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August 2016 News Archives

 

News from August 31, 2016


  • Michigan penalties/warnings announced: NASCAR has announced penalties and warnings following the Pure Michigan 400 race at Michigan International Speedway on August 28st.
    #2-Keselowski Failed the post-race laser inspection station (LIS) measurements. The team was issued a P2 penalty for violation of sections 12.1; 20.17.3.1.2. Crew chief Paul Wolfe has been fined $15,000; team has been assessed with the loss of 10 championship owner and 10 championship driver points.
    The following warnings were issued:
    #2-Keselowski (3), #7-Smith (4), #31-Newman (3), #95-McDowell (1; penalty served in Michigan). Failed LIS twice, pre-race inspection. Written Warning.
    #30-Wise (1), #95-McDowell (1; penalty served in Michigan). Failed LIS three times, pre-qualifying inspection. Written warning and loss of 15 minutes of practice time.
    #5-Kahne (2), #24-Elliott (3), #46-Annett (3). Failed LIS twice, pre-qualifying inspection. Written Warning.
    #6-Bayne (0; penalty served in Michigan), #7-Smith (4), #42-Larson (2). Failed template inspection twice, pre-qualifying inspection. Written Warning.
    () — total current warnings.
    See the Michigan Post-Event Penalty & Warning Report (pdf) for more.(8-31-2016)
  • Richard Petty Motorsports make changes to competition department: Richard Petty Motorsports announced competition changes to improve their on-track performance. Effectively immediately, Philippe Lopez and Scott McDougall will temporarily oversee all competition duties and roles previously held by Sammy Johns both at the track and at the race shop. The change comes as part of an immediate, aggressive strategy by RPM leadership to improve speed, performance and future growth of RPM. The goal is to improve on-track results from 2016 and to capitalize on the progress made in previous seasons.
    “The past several years, we have made significant investments in our organization with the goal of winning races and to compete at a high level on a weekly basis,” said Brian Moffitt, Chief Executive Officer, Richard Petty Motorsports. “We now have direction over our own chassis and bodies and work closely with Ford Performance on technology and engineering. With these investments, unfortunately, we have not seen the on-track results that we expected this season. As we look ahead to 2017, we are taking steps forward to improve our on-track product to better serve our partners and fans. This means analyzing every part of our organization and making adjustments where needed. Sammy Johns has been a big part of our organization; he helped us succeed in many different ways and helped us become a winning race team. We wish him nothing but the best going forward.”
    Lopez and McDougall will begin their duties at the track in Darlington this weekend.(Richard Petty Motorsports)(8-31-2016)
  • Michigan TV Ratings: NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Michigan earned a 1.9 overnight rating on NBCSN Sunday afternoon, down 20% from last year (2.4) and down 37% from 2014 (3.0). Excluding rainouts, the 1.9 is the third-lowest for a Sprint Cup race this season – ahead of only Kentucky in July and Kansas in May (1.8 for each).(NBC Sports/Sports Media Watch), see race-by-race TV Ratings for 2016 and a comparison chart on the 2016 TV Ratings page.(8-31-2016)
  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Darlington:
    #88-Jeff Gordon …… 111.2
    #11-Denny Hamlin …… 107.8
    #18-Kyle Busch …… 105.2
    #48-Jimmie Johnson …… 104.4
    #16-Greg Biffle …… 102.9
    #5-Kasey Kahne …… 96.1
    #4-Kevin Harvick …… 95.9
    #31-Ryan Newman …… 94.2
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr …… 94.0
    #78-Martin Truex Jr …… 93.6
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2016 races (11 total) among active drivers at Darlington Raceway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)
  • Fan featured on Scott’s #44 at Darlington: Twisted Tea will be back on the hood of the #44 Ford Fusion, featuring their unique yellow and blue paint scheme with a special twist this weekend. Brian Scott and the #44 Twisted Tea team will have a special fan photo riding along on the car at this weekend’s Bojangles’ Southern 500, thanks to a promotion with Twisted Tea. Through the “Get Your Face in the Race” promotion from Twisted Tea, fans sent in photos to be featured on the quarter panels of the #44 Twisted Tea Ford. Paige from Lewiston, New York was chosen out of the many submissions and will have her photo featured on the yellow and blue #44 Twisted Tea Ford. She will also be able to see her face in the race this weekend and meet Scott as she attends the Southern 500 with three of her closest friends.(Richard Petty Motorsports)(8-31-2016)
  • Sad News – Charles Hardy: Charles L. Hardy, age 82, of Hiram, GA, passed at home surrounded by his family on Tuesday, August 30, 2016. He was born on December 3, 1933, in Dallas, GA, to the late John Pinkney & Simmie Beatrice Hardy, and was preceded in death by his sister, Mary Martin and granddaughter, Jessica Hardy. Mr. Hardy founded Hardy Chevrolet Buick GMC in Dallas in 1978 and Hardy Family Ford in 1985. His wife, Jeanette, is the Dealer Principal of Hardy Chevrolet in Gainesville, Georgia. Prior to that, Charles was a successful home builder, mobile home dealer and operator of Southeastern International Drag Way. During the mid-1990s, Charles owned a NASCAR team and later partnered with Bill Elliottt to form the Elliott-Hardy Racing Team, in which Bill Elliott drove the #94 McDonald’s Ford. Later, Mr. Hardy owned a team NASCAR’s Craftsman Truck Series under sponsorship by Ortho. Mr. Hardy was a 50+ year member of Bartlett Lodge #139 F&AM;, of Hiram, and Yaarab Shrine Temple in Atlanta, He was widely recognized for his philanthropic contributions, especially to the Shriners’ Hospitals for Children and WellStar Paulding Hospital. Charter member of Paulding County Shrine Club. Mr. Hardy was a life-long resident of Paulding County and cared deeply about his community, his employees and his family. That feeling of goodwill was epitomized in his trademark slogan, “We love you and we need you!” Greater than any business achievement was his love for his family, which include his wife of 64 years, Jeanette Hardy of Hiram, GA; children, John C. & Teresa Hardy of Hiram, GA, Diane & Gene Fuller of Hiram, GA, Brenda & Terry Hillhouse of Hiram, GA, Mike & Robin Hardy of Hiram, GA, and Rene & Mike Gordon of Hiram, GA, brothers-in-law, Richard Martin of Hiram, GA, and Tony Eubanks of Douglasville, GA; grandchildren, Julie & Lee Burger of Hiram, GA, Ashley Benson of Hiram, GA, Justin & Lara Fuller of Hiram, GA, Jennifer & Mark Campbell of Hiram, GA, Natalie & Josh Higgins of Hiram, GA, Niki & Michael Hilley of Hiram, GA, Mandy & Shain Jackson of Hiram, GA, Chuck Hardy of Hiram, GA, Jeb Gordon of Hiram, GA, and John Gordon of Hiram, GA; fifteen great-grandchildren, four nieces and one nephew. Funeral services will be held on Friday, September 2, 2016 at 2 PM, from West Ridge Church, with Reverend Don Rackley, Mayor Boyd Austin, Donnie Williams, and Mr. Jeb Gordon officiating. Interment will follow in Paulding Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends at the funeral home on Thursday, September 1, 2016, from 3 PM until 9 PM, and on Friday, September 2, 2016, at West Ridge Church, from 11 AM until 1 PM. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to either Shriners Children’s Hospital- Greenville at www.shrinershospitalsforchildren.org/donate, or mail to Shriners Hospitals for Children 950 West Faris Road, Greenville, SC 29605; or The CART Fund, make checks payable to The CART Fund, mail to Rotary Club of Paulding County PO Box 853, Dallas, GA 30132. Clark Funeral Home in Hiram, GA, is in charge of arrangements.(8-31-2016)
  • Sad News – Steve Edens: W. Steve Edens passed away on August 24, 2016. Edens served honorably in the U. S. Air Force. He enjoyed a long career in automobile racing and was a fixture in NASCAR, representing Crane Cams. Full obituary, guest book and service info at at East Lawn Funeral Home website (8-31-2016)
  • Cope names Darlington sponsors: Darlington Throwback Weekend 2016 will mark the return of the iconic rocket red Chevrolet driven to victory twice by Derrike Cope during the 1990 Cup season for the Whitcomb Racing Team. To The Point Custom Apparel is partnering with Derrike Cope Racing with JP Motorsports as the primary sponsor for this event. Cope’s Daytona 500 victory was followed up at Dover later in the season. Twenty-six years later, Cope is the first competitor to drive his own throwback scheme. As part of their primary sponsorship, To The Point Apparel has outfitted the DCR crew throughout the 2016 season and will be featuring special throwback uniforms for the entire team this weekend to commemorate this historical event. As always, E-hydrate will be aboard the #70. Providing premium Protien-on-the-Go pouches and electrolyte infused drink sticks. Associate sponsors include Supplies Unlimited, Glenn Brown Trucking, Sammi’s Best products by Bestlife International, Fatz Cafe, Ice-Frost. Thank you to Ryan Daley Designs for the rendering and MTFX Graphics for the wrap of this legendary throwback scheme.(Derrike Cope Racing), see an image of the car on the #70 team paint schemes page.(8-31-2016)
  • Gase honoring Jimmy Means at Darlington: Thanks to sponsors Agri Supply and Franklin Signs, Joey Gase announced he will be honoring his team owner, Jimmy Means, with a throwback scheme this weekend at Darlington Raceway. Gase will run a baby blue colored car, similar to the Alka-Selzer car Jimmy Means ran through 89-91. “This car brings back a lot of good memories for me,” said Jimmy Means. “Its amazing how many people still today tell me how much they loved this car”.(Joey Gase Racing), see an image of the car on the #52 team paint schemes page.(8-31-2016)


    News from August 30, 2016


     

  • Sad News – Betty Jane France: Betty Jane France, known fondly as the “First Lady of NASCAR Racing,” died Monday, according to various sources, including a tweet from a family member. A NASCAR representative would neither confirm nor deny France’s death, but a friend of the family late Monday night confirmed that she had died in the afternoon. Betty Jane’s grandson, driver Ben Kennedy, sent out a message on his Twitter account that read: “We all miss you grandma. Thank you for being you still can’t believe it. #neverforgotten” France was executive vice president and assistant treasurer of NASCAR and chairperson of the NASCAR Foundation. The Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award was created in her honor in 2011. Through the NASCAR Foundation, this award recognizes outstanding charitable and volunteer efforts of NASCAR fans. For the last five years, France presented this award at the NASCAR Awards Banquet in Las Vegas. A native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, France, the former Betty Jane Zachary, met her husband, William C. France in her hometown. They married and soon relocated to Daytona Beach. Bill France Jr. rose through the ranks to become the chairman and CEO of NASCAR. He passed away in June 2007 at the age of 74. France’s children, Lesa France Kennedy, CEO of International Speedway Corporation and Brian France, chairman and CEO of NASCAR, now lead the empire started by William H.G. France, along with Betty Jane’s brother-in-law, Jim France, who is vice chairman of NASCAR and chairman of ISC. Betty Jane France was a community leader and known as a champion of health care for children. She assisted in the establishment of the “Speediatrics” children’s care unit at Halifax Health Medical Center and helped develop a similar facility for children in Homestead, where International Speedway Corporation owns a racetrack. She was a member of the Junior League and has served on boards of numerous area community service organizations including the Volusia/Flagler chapter of the American Red Cross and the Garden Club of the Halifax Country.(Daytona Beach News-Journal)
    AND Betty Jane France, a philanthropist in support of children’s health causes, passed away Monday evening. France is the mother of NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France and International Speedway Corporation CEO Lesa France Kennedy. A native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, the former Betty Jane Zachary was the widow of the late NASCAR Chairman and CEO William C. France, who passed away in 2007. Betty Jane France was executive vice president and assistant treasurer of NASCAR and the chairwoman emeritus of the NASCAR Foundation.
    “Last night, the NASCAR family lost a mother, a grandmother, a friend and the light that guided the sport’s charitable arm,” said Brian France. “My mother taught us incredible values, that of love, patience, compassion and joy. She embraced life every day, and nothing fueled her passion more than children. Her unmatched efforts in building The NASCAR Foundation improved the lives of millions of children throughout this country. And because of that, her legacy will live forever. My father leaned on my mother throughout his life, relying on her wisdom and calming demeanor to help grow the sport of NASCAR. She was there, every step of the way. When we lost my father, her positive presence remained, as she used her immense skill to grow NASCAR’s heart and soul, The NASCAR Foundation. Our family thanks you for all of your thoughts, prayers and well wishes. My mother was a special woman, and an impressive person, and she will be dearly missed.”
    France became chairwoman of The NASCAR Foundation upon the foundation’s inception in 2004. Headquartered in Daytona Beach, the foundation is an entity that embodies the compassion of the NASCAR Family and its commitment to serving communities. The Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award Presented by Nationwide, recognizing outstanding charitable and volunteer efforts of NASCAR fans, was created in her honor in 2011. France was a longtime community leader in Daytona Beach, Florida, and best known as a steadfast champion of health care for children. She assisted in the establishment of “Speediatrics” children’s care unit at Halifax Health in Daytona Beach and at Homestead Hospital in Homestead, Florida. In 2003, France was presented the Halifax Medical Center Foundation’s Humanitarian Award in recognition of her advocacy, commitment, support and advancement of numerous area community service organizations including the Volusia/Flagler chapter of the American Red Cross. She was a member of the Junior League of Daytona Beach serving on boards of numerous area community service organizations. In July 2008, she was named as an honorary co-chairperson for the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma, a project headed by longtime NASCAR team owner Richard Childress in Winston-Salem, N.C. Funeral arrangements will be forthcoming.(NASCAR)(8-30-2016)
  • NASCAR has no issue with Larson’s victory celebration: A NASCAR executive says the sanctioning body has no issues with the burnout Kyle Larson performed Sunday after scoring his first career Sprint Cup victory. Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, said Monday on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that the celebration was not viewed as excessive. O’Donnell said earlier this month on “The Morning Drive” that series officials were seeing a “trend we don’t like to see” with victory celebrations that damage the winning car. He said at the time that “you’ll probably see us sooner than later put something in place that covers us for that as you kind of head into the last quarter of the season.” But O’Donnell didn’t have an issue with Larson’s burnout after Sunday’s race at Michigan International Speedway.(in part from NBC Sports)(8-30-2016)
  • Johnson wanted to wear Earnhardt’s fire suit: Dale Earnhardt Jr. said Monday that Jimmie Johnson had asked him to borrow one of his father’s old uniforms to complete his retro look for this weekend’s NASCAR throwback weekend at Darlington Raceway. Earnhardt Jr.’s remarks came on Monday’s edition of the “Dale Jr. Download,” a 70-minute episode that he co-hosted on his Dirty Mo Radio network. Earnhardt did not provide a health update on the concussion-related symptoms that have forced him to miss the last six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, but offered an anecdote about his Hendrick Motorsports teammate, who will be running a blue-and-yellow paint scheme on his #48 Chevy that pays tribute to Earnhardt’s father and the legendary David Pearson — both NASCAR Hall of Famers. “He’s texting me, he’s like, ‘You got one of your dad’s old uniforms and all that stuff?’ ” Earnhardt said of a recent exchange with Johnson. “He wanted to actually wear it to intros, and it would fit probably. It smells like … every bit of 40 years old.” Earnhardt will be replaced by interim driver Jeff Gordon in this Sunday’s Bojangles’ Southern 500 as his recovery from concussion-related issues continues. Earnhardt said he was “real sad” he won’t be driving his own throwback paint scheme, a #88 Chevy that pays homage to Buddy Baker’s “Gray Ghost” look from the early 1980s.(NASCAR.com)(8-30-2016)
  • World Racing Group being sued by drivers: World Racing Group owes pro racecar drivers millions for ruining their reputations by falsely finding that they violated weight and tire requirements, the drivers claim in federal court. Scott Bloomquist and four other pro racecar drivers, along with team owners R & W Motorsports LLC, Best Performance Motorsports LLC, JR Motorsports LLC, Gary Satterlee and William G. Satterlee & Sons Inc., sued racetrack owner World Racing Group Inc. and its subsidiary, UMP DIRTcar Racing; and Ohio’s Eldora Speedway and its owner, Tony Stewart, in Northern New York’s federal court Wednesday.(in part from Courthouse News Service)
    AND: Eldora Speedway general manager Roger Slack reacted sharply to news that the dirt track owned by NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Tony Stewart is being sued for millions of dollars. Slack said the charges leveled by Scott Bloomquist and four other Late Model drivers, who are seeking some $16.5 million in damages, are “meritless.”(in part from FoxSports)(8-30-2016)
  • Sad News – Cliff Stewart: Mr. H. Clifton “Cliff” Stewart Sr., 91, resident of Kernersville, died August 28, 2016 at Shannon Gray Rehabilitation and Recovery Center. Mr. Stewart was born July 10, 1925 in Davidson County, a son to the late Bernie and Lue Teague Stewart. A resident of this area all his life, he graduated in 1942 from Wallburg High School and later received his Bachelor of Science from High Point College. He owned and operated Stewart Fabric Sales and Spectrum Furniture Company, as well as several different NASCAR teams. He was of the Baptist faith. In 1944 he married Eva Mae “Tommie” Stewart who preceded him in death on December 15, 2013. In addition to his wife and parents, he was also preceded by two sisters, Pauline Eller and Peggy Lydia; a brother, Loyde Stewart; a grandson, Sonny Wheeler; and a great grandson, Nicholas Sgroi. Surviving are three daughters, June Stewart of High Point, Henrietta Wheeler of Thomasville and Jackie Johnson of Asheboro; a son, Howard Stewart Jr. of High Point; nine grandchildren, Tammy Sgroi, Julie Jones, Tonia Dyer, Shannon Pope, Kara Webber, Clifton Stewart, Hannah Ridge, Bernie Stewart and Zach Johnson; and nine great grandchildren. Funeral service will be held at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday in the chapel of the Cumby Family Funeral Service in High Point with Rev. Roy Cantrell officiating. Interment will follow at Oaklawn Memorial Park Cemetery. Visitation will be from 6:00-8:00 p.m. Tuesday at the funeral home. Memorials may be made to the organization of the donor’s choice. Services under the direction of Cumby Family Funeral Services.(8-30-2016)
  • Hill joining MBM for rest of season: In a video posted to the MBM Motorsports Facebook page Tuesday afternoon, Timmy Hill announced that he will run the remainder of the NASCAR XFINITY Season with MBM Motorsports in either the #13 or #40.(8-30-2016)
  • Alli Owens driving for Obaika at Richmond: Obaika Racing welcomes Alli Owens on board. A single mother of two, Alli will be making history as the only mother to take part in one of the top three NASCAR touring series. “Becoming a mother I had to take time away from driving race cars,” said Alli, “but now that I have my girls, my sights have never be clearer on going back behind the wheel”. Obaika Racing is happy to offer Alli and Partners this opportunity and hopes for a memorable race at Richmond.(Obaika Racing)(8-30-2016)
  • Starr honoring Foyt with throwback scheme: David Starr, Massimo Motors and Striping Technology L.P. iannounce the #93 Chevrolet will be running the throwback paint scheme of the 1979 Daytona 500 car of racing legend A.J. Foyt, Jr. at Darlington Raceway on September 3rd, 2016. The 1979 Daytona 500 is a race that A.J. will always remember as the one that got away. In the infamous scuffle on the last lap between Donnie Allison and Cale Yarborough, Foyt backed off when the yellow came out, as you did in Indy racing, instead of racing full force back to the finish line. “If I hadn’t backed off, we could have finished 1st, wound up 3rd, which I guess is better than 4th,” states Foyt.
    “It’s an honor to pay tribute, not only to a true racing legend, but to my dear friend as well. I’ve idolized A.J. for as long as I can remember and it’s really cool to have the opportunity to run a throwback paint scheme of his ’79 stock car,” says Starr.(David Starr Racing), see an image of the car on the #93 team paint schemes page.(8-30-2016)
  • Ray Black, Jr honoring owner Bobby Dotter at Darlington: In the spirit of NASCAR’s Throwback celebration at Darlington Raceway, NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Ray Black Jr. revealed he will be honoring his SS Green Light team owner Bobby Dotter with a special #07 ScubaLife.com Chevrolet. The #07 Chevrolet will sport a yellow, red and green paint scheme at the 1.366-mile track, paying respect to Dotter’s race-winning 1992 #08 Jeno’s Pizza Oldsmobile. Dotter has a long, well-respected history in the racing industry, as he grew up surrounded by it since his father was a three-time ARCA champion. Dotter started his own racing career at 16-years-old in one of his father’s Late Model cars. From there, he went on to race and find success in everything from ARCA and the ASA Series to NASCAR’s Camping World Truck and Busch Grand National Series (now the NASCAR XFINITY Series). In 209 starts in the Busch Grand National Series, Dotter racked up one win, 12 Top-5 and 42-Top-10 finishes, along with four poles. Dotter ran the #08 Jeno’s Pizza Oldsmobile that Black will be representing at Darlington for just three races during his time in the Busch Grand National Series for Team R Racing Enterprise. It is one of Dotter’s most iconic schemes as he won his only race in the Busch Grand National Series with it in 1992 at New River Valley Speedway (now known as Motor Mile Speedway).(Black PR), see an image of the car on the #07 team paint schemes page.(8-30-2016)
  • Sadler’s throwback scheme released: The #1 OneMain Chevrolet that Elliott Sadler will drive this weekend at Darlington Raceway is a reflection back to 2005, the first season that the Virginia native piloted a car with the colors of the company that would soon become OneMain. Sadler drove 16 races in the #90 CitiFinancial entry, splitting time with NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Jarrett in their NASCAR Xfinity Series races while at Robert Yates Racing. There are differences between the two schemes. Sadler’s #1 OneMain Chevrolet will have its traditional white number, while the 2005 car Sadler and Jarrett drove carried #90 with red numerals. OneMain adorns the quarterpanels, while Jarrett’s name is carried above the right-side door. “Dale Jarrett has always been a mentor and great friend to me,” Sadler said. “After we became teammates at RYR, we signed CitiFinancial as a sponsor and he and I ended up splitting the schedule. It’s awesome to run those same colors this weekend and have Dale’s name on the right-side door.” (JR Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #1 team paint schemes page.(8-30-2016)
  • Curtis leaving Michigan International Speedway: International Speedway Corporation announced that Roger Curtis is leaving his position as President of Michigan International Speedway, effective immediately, to pursue new opportunities. A replacement has not been announced. Joie Chitwood, ISC Chief Operating Officer, will oversee MIS operations in the interim. “We want to thank Roger Curtis for his many years of service with ISC, and the last 10 years, specifically, as the face of Michigan International Speedway,” stated Chitwood. “We wish him much future success.”(MIS)(8-30-2016)
  • Speedway Motorsports Put Fans, Families First with $10 NASCAR Cup Series Kids’ Tickets: In conjunction with a NASCAR industry-wide effort to offer free NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and XFINITY Series tickets for children 12 and under next season, Speedway Motorsports, Inc. announced a company-wide Fans First initiative Monday to price select children’s tickets at just $10 each to Cup Series events at its eight premier speedways beginning in 2017. “Coming to the races should be about fun, not finances,” said Speedway Motorsports’ President and Chief Executive Officer Marcus Smith. “Now a parent can get his or her child through the gates for an entire weekend of NASCAR events – including pole night, a Camping World Truck or XFINITY Series race and a Cup Series race – for just $10. This is one of the best, if not THE best, family values in all professional sports. NASCAR fans have passed down their passion for motorsports from generation to generation for decades, and through this new Fans First initiative, we’ll continue that legacy by introducing young fans to the sport and engaging them for years to come.” With an adult ticket purchase, fans can buy up to two $10 tickets for children ages 12 and under to that same event in select seating sections. This offer is available at all of the 13 Cup Series events shown below next season. Tickets for many of Speedway Motorsports’ 2017 events are already on sale.(CMS/SMI)(8-30-2016)
  • Richard Petty joins Chicagoland’s Legends Club: Chicagoland Speedway announced that Richard Petty will be inducted into the Legends Club this September as part of an action-packed four-day racing weekend for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400, the first race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup kickoff. Legends Club has featured some of the most storied figures, families and personalities in the sport. This climate-controlled viewing suite offers an intimate setting with an all-inclusive package of beer and wine, plus two meals per day. Since its inception, the Legends Club has honored and recognized some of the most notable drivers in the sport, including Rusty Wallace, Richard Childress, Fred Lorenza, Dale Jarrett and Brett Bodine. On Saturday, Sept. 17 Legends Club will induct Petty, as he accepts his position in Chicagoland Speedway’s history books. Tickets can be purchased online at ChicagolandSpeedway.com, by calling 888-629-RACE, through the Chicagoland Speedway mobile app, or by visiting the Chicagoland Speedway Administrative office.(PR)(8-30-2016)


    News from August 29, 2016


     

  • Michigan Race and Commercial Breakdown: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday’s race. Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 2:00 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 4:45 PM (all times are EDT). NBCSN was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 101
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 44
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 80
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 40
    Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 21
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 17
    Number of times NBCSN utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 4
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 2:00 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 4:45 PM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 165
    Minutes of race broadcast: 131
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 34
    Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 10
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of ‘mystery cautions’ (debris not shown): 0; One debris caution occurred during commercial
    Total race brdcst time 131 Total comm. brdcst time 34
    See past races, more info on the commercials with links at CawsnJaws.com.(8-29-2016)
  • Larson becomes the 27th driver to win in all three series: with Kyle Larson’s win in the Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International on Sunday, August 28, 2016, he becomes the 27th driver to have at least one win in all three National Series (Sprint Cup, XFINITY and Camping World Truck). Larson has 1 win in Sprint Cup, 4 wins in the XFINITY Series and two in the Camping World Truck Series. Larson is the 7th driver to score a win in the same season across NASCAR’s three national series having won 1 Cup races, 1 XFINITY race and one Truck Series race in 2016. See more on Jayski.com’s NASCAR Wins in all three National Series page for more.(8-29-2016)
  • Throwback schemes at Darlington: 36 teams have unveiled their throwback paint schemes for the Bojangles’ Southern 500: #1-Jamie McMurray, #2-Brad Keselowski, #3-Austin Dillon, #4-Kevin Harvick, #5-Kasey Kahne, #6-Trevor Bayne, #7-Regan Snith, #10-Danica Patrick, #11-Denny Hamlin, #13-Casey Mears, #14-Tony Stewart, #15-Clint Bowyer, #16-Greg Biffle, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #18-Kyle Busch, #19-Carl Edwards, #20-Matt Kenseth, #21-Ryan Blaney, #22-Joey Logano, #23-David Ragan, #24-Chase Elliott, #27-Paul Menard, #31-Ryan Newman, #32-Jeffrey Earnhardt, #34-Chris Buscher, #38-Landon Cassill, #41-Kurt Busch, #42-Kyle Larson, #43-Aric Almirola, #46-Michael Annett, #47-AJ Allmendinger, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #78-Martin Truex Jr., #83-Matt DiBenedetto, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #95-Michael McDowell.
    Images of the schemes can be seen on Jayski.com’s Darlington Throwback paint schemes page.
  • Driver wins before age 25: 73 of 2,485 (2.9%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races for which the winner’s age is known have been won by drivers under 25:
    1. Kyle Busch, 17 [turned 25 the day after his 17th win on May 2, 2010]
    2. Jeff Gordon, 15
    3. Joey Logano, 9
    4. Kurt Busch, 7
    (tie) Richard Petty, 7
    6. Junior Johnson, 5
    Tied with one each (13): Trevor Bayne, Chris Buescher, Bob Burdick, Bobby Hillin Jr., Parnelli Jones, John Kieper, Terry Labonte, Kyle Larson, Ryan Newman, Bill Rexford, Fireball Roberts, Donald Thomas, Brian Vickers.(8-28-2016)
  • Larson the first graduate of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity to win Cup race: #42-Kyle Larson won Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway to become the first graduate of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity and the NASCAR Next programs to win at the sanctioning body’s top level. Larson, the 24-year-old Elk Grove, California, native of Japanese-American heritage, has already won in the NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. His first win came in 2013 at Rockingham Speedway in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He has since won another NASCAR Camping World Truck race, as well as four NASCAR XFINITY Series races. The win at Michigan was the latest in a long line of ‘firsts’ accomplished by Larson in his young career. Among the highlights:
    – In 2014, Larson became the first NASCAR D4D and NASCAR Next product to win a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole (Pocono Raceway), as well as the first to win the Sunoco Rookie of the Year.
    – In 2013, he became the first NASCAR D4D graduate to win the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award in the NASCAR XFINITY Series.
    – Larson previously became the first NASCAR D4D competitor to win a NASCAR Touring Series championship. Driving for Rev Racing, Larson won the 2012 NASCAR K&N; Pro Series East title and the Sunoco Rookie of the Year.
    On Sunday, the Chip Ganassi Racing driver won the Pure Michigan 400, driving the #42 Chevy, leading a race-high 41 laps in his 99th career start. With the win, Larson clinches a spot in NASCAR’s playoffs – the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
    NASCAR Next is an industry-wide initiative designed to spotlight to best and brightest rising young stars in racing. NASCAR Drive for Diversity, operated by Rev Racing, is an academy-style development program for female and multicultural drivers and crew members who have the potential and determination to succeed at the highest levels of NASCAR. Larson raced under both banners in 2012.(NASCAR)(8-29-2016)
  • Harmon’s Darlington throwback a tribute to Neil Bonnett: Mike Harmon is giving tribute to his former good friend and neighbor, Neil Bonnett. Mike is a Jr member of the Alabama gang growing up only 15 minutes from Hueytown, AL. Last year Mike drove the Davey Allison tribute car. It’s only fitting that this year Mike and Bobby Ruese are running the the WCIPARTS.COM car in honor of Neil Bonnett. Mike was very close to all the Alabama Gang with Red Farmer being his crew chief early in Mike’s NASCAR Busch series career. But he was especially close to Neil. Mike said “Neil was a mentor to me and I was a mentor to his son David, who also raced. I want to run this car in Neil’s memory. He was a heck of a race car driver and a even better person. I still miss him”. We’re also sad to say that Neil’s mother passed away last week. But we hope this tribute lets Neil’s wife Susan and their children David and Krista know that he is still in our hearts.”(Mike Harmon Racing), see an image of the car on the #74 team paint schemes page.(8-29-2016)
  • Sam Bass to “Ride with Reed” at Darlington: NASCAR’s First Officially Licensed Artist and Diabetes Advocate Sam Bass will ‘ride’ with Roush Fenway Racing driver Ryan Reed this weekend at Darlington Raceway. The Concord, N.C. resident will have his name featured on a decal above the passenger-side window on the #16 Lilly Diabetes/American Diabetes Association Ford Mustang. Bass was diagnosed with diabetes more than 20 years ago and has had his share of complications relating to the disease. In 2008, he lost the lower portion of his left leg and since has had three bouts of sepsis, a serious blood infection that can lead to death. Today, Bass knows the importance of working with his doctors, eating right and staying as active as possible to avoid complications and lead a normal life. Bass has shared his story of diagnosis at several American Diabetes Association events, including the Association’s 2014 Father of the Year Awards in Charlotte. This Friday at Darlington Raceway, Bass will serve a special role with the #16 team as he will do a live painting of Lilly Diabetes’ 140th Anniversary logo on the decklid of the car that Reed will race on Saturday afternoon. Reed’s Darlington paint scheme is an adaption Bobby Allison’s 1975 ‘Matador’ scheme, originally run by Penske Racing, which Bass helped adjust to fit Reed’s current Ford Mustang.(Roush Fenway Racing)(8-29-2016)
  • NHTSA partners with Chicagoland for NXS race entitlement: Chicagoland Speedway announced the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as the title sponsor for its NASCAR XFINITY Series Drive for Safety 300 on Saturday, Sept. 17. The NHTSA was established in 1970 as part of the Highway Safety Act. Its sole mission focuses on achieving high standards of excellence in motor vehicle and highway safety. Thus, there is no more perfect pair than NHTSA and NASCAR. In partnership with NASCAR, NHTSA has focused on promoting life-saving highway safety and vehicle safety messages with their Drive for Safety initiative. The program highlights topics including distracted driving, seat belts, tire safety, five-star crash ratings and recalls throughout the 2016 NASCAR season.(Chicagoland Speedway)(8-29-2016)
  • Sieg names 3 race sponsor; honoring Dale Jarrett at Darlington: RSS Racing announces that Tri County Landscape will return as a primary sponsor for three more races in 2016 starting at Darlington Raceway. In addition to Darlington, TCL will be on the #39 car at Richmond and Charlotte. At Darlington, the team will run a special throwback paint scheme resembling the famous colors that Dale Jarrett ran in the late 90s. Ryan Sieg commented, “I’m thrilled to have TCL back for three more races and I’m honored to drive this special color scheme at Darlington. Growing up, our family always stayed at the same condo in Daytona as Robert Yates, Dale Jarrett, and their team. He was always one of my favorites and I think I even got tossed in the pool by DJ a few times one year.” Sieg continues to hold down the 12th spot in points with three races left before the Chase begins for XFINITY Series.(RSS Racing), see an image of the car on the #39 team paint schemes page.(8-29-2016)
  • Dover partners with “Citizen Soldier” film as entitlement sponsor for Oct. 2 Cup race: “Citizen Soldier,” a feature film using real footage that follows an Oklahoma National Guard unit during its deployment to Afghanistan will be the entitlement sponsor for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Dover International Speedway on Sunday, Oct. 2. The “Citizen Soldier 400” NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is the first elimination race in the 16-driver 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship playoffs. Four drivers will see their championship dreams dashed after 400 grueling laps around the Monster Mile. The “Citizen Soldier 400” NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is the centerpiece of the Sept. 30-Oct. 2 NASCAR tripleheader weekend, which also includes free concerts, activities and experiences within our FanZone and Monster Mile Youth Nation areas, an interactive USO Military Village display, military flyovers, autograph sessions, fireworks and more. The Sept. 30-Oct. 2 NASCAR weekend also includes the NASCAR K&N; Pro Series East race on Friday, Sept. 30, and the “Drive Sober 200” presented by the Delaware Office of Highway Safety NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, Oct. 1. For tickets or more information, call (800) 441-RACE or visit DoverSpeedway.com.(Dover International Speedway)(8-29-2016)


    News from August 28, 2016


     

  • Larson wins Michigan: #42-Kyle Larson won the Pure Michigan Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway for his 1st win of the season, 1st win at Michigan and FIRST career win. Larson led a race high 41 of 200 laps to win his first race.
    The victory came in Larson’s 99th start in the series, long after most observers expected Larson to record his first win. It also broke a 99-race drought for Chip Ganassi Racing, dating to Jamie McMurray’s victory at Talladega in October 2013. It was also the first win for car #42 since Juan Pablo Montoya won Watkins Glen in August 2010.
    #24-Elliott (ties his career best finish) finished 2nd followed by #2-Keselowski, #21-Blaney, #4-Harvick, #48-Johnson, #19-Edwards, #1-McMurray, #11-Hamlin and #22-Logano.
    #14-Tony Stewart clinched a position in the top 30 in the standings and therefore a berth in the Chase with his 21st-place finish.
    #34-Chris Buescher lost a cylinder early in the race, finished 35th, and held onto a seven-point lead over #23-David Ragan for the 30th spot in the standings.
    Buescher must remain in the top 30 after the next two races to parlay his Pocono victory into a Chase berth.
    The win marked the first time a graduate of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity and NASCAR Next programs has reached Victory Lane in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
    It is the first time in NASCAR history that first time winners in each of the three National series on the same weekend: Larson at Michigan in the Cup series. Michael McDowell at Road America in the XFINITY Series and Brian Moffitt winning the Michigan Truck Series race.
    There were 20 lead changes among 13 drivers and 4 cautions for 17 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 162.730 mph.
    See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and more [NOTE: money/winnings are no longer reported] at:
    Unofficial Race Results page (pdf)
    Lap Summary Report (pdf)
    Penalty Report (pdf)
    Pit Stop Times (pdf)
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Michigan Race & Points Report (pdf).(8-28-2016)
  • Brad Keselowski’s car fails postrace inspection at MIS: #2-Brad Keselowski, who finished 3rd, had his car fail postrace measurements following the Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway. The typical penalty for the violation has been a 15-point deduction for the driver and a $25,000 fine to the crew chief, but NASCAR won’t comment on potential penalties until they are announced, which typically is the Wednesday following a race. The 15-point penalty is insignificant to Keselowski, who sits second in the standings by 50 points and whose four wins this year have him locked into NASCAR’s postseason Chase for the Sprint Cup. The #2 Ford failed the inspection station that measures tire camber, axle housing, alignment, rocker panels and the main frame rail. All cars go through that inspection station prior to the race. The top-five cars plus any other cars chosen by NASCAR also go through it after the race.(ESPN)(8-28-2016)
  • Race Fast Facts – Michigan International Speedway:
    #42-Kyle Larson won the 47th Annual Pure Michigan 400 , his first victory in 99 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his first victory and eighth top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his third top-10 finish in six races at Michigan International Speedway.
    Larson is the first graduate of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity and NASCAR Next programs to win a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.
    With the victory, Larson now cliches a spot in the 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
    Chip Ganassi Racing ends a wins drought of 99 races, extending back to Jamie McMurray’s win on October 20, 2013 at Talladega.
    #24-Chase Elliott (second) posted his second top-10 finish in two races at Michigan International Speedway. It is his 12th top-10 finish in 2016.
    #2-Brad Keselowski (third) posted his eighth top-10 finish in 15 races at Michigan International Speedway.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(8-28-2016)
  • 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup CHASE Standings:
    [after Michigan, race 24 of 36, 16 drivers for the Chase]
    Set by most wins, then by points standing
    1) #2-Keselowski [4 wins], 2nd in points
    2) #18-Busch [4], 6th
    3) #4-Harvick [2], 1st
    4) #19-Edwards [2], 3rd
    5) #11-Hamlin [2], 7th
    6) #48-Johnson [2], 9th
    7) #20-Kenseth [2], 10th
    8) #41-Busch [1], 4th
    9) #22-Logano [1], 5th
    10) #78-Truex, Jr. [1], 8th
    11) #42-Larson [1], 15th
    12) #14-Stewart [1], 26th
    13) #34-Buescher [1], 30th
    no wins, in by points standings
    14) #24-Elliott, 11th in points, 27 pts ahead of 17th
    15) #3-Dillon, 12th, +21
    16) #1-McMurray, 13th, +15
    no wins, not in the Chase
    17) #31-Newman, 14th, -15 out of 16th
    18) #5-Kahne, 16th, -52
    19) #6-Bayne, 17th, -58
    20) #21-Blaney, 18th, -71pts
    (8-28-2016)
  • 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Driver Points (not CHASE) Standings:
    [after Michigan, race 24 of 36]
    1) #4-Harvick [2 wins], 799
    2) #2-Keselowski [4], 774, -25
    3) #19-Edwards [2], 724, -75
    4) #41-Busch [1], 721, -78
    5) #22-Logano [1], 716, -83
    6) #18-Busch [4], 696, -103
    7) #11-Hamlin [2], 691, -108
    8) #78-Truex Jr. [1], 652, -147
    9) #48-Johnson [2], 648, -151
    10) #20-Kenseth [2], 633, -166
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and
    Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf)
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Michigan Race & Points Report (pdf).
  • Lucky Dogs – Who got a lap back on each caution at Michigan: (and their finish)
    Caution 1: #30-Wise, 38th
    Caution 2: #32-Earnhardt, 37th
    Caution 3: #16-Biffle, 11th
    Caution 4: #27-Menard, 18th
    (8-28-2016)
  • Michigan Sprint Cup Series Pre-Race Schedule for Sunday, August 28: (eastern time)
    12:00 pm: NSCS Driver/Crew Chief Meeting
    1:30:00 pm: NSCS Drivers Introductions
    1:58:15 pm: Canadian Anthem by MIS’ Own, Lisa Bascom
    2:00:00 pm: Presentation of Colors Michigan State Police
    2:00:20 pm: Invocation by Fr. Geoff Rose
    2:01:00 pm: National Anthem by US Army A Capella Chorus
    2:02:10 pm: Flyover: (2) F-16s, 180th Fighter Wing, Ohio Air National Guard
    2:07:10 pm: Command to Start Engines by Jeff Blashill, Detroit Red Wings Head Coach
    followed by another flyover by Breitling Jet Team
    2:15:40 pm: Start (green flag) of the Pure Michigan 400
    eastern time (NASCAR.com)
  • Michigan Race Notes & Facts:
    � There have been 94 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Michigan International Speedway since the first race there in 1969. Other than 1973, which had just one race, there have been two races each season since 1969.
    � Eight different manufacturers have won in the NSCS at Michigan; led by Ford with 35 victories; followed by Chevrolet with 23, Mercury (12), Dodge (nine), Toyota (five), Buick (four) Pontiac (four) and Oldsmobile (two).
    � Roush Fenway Racing has the most wins at Michigan in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with 13: Mark Martin (four), Greg Biffle (four), Carl Edwards (two), Matt Kenseth (two) and Kurt Busch (one).
    � Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory (MOV) in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Michigan International Speedway was the June 10, 2001 race won by Jeff Gordon over Ricky Rudd with a MOV of 0.085 second.
    � There have been two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races resulting with a green-white-checkered finish at Michigan International Speedway (Scheduled No. of Laps/Actual No. of Laps): fall of 2011 (200/203); and fall of 2012 (200/201).
    � Five of the 94 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Michigan International Speedway have been shortened due to weather conditions; the most recent was the event on 6/14/2015.
    (NASCAR)
  • How Kenseth helped John Krasinski land role of ‘Jim’ on ‘The Office’: It’s nearly impossible to think an actor besides John Krasinski playing the role of ‘Jim Halpert’ on the American version of “The Office,” but it may not have happened without the help of Matt Kenseth. Back in 2002 — a full three years before the NBC premiere of inarguably the greatest comedy series of all time, in my opinion, at least — a fresh-faced Krasinski appeared in a commercial with Kenseth that caught the eye of future “Office” executive producer, Greg Daniels. The back-and-forth dialogue between last fall’s grand marshal at Texas Motor Speedway and Kenseth (more back than forth, knowing the stoic Joe Gibbs Racing driver) and wild antics by the now-36-year-old led to an audition and before long, “Jim” was born.(see full article at NASCAR.com)(8-28-2016)
  • Hamlin’s Darlington throwback scheme unveiled: Joe Gibbs Racing unveiled #11-Denny Hamlin’s throwback scheme for Darlington on Wednesday afternoon. The SportClips Toyota is a throwback to Darrell Waltrip’s #11 1984 race car design.(8-10-2016), see an image of the car on the #11 team paint schemes page.(8-10-2016)
    AND – Hamlin & Sport Clips Honor Military at Ft. Bragg: Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) driver Denny Hamlin, and long-time partner Sport Clips, officially unveiled the #11 Sport Clips Toyota Camry “Throwback” edition this past week at the Ft. Bragg Airborne & Special Operations Museum. The paint scheme is modeled after the #11 car driven by NASCAR Hall-of-Famer Darrell Waltrip in the 1980’s. The special throwback edition will debut at Darlington Raceway on Labor Day weekend with Hamlin in the #18 Sport Clips Camry in Saturday’s VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200, as well as the #11 Sport Clips Camry in the Southern 500 on Sunday.(Joe Gibbs Racing)(8-28-2016)
  • Logano going for Michigan sweep: #22-Joey Logano will go for the sweep of Michigan after winning the June race at the two-mile track from the pole. Logano has seven straight top-10 finishes there, including two wins. During that streak, Logano has led the most laps in three races. For his career, Logano claims two wins, four top fives, 10 top 10s and an average finish of 12.8 at MIS. (NASCAR)(8-28-2016)
  • Keselowski Tries For First Win In Home State: #2-Brad Keselowski, a Rochester Hills, Michigan native, attempts to become the eighth active driver to win a race in his home state in Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400. The seven active drivers with wins in their home states are: Jimmie Johnson (7 victories/California), Denny Hamlin (7/Virginia), Tony Stewart (2/Indiana), Aric Almirola (1/Florida), Kyle Busch (1/Nevada), Kevin Harvick (1/California) and Ryan Newman (1/Indiana). Keselowski’s best finish at MIS was a runner-up showing in August of 2012. Overall, he has four top fives, seven top 10s and a 13.0 average finish in 14 Michigan starts. Keselowski has finished in the top 10 in his last five races at MIS, including a fourth-place showing in June. He does have two NASCAR XFINITY Series wins at Michigan, in 2009-2010.(NASCAR)(8-28-2016)
  • Playoff Spots Dwindling With Three Regular Season Races Remaining: Last weekend’s race at Bristol Motor Speedway changed everything as the resulting Chase Grid looks very different now than it did prior to Bristol.
    – #34-Chris Buescher finished fifth, which catapulted him into the top 30 by 13 points – thereby placing him firmly in Chase contention for the first time since his victory at Pocono. All 12 race winners are now on the Chase Grid.
    – Buescher’s finish, paired with #42-Kyle Larson’s 24th-place run, pushed Larson off the Grid.
    – #31-Ryan Newman finished 28th, which dropped him three spots in the standings, and likewise, the Chase Grid. He’s now 16th on the Grid, and if there’s a new winner in the next three races, he’s in danger of missing the playoffs.
    – #3-Austin Dillon (4th) and #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (2nd) both turned in top fives, which either solidified their Chase standing (Dillon) or bolstered their chances (Stenhouse).
    One winless driver, in particular, could threaten at Michigan International Speedway: #16-Greg Biffle. For one, Biffle’s Roush Fenway Racing team leads all organization in wins at Michigan, with 13. Secondly, Biffle boasts the Michigan wins lead among active drivers with four.(NASCAR)(8-28-2016)
  • APC sponsoring Smith at MIS: Regan Smith and the #7 Tommy Baldwin Racing team is headed back to the Michigan International Speedway (MIS) this weekend for the Pure Michigan 400. Smith will be sponsored by Advanced Patient Care LLC, a hands-on clinical care company dedicated to making the transition from hospital to home seamless and successful. Toy State will be an associate sponsor.(Tommy Baldwin Racing)(8-28-2016)
  • Harvick leads in 2nd place finishes since 2014: Since the start of the 2014 season #4-Kevin Harvick has 22 second-place finishes – more than double the next-closest driver in the same period: #2-Brad Keselowski has 10.(USA Today), Harvick has 47 career 2nd place finishes, 11th all time. Richard Petty is the all-time leader with 157 second place finishes. See the list on the All-time winners page (8-28-2016)
  • Bristol XFINITY TV Ratings: NASCAR Xfinity Series racing from Bristol had a 0.8 final rating and 1.2 million viewers on USA Network last Friday, down 6% in viewership from last year on NBCSN (1.3M) and down 20% and 28%, respectively, from 2014 on ESPN (1.0, 1.6M). Viewership declined for all three Xfinity Series races during the Olympics.(Sports Media Watch)(8-28-2016)


    News from August 27, 2016


     

