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    AUGUST 22-28, 2005

      News from August 28, 2005

    • Green and Kyle back at PE in 2006: Kyle Petty and Jeff Green will both return as the drivers of the #43 and #45 cars next year, Petty confirmed Saturday. Petty, 45, said he is not sure how much longer he will keep racing, but he doesn’t see his retirement any time in the immediate future. The son of NASCAR legend, Richard Petty, still loves to drive. "No 9-year-old kid goes to bed at night dreaming about signing autographs at Target," Petty said. "You dream about driving a racecar. As long as I still love driving a racecar, I can put up with the other stuff."(Bristol Herald Courier)(8-28-2005)

    • Rusty honored II: In the prerace ceremonies, Bristol Motor Speedway track officials announced that the grandstand in turns 1 and 2 would be renamed The Rusty Wallace Grandstand. It was a very emotional moment. Wallace was fighting back tears.(Yahoo Sports)(8-28-2005)

    • Rusty Honored at Bristol: Bobby Allison, NHRA great Don Prudhomme and others were on hand to honor Rusty Wallace on the occasion of his final Bristol race. A card section in turns one and two spelled out “Rusty” in white letters on a blue background. Bristol Motor Speedway presented Wallace with a trophy that included an elaborate model of the track where he was bidding for his 10th victory. Bristol’s all-time leader in victories was Darrell Waltrip, who had 12 at the time of his retirement. Notable by his absence was Mark Martin, who was apparently not honored because of the likelihood that he will compete in Cup again next year while successor, Jamie McMurray, remains under contract to Chip Ganassi’s team.(Gaston Gazette)(8-28-2005)

    • Wally's World: Movie director Quentin Tarantino [Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill, Resevoir Dogs (jayski faves) and others], a native of Knoxville, Tenn., will take a ride around Bristol Motor Speedway with TNT analyst Wally Dallenbach Jr. today for the network's prerace show [7:00pm/et on TNT](Richmond Times Dispatch)(8-27-2005)
      UPDATE: Quentin Tarantino, a NASCAR novice, was treated to several hair-raising laps in a stock car Saturday that left the eccentric film director speechless at Bristol Motor Speedway. "Yeah, Baby! That's what I'm talking about!" he yelled after several seconds of silence. "That was incredible. I didn't 100 percent know what to expect when I got here. I was very open to be intoxicated, and I most definitely was." Tarantino was introduced to NASCAR by good friend Mauricia Grant, a Busch Series official who lives near him in Hollywood. When he asked her about attending a race, she encouraged him to choose Bristol -- a short track where the bumping, banging and post-race altercations can be as intense as an action scene from "Pulp Fiction" or "Kill Bill." She also arranged for him to take a ride with TNT commentator Wally Dallenbach, who drives a celebrity around the track each week as part of his "Wally's World" segment. Recent ride-along partners have ranged from actors Ben Affleck, Jamie Foxx, David Spade and singer Lisa Marie Presley, who has made a point to publicly complain about how Dallenbach intentionally tried to scare her during a ride last month. "You're not going to whine after this ride like Lisa Marie Presley, are you?" Dallenbach asked during the warm-up laps. There was no whining when it was over. Just a brief silence as Tarantino soaked in the adrenaline rush. After, he said he asked Dallenbach to make the ride as scary as possible with close-calls with the Bristol walls. "That part that was in the wall, that was the bomb. I wanted a lot of wall time and Wally gave me the wall time." Tarantino's day didn't end with his ride. After watching Friday night's Busch race from one of the suites -- he said he rooted for Kevin Harvick and had been cheering on Harvick to "crash [Greg Biffle] into the wall" -- he was scheduled to stick around for Saturday night's main event and watch it from the pit Grant was working in. But it was clear that Tarantino was hooked. He was making plans to take a lesson in the Richard Petty Driving Experience next week at California Speedway, and possibly attend the race. "I love it," he said. "This is, in one word -- adrenaline." See full AP article at

      News from August 27, 2005

    • Kenseth dominates in win at Bristol: #17-Matt Kenseth won the Sharpie 500 at the Bristol Motor Speedway, dominating the race by leading 415 of 500 laps and vaulting himself into 11th in Drivers Points, only 11 points out of 10th. The win is Kenseth's first in 56 races, when he won at Las Vegas in March 2004. The win is the 10th of his career. #31-Jeff Burton was 2nd, his best finish since his 3rd at Phoenix in April. The rest of the top-5 were #16-Greg Biffle, who was a lap down and got the lucky dog, #21-Ricky Rudd and #2-Rusty Wallace. Points leader, #20-Tony Stewart lingered around 15-20th most of the race, but was able to come home 8th and increased his points lead to 213 points over #48-Jimmie Johnson who DNF'd with a broken motor. #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. went down a lap three times, got the lucky dog all three times and after the crew made numerous changes, Dale Jr. finished 9th. #24-Jeff Gordon finished 6th and is now 10th in the points and currently in the Chase for the Nextel Cup, leading 11th in points #17-Kenseth by 11 points. #88-Dale Jarrett let his emotions get the best of him and took out #12-Ryan Newman, along with himself and innocent #29-Kevin Harvick [who should had followed #25-Vickers thru the wreck]. Newman had spun Jarrett a few laps before and Jarrett caught up to Newman a few laps later and hit Newman in the rear, spinning both, pretty much killing Harvick's chance of making The Chase and really hurting Jarrett's chance. Newman is still in the Chase, in 9th. #0-Mike Bliss made a late race charge, after getting spun out in the Jarrett/Harvick mess and getting a Lucky Dog, finishing 7th for his best finish of the season.
      For my race rundown with lap leaders, caution info, race notes and lucky dogs, see my Bristol Race Info/Rundown Page
      For race results and links, see Jayski's Bristol Race Results Page. (8-27-2005)

    • The Chase for the Nextel Cup: All drivers listed 19th in Drivers Points and above are still mathematically eligible for the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup. #20-Tony Stewart, #48-Jimmie Johnson and #16-Greg Biffle have clinched spots in the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup. #2-Rusty Wallace will clinch a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup when he starts the Sony HD 500 at California Speedway. #6-Mark Martin will clinch a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup with a finish of fifth place or better in the Sony HD 500 at California Speedway. #19-Jeremy Mayfield, #97-Kurt Busch and #99-Carl Edwards have a mathematical chance of clinching a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup in the Sony HD 500 at California Speedway. At a minimum, at least two spots in the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup will be up for grabs going into the Chevy Rock and Roll 400 at Richmond International Raceway.(NASCAR Statistical Services)(8-28-2005)

    • Double Triples: Mike Wallace and Kyle Busch both ran all three races at Bristol this weekend, Truck Series [Wed], Busch Series [Fri] and Cup Series at Bristol Motor Speedway, how did they do?:
      Kyle Busch (all Chevy's):
      #15 Truck, started 9th, finished 5th
      #5 Busch, started 1st, finished 38th
      #5 Cup started 11th, finished 33rd
      Mike Walllce
      #12 Toyota Truck, started 11th, finished 9th
      #38 Busch Dodge, started 31st, finished 14th
      #4 Cup Chevy started 15th, finished 17th

