The NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge
formerly THE WINSTON

UNOFFICIAL

Updated 5-21-2006
Rules below eligible drivers....


Rules for The NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge
Eligibility rules for NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge:
1st criteria: Drivers and car owners who have won races in the current and preceding year. If a driver leaves a team with which he has won a race, he remains eligible and the car owner's new driver also is eligible(through the last race before The All-Star Race)
2nd criteria: Drivers who are past Cup champions in the last 10 years
3rd criteria: Drivers who have won The All-Star Race in the past 10 years
4th criteria: The winning driver of the Nextel Open
5th criteria: Drivers who have won in previous years, not eligible by the above (not owners, just drivers)
(rules below table)

The Current UNOFFICIAL 2006 Field
 DriverEligibility
Race winners(drivers/owners) in 2005 and 2006
1 #24-Jeff Gordon 2005 Daytona 500
2 #16-Greg Biffle Feb 2005 California
3 #48-Jimmie Johnson March 2005 Las Vegas
4 #99-Carl Edwards Mar 2005 Atlanta
5 #29-Kevin Harvick April 2005 Bristol
6 #2-Kurt Busch April 2005 Phoenix
7 #9-Kasey Kahne May 2005 Richmond
8 #20-Tony Stewart June 2005 Infineon
9 #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. July 2005 Chicago
10 #19-Jeremy Mayfield Aug 2005 Michigan
11 #17-Matt Kenseth Aug 2005 Bristol
12 #5-Kyle Busch Sept 2005 Califonia
13 #12-Ryan Newman Sept 2005 Loudon
Event winner 2002
14 #88-Dale Jarrett Oct 2005 Talladega
15 #6-Mark Martin Oct 2005 Kansas
Event 1998/2005
Race winners (owners) in 2005 and 2006
16 #26-Jamie McMurray #97 Team April 2005 Phoenix

Previous NASCAR Cup champions
(not a 2005/2006 winner)
within the last 10 years
17 #43-Bobby Labonte 2000
18 #44-Terry Labonte
[is not running the event]
1996

Previous Winners of The NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge/The Winston
(not a 2005/2006 winner)
within the last 10 years
19 #55-Michael Waltrip won event 1996

and....
20 2006 All-Star Race Open Winner #10-Scott Riggs
21 Fan Vote Winner #45-Kyle Petty

Winning drivers from previous seasons not otherwise eligible
only is the above is NOT 20 or over
so these drivers are now out unless they win in 2006
22 #38-Elliott Sadler April 2004 Texas
23 #01-Joe Nemechek Oct 2004 Kansas

If 20 drivers are not eligible, winners from previous seasons still active on the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series become eligible for The All-Star Race. All active drivers during that season become eligible, even if the field exceeds 20 competitors.

Active former Cup race winners not eligible (year of last win):
Elliott Sadler (2004)
Joe Nemechek (2004)
Bill Elliott (2003. won event in 1986, Champ in 1988)
Robby Gordon (2003)
Sterling Marlin (2002)
Jeff Burton (2001)
Kyle Petty (1995)
Morgan Shepherd (1993)
Ken Schrader (1991)
Derrike Cope (1990)

RETIRED/NOT ACTIVE in CUP
Rusty Wallace (2004, won event in 1989, 1989 Champ)
Ricky Craven (2003)
Ward Burton (2002)
Johnny Benson (2002)
Steve Park (2001)
Bobby Hamilton (2001)
Jerry Nadeau (2000)
John Andretti (1999)
Geoffrey Bodine (1996, won event in 1994)
Jimmy Spencer (1994)
Brett Bodine (1990)
Greg Sacks, (1985)


Eligible drivers for the 2006 All-Star Race Open

What makes a driver eligible for the Nextel Open?
To qualify for the Nextel Open, drivers must be in the Top 50 of the final previous seasons NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series [drivers] point standings
or in the Top 50 of the current NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series [drivers] point standings as of March 13, 2006.
Just because a driver is listed, doesn't mean they will race.

  1. ) Stanton Barrett [#95]
  2. ) Dave Blaney [#22]
  3. ) Mike Bliss [no Cup ride - not entered]
  4. ) Clint Bowyer [#07]
  5. ) Jeff Burton [#31]
  6. ) Chad Chaffin [#61]
  7. ) Bill Elliott [#00 - not entered]
  8. ) Mike Garvey [#51]
  9. ) Robby Gordon [#7]
  10. ) Jeff Green [#66]
  11. ) Bobby Hamilton Jr. [no Cup ride - not entered]
  12. ) Denny Hamlin [#11]
  13. ) Travis Kvapil [#32]
  14. ) Jason Leffler [no Cup ride - not entered]
  15. ) Kevin Lepage [#49]
  16. ) Sterling Marlin [#14]
  17. ) Casey Mears [#42]
  18. ) Joe Nemechek [#01]
  19. ) Kyle Petty [#45]
  20. ) Tony Raines [#96]
  21. ) Scott Riggs [#10]
  22. ) Boris Said [#60 but will run the #34 car - withdrew]
  23. ) Elliott Sadler [#38]
  24. ) Hermie Sadler [#00]
  25. ) Johnny Sauter [#70 tested at LMS in May - not entered]
  26. ) Ken Schrader [#21]
  27. ) Kirk Shelmerdine [#27]
  28. ) Brent Sherman [no Cup ride - not entered]
  29. ) Mike Skinner [no Cup ride - but will run the #37 car, withdrew]
  30. ) Reed Sorenson [#41]
  31. ) Jimmy Spencer [no Cup ride - - not entered]
  32. ) David Stremme [#40]
  33. ) Martin Truex Jr. [#1]
  34. ) Brian Vickers [#25]
  35. ) Kenny Wallace [#78]
  36. ) Mike Wallace [#09, will run #30 car for Rick Ware]
  37. ) Scott Wimmer [#4]
  38. ) J.J. Yeley [#18]


    RACE STUFF

  • Johnson wins the Nextel All-Star Challenge: #48-Jimmie Johnson won the Nextel All-Star Challenge at Lowe's Motor Speedway after getting caught speeding entering pit road early and just missing the invert [they inverted 10 cars after the the 1st segment, he was 11th] to win his 2nd career All-Star race and 7th overall Cup race at LMS [five pts races and two all-star races]. #29-Harvick was 2nd, followed by #24-Jeff Gordon, There were two red flags, one for a rain delay, then one to clear up a seven car wreck on lap 50. Johnson won $1,055,077. There were 8 lead changes among 6 leaders.(5-21-2006)

  • The Nextel All-Star Challenge at Lowe's Motor Speedway:
    The UNOFFICIAL Top Ten (start pos in parens), lap leaders, cars out, cautions and some notes
    after 90 of 90 laps:

    car#, driver, starting spot, laps led
    #48-Jimmie Johnson-c (2)(33 laps led), $1,055,007
    #29-Kevin Harvick-c (9)(23 laps led), $315,007
    #24-Jeff Gordon-c (4), $140,007
    #99-Carl Edwards-f (13), $120,007
    #12-Ryan Newman-d (5), $105,007

    #43-Bobby Labonte-d (11), $100,007
    #88-Dale Jarrett-f (12), $94,857
    #45-Kyle Petty-d (20/Fan Vote Winner), $123,967
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr.-c (17), $92,857
    #10-Scott Riggs-d (19/won Nextel Open) -1 lap, $145,391

