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January 2002 News Archives


 

  • (1-31-2002)

  • Rolex 24 at Daytona, TV, Drivers, Sites: The Rolex 24 At Daytona is a 24-hour race beginning at 1:00pm/et on Saturday, Feb 2nd at Daytona International Speedway. Speedvision will televise the race from 12:30 to 7:00pm on Saturday and from 9:00am to 1:30pm on Sunday. Motor Racing Network [MRN] will have an hour-long report for the start and end of the race at 12:30pm Saturday and Sunday, and half-hour reports at 4:30pm and 8:30pm Saturday and at 12:30am and 8:30am Sunday.
    The cars in the race:
    SRP(SportsRacing Prototype): The premier class in the series such as Lola, Ferrari, Riley & Scott, Kudzu, Norma and Ascari. Ford, Judd, Mazda and Porsche supply engines.
    SRPII(SportsRacing Prototype II): Smaller versions of the SRP cars, sch as Nissan Lola, the Nissan Pilbeam, the BMW Picchio and the Mazda Kudzu.
    GTS(Grand Touring Super): These closed-cockpit cars use high-performance engines — V8-powered Corvettes and Saleens and a Jaguar, V10-powered Vipers and turbocharged Porsches, Ferraris and Marcos Manteras.
    GT(Grand Touring): Resemble street cars such as the Porsche GT3, BMW M3, Ferrari GT, Marcos Mantis and Mosler.
    AGT(American Grand Touring): Tube-frame constructed with American iron or aluminum block V8 engines with a 375-cubic inch maximum. Class includes Corvettes, Mustangs, Camaros and Auroras.
    Some drivers with NASCAR ties who are scehduled to run the race:
    #2 SRP – Tony Stewart
    #3 GTS – Paul Gentilozzi, Brian Simo and Scott Pruett
    #7 GTS – Boris Said
    #8 SRP – Anthony Lazzaro
    #16 SRP – Butch Leitzinger
    #20 SRP – Dorsey Schroeder
    #29 AGT – Irv Hoerr
    #33 GT – Derrike Cope
    #36 SRP – Robby Gordon
    #43 GT – Kyle Petty, Mike Borkowski, [John Andretti is supposed to drive in this car but not listed]
    #46 AGT – Charles Morgan, Rob Morgan
    #72 GT – David Murry
    #74 SPR – Jack Baldwin, Wally Dallenbach Jr, Mark Simov #90 AGT – Rick Carelli, Kevin Harvick, John Metcalf
    #95 SRP – Jeret Schroeder (not NASCAR just a local Jersey guy)
    For more see story at the Daytona Beach News Journal: A primer on the Rolex 24 at Daytona or see the sites: www.grand-am.com, will have hourly updates, and www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com, will have periodic updates.
    Also the RE/MAX team will be driving one of the Flis Corvettes in the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona this weekend with Kevin Harvick, Dave Liniger, Rick Carelli,. and John Metcalf as drivers. During the race, their site is scheduled to provide streaming video, race stats and hourly updates of teams in all classes at www.remax.com.(1-31-2002)
  • Kmart pulls sponsorship from #26 and #66 UPDATE and BUT: Financially beleaguered Kmart Corp. has halted the flow of funding to two Winston Cup race team it sponsored [#26 and #66 Ford’s], effective immediately, sources said early Thursday. No formal announcement has been made, but the Fords of Haas-Carter Motorsports will attempt to make the Daytona 500 field without Kmart’s assistance or decals, the sources said. The cars are to be driven by Joe Nemechek [#26] and Todd Bodine [#66]. Kmart has stuggled financially and last week filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The race teams were told at that time that the retailer’s commitment for the 2002 Winston Cup season would be honored. David Harris of Cox Marketing said Travis Carter, one of the teams’ owners, was in meetings with Kmart officials and was not immediately available for comment. He said Carter was working with Kmart officials to evaluate options and determine the next step.(ThatsRacin.com)(1-31-2002)
    UPDATE: Just a week before qualifying for the Daytona 500, Kmart Corporation, erstwhile sponsor of Travis Carter’s two Winston Cup teams, has pulled the plug on its involvement in the teams, a company statement said Thursday. Carter could not be reached for comment. The move, termed a “suspension”, points again to economic difficulties for mid-line NASCAR teams. The Busch Series has struggled for more than a year. The Winston Cup season begins with several teams operating without sponsorship, or with partial sponsorship.(SpeedVision)(1-31-2002)
    BUT NASCAR.com is reporting that while “Kmart Corp. has already acknowledged filing Chapter 11 for bankruptcy, but the company hasn’t, according to one high-ranking Kmart official, turned off the blue lights on its NASCAR sponsorship. Published reports on Thursday said that Kmart had pulled its sponsorship from the #26 and #66 Ford Winston Cup Series teams owned by Haas-Carter Motorsports. The reports also stated that the #26 Ford of Joe Nemechek and #66 Ford of Todd Bodine would go to Daytona for Speedweeks with no decals on the car. But that’s not the case right now, according to Dave Karraken, vice president of communications and marketing for Kmart. The store chain is also slated to be an official sponsor of the Daytona 500 next month. “There was an unofficial announcement leaked to the press today,” Karraken told NASCAR.com on Thursday. “We are still talking with Haas-Carter regarding the program and hope to have a final decision and official announcement within the next day or two. What we are doing is evaluating everything that our company is involved with sponsorship-wise. This is all being done within the Chapter 11, court-ordered procedures — it’s all part of the process.” A call to the team’s shop on Thursday was referred to Cox Marketing Group, its public relations firm. “The team is trying to work everything out with Kmart right now,” said a Cox representative. “Travis Carter (team owner) and Kmart are talking about all the particulars this afternoon.”(NASCAR.com)(1-31-2002)
  • Air Force back with the #21: The Air Force will continue its association with the legendary Wood Brothers Racing #21 Taurus for the upcoming 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup racing season. The car, driven by Elliott Sadler and sponsored by Motorcraft, Ford Motor Company’s parts brand, will feature the Air Force symbol on its hood and quarter panels. In addition, there will be a special Air Force paint scheme at two races during the 2002 season. The Air Force is conducting an aggressive recruiting campaign to attract more than 37,000 new recruits this year for jobs in more than 200 areas ranging from air traffic controllers to computer operators, jet engine mechanics to medical technicians. The service also needs hundreds of doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and engineers and plans to award more than $60 million in ROTC scholarships before October. The Air Force and the #21 car share the same strategy of using teamwork, technology, speed and information superiority to outsmart whatever situation it faces. The service will continue to use its involvement in NASCAR as part of its overall plan to get more young men and women, especially those with mechanical and electrical aptitudes, interested in an Air Force career. Air Force recruiters will be at most of this season’s races – inviting NASCAR fans, who love the speed of NASCAR, to “Cross Into the Blue,” and experience the supersonic speed and high technology of today’s Air Force.(Air Force Public Affairs)(1-31-2002)
  • Park Testing News: On Monday, January 28th, Steve Park tested the #1 Pennzoil Monte Carlo at Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, NC. park said, “It was wonderful to get back behind the wheel and turn some laps. I had no problems whatsoever as I continue to prepare for my return to Winston Cup. We tested the car all day and the longest run was about 50 laps. Dr. Petty was there to continue his evaluation of my progress and I think he’s pretty satisfied at this stage of the game. I know I am. Paul Andrews and I are very pleased with the lap times. I had no vision problems, no dizziness and it felt like I had never missed a day behind the wheel. It felt great. We’ll be deciding when and where the next test will be very soon. Even though I am spending several hours a day in the gym improving my strength and stamina there is no real substitute for good old seat time. I need to fine-tune my skills and the only way to do that is to take a car hard into turn one. So we’ll test again and evaluate some more and I’ll be back to racing before you know it. The green flag is just around the corner.”(Steve Park Siteimages of the test)(1-31-2002)
  • Reffner in the #68: TWC Motorsports announced that past CTS Rookie of the Year, Bryan Reffner, will make his NASCAR Winston Cup Series debut in March behind the wheel of the #68 Chevy. Reffner brings over 20 years of racing competition and technical experience to the team. Team owner, Tom Coleman considered drivers from every level of NASCAR and chose Reffner because of an immediate comfort level he felt the first time the two met. Not to mention that every time Bryan has moved up to a more demanding series, he has had an immediate impact on the competition. Reffner claimed the ASA Championship and, in 1996, grabbed rookie of the year in the CTS. Reffner, a 38 year-old native of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, now resides in Mooresville, NC.(TWC Motorsports PR)(1-31-2002)
  • Irvan and Mattioli’s to be honored: Ernie Irvan and Pocono Raceway owners Dr. Joe and Dr. Rose Mattioli are being honored as inductees into the Stock Car Hall of Fame. The 13th Annual Induction Ceremony will take place on February 11, 2002 at the Daytona Beach Hilton. Former inductees include Richard Petty, Bobby Allison, Junior Johnson, Cale Yarborough, Darrell Waltrip, Benny Parsons, Buddy Baker, Harry Gant, and Bill France, Jr. Benny Parsons is scheduled to introduce Irvan during the ceremony that will include a cocktail hour and a dinner. Admission to the event, which is open to the public, is $85 (cocktail hour and dinner). Proceeds benefit three local charities in the Daytona Beach area – The Sheriff’s Youth Ranch, 100 Deputies for 100 Kids, and the Association for Retarded Citizens. Tickets can be purchased by calling (386) 788-7837 or (386) 299-0771.(Irvan.com)(1-31-2002)
  • TRAC News: Wind-tunnel testing for Team Racing Auto Circuit [TRAC] cars was conducted recently at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia. The testing was supervised by Riley & Scott Race Car Engineering, which is designing and manufacturing the cars for TRAC. It also was announced Jan. 16 that an agreement had been reached with Dallas-based Drew Pearson Marketing Inc., which will make the former all-pro wide receiver’s company an exclusive licensee for headwear for the league and its teams. DPM holds or has held licensing agreements with virtually every major sports league in America, and has exclusive agreements with ESPN, Disney, Lucasfilm (“Star Wars”), the X Games and Mattel’s Hot Wheels and Matchbox lines.(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(1-31-2002)

    (1-30-2002)

  • Money at the Daytona 500: In the first Daytona 500 back in 1959, Lee Petty collected $19,050 in prize money for taking the checkered flag. Second-place finisher Johnny Beauchamp earned $7,650. The purse for the race totaled $67,760. How things have changed through the years. This year’s 44th annual Daytona 500 on Feb. 17 will award the winner of the “Great American Race” a minimum $1,327,030 with the race’s entire purse exceeding $12 million, an increase of more than a $1 million from last year. The runner-up finisher in the Daytona 500 will receive a minimum $928,100 while the driver that finishes in the 43rd position will collect a minimum $114,236.
    Total posted awards: $12,314,505
    1st $1,327,030
    2nd $928,100
    3rd $631,500
    4th $479,075
    5th $353,175.(Speedway PR)(1-30-2002)
  • Bodine Assoc Sponsor: TEC Graphics, Inc. announced today their sponsorship of NASCAR Driver Brett Bodine and the # 11 Ford for the 2002 Winston Cup race season. This partnership represents the first venture between TEC Graphics and the NASCAR Winston Cup Series. Team owner and driver Brett Bodine shows solid strength in the Winston Cup Series and dedication to his sport. As a member of the Modified Hall of Fame and holder of the fastest time at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, we are looking forward to an exciting season. “Teaming up with Brett Bodine Racing this year is an tremendous opportunity for us. I’m confident that this year should be nothing short of a win-win season for both of our teams.” said Tom Cherry, President of TEC Graphics. Located in Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina, TEC Graphics Inc. is a manufacturer of screenprinted graphic overlays, decals, window clings, Point of Purchase promotions, floor graphics and membrane switches.(Brett Bodine Racing PR)(1-30-2002)
  • Carl Long – #85 and #59 in 2002: Price Motorsports, who will make their Winston Cup debut with driver Carl Long at Rockingham will use #59, not #35 as reported. The team is using #59, because the team owner, Foster Price, used the number when he raced late models. The #85 Mansion Motorsports team is also getting their Dodge ready for the Daytona 500 and hope to test at Talladega this weekend. There will be three teams that Carl Long plans to drive for in 2002 for Rookie Of The Year honors. The #85 Mansion Motorsports Dodge owned by Thee Dixon, #59 Price Motorsports Dodge owned by Foster Price, and a combo team thats owned by SR Racing and Glenn Racing using the #85 or #59 whichever is higher in car owner points. Bobby Robinson of SR Racing will be the crew chief. Long’s scheduled races for the three teams will be announced at a later date.(paraphrased from the Carl Long Site)(1-30-2002)
  • Wrangler Chevy to be auctioned UPDATE – SOLD:Dale Earnhardt’s blue-and-yellow Monte Carlo [#3 Wrangler], (which comes with a crash helmet signed by Earnhardt) is going on the auction block along with some 850 other collector cars at the 2002 Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Classic Car Auction to be held from January 17th through the 20th at the WestWorld resort in Scottsdale, AZ. Also for sale is the Richard Petty 50th anniversary Limited Edition Pontiac Grand Prix concept car. For more info see the Barrett-Jackson site (12-24-2001)
    UPDATE: heard that the Earnhardt car and matching autographed helmet went for $90,000, also hear a unrestored 1990 Jeff Gordon #1 Baby Ruth BGN Ford Thunderbid went for $28,000(1-30-2002)
  • Jarrett special Chicago paint? UPDATE Muppets?: hearing that #88-Dale Jarrett will have special schemes for the Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland and the scheme will be unveiled in Feb or March 2002(1-26-2002)
    UPDATE: hearing the Dale Jarrett Chicago scheme is supposedly Muppets Kermit/Ms Piggy and that besides the #10 Fozzie Bear scheme, there will be two other Muppet schemes at Chicago with one rumored to be #41-Jimmy Spencer(1-30-2002)
  • No Brack at Daytona: from a Chip Ganassi and Jimmy Spencer conference call transcript: “I would say it’s pretty much put to bed now (running Kenny Brack in Daytona 500). It’s getting a little late. We’ve got to be at Daytona in the next 10 days or so. I would say that’s unfortunately gone by the wayside. We have a relationship with Kenny for a few years, and if something happens down the road, it would be great. I know he’s done some testing with us, and he certainly enjoyed it and gave some good feedback. I know the guys were pumped up about working with him. It’s a work in progress I’d say, but nothing is going to happen in the short term.” Chip Ganassi, onwer of the #40 and #41 Cup cars, Brack tested the #42 Dodge at Daytona in the hopes of getting a sponsor to run the race(1-30-2002)
  • Shelmerdine and Hooters? UPDATE 3: hearing Kirk Shelmerdine will make a one race deal with Hooters to run the Daytona 500 with the #80 Stan Hover team with Danny Glad building the engine(1-25-2002)
    UPDATE: The Hooters restaurant chain, which sponsored the car that the late Alan Kulwicki drove to the 1992 Winston Cup championship, plans to return to the series after a five-year absence. Hooters plans to sponsor the #80 Ford, which Kirk Shelmerdine will drive in an attempt to qualify for the Daytona 500.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-26-2002)
    UPDATE 2: hey the Buzz caught up……..A little birdie tells The Buzz that Hooters restaurants may be returning to Winston Cup. Rumors are swirling around a possible one-race Daytona 500 deal that would put ARCA ace Kirk Shelmerdine in a Hooters-sponsored Ford with #80 on the side.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(1-27-2002)
    UPDATE 3: The Hooters restaurant chain, which sponsored the car that the late Alan Kulwicki drove to the 1992 Winston Cup championship, plans to return to the series after a five-year absence. Hooters plans to sponsor the #80 Ford, which Kirk Shelmerdine will drive in an attempt to qualify for the Daytona 500. “I’d say it’s a done deal as far as the one race goes,” said Mike McNeil, vice president of marketing for Hooters of America. Shelmerdine, who was Dale Earnhardt’s crew chief during four of his seven championship seasons, has driven cars on the ARCA circuit but now is considering running the Hooters-sponsored ProCup Series with an occasional Winston Cup start.(Atlanta Journal Constitution)(1-28-2002)
    UPDATE 4: After a seven-year hiatus from the NASCAR Winston Cup ranks, the orange and white Hooters Restaurant paint scheme will return in 2002. Stan Hover is set to field a car for crew chief-turned-driver Kirk Shelmerdine during Speedweeks at Daytona next month. The #80 Ford will look similar to the one the late Alan Kulwicki drove to a championship in 1992. “As of right now, Hooters is going to sponsor us during Speedweeks and then we’re going to talk from there,” Hover said. “It’s pretty cool to put this deal together and get them to come back into to the sport after a long absence. Considering they had that championship with Kulwicki and all, we’re real excited about this. From what I understand, the cars are going to be painted a lot like they were before. Hooters just wanted to have some fun and they figure Daytona was the place to start.” Shelmerdine has competed mostly in the ARCA ranks the last few years, but may be stepping into a BGN ride this year. Hover said that Shelmerdine is his driver for Speedweeks and, to the best of his knowledge, will drive the #49 Chevrolet for Jay Robinson if they can put a BGN deal together. Look for Andy Hillenburg to take over any more driving duties for Hover if the team enters any more races.(NASCAR.com)(1-30-2002)
  • Irvan to field ARCA team: former Cup driver Ernie Irvan has converted part of a storage shed on his 160-acre farm near Mooresville, N.C., into a garage bay and is helping Kevin Conway prepare a Chevy that Conway plans to run in an ARCA race on March 9. Irvan, 43, tried to work with Conway, 23, to find sponsorship for a foray into the BGN or CTS last year. The difficult economy made it tough to find somebody willing to put up $2 million or more needed for that, though. At the same time, Irvan was rebuilding his family’s home that was severely damaged by a fire in March 2000. The Irvans moved back into the house just before Christmas. With that behind him, Irvan decided that he and Conway needed to get on the track to try to show people the young driver’s talent. The Atlanta ARCA race is the only one they know for sure they’ll go to, but if a sponsor materializes they have plans to run at Kentucky Speedway and at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte later in the year. They’ll use a Chevy they got from Innovative Motorsports in which Shane Hmiel finished second in an ARCA race at Atlanta last fall. Crew members from various Winston Cup and Grand National teams are coming by Irvan’s farm after work in the evenings to help get the car ready, and Irvan said he will enlist Winston Cup crewmen to help pit the car in Atlanta in March. “It’s the safest thing I can do in racing and still be married,” joked Irvan, who retired from driving in 1999 only after coming all the way back from his near-fatal crash at Michigan in 1994 to win three more Cup races. Conway is from Lynchburg, VA, but moved to the Charlotte area in 1991 to pursue a racing career. He’s raced Legends cars and competed in the ASA until his sponsorship there dried up. He’s an instructor at the Richard Petty Driving Experience at the Atlanta track and at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. He has a degree in marketing from UNCC. Irvan ran only one ARCA race in his career. It was at Atlanta and Irvan won it driving a #18 car [a green Pontiac – image]. So that’s the number Conway plans to use in the March 9 event.(ThatsRacin.com)(1-30-2002)
  • The #90 and Mast to test at Talladega: #90 Car Owner Junie Donlavey and Rick Mast are set to test at Talladega Superspeedway Jan. 30-31 in preparation for the 44th Daytona 500. The Donlavey Racing team will also test at North Carolina Motor Speedway [The Rock] Feb. 4-5 in preparation for the Feb. 24 event at the speedway in Rockingham.(Keystone Marketing PR)(1-30-2002)
  • Scanners at ISC Tracks UPDATE: International Speedway Corporation, parent company of Americrown Service Corporation, has entered into a marketing agreement that limits scanner related vendors to two companies at their tracks (Calif, Chicagoland, Daytona, Darlington, Homestead, Kansas, Michigan, Phoenix, Richmond, Rockingham, Talladega, Watkins Glen), Racing Electronics and Track Scan. This agreement leaves six scanner vendors in a position that they are not allowed on International Speedway Corporation property. Two of the other vendors are Race-Scan and Frequency Fan Club, not sure of the other four.(in part from a RACE-SCAN Communications PR/Site, see more there)(1-24-2002)
    UPDATE: been told that TrackScan and Racing Electronics will honor Race-Scan membership cards and provide frequency updates for scanners at ISC facilities with the following restrictions:
    Current membership card in hand, valid for 2002 season
    One update per weekend
    Frequency support when Race-Scan is not in the vicinity
    Programming option is limited to current Uniden SC200 model
    Support for members good for transition period through 2002
    Further restrictions may apply(1-30-2002)
  • Hillenburg tests the #28 at Talladega: The #28 team was at Talladega on Tuesday for the first day of a two-day test session at Alabama’s famed 2.66-mile tri-oval and was able to get on the track at 12:10. Ricky Rudd, the driver of the No. 28 Ford, is recovering from off-season back surgery and is following doctors orders to stay off the racetrack as much as he can before the season gets under way in Daytona. Veteran driver Andy Hillenburg has stepped up to aid the Robert Yates team with pre-season testing.(Talladega Superspeedway)(1-30-2002)

    (1-29-2002)

  • M&M’s Vote: Masterfoods USA, a Mars Incorporated company, announced today a worldwide vote to determine the newest color “M&M’s” Chocolate Candies to be included in the “M&M’s” bag. Beginning March 6, 2002, candy lovers around the globe will take part in the Global Color Vote(TM) and choose from three colors — purple, pink or aqua — to determine which will join the select mix of colors in packs of the world’s favorite candy. The Global Color Vote(TM) is the largest promotion in the 61-year history of the “M&M’s” Brand. Voters will originate from a colorful mix of countries — ranging from Australia to the Ukraine — including nations in which no citizen has previously had the opportunity to cast a governmental vote. Residents from every region of the globe will be eligible to vote by logging on to www.mms.com, which will be accessible in more than 15 different languages beginning March 6, 2002. Voters in participating countries will also be able to vote through mail, telephone or at kiosks placed in select locations. The winning color will be announced in June 2002 at a gala event in New York City.

