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News from July 31, 2015


  • Kyle Busch wins Pocono pole: #18-Kyle Busch won the Coors Light pole for the Windows 10 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway with speed of 178.416mph for his 1st pole of 2015, 2nd at Pocono and 17th of his career. #18-Busch has won 3 times from the pole.
    #4-Harvick is on the outside pole followed by #22-Logano, #3-Dillon, #14-Stewart, #41-Busch, #20-Kenseth, #19-Edwards, #2-Keselowski, #24-Gordon, #11-Hamlin and #48-Johnson.
    Missing the race was: none, only 43 cars entered.
    See the starting Lineup, qualifying results by round, pole progression and more on Jayski.com’s Pocono Qualifying Page.(7-31-2015)
  • Qualifying Fast Facts – Pocono:
    #18-Kyle Busch won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 42nd Annual Windows 10 400 with a lap of 50.444 seconds, 178.416 mph.
    This is his 17th pole in 375 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his first pole and seventh top-10 start in 2015. His last pole came at Charlotte in October of 2014.
    This is his second pole in 22 races at Pocono Raceway. His first Pocono pole came in June of 2010.
    #4-Kevin Harvick (second) posted his 13th top-10 start of 2015 and his ninth in 30 races at Pocono Raceway.
    #22-Joey Logano (third) posted his sixth top-10 start at Pocono Raceway. It is his 15th in 21 races this season.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(7-31-2015)
  • Second Round of Qualifying for the Windows 10 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is over after 10 scheduled minutes.
    #4-Harvick 177.637
    #19-Edwards 177.508
    #22-Logano 177.445
    #41-Busch 177.246
    #11-Hamlin 177.218
    the rest of the top 12: 14 18 24 20 2 48 3;
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to round 3: 78 31 88 5 1 27 15 10 43 47 6 55.
    (7-31-2015)
  • First Round of Qualifying for the Windows 10 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is over, after 20 scheduled minutes.
    #14-Stewart 177.298
    #4-Harvick 176.925
    #3-Dillon 176.838
    #2-Keselowski 176.637
    #41-Busch 176.453
    the rest of the top 24: 24 78 18 11 48 19 55 22 10 27 88 31 1 5 47 15 43 20 6;
    out of the top 24 and not advancing to round 2: 16 13 42 7 40 9 51 34 35 17 23 83 38 26 46 32 98 33 62.
    Drivers who will miss the race: none, only 43 cars entered.
    (7-31-2015)
  • Coverage of Qualifying for the Windows 10 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is scheduled for Friday, July 31, 2015 at 4:45pm/et.
    Television (TV): NBCSN, 4:30pm/et
    Radio: Live online at Motor Racing Network (MRN)
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: Sunday, August 2 at 10:30am/et on NBCSN
  • Qualifying Order for the Windows 10 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is posted. 43 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers scheduled to go out is #6-Bayne.
    The final driver scheduled to go out is #18-Busch.
    Qualifying order is set by a random draw, held about an hour before the first practice.
    The order is the way the cars line up on pit road, not necessarily how the cars will qualify.
    See the full qualifying order on Jayski.com’s Pocono Qualifying Page.(7-31-2015)
  • Friday practice for the Windows 10 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest, notes:
    #2-Keselowski 176.606
    #20-Kenseth 176.339
    #11-Hamlin 176.267
    #3-Dillon 176.170
    #4-Harvick 175.987
    slowest: #62-Hill 164.285 & #33-Kennedy 165.362
    most laps run: #23-Yeley, 21; #34-Moffit, 20
    Notes: #62-Hill is in a Ford (was Chevy) and the #98-Sorenson is in a Chevy (was a Ford, except Sonoma)
    qualifying is scheduled for 4:45pm/et this afternoon, airing on NBCSN.
    See fastest practice speeds, laps run on the Pocono Friday practice page (pdf)(7-31-2015)

  • Clint Bowyer Statement: #15-Clint Bowyer made a statement Friday at Pocono and answered a question about MWR co-owner Rob Kauffman purchasing part of Chip Ganassi Racing:
    Bowyer Statement: “This isn’t what any of you guys want. You need to bear with us. There’s obviously some change on the horizon. I got the same release you guys did. We’ve got a new sponsor on the car this weekend. It’s a big deal for us. We’ve been working on this a long time. Got a lot of momentum going into this – we’re 20 points out of the Chase and we’ve got to finish this year strong. Like I said, there’s a lot of work to be done in the future and we’re all working on it and when I have something to tell you guys you all know me and I’ll tell you.”
    Q) Did you find about the news from a statement?
    Bowyer: “No, I said you read the statement that I did. There’s obviously change on the horizon and we’re going to have to work on the future and see what that looks like, but for right now we’re focused on 2015, getting Maxwell House in victory lane this weekend and getting in this Chase. We’re close and this can happen and these guys got to stay focused, I’ve got to stay focused and if we do our jobs we can get in this Chase and compete for a championship.”(Toyota Racing)(7-31-2015)

  • Statements from MWR, CGR, Toyota, Felix Sabates & Michael Waltrip:
    Statement from Michael Waltrip Racing: “Rob Kauffman, co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, has agreed to buy an interest in Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. The companies will continue to operate separately and compete against each other for the remainder of the 2015 season. They are also currently evaluating ways to field the most competitive race teams possible to provide an excellent platform for their partners and employees for the 2016 season and beyond. More details will follow in due course”.(MWR)
    Statement from Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates “We confirm that Rob Kauffman has agreed to acquire an interest in the team. Further discussions regarding the 2016 season and beyond are underway.”(CGR)
    Felix Sabates Statement to SXM NASCAR “I’m not going anywhere. This is about making our team stronger, a three car team is stronger than a two car. But the rumors that Rob is buying me out are not true, my last race will be five years from September 9th. I will be 75 years old then and will be done.”(SXM NASCAR)
    Statement from Michael Waltrip: “My focus is on 2015 and fulfilling the commitment we have made to our partners and Toyota which is placing our teams in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. There are a lot of details yet to be sorted regarding 2016. I will work closely with Rob Kauffman and our sponsors to formulate the best way forward.”(MWR)(7-30-2015)
    Statement from Toyota on Rob Kauffman Announcement: “We’ve spoken with Rob Kauffman and understand he has agreed to buy an interest in Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. Rob has not disclosed the plans for Michael Waltrip Racing past the 2015 racing season. Toyota and TRD remain focused on winning races and championships with our team partners this year.” ~Ed Laukes, Vice President marketing, performance and guest experience for Toyota Motor Sales (TMS)(7-31-2015)

  • Pocono Raceway Pole Notes & Facts – Friday:
    · 40 drivers have posted Coors Light poles at Pocono, led by Bill Elliott and Ken Schrader with five each; Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin lead all active drivers with three each.
    · Buddy Baker won the inaugural Coors Light pole at Pocono in 1974 with a speed of 144.122 mph.
    · Five drivers have won consecutive Coors Light poles at Pocono. Bill Elliott holds the record for most consecutive poles at Pocono with three; fall 1984 and both races in 1985.
    · Two active drivers have posted consecutive Coors Light poles at Pocono: Denny Hamlin (2006 sweep) and Joey Logano (fall 2011 and spring 2012).
    · Kyle Larson (8/03/2014) and Casey Mears (8/1/2004) posted their first career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light poles at Pocono Raceway.
    · 13 of the 75 (17.3%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from the Coors Light pole; the most recent was Joey Logano (June, 2012).
    · 15 of the 74 (20%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from the first starting position; the most recent was Jimmie Johnson (June, 2013).
    · The first starting position is the most proficient starting position in the field, producing more winners (15) than any other starting position at Pocono Raceway.
    · 24 of the 75 (32%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from the front row: 15 from the first starting position and nine from second-place.
    · 53 of the 75 (70.6%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Pocono have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    · Five of the 75 (6.7%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.
    · The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Pocono is 29th, by Carl Edwards in the spring of 2005.
    · Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Pocono Raceway five times; most recently the spring of 2013.
    (NASCAR)(7-31-2015)

  • Edwards Eyes Third Straight Pole: #19-Carl Edwards followed up his first Coors Light Pole Award since 2013 at New Hampshire with another one at Indianapolis last weekend. He will go for his third straight Coors Light Pole Award this weekend for Sunday’s Windows 10 400 at Pocono Raceway. Edwards was followed in Indianapolis qualifying by Joey Logano and David Ragan. The trio also qualified 1-2-3 at New Hampshire. The occurrence marked the first time the same drivers started 1-2-3 in consecutive weeks since 2009 (Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson at New Hampshire and Daytona). Both starting orders were based off points due to rain, not competitive qualifying. Before then, the last time the same drivers started 1-2-3 in consecutive weeks was 1972 (David Pearson, Bobby Allison and Buddy Baker at Martinsville and Dover).(NASCAR)(7-31-2015)

  • Suave Men featured on the #42: This weekend at Pocono, Larson’s familiar #42 Target Chevy will be getting restyled to feature Unilever brand Suave Men, which is America’s number-one men’s shampoo brand. This will be the third Unilever themed car that Larson has driven in the NSCS. He has previously driven cars featuring AXE Peace and AXE White Label.(CGR), see an image of the car on Jayski.com’s #42 Team Schemes page.(7-31-2015)

  • Roush Performance featured on the #16 at Pocono: Greg Biffle will run a Roush Performance scheme on the #16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford at Pocono. Created in 1995, Roush Performance Products combines race-proven technologies with advanced automotive engineering to continually provide customers the ultimate driving experience – the perfect combination of racecar and road car. Crew chief Matt Puccia on Pocono: “We had a respectable finish at Pocono earlier this year so we have some good notes to look back on. We can also take some of what we learned at Indy this past weekend and apply it to Pocono since the two tracks have similar characteristics. Our Roush Performance Ford for this weekend is the same chassis we raced at the first Pocono so I’m looking forward to getting a good run.” On Monday, the Roush Fenway Racing #16 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series teams wrapped up the RFR Wellness Challenge, naming Team Biffle the champions. Biffle’s team totaled 232 active minutes, 87,176 steps and 19,710 calories burned for the week (RFR), see an image of the car on Jayski.com’s #16 Team Schemes page.(7-31-2015)

  • The U.S. Air Force returns to sponsor the #43 at Pocono: The U.S. Air Force will return to the #43 Ford this weekend at Pocono Raceway for their second of three races this season. Almirola drove the patriotic paint scheme earlier this year at Charlotte for Memorial Day weekend (and will run again at Phoenix in November). “The King” Richard Petty will join Smithfield and their “Helping Hungry Homes” program this weekend to donate protein to Second Harvest Food Bank of Lehigh Valley & Northeast Pennsylvania in partnership with Weis Markets. The donation will take place at Weis Markets on Route 611, Tannersville Plaza in Tannersville, Penn. Saturday, August 1 at 11am. In addition to the donation, the first 50 fans to arrive prior to the start of the donation will receive a wristband to participate in an on-site autograph session following the donation presentation, during which Petty will sign one item per fan.(RPM), see an image of the car on Jayski.com’s #43 Team Schemes page.(7-31-2015)

  • SunEdison Becomes the Official Solar Energy Partner of NASCAR: NASCAR and SunEdison, the world’s largest renewable energy development company, today announced SunEdison as the Official Solar Energy Partner of NASCAR Green. This new partnership builds on the expanded use of solar technology across the sport, particularly at race team shops and race tracks across the country. Over the next three years, SunEdison and NASCAR will embark on an effort to educate millions of NASCAR fans on the financial and environmental benefits of solar power use. SunEdison plans to work with NASCAR partners, tracks and teams on commercial-scale solar solutions. The White House cited this newly forged partnership as a prime example of making renewable energy accessible to all U.S. homeowners.(NASCAR)(7-31-2015)
  • Pocono Grand Marshal, Honorary Starter and Special Guests: Pocono Raceway and Microsoft announced Jeremy Korst, General Manager of Windows Brand and Product Marketing, will serve as the Grand Marshal for the Windows 10 400 at “The Tricky Triangle” on Sunday, August 2. Jason Campbell, Windows Group Product Marketing Manager will serve as the Honorary Starter. Pre-race activities, featuring a concert by Rebel Dawg Records recording artist, Eric Lee Beddingfield, will begin starting at 11 am. Additionally, local up-and-coming musician, Alyssa Golden, will perform the National Anthem.
    Pocono Raceway will be hosting several special events through the Windows 10 400 race weekend, including:
    · 50/50 Raffle to Benefit the Children’s Hospital at Lehigh Valley Hospital – Pocono Raceway and the Mattioli Foundation are hosting this June race weekend’s 50/50 Raffle to benefit the Children’s Hospital at Lehigh Valley Hospital. In June, the overall weekend jackpot exceeded $45,000, with one fan taking home nearly $23,000. Fans should look out for 50/50 Raffle volunteers, who will be roaming the entire facility, wearing bright yellow shirts all weekend long. One lucky fan will be announced before the end of Sunday’s race as the winner of the raffle. Fans will be supporting a great cause with the chance to go home with a big check.
    · Infield Block Party and Pocono Raceway Fireworks This Saturday – The public is invited to attend Pocono Raceway’s Infield Block Party and Fireworks show this Saturday night. For a $5 cash donation, per vehicle, to our local fire department, fans may enter the Gate 1 Tunnel starting at 5 pm ET on Saturday, June 6. Events include live music, the Barley Creek Brewing Company Wiffle Ball Field, great food, a bar for the adults, slot-car racing for the kids and, rumor has it, PBR is bringing their very own mechanical bull. For more information please visit poconoraceway.com/blockparty14.
    · Jimmie Johnson Experience featuring NASA’s ‘Rockets 2 Racecars’ Program – Three-time Pocono winner Jimmie Johnson will visit for a kids-focused question-and-answer session, which also includes activities for kids presented by the NASA ‘Rockets 2 Racecars’ program, before Sunday’s race. Passes are available for $48 for a family four pack and $20 for individual passes. For more information, please visit poconoraceway.com/jj48. Note: Sunday Grandstand Gate Admission ticket also required for entry.
    · Halftime Party – The Pocono Raceway Halftime Party is back for the 2015 season. Fans, ages 21 and up, are invited to this event, located inside Chalet Village, with a Halftime Party Pass between laps 60-120 of Sunday’s NSCS race. This event will include bar games, big screen televisions to watch the race broadcast, Coors Light and food. The cost to attend the Halftime Party is $19. For more information, please visit poconoraceway.com/halftime. Note: Sunday Grandstand Gate Admission ticket also required for entry.
    · New Double-Sided Video Boards Debut – While attending the Windows 10 400 race weekend, be sure to tell us what you think about the brand-new, double-sided video boards located on both ends of pit road. Nearly 60% of the Pocono Raceway infield will now have a sightline to these video boards. Tag us with your comments and/or photos about the video boards on Twitter or Instagram, using @poconoraceway and don’t forget to include our official race weekend hashtags, #Windows10_400 or #WhatTurn4, with your posts!
    The Windows 10 400 race weekend, taking place July 31-August 2, will include the stars of the NSCS, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and ARCA Racing Series Presented by Menards. Friday tickets start at $10 and Saturday tickets are available for $20 for adults. Kids, ages 12 and under, are admitted free to all events on Friday and Saturday, with accompaniment of an adult ticket holder. Tickets to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Sunday start at $45 for adults and $22.50 for children, ages 12 and under. To purchase your tickets today, please visit www.poconoraceway.com or call 1-800-RACEWAY (1-800-722-3929).(Pocono Raceway)(7-31-2015)
  • Dillon fastest in happy hour: #3-Ty Dillon was quickest during happy hour for the US Cellular 250 with a speed of 133.012mph. He was followed by: #62-Brendan Gaughan, #28-TJ Bell, #54-Drew Herring, #2-Brian Scott, #33-Brandon Jones, #9-Chase Elliott, #22-Ryan Blaney, #18-Daniel Suarez, and #7-Regan Smith. 39 drivers participated in the session. See complete results on the Iowa practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(7-31-2014)
  • Daniel Suarez fastest in first practice: #18-Daniel Suarez was fastest during opening practice at Iowa Speedway with a speed of 133.367mph. #33-Brandon Jones was second, followed by: #88-Ben Rhodes, #3-Ty Dillon, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #62-Brendan Gaughan, #60-Chris Buescher, #22-Ryan Blaney, #54-Drew Herring (practicing for Erik Jones), and #1-Elliott Sadler. 37 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Iowa practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(7-31-2014)
  • Indianapolis XFINITY TV Ratings NASCAR Xfinity Series racing from Indianapolis drew a 1.5 overnight rating on NBC Saturday afternoon, tying Phoenix in March as the series’ third-highest rated race of the season in the metered markets. Only Talladega in May (1.6) and the season-opener from Daytona in February (1.7) scored a higher overnight.(Sports Media Watch)(7-31-2015)
  • Dillon fastest in final truck practice: #33-Austin Dillon was fastest in final practice for the Pocono Mountains 150 at Pocono Raceway with a speed of 166.482mph. He was followed by #4-Erik Jones, #51-Kyle Busch, #17-Timothy Peters, #98-Johnny Sauter, #05-John Wes Townley, #29-Brad Keselowski, #19-Tyler Reddick, #11-Ben Kennedy, #88-Matt Crafton. 33 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Pocono practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(7-31-2015)
  • Dillon fastest in final practice: #33-Austin Dillon was fastest in final practice for the Pocono Mountains 150 at Pocono Raceway with a speed of 166.482mph. He was followed by #4-Erik Jones, #51-Kyle Busch, #17-Timothy Peters, #98-Johnny Sauter, #05-John Wes Townley, #29-Brad Keselowski, #19-Tyler Reddick, #11-Ben Kennedy, #88-Matt Crafton. 33 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Pocono practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(7-31-2015)
  • Entry list: There are 30 trucks on the preliminary entry list for next Saturday’s Pocono Mountains 150 at Pocono Raceway. A few notes:
    Kevin Harvick in the 00;
    Ryan Ellis in the 28;
    Brad Keselowski in the 29;
    Austin Dillon in the 33;
    The 50 is TBA;
    Kyle Busch in the 51;
    Matt Tifft in the 54;
    Garrett Smithley in the 63;
    (7-24-2015)
    UPDATE: Mason Mingus added in the 15; Todd Peck added in the 40; Kyle Martel added in the 59 to bring entries to 33;
    (7-27-2015)
    UPDATE 2: The 03 and 57 trucks have been added to bring entries to 35;
    (7-29-2015)
    UPDATE 3: The 57 and 59 trucks withdrew; Kyle Martel was listed in the 59, now in the MAKE #50;
    (7-31-2015)
    See the complete list on the Pocono entry list page.


    News from July 30, 2015


  • Statements from MWR, CGR, Felix Sabates & Michael Waltrip:
    Statement from Michael Waltrip Racing: “Rob Kauffman, co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, has agreed to buy an interest in Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. The companies will continue to operate separately and compete against each other for the remainder of the 2015 season. They are also currently evaluating ways to field the most competitive race teams possible to provide an excellent platform for their partners and employees for the 2016 season and beyond. More details will follow in due course”.(MWR)
    Statement from Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates “We confirm that Rob Kauffman has agreed to acquire an interest in the team. Further discussions regarding the 2016 season and beyond are underway.”(CGR)
    Felix Sabates Statement to SXM NASCAR “I’m not going anywhere. This is about making our team stronger, a three car team is stronger than a two car. But the rumors that Rob is buying me out are not true, my last race will be five years from September 9th. I will be 75 years old then and will be done.”(SXM NASCAR)
    Statement from Michael Waltrip: “My focus is on 2015 and fulfilling the commitment we have made to our partners and Toyota which is placing our teams in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. There are a lot of details yet to be sorted regarding 2016. I will work closely with Rob Kauffman and our sponsors to formulate the best way forward.”(MWR)(7-30-2015)

  • MWR to Chevy? Ragan to return? What about Vickers? UPDATE 3 denied?: What in the world will Toyota Racing’s Sprint Cup program look like next year? One persistent, hot rumor features a manufacturer swap of sorts, with Rob Kauffman, currently the principal owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, taking his racing interests and partnering with a Chevy team. Furniture Row Racing is currently eyeing the Toyota camp with an ardor that has progressed well beyond flirtation.
    Two potential partnerships mentioned for Kauffman are Chip Ganassi Racing and Richard Childress Racing. Ganassi absorbed Dale Earnhardt Inc. and Martin Truex Jr. into the fold back in 2009. RCR expressed interest in acquiring a minority partner after Chartwell Investments expressed a desire to sell its stake in the company in 2012. Kauffman did not offer a definitive reply when asked about a possible realignment.
    Furniture Row’s Barney Visser has been more forthcoming. The Denver, Colorado-based team owner hopes to make a manufacturer decision in the next few weeks to accommodate a possible restructuring with Toyota for next year.
    Although FRR currently receives no financial support from Chevrolet, the team’s move could open the door for Kauffman to enter into a technical alliance with RCR, with whom the #78 currently shares data. However, sources told Motorsport.com that Ganassi appears to be the frontrunner for Kauffman’s capital at this time.
    Michael Waltrip Racing’s driver lineup likely hinges on Aaron’s continued support with the #55 team. Both Kauffman and Clint Bowyer, who is in the first year of a three-year contract, are high on driver David Ragan. Aaron’s has been a sponsor of Michael Waltrip’s since 2000 but has yet to renew with MWR. A decision on the company’s involvement could come in the next six to eight weeks.
    Last week Brian Vickers expressed interest in returning to racing. Given the unpredictability of Vickers situation, Kauffman isn’t sure whether they could accommodate the driver. “…The most important thing right now is his health. I haven’t really had a conversation with him regarding coming back to racing and the like. It’s a big medical issue that I haven’t been involved with up until now.,” Kauffman said. “He loves racing, so I’m sure he does (want to return), but I think it would be a challenge to try and figure something out–but I would never say never.”(Motorsport)(7-23-2015)
    UPDATE: David Wilson, president of Toyota Racing Development, told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Tuesday that the manufacturer has its sights set on more teams making the 2015 Chase while also looking ahead to its 2016 lineup. Michael Waltrip Racing with Clint Bowyer’s #15 team and David Ragan’s #55 are the manufacturer’s two highest-ranked drivers without wins, sitting 15th and 24th respectively in the standings. Based on points, the #15 driver is currently in the provisional Chase Grid, but if Busch makes the top 30, Bowyer will be bounced without a win. As the manufacturer attempts to add those MWR teams to this year’s Chase, Wilson wasn’t certain about the organization’s future with Toyota.
    “We are talking to a number of organizations about the future, and certainly in the near-term, we’re not sure what Michael Waltrip Racing is going to do,” Wilson said. “They’ve yet to announce their plans. Certainly we have had a rich history in the sport together. We got our butts kicked together in 2007, our first year, and you forge very close and personal relationships when you have those trials together. Whatever they decide to do, we certainly wish nothing but the best for them.”
    Wilson has acknowledged discussions with #78 Furniture Row Racing owner Barney Visser about the Denver-based team’s potential manufacturer move from Chevrolet to Toyota. But the TRD president suggested that Furniture Row, like Toyota itself, was focused on its 2015 Chase efforts. “Regarding Furniture Row Racing, again they haven’t announced their plans for next year certainly,” Wilson said. “I imagine they’re focusing on getting Martin Truex well-positioned in the Chase as well and competitive.”(NASCAR.com)(7-29-2015)
    UPDATE 2: Michael Waltrip Racing principal Owner Rob Kauffman is close to purchasing Felix Sabates’ stake in Chip Ganassi Racing, according to multiple industry sources, which would cause Kauffman to drop his affiliation with MWR if the sale is completed. Kauffman, who has been with MWR for eight years, would take on Sabates’ minority stake in the team, while CGR principal Owner Chip Ganassi would continue to retain majority control, according to sources. It is unclear if Sabates will hold onto a small stake to retain his affiliation with the team or if he will be dropping the affiliation entirely.
    Sources said that Kauffman would take one of the two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series entries at MWR – the #15 Toyota driven by Clint Bowyer – with him to CGR. Because MWR’s sponsors, including 5-Hour Energy, Aaron’s, Peak, AAA and Maxwell House, have yet to determine their next move, it is unclear whether the operation, which also has the #55 currently driven by David Ragan, would form an alliance or merge with another team, or pursue some other option. CGR execs had no comment; MWR did not respond to e-mails by presstime.
    Ganassi Racing currently has two Sprint Cup entries – the #1 McDonald’s / Cessna Chevy driven by Jamie McMurray and the #42 Target Chevy driven by Kyle Larson. The combined three-car entity will remain with Chevrolet, which is the current supplier to CGR in the Sprint Cup Series. Kauffman also is chair of the Race Team Alliance, which was founded last year. Whether his role with the RTA will be affected is unclear.(Sports Business Daily)(7-29-2015)
    UPDATE 3: Felix Sabates, part owner in Chip Ganassi Racing’s NASCAR operation, disputed a published report Wednesday by Sports Business Daily claiming Rob Kauffman was close to purchasing Sabates’ stake in the team. “I am not going anywhere,” Sabates said. “I am having too much fun. Plus, I have unfinished business. I need to sit at the head table in Las Vegas.”(Motorsport)(7-30-2015)

  • McMurray running a colorful paint scheme at Pocono: The #1 Chevy driven by Jamie McMurray will feature the colorful paint scheme for Lexar products. Lexar is a long-standing partner of Chip Ganassi Racing Teams (CGRT). Lexar products continue to help CGRT enhance the way drivers and engineers gather and analyze data from the race cars. CGRT uses Lexar products in a variety of different capacities throughout the organization with its Verizion IndyCar, TUDOR United Sports Car Championship and NASCAR XFINITY and Sprint Cup Series teams, utilizing Lexar SD memory cards, CompactFlash memory cards and Lexar USB flash drives.
    ” Wes Brewer, vice president and general manager, Lexar: “We look forward to watching Jamie take on Pocono Raceway behind the wheel of the #1 Lexar Chevy. With its unique twists and turns, the Pocono track always adds an element of excitement to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and we can’t wait to see Jamie accomplish his goals sporting the Lexar brand.”(CGR), see images of the car/scheme on Jayski.com’s #1 Team Schemes page.(7-30-2015)

  • Red-and-white throwback on the #3 at Darlington: In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Richard Childress circled NASCAR’s tracks in a classic #3 red-and-white Chevy. More than 30 years later, the Chevy his grandson, Austin Dillon, drives will honor the historic paint scheme during the 2015 Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. For this race, the #3 American Ethanol Chevy will shed its usual green-and-black design for the red-and-white colors.(Lionel / RCR Facebook), see an image of the car on Jayski.com’s #3 Team Schemes page.(7-30-2015)

  • Pocono Raceway Track Notes & History – Thursday:
    · Opened in 1968 as a three-quarter-mile track, Pocono Raceway held the first race on the 2.5-mile track in 1971.
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race was in 1974 – won by Richard Petty, Dodge, 115.593 mph, 08/04/1974.
    · The 2.5-mile track was repaved during the fall of 2011.
    · 2012 marked the first season the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono were scheduled for 400 miles. Prior to 2012 all NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races were 500 miles at Pocono Raceway.
    (NASCAR)(7-30-2015)

  • Buescher back in the #34 at Watkins Glen: Chris Buescher will return to the #34 Ford next week to go road-course racing at Watkins Glen International. It will be the Xfinity Series points leader’s sixth Sprint Cup race with Front Row Motorsports.(FRM Facebook)(7-30-2015)

  • Chevrolet On The Verge Of Its 750th Win: With one more visit to Victory Lane, Chevrolet would notch its 750th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win. Here are some numbers detailing Chevrolet’s NSCS history:
    76 different drivers have piloted a Chevrolet to Victory Lane
    30 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championships
    38 Manufacturers’ championships – including the last 12
    70 different tracks where Chevrolet drivers have won a race
    23 Daytona 500 wins
    Jeff Gordon boasts the most wins in a Chevrolet (92), followed by Jimmie Johnson (74), Dale Earnhardt (73), Darrell Waltrip (60) and Cale Yarborough (48). Last week, Chevrolet’s 12-race win streak at Indianapolis – the longest active streak by a manufacturer at any track – was snapped. Chevrolet has won the last six races at Pocono, the new longest active streak at any track.(NASCAR), see Jayski.com’s Manufacturers Championship / Points page for current standings, all-time manufacturers win list and more.(7-30-2015)

  • Written warnings after Indianapolis: NASCAR issued written warnings to two teams this week for multiple inspection failures last weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The #31 Chevy of Ryan Newman was warned for failing prerace inspection twice. The #13 Chevy of Casey Mears was warned for failing prequalifying inspection twice. The Sprint Cup Rule Book states in section 12.5.3.1.c that if the same team receives two warnings during two consecutive events – whether a points event or not – then the team faces a P1 penalty that could include one or more of the following: Deduction of practice time, deduction of qualifying time, last choice in selecting pits, delay in order of inspection and/or other penalties. NASCAR has emphasized teams getting through inspection without needing too many attempts. Teams were warned in April about formalized penalties for failing to pass inspection. There were four teams (#27-Menard, #15-Bowyer, #11-Hamlin and #21-Blaney) that received warnings after the previous race at New Hampshire but avoided a warning in consecutive events.(NBC Sports)(7-30-2015)

  • Ragan unsure of future at MWR: David Ragan, 10 starts into his role as driver of the Michael Waltrip Racing #55 Aaron’s Toyota, said he’s yet to speak with MWR officials, or anyone else, about his future role with the organization. “I haven’t talked about next year with anybody for anything,” Ragan said before the start of an open test on Wednesday at Bristol Motor Speedway. “In regards to some of the rumors that are out there, I’ve read just like everybody else has online, but all I can do is the best I can do week in and week out and hopefully everything will take care of themselves.” Aaron’s, a long-time MWR sponsor and currently the primary sponsor for the #55 entry, has yet to announce its plans beyond the 2015 season. Ragan said he would like to remain at MWR going forward if that is an option. “I like everyone at MWR and the Aaron’s folks have been great to work with,” he said. “We’ve got a good thing going … hopefully we can keep it going. That’d be fun.”(NASCAR.com)(7-30-2015)
  • added images of the #1 Lexar#16 Roush Performance Parts#35 MDS and #42 Suave Menschemes that will run at Pocono in August.

  • NASCAR will proceed with Michigan downforce package: NASCAR officials confirmed Wednesday they will proceed as planned with a test of their high-drag aerodynamic package on Sprint Cup Series cars next month at Michigan. Cup teams and their representatives took part in a previously-scheduled meeting on Wednesday with NASCAR competition executives and expressed concerns over the package’s performance last weekend at Indianapolis. NASCAR, however, plans to give the package another try at Michigan with little, if any changes. The package was desired to help spur more passing and “pack racing” but came far short of expectations in Sunday’s Brickyard 400.(Motorsports)(7-30-2015)

  • NASCAR’s new merchandise tent to debut at Pocono: The race weekend marks the unveiling of NASCAR’s new approach to team merchandising, said Kevin Heaney, spokesman for Pocono. Instead of individual merchandise trailers, the new NASCAR Fanatics Tent will offer a shaded area for race fans to pick up hats, models, T-shirts and other memorabilia. A ribbon-cutting for the tent is scheduled Friday morning. The tent opens 9:30 a.m. Friday and 8 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. There’ll be no more waiting in line for a clerk inside a merchandise hauler to hand over an item for closer look, Heaney said. “It’s all touch and feel,” he said. “You can do it yourself.” The new model levels the playing field for smaller race teams that may be unable to afford a merchandise hauler. “We are the first track to have this,” Heaney said. Other attractions include the Pocono Medical Kids Zone, a host of displays including most branches of the military and NASA in the Fan Fair and the Infield Block Party open to the public starting at 4:30 p.m. Saturday. Admission to the block party is a $5 donation per vehicle to the Tunkhannock Township Volunteer Fire Co., and fireworks follow about 9:15 p.m.(The Express-Times)(7-30-2015)

  • Johanna Long in the #97 at Iowa: Johanna Long has experience racing in Xfinity Series with 20 races in 2013 and 21 races in 2014. Obaika Racing looks forward to expanding their driver repertoire with Johanna’s inclusion even as they maintain their relationship with their current driver Peyton Sellers, who has driven the #97 Obaika Racing Xfinity car for the last 15 races.(Obaika Racing)(7-30-2015)
  • Associate sponsor on board with KBM in Pocono: Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) announced today that for the sixth consecutive year Toyota of Scranton will serve as an associate sponsor for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway. Toyota of Scranton, a six-time winner of the Toyota Motor Sales Presidents Award, will have associate decal placement on all three of KBM’s Tundras for the Pocono Mountains 150, which takes places this Saturday, Aug. 1 at the dealership’s home-state track. KBM’s driver lineup for the Pocono Mountains 150 will feature owner-driver Kyle Busch making his first Truck Series start of 2015 in the #51 Dollar General Tundra, Sunoco Rookie of the Year points leader Erik Jones in the #4 Tundra and fellow rookie Matt Tifft in the #54 ToyotaCare Tundra.(Kyle Busch Motorsports)(7-30-2015)

  • Gaulding joins KBM: Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) announced today 17-year-old NASCAR Next alumnus Gray Gaulding will pilot the #54 Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Toyota Tundra for three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series events in 2015. Gaulding’s first race will be on the road course at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park in Bowmanville, Ont., Aug. 30, followed by New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon on Sept. 26 and Martinsville (Va.) Speedway on Oct. 31.(Kyle Busch Motorsports)(7-30-2015)
  • Smooth Tunnel Turn set to greet NASCAR drivers at Pocono: Those bumps that jostled drivers and rattled cars in the Tunnel Turn [2nd of three turns] at Pocono Raceway are gone. Track officials smoothed the racing surface in the turn and drivers should have a more comfortable ride this weekend when NASCAR returns to Pocono Raceway. A section of the track about 170 feet by 28 feet was milled, leveled and repaved about a week after the June race there. Also, a section of the apron about 170 feet by 12 feet was leveled and repaved. That will create a much different setting from June when the bumps surprised drivers and caused some challenges.(NBC Sports)(7-30-2015)
  • Martinsville Speedway Offers Fans a Jeff Gordon Ticket Package: For more than 20 years fans at Martinsville Speedway have grown accustom to seeing Jeff Gordon dominate. After all, he has eight wins, 28 top-five finishes and more than 3700 laps led. However, the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 on Nov. 1 marks the final start for Gordon at the famous half-mile speedway as a full-time driver. In an effort to give fans the opportunity to see the famous 24, with Gordon behind the wheel one last time, Martinsville Speedway is offering a $124 Jeff Gordon Ticket Package that includes a special commemorative T-shirt celebrating his historic run at the track, a ticket to see Gordon in a moderated question-and-answer session in the Green Flag Experience on race morning and a frontstretch ticket in the Blue Ridge Tower for the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500. The race may mark Gordon’s last shot to tie or break some historic Martinsville Speedway records. Should Gordon qualify on the pole on Virginia Lottery Pole Day, it would move him into a tie with Darrell Waltrip for the most Martinsville poles all-time. If Gordon finishes 10th or better he will tie Richard Petty for the most all-time top-10s and if he leads 41 laps, he will pass Cale Yarborough for the most laps led all-time at Martinsville. While many drivers struggle with learning how to navigate the unique half-mile track, it came second-nature to Gordon. In 1993 he made his first Cup start at Martinsville. He qualified third, finished eighth and never looked back. In his 45 career Martinsville starts he has only finished outside of the top-10 nine times and has completed 99.5% of the laps. The Jeff Gordon Ticket Package is on sale now and can be purchased by calling 877.RACE.TIX or online at www.martinsvillespeedway.com.(Martinsville Speedway)(7-30-2015)


    News from July 29, 2015


  • MWR to Chevy? Ragan to return? What about Vickers? UPDATE2 : What in the world will Toyota Racing’s Sprint Cup program look like next year? One persistent, hot rumor features a manufacturer swap of sorts, with Rob Kauffman, currently the principal owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, taking his racing interests and partnering with a Chevy team. Furniture Row Racing is currently eyeing the Toyota camp with an ardor that has progressed well beyond flirtation.
    Two potential partnerships mentioned for Kauffman are Chip Ganassi Racing and Richard Childress Racing. Ganassi absorbed Dale Earnhardt Inc. and Martin Truex Jr. into the fold back in 2009. RCR expressed interest in acquiring a minority partner after Chartwell Investments expressed a desire to sell its stake in the company in 2012. Kauffman did not offer a definitive reply when asked about a possible realignment.
    Furniture Row’s Barney Visser has been more forthcoming. The Denver, Colorado-based team owner hopes to make a manufacturer decision in the next few weeks to accommodate a possible restructuring with Toyota for next year.
    Although FRR currently receives no financial support from Chevrolet, the team’s move could open the door for Kauffman to enter into a technical alliance with RCR, with whom the #78 currently shares data. However, sources told Motorsport.com that Ganassi appears to be the frontrunner for Kauffman’s capital at this time.
    Michael Waltrip Racing’s driver lineup likely hinges on Aaron’s continued support with the #55 team. Both Kauffman and Clint Bowyer, who is in the first year of a three-year contract, are high on driver David Ragan. Aaron’s has been a sponsor of Michael Waltrip’s since 2000 but has yet to renew with MWR. A decision on the company’s involvement could come in the next six to eight weeks.
    Last week Brian Vickers expressed interest in returning to racing. Given the unpredictability of Vickers situation, Kauffman isn’t sure whether they could accommodate the driver. “…The most important thing right now is his health. I haven’t really had a conversation with him regarding coming back to racing and the like. It’s a big medical issue that I haven’t been involved with up until now.,” Kauffman said. “He loves racing, so I’m sure he does (want to return), but I think it would be a challenge to try and figure something out–but I would never say never.”(Motorsport)(7-23-2015)
    UPDATE: David Wilson, president of Toyota Racing Development, told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Tuesday that the manufacturer has its sights set on more teams making the 2015 Chase while also looking ahead to its 2016 lineup. Michael Waltrip Racing with Clint Bowyer’s #15 team and David Ragan’s #55 are the manufacturer’s two highest-ranked drivers without wins, sitting 15th and 24th respectively in the standings. Based on points, the #15 driver is currently in the provisional Chase Grid, but if Busch makes the top 30, Bowyer will be bounced without a win. As the manufacturer attempts to add those MWR teams to this year’s Chase, Wilson wasn’t certain about the organization’s future with Toyota.
    “We are talking to a number of organizations about the future, and certainly in the near-term, we’re not sure what Michael Waltrip Racing is going to do,” Wilson said. “They’ve yet to announce their plans. Certainly we have had a rich history in the sport together. We got our butts kicked together in 2007, our first year, and you forge very close and personal relationships when you have those trials together. Whatever they decide to do, we certainly wish nothing but the best for them.”
    Wilson has acknowledged discussions with #78 Furniture Row Racing owner Barney Visser about the Denver-based team’s potential manufacturer move from Chevrolet to Toyota. But the TRD president suggested that Furniture Row, like Toyota itself, was focused on its 2015 Chase efforts. “Regarding Furniture Row Racing, again they haven’t announced their plans for next year certainly,” Wilson said. “I imagine they’re focusing on getting Martin Truex well-positioned in the Chase as well and competitive.”(NASCAR.com)(7-29-2015)
    UPDATE2: Michael Waltrip Racing principal Owner Rob Kauffman is close to purchasing Felix Sabates’ stake in Chip Ganassi Racing, according to multiple industry sources, which would cause Kauffman to drop his affiliation with MWR if the sale is completed. Kauffman, who has been with MWR for eight years, would take on Sabates’ minority stake in the team, while CGR principal Owner Chip Ganassi would continue to retain majority control, according to sources. It is unclear if Sabates will hold onto a small stake to retain his affiliation with the team or if he will be dropping the affiliation entirely.
    Sources said that Kauffman would take one of the two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series entries at MWR – the #15 Toyota driven by Clint Bowyer – with him to CGR. Because MWR’s sponsors, including 5-Hour Energy, Aaron’s, Peak, AAA and Maxwell House, have yet to determine their next move, it is unclear whether the operation, which also has the #55 currently driven by David Ragan, would form an alliance or merge with another team, or pursue some other option. CGR execs had no comment; MWR did not respond to e-mails by presstime.
    Ganassi Racing currently has two Sprint Cup entries – the #1 McDonald’s / Cessna Chevy driven by Jamie McMurray and the #42 Target Chevy driven by Kyle Larson. The combined three-car entity will remain with Chevrolet, which is the current supplier to CGR in the Sprint Cup Series. Kauffman also is chair of the Race Team Alliance, which was founded last year. Whether his role with the RTA will be affected is unclear.(Sports Business Daily)(7-29-2015)

  • #98 team loses tungsten from car UPDATE penalized: The #98 Ford driven by Timmy Hill had a multitude of issues in Friday’s Sprint Cup practice. In the second session, a 35-pound tungsten weight fell off the car. NASCAR typically takes a dim view of ballast that is not secured properly. The sanctioning body confiscated the jettisoned weight and will address the matter in next week’s competition meeting. In Happy Hour, Hill’s Ford spun off Turn 4 and slammed nose-first into the inside wall, forcing his team to go to a backup car. As a tow truck was removing Hill’s car from the track, the back of the car scraped the track, knocking off the rear extension. Hill didn’t participate in the opening practice session.(NASCAR Wire Service)(7-25-2015)
    UPDATE: The #98 team has been assessed a P3 level penalty for having an unattached weight leave the car during practice on July 24 (Sections 12:1; 12.5.3.3.1; 20.3.5). Crew chief Scott Eggleston has been fined $25,000; suspended from the next NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship points race; and placed on NASCAR probation through Dec. 31. Car chief Kevin Eagle has been suspended from the next NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship points race and placed on NASCAR probation through Dec. 31. Car owner Mike Curb will lose 15 championship car owner points (NASCAR), the team was 39th in Owners points with 178 and was 18 points ahead of #23-BK Racing, which has 160 and is 40th. #98 Premium Motorsports now has 163 owners points.(7-29-2015)

  • Johnson working on contract extension UPDATE: Just weeks before NASCAR’s “silly season” of accelerated contract negotiation and frenzied driver movement speculation, six-time Sprint Cup champion #48-Jimmie Johnson remains without an extension to remain at Hendrick Motorsports. But that sounds like just a formality. Before the 5-hour Energy 301 on Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Johnson told USA TODAY Sports that while there was “nothing new” in completing negotiations, he doesn’t foresee a move from the team with which he has raced his entire 15-year Sprint Cup career. “(Team owner) Rick (Hendrick) likes to get things signed up and done well in advance, so there definitely have been conversations,” Johnson said. “We’re kind of going down the road to get that all buttoned up and put together. But I’m home. I’m not going anywhere.”(USA Today)(7-20-2015)
    UPDATE: Johnson met with members of the media at Indianapolis and discussed his contract extension, the transcript in part:
    Q) WHAT IS THE LATEST ON YOUR CONTRACT EXTENSION AND WHETHER OR NOT YOU EXPECT CHAD (KNAUS, CREW CHIEF) TO BE BACK NEXT YEAR?
    Johnson: “We still have, is it next year on our contract? I don’t even know. We are obviously not concerned. We have been getting things buttoned up with Lowe’s, with Hendrick, with Chad and myself, all of that. Like I said, I think last week, I’m home it’s just a formality at this point to get everything kind of finished up and done.”(Team Chevy)(7-29-2015)
  • New Hampshire Motor Speedway devalued by $100M since purchase: When Speedway Motorsports Inc. bought New Hampshire Motor Speedway in January 2008 for $340 million in cash, it was an indication of what a track that hosted NASCAR races was worth then. A little less than eight years later, despite increased television revenues, the track-operating company founded by Bruton Smith devalued the 1.058-mile racetrack by approximately $100 million as part of its 2015 second quarter financial report that was released Wednesday. “If we had to do it again, obviously we wouldn’t pay quite so much,” SMI chief financial officer Bill Brooks said in a conference call Wednesday with financial analysts. With the facility having two Sprint Cup dates and an avid fan base, SMI agreed to the deal in September 2007 just prior to the financial downturn. For comparison, it bought Kentucky Speedway, a 1.5-mile facility with no Sprint Cup dates at the time, for $78.3 million in December 2008. Brooks said of the $340 million purchase price for the New Hampshire track, approximately $300 million was for the two Sprint Cup race weekends the facility had at the time. He said the approximate $100 million devaluation of the facility relates to the worth of the events to the track.
    The seating capacity at New Hampshire was recently reduced from 95,000 to 88,000. SMI reported Wednesday that the track has had ongoing lower-than-anticipated revenues for its major racing events, and its chance to recoup those revenues were limited “similar to challenges faced by many major sports” of increased entertainment options and more people preferring to watch the events at home. SMI recorded a non-cash charge of $98.9 million on its latest financial statement for the devaluation of New Hampshire and change in goodwill resulting from NASCAR’s transition to selling merchandise from a centrally located tent and not primarily through haulers and kiosks at the track. SMI will get an income tax benefit of $38.4 million as a result of the write-down.
    The operator of eight tracks that have Sprint Cup races (Atlanta, Bristol, Charlotte, Kentucky, Las Vegas, New Hampshire, Sonoma and Texas), SMI reported that ticket revenue was down 3.2% through June but that includes a weather-plagued Atlanta weekend in February — its 2014 event was in August — and does not include Kentucky, which last year had its race in June but this year was in July. Brooks said many of the 2015 race weekends are showing increased revenues over 2014.(ESPN) and see the full report at Speedway Motorsports Inc. – 2015 second quarter financial report.(7-29-2015)

  • Bristol to hold fan day during test session: Up to 12 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams are expected to test at Bristol Motor Speedway Wednesday, July 29, an event that the Speedway is making free to the public as part of the “It’s MY Bristol Baby!” campaign to express the Speedway’s appreciation to local fans and supporters. Bristol Motor Speedway Fan Day activities run 9:00am-5:00pm/et. Beginning at Noon, the Speedway will offer interactive displays and kids’ activities including show cars, mascot appearances, photo sharing, inflatables and face painting. Participating Sprint Cup drivers will be announced the week of July 27. Guests can enter the Speedway through the North or South entrances off Volunteer Parkway, and the stands via Gate 7.(BMS)(7-11-2015)
    UPDATE: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams will be looking to get a jump on the competition for next month’s annual night race at Bristol Motor Speedway as several teams are scheduled to take part in an open test this Wednesday at the 0.533-mile track. Team Penske driver #22-Joey Logano, the defending winner of the Irwin Tools Night Race, heads up a list that includes #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (Roush Fenway Racing), #1-Jamie McMurray (Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates), #55-David Ragan (Michael Waltrip Racing), #27-Paul Menard (Richard Childress Racing), #19-Carl Edwards (Joe Gibbs Racing), #10-Danica Patrick (Stewart-Haas Racing), #21-Ryan Blaney (Wood Brothers Racing), #5-Kasey Kahne (Hendrick Motorsports) and #43-Aric Almirola (Richard Petty Motorsports). A two-day Goodyear tire test previously scheduled for Monday and Tuesday has been canceled.(NASCAR.com)(7-28-2015)
  • Pocono Goodyear Tire Facts & Notes: Teams in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Camping World Truck Series will run the same Goodyear tire codes at Pocono this week . . . this is the same combination of left- and right-side tires that these teams have run at Pocono since 2012 . . . Pocono is the only track on which either of these tire codes are scheduled to be run this season . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners on all four tire positions at Pocono . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire (Goodyear), see full notes, tire limits, tire codes and more on the Pocono Race Info page.(7-29-2015)

  • #34 Promotes National Root Beer Float Day: Brett Moffitt and the #34 Ford team will make sure NASCAR fans don’t forget an important holiday as they watch Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono. Moffitt’s Ford will promote National Root Beer Float day, celebrated on August 6, when A&W All American Food restaurants will give out free Root Beer Floats and encourage customers to make a donation to help American veterans in return. The campaign, which benefits Wounded Warrior Project (WWP), will be promoted in a special orange-and-brown paint scheme on Moffitt’s #34 Ford at Pocono. Visit any participating A&W restaurant on Aug. 6 between 2:00pm and closing time and receive one small Root Beer Float free of charge upon request. In return, guests will be encouraged to make a donation to WWP. Donors will be able to give directly at participating restaurants or online at www.rootbeerfloatday.com.(FRM), see an image of the scheme on Jayski.com’s #34 Team Schemes page.(7-29-2015)

