. The owner of Hendrick Motorsports has been undergoing treatment after being diagnosed with leukemia in late 1996. Company President John Hendrick said the talks took their toll on Rick which resulted in Rick Hendrick releasing Evernham from his seven-year contract to work as Jeff Gordon's crew chief. Hendrick said the team had negotiated a deal with Evernham to move into management and had planned a press conference for next week at Charlotte. John Hendrick said that Evernham notified them last week that he had changed his mind. His release took effect Wednesday, and Brian Whitesell has taken over as Gordon's crew chief(Times-Dispatch)(10-2-1999)

  • Nemechek/Petree UPDATE 2: hearing Joe Nemechek has signed to drive the #33 Andy Petree Chevy in 2000(9-30-1999) -- UPDATE: Andy Petree has a new driver for next season, and Joe Nemechek has a new job. The two signed yesterday to team for the next two seasons, with a third-year option. Petree said that he expected Nemechek to run his own Busch cars next season, and Petree said he was putting together a package for Kenny Wallace, now Nemechek's new teammate in the Petree camp, to run a number of Busch races(PitNow)(10-1-1999) -- UPDATE: Petree will also return to being a crew chief on the #33 in 2000(RPM2Nite)(10-2-1999)

  • AJ: Motorsports legend A.J. Foyt, who will field the No. 14 Pontiacs next season, is still in the process of selecting his driver, though IRL driver Scott Sharp and Winston Cup driver Ted Musgrave are considered the leading candidates(That's Racin')(10-2-1999)

  • #30 at Charlotte UPDATE: this weeks Winston Cup Scene magazine reports that Todd Bodine will drive the #30 Pontiac at Charlotte(10-1-1999) -- UPDATE: Mike Bliss, who will leave the Roush Racing truck team after this season, will drive for #30 owner Jack Birmingham at Phoenix and Homestead and possibly Rockingham this season. A driver can run no more than five races in a season to be considered a rookie in the next season(The Depot)(10-2-1999)

  • Sponsor or no races: Joe Falk, owner of the #91 LJ Racing Chevy, said he will not run even a limited Cup or BGN schedule in 2000 without a sponsor. Falk, who plans to run four more Cup races this season, wouldn't mind moving to the BGN Series, though. He says he'd like to develop a program with Tim Fedewa, who will be driving the Falk Cup car this weekend at Martinsville(Times-Dispatch)(10-2-1999)

  • Lucky Fan...Maybe: As Jeff Burton heads to Napa AutoCare 500 at Martinsville Speedway this coming week, he will be racing for more than just money and Winston Cup championship points. He'll be racing for a home. That's right if Jeff wins the race on October 3rd, one lucky fan will walk away the proud owner of a new Nanticoke town home package worth $250,000. When the lucky winner opens the garage door to their new Nanticoke Home, they will find a brand new Ford Taurus LX courtesy of Ford Motor Company. Not only that, but when they open the kitchen cabinets boxes of Hamburger Helper, Specialty Potatoes, Supermoist Cake and Bisquick stand ready to feed the hungry homeowners thanks to Betty Crocker, a proud associate sponsor of Burton's teammate Johnny Benson, who drives the Cheerios Ford. In order for Nanticoke to give the home away Burton had to win two of the three races: The Jiffy Lube 300 at New Hampshire International Speedway on July 11th; The Napa AutoCare 500 at Martinsville Speedway on October 3rd; The Napa 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on November 21st. Mission accomplished on July 11th as he won the gas mileage war at New Hampshire. So all Burton needs to do is win the Napa AutoCare 500 on October 3rd at Martinsville Speedway(or Atlanta) and Nanticoke Homes will award the townhome package to one lucky fan(PR)(10-2-1999)


    (10-1-1999)
  • Notes from watching qualifying: #10-Ricky Rudd's Ford looked very tie-dyed; #05-Morgan Shepherd's Pontiac was totally white no sponsor on it; the #26 Cheerios Ford is gold; #33-Ken Schrader has the blue Skoal scheme; the #91-LJ Racing/Larry's Homes car is red and yellow. Practice Accidents: #18-Bobby Labonte, #16 Kevin Lepage and #1-Steve Park wrecked their primary cars in practice and had to go to backup cars for qualifying(ESPN2 Qualifying)(10-1-1999)