    Voters participating in the Global Color Vote will have the opportunity to sample each color before casting their vote. Specially marked packages, available at retailers worldwide, will contain purple, pink or aqua “M&M’s” Chocolate Candies. The “M&M’s” Global Color Vote is also the first global promotion in “M&M’s” Brand history. Participating countries will take part in a unified marketing campaign including advertising, public relations, direct marketing, retail promotions, sponsorship and Internet marketing. For more information, log on to “M&M’s” Global Color Vote online news bureau at: www.masterfoodsnews.com.(WirePix). Supposedly there will be four color schemes for the #36 M&M’s Pontiac in the early part of 2002, see the four schemes on my Paint Scheme Gallery(1-29-2002)

  • Ford – Decklid – Spoiler….problems? UPDATE more changes? Ford teams, who pleaded for a half-inch spolier reduction, were allowed to shave a quarter-inch off the height of the rear spoiler heading into Speedweeks 2002. Apparently, that has now caused more headaches than relief. A longtime Ford source told NASCAR.com Sunday morning that the quarter-inch provision has forced a vast change in the Taurus’ rear decklid, and therefore makes the provision moot. The source, which wished to remain anonymous, said that in order for Ford teams to fit the Taurus template, they have been forced to raise the rear deck lid one-half to three-quarters of an inch to meet the minimum height requirements for the rear spoiler. Therefore, in the end, the rear spoiler is actually higher than it was before the test. NASCAR vice president of corporate communications Jim Hunter said additional changes could be made once Speedweeks gets under way and that NASCAR had no plans to take any cars to a wind tunnel once Speedweeks began, primarily due to the difficulty in scheduling tunnel time.(full story at NASCAR.com)(1-27-2002)
    UPDATE – more rules changes? already? soon? hearing that NASCAR also changed the Dodge trunk lid as well a the Ford and that NASCAR has already issued templates to the Dodge teams for the changes. Also hearing NASCAR is cracking down on the side rear windows (opera windows) on the cars as some Ford teams were putting a curve in them (vertical) and supposedly NASCAR will remove the windows, lay them on a table and if they dont look flat, they will keep them.(1-29-2002)
  • update on the USS George Washington visit: Three drivers with NASCAR ties, two Indy Racing League stars, a world record-setting motorcycle drag racer and a NASCAR crew chief will spend 24 hours on the nuclear-powered aircrasft carrier USS George Washington this week. They’re part of a Langley Speedway-arranged trip to the warship as it undergoes flight training 100 miles off the North Carolina coast. Eddie Cheever, the 1998 Indy 500 winner, will make the trip, along with 2001 Indy Racing League champion Sam Hornish. Busch Series driver Andy Houston (he was a Winston Cup Rookie of the Year candidate last year), Craftsman Truck Series driver Rick Crawford and former Winston Cup Rookie of the Year (and former Busch and Craftsman driver) Jimmy Hensley are going. Tony Libarati, crew chief for Houston’s Busch team, also will go. Larry (Spiderman) McBride is the faste man on two wheels. He ride a nitro-powered Top Fuel bike in Pro Star, AMA and NHRA races. His world-record pass of 5.99 seconds at 243.00 mph came near Houston in the fall of 1999. It was the first sub 6-second pass in two wheel racing history. The group will leave Wednesday morning from Norfolk Naval Base for the half-hour flight out to the carrier. The group will spend 24 hours onboard, watching flight operations, meeting the crew, and touring the ship. They’ll be launched off the deck around noon on Thursday for the short flight back to Norfolk. This is the second time Langley Speedway has arranged an aircrasft carrier ride. In December of 1996, it took Terry Labonte, Jimmy Hensley, Steve Grissom, Randy LaJoie, Johnny Benson, Mike Wallace, Bobby Allison and NHRA racer Jim Yates for a three-day ride on the USS Enterprise.(Daily Press)(1-29-2002)
  • Special Daytona Show: Darrell Waltrip, Jeff Hammond and Larry McReynolds will be doing a nightly TV show in Daytona with host Bob Varsha. The show is titled Speedweek and will be shown on Speed Channel (which is currently SpeedVision). It airs Monday Feb 11 – Friday Feb 15 from 8:00 – 9:00pm/et.(Larry McReynolds site)(1-29-2002)
  • Interesting Concept: The Audible Alert system is the first ever-sound based track warning system. Using the latest wireless technology with small receivers in each car, an audible alert tone is used to notify every driver of hazardous track conditions at exactly the same time. The system also sends each driver an audible signal when the track goes green to drastically improve starts and re-starts. The main flagger or track official controls the signals to ensure everyone gets the proper alert each time. The Audible Alert system cannot absorb the energy of an extreme impact with the wall, nor can it save a driver from his worst fear, fire, but rather, the Audible Alert saves the driver in more ways than one. For more info, see thier site at www.invadertech.com or the PR at Racefan.com)(1-29-2002)
  • Craven and snowmobiles: The fifth annual Ricky Craven Snowmobile Ride for Charity was held on Saturday in Greenville, Maine and raised a record $114,640, topping the $82,310 raised in 2001. In five years the annual event has raised over $350,000 for its various charities which include the Marrow Foundation, Maine’s Children’s Miracle Network, the Make-A-Wish Foundation of New Hampshire, the Travis Roy Foundation, and Give Kids the World. Special thanks go to this year’s title sponsors, Arctic Cat, Wallace & Associates, and Tide Racing.(Ricky Craven Site)(1-29-2002)

    (1-28-2002)

  • Park to test Cup car: Steve Park said Saturday that he will drive a Winston Cup car this week for the first time since suffering a head injury in a crash during a Grand National race at Darlington Raceway on Sept. 1. Park will test at Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, NC this week to measure how well his vision has returned since the crash that ended his 2001 season prematurely. Kenny Wallace finished the season in the #1 Pennzoil Chevys and has been signed by Dale Earnhardt Inc. to drive it in 2002 until Park is ready to return.(ThatsRacin.com/ESPN-AP)(1-20-2002)
    UPDATE 2: Rain delayed Steve Park’s plans to test a stock car last Thursday, but crew chief Paul Andrews was optimistic after observing Park’s progress behind the wheel of a roadster and a Legends car earlier in January. “It wasn’t a big deal,” Andrews says. “We just wanted to see how consistent he could be, if he could turn sideways and whether the motion would make him dizzy. Is he ready for Daytona? Probably not. But it’s the first step of many to get him back into racing form.” Andrews says Park will try to test a stock car again this week.(Sporting News)(1-28-2002)
  • Nice Gesture: Jim Herrick, owner of Liberty Racing and Liberty Auto Group, of Vermillion, OH. presented to Reva and Kenny Irwin the 98 truck that Kenny Jr. drove in the Craftsman Truck Series in 1996 and 1997. Kenny won a pole at Richmond in 1996 and at Texas and Homestead in 1997, along with the Rookie of the Year Award. The truck will be on permanent display at the Kenny Irwin Jr. Memorial Campground, 25 miles east of Indianapolis, In. on I-70 at the New Castle, In. exit.(Kenny Irwin Jr Memorial Foundation Site)(1-28-2002)
  • Jarrett’s Dealership: A Ford dealership owned by NASCAR driver Dale Jarrett has bought land for a $15 million sales facility in Indian Trail. Dale Jarrett Ford Inc. will move to the U.S. Highway 74 site by summer 2003, shifting from its existing location on Skyway Drive in Monroe, says Kirk Stump, company president.(Business Journal)(1-28-2002)

 


(1-27-2002)

 

  • Benson special Chicago paint? UPDATE and: hearing that #10-Johnny Benson will have a special scheme for the Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland and the scheme will be unveiled in Feb or March 2002(1-26-2002)
    UPDATE: looks like the scheme will be Muppets / Fozzie Bear, plus Benson will run special Valvoline schemes as follows: Max Life – Texas – April 7; Eagle One -California – April 28; and Zerex – Kansas – September 29.(Johnny Benson Fanclub Site)(1-27-2002)
  • Simpson to return? Bill Simpson retired from the racing products company that bears his name last summer, when the controversy over the separated lap belt found in the wreckage of Dale Earnhardt’s fatal accident was at its height. But according to driver Rusty Wallace, a friend of Simpson’s, the safety pioneer might be ready to get back in the game. “He’s ramping up a little bit right now to get back in business,” Wallace said. “I’m pleading with him to get back in business. He was really mad at the world for a long time. I know he’s one of the experts out there. I expect Bill in another four or five months to come out with a new line of safety equipment, uniforms, helmets, shoes and the whole thing. As soon as that happens, I’m putting it right on.” Simpson’s company manufactured the belt that separated in Earnhardt’s crash, setting off a debate over whether the belt was installed improperly or failed on its own. He earned a degree of vindication over the offseason, when NASCAR mandated that all belts must be installed according to manufacturer’s instructions. “The thing that really killed him is that one of his best friends was Dale Earnhardt,” Wallace said. “And he was taking all that wrath with people telling him his product was bad, and it wasn’t. He and Dale drank beer together and hung out together. They loved each other. He wore everything Simpson had.”(Charleston Post and Courier)(1-27-2002)
  • Park to test at Charlotte UPDATE 2: CNN/SI’s NASCAR Plus show reported on Monday’s show that Steve Park, injured in a BGN accident at Darlington, will test a roadster at Lowes Motor Speedway to see how his progess is going. Park’s return could return anywhere between Texas and Daytona in July(1-14-2002)
    UPDATE: Park was excited about a trip he made to Lowe’s Motor Speedway at mid-month to turn laps in a Legends car under the eyes of crew chief Paul Andrews and neurosurgeon Dr. Jerry Petty. Park said he turned laps that were only a .10 of second off the track record for that division and had no problems with vertigo or depth perception. “The test went well,” Park said. “You don’t know what to expect when you get back in a car, but with Paul Andrews and the doctors there, I had the confidence to go out. I think it showed Paul that I was back. “It was the best thing the last 4 1/2 month that I’ve had, I can tell you that.” Park now wears glasses that currently correct his up close vision to 20/17 and he admits that things far away are still “just a little foggy.” But after that clears, he expects to go racing again quickly.(Anniston Star)(1-27-2002)
  • Robby Gordon in the desert UPDATE 3: Robby Gordon is driving in this weekend’s Parker 400 off-road race.(Arizona Republic), Parker 400, and will be driving a new Danny Porter built Truggy. Robby will be unable to attend the Parker 400 Poker Run this Saturday due to a previous NASCAR commitment in Daytona, but will be arriving in Parker late Saturday night. Robby will be driving the first half of the race, teamed with co-pilot/owner/designer Johnny Kaiser in the new #131 Truggy. Team Gordon is currently planning to race a limited off-road schedule as time permits, which includes the following races, San Felipe 250, Terrible Town 250 and 1 or 2 other races time permitting given Robby’s busy NASCAR schedule running in Cup.(Desert Racing) and more at www.off-road.com(1-25-2002)
    UPDATE: Robby Gordon’s plans have changed for the Historic Whiplash/SNORE Parker 400. Instead of co-driving a single vehicle in this race, Gordon is now going to be driving with his father [Bob] in their Class 1 Toyota, as well as driving Johnny Kaiser’s Class 1 Truggy. Gordon’s current plans are to start the race in the Toyota, and then at the halfway point, Bob Gordon will take over the driving duties in the Toyota, and Robby will take over the driving duties in the new Kaiser Truggy. This is the supposedly first time anyone has ever attempted to compete in two Class 1 vehicles in the same race.(Robby Gordon site)(1-26-2002)
    UPDATE 2: looks like Gordon finished 32nd of 97(Off Road)(1-27-2002)
    UPDATE 3: Gordon finished the buggy 12th in class. He had some problems early on (within the first 30 miles) that put him about 40 minutes down from the leaders. After the repairs were complete, he made up a considerable amount of time. Eventually, he suffered a few flat tires that he had to manually change and finished the 400 miles in 7 hours, 18 minutes and 49 seconds. Gordon was unable to drive the Kaiser truggy, because it also suffered problems within the early stages of the race.(1-27-2002)


    (1-26-2002)

  • Could be an Dale Earnhardt Memorial Bridge? UPDATE Bridge named for Earnhardt on the City Commission Meeting Agenda (Daytona Beach) for 7:00pm on Jan 23rd – A-1 Pedestrian Overpass Dedication – Resolution naming the Pedestrian Overpass which spans International Speedway Boulevard “The Dale Earnhardt Memorial Bridge.”(City of Daytona Beach Site)(1-23-2002)
    UPDATE: The new pedestrian overpass built to provide safe passage for fans attending events at Daytona International Speedway has been named to honor racing icon Dale Earnhardt. City commissioners unanimously approved a resolution Wednesday naming the overpass that spans International Speedway Boulevard The Dale Earnhardt Memorial Bridge. Construction of the $4.2 million pedestrian overpass should be completed by Friday, said Stan Lemke, the city’s Public Works director. The overpass was criticized by some who objected to $3.2 million in state money devoted to the project. The Speedway also contributed land valued at $1 million. Mayor Bud Asher announced that Daytona International Speedway officials agreed to pay the cost of putting plaques at both ends of the bridge to honor Earnhardt.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-24-2002) – image (1-26-2002)
  • Gaughan cancels Vegas: Brendan Gaughan [#62] has cancelled his NASCAR Winston Cup test next week at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Gaughan, who will be running a full NASCAR Craftsman Truck Seriesschedule this year, said he will not attempt to qualify for the March 3 UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 Winston Cup race at LVMS because his Orleans Racing team is concentrating on the truck program.(Las Vegas Sun)(1-26-2002)
  • Be an Original? UPDATE looks true – images: hearing that #40-Sterling Marlin will run an original Coor’s scheme for ten races in 2002(1-22-2002)
    UPDATE: got some images of the car, very nice looking, see my Paint Scheme Gallery for a few shots(1-26-2002)
  • Little E films a commercial for the Super Bowl: Anheuser-Busch is teaming up with Dale Earnhart Jr. to deliver an important message about designated drivers. This new commercial featuring Earnhardt Jr., set to debut February 3, during the television broadcast of Super Bowl XXXVI continues Anheuser-Busch’s commitment to helping prevent drunk driving. The 30-second ad shows the racing superstar serving as the designated driver and using his famous #8 Budweiser Chevy to drive a friend home. A recent national poll showed that 122 million Americans have either been a designated driver or have been driven home by one. Since 1982, Anheuser-Busch and its wholesalers have invested more than $375 million in alcohol education and awareness efforts to help fight underage drinking and drunk driving and to promote personal responsibility. For more information on these efforts and the progress being made, visit www.beeresponsible.com.(Yahoo Biz)(1-26-2002)
  • Marilyn Monroe scheme? UPDATE: hearing #9 Bill Elliott will run a Marilyn Monroe scheme of some sort this season, no idea where or why(1-22-2002)
    UPDATE: hearing the scheme will be run at the California Speedway Cup race(1-26-2002)
  • Jarrett special Chicago paint? UPDATE: hearing that #88-Dale Jarrett will have special schemes for the Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland and the scheme will be unveiled in Feb or March 2002(1-26-2002)
  • Burton the Announcer: #99-Jeff Burton will announce the 2002 True Value IROC Series along side Bob Jenkins and Scott Goodyear on ESPN and ABC. Burton will now be doing double and sometimes triple duty on race weekends driving the #99 CITGO Ford in Cup, the #9 GAIN Ford in the BGN and announcing the IROC races. Burton has been a participant the past four IROC seasons with one win in 1998 at Michigan. He also finished second overall in points that same year in the IROC series. However, this is Burton’s first stint as an announcer and he feels confident he can do the job. There will be 12 drivers representing four different race series in 2002 and that should make for some exciting racing. The combination of Burton, who will be representing NASCAR, and Goodyear, who will be representing the IRL, should also make for some colorful commentating.(Roush Racing PR)(1-26-2002)
  • Kenny and RPM 2 Night: #1 Pennzoil driver, Kenny Wallace, has signed up to be on ESPN2’s RPM 2 Night every Monday night with John Kernan and be the analyst for NASCAR racing on RPM 2 Night(Kenny Wallace Racing)(1-26-2002)
  • NASCAR and CASCAR? UPDATE: the Cayuga 2000 Speedway site is reporting that five 5 NASCAR Stars Officially Signed to race at the track during the final 2002 off weekend (June 28-30th) and Canada Day Weekend. An official press conference will be held sometime in Jan 2002. Supposedly the January 2002 issue of Performance Racing News it mentions Tony Stewart as confirmed, and either Ken Schrader or Michael Waltrip as other drivers being there(12-26-2001)
    UPDATE: Tony Stewart heads a list of five Winston Cup drivers who will take part in the CASCAR Canada Day Shootout at Cayuga Speedway near Hamilton on Sunday, June 30. Stewart will be joined by Johnny Benson, Ken Schrader, Matt Kenseth and Dave Blaney. Drivers will compete in CASCAR Late Models which will feature a unique “Twin 50 Plus 100” lap format which is expected to draw almost 20,000 fans from Toronto, Hamilton, Buffalo and throughout the Golden Horseshoe region of southern Ontario.(The Sports NetworkAND Cayuga and CASCAR were willing to confirm that Tony Stewart, Johnny Benson, Ken Schrader, Matt Kenseth and Dave Blaney are the NASCAR regulars who will race at Canada’s legendary 5/8-mile oval on one of the few ‘off-weekends’ of the Winston Cup schedule. The format of the race will be have two, 50-lap sprint qualifying heats, followed by 100 lap feature, for a total of 200 laps. According to Mitch Mortimer – whose MMC Group works in a marketing and promotional capacity for both CASCAR and Cayuga – a full house is expected for the event at the 18,000 seat track. And if sales warrant, temporary aluminum grandstands can be installed to accommodate the demand.(Inside Track Motorsports News)(1-26-2002)
  • Elliott tests a dirt car: Bill Elliot [#9 Dodge Dealer Dodge] arrived by helicopter at Atomic Motor Speedway [Knoxville, TN] on Monday morning [Jan 21st] to test out new motors, a new car, and a new dirt team formed late last year. When asked, Why Dirt Track Racing? Elliott replied, “I turned one lap last year in a GRT Dirt Late Model and I was Hooked, This is the Grass Roots of Racing; Where it all started.” When asked, Why Atomic? “I was here in the early seventies with Jody Ridley it was a great race track then and It’s even better today.” The 2002 Atomic Speedway Season Kicks Off March 29-30 (Easter Weekend) with a Nothing But Speed Weekend! It’s the First Annual Karaoke Café Thunder 100 paying 25 thousand to win, 15 hundred to start, in the Super Late Models and 3 thousand to win in the Steel Headed Late Models. A special treat is also on the board for race fans on Saturday Night as the Outlaw Winged Mini Sprints are expected to turn the track faster than the Late Models. The Big Question that still remains is whether the Number 9 of Awesome Bill will be one of the many cars expected to try to turn the high banks of Atomic in hopes of a starting position in Saturday’s Thunder 100. When Carson Branum was asked; Will he be back? He smiled in that normal Vestal Fashion and replied, “I can’t say for sure, but I can tell you if I find your car parked in my new Helicopter Parking Only on March 29-30th it want be towed, but It probably will be re-located when you return.”(see full story and images at the Atomic Motor Speedway Site)(1-26-2002)
  • Why no Benning? UPDATE: #84-Norm Benning was the only driver of the 30 reporting for testing this week who did not participate Tuesday. He could not go out on the track because he did not bring his head-and-neck restraint. Last season, NASCAR made mandatory the use of head-and-neck restraints for all drivers in its top three series – Winston Cup, Grand National and Trucks.(That’s Racin’)(1-16-2002)
    UPDATE: sources within Benning’s team say that Norm Benning also stated that he did not get on the track on Tuesday because he wanted to make sure he absolutely fit all the templates before going on the track. Not because he forgot his head & neck restraints(1-26-2002)
  • Award: The International Special Events Society (ISES) and Special Events Magazine awarded the 600 Festival Association’s slate of events the Gala Award for Best Fair or Festival worldwide. Accepting the award during the ceremony at the Phoenix Civic Center was Jay Howard Events, Inc., the Concord based company that produces these events. The 600 Festival includes three major, family oriented events promoting NASCAR racing at the famed Lowe’s Motor Speedway. The annual lineup has become known collectively as “The Month of Speed,” and includes the Air & Speed Show, the UAW-GM Teamwork Parade and Food Lion Speed Street. These happenings attract a half million people during the month of May with entertainment, celebrities, live music, exhibits and racing-related activities.(Jay Howard Events PR)(1-26-2002)

    (1-25-2002)

  • Earnhardt Jr’s Book: Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s first book, Driver #8, is now available. It is a behind-the-scenes look at Dale Jr.’s rookie season in Winston Cup. The project which was was started long before his father’s tragic accident at Daytona last February, and offers a glimpse at how Dale Jr. coped with the pressures of starting his Cup career as a much-hyped rookie driver in 2000. Dale Jr., with assistance from team publicist Jade Gurss, describes his year race-by-race, including his dramatic victories at Texas, Richmond and at The Winston all-star race. It also details the frustrations of a poor second half of the 2000 season and what is involved in a Winston Cup driver’s life away from the track. The book will make its debut on the New York Times Best Sellers list on February 3. “Driver #8” is 16th on the Times non-fiction list following its first (partial) week of sales.(ThatsRacin.com). See my Racing Bookstore page for more info(1-25-2002)
  • Indy 500/Coke 600 double: Besides Tony Stewart, who likely will hook up with Chip Ganassi for the second year in a row, Indianapolis 500 veterans Robby Gordon and John Andretti are eyeing the daily double by running the Indy 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowes Motor Speedway. Stewart placed sixth in the Indy 500 and third in the Coca-Cola 600 last year, completing all 1,100 miles. He clearly wants to do it again, and Ganassi said a deal is in the works.(Indianapolis Star), it has also been mentioned that Kevin Harvick could attempt both races(1-25-2002)

    (1-24-2002)

