December 1998 News Archives


  • (12-31-98)

  • Morgan-McClure 2nd Team? UPDATE 4 Hey, a wild one – hear that a second Morgan-McClure team effort is may still happen in 1999. The sponsor rumored is Microsoft. No word on a driver yet.(11-18-98) — Hearing the 2nd Morgan-McClure team is close to fruition and we may hear something next week — during an interview with Larry McClure by WC Today Radio, McClure said they would run a 2nd team on a limited basis only if a sponsor is found and only for 5-6 races on 1999 with an eye towards 2000 with a full-time schedule(12-22-98) — I hear the team will attempt the Daytona 500 with an yet unnamed driver and possibly up to 15 1999 starts(12-29-98) — The Microsoft rumor have proven to be false and they will not be the sponsor of the 2nd team, if it happens(12-31-98)

  • #98 Sponsor?/Driver? UPDATE 6 Sue’s ADNASCAR Daily Newsletter reports that on Monday(todau) there might be an announcement by Cale Yarborough regarding a driver and sponsor(12-21-98) — Sue reports that she hears the announcement will not happen until next week(if it happens) — and now I hear, get this, that Rick Mast may be the driver — I hear Mast has signed with the #98. Rumored sponsors include RCA(yes again) and Lucent. Othered rumored drivers include Jeff Green(who has a full time BGN ride) and Steve Grissom(rumored to the #74 BGN BACE team)(12-23-98) — Rick Mast has signed as the driver, Waddell Wilson will be the Team Manager, and Yarborough has gotten some investors. An announcement could come this week about a sponsor(WC Today Radio)(12-28-98) — Story on NASCAR Online today – Mast, Wilson to lead Yarborough team, mentions the team will be at the second Daytona test for Ford cars on Jan. 12-13 and no sponsorship announcement yet(12-30-98)

  • #81 Back? UPDATE 4 I hear that Gil Martin, crew chief for the #93 Amoco Bill Davis Racing BGN Pontiac and co-owner of the #81 with Filbert Martocci, are close to reaching a settlement with Martocci to keep the team going in 1999 with a sponsor-driver package that Martin brought to the table. The deal would retain Martin as a part-owner with a new ownership group but he will remain as the central figure(crew chief) in Dave Blaney’s program at Bill Davis Racing next season and beyond(unnamed source) — The team has been sold to Pinnacle(sp?) Motorsports, one owner is Mark Collins. Sponsorship and driver announcement on Friday.(NASCAR Today Radio), one possibility I hear is Morgan Shepherd(12-15-98) — No announcement today from what I have seen/heard(12-18-98) — I hear Skip Eyler, former #97 Crew Chief will handle those duties with the team(12-30-98) — “In a deal pieced together by driver Morgan Shepherd, the Pinnacle Motorsports Group bought the team. Shepherd came to the group with a sponsor and the idea. He had originally considered owning a team, but decided the dual role was too complicated. Martocci will remain with the team through this season as a minority interest holder. Shepherd will drive the car and Skip Eyler, formerly of Roush Racing, will be the crew chief. Everything seemed perfect until earlier this week. Then, the sponsor — an insurance group that has signed a four-year contract with Shepherd — told the owners it wants to wait another season to start on the Winston Cup circuit. The decision shocked the group. Mark Collins, president and CEO of Pinnacle Motorsports Group, said the sponsor approached Shepherd earlier this year after conducting demographic studies of its target markets. The studies showed Shepherd best fit the profile of prospective insurance buyers. So the company went to the driver and convinced him to sign the contract. Now, it may take a court action to force the sponsor to honor the contract. Even if it does bail out for a season, Collins said the team plans to try to run. Collins said they will definitely run in Daytona, sponsor or not.”(Times-Dispatch Article)(12-31-98)


  • #13 News: Dick Trickle will drive the #13 in the Pre-Shootout and also attempt to qualify for the Daytona 500. No sponsor named yet. Disregard all that other #13 stuff from the last few weeks, drove me crazy(crazier?)(12-30-98)

  • Marcis to test: Dave Marcis will sub for Mike Skinner at Daytona next week in the #31 Lowes Chevy. Skinner is recovering from knee surgury during the offseason(NASCAR Online)(12-30-98)
  • Pennzoil Stuff: Thought this PR was pretty interesting – Pennzoil’s sponsorship of a NASCAR, NHRA, Indy Racing League or World of Outlaw car means more than just painting the race car bright yellow and providing the driver with a uniform. The following is a list documenting just some of the items Pennzoil distributed to fans, customers, and employees during the 1998 racing season. Pennzoil sponsorship is visible in nearly every major racing series in America. Items Distributed In 1998: Pennzoil Hats 45,922; Driver Autograph Cards 1,402,750; Racing Schedules 186,500; Pennzoil Oval Stickers 715,610; Pennzoil Cameras 4,238; Pennzoil Tote Bags 940; Pennzoil Barrel Covers 7,236; Pennzoil Press Kit Folders 2,110; Cardboard Standups 627; Pennzoil Umbrellas 516; Pennzoil Koozies 520; Pennzoil Racing Banners 6,406; Pennzoil Seat Cushions 4,142; Yellow Carrying Bags 496,260; Pennant Stringers 70,000; Pennzoil Ear Plugs 5,945; Pennzoil Key Chains 35,338; Pennzoil Team Posters 269,375(12-30-98)

