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CHARLOTTE, NC - APRIL 25: Dale Earnhardt Jr. gives a statement announcing his retirement from NASCAR after the 2017 season at the Hendrick Motorsports Team Center on April 25, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Mike Comer/Getty Images) | Getty Images

April 25 – Today in Jayski’s NASCAR history

April 25, 2008

  • Movie to film at Alabama speedway: The latest installment of New Line Cinema’s popular horror/thriller franchise, Final Destination 4, will film racing sequences at Mobile International Speedway [AL] from Monday, May 26th to Saturday, May 31st. The Ronald McDonald House Night race, scheduled for 8:00pm on May 31st, has been moved to a 3:00pm start to accommodate filming. The film crew will be shooting crowd scenes and reactions during the racing program on Saturday, May 31st. Final Destination 4 stars a fresh ensemble cast that includes Bobby Campo, Shantel Van Santen, Haley Webb, Nick Zano, Krista Allen, Andrew Fiscella and Mykelti Williamson. Final Destination 4 is being shot in High Definition with the most advanced form of stereoscopic image capture yet invented – Fusion 3D. It utilizes the dynamic PACE camera system to ensure a rich visual experience matched only by reality.(MIS)(4-25-2008)
  • Smaller Restrictor Plate at Talladega: For the third time in the past four Talladega Cup races, crew chiefs will deal with a new size for the four holes on the restrictor plates required at the track by NASCAR. Sunday’s holes will be 15/16ths of an inch in diameter, 1/32nd of an inch smaller than the holes for the fall race, the first plate race for the Car of Tomorrow. The change will cut about 25 horsepower. In last’s year spring race and the 2006 fall race, the holes were 7/8ths of an inch in diameter. The holes were enlarged for the Car of Tomorrow because the taller, boxier vehicle required more horsepower to go the same speed as the old ride. Two years ago, the holes were 57/64ths of an inch, but NASCAR cut the size because of the faster speeds produced by Talladega’s smooth new pavement. The restrictor plate reduces the flow of air into the engine’s carburetor. NASCAR has required the plates at its races at Talladega and Daytona to slow the cars at the giant, high-banked tracks.(Alabama Live)(4-25-2008) Comment here
  • Dale Jr. Recruiting Men and Women for the U.S. Navy: The U.S. Navy and Dale Earnhardt Jr., announced the formation of the Dale Jr. Division, an 88-person boot camp division at Recruit Training Command. Potential sailors will be able to start signing up for the division on May 24 at their local recruiting station. To officially launch the division, Earnhardt Jr. will drive the JR Motorsports #83 Navy Dale Jr. Chevy in the Nationwide Series CARQUEST Auto Parts 300 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway on May 24. The national recruiting effort is the first of its kind for the Navy, and will be supported by a national advertising and marketing campaign.(JR Motorsports PR), see an image of the car on my #83 NNS Team Paint Scheme Page.(4-25-2008)
  • Microsoft Small Business joines up with MWR: Microsoft expanded its motorsports reach today in an effort to increase visibility of its growing Small Business Specialist Community of Partners and solutions for small businesses by announcing it has formed a unique sponsorship with Michael Waltrip Racing. Microsoft will serve as an associate sponsor on MWR’s #00 Toyota Camry entry driven by rookie Michael McDowell for the remainder of the 2008 season, beginning this weekend at Talladega Superspeedway. The sponsorship, in conjunction with California-based advertising agency RainMakers International [this was the company and the sponsorship deal with #49 BAM Racing at 49team.com], offers a motorsports marketing platform to Microsoft’s Partners, a growing group which supports businesses everywhere in the Microsoft Small Business Specialist Community. Each participating partner will receive a structured marketing package which utilizes Michael Waltrip Racing marks, images of the #00 race car with their logo on it, tickets, likeness of Michael McDowell in his driver’s suit, and the usage of Waltrip’s race facility for contest winners. Additionally, each partner will have the ability to utilize the discounted media buying services offered by RainMakers, and more.(MWR)(4-25-2008)