  • Scanners at ISC Tracks: International Speedway Corporation, parent company of Americrown Service Corporation, has entered into a marketing agreement that limits scanner related vendors to two companies at their tracks (Calif, Chicagoland, Daytona, Darlington, Homestead, Kansas, Michigan, Phoenix, Richmond, Rockingham, Talladega, Watkins Glen), Racing Electronics and Track Scan. This agreement leaves six scanner vendors in a position that they are not allowed on International Speedway Corporation property. Two of the other vendors are Race-Scan and Frequency Fan Club, not sure of the other four.(in part from a RACE-SCAN Communications PR/Site, see more there)(1-24-2002)
  • Marcis plans and Trickle to run #71 at the Rock: Dave Marcis will attempt to make one last start in his #71 Chevy before retiring as a driver, but he insists Marcis Auto Racing will continue forward in the Winston Cup Series. After Speedweeks, Marcis will become strictly a car owner. He’s already making plans for the next phase of his racing career. “I’ll hang around Winston Cup racing,” he said during the Winston Cup Preview Jan. 19. “I’ve got some plans to run Dick Trickle in a car at Rockingham and various other drivers throughout the year. If they’ve got the sponsorships and help pay the bills, we’ll be around.” Marcis will stay quite busy in “retirement.” He will continue to be the lead test driver for the International Race of Champions series and also do testing for select Winston Cup teams in addition to running a new business venture. Marcis said he’s leaning heavily on Richard Childress Racing for technical support to make the Daytona 500. His best chance to make the $12 million race is to post a fast lap in qualifying.(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(1-24-2002)
  • Another Wind Tunnel: A developer has bought 132 acres near the intersection of Laurens Road and Interstate 85 south of Greenville, SC and plans a research park that would include a $40 million wind tunnel that Clemson University would operate and make available to NASCAR race teams, the seller of the land said. For months, local business leaders have been working with Clemson to find a site for the proposed wind tunnel, which they hope is the start of making Greenville the research hub for the Southeast’s motorsports and automotive industries.(Greenville News)(1-24-2002)
  • Softwall News: Soft-wall technology for superspeedways could be as close as three years away, said Brian Barnhart, Indy Racing League vice president for racing operations. For nearly two years, the Indy Racing League has financed and participated in a soft-wall project at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, and Barnhart said Tuesday that the project is progressing well. Barnhart said the soft walls are a derivation of another layered system used on the inside of Turn 4 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 1998. Barnhart said that this system, though, has evolved beyond that. “We had our latest test on Friday at Nebraska,” Barnhart said during the Texas Motor Speedway 2002 Media Day. “We have made lots of gains and lots of progress. We are in the fine-tuning stages at this point in time.” The test on Friday was “IRL-15”, the 15th time an IRL car had been pulled into the test wall at various speeds and angles.(Star Telegram)(1-24-2002)
  • California Testing UPDATE:: #2-Rusty Wallace and #36-Ken Schrader are scheduled to test at California Speedway on Thursday, January 24, 2002(California Speedway PR)(1-19-2002)
    UPDATE: #12-Ryan Newman and #36-Ken Schrader will test on Jan 24th, 2002, not #2-Rusty Wallace as announced(California Speedway PR)(1-24-2002)
  • New Cup Team? Team Bristol Motorsports [#54 BGN] owner Rick Goodwin believes he’s close to landing primary sponsorship for driver Kelly Denton, and adds that they could run a handful of Winston Cup races later this year. Denton left Team Bristol in June of last year, but rejoined the team at Rockingham. Tony Lambert, Mark Martin’s former BGN crew chief at Roush Racing, has been brought on board.(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(1-24-2002)
  • ESPN and NASCAR: ESPN’s RPM2night will continue to be denied access to pre and post race on-track interviews and highlight footage of NASCAR Winston Cup and Busch Grand National events. In what started in 2000 with the announcement of a multi-million dollar TV deal between NASCAR, Fox and NBC, ESPN reporters have been denied broadcast credentials to the racing venues at the discretion of the current contracted broadcasters. Problems between the networks date back to the final race of the 2000 season at Atlanta Motor Speedway, when ESPN by contractual rights, denied FOX the ability to shoot trailer footage for the 2001 broadcasts. Prior to the comprehensive broadcasting contract, it was up to each individual facility to negotiate television rights. A majority of the tracks had deals with ESPN; a pioneer in motorsports television. RPM2night is not denied access to the tracks, RPM reporters can interview drivers and teams to gather information; they are just not allowed to broadcast or record footage from the track.(Motorsport.com)(1-24-2002)
  • #75/Oordt Team to Return? UPDATE 3 Denny Green buys in…Dallenbach back? former #75 Galaxy Motorosports Cup team owner Darwin Oordt said there is a chance he could field a new team with former Minnesota Vikings coach Dennis Green as his partner, perhaps as early as this season. ”Dennis and I became friends when I was in Minnesota,” Oordt said. ”He’s very interested in racing, and we’re trying to get things worked out to co-own a team.” Oordt was forced to fold his Winston Cup team last season after a major sponsorship fell through. When he was unable to field a car for the Daytona 500, Oordt was sued by his driver, Wally Dallenbach, for breach of contact. The legal battle remains unsettled. Dallenbach is seeking damages for what he calculates would equal a year’s lost earnings. Neither side will reveal figures in the suit, but it is believed to be in excess of $1 million.(Tennessean)(1-10-2002)
    UPDATE: Former Minnesota Vikings coach Dennis Green has formed a partnership with Darwin Oordt, owner of the dormant [was #75 Ford] Galaxy Motorsports Winston Cup team, made the partnership public Thursday. Their company will be called Denny Green Racing, LLC and the plans are for the team to start racing in May.(EPSN/AP)(1-20-2002)
    UPDATE 2: A team spokesman said Jan. 21 that it has had discussions with Dallenbach among other potential drivers. The team hopes to run engines built by Robert Yates and hopes to have sponsorship secured within 30 days.(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(1-24-2002)
    AND Oordt said he and Green are working on a potential sponsorship that would allow the team to race in either the Busch Series or Winston Cup, or perhaps both. They also have to hire a driver, crew chief and other personnel.(Tennessean)(1-24-2002)


    (1-23-2002)

  • Daytona to name ‘something’ for Earnhardt UPDATE 4: Daytona International Speedway is going name something after Dale [Earnhardt] — they just aren’t saying what it will be. It’s already been decided and it has the blessings of the Earnhardt family, as well. “After considerable input from fans and competitors, and with the support of the Earnhardt family, we have chosen a special way to celebrate the life and legend of Dale Earnhardt. It is our intention to make the announcement regarding our tribute during Speedweeks 2002.” David Talley, Director Corporate Communications, ISC(NASCAR.com)(12-16-2001)
    UPDATE: Rumor has it Daytona International Speedway may be planning to remember the late Dale Earnhardt with some type of permanent memorial — perhaps a statue — before this year’s Daytona 500. The permanent display was said to be, according to a source, “something all fans would have access to.” The official word is expected sometime next week with the ceremony possibly taking place the week leading up to the Feb. 17 race. Earnhardt is the winningest driver at Daytona, with more than 30 trips to Victory Lane when you add up wins in Winston Cup, Busch, Shootout and IROC events.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(1-15-2002)
    UPDATE 2: Nobody’s talking about it, but a currently active construction site adjacent to the entrance to Daytona USA, the interactive motorsports attraction located outside Turn 4 of Daytona International Speedway, has all the potential earmarks of the rumored “Dale Earnhardt Memorial” that may be unveiled during Speedweeks 2002. A circular set of footers about eight feet in diameter are located within the center of the construction zone and might be the pedestal for a rumored statue of Earnhardt. (NASCAR.com Buzz). NOTE: many readers have mentioned being at Daytona and seeing the construction and have heard that the site will be the Earnhardt tribute area.(1-20-2002)
    UPDATE 3: a few readers report that News Channel 2 daytona reported that the construction site will be an Earnhardt tribute and that they interviewed Glyn Johnson with the speedway. While sketchy on the details he said it would be “a larger than life, bronze statue, surrounded by a fountain, much like the one that sits in front of Daytona USA that honors the France’s”. Teresa Earnhardt was invovled in the planning of the tribute and it will be unveiled during Speedweeks(1-21-2002)
    UPDATE 4: The statue is being designed by John Lajba, the same sculptor who cast the bronze likeness of Bill and Anne France in 1994 that stands in front of Daytona USA. And a public document reveals a morsel more of details. Last month, the Speedway paid the city of Daytona Beach $375 for a building permit for a sculpture. On it, the sculpture is valued at $60,000.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-23-2002)
  • Andretti testing at Kentucky: #43-John Andretti and Petty Enterprises will test at Kentucky Speedway on Thursday Jan. 24, and Friday Jan. 25.(Kentucky Speedway PR)(1-23-2002)

    (1-22-2002)

  • #57 Team CLR withdraws from 500: #57 Team CLR owner Ted Campbell has decided not to enter the #57 Ford in the Daytona 500 for driver Derrike Cope. The team will test at Las Vegas for its next race attempt.(Team CLR site)(1-22-2002)
  • Ford Spoiler Decreased: NASCAR announced a ¼-inch decrease for the rear spoiler height on the Ford Taurus to be used in next month’s Daytona 500 Measurements for the rear spoilers on the Ford Taurus will now read at 6 ¼ inches tall by 57 inches wide. The past two weeks during Winston Cup Series testing at Daytona, Ford’s rear spoiler was 6 ½ inches tall. The Ford and Chevrolet teams now have the same measurements, while the Dodge and Pontiac teams measure at 6 ½ inches tall by 57 inches wide. NASCAR announced last November that modifications to the current aero-package might be necessary to assure parity amongst the various manufacturers. It was also announced that teams would be informed of these modifications prior to testing and could continue through the weeks leading up to the Daytona 500.(NASCAR PR)(1-22-2002)
  • Stars and Stripes: hearing Michael Waltip will once again run a Stars and Stripes scheme at Daytona in July(1-22-2002)
  • Motorsports Hall of Fame for Earnhardt: Stock car icon Dale Earnhardt, two-time Indy 500 champion Gordon Johncock, drag racing king Eddie Hill and pioneering open-wheel racer Gaston Chevrolet will lead a class of eight racing legends into the Motorsports Hall of Fame when the organization stages its annual enshrinement ceremony, June 12, 2002 at the State Theatre in Detroit. These four, along with racing engine designer Fred Offenhauser, sports car champion Brian Redman, international motorcycle road racing ace Eddie Lawson and air racer and Hollywood stunt pilot Paul Mantz, will join the 122 racers already enshrined in the Motorsports Hall of Fame. The Motorsports Museum & Hall of Fame is operated by the Motorsports Museum and Hall of Fame of America Foundation Inc., a non-profit corporation. The Motorsports Hall of Fame of America is located within the Novi Expo Center, I-96 at Novi Road (Exit162), in the Detroit suburb of Novi, Michigan.(Open Wheel Racing)(1-22-2002)
  • Drivers invited to visit the USS George Washington: On Jan. 30-31, for approximately 24 hours, the US Navy has invited Winston Cup, Busch and Craftsman drivers to visit the men and women of the aircraft carrier USS George Washington as it undergoes flight training off the coast of North Carolina. The invitation came to NASCAR after Langley Speedway — the Dodge Weekly Racing Series track in Hampton, Va. — heard that the GW wanted to host some drivers before heading to the Middle East. Langley did a similiar trip in December of 1996, taking several NASCAR drivers and an NHRA driver to the USS Enterprise as it sailed to Norfolk from Bermuda en route from the Middle East. Drivers will spend an hour or so in Norfolk on Jan. 30, then fly out andland on the deck of the GW. They’ll spend 24 hours aboard, watching daylight and nighttime flight operations from the “buzzards’ nest” and the flight deck itself. Around noon on the 31st, they’ll be catapulted off the deck and flown back to Norfolk. The lineup of drivers hasn’t been set, due to testing and pre-Daytona 500 obligations. Among those invited: Rick Mast, Brett Bodine, Joe Nemechek, Dave Marcis, Todd Bodine, Ricky Rudd, Ashton Lewis, Ward Burton and team owner Junie Donlavey. And Cup, Bush or Craftsman driver interested in making the 24-hour visit can go to the Langley Speedway site for contact info(1-22-2002)
  • Cope in the 24 hours of Daytona: Derrike Cope, winner of the 1990 Daytona 500, will complete the driver lineup for the Scuderia Ferrari of Washington Ferrari 360 GT at the 2002 Rolex 24 at Daytona. Cope has previous Daytona road racing experience as well, having finished fourth in class and 11th overall in the 1991 twice-around-the-clock race, driving a Chevrolet-Spice prototype for Tom Milner Racing. The addition of Cope give the Scuderia Ferrari of Washington team three Daytona champions in their Ferrari. Both Bill Auberlen and Cort Wagner are former winners at the Rolex 24. Auberlen in 1997 and 1998, and Wagner in 1999. The fourth driver is Costantino Bertuzzi, the 1999 Italian Touring Car Champion and a test driver for Ferrari. The 40th Anniversary of the Rolex 24 At Daytona will kick off the 2002 Rolex Sports Car Series season, as well as SpeedWeeks at Daytona International Speedway. The Rolex 24 At Daytona will be broadcast on Speedvision.(Grand American Road Racing Association Site)(1-22-2002)
  • Kmart in trouble? UPDATE 2 Bankruptcy: getting much email about Kmart’s financial woes and wondering how it will affect the sponsorship of the #26 and #66 Hass Carter Motorsports teams. Have NOT heard a thing about Kmart leaving now or in the near future, their contract with Hass Carter runs thru 2002. See Yahoo Biz for a story about Kmart: Kmart Shares at 36-Year Low; and see an image of the the #26 and #66 cars on the Paint Schemes Gallery for the image(1-17-2002)
    UPDATE: Kmart will continue its support of two Winston Cup cars in 2002 and will be an official sponsor of the Daytona 500, making the 102-year-old company the most supportive mass retailer of NASCAR. The two Kmart-sponsored cars will be prepared by Haas Carter Motorsports, which is owned and operated by Travis Carter. The two-car team features the #26 Kmart School Spirit Ford driven by newcomer Joe Nemechek and the #66 Kmart Ford driven by Todd Bodine. “We want to see Kmart take the checkered flag this season,” said Tom Lemke, Vice-President Marketing and Sales for Kmart. “Our customers love NASCAR racing and we are putting the power of the Kmart brand behind a program that will give them some great racing action.”
    Number 26 Kmart School Spirit Ford
    Kmart’s commitment to NASCAR’s millions of fans and their families is exemplified this year by the company’s School Spirit Program, which will be promoted through the #26 Kmart School Spirit Ford. With this new multi-million dollar fundraising opportunity for K-12 schools nationwide, Kmart plans to donate a minimum of $10 million to participating schools during the 2001-2002 school year. This year-round program turns eligible purchases made at Kmart into cash for schools – allowing children and teachers to focus on schoolwork instead of fundraising.
    Number 66 Kmart Ford
    The #66 Kmart Ford, driven by Todd Bodine, has been chosen to represent the brands that have made Kmart an American shopping icon for more than 100 years. Those brands NASCAR fans may see whiz by them at 180 mph this season include Martha Stewart Everyday, Joe Boxer, Route 66, Jaclyn Smith and of course the Blue Light Special, which will be the first paint scheme for the Daytona 500. Kmart and NASCAR go hand in hand. Geographically there is a Kmart store within five miles of every NASCAR Winston Cup racetrack. Kmart aggressively promotes its racing program through its network of more than 2,100 stores nationwide and through its Internet properties – the BlueLight.com online shopping site and the BlueLight $8.95 Unlimited Internet Service.
    Kmart Sponsors Daytona 500
    Kmart also is an official sponsor for the 2002 Daytona 500. As the “Official Retailer” of the Daytona 500, Kmart will have prominent signage throughout the track, visibility in the event program and other promotional opportunities. Kmart shoppers will even have a chance to win a trip to attend the race. As part of Kmart’s effort to reach a wider NASCAR audience in 2002, Kmart will not sponsor the Kmart 400. Instead, the company will focus its marketing efforts across the entire NASCAR schedule, rather than concentrating on just one race.(Golin/Harris PR)(1-19-2002)
    UPDATE 2: Kmart Corp. on Tuesday filed for bankruptcy protection, the largest retailer ever to do so, after a dismal holiday sales season and cutthroat competition from rivals Wal-Mart Stores and Target Corp. left the company strapped for cash. Troy, Michigan-based Kmart said its 2,114 stores remain open for now, but it will review their future by the end of April. Wall Street analysts have said Kmart needs to close around 300 to 400 stores.(Yahoo)
    AND Tuesday’s announcement that the Kmart Corp. has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy brought into question whether or not the move will affect Haas-Carter Motorsports, the NASCAR Winston Cup Series operation that fields two Kmart-sponsored Fords driven by [#66] Todd Bodine and [#66] Joe Nemechek. Team owner Travis Carter told NASCAR.com on Tuesday that he’s “cautiously optimistic” about the future of his two-car operation. Carter did confirm that Kmart was on schedule with their sponsorship dues at present, and that the company has informed him to continue on with business as usual. “We’ve made some progress and done some real good things for them,” Carter said. “I think last year we did real well for them. The thing that’s encouraging to me is that they’ve come outta the box with a stronger campaign than ever.” Kmart hopes to reorganize rapidly and emerge from Chapter 11 by 2003. Either way, Carter reiterated that he was told Tuesday morning to conduct business as he always has.(NASCAR.com)(1-22-2002)
  • PE in the wind: hearing Petty Enterprises [#’s 43,44,45] has a few cars at the N.A.S.A.’s Langley Research Center located in Hampton, VA today testing the a speedway car and a downforce car(1-22-2002)
  • New President/CEO: Jay Abraham has been named president and CEO of NASCAR Images, the video and film production and creative marketing joint venture between NASCAR Digital Entertainment and FOX Sports Ventures. Paul Brooks, vice president of broadcasting, NASCAR, and Larry Jones, chief operating officer, FOX Sports, made the announcement jointly today.. Abraham was formerly vice president of business development for HJ Heinz Company. He replaces Tom Grabowski who stepped down on November 15, 2001, to pursue expanded opportunities with Urban Sports, a company he recently founded. Abraham will be responsible for overseeing the strategic planning and day-to-day operations of NASCAR Images original programming, television production and corporate business development for NASCAR sponsors, teams, tracks and broadcast partners, in addition to the establishment and growth of home video production and distribution for NASCAR-related entertainment. NASCAR Images, located in Charlotte, N.C., is an original programming, video and film production, post-production and creative marketing company serving corporate sponsors, marketers and advertisers, as well as NASCAR.s drivers, teams, tracks and television partners. Currently NASCAR Images produces NASCAR This Morning and NASCAR Tech for Fox Sports Net and Inside Winston Cup for SPEED Channel.(NASCAR PR)(1-22-2002)
  • The Smithsonian and Motorsports: Body Dynamics Racing Bodies, Inc. and The Smithsonian Instititue in Wwashington, DC are working together to design a special motorsports display(s) that will be featured in The Smithsonian Institute’s Transportation Museum as well as be displayed in two other special venues in the future. The project remains a secret and the display will not be unveiled until the summer of 2003.(Body Dynamics Racing Bodies PR)(1-22-2002)
  • Yates cancels Atlanta test: The two-day test session scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday at Atlanta Motor Speedway with Robert Yates Racing and Ricky Rudd.s #28 car has been cancelled. The next scheduled NASCAR Winston Cup test is Feb. 19-20 with Ganassi Racing and the No. 41 car driven by Jimmy Spencer.(Atlanta Motor Speedway PR)(1-22-2002)

    (1-21-2002)

  • Biffle to run up to seven Cup races: Roush Racing’s [#16 Ford] Greg Biffle will compete in seven Cup events this year as he prepares to run for rookie-of-the-year honors in 2003. He’s scheduled to compete at Daytona and then at California in April but the rest of his Cup schedule is not set because he has no sponsor(Roanoke Times)(1-21-2002)
  • Pook’s son injured UPDATE: David Pook, the 30-year-old son of new CART president Chris Pook, was critically injured late Thursday when his NASCAR Southwest Tour stock car crashed in testing at Phoenix International Raceway. Pook suffered a broken vertebrae in his neck.(Indianapolis Star/SpeedVision)(1-20-2002)
    UPDATE: David Pook was released from Good Samaritan Hospital in Phoenix this afternoon after spending two days under observation after a crash during testing at Phoenix Thursday afternoon. Pook, the 30-year-old son of CART CEO Chris Pook, suffered a fracture of the second cervical vertebra during the accident, which is suspected to have been the result of a steering failure. Pook hit the first-turn fence at 150mph and was initially in critical condition, but was upgraded in subsequent days and was released Sunday. pook was using a unique and special seat that held in place during the complete impact, as well as the HANS Device that played a major role in Pook’s survival.(SpeedVision)(1-21-2002)
  • Harvick wins award: Because of Kevin Harvick’s performance under the trying circumstances, he was on Sunday named the winner of the 2001 Richard Petty Award as the National Motorsports Press Association’s Driver of the Year. Harvick, who turned 26 in December, is the first Winston Cup rookie to win the award.(ThatsRacin.com)(1-21-2002)

 


(1-20-2002)

 