  • Sad News: Lloyd “Shorty” Rollins, the first NASCAR Rookie of the Year, has died at a local hospital after a brief illness. Rollins, the circuit’s top rookie in 1958, died Monday at age 69, a day after lapsing into a coma from complications of a heart ailment. In 1959, Rollins won the first stock car race at the new Daytona International Speedway. See the AP story at That’s Racin’ Former NASCAR driver Rollins dies(12-30-98)


  • 2nd Elliott Team/ yet another UPDATE 4: A week ago I mentioned the #13 team would race at the Bud-Shootout Qualifying race with Dennis Setzer driving. Actually it’ll be the #89 team and they will do 3-4 other races with special McDonald’s promotions of some sort. The #13 will not race in 1999, but may return in 2000.(12-18-98) — but….sources close to Bill Elliott’s #13 team have acknowledged that Rick Mast will pilot their Ford in the Bud Shootout and also attempt to qualify for the Daytona 500. No sponsor has been secured yet.(12-22-98) — YES – this means the #13 and #89 will both attempt Daytona — I hear Mast has signed with the #98 and will not drive the #13(12-23-98) — I hear the #13 team still plans to attempt the Daytona 500, Greg Sacks MAY be a possibility(12-29-98)


  • Premiere Motorsports UPDATE 2: Wake County businessman Steve Husketh plans to start the area’s first NASCAR team by building a 42,000-square-foot complex in Chatham County(Pittsboro,NC) to house racing operations. Husketh, chairman of an auto-racing merchandising company and owner of six brake, tire and inspection shops in North Carolina, is the sole investor in a venture he estimates will cost about $2.5 million before the team tries to qualify for its first race. This story was first mentioned on this site on May 13th(Triangle businessman gears up NASCAR team – link good)(5-13-98), I have heard that the team will be called Premiere Motorsports – Steve Husketh owner – driver and sponsor yet to be named as the team is still actively looking for sponsors.(9-7-98) — I hear Premiere Motorsports, owned by Steve Husketh will run the BGN series in 1999 with Slim Jim All Pro Champion Freddie Querry as the driver. The team will use Ford’s and the shop is still being built in Pittsboro, NC. Cars are now being built in a temp Charlotte shop. They may attempt a few Cup races later in the season(12-28-98)
  • NASCAR Rugs: Capel Rugs and NASCAR could be a winner, I hear the NASCAR driver mentioned is Shawna Robinson and plans may be for her to run a few BGN events in 1999(The Business Journal of Greater Triad)(12-28-98)

  • More night races planned during 2000 NASCAR season? Nighttime running lights installed at the Daytona International Speedway cost $5 million, but International Speedway Corp. apparently believes it was worth the cost: The success of October’s Pepsi 400 — the first-ever to be held at night — has prompted speedway officials to plan more night races during the 2000 NASCAR season. In fact, all of the scheduled February Speedweek races(in 2000) are being considered for night races — except the venerable Daytona 500. See the stories at Orlando Business Journal and the Orlando Sentinel(12-28-98)



  • WCW to Sponsor Cup team? UPDATE DOH! WCW has announced that they’ll be sponsoring a NASCAR Winston Cup team for selected events in 1999. Therefore, Racing Champions, who made the die-cast WCW model racing cars this past year, will become the exclusive trackside merchandiser of WCW products including T-shirts, souvenirs and collectibles at NASCAR events. This info comes from the wrestling site: Scoopscentral. It does not mention a team.(thanks Jeff)(12-23-98) — was in ‘wrapping’ mode last night and this didn’t click, this is probably the #9 Melling Cartoon car deal with Turner which includes the Cartoon Netweok, WCW, etc.(12-24-98)


  • #75 Team: On Saturday(12-19), Ted Musgrave, Butch Mock, and crew posed for the array of photographs which help kick off a new team and season. The primary shot was for the popular race cards which Ted will be autographing in 1999. See the images at Ted Musgrave Fan Page(12-21-98)

  • Ron Fellows/Nemechek UPDATE: Ron Fellows’ will be a semi-regular on both the BGN and CTS in 1999. Joe Nemechek, who will drive for SABCO racing next year, has contracted Fellows to drive about 12 races for him in 1999 including the Winston Cup event at Watkins Glen, which has become a favorite track for the Canadian(TSN Motorsports)(12-18-98) — NASCAR Online reports that as of now, Fellows is contracted to run the BGN race at Watkins Glen and four truck races with AER Manufacturing as the sponsor. Fellows schedule could expand if he finds additional sponorship, which he feels confident about. Nemechek will run 13 BGN events in 1999 in the #87 Chevy. No mention of a Cup race at all in the story.(NASCAR Online)(12-21-98)