  • Kyle Busch going for 4th consecutive win: #18-Kyle Busch took the checkered flag at Indianapolis on Sunday for his third straight victory as well as his fourth in the last five races. In the Chase Era, Jimmie Johnson is the only other driver to log three or more consecutive wins. Johnson strung together four straight victories in the 2007 Chase on his way to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship and won three consecutive races in the 2004 Chase. Busch is the first driver in the Chase Era to win three consecutive races during the regular season. Jeff Gordon is the only other active driver to win three consecutive races. He has achieved the feat on three occasions. Gordon captured four straight victories in 1998, in addition to three straight in 1996 and from 1998-99. Busch has 33 NSCS wins since his career began in 2004, the second most in the Chase Era behind Johnson’s 68.(NASCAR), see the full list of drivers who have won three or more consecutive races on Jayski.com’s All-Time Wins page.(7-29-2015)

  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Indianapolis Race for Good Dental Health with the #24 3M Team: More than 500 students at LeGore Boys & Girls Club and Keenan-Stahl Boys & Girls Club in Indianapolis participated in a special high-speed oral health education event Thursday that left them with big smiles and new tips for improving their dental health. It was all thanks to NASCAR Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 3M Chevy, NASCAR celebrities, 3M ESPE Dental, the ADA Foundation’s Give Kids A Smile program, CareCredit, Henry Schein Cares and Church & Dwight. The ADA Foundation’s Give Kids A Smile program rolled into the Boys & Girls Clubs of Indianapolis as part of the race week at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.(3M ESPE Dental)(7-29-2015)
  • Michael Self in the #01 at Iowa: Utah driver Michael Self is scheduled to make his debut in the NASCAR Xfinity Series Saturday at Iowa Speedway in a Chevy entered by JD Motorsports with Gary Keller. Self, a six-time winner in the K&N Pro Series West, will drive the JD Motorsports #01 Nebraska Transport Company Chevy as a fill-in for regular driver Landon Cassill in Saturday’s U.S. Cellular 250 at Newton, Iowa. Self also is scheduled to drive in several other races for the Gaffney, S.C. based team this Xfinity season. Self won three times in the K&N West series in 2012 and scored three more wins in 2013. He finished fourth in points in 2013. Included in his K&N experience are six races at Iowa, where he has two wins, four top fives and five top 10s. Nebraska Transport Company joins Self, making their sponsorship debut in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this weekend at Iowa Speedway. Self has extensive karting experience and is a driving instructor at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah.(Johnny Davis Motorsports)(7-29-2015)

  • Lally driving the #90 at Road America: One year after making an impressive return to NASCAR’s XFINITY Series, four-time Rolex 24 at Daytona winner Andy Lally will return to the Road America circuit in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, driving the #90 Anderson’s Maple Syrup Chevy for King Autosport/SSGreenlight Racing in the Road America 180 Fired Up by Johnsonville on Saturday, August 29. Competing last year in the same car, the 2011 Sprint Cup Rookie of the Year teamed with crew chief Jason Miller to run as high as third in the closing laps, only to have a broken track bar bolt to relegate them to seventh place in the final rundown. The team is hoping that past experience and additional sponsorship will move them further up the finishing order this season. Located in Cumberland, Wisconsin, just a few hours from the circuit, Anderson’s Maple Syrup has been a family-run business for over 80 years. A small, tight-knit organization very similar to King Autosport/SSGreenlight Racing, the company will take part in the “Anderson’s Maple Syrup Fan Appreciation Ride;” an interactive campaign for Lally’s fans and the motorsport community at large. Lally and his team will give away 90 prizes between now and his Road America return. Additionally, Lally and Anderson’s will give away an opportunity for all 90 winners to ride along with him, placing every winner’s name on the TV panel of his Chevy Camaro for the race. The team will receive support from another Wisconsin-based organization, Quicksilver Powersports Lubricants.(Godfather Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #90 team paint schemes page.(7-29-2015)
  • Bell subbing for Yeley on Friday: J.J. Yeley will be performing “Double Duty” this weekend as he competes in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Pocono Raceway and the NASCAR XFINITY Series event at Iowa Speedway. TJ Bell will practice the #28 Toyota on Friday for the two practices at Iowa Speedway while Yeley is in Pocono for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice and qualifying.(Integrity Sports Marketing)(7-29-2015)
  • New look for Buescher at Iowa: The #60 Ford Mustang of Chris Buescher carries the Pearson’s Salted Nut Roll colors this weekend at Iowa Speedway. The nougat, caramel and salted peanut covered candy is produced by Pearson’s Candy Company in St. Paul, Minn. Pearson’s Candy Company, founded in 1909, is also known for other classic brands such as Bit-O-Honey, Mint Patties, Nut Goodie and Bun Bar. (Roush Fenway Racing), see an image of the car on the #60 team paint schemes page.(7-29-2015)
  • Tagliani in the #22 at Mid-Ohio: Alex Tagliani will drive the #22 Discount Tire Ford Mustang for Team Penske in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 15. A native of Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Tagliani competed in two XFINITY Series races for Team Penske in 2014, winning one pole at Road America and posting two top-five finishes. He has made six XFINITY Series starts over the course of his racing career. He has also competed in one NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race and has memorable performances in the Verizon IndyCar Series, sports car competition and the Australian V8 Supercar Series. Tagliani is also a former Indianapolis 500 pole winner, capturing the top spot for the “Greatest Spectacle In Racing” in 2011. He is a former winner in the Verizon IndyCar Series, taking the checkered flag at Road America in 2004.(Team Penske)(7-29-2015)
  • One Lucky Fan to Serve as Pure Michigan 400 Honorary Starter: Excitement for this year’s Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway is revving up and with less than a month to go until race day, Pure Michigan announced today that one lucky fan will have the chance to serve as honorary starter. For the third year in a row, Pure Michigan is turning to fans to help decide who will wave the green flag on August 16. The Pure Michigan 400 Honorary Starter contest launches today and will run through midnight on Thursday, August 6. To enter, fans simply have to share, in 50 words or less, why they want to serve as honorary starter and signal the start of the race at MIS. Entries may be submitted directly to the Pure Michigan Facebook page via the contest tab. Fans will also have the chance to vote on which entry they think best embodies the honorary starter role. The winner will be chosen from the 10 submissions with the most fan votes based on which submission displays a passion for racing and all things Pure Michigan. In addition to serving as the honorary starter, the prize package includes four tickets to the Pure Michigan 400 and a number of VIP experiences on race day. All other expenses including travel to Michigan International Speedway will be at the winners own expense. Tickets for the races are on sale at MISpeedway.com or by phone at 800-354-1010.(MIS)(7-29-2015)


    News from July 28, 2015


  • Danica Patrick close to new deal with Stewart-Haas: For those who have speculated the GoDaddy Girl may be going somewhere else, think again. Stewart-Haas Racing team owner Gene Haas told Motorsport.com on Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway that he’d like to get Danica Patrick’s deal signed “as soon as possible” — and he expects to do just that. “We expect her to stay with Stewart-Haas Racing,” Haas told Motorsport.com. “We have some very good sponsors that are in the process of signing up. But we knew that. We knew going in that there’s just a lot of demand for her. Let’s face it, she’s the only woman on the whole grid so she’s going to get a lot of press, and that’s what sponsors want to see. We told her we wanted her to come back. She’s been very flexible about everything. It all has to happen at the same time. You can’t really sign a driver until you have a sponsor. You have to know how much money you’re going to get from the sponsor and that kind of translates into the deal you make with the driver. I think it’s all going good.” With Patrick attracting a variety of sponsors, Haas says the hold-up in an announcement is simply dotting i’s and crossing t’s. There has been speculation that categories from the mortgage and restaurant industry could be among the liveries gracing the hood of the #10 Chevy next year. “Personally, I think that’s all just a balance between – we’re probably going to have more than one sponsor and we’re going to have to get them all aligned. We have to work GoDaddy. It’s just a balancing act. Obviously, we’d like to get it done as quickly as possible. I’m sure that, when all the contracts are signed, it will happen within a few weeks.”(Motorsport)(7-27-2015)
    UPDATE: On Tuesday, SHR spokesman Mike Arning said in an email to FOXSports.com that the organization is moving toward re-signing Patrick and securing a new primary sponsor for her car in the 2016 season. “Re-signing Danica Patrick remains a priority for Stewart-Haas Racing, and we’re confident an agreement will be formalized soon,” Arning wrote. “Discussions regarding sponsorship for Danica and the No. 10 team are progressing nicely. Our timetable to have her contract and sponsorship in place by the end of the summer is certainly attainable.”(FoxSports)(7-28-2015)

  • Buddy Baker facing death with predictable courage: Buddy Baker is facing the end of his life with the same courage he demonstrated during a long NASCAR career, when he sometimes drove at more than 200 mph. “I’m right with The Man Upstairs,” Baker said Saturday when I [Tom Higgins] visited him along with Humpy Wheeler and Waddell Wilson at the Baker home on the western shore of Lake Norman near Terrell. “If I feared death I never would have driven a race car.” Baker, 74, is stricken with inoperable lung cancer, discovered in December.(full article at Charlotte Observer)(7-28-2015)

  • Kyle Bush talked to Stewart about injury: #18-Kyle Busch talked to the media Saturday morning at Indy, the transcript in part:
    Q) What was your mindset after the accident and did you speak with Tony Stewart about his injury?
    Busch: “Tony (Stewart) was actually the first one to the hospital — as soon as the Daytona 500 was over he was there. He actually told everybody that was on his plane that they were going to wait. He was there for about four hours. We had a good talk, we had a good discussion about just what it was like and the process that he had to go through and how long it was probably going to be or what it was going to be. In all reality, our injuries were the same but entirely different. His was much more severe than mine. Just being able to talk with him, my mindset was okay. At first I was like, ‘I’m never going to race again and I don’t know what I’m going to do,’ all those things go through your mind. You just continue to power through and listen to your doctors and those that are around you and of course my wife and the support system that I had. I wouldn’t call it painless, there was certainly a lot of pain, but it went really, really well as far as you could say any injury healing goes. I was pretty pleased with everything.”(Toyota Racing)(7-28-2015)

  • Drivers say rules package at Indy not effective UPDATE: NASCAR might need to go back to the drawing board in its quest to create more competitive stock car racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. NASCAR officials debuted a “high-drag” aero package in Sunday’s Brickyard 400, featuring a nine-inch spoiler and other measures intended to slow the cars down and punch a big hole in the air, which officials hoped would create drafting and pack racing. But the racing didn’t look much different from previous NASCAR races at Indy. With the exception of some wild restarts, the racing was largely single file.
    #4-Kevin Harvick called it a “huge science project that probably didn’t really change that much.” “I think everybody put in a lot of effort to try to really make everything a lot better, spent a lot of money, but I don’t know that we accomplished everything that we were looking to accomplish,” Harvick said.
    #2-Brad Keselowski was disappointed the changes weren’t more effective. “I think we were all expecting there to be more drafting than there was,” Keselowski said. “I don’t think the draft was much different than last year and the penalty for being behind someone in the corner was more significant.”
    #5-Kasey Kahne saw a “little gain” in terms of being able to close on cars on straightaways. Added #78-Martin Truex Jr.: “I thought it was harder to pass than it’s ever been. Similar to last year with the really big spoiler, there was a little bit more of a suck-up on the straightaway. But I didn’t feel like it was enough.”
    All said, Harvick wondered whether the changes were worth the time and money they cost NASCAR teams. “I know my team did a lot of extra work to come to this race after we had already come here and tested and already spent that money to come here and test for a few days,” Harvick said. “And then to come back and have to race something different was a huge undertaking for the teams for a huge science project that probably didn’t change that much.”
    NASCAR is expected to use a similar package when teams run at Michigan International Speedway on Aug. 16.(USA Today)(7-27-2015)
    UPDATE: NASCAR officials will not rush to judge the performance of the high-drag aero package used in Sunday’s Brickyard 400 although drivers complained about its impact on the race. NASCAR Vice Chairman Mike Helton said Monday on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio’s “The Morning Drive” that officials will “take time” in assessing the package. “We’re digesting the signs from it,” he told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “The fans and the industry saw the race unfold as we did. There were certainly some components, the balance of competition, the opportunities that this package presented for the drivers to perform were of benefit, but we’ve heard the expressions of some of the drivers that didn’t like some of characteristics of the project. We can absorb all the of the science and the data we collect, including talking to the industry, the drivers, the crew members and the competition departments of the teams and the car owners to take all of that now and absorb it. That’s part of the reason we created this specific package for Indianapolis – to see the characteristics of it, knowing that there are a lot of personalities in the garage area that have different opinions … but it’s on NASCAR to come up with the one that we put in front of the fans on each individual racetrack each weekend. So, we’ll take time.” The package is scheduled to be used again next month at Michigan International Speedway.(NBC Sports)(7-28-2015)

  • Bristol to hold fan day during test session July 29 UPDATE: Up to 12 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams are expected to test at Bristol Motor Speedway Wednesday, July 29, an event that the Speedway is making free to the public as part of the “It’s MY Bristol Baby!” campaign to express the Speedway’s appreciation to local fans and supporters. Bristol Motor Speedway Fan Day activities run 9:00am-5:00pm/et. Beginning at Noon, the Speedway will offer interactive displays and kids’ activities including show cars, mascot appearances, photo sharing, inflatables and face painting. Participating Sprint Cup drivers will be announced the week of July 27. Guests can enter the Speedway through the North or South entrances off Volunteer Parkway, and the stands via Gate 7.(BMS)(7-11-2015)
    UPDATE: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams will be looking to get a jump on the competition for next month’s annual night race at Bristol Motor Speedway as several teams are scheduled to take part in an open test this Wednesday at the 0.533-mile track. Team Penske driver #22-Joey Logano, the defending winner of the Irwin Tools Night Race, heads up a list that includes #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (Roush Fenway Racing), #1-Jamie McMurray (Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates), #55-David Ragan (Michael Waltrip Racing), #27-Paul Menard (Richard Childress Racing), #19-Carl Edwards (Joe Gibbs Racing), #10-Danica Patrick (Stewart-Haas Racing), #21-Ryan Blaney (Wood Brothers Racing), #5-Kasey Kahne (Hendrick Motorsports) and #43-Aric Almirola (Richard Petty Motorsports). A two-day Goodyear tire test previously scheduled for Monday and Tuesday has been canceled.(NASCAR.com)(7-28-2015)

  • Where is Rick Mast? At age 15, Rick Mast sold a 4-H project steer for $575 to get money for his first race car. He rebuilt the wrecked ’57 Chevy with the blown engine and began winning dirt-track races at Natural Bridge Speedway in western Virginia. That $575 deal led to a solid 15-year NASCAR career that left Mast, now 58, comfortable and content. Mast’s career highlight was winning the pole and leading the first two laps of the inaugural Brickyard 400 at Indy in the #1 Skoal Ford of Richard and Leo Jackson. At 45, chronic carbon-monoxide poisoning ended Mast’s career. He began suffering early in 2002, lacking energy and enduring headaches, fatigue and nausea. “It’s like the worst hangover in your life,” he said at the time. “You want to throw up but can’t; your head is pounding; you feel awful.” After struggling through 50 laps at Charlotte in May of that year, he stepped away from the No. 90 Ford of owner Junie Donlavey. “Those 50 laps wore me down,” Mast says, “so I knew I was done. I’d tried to gut it out since March because racers never want to show weakness. Nobody knew what it was for a long time. I just knew that racing wasn’t important on the days I couldn’t get out of bed. I wasn’t worried about racing, I was worried about dying.” Mast retired early in 2003. He talked with NASCAR brass about the dangers of carbon-monoxide exposure, which led to the organization moving headers to the right side of its cars and improving cockpit ventilation. He and his wife, Sharon, live in western Virginia, where he owns a hazmat cleanup company. His son works for Major League Baseball, and his twin daughters attend James Madison University and the University of Virginia, respectively.(Autoweek)(7-28-2015)

  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Pocono:
    #11-Denny Hamlin 108.3
    #48-Jimmie Johnson 106.9
    #41-Kurt Busch 105.9
    #24-Jeff Gordon 103.5
    #14-Tony Stewart 97.6
    #42-Kyle Larson 95.7
    #31-Ryan Newman 95.3
    #19-Carl Edwards 94.2
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr 92.6
    #5-Kasey Kahne 92.1
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2015 races among active drivers at Pocono Raceway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)(7-28-2015)
  • McClure, Hal Martin form K&N team: NASCAR XFINITY Series drivers Eric McClure and Hal Martin announced the formation of Martin-McClure Racing. The duo will field a NASCAR K&N Pro Series East entry beginning with this weekend’s #ThanksKenny150 East vs. West shootout, at Iowa Speedway. With hopes of opening doors for young development drivers, Martin and McClure are excited for their new project. “This team is something Eric and I have discussed in great depth over the past few months and the timing is right for us to enter competition and lay the foundation for an organization that will meet the long-term goals we’ve laid out,” stated Martin. “It’s an opportunity for us to give back to the sport we love, while providing a competitive and professional environment for young drivers as they transition from their respective backgrounds to the NASCAR national series.” Behind the wheel of MMR’s #39 in Iowa will be Chad Finchum, an up-and-coming driver from Knoxville, Tenn. In addition to their Iowa Speedway entry, MMR will also enter the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Dover International Speedway on October 2nd. As they tackle their first two races together, MMR is also actively seeking development drivers and sponsorship opportunities for the 2016 season.(MMR)(7-28-2015)
  • Herring to practice and qualify for Jones at Iowa: During Iowa Speedway XFINITY Series practice on Friday afternoon, since Erik Jones will be competing in the Camping World Truck Series event in Pocono, the $54 Monster Energy seat will see Joe Gibbs Racing XFINITY Series veteran Drew Herring behind the wheel. Herring will also qualify the $54 Toyota on Saturday and remain on site for the race, in case of any travel delays for Jones. Otherwise Jones will travel to Iowa in time for Saturday’s night-race start. Herring, over his XFINITY Series career has seen 15 starts, earned one recorded pole, one top-five and five top-10 finishes. His Iowa track statistics include five races, two poles (one earned earlier this year at Iowa Speedway — recorded for Erik Jones who then started in the back of field due to driver change) and 65 laps led.(Joe Gibbs Racing)(7-28-2015)
  • Congrats to Hemric, Ruston: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Daniel Hemric and Kenzie Ruston, who competes in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Series, are engaged. Both announced the news Tuesday on Twitter. Hemric, 24, finished fifth last week at Eldora and is seventh in the points standings in his rookie season. Ruston, 23, is 14th in the K&N points standings in her second full season in that series.(NBC Sports)(7-28-2015)
  • Tanya Tucker to sing National Anthem at Darlington: Joining Darlington Raceway’s celebration of the early 1970’s during Labor Day weekend will be country music icon Tanya Tucker. Tucker, a longtime Nashville recording artist, will perform the National Anthem live on NBC for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 on Sept. 6. For four decades, Tucker’s sultry voice and vivacious stage presence has helped to make her one of the most admired and respected female vocalists in the country music genre. Part of that appeal lies in the fact that her resume contains some of the most groundbreaking songs of the format’s history. Songs like Alex Harvey’s Delta Dawn, Dallas Frazier’s What’s Your Mama’s Name and David Allan Coe’s Would You Lay With Me (In A Field Of Stone) firmly established Tanya Tucker as an artist from whom you could always expect the unexpected. And, the best is yet to come for this future Country Music Hall of Fame member. With a new album forthcoming, the powerhouse vocalist is set to remind listeners just why artists such as Miranda Lambert and Gretchen Wilson consider her to be one of their biggest influences. Tucker’s anthem performance adds yet another element to an already exciting 1970’s-style pre-race. She will join legendary rock band Grand Funk Railroad, who will be performing the pre-race concert for the 66th running of the Bojangles’ Southern 500.(Darlington Raceway)(7-28-2015)


    News from July 27, 2015


  • Indianapolis TV Ratings: NBCSN’s live telecast of NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from historic Indianapolis Motor Speedway led the network to its most-watched telecast ever yesterday, averaging 4.7 million viewers. Viewership peaked from 6:30 – 6:45pm/et as 5.6 million viewers watched Kyle Busch race to his third consecutive Sprint Cup victory, and his fourth win in five events. NBCSN NASCAR Sprint Cup viewership highlights include:
    ” With 4.7 million average viewers and a 3.0 national HH rating, Sunday’s Brickyard 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race stands as NBCSN’s most-watched and highest-rated telecast ever.
    ” Yesterday’s Sprint Cup race ranks as the most-watched NASCAR event on cable since last year’s season-ending championship race from Homestead (5.2 million on ESPN).
    ” The Brickyard event marks consecutive weeks of growth for Sprint Cup racing on NBCSN. With 4.7 million average viewers, the Brickyard 400 is up +27% from New Hampshire (3.7 million) and up +47% from Kentucky (3.2 million).
    ” Fans streamed 3.7 million minutes of live NASCAR coverage this past weekend via NBC Sports Live Extra.
    (NBC Sports)
    AND NASCAR scored a season-high overnight on cable for Sunday’s Brickyard 400. NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Indianapolis earned a 2.9 overnight rating on NBCSN Sunday afternoon, down 9% from last year (3.2) and down 15% from 2013 (3.4), both on ESPN. The 2.9 is the highest of the season on cable (nine telecasts), topping the previous mark of 2.5 for Martinsville on Fox Sports 1 in March. Despite the season-high, the Brickyard 400 was the eighth of nine races on cable this season to have a decline in overnights. Kentucky was the lone exception, pulling even with last year in the metered markets. Indianapolis was the top market for Sunday’s race with an 11.9 rating, down 21% from last year (15.0) and down 13% from 2013 (13.7). By comparison, the IndyCar Series Indianapolis 500 scored a 12.7 in the market on ABC.(Sports Media Watch)
    See past 2015 races, five-year comparison on the 2015 TV Ratings page.(7-27-2015)

  • Danica Patrick close to new deal with Stewart-Haas: For those who have speculated the GoDaddy Girl may be going somewhere else, think again. Stewart-Haas Racing team owner Gene Haas told Motorsport.com on Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway that he’d like to get Danica Patrick’s deal signed “as soon as possible” — and he expects to do just that. “We expect her to stay with Stewart-Haas Racing,” Haas told Motorsport.com. “We have some very good sponsors that are in the process of signing up. But we knew that. We knew going in that there’s just a lot of demand for her. Let’s face it, she’s the only woman on the whole grid so she’s going to get a lot of press, and that’s what sponsors want to see. We told her we wanted her to come back. She’s been very flexible about everything. It all has to happen at the same time. You can’t really sign a driver until you have a sponsor. You have to know how much money you’re going to get from the sponsor and that kind of translates into the deal you make with the driver. I think it’s all going good.” With Patrick attracting a variety of sponsors, Haas says the hold-up in an announcement is simply dotting i’s and crossing t’s. There has been speculation that categories from the mortgage and restaurant industry could be among the liveries gracing the hood of the #10 Chevy next year. “Personally, I think that’s all just a balance between – we’re probably going to have more than one sponsor and we’re going to have to get them all aligned. We have to work GoDaddy. It’s just a balancing act. Obviously, we’d like to get it done as quickly as possible. I’m sure that, when all the contracts are signed, it will happen within a few weeks.”(Motorsport)(7-27-2015)

  • Drivers say rules package at Indy not effective: NASCAR might need to go back to the drawing board in its quest to create more competitive stock car racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. NASCAR officials debuted a “high-drag” aero package in Sunday’s Brickyard 400, featuring a nine-inch spoiler and other measures intended to slow the cars down and punch a big hole in the air, which officials hoped would create drafting and pack racing. But the racing didn’t look much different from previous NASCAR races at Indy. With the exception of some wild restarts, the racing was largely single file.
    #4-Kevin Harvick called it a “huge science project that probably didn’t really change that much.” “I think everybody put in a lot of effort to try to really make everything a lot better, spent a lot of money, but I don’t know that we accomplished everything that we were looking to accomplish,” Harvick said.
    #2-Brad Keselowski was disappointed the changes weren’t more effective. “I think we were all expecting there to be more drafting than there was,” Keselowski said. “I don’t think the draft was much different than last year and the penalty for being behind someone in the corner was more significant.”
    #5-Kasey Kahne saw a “little gain” in terms of being able to close on cars on straightaways. Added #78-Martin Truex Jr.: “I thought it was harder to pass than it’s ever been. Similar to last year with the really big spoiler, there was a little bit more of a suck-up on the straightaway. But I didn’t feel like it was enough.”
    All said, Harvick wondered whether the changes were worth the time and money they cost NASCAR teams. “I know my team did a lot of extra work to come to this race after we had already come here and tested and already spent that money to come here and test for a few days,” Harvick said. “And then to come back and have to race something different was a huge undertaking for the teams for a huge science project that probably didn’t change that much.”
    NASCAR is expected to use a similar package when teams run at Michigan International Speedway on Aug. 16.(USA Today)(7-27-2015)

  • Heat a factor with Indy rules package: #18-Kyle Busch continued his hot streak with a win at Indy. Busch and the rest of the field were all full of hot air at the Brickyard. The cars were extremely hot inside the cockpit because the aerodynamic package trapped air inside. Busch was one of many drivers physically drained following Saturday’s race, and Sunday’s Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway seemed to have the same consequence. This same rules package is scheduled to be used next month at Michigan. “I got a huge blister on my foot,” Logano said. “I think the extended bumper cover on the back of these things doesn’t let the airflow underneath the car like it used to without it, and I think it builds the inside temperature up. I’ve got sweat in my eyes. It’s just too hot inside those cars.” Teams had their choice to seal openings in the window used for hoses that supply air to the driver. With the window sealed, the car would have the needed downforce for the package used at Indy. The drivers paid for it with a sweaty Sunday. #40-Landon Cassill held his own “science experiment” and weighed himself before and after the race. His pre-race weight was 155.4 pounds. Cassill, who said he consumed 110 ounces of fluids and 1,100 calories, weighed 147.4 pounds after the race. “That’s a 10% gross loss of body weight, getting it back to 5% with fluid replacement. I think I’d like to see closer to 3%,” he tweeted. He also tweeted: “few more stats from the 110oz of fluids I took in…1,100 Cal, 1,978mg of sodium, 264g Carbs, 572mg Potassium.”(Associated Press)(7-27-2015)

  • Ty Dillon still unsure of 2016 plans: As Ty Dillon spent Friday preparing for Saturday’s XFINITY race at IMS, the 23-year-old third-generation driver from Lewisville, North Carolina seemed just as uncertain as he did six or seven weeks ago about what exactly he’ll be doing next year. “Nothing’s really changed yet, no announcements yet, but we’re still working and the plan is still to be in Cup full time,” Dillon said. Whether that will be with RCR or not, though, remains to be seen, after Childress said last month at Sonoma Raceway that other teams had expressed interest in his grandson. In the meantime, Dillon is focused on more immediate matters — specifically, trying to close his points deficit on XFINITY Series championship leader Chris Buescher and second-place Chase Elliott. With the season about to enter its stretch run, Dillon believes it’s go time if he wants to make a serious title bid — even if there seems to be no big rush to nail down plans for 2016.(FoxSports)(7-27-2015)

  • Chase clinch scenarios for Indianapolis UPDATE: Only seven races remain before the 16-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field is set. Here’s what we know:
    #4-Kevin Harvick, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #48-Jimmie Johnson have fulfilled two of the three Chase criteria. All three have the multiple wins that guarantee a spot among the top 16 winners, and have locked up a top 30 spot. All they need to do now is start each of the remaining races in the regular season.
    A few drivers can join them this weekend. If #41-Kurt Busch leaves Indy with a 289 point lead over 31st, he will lock up a top 30 spot. #22-Joey Logano, #78-Martin Truex Jr., #2-Brad Keselowski, #20-Matt Kenseth and #11-Denny Hamlin all need to win, and in some cases get some help to lock up a top 30 spot (leaving Indy with a 289 point lead over 31st).(NASCAR)(7-23-2015)
    UPDATE: Kurt Busch’s 8th place finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway was enough to lock up his position in the top 30 and a spot on the Chase.(7-27-2015)
  • Indianapolis Race and Commercial Breakdown of the Crown Royal presents the Jeff Kyle 400:For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday’s race. Began recording at the Invocation of the race at 3:20 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 6:48 PM. NBCSN was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 107
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 58
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 85
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 55
    Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 22
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 18
    Number of times NBCSN utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 4
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast (including company logos ‘floating’ in corners of the screen): 82
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 4 min. 15 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 3:20 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 6:48 PM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 208
    Minutes of race broadcast: 167
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 41
    Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 10
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of ‘mystery cautions’ (debris not shown): 0
    Total race brdcst time 167 Total comm. brdcst time 41
    See full reports, sponsor links, much more details at CawsnJaws.com.(7-27-2015)


    News from July 26, 2015


  • Entry List for the Windows 10 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway is posted, 43 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including: #32-Kvapil, #33-Kennedy, #62-TBA, #98-TBA.
    Since only 43 cars are entered, all drivers will make the race.
    See the full entry list on Jayski.com’s Pocono Entry List

  • Kyle Busch wins at Indianapolis: #18-Kyle Busch won the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for his 4th win of the season, 1st win at Indianapolis, and 33rd career win. It his 3rd win in a row and 4th win in the last five races. It is also Toyota’s first win at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and breaks a 12 race winning streak for Chevy.
    The race ended under a green-white-checkered finish after a late caution when #6-Bayne spun.
    #22-Logano finished 2nd followed by #4-Harvick, #78-Truex, Jr., #11-Hamlin, #15-Bowyer, #20-Kenseth, #41-Busch, #42-Larson, and #2-Keselowski
    Harvick’s driver points lead is unchanged, he’s 69 points ahead of #22-Logano.
    Pole sitter #19-Edwards ran near the front most of the day, but go loose on a late restart and fell back into traffic. He finished 13th.
    #24-Gordon, making his final Brickyard start, spun out and hit the wall. He had to go to the garage for repairs and finished 42nd.
    Busch is now 32nd in the points standings and just 23 points out of 30th. He must be in the top 30 in points to be eligible for the Chase. He now needs around a 24th place average finish to make the top 30 in the 6 remaining races before the Chase begins.
    There were 16 lead changes among 6 drivers. There were 9 cautions for 36 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 131.656mph.
    See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Penalty Report (pdf) and Lap Summary Report (pdf).
    (7-26-2015)
  • Race Fast Facts – Indianapolis:
    Kyle Busch won the 22nd Annual Crown Royal presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at The Brickyard, his 33rd victory in 374 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his fourth victory and fifth top-10 finish in 2015. It was his third win in a row in 2015.
    This is his first victory and ninth top-10 finish in 11 races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    Joey Logano (second) posted his fourth top-10 finish in seven races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It is his 15th top-10 finish in 2015.
    Kevin Harvick (third) posted his ninth top-10 finish in 15 races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    Matt DiBenedetto (32nd) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Kevin Harvick leads the point standings by 69 points over Joey Logano.
    This is the first win for Toyota at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The manufacturer now has a win at all active tracks.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(7-26-2015)
  • 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup CHASE Standings:
    [after Indianapolis, race 20 of 36]
    (by wins, then by points standings)
    1) #48-Jimmie Johnson [4 wins], 675, -102 (4th in driver points)
    2) #4-Kevin Harvick [2 wins], 777 (1st)
    3) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [2 wins], 677 -100 (3rd)
    4) #41-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 612, -165 (8th)
    5) #22-Joey Logano [1 win], 708, -69 (2nd)
    6) #78-Martin Truex Jr. [1 win], 668, -109 (5th)
    7) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 638, -139 (6th)
    8) #20-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 615, -162 (7th)
    9) #11-Denny Hamlin [1 win], 591, -186 (10th)
    10) #19-Carl Edwards [1 win], 519, -258 (16th)
    [would be in the Chase via points standings]
    11) #1-Jamie McMurray, 602, -175 (9th in driver points)
    12) #24-Jeff Gordon, 575, -202 (11th)
    13) #31-Ryan Newman, 563, -214 (12th)
    14) #27-Paul Menard, 558, -219 (13th)
    15) #5-Kasey Kahne, 558, -219 (14th)
    16) #15-Clint Bowyer, 538, -239 (15th)
    [has a win but not in the top 30 in drivers points to make Chase]
    32) #18-Kyle Busch [4 wins], 294, 23 pts out of 30th (needs to avg 24th place finish)
    (ties are broken by wins, 2nds, 3rds, etc)
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
    (7-26-2015)
  • Top-10 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Drivers Points Standings:
    [after Indianapolis, race 20 of 36]
    1) #4-Kevin Harvick [2 wins], 777
    2) #22-Joey Logano [1 win], 708, -69
    3) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [2 wins], 677, -100
    4) #48-Jimmie Johnson [4 wins], 675, -102
    5) #78-Martin Truex Jr. [1 win], 668, -109
    6) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 638, -139
    7) #20-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 615, -162
    8) #41-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 612, -165
    9) #1-Jamie McMurray, 602, -175
    10) #11-Denny Hamlin, 591, -186
    (ties are broken by wins, 2nds, 3rds, etc)
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
    (7-26-2015)
  • Indianapolis Rookie of the Year Race Results & Points:
    #83-Matt DiBenedetto, finished 32nd, 11 rookie points
    #34-Brett Moffitt, finished 34th, 10 rookie points
    #26-Jeb Burton, did not qualify, 1 point
    #33-Alex Kennedy, did not race, not entered
    #66-Tanner Berryhill, did not race, not entered
    See the 2015 Rookie of the Year page for rules, standings and more.(7-26-2015)

  • Gordon within reach of record at Brickyard: When #24-Jeff Gordon starts the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at The Brickyard on Sunday, he will become the only driver to have competed in all 22 editions of the Brickyard 400. This is Gordon’s final race in Indianapolis as a full-time driver (although he has left the door open to run selected future races), and he’ll be going for a sixth Brickyard win. A sixth victory would make him the only driver to win six major races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. No driver has won the Indianapolis 500 more than four times, and only Michael Schumacher has won the Formula 1 Grand Prix of Indianapolis five times. Gordon’s most recent win at Indianapolis came last year. On July 27, 2014, he became the first driver to win five NSCS Indianapolis races and tied Schumacher’s record for wins at the track. Like Gordon, Bobby Labonte ran the first 21 races in NASCAR’s highest circuit at Indianapolis, but Labonte isn’t in this year’s field.(ESPN.com)(7-26-2015)

  • McMurray hopeful of Chase spot…even without win: Points tabulations had entered #1-Jamie McMurray’s mid-race calculus by May, as he ran mid-pack in the final 30 laps at Talladega Superspeedway. He could pull out and hope for a push, advance, possibly win what would still stand as his only victory of the season. Or he could ride, amass points, and continue pursuing his first-ever berth in the multiple variations of the Chase for the Sprint Cup that debuted in 2004. “I wanted to pull down, because you want to go win,” McMurray told USA TODAY Sports. “And I came on the radio and asked, ‘How many cars are on the lead lap?’ And they said 32. I was like, I am not willing to give up 12 points for trying to gain five. I didn’t like the risk versus the reward.” McMurray chose points and still managed to follow the line to an 11th-place finish. Those points help him enter the Brickyard 400 on Sunday ninth in the standings, highest among Sprint Cup non-winners.
    Both McMurray and crew chief Matt McCall operate under the assumption that three-race winner #18-Kyle Busch will climb three more rungs to 30th in driver points and leave just five transfer spots available. That impacts their math. “Honestly, as long as Kyle Busch is 99 percent going to make the top 30, which will put him in the Chase, for the most part, if we don’t have someone outside of the top 16 win a race, I wouldn’t say we’re guaranteed in, but I think we’re really comfortably going to be in,” McMurray said. “It’s if you get one or two guys at a road course somewhere or maybe win a fuel mileage race, if they win outside of that, that’s when it gets really tough because you’d have to be in the top 13 or 14 in points.”(USA Today)(7-26-2015)

  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway Race Notes & Facts – Sunday:
    · There have been 21 NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway; one per year from 1994 through 2012.
    · Hendrick Motorsports leads the series in wins at Indianapolis in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with nine; followed by Richard Childress Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing with three each.
    · Four different manufacturers have won at Indianapolis; led by Chevrolet with 16 victories; followed by Ford (three), Dodge and Pontiac each have one.
    · Chevrolet has won the last 12 consecutive NSCS races at Indianapolis – the longest active win streak by a manufacturer in the NSCS at a single track.
    · Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory (MOV) in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Indianapolis Motor Speedway was the August 3, 1997 race won by Ricky Rudd over Bobby Labonte with a MOV of 0.183 second.
    · Four out of the last five NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races have had a MOV larger than one second.
    · Only one of the 21 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races have resulted with a green-white-checkered finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Scheduled No. of Laps/Actual No. of Laps): 2004 (160/161).
    · None of the 21 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway have been shortened due to weather conditions.
    (NASCAR)(7-26-2015)
  • Women’s World Cup Champion Lauren Holiday to drive Pace Car at Brickyard: Indianapolis native Lauren Holiday, a midfielder on the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup-winning U.S. National soccer team, will drive the Chevy SS pace car to start Sunday’s Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard. Holiday attended Ben Davis High School and has played on U.S. National teams for a decade. She has won two Olympic gold medals and has played in two World Cups. In the United States’ 5-2 win over Japan in the championship match on July 5, she scored a goal. This is Holiday’s first public appearance in Indiana since the World Cup. The SS continues Chevrolet’s tradition of pacing races at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Every NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at IMS has been led by a Chevrolet, dating to the first Brickyard 400 in 1994.(IMS)(7-26-2015)


    News from July 25, 2015


  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway have been made.
    Pole sitter #19-Edwards chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #22-Logano took the 2nd pit stall.
    #55-Ragan, who starts 3rd took the 17th pit stall, with an opening in front of it.
    The 43rd and final pit stall was taken by #7-Bowman, who starts 35th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on Jayski.com’s Pit Stall Selection chart.(7-25-2015)
  • Edwards wins Indianapolis pole: #19-Carl Edwards won the Coors Light pole for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with speed of 183.464mph for his 2nd pole of 2015, 1st at Indy and 15th of his career. Edwards has won 2 times from the pole.
    #22-Logano is on the outside pole followed by #55-Ragan, #14-Stewart, #42-Larson, #4-Harvick, #15-Bowyer, #88-Earnhardt, Jr., #18-Busch, #1-McMurray, #27-Menard, and #48-Johnson.
    #31-Newman’s qualifying time was disallowed because the right side window was missing. He will start 43rd.
    Missing the race was: #32-Wise, #26-Burton, #62-Sorenson.
    See the starting lineup, qualifying results round-by-round, qualifying order and more Jayski.com’s Indianapolis Starting Lineup / Qualifying Page.(7-25-2015)
  • Qualifying Fast Facts – Indianapolis:
    Carl Edwards won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 22nd Annual Crown Royal presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at The Brickyard with a lap of 49.056 seconds, 183.464 mph.
    This is his 15th pole in 393 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his second pole and 11th top-10 start in 2015.
    This is his first pole in 11 races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    Joey Logano (second) posted his 14th top-10 start of 2015 and his third in seven races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    David Ragan (third) posted his second top-10 start at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It is his eighth in 20 races this season.
    Brett Moffitt (39th) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(7-25-2015)
  • First Round of Qualifying for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is over, after all drivers made an attempt.
    #14-Stewart 185.548
    #42-Larson 185.410
    #48-Johnson 184.332
    #22-Logano 184.313
    #1-McMurray 184.030
    the rest of the top 12: 4 55 19 15 18 27 88;
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to the final round: 78 41 10 13 11 9 24 16 51 43 20 40 3 47 5 25 17 21 2 95 6 46 7 31 33 38 23 34 32 83 35 26 62 98.
    Drivers who will miss the race: #32-Wise, #26-Burton, #62-Sorenson.
    (7-25-2015)

  • Congrats to Ray & Erin Evernham on the birth of their daughter, Cate Susan Evernham, Saturday morning.(7-25-2015)

  • Teams unsure of impact of rules package at Indy: Tony Gibson’s race car led the final practice Friday for the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but the crew chief was apprehensive rather than excited to see what driver Kurt Busch could do with the #41 Chevy on Sunday. “I am a little nervous,” Gibson told USA TODAY Sports after the final session, led by Busch with a 181.987-mph lap around the 2.5-mile speedway. “But that may be that was just what we had going on. We made our car better, but I am just nervous about it. We got around other cars fairly quick and could do nothing with them just because we got so loose. Typically, we’re not like that here and the bigger tracks. Here it was like the whole car come out of the track.” Gibson said his Stewart-Haas Racing teammates had similar problems. Gibson said he doubts the new high-drag, high-downforce package being utilized this weekend and on Aug. 16 at Michigan International Speedway will engender more slingshot passing at Indianapolis. Cars will close quickly, he said, but seemingly lose the ability to pass because they become unstable when close to each other because of downforce loss.
    General Motors Sprint Cup program director Alba Colon said the true characteristics of the high-drag, high-downforce aerodynamics package deployed this weekend will not be determined until the race Sunday. Although NASCAR added a third practice to the schedule Friday, teams are diverging on strategy in terms of qualifying runs and drafting, making it difficult, Colon said, to determine if the package will augment passing and slingshot-style maneuvering as is the mandate from series chairman Brian France.
    So far, drivers don’t seem optimistic about the package. Kyle Busch tried drafting off Tony Stewart in the second practice, only to curse in frustration after he couldn’t complete a pass. And Denny Hamlin, who was fastest in the first practice, seemed to bite his lip when asked how the new package was working. “Passing will be tough — to say the least,” he said. But Hamlin quickly noted NASCAR is “trying something new” and “I can’t fault them for trying.”
    Several drivers, including Martin Truex Jr., Jamie McMurray and Matt Kenseth, shrugged their shoulders and said it was difficult to predict how the race would turn out until green-flag conditions.(USA Today)(7-25-2015)

  • Superspeedway qualifying format in use at Indianapolis Saturday: Both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series will use the superspeedway qualifying format at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend. The qualifying format was updated to align with the high-draft rule package.
    There will be two rounds of qualifying with drivers turning one timed lap. The qualifying order in the first round will be determined by [highest speed rank from Friday’s practices]. The top-12 drivers from round 1 advance to the final round where their times are reset. The final round qualifying order will be set from slowest to fastest speeds in the first round with starting positions 1-12 determined by the fastest laps in the second session.
    Jeff Gordon won the Coors Light Pole Award under this format at Talladega in May.(NASCAR)(7-25-2015)

  • Higher spoiler causing more limited visibility: The larger spoiler teams are using this weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is causing visibility issues for some NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers. As part of the high-drag aero package intended to enhance passing at a track where passing has been difficult for drivers in previous years, NASCAR has teams running a 9-inch spoiler with a 1-inch wicker bill on it. Part of the spoiler is clear, giving drivers a gap to look through in the rearview mirror, but #22-Joey Logano said he’d like to have had more clear space to look through via his rearview mirror. “It’s challenging to see,” Logano said Friday. “You have a small gap where the spoiler is clear and you can see out of that, and then obviously the wicker (which is not clear) is on top of that, so it’s kind of hard. You only get a certain amount, but I think I can see about five car lengths behind me and any cars that are further back than that I can’t see. That isn’t the end of the world. If they’re five car lengths back, you’re probably not too worried about it anyway. When they get close is when you want to see it, but it is nice sometimes because we don’t know. We’ll see with this whole drafting package down the straightaway when that run is going to start.” #11-Denny Hamlin described his vision through the spoiler as “OK.” #5-Kasey Kahne said he can “see enough. It’s not quite as good as it has been this year, but it’s no worse than what it was not long ago, so it’s not bad.” With the visibility limited, drivers will rely more on spotters this weekend.(NBC Sports)(7-25-2015)

  • #98 team loses tungsten from car; penalty expected: The #98 Ford driven by Timmy Hill had a multitude of issues in Friday’s Sprint Cup practice. In the second session, a 35-pound tungsten weight fell off the car. NASCAR typically takes a dim view of ballast that is not secured properly. The sanctioning body confiscated the jettisoned weight and will address the matter in next week’s competition meeting. In Happy Hour, Hill’s Ford spun off Turn 4 and slammed nose-first into the inside wall, forcing his team to go to a backup car. As a tow truck was removing Hill’s car from the track, the back of the car scraped the track, knocking off the rear extension. Hill didn’t participate in the opening practice session.(NASCAR Wire Service)(7-25-2015)

  • Race Team Alliance joins Rev the Vote for voter registration efforts: Co-chairmen and former U.S. Congressmen Heath Shuler (D-NC) and Connie Mack (R-Fla) announced that Rev the Vote, a nonpartisan Washington D.C.-based organization, has engaged the Race Team Alliance to help promote increased voter registration among racing fans. The Race Team Alliance, formed in 2014, represents 17 top racing organizations who compete in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series. Rev the Vote will leverage the assets and enormous national reach of the RTA membership teams to amplify the importance of voter registration and participation in local and national elections. This agreement allows Rev the Vote to utilize the broad reach of the RTA Member teams. The teams will provide social and digital outreach, as well as, at-track experiences, like hauler tours, pit box seating, meet and greets, hospitality and activation.(Race Team Allaince)(7-25-2015)

  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway Pole Notes & Facts – Saturday:
    · Rick Mast won the inaugural Coors Light pole at Indianapolis in 1994 with a speed of 172.414 mph.
    · 17 drivers have Coors Light poles at Indianapolis, led by Jeff Gordon with three.
    · Two drivers have won consecutive Coors Light poles at Indianapolis: Jeff Gordon (1995-96) and Ernie Irvan (1997-98).
    · Reed Sorenson (07/29/07) is the only active driver to post his first career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light pole at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    · Only three of the 21 (14.2%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Indianapolis have been won from the Coors Light pole: Kevin Harvick (2003), Jimmie Johnson (2008) and Ryan Newman (2013).
    · The pole and the third-place starting positions are the most proficient starting positions in the field, each producing three winners – more than any other starting positions at Indianapolis.
    · Five of the 21 (23.8%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Indianapolis have been won from the front row: three from the pole and two from second-place.
    · 13 of the 21 (65%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Indianapolis have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    · Three of the 21 (14.2%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Indianapolis have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.
    · The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Indianapolis is 27th, by Jeff Gordon in 2001.
    · Qualifying has not been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    (NASCAR)(7-25-2015)
  • XFINITY Entry List:There are 39 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s US Cellular 250 at Iowa Speedway. A few notes:
    The Rick Ware #15 is TBA;
    Kenny Wallace will make his final NASCAR start in the JGR #20;
    Ryan Blaney remains in the #22;
    Dylan Lupton will drive the #25;
    Brandon Jones is in the RCR #33;
    Erik Jones will drive the #54;
    Ben Rhodes makes another start in the #88 for JR Motorsports.(7-25-2015)
    See the complete list on the Iowa entry list page.
  • Regan Smith wins Dash 4 Cash: #7-Regan Smith’s eighth place finish in Saturday’s Lilly Diabetes 250 XFINITY Series at Indianapolis Motor Speedway wasn’t the victory he’d hoped for, but Smith and his JR Motorsports team was still able to celebrate having gotten one step closer to winning a million dollars in the series’ Dash 4 Cash incentive program. While race winner Kyle Busch was hoisting trophies nearby in victory lane, Smith accepted a check for $100,000 as the second round winner of the Dash4Cash program. He also collected $100,000 on May 30, after winning the first round at Dover, Delaware. Any driver who wins the first three Dash 4 Cash awards then wins the final round race outright — Sept. 5 at Darlington — would total $1 million for the effort. Smith bettered championship leader #60-Chris Buescher, #9-Chase Elliott and #62-Brendan Gaughan to claim Saturday’s portion of the winnings. Smith, along with Indianapolis’ runner-up #21-Ryan Blaney, third place finisher #18-Daniel Suarez and fifth place finisher #1-Elliott Sadler now advance and are eligible for the third round of competition Aug. 21 at Bristol Motor Speedway.(NASCAR.com)(7-25-2015)
  • Kyle Busch wins XFINITY race at Indianapolis: #54-Kyle Busch won the Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for his 72nd NASCAR XFINITY Series win. He passed #22-Ryan Blaney on the final lap to take the win. Blaney finished second, followed by #18-Daniel Suarez, #33-Paul Menard, #1-Elliott Sadler, #88-Kevin Harvick, #42-Kyle Larson, #7-Regan Smith, #3-Ty Dillon, and #9-Chase Elliott.
    Points leader #60-Chris Buescher finished 16th.
    There were only 3 cautions for 16 laps and 8 lead changes among 6 leaders. Complete results are on the Indianapolis race results page (pdf).
    (7-25-2015)
  • Indianapolis XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Kyle Busch(i) won the 4th Annual Lilly Diabetes 250, his 72nd victory in 301 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his second victory and fourth top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his second victory and third top-10 finish in four races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    Ryan Blaney (second) posted his first top-10 finish in two races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It is his fifth top-10 finish in 2015.
    Daniel Suarez (third) posted his first top-10 finish in one races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    Daniel Suarez (third) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Chris Buescher leads the point standings by 25 points over Chase Elliott.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-25-2015)
  • XFINITY Driver standings following Indianapolis:
    1) #60-Chris Buescher, 651
    2) #9-Chase Elliott, 626, -25
    3) #3-Ty Dillon, 621 -30
    4) #7-Regan Smith, 600, -51
    5) #1-Elliott Sadler, 594, -57
    6) #6-Darrell Wallace Jr., 568, -83
    7) #18-Daniel Suarez, 558, -93
    8) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 537, -114
    9) #2-Brian Scott, 527, -124
    10) #16-Ryan Reed, 526, -125
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(7-25-2015)
  • Kyle Busch on XFINITY pole at Indianapolis: #54-Kyle Busch won the Coors Light pole for the Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with a track record speed of 180.527mph. #18-Daniel Suarez will start second. The rest of the top 10: #20-Erik Jones, #62-Brendan Gaughan, #33-Paul Menard, #1-Elliott Sadler, #2-Brian Scott, #98-Aric Almirola, #3-Ty Dillon, and #42-Kyle Larson. Did Not Qualify: None. The starting lineup is posted on the Indianapolis starting lineup page (pdf).(7-25-2015)
  • Indianapolis XFINITY Qualifying Notes:
    Kyle Busch(i) won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 4th Annual Lilly Diabetes 250 with a lap of 49.854 seconds, 180.527 mph.
    This is his 44th pole in 301 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first pole and third top-10 start in 2015.
    This is his third pole in four races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    Daniel Suarez (second) posted his 14th top-10 start of 2015 and his first in one races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    Erik Jones(i) (third) posted his first top-10 start at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It is his 14th in 16 races this season.
    Daniel Suarez (second) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-25-2015)
  • Ken Ragan named Director of Atlanta Motor Speedway Legends Program: Ken Ragan has been named director of the U.S. Legends racing program at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Ragan returns to the Speedway after serving as the Legends director from the program’s inception in 1997 through 2001. He replaces Dwight Pilgram, who has retired after four years at the post. The Unadilla, Georgia native competed in 50 career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races over an eight-year span from 1983 to 1990. In his career, he also made five starts in the NASCAR XFINITY Series and earned eight top-10 finishes in 17 ARCA Racing Series races. Ken is the father of current NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver David Ragan.(AMS)(7-25-2015)


