February 2005 Truck Series News Archive


  • Crew Member injured: Ken Evans, a crew member on Robert Pressley’s #59 Dodge, was transported to Loma Linda University Medical Center as a precaution after he was struck by one of the trucks. He was alert when examined by the speedway’s track safety crew.(Orange County Register)(2-26-2005)
  • Park wins at California: #62-Steve Park won the American Racing Wheels 200 at the California Speedway, his first win in the Truck Series and he becomes the 10th driver to win a race in the 3 major series [Cup, Busch and Trucks]. Parks last NASCAR wins was at Rockingham in the Cup Series in Feb 2001. #16-Mike Bliss, who replaced injured Jack Sprague early in the race, was leading the race with 5 laps to go when he ran out of gas, Bliss/Sprague finished 22nd. The rest of the top five were #04-Bobby Hamilton, #99-Ricky Craven, #50-Todd Kluever, and #1-Ted Musgrave.
    For race results, see:
  • Skinner wins pole at California: #5-Mike Skinner won the pole for the American Racing Wheels 200 at California Speedway with a speed of 178.218mph. The rest of the top five are: #75-David Starr, #17-David Reutimann, #12-Robert Huffman and #38-Brandon Whitt. Two drivers failed to make the race #31-Jason Rudd nand #48-Derrike Cope.
    See starting lineups at:
    TruckSeries.com – Starting Lineup.(2-25-2005)
  • Nice Gesture: NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series drivers Kerry Earnhardt, Todd Kluever, Bill Lester and Mike Skinner will be visiting the Warren/Holyfield Boys & Girls Club of Metro Atlanta on Thursday, March 3. The drivers will hold a question and answer session, along with an autograph session. The drivers are in town as part of a media day in advance of the March 18 World Financial Group 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.(AMS PR)(2-25-2005)

    Jack Sprague Suffers Broken Heel, Plans to start race at California: Jack Sprague, driver of the #16 Chevy Trucks Xpress Motorsports Silverado, sustained a broken heel on his left foot in an accident at his Charlotte-area home on Wednesday, February 23, 2005. Sprague was performing home maintenance on gutters when he lost his footing on a frozen patch of the roof. Sprague will practice the #16 very minimally turning the driving duties over to NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Chevrolet Monte Carlo driver Mike Bliss for the majority of the practice as well as qualifying. Sprague will start the American Racing Wheels 200 Friday night at California Speedway with Bliss standing by in the pits to relieve Sprague, should he be unable to complete the 100 lap event. For more information on Jack Sprague and the #16 Chevy Trucks Silverado team, log on tojacksprague.com.(2-25-2005)

  • Gaughan To Start Everyone’s Engines for the American Racing Wheels 200: It’s not often that one driver gets to tell another driver to start their race vehicle, but that’s just what will happen in this weekend’s American Racing Wheels 200 when the driver of the #77 American Racing Wheels Dodge, Brendan Gaughan will give the command to start engines. Gaughan was tapped by American Racing Wheels to be the Grand Marshal for their event, an honor that’s not being taken lightly by Gaughan. The act is part of American Racing Wheels’ “Legends of Racing” theme they’ve had in place over the four years they’ve sponsored the California NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event. Gaughan was notably touched when he received word that he would be American Racing Wheels’ Grand Marshal. “I’m flat out honored that American Racing has asked me to be the Grand Marshal of the American Racing 200,” said Gaughan from his Las Vegas based Orleans Racing shops. “It brought a tear to my eye. Walker Evans, Bob Bondurant and Parnelli Jones were their three others. To have Brendan Gaughan on that list is just unbelievable. They’ve been with me a long time and with any luck they’ll be with me a whole lot longer.” You can watch Gaughan give the command to start engines for the American Racing Wheels 200 on SpeedTV. The program goes live at 3:00pm/pt this Friday.(Orleans Racing PR)(2-25-2005)
  • Special Paint Scheme for #75: California Speedway brings a special paint scheme to the Spears Manufacturing Chevrolet Silverado. This is the first time that Wayne & Connie Spears race cars or trucks have not been white with blue trim. Spears Manufacturing Company produces multiple PVC and plastic products. This week they have designed a special paint scheme for the #75 Chevrolet Silverado to show off their FlameGuard CPVC Fire Sprinkler product line. For more information on Spears products visit SpearsManufacturing.com (Spears PR)(2-25-2005)
  • Fines Announced for Daytona Infractions: NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series crew chief Chris Showalter was fined $2,000 while Mike Hillman Jr., Steve Kuykendall and Randy Seals were issued $500 fines for rule violations that occurred during last weekend’s NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event at Daytona International Speedway, NASCAR officials announced today.