  • Buckshot Hitched: Buckshot Jones got married on Saturday – Check it out at


  • NASCAR Rules for 1999: Per last weeks Winston Cup Scene – It appears the larger size spoliers used at Atlanta and Japan will be used in 1999. The exact size of the spoliers has not been determined yetThe proposed rule that would limit the number of crew a team can take to the track has been shelved until 2000 but NASCAR still favors imposing some sort of limit in the future, enforcing it will be the problem(12-20-98)

  • Heavenly Bodies Tim Weaver, owner of Heavenly Bodies, has broken ground on a new 3,200-sq. ft. facility in Statesville, N.C., which will house his racing sheetmetal hanging and fabrication business. The new shop will allow Heavenly Bodies to better accommodate its customers, including Butch Mock Motorsports and Elliott Racing. Prior to opening Heavenly Bodies, Weaver worked for Geoff Bodine Racing, Doug Taylor Motorsports and J&J Racing. Weaver relocated from western N.Y. to North Carolina in 1994 following a successful NASCAR Winston Racing Series career in the Late Model Stock division at Holland (N.Y.) Speedway.(Tim Weaver/John Bisci PR)(12-20-98)


  • ESPY’s: Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt and, Mark Martin, have been nominated to receive 1999 ESPY Awards. The winners of the 1999 ESPY Awards — given by ESPN for a variety of sports-related categories — will be announced at 8pm/et Feb. 15 on ESPN. Gordon, has been nominated for three separate awards: Male Athlete of the Year, Showstopper of the Year and Auto Racing Performer of the Year. In the first category, Gordon will go up against baseball sluggers Mark McGuire and Sammy Sosa and NBA star Michael Jordan. Gordon and Martin, both received nominations for Auto Racing Performer of the Year. Earnhardt received an ESPY nomination for Dramatic Individual Performance of the Year by winning his first Daytona 500 in February. Earnhardt will go up against baseball stars David Wells and Kerry Wood and college running back Ricky Williams, this year’s Heisman Trophy winner(That’s Racin’)(12-19-98)


  • Slugger back: Richard ‘Slugger’ Labbe has returned to Hendrick Motorsports. Last Monday Labbe was hired as chief mechanic for the #25 Budweiser team and driver Wally Dallenbach(Marty’s Two Cents-MRN)(12-18-98)
  • #28 Team Moves: The RYR #28 Texaco team will be moving closer to the Charlotte Motor Speedway. After considering several places team owner Robert Yates has settled on buying Stacey Compton’s old NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series shop. The shop has a total of 12,000 square feet, which will provide room for about eight cars one team member estimates. The shop does not have a paint booth so the team will have to send cars down I-85 to the main Yates shop to have any repair work or painting done(Marty’s Two Cents-MRN)(12-18-98)

  • Irvan/Simo to Cup/BGN? YEP UPDATE 2: I am hearing that in a unique marketing move, Federated Auto Parts will campaign in three NASCAR venues in 1999. The Staunton, Va based sponsor announced today that they will enter 8 Cup, 3 BGN and 6 Craftsman Truck races for next year in addition to sponsoring the truck race at Nashville for the fourth year. Truck driver Boris Said will compete in 3 truck races and 2 Cup races, all road course venues. Ernie Irvan will handle the driving chores in 3 BGN and 3 CTS. The rest of the oval Cup race driver duties will be decided shortly. The big picture here is to get set up for a possible full-time Cup effort in perhaps…2000(Racin’ with Russ), this means they will not race a full truck schedule in 1999 and I am not looking to speculate what Irvan’s plans are for 2000.(12-16-98) — Complete story at NASCAR Online: Irvan-Simo Racing branches out. Ok folks, keep this straight — Ernie Irvan will run three BGN races in a Chevy: Michigan, Dover and Richmond(spring events). Irvan will also run truck races at Martinsville, Richmond and possibly Fontana. Irvan-Simo will run eight Cup events, with Boris Said driving a Ford at Sears Point and Watlins Glen and possibly Texas. The driver for the other five events at Fontana, Indy, NHIS, Charlotte and Homestead is not known at present. Said would also drive the Ford truck at Portland, Heartland Park(KS), Nashville and Fontana. Jerry Baxter will be the crew cheif for the Cup and Truck events, no crew chief named for the BGN effort. Have heard no car or truck #’s mentioned. I assume the #28 or #44 will be used in the trucks. All teams sponsored by Federated Auto Parts(no news on the site about this yet)(12-17-98) — Irvan will run the three BGN events in a Pontiac supplied by Hensley Motorsports(WC Today)(12-18-98)

  • Irvan/Simo Rolex 24: I hear the entry list for the Daytona Rolex 24 Hour Race has Ernie Irvan listed as a driver along with Boris Said, Mark and Brian Simo in one of the GT3 BMWs campaigned by Prototype Technology Group and Yokohama. Car #6.(12-18-98)


  • More Mike Harmon info: In a Birmingham News story – Birmingport’s Harmon will drive Donlavey’s Ford(12-17-98)