    #17-Matt Kenseth-f (7) - OUT, $90,833
    #20-Tony Stewart-c (8)(2 laps led) - OUT, $109.833
    #16-Greg Biffle-f (6) - OUT, $98,833
    #9-Kasey Kahne-d (1)(9 laps led) - OUT, $138,333
    #6-Mark Martin-f (16)(1 laps led) - OUT, $87,733

    #5-Kyle Busch-c (10)(21 laps led)(seg 1 winner) - OUT, $162.483
    #19-Jeremy Mayfield-d (18) - OUT, $87,383
    #26-Jamie McMurray-f (15) - OUT, $87,283
    #55-Michael Waltrip-d (14) - OUT, $87,183
    #2-Kurt Busch-d (3) - OUT, $92,083

    c=chevy; d=dodge; f=ford; r=rookie

    Pit Selections Chart page at FoxSports.com

  • Cars on the lead lap: 9 (of 20 starters)

  • Off track/out of race (10):
    #2-Busch (engine-out)
    #55-Waltrip (accident-out)
    #9-Kahne (accident-out)
    #5-Busch (accident-out)
    #26-McMurray (accident-out)
    #19-Mayfield (accident-out)
    #6-Martin (accident-out)
    #16-Biffle (accident-out)
    #17Kenseth (accident-out)
    #20-Stewart (accident-out)

  • Laps Leaders Unofficial (6 with 8 lead changes):
    #48-Johnson (32);
    #29-Harvick (23);
    #5-Busch (21);
    #9-Kahne (pole, 10);
    #20-Stewart (2):
    #6-Martin (1);

  • Lap leaders: #9-Kahne pole; #9-Kahne 1-2; #48-Johnson 3-16; #9-Kahne 17; #20-Stewart 18-19; #5-Busch 20-40; #12-Newman (takes over for segment 2 - 10 inverted); #6-Martin 41; #9-Kahne 42-49; #29-Harvick 50-71; #48-Johnson 72-90;

    Cautions: 7 for 17 laps

    Caution 7 - Lap 72; #20-Stewart washed up the track in turn 1 and drove into #17-Kenseth, with both smacking the wall.
    Caution 6 - Lap 70; Mandatory caution, do not have to pit but all did..for at least fuel
    RED FLAG for a mulitcar wreck on lap 50 as of 11:47pm/et, back to yellow as of 11:52pm/et.
    Caution 5 - Laps 50 - 52: a huge wreck on the restart after the 3rd caution when #9-Kahne got loose, came up the track and collected #6-Martin, collecting #5-Busch, #19-Mayfield, #20-Stewart, #26-McMurray, #16-Biffle and #17-Kenseth.
    Caution 4 - Laps 44 - 48: #55-Waltrip got loose and slammed the turn 4 wall and skidded across the grass and stopped, a lot of damage to the car.
    Caution 3 - Lap 40; Mandatory caution
    RED FLAG for rain as 10:50pm/et - teams CAN work on their cars, unlike points races, yellow flag as of 11:08pm/et.
    Caution 2 - Laps 34 - 37: #2-Busch lost an engine
    Caution 1 - Laps 13 - 16: #6-Martin gets into #26-McMurray who slides up into the turn 4 wall and spins, slight damage to the right front.

  • RACE/PIT NOTES: (as noted heard on TV or Radio)
    ---- during the 3rd caution only 1 lead lap car came in to pit, #8-Earnhardt Jr. who is complaining the car is very tight, also #10-Riggs came into pit, he is still a lap down.
    ---- during the 2nd caution, #'s 55,48,8,19 made pitstops, the #19 team went under the hood.
    ---- #48-Johnson got penalized for speeding entering pit road on his green flag stop and had to so a pass thru penalty.
    ---- just after the green flag for the 1st caution, some cars tried to get to pit road, #10-Riggs spun in the grass after #6-Martin nailed him in the back, recovered, #8-Earnhardt Jr. also went thru the grass but saved it. Riggs then limped around with a flat tire.
    ---- within 3 laps green laps after the 1st caution, the driver have to make their mandatory 4 tire pit stop.
    ---- FX showed steam.water coming out of the overflow tube on the #55 car during the 1st caution
    ---- #'s 8,45,55,88,99 came in to pit during the 1st caution, along with the damaged #26.
    ---- on the first lap #16-Biffle got sideways and somehow saved it.
    ---- green flag waved at 10:23pm/et
    ---- command to start engines at 10:14pm/et by the Red Hot Chili Peppers with a different command
    ---- To the BACK: [0]: none reported

    SEGMENT RESULTS

    SEGMENT 3 Starting Lineup - after Lap 70 of 90:
    (after pit stops - all 11 lead lap cars pitted)
    #29-Kevin Harvick-c (9)(22 laps led)
    #48-Jimmie Johnson-c (2)(14 laps led)
    #17-Matt Kenseth-f (7)
    #99-Carl Edwards-f (13)
    #20-Tony Stewart-c (8)(2 laps led)
    #24-Jeff Gordon-c (4)
    #12-Ryan Newman-d (5)
    #43-Bobby Labonte-d (11)
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr.-c (17)
    #88-Dale Jarrett-f (12)

    #45-Kyle Petty-d (20/Fan Vote Winner)
    #10-Scott Riggs-d (19/won Nextel Open) -1 lap
    #16-Greg Biffle-f (6) - OUT
    #9-Kasey Kahne-d (1)(9 laps led) - OUT
    #6-Mark Martin-f (16)(1 laps led) - OUT
    #5-Kyle Busch-c (10)(21 laps led)(seg 1 winner) - OUT
    #19-Jeremy Mayfield-d (18) - OUT
    #26-Jamie McMurray-f (15) - OUT
    #55-Michael Waltrip-d (14) - OUT
    #2-Kurt Busch-d (3) - OUT

    SEGMENT 2 FINISH - after Lap 70 of 90:
    #29-Kevin Harvick-c (9)(22 laps led) $75,000
    #48-Jimmie Johnson-c (2)(14 laps led) $20,000
    #99-Carl Edwards-f (13) $10,000
    #20-Tony Stewart-c (8)(2 laps led)
    #17-Matt Kenseth-f (7)
    #24-Jeff Gordon-c (4)
    #12-Ryan Newman-d (5)
    #43-Bobby Labonte-d (11)
    #88-Dale Jarrett-f (12)
    #45-Kyle Petty-d (20/Fan Vote Winner)

    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr.-c (17)
    #10-Scott Riggs-d (19/won Nextel Open) -1 lap
    #16-Greg Biffle-f (6) - OUT
    #9-Kasey Kahne-d (1)(9 laps led) - OUT
    #6-Mark Martin-f (16)(1 laps led) - OUT
    #5-Kyle Busch-c (10)(21 laps led)(seg 1 winner) - OUT
    #19-Jeremy Mayfield-d (18) - OUT
    #26-Jamie McMurray-f (15) - OUT
    #55-Michael Waltrip-d (14) - OUT
    #2-Kurt Busch-d (3) - OUT

    SEGMENT 2 Starting Lineup - after Lap 40 of 90:
    (after inverting 10 cars)
    #12-Ryan Newman-d (5)
    #6-Mark Martin-f (16)
    #9-Kasey Kahne-d (1)(3 laps led)
    #99-Carl Edwards-f (13)
    #17-Matt Kenseth-f (7)
    #29-Kevin Harvick-c (9)
    #24-Jeff Gordon-c (4)
    #16-Greg Biffle-f (6)
    #20-Tony Stewart-c (8)(2 laps led)
    #5-Kyle Busch-c (10)(21 laps led)(segment 1 winner)