    • Riggs signs with EMS to run #10 Dodge in 2006 UPDATE 3: The runner-up finish [at Michigan] for #10-Scott Riggs was the best of his two years in the Cup Series and came at a time when there is a big question mark over where he will race after this year. Riggs could re-sign with MB2 Motorsports, which brought him to NASCAR's top series, but there are also reports he will follow current sponsor Valvoline to Evernham Motorsports, joining current Evernham drivers Mayfield and Kasey Kahne in 2006. "What, what I can tell you right now is that nothing is in stone yet," Riggs said after Sunday's race. "I'm sure that things will be happening pretty quick here the next week or two. But this run doesn't dictate what's going to happen for me next year. This run just helps all the guys with their morale and keeping their chins up and knowing we're going the right kind of things that we need to do. It doesn't affect next year."(, Sterling Marlin is rumored to replace in the un-numbered MB2 Chevy.(8-22-2005)
      UPDATE: hearing that Scott Riggs has signed a 2-year deal to drive the #10 Valvoline Dodge for Evernham Motorsports and the deal will be announced at Bristol.(8-24-2005)
      UPDATE 2: Evernham Motorsports to announce plans for the #10 Valvoline Dodge at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday, Aug 27th around 2:45pm/et.(8-25/27-2005)
      OFFICIAL Valvoline Evernham Racing, a partnership between Valvoline and Evernham Motorsports, announced that Scott Riggs will be the driver of the #10 Valvoline Dodge Charger in the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series in 2006. Evernham Motorsports and Valvoline entered into a partnership earlier this year for the team which will operate from the recently completed third facility at the Evernham Motorsports complex. Valvoline will be the primary sponsor for the #10 Valvoline Dodge Charger for at least 22 races and an associate sponsor for the #10 Dodge Charger for the remaining events on the 2006 NASCAR Nextel Cup schedule. In addition to maintaining the inventory of racecars, Evernham will also provide engines and the team will have full access to Evernham R&D. Riggs is currently in his second season of competition in the Nextel Cup Series as the driver of the MBV #10 Valvoline Chevy. In 58 events, Riggs has three top-five and six top-10 finishes, including a second-place finish at Michigan. He claimed his first career pole earlier this year at Martinsville. A crew chief for the team will be announced later. Much of the team personnel will transfer to the #10 team from Evernham Motorsports' #91 team. The third full-time team allows Evernham Motorsports to continue to grow and expand its operations. An expanded stable allows Evernham Motorsports to accelerate its R&D efforts, increase its test dates [doesn't look like that in 2006], enhance its ability to collect and analyze data and make improvements more quickly and efficiently. "This is a new era in Valvoline's long racing tradition," said Valvoline Designated Team Owner Jim Rocco. "As is the case with our current team, Valvoline will leave the running of the team - the competition, personnel and equipment - to Ray and his team. Valvoline's expertise is marketing and we will continue to make our NASCAR Nextel Cup Series racing effort serve the needs of our family of brands, which include Valvoline, Eagle One and Zerex." The paint scheme for the #10 Valvoline Dodge Charger will be unveiled later this year.(Clear!Blue/Evernham Motorsports PR)(8-27-2005)

    • #49 Team/Driver docked points and fined UPDATE appeal: NASCAR announced today that three penalties have been issued to the #49 Dodge team in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series as a result of rules infractions last weekend at Michigan. The penalties were issued because of a roof height that was too low, a violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing), and Section 12-4-Q (car, parts, components and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series rule book. This infraction was discovered during post-race inspection. Ken Schrader, driver of the #49, was penalized with the loss of 25 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series driver championship points. Car owner Beth Ann Morgenthau was penalized with the loss of 25 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series owner championship points. Crew chief David Hyder was fined $25,000 and placed on probation until Dec. 31.(NASCAR)(8-24-2005)
      UPDATE: #49 BAM Racing is appealing its penalty from last week's race at Michigan. NASCAR fined the team points and money for failing the minimum height requirement. The team blames a broken shock absorber.(Daily Record)(8-27-2005)

    • Tracy to Hall of Fame Racing? UPDATE: Paul Tracy is interested in driving for Troy Aikman's and Roger Staubach's Hall of Fame Racing team. Tracy had a friend contact HOF about adding him to the list of candidates to pilot the Nextel Cup ride next season.(Dallas Morning News), see past news on the team at my HOF Racing Team News page.(8-26-2005)
      UPDATE: The word 'if' has all but disappeared from Paul Tracy's vocabulary when he talks about his future in NASCAR. The 2003 Champ Car World Series champion now talks in terms of 'when' as he discusses the next step in his transformation from open wheel star to stock car driver. In an interview on the eve of the first day of qualifying for the Molson Indy of Montreal, Tracy also revealed for the first time he would be willing to apprentice in the NASCAR Busch Series or the Craftsman Truck Series if he got the right deal. Tracy, the winningest active driver in Champ Car and the only series driver who's celebrity crosses over into the general sports field, admitted that after testing the #33 RCR Chevrolet at MIS there was much to learn about driving the big sedans and that going to Busch or trucks would not be a bad idea. "The Busch series is certainly an option," Tracy said. Tracy also hinted for the first time that there may be other NASCAR teams who have inquired about him driving for them, if the RCR deal somehow doesn't work out. "There are a lot of options right now in NASCAR, whether I can find one that suits me I don't know yet," he said. Tracy is looking at more testing with RCR before deciding which Nextel Cup race he'll attempt to make his debut. "Richard wants me to do a 500-mile engine durability test," Tracy said. That means there will likely be two opportunities for Tracy to Cup race this season. "We are looking at entering either Atlanta (Oct. 30) or Homestead (Nov. 20)," he said.(Toronto Sun)
      AND Tracy said he also has been contacted by the new Hall of Fame Racing team, co-owned by former Dallas Cowboys quarterbacks Troy Aikman and Roger Staubach and Trans-Am driver Bill Saunders in conjunction with Joe Gibbs Racing. "I've talked with Troy on the phone and we're going to set up a meeting at some point," Tracy said.(

    • Kenseth to renew with Roush? #17-Matt Kenseth, after watching all the fallout from other driver negotiations the past few weeks, is expected to quickly sign a contract renewal with car owner Jack Roush.(Winston Salem Journal)(8-27-2005)

    • Marlin to MB2 in 2006? UPDATE 2: hearing that Sterling Marlin could be part of the MB2 Motorsports stable of drivers in 2006, replacing Scott Riggs. MB2 is also grooming 20-year-old World of Outlaws driver Kraig Kinser. The 20-year-old driver is part of MB2's driver development program and will make his MB2 debut today in the ARCA race at Michigan International Speedway. He qualified second for the ARCA event. Kinser, son of racing legend Steve Kinser, won Sunday's Knoxville National in central Iowa, the most prestigious event in the World of Outlaws series.
      the #10 Valvoline team with driver Scott Riggs is losing Valvoline as the sponsor and will change car numbers, hearing either #35 or #02, rumored sponsors include: Allstate, Big Lots or/and State Farm. Riggs had a contract extension on the table, but MB2 recently pulled it. Riggs could end up in Evernham Motorsports #10 Valvoline Dodge.(8-19-2005)
      UPDATE: Sterling Marlin has talked to MB2 Motorsports about taking over what's now the #10 car for next season. MB2 Motorsports GM Jay Frye says Marlin is on his short list. Sponsorship and a car number have not been decided, but the team has petitioned NASCAR for 02 or 35. Current driver Scott Riggs, who finished a career-high second at Michigan, is expected to continue with Valvoline and the No. 10 at Evernham Motorsports.(Sporting News)(8-22-2005)
      UPDATE 2: Sterling Marlin appears headed to MB2 Motorsports next season as a teammate of Joe Nemechek, although the veteran racer from Columbia said yesterday the deal is not finalized. "It's a good team with a good engine program," Marlin said. "Joe has won with it." Marlin is expected to take over the team's #10 Chevrolet [will be #35 or #02] currently driven by Scott Riggs. Riggs will move [with the car #10 and Valvoline] to Evernham Motorsports next year. "We're still talking," Marlin said of MB2. "We should know something soon."(Tennessean)(8-27-2005)

    • No Toyota in 2006 for Busch or Cup: Sources close to Toyota have confirmed that the Japanese automaker will not field a NASCAR Busch or Nextel Cup series car in 2006.(Speed Channel), see past news on Toyota on my Toyota News Page.(8-27-2005)

    • Penske denies Kenny Wallace rumor: Penske Racing South officials strongly denied rumors that Kenny Wallace was a candidate to replace brother Rusty next year in the team’s #2 Miller Lite-sponsored Dodge if #97-Kurt Busch can’t get out of the final year of his contract with Roush Racing. Roush officials said earlier in the week that it likely will be several weeks before a decision about Busch’s fate for next year would be reached. Busch has signed a contract to drive the #2 in 2007, but is hoping for an early release from his current deal so he can move to Penske next year.(Speed Channel)(8-27-2005)