  • Junie announcement UPDATE 3 Big Daddy’s! and driver: Long-time car Cup owner Junie Donlavey(#90 Ford) has a press conference scheduled for noon Wednesday in Richmond to announce his plans for the 1999 Winston Cup season(That’s Racin’) — Donlavey said Dick Trickle would not return as his driver. Should the sponsorship deal go through Tuesday night, Donlavey said it would be a different driver, one that hasn’t participated in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series on a regular basis previously. It would be a full-year deal with a rookie driver. Donlavey said he has not named a crew chief for the team as of yet. If and when the sponsorship deal is finalized, he said, he’ll concentrate on that(NASCAR Online) — Veteran NASCAR Winston Cup car owner Junie Donlavey is expected to announce a new primary sponsor — Big Daddy’s — at a press conference to be held Wednesday in Richmond, VA. Big Daddy’s is a major producer of Bar-B-Que(and an advertiser of this site) sauce, spices and meat products. Motorsports has also learned the team will make a surprise driver announcement naming short-track veteran Mike Harmon as the pilot of the #90 Ford Taurus(TNN’s Motorsports Site)(12-15-98) — It’s official, see NASCAR Online at Big Daddy’s backing Donlavey in 50th year, by the way Harmon is Junie’s 68th driver in the Cup series.(12-16-98) — see an update on this story at the Times-Dispatch: Big Daddy’s signs on with Donlavey’s team(12-17-98)


  • Who is Mike Harmon? Mike Harmon will drive the Winston Cup car in 1999 for Richmond-based NASCAR owner Junie Donlavey. OK, that’s great but….who is he and what has he done? From the Times-Dispatchstory today – Harmon, who turns 41 in January, spent the past seven seasons competing in NASCAR All Pro Series, BGN and short-track races. He ran 11 All Pro races in 1998 and a full schedule in 1997. He will be a candidate for 1999 Winston Cup rookie of the year. Harmon approached Donlavey in July and hammered out his deal with a sponsor earlier this month. Harmon learned the sport at the Fairgrounds Raceway in Birmingham, AL, the track that produced NASCAR standouts Bobby Allison, Davey Allison, Neil Bonnett and Red Farmer. He won a pair of track championships there and one at the Heart of Dixie track, also in Alabama. The Birmingport native has always run cars out of his hometown shop. Harmon posted one top-five and two top-10 finishes on the All-Pro circuit last season. In 1997, he closed the season fifth in points with nine top five finishes. He ran seven BGN races in a row in 1996 before his sponsor bailed out of the deal and ended his season prematurely.(Times-Dispatch/TNN), also found a page about Harmon at the Unofficial Birmingham International Raceway Site: Mike Harmon, no stats, but an images and a story.(12-16-98)


  • #75 Crew Chief: Jon Wolfe has been named the crew chief of the #75 Remington Ford owned by Butch Mock. Troy Selberg was named the Team Mgr a few months ago. Wolfe comes from the Joe Gibbs Racing team where he was the assistant crew chief to Jimmy Makar(WC Today Radio)(12-15-98)

  • Bessey/Bodine/PowerTeam UPDATE 4: I hear that Joe Bessey is going to operate a Cup team and Geoff Bodine will drive for him in the # 60 Powerteam WC Chevy for the 1999 season. Joe Bessey will continue to drive the #6 Powerteam Chevy in the BGN in 1999. I also hear they signed the deal on Wednesday(12-12-98) — The team has bought the #96 Buzz McCall equipment and will work out of the old #96 shop, I also hear their will be an announcement on TNN’s Raceday today(11am/et) — It’s official, Geoffrey Bodine(not Geoff) will drive the #60 Power Team Chevy in 1999 and will test at Daytona in January. Jim Long, who was with the Stavola’s #8 team will be the crew chief for the team(TNN’s Raceday), good report on North East Racing(12-13-98) — In addition to Bodine’s 34-event 1999 Winston Cup campaign, the team will field a car for Bessey in five Winston Cup events next season(TNN’s Motorsports Page), no images yet but the Cup car looks the same as the BGN car but it’s #60.(12-14-98) — Check out the RPM2Nite chat with Bodine at Bodine has new name, new ride(thanks Jim)(12-15-98)


  • #33 Crew Chief UPDATE: Sammy Johns will be crew chief of the #33 Andy Petree owned Skoal Chevy and driver Kenny Schrader in 1999. Petree feels he cannot handle all the duties of being an owner and a crew chief, plus will have to watch over his new 2nd team with Kenny Wallace. Johns comes from the #96 Caterpillar team which has been widely rumored to be selling out or closing shop after the 1999 season.(in part from the JournalNow)(10-18-98) — Officially announced today, Sam Johns will bw the crew chief on the #33 Skoal Chevy driven by Ken Schrader and owned by Andy Petree(NASCAR Online)(12-14-98)