  • Cowboys and NASCAR: The NFL Dallas Cowboys are negotiating to have two cars bearing their colors and logo race in next April's Direct TV 500 at the Texas Motor Speedway, owner Jerry Jones said Thursday. The two Winston Cup cars - one predominantly silver and the other predominantly blue - would compete in the April 2 race. The Cowboys also want a car with their colors to compete in the Texas 300, a Busch Series race, on April 1. Jones would not divulge the names of the drivers the Cowboys have targeted, but spokesmen for Bobby Labonte and Rusty Wallace's primary sponsor say they have had preliminary discussions with the Cowboys. For example, the Cowboys wouldn't use Earnhardt because he has an endorsement deal with Coke. Jones has ties with Pepsi(Dallas Morning News) NOTE: that should rule out Labonte also as he has an endorsement deal with Coke also(10-1-1999)

  • RPM2Nite Evernham Interview UPDATE-LISTEN: Most of the show was dedicated to Ray Evernham and John Kernan interviewed Evernham, some of the things covered: Rick and John Hendrick offered Evernham a larger role and a management position in Hendrick Motorsports, there was no friction between the Hendricks or the crew about Evernham's decision, Evernham will still be partners with Jeff Gordon with their #24 Pepsi BGN team, and when asked about the Chrysler rumors: Evernham said he had to "Dodge that question", anyhow it was a good interview(9-30-1999) -- UPDATE: you can listen to the interview at the ESPN NASCAR Page(10-1-1999)

  • Banquets: The NASCAR Winston Cup Series banquet will be held on Friday, Dec. 3, at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City. The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series banquet will be at The Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco on Friday, Dec. 10 and the NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division banquet will be held on Friday, Jan. 7, at The Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif.(NOL) The Cup banquet is private and closed to the public(10-1-1999)

  • Melling sponsor UPDATE: my understanding is that Turner Broadcasting/Cartoon Network, rumored to be going to the #75 team until the Pizza Hut rumor broke out, has not told the #9 Melling team it is leaving at the end of the season and may be back with them in 2000. -- UPDATE: Melling Racing was informed today by The Cartoon Network that it will not return as the team's sponsor for the 2000 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season(Melling PR)(10-1-1999)

  • TV Stuff: The NASCAR television package may be closer to being signed, but it's not clear which way NASCAR officials might be leaning. According to one report, both ABC and Fox are each willing to take the entire 10-month Winston Cup season as a package(PitNow)(10-1-1999)


    (9-30-1999)
  • Craven signs for 2000: Midwest Transit Racing co-owners Mike Witters and Hal Hicks together with Winston Cup driver – Ricky Craven, announced the signing of Craven to drive the #50 Midwest Transit Racing Chevy for the 2000 Winston Cup season(Midwest Transit Racing Site)(9-30-1999)

  • Finally...Wells, an announcement: A spokesperson for Cal Wells' Precision Performance Inc. said Wednesday the team will announce its Winston Cup plans for the 2000 season next week at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte. The name most often being mentioned lately as the likely driver is Scott Pruett(from CART).(That's Racin')(9-30-1999)

  • Gilliland News: NASCAR Winston West Series driver Butch Gilliland is looking for a 2000 ride. Gilliland, who formerly co-owned the #1 Winston West car he currently drives for Jenn West Motorsports, a California Corporation of multiple owners, confirmed Wednesday afternoon that he was ride hunting for 2000. Gilliland has been talking with several Winston Cup and Craftsman Truck team owners but no plans are set, but he will not drive for Jenn West Motorsports in 2000. The car Gilliland is stepping out of will be driven by Gilliland's son David, as he makes a run for Rookie-of-the-year in the Winston West series(Racing West) Gilliland has attempted and ran a few 1999 Cup races in the #38 Ford(9-30-1999)

  • Shepherd News: Morgan Shepherd will have Delco-Remy as the sponsor and former Cup team owner, Richard Jackson will be helping Shepherd out(Morgan Shepherd Site)(9-29-1999) -- CORRECTION: I am now told that Shepherd will have Delco Remy sponsorship at Charlotte next week, and possibly at Martinsville, not sure yet(9-30-1999)