    • Yeley in the #11 at California UPDATE Hamlin at Kansas: Joe Gibbs Racing will turn to Busch Series driver J.J. Yeley to drive the #11 Fed Ex Chevy for the Auto Club 500 at California Motor Speedway on Sunday, September 4.(JGR PR), Denny Hamilin, JGR other Busch Series driver, supposedly will drive the car at Kansas, Yeley will be in a 4th JGR car [#80?] there.(8-25-2005)
      UPDATE: Denny Hamlin will make his Nextel Cup debut at Kansas Speedway on Oct. 9. The 24-year-old Busch Series [#20 Joe Gibbs Racing Chevy] rookie, one of three drivers replacing Jason Leffler in the #11 Fed Ex Chevy the rest of the year, also will run the next three races on the schedule - at Lowe's Motor Speedway, Martinsville and Atlanta.(Richmond Times Dispatch)(8-27-2005)

    • Petty-Riggs: College Rivalry schemes at Homestead: Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, the Florida Gators, and the Florida State Seminoles, unveiled its #10 Seminole and #45 Gator stock cars that will compete at the final Cup Series season event at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 20th. Scott Riggs will drive the #10 Checkers Florida State University Chevy, and Kyle Petty will drive the #45 Checkers University of Florida Dodge. This sponsorship is designed to give sports fans one more opportunity to gear up for the intra-Florida rivalry on the football field set for the following week. The Company expects to create excitement due to the tremendous fan cross-over among the two sports. In September, new collectible #10 Florida State Seminole and #45 Florida Gator cups will be available at nearly 150 Checkers restaurants in Florida. During the unveiling of the new cars at Bristol Motor Speedway, Checkers pledged $5,000 to both Riggs' and Petty's charities: Carolina Donor Services and the Victory Junction Gang, respectively. An additional $5,000 will be donated to the race-within-a-race winner's charity on November 20th. The cars can be purchased online at or by calling 1-877-212-6017, and are also being sold through school newsletters, newspapers, Web sites, and onsite during university home football games. A portion of the proceeds of the sale of the die casts benefits the scholarship programs at both schools.(PR)(8-27-2005)

    • Burton Announcement UPDATE: Jeff Burton, driver of the #31 Cingular Wireless Chvey for RCR will hold a press conference Friday, August 26 at 4:00pm/et at Bristol Motor Speedway to announce a new partnership.(RCR)(8-25-2005)
      UPDATE - Burton Announces Campaign to Improve Teen Driver Safety: Jeff Burton announced his campaign to improve teenage driver training during a press conference at Bristol Motor Speedway. Burton joins the board of directors of Advanced Car Control Techniques, parent company of the New Driver Car Control Clinic, the nation's leading provider of behind-the-wheel accident avoidance and defensive driving for teens and their parents. The New Driver Car Control Clinic is a six-hour program for teens and their parents (the Clinic does not accept a teen without a parent) where students perform a series of exercises learning how to use their eyes, hands and feet to identify obstructions and steer the vehicle away from them under heavy breaking. Clinics are currently conducted in Florida, Georgia, Ohio, Tennessee, Alabama, Maryland and the Washington, DC area. The training has proven results. In a study conducted by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, graduates of the New Driver Car Control Clinic had 77% fewer crashes than their peers. For additional information on the New Driver Car Control Clinic please visit PR)
      AND The Dale Earnhardt Foundation has partnered with four-time road racing champion Andy Pilgrim in the release of "The Driving Zone" DVD for new drivers. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. assists Pilgrim in the instructional portions. More info at the DEI site.(8-27-2005)

    • Sad News: Bruce Franklin Bell, a former pit crew member for Junie Donlavey's team, died unexpectedly on Sunday. The 38-year-old from Chester changed front tires on the #90 Ford during the 1998 and 2001 seasons.(Richmond Times Dispatch)(8-27-2005)

      News from August 26, 2005

    • The Poole Rule: Charlotte Observer motorsports writer David Poole believes that giving Nextel Cup drivers a 500-point bonus for their first win (not for each win, just the first) in the season's first 26 races, then resetting and giving the same bonus for a driver's first win during the Chase would make winning races the sport's top priority. To see what the standings would look like now if this rule was in place goto

    • Changes for 2006: NASCAR met with Nextel Cup teams to discuss 2006 testing logistics, templates and impound schedules:
      Manufacturers will each have six tests where all teams under that brand will be allowed on the track. Those six tracks include Indianapolis, Daytona, Texas, Richmond, Charlotte and Homestead.
      Template changes include the identity templates on the new Fusion and Monte Carlo. The new Dodge nose has yet to be approved.
      All but five races [both Texas] - which have existing pole day sponsors - will be impound events.
      The most dramatic change will be in testing. Not only will multi-car teams be limited to testing at six tracks, but teams must lease tires from Goodyear at each test and return the tires at the end of the session.(Sporting News/Lee Spencer)(8-24-2005)

    • Kenseth wins pole at Bristol: in a little bit of a shocker, #17-Matt Kenseth won the Budweiser Pole for the Sharpie 500 at the Bristol Motor Speedway with a speed of 127.300mph, nudging #24-Jeff Gordon off the pole. Kenseth went out late, 47th of 49 drivers, winning his first pole of 2005, 1st since Dover in May of 2002, a 118 races ago and only 2nd of his career. Gordon held on to 2nd, followed by #07-Dave Blaney, #16-Biffle and #21-Rick Rudd. Points leader #20-Tony Stewart, in a backup car, qualified 17th. #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. was slow and qualified 43rd and will start 41st. #32-Bobby Hamilton Jr. was the highest of the non-top 35 teams, qualifying 8th.
      For speeds, starting lineup, pole progression, rookies and more on Jayski's Bristol Qualifying/Practice/Starting Grid Page.(8-26-2005)

    • Long adds sponsor at Bristol: #00-McGlynn Racing is going to help the #37 R.J. Motorsports team out by putting their sponsor, on the hood of the #80 Chevy that Carl Long will start 43rd in the Sharpie 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday. Also some #37 team members will help pit Long's car.(Carl Long site)(8-26-2005)

    • So...why is qualifying sometimes tape delayed on TV? from In this week's "Ask the Producer" question, we deal with a popular inquiry. Several users want to know why TNT has been showing Bud Pole Qualifying on a tape-delayed basis.
      "The change by NASCAR this year to its on-track weekend schedule of events precipitated us to cluster Nextel Cup qualifying and Busch Series racing for select races to better accommodate the television viewing audience, which has resulted in increased ratings for both properties," said TNT spokeman Jeff Pomeroy. "For those select instances where our schedule is clustered and diehard fans need instantaneous qualifying results they can go to NASCAR.COM for up-to-minute results." Each week, chooses a fan's question to ask about NASCAR on NBC/TNT producer.(

    • Cingular concerts at Bristol: To help fans gear up for one of the most exciting races of the season, Cingular Wireless is bringing a star-studded list of musical acts to Bristol, Tenn., this week. The Cingular Rockin' and Racin' Concert Series kicked off at Earhart Station on Thursday, and includes six country western and rock and roll musical acts leading up to the big race on Saturday night. The festival marks the inaugural event as part of Cingular's recent deal to sponsor the campground area, which is located adjacent to the speedway. The deal gives Cingular activation rights at the facility during each of the year's two Cup races.
      Rockin' and Racin' got underway Thursday, August 25, when the Wayne Mills Band played. Other high profile musical acts include Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Drivin' N' Cryin,' Supercharger, Forty5 South and the Wild West Picture Show. The concert series includes three acts each on Friday and Saturday, leading up to the drop of the green flag at the speedway on Saturday evening. See below for a full schedule or visit for more details.
      In addition to the big-name musical talent hitting the stage at Earhart Station, Cingular will provide fans with an assortment of entertainment options, including racing simulators set up at the stage areas, as well as the Cingular Pit Stop. This mobile, interactive fan experience offers racing-related video games, tire changing competitions and other race-centric activities. At Pit Stop, fans can also interact with the latest Cingular products and services, charge their wireless phones, make a free call, send a free text message or sample picture messaging. Additionally, as part of Cingular's new content deal with popular racing Web site, customers will also be able to register to receive periodic text alerts from Jayski on breaking news from the track.
      The following is a schedule of activities at the Cingular Rockin' and Racin' Concert Series: Friday, August 26:
      1 p.m. - Supercharger
      2:45 p.m. - Wild West Picture Show
      5 p.m. - Kenny Wayne Shepherd
      Saturday, August 27
      Noon - Supercharger
      2 p.m. - Wild West Picture Show
      4 p.m. - Drivin' n' Cryin'
      (Career Sports & Entertainment)(8-26-2005)

