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PAST NEWS DECEMBER 13-19, 1999


(12-19-1999)
  • No Dodge for Penske: Roger Penske last week signed a new three-year commitment with Ford. So Rusty Wallace won't be one of the drivers in a new Dodge Intrepid in 2001(Savannah Morning News)(12-19-1999)

  • DW in the booth? Darrell Waltrip is currently negotiating with both FOX Sports and NBC Sports to become a network commentator during races in 2001(Savannah Morning News)(12-19-1999)


    (12-18-1999)
  • Fuller info: the #27 ride and the 2000 Daytona 500 will not be Fuller's Winston Cup debut. He drove the #88 Pontiac(not with Yates but a family owned ride) in the March 1992 Richmond race to a 29th place finish(TNN Motorsports Prior Season Results page, many readers gave me a heads up)(12-18-1999)

  • Earnhardt Surgery UPDATE: The John Boy and Billy radio show reported this AM that Dale Earnhardt had back surgery this AM and will be out of action for six week but will be ready for Speedweeks. From what I hear is there will be a six week recoup and the doctor said that things couldn't have gone any better. They are also taking cards at the DEI shop(address on my Team Address page) Earnhardt had the surgery at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, in Winston-Salem, N.C., to repair a ruptured disc in his spinal column. The operation came as a surprise to many, even within the Earnhardt organization. See the stories at NOL: Earnhardt's back surgery a success and Racer Magazine: Earnhardt Undergoes Back Surgery(12-17-1999) -- UPDATE: Earnhardt was released from the hospital Friday evening and went home to begin his recovery process(That's Racin')(12-18-1999)

  • RJR Changes: Cliff Pennell, who took over as president of R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company's sports marketing division after the death of T. Wayne Robertson in 1998, is leaving the company. Pennell turned over the reins at Sports Marketing Enterprises to Rick Sanders in July. Sanders has been promoted to senior vice president of marketing for RJR but will continue to serve as president of SME, the division that handles the Winston brand's NASCAR sponsorships. Pennell, 42, who will leave his current post as senior vice president of marketing at the end of the year, will start his own consulting business(That's Racin')(12-18-1999)

  • #22 News: Bill Davis Racing and Ward Burton announced that Hobas Pipe USA has signed on as an associate sponsor on the #22 Caterpillar Pontiac for 2000-2002. Hobas Pipe USA, based in Houston, TX sponsored the #98 Ford driven by Rick Mast in a three race deal in May 1999(NOL)(12-18-1999)


    (12-17-1999)
  • Eel River Raving News UPDATE 4 the announcement: RPM2Nite mentioned that the #30(actually #27) Eel River Racing team will make an announcement Friday concerning their 2000 sponsor and possibly their new driver(12-13-1999) -- UPDATE: Eel River Racing general manager Barry Dodson confirmed Tuesday that the team would announce new sponsorship and a new driver Friday at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Dodson confirmed that the new driver would be "a Busch regular" but would not bite when several names were tossed at him. He said he could not confirm word that the sponsor will be a pharmaceutical company. Speculation centered on Jeff Green(Racer Magazine) I am hearing BGN regular Jeff Fuller will be the driver(12-15-1999) -- UPDATE 2: Jeff Fuller tested the #27 Pontiac at Lakeland, FL Wednesday and is expected to be named the driver of the car Friday(Winston Cup Today Radio)(12-16-1999) -- UPDATE 3: the rumored sponsor is Pfizer, a pharmaceutical company -- UPDATE 4: Pfizer Inc today announced its sponsorship of the Viagra® (sildenafil citrate) Racing Team to compete in the 2000 Cup Series. The #27 Viagra Pontiac, fielded by Eel River Racing, is part of a comprehensive initiative linking Pfizer with NASCAR fans to raise awareness of men's health issues throughout the coming year. Jeff Fuller, former NASCAR modified champion, making his Winston Cup debut(he has started on Cup race, see above story), will drive the blue-and-white Grand Prix in the 34-race series. Further terms of the agreement were not disclosed. Pfizer has been a sponsor of NASCAR teams for several years. Through the company's Consumer Health Care Group, Barbasol shaving cream was a primary sponsor of a Busch Series team beginning in 1996. In addition, Pfizer's Visine eye care products will be the primary sponsor of a Busch Series team fielded by Reiser Enterprises through the 2001 season(Keystone Marketing) also see the NOL story: Eel River puts Fuller in Viagra Pontiac, Also see an image of the car at That's Racin'(12-17-1999)