  • Race Coverage of the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is scheduled for Sunday, August 28, 2016.
    Television (TV): NBCSN at 2:00 pm/et; Pre-Race show at 1:00 pm/et; green flag approx. 2:18pm/et
    RadioMotor Racing Network (MRN) and Sirius XM Satellite NASCAR Radio 90
    Live updates on JAYSKI.com Twitter
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs: Monday, August 29 at 3:00pm/et on NBCSN
  • Happy Hour practice for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is over, after about 25 minutes of practice before lightning ended it, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #11-Hamlin 197.878
    #24-Elliott 197.786
    #48-Johnson 197.694
    #5-Kahne 197.455
    #2-Keselowski 197.412
    Best 10 consecutive lap ave (of 9 drivers) #42-Larson 196.346
    slowest: #32-Earnhardt 186.960 & #98-Whitt 188.403
    no speed: #55-Sorenson
    most laps run: #42-Larson, 22; #1-McMurray, 21.
    notes: #11-Hamlin got loose and spun off turn 4, going thru the infield grass, doing some damage to the car, but the team plans to fix the car.
    See fastest speeds, laps run and best 10 consecutive lap ave on the Michigan Happy Hour Practice speeds page (pdf).(8-27-2016)
  • First Saturday practice for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is over, after 55 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #14-Stewart 202.122
    #21-Blaney 201.427
    #24-Elliott 201.196
    #41-Busch 201.089
    #42-Larson 200.932
    Best 10 consecutive lap ave (of 11 drivers) #18-Busch 199.713
    slowest: #32-Earnhardt 188.843 & #55-Sorenson 189.788
    most laps run: #88-Bowman, 38; #24-Elliott, 33.
    notes: Happy Hour (final) practice is scheduled for 11:30am-12:20pm/et, TV=CNBC
    See fastest speeds, laps run and best 10 consecutive lap ave on the Michigan Practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(8-27-2016)
  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway have been made.
    With the field downsized to 40 cars, three pit stalls (41,42,43) have been eliminated, are not in play and don’t count towards driving through more than three pit boxes.
    Pole sitter #22-Logano took pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #48-Johnson, Jr. took pit stall 40, the final pit stall.
    #11-Hamlin, who starts 3rd took the 23rd pit stall, the first stall with an opening in front of it (not counting #1 stall).
    The final pit stall (40th) was taken by #48-Johnson, starts 2nd.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on Jayski.com’s Pit Stall Selection chart.
  • Michigan Driver Notes & Facts:
    � 381 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway; 280 in more than one.
    � Bill Elliott leads the series in starts at Michigan with 61. Matt Kenseth leads all active drivers with 33.
    � A total of 38 drivers have made their first series start at Michigan International Speedway.
    � Two active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers have posted their first career start at Michigan International Speedway: Carl Edwards (8/22/2004) and Landon Cassill (6/13/2010).
    � 36 different NSCS drivers have won at Michigan International Speedway, led by David Pearson with nine wins; Greg Biffle leads all active drivers with four; followed by Kurt Busch and Matt Kenseth with three each.
    � Eight drivers have posted consecutive wins at Michigan International Speedway, including four consecutive by Bill Elliott (1985 sweep and 1986 sweep).
    � Greg Biffle (2004-2005 and 2012-2013) and Ryan Newman (2003-2004) are the only two active drivers to win consecutive series races at Michigan.
    � All active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winners at Michigan International Speedway participated in at least one or more races before visiting Victory Lane. Tony Stewart won at Michigan in his third appearance, the fewest previous starts among the active NSCS winners.
    � Among the active NSCS Michigan winners Kevin Harvick (19), Kyle Busch (13) and Joey Logano (10) all made 10 or more attempts before their first win.
    � Jeff Gordon leads the series in runner-up finishes at Michigan with eight; followed by Darrell Waltrip with seven and Kevin Harvick with six.
    � NASCAR Hall of Famer Cale Yarborough leads the series in top-five finishes at Michigan with 21; Matt Kenseth leads all active drivers with 14.
    � Mark Martin leads the series in top-10 finishes at Michigan with 31. Tony Stewart leads all active drivers with 21.
    � Carl Edwards leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average finishing position at Michigan with a 9.500.
    � Jamie McMurray leads the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Michigan without visiting Victory Lane at 27; followed by Casey Mears at 26.
    � Jimmie Johnson leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in laps led at Michigan with 650 laps led in 29 starts.
    � Four female drivers have competed at Michigan International Speedway in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Janet Guthrie, Robin McCall, Shawna Robinson and Danica Patrick. Of the four female drivers to compete at Michigan, Guthrie has the best finish (10th). (NASCAR)
  • Chase-clinching scenario for Michigan: With three races remaining in the regular season, 10 drivers have clinched a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, assuming each driver starts the remaining races. The 10 clinchers: Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Kevin Harvick, Kurt Busch, Joey Logano, Martin Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin. Everyone who has a win this season is locked in — except for Tony Stewart and Chris Buescher, both of whom have yet to clinch a top-30 spot. Stewart can clinch a top 30 spot at Michigan with some help as he must be 91 points ahead of the 31st position in the standings. A number of drivers who currently have no wins can clinch this weekend, but only if they win the Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway. Winless drivers in the standings from Austin Dillon all the way to Aric Almirola could lock in a spot with a victory. See the Sprint Cup standings here.(NASCAR.com)(8-27-2016)
  • Liberty Mutual Debuting New NASCAR Deal To Promote Spotters: Liberty Mutual this weekend is debuting a unique content sponsorship in NASCAR entitled “Spotter Coverage” based around the notion of spotters helping their drivers worry less. At select ISC and SMI races remaining on the 2016 schedule, the Massachusetts-based insurer will sponsor spotter stands. The deal starts at Michigan International Speedway and also has an accompanying media buy on NBC Sports. Spotter stands at participating tracks will have track-facing signage that reads, “Helping Drivers Worry Less.”(Sports Business Daily)(8-27-2016)
  • Keselowski takes lap at MIS in 1901 replica Ford race car: Before taking laps at 200-plus mph in his #2 Miller Lite Ford, Brad Keselowski took a lap around Michigan International Speedway in an exact replica of Henry Ford’s 1901 race car. The actual car, nicknamed “Sweepstakes,” sits in the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn. But the replica Keselowski drove at MIS Friday, Aug. 25, was built using its same specifications and pieces, right down to the wheels and tires. “Back then, it was about, can you just run?” said Keselowski, a Rochester Hills native. “The race that car won, there were 40 entries and only two finished. The others all blew up, broke down, had all kinds of issues. That’s a good indication of how motorsports have changed.” Keselowski was decked out in a suit, goggles, hat and bow tie for the drive. He thinks he got the car up to 50 or 60 mph. “That car was interesting and fun to drive,” he said. “A lot of things we probably take a little bit for granted now as far as amenities are concerned.”
    Ford drove “Sweepstakes” in his first and last race as a driver. He finished first in a 10-mile race on Oct. 10, 1901, at a horse-racing track in Grosse Pointe. The win helped Ford gain financial support for the creation of the Ford Motor Co. in 1903. After Keselowski drove the 2,430-pound car into victory lane, MIS President Roger Curtis handed him the Michigan Heritage Trophy, which goes to the winning manufacturer in the MIS Sprint Cup Series races.(Michigan Live)(8-27-2017)
  • Bowman grateful for a chance to drive: Though he would prefer to be in a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car under other circumstances, Alex Bowman hopes to make the most of his second chance to drive the #88 Chevy of Dale Earnhardt Jr., who is still awaiting medical clearance after suffering concussion-like symptoms that have kept him out of the car. Bowman subbed for Earnhardt at New Hampshire in July, running in the top 10 for much of the race, before a crash relegated him to 26th. Jeff Gordon took over the seat for the next four races, but a scheduling conflict kept Gordon out of the car at Michigan and gave Bowman his second shot. “Honestly, for me being as close of friends as I am with Dale, I have just been hoping he gets to feeling better more than anything,” Bowman said Friday at Michigan. “Obviously, I’m more than happy to fill in whenever I can. New Hampshire was a lot of fun. Obviously, we ran a lot better than we finished. I hated that the race team didn’t get the finish they deserved. Everybody at Hendrick Motorsports and Chevy and everybody-they have been so welcoming and easy to work with. It’s just been fun. Off the truck today we were really fast (14th in opening practice) and didn’t really get the qualifying run speed that we really wanted. But I feel like we have a good shot at it this weekend. It’s just so much fun to be able to come to a (Sprint) Cup race and be able to say that. I’m just really enjoying it and trying to make the most out of it.”(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-27-2016)
  • Smithfield Donates more than 25,000 lbs to Food Bank: Smithfield’s Helping Hungry Homes truck pulled into Jackson (MI) Friday morning for the 24th stop on the 2016 nationwide hunger-relief tour to donate more than 25,000 pounds of protein to the Food Bank of South Central Michigan. The donation will provide more than 100,000 servings and help the Food Bank continue to provide meals to the South Central Michigan community, where one in six people suffers from hunger. Smithfield partnered with Meijer and Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) to present the donation during an event at the Jackson Meijer, 3333 E. Michigan Ave. Speakers discussed the importance of donations like these in South Central Michigan. “The King” of racing, Richard Petty, who has partnered with the Smithfield Helping Hungry Homes program to donate thousands of pounds of protein over recent years, was present to discuss the importance of these donations from Smithfield and to raise awareness about the necessity of providing assistance to our neighbors in need.(RPM)(8-27-2016)
  • Darlington XFINITY Entry List: There are 36 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200 at Darlington Raceway. A few notes:
    Carl Long is entered in the #13;
    Todd Peck will drive the #15;
    Denny Hamlin will drive the #18 for Joe Gibbs;
    Ryan Blaney returns to the Penske #22;
    Ryan Ellis is entered in the Rick Ware #25;
    Kevin Harvick will be in the #88 for JR Motorsports.
    Not currently listed, but expected to be added: #70-Derrike Cope, #97-TBA.(8-27-2015)
    See the complete list on the Darlington Raceway entry list page.
  • Michael McDowell wins XFINITY race at Road America: #2-Michael McDowell won the Road America 180 at Road America. It is his 1st XFINITY Series win and his first win in any NASCAR national series. He led 24 of the 48 laps. #62-Brendan Gaughan finished second, followed by #48-Brennan Poole, #19-Daniel Suarez, #16-Ryan Reed, #7-Justin Allgaier, polesitter #22-Alex Tagliani, #1-Elliott Sadler, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., and #44-J.J. Yeley.
    The race ended after the first attempt at NASCAR Overtime.
    There were 6 cautions for 13 laps and 6 lead changes among 4 leaders.
    The average speed was 74.573mph.
    Complete results are on the Road America race results page (pdf).
    (8-27-2016)
  • Road America XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Michael McDowell(i) won the 7th Annual Road America 180 Fired Up by Johnsonville, his first victory in 94 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his first victory and second top-10 finish in five races at Road America.
    Brendan Gaughan (second) posted his third top-10 finish in five races at Road America. It is his 12th top-10 finish in 2016.
    Brennan Poole (third) posted his first top-10 finish in his first start at Road America.
    Brennan Poole (third) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 47 points over Daniel Suarez.
    Richard Childress Racing has won the last three consecutive races at Road America – McDowell (2016), Paul Menard (2015) and Brendan Gaughan (2014).
    Michael McDowell is the third first-time winner of the 2016 NASCAR XFINITY Series season joining Daniel Suarez (Michigan) and Justin Marks (Mid-Ohio).
    Michael McDowell is the fourth first-time NASCAR XFINITY Series winner at Road America joining Nelson Piquet Jr. (2012), AJ Allmendinger (2013) and Brendan Gaughan (2014).
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-6-2016)
  • XFINITY Driver standings following Road America:
    [12 drivers qualify for the XFINITY Series Chase. 3 more races until the Chase cutoff.]
    1) #1-Elliott Sadler [1 win], 770
    2) #19-Daniel Suarez [1 win], 723, -47
    3) #7-Justin Allgaier, 720, -50
    4) #3-Ty Dillon, 713, -57
    5) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 707, -63
    6) #20-Erik Jones [3 wins], 678, -92
    7) #48-Brennan Poole, 669, -101
    8) #33-Brandon Jones, 652, -118
    9) #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., 606, -164
    10) #16-Ryan Reed, 658, -202
    11) #11-Blake Koch, 552, -248
    12) #39-Ryan Sieg, 514, -256
    Currently outside the Chase:
    13) #28-Dakoda Armstrong, 499, -271, -15 pts out of 12th
    14) #51-Jeremy Clements, 481, -289, -33
    15) #4-Ross Chastain, 480, -290, -34
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(8-27-2016)
  • Truck Series Entry List: There are 32 trucks on the preliminary entry list for next Sunday’s Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park. A few notes:
    Cody Ware is in the #07;
    Austin Cindric is in the #2;
    Justin Haley is in the #32;
    Wayne Edwards is in the #49;
    Gary Klutt is in the #51;
    Norm Benning is in the #63;
    Camden Murphy is in the #71;
    (8-27-2016)
    See the complete list on the Canada entry list page.
  • Moffitt wins Truck Series Race at Michigan: #11-Brett Moffitt won the Careers for Veterans 200 at Michigan International Speedway on Saturday, after making a three-wide pass for the lead on the last lap. #17-Timothy Peters finished second, followed by #19-Daniel Hemric, #9-William Byron, #13-Cameron Hayley, #41-Ben Rhodes, #88-Matt Crafton, #24-Grant Enfinger, #21-Johnny Sauter, and #02-Tyler Young.
    Pole sitter #05-John Wes Townley suffered a flat tire early in the race but finished 12th.
    There were seven cautions for 36 laps and 17 lead changes among 8 leaders.
    The average speed was 111.732mph.
    Complete results are on the Michiganrace results page (pdf).
    (8-27-2016)
  • Michigan Race Fast Facts:
    Brett Moffitt won the 17th Annual Careers for Veterans 200 Presented by The Cooper Standard Foundation & Brad Keselowski’s CheckeredFlag Foundation, his first victory in six NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
    This is his third top-10 finish in 2016. He finished third (Pocono) and second (Bristol) in the previous two races.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in two races at Michigan International Speedway.
    Timothy Peters (second) posted his seventh top-10 finish in ten races at Michigan International Speedway. It is his ninth top-10 finish in 2016.
    Daniel Hemric (third) posted his second top-10 finish in two races at Michigan International Speedway.
    William Byron (fourth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    William Byron # leads the point standings by 36 points over Daniel Hemric.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(8-27-2016)
  • Driver standings following Michigan:
    [8 drivers qualify for the Camping World Truck Series Chase. 3 more races until the Chase cutoff.] 1) #9-William Byron # [5 wins], 379
    2) #19-Daniel Hemric, 343, -36
    3) #17-Timothy Peters, 335, -44
    4) #21-Johnny Sauter [1 win], 330, -49
    5) #88-Matt Crafton [2 wins], 322, -57
    6) #33-Ben Kennedy[1 win], 309, -70
    7) #4-Christopher Bell #[1 win], 305, -75
    8) #8-John Hunter Nemechek [1 win], 288, -91
    9) #13-Cameron Hayley, 288, -91
    10) #00-Cole Custer, 285, -94
    See complete standings on the driver standings page (pdf).(8-27-2016)
  • Owner Standings following Michigan are posted (pdf).(8-27-2016)
  • Lucky Dogs – Who got a lap back on each caution at Michigan: (and their finish)
    Caution 1: #1-Cobb, 17th
    Caution 2: none
    Caution 3: #63-Benning, 27th
    Caution 4: #49-Sorenson, 21st
    Caution 5: #49-Sorenson, 21st
    Caution 6: #29-Reddick, 19th
    Caution 7: #49-Sorenson, 21st
    (8-27-2016)
  • Townley on pole at Michigan: #05-John Wes Townley won the pole for the Careers for Veterans 200 at Michigan International Speedway with a speed of 183.697mph. #88-Matt Crafton will start second, followed by #9-William Byron, #17-Timothy Peters, #4-Christopher Bell, #11-Brett Moffitt, #21-Johnny Sauter, #29-Tyler Reddick, #24-Grant Enfinger,and #51-Cody Coughlin.
    Townley was fastest in the first round at 183.711mph.
    Did Not Qualify: none.
    See complete lineup on the Starting lineup (pdf) page.(8-27-2016)
  • Michigan Qualifying Notes:
    John Wes Townley won the Keystone Light Pole Award for the 17th Annual Careers for Veterans 200 Presented by The Cooper Standard Foundation & Brad Keselowski’s Checkered Flag Foundation with a lap of 39.195 seconds, 183.697 mph.
    This is his second pole in 104 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
    This is his second pole and fifth top-10 start in 2016. Townley is the first driver with multiple poles in 2016.
    This is his first pole in four races at Michigan International Speedway.
    Matt Crafton (second) posted his eighth top-10 start of 2016 and his eighth in 15 races at Michigan International Speedway.
    William Byron (third) posted his first top-10 start at Michigan International Speedway. It is his 11th in 14 races this season.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-27-2016)
  • Actor Jake Short serves as honorary pace car driver: Actor Jake Short will serve as the honorary pace car driver for Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway. Short, the star of Disney XD’s Lab Rats: Elite Force, will lead the field to the green flag for the Pure Michigan 400. He will also serve as the Honorary Kids Drive NASCAR Ambassador this weekend at the racetrack. “It’s a thrill for me to go to Michigan to participate in in a NASCAR event,” Short said. “We all grow up and want to be race car drivers – and I get to be experience that. There’s nothing like a NASCAR race.” Short is the youngest person (Short is 19) to ever drive a pace car to start a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.(MIS)(8-27-2016)


    News from August 26, 2016


     

  • Logano wins Michigan pole: #22-Joey Logano won the Coors Light pole for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway with speed of 201.698mph for his 3rd pole of 2016, 3rd at Michigan and 17th of his career. Logano has won three races from the pole in his career in 16 tries, including both times he won the pole at Michigan. Logano won from the pole in June at Michigan, leading 138 of 200 laps.
    #48-Johnson will start 2nd, followed by #11-Hamlin, #4-Harvick, #24-Elliott, #88-Alex Bowman, #21-Blaney, #1-McMurray, #19-Edwards, #31-Newman, #5-Kahne and #42-Larson.
    #42-Larson was quickest in the second round with a speed of 201.879mph, starts 12th.
    #48-Johnson was fastest in the first round at 201.134, starts 2nd.
    Since the maximum of 40 cars entered the race, everyone made the race.
    See round-by-round qualifying results on the Michigan qualifying results page (pdf) and the complete starting lineup on the Michigan Starting Lineup page (pdf).(8-26-2016)
  • Michigan International Speedway – Qualifying Fast Facts:
    #22-Joey Logano won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 47th Annual Pure Michigan 400 with a lap of 35.697 seconds, 201.698 mph.
    This is his 17th pole in 279 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his third pole and 18th top-10 start in 2016.
    This is his third pole in 16 races at Michigan International Speedway. Logano won the race after winning his previous two Michigan poles. Two drivers have won three or more Michigan races from the pole: NASCAR Hall of Famers David Pearson (four) and Bill Elliott (three).
    #48-Jimmie Johnson (second) posted his 10th top-10 start of 2016 and his 20th in 30 races at Michigan International Speedway.
    #11-Denny Hamlin (third) posted his 11th top-10 start at Michigan International Speedway. It is his 22nd in 24 races this season.
    #24-Chase Elliott (fifth) was the fastest qualifying rookie.(NASCAR Statistics)(8-26-2016)
  • Second Round of Qualifying for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is over, after 10 scheduled minutes.
    #42-Larson 201.879
    #24-Elliott 201.726
    #1-McMurray 201.556
    #11-Hamlin 201.112
    #48-Johnson 201.061
    the rest of the top 12: 4 21 22 88 19 5 31;
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to round 3: 20 78 14 18 3 2 41 27 34 16 10 6
    (8-26-2016)
  • First Round of Qualifying for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is over, after 20 scheduled minutes.
    #48-Johnson 201.134
    #11-Hamlin 200.764
    #42-Larson 200.647
    #27-Menard 200.429
    #24-Elliott 200.273
    the rest of the top 24: 88 78 22 20 41 1 19 21 5 4 18 14 31 16 2 3 34 10 6;
    out of the top 24 and not advancing to round 2: 47 43 15 13 17 44 7 23 38 83 95 46 98 30 55 32
    Drivers who will miss the race: none, as 40 cars were entered for 40 spots
    (8-26-2016)
  • Coverage of Qualifying for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is scheduled for Friday, August 26, 2016 at 5:15pm/et.
    Television (TV): NBCSN, 5:00pm/et
    Radio: Live online at Motor Racing Network (MRN)
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: none
  • Group qualifying under the three-round qualifying format:
    ” Round 1 — All entries will have 20 minutes to post a qualifying time, after which the 24 registering the fastest laps will advance to the second round. Those failing to advance will be sorted based on first-round times in descending order (from fastest to slowest).
    ” Round 2 — The 24 fastest from the first round will have 10 minutes to post a second-round qualifying time, with the 12 fastest advancing to a third round. Those not advancing will earn starting positions 13 through 24 based on time, again in descending order.
    ” Round 3 — The final round will be five minutes in length. The fastest times from this session will determine the first (Coors Light Pole Award) through 12th starting positions.
    There will be a seven-minute break between each round; teams may make adjustments to their entries only during the individual breaks. They will not be allowed to jack the vehicle or raise the hood, and once the car or truck enters the garage, it will no longer be permitted to return to the track for additional qualifying attempts.
  • Qualifying Order for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is posted. 40 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first driver to be lined up on pit road will be #17-Stenhouse Jr.
    The final driver lined up on pit road will be #4-Harvick.
    The order is set by a random draw, how cars park on pit road before they qualify, held about an hour before the first practice.
    After the first round, the cars line up by speed.
    See the full qualifying order on Jayski.com’s Michigan Qualifying Order Page (pdf).
  • Michigan Pole Notes & Facts:
    � Donnie Allison won the inaugural Coors Light pole at Michigan in 1969 with a speed of 160.135 mph.
    � 47 drivers have Coors Light poles at Michigan, led by David Pearson with 10. Kasey Kahne leads all active drivers with three.
    � Six drivers have won consecutive Coors Light poles at Michigan. David Pearson holds the record for most consecutive poles at Michigan with five; fall 1976 through 1978.
    � 20 of the 94 (21.3%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Michigan have been won from the Coors Light pole; the last two races have been won from the pole – Matt Kenseth (Aug. 2015) and Joey Logano (June 2016).
    � The Coors Light pole position is the most proficient starting position in the field, producing more winners (20) than any other starting position at Michigan International Speedway.
    � 28 of the 94 (29.8%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Michigan have been won from the front row: 20 from the pole and eight from second-place.
    � 56 of the 94 (59.6%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Michigan have been won from a top-five starting position.
    � 71 of the 94 (75.5%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Michigan have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    � Seven of the 94 (7.4%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Michigan have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.
    � Jimmie Johnson leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average starting position at Michigan with a 9.724. � The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Michigan is 32nd, by Mark Martin in the spring of 2009.
    � Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Michigan International Speedway four times; most recently the spring of 2008 race.
    (NASCAR)
  • Friday practice for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #78-Truex Jr. 201.545
    #48-Johnson 201.134
    #22-Logano 200.966
    #21-Blaney 200.775
    #42-Larson 200.730
    #88-Bowman was 14th fastest
    most laps run: #14-Stewart, 29; #88-Bowman, 24.
    slowest: #55-Sorenson 187.818 & #98-Whitt 188.957
    notes: practice was aired on NBCSN.
    late in practice, #32-Earnhardt got into the wall, the team will go to a backup car for qualifying.
    qualifying is scheduled for 5:15pm/et, also on NBCSN.
    See fastest speeds, laps run and best 10 consecutive lap ave on the Michigan Practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-26-2016)
  • Stewart to appeal ruling: Tony Stewart will appeal a ruling last month by a U.S. District Court judge who determined Axis Insurance Company does not have to cover legal costs and claims by the family of Kevin Ward Jr. against Stewart. The judge ruled that Stewart’s policy did not cover Empire Super Sprints events, the series Stewart was competing in when the Ward tragedy occurred in August 2014 at Canandaigua (N.Y.) Motorsports Park.(ESPN)(8-26-2016)
  • University of Michigan scheme on the #88 at MIS: Alex Bowman will return behind the wheel of the #88 Axalta/University of Michigan Chevy this weekend. The 23-year-old will fill in for Earnhardt for the second time this weekend in Michigan. He previously subbed for Earnhardt at New Hampshire and was running solidly inside the top 10 before a flat tire relegated him to a 26th-place finish. Axalta and the University of Michigan recently partnered to support engineering and business students in addition to coatings research and other projects, leading to a joint paint scheme that Bowman will run this weekend at Michigan. The maize and blue #88 Axalta/University of Michigan Chevy was unveiled in June at Axalta’s Mt. Clemens manufacturing plant in honor of the organization receiving the General Motors Supplier of the Year award for the second consecutive year.(HMS), see images of the scheme on the #88 Team Schemes page (8-25-2016)
  • What is Marcos Ambrose up to: Former NASCAR driver and race winner Marcos Ambrose, left the sport of auto racing to develop a new tourism venture Thousand Lakes Lodge near Lake Augusta in the Central Highlands (Tasmania, Austrailia). Ambrose says driving a race car and developing a new tourism product may seem worlds apart, however it’s been surprising to experience the similarities between rising up the ranks of professional sport and developing a new tourism product. In an interview (video) at ultra106five.com, Ambrose provides insights into the lessons he has learned as an elite sportsperson and applying them to developing a tourism business in the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area in the Central Highlands and added that he was extremely excited to be back in Tasmania and involved in the tourism industry.(8-26-2016)
  • NASCAR Rolls Out Lower Downforce Package For Third Time This Season: NASCAR will roll out its updated lower downforce rules package it used at Michigan and Kentucky earlier this season in Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway. The rules package developments are part of an industry-wide collaboration to further enhance the racing. Earlier this season, welded truck trailing arms and new brake cooling rules were put into place. The following updates to the rules package help to further reduce downforce and sideforce:
    Reduce skew generated sideforce by setting rear toe to zero (same rule used in the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race)
    Aero package tweaks to reduce aero-generated downforce and sideforce
    Spoiler shortened from 3.5 inches to 2.5 inches
    Splitter reduced to 2 inches
    Resize of deck fin to match spoiler
    Team Penske has won every race where this package has been used this season. #22-Joey Logano triumphed in the June Michiganrace, while #2-Brad Keselowski took the checkered flag at Kentucky.(NASCAR)(8-26-2016)
  • Careers For Veterans to be featured on Keselowski’s car at Michigan: Something will be different about Brad Keselowski’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car at Michigan International Speedway (MIS). This weekend at MIS, thanks to a cooperative effort between Miller Lite and Cooper Standard, the rear quarter panels of the #2 Ford Fusion will feature CareersForVeterans.org, a veterans initiative created by Cooper Standard, a Brad Keselowski Racing partner. Miller Lite and MillerCoors have enjoyed a longstanding partnership with Team Penske and Keselowski. Cooper Standard has supported the men and women who serve our country by helping them put their unique skill sets to work when they complete their service.
    “This is a tremendous opportunity to bring national attention to the Careers For Veterans program and it wouldn’t be possible without the cooperation of our longtime partner MillerCoors,” Keselowski said. “There have been some big moments for me this season and hopefully we can add a few more this weekend at my home track in Michigan.”
    The high-profile platform is a direct result of Cooper Standard’s longtime partnership with Keselowski. Cooper Standard continues its long-running relationship with Brad Keselowski Racing in 2016 as primary sponsor of the #29 Ford F-150 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Through Cooper Standard’s relationship with BKR, visibility for the Careers For Veterans program has dramatically increased. The end result has been more veterans gaining employment once they return to civilian life.
    For the third consecutive season, Cooper Standard will serve as the entitlement sponsor for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. The Careers For Veterans 200 Presented by The Cooper Standard Foundation & Brad Keselowski’s Checkered Flag Foundation is scheduled for August 27 at Michigan International Speedway. The race further supports Cooper Standard’s mission to bring national attention to the importance of hiring our military veterans.(Brad Keselowski Racing)(8-26-2016)
  • Sad News – Waymond Lane Stricklin, Sr.: Waymond Lane Stricklin, Sr. went home to the Lord on August 24, 2016. He was born February 19, 1940 in Vina, AL (Franklin County). Mr. Stricklin was the owner of Giant Auto Parts in Pelham, AL for 32 years. He drove late model race cars until the late 1970s after which he enjoyed watching NASCAR races. His son, Hut Stricklin raced in NASCAR, competing in 328 Sprint Cup Series races with 2 2nd place finishes and 54 XFINITY Series races. Full obituary, guest book and service info at at pattersonfuneralhomes.com (8-26-2016)
  • Alex Tagliani on XFINITY pole at Road America: #22-Alex Tagliani won the Coors Light pole for the Road America 180 at Road America with a speed of 109.866mph. #2-Michael McDowell will start second. The rest of the top 10: #42-Justin Marks, #18-Owen Kelly, #19-Daniel Suarez, #3-Ty Dillon, #16-Ryan Reed, #62-Brendan Gaughan, #11-Blake Koch, and #20-Erik Jones.
    Did Not Qualify: None. Only 40 cars entered.
    The starting lineup is posted on the Road America starting lineup page (pdf).(8-26-2016)
  • Road America XFINITY Qualifying Notes:
    Alex Tagliani won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 7th Annual Road America 180 Fired Up by Johnsonville with a lap of 132.641 seconds, 109.866 mph.
    This is his fourth pole in eight NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first pole and first top-10 start in 2016.
    This is his second pole in two races at Road America.
    Michael McDowell(i) (second) posted his first top-10 start of 2016 and his fifth in five races at Road America.
    Justin Marks (third) posted his third top-10 start at Road America. It is his first in 13 races this season.
    Erik Jones (10th) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-26-2016)
  • Justin Marks fastest in XFINITY final practice: #42-Justin Marks was fastest during final practice at Road America with a speed of 108.946mph. The rest of the top 10: #2-Michael McDowell, #22-Alex Tagliani, #18-Owen Kelly, #3-Ty Dillon, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #19-Daniel Suarez, #51-Jeremy Clements, #48-Brennan Poole, and #62-Brendan Gaughan. All 40 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Road America practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(8-26-2016)
  • Michael McDowell fastest in first XFINITY practice: #2-Michael McDowell was fastest during opening practice at Road America with a speed of 108.847mph. #18-Owen Kelly was second, followed by: #22-Alex Tagliani, #42-Justin Marks, #62-Brendan Gaughan, #3-Ty Dillon, #7-Justin Allgaier, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #19-Daniel Suarez, and #90-JD Davsion. 31 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Road America practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-26-2016)
  • Drissi returns to the #14 at Road America: TriStar Motorsports announces Tomy Drissi’s return as the driver of the #14 Toyota for the NASCAR XFINITY Series Road America 180 Fired Up by Johnsonville at Road America. Drissi drove the #14 Arthritis Foundation Toyota for the Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen earlier this month. During that event, Drissi was involved in an on-track incident which resulted in minor injuries forcing Drissi to withdraw from participating at Mid-Ohio. Having recently received NASCAR medical clearance, Drissi will return to the seat of the #14 Arthritis Foundation Toyota this weekend.(TriStar Motorsports)(8-26-2016)
  • Reddick fastest in final Truck practice: #29-Tyler Reddick was fastest in final practice for the Careers for Veterans 200 at Michigan International Speedway with a speed of 185.735mph. He was followed by #11-Brett Moffitt, #21-Johnny Sauter, #19-Daniel Hemric, #98-Rico Abreu, #88-Matt Crafton, #00-Cole Custer, #8-John Hunter Nemechek, #13-Cameron Hayley, and #24-Grant Enfinger. 27 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Michigan practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(8-26-2016)
  • Hayley fastest in first Truck practice: #13-Cameron Hayley was fastest during opening practice at Michigan International Speedway with a speed of 186.804 mph. #21-Johnny Sauter, #88-Matt Crafton, #11-Brett Moffitt, #41-Ben Rhodes, #29-Tyler Reddick, #51-Cody Coughlin, #9-William Byron, #98-Rico Abreu, and #8-John Hunter Nemechek were the top-10. 31 drivers are entered and all practiced during the session. See complete results on the Michigan practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-26-2016)


    News from August 25, 2016


  • Tanger Outlets to make NASCAR Debut with Sponsorship on the #78: Tanger Outlets will be the primary sponsor on Martin Truex Jr.’s #78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota for the Federated Auto Parts 400 Saturday night Sept. 10 at Richmond International Raceway. The red, black and gray paint scheme that will be adorned on Truex’s Tanger Outlets Toyota Camry will be showcased at NASCAR’s final Sprint Cup Series race before the 10-race Chase playoffs begin. The sponsorship will be the first NASCAR involvement for Tanger Outlets. Headquartered in Greensboro, N.C., Tanger Factory Outlet Centers operates and owns, or has ownership interest, in 43 upscale outlet shopping centers located coast to coast in 21 states and Canada. More than 185 million shoppers visit the Tanger Outlet Centers annually.
    “Tanger Outlets is known for its competitive spirit and partnerships with winning brands,” said Steven B. Tanger, president and chief operating officer of Tanger Outlets. “The Furniture Row Racing team sponsorship allows us to team up with another best in class NASCAR brand and support Martin Truex Jr.’s efforts to reach Richmond’s Victory Lane.”
    Truex, who already has clinched a Chase berth, said he is proud to be the first NASCAR driver with the Tanger Outlet sponsorship. “I take a great deal of pride that Tanger Outlets has chosen our Furniture Row Racing team for its first sponsorship venture in NASCAR,” said Truex. “It’s an honor to have a successful, high profile company be part of our team. The Tanger Outlets company has been a winning business story for decades and having its name on our car will give us even more incentive to get to Richmond’s Victory Lane.”(FRR), see images of the scheme on the #78 Team Schemes page (8-25-2016)
  • Michigan Track Notes & History:
    � Michigan International Speedway sits on more than 1,400 acres in the “Irish Hills” of Southeastern Michigan. Ground-breaking took place on Sept. 28, 1967.
    � The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan was held June 15, 1969 – won by Cale Yarborough at a speed of 139.254 mph.
    � The track was known as Michigan Speedway during the time Roger Penske was the primary owner (1996-99).
    � The first race was 500 miles in length; the second was scheduled for 600. The track was re-measured to 2.04 miles for the last race in 1970
    and both races in 1971 – with the race distance being 402 miles. All other races have been scheduled for 400 miles.
    � The 2-mile speedway underwent a repave in 2012. (NASCAR)
  • Michigan Goodyear Tire Notes: While teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Camping World Truck Series will run the same right-side tire at Michigan this weekend, they will run distinct left-side tires . . . in Sprint Cup, this is the same tire set-up teams ran at this track in June . . . this right-side tire code incorporates Goodyear Racing’s multi-zone tread technology, which features two distinct tread compounds — one for endurance and heat resistance on the inboard two inches of the tread and one for traction on the outboard 10 inches . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners in all four tire positions at Michigan . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.
  • Careers For Veterans to be featured on Keselowski’s car at Michigan: Something will be different about Brad Keselowski’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car at Michigan International Speedway (MIS). This weekend at MIS, thanks to a cooperative effort between Miller Lite and Cooper Standard, the rear quarter panels of the #2 Ford Fusion will feature CareersForVeterans.org, a veterans initiative created by Cooper Standard, a Brad Keselowski Racing partner. Miller Lite and MillerCoors have enjoyed a longstanding partnership with Team Penske and Keselowski. Cooper Standard has supported the men and women who serve our country by helping them put their unique skill sets to work when they complete their service.(Brad Keselowski Racing)(8-25-2016)
  • Power Wash Store Joins Germain Racing at Michigan: Power Wash Store owner and U.S. Army veteran, Paul Kassander was looking to tie his love for NASCAR racing and his high regard for the U.S. armed forces together. As a result, he partnered with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series #13 team Germain Racing for Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway and created “WASH 4 WARRIORS,” a Texas-sized vehicle washing event that is scheduled around the October NASCAR race at Texas Motor Speedway. “The Power Wash Store is thrilled to be associated with Casey Mears and the Germain Racing family at Michigan. Our values and cultures align. Casey and the team are our kind of people. We look forward to being a small part of the effort,” said Kassander. WASH 4 WARRIORS will benefit The Boot Campaign, a national charity located in Tyler, Texas. All of the funds raised by WASH 4 WARRIORS will go to support their efforts. The Boot Campaign mission is to raise awareness of the unique challenges service members face during and post-service; and provide assistance to military personnel, past and present, and their families.(Germain Racing)(8-25-2016)
  • NASCAR and Nickelodeon Wave Green Flag for Third Season of Hammer Down: NASCAR and Nickelodeon are joining forces again to take viewers inside the world of NASCAR racing with the return NASCAR Hammer Down. Premiering Friday, Sept. 23 at 9:30pm (ET/PT) on Nicktoons, the third season of NASCAR Hammer Down features eight, 15-minute episodes hosted by Karsyn Elledge, granddaughter of Dale Earnhardt and daughter of Kelley Earnhardt Miller. This season, Elledge will be joined by her sister, Kennedy Elledge, for driver interviews, goofy antics and behind-the-scenes insight into the technology and people that propel more than 90 annual NASCAR national series events. Ryan Blaney, driver of the #21 Ford for Wood Brothers Racing, and Bubba Wallace Jr., driver of the #6 Ford for Roush Fenway Racing, also return as series regulars for the popular “Bubba & Blaney” segment. Produced by NASCAR Productions, season three premieres with back-to-back episodes, the first of which emanates from the NASCAR Hall of Fame.(NASCAR)(8-25-2016)
  • Larson unveils Darlington scheme: Like peanut butter and jelly, or the Southern 500 and Labor Day weekend, country music and NASCAR seemingly go hand in hand. For this year’s NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Darlington Raceway, Chip Ganassi Racing driver Kyle Larson will be getting a retro makeover on his #42 ENEOS Chevrolet Camaro based on a car driven by country music legend Marty Robbins, who also frequently ran the #42. While some sing about the things they’d like to do, Robbins strapped on a helmet and did the thing he loved to do, which was race. The country singer, best known for his songs “El Paso” and “Big Iron”, competed in a total of 35 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races from 1966-1982, and also ran one race in the Grand National East Series. Robbins was a well-respected driver among his competitors and his familiar purple and gold car was always a fan favorite when he raced at the Nashville Fairgrounds. Larson has made 10 NXS starts in 2016, scoring one win, six top-five and 10 top-10 finishes. He has three career NXS starts at Darlington Raceway, scoring three top-10 finishes. In addition, Larson has one career NXS win in the ENEOS livery. The 2016 “Throwback Weekend” at Darlington Raceway will be the second consecutive year that NASCAR’s oldest speedway has partnered with teams along with network and industry partners to commemorate their storied past; while celebrating current stars and the future of the sport.(Chip Ganassi Racing), see an image of the car on the #42 team paint schemes page(8-25-2016)
  • Heckert returns to the #15 at Road America: Set to make his third NASCAR XFINITY Series start of the season in Saturday afternoon’s Road America 180 fueled by Johnsonville, Scott Heckert looks to build on his outstanding performance at Watkins Glen International earlier this month. Teamed up with B.J. McLeod Motorsports, Heckert showcased his road racing skills in the Zippo 200 at WGI, where he hustled the #15 B.J. McLeod Motorsports Ford Mustang to 17th in qualifying then utilized his ability to muscle inside the top-10. Finding himself a victim in an on-track incident, limited downforce stalled his momentum, yielding a 16th place finish. While the finish was a career-best for the NASCAR K&N; Pro Series East veteran, Heckert returns to the final road course race of the season looking to finish what he started and seek his first top-10 finish in the penultimate standalone race of the season. B.J. McLeod, whose team is working with Rick Ware Racing in a collaborative effort this weekend at Road America has prepared Heckert’s car for his third XFINITY Series start of the season.(McLeod Motorsports)(8-25-2016)
  • GMS adds new partner Descartes: GMS Racing officials announced that Descartes, a global leader in providing on-demand, software-as-a-service solutions focused on improving the productivity, performance and security of logistics-intensive businesses, will sponsor the team for select races during the second half of the 2016 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCTWS) season. The company’s NASCAR premier will come at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park in September. The Waterloo, Ontario-based organization will serve as primary sponsor for Kaz Grala, who will make his NCWTS road-course debut at CTMP. In four starts this season, Kaz has two top-10 finishes, with a career-best finish of eighth at Gateway Motorsports Park.(See an image of the truck on the #24 Team Paint Schemes page)(GMS Racing)(8-25-2016)
  • Coughlin to miss scheduled truck start for KBM UPDATE: Cody Coughlin has been on a quest in 2016. The Joe Gibbs Racing Development driver is attempting to accomplish a feat that has never been done. Coughlin is aiming for two championships in the Champion Racing Association championship. Due to this fact, Coughlin will be unable to compete in the NASCAR Camping World Trucks Series event for Kyle Busch Motorsports on Sunday, September 4th at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park in Ontario, Canada.The 20-year-old has five total wins so far this year between the ARCA/CRA Super Series and JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour, and Coughlin leads the points in both divisions. On Labor Day Weekend, Coughlin has a double-header at the historic Winchester Speedway in Indiana. Coughlin was originally scheduled to make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series road course debut, but will instead be headed to the high-banks of Winchester with his KBM team cheering him on. Coughlin’s first race that weekend will be the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour 100 that Sunday. The 2013 champion currently holds a 103-point lead in that division. He will then run another 100 laps the next day in his Super Late Model with the ARCA/CRA Super Series. Coughlin has a 17-point lead that he’s looking to extend that at a track where he’s already scored a victory once before. A replacement driver for Coughlin’s #51 JEGS.com Toyota Tundra will be announced at a later date.(Cody Coughlin)(8-18-2016)
    UPDATE: Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) announced that Canada native and NASCAR Next driver Gary Klutt will make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut Sept. 4 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park behind the wheel of the #51 JEGS/UDMC/Bothwell-Accurate Tundra.The 24-year-old driver will be filling in for Cody Coughlin, who was originally scheduled to make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series road-course debut in the #51 Tundra but with KBM’s blessing will instead be headed to the high-banks of Winchester (Ind.) Speedway to continue his quest at Late Model history. Coughlin has five total wins so far this year between the ARCA/CRA Super Series and JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour, and leads the points in both divisions. No driver has ever won both Champion Racing Association championships in the same season. Klutt is currently in his second season driving full-time in the NASCAR Pinty’s Series (NPS). He won the 2015 Pinty’s Series season opener at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP) and overall has four top-10 finishes in six starts at the 1.37-mile road course. The NASCAR Next product captured the NPS Series Rookie of the Year honors and finished fifth in series points in 2015 after recording one win, two poles, one top-five and seven-top 10 finishes across 11 starts. In addition to JEGS, Klutt is welcoming a new partner for this race, UDMC/Weld-Tek Ltd., as well as his NPS team partners Bothwell-Accurate, Trailcon Leasing, Poolsuppliescanada.ca, CTL, Thermal Technologies Services Limited for his Truck Series debut.(See an image of the truck on the #51 Team Paint Schemes page)(Kyle Busch Motorsports(8-25-2016)
  • Dover Motorsports announces agreement to sell Nashville Superspeedway: Dover Motorsports announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell its Nashville Superspeedway facility to an entity owned by Panattoni Development Company, an international commercial real estate development company specializing in industrial, office and build-to-suit projects. Under the terms of the agreement, Dover Motorsports and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Nashville Speedway U.S.A., Inc., will sell the Nashville Superspeedway facility along with some related equipment and assets for $27.5 million in cash and the assumption by the purchaser of obligations of Dover Motorsports under certain Variable Rate Tax Exempt Infrastructure Revenue Bonds. Closing is subject to customary due diligence and closing conditions, including zoning approvals, and is anticipated to take place in the first quarter of 2017. (Dover International Speedway)(8-25-2016)
  • Jason Hall Rolls On as Honorary Starter of Pure Michigan 400: Slow Roll comes to the fastest track in NASCAR this Sunday, August 28 when honorary starter Jason Hall waves the green flag at the Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway. Hall, of Detroit, is the co-founder of Slow Roll Detroit – possibly one of the largest weekly bicycle rides in the world. He is a true ambassador to the City of Detroit having won such awards as The Best of Michigan Business Award as a marketing savant, The Vanguard Award from Detroit Young Professionals, The 2014 D Show Ambassador Award from Adcraft and most recently the Sierra Club’s Green Cruiser of the year. In addition to waving the green flag at Michigan International Speedway on Sunday, Hall will attend the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers’ meeting and pre-race ceremonies and driver introductions.
    “Jason brings so much positive energy to everything he does, and I have no doubt the same will hold true as he kicks off this year’s Pure Michigan 400,” said Dave Lorenz, Vice President of Travel Michigan, part of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. “Slow Roll is one of the inspiring and memorable stories coming out of Detroit today, and Jason is a terrific ambassador for the city and for all of Michigan.”
    With thousands of riders each week, Slow Roll Detroit is a group bicycle ride that meets every Monday night in Detroit to take a unique route throughout the city, exploring major and minor neighborhoods of the city along the way. Now in its 6th Season, Slow Roll has expanded into a national network of community ride and is quickly becoming the largest weekly bike ride in the world. “It’s an honor to be invited by Pure Michigan to take part in the Pure Michigan 400,” Hall said. “It’s rare that I get to go fast on Slow Roll so to be able to bring the two cultures together means a ton.” Hall has also seen Slow Roll gain the attention of many top companies, the most popular being Apple which picked Jason and Slow Roll as their ad campaign for the Apple IPad. When he’s not organizing routes, meeting with the city police, appearing weekly on Local 4’s Live in the D as a Professional or touring with Apple he spends the little spare time he has relaxing with his dog Lou and finding new restaurants.(MIS)(8-25-2016)
  • Kids celebrated at the track this weekend at MIS: Michigan International Speedway has a long-standing tradition of providing memorable experiences to race fans of all ages. But this week, thanks to NASCAR, that effort continues to be enhanced. The track and NASCAR have combined to elevate once-in-a-lifetime experiences for children, taking them to a whole new level this weekend. Why? Because Kids Drive NASCAR. Track president Roger Curtis and his staff are committed to providing children with memorable experiences each trip to MIS through the Fan Appreciation Program. Each year the opportunities have expanded as more children come to the race. The track annually participates in youth-only autograph sessions with drivers and open garage session in each of the series garage. Children attending the Pure Michigan 400 and Careers for Veterans 200 will be featured guests at driver and crew chief meetings and receive behind-the-scenes garage tours and photos with drivers. NASCAR’s and MIS’ social media channels will share Kids Drive NASCAR content throughout the week, including videos and Snapchat takeovers featuring young drivers sharing their off-track experiences, and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers with their kids. Fans are also invited to get in on the fun by sharing pictures of their children and families enjoying NASCAR races using #KidsDriveNASCAR. Michigan International Speedway has had special youth pricing for the past nine season. Kids 12 and under are free for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Careers for the Veterans on Saturday and the Pure Michigan 400 in certain sections on Sunday. In addition, juniors ages 13-16 are half priced on both Saturday and Sunday. More info and details at mispeedway.com (8-25-2016)


    News from August 24, 2016


  • Earnhardt Jr. to miss next two races: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Chevy for Hendrick Motorsports, has not been cleared by physicians to compete in at least the next two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events as he continues to recover from a concussion. Earnhardt, who will miss the races at Michigan (Aug. 28) and Darlington (Sept. 4), underwent further evaluation today at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Sports Medicine Concussion Program. “We know how hard Dale is working to get back,” said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports. “He’s following what the doctors are saying, to the letter, and doing exactly what he needs to do. Everyone wants to see him in a race car, but his health is first and foremost. We’re behind him.” Alex Bowman, who drove the #88 Chevrolet in Earnhardt’s absence July 17 at New Hampshire, will be the team’s substitute driver this weekend at Michigan. He has four career Sprint Cup starts at the track. Four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon will return to the #88 team at Darlington, where his seven wins lead all active drivers. Gordon has driven the last four races for Earnhardt — at Indy, Pocono, Watkins Glen and Bristol.(Hendrick Motorsports)(8-24-2016)
  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Michigan:
    Chase Elliott……………………….. 123.8
    Matt Kenseth………………………. 102.7
    Carl Edwards………………………. 101.3
    Greg Biffle………………………….. 100.6
    Jimmie Johnson…………………….. 99.2
    Joey Logano…………………………. 96.7
    Tony Stewart………………………… 93.8
    Kevin Harvick………………………… 92.7
    Brad Keselowski……………………. 92.4
    Kurt Busch……………………………. 90.5
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2016 races (23 total) among active drivers at Michigan International Speedway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)
  • Kahne, Labonte unveil LiftMaster Throwback scheme: Wednesday afternoon, #5-Kasey Kahne and Terry Labonte joined LiftMaster at the NASCAR Hall of Fame to unveil the throwback paint scheme that Kahne will pilot next weekend at Darlington Raceway. The scheme reflects Labonte’s 1982 JD Stacy Buick paint scheme and also corresponds with LiftMaster’s founding year. “This paint scheme brings back a lot of really great memories for me, and I’m honored that LiftMaster put together this program with Kasey and the #5 team for Darlington,” Labonte. “To experience the unveiling through virtual reality is something I would have never thought was possible in 1982, so to see just how far technology has come and how LiftMaster integrates it into its products was really neat.” The scheme was unveiled through an interactive virtual reality experience, allowing guests in attendance to virtually go back to 1982 and see the car as Labonte drove it, while also seeing Kahne’s tribute version. “Darlington’s throwback weekend is one of the coolest programs any track does all year,” Kahne said. “I’m glad that LiftMaster is participating in the program to celebrate their start of the garage door opener business. I appreciate the opportunity to honor Terry Labonte with our throwback paint scheme at one of my favorite tracks.”(HMS), see images of the scheme on the #5 Team Schemes page (8-24-2016)
  • Buescher to run Love’s throwback scheme at Darlington: Chris Buescher and Love’s Travel Stops will turn the clock back to 1981 – the year Love’s opened its first travel stop – for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. Front Row Motorsports and Love’s unveiled the #34 team’s paint scheme for the Sept. 4 Sprint Cup Series race Wednesday on social media. The stripes replicate the look that was on the fuel canopies and the building’s fa�ade at the company’s first travel stop, which opened in 1981 in Amarillo, Texas. Today Love’s has more than 390 locations in 40 states and employs more than 15,000 people. “The Darlington throwback weekend has become a pretty big deal, and it’s cool to have Love’s Travel Stops bring some of their history into the race weekend with their old colors,” said Buescher. “Darlington is my favorite track, and I can’t wait to get there and turn some laps in this special Love’s Ford Fusion.”(Front Row Motorsports), see images of the scheme on the #34 Team Schemes page (8-24-2016)
  • Bristol TV Ratings: Postponed a day due to rain, NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Bristol earned a 1.5 final rating and 2.7 million viewers on CNBC Sunday afternoon. Last year’s race had a 2.1 and 3.6 million run as scheduled on a Saturday night. Viewership easily topped the season’s previous postponed races – both at Pocono – which earned 1.4 and 1.7 million on Monday afternoons. The previous night, 23 minutes of live racing had 2.5 million on NBCSN.(Sports Media Watch and ShowBuzz Daily ), see race-by-race TV Ratings for 2016 and a comparison chart on the 2016 TV Ratings page.(8-24-2016)
  • Testing at Chicago August 23rd UPDATE: Chicagoland Speedway will host a NASCAR organizational test with several of the sport’s top teams on Tuesday, August 23, and fans are invited to take part in this preview to the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup weekend at Chicagoland Speedway September 15-18. The drivers who are tentatively scheduled to participate in the organizational test are as follows: #4-Kevin Harvick, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #18-Kyle Busch, #21-Ryan Blaney, #22-Joey Logano, #23-David Ragan, #31-Ryan Newman, #34-Chris Buescher, #44-Bryan Scott, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #78-Martin Truex Jr. and #95-Michael McDowell (All drivers scheduled to attend are subject to change at the discretion of NASCAR and its teams).
    With proof of their Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400 ticket purchase, fans can watch their favorite drivers participate in the organizational test free of charge from between 1 and 4 pm. Fans are required to bring their printed tickets as proof of purchase. Those who plan on attending the test can enter the facility through Gate 1 off West Schweitzer Road. Once inside the facility, fans will be directed to park along the Midway directly in front of the main box office. The box office will be open to accommodate fans looking to purchase tickets prior to the start of the organizational test. Attendees will then use the elevators to access the third floor where they will now be able to walk outside and sit within a reserved section of grandstand seats. This exclusive opportunity will be open for those wishing to take in all the sights and sounds of stock car racing. In accordance with usual rules and regulation, fans are welcome to bring soft coolers containing refreshments and snacks for the event.
    Lastly, a Chicagoland Speedway staff member will be available to escort a small group of fans every 10 minutes down near the front of the grandstands for a photo opportunity. The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup weekend at Chicagoland Speedway, Sept. 15-18, will begin on Thursday, Sept. 15 with the ARCA Racing Series followed by American Ethanol E15 225 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series under the lights on Friday night. On Saturday, Sept. 17, the NASCAR XFINITY Series will hit the track as the precursor to Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series showdown, the first race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.(Chicagoland Speedway)(8-17-2016)
    UPDATE NASCAR Sprint Cup teams spent Tuesday testing at Chicagoland Speedway, which will host the first race in the post-season Chase on Sept. 18. The test was originally slated to run two days but was cut down to one full day due to rain in the forecast for Wednesday. Throughout 12 hours of on-track testing, 14 drivers combined to complete 2,046 laps around the 1.5-mile oval with #4-Kevin Harvick running the most, 222. Harvick, who won the first two races at Chicagoland in 2001 and 2002, was the fastest with a lap of 185.268 mph coming on his third lap. #18-Kyle Busch was second-quick (184.628 mph) after running 214 laps with #21-Ryan Blaney (183.524 mph), #31-Ryan Newman (182.859 mph) and #7-Regan Smith (182.809 mph) rounding out the top five. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was on hand for the test, but Roush Fenway Racing teammate Trevor Bayne drove his #17 Ford. On Wednesday, Stenhouse will travel to Indiana to attend the Celebration of Bryan Clauson’s Life at Kokomo Speedway. “This was supposed to be a two-day test and they weren’t going to let me test one day, and then Trevor Wednesday,” Stenhouse said. “I was already in Chicago, so I just came to hang out with the guys.”(Motor Racing Network)(8-24-2046)
  • Bristol penalties/warnings announced: NASCAR has announced penalties and warnings following the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21st.
    #11-Hamlin(1 total current warning), #18-Busch(4), #31-Newman(2) and #78-Truex Jr.(3) teams received written warnings for failing pre-race laser inspection(LSI) twice. The #18 team will lose their pit stall selection at Michigan due to having a 4th current warning.
    #22-Logano’s (2) team received a written warning for failing pre-qualifying laser inspection(LIS) twice
    See the Bristol Post-Event Penalty & Warning Report (pdf) for more.(8-24-2016)
  • Target throwback scheme revealed: Chip Ganassi Racing and Kyle Larson will honor Target’s start in auto racing at this year’s Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. The team revealed Tuesday on social media the #42 Chevy to be used. The slick scheme honors Target’s first car in motorsports, in IndyCar in 1990. The bull’s-eye on the roof is a nod to both Chip Ganassi Racing’s relationship with Target, and also CGR’s roots in IndyCar racing. The Southern 500 will also mark Larson’s 100th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start.(NASCAR.com), see images of the scheme on the #42 Team Schemes page (8-24-2016)
  • Mountain Dew scheme returns for Elliott: After the first trip of his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career to Dover, earlier this season, #24-Chase Elliott walked away with a third-place finish. When the series returns to the First State in October, Elliott will be looking to do even better. In the October race, Elliott will have an extra kick in his step since he will be “fueled” by Mountain Dew. The citrus soda will serve as the primary sponsor on his #24 Chevy (Lionel Racing), see images of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page (8-24-2016)
  • Quarterly National Motorsports Press Association’s Pocono Spirit Award winner named:Autoweek’s Al Pearce wins quarterly National Motorsports Press Association’s Pocono Spirit Award. Pearce raised more than $13,000 through the sale of a helmet bearing the signatures of the 20 living Formula 1 champions as well as those of Phil Hill and Sir Jack Brabham, which he collected prior their passing. The project took nearly four years to complete and the helmet was sold at auction earlier this year. Proceeds went to the Victory Junction Gang Camp, the Kyle Petty Charity Ride, the Jimmie Johnson Foundation and the Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation. Pearce has covered NASCAR for Autoweek since 1972, and in 2012 was elected to the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame. He is currently embarking on another autographed helmet project — the 18 NHRA Top Fuel champions.(AutoWeek)(8-24-2016)
  • NASCAR Launches Youth Mobile App: Kids everywhere are going back to school, but not before celebrating the end of summer with NASCAR. All this week, Kids Drive NASCAR is engaging the sport’s young fans with news, events and social content geared toward kids leading up to the NASCAR national series races at Michigan International Speedway and Road America. As part of the festivities, NASCAR today announced the launch of the Acceleration Nation app, the first digital experience created just for kids featuring racing-themed games, activities and fun ways to learn more about NASCAR. Parents can download the new app for their children at the App Store and Google Play. NASCAR’s social media channels will share Kids Drive NASCAR content throughout the week, including videos and Snapchat takeovers featuring young drivers sharing their off-track experiences, and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers with their kids. Fans are also invited to get in on the fun by sharing pictures of their children and families enjoying NASCAR races using #KidsDriveNASCAR. The 6,400-square-foot NASCAR Acceleration Nation live experience will be on display at Michigan International Speedway and will host interactive activities and driver autograph signings for kids throughout the weekend. For more information about at NASCAR Acceleration Nation.(NASCAR)(8-24-2016)
  • Timmy Hill in the #70 at Road America: Derrike Cope Racing is partnering up with numerous returning partners for the upcoming Road America race, with Timmy Hill behind the wheel. Returning as a primary sponsor to DCR is E-hydrate. E-hydrate offers a line of products which include Hydration + Energy, Protein products, and more. They even have products available for children and active adults. An associate partner is Veteran’s Q BBQ on board. A group of military vets, Veteran’s Q produces great barbecue foods. Not only this, but 100% of their profits get donated to veteran organizations. Also as an associate sponsor will be Country Inn and Suites. Joining us once again will be Ice-Frost.(Derrike Cope Racing), see an image of the car on the #70 team paint schemes page.(8-24-2016)
  • Bubba Wallace picks up 4 race sponsor: Roush Fenway Racing is announcing a multi-race partnership with Leidos, a global science and technology solutions company. As part of its entry into NASCAR, Leidos will serve as a primary partner for NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Bubba Wallace and the #6 team. Leidos will serve as the primary partner for Wallace in NXS races at Dover (Oct. 1), Charlotte (Oct. 7), Kansas (Oct. 15) and Texas (Nov. 5), as the team looks to make a deep run into the inaugural XFINITY Series Chase for the championship. Wallace is currently ninth in the NXS point standings, with three top-five finishes and seven top 10s.(Roush Fenway Racing), see an image of the car on the #6 team paint schemes page.(8-24-2016)
  • Dakoda Armstrong to honor Davey Allison with Darlington throwback: JGL Racing announces a special tribute to legendary NASCAR driver Davey Allison and his #28 paint scheme from his historic rookie season of 1987. Dakoda Armstrong will pilot the #28 “Davey Allison Tribute” Toyota for the popular “Throwback” weekend at Darlington Raceway for the running of the VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200 on Saturday September 3rd. While sporting the very popular paint scheme from that rookie season, a special Davey Allison Tribute logo will adorn the hood of the #28 Toyota and season long sponsor Winfield will be displayed on the upper rear quarter panels for this throwback program. The year of 1987 was a special one for Davey Allison and his Harry Ranier led team. With the loss of sponsorship from Hardee’s from the previous season, Ranier negotiated a sponsorship deal with Texaco’s Havoline motor oil brand, a deal that was signed during the NASCAR edition of Speedweeks at Daytona International Speedway. On qualifying day, Davey signaled that he was in Winston Cup to stay when he qualified his Texaco-Havoline painted No. 28 Thunderbird second for the 1987 Daytona 500, becoming the first rookie ever to start on the front row for NASCAR’s most prestigious event. The pole would be the first of five Davey garnered during his ROY campaign to go along with two wins, nine top-five and 10 top-ten finishes. “Robbie, Krista and I are honored that Davey’s 1987 Rookie Paint Scheme will be a part of such a special weekend of throwbacks at Darlington”, stated Liz Allison. “Having the #28 on the track in the XFINITY Series with JGL Racing and Dakoda behind the wheel means so much to our family. This paint scheme is what fans remember most of all of Davey’s cars. We are truly grateful to have Davey remembered in this way.”(Integrity Sports Marketing), see an image of the car on the #28 team paint schemes page.(8-24-2016)
  • Bristol XFINITY warnings issued: NASCAR has announced a warning following the Bristol XFINITY Series race.
    #3-Ty Dillon (0), Failed laser inspection twice in pre-race inspection; penalty served in Bristol)
    #93-David Starr (1), Failed laser inspection twice in pre-race inspection; given a written warning
    ()–Total current warnings
    See the Bristol Post-Event Penalty & Warning Report(pdf) for more.(8-24-2016)
  • OneMain leaving NASCAR at end of season UPDATE – NO: Only 16 races into his first year with JR Motorsports in the Xfinity Series, Elliott Sadler felt as if his #1 Chevrolet team was meeting every expectation. From a business standpoint, though, the news wasn’t so good. The night before the July 1 race at Daytona International Speedway, Sadler received a call that longtime primary sponsor OneMain wouldn’t return for 2017. For the Emporia, Virginia, driver, whose cars have carried the company’s colors for more than five years, the news came as a shocking blow – particularly given his results this season and JRM’s reputation as an Xfinity Series mainstay known for its innovative approach to digital platforms, such as its podcasting network. OneMain was sold last year by Citigroup to Springleaf Holdings, and it isn’t unusual for companies to abandon NASCAR sponsorships after management changes. Dollar General, which named a new CEO last year, announced earlier this season it would be leaving the Joe Gibbs Racing Sprint Cup ride of Matt Kenseth because of a shift in marketing priorities. OneMain didn’t respond immediately to a request for comment. “I think they want to go in a different direction than what racing is,” Sadler said. “They didn’t share a lot with me other than that part of it.” Sadler, who has been friends with JRM co-owner Dale Earnhardt Jr. for over two decades, dating back to their days of racing Late Models together, hopes a championship would shore up his prospects for staying put. “The future is 100 percent uncertain with all this happening, but if I could get a blank sheet of paper and write down a wish list, it’d be to still race with JR Motorsports moving forward,” Sadler said. In a statement, JR Motorsports co-owner Kelley Earnhardt Miller said the team wants to maintain three Chevys again next season. JRM also fields the #7 for Justin Allgaier and a #88 that is split between several drivers.(NBC Sports)(7-12-2016)
    UPDATE: OneMain, America’s premier consumer finance company, has signed a multi-year extension to continue its sponsorship of Elliott Sadler and the #1 JR Motorsports race team in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, JRM General Manager Kelley Earnhardt Miller announced. OneMain will receive primary branding on Sadler’s #1 car for 20 races in 2017. It will mark the seventh year of partnership between OneMain and Sadler, the current Xfinity Series points leader. “We are thrilled to continue our partnership with Elliott Sadler and JR Motorsports,” said OneMain Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Bob Hurzeler. “After further evaluation of the program, we felt this relationship was a perfect fit for our company. Elliott has been an outstanding ambassador for OneMain and we look forward to our continued success with Elliott and JRM, on and off the track.” The announcement all but solidifies JR Motorsports’ driver line-up in 2017. JRM will compete for a championship with full-time entries for three drivers – Sadler, Justin Allgaier and William Byron. JRM will enter a fourth car on a select-race basis.(JR Motorsports)(8-24-2015)
  • JD Davison driving the #90 at Road America: King Autosport and Mario Gosselin announce the addition of JD Davison, an Australian native and Indianapolis 500 driver, to the roster for the Road America 180 Fired Up by Johnsonville. Davison has tasted success at Road America in the past, scoring the GT Pole in the IMSA United Sportscar Series in 2014 and winning the Pirelli World Challenge GT race in 2015. Together they are seeking another strong showing as Davison makes his debut in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. “Thank you to Mario and the King Autosport team for the opportunity to make my debut in NASCAR,” said Davison, driver of the #90 Always Evolving, AERNOW, ReplayXD, Cruz Associates Chevrolet Camaro. “I’m really looking forward to being a NASCAR driver for the first time and maximizing all that we have to score the best possible result.” Gosselin, whom is the regular driver of the #90, is calling the shots as crew chief for Davison this weekend at Road America. His most recent performance atop the box netted the team a top ten finish.(King Autosport)(8-24-2016)