  • Polaroid on the #41: Reed Sorenson will document his Talladega weekend through a Polaroid Photo Diary. Polaroid will be making its NSCS debut on the #41 Dodge this weekend in the Aaron’s 499. Sorenson’s diary will be showcased on Polaroid.com.(CGRFS), see images of the scheme on my #41 Team Schemes page.(4-25-2008)
  • Burton is it: #31-Jeff Burton is the lone driver who has completed every lap of competition this season in the Sprint Cup Series. Burton also has completed 82.8% of the total laps (2,235 of 2,699) running in the top 15 and leads all drivers with the most runs on the lead lap (2,694 of 2,699). Burton has finished 14 straight races on the lead lap.(RCR)(4-25-2008)
  • Juicy Fruit colors for Montoya: The Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit brand will adorn the hood of the #42 Dodge this weekend at Talladega Superspeedway with Juan Pablo Montoya.(CGRFS), see images of the scheme on my #42 Team Schemes page.(4-25-2008)
  • DIRECTV returns to the #07: For the second race in a row, Clint Bowyer’s #07 Chevy will feature a blue and white DIRECTV paint scheme. Jack Daniel’s, Bowyer’s traditional primary sponsor, will be featured on the car’s deck lid and lower-rear quarter panels.(RCR), see images of the scheme on my #07 Team Schemes page.(4-25-2008)
  • Tums scheme for Franchitti at ‘dega: This weekend the all-new TUMS QuikPak instant dissolve powder will serve as the primary sponsor of the #40 CGRFS Dodge Charger at Talladega Superspeedway fro Dario Franchitti. TUMS first became a CGRFS partner in 2007, as an associate sponsor of the #40 and #41 cars. This will be Franchitti’s first time representing the TUMS brand. The #40 TUMS QuikPak Dodge team is taking on the identity of its primary sponsor by renaming the pit crew "The TUMS QuikPak" for this weekend’s Aaron’s 499 Sprint Cup series race.(CGRFS), see images of the scheme on my #40 Team Schemes page.(4-25-2008)
  • Stewart to leave JGR? UPDATE 3 statements Gibbs and Stewart:Sources tell Sports Illustrated that #20-Tony Stewart is working on the final stages of a deal to move from Joe Gibbs Racing to Haas CNC next season. Considering the ramifications of such a move, no one’s admitting anything quite yet, as you’d expect. When reached for comment, Haas CNC Racing spokesman Ron Mench claims there’s been no communication between Stewart and the organization. Stewart’s PR spokesman Mike Arning was noncommittal ("I’ve heard what you’ve heard," when asked about Haas CNC) but he reminded SI [Sports Illustrated] that Stewart’s contract with Gibbs runs through the 2009 season. "He’s there this year and he’s there next year," claimed Arning. "And I know for a fact that JGR is interested in retaining Tony for ’10 and beyond. They’d like him to retire at Joe Gibbs Racing. As Tony’s said many times, ‘Nothing’s broke. Why change it?’ Tony’s going to have a lot of options in front of him; why wouldn’t he? But I don’t see [an early out happening] … everyone is going to live up to the terms of the contract that runs through ’09." However, sources are adamant that not just the talking, but deal-making is already taking place for Stewart to go elsewhere. And, while sometimes a formidable opponent, contracts can be easily bought out, as Jamie McMurray and Kurt Busch have shown us in recent years.(Sports Illustrated)(4-23-2008)
    UPDATE: Tony Stewart has begun discussion with Joe Gibbs Racing officials about his future with the company, ESPN.com has learned. And that future, sources say, is questionable. Multiple sources close to the situation who spoke on condition of anonymity said Stewart told Gibbs officials that he’d like to be released from the final year of his current driving contract, which expires at the conclusion of the 2009 season. "He definitely has some options," JGR president J.D. Gibbs said. "To me it’s no different than any of the the options he’s had before. The reality is he’s racing here through 2009. There’s no ifs, ands or buts about that one. Our stance is he’s racing for us through 2009." Stewart’s publicist, Mike Arning, said "Tony’s contract is through the 2009 season. When that is up he’ll have a lot of options for 2010 and beyond. But in terms of what he’s going to do, or might do, for now and in between, as far as JGR is concerned he’s their driver for 