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PAST NEWS JAN 22-28, 2001




(1-28-2001)

(1-27-2001)
  • #77 at the Wind Tunnel, no Dodge UPDATE: hearing that Jasper Motorsports is testing a #77 Daytona car and a Intermediate car in the wind tunnel at N.A.S.A.'s Langley Research Center/ODU Wind Tunnel located in Hampton, VA today. Also, Dodge was scheduled to test some Cup cars this weekend, but canceled(1-26-2001)
    UPDATE: The ODU Wind Tunnel test was scrubbed but Ganassi Racing is instead taking a Dodge to the Martin Marietta Wind Tunnel in GA, today for a full day of testing(1-27-2001)


    (1-26-2001)
  • Whatever Happened to..Rick Wilson: Rick Wilson, last seen testing Cups a few years ago, is supposed to field a SARA Late Model Sportsman for SpeedFest 2001 at USA International Speedway in Lakeland, FL - Feb 1-4th. See the USA Speedway site for more info(Lakeland Ledger)(1-26-2001)

  • Jesse Jackson and NASCAR? UPDATE 2: Jesse Jackson and Dr Pepper to Announce Major Sponsorship of African-American NASCAR Team: Friday, January 26, 2001 at 10:30 am, Rev. Jesse Jackson, president & founder of the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, and Jack Kildoff, president & COO, Dr Pepper, will hold a press conference to announce Dr Pepper's sponsorship of the first African-American owned NASCAR racing team and driver combo in NASCAR history. The conference will be held at the New York Sheraton Hotel and Towers, 811 Seventh Avenue at 52nd St. in the Imperial Ballroom. Rainbow Sports, a division of Rev. Jackson's Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Project, initiated the sponsorship discussion with Dr Pepper and helped broker the agreement. Also attending the announcement will be the racing team owners and driver, as well as Charles S. Farrell, director of Rainbow Sports, Greg Calhoun, a diversity consultant to NASCAR and advisor to Rainbow/PUSH and Andrew Feit, V.P. of Marketing, NASCAR.(Catchfence)(1-25-2001)
    UPDATE: A press conference will be held in New York today to announce a new African-American owner-driver team that will compete in the NASCAR Racing Series Late Model Stock Division. Dr. Pepper will be sponsoring driver Morty Buckles and owner Leonard Miller Jr. The team is planning to compete out of a shop in Concord, N.C. Buckles previously owned a separate team, and his wife, Maria, worked as his crew chief. Both are engineers. NASCAR has worked with Jesse Jackson's group, the Rainbow Coalition, to develop more minority involvement in the sport. This, however, is not the first minority owner/driver pairing to compete in a NASCAR series.(Times Dispatch)
    UPDATE 2: The Rev. Jesse Jackson's Rainbow/PUSH Coalition and Dr Pepper will sponsor a NASCAR Weekly Racing Series team this season featuring a black owner and black driver. Morty Buckles of Stone Mountain, GA, will drive a Pontiac for Philadelphia-based Miller Racing Group, the team said Friday. This team will race out of Concord, N.C. In an announcement that was part of the fourth annual Wall Street Project Conference in New York, the companies said they would work together to develop minority NASCAR drivers(ESPN/AP)(1-26-2001)

  • Why No IROC for Martin? been asked, here is why: The official entry list for the 2001 IROC series does not include four-time champ Mark Martin. The field of 12 announced by IROC includes Gil de Ferran and Kenny Brack from CART, Buddy Lazier, Eddie Cheever, Scott Goodyear and Mark Dismore from the IRL, and Bobby Labonte, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Burton, Dale Jarrett, Ricky Rudd and Jeff Green from NASCAR. According to sources close to IROC, they chose to select the top five in points in Winston Cup and then extend invitations to more open-wheel racers. (In recent years, participation in the series has been dominated by stock-car drivers.) As a result, Martin did not receive an invitation(J-Mar Express Newsletter)(1-26-2001)

  • Racecar Stolen UPDATE 2 Another Theft: the #70 Star Nursery car normally driven by Greg Pursley in the Winston West series was stolen recently outside of the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. It's a 2000 Chevy Monte Carlo owned by the father of the late Chris Trickle(Dick's nephew - see my Tribute Page about Chris). See full story with ways to contact the team with info at the Racing West site(1-23-2001)
    UPDATE: Las Vegas Motor Speedway is offering a $15,000 reward(up from $5,000) for information leading to the conviction of whoever stole the #70 Star Nursery Southwest Series car(1-25-2001)
    UPDATE 2: While Andy Belmont and Rick Skinner were ARCA testing at Talladega, Skinners Ford Van, Trailer with all of his race equipment(Pit guns, jacks, tools, pit carts, generator, helmets, driving suits, tire cart) was stolen. Any info/questions can be emailed to Jack Stanton(1-26-2001)