    #48-Jimmie Johnson-c (2)(14 laps led)
    #88-Dale Jarrett-f (12)
    #19-Jeremy Mayfield-d (18)
    #43-Bobby Labonte-d (11)
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr.-c (17)
    #55-Michael Waltrip-d (14)
    #45-Kyle Petty-d (20/Fan Vote Winner)
    #26-Jamie McMurray-f (15)
    #10-Scott Riggs-d (19/won Nextel Open) -1 lap
    #2-Kurt Busch-d (3) - OUT

    SEGMENT 1 FINISH - after Lap 40 of 90:
    #5-Kyle Busch-c (10)(21 laps led) $75,000
    #20-Tony Stewart-c (8)(2 laps led) $20,000
    #16-Greg Biffle-f (6) $10,000
    #24-Jeff Gordon-c (4)
    #29-Kevin Harvick-c (9)
    <#17-Matt Kenseth-f (7)
    #99-Carl Edwards-f (13)
    #9-Kasey Kahne-d (1)(3 laps led)
    #6-Mark Martin-f (16)
    #12-Ryan Newman-d (5)

    #48-Jimmie Johnson-c (2)(14 laps led)
    #88-Dale Jarrett-f (12)
    #19-Jeremy Mayfield-d (18)
    #43-Bobby Labonte-d (11)
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr.-c (17)
    #55-Michael Waltrip-d (14)
    #45-Kyle Petty-d (20/Fan Vote Winner)
    #26-Jamie McMurray-f (15)
    #10-Scott Riggs-d (19/won Nextel Open) -1 lap
    #2-Kurt Busch-d (3) - OUT

    All-Star Challenge Starting Lineup:
    #9-Kasey Kahne-d (1)
    #48-Jimmie Johnson-c (2)
    #2-Kurt Busch-d (3)
    #24-Jeff Gordon-c (4)
    #12-Ryan Newman-d (5)
    #16-Greg Biffle-f (6)
    #17-Matt Kenseth-f (7)
    #20-Tony Stewart-c (8)
    #29-Kevin Harvick-c (9)
    #5-Kyle Busch-c (10)

    #43-Bobby Labonte-d (11)
    #88-Dale Jarrett-f (12)
    #99-Carl Edwards-f (13)
    #55-Michael Waltrip-d (14)
    #26-Jamie McMurray-f (15)
    #6-Mark Martin-f (16)
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr.-c (17)
    #19-Jeremy Mayfield-d (18)
    #10-Scott Riggs-d (19/won Nextel Open)
    #45-Kyle Petty-d (20/Fan Vote Winner)

    c=chevy; d=dodge; f=ford; r=rookie

  • Petty wins VOTE more: Kyle Petty and the #45 MyCokeRewards Dodge finished 22nd in the Nextel Open. At the conclusion of the race Petty was announced as the winner of the Nextel Fan Vote. Petty was then awarded the opportunity to race in the Nextel All-Star Challenge. Comments from Petty after he learned of the fan vote: "I think this is big, but I think it's big for the Victory Junction Gang Camp. We just appreciate all the fans that voted. I really hope they know how much they have helped touch the lives of the children that will be affected by this. Coca-Cola and our other partners, Wells Fargo, Schwan's and Tire Kingdom have really supported this program. I think this really shows how much people really care about the camp and the kids. I really believe the fans were voting for the camp and not for Kyle Petty. That really means a lot. We just really, really, appreciate all the fans that voted."(Moore Consulting Group)
    NOTE: have not seen any voting totals as of yet.(5-20-2006)
    UPDATE: As the result of the successful “Vote Kyle, Reward Victory Junction” campaign, Kyle Petty captured the 2006 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge fan vote and drove the MyCokeRewards #45 Dodge car to an eighth place finish in the NEXTEL All-Star Challenge at Lowe's Motor Speedway today. Through tremendous support from family, friends, sponsors, NASCAR fans and members of the NASCAR community, Petty earned the wildcard spot in the NEXTEL All-Star Challenge. As a result, Coca-Cola, Schwan's, Wells Fargo and Tire Kingdom are donating $275,000 to the Victory Junction Gang Camp -- a camp for chronically and critically-ill children. Kyle and Petty Enterprises also donated the purse money won in the NEXTEL All-Star Challenge from Petty's eighth place finish, bringing the total donation to Victory Junction to $398.967. “This campaign was all about the kids,” said Petty. “Coca-Cola, Wells Fargo, Schwan's and Tire Kingdom developed a great program to honor me and reward Victory Junction at the same time. The money being donated will go towards sending more kids to the camp and continuing our overall mission of serving chronically and critically-ill children.” In addition to driving the #45 Dodge's special MyCokeRewards primary sponsorship paint scheme in the NEXTEL All-Star Challenge, Petty will carry the scheme in the Coca-Cola 600 on May 28. Petty had a strong run in the All-Star Challenge. Petty started 20 th , but the team only had one way to go. Petty's MyCokeRewards Dodge was handling well and the car was to the liking of Petty. Petty moved up as he stayed patient and cars crashed. Petty's Dodge was also faster on longer runs. He made passed on Dale Earnhardt Jr. and moved in on Dale Jarrett in the final 20 lap segment. Petty finished a strong 8th.(Moore Consulting Group/Petty Racing PR)
    RESULTS: the top vote getters from nascar.com:
    1. #45-Kyle Petty 101,966
    2. #1-Martin Truex Jr. 50,018
    3. #38-Elliott Sadler 38,797
    4. #11-Denny Hamlin 18,863
    5. #31-Jeff Burton 18,376
    6. #7-Robby Gordon 15,401
    7. #49-Ken Schrader 10,021
    8. #25-Brian Vickers 18,616
    9. #07-Clint Bowyer 7,374
    10. #42-Casey Mears 7,310
    (NASCAR.com)(5-22-2006)

  • Riggs wins Nextel Open: #10-Scott Riggs, the pole sitter, won the Nextel Open, leading all but the 1st lap and dominating the race to advance to the Nextel Challenge All-Star race and will start that race 19th. #45-Kyle Petty won the Nextel/NASCAR.com fan vote and will start the Challenge 20th, he finished the Nextel Open 22nd. Finishing 2nd in the Open was #66-Jeff Green, #25-Brian Vickers, #11-Denny Hamlin and #18-J.J. Yeley. #42-Casey Mears and #4-Scott Wimmer were the only cars that wrecked in the race.(5-20-2006)

  • The Nextel Open at Lowe's Motor Speedway:
    The UNOFFICIAL Top Ten (start pos in parens), lap leaders, cars out, cautions and some notes
    after 30 of 30 laps:

    car#, driver, starting spot, laps led
    #10-Scott Riggs-d (1)(29 laps led)
    #66-Jeff Green-c (3)
    #25-Brian Vickers-c (7)
    #11-Danny Hamiln-c (2-r)(1 laps led)
    #18-J.J. Yeley-c (4-r)

    #40-David Stremme-d (9-r)
    #31-Jeff Burton-c (5)
    #14-Sterling Marlin-c (11)
    #7-Robby Gordon-c (14)
    #21-Ken Schrader-f (6)