    News from July 24, 2015


  • Coverage of Qualifying for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is scheduled for Saturday, July 25, 2015 at 1:10 pm/et.
    Television (TV): NBCSN, 1:00 pm/et
    Radio: Live online at indycarradio.com
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: none
  • Qualifying Order for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is posted. 46 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers scheduled to go out is #98-Hill.
    The final driver scheduled to go out is #11-Wise.
    Qualifying order this weekend is based on overall practice speeds, slowest going out first, fastest going out last.
    See the full qualifying order on Jayski.com’s Indianapolis Qualifying Page.(7-25-2015)
  • Final practice for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is over after 115 scheduled minutes the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #41-Busch 181.987
    #4-Harvick 181.987
    #42-Larson 181.357
    #48-Johnson 180.697
    #78-Truex, Jr. 180.672
    slowest: #83-DiBenedetto 172.735 & #62-Sorenson 168.868
    notes: #98-Hill wrecked off turn 4 and will have to go to a backup car.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the Indianapolis Practice 3 Speeds page (pdf).(7-24-2015)
  • Second practice for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is over after 85 scheduled minutes the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #88-Earnhardt, Jr. 181.466
    #2-Keselowski 181.448
    #5-Kahne 181.408
    #42-Larson 181.378
    #24-Gordon 181.189
    slowest: #62-Sorenson 168.783 & #98-Hill 167.454.
    notes: #11-Hamlin’s team forgot to put the hood pins in before his first run. The hood flew up on his first lap on track. The will not go to a backup, but will replace the hood and windshield on the car.
    Qualifying is scheduled for 1:10pm/et tomorrow.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the Indianapolis Practice 2 Speeds page (pdf).(7-24-2015)
  • First Friday practice for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is over after 85 scheduled minutes the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #11-Hamlin 182.208
    #48-Johnson 181.796
    #4-Harvick 181.756
    #24-Gordon 181.444
    #14-Stewart 181.214
    slowest: #26-Burton 171.707 & #23-Yeley 169.985. No speed: #62-Sorenson & #98-Hill.
    notes: Cup teams will have 3 practices today. This practice is not on TV, but NBC Sports Live Extra has coverage online. Qualifying is scheduled for 1:10pm/et tomorrow.
    #27-Menard made light contact with the outside wall. The team will repair the car.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the Indianapolis Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf).(7-24-2015)

  • Pit road speeding penalties up in 2015: As the race for track position intensifies, drivers push the limits on pit road, contributing to an increase in speeding penalties that raises questions about what should be done. While NASCAR seeks different rules to enhance the racing – Sunday’s Brickyard 400 features a high-drag package to aid passing – the easiest place to gain spots remains pit road. That reward comes with a risk. Pit road speeding penalties are up 17.1 percent compared to this point last year and up 22 percent from two seasons ago. Six drivers, including former champions Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth, were penalized for speeding in last weekend’s Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. With caution laps up 5.7 percent from last year and 11.4 percent from two years ago, drivers have additional chances to stop for service. Pit road also can be crowded throughout a race with a record 91.2 percent of cars running at the finish – nearly 10 percent higher than two years ago. More cars on pit road means more positions to be gained, more risks to take and more mistakes that can be made. The result is that nine of the season’s first 19 Sprint Cup races have had at least five pit road speeding penalties issued with 12 such infractions called at Las Vegas and 11 at Bristol.(NBC Sports)(7-24-2015)

  • Gordon honored in his hometown: In addition to his racing talent, as displayed by his winning 92 Sprint Cup races, #24-Jeff Gordon is known for having an emotional, sentimental side. That was on display Thursday in Pittsboro, Indiana, a town with a population of less than 1,000 when he moved there from California at age 14 so he could legally race. With crowds lining Main Street, Gordon waved to fans during a parade in his honor four days before the Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Gordon won the inaugural Sprint Cup event in 1994 at IMS, just a 20-minute drive from Pittsboro, and has won the race a record five times. The Hendrick Motorsports driver will get one last chance Sunday, as the four-time Sprint Cup champion has announced his retirement from full-time NASCAR racing this year. Gordon delighted the locals — the town has grown to more than 3,000 — with a speech after the parade Thursday afternoon. He was presented by Indiana Gov. Mike Pence with a Sagamore of the Wabash award, which is the highest civilian honor bestowed by the governor. Gordon already has a road named for him in the town. Among the other honors and accolades Thursday during Jeff Gordon Day, the 43-year-old Gordon also was presented an official police badge for the city.(ESPN.com)(7-24-2015)

  • Lilly Diabetes on the #16 at the Brickyard: Ryan Reed and Greg Biffle will both race the #16 Lilly Diabetes Ford in their respective NASCAR series races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, marking Lilly’s first ever Sprint Cup Series start. In an effort to highlight how important it is for everyone to take better control of their health, including those living with diabetes, the crews of both Roush Fenway Racing drivers will compete in a wellness challenge during the week leading into the Brickyard. Both #16 crews will go head-to-head to see who has the most active minutes, takes the most steps and burns the most calories during the week.(Roush Fenway Racing), see an image of the car on the #16 team paint schemes page.(7-25-2015)

  • Aquafina sponsoring Kahne: Next week at Pocono Raceway, Kasey Kahne’s ride will have a “refreshing” new look. The #5 Aquafina Chevy SS will make its debut at “The Tricky Triangle.”(Hendrick Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #5 team paint schemes page.(7-24-2015)

  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway Driver Notes & Facts – Friday:
    · 138 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway; 107 in more than one.
    · Two drivers have competed in all 21 races at Indianapolis: Jeff Gordon and Bobby Labonte.
    · 12 different drivers have won at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, led by Jeff Gordon with five; followed by his Hendrick Motorsports teammate, Jimmie Johnson, with four.
    · Jimmie Johnson is the only driver to have posted consecutive wins at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (2008 and 2009).
    · Six of the seven active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race winners at Indianapolis Motor Speedway participated in at least one or more races before visiting Victory Lane. Jeff Gordon won the Brickyard 400 in his first start at Indianapolis.
    · Ryan Newman competed at Indianapolis Motor Speedway 12 times before winning in 2013; the longest span of any the seven active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winners.
    · Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Matt Kenseth lead the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Indianapolis without visiting Victory Lane at 15 each.
    · Paul Menard (07/31/11) is the only NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver to have posted his first career NSCS win at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    · NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace leads the series in runner-up finishes at Indianapolis with three; followed by Kyle Busch Bobby Labonte, Mark Martin and Matt Kenseth with two each.
    · Jeff Gordon leads the series in top-five finishes at Indianapolis with 12; followed by Tony Stewart and Matt Kenseth with seven each.
    · Jeff Gordon leads the series in top-10 finishes at Indianapolis with 17; followed by Tony Stewart and Mark Martin with 11 each.
    · Ryan Newman leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average starting position at Indianapolis with a 7.143.
    · Jeff Gordon leads NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average finishing position at Indianapolis with a 8.381.
    · Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in laps led at Indianapolis with 528 laps led in 21 starts.
    · Danica Patrick became the first female driver to compete in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2013.
    · Shawna Robinson (08/05/01) is the only other female driver to attempt to compete in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Indianapolis, but she failed to qualify for the event.
    (NASCAR)(7-24-2015)
  • Sad News – Gary G. Cavitt: Gary G. Cavitt (father of #14 Jackman Getty Cavitt), 68, of Owensboro died Wednesday, July 22, 2015, at Owensboro Health Regional Hospital. Gary was born Jan. 30, 1947, in Owensboro. He was a U.S. Air Force veteran, a member of Settle Memorial United Methodist Church and a retired insurance agent. An Owensboro High School graduate, Cavitt played on the 1964 OHS state baseball championship team. After high school, he graduated from Kentucky Wesleyan College, where he also played baseball.(full obituary and services at James H. Davis Funeral Home)(7-24-2015)
  • Daniel Suarez fastest in happy hour: #18-Daniel Suarez was quickest during happy hour for the Lilly Diabetes 250 with a speed of 176.810mph. He was followed by: #54-Kyle Busch, #42-Kyle Larson, #20-Erik Jones, #2-Brian Scott, #33-Paul Menard, #3-Ty Dillon, #22-Ryan Blaney, #25-Alex Bowman, and #39-Ryan Sieg. 39 drivers participated in the session. See complete results on the Indianapolis practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(7-24-2014)
  • Kyle Busch fastest in first XFINITY practice: #54-Kyle Busch was fastest during opening practice at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with a speed of 178.717mph. #33-Paul Menard was second, followed by: #20-Erik Jones, #42-Kyle Larson, #22-Ryan Blaney, #18-Daniel Suarez, #98-Aric Almirola, #62-Brendan Gaughan, #2-Brian Scott, and #7-Regan Smith. 37 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Indianapolis practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(7-24-2014)
  • Barrett in the #15 at Indianapolis: Just finishing his latest motion picture, Hollywood stuntman Stanton Barrett carries the adrenaline to Indianapolis Motor Speedway, site of Saturday afternoon’s NASCAR XFINITY Series Lilly Diabetes 250.Barrett has teamed up with Rick Ware Racing to compete in his third XFINITY Series race of the season. Earlier this year, Barrett competed in events at Auto Club Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway respectively. Craving for his passion and love for NASCAR racing, Barrett would have to take a short sabbatical from the race track for a life on the road doing the other career he’s very well known for, a star-studded profession in Hollywood. This weekend though, Barrett makes a grand return to NASCAR with his newest Hollywood credential completed. Barrett will utilize the 18th race of the season to promote the upcoming movie Navy Seals vs. Zombies which embarks his directorial debut. Coming in fall 2015, Navy Seals vs. Zombies released by Anchor Bay Entertainment is an action horror film starring Michael Dudikoff, Rick Fox, Ed Quinn and Lolo Jones. The film also features actual Navy Seals utilizing realistic tactics.(Barrett PR)(7-24-2015)
  • Military discount available for Darlington NXS race: Darlington Raceway, the Veterans of Foreign Wars Foundation and Sport Clips Haircuts are partnering to raise funds for the VFW’s Help A Hero Scholarship Program. Effective immediately thru August 28, the track is offering active duty, retired and veterans a special 50 percent off admission to the NASCAR XFINITY Series VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200 race on Sept. 5 at Darlington Raceway. Special tickets are available by visiting www.DarlingtonRaceway.com/HelpAHero or by calling 866-459-7223. Verification of military service will be vetted through SheerID. In turn, Darlington Raceway will donate $2 for each ticket purchased through the program to the VFW’s ‘Sport Clips Help A Hero Scholarship’ program. The VFW Foundation and Sport Clips have been entitlement partners of Darlington’s VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200 race since 2012.(Darlington Raceway)(7-24-2015)


    News from July 23, 2015


  • Penske to be inducted in Automotive Hall of Fame: From buying, restoring and selling old cars as a teenager, Birmingham’s Roger Penske has come far along the road of success. Over the past 50 years, Penske has built a motor sports and business empire around the globe, with powerful Indy Car and NASCAR teams representing his motor sports interests while his auto-related, transportation and heavy-duty machinery companies continue to expand worldwide. Thursday night in Detroit, Penske, 78, founder and chairman of Penske Corp., will be inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame, located in Dearborn, for his contributions to the global automotive industry. He will be inducted in a ceremony at the Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center with pioneer test driver and early automobile manufacturer Elwood Haynes (Haynes-Apperson Automobile Co., 1898-1925), former Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo and Ratan N. Tata, who returned Jaguar and Range Rover to eminent status and profitability in the United Kingdom. Penske entered a team in the 1969 Indianapolis 500 and won the race with Mark Donohue in 1972. Over the years, the cream of the crop raced at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the man known in racing and business circles as “The Captain.” Since his first victory at Indy, Penske has captured 15 more, with Team Penske’s Juan Pablo Montoya providing Roger his latest Borg-Warner Trophy in May. In NASCAR, Penske drivers have been at the top since the early ’70s, with the likes of Bobby Allison, Rusty Wallace, Jeremy Mayfield, Ryan Newman, Kurt Busch, Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano winning races at the top level for him. In 2012, Rochester Hills’ Keselowski gave Penske his first Sprint Cup championship.(Detroit Free Press)(7-23-2015)

  • MWR to Chevy? Ragan to return? What about Vickers? What in the world will Toyota Racing’s Sprint Cup program look like next year? One persistent, hot rumor features a manufacturer swap of sorts, with Rob Kauffman, currently the principal owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, taking his racing interests and partnering with a Chevy team. Furniture Row Racing is currently eyeing the Toyota camp with an ardor that has progressed well beyond flirtation.
    Two potential partnerships mentioned for Kauffman are Chip Ganassi Racing and Richard Childress Racing. Ganassi absorbed Dale Earnhardt Inc. and Martin Truex Jr. into the fold back in 2009. RCR expressed interest in acquiring a minority partner after Chartwell Investments expressed a desire to sell its stake in the company in 2012. Kauffman did not offer a definitive reply when asked about a possible realignment.
    Furniture Row’s Barney Visser has been more forthcoming. The Denver, Colorado-based team owner hopes to make a manufacturer decision in the next few weeks to accommodate a possible restructuring with Toyota for next year.
    Although FRR currently receives no financial support from Chevrolet, the team’s move could open the door for Kauffman to enter into a technical alliance with RCR, with whom the #78 currently shares data. However, sources told Motorsport.com that Ganassi appears to be the frontrunner for Kauffman’s capital at this time.
    Michael Waltrip Racing’s driver lineup likely hinges on Aaron’s continued support with the #55 team. Both Kauffman and Clint Bowyer, who is in the first year of a three-year contract, are high on driver David Ragan. Aaron’s has been a sponsor of Michael Waltrip’s since 2000 but has yet to renew with MWR. A decision on the company’s involvement could come in the next six to eight weeks.
    Last week Brian Vickers expressed interest in returning to racing. Given the unpredictability of Vickers situation, Kauffman isn’t sure whether they could accommodate the driver. “…The most important thing right now is his health. I haven’t really had a conversation with him regarding coming back to racing and the like. It’s a big medical issue that I haven’t been involved with up until now.,” Kauffman said. “He loves racing, so I’m sure he does (want to return), but I think it would be a challenge to try and figure something out–but I would never say never.”(Motorsport)(7-23-2015)

  • Rule package specifics for Indy: At Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend, NASCAR will debut its second track-specific rule package of the season. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series package planned for Indianapolis includes a 43-inch radiator pan (increased from 38 inches), a two-inch splitter leading edge, a one-inch wicker bill and nine-inch spoiler (increased from six inches). The increased downforce adds drag to the car and creates a larger draft window in the back.
    For Indianapolis, teams will be allowed to change their engines prior to qualifying and data will be permitted at practice. A single gear will be used, but teams will bring four different gears. NASCAR will determine which gear is needed after practice. Teams will start on a 3.70 gear.
    The Indianapolis rule package differs from the first track-specific rule package used this season at Kentucky which created lower downforce. The modifications helped produce a track-record 22 green-flag passes for the lead and a total of 2,665 green-flag passes overall.(NASCAR)(7-23-2015)

  • Chase clinch scenarios for Indianapolis: Only seven races remain before the 16-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field is set. Here’s what we know:
    #4-Kevin Harvick, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #48-Jimmie Johnson have fulfilled two of the three Chase criteria. All three have the multiple wins that guarantee a spot among the top 16 winners, and have locked up a top 30 spot. All they need to do now is start each of the remaining races in the regular season.
    A few drivers can join them this weekend. If #41-Kurt Busch leaves Indy with a 289 point lead over 31st, he will lock up a top 30 spot. #22-Joey Logano, #78-Martin Truex Jr., #2-Brad Keselowski, #20-Matt Kenseth and #11-Denny Hamlin all need to win, and in some cases get some help to lock up a top 30 spot (leaving Indy with a 289 point lead over 31st).(NASCAR)(7-23-2015)

  • FFA & CSX on the #38 at the Brickyard: Before a single engine starts, the Brickyard 400 will make history once again this year as the #38 FFA + CSX Living to Serve Ford becomes the first car to represent the 87-year-old, Indianapolis-based agricultural education and youth service organization, the largest of its kind with more than 610,240 student members interested in agriculture, as a primary sponsor in a NASCAR race. The #38 Ford will feature a blue, gold and white paint scheme with the familiar FFA emblem on the hood. CSX, the nation’s third largest railroad, is one of six Platinum Sponsors for the National FFA Foundation, having contributed more than $1 million annually since 2011. Both of the organizations make citizenship and community service top priorities with their shared “Living to Serve” partnership, which is supported by the CSX “Beyond Our Rails” program. In 2014, more than $1.77 million in time was invested as part of Living to Serve and nearly 50,000 community members were served by 84 chapters in 34 states. The two organizations work together on a number of initiatives to improve leadership, development, service-learning and environmental stewardship. CSX will also be the primary sponsor of the #34 Play It Safe Ford driven by Brett Moffitt. FFA will assist in promoting the importance of using caution around railroad tracks to their teen audience, a key demographic in railroad safety education.(Front Row Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #38 team paint schemes page.(7-23-2015)

  • Special look for the #21 at Indianapolis: The famous Motorcraft/Quick Lane Racing Ford Fusion will have a decidedly different look when it takes to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend for the Crown Royal 400 at the Brickyard. The #21 will feature a paint scheme designed by 8-year-old Maryn Winters of Basehor, Kan. Winters, who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (T1D) at age 4, is the winner of the 2015 Race Car Design Contest for JDRF, hosted by Motorcraft and Quick Lane. As a result, her design will be on the Wood Brothers’ Ford at Indianapolis and she and her parents will be in attendance to watch. Maryn’s colorful design – which features children holding balloons that spell out “HOPE” and “JDRF,” a rainbow and flowers – was selected from 10 finalists by the Ford Customer Service Division, JDRF and Wood Brothers Racing.(Wood Brothers Racing), see an image of the car on the #21 team paint schemes page.(7-23-2015)

  • Switch Hitch debuts on the #46 at Indy: Michael Annett’s #46 Chevy will be adorned by Switch Hitch. Invented by Terry Brinkley after he experienced problems with traditional hitch balls, Switch Hitch is a tri-ball hitch system designed to quickly switch from one ball to another through a patented switching and locking mechanism. Annett made two career starts at IMS in NASCAR Xfinity Series competition, finishing inside the top 10 in both – in 2012, he scored a sixth-place finish, winning the $100,000 Dash for Cash bonus.(HScott Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #46 team paint schemes page.(7-23-2015)

  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway Track Notes & History – Thursday:
    · Indianapolis Motor Speedway has existed since 1909, and is the original “Speedway,” the first racing facility to incorporate the word into its name.
    · With a permanent seating capacity for more than 250,000-plus people and infield seating that raises capacity to an approximate 400,000, it is the largest and highest-capacity sporting facility in history.
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway was August 6, 1994 – won by Jeff Gordon.
    (NASCAR)(7-22-2015)
  • Bowman in the #25 at Indy: Athenian Motorsports announced that Alex Bowman will drive the # 25 Zaxby’s Chevy in Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race in Indianapolis. John Wes Townley, who was slated to drive the car at Indy, continues to nurse a non-racing related injury.The injury was aggravated during the running of Wednesday night’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Eldora Speedway. He was treated and released from the infield care center following the event at Eldora. Fifth in driver points in the Truck Series, Townley plans on resting and being prepared for that circuit’s next race in Pocono, Pa. on Saturday Aug. 1st.(Athenian Motorsport)(7-23-2015)
  • Bell uncertain if he will run more truck races: The cool factor was on display from start to finish Wednesday night at Eldora Speedway. The half-mile dirt track, owned by three-time Sprint Cup champion Tony Stewart, plays host to the only dirt race in NASCAR’s three national series. It evens the playing field — no one talks much about “aero” — and with the dirt surface naturally changing daily and even throughout the night, it nearly guarantees the unpredictable. Take this unpredictability as an example: Christopher Bell had no idea he would be in this race two weeks ago, but when Justin Boston and Kyle Busch Motorsports parted ways, Bell got the nod for the July 9 race at Kentucky and he parlayed it into the start Wednesday night in the 1-800-Car-Cash Mud Summer Classic. Bell has no idea if he will race the truck again this year. He has made a name for himself in sprint cars, and he had hoped Saturday night to capture the Kings Royal, one of the biggest sprint-car races of the season.(ESPN.com)(7-23-2015)
  • Crafton, Dillon heated after Eldora: The chaos of the green-white-checkered that marked the ending of the Mudsummer Classic on Wednesday night at Eldora Speedway also resulted in a confrontation between Ty Dillon and Matt Crafton in the immediate aftermath of the event. Dillon was ahead of Crafton on the final restart and made an aggressive move to clear Dillon that ended with slight contact between the two. Following the move, Crafton claimed that Dillon attempted to wreck him, a move that infuriated the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship leader. Following the conversation, Crafton said the heightened emotions were just a byproduct of dirt track racing. Both Crafton and Dillon didn’t want to discuss the confrontation in detail and it is unclear when the drivers will be on the same track at the same time as they compete in two different divisions. For his part, Dillon said he was more upset at torn up equipment and a possible top five squandered. Crafton and Dillon went on to finish in ninth and 10th respectively.(Popular Speed)(7-23-2015)
  • Forrister chooses own truck design without sponsor UPDATE: Korbin Forrister, a 22-year-old race car driver from Georgia, has developed an interest in politics the past couple of years. At the Camping World Truck Series race Wednesday night at Eldora Speedway, he will combine those two passions. Forrister, who didn’t have a sponsor for the race, decided to decal the SS Green Light Racing #08 truck with “Trump For President” — the first but likely not the last time NASCAR drivers will carry messaging for candidates in the 2016 presidential election. Donald Trump’s presidential campaign is not paying for nor does it have any connection to the truck for the race, which is notorious as the only dirt-track race in NASCAR’s three national series. Forrister, who typically has Tilted Kilt logos on his truck, is competing in his first full truck season and sits 15th in the standings with a best of 12th this year in the 2015 season opener at Daytona. All paint schemes must be submitted and approved by NASCAR, which typically allows political ads on race vehicles. One twist the Trump truck faces is that the series and the race — the 1-800-CarCash Mudsummer Classic — are sponsored by companies owned by Marcus Lemonis, who recently wrote to NASCAR saying he would not participate in the series awards banquet if it remained at the Trump National Doral in Miami. NASCAR announced a couple of weeks ago that it would not have its banquet at the Trump-owned resort after Trump made controversial remarks regarding immigrants when he announced he was running for president. Truck sponsorships generally vary widely depending on teams — they can range anywhere from $15,000 to $150,000 a race.(ESPN.com)(7-23-2015)
    UPDATE: Forrister added on his Twitter account,”Going to run the #trumpforpresident scheme as long as I can, no funds.”(7-23-2015)


    News from July 22, 2015


  • Five teams given warnings after New Hampshire: NASCAR issued written warnings to five teams this week for multiple inspection failures last weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. The cars of #27-Paul Menard, #15-Clint Bowyer, #11-Denny Hamlin and #32-Eddie MacDonald were warned for failing prequalifying inspection twice. #21-Ryan Blaney’s team was warned for failing prerace inspection twice. The Sprint Cup Rule Book states in section 12.5.3.1.c that if the same team receives two warnings during two consecutive events – whether a points event or not – then the team faces a P1 penalty that could include one or more of the following: Deduction of practice time, deduction of qualifying time, last choice in selecting pits, delay in order of inspection and/or other penalties.(NBC Sports)(7-22-2015)

  • Chase Elliott returns to #25 for 4th race: In 2016, Chase Elliott will take over the iconic #24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet SS currently driven by Jeff Gordon. Gordon won the inaugural Brickyard 400 in 1994, two days after his 23rd birthday. Elliott, who was born one year, three months and 22 days after Gordon’s historic achievement, will make his Brickyard 400 debut this Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway at the age of 19 in the #25 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevy SS for Hendrick Motorsports. It will mark Elliott’s fourth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points race for the organization, after competing at Martinsville Speedway, Richmond International Raceway and Charlotte Motor Speedway earlier in the season. Last year, Elliott started fifth and finished 12th in his first career outing at Indianapolis during the NASCAR XFINITY Series race. NAPA AUTO PARTS will serve as Elliott’s primary sponsor on the #25 Chevy SS Sunday at The Brickyard, marking its second-to-last race on the car in 2015. Its finale will come on Sunday, Sept. 6, at Darlington Raceway during the Southern 500, before returning in 2016 as a primary sponsor of the #24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet SS in Elliott’s rookie Sprint Cup season.(Hendrick Motorsports)(7-22-2015)

  • Keselowski, Logano to appear in newest “Sharknado” UPDATE: A third Sharknado movie is releasing in July on Syfy, and NASCAR drivers #2-Brad Keselowski and #22-Joey Logano will be a part of the film. Keselowski watches a mammoth shark fall from the sky in the trailer, which was released Wednesday. The huge cast also includes David Hasselhoff, Jerry Springer, Michelle Beadle, Max Kellerman, Ryan Kerrigan and Chris Jericho. No one is safe, including Abraham Lincoln.(USA Today)(6-5-2015)
    UPDATE: Sharknado 3 debuts Wednesday night at 9:00pm/et on the SyFy network.(7-22-2015)
  • Indianapolis Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series will run the same tire codes at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this week . . . these teams have run this right-side tire code (D-4476) at IMS since 2012 . . . this is a brand new left-side tire code (D-4650) . . . compared to what was run at Indianapolis last year, this left-side features compound and construction changes that will give the cars more grip . . . this tire set-up came out of a Goodyear test at The Brickyard on April 27-28 . . . drivers taking part part in that test were Jeff Gordon, Sam Hornish, Martin Truex Jr., and J.J. Yeley . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams will run inner liners in all four tire positions at Indianapolis . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.(Goodyear), see full notes, tire codes, tire pressures, set limits and more on the Indianapolis Race Info page – Goodyear section.
  • Indianapolis is next Dash 4 Cash race: Four talented championship contending drivers will race to win a $100,000 bonus this weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, in the second round of the NASCAR XFINITY Series Dash 4 Cash program. #60-Chris Buescher,#7-Regan Smith, #62-Brendan Gaughan and #9-Chase Elliott will compete for the added cash bonus at Indianapolis in the Lilly Diabetes 250. The top finisher among the four will win the bonus. Of the four, Regan Smith has had the most success in the Dash 4 Cash program, having already won two rounds in his career – earlier this season at Dover and last season at New Hampshire. Series standings leader Chris Buescher and 2014 series champion Chase Elliott have been on another level performance-wise this season and both finished in the top-12 in their series debuts at IMS last season. Gaughan has an average finish of 14.4 through the first 17 races this season. Gaughan has especially run strong the last eight races, finishing in the top-10 four times. He has run two races at Indy, a 35th-place finish in the 2004 NASCAR Sprint Cup event and a 19th in last year’s XFINITY Series race. The top finisher of the four at Indianapolis, plus the highest finishing three NASCAR XFINITY Series championship contending drivers in the Lilly Diabetes 250 will qualify for the third round of the Dash 4 Cash program at Bristol Motor Speedway and a chance at another $100,000 cash bonus. (NASCAR(7-22-2015)
  • New Hampshire TV Ratings: NASCAR Xfinity Series racing from New Hampshire drew 1.3 million viewers on NBCSN Saturday afternoon, down 1% from last year on ESPN2 (1.35M to 1.33M) and down 36% from 2013 on broadcast network ABC (2.1M). Of the eighteen Xfinity Series telecasts this year, it ranks 12th in viewership(Sports Media Watch)(7-22-2015)
  • Bell wins at Eldora: #54-Christopher Bell won the 1800CarCash Mudsummer Classic at Eldora Speedway after holding off #63-Bobby Pierce following a green-white-checkered flag finish. The win was the first for Bell in only his third series start. #63-Pierce finished second, followed by: #19-Tyler Reddick, #4-Erik Jones, #14-Daniel Hemric, #31-Austin Dillon, #8-John Hunter Nemechek, #13-Cameron Hayley, #88-Matt Crafton, and #33-Ty Dillon.
    There were 13 cautions for 61 laps and 9 lead changes among 4 leaders. Complete results are on the Eldora race results page (pdf).(7-22-2015)
  • Eldora Race Fast Facts:
    Christopher Bell won the 3rd Annual 1-800-Car-Cash Mud Summer Classic, his first victory in three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
    This is his first victory and second top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish at Eldora Speedway.
    Bobby Pierce (second) posted his first top-10 finish at Eldora Speedway. It is his first top-10 finish in 2015.
    Tyler Reddick (third) posted his first top-10 finish in two races at Eldora Speedway.
    Erik Jones (fourth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Matt Crafton leads the point standings by 14 points over Tyler Reddick.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(7-22-2015)
  • Driver standings following Eldora:
    1) #88-Matt Crafton, 452
    2) #19-Tyler Reddick, 438, -14
    3) #4-Erik Jones #, 428, -24
    4) #98-Johnny Sauter, 381, -71
    5) #05-John Wes Townley, 360, -92
    6) #13-Cameron Hayley, 351, -101
    7) #14-Daniel Hemric #, 347, -105
    8) #17-Timothy Peters, 343, -109
    9) #23-Spencer Gallagher #, 335, -117
    10) #11-Ben Kennedy, 329, 123
    See complete standings on the driver standings page (pdf).(7-22-2015)
  • Owner Standings following Eldora: are posted (pdf).(7-22-2015)
  • Pierce, Nemechek, Schrader, Bell, Reddick win heats: #63-Bobby Pierce, #8-John Hunter Nemechek, #52-Ken Schrader, #54-Christopher Bell, #19-Tyler Reddick won the heat races, securing top-five starting spots. #35-Cody Erickson won the last chance race. Failed to qualify: #03-Jake Griffin. The #80 did not start the last chance race.See the starting lineup on the Starting lineup page(pdf)(7-22-2015)

    (7-22-2015)

  • Last Chance Results (pdf)
  • Heat Five Results (pdf)
  • Heat Four Results (pdf)
  • Heat Three Results (pdf)
  • Heat Two Results (pdf)
  • Heat One Results (pdf)
  • Pierce on pole for the Mudsummer Classic at Eldora: #63-Bobby Pierce earned the pole for the 1800CarCash Mudsummer Classic at Eldora Speedway on Wednesday, running a fast lap at 86.889mph. Eldora is Pierce’s first truck race. #98-Johnny Sauter, #07-Ray Black, Jr., #13-Cameron Hayley, #05-John Wes Townley, #02-Tyler Young, #88-Matt Crafton, #1-Travis Kvapil, #54-Christopher Bell, #19-Tyler Reddick complete the top-10. Five qualifying races and a last chance race will determine the starting lineup. See complete results on the Qualifying results (pdf) page.(7-22-2015)
  • Eldora Qualifying Notes:
    Bobby Pierce won the Keystone Light 21 means 21 Pole Award for the 3rd Annual 1-800-Car-Cash Mud Summer Classic with a lap of 20.716 seconds, 86.889 mph.
    This is his first pole in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
    Pierce is the fifth driver in series history to win the pole in his series debut and the sixth to start from the first starting position in his series debut.
    This is his first pole in at Eldora Speedway.
    Johnny Sauter (second) posted his sixth top-10 start of 2015 and his second in three races at Eldora Speedway.
    Ray Black Jr. (third) posted his first top-10 start at Eldora Speedway. It is his second in 11 races this season.
    Ray Black Jr. (third) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-22-2015)
  • Reddick fastest in final practice: #19-Tyler Reddick was fastest in final practice at Eldora Speedway with a speed of 89.264mph. He was followed by #33-Ty Dillon, #17-Timothy Peters, #63-Bobby Pierce, #54-Christopher Bell, #98-Johnny Sauter, #31-Austin Dillon, #03-Jake Griffin, #88-Matt Crafton, and #00-Cole Custer. 34 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Eldora practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(7-22-2015)
  • Jones fastest in practice: #4-Erik Jones was fastest during the opening practice at Eldora Speedway with a speed of 89.454mph. #31-Austin Dillon was second, followed by #63-Bobby Pierce, #54-Christopher Bell, #88-Matt Crafton, #50-Jody Knowles, #33-Ty Dillon, #03-Jake Griffin, #15-Chad Boat, and #51-Matt Tifft. 32 of the entered 34 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Eldora practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(7-22-2015)
  • Parmalee and Kongos headline Keloorah at Michigan: NASCAR race fans and music festival fans both will have reasons to celebrate in August at Michigan International Speedway. Keloorah, a music festival experience, will take place on Friday and Saturday of the August Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup weekend at MIS. Seven music acts, spanning country and alternative rock, along with EDM deejays will perform at Keloorah. Keloorah kicks off on Aug. 14 with alternative rock. The sounds of the Kongos, Big Data and Saints of Valory will entertain the crowd into the night. Country music takes the stage on Aug. 15 with Parmalee, Logan Mize, Dylan Scott and Tim Dugger. But that’s not all. Besides the live shows, deejays will headline the Budweiser Stage and will host foam and paint parties. Also, there are go-karts, video game arcade, an outdoor sports bar, tailgate games, – all within the NASCAR event weekend and on MIS property. Keloorah is behind Turn 3, central to many of MIS’ MISCamping.com campgrounds. But shuttles will run from campgrounds to the party. A Sunday admission ticket or infield or APEX wristband that allows access to the Pure Michigan 400 will gain access to Keloorah on Friday and Saturday.(Michigan Speedway)(7-22-2015)


    News from July 21, 2015


  • Marsh Supermarkets sponsoring Bowman: Tommy Baldwin Racing welcomes Marsh Supermarkets aboard the #7 Chevy for the upcoming Crown Royal Presents Jeff Kyle 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Founded in 1931, Marsh’s company was founded on and continues to thrive on the sincere philosophy of being a strong part of their community. Being a sponsor in the 2015 Brickyard 400, the home track for the company, continues this legacy. “We are proud to welcome Marsh as a partner of Tommy Baldwin Racing,” said team owner Tommy Baldwin. “As a company rooted in Indianapolis, having them well represented in the Brickyard 400 means a lot to them and us as a team.” Headquartered in Indianapolis, Marsh operates 73 Marsh Supermarkets and 2 O’Malia’s Food Markets in Indiana and Ohio.(Tommy Baldwin Racing), see an image of the car on the #7 team paint schemes page.(7-21-2015)

  • NASCAR will address throwing of water bottles: A NASCAR executive said Monday that officials will address the issue of throwing water bottles out of the car with drivers after a water bottle was spotted on the apron during a debris caution in Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Another water bottle was spotted on the apron during a caution for Paul Menard later in the race. Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio’s “The Morning Drive” that it’s not uncommon for drivers to discard water bottles during a race. “Coming off pit road sometimes you see it down on the apron where some water bottles are discarded,” he said. “I think in this case, we candidly weren’t really sure and knew it was potentially one of the drivers’ ones that are a little bit different with the material they’re made out of. If someone is purposely trying to manipulate a caution, that’s not something that is going to be tolerated, and we’ll have to look into that further as we go and we’ll address that with the teams also.”(NBCSports)(7-21-2015)

  • New Hampshire TV Ratings: After holding even the previous week, overnight ratings for NASCAR fell by double-digits over the weekend. NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from New Hampshire drew a 2.3 overnight rating on NBCSN Sunday afternoon, down 12% from last year (2.6) and down 23% from 2013 (3.0), both on TNT. The 2.3 is tied for third out of the eight races on cable this year, matching Dover and Pocono but trailing Sonoma (2.4) and Martinsville (2.5). Overnights have now dropped for seven of the eight races on cable, with the previous week’s race from Kentucky the lone exception (even). Despite the decline, the race ranked second for the weekend among all sporting events. Only Sunday’s British Open coverage on ESPN drew a higher overnight (2.6).(Sports Media Watch), see race-by-race ratings, 5-year comparsion chart and more on the 2015 TV Ratings page.(7-21-2015)

  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Indianapolis:
    #48-Jimmie Johnson 108.1
    #24-Jeff Gordon 105.6
    #42-Kyle Larson 104.4
    #14-Tony Stewart 101.9
    #5-Kasey Kahne 100.1
    #18-Kyle Busch 98.5
    #20-Matt Kenseth 96.6
    #4-Kevin Harvick 92.7
    #16-Greg Biffle 92.3
    #11-Denny Hamlin 90.6
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2004-2014 races (10 total) among active drivers at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)
  • Sad News – Frances Brewer: Mrs. Frances Weaver Brewer, 93, of Winston-Salem, passed away Tuesday, July 21, 2015 at the Regency Care of Clemmons. She was born June 7, 1922 in Forsyth County to Esther Allred Weaver and Carlton Vaughn Weaver. Mrs. Brewer was a member of Trinity Moravian Church and retired from Duplan Corporation and Key Auto Parts. She was preceded in death by her husband, Elmo Leroy Brewer; one sister, Margaret Burns and two brothers, Roy and Allie Weaver. Surviving are one daughter, Susan Brewer (Tim)[former NASCAR crew chief and current TV analyst]; three sons, Larry Brewer (Judy), Tommy Brewer (Linda) and Harold Brewer (Lucy); five grandchildren, Christy, Scott, Pam, Lisa and Randy; four great grandchildren, Matthew, Jamie, Brittany and Sloan and numerous nieces and nephews. A funeral service will be held at 11:00am Thursday, July 23, 2015 at Hayworth-Miller Silas Creek Chapel with Pastor John Jackman officiating. Interment will follow in Salem Moravian Graveyard. The family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home. Services are under the direction of Hayworth-Miller Funeral Home.(7-21-2015)
  • Almirola in the #98 at Indianapolis: Aric Almirola will run the NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend for Biagi DenBeste Racing and their new partner, Sledgehammer, a brand of Treasury Wine Estates. He will compete in his first XFINITY race at Indianapolis when he pilots the #98 Ford at the famed 2.5-mile track. Almirola has seven starts this season with Biagi DenBeste Racing. He scored his best finish of seventh at Daytona in February. Despite not having any XFINITY starts at the track, he made three Sprint Cup Series starts since his track debut in 2012. Still knocking on the door of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Almirola will utilize extra track time to benefit the #43 Eckrich Ford team on Sunday for the Brickyard 400. Treasury Wine Estates is a unique global wine company with a rich heritage and leading international portfolio of new world wines. Treasury Wine Estates includes world most recognized and awarded wine brands. Launched in spring 2010, Sledgehammer, a brand of Treasury Wine Estates, produces big, bold red wines. The inaugural releases Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel are made from grapes grown in California’s North coast wine growing region.(Richard Petty Motorsports)(7-21-2015)

  • XFINITY teams to use high-drag package at IMS UPDATE: The NASCAR XFINITY Series is scheduled to run a high-drag rules package this weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The new aerodynamic package was highlighted by Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer, in a Monday morning debrief. A NASCAR spokesperson confirmed the rules change will be in place for Saturday’s Lilly Diabetes 250. The rules package will mimic the setup to be used for the first time by the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Indianapolis in Sunday’s Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard. The changes are expected to reduce speeds and promote tighter racing on the 2.5-mile track, potentially creating a pack-style competition. “From our perspective, the high-drag package that’s going to be implemented in both the XFINITY and Cup Series, hopefully the ability of the cars to draft a little bit for that second or chased pack to be able to catch the leader,” O’Donnell said. “Again, it’s new. It’s a new package for Indianapolis so we’ll evaluate it as we did for Kentucky to see what we learned, what was good, what we can tweak going forward.” XFINITY cars have 75 less horsepower than Sprint Cup cars (650 in XFINITY to 725 in Cup), and O’Donnell explained how running it in both series will help the sanctioning body. “It’ll offer just something a little bit different,” O’Donnell said. “Obviously the XFINITY cars are somewhat underpowered compared to Cup so it’ll give us a look at how the power works with both of those packages, what are some of the gears that we used and what, if any, tweaks do we need to make coming out of Indianapolis. Just provide some different data for us for both series.”(NASCAR.com)(7-20-2015)
    UPDATE: NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series isn’t the only tour experimenting with a high drag package this weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway – the XFINITY Series will also integrate the modifications on that tour’s race cars this weekend. Most noticeably, the Mustangs, Camrys and Camaros will have an additional two inches across the top of the spoiler. Currently, there are two two-inch extensions at either end of the four-inch spoiler, but the new polycarbonate attachment will add two inches across the entire width of the piece. NASCAR made the spoilers available to the teams at the sanctioning body’s expense on July 16th. Teams will also use a three-inch “Superspeedway Style” extension on the rear bumper cover and start with a 3.70 gear in an effort to target 8,200 RPM for the race.(Motorsport)(7-22-2015)
  • Qualifying at Eldora: Qualifying for Wednesday night’s race at Eldora is unlike anything on the NASCAR national series calendar. There will be two laps of single truck qualifying to determine the Keystone Light Pole Award winner, as well as the starting positions for five 10-lap qualifying races. The top five trucks from each qualifying race transfer to the feature. After the five qualifying races, there will be a 15-lap Last Chance Qualifying Race. The top-two finishers in the Last Chance Race will transfer to the feature. Positions 28th-31st will go to the highest-ranking eligible trucks in owner points that have not already earned a starting position through qualifying. The 32nd starting position will go to the most recent eligible past series champion. If that position is not filled by an eligible champion, it will be assigned based upon owner points.(NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-21-2015)
  • Entry list: There are 32 trucks on the preliminary entry list for Wednesday’s 1-800-Car-Cash Mud Summer Classic. A few notes:
    Cole Custer is in the #00;
    Chad Boat is in the #15 in place of Mason Mingus;
    Brad Keselowski is in the #29;
    Austin Dillon is in the #31;
    Ty Dillon is in the #33;
    The #35 is TBA;
    Ken Schrader is in the #52;
    Bobby Pierce is in the #63;
    Madeline Crane is in the #80;
    (7-15-2015)
    UPDATE: Stew Hayward will drive the #74.(7-20-2015)
    UPDATE 2: Jake Griffin will drive the #03 in place of Affarano.(7-20-2015)
    UPDATE 3: Travis Kvapil added in the 1; Jody Knowles added in the 50; Cody Coughlin added in the 82;(7-20-2015)
    UPDATE 4: Sean Corr will drive the 82;(7-21-2015)
    See the complete list on the Eldora entry list page.
  • Corr making statement with Eldora debut: Sean Corr, owner/driver for Empire Racing Group, will be making his NCWTS debut at Eldora Speedway this Wednesday night on the greatest dirt track there is in dirt track racing. Sean comes from an extensive background in dirt track racing. He will be riding into Ohio’s Eldora Speedway with a message for a mayor back home. Corr’s race truck will feature a truck bed decal in support of Central Park’s horse carriage industry, which Mayor Bill de Blasio has pledged to ban. Sean will be behind the wheel of the #82 Empire Racing Group Ford NASCAR Camping World Truck. The trunk decal pictures a horsedrawn carriage and reads “New York Horsepower” and “Save NYC Horse Carriages”. Horse-drawn carriages have been a feature of Central Park since 1858, and are always a top destination for tourists. Featured in numerous classic films and television shows, the horses have become an iconic part of the city’s landscape. Mayor de Blasio pledged during the 2013 mayoral campaign to ban the industry, claiming that horses do not belong in today’s New York City. But New Yorkers have pushed back against the proposal, which would put 300 working families out of a job. Corr is no stranger to horses. He grew up in Goshen, NY, where his mother owns a horse farm. As a child, he took carriage rides in Central Park, and recalls that the carriage horses were “the best part of the city.” When he heard about plans to ban the horses from New York City, he reached out through the New York State Horse Council to offer his support.(Empire Racing)(7-21-2015)
  • Pace truck driver, Anthem performers announced for Eldora: Ronnie Mund, also known as “Ronnie the Limo Driver” from “The Howard Stern Show” on SiriusXM, has been selected to drive the Chevrolet Silverado pace truck for the 1-800-Car-Cash Mud Summer Classic NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race Wednesday night at Eldora Speedway. Mund has worked with Stern since 1985. He will work with Stern on Wednesday morning and then fly to Ohio for the race. The 150-lap Truck Series race is contested in 60-50-40 lap segments. As is dirt-track tradition, the starting field is set by five qualifying heat races. For the third straight year, the American Legion Post 648 Honor Guard from St. Henry, Ohio , will present the colors of the United States and the St. Henry (Ohio) High School marching band will perform the National Anthem.(Eldora Speedway)(7-21-2015)
  • Pocono race to be the Windows 10 400: Pocono Raceway and Microsoft announced the renaming of the annual August NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race held at “The Tricky Triangle” as the Windows 10 400. The Windows 10 400 race weekend will take place from July 31st to August 2nd, just two days after the launch of Windows 10. For the first time ever, Microsoft’s popular operating system will be offered as a free upgrade* to customers with qualified Windows 7 and Windows 8 devices. Microsoft, an Official Technology Partner of NASCAR, will have device displays and interactive experiences in the Fan Fair and Paddock areas at Pocono Raceway during the Windows 10 400 race weekend. Race fans and members of the NASCAR industry will be able to relax and enjoy Windows 10 devices at these locations. Additionally, everyone is invited to interact on their social media channels using the official race hashtag, #Windows10_400. Additionally, Hendrick Motorsports driver Dale Earnhardt Jr., the defending winner of the August NSCS race at Pocono Raceway, will drive the #88 Microsoft Chevy SS during the Windows 10 400 race weekend.(Pocono Raceway)(7-21-2015)
  • Pickler to sing National Anthem at Indianapolis: Country music sensation Kellie Pickler will sing the national anthem during pre-race ceremonies at the 22nd annual Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Sunday, July 26, at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. After first gaining fame as a 19-year-old contestant on the fifth season of “American Idol,” Pickler has gone on to achieve tremendous success as a country music performer, recording artist and songwriter. In 2006, Pickler signed with 19 Recordings/BNA Records and released her debut album, Small Town Girl, which has gone on to sell more than 900,000 copies worldwide and produced three hit singles: “Red High Heels,” “I Wonder” and “Things That Never Cross a Man’s Mind.” She followed that in 2008 with her self-titled sophomore record, featuring country radio hits “Don’t You Know You’re Beautiful,” “Best Days of Your Life” (co-written with Taylor Swift and her first Top 10) and “Didn’t You Know How Much I Loved You.” Pickler is also an avid supporter of the U.S. military, having recently completed her eighth USO Tour in December 2014.(IMS)(7-21-2015)