  • AND...Announcement UPDATE: Details of a one-of-a-kind partnership involving NASCAR Winston Cup Series stars Bobby Labonte, Rusty Wallace and Mark Martin will be announced at a press conference on Friday, December 17 at 2pm/et.....plus the newest NASCAR Winston Cup Series primary team sponsor will be introduced, the car will be unveiled and you'll find out what team the sponsor is backing and who will drive the car(#27 team?)(12-16-1999) -- UPDATE: Mark Martin, Rusty Wallace and Bobby Labonte will participate throughout the upcoming racing season as part of a Men's Health Tune-Up for LifeT program that is created to help educate men and their partners about common medical conditions. As part of the Men's Health Tune-Up for Life program, Pfizer will conduct on location health screenings for men prior to most Winston Cup races. The Men's Health Tune-Up for Life Trailer, a specially equipped mobile unit, will be at every racing event using questionaire or simple medical tests to screen for common medical conditions such as high cholesterol, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), depression, hypertension and erectile dysfunction. Educational materials on common health conditions will also be available. The Men's Health Tune-Up for Life Trailer has the capacity to screen more than 35,000 men during the upcoming racing season(Keystone Marketing)(12-17-1999)

  • Graves to leave Hendrick? UPDATE 2: hearing that Andy Graves has parted ways with Hendrick Motorsports and will work for......Chip Ganassi on his CART teams(12-8-1999) -- UPDATE: actually heard Graves left HMS last week and may even have been hired to help Ganassi start a Cup team in 2001 but the big push will be to run and win the Indy 500(12-10-1999) -- UPDATE 2: Graves has left Hendrick Motorsports and joined Chip Ganassi Racing. A Hendrick Motorsport spokesperson confirmed that Graves had left the team and joined Ganassi's CART/FedEx team(Winston Scene Magazine) also a story at Racer Magazine(12-17-1999)

  • New Bodine Crew Chief: Greg Ely, who was with the #75 team, has been named the crew chief for the #11 Ralph's Ford owned/driven by Brett Bodine. Rick Gay, who had been the crew chief for the last part of the 2000 season took a job with the #25 HMS team(Winston Scene Magazine)(12-17-1999)

  • Sad News: Dick Williams, 71, known around stock car circles, passed away late Wednesday afternoon following heart surgery in Charlotte, N.C. Williams is the father of Chip Williams, former NASCAR public relations head and now president of a Mooresville, N.C., public relations agency. He was a high school teacher, coach and athletic director in Charlotte, N.C., for 33 years, and spent the last 10 as a coach and athletic department administrator at Catawba College in Salisbury, N.C. Funeral arrangements will be announced later today. It is tentatively scheduled Sunday afternoon in Salisbury, N.C., with visitation Saturday night. The family will ask that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to the Dick Williams Scholarship Fund at Catawba College, which was set up this past spring(12-17-1999)

  • Wood Bros News: Former #9 Melling crew chief Newt Moore has been hired as a shock specialist for the #21 Wood Brothers CITGO team and driver Elliott Sadler(CITGO PR)(12-17-1999)


    (12-16-1999)
  • Stewart Rumors Again UPDATE: Keep hearing from folks that they hear Tony Stewart will leave the #20 Home Depot/Joe Gibbs team for one of Ray Evernham's Dodge rides and that his contract runs out next year. Stewart has said repeatedly that he is staying with Gibbs, his contract runs for two more years(2000-2001) and plans to sign an extension soon(NASCAR Today Radio(RA) - the contract part) If he ends up in a Dodge, it'll be if in the unlikely case that Gibbs switches from Pontiac to Dodge(12-15-1999) -- UPDATE: There is absolutely no truth to the rumor that Tony Stewart is leaving the #20 car and Joe Gibbs Racing(JGR). Neither is there any truth to the rumor that Ray Evernham has contacted Stewart about driving for his Dodge team. Evernham has never talked to Stewart or his attorney about driving for him. Stewart's current contract with JGR runs through the 2001 season. The details are being finalized to extend the current contract through the 2004 season with the final document expected to be ready for signing prior to year-end - from Judy Kouba Dominick, Publicist and Personal Assistant for Tony Stewart(12-16-1999)