  • #75/Oordt Team to Return? former #75 Galaxy Motorosports Cup team owner Darwin Oordt said there is a chance he could field a new team with former Minnesota Vikings coach Dennis Green as his partner, perhaps as early as this season. ”Dennis and I became friends when I was in Minnesota,” Oordt said. ”He’s very interested in racing, and we’re trying to get things worked out to co-own a team.” Oordt was forced to fold his Winston Cup team last season after a major sponsorship fell through. When he was unable to field a car for the Daytona 500, Oordt was sued by his driver, Wally Dallenbach, for breach of contact. The legal battle remains unsettled. Dallenbach is seeking damages for what he calculates would equal a year’s lost earnings. Neither side will reveal figures in the suit, but it is believed to be in excess of $1 million.(Tennessean)(1-10-2002)
    UPDATE: Former Minnesota Vikings coach Dennis Green has formed a partnership with Darwin Oordt, owner of the dormant [was #75 Ford] Galaxy Motorsports Winston Cup team, made the partnership public Thursday. Their company will be called Denny Green Racing, LLC and the plans are for the team to start racing in May.(EPSN/AP)(1-20-2002)
  • Park to test car: Steve Park said Saturday that he will drive a Winston Cup car this week for the first time since suffering a head injury in a crash during a Grand National race at Darlington Raceway on Sept. 1. Park will test at Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, NC this week to measure how well his vision has returned since the crash that ended his 2001 season prematurely. Kenny Wallace finished the season in the #1 Pennzoil Chevys and has been signed by Dale Earnhardt Inc. to drive it in 2002 until Park is ready to return.(ThatsRacin.com/ESPN-AP)(1-20-2002)
  • Elliott Iced Out: Former Winston Cup champion Bill Elliott didn’t attend the [Winston] Preview, citing inclement weather near his home in Blairsville, Ga., that prevented him from flying. Bobby Labonte, the 2000 Winston Cup champion, and Jeremy Mayfield completed their scheduled autograph sessions, then pitched in to sign for fans waiting in Elliott’s section of the coliseum.(Fayetteville Observer)(1-20-2002)

    (1-19-2002)

  • DW Honored: Representatives at the Nashville Sports Council announced that Darrell Waltrip would be named the Lifetime Achievement Award Winner during the 4th Annual O’Charley’s Dinner of Champions, set for February 7, 2002 at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel.(Nashville Sports Council Site for more info)(1-19-2002)
  • Sadler Video: #21-Elliott and #02-Hermie Sadler are participating in a video featuring Country Artist and family friend Don Cox.. There are several other special guests that will be there including Professional Wrestler Jeff Jarrett. The video is being shot Saturday night, January 19 at Brian’s Steak House and Lounge in South Hill, VA. The concert is sold out, but copies of the video can be ordered by contacting Judy Doyle at Sadler Fan Club. For info go to their site: sadlerfanclub.com(1-19-2002)
  • Lowes Motor Speedway – 19th Annual UAW-GM Motorsports Media Tour: see info on the tour at the LMS Site
    Notes and Quotes – From Tuesday, January 15
    Notes and Quotes – From Wednesday, January 16
    Notes and Quotes – From Thursday, January 17
    Notes and Quotes – From Thursday, January 18(1-16/19-2002)
  • Rusty re-ups thru 2004: #2-Rusty Wallace says he has signed a contract extension that will keep him at Penske Racing South through 2004(News and Record)(1-19-2002)
  • California Testing: #2-Rusty Wallace and #36-Ken Schrader are scheduled to test at California Speedway on Thursday, January 24, 2002(California Speedway PR)(1-19-2002)
  • Lakeland Testing: some teams/drivers tested at Lakeland Speedway in FL this week. John Andretti tested the #43 and #45 Dodges. Eliott Sadler tested the #21 Ford with help from Mark Martin. #10-Johnny Benson was scheduled to test there but had to cancel and rescheduled their test for Feb. 4 and 5. Roush CTS driver Jon Wood spent some time testing with Mark Martin. Wood tested for two days in Lakeland before heading to the mandatory testing sessions at Daytona this weekend(various PR’s)(1-19-2002)
  • Motorsports Schooling: Mark Davis, the former director of the motorsports program at Catawba Valley Community College, has formed a school of his own. Carolina Motorsports Tech Center began classes two weeks ago in a Conover business park (in North Carolina). Students get instruction on building cars that will compete in NASCAR contests and other races. There are no prerequisite courses for the students. This week, eight students busied themselves on a ProCup Series racer in the 15,000-square-foot facility on FedEx Road. Carolina Motorsports offers two programs: a motorsports technology series of 10 classes and a team- concept series in which the students enter a school-owned car in sanctioned dirt-track races. This year, the team will compete in USAR’s Southern ProCup Series races. The closest of those races are held at Hickory Motor Speedway. Last year, Catawba Valley’s Team Concept team placed 15th in the USAR standings. Jon Kerley, who is now lead instructor at Carolina Motorsports, drove the racecar for Catawba Valley when he was an instructor there. Carolina Motorsports will also call its team Team Concept. In the Carolina Motorsports program, students will spend a year completing both courses of study. Tuition and other fees add up to about $10,000 for the year of instruction. Three colleges in the region have programs designed to train technicians and others in the fine points of stockcar racing. They are the program Davis left at Catawba Valley, a racing program at Rowan-Cabarrus Community College in Salisbury and one at Mitchell Junior College in Statesville. Also, NASCAR Technical Institute, a $12 million, 40,000-square-foot vocational school planned in Mooresville, is scheduled to begin classes this summer. Initial classes have about 30 students. Another seven have signed up for classes that start in March, Davis says. He would like to see Carolina Motorsports train as many as 120 students each year.(Business Journal), for more info, see my Racing Schools/Jobs page. No contact info or a website known yet(1-19-2002)
  • Sadler now part of the Family: #21-Elliott Sadler is the latest addition to the Coca Cola Family Of Drivers. Which includes: #1-Steve Park; #9-Bill Elliott; #15-Michael Waltrip; #18-Bobby Labonte; #28-Ricky Rudd; #20-Tony Stewart; #43-John Andretti; #45-Kyle Petty; #88-Dale Jarrett #99-Jeff Burton.(Coca Cola Racing Family)(1-19-2001)
  • Honors: At the 19th Annual UAW-GM Motorsports Media Tour was was the announcement of the five winners of the annual Miller Motorsports Journalism Awards of Excellence in honor of Russ Catlin. This year’s winners were Godwin Kelly (Daytona Beach News Journal) in the print journalism daily class, Mike Hembree (The Sporting News) in the print journalism national category, Ryan McGee (Totally NASCAR) for national broadcast journalism, Joe Dodd (Game Day Productions) for local broadcast journalism and Bill Anderson (Winston Cup Scene) in the photojournalism category.)Notes and Quotes – From Thursday, January 18)(1-19-2002)

    (1-18-2002)

  • ET Phone Bristol? UPDATE 4: hearing the Richard Childress Racing Cup cars, #29-Harvick, #30-Green and #31-Gordon (yes Gordon is listed) will run a 20th Anniversary of ET paint scheme at Bristol in 2002, not sure which Bristol, the 1st or 2nd event(11-10-2001)
    UPDATE: ET will be re-released on April 1, 2002 for its 20th Anniversary so I imagine it’ll be the spring race(11-11-2001)
    UPDATE 2: now hearing (ironically) that the ET schemes will run on the #24-Jeff Gordon and #31-Robby Gordon cars –
    BUT am now hearing the #30 Green and #31 Gordon E.T. Paint schemes have been cancelled and that #29 Harvick will carry the special ET paint for the re-released movie(11-27-2001)
    UPDATE 3: hearing that the car and scheme may be reveiled at the Winston Preview this weekend(1-18-2002)
    UPDATE 4: This Friday, GM Goodwrench Service, in conjunction with Universal Studios Consumer Products Group, Richard Childress Racing Enterprises, Inc., and Action Performance Companies will celebrate the 20th anniversary of E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial by unveiling a pair of specially painted NASCAR stock cars at the Richard Childress Racing shop in Welcome, NC. In celebration of the 20th anniversary of Steven Spielberg’s timeless and beloved classic, Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment will re-release E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial nationwide on March 22, 2002 in a new version along with never-before-seen footage, state-of-the-art computer-generated enhancements and a digitally remixed soundtrack. E.T. will celebrate his 20th anniversary by spending two days as a passenger on a NASCAR® stock car on March 23rd and 24th at Bristol Motor Speedway during two of the season’s most anticipated racing events. E.T. will appear on the flanks of two RCR NASCAR cars in consecutive races; first, on the red and black #29 GM Goodwrench Service/Action car during Saturday’s BGN race, and then on the blue and black #29 GM Goodwrench Service car for the Winston Cup event on Sunday. The two cars, to be driven by 2001 BGN champion and Winston Cup Rookie-of-the-Year Kevin Harvick, will be first unveiled to the public at the RCR race shop as part of the Lowe’s Media Tour, and then they will be on display from 8:30am until 6:00pm/et time at the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Winston-Salem, N.C. Team owner Richard Childress and Harvick will also be on hand to meet the press at the RCR unveiling. As part of the E.T. 20th Anniversary celebration, Action Performance has been licensed to produce collector merchandise, including die-cast racing replicas, which will be available to consumers through Action’s extensive network of distribution channels.(Action Performance PR), Paint Schemes Gallery for a image of the BGN and CUP diecast car(1-18-2002)
  • Rusty and Andy test Spolier: With permission from NASCAR, #2-Rusty Wallace and #28-Andy Hillenburg (subbing for Ricky Rudd) made three more runs once testing concluded at 5:00pm. The teams wanted to find out what it would take to speed up their Tauruses. After one lap around the track, the two teams took one-quarter inch off the rear spoiler. Then, after another lap, the same amount was taken off again. Wallace said he was a little disappointed with the results. “We picked up 3.3 tenths of a second, I was hoping we would pick up four,” Wallace said afterwards. “NASCAR thought it would pick up five tenths.” Currently, the Ford spoiler is 57 inches wide and six-and-a-half inches tall. Dodges have the same size. Chevrolets have a 57-inch by six-and-a-quarter inch spoiler.(NASCAR.com)(1-18-200)
  • Sony and the #12 continue: Sony Electronics television marketing group and Penske Racing announced the continuation of their NASCAR Winston Cup sponsorship with the #12 Alltel Ford and rookie-of-the-year candidate Ryan Newman. Newman¹s new ride will carry the FD Trinitron® WEGA® (pronounced, “VAY-GA”) television branding on its lower rear quarter panel, while another unit of Sony consumer digital photo printers, will join the fold and adorn the rear decklid with a Print By Sony logo. Entering the second year of this sponsorship, Sony¹s relationship with Penske Racing will once again include a special race during the 2002 season where the car will feature a paint scheme highlighting the Sony FD Trinitron WEGA and Print By Sony logos. For the third year in a row, Sony will continue the Sony TechPit, a 60-by-80-foot mobile road show designed to give fans a front-row seat for an interactive look at the latest products in home entertainment, digital imaging, car audio and personal computers. ..It features a fast-moving sensory experience, giving fans the opportunity to interact with Sony products and enjoy the thrills of WEGA televisions and home theater demonstrations in Dolby Digital surround sound. The exhibit will also include computer-simulated races, numerous digital photo printers that race fans can use to print their photos while at the race track, a Sony showcar and feature personal appearances by Ryan Newman at selected events.(Co-Pilot PR), see my Paint Schemes Gallery for an image of the car(1-18-2002)
  • Atwood in the #19 for the Shootout? UPDATE Leffler in #7? Rumor has it that Casey Atwood [who now drives the #7 Sirius Dodge] will be in the #19 Dodge for the Bud Shootout, NASCAR’s 70-lap non-points Budweiser Shootout event for 2001’s Bud Pole winners on Feb. 10 at Daytona. Atwood he won his first career pole at Phoenix International Raceway last fall. Jeremy Mayfield who is the regular driver of the #19, after winning four poles in 2000, failed to win one in 2001 and is ineligible for the event.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(1-17-2002)
    UPDATE: Casey Atwood will compete in his first Budweiser Shootout in February. The 70-lap race, scheduled Feb. 10, has a record 23 drivers eligible. The 21-year-old Atwood got an invite after winning the pole at Phoenix last season. “I’ve always watched that race,” said Atwood. “Most of the time it’s all the best people in that race. It’s a great honor for me.” Atwood earned the pole in the #19 car, now driven by Jeremy Mayfield. Atwood now drives the #7 Dodge but will wheel the #19 once again that day.(Daytona Beach News JournalAND hearing Jason Leffler, who won a Cup pole in 2001 and is not in the Cup series in 2002 but with the #2 Ultra Motorsports CTS team may drive the #7 Dodge in the race(1-18-2002)
  • Million Dollar Scheme: DeWalt and driver Matt Kenseth will have a Million Dollar Challenge paint scheme on the #17 Riush Racing Ford as Kenseth tries for the Winston No Bull 5 Million in Las Vegas on March 3rd. See my Paint Schemes Gallery for the image. DEWALT Power Tools is preparing to introduce the promotion that will leverage their presence in NASCAR racing and in the Power Tool industry in 2002 and beyond. The DEWALT MILLION DOLLAR CHALLENGE will allow tool users everywhere to drill screws for a million dollars. Each year DEWALT has been in racing, fans across America have participated in the DEWALT CHALLENGE. Developed in the spring of 1992 by members of the DEWALT Marketing Team, the DEWALT CHALLENGE revolutionized event marketing within the Power Tool industry and has become a fixture at every DEWALT event since its inception. This year, DEWALT plans to elevate the stakes. The DEWALT MILLION DOLLAR CHALLENGE will launch in the city known for its high stakes, Las Vegas, the same time DEWALT Racing’s driver Matt Kenseth will battle for the Winston Million, on the track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The course of the challenge will last for approximately six months throughout the prime builder’s season. Contenders will have over 300 opportunities to take the challenge at DEWALT events throughout the United States as they vie for the chance to win a million dollars. Qualifying events will be held at various power tool distributors, on residential and commercial job sites, and at various NASCAR Winston Cup races. Throughout the course of the events, contestants will also be eligible to win one of 16 Chevrolet Utility vehicles, over $50,000 worth of DEWALT power tools and accessories, one of four Bombardier ATVs, and various other DEWALT prizes. Participants with the fastest times will advance to one of 16 regional events held at Chevrolet Truck dealerships. Regional winners will then advance to the DEWALT MILLION DOLLAR CHALLENGE finals in Phoenix, AZ. The sixteen finalists will win an all-inclusive trip to Phoenix International Raceway during the NASCAR Winston Cup weekend to compete for the chance to win the grand prize of one million dollars.(DEWALT Racing PR)(1-18-2002)
  • TV Show Returns: Allen Bestwick, Johnny Benson, Ken Schrader, and Michael Waltrip are headed back to the SpeedChannel (formally Speedvision) on Feb. 18 with the return of Inside Winston Cup Racing.(Caledonian-Record)(1-18-2002)
  • Kraft Foods and Roush Racing Launch Sponsorship: Roush Racing announced that eight Kraft brands have become associate team sponsors on all five Winston Cup cars in the Roush stable, as well as one Busch series car. Kraft will launch its racing program in Daytona as the primary sponsor of Mark Martin’s #6 Kraft Ford Taurus in the pre-season Budweiser Shootout on February 10. All eight of the participating Kraft brands will make their debut – through signage on the car – as Martin kicks off the program. Race fans will have Roush drivers and Kraft brands to root for once the official racing starts. Brand logos will be positioned prominently on the car of each respective driver. Mark Martin’s #6 Ford will include Maxwell House Coffee as an associate sponsor in the regular Winston Cup schedule. Jeff Burton’s #99 Ford features Velveeta, while Matt Kenseth’s #17 Taurus features Kraft Singles, Miracle Whip Salad Dressing and Kraft Mayonnaise as associate sponsors. Kurt Busch’s #97 Ford brandishes the Tombstone Pizza brand as an associate sponsor and Greg Biffle’s #16 Winston Cup ride and #60 BGN Ford highlights the Taco Bell Home Originals brand as an associate sponsor.(PR), see my Paint Schemes Gallery for a couple images of the car/scheme – links fixed(1-18-2002)
  • #12 adds Turtlewax: Turtle Wax, the most recognized name in the car care products industry announced a three-year agreement to become an associate sponsor of Penske Racing’s #12 Alltel Ford NASCAR Winston Cup entry driven by Ryan Newman. In aligning itself with one of NASCAR’s top teams in Penske Racing, Turtle Wax, Inc. has reinforced their position as the world’s industry-leader in the production of automotive waxes, polishes and car wash products.(Co-Pilot PR)(1-18-2002)
  • Schrader and Busch to race in Arizona: Ken Schrader [#36 M&M’s Pontiac] is entered in the NASCAR Winston West and Southwest Series doubleheader in two weeks at Phoenix International Raceway. Winston Cup second-year driver Kurt Busch [#97 Rubbermaid Ford] will join Schrader in the Southwest race. Schrader has also entered the Jan. 26-27 Early Thaw series at Central Arizona Raceway.(Arizona Republic)(1-18-2002)
  • Another Mears in NASCAR: Roger Mears, former off road racing champion and brother of four-time Indy 500 winner Rick Mears, has gone to work for Ganassi as operations director for Ganassi’s stock car team.(Daytona Beach News Journal), Roger’s son Casey is driving in the BGN for Welliver-Jesell Motorsports as driver of the #66 Phillips Dodge(1-18-2002)
  • Penske 3D: 3D Systems Corp. announced it has joined forces in a technology and marketing alliance with Penske Racing for its NASCAR Winston Cup programs. Penske Racing uses 3D Systems solid imaging technology to build prototype parts for Winston Cup Series cars driven by #2-Rusty Wallace and #12-Ryan Newman. The process enables Penske engineers to produce new parts easily and quickly from computer-aided design (CAD) data — a necessity for making quick adjustments to improve the performance of their cars between racing events. As part of the marketing alliance, Penske uses an SLA(R) 5000 system and a ThermoJet(R) solid object printer from 3D Systems. The machines, in use and on display at Penske Racing headquarters in Mooresville, N.C., create concept models, visual aids and wind tunnel models, as well as aid in the production of final assemblies fitted on the racecars.(Business Wire)(1-18-2002)

    (1-17-2002)