  • TV News: Race car driver Terri O'Connell, a woman who was a man named J.T. Hayes until a sex change operation in 1992, will appear on the talk show Exhale on Oxygen TV. The show will air at 8:00pm on Tuesday, February 6th. As the man J.T. Hayes, Terri/J.T. made one Winston Cup start as Ernie Irvan's teammate with car owner Junie Donlavey in 1990 at Rockingham. Exhale is hosted by Candice Bergen(MotorsportsTV). Hayes started the #91-Ford 38th and finished 38th running 10 laps(1991 UMI Press Guide)(1-26-2001)

  • NASCAR Official Injured UPDATE: Carl Wolf, chief engine inspector, was injured in a traffic crash in late November, apparently in the Charlotte area, and remains in Carolinas Medical Center. Apparently, Wolf is in bad shape and requests "no visitors, flowers or phone calls at this stage of his treatment." SpeedVision reports that a fax asks for donations of blood in Carl's name at Red Cross offices(SpeedVision/Insider Racing site)(12-14-2000)
    UPDATE: NASCAR official Carl Wolf was hospitalized in late November of last year. Wolf was injured in an automobile accident in Concord, NC and was listed critical condition at that time and according to Winston Cup Communications manager, Danielle Humphrey, Carl Wolf is still in a Charlotte hospital and still in critical condition(Insider Racing site)(1-26-2001)

  • Catch Behind-the-Scenes Action Today and: Watch as the Fox Sports Net film crew works their special effects magic. Body Dynamics Racing Bodies, Inc. state-of-the-art paint booth is being used to film a new opening segment for the "NASCAR This MORNING" television show. You can watch the process live on Body Dynamics Racing Bodies "Body Shop Cam", go to the Body Dynamics Racing Bodies site and click on the camera
    UPDATE: The #43 BGN Chevy, fabricated by Body Dynamics Racing Bodies, Inc., turned the 2nd fastest time at 184.438mph in BGN testing at Daytona(#1-P.J. Jones was the fastest at 184.649mph). Also turning in the most consistent performance over the two days, #92-Stacey Compton and the Melling Racing team chose to do most all of their testing in just one of the two cars the team had brought to Daytona which was the fastest Dodge and the car was outfitted with a Dodge Intrepid R/T racing body fabricated by Body Dynamics Racing Bodies, Inc. See full stories at the Body Dynamics Racing Bodies site(1-25/26-2001)

  • Labonte Day: On January 18th, Bobby Labonte was presented a special recognition award honoring him for "bringing world class recognition to the community" of Ttinity City, NC. Also the City Council proclaimed Friday, January 26th, to be "Bobby Labonte Day"(1-26-2001)


    (1-25-2001)
  • Mast to the #50? UPDATE 3: hearing Rick Mast is talking to the #50 MidWest Transit team about driving for them in 2001 as Ricky Craven has left the team (to go to the #32 Tide ride). Other possibilites include Hut Stricklin and Kevin Lepage
    UPDATE: Rick Mast looms as odd man out as the final pieces fall into place for the 2001 Winston Cup season. After being told last fall he wouldn't return to the A.J. Foyt-owned #14 team, Mast was in line for the Jim Smith-owned #7 team and the #01 team of Chip Ganassi and Felix Sabates. But Smith announced late last week that Mike Wallace will be his new driver(Daily Press)(12-22-2000)
    UPDATE 2: #50 Team Mgr, Charley Pressley's first impression was right when it came to finding a replacement for driver Ricky Craven, who announced on Dec. 15 that he was leaving the team. Queried Pressley that day: "You know the guy that I'm surprised doesn't have a ride? Rick Mast." That's the driver Pressley went out and got, too, announcing Tuesday that Mast has agreed to drive for the Midwest team in 2001. "All that's left to do is dot the i's and cross the t's," Pressley said. "As soon as Ricky announced his deal, I called Rick and asked him if he didn't have anything going, would he consider us? He said he would, so he sat down with (team owner) Hal (Hicks) and talked about it. Now it's just a deal of hopefully finishing it up and getting the contracts signed." Pressley and Mast worked together on Richard Jackson's Skoal-sponsored team in the early '90s. Owner Hal Hicks plans to run no less than 26 Cup races in 2001 and his team is gearing up to run the entire slate if an associate sponsor can be found who is willing to kick in $1-2 million.(FoxSports)(1-4-2001)
    UPDATE 3: A few weeks after entering negotiations to drive the #50 Midwest Transit Chevy, Rick Mast has finally - officially - said yes to Hal Hicks' team. "We kind struck an accord around Christmas," Mast said, "and we've finalized it all now, so we'll just head on down the road and see what we can do with this thing. I'm pretty good at helping start-up teams or teams that need a boost, so I think I can help Hal and his guys." The Midwest team's engine plans for 2001 remain unsettled, which is "kind of dictating when we can test," Conner said. "We've been testing different people's motors in the car on our chassis dyno, so we've been doing a lot of in-house, in-shop testing." Conner hopes the team will get another chance to test its car prior to the Daytona 500. The team's cars for the ensuing three races - Rockingham, Las Vegas and Atlanta - are "ready to go," Conner said(1-25-2001)