    #01-Joe Nemechek-c (17)
    #38-Elliott Sadler-f (29/back)
    #41-Reed Sorenson-d (16-r)
    #07-Clint Bowyer-c (19-r)
    #22-Dave Blaney-d (23)

    #32-Travis Kvapil-c (18)
    #49-Kevin Lepage-d (21)
    #78-Kenny Wallace-c (15)
    #96-Tony Raines -c(12)
    #1-Martin Truex Jr.-c (13-r)

    #51-Mike Garvey-c (28)
    #45-Kyle Petty-d (20/back)
    #61-Chad Chaffin-c (25)
    #95-Stanton Barrett-c (22)
    #30-Mike Wallace-d (26)

    #00-Hermie Sadler-f (24)
    #27-Kirk Shelmerdine-c (27) - OUT
    #4-Scott Wimmer-c (8) - OUT
    #42-Casey Mears-d (10) - OUT

    c=chevy; d=dodge; f=ford; r=rookie

    Pit Selections Chart page at FoxSports.com

  • Cars on the lead lap: 26 (of 29 starters)

  • Off track/out of race (3):
    #42-Mear (accident-out)
    #4-Wimmer (accident-out)
    #27-Shelmerdine (?-out)

  • Laps Leaders Unofficial (2 with 2 lead changes):
    #10-Riggs (pole)
    #11-Hamlin

  • Lap leaders: #10-Riggs pole; #11-Hamlin 1; #10-Riggs 2-30;

    Cautions: 2 for 6 laps

    Caution 3 - Laps 19 - 20: #4-Wimmer lost a tire and smacked the turn 1, the 1st segment ended.
    Caution 2 - Laps 14 - 16: #78-Wallace got tapped by #07-Boywer and went thru the front stretch grass.
    Caution 1 - Laps 4 - 7: #42-Mears smacked the turn 4 wall, and went backwards thru the front stretch grass.

  • RACE/PIT NOTES: (as noted heard on TV or Radio)
    ---- during the 2nd caution, #78-Wallace made a pit stop after his spin and some other cars made pit stops.
    ---- on the 1st caution 8 cars made pit stops for fuel only, including #7-Gordon.
    ---- on the start, noticed, #21-Schrader is smoking, possible tire smoke.
    ---- before the green flag, #38-Sadler had to pit for the fuel filler leaking gas, needed to close the flap.
    ---- green flag at 8:55pm/et
    ---- cars rolled onto the track at 8:49pm/et
    ---- command to start engines at 8:46pm/et by Nextel's Tim Kelly
    ---- To the BACK: [4]: #38-Sadler [backup car]; #45-Petty [backup car]; #51-Garvey [unapproved adjustments]; #49-Lepage [unapproved adjustments]

  • The Nextel Open at Lowe's Motor Speedway:
    SEGMENT 1 of 2 - The Way it Finished after 20 laps
    after 20 of 30 laps:

    car#, driver, starting spot, laps led
    #10-Scott Riggs-d (1)(19 laps led)
    #11-Danny Hamiln-c (2-r)(1 laps led)
    #66-Jeff Green-c (3)
    #18-J.J. Yeley-c (4-r)
    #25-Brian Vickers-c (7)
    #31-Jeff Burton-c (5)
    #40-David Stremme-d (9-r)
    #21-Ken Schrader-f (6)
    #41-Reed Sorenson-d (16-r)
    #7-Robby Gordon-c (14)

    #14-Sterling Marlin-c (11)
    #01-Joe Nemechek-c (17)
    #38-Elliott Sadler-f (29/back)
    #32-Travis Kvapil-c (18)
    #07-Clint Bowyer-c (19-r)
    #22-Dave Blaney-d (23)
    #1-Martin Truex Jr.-c (13-r)
    #49-Kevin Lepage-d (21)
    #51-Mike Garvey-c (28)
    #96-Tony Raines -c(12)

    #78-Kenny Wallace-c (15)
    #45-Kyle Petty-d (20/back)
    #61-Chad Chaffin-c (25)
    #95-Stanton Barrett-c (22)
    #30-Mike Wallace-d (26)
    #00-Hermie Sadler-f (24)
    #27-Kirk Shelmerdine-c (27)
    #4-Scott Wimmer-c (8) - OUT
    #42-Casey Mears-d (10) - OUT

  • 2006 Nextel Challenge Qualifying Order, Results, Starting Lineup

  • All-Star Practice Page

  • 2006 Nextel Entry List page

  • Kahne wins pole for Nextel Challenge: #9-Kasey Kahne went out 16th of 18 drivers and won the pole with a time of 122.296 seconds on the 3 laps run with a 4 tire pit stop, starting 2nd is #48-Jimmie Johnson then #2-Kurt Busch, #24-Jeff Gordon and #12-Ryan Newman. Two drivers were penalized for speeding entering pit road [20 second penalty]. #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [will start 17th] and #19-Jeremy Mayfield [will start 18th] and last years winner, #6-Mark Martin will start 16th after a lug nut missing penalty [5 seconds] Qualifying results and strating lineup on the 2006 Nextel Challenge Qualifying Order, Results, Starting Lineup page.(5-19-2006)

  • Riggs wins pole for Nextel Open: #10-Scott Riggs won the pole for the Nextel Open with a speed of 186.509mph, followed by #11-Denny Hamlin, #66-Jeff Green, #18-J.J. Yeley and #31-Jeff Burton. Had quite a few incidents during the qualifying with #27-Shelmerdine, #51-Garvey, #38-Sadler and #45-Petty all spun with all but the #27 getting damage, #45-Petty will go to a backup car and #38-Sadler may have to. #01-Nemechek spun on his first lap and stopped, turned around and drove back to pit road and started his 2nd lap over. #37-Skinner withdrew. Qualifying results and strating lineup on the 2006 Nextel Challenge Qualifying Order, Results, Starting Lineup page.(5-19-2006)

  • Ramblings - Nextel Challenge:
    First, Scott Riggs took the pole for the NEXTEL Open with a time of 28.953 seconds (186.509 mph) over Denny Hamlin. He'll lead 'em to the green for the 30 lapper tomorrow night....and you better hurry cause it'll be over before you know it! Tough night for a bunch of drivers. Elliott Sadler (who's not used to starting his night this early) didn't make it past turn two of his first lap, and Kyle Petty shortened his car up a few feet in the rear on his second lap (also in turn two). Sadler'll start shotgun tomorrow night while Kyle's first lap time was good enough for 20th position. Mike Skinner and the #37 car withdrew so we'll start 29 in the Open. The winner will advance to the Challenge as well as one driver voted in by the fans.
    Things stayed the same for Ray Everham later, tho....as Kasey Kahne took the pole for the biggie, the NEXTEL Challenge, over Jimmie Johnson. We used the same format we've used the last couple years (with a pit stop in amongst three laps) so the crew can share the glory this week! Our defending "Challenge" winner, Mark Martin, will start 16th. Hard tires.....new paving.....and a cool $1M to the winner.(Stock Car Fans)(5-20-2006)

  • Nextel Challenge at Lowe's Motor Speedway practice is over, the results:
    #9-Kahne 182.859
    #19-Mayfield 181.702
    #16-Biffle 181.543
    #29-Harvick 181.500
    #17-Kenseth 180.524
    slowest: #55-Waltrip 175.080 and #26-McMurray 176.945
    incident: #88-Jarrett spun thru the front stretch grass late in the session, but didn't hit anything.
    See the speeds, laps ran and more on my All-Star Practice Speeds Page.(5-19-2006)