  • #13 DONE but…: This was reported in the Richmond Times today – A spokesperson at Bill Elliott Racing said the team’s second car, the No. 13 Ford Taurus, definitely would be in Daytona in February. A driver and a sponsor will be announced at a later date. FirstPlus, last year’s sponsor, is not definitely out, but the company’s financial problems could endanger the sponsorship. Although FirstPlus has reduced its workforce by 3,000, sold off its United Kingdom branch and is selling its Consumer Finance Company, the organization is listed as the sponsor of an ARCA race in Daytona(Richmond Times) but sources tell me this team is done and will NOT race at Daytona or at all in 1999(12-11-98) — but just heard that Dennis Setzer just might attempt the qualifier for the Bud Shootout, since he is eligible. FirstPlus will NOT be part of the deal. It’s in the talking stages right now(12-12-98)

  • NASCAR to Washington TODAY: Some of the most powerful and influential people in NASCAR racing have been invited to Washington D.C. in order to make a two hour presentation elaborating on the history, present success, and future goals of the organization responsible for the fastest-growing sport in North America. NASCAR’s Night at the Smithsonian will be held at the Lisner Auditorium on the campus of George Washington University on Tuesday, December 15 from 7:30-9:30pm/et. Jeff Gordon will be joined by NASCAR executives Bill and Brian France will be joined by a potent group of past and present NASCAR champions, including Richard Petty, Darrell Waltrip, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Ron Hornaday and Kyle Petty. The group will be asked several questions on the past, present and future of their sport by an emcee. The all-star panel will then respond to questions from the audience in an open-house format(Many Sources)(12-12-98)


  • Exxon/Mobil: Penske-Kranefuss Racing says the merger between Exxon and Mobil will not affect the team’s sponsorship for the 1999 season(Winston Cup Scene)(12-11-98)
  • Skinner OK: #31 Lowe Chevy driver Mike Skinner underwent a scheduled successful arthroscopic knee surgery Tuesday at North Carolina Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem. Skinner underwent the procedure as an outpatient and was in and out of the hospital Tuesday, a Lowe’s Chevrolet team spokesman said. Skinner is at home resting and is fine. Skinner’s left knee was injured in three areas, including a complete tear in the lateral meniscus, a pad of cartilage that acts as a shock absorber between the bones that connect at the knee (the femur and the tibia); a 70 percent tear in the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), which connects the femur and tibia at the center of the knee; and a partially torn articular cartilage, which covers the ends of the bones and acts as a cushion between the two. Skinner hopes to test at Daytona on the 2nd test date, Jan. 19-21(NASCAR Online)(12-11-98)

  • New RYR Crewchief: From That’s Racin’ – A source close to the situation said Robert Yates Racing will name Doug Richert as the new crew chief for the #28 Fords driven by Winston Cup 1998 rookie of the year Kenny Irwin. Irwin’s former chief, Richard “Slugger” Labbe, was released following the season finale at Atlanta. An official announcement of Richert’s hiring is expected by early next week. Richert has been the chief for Joe Falk’s #91 Chevrolets since December 1997, also in Thursday’s NASCAR Online Banquet Notebook.(12-3-98) — mentioned on Raceday(TNN), that the announcement would come early this week(12-6-98) — Officially announced in this weeks Winston Cup Scene(12-11-98)


  • TV Deals: NASCAR is studying whether to consolidate its widespread television contracts to take advantage of the sport’s surging popularity. Under the current structure, track owners sell the television rights for their own races, resulting in races during the nine-month season appearing on five broadcast and cable networks. A sixth network, NBC, will join CBS, ABC, ESPN, TNN and TBS next year, and Fox has expressed interest. See the rest of the News and Record Online story at: NASCAR considers bundling TV deals(12-10-98)
  • Gibbs to the NFL? Former Washington Redskins coach Joe Gibbs, who also owns two Cup teams and NHRA teams, has joined Phoenix businessman Sam Grossman’s bid for the Washington Redskins and their stadium, agreeing to take an ownership stake and supervisory position if Grossman is successful in acquiring the club. Grossman, a shopping center developer, reportedly will allow Gibbs to continue operating his NASCAR racing team and his motivational speaking, his two major pursuits since resigning as Redskins coach in 1993. The Washington Post said Grossman would want Gibbs to be in charge of football operations, setting long-term strategy for the club, having a voice in coaching and player personnel decisions as well as operation of the franchise’s Jack Kent Cooke Stadium(The Washington Post), also a story at RaceWire(12-10-98)


  • Cope Crew Chief: Bahari’ Racing has hired Dan Glauz as its new crew chief for driver Derrike Cope. Glauz, 39, replaces Doug Hewitt, who left at the end of the 1998 season to become Kyle Petty’s crew chief. Glauz was a crew chief for rookie Mark Krogh in the NASCAR Busch Series at the beginning of the 1998 season. He closed out the season as Bobby Hillin’s crew chief(Derrike Cope Fan Club Site, more info there)(12-9-98)
  • DW Crew Chief? UPDATE 2 Hearing JT Townsend, who has worked with Harry Gant, Ernie Irvan’s Kodak Busch and Cup deal, and has been over the fab shop at Travis Carter for 3 yrs, will be the crew chief for DW and the #66 Kmart Travis Carters team — hmm…another source says it’ll be Pete Petersen(12-8-98) — Petersen has been hired by Ricky Rudd as the Shop Foreman and will not be the crew chief. I also hear that NO decision has been made on a crew chief for the #66 team at this time(12-9-98)