    • CertainTeed to be primary Sponsor for #0 at Bristol: CertainTeed Corporation announced a one-race, primary sponsorship of the Haas CNC Racing #0 Chevy and driver Mike Bliss for this weekend’s Sharpie 500 NASCAR Nextel Cup race at the Bristol Motor Speedway. “This is an exciting opportunity for CertainTeed to significantly showcase our brand and company to the millions of fans who watch NASCAR each week,” says Peter Dachowski, President and CEO of CertainTeed Corporation. “Mike Bliss and Haas CNC Racing have been a true pleasure to work with and have helped elevate our brand with our customers, remodeling and building professionals, and consumers.” As a primary one-race sponsor of the Haas CNC Racing #0 entry, CertainTeed will be prominently featured in a special paint scheme designed for the company. In addition, as part of the company’s ongoing associate sponsorship, the company’s logo is positioned on the left arm of Bliss’ uniform and all Haas CNC Racing uniforms, merchandise, pit row equipment and the car hauler. Through innovation and creative product design, CertainTeed Corporation has helped shape the building products industry for more than 100 years. Founded in 1904 as General Roofing Company, CertainTeed Corporation made its slogan "Quality Made Certain, Satisfaction Guaranteed," which quickly inspired the name CertainTeed. More info at
      UPDATE: see image of the car on my #0 Team Schemes page.(8-26-2005)

    • Qualifying Notes:
      • Matt Kenseth won the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Bud Pole for the Sharpie 500, lapping Bristol Motor Speedway in 15.073 seconds at 127.300 mph. Ryan Newman track-qualifying record of 14.908 seconds, 128.709 mph, set March 21, 2003.
      • This is Kenseth’s second career Bud Pole in 208 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races. His other Bud Pole was at Dover in May 2002, 119 races ago.
      • This is Kenseth’s fourth top-10 start in 10 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway.
      • Kenseth became the 15th different Bud Pole winner this season.
      • There have been 10 different Bud Pole winners in the last 14 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup races at Bristol Motor Speedway, but only three in the past eight. Jeff Gordon (four), Ryan Newman (two) and Rusty Wallace (two) are the repeat Bud Pole winner in the 14-race period.
      • Jeff Gordon posted the second-quickest qualifying lap of 15.085 seconds, 127.199 mph – and will join Kenseth on the front row for the Sharpie 500. Gordon his 23rd top-10 start in his 26 races at Bristol. It is his eight straight top-five start here. This is his 11 th top 10 start this season.
      • This is the fourth Bud Pole for Ford in 2005 and second in the past four races. Chevrolet has 10 Bud Poles and Dodge has eight. Qualifying was canceled at Dover and second Michigan.
      • Dave Blaney (third) posted his third top-10 start in 10 races at Bristol. He started second here in the spring race this season and eighth in the spring of 2001.
      • Greg Biffle (fourth) scored his fourth top-10 start in six races at Bristol, all in the past four races. It is his 15th top-10 start this season.
      • Ricky Rudd (fifth) Rudd, who posted 13 top-10 starts in his first 18 races at Bristol posted his 28th top-10 start overall here. It is his just his third in his past 13 races here.
      • Ryan Newman (sixth) posted his Series-leading 22nd top-10 start of 2005. Newman has started form the top-10 in all but one of his eight Bristol races.
      • Forty-eight races at Bristol have been won from the first four starting positions (54%).
      • Only 16 races have been won from a starting position outside the top 10, including six of the past nine.
      • The furthest back in the field that a Bristol race winner has started was 38th by Elliott Sadler in the 2001 Food City 500.(NASCAR Statistical Services)(8-26-2005)

    • Ramblings - Bristol:
      Might wanna right this one sure hasn't happened very often. Matt Kenseth grabbed the Bud Pole today for tomorrow night's Sharpie 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway by edging Jeff Gordon by a little over 1/100th of a second. His speed of 127.300 (15.073 sec) was good enough for only the second pole of his Cup career. The last time he started from the top-spot was at Dover in September of 2003 (qualifying was rained out and the race lined up by points), then he had the top-spot at Loudon in July of 2003 (the same scenario as at Dover), so this is his first Bud Pole by time since he led 'em to the green at Dover in June of 2002! He becomes the 15th different driver to capture a pole award this season.
      Dave Blaney (3rd) has his best starting spot since he had the outside pole when we were here in April.
      Ken Schrader (7th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 7th at Talladega in September of 2003.
      Bobby Hamilton Jr (8th) had his best qualifying run since he grabbed the outside pole at Atlanta in March.
      Mike Wallace (15th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 13th at Daytona in July of 2002!
      Johnny Benson (21st) has his best starting spot since he qualified 21st at Homestead in November of 2003 (only 6 races).
      Stanton Barrett (36th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 23rd when we were here in April (only 4 races).
      STREAKIN....Ryan Newman has 7 Top-10 starts in a row.
      Ricky Rudd has 4 Top-10 starts in the last 5 races. (Stock Car Fans)(8-26-2005)

      News from August 25, 2005

    • The Softball Champs: Chip Ganassi Racing Won the NASCAR Softball Championship 22 to 9 against Hendrick Motorsports on Tuesday night [Aug 23]. Team photo and players names are on

    • HOF Racing Jobs and needs space: Hall of Fame Racing (owned by Roger Staubach, Troy Aikman) has started the process of interviewing crew chiefs and drivers for the upcoming season. The team is also looking for all other positions AND Hall of Fame Racing is currently looking for some temporary shop space to hold the team over for 4 or 5 months while the building they're (planning on) moving into is completed. They'd prefer something that has some minor fabrication equipment and enough space for 8-10 cars. The team is currently accepting resumes for all positions. More info and how to send resumes or contatct the team on my Racing Schools/Jobs page.(8-25-2005)(

    • Bobby Allison looking to start a NASCAR Pension: Bobby Allison wants to start a pension fund for retired NASCAR drivers. At 67, he should be the poster boy. There is no greater driver in greater need. Just this spring, he paid off the last of the medical bills from his career-ending injuries of 1988. His only guaranteed income is his Social Security check. "That certainly is a very welcome help, but it doesn't match the need at the moment," he said Sunday, standing inside Michigan International Speedway, virtually unnoticed by current-generation drivers, crewmen, officials, corporate CEOs and fans. "At the moment" was a phrase he added out of pride. Bobby Allison has been broke for 17 years. See the full article by Ed Hinton at the Orlando Sentinel.
      AND there will be a Bobby Allison book signing at the Rusty Wallace trailer on Saturday, starting at 3:00pm/et at Bristol Motor Speedway, more info on Allison's book at Bobby Allison: A Racer's Racer.(8-25-2005)

    • Helton Says NASCAR Can't Interfere In Driver Contracts: Last Sunday at Michigan International Speedway, NASCAR's president Mike Helton, said that it's not NASCAR's place to get in the middle of driver-owner contract disputes and also has no power to institute a "No Contact" policy, such as the stick and ball sports have to prevent another team contacting a player under contract for purposes of luring that player away. "The way NASCAR is structured, with the independentness of the sanctioning body and the car owner -- there's not a way for us to do that now, even if we desired to," said Helton, "I'm not sure that the drivers and the car owners in particular, historically, and even today with what's in the headlines, they still don't necessarily want NASCAR in the middle of that relationship right now. There's not a way of doing it and we're really not pursuing a way to figure out how to do it. The difference between NASCAR and Football, Baseball and Basketball is that the NASCAR structure is all independent contractors. They're not cohesive like the other stick and ball sports are."(Insider Racing News)(8-25-2005)