  • Cup Testing at Daytona is OVER – Wallace fastest Thursday: The second wave of Winston Cup testing wrapped up on Thursday and Mike Wallace, driving the #33 Andy Petree Racing Chevy, was the fastest with a lap of 184.302mph turned in the afternoon drafting session. Wallace will be making an attempt to qualify for the 44th annual Daytona 500 on Feb. 17, but the team is still seeking a sponsor. He believes the team’s performance during the test will help in that pursuit. “There was a couple of (sponsors) here (Tuesday) that say they are interested in something,” Wallace said. “But as Andy has and myself and the team, we’ve heard that before.” Wallace will have a hectic schedule during Speedweeks 2002. He’ll compete in the Feb. 15 Florida Dodge Dealers 250 CTS race driving for [#52] Kenny Schrader. He’ll race his in the EAS/GNC Live Well 300 in a car owned by himself and Fred Biagi and he’ll take a shot at making the field for the Daytona 500 with APR. Beyond Daytona, Wallace says the only thing solid in his schedule are about 10 BGN races.
    Rounding out the top-five speeds were #9-Bill Elliott (184.298), #41-Jimmy Spencer (184.222), #18-Bobby Labonte (184.207) and #17-Matt Kenseth (184.185). All of those speeds were posted during Thursday’s afternoon drafting session.
    Excluding speeds from the final drafting sessions from each wave Winston Cup testing, Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate Jimmie Johnson, in the #48 Lowe’s Chevy, posted the best one-lap qualifying speed with a lap of 183.816mph.(DIS PR).
    See my 2002 Daytona 500 Testing Session 2 page for speeds of the week (will post more later as I get them compiled)(1-17-2002)
  • #68 News: TWC Motorsport Ltd. confirmed today that driver Anthony Lazzaro will not be with the team for the 2002 Winston Cup Series, opting instead for a full time ride in the IRL series. Team Owner Tom Coleman stated that he and Lazzaro had discussed the upcoming season and had mutually agreed that it was in Lazzaro’s best interest for him to pursue his opportunities in the IRL. Coleman also stated that Lazzaro is a talented driver and wishes him nothing but the best with his new team. TWC Motorsport Ltd. is actively talking to a number of drivers to pilot their #68 Chevy in the 2002 season. The team has yet to land primary sponsorship for the 15-event schedule it intends to run this year; however, Coleman is confident a marketing partner will emerge from the myriad of contacts that will be able to take advantage of the opportunities TWC Motorsport Ltd. offers. The team continues moving forward with its research and development program having just returned from a very encouraging wind tunnel test at Langley Air Force Base. “From a technical standpoint, our team is ready to compete,” Coleman said. When everything is all worked out with sponsorship and driver, we will have top-flight equipment on the track.” The team is looking forward to a March 3rd Las Vegas premiere.(TWC Motorsport Ltd PR)(1-17-2002)
  • No Brack at the Daytona 500? Kenny Brack’s testing session this week at Daytona is apparently as close as the CART star is going to get to running in this year’s Daytona 500 according to team owner Chip Ganassi. Ganassi said that it appears that the funding will not allow him to run in the Feb. 17 race. “I think the point there is that the business is tightening up and we had high hopes of finding the money for that but it doesn’t seem to be coming,” Ganassi said Thursday. “I don’t foresee that happening and it’s too bad because we thought Daytona was a place where he might do well.” The team’s managing director Mike Hull said Thursday that all hope had not been lost for the Brack Daytona effort, but that it indeed all depends on the financing that Ganassi said is unlikely to appear(SpeedChannel/SpeedVision)(1-17-2002)
  • Kmart in trouble? getting much email about Kmart’s financial woes and wondering how it will affect the sponsorship of the #26 and #66 Hass Carter Motorsports teams. Have NOT heard a thing about Kmart leaving now or in the near future, their contract with Hass Carter runs thru 2002. See Yahoo Biz for a story about Kmart: Kmart Shares at 36-Year Low; and see an image of the the #26 and #66 cars on the Paint Schemes Gallery for the image(1-17-2002)
  • Park Comments: Steve Park comments from the Steve Park Site – “Now for some of the rumors, this is what has been happening the past few days. I have been cleared by Dr. Buckley at Duke University. My vision is 95% and with glasses, yes glasses, it is 100%. Since the vision is cleared up, I went to Lowe’s Motor Speedway and tested in several types of cars thanks to Humpy Wheeler and his staff. Paul Andrews was there along with Dr. Jerry Petty from Carolina’s Medical Center. The testing went very well. There was no vertigo, no problems with depth perception, no g-force loading or unloading. I have to say it was good to be in a race car again. I look forward to getting back in the Pennzoil car and testing in a week or two. Our goal is to go to Daytona, but if we don’t make that race, it will be shortly thereafter.”(1-17-2002)
  • Rudd Feeling Fine: Ricky Rudd says he feels 100%, however is following doctors orders to stay off the racetrack as much as he can before the season gets cranked up and hopefully he’ll never have a recurrence of that injury. Rudd is giving his back time to heal so he can be back in the car for Daytona. The Havoline Taurus driver says he has only a half-inch scar where doctors made a small incision to insert fiber-optics to repair the damage. Rudd says he walked into the hospital hurting and four hours later he walked out not hurting, other than some muscle tightness…and that “I actually could have gotten in a race car that afternoon if he had to…I felt that good…much, much better”.(PRN’s Garage Pass)(1-17-2002)
  • NASCAR Chooses a Black Box: The Witness, a black box made by a Salt Lake City company, was selected by NASCAR to record all crash data this season as the sport continues its push for improved safety measures. Independent Witness Inc. will provide the incident data recorders, commonly referred to as black boxes, that will be installed in all cars competing in NASCAR-sanctioned events. The model selected is called “The Witness” and it is intended to help officials understand what happens during a wreck.(That’s Racin’/AP)(1-17-2002)
  • Wendell Scott honored: The family of the late Wendell Scott was honored last week at a banquet hosted by the Association of Minorities in Motorsports. Scott is the only black driver to win a race in NASCAR’s top series. Two years ago he was inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame. The Association of Minorities in Motorports is a Greensboro, S.C.–based group that promotes minority participation in racing by encouraging entrepreneurial, educational and other opportunities for minority communities. Proceeds from the Scott banquet go toward the group’s mobile museum project.(Tennessean)(1-17-2002)
  • Safety Update: NASCAR’s new research and development operation, which grew out of safety concerns raised by crashes in which four of its drivers have been killed over the past two seasons, has already outgrown its original home in Conover, NC. The operation, being led by former Winston Cup series director Gary Nelson who now is NASCAR’s managing director of competition, will move this year to a larger building near the Concord Regional Airport. The Concord facility, which NASCAR is under contract to purchase, began as a shop for a new Winston Cup operation that never got off the ground. NASCAR also has an agreement to buy several acres of land surrounding the facility for expansion. Safety issues were the primary topic as Pyne, Nelson and other senior officials from stock-car racing’s sanctioning body met with reporters on the UAW-GM Motorsports Media Tour hosted by Lowe’s Motor Speedway on Wednesday. Pyne said NASCAR has hired a full-time crash investigator and established a process for investigating on-track incidents. Vehicles racing in NASCAR’s top three national series, the Winston Cup, Grand National and Truck series, must carry crash data recorders this year. A medical board has also been appointed to draw up standards for medical facilities at tracks where NASCAR’s national touring series compete. Three medical liaisons have been hired to see that these standards are being met as well as to coordinate care along with local medical personnel hired by the tracks in the event drivers are injured. NASCAR has approved the use of a new driver’s seat developed by PPI Motorsports that incorporates composite materials to make the seat stronger, and is working along with other seat companies to develop stronger seats made of aluminum. Studies of the restraint systems used in NASCAR race vehicles continue, and Pyne said it is “highly likely” that more rules modifications in that area will be forthcoming early in the 2002 season. John Darby, the former competition director in the Grand National series, has replaced Nelson in that role for the Winston Cup series, allowing Nelson more time to work on issues regarding safety and competition through the new R&D operation. Once the Concord facility is open, it will have its own machine shop as well as the capability to do tests on full-size and scale model cars and on computer simulations. NASCAR also is continuing work on energy-absorbing materials for walls and on developing design and construction elements for race vehicles to make them safer, Pyne and Nelson said. A test of an energy-absorbing barrier is set for Friday, in fact, and safety expert Dr. John Melvin met with Winston Cup drivers testing in Daytona on Tuesday to provide them with updates on the latest developments in the area of safety.(That’s Racin’)(1-17-2002)
  • Some Yarn in the Wind: While other members of the Bam Racing [#49] team were hammering and turning wrenches on Shawna Robinson’s Dodge, crew chief Eddie Sharp was finishing equally-important work with a ball of yarn. As the team thrashed to find every ounce of speed from the car during a three-day test session at the Daytona International Speedway, Sharp was hoping his ball of yarn would provide valuable answers. He cut the yarn into small pieces then he attached them all around the bottom of the car. The car was equipped with cameras under the car and the hope was they would catch the way the yarn flapped in the air as Robinson drove 181 mph around the track. “Sometimes you can see how the air is moving under the car and what you need to do to make it better,” Sharp said. “Right now, this is the easiest way.”(Augusta Chronicle)(1-17-2002)
  • Thursday AM Speeds – Mikey fastest again: #15-Michael Waltrip was the fastest Thursday morning with a speed of 183.255mph, #25-Jerry Nadeau was 2nd fastest at 183.139 with #7-Casey Atwood 3rd in a Dodge at 183.113. Fastest Pontiac was #10-Johnny Benson who was 6th fastest at 182.135. Fastest Ford was #28-Andy Hillenburg who was 18th fastest at 181.196.
    See my 2002 Daytona 500 Testing Session 2 page for speeds of the week or ThatsRacin.com for this morning speed list)(1-17-2002)


    (1-16-2002)

  • Tide and Craven extend with PPI: Tide and PPI Motorsports jointly announced today they have renewed Tide’s primary sponsorship of the #32 Tide Ford in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series through 2004. In conjunction, PPI Motorsports has also extended its contract with Ricky Craven to drive the #32 Tide Ford through 2004. Having just concluded its second year in Winston Cup competition, the PPI Motorsports Tide Racing program has earned its first win (57 starts), its first pole (53 starts), four top fives and eight top tens. The team’s first win also marked the first career victory for Craven, who finished the 2001 season ranked 21st in points and was named “Comeback Driver of the Year” by The Sporting News.(PPI Motorsports PR)(1-16-2002)
  • #14 Changes? UPDATE: hearing that #14 A.J. Foyt Racing Team/General Manager Tommy LaMance and the team have parted ways(1-15-2002)
    UPDATE: Effective immediately, Tommy LaMance has left his team manager post at A.J. Foyt Racing to pursue other opportunities in the sport.(Foyt Racing PR/ignition, inc.)(1-16-2002)
  • Melling testing but needs sponsor for the 500 UPDATE sponsor for the Daytona 500: Mark Melling, owner of the #92 Melling Racing team since the death of his father, Harry, in 1999, said Monday that the team is in Daytona with driver Robert Pressley for what could be a make-or-break series of test sessions through Wednesday. With no major sponsorship secured and a race shop that has been trimmed back to just four employees, Melling hopes to show perspective sponsors that Melling has a car worth backing on race day. Melling said that it could take as much as a top-10 showing in practice for the week for it to be worth the time, energy and money needed to put together a one-race deal for Daytona. Pressley will be driving the same Dodge Intrepid this week that Stacy Compton qualified on the outside front row and finished 10th with last February at Daytona. Melling is running his Daytona hopes on a shoestring, an “ultra-budget, budget program,” he said. Regardless of his car’s showing this week, he’s still going to need some sponsorship help to run the 500. Melling said that he’s unable to justify pulling money out of the family business to run a race car in these challenging economic times. Regardless of whether or not Melling can pull together an 11th-hour one-race deal for Daytona, the long-range future of the racing team that has fielded a car in the Daytona 500 annually since 1982, is still uncertain at best. Should the Melling Racing Winston Cup effort dissolve, don’t look for Melling to try to become a major player in a lesser racing series such as the BGN or the CTS.(Michigan Live)(1-16-2002)
    UPDATE: Mark Melling, confirmed today his team’s plans to compete in the 2002 Daytona 500, with sponsorship coming from BrandSource. This marks the 21st year of competition in the famed race for Melling Racing, and the first year of competition for sponsor BrandSource, a buying group of home appliance, electronics and furniture stores. “We are thrilled to be part of NASCAR, and to team with Mark Melling and Melling Racing” said Bob Lawrence, Executive Director of BrandSource. “Mark and his team have a long history of success and being tough competitors. This is just like our BrandSource stores. We have been in business for a long time, and compete everyday in the tough appliance, electronics and furniture business. We look forward to a very long relationship with Mark and the Melling Racing team.” Melling has also come to terms with veteran NASCAR driver, Robert Pressley, to drive the #92 BrandSource Dodge, with engine support coming from Ernie Elliott Engines, Inc. Associate sponsors Cabela’s outfitters, Craftsman tools, Dodge, Duck Head Footwear, Freightliner trucks, Wix filters, and Worldcom telecommunications will be part of the Melling team in 2002 as well.(Melling Racing PR)(1-16-2002)
  • Mayfield fastest Wed: #19-Jeremy Mayfield was the fastest in Wednesday’s test session with a lap of 183.221mph. Rounding out the top-five fastest drivers were #15-Michael Waltrip at 183.102, #7-Casey Atwood at 183.091, #33-Mike Wallace at 182.678 and #29-Kevin Harvick with a speed of 182.338. See my 2002 Daytona 500 Testing Session 2 page for speeds(1-16-2002)
  • New #77 Assoc Sponsor: Liberty Life Insurance, based in Greenville, SC, will serve as an associate sponsor for the Mooresville, N.C.-based #77 Jasper Motorsports Ford team of Winston Cup driver Dave Blaney this season. Jasper Engines is the team’s major sponsor. Liberty Life is supporting the team’s racing program through its RBC term insurance. Company vice president Nancy Olson said the program is designed to introduce the term life program to new customers. “The racing enthusiasts are a very loyal customer base,” Olson said. “It’s very much the same target market that is attracted to our product.” The company also will be the title sponsor of the Feb. 23 BGN race at North Carolina Speedway. The race has been named the 1-866RBCTerm.com 200.(Greenville News)(1-16-2002)
  • Andretti wins charity race: John Andretti won a 15-lap race for charity at New Smyrna Speedway that featured fellow Winston Cup drivers Kyle Petty, Hut Stricklin and Casey Atwood. The “Race For Kids Sake” was ran to help support Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Volusia County. Atwood won last year’s event.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-16-2002)
  • Women in Racing: Seven-time Indianapolis 500 starter Lyn St. James hosted a panel discussion on Diversity in Motorsports. Also taking part in the discussion were: Kimberly Miller, Media Relations Coordinator for the Indy Racing League; Lowe’s Motor Speedway President and General Manager H.A. “Humpy” Wheeler; Dr. Jaques Dallaire of Human Performance International; and Indy Racing League and Championship Auto Racing Teams team owner Derrick Walker, who fields IRL cars for Sarah Fisher. The topic was creating opportunities for female drivers.(LMS Site)(1-16-2002)
  • Safety Meeting #2: NASCAR held a safety update meeting with Winston Cup competitors Tuesday morning before the start of test runs. Dr. John Melvin, a leading bio-medical engineer, gave drivers and crew chiefs updates in various areas of safety.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-16-2002)
  • Marlin and Martin at the track: Sterling Marlin and Mark Martin, who tested here last week, were seen patrolling the garage area Tuesday. Marlin, who drives for Ganassi Racing, is shooting a television commercial at the track. Martin came over to say hi to Roush Racing teammates Matt Kenseth and Jeff Burton.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-16-2002)

    (1-15-2002)

  • Daytona to name ‘something’ for Earnhardt UPDATE: Daytona International Speedway is going name something after Dale [Earnhardt] — they just aren’t saying what it will be. It’s already been decided and it has the blessings of the Earnhardt family, as well. “After considerable input from fans and competitors, and with the support of the Earnhardt family, we have chosen a special way to celebrate the life and legend of Dale Earnhardt. It is our intention to make the announcement regarding our tribute during Speedweeks 2002.” David Talley, Director Corporate Communications, ISC(NASCAR.com)(12-16-2001)
    UPDATE: Rumor has it Daytona International Speedway may be planning to remember the late Dale Earnhardt with some type of permanent memorial — perhaps a statue — before this year’s Daytona 500. The permanent display was said to be, according to a source, “something all fans would have access to.” The official word is expected sometime next week with the ceremony possibly taking place the week leading up to the Feb. 17 race. Earnhardt is the winningest driver at Daytona, with more than 30 trips to Victory Lane when you add up wins in Winston Cup, Busch, Shootout and IROC events.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(1-15-2002)
  • Blast from the past: hearing the old #47 Billy Standridge/Jayski/Competitive Motorsports Tbird (from 1997-1998) is going to make several appearances, starting with the Winston Preview this Saturday at the Competitive Motorsports booth [NASCAR Calanders] and they plan to take the car to Daytona for two weeks to display with their NASCAR calendars on for sale. Billy left the sport a few years ago after running his independent team(1-15-2002)
  • Kerry to test at Daytona UPDATE 4 and run some Cup races: Kerry Earnhardt will test the Dale Earnhardt Inc. No. 8 Chevy during next week’s Winston Cup session.(Daytona Beach News Journal)
    UPDATE: actually being told the car will be #81 and is just a test, not to be run in the Daytona 500 – that is all I know or have heard(1-10-2002)
    UPDATE 2: The car will be #81 and be used as a baseline — or something off which one can bounce ideas, in this case, Michael Waltrip — when DEI comes back here for tests next week. #8-Earnhardt Jr’s team was able to work with #1-K. Wallace’s team earlier this week, but Waltrip would not have had available help. It’ll help Michael, Little E and Kenny. Also hearing other two-car teams are also bringing back baseline cars that were in the first test using different numbers(1-12-2002)
    UPDATE 3: CNN/SI’s NASCAR Plus show reported that Kerry Earnhardt will run 4-5 Winston Cup races early in the season. Running the #81 DEI Chevy (no sponsor mentioned). When Steve Park is ready to return (between Texas and Daytona in July) to the #1 Pennzoil Chevy, Kenny Wallace will drive the #81 which will have gained owners points in case provisionals are needed.(CNN/SI’s NASCAR Plus)(1-14-2002)
    UPDATE 4: Kerry Earnhardt, oldest son of the late Dale Earnhardt, is testing the #81 Chevy for Dale Earnhardt Inc. this week at Daytona in hopes of running a few Winston Cup races this season in addition to his BGN schedule. Earnhardt is using a speedway car from the Steve Park team to test this week. “We’re just down here trying to get some seat time for me and help my guys learn a little bit in aero stuff,” he said. “If I’m ready, if I’m comfortable (I’ll so do some Cup races). There’re no plans, but if things go smoothly, we have the potential to do that.”(That’s Racin’)(1-15-2002)
  • TRAC News and drivers wanted: Leading Designer of Sports Specific Marks and Logos to Work With TRAC As New League Sets Its Eyes on Attracting Broader Fan Base. Also with the season set to begin in a little over a year, TRAC has begun the search for qualified drivers to compete in the new motorsports league’s inaugural year. TRAC has been researching drivers from other series, and has compiled an extensive list, however TRAC is interested in all potential candidates, and invites any potential drivers to contact us. For more info see their site www.traczone.com. All applications must be received by April 1, 2002 in order to be considered eligible.(1-15-2002)
  • Rudd will NOT test at Daytona UPDATE 3: PRN’s Garage Pass radio show reports that Ricky Rudd will not test the #28 Havoline Ford next week at Daytona. Andy Hillenburg will test the car for Robert Yates Racing(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE: Ricky Rudd, who had a back operation several weeks ago, may miss next week’s Winston Cup test session. Rudd is supposed to meet with his doctor later this week. If his doctor clears him to drive, he will participate. If not, Andy Hillenburg will sub for Rudd during the test session.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-9-2002)
    UPDATE 2: Robert Yates, owner of Ricky Rudd’s #28 Fords, said Wednesday that Rudd will not participate in next week’s preseason test at Daytona. Driver Andy Hillenburg will work with Rudd’s team instead. Rudd had back surgery in the off-season and is still recovering. Yates said Rudd’s team may test at another track this month, but Rudd will not participate in any testing prior to arriving in Daytona next month for Speedweeks.(That’s Racin’)(1-9-2002)
    UPDATE 3: Ricky Rudd arrived for the start of Monday’s testing [at Daytona], but he’s here to observe and not drive. Because Rudd is still healing from a recent back surgery, Andy Hillenburg is driving the #28 Yates Racing Ford. Rudd will take the wheel when Speed Weeks starts next month.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-15-2002)
  • Hutchens promoted: Richard Childress has reorganized his three-team Winston Cup operation for this season, and Bobby Hutchens, the company’s chief engineer and general manager [and of the Hutchens device], has taken on another role, as team manager for all three Cup teams(Winston Salem Journal)(1-15-2002)
  • 24 Hours – Been asked…here ya go: SpeedChannel, formerly SpeedVision, will air the Rolex 24-Hours of Daytona live starting February 2 and at various times that weekend.(RacingOne)(1-15-2002)
  • Aero Changes before the 500? Only half of Winston Cup teams have tested under the new rules at Daytona, but there is already talk that those rules will change before Speedweeks next month. “You couldn’t bump draft, you couldn’t get to people,” Kenny Wallace said Monday. “They will change the rules again, I’m pretty positive. But what they will do is up to them.” NASCAR officials decided after the EA Sports 500 at Talladega in October to do away with a set of aerodynamic rules that increased the effects of the draft, keeping cars tightly bunched during racing conditions there and at Daytona. Tghose are the two tracks where carburetor restrictor plates are used. Teams testing at Daytona last week used plates with seven-eighths of an inch openings, which kept top speeds in the draft under 185 mph – significantly slower than what was seen under last year’s rules. “All of us drivers are unsure about what everybody wants,” Wallace said. “Everybody wanted exciting racing, so we gave them three- and four-wide racing with photo finishes. That was too competitive and we were wrecking too much. Now we’re back to the rules that people complained were too boring. I know what everybody wants to accomplish,” he said. “Everybody wants perfect racing. I don’t think you can do it.”(That’s Racin’)(1-15-2002)

    (1-14-2002)