    Showalter, crew chief for the #16 Chevrolet of driver Jack Sprague, violated Section 12-4-A (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (truck, truck parts, components and/or equipment used that do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series rule book, for an unapproved composite air filter housing. The infraction was discovered during pre-qualifying inspection.
    Hillman, crew chief for the #30 Toyota of driver Chad Chaffin, violated Section 12-4-A and 12-4-Q of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series rule book: Section 20B-2.1E: Streamlining – underpan. The infraction was discovered during pre-qualifying inspection.
    Kuykendall, crew chief for the #21 Chevrolet of driver Mike Harmon, violated Section 12-4-A and 12-4-Q, for an unapproved fuel cell bladder. The infraction occurred during opening day inspection.
    Seals, crew chief for the #4 Dodge of driver Casey Atwood, violated Section 12-4-A and 12-4-Q, for unapproved rear jacking bolts. The infraction was discovered during opening day inspection..(NASCAR PR)(2-23-2005)
  • California News and Notes: To hear Rick Crawford (#14 Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford) tell it, competing in 200 consecutive NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races was the furthest thing from his mind when he took the green flag at Walt Disney World Speedway in Florida on Jan. 19, 1997. Crawford showed up with one truck, one engine and a short track crew and with 71 trucks entered he was pleased to qualify for the 36-truck field. He wound up finishing a solid 11th. “We weren’t thinking about making 200 starts,” said Crawford. “We were thinking about making one.” But the Alabama native is still on-track 198 races later. He’ll make his record 200th series start in Friday’s American Racing Wheels 200 at California Speedway. The streak includes victories at Homestead-Miami Speedway in 1998, Daytona International Speedway in 2003 and Martinsville Speedway a year ago. Crawford, winner of more than $3 million, came within 46 points of the 2002 championship in finishing second to Mike Bliss. What makes Crawford’s feat even more intriguing is that the 46-year-old veteran has run every race for the same owner, Texas entrepreneur Tom Mitchell. Crawford’s truck will carry a special paint scheme this week and a logo saluting owner Mitchell. The one-race colors feature a metal background to represent the iron man status of driver and owner. The metal is blended with the retro blue color that traces its roots to the Mitchell-Crawford NASCAR All Pro Series entries from 14 years ago. Mitchell, who lives in the west Texas town of Ozona and operates what many call a “truckers’ oasis” on Interstate 10, never has attended a race but follows the fortunes of the team via satellite TV and frequent telephone updates from his driver. “He’s a business associate as much as an owner,” said Crawford. “He’s absent but very much a part of the team. Keeping the string alive has been a challenge for Crawford and his team. He’s overcome mechanical problems, illness and injury, most recently last April following an accident at Atlanta Motor Speedway that left Crawford with a broken foot. “If we had raced the next week it might have ended the streak,” he said. “As it turned out, we had a few weeks off before we raced again. I’ll never forget that day (at Martinsville); I limped to get in the truck and I jumped out of it in Victory Lane.” Crawford dodged another bullet last week at Daytona International Speedway when his truck was crowded off the track and slid through the grass but came to rest on all four wheels. Crawford drove the Ford back to pit road. “Somehow the truck righted itself without hitting anything and we’re ready to go to California,” he said. Rick Crawford truly is an iron man – in his never-give-up attitude as well as the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series record book.
    Record start for defending series champion … No defending champion had opened the season with a victory until Bobby Hamilton (#04 Bailey’s Dodge) prevailed in a final-lap duel with Jimmy Spencer (#2 Team ASE Dodge) on Feb. 18 at Daytona International Speedway. Hamilton now counts four victories at the 2.5-mile superspeedway; one as a driver and three as team owner. He’s the sixth different Daytona winner.