  • NASCAR and CART.....no... an update to a post last week concerning NASCAR buying CART(see my Dec 6-12th Past News Page): "There was something fishy about recent reports that certain Champ Car team owners have made overtures to Bill France, Jr. regarding the possibility of NASCAR acquiring CART. In the past few days Racer Magazine contacted several prominent CART owners to gauge their reaction to the story. CART team owner Pat Patrick said, "It's bull...." and soon after the original story came to light, another one made the rounds suggesting the whole thing was a plant by a "disgruntled" former team owner (conceivably in an effort to boost the price of his CART stock) — a rumor that has since been confirmed by another leading CART team owner(Racer Magazine)(12-16-1999)

  • Rudd Tests: Ricky Rudd tested the #28 Texaco Ford at Lakeland, FL on Monday and Tuesday while on Wednesday #1-Steve Park, #40-Sterling Marlin and #27-Jeff Fuller tested there(Winston Cup Today Radio)(12-16-1999)

  • #85 News: driver Carl Long is back with #85 car owner Thee Dixon and the team plans to attempt races in the Cup, ARCA and CTS series. In the Cup series Long will attempt th get the #85 Mansion Decorating Ford in the Daytona, Charlotte and Bristol races. In ARCA it's the #41 Ford/Chevy at Daytona, Charlotte, Atlanta and maybe some others. In the CTS the plan is to run the #91 Ford F150 at Daytona and possibly Homestead, Martinsville and Dover. Crew chief is Keith Montgomery(12-16-1999)

  • AK's Car: A Thunderbird once raced by 1992 NASCAR Winston Cup Champion Alan Kulwicki will occupy a champion's place on Bristol Motor Speedway's pit road for the remainder of this season's edition of Fantasy In Lights.(SpeedVision)(12-16-1999)

  • #91 News: The #91 Winston Cup team of LJ Racing will once again attempt the Winston Cup Series in 2000. Joe Falk, car owner of LJ Racing, said he is excited with the new Monte Carlos, and that he can not wait for January when testing comes for the Daytona 500. Falk also stated that the sponsorship hunt is still a main factor, and that Andy Hillenburg, Rich Bickle, and Stanton Barrett are possible candidates to drive for him for the Daytona 500. With Tim Fedewa (who was Falk's driver of choice) signing elsewhere(with the #36 BGN team), Falk's intention to run in the Busch Series went with Fedewa(Catchfence)(12-16-1999)

  • Car/Sponsor Auctions: This is your chance to win an official Tony Stewart NASCAR™ "Rookie of the Year" race car. Joe Gibbs racing along with SoldUSA.com are proud to bring you this once in a lifetime chance of owning the sensational rookie's race car. This Tony Stewart race car retains the special "Habitat for Humanity" paint scheme. This particular car was raced five times and can be viewed at Joe Gibbs Racing in Huntersville, NC right outside of Charlotte, NC. See the auction at SoldUSA. Also on eBay, a Southwest Featherlite tour NASCAR team is looking for Sponsorship for one race thru an auction: NASCAR Team Looking a Product to Promote(12-16-1999)

  • Jarrett and the Vets: On Dec. 13, Jarrett took time out of what has most certainly become a hectic schedule in the weeks since claiming the title to visit with disabled American veterans at W.G. Hefner VA Medical Center, about an hour away from Jarrett's hometown in Hickory, NC. See Racing Milestones for the whole story at: www.racingmilestones.com(12-16-1999)

  • Gibbs Looking: Joe Gibbs Racing new BGN teams(#18 and #4) for 2000 are well under way and the teams are expanding. Currently the teams are seeking a qualified gear and transmission man as well as a chassis/suspension specialist(see my Team Address page for info)(12-16-1999)

  • Congrats Jerry: Posted in the Spartanburg Herald-Journal on Sunday, December 12th. #25 Hendrick Motorsports driver, Jerry Nadeau of Danbury, CT and Jada Blanchard of Spartanburg, SC wed in the Bahamas on Dec 11th, congrats(12-16-1999)