    News from July 20, 2015


  • Toyota talking to additional teams: David Wilson, president of Toyota Racing Development, told NASCAR Talk on Sunday that the manufacturer does not have any deals with additional teams for next season but is “talking to a couple of teams.” #78-Furniture Row Racing team owner Barney Visser has expressed interest in switching manufacturers after this season. “We’d definitely be open to (adding Furniture Row),” Wilson said before Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. “I’d said consistently, particularly with this new Chase format, we could use a couple more quality cars. It’s not about numbers. We’ve got to have quality. We could expand as early as next year if the circumstances present themselves.” Wilson said Toyota likely would need to decide by mid-September if it wanted to add a team for next season but added the manufacturer also was considering deals that would begin in 2017. “Because (every team) is structured differently, some of it is looking out at 2017,” he said. “The challenge (is) we have this stable of young drivers, and we need to make sure we can keep Toyotas underneath them. It’s not good enough to look at just one year out. You need to look at three to five years out and try to position yourself as best you can.”(NBC Sports)(7-20-2015)

  • Johnson working on contract extension: Just weeks before NASCAR’s “silly season” of accelerated contract negotiation and frenzied driver movement speculation, six-time Sprint Cup champion #48-Jimmie Johnson remains without an extension to remain at Hendrick Motorsports. But that sounds like just a formality. Before the 5-hour Energy 301 on Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Johnson told USA TODAY Sports that while there was “nothing new” in completing negotiations, he doesn’t foresee a move from the team with which he has raced his entire 15-year Sprint Cup career. “(Team owner) Rick (Hendrick) likes to get things signed up and done well in advance, so there definitely have been conversations,” Johnson said. “We’re kind of going down the road to get that all buttoned up and put together. But I’m home. I’m not going anywhere.”(USA Today)(7-20-2015)

  • Chase clinch scenarios at New Hampshire UPDATE: Only eight races remain before the 16-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field is set. Here’s what we know:
    #4-Kevin Harvick has checked off two of the three Chase criteria boxes. He has the multiple wins that guarantees a spot among the top 16 winners, and at Kentucky, he locked up a top 30 spot. All he needs to do now is start each of the remaining races in the regular season.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. can join Harvick this weekend in New Hampshire. Both Hendrick Motorsports drivers already have the multiple wins that guarantee them a spot among the top 16 winners (even if there’s a new winner in each of the remaining eight races). They can lock up a top 30 spot at New Hampshire this weekend.
    #22-Joey Logano could also join Harvick, but only with a victory.
    With help in the form of poor finishes by drivers around the 30th place bubble, a victory for #78-Martin Truex Jr. or #2-Brad Keselowski would give either multiple wins and a possible top 30 place clinch.(NASCAR)(7-16-2015)
    UPDATE: Sunday at New Hampshire, two Hendrick Motorsports drivers essentially punched their tickets to the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Dale Earnhardt Jr. entered Sunday’s race needing 35 points to secure a spot in the top 30 of the point standings, the next step to officially earn a place in NASCAR’s postseason. He earned 39. Jimmie Johnson, meanwhile, needed 26 points to secure his top-30 spot — with no help. However, his performance netted 22 points. Still, with the way the race played out, those 22 points were enough to do the job. The driver of the #48 Lowe’s Chevy SS also clinched his top-30 spot. Since both Johnson and Earnhardt have multiple wins, positions in the 16-driver Chase field are all but assured. The only requirement left is to start the remaining seven races of the regular season.(Hendrick Motorsports)(7-20-2015)

  • Drivers treated after race: It was an incredibly and humid day at the Magic Mile with severe thunderstorms in the area. After 300 miles of racing, drivers were spent. Three drivers in particular needed medical attention – #47-A.J. Allmendinger, #46-Michael Annett and #83-Matt DiBenedetto. According to PRN, Allmendinger was suffering from strep throat and was treated after getting out of the car. “Great effort by @AJDinger today, tough race while not feeling well,” tweeted the team. Allmendinger finished 13th after leading 13 laps. Both Annett and DiBenedetto went to the infield care center after both were showing signs of heat exhaustion and were need of fluids. 29-year-old Annett went via a stretcher. Both have since been released.(Motorsport)(7-20-2015)
  • New Hampshire Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 5-Hour ENERGY 301: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday’s race. Began recording at the Invocation of the race at 1:20 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 4:34 PM. Did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. NBCSN was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 110
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 37
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 87
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 53
    Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 23
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 17
    Number of times NBCSN utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 4
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast (including company logos ‘floating’ in corners of the screen): 75
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 4 min. 20 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 1:20 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 4:34 PM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 194
    Minutes of race broadcast: 154
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 40
    Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 11
    Number of missed restarts: 0
    Number of ‘mystery cautions’ (debris not shown): 2
    Total race brdcst time 154 Total comm. brdcst time 40
    See full reports, sponsor links, much more details at CawsnJaws.com.(7-20-2015)

  • XFINITY teams to use high-drag package at IMS: The NASCAR XFINITY Series is scheduled to run a high-drag rules package this weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The new aerodynamic package was highlighted by Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer, in a Monday morning debrief. A NASCAR spokesperson confirmed the rules change will be in place for Saturday’s Lilly Diabetes 250. The rules package will mimic the setup to be used for the first time by the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Indianapolis in Sunday’s Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard. The changes are expected to reduce speeds and promote tighter racing on the 2.5-mile track, potentially creating a pack-style competition. “From our perspective, the high-drag package that’s going to be implemented in both the XFINITY and Cup Series, hopefully the ability of the cars to draft a little bit for that second or chased pack to be able to catch the leader,” O’Donnell said. “Again, it’s new. It’s a new package for Indianapolis so we’ll evaluate it as we did for Kentucky to see what we learned, what was good, what we can tweak going forward.” XFINITY cars have 75 less horsepower than Sprint Cup cars (650 in XFINITY to 725 in Cup), and O’Donnell explained how running it in both series will help the sanctioning body. “It’ll offer just something a little bit different,” O’Donnell said. “Obviously the XFINITY cars are somewhat underpowered compared to Cup so it’ll give us a look at how the power works with both of those packages, what are some of the gears that we used and what, if any, tweaks do we need to make coming out of Indianapolis. Just provide some different data for us for both series.”(NASCAR.com)(7-20-2015)
  • Entry list: There are 32 trucks on the preliminary entry list for Wednesday’s 1-800-Car-Cash Mud Summer Classic. A few notes:
    Cole Custer is in the #00;
    Chad Boat is in the #15 in place of Mason Mingus;
    Brad Keselowski is in the #29;
    Austin Dillon is in the #31;
    Ty Dillon is in the #33;
    The #35 is TBA;
    Ken Schrader is in the #52;
    Bobby Pierce is in the #63;
    Madeline Crane is in the #80;
    (7-15-2015)
    UPDATE: Stew Hayward will drive the #74.(7-20-2015)
    UPDATE 2: Jake Griffin will drive the #03 in place of Affarano.(7-20-2015)
    UPDATE 3: Travis Kvapil added in the 1; Jody Knowles added in the 50; Cody Coughlin added in the 82;(7-20-2015)
    See the complete list on the Eldora entry list page.
  • Crane joins Cobb as females in Eldora field: Madeline “Mad Maddie” Crane looks to become the 18th female driver to record a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start when she makes her NASCAR debut in Wednesday’s 1-800-CAR-CASH Mud Summer Classic at Eldora Speedway. The 17-year-old Georgia native races Super Late Models at Senoia (Ga.) Raceway where she ranks fourth in the points standings. Crane began her career when she was 10 years old racing Bandoleros in the Thursday Night Thunder Series at Atlanta Motor Speedway – a program that helped produce Joey Logano, David Ragan, Reed Sorensen, Chase Elliott and Ty Dillon. She participated in the NASCAR Drive 4 Diversity Combine at Langley Speedway last October.(NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-20-2015)
  • Different look for Young: Straying from their traditional white Chevy Silverado, Young’s Motorsports will debut new colors for the 1-800-CarCash Mudsummer Classic. Throwing it back to Young’s early days racing on dirt in Texas, the #02 will sport a paint scheme replicating the dirt late model Young raced before he reached the NASCAR ranks.(See an image of the truck on the #02 Team Paint Schemes Page)(Young’s Motorsports)(7-20-2015)
  • Griffin, Affarano partner for Eldora: Jake Griffin, youngest winner in NASCAR Touring Series history, is set to make his Eldora Speedway debut, as Affarano Motorsports has partnered with Jake Griffin Racing for the 1-800-Car Cash Mud Summer Classic. Griffin will be behind the wheel of the #03 ATI – Advance Trading, Inc. / Outdoor Power, Inc. Chevy Silverado.(Affarano Motorsports)(7-20-2015)


    News from July 19, 2015


  • Entry List for the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is posted, 46 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including: #21-Blaney, #25-Elliott, #32-Wise, #33-Scott, #62-Sorenson, #95-McDowell.
    Drivers who need to be in the top-36 in speed and have no provisional available to them (lowest in owners points): #26-Burton (44th), #62-Sorenson (45th), #25-Elliott (46th)
    Drivers who would miss the race if qualifying is canceled (least race attempts): #25-Elliott (3 attempts), #21-Blaney (9), #95-McDowell (11)
    See the full entry list at Jayski.com’s Indianapolis Entry List

  • Kyle Busch wins at New Hampshire: #18-Kyle Busch won the 5-hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway for his 3rd win of the season, 2nd win at New Hampshire, and 32nd career win. He has now won 3 of the last 4 races.
    #2-Keselowski finished 2nd followed by #4-Harvick, #22-Logano, #88-Earnhardt, Jr., #20-Kenseth, polesitter #19-Edwards, #3-Dillon, #24-Gordon, and #41-Busch.
    Harvick increases his driver’s points lead to 69 points over #22-Logano.
    Busch is now 33rd in the points standings and just 58 points out of 30th. He must be in the top 30 in points to be eligible for the Chase. He has gained 70 points on 30th in the last 2 weeks and now needs around a 19th place average finish to make the top 30 in the 7 remaining races before the Chase begins.
    There were 10 lead changes among 7 drivers. There were 7 cautions for 34 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 108.504mph.
    See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Penalty Report (pdf) and Lap Summary Report (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-19-2015)
  • Race Fast Facts – New Hampshire:
    Kyle Busch won the 23rd Annual 5-hour ENERGY 301, his 32nd victory in 373 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his third victory and fourth top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his second victory and 11th top-10 finish in 21 races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    Brad Keselowski (second) posted his eighth top-10 finish in 12 races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. It is his 11th top-10 finish in 2015.
    Kevin Harvick (third) posted his 15th top-10 finish in 29 races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    Brett Moffitt (33rd) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Kevin Harvick leads the point standings by 69 points over Joey Logano.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(7-19-2015)
  • 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup CHASE Standings:
    [after New Hampshire, race 19 of 36]
    (by wins, then by points standings)
    1) #48-Jimmie Johnson [4 wins], 646, -88 (4th in driver points)
    2) #4-Kevin Harvick [2 wins], 734 (1st)
    3) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [2 wins], 655, -79 (3rd)
    4) #41-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 576, -158 (8th)
    5) #22-Joey Logano [1 win], 665, -69 (2nd)
    6) #78-Martin Truex Jr. [1 win], 628, -106 (5th)
    7) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 603, -131 (6th)
    8) #20-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 578, -156 (7th)
    9) #11-Denny Hamlin [1 win], 552, -182 (11th)
    10) #19-Carl Edwards [1 win], 487, -247 (17th)
    [would be in the Chase via points standings]
    11) #1-Jamie McMurray, 574, -160 (9th in driver points)
    13) #24-Jeff Gordon, 573, -161 (10th)
    12) #5-Kasey Kahne, 538, -196 (12th)
    14) #31-Ryan Newman, 503, -204 (13th)
    15) #27-Paul Menard, 528, -206 (14th)
    15) #43-Aric Almirola, 502, -232 (15th)
    [has a win but not in the top 30 in drivers points to make Chase]
    33) #18-Kyle Busch [3 wins], 247, 58 pts out of 30th (needs to avg 19th place finish)
    (ties are broken by wins, 2nds, 3rds, etc)
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-19-2015)
  • Top-10 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Drivers Points Standings:
    [after New Hampshire, race 19 of 36]
    1) #4-Kevin Harvick [2 wins], 734
    2) #22-Joey Logano [1 win], 665, -69
    3) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [2 wins], 655, -79
    4) #48-Jimmie Johnson [4 wins], 646, -88
    5) #78-Martin Truex Jr. [1 win], 628, -106
    6) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 603, -131
    7) #20-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 578, -156
    8) #41-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 576, -158
    9) #1-Jamie McMurray, 574, -160
    10) #24-Jeff Gordon, 573, -161
    (ties are broken by wins, 2nds, 3rds, etc)
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-19-2015)
  • New Hampshire Rookie of the Year Race Results & Points:
    #34-Brett Moffitt, finished 33rd, 11 rookie points
    #83-Matt DiBenedetto, finished 35th, 10 rookie points
    #26-Jeb Burton, finished 41st, 9 rookie points
    #33-Alex Kennedy, did not race, not entered
    #66-Tanner Berryhill, did not race, not entered
    See the 2015 Rookie of the Year page for rules, standings and more.(7-19-2015)

  • NASCAR has not discussed tire changes for Chase races with Goodyear: The most intriguing wrinkle for the Chase may not be which championship contenders are in or out after each elimination round. It could be if NASCAR decides to use a package responsible for a race that drew nothing but rave reviews from the drivers. Goodyear has not been informed that the race package that was such a hit last week at Kentucky Speedway will be used for the 10 races that determine the Sprint Cup champion. Greg Stucker, Goodyear’s director of racing, said the manufacturer would need to know in about a week if NASCAR would proceed with a request for soft tires that are typically paired with a lower-downforce aerodynamic package. Stucker said Goodyear typically needed 90 days from the date of the decision to produce the appropriate tires needed for each race. The Chase for the Sprint Cup championship begins Sept. 20 at Chicagoland Speedway. “We haven’t had that serious conversation yet because that really hasn’t been proposed to us,” Stucker said Saturday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. “So we’d have to kind of sit down and see what our options might be.” Teams participated in a three-day test this week at Chicagoland that gave drivers feedback on both tires and aero packages. Stucker said the tires used for the Chase opener at Chicagoland also line up for championship races at Texas Motor Speedway and the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Stucker said Goodyear tested a softer tire with the lower-downforce package at Chicagoland. “Chicago caught us a little bit. We have to go back and look at that,” Stucker said. Stucker also said Goodyear will stick with the tires selected following a tire test in April at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for next weekend’s race at the Brickyard.(Associated Press)(7-19-2015)

  • Bowyer, Gordon make contact in garage at NH: #15-Clint Bowyer called it the “damnedest thing I’ve ever seen.” #24-Jeff Gordon didn’t disagree. Bowyer ran into the four-time Sprint Cup Series champion’s #24 Chevy as Gordon was backing out of his own garage stall here at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Saturday morning. Bowyer’s Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota sustained only minor damage to the front end and was eventually able to return to the track. Gordon’s car, meanwhile, required significant repairs to the right-rear quarter panel. The repairs were not completed by the end of the session. “There are so many people in here,” Bowyer said. “Hell, I glanced up … all that (equipment) was there; that guy backing him out, I think he glanced up for a second but when I got there he wasn’t even looking. There’s just so much going on (in the garage). It’s a wonder that stuff doesn’t happen more often.” A pit cart, used to ferry equipment from the team’s transporter to the garage stall, blocked the view of Gordon’s car as it rolled out of its stall. “The guy that backs me out looked over, I guess he was just starting to back me out … I crept out there and he cleared me, but the #15 (Bowyer), probably couldn’t really see me because of that pit cart,” Gordon said. “I don’t know if he kind of glanced away or what, but when he looked back, I was just right there and couldn’t go anywhere. It’s kind of a combination of, I guess, both of us could take fault in that.”(NASCAR.com)(7-19-2015)

  • New Hampshire Motor Speedway Race Notes & Facts – Sunday:
    · Five different manufacturers have won at New Hampshire; led by Chevrolet with 18 victories; followed by Ford (13), Toyota (four), Dodge (three) and Pontiac (two).
    · Hendrick Motorsports leads the series in wins at New Hampshire in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with nine; followed by Roush Fenway Racing (seven), Team Penske (six), Joe Gibbs Racing (six) and Richard Childress Racing (four).
    · Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory (MOV) in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at New Hampshire Motor Speedway was the July 1, 2007 race won by Denny Hamlin over Jeff Gordon with a MOV of 0.068 second.
    · 17 of the 33 (51.5%) NSCS races scored by electronic scoring at New Hampshire Motor Speedway have had a Margin of Victory less than a second.
    · Four of the 40 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races have resulted with a green-white-checkered finish at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (Scheduled No. of Laps/Actual No. of Laps): 2006 (300/308), 2013 (301/302), 2014 (301/302) and the Chase race 2014 (300/303).
    · Four of the 40 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at New Hampshire Motor Speedway have been shortened due to weather conditions; the most recent was June 28, 2009 – the race was called on Lap 273, 28 circuits shy of the 301 scheduled laps.
    (NASCAR)(7-19-2015)


    News from July 18, 2015


  • New Hampshire Sunday Pre-Race Schedule:
    — 11:30am: NSCS Driver/Crew Chief Meeting
    — 1:00pm: NSCS Drivers Introductions with NASCAR Special Awards
    — 1:15pm: Team Fastrax jumps with flag
    — 1:28pm: Canadian National Anthem by: Rene Rancourt
    — 1:30pm: Presentation of Colors by: Combined Services Color Guard
    — 1:30pm: Invocation by: Rico Petrocelli, Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame Shortstop
    — 1:31pm: National Anthem: Nicole Pelletier, Winner of Speedway Star Competition
    — 1:32pm: Flyover TOT: Cessna L-19 Bird Dog Sponsored by Bubba Burger and displaying large American flag
    — 1:37:30pm: “Drivers, Start Your Engines” by: Adam Sandler
    — 1:45:30pm: Start of the 5 Hour Energy 301 (301 laps, 318.46 miles) (NBCSN/PRN/SiriusXM)
    eastern time (NASCAR.com)
  • Final practice for the 5-Hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is over – the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #19-Edwards 133.110
    #4-Harvick 132.397
    #21-Blaney 132.213
    #18-Busch 132.099
    #11-Hamlin 132.035
    slowest: #32-MacDonald 127.410 & #33-White 125.699
    notes: Light rain showers at the track stopped practice after 42 minutes.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the New Hampshire Practice 3 Speeds page (pdf).(7-18-2015)
  • First Saturday practice for the 5-Hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is over after 60 minutes – the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #4-Harvick 132.094
    #48-Johnson 131.975
    #19-Edwards 131.888
    #18-Busch 131.852
    #41-Busch 131.815
    slowest: #98-Hill 126.736 & #33-White 126.199.
    notes: #15-Bowyer and #24-Gordon made contact in the garage. Bowyer suffered some nose damage and Gordon had right rear damage.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the New Hampshire Practice 2 Speeds page (pdf).(7-18-2015)

  • Race Team Alliance says communication with NASCAR going well: Rob Kauffman, chairman of the Race Team Alliance that became a source of intrigue and speculation after it was announced roughly a year ago, said he wants the collaboration of NASCAR owners to continue working behind the scenes as a spur for growth for the entire industry. “We’ve put a lot of effort into being productive. We want the conversation and the media to be around the sport and the racing, not so much the business side,” Kauffman told USA TODAY Sports. “We use the analogy of the plumbing in the walls. We run the plumbing and make sure the hot and cold water works. That’s more our side of it. The conversation needs to be more the Chase and the race for the Chase and what goes on around the track and how it relates to racing. The business stuff I think is more secondary to the fans.” Kauffman, co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing said his dealings with NASCAR, which from its inception managed an independent contractor model with labor, have “gone very well so far.” Almost a year after the RTA’s inception, Sprint Cup drivers formed their own council as a platform to communicate with the racing series. “I think hopefully what we’ve been able to create across the whole spectrum is an increased level of communication,” Kauffman said. “Everyone is in it together. So I think the driver council is one indication. There’s a manufacturers council as well and then you have the teams together. Running a business sensibly requires communication and that’s how this is working so far.”(USA Today)(7-18-2015)

  • Allgaier working on return to HScott Motorsports: It’s crunch time for #51-Justin Allgaier. With only eight races left to qualify for this year’s NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup, the Central Illinois native is languishing in 29th place in the points standings and desperately needing a victory in one of the remaining outings to make the Chase field. There’s also another matter where time is running out and a speedy performance is of the essence. “My contract is up at the end of this year, so we’re still trying to figure all of the pieces out, still kind of working through all that,” said Allgaier. Allgaier’s Sprint Cup effort is sponsored by Brandt, a giant multi-national agribusiness concern headquartered in Springfield. Allgaier is hoping to see that arrangement continue beyond this season. “Obviously the ultimate goal would be to do what we’re doing again and I have a great relationship with Brandt,” he said. “I’ve been very fortunate to have them behind me, so I would hope we could keep putting something together. Their goal would be to have an entirely ag-based car. I know they haven’t given up on that dream and they’ve been actively seeking partners to come in and be a part of the program.” With Allgaier competing in the high-pressure, ultra-competitive world of multi-million dollar racing teams at NASCAR’s elite level, it’s vital that the pieces fall into place sooner than later.(Bloomington Pantagraph)(7-18-2015)

  • Glen Wood turns 90: On Saturday, while Ryan Blaney and the SKF-branded Ford Fusion will be busy on track at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway, folks around Stuart, Va., will gather to celebrate the 90th birthday of the team’s founder, Glen Wood. Wood, a 2012 inductee into the NASCAR Hall of Fame, is like a lot of people who grew up in the hard times of the Depression, but through hard work, accomplished great things in their adult lives. Wood was born in 1925, in the family home in the southern Virginia community of Buffalo Ridge, back in the days when doctors came to their patients’ houses and delivered children while the other kids waited outside. In his youth, the Wood family, like those around them, got by without modern conveniences like electricity. They cooked their food and heated the home with a cook stove and fireplace and used kerosene lamps for lighting. Wood went on to work various jobs, including sawmilling, before he became a full-time racer. He first became interested in the sport when he started attending races at a track near Mt. Airy, N.C. Soon he was keeping pace with the regular drivers and their race cars.
    His NASCAR teams have won 98 Cup races and 116 poles and have made 1,428 starts. Some of the best drivers from all forms of motorsports have driven for the Woods, legendary names like David Pearson and A.J. Foyt, to name just two. And, as many of his long-time car owner peers have dropped off the circuit, Wood’s race team has become NASCAR’s longest running. “I’m really proud that it has carried on until today, and I’m hoping we will be back full-time before long.”
    Wood acknowledges that his workload is far heavier than what can be expected of people not nearly 90 of age. His ability to handle it surprises him at times. “I stumble out of bed in the morning and it takes me a while to get going, but after a while I feel pretty good,” he said. “I really don’t understand how I can do as much as I do.”(Wood Brothers Racing)(7-18-2015)

  • Ambrose to determine future racing plans after season: Marcos Ambrose will make no decision about his racing future until after the completion of the PIRTEK Enduro Cup, in which he will share the DJR Team Penske Ford Falcon FG X with Scott Pye. But whichever way his decision goes, Ambrose is confident the rapidly improving team can threaten for victory in the endurance classics. The 2003-04 V8 Supercars Champion, who returned to Australia this year after 10 years racing in the USA, made the shock decision to make way for Pye in the driver’s seat after just two events as he struggled to acclimatise to the car. Since then he has tested as a co-driver in Darwin and is also expected to take part in the extended co-driver sessions at Ipswich and Sydney Motorsport Park leading into the opening enduro, the Wilson Security Sandown 500 on September 11-13. Speculation has been constant about Ambrose’s future since he stepped back. There were doubts he would even drive in the endurance races this year, let alone return to the driver’s seat full-time in 2016 to fulfil the second year of his contract. There have been plenty of driver’s linked to a Penske seat in 2016 in anticipation that Ambrose won’t be around. But at last weekend’s Castrol EDGE Townsville 400, where he was acting in his normal supporting role to Pye, Ambrose was adamant he would complete Sandown, the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 and the Castrol Gold Coast 600 before he and the team made a call on his future. “I am not going to make any call on anything because it is not fair on anyone,” he said. “I have to get a chance to get back in the car and support Scott and the team in the endurance role and have a shot to try and win those races,” Ambrose told v8supercars.com.au. “We will look at everything once we get through the endurance races and make a timely decision for everybody. And it’s not just me making the choice either, it’s whether the team wants to put me back in the car as well. “So there is a lot going on there and we will just work through the issues as they come.”(V8 SuperCars)(7-18-2015)

  • New Hampshire Motor Speedway Driver Notes & Facts – Saturday:
    · 24 different drivers have won at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, led by Jeff Burton with four.
    · Eight active drivers have multiple wins at NHMS: Kurt Busch, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Ryan Newman, Tony Stewart (each have three); Clint Bowyer, Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano (each have two)
    · Two drivers have posted consecutive wins at New Hampshire Motor Speedway: Jimmie Johnson (2003 sweep) and Kurt Busch (2004 sweep).
    · Jeff Burton is the only driver to win the July race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway three consecutive years in a row (1997, ’98 and ’99)
    · 160 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire; 129 in more than one.
    · Jeff Gordon has competed in all 40 races at New Hampshire – the only driver to accomplish the feat.
    · Only one active championship contending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver has made their first career start at New Hampshire Motor Speedway: Joey Logano (9/14/08).
    · Three drivers will attempt to make their series debuts at New Hampshire this weekend: Trevor Bayne, Matt DiBenedetto and Brett Moffit.
    · Ryan Newman leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average starting position at New Hampshire with an 8.692.
    · Dale Earnhardt Jr. leads the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at New Hampshire without visiting Victory Lane at 31; followed by Jamie McMurray and Casey Mears (24 starts each).
    · Three active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers have posted their first career win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway: Ryan Newman (9/15/02), Clint Bowyer (9/16/07) and Joey Logano (6/28/09).
    · Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart are tied for the series lead in runner-up finishes at New Hampshire with five each.
    · Jeff Gordon leads the series in top-five finishes at New Hampshire with 16; followed by Tony Stewart with 14 and Jimmie Johnson with 10.
    · Jeff Gordon leads the series in top-10 finishes at New Hampshire with 22; followed by Tony Stewart and Jimmie Johnson with 18 each.
    · Jimmie Johnson leads NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average finishing position at New Hampshire with an 10.269.
    · All 14 active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race winners at New Hampshire Motor Speedway participated in at least one or more races before visiting Victory Lane. Ryan Newman and Joey Logano won at New Hampshire in their second appearance.
    · Jeff Gordon leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in laps led at New Hampshire with 1,371 laps led in 40 starts.
    · Jeff Gordon leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in laps completed at New Hampshire with 11,666 laps completed in 40 starts.
    · Danica Patrick is the only female driver that has competed in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    (NASCAR)(7-18-2015)
  • XFINITY Entry List:There are 39 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. A few notes:
    Derek White is in the #13;
    BJ McLeod is entered in the #15;
    Erik Jones will drive the JGR #20;
    Ryan Blaney will be in the #22 for Penske;
    Timmy Hill will drive the #26;
    Kyle Busch is in the #54;
    Kevin Harvick will drive the #88 for JR Motorsports;
    Aric Almirola returns to the #98.(7-18-2015)
    See the complete list on the Indianapolis entry list page.
  • XFINITY Entry List:There are 39 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s Lilly Diabetes 250 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. A few notes:
    Derek White is in the #13;
    BJ McLeod is entered in the #15;
    Erik Jones will drive the JGR #20;
    Ryan Blaney will be in the #22 for Penske;
    Timmy Hill will drive the #26;
    Kyle Busch is in the #54;
    Kevin Harvick will drive the #88 for JR Motorsports;
    Aric Almirola returns to the #98.(7-18-2015)
    See the complete list on the Indianapolis entry list page.
  • Denny Hamlin wins XFINITY race at New Hampshire: #20-Denny Hamlin won the Lakes Region 200 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. He started from the pole and led 146 laps. #33-Austin Dillon finished second, followed by #22-Brad Keselowski, #54-Kyle Busch, #18-Daniel Suarez, #3-Ty Dillon, #7-Regan Smith, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #9-Chase Elliot, and #42-Brennan Poole.
    There were 6 cautions for 38 laps and 12 lead changes among 7 leaders. The average speed was 98.342mph. Complete results are on the New Hampshire race results page (pdf).
    (7-18-2015)
  • New Hampshire XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Denny Hamlin won the 26th Annual Lakes Region 200, his 13th victory in 150 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his second victory and sixth top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his first victory and fifth top-10 finish in five races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    Austin Dillon (second) posted his third top-10 finish in four races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. It is his 11th top-10 finish in 2015.
    Brad Keselowski (third) posted his seventh top-10 finish in seven races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    Daniel Suarez (fifth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Chris Buescher leads the point standings by 31 points over Chase Elliott.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-18-2015)
  • XFINITY Driver standings following New Hampshire:
    1) #60-Chris Buescher, 623
    2) #9-Chase Elliott, 592, -31
    3) #3-Ty Dillon, 585, -38
    4) #7-Regan Smith, 564, -59
    5) #1-Elliott Sadler, 555, -68
    6) #6-Darrell Wallace Jr. #, 547, -76
    7) #18-Daniel Suarez #, 516, -107
    8) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 506, -117
    9) #16-Ryan Reed, 502, -121
    10) #2-Brian Scott, 494, -129
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(7-18-2015)
  • Denny Hamlin on XFINITY pole at New Hampshire: #20-Denny Hamlin won the Coors Light pole for the Lakes Region 200 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway with a speed of 131.026mph. #54-Kyle Busch will start second. The rest of the top 10: #18-Daniel Suarez, #22-Brad Keselowski, #2-Brian Scott, #33-Austin Dillon, #3-Ty Dillon, #7-Regan Smith, #9-Chase Elliott, and #62-Brendan Gaughan. Did Not Qualify: None. The starting lineup is posted on the New Hampshire starting lineup page (pdf).(7-18-2015)
  • New Hampshire XFINITY Qualifying Notes:
    Denny Hamlin won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 26th Annual Lakes Region 200 with a lap of 29.069 seconds, 131.026 mph.
    This is his 18th pole in 150 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his second pole and fifth top-10 start in 2015.
    This is his first pole in five races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    Kyle Busch (second) posted his second top-10 start of 2015 and his 10th in ten races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    Daniel Suarez (third) posted his first top-10 start at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. It is his 13th in 17 races this season.
    Daniel Suarez (third) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-18-2015)


    News from July 17, 2015


  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the 5-hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway have been made.
    Pole sitter #19-Edwards chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #22-Logano took the second pit stall.
    #55-Ragan, who starts 3rd took the 32nd pit stall, with an opening in front of it.
    The 43rd and final pit stall was taken by #48-Johnson, who starts 7th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on Jayski.com’s Pit Stall Selection chart.(7-17-2015)
  • Edwards wins New Hampshire pole: #19-Carl Edwards won the Coors Light pole for the 5-hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway with speed of 135.164mph for his 1st pole of 2015, 1st at NHMS and 14th of his career. Edwards has won twice from the pole.
    #22-Logano is on the outside pole followed by #55-Ragan, #18-Busch, #11-Hamlin, #41-Busch, #48-Johnson, #20-Kenseth, #5-Kahne, #2-Keselowski, #1-McMurray, and #4-Harvick.
    Missing the race was: #62-Sorenson.
    See the starting lineup, qualifying results round-by-round, qualifying order and more Jayski.com’s New Hampshire Starting Lineup / Qualifying Page.(7-17-2015)
  • Qualifying Fast Facts – New Hampshire:
    Carl Edwards won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 23rd Annual 5-hour ENERGY 301 with a lap of 28.179 seconds, 135.164 mph.
    This is his 14th pole in 392 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his first pole and 10th top-10 start in 2015.
    This is his first pole in 22 races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    Joey Logano (second) posted his 13th top-10 start of 2015 and his fourth in 14 races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    David Ragan (third) posted his first top-10 start at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. It is his seventh in 19 races this season.
    Brett Moffitt (34th) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(7-17-2015)
  • Second Round of Qualifying for the 5-hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is over after 10 scheduled minutes.
    #22-Logano 135.448
    #55-Ragan 134.801
    #19-Edwards 134.478
    #41-Busch 134.682
    #4-Harvick 134.667
    the rest of the top 12: 18 1 2 5 20 48 11;
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to round 3: 40 16 78 21 42 15 88 10 13 47 24 3.
    (7-17-2015)
  • First Round of Qualifying for the 5-hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is over, after 20 scheduled minutes.
    #21-Blaney 134.373
    #78-Truex, Jr. 134.292
    #1-McMurray 134.103
    #5-Kahne 134.084
    #55-Ragan 134.051
    the rest of the top 24: 4 15 41 22 20 48 40 2 18 3 47 11 42 19 16 13 24 88 10;
    out of the top 24 and not advancing to round 2: 14 31 9 27 43 51 6 17 35 34 83 26 38 46 62 23 7 32 33 98.
    Drivers who will miss the race: #62-Sorenson.
    (7-17-2015)
  • Coverage of Qualifying for the 5-hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is scheduled for Friday, July 17, 2015 at 4:45pm/et.
    Television (TV): NBCSN, 4:30pm/et
    Radio: Live online at Performance Racing Network (PRN)
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: Saturday, July 18 at 11:00am/et on NBCSN
  • Qualifying Order for the 5-hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is posted. 44 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers lined up on pit road is #10-Patrick.
    The final driver lined up on pit road is #22-Logano.
    Pit road lineup order is set by a random draw, held about an hour before the first practice.
    See the full qualifying order on Jayski.com’s New Hampshire Qualifying Page.(7-17-2015)
  • First Friday practice for the 5-Hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is over after 85 scheduled minutes the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #42-Larson 133.708
    #18-Busch 133.666
    #1-McMurray 133.469
    #19-Edwards 133.431
    #2-Keselowski 133.399
    slowest: #98-Hill 125.199 & #33-White 125.010.
    notes: Qualifying is scheduled for 4:45pm/et this afternoon and will be shown on NBCSN. PRN will have radio coverage.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the New Hamsphire Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf).(7-17-2015)

  • Wise in the #32 at Indianapolis: Josh Wise won’t have to sit idle long in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, as he has landed a ride for next Sunday’s Crown Royal presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Wise who left his full-time ride with Premium Motorsports earlier this week will drive the #32 Ford Fusion in a one-off race for Go Green Racing. Archie St. Hilaire, owner of GGR says he didn’t waste any time connecting with Wise once learning of his departure from Premium. “I’m looking forward to having him back,” said St. Hilaire, who once fielded an XFINITY Series car for Wise. “He drove for me in XFINITY and did a tremendous job. I believe Josh is a very talented and capable race car driver and we’re looking forward to him representing our team at the Brickyard.” In 2011, Wise competed in eight XFINITY races for St. Hilaire’s No. 39 team with a best finish of 13th at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. St. Hilaire says that while Indianapolis is currently a one-race deal, he expects Wise to be back and often. “Without a doubt Josh can help evaluate our program and guide us in the right direction. With him being in the seat more often, he would become a tremendous asset.” St. Hilaire said Brandeis Machinery will sponsor the car in the 20th race of the season.(Catchfence), see an image of the car on the #32 team paint schemes page.(7-17-2015)

  • Bowman gets Pocono sponsor: Tommy Baldwin Racing will team with FW1 Wash & Wax for the upcoming Pennsylvania 400 at Pocono Raceway. FW1 Wash and Wax, commonly known as Fastwax, is a high-performance cleaning wax which allows users to wax their vehicles without the use of water. It’s simple to use – spray on, wipe off and polish to a shine. Unlike paste or pump spray waxes, FW1 Waterless Wash and Wax cleans and protects your investment through a combination of lubricants and lifting agents that combine through our customized application specific emulsification process.(Tommy Baldwin Racing), see an image of the car on the #7 team paint schemes page.(7-17-2015)

  • Written warnings issued to 4 teams: NASCAR handed out written warnings to four Sprint Cup Series teams Thursday for issues in technical inspections last weekend at Kentucky Speedway. Teams issued warnings were: #16 Ford driven by Greg Biffle, #13 Chevy driven by Casey Mears, #34 Ford driven by Brett Moffitt, and #33 Chevy driven by Alex Kennedy. The four teams received no formal penalties for their multiple trips through the inspection line, but an accumulation of warnings would result in a P1-level penalty, according to the NASCAR deterrence system that was introduced before the 2014 season.(NASCAR.com)(7-17-2015)

  • Most watched sporting events of the year: The year has been marked by numerous ratings milestones. Super Bowl 49 was the highest rated TV program in 30 years and the most-watched of all-time. The College Football Playoff delivered the three largest audiences in cable TV history, and college football’s top audience on any network in nine years. The NCAA Tournament was the highest rated since 1998 and the most-watched since 1993, ending with the largest basketball audience – college or pro – since the 1998 NBA Finals. The NBA Finals averaged its largest audience since that 1998 series and its highest rating since 2001. Finally, and most recently, the Women’s World Cup final scored the largest soccer audience in U.S. TV history. Even in a year when the good times have rolled across the industry, the NFL has still dominated. Nine of the ten most-watched sporting events this year have been NFL games, with six topping 40 million viewers – up from five last year.
    NASCAR events in the top 50:
    30th) Daytona 500 – 5.5 rating, 13.36 million viewers.
    35th) QuikTrip Folds of Honor 500 at Atlanta – 5.6 rating, 9.50 million viewers.
    50th) Kobalt 400 at Las Vegas – 4.6 rating, 7.74 million viewers.
    (Sports Media Watch)(7-17-2015)

  • Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. [the band] changes name: After years spent named after the nonexistent son of a famous race car driver who himself is already the son of yet another famous driver, the band Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. has decided to change its name. According to a post on its website, the group will now be known as JR JR, with its two members claiming they’ve grown out of the gimmicky moniker. With a new album on the way in the semi-near future, the move could be a smart one. Then again, changing a band’s name midway through its career might also be confusing to its already existing fans. In its Facebook post, the group makes it clear that the name change has nothing to do with the actual Dale Earnhardt Jr., choosing to include a letter he sent them in 2011 where he says he’s not only cool with their name, but actually enjoys their music.(A.V. Club)(7-16-2015)

  • New Hampshire Motor Speedway Pole Notes & Facts – Friday:
    · Five of the 40 (12.5%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at New Hampshire have been won from the Coors Light pole; the most recent was Ryan Newman in 2011.
    · The Coors Light pole is the most proficient starting position in the field, producing more winners (five) than any other starting position at New Hampshire.
    · Eight of the 40 (20%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at New Hampshire have been won from the front row: five from the pole and three from second-place.
    · 22 of the 40 (55%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at New Hampshire have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    · Nine of the 40 (22.5%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at New Hampshire have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.
    · Mark Martin won the inaugural Coors Light pole at New Hampshire in 1993 with a speed of 126.871 mph.
    · 18 drivers have Coors Light poles at New Hampshire, led by Ryan Newman with seven.
    · Four active drivers have multiple poles at New Hampshire: Ryan Newman (seven), Jeff Gordon (four), Brad Keselowski (three) and Kyle Busch (two).
    · Five drivers have won consecutive Coors Light poles at New Hampshire: Ken Schrader (1997 sweep); Jeff Gordon (1998-1999); Rusty Wallace (1999-2000); Ryan Newman (twice – 2003-2004 and 2011 sweep); Juan Pablo Montoya (2009-2010).
    · Brad Keselowski (9/19/10) is the only active driver to post his first career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light pole at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    · The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at New Hampshire is 38th, by Jeff Burton in 1999.
    · The deepest in the field that an active race winner has started at New Hampshire is 32nd, by Kurt Busch in the summer of 2003.
    · Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at New Hampshire Motor Speedway five times: fall 2001, summer 2003, fall 2004, fall 2008 and summer 2009.
    (NASCAR)(7-17-2015)
  • Virginia Lottery returning as Pole-Day sponsor at Martinsville: Martinsville Speedway and the Virginia Lottery announced a continuation of a NASCAR Sprint Cup pole day sponsorship for the Virginia Lottery through the spring of 2016. The Virginia Lottery Pole Day is scheduled for Friday, October 30 to set the field for the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 on November 1. The Virginia Lottery will also sponsor pole day for the STP 500 next spring. The Virginia Lottery generates more than $1.4 million per day for Virginia’s K-12 public schools. Operating entirely on revenue from the sale of Lottery products, the Virginia Lottery generated more than $538.6 million for Virginia’s public schools in Fiscal Year 2014. There will be plenty of excitement on the Virginia Lottery Pole Day on October 30 with practice for both the Kroger 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race and the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 and qualifying for the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500.(Martinsville Speedway)(7-17-2015)
  • Sad News – Duane Barnes: Longtime Michigan International Speedway employee Duane D. Barnes, who was involved in the bizarre jet-dryer crash during the 2012 Daytona 500, has died suddenly. Barnes, 55, of Addison passed away Tuesday at his home. He had worked at MIS for 27 years, where he was the chief jet dryer operator, fabricator and heavy equipment operator. During a caution flag in Daytona, driver Juan Pablo Montoya, who now drives in the Verizon IndyCar Series for Team Penske, spun into a pickup truck/jet dryer rig being operated by Barnes, who was on loan to Daytona International Speedway from MIS. The jet dryer, which held 200 gallons of jet fuel, was drying the track and blowing off debris during the caution. The force of the collision caused it, Barnes’ truck and Montoya’s car to explode into a fireball, bringing out a red flag with 40 laps remaining in the NASCAR Sprint Cup season-opening race. Both Montoya and Barnes managed to escape from their vehicles, and were taken to Daytona’s infield medical center. Barnes later was transported to a nearby hospital. Neither was seriously injured, although both were shaken by the wreck. Barnes is survived by his wife, Barbara, two children and four stepchildren. Funeral services for Barnes will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at Brown-Van Hemert Funeral Home in Addison.(Detroit Free Press)(7-17-2015)
  • Matt Wallace to make another start at Iowa: Proud papa Mike Wallace was in the NASCAR XFINITY Series garage on Friday as son Matt prepares to make his national series debut in Saturday’s Lakes Region 200. Three months after heart surgery, the elder Wallace said he’d rather be racing but watching his son step into the #26 JGL Racing Ford is a proud moment. Wallace also proudly announced that Matt would be racing alongside brother Kenny Wallace at Iowa, which will be the last NASCAR national series race for Kenny, he announced earlier this week. And for trivia buffs, Mike Wallace points out that his family sets a new mark this weekend with Matt’s XFINITY debut. Mike, Matt and Chrissy Wallace make up the first father-daughter-son team to all compete in a national series. Chrissy made two XFINITY Series starts in 2010, finishing 43rd at Daytona and 24th at Talladega.(NASCAR.com)(7-17-2015)
  • Austin Dillon fastest in XFINITY happy hour: #33-Austin Dillon was quickest during happy hour for the Lakes Region 200 with a speed of 130.707mph. He was followed by: #62-Brendan Gaughan, #2-Brian Scott, #18-Daniel Suarez, #54-Kyle Busch, #28-J.J. Yeley, #22-Brad Keselowski, #3-Ty Dillon, #20-Denny Hamlin, and #88-Ben Rhodes. All 40 drivers participated in the session. See complete results on the New Hampshire practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(7-17-2014)
  • Brad Keselowski fastest in first XFINITY practice: #22-Brad Keselowski was fastest during opening practice at New Hampshire Motor Speedway with a speed of 130.122mph. #20-Denny Hamlin was second, followed by: #39-Ryan Sieg, #88-Ben Rhodes, #18-Daniel Suarez, #42-Brennan Poole, #54-Kyle Busch, #33-Austin Dillon, #2-Brian Scott and #9-Chase Elliott. 36 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the New Hampshire practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(7-17-2014)
  • Todd Peck to make NXS debut at New Hampshire: Todd Peck is making his first-career start in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. He will be piloting the #15 Lily Trucking/BYB Extreme Chevy fielded by Rick Ware Racing in Saturday’s Lake Region 200 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Peck has made 14 starts in NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competition with one prior race under his belt at NHMS, which came in 2011.(Peck Motorsports)(7-17-2015)


    News from July 16, 2015


  • Harvick wins ESPY for best driver: #4-Kevin Harvick won the 2015 ESPY for best driver Wednesday night. He is the first Sprint Cup driver to win the award since Tony Stewart won in 2012. IndyCar driver Ryan Hunter-Reay was the recipient the last two years. Other nominees were: Erica Enders-Stevens, NHRA; Lewis Hamilton, Formula One; Juan Pablo Montoya, IndyCar; and Will Power, IndyCar(7-16-2015)

  • Chase clinch scenarios at New Hampshire: Only eight races remain before the 16-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field is set. Here’s what we know:
    #4-Kevin Harvick has checked off two of the three Chase criteria boxes. He has the multiple wins that guarantees a spot among the top 16 winners, and at Kentucky, he locked up a top 30 spot. All he needs to do now is start each of the remaining races in the regular season.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. can join Harvick this weekend in New Hampshire. Both Hendrick Motorsports drivers already have the multiple wins that guarantee them a spot among the top 16 winners (even if there’s a new winner in each of the remaining eight races). They can lock up a top 30 spot at New Hampshire this weekend.
    #22-Joey Logano could also join Harvick, but only with a victory.
    With help in the form of poor finishes by drivers around the 30th place bubble, a victory for #78-Martin Truex Jr. or #2-Brad Keselowski would give either multiple wins and a possible top 30 place clinch.(NASCAR)(7-16-2015)

  • Shaw’s Supermarkets debuts on the #9: Sam Hornish Jr. and the #9 Ford team will have a new look this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Shaw’s Supermarkets will serve as the primary sponsor for the team at both Sprint Cup Series races at Loudon this year. The grocery retailer carries Smithfield products across their 154 store locations throughout New England.(Richard Petty Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #9 team paint schemes page.(7-16-2015)

  • Leavine Family Racing partners with Monitronics Security: As Leavine Family Racing resumes operations in its shop following a fire that caused significant damage in early May, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race team is pleased to announce a partnership with Monitronics Security, one of the nation’s largest and fastest-growing home security alarm monitoring companies. Monitronics will outfit the refurbished facility with a new, state-of-the-art security and fire monitoring system. In addition, Monitronics will be featured as an associate on the team’s #95 Ford Fusion at Chicago, Charlotte and Texas NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race weekends. Four race cars were destroyed in the fire at the LFR shop along with a 3,000 square-foot room full of parts and equipment. No one was injured in the fire, and the team’s primary cars were located in another part of the race shop, allowing driver Michael McDowell and the #95 team to continue to race. Monitronics has provided home security and monitoring for more than 20 years, and has rapidly become an industry leader in home automation. It’s the second-largest residential security and home automation provider nationwide, with more than 1 million customers. The new system at Leavine Family Racing will include cameras throughout the facility, video recording, fire and heat detection, and 24-hour monitoring.(Leavine Family Racing)(7-16-2015)

  • Sprint ending sponsorship deal with NBA: Sprint Corp. is ending its four-year sponsorship deal with the National Basketball Association seven months after announcing an end to its NASCAR Sprint Cup deal. Sprint spokesman Dave Mellin confirmed a mutual decision between the company and league in an email Wednesday, providing what he said was a joint statement with the league. “After careful evaluation, Sprint and the NBA have decided not to extend their marketing partnership,” the statement said. “We are proud of our four-year relationship and our joint efforts to leverage technology to bring the game of basketball closer to the fans.” Word of the NBA news surfaced in an online report by Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal. “Sprint officials told the NBA last Wednesday that the company will not renew the four-year, $222 million NBA sponsorship it signed during the 2011 lockout, which was then the largest sponsorship deal in league history,” its post said. Sprint is in danger of losing its standing as No. 3 in the industry to fast growing T-Mobile US Inc. T-Mobile recently said its subscriber count grew to 58.9 million at the end of June. Sprint, with 57.1 million subscribers at the end of March, has not reported a June total. Ending both the NBA and NASCAR sponsorships sharply reduces Sprint’s sports-related marketing.(Kansas City Star)(7-16-2015)