  • #7 to Chevy’s UPDATE 2: I also hear that the #7 Mattei team will buy up some of the chevy’s from the SABCO left over from the #46.(11-11-98) — Jim Mattei, owner of the #7 Winston Cup car for Michael Waltrip in 1999, said the team will switch from Ford to Chevrolet and will form an alliance with Team Sabco next season(That’s Racin’)(12-8-98) — #7 team owner Jim Mattei has signed Phillips to another year of sponsorship, but the company will have less signage on the car than it did last season. The team is looking for additional sponsorship. Mattei said the team also is switching from Ford to Chevy. The change was brought on, in part, by a new joint venture with Team SABCO. The Felix Sabates-owned team ran three cars last season but lost a sponsor and plans to run two cars in 1999. Now, Sabates will work with Mattei on engines and chassis. This will allow Mattei the advantages of multicar teams without the expense(Times-Dispatch)(12-9-98)


  • #13 Back? NOPE Done UPDATE 3: I hear that the Elliott/Marino #13 Ford Team may be sponsored again by First Plus with Rick Mast as the driver for the 1999 season — also from the Times-Dispatch: The Bill Elliott/Dan Marino team is planning an announcement later this week concerning the #13 car. Rick Mast and Service Merchandise reportedly have talked with the owners at various points late in the season. — UPDATE: Sources tell me that Bill Elliott Racing is officially a ONE CAR team. First Plus could not make a commitment. Ten employees were released today. Future plans call for a two-car team again in 2000(Jayski Note: Got some complaints about the conflicting reports, sorry, put them up as I got/found them, didn’t have time to combine them)(12-2-98) — UPDATE 2: From the #13 to the #94 – Eddie D’Hondt has been named Team Manager and Tire Specialist. #13 Crew Chief Jerry Pitts will be the assistant Crew Chief and R&D Manager. Gary Putnam will be the Car Chief(12-3-98) — Just saw this on NASCAR Online: A spokesperson for Bill Elliott said the Elliott-Marino Racing team was still waiting for a definite word on the status of FIRSTPLUS Financial’s continued sponsorship of its #13 Ford Taurus. The team expects to know something, more than likely by Monday, the spokesperson said(NASCAR Online Thurs Notebook)(12-4-98) — Nope this team is done, Bill Elliott returns to a one car team in 1999(WC Today Radio)(12-8-98)
  • Bobby Allison BGN Team UPDATE: Bobby signed a 3 year contract to be the team consultant for Bobby Allison-Dave Carroll Motorsports. This team will field cars for the Busch Grand National Series for the 1998 season. The driver – Jimmy Kitchens, is a local Alabama man that Bobby thinks has a lot of potential. This team will be competing on a full schedule.( – thanks Jimmy for the heads up)(12-4-98) — the team will field Chevy’s and be sponsored by Air Jamaica Vacations(NASCAR Online)(12-8-98)


  • Snowball Derby Winner: Rich Bickle won the Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola Florida before what observers are saying ws the largest crowd ever. The top five were Rich Bickle, Gary St. Amant, Freddie Query, Bobby Gill, and Ronnie Burkett. Burkett came from 29th starting spot for the fifth place finish. look for results later at Snowball Derby News – Florida Stock Car News(12-7-98)
  • T Wayne award: The late T. Wayne Robertson, former vice president of Sports Marketing Enterprises, the sports marketing and promotions division of the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, was honored at a Friday morning breakfast by the National Motorsports Press Association with the 39th annual TOSCO 76/NMPA Myers Brothers Award. See the complete story at: 1998 NMPA Myers Brothers Award(12-7-98)


  • Morgan and the #98: Hearing that Morgan Shepherd may end up on the #98 Cale Yarborough team with a sponsor(12-6-98)


  • Snowball Derby Update: From a correspondent: There were twelve drivers there. There were only four trucks. So the drivers decided to run three heat races with the winner of each advancing to the main race. They would draw a name from the second place finishers for the other truck in the main race. They also drew for trucks. Curtis Markham drew the best truck for his heat and started on the outside pole. Markham won the heat race and went on to the feature. Also in the main race were: Rich Bickle, Red Farmer (Gary St. Amant won the heat but gave up his seat to Red), and Kerry Earnhardt. He drew the worst truck for this and Red Farmer had the best truck. They only had three trucks by now so they put Kerry Earnhardt in a Late Model Stock Car. Kerry brought out the only caution of the night by spinning out as soon as he got on the track. Farmer won the race. The drivers there: Barry Bodine, Geoff Bodine, Mike Dillon, Kerry Earnhardt, David Green, Robert Pressley, Stevie Reeves, Randy Tolsma, Jerry Nadeau, and Gary St. Amant.(no Petty’s?)(12-5-98)