    Etc. … Seven competitors have filed for this year’s Raybestos Rookie of the Year Award. Among them is Kerry Earnhardt (#15 Kraft Foods/Stater Bros. Chevrolet), who won the Daytona Bud Pole. … A record 17 different drivers led the Florida Dodge Dealers 250 – nearly half the starting field. The old mark was 13, also at Daytona. … Two competitors, Crawford and Terry Cook (#10 Power Stroke Diesel by International Ford), have participated in all eight NASCAR Craftsman Truck races at California Speedway. Cook has completed 731 laps and 1,462 miles of the 800 laps and 1,600 mile run. … The third-fastest race in series history was run at California Speedway in 2003. Ted Musgrave (#1 Mopar Dodge) won at an average speed of 145.925 mph. … This week’s race will be the first at the track in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series competition since 1999 for two-time champion Ron Hornaday Jr., whose best performance is a third in 1998. … Freshman Shige Hattori (#9 Aisin/Aisin AW Toyota) has been to California Speedway before but in open-wheel racing. Hattori finished fourth in a 1998 Indy Lights race and 30th in the track’s 2002 Indy Racing League finale.
    Musgrave not quite perfect but just about … Musgrave will be gunning for his fourth win in five appearances at California Speedway. Musgrave posted consecutive victories beginning in 2001 and finished second a year ago to Todd Bodine (#66 Fiddle Back Racing Toyota) when the caution flag spoiled his final lap challenge. He has led five consecutive editions of the American Racing Wheels 200, a series record at California Speedway. Musgrave’s Ultra Motorsports team has won four times at the track and was one-two in 2002 with Musgrave and Jason Leffler.
    Bodine anxious to defend his victory … The defending winner won’t be in the same seat as a year ago but that doesn’t bother Bodine, who also won the track’s inaugural NASCAR Busch Series race in 1997. Bodine led the most laps of Daytona’s season-opening race and finished third for his new team owned by Tom Eldredge and directed by veteran crew chief Tony Furr. Don’t count out Sprague in California … Jack Sprague’s (#16 Chevy Trucks Chevrolet) return to fulltime series competition in 2004 included a third-place finish at California Speedway, the three-time champion’s fourth top five at the track. Sprague won back-to-back in 1998-99, clinching his second title with the latter victory. Friday’s race will be Sprague’s 199th on the series.
    California Speedway is among seven currently scheduled tracks that did not exist when the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series began in 1995. The Fontana facility – which succeeded Riverside International Raceway and the Ontario Motor Speedway as Los Angeles area stops for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series – staged its first NASCAR Craftsman Truck race in 1997. Mike Bliss, driving Jim Smith’s #2 Team ASE Ford, led 93 of 100 laps to beat Mike Wallace to the checkered flag.
    Retired NASCAR NEXTEL Cup star Ernie Irvan never won a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race, although he co-owned winning trucks driven by Joe Ruttman and Boris Said. One of Irvan’s two second-place finishes came at California Speedway in 1998.
    What: American Racing Wheels 200 (Race 2 of 25).
    Where: California Speedway.
    When: 9:15 p.m. ET, Friday, Feb. 25.
    Track layout: 2-mile paved.
    Race length: 200 miles/100 laps.
    Posted awards: $618,610.
    TV: SPEED Channel, 9:15 p.m. ET.
    Radio: MRN, XM Satellite.
    2004 winner: Todd Bodine.
    2004 polesitter: Travis Kvapil.
    Pre-race schedule (all times local): Thursday – Practice 2:00 p.m. to 3 p.m. and 3:50 p.m. to 5 p.m. Friday – Qualifying 10:00 a.m. Trucks impounded after qualifying.(NASCAR PR)(2-25-2005)
  • All Black for Gaughan: Driver Brendan Gaughan will wheel an all black #77 Dodge Ram this weekend at Fontana. Gaughan’s Dodge will sport American Racing Wheels livery for this weekend’s event.(Orleans Racing PR)(2-23-2005)
  • Jasper on the #62 at Calif: To keep things interesting Orleans Racing is doing a little swap this weekend. The swap puts driver Steve Park in a yellow #62 Jasper Engines and Transmissions Dodge Ram for this weekend’s race. The move will be short lived, and just for the American Racing Wheels 200.(Orleans Racing PR)(2-23-2005)