  • Kulwicki Schloarship: If recent University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNC Charlotte) graduate Ryan Zeck has his way, the legacy of the late Alan Kulwicki will continue well into the next century. Officials from Lowe’s Motor Speedway and UNC Charlotte announced Zeck would make his superspeedway debut in a car painted in UNC Charlotte colors carrying number 49 in honor of the UNC Charlotte 49ers. The car and plans were unveiled on the UNC Charlotte campus. Zeck’s quest to emulate Kulwicki’s on-track success begins next Wednesday, Oct. 6, during Winston Pole Night activities at Lowe’s Motor Speedway as he plans to compete in the EasyCare Vehicle Service Contracts 100, featuring the ARCA Bondo/Mar-Hyde stock car series. A 23-year-old California native, Zeck was the first recipient of the Alan Kulwicki Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship was established in 1994 after the tragic death of Kulwicki in a 1993 airplane crash. Kulwicki was the first NASCAR Winston Cup driver with an engineering degree and won the 1992 NASCAR Winston Cup Championship operating his own team(Lowes Motor Speedwat Site)(9-30-1999)


    (9-29-1999)
  • The Official Release from Hendrick: Hendrick Motorsports Honors Evernham Request, Promotes Whitesell with information about Ray Evernham's release and about new crew chief Brian Whitesell(9-30-1999)

  • It's Official - Evernham Released: Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick announced Wednesday he has granted Jeff Gordon's crew chief, Ray Evernham, a provisional release from his contract effective immediately. Hendrick said he decided to "assist Ray with a lifelong dream which he shared with me of pursuing his own team." Brian Whitesell takes over as the crew chief of the #24 DuPont Chevy and driver Jeff Gordon. See full stories at That's Racin' and NASCAR Online(9-29-1999)

  • Press Conference: A special press conference with NASCAR’s Ricky Rudd and Tide Racing will announce the launch of a charitable fundraising program for Give Kids The World, an organization that aids children with life-threatening illnesses and their families. The #10 Tide Ford Taurus will race bearing a paint scheme designed by Tiffany Rich, a 10-year-old girl with cystic fibrosis. Beginning with trackside sales at the NAPA Autocare 500, collectible die-cast replicas of the car donated by Action Performance Companies, Inc. and Hasbro, Inc. will generate funds for the charity. 100% of the proceeds will be donated to Give Kids the World. Immediately following the press conference, there will be a ribbon cutting in front of the car. Takes place at Martinsville on Saturday at 10:40am(Martinsville Speedway Site)(9-29-1999)

  • #30/Bliss/Cup: NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver Mike Bliss will attempt to qualify the Jimmy Dean Pontiac for Sunday's NAPA Autocare 500 at Martinsville. Bliss reunites with Barry Dodson, who served as his crew chief from 1996-98. Dodson now heads the NASCAR Winston Cup operation at Eel River Racing. Bliss has two Winston Cup starts in his career, both coming last season. He drove for Buzz McCall at Martinsville last fall, qualifying and finishing 25th. He also made the field at Phoenix last year(Hoagland Communications PR) Bliss was released from his CTS obligations for 2000 earlier today, see story below..(9-29-1999)

  • Martinsville Appearance: Earl Ross may have only driven the NASCAR Winston Cup Series one season, but he made the best of it and is now returning to the site of his only win. Ross, 58, will attend the NAPA AutoCare 500 on Sunday which is the 25th anniversary of his 1974 win in the Old Dominion 500 at Martinsville Speedway. Ross was the 1974 NASCAR Rookie of the Year and finished eighth in the final Winston Cup standings that year(Martinsville Speedway Newsletter)(9-30-1999)

  • Bliss/Roush Part: Roush Racing announced Wednesday that Mike Bliss will complete the current season in the CTS driving the #99 Exide Batteries Ford and will then pursue other opportunities. Roush and Bliss have mutually agreed to separate(NOL). Hmm...wonder where he'll go?? maybe the #30/27 Eel River Pontiac??(9-29-1999)

  • #91 News: BGN driver Tim Fedawa(#36 Stanley Tool Pontiac) will drive the #91 Larry Homes Chevy at Martinsville and recently tested at Greenville-Pickens(SC) Speedway(9-29-1999)