  • Nextel Open at Lowe's Motor Speedway practice is over, the fastest:
    #66-Green 184.118
    #11-Hamlin 184.068
    #18-Yeley 183.337
    #38-Sadler 183.237
    #32-Kvapil 182.661
    slowest: #27-Shelmerdine 159.076 and #95-Barrett 173.846
    no speed listed for: #37-Skinner
    NOTES: #34-Boris Said withdrew and will not race; 30 miniues into the practice, #61-Chaffin broke loose in turn 2 and backed into the wall and will need to go to a backup car.(5-19-2006)

  • Entry List for the Nextel Open at Lowe's Motor Speedway is posted, 31 drivers are scheduled to qualify and run the race, including Mike Wallace in the #30 Dodge or Rick Ware; Boris Said in the #34 Chevy of Front Row Motorsports and Mike Skinner in the #37 Dodge or RJ Racing, see the full entry list on my Nextel Open Entry List page.(5-16-2006)
    UPDATE: #34-Boris Said withdrew, so will have 30 cars running the Nextel Open.(5-19-2006)


    THE SCHEDULE

    FRIDAY, May 19
    6:30 a.m. NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Haulers Enter
    10:45 a.m. NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Crew Chief Meeting (Sunoco Building)
    11:00 a.m. NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rookie/Spotter Meeting (Drawing for Qualifying Order)
    12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Final NEXTEL Open Practice
    1:30 p.m. - 1:45 p.m. FOX Exhibition Run
    1:45 p.m. - 1:50 p.m. NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Pit Road Practice
    1:50 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. Final NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Practice
    4:15 p.m. NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Qualifying (2 laps, all positions)
    6:05 p.m. Qualifying NEXTEL Open (2 laps, all positions)
    7:10 p.m. Qualifying NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge (3 laps with 4-tire change pit stop)
    8:45 p.m. Quaker Steak & Lube 200 Craftsman Truck Series Race (134 laps/201 miles)

    SATURDAY, May 20
    2:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. NEEDTOBREATHE Performs (Turn 1 and 2 Miller Stage)
    3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Train Performs (Turn 1 and 2 Miller Stage)
    5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Short Track Racing 1/4 Mile
    5:30 p.m. NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Drivers/Crew Chief Meeting (Time Warner Media Center)
    7:30 p.m. NASCAR NEXTEL Open (20 laps/10 laps)
    9:00 p.m. (Approx.) NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge (40 laps/30 laps/20 laps)
    Segment #1: 40 laps
    "Red Hot Pit Stop" by Red Hot Chili Peppers
    Segment #2: 30 laps
    Yellow Flag Pit Stop
    Segment #3: 20 laps - $1,000,000-to-win


    TV SCHEDULE

    FRIDAY, May 19
    12:00 pm NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Final Practice SPEED
    4:00 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Qualifying SPEED
    6:00 pm NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Qualifying SPEED
    8:30 pm NCTS: QUAKER STEAK AND LUBE 200 SPEED

    SATURDAY, May 20
    12:00am NASCAR Nextel Cup Qualifying SPEED
    7:00 pm All- Star Pre-Race Show FX
    7:30 NEXTEL Open / NASCAR NEXTEL ALL-STAR Challenge FX


    FAST FACTS/WEATHER/LINKS/ODDS

  • NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Fast Facts
    Location: Lowe's Motor Speedway, Concord, N.C.
    Date: Saturday, May 20, 2006
    Time: 9:00pm/et
    Sanctioning Body: NASCAR, Daytona Beach, Fla.
    Series: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series - Special Non-Points Event
    Companion Race: NEXTEL Open - NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series

    Distance: 90 laps, 135 miles (run in three segments of 40 laps, 30 laps and 20 laps). Green flag and yellow flag laps will be counted during segment 1. All restarts will be double file and lapped cars will start at the rear.

    Between segment 1 and segment 2, there will be a 10-minute break during which a random drawing will determine if as few as six or as many as 12 cars will be inverted. Teams will pit and may elect to change tires, add fuel and make normal chassis adjustments. Changing of springs, shock absorbers or rear-ends will not be permitted. Only green flag laps will be counted during segment 2 and segment 3.

    Between segment 2 and segment 3 there will be a yellow flag during which teams may elect to pit. They may add fuel, change tires and make normal chassis adjustments. Teams pitting will not retain their position and will restart at the rear of the field in the order they leave pit road.

    Purse: $3,250,450 (event record)

    NEXTEL All-Star Challenge winner's purse: $1,005,000

    Segment Winner Bonuses: 1st, $75,000; 2nd, $20,000; 3rd, $10,000

    2005 Winner: Mark Martin, Pfizer/Viagra Ford

    Qualifying: One round of qualifying will be held Friday, May 19, at 7:10pm/et. Each driver will run three laps with a mandatory four-tire, pit stop. The total elapsed time will comprise each team's qualifying effort and the pole-winning team will earn $50,000.
    2005 Pole Sitter: Ryan Newman, Alltel Dodge, 122.443 seconds, 132.306 mph
    Total elapsed time of three laps, including a four-tire pit stop

    Eligibility List:
    Jeff Gordon, 2005 Daytona 500, Daytona Beach, Fla.
    Greg Biffle, 2005 Auto Club 500, Fontana, Calif.
    Jimmie Johnson, 2005 UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400, Las Vegas, Nev.
    Carl Edwards, 2005 Golden Corral 500, Hampton, Ga.
    Kevin Harvick, 2005 Food City 500, Bristol, Tenn.
    Kurt Busch, 2005 Subway Fresh 500, Phoenix, Ariz.
    Kasey Kahne, 2005 Chevy American Revolution 400, Richmond, Va.
    Tony Stewart, 2005 Dodge/Save Mart 350, Sonoma, Calif.
    Dale Earnhardt Jr., 2005 USG Sheetrock 400, Joliet, Ill.
    Jeremy Mayfield, 2005 GFS Marketplace 400, Brooklyn, Mich.
    Matt Kenseth, 2005 Sharpie 500, Bristol, Tenn.
    Kyle Busch, 2005 Sony HD 500, Fontana, Calif.
    Ryan Newman, 2005 Sylvania 300, Loudon, N.H.
    Dale Jarrett, 2005 UAW-Ford 500, Talladega, Ala.
    Mark Martin, 2005 Banquet 400, Kansas City, Kan.
    Jamie McMurray, 2005 Winning Car Owner, Phoenix, Ariz.
    Bobby Labonte, 2000 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Champion
    Michael Waltrip, 1996 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Winner
    TBD, 2006 NEXTEL Open Winner
    TBD, Fan Vote
    [NOTE: Terry Labonte is eligible but will NOT run the race, just the Coke 600 at LMS]

    Radio/Television: Motor Racing Network (MRN) will broadcast the NEXTEL Open live to its affiliate radio stations with coverage beginning at 6:45pm/et. MRN's broadcast can also be heard on XM Satellite Radio channel 144. Cable channel FX will televise the race live. Coverage begins with a pre-race show at 7:00pm/et.
    Tickets: Tickets for Saturday night, May 20, start at $21 and include the NEXTEL Open, the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge, a pre-race concert by rock group Train and a performance by the Red Hot Chili Peppers during a break in the All-Star race. To purchase tickets, visit www.lowesmotorspeedway.com or call 1-800-455-FANS.(LMS PR)(5-11-2006)