    • MRN partners with Spanish Radio Network: MRN Radio "The Voice of NASCAR" and the nation's largest independent sports network, announced today a new partnership with Radiovisa. Radiovisa is a 24/7 Spanish-language talk radio network that produces and distributes syndicated and network radio programming, targeting U. S. Hispanics. MRN Radio and Radiovisa will provide live flag-to-flag coverage of five select NASCAR events in predominately Hispanic markets including coverage of the California 300 NASCAR Busch Series event and the Sony HD 500 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series event at California Speedway. Additional coverage will include the Banquet 400 at Kansas Speedway, the Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, and the season-ending Ford Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. MRN Radio and Radiovisa will also produce daily radio programming covering the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series and the Chase for the NASCAR Nextel Cup Championship.(MRN Radio PR)(8-25-2005)

    • Burton testing at NHIS: Following the race weekend at Bristol, #31-Jeff Burton and Team Cingular will head to New Hampshire International Speedway for a test session Tuesday, August 30 in preparation for the upcoming Sylvania 300 September 18.(RCR)(8-25-2005)

    • Special Scheme for the #22: Scott Wimmer is scheduled to run a Car Rental schemes at Bristol in August.(5-11-2005)
      AND This weekend, the #22 Caterpillar car’s paint scheme highlights CAT Rental Stores, which offers a full range of Caterpillar products and other brand name equipment and specialized tools to meet all job site needs. CAT Rental Stores rent newer equipment that is fully serviced by expert mechanics, so it’s ready to work when you are. For more information and to find the CAT Rental Store location nearest you in the U.S. and Canada, call 1-800-RENT-CAT.(Bill Davis Racing), see an image of the scheme on my #22 Team Schemes page.(8-25-2005)

    • Wimmer testing at RIR: Scott Wimmer and the #22 Caterpillar team will have a one-day test at Richmond International Raceway Wednesday, Aug. 31, in preparation for the upcoming Chevy Rock & Roll 400 at RIR in September.(Bill Davis Racing)(8-25-2005)

    • Chef on the Pit Box: Iron Chef: One of the most recognizable chefs in the country, Mario Batali, will be sitting atop the Target pit box at Bristol on Saturday night. Batali owns and operates several New York City restaurants, appears regularly on the Food Network and is an avid NASCAR fan. Batali is currently working on a cookbook called “Mario Tailgates NASCAR Style” in conjunction with The Sporting News.(Chip Ganassi Racing PR)(8-25-2005)

    • Gillette Young Guns - Weekly Update: By picking Matt Kenseth as the highest finishing Gillette Young Gun in the GFS Marketplace 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 21, Rita J. of Toledo, OH was the winner of the weekly Gillette Young Guns $5,000 Challenge. Rita picked Kenseth as the highest finishing Gillette Young Gun by going to and entering before the weekly deadline. As the highest finishing Gillette Young Gun, a $1,000 donation will be made to the National Prostate Cancer Coalition (NPCC) on behalf of Kenseth. This is the second time this year that a donation in Kenseth's name has been made to the NPCC.(Alan Taylor Communications)(8-25-2005)

    • Rusty running 'Blue Flames' at Bristol: Wallace's Miller Lite Dodge is carrying a special "Flames" color scheme this weekend at Bristol. "A few weeks back, they ran her back through the paint shop and put this kick-butt flame design color scheme on her, waxed her down really good and she's raring and ready to get after it once again this weekend," Wallace said of the special design for this weekend at BMS. "If looks have anything to do with it, she might even be a stronger car this time around than she was at Bristol back in the spring."(Tom Roberts PR/Penske Racing), see an image of the scheme on my #2 Team Schemes page.(8-25-2005)

    • Two Fans Injured in stands at Bristol: Two fans were hospitalized when debris flew into the Bristol Motor Speedway grandstands Wednesday night during a USAR Hooters Pro Cup race at the .533-mile oval. Track officials, citing the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), said they could not disclose information about the condition of the injured fans, but eyewitnesses said debris from a spinning car flew high into the grandstands, striking a man and a woman. The fans received extensive medical attention from emergency personnel arriving on the scene, according to the eyewitness accounts. Both were removed from the stands on stretchers and taken for treatment to Bristol Regional Medical Center.
      Mooresville’s Clay Rogers, driving a Ford, won the Food City 150, passing Jeff Agnew’s Chevrolet on the 137th lap. The race kicked off the week’s activities leading up to Saturday night’s Sharpie 500, a Nextel Cup event. Steven Wallace, an ARCA winner last week in Michigan and the son of Cup star Rusty Wallace, twice touched off multi-car crashes, the latter occurring on lap 147 and leading to a “green-white-checkered” finish that extended the race to 155 laps. Trying to pick up positions, he took his Dodge to the track’s apron in turn one, slamming into the Chevrolet driven by Randy Gentry. The 18-year-old Wallace also crashed on the 19th lap, though he managed to finish 16th. The night also began inauspiciously for the race winner. Rogers, who started second, took the lead at the start but was involved with a crash on lap five while racing for the lead with pole winner Shane Wallace.(Gaston Gazette). more at the Bristol Herald Courier.(8-25-2005)

    • Unveiling of Las Vegas's latest attraction - Earnhardt wax figure UPDATE: Las Vegas Motor Speedway general manager Chris Powell will be on hand Wednesday to help unveil the newest Las Vegas motorsports attraction. Powell will join Adrian Jones, general manager of Madame Tussauds Las Vegas, as they unveil a $200,000 life-size wax figure of seven-time NASCAR champion Dale Earnhardt. The Earnhardt figure will be the first piece of the new "Speed" exhibit opening at Madame Tussauds at the Venetian Resort Hotel Casino. "Dale Earnhardt was one of the great racers and champions in the history of motorsports," Powell said. "In 2004, Las Vegas Motor Speedway honored Dale by naming a fabulous grandstand, the Dale Earnhardt Terrace, in his memory. Similarly, the tribute to Dale by Madame Tussauds points up the importance of Dale's role in motorsports. And the coming 'Speed' attraction, featuring additional legendary drivers, also illustrates the strong link and enormous popularity of NASCAR racing in our great city. We at the speedway are honored to be a part of it." Tickets are on sale in both the Earnhardt and new Richard Petty Terrace for the March 10-12, 2006 NASCAR Weekend at LVMS. Race fans can order tickets by calling 1-800-644-4444 or logging on to

      LVMS General Manager Chris Powell [left] and Madame Tussauds GM Adrian Jones [right]

      UPDATE: Las Vegas Motor Speedway General Manager Chris Powell joined Adrian Jones, general manager of Madame Tussauds Las Vegas, in an unveiling of a first-of-its-kind wax likeness of seven-time NASCAR champion Dale Earnhardt Wednesday. A meticulously recreated $200,000 life-size wax figure of Earnhardt, dressed in an official driving uniform, complete with cap, jacket and sunglasses, was unveiled during ceremonies that opened the attraction to the public. The figure of Earnhardt is standing in a Victory Lane setting with arms raised in triumph just as he had done 76 times in his NASCAR career. Earnhardt is the first auto racing legend to have a wax figure in the SPEED attraction. Visitors to Madame Tussauds can stand next to the Earnhardt figure and be photographed with it while experiencing the sights and sounds of one of the most thrilling moments in NASCAR history. "Dale Earnhardt introduced the sport of auto racing to millions and his presence best represents the country's fastest-growing spectator sport," Jones said. "Madame Tussauds is dedicating this attraction to auto racing on a long-term basis and we will update this experience with additional $200,000 wax figures of famous auto racing legends on a regular basis. But, when we asked our customers and auto racing fans who should be first, a great majority said Earnhardt." Madame Tussauds Las Vegas is open seven days a week. For attraction hours and pricing, call 702-862-7800, or visit online at PR)(8-25-2005)

    • #34 gets a Bristol Sponsor: Moore Employer Solutions and Mach 1 Racing reached an agreement to sponsor PJ Jones in the #34 Chevy for NASCAR's Sharpie 500 Nextel Cup race at Bristol. Moore Employer Solutions is a strategic administration service provider. They offer their services to small to medium sized business to outsource the everyday functions of payroll and taxes, worker's comp administration and claims management, human resources, and other benefits to Professional Employer Organizations (PEOs) and insurance companies.(PR)(8-25-2005)

    • Dale Jr. in a Mag: You can find a fun article starring #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the September issue of ESQUIRE Magazine, now on a newsstand near you.(fingerprint inc)(8-25-2005)