    News from August 23, 2016


  • Biffle to run Hooters scheme at Darlington; promote National First Responders Day: Greg Biffle will honor the late Alan Kulwicki by running a Hooters throwback scheme in the famed Southern 500 at Darlington Speedway on Sunday, September 4th. In addition to honoring the 1992 Winston Cup Champion, Biffle and Hooters have teamed up to help petition congress to recognize our local and national heroes who risk their lives on a daily basis by creating a National First Responders Day. “I was a huge Alan Kulwicki fan, so this is a really special opportunity to get to honor him in this way,” said Biffle. “I’m also a fan of Hooters and really excited to support the campaign to create a National First Responders Day. There are so many men and women who risk their lives each and every day to keep the rest of us safe, they are the real heroes and definitely deserve a day of recognition.”
    Andrew Collier, brother of slain MIT police officer Sean Collier who gave his life protecting his community during the Boston marathon bombing tragedy, has been lobbying Congress since 2013 to formally recognize the contribution and sacrifice of First Responders but so far has been unable to secure enough support in Washington to succeed. Inspired by Andrew’s determined efforts and on behalf of First Responders across America, Hooters has partnered with the National Association of Police Organizations, the National Black Police Association and Thankyoufirstresponder.org to launch FirstRespondersDay.org. A website where Americans can express gratitude for First Responders and sign a petition formally requesting Congress to pass legislation creating a National First Responders Day. Fans are encouraged to sign the petition by visiting FirstRespondersDay.org.
    In addition to signing the petition, Americans can show their support for First Responders by posting a picture on social media using the hashtag #OneWordOneDay and holding a sign with one word that they believe best represents First Responders. “We are excited to partner with NASCAR driver Greg Biffle and Roush Fenway Racing as part of our campaign to help America come together in support of our First Responders,” said Carl Sweat, CMO of Hooters. “Our First Responders risk a great deal to protect and serve us every day and we are all safer because of their sacrifices. Hooters is proud to recognize First Responders and join Andrew Collier in creating a National First Responders Day to honor them all.”
    Hooters is expressing its thanks to our Nation’s First Responders by treating them to a free entr�e. On Tuesday September 20, all First Responders can select an item from a special menu when they present a valid organization ID at any Hooters location across the nation. Biffle is no stranger to finding victory lane at Darlington Raceway. Biffle has two Sprint Cup wins at the track, two poles, has earned three top-five and six top-10 finishes over his 15 starts at the 1.366-mile track. Biffle has led 718 laps at Darlington, the most laps he led at any track on the Sprint Cup circuit.(RFR), see images of the scheme on the #16 Team Schemes page (8-23-2016)
  • Cassill Pays Tribute to J.D. McDuffie with Darlington Throwback: Landon Cassill will enter Darlington Raceway’s Southern 500 in a car that will honor the memory of J.D. McDuffie, the scrappy but respected independent racer who competed for 28 years in the Sprint Cup Series before losing his life in a crash at Watkins Glen International. Cassill unveiled the throwback paint scheme of the #38 Ford during a Facebook Live broadcast on NASCAR’s Facebook page. The blue and gold scheme replicates a design McDuffie drove in the 1970s and 80s. McDuffie sponsors Rumple Furniture and Bailey Excavating will be featured on the car as part of the tribute during the Sept. 4 race. Despite being an independent owner/driver without the resources of a larger team, McDuffie competed in 653 Cup races, collecting 106 top-10 finishes and a pole position, and finished in the top 20 in points 14 times in his career. Even though he holds the record for making the most starts without ever reaching Victory Lane, he won the respect of fans and fellow competitors in the sport. A 52-year-old McDuffie was on Lap 5 of the 1991 race at Watkins Glen when a mechanical failure resulting from contact with another car sent him into the Turn 5 tire barrier without brakes. He died instantly. Cassill and Front Row Motorsports are proud to pay tribute to a competitor who was known for his blue-collar ethic.
    “J.D. was a guy who just kept scrapping, week after week, and earned a lot of good finishes as a result,” Cassill said. “Bob Jenkins likes to say that Front Row Motorsports is the team that does more with less. You can definitely say that J.D. McDuffie did the same thing, and we’re proud to honor his memory at Darlington.” The Darlington Raceway event will celebrate the decade spanning 1975 to 1984 at this year’s race with throwback paint schemes on all 40 entries.(Front Row Motorsports), see images of the scheme on the #38 Team Schemes page (8-23-2016)
  • Hornish to fill in for McDowell in #95 for practice & qualifying at MIS: Circle Sport – Leavine Family Racing (CSLFR) announced that Sam Hornish Jr. will fill in for Michael McDowell on Friday and Saturday during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race weekend at Michigan International Speedway. McDowell is scheduled to race in the NASCAR XFINITY Series at Road America for Richard Childress Racing on Friday and Saturday. He will then travel to Michigan International Speedway and drive the #95 Thrivent Financial Chevy on Sunday in the Pure Michigan 400 for Circle Sport.(Leavine Family Racing)(8-23-2016)
  • Otter Pops to sponsor Jeffrey Earnhardt at Darlington: After a twenty-year hiatus, Otter Pops, the delicious and fun freezer pops “like no otter,” re-enter the world of auto racing at the Bojangles’ Southern 500 race at the Darlington Raceway. Rookie Jeffrey Earnhardt will be driving the Otter Pops-sponsored car at NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event. The Bojangles’ race is a “throwback race” and Earnhardt’s Otter Pops car will be decked out in a blue and yellow color scheme matching his grandfather Dale Earnhardt Sr’s, iconic racecar sponsored by Wrangler. “I’m really excited to have Otter Pops joining us at Darlington. I’ve been eating them since I can remember and you can’t help but smile when you’re eating an Otter Pop!” said Jeffrey Earnhardt. “It’s hot this summer so I’m happy to have them being part of our team and look forward to eating a bunch of them at Darlington.(BusinessWire), see and image of the scheme on the #32 Team Schemes page (8-23-2016)
  • Aspen Dental returns to sponsor Patrick at Michigan: As the Sprint Cup Series visits Michigan this weekend, Aspen Dental returns as the primary sponsor of Danica Patrick’s #10 Chevy. Sunday’s race marks the third of four events (also Charlotte in Oct) where Aspen Dental will serve as the primary sponsor on Patrick’s racecar this season. In addition, Aspen Dental is an associate sponsor on the #10 Chevrolet for all non-primary races. While Patrick’s #10 Chevy will be blue and silver this weekend in Michigan, her car will also feature the names of more than 500 U.S. veterans. Aspen Dental dentists and teams from Maine to Washington – and hundreds of dental practices in between – volunteered their time and talents to give back to veterans in their communities during one, big “Day of Service” on Saturday, June 25. As part of the Healthy Mouth Movement, a community-giving initiative which provides dental care for veterans, it marked the third annual “Day of Service,” during which nearly 400 participating Aspen Dental offices donated more than $2.1 million dollars in dentistry in a single day, empowering more than 4,000 veterans with a healthy smile. Aspen Dental will also host five veterans and their guests as VIPs for Sunday’s race at the 2-mile Michigan track. In addition to the festivities in Michigan, Aspen Dental Management, Inc., recently announced it will be giving 1,000 veterans and guests the opportunity to be honored with a special VIP experience at the upcoming Sprint Cup Series Bank of America 500 Oct. 8 in Charlotte in a celebration of service and support of access to dental care. Beginning Aug. 29, veterans can visit www.Smile4YourService.comand sign up to attend the race and enjoy a one-of-a-kind experience as Aspen Dental will honor their selfless service to our country and bring attention to the fact that many unfortunately do not receive the dental care they desperately need and deserve.(SHR), see images of the car/scheme on the #10 Team Schemes page (8-24-2016)
  • Lap Leaders after 23 races:
    Driver, Laps Led
    1) #18-Kyle Busch, 1,242
    2) #78-Martin Truex Jr, 990
    3) #4-Kevin Harvick, 957
    4) #19-Carl Edwards, 741
    5) #20-Matt Kenseth, 469
    6) #2-Brad Keselowski, 373
    7) #22-Joey Logano, 327
    8) #41-Kurt Busch, 234
    9) #48-Jimmie Johnson, 229
    10) #11-Denny Hamlin, 202
    34 drivers have led at least one lap
    Through August 21
  • Erwin returns as crew chief at Penske: Team Penske has confirmed it has replaced Brian Wilson as the crew chief of its #22 Xfinity team with Greg Erwin, who previously held the role. The swap, which motorsport.com first reported, comes after 22 races this season and with 11 left. The #22 team has struggled under the leadership of Wilson, who succeeded Erwin in 2016 as he moved into an overseeing role on the team. Driven by Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, and Ryan Blaney, the #22 car has yet to win this season. It has not won since Keselowski went to victory lane at Texas Motor Speedway last November. Wilson will stay with the team and crew chief the #12 when it’s ran at Charlotte Motor Speedway later in the season.(NBC Sports)(8-23-2016)
  • NASCAR National Series Tracks to Offer Free Youth Ticketing for XFINITY & Truck Series Races in 2017: NASCAR announced exclusively via Facebook Live that beginning in 2017, kids ages 12 and younger will be admitted free to all NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races. The announcement was made during an all-kids press conference hosted at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C. The press conference also kicked off Kids Drive NASCAR, a week-long, youth initiative leading up to this weekend’s national series races at Michigan International Speedway and Road America. Many race tracks already have in place a bevy of offerings geared towards youth, including youth autograph sessions, youth garage tours, kids’ clubs and designated kids’ zones. Numerous tracks also have employed various ticket platforms focused on youth, but this new program marks the first time where tracks will institute a consistent offer wherever NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races take place.
    Beginning in 2017, the number of complimentary tickets available for children 12 and younger will vary from venue to venue for every adult ticket purchased. Specific track policies and procedures, including sections in which the tickets are offered, will still apply and may differ for each track as well in an effort to welcome and accommodate as many families as possible. This program is another example of NASCAR-sanctioned tracks improving the at-track experience with the ultimate goal of delivering additional value and an unparalleled live-event experience for fans.(NASCAR)(8-23-2016)
  • AM Racing, WinTron partner: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) team AM Racing and ARCA Championship team, Win-Tron Racing, have joined forces for the remainder of the 2016 and for the full 2017 racing seasons.The newly formed partnership leverages the cost efficiencies associated with shared assets and resources while exploiting the knowledge and experience of its two principle members, Kevin Cywinski and Tim Self. The joint effort will deliver cost efficient quality racing programs to selected drivers in both the NCWTS and the ARCA Series. As the owner of Central Texas Speedway located in Kyle, Texas, Self has been involved in the motorsports industry for over fifteen years. Since 2013, Tim Self has acquired a, now successful, 3/8 mile asphalt track and started a new up and coming NASCAR CWTS team, with driver, Austin Wayne Self. The co-branded operation will be based out of Win-Tron’s existing facility in Mooresville, NC, in the motorsports complex. In addition to providing full-time racing programs, the consolidated entity will provide race teams support services such as Logistics, Transporation, Set Up and Pull Down. Win-Tron is currently assembling a two-car program for the 2017 ARCA Series. In addition, AM Racing will field the #22 Toyota Tundra full-time, with a second truck that will run a partial season.(Catchfence)(8-23-2016)
  • Track ‘treatments’ to continue: Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, said Monday on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that what Bristol did is “certainly not the last you’ve seen of that.” Bristol treated its lower groove with a substance similar to what is used on the starting area in drag racing to help tires gain grip. NASCAR said resin was then put on the track after Wednesday’s Camping World Truck Series race and Friday’s Xfinity Series race. Previously, running the lower groove at Bristol proved slower than the top groove. With the additional grip, more cars could run at the bottom and be competitive. The result was two-wide racing. The 20 lead changes in the Sprint Cup race ranked second among most lead changes at Bristol in the last eight races there. NASCAR stated that total green-flag passes in the Cup race totaled 2,454, ranking fourth at the track since the statistic was first kept in 2005. “We’ll go out and do the due diligence and test it and work with Goodyear certainly,” O’Donnell said. “Certainly, we’ll look at this year, but more importantly for 2017.”(NBC Sports)(8-23-2016)


    News from August 22, 2016


     

  • Entry List for the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway is posted, 40 teams/drivers [for 40 spots] are listed, including: #21-Blaney*, #30-Wise*, #32-Earnhardt, #55-Sorenson*, #88-Alex Bowman, #95-McDowell, #98-Whitt*.
    Drivers who are not a Charter team, an Open Team, and must get in via speed: #21-Blaney, #30-Wise, #55-Sorenson, #98-Whitt
    Since only 40 cars are entered, all drivers will make the race, 40 is the maximum.
    * Open Team (no Charter)
    See the full entry list on Jayski.com’s Michigan Entry List
  • Rick Hendrick is pleased with Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s progress UPDATE: Team owner Rick Hendrick made two things abundantly clear during a press conference at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday afternoon to discuss the signing of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series leader William Byron. First, Hendrick had no specific update as to the status of Dale Earnhardt Jr., other than to say that Earnhardt is progressing in his recovery from concussion-like symptoms and wants to return to the #88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet as soon as possible. “Dale looks great,” Hendrick said. “I had lunch…he and the road crew went to lunch on Wednesday – and I think you’ve seen the (video) of him playing basketball. We are taking extra effort with the doctors, making sure he’s going to be 100%. He’s got a doctor’s appointment next week. He’s doing great, and he wants to get back in the car. Beyond that, I don’t know anything to tell you about him.”
    Second, Hendrick stressed that the signing of Byron to drive for JR Motorsports in the NASCAR XFINITY Series next year was not a reaction to the uncertainty of Earnhardt’s timetable for a return to racing. “William has nothing to do with Dale at all,” Hendrick said. “William has all to do with our future, down the road. What’s going to happen three to five years from now, nobody knows.” Hendrick confirmed that, if Earnhardt is unable to compete next weekend at Michigan, Jeff Gordon will not be in the #88 Chevy because of a prior commitment. If Earnhardt is not cleared to drive, Alex Bowman will fill seat for a second time, having driven in Earnhardt’s stead at New Hampshire in July.(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-21-2016)
    UPDATE – No announcement about a driver for MIS before Wednesday: Hendrick 88 Team tweeted this: “We don’t expect to make an announcement regarding @MISpeedway before Wednesday afternoon.”(Hendrick 88 Team Twitter)(8-22-2016)
  • Kurt Busch’s record lead lap streak is over: #41-Kurt Busch, lined up second for a lap-372 restart in Sunday’s rain-delayed Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol. Coming off turn two, he passed #22-Joey Logano for the lead. However, Busch got loose in front of Logano, and contact between the two set off an 11-car incident that would see the 2004 Sprint Cup champion’s historic streak of lead-lap finishes end at 22 races. “I think I just missed the bottom groove by a few inches, got loose, and the wreck was on,” Busch said. “The way that our Monster Energy/Haas Automation Chevrolet was restarting it felt comfortable, it felt good. That inside with the rosin and the VHT, if you don’t hit it exactly right you lose a lot of time. I tried to make up for it and got loose. I feel really bad for the Monster Energy/Haas Automation guys. We had a win in our sights, and I just drove the car at 101 percent instead of 99.” The damage to the #41 Monster Energy/Haas Automation Chevy was deemed too severe to repair, leaving Busch with a 38th-place result and his first did not finish (DNF) since Kansas Speedway in Kansas City on Oct. 5, 2014.(SHR)(8-22-2016)
  • Stenhouse Jr. ties career best finish: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. drove his #17-Bryan Clauson Fastenal tribute Ford to a second-place finish after overcoming a two-lap deficit and a speeding penalty on pit road. The second-place finish tied his career best finish of second at Bristol in 2014. “It wasn’t from a lack of hard work and being lucky a few times,” Stenhouse said. “We really wanted to get this Bryan Clauson tribute car in victory lane. It just wasn’t meant to be today. We made our car a lot faster throughout the race and came from two laps down to get back on the lead lap. We missed some wrecks and gave it all we had. I thought we were matching the No. 4 car there lap for lap, but he got away from us and we had to restart sixth there on that last restart, but it was an honor to drive this car. This place was pretty packed last night so thanks to all the fans and thanks to all the fans that were able to stay around. I thought the track was really good. You could run the bottom. You could run the top. We just wanted one more spot.”(RFR)(8-22-2016)
  • Bristol Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 2016 Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Saturday’s and Sunday’s race (postpone and delays due to weather). Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 7:55 PM on Saturday, then stopped at 8:09 PM due to rain. I restarted at 8:55 PM, then stopped at 9:17 PM; restarted again at 10:42 PM, then stopped completely on Saturday at 10:52 PM. On Sunday, I began recording times at 4:30 PM, then stopped at 7:16 PM for more rain; then restarted again at 7:24 PM. Stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 7:38 PM (all times are EDT). NBCSN and CNBC were the broadcast teams for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 101
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 45
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 80
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 42
    Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 21
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 18
    Number of times NBCSN/CNBC utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 4
    Start time on Saturday to record race/commercial periods: 7:55 PM
    Stop time for rain delay: 8:09 PM
    Restart time: 8:55 PM
    Stop time for rain delay: 9:17 PM
    Restart time: 10:42 PM
    Stop time for rain delay: 10:52 PM
    Start time on Sunday to record race/commercial periods: 4:30 PM
    Stop time for rain delay: 7:16 PM
    Restart time: 7:24 PM
    Race end: 7:38 PM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 226
    Minutes of race broadcast: 188
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 38
    Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 9
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of ‘mystery cautions’ (debris not shown): 0
    Total race brdcst time 188 Total comm. brdcst time 38
    See past races, more info on the commercials with links at CawsnJaws.com.(8-22-2016)
  • Kyle Busch wrecks, not happy with #46 team: #18-Kyle Busch was involved in a multi-car wreck when a part broke on his car while running 2nd at Bristol Motor Speedway on lap 357. Busch led a race high 256 laps. His comments:
    Q) What broke to end your race?
    Kyle Busch: “I don’t know. It’s a shame. The last few times we’ve been here, we’ve had really fast M&M;’s Toyota Camrys and we haven’t been able to finish. We’ve been having parts failures here, so something we’ve got to address and fix. I’m really tired of losing races here with parts falling apart, so they’ll hear about it on Tuesday. But the person that’s really the biggest moron out there is the spotter of the 46 and the driver of the 46 (Michael Annett). I’ve been wrecking for half a lap and they just come on through and clean us out. That’s stupid, so I don’t know – frustrating day. Let’s go home.”
    Q) Did a part eventually break?
    Busch: “It finally did break and it was breaking, but it finally did break and I couldn’t hold onto it there and it spun out and then spun out the wrong way and it’s frustrating. We’ve had really, really fast race cars here. The guys do a great job setting them up, but, man, we’ve got parts failures, you know? You can’t have parts failures in this business. That’s stupid. My Camrys have been fast. We’ve just got to stop making stupid mistakes that take us out of races and beyond that the 46 (Michael Annett) spotter needs fired and the damn driver too. He’s an idiot. I’ve been wrecking for half a lap and they come through and clean us out. I mean, there’s plenty of room to miss me. Everybody else seemed to be able to do a good job of it.”(Toyota Racing)
    Allgaier’s comments on the wreck: Justin Allgaier, who subbed for an ill Michael Annett in the #46 Pilot Flying J / Battle of Bristol Chevy comments on what happened in the wreck:
    Allgaier: “Well from my point of view we got done in the corner. I was trying to let the leaders go as best I could. We were a couple laps down right there and let them go. The #22 (Joey Logano) ducked in front of me getting into (Turn) 1 and I had to jam on the brakes pretty hard. I got really loose and I was just trying to catch it. That is when the spotter was telling me that the #18 (Kyle Busch) was spinning and he kept rolling down the hill so at first I committed to go below him because I was already on the bottom and then he was still coming down the hill so I tried to go out around the outside of him and unfortunately I just didn’t make it. The #22 was right there and just really a shame. I hate it for these guys. This Pilot Flying J #46 team they did a good job all day. We weren’t up there battling for the lead, but we had a good solid day going. I just cost us a decent finish. Thanks to them for letting me drive the car today. Sorry to Kyle (Busch) that is the worst possibly scenario when the leader spins out and you hit them. Just really frustrating.” (Team Chevy)(8-22-2016)
  • Vector Security to sponsor DiBenedetto at Michigan: BK Racing announced that Vector Securitywill be the primary sponsor of Matt DiBenedetto’s #83 Vector Security Toyota at Michigan in August. Vector Security is a leader in the security industry, providing intelligent security and home automation solutions to more than 300,000 homes and businesses in North America. Vector Security is ranked as one of the top home security system providers in the United States. “We are thrilled to announce our partnership with Matt DiBenedetto and the BK Racing team, as they share in our passion of exceptional performance,” said Michael Grady, Executive Vice President of Vector Security. “NASCAR is best known for its passionate fan base and for creating once-in-a-lifetime experiences for their fans. We look forward to seeing the #83 circle the track in red, white and blue.”(BK Racing)
    AND BK Racing has announced that Weaver Media will be an associate sponsor on Matt DiBenedetto’s #83 Toyota at Michigan. Weaver Media sponsored BK Racing’s other NSCS entry, the #23 Toyota of David Ragan, at Michigan in June. Weaver Media is a full-service experiential marketing company specializing in creating attention-grabbing display advertising and new media opportunities. Weaver Media accomplishes this with unique applications of banners, adhesives and sign materials to catch consumers’ eyes and their attention. They pride themselves on utilizing a facility’s existing structure as the canvas for custom designs.(BK Racing), see an image of the scheme on the #83 Team Schemes page (8-22-2016)
  • XFINITY Entry List: There are 41 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s Road America 180 at Road America. A few notes:
    Michael McDowell will drive the #2 for Childress;
    Alon Day will drive the #13 for Carl Long;
    The TriStar #14 is TBA;
    Scott Heckert will drive the Rick Ware #15;
    Owen Kelly is entered in the Joe Gibbs #18;
    Alex Tagliani will drive the #22 for Penske;
    The Rick Ware #25 is TBA;
    Nic Hammann will drive the Mike Harmon #74; Kenny Habul returns to the JRM #88;
    The #90 is TBA;
    Stanton Barrett is entered in the #99.(8-22-2015)
    See the complete list on the Road America entry list page.
  • Tracks to offer Free Youth Ticketing for XFINITY & Truck Series Races in 2017: NASCAR announced that beginning in 2017, kids ages 12 and younger will be admitted free to all NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races. The announcement was made during an all-kids press conference hosted at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C. The press conference also kicked off Kids Drive NASCAR, a week-long, youth initiative leading up to this weekend’s national series races at Michigan International Speedway and Road America. Many race tracks already have in place a bevy of offerings geared towards youth, including youth autograph sessions, youth garage tours, kids’ clubs and designated kids’ zones. Numerous tracks also have employed various ticket platforms focused on youth, but this new program marks the first time where tracks will institute a consistent offer wherever NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races take place. Beginning in 2017, the number of complimentary tickets available for children 12 and younger will vary from venue to venue for every adult ticket purchased. Specific track policies and procedures, including sections in which the tickets are offered, will still apply and may differ for each track as well in an effort to welcome and accommodate as many families as possible.(NASCAR)(8-22-2016)
  • Hammann returning to the #74 at Road America: Mike Harmon Racing announced that Nicolas Hammann will attempt his second start in the Xfinity Series on August 27 in the Road America 180 fired up by Johnsonville at his home track, Road America, in the #74 Mike Harmon Racing Dodge Challenger. Hammann, from Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, and currently a student at UNC Charlotte, was the 2014 North American Nissan GT Academy winner. Hammann’s experience includes: karting, SCCA road racing, endurance racing in a Nissan GTR GT3, the IMSA Continental Tire series in a Nissan 370Z, and the Nissan Micra Cup series. Sponsors include: Richfield, Wisconsin-based Quest Engineering Inc., a custom cabinet and closest manufacturer; Green Bay, Wisconsin-based Trudell Performance, a leader in road, track, and off-road performance mods and parts; and Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin-based Northwoods Shelby Club.(Mike Harmon Racing), see an image of the car on the #74 team paint scheme page.(8-22-2016)
  • Truck Series Entry List: There are 31 trucks on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s Careers for Veterans 200 at Michigan International Speedway. A few notes:
    The #6 is TBA;
    Todd Peck is in the #07;
    Grant Enfinger is in the #24;
    Reed Sorenson is in the #49;
    Cody Coughlin is in the #51;
    Enrique Contreras in the #71;
    (8-22-2016)
    See the complete list on the Michigan entry list page.
  • Lixar to sponsor Gallagher in Canada: GMS Racing announced that Lixar, a technology company driven by mobile and data science innovation, will serve as a primary sponsor on Spencer Gallagher’s #23 Chevy Silverado for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park on Sept. 4, 2016. Lixar creates enterprise-level connected product platforms and mobile to everything software solutions. With an air, auto, Telco and emerging tech sector focus, Lixar specializes in developing end-to-end mobile innovation that leverages data science, IoT, proximity awareness and cloud technology expertise. Earlier in the year, the Ottawa-based organization announced a multi-year partnership with NASCAR as their preferred technology partner. Lixar will work with NASCAR to enhance guest experience at national series events..(See an image of the truck on the #23 Team Paint Schemes page)(GMS Racing)(8-22-2016)
  • United States Army Chorus Quartet to sing national anthem at MIS: The United States Army Chorus Quartet will sing the national anthem prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway. The chorus will also sing the national anthem prior to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Careers for Veterans 200 race on Saturday. The U.S. Army Chorus Quartet’s rendition of the national anthem will follow pre-race and driver introductions both days. Fans will want to be sure to be in their seats for “The Star-Spangled Banner.” The U.S. Army Chorus Quartet has performed across the country and at some of the most prestigious locations. The rendition is sure to be an unforgettable performance. The U.S. Army Chorus Quartet is celebrating its 60th anniversary in 2016. The group is celebrating with concerts that include a reunion of past members, many of whom have had successful careers in music education and as soloists on Broadway and opera stages around the world. The U.S. Army Chorus Quartet was established in 1956 and maintained a reputation of excellence in the performance of male choral literature. Currently, the U.S. Army Chorus Quartet is one of the only professional male choruses. Beyond the traditional military music and patriotic standards, the U.S. Army Chorus Quartet covers a broad spectrum which includes pop, Broadway, folk and classical music. The Army Chorus performs frequently at the White House, the Vice President’s Residence, the U.S. Capitol and the State Department.
    Michigan International Speedway’s own Lisa Bascom will perform the Canadian National Anthem prior to both the Pure Michigan 400 and Career for Veterans 200. She will keep with the track’s tradition in recognizing its Canadian guests.
    In addition, two F-16s from the 180th Fighter Wing, Ohio Air National Guard will perform a flyover at the conclusion of the National Anthem before the Pure Michigan 400.(MIS)(8-22-2016)
  • Michigan track surface receiving extra prep work before race: Michigan International Speedway is doing some extra preparation to its track surface before the return of NASCAR action next weekend. The speedway has been utilizing a “tire dragger” – which is dragged along the surface to help apply extra rubber – since the beginning of the week and plans to continue to use it through Tuesday of next week. The tire machine is being run every day for eight hours a day, officials said. It’s the same device used by Kentucky Speedway after its repave and Bristol after it “polished” the lower racing groove. “We elected to do it because we work closely with and listen to NASCAR and the experts who drive the track – the drivers, who say the racing will get that much better when the top groove gets rubbered in and widens out,” said Sammie Lukaskiewicz, the speedway’s vice president of marketing and communications. “It’s fast here, as you know. So having a wider groove will allow cars to pass each other and allow three-, four- and five-wide passing.”(Motorsport)(8-22-2016)


    News from August 21, 2016


  • Harvick wins Bristol: #4-Kevin Harvick won the rain delayed Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway for his 2nd win of the season, 2nd win at Bristol and 33rd career win. Harvick came from the 24th starting spot to win, the deepest in the field a Bristol winner has started since Dale Earnhardt Jr. took the checkered flag from 30th in the 2004 Night Race. The race was was suspended because of rain after 48 laps on Saturday night and resumed on Sunday after showers blew through the area by late afternoon.
    Harvick had his team owner, #14-Tony Stewart, join him in doing donuts and celebrating the victory on the frontstretch.
    #17-Stenhouse Jr. (ties his career best finish) finished 2nd followed by #11-Hamlin, #3-Dillon, #34-Buescher, #19-Edwards, #48-Johnson, #1-McMurray, #47-Allmendinger and #22-Logano.
    #18-Busch led the most laps, 256 of 500, before crashing out on lap 357 finishing 39th.
    #34-Buescher’s 5th place finish moves him into the top 30 of drivers points and eligible for the Chase.
    There were 20 lead changes among 8 drivers and 9 cautions for 106 yellow flag laps and 3 red flags for rain.
    The average speed was 77.968 mph.
    See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and more [NOTE: money/winnings are no longer reported] at:
    Unofficial Race Results page (pdf)
    Lap Summary Report (pdf)
    Penalty Report (pdf)
    Pit Stop Times (pdf)
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Bristol Race & Points Report (pdf).(8-21-2016)
  • Race Fast Facts – Bristol Motor Speedway:
    #4-Kevin Harvick won the 56th Annual Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race, his 33rd victory in 561 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his second victory and 18th top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his second victory and 15th top-10 finish in 32 races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (second) posted his fourth top-10 finish in eight races at Bristol Motor Speedway. It is his fifth top-10 finish in 2016.
    #11-Denny Hamlin (third) posted his 10th top-10 finish in 22 races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    #34-Chris Buescher (fifth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    #4-Kevin Harvick leads the point standings by 27 points over #2-Brad Keselowski.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(8-20-2016)
  • 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup CHASE Standings:
    [after Bristol, race 23 of 36, 16 drivers for the Chase]
    Set by most wins, then by points standing
    1) #2-Keselowski [4 wins], 2nd in driver points
    2) #18-Busch [4], 6th in driver points
    3) #4-Harvick [2], 2nd
    4) #19-Edwards [2], 4th
    5) #11-Hamlin [2], 7th
    6) #48-Johnson [2], 9th
    7) #20-Kenseth [2], 10th
    8) #41-Busch [1], 3rd
    9) #22-Logano [1], 5th
    10) #78-Truex, Jr. [1], 8th
    11) #14-Stewart [1], 27th
    12) #34-Buescher [1], 30th
    no wins, in by drivers points standings
    13) #3-Dillon, 11th in drivers points, 55 ahead of 17th
    14) #24-Elliott, 12th, +47
    15) #1-McMurray, 13th, +42
    16) #31-Newman, 14th, +35
    no wins, not in the Chase
    17) #6-Bayne, 15th, -35 out of 16th
    18) #42-Larson, 16th, -39
    19) #5-Kahne, 17th, -39
    20) #47-Allmendinger, 18th, -58pts
    (8-21-2016)
  • 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Driver Points (not CHASE) Standings:
    [after Bristol, race 23 of 36]
    1) #4-Harvick [2], 762
    2) #2-Keselowski [4 wins], 735, -27
    3) #41-Busch [1], 692, -70
    4) #19-Edwards [2], 689, -73
    5) #22-Logano [1], 684, -78
    6) #18-Busch, [4], 674, -88
    7) #11-Hamlin, 659, -103
    8) #78-Truex Jr. [1], 630, -132
    9) #48-Johnson [2], 612, -150
    10) #20-Kenseth [2], 604, -158
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and
    Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf)
  • Lucky Dogs – Who got a lap back on each caution at Bristol: (and their finish)
    Caution 1: #15-Bowyer, 31st
    Caution 2: #23-Ragan, 21st
    Caution 3: #95-McDowell, 19th
    Caution 4: #16-Biffle, 16th
    Caution 5: #43-Almirola, 14th
    Caution 6: #17-Stenhouse Jr., 2nd
    Caution 7: #11-Hamlin, 3rd
    Caution 8: #44-Scott, 18th
    Caution 9: #83-DiBenedetto, 17th
    (8-21-2016)
  • Race Coverage of the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is re-scheduled for Sunday, August 21, 2016.
    Television (TV): CNBC at 4:30 pm/et.
    RadioPerformance Racing Network (PRN) and Sirius XM Satellite NASCAR Radio 90
    Twitter race updates/rundowns JAYSKI.com Twitter
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs: none scheduled
  • Rain Postpones Bristol race to Sunday UPDATES – Restarted: the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway has been postponed due to rain and will run Sunday, August 21 at 1:00pm/et. The race will be televised on CNBC (NOT NBCSN, check local listings).
    The race will resume where it stopped: lapped 48.
    AND Bristol Motor Speedway teased its race fans with a brief taste of side-by-side action on Saturday night, before persistent storms halted the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race after 48 laps and forced postponement of the finish until Sunday afternoon. The race will resume at 1:00pm/et Sunday and will be broadcast on CNBC.
    #19-Carl Edwards led the field to green on Saturday but surrendered the top spot to Joe Gibbs Racing teammate #11-Denny Hamlin on the opening lap, as Hamlin sped around the outside through the first two corners. Before the first of two heavy storms hit on Lap 38 and forced the cars to pit road, Hamlin, Sunoco Rookie of the Year points leader #24-Chase Elliott and #18-Kyle Busch all had spent time at the front of the field. Busch passed Elliott for the lead on Lap 23, as drivers were able to find speed in both the inside and outside lanes of the .533-mile high-banked concrete short track. After a red-flag period of 1 hour, 24 minutes, 4 seconds, during which track drying was completed, Busch led the field for 10 more laps under caution, but another hard rain hit the track before the race could restart. That left 452 laps still to be completed when the race resumes on Sunday. (NASCAR Wire Service)
    WEATHER: as of 4:43pm/et, rain has stopped, and the race was green flagged at lap 59.
    Some weather forecasts for the National Weather Service as of 4:10pm/et:
    Sunday evening: Partly cloudy. Patchy fog after midnight. Lows in the upper 50s. Light winds.
    see many weather links on the Bristol Race Info page
    Twitter race updates/rundowns JAYSKI.com Twitter
  • Rick Hendrick is pleased with Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s progress: Team owner Rick Hendrick made two things abundantly clear during a press conference at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday afternoon to discuss the signing of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series leader William Byron. First, Hendrick had no specific update as to the status of Dale Earnhardt Jr., other than to say that Earnhardt is progressing in his recovery from concussion-like symptoms and wants to return to the #88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet as soon as possible. “Dale looks great,” Hendrick said. “I had lunch…he and the road crew went to lunch on Wednesday – and I think you’ve seen the (video) of him playing basketball. We are taking extra effort with the doctors, making sure he’s going to be 100%. He’s got a doctor’s appointment next week. He’s doing great, and he wants to get back in the car. Beyond that, I don’t know anything to tell you about him.”
    Second, Hendrick stressed that the signing of Byron to drive for JR Motorsports in the NASCAR XFINITY Series next year was not a reaction to the uncertainty of Earnhardt’s timetable for a return to racing. “William has nothing to do with Dale at all,” Hendrick said. “William has all to do with our future, down the road. What’s going to happen three to five years from now, nobody knows.” Hendrick confirmed that, if Earnhardt is unable to compete next weekend at Michingan, Jeff Gordon will not be in the #88 Chevy because of a prior commitment. If Earnhardt is not cleared to drive, Alex Bowman will fill seat for a second time, having driven in Earnhardt’s stead at New Hampshire in July.(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-21-2016)
  • Cope’s Darlington scheme a throwback to his 1990 Daytona 500 win: Making history as one of the biggest upsets in NASCAR history as well as one of the top ten best finishes in Daytona 500 history is the famous #10 Purolator Chevrolet driven by Derrike Cope. Purolator came on board in 1988 with Jim Testa Racing and later in 1990 with Bob Whitcomb Racing. The #10 Purolator Chevrolet won the 1990 Daytona 500 in unforgettable fashion and saw victory lane a few months later at Dover Downs where Cope dominated the field, after coming from a lap down. Cope has driven for a multitude of teams and sponsors including Bobby Allison, Cale Yarborough and the original Skittles and Bojangles car among many well known car schemes, but none more iconic than this one, the 1990 Purolator scheme. For Darlington Throwback 2016, Derrike Cope will be fielding the #70 TO THE POINT APPAREL Chevrolet in the paint scheme of the 1990 #10 Winston Cup Car.(Derrike Cope Racing), see an image of the car on the #70 team paint schemes page.(8-21-2016)
  • Bristol, fans honor Tony Stewart with tribute on Lap 14: #14-Tony Stewart was honored by fans at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday night. Fans at the track were given signs of the #14 by the speedway and asked to hold them up and honor the driver of the car of that number on the 14th lap. Stewart, who is retiring from NASCAR racing after this season, is making his final Sprint Cup start at Bristol. The signs were held up but with so much going on at the track, Stewart said that he didn’t really see the tribute. But that doesn’t mean he didn’t appreciate it.(Sporting News)(8-21-2016)


    News from August 20, 2016


     

  • Rain Postpones Bristol race to Sunday: the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway has been postponed due to rain and will run Sunday, August 21 at 1:00pm/et. The race will be televised on CNBC (NOT NBCSN, check local listings).
    The race will resume where it stopped: lapped 48.
    AND Bristol Motor Speedway teased its race fans with a brief taste of side-by-side action on Saturday night, before persistent storms halted the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race after 48 laps and forced postponement of the finish until Sunday afternoon. The race will resume at 1:00pm/et Sunday and will be broadcast on CNBC.
    #19-Carl Edwards led the field to green on Saturday but surrendered the top spot to Joe Gibbs Racing teammate #11-Denny Hamlin on the opening lap, as Hamlin sped around the outside through the first two corners. Before the first of two heavy storms hit on Lap 38 and forced the cars to pit road, Hamlin, Sunoco Rookie of the Year points leader #24-Chase Elliott and #18-Kyle Busch all had spent time at the front of the field. Busch passed Elliott for the lead on Lap 23, as drivers were able to find speed in both the inside and outside lanes of the .533-mile high-banked concrete short track. After a red-flag period of 1 hour, 24 minutes, 4 seconds, during which track drying was completed, Busch led the field for 10 more laps under caution, but another hard rain hit the track before the race could restart. That left 452 laps still to be completed when the race resumes on Sunday. (NASCAR Wire Service)
    WEATHER: not looking too promising at the start of the race, some forecasts for the National Weather Service as of 11:30am/et:
    Sunday afternoon: Showers and a chance of thunderstorms. Highs in the upper 70s to lower 80s. West winds 5 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 80%.
    Sunday evening: Partly cloudy. A 20% chance of showers in the evening. Lows in the upper 50s. West winds 10 mph or less.
    see many weather links on the Bristol Race Info page
    Twitter race updates/rundowns JAYSKI.com Twitter
  • Race Coverage of the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is re-scheduled for Sunday, August 21, 2016.
    Television (TV): CNBC at 1:00 pm/et.
    RadioPerformance Racing Network (PRN) and Sirius XM Satellite NASCAR Radio 90
    Twitter race updates/rundowns JAYSKI.com Twitter
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs: none scheduled
  • Race Coverage of the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is scheduled for Saturday, August 20, 2016.
    Television (TV): NBCSN at 8:00 pm/et; Pre-Race show at 7:30 pm/et; green flag approx. 8:19pm/et
    RadioPerformance Racing Network (PRN) and Sirius XM Satellite NASCAR Radio 90
    Twitter race updates/rundowns JAYSKI.com Twitter
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs: none scheduled
  • Allgaier to sub for Annett in the #46 at Bristol: Due to flu-like symptoms, Michael Annett will not compete in tonight’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol. Justin Allgaier will start and race the #46 Pilot Flying J Chevy in his place. Allgaier will have to start at the rear of the field due to the driver change.(HSM’s Facebook)(8-19-2016)
  • Bristol Sprint Cup Series Pre-Race Schedule for Saturday, August 20: (eastern time)
    5:15pm: NSCS Driver/Crew Chief Meeting
    6:45pm: NASCAR Foundation Betty Jane France Humanatarian Award Presentation
    7:20pm: NSCS Driver Introductions; Intro/Starting Positions/Outro by: Michael Buffer
    7:54pm: God Bless USA
    8:00pm: Presentation of Colors by: Tennessee Highway Patrol Honor Guard, Nashville, TN
    8:00:20pm: Pledge of Allegiance by Chief Master Sgt. Mark Holling, USAF
    8:00:50pm: Invocation by: Billy Mauldin, President and CEO, Motor Racing Outreach(MRO)
    8:01:30pm: God Bless America by: Danielle Peck, National Recording Artist
    8:02:55pm: National Anthem by MRO Children
    8:04:15pm: Fly-by: 2-T-38s from Langley Air Force Base, VA
    8:11:15pm: Command to start engines: Johnny Morris, Founder, Bass Pro Shops & Bass Pro Store Managers
    8:18:45pm: Start (green flag) of the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race
    (NASCAR.com)
  • Bristol Race Notes & Facts:
    � There have been 111 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Bristol Motor Speedway since the first race in 1961, two races each season.
    � Eight different manufacturers have won in the NSCS at Bristol; led by Chevrolet with 43 victories; followed by Ford (36), Dodge (8), Pontiac (8), Toyota (8), Buick (4), Plymouth (3) and Oldsmobile (1).
    � Junior Johnson leads the series in car owner wins at Bristol with 16; Roger Penske leads the series among active car owners with the most wins at Bristol with 12.
    � Four car numbers have produced eight or more Bristol NSCS wins: #11 – (19 wins) – most recent: Denny Hamlin, 2012; #2 – (12 wins) – Brad Keselowski, 2012; #17 – (eight wins) – most recent: Matt Kenseth, 2006; #3 – (eight wins) – most recent: Dale Earnhardt, 1999
    � 13 of the last 16 NSCS races (81.2%) that have ended under green at Bristol Motor Speedway have a Margin of Victory of less than a second.
    � Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Bristol is the 3/25/2007 race won by Kyle Busch with a MOV of 0.064 second.
    � Two of the 111 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Bristol Motor Speedway have been shortened due to weather conditions; the most recent was the event on 3/31/1996.
    � There has been five green-white-checkered finishes at Bristol – all five were the spring race: 2007 (500/504); 2008 (500/506); 2009 (500/503); 2014 (500/503); 2015 (500/511).
    (NASCAR)
  • Bristol Driver Song Selections: It’s become tradition at Bristol Motor Speedway that Sprint Cup drivers select the songs they walk out on stage to before the race. For the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race, here is the list:
    #1-Jamie McMurray, “Kickstart My Heart” by Motley Crew
    #2-Brad Keselowski, “Tom Sawyer” by Rush
    #3-Austin Dillon, “Country Grammar” by Nelly
    #4-Kevin Harvick, “Good Company” by Jake Owen
    #5-Kasey Kahne, “Record Year” by Eric Church
    #6-Trevor Bayne, “Rocky Top” by Tennessee’s Pride of the Southland Band
    #7-Regan Smith, “State of My Head” by Shinedown
    #10-Danica Patrick, “Maneater” by Nelly Furtado
    #11-Denny Hamlin, “All the Way Up” by Fat Joe
    #13-Casey Mears, “No Sleep Till Brooklyn” by Beastie Boys
    #14-Tony Stewart, “Better Man” by Pearl Jam
    #15-Clint Bowyer, “Born to Boogie” by Hank Williams Jr.
    #16-Greg Biffle, “Trap Queen” by Fetty Wap
    #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., “Shameless” by Garth Brooks
    #18-Kyle Busch, “Welcome to My House” by Flo Rida
    #19-Carl Edwards, “The Weekend” by Brantley Gilbert
    #20-Matt Kenseth, “Seal the Deal” by Volbeat
    #21-Ryan Blaney, “Enter Sandman” by Metallica
    #22-Joey Logano, “On The Road Again” by Willie Nelson
    #23-David Ragan, “Ain’t No Going Down Till the Sun Comes” by Garth Brooks
    #24-Chase Elliott, “Lotta Boot Left to Fill” by Eric Church
    #27-Paul Menard, “We Are An American Band” by Jackyl
    #30-Josh Wise, “Narrow Mouth” by The Early November
    #31-Ryan Newman, “Huntin, Fishin’, Lovin’ Every Day” by Luke Bryan
    #32-Jeffrey Earnhardt, “Fishin in the Dark” by Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
    #34-Chris Buescher, “Bad Reputation” by Adelitas Way
    #38-Landon Cassill, “Famous” by Kanye West
    #41-Kurt Busch, “Living on the Edge” by Aerosmith
    #42-Kyle Larson, “Another Round” by Whitney Morgan & the 78’s
    #43-Aric Almirola, The Outsiders” by Erica Church
    #44-Brian Scott, “Jungle” by X Ambassadors
    #46-Justin Allgaier, “Click, Click, Boom” by Saliva
    #47-AJ Allmendinger, “Remember My Name” by Maino
    #48-Jimmie Johnson, “Ain’t No Man” by the Avett Brothers
    #55-Reed Sorenson, “Take A Little Ride” by Jason Aldean
    #78-Martin Truex Jr., “Great Day to Be Alive” by Travis Tritt
    #83-Matt DiBenedetto, “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift
    #88-Jeff Gordon, “Show Me What You Got” by Jay-Z
    #95-Michael McDowell, “Ice Cream Truck Song” by Ice Cream Truck
    #98-Cole Whitt, “Thunderstuck” by AC/DC
    (NBC Sports / Dustin Long)(8-20-2016)
  • Bristol Applies New Layer of Rosin Coating: Those who arrived on Saturday for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway were witness to a novel sight – a rosin covering the inside of the turns at each end of the track. The compound used was a substance commonly used at dragstrips to increase traction in the take-off area. It is designed to enhance adhesion between tires and the concrete racing surface. A similar coating was applied before Friday’s NASCAR XFINITY Series race at BMS, and the quality of competition drew raves from those watching from the grandstands and on television. NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer Steve O’Donnell explained the process via a tweet: “Track re-applied rosin – first 18 inches above the apron in turns 1-2 and turns 3-4 overnight,” O’Donnell tweeted. “Identical to what we did prior to @NASCAR XFINITY.”(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-20-2016)
  • Chase-clinching scenarios for Bristol: With four races remaining in the regular season, 10 drivers have clinched a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, assuming each start the remaining races. The 10 clinchers:
    #2-Brad Keselowski, #18-Kyle Busch, #19-Carl Edwards, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #20-Matt Kenseth, #4-Kevin Harvick, #41-Kurt Busch, #22-Joey Logano, #78-Martin Truex Jr. and #11-Denny Hamlin.
    Everyone who has a win this season is locked in — except for #14-Tony Stewart and #34-Chris Buescher, both of whom have yet to clinch a top-30 spot.
    A number of drivers who currently have no wins can clinch this weekend, but only if they win at Bristol Motor Speedway and leave the race with at least a 136-point lead over Stewart and Buescher. There’s also the potential for the points leader to be a guaranteed winner after race No. 26 at Richmond, the final regular-season race. If that’s the case, the below drivers would only need to have a 136-point lead over Buescher.
    Possible to clinch:
    Tony Stewart: Could clinch a Top 30 position with help
    Possible to clinch at Bristol with a win:
    #31-Ryan Newman, #24-Chase Elliott, #3-Austin Dillon, #42-Jamie McMurray, #42-Kyle Larson, #6-Trevor Bayne, #5-Kasey Kahne, #21-Ryan Blaney, #47-AJ Allmendinger, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #27-Paul Menard
    Possible to clinch at Bristol with a win plus help:
    #16-Greg Biffle, #10-Danica Patrick, #15-Clint Bowyer, #43-Aric Almirola.(NASCAR.com)(8-20-2016)
  • Logano Looks To Win Third Straight Bristol Night Race: #22-Joey Logano will attempt to win at Bristol for the third straight August in Saturday’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race. The #22 Team Penske driver led the second-most laps in each of his previous two Bristol night race wins. Logano’s 76 laps led trailed #1-Jamie McMurray’s 178 laps led in 2014, while his 176 laps led trailed #18-Kyle Busch’s 192 last season. Coincidentally, McMurray and Busch both finished eighth. In 15 career starts at Bristol, Logano claims two wins, three top fives and five top 10s. He leads active drivers with a 7.6 average start at the Tennessee track. Logano has been on a tear lately with six top-five finishes in his last nine starts, including a runner-up finish in the last NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen. The last driver to win three consecutive Bristol Night Races was Darrell Waltrip from 1981-83 (he won a record-tying seven straight Bristol races, overall, from 1981-1984).(NASCAR)(8-20-2016)
  • Edwards going for season sweep at Bristol: #19-Carl Edwards will attempt to become the first Sprint Cup Series driver to sweep Bristol since his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate #18-Kyle Busch achieved the feat in 2009. Edwards has six top-five and 11 top-10 finishes in 24 career starts there. The four current JGR drivers – Edwards, Kyle Busch, #20-Matt Kenseth and #11-Denny Hamlin – have accounted for 14 wins in the last 22 Bristol races (though some of those victories came while they were with different teams). They will try to snap #22-Joey Logano’s streak of two consecutive wins in the August Bristol night race.(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-20-2016)
  • Stenhouse Jr. and Larson to honor Clauson at Bristol: The outpouring of support for Bryan Clauson continued at Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday, with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and #42-Kyle Larson honoring the memory of their close friend with special helmets and paint schemes. Clauson died at age 27 from injuries suffered during an Aug. 6 accident in the Belleville (Kansas) Midget Nationals. Clauson got his start in NASCAR racing as a development driver for Chip Ganassi Racing, but after 26 starts in the XFINITY series, with a best finish of fifth at Kentucky, he returned to open wheels and established himself as one of the all-time best in USAC competition.
    In Saturday night’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race, both Stenhouse and Larson will wear helmets sporting the initials “BC” in honor of their friend. With the blessing of sponsor Fastenal, Stenhouse’s car will feature a paint scheme reminiscent of the one Clauson ran seven years ago.
    “Bryan was a great friend of Kyle’s and mine,” Stenhouse, 28, said on Friday at Bristol. “I moved to North Carolina, and he was already there. Even though he was younger, I kind of always looked at him as an older brother, because he kind of did everything before I did. He let me move in with him, and we had a lot of fun in North Carolina. He showed me the ropes of stock car racing, and then, obviously, he was the best there was at running sprint cars, so to be able to run his paint scheme. His family is super excited, and we are, too, at our team.” On Aug. 11 at the Knoxville (Iowa) Nationals, Stenhouse led the field on a parade lap in the winged sprint car Clauson was to have driven in the competition. Larson and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Rico Abreu were on hand as competitors during the off week. Tony Stewart and Jeff Gordon were there to support charitable efforts, which included an auction on behalf of the Clauson family on Aug. 12. Gordon flew the Clausons back to Indiana on his plane that afternoon. On Saturday night, Stewart’s sprint car driver, Donny Schatz, was five feet short of his 10th Knoxville Nationals title, finishing second to race-winner Jason Johnson.(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-20-2016)
  • NASCAR to enhance Bristol Sprint Cup race surface: NASCAR announced late Friday night that it will add 18 inches of resin to the lower groove in each of the four corners to enhance Saturday night’s Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway. The substance is intended to give the lower line additional grip to make that groove as competitive as the top groove. “It was a collaboration between the track, (NASCAR) and the industry,” said NASCAR spokesman Kurt Culbert of the decision. “(The resin) seemed to work really well.” While the lower groove was used throughout Friday night’s Xfinity race, the preferred groove was the high line. Still, drivers could run on the lower groove and not lose as much time as previously. The track’s lower groove in the corners was treated before this week. Resin was added after Wednesday night’s Camping World Truck Series race.(NBC)(8-20-2016)
  • Dover extending SAFER barriers and increasing usable space in Cup garage: Dover International Speedway has started two construction projects which will add more than 500 feet of SAFER barriers around the track and increase usable space for NASCAR haulers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage. Both projects are scheduled to be completed in time for the Sept. 30-Oct. 2 NASCAR tripleheader weekend at the Monster Mile, highlighted by the first elimination race of the 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship playoffs on Sunday, Oct. 2.
    Facts on the recent construction are:
    o Approximately 500 feet of Steel And Foam Energy Reduction (SAFER) barriers will be added to the one-mile, high-banked, concrete oval. The outside wall in Turn 2, under the walkover bridge, and the outside wall of Turn 4, entering the frontstretch, will now include SAFER barriers. All of the SAFER barriers will be added to existing walls.
    o The installation companies are Kent Construction of Smyrna, Del., and North Industrial Machine of Hartsville, SC.
    o A 753-foot-long concrete wall separating the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage area from the existing harness racing track is being added. The 10-foot-high wall will stretch from the Infield Media Center to the end of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage, removing the grass hill between the garage area and harness track that was in place.
    o The new construction will allow for additional space for each NASCAR hauler to park in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage, and will create a safer environment in the area.
    o The installation company is Kent Construction of Smyrna, Del.
    “We continue to improve our facility for all parties involved in NASCAR, including drivers, race teams and fans,” Dover International Speedway President and CEO Mike Tatoian said. “Safety is always our top priority and the added SAFER barriers will certainly benefit our competitors. The renovations in the garage will also allow us greater opportunities for space flexibility in the coming years too.” The Sept. 30-Oct. 2 NASCAR weekend includes the NASCAR K&N; Pro Series East race on Friday, Sept. 30, the “Drive Sober 200” presented by the Delaware Office of Highway Safety NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, Oct. 1 and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Sunday, Oct. 2. For tickets or more information, call (800) 441-RACE or visit DoverSpeedway.com.(Dover International Speedway)(8-20-2016)