  • #75 Sponsor? UPDATE 4: hearing that Turner Broadcasting/Cartoon Network etc will be the new sponsor for the #75 Galaxy Motorsports team and new driver Wally Dallenbach(9-25-1999) -- UPDATE: another source tell's the sponsor will be Disney and Pizza Hut(Pizza Hut was rumored months ago), but most reports I hear say Turner Broadcasting/Cartoon Network and the #75 owner himself said it was an existing primary sponsor, which Disney/Pizza Hut is not, but sure would be nice if it was for the possible 2nd team and Ted Musgrave(9-27-1999) -- UPDATE 2: Sources tell me it'll be Turner Broadcasting/Cartoon Network, not Pizza Hut or Disney -- UPDATE 3: hmmm, maybe I was too hasty with that last update......Pencil in Pizza Hut as the key sponsor in the deal that will have Wally Dallenbach driving the #75 Fords owned by Darwin Oordt beginning next season. Pizza Hut will not be the car's only primary sponsor next year, but will be one of two or three major backers for 2000 and is expected to assume the primary sponsor's role in 2001(That's Racin')(9-29-1999)

  • More on Evernham/Chrysler: from TNN: The latest rumors swirling around the Winston Cup grapevine center around Evernham's office effects and tools have left the Hendrick complex, and his chief wrench Ed Guzzo will also soon be departing the #24. Brian Whitsell will reportedly fully assume the crewchief duties on the #24, and it's highly unlikely that Evernham will be at Martinsville this weekend. He's supposedly working to own and lead a Dodge Intrepid team into the Winston Cup ranks in 2001. Supposedly, an announcement on their future Cup racing effort will be forthcoming by Dodge no later than Oct. 31. See full story at TNN: Rumors, Strong Rumors, Reality: Part 2 Some expect Chrysler to announce its Cup plans at the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Accociation) show in October at Las Vegas(SpeedVision)(9-29-1999)

  • Evernham/Chrysler/Wells: On Monday, team owner Cal Wells said Evernham turned down his job offer because he was already committed to a Chrysler deal. And a Chrysler motorsports executive told AutoWeek magazine he couldn't confirm Evernham's arrival until a press conference next week. It's no secret Chrysler wants to renew its Winston Cup presence, and what bigger name to head the fledgling effort than Evernham's? Among the celebrities being mentioned as business partners: New York Jets coach Bill Parcells. It's expected that Richard Petty will at least consider switching his Cup teams from Pontiac to Dodge. And even Bill Elliott has been linked to Chrysler in 2001, the year his McDonald's backing disappears(Daily Press) Wow, the Elliott deal is different, other teams I have heard include Penske and Morgan-McClure(9-29-1999)

  • But.....: Check out the transcript of the 10 o'clock news at KVOA-TV(channel 4, NBC) in Tucson, AZ, that mentions Evernham will go to Wells....WITH Chrysler: KVOA 10pm Transcript. NOTE: this make no sense as Wells will be getting supplied FORD engines from YATES, unless it's only a one year deal???(9-29-1999)

  • NY License Plates: A new line of custom license plates featuring eight NASCAR drivers from the Winston Cup Series will be made to New York drivers beginning mid-November, according to the state Division of Motor Vehicles. #99 Driver Jeff Burton, joined DMV Commissioner Richard Jackson, Jr. and Lt. Gov. Mary Donohue in launching the new NASCAR plates on Tuesday. Burton will be featured on the first license plate with Mark Martin, Tony Stewart and Bobby Hamilton as some of the other eight NASCAR driver available. The NASCAR logo will appear on all the plates. New York is the first state to feature NASCAR drivers on its custom plates. Jackson said the DMV plans to add more NASCAR drivers to the line(Syracuse Online/AP)

  • Wells Driver? Scott Pruett may actually get Cal Wells ride in NASCAR Winston Cup, with Pruett's CART seat going to an Indy Lights driver, perhaps Didier Andre or Felipe Giaffone(SpeedNet), hear this was reported on ESPN2's CART2Day pre-race show on Sunday(9-29-1999)