  • Park to test at Charlotte: CNN/SI’s NASCAR Plus show reported on Monday’s show that Steve Park, injured in a BGN accident at Darlington, will test a roadster at Lowes Motor Speedway to see how his progess is going. Park’s return could return anywhere between Texas and Daytona in July(1-14-2002)
  • TV Guide Special NASCAR Issue: After NASCAR’s spectacular ascension into the forefront of mainstream sports and television in 2001, TV Guide is celebrating the upcoming season with its first-ever, sports-oriented, stand-alone publication, TV Guide NASCAR 2002. Hitting newsstands January 21, the full-size publication (as opposed to TV Guide’s customary digest size) is a comprehensive preview of the upcoming 2002 season. Targeted at the millions of NASCAR faithful, it also serves as the perfect primer for the many recent NASCAR converts. TV Guide NASCAR 2002 features four different collectible covers, one each featuring Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon, Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart. Each issue also includes a full-size poster of either Dale Earnhardt or Jeff Gordon. Each of these issues will be evenly distributed throughout the country. The magazine has a newsstand price of $4.95. The 96-page, full-color magazine provides an exciting look at the season to come, with several features contributed by an array of renowned NASCAR journalists, including David Poole, Monte Dutton, Mike Hembree and Jim McLaurin (and even Jayski).
    Among the highlights:
    2002 Viewers Guide: TV Guide predicts the top 25 finishers and provides driver info and stats, schedules as well as lineup and track information – everything needed for NASCAR faithful, or those new to the sport, to enjoy the year.
    The Moment that Changed Everything: A look at how fans, media, drivers and NASCAR itself have reacted in the year since the death of Dale Earnhardt.
    2001 – The Year in Pictures: A look back at the 2001 season with some of the most memorable photos of the year.
    The Top 10 to Watch: TV Guide breaks down the top races of 2002.(TV Guide PR)(1-14-2002)
  • Body Dynamics Paint and Mechandising: Body Dynamics Racing Bodies, Inc. is proud to announce that they have re-signed their product sponsorship with Sherwin-Williams Automotive Paints for the 2002 race season. This season they will be working with Sherwin-Williams to possible conduct how-to-paint seminars and the proper way to apply Sherwin-Williams Automotive painting products at the Body Dynamics location dates and time TBD. AND Body Dynamics Racing Bodies, Inc. announced their association with a new merchandising sponsor, The Disanto Group, which will be handling all the merchandising, marketing and fulfillment of the America’s Most Wanted /Body Dynamics Racing apparel for the 2002-2003-race seasons. The apparel will be made available at the first part of the season and will include everything from high-end leather Jackets to trinkets like key chains and such, which will all carry the AMW’s logos. In addition AMW and BDR is preparing to make an announcement on whose car the AMW/BDR sponsorship program will land for the 2002 season as well. For more information check them out at www.disantogroup.com.(BDRB PR)(1-14-2002)
  • Hermie Sadler to test at Daytona: #13(or is it #02?)-Hermie Sadler will attempt to fulfill another childhood dream as his team embarks upon a three-day test session in Daytona this week. Sadler, who competed in three Winston Cup races in 2001, is looking forward to the Daytona 500 and the 2002 season. Sadler recently named Jeff Buckner as crew chief for his team and has re-uniting with Bobby King, who will serve as the teams car chief. King was Sadler’s crew chief when he entered the Busch Series in 1993. In addition to the hiring of King, Sadler has acquired the services of Steve Crowe. Crowe joined the team last season on a part-time basis and was the understudy to Jim Long. “When Jim Long and Steve came on board last year to help us out, it became apparent to me that Steve Crowe is one of the brightest minds I had ever worked with”, stated Sadler. “It was very important for me to get someone like Steve to join our team. He has a great deal of chassis and aerodynamic knowledge. He was a tremendous help to us last year and he fits in well with the other guys on my team.” Although Sadler has not officially announced his plans for 2002, he plans to run at least ten Winston Cup races and up to five BGN races.. He is finalizing his sponsorship plans and should be ready to announce everything in February. “The Daytona 500 is the biggest race of the year and we feel confident sponsorship opportunities will begin to open up as we have productive test sessions.. We have several programs finalized but we’re still working on sponsorship for the season opener. The test this week will show us where we rank among many of the top teams. Obviously if we have a good test more sponsorship opportunities could come available. To be a part time team, we are very deep and talented. I feel like we’ll surprise some people this year”(Hermie Sadler Enterprises PR)(1-14-2002)
  • McReynolds Workshop: FOX TV Personality and former NASCAR Winston Cup crew chief Larry McReynolds headlines Racer’s Workshop in the West, including Las Vegas January 19 and 20, 2002. McReynolds joins other speakers to give his insights on pre-race racecar set-up, track tuning, team organization, shocks, sponsor-hunting, making more power, spotting during a race, and other topics. As stock-car racing grows in popularity as an all-American sport, McReynolds emphasizes the importance of team structure and management. “Team management is half the battle,” said McReynolds. “Sure, it’s about shocks and set-up, but more importantly, it’s about people. The drivers got a lot of information about how to handle his crew members and be a part of a team,” said Livermore workshop participant and Finishline Racing Equipment owner Chris Carli. “I liked Larry’s comments about communication and being open-minded.” Former NASCAR Winston West driver Larry J. Pryor organized the Racer Workshops last year in response to the need for educational forums for entry-level and serious racers and mechanics. “I had attended and organized many seminars and workshops in the emergency medical services field in which I worked,” said Pryor, a former paramedic and emergency medical services owner. “I felt a need for them in racing as well.”(Racer’s Workshop PR), see info on more Seminars, Racing Schools, Colleges/Training on my Racing Schools/Jobs page(1-14-2002)
  • Jeff Gordon wins award: Jeff Gordon has become only the third driver in history to win the Jerry Titus Memorial Trophy for a third time. He joins Mario Andretti and John Force as the only drivers named three times as the top driver of the year by the American Auto Racing Writers & Broadcasters Association (AARWBA) since the Auto Racing All-America Team was started in 1970. Gordon was presented the Jerry Titus Memorial Trophy at the annual Auto Racing All-America awards banquet Saturday, January 12. The award goes to the driver who polls the highest number of votes on the All-America Team selected by the AARWBA membership. The overall voting was close, with just four votes covering the results for the top three drivers. The voting was not this close since 1976, when the top three were spread by only seven votes. On the heels of his fourth NASCAR Winston Cup championship, Gordon dominated the Stock Car category in the voting and was elected First Team for his eighth time. He also was the Titus winner in 1995 and 1998. Behind him, series runner-up Tony Stewart and Rookie of the Year Kevin Harvick received an identical vote tally to create a 13-driver First Team for only the third time in the 32-year history of the All America Team. Other First Team drivers honored at the banquet were Kenny Bernstein and John Force in Drag Racing; Sam Hornish Jr. and Gil de Ferran in Open Wheel; Paul Gentilozzi and James Weaver in Road Racing; Danny Lasoski and Dave Darland in Short Track; Townsend Bell and Rob MacCachren in At Large. Special awards at the banquet were presented to land speed record-holder Craig Breedlove and auto racing innovator Andy Granatelli, both named to AARWBA’s Legends in Racing Hall of Fame. The late J.C. Agajanian’s family was saluted as “Pioneers” in Racing for their contributions to the sport over many years. Danica Patrick was presented with the Gorsline Award and scholarship for up-and-coming racing drivers. The Jerry Titus Memorial Trophy honors the late motor sports journalist and racing driver, Jerry Titus, who was killed at Road America in 1970. Perhaps the single most unusual trophy in sports, the Titus Trophy consists of the driver’s own helmet and portable typewriter mounted in a huge walnut base. Plaques are added to the award each year to recognize the winners. The final vote for the Titus, the closest vote since 1976, was Gordon 89, Bernstein 87, Force 85.(AARWBA PR)(1-14-2002)
  • Labonte and Cheez-It: #5 Terry Labonte will run a Cheez-It/Kelloggs scheme at Las Vegas and the Coca Cola 600. See the Paint Schemes Gallery for the image(1-14-2002)
  • Steele to skip the Daytona 500: Former ARCA Champion Tim Steele has decided not to try and make the field for the upcoming Daytona 500. Steele, who will attempt to make a few NASCAR Winston Cup and Busch races in addition to 11 ARCA events in 2002, said pulling things together in time for Daytona just couldn’t be done.(RacingOne)(1-14-2002)
  • Texas Tire Testing: hearing the #40 Coors Lite team and driver Sterling Marlin will be doing a Goodyear tire test at Texas Motor Speedway on January 29th and 30th(1-14-2002)
  • Wallace Mechaic to make a Dash: Chuck Gafrarar has made plenty of trips to Daytona International Speedway as a mechanic on the #2 Miller Lite Ford driven by Rusty Wallace in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series. On Saturday during the first day of a two-day NASCAR Goody’s Dash Series test session in preparation for the Feb. 9 Daytona USA 150, Gafrarar wasn’t a crew member anymore. This time, he was driving a Pontiac Sunfire for Randy Humphrey Motorsports. Gafrarar posted the second fastest speed of the day with a lap of 161.293mph. As a fabricator at Penske Racing, the 31-year-old Gafrarar, a native of Lancaster, PA, works on the bodies Wallace’s #2 Ford making them as aerodynamically sound as possible. But during his spare time, he has been pursuing a career as a race car driver. Gafrarar, who doesn’t travel too often with Wallace’s Winston Cup team, will make a run at NASCAR Goody’s Dash Series Rookie of the Year honors this season. During the Feb. 9 DAYTONA USA 150 NASCAR Goody’s Dash Series season opener, Wallace will be on the radio serving as a coach to Gafrarar.(DIS PR)(1-14-2002)
  • Gerhart to run the Daytona 500: ARCA veteran Bobby Gerhart will run the ARCA race, and is planning to enter either the Winston Cup or BGN races at Daytona. And the ARCAfan site is reporting that engine-builder Dan Begle has completed a Winston Cup engine for Bobby Gerhart to run in the Daytona 500(ARCA Fans site)(1-14-2002)
  • TV News: Fox Sports Net and Motor Sports Weekly have reached an agreement to air thirty-five original one-hour episodes in 2002. Motor Sports Weekly will join the lineup of shows on Fox Sports Net in 2002. Along with this move, the show will also expand from its current 30 minutes to a full hour. Beginning on March 6, 2002, Motor Sports Weekly will air nationwide on Wednesday afternoons from 3-4 p.m. local time. (Check local listings). Fox Sports Net is the first truly national, regional and local sports network. Through its network of 21 regional sports channels, FSN reaches more than 78 million U. S. households. Many of Motor Sports Weekly’s popular features, including Behind Pit Wall, Inside Track, and Crashed, Trashed and Smashed will return next season along with several new segments, including a regular weekly feature that turns the spotlight on the growing compact and import racing scene in America.(Motor Sports Weekly PR)(1-14-2002)

 


(1-13-2002)

 

  • Stewart 2nd in Chili Bowl on Friday UPDATE wins on Saturday: Cory Kruseman compared driving a midget at the Chili Bowl to driving a Sprint Car on the tight quarter mile at Ventura, CA. Maybe it was that experience that helped him drive his No. 47 Andy Bondio-owned entry to a victory on Friday night in the final preliminary night of the 16th Annual Chili Bowl Midget Nationals. On the ninth lap of the race, Kruseman, the 1999 Chili Bowl champion, took advantage of Jason Leffler holding up Tony Stewart on the bottom to drive from third to first on the high side of turns one and two and lead the rest of the way in the 25-lap main event at the Tulsa Expo Raceway. After Kruseman passed Stewart he pulled away from the field to take the victory, even though he almost lost the race by hitting the brakes hard in Turn 2 to avoid a lapped car. Stewart finished second, with Leffler third and Dave Darland edging Jerry Coons Jr. at the finish line for fourth.(Chili Bowl Site)(1-12-2002)
    UPDATE: Tony Stewart won a race-long battle with Kevin Doty as the two swapped the lead six times over the Chili Bowl’s final 16 laps with Stewart taking the lead for good on Lap 49. Stewart pocketed more than $22,000 for his efforts, which included the $10,000 winner’s share for the purse, more than $1,000 in lap bonus money and an $11,000 bonus for winning with a Mopar engine. Doty finished second, with Cory Kruseman third, Critter Malone fourth and Dave Darland fifth. Kasey Kahne finished sixth, with Danny Lasoski coming from 16th to seventh, Greg Luecker eighth, Tony Elliott ninth and J.J. Yeley drove from 23rd to 10th. Yeley earned the Rich Vogler hard charger award for his run, while Davey Ray, who finished 11th, was named the Chili Bowl’s Top Rookie. Ray received a $1,000 from Ark Wrecking in Tulsa.(Chili Bowl Site)(1-13-2002)
  • Leno tests at Daytona – pace car: “The Tonight Show” host and automobile enthusiast Jay Leno took a spin around the Daytona International Speedway to get ready for his role in the Daytona 500 as a pace car driver. Leno did some laps around Daytona’s 2.5-mile oval in the 2002 pace car, a horsepower-rich Pontiac Firebird. With the Daytona race, Leno becomes the first driver to pace America’s three biggest racing events. Last year he was the pace car driver for the Indianapolis 500 (news – web sites) and the Brickyard 400, both at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.(Yahoo/AP)(1-13-2002)
  • Schrader to run some ARCA(again): #36 M&M’s Pontiac driver, Ken Schrader, will keep up his hectic schedule, one that will see him racing his NASCAR Winston Cup car for 38 weekends next year, announcing Saturday that he was planning to run a pair of ARCA RE/MAX Series events in 2002. Schrader will race ARCA events at the .400-mile South Boston short track on July 3 and the one-mile dirt oval at the DuQuoin, Illinois State Fairgrounds on September 2. Schrader will be driving his own Pontiac for the two events, with sponsorship from Federated Auto Parts. The 46-year-old Missouri native already owns eight ARCA wins as a driver and 16 as an owner, including a pair at Daytona in 1984 and ’85. (SpeedVision)(1-13-2002)

    (1-11-2002)

  • #90 in the tunnel: The Donlavey Racing team will be taking three 2002 #90 Ford Tauruses to the wind tunnel at Langley Air Force base on Saturday. Donlavey has prepared two Superspeedway cars and one down-force car to test in preparation for the upcoming races at Daytona and Rockingham.(Keystone Marketing)(1-11-2002)
  • A Racing France: During Grand-Am’s test last week, J.C. France, son of International Speedway Corporation president Jim France, got a test drive in a new GT-class Marcos Mantis. France was in the car almost immediately and turned a personal fast lap of 2:07. While not exactly blazing speed, factory works driver Cor Euser, who won championship events with the car in Europe, posted a fast lap of 2:00. The car suffered some cooling problems and did not see much action after the first day. It and a soon-arriving sister car will test at Roebling Road near Savannah in preparation for the Feb. 2-3 Rolex 24 At Daytona.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-11-2002)
  • Wind Tunnel Testing? hearing the #68 TWC Motorsports team and the #21 Wood Brothers team are testing cars in the wind tunnel at N.A.S.A.’s Langley Research Center located in Hampton, VA today(1-11-2002)
  • Hutchens Device: Richard Childress Racing Team Manager Bobby Hutchens says his “Hutchens Device” head and neck restraint was scheduled for testing Thursday at Wayne State University by safety expert Dr. John Melvin. Hutchens has developed an upgraded version of the device and is anxious to see where the numbers fall and hopefully move down the road with a better product. Hutchens is hopeful the numbers show a reduction in neck tension. Hutchens says “there are a lot of things NASCAR and it’s experts are doing that nobody’s seen yet that hopefully in the next couple months will come to be as far as being something permanent in the garage area that I think will help all of us.” Hutchens.has learned a lot about safety and engineering principals.when it comes to.belts and seats and that NASCAR and the teams are “turning over every rock we can turn over to make it better for these guys”. The “HANS” and “Hutchens Device” are the only two head and neck restraints current approved by NASCAR.(PRN’s Garage Pass)(1-11-2002)
  • Childress Trademark News: A U.S. magistrate judge issued a permanent injunction and judgement last month in favor of Richard Childress Racing in its trademark infringement lawsuit against Charlotte, N.C.-based Heavenly Deigns of N.C. Inc. and its owners, Barry and Billi Jo McCall Baker. In an order signed Dec. 10, Judge Russell Eliason awarded RCR approximately $500,000 in damages, costs and legal fees. He also issued a permanent injunction prohibiting Heavenly Designs from “manufacturing, distributing, advertising, offering for sale, or selling goods under any designs or marks comprised of a number 3, with or without angel’s wings and/or halo.” Childress said he was pleased the case was over and the injunction issued.(That’s Racin’)(1-11-2002)
  • Bye-Bye CNN/SI Network UPDATE 2: CNN plans to scrap the struggling CNN-Sports Illustrated and replace it with a new cable network, which will be operated with the NBA. About 200 people work for CNN-SI, but it is not clear how many positions will be eliminated, although it could be the largest number since CNN eliminated the jobs of 400 employees a year ago in a 10 percent across-the-board reduction. Steve Robinson, general manager of CNN-SI, told staff members of the decision Wednesday afternoon. The 5-year-old network has never made a profit. It is available in about 20 million households, half what executives say is needed to be consistently profitable. AOL Time Warner, which owns CNN, has been in negotiations with the National Basketball Association about building on the remains of CNN-SI to create a jointly owned network. The network’s focus would be on sports events rather than sports news. It would air several lives NBA games a week, as well as archived games and other programming.(Charlotte Observer), no idea how this will effect qualifying/Happy Hour practice and it’s TV coverage in the 2nd half of 2002, the new network could coer it or TNT may, no idea…
    UPDATE: hearing that the new network that is replacing CNN/SI is going to air old Cup races, as well as all NASCAR news conferences, live qualifying and happy hour, and other nascar related events.(1-10-2002)
    UPDATE 2: see column at MotorsportsTV – Turner to Close CNN/SI, Start New Network;.How NASCAR Might Be Affected by Mike McCarthy(1-11-2002)


    (1-10-2002)

  • No Wind Tunnel: John Darby, Winston Cup Series director, said Wednesday NASCAR officials plan no wind tunnel tests based on speeds recorded here this week in tests or in the final session which begins Monday. “We have no plans to take the cars to the wind tunnel following tests,” Darby said. “We haven’t inspected the cars, and just walking around, after all the cutting and chopping they’re so different now than when they came off the trucks it wouldn’t serve any purpose.”(Lakeland Ledger)(1-10-2002)
  • #75/Oordt Team to Return? former #75 Galaxy Motorosports Cup team owner Darwin Oordt said there is a chance he could field a new team with former Minnesota Vikings coach Dennis Green as his partner, perhaps as early as this season. ”Dennis and I became friends when I was in Minnesota,” Oordt said. ”He’s very interested in racing, and we’re trying to get things worked out to co-own a team.” Oordt was forced to fold his Winston Cup team last season after a major sponsorship fell through. When he was unable to field a car for the Daytona 500, Oordt was sued by his driver, Wally Dallenbach, for breach of contact. The legal battle remains unsettled. Dallenbach is seeking damages for what he calculates would equal a year’s lost earnings. Neither side will reveal figures in the suit, but it is believed to be in excess of $1 million.(Tennessean)(1-10-2002)
  • Carl Long 2002 Plans UPDATE: Carl Long plans to run for various Winston Cup races with Mansion Motorsports [#85 Dodge] and plans to run additional Cup races with Price Motorsports in 2002. Price Motorsports is owned by Foster Price, who fielded a USAR Hooters Pro Cup car for Carl Long in 2001. The new Winston Cup team will run Dodges with SR Racing Engines and will likely use the #35 in competition. Their first scheduled event with Carl Long will be at Rockingham, the 2nd race of the 2002 season. Mansion Motorsports will still field a car for Carl Long at the Daytona 500. Long and Glenn Racing, owned by Rick Glenn, plan to run the BGN race at Rockingham in Feb and are also exploring options of starting a Winston Cup team which Long would drive Dodges with SR Racing Engines. And SR Racing, owned by Bobby Robinson, who will have Long drive a few local late model truck races in Tennessee and will manage Long’s engine program for 2002, is exploring options to start a Winston Cup team for Long in a Dodge. Long plans to run as many as 25 races in 2002, excluding road course races and west coast races, unless a sponsor is found for one of teams or a team that’s from the west coast could run some races with Long out west. Since Long plans to run more than seven Cup races in 2002, he will run for the Rabestoes Rookie of The Year Award(Carl Long Racing Site)(1-9-2002)
    UPDATE: the crew chief for the #35 team will Mike Chance(Carl Long Racing Site)(1-10-2002)
  • Atlanta Testing UPDATE 4: #99-Jeff Burton will test at Atlanta Motor Speedway for Goodyear on Jan 7-8th and #28-Ricky Rudd will test there on Jan 21-22.(AMS PR)(1-2/7-2002)
    UPDATE: testing was pushed back a day due to poor weather and will now run Tues/Wed instead for Burton and Goodyear(PRN’s Garage Pass radio show)(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE 2: no speeds to report, but hearing Burton has blown two engines during the test and has brought out a 2nd car to test(1-8-2002)
    UPDATE 3: Jeff Burton’s two-day Goodyear Tire test started slowly Tuesday at Atlanta Motor Speedway, as Burton managed to complete just six laps before blowing his second engine of the day. The team pulled out the backup car with a third engine to complete the afternoon.s test session. “We don.t really know what happened,” Burton said. “We would rather spend our time getting back out on track and taking advantage of our time than thinking analytically about how and why the engines blew. We’ll figure that out later. But we really don’t have any idea why both of them blew they’re the same engines we had here in November for the race, just rebuilt.” Mart Keto, Goodyear’s lead engineer for NASCAR, said there will be enough time Wednesday to complete the Goodyear testing. Goodyear is trying to increase wear for the left-side tires before the March 10 Atlanta 500. “We don’t want to change too much with the tires, because we’ve had some really good races here in Atlanta, and we don’t want to screw that up,” Keto said. “We’ll test 5 or 6 different left-side compounds and leave the right side alone.” Burton is the first driver on track in 2002. The next scheduled test is Jan. 23-24 with Ricky Rudd and Robert Yates Racing.(AMS PR)(1-8-2002)
    UPDATE 4: After shaking off all the cobwebs yesterday, #99-Jeff Burton returned to Atlanta Motor Speedway for the second of a two-day Goodyear Tire test Wednesday, turning a top lap of 184.125 mph. Burton lost two motors and turned only about 20 laps Tuesday before pulling out the backup car and third and final engine. They continued the test Wednesday with that package, completing tests for Goodyear designed to help find a left-side tire with better wear before the March 10 Atlanta 500. “I think we found something good,” Burton said. “I feel good about it. We came in looking for better grip and more wear, and that.s what we found.” The next scheduled test at Atlanta Motor Speedway is Jan. 23-24 with Ricky Rudd and Robert Yates Racing.(AMS PR). NOTE: Yates has said Rudd would not test but the team would, so look for another driver to sub for Rudd.(1-10-2002)


    (1-9-2002)