    News from August 19, 2016


  • Gordon will not race at Michigan: NBC Sports Dustin Long tweeted that Jeff Gordon says he will NOT race the #88 car next week at Michigan because of a prior commitment.
    UPDATE: Jeff Gordon says he will not drive the #88 Chevy for Dale Earnhardt Jr. next weekend at Michigan because of a prior commitment. “I didn’t know I was going to be doing all of this,” Gordon said. Gordon would not say what the commitment was but said he would only be at Michigan on race day. Hendrick Motorsports confirmed that Alex Bowman will drive the #88 at Michigan if Earnhardt is unable to race. Bowman drove for Earnhardt last month at New Hampshire and finished 26th. Earnhardt has not said what his status for Michigan is. Thursday, Earnhardt posted a series of pictures and videos on his Instagram account showing some of the physical and mental exercises he is doing to aid his recovery. Gordon said it’s simple why he’s not driving at Michigan. “I can’t be there all weekend,” he said. Gordon said he would be available to run in the Southern 500 at Darlington if Earnhardt was still unable to be back in the car by the Sept. 4 race.(NBC Sports)(8-19-2016)
  • Edwards wins Bristol pole: #19-Carl Edwards won the Coors Light pole for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway with speed of 131.407mph for his 5th pole of 2016, 4th at Bristol and 21st of his career. Edwards has won three races from the pole in his career in 20 tires, including twice at Bristol. Edwards won from the pole in April at Bristol, leading 276 of 500 laps.
    #11-Hamlin will start 2nd, followed by #18-Busch, #21-Blaney, #20-Kenseth, #24-Elliott, #78-Truex, Jr., #47-Allmendinger, #2-Keselowski, #22-Logano, #88-Gordon and #34-Buescher(career best start).
    #11-Hamlin was also quickest in the second round with a speed of 130.495mph.
    #11-Hamlin was fastest in the first round at 131.668mph, setting a new track record. He starts 2nd.
    Since the maximum of 40 cars entered the race, everyone made the race.
    See round-by-round qualifying results on the Bristol qualifying results page (pdf) and the complete starting lineup on the Bristol Starting Lineup page (pdf).(8-19-2016)
  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway have been made.
    With the field downsized to 40 cars, three pit stalls (21,22,43) have been eliminated, are not in play and don’t count towards driving through more than three pit boxes.
    Pole sitter #19-Edwards chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #11-Hamlin took pit stall 23, the first pit stall on the backstretch pitlane.
    #18-Busch, who starts 3rd took the 11th pit stall, just after the start/finish line.
    The final pit stall was taken by #24-Elliott, who starts 6th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on Jayski.com’s Pit Stall Selection chart.
  • Bristol Pit Rules: Bristol Motor Speedway operates under a plan where one-pit road will be used during pit stops under caution. Currently, Bristol remains the only track in the Sprint Cup Series that utilizes two pit roads with 20 pit stalls on the front stretch and 20 on the backstretch (3 are not used). Teams that pit on the backstretch used to be at a competitive disadvantage. Since the spring 2002 race at Bristol, teams will enter pit road in Turn 2 (the current backstretch pit entrance) drive around down the backstretch and around Turns 3 and 4 and exit in Turn 1. Under green-flag conditions teams will enter and exit pit road under the current two-pit-road scheme.
  • Bristol Motor Speedway – Qualifying Fast Facts:
    #19-Carl Edwards won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 56th Annual Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race with a lap of 14.602 seconds, 131.407 mph.
    This is his 21st pole in 432 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his fifth pole and 18th top-10 start in 2016.
    This is his fourth pole in 25 races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    #11-Denny Hamlin (second) posted his 21st top-10 start of 2016 and his 10th in 22 races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    #18-Kyle Busch (third) posted his eighth top-10 start at Bristol Motor Speedway. It is his 16th in 23 races this season.
    #21-Ryan Blaney (fourth) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    #34-Chris Buescher (12th) will have his highest starting position in 29 career starts.
    #11-Hamlin set the track qualifying record in the first round, 131.668mph.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(8-19-2016)
  • Second Round of Qualifying for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is over, after 10 scheduled minutes.
    #11-Hamlin 130.495
    #20-Kesneth 130.300
    #78-Truex Jr. 130.247
    #21-Blaney 129.842
    #19-Edwards 129.833
    the rest of the top 12: 47 18 88 24 22 2 34;
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to round 3: 3 41 31 48 43 83 5 27 13 6 42 4
    (8-19-2016)
  • First Round of Qualifying for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is over, after 20 scheduled minutes.
    #11-Hamlin 131.668 (track record)
    #18-Busch 131.003
    #22-Logano 130.221
    #20-Kesneth 130.168
    #21-Blaney 130.123
    the rest of the top 24: 5 19 34 41 27 78 88 42 24 6 3 43 48 47 31 4 13 83;
    out of the top 24 and not advancing to round 2: 17 95 14 1 10 44 15 38 7 16 98 55 23 32 46 30
    Drivers who will miss the race: none, as 40 cars were entered for 40 spots
    (8-19-2016)
  • Coverage of Qualifying for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is scheduled for Friday, August 19, 2016 at 5:45pm/et.
    Television (TV): USA Network, 5:30pm/et
    online atJAYSKI.com Twitter
    Radio: Live online at Performance Racing Network (PRN)
    available via live stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: none scheduled
  • Group qualifying under the three-round qualifying format:
    ” Round 1 — All entries will have 20 minutes to post a qualifying time, after which the 24 registering the fastest laps will advance to the second round. Those failing to advance will be sorted based on first-round times in descending order (from fastest to slowest).
    ” Round 2 — The 24 fastest from the first round will have 10 minutes to post a second-round qualifying time, with the 12 fastest advancing to a third round. Those not advancing will earn starting positions 13 through 24 based on time, again in descending order.
    ” Round 3 — The final round will be five minutes in length. The fastest times from this session will determine the first (Coors Light Pole Award) through 12th starting positions.
    There will be a seven-minute break between each round; teams may make adjustments to their entries only during the individual breaks. They will not be allowed to jack the vehicle or raise the hood, and once the car or truck enters the garage, it will no longer be permitted to return to the track for additional qualifying attempts.
  • Happy Hour (final) practice for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is over, after 85 scheduled minutes [with a few rain delays], the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #18-Busch 129.684
    #78-Truex Jr. 129.587
    #20-Kenseth 129.386
    #21-Blaney 129.334
    #11-Hamlin 129.256
    The best 10 Consecutive Lap Avg Speed: #11-Hamlin 127.193mph
    slowest: #55-Sorenson 122.139 & #32-Earnhardt 123.190
    notes: #30-Wise had a right front tire blow, which sent the car into the turn 2 wall, he will go to a backup car.
    the track record is 131.407mph, set by #11-Denny Hamlin on August 21, 2015.
    If NASCAR Sprint Cup Series qualifying gets rained out, the lineup will be set by owner points position, NOT practice speeds.
    See fastest speeds, laps run, best 10 consecutive lap ave on Jayski.com’s Bristol Happy Hour Practice Speeds page (pdf) (8-19-2016)
  • 1st practice for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #18-Busch 128.969
    #11-Hamlin 128.649
    #42-Larson 128.597
    #24-Elliott 128.511
    #43-Almiorla 128.503
    slowest: #55-Sorenson 120.286 & #32-Earnhardt 123.071
    The best 10 Consecutive Lap Avg Speed: #11-Hamlin 126.740mph
    notes: practice started about 5 minutes late as the track was finishing drying the track from over night rain.
    the track record is 131.407mph, set by #11-Denny Hamlin on August 21, 2015.
    NO national TV coverage, BUT available via live stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app, as well as several NBC Sports Regional Networks (CSN New England, CSN Mid Atlantic, CSN Plus-Chicago, CSN Bay Area, CSN Northwest).
    Happy Hour (final) practice is scheduled to run 12:30 – 1:55pm/et, can be viewed via live stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app, and then on USA Network at 1:00pm/et.
    See fastest speeds, laps run, best 10 consecutive lap ave on Jayski.com’s Bristol 1st Practice Speeds page (pdf) (8-19-2016)
  • Bristol Pole Notes & Facts:
    � Fred Lorenzen won the inaugural Coors Light pole with a speed of 79.225 mph in a Ford.
    � 48 different drivers have poles at Bristol, led by Mark Martin and Cale Yarborough with nine each. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with five; followed by Denny Hamlin and Ryan Newman with three each.
    � 10 different drivers have posted consecutive poles at Bristol Motor Speedway; Mark Martin is the only of the 10 to win four consecutive poles at Bristol: Fireball Roberts (swept 1962), Fred Lorenzen (swept 1963), Richard Petty (1967-’68), Bobby Allison (swept 1972), Cale Yarborough (swept 1973; swept 1977; swept 1980), Darrell Waltrip (swept 1981), Geoff Bodine (swept 1986), Mark Martin (swept 1995-1996- all four races; and swept 2009); Rusty Wallace (swept 1998), Jeff Gordon (swept 2002) and Denny Hamlin (fall 2013, spring 2014).
    � Seven different drivers have posted their first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career pole at Bristol. Joey Logano is the only active driver to win his first NSCS career pole at Bristol (03/21/2010).
    � The race winner has started from the pole 24 times (21.6%) – the most productive starting position. The last driver to win from the pole was Carl Edwards (Spring 2016).
    � Six drivers have won from the pole position multiple times: Bobby Allison (1972 twice), Cale Yarborough (1973, 1977 twice, 1980), Darrell Waltrip (1981 twice, 1982), Rusty Wallace (1991, 1993, 1999, 2000), Matt Kenseth (2005, 2015) and Carl Edwards (2008, 2016).
    � 37 of the 111 (33.3%) races at Bristol have been won from the front row: Pole position (24 wins); second-place (13 wins).
    � 65 of the 111 (58.5%) races have been won from a top-five starting position.
    � 89 of the 111 (80.1%) races have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    � Five of the 111 (4.5%) races have been won from a starting position outside the top 20; most recent was Dale Earnhardt Jr. in 2004 – he started 30th.
    � The deepest in the field that a race winner has started is 38th, by Elliott Sadler in 2001.
    � Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Bristol Motor Speedway three times; most recently August 25, 2012.
    (NASCAR)
  • Ty Dillon Says He’s Ready To Move to Cup: For Ty Dillon, Friday’s Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway marks a milestone in the third-generation driver’s NASCAR Xfinity Series career – his 100th start – but it also solidifies his belief he’s ready for a full-time Sprint Cup ride. “I’m ready to make that step (into the Sprint Cup Series),” Dillon said. “I feel confident as a driver that I can go and compete inside the top 10, top 15 in the Sprint Cup Series if I get a full-time gig.” Dillon has driven a limited schedule in the Sprint Cup Series with #95-Circle Sport-Leavine Family Racing and Stewart-Haas Racing (subbing for Stewart in the #14). “I’ve had really good talks and there are a lot of positive things coming,” Dillon said. “I feel really comfortable with where my future is going as far as my goal of being in the Sprint Cup Series; also, being a part of the Xfinity Series, which is important to me, too. I want to continue to run races in the Xfinity Series no matter where I go or what I do.”(RacinToday)(8-19-2016)
  • Earnhardt Jr. shares detail on concussion treatment: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. will miss his fifth consecutive race this week as he recovers from a concussion, and he gave his Instagram followers a peek into his rehab Thursday. Earnhardt posted a series of videos that he said are to help with his balance and gaze stability — the ability to focus on an object in the distance while moving his head. One of the videos shows him doing steps as well as having someone throw a ball at a wall behind him, and then he turns and catches the ball on the rebound. In the post showing some of the physical exercises, Earnhardt wrote: “Simple stuff but it’s really helping.” Other posts included eye charts he is supposed to read while shaking his head — “Bout got them memorized,” he wrote in a post — and in another, he talks about a computerized three-dimensional program, which crosses his eyes and trains his eyes to work together. The results are sent to his doctors online. Earnhardt is expected to see doctors next week, which could determine when he returns to racing. See full article at ESPN.com.(8-19-2016)
  • Lure of fishing draws Truex to Milliken State Park and Harbor: As an avid fisherman, Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota Camry, enjoys anytime he can put a fishing line in the water. On Wednesday (Aug 17th), the fisherman side of Truex was able to appreciate the day along the Detroit River. He was in downtown Detroit at Milliken State Park and Harbor to promote fishing in the state of Michigan and the upcoming Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 28. “I love fishing here,” Truex said. “I am actually going to spend the whole week next week in Michigan just fishing for vacation. I love to fish. I love to fish in Michigan as well.” Truex was immediately impressed by the scenic view along the Detroit River and could not wait to start fishing. But first he had to put his fishing pole down and talk to the media. Then it was finally time to fish and start the fun. He cast his line with Michigan Lt. Governor Brian Calley to see who could catch the biggest fish. Soon fans started to arrive to enjoy a beautiful day along the Detroit River fishing. Truex spent the afternoon talking lures, tackle and fishing experiences with the fans. He even took the fish off the hook when fans caught one. Truex is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys spending his free time with a fishing pole in hand. In fact, he often spends extended time in Michigan for both NASCAR Sprint Cup races at MIS to fish in any of the lakes in the state. But don’t ask him about his favorite fishing locale. He keeps those private so he can get the biggest catch. Michigan is home to world-class freshwater fishing with 3,000 miles of Great Lakes shoreline, more than 11,000 inland lakes, and tens of thousands of miles and rivers and streams. With low licensing fees and a large variety of species to choose from, the fish are always biting in Pure Michigan. Visit www.michigan.org/fishing to learn more. Pure Michigan 400 tickets are on sale at www.MISpeedway.com and 800-354-1010.(MIS)(8-19-2016)
  • Busch not happy with Keselowski after Bristol wreck: NASCAR fans don’t need a reason to pay extra attention when #18-Kyle Busch and #22-Brad Keselowski race for position at any race track. The two rivals are far from friends. So it was of little surprise that they didn’t have the same view of their incident with four laps left in the Xfinity Series Food City 300 Friday night at Bristol Motor Speedway. Busch attempted to pass Keselowski for the lead by using the inside lane, and when he tried to come up in front of him in the upper lane, Keselowski clipped him in the right rear. Busch’s car slapped the fence and then got plowed into from behind by Ty Dillon. As he left his hauler, Busch was asked if he thought that was clean and replied: “He’s a dirty racer.” Keselowski said while he didn’t want to see it end that way, there just wasn’t enough room and he was there in the lane. He said Busch had no choice to slide up because the inside lane wasn’t as good in Turns 3 and 4 as it was in Turns 1 and 2 where Busch initially had made the move to pass. “We race each other hard,” Keselowski said. “That’s what racing is all about. He would have done the same thing if he was in my shoes, I’m 100 percent certain. I guess we’re both dirty racers then by that definition.”(ESPN.com)(8-19-2016)
  • Austin Dillon wins XFINITY race at Bristol: #2-Austin Dillon won the Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway. It is his 8th XFINITY Series win and 2nd of the year. #7-Justin Allgaier finished second, followed by #42-Lyle Larson, #1-Elliott Sadler, #62-Brendan Gaughan, #51-Jeremy Clements (2nd best career finish), #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #11-Blake Koch (ties career best finish), #33-Brandon Jones, and #24-Corey LaJoie (career best finish).
    Pole sitter #20-Erik Jones got into the rear of teammate #19-Daniel Suarez late in the race and wrecked. He finished 33rd.
    After staying out under caution, #2-Brad Keselowski led most of the final 60 laps, but run out of fuel while the race was under caution waiting for the final restart. He finished 12th.
    There were 8 cautions for 54 laps and 16 lead changes among 7 leaders.
    The average speed was 84.827mph.
    Complete results are on the Bristol race results page (pdf).
    (8-19-2016)
  • Bristol XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Austin Dillon(i) won the 35th Annual Food City 300, his eighth victory in 111 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his second victory and 12th top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his first victory and fourth top-10 finish in seven races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    Justin Allgaier (second) posted his seventh top-10 finish in 12 races at Bristol Motor Speedway. It is his 18th top-10 finish in 2016.
    Kyle Larson(i) (third) posted his sixth top-10 finish in seven races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    Brandon Jones (ninth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 51 points over Daniel Suarez.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-19-2016)
  • XFINITY Driver standings following Bristol:
    [12 drivers qualify for the XFINITY Series Chase. 4 more races until the Chase cutoff.]
    1) #1-Elliott Sadler [1 win], 737
    2) #19-Daniel Suarez [1 win], 686, -515
    3) #7-Justin Allgaier, 685, -52
    4) #3-Ty Dillon, 684, -53
    5) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 667, -70
    6) #20-Erik Jones [3 wins], 657, -80
    7) #48-Brennan Poole, 631, -106
    8) #33-Brandon Jones, 627, -110
    9) #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., 574, -163
    10) #16-Ryan Reed, 532, -205
    11) #11-Blake Koch, 499, -238
    12) #39-Ryan Sieg, 487, -250
    Currently outside the Chase:
    13) #4-Ross Chastain, 472, -265, 15 pts out of 12th
    14) #28-Dakoda Armstrong, 471, -266, -16
    15) #51-Jeremy Clements, 465, -272, -22
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(8-19-2016)
  • Erik Jones on XFINITY pole at Bristol: #20-Erik Jones won the pole for tonight’s Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway with a speed of new track record speed of 127.903mph. It is his 7th pole of the season.
    #18-Kyle Busch will start second. The rest of the top 10: #19-Daniel Suarez, #33-Brandon Jones, #2-Austin Dillon, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #42-Kyle Larson, #7-Justin Allgaier, #88-Regan Smith, and #3-Ty Dillon.
    Did Not Qualify: #40-Timmy Hill.
    The first round of qualifying began with light rain at the track, but had to be halted just over 5 minutes in. Qualifying resumed after the track was dried and was completed without any other issues.
    The starting lineup is posted on the Bristol starting lineup page (pdf).(8-19-2016)
  • Bristol Qualifying Notes:
    Erik Jones won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 35th Annual Food City 300 with a lap of 15.002 seconds, 127.903 mph.
    This is his 10th pole in 48 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his seventh pole and 21st top-10 start in 2016.
    This is his third pole in four races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    Kyle Busch(i) (second) posted his 13th top-10 start of 2016 and his 17th in 24 races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    Daniel Suarez (third) posted his fourth top-10 start at Bristol Motor Speedway. It is his 22nd in 22 races this season.
    Erik Jones (first) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-19-2016)
  • Tifft continues to recover: Young Xfinity driver Matt Tifft is ready to start the road back to the track after brain surgery earlier this summer. The 20-year-old Joe Gibbs Racing driver came to Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday to discuss his progress from a craniotomy after he was diagnosed with a slow-growing, low-grade brain tumor. Tifft and his family decided to schedule surgery as quickly as possible. “This is something we couldn’t mess with,” Tifft said. “We couldn’t wait around.” The prognosis was encouraging. Tifft, who has a scar on the right side of his head, said the growth was benign and subsequent tests showed he was not in danger of seizures, a byproduct of some brain tumors. “That was a huge step in the recovery process,” he said. “My brain was functioning at a healthy and safe level.” Now, Tifft’s pointing toward returning to the driver’s seat. He’s got a test session planned in Hickory, North Carolina, testing a late-model stock car like he drove previously. Tifft said he’s eager to test is reaction time and his stamina, things that he’s only slowly recovering. Tifft is unsure what happens after running laps Sunday and how soon it will take him to return to Xfinity racing. He has gotten stronger each day, his fitness increasing as his brain heals. Doctors have said there’s a small chance the tumor could grow once more, but Tifft said it was a “fairly aggressive surgery and they got the most out possible.” He will undergo MRI monitoring every eight weeks of so for a while, then less frequently if there are no setbacks.(Associated Press)(8-19-2016)
  • Wellmont renews contract as exclusive medical provider for BMS: Wellmont Health System has announced its contract renewal with Bristol Motor Speedway and Bristol Dragway. Wellmont will serve as the exclusive medical provider for NASCAR, NHRA and monster truck races as well as test drives on the track. The health system is also expanding its role with a strong presence for the Sept. 10 Pilot Flying J Battle at Bristol football game at the speedway between the University of Tennessee and Virginia Tech. Plus, caregivers will be present for the concert headlined by Kenny Chesney the day before. The support continues a week later with Wellmont providing medical care for the Sept. 17 football game at the speedway between East Tennessee State University and Western Carolina University. The new contract, which continues a relationship that spans about 20 years, reflects the speedway’s growth into a multi-use sports and entertainment facility. Facilities at the speedway include five fan care centers and an infield care center, which treats drivers, crew members and NASCAR officials. Physicians who work in the infield care center must be board-certified in emergency medicine, and all other providers in that facility must have training in emergency care or critical care. The dragway has one care center for spectators and participants in NHRA races, and all medical providers must have the same training and certifications as those who work in the infield care center at the speedway. Dr. Woodard and Parks also work collaboratively with local emergency medical services agencies and WellmontOne Air Transport during all events to assist anyone with illnesses or injuries who might need to be taken to Bristol Regional. WellmontOne, which has been based at the speedway since 2010, can make a round trip from the speedway and dragway to the hospital in 10-15 minutes.(Bristol Herald Couier)(8-19-2016)


    News from August 18, 2016


     

  • TV Info for Bristol August 19-20: As NBC Sports Group’s presentation of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games winds down, the engines of NASCAR rev back into action with back-to-back races under the lights of Bristol Motor Speedway. The NASCAR Sprint Cup series returns on Saturday at 7:30pm/et on NBCSN. NASCAR XFINITY Series racing is scheduled for Friday at 7:30pm/et on USA Network.
    Saturday’s pre-race coverage includes a closer look at the famous speedway that owes its heritage to Olympia. In a feature voiced by Ken Squier, NBC Sports draws comparisons between the Olympics, the greatest test of a man’s physical strength, and NASCAR racing, the greatest test of man and machine. Before the cars roll this weekend, NBC reporter Parker Kligerman ventures up to Colossus to get a closer look at the world’s largest outdoor center-hung four-sided video screen. NBC Sports continues to surround Jeff Gordon as he suits up for his fourth consecutive race in the #88 car as Dale Earnhardt Jr. remains sidelined with a concussion.
    NBC Sports kicks off its Sprint Cup coverage from Bristol on Friday with practice at 10:00am/et, [NO TV] available via live stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app, as well as several NBC Sports Regional Networks (CSN New England, CSN Mid Atlantic, CSN Plus-Chicago, CSN Bay Area, CSN Northwest).
    Happy Hour (final) practice follows at 12:30pm/et streaming on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app with live coverage of practice starting at 1:00pm/et on USA Network. Friday’s Sprint Cup coverage wraps up with qualifying at 5:30pm/et on USA Network.
    Saturday’s race day coverage begins with Countdown to Green at 7:30pm/et, immediately following the conclusion of the Olympic men’s soccer gold medal match on NBCSN (so coverage could be delayed). Race coverage from The Last Great Colosseum begins Saturday at 8:00pm/et. An hour-long on-site post-race show wraps up NBCSN’s coverage at 11:00pm/et (after the race).
    Race announcer Rick Allen calls this weekend’s action alongside analysts Steve Letarte and Jeff Burton. Pre- and post-race coverage is handled by host Krista Voda, and analysts Kyle Petty and Dale Jarrett. Marty Snider, Mike Massaro, Dave Burns and Kligerman report from pit road.(NBC)(8-18-2016)
  • Bristol Driver Notes & Facts:
    � 441 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol; 308 in more than one.
    � NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty leads the series in starts at Bristol with 60. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 46 starts.
    � Joey Logano leads all active series drivers in average starting position at Bristol with a 7.600. Logano and Jeff Gordon (8.022) are the only two active drivers with an avg. starting position inside the top 10.
    � Ryan Newman leads the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Bristol without visiting Victory Lane at 29.
    � Paul Menard (18 starts) leads the series in starts with the fewest DNFs (0) at Bristol.
    � Thirty-three drivers have made their first series career start at Bristol Motor Speedway; including two active drivers – AJ Allmendinger (2007) and Regan Smith (2007).
    � 42 different drivers have won at Bristol, led by Darrell Waltrip (12). Jeff Gordon, Kurt Busch and Kyle Busch each have five wins, the most among active drivers.
    � 12 drivers have won consecutive races at Bristol led by Darrell Waltrip with seven consecutive victories from 1981-1984. The other 11 are Fred Lorenzen (1963-1964 sweep), David Pearson (1968 sweep), Bobby Allison (1972 sweep), Cale Yarborough did it twice (1974 sweep and four straight from 1976-1977), Richard Petty (1975 sweep), Dale Earnhardt also did twice (1985 sweep and 1987 sweep), Alan Kulwicki (1992 sweep), Rusty Wallace (2000 sweep), Kurt Busch (2003 sweep and 2004 spring race), Kyle Busch (2009 sweep), and Brad Keselowski (2011 fall-2012 spring).
    � Five drivers have posted their first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career win at Bristol Motor Speedway: Dale Earnhardt (04/01/1979), Rusty Wallace (04/06/1986), Ernie Irvan (03/25/1990), Elliott Sadler (03/25/2001) and Kurt Busch (03/24/2002).
    � Richard Petty leads the series in runner-up finishes at Bristol with 10; Kevin Harvick leads all active drivers with five; followed by Kyle Busch with three.
    � Darrell Waltrip leads the series in top-three finishes at Bristol with 23 followed Richard Petty with 18. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 11.
    � Darrell Waltrip and Richard Petty lead the series in top-five finishes at Bristol with 26 each. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 17; followed by Matt Kenseth with 13 each.
    � Richard Petty has leads the series in top-10 finishes at Bristol with 37. Jeff Gordon leads the series among active drivers in top-10 finishes with 25; followed by Matt Kenseth (20).
    � Chase Elliott leads the series among active drivers in average finishing position at Bristol with an 4.000.
    (NASCAR)
  • Earnhardt Jr. still recovering, Gordon in the #88 at Bristol: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Chevy for Hendrick Motorsports, will miss his fifth consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event as he continues to recover from a concussion. He was not cleared by physicians to compete in this weekend’s event at Bristol Motor Speedway. Another update will be provided by Hendrick Motorsports next week. Jeff Gordon will continue to drive the #88 Chevy for the fourth race in a row. Gordon has earned five victories at the 0.533-mile short track, placing him in a three-way tie for first among active drivers with #41-Kurt Busch and #18-Kyle Busch.(HMS)(8-18-2016)
  • Waffle House featured on the #43 at Bristol: #43-Aric Almirola will run with Waffle House Powered by Smithfield on the hood of the #43 Ford at Bristol. The last time Almirola had the black and yellow of Waffle House as his primary sponsor, he competed for a win at Richmond in the final race of the 2015 regular season. A win would’ve put Almirola into The Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship, but he was able to drive it home for a solid fourth-place finish, which was his best of the season. The team is hoping the paint scheme will once again bring them good luck and a great finish. This will be the third race in which Smithfield, Waffle House and Richard Petty Motorsports have teamed up on track. Through the three-year partnership, the companies created Waffle House Race for Rewards, an app that allows patrons to earn points by eating at Waffle House and redeem those points for Waffle House merchandise and Smithfield racing gear. This season, fans could redeem 250 Race for Rewards points to have their name featured on the hood of the #43 Smithfield/Waffle House Ford. The Ford Fusion will race at Bristol Motor Speedway with the names of 436 Waffle House Race for Rewards fans on the hood (RPM), see an image of the scheme on the #43 Team Schemes page (8-18-2016)
  • Drive to End Hunger returns to the track, now on the #5: Longtime Hendrick Motorsports partner AARP and its Drive to End Hunger program will adorn Kasey Kahne’s #5 Chevy this weekend at Bristol. This weekend’s race marks the first of two times this season that Drive to End Hunger is the primary partner on the #5. Drive to End Hunger will return for the Nov. 6 race at Texas. On Wednesday, Aug. 24, Kahne will be at the NASCAR Hall of Fame to unveil the #5 LiftMaster Chevy throwback paint scheme for Darlington.(HMS), see an image of the scheme on the #5 Team Schemes page (8-18-2016)
  • Top College Athletes Join NASCAR Drive for Diversity Pit Crew Program: NASCAR and Rev Racing announced nine former college student-athletes selected to participate in the NASCAR Drive for Diversity (D4D) Crew Member Development Program. The new class of participants received invitations to train with Rev Racing following standout performances at the first national D4D pit crew combine in May. Multicultural athletes starring in football, basketball and softball at the college level will receive expert training as tire changers, carriers and jackmen, with the goal of gaining fulltime employment with NASCAR national series race teams. “We’ve assembled a very talented group of athletes who we believe has what it takes to excel on pit road in NASCAR,” said Jim Cassidy, senior vice president of racing operations. “Each D4D participant will benefit from Rev Racing’s best-in-class training program, and we look forward to watching them grow and develop over the next 12 months.”
    This year NASCAR and Rev Racing revamped the crew member scouting process, hosting tryouts at six universities across the country. Eighteen men and women from 12 states and one U.S. territory were selected to compete in the national combine in Concord, N.C. Half earned invitations to join the D4D pit crew program. “We are very excited for the arrival of the new 2016 Drive for Diversity pit crew recruits,” said Max Siegel, owner and CEO of Rev Racing. “With the national combine and recruitment effort this past year, we were able to select the top level of athletic talent. We look forward to training these individuals and placing them along pit road in the national series. Our academy-style approach to training continues to show success year after year; this class will not fall short.”
    Among the new D4D participants are three former football players from the University of Kansas, one of the schools to host tryouts. Appalachian State’s Jeremy Kimbrough, who spent time with the Washington Redskins, and Joshua Tate, an All-American at Clark Atlanta University, are also looking to transition from the gridiron to NASCAR. A pair of female athletes in former Norfolk State, basketball player Brehanna Daniels and former Alcorn State University softball player Breanna O’Leary, will train as tire changers under the tutelage of Phil Horton, Rev Racing’s director of human performance. There are 35 graduates of the D4D Crew Member Development Program currently working in NASCAR. Three alums – Raphael Diaz, Kevin Richardson and Richie Williams – celebrated in Victory Lane as members of Chris Buescher’s pit crew after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver won his first premier series race at Pocono Raceway on Aug. 1. Last November, Diaz and Roush Fenway Racing teammate Mike Russell became the first D4D graduates to win a national series championship when Buescher clinched the 2015 NASCAR XFINITY Series championship.
    The new members of the D4D Crew Member Development Program include:
    First, Last, Hometown, University, Primary Sport
    Brehanna Daniels, Norfolk, Va., Norfolk State University, Basketball
    Kapil Fletcher, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., University of Kansas, Football
    Tedarian Johnson, Jackson, Miss., University of Kansas, Football
    Jeremy Kimbrough, Decatur, Ga., Appalachian State University, Football
    Corey King, Boca Raton, Fla., University of Kansas, Football
    Lamar Neal, Virginia Beach, Va., Norfolk State University, Football
    Breanna O’Leary, Amarillo, Texas, Alcorn State University, Softball
    Jorden Paige, Buffalo, N.Y., Clark Atlanta University, Football
    Joshua Tate, Memphis, Tenn., Clark Atlanta University, Football
    The NASCAR Drive for Diversity program, under the leadership of Rev Racing, supports both crew member and driver development opportunities. Driver graduates include NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Kyle Larson, and NASCAR XFINITY Series drivers Daniel Suarez and Darrell Wallace Jr.(NASCAR)(8-18-2016)
  • Chase Elliott featured in magazine: Chase Elliott’s photo has hit newsstands in Georgia this summer as he graces the cover of Georgia Magazine’s August issue. Earlier this year, Elliott talked with his home state magazine on growing up in Georgia, his parents’ role in his success thus far and racing for Hendrick Motorsports. The Dawsonville, Georgia, native is accompanied in the issue by fellow Georgian athletes Reese Hoffa, Jenny Arthur and two-time Olympic gold medalist Vincent Hancock – all of whom are competing in the Rio Olympics.(HMS)(8-18-2016)
  • Sad News – Josephine Bonnett: Josephine Bonnett, 99, from Hueytown, AL, had been a resident of Self Health and Rehab since 2011. Mrs. Bonnett worked at the Deli at Hills Grocery and later at Winn Dixie until she retired around 1985. She then, with her husband, traveled to many NASCAR races. They were their son, Neil’s greatest fans as he raced on the NASCAR circuit until his death in 1994. She is preceded in death by her husband of 68 years; Lawrence Bonnett. Son; NASCAR driver Neil Bonnett and 13- brother and sisters. Full obituary, guest book and service info at at pattersonfuneralhomes.com (8-18-2016)
  • Sad News – John Cooper: John R. Cooper, a longtime motorsports executive, passed away August 17. Cooper became President of the Daytona International Speedway in December 1987, serving in that capacity until July 1990. Simultaneously, he served as Vice President of Corporate Development for ISC until July 1994. Cooper was a member of ISC’s Board of Directors from 1987 until April 2003, and then was elected Director Emeritus.(ISC)
    See an article about Cooper at the Daytona Beach News Journal (8-18-2016)
  • Mid-Ohio XFINITY TV Ratings: NASCAR Xfinity Series racing from Mid-Ohio earned a 0.6 final rating and 985,000 viewers on USA Network last Saturday, down a tick in ratings and 4% in viewership from last year on NBCSN (0.7, 1.0M) and down a third in both measures from 2014 on ESPN (0.9, 1.5M). As should be no surprise, given the Olympic competition, it was the least-watched Xfinity Series race of the season.(Sports Media Watch)(8-18-2016)
  • New sponsor for McLeod at Bristol: After back-to-back NASCAR XFINITY Series races on road courses, B.J. McLeod is happy to be returning to oval racing with the annual summer race at Bristol Motor Speedway for Friday night’s Food City 300. In the core of a crucial summer stretch of 20 XFINITY Series races in 21 weeks, McLeod returns to the “World’s Fastest Half-Mile” looking to land a rock solid concrete finish for new marketing partner Short Traxs Construction. Founded in 1993 and based in Arkansas, Short Traxs Construction is a family-owned business specializing in all aspects of the roofing industry, including industrial and residential.(McLeod Motorsports)(8-18-2016)
  • Gosselin returns to the #90 at Bristol: Fresh off of a seventh place finish with Andy Lally behind the wheel of the King Autosport machine, Mario Gosselin will be changing from last weekend’s role of crew chief back to driver. Gosselin will be piloting the #90 BuckedUp Apparel, CrashClaimsRUs Chevrolet, in the 35th Annual Food City “300” at Bristol Motor Speedway. “We are proud to bring BuckedUp to Bristol with us once again,” said Gosselin, driver for King Autosport. “With limited resources, our team thrives on tracks such as Bristol where it is more about talent than money. We’ll use the momentum from our top 10 finish last weekend to capitalize on our opportunities this weekend and commemorate the one year anniversary of our partnership with BuckedUp Apparel. They’ve been instrumental in our successes.” Founded in 2005, The BuckedUp “Antlers with Attitude” brand engages the spirit of outdoor enthusiast of all ages. Their customers are brand loyal, and are skilled in their sports. BuckedUp has also found that they are passionate about their families, their friends, and their communities. They want to make a unique statement with their apparel, all while being fashion forward in regards to design, fabric, and message.(Gosselin PR)(8-18-2016)
  • Final XFINITY practice canceled due to rain at the track. There will be no practice tomorrow. Teams will qualify at 3:15pm/et.(8-18-2016)
  • Daniel Suarez fastest in first XFINITY practice: #19-Daniel Suarez was fastest during opening practice at Bristol Motor Speedway with a speed of 126.046mph. #88-Regan Smith was second, followed by: #18-Kyle Busch, #2-Austin Dillon, #20-Erik Jones, #22-Brad Keselowski, #7-Justin Allgaier, #3-Ty Dillon, #11-Blake Koch, and #44-JJ Yeley. All 41 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Bristol practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-18-2016)
  • High Country Grizzlies sponsoring Kvapil: Travis Kvapil and the High Country Grizzlies have partnered for the Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway. The Grizzlies will be the primary sponsor on the #15 Ford Mustang for Friday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race. Travis Kvapil has a total of 22 starts across the three NASCAR National series. The High Country Grizzlies is an expansion team in the Arena Developmental League. The Grizzlies will be located in the Boone, NC, and their home venue will be George M. Holmes Convocation Center. Continuous Supporters of the #15 include CorvetteParts.net, Lilly Trucking, and Circle Track Warehouse.(High Country Grizzlies)(8-18-2016)
  • Byron signs with Hendrick, to run for JRM in 2017: Hendrick Motorsports has signed NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points leader William Byron to a multi-year driver agreement.Byron, who has posted a rookie record five NCWTS victories this season, will race full-time in the NASCAR XFINITY Series for Hendrick Motorsports affiliate JR Motorsports beginning in 2017.
    Byron was crowned NASCAR K&N; Pro Series East champion in 2015, when he posted four wins, three pole positions, five top-five finishes and 11 top-10s. In 14 events, the Charlotte, North Carolina, native led 740 of the season’s 1,730 total laps (43 percent). Through just 13 races this year, he has earned NCWTS victories at Kansas, Texas, Iowa, Kentucky and Pocono.
    In 2017, Byron will drive for JR Motorsports, which won the 2014 XFINITY Series championship, placed second in 2015 and currently leads the 2016 standings. He is familiar with the organization — owned by Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kelley Earnhardt Miller and Hendrick — after winning two races while competing for JRM’s late model program in 2014 and 2015. It marked Byron’s first experience racing full-sized stock cars. Byron, 18, graduated as an honor roll student from Charlotte Country Day School on May 27. He is enrolled as a freshman at Liberty University, where he will take classes during the fall semester while racing full-time in the remaining 10 NCWTS events.(Hendrick Motorsports)(8-18-2018)
  • Coughlin to miss next scheduled truck start for KBM: Cody Coughlin has been on a quest in 2016. The Joe Gibbs Racing Development driver is attempting to accomplish a feat that has never been done. Coughlin is aiming for two championships in the Champion Racing Association championship. Due to this fact, Coughlin will be unable to compete in the NASCAR Camping World Trucks Series event for Kyle Busch Motorsports on Sunday, September 4th at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park in Ontario, Canada.The 20-year-old has five total wins so far this year between the ARCA/CRA Super Series and JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour, and Coughlin leads the points in both divisions. On Labor Day Weekend, Coughlin has a double-header at the historic Winchester Speedway in Indiana. Coughlin was originally scheduled to make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series road course debut, but will instead be headed to the high-banks of Winchester with his KBM team cheering him on. Coughlin’s first race that weekend will be the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour 100 that Sunday. The 2013 champion currently holds a 103-point lead in that division. He will then run another 100 laps the next day in his Super Late Model with the ARCA/CRA Super Series. Coughlin has a 17-point lead that he’s looking to extend that at a track where he’s already scored a victory once before. A replacement driver for Coughlin’s #51 JEGS.com Toyota Tundra will be announced at a later date.(Cody Coughlin)(8-18-2016)
  • Cale Yarborough to serve as Southern 500 honorary pace car driver: Cale Yarborough once again will be driving on the legendary high banks of Darlington Raceway. On Sunday, Sept. 4, Yarborough, a South Carolina native and NASCAR Hall of Famer, will pace the field as the honorary pace car driver for the 67th running of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles’ Southern 500. “This is quite an honor and I’m really looking forward to being the honorary pace car driver for the Bojangles’ Southern 500,” Yarborough said. “The Southern 500 is the reason I got into racing. When I saw my first one, I knew that’s what I wanted to do. Darlington is a tough, ol’ race track that can give you fits. When I was racing, I wanted to win the Southern 500 more than any other race. I still get goose bumps when I drive by the race track. I just may have to run a few laps and show those young folks how it’s done.” Yarborough has five career wins at his hometown track, all coming in the Southern 500 on Labor Day weekend (1968, 1973, 1974, 1978 and 1982). Yarborough also will be honored by Darlington Raceway with a special ceremony during the Bojangles’ Southern 500 race weekend for his contributions to the sport. Details on the ceremony will be announced at a later date. Additionally, he will participate in the Bojangles’ Legends Breakfast Sunday morning (Sept. 4), along with other NASCAR Hall of Fame members. He was elected to the NASCAR Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2012. The Tradition Continues on Labor Day weekend as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles’ Southern 500 is set for Sunday, Sept. 4, 2016. The NASCAR XFINITY Series VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200 will race Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016. Tickets are still available.(Darlington Raceway)(8-18-2016)


    News from August 17, 2016


  • BRP renews Can-Am NASCAR #32 Go Fas Racing sponsorship: BRP’s Can-Am brand will be present on the NASCAR circuit for the next two years through its collaboration with the GoFAS #32 NASCAR Sprint Cup series racing team, in association with the Kappa and Cyclops Gear brands. The sponsorship was renewed for the 2017 and 2018 seasons. The agreement provides BRP’s Can-Am brand with the opportunity to sponsor 36 races, 13 as primary sponsor. “BRP’s successful experience to date on the NASCAR circuit in 2016 has been an important asset in our North American growth plan for the Can-Am brand,” said Anne B�lec, SVP Global Brand, Communications and PAC at BRP. “It has helped the brand gain greater visibility through NASCAR’s millions of North American spectators annually, and get closer to our consumers and their riding communities.” The sponsorship includes four title races – the Can-Am Duel at Daytona and the Can-Am 500 in Phoenix for the NASCAR Sprint Cup series in the U.S., and the Can-Am 200 in Toronto and Les 50 tours Can-Am in Trois-Rivi�res on the NASCAR Pinty’s circuit in Canada.(BRP PR), Jeffrey Earnhardt has driven the #32 Ford in 10 races in 2016, six of the races with Can-Am as the primary sponsor. No word if Earnhardt will return in 2017. Patrick Carpentier drove the car at Sonoma and Indy with Can-Am as the sponsor. Other drivers who have driven the #32, with different sponsors this season: Bobby Labonte(3) Boris Said(1), Eddie MacDonald(1), Joey Gase(3) and Jeb Burton(2).(8-17-2016)
  • New tire changer for Johnson: Kevin Novak, a native of Veseli, Minnesota, and graduate of the NASCAR Technical Institute, will replace longtime #48 HMS front-tire changer Cam Waugh. Waugh is moving back to his home state of Colorado. Novak is no stranger to the #48 over-the-wall crew as he filled in for an injured Waugh on May 15 at Dover, May 21 at the Charlotte all-star event and June 6 at Pocono.(HMS / Pit Talks)(8-17-2016)
  • Sherry Pollex announces she’s a two-year cancer survivor: Sherry Pollex announced Monday evening that she’s reached the two-year mark in her recovery from ovarian cancer. Pollex and longtime boyfriend #78-Martin Truex Jr. were the focus of one of the best moments of the 2016 in May, when the duo shared an emotional Victory Lane at Charlotte Motor Speedway after the Sprint Cup Series driver walloped the Coca-Cola 600 field, leading 392 of 400 laps for the win.(NASCAR.com)(8-17-2016)
  • Kenseth: no talks with JGR about his future, Hamlin in talks: #20-Matt Kenseth has no insight into the news that Furniture Row Racing owner Barney Visser isn’t expecting Erik Jones, who currently drives for Joe Gibbs Racing in the Xfinity Series, to return to his team after his rookie season in Sprint Cup. Furniture Row Racing is expanding to a field a #77 Toyota for Jones, teaming with Martin Truex Jr.’s #78. Multiple sources have told NBC Sports that Jones could return to Joe Gibbs Racing in 2018 or 2019, and that several scenarios are being considered depending on the future status of drivers and sponsors. Gibbs has #11-Denny Hamlin, Kenseth, #19-Carl Edwards and #18-Kyle Busch under contract in Sprint Cup through next season, and the team also has Daniel Suarez running for a second consecutive full season in the Xfinity Series.
    Kenseth, 44, said he hasn’t discussed “the master plan for 2020” with team owner Joe Gibbs, though he was made aware of Jones’ move to Furniture Row in 2017. “I’ve been involved in a lot of those talks, so I knew that was happening, but I can’t say we’ve ever sat and had the conversation as to what exactly is 2018 going to look like and 2019,” he said. “I don’t think anybody probably knows 100% sure.” Kenseth is sure he isn’t considering retirement. “There’s been times where I’ve been asked about (retirement) a lot,” he said Tuesday. “Maybe you’re not running as good and then you start thinking about it, ‘Well, maybe is it time?’ I don’t really feel like I’m that close where I really can put a date on it to be honest. I feel great. More times than not, I’m having fun. I feel like we’re really competitive more times than not. And we’re capable of winning races, and I think we’re capable of winning championships. That’s just way on the bottom of my list of things to think about or worry about at the moment.”
    Joe Gibbs said it’s “probably unclear some right now” what will happen with Jones after 2017, but the team owner said Jones would remain in Sprint Cup and wouldn’t return to the Xfinity Series with JGR. Could Jones return to Joe Gibbs Racing in a Cup car? “I think Furniture Row wanted to make this step to go to two cars, so their future is going to be two cars,” Gibbs said. “And whatever their future is past that, it’s up to them. I think it’s kind of what Erik does. Does he stay there longer than that? That’s the question.” Gibbs noted that Jones’ 2017 sponsor, 5 Hour Energy, also has a one-year deal. “It’s whatever Furniture Row wants to do,” he said. “They came up with the sponsor and are going to be footing the bill for everything. They’re going to be ramping up out there. I’m sure that 5 Hour is going to have their option of what they want to do. I think Furniture Row is going to try to put together their future. They’ve done a real good job of putting this thing together.” Gibbs said his team is in negotiations on a contract extension with Hamlin, who is signed through next season. “It’s still in the works,” Gibbs said. “We’re talking now.”(NBC Sports)(8-17-2016)
  • Bristol Track Notes & History:
    � Groundbreaking for Bristol International Speedway, as Bristol Motor Speedway was originally known, took place in 1960. The track was an exact half-mile.
    � First NASCAR Sprint Cup race was July 30, 1961; Jack Smith won the event (with relief from Johnny Allen).
    � All of the NSCS races have been scheduled for 500 laps, except for both races in 1976 and the second in 1977, which were 400 laps.
    � In the fall of 1969, the track was reshaped and re-measured to .533-miles.
    � The name changed to Bristol International Raceway in 1978.
    � The first night race was held in the fall of 1978.
    � The surface was changed from asphalt to concrete in 1992.
    � The name changed to Bristol Motor Speedway in May 1996.
    � The track was resurfaced between races in 2007, and the turns were ground down in 2012 to eliminate part of the progressive banking.
    (NASCAR)
  • Bristol Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in all three NASCAR national series will run the same Goodyear tire set-up at Bristol this week . . . this is the same combination of left- and right-side tires that NASCAR teams have run at Bristol since August 2014 . . . Bristol is the only track at which NASCAR teams are scheduled to run either of these two tire codes . . . unlike on most NASCAR ovals one mile or less in length, on which teams generally do not run inner liners in their tires, teams are required to run liners in their right-side tires only at Bristol . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire (Goodyear), for tire codes, pressures, set limites and more, see the Bristol Race Info page
  • Testing at Chicago August 23rd, fans welcome: Chicagoland Speedway will host a NASCAR organizational test with several of the sport’s top teams on Tuesday, August 23, and fans are invited to take part in this preview to the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup weekend at Chicagoland Speedway September 15-18. The drivers who are tentatively scheduled to participate in the organizational test are as follows:
    #4-Kevin Harvick, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #18-Kyle Busch, #21-Ryan Blaney, #22-Joey Logano, #23-David Ragan, #31-Ryan Newman, #34-Chris Buescher, #44-Bryan Scott, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #78-Martin Truex Jr. and #95-Michael McDowell (All drivers scheduled to attend are subject to change at the discretion of NASCAR and its teams).
    With proof of their Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400 ticket purchase, fans can watch their favorite drivers participate in the organizational test free of charge from between 1 and 4 pm. Fans are required to bring their printed tickets as proof of purchase. Those who plan on attending the test can enter the facility through Gate 1 off West Schweitzer Road. Once inside the facility, fans will be directed to park along the Midway directly in front of the main box office. The box office will be open to accommodate fans looking to purchase tickets prior to the start of the organizational test. Attendees will then use the elevators to access the third floor where they will now be able to walk outside and sit within a reserved section of grandstand seats. This exclusive opportunity will be open for those wishing to take in all the sights and sounds of stock car racing. In accordance with usual rules and regulation, fans are welcome to bring soft coolers containing refreshments and snacks for the event.
    Lastly, a Chicagoland Speedway staff member will be available to escort a small group of fans every 10 minutes down near the front of the grandstands for a photo opportunity. The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup weekend at Chicagoland Speedway, Sept. 15-18, will begin on Thursday, Sept. 15 with the ARCA Racing Series followed by American Ethanol E15 225 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series under the lights on Friday night. On Saturday, Sept. 17, the NASCAR XFINITY Series will hit the track as the precursor to Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series showdown, the first race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.(Chicagoland Speedway)(8-17-2016_
  • Newman to run Modified race at Bristol: Ryan Newman will return to the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (NWMT) at Bristol Motor Speedway (Wed. 8/17) with LFR Chassis in the #7ny Aggressive Hydraulics car. Newman has had success in his six NWMT starts at Bristol, recording two wins and three Top-5’s at Bristol. Rob Fuller will crew chief for Newman, as Newman looks to add on to his exceptional list of finishes at Bristol.(LFR Chassis/Rob Fuller Motorsports)(8-17-2016)
  • Thad Moffitt, Grandson of Richard Petty, Wins First Stock Car Race: Thad Moffitt, the 15-year-old grandson of “The King” Richard Petty, won his first stock car event Saturday night at the Anderson Motor Speedway (Williamston, SC). Moffitt took the pole and then the checkered during Saturday night’s Southeast Limited Late Model Daytona 1 Challenger Series race. In partnership with Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM), Empire Racing Group (ERG) is entering Moffitt in the Southeast Limited Late Model Challenger Series in 2016. It is the first year of the partnership and Moffitt is now leading the series championship after Saturday night’s win. Moffitt is the son of Brian and Rebecca Petty-Moffitt. He has previous experience racing quarter midgets and in karting at Ace Speedway. Moffitt won the race in the famous family color, Petty Blue. Moffitt races the #46 to continue the Petty family tradition started by his great grandfather Lee racing the #42. The team is supported by Jacob Construction, Design, and Technology, Transportation Impact and Hostetler Ranch.(RPM)(8-17-2016)
  • Tony Eury Jr. to make Modified Crew Chief debut: LFR Chassis will be back in action in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (NWMT) at Bristol Motor Speedway (Wed. 8/17), as Todd Szegedy and Rob Fuller Motorsports team up for the Bush’s Beans 150. The team announced that veteran NASCAR crew chief, Tony Eury Jr., will make his NWMT crew chief debut this week. Although this will mark Tony Eury Jr.’s first race as a NWMT crew chief, Eury has an impressive resume as a NASCAR crew chief (2 Cup wins and 1 XFINITY Series win) and looks forward to broadening his list of accomplishments with Rob Fuller Motorsports in Bristol.(LFR Chassis/Rob Fuller Motorsports)(8-17-2016)
  • Cope announces Bristol sponsor: Derrike Cope Racing with JP Motorsports announces a new co-primary partner for the Bristol Xfinity Friday Night Race. Established in 1991, Supplies Unlimited, Inc sells all types of commercial contractor equipment with the motto “Service Does Count”. From electrical, mechanical and general, to even glass and waterproofing contracting, you will find anything you need at Supplies Unlimited, Inc. Ehydrateracing.com with the Protein on the Go Premium pouch will be featured as co-primary this weekend at Bristol and will be hosting a show car appearance in Asheville NC at Ingalls Grocery Store 575 New Leicester this Sunday from 2 to 4 pm. FATZ.com will be providing our catering during the entire event. #DCRTeam70 enjoys the variety of food offered by Fatz Cafe and impeccable service. CircleTrackWarehouse.com has been providing quality used racing parts and cars to Nascar teams in Mooresville NC for years, and continues to support Derrike Cope Racing with JP Motorsports. Ice-Frost continues as an associate of the #70 Chevrolet.(Derrike Cope Racing)(8-17-2016)
  • Kennedy’s win a first for sport’s founding family:Ben Kennedy became the first France family member to win a NASCAR national series race in the sport they founded over six decades ago. Kennedy, the 24-year-old great-grandson of NASCAR founder Bill France Sr., took the lead with 20 of 200 laps remaining and held off a wild charge from Brett Moffitt to win Wednesday night’s UNOH 200 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway. The win is Kennedy’s first in the Camping World Truck Series in 63 career starts. Kennedy has driven three different trucks this season for two different teams but is now qualified for the inaugural championship Chase in Trucks.(Motorsport)(8-17-2016)
  • Kennedy wins Truck Series Race at Bristol: #33-Ben Kennedy led the final 20 laps to win the UNOH 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway on Wednesday. #11-Brett Moffitt finished second. #19-Daniel Hemric, #9-William Byron, #21-Johnny Sauter, #00-Cole Custer, #4-Christopher Bell, #8-John Hunter Nemechek, #71-Brandon Jones, and #05-John Wes Townley were the remainder of the top-10.
    Pole sitter #29-Tyler Reddick finished 14th.
    There were 9 cautions for 55 laps and 7lead changes among 5 leaders.
    The average speed was 74.387mph.
    Complete results are on the Bristol race results page (pdf). (8-17-2016)
  • Bristol Race Fast Facts:
    Ben Kennedy won the 19th Annual UNOH 200, his first victory in 63 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
    This is his first victory and sixth top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in four races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    Brett Moffitt (second) posted his second top-10 finish in 2016.
    Daniel Hemric (third) posted his second top-10 finish in two races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    William Byron (fourth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Byron leads the point standings by 37 points over Daniel Hemric.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(8-17-2016)
  • Driver standings following Bristol:
    1) #9-William Byron #, 349
    2) #19-Daniel Hemric, 312, -37
    3) #21-Johnny Sauter, 306, -43
    5) #4-Christopher Bell #, 296, -53
    6) #88-Matt Crafton, 295, -54
    7) #33-Ben Kennedy, 287, -62
    8) #8-John Hunter Nemechek, 281, -68
    9) #00-Cole Custer, 273, -76
    10) #29-Tyler Reddick, 270, -79
    See complete standings on the driver standings page (pdf).(8-17-2016)
  • Owner Standings following Bristol are posted (pdf).(8-17-2016)
  • Reddick on pole at Bristol: #29-Tyler Reddick won the pole for the at Bristol Motor Speedway with a speed of 128.917mph. #51-Daniel Suarez will start second, followed by #13-Cameron Hayley, #41-Ben Rhodes, #4-Christopher Bell, #9-William Byron, #21-Johnny Sauter, #11-Brett Moffitt, #00-Cole Custer, and #24-Kaz Grala.
    Reddick was fastest in the second round with a speed of 128.779mph.
    Suarez was fastest in the first round at 128.908mph.
    Did Not Qualify: #63-Jake Griffin, #1-Clay Greenfield, #10-Cody McMahan.
    See complete lineup on the Starting lineup (pdf) page.(8-17-2016)
  • Bristol Qualifying Notes:
    Tyler Reddick won the 21 Means 21 Pole Award for the 19th Annual UNOH 200 with a lap of 14.884 seconds, 128.917 mph.
    This is his third pole in 53 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
    This is his first pole and ninth top-10 start in 2016.
    This is his first pole in two races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    Daniel Suarez(i) (second) posted his sixth top-10 start of 2016 and his first in two races at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    Cameron Hayley (third) posted his second top-10 start at Bristol Motor Speedway. It is his seventh in13 races this season.
    Ben Rhodes (fourth) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-17-2016)
  • Suarez fastest in final Truck practice: #51-Daniel Suarez was fastest during final practice for the UNOH 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway with a speed 129.474mph. #11-Brett Moffitt was second, followed by #9-William Byron, #4-Christopher Bell, #13-Cameron Hayley, #29-Tyler Reddick, #2-Austin CIndric, #98-Rico Abreu, #41-Ben Rhodes, and #88-Matt Crafton. 36 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Bristol practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(8-17-2016)
  • Bell fastest in first Truck practice: #4-Christopher Bell was fastest during opening practice at Bristol Motor Speedway with a speed of 123.515mph. #17-Timothy Peters, #98-Rico Abreu, #51-Daniel Suarez, #00-Cole Custer, #29-Tyler Reddick, #41-Ben Rhodes, #88-Matt Crafton, #8-John Hunter Nemechek, and #13-Cameron Hayley were the top-10. 35 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Bristol practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-17-2016)
  • Truck Series Entry List: There are 37 trucks on the preliminary entry list for Wednesday’s UNOH 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway. A few notes:
    Austin Hill in the #02;
    Austin Cindric in the #2;
    Matt Mills in the #07;
    Stewart Friesen in the #16;
    Bryce Napier in the #49;
    Daniel Suarez in the #51;
    Clay Greenfield in the #68;
    Caleb Holman in the #75;
    Jesse Little in the #81;
    Parker Kligerman returns to the #92;
    (8-15-2016)
    UPDATE: Cody McMahan will debut in the #10;
    (8-15-2016)
    UPDATE 2: Clay Greenfield withdrew in the 68 and is entered in the 1;
    (8-17-2016)
    See the complete list on the Bristol entry list pageRIDE TV joins Hayley:ThorSport Racing is honored to announce a partnership with Ride Television Network, Inc. (RIDE TV),a 24-hour, high-definition, television network, dedicated to providing quality entertainment to equestrian and agriculture enthusiasts. The Fort Worth, Texas network, which delivers programming to those that enjoy and care about anything and everything horse related, will be featured on the #13 Toyota Tundra driven by second-year NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) driver, Cameron Hayley, beginning at Bristol and for select races in 2016 and beyond. RIDE TV allows you to channel your passion for the horse lifestyle. The 24-hour network airs a mix of reality shows, equine event coverage, inspiring documentaries, cooking demonstrations, children’s programs, and more. Their unique programming features celebrities, champions, and the personalities at the heart of America’s horse culture. RIDE TV is covering all breeds, all disciplines, all the time..(See an image of the truck on the #13 Team Paint Schemes page)(ThorSport Racing)(8-17-2016)