  • Dodge News: Chrysler is losing more than $1 billion a quarter and over about three years, as many as 6,000 of Chrysler's 30,000 white-collar jobs, 10,000 to 15,000 of its 95,000 manufacturing workers, and about six of its 41 plants will be shut down, The Wall Street Journal reported Jan. 22. However, Dodge Motorsports officials maintain DaimlerChryler's new head's decisions won't affect its racing program(Winston Cup Scene-sub required to read)(1-25-2001)

  • #98 Info: While a team spokesman could not be reached Jan. 22, a source indicated MacPherson Motorsports will not go to Daytona. The team is continuing to search for sponsorship, but has just a skeleton crew at its shop in North Carolina(Winston Cup Scene-sub required to read)(1-25-2001)

  • Talladega Testing UPDATE: On Sunday/Monday(1-21/22), #96-Andy Houston tested at Talladega, turning laps in preparation of his rookie campaign in Winston Cup. The test session – which concluded Monday – was the first opportunity for Houston to drive a Winston Cup car at Talladega Superspeedway. Last season, he tested at Talladega with the Truck Series. Houston said the biggest news that has come out of the two-day Talladega test session is the improvements made by the #96 McDonald's PPI team. Others concluding the two-day test session were Loy Allen, Mike Swaim Jr., Matt Hutter and P.J. Jones(not sure if they were in Cup, BGN, or ARCA cars)(Talladega PR)(1-23-2001)
    UPDATE: #96-Andy Houston tested at Talladega Monday in PPI Ford Racing. Testing at the track Tuesday and Wednesday were #27-Kenny Wallace, who is still looking for a sponsor for his Eel River Racing team; #7-Mike Wallace; #31-Mike Skinner; #33(or #87 BGN)-Joe Nemechek; #59-Rich Bickle(BGN); #11-Brett Bodine; and BGN drivers #2-Kevin Harvick and #21-Mike Dillon(Anniston Star)(1-25-2001)

  • Park adds to his Daytona Schedule: MTI Racing announced that Steve Park, driver of the #1 PENNZOIL Chevy will be driving the MTI #98 C5 Chevrolet Corvette in the 2-hour Motorola Cup season opener to be held at Daytona on Friday Feb. 2 during the Rolex 24 Hour week. This announcement means a large part of the Earnhardt Racing Team has made the move to C5 Corvettes for the Rolex 24 and Motorola Cup races. Dale and Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be driving the #3 GM Factory Racing C5-R Corvette in the Grand American Rolex 24 Hour race, and now Park will be driving the #98 production-based C5 Corvette in the season opener 2-hour Motorola Cup(RaceWorks/Pennzoil PR)(1-25-2001)

  • More Penske Wind Tunnel: hearing that Penske South Racing has two #2 Fords in the wind tunnel at N.A.S.A.'s Langley Research Center located in Hampton, VA today. Supposedly they are Las Vegas/Intermediate cars with.....the Talladega/Daytona Aero Package(1-25-2001)