  • Speed Channel scores highest rating ever: SPEED Channel’s live coverage of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race on Friday night from Daytona International Speedway scored a Nielsen Rating of 2.1 (1,330,000 households), the highest rating for any program in network history. “We’re obviously very excited to start our 2005 NASCAR season like this,” said SPEED Channel President Jim Liberatore. “SPEED enjoyed a strong offseason in the ratings and a lot of us had an expectation that this could be a breakout year for the network. Of course, when you have a race where two teams are both convinced they belong in Victory Lane until 15 minutes after the event is over, you know you had a great race with a memorable finish. That’s the kind of close, exciting racing the NASCAR Craftsman truck series brought to the network when we started broadcasting it three years ago.” The rating for the Florida Dodge Dealers 250 was up 31% over 2004 (1.6).(Speed Chanel PR)(2-23-2005)

  • Start #200 for Crawford: Eight years and over 32,000 laps in the making the Circle Bar Truck Corral Race Team unveiled the Tom Mitchell-Rick Crawford 200th Consecutive start logo and paint scheme for the American Racing Wheels 200 at California Speedway. The one race scheme features a metal background to represent the Ironman status both Crawford and Mitchell have earned in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series over the last 9 seasons. The metal is blended with the retro blue paint scheme that traces its roots to the Mitchell-Crawford NASCAR All-Pro entries from 14 years ago. Throughout the logo and paint scheme are bolts that when tightened hold the scheme together and represent the closeness of the Mitchell-Crawford combination.(Circle Bar PR)(2-23-2005)
  • #40 announces driver and sponsor: Key Motorsports announced that Mike Herman Jr. will pilot the #40 Chevrolet Silverado for a limited schedule in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. In addition, it was announced Fireside Hearth & Home will become primary sponsor of the team. The first scheduled race will be April 9th at Martinsville Speedway, marking Herman’s debut in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. Although this is his first race in the Truck Series, both Herman and Fireside are no strangers to the track. 2005 will mark the eleventh year that Fireside Hearth & Home has partnered with Mike Herman, Jr. During this span Herman earned 2 NASCAR Weekly Series track championships, 14 wins and 20 poles. Herman’s relationship with Fireside also included a limited schedule with the USAR ProCup Series over the last two seasons. Other events slated for the upcoming season include Dover, Michigan, Milwaukee, Kentucky, Nashville and Richmond. Fireside Hearth & Home offers the most recognized and innovative brands in the industry, competitive pricing, professional installation and service for life. To learn more about Fireside Hearth & Home, you can log onto www.firesideusa.com.(Key Motorsports PR)(2-23-2005)
  • Hamilton wins wild race at Daytona: #04-Bobby Hamilton came from dead last to win the wild Florida Dodge Dealers 250 at the Daytona International Speedway Friday night, passing #2-Jimmy Spencer just before the yellow light came on for the third big wreck of the night on the green-white-checker final lap. #66-Todd Bodine, #99-Ricky Craven and #1-Ted Musgrave rounded out the experienced top five. Spencer thought he had won and drove to victory lane, only to be told he didn’t and had to back out so Hamilton could move on in. The race featured two drivers who flipped their trucks, #14-Rick Crawford and #30-Chad Chaffin. Both were not injured.
    See race results at:
  • Earnhardt wins the pole: #15-Kerry Earnhardt won the first pole of his short Truck Series career by winning the pole for the Florida Dodge Dealers 250 at the Daytona International Speedway, with a lap of 182.478mph. Earnhardt was followed by #46-Dennis Setzer, #12-Robert Huffman, #22-Bill Lester and #13-Tracy Hines. The highest qualifying Ford was #50-Todd Kluever who will start 11th. #04-Bobby Hamilton took the champions provisional while Casey Atwood, who is running the #4 [which is #1 in owners points and guaranteed a spot in the race] qualified 34th.
    Some surprises who missed the race include: #52-Mike Wallace [24th fastest]; #63-J.R. Patton; #45-Rick Markle; #38-David Ragan; #31-Jason Rudd; #48-Derrike Cope.