      News from August 24, 2005

    • NASCAR Hall of Fame update: NASCAR visit the five Hall of Fame sites is over. Each site, Atlanta, Charlotte, Daytona, Kansas and Richmond got one day to show their proposals and local support. Yesterday, August 23rd, Richmond was the last city to get a visit. See some highlights, info and article links on the Richmond, Kansas, Charlott, Atlanta and Daytona visites on my Hall of Fame/Museum News and Links page, also see the unofficial NASCAR Hall of Fame voting site where fans can vote on the location and who the first 10 inductees should be. Also there are links to four of the proposed sites, Kansas doesn't have one that I have found or heard about yet.(8-24-2005)

    • Michigan TV ratings up 15%: Turner Network Television says Nielsen Media Research ratings for TNT's coverage of Sunday's GFS Marketplace 400 Nextel Cup race were up 15% over 2004. This year's race was viewed in 4.889 million households and earned a 5.5 cable rating and a 4.5 U.S. rating. The 2004 race was seen in 4.223 million households and earned 4.8 cable rating and a 3.9 U.S. rating.(NASCAR Scene)(8-24-2005)

    • DW one more Truck Race: Martinsville: It will be "One and Done" for Darrell Waltrip at Martinsville Speedway, October 22, when he takes the steering wheel of the #12 Darrell Waltrip Motorsports Toyota Tundra for his final appearance as a NASCAR driver in the Craftsman Truck Series race at the Virginia short-track. "I love racing at Martinsville -- always have," says Waltrip. "I've won there 11 times in the past, but knowing this is definitely the last time racing there does make me sad. I love the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series because it's a great place for these young drivers to get their feet wet, and it gives old guys like me the chance to go out and have some fun. But we're definitely "One and Done' this time at Martinsville." During his stellar racing career, Waltrip has made 16 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series starts since 1995, including six races at Martinsville Speedway. In 1996, Waltrip recorded the best career result of his Craftsman Truck Series career when he had a fifth-place finish at Martinsville. In that same race, Waltrip started on the outside of row one, his best starting spot in an NCTS race. Overall, the Owensboro, Ky.-native has eight top-10 finishes in his 16 NCTS starts -- which includes a pair of 2004 starts in the #11 Toyota Tundra at Martinsville and Indianapolis. After Darrell Waltrip competed in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series in 1995, his vision to become a truck owner came to fruition in 1996 and 1997 when Waltrip-owned truck teams participated in the series. In 1997, the #17 Darrell Waltrip Motorsports truck finished second in the points standings with three wins, four pole awards, 15 top-fives and 17 top-10s. Reopening an operation in Concord (N.C.), Darrell Waltrip Motorsports returned to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series arena in 2004 with driver David Reutimann and the #17 NTN Bearings Toyota Tundra team. At the beginning of the 2005 season, the #12 Toyota Tundra team was added to the organization's roster. This season Darrell Waltrip Motorsports celebrated their first victory at Nashville Superspeedway in the Toyota Tundra 200 as Reutimann became a first-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series winner in front of 6,000 Toyota employees.(DWM PR)(8-24-2005)

    • #49 Team/Driver docked points and fined: NASCAR announced today that three penalties have been issued to the #49 Dodge team in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series as a result of rules infractions last weekend at Michigan. The penalties were issued because of a roof height that was too low, a violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing), and Section 12-4-Q (car, parts, components and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series rule book. This infraction was discovered during post-race inspection. Ken Schrader, driver of the #49, was penalized with the loss of 25 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series driver championship points. Car owner Beth Ann Morgenthau was penalized with the loss of 25 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series owner championship points. Crew chief David Hyder was fined $25,000 and placed on probation until Dec. 31.(NASCAR)(8-24-2005)

    • Elliott back full-time in 2006? UPDATE: Team Owner Ray Evernham wants to expand [NOTE: not want "He WILL expand"] to a third full-time Nextel Cup team next season and is pressing Bill Elliott to take the job. Elliott, who turns 50 in October, has been running part-time for Evernham this season.(Winston Salem Journal)(8-22-2005)
      UPDATE: Bill Elliott, who is semiretired from Nextel Cup racing and making only a few runs this season for Ray Evernham, says he has not decided what to do next season. "I'm just taking it a day at a time," Elliott said. "If it looks like it's a pretty good deal, I might do it. If it's not, I'm not.(Winston Salem Journal)(8-24-2005)

    • Petty back in the Pink: This weekend, Kyle Petty and the #45 Quilted Northern Dodge team head to the .533-mile Bristol Motor Speedway for Saturday night's Sharpie 500. Georgia-Pacific brand Quilted Northern will wrap the #45 Dodge Charger pink for this weekend's race in support of the "Time for Thanks" program. The program supports the Susan G. Komen Foundation, the leading organization in the fight against breast cancer for more than 20 years. The team hopes to raise awareness to this program by collecting a strong finish Saturday night. Petty finished eighth at Bristol in April.(Williams Company)(8-24-2005)

    • #97 Sharpie MINI special paint scheme at Bristol: The NASCAR driver's skill is tested each year at Bristol Motor Speedway's half-mile track with 36-degree banked turns and bumper-to-bumper action. But this year, Sharpie MINI is shrinking the track even more when members from NASCAR's NEXTEL Cup teams and media are being asked to put the pedal to the metal, driving remote control cars en route to $5,000 in funds and $5,000 in school supplies for the winner's charity of choice on the afternoon of August 27. The mini race marks the official launch of the new Sharpie MINI marker, a 12-color marker series half the size of regular Sharpie markers and includes a clip cap that can be attached to just about anything. Kurt Busch, driver of the #97 Sharpie Ford and defending NEXTEL Cup champion, will wheel a miniaturized Sharpie MINI paint scheme during the charity race. The #97 Sharpie Mini paint scheme will hit the track for the fifth annual Sharpie 500 August 27. Sharpie MINI 500 drivers will also be asked for their autographs in support of Sharpie's Autographs for Education program. The nationwide program is seeking one million autographs in exchange for $1 million in school supplies and funds. Sharpie Mini markers are available at office supply stores and other retailers nationwide in twelve bold colors: black, red, blue, green, orange, berry, lime, aqua, purple, plum, navy and burgundy. Suggested retail prices for 2-, 8- and 12-packs are $5.93, $11.73 and $17.78, respectively. Sharpie Retractable Asks You To Put Your Autograph on part of one million signatures to raise $1 million in funds and supplies. Visit to make your mark!(Sharpie PR)
      see mages of the scheme on my #97 Team Schemes page.
      AND As the sun goes down and engines fire on Saturday at BMS, Sharpie is asking 165,000 fans for their autographs. Billed as the 'World's Largest Autograph Session," the signatures will support Sharpie's Autographs for Education program. The Sharpie 500 is playing host to NASCAR's elite under the lights at Bristol Motor Speedway (BMS) August 27 as 10 drivers inch closer to the "Race for the Chase" in the NEXTEL Cup Series. Before the gentlemen start their engines, Sharpie, the popular brand of permanent markers widely known as the autograph pen of choice, is asking more than 165,000 spectators in the BMS grandstands for their autographs in the name of the Sharpie Retractable "Autographs for Education" program. The world's largest autograph session supports Sharpie's effort to collect one million autographs in exchange for $1 million in school supplies and funds nationwide. Prior to the Sharpie 500, race-goers will receive a Sharpie "World's Largest Autograph Session" sticker when entering the track. Individuals will then be invited to autograph their sticker, with a Sharpie marker of course, for a chance to win a one-of-a-kind commemorative print signed by all 43 drivers before the start of the race. Those fans who are unable to attend the race may also participate at

    • ISC and Bruton to buy Action? In an unusual pairing, the France family's International Speedway Corp. and Bruton Smith's Speedway Motorsports are teaming to buy Action Performance, which sells racing souvenirs, for a reported $13 a share, according to sources close to the negotiations. Action Performance and the Jack Roush-owned Team Caliber are the top two souvenir companies in the NASCAR world, and Daytona executives have been interested in acquiring souvenir rights to all NASCAR stars in order to package them as part of a stock-car racing "mall" at each of the Nextel Cup tour's top tracks.(Winston Salem Journal)(8-24-2005)