    (1-24-2001)
  • Texas Aero Test UPDATE 2: A speed-reducing aerodynamic package similar to one introduced at Talladega last fall is scheduled to be tested at Texas Motor Speedway(TMS) in conjunction with a tire test booked by Goodyear Racing on Jan. 22-23. Cup regular Steve Park is the only driver currently scheduled to run laps. If successful, NASCAR could implement the package before the Harrah's 500 on April 1st(Star Telegram)(1-12-2001)
    UPDATE - Plates at Texas? on Tuesday, Winston Cup driver Steve Park(#1 Pennzoil Chevy) was helping NASCAR conduct aerodynamic testing at the track. TMS GM, Eddie Gossage said there was a good chance that some form of restrictor plates, similar to those at Talladega(and Daytona), would be used at Texas(ESPN/AP)(1-24-2001)
    UPDATE 2: Steve Park tested the so-called Talladega/Daytona aerodynamic package at TMS on Monday under NASCAR supervision and wasn't impressed. Park, still at the track Tuesday for a two-day Goodyear tire test, said the changes either slowed the car too much or made it off-balance. TMS general manager Eddie Gossage and promoters of several other tracks have been lobbying NASCAR to implement the alternate aero package because it made for a thrilling race last October at Talladega. But the changes – including a taller spoiler, air deflector on the roof and more clearance under the front air dam – may not be appropriate for a midsize super speedway like TMS(Dallas Morning News)(1-24-2001)

  • TNN Motorsports Website gone? hearing that the www.country.com Motorsports site will soon cease operations. Shame they had some great stats, stories and a nice Prior Season Result section(1972-2000)(1-24-2001)

  • Qualifying: Rockingham and Darlington are the only tracks which so far have confirmed Saturday qualifying for their Winston Cup races, although NASCAR also is urging Dover to move its Cup trials to Saturday. NASCAR revealed in December that qualifying at all races this year, with the exception of the season-opening Daytona 500 -- will be condensed into one round from the traditional two rounds. Also, Pocono Raceway officials revealed that its single round of qualifying, scheduled for Friday in both cases (June 15, July 27) will be two laps instead of one(like Daytona and Talladega).(SpeedVision). See my Daytona 500/Speedweeks Info page for the 'different' Daytona 500 qualifying rules(1-24-2001)

  • Wallace testing: Kenny Wallace and Eel River Racing are testing the #27 Pontiac in Talladega on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. They will also be testing in Las Vegas on Monday and Tuesday next week in preparation for the Winston No Bull race(1-24-2001)

  • #12 in the Wind Tunnel: hearing that Penske Racing LLC is testing a new #12 Ford at the wind tunnel at N.A.S.A.'s Langley Research Center located in Hampton, VA today(1-24-2001)

  • Morgan Shepherd News UPDATE: Winston Cup veteran, Morgan Shepherd, will drive the #80 Hover Motorsports Ford at Daytona in the ARCA Race on Sunday, Feb 11th. The car will feature the Screaming Eagle logo, signifying the 101st Airborne. The 101st Airborne Division's Screaming Eagle logo will fill Shepherd's hood while sponsorship from Classic Scents Air Fresheners and Gulf State Sales(ARCA Racing Series), no word on any Winston Cup plans for Shepherd in 2001
    UPDATE: not sure where the ARCA site got the info, but am being told that Shepherd is not running the ARCA race in Daytona but that he is concentrating on the Truck race and is trying to hook up a Winston Cup ride(1-24-2001)

  • #12 News? UPDATE 2 more changes: hearing that #12 General Manager Marty Gaunt has left Penske Racing, no word on a replacement or Gaunt's plans(1-22-2001)
    UPDATE: hearing the replacement will be Jeffrey Baker who has been with the team for a few years(1-23-2001)
    UPDATE 2: also hearing that Dr. Eric Warren, chief aerodynamicist for the #12, has left the team. No word on a replacement(1-24-2001)

  • Compton and the trucks UPDATE: #92 Melling Racing driver, Stacy Compton said that he's trying to put together a deal to drive in the season-opening truck race at Daytona. Compton would likely drive for Impact Motorsports, the team he drove with before moving to Winston Cup last year(Winston Cup Scene)(1-11-2001)
    UPDATE: Melling Racing and Stacy Compton were hoping to become the first team(with the same driver) to run a Dodge in two of NASCAR's three premier divisions, the NASCAR Winston Cup Series and NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.  That goal will not be reached, yet, as the team has decided not to compete in the truck race at Daytona. "After the truck test last week, we just weren't confident that were going to be a contender in the race," said driver Stacy Compton.  "We realized that we had a lot more work to do on the truck, and with all that's going on with the new Dodge Winston Cup program, we weren't going to be able to give the truck a 110 percent effort.  We don't want to run it unless we can do it right and have a sure shot at winning.  We're going to work hard to get the truck ready to be a contender at Martinsville (April 7)." Melling Racing will field the #92 Kodiak Dodge Intrepid in the 43rd annual Daytona 500.(Melling Racing PR)(1-24-2001)