    (12-15-1999)
  • New #10: Tyler Jet Motorsports owner Tim Beverley said Wednesday that his team is preparing "without the slightest hint of hesitation" for a full run in NASCAR Winston Cup Series competition for 2000. With driver Johnny Benson secured to drive the Tyler Jet Pontiacs for 2000, Beverley said the team continues to ride the wave of positive momentum generated when it won its first-ever Bud Pole at last month's Winston Cup event at Homestead, Fla. Benson signed on the following weekend at Atlanta. In other team news, Tyler Jet Motorsports, which last week relinquished the #45 it paraded during the 1999 season, was today assigned the #10 by NASCAR. Tyler Jet was forced to begin immediate, concentrated marketing efforts to find a primary sponsor replacement in the proverbial "11th-hour" due to the unavoidable lateness of being notified that its '99 sponsor would not return for a second year. As a result, the team decided last week to temporarily suspend Busch Series plans until its 2000 Winston Cup program was in place. Tyler Jet released 20-year-old former World of Outlaws ace Tyler Walker on December 10th so he could pursue other options in NASCAR racing. Beverley emphasized he still plans to field an eventual multi-car operation. Once the season begins, the team likely will begin the slow yet meticulous process of forming a possible second Winston Cup program with the intent of running select events in late 2000. A driver for such a program has not been selected as of this date(Tyler Jet PR)(12-15-1999)

  • Martin News: Mark Martin, still flat on his back and under strict doctor's orders, nevertheless sounded upbeat and on schedule, three weeks after surgery to fuse deteriorating vertebrae in his lower back. He's bored senseless, he said Tuesday, but he believes the surgery worked as planned. See info and quotes from Martin at the Racer Magazine site(12-15-1999)

  • NJ driver and Stewart: Vineland, NJ native, Jeret Schroeder will drive for the IRL team partly owned by Tony Stewart and Larry Curry(Tri Star Motorsports). Actually, Schroeder technically is a rookie in that he is eligible for the IRL’s rookie-of-the-year competition. Schroeder started 21st and finished 15th in this year’s Indianapolis 500(Gaston Gazette)(12-15-1999)

  • Evernham Driver Close? the Winston Cup Today radio program mentioned that during Benny Parson Fasttalk radio show that Ray Evernham said he is close to signing a driver for one of his Dodge teams and hopes to make an announcement in Jan or Feb 2000(12-15-1999)

  • Bill Davis Engines: Engine builder Terry Elledge recently signed a three-year contract with Bill Davis Racing. It is the first official contract between the two since Elledge joined Bill Davis Racing at the conclusion of the 1997 NASCAR Winston Cup season(Catchfence via a PR)(12-15-1999)

  • Gordon Tests: I hear Jeff Gordon and new crew chief Robbie Loomis tested a 1999 #24 Chevy at the Greenville-Pickens(SC) Speedway(MRM)(12-15-1999)

  • Allison News UPDATE: Ampro Racing has signed Bobby Allison, NASCAR legend to be the first driver in a series of apparel to feature NASCAR legend drivers and the cars they drove to some of their famous victories. AMPRO Racing would like to have feedback from fans to help provide what they would like to see. AMPRO Racing will take requests and suggestions from fans via email at amprorac@bellsouth.net and also will keep the information to inform them when it is available via Internet sales on either AMPRO Racing website or Bobby Allison website -- UPDATE: Cale Yarborough has been added to the Legends Line as of this morning(12-15-1999)

  • Gordon Paint: Jeff Gordon will be driving a Special Silver to Blue "Chromalusion" 2000 Chevrolet Monte Carlo at the 2000 Daytona 500 and feature the NASCAR 2000 logo on the hood of the car(RPM Diecast)(12-15-1999)

  • Mast News UPDATE 2 #41: Rick Mast still isn’t saying what he’s planning to do next season, although he does admit he is close to making a decision. Mast has been talking with Larry Hedrick(#41) and with the new Misuraca-Yarborough #98 team. He also is considering a couple of other deals. Misuraca’s deal with Cale Yarborough(for buying most of the team) became final Friday. He is talking with Mast and with sponsor Universal, which has a contract with the driver, but nothing has been signed. Mast said an announcement should be made in early January(Times-Dispatch) have heard two different scenios, Mast going to the #41 with Universal as a full or part sponsor(with Exxon) and Mast to the #41 and Universal staying on the #98(12-12-1999) -- UPDATE: sources tell me it's the #41 and if Exxon comes aboard it'll be a deal similar to the Universal deal with a heavy emphasis on merchandising paying the sponsor bill, it won't be a 'factory' Exxon deal. Hearing some of the #98 crew are coming over to the #41 with Mast. As far as I have heard Donnie Disharoon will remain the crew chief. Also Team Manager Mike Hill and the #41 team have parted ways and Hill is looking for the right opportunity(12-13-1999) -- UPDATE 2: hearing so far only one team member from the #98 has left and gone to the #41 with the others waiting on Mast's decision. Also told again that the Universal contract is with the team not Mast but they want Mast as the driver(12-15-1999)