    • Nemechek spends Tuesday with the Troops: #01-Joe Nemechek visited and thanked 75 U.S. Army soldiers at Texas Motor Speedway Tuesday for their brave service following their recent return from Iraq. The soldiers represent the 1st Calvary Division, 3rd Brigade based at Fort Hood in central Texas. The soldiers participated in the Team Texas High Performance Driving School and wheeled stock cars at speed around The Great American Speedway. Nemechek then gave six soldiers a ride they will always remember, touring the 1.5-mile superspeedway at race speed. "It is a neat day coming to meet you soldiers," Nemechek told the assembled group during a lunch speech. "Being here in Texas, having you come from Fort Hood, just getting back from overseas, it is a special day for all of us. "The Army is a different kind of sponsor," Nemechek continued. "To me, it is very important. You are not dealing with a company that makes a product, you are dealing with soldiers, men and women." Nemechek was accompanied by his mother, Martha Nemechek, who wore a Desert Storm uniform to honor the troops. Nemechek reflected on the day as he exited the speedway. "It was very, very neat. The soldiers will have a whole new outlook on what it takes to be a race car driver and what we do. It is always a special day when I get to share it with our soliders."(Texas Motor Speedway)(8-24-2005)

    • LeBron James Paint Scheme on #18 at Bristol - IMAGES: Coca-Cola will test LeBron James' crossover appeal when the company puts the Cleveland Cavaliers guard on Bobby Labonte's hood next Saturday night. A comic book character resembling the 20-year-old NBA marketing icon will be plastered on the hood of the No. 18 car for the Sharpie 500 at the Bristol Motor Speedway to promote POWERade's new James-inspired flavor, SourMelon. Coca-Cola officials say that recent data shows that 74% of all NBA fans are also NASCAR watchers. Coca-Cola will be flying in James to see his first live NASCAR race. "I really like the look of the race car," James said in a statement. "But I'm thinking we need to add some new rims." Coca-Cola will hand out commemorative comic books, with James and Labonte as characters, to fans at the track. The flavor, which is scheduled to hit shelves in 32-ounce bottles on Oct. 1, is the second in the line called FLAVA23. Sourberry, which matched the colors of his Cleveland Cavaliers jersey, hit supermarket and convenience store shelves last September. James helped chose the flavor, which is colored an emerald green, the color of his jersey at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School. Coca-Cola signed James two years ago to a six-year deal worth $2 million annually. Per the contract, James endorses both the POWERade and Sprite brands. Sources with knowledge of the contract told that James receives a bonus if POWERade's market share grows. La Kier would not confirm details of the contract. For every four Gatorade bottles sold in the United States, one POWERade bottle is sold, but the Coca-Cola sports drink brand is doing extremely well. La Kier said that total volume sold has increased 23 percent year-to-date. POWERade is an official sponsor of NASCAR, but in recent years has battled for placement with Gatorade, which owns victory lane at some tracks and has individual deals with drivers.(
      IMAGES: see some images of the scheme on my #18 Team Schemes page.(8-24-2005)

      News from August 23, 2005

    • Petty's to lose Dodge? UPDATE Denied: Petty Enterprises may have more to worry about than replacing Georgia-Pacific as sponsor of Kyle Petty's #45. Word is that Dodge may have played out its history hand in backing the Pettys, with results that have scarcely improved since Dodge's debut in 2001.(Speed Channel)
      UPDATE: sources with the team have vehemently denied that Dodge is leaving the team and the report is completely untrue.(8-23-2005)

    • Penske to Toyota? UPDATE: Penske Racing's deal with Dodge ends after 2006, with widespread speculation that Penske will side with Toyota in 2007. Penske's recent hiring of 2004 champion Kurt Busch (for 2007) is being cast as Toyota's way of strengthening its roster with a proven champion.(Speed Channel)(8-23-2005)
      UPDATE: Walter Czarnecki, vice chairman of Penske Racing and Penske Racing South, said Dodge's contract with the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup team extends past 2007.(Penske Racing South)(8-23-2005)

    • Jack Daniel's Birthday Celebration at Bristol, special scheme: It might be a couple days early, but the folks at the Jack Daniel Distillery are planning to celebrate the birthday of their founder, Mr. Jack, on August 27th with the 160,000-plus race fans at the Bristol Motor Speedway for the Sharpie 500. "We annually celebrate Mr. Jack's birthday in September across the world, but due to our affiliation with Richard Childress Racing and the millions of race fans across the country, we decided to kick off the celebration a little early with the fans at Bristol," said John Hayes, Jack Daniel's National Brand Manager. "We certainly couldn't pass up the chance to celebrate his birthday in the home state of the Distillery. We think Mr. Jack would be proud, and we're looking forward to one heck of a party." To mark the special occasion, the #07 Jack Daniel's Chevrolet Monte Carlo will feature a "Happy Birthday, Jack" special paint scheme during the Bristol race. The open-to-the-public Birthday celebration will kick off at 9 a.m. and continue until 5 p.m., giving plenty of time for race fans to get to their seats for the big race. The Jack Daniel's Experience - a 53-foot tractor trailer filled with artifacts, state-of-the art video monitors, sound system and graphics will be on hand to give race fans a "taste of Lynchburg and the Distillery." #07 driver Dave Blaney, Master Distiller Jimmy Bedford, Richard Childress and other Jack Daniel's personalities will be on hand through out the day to meet with race fans. Other highlights will include a racing simulator, the #07 Jack Daniel's show car, live musical entertainment, games, Bedford's Jack Daniel's 100th anniversary Heritage Soft Tail Harley-Davidson, and, of course, birthday cake in honor of the Distillery's founder- who would have turned 155 this September!
      Jasper Newton 'Jack' Daniel was the first to register his distillery with the federal government in 1866. Still today, the Distillery in Lynchburg (pop. 361), Tenn., is where every drop of Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey is produced, bottled and distributed to the more than 140 countries where Jack Daniel's is sold today. Jack Daniel's reminds its friends to Pace Yourself. Drink Responsibly.(RCR PR) see an image of the scheme on my #07 Team Schemes page.(8-23-2005)

    • Testing at Dover: The following drivers are testing, Tuesday, Aug. 23 at Dover International Speedway: Jeff Green, #43, Petty Enterprises NASCAR NEXTEL Cup team Erin Crocker, #6, Evernham Motorsports NASCAR Busch Series team. These are closed test sessions and are not open to the general public.(Dover Intl Speedway PR)(8-23-2005)

      News from August 22, 2005

    • Marlin to MB2 in 2006? UPDATE: hearing that Sterling Marlin could be part of the MB2 Motorsports stable of drivers in 2006, replacing Scott Riggs. MB2 is also grooming 20-year-old World of Outlaws driver Kraig Kinser. The 20-year-old driver is part of MB2's driver development program and will make his MB2 debut today in the ARCA race at Michigan International Speedway. He qualified second for the ARCA event. Kinser, son of racing legend Steve Kinser, won Sunday's Knoxville National in central Iowa, the most prestigious event in the World of Outlaws series.
      the #10 Valvoline team with driver Scott Riggs is losing Valvoline as the sponsor and will change car numbers, hearing either #35 or #02, rumored sponsors include: Allstate, Big Lots or/and State Farm. Riggs had a contract extension on the table, but MB2 recently pulled it. Riggs could end up in Evernham Motorsports #10 Valvoline Dodge.(8-19-2005)
      UPDATE: Sterling Marlin has talked to MB2 Motorsports about taking over what's now the #10 car for next season. MB2 Motorsports GM Jay Frye says Marlin is on his short list. Sponsorship and a car number have not been decided, but the team has petitioned NASCAR for 02 or 35. Current driver Scott Riggs, who finished a career-high second at Michigan, is expected to continue with Valvoline and the No. 10 at Evernham Motorsports.(Sporting News)(8-22-2005)

    • Dodge Petitions for New Nose: Dodge, which has only two victories with the new Charger, has petitioned for a new nose in 2006. Evernham Motorsports, Chip Ganassi Racing and Penske Racing collaborated on the new piece, which resembles the Ford front end but has the old Intrepid center. The nose will be ready this week. It must be submitted by September 1 to be approved for next season by NASCAR.(Sporting News)(8-22-2005)