    News from August 16, 2016


  • Tide returns to NASCAR, sponsoring Kenseth in Southern 500: Tide and Joe Gibbs Racing announced they will bring back one of the most iconic brands in the history of NASCAR for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on Sunday, September 4. Tide’s unforgettable orange and yellow paint scheme has been reborn as a more powerful Tide PODS Toyota Camry, and will be driven by Joe Gibbs Racing driver Matt Kenseth. This potent combination of the new Tide PODS entry and Kenseth will pay homage to the rich history of Tide while exemplifying the strength and evolution of the brand.
    For 20 years, an entire generation of racing fans cheered for the iconic “Tide Ride.” Driven by some of the sport’s legendary figures, including Darrell Waltrip, Ricky Rudd and Ricky Craven, the car amassed 20 total wins from 1987 to 2006. Each driver contributed a fabled chapter to the Tide Ride story-Waltrip’s famous victory lane dance following his Daytona 500 win in 1989; Rudd gutting out a win at the 1997 Brickyard 400; and Craven capturing the closest win in the sport’s history (.002 seconds) at Darlington in 2003.
    “With Tide celebrating its 70th anniversary as a brand, there’s no better time to return to our roots in NASCAR for the Southern 500, and introduce a new generation of fans to the powerful new Tide PODS car,” said Amy Krehbiel, Brand Manager for Tide. “Matt Kenseth’s track record has proven him to be the type of commanding talent that we’re proud to align with the Tide PODS brand.”
    As the newest driver to compete for Tide, Matt Kenseth brings nearly 20 years of experience in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, including 38 wins and the 2003 series championship. “Tide has such a rich history in this sport,” said Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Toyota Camry. “I can’t think of a better race to make their return to NASCAR than for the Southern 500. I’m looking forward to being a part of the second annual throwback weekend, and am proud to represent such an iconic brand. There have been many great moments associated with Tide and its former talented drivers; I’m honored to continue the legacy with Tide PODS at Darlington.”
    Tide will also serve as an associate sponsor on the remaining three Joe Gibbs Racing Toyotas of #11-Denny Hamlin, #18-Kyle Busch and #19-Carl Edwards for the Labor Day weekend event. Additionally, the #18, #19 and #20 entries will carry Tide as an associate for the following two events at Chicago and Richmond. Both Tide and Joe Gibbs Racing are also celebrating substantial company anniversaries this year, further strengthening the significance of the partnership and return of the iconic brand to NASCAR for these select events.
    “This is a thrill for us,” said Joe Gibbs, owner of Joe Gibbs Racing. “Not only is this a throwback paint scheme that we know the fans will be excited for, but it is with a sponsor that has a tremendous history in our sport. This is our 25th Anniversary season at Joe Gibbs Racing and I know it is the 70th Anniversary of Tide. They really are a historic brand in our country and their new partnership with Joe Gibbs Racing for Darlington is a real honor.”(Joe Gibbs Racing), see images of the scheme on the #20 Team Schemes page (8-16-2016)
  • #78 to showcase retro look at Darlington to honor Auto-Owners Insurance 100th Anniversary:The timing of being the primary sponsor on Martin Truex’s #78 Toyota for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 throwback weekend Sept. 2-4 at Darlington Raceway offered a unique opportunity for Auto-Owners Insurance, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary. In the spirit of the throwback concept, Auto-Owners Insurance has opted for a retro look on Truex’s race car that will pay tribute to the company’s centennial milestone. The Lansing-Mich.-based company, which has been a staple in local communities since it was founded in 1916, is one of the nation’s largest insurers. “We love the retro theme of the Darlington race and how it celebrates NASCAR’s history,” said Mary Pierce, Auto-Owners senior vice president of marketing and sales. “Auto-Owners really wanted to be part of this race as we celebrate our 100th year in business.” Truex will also wear a special firesuit at the Darlington race, honoring independent insurance agents and the typical agent attire from back in 1916. “Darlington has just become an even more exciting race for our Furniture Row Racing team by having the retro Auto-Owners Insurance paint scheme on our Toyota Camry and also my fire suit,” said Truex, who has already clinched a 2016 Chase playoff berth. “Auto-Owners has put a lot of creative thought in activating its primary sponsorship and we would like nothing more than to reward the 100-year-old company with a victory at one of NASCAR’s most celebrated tracks.” The Auto-Owners paint scheme and firesuit for the Darlington Raceway weekend is part of a larger company promotion called Fast, Friendly, Local. “Fast, Friendly, Local exemplifies the way Auto-Owners and our independent agents serve our customers,” said Pierce. “In 1916 you had to walk into an insurance agency to buy insurance. Now, you can use modern technology to contact your independent Auto-Owners agent, but at the end of the day you are still buying insurance from an expert who lives in your community. That experience is part of the outstanding service Auto-Owners wants to deliver to our customers.”(Furniture Row Racing PR), see image of the scheme on the #78 Team Schemes page (8-16-2016)
  • NASCAR will not increase timing lines at Bristol: NASCAR confirmed Monday to NBC Sports that there will be no pit road timing zones added for this week’s races at Bristol Motor Speedway. The track already has 14 such timing zones. NASCAR has added timing zones since the Sprint Cup and Xfinity races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in July and begun enforcing those zones since the July Cup and Xfinity races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. There were 18 timing zones at Pocono Raceway after those were doubled for the Camping World Truck and Sprint Cup races last month. In the three Cup races that have had the additional timing zones enforced, pit road speeding penalties are up 375 percent compared to the three races before NASCAR made the change. NASCAR is not making a change at Bristol because it is comfortable with the timing zones there. In the last four Cup races at Bristol, there have been an average of 11.3 speeding penalties issued.(NBC Sports)(8-16-2016)
  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Bristol:
    #20-Matt Kenseth 102.1
    #18-Kyle Busch 99.7
    #88-Jeff Gordon 99.5
    #24-Chase Elliott 95.3
    #4-Kevin Harvick 94.4
    #19-Carl Edwards 94.1
    #41-Kurt Busch 93.4
    #2-Brad Keselowski 92.8
    #48-Jimmie Johnson 92.2
    #16-Greg Biffle 90.2
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2016 races (23 total) among active drivers at Bristol Motor Speedway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)
  • Men arrested in beating of Mike Wallace to face additional charges: The three men arrested in the June beating of former driver Mike Wallace and his family face additional misdemeanor charges. Documents filed Friday by prosecutors in North Carolina court show Paul Lucas, who was charged with assault on a female, now faces misdemeanor charges for assault inflicting serious injury (two counts), assault/battery and assault on a female. Nathan Lucas and Randolph Mangum, originally charged with simple assault, now face misdemeanor charges for assault inflicting serious injury and assault/battery. Their next court date is October 25. Wallace suffered a bruised face, lacerations and tooth damage; his adult daughter suffered a fractured wrist and black eye, according to the documents.(ESPN.com)(8-16-2016)
  • Owen Kelly back in the #18 at Road America: Australian Owen Kelly will be back with Joe Gibbs Racing at Road America, the team has confirmed. Although Kelly, 39, has made only four NASCAR Xfinity Series starts, two have come at the rolling 4-mile course in Elkhart Lake, where he finished fifth in his series debut in 2010 and fourth in 2013. Kelly will drive Gibbs’ #18 Toyota on Road America 180 weekend, Aug. 26-27. Kelly has qualified no worse than ninth in his four Xfinity races. He led two laps at Mid-Ohio last weekend but also went off course. Mid-Ohio is the site of his other two races.Kelly also has made one Sprint Cup start.(Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)(8-16-2016)
  • Bubba Wallace to Run Retro Mark Martin Scheme at Darlington: Bubba Wallace’s #6 Ford Mustang will carry a Retro 90-91 throwback scheme that mirrors the colors NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Mark Martin ran on his #6 Ford Thunderbird in the Sprint Cup Series as Roush Fenway evolved into a perennial championship contender in the early 1990s. The paint scheme also pays homage to Ford Motor Company, who has provided manufacturing support to Roush Fenway since it launched NASCAR operations in 1988 and has worked hand-in-hand with iconic team owner Jack Roush since the late 1960s. Martin led 1,111 laps, won four races and posted 40 top-10 finishes during the 1990 and 1991 seasons when the scheme ran on his Ford. In addition, he finished second in the Sprint Cup point standings during the 1990 season and sixth in 1991. “I’m really looking forward to seeing that car back out on the track,” said Martin, who won 35 Cup races driving for Roush Fenway. “We really started to hit our stride during that time and it was great to go to the race track every week knowing that we had a chance to win and that we were competing for championships at the highest level.” Like Wallace, Martin also piloted the #6 NASCAR XFINITY Series entry in 2006, driving the car to poles at Michigan and Texas and earning five top-five finishes in seven starts that season.(Roush Fenway Racing), see images of the car on the #6 team paint schemes page.(8-16-2016)
  • 100th start for Ty Dillon: This weekend Ty Dillon is scheduled to make his 100th career XFINITY Series start at Bristol Motor Speedway. Dillon, 24, made his NXS debut in 2012 in the #33 Chevrolet Impala and has since accumulated one win (Indianapolis Motor Speedway), 27 top-five finishes, 66 top-10 finishes, four poles awards and has completed 17,246 laps.(Richard Childress Racing)(8-16-2016)
  • Bristol launches “Lawn Party” interactive zone: A block party for adults 21 and older is coming to Bristol Motor Speedway as the Bristol Lawn Party sets up shop with its rowdy entertainment during the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race week. Located in the BMS Fan Zone by the iconic Bristol Tower in Turn 2, the Bristol Lawn Party is your one-stop destination for wacky, wild games and tailgate-style backyard fun. Highlights include giant beer pong, American Ninja Warrior-style inflatables, a mechanical bull and the racing themed pit crew challenge. Guests will also want to be sure to participate in human billiards and take a home a commemorative photo from the Bristol photo booth. Guests attending the races on Friday, Aug. 19 and Saturday, Aug. 20, will be able to join the party, which is free of charge. The Bristol Lawn Party will be open on Friday from 2-7 pm and will reopen following the conclusion of the Food City 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series race. The party zone will also be open on Saturday from 10:00am-7:00pm, prior to pre-race for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.(BMS)(8-16-2016)


    News from August 15, 2016


  • Stenhouse Jr. to Honor Clauson with Special Scheme at Bristol: #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr. will pay tribute to the late Bryan Clauson this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway by running the Fastenal scheme that Clauson raced during the 2008 NASCAR XFINITY Series season. “It will be a huge honor to run the same Fastenal scheme that Bryan raced in 2008,” Stenhouse said. “This past week has been difficult for many but it has been great to see the racing community join together to support Bryan’s family, friends and Lauren. Bryan was one of my best friends and hopefully we can ‘parked it’ in victory lane on Saturday for Bryan.” In 2008, Fastenal served as the primary partner for Clauson’s #40 Chip Ganassi machine. In his 21 starts, he scored one pole award at Daytona International Speedway and one top-five and two top-10 finishes.(Roush Fenway Racing), see an image of the car on the #17 team paint schemes page.(8-15-2016)
  • Virginia Tech featured on the #21 at Bristol and Martinsville: The Virginia Tech Athletics Department and Wood Brothers Racing announced that the NASCAR Sprint Cup race team will display a Virginia Tech paint scheme on its cars for upcoming races at Bristol Motor Speedway and Martinsville Speedway. The paint scheme is being used to promote both the school’s academic programs and the athletics department as part of the department’s “This is Home” marketing campaign. The Virginia Tech football team will play Tennessee at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday, Sept. 10 – a game that may break college football’s all-time single-game attendance mark – and the car will be displayed at that game. The car will feature a primary color of maroon, with orange and white accent stripes. Ryan Blaney, who drives the Wood Brothers’ #21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, will wear a fire suit and a helmet with Virginia Tech colors and the team will be wearing Virginia Tech shirts.(Wood Brothers Racing), see an image of the car on the #21 team paint schemes page.(8-15-2016)
  • McMurray’s Darlington scheme a throwback to Bill Elliott: Chip Ganassi Racing announced that the #1 McDonald’s Chevy will sport an iconic look for the Labor Day Weekend race at the famed Darlington Raceway. Jamie McMurray will drive the #1 Chevrolet SS featuring a popular look from the past. Originally run by NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Bill Elliott in 1997, McMurray’s throwback ride will feature a Mac Tonight paint scheme for the 2016 Southern 500. Mac Tonight was a sunglasses-wearing, piano-playing crooner with a crescent moon for a head, who sang the popular jingle “Mac Tonight”. The midnight blue car, covered with stars and the Mac Tonight crescent moon will brighten the night at the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. The Mac Tonight campaign was originally created for California McDonald’s franchisees, intended to increase the after 4pm dinner business for the restaurant chain.(Chip Ganassi Racing), see an image of the car on the #1 team paint schemes page.(8-15-2016)
  • Entry List for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway is posted, 40 teams/drivers [for 40 spots] are listed, including: #21-Blaney*, #30-Wise*, #32-Earnhardt, #55-Sorenson*, #95-McDowell, #98-Whitt*.
    Drivers who are not a Charter team, an Open Team, and must get in via speed: #21-Blaney, #30-Wise, #55-Sorenson, #98-Whitt
    Since only 40 cars are entered, all drivers will make the race, 40 is the maximum.
    * Open Team (no Charter)
    See the full entry list on Jayski.com’s Bristol Entry List
  • Bayne, Cassill complete Ironman: #6-Trevor Bayne and #38-Landon Cassill spent their off weekend in Dublin, Ireland competing in an Ironman 70.3. It was Bayne’s first Ironman and Cassill’s 5th. The Ironman 70.3 consists of a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike ride and 13.1 mile run.
    Bayne finished in 5 hours, 25 minutes and 10 seconds, 479th overall. He swam in 35:15, biked in 2:44:37 and ran in 1:57.28.
    Cassill finished in 5 hours, 2 minutes, and 38 seconds, 216th overall. He swam in 30:56, biked in 2:35:51, and ran in 1:46:52.
    (8-15-2016)
  • Living Legends of Auto Racing announce 2017 honorees: Daytona-based Living Legends of Auto Racing (LLOAR) announced its slate of honorees for their 25th Annual Awards Banquet. The event is scheduled for Wednesday, February 22, 2017 at The Shores Resort and Spa in Daytona Beach Shores. Since 1993, the LLOAR annual awards night has been one of the highlights of the stock car racing mecca’s “Speedweeks” festivities. The Living Legends of Auto Racing, Inc., was founded in 1993 with an objective of recognizing those that have contributed to building the sport of organized stock car racing, from the days of beach racing in the 1940s and 1950s to today’s great American pastime. The list of 2017 honorees includes these motorsports personalities:
    Pioneer of Racing Award – Brownie King, NASCAR Grand National Series (now called the Sprint Cup Series) and NASCAR Convertible Series veteran.
    Distinguished Driver Award – Sterling Marlin, NASCAR Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series competitor.
    Dedicated Service Award – Allan E. Brown, noted racing historian and former producer/editor of National Spedways Directory.
    Russ Moyer Media Award – Dave Moody, veteran Motor Racing Network (MRN) and Sirius XM NASCAR radio personality and Sirius XM voting representative on the 48-person panel that selects the annual class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
    Allison Family Award – Chip Ganassi, well-respected team owner and former race car driver, with a resume that includes five appearances in the Indianapolis 500 in a career span of six years (1981 – 1986).
    Tribute to the Early Days – Will Cagle, legendary Florida short track driver with over 900 wins in a 30-year career behind the wheel.
    Saturday Night Hero Award – Bobby Brack, South Florida racing legend. Known as “The Chief”, his trademark #57 race car was a fixture on the Southern circuit for over three decades.
    The Ray Fox Award – Mike Curb, a 40+ year veteran car owner who fielded cars for some of the sport’s biggest names, including Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt, Dale Jarrett, Johnny Sauter, and Kyle Larson, to name a few.
    (LLOAR)(8-15-2016)
  • XFINITY Entry List: There are 42 cars on the preliminary entry list for Friday’s Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway. A few notes:
    Hermie Sadler will drive the #14 for TriStar;
    The Rick Ware #15 is TBA;
    Joe Gibbs #18 is TBA;
    Corey LaJoie will drive the #24 for JGL;
    The Rick Ware #25 is TBA;
    Brandon Gdovic is entered in his #46;
    Gray Gauliding will be in the #60 for Roush Fenway;
    The Obaika Racing #77 is TBA;
    Regan Smith will drive the #88 for JR Motorsports.(8-15-2015)
    See the complete list on the Bristol entry list page.
  • Truck Series Entry List: There are 37 trucks on the preliminary entry list for Wednesday’s UNOH 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway. A few notes:
    Austin Hill in the #02;
    Austin Cindric in the #2;
    Matt Mills in the #07;
    Stewart Friesen in the #16;
    Bryce Napier in the #49;
    Daniel Suarez in the #51;
    Clay Greenfield in the #68;
    Caleb Holman in the #75;
    Jesse Little in the #81;
    Parker Kligerman returns to the #92;
    (8-15-2016)
    UPDATE: Cody McMahan will debut in the #10;
    (8-15-2016)
    See the complete list on the Bristol entry list page.
  • BrainGear joins Moffitt, RHR for Bristol: BrainGear Performance Formula will be the primary sponsor on the #11 Toyota Tundra at Bristol Motor Speedway. BrainGear is the brain performance formula developed by top neurologists, scientists and industry experts that provides immediate focus, clarity and concentration while optimizing brain health and performance over time. What initially began as a brain performance formula for athletes, has now become the go-to for people who are full of relentless drive and devotion dedicated to performing at their best.(Red Horse Racing)(8-15-2016)
  • McMahan to debut at BMS: Cody McMahan will make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) debut this Wednesday at the famed Bristol Motor Speedway in the UNOH 200. This will also be the NASCAR debut of the High Country Grizzlies as they will serve as primary sponsor to the #10 of Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing. Cody McMahan has a made a name for himself across several disciplines of racing. His latest achievements include driving for Eric McClure in the Charger division of the ASA Late Model series. He was also awarded Rookie-of-the-year honors for his four wins. McMahan will have NCWTS veteran Caleb Roark spotting and mentoring him. The High Country Grizzlies will serve as primary sponsor on the No. 10 Chevrolet. The High Country Grizzlies is an expansion team in the Arena Developmental League. The Grizzlies will be located in the Boone, NC, and our home venue will be George M. Holmes Convocation Center. In addition to the High Country Grizzlies will be several associate partners. Continuous supporter of McMahan includes KaraoQ, Smokeware, and Schwarze Industries.(Markanda Social Strategies)(8-15-2016)
  • Abreu wins at Knoxville during off-week UPDATE: Rico Abreu won his first feature in the Knoxville Nationals on Friday night. Abreu came from to a field of 77 contestants to become the 196th feature winner at Knoxville Speedway. His victory in the 410 A Main allowed him to transfer to the Saturday’s A Main in the Knoxville Nationals. Abreu shot to the lead on the first lap with Danny Lasoski in chase followed by Brian Brown and Lucas Wolfe. Abreu led 25 laps and finished 1.536-second ahead of Greg Hodnett.(Motorsport.com)(8-13-2016)
    UPDATE: Abreu competed in the 56th Annual 5-Hour Energy Knoxville Nationals at Knoxville Raceway in Iowa August 10-13. The Rutherford, Calif. native won his Heat Race on Night 1, and finished ninth. Abreu did not race on Night 2, and won the feature event on Night 3 – Qualifying Night, earning him a 17th-place starting position for Saturday night’s Knoxville Nationals, where he finished 12th.(ThorSport Racing)(8-15-2016)
  • Michigan concessions will offer another year of favorites: Michigan International Speedway and Americrown, the racetrack’s food and beverage provider, roll in another strong concessions menu to satisfy fans. The menu for the Pure Michigan 400 will feature a wide variety of selections, and it all starts in Section 35 with the Northern Exposure. Our neighbors from the north are sure to be pleased with the unique food to Canada and MIS by the following offerings: Poutine, Poutine dog, peameal bacon sandwich, hot dog and French fries. Gluten Free options will be featured at Northern Exposure, as well. For something closer to home, sink your mouth into some chicken tenders, fries, cheeseburgers, and hot dogs found at the Coca-Cola Champions Grill found in Section 6. Those looking to get their morning started right will need to look no further for the breakfast sandwiches. Wash it down with a Red Bull Energy Drink or choose from our selection of Michigan Craft Beers at many of our bars found in New Holland Fan Plaza and in the Grandstands. The twist on your favorite classic hot dog is back thanks to MIS and Americrown. The Dog Haus located in Section 50 once again features the Coney dog, cheeseburger dog, Chicago dog, tacho dog, Reuben dog and buffalo dog. Fans won’t want to miss a thing at the Backwoods BBQ in Section 15. Get your BBQ pork sandwich, chicken tenders, cheeseburger, hamburger and a chef salad. (MIS)(8-15-2016)


    News from August 14, 2016


  • Four Races Until The Chase For The NASCAR Sprint Cup: Only four races remain until the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, beginning with the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway. Eleven drivers have captured berths by winning a race and they will likely be joined by Pocono victor Chris Buescher, who sits just three points outside of the 30th position he needs to seize to make NASCAR’s playoffs.
    Here’s how the Chase Grid looks today: #2-Brad Keselowski (4 wins), #18-Kyle Busch (4), #19-Carl Edwards (2), #11-Denny Hamlin (2), #20-Matt Kenseth (2), #48-Jimmie Johnson (2), #4-Kevin Harvick (1), #41-Kurt Busch (1), #22-Joey Logano (1), #78-Martin Truex Jr (1), #14-Tony Stewart (1), #31-Ryan Newman (50 points ahead of Trevor Bayne on the cutoff line), #24-Chase Elliott (+49), #3-Austin Dillon (+47), #1-Jamie McMurray (+38), #42-Kyle Larson (+8).
    The first four out are #6-Bayne (-8), #5-Kasey Kahne (-11), #21-Ryan Blaney (-18) and #47-AJ Allmendinger (-34).
    Buescher entering the top 30 would hurt the non-winners on the Chase Grid’s chances at making the playoffs, specifically Kyle Larson. In that scenario, four drivers would get in on points as of now: Newman (42 points ahead of Larson), Elliott (+41), Austin Dillon (+39) and McMurray (+30).
    The first four out would be Larson (-30), Bayne (-38), Kahne (-41) and Blaney (-48).
    Remember, a win automatically gets a driver into the Chase as long as he/she has attempted to start every event and is in the top 30 in points following Richmond.
    The winless drivers with previous victories at the remaining tracks:
    Bristol: Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kasey Kahne
    Michigan: Greg Biffle, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Ryan Newman, Kasey Kahne
    Darlington: Greg Biffle, Regan Smith
    Richmond: Dale Earnhardt Jr., Clint Bowyer, Kasey Kahne, Ryan Newman
    (NASCAR)(8-14-2016)
  • New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame names class of 2016: Former NASCAR champion and Maine native Ricky Craven will be inducted into the New England Auto Racers (NEAR) Hall of Fame as part of its eight-member Class of 2016. Craven, originally from Newburgh, joins drivers Ken Bouchard, Jerry Marquis, Randy Lajoie, Dwight Jarvis, Nokie Fornoro Jr., George Hewitt and announcer Jack Arute in this year’s class. Craven and his classmates will be inducted at a ceremony on Sunday, Nov. 13, in South Windsor, Connecticut. Craven’s career took off after an amazing 1991 season, during which he won 10 races and the NASCAR Busch North Series championship. “This is a very special honor,” Craven said via telephone from North Carolina. “To be recognized in the place where I started means so much to me. My years of racing in New England were very special, and I was fortunate to have the level of success I enjoyed in 1991. I had great teams and some strong support behind me throughout my driving career that made it all possible. There are some pretty big names in this year’s class, including drivers I’ve respected for many years.”(Sun Journal)(8-14-2016)
  • Kansas, Tickets for Less form partnership: Kansas Speedway and locally-based Tickets For Less, LLC announced a multi-year partnership that names Tickets For Less as the Official Secondary Market Ticket Partner of Kansas Speedway. As part of the partnership, Tickets for Less will offer an exclusive Family 4-Pack for Kansas Speedway NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races that includes 4 tickets, 4 pre-race passes, and 1 preferred parking pass. You can order a Family 4-Pack by visiting www.ticketsforless.com/family4pack. Tickets For Less is a private ticket broker that buys and sells tickets for all nationwide concert and sporting events on the secondary market. Tickets For Less is a reliable source for all events and focuses on providing the tickets you want with the service you deserve. Tickets For Less guarantees no fees at checkout, differentiating them from other ticket brokers. In addition, Tickets For Less offers top dollar for hard-to-get and premium tickets for nationwide concerts and sporting events.(Kansas Speedway)(8-14-2016)


    News from August 13, 2016


  • No additional Cup races lined up for Burton: Second-generation NASCAR driver Jeb Burton, son of 2002 Daytona 500 champion Ward Burton, is not set to make additional Sprint Cup Series starts on 2016 at this time. However, the Halifax, Virginia native has at least one more start in the second-tier XFINITY Series this season. “I don’t have any more Cup stuff planned,” Burton said. “I’m going to do some XFINITY stuff with Biagi-DenBeste Racing at Richmond with Estes.” Burton has competed in two Sprint Cup races this year with a best finish of 29th. He made both starts at Pocono Raceway driving the #32 Ford Fusion for Archie St. Hilaire’s Go Fas Racing. Mason St. Hilaire, general manager for the team, discussed the likelihood of bringing Burton back to drive the car this season. “We have only a couple more races open this year,” St. Hilaire said. “…We’ve got three races still open with driver and sponsor, and we’ll try to figure that out, but it’s not, you know, not a possibility. It could happen.”(Racing Experts)(8-13-2016)
  • Gordon wins go-kart race at Knoxville: Jeff Gordon returned to Knoxville, Iowa, and won Thursday’s Weld Racing Go-Kart Spectacular, an event that raised money for pediatric cancer research. Gordon was joined by Tony Stewart, Kasey Kahne and Kyle Larson, who each have ties to sprint car racing, to compete against fans at Slideways Karting Center just one mile north of Knoxville Raceway, where this week’s 56th annual 5-hour Energy Knoxville Nationals is being held. All proceeds from the fourth annual event, which saw race fans donate to compete against the Cup drivers, went to Kick-It, a partner of the Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation. Driving a kart painted to look like the first sprint car he raced in 1985, Gordon became the first two-time winner of the event after battling Stewart in the final laps. “That was amazing,” Gordon said. “If you don’t think we take this seriously, what you just saw was as competitive as it can get. That was so much fun. I think I got a blister, but it was all worth it.”(Motor Racing Network)(8-13-2016)
  • Justin Marks wins XFINITY race at Mid-Ohio: #42-Justin Marks won the Mid-Ohio 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. It is his 1st XFINITY Series win. Pole sitter #2-Sam Hornish, Jr finished second, followed by #22-Ryan Blaney, #3-Ty Dillon, #7-Justin Allgaier, #20-Erik Jones, #90-Andy Lally, #62-Brendan Gaughan, #1-Elliott Sadler, and #48-Brennan Poole.
    #40-Alon Day, making his XFINITY Series debut, finished 13th.
    The race started under dry conditions, but the first caution came out on lap 3 for rain. Teams switched to rain tires and ran with them through the halfway point of the race. The track dried and teams went back to slick tires before rain returned near the end of the race.
    There were 8 cautions for 32 laps and 13 lead changes among 8 leaders.
    The average speed was 53.437mph.
    Complete results are on the Mid-Ohio race results page (pdf).
    (8-13-2016)
  • Mid-Ohio XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Justin Marks won the 4th Annual Mid-Ohio Challenge, his first victory in 25 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his first victory and second top-10 finish in three races at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
    Sam Hornish Jr (second) posted his second top-10 finish in three races at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. It is his third top-10 finish in 2016.
    Ryan Blaney(i) (third) posted his first top-10 finish in one races at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
    Erik Jones (sixth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 25 points over Daniel Suarez.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-6-2016)
  • XFINITY Driver standings following Mid-Ohio:
    [12 drivers qualify for the XFINITY Series Chase. 5 more races until the Chase cutoff.]
    1) #1-Elliott Sadler [1 win], 700
    2) #19-Daniel Suarez [1 win], 675, -25
    3) #3-Ty Dillon, 667, -33
    4) #20-Erik Jones [3 wins], 648, -52
    5) #7-Justin Allgaier, 646, -54
    6) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 631, -69
    7) #48-Brennan Poole, 618, -82
    8) #33-Brandon Jones, 595, -105
    9) #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., 539, -161
    10) #16-Ryan Reed, 526, -174
    11) #39-Ryan Sieg, 483, -217
    12) #11-Blake Koch, 466, -234
    Currently outside the Chase:
    13) #4-Ross Chastain, 463, -237, 3 pts out of 12th
    14) #28-Dakoda Armstrong, 448, -252, -18
    15) #51-Jeremy Clements, 430, -270, -36
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(8-13-2016)
  • Watkins Glen XFINTIY TV Ratings: NASCAR Xfinity Series racing from Watkins Glen earned a 0.7 final rating and 1.0 million viewers on CNBC last Saturday afternoon, down 22% in ratings and 25% in viewership from last year on NBCSN (0.9, 1.4M) and down 46% and 56%, respectively, from 2014 on ABC (1.3, 1.9M). As should be no surprise, given the network and the competition, it was the second-least watched Xfinity Series race this year.(Sports Media Watch)(8-13-2016)
  • Napier to drive for Premium at Bristol: RWR Development driver, Bryce Napier will pilot the #49 Support Military/ASAP Appliance Service Chevy for Premium Motorsports during second NCWTS start at Bristol Motor Speedway. Napier made his NCWTS debut this past April, at Martinsville Speedway in the Alpha Energy 200 event piloting the MAKE Motorsports #1 truck. As the youngest driver, 16 years old, Napier had an impressive finish of 23rd. Napier gained much of his short track experience in California during the 2015 race season in the Kulwicki Driver Development Program (KDDP). KDDP was founded to help develop young drivers racing career; while honoring Alan Kulwicki, former NASCAR driver who passed in 1993 near Bristol Motor Speedway. Associate Support for Bryce Napier will continue to be SupportMilitary.org and the BeHero2Hero Program.(Bryce Napier)(8-13-2016)
  • Abreu wins at Knoxville during off-week: Rico Abreu won his first feature in the Knoxville Nationals on Friday night. Abreu came from to a field of 77 contestants to become the 196th feature winner at Knoxville Speedway. His victory in the 410 A Main allowed him to transfer to the Saturday’s A Main in the Knoxville Nationals. Abreu shot to the lead on the first lap with Danny Lasoski in chase followed by Brian Brown and Lucas Wolfe. Abreu led 25 laps and finished 1.536-second ahead of Greg Hodnett.(Motorsport.com)(8-13-2016)
  • 3 Doors Down in concert prior to Charlotte race: Triple-platinum rock legends 3 Doors Down will perform under the lights at the action-packed Bank of America 500, the only Saturday night race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, when the three-time GRAMMY nominees and personal friends of NASCAR stars Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Tony Stewart electrify a captivated crowd at the pre-race entertainment stage on Saturday, Oct. 8 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The full 60-minute 3 Doors Down Bank of America 500 pre-race concert will highlight the Bank of America 500 pre-race pit party, which will also include driver appearances, Q&As; with some of the biggest names in the sport and more. The band shares a long history with NASCAR. Earnhardt Jr. and Stewart were in the “Road I’m On” music video in 2003, and the band members individually have friendships with Earnhardt, Stewart and a number of other drivers. They have performed many times over the past two decades at NASCAR events and also sponsored an Earnhardt-owned car that Stewart drove in 2003. Earnhardt drove a car featuring the 3 Doors Down logo in 2005, and again in the 2008 NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.(CMS)(8-13-2016)


    News from August 12, 2016


  • Buescher unlikely to move to Roush next season: #34-Chris Buescher’s improbable and highly unusual first Sprint Cup victory at Pocono Raceway two weeks ago had little impact on how Roush Fenway Racing executives evaluate their prospect and 2015 Xfinity Series champion. The team already believed the 23-year-old was capable of winning at NASCAR’s highest level, president Steve Newmark told USA TODAY Sports, so winning in his work-study program at Front Row Motorsports on a fuel strategy gambit in a race halted prematurely because of rain and fog provided no new evidence. But even though Buescher now has more wins that the entirety of Roush Fenway’s three-car Sprint Cup contingent and a simpler route to Chase for the Sprint Cup qualification than Trevor Bayne, Greg Biffle or Ricky Stenhouse Jr., he is currently unlikely to be brought back aboard his parent team next season.
    “I don’t think that particular win monumentally changes the direction that we want to go with him,” Newmark said. “Our hope is to be in a position at some point to bring Chris back into Roush Fenway equipment at the Cup level. Right now we’ve got a great partnership with Front Row. I think they were excited that that possibility was available because we felt Chris was ready to get to the Cup level after his Xfinity championship last year and thought that would be really good experience. And it’s proven to be that.”
    It is unlikely, Newmark said, that Roush Fenway will expand to four cars for 2017 because of multiple factors. Sponsorship is always involved, and, he added, “we need to keep getting better on the race track.”(USA Today)(8-12-2016)
  • Jones not expected to remain at Furniture Row after 2017: Furniture Row Racing owner Barney Visser said that he is “fairly certain” Erik Jones, who has a one-year contract to drive for the team next year, will leave after the 2017 season but is confident in attracting a talented driver to the team’s second car for 2018. Visser made the comments Wednesday night on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio’s “Dailed In” show. Visser’s comments mirror what NBC Sports’ Nate Ryan reported last weekend – that Jones could return to Joe Gibbs Racing in 2018 or ’19. Visser said last weekend that “we hope to make (Jones’ contract) many more” years beyond 2017. On SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, Visser talked more about Jones and looking beyond next season with the organization’s second team. “If we don’t have him, we will have somebody else,” Visser told host Claire B. Lang. “With how we’re running, we will get a very, very good driver after he leaves, if he leaves, and I’m fairly certain he will. We will attract one of the best drivers in the garage for that second slot I am confident. The cars are just going to be running too well. The first car is running too well. It all builds on itself. It all kind of snowballs in the right direction.” Lang then asked Visser if he really felt Jones would leave the team. “I think probably so,” Visser said. “I think that’s most likely. We’re working on that. What I am saying is the team will go on no matter what and people need to understand that when they come looking for jobs.”(NBC Sports)(8-12-2016)
  • Hornish on XFINITY pole at Mid-Ohio: #2-Sam Hornish, Jr. won the Coors Light pole for the Mid-Ohio 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course with a speed of 96.374mph. #18-Owen Kelly will start second. The rest of the top 10: #22-Ryan Blaney, #1-Elliott Sadler, #19-Daniel Suarez, #20-Erik Jones, #3-Ty Dillon, #16-Ryan Reed, #98-Nelson Piquet, Jr., and #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr.
    The first round of qualifying was delayed slightly because of rain, but was able to be completed without any issues.
    Did Not Qualify: None.
    The starting lineup is posted on the Mid-Ohio starting lineup page (pdf).(8-12-2016)
  • Mid-Ohio Qualifying Notes:
    Sam Hornish Jr won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 4th Annual Mid-Ohio Challenge with a lap of 84.346 seconds, 96.374 mph.
    This is his eighth pole in 113 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first pole and third top-10 start in 2016.
    This is his second pole in three races at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
    Owen Kelly (second) posted his first top-10 start of 2016 and his second in two races at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
    Ryan Blaney(i) (third) posted his first top-10 start at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. It is his second in four races this season.
    Erik Jones (sixth) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-12-2016)
  • Latest on Matt Tifft: Matt Tifft hopes to return to a racecar soon as his recovery progress continues following brain surgery. Tifft held a Q&A; with fans Thursday on Twitter after saying he was bored while doctors continued to put him through tests. The Joe Gibbs Racing driver underwent surgery in early July to remove a brain tumor that doctors had found while he was being treated for a disc condition in his back. Tifft has not raced since. When asked how the recovery progress was going, Tifft replied “great” and said it was day 3 of 5 of his study. Tifft will miss his fifth scheduled race this weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course with Owen Kelly filling in. He remains hopeful, however, that he will be back behind the wheel soon although a timetable has not been announced. His next scheduled races were to be at Bristol Motor Speedway (Aug. 19) and Road America (Aug. 27). Tifft said he would provide another update after the study was over on Saturday.(NBC Sports)(8-12-2016)
  • Penske to expand back to two full-time XFINITY teams: Coming off of their first NASCAR XFINITY Series win of the season last weekend at Watkins Glen International with driver Joey Logano, Team Penske announced plans to return their NXS operation to a two-car Ford Mustang effort in 2017. The second Team Penske entry also clears the way for Ford Performance to use this entry as an extension of their new driver development program as both organizations continue to build for the future.
    “Our NASCAR XFINITY Series program has been one of the best in the series since we started running full-time in 2009,” said team owner Roger Penske. “For several years, we ran it as a two-car operation and then decided to focus primarily on the #22 for the last few years. Along the way, we developed a lot of people that have moved into our Cup programs, including all of our current NASCAR Sprint Cup crew chiefs. We want to win another XFINITY Series Championship while continuing to utilize our program to build human capital.”
    Team Penske’s NXS program ran sparingly between 2001 and 2008, winning nine races with drivers Ryan Newman and Kurt Busch. The team began competing full-time in 2009 and earned the NXS Driver’s Championship with Brad Keselowski in 2010. Since joining Ford in 2013, Team Penske has earned 29 XFINITY Series wins and has won back-to-back-to-back NXS Owners’ Championships. A driver and sponsorship on the second Ford Mustang will be announced at a later date.(Team Penske)(8-12-2016)
  • Hornish fastest in XFINITY final practice: #2-Sam Hornish, Jr. was fastest during final practice at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course with a speed of 95.977mph. #16-Ryan Reed was second, followed by: #98-Nelson Piquet, Jr., #22-Ryan Blaney, #1-Elliott Sadler, #3-Ty Dillon, #7-Justin Allgaier, #11-Blake Koch, #90-Andy Lally, and #33-Brandon Jones. 38 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Mid-Ohio practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(8-12-2016)
  • Ty Dillon fastest in first XFINITY practice: #3-Ty Dillon was fastest during opening practice at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course with a speed of 96.087mph. #2-Sam Hornish, Jr. was second, followed by: #33-Brandon Jones, #62-Brendan Gaughan, #22-Ryan Blaney, #1-Elliott Sadler, #7-Justin Allgaier, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #19-Daniel Suarez, and #42-Justin Marks. 38 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Mid-Ohio practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-12-2016)
  • Easton Corbin to perform concert before Dover race: Country music star Easton Corbin will perform a free concert at Dover International Speedway’s Victory Plaza prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Sunday, Oct. 2. Corbin will also sing the national anthem before the race, which will feature the first four driver eliminations of the 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship. Corbin’s Victory Plaza concert will begin at 11:00am/et. Corbin, a Florida native, rocketed on the country music scene in 2010 with his self-titled debut album, which included the No. 1 hits “A Little More Country Than That,” and “Roll With It.” The two top releases made him the first country male artist in 17 years to have his first two singles reach No. 1.(Dover Speedway)(8-12-2016)


    News from August 11, 2016


  • Watkins Glen warnings announced UPDATE: NASCAR has announced penalties and warnings following the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International on August 7th.
    #21-Blaney (4), Failed LIS twice in pre-race inspection, written Warning
    #42-Larson (1), Failed template inspection twice, prequalifying inspection, written Warning
    #21-Blaney (4), Failed LIS twice, pre-qualifying inspection, written Warning
    In addition, crew member Michael Casto has received a behavioral penalty for violation of NASCAR Substance Abuse Policy and had been indefinitely suspended from NASCAR.
    See the Watkins Glen Post-Event Penalty & Warning Report (pdf) for more.(8-10-2016)
    UPDATE: Jackman Mike Casto was indefinitely suspended by NASCAR for violating its substance-abuse policy. Casto, who missed the start of the season because of a shoulder injury, was Kevin Harvick’s jackman at Stewart-Haas Racing until June and then moved to the Front Row Motorsports car of Landon Cassill, according to the web site pittalks.com. Because SHR provides a pit crew to the Cassill team, Front Row Motorsports referred questions to SHR. An SHR spokesman said the team does not comment on personnel matters.(ESPN.com)(8-11-2016)
  • Congrats to #3-Austin Dillon and girlfriend Whitney Ward. Dillon announced their engagment in a Twitter post on Wednesday.(8-11-2016)
  • NASCAR Heat Evolution to feature 40-Player Races: NASCAR Heat Evolution began with a mission: deliver the most intense NASCAR racing experience. Working alongside Monster Games, known for developing classic NASCAR games like the original NASCAR Heat and NASCAR: Dirt to Daytona, we pushed ourselves to find innovative ways to make our racing vision a reality. That meant extensive car tuning options, adaptive AI that adjusts to your skill level, in-depth Career and Championship modes to capture the exhilaration of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, and a new Challenge mode for those who want to step into the cockpit of their favorite drivers and recreate real-life history. But the biggest thing we wanted to do to separate NASCAR Heat Evolution from any NASCAR title you’ve played before is in online competitive multiplayer. As the first official NASCAR game on PS4, we recognized we had the power to do things never before possible in a NASCAR game. So we committed to giving players the real deal: a full field of 40 racers in online multiplayer – 40 human players all going for the checkered flag in the same race. In previous NASCAR console games, each multiplayer game was hosted by a specific user, and that kind of peer-to-peer system could result in a number of issues – the host could leave, or have a poor connection, and that could negatively alter the entire race. We knew that system wouldn’t fly if we wanted to put 40 players together in NASCAR Heat Evolution. We built a new system where each online game’s data is hosted by a server. All race data comes from that server, so the entire race experience is no longer tied to any one player. Multiplayer will only feature human drivers on the track, so if there are 24 human players in a session, you will see 24 cars on screen. Your starting position is determined by previous lap times at that track. Those with faster lap times will start closer to the front, helping to ensure that players of equal racing ability are placed near one another for a clean start. If a player quits a race for any reason, their car will disappear from the race, but everyone else can continue to compete for the checkered flag.(PlayStation Blog)(8-11-2016)
  • Childress, Hendrick, Martin named Darlington Grand Marshals: Richard Childress, Rick Hendrick and Mark Martin, all of whom will be inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017, will serve as Grand Marshals for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on Sunday, Sept. 4. Accompanied by Bojangles’ CEO Clifton Rutledge, the three legends will give the command to start the engines for the iconic race – one that will again feature “throwback” paint schemes honoring NASCAR’s storied history and heritage. Childress and Hendrick are two of the most successful owners in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series history, and their combined seven NASCAR Sprint Cup Series cars will each feature special paint schemes for the race. In a 31-year career, Martin won 40 career NASCAR premier series races, including the 1993 and 2009 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. He also won eight NASCAR XFINITY Series races at Darlington, which is still the most in series history.(Darlington Raceway)(8-11-2016)
  • Cindric to run third BKR truck for multiple races: Brad Keselowski Racing announced that Austin Cindric will drive a third entry for the organization in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) race on August 17 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, plus upcoming races at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada) and Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway. PIRTEK, the industry leader in fluid transfer solution sales and service in the United States, will serve as primary sponsor of the #2 Ford F-150 driven by Cindric at Bristol. A planned test session at Bristol for Cindric and the #2 team scheduled for earlier this month was cancelled due to track maintenance. Cindric, 17, enters the race at Bristol fresh off a victory Aug. 5 in the NASCAR K&N; Pro Series East race at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International. Starting from the pole, Cindric led all 41 laps on the way to scoring his second victory in a row in the series. He claimed his first victory April 30 at Virginia International Raceway – also winning from the pole. Cindric made his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut in 2015 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway with BKR last October where he qualified 14th and ran well before a late-race incident relegated him to a 25th-place finish. His second NCWTS start came at Phoenix (Avondale, Ariz.) International Raceway a few weeks later, where he scored a respectable 14th-place finish. Cindric was scheduled to compete in the NCWTS race at Dover (Del.) International Speedway earlier this season. He was sixth quick in final practice but did not qualify for the race when time trials were rained out.(Brad Keselowski Racing)(8-11-2016)