  • NEXTEL Open Fast Facts
    Location: Lowe's Motor Speedway, Concord, N.C.
    Date: Saturday, May 20, 2006
    Time: 7:40pm/et
    Sanctioning Body: NASCAR, Daytona Beach, Fla.
    Series: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series - Special Event
    Eligibility: Drivers not already eligible for the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge and finished in the top 50 of the final 2005 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series points or were in the top 50 of the 2006 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series points on March 13, 2006, may participate in the NEXTEL Open.
    Length: The NEXTEL Open will consist of 30 laps, 45 miles, and will be run in two segments-20 laps and 10 laps. Between segment 1 and segment 2, there will be a yellow flag during which teams can pit and may elect to change tires, add fuel and make normal chassis adjustments. Teams pitting will not retain their position on the track and will start segment 2 at the rear of the field in the order they leave pit road.
    Purse: $950,000 (event record)
    Winner's share: $50,000
    2005 Winner: Brian Vickers, GMAC/ditech.com Chevrolet
    Qualifying: The better of two qualifying laps will determine a driver's official qualifying speed for the NEXTEL Open. Qualifying is scheduled for Friday, May 19, at 6:05pm/et.
    2005 Pole Sitter: Mike Bliss, NetZero/Best Buy Chevrolet 28.540 seconds, 189.208 mph
    Radio/Television: Motor Racing Network (MRN) will broadcast the NEXTEL Open live to its affiliate radio stations with coverage beginning at 6:45pm/et. MRN's broadcast can also be heard on XM Satellite Radio channel 144. Cable channel FX will televise the race live. Coverage begins with a pre-race show at 7:00pm/et.
    Tickets: Tickets for Saturday night, May 20, start at $21 and include the NEXTEL Open, the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge, a pre-race concert by rock group Train and a performance by the Red Hot Chili Peppers during a break in the All-Star race. To purchase tickets, visit www.lowesmotorspeedway.com or call 1-800-455-FANS.(LMS PR)(5-9-2006)

  • Local Newspaper and other Sites that cover the Concord/Charlotte, NC Area:
    Charlotte Chamber of Commerce
    Mooresville, NC
    Mooresville Tribune
    Race City USA
    Charlotte Observer
    Independent Tribune
    Asheville Citizen-Times
    Dunn Daily Record
    Fayetteville Observer-Times
    GoCarolina's
    Go Lake Norman
    Henderson Times-News
    News and Observer
    News and Record
    Winston-Salem Journal
    NBC 6
    WRAL-TV Raleigh, NC

  • National Sports Services - 2006 Nextel Cup and the Nextel All-Star Challenge Odds

  • Racebook: Nextel All-Star Challenge Odds - Odds To Win

  • Vegas Insider - Nextel All-Star Challenge Odds and
    Nextel All-Star Challenge preview by Micah Roberts

  • World Sports Exchange:NASCAR odds


    PAINT SCHEMES

    Car#/Driver Sponsor/Scheme/Promo Image Link
    #1-Martin Truex Jr. National Wild Turkey Federation #1 Schemes Page
    #7-Robby Gordon Jim Beam Black #7 Schemes Page
    #10-Scott Riggs Zerex, Pyroil, Car Brite none ...yet
    #12-Ryan Newman MyCircle Purple Alltel #12 Schemes Page
    #16-Greg Biffle Red, White Blue National Guard / Charter none ...yet
    #24-Jeff Gordon DuPont Performance Alliance #24 Schemes Page
    #26-Jamie McMurray Irwin Marathon Saw Blade #26 Schemes Page
    #41-Reed Sorenson 'Red' Target #41 Schemes Page
    #43-Bobby Labonte Go-GURT Portable Yogurt none...yet
    #45-Kyle Petty MyCokeRewards #45 Schemes Page


    • Special National Wild Turkey Federation on the #1 in All-Star Race: The National Wild Turkey Federation's flying turkey logo will appear on the DEI, Bass Pro Shops sponsored #1 race car, driven by 2-time Busch Series Champion Martin Truex Jr., at the NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge on May 20 th at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Bass Pro Shops salute to the NWTF is a part of the Conservation Fund's "Racing for America's Wildlife" program. The program is designed to engage the NASCAR community in conserving America's hunting and fishing heritage through habitat protection, restoration, education, and outreach.(Bass Pro Shops PR), see images on my #1 Team Schemes page.(5-18-2006)

    • Red #41 Scheme: The #41 Target team with driver Reed Sorenson is running the reverse colors of its primary paint scheme for the third consecutive race. What is red is white and visa versa. The scheme will also run in next weekend's race at Lowe's in addition to the October event at the track, and it will run in July at Daytona.(Chip Ganassi Racing w/ Felix Sabates PR), see an image on my #41 Team Schemes page.(5-17/19-2006)

    • Special Irwin Scheme for the #26 at the All-Star race: #26Jamie McMurray will drive the #26 Irwin Marathon Saw Blade Ford Fusion for this weekend's NEXTEL All-Star Challenge at Lowe's Motor Speedway.(Roush Racing PR)(5-17-2006)

    • Go-GURT scheme for Labonte at LMS: This weekend, Bobby Labonte and the #43 Go-GURT Dodge team head to the 1.5-mile Lowe's Motor Speedway for Saturday night's Nextel All-Star Challenge. Labonte's drive will mark the return of the famed #43 Dodge to the All-Star Challenge. The #43 Dodge last ran the All-Star race in 2000 with John Andretti behind the wheel. Labonte will be supporting the colors of Go-GURT Portable Yogurt. It is the first-ever yogurt in a tube, the perfect snack for on-the-go kids. Labonte will debut the #43 Go-GURT Portable Yogurt Dodge this weekend. The car will also race during the Coca-Cola 600 the following weekend.(Petty Enterprises/Moore Consulting Group PR)(5-17-2006)

    • Charter on the #16 hood: This weekend at the Nextel All-Star Challenge at LMS, the #16 National Guard team will run the signature red, white and blue paint scheme with a special Charter Communications hood design.(Roush Racing PR)(5-17-2006)

    • Vote for Kyle Campaign: Behind the wheel of a special MyCokeRewards racecar, Kyle Petty will continue his hard-driving campaign for the health and well-being of chronically ill youth. Launched today in downtown Charlotte, the "Vote Kyle, Reward Victory Junction" campaign is a grassroots effort fueled by Coca-Cola and other Petty Enterprises sponsors to reward the man who has given so much of his time and effort to charity with a spot in the Nextel All-Star Challenge on May 20, 2006 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. For the upcoming Coca-Cola 600, the #45 Petty Enterprises Dodge will feature a special MyCokeRewards primary sponsorship paint scheme. Petty also will carry the scheme in the Nextel All-Star Challenge on May 20 if voted into the race or if he wins the Nextel Open qualifying race. With the support of Petty's friends, family, sponsors, NASCAR fans and members of the NASCAR community, the "Vote Kyle, Reward Victory Junction" campaign is geared towards creating a unique opportunity to continue Kyle's tireless efforts to give back to kids. Should Petty make the race through the fan vote, Coca-Cola -- along with Petty Enterprises sponsors Wells Fargo, Schwan's and Tire Kingdom - are donating a minimum of $250,000 to support the ongoing efforts of the Victory Junction Gang Camp. Additionally, Kyle and Petty Enterprises also will donate any purse money won in the Nextel All-Star Challenge to Victory Junction. If Kyle wins the race that's an additional $1,000,000 to Victory Junction. Michael Waltrip was announced as Kyle's campaign manager at today's rally launching the "Vote Kyle, Reward Victory Junction" initiative. Speakers at the event included 7-time Nextel Cup champion Richard Petty, business executives and Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory. Also present at the rally, where race fans got a sneak peek at the MyCokeRewards racecar Petty will drive in the Coca-Cola 600 and the Nextel Open, were families and campers from Victory Junction. Voting for the Nextel All-Star Challenge is currently open and fans are invited to cast a vote to help get their favorite driver into the event by voting online at NASCAR.com. Voting will run through May 20 with the winner announced the day of the race. Race fans interested in more information about the "Vote Kyle, Reward Victory Junction" campaign have been asked to go to a special Web site, votekylepetty.com.(Petty Racing PR).(5-9-2006)