  • Galaxy Motorsports: #75 General Manager Jimmy Johnson and Owner Darwin Oordt have just signed Wally Dallenbach to a three-year contract, and they've signed a lease-engine program with Robert Yates for motors to be built on-site at the Mooresville shop, next door to Michael Kranefuss' shop, just across the road from the Ricky Rudd-Robert Yates operation, and just down the street from where Rusty Wallace and Roger Penske hold forth. Ryan Pemberton is one of men they're considering for crew chief. Oordt and Johnson say they're not going to be content with just a one-car team but are planning a two-car program(Cup), to go with their already-in-place Busch team, and then add a second Busch team, see the full and long but interesting story at PitNow(9-29-1999)

  • Bruton/NHRA: Bruton Smith, chairman of Speedway Motorsports, has made an offer to buy the National Hot Rod Association(NHRA), but the organization’s president has told him that the NHRA is not for sale(Racer Magazine Site)(9-29-1999)

  • Martin at Charlotte: Mark Martin will drive a special car when the series returns to Charlotte. Martin will have the car Jeff Burton(#99) drove to victory at Lowe's Motor Speedway in May. The change will be made because Martin is second in points to Dale Jarrett and Burton is fifth(The Depot)(9-29-1999)


    (9-28-1999)
  • T Bodine: Todd Bodine today extended his long relationship with Cicci-Welliver Racing, and will continue as driver of the Phillips 66 Chevrolet for the 2000 BGN season(Cicci-Welliver Racing Site), so count Bodine out of the running for the #30 Eel River Racing Pontiac ride(9-28-1999)

  • Waltrip to be honored: NASCAR Winston Cup Series three-time Champion Darrell Waltrip will be one of 12 athletes honored in the fourteenth annual Great Sports Legends Dinner to benefit the Buoniconti Fund in support of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis the evening of Tuesday, October 5, 1999. Former NFL great Frank Gifford will be the Master of Ceremonies for the event, which will be held in the Grand Ballroom at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. Waltrip, driver of the Haas/Carter Motorsports Route 66/Big Kmart Ford, will be the only auto racing figure included in this years star-studded line-up. Sports legends Jack Nicklaus, Martina Navratilova, jockey Julie Krone, Jerry Lucas, Jim Palmer, John Thompson, Olga Korbut, Marcus Allen, Pat LaFontaine, Olympic star Dan O'Brien and Gifford will also be honored. Former honorees include Hank Aaron, Muhammad Ali, Julias Erving, Mario Andretti, Wayne Gretsky and Johnny Unitas, to name a few. Individuals and corporations pay up to $25,000 for the opportunity to attend the event, which will include a silent auction of autographed sports memorabilia(Kmart PR)(9-28-1999)

  • Evernham Update: Hendrick Motorsports representatives failed to return calls yesterday to answer questions about whether Ray Evernham will appear with driver Jeff Gordon at Martinsville Speedway this weekend. Meanwhile, sources confirmed that Evernham will spend the 2000 season building cars for the 2001 Chrysler Dodge Intrepid team that the crew chief will own. The cars should be ready for NASCAR approval in time to debut for that season. Reportedly, Evernham will be present, but Brian Whitesell will make race-day calls. Of course, that was supposed to be the arrangement last weekend as well and although Evernham did little with the team throughout most of the weekend, Sunday belonged to the crew chief. As Winston Cup teams work to understand how the magic pairing of the driver and crew chief could possibly be ending, another partnership involving the pair seems to be coming to a close. Sources say that Gordon is taking possession of Gordon-Evernham Motorsports, the Busch program the pair started for this season(Times-Dispatch)(9-28-1999)

  • No Cup for Little Al: IRL team owner Rick Galles says two-time Indy winner Al Unser Jr. and he have agreed to run next season together in the Indy Racing League. However, they have not signed a contract, Galles said(SpeedNet)(9-28-1999)

  • Junie takes a break: #90 Ford team owner Junie Donlavey had a great weekend at Dover Downs(made the race and finished 31st), but that wasn’t enough to encourage him to make the trek to Martinsville. The team is skipping the race and then heading to Lowe’s Motor Speedway(next week). The team has not named a driver yet(Times-Dispatch)(9-28-1999)