    News from August 10, 2016


  • Hamlin’s Darlington throwback scheme unveiled: Joe Gibbs Racing unveiled #11-Denny Hamlin’s throwback scheme for Darlington on Wednesday afternoon. The SportClips Toyota is a throwback to Darrell Waltrip’s #11 1984 race car design.(8-10-2016), see an image of the car on the #11 team paint schemes page.(8-10-2016)
  • Clauson Honored With Decal at Mid-Ohio: To honor the life of Bryan Clauson, NASCAR XFINITY Series teams will run decals on the cars racing at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course this weekend. The BC decal will be placed on the A-Post of all cars in the NASCAR XFINITY Series.(NASCAR)(8-10-2016)
  • Johnson’s Darlington throwback scheme unveiled: #48-Jimmie Johnson’s Darlington throwback scheme will pay homage to the #2 car that David Pearson raced at Talladega in 1979 with Lowe’s on the hood. Pearson finished 2nd while filling in for rookie Dale Earnhardt, Sr. who had been injured in an accident at Pocono.(8-10-2016), see an image of the car on the #48 team paint schemes page.(8-10-2016)
  • Watkins Glen warnings announced: NASCAR has announced penalties and warnings following the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International on August 7th.
    #21-Blaney (4), Failed LIS twice in pre-race inspection, written Warning
    #42-Larson (1), Failed template inspection twice, prequalifying inspection, written Warning
    #21-Blaney (4), Failed LIS twice, pre-qualifying inspection, written Warning
    In addition, crew member Michael Casto has received a behavioral penalty for violation of NASCAR Substance Abuse Policy and had been indefinitely suspended from NASCAR.
    See the Watkins Glen Post-Event Penalty & Warning Report (pdf) for more.(8-10-2016)
  • Stenhouse, Jr. honoring Clauson at Knoxville: Knoxville Raceway tweeted Tuesday, that “[Bryan Clauson]’s 17w will Pace the Field on his qualifying night Thur with his best friend, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. behind the wheel.”.
    The 56th Annual 5-hour ENERGY Knoxville Nationals kick off Wednesday at Knoxville Raceway and run through Saturday.(8-10-2016)
  • Watkins Glen TV Ratings UPDATE: NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Watkins Glen earned a 2.1 overnight rating on USA Network Sunday afternoon, down 13% from last year on NBCSN (2.4) and down 30% from 2014 on ESPN (3.0). The last time the race aired opposite the Olympics, 2012, it earned a 2.7 on ESPN. Seven of the past nine Sprint Cup races have posted declines in the metered markets, not including the two rained out Pocono races.(Sports Media Watch via Sports Business Daily)(8-9-2016)
    UPDATE: NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Watkins Glen (NY) earned a 2.3 final rating and 3.8 million viewers on USA Network Sunday afternoon, down 8% in ratings and 4% in viewership from last year on NBCSN (2.5, 4.0M) and down 26% and 22%, respectively, from 2014 on ESPN (3.1, 4.9M). The last time the race aired opposite the Olympics, 2012, it had a 2.8 and 4.5 million.(Sports Media Watch), see race-by-race TV Ratings for 2016 and a comparison chart on the 2016 TV Ratings page.(8-10-2016)
  • Large number of pit road penalties at Waktins Glen: This past weekend there were seven penalties called on pit crews by seven different teams. It’s the second highest penalties since the first race of the year which had a total of twelve penalties. The main reason for this…Watkins Glen. The penalties laid out like this: (2) Crewmen over the wall too soon, (3) Tire not in control, and (2) Tossing or throwing fuel fillers. Two of the three penalties that were called we see almost every week or every other week. The “Crewman over the wall too soon” and “Tire not in control” are both penalties that are common. This particular race had a few more than normal because of the where they were racing. I mentioned it earlier in a post before WG that leaving early would get a few teams because the timing of this stop is not what a normal stop is. The “Tire not in control” penalty on the #19 was another victim of track. Because the stops are backwards they had their right front tire get away and that would never happen on a normal stop. The last two penalties of “Tossing Fuel Fillers” is 100% because of WG. Everyone knows fuel is huge at this place and teams are pushing the limits to max out their fuel while doing a fast stop. Its comes as no secret that some teams got busted trying to hurry up the stop and move cans faster than NASCAR liked. These 7 penalties from today bring the year total of pit crew related penalties on pit road to a total of 80.(PitTalks)(8-10-2016)
  • Teams test at Homestead: Since its inception in 2014, the revamped Chase format in the Sprint Cup Series has featured electrifying drama in the season-finale championship race at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Starting in 2016, the same thrill and excitement of the Chase will be implemented in the XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series, marking the first time in NASCAR history that the Championship 4 from each division will compete for their respective crown during Ford Championship Weekend. On Monday and Tuesday of this week, the top two drivers in 2016 from the XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series-XFINITY Series rookie Erik Jones (three wins) and Camping World Truck Series rookie William Byron (five wins)-headed a lineup of four drivers who took part in a testing session at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Cole Custer, a Camping World Truck Series driver for JR Motorsports and Christopher Bell, a Camping World Truck Series driver for Kyle Busch Motorsports were the other drivers who participated. Although testing was abbreviated on Monday due to rain, the drivers found the testing to be extremely beneficial.(Homestead- Miami Speedway)(8-10-2016)
  • Owen Kelly in the #18 at Mid-Ohio: Thirty-nine year old Australian driver Owen Kelly returns to American motorsports this week in support of the Joe Gibbs Racing NASCAR XFINITY Series team and the #18 Tunity Toyota at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, for series race 21 of 33 events. Kelly will attempt to secure his first and the team’s 10th season XFINITY Series win on the 2.258-mile road course Saturday. For this week’s event the Tunity brand logo will be showcased on the number 18 car’s primary paint scheme. Tunity offers NASCAR fans the ability to scan any muted live TV and stream its audio directly to their personal devices. Yaniv Davidson, founder and CEO of Tunity describes this week’s effort, “We are excited to race with the number 18 and Owen Kelly this week, and allow millions of NASCAR fans to hear the race anywhere they are, in a bar, restaurant, at the gym or while waiting at the airport. We look forward to continuing the relationship and we are filled with anticipation for the return of Matt Tifft to the driver’s seat – he’s an amazing rising talent and we’re proud to be his partner”. While Kelly primarily has raced in the Australia Supercar Series the past 12 years, the Tasmania native has four NASCAR top-tier series races under his belt, one in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in 2013 and three in the NASCAR XFINITY Series during 2010 and 2013. In 2013 he drove a previous schedule with Joe Gibbs Racing in the XFINITY Series when he competed at both the Mid-Ohio Sports-Car Course with a strong run (23rd result, accident) and the upcoming Elkhart Lake road-course event with a top-five finish (4th result).(Joe Gibbs Racing), see an image of the car on the #18 team paint schemes page.(8-10-2016)
  • Timmy Hill in the #70 at Mid-Ohio & Race America: Derrike Cope Racing with JP Motorsports heads to the MidOhio Sports Car Course with many great partners. Derrike Cope is delighted to announce that he will have Timmy Hill driving the #70 at both Mid-Ohio and Road America this month. A proven driver in both the Camping World Truck and Xfinity Series, and most successful at road courses, with his best finish being 11th at Road America, Cope says he feels confident with Hill in the car. As a coprimary, Ehydrate offers the world’s most advanced line of hydration, protein, and energy products. Their products range from kids, to adults, to active adults. Available at Target and GNC stores across the nation. As an associate partner, #70 continues to have the support of IceFrost, a mineral based ice additive that brings your cooler to the temperature of a freezer. Also as an associate will be Spruce Hill Inn & Cottages. Providing food for #DCRTeam70 all weekend we have Ed Picken’s Cafe on Main as an associate sponsor on the #70.(Derrike Cope Racing)(8-10-2016)
  • Truck Chase outlook with four races remaining: The pressure is on with only four races remaining for winless NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers to lock up the final three berths for the Chase, beginning with the UNOH 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway. The Chase Grid shapes up as follows: William Byron (5 wins), Matt Crafton (2 wins), Johnny Sauter (1 win), Christopher Bell (1 win), John Hunter Nemechek (1 win), Daniel Hemric (31 points ahead of Ben Kennedy on the cutoff line), Timothy Peters (+31) and Cameron Hayley (+0, tiebreaker). The first six drivers out are Ben Kennedy (-0, out via tiebreaker), Tyler Reddick (-1), Cole Custer (-5), Ben Rhodes (-18), Rico Abreu (-33) and Spencer Gallagher (-35).(NASCAR)(8-10-2016)
  • Teams test at Homestead: Since its inception in 2014, the revamped Chase format in the Sprint Cup Series has featured electrifying drama in the season-finale championship race at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Starting in 2016, the same thrill and excitement of the Chase will be implemented in the XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series, marking the first time in NASCAR history that the Championship 4 from each division will compete for their respective crown during Ford Championship Weekend. On Monday and Tuesday of this week, the top two drivers in 2016 from the XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series-XFINITY Series rookie Erik Jones (three wins) and Camping World Truck Series rookie William Byron (five wins)-headed a lineup of four drivers who took part in a testing session at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Cole Custer, a Camping World Truck Series driver for JR Motorsports and Christopher Bell, a Camping World Truck Series driver for Kyle Busch Motorsports were the other drivers who participated. Although testing was abbreviated on Monday due to rain, the drivers found the testing to be extremely beneficial.(Homestead- Miami Speedway)(8-10-2016)


    News from August 9, 2016


  • O’Donnell says NASCAR will look at post-race celebrations: Citing a “trend we don’t like to see,” a NASCAR executive hinted Tuesday of a rule change that would soon curb post-race victory celebrations. Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, made the comments on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio two days after Denny Hamlin’s victory celebration at Watkins Glen forced him to walk to victory lane. “It’s a trend we don’t like to see,” O’Donnell said of winning cars damaged in victory celebrations. “We want to see a celebration, and we think that drivers can celebrate without doing that. So, you’ll probably see us sooner than later put something in place that covers us for that as you kind of head into the last quarter of the season. Again not there yet. We’re talking to a lot of the teams about it, but I think everybody is on board with the direction we want to go in.” Section 8.5.2.1.c in the Sprint Cup Rule Book states that “the first-place vehicle may engage in appropriate celebratory activity (such as a victory lap, burn-out(s) or donuts) prior to reporting to victory circle.” Any damage during a victory celebration, though, could impact NASCAR’s ability to properly inspect the winning car afterward and ensure that everything was legal with the vehicle. Questions have been raised before about excessive celebrations that damage the winning car and how that could impact NASCAR’s post-race inspection process. In March 2015, a NASCAR official told NBC Sports that if series officials believed that such damage from a celebration affected inspection after the race that they would address the matter.(NBC Sports)(8-10-2016)
  • Truex Jr. and Keselowski comment on last lap incident at Watkins Glen: on the final turn of the final lap of the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International on Sunday, with #78-Martin Truex Jr. pressuring eventual race winner #11-Denny Hamlin and #2-Brad Keselowski third, contact from Keselowski’s #2 Ford sent Truex’s #78 Toyota spinning. #22-Joey Logano took advantage of the melee to finish second ahead of Keselowski. Truex finished seventh. Quotes by Truex Jr. and Keselowski:
    Q) What are your thoughts on the last lap of the race and what happened with Brad Keselowski?
    Truex Jr,: “Yeah, definitely unfortunate. I wish we could’ve seen what would’ve happened when we got to the start finish line. I felt like I maybe had the 11 (Denny Hamlin) squared up a little bit off (turn) 11 and maybe could’ve drag raced him to the line but it’d have been fun to see but it was all not to be with getting hit in the left rear. It’s unfortunate, but hard racing at the end, all of us going for a win and all of us locked in the Chase it’s – I guess he (Brad Keselowski) kind of races with that mentality that hey, it doesn’t really matter where we finish or if we finish so just have to be mindful of that when we’re around him for the rest of the time. All in all a good day for us. We had a good race car. Had a battle all day long to get from 14th to the front and got a shot at winning at the end. That’s all you can ask for.”(Toyota Racing)
    WALK US THROUGH THE FINAL COUPLE OF CORNERS THERE COMING TO THE CHECKERED FLAG:
    Keselowski: “I thought we had a really good Miller Lite Ford Fusion and got pushed back on a couple of the restarts. I was trying to sort my way back to the front and just couldn’t quite get there at the end. I got right up to the bumper of the 78 and couldn’t do anything there and he made a move to get by the 11 on the inside and the 11 blocked him. I went high and the 78 went high and by then I was already deep in the corner and got into him and turned him. That was really unfortunate and the last thing I wanted to see. This track here, when you drive into the corner, you commit and sometimes you don’t know what will happen when you commit. The last thing I wanted to do was turn him. I am proud of my guys for a really fast race car and it was another crazy Watkins Glen day.”
    YOUR TAKE ON THE CONTACT WITH TRUEX COMING OFF THE FINAL CORNER:
    Keselowski: “Yeah, it was obviously my fault when you run into the back of somebody. I saw the 11 was blocking low and thought the 78 would get in behind and rub up the 11 and I wanted to be outside to make a cross-over and see if I couldn’t get both. At the last minute he came back up and I was already committed. I didn’t think he would come back up. You make a commitment before you know what is going to happen and I made a commitment and it didn’t work out. He got the bad end of it. I hit him from behind and that is my fault. Luckily with the way this Chase is, he probably won’t want to hear it, but it doesn’t hurt him too bad.”(Ford Performance)(8-9-2016)
  • Watkins Glen TV Ratings: NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Watkins Glen earned a 2.1 overnight rating on USA Network Sunday afternoon, down 13% from last year on NBCSN (2.4) and down 30% from 2014 on ESPN (3.0). The last time the race aired opposite the Olympics, 2012, it earned a 2.7 on ESPN. Seven of the past nine Sprint Cup races have posted declines in the metered markets, not including the two rained out Pocono races.(Sports Media Watch via Sports Business Daily), see race-by-race TV Ratings for 2016 and a comparison chart on the 2016 TV Ratings page.(8-9-2016)
  • Lap Leaders after 22 races:
    Driver, Laps Led
    1) #78-Martin Truex Jr, 990
    2) #18-Kyle Busch, 986
    3) #4-Kevin Harvick, 829
    4) #19-Carl Edwards, 710
    5) #20-Matt Kenseth, 469
    6) #2-Brad Keselowski, 373
    7) #22-Joey Logano, 289
    8) #41-Kurt Busch, 234
    9) #48-Jimmie Johnson, 229
    10) #11-Denny Hamlin, 183
    34 drivers have led at least one lap
    Through August 7
  • Three drivers had top-fives in both road course races: Three drivers scored top-five finishes on both road courses this season: #11-Denny Hamlin won at Watkins Glen and was second at Sonoma; #22-Joey Logano was second at Watkins Glen and third at Sonoma; #14-Tony Stewart was fifth at Watkins Glen and won at Sonoma.(NBC)(8-9-2016)
  • Throwback schemes at Darlington: Several race teams have announced their throwback paint schemes for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 with more to come. So far cars that have been unveiled: #2-Brad Keselowski, #3-Austin Dillon, #4-Kevin Harvick, #6-Trevor Bayne, #7-Regan Snith, #13-Casey Mears, #14-Tony Stewart, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #18-Kyle Busch, #19-Carl Edwards, #21-Ryan Blaney, #22-Joey Logano, #23-David Ragan, #24-Chase Elliott, #27-Paul Menard, #31-Ryan Newman, #32-Jeffrey Earnhardt, #41-Kurt Busch, #43-Aric Almirola, #47-AJ Allmendinger, #83-Matt DiBenedetto, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #95-Michael McDowell.
    Images of the schemes can be seen on Jayski.com’s Darlington Throwback paint schemes page.(8-9-2015)
  • Jeffrey Earnhardt to race in Canada in August: BRP will serve as the title sponsor for the 2016 August Weekend NASCAR Pinty’s Series race at the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivi�res (GP3R). The race, scheduled for Sunday, August 14, 2016 will be named ‘Les 50 Tours Can-Am’. Go FAS Racing Canada team will have two drivers on the track sporting Can-Am’s yellow and black colors for the 2016 August (14th) Weekend NASCAR Pinty’s Series race at the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivi�res. 2014 ACT champion driver Alex Labb�, one of the rising stars of the Canadian NASCAR circuit and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Jeffrey Earnhardt will both be representing the Can-Am brand at GP3R. BRP and its Can-Am brand, through its association with Kappa and Cyclops Gear, is the primary sponsor of the #32 Go FAS Racing Canada team for all the NASCAR Pinty’s Series races in Canada in 2016. BRP is also a proud partner of the #32 Go FAS Racing team in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in the United States.(BRP)(8-9-2015)
  • Hornish returns to the #2: Sam Hornish Jr. will pilot chassis No. 133 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course this weekend. This Richard Childress Racing-prepared Chevrolet finished second last weekend at Watkins Glen International with Paul Menard behind the wheel. In two previous NASCAR XFINITY Series starts at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Hornish has notched one top-five finish. He holds an average starting position of 4.5, coupled with an average finishing position of 16.5 with 15 laps led. This weekend’s road course race takes Hornish to his home state of Ohio. Hailing from Defiance, Ohio, Hornish has been heavily involved in his community for many years. He was involved in the creation of a senior center, as well as the addition of a heart center at the Defiance Medical Center. Hornish now resides in Napoleon, Ohio with his wife and three children.(Richard Childress Racing)(8-9-2016)
  • Brandon Brown to make XFINITY debut at Richmond: Brandon Brown, 22, from Fredericksburg Virginia will make his NASCAR Xfinity Series debut this year, September 9th 2016 at Richmond International Speedway. GMS Racing will provide a race car along with technical support. GMS Racing is one of the strongest teams on the track with multiple wins. Brown’s dream is to one day compete in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with his racing heroes. He is a step closer to living out his dream, thanks to GMS Racing. Brandonbilt Motorsports walked into the 2016 season with great success. The team scored a top five finish at Daytona International Speedway with P4. Since then, Brandon Brown has been improving his finishes compared to past years. Brandonbilt Motorsports is growing in size, technology, equipment and achievement.(Brandonbilt Motorsports)(8-9-2016)
  • Kaulig Racing honoring Darrell Waltrip with Darlington throwback: Joining the celebration to honor history at Darlington Raceway, Kaulig Racing will don the usual LeafFilter green, this time with a twist, paying tribute to Darrell Waltrip’s 1981-82 #11 Mountain Dew Buick Regal during the NASCAR XFINITY Series VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200, September 3rd. Of Waltrip’s 84 career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series wins, then the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, 24 of them came with the Mountain Dew paint scheme, including one win at Darlington Raceway in 1981 in the CRC Chemicals Rebel 500. Waltrip would go on to win his first series championship in 1981, doubling-up with his second in 1982, both with Mountain Dew onboard his Buick.(Kaulig Racing), see an image of the car on the #11 team paint schemes page.(8-9-2016)
  • Red Horse adds more races with Moffitt: Brett Moffitt will return to the #11 Red Horse Racing Toyota Tundra for the next three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series events, at Bristol Motor Speedway, Michigan International Speedway and Canadian Tire Motorsports Park. Moffitt has driven the #11 Tundra twice this season, once at Kentucky Speedway where an engine failure ended his day early after a strong run, and also at Pocono Raceway, where the 24-year-old finished third.(Red Horse Racing)(8-9-2016)
  • Rhodes adds Bristol sponsor: Ben Rhodes, and Alpha Energy Solutions, in conjunction with ThorSport Racing, are pleased to announce a partnership with Regal Cinemas, a leading motion picture exhibitor owning and operating one of the largest theatre circuits in the United States, for the 19th Annual UNOH 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) race at Bristol Motor Speedway on Wednesday, August 17. The Knoxville, Tennessee-based company will adorn the #41 Toyota Tundra of Sunoco Rookie of the Year contender, Rhodes, as he makes his track debut in the NCWTS at the half-mile paperclip. Regal Cinemas, which was founded in 1989, is the one of the largest and most geographically diverse theatre circuits in America, consisting of 7,307 screens in 564 locations in 42 states along with American territories Guam, Saipan, American Samoa, Grand Cayman, and the District of Columbia. At Regal theatres, you can enjoy the latest blockbusters like never before with RealD Digital 3D, the Regal Premium Experience theatres, and The IMAX Experience.(See an image of the truck on the #41 Team Paint Schemes page)(ThorSport Racing)(8-9-2016)


    News from August 8, 2016


     

  • Watkins Glen Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 2016 Cheez-It 355 at the Glen: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday’s race. Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 2:30 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 5:50 PM (all times are EDT). USA was the broadcast team for this event, due to Olympic coverage byNBC/NBCSN.
    Total number of commercials: 105
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 46
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 76
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 40
    Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 29
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 26
    Number of times USA utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 5
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 3 min. 40 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 2:30 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 5:50 PM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 180
    Minutes of race broadcast: 166
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 34
    Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 10
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of ‘mystery cautions’ (debris not shown): 0
    Total race brdcst time 166 Total comm. brdcst time 34
    See past races, more info on the commercials with links at CawsnJaws.com.(8-8-2016)
  • Allmendinger not happy with himself over spinning Larson: If it hadn’t been for the final corner of the final lap on Sunday at Watkins Glen, #47-AJ Allmendinger would have enjoyed a proud moment, battling back from an early pit road speeding penalty for a top-five finish. But the afternoon ended on a sour note when a tap from Allmendinger’s Chevy sent Kyle Larson’s #42-Chevy spinning into the inside barrier as the drivers were battling in Turn 7 on the last lap. Allmendinger finished fourth, but Larson dropped to 29th, with his Chase hopes taking a serious blow. “I turned him – not on purpose,” a rueful Allmendinger said after the race. “The #78 (Martin Truex Jr.) started to spin, and Kyle and I were racing for fifth there. He defended on the inside, which he should have. And I tried to cut under him off of the last corner, and the #78 was coming back across the race track. I was under him. He turned. And I just clipped him. I’m just not very happy with myself on that. I don’t want to do that, especially for fourth place. And he did a great job. It’s on me. I never meant to do it. It’s not going to help the case. I know he’s going to be pissed off, and he should be pissed off. I’d be. I definitely cost us a chance to win this race (with the speeding penalty). I tried to give everything I had to get it back. I was going to be pretty happy with the drive back – until I did that in the last corner.”
    As Allmendinger predicted, the accident didn’t sit well with Larson. “We were about a 10th-place car, and we were going to get a top-five day out of it,” Larson said. “We were running sixth coming to (Turn) 7; the #47 was behind me. He is always aggressive. I figured he would be smart. Obviously, the #78 was spinning in front of us. That is a free spot for both of us, and (he) just dumped me. He had already ran me down to the front stretch wall once with about 15 (laps) to go or so. Pretty dumb move right there, too, but I was the smarter one racing for points, lifted, could have wrecked him, but didn’t. I don’t know. I don’t know. He wrecked me earlier in the year at Vegas. He has ran me hard, but we always race pretty well, but today was flat out stupid. I love his crew chief (Randall Burnett) to death; he was our engineer last year. It just sucks they are going to have to start building some more race cars because he’s got a few coming.”(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-8-2016)
  • IndyCar’s Newgarden drops hints of running NASCAR: While visiting Watkins Glen Raceway on Sunday morning, IndyCar driver Josef Newgarden said he would be open to competing in a NASCAR race if the right opportunity came along. Newgarden, 25, a Tennessee native, said he was particularly interested in running a NASCAR short track race at a facility like Iowa Speedway, or maybe even a road course. “I have a huge interest (in driving a NASCAR car),” Newgarden said. “Open wheel was always my interest as a kid. That always has a special place for me. I want to win Indy 500s. But I’d love to see guys cross over more. I know a lot of (stock car) guys who want to run the Indy 500. But in today’s day and age it’s become less acceptable to cross paths, people don’t go into other people’s territory. I’d love to see that change. I’d love to do an IndyCar race one weekend and the next weekend run a NASCAR race. That’s a big goal.” Conversely, Newgarden predicted that a few NASCAR drivers currently working for high-profile teams may compete in next year’s Indianapolis 500. Newgarden said he personally knew of several Sprint Cup drivers hoping to run the Indy 500 at some point in the future, and perhaps a smaller number — he specifically said two or three — would be good bets to attempt next May’s Memorial Day double. He smiled and refused to name names, however.(NASCAR.com)(8-8-2016)
  • Kurt Busch trying to set record for running all laps UPDATE: #41-Kurt Busch seeks to do something this weekend that hasn’t been done in NASCAR. Run every lap for the most consecutive races to start a season. Busch enters Sunday’s race at Pocono Raceway on NBCSN having completed all 5,673 laps in the first 20 races. No driver has completed every lap through the the first 21 Cup races in a season. Busch tied Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the record this past weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway when Busch completed every lap on the way to finishing 16th. Earnhardt set the mark in 2012 by completing every lap in the first 20 races of the season. In the 21st race, which was at Pocono, Earnhardt fell 18 laps short of the distance in the rain-shortened race. Busch’s consistency this season has led to 15 top-10 finishes, second only to Stewart-Haas Racing teammate Kevin Harvick, who has 16. #2-Brad Keselowski has run all but 8 laps this season.(NBC Sports)(7-28-2016)
    UPDATE: Busch completed all 138 laps on Monday at Pocono Speedway. He has now completed every lap in the first 21 race.(8-2-2016)
    UPDATE2: Busch completed all 90 laps on Sunday at Watkins Glen and he has now completed every lap in the first 22 races of the season. Busch has a overall streak of 25 races in a row finishing on the lead lap, the best streak since Carl Edwards had a 28 race streak for July 2015 at Kentucky thru May 2016 at Talladega, see the list on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Odd Stats page (8-8-2016)
  • Sad News – Bryan Clauson: Bryan Clauson, 27, died Sunday evening from injuries sustained in a crash the night before at the Belleville (Kan.) Nationals midget race on the half-mile dirt oval. Clauson was airlifted to Bryan Medical Center in Lincoln, Neb., but did not survive. The native Californian earned a USAC-INDYCAR scholarship for winning the 2010 USAC national driver’s title. The scholarship earned Clauson six Indy Lights starts in 2011 in a car shared with current Verizon IndyCar Series rookie Conor Daly at Sam Schmidt Motorsports while Clauson continued to race in USAC’s national series. His best finish in eight career Indy Lights was third at Iowa Speedway in 2011. Clauson won the scholarship award again in 2012, allowing him to make his Indianapolis 500 debut in 2012 with Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing, qualifying 31st and finishing 30th. Clauson returned to Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2015, finishing 31st in the Indy 500 for KVSH/Jonathan Byrd’s Racing. Clauson also served as a development driver for Chip Ganassi Racing in 2007-08, winning an ARCA race in 2007. He made 21 NASCAR Xfinity Series starts in 2008, finishing second in rookie points where he teamed occasionally with three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti.
    Statement from family of Bryan Clauson: The family of Indy 500 veteran and USAC champion driver Bryan Clauson released the following statement this morning: “Last night, the 7th of August, we said goodbye to our son, my fianc�, our friend, Bryan Clauson. He was surrounded by family and friends and we were grateful that we could experience his final moments with him. Our Bryan fought to the end with the same desire that he demonstrated behind the wheel of all the various race cars he would park in victory lane. However, we were more proud of our Bryan that took a moment to make a young fan’s day, or demonstrated his uncommon kindness and appreciation toward his friends, family and fans. We would like to thank everybody who has shown their concern toward us and kept us in their prayers. We will never be able to truly thank you. We would also like to thank the staff at Bryan Medical Center who stood and fought with our Bryan since he arrived here early yesterday morning. We know that our Bryan is also your Bryan and that you would like to participate in honoring him. A service will be held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway at a date and time to be announced soon. In lieu of flowers, or to make a donation, people may direct their contributions to the USAC Benevolent Fund website or checks should be made out to the USAC Benevolent Foundation in the name of Bryan Clauson. The address is 124 E Northfield Drive, Suite F #129, Brownsburg, IN 46112.
    Thank you for being a part of our Bryan’s life. Lauren, Tim, Di, and Taylor.”(IMS)(8-8-2016)
  • XFINITY Entry List: There are 40 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s Mid-Ohio 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. A few notes:
    Sam Hornish returns to the RCR #2;
    Tim Cowen will be in the #13;
    The #14 will again be Tomy Drissi;
    Stanton Barrett returns to the #15;
    The JGR #18 is TBA;
    Ryan Blaney will drive the #22 for Team Penske;
    Ryan Ellis will drive the RWR #25;
    The Mike Harmon #74 is TBA;
    The Obiaka Racing #77 & #97 are TBA;
    Kenny Habul remains in the JRM #88;
    Nelson Piquet, Jr will drive the #98 for Biagi.(8-8-2015)
    See the complete list on the Mid-Ohio entry list page.
  • Ryan Ellis picks up Mid-Ohio sponsorship: Bachtel Excavating of Massillon, Ohio will join as a primary sponsor of the #25 Chevrolet of Rick Ware Racing when it competes at Mid Ohio Sports Car Course this Saturday on the USA network. This will be driver Ryan Ellis’ 4th time this year racing with the Rick Ware team and 10th overall Xfinity race of the season. Bachtel Excavating Inc., based out of Massillon Ohio is committed to being the most professional and respected excavating company in Northeast Ohio. Bachtel Excavating, Inc. has been providing general excavating services to residential, commercial and industrial clients for two decades. The company caters to both commercial and residential clients, performing site clearing, demolition, erosion control, gas services, sanitary sewers, and many more projects. Additional sponsors for this weekend will include Lilly Trucking, Carport Empire, Dashub, SupportMilitary.org, Superlite Cars, Pet Paradise of Lake Norman, and the Kappa Sigma Fraternity.(Ryan Ellis Motorsports)(8-8-2016)
  • Rain-X/Advance Auto Parts to Sponsor Brandon Jones at Homestead: Rain-X, a market leader in wiper blade technology, and Advance Auto Parts, a leading automotive aftermarket parts provider in North America, will serve as the primary sponsors on Brandon Jones’ #33 Chevrolet Camaro for the NASCAR XFINITY Series season-finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Nov. 19, 2016. The partnership with Richard Childress Racing will highlight the new Rain-X Latitude Water Repellency Wiper Blades, available at participating Advance Auto Parts stores nationwide and in Puerto Rico. The new blades feature the proven wipe quality of Rain-X Latitude blade, now with an advanced technology that coats windshields with repellency benefits for even better driving visibility.(Richard Childress Racing)(8-8-2016)
  • Bristol track surface undergoes change: Jerry Caldwell, general manager at Bristol Motor Speedway, confirmed the changes to the racing surface. They include: a “polishing” of the lower racing groove, the addition of a substance that will help tire rubber adhere to the racing surface, and the running of a tire machine on the surface since the changes. The tire machine is similar to the one used at Kentucky Speedway prior to its July race. The track completed its own repaving project this season. “After the Food City 500 in the spring, we evaluated the track surface and decided to make some minor modifications to the lower racing groove,” Caldwell said. “We made the changes in consultation with NASCAR and several top Cup series drivers.” Among the drivers consulted were Tony Stewart, Brad Keselowski and Dale Earnhardt Jr. The changes were completed only this week and the Truck Series will be the first to drive on the surface when it conducts practice sessions on Aug. 17, prior to its race that night.(Motorsport / wcyb.com)(8-8-2016)


    News from August 7, 2016


  • Denny Hamlin wins at Watkins Glen: #11-Denny Hamlin won the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International for his 2nd win of the season, 1st win at Watkins Glen, 1st road course win and 28th career win.
    #22-Logano finished 2nd followed by #2-Keselowski, #47-Allmendinger, #14-Stewart, #18-Busch, #78-Truex Jr., #1-McMurray, #6-Bayne and #20-Kenseth.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson finished last (40th) in a Sprint Cup race for the first time in his career after being involved in a four-car wreck on lap 53.
    #10-Danica Patrick led 11 laps, a career best for a single Sprint Cup event, exceeding the seven laps she had led on two occasions at Talladega.
    Joe Gibbs Racing now has the most wins at Watkins Glen in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with seven.
    There were 9 lead changes among 8 drivers and 8 cautions for 20 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 89.513 mph.
    See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and more [NOTE: money/winnings are no longer reported] at:
    Unofficial Race Results page (pdf)
    Lap Summary Report (pdf)
    Penalty Report (pdf)
    Pit Stop Times (pdf)
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Watkins Glen Race & Points Report (pdf).(8-7-2016)
  • Breakdown of wins by driver in the #11:
    Cale Yarborough (55)(won 3 championships in car #11)
    Ned Jarrett (49)(won 2 championships in car #11)
    Darrell Waltrip (43)(won 3 championships in car #11)
    Denny Hamlin (28)(Daytona 500)
    Junior Johnson (11)
    Bill Elliott (6)
    Geoff Bodine (4)
    Terry Labonte (4)
    Bobby Allison (3)
    Buddy Baker (2)
    A.J. Foyt (1)
    Mario Andretti (1)(won 1967 Daytona 500)
    Parnelli Jones (1)(1st driver to win in #11)
    TOTAL WINS = 208 (8-7-2016)
  • Race Fast Facts – Watkins Glen International:
    #11-Denny Hamlin won the 31st Annual Cheez-It 355 at The Glen, his 28th victory in 384 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his second victory and 11th top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his first victory and fifth top-10 finish in 11 races at Watkins Glen International.
    #22-Joey Logano (second) posted his fifth top-10 finish in eight races at Watkins Glen International. It is his 14th top-10 finish in 2016.
    #2-Brad Keselowski (third) posted his fifth top-10 finish in seven races at Watkins Glen International.
    #24-Chase Elliott (13th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    #2-Brad Keselowski leads the point standings by 9 points over #4-Kevin Harvick.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(8-7-2016)
  • 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup CHASE Standings:
    [after Watkins Glen, race 22 of 36, 16 drivers for the Chase]
    Set by most wins, then by points standing
    1) #2-Keselowski [4 wins], 1st in driver points
    2) #18-Busch [4], 4th in driver points
    3) #19-Edwards [2], 5th
    4) #11-Hamlin [2], 7th
    5) #20-Kenseth [2], 9th
    6) #48-Johnson [2], 10th
    7) #4-Harvick [1], 2nd
    8) #41-Busch [1], 3rd
    9) #22-Logano [1], 6th
    10) #78-Truex, Jr. [1], 8th
    11) #14-Stewart [1], 26th
    no wins, in by drivers points standings
    12) #31-Newman, 11th in drivers points, 51 ahead of 17th
    13) #24-Elliott, 12th, +49
    14) #3-Dillon, 13th, +47
    15) #1-McMurray, 14th, +39
    16) #42-Larson, 15th, +8
    has a win, but not in top-30, not in Chase
    #34-Buescher, 31st in points, 292, 3 pts behind 30th
    no wins, not in the Chase
    17) #6-Bayne, 16th, -28 out of 16th
    18) #5-Kahne, 17th, -10 pts
    19) #21-Blaney, 18th, -18 pts
    20) #47-Allmendinger, 19th, -34pts
    (8-7-2016)
  • 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Driver Points (not CHASE) Standings:
    [after Watkins Glen, race 22 of 36]
    1) #2-Keselowski [4 wins], 727
    2) #4-Harvick [1], 718, -9
    3) #41-Busch [1], 689, -38
    4) #18-Busch, [4], 670, -57
    5) #19-Edwards [2], 653, -74
    6) #22-Logano [1], 652, -75
    7) #11-Hamlin, 620, -107
    8) #78-Truex Jr. [1], 612, -115
    9) #20-Kenseth [2], 600, -127
    10) #48-Johnson [2], 578, -149
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and
    Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf)
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Watkins Glen Race & Points Report (pdf).
  • Johnson involved in early wreck at Watkins Glen: #48-Jimmie Johnson was involved in multi-car crash on lap 53 at Watkins Glen International:
    Q) IT’S BEEN A ROUGH DAY FOR YOU, WHICH IS ONE OF THE REASONS YOU WERE BACK IN THE PACK. WHAT DID YOU SEE?
    Johnson: “Yeah, we had a rough first pit stop and then we were just kind of biding our time and trying to get on a fuel strategy that could benefit us. The cars started checking up in front of me and they all moved out of the way and the No. 17 (Ricky Stenhouse) was sitting there, stopped. I remember seeing a door number and I was so thankful it was the passenger-side door and not the driver-side door because I plowed him. I really hit the car hard. I was afraid that I might have injured him. But, thankfully he’s okay and everybody is all right. It’s unfortunate for this Jimmie Johnson Foundation car and a big thank you once again, to Lowe’s for letting us run that paint scheme on the car. I guess we got them some on-camera exposure today, but not the kind we wanted.”(Team Chevy)(8-7-2016)
  • Watkins Glen Race Notes & Facts:
    � There have been 33 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Watkins Glen International, one race per season.
    � 265 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen; 162 in more than one.
    � Hendrick Motorsports and Joe Gibbs Racing are tied for the most wins at Watkins Glen in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with six each:
    Hendrick Motorsports: Jeff Gordon (four), Tim Richmond (one) and Ricky Rudd (one).
    Joe Gibbs Racing: Tony Stewart (four) and Kyle Busch (two).
    � Six different manufacturers have won in the NSCS at Watkins Glen; led by Chevrolet with 17 victories; followed by Ford with eight, Pontiac with four, Toyota with two and Buick and Mercury each have one.
    � Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory (MOV) in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Watkins Glen is the 2001 race won by Jeff Gordon over Jeff Burton with a MOV of 0.172 second.
    � There have been two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races resulting with a green-white-checkered finish at Watkins Glen (Scheduled No. of Laps/Actual No. of Laps): 2005 (90/92) and 2011 (90/92).
    � Only one of the 33 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Watkins Glen has been shortened due to weather conditions – the 1992 race – only 51 of the scheduled 90 laps were completed.
    � The 8/14/2011 race was the only NSCS race at Watkins Glen that has been postponed to another date due to weather (8/15/2011).
    (NASCAR)
  • Second Furniture Row team next year with Erik Jones UPDATE OFFICIAL: Fox Sports’ Kaitlyn Vincie reported on NASCAR Race Day Sunday morning that Furniture Row Racing is close to adding a second team next year. She says she spoke with Furniture Row Racing General Manager Joe Garone and he said the pieces were coming together but nothing is confirmed. Regarding speculation that Erik Jones would be the driver, he said Jones would be a good fit for the team but nothing is finalized. The second team would be headquartered in Denver, Colorado with the #78 team of Martin Truex, Jr.(7-31-2016)
    UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing’s alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing continues to bear fruit. An announcement planned Tuesday is expected to bring the small NASCAR team to a new level. Erik Jones could be part of the news. Reports surfaced Sunday that Jones might be getting the second Furniture Row full-time car. This season is Furniture Row’s first as a Toyota team, leaving Chevy for technical assistance from Gibbs. Week after week, Truex showed himself to be a competitor as a de facto fifth Gibbs driver. No other alliance has been so successful in Cup racing. Jones is ready for Sprint Cup. Just 20 and boyish of face, he won the Truck Series championship last season. He won his third Xfinity race of the season on Saturday at Iowa. His victory total this season might be higher had Kyle Busch not stepped down to win seven times. Sunday, a second Furniture Row car was still a rumor. So was the selection of Jones. Suarez also is an option. Another question to be answered: Will the second FRR car carry a charter or race each week without one? Expect that to be decided in the offseason.(Sporting News)
    UPDATE2: nothing was announced on Tuesday, August 2nd, no word when/if an announcement will be made.(8-2-2016)
    UPDATE3: NASCAR Truck Series champion and Xfinity Series driver Erik Jones will join Furniture Row Racing in the Sprint Cup next season. Jones, who is currently fourth in the Xfinity Series standings after winning his third race of the season on Saturday night at Iowa Speedway, is expected to drive the #77 Toyota. Jones is expected to be sponsored by 5-hour Energy, which will serve as the primary sponsor for 22 races, sources said. An official announcement is tentatively scheduled for Sunday morning at Watkins Glen International. When asked about the possibility of adding a second team on Friday at WGI, team general manager Joe Garone said, “With the support we have from Toyota and Gibbs, we feel like now would be a good time for that. It’s certainly part of it for the growth of our team.”(Motorsport)(8-5-2016)
    UPDATE4 Furniture Row Racing to Make Major Announcement on Sunday, Aug. 7 in the Watkins Glen International Media Center at 10:00am/et. Following the announcement there will be a car unveiling at the Toyota PitPass display located in the midway.
    � NASCAR.com will live stream the news conference.
    � A transcript of the news conference will be available and posted.
    (Furniture Row Racing PR)
    OFFICIAL: Furniture Row Racing announced that it will field a second team in 2017 with Erik Jones (supposedly a one-year deal) driving the #77 Toyota in the NASCAR Cup Series. 5-hour ENERGY will be the primary sponsor on Jones’ Camry for 22 races, launching the Cup Series rookie campaign for the 20-year-old driver. Jones, a native of Byron, Mich., won the 2015 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver’s championship and moved to the NASCAR XFINITY Series in 2016 where he currently has three wins piloting a Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing. “I just can’t believe this is really happening,” said Jones, who will run the full Cup schedule in 2017. “We have been talking about Cup racing for a while, but to actually make the announcement is surreal. This is every young driver’s dream, to be with a manufacturer like Toyota, an organization like Furniture Row with its successful technical alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing, and an incredible sponsor like 5-hour ENERGY who is so well known for promoting its racing program. They have given me a life-changing opportunity and my mission is to make each of them proud.”
    The colors of the Farmington Hills, Michigan-based 5-hour ENERGY will also adorn Martin Truex Jr.’s Furniture Row Racing #78 Camry for two races, including the 2017 NASCAR All-Star race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. “We take our NASCAR sponsorship very seriously as this is a major financial commitment, so we looked at several options for the 2017 season and beyond,” said Rise’ Meguiar, vice president of Living Essentials, parent company of 5-hour ENERGY. “The combination of a young incredibly talented driver, the success Toyota has had with all of its teams at Joe Gibbs Racing and Furniture Row and the way Martin has been running in the #78, we just felt this opportunity met our company’s objectives the best. Erik has earned the hype around him and we are proud to be a part of introducing him nationally with commercials, in-store displays and promotions. This is a really exciting opportunity for 5-hour ENERGY.”
    Furniture Row Racing, based in Denver, Colo., has earned a reputation as a consistent front-runner and a championship-contending organization with Truex and the #78 Camry. A Cup Series championship Chase finalist last season, Truex already has secured a 2016 Chase berth with one win, three poles and more than 1,000 laps led. “Today has been a long time coming for Furniture Row Racing,” said team owner Barney Visser. “Since we started our NASCAR journey 11 years ago it was our goal as a single-car team to reach a competitive level that would allow us to be in position to win races and compete for championships. With the success the team has shown on the track we feel now is a good time to add a second team. We are thrilled to say that we have secured what we feel is the right mix of a driver, sponsor and manufacturer to support a second-car effort.”
    Visser added, “I can say with a great deal of pride and elation that having a young, talented driver in Erik Jones, a supportive and successful company in 5-hour ENERGY, support from TRD (Toyota Racing Development, U.S.A.) and a strong technical alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing have propelled Furniture Row Racing into a new and exciting chapter as a participant in NASCAR’s top racing series.” Jones’ ascension to the NASCAR Cup Series marks the first time a Toyota developmental driver has grown from local racing through the NASCAR national ranks to the Cup Series. “Watching Erik progress through the ranks of NASCAR has already been an incredible journey,” said Ed Laukes, vice president for marketing, media, incentives, motorsports, Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. “Erik is a true talent who has proven his abilities on the track as a champion and a race winner, but also off the track as an ambassador for Toyota, his sponsors and his team. The addition of Erik to Furniture Row Racing at the NASCAR Cup level is not only an asset for the team, but an added voice within the structure and teamwork that has proven successful between JGR, FRR, TRD and Toyota. We’re all looking forward to seeing Erik behind the wheel of the 5-hour ENERGY Camry contending for Toyota victories and championships.” Jones’ hometown of Byron, Michigan is located less than an hour from 5-hour ENERGY’s headquarters in Farmington Hills.(Furniture Row Racing PR)
    AND Furniture Row Racing owner Barney Visser said the team will attempt to gain a NASCAR charter for the #77 rather than competing as an open entry (ESPN)
    Visser said Furniture Row has a one-year contract with Jones, and would like to have more. Jones, however, will remain a key cog in the future of Joe Gibbs Racing (USA Today), 5-Hour Energy will NOT move to Stewart-Haas Racing’s #14 team with Clint Bowyer.
    Image of the #77 car on the 2017 #77 Team Schemes page.(8-7-2016)
  • Bryan Clauson injured in midget race: Race car driver Bryan Clauson remains in a Lincoln, Neb., hospital today following a vicious hit in a USAC midget race Saturday night. Clauson had just taken the lead in the 39th Belleville (Kan.) Midget Nationals when he made contact with a lapped car between Turns 3 and 4 of the dirt track. The Belleville High Banks is a half-mile dirt oval 200 miles northwest of Kansas City and is one of the fastest tracks in the U.S. Clauson was aiming for his fourth victory in this event; he won last year. He had started ninth in this race.(Indianapolis Star)(8-7-2016)
  • Menard “pretty close” to announcing new deal with RCR: Paul Menard is in his sixth season campaigning in the #27 Menard’s Chevy. His sole Cup win with the organization came in the 2011 Brickyard 400. When asked about the status of his contract with RCR after finishing second in Saturday’s Zippo 200 at the Glen, he said that they are “pretty close” to an extension. “We’ll get to that in the next few weeks and make sure we let you guys know,” he added.(Motorsport)(8-7-2016)
  • Chris Buescher confident he’ll make the Chase: #34-Chris Buescher is still on the outside looking in, but probably not for long. After last Sunday’s unexpected NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory at Pocono Raceway, Buescher is still 31st in the standings, six points behind 30th-place David Ragan. In order to qualify for the Chase, Buescher must be in the top 30 after the 26th race of the season, scheduled for Sept. 10 at Richmond. Buescher is confident he can meet the challenge. “If we look at it now, we’re in good shape to be heading forward,” Buescher said on Friday at Watkins Glen International, site of Sunday’s Cheez-It 355. “Our cars have been a lot better each and every weekend. The last six or seven or eight weeks, we’ve been unloading with a lot better speed and finishing better and staying running better in the race. And when we look ahead, after this weekend we’re going to a lot of places for the second time finally, so we have a good notebook between (crew chief) Bob (Osborne) and myself. With our first year working together, we feel like we have better chemistry now and can pick up speed in the next five races leading up to the Chase.” For one thing, there are no more superspeedway races before the Chase starts. Buescher crashed out of all three restrictor-plate events this season, with his only other DNF coming at Kentucky. Henceforth, Buescher also will get better equipment on a consistent basis from Roush Fenway Racing, which farmed him out to Front Row Motorsports for his rookie year in the Sprint Cup series. “As we go forward, we have had pretty awesome support from Roush Fenway this year,” Buescher said. “A lot of the races we have been kind of half-and-half on what we’re doing, but as we look at the Chase coming up here, I think we’ll be able to try to step up our program as much as possible. I know when we landed from Utah (where Buescher attended a refresher course on road racing earlier this week), our 34 team was still in the shop at 10:30 at night to make sure we had the best piece possible for the Glen this weekend. I know the team is working as hard as they possibly can to make sure we’re running better.”(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-7-2016)
  • Boris Said back in Cup car at Watkins Glen: Boris Said will drive the #32 Genesee Beer Ford in Sunday’s Cheez-It 355 at Watkins Glen International (he qualified ). It’s his first NASCAR start of the 2016 season, but 16th career green flag at The Glen where he has often been tabbed to lead a team’s road racing effort. His best finish is third in 2005. He won the pole here in his first-ever XFINITY Series start in 1998 driving a car owned by former Cup driver Jimmy Spencer. Twice he finished fourth including last year for Joe Gibbs Racing. “It’s crazy for me because I still love driving, but I’m almost 54,” Said said. “I keep thinking I’m going to retire, but …” he said smiling and putting his hands up. “I have no hope to win, but it’s still fun to drive. It’s still better than watching it on TV and this is one of my favorite places to come, the track, the people, Seneca Lodge, the whole thing.” After his drive at Watkins Glen, Said is set for some sports car racing in Europe and will start the Monterey Motorsports Reunion, a historic car race driving one of his former Corvette racer. And, he said, there’s a chance he may make an XFINITY Series start. Said also owns BMW and Volkswagon dealerships in his home state of California and his K1 Speed indoor go-kart track franchise recently opened its 34th facility.(in part from NASCAR.com)(8-7-2016)
  • IndyCar’s Newgarden to attend Cup race at Watkins Glen: Verizon IndyCar Series driver Josef Newgarden is planning to attend Sunday’s Cheez-It 355 at The Glen to promote IndyCar’s return to Watkins Glen International next month. Watkins Glen, which hosted the IndyCar Series from 2005 to 2010, was added to the series’ schedule in May after the Grand Prix of Boston was canceled. The IndyCar Grand Prix at The Glen is scheduled for Sept. 2-4. It is one of four remaining races this season for the series, which will have one race left after stopping at Watkins Glen. Newgarden’s schedule will include meeting with the media, visiting hospitality locations and spending time with the #48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet of Jimmie Johnson.(Elmiria Star Gazette)(8-7-2016)
  • Dibenedetto wins charity event: It has become a tradition for the Outlaw Speedway dirt oval in Dundee, NY to host a match race featuring some of the drivers competing in this weekend’s Cheez-It 355 at The Glen. This year’s ninth annual Michael McDowell MRO Night to benefit Motor Racing Outreach was won by Matt Dibenedetto. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racer bested Xfinity Series driver and NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour champion Ryan Preece in the 12-lap race on the four-tenths of a mile clay oval. Kevin White, part of Dibenedetto’s #83 BK Racing team, was third, followed by Fox Sports broadcaster and veteran NASCAR/dirt track racer Kenny Wallace. JJ Yeley, the 2010 winner of the event, was fifth. McDowell, the 2011 and 2013 winner, was sixth in the nine-car field. A silent auction for MRO was also held that offered many driver-autographed items and a chance to bid on Brad Keselowski’s winner’s trophy from the 2014 Kobalt 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.(Elmiria Star Gazette)(8-7-2016)
  • Smithfield Donates More Than 25,000 Pounds of Protein to the Food Bank: Smithfield’s Helping Hungry Homes program made the 21st stop on its 2016 nationwide hunger-relief tour Friday morning to donate more than 25,000 pounds of protein to the Food Bank of the Southern Tier. The donation will provide more than 100,000 servings and help the food bank continue to provide meals to the greater Watkins Glen area, where nearly 12% of individuals are food insecure. Smithfield partnered with Tops Friendly Markets and Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) to present the donation during an event on Friday, August 5 at Tops, located at 504 1/2 Franklin Street, Watkins Glen, NY. Speakers discussed the importance of donations like these in Watkins Glen and surrounding communities, where one in five children suffers from hunger.(RPM)(8-7-2016)
  • Pit stops at The Glen are … different: The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series are taking their talents to the Watkins Glen road course this week. With that comes the challenge of pitting, as The Glen is the only place in the Sprint Cup Series where stops are done backward. What makes this so difficult? The first thing is just simply breaking routines. Pit crews train hard year-round, and all their focus is on gaining one-tenth of a second. Now you take a random week during the year and throw in backward stop and things get interesting. Teams usually will start practicing for Watkins Glen either the week of the race, or sometimes a week earlier. It’s usually a two- or three-stop event, so teams don’t spend a ton of prep time on it. Getting used to the choreography of the stops is difficult, too. Everything is opposite of the usual flow. Getting footwork to match up can be a challenge. What are usually easy left- and right-side wedge adjustments now become more difficult. Gasmen also have a different angle to plug their cans into. It’s not uncommon to see lots of gas being spilled at a track where fuel mileage is big. Perhaps the biggest challenge for crewmen is the penalty they face for jumping early. With the new NASCAR technology, you can’t cheat the jump line. When your routine is changed, so is your timing. Expect to see a few guys leave early because their timing is off. With the anxiety of change comes the anxiety of getting across the car quicker, and that’s when leaving early happens.(NASCAR/PitTalks.com)(8-7-2016)
  • Watkins Glen Sprint Cup Series Pre-Race Schedule for Sunday, August 7: (eastern time)
    2:00pm: Driver Introductions
    2:28pm: Canadian National Anthem: Amy Rivard, Singer/Songwriter
    2:30pm: Presentation of Colors: U.S. Marines Color Guard (on stage), New York State Troopers (Turn 1), Alfred State ROTC (Turn 2), Chemung-Schuyler Cadet Squadron (Esses)
    2:30pm: Invocation by: Reverend David Fife, Bentley Creek Wesleyan Church
    2:31pm: National Anthem by J.W. Cortes
    2:32pm: Flyover by C-130 Hercules, 914th Airlift Wing, Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station
    2:38pm: Command to Start Engines by John Persons, President/COO, Top’s Markets and Johnny Persons
    2:49pm: Start of the Cheez-It 355
    eastern time (NASCAR.com)
  • Cope comments on explosion UPDATE: #70-Derrike Cope had no answers for what caused his car to explode Saturday during the Zippo 200 at The Glen. Cope said he lost his brake pedal entering turn 1 and was limping around the track through the inner loop when something seemingly detonated under the hood of his #70 Chevrolet. “In 35 years of racing, I don’t think I’ve ever seen that transpire before,” the 1990 Daytona 500 winner told NBC Sports’ Parker Kligerman after exiting the Watkins Glen International care center without being injured. “We were just trying to survive and get through this (race). I lost the brake pedal going into turn 1, and I knew something happened to a piston or whatever so I just went easy down there and started coming to a stop, and the whole thing just blew the hood off. I don’t know really what it was. The shocks were all intact and the tires were up, so I don’t know what exploded.” NASCAR impounded the car for further study of the incident.(NBC Sports)(8-6-2016)
    UPDATE: Elton Sawyer, NASCAR Vice President of Officiating and Technical Inspection, said Sunday morning that the odd explosion involving Derrike Cope’s car Saturday at Watkins Glen International was a result of excessive brake heat with little place to escape forcing a dramatic tire failure. NASCAR competition officials impounded the car after the race, with Sawyer — who was named to his post July 12 — and XFINITY Series director Wayne Auton investigating the issue alongside Goodyear tire engineers in the Watkins Glen garage. Sawyer said that Cope’s #70 had made contact with another car one or two laps before the incident, causing a vibration and brake issue on his car’s right-front corner. When his brake pedal started to lose its effect, Cope indicated he was looking for a place to pull off the course. The contact broke the brake caliper where it attached to the spindle, Sawyer said, creating excessive heat to melt the bead on the right-front tire’s inner sidewall. “As soon as the vehicle comes to a stop, you’ve got all that radiant heat and it’s just sitting there at the soft point of the sidewall, which is where it basically explodes,” Sawyer said. Sawyer said that NASCAR did not take the car back to its Research & Development Center in North Carolina, releasing the car to the team after at-track investigation and adding that competition officials would review the issue further. “We’ll look into it as we always do,” Sawyer said. “We’ll get back and get with the guys at the R&D; Center and say, ‘here’s what happened.’ We’ve got plenty of photographs and documentation, so we’ll look into it. But I think it’s when you’re at a high-speed place where there’s high braking, like a Martinsville, we see beads all the time. The situation here was when the vehicle came to a stop, there’s no air moving, so it’s probably the biggest issue.”(NASCAR.com)(8-7-2016)
  • Watkins Glen International announces second consecutive reserved grandstand sell-out:Watkins Glen International is proud to announce that reserved grandstand tickets for today’s Cheez-It 355 at The Glen NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race have sold out for the second consecutive year. “We’re excited to announce our second consecutive grandstand sell out,” said WGI President Michael Printup. “This is a great testament to the passion and dedication our fans have for Watkins Glen International. We’re looking forward to a great race and delivering an incredible experience that keeps our fans coming back year after year.” With the announcement of its second grandstand sell-out, Watkins Glen International also announced that it is completing plans for a new viewing deck outside the Esses in 2017. This will create a new viewing experience for fans with more details to be released in coming weeks.(WGI)(8-7-2016)


    News from August 6, 2016


     