    • Petty to run MyCokeRewards scheme at Coke 600 - IMAGE: Not only will Kyle Petty run a special MyCokeRewards-themed car in the Coca-Cola 600, but some lucky fans will have a chance earn pieces of the #45 Petty Enterprises Dodge, and a piece of Coca-Cola 600 history, as part of the $50 million MyCokeRewards prize package. By collecting MyCokeRewards points, fans of the Coca-Cola 600 will have the chance to obtain hundreds of unique NASCAR-themed prizes, including the hood, deck lid and side panels from Petty's #45 MyCokeRewards Dodge. Other rewards include Petty's helmet, driver's uniform, shoes, and gloves, as well race-worn crew uniforms and other NASCAR-themed collectibles. Go to www.mycokerewards.com for more info.(Petty Racing PR), see an image on my #45 Team Scheme page.(5-4-2006)

    • #12 to run blue and purple scheme? UPDATE 4: got images from Penske Racing in Mooresville, NC from a reader in which the nose and smaller parts of the #12 Alltel Dodge of Ryan Newman is painted purple. See my #12 Team Schemes page.(4-6-2006)
      UPDATE: hearing this scheme could run at Phoenix on April 22.(4-7-2006)
      UPDATE 2: #12-Ryan Newman will make his eighth Phoenix International Raceway start and his 160th in NASCAR's Cup Series this Saturday. The new paint scheme on the Alltel Dodge this weekend will be hard to miss. The paint [purple] scheme highlights a new feature that Alltel will launch soon. The team plans on showcasing the paint scheme in several upcoming NEXTEL Cup Series races.(Penske Racing PR).
      UPDATE 3: have another image of the car, looks like the program will be MyCircle as is noted on the purple hood, see images of the scheme on my #12 Team Schemes page.(4-18-2006)
      UPDATE 4: Alltel announced that Ryan Newman's #12 Alltel Dodge, traditionally royal blue and black, will display a special paint scheme at various races throughout the 2006 season. Set to debut on April 22 at the Subway Fresh 500 in Phoenix, a new purple and black color design will hit the track in support of Alltel's exclusive wireless feature "My Circle." The new paint scheme will be featured during a total of five races, which include Talladega, Richmond, Darlington and the NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge.(Alltel Racing PR)(4-21-2006)

    • Special Scheme for #24 at All-Star race and other races: Jeff Gordon’s #24 DuPont car will once again carry the DuPont Performance Alliance colors at the Nextel Cup All-Star Challenge on May 20, 2006. Like last year, the car's color scheme was designed by renowned NASCAR graphic artist Sam Bass. This special version of the #24 Chevy celebrates DuPont’s all-star collision repair centers and auto body shops throughout the United States. The paint scheme reverses the primary colors of the Fire and Flames design, and the Performance Alliance logo and name will be featured on the hood, side panels and TV panel. Gordon will also be wearing a matching Performance Alliance-themed uniform for the special event. The Performance Alliance logo will appear on the cars decklid or tv panel at Richmond [May]. Dover [June], Loudon [July], Pocono [July], Watkins Glen, LMS [Oct], Martinsville and Texas. See images of the three schemes on my #24 Team Schemes page.(4-18-2006)

    • More Paint Scheme news can be found on Paint Schemes Gallery


      NEWS and RUMORS about the All-Star Challenge

    • Humpy Picks Edwards to win All-Star Race: H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, president and general manager of Lowe's Motor Speedway, thinks #99-Carl Edwards, just four years removed from those rough-and-tumble short-track wars, will collect the $1 million prize Saturday night for winning the 22nd running of NASCAR's NEXTEL All-Star Challenge annual all-star spectacular. Wheeler named Edwards as his selection Monday during his annual pick-the-winner press conference in downtown Charlotte. Known for his promotional flair and Karnac-type ability, Wheeler has correctly picked the winner of the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge 10 times in the past 17 races. Its three-segment format-40 laps, 30 laps and 20 laps-and the $1 million first-place prize combine to make the NEXTEL All-Star Challenge NASCAR's most unique race. Staying with his short-track theme, Wheeler selected former USAC open-wheel star #9-Kasey Kahne as his dark horse pick. Even though he finished second to Mark Martin in last year's NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge, #38-Elliott Sadler has not visited victory lane since 2004 and thus is not qualified for this year's all-star race. Wheeler says the Emporia, Va., native will remedy that by winning the NEXTEL Open. Veteran #21-Ken Schrader is Wheeler's dark horse selection for the Open. On-track activities for the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge kick off Friday night with qualifying for the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge and the NEXTEL Open. In addition to qualifying, the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series will compete in the Quaker Steak & Lube 200. Tickets start at $20. Tickets start at $21 and may be obtained by calling 1-800-455-FANS or online at lowesmotorspeedway.com.(LMS PR)(5-16-2006)

    • Star-studded guests to perform duties in pre-race events for All-Star Challenge: Sprint Nextel announced that rock groups Train and Red Hot Chili Peppers and perennial all-pro receiver Steve Smith will participate in pre-race festivities for the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge at Lowe's Motor Speedway on May 20. Pat Monahan, lead singer of the Grammy Award-winning rock band Train, will perform the National Anthem prior to the start of the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge. Warner Bros. Records artists Red Hot Chili Peppers will join the pre-race activities serving as Grand Marshals, which calls for them to give the famous command, "Gentleman, start your engines." In addition, the band will perform a live set, billed as the Red Hot Pit Stop, between the first and second segments of the 90-lap race. STAR Motorsports' Steve Smith, a wide receiver for the Carolina Panthers, will serve as Honorary Starter by waving the green flag to start the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge. Smith, a six-year NFL veteran, was an integral part of the Panther's playoff run in 2003 that resulted in a trip to Super Bowl XXXVIII. Tickets for the May 20 running of the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge are available by calling the speedway ticket office at (800) 455-FANS or online at www.lowesmotorspeedway.com. (LMS PR),(5-10-2006)