  • More #41 Info: on the teams website -- www.lhms.com, it says...."Be Sure to Visit Our Site In January When We Announce Our NEW SPONSOR AND DRIVER For The 2000 Season"(12-15-1999)

  • Sad News: Tony Stewarts former USAC Sprint and Silver Crown car owner, Glen Niebel passed away recently after battling with cancer. Stewart raced for Niebel during his Triple Crown Championship season in 1995. During Stewart's first Winston Cup victory interview and during his speech at the NASCAR Cup banquet Stewart encouraged Niebel and sent his wishes(TSFP)(12-15-1999)

  • #88 News: hearing that #88 Jackman, Mike Ford, who had been with the #88 team since it's inception, has recently left RYR. Ford was raceday jackman as well as front brake and suspension specialist on the #88(DieHard Yates Fans RYR News Page)(12-15-1999)


    (12-14-1999)
  • Team Gordon UPDATE 2: also mentioned on RPM2Nite was that Robby Gordon/Team Gordon may announce their primary sponsor for the #13 Ford on Friday -- UPDATE: one rumor has UPS as the sponsor(12-13-1999) -- UPDATE: have been told that both rumors are incorrect, there will be no announcement Friday and UPS may or may not be the sponsor, look for an announcement by Christmas from the team(12-14-1999)

  • Person of the Year: NASCAR Winston Cup Illustrated has named Kyle Petty its 1999 Person of the year for his "Charity Ride" has raised over $1.5 million in the five years it's been in existence and his food drives have provided thousands of meals for people who otherwise would have gone hungry. See the Interview and story at NOL(12-14-1999)

  • Fenley-Moore News: Damon Lusk, a twenty-two year old Kennewick, WA, has signed a contract with Fenley-Moore Motorsports of Spartanburg, SC, owners of the #15 Winston Cup Ford that Derrike Cope will drive in 2000, to drive for their ARCA program for 2000(RacingWest/Stockcarfans Newsletter)(12-14-1999)

  • Rudd Cars: John Borneman Jr. said the time was right to go NASCAR Winston West Series racing. When the cars of NASCAR Winston Cup driver Ricky Rudd went on the auction block this December 1, Borneman and son Johnny were on their way to North Carolina and ended up purchasing a short track car and a super-speedway car in the Auction(RacingWest/Stockcarfans Newsletter)(12-14-1999)

  • NASCAR formed... December 14, 1947 -- At 1 p.m. on the roof garden of the Streamline Hotel in Daytona Beach, Fla., Bill France called to order a group of men from around the country. In four days, they emerged with a new sanctioning body that not only would allow participants to compete in city to city but state to state as well. NASCAR was born(SpeedVision's Today in NASCAR History)(12-14-1999)


    (12-13-1999)
  • Kyles crew chief UPDATE and #43 Crew Chief: I hear Bobby Leslie will be Kyle Petty's new crew chief for the #44 Hot Wheels Pontiac, which as I have reported in the past will have a new look in 2000, see the images on the 2000 section of the Paint Schemes Gallery(12-10-1999) -- UPDATE: Greg Steadman has been promoted to crew chief for the #43 STP Pontiac driven by John Andretti, while Bobby Leslie joins Petty Enterprises to become crew chief for the #44 Hot Wheels Racing Pontiac driven by Petty. Shane Cook has been named car chief for the #44 and Doug Murph has been named car chief for the #43, both moving up from the same respective teams. Leslie joined Petty Enterprises earlier this year from Roush Racing, where he was Busch Grand National racing's winningest crew chief from 1992-97. He had served as crew chief for Johnny Benson's Cheerios Ford in 1998(Williams Company)(12-13-1999)


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