    (9-27-1999)
  • New Cup Team: IRL Team owner Tom Kelley said plans are under way to expand Kelley Racing with a one-car team in NASCAR's Winston Cup Series, starting with the 2001 season. Kelley said no official announcement is expected until next spring, when sponsors will be identified. Jim Freudenberg, general manager of Kelley Racing, said the team is looking for a race shop in the Charlotte, NC, area. Team representatives contacted veteran NASCAR owner-driver Ricky Rudd about buying the assets of that team before it was sold to Robert Yates Racing as part of his agreement to drive there next season. Both Kelley and Freudenberg stressed that the new Winston Cup team will not dilute Kelley Racing's commitment to its IRL program. While Kelley and his father, Jim, basically financed the IRL team out of their own pockets for the first two years, Tom Kelley said that won't be the case should they decide to run in NASCAR. Kelley Racing is the third open-wheel team this year to announce intentions to branch out by adding a stock car division. Fellow IRL owner A.J. Foyt and Cal Wells, an owner in the rival CART series, have both made headlines with deals in the past two months. Unlike Wells, who drew the ire of the NASCAR community by supposedly "stealing" sponsors away from veterans like Rudd and Bill Elliott, the Kelley team would be backed by sponsors who would be new to the Winston Cup series, Freudenberg said. The Winston Cup team would become the third branch of Kelley Racing, joining the IRL team and a new American Speed Association team that was announced over the weekend. Mark E. Dismore, whose father, Mark, was the first employee of Kelley Racing, will drive a Chevrolet in the series for the 2000 season. The monster.com-sponsored car will be based in Fort Wayne. Ron Heck, the former crew chief for the elder Dismore's IRL car, will help oversee the new ASA program. Mechanics at all of the Kelley auto dealerships will be invited to work on the car as an introduction to stock car racing(in part from the Fort Wayne News Sentinel)(9-27-1999)

  • #11 Sold?? UPDATE 3 Yes? SPONSOR? Hearing that Brett Bodine is looking to sell his #11 Winston Cup team. Sponsor Paychex leaves at the end of the 1999 season. One rumor has Richard Hilton, who owns Butch Gilliland Winston West team buying it(9-10-1999) -- UPDATE: Brett Bodine will be selling his Cup team. On 9/18, Bodine said that he was working out a sales agreeement with a party that will bring sponsorshop to the team and hopes to hevae the deal done within a week(Winston Cup Scene). I continue to hear it's the #1 Winston West owner Richard Hilton who is buying the team. No word on if Bodine would be retained as the driver(9-24-1999) -- UPDATE 2: RPM2Nite reported that there is a good chance Bodine would remain the driver AND from the Racer Magazine Site: Brett Bodine is a week away, he says, from selling the #11 team. Bodine, like Ricky Rudd an owner-driver, will lose sponsor Paychex after this season and notes that his team has been underfunded, even with sponsorship. The buyer apparently is West Coast racer Richard Hilton, and Bodine left the impression Hilton would bring sponsorship. He said a stipulation of the sale is that he remain as driver(9-25-1999) -- UPDATE 3/Sponsor? Hearing that Kroger, Ralphs/Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Quality Food Centers supermarkets will be the sponsor in some manner. Bodine mentioned there may be a 2nd car for the team, that may actually run at a race this year, could be Butch Gilliland from what I hear. Gilliland has attempted and run a few Cup races in the #38 Ford for Hilton(9-27-1999)

  • Nemechek news UPDATE: Joe Nemechek, who scored his first Winston Cup victory last weekend in New Hampshire, is the leading candidate to take over the driving duties of the #33 Chevrolets next season, The Charlotte Observer has learned. Nemechek spoke with car owner Andy Petree this weekend in Dover about the ride, but no final agreement has been reached, sources said(That's Racin')(9-26-1999) -- UPDATE: Winston Cup Today Radio reports that Joe Nemechek is the likely driver for the #33 Oakwood Homes Andy Petree Chevy. Andy Petree said it looks that way if they can come to an agreement(9-27-1999)

  • Jarrett Hurting UPDATE: Dale Jarrett was walking with obvious discomfort Saturday morning with an aching back he's blaming on a charity golf tournament he played in on Thursday(That's Racin')(9-26-1999) -- UPDATE: Jarrett saw a chiropractor on Monday and is feeling much better(RPM2Nite)(9-27-1999)

  • Elliott: what happened to Bill Elliott and the #94 McDonald's Ford? had this question a few times and had no clue, didn't mention it on the tube, anyhow: A piece of debris came up and punctured Bill Elliott's radiator, so they had to replace the radiator(9-27-1999)