  • Race Coverage of the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is scheduled for Sunday, August 7, 2016.
    Social Media: JAYSKI.com Twitter
    Television (TV)USA Network at 2:30 pm/et; Pre-Race show at 2:00 pm/et; green flag approx. 2:50pm/et
    RadioMotor Racing Network (MRN) and Sirius XM Satellite NASCAR Radio 90
    Scheduled Race Re-Air: none
  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International have been made.
    With the field downsized to 40 cars, three pit stalls (12,24,43) have been eliminated and are not in play and don’t count towards driving through more than three pit boxes.
    Pole sitter #19-Edwards chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #42-Larson took pit stall 38, the first pit stall with an opening in front of it.
    #14-Stewart, who starts 3rd took the 13th pit stall, with an opening ahead of it due to a closed pit stall.
    The final pit stall was taken by #1-McMurray, who starts 10th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on Jayski.com’s Pit Stall Selection chart.
  • Edwards wins pole at Watkins Glen: #19-Carl Edwards won the pole for the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International with speed of 126.562mph for his 4th pole of 2016, 2nd at Watkins Glen, 3rd road course pole (he also won the pole at Sonoma in June) and 20th of his career (tied with Benny Parsons and Neil Bonnett for 27th most). Edwards has won from the pole three times in 19 previous tries.
    #42-Larson starts 2nd followed by #14-Stewart, #20-Kenseth, #18-Busch, #11-Hamlin, #22-Logano, #31-Newman, #47-Allmendinger, #1-McMurray, #95-McDowell and #2-Keselowski.
    Jeff Gordon, subbing for #88-Dale Earnhardt, Jr., will start 21st.
    Last weeks race winner, #34-Buescher will start 25th.
    #22-Logano paced the opening round of qualifying at 126.216mph and starts 7th.
    Notes: #38-Cassill had no speed as his car encountered fuel pressure problems and didn’t get on the track, start 40th.
    Drivers who will miss the race: None as 40 drivers are entered for 40 starting spots
    See round-by-round qualifying results on the Watkins Glen qualifying results page (pdf) and the complete starting lineup on the Watkins Glen Starting Lineup page (pdf).(8-6-2016)
  • Watkins Glen International – Qualifying Fast Facts:
    #19-Carl Edwards won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 31st Annual Cheez-It 355 at The Glen with a lap of 69.689 seconds, 126.562 mph.
    This is his 20th pole in 431 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his fourth pole and 17th top-10 start in 2016.
    This is his second pole in 12 races at Watkins Glen International.
    #42-Kyle Larson (second) posted his fifth top-10 start of 2016 and his second in three races at Watkins Glen International.
    #14-Tony Stewart (third) posted his 14th top-10 start at Watkins Glen International. It is his sixth in 14 races this season.
    #24-Chase Elliott (16th) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(8-6-2016)
  • First Round of Qualifying for the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is over, after 25 scheduled minutes.
    #22-Logano 126.216
    #19-Edwards 125.933
    #2-Keselowski 125.757
    #47-Allmendinger 125.709
    #1-McMurray 125.691
    the rest of the top 12: 20 95 42 11 18 31 14;
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to round 2 (13-40): 48 78 4 24 41 3 21 13 88 98 5 16 34 23 44 15 7 17 10 6 27 43 83 55 32 46 30 38
    Notes: #38-Cassill had no speed as his car encountered fuel pressure problems and didn’t get on the track.
    Drivers who will miss the race: None as 40 drivers are entered for 40 starting spots
    (8-6-2016)
  • Watkins Glen Pole Notes & Facts:
    � Buck Baker won the inaugural Coors Light pole at Watkins Glen in 1957 with a speed of 87.071 mph. Driver/owner Buck Baker went on to win the inaugural race from the pole.
    � 20 drivers have Coors Light poles at Watkins Glen, led by NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt, Mark Martin and Jeff Gordon with three each.
    � Mark Martin is the only NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver to post consecutive Coors Light poles at Watkins Glen (three) – 1993, 1994, and 1995.
    � Tony Stewart leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average starting position at Watkins Glen with a 6.067 – Stewart has made 15 starts at WGI.
    � Nine of the 33 (27.2%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Watkins Glen have been won from the Coors Light pole; the most recent was Kyle Busch in 2008.
    � The Coors Light pole position is the most proficient starting position in the field, producing more winners (nine) than any other starting position at Watkins Glen.
    � 11 of the 33 (33.3%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Watkins Glen have been won from the front row: nine from the pole and two from second-place.
    � 21 of the 33 (63.6%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Watkins Glen have been won from a top-five starting position.
    � 23 of the 33 (69.6%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Watkins Glen have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    � None of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Watkins Glen have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.
    � The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Watkins Glen is 18th, by Steve Park in 2000.
    � Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Watkins Glen six times: 1965, 2000, 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008.
    (NASCAR)
  • Earnhardt Jr. to meet with the media at Watkins Glen UPDATE2: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Chevy, is scheduled to meet with the members of the media on Friday, Aug. 5, at 12:00pm/et in the Watkins Glen International media center. Earnhardt Jr. has missed the last three races, suffering from a concussion.(HMS)
    UPDATE: Dale Earnhardt Jr. talked to the media at Watkins Glen to answer questions about his situation, missing races and getting back in the car. He said it is great to be back at the track and see everybody and is super nervous coming back but haven’t been to the track and miss my team. DaleJr says his intentions are to get cleared and get back in the car, but no set timeline yet. He would like to get in a racecar once cleared from concussion symptoms, maybe a late model or whatnot, and run for a day, before he deals with a race weekeend. He is surprised he has missed this many races. Earnhardt says he is not read to quit or stop racing but he will not get back in a car until his doctors clear him. He plans to stay thru practices visit his team and head back home today.
    See the full Q&A; transcript on the #88 Team News and Links page.(8-5-2016)
    UPDATE2: Dale Earnhardt Jr. made it clear on Friday. He doesn’t want to talk about the “R” word, as in retirement. Earnhardt’s recent struggle with concussion-like symptoms, a malady that will cause him to miss at least five NASCAR Sprint Cup races this season, has fueled speculation that concern over health issues might persuade him to exit the #88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy permanently. But Earnhardt had an emphatic reply when that issue was raised in a question-and-answer session with reporters on Friday at Watkins Glen International, host venue for Sunday’s Cheez-It 355. “I have every intention of honoring my current contract (which runs through 2017),” Earnhardt said. “I sat with (team owner) Rick (Hendrick) before this happened a couple of months ago to talk about an extension. That’s the direction that we are going. As soon as I can get healthy and get confident in how I feel and feel like I can drive a car and be great driving it, then I want to drive. I want to race. I miss the competition. I miss being here. I miss the people and, as Rick likes to say, ‘We’ve got unfinished business.’ I’m not ready to stop racing. I’m not ready to quit. It’s a slower process, I wish it wasn’t. I don’t know how long it’s going to take.”
    Until Earnhardt receives medical clearance, he won’t be allowed to race, and he’s working diligently with his doctors to suppress the symptoms that forced him out of the car for the mid-July Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire and will keep him on the sidelines at least through the Aug. 20 event at Bristol Motor Speedway. “I’m not going to go in the car until the doctors clear me,” Earnhardt said. “The doctors won’t let me race. This is not my decision, but it’s the right decision, and I trust what my doctors are telling me. When they say I’m good to go, I believe them. If they say I’m healthy and I can race, I’m going to race.”
    Doctors concluded that the onset of Earnhardt’s concussion-like symptoms, which involve issues with gaze stability, dizziness and balance, began with a wreck at Michigan in mid-June, though Earnhardt said the intensification of the symptoms was gradual. After he raced at Kentucky Speedway on July 9, Earnhardt sought medical attention, and what he thought might be a sinus infection instead resulted in the diagnosis that forced him out of the car. Earnhardt receives medical evaluations every two to three weeks and will continue to do so until he is symptom-free. In the meantime, doctors are encouraging him to participate in higher-stress public situations-such as a press conference-to exacerbate the symptoms with an eye toward getting them under control.
    “That’s just part of the process,” Earnhardt said. “You don’t want to go anywhere where you’re going to feel worse. And this situation, my doctor tells me, is good therapy to go somewhere that makes you feel worse. Go in there and get exposure and then get out and go somewhere where you can kind of get calmed back down and then repeat the process. And so, I’ve been going and eating and having lunch with my family. I go to (sister) Kelley’s house and get in the living room with her kids; boy that drives up the symptoms pretty good. But, it’s been great to spend time with them.” But it’s all with one thing in mind.
    “I just want to get better,” Earnhardt said. “Our intentions are to get cleared and get back to racing. We are just taking it one evaluation at a time. It’s frustrating to have to do it that way, but that’s the process, and we hope and expect that, when we go back for the next evaluation, we are symptom-free and can start to see a timeline develop.”(NASCAR Wire Service), see the full Q&A; transcript on the #88 Team News and Links page.(8-6-2016)
  • Dustless Blasting to Sponsor DiBenedetto at Watkins Glen: BK Racing announced that Dustless Blasting will sponsor #83-Matt DiBenedetto for the upcoming Cheez-It 355 at Watkins Glen International. Dustless Blasting’s visit to Watkins Glen is a trip down memory lane for owner Benny LeCompte. “Dustless Blasting got an introduction to NASCAR three years ago at Watkins Glen, as a first time sponsor. That impression, complete with butterflies, was a lasting one. It was such an awesome experience that we have proudly continued to sponsor the #83 car and partner with BK Racing. We eagerly anticipate each race, and look forward to watching Matt DiBenedetto in action.” Dustless Blasting has revolutionized the surface preparation industry. With the ability to strip all paint, primer, rust and body filler from the average car in only two hours without warping, Dustless Blasting is quickly becoming the new gold standard in surface preparation. Dustless Blasting’s anti-spark, anti-dust, and anti-static properties have also made it extremely useful in the refinery, oilfield, mining and other industries. “As BK Racing grows, our relationship with Dustless Blasting is also growing,” said BK Racing team owner Ron Devine. “Dustless Blasting has been a wonderful sponsor and we look forward to our continued success together. Matt DiBenedetto will drive the #83 Toyota and proudly represent Dustless Blasting and their industry leading products in Watkins Glen this weekend.”(BK Racing), see images of car on the #83 Team Schemes page (8-6-2016)
  • Hendrick helps Summer Camp Fund reach its goal: NASCAR team owner Rick Hendrick has donated $34,000 to The Charlotte Observer’s Summer Camp Fund, the amount needed to help the fund reach its goal to give more children a chance to go to camp next year. Hendrick, last year’s honorary chairman of the annual fundraising drive, said he came to realize how important it is to give children from low-income families the experience and opportunities that summer camp offers. “Over the last few years, our family has learned so much about issues impacting our young people,” Hendrick said in a statement. “The success of the Summer Camp Fund really highlights the generosity and compassion of our community, and we’ve been proud to join with so many of our neighbors in supporting it.” As of Friday, the Summer Camp Fund received donations totaling more than $190,000, which enables the non-profit to qualify for an additional $25,000 grant from the Leon Levine Foundation.(Charlotte Observer)(8-6-2016)
  • ECR Technologies Now a Division of RCR Enterprises: ECR Technologies (ECR), the high-performance research, development and engine production company located on the Richard Childress Racing (RCR) campus in Welcome, NC, is now a wholly owned division of RCR Enterprises, LLC. With the strong brand equity that ECR has built in worldwide motorsports since 2007, the company will continue to use the name ECR Engines. The state-of-the-art company has grown over the past nine years to provide engines for NASCAR teams such as RCR, Germain Racing, JTG Daugherty Racing, Circle Sport – Leavine Family Racing, and others in the Sprint Cup, XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series. Beyond NASCAR, ECR also produces engines for the Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototypes competing in the 2016 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards, SCCA, dirt and asphalt short track, and sprint car racing.
    ECR was formed in 2007 when Richard Childress Racing and Dale Earnhardt, Inc. combined their engine development and production efforts. The subsidiary of RCR Enterprises has earned more than 250 victories, including two Daytona 500s, three Brickyard 400 championships, and championships in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, Camping World Truck Series, and ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards. ECR Engines won the 2014 and 2015 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with the Chevrolet Corvette Daytona Prototype. With a focus on leading-edge development and world-class engine production, ECR Engines enjoys technical partnerships with market leaders in innovation, including Chevrolet, WIX Filters, Lucas Oil, Zeiss, PTC, Cometic Gasket, Bosch, Clevite, ARP, Smith Brothers, Spring Technologies, Total Seal and others.(RCR)(8-6-2016)
  • David Stremme’s wife crowned Mrs. United States for 2016: Ashley Stremme, co-host of Motor Racing Network’s “Slingin’ Dirt” and the wife of former Sprint Cup driver David Stremme, has been crowned Mrs. United States for 2016. The annual competition, acknowledged to be the premier pageant for married women in America, culminated with Thursday’s finals at the Palms Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. “I am in disbelief,” Stremme said. “You wonder if you’re ever worthy of something like this. It’s a testament that dreams can come true.” Stremme, who also co-hosts MRN’s “Winged Nation,” began her pageant preparation in April of this year, which led to her being crowned Mrs. North Carolina – qualifying her for this week’s event in Las Vegas. “This has been an incredible year for us, with David and me starting our new business,” Stremme said, “and now with my work at MRN. It has all not quite sunk in yet.” The Stremmes recently opened a motor sports business that specializes in building chassis for dirt racing, which is one of their passions.(MRN)(8-6-2016)
  • Pocono TV Ratings: Postponed NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Pocono earned 1.5 million viewers on NBCSN Monday afternoon, slightly ahead of the season’s first Pocono race – which was also postponed to Monday (1.4M). Ratings were not immediately available. Rainout coverage on Sunday delivered a 1.1 final rating and 1.7 million viewers.(Sports Media Watch), see race-by-race TV Ratings for 2016 and a comparison chart on the 2016 TV Ratings page.(8-6-2016)
  • Joey Logano wins XFINITY race at Watkins Glen: #12-Joey Logano won the Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen International. It is his 26th XFINITY Series win and 1st of the year. It is also Team Penske’s first XFINITY win of the year. Logano started from the pole and lead 67 of the 82 laps.
    #2-Paul Menard finished second, followed by #42-Kyle Larson, #19-Daniel Suarez, #60-Trevor Bayne, #1-Elliott Sadler, #7-Justin Allgaier, #8-Brendan Gaughan, #16-Ryan Reed, and #48-Brennan Poole.
    There were 6 cautions for 18 laps and 8 lead changes among 5 leaders. The race was red flagged once, for 22 minutes on lap 19, for track cleanup following an accident.
    The average speed was 87.496mph.
    Complete results are on the Watkins Glen race results page (pdf).
    (8-6-2016)
  • Watkins Glen XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Joey Logano(i) won the 22nd Annual Zippo 200 at The Glen, his 26th victory in 156 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first victory and ninth top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his second victory and sixth top-10 finish in nine races at Watkins Glen International.
    Paul Menard(i) (second) posted his seventh top-10 finish in ten races at Watkins Glen International. It is his fifth top-10 finish in 2016.
    Kyle Larson(i) (third) posted his first top-10 finish in four races at Watkins Glen International.
    Brennan Poole (10th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 11 points over Daniel Suarez.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-6-2016)
  • XFINITY Driver standings following Watkins Glen:
    [12 drivers qualify for the XFINITY Series Chase. 6 more races until the Chase cutoff.]
    1) #1-Elliott Sadler [1 win], 668
    2) #19-Daniel Suarez [1 win], 657, -11
    3) #3-Ty Dillon, 629, -39
    4) #20-Erik Jones [3 wins], 613, -55
    5) #7-Justin Allgaier, 610, -58
    6) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 598, -70
    7) #48-Brennan Poole, 587, -81
    8) #33-Brandon Jones, 573, -95
    9) #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., 512, -156
    10) #16-Ryan Reed, 496, -172
    11) #39-Ryan Sieg, 464, -204
    12) #11-Blake Koch, 437, -231
    Currently outside the Chase:
    13) #4-Ross Chastain, 435, -233, 2 pts out of 12th
    14) #28-Dakoda Armstrong, 428, -240, -9
    15) #51-Jeremy Clements, 423, -245, -14
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(8-6-2016)
  • Bowyer, Bubba Rock Eighth Annual Parade of Power: A star-studded lineup of top driver appearances, smoke-billowing show car exhibitions and high-flying motocross demonstrations highlighted a thrilling Parade of Power on Wednesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, as the speedway kicked off its Fall Season of Speed with appearances featuring NASCAR stars Clint Bowyer and Bubba Wallace as well as motocross sensation Phil Nicoletti, among others. More than two dozen high-powered show cars – including two NASCAR stock cars, a ground-pounding NASCAR Modified, an MXGP dirt bike, an NHRA Pro Mod, two dirt late models, a trophy truck, a Legend Car, motorized lawnmowers and a monster truck – paraded two miles from Concord Mills down Bruton Smith Boulevard in front of hundreds of fans to showcase the diverse assortment of machines coming this fall. Fans interested in attending any of the fall events, including the Monster Energy MXGP of the Americas on Sept. 2-3, the NHRA Carolina Nationals Sept. 16-18, the Bank of America 500 on Oct. 8 and the Bad Boy World of Outlaws World Finals Oct. 27-29, can call the speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS (3267) or visit online at charlottemotorspeedway.com.(CMS)(8-6-2016)


    News from August 5, 2016


     

  • Coverage of Qualifying for the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is scheduled for Saturday, August 6, 2016 at 12:15pm/et.
    Television (TV): CNBC, 12:00pm/et
    Radio: Live online at Motor Racing Network (MRN)
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: none
  • Road Course Qualifying Format: Qualifying for the road courses consist of two elimination rounds to determine the starting grid. The first elimination round will last 25 minutes and include all cars, setting starting spots 13-40. Then there will be a ten-minute break. The 12 cars that post the fastest single lap will advance to the final round. The final qualifying round will last 10 minutes, include all cars and the fastest single lap time will determine positions 1 through 12. The fastest driver in the final round will earn the pole position for the race.
  • Qualifying Order for the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is posted. 40 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first driver to be lined up on pit road will be #88-Gordon.
    The final driver lined up on pit road will be #5-Kahne.
    The order is set by a random draw, how cars park on pit road before they qualify, held about an hour before the first practice.
    After the first round, the cars line up by speed.
    See the full qualifying order on Jayski.com’s Watkins Glen Qualifying Order Page (pdf).
  • Happy Hour (final) Practice for the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #47-Allmendinger 127.551
    #78-Truex Jr. 127.481
    #17-Stenhouse Jr. 127.416
    #18-Busch 127.381
    #20-Kenseth 127.280
    slowest: #30-Wise 120.709 & #55-Kennedy 121.865
    notes: #42-Larson spun off turn 1, but no damage and drove on.
    #23-Ragan spun off track and smacked the wall, doing some damage to the drivers side of the car.
    #47-Allmendinger’s car started smoking late in the session, ended up being a loose oil line.
    Qualifying is Saturday, August 6th at 12:15pm/et, will air live in CNBC and via radio at MRN and SiriusXM.
    See fastest speeds, laps run, best 10 consecutive lap ave on Jayski.com’s Watkins Glen Happy Hour Practice Speeds page (pdf) (8-5-2016)
  • First Practice for the Cheez-It 355 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #78-Truex Jr. 126.883
    #11-Hamlin 126.343
    #13-Mears 125.896
    #19-Edwards 125.654
    #18-Busch 125.643
    slowest: #30-Wise 119.883 & #46-Annett 120.300
    notes: #10-Patrick had some brake issues early just before the inner loop, but was able to get the car to the garage and repaired. #15-Bowyer spun off track, but no damage. Happy Hour (final) practice is scheduled for 3:00pm/et, also on NBCSN. Qualifying is Saturday, August 6th at 12:15pm/et, will air live in CNBC and via radio at MRN and SiriusXM.
    See fastest speeds, laps run, best 10 consecutive lap ave on Jayski.com’s Watkins Glen Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf) (8-5-2016)
  • Second Furniture Row team next year with Erik Jones UPDATE3: Fox Sports’ Kaitlyn Vincie reported on NASCAR Race Day Sunday morning that Furniture Row Racing is close to adding a second team next year. She says she spoke with Furniture Row Racing General Manager Joe Garone and he said the pieces were coming together but nothing is confirmed. Regarding speculation that Erik Jones would be the driver, he said Jones would be a good fit for the team but nothing is finalized. The second team would be headquartered in Denver, Colorado with the #78 team of Martin Truex, Jr.(7-31-2016)
    UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing’s alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing continues to bear fruit. An announcement planned Tuesday is expected to bring the small NASCAR team to a new level. Erik Jones could be part of the news. Reports surfaced Sunday that Jones might be getting the second Furniture Row full-time car. This season is Furniture Row’s first as a Toyota team, leaving Chevy for technical assistance from Gibbs. Week after week, Truex showed himself to be a competitor as a de facto fifth Gibbs driver. No other alliance has been so successful in Cup racing. Jones is ready for Sprint Cup. Just 20 and boyish of face, he won the Truck Series championship last season. He won his third Xfinity race of the season on Saturday at Iowa. His victory total this season might be higher had Kyle Busch not stepped down to win seven times. Sunday, a second Furniture Row car was still a rumor. So was the selection of Jones. Suarez also is an option. Another question to be answered: Will the second FRR car carry a charter or race each week without one? Expect that to be decided in the offseason.(Sporting News)
    UPDATE2: nothing was announced on Tuesday, August 2nd, no word when/if an announcement will be made.(8-2-2016)
    UPDATE3: NASCAR Truck Series champion and Xfinity Series driver Erik Jones will join Furniture Row Racing in the Sprint Cup next season. Jones, who is currently fourth in the Xfinity Series standings after winning his third race of the season on Saturday night at Iowa Speedway, is expected to drive the #77 Toyota. Jones is expected to be sponsored by 5-hour Energy, which will serve as the primary sponsor for 22 races, sources said. An official announcement is tentatively scheduled for Sunday morning at Watkins Glen International. When asked about the possibility of adding a second team on Friday at WGI, team general manager Joe Garone said, “With the support we have from Toyota and Gibbs, we feel like now would be a good time for that. It’s certainly part of it for the growth of our team.”(Motorsport)(8-5-2016)
  • Dale Earnhardt Jr. Watkins Glen Press Conference Transcript: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., met with members of the media at Watkins Glen International to discuss his health, a potential timeline of his return to racing and many other topics. Full Transcript:
    ON BEING BACK AT THE TRACK: 
    Earnhardt Jr.: “It is great to be back and seeing everybody. I’m super nervous coming back. Hadn’t been to the track. I miss my team and my teammates. Amy (Reimann, fianc�) is gone on a trip for the weekend, so I was at the house by myself and was just looking for some things to do. Figured coming to the track wasn’t a bad idea. Get to hang out with my guys a little bit. It just felt so weird not being there, so here we are.”
    Q) IS IT POSSIBLE YOUR DOCTORS WON’T BE ABLE TO GIVE YOU CLEAR DIRECTIVES SO THAT YOU WILL HAVE A BIG DECISION TO MAKE ON YOUR OWN FOR YOUR LONG TERM HEALTH? 
    Earnhardt Jr.: “I think my doctors have a good understanding of my history and what I have been through and with their own personal knowledge that they have throughout their careers to give me a clear understanding of when I will be ready to go back and get into a race car. Our intentions are to get cleared and get back to racing. We are just taking it one evaluation at a time. It is frustrating to have to do it that way, but that is the process, and we hope and expect that when we go back for the next evaluation that we are symptom free and can start to see a timeline develop. Until then, we are just taking it one evaluation at a time. Those are typically every two to three to four weeks.”
    Q) YOUR FANS WANT TO KNOW IF THIS HAS BEEN TOUGH EMOTIONALLY ON YOU BECAUSE YOU HAVE SEEMED SO STRONG THROUGH THIS:
    Earnhardt Jr.: “I just want to get better. You put everything… nothing else is really a priority except for just getting the symptoms to clear up and get back to feeling like yourself. That is all that I am thinking about. The process isn’t as fast as you would like it to be. I talk to my doctor every other day, sometimes for an hour or two about the psychological side of it because it can become very frustrating and obviously being a race car driver, we don’t have a lot of patience to begin with. This is a challenge. But we’ve got some great doctors, and I really believe and trust what they are telling me. I am confident and positive that they tell me without question that we are going to get back to normal. I just have to do what they tell me. There are a lot of activities every day. There is about two to three hours’ worth of physical and mental therapy that I do each day. Not a lot of fun. Probably some of it, just trying to describe it, it pretty mundane. But they really stress your symptoms, and that is what they want. They want you to do things that really push your mind, and bring out the symptoms. So, in the last evaluation, we really ramped up the therapy to make it a little more strenuous. We will continue to work. I will work every day and listen to my doctors and hopefully continue to see progress.”
    Q) SINCE THIS PROCESS FIRST STARTED, HAVE YOU PERSONALLY CONSIDERED WHETHER YOU SHOULD CONSIDER RACING, OR HAVE THAT DISCUSSION BETWEEN YOU AND AMY, OR EVEN WITH JUST YOURSELF?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “No. My doctor thinks that to get through the therapy and to get through the symptoms you don’t need to be adding stress to your life. The stress will slow down the process. So, going into those kinds of conversations aren’t even necessary at this particular point. The point right now is just to get healthy. Just to get right. I’m not thinking about the what-ifs. I’m just listening to my doctors. We went into this with the intentions of getting back in the car when we get cleared. I think that is a possibility and so do my doctors. So I am excited about that. Whenever it happens; it happens. It is frustrating that we’ve had to miss this many races. When we first went into the doctor’s office, we never anticipated being out this long. Unfortunately it is a slower process. There are no guidelines or rule book, or consistent history on how long this stuff really takes to clear up. So, we just have to be patient. My doctors feel great about the opportunity that I will not only be healthy again, but they can actually make my brain stronger to be able to withstand these common events. The event that I had at Michigan which they have tied this concussion to I shouldn’t have had a concussion from. I should be able to get through events like that without having any issues. So, they are not only working to get me healed up, but are working to make it to where I can compete and go through events like that without any concern.”
    Q) ON GETTING CORRECT INFORMATION ABOUT HIS CONDITION TO EVERYONE:
    Earnhardt Jr.: “I think the podcast was just a great outlet for us to give updates. People are wondering; people are curious so that was a great avenue for us. It is effective. I don’t mind being honest about what is going on and I think that is maybe helped some people to when they are going through the same situation. The one thing I worry the most about and I think I said on the podcast is that I don’t like people to make assumptions on where I am at and how I am doing and what I am up to. So it is best for my peace-of-mind to give me peace of mind and to bring down any stress and anxiety through the process is to just open up and be honest about what is going on and how we are doing. That is what we’ve done. It is just a coincidence and a fortunate situation to have that avenue. So we will probably continue to use that.”
    Q) CAN THEY NOT SET A TIMELINE UNTIL YOU ARE SYMPTOM FREE?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “Yes, because you don’t when they are going to quit. You just don’t know when the symptoms will stop. Every day I am doing these exercises to sort of retrain the brain to fix the issues that I have with the balance and to gain stability. It will fix itself when it decides to. There is no common history that will tell you that ‘man, this is going to last a month’, or this is going to last…because I’ve had situations that…and I’ve talked to other people with this history that didn’t last this long. That is why it is frustrating. My past history didn’t take this long and cleared up… and you could see the progress, feel the progress every day. It is a little bit different. The symptoms I am having this time are different, but not uncommon. So my doctor is very positive and I feed off of that. I talk to him every other day like I said for him to keep reinforcing that positive energy so I can get in there and believe in the rehabilitation and the work I’m doing because it is really tough for me to get in there and do it. I just don’t want to do it, but I know I have to. I just don’t know when this is going to stop; and when things are going to fix themselves. That’s why it has to be from one evaluation to the next. That is the best I can do for everybody.”
    Q) IS IT YOUR EXPECTATION TO BE BACK IN THE CAR AS SOON AS YOU ARE SYMPTOM FREE?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “I don’t know what the doctor would choose there. Whether you could go symptom free and go immediately back in the car. Or if they would maybe want you to be symptom free for a week or two weeks. I don’t know what he will do. We haven’t really talked about that. I personally would like to get in a race car and drive it at a closed course somewhere. Whether that is one of my late models, or if NASCAR would lift the restrictions on the testing policy to go to Gresham or someplace I want to get in the car and run for a day. I think I should do that. That would be the smartest thing to do before actually trying to accomplish an entire race weekend.”
    Q) CAN YOU TALK ABOUT HOW FRUSTRATING THE ANXIETY-SIDE OF THIS HAS BEEN? ALSO, HOW HAS THE SUPPORT OF YOUR FANS HELPED YOU?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “I’d love to speak on the support. It’s been awesome. All the NASCAR fans are supportive of all the drivers when they find themselves in situations that are challenging. It’s been no different. That’s helped me a lot and gave me a lot of motivation to get back and get back in the car. Even hearing from not only the fans, but also the other drivers and my peers is such a positive motivation. The more of that I see, the better. I think it helps me keep going and keep working hard and take my therapy seriously. As far as anxiety, with 2012 it was just about resting and not doing anything that would drive the symptoms and really letting your mind and your head rest to heal. For whatever reason, my doctor wants to push me into situations that drive the symptoms and that’s basically going somewhere that I’m not familiar with, or being in busy places. Going out to eat or going to lunch or coming here, my doctor calls that ‘exposure’. This is probably the worst situation (laughs) as far as making my symptoms go haywire, but that’s what he wants. He wants me to do anything whether it’s going places and pushing myself to get into areas that give me anxiety and drive the symptoms. All the rehab drives the symptoms. They want me to push the symptoms so my body gets used to them and they become suppressed and then it’s no longer an issue.
    I kind of had the same thing with the old concussion. I could go places. The anxiety was bad and it would drive up the symptoms, too. That’s just part of the process. That’s a common occurrence with situations like this. You don’t want to go anywhere where you’re going to feel worse. And this situation, my doctor tells me, is good therapy to go somewhere that makes you feel worse. Go in there and get exposure and then get out and go somewhere where you can kind of get calmed back down and then repeat the process. And so, I’ve been going and eating and having lunch with my family. I go to Kelley’s house and get in the living room with her kids; boy that drives up the symptoms pretty good (laughter). But, it’s been great to spend time with them. It’s unusual, the time that I’ve been able to spend with them since we’re not racing.
    There are six types of concussions as far as what part of the body they really affect. Mainly I’ve got ocular imbalance issues. They are all connected. And so, you can have an injury to the ocular or the balance and it will affect the emotion. And it is all sort of tied together. So, if you injure one part of your brain, all of them get deficient in some way, shape, or form. So, you have all these other symptoms. And you’ve just really got to corral and fix that one area and it stops affecting the rest of it. So, we’re working on it.”
    Q) YOU’VE BEEN A BIG ADVOCATE FOR PEOPLE WITH CONCUSSIONS IN THE SPORTS WORLD. DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR OTHER DRIVERS THAT MIGHT HAVE THE SAME SYMPTOMS BUT ARE AFRAID TO STAND UP TO IT?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “It’s really hard, as a driver, to say that you’ve got a problem. And it’s hard to tell someone what to do in that situation. If you’re not feeling good; for me, I was sort of scared straight into getting checked out. When I got hurt in 2012, it was so severe and my body changed and my mind changed so much, I just had to get it looked at. I couldn’t go every day trying to self-manage my issues. And I just feel like, hopefully, anytime anybody gets dinged-up, or realized that they’re just not right, or they’re foggy, or whatever their symptoms are, that they would reach out to a neurologist and get checked out. And there’s easy access with our sport. We’ve got a lot of great people that are part of the sport and who have been part of the sport for a long time, that handle those issues and can get you to the right people.
    It’s hard because you basically put yourself out there to be pulled out of the car. But man, your quality of life is so important. Your health beyond your driving career is so important. If you plan on having a family, or have a family already, those things are going to be a priority. There are so many reasons to do the right thing and go ahead and get the help you need and get back in the car, when you’re healthy. I’ve learned a lot through this experience in the last three or four years and feel like it’s a hard decision to make. And I feel like it would be even harder, the younger you are, and the situation you’re in when you’re trying to get a career going and just trying to make a living driving cars, it would be tougher. Being in the situation I’m in now, having ran for so long, maybe it wasn’t as challenging or as hard a decision to make, to make the right choice. But if I was 21 and just getting started or very young, it would be so hard to make that decision. So, I can definitely understand the point of view from the drivers.”
    Q) OUTSIDE OF NASCAR, HAVE ANY OTHER PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES REACHED OUT TO YOU TO TALK ABOUT CONCUSSIONS? DO YOU FEEL LIKE MAYBE YOU OPEN A DOOR FOR OTHER SPORTS TO MAYBE LOOK AT CONCUSSIONS MORE SERIOUSLY FOR OTHER ATHLETES?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “I don’t know. I just know I’m trying to take care of myself. I’ve talked to a lot of drivers. I’ve talked to a lot of people. You get in this situation and a lot of people reach out and a lot of people have their own experiences that they want to share. And when you’re going through that, you definitely want to share your experience with people who have had a common experience. It’s so frustrating trying to explain your symptoms to somebody who’s never had a concussion. And it’s so frustrating trying to explain to somebody what just regular day-to-day life is like when you’ve got these symptoms. Nobody can see it. You can’t scan and see it. Doctors can’t see it. They really rely on the patient to be honest and upfront. So, when you can talk to someone who has been through it, it’s a great experience and it helps both of you, to be honest with you. So, there’s been a lot of that. And I really appreciate those calls and relationships I have with those guys.”
    Q) IS IT AMAZING TO YOU HOW FAR WE HAVE ADVANCED MEDICALLY?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “I think about that. I’m so thankful that there is knowledge and there is rehabilitation that is specific to what I have going on. There is just not this umbrella of treatment that they sort of give to everybody. They have specific ways to help and heal specific types of concussions and certain symptoms. That is why I think I enjoy talking to my doctor so often and going to see him so often is because you have so many questions. Every day you get a new concern or a new question and you really can’t wait to get in the room and be able to talk to him about it. For them to have the knowledge they have today versus where we were 10 or 20 years ago is something I am very thankful for and I feel very fortunate when I got to see my doctor he will put me in front of four or five different specialists that handle a lot of different things as far as my rehabilitation and medication and so forth. There is so much to grab on to. There is so much to learn and so much positive things to take back from the evaluations when you are able to get in front of all those people and hear all the specific things that are happening to you and what you need to do and why it’s happening and how you can help it. We didn’t know all that stuff before and there is still a lot to be learned. I like to see my doctor and I like to get in there and learn as much as I can and try to understand the progress we are making and what to expect. There is still a lot to be learned though. There have been so many advances and I feel so fortunate to have the treatment and the access to the treatment that I have.”
    Q) IN TALKING TO YOUR DOCTORS HAS IT ALWAYS BEEN WHEN YOU ARE HEALTHY AND SAFE TO GET BACK IN? OR HAVE THEY AT ANY POINT INTRODUCED AN ELEMENT OF IF?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “No that is not the conversation your doctor is going to have with you when he is trying to get you right. You are just worrying about getting normal. You go in there and you see your doctor and all you and him talk about and all he cares about is fixing you. He doesn’t care about my racing or whatever I do as a profession. He is just trying to fix what is wrong with me. That is his job. He is not a counselor or a psychologist. That is not his profession so he is just telling me do this treatment, take these medications, do this every day and I promise you we are going to get you right. And that is not the conversation you are going to have in the middle of treatment with someone who is suffering or someone who is going through that process. The conversations I have had with him is that he believes we are going to fix it. He believes that he can make me stronger and that I will be able to pick up where I left off.”
    Q) HOW LONG ARE YOU HERE FOR? WILL YOU GET INVOLVED WITH TALKING TO JEFF (GORDON) AND GREG IVES ABOUT THE RACE/COMPETITION? 
    Earnhardt Jr.: “I doubt I will get too in depth with that. I just wanted to come and see everybody. I got to go see my guys they would be really upset if I didn’t. I am real happy to see all you guys and just whoever I run into on the way from A to B. It’s been so weird not to be at the track. You don’t really realize how many relationships and friendships you have and how much you appreciate them until you are not able to have access to it. Just to be able to come to the track was something I was excited about. I’m going to go into the garage to the hauler and I will stick around until after practice is over and things kind of calm down, so I can see my guys when they are not working. Then I’m probably going to go back home.”
    Q) YOU’VE HAD A GREAT CAREER IF IT CAME TO THAT WOULD YOU CONSIDER? HAVE YOU THOUGHT ABOUT IT FROM THAT PERSPECTIVE? 
    Earnhardt Jr.: “What? You didn’t say the word. (Laughs)”
    Q) RETIREMENT?
    Earnhardt Jr.: “When I went to see Dr. Petty for the first time in 2012 and then he set me up with the guys in Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania) they told me that our process was to get better and go back to racing. This one is no different. When I first went to see my doctor in this particular instance it was I need to get right because I need to get back in the car as soon as I can. I’m surprised that I’ve missed this many races. I never thought this would take this long. I didn’t have a massive accident and I didn’t have really crazy symptoms. This thing happened so awkward where we had the accident in Michigan and then the symptoms crept in very slowly like two weeks later. I didn’t think this was that serious, but it had gotten to a point to where I definitely didn’t need to be in the racecar. At that point you’ve got to go get checked out and get ahold of it and figure out how to fix it. But, from the very onset of this it was ‘man this will go away in a couple of weeks. I’m going to have to miss a race or two and we will get back in the car and we will get going again.’ I’m thinking about, well it’s going to put more pressure on me to win a race to get in the Chase and all that stuff. I have every intention of honoring my current contract. I sat with Rick (Hendrick) before this happened a couple of months ago to talk about an extension. That is the direction that we are going. As soon as I can get healthy and get confident in how I feel and feel like I can drive a car and be great driving it then I want to drive. I want to race. I miss the competition. I miss being here. I miss the people and as Rick likes to say ‘we’ve got unfinished business.’ I’m not ready to stop racing. I’m not ready to quit. It’s a slower process, I wish it wasn’t. I don’t know how long it’s going to take. As impatient as I am I worry about everyone else’s patients as well. But, I’m not going to go in the car until the doctors clear me. The doctors won’t let me race. This is not my decision, but it’s the right decision and I trust what my doctors are telling me. When they say I’m good to go I believe them. If they say I’m healthy and I can race I’m going to race.”(Team Chevy)(8-5-2016)
  • Watkins Glen Driver Notes & Facts:
    � Jeff Gordon leads the series in starts at Watkins Glen with 23. Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Matt Kenseth lead all active drivers with 16.
    � 20 different drivers have won at Watkins Glen International in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, led by Tony Stewart with five wins; followed by Jeff Gordon with four. Kyle Busch leads all active drivers with two.
    � Jeff Gordon leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in road course wins with nine (Sonoma, five; Watkins Glen, four); Tony Stewart has the second most road course wins all-time with eight (Watkins Glen, five; Sonoma, three).
    � NASCAR Hall of Famer Bobby Allison holds the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series record for the most wins at a single road course track with six – Riverside International Raceway.
    � Four drivers have posted consecutive wins at Watkins Glen, including three consecutive by Mark Martin (1993, ’94, ’95) and Jeff Gordon (1997, ’98, ’99). The other two drivers to win consecutive races at Watkins Glen are Tony Stewart (2004, ’05) and Marcos Ambrose (2011, ’12).
    � All five of the active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winners at Watkins Glen participated in at least one or more races before visiting Victory Lane.
    � Joey Logano (2015) competed at Watkins Glen six times before winning; the longest span of any the five active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winners.
    � Three NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers have posted their first career win at Watkins Glen: Steve Park (08/13/2000), Marcos Ambrose (08/15/11) and AJ Allmendinger (08/11/14).
    � Brad Keselowski and Mark Martin lead the series in runner-up finishes at Watkins Glen with three each.
    � Mark Martin leads the series in top-five finishes at Watkins Glen with 12; followed by Ricky Rudd with eight. Tony Stewart leads all active drivers with seven.
    � Mark Martin leads the series in top-10 finishes at Watkins Glen with 16; followed by Ricky Rudd, Rusty Wallace and Tony Stewart with 10 each.
    � Carl Edwards leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average finishing position at Watkins Glen with an 8.364.
    � Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Matt Kenseth lead the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Watkins Glen without visiting Victory Lane at 16 each. � Jeff Gordon leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in laps led at Watkins Glen with 262 laps led in 23 starts.
    � Danica Patrick and Patty Moise are the only two female NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers to compete at Watkins Glen International.
    (NASCAR)
  • Watkins Glen Cup TV Schedule different than the norm, race on USA Network: As NBC Sports Group stands just two days away from the Opening Ceremony of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, this weekend’s NASCAR action from Watkins Glen International lands on USA Network and CNBC. Coverage kicks off Saturday with XFINITY Series racing at 1:30pm/et on CNBC, followed by Sprint Cup racing Sunday at 2:00pm/et on USA Network. NBC Sports surrounds Jeff Gordon’s continued run in the #88 car, as Dale Earnhardt Jr. remains sidelined with concussion-like symptoms. NBCSN presents a special edition of NASCAR America Friday at 12:00pm/et, with complete live coverage of Earnhardt Jr.’s press conference, when he will address his condition and expected return to racing.
    NBC Sports begins its Sprint Cup coverage from one of the most unique tracks in NASCAR Friday with practice at 12:30pm/et on NBCSN, followed by final practice at 3:00pm/et on NBCSN. Saturday’s Sprint Cup qualifying begins at 12:00pm/et on CNBC.
    USA Network’s race day coverage begins at 2:00pm/et with Countdown to Green, followed by Sprint Cup racing from “The Glen” at 2:30pm/et. An on-site post-race show wraps up the afternoon at 5:30pm/et.(NBC)(8-5-2016)
  • Earnhardt Jr. to meet with the media at Watkins Glen: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Chevy, is scheduled to meet with the members of the media on Friday, Aug. 5, at 12:00pm/et in the Watkins Glen International media center. Earnhardt Jr. has missed the last three races, suffering from a concussion.(HMS)(8-5-2016)
  • Kenseth to make 600th Cup start: With the drop of the green flag on Sunday, #20-Matt Kenseth will make his 600th career Sprint Cup Series start in Sunday’s Cheez-It 355 at Watkins Glen. Kenseth is the 25th driver to achieve the 600 start milestone in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (JGR), see full all-time list on the All-Time / Consecutive Starts page.(8-5-2016)
  • Rookies make history: Last weekend Sunoco Rookie of the year candidates won all three NASCAR national series races for the first time in history – Chris Buescher (NASCAR Sprint Cup Series), 23, Erik Jones (NASCAR XFINITY Series), 20, and William Byron (NASCAR Camping World Truck Series), 18. Their average age is 20.33.(NASCAR)(8-5-2016)
  • McDowell to make 200th Cup start: NASCAR driver Michael McDowell will celebrate his 200th career Sprint Cup Series start when he takes the green flag at Watkins Glen International this Sunday. The nine-year NASCAR veteran will pilot the #95 Thrivent Financial Chevy for Circle Sport-Leavine Family Racing in the Cheez-It 355. McDowell is thrilled to celebrate this milestone at a track filled with such rich racing history and where he has recorded seven starts. Last year he was able to capture his best finish, a Top-20, which he hopes to improve on after the team tested at the track just last week and had fast times on the leaderboard during green flag runs. “Two hundred starts is crazy,” said McDowell. “I’m excited for another road course race. We had a great test at Watkins Glen last week, and it was very helpful having the test since they have a new surface at the track now.” Thrivent Financial will be the primary sponsor of the #95 Chevy during the Watkins Glen race weekend (CSLFR95 PR), see full all-time list on the All-Time / Consecutive Starts page.(8-5-2016)
  • Cancer is a family fight for former race car driver Shawna Robinson: When former race car driver Shawna Robinson completed her final radiation treatment for Stage 3 breast cancer in September 2015, she thought the dreaded disease was in her rearview mirror. After all, she was in remission. A little more than six months later, cancer again would affect her family. Her son, Tanner Clark, was diagnosed with testicular cancer just two days before his 20th birthday. “I was a mess [when Tanner was diagnosed],” the 51-year-old Robinson said. “I didn’t know what to think. But then you have to pull yourself together because you have to be strong for him and let him know we’ll get through it.” Robinson is one of just 16 women to compete at NASCAR’s highest level and one of three, along with Janet Guthrie and Danica Patrick, to race in the Daytona 500.(see full article at ESPNW)(8-5-2016)
  • Road Course Wins: All-Time(3 or more wins)
    Driver, Wins 
    Jeff Gordon, 9*
    Tony Stewart, 8*
    Rusty Wallace, 6
    Bobby Allison, 6
    Richard Petty, 6
    Ricky Rudd, 6
    Darrell Waltrip, 5
    Tim Richmond, 5
    Dan Gurney, 5
    David Pearson, 4
    Mark Martin, 4
    Kyle Busch, 4*
    Ernie Irvan, 3
    Geoff Bodine, 3
    Tim Flock, 3
    Cale Yarborough, 3
    * active
  • Joey Logano on XFINITY pole at Watkins Glen: #12-Joey Logano won the Coors Light pole for the Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen International with a speed of 124.552mph. #22-Brad Keselowski will start second. The rest of the top 10: #2-Paul Menard, #42-Kyle Larson, #18-Kyle Busch, #19-Daniel Suarez, #60-Trevor Bayne, #3-Ty Dillon, #7-Justin Allgaier, and #1-Elliott Sadler.
    Did Not Qualify: #93-Starr.
    The starting lineup is posted on the Watkins Glen starting lineup page (pdf).(8-6-2016)
  • Watkins Glen XFINITY Qualifying Notes:
    Joey Logano(i) won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 22nd Annual Zippo 200 at The Glen with a lap of 70.814 seconds, 124.552 mph.
    This is his 31st pole in 156 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first pole and 10th top-10 start in 2016.
    This is his second pole in nine races at Watkins Glen International.
    Brad Keselowski(i) (second) posted his ninth top-10 start of 2016 and his seventh in eight races at Watkins Glen International.
    Paul Menard(i) (third) posted his eighth top-10 start at Watkins Glen International. It is his fourth in six races this season.
    Erik Jones (13th) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(8-6-2016)


    News from August 4, 2016


  • Truex Jr. Signs New Contract; Bass Pro Shops Increase Sponsorship: Furniture Row Racing announced that Martin Truex Jr. has signed a new two-year agreement to drive the team’s #78 Toyota Camry in NASCAR’s Cup Series. The new contract takes effect starting with the 2017 season. The Denver-based racing organization also announced that Bass Pro Shops and Tracker Boats, which joined Furniture Row Racing as a partner in 2016, will increase its primary sponsorship schedule on Truex’s #78 Toyota from 12 to 16 races in 2017, starting with the season-opening Daytona 500.
    The expansion builds on the long-standing relationship between Bass Pro Shops and Truex Jr., an avid outdoorsman and longtime fishing buddy of Bass Pro Shops founder/CEO Johnny Morris. In addition to serving as Truex’s first sponsor when he started his NASCAR career, Bass Pro Shops and Tracker Boats were the primary sponsors for two NASCAR Xfinity Series championships in 2004 and 2005, as well as the primary sponsor for Truex’s first three years in the Sprint Cup Series.
    “The signing of Martin Truex Jr. to a new contract and Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats adding more races to its primary sponsorship package are signs of strength and confidence for the future of Furniture Row Racing,” said team president Joe Garone. “Martin has proved over and over that he is one of the blue chip drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and we are elated that he will continue to drive our #78 Toyota.”
    Garone added, “Bass Pro Shops has been one of the most visible, committed and respected sponsors in NASCAR for many years. We are grateful that the company is making an additional commitment to our team. Adding Bass Pros Shops, Tracker Boats and Auto-Owners Insurance to our sponsorship family this season has played a vital role, along with Furniture Row and Denver Mattress, in the success and growth of our company.”
    Bass Pro Shops founder/CEO Johnny Morris said of the announcement: “We are excited to elevate our support and partnership with our good friend Martin Truex Jr., an amazing competitor on the track and a passionate sportsman who loves the outdoors. It brings us tremendous pride to see Bass Pro Shops and Tracker Boats prominently displayed and have Martin personally representing our brands. Together with our longstanding friends at Toyota and Furniture Row Racing, we believe our partnership with Martin has a very bright future.”
    Truex, 36, said, “I am pleased that we’re going to continue our momentum from this season. This is where I want to be, driving the #78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota. We’ve come a long way in a short period of time. There are many reasons to feel excited and optimistic about the future of our racing program starting with the commitment from our team owner Barney Visser, the support from Toyota, the technical alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing and the Bass Pro Shops sponsorship. We definitely have the resources and talent to go after victories and championships. I want to thank Barney and Joe Garone for the confidence that they have placed in me and also want to thank my good friend and hunting/fishing partner Johnny Morris for the continued support from Bass Pro Shops and Tracker Boats.”(Furniture Row Racing)(8-4-2016)
  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Watkins Glen:
    #14-Tony Stewart (5 wins)…………………… 116.1
    #18-Kyle Busch (2)…………………………. 109.9
    #47-AJ Allmendinger (1)…………………….. 99.9
    #2-Brad Keselowski……………………. 99.4
    #48-Jimmie Johnson…………………….. 98.4
    #19-Carl Edwards………………………… 95.1
    #41-Kurt Busch……………………………. 94.5
    #4-Kevin Harvick (1)………………………… 92.9
    #78-Martin Truex Jr………………………. 90.8
    #42-Kyle Larson………………………….. 89.7
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2015 races (11 total) among active drivers at Watkins Glen International.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)
  • Watkins Glen Track Notes & History:
    � After several events were held on the streets of Watkins Glen, a permanent facility was opened in 1956.
    � The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race was in 1957, won by Buck Baker (83.064 mph, 08/04/1957).
    � After a six-year absence, NASCAR returned to The Glen in 1964 and 1965.
    � After a 21-year absence, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series returned to The Glen, and has run one race a year there since 1986.
    � The first NSCS race at Watkins Glen was scheduled for 101.2-miles in 1957, the second race was 161.7-miles (1964) and the third race was 151.8-miles (1965). Every race since has been scheduled for 220.5-miles.
    � Underwent repave after last season.(NASCAR)
  • Pocono penalties/warnings announced: NASCAR has announced penalties and warnings following the Pennsylvania 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway on August 1st.
    #41-Kurt Busch team has been assessed a P2-level penalty after NASCAR officials found the right rear quarter panel was modified after race inspection last weekend at Pocono Raceway. Tony Gibson, crew chief for the Stewart-Haas Racing #41 team, was fined $10,000 and will continue to be on NASCAR Probation through Dec. 31. The infraction was found in sections 12.1; 20.4, 20.4.16 and 20.4.2 of the NASCAR Rule Book, all pertaining to body specifications and including, “All braces used to support fenders and quarter panels must be straight.” Busch was sent to the rear of the field to start the race for the unapproved body modification.
    The gas man for the #34 team of race winner Chris Buescher, Josh Patch, was fined $1,000 and the team was assessed a P1 penalty for safety violations at Pocono. NASCAR pit-road officiating found Patch was “on the service side of the pit wall with face shield up.” Sections 12.1 and 12.5.3.2.1 of the NASCAR Rule Book apply.
    The #7-Regan Smith and #23-David Ragan cars failed pre-race laser inspection twice on Sunday. The #13-Casey Mears and #95-Michael McDowell failed pre-qualifying laser inspection twice on Saturday. And the #7, #23, and #42-Kyle Larson cars failed pre-qualifying template inspection twice. All received written warnings.
    Three teams received written warnings and a loss of 15 minutes of practice time after having inspection trouble. #18-Kyle Busch, #20-Matt Kenseth and #78-Martin Truex Jr. all failed pre-qualifying template inspection three times on Saturday.(NASCAR)
    See the Pocono Post-Event Penalty & Warning Report (pdf) for more.(8-4-2016)
  • Stewart dismisses talk of possible return in 2017…but: Jeff Gordon retired at the end of the 2015 season, but when Gordon was needed as a substitute driver for #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., he quickly answered the call from team owner Rick Hendrick. So isn’t it possible that after Stewart retires from NASCAR, he could potentially come back and – “No,” Stewart said Wednesday, cutting off a reporter. “Let me help you not waste breath here. No, not doing it.” Stewart then hedged a bit, saying if it was just for one week and his race team was in desperate need of a substitute, then “obviously I’m 100% dedicated to Stewart-Haas Racing and if that’s what it took, I’d be there in a heartbeat.” But he quickly added: “I don’t want to come back and run five or six races.” One reason, he said, is because of the increased demands. The sport’s advancements in technology means there are troves of data to sort through after practices, and “that’s time-consuming,” he said. “I spend more time than I ever have looking at it now,” he added.(USA Today)(8-4-2016)
  • Gordon to make 800th Cup start: Jeff Gordon, who will be driving the #88 Axalta Chevy at Watkins Glen, will make his 800th career NASCAR Cup Series start this weekend, which is 9th all-time. He has made all 799 of his career Cup starts while driving for car owner Rick Hendrick. In addition to his four championships (1995, 1997, 1998 and 2001), Gordon has earned 93 Cup victories, which ranks him third on the all-time wins list. He’s a three-time Daytona 500 winner, a record five-time Brickyard 400 winner and has seven wins at Darlington Raceway. He has racked up 81 poles, which also ranks him third on the all-time pole award winner’s list, 325 top-five finishes, 475 top-10s and has led a total of 24,929 laps in his 24-year career.(HMS), see full all-time list on the All-Time / Consecutive Starts page.(8-4-2016)
  • Johnson to Highlight Foundation at Watkins Glen: Jimmie Johnson will wear the Blue Bunny Helmet of Hope, which features five charities working to improve K-12 public education, during the race this weekend at Watkins Glen International. The five charities selected this year include: ArtWell in Philadelphia; Carlos Gilbert Elementary Parents! Teachers! Kids! in Santa Fe, New Mexico; Change for Kids in New York City; Inside the Outdoors Foundation in Costa Mesa, California, and Mercy Child Advocacy Center in Sioux City, Iowa. In addition to the Helmet of Hope, Johnson’s #48 Lowe’s Chevy will feature the special star logos of the Jimmie Johnson Foundation 10th Anniversary paint scheme. Johnson has been quite successful running the paint scheme with three wins, two top-five finishes and three top-10s. This year the paint scheme celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Jimmie Johnson Foundation and features the foundation’s programs and activities, including the Blue Bunny Helmet of Hope, the Champions Grant program, the Jimmie Johnson Foundation Wellness Challenge and Team Up For Technology. To date, the Jimmie Johnson Foundation has contributed more than $8.8 million to schools and non-profits across the country.(HMS), see images of the scheme on the #48 Team Schemes page (8-4-2016)
  • TBR adds associate sponsor for Watkins Glen: Tommy Baldwin Racing (TBR) announced that Schultz Heating & Cooling will be an associate sponsor on Regan Smith’s #7-Advanced Patient Care (APC) Chevy at Watkins Glen International. This will be Schultz Heating’s first time as an associate sponsorship on the #7 car. Schultz Heating & Cooling has been in the business of HVAC repair and service for over five years. Their installers and technicians have more than 25 years of experience in the field and work hard to make sure the entire staff is up-to-date about all things heating and cooling. Reliability, workmanship, and satisfaction is most important. “We are huge fans of Tommy Baldwin Racing and can’t wait for our company to be on the 7 car at a race so close to our home,” said Mike Schultz, owner of Schultz Heating and Cooling. “We are excited to support TBR and the team because like Tommy and his team, we have worked hard to grow into a successful business. We have been in business for five years now and have over 25 years of experience in HVAC systems.”(140buzz/TBR)(8-4-2016)
  • Austin Dillon throws out 1st pitch in Arizona: #3-Austin Dillon threw out the first pitch Tuesday evening before the Arizona Diamondbacks took on the Washington Nationals at Chase Field. Dillon participated in batting practice, swapped his racing helmet for a Diamondbacks jersey and threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Dillon made the stop in the desert to promote the Can-Am 500 weekend on Nov. 11-13 at Phoenix International Raceway. “Phoenix is an awesome city,” said Dillon. “It’s fun to catch a Diamondbacks game because I’ve never been to one. It’s been fun to watch what these guys do for a living. Being out there on the field and experiencing what they experience is a lot different than what I do on the weekends.” Prior to the game, Dillon chatted and took pictures with Diamondbacks players, in addition to meeting with fans at the ballpark. The much anticipated jersey and helmet swap took place just before the first pitch between Dillon and D-Backs catcher Tuffy Gosewisch.(PIR)(8-4-2016)
  • Chastain gets Watkins Glen sponsor: Taughannock Aviation and the Ithaca-Tompkins Regional Airport are returning to sponsor Ross Chastain’s #4 Chevrolet in Saturday’s Zippo 200 at the Glen Xfinity Series race at Watkins Glen International in New York. The Ithaca Airport and Taughannock sponsored Chastain’s run at Watkins Glen last season. Each year, ITH generates more than $30 million for the local economy and nearly $456,000 in sales tax revenue. As a major international and national gateway to Cornell, Ithaca College, TC3 and other major employers, Ithaca-Tompkins Regional Airport has three airlines, a fixed based operator (Taughannock Aviation Corporation), reliable ground transportation and a deep commitment to providing exemplary customer service.(JD Motorsports)(8-4-2016)
  • Kyle Busch fastest in XFINITY second: #18-Kyle Busch was quickest during the second practice session for the Zippo 200 with a speed of 123.006mph. He was followed by: #42-Kyle Larson, #22-Brad Keselowski, #12-Joey Logano, #7-Justin Allgaier, #2-Paul Menard, #60-Trevor Bayne, #62-Brandan Gaughan, #20-Erik Jones, and #19-Daniel Suarez. 35 drivers participated in the session.
    See complete results on the Watkins Glen practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(8-7-2016)
  • Kyle Busch paces first XFINITY practice: #18-Kyle Busch was fastest during opening practice at Watkins Glen International with a speed of 122.390mph. #12-Joey Logano was second, followed by: #42-Kyle Larson, #2-Paul Menard, #7-Justin Allgaier, #60-Trevor Bayne, #22-Brad Keselowski, #62-Brendan Gaughan, #3-Ty Dillon, and #16-Ryan Reed. 29 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Watkins Glen practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(8-7-2016)
  • Clements picks up Watkins Glen sponsors: When Jeremy Clements rolls into Watkins Glen for Saturday’s Zippo 200, the #51 Chevy Camaro SS will have an ‘all-automotive” look to it, RepairableVehicles.com will be joined by Jack’s Muffler & Brake and Rapid Tire Service. A family run business with 40 years of satisfied customers, Jack’s Muffler & Brake in Newburgh, NY has built a solid reputation for quality work and excellent customer service. From lawn mowers to loaders, Rapid Tire Service handles all of your tire needs. Located in Montgomery, NY, RTS is a three-generation, family-owned and operated tire sales and service company. Since 1981, they have provided all major brands with a great price, as well. Jeremy currently sits in 13th position in the points, just 24 points out of Chase contention. Supporting the team as associate sponsors on the 51 car this week are Coca Cola of Spartanburg, Fish Camp, Robert Ianuario, Cometic, Wix and Kollegetown.(Jeremy Clements Racing)(8-4-2016)