    See results/lineup at:
    Truckseries – starting lineup
    Truckseries.com – qualifying results.(2-17-2005)
  • News and Notes: Few in the racing community knew what to expect when the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series kicked off a decade ago at Phoenix International Raceway. But one thing was certain: Mike Skinner (No. 5 Toyota Tundra Toyota) had his share of critics before the first green flag waved and through no fault of his own. “I was running a black No. 3 truck with sponsorship from GM Goodwrench and the one thing that I do remember is that many people were upset that my truck looked just like Dale Earnhardt’s car – and that was sacred ground,” Skinner said. “But it was Richard’s (Childress) number and sponsor and I had nothing to do with that. “After (winning) the race in Phoenix and a few more races we established our own identity and that turned things around.” A “few” wins is an understatement. Skinner captured eight victories en route to the 1995 championship and eight more the following year before Childress promoted the California native to the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series. Ten years later, the wheel has spun full circle. This Friday’s Florida Dodge Dealers 250 marks Skinner’s second season back in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. His Bill Davis Racing-prepared Toyota ranks high among pre-season favorites to win the 2005 series title. Skinner finished 11th in 2004 standings with two Bud Poles, a second-place performance at Atlanta Motor Speedway and third place in laps led with 448. The 47-year-old veteran is optimistic the coming year will be much better. “I’m fired up for the season to start,” Skinner said. “We tested at Daytona in the draft and my Tundra was phenomenal. At times last year we had a dominant truck and with a little bit of luck we might have had several wins.” Skinner has strong memories of the series’ inaugural race – and his last lap, .09-second victory over two-time NASCAR NEXTEL Cup champion Terry Labonte. “Even though we had a valve spring break during qualifying and started sixteenth, I was running up front all day,” he said. “It really looked like Terry was going to win the race because he was running strong. He was a Cup driver and really ran well at Phoenix.” Skinner raced his way to the lead at Lap 33, but gave the advantage back to Labonte after pitting for fresh tires late in the race. The strategy proved effective – along with Skinner’s will. “On the last lap, I drove into (Turn) three so hard that when I came off the corner I was completely sideways,” Skinner said. “For a second, I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. But, I was able to get it straightened out and was able to pass Terry on the last corner. In my opinion, that’s the best finish ever in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series history.” Skinner might get some argument on that count recalling, for example, the 2003 Daytona finish in which Rick Crawford (No. 14 Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford), eventual series champion Travis Kvapil and Robert Pressley (No. 59 Melling Select Oil Pumps Dodge) swept side-by-side beneath the checkered flag. To celebrate the 10th anniversary of what’s become America’s No. 3 racing series, SPEED Channel will count down the 25 most memorable NASCAR Craftsman Truck moments during each race broadcast beginning with Friday’s Florida Dodge Dealers 250.

    Truck racing’s second decade unfolds in Florida … The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series is “10 Years Tough” and counting down to its 250th race later this spring at Dover International Speedway. The Florida Dodge Dealers 250 marks the 243rd event and ninth consecutive season in which the season-opening race has been held in the Sunshine State. The 2005 season is the first in which four former champions – Skinner, Ron Hornaday Jr. (No. 6 GM Goodwrench Chevrolet), Jack Sprague (No. 16 Chevy Trucks Chevrolet) and Bobby Hamilton (No. 04 Lufkin Pro Series Dodge) – have battled for the championship. Hamilton is the defending champion while Hornaday returns fulltime to the series for the first time since 1999.

    Etc. … Shige Hattori (No. 9 AISIN/AISIN AW Toyota) is bidding to become the first Japanese-born driver to compete in a NASCAR national touring series race at Daytona International Speedway. Hattori, a veteran open-wheel competitor, just missed qualifying for the 2004 finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Only one Japanese driver has competed in a NASCAR-sanctioned race at Daytona: Seiichi Suzuki participated in a February 1970 Grand American race at the wheel of a Mercury Cougar fielded by “Tiger Tom” Pistone.

    … The Florida Dodge Dealers 250 will be the 100th series start for Ted Musgrave (No. 1 Mopar Dodge). Musgrave won the Bud Pole in 2002. … While only two previous winners are expected to participate in this year’s race – Pressley (2002) and Crawford (2003) – the entry list includes 15 drivers who have won a combined 128 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races. … Pressley is the only driver to have won his first series race at Daytona and one of three to win in his first start. The others are Skinner and Kasey Kahne. … Pressley, who spent the 2003-04 seasons in the NASCAR Busch Series, holds the Daytona series average race speed record of 140.121 mph. That’s the 10th fastest average race speed in series history. … This year’s Daytona race likely will be the first in which the previous season’s top three finishers won’t compete. Carl Edwards, Kvapil and Mike Wallace, all NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series regulars, aren’t entered. … The youngest viewer of SPEED Channel’s Florida Dodge Dealers 250? Possibly Lydia Cathleen Craven, born to Cathleen and Ricky (#99 Superchips Ford) on Feb. 10, the couple’s third child.

    Terry Cook still golden at Daytona … Last year’s Florida Dodge Dealers 250 Bud Pole winner Terry Cook (No. 10 Power Stroke Diesel by International Ford) remains the only driver to lead all five races at Daytona as well as finish among the top 10. Cook was fifth in 2004 with a best finish of fourth in the 2000 inaugural event.