  • About DW's attempt at Dover: got many questions on this: Despite valiant efforts, Darrell Waltrip and the Route 66/Big Kmart Racing team were unable to make the field for the MBNA Gold 400 last weekend at Dover. Waltrip and the team pulled out all the stops, including asking BGN driver Elton Sawyer to run several laps in the #66 Ford Taurus in an effort to gain more information about the set-up of the car. Unfortunately, the team came up short and packed up a day early. Car Owner Travis Carter: "I believe in Darrell, and I believe in our people and our cars," Carter said last weekend. "I also believe there is a solution to every problem. I may not have that answer right now, but we're going to do whatever it takes to build this team."(VanDercook & Company PR in part)(9-27-1999)

  • Shepherd Returns: I hear Morgan Shepherd will run his own #05 Pontiac at Martinsville, he is looking for sponsors and the Official Morgan Shepherd site is back online(9-27-1999)

  • Evernham at Dover: Ray Evernham ran the show from Jeff Gordon's pit on Sunday at Dover Downs International Speedway, but afterward nobody would say whether he'd be doing that again next week at Martinsville. See full story at That's Racin(9-27-1999)

  • Good Day for Roush: Four Jack Roush-owned cars finished in the top 10 at Dover (Martin - first, Matt Kenseth - fourth, Jeff Burton - sixth, Chad Little - seventh) and all six of Roush's cars finished in the top 20. Kevin Lepage came home in 13th and Johnny Benson finished 18th(Mark Martin's J-Mar Express Newsletter)(9-27-1999)

  • Overlooked: Elliott Sadler, mostly overlooked in his rookie season this year because of the phenomenal season Tony Stewart is having, has averaged 92.51 points per race. Compared to the past five rookies of the year, only Johnny Benson and Ricky Craven averaged a higher point accumulation during their rookie season(CITGO PR)(9-27-1999)

  • Mast stays running: #98 Rick Mast, despite mechanical problems, was running at the end and finished 34th. He is the only driver to have been running at the end of every race this season(The Depot)(9-27-1999)

  • Evernham and Parcells? Evernham reportedly is starting a Chrysler team in 2001. He is said to be partnering with Bill Parcells in an ownership agreement as the Dodge Intrepid debuts in Winston Cup racing. Still, Evernham has not confirmed anything, and Hendrick Motorsports President John Hendrick has stated only that the crew chief has a contract through 2006 and that he will be with Gordon's team through this season(Times-Dispatch)(9-27-1999)

  • Fine: Tommy Baldwin Jr., the crew chief for Ward Burton's #22 Pontiac's, will be fined $250 by NASCAR for being late to Sunday morning's pre-race mandatory driver and crew chief meeting(That's Racin')(9-27-1999)

  • Penalty: Kyle Petty and Dave Marcis were each penalized a lap for pitting outside the box. It's the same penalty given Jarrett at New Hampshire last weekend(The Depot)(9-27-1999)

  • Wells Crew Chief: Cal Wells has talked to several prospective drivers and crew chiefs in the Winston Cup garage. As he prepares to start his team in 2000, Wells has offered top dollar for a stellar pair. The latest addition to his wish list is Hendrick Motorsports' Andy Graves, crew chief for Terry Labonte(Times-Dispatch)(9-27-1999)

  • Hispanic Team: Auto-racing entrepreneur Rudy Rodriguez is building the first Hispanic-owned, Hispanic-sponsored, Hispanic-driven team in NASCAR history (the WHOLE package here, owner-sponsor-driver, not just owner). Rodriguez originally targeted the 2001 Nascar season for a first run. Instead, HRT Motorsports Inc. will debut at a BGN race at Homestead in a Chevy. HRT, which stands for "Hispanic Race Team," has allied itself with a veteran Nascar owner, Larry Hedrick, to put its team on the track. Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines has signed on as a secondary sponsor, as has coffee maker Cafe Bustelo. Negotiations continue for a primary sponsor, one that will underwrite most of the team's major expenses. The driver will be Colombian driver Jaime Guerro(Dallas Business Journal)(9-27-1999)(originally reported on this on 8-6-1999, see New Teams page)

  • Irwin Hot: #28-Kenny Irwin, who was 10th, scored his third consecutive top-10 run(The Depot)(9-27-1999)


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