    News from August 3, 2016


  • Stewart to run Coca-Cola/Bobby Allison tribute scheme at Darlington: The 1971 and 1972 Southern 500s were owned by Bobby Allison. The legendary racer from Hueytown, Alabama, proved he was indeed “The Real Thing” at Darlington Raceway, driving his red-and-gold Coca-Cola machine to emphatic, back-to-back victories at the tough and gritty South Carolina track. Allison dominated from start-to-finish in both races at the 1.366-mile oval. He started from the pole each time and led 558 of the 734 laps available (76 percent). He paced the field for all but 38 laps in the 1971 Southern 500 and led a race-high 229 laps in the 1972 Southern 500. The victories were the first of five premiere series wins Allison earned at Darlington.
    In 2016, Tony Stewart will try to emulate Allison’s 1971 and 1972 performances when he competes at Darlington on Sept. 4 in his final Southern 500. Driving a No. 14 Coca-Cola Chevrolet SS that will match the paint scheme Allison drove to those epic wins, Stewart will certainly look the part. With Coca-Cola’s tagline of that era, “The Real Thing”, emblazoned on the car, the authentic look from Allison’s race-winning cars has been recreated on Stewart’s Chevrolet, right down to the gold wheels and cubic-inch displacement boast on the hood. “I’ve been a member of the Coca-Cola Racing Family for my entire NASCAR career and been a part of some pretty cool and unique promotions, but this one is definitely my favorite,” said Stewart, who will retire following the season finale Nov. 20 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. “The throwback weekend Darlington has created makes it the perfect place to run a scheme that has a ton of history with Bobby Allison and Coca-Cola.”
    Stewart is a three-time NASCAR premiere series champion with 49 career victories. Allison is the 1983 NASCAR premiere series champion with 85 career victories. Allison is in the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Stewart is a first-ballot lock for the NASCAR Hall of Fame. “Those red-and-gold Coca-Cola cars were very good to me,” said Allison, who was inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2011, the same year Stewart won his third premiere series championship. “From 1970 through 1975, Coca-Cola was on my car and we won a lot of races. We won 11 races in ’71, the most I ever had in a single season, and then we came back to win 10 more in ’72. And that first win at Darlington – it was such a tough track and such a long race – it meant so much. Tony Stewart is a real racer who would’ve fit right in during the time I raced in NASCAR. He’s a perfect fit for this Coca-Cola Chevy. I know what car I’ll be watching in the Southern 500.”
    Darlington is one of only two venues where Stewart is winless in NASCAR’s top division. In 23 career premier series starts at the venerable track, Stewart’s best finish is third, earned in the 2009 and 2012 Southern 500s. “Races at Darlington have been pretty tough for me,” Stewart said. “We’ve had some decent runs there, but it just seems like you really have to put everything together the whole day. If you can say you won a race at Darlington – that’s a feather in your cap because you conquered something that’s very hard to obtain. That’s something to be proud of, knowing that you’re in a group of drivers with names like Allison and Pearson and Petty – the pioneers of our sport.” Coca-Cola, with a NASCAR lineage that goes back more than 50 years, has been a part of Stewart’s NASCAR career since his rookie season in 1999.
    “We are humbled by moments like today when two of NASCAR’s most respected drivers come together over an iconic car emblazoned with our brand,” said Ben Reiling, director, sports marketing, Coca-Cola North America. “Together, we commemorate Coca-Cola’s role within NASCAR and honor and celebrate Bobby Allison and Tony Stewart for what they stand for in the history of motorsports.”(SHR), see an image of the scheme on the #14 Team Schemes page (8-3-2016)
  • Bayne Ready for Double-Duty at Watkins Glen: This weekend’s events at Watkins Glen International mark the first time since the conclusion of the 2014 season that Trevor Bayne, driver of the #6 AdvoCare Ford Fusion, will compete in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) and the NASCAR XFINITY Series. Bayne, a two-time winner in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, will pilot the #60 AdvoCare Ford Mustang for Roush Fenway Racing. “Double-duty will definitely be fun this weekend at Watkins Glen,” said Bayne. “It’s been a while since we’ve raced in the XFINITY Series and I’m really excited to have AdvoCare on board for both races this weekend.” Bayne has recorded two top-10s in the NASCAR XFINITY Series at Watkins Glen and is currently 28 points behind the 16th and final position in the Chase for the Sprint Cup grid.(Roush Fenway Racing)(8-3-2016)
  • NASCAR Enhances Business Executive Team: NASCAR announced several changes within its leadership structure. Effective immediately, Steve Phelps will assume the role as NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Global Sales and Marketing Officer. The business areas that Phelps will oversee include Global Marketing, Partnership and Series Marketing, Business Development, Integrated Marketing Communications, Licensing & Consumer Products, and NASCAR Digital Media. He will continue to serve as NASCAR’s top Officer in the Charlotte office. NASCAR has enjoyed tremendous global growth and is now being distributed in 185 countries and territories around the world. Phelps will now lead a strategic global marketing effort, as NASCAR digital and social platforms create the potential to lead further global growth and direct engagement through NASCAR.com and key social platforms. The strategy will be to transition International admirers of the sport into more engaged, passionate fans.
    Jill Gregory has been named Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. Gregory joined NASCAR in July 2007 after working in executive roles at Bank of America and Sprint. She was among the inaugural group of executives honored as “Game Changers” in 2011 by Sports Business Journal, recognizing the top female executives in the sports world. The business areas that Gregory will oversee include Brand and Consumer Marketing, Brand Platforms, Entertainment Marketing, Driver Marketing, Team Marketing, Social Media and Analytics and Insights. Gregory revised NASCAR’s marketing strategy this year so the organization now leads with fan engagement and digital and social media first, which has been reflected in the popular “Ready. Set. Race” marketing campaign. The #Hashtag500 social media program that Gregory spearheaded saw the highest volume of NASCAR-related conversation ever measured on record, while NASCAR also won three Silver CLIO Sports Awards this year for Integrated Campaign, Social Media and Film.
    Norris Scott has been named Vice President, Analytics and Insights, a new position within NASCAR. Scott, who joined NASCAR in 2005 in Partnership Marketing after working at ESPN and the NFL, now will oversee the growing consumer research functions at NASCAR including Social Analytics (NASCAR Fan & Media Engagement Center), Digital Research, Sponsorship Valuation, and Media and Market Research. NASCAR’s research activities will continue to evolve and expand to serve the industry with best-in-class analytics and insights. Under his leadership, Scott will take this function to the next level.
    Lou Garate has been promoted to Vice President, Partnership Marketing. Garate has been at NASCAR for nearly 10 years, working closely with official partners such as Chevrolet, Ford, Goodyear, MillerCoors and Toyota. He has developed and strengthened many partner assets including the Coors Light Pole Award, Coors Light Silver Bullet Bash, NASCAR Evening Series and Victory Lap fueled by Sunoco. Garate is an industry veteran with experience on the property side (NFL) and agency side (Millsport). He now will expand his role working with NASCAR’s growing stable of sponsors and partners.
    “We’ve been bold in our efforts to modernize and diversify our business and executive team, and these changes further reflect that fact,” said Brian France, NASCAR chairman and CEO. “Today’s announcement underlines the importance that NASCAR puts on specific areas of our business, and has been done in sync with structure and personnel changes made last month in the racing area. I’m delighted to see the growth of a number of our colleagues throughout NASCAR. All changes announced today will pay significant and immediate dividends for the sport.”(NASCAR)(8-3-2016)
  • Panini’s NASCAR Cards Available: In association with Panini America, the world’s largest sports and entertainment collectibles company, NASCAR fans and collectors alike can purchase the first of four officially licensed trading card products expected in 2016. To coincide with the release, NASCAR Sunoco Rookie of the Year frontrunner Chase Elliott will attend the Panini VIP Party at the National Sports Collectors Convention in Atlantic City, New Jersey, later this week. The new NASCAR trading cards, a classically licensed-product, are meticulously produced by Panini and will continue to be a nostalgic collectible for fans. The first line of officially licensed trading cards, available today, encompasses teams and drivers across the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series”, NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Through this multi-year agreement, NASCAR Team Properties and Panini will deliver high-quality trading card products each year. NASCAR trading cards are available at Walmart, Target and hobby stores nationwide in addition to the Fanatics Trackside Superstore and NASCAR.com Superstore.
    2016 NASCAR sets include:
    � 2016 Panini Prizm NASCAR – Available now
    � 2016 Panini Torque NASCAR – Early September
    � 2016 Panini Certified NASCAR – Early October
    � 2016 Panini National Treasures NASCAR – Early November.(Panini America)(8-3-2016)
  • NASCAR Zeroes In On Potential Title Sponsors For Cup Series: NASCAR said that it is talking to “roughly a dozen candidates” to replace Sprint as its Cup Series title sponsor, but the governing body has “zeroed in on around three leading candidates and has swapped term sheets with at least one of them,” according to sources cited by Adam Stern in this week’s SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. Sources said that companies “still in the hunt” include grocery chain Kroger, Yum! Brands, Coca-Cola, South Korea-based Samsung and China-based electronics brand Hisense. There has “been concern in some corners of the industry about how the search is not yet complete, but NASCAR’s top sales executive sounded confident a deal will get done.” NASCAR Chief Sales Officer Jim O’Connell said, “We’re in a really good place; we’re exactly where we thought we’d be time-wise.” Sources said that NASCAR is “likely to end up with at least a four-year deal” in the $25-35M range in annual rights fees. Sprint’s original 10-year deal with NASCAR reportedly was worth $75M in “annual rights and activation fees combined”(Sports Business Daily), see past news on the sponsor search on the NASCAR Sponsorship News page.(8-3-2016)
  • Tommy Baldwin Racing Salutes New York Modified Legend “Dutch” Hoag: Tommy Baldwin Racing (TBR) will head to Watkins Glen International full of New York flavor. The #7 Advanced Patient Care (APC) Chevrolet will carry the familiar paint scheme of Donald “Dutch” Hoag, a multi-time champion at a variety of short tracks throughout the state. Born in nearby Naples, Hoag also ran four Grand National — predecessor to the Sprint Cup Series — races during the 1950’s. “We wanted to recognize Dutch for a few reasons,” said team owner Tommy Baldwin. “He was one of the drivers that my dad looked up to when he started his modified career. I remember when I was a kid, he’d always talk about how Dutch was always going to be the guy to beat, no matter what track we raced.” There was a good reason for that. In additional to the many track championships, Hoag is a multi-time Modified Race of Champions winner. In 1968 he won the coveted event by a full lap. Hoag was also influential in starting many careers. In 1969, Hoag let an eager young crewman take some hot laps in his modified. The following year he fielded a second car for him. That kid, was Geoff Bodine. In 1972, Bodine went on to win his first Race of Champions and had subsequent success in the Sprint Cup Series. “For me, this is not about just running a special paint scheme. It’s a true remembrance of a driver who impacted my family and the entire Northeast modified community. My dad would be proud that we’re doing this,” said Baldwin, who is a native of Long Island. To further the connection, driver Regan Smith was born and raised one-hour North of WGI, in Cato, NY. “If you’re from NY, you know Dutch Hoag,” Smith said. “It’s pretty cool to be able to run his colors this weekend.” Hoag, who passed away in May at the age of 89, won on both asphalt and dirt between the 1940’s and 1970’s.(TBR), see an image of the scheme on the #7 Team Schemes page (8-3-2016)
  • Governor Cuomo Unveils NASCAR/Watkins Glen International License Plate: On Monday (Aug 1), Governor Andrew M. Cuomo unveiled a new Watkins Glen International license plate, available for order beginning Thursday, August 4. The plate is the newest addition to DMV’s NASCAR custom plate series and features the WGI and NASCAR logos with a checkered flag background. The announcement coincides with the 2016 Cheez-It 355 at the Glen – New York State’s only NASCAR race – and one of the highlights of Upstate tourism every summer. The Glen supports Governor Cuomo’s commitment to tourism, which recently reached a new record-high economic impact in New York State of $102 billion – an increase of 25 percent since 2010. “The new Watkins Glen license plate celebrates New York’s strong partnership with this award-winning NASCAR racetrack,” Governor Cuomo said. “New York is proud to host this world-class event at the Glen, which attracts motorsport enthusiasts and drives tourism in the Southern Tier. I encourage racing fans to stop by the DMV exhibit on the Midway during this weekend’s events and take advantage of the services they have to offer.” Personnel from DMV will also be on hand to personally sell the newly-issued plate to NASCAR fans for the first time. DMV staff will help visitors order additional custom plates, renew their registrations, assist with address changes, schedule road and vision tests, and complete web transactions.
    DMV Executive Deputy Commissioner Terri Egan said, “DMV is excited to once again partner with Watkins Glen and make this plate available to racing fans all over the state who make the venue a destination each year. The Glen is a perfect venue for DMV staff to interact with its customers and promote tourism at the same time. I thank Governor Cuomo for providing DMV with this opportunity to connect with customers statewide, and I encourage New Yorkers to order this plate to show their support for the Glen.”
    Watkins Glen International President Michael Printup said, “We are thrilled to unveil this Watkins Glen International license plate. The timing couldn’t be better with New York State’s largest sporting event, The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Cheez-It 355, less than a week away. We’d like to thank Governor Andrew Cuomo and his office for their unyielding support of Watkins Glen International and tourism in our region and state as a whole.”(NY Governor’s Press Office)(8-3-2016)
  • Watkins Glen Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series will run the same Goodyear tire code on all four tire positions at Watkins Glen . . . due to the track repave, this is the first time these teams have run this tire code at The Glen . . . this is a short track tire from Goodyear’s current tire lineup, which Xfinity teams currently run on the right-side at Iowa . . . compared to what was run at Watkins Glen last year, this tire features a slightly tougher compound for heat resistance, which is of prime concern on all repaved tracks . . . this tire was the unanimous selection of the drivers participating in the Goodyear test at The Glen held on May 10-11 . . . drivers participating in that test were Trevor Bayne, Carl Edwards, Kevin Harvick, Kasey Kahne and Joey Logano. . . . it was also confirmed at a two-day NASCAR organizational test at the track last week . . . as on all NASCAR road courses, teams will not run inner liners in their tires at Watkins Glen. Goodyear will also bring its wet weather radials (D-4215) to Watkins Glen for use by both Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series teams, should NASCAR decide that conditions warrant . . . Sprint Cup teams did not have to use the wet weather tires earlier this season at Sonoma . . . Xfinity teams last ran this wet weather tire code at Road America in 2014 (Goodyear), for tire pressures, codes, set limits and more on the Watkins Glen Race Info page
  • Drissi driving for TriStar at road courses: TriStar Motorsports welcomes Tomy Drissi as the driver of the #14 Toyota for the upcoming NASCAR XFINITY Series road course races in Watkins Glen, Mid-Ohio and Road America. A seasoned driver, Tomy Drissi’s obsession for racing began at an early age with street racing on Mulholland Drive in the Hollywood Hills. Throughout the years, Drissi has participated in various racing series; ALMS, Trans-Am, NASCAR and Speed World Challenge and is creditably noted for securing the honor of 2009 Trans-Am Champion. He has also obtained multiple wins in Trans-AM and IMSA/ALMS. His most recent racing career accolade came earlier this year when he participated in the 24 Hours of Daytona and claimed a third place finish. For the past three consecutive years, he has finished third, second and third in the 24 Hours of Daytona. Tomy is more than ready to secure that win and most importantly that watch. In addition to racing, Drissi owns an advertising firm that produces upcoming film displays for cinemas.
    For Watkins Glen, Drissi will feature the Arthritis Foundation on the hood of the #14 Toyota; a cause that holds a personal connection for Drissi as his wife Lacy was diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis at the age of 16 months. Tomy and Lacy are avid supporters of the Arthritis Foundation and their initiatives. The Arthritis Foundation provides resources to those who have been diagnosed and also raises money to send children to camp.(TriStar Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #14 team paint schemes page.(8-3-2016)
  • Clements unveils Darlington Throwback scheme: Jeremy Clements Racing is excited to announce they will be fielding a Throwback paint scheme this coming Labor Day weekend at Darlington Raceway. The #51 Camaro SS will be sponsored by long time partners repairablevehicles.com and will feature the “Black Widow” paint scheme that was driven by a number of racing greats in the late 50’s in the likes of Hall of Famers Buck Baker and Rex White and powered by the renowned engine builders of the time Jeremy’s Grandfather and Great Uncle, Crawford and Louis Clements. Crawford and Louis both also crew chiefed as well for some all time greats. Crawford crew chiefed Hall of Famers Junior Johnson, Buck Baker and AJ Foyt all to wins the early 60s and Louis crew chiefed Rex White to 1960 Cup Championship.(Jeremy Clements Racing), see an image of the car on the #51 team paint schemes page.(8-3-2016)
  • Gdovic to run 2017 season: Brandon Gdovic announces plans to race full time in the NASCAR XFINITY Series beginning in 2017. Gdovic, who has made a name for himself in the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Series, the NASCAR K&N; Pro Series East, and the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, looks to consolidate this talent into a solitary and driven focus on the XFINITY Series. Precision Performance Motorsports is busy preparing their fleet of XFINITY racecars for this next venture.(Precision Performance Motorsports)(8-3-2016)
  • Cope announces Glen sponsors: Derrike Cope Racing with JP Motorsports heads to Watkins Glen with many returning sponsors to the team. As a co-primary, E-hydrate and the “Protein-On-The-Go” pouch will be showcased on the hood of the #70 Xfinity Series car. E-hydrate’s natural protein, hydration and energy products are made from real flavors born in the kitchen, not a laboratory. Their great tasting nutritional products include a line for children, adults, and also active adults. Also joining us as a co-primary sponsor is Sammi’s Best Healthy Coffee Creamers. Sammi’s Best contains Coconut Oil, providing a healthier source of medium chain fatty acids to help maintain good HDL Cholesterol. Glen Mountain Market Bakery & Deli and Ice-Frost will serve as associate sponsors.(Derrike Cope Racing)(8-3-2016)
  • Hammann to debut with Harmon at Watkins Glen: Nicolas Hammann will attempt to make his Xfinity Series debut on August 6 in the Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen in the #74 Mike Harmon Racing Dodge Challenger. Hammann, from Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin and currently a student at UNC Charlotte, was the 2014 North American Nissan GT Academy winner. Hammann’s experience includes: karting, SCCA road racing, endurance racing in a Nissan GTR GT3, the IMSA Continental Tire series in a Nissan 370Z, and the Nissan Micra Cup series. Richfield, Wisconsin-based Quest Engineering Inc., a custom cabinet and closest manufacturer, is the sponsor. Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin-based Northwoods Shelby Club is the associate sponsor.(Mike Harmon Racing)(8-3-2016)
  • Bayne running XFINITY race at Watkins Glen: This weekend’s events at Watkins Glen International mark the first time since the conclusion of the 2014 season that Trevor Bayne, driver of the #6 AdvoCare Ford Fusion, will compete in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and the NASCAR XFINITY Series. Bayne, a two-time winner in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, will pilot the #60 AdvoCare Ford Mustang for Roush Fenway Racing. “Double-duty will definitely be fun this weekend at Watkins Glen,” said Bayne. “It’s been a while since we’ve raced in the XFINITY Series and I’m really excited to have AdvoCare on board for both races this weekend.” Bayne has recorded two top-10s in the NASCAR XFINITY Series at Watkins Glen and is currently 28 points behind the 16th and final position in the Chase for the Sprint Cup grid.(Roush Fenway Racing)(8-3-2016)
  • Iowa XFINITY TV Ratings: NASCAR Xfinity Series racing from Iowa earned a 0.6 final rating and 1.1 million viewers on NBCSN Saturday night, down a tick in ratings but up 1% in viewership from last year (0.7, 1.0M) and down 25% and 21%, respectively, from 2014 on ESPN (0.8, 1.3M). It earned the second-smallest audience of the season ahead of only Kentucky in June (995K).(Sports Media Watch)(8-3-2016)
  • Record crowds possible for NASCAR at Watkins Glen: Racing returns to the Watkins Glen this weekend, and they’re talking about setting records. “We hope to break our record attendance this weekend,” said Watkins Glen International president Michael Printup. “It’s looking good so far, but knock on wood, you never know how ticket buyers are going to react over the next five days.” At most tracks, NASCAR has been a disappointment. TV ratings are declining and NASCAR hasn’t provided attendance estimates since 2012 because the numbers are discouraging. But not at Watkins Glen. “You’ve seen some decline in attendance at other race tracks. Indianapolis is down. Michigan was down in June,” Printup said. “We haven’t seen that. We hope that we can uphold that and we’ll see another huge crowd at Watkins Glen this weekend.”(RochesterFirst)(8-3-2016)


    News from August 2, 2016


     

  • Entry List for the Cheez-It 350 at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International is posted, 40 teams/drivers [for 40 spots] are listed, including: #21-Blaney*, #30-Wise*, #32-Boris Said, #55-Alex Kennedy*, #88-Jeff Gordon, #95-McDowell, #98-Whitt*.
    Drivers who are not a Charter team, an Open Team, and must get in via speed: #21-Blaney, #30-Wise, #55-Kennedy, #98-Whitt
    Since only 40 cars are entered, all drivers will make the race, 40 is the maximum.
    * Open Team (no Charter)
    See the full entry list on Jayski.com’s Watkins Glen Entry List
  • Earnhardt, Jr believes concussion happened at Michigan UPDATE: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. said his doctors believe his concussion-like symptoms started with his June 12 crash at Michigan International Speedway. “Obviously with my history of concussions, knowing the event I had in Michigan, that wreck right there is where they believe I picked up this issue,” Earnhardt said Monday night on his weekly Dale Jr. Download podcast. “I didn’t feel anything that next week. The off week, I went to Germany (on vacation), went to Sonoma, ran good, felt awesome. It was strange these symptoms came out of nowhere. But we started doing a lot of digging, and they seem to feel confident this occurred in Michigan.”
    “This is scary for me because of the way it’s been different. I’m having balance issues. I’ve never had balance issues before. The eye issues with the stability, I’ve never had that before. It started very slowly, gradually and continued to progress until it stopped and stayed where it is. I don’t know what tells me about how long this process is going to be. I felt I had a good understanding of concussions in the past, but this is certainly a new one. They all have different symptoms and own time and length of recovery is different.”(NBC Sports)(8-2-2016)
    UPDATE: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Chevy for Hendrick Motorsports, has not been cleared by physicians to compete in at least the next two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events as he continues to recover from a concussion. He will miss the races at Watkins Glen International (Aug. 7) and Bristol Motor Speedway (Aug. 20). Earnhardt underwent further evaluation today at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Sports Medicine Concussion Program. The driver said Monday on his weekly “The Dale Jr. Download” podcast that he continues to experience issues with balance and gaze stabilization. “We have a break in the schedule after Watkins Glen, so the extra week of recovery time will certainly be a benefit,” said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports. “Dale will be back when he’s ready, and we’re looking forward to that happening, but the priority continues to be his health and well-being. We’ll keep our focus on that and let the doctors guide us.” Jeff Gordon will be the team’s substitute driver at the Watkins Glen road course, where he will make his 800th career NASCAR Cup start, and Bristol. He is NASCAR’s all-time leader with nine road course victories, including four at Watkins Glen. The four-time series champion, who has five wins at Bristol, has made all 799 of his career Cup starts while driving for car owner Hendrick.(HMS)(8-2-2016)
  • Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford to pay tribute to Pearson at Darlington: Wood Brothers Racing and Motorcraft/Quick Lane Racing unveiled their throw-back paint scheme for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The design is a tribute to the 1976 Mercury Montego that David Pearson drove to the unofficial NASCAR triple crown that Bicentennial year four decades ago. With Hall of Fame crew chief Leonard Wood calling the shots from the pit area, Pearson grabbed the triple crown by winning the Daytona 500, the World 600 at Charlotte and the Southern 500, and added seven other victories that season. “We are so excited that we were able to work with Motorcraft, Quick Lane and Ford Performance to make this paint scheme happen,” said Eddie Wood, co-owner of the Wood Brothers Racing Team. “It’s hard to believe that it’s been 40 years since all that happened.” The scheme includes Pearson’s name on the door honoring the winningest driver in the Wood Brothers’ storied 66-year history.
    “David Pearson is such an important part of our history, getting 43 of our 98 wins over seven years, that we’re proud to put his name on this race car,” said team co-owner Len Wood, who along with his brother oversaw the execution of the design down to the smallest detail. “We had to incorporate our current sponsor Motorcraft/Quick Lane into this design yet stay true to the original, right down to the blue stripes across the hood and down the side panels and the silver wheels.” The iconic #21’s Darlington paint scheme includes an image of a Motorcraft oil filter on the C pillar just as there was for Purolator in 1976. The Wood Brothers ran just two cars, the same two cars, between 1976 and 1980. One was set up for speedways and the other for short tracks. The original speedway model is in the Speedway Motors Museum of Speed in Lincoln, Neb. The short-track variation is on display in America’s Car Museum in Tacoma, Wash. In 1976, in addition to the triple crown, the cars won 10 of the 22 races they started, led 1,227 laps, captured eight poles and posted 16 top-five and 18 top-10 finishes. The non-triple crown victories came at Riverside (2), Atlanta, Darlington, Michigan (2) and Ontario (Calif.). The cars ran as Montegos again in 1977 when they won at Riverside and Darlington and grabbed five pole positions, again with Pearson behind the wheel, Wrigley’s Spearmint Gum duct taped to the dash as was his custom. In 1978, 1979 and 1980, the cars ran as Cougars and an opera window replaced the oil filter on the C pillar. As Cougars, they combined for five poles and six wins including triumphs at Dover, Daytona, Charlotte, Darlington, Pocono and Talladega.
    Pearson shared driving duties with Neil Bonnett in 1979 and Bonnett became the team’s sole wheel man in 1980. If anyone thinks the “throwback” paint schemes at Darlington are solely for older NASCAR fans, they are mistaken. A year ago, a 14-year-old fan from Tennessee named Skyler Fox sent his idea for a throwback paint scheme to Wood Brothers Racing. It also was based on the 1976 paint scheme. “I really enjoy old racing,” Fox said. “The throwback race brings back lots of things I never was able to see. This scheme always stood out to me because it was one of the Daytona 500-winning schemes. It also is one of the cleanest, fastest-looking schemes ever.” Also at Darlington this year, driver Ryan Blaney will wear a fire suit patterned after the suit Pearson wore in 1976. “When I first started driving for the Wood Brothers last season, I knew it was going to be a special experience,” Blaney said. “But being able to drive the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Fusion with a paint scheme that really highlights the team’s great history is truly an honor.” In addition, Wood Brothers crew members will be wearing uniforms – complete with white pants with a blue stripe down each leg – that match those worn by their predecessors 40 years ago.(Wood Brothers Racing), see an image of the scheme on the #21 Team Schemes page (8-2-2016)
  • 4th ever win for car #34: When Chris Buescher won the Pennsylvania 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway on August 1, 2016, it was only the 4th time a car running the #34 won a Sprint Cup Series race. The last win in #34 was when David Ragan won the Aaron’s 499 Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega on May 5, 2013 for the third win. The other two wins were big milestones in NASCAR history. NASCAR Hall of Famer driver Wendell Scott won at Jacksonville on December 1, 1963, the only African-American to win a Cup race. The first win by the #34 was by Jim Roper at Charlotte in June 1949, the first ever NASCAR race. For more info on car number wins and some history, see Jayski.com’s Wins by Car Number page.(8-2-2016)
  • NASCAR discusses end of race process: Steve O’Donnell, senior vice president and chief racing development officer for NASCAR explained the end of Monday’s race:
    “What we worked through was really unprecedented in terms of the fog you had rolling in. The reason you kept cars out on the track under caution was to see if the fog was going to roll through, and if you red flagged the race and the fog had lifted, we’ve got a long delay to get back, and we didn’t have that many laps to go. So that’s why we kept cars out originally under caution…. on the red flag … we never lost the track, so in this case, I think most NASCAR fans want to see a complete race. We’ve always stated that we will make every effort to get a complete race in, and in this case since we hadn’t lost the track, we wanted to wait. Unfortunately we had a lightning warning come in, and once the track had to evacuate the grandstands and we could get all the cars confiscated, we made the decision then to unplug it and announce that Chris had been declared the winner of the race.
    We kept looking behind race control and seeing if it would lift. At times you would see a bit of a window… [but] we needed a racetrack where we could see everything. Unfortunately that never happened. Candidly that was part of the decision. Lightning obviously forced that, but I would have anticipated shortly thereafter we probably would have had to make the call because we did not see any end in sight to the fog at that point.(NASCAR)(8-2-2016)
  • Earnhardt, Jr believes concussion happened at Michigan: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. said his doctors believe his concussion-like symptoms started with his June 12 crash at Michigan International Speedway. “Obviously with my history of concussions, knowing the event I had in Michigan, that wreck right there is where they believe I picked up this issue,” Earnhardt said Monday night on his weekly Dale Jr. Download podcast. “I didn’t feel anything that next week. The off week, I went to Germany (on vacation), went to Sonoma, ran good, felt awesome. It was strange these symptoms came out of nowhere. But we started doing a lot of digging, and they seem to feel confident this occurred in Michigan.”
    “This is scary for me because of the way it’s been different. I’m having balance issues. I’ve never had balance issues before. The eye issues with the stability, I’ve never had that before. It started very slowly, gradually and continued to progress until it stopped and stayed where it is. I don’t know what tells me about how long this process is going to be. I felt I had a good understanding of concussions in the past, but this is certainly a new one. They all have different symptoms and own time and length of recovery is different.”(NBC Sports)(8-2-2016)
  • NASCAR takes cars back to R&D; center for evaluation: Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR’s executive vice president and chief racing development officer, revealed Monday at Pocono Raceway that six cars were going to NASCAR R&D; for inspection this week, providing the sanctioning body the chance to perform midseason evaluations to aerodynamics and the engines. The six cars selected from the Pennsylvania 400, which was won by Chris Buescher, represent two each from the three OEMs: The #2 (Brad Keselowski) and #16 (Greg Biffle) from the Ford camp, the #11 (Denny Hamlin) and #18 (Kyle Busch) for Toyota and the #4 (Kevin Harvick) and #5 (Kasey Kahne) for Chevrolet. Typically, NASCAR brings two or three cars to its R&D; Center in Concord, North Carolina, for weekly inspections.(NASCAR.com)(8-2-2016)
  • Gordon unsure what caused seat belt problems: Jeff Gordon was looking for a good finish in the Pennsylvania 400 subbing for Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the #88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet when his day came undone. Literally. Gordon had overcome a pit-road speeding penalty at Pocono Raceway and was restarting in seventh-place on Lap 110 when he had an extremely unusual problem: His right-side seat belt came undone in the cockpit of his racecar. With no choice other than to slow way down to fix the problem, Gordon fell all the way from seventh back to 27th as he reached around to connect the errant belts in his car. And that’s where he finished.
    “It’s the first time I’ve ever had that happen with this type of mechanism where you just plug it in and it latches,” said Gordon. “I thought I had it latched because it happened actually on pit road one time,” said Gordon. “And I got it latched and lost some time. And then we were in a pretty good position on the restart and went to take off and as soon as I went into second (gear) and third, just that little bit of a side movement just pulled it out. It would go in and sort of latch, but when you wiggled it from left to right, it would pop right out.”
    “I knew I couldn’t go down into Turn 1 on these crazy restarts without a right-side seat belt,” said Gordon. “So, I came in under that stop. We worked on it and now it’s good. I have no clue. It’s unfortunate.”(Fox Sports)(8-2-2016)
  • Lug nut dooms Truex, Jr at Pocono again: Martin Truex Jr. called it “crazy bad luck.” The Furniture Row Racing driver was referring to a peculiar incident that short-circuited his performance in Monday’s rain-delayed and rain-shortened Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway. Truex, who started the 138 lapper from the pole, was owning the race early, leading the first 16 laps to raise his season laps led total to 1,005. But following a Lap-15 competition caution and a two-tire pit stop, trouble struck Truex’s #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Toyota, which posted an unsettling 38th-place finish in the Pennsylvania 400.
    As Truex was coming off of Turn 2, his right-front tire blew, sending him into the wall, resulting in heavy damage to his car. What caused the tire to go flat on Truex’s Toyota early in the race was an oddity to say the least. A lug nut that came off the old set of tires bounced off the ground, flew through one of the wheel holes, then lodged between the caliper and the wheel, knocking off the tire’s inner stem valve.
    Truex suffered a similar fate at the June race in Pocono. Following a pit stop on Lap 118 his right-rear tire blew as a result of a flying lug nut that got stuck behind the wheel, which eventually sheared off the inner stem valve. “I think it’s weird to have a lug nut get stuck behind a wheel, but even more weird that it happened both times at Pocono this season,” said Truex. “I don’t have an explanation. I’m just calling it bad luck.”(Furniture Row Racing)(8-2-2016)
  • Kurt Busch trying to set record for running all laps UPDATE: #41-Kurt Busch seeks to do something this weekend that hasn’t been done in NASCAR. Run every lap for the most consecutive races to start a season. Busch enters Sunday’s race at Pocono Raceway on NBCSN having completed all 5,673 laps in the first 20 races. No driver has completed every lap through the the first 21 Cup races in a season. Busch tied Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the record this past weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway when Busch completed every lap on the way to finishing 16th. Earnhardt set the mark in 2012 by completing every lap in the first 20 races of the season. In the 21st race, which was at Pocono, Earnhardt fell 18 laps short of the distance in the rain-shortened race. Busch’s consistency this season has led to 15 top-10 finishes, second only to Stewart-Haas Racing teammate Kevin Harvick, who has 16. #2-Brad Keselowski has run all but 8 laps this season.(NBC Sports)(7-28-2016)
    UPDATE: Busch completed all 138 laps on Monday at Pocono Speedway. He has now completed every lap in the first 21 race.(8-2-2016)
  • Buescher was an historical longshot win: The fog rolled into Pocono Raceway hard Monday during the Pennsylvania 400 and when visibility became a problem, NASCAR brought out the caution flag on lap 133. Rookie Chris Buescher, after a series of pit stops happened to be the leader when the yellow flag came out. And then the red flag appeared with only 22 laps remaining, giving him some hope as he was close to running out of fuel. When the fog didn’t lift and another storm-front ran through the area, NASCAR called the race official giving Buescher his first career Sprint Cup win. His 1,000-to-1 odds to win before the race make him the longest shot to ever win a NASCAR race in Las Vegas sports book history.(Roberts NASCAR Notes)(8-2-2016)
  • Pocono Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 2016 Pennsylvania 400: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Monday’s race. Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 11:50 AM, and stopped at the red flag for a rain/fog delay at 3:20 PM (all times are EDT). NBCSN was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 119
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 46
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 96
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 44
    Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 23
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 21
    Number of times NBCSN utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 4
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast: 99
    Total number of companies or entities advertised in brief promos or crawlers: 20
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 3 min. 25 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 11:50AM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 3:20 PM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 210
    Minutes of race broadcast: 170
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 40
    Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 9
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of ‘mystery cautions’ (debris not shown): 0
    Total race brdcst time 170 Total comm. brdcst time 40
    See past races, more info on the commercials with links at CawsnJaws.com.(8-2-2016)
  • Sieg adds Midstate Basement Authorities for Watkins Glen: RSS Racing is pleased to welcome Midstate Basement Authorities as the primary sponsor for Ryan Sieg for the NASCAR XFINITY race at Watkins Glen. Midstate Basement Authorities, located in Ithaca, New York, is the area’s leading foundation contractor specializing in basement waterproofing, crawl space encapsulation and foundation concrete repair.Sieg continues to hold down the 11th spot in the XFINITY Chase standings as the series makes three stops at road courses in the month of August. Sieg has completed a remarkable 99% of the laps run in the XFINITY Series, fourth best of all drivers in the XFINITY Series.(RSS Racing), see an image of the car on the #39 team paint schemes page.(8-2-2016)
  • Hermie Sadler driving two races for TriStar: Emporia, VA native, Hermie Sadler joins TriStar Motorsports as the driver of the #14 Virginia Lottery Toyota for the Bristol and Richmond NASCAR XFINITY Series races. Having established a 20 plus year relationship with Sadler, the Virginia Lottery will serve as the primary sponsor of the #14, along with associate sponsors Goldspeed USA/Maxxis and The Mid Atlantic Dirt Series. A veteran in the sport, Sadler has been competing in NASCAR since his debut in 1993. In that year, he earned the NASCAR XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year Title and is currently a NASCAR analyst on FOX. “My relationship with the Virginia Lottery and its NASCAR fans are one of the things I am most proud of in my career,” stated Hermie Sadler. “To represent them for this long, both on and off the track is a tremendous honor. We have provided some lucky fans some once-in-a-lifetime opportunities, and I look forward to doing that again this year.” As part of the sponsorship marketing campaign, Hermie and the Virginia Lottery will host some lucky winners on VIP weekends in Las Vegas, Nevada and Homestead-Miami, Florida.(TriStar Motorsports)(8-2-2016)
  • Bowyer, Bubba to Wave Green Flag on Fall Season at Free Fan Event: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Clint Bowyer, XFINITY Series driver Darrell “Bubba” Wallace Jr. and Charlotte Motor Speedway officials will wave the green flag on the speedway’s action-packed fall Season of Speed during the eighth annual Parade of Power on Wednesday, Aug. 3. The parade is scheduled to start at noon and arrive at Charlotte Motor Speedway about 12:15pm/et. The Q&A; session and autograph session will follow. Wristbands for the autograph session can be picked up beginning at 8:00am/et from the information booth at the Avenue of Flags. Vehicles representing those that will compete this fall at Charlotte Motor Speedway will parade down Bruton Smith Boulevard, from Concord Mills Mall to the speedway’s Avenue of Flags. The free fan event will include a driver Q&A; session and special ticket offers, the Charlotte Motor Speedway Fan Van and more. The first 100 fans to pick up a wristband beginning at 8 a.m. on event day will be able to take part in an autograph session with Bowyer, Wallace and other motorsports personalities. The parade will feature more than two dozen vehicles, including NASCAR stock cars, a World of Outlaws dirt late model, an MXGP dirt bike, NHRA dragsters and Pro Modified cars, a Legend Car and Bandolero, speedway Toyota Camry pace cars, the speedway’s Rosenbauer fire engine, classic and luxury automobiles and more.(CMS)(8-2-2016)
  • Barry Williams to sing National Anthem at Darlington: Barry Williams, the 1970’s television star who most famously played Greg Brady in the hit series The Brady Bunch, will join Darlington Raceway’s throwback celebration on Labor Day weekend. Williams, who currently stars in the 70s Music Celebration! in Branson, MO., will perform the National Anthem live on NBC for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 on Sept. 4. Williams has had an extensive career, starring in hundreds of productions in television, movies, and Broadway. He made appearances in several Television shows including Dragnet, Adam-12, It Takes a Thief, The Invaders, That Girl, Mission: Impossible, The Mod Squad and Here Comes the Brides before landing his role as Greg Brady on The Brady Bunch. For his role as Greg Brady, he won the Young Artist Foundation Former Child Star “Lifetime Achievement Award” in 1989. The 70s Music Celebration! is an award-winning variety show that is one of Branson’s most popular in 2016. Williams’ anthem performance adds yet another element to already exciting pre-race festivities celebrating the 1975-84 era of the sport. He will join legendary rock band KANSAS, who will be performing the pre-race concert for the 67th running of the Bojangles’ Southern 500.(Darlington Raceway)(8-2-2016)
  • Chase Rice to perform the pre-race concert at Chicago: Ccountry music singer and songwriter Chase Rice will perform the pre-race concert for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400, the first race in the Chase for The NASCAR Sprint Cup on Sunday, Sept. 18. Florida-born and North Carolina-raised, Rice played football on scholarship at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and worked on a NASCAR pit crew before moving to Nashville to pursue his career in music. Rice recently released “Everybody We Know Does,” the first single from his highly anticipated, as-yet-untitled new album. His most recent RIAA Gold-certified album, Ignite the Night, debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart and yielded a pair of Top 5 singles with the Platinum-certified “Ready Set Roll” and “Gonna Wanna Tonight.” A dynamic artist and entertainer, Rice has toured with country music superstar Kenny Chesney and Dierks Bentley and will launch his fifth headlining tour, the Everybody We Know Does Tour, this fall. Special packages are available for Rice’s biggest fans, including a $99 ticket upgrade which guarantees a place in the front row for the concert and also includes a Fan Zone Pit Pass (grandstand ticket not included). The Fan Zone Pit Pass is required to enter the infield for the concert. For $75, fans can purchase a grandstand ticket and Fan Zone Pit Pass, which puts them in close proximity to the concert and provides access to driver introductions, a red carpet walk and the Infield Fan Zone. All fans with grandstand tickets will have the ability to view the concert from their grandstand seat.(Chicagoland Speedway)(8-2-2016)


    News from August 1, 2016


     

  • Chris Buescher wins at Pocono: #34-Chris Buescher won the rain-delayed Pennsylvania 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway for his 1st win of the season, 1st win at Pocono, and 1st career win. This is the second win for Front Row Racing. The race was called with 22 laps remaining after fog rolled into the track that made it impossible to continue. Buescher had stayed out under green and was in the lead when the caution fell with 28 laps to go. He led 12 of the 138 laps. The race was red flagged for more than an hour before the race was called.
    The race was run on Monday after rain postponed it Sunday.
    #2-Keselowski finished 2nd followed by #7-Smith, #4-Harvick, #14-Stewart, #42-Larson, #11-Hamlin, #19-Edwards, #18-Busch, and #41-Busch.
    Pole sitter, #78-Truex, Jr. hit the wall early in the race after a tire went down from a broken valve stem. He finished 38th.
    Jeff Gordon, subbing for #88-Earnhardt, Jr., finished 27th.
    There were 19 lead changes among 11 drivers and 7 cautions for 31 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 127.581 mph.
    Scheduled Race Re-Air: None
    See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and more [NOTE: money/winnings are no longer reported] at:
    Unofficial Race Results page (pdf)
    Lap Summary Report (pdf)
    Penalty Report (pdf)
    Pit Stop Times (pdf)
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Pocono Race & Points Report (pdf).(8-1-2016)
  • Race Fast Facts – Pocono Raceway:
    Chris Buescher won the 43rd Annual Pennsylvania 400, his first victory in 27 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in 2016.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in two races at Pocono Raceway.
    Brad Keselowski (second) posted his seventh top-10 finish in 14 races at Pocono Raceway. It is his 13th top-10 finish in 2016.
    Regan Smith (third) posted his second top-10 finish in 11 races at Pocono Raceway.
    Chris Buescher (first) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Kevin Harvick leads the point standings by 22 points over Brad Keselowski.
    Buescher is the first Sunoco Rookie of the Year contender to win a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race since Joey Logano in 2009.
    Buescher’s win is the second NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win for Front Row Motorsports – the first was with driver David Ragan at Talladega in 2013.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(8-1-2016)
  • 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup CHASE Standings:
    [after Pocono, race 21 of 36, 16 drivers for the Chase]
    Set by most wins, then by points standing
    1) #2-Keselowski [4 wins], 2nd in driver points
    2) #18-Busch [4], 4th in driver points
    3) #19-Edwards [2], 5th
    4) #48-Johnson [2], 7th
    5) #20-Kenseth [2], 10th
    6) #4-Harvick [1], 1st
    7) #41-Busch [1], 3rd
    8) #22-Logano [1], 6th
    9) #78-Truex, Jr. [1], 8th
    10) #11-Hamlin [1], 9th
    11) #14-Stewart [1], 27th
    no wins, in by drivers points standings
    12) #3-Dillon, 11th in drivers points, 61 ahead of 17th
    13) #31-Newman, 12th, +49
    14) #24-Elliott, 13th, +45
    15) #1-McMurray, 14th, +29
    16) #42-Larson, 15th, +20
    has a win, but not in top-30
    #34-Buescher, 31st in points, 281, 6 pts behind 30th
    no wins, not in the Chase
    17) #5-Kahne, 16th, -20 pts
    18) #6-Bayne, 17th, -28 pts
    19) #21-Blaney, 18th, -28 pts
    20) #17-Stenhouse, Jr., 19th, -36pts
    21) #88-Earnhardt Jr., 20th, -47
    (8-1-2016)
  • 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Driver Points (not CHASE) Standings:
    [after Pocono, race 21 of 36]
    1) #4-Harvick [1 win], 709
    2) #2-Keselowski [4], 687, -22
    3) #41-Busch [1], 658, -51
    4) #18-Busch, [4], 634, -75
    5) #19-Edwards [2], 626, -83
    6) #22-Logano [1], 612, -97
    7) #48-Johnson [2], 577, -132
    8) #78-Truex Jr. [1], 577, -132
    9) #11-Hamlin, 576, -133
    10) #20-Kenseth [2], 569, -140
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and
    Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf)
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Pocono Race & Points Report (pdf).
  • Monday forecast at Pocono: The weather forecast for Monday at Pocono Raceway calls for the possibility of more rain, although primarily in the afternoon. According to the National Weather Service:
    Monday – A chance of showers, with thunderstorms also possible after noon. Some of the storms could produce heavy rain. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 76. Light and variable wind becoming southeast around 6 mph in the morning. Chance of precipitation is 40%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms..
    According to NASCAR_WXMAN‘s forecast at SB Nation, “Unfortunately for NASCAR the same weather pattern that kept Pocono wet on Sunday could bring more rain to the region on Monday. The earlier start time for the race (11:00am/et) should help NASCAR avoid some of the weather. That’s if we don’t have too much of an issue with fog, mist and morning rain. The odds of starting Monday’s Pennsylvania 400 and making it official (at least halfway) is around 55 to 65 percent. Widespread scattered showers and storms are possible as we head into the afternoon on Monday. That is why my focus is getting to halfway then any laps after that in my opinion are bonus. Odds of getting a complete race in at Pocono Raceway on Monday is between 40 to 50 percent.”
    For more weather links, see the Pocono race page – weather section.(8-11-2016)
  • Second Furniture Row team next year with Erik Jones? UPDATE: Fox Sports’ Kaitlyn Vincie reported on NASCAR Race Day Sunday morning that Furniture Row Racing is close to adding a second team next year. She says she spoke with Furniture Row Racing General Manager Joe Garone and he said the pieces were coming together but nothing is confirmed. Regarding speculation that Erik Jones would be the driver, he said Jones would be a good fit for the team but nothing is finalized. The second team would be headquartered in Denver, Colorado with the #78 team of Martin Truex, Jr.(7-31-2016)
    UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing’s alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing continues to bear fruit. An announcement planned Tuesday is expected to bring the small NASCAR team to a new level. Erik Jones could be part of the news. Reports surfaced Sunday that Jones might be getting the second Furniture Row full-time car. This season is Furniture Row’s first as a Toyota team, leaving Chevy for technical assistance from Gibbs. Week after week, Truex showed himself to be a competitor as a de facto fifth Gibbs driver. No other alliance has been so successful in Cup racing. Jones is ready for Sprint Cup. Just 20 and boyish of face, he won the Truck Series championship last season. He won his third Xfinity race of the season on Saturday at Iowa. His victory total this season might be higher had Kyle Busch not stepped down to win seven times. Sunday, a second Furniture Row car was still a rumor. So was the selection of Jones. Suarez also is an option. Another question to be answered: Will the second FRR car carry a charter or race each week without one? Expect that to be decided in the offseason.(Sporting News)(8-1-2016)
  • Pocono is first track to have two rainouts in the same year: Pocono Raceway made history in 2016 in a way that no track would ever want to make it. For the first time in NASCAR history, a track had both of its races postponed. For a track that saw Dale Earnhardt Jr. sweep both of its races in 2014 (a track promoter’s and many fans’ dream), it got the promoter’s and fans’ bad dream in 2016. “It’s awful luck,” said Pocono Raceway president Brandon Igdalsky after the rainout. “Kyle Busch gets the great [pole/race sweep] record last week and we get the awful record this week — way to go, good for us. At the end of the day, I literally feel so awful for the fans that were here. We had a great crowd. I just hope they all come back [Monday].” Pocono, while having a little bit of a rap for bad weather, did not have a rainout since August 2009 before this June’s race was postponed for a day.
    What could make matters worse for Pocono races in the future are the 3:00pm/et starts for the races at the track next year. The race was postponed Sunday at 2:43 p.m. ET because it had taken three hours to dry the track earlier. With sunset at about 8:20pm, there wasn’t enough time to dry the track and get it started — NASCAR’s policy is not to start a race that it couldn’t reasonably get the full race (about three hours) in as long as it didn’t rain. With the 3:00pm starts next year in hopes of attracting a bigger television audience, any rain delay could result in a rain-shortened race or postponed race.
    “At least with the 3 o’clock start, we’re going to know early if we’re not going to get the track dry,” Igdalsky said. “That’s the good thing about it. I’m curious to see how the 3 o’clock is going to work out. I’ve got my feelings both ways on that one. I agree to an extent, and I disagree to an extent. … I was a little bit hesitant towards it but we’ll see what it means. Our fans have been right down the middle.”(ESPN.com)(8-1-2016)