  • New Hampshire Motor Speedway Track Notes & History – Thursday:
    · Groundbreaking for New Hampshire International Speedway, as New Hampshire Motor Speedway was originally named, was Aug. 13, 1989.
    · The 1.058-mile oval is located on approximately 1,200 acres; the multi-use complex is the largest sports facility in New England.
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race was on July 11, 1993 – won by NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace.
    · Speedway Motorsports, Inc. agreed to purchase New Hampshire International Speedway from Bob and Gary Bahre on January 11, 2008 and then renamed the track New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    · There have been 40 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway; one per year from 1993 through 1996 and two per year since.
    (NASCAR)(7-16-2015)
  • Mike Smith honored by City of Martinsville: Longtime Martinsville Speedway Public Relations Director Mike Smith was honored Tuesday by the City of Martinsville and Henry County for his contributions to the area over the past four decades. Smith, who will be leaving the speedway this Friday, was presented a joint proclamation from the city and the county “proclaiming their thanks and appreciation to Mike Smith for his dedication to our community, Martinsville Speedway, and the thousands of fans and journalists upon who he had such an impact.”
    “I really can’t put into words what this means, and for those who know me, speechless is a rare thing,” said Smith, who has lived in the Martinsville and Henry County area since the late 1970s, first as a reporter and sports editor for the Martinsville Bulletin, and as the track’s public relations director since the fall of 2000. “This area has been home for me all of my adult life. It is a special place to me; it always will be. It was a great area to raise a child; it has provided a wonderful work environment. There are so many things I will miss, but we are excited about the next chapter.” Smith will be relocating to Bristol, TN, where he will join wife Aleeta and begin work with his own public relations consulting business.(Martinsville Speedway)(7-16-2015)
  • Non-New Hampshire firewood not allowed at track this weekend: Forest rangers will be at the gates of New Hampshire Motor Speedway to confiscate out-of-state campfire wood from campers at this week’s race events. The town’s deputy fire chief, William Lake, said only local wood is acceptable for campers at the speedway’s summer events, including this weekend’s New Hampshire 301 NASCAR Sprint Cup race. Authorities either take out-of-state campfire wood or exchange it with New Hampshire wood, he said, to prevent the spread of a destructive bug called the emerald ash borer. The emerald ash borer is just one of the bugs that could arrive in out-of-state firewood, said Piera Siegert, a state entomologist, but it poses a terrible threat to the Granite State as it has struck ash trees in 11 communities. According to federal forest officials, the bug, which is native to Asia, is considered a major forest pest in the United States. It is so deadly to ash trees that it threatens the entire North American ash family, forestry officials said in a media release.(Union Leader)(7-15-2015)


    News from July 15, 2015


  • Open test at Chicago UPDATE: On Wednesday, July 15, select drivers will participate in a NASCAR open test at Chicagoland Speedway. Drivers scheduled to participate include: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #42-Kyle Larson, #16-Greg Biffle, #9-Sam Hornish Jr., #11-Denny Hamlin, #21-Ryan Blaney, #23-JJ Yeley, #3-Austin Dillon, #78-Martin Truex Jr., #41-Kurt Busch, #15-Clint Bowyer, #51-Justin Allgaier and #2-TBD. The test will be open to all fans who have a September Chicagoland Sprint Cup race ticket. Gate 4 opesn at 1:30pm/ct for parking. The CLS Legends Club Suites will be open 2:00-5:00pm local time. The test is subject to change due to weather or other circumstances.(Chicagoland Speedway)(7-9-2015)
    UPDATE: A number of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams completed a one-day open test session at Chicagoland Speedway on Wednesday. The test followed-up a two-day Goodyear tire test that featured #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #78-Martin Truex Jr., #9-Sam Hornish Jr. and #23-JJ Yeley. “We spent most of Monday working in our regular 2015 configuration,” Hornish Jr. said. “Yesterday was spent mostly in the Kentucky setup. I did two runs with the Michigan-Indy option, but that was with the wheel force car.” Today’s test session gave teams an option to run different configurations like in the tire test. But Earnhardt Jr. doesn’t think the low-downforce rules package that was used at Kentucky will make an appearance at Chicagoland Speedway when NASCAR kicks off the Chase for the Sprint Cup…at least for this season.
    “I don’t think they’ll run here,” Earnhardt said. “We may run it here soon down the road. Coming here for a three-day test, we went through tires for Goodyear. They mandated that all the cars put that little spoiler on the second day. That told me they were thinking about running that low downforce here. And then we saw the tires tearing up, we tore up some right front tires. Martin (Truex Jr.) tore up one, I tore up one, the ‘9’ tore up one, and when Goodyear sees that, the red flag comes out and you have to slow down and there’s just not enough time to really prepare for the right tire and get it on the car and get it ready for the Chase. I think we’ll run the 2015 current package that we’ve run all year here and who knows if we’ll have it next year.”
    While teams were on different agendas in the garage, Austin Dillon ran all three packages and paced the afternoon session with a lap time of 29.497 seconds (183.069 mph). Dillon tested the higher-drag package that will be used at both Indianapolis (July 26) and Michigan (Aug. 16), which includes a nine-inch spoiler and one-inch wicker bill, to gather data. Denny Hamlin was second fastest in the afternoon (180.923 mph) with Earnhardt Jr. in third (180.626 mph). Brad Keselowski, who is the defending winner at Chicagoland, was fourth quick in the afternoon with a lap time of 29.906 seconds (180.566 mph). Overall, 12 drivers participated in the open test. Truex Jr. did not return today following the tire test. Kurt Busch completed the most laps in the afternoon session, at 86. The only incident on the day came in the garage area when the battery in Kyle Larson’s car caught fire and was quickly extinguished.(Motor Racing Network)(7-15-2015)

  • Driscoll resigns from Armed Forces Foundation: Patricia Driscoll, the former girlfriend of NASCAR driver Kurt Busch, has resigned as executive director of the Armed Forces Foundation in the wake of allegations that she mishandled foundation money, Outside the Lines has learned. FBI and IRS officials began investigating Driscoll and her oversight of the nonprofit, multimillion-dollar foundation following an Outside the Lines report on May 22. The report detailed a host of questionable practices during her 12-year run leading the Washington, D.C.-based entity, which has ties to multiple sports-related entities and athletes. Driscoll is also facing a federal whistleblower complaint filed by a former foundation employee. The Armed Forces Foundation is a charity that aims to help veterans in need. Last week, the foundation’s board of directors placed Driscoll on administrative leave, and it accepted her resignation on Tuesday night. A foundation spokesman declined to comment but issued a statement noting the foundation’s accomplishments and thanking Driscoll for her work: “We are appreciative of Patricia’s 12 years of service to our armed forces, veterans, and their families.” Driscoll could not be reached for comment, but a statement issued Wednesday through the foundation attributed to her said, “I am proud of what we achieved during my time at the Armed Forces Foundation. Especially as it pertains to PTSD [post-traumatic stress disorder] and TBI [traumatic brain injury], the foundation is saving lives by creating awareness and helping veterans find the services they need before taking tragic and drastic steps such as suicide.” The foundation has hired a series of outside lawyers in recent weeks, and it began an internal investigation and authorized an independent forensic audit — both of which remain ongoing, the spokesman said.(ESPN.com)(7-15-2015)

  • Derek White to attempt Cup race at New Hampshire UPDATES: Per a post on the Carl Long Motorsports Facebook page: “Motorsports Business Management’s [XFINITY teams 13 & 40] main owner…driver Derek White will be driving in our #13 Dodge next week at Loudon. Derek is also going to start in his first Cup race. The team Derek is driving for, will put out a press release shortly. Derek will be the first North American native to compete in the Cup series. There are many people in racing with Native Indian bloodlines, however Derek still lives and works on the Kanawake Reserve outside Montréal.”
    UPDATE: White tweeted Monday afternoon, “Big news I’ll be in the #33 car Sprint Cup Series New Hampshire Speedway next Sunday”.(7-12-2015)
    UPDATE 2: Derek White, a Mohawk residing in Kahnawake, just outside of Montreal, Canada, will make his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut at New Hampshire International Speedway this weekend in the #33 Circle Sport Chevy SS. With 22 national series starts between the Camping World Truck and Xfinity Series to his credit, White will become the first Native American driver in Sprint Cup Series competition with his start in Sunday’s New Hampshire 301. In addition to Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, White also will drive in the Xfinity Series race on Saturday as part of the White Motorsports season commitment to that series. The extra track time will provide White better knowledge of the track and allow him to make the most of his debut in the Sprint Cup race on Sunday. With a background in drag racing that spans more than 30 years, White has been racing stock cars since 2009, earning 2010 Rookie-of-the-Year honors in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series before transitioning into NASCAR’s top national touring series, the NASCAR Camping World Truck and Xfinity Series. In addition to his racing in the United States, Derek’s White Motorsports also competes in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series with rookie driver Marc-Antoine Camirand and support of Grafoid, Braille Battery and O.C.R. GazBar.(Circle Sport)(7-15-2015)

  • Superspeedway qualifying format to be used at Indy, Michigan: NASCAR officials told NASCAR Sprint Cup, XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series teams on Wednesday that it plans to use the superspeedway qualifying format at Indianapolis Motor Speedway next weekend and Michigan International Speedway next month. Beginning in May at Talladega Superspeedway, there were two rounds of qualifying with drivers turning one timed lap. The top 12 advanced to the final round. Each driver took a warm-up lap, the timed lap and a cool-down lap before returning to pit road. Last weekend, the format was scheduled to be run by the Sprint Cup Series at Daytona International Speedway, but rain forced the field to be set per the rule book by practice speeds.
    Based on a random draw at Indianapolis, vehicles will line up on pit road for the first round — rather than nose in or nose out in a pit stall — and NASCAR will release drivers at a predetermined interval. The sanctioning body reserves the right to have more than one vehicle on track at a time. It’s likely that two vehicles will be on track at the same time, but the second vehicle won’t impede or help the one it follows on track. Following each lap, NASCAR will impound vehicles, and there will be a 10-minute break between rounds. Only during that break may teams make adjustments, and they will only be allowed to adjust tape and use a cool-down unit at that time. The final round qualifying order will be set from slowest to fastest speeds in the first round with starting positions 1-12 determined by the fastest laps in that second session.(NASCAR.com)(7-15-2015)

  • SKF sponsoring Blaney at New Hampshire: The #21 Wood Brothers Ford Fusion, with Ryan Blaney at the wheel, will hit the track at New Hampshire Motor Speedway this weekend with a new look representing technical partner SKF, the leading global supplier of friction-reducing solutions for industrial and transportation applications. The New Hampshire 301 will be SKF’s first of three appearances on the iconic #21 Fusion this season, while Blaney will be returning to a familiar partner, one that has special meaning to him. Last year, SKF partnered with Blaney as he made his first-ever Sprint Cup start at Kansas Speedway, where he finished 27th. SKF returned later that season to Blaney’s #12 Ford Fusion at Talladega where he started 4th, led 15 laps and finished 22nd.(Wood Brothers), see an image of the car on the #21 team paint schemes page.(7-15-2015)
  • Kentucky overnight TV Ratings UPDATE: The first NASCAR race on NBCSN was not much of a draw, but it held steady with last year. NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Kentucky drew a 2.0 overnight rating on NBCSN Saturday night, even with last year and down 17% from 2013 (2.4), both on TNT. It was the first telecast of the season on cable to avoid a decline in the metered markets. The 2.0 is tied as the second-lowest overnight for a Sprint Cup race this season, matching Michigan last month and ahead of only Kansas in May (1.5) – both of which experienced rain delays. Those races aired on Fox Sports 1. Saturday’s race was the first NASCAR telecast on NBCSN (previously VERSUS and OLN). NBCSN was in 81.6 million homes as of February, fewer than FS1 (84.8M), and the least for a NASCAR broadcaster since FX in the early 2000s.(Sports Media Watch)(7-14-2015)
    UPDATE: The first NASCAR race on NBCSN sank double-digits compared to last year on TNT. NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Kentucky drew 3.2 million viewers on NBCSN Saturday night, down 10% from last year (3.6M) and down 19% from 2013 (4.0M), both on TNT, and the smallest audience in the history of the race (dates back to 2011). The race ranks as the second-least watched of the season on any network, ahead of only rain-delayed coverage from Kansas on Fox Sports 1 (2.5M). Excluding delayed and postponed races, it ranks as the least-watched Sprint Cup telecast in at least eight years – and likely much longer than that. All seven Sprint Cup races on NBCSN and FS1 this season have declined double-digits from last year’s comparable races, which aired on FOX and TNT. Though low for NASCAR, Sunday’s race did quite well for NBCSN. Only Games 3 and 4 of the Stanley Cup Final drew a larger audience on the network this year (4.0M for each). Prior to Sunday, its top motorsports audience was a mere 642,000 viewers for a 2011 IndyCar race.(Sports Media Watch / ShowBuzz Daily)(7-15-2015)

  • Eddie MacDonald returns to the #32 at NHMS: Go Green Racing and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will head north to the granite state for this weekend’s 5-Hour Energy 301 at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Sunday’s race will mark 35-year-old Eddie MacDonald’s second career NSCS start behind the wheel of the #32 Ford Fusion for Archie St.Hilaire. MacDonald is a familiar face in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East with 184 career starts, and 26 of those coming at NHMS. This weekend will be no different, as MacDonald will be pulling double duty, competing in Friday nights United Site Service 70. During this weekends 5-Hour Energy 301; Go Green Racing has the addition of a few northeast local partners. EXIT Reality Beatrice Associates out of Middleton MA, Ninety Nine Restaurants out of Woburn MA, Bentley’s Saloon & Perkins Paving out of Arundel ME, and “The Rod Father” Custom cars out of Sanford ME.(Go Green Racing), see an image of the car on the #32 team paint schemes page.(7-15-2015)

  • Leavine Family Racing hopes to be back in shop soon UPDATE: The Leavine Family Racing team (LFR), which campaigns the #95 Ford in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, expects to move back to their Concord, NC shop after the Kentucky race on July 11, according to driver Michael McDowell. “We are still working out of Team Penske right now,” said McDowell. “We probably will for at least the next two or three weeks. But we’re getting closer to being able to move back into our shop. It won’t be like how it was. We lost a good portion of the shop that’s gonna take months and months to rebuild, but we have enough space up front to operate out of our shop again. Our plan is to move back in after Kentucky. It’s been a mess and Wally Rogers and all the guys have been working hard on that, too. And I’d say that’s where it’s affected us the most it’s just been a distraction. It’s taking a lot of our key people out of working on race cars and trying to get us back into a shop.”(Lastcar)(6-30-2015)
    UPDATE: Leavine Family Racing tweeted Tuesday, “[Wally Rodgers] & crew back at LFR shop. Long process but good to be back. Thank you all for the support #HomeSweetHome.(7-15-2015)
  • New Hampshire Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series will run the same tire codes at New Hampshire this weekend . . . this is the same combination of left- and right-side tires these teams have run at New Hampshire since 2012 . . . this is the only track at which either of these two tire codes will be run in 2015 . . . as on most NASCAR ovals one mile or less in length, teams will not run inner liners in their tires at New Hampshire.(Goodyear), see full notes, tire codes, tire pressures, set limits and more on the New Hampshire Race Info page – Goodyear section.
  • Cross Insurance sponsoring Bubba Wallace: Bubba Wallace will make his first NASCAR XFINITY Series start at New Hampshire Motor Speedway this weekend. In one NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in 2014, Wallace started third and finished second. The #6 Mustang carries the Cross Insurance colors this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Cross Insurance offers experience in all facets of insurance protection – and more than 400 knowledgeable employees – in order to assemble the team best suited to meet clients’ business and personal insurance needs.(Roush Fenway Racing), see an image of the car on the #6 team paint schemes page.(7-15-2015)
  • Entry list: There are 31 trucks on the preliminary entry list for Wednesday’s 1-800-Car-Cash Mud Summer Classic. A few notes:
    Cole Custer is in the #00;
    Chad Boat is in the #15 in place of Mason Mingus;
    Brad Keselowski is in the #29;
    Austin Dillon is in the #31;
    Ty Dillon is in the #33;
    The #35 is TBA;
    Ken Schrader is in the #52;
    Bobby Pierce is in the #63;
    Madeline Crane is in the #80;
    (7-15-2015)
    See the complete list on the Eldora entry list page.
  • Changes made to qualifying UPDATE: NASCAR announced on Wednesday revisions to its NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Keystone Light Pole qualifying procedures at all intermediate tracks. Effective immediately, qualifying on tracks 1.5 miles or longer will consist of two rounds with trucks taking one timed lap in each round. The new format will first take place at Kentucky Speedway on Thursday, July 9. “This revision puts renewed emphasis back on the pure speed of the trucks and team strategy during qualifying,” said NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Managing Director Elton Sawyer. “The trucks have unique aerodynamics at the intermediate tracks, and after discussions with drivers and teams and reviewing past qualifying sessions, we’ve found a more competitive and efficient format with the single-truck runs.” Intermediate track qualifying for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will mirror superspeedway qualifying and consists of the following:
    Two rounds of qualifying, with the top-12 fastest eligible trucks advancing to the final round;
    Trucks taking one timed lap in each round of qualifying;
    Each truck will be released in a predetermined timed interval as determined by NASCAR, with the sanctioning body reserving the right to have more than one vehicle engaging in qualifying runs at the same time;
    Qualifying order for the first round will be determined based on slowest to fastest single lap speeds posted in the first practice session; final round qualifying order is determined by slowest to fastest speeds from the first round;
    A 10-minute break will occur between the first qualifying round and the final round;
    Upon completion of the first qualifying round, the field will be set with positions 13 and beyond determined from first round qualifying speed;
    The 12 fastest vehicles from the first round will have their speeds reset for the final round with starting positions 1-12 determined by the fastest laps in the final round.(NASCAR.com)(7-1-2015)
    UPDATE: NASCAR officials told NASCAR Sprint Cup, XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series teams on Wednesday that it plans to use the superspeedway qualifying format at Indianapolis Motor Speedway next weekend and Michigan International Speedway next month. Beginning in May at Talladega Superspeedway, there were two rounds of qualifying with drivers turning one timed lap. The top 12 advanced to the final round. Each driver took a warm-up lap, the timed lap and a cool-down lap before returning to pit road. Last weekend, the format was scheduled to be run by the Sprint Cup Series at Daytona International Speedway, but rain forced the field to be set per the rule book by practice speeds.
    Based on a random draw at Indianapolis, vehicles will line up on pit road for the first round — rather than nose in or nose out in a pit stall — and NASCAR will release drivers at a predetermined interval. The sanctioning body reserves the right to have more than one vehicle on track at a time. It’s likely that two vehicles will be on track at the same time, but the second vehicle won’t impede or help the one it follows on track. Following each lap, NASCAR will impound vehicles, and there will be a 10-minute break between rounds. Only during that break may teams make adjustments, and they will only be allowed to adjust tape and use a cool-down unit at that time. The final round qualifying order will be set from slowest to fastest speeds in the first round with starting positions 1-12 determined by the fastest laps in that second session.(NASCAR.com)(7-15-2015)
  • Smithley to return to MB: Pennsylvania native, Garrett Smithley, will return to Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa., to make his second career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start on Saturday, August 1, 2015, in the Pocono Mountains 150. Smithley will once again pilot the MB Motorsports #63 Mittler Bros. Machine & Tool/ Ski Soda Chevy Silverado, the same truck he drove in his series debut back in February at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. In his inaugural truck race, Smithley came from the back of the pack to finish a respectable 18th-place with not a scratch on the truck.(Phillip Daniel Group)(7-15-2015)


    News from July 14, 2015


  • Mears will return to Germain Racing: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Casey Mears has been with Germain Racing since 2010. Today, the team announces Mears will continue to wheel the #13 GEICO Chevrolet SS in 2016. “I’m really happy to announce that Casey Mears is back in the #13 GEICO Chevrolet SS next year. He’s been an integral part of the team’s growth and success over the past 5 years and I am confident he can continue to help us move forward and reach our goals. We’ve come a long way as a team, and assembled a group of extremely talented people who enjoy working together. As the team owner, that’s really the thing I’m most proud of. And, of course, the long term support of GEICO has given us the stability we needed to make it all happen,” said team owner Bob Germain, Jr.
    “It’s really exciting to drive the #13 GEICO Chevrolet SS again in 2016. I think that it’s been a long time in the making here at Germain Racing, being competitive at the Cup level. It’s been a long process to get the GEICO program to where we are now. We are finally starting to see some of the benefits from all the hard work from the last four or five years. I’m very excited to carry on the GEICO relationship and to be a part of Germain Racing’s continued growth,” said driver Casey Mears.(Germain Racing)(7-14-2015)

  • Stewart disappointed in season; not planning to retire: #14-Tony Stewart participated in a NASCAR teleconference on Tuesday and talked about a variety of issues:
    Q. New Hampshire is coming up on the docket for you. Do you feel it’s a race that could spark something for you?
    STEWART: Honestly, we’re just kind of trying to get our program back on track. I don’t know that we’ve circled any track and said anything right now. It’s been a disappointing year up to this point. It seems like no matter what the package is, we seem to fight the same balance.
    Q. Tony, you told me to tell people to leave off of [crew chief] Chad Johnston. Are you still feeling like you’re making progress? Can you also mention how, you said you were struggling with the new package, how you would like to see NASCAR move forward on some of this?
    STEWART: I don’t know that I’m really good at giving direction at what NASCAR needs to do right now when we can’t get our balance a little better than where we’re at. You know, I still really like working with Chad Johnston. I don’t feel like he’s what’s holding us back. There’s something about the way this package is that just doesn’t suit my driving style. So, you know, I’m holding him and the team back versus vice versa. So it’s just a matter of me trying to figure it out, figure out how to go forward and get our cars better.
    Q. You’re involved with three other teams there at Stewart-Haas Racing, in addition to your own. From an ownership standpoint, do you believe that NASCAR is headed in the right direction with these rules packages?
    STEWART: Yeah, I mean, anything that’s going to make the fans happier, you know, put better races on is in all of our best interests. The part that’s hard for the teams is the process, you know, changing this, changing that. All that cost comes out of our pockets. It doesn’t come out of NASCAR’s pocket. NASCAR decides they want to change something, we’re the ones that have to spend the money to do it. They don’t spend a dime to do it. That’s the part that’s hard. I think all of the owners will do whatever’s in the best interest of making it better. I just would like to see NASCAR share some of that expense versus saying, Hey, we got an idea, we want to try this, then the teams have to spend all the money to do it.
    Q. Tony, I wonder where you feel like the sport has the most momentum right now, where it’s making the greatest strides, and where you feel like it has to make the greatest strides?
    STEWART: I guess if I had to look and say what I thought was the greatest thing, it’s seeing NASCAR as a whole work with the teams and the drivers and be more accommodating as far as having the Drivers Council, the RTA, them working with NASCAR the way they are. I mean, that’s something in the 17 years I’ve been in the Cup Series I’ve never seen. it was all right to walk in the trailer and give them an idea, and that’s as far as it always went. Now you’re actually having meetings, working hand-in-hand with NASCAR. I think that’s something that I’ve never seen in this sport, which to me is really exciting as a driver and owner. I think it’s great. so, you know, as far as the flipside of that, I really don’t know what the answeris for that. But, I mean, I definitely think that seeing NASCAR’s involvement on the more personal side, I’d love to see Brian France show up at some of these council meetings and stuff, but I’m sure he’s busy.
    Q. How much longer do you see yourself [racing]?
    STEWART: Right now I’m just trying to figure out how to get my car working, to be honest with you.
    (Team Chevy)(7-14-2015)

  • France pleased with rules package at Kentucky: NASCAR Chairman Brian France liked what he saw from the racing Saturday night with the lower-downforce package, but admits he wants to see more drafting and pack racing. France made those comments Monday afternoon on “Sirius Speedway” on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “What we’re really looking for is how tight is the racing?” France said. “How many lead changes are there? How much passing through the field is going on? How many more teams are competitive by a given package? What accomplishes those goals the best? That’s how we go about sorting it out. We’re going to try some things coming up here at Indy (with a high-drag package). I’ll tell you what we didn’t see that we would like to see more of is more drafting. We didn’t see as much of that as we would have liked and more pack racing. You saw that on the restarts but not quite as much (as we’d prefer). There were a lot of things we liked, definitely an improvement on the races that have happened at Kentucky.” France said the race provided the best data possible for NASCAR instead of a test and hinted using races more often to evaluate packages. “We’re going to continue to do that provided we don’t break the bank for the team owners as we go about it,” France told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “Our goal, beyond safe racing, which is our first goal, is that close, tight racing where more teams have a shot to win if their talents and hard work take them there.” NASCAR will take the same package teams used at Kentucky to the Sept. 6 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. The only change is that Goodyear will have a tire specific to that package for that race. It didn’t have a tire specific to the Kentucky change because those adjustments came too late for Goodyear to provide another tire.(NBC Sports)(7-13-2015)
  • Kentucky overnight TV Ratings: The first NASCAR race on NBCSN was not much of a draw, but it held steady with last year. NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Kentucky drew a 2.0 overnight rating on NBCSN Saturday night, even with last year and down 17% from 2013 (2.4), both on TNT. It was the first telecast of the season on cable to avoid a decline in the metered markets. The 2.0 is tied as the second-lowest overnight for a Sprint Cup race this season, matching Michigan last month and ahead of only Kansas in May (1.5) – both of which experienced rain delays. Those races aired on Fox Sports 1. Saturday’s race was the first NASCAR telecast on NBCSN (previously VERSUS and OLN). NBCSN was in 81.6 million homes as of February, fewer than FS1 (84.8M), and the least for a NASCAR broadcaster since FX in the early 2000s.(Sports Media Watch)(7-14-2015)

  • Sherry Pollex going to Washington to advocate for ovarian cancer research: Sherry Pollex, a longtime champion of pediatric cancer fundraising through the Martin Truex Jr. Foundation, is taking on another cancer-related mission. Pollex, who was diagnosed with Stage 3 ovarian cancer 11 months ago, will be on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., Wednesday (July 15) on behalf of the Ovarian Cancer National Alliance. She will meet with Senators and Members of the House of Representatives to discuss ovarian cancer funding and advocate for policies ensuring that cancer patients have access to cancer therapy at affordable out-of-pocket costs. Pollex will advocate for full federal funding of ovarian cancer research and education programs at the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Pollex will also advocate on behalf of a bill called The Cancer Treatment Parity Act that ensures women to have access to affordable oral chemotherapy treatments. Oral chemotherapy treatments, unlike traditional intravenous drugs, are not always covered by insurance companies, and many patients are responsible for extremely high and unmanageable co-pays. Pollex, who is the girlfriend of NASCAR star driver Martin Truex Jr. of the Furniture Row Racing team, will be accompanied to Capitol Hill by three members of the Ovarian Cancer National Alliance team — Calaneet Balas (CEO), Jeremy Scott (Policy Counsel) and Lisa Mauti (Vice President of Cause Marketing).(Furniture Row Racing)(7-14-2015)

  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at New Hampshire
    #24-Jeff Gordon 107.3
    #14-Tony Stewart 106.9
    #11-Denny Hamlin 103.2
    #48-Jimmie Johnson 102.1
    #42-Kyle Larson 99.1
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. 97.1
    #2-Brad Keselowski 95.6
    #15-Clint Bowyer 95.0
    #18-Kyle Busch 94.7
    #4-Kevin Harvick 93.1
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2004-2014 races (20 total) among active drivers at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)

  • Habul in the #20 for 3 races: SunEnergy1 embarks on their second race of the 2015 season this weekend. Following Denny Hamlin’s race at New Hampshire, road-course veteran Kenny Habul will assume the driving duties of the #20 SunEnergy1 Toyota Camry at the NASCAR XFINITY Series road-course races beginning at Watkins Glen on August 8, Mid Ohio on August 15 and Road America on August 29.(Joe Gibbs Racing)(7-14-2015)
  • Zest on the #60 at NHMS: The #60 Ford Mustang carries the Zest colors this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Zest has been keeping families Zestfully Clean for over half a century. Zest falls under the Brynwood Partners umbrella, along with Bit-O-Honey, which has appeared on Chris Buescher’s car twice this season.(Roush Fenway Racing), see an image of the car on the #60 team paint schemes page.(7-14-2015)

  • Kenny Wallace in the #20 at Iowa UPDATE: Kenny Wallace will make his third NASCAR XFINITY Series start of the 2015 season at Iowa Speedway in the U.S. Cellular 250 Presented by New Holland on August 1. The veteran driver will go behind the wheel of the #20 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing at the short track. Wallace finished 23rd in the May race at Iowa.(NASCAR.com)(7-17-2015)
    UPDATE: The August 1st U.S. Cellular 250 at Iowa Speedway will be Kenny Wallace’s third NASCAR Xfinity Series start of 2015. The ever-popular Wallace announced that after what will be a series-record 547 career starts, the Iowa event will also mark the final start of his 26-year NASCAR career. While his NASCAR career may be coming to a close, the man affectionately known to friends and fans as “Herman,” doesn’t plan to go out without a fight. He heads to Iowa with what is likely one of his best chances ever to capture the checkers. Wallace will be at the helm of the ever-competitive #20 U.S. Cellular Toyota in the event. The #20 team currently sits fourth overall in the Xfinity Series Owner Standings and won the pole position for the season’s first race at Iowa Speedway. Wallace noted, “To me, this isn’t a sad moment; I’m at a truly happy place in my life right now. After all, not too many guys get to have the privilege of being a NASCAR driver, especially for as long as I have. I really wanted to end my long career on a positive note and I’m very excited about our chances in Iowa. The #20 team is one of the best in the sport and I’m looking forward to having a chance to end my NASCAR career with a great finish. I really want to thank U.S. Cellular for helping me make that happen.” When all is said and done after Iowa, the former Xfinity Series Rookie of the Year and three-time Most Popular Driver will leave behind a remarkable legacy of longevity and perseverance that is nearly unparalleled in the sport. This is shown by what will be–following Iowa–an all-time record 547 career Xfinity Series starts and 904 combined NASCAR national series starts (14th all-time). After making his NASCAR debut in Dale Earnhardt’s #8 Xfinity Series ride at Martinsville in 1988, Wallace would go on to finish among the top-10 in the Xfinity Series standings in 10 of his 14 full seasons, including a runner-up finish in 1991. His nine series wins and ten poles rank him among the top-40 all-time in both categories, while his 173 top-ten finishes mark the seventh-best all-time career total. Wallace may have most often competed in the Xfinity Series, but he also enjoyed a fruitful career in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series as well, where he had 344 career starts, including three poles. While he may not have reached victory lane in the Cup series, Wallace played a vital role in several of its most memorable finishes, including pushing the late Dale Earnhardt to his final NASCAR victory at Talladega in 2000. In recent years, Wallace has been able to capitalize on his charismatic personality and racing experience in becoming a NASCAR analyst for FOX Sports. In that role, he currently appears on Fox Sports 1’s NASCAR RaceDay and NASCAR Victory Lane shows.(Wallace PR)(7-14-2015)
  • Kentucky TV Ratings: NASCAR Xfinity Series racing from Kentucky drew 1.1 million viewers on NBCSN Friday night, down 13% from last year (1.3M) and down 12% from 2013 (1.2M), both on ESPN. Excluding rainouts, the race earned the second-smallest Xfinity Series audience this season, ahead of only coverage from Richmond on Fox Sports 1 (1.09M to 1.07M). (Sports Media Watch via ShowBuzz Daily)(7-14-2015)
  • Lafferty planning Bristol run: Chris Lafferty and Lafferty Motorsports are pleased to announce a partnership with rocker superstars Saving Abel. Those who know Chris Lafferty know that when he is not driving a race car he can be found singing with his own band 89 Reasons. 89 Reasons will be opening several shows as direct support for Saving Abel beginning August 11th in Midland, TX. In addition, Saving Abel will come on board for several NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races as a primary sponsor of Chris Lafferty on his #89 truck beginning with the August 19th UNOH 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway. Lafferty will also pilot the Saving Abel car in the ARCA Racing Series’ Allen Crowe 100 at Illinois State Fairgrounds on August 23rd.(Lafferty Motorsports)(7-14-2015)


    News from July 13, 2015


  • Entry List for the 5-hour ENERGY 301 Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is posted, 44 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including: #21-Blaney, #32-Eddie MacDonald, #33-Derek White, #62-TBA, #98-TBA.
    Drivers who need to be in the top-36 in speed and have no provisional available to them (lowest in owners points): #62-TBA
    Drivers who would miss the race if qualifying is canceled (least race attempts): #21-Blaney
    See the full entry list at Jayski.com’s New Hampshire Entry List

  • Derek White to attempt Cup race at New Hampshire UPDATE: Per a post on the Carl Long Motorsports Facebook page: “Motorsports Business Management’s [XFINITY teams 13 & 40] main owner…driver Derek White will be driving in our #13 Dodge next week at Loudon. Derek is also going to start in his first Cup race. The team Derek is driving for, will put out a press release shortly. Derek will be the first North American native to compete in the Cup series. There are many people in racing with Native Indian bloodlines, however Derek still lives and works on the Kanawake Reserve outside Montréal.”
    UPDATE: White tweeted Monday afternoon, “Big news I’ll be in the #33 car Sprint Cup Series New Hampshire Speedway next Sunday”.(7-12-2015)

  • Wise leaves #98 team: Josh Wise tweeted Monday morning, “I have parted ways with Premium Motorsports. The team and I did not share the same goals moving forward.”. The team was recently purchased from Phil Parsons by Jay Robinson.(7-13-2015)

  • NASCAR explains decision to cancel Kentucky qualifying: NASCAR’s decision to cancel Sprint Cup qualifying Friday at Kentucky Speedway to give teams more practice time raised questions among some fans and led to #21-Ryan Blaney, #95-Michael McDowell and #30-Travis Kvapil failing to make the field. Monday, Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, explained on “The Morning Drive” the sanctioning body’s decision to cancel qualifying for both Cup and the Xfinity Series last week.
    Although extra practice time had been scheduled, rain and water seeping up to the track limited Cup teams to 49 minutes of practice before the decision was made to cancel qualifying and give teams an additional 90 minutes of practice. “Under all the circumstances we were faced with (at Kentucky) … the desire from the majority of the garage to get some more time on the track prior to the race became our priority at that point,” O’Donnell told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “And then the challenges we had drying the track. We didn’t know if we’d even get to a point where we could get cars on the track, so we elected to go early and have everybody focus on setting up for the race. One of the challenges for the teams is it’s a three-hour transition going to qualifying trim vs. going back. It also helped the teams that were there to really prepare everything for the race vs. qualifying. Certainly, we can be challenged for that, but it was something that that race and the circumstances dictated for us, and, ultimately, the decision we made wanting to put the best possible race on Saturday night.”(NBC Sports)(7-13-2015)

  • Kentucky Speedway has made no decision on when to repave: It’s still too soon for Kentucky Speedway general manager Mark Simendinger to answer one of the biggest questions moving forward about the 1.5-mile oval in Sparta, Ky. When’s the time to finally re-pave? “We’ve got a track that certainly produced great races,” Simendinger said Sunday, after Kyle Busch won the previous night’s Quaker State 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event. “Normally you’d say, ‘Don’t touch those.’ But we also have a track that took us almost four hours to dry, so that’s not good.” Paired with a new NASCAR rules package that drew rave reviews from drivers, Kentucky Speedway’s 15-year-old surface produced its best Cup Series product yet on Saturday night. Competitors were able to pass both on the yellow line and near the wall, with Busch and eventual runner-up Joey Logano changing the lead more than once inside the final 20 laps. While all three races during the triple-header weekend went off without a hitch, qualifying for each — plus extra Cup Series testing time for the low-downforce rules package — was washed out. Rain didn’t necessarily prevent a dry track, but rather “weepers” — ground water spewing up through cracks in the track surface. “It was a very, very unusual situation as far as us being in the middle of July and having such saturated ground,” Simendinger said. “We don’t want to overreact — let everything settle in and get feedback from our drivers and maintenance guys.” Either way, Simendinger said, a potential re-pave wouldn’t happen before the NASCAR Xfinity Series’ return to Sparta, Ky., this September. Then track officials have until the following summer to make a decision about the surface for next summer’s Quaker State 400 weekend.(Louisville Courier-Journal)(7-13-2015)

  • Earnhardt, Jr. receives ChalleNGe Champion Award: Prior to Saturday night’s at Kentucky Speedway, Dale Earnhardt Jr. received a special award. It was the 2015 ChalleNGe Champion Award from the National Guard Youth Foundation. The National Guard Youth Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to addressing the nation’s school dropout crisis by giving youth a second chance through the National Guard. The National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program is conducted at 35 academies across the country and consists of a five-and-a-half month residential phase and a 12-month post residential phase during which mentors continue to provide guidance and support to graduates. In July 2013, Earnhardt raced with the NGYF logo on his car at Kentucky and invited a few NGYF cadets to attend the race. They received special tour of Hendrick Motorsports and a VIP experience at the track.(Hendrick Motorsports)(7-13-2015)

  • Kenny Wallace in the #20 at Iowa: Kenny Wallace will make his third NASCAR XFINITY Series start of the 2015 season at Iowa Speedway in the U.S. Cellular 250 Presented by New Holland on August 1. The veteran driver will go behind the wheel of the #20 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing at the short track. Wallace finished 23rd in the May race at Iowa.(NASCAR.com)(7-17-2015)
  • 300th NXS start for Busch: Hot off his second NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win of the season at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, Monster Energy driver Kyle Bush returns to the seat of the #54 Monster Energy Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Camry this week at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon. After recuperating from injuries sustained in the season-opener race that left Busch out of his familiar black machine for 11 weeks, Busch now continues his original schedule for NASCAR XFINITY Series racing this week at New Hampshire in the #54 Toyota Camry. At the New England track this Saturday, Busch will make his 300th XFINITY Series start piloting the black Toyota Camry and works to offer the Joe Gibbs Racing #54 team their third taste of victory this year.(Joe Gibbs Racing)(7-13-2015)
  • XFINITY Entry List:There are 39 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s Lakes Region 200 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. A few notes:
    Derek White will be in the #13;
    BJ McLeod returns to the #15;
    Jeff Green in still in the #19;
    Denny Hamlin will drive the JGR #20;
    Dylan Lupton is back in the #25;
    Matt Wallace will make his NXS debut in the #26;
    Kyle Busch is in the #54;
    Ben Rhodes will drive the JR Motorsports #88.(7-14-2015)
    See the complete list on the New Hampshire entry list page.
  • 5-hour ENERGY Shots sponsoring Cup race at New Hampshire: The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway has received an entitlement boost from the makers of 5-hour ENERGY shots before it drops the green flag next weekend. Speedway officials announced on Monday that the energy shot will be the title sponsor for the 5-hour ENERGY 301 on July 19. The 5-hour ENERGY 301 will cap off the Magic Mile’s 25th anniversary race weekend, July 17-19, joining a jam-packed schedule that includes XFINITY Series, Whelen Modified Tour and K&N Pro Series East races. With a significant presence in NASCAR for nearly a decade, 5-hour ENERGY shots are the primary sponsor of Clint Bowyer’s #15 Toyota. Bowyer is a two-time New Hampshire Motor Speedway winner and was the first driver to ever win a race across the Granite Stripe, the speedway’s start/finish line, installed in September of 2011.(NHMS)(7-13-2015)
  • Furious 7 to sponsor Chicago XFINITY race: Chicagoland Speedway announced Furious 7, the $1.5 billion worldwide box-office blockbuster and most successful installment of the Fast & Furious franchise, as the title sponsor for its NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, Sept. 19. The Furious 7 300 will feature cast member Chris “Ludacris” Bridges will serve as the Grand Marshal of the Furious 7 300 as NASCAR’s stars of tomorrow set the stage for the first race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Furious 7 will be released on Digital HD on August 25 and Blu-ray, DVD, and On Demand on September 15 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment (UPHE) as an all-new extended edition. The film has become the highest-grossing movie in the history of the franchise.(Chicagoland Speedway)(7-13-2015)


    News from July 12, 2015


  • Positive response to rules package at Kentucky: By every measurable category – including the eye test -the debut of NASCAR’s low downforce rules package Saturday night at Kentucky Speedway was a whopping success. And this wasn’t even the finished product. The Quaker State 400 was one of the best 1.5-mile track races in recent years and certainly the best at Kentucky, which had produced a series of snoozers in its four previous events. There were a track-record 22 green-flag passes for the lead – including one in the final 20 laps — and overall green-flag passes more than doubled from last year’s race (2,665 on Saturday vs. 1,147 in 2014). Drivers heaped praise on the package and fans on social media overflowed with positive feedback.
    “I felt like a race car driver tonight,” a grinning Carl Edwards said. “I could actually drive the car. I was steering and sliding — I about wrecked a few times. I felt like I was doing something, not just sitting in line.”
    Race winner Kyle Busch had perhaps the truest test of the new package. While chasing down Joey Logano late in the race, he got close enough to the car in front of him where it usually would have given him a big aero push – so-called dirty air. This time, though, was different. “When I got to Logano, I knew he was going to come up and block my lane and take my air,” Busch said. “But when he did, it wasn’t as bad as it has been with the other aero package where you just stall out and that guy can basically manipulate whatever you’re going to do.
    And the most exciting element of the new rules package? It was operating without a key component: A soft tire that will complement the shorter rear spoiler and wider splitter. Tire supplier Goodyear didn’t have enough notice to build such a tire, but it will be ready for the next race with the low downforce package on Sept. 6 at Darlington Raceway.
    NASCAR had been reluctant to alter anything and still hasn’t pulled the trigger on any sweeping changes. Officials are planning a high drag package for two upcoming tracks (Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Michigan International Speedway), which is the opposite of what the drivers asked for. And beyond Darlington, there are no set plans to run the low downforce package again. Kentucky was sort of a mid-season experiment with nothing to lose based on the track’s history.(USA Today)(7-12-2015)

  • Harvick can become first driver to officially clinch Chase spot UPDATE: Nine races remain until the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Chances for spots in NASCAR’s playoffs are dwindling, and a number of big names are still looking for their first win of 2015, including Kasey Kahne, Jeff Gordon, Ryan Newman, Aric Almirola, Greg Biffle and AJ Allmendinger, all of whom made last year’s Chase. This weekend, Kevin Harvick can clinch a top 30 spot. That, combined with his multiple wins which guarantees him to be among the top 16 winners, will officially clinch a spot in the Chase, assuming he starts the remaining races in the regular season. With a 48-point victory, Dale Earnhardt Jr. could also clinch, but would need lots of help to clinch a top 30 spot.(NASCAR)(7-9-2015)
    UPDATE: Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), finished eighth in the Kentucky 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta on Saturday night. The finish put Harvick 410 points ahead of the driver listed 31st in the points standings and clinched his berth in the 10-race NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup championship.(Stewart Haas Racing)(7-12-2015)

  • Derek White to attempt Cup race at New Hampshire: Per a post on the Carl Long Motorsports Facebook page: “Motorsports Business Management’s [XFINITY teams 13 & 40] main owner…driver Derek White will be driving in our #13 Dodge next week at Loudon. Derek is also going to start in his first Cup race. The team Derek is driving for, will put out a press release shortly. Derek will be the first North American native to compete in the Cup series. There are many people in racing with Native Indian bloodlines, however Derek still lives and works on the Kanawake Reserve outside Montréal.”(7-12-2015)

  • Furniture Row now aiming for second team in 2017: Furniture Row Racing is having its best season to date with driver Martin Truex Jr. earning 14 top-10 finishes in the first 17 races of the season, which has the Denver, Colorado-based organization looking toward the future. Owner Barney Visser told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on Saturday that he would like to have a second team in less than two years. “We’d like to have (a second team) by ’17,” Visser said. “I doubt that it will happen by ’16, but we think maybe ’17 it’s going to roll around the way we need it to. We’re going to have to attract the sponsors. When we finally get the sponsors, we’ll be able to do it.” Earlier this season, Visser also said his team needed more manufacturer support than Chevrolet was currently providing, and the team had spoken with the sport’s other manufacturers, Ford and Toyota.(NASCAR.com)(7-12-2015)
  • Kentucky Race and Commercial Breakdown of the Quaker State 400: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Saturday’s race. Began recording at the Invocation of the race at 7:30 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 10:53 PM. Did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. NBCSN was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 113
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 52
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 87
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 47
    Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 26
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 20
    Number of times NBCSN utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 4
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast (including company logos ‘floating’ in corners of the screen): 56
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 3 min. 55 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 7:30 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 10:53 AM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 203
    Minutes of race broadcast: 164
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 39
    Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 9
    Number of missed restarts: 1
    Number of ‘mystery cautions’ (debris not shown): 2
    Total race brdcst time 164 Total comm. brdcst time 39
    See full reports, sponsor links, much more details at CawsnJaws.com.(7-12-2015)


    News from July 11, 2015


  • Kyle Busch wins at Kentucky: #18-Kyle Busch won the Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway for his 2nd win of the season, 2nd win at Kentucky, and 31st career win. He led 163 of the 267 laps.
    #22-Logano finished 2nd followed by #11-Hamlin, #19-Edwards, #20-Kenseth, #2-Keselowski, #24-Gordon, #4-Harvick, #48-Johnson, and #41-Busch.
    #42-Larson, who started from the pole, had to pit for a tire rub with 50 laps to go, then made contact with the wall and finished 35th.
    Harvick increases the drivers points lead to 68 points. #48-Johnson and #22-Logano are tied for 2nd.
    Busch is now just 87 points out of 30th (to get in the Chase) and needs around a 17th place average finish to crack the top 30 in the 8 races before the Chase.
    There were 13 lead changes among 8 drivers. There were 11 cautions for 49 yellow flag laps. The 11 cautions are a record at Kentucky Speedway.
    The average speed was 129.402mph.
    See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Penalty Report (pdf) and Lap Summary Report (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-11-2015)
  • Race Fast Facts – Kentucky:
    Kyle Busch won the 5th Annual Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts, his 31st victory in 372 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his second victory and third top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his second victory and fifth top-10 finish in five races at Kentucky Speedway.
    Joey Logano (second) posted his third top-10 finish in five races at Kentucky Speedway. It is his 13th top-10 finish in 2015.
    Denny Hamlin (third) posted his second top-10 finish in five races at Kentucky Speedway.
    Kevin Harvick leads the point standings by 68 points over Jimmie Johnson.
    Kyle Busch, currently 35th in points, is now 87 points out of the top 30.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(7-11-2015)
  • 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup CHASE Standings:
    [after Kentucky, race 18 of 36]
    (by wins, then by points standings)
    1) #48-Jimmie Johnson [4 wins], 624, -67 (2nd in driver points)
    2) #4-Kevin Harvick [2 wins], 692 (1st)
    3) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [2 wins], 616, -76 (4th)
    4) #41-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 542, -150 (8th)
    5) #22-Joey Logano [1 win], 642, -68 (3rd)
    6) #78-Martin Truex Jr. [1 win], 596, -96 (5th)
    7) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 559, -133 (6th)
    8) #20-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 540, -152 (9th)
    9) #11-Denny Hamlin [1 win], 522, -170 (11th)
    10) #19-Carl Edwards [1 win], 449, -243 (17th)
    [would be in the Chase via points standings]
    11) #1-Jamie McMurray, 556, -136 (7th in driver points)
    13) #24-Jeff Gordon, 537, -155 (10th)
    12) #5-Kasey Kahne, 513, -179 (12th)
    14) #27-Paul Menard, 509, -183 (13th)
    15) #31-Ryan Newman, 497, -195 (14th)
    16) #15-Clint Bowyer, 490, -202 (15th)
    [has a win but not in the top 30 in drivers points to make Chase]
    35) #18-Kyle Busch [2 wins], 200, 87 pts out of 30th (needs to avg 17th place finish)
    (ties are broken by wins, 2nds, 3rds, etc)
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-11-2015)
  • Top-10 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Drivers Points Standings:
    [after Kentucky, race 18 of 36]
    1) #4-Kevin Harvick [2 wins], 692
    2) #48-Jimmie Johnson [4 wins], 624, -68
    3) #22-Joey Logano [1 win], 624, -68
    4) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [2 wins], 616, -76
    5) #78-Martin Truex Jr. [1 win], 596, -96
    6) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 559, -133
    7) #1-Jamie McMurray, 556, -136
    8) #41-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 542, -150
    9) #20-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 540, -152
    10) #24-Jeff Gordon, 537, -155
    (ties are broken by wins, 2nds, 3rds, etc)
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-11-2015)
  • Kentucky Rookie of the Year Race Results & Points:
    #34-Brett Moffitt, finished 32nd, 11 rookie points
    #33-Alex Kennedy, finished 40th, 10 rookie points
    #26-Jeb Burton, finished 41st, 9 rookie points
    #83-Matt DiBenedetto, finished 42nd, 8 rookie points
    #66-Tanner Berryhill, did not race, not entered
    See the 2015 Rookie of the Year page for rules, standings and more.(7-11-2015)
  • Kentucky Saturday Pre-Race Schedule:
    — 5:30 p.m.: NSCS Driver/Crew Chief Meeting
    — 6:55 p.m.: Driver Introductions
    — 7:27:30 p.m.: Moment of Silence (in recognition of Fallen Cincinnati Police Officer Sonny Kim and fallen Cincinnati Firefighter FAO Daryl Gordon)
    — 7:28 p.m.: God Bless America performed by: Leo Welsh, National Anthem Singer for the Columbus Blue Jackets
    — 7:30 p.m.: Presentation of Colors by: Boone County Sheriff’s Department
    — 7:30:20 p.m.: Invocation by: Larry Campbell, Kentucky Raceway Ministries
    — 7:31 p.m.: National Anthem by: 113th Army Band from Fort Knox, Kentucky
    — 7:32:30 p.m.: Flyover TOT by: AeroShell Aerobatic Team (4 aircrafts)
    — 7:37:30 p.m.: “Drivers, Start Your Engines” by: George Sherman, President of Advance Auto Parts
    — 7:45:30 p.m.: Start of the Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts (267 laps/400.5 miles) TV: NBCSN Radio: PRN/SiriusXM
    eastern time (NASCAR.com)