  • Mobil Not Happy? BUT UPDATE 3 IMAGE: hearing Mobil might not be coming back to Penske at all as an associate sponsor as they were not happy with the team going away the way it did and might do just a very small associate sponsorship now if at all and do not have a contract signed(12-11-2001)
    UPDATE: from the Mobil 1 Racing site: ExxonMobil will continue its relationship with Penske Racing as associate sponsor on both the #2 Miller Lite Ford Taurus and the #12 Alltel Ford Taurus. We will also continue as an associate sponsor on Penske’s two open wheel racing entries and look forward to our ongoing association with Penske Racing. We have a long history in motorsports and use these programs as a product development proving ground and as part of our brand communication efforts.(Mobil 1 Racing)(12-14-2001)
    UPDATE 2: hearing that the #12-Ryan Newman Ford, will carry Mobil One colors for up to four races in 2002(12-18-2001)
    UPDATE 3: not sure what races Mobil One will run on the #12, but see an image of the scheme on my Paint Schemes Gallery(1-9-2002)
  • Seats Approved: NASCAR has approved the use of the PPI composite seat. In years past, only seats comprised of aluminum materials have been approved for use.(NASCAR PR)(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE: NASCAR has just given the OK for the new composite driver’s seat that Cal Wells [PPI] and Jeff Burton (actually Burton was not involved in the composite seat but a separate seat project, and aluminum seat) have been working on. Tony Stewart and Bobby Labonte are expected to have the seats in their cars when they test here next week. NASCAR told teams last month they could brings cars here for testing with those seats, but no one here this week has one installed yet. Jeff Gordon, who is looking at a new, safer steering wheel, said that he’ll stick with his standard aluminum seat for the time being(Winston Salem Journal)(1-9-2002)
  • Scott to be honored: The family of the late Wendell Scott, a member of the National Motorsports Press Association’s Stock Car Racing Hall of Fame and the only African American driver to win a race in NASCAR’s top series, will be honored Saturday when the Association for Minorities in Motorsports holds its first awards banquet. The year-old Greensboro, N.C.-based group encourages minority participation in the motorsports industry by collaborating with racing organizations to encourage entrepreneurial, educational and other opportunities for minority communities. The banquet will be held Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Koury Convention Center in Greensboro. Scott and other pioneers in adding to the minority presence in motorsports will be recognized. The Wendell Scott Spirit of the Pioneer Award, to be presented annually by the group, will also be introduced. The event will serve as a fund-raiser for the group’s mobile museum project. For more information about the banquet or the association, call (336) 272-4882. (That’s Racin’)(1-9-2002)
  • Why no Harvick? UPDATE: been asked, why no Kevin Harvick at the Daytona Testing even though the #29 team was 7th in owners points? Haven’t heard, but can only assume that since the BGN Banguet is on the 11th in California, he has commitments there(1-9-2002)
    UPDATE: One of the teams not on hand that was scheduled to be was the #29 Chevrolet of Kevin Harvick. NASCAR will allow Harvick to test next Monday-Wednesday since he has to attend the NASCAR Busch Series banquet in California later this week.(NASCAR.com)(1-9-2002)
  • Park’s Vision still not 100% UPDATE: Paul Andrews, crew chief for the #1 Chevys owned by DEI, said Monday the team’s regular driver, Steve Park, is still experiencing double vision from an accident in September during the BGN race at Darlington, SC. Park has not raced since then and Kenny Wallace has been driving in his place. Wallace reported to Daytona Beach this week for the three-day preseason test. Park remained in Charlotte and has another doctor visit planned. “His vision is the biggest holdup and it’s just not 100 percent yet,” Andrews said. “If he wasn’t going to the doctor, he would probably be here at the test with us. It’s been good progress, just a little slow.”(That’s Racin’)(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE: “My vision is about 95 percent healed,” Steve Park said. “The last five percent is coming back to me stronger each day. Heck, doing those eye exercises every day for an hour or so is finally paying off. The double vision is gone and the only part that still bothers me is when I look from the horizon down. That still gets a little blurry sometimes, but it’s a lot better than it was a few weeks ago.” Park is planning to attend the second Winston Cup test session at Daytona next week. Park has driven his personal vehicle for two months — his reaction and coordination tests have all come back with no indications of lingering effects.(NASCAR.com)(1-9-2002)
  • Rudd will NOT test at Daytona UPDATE 2: PRN’s Garage Pass radio show reports that Ricky Rudd will not test the #28 Havoline Ford next week at Daytona. Andy Hillenburg will test the car for Robert Yates Racing(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE: Ricky Rudd, who had a back operation several weeks ago, may miss next week’s Winston Cup test session. Rudd is supposed to meet with his doctor later this week. If his doctor clears him to drive, he will participate. If not, Andy Hillenburg will sub for Rudd during the test session.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-9-2002)
    UPDATE 2: Robert Yates, owner of Ricky Rudd’s #28 Fords, said Wednesday that Rudd will not participate in next week’s preseason test at Daytona. Driver Andy Hillenburg will work with Rudd’s team instead. Rudd had back surgery in the off-season and is still recovering. Yates said Rudd’s team may test at another track this month, but Rudd will not participate in any testing prior to arriving in Daytona next month for Speedweeks.(That’s Racin’)(1-9-2002)
  • IROC Field Set: The 2002 True Value International Race of Champions [IROC] officials confirmed the entire 2002 lineup which will consist of five NASCAR Winston Cup drivers, five from the Indy Racing League, one from the Pennzoil World of Outlaws and one from the NASCAR Craftsman Truck series.
    From Cup: Bobby Labonte, Dale Jarrett, Sterling Marlin, Tony Stewart and Kevin Harvick.
    From the IRL: Sam Hornish Jr., Buddy Lazier, Scott Sharp, Helio Castroneves and Al Unser Jr
    From the CTS: Jack Sprague(now in the BGN) and World of Outlaws champion Danny Lasoski will round out the field, making his first appearance and the first for an Outlaws driver since Steve Kinser ran in the 1996 series.(SpeedVision)(1-9-2002)
  • Video Taping Restrictions: One of the nearly overlooked additions to the 2002 Winston Cup rulebook is a section devoted to the use of pit cameras and other recording devices by teams to tape their pit stops. In an attempt to prevent teams or individuals from selling the footage, NASCAR now allows the taping of pit stops for internal competition-related uses only. NASCAR spokesman Jim Hunter said the move was made to prevent any unauthorized distribution of race footage.(That’s Racin’)(1-9-2002)
  • Safety Meeting: Winston Cup Series director John Darby said NASCAR held a safety update meeting Tuesday morning at Daytona International Speedway with most of the drivers participating in the test session. Dr. John Melvin, who consults NASCAR on safety issues, conducted the meeting. A similar safety update will be held with the Winston Cup drivers at the Jan. 14-16 test here. Darby said the NASCAR medical director and crash investigator positions, newly created this season, have not been filled.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-9-2002)

    (1-8-2002)

  • Stewart and the Indy 500 UPDATE: [Chip] Ganassi said Sunday that he is close to firming up a deal with NASCAR star Tony Stewart for the Indy 500. They teamed up to finish sixth this year.(Indianapolis Star)(11-5-2001)
    UPDATE: hearing that Stewart may run for Penske in the Indy 500 with Home Depot as the sponsor(1-3-2002)
    UPDATE 2: Winston Cup and Championship Auto Racing Teams series owner Chip Ganassi said Tuesday that he and Winston Cup star Tony Stewart are “talking about” putting together a deal for Stewart to run in the 2002 Indianapolis 500 with a Ganassi-owned car. “You know Tony, he’s like trying to nail jelly to a post sometimes,” Ganassi said. “So, we’ll see. You can play telephone tag with him for three weeks before you reach him. It’s moving along, and I would say on schedule.” Stewart ran both the Indianapolis 500 and Coca-Cola 600 in Charlotte the same day last season – his second time competing in both races. He finished sixth at Indy in a Ganassi-owned car and third at Charlotte with his Joe Gibbs-owned team.(That’s Racin’)(1-8-2002)
  • Not really racing – but sad news: Wendy’s founder Dave Thomas died at his home in Florida, the company said Tuesday. Thomas was 69. Thomas died around midnight at his Fort Lauderdale, Fla., home, the nation’s No. 3 fast-food hamburger chain said, but gave no word on the cause of death. Thomas had done a series of Wendy’s commercials with a stock car theme and with retired Cup great Darrell Waltrip the past few seasons(in part from CNN/Money)(1-8-2002)
  • No Engine Rule at Daytona: NASCAR has decided to allow teams to change engines following qualifying Feb. 9 for the Daytona 500. Beginning this season, teams are required to use the same engine for qualifying and the race. The move for Daytona was made because of the 125-mile qualifying races held prior to the race.(That’s Racin’)(1-8-2002)
  • MRN in NYC: WSNR-AM, 620 in New York City has joined the Motor Racing Network (MRN) family of affiliates for 2002. It is the first NYC-based station to become an affiliate since MRN, America’s largest independent sports radio network, went on the air in 1970. The sports-talk station, which serves the New York City metro, Long Island, and portions of New Jersey, will broadcast the 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup Series beginning with the Feb. 10 Budweiser Shootout live from historic Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. In addition to live race coverage, WSNR will provide its race fans with MRN’s “Monday Morning Race Refresher,” a recap of each weekend’s NASCAR results and “NASCAR TODAY,” a daily three-minute newscast featuring event information, driver interviews and late breaking news stories from the NASCAR circuit. WSNR is owned by “Sporting News Radio,” located in Chicago.. MRN Radio is also on sister station WWZN-AM, 1510, in Boston.(MRN PR)(1-8-2002)
  • Lasoski invited to IROC: World of Outlaws champion(sprint-car), Danny Lasoski has accepted an offer to drive in this year’s International Race of Champions(IROC). Other drivers selected are Sam Hornish, Helio Castroneves, Kevin Harvick, Buddy Lazier, Scott Sharp, Jack(not Ed as the story has) Sprague and the story says Robby Gordon and Tony Stewart have been invited. Jeff Gordon was scheduled to compete but had to back out citing sponsorship commitments and time commitments resulting from becoming a team owner this year. The complete field is scheduled to be unveiled next week.(Kansas City Star)(1-8-2002)
  • TV Stuff UPDATE NO TAPE DELAY: Due to the opening weekend of the Olympics being on NBC, the Budweiser Shootout will air on TNT at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, February 10. The “We Got Drama” network will also show the Gatorade Twin 125s live at 1:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 14. AND Echostar’s (Dish Network) contract with ESPN Classic expired December 31, the company decided to drop ESPN Classic, so NASCAR fans with Dish Network can’t watch the old NASCAR races on ESPN Classic.(MotorsportsTV)
    AND Suite 101 NASCAR site is reporting that “It has become apparent that NBC is still unhappy with their NASCAR obligations. There is a rumor going around that NBC is considering a tape delayed TV broadcast of the Daytona 500 because of the races interference with proposed Winter Olympics coverage. At this time, there is no concrete evidence that there is any truth to this rumor, other than some rumblings about it on the ESPN RPM 2Night TV show.” I didn’t see the show or the comments, but I cannot see NBC tape delaying the Daytona 500(send questions/comments to Suite 101)(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE: NASCAR fans can relax. NBC will air the Daytona 500 live. There is absolutely no chance the Olympics will cause a tape-delayed broadcast. This has been verified first-hand with the with people that make these decisions. But if you absolutely insist on watching it tape-delayed, you can watch it on TNT from 12noon to 4:00pm/et on Monday, February 18th(MotorsportsTV)(1-8-2002)
  • Yates to the BGN? UPDATE 2 with Channellock? Word is that Robert Yates Racing will have a Busch Series team in 2002. Rumor has it that it will be a Ford, just like the team’s two cars in Winston Cup. Word is that Ford will have a major role in the development of the team. As far as a driver goes, talk has USAC driver Kasey Kahne behind the wheel. Kahne was supposed to go IRL racing, but will instead concentrate his efforts in NASCAR.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(1-2-2002)
    UPDATE: hearing RYR is going to field a BGN team with Channellock as the primary sponsor for a limited schedule of 20 BGN races in 2002 with an announcement within the next week or so(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE 2: hearing former Roush crew chief, Tommy Morgan will crew chief the team(1-8-2002)


    (1-7-2002)

  • Brack in NASCAR? UPDATE 4 will be #42: Kenny Brack, of CART, in the field at Indy for IROC’s season finale, has been mentioned for a Winston Cup ride, possibly with A. J. Foyt. With the CART series in the middle of a sharp decline, the 1999 Indy 500 winner and 1998 Indy Racing League champ, at 35, is looking at his options. “Sure, I’m interested in NASCAR in the future, but right now I’m focused on the CART championship,” Brack said. That tour’s points leader won at Chicago Sunday, so he’s clearly on top of his game. “Through the IROC series, I’ve made several friends in the NASCAR circuit, and if there would be an opportunity for me to go NASCAR, I would look very seriously at it. NASCAR in the future, yes, but not next year.” NASCAR intrigues Brack: “I am very humble for the fact that it is a different series with different cars and everything, and there are a lot of good drivers in NASCAR,” he said. “So if I would go to NASCAR, I know it wouldn’t be easy. I never underestimated any series I’ve gone into. Yes, if you practice enough you can get good, but there will be 50 drivers there and they’re all good. So you’re not going to come in and do anything unless you’ve done your homework. And even then it’s difficult(in part from a column in the Winston Salem Journal). NOTE: Robin Miller also metioned Brack to Foyt’s #14 Conseco car in the future a few nights ago on ESPN2’s RPM 2Night(8-4-2001)
    UPDATE: on Monday’s RPM 2 Night show (ESPN2 at 7:00pm), Dr Jerry Punch said not to be surprised to see Brack run at the 2002 Daytona 500(8-7-2001)
    UPDATE 2: ESPN.com has learned that CART driver, Kenny Brack has already signed with Chip Ganassi for the 2002 CART season and Indianapolis 500. Meanwhile, neither Brack nor Ganassi would confirm or deny a deal on Monday. Besides the money and Indy, another enticement for Brack to go to Ganassi could be NASCAR. Chip fields a two-car Winston Cup team and Kenny has declared he definitely wants to try stock cars in a couple years.(ESPN)(8-14-2001)
    UPDATE 3: Kenny Brack is going to get a full-blown look at life in NASCAR in two weeks when he tests Target/Chip Ganassi Racing’s Dodge Intrepid at the NASCAR Open Test session at Daytona International Raceway January 14-16. “We’re trying to find the money to do Daytona with Brack,” Ganassi told Autosport magazine. “He’ll do the test just to be ready. It’s also possible he’ll run later in the year.”(SpeedVision)(1-3-2002)
    UPDATE 4: Kenny Brack will test a NASCAR Winston Cup car for the first time next week at Daytona, but Chip Ganassi Racing’s CART Indy car driver will not make his first Cup start unless sponsorship is secured. Ganassi has said he would like to run Brack in additional stock car races this season, pending sponsorship. Brack will test a #42 Dodge that has been built independent of the fleet prepared for regular Ganassi stock car drivers #40-Sterling Marlin and #41-Jimmy Spencer. Matt Chambers, Jason Leffler’s crew chief in 2001 that heads Ganassi’s test program, will be the crew chief for Brack’s effort.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(1-7-2002)
  • #7 Sponsor Announcement in Vegas? UPDATE 3 and an IMAGE: hearing that the #7 Ultra / Evernham Motorsports team will announce their 2002 sposnor in Las Vegas on Monday, January 7th. Casey Atwood will drive the car in 2002(1-5-2002)
    UPDATE: Casey Atwood can breathe a whole lot easier this morning. His #7 Dodge will have a sponsor for the upcoming Winston Cup season. The official announcement will be made at a news conference in Las Vegas today, the same day teams head to Daytona International Speedway to begin testing for the Feb. 17 Daytona 500.(Tennessean), Atwood is scheduled to test at Daytona in next weeks session. Also, starting today in Las Vegas is the International Consumer Electronics Show, and today is CES Press day with approx 18 companies having some sort of Press Conferenence today including Zenith, Sirius Satellite Radio, Panasonic, Pioneer, XM Satellite Radio and Microsoft’s Bill Gates is a keynote speaker there tonight(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE 2: Ultra Motorsports and Evernham Motorsports Will Announce the New Sponsor of the #7 Dodge and Casey Atwood at the Consumer Electronic Show in Las Vegas on Monday, January 7, 2002(Golin/Harris PR)(1-7-2002)
    UPDATE: Sirius Satellite Radio, the satellite radio broadcaster, today announced it is joining the Evernham Motorsports/Ultra Motorsports Dodge racing team, part of the NASCAR Winston Cup Series. Sirius will be the primary sponsor of the #7 Sirius Satellite Radio Dodge, driven by Casey Atwood. The car will compete in the 2002 and 2003 NASCAR Winston Cup Series, the premier circuit in stock car racing, making its debut at the Daytona 500 on February 17 at the famed Daytona International Speedway. As part of the relationship, Evernham and Atwood will be featured on Sirius’ music and talk channels. Evernham, Atwood and Jim Smith, the owner of Ultra Motorsports, unveiled the #7 Sirius Dodge at the International Consumer Electronics Show held in Las Vegas. The car will be on display at Sirius’ CES booth during the week. In addition, Atwood will make special appearances at Sirius events throughout the year and the race car will travel as part of Sirius’ “Rhythm of the Road Tour,” a one-of-a-kind consumer listening experience that will debut at retail outlets, sporting events and other locations.(Golin/Harris), see my Paint Schemes Gallery for an image of the car(1-7-2002)
  • Testing at Las Vegas: 49 drivers are scheduled to attend Las Vegas Motor Speedway’s annual “Test in the West” Jan. 28-31. Cup champ #24-Jeff Gordon will be among 32 Cup drivers and 17 BGN drivers slated to test over the four-day period in preparation for the March 3 UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 and the March 2 Sam’s Town 300. Each team is allowed to test on two of those days. The testing will run daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is open to the public free of charge. All five of this year.s No Bull 5 competitors, #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #20-Tony Stewart, #99-Jeff Burton, #17-Matt Kenseth and #55-Bobby Hamilton, will take part in the test.
    Following is a list of drivers and the days they are scheduled to test:
    Jan. 28: Winston Cup: #21-Elliott Sadler, #24-Jeff Gordon, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #57-Derrike Cope, #88-Dale Jarrett, #55-Bobby Hamilton, #19-Jeremy Mayfield, #11-Brett Bodine, #6-Mark Martin, #17-Matt Kenseth, #99-Jeff Burton, #97-Kurt Busch. BGN:: #33-Tony Raines, #74-Chad Little.
    Jan. 29: Winston Cup: #21-Sadler, #77-Dave Blaney, #12-Ryan Newman, #24-Gordon, #48-Johnson, #36-Ken Schrader, #57-Cope, #88-Jarrett, #26-Joe Nemechek, #66-Todd Bodine, #55-Hamilton, #19-Mayfield, #11-B. Bodine, #20-Tony Stewart, #18-Bobby Labonte, #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #29-Kevin Harvick, #4-Mike Skinner, #6-Martin, #17-Kenseth, #99-Burton, #97-Busch, #23-Hut Stricklin, #45-Kyle Petty, #44-Buckshot Jones, #15-Michael Waltrip, #31-Robby Gordon. BGN: #37-Jeff Purvis, #33-Raines, #18-Mike McLaughlin, #1-Jimmy Spencer, #2-Johnny Sauter, #21-Jeff Green, #74-Little, #12-Kerry Earnhardt.
    Jan. 30: Winston Cup: #41-Spencer, #77-Blaney, #12-Newman, #36-Schrader, #10-Johnny Benson, #25-Jerry Nadeau, #5-Terry Labonte, #26-Nemechek, #66-T. Bodine, #20-Stewart, #18-B. Labonte, #31-R. Gordon, #29-Harvick, #4-Skinner, #23-Stricklin, #45-Petty, #44-Jones, #8-Earnhardt Jr., #15-Waltrip, #62-Brendan Gaughan. BGN: #37-Purvis, #87-Nemechek, #36-Hank Parker Jr., #18-McLaughlin, #1-Spencer, #32-Dan Pardus, #2-Sauter, #21-Green, #60-Greg Biffle, #12-K. Earnhardt, #14-Larry Foyt, #9-J. Burton, #66-Casey Mears, #29-Brian Vickers.
    Jan. 31: Winston Cup: #41-Spencer, #10-Benson, #25-Nadeau, #5-T. Labonte, #62-Gaughan. BGN: #87-Nemechek, #36-Parker Jr., #32-Pardus, #60-Biffle, #14-Foyt, #9-J. Burton, #66-Mears, #29-Vickers.(LVMS PR)(1-7-2002)
  • Smuckers to sponsor Bodine? UPDATE: hearing Smucker’s Jelly will somehow sponsor the #11 Ford of Brett Bodine, not sure if as a primary or associate sponsor. May actually run a Smucker’s scheme at a race or two if it is as an associate sponsor(11-28-2001)
    UPDATE: not Cup but for the BGN – The J.M. Smucker Company is excited to be partnering with #11 Josh Richeson for two BGN races in the Spring of 2002 as part of a promotion to support their Smucker’s Ice Cream Toppings business. The #11 Ford is owned and operated by Brett Bodine Racing and will compete in the May 3, 2002 race at Richmond and the May 25, 2002 race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte. Brett Bodine is the uncle of 20 year-old Josh Richeson and fielded cars for him in six races last year. In his first ARCA race, Josh qualified fifth and finished 12th and followed with an impressive 2nd place finish in the ARCA event at Pocono. Having three ARCA events and three NASCAR Busch Series events under his belt, he feels he can provide Smucker with a positive experience.(Brett Bodine Racing PR)(1-7-2002)
  • Torch News: Indianapolis 500 champions, Indy Racing League champions, and stars from Indy Racing and the Brickyard 400 will participate in the Olympic Torch relay as it makes its way through Indianapolis on Jan. 7-8. Indy Racing drivers Davey Hamilton and Sarah Fisher are scheduled to carry the torch the evening of Jan. 7 as it arrives in downtown Indianapolis. Eddie Cheever Jr. and Helio Castroneves, the 1998 and 2001 Indianapolis 500 champions, respectively, will join Sam Hornish Jr., the 2001 Indy Racing League champion, in carrying the torch around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval starting a few minutes after 7:00am Jan. 8. Tony Stewart, the 1996-97 Indy Racing League champion and current NASCAR star, will join fellow NASCAR standout and Indianapolis 500 veteran John Andretti, in carrying the torch after it exits the Speedway. Stewart is a native of Columbus, Ind., and Andretti hails from Indianapolis. The event marks the first time the Olympic Torch – which is en route to Salt Lake City for the XIX Winter Olympic Games – will take a lap around the historic 2.5-mile oval. The torch for the 1996 Summer Olympics was brought to the track but did not tour the facility.(IMS PR)(1-7-2002)
  • Decals and Body’s: The Decal Source has been named the exclusive decal provider for Body Dynamics Racing Bodies, Inc.. The two companies had worked together over last season on projects such as missing intern Chandra Levy with BDR/AMW and Melling Racing, Missing sisters Diamond and Tionda from Chicago as well as other missing children/person cases that Body Dynamics/America’s Most Wanted Racing program featured last year. TDS clients consist of Joe Gibbs Racing Interstate Batteries and ppc Nesquick(PR)(1-7-2002)
  • Harvick and Hershey: Hershey recruits Nascar’s Winston Cup circuit Rookie of the Year Kevin Harvick for a $28 million TV, radio, print and Web campaign positioning its new Reese’s FastBreak candy bar as the meal on the run. The quick-meal message is punctuated by a 15-second spot, via DDB, New York, breaking this week that shows Harvick pulling his #29 GM Goodwrench Car into the pit, chomping on a FastBreak and quickly being sent back on the track by his fuel man. Voiceover asks, “Need to refuel?” and touts the milk chocolate, soft nougat and Reese’s peanut butter ingredients. The tagline: “Refuel and go.” Radio ads place Harvick at a press conference where reporters suggest that Reese’s FastBreak should be rookie of the year because the driver performed great in races where he ate one. In another, Harvick thanks his pit crew for always being there with the candy bar even though they occasionally forgot to give him gas and sent him on the track with three tires.(Brandweek), NOTE: harvick ran a Reese’s FastBreak candy bar schemes last Nov at NHIS, see my 2001 Cup Paint Scheme page for the image(1-7-2002)
  • Todd Bodine in the 24 hours? UPDATE: hearing Todd Bodine [driver of the #66 Kmart Ford] will test a car to drive the 24 hours of Daytona and decide after the test if he will run the race. No word on what team or type of car he will test(12-26-2001)
    UPDATE: Todd Bodine has been having some back trouble so he opted out of the 24 hour race. Bodine still plans to test his Cup car on Jan 7-8th.(Todd Bodine Dicussion Board)(1-7-2002)