  • Tyler Jet UPDATE 2: Hearing a possible sponsor for the Tyler Jet Motorsports Pontiac and driver Rich Bickle may be AT&T. Also hear the car may not carry #35 or #17 but a different # in 1999(11-30-98) — actually hear the sponsor will be Lucky Dog phone card, a division of AT&T(12-1-98) — Sources close to the situation tell goracing that AT&T, through one of its telecommunications brands, will likely sponsor the Tyler Jet Entry of owner Tim Beverly. The deal, originally offered to Buz McCall and his number 96, has some pretty strong strings attached – the major one being that there will be a three month review after which time AT&T will decide whether it is meeting its marketing goals. This has nothing at all to do with on-track performance but whether AT&T is getting its “bang for its buck”. If AT&T doesn’t believe they are getting a proper return on their investment they will pull the sponsorship at the three month mark(goracing)(12-4-98)


  • DW It’s OFFICIAL: Kmart Corp. today announced an agreement to enter the Kmart Racing Team in the 1999 Winston Cup Series with three-time NASCAR champion Darrell Waltrip driving the #66 Big Kmart Ford Taurus. See the complete story at – News, Image at NASCAR Online and on their Photo Gallery #5(12-3-98)
  • Most Popular: Bill Elliott won the National Motorsports Press Association’s most popular driver contest for the eighth consecutive year and a record 13 times overall. The NMPA, using a 900-number for voting, received nearly 40,000 votes. Elliott garnered nearly 49 percent to lead all drivers(That’s Racin’)(No idea who the other drivers were in the most popular list)(12-3-98)

  • Melling Sponsor UPDATE2: I hear the Cartoon Network will be back in a different role with the #9 Melling Ford. Supposedly will be a few paint schemes reflecting different Turner Broadcasting stations/shows, like the Cartoon Network and WCW.(11-18-98) — I hear this will be announced Thursday in NYC(12-1-98) — Cartoon Network will continue to be the primary sponsor the #9 Fords driven by Jerry Nedeau, however Turner Broadcasting sister companies TBS Superstation and World Championship Wrestling will also be used as sponsors in selected races. Each of the three divisions of Turner Broadcasting will have complete control over the car’s design and associate sponsorships for its races. The Cartoon Network will continue as the dominant sponsor for Turner Broadcasting. The Superstation’s car will feature the National League East Division champion Atlanta Braves and the TV show “Dinner & A Movie,” while WCW will use the car to promote wrestlers and pay-per-view events(That’s Racin’)(12-3-98)
  • a million bucks and… Ronald Sims is the latest winner of the Winston No Bull 5 “They Win, You Win” $1 million fan sweepstakes. Sims’ name was drawn at random from a nationwide pool of sweepstakes entrants following Jarrett’s million-dollar victory in the Winston 500 at Talladega Superspeedway.(NASCAR Online) – Winston’s No Bull 5 driver bonus program will offer $1 million to five eligible drivers should they win at five Winston Cup races next season — the Daytona 500, Las Vegas, Texas, the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte and the Winston 500 at Talladega. On Thursday, R.J. Reynolds announced a change in how money will also be awarded to eligible fans. Five fans will be chosen from a national sweepstakes before each No Bull 5 event and will be paired with one of the five eligible drivers. If one of those drivers wins the race, the fan paired with that driver will also win $1 million.(That’s Racin’)(12-3-98)

  • Evans new gig: Veteran Winston Cup engine specialist David Evans has been named chief engine builder for Larry Hedrick Motorsports and the #41 Kodiak Racing Team. Evans, a native of South Hill, VA, assumes his position immediately and will operate out of the team’s state-of-the-art engine facilities at the team shop in Statesville, NC. Evans has 46 Winston Cup wins to his credit, numerous pole positions and was named the All-Pro Engine Builder in 1988, 1989, 1993 and 1994(Muhleman Marketing via the Stock Car Magazine Site)(12-3-98)

  • Ted Musgrave News and Link: Some Official Info about Butch Mock, the #75 team and Ted at the Ted Musgrave Fan Page(12-3-98)
  • Waddell to leave? UPDATE 2 Word has Waddell Wilson, VP of Racing Operation at the #7 Mattei Motorsports team leaving at the end of the month(WC Today Radio)(12-1-98) – I hear Wilson may end up with Bill Elliott as Team Manager(12-2-98) — Wilson will NOT be with Elliott, not sure what his plans are(12-3-98)