    • #49 Roof Too Low: NASCAR officials announced after the race at Michigan that a post-race inspection revealed the roof on the #49 Schwans Home Service Dodge driven by Ken Schrader was too low. A penalty may be forthcoming this week.(Atlanta Journal-Constitution)(8-22-2005)

    • Air Pressure Checked: NASCAR told teams at the Michigan drivers' meeting that it would begin recording air pressures on the front tires of all cars before each race, keep the information confidential and use it to evaluate performance and to investigate tire problems.(Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)(8-22-2005)

    • Third DEI part-time in 2006? UPDATE: #15 Crew chief Tony Eury Jr. finally has something to talk about - a new contract with Dale Earnhardt Inc. He revealed that Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s contract is up at the end of 2007. And he said that DEI would field a third team next season "part-time."(Winston Salem Journal)(8-20-2005)
      UPDATE: DEI is adamant Michael Waltrip will not be in the #15 car next season. In fact, if NAPA does not return, another sponsor is waiting to support a research and development car that will offer seat time to Busch racers Paul Menard and Ryan Moore.(Sporting News)(8-22-2005)

    • 2006 Rules Meeting: NASCAR will meet with teams at NASCAR's research and development center in Concord, N.C., to review new rules and procedures for 2006. Template changes, the tire leasing program and the car of the future will be the lead topics.(Sporting News)(8-22-2005)

    • EA teams up with Gordon and Johnson as cover athletes for Nascar 06: Electronic Arts announced today that its EA SPORTS branded NASCAR videogame, NASCAR 06: Total Team Control, will feature NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series teammates Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson. The two avid "gamers" personify the focus of this year's game - Team Racing. NASCAR 06: Total Team Control for the PlayStation2 computer entertainment system and Xbox video game system from Microsoft will be on store shelves September 1st and is rated "E" for (Everyone) by the ESRB.(Wasserman Media Group PR)(8-22-2005)

    • Labbe Wins Wypall Wipers Crew Chief of the Race Award at MIS: The cost of gas may be at an all-time high, but for Jeremy Mayfield and the #19 team, fuel is priceless. After running outside the top-10 for the majority of the GFS Marketplace 400, crew chief Slugger Labbe called Mayfield into the pits on lap 148 to top off his fuel cell. The move sent Mayfield to the back of the pack, but when all of the leaders ducked into the pits on the ensuing green flag for a final gas and go, Mayfield inherited the lead and never looked back. The #19 Dodge Dealers Dodge assumed the top spot on lap 195 and held on to take the checkered flag. Labbe's fuel mileage gamble not only brought him a victory, but also won him the Wypall Wipers Crew Chief of the Race award.
      "History says this place from lap 150 on goes green," said Labbe. "We took a chance on history and we took a chance on what we did at the test. We ran 52 laps here at the test straight and then ran out of gas coming to 53. We knew we had the car to do it and the engine that could do it and the carburetor that could do it, and Jeremy is really good on saving fuel. We were cautiously nervous. We knew we could make it. It was going to be close of course. Jeremy thought he ran out a couple of times. We did a victory lap, did some burnouts and finally ran out of gas. It's a gamble. Maybe I should go to Vegas tomorrow."
      The panel of voters; including Tony Eury Sr., a Wypall Wipers representative and Maureen Fulton of the Toledo Blade; collectivelyvoted for Labbe as the crew chief who did the best job. Doug Richert leads the Wypall Wipers Crew Chief of the Year standings with five wins. Alan Gustafson, Bob Osborne, Greg Zipadelli and Robbie Loomis are tied for second place with two wins. Tommy Baldwin, Scott Miller, Fatback McSwain, Steve Hmiel, Jimmy Fennig, Greg Erwin, Slugger Labbe and Pete Rondeau are in a tie for third place, each with one win. At the end of the season, the crew chief with the most weekly wins will receive $20,000.Fans can also vote for their choice at 500)(8-22-2005)

    • Crocker testing Busch car, may move up faster? Erin Crocker will test a Busch car at Dover on Tuesday, in anticipation of running there in late September. She was set to run Friday's ARCA race here until crashing at Nashville. Crocker's specific 2006 plans will be announced soon, said car owner Ray Evernham, who has invested heavily in the 24-year-old redhead, with plans for a full Busch tour run next year in a Dodge. It may be "use her or lose her" game for Evernham, because General Motors is interested in her Nextel Cup potential.(Winston Salem Journal)(8-22-2005)

    • #6 Sponsor for 2006 to be announced: Geoff Smith, who runs Roush Racing for Jack Roush, said he is ready to announce a sponsor for the Mark Martin-Jamie McMurray car to replace Viagra.(Winston Salem Journal)(8-22-2005)

    • Kenseth staying at Roush? #17-Matt Kenseth, whose name has been in the news lately too about possibly moving on? "We have a great sponsor in DeWalt, that has been with him a long time, and I really have difficult seeing Matt turn his back on a sponsor that has built his career," Smith said. "I believe Matt is very happy being with us. The economic piece is there, and the competitive piece is there, so the expectation is there wouldn't be a switch."(Winston Salem Journal)(8-22-2005)

    • Waltrip and Toyota? UPDATE 4 to BDR? - Denied: Waltrip is headed eventually to the Toyota camp - along with Eury Jr. [note: as of 8/18 Eury signed to stay at DEI], according to one Detroit source very close to the situation - in what is reported to be a top-dollar project. "Toyota has offered Michael and Tony Jr. so much money they can't turn it down," the source said. Waltrip has been eyed for a Toyota ride for more than a year, in part because older brother Darrell runs a Toyota team on the Craftsman Truck Series. NASCAR has been pushing Toyota to step up its presence in the sport, for the added marketing punch that would provide. And Waltrip could give Toyota quick credibility. Toyota isn't expected to field a Cup team until 2007, although a Busch team is a possibility in 2006. Toyota does have a formidable presence in the truck series. The Toyota option? "I don't even know when that's a possibility, and I need a job for next year," Waltrip replied.(Winston Salem Journal)(7-16-2005)
      UPDATE: There have been whispers that [Michael] Waltrip is working with Toyota to become their flagship driver in 2007. Even though nothing firm has been announced in relation to Toyota, speculation is that they will have a car ready for the 2007 season. Don't be surprised if the team that Waltrip drives for in 2006 is in the final year of their manufacturers' contract.(Suffolk News Herald)(8-9-2005)
      UPDATE 2: ....could find Michael Waltrip racing under the banner of Bill Davis Racing in 2006, and he might be taking his current sponsor, NAPA, with him. Waltrip has informed his current team, Dale Earnhardt Inc., that he won't be returning to the #15 Chevy he has driven for the past five seasons. A move to Davis' team would mesh nicely with Waltrip's expected plans to join Toyota's team when that manufacturer moves to the Cup circuit in 2007 or 2008], because Davis already is running Toyotas in the Craftsman Truck Series.(Atlanta Journal-Constitution)(8-19-2005)
      UPDATE 3:.......also, it appears Michael Waltrip is headed to BDR. Waltrip attempted to bring Eury Jr. with him but he turned it down obviously. Bill Davis refused comment this morning.(ESPN's SportsCenter/Mike Massaro)(8-21-2005)
      UPDATE 4 - Denied: Mike Brown, general manager for Bill Davis, said his team has had "no talks at all" with Michael Waltrip about joining their operation next season.(Winston Salem Journal)(8-22-2005)

    • Parsons honors father: Detroit native Benny Parsons, a former racer who is an analyst on TNT [and NBC], worked Sunday's race [at Michigan] with a heavy heart. Parsons' father, Harold, died Tuesday. Parsons, who was unable to attend his induction into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America on Thursday in Detroit, flew in early Sunday to work for TNT. "I'm doing exactly what my father would have wanted me to do," Parsons said. "He always told me 'You've got a job to do, you do it to the best of your ability, if possible.' This track has added significance to me because my family moved 75 miles from here years ago for better paying jobs."(Detroit News)(8-22-2005)

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