  • Gaughan will not return to #62 team: Five months after agreeing to a one-year deal to return to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Brendan Gaughan is taking a step back. Gaughan and Premium Motorsports have parted ways, effective immediately, the 39-year-old confirmed in a press conference before a NASCAR XFINITY Series practice session at Kentucky Speedway. Gaughan, a native a Las Vegas, Nevada, leaves Premier Motorsports after attempting 16 races for the team in 2015. Gaughan made eight of those races, scoring a best finish of 28th in the July 5 Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Reed Sorenson will jump behind the wheel of the #62 Chevrolet this weekend. The team’s plans beyond this weekend are currently unknown.(Frontstretch)(7-10-2015)

  • Kyle Busch not back to 100% yet: #18-Kyle Busch talked to the media Friday at Kentucky Speedway and was asked how he is feeling:
    How far back to 100 percent are you in health?
    Busch: “When I’m inside the race car, I feel like I’m 100 percent. I feel like I’m fine for the things I have to do and all the abilities that I have to have to drive a car – I feel like I’m at 100 percent. Walking around here, I can’t. They haven’t approved me to go running yet. If you say me being able to go for a run is 100 percent, I’m probably 85.”(Toyota Racing)(7-11-2015)

  • Wood discusses missing another race because of rain: For the second straight week, #21-Wood Brothers Racing has had to go home because qualifying was rained out. Co-owner Eddie Wood talked about the disappointment in the garage.
    EDDIE WOOD, Co-Owner – #21 Snap-On Ford Fusion – “The rules are the rules. In the event of a rainout they set the field by attempts, which means how many races you’ve attempted to race this year. So us and the #95 have attempted less races than 43 other guys, so we’re the ones that are out but that’s not a new rule. It’s been that way for as long as I can remember, and then they set the field by the practice speeds. A lot of times people get it confused with how it works, but we’ve gone a long time and not missed a race with weather. Missing races, if you’re slow and you miss a race because you’re not fast enough, is a bad deal. That just kills your soul, but you can’t do anything about the weather. We’ve been really lucky for the past seven years and haven’t missed one, but now the numbers seem to be leveling out. We’re gonna run next week at Loudon, so we’ll head up that way and hope we don’t get rained out. I’m gonna stop looking at weather apps, I tell you that. I’m done as far as that is concerned.”
    YOU TALKED ABOUT HOW IT FEELS WHEN YOU DON’T MAKE A RACE BECAUSE YOU’RE SLOW, BUT WHAT ABOUT WHEN YOU’RE FAST LIKE THE LAST COUPLE OF WEEKS? “You’re kind of in the same place, but you’re not hanging your head because you’re slow. When you’re slow in here it’s just a really bad feeling. Fortunately now, with our relationship with Team Penske and everything we’ve got going with Ford Motor Company and Motorcraft/Quick Lane, our cars are fast. We were fast at Daytona and we were fast here today, so you just look forward knowing everytime you go to the next race track you’re gonna be fast. If it doesn’t rain and you get qualifying in and you make the race, then you’ll forget about this and won’t even think about it.”(Ford Racing)(7-11-2015)

  • Kentucky Speedway Notes & Facts – Saturday – race:
    · There have been four NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Kentucky Speedway since the first race in 2011 – one race per season.
    · The fewest laps led in a single race by an eventual NSCS winner at Kentucky is 38 laps by Matt Kenseth in 2013.
    · The most laps led in a single race by an eventual NSCS winner at Kentucky is 199 laps by Brad Keselowski in 2014.
    · Joe Gibbs Racing and Team Penske are tied for the series lead in wins at Kentucky with two each: Joe Gibbs Racing (2011, 2013); Team Penske (2012, 2014).
    · Three different manufacturers have won in the NSCS at Kentucky: Toyota (2011, 2013), Dodge (2012) and Ford (2014).
    · The 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky produced the most lead changes (20) at the 1.5-mile track. The fewest lead changes were in the 2013 race at Kentucky (11).
    · The 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky produced the most different leaders (12) at the 1.5-mile speedway. The fewest leaders in a NSCS event at Kentucky were last season’s race with three.
    · Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory (MOV) in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Kentucky Speedway was the July 9, 2011 race won by Kyle Busch over David Reutimann with a MOV of 0.179 second.
    · None of the four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Kentucky Speedway have resulted with a green-white-checkered finish.
    · None of the four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Kentucky Speedway have been shortened due to weather conditions.
    (NASCAR)(7-11-2015)
  • Bristol to hold fan day during test session July 29: Up to 12 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams are expected to test at Bristol Motor Speedway Wednesday, July 29, an event that the Speedway is making free to the public as part of the “It’s MY Bristol Baby!” campaign to express the Speedway’s appreciation to local fans and supporters. Bristol Motor Speedway Fan Day activities run 9:00am-5:00pm/et. Beginning at Noon, the Speedway will offer interactive displays and kids’ activities including show cars, mascot appearances, photo sharing, inflatables and face painting. Participating Sprint Cup drivers will be announced the week of July 27. Guests can enter the Speedway through the North or South entrances off Volunteer Parkway, and the stands via Gate 7.(BMS)(7-11-2015)
  • Kentucky honors Jeff Gordon…with bourbon: Kentucky Speedway, Speedway Motorsports Inc., Kentucky Distillers Association and four prominent Kentucky distillers presented a special “thank you” to NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Jeff Gordon, who is competing in his final full-time season. Four Roses, Jim Beam, Michter’s and Wild Turkey each gave the four-time Sprint Cup Series champion 24 bottles with each bottle featuring a special one-of-a-kind autographed label. Kentucky is internationally known for its bourbon whiskey producing 95 percent of the world’s supply. KDA gave Gordon a trunk full of glassware, barware and other gifts to enjoy his new collection and to remember his time in Kentucky, the one, true and authentic home for bourbon. The Master Distillers from each distiller were in attendance. If Gordon wins at Kentucky, he will be the first driver to win at every track on the current Sprint Cup Series schedule. He has finished in the top ten in each of the first four Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts races.(Kentucky Speedway)(7-11-2015)


    News from July 10, 2015


  • Final practice for the Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway is over after 95 minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #42-Larson 178.412
    #2-Keselowski 178.124
    #22-Logano 178.042
    #11-Hamlin 177.626
    #41-Busch 177.357
    slowest: #32-Kimmel 170.886 & #33-Kennedy 169.359.
    notes: #48-Johnson slid up into the outside wall after hitting he thought he hit a weeper. The team will repair the car. #20-Kenseth slid into the grass on the frontstretch and got stuck.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the Kentucky Practice 2 Speeds page (pdf).(7-10-2015)
  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway have been made.
    Pole sitter #42-Larson chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #2-Keselowski took pit stall 14, with an opening in front of it.
    #24-Gordon, who starts 3rd took the 31st pit stall, also with an opening in front of it.
    The 43rd and final pit stall was taken by #48-Johnson, who starts 6th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on Jayski.com’s Pit Stall Selection chart.(7-10-2015)
  • Qualifying: for the Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway was cancelled due to weather/rain. The starting lineup was set by the rules book: Top 36 in owners points. 37-43 by race attempts. Teams with the least number of attempts miss the race. The 43 cars are then set by practice speeds from the 1st practice session from Friday.
    #42-Larson will start first [not credited with a pole award] followed by #2-Keselowski, #24-Gordon, #22-Logano, #78-Truex, Jr., #48-Johnson, #1-McMurray, #11-Hamlin, #18-Busch, and #88-Earnhardt, Jr.
    Missing the race was: #21-Blaney, #95-McDowell & #30-Kvapil.
    See the starting lineup on Jayski.com’s Kentucky Starting Lineup Page.(7-10-2015)
  • Friday practice for the Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway is over, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #42-Larson 182.537
    #2-Keselowski 181.641
    #24-Gordon 180.373
    #22-Logano 180.102
    #78-Truex, Jr. 179.958
    slowest: #62-Sorenson 169.859 & #33-Kennedy 168.052.
    notes: Practice was cancelled after 49 minutes because of rain.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the Kentucky Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf).(7-10-2015)
  • Revised schedule for Friday: Due to the threat of rain at Kentucky Speedway, NASCAR will have a single practice session for Sprint Cup teams today. It will run from 10:35am-2:00pm/et, weather permitting. Qualifying is still scheduled for 5:45pm/et.(7-10-2015)
  • Qualifying Order for the Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway is posted. 45 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers lined up on pit road is #18-Busch
    The final driver lined up on pit road is #30-Kvapil.
    Pit road lineup order is set by a random draw, held about an hour before the first practice.
    See the full qualifying order on Jayski.com’s Kentucky Qualifying Page.(7-10-2015)

  • Keselowski “embarassed” about hitting Dillon at Daytona: #2-Brad Keselowski talks about his contact with #3-Austin Dillon at the end of the Daytona race:
    CAN YOU DESCRIBE WHAT YOU SAW THROUGH THE WHOLE ACCIDENT AT DAYTONA?
    Keselowski: “Kind of the sad part is I was honestly embarrassed that I hit Austin that long after the wreck. A bunch of people asked me questions about it, but there was just so much debris that even being as far behind as I was you couldn’t slow down from 200 miles an hour. That was frustrating. I felt very, very lucky when I got out of my car and went to Austin and saw that he was OK. I think those are really the thoughts that stick out to me the most. It’s just not a good deal.”
    DID YOU SEE THE WHOLE INCIDENT?
    Keselowski:
    “Yeah, I had a little more than probably I wish I would have had. It was a spectacle for sure.”
    YOU DON’T LIKE TALKING ABOUT IT, DO YOU?
    Keselowski: “It’s easy to get caught up on last week and forget the task ahead that’s this week. Whether it’s good or bad I try not to do that. The reality is that’s a restrictor plate race track. There are four of those races on the schedule and we’re through three of them. I still want to go to Talladega and win, but I’m not spending a lot of time thinking about a restrictor plate race. I’m thinking about this race for the reason stated earlier. This is a really big race for seeing who is gonna have what it takes to win the championship over the next few months when we get to crunch time. I’m ready. I’m thinking about that. I haven’t thought that much about Daytona.”(Ford Racing)(7-10-2015)
  • Daytona TV Ratings UPDATE: Rain-delayed NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Daytona drew a 2.6 overnight rating on NBC late Sunday night, up 8% from last year on TNT, when the race was postponed a full day due to rain (2.4). The race began at 11:15pm/et and ended after 2:00am. Earlier in the night, rain delay coverage earned a 2.1 overnight. The last time the Daytona race ended so late in the night was 2005, when NBC drew a much-higher 4.8 overnight from 10 PM-2 AM. The 2005 race, it should be noted, aired on a Saturday night – when it is presumably easier for viewers to stay up late. As one would expect, the race was dwarfed Sunday night by the FIFA Women’s World Cup Final on FOX (15.2). The two events never aired head-to-head, but the match undoubtedly stole much of the national attention away from the race.(Sports Media Watch), see race-by-race ratings, 5-year comparsion chart and more on the 2015 TV Ratings page.(7-6-2015)
    UPDATE: NBC’s return to NASCAR held up about as well as one could have expected. Rain delayed NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Daytona drew a 2.7 final rating and nearly 4.0 million viewers on NBC Sunday night, up 13% in ratings and virtually even in viewership compared to last year on TNT, when coverage was postponed a full day to Sunday afternoon (2.4, 4.0M). The 2013 race, which was run as scheduled on a Saturday night, drew a 3.5 and 5.7 million.(Sports Media Watch)(7-10-2015)

  • Two new sponsors for Bowyer at Kentucky: Casey’s General Store and Hughes General Contractors will co-sponsor Michael Waltrip Racing’s #15 Toyota driven by Clint Bowyer in Saturday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway. The race marks the first time the companies have served as primary sponsors on a Sprint Cup car. Casey’s is a Fortune 500 company with nearly 1,900 stores populating small towns throughout the Midwest including Kentucky, Tennessee and Arkansas. The Ankeny, Iowa, based chain offers customers gasoline, convenience store items and an assortment of food. It served more than 18 million made-from-scratch pizzas last year making it one of the top-10 pizza chains in the country. Hughes General Contractors, based in North Salt Lake, Utah, is a third-generation, family-owned commercial contractor that specializes in construction management projects. Hughes is an established forerunner in the art of tilt-up construction and concrete work, a nationally recognized expert in historical restoration, and an educational construction specialist.(Michael Waltrip Racing)(7-10-2015)

  • 100th start for Danica Patrick: #10-Danica Patrick will make her 100th career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start in Saturday’s Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts at Kentucky Speedway, becoming the first female to reach the milestone. Patrick’s six top-10 finishes are the most all-time among female drivers. She is also the only female driver to earn a NSCS Coors Light Pole Award (2013 Daytona 500). On the season, Patrick ranks 20th in the driver points standings. The #10 Stewart-Haas Racing driver is one of 16 female drivers who have competed in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.(NASCAR)(7-10-2015)

  • Kentucky Speedway Notes & Facts – Friday – poles:
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Qualifying at Kentucky was cancelled due to weather. The starting line-up was set per the Rule Book – Kyle Busch started from first.
    · Brad Keselowski (2014), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (2013) and Jimmie Johnson (2012) are the three drivers that have won Coors Light poles at Kentucky.
    · Brad Keselowski is the only driver to win a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky from the Coors Light poles (2014).
    · Kyle Busch won the inaugural NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky from the first starting position. Due to the qualifying session being cancelled for the 2011 race, it was not from the Coors Light pole.
    · Two of the four (50.0%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Kentucky have been won from the front row – both from the first starting position (2011, 2014).
    · Three of the four (75%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Kentucky have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    · The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Kentucky is 16th, by Matt Kenseth in 2013.
    · Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Kentucky Speedway once; the 2011 race.
    (NASCAR)(7-10-2015)
  • Keselowski wins XFINITY race at Kentucky: #22-Brad Keselowski won the Kentucky 300 at Kentucky Speedway, for his first XFINITY win of the season. It is Team Penske’s 50th NASCAR XFINITY Series win.
    #20-Erik Jones finished second, followed by #54-Kyle Busch, #18-Daniel Suarez, #1-Elliott Sadler, #33-Paul Menard, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #88-Dale Earnhardt, Jr., #62-Brendan Gaughan, and #7-Regan Smith.
    Pole sitter #28-J.J. Yeley finished 18th.
    There were 5 cautions for 24 laps and 10 lead changes among 6 leaders. The average speed was 136.054mph.
    Complete results are on the Kentucky race results page (pdf).
    (7-10-2015)
  • Kentucky XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Brad Keselowski won the 15th Annual Kentucky 300, his 33rd victory in 220 NASCAR XFINITY Series races. He ranks fifth on the all-time series wins list.
    This is his first victory and fourth top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his third victory and eighth top-10 finish in eight races at Kentucky Speedway. Overall, Keselowski has five wins at Kentucky. He also has two victories in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
    Erik Jones (second) posted his first top-10 finish in one races at Kentucky Speedway. It is his 10th top-10 finish in 2015.
    Kyle Busch (third) posted his sixth top-10 finish in eight races at Kentucky Speedway.
    Daniel Suarez (fourth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Chris Buescher leads the point standings by 36 points over Chase Elliott.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-10-2015)
  • XFINITY Driver standings following Kentucky:
    1) #6-Chris Buescher, 593
    2) #9-Chase Elliott, 557, -36
    3) #3-Ty Dillon, 547, -46
    4) #1-Elliott Sadler, 528, -65
    5) #7-Regan Smith, 527, -66
    6) #6-Darrell Wallace Jr., 510, -83
    7) #2-Brian Scott, 478, -115
    8) #18-Daniel Suarez, 477, -116
    9) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 473, -120
    10) #16-Ryan Reed, 471, -122
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(7-10-2015)

  • Matt Wallace to make XFINITY debut at New Hampshire: Mike Wallace announced on his Facebook page: “Move things up a couple of weeks for Matt Wallace. He was going to make his first NASCAR Xfinity series start on Aug 1, at Iowa Speedway. But after his great run last Saturday night in his Super Late Model finishing second at I-44 Speedway. JGL Racing team car #26 owners called and asked Matt to start at New Hampshire next week July 18th along with his scheduled Aug 1st, start at Iowa Speedway and slid into the middle of that he will race in the ARCA Racing July 24th, at LUCAS OIL SPEEDWAY (IRP) Driving for Kimmel Racing car #69, he will have a in car camera for that race live on Fox Sports 1.(7-10-2015)

  • NASCAR shortens Truck race after catchfence damage: In a race that ended five laps short of its scheduled distance, polesitter Matt Crafton was declared the winner of Thursday night’s UNOH 225 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event after Ben Kennedy’s Toyota damaged the catchfence at Kentucky Speedway beyond the track’s capacity to repair it expeditiously. With a shove from the Ford of Ryan Blaney, Crafton had taken the lead from eventual runner-up Erik Jones on Lap 145 moments before Kennedy was launched into the fence from contact with David Gilliland’s Ford.
    “I thought I was clear,” Kennedy said on his radio. The driver of the #11 Tundra had moved up the track into Gilliland’s Ford after being cleared by his spotter. “I heard ‘Clear’ on the radio, so I moved up to the wall and as soon as I went to the wall,” Kennedy said after leaving the infield care center. “I guess Gilliland had a run on the outside and pretty much hit me in the right rear – and I went up. I guess I was on top of the wall. I remember being on top of the wall for quite some time. I didn’t see much – just a bunch of dust and debris flying. Then came down. The ride from the wall to the ground was pretty hard. But I’m OK. Thank God for everything that NASCAR has done to keep this sport safe. ‘Cause for me to get out of my car on my own power after a hit like that is pretty incredible.”
    Two support poles in the catchfence had to be replaced, a process that would consume 90 minutes. Accordingly, NASCAR called the race with five laps left.(NASCAR Wire Service)(7-10-2015)


    News from July 9, 2015


  • Teams to test new rules package at Kentucky Wednesday: UPDATES: NASCAR will take a reduced downforce package to Kentucky Speedway this week, and it appears many in the industry have high hopes. They have high hopes for the potential of the package. They’re just not sure that they’ll see the results at Kentucky. Finding the right rules to encourage side-by-side racing and lead changes — in other words, reducing the dreaded “aero push” — has resulted in NASCAR taking the unconventional step of experimenting with a different aerodynamic package this week at the 1.5-mile Kentucky oval. Drivers are unsure what to expect this weekend. They’ll start to find out Wednesday as the testing at Kentucky begins. Three days after the test, NASCAR will have its first real test — a race that counts just as any of the others on the calendar. The teams will have four hours of practice Wednesday afternoon and evening. Teams can use either their primary or backup cars for the race weekend — which begins Friday — during the test and they can have data acquisition systems on the car. They will be allowed to change engines prior to practice Friday morning. Teams have been told to have all the regular 2014 rules package components with them for the race weekend in case NASCAR opts to revert to the package used previously. But after all the hype about the reduced downforce package, the test would have to go horribly wrong Wednesday. Teams will use a 3.5-inch spoiler instead of a 6-inch spoiler. The splitter will have 1.75 inches less overhang. The radiator pan has been reduced from 38 inches to 25 inches. The entire package could reduce downforce by 25 percent in the cars, which currently produce approximately 3,200 pounds of downforce.(ESPN.com) The test sessions are scheduled for 3:00-5:00pm/et and 6:00-8:00pm/et. Any reported speeds will be posted. Fans can watch for free by entering the track at gate 15.(7-8-2015)
    UPDATE: Rain at Kentucky Speedway forced the cancellation of Wednesday’s test sessions. NASCAR will now have a single session on Thursday from 11:00am – 1:00pm/et.(7-8-2015)
    UPDATE 2: More rain at the track Thursday morning caused NASCAR to cancel Sprint Cup testing. Teams will still run the new rules package this weekend for the Quaker State 400.(7-9-2015)

  • DiBenedetto gets new sponsor for Kentucky: BK Racing has partnered with Anest Iwata as a primary sponsor on Matt DiBenedetto’s #83 Toyota at Kentucky Speedway this weekend. Anest Iwata USA, is the North American Spray Equipment Headquarters for the Anest Iwata Corporation of Yokohama, Japan. Besides being the leading producer of spray guns in the world, Anest Iwata specializes in painting equipment, turnkey coating systems, air compressors and high-end dry vacuum pumps. In addition to being a primary sponsor this weekend, Anest Iwata joins BK Racing as an associate sponsor for the remainder of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.(BK Racing), see an image of the car on the #83 team paint schemes page)(7-9-2015)

  • Harvick can become first driver to officially clinch Chase spot: Nine races remain until the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Chances for spots in NASCAR’s playoffs are dwindling, and a number of big names are still looking for their first win of 2015, including Kasey Kahne, Jeff Gordon, Ryan Newman, Aric Almirola, Greg Biffle and AJ Allmendinger, all of whom made last year’s Chase. This weekend, Kevin Harvick can clinch a top 30 spot. That, combined with his multiple wins which guarantees him to be among the top 16 winners, will officially clinch a spot in the Chase, assuming he starts the remaining races in the regular season. With a 48-point victory, Dale Earnhardt Jr. could also clinch, but would need lots of help to clinch a top 30 spot.(NASCAR)(7-9-2015)

  • Open test at Chicago next week: On Wednesday, July 15, select drivers will participate in a NASCAR open test at Chicagoland Speedway. Drivers scheduled to participate include: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #42-Kyle Larson, #16-Greg Biffle, #9-Sam Hornish Jr., #11-Denny Hamlin, #21-Ryan Blaney, #23-JJ Yeley, #3-Austin Dillon, #78-Martin Truex Jr., #41-Kurt Busch, #15-Clint Bowyer, #51-Justin Allgaier and #2-TBD. The test will be open to all fans who have a September Chicagoland Sprint Cup race ticket. Gate 4 opesn at 1:30pm/ct for parking. The CLS Legends Club Suites will be open 2:00-5:00pm local time. The test is subject to change due to weather or other circumstances.(Chicagoland Speedway)(7-9-2015)

  • Moving Daytona summer race to morning not under consideration: Don’t count on NASCAR moving the start of the July Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway back to the morning, a series official says. Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, said this week on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that “I wouldn’t look to us to go back to a morning race” at Daytona in July. The event, formerly known as the Firecracker 400, started at 10 or 11 am on July 4 to avoid the afternoon heat and showers. It was moved off the July 4 holiday to a Saturday afternoon start in 1988. The event has been run at night since 1998. “I don’t think so,” O’Donnell said. “I think the sport is so big now and there are so many partners that are involved. I know it might be easier to look at an 11 a.m. start. It’s our job to look at all factors to grow the sport as much as we can and make it as fan friendly as possible.”(NBCSports)(7-9-2015)
  • Daytona Race and Commercial Breakdown of the Coke Zero 400 (Rain Delayed): For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday’s race (that finished in the early hours of Monday). Began recording the times at 11:18 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 2:41 AM (all times are EDT). Did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. NBC was the broadcast team for this event.
    Total number of commercials: 96
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 55
    Number of times NBC utilized ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during this broadcast: 5
    Number of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 72
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 44
    Number of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials during race broadcast (split-screen): 24
    Total number of companies or entities advertised: 23
    Total number of brief promos of products/services during the race broadcast (including company logos ‘floating’ in corners of the screen): 64
    Total amount of time these brief promos take during broadcast: app. 3 min. 55 sec.
    Start time to record race/commercial periods: 11:18 PM
    End time to record race/commercial periods: 2:41 AM
    Total minutes of complete race broadcast: 203
    Minutes of race broadcast: 168
    Minutes of traditional commercials (not split-screen): 35
    Minutes of ‘Side-by-Side’ commercials (split-screen): 12
    Total race brdcst time 168 Total comm. brdcst time 35
    See full reports, sponsor links, much more details at CawsnJaws.com.(7-9-2015)
  • Kentucky Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in all three NASCAR series will run the same Goodyear tire codes this week . . . this combination of left- and right-side tires is different than what was run at Kentucky last season . . . in 2014, Sprint Cup teams ran a different left-side than Xfinity and Camping World Truck teams at this track . . . In Sprint Cup, this left-side (D-4392) features compound, construction and mold shape changes; while this right-side (D-4646) features the same compound with a construction change . . . these changes bring this tire set-up in line with what is run at other speedways and will enhance grip . . . in Xfinity and Camping World Truck, the compounds remain the same on both sides of the car, there are construction and mold shape changes on the left-side and just a construction change on the right-side . . . the Xfinity and Truck changes also bring this tire set-up into line with what is run at similar tracks and will give the cars/trucks more grip . . . teams are very familiar with this left-side tire code, having run it at Texas, Dover and Chicagoland (Xfinity only) already this season, as well as many other times over the past several seasons . . . this is a new right-side tire code . . . this tire set-up came out of a Goodyear test at Kentucky on April 13-14 . . . .drivers participating in that test were Greg Biffle, Jamie McMurray, Brett Moffitt and Ryan Newman . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners in all four tire positions at Kentucky . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.(Goodyear), see full notes, tire codes, tire pressures, set limits and more on the Kentucky Race Info page – Goodyear section.

  • Kentucky Speedway Notes & Facts – Thursday – drivers:
    · 60 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway; 45 in more than one.
    · 28 different drivers have made all four series starts at Kentucky Speedway.
    · Brad Keselowski leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in Average Starting Position at Kentucky with a 5.75; followed by Kyle Busch with a 6.25.
    · Three different NSCS drivers have won at Kentucky Speedway: Kyle Busch (07/09/2011), Brad Keselowski (06/30/2012 and 6/28/2014) and Matt Kenseth (6/30/2013).
    · Brad Keselowski leads the series in wins at Kentucky with two.
    · Four different drivers have posted NSCS runner-up finishes at Kentucky: David Reutimann (2011), Kasey Kahne (2012), Jamie McMurray (2013) and Kyle Busch (2014).
    · 14 different drivers have posted top-five finishes at Kentucky led by Kyle Busch with three; followed by Brad Keselowski, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Matt Kenseth, and Ryan Newman with two each.
    · 19 different drivers have posted top-10 finishes at Kentucky led by Kyle Busch, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth with four each.
    · Matt Kenseth and Kyle Busch are tied for the series among active drivers in Average Finishing Position at Kentucky with a 4.5 each. Jimmie Johnson (7.0), Jeff Gordon (7.2), and Kasey Kahne (8.5) are the other active drivers with an average finish in the top 10.
    · Brad Keselowski leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in laps led at Kentucky with 346 laps led in four starts.
    · Danica Patrick is the only female driver to compete in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Kentucky Speedway.
    (NASCAR)(7-9-2015)
  • Yeley fastest in XFINITY practice: #28-J.J. Yeley was fastest during the only XFINITY practice at Kentucky Speedway with a speed of 174.967mph.#3-Ty Dillon was second, followed by:#62-Brendan Gaughan, #22-Brad Keselowski, #27-Paul Menard, #54-Kyle Busch, #20-Erik Jones, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #2-Brian Scott, and #18-Daniel Suarez. All 40 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Kentucky practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(7-9-2014)
  • Crafton wins at Kentucky: #88-Matt Crafton won the UNOH225 at the Kentucky Speedway on Thursday night after the race was called five laps from the finish. #4-Erik Jones finished second followed by: #29-Ryan Blaney, #51-Daniel Suarez, #17-Timothy Peters, #19-Tyler Reddick, #92-David Gilliland, #05-John Wes Townley, #13-Cameron Hayley, and #33-Brandon Jones.
    #88-Crafton took the lead from #4-Jones prior to the final yellow flag being displayed. With just five laps remaining in the originally scheduled 150-lap race, the #11-Ben Kennedy truck made contact in turn 1, damaging the catchfence. NASCAR made the decision to shorten the race due to the severity of the damage and the amount of time the repairs would take.
    There were 8 caution flags for 30 laps and 13 lead changes among 7 leaders. The field also saw two red flag periods in the closing laps, before the race was subsequently shortened.
    Complete results are on the Kentucky race results page (pdf). (7-9-2015)
  • Kentucky Race Fast Facts:
    Matt Crafton won the 5th Annual UNOH 225, his ninth victory in 348 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
    This is his fourth victory and ninth top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his first victory and 12th top-10 finish in 17 races at Kentucky Speedway.
    Erik Jones (second) posted his first top-10 finish in one races at Kentucky Speedway. It is his seventh top-10 finish in 2015.
    Ryan Blaney (third) posted his third top-10 finish in four races at Kentucky Speedway.
    Matt Crafton leads the point standings by 20 points over Tyler Reddick.
    (NASCAR Statistics) (7-9-2015)
  • Driver standings following Kentucky:
    1) #88-Matt Crafton, 417
    2) #19-Tyler Reddick, 397, -20
    3) #4-Erik Jones #, 388, -29
    4) #98-Johnny Sauter, 359, -58
    5) #05-John Wes Townley, 330, -87
    6) #17-Timothy Peters, 322, -95
    7) #13-Cameron Hayley, 315, -102
    8) #23-Spencer Gallagher #, 308, -109
    9) #14-Daniel Hemric #, 308, -109
    10) #11-Ben Kennedy, 297, 120
    See complete standings on the driver standings page (pdf).(7-9-2015)
  • Owner Standings following Iowa: are posted (pdf).(7-9-2015)
  • Crafton on pole at Kentucky: Rain canceled both practice and qualifying on Thursday at Kentucky Speedway, forcing NASCAR to set the UNOH 225 field based on the 2015 rulebook. #88-Matt Crafton will start from the pole position. #19-Tyler Reddick, #4-Erik Jones, #51-Daniel Suarez, #98-Johnny Sauter, #29-Ryan Blaney, #05-John Wes Townley, #23-Spencer Gallagher, #33-Brandon Jones, #17-Timothy Peters are the top-10 starters. See complete lineup on the Kentucky starting lineup page (pdf). (7-9-2015)

  • Bell to run fourth KBM truck in Kentucky UPDATE 3: Kyle Busch confirmed Saturday at Daytona International Speedway that his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team, Kyle Busch Motorsports will run four trucks next Thursday night at Kentucky Speedway. Twenty-year-old Christopher Bell, who wowed in his Truck Series debut finishing fifth after starting 10th at Iowa Speedway last month, will drive the #52 Toyota Tundra in the UNOH 225. As of now, Busch says Wes Ward is scheduled to serve as crew chief.(Catchfence.com)(7-4-2015)
    UPDATE: Bell will drive the #54 at Kentucky with crew chief Shannon Rursch, in place of Justin Boston. Boston was listed on the preliminary entry list, while Bell, who was said to drive the #52, was absent. The team announced the change on Wednesday, via their Kentucky race advance. No further information was provided regarding Boston, who is 12th in driver standings with four top-10s and three DNFs.(Kyle Busch Motorsports)(7-8-2015)
    UPDATE 2: The marriage between Kyle Busch Motorsports and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series rookie Justin Boston is over after nine races. Boston, a native of Baltimore, Maryland won’t drive the team’s #54 Toyota in Thursday night’s UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway and the former ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards Rookie of the Year has no plans to seek a ride for the 10th race of the season either. “I don’t think it’s a matter of why to leave or not,” said Boston of the recent decision made. “It really comes down to what is best for my career as well as what is best for my sponsors. I would love nothing more than to keep driving for KBM, but it’s no secret our performance had been lacking compared to the other KBM teams. It just didn’t work out.” Approaching the halfway point of his rookie season, Boston who sits 12th in the championship standings wasn’t happy with his performance on the track and swayed for some internal changes on his #54 ROK Mobile Toyota team, but when those requests were not met, they mutually agreed to part ways. “Changes needed to be made, and weren’t,” Boston added. “I really do wish all the best for everyone I worked with at KBM. It just boiled down to what was best for me and what was best to keep my sponsors happy.”(Catchfence.com)(7-8-2015)
    UPDATE 3: The Camping World Truck Series garage area will be missing a familiar face this weekend after Kyle Busch Motorsports has parted with Justin Boston. After nine races this season, Boston had earned four top-10 finishes and sat 12th in the points entering Kentucky. “Zloop breached its agreement with Kyle Busch Motorsports and failed to cure, forcing Kyle Busch Motorsports to terminate the agreement,” the team said in a statement. “Notwithstanding this disappointing turn of events, the Kyle Busch Motorsports  54 Toyota Tundra will continue to compete for the remainder of the year.”(PopularSpeed.com)(7-9-2015)
  • Martel planning Pocono return: Bill Martel Racing is planning to burn up Pocono Raceway with both tires and sneakers at summer’s hottest race. BMR has committed to racing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono Mountains 150 on August 1st, then walking the famed “Tricky Triangle” for charity. Kyle Martel returns to Long Pond to give Central Pennsylvania fans the opportunity to see one of its own – compete against some of the best in NASCAR. Martel will drive the white BMR Chevy Silverado #59 sponsored in part by Hanover Cold Storage, Finish Line Express and Finish Line Transportation. This will be the team’s second race of 2015. Fans interested in “Go Pink @ Pocono 4” must pre-register at the Bill Martel Racing Tent located at the Start/Finish Line under the Main Grandstand on Friday, July 31st from NOON to 3:00 p.m. and Saturday, August 1st from 8:00 a.m. until walk. The donation to walk is $10.00 per person & $5.00 for kids 2 to 8. (under 2 free.) A $20.00 donation includes the walk and commemorative tee-shirt, while supplies last. All walkers must sign a waiver and no pets.(Bill Martel Racing)(7-9-2015)
  • Rain delays activity in Kentucky: Thursday morning’s opening practice for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series has been delayed at Kentucky Speedway. Practice was scheduled from 8 to 10:55 a.m. ET on the 1.5-mile track in preparation for Thursday night’s UNOH 225 (7:30 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1), the 10th of 23 races this season. A damp track and an assortment of “weepers” — water creeping up through the asphalt — wiped out Wednesday’s on-track activity, an extended practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series’ revised rules package. That practice was condensed and rescheduled for 11 a.m.-12:55 p.m. ET Thursday. A fleet of 10 NASCAR Air Titan track-drying vehicles are on site at Kentucky to combat the wet weather.(NASCAR.com)(7-9-2015)
  • Entry list: There are 34 trucks on the preliminary entry list for Thursday’s UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway. A few notes:
    Cody Coughlin will debut in the #25;
    Ryan Blaney returns to the #29;
    The #36 is TBA;
    Daniel Suarez is in the #51;
    Christopher Bell is not listed primarily, but expected in the #52 for KBM;
    Caleb Holman is in the #75;
    Brandon Brown is in the #86;
    David Gilliland is in the #92;
    (7-4-2015)
    UPDATE: Bell will drive the #54 in place of Justin Boston; the 52 will not be entered;
    (7-8-2015)
    UPDATE 2: The 03 and 36 trucks have withdrawn. bringing the total to 31;
    (7-9-2015)
    See the complete list on the Kentucky entry list page.


    News from July 8, 2015


  • Jeff Gordon Day and Parade to be held in Pittsboro, IN UPDATE: Jeff Gordon, a four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion and five-time winner at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, will have a day and parade in his honor on Thursday, July 9, in Pittsboro, Indiana. Gordon is wrapping up his final full season behind the wheel and visiting on his “Victory Tour” in advance of a final appearance on July 26 at the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard. When Gordon was 14 years old, he and his family relocated to Pittsboro to further Gordon’s racing career. The driver went on to superstardom and members of the Pittsboro community continue to follow their hero in the #24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet. In conjunction with the town of Pittsboro, IMS is staging a parade in Gordon’s honor on Jeff Gordon Day (as designated by the town) at noon on Main Street. Fans are encouraged to line the parade route. A merchandise trailer stocked with Gordon items will be on site.(IMS)(7-4-2015)
    UPDATE: Due to weather in Kentucky and the rescheduling of a NASCAR test session, Jeff Gordon Day and Parade scheduled for Thursday, July 9, in Pittsboro, Indiana, has been rescheduled for Thursday, July 23, at noon.(Indianapolis Motor Speedway)(7-8-2015)

  • Teams to test new rules package at Kentucky Wednesday: NASCAR will take a reduced downforce package to Kentucky Speedway this week, and it appears many in the industry have high hopes. They have high hopes for the potential of the package. They’re just not sure that they’ll see the results at Kentucky. Finding the right rules to encourage side-by-side racing and lead changes — in other words, reducing the dreaded “aero push” — has resulted in NASCAR taking the unconventional step of experimenting with a different aerodynamic package this week at the 1.5-mile Kentucky oval. Drivers are unsure what to expect this weekend. They’ll start to find out Wednesday as the testing at Kentucky begins. Three days after the test, NASCAR will have its first real test — a race that counts just as any of the others on the calendar. The teams will have four hours of practice Wednesday afternoon and evening. Teams can use either their primary or backup cars for the race weekend — which begins Friday — during the test and they can have data acquisition systems on the car. They will be allowed to change engines prior to practice Friday morning. Teams have been told to have all the regular 2014 rules package components with them for the race weekend in case NASCAR opts to revert to the package used previously. But after all the hype about the reduced downforce package, the test would have to go horribly wrong Wednesday. Teams will use a 3.5-inch spoiler instead of a 6-inch spoiler. The splitter will have 1.75 inches less overhang. The radiator pan has been reduced from 38 inches to 25 inches. The entire package could reduce downforce by 25 percent in the cars, which currently produce approximately 3,200 pounds of downforce.(ESPN.com) The test sessions are scheduled for 3:00-5:00pm/et and 6:00-8:00pm/et. Any reported speeds will be posted. Fans can watch for free by entering the track at gate 15.(7-8-2015)

  • Fans hit by debris at Daytona hire lawyer: Two people hit by debris during the last-lap crash at the Coke Zero 400 have hired an attorney to represent them in any claims against NASCAR and Daytona International Speedway. Matt Morgan confirmed Tuesday he was hired by the spectators, who were among the four treated and released at the racetrack after Austin Dillon’s car flew into the catch fence and was torn into pieces. “I have been retained by two individuals who were sitting three rows up from the point of impact at the Daytona Coke Zero 400 crash,” Morgan said. “They were struck by a large piece of steel debris and various smaller objects. They were treated for their injuries in Daytona and are following up at their local hospital.” Morgan, whose firm Morgan & Morgan is based in Orlando, Florida, and is well-known for its representation of accident victims, represented 13 victims of the Kyle Larson crash in the 2013 Xfinity Series opener at Daytona and reached settlements in those cases in May 2014. Since then, Morgan has been retained by an additional spectator, and no settlement has been reached.(ESPN.com)(7-8-2015)

  • Special paint scheme elements to continue for Chase Contenders: Teams who make the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup will sport a special paint scheme for the second consecutive season. The teams provided feedback after the inaugural season with the new look and NASCAR has made adjustments based on those suggestions. Along with a Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup logo and rounds (Challenger, Contender, Eliminator or Championship), taking the place of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series logo and NASCAR racecar decal, cars eligible for NASCAR’s playoffs will be highlighted in Chase yellow. The windshield header, front valance and — new for 2015 — rear spoiler of each of the cars will carry the color. In 2014, the roof number was Sprint yellow as well, but the teams will keep their regular paint scheme atop their cars. Chase-eligible drivers also will receive a unique Winner decal for each win they accumulate during the Chase rounds.(NASCAR)(7-8-2015)

  • Seaason-high penalties at Daytona: There were a season-high 65 penalties doled out during Sunday night’s Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway, with the majority (35) for pitting before pit road was open. That infraction isn’t unusual when multi-car crashes leave plenty of cars with damaged sheet metal, which definitely was the case at Daytona. The overall total eclipsed the previous high mark of 43 set earlier this year at Martinsville Speedway.(NASCAR.com)(7-8-2015)

  • Will Kimmel to make Sprint Cup debut: As Go Green Racing and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series head to the bluegrass state and Kentucky Speedway, it will mark many firsts. Saturday night’s event will feature 27-year-old Will Kimmel behind the wheel of the #32 Ford Fusion for owner Archie St.Hilaire. Furthermore, this will mark the Sellersburg, IN native’s first career NSCS start. Lastly, this weekend’s event will feature the new “Aero Package” that all NSCS teams will utilize in Saturday nights race. Kimmel has some familiarity with the rough & bumpy 1.5 mile Kentucky Speedway and Go Green Racing. In 2011 Kimmel made his first career NASCAR Xfinity Series start driving for GGR and Archie St.Hilare where he started 15th. In 2010, Kimmel made his only NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start where he finished 21st. In two ARCA Racing Series Starts, Kimmel has an average start of 5.5, and an average finish of 6.5. During this weekend’s Quaker State 400 Visone RV & CorvetteParts.Net will partner with Will Kimmel and the Go Green Racing team. Visone RV is based out of nearby East Bernstadt, Kentucky while CorvetteParts.Net is based out nearby Cleves, Ohio. Both Visone RV & CorvetteParts.Net call the Kentucky Speedway their home track.(GoGreen Racing)(7-8-2015)

  • Speed Perks sponsoring Hornish at Kentucky: Speed Perks, Advance Auto Parts’ customer loyalty program, will serve as the primary sponsor for Sam Hornish Jr. and the #9 Ford Fusion at the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at Kentucky Speedway this weekend. Speed Perks offers loyal customers the opportunity to earn rebates and special incentives from their in-store purchases. As customer loyalty programs become a widespread practice for retailers, NASCAR provides the perfect outlet for advertising Speed Perks. Research shows that NASCAR fans are 24% more likely to shop at an automotive specialty retailer than non-fans. NASCAR fans are also 24% more likely to change their motor oil on their own than non-fans. An avid car guy himself, Hornish is looking forward to representing Speed Perks in Kentucky.(Richard Petty Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #9 team paint schemes page.(7-8-2015)

  • Minions Movie on the #19 at Kentucky: Carl Edwards and the #19 team will be sporting a very unique paint scheme for the Saturday night race at Kentucky Speedway this weekend. The Minions will be on the #19 Toyota and head to Kentucky with Edwards for the fifth running of the Quaker State 400. Since the dawn of time, the Minions have lived to serve the most despicable of masters. Now, join Kevin, Stuart and Bob as they head out on a thrilling new journey to find their next evil leader. Don’t miss the prequel to the blockbuster Despicable Me series, Illumination Entertainment and Universal Pictures’ Minions, starring Sandra Bullock and Jon Hamm. Only in theaters July 10.(Joe Gibbs Racing), see an image of the car on the #19 team paint schemes page.(7-8-2015)

  • Styrofoam Brand Insulation on the #3: There is no such thing as a Styrofoam cup. Styrofoam Brand Insulation is used in walls, roofs, and foundations for commercial and residential construction in more than 20 million buildings worldwide. Austin Dillon will drive the #3 Dow STYROFOAM Chevy for the first time at Kentucky Speedway on July 10. Dow enters its second season with RCR and driver Austin Dillon. Together, both teams embrace the power of science, technology and safety as RCR tests Dow products under the most strenuous conditions. Dow also drives innovation to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems, bringing a broad range of sustainable products and solutions to customers in nearly 180 countries with more than 6,000 products manufactured across the globe.(RCR)see an image of the car on the #3 team paint schemes page.(7-8-2015)

  • Talladega plans no changes to fencing before fall race: Talladega Superspeedway track president Grant Lynch told USA TODAY Sports he doesn’t foresee changes to the fencing or fan seating before NASCAR returns Oct. 24-25. The Sprint Cup race there will carry even more weight for some drivers than Sunday night’s Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway, where Austin Dillon’s car sailed into the catchfence during a multi-car crash triggered as the congested blob of cars going about 200 mph careened past the start/finish line during a green-white-checker finish. At Talladega, any driver in the Chase for the Sprint Cup playoff will be racing to advance to the round of eight. Four more competitors will be excused from the postseason field and a chance at the championship after the Talladega results are posted. Lynch said he believes the first row of fan seating is about 22 feet from the catchfence. Some seating rows were removed – forcing fans back – after the Kyle Larson wreck at Daytona in 2013 injured more than two dozen fans. Spectators used to be about 16-18 feet from the fencing, according to Lynch. “We were looking at it after the Nationwide wreck at Daytona. That’s when we made some changes,” Lynch said. Lynch also said they won’t consider moving out more rows of seating before October. “I think we’re back to the distance recommended.”(USA Today)(7-8-2015)

  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Kentucky
    #18-Kyle Busch 124.3
    #48-Jimmie Johnson 116.6
    #2-Brad Keselowski 116.1
    #20-Matt Kenseth 107.2
    #5-Kasey Kahne 98.9
    #24-Jeff Gordon 95.4
    #4-Kevin Harvick 95.2
    #22-Joey Logano 94.7
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. 90.7
    #31-Ryan Newman 90.2
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2011-2014 races (4 total) among active drivers at Kentucky Speedway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)

  • Kentucky Speedway Notes & Facts – Wednesday – history:
    · In 1998, the track broke ground in Sparta, Kentucky, and opened as a 1.5-mile speedway in 2000.
    · The original owners, Jerry Carroll and four other investors owned the track until 2008, when current owners, Speedway Motorsports Inc. purchased the facility.
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race was held in 2011 – won by Kyle Busch.
    (NASCAR)(7-8-2015)
  • Daytona TV Ratings: NASCAR Xfinity Series racing from Daytona earned 1.6 million viewers on NBCSN Saturday night, down 11% from last year on ESPN2, which also aired July 4 (1.8M), and down 19% from 2013 on ESPN (1.9M). The race ranks as the third-most watched Xfinity telecast on cable this season (11 telecasts).(Sports Media Watch)(7-8-2015)
  • Bulletproof Energy returns to the #70: Derrike Cope Racing is ‘energized’ to announce our partnership with Bulletproof Energy Drinks for our upcoming race at the Kentucky Speedway as our primary sponsor for the second race this season. Bulletproof Energy provides healthy energy without the use of additives or artificial ingredients and is made with real sugar, unlike it’s competitors. Available in regular or sugar free, Bulletproof Energy Drinks not only provide great tasting energy at a great price, but also supports wounded troops by donating five cents of every can sold to Fisher House, a nonprofit organization that benefits wounded troops and military personnel. Sold in retailers in Northern California and Nevada Bulletproof is also available for purchase online. Fanvision will also be on board as an associate sponsor on the #70 through the Homestead event.(Derrike Cope Racing)(7-8-2015)
  • MAKE swaps teams: The #1 Burnie Grill Chevy will unload a chassis named “Petunia” as all of MAKE’s Chassis are named after pigs. Petunia was last seen on track at Iowa Speedway as the #50 driven by Travis Kvapil. This week the Burnie Grill Chevy will be sporting the #1 as part of an in house team swap. Ryan Ellis will be in the #50.(MAKE Motorsports)(7-8-2015)