  • The long version DW in A Ford?/Kmart/Carter UPDATE 7 or 8 but who’s counting: Hearing the second Travis Carter team(currently owns the #23 No Bull Ford) is close to becoming reality with Rick Mast as the driver. Jimmy Spencer even talked about it on the radio(Winston Cup Today Radio), I hear Peter Guild-ProMotors and Carl Haas (used to own part of the #37 now #12 team) are involved with Kmart to sponsor.(11-5-98) — Carter cancelled a scheduled Saturday morning Press Conference(11-6-98), supposedly sponsorship for the 2nd team and Rick Mast have fallen through(11-7-98) — I now hear that the press conference was postponed and the deal is still in the works, if it falls thru look for Mast to sign with the #13(11-8-98) — I hear the Travis Carter 2nd team is still on, just delayed in the announcement, which was planned in Atlanta. One rumor I hear is that the car will be the #66 BIG Kmart/Route 66 Ford. CART team owner Carl Haas is rumored to be a partner.(11-10-98) — During the Japan race Saturday night on TBS, commentator Dick Berggren mentioned that it was almost a lock that Darrell Waltrip would have a deal to drive a Ford in 1999. The only rumors I have heard with DW in a Ford is the #13 Elliott Racing 2nd team or maybe the 2nd Carter Ford(11-22-98) — Winston Cup Today Radio reports that DW is rumored to be a possible driver for the 2nd Travis Carter Ford, with Kmart as the sponsor and Carl Haas as a partner. Rick Mast is still in the running(WC Today Radio)(11-25-98) — I hear DW has signed a two year deal with Kmart and the announcement and car unveiling will come on Thursday in NYC by team owner Travis Carter, I am sure DW will be there(WC Today Radio), I hear the car # will be #17 or #66(11-30-98) — the announcement will take place in in New York City at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel at 3pm/et (That’s Racin’ Notes)(12-1-98) — per NASCAR Online: Three-time NASCAR Winston Cup Series champion Darrell Waltrip has found a ride for next season and beyond. The long-time General Motors man will drive for a second Ford team fielded by owner Travis Carter beginning in 1999, informed sources have said. The source said the second Carter team will also be based out of Statesville, with equipment and a race shop bought from David Blair, who hasn’t fielded a competitive team in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series since 1996(NASCAR Online), also Dale Earnhardt was prepared to buy the #96 team from owner Buzz McCall in the next few weeks and field a team for DW in 99 had Waltrip not found another ride(MRN-Marty)(12-2-98)
  • Liberati Back: A few weeks ago I ran a jayskiism about Tony Liberati – Marty from MRNNet reports that Liberati, who was released as chief mechanic from Hendrick Motorsports’ Budweiser team has landed with Jimmie Johnson, the driver. Liberati will head Johnson’s 10-race NASCAR Busch Series effort in 1999. The two worked together in Homestead a few weeks ago, where Liberati was just “helping out.” Liberati will serve as crew chief and team manager for Johnson, the ASA driver, who competed in two NASCAR Busch Series races this year(Marty’s Two Cents-MRN)(12-2-98)

  • Craven’s New Spotter: Mike Calinoff has accepted a position with Ricky Craven and SBIII Motorsports to be the Team Spotter. Over the years, Calinoff has worked with Brett Bodine, Jimmy Spencer, Kenny Wallace, Dick Trickle, Dennis Setzer, and Ted Musgrave. Mike is also the publisher of
  • Snow Ball Derby UPDATE 4: The Snowball Derby is set for December 3-6, and Grassmann says that Kyle Petty is very supportive and will run in the race along with his son Adam, the first time they will race against each other. Don Grassmann, of Kannapolis, NC, and his partner Ernest Mascha are seeking corporate sponsorship, and will possibly televise the race. This years Snowball Derby is the 31st annual event, and will be 331 laps around the fastest half mile in America at the Five Flas Speedway in Pensacola, FL. Each year another lap is added to the race, see all the info(tickets and such) at: Five Flags Speedway(11-24-98) — I now hear the Petty’s will NOT be there but cannot confirm that, anyone know? I hear that the Petty’s will be there, but later in the week and have heard that Rich Bickle & Butch Miller will be there(11-27-98) — Both Geoff Bodine and son Barry are scheduled to appear at the Snowball Derby, Wednesday December 2nd(Geoff Bodine Fanclub), also check out the Five Flags Link(above) for more news – in addition to the Adam Petty and father Kyle Petty face-off, a short list of racing stars who will compete includes Steve Park, Barry and Geoff Bodine, Rich Bickle, David Rogers, Gary St. Amant, Boris Said, David Green, Robert Pressley and Curtis Markham, all of whom will be on the bill for this years version of the Wintertime racing spectacular called the Snowball Derby. Also check out the iRACE story: Years of red-hot action hasn’t melted Snowball(12-2-98)


  • Sad News: former NASCAR Winston Cup Director Dick Beaty passed away. Thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends(NASCAR Online)(12-1-98)

  • Hoover to new shop: Hover Motorsports, who attempted a few Cup races in 1998, has broken ground for a 4000sq ft addition on their shop in Salisbury, NC. The addition is for a Motor room/fab shop and the team is converting all their T-birds to Taurus'(12-1-98)
  • Washington-Erving Stuff: WEM is not looking to move up to Cup in 1999. The BGN will run a full schedule and switch to Chevy’s. No driver announced yet. Have heard in the past that Dr Pepper would return as the 1999 sponsor(12-1-98)