    Jimmy Spencer knows the way … To Daytona’s victory lane, that is. Spencer (No. 2 Mopar/Team ASE Dodge), won the track’s 1994 Pepsi 400, one of the Pennsylvania native’s two NASCAR NEXTEL Cup victories. The Ultra Motorsports team is riding Kahne’s two-race win streak from 2004 – at Darlington and Homestead-Miami Speedway. Jamie McMurray also scored for the No. 2 team at Martinsville Speedway last October.

    Five drivers and four owners who participated in the series’ inaugural race are expected to compete in the Florida Dodge Dealers 250. The drivers are Hornaday, Skinner, Sprague, Johnny Benson (No. 23 Toyota Tundra Toyota) and Ken Schrader (No. 52 Federated Auto Parts Chevrolet). Owners who fielded an entry at Phoenix in 1995 are Schrader, Bob Keselowski, Jim Smith and Wayne Spears. Smith, one of the four off-road owners who brought the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series concept to NASCAR Vice Chairman Bill France, has entered at least one truck in every race. His Ultra Motorsports team has won 35 times – second only to Roush Racing’s 36.

    The season’s NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion has finished among the top five at Daytona just once – Kvapil’s second-place effort in 2003. The worst Daytona finish in a driver’s championship season? Bliss, after engine failure, finished 33rd in 2002 and left Florida 131 points behind winner Pressley. Bliss finished all 24 of the remaining races, logging 13 top-five finishes.

    Fast Facts
    What: Florida Dodge Dealers 250 (Race 1 of 25).
    Where: Daytona International Speedway.
    When: 8:15 p.m. ET, Friday, Feb. 18.
    Track layout: 2.5-mile high-banked paved.
    Race length: 250 miles/100 laps.
    Posted awards: $807,103.
    TV: SPEED Channel, 8:15 p.m. ET.
    Radio: MRN, XM Satellite.
    2004 winner: Carl Edwards.
    2004 polesitter: Terry Cook.
    Pre-race schedule (all times local): Wednesday – Practice 3:00 p.m. – 4:25 p.m. Thursday – Practice 9:00 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. Qualifying 6:30 p.m. Trucks impounded after qualifying.(NASCAR PR)(2-16-2005)

  • Atwood/Peters to the #4, Hamilton to the #04: it was reported on Speed Channel’s NASCAR Live [6:00pm/et, Tues] that Bobbu Hamilton would switch to the #04 and Casey Atwood and Tim Peters will run the #4. Why? With the new qualifying procedures, the #4 is guaranteed to make the first 5 races and Hamilton can fall back and use the Champions Provisional, if needed, and since he is the most recent Truck Series Champ, he is guarantee to make the races.(2-15-2005)
  • Benson has a sponsor for Daytona: during Speed Channels Nextel Cup practice coverage, Johnny Benson mentioned that Miccosukee Indian Gaming Casino will be his sponsor on the #23 Bill Davis Racing Toyota at Daytona.(2-12-2005)
  • Congrats to the Craven’s: Before Ricky Craven could leave for Daytona there was just one more thing he had to do at home – be there for the birth of his third child. Ricky and his wife, Cathleen, welcomed Lydia Cathleen Craven into the world at 8:47pm/et on Thursday, February 10. Lydia weighed in at 6 pounds, 13 ounces and was just under 20 inches long. “She is absolutely beautiful,” Craven said. “Everybody should get to come home from the hospital on Friday so I can spend a few days with her before I leave for Daytona next week. This is the best start to SpeedWeeks I’ve ever had.” Lydia will not be in Daytona to cheer her father on while he drives the #99 Superchips Ford F-150 in next Friday’s Craftsman Truck race, but she intends to watch live coverage on Speed Channel between feedings.(Roush Racing PR)(2-12-2005)
  • #29 gets a sponsor: K Automotive Motorsports today announced that SUBcrews.com, a Web site linking subcontractors with builders, general contractors, remodelers and homeowners, will sponsor the team’s #29 Ford for Brad Keselowski in the Craftsman Truck Series. Financial terms were not announced. SUBcrews.com will also back a Busch Series team fielded by Bob Schacht Motorsports for driver Stuart Kirby.(NASCAR Scene)(2-10-2005)
  • So What Happens to Gaughan? UPDATE 5, Jasper? Yep: a few rumors have been floating:
    Gaughan supposedly talked to the #0 Haas-CNC team, but hearing Mike Bliss will end up in the car.