2009." Sources said Stewart is intrigued by the thought of team ownership. One potential scenario mentioned was a partnership with Haas/CNC Racing, under which Stewart would own as much as a 50% stake in the race team that currently fields the #66 and #70 Chevys. Under that scenario he would drive one of those two machines. Haas GM Joe Custer said he has spoken with several people about the future status of his team, including Stewart’s group. He was adamant that his team has reached no deal with Stewart, but would "by all means be interested in discussing a partnership with a driver of his caliber." Such a move would reunite Stewart with Chevrolet, which sources said was of the utmost importance to the driver, given that he’s driven for General Motors for most of his career, and that GM sponsors Stewart’s open wheel sprint car program. Gibbs switched to Toyotas from Chevrolets in 2008. Haas/CNC Racing currently fields cars built and powered by Hendrick Motorsports, the organization that has won four Cup championships in the past 10 years, including the past two.(ESPN.com)
    UPDATE 2: The following is a statement from J.D. Gibbs, president of Joe Gibbs Racing, regarding the contract status of driver Tony Stewart: "There has been much speculation regarding the future of our driver, Tony Stewart. Tony is currently here through 2009, and from a Joe Gibbs Racing standpoint, we hope he drives for us longer than that and retires here. Tony is a great partner and a huge asset to Joe Gibbs Racing. Right now, we are focused on winning races and winning the next two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championships under his current contract."(Joe Gibbs Racing/True Speed Communication)(4-24-2008)
    UPDATE Stewart speaks: Tony Stewart has several different offers to leave Joe Gibbs Racing, and he is considering every option – including ones that could make him the owner of his own NASCAR team. "We’ve got multiple offers on the table right now, and there’s a couple in particular that really have caught our interest," Stewart told reporters Thursday after Nationwide Series practice at Talladega Superspeedway. "We haven’t made a 100% decision yet on what we’re going to do, but we’re going to look at all the options. And the options are exciting, all the way around." Stewart’s deal with JGR runs through 2009, and he said last summer he was interested in signing an extension with the team he’s driven for since 1998. But contract talks moved slowly, with Stewart saying in January he was in no rush to get a deal done. Stewart said Thursday he has not ruled out staying with JGR, but when he began negotiating a new contract, other teams approached him with new opportunities. The same thing happened back in 2003, when Stewart was able to leverage several deals – including one from Chip Ganassi – to secure a more lucrative contract with Gibbs. "A wise person told me it never cost a dime to listen, so right now we’re all ears," Stewart said of the latest offers. "Right now it’s just a matter of figuring out what we want to do, and being smart. We’ve had a great run at Joe Gibbs Racing. It doesn’t mean it’s over. We’re just going to look at everything that’s out there." Stewart said Thursday he has informed Gibbs officials of his offers, and there were discussions of potentially leaving the team early depending on what deal he agreed to. But he said "a couple offers" included ownership, and the thought of running his own team excited him. Stewart said he has not discussed owning a portion of JGR with owner Joe Gibbs. "Right now we’ve not asked to be released out of our contract," he said. "They know there are other offers on the table and we’ve said, `What if this is the case? And what if this is presented to us? Is there a possibility we could be released from our contract early?’ But we have not asked to be released from our contract." Cary Agajanian, who represents Stewart through the Motorsports Management Int. agency, cited the sensitivity of contract talks in declining to comment. "His contract is through 2009 with Joe Gibbs Racing," said Agajanian, "that’s about all we know, and all we can say."(Associated Press)(4-25-2008)
    am sure this will be much discussed about over the weekend at Talladega, there are already many articles posted on the Article Links page about the subject.