  • Pierce to drive for MB at Eldora UPDATE 2: Dirt Late Model racer Bobby Pierce will make his series debut on the dirt track at Eldora Speedway in July with MB Motorsports. 18-year-old Pierce is no stranger to the Ohio track. He led every lap at Eldora last year in the DIRTcar Fall Nationals en route to the DIRTcar Late Model championship.(STL Motorsport Magazine)(5-26-2015)
    UPDATE: It’s hard to believe, but 16-year-old Jake Griffin and 18-year-old Bobby Pierce have raced each other hundreds of times on dirt tracks across America’s Heartland. On Wednesday, July 22nd these two young men will once again go into action on the dirt, but this time it will be on a much bigger stage- and as teammates. The pair of talented young drivers will look to catch the eyes of the racing world, when they pilot a pair of MB Motorsports Chevy Silverados in the 1-800-Car-Cash Mud Summer Classic at Eldora Speedway (Rossburg, Ohio) in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Pierce, who was the 2014 DIRTCar National Late Model champion, has made a handful of pavement starts over the past few seasons. This event, however, will mark his first NCWTS start. MB Motorsports is the sole surviving original team in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Their history with the tour dates back to the inaugural season in 1995.(MB Motorsports)(6-23-2015)
    UPDATE 2: Pierce’s team will combine with MB Motorsports to drive the team’s #63 in the Camping World Truck Series race at Eldora Speedway in Eldora, Ohio on July 22. MB Motorsports and owner Mike Mittler has compete in every season since the series started in 1995 and have helped Sprint Cup racers like Carl Edwards, Jamie McMurray, Justin Allgaier and Brad Keselowski. The local flavor will continue in the pit box as crew chief and Danville native Rick Ren will call the shots. Ren won two truck titles in 2007 and 2009 as chief for Ron Hornaday, Jr. and has worked races for Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch and Darrell Wallace, Jr.(Commercial News)(7-8-2015)


    News from July 7, 2015


  • Buddy Baker has lung cancer; retiring from SiriusXM: Buddy Baker, whose storytelling and friendly demeanor made him a fan favorite, announced Tuesday night that a “huge tumor” in his lung is inoperable and he is leaving his role as a co-host of SirusXM NASCAR Radio, effective immediately. “For those who feel sorry, hey I’m 74 years old, have great friends, had a career,” he said on “The Late Shift” on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “The toughest part for me is not being able to talk to some of our regulars that are almost like family. “There comes a time when you talk to the doctor and say what are my chances and there’s a dead silence. I went how long. ‘Well, we don’t own the hotel, we don’t know when we check out. It’s something that we cannot fix.” Baker then added: “Do not shed a tear. Give a smile when you say my name.” The 74-year-old Baker won 19 races in what is now the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, including the 1980 Daytona 500. He made his series debut in 1959 and ran his final Cup race in 1992. The son of NASCAR Hall of Famer Buck Baker, the 6-foot-6 Baker was known as the “Gentle Giant” during his racing days. That same friendly style endeared him to fans when he worked on television after retiring. He served as a broadcaster for TNN and CBS. He started with SiriusXM NASCAR Radio in 2007.(NBCSports)(7-7-2015)

  • New rule changes announced for several tracks: A low downforce rules package similar to that scheduled for use by NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams this weekend at Kentucky Speedway will be run in September at Darlington Raceway, according to Steve O’Donnell, Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer for the sanctioning body. In addition, teams will compete with a higher drag rules package at both Indianapolis Motor Speedway later this month as well as Michigan International Speedway in August and Richmond International Raceway. This weekend’s Kentucky aero package features a shorter spoiler (reduced from 6 inches to 3-1/2 inches) and a splitter extension panel (radiator pan) reduction from 38 inches to 25 inches. The splitter will have 1-3/4 inches less overhang that what has previously been used this season. Combined, the aero changes are expected to lessen the amount of downforce on the cars by approximately 1,000 pounds.
    While the Darlington setup will be similar to that slated for this weekend’s Quaker State 400, there are differences. The spoiler will be 3-1/2 (instead of 3 inches) inches and the splitter will feature a 1/4-inch leading edge. There is no change in the size of the splitter extension panel (25 inches).
    Although the tires used this weekend at Kentucky were not tested at the 1.5-mile track with the lower downforce platform during an April tire test, Goodyear officials were able to determine a tire for the Darlington package during a one-day test last week with drivers #14-Tony Stewart (Stewart-Haas Racing), #20-Matt Kenseth (Joe Gibbs Racing) and #2-Brad Keselowski (Team Penske).
    For Indy and Michigan, the aero package will feature a 9-inch spoiler and 1-inch wicker bill; a rear fascia extension panel similar to that currently used for superspeedway events; a 2-inch leading edge on the splitter; and a 43-inch splitter extension panel.
    Richmond will use a new tire. There are no scheduled aero changes for the upcoming race at Richmond International Raceway, the final race before the start of this year’s Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, however Goodyear will not return with a multi-zone tread compound tire that had been used there recently. The changes are not currently scheduled for use at any tracks hosting Chase races.(NASCAR.com)(7-7-2013)

  • NASCAR will not penalize crew members that ran to Dillon’s car: NASCAR officials plan to talk to pit crew members who rushed to aid #3-Austin Dillon after his last-lap crash but will not penalize them, Steve O’Donnell told NASCAR SiriusXM Radio on Tuesday. Pit crew members from the teams of Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kasey Kahne and Casey Mears were among those who ran to Dillon’s car, which landed upside down near the exit of pit road after crashing into the catch fence at Daytona International Speedway. O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, explained on “The Morning Drive” what officials want to discuss with the pit crew members. “Nobody is going to be penalized,” O’Donnell said. “I think people may be commenting on it because we took some hard cards and the reason for that is we want to have a conversation with those folks. Listen, we all applaud everybody who wants to run to a scene and try to help out. That’s something that I think that is really cool about our industry in terms of people caring about their fellow athletes. We just want to talk about the safety aspect of it. We’ve got to dispatch our safety equipment – those folks are experts – and to be able to get to Austin as quickly as possible, assess the scene, his belts, what may be going on, do we need to turn the car over, can he be moved from the vehicle or should he stay in. Any second that we can’t do that because the car may be surrounded can be a challenge. That’s just a conversation we want to have.(NBC Sports)(7-7-21015)

  • KFC to sponsor Whitt at Kentucky: Kentucky Fried Chicken will be back on track in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with driver #35-Cole Whitt. Whitt will pay homage to the restaurant’s iconic founder, Colonel Harland Sanders, during Saturday night’s race at Kentucky Speedway by sporting a white firesuit modeled after the Colonel’s famous all-white suit and black string tie. The event will be KFC’s third sponsored race with Front Row Motorsports and first with Whitt. In addition to wearing the Colonel-inspired firesuit, Whitt will drive a #35 Ford painted with KFC’s iconic red-and-white stripes. The #35 will also be fitted with an in-car camera so viewers can ride along during the 400-mile race. As part of its 75-year anniversary, Kentucky Fried Chicken is re-introducing audiences to Col. Sanders, the founder of the world-famous chicken restaurants and creator of Original Recipe chicken with its 11 herbs and spices. The Colonel served as the company’s spokesman, in his trademark white suit and goatee, for decades until his death in 1980. “It’s cool that KFC is bringing the Colonel to NASCAR,” Whitt said. “We’ve got a lot of fun things planned with KFC to bring attention to the Colonel this weekend, and we’re looking forward to it.” KFC is based just an hour away from Kentucky Speedway in Louisville. The company is happy to put the KFC colors back on a Sprint Cup car at its home track.
    “KFC is proud to partner with Cole Whitt and his team for KFC’s home NASCAR race, the Quaker State 400 at the Kentucky Speedway,” said Kevin Hochman, chief marketing officer for KFC U.S. “Many NASCAR fans know there’s nothing better than a bucket of our Original Recipe Kentucky Fried Chicken while watching the race, and this is our way of saluting them. Although he never drove Sprint Cup, Col. Sanders lived in the fast lane for 90 years, from serving in the U.S. Army in Cuba, to starting a ferryboat company, to becoming the most recognized man in the world at 75.”(FRM), see an image of the scheme on the #35 Team Schemes page.(7-7-2015)

  • Officials to review #3 wreck: NASCAR and Daytona International Speedway officials will review the last-lap crash from early Monday morning where Austin Dillon’s #3 car launched into the catch fence and left his fellow drivers amazed that neither Dillon nor race fans were seriously injured. “We’ll work closely with NASCAR [with our review],” DIS president Joie Chitwood said. “We did this after the last incident [a 2013 Xfinity Series race]. We’re going to learn from it and see what else we can do to be better. I think you saw some of the improvements at work today, so what we can learn from that tomorrow and the next days, we’re going to incorporate moving forward.” NASCAR chairman Brian France said Monday afternoon on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that the “work has already begun” at NASCAR’s research and development center in North Carolina to see if anything can be done to keep the cars on the ground while also trying to have the closest, tightest racing possible. “An accident like last night, boy it sure takes your breath away,” France said. “And it should. But that’s auto racing. And we’re working on better solutions all the time to make racing safer and better. … We have an entire group of people that woke up this morning trying to figure out how we make this better [and] make sure the cars don’t elevate.” Dillon’s car ripped a hole of an estimated 60 feet in the catch fence. It appeared that the fence acted properly by keeping the car out of the grandstands. In doing so, the fence shredded Dillon’s car to pieces, and some debris flew into the grandstands. The car’s engine landed in the tri-oval grass. Dillon suffered a bruised tailbone and a bruised forearm but no significant injuries. Five fans were treated for unspecified injuries, with one going to the hospital and being released later Monday morning.(ESPN)(7-7-2015)
  • added the #19 Minions#35 Kentucky Fried Chicken schemes that will run at Kentucky in July and Talladega in October.
    and added the #24 Axalta – “It’s Been a Great Ride” scheme that will run at Homestead in Jeff Gordon’s final scheduled Sprint Cup Series race.

  • Motorcraft/Quick Lane Team Treats Oregon’s Vale H.S.’s Ford AAA Student Auto Skills Competition at Daytona: The winners of the 2015 Ford AAA Student Auto Skills Competition spent the week of the Coke Zero 400 with Wood Brothers Racing and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Racing Team. Although the weekend ended early for the #21 due to weather cancelling qualifying and putting the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion on the sideline, the team from Vale High School in Vale, Ore., was treated to plenty of behind-the-scenes activity. “The whole thing has been really great but being down here this close to the cars and drivers has been the cool part,” said Jay Saunders, a member of the winning team. “It’s been pretty awesome. Saunders’ teammate, Morgan White, was impressed with his hosts, Wood Brothers Racing co-owners Eddie and Len Wood. “The Wood Brothers have such a great relationship with each other and it’s just great seeing how nice they are considering how famous they are,” White said. Saunders and White’s adventure began as two of 11,500 students nationwide who took the Ford AAA Student Auto Skills qualifying exam. They were one of 10 teams of two students in each state who competed in state competitions. As Oregon’s representative in the national final at Ford World Headquarters June 7-9, the Vale team matched wits and skills with 49 other state winners. Their competition-leading 168 out of 200 on the written test score and 43-minute time to fix 10 problems in a Ford Mustang during the hands-on part of the event, won Saunders and White the event and the week with Wood Brothers Racing as well as tools and trade school scholarships. The week began in the Charlotte, NC area where the team and its instructor, Drew Barnes, had a personal tour of the NASCAR Hall of Fame by Hall of Famer Leonard Wood, raced go karts at the GoPro Metroplex and toured the Penske Racing Facility in Mooresville. They finally toured the Wood Brothers Racing shop in Harrisburg and, while there, helped push the #21 onto the hauler for the trip to Daytona. In addition to hosting the winners for a week, the Wood Brothers also attended the national finals and awards ceremony in Dearborn. “We enjoy the program because it’s young high school kids who work really hard to learn how to work on cars at a young age and are very talented,” said team co-owner Len Wood. “It’s amazing to see these guys get a car with 10 things wrong with it, diagnose and fix everything in less than an hour. Just being a part of a program as positive as the Ford AAA Student Auto Skills Competition is a good thing.”(Wood Brothers Racing)(7-7-2015)
  • Talladega Superspeedway offers “Two for $88” Dale Jr. Ticket Package: In honor of #88-Dale Earnhardt. Jr. capturing the last two Superspeedway races in the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Talladega Superspeedway is bringing back the popular “Two for $88” ticket package, named for NASCAR’s most popular driver and Talladega’s latest winner, for the October 25, Alabama 500. Earnhardt, Jr., who went to Gatorade Victory Lane in the GEICO 500 at NASCAR’s Most Competitive track – Talladega Superspeedway – in May, claimed his second dramatic victory of the year last night at Daytona International Speedway in the Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola. The “Two for $88” Dale Jr. Talladega package gives fans a $32 savings off the regular price for two Lincoln Grandstand tickets to the Sunday, October 25, Alabama 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race -the final race of the Contender Round in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup where the field of 12 eligible drivers for the title will dwindle to eight. The “Two for $88” offer is for a limited time. For more information, visit talladegasuperspeedway.com/dalejr.
    In addition to the “Two for $88” package, Talladega Superspeedway is offering up additional savings for the fall weekend, Oct. 23-25, which also includes the fred’s 250 Powered by Coca-Cola for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (Saturday, Oct. 24)., Fans save $10 off all regular price tickets for the Alabama 500 for a limited time, and kids 12-and-under receive a $50 discount on all seats. Log on to www.talladegasupespeedway.com or call 877-Go2-DEGA for more information.(TSS)(7-7-2015)
  • Watkins Glen introduces new “Bronson Hill” camping area: Race fans looking to camp at Watkins Glen International now have a new area to consider. Due to the increasing demand of RV camping space, the historic circuit has introduced “Bronson Hill”, an outfield location set just outside of the Gate 6 entry into the facility. All sites are sized at 30×50 feet, and feature non-trackside pricing — $375 until Monday, August 3rd, when rates rise to $425. In addition, Two vehicle passes come with each site purchase. Fans can call 866.461.RACE or log onto www.theglen.com for more information.(WGI)(7-7-2015)
  • Special scheme for Dillon at Kentucky: For the second consecutive year, Alsco, a worldwide leader in the rental of linen, uniforms, healthcare garments, and washroom products, has teamed with VF Imagewear to fuel the #3 Chevy Camaro driven by Ty Dillon in the XFINITY Series 300 at Kentucky Speedway on July 10. This opportunity is made possible by Richard Childress Racing’s partnership with VF Imagewear brand Red Kap. In addition, Alsco is adding one of its own partners to the team for this event. Larry H. Miller Dealerships, also based in Salt Lake City, is one of Alsco’s largest uniform customers and will be joining Alsco and VF Imagewear on the #3 Chevy Camaro at Kentucky Speedway. VF Imagewear and Alsco have each been in business for over 100 years, and Richard Childress Racing, having been in business for 46 years, is one of the longest-tenured and most respected teams in NASCAR.(Richard Childress Racing), see an image of the car on the #3 team paint schemes page.(7-7-2015)
  • Tyler Young to make XFINITY debut at Kentucky: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series regular, Tyler Young will make his NASCAR Xfinity Series debut in the Kentucky 300 on Friday at Kentucky Speedway. Currently 13th in the NCWTS driver point standings, Young will not only be making his first NXS start, but will also pull double duty, racing in both the NCWTS UNOH 225 and the NXS Kentucky 300. The Midland, Texas native will wheel the #90 Randco Industries/Young’s Building Systems Chevy SS for King Autosport/SS Green Light Racing in the 200-lap event, an experience the 25-year-old driver has been looking forward to for some time. Calling the shots for Young and the #90 team will be Jason Miller, the current crew chief for fellow NCWTS driver, Ray Black Jr.(Edgehill Management Group)(7-7-2015)
  • Pull-A-Part joins Sieg at Kentucky: RSS Racing welcomes Pull-A-Part as the primary sponsor for this weekend’s race at Kentucky Speedway. Pull-A-Part is an award-winning family business serving the do it-yourself, used auto parts market which operates a network of 28 used auto parts superstores in 12 states. In addition to the race this weekend at Kentucky, Pull-A-Part will also serve as a primary sponsor for the fall race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Pull-A-Part, who has been an associate sponsor for Sieg in 2015, has been a long time partner of Ryan Sieg and RSS Racing.(RSS Racing)(7-7-2015)
  • ADVICS joins Hayley for Kentucky: Sunoco Racing rookie of the Year contender, Cameron Hayley will not only be making his track debut at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta in Thursday night’s UNOH 225, the 18-year-old Canadian driver will also debut a new partner on-board his #13 Toyota Tundra. ADVICS, which is located in Lebanon, Ohio, just 80 miles north of Kentucky Speedway, is a world class brake system supplier which provides advanced high quality brake systems and components to the global market, and will make its debut on the #13 for ThorSport Racing for the 200-lap event in the “Bluegrass State.” (See an image of the truck on the #13 Team Paint Schemes page)(ThorSport Racing)(7-7-2015)


    News from July 6, 2015


  • Entry List for the Quaker State 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway is posted, 46 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including: #21-Blaney, #30-Jeff Green, #32-Will Kimmel, #33-Alex Kennedy, #95-McDowell.
    Drivers who need to be in the top-36 in speed and have no provisional available to them (lowest in owners points): #21-Blaney(44th in owners pts), #62-Gaughan(45th), #30-Green(49th);
    Drivers who would miss the race if qualifying is canceled (least race attempts): #21-Blaney(7 attempts), #30-Green(7), #95-McDowell(10);
    See the full entry list on Jayski.com’s Kentucky Entry List

  • Wood Bothers #21 picks up Snap-On Tools as 2-race sponsor: Two icons in their respective fields are teaming up to go Sprint Cup racing this weekend in the Quaker State 400 at Kentucky Speedway and in the Bojangles Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on Labor Day weekend. Snap-on Tools will sponsor the Wood Brothers’ #21 Ford Fusion, driven by Ryan Blaney, in both races. Both Snap-on and the Wood Brothers have long histories, with Snap-on dating back to 1920 and the Woods racing team to 1950, and both have made great contributions to their fields. Many a modern-day NASCAR fan doesn’t realize that the choreographed pit stops seen today were developed in large part by the Wood Brothers years ago. Similarly, many technicians today may not know that tools like interchangeable sockets turned by a ratchet were pioneered and marketed by Snap-on from its beginning nearly 100 years ago. “I’m really excited to be associated with a long-time company like Snap-on,” Wood said. “We have a lot in common with them.” Eddie Wood said his family’s connection with Snap-on tools predates the formation of the race team. “There are three generations of Woods that have been mechanics,” he said. “My grandfather, J. Walter Wood, was a mechanic at a Ford dealership, and I’m sure he used Snap-on tools.”
    The Woods’ Snap-on tools likely will come in handy this weekend at Kentucky as Sprint Cup teams will be running a new aero package designed to improve the racing on intermediate-length tracks like Kentucky Speedway. An open test date is set for Wednesday, and the #21 will likely see lots of tuning before the green flag drops Saturday night. “It’s a real privilege to be representing a company like Snap-on that has such a rich heritage of quality and craftsmanship,” Wood said. “We’ll do our best to do a good job for them.”(Wood Brothers Racing), see images of the scheme on the #21 Team Schemes page.(7-6-2015)
  • Daytona TV Ratings: Rain-delayed NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from Daytona drew a 2.6 overnight rating on NBC late Sunday night, up 8% from last year on TNT, when the race was postponed a full day due to rain (2.4). The race began at 11:15pm/et and ended after 2:00am. Earlier in the night, rain delay coverage earned a 2.1 overnight. The last time the Daytona race ended so late in the night was 2005, when NBC drew a much-higher 4.8 overnight from 10 PM-2 AM. The 2005 race, it should be noted, aired on a Saturday night – when it is presumably easier for viewers to stay up late. As one would expect, the race was dwarfed Sunday night by the FIFA Women’s World Cup Final on FOX (15.2). The two events never aired head-to-head, but the match undoubtedly stole much of the national attention away from the race.(Sports Media Watch), see race-by-race ratings, 5-year comparsion chart and more on the 2015 TV Ratings page.(7-6-2015)

  • Advanced Patient Care Joins Tommy Baldwin Racing as Associate Sponsor: Tommy Baldwin Racing announced that Advanced Patient Care (APC) has joined on with the team as an associate sponsor for the remainder of the 2015 season. APC’s mission is to employ their care innovation expertise for both patients and providers to improve adherence, care coordination, and health outcomes. Their state-of-the-art services offer providers advanced solutions to coordinate care for patients ranging from population health management to fulfillment of medications to coordination of ancillary services that improve their overall quality of care. “We are proud to have Advanced Patient Care aboard the #7 car for the remainder of the 2015 season,” said team owner Tommy Baldwin. “Offering a preventative step in health care is an important message for us to share with our race fans.”(TBR)(7-6-2015)

  • Fans injured when #3 goes airborne, but OK: A huge crash as cars crossed the finish line early Monday morning in the Coke Zero 400 sent Austin Dillon’s #3 car airborne and tore down part of the catch fence, injuring several fans, one of whom was briefly hospitalized. Dillon’s torn car, with its engine already resting on another part of the racetrack, ended up on its roof and then was smashed into by Brad Keselowski’s #2 car. One fan was sent to a local hospital in stable condition, then treated and released. Daytona president Joie Chitwood said 12 other people were assessed after the accident — four were treated and released by track medics, and eight declined treatment. Officials with the track and NASCAR said they will evaluate the performance of the catch fence. NASCAR also has taken Dillon’s car for a post-accident evaluation, a common procedure after a major accident. Chitwood said that the new Daytona grandstands cause people to take escalators up to the middle level and walk to the lower-level seats, which eliminates fans from trying to walk next to the fence during a race. He said the fence did its job.
    Crew members from various racing teams — including Earnhardt’s — immediately ran out to the wreckage to check on Dillon’s condition and gave a collective thumbs-up to let everybody know that he was OK. After a few moments, Dillon got out of his car and waved to the crowd. He later said he sustained a bruised tailbone and forearm. The wreck started after #11-Denny Hamlin and #4-Kevin Harvick made contact as they crossed the finish line behind race winner #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., who seemed speechless as he crossed the finish line. Hamlin said the wreck started when Harvick gave him a push, a common maneuver at Daytona, and lifted his rear wheels off the ground. “Just snagged him and turned him as he was in the middle of the track,” Harvick said. “I hate that all happened, but just at the end of the race, it becomes pretty aggressive.”(ESPN.com/AP)(7-6-2015)

  • Austin Dillon comments on the wreck at Daytona: #3-Austin Dillon was involved in severe multi-car accident on final lap of the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series Race at Daytona International Speedway, finishing 7th:
    Q) I DON’T THINK I HAVE SEEN MORE HAPPY PEOPLE AFTER A CRASH, HOW ARE YOU?
    Dillon: “I am just going to be really sore. It got my tailbone pretty good and my arm. Should be fine, just go ice it up and get ready for Kentucky. But just thank the good Lord for taking care of me and for what NASCAR has done to make the sport this much safer. I just hope everybody in the stands is all right. That is the next biggest concern. Just praying for everybody and glad the good Lord looked out for me tonight.”
    Q) WHAT HAPPENED?
    Dillon: “You know the 11 got turned by the 4 across the start/finish line and I thought the race was going to be over right there. We were almost there and I was just pushing the 24 and the next thing I knew was that I was looking at my roof for a long time. I thought it was all over when I was sliding there and the 2 came in and really got me. So it was a wicked ride but thank the good Lord above for taking care of me.”
    Q) WHAT WERE YOUR THOUGHTS AS YOU LOOKED OUT THE WINDOW AND SAW YOU WERE SURROUNDED BY CREW MEMBERS TRYING TO HELP?
    Dillon: “I thought that was pretty awesome. As soon as I looked up and I don’t know if it was Casey Mears pit crew member or Casey right at the door, but that made me feel really good and comfortable. The only thing I was worried about was that there was oil everywhere and I wanted to get away from the car and that was why I was scrambling to get out from under it. And then just wanted to waive to the fans and let them know I was all good.”
    Q) THE CATCHFENCE. IT WILL BE A TOPIC OF CONVERSATION. IT KEPT YOU IN THE BALLPARK SO TO SPEAK, BUT DID IT DO ITS JOB?
    Dillon: “I don’t know because I haven’t even looked at the replay yet and I don’t know when I am going to. But I just think the next thing is that we are going to have to make this racing even more safe. We are running 200 mph and pushing each other around out there and it’s just bound to happen. No matter how safe we can make the sport, when you are going that amount of speed, things happen.”
    Q) JEFF GORDON SAID THIS STYLE OF RACING IS MORE LIKE A VIDEO GAME, BUT IN REAL LIFE. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE WHAT YOU SAW THERE IN THE END?
    Dillon: “It definitely is a video game. With three to go you are just going to push somebody until the end of the race. It’s wreckers or checkers. It’s like Talladega Nights out there. So it takes a lot of confidence and just staying into the gas is tough. It is a tough sport and it’s what racing is about and it is why NASCAR has been here for so long.”(Team Chevy)(7-6-2015)


    News from July 5, 2015


  • Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins at Daytona: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway in a Green-White-Checkered finish for his 2nd win of the season, 4th win at Daytona, 10th restrictor plate race win and 25th career win. Earnhardt Jr. led the most laps at 96.
    There was a big wreck at the end of the race when #11-Hamlin and #4-Harvick made contact, turning the #11. #3-Dillon’s car hit the #11 and launched over the field of cars and into the catchfence. The catchefence was damaged but kept the car on the track. Reports had three fans suffering minor injuries. The #3 Chevy was destroyed, the engine ended up in the grass, but Dillon was uninjured, waving at the crowd after exiting the car.
    Unofficially #48-Johnson finished 2nd [his 45th career 2nd place finish] followed by #11-Hamlin, #4-Harvick, #41-Busch, #24-Gordon, #3-Dillon, #31-Newman, #6-Bayne and #15-Bowyer.
    The race was rain delayed until it started 11:42pm/et.
    The first wreck was on lap 3 when #38-Gilliland, who was running 4th, came down in front of #15-Bowyer, touching the nose of the #15 and spinning the #38. Other’s involved trying to avoid the #38 were: #9-Hornish Jr., #10-Patrick, #16-Biffle, #22-Logano, #26-Burton, #32-Labonte, #46-Annett and #62-Gaughan.
    Harvick increases the drivers points lead to 63 points over #88-Earnhardt Jr., who moved to 2nd. #78-Truex Jr. who came into the race in 2nd place, fell to fifth, after wrecking and finishing 38th during one of the big wrecks.
    #18-Busch wrecked early but recovered got two free passes and finished 17th.
    Busch is 128 points out of 30th (to get in the Chase) and needs around a 13th average finish to crack the top 30 in the 9 races before the Chase.
    There were 22 lead changes among 12 drivers. There were 9 cautions for 43 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 134.941mph.
    See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Penalty Report (pdf) and Lap Summary Report (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-5-2015)
  • Race Fast Facts – Daytona:
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the 57th Annual Coke Zero 400, his 25th victory in 558 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his second victory and 11th top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his fourth victory and 19th top-10 finish in 32 races at Daytona International Speedway.
    #48-Jimmie Johnson (second) posted his 14th top-10 finish in 28 races at Daytona International Speedway. It is his 12th top-10 finish in 2015.
    #11-Denny Hamlin (third) posted his sixth top-10 finish in 20 races at Daytona International Speedway.
    #83-Matt DiBenedetto (26th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    #4-Kevin Harvick leads the point standings by 63 points over Dale Earnhardt Jr.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(7-5-2015)
  • 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup CHASE Standings:
    [after Daytona, race 17 of 36]
    (by wins, then by points standings)
    1) #48-Jimmie Johnson [4 wins], 589, -67 (3rd in driver points)
    2) #4-Kevin Harvick [2 wins], 656 (1st)
    6) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [2 wins], 593, -63 (2nd)
    3) #41-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 508, -148 (8th)
    5) #22-Joey Logano [1 win], 581, -75 (4th)
    4) #78-Martin Truex Jr. [1 win], 569, -87 (5th)
    7) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 520, -136 (7th)
    8) #20-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 501, -155 (9th)
    9) #11-Denny Hamlin [1 win], 480, -176 (12th)
    10) #19-Carl Edwards [1 win], 409, -248 (17th)
    [would be in the Chase via points standings]
    11) #1-Jamie McMurray, 526, -130 (6th in driver points)
    13) #24-Jeff Gordon, 500, -156 (10th)
    12) #5-Kasey Kahne, 496, -160 (11th)
    14) #27-Paul Menard, 496, -176 (13th)
    15) #31-Ryan Newman, 472, -184 (14th)
    16) #15-Clint Bowyer, 465, -191 (15th)
    [has a win but not in the top 30 in drivers points to make Chase]
    37) #18-Kyle Busch [1 win], 152, 128 pts out of 30th (needs 13 finish ave)
    (ties are broken by wins, 2nds, 3rds, etc)
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-5-2015)
  • Top-10 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Drivers Points Standings:
    [after Daytona, race 17 of 36]
    1) #4-Kevin Harvick [2 wins], 656
    2) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [2 wins], 593, -63
    3) #48-Jimmie Johnson [4 wins], 589, -67
    4) #22-Joey Logano [1 win], 581, -75
    5) #78-Martin Truex Jr. [1 win], 569, -87
    6) #1-Jamie McMurray, 526, -130
    7) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 520, -136
    8) #41-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 508, -148
    9) #20-Matt Kenseth [1 win], 501, -155
    10) #24-Jeff Gordon, 500, -156
    (ties are broken by wins, 2nds, 3rds, etc)
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-5-2015)
  • Daytona Rookie of the Year Race Results & Points:
    #83-Matt DiBenedetto, finished 26th, 11 rookie points
    #34-Brett Moffitt, finished 27th, 10 rookie points
    #26-Jeb Burton, finished 35th, 9 rookie points
    #33-Alex Kennedy, not entered, Brian Scott ran the car
    #66-Tanner Berryhill, did not race, not entered
    See the 2015 Rookie of the Year page for rules, standings and more.(7-5-2015)

  • Logano looking to sweep Daytona: #22-Joey Logano is looking to become just the sixth driver to sweep the Daytona 500 and the Daytona July race in the same season. The five drivers to accomplish the feat are Jimmie Johnson (2013), Bobby Allison (1982), LeeRoy Yarborough (1969), Cale Yarborough (1968) and Fireball Roberts (1962).
    #22-Logano finished 22nd, failing to sweep.


    ESPN.com’s Racecast – Live Coverage and Chat
    Racing Live! on ESPN.com
    Listen Live Online at Motor Racing Network
    Online Streaming Links
    Live race updates on Jayski.com’s Twitter

  • NASCAR addresses blocking in Daytona drivers meeting: NASCAR Vice Chairman Mike Helton warned drivers in Sunday night’s drivers meeting about blocking. Helton explained the genesis of the double yellow line at Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway before getting into a discussion about blocking. Drivers are not permitted to go below the yellow lines to advance their position. If so, NASCAR will penalize them. If a driver blocks and forces a competitor below the yellow lines, the driver doing the blocking may be penalized. “I point to that because blocking is kind of creeping that way here and at Talladega,” Helton said told the competitors. “Last night’s race, I think, was an example of the unintended consequences that can come from a blocking move. I’m not telling you how to drive a racecar. Lord no, I couldn’t do that. But drivers be conscious about the moves you’re making on the racetrack, particularly when it comes to what we call blocking. Be thinking about that in tonight’s race.”(NBC Sports)(7-5-2015)

  • Why the Coke Zero 400 was run on July 5th and not July 4th? For 29 years, the summer race at Daytona International Speedway was a part of the nation’s birthday. The event was always run on Independence Day, no matter what day of the week. The race was in the morning, and the drivers and their families were celebrating on the beach by late afternoon. The tradition that began in 1959 ended in 1988 when the event was moved into prime time on whatever Saturday was part of the holiday weekend. Now it has been moved once more, to Sunday night, to accommodate the return of NASCAR to NBC.
    Mark Lazarus, chairman of NBC Sports Group, said the change was simply about audience. “The Fourth of July is annually the lowest night of television watching of the year – fewer people watch TV that night because they are all out watching fireworks,” Lazarus told The Associated Press on Saturday. “In order for us to start our relationship with as big a splash as we can, we wanted to give ourselves the best chance and opportunity to have a big audience. It was simply math.” The switch still comes with challenges. By moving it to Sunday night, the race now goes head-to-head against the United States playing in the Women’s World Cup final. NBC’s pre-race show begins at the same time as the game, but the race doesn’t actually go green for another 78 minutes. Lazarus anticipates, barring overtime and penalty kicks, only about 35 minutes of direct competition. He is hopeful, though, that World Cup viewers will flip to the NASCAR race when the game ends. “It’s a mixed blessing – it will bring a lot of different people to the television set,” he said. “We’re hopeful, if we continue to market, that we’ll get some people who wouldn’t be home watching TV to transfer over and check us out.”
    Although both NASCAR and Daytona officials signed off on the switch to Sunday, it’s not the most ideal situation for track President Joie Chitwood. Running the race a day later hurts attendance because campers usually return home on Sunday, and now the World Cup likely will cut into viewership. Chitwood understood NBC’s desire for the Sunday night race, but is thankful the race will return to Saturday night in 2016. “In our conversation with them, it was just the one time,” he said. “We all talked about what we could do special for NBC, and this was one of their components, and it made a lot of sense when we sat down and really talked about it. When you look at what they’ve done with ‘Football Night in America,’ they are just knocking it out of the part. They’ve really captured that. Hopefully, they can sprinkle a little bit of that magic on this event this Sunday. I don’t think anybody a year ago, though, knew about World Cup soccer, so that’s the way the breaks are.”(see full article at the Associated Press)(7-5-2015)

  • Daytona Race Notes & Facts – Sunday:
    · There have been 136 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Daytona International Speedway since the track hosted its first race in 1959: 57 have been 500 miles, 52 were 400 miles and four 250 miles. There were also 23 qualifier races that were point races.
    · 445 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series July race at Daytona International Speedway; 277 in more than one.
    · Richard Petty leads the series in July race starts at Daytona with 32. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 22 starts – this weekend will be Gordon’s final start at Daytona.
    · The Wood Brothers have the most wins at Daytona in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with 15; followed by Hendrick Motorsports with 13.
    · Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory (MOV) in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Daytona International Speedway for the July race was the July 7, 2007 race won by Jamie McMurray over Kyle Busch with a MOV of 0.005 second.
    · Four of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series July races have resulted with a green-white-checkered finish at Daytona International Speedway (Scheduled No. of Laps/Actual No. of Laps): 2008 (160/162), 2010 (160/166), 2011 (160/170) and 2013 (160/161).
    · Only two of the 56 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series July races at Daytona International Speedway has been shortened due to weather conditions: 1) July 6, 1996 – the race was called on Lap 117, 43 circuits shy of the 160 scheduled laps and 2) July 6, 2014 – the race was called on Lap 112.
    (NASCAR)(7-5-2015)

  • Kyle Busch comments on Daytona safety improvements: Toyota NSCS Daytona Kyle Busch Notes & Quotes:
    Q) Do you feel safer at Daytona with the safety improvements that have been implemented?
    Busch: “I wouldn’t say you ever feel safe, but you’re certainly grateful for the opportunity with the race tracks – not just Daytona, but all the race tracks to continue to work on the evolution of safety as well as NASCAR, the work that they’ve done throughout the years with the seats and the HANS device and our restraints and everything. I’m grateful that the Daytona International Speedway was as complimentary as they were after the crash here in the spring. They wanted to fix it and they wanted to do everything they could do in their power to make sure everything was done right here at the speedway and to make it first class. I think they’ve done that. I think there’s certainly always room for improvements – any facility you go to, I feel like there’s room for improvement. Seeing those done here at Daytona was really good.”
    Have you been able to visit the area of the race track where you made impact?
    Busch: “Actually Joie Chitwood (track president) and NASCAR invited me early to take a ride around and just kind of take a look at some of the things that they’ve done. We went early yesterday, just after lunch and was able to take a look at some of those things. Actually got out of the van that we were in and just walked the area a little bit, kind of looked at some things and made some more suggestions of what else they could kind of look at and try to make improvements to. They were all well receptive and I think it was a good thing that we did that. Hopefully again, we can just continue to see the evolution of safety at all these race tracks continue to expand.”
    Q) Did you have any suggestions for Joie Chitwood beyond removing the grass and paving that area?
    Busch: “Yeah, there’s a little bit more of an opening over there in the area in which I crashed that we’d all kind of like to see get closed up some. They have a challenge there with the road course obviously having safer barriers there and everything kind of going on. So, we’d love to be able to see that area continue to be closed up more like it is off of turn four. Turn four has got a small gap over there where the safety workers and their vehicles can come in and out. That was the only other suggestion and obviously of course the grass is an issue that I think a lot of the drivers would echo my statements on.”(Toyota Racing)(7-5-2015)

  • ISC Statement on Safety: Statement from International Speedway Corporation (ISC) President John Saunders: “Following February and the completion of Speedweeks in Daytona, International Speedway Corporation, in conjunction with NASCAR, initiated a thorough review and audit of impact-absorbing technologies at our properties. Based on those findings, ISC will install approximately 54,000 linear feet of additional SAFER Barrier at its facilities. From now through the end of 2016, ISC will work with Cheaha Construction, Smith Fence Company, and North Industrial Machine, all certified organizations with the University of Nebraska, on this installation. As safety remains at the forefront, ISC will continue to work with NASCAR to evaluate specific locations inside the turns for future safety enhancements.”(ISC)(7-5-2015)

  • NASCAR drivers council: No new packages expected for Chase races: NASCAR’s drivers council held its second meeting Saturday at Daytona International Speedway, with aerodynamic rules packages at upcoming races one of the hot topics. NASCAR will try a lower-downforce package at Kentucky Speedway next week, and Jeff Gordon said a high-downforce package will be used for Indianapolis and Michigan. But NASCAR likely won’t change the rules package for any Chase for the Sprint Cup races, Dale Earnhardt Jr. said. “From what I heard today in our discussion, NASCAR was apprehensive really to use any other package then what we have had all year in the Chase,” Earnhardt said. “They would work with the teams and the drivers before making that type of decision. We will go through and see what happens up until the Chase with these different packages they want to try and then maybe come to a decision to change something in the Chase. But until then, nothing in the Chase is really going to change as far as I’ve been told. I feel comfortable about that.”
    NASCAR has been trying different rules packages to shake up the often-stale racing at intermediate racetracks. It formed a drivers council in May to get input from the competitors and held an initial meeting with the group at Dover International Speedway. Earnhardt, Gordon, Denny Hamlin, Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Larson, Clint Bowyer, Kyle Busch and Joey Logano are among the drivers who were elected to the council. “In all the years I’ve been in the sport, these two meetings that we’ve had have been some of the highlights of my career,” Gordon said. “I think it’s huge. … Basically, when you get in that room, you realize that everybody’s goal is to just try to do whatever we can to continue to make this sport as great as it has been and possibly even better.”(USA Today)(7-5-2015)

  • Daytona Rain Ends Wood Brothers’ Seven-Year Streak of Qualifying Success: Ryan Blaney and the #21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion won’t be in Sunday’s Coke Zero 400, but it’s not because of a lack of performance on the part of Blaney and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team. Instead it’s Mother Nature who has been unusually kind to the team in recent seasons. On Saturday afternoon at Daytona International Speedway, threatening skies led NASCAR officials to cancel qualifying and set the field according to the rules that give the allotted starting spots to teams that run full-time. Under the current format, the lineup is set based on the previous day’s first practice speeds, with the fastest car in qualifying starting first and so on. The field is predetermined before the lineup is set; however, based on the number of race attempts each team has made, with the cars making the most attempts eligible before the ones that have run less. It’s the first time the Wood Brothers have failed to qualify for a race for any reason since the team went to a part-time status seven years ago. “I really hate this for Motorcraft/Quick Lane and all of our guests,” team co-owner Eddie Wood said. “We’ve been lucky. This is the first time this has happened since we started part time in 2009. We’ve dodged a lot of bullets, including last time in Michigan. This one got us, but if it has to happen, I’d rather it be for something we can’t control instead of for a lack of performance on our part.” The Motorcraft/Quick Lane Fusion had showed good speed in practice at Daytona, as Blaney posted the ninth-best time in Friday’s final practice. “We’ll go ahead and get home a day early and get ready for Kentucky,” Wood said.(Wood Brothers Racing)(7-5-2015)

  • Big Red to sponsor Josh Wise and #98 Team for four races: Big Red announced that it will serve as primary sponsor for Josh Wise and the Premium Motorsports (formerly known as Phil Parson Racing) team in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for four races. The program will kick off Saturday, July 11th at Kentucky Speedway, where the #98 Big Red Ford will compete in the running of the Quaker State 400. “It is exciting to have the Big Red brands back in NASCAR,” said Gary Smith, CEO of Big Red, Inc. “We have a long history in the sport and have always believed in the tremendous marketing power of the NASCAR platform for our brands. We look forward to these four races with Josh and the #98 team.” In addition to showcasing the iconic Big Red soda brand, the sponsorship agreement will also feature the company’s newly-acquired XYIENCE Performance Energy beverage. XYIENCE is a zero-calorie energy beverage featuring a variety of flavors such as Cherry Lime, Frostberry Blast and its most popular flavor, Mango Guava. Big Red will be featured at Kentucky in July and Talladega in October. XYIENCE will ve featured at Texas and Phoenix in November. “It is always exciting to have support from companies such as Big Red,” added Wise. “Sponsors are key factors in this sport and to have such an iconic brand as Big Red sponsor you is fantastic. I am also an avid bicycler and marathoner, and the XYIENCE Performance Energy product is a great fit with my lifestyle.”(Integrity Sports Marketing), see images of the scheme on the #98 Team Schemes page.(7-5-2015)

  • ISC sees attendance increase at some tracks: International Speedway Corp., saw attendance up for its NASCAR Sprint Cup races during the second quarter of this year compared to the same time a year ago, the company stated this week. The company reported a 9% increase in attendance at Talladega Superspeedway in May and a second consecutive sellout for its Cup race at Auto Club Speedway (capacity 68,000) in March. John Saunders, president of International Speedway Corp., said Martinsville Speedway’s Cup race in March also saw an increase in attendance but didn’t reveal by how much. He said attendance was down 3 percent for the June 14 Cup race at Michigan International Speedway. Saunders said ticket sales were trending up until forecasts of rain for the race. Saunders said attendance was down for Cup races at Richmond and Kansas, citing the weather but did not say by how much. Saunders also said that Sunday night’s Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway, the August Cup race at Watkins Glen and the August Cup race Michigan race, are on track to meet or exceed attendance expectations. Daytona’s grandstand renovation continues and there will be 52,000 seats available for the Cup race. Once the project is completed – in time for next year’s Daytona 500, the seating capacity will be 101,000. Preliminary plans are being made for renovations at Phoenix International Raceway, Richmond International Raceway and Darlington Raceway once the Daytona project is complete, Saunders said. During the second quarter, ISC saw retention rates for ticket sales go from 55% to 58%. “So, we’re getting a significant number of first timers,” Saunders said. “And I will tell you that in our consumer strategies, we very much segment how we promote to those first timers versus returning guests, or tenured guests. But we’re seeing the retention rate grow which is good, but we are seeing new entrants into the sport.”(NBC Sports), see full ISC report at internationalspeedwaycorporation.com,(7-5-2015)


    News from July the 4th, 2015


  • Race Coverage of the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway is scheduled for Sunday, July 5, 2015.
    Television (TV): NBC at 7:45 pm/et; Pre-Race show at 7:00pm/et; green flag approx. 8:08pm/et
    RadioMotor Racing Network (MRN) and Sirius XM Satellite NASCAR Radio 90
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs:
    Monday, July 6 at 9:00pm/et on CNBC
    Monday, July 6 at 3:00pm/et on NBCSN (show called NASCAR 120)
    Tuesday, July 7 at 1:00am/et on CNBC
    Tuesday, July 7 at 4:30pm/et on CNBC
  • Daytona Pre-Race Schedule for Sunday July 5th: (eastern time)
    — 5:45:00 pm: NSCS Driver/Crew Chief Meeting
    — 7:15:00 pm: NSCS Drivers Introductions
    — 7:45:00 pm: Intro Presentation of Colors & Invocation: Patrick Air Force Base Honor Guard
    — 7:45:20 pm: Invocation by: Central Baptist Church in Daytona Beach, Florida, Sonny Gallman
    — 7:46:00 pm: National Anthem: US Navy Band of the Southeast
    — 7:47:15 pm: Flyby TOT: (2) F-16’s; 125th Fighter Squadron “Tulsa Vipers”, Oklahoma Air National Guard
    — 7:47:45 pm: Medal of Honor Recipients Presentation
    — 7:55:00 pm: “Drivers, Start Your Engines” by David Spade
    — 8:08:00 pm: Start of the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona
    eastern time (NASCAR.com)
  • Qualifying for the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway was cancelled due to weather/rain. The starting lineup was set by the rules book: Top 36 in owners points. 37-43 by race attempts. Teams with the least number of attempts miss the race. The 43 cars are then set by practice speeds from the 1st practice session from Friday.
    #88-Earnhardt Jr. will start first [not credited with a pole award] followed by #3-ADillon, #15-Bowyer, #27-Menard, #6-Bayne, #38-Gilliland, #47-Allmendinger, #55-Ragan, #1-McMurray and #5-Kahne.
    Missing the race would be #95-McDowell (9 attempts) and #21-Blaney (6 attempts).
    See the starting lineup on Jayski.com’s Daytona Starting Lineup Page.(7-4-2015)
  • Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway have been made.
    Starting 1st: #88-Earnhardt Jr. chose pit stall 1 [as do most pole sitters].
    Outside pole sitter #3-Dillon took pit stall 21, the first pit stall with an opening in front of it.
    #15-Bowyer, who starts 3rd took the 3rd pit stall, the 2nd stall with an opening in front of it.
    The 43rd and final pit stall was taken by #1-McMurray, who starts 9th.
    To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart on Jayski.com’s Pit Stall Selection chart.(7-4-2015)
  • Steve Byrnes Named Fifth Squier-Hall Award Recipient: Popular FOX Sports broadcaster Steve Byrnes has been named the recipient of the 2016 Squier-Hall Award for NASCAR Media Excellence. Byrnes most recently served as the play-by-play announcer for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series on FOX Sports 1 and was the network’s co-host of NASCAR Race Hub. He passed away in April after a long battle with cancer. Byrnes will be honored during NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony festivities on Jan. 22, 2016 and featured in an exhibit in the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C.
    “For three decades, Steve’s hard work and humanity brought NASCAR fans closer to their favorite drivers,” said NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France. “His passion for the stories and people he covered was always reflected in his work. Steve was respected for his professionalism and adored for his easy demeanor.”
    From 2001-14, Byrnes served as a pit reporter for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races on FOX. He also served as a studio show host and appeared on various programs. Prior to joining FOX, Byrnes hosted a variety of NASCAR programs including Inside Winston Cup Racing with Ned Jarrett and Darrell Waltrip’s Racers on TNN. He also worked as a pit reporter for CBS, TNN and TBS. His courageous battle with cancer served as an inspiration to the NASCAR industry, fans and his peers. In April, shortly before his passing, Bristol Motor Speedway named its Sprint Cup race the Food City 500 In Support of Steve Byrnes and Stand up to Cancer.
    Byrnes was among eight nominees voted upon by a panel comprised of NASCAR and NASCAR Hall of Fame executives, journalists, public relations representatives and former drivers. The Squier-Hall Award was created in 2012 to honor the contributions of media to the success of the sport. Legendary broadcasters Ken Squier and Barney Hall, for whom the award is named, were its initial recipients. Other recipients of the award include Chris Economaki (2014) and Tom Higgins (2015).
    The other seven nominees for the 2016 award were:
    Norma “Dusty” Brandel, the first woman to report from inside the NASCAR garage.
    Russ Catlin, one of the best-known early racing writers and historians, served as editor of Speed Age Magazine.
    Shav Glick, covered motorsports for the Los Angeles Times for 37 years, bringing NASCAR coverage to the West Coast.
    Bob Jenkins, served as the lead NASCAR lap-by-lap anchor at ESPN from 1982-2000.
    Bob Moore, spent more than 20 years as a NASCAR beat writer including stints with the Daytona Beach News-Journal and The Charlotte Observer.
    Benny Phillips, spent 48 years covering NASCAR for the High Point (N.C.) Enterprise, 27 years for Stock Car Racing and 12 years on TBS.
    T. Taylor Warren, best known for his three-wide photo of the 1959 Daytona 500 finish, he covered every Daytona 500 until his death in 2008.
    (NASCAR Hall of Fame)(7-4-2015)