    • Fans Get Chance to Vote in Driver for NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge: For the third straight year, NASCAR fans will choose an at-large driver for the 2006 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, Saturday, May 20 (FX, 7:00pm/et). Fans will have the opportunity to vote in one driver among the top 50 in NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series points who is not already on the list of eligible drivers for this year’s all-star event. Voting is now available through the following channels:
      • On-line at www.NASCAR.Com
      • Trackside at the Nextel Experience
      • Bass Pro Shop retail locations
      In 2005, nearly 440,000 votes were cast, with Martin Truex, Jr. topping the fan vote to secure a position in the field. The 2006 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge kicks off May 20 at 7:30pm/et with the running of the NEXTEL Open, a 30-lap race divided into two segments featuring drivers who rank in the top 50 in the points standings, but have not yet qualified to run in the All-Star Challenge. The winner of the Open advances to the All-Star Challenge, which begins at 9 p.m. and is a 90-lap competition, divided into three segments. The race winner will receive prize money in excess of $1 million. Tickets for the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge can be purchased online at Lowesmotorspeedway.com, at the Lowe’s Motor Speedway Ticket Office or by calling (800) 455-FANS.(NASCAR PR)(4-22-2006)

    • France backing all-star race locale: NASCAR Chairman Brian France offered his strongest endorsement yet for keeping the all-star race at Lowe's Motor Speedway during a speech Tuesday at the Charlotte Business Journal's annual Power Breakfast, the Business Journal reports. France, who has flirted with the notion of relocating the Nextel All-Star Challenge in recent years, said reinvigorated corporate and community support for the race has put it on more solid ground. The all-star race has attracted crowds of 120,000 to 140,000 in recent years. This year's race is May 20. "I think the all-star race has done very, very well here," France said during the speech in front of more than 1,000 civic and business leaders gathered at the Charlotte Convention Center. "Historically, big events tend not to move around much unless they're not working well. [Charlotte civic leaders] have started to rally around the [motorsports] industry and the all-star race. Community leaders have sorted [an earlier lack of attention] out." The NASCAR chairman also said the uncertainty of moving events around on the schedule is a "bad business model" because it discourages track operators from investing in their events and venues. A recent higher profile for the all-star race and related events has made France more bullish on having it in Charlotte: "I hope we'll be able to keep it here." Even France's endorsement included a bit of wiggle room. He reiterated his stance that every race is subject to re-evaluation on a yearly basis. Still, the positive comments on the all-star race in Charlotte represent France's strongest public backing of keeping it in place. Corporate and political leaders began rallying around the all-star race when NASCAR officials began discussing a possible relocation of the event in 2004. Since then, a local organizing committee has been formed with state and local government agencies contributing money to create ancillary events tied to the race.(SceneDaily.com)(4-19-2006)


      THE FORMAT

    • 2006 All-Star Challenge: 7:00pm/et | Saturday, May 20 | FX | Lowe's Motor Speedway
      The Nextel Open - Eligibility
      The winner of the Nextel Open, a preliminary event for teams not qualified for the Nextel All-Star Challenge, and another driver who wins the All-Star Challenge Fan Vote become eligible to compete in the All-Star Challenge. To qualify for the Nextel Open event, drivers must be in the Top 50 of the final 2005 Nextel Cup point standings, or in the Top 50 of the current point standings as of March 13, 2006.
      Distance: 30 laps, 45 miles (run in two segments of 20 laps and 10 laps)

      Qualifying: One round of qualifying will be held Friday, May 19, at 7:10pm/et. Each driver will run three laps with a mandatory four-tire, pit stop. The total elapsed time will comprise each team's qualifying effort.

      Open Qualifying: The better of two qualifying laps will determine a driver's official qualifying speed for the NEXTEL Open. Qualifying is scheduled for Friday, May 19, at 6:05pm/et.

    • NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge

      Eligibility:
      • Drivers and car owners who have won races in 2006 and 2005. If a driver leaves a team with which he has won a race, he remains eligible and the car owner's new driver also is eligible (through the last race before the All-Star Race).
      • Past Cup champions in the last 10 years
      • Drivers who have won the all-star race in the last 10 years
      • The winning driver of the Nextel Open
      Note: If 20 drivers are not eligible, winners from previous seasons still active in the Cup Series become eligible for the All-Star Race. All active drivers during that season become eligible, even if the field exceeds 20 competitors.

      • Distance: 90 laps, 135 miles (run in three segments of 40 laps, 30 laps and 20 laps)

      • First Segment: Teams must make a mandatory green-flag, four-tire pit stop during the first segment. This stop must be made after the completion of Lap 14 and before the completion of Lap 16. Pit stops made during cautions will not count toward this pit stop requirement.

      • Between Segments 1 and 2, there will be a 10-minute break during which a random drawing will determine if as few as six or as many as 12 cars will be inverted. Teams will pit and may elect to change tires, add fuel and make normal chassis adjustments. Changing of springs, shock absorbers or rear-ends will not be permitted.

      • Between Segments 2 and 3 there will be a yellow flag during which teams may elect to pit. They may add fuel, change tires and make normal chassis adjustments. Teams pitting will not retain their position and will restart at the rear of the field in the order they leave pit road. Only green flag laps count during the third segment.

      • All restarts will be double file and lapped cars will start at the rear.(NASCAR.com)(4-21-2006)


    PAST WINNERS
    OF THE WINSTON/NEXTEL ALL-STAR CHALLENGE

    Year Driver
    2006 Jimmie Johnson (2)
    Kevin Harvick (seg 2)
    Kyle Busch (seg 1)
    2005 Mark Martin (2)
    Ryan Newman (seg 2)
    Mark Martin (seg 1)
    2004 Matt Kenseth
    Ryan Newman (seg 2)
    Tony Stewart (seg 1)
    2003 Jimmie Johnson
    Kurt Busch (seg 2)
    Tony Stewart (seg 1)
    2002 Ryan Newman
    2001 Jeff Gordon(3)
    2000 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
    1999 Terry Labonte(2)
    1998 Mark Martin
    1997 Jeff Gordon(2)
    1996 Michael Waltrip
    1995 Jeff Gordon
    1994 Geoffrey Bodine
    1993 Dale Earnhardt(3)
    1992 Davey Allison(2)
    1991 Davey Allison
    1990 Dale Earnhardt(2)
    1989 Rusty Wallace
    1988 Terry Labonte
    1987 Dale Earnhardt
    1986 Bill Elliott
    1985 Darrell Waltrip
    All but 1986 have been held at Lowes Motor Speedway, in 1986 it was at Atlanta

    PAST WINNERS OF THE
    WINSTON / NEXTEL OPEN

    Year Driver
    2006 Scott Riggs
    2005 Brian Vickers
    2004 Sterling Marlin
    2003 Jeff Burton
    2002 Jeremy Mayfield(2)
    Ryan Newman
    (No Bull 5 Sprint)
    2001 Johnny Benson
    Todd Bodine
    (No Bull 5 Sprint)
    2000 Steve Park
    Jerry Nadeau
    (No Bull 5 Sprint)
    1999 Tony Stewart
    1998 Jeremy Mayfield
    1997 Ricky Craven
    1996 Jimmy Spencer
    1995 Todd Bodine
    1994 Jeff Gordon
    1993 Sterling Marlin(3)
    1992 Michael Waltrip(2)
    1991 Michael Waltrip
    1990 Dick Trickle
    1989 Sterling Marlin(2)
    1988 Sterling Marlin
    1987 Buddy Baker
    1986 Benny Parsons
    1985 none
    All but 1986 have been held at Lowes Motor Speedway, in 1986 it was at Atlanta. The Winston Open was known as the Atlanta Invitational in 1986

2008 Nextel All-Star Challenge
2007 Nextel All-Star Challenge
2005 Nextel All-Star Challenge
2004 Nextel All-Star Challenge
2003 Winston
2002 Winston
2001 Winston
2000 Winston
1999 Winston

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