  • Talladega Goodyear Tire Notes: This weekend will be the first time that Goodyear has run a race on these tire codes . . . compared to last year at Talladega, there are two changes of note on this tire set-up . . . first, this left-side code (D-4138) is slightly taller to adjust the stagger and align this set-up with what was run at Daytona in February . . . second, this right-side code (D-4140) has a slight design modification to help reduce the operating temperature of the tire. . the compounds on both sides of the car are the same as in 2007 . . . this is the only track at which these tire codes will be run this season . . .teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup will run different tire codes than those in the Nationwide Series at Talladega this weekend . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners in all four tire positions at Talladega . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.(Goodyear), see full report, pressures, codes and more on my Talladega Race Info page.(4-25-2008)
  • Team Dakar USA/Robby Gordon Update in the Central Europe Rally:On the familiar tracks of Veszprem, Robby Gordon claimed his second special win on the sixth stage of the Central Europe Rally. Gordon, who yesterday suffered a major setback in the overall classification yesterday when he broke the rear hub of his Hummer was determined to showcase his teams talents. Before the start of the second special of the day he and BJ Baldwin wagered dinner on the outcome. The bet was to see if BJ could stay within 45 seconds of Gordon’s time. While the chance to win the rally overall is all but gone, the two drivers served notice that the Hummers are for real. Both drivers attacked the course and in the end Gordon finished first, one second over Carlos Sainz of Spain. Baldwin was not far behind, in fact just 19 seconds. Gordon got the victory and Baldwin gets dinner. Team Dakar USA also had a strong showing in the first 157km special in the morning. Gordon and Baldwin claimed the sixth and seventh spots respectively. The Vanguard Hummer has now moved up into the seventh spot while Gordon’s Monster Energy Toyo Tire Hummer is in 11th. Tomorrow the Central Europe Rally wraps with a 155km special on the Veszprem tracks and then heads to Balaton Lake for the final festivities. Instead of participating in the festivities Gordon will board a plane and deadhead for Talladega for Sundays NASCAR race.(Robby Gordon PR), earlier updates about the rally are available on the #7 Team Page.(4-25-2008)
  • Busch can Tie Ard for Consecutive Wins Record: Kyle Busch will attempt to accomplish something that has happened only once in the 27-season history of the Nationwide Series, when the Aaron’s 312 takes place Saturday at Talladega Superspeedway. Busch has won the past three Nationwide races, at Texas, Phoenix and Mexico City. The series record for consecutive victories is four, set by Sam Ard in 1983 during the circuit’s second season.(Talladega Superspeedway PR)(4-25-2008)
  • Arctic Ice Energy Drink to Sponsor the #22 in Six Races: Fitz Motorsports announces that Arctic Ice Energy Drink, a product of Arctico Beverage, will be the primary sponsor of the #22 Dodge in six Nationwide Series Events throughout the remainder of the 2008 season – starting this weekend at Talladega Superspeedway. The #22 Arctic Ice Energy Drink Dodge will be driven by multiple drivers in six Nationwide Events, including a few Sprint Cup regulars. In addition, Fitz Motorsports Developmental Driver John Freeman will make his Nationwide Series debut in the #22 Arctic Ice Energy Drink Dodge later this year. Freeman has been a part of the Fitz Motorsports lineup for two years, competing in the NASCAR Camping World Series.(SPORTSOne / Fitz Motorsports PR)(4-25-2008)
  • Harvick Institutes Drug Testing Policy for KHI: Kevin Harvick’s voice was perhaps the loudest of anyone’s during the recent discussion about NASCAR drug testing. Harvick called for a series-wide random drug testing policy two weeks ago but admitted at the time that his own Kevin Harvick Inc. race team had no testing policy of its own. Upon returning home to North Carolina, Harvick fixed that. KHI’s Nationwide and Craftsman Truck Series drivers and crew chiefs have all since been tested, and an independent testing company has been retained to test the entire company.(SceneDaily.com)(4-25-2008)
  • Marks to raise awareness for The V Foundation at Kansas: Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate Justin Marks will drive a special paint scheme this weekend at Kansas Speedway. The #9 Tundra will be in it’s familiar green and white, but the hood will carry a special message. Marks, of Rocklin, CA, enjoys sports and is a big fan of the late basketball coach Jimmy Valvano. This weekend, Marks’ Toyota will help raise awareness for The V Foundation for Cancer Research. "Truly it’s an honor to represent The V Foundation on our Germain Racing Tundra this weekend in Kansas. They have made an incredible impression in the fight against cancer in professional sports for so many years and playing a small part in spreading their message in our corner of the sporting world is humbling," said Marks. The V Foundation’s website is jimmyw.org. Following his Kansas race, Marks take to the track at Rockingham Raceway Park driving the #01 AW North Carolina Toyota as part of a joint effort with Hattori Racing Enterprises.(Germain Racing PR)(4-25-2008)

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