 


(1-6-2002)

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(1-5-2002)

 

  • New Valvoline Prez: Ashland names new Valvoline President. Samuel Mitchell Jr., 40, joined Valvoline in 1997 as its director of brand marketing. He was named vice president of marketing in 1999, and, since 2000, he has served as the vice president and general manager of retail business. Prior to joining Ashland, Mitchell worked for The Clorox Co. in various positions in brand and category management over an eight-year period. He is currently serving as the co-chair for the category management committee at AAIA. Valvoline owns half of Johnny Benson’s #10 Valvoline Pontiac that finished 11th in 2001. MB2 owns the remainder of the Valvoline sponsored car.(PR)(1-5-2002)
  • Sad News: Helen Martin Mast, mother of Winston Cup driver Rick Mast [#90], died December 31, 2001 after a short illness. Funeral services were scheduled for 11:00am Friday, January 4 at Ebeneezer Methodist Church in Rockbridge Baths, Virginia. Mrs. Mast, 74, is survived by her husband, R.K. Mast, two children (daughter Helena Mast Krohn and son Rick) and four grandchildren. Memorials may be made to the Rockbridge Area Free Clinic, 712 North Main Street Lexington, Virginia 24450.(Camp and Assoc PR)(1-5-2002)


    (1-4-2002)

  • Compton or Lepage or Green(s) in the #14? UPDATE 7 Compton is it: hearing rumors that Stacy Compton and Kevin Lepage are the front runners for the #14 Conseco/A.J. Foyt Racing ride in Cup(12-5-2001)
    UPDATE: Stacy Compton has signed to drive the #59 ST Motorsports Chevy in the BGN series next season(Richmond Times DispatchAND ST Motorsports owner Tad Geschickter announced on Wednesday that Stacy Compton will be in the #59 Kingsford/Johnsonville Chevrolet when Busch Series racing resumes at Daytona in February.(ST Motorsports PR)
    BUT Compton is set to sign with ST Motorsports owner Tad Geschickter, and he’s also working on at least three Winston Cup deals that he feels fairly confident about. If things fall into place, Compton says he could run the entire schedule in both divisions. On Dec. 3, Compton said he expected to have his Winston Cup plans for 2002 firmed up “within the next two weeks.”(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(12-6-2001)
    UPDATE 2: A.J. Foyt is expected to name a driver for the #14 Pontiac this week. Foyt, who has two years remaining on his Conseco sponsorship, has narrowed his choices to Kevin Lepage, David Green and Compton. Last week, Compton signed a deal with ST Motorsports to run in the Busch Series in 2002.(Sporting News)(12-10-2001)
    UPDATE 3: A.J. Foyt is expected to announce the driver of the No. 14 Conseco Pontiac early next week(A.J. Foyt Racing Site)(12-13-2001)
    UPDATE 4: also hearing former BGN driver Mark Green (David and Jeff’s bother) is under consideration for the #14 ride. Mark Green served as a consultant to A.J. Foyt Racing in later 2001 with BGN driver Larry Foyt and attempted Atlanta in an 2nd A.J. Foyt Racing Pontiac but failed to make the race(as did then regular driver Ron Hornaday)(12-15-2001)
    UPDATE 5: A.J. Foyt is expected to announce the driver of the #14 Conseco Pontiac in early January [ the 2nd is rumored](A.J. Foyt Racing Site)(12-19-2001)
    UPDATE 6: hearing it was announced at the #14 AJ Foyt Racing shop yesterday that Stacy Compton is the Driver for 2002 the official announcement will supposedly come on Jan 4th(Friday)(1-3-2002)
    UPDATE 7: A.J. Foyt Racing has signed Stacy Compton to take the helm of the #14 Conseco Pontiac for the 2002 season. Compton, 34, who spent the first two years of his Winston Cup career at Melling Racing, comes to Foyt looking to build on the momentum of his 2001 season, where he swept both poles at Talladega, qualified second and third at Daytona, and earned six top-15 starts in his final 11 races. Team owner A.J. Foyt believes that Compton, who parlayed a stellar two-year run in the Craftsman Truck Series into a Winston Cup ride, is the right driver at the right time for a racing team looking for a catalyst to bring it into weekly contention.(AJ Foyt Racing/ignition, inc. PR)(1-4-2002)
  • Interesting UPDATE accepting mail again: saw this in a Sporting News column by Lee Spencer, from the Jeff Gordon site: “For a continued time due to the concerns that our country is facing with Anthrax and mail delivery, I have instructed my employees and the Fan Club not to accept incoming fan mail. I hope you will understand this is for the protection of my employees, and as soon as we have a higher comfort level concerning the threat of terrorist attacks, we will resume mail reception and responses. You can check www.jeffgordon.com for updates on the status of our Fan Mail reception.”(an FYI for readers/fans)(1-4-2002)
    UPDATE: been told by the fanclub that as of Today, they are now accepting mail again(1-4-2002)
  • New #88 Car Chief? hearing Jason Sheets, who worked for RCR in 2001 and formerly with new #88 crew chief, Jimmy Elledge, will be the new car chief for the #88 RYR UPS Ford and driver Dale Jarrett(1-4-2002)
  • Shepherd Trip: Morgan Shepherd did his annual Christmas Trip in December. In the two weeks before the trip he raised enough money thru the race teams and some loyal supporters to put together 600 gift bags and $22,000.00 for the P.A.R.C. Workshop. The Workshop has 32 Handicapped workers who refinish furniture(1-4-2002)


    (1-3-2002)

  • Buddy Parrott leaves Roush? UPDATE retires: hearing rumblings that Roush Performance Development Manager and lengendary crew chief, Buddy Parrott has parted ways with Roush Racing(12-24-2001)
    UPDATE: One of the longtime mainstays in the NASCAR garage has retired. 62-year old Buddy Parrott steps down following.34 years in Winston Cup racing, the last seven with Roush Racing where he had recently served as Performance Development Manager. Parrott.told PRN’s Garagepass that.Ted Musgrave.once said he had been around so long he greased the wheels on Ben Hurr’s chariot! Parrott said his most memorable racing moments he was a part of include Jeff Burton’s first win at Texas, Richard Petty’s 200th victory at Daytona, Derrick Cope’s Daytona 500 triumph in 1990, and helping Rusty Wallace win 19 races in two seasons. He’ll still visit the NASCAR garage now and again, and may serve as an occasional consultant to Roush Racing. Parrott says his health is good so he wants to enjoy life and ride his motorcycle.(PRN’s Garage Pass)(1-3-2002)
  • Benning to attempt the Daytona 500: Norm Benning has announced plans for a Daytona doubleheader next month. Following his fifth place finish in the season point standings for the ARCA RE/MAX series, Benning has been busy preparing his fleet of Chevrolet Monte Carlos for the upcoming year. One car that isn’t requiring much off-season work is his main SoBe Beverages/Tobin’s RV & Boat Cleaner superspeedway car. During its most recent on-track appearance, the car was one of the fastest on the track at Talladega before a problem with the passenger-side window forced Norm to pit. Benning did not take part in a recent ARCA RE/MAX Series test at Daytona, opting to take a break and “relax” at home, where he is busy planning a new race shop behind his residence. This month, Benning and crew chief Linda Nicholas will be heading south for a three-day test with the Winston Cup teams. Benning Motorsports will be entering both the ARCA RE/MAX Series season opener on February 10 and the Winston Cup Series’ Daytona 500, which will take place on February 17. Benning’s plan for 2002 is currently to run the full ARCA RE/MAX schedule, but he continues to explore opportunities in top NASCAR divisions.(Motorsports Fan Report)(1-3-2002)
  • Donlavey Hires Crew Chief: #90 team owner Junie Donlavey has announced the hiring of Craig Huartson as Crew Chief of Rick Mast’s #90 Donlavey Racing Ford. Huartson rejoins Donlavey Racing from Team Rensi, where he served as crew chief on the Truck Series entry driven by Randy Tolsma before serving as Shop Foreman for the Team Rensi Busch series entry. Huartson served as crew chief at Donlavey Racing during the 2000 season. Donlavey also brought Car Chief/Shock Specialist Keith Roberson board to assist Huartson during the 2002 season. Robinson served as shock specialist for the Jasper Engines team during the 2000 season.(Keystone Marketing PR)(1-3-2002)
  • Shawna back in 2002? UPDATE 5 – 24 races in 2002: Shawna Robinson is the verge of putting together a deal to run as many as two dozen Winston Cup races in 2002 [#49 BAM Racing?]. Robinson made her Winston Cup debut in 2001 with Michael Kranefuss, but failed in each subsequent attempt to qualify. Kranefuss’ BGN team, with driver Elton Sawyer, was forced to shut its doors after finishing fifth in the championship due to lack of sponsorship.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(12-6-2001)
    UPDATE: hearing Shawna Robinson is going to be driving a second Flis Corvette in the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona, with Conway and Goad as co-drivers. Supposedly Bam Motorsports is buying the seat time for her.(12-7-2001)
    UPDATE 2: Shawna Robinson will be entering 24 Winston Cup races for BAM Racing [was #49 in 2001], driving a Dodge. The team currently has no sponsor but is financially secure enough to run the allotted number of events. The crew chief is Eddie Sharp and the team will be supplied engines from Ernie Elliott.(NASCAR.com)(12-7-2001)
    UPDATE 3: hearing Shawna Robinson will NOT drive in the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona and that Kevin Harvick could be in the seat now(12-25-2001)(see story below)
    UPDATE 4: Shawna Robinson and car owner BAM Racing will announce later today in Charlotte a 24-race schedule for the 2002 Winston Cup Series. The 37-year-old Robinson will drive a Dodge Intrepid R/T with Ernie Elliott-built engines. Eddie Jones and Eddie Sharp have been tapped for the roles of team manager and crew chief, respectively, and the team has leased shop space and equipment from former Busch Series owner Buz McCall. BAM Racing is owned by Beth Ann Morgenthau of Coral Gables, who in 2000 and 2001 fielded teams in the ARCA and Winston West series. The team joined up with driver Andy Hillenburg for a three-race, mid-summer deal in 2001, but failed to make the field in those events. The team is negotiating with two prospective sponsors for the 2002 season but reportedly nonetheless intends — sponsor or no — to compete in 24 high-profile Cup races and use all of the 12 available test days allowed for rookie contenders.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-3-2002)
    UPDATE 5: BAM Racing announced today that Shawna Robinson would be the driver of the #49 Dodge Intrepid R/T for 24 of 36 sanctioned races in the 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup Series. On June 10, 2001, Robinson became the first female since 1989 to qualify for a Winston Cup event. When she finished the race, she was the first female to do so since Janet Guthrie in 1980. Robinson competed in the Las Vegas, NV Winston West race for the BAM Racing team in October of 2001. BAM Racing and Robinson have just recently reached a multi-year agreement to compete in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series. With this announcement, BAM Racing continues NASCAR¹s growing interest to provide diversity in the sport. Robinson said, “We will run 24 races as well as the Twin 125 at Daytona this season with hopes of signing a major sponsor for 2002 and the complete 2003 NASCAR Winston Cup Series schedule. In addition to the 24 races, Robinson and BAM will test 12 times in 2002, which is the maximum for rookie drivers.(BAM Racing PR)(1-3-2002)
  • Brack in NASCAR? UPDATE 3: Kenny Brack, of CART, in the field at Indy for IROC’s season finale, has been mentioned for a Winston Cup ride, possibly with A. J. Foyt. With the CART series in the middle of a sharp decline, the 1999 Indy 500 winner and 1998 Indy Racing League champ, at 35, is looking at his options. “Sure, I’m interested in NASCAR in the future, but right now I’m focused on the CART championship,” Brack said. That tour’s points leader won at Chicago Sunday, so he’s clearly on top of his game. “Through the IROC series, I’ve made several friends in the NASCAR circuit, and if there would be an opportunity for me to go NASCAR, I would look very seriously at it. NASCAR in the future, yes, but not next year.” NASCAR intrigues Brack: “I am very humble for the fact that it is a different series with different cars and everything, and there are a lot of good drivers in NASCAR,” he said. “So if I would go to NASCAR, I know it wouldn’t be easy. I never underestimated any series I’ve gone into. Yes, if you practice enough you can get good, but there will be 50 drivers there and they’re all good. So you’re not going to come in and do anything unless you’ve done your homework. And even then it’s difficult(in part from a column in the Winston Salem Journal). NOTE: Robin Miller also metioned Brack to Foyt’s #14 Conseco car in the future a few nights ago on ESPN2’s RPM 2Night(8-4-2001)
    UPDATE: on Monday’s RPM 2 Night show (ESPN2 at 7:00pm), Dr Jerry Punch said not to be surprised to see Brack run at the 2002 Daytona 500(8-7-2001)
    UPDATE 2: ESPN.com has learned that CART driver, Kenny Brack has already signed with Chip Ganassi for the 2002 CART season and Indianapolis 500. Meanwhile, neither Brack nor Ganassi would confirm or deny a deal on Monday. Besides the money and Indy, another enticement for Brack to go to Ganassi could be NASCAR. Chip fields a two-car Winston Cup team and Kenny has declared he definitely wants to try stock cars in a couple years.(ESPN)(8-14-2001)
    UPDATE 3: Kenny Brack is going to get a full-blown look at life in NASCAR in two weeks when he tests Target/Chip Ganassi Racing’s Dodge Intrepid at the NASCAR Open Test session at Daytona International Raceway January 14-16. “We’re trying to find the money to do Daytona with Brack,” Ganassi told Autosport magazine. “He’ll do the test just to be ready. It’s also possible he’ll run later in the year.”(SpeedVision)(1-3-2002)
  • Congrats: Wendy Venturini and Chad Norris were wed at on New Year’s Eve at St. James Catholic Church in Concord, NC. Wendy works at NASCAR Images as a Segment Producer for NASCAR This Morning on FOX Sports Net (and is the daughter of two-time ARCA champ Bill Venturini). Chad works at Penske Racing as the Jackman and Shop Foreman for driver Ryan Newman.(1-3-2002)
  • Cup spotter to field race team: NASCAR Spotter, Mike Calinoff, will take on the role of Car Owner this year, as he announces the formation of MJ Motorsports. The team will field Fords out of their new Mooresville, NC shop in the NASCAR-sanctioned Late Model Truck Series at the famed Hickory Motor Speedway for 18-year-old Arthur “Aazie” Zimblemann. Calinoff works for Matt Kenseth in the Winston Cup and Busch Series. Known as the “Wizard of Aaz”, Zimblemann, a standout and fan favorite in Sprints and Modifieds throughout Iowa and the Midwest, moved to Mooresville, NC this past January to pursue a career in NASCAR racing. A recent test session at Hickory Motor Speedway yielded positive results and prompted Calinoff to form the team. “Aazie is really a terrific talent,” said Calinoff, “his focus and vision was very appealing. I have been looking for this type of situation for the past year – an opportunity to cultivate a team in a local setting, with a young driver, and then advance our efforts to the next level.” The 2002 NASCAR Winston Racing Series season at the Hickory Motor Speedway begins on April 6th.(MJ Motorsports PR)(1-3-2002)
  • Craven wins award: Ricky Craven has been named the fourth-quarter winner of the NMPA/Pocono Spirit Award. Craven joins previous quarterly award winners Kevin Harvick, Tony Stewart and Jeff Gordon on the list of nominees for the annual award. The 2001 award will be presented at the NMPA’s annual convention Jan. 20 in Winston-Salem, N.C. The Spirit Award recognizes character and achievement in the face of adversity, sportsmanship and contributions to motorsports.(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(1-3-2002)
  • Richard Petty Driving Experience Raises $23,280: Race fans in Atlanta, Charlotte, Las Vegas and Orlando climbed into the passenger seat of a stock car to help raise money and awareness for families affected by the events of September 11. The fundraiser, which was held on Wednesday, November 28 by Richard Petty Driving Experience (RPDE), raised $23,280 for the Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund. The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund was created to provide educational assistance to financially needy dependents of those who were killed or permanently disabled as a result of the September 11 attack or rescue efforts. Former President Bill Clinton and former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole serve as co-chairs of the campaign fund efforts. More than 200 firefighters, police officers and emergency medical technicians accepted RPDE’s invitation to participate in the event for free. The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund was created by Citizen’s Scholarship Foundation of America (CSFA), the nation’s largest nonprofit administrator of private scholarship programs, located in Minneapolis and St. Peter, MN, and Lumina Foundation for Education, a private foundation dedicated to expanding access to post secondary education in Indianapolis, IN. Specifically, the Fund will benefit dependents of the victims from Tuesday, September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the United States, including airplane crew and passengers, World Trade Center and Pentagon employees and visitors, and relief workers, including firefighters, emergency medical personnel and law enforcement personnel.(Petty Enterprises PR)(1-3-2002)


    (1-2-2002)

  • Pemberton to Petty? UPDATE: rumors have former #2 crew chief, Robin Pemberton going to work for Petty Enterprises in some capcity (team manager, general magaer, consultant – but not as a crew chief) for the 2002 season.(12-7-2001)
    UPDATE: Robin Pemberton has been named Vice President and General Manager for Petty Enterprises. “Bringing Robin to our race teams is another important move in taking Petty Enterprises to where we want it to be,” said CEO Kyle Petty in making the announcement. “One of the winningest crew chiefs in Winston Cup history joining one of the best engine builders with Mike Ege and bringing them together with all three of our race teams under one roof, we think these moves are going to be big for us.” Pemberton, whose career began at Petty Enterprises and has served with some of the top names in motorsports as a crew chief – Kyle Petty, Mark Martin, Bobby Allison, Neil Bonnett and, most recently, Rusty Wallace – has 499 career starts and winnings of nearly $25 million. Both are second in NASCAR’s modern era. Pemberton.s position continues a series of bold moves made by Petty Enterprises over the past seasons. The first organization to join forces with Dodge for NASCAR Winston Cup racing, Petty Enterprises began an engineering agreement with Elan Technologies of Atlanta, Ga., last Spring; moved all three teams under one roof in Level Cross in the past month; added Mike Ege Racing engines as its exclusive supplier at the beginning of this year; and now has one of the sport’s top organizational mechanical minds as Vice President and General Manager.(Williams Company PR)(1-2-2002)
  • Yates to the BGN? Word is that Robert Yates Racing will have a Busch Series team in 2002. Rumor has it that it will be a Ford, just like the team’s two cars in Winston Cup. Word is that Ford will have a major role in the development of the team. As far as a driver goes, talk has USAC driver Kasey Kahne behind the wheel. Kahne was supposed to go IRL racing, but will instead concentrate his efforts in NASCAR.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(1-2-2002)
  • New #20 Assoc Sponsor: Philips Lighting, the leading provider of innovative, high-quality lighting fixtures to worldwide commercial, residential and utility markets, has joined The Home Depot as an associate sponsor on the #20 Joe Gibbs Racing team. “Philips Lighting is a great partner and they’ve been involved with motorsports in the past. We are happy to welcome them back as a part of our team,” said Dick Sullivan, senior vice president of marketing and advertising for The Home Depot. “Having Philips Lighting join The Home Depot as a NASCAR sponsor is an excellent way to strengthen our mutual relationships with customers.”(Edelman PR)(1-2-2002)
  • Home Depot Official: Since 1999, The Home Depot has been known as the Official Home Improvement Warehouse of NASCAR. It is a title that will continue through 2004, as The Home Depot has extended its status as an official NASCAR sponsor for another three years.(Edelman PR)(1-2-2002)
  • Congrats: Speedway Scene writers Lori Vizza and Mike Snow welcomed the New Year.by getting married in Las Vegas, Nevada. The extremely private ceremony, which occurred at 2:20 am local time (5:20 eastern), made “official” the six year relationship and one week engagement the two shared prior to the ringing in of the New Year. The newly married couple were last seen blowing into the Orleans Casino, where the two have.enjoyed most of their.vacation time since the end of the 2001 Winston Cup season.(1-2-2002)


    (1-1-2002)

  • Sad News: Daytona International Speedway closed out its season of competition the same way it started 2001 — with a gut-wrenching racing death. Michael Davis Jr., a 17-year-old from Coventry, Ohio, died Sunday afternoon after his go-kart slammed into the outside wall in the tri-oval area during a World Karting Association race. Davis became the fourth competitor to die at the racetrack during the 2001 season, a grisly streak started by Dale Earnhardt, who was killed instantly when he crashed on the last lap of the Feb. 18 Daytona 500.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-1-2002)
  • Virginia Licence Plates: Delegate Allen W. Dudley (R-Rocky Mount) announced three of the bills that he will be sponsoring during the upcoming 2002 General Assembly session. The third bill would allow Virginians to buy license plates that celebrate Virginia’s rich motorsports tradition. Dudley will again try to get legislation enacted allowing the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to develop and sell motorsports license plates. Under the proposal, DMV could, upon receipt of 350 applications, make and sell license plates commemorating any driver, track or other aspect of motorsports. These plates would cost $35 per year, and all profits would be used to help offset the costs of other DMV operations. DMV is one of the few completely self-supporting state agencies in that it accepts no general fund revenues from the Commonwealth. “From the Commonwealth’s love of its racing champions of yesterday like Curtis Turner, Wendell Scott, Joe Weatherly and Paul Radford and its racing champions of today like Ward and Jeff Burton, Elliott and Hermie Sadler and Ricky Rudd, to its love of other champions such as Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt, Virginia has a rich motorpsorts tradition. I think this is an appropriate means for our citizens to honor this great sport and its contributions to our state. Moreover, the funds earned from these plates will help ensure that DMV can continue to remain self-supporting and not have to rely on money from the general fund,” said Dudley.(Bill Info Release)(1-1-2002), more info on other states NASCAR License plates on my Collectible Links page