    Gaughan could go back to the Truck Series as a teammate to Steve Park for the team owned by hi father, Park is signed thru 2005 in the #62 truck.
    And one that is a tad ‘out there’ is Gaughan teaming up with Robby Gordon and Jim Smith [kiss my what?], but not sure if it would a full time deal, Truck team, run in Gordon’s Busch car or a 2nd Cup team.(12-9-2004)
    UPDATE: hearing that Gaughan will drive the #77 Jasper Penske Dodge Truck with Jasper Engines as the sponsor in the Truck Series?(12-10-2004)
    UPDATE 2: Brendan Gaughan tells Sirius Speedway (Sirius Satellite Radio) that he will run a heavy schedule of NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series events next season, after being released by Penske-Jasper Racing earlier in the week. “Steve Park will run the full season in the #62 Orleans Dodge, and I will be in a second truck – the #61 – in a bunch of truck races, maybe even the full schedule. Rusty Wallace has also asked me to run his Busch car in a handful of races that Jeremy (Mayfield) and Jamie (McMurray) don’t run. That’s not official yet, but the offer is there.” Gaughan said he is relieved to have his future decided, adding, “The decision was more theirs than mine. It’s their team, and if they didn’t want me there, I didn’t want to be there. I’m happy to be where I am now. I beat Brian Vickers in the Rookie of the Year chase this season, but you never heard anything about him being replaced. There were no rumblings coming out of Hendrick Motorsports. You need to know you have the support of your team.” Gaughan said he expects to make major sponsor announcements for both himself and Park within the next 2-3 weeks.(12-11-2004)
    UPDATE 3: Steve Park will return to the No. 62 Orleans Dodge full time in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series in 2005, Orleans Racing officials confirmed Dec. 13. The team also announced that Brendan Gaughan will drive a second Dodge fielded by Orleans Racing in at least the 16 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series events that are companion races to NASCAR NEXTEL Cup events. More details will be released at a later date.(Orleans Racing site/PR)(12-13-2004)
    UPDATE 4: Gaughan will run the #77 and am hearing Jasper Engines could be a sponsor in some form.(1-15-2005)
    UPDATE 5 Jasper and schedule: Cementing a relationship formed in 2004, Jasper Engines and Transmissions and Orleans Racing announced a sponsor partnership for the 2005 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series campaign. The new partnership puts Jasper Engines and Transmissions on the #77 Orleans Racing Dodge, which will be piloted by Brendan Gaughan. The partnership is not limited to vehicle sponsorship as a technology alliance between the Indiana based engine and transmission remanufacturer and the Las Vegas based race team has been formed. Sponsorship for the #77 Jasper Engines and Transmissions Dodge will encompass 18 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series events while the technology exchange will touch all of Orleans Racing’s on-track programs for 2005. And Gaughan looks forward to continue representing the Jasper Engines and Transmissions installer network. “I enjoyed working with all the people at Jasper Engines and Transmissions in 2004”, says Gaughan, “and to be able to build on that relationship is certainly exciting.” The #77 Jasper Engine and Transmissions, Orleans Dodge will make its debut in the Dodge Dealers 250, which takes place February 18th at Daytona International Superspeedway. 2005 Event Schedule For the #77 Jasper Engines Dodge:
    Daytona, 2/18; California, 2/25; Atlanta, 3/18; Martinsville, 4/9; Gateway, 4/30; Mansfield, 5/15; Lowe’s Motor Speedway, 5/20; Dover, 6/3; Michigan 6/18; IRP, 8/5; Bristol, 8/24; Richmond, 9/8; New Hampshire, 9/17; Martinsville, 10/22; Atlanta, 10/29 Texas, 11/4; Phoenix, 11/11;Homestead, 11/18.(Orleans Racing PR)(2-10-2005)
  • Pressley back to the #59, full time UPDATE Melling to sponsor: The HT Motorsports #59, located in the Virginia Motorsports Technology Center (VMTC), adjacent to Arrington Manufacturing on Motorsports Drive in Martinsville, Virginia announces its 2005 racing line up. Robert Pressley returns to drive the HT Motorsports #59 for the entire truck series schedule in 2005 and is very excited about the opportunity to return to a team that is building a platform for education and development of future stars of the racing industry. Robert will team with NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship crew chief, Fred Graves, who is returning to the truck series after several years in both the Cup and Busch Series as a crew chief and engineer. Grave’s vast experience will provide an opportunity for (VMTC) and HT Motorsports to become successful partners with Patrick Henry Community College, and produce quality craftsmen for all phases of the racing business. HT Motorsports will move into their new 25,000 square foot, building in Martinsville at the end of February. HT Motorsports has opportunities for sponsorships available. If you are interested, contact Jim Harris at 434-528-6701.(HT Motorsports PR)(2-1-2005)