    (1-23-2001)
  • TV/Fox/Technology: Beginning with this year's Daytona 500, the spotlight is on NASCAR like never before. When more than 30 million expected viewers tune in to the Daytona 500 on Feb 18th, they will see something never before seen on a race track: The race cars of their favorite drivers will be glowing as they circle the track. Sportvision, the same company that brought you the superimposed 1st and Ten line in football(for the first down), will be debuting their new Racef/x technology at this year's Daytona 500. Racef/x is similar to the hockey puck tracking technology that Fox used in its television coverage of National Hockey League games. That puck-tracking system uses the television cameras to track the hockey puck on the ice rink, making it appear to TV viewers that the puck is glowing. Sportvision plans to do the same thing to the cars. As a viewer watches the race on TV, they will be able to choose a car. For more info on this, see the site: How Stuff Works(1-23-2001)

  • #91 News: the #91 LJ Racing team. owned by Joe Falk, that has run in Winston Cup for the last few years, will run in the ARCA race at Daytona with Blaise Alexander behind the wheel. No word on Cup plans or future BGN or ARCA events. The team is still looking for a primary sponsor for the race, Superior Logistics Service will be an associate sponsor. The team presently has 9 cars and 13 motors, ready to race. The only thing holding the team back is sponsorship(LJ Racing Site)(1-23-2001)

  • Wood Bros to the West: Jon Wood and Wood Brothers Racing announced that they will race in the NASCAR Winston West race in Phoenix on February 4, 2001. Wood will sport car #50, the same number his legendary grandfather, Glen Wood, donned when he made his first NASCAR sanctioned race more than a half century ago. Although Wood has yet to finalize his plans for the 2001 season his intentions are clear: to run some NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series or Busch Series races this season. Wood is currently seeking sponsorship for the race and feels the resources he has available for his West Coast debut will prove valuable to potential sponsors(Wood Bros Racing/Cox Marketing)(1-23-2001)

  • TV News: Mike Massaro formerly of TNN has moved to ESPN as the Winston Cup Reporter for RPM 2night and SportsCenter(1-23-2001)


    (1-22-2001)
  • #27 still looking for a sponsor UPDATE 3: Kenny Wallace, whose #27 Eel River Racing team also currently has no sponsor, came to the preview with a silver frame with the words "Sponsorship Search Continues - Cross your fingers" on a piece of paper in the frame. Wallace said his team also expects to hear a decision from a potential sponsor by midweek(That's Racin')(1-6-2001)
    UPDATE: hearing the decision from the potential sponsor was no, so that deal fell thru, but I hear the team will still attempt to run the full 2001 season
    UPDATE 2: see a full story and Wallce's quotes at the Winston Salem's PitNow: Racing Notebook(1-17-2001)
    UPDATE 3: Kenny Wallace quote - "Hi everyone, I thought I would give you an update on how things stand at Eel River Racing. I am sure you all read in Jayski that the last sponsorship deal didn’t pan out like everyone wished. This is true, but I can tell you right now everyone on the team is going forward like they would with a sponsor on the car. You can’t really tell when you look at the preparation and testing that we don’t have a sponsor yet. But don’t get me wrong WE NEED A SPONSOR! One of the biggest reasons is to simply get everyone off our backs. Nobody ever asks how the new team is doing, how good we are doing in testing, all they ask is ‘Do you have a sponsor yet?’ We need to talk more about the race car and what we can accomplish in our first 5 races and in the NO BULL at Vegas. I also want to mention all the people out there that are helping us find a sponsor. People like my brother Rusty, groups like NASCAR, RJR. Nobody out there want to see an un-sponsored car in the NO BULL in Vegas, including me! It comes down to people are starting to hold their money more then they did last year. Corporations are a little upset about the stock market and how things have changed in the last 6 months and they simply are not as willing to take as big a risk as they were last year. That’s where we are stuck at. We are going to weather the storm and in the long run give some Sponsor the ride of their life. The cars are great! The sponsor is a burden on the team with all the people asking, once we get around that problem the whole team will focus on what I think is going to be the BEST year for Kenny Wallace and Eel River Racing. I can feel it! Thanks everyone, I say it a lot but I mean it. I have the best fans in NASCAR, I know that, and I want to thank them for hanging in there and backing me. I tell you this. When we do find a sponsor we can all relax and enjoy a great racing season."(Kenny Wallace Racing Site)(1-22-2001)


    (1-21-2001)
    see the Jan 15-21, 2001 Archived News Page


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