    UPDATE: M-Select, the new brand of high performance oil pumps and engine parts from Melling, is pleased to announce our association with Jim Harris’ HT Motorsports #59 Dodge and driver Robert Pressley to compete in the 2005 Nascar Craftsman Truck Series. Melling has a successful history with both Pressley and Harris. This led Mark Melling, president of M-Select/Melling Engine Parts, to ink a deal sponsoring Pressley in the Florida Dodge Dealers 250 at Daytona, and then as an associate sponsor for the remainder of the season. M-Select Performance Parts were introduced in December 2004 at the Performance Racing Industry Trade show. Our catalog containing oil pumps, camshafts, timing components, valve train parts, and cylinder sleeves will debut in March 2005. For more information on M-Select Performance Parts see www.melling.com/select.(PR)(2-9-2005)
  • Brevak Racing, Rudd get sponsor for #31: RepairOne announced that it has teamed up with Brevak Racing as an associate sponsor for the #31 Dodge truck in the opening race of the 2005 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. Series rookie Jason Rudd, nephew of NASCAR Nextel Cup star Ricky Rudd, will drive the #31 RepairOne Dodge on February 18 at Daytona International Speedway in The Florida Dodge Dealers 250. Bob and Shelly Brevak, owners of the #31 Dodge, have had a long- standing relationship with truck sponsor Todd Hayes, founding partner of RepairOne. The two first teamed up in the early 90s when team owner and 1990 ARCA Champion Bob Brevak was driving in the ARCA Series. RepairOne sponsored the #31 Dodge in last year’s opening race, when the truck was unfortunately caught up in “the big one” on lap 50. Brevak Racing is currently seeking additional sponsors for the race and for the 2005 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season. For sponsorship information, contact: Shelly Brevak, Team Owner of Brevak Racing, at (715) 682-9399. For more information, log onto brevakracing.com or RepairOne.com.(PR Newswire)(2-7-2005)
  • McClure to run Daytona: Eric McClure, son of Jerry McClure of Morgan McClure Motorsports #4 Nextel Cup car will be driving for Lafferty Motorsports’s #89 Craftsman Truck Chevrolet, sponsored by Endura-Tech valve springs for the Craftsman Truck Florida Dodge Dealers 250 at Daytona February 18th, 2005. Chris Lafferty, owner of Lafferty Motorsports and Lafferty Engine Creations, hopes to continue racing his Endura-Tech Chevrolet Truck at California Speedway with Eric McClure pending results of the Daytona race. They hope to run an entire truck schedule with help from sponsors such as Endura-Tech, 77.com (an apparel company), Safe Craft Safety Equipment, Crankshaft Specialties, Hillbilly Hotdogs and technical support from Morgan McClure Motorsports. More about Endura-Tech at endura-tech.com.(2-7-2005)
  • Kluever to run ARCA at Daytona: Roush has entered a 2005 Ford Taurus with Todd Kluever listed as the driver. The team, crew chiefed by John Monsam, will be sponsored by World Financial Group.(ARCARacing.com)(2-4-2005)
  • Testing at Talladega: Four Toyota teams/drivers are scheduled to test at Talladega Superspeedway on Thursday & Friday, February 3 & 4, 2005: #17-David Reutimann; #30-Chad Chaffin; #9-Shigeaki Hatori and #38-Brandon Whitt(Talladega Superspeedway PR)(2-3-2005)
    Five: Todd Bodine also tested in the #66 Fiddleback Racing Toyota.(2-4-2005)
  • Martin may start a Truck Series team: Mark Martin hinted on Monday that he is leaning towards fielding his own trucks in the Craftsman Truck Series, a decision that would keep him closer to home in 2006. Martin has long said that he plans on making the Craftsman Truck Series a part of his post-Nextel Cup life. His current employer, Roush Racing, fields two full-time trucks and could easily make room for whatever schedule Martin plans to run in 2006. “I am looking very hard at the Craftsman Truck Series next year,” Martin said. “Initially, the talks were to be a part of Roush.” Martin stressed that if he starts a team, it would be for his own family’s use.(NASCAR.com)(2-1-2005)





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