  • Daytona Raceway Pole Notes & Facts – Saturday:
    · Fireball Roberts won the inaugural Coors Light pole for the July race at Daytona in 1959 with a speed of 144.997 mph.
    · 38 drivers have Coors Light poles at Daytona for the July event, led by NASCAR Hall of Famer Cale Yarborough with eight.
    · Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers in Daytona July race poles, with two. Gordon started first in 2007 due to qualifying being cancelled as well.
    · Three drivers have won consecutive Coors Light poles for the July race at Daytona: Cale Yarborough (1970-’71; 1980-’81, 1983-’84), Sterling Marlin (1991-’92) and Dale Earnhardt (1994-’95).
    · Eight of the 56 (14.2%) July NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Daytona have been won from the Coors Light pole; the most recent was Kevin Harvick in 2010.
    · The Coors Light pole is the most proficient starting position in the field, producing more winners (eight) than any other starting position in the July race at Daytona International Speedway.
    · Jimmie Johnson leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average starting position at Daytona with a 9.926.
    · 15 of the 56 (26.7%) July NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Daytona have been won from the front row: eight from the pole and seven from second-place.
    · 41 of the 56 (73.2%) July NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Daytona have been won from a top-10 starting position.
    · Four of the 56 (7.1%) July NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Daytona have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.
    · Six active drivers have posted their first career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light pole at Daytona International Speedway: Greg Biffle (2/15/04), Kevin Harvick (7/6/02), Jimmie Johnson (2/17/02), Paul Menard (7/5/08), Danica Patrick (2/24/13) and Austin Dillon (2/23/2014).
    · The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Daytona is 42nd, by Tony Stewart in the 2012 July race.
    · Qualifying for the July race has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Daytona International Speedway three times: 2007, 2009, and 2010.(NASCAR)(7-4-2015)

  • NBC gears up for NASCAR on NBC: NBC Sports Live Extra, NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, tablets, and connected TVs, will provide racing fans with unparalleled interactive digital access to every NASCAR Sprint Cup series race, including exclusive camera angles, custom diver information, and insider track information, beginning this 4th of July weekend. When accessing NBC Sports Group’s NASCAR Sprint Cup series coverage on NBC Sports Live Extra, viewers will be able to experience NASCAR like never before, by selecting from curated video and infographic options including:
    Multi-view options that bring fans inside the race, combining NBC Sports Group’s race simulcast and alternative camera angles, ranging from in-car views to various key track locations. For the Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on July 5th, one specialty camera will offer an innovative speed shot from turn four, capturing the cars as they speed by at over 150 mph.
    Dedicated full-view, on-board alternate cameras.
    Additional features on the desktop/laptop experience, bringing fans comprehensive race-day information to their fingertips:
    Driver updates, cup standings, and biographies
    Track infographics with key facts and history
    NASCAR on NBC coverage begins on Saturday July 4th at 7:00pm/et with the Subway Firecracker 250 NASCAR XFINITY Series Race on NBCSN. Coverage continues with one of the most anticipated events of the season, the 57th running of the Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at 7:00pm/et on NBC.
    NBC Sports Live Extra will stream NASCAR coverage on NBC and NBCSN via “TV Everywhere,” giving consumers additional value to for their subscription service, and making high quality content available to MVPD customers both in and out of the home and on multiple platforms. The NBC Sports Live Extra app is available on the iTunes App Store, Google Play, Windows Store, Roku Channel Store and Apple TV. For desktops, NBC Sports Live Extra can be accessed at NBCSports.com/liveextra.(NBC Sports)(7-4-2015)

  • Snap Fitness comes aboard to sponsor Cassill at Daytona: Snap Fitness will be the primary sponsor of the #40 Hillman Racing Chevy for Landon Cassill at Daytona for the Coke Zero 400. The #40 Snap Fitness Chevy will run the same patriotic paint scheme for the July 4th holiday weekend as it did for Memorial Day weekend at Charlotte in May (Hillman Racing Twitter)(7-2-2015) UPDATE:After making a huge splash during the Coca-Cola 600, Snap Fitness will have its American flag collage filled with thousands of club owners, personal trainers, and members featured on Landon Cassill’s #40 Hillman Racing car in the Coke Zero 400. “We are thrilled to have Snap Nation back on Landon’s car for this weekend’s Fourth of July holiday race,” Steele Smiley, Chief Officer responsible for brand strategy, said. “As America’s Fitness Brand, it’s fantastic that we can show our pride for this country with thousands of people featured on the car as Landon speeds around the race track. He will have Snap Nation supporting him on all sides.”
    This isn’t the only way Snap Fitness is displaying pride for the country this summer. America’s Fitness Brand is honoring every-day patriots through its “Snap Serves” campaign. For every 30-day trial pass purchased through Labor Day, Snap Fitness will donate $1 to Folds of Honor, a foundation that provides scholarships to the families of soldiers killed or disabled in active duty. To kick off the big weekend, Cassill will be taking over the Snap Fitness Twitter account Friday, July 3. Snap Fitness will also have live coverage this on its social media accounts, including Periscopes. To watch all the action unfold, follow Snap Fitness on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.(Hillman Racing), see images of the car/scheme on the #40 Team Schemes page.(7-4-2015)

  • Goodyear confident of new Darlington tire: A Goodyear official says the company feels good about the tire it will use if NASCAR institutes aero changes for the Sept. 6 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. #2-Brad Keselowski, #20-Matt Kenseth and #14-Tony Stewart took part in a Goodyear tire test Tuesday that used the same aero package that teams will try next weekend at Kentucky Speedway. Because the changes were announced so close to the Kentucky race, Goodyear did not have time to match a tire to those changes. Goodyear will for the Southern 500. Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR’s chief racing development officer, confirmed this week on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that the Southern 500 could be the next race with a different areo package that officials hope will infuse passing throughout the field.
    Greg Stucker, Goodyear director of racing, said he was pleased with this week’s test. “Walking out of there on Tuesday afternoon, we didn’t see anything from a temperature perspective or a wear perspective that sent a big alarm to us,” he told NASCAR Talk. “We feel like we’re in pretty good shape from a tire perspective.” Stucker said the aero changes slowed lap times by about one second but the softer tire allowed drivers to gain that second back. “That was our goal,” Stucker said. “We were trying to replace the aerodynamic grip with the mechanical grip from the tires.”(NBC Sports)(7-4-2015)

  • Jeff Gordon Day and Parade to be held July 9 in Pittsboro, IN: Jeff Gordon, a four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion and five-time winner at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, will have a day and parade in his honor on Thursday, July 9, in Pittsboro, Indiana. Gordon is wrapping up his final full season behind the wheel and visiting on his “Victory Tour” in advance of a final appearance on July 26 at the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard. When Gordon was 14 years old, he and his family relocated to Pittsboro to further Gordon’s racing career. The driver went on to superstardom and members of the Pittsboro community continue to follow their hero in the #24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet. In conjunction with the town of Pittsboro, IMS is staging a parade in Gordon’s honor on Jeff Gordon Day (as designated by the town) at noon on Main Street. Fans are encouraged to line the parade route. A merchandise trailer stocked with Gordon items will be on site.(IMS)(7-4-2015)

  • NASCAR announces it won’t hold banquet at Donald Trump’s resort: NASCAR will not return to the Trump National Doral Miami resort for its postseason Camping World Truck Series and Xfinity Series banquet after Donald Trump’s recent comments on the presidential campaign trail. NASCAR moved that postseason awards ceremony to Trump’s resort last year. It had not announced the location for the 2015 event, and NASCAR spokesman David Higdon said Friday at Daytona International Speedway that the decision not to return was made earlier in the day. “We started talking about it earlier this week, and we were evaluating everything,” Higdon said. “We’ll stick with our plan to announce later this summer where we will be going. We looked at obviously everything that we saw coming down and what we heard from our sponsors and our partners and what we feel we should be doing, and that is what led us to the decision today.” One of the biggest NASCAR sponsors lobbied to have the event moved. Camping World Chairman and CEO Marcus Lemonis wrote in a letter dated for Tuesday that neither he nor anyone from Camping World would participate in an event at any Trump property “due to recent and ongoing blatantly bigoted and racist comments from Donald Trump in regards to immigrants of the United States.” Trump has made several comments about immigrants while on the campaign trail.(ESPN)(7-4-2015)
  • U.S. Navy Band of the Southeast to Perform National Anthem for the Coke Zero 400: During the Coke Zero 400 Weekend on July 3-5, Daytona International Speedway will continue the tradition of saluting the nation’s military service men and women. “From recognizing three Congressional Medal of Honor recipients to having the U.S. Navy Band of the Southeast perform the national anthem, we’re honored to have the different branches of the military play an integral part in this weekend’s activities,” Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III said. Below are some of the different military-themed activities planned for this weekend at Daytona International Speedway:
    Congressional Medal of Honor Recipients: Three Congressional Medal of Honor recipients – Gary Littrell, Command Sergeant Major, U.S. Army; Salvatore Giunta, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army; and Ryan Pitts, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army – will be introduced during pre-race on Saturday prior to the Subway Firecracker 250 NASCAR XFINITY Series race and on Sunday prior to the 57th annual Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. Immediately following the national anthem on Sunday is a special ceremony during which the recipients will be surrounded by 36 colorful feather flags, held by representatives of each branch of the military, which will create one large American flag. The Congressional Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration awarded by the United States government.
    National Anthem: Prior to Sunday’s Coke Zero 400, the U.S. Navy Band of the Southeast – a 23-member instrumental band – will perform the national anthem, with the Patrick Air Force Base Honor Guard presenting the colors. The U.S. Air Force will perform the flyover with two F-16s from the 125th Fighter Squadron, the “Tulsa Vipers”, a unit of the Oklahoma Air National Guard. The U.S. Navy Band of the Southeast will also perform a 20-minute pre-race concert on the pre-race stage.
    For Saturday’s Subway Firecracker 250, the Patrol Squadron Thirty, stationed aboard Naval Air Station Jacksonville, will provide the color guard.
    Honorary Pace Car Driver: Petty Officer First Class Terrell Sisk will lead Sunday’s 43-car field to the green flag as Honorary Pace Car Driver for the Coke Zero 400. Sisk serves in the U.S. Coast Guard on the Aids to Navigation team out of Ponce Inlet, FL.
    Borinqueneers: The U.S. Army’s 65th Infantry Regiment out of Puerto Rico will be visiting the “World Center of Racing” for the Coke Zero 400 Weekend as part of NASCAR: An American Salute, the sport’s seven-week tribute to the U.S. Armed Forces. The Borinqueneers were awarded the Congressional Gold Medal last year for their service during WWI, WWII and Korea. The Borinqueneers are named such after Puerto Rico’s original name, Borinquen. The group amassed 10 Distinguished Service Crosses, 250+ Silver Stars, 600+ Bronze Stars and almost 3,000 Purple Hearts.
    Military Uniform Display: On display in the Sprint FANZONE will be six uniforms representing the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps., U.S. Army, and U.S. Air Force on loan from the Military Museum of North Florida. The uniforms will represent various wars from WWII through the War in Afghanistan.
    Fireworks: Daytona International Speedway will celebrate the Independence Day holiday weekend with fireworks shows both Saturday and Sunday nights over Lake Lloyd after the checkered flag in the Subway Firecracker 250 and the Coke Zero 400. Tickets to the Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race and the Subway Firecracker 250 NASCAR XFINITY Series race are available by calling 1-800-PITSHOP or online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com.(DIS)(7-4-2015)
  • Stabenow Seeks Tax Sweeteners for NASCAR Track Operators: Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., is teaming with Senate Appropriations Chairman Thad Cochran, R-Miss., and other senior Republicans in pressing for a permanent extension of faster tax write-offs for operators of motor racetracks, including 29 venues used for NASCAR events. A new Stabenow bill (S 1624) and a similar House measure (HR 1549) by Rep. Tom Reed, R-N.Y., would make permanent the accelerated seven-year time frame for writing off improvements to racetracks. The incentive was renewed in the two-year tax break extension (PL 113-295) that expired at the end of last year. In coming weeks, Stabenow has signaled that she and other lawmakers will press to add her proposal in a tax overhaul plan and will insist on at least a temporary extension of the sweetener as part of a possible year-end tax break extension package.(Roll Call)(7-4-2015)
  • XFINITY Entry List:There are 39 cars on the preliminary entry list for Friday’s Kentucky 300 at Kentucky Speedway. A few notes:
    B J McLeod will drive the RWR #15;
    Erik Jones is in the Gibbs’ #20;
    Timmy Hill returns to the JGL #26;
    Kyle Busch is back in the #54;
    Dale Earnhardt, Jr. will drive the JR Motosports’ #88;
    Jimmy Weller returns to the #90.(7-4-2015)
    See the complete list on the Kentucky entry list page.
  • Austin Dillon wins XFINITY race at Daytona: #33-Austin Dillon won the Subway Firecracker 250 at Daytona International Speedway. #1-Elliott Sadler finished second, followed by #9-Chase Elliott, #88-Kasey Kahne, #66-Benny Gordon (in the first race for his new team), #43-Dakoda Armstrong, #20-David Ragan, #54-Erik Jones, #0-Harrison Rhodes, and #4-Ross Chastain. There were only 9 drivers on the lead lap at the finish.
    The race ended with a green-white-checker finish after a late race caution. #2-Brian Scott, who led 84 laps on the night, pulled up to block #1-Sadler but was not clear, causing a large wreck.
    There were 7 cautions for 24 laps and 9 lead changes among 5 leaders. Complete results are on the Daytona race results page (pdf).
    (7-4-2015)
  • Daytona XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Austin Dillon(i) won the 14th Annual Subway Firecracker 250 , his fifth victory in 90 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his third victory and 10th top-10 finish in 2015.
    This is his first victory and fifth top-10 finish in six races at Daytona International Speedway.
    Elliott Sadler (second) posted his sixth top-10 finish in 13 races at Daytona International Speedway. It is his seventh top-10 finish in 2015.
    Chase Elliott (third) posted his first top-10 finish in four races at Daytona International Speedway.
    Harrison Rhodes (ninth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Chris Buescher leads the point standings by 34 points over Chase Elliott.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-4-2015)
  • XFINITY Driver standings following Daytona:
    1) #60-Chris Buescher, 560
    2) #9-Chase Elliott, 526, -34
    3) #3-Ty Dillon, 517 ,-43
    4) #7-Regan Smith, 493, -67
    5) #1-Elliott Sadler, 489, -71
    6) #6-Darrell Wallace Jr.#, 472, -88
    7) #2-Brian Scott, 453, -107
    8) #16-Ryan Reed, 441, -119
    9) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 438, -122
    10) #18-Daniel Suarez #, 437, -123
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(7-4-2015)
  • Daniel Suarez on XFINITY pole at Daytona: #18-Daniel Suazer won the Coors Light pole for the Subway Firecracker 250 at Daytona International Speedway with a speed of 180.256mph. #2-Brian Scott will start second. The rest of the top 10: #20-David Ragan, #22-Joey Logano, #54-Erik Jones, #3-Ty Dillon, #33-Austin Dillon, #16-Ryan Reed, #62-Brendan Gaughan, and #1-Elliott Sadler.
    Did Not Qualify: #40-Derek White, #19-Jeff Green, #37-Chris Cockrum, #13-Mark Thompson. The starting lineup is posted on the Daytona starting lineup page (pdf).(7-4-2015)
  • Daytona XFINITY Qualifying Notes:
    Daniel Suarez won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 14th Annual Subway Firecracker 250 with a lap of 49.929 seconds, 180.256 mph.
    This is his first pole in 17 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first pole and 11th top-10 start in 2015.
    This is his first pole in two races at Daytona International Speedway.
    Brian Scott (second) posted his 12th top-10 start of 2015 and his third in 12 races at Daytona International Speedway.
    David Ragan(i) (third) posted his third top-10 start at Daytona International Speedway. It is his first this season.
    Daniel Suarez (first) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    Daniel Suarez, from Monterrey, Mexico, has become the second driver in NASCAR XFINITY Series history to post a Coors Light pole joining Jorge Goeters (Mexico, 2005).(NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-4-2015)
  • Entry list: There are 34 trucks on the preliminary entry list for Thursday’s UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway. A few notes:
    Cody Coughlin will debut in the #25;
    Ryan Blaney returns to the #29;
    The #36 is TBA;
    Daniel Suarez is in the #51;
    Christopher Bell is not listed primarily, but expected in the #52 for KBM;
    Caleb Holman is in the #75;
    Brandon Brown is in the #86;
    David Gilliland is in the #92;
    (7-4-2015)
    See the complete list on the Kentucky entry list page.
  • NASCAR plans new location for banquet: NASCAR will not return to the Trump National Doral Miami resort for its postseason Camping World Truck Series and Xfinity Series banquet after Donald Trump’s recent comments on the presidential campaign trail. NASCAR moved that postseason awards ceremony to Trump’s resort last year. It had not announced the location for the 2015 event. NASCAR spokesman David Higdon said Friday at Daytona International Speedway that the decision not to return was made earlier in the day. One of the biggest NASCAR sponsors lobbied to have the event moved. Camping World Chairman and CEO Marcus Lemonis wrote in a letter dated for Tuesday that neither he nor anyone from Camping World would participate in an event at any Trump property “due to recent and ongoing blatantly bigoted and racist comments from Donald Trump in regards to immigrants of the United States.” Trump has made several comments about immigrants while on the campaign trail. An immigrant from Lebanon, Lemonis has seen success as the owner of Camping World and other businesses. He is the star of the CNBC show “The Profit” where he invests in struggling businesses. Trump attended the banquet last year, mingling with several drivers before the event and welcoming the crowd at the start of the program.(ESPN)(7-4-2015)
  • Bell to run fourth KBM truck in Kentucky: Kyle Busch confirmed Saturday at Daytona International Speedway that his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team, Kyle Busch Motorsports will run four trucks next Thursday night at Kentucky Speedway. Twenty-year-old Christopher Bell, who wowed in his Truck Series debut finishing fifth after starting 10th at Iowa Speedway last month, will drive the #52 Toyota Tundra in the UNOH 225. As of now, Busch says Wes Ward is scheduled to serve as crew chief.(Catchfence.com)(7-4-2015)


    News from July 3, 2015


  • Coverage of Qualifying for the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway is scheduled for Saturday, July 4, 2015 at 4:35pm/et.
    Television (TV): NBCSN, 4:30pm/et
    Radio: Live online at Motor Racing Network (MRN)
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: none
  • Qualifying Order for the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway is posted. 45 cars/drivers are listed.
    The first of the drivers lined up on pit road is #62-Gaughan
    The final driver lined up on pit road is #88-Earnhardt Jr.
    Pit road lineup order for this race was set by 1st practice speed, slowest goes 1st, fastest goes last.
    See the full qualifying order on Jayski.com’s Daytona Qualifying Page.(7-3-2015)
  • Superspeedway Qualifying Format for Daytona/Talladega: The qualifying format at superspeedways will consist of the following:
    · Qualifying for all Superspeedway Events will consist of two rounds with the first round’s order based on the slowest to fastest single lap speed posted in the first practice session.
    · Unless otherwise authorized by the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Managing Director, adjustments, or repairs may not be made to the vehicle after the vehicle has taken the green flag at the start/finish line.
    · Superspeedway Qualifying consists of one timed lap. The lap speed determines the vehicle’s qualifying position. In all rounds, NASCAR reserves the right to have more than one vehicle engage in qualifying runs at the same time.
    · Any vehicle or driver not ready to compete within five minutes of the time called onto the track, may be sent to the rear of the line, repositioned within the order of the qualifying round, or left out of the remainder of the qualifying round, at the discretion of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Managing Director.
    · Throughout Superspeedway Qualifying, each vehicle will be released in a predetermined timed interval as determined by NASCAR.
    · Upon the completion of each qualifying lap, NASCAR will impound each vehicle.
    · Upon completion of the first Qualifying round, the 43 eligible NASCAR Sprint Cup Series vehicles for positions 1st – 43rd will be determined.
    · The 12 eligible vehicles that post the fastest single lap speed from the first Qualifying round will advance to the final Qualifying round.
    · The remaining vehicles will be sorted based on their fastest single lap speed posted in the first Qualifying round in descending order to determine starting positions 13th – 43rd.
    · There will be a ten-minute break after the completion of the first Qualifying round and the 12 remaining vehicles that advance to the final Qualifying round will have their speed reset.
    · Only the following adjustments are permitted during the ten-minute break for the vehicles advancing to the final round; adjustment of tape and use of a cool-down unit.
    · The order of releasing the vehicles for the final Qualifying round is determined by slowest to fastest speeds from the first Qualifying round.
    · The final Qualifying round consists of one timed lap. The vehicle’s fastest single lap speed will determine starting positions 1st- 12th in descending order.(NASCAR)
    Qualifying will be aired on NBCSN, scheduled for 4:30pm/et (no re-air scheduled) on Saturday, July 4, 2015.
  • Happy Hour practice for the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway is over, after 55 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #10-Patrick 198.133
    #41-Busch 197.950
    #4-Harvick 197.946
    #14-Stewart 197.898
    #5-Kahne 197.637
    slowest: #9-Hornish Jr. 188.155 & #26-Burton 188.648
    no speed: #15-Bowyer, #20-Kenseth, #47-Allmendinger, #55-Ragan.
    notes: no incidents or accidents. All teams that went to backup cars got some laps in those cars.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the Daytona Happy Hour Practice Speeds page (pdf).(7-3-2015)
  • First Friday practice for the Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway is over, after 55 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
    #88-Earnhardt 202.284
    #3-Dillon 202.066
    #15-Bowyer 201.993
    #27-Menard 201.970
    #6-Bayne 201.875 (before wreck)
    slowest: #83-DiBendetto 187.348 & #26-Burton 187.739
    no speed: #62-Gaughan, #98-Wise.
    notes: about 10 minutes into practice: #2-Keselowski and #18-Busch made contact in a turn, the #18 spun collecting #78-Truex Jr., #16-Biffle, #11-Hamlin, #31-Newman, #9-Hornish Jr. and #46-Annett Just behind that wreck, #1-McMurray, #6-Bayne and #19-Edwards got together. Going to backup cars: #1, #6, #9, #11, #16, #18, #19, #31, #46, #78.
    The practice was aired on NBCSN. Happy Hour practice is scheduled for 5:00pm/et and be aired on NBCSN.
    See practice speeds and laps run on the Daytona Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf).(7-3-2015)
  • Daytona Goodyear Tire Notes: Teams in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series will run the same Goodyear tire codes at Daytona this week . . . this is the same combination of left- and right-side tires that these teams have run at Daytona since July 2013 . . . Xfinity teams have also run this tire set-up at Talladega the past two seasons . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required to run inner liners in all four tire positions at Daytona . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire (Goodyear), see full notes, tire codes, tire pressures, set limits and more on the Daytona Race Info page – Goodyear section.

  • Daytona Driver Notes & Facts – Friday:
    35 different drivers have won the July race at Daytona International Speedway, led by NASCAR Hall of Famer David Pearson with five wins. Tony Stewart leads all active drivers with four; followed by Jeff Gordon with three.
    · Five drivers have posted consecutive wins in the July race at Daytona International Speedway, including three consecutive by David Pearson (1972 – 1974).
    · Tony Stewart (2005-’06) is the only active driver to win consecutive July races at Daytona.
    · Buddy Baker leads the series in runner-up finishes in the July race at Daytona with five; followed by Richard Petty and Sterling Marlin with four. Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch lead all active drivers with two each.
    · NASCAR Hall of Famer David Pearson leads the series in top-five finishes in the July race at Daytona with 13; followed by Richard Petty with 12. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with seven.
    · David Pearson leads the series in top-10 finishes in the July race at Daytona with 19; followed by Dale Earnhardt with 18. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 11.
    · Dale Earnhardt Jr. leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average finishing position at Daytona with a 13.065.
    · Four active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers have posted their first career win at Daytona International Speedway; two were during the July race: Trevor Bayne (2/20/11), Greg Biffle (7/5/03), David Ragan (7/2/11) and Michael Waltrip (2/18/01).
    · Greg Biffle won the July race at Daytona in his first appearance.
    · Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in laps led at Daytona with 710 laps led in 45 starts.
    · Tony Stewart leads the series among active drivers in laps led in the July race at Daytona with 369; followed by Jeff Gordon with 318 and Dale Earnhardt Jr. with 243.
    · Fewest laps led by a July race winner at Daytona are one lap led by Jimmy Spencer in 1994. The fewest laps led by an active July race winner at Daytona are three laps led by Jamie McMurray in 2007.
    · Kurt Busch leads the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Daytona without visiting Victory Lane at 28.
    · Four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series active drivers have made their first career start at Daytona International Speedway, though none were during the July race: Tony Stewart (2/14/99), Casey Mears (2/16/03), Kasey Kahne (2/15/04), Brendan Gaughan (2/15/04) Danica Patrick (2/27/12), Alex Bowman (2/23/14), Michael Annett (2/23/14).
    · Five female drivers have competed in the July event at Daytona International Speedway in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Janet Guthrie, Christine Beckers, Lella Lombardi, Patty Moise and Shawna Robinson.
    (NASCAR)(7-3-2015)
  • Changes made at Daytona crash scene: The section of Daytona International Speedway where Kyle Busch broke his left foot and right leg in February will look quite different this weekend. The speedway has reconfigured the inside wall with a combination of SAFER barrier and tire barriers near Turn 1, the entrance to the track’s road course. That’s where Busch smacked a concrete wall section Feb. 21, causing injuries that threatened to sideline him for the 2015 season. The new wall is positioned so that a skid into it would be shorter and make impact at a less dangerous angle. The speedway also paved over the grassy area that Busch slid through, as pavement offers more resistance than grass in a skid. That area isn’t the only new area with SAFER barrier at the track. Daytona now has SAFER barrier around the entire outside wall, not just in the turns. It has added SAFER barrier to the inside pit wall just beyond pit road — an area that Kevin Harvick hit in 2014 — but needs to add some SAFER barrier in the turns to make the track completely covered.(see image of the wall at ESPN)(7-3-2015)

  • Dale Jr. running Stars & Stripes scheme at Daytona: Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s #88 Nationwide Chevy will feature a special patriotic paint scheme this weekend at Daytona International Speedway for the Coke Zero 400. The #88 Nationwide Stars and Stripes Chevy features an American flag-themed design and was created to be part of NASCAR’s “An American Salute” campaign. The industry-wide program serves to recognize and thank current, retired and veteran members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families.(HMS), see images of the car/scheme on the #88 Team Schemes page.(7-3-2015)

  • Lowe’s Patriotic scheme returns for Daytona: Jimmie Johnson will pilot the #48 Lowe’s Patriotic Chevy this weekend. The last time Johnson raced the scheme was at the All-Star Race and the 600-mile event at Charlotte in May. The red, white and blue-themed Chevy SS will race this weekend in celebration of the July 4th holiday. Lowe’s has a long history of supporting the military. Lowe’s Home Improvement was founded just after World War II by military veteran Carl Buchan, whose leadership helped it grow from a small hardware store in Wilkesboro, NC, into the Fortune 100 company it is today. Currently, Lowe’s has more than 13,000 active, veteran and Guard/Reserve employees ranging from store employees to managers to customer support center employees in the North Carolina offices.(HMS), see images of the car/scheme on the #48 Team Schemes page.(7-3-2015)

  • Grainger returns to sponsor Newman at Daytona: Richard Childress Racing welcomes Grainger back on board the #31 Chevy of Ryan Newman as the primary partner for the Coke Zero 400. Grainger made its debut with RCR at Pocono Raceway in June. Newman was on mark for a top-10 finish running in seventh position with 11 laps remaining. Unfortunately a competitor lost control of his car and made hard contact with the Grainger Chevrolet which sustained significant damage and resulted in a 39th-place finish. Grainger is an associate sponsor on the #31 for all Cup Series events in which it is not the primary sponsor. With 2014 sales of $10 billion, W.W. Grainger, Inc., is North America’s leading broad line supplier of maintenance, repair and operating products, with operations also in Asia, Europe and Latin America.(RCR), see images of the car/scheme on the #31 Team Schemes page.(7-3-2015)

  • NASCAR releases Kentucky splitter dimensions: On June 10th, NASCAR prepared teams for a new low-downforce aerodynamic package for the Sprint Cup Series which would be introduced next week at Kentucky Speedway. Next Wednesday, the 1.5-mile track will open a day early for Cup teams to practice the new package which has been tested sporadically at the first Darlington test by the #48 team, during the Richmond tire test and again on Tuesday at a Goodyear tire confirmation test featuring drivers from all three manufacturers. On Wednesday, NASCAR released the official changes to the rulebook for Kentucky including the splitter dimensions and graphics. The front splitter overhang will by 1.75-inches shorter for Kentucky while the splitter extension panel has been reduced from 38-inches wide to 25 inches.(see graphics at Motorsport)(7-3-2015)

  • Fisher House Foundation Camouflage Scheme at Daytona for Annett: Pilot Flying J is recognizing veterans throughout the month of July by donating 50 cents for every PhilMor coffee mug sold, up to $25,000, to Fisher House Foundation, a network of comfort homes where military and veterans’ families can stay at no cost while a loved one is receiving medical treatment. To commemorate the promotion, Michael Annett’s #46 Chevy will carry the Fisher House logo and a special camouflage paint scheme for Sunday’s race. Kyle Cones, a U.S. Army veteran and professional driver, will be Annett’s guest this weekend as the winner of Pilot Flying J’s 2014 Road Warrior Program. The 2015 Road Warrior Program launches this weekend, honoring professional drivers who demonstrate hard work, generosity and bravery. For more information, please visit www.roadwarrior.pilotflyingj.com.(HScott Motorsports), see images of the car/scheme on the #46 Team Schemes page.(7-3-2015)

  • Kasey Kahne, Russell Wilson raise over $600,000: #5-Kasey Kahne and Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson teamed up for the second annual The DRIVE, a private charity concert, auction and celebrity-amateur golf event. This year the event raised over $600,000 for Strong Against Cancer.(see images at HMS)(7-3-2015)

  • Watson to replace Confederate flag on General Lee with U.S. flag: Bubba Watson, the world’s third-ranked golfer, announced on Twitter on Thursday afternoon that he would have a U.S. flag painted over the Confederate battle flag on the roof of the General Lee, the car used on the TV show “The Dukes of Hazzard.” Watson bought the 1969 Dodge Charger used on the 1980s television comedy for $110,000 at the Barrett-Jackson Collectible Car Auction in 2012. Watson’s announcement came a day after the television network TV Land announced it had pulled reruns of “The Dukes of Hazzard” out of its programming lineup. Last week, Warner Bros. Consumer Products announced toy replicas of the General Lee would no longer feature the Confederate battle flag on the roof. In 2012, Watson had planned to drive the General Lee during the ceremonial parade lap for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Subway Fresh Fit 500 at Phoenix International Raceway as part of his duties as honorary race official. However, NASCAR changed its mind, citing the flag on the roof, and decided “it was not in the best interest of our sport.”(Alabama Live)(7-3-2015)

  • Republicans Aiming to Register Voters at NASCAR: the Republican National Committee is going to Daytona International Speedway. Spectators at this weekend’s NASCAR races in Florida will be encouraged to register to vote. You might say the party’s staff and volunteers will be “at the races” – literally. It’s part of the kickoff of the RNC’s new drive to register potential supporters and build a ground game earlier in the cycle, with operations in key states across the country over the July Fourth weekend. With a base in the South, NASCAR has generally attracted a more conservative audience that’s receptive to the Republican message.(Roll Call)(7-3-2015)
  • Race Team Alliance partners with DraftKings: The Race Team Alliance (“RTA”), a coalition of NASCAR Sprint Cup teams, through its affiliate RTA Promotions, LLC, has entered into a multi-year marketing partnership with DraftKings Inc., a leading Daily Fantasy Sports company. Working collaboratively with NASCAR, the teams will support and promote the free NASCAR game on DraftKings.com with team marks, social and digital media initiatives, and other activation programs. Rob Kauffman, co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing and Chairman of the RTA stated “We are thrilled to be partnering with DraftKings, an innovative and fast growing company. We believe this partnership will be appealing to our existing fan base as well as potentially attracting new ones. The teams look forward to helping promote the new free online fantasy game, and supporting DraftKings as it makes a strong entrance into the sport.” The partnership with DraftKings will begin in conjunction with this weekend’s Coke Zero 400 at Daytona.(RTA)(7-3-2015)
  • XFINITY, Truck banquets will not return to Trump National: NASCAR announced Friday it won’t return to the Trump National Doral for its Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series award ceremonies, a few hours after a high-profile sponsor threatened a boycott. NASCAR vice president of Integrated Marketing Communication David Higdon said the decision was made after a week of discussion and feedback from sponsors. Higdon said the new location for the awards ceremonies would be announced later this summer, and NASCAR was keeping its options open on moving it out of South Florida. NASCAR has held awards ceremonies before at the ballroom adjacent to the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C. In an open letter Friday to NASCAR chairman Brian France, Camping World CEO Marcus Lemonis said he and his employees wouldn’t attend another postseason awards ceremony if it were held at a property associated with Trump.(NBC Sports)(7-3-2015)
  • Ty Dillon fastest in XFINITY happy hour: #3-Ty Dillon was quickest during happy hour for the Subway Firecracker 250 with a speed of 179.978mph. He was followed by: #13-Mark Thompson, #40-Derek White, #22-Joey Logano, #26-Timmy Hill, #88-Kasey Kahne, #15-Scott Lagasse, Jr., #7-Regan Smith, #66-Benny Gordon, and #25-John Wes Townley. 23 drivers participated in the session. See complete results on the Daytona practice 2 speeds page (pdf).(7-3-2014)
  • Ragan fastest in first XFINITY practice: #20-David Ragan was fastest during opening practice at Daytona International Speedway with a speed of 190.573mph. #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr. was second, followed by: #16-Ryan Reed, #18-Daniel Suarez, #2-Brian Scott, #60-Chris Buescher, #54-Erik Jones, #42-Brennan Poole, #88-Kasey Kahne, and #28-J.J. Yeley. 34 drivers practiced during the session. See complete results on the Daytona practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(7-3-2014)
  • Harmon gets Daytona sponsors: Cleveland Entrepreneurs launch Skulltimate Gear with a bang. Skulltimate Gear sells apparel, biker skull rings, skull shirts and art that’s skull related. From bikers to pin up girls, Skulltimate Gear plans to cater to the counterculture, and what better way than with the rebellious representation of the skull. On July 4th, the sounds you hear won’t just be from firecrackers, two brothers from Ohio will be bringing their business talents to the NASCAR Firecracker 250 held at the Daytona International Speedway. Ted and Todd Moss co-founders of several successful businesses including, Crimcheck.com, Investigations America and Fresh Squeezed Minds will be showcasing their newest Endeavour. “Skulltimate Gear” will be a prominent sponsor on the Fat Bobs Racing Team’s entry and in conjunction with Mike Harmon Racing for this year’s race.(Fat Bob’s Garage), see an image of the car on the #74 team paint schemes page.(7-3-2015)

  • Coughlin to debut in Kentucky: Cody Coughlin will make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut at Kentucky Speedway on July 9. Coughlin, a development driver for Joe Gibbs Racing, will make his debut with Venturini Motorsports in the #25 sponsored by JEGS. Coughlin has six starts this season in the ARCA Racing Series, with two top-fives and three top-10s.(Venturini Motorsports Facebook)(7-3-2015)
  • Daytona to offer Confederate flag exchange UPDATE: Daytona International Speedway will implement a voluntary flag exchange program this weekend for any fans flying a Confederate flag during the track’s traditional Independence Day race weekend. DIS President Joie Chitwood said Tuesday that because fans had purchased tickets, he would not change the flag policy for this weekend so close to the event. He said the track will offer United States flags in exchange for Confederate flags. “We want to be inclusive to everyone, and the last thing you want is for anyone to come to a sporting event and really not enjoy that experience because of symbols that really represent things we’re not proud of,” Chitwood told reporters after a news conference to announce a new track sponsor. “For us, we’re celebrating the American flag this weekend. It’s our nation’s birthday. … Going forward, we’ll really have to look at where that other flag goes because it doesn’t have a place in our sport and we’ve got to take a thoughtful process on how we get to that place.”(ESPN)(6-30-2015)
    UPDATE: Daytona International Speedway, along with the rest of the tracks that host NASCAR national series races, issued a statement Thursday asking fans to refrain from displaying the Confederate flag at the racetracks. DIS had a box of U.S. flags ready to exchange for Confederate flags to anyone who asked while checking in Thursday for the race weekend. A track spokesman said that as of 3:00pm/et — seven hours after the check-in started — no one had asked to exchange the flag. Those checking in the campers did not ask if they wanted to exchange.(ESPN)(7-3-2015)
  • Sonoma Nets More Than $236,000 for Local Youth Groups: Charitable programs combined to raise more than $236,000 for Sonoma County youth groups during the Toyota/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekend at Sonoma Raceway, June 26-28. The proceeds from the majority of events will benefit Sonoma County youth organizations through the Sonoma Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities, the charitable arm of the raceway, which has distributed more than $4.8 million to local youth-serving non-profit groups since 2001. The Children’s Champions Grand Marshal’s Banquet generated over $150,000, while the Ride-of-a-Lifetime Charity Auction, which was hosted online this year, raised almost $9,000. A special live auction was held the night of the banquet for a Ride-of-a-Lifetime experience with Jeff Gordon, which pulled in $10,000; the largest donation ever for a Ride-of-a-Lifetime in Sonoma. High bidders in the Ride of a Lifetime promotion accompany NASCAR drivers around the track on race-day as part of the driver introduction ceremonies.(Sonoma Raceway)(7-3-2015)


    News from July 2, 2015


  • Snap Fitness comes aboard to sponsor Cassill at Daytona: Snap Fitness will be the primary sponsor of the #40 Hillman Racing Chevy for Landon Cassill at Daytona for the Coke Zero 400. The #40 Snap Fitness Chevy will run the same patriotic paint scheme for the July 4th holiday weekend as it did frr Memorial Day weekend at Charlotte in May (Hillman Racing Twitter), see images of the car/scheme on the #40 Team Schemes page.(7-2-2015)

  • Truex Jr. has hand-shake deal with Furniture Row Racing: #78-Furniture Row Racing has exceeded expectations this season, but it might have a tough time maintaining the continuity next year that has place Martin Truex Jr. second in the Sprint Cup points standings. The big unknown is whether Truex has priced himself out of FRR’s range. Truex signed a two-year contract with owner Barney Visser’s team in 2014 after Kurt Busch left FRR for Stewart-Haas Racing. His contract expires after the season. “Honestly, I wish my contract was longer before this year started,” Truex said. “I have no plans of going anywhere without something crazy happening.” Visser has every intention in keeping Truex, but he needs to find another main sponsor. Currently Visser self-sponsors FRR through his two companies, Furniture Row and Visser Precision, LLC. Truex said he has a handshake agreement with general manager Joe Garone that he will return. “I expect it won’t be too far out,” Truex said of an agreement. “There are some things that the team needs to figure out and get their ducks in a row before we nail down all the details.” One option to generate more money to help keep Truex is switching manufacturers. FRR has been the owner of the black Chevrolet 78 car since its inception in 2005. Visser said there hasn’t been any money coming from Chevy, and he doesn’t see that changing anytime soon. Toyota offered incentives for Visser to make a switch in cars last season, and calls are likely to increase this offseason with FRR’s success.(Denver Post)(7-2-2015)

  • Coca Cola scheme for Larson at Daytona: Kyle Larson’s #42 Chevy will carry a “Share a Coke” theme this weekend at Daytona for the Coke Zero 400 (CGR), see an image of the scheme on the #42 Team Schemes page.(7-2-2015)

  • Daytona Track Notes & History – Thursday:
    · Groundbreaking for Daytona International Speedway was Nov. 25, 1957. The soil underneath the banked corners was dug from the infield of the track and the hole filled with water. It is now known as Lake Lloyd.
    · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona was a 100-mile qualifying race for the Daytona 500 on Feb. 20, 1959 – won by Bob Welborn.
    · The first summer race at Daytona International Speedway was held on July 4, 1959 – won by Fireball Roberts (140.581 mph).
    · NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty won his 200th career race on July 4, 1984 at Daytona.
    · Lights were installed in the spring of 1998. However, the July race was delayed until October that year due to thick smoke from wildfires. The second Daytona race has been held under the lights ever since.
    · The track underwent a repave in 2010.
    (NASCAR)(7-2-2015)

  • Industry asks fans to refrain from displaying Confederate flag: Statement from NASCAR Industry Members: “As members of the NASCAR industry, we join NASCAR in the desire to make our events among the most fan-friendly, welcoming environments in all of sports and entertainment. To do that, we are asking our fans and partners to join us in a renewed effort to create an all-inclusive, even more welcoming atmosphere for all who attend our events. This will include the request to refrain from displaying the Confederate Flag at our facilities and NASCAR events. We are committed to providing a welcoming atmosphere free of offensive symbols. This is an opportunity for NASCAR Nation to demonstrate its sense of mutual respect and acceptance for all who attend our events while collectively sharing the tremendous experience of NASCAR racing.”(NASCAR with signatories of ALL race tracks of ISC & SMI and many others)(7-2-2015)

  • Gilliland to be sponsored by Florida Lottery at Daytona: The colors of the Florida Lottery will adorn David Gilliland’s #38 Ford Fusion for Sunday’s Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway. The 38-year-old Gilliland is a two-time polesitter at Daytona, including at last year’s Coke Zero 400, and will look to put the Florida Lottery Ford in the lead for Sunday night’s 400-mile event once again. The Florida Lottery has contributed more than $28 billion to the state’s public education in 27 years, offering seven terminal games and approximately 60 scratch-off games at more than 13,000 retailers statewide. The games have made more than 1,400 people millionaires with more than $46 billion in prize payouts since the first ticket was sold. “It’s great having a Florida-based partner for the Daytona race, especially one that can appeal to so many fans,” Gilliland said. “The Florida Lottery does great things for education while giving people lots of chances to win cash prizes. We’ll do our best to get them plenty of attention by running up front.”
    “Partnering with David Gilliland for the Coke Zero 400 is a win-win for the Florida Lottery,” said Florida Lottery Secretary Cynthia O’Connell. “We are thrilled to bring Lottery and race fans together to increase awareness of our mission of maximizing revenues for education in Florida. We are proud to partner with David and Front Row Motorsports and are hopeful for a successful weekend at Daytona International Speedway.”(FRM), see an image of the scheme on the #38 Team Schemes page.(7-2-2015)

  • Number of FORTUNE 500 Companies in NASCAR Increases: Since the moment stock cars first raced on the shores of Daytona Beach, sponsorship has played a role in NASCAR. Today, the world’s most successful and innovative corporations choose NASCAR to help drive their businesses. The results of an analysis released today shows that more than one-in-four FORTUNE 500 companies use NASCAR as part of their marketing mix – a number that has steadily increased for three consecutive years. The number of FORTUNE 500 companies invested in the sport increased 7% year-over-year. Nearly one-in-two FORTUNE 100 companies now invest in NASCAR, also an increase over 2014. The 130 companies involved in the sport mark a 20% increase since 2008, before significant changes to the economy as well as the media and marketing landscape. On the heels of a recently announced Official Partnership with Microsoft – and several other technology brands entering the sport this year and last – the number of FORTUNE 500 tech companies invested in NASCAR has increased by 66% since 2013. Brand exposure in NASCAR is especially valuable given the loyalty of its fans. Repucom’s SponsorLink tracker shows seven out of 10 NASCAR fans are loyal to a brand when it sponsors their sport, higher than all other major sports properties. To be eligible for the FORTUNE 500, a company must be based in the U.S. and be publicly traded. Though many more FORTUNE 500 companies advertise on NASCAR-related television programming, only those that are partners or licensees with the sanctioning body, teams and / or tracks were counted in the analysis. Although being a FORTUNE 500 company is the gold standard of success for publicly-traded companies in the United States, there are several global corporations currently involved in NASCAR that were not included in the analysis because they do not meet FORTUNE’s criteria. A number of those not qualifying, but involved significantly in NASCAR, include Ingersoll Rand, MillerCoors, Mars, McLaren and Toyota.(NASCAR)(7-2-2015)

  • Truex Jr. to make 350th career Sprint Cup start: The success that Martin Truex Jr. and Furniture Row Racing enjoyed in February at Daytona International Speedway to open the 2015 season turned out to be an omen for the single-car team. Truex and his #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevy sent an early message in the three races during Daytona Speedweeks. Truex finished second in the Sprint Unlimited and fifth in the 150-mile qualifying race, both non-points events. He ended Speedweeks with a strong eighth-place result in the Daytona 500. “Those three races during Speedweeks told us that we were on the right course of what we were working on at the end of 2014 and during the offseason,” said Truex, who celebrated his 35th birthday on Monday (June 29). “Speedweeks also gave us a big confidence boost to start the season.” Truex is off to his best start in the Sprint Cup Series. In the first 16 races he has one win (at Pocono), five top-fives, 14 top-10s and has led 486 laps. He has been second in driver points since finishing fifth at Talladega on May 3. The above performance numbers are a vast improvement for the New Jersey native, who had one top-five, five top-10s and led only one lap in last year’s 36-race season. Truex will be looking for another Daytona bounce as he returns to the hallowed superspeedway for Sunday night’s Coke Zero 400, which will mark his 350th career Sprint Cup start. He is coming off his worst finish of the season (42nd) after getting knocked off the track and into a tire wall by a fellow competitor at the Sonoma Raceway road course. The incident ended his day early — on Lap 28 of 110 — with severe front-end damage to his race car.(Furniture Row Racing PR)(7-2-2015)

  • Logano looking to sweep Daytona: #22-Joey Logano is looking to become just the sixth driver to sweep the Daytona 500 and the Daytona July race in the same season. The five drivers to accomplish the feat are Jimmie Johnson (2013), Bobby Allison (1982), LeeRoy Yarborough (1969), Cale Yarborough (1968) and Fireball Roberts (1962).

  • Shark Week scheme for Kahne: Great Clips will adorn the hood of Kasey Kahne’s #5 Chevy this weekend at Daytona International Speedway, and will be the primary sponsor on the car for three more Sprint Cup Series races this year: New Hampshire in July, Chicago in September and Homestead in November. Great Clips, the world’s largest salon brand with more than 3,800 salons in the United States and Canada, has partnered with Shark Week for the third year. Shark Week heads to Daytona this weekend with Kasey Kahne driving the #5 Great Clips/Shark Week Chevy. Great Clips and Discovery are working together to encourage NASCAR fans to give back through a unique donation program; with every Great Clips mobile app download between June 1 and July 12, Great Clips will donate $1 to Oceana’s shark conservation efforts. The Great Clips partnership also allowed Kahne to come face-to-face with real-life sharks last month during a dive in the Bahamas (see an article about the dive at espnfrontrow.com)(HMS), see images of the scheme on the #5 Team Schemes page.(7-2-2015)

  • NBCSN Introduces new post-race show: Following NBC’s Sunday night coverage of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400, NBCSN will debut NASCAR Victory Lap, a new weekly one-hour NASCAR program recapping the biggest moments of each weekend’s Sprint Cup Series and XFINITY Series races on NBC and NBCSN. NASCAR Victory Lap is scheduled to air Sundays at 11:00pm/et on NBCSN, through the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship at Homestead. NASCAR Victory Lap, hosted by Carolyn Manno with analyst and current NASCAR driver Brian Vickers, will serve as a destination for NASCAR fans each Sunday night, utilizing highlights from NBC and NBCSN’s race coverage, scanner audio from the teams, and post-race interviews and commentary to provide a comprehensive look back at the most compelling stories from each race weekend. In addition, the program will also feature exclusive interviews with the winner of the Sprint Cup Series race from NBC Sports’ trackside studio. The 60-minute program will feature insight and analysis from NBC Sports Group’s NASCAR broadcast team, including 21-time NASCAR Sprint Cup winning driver Jeff Burton, Daytona 500-winning crew chief Steve Letarte, engaging NASCAR personality Kyle Petty, and three-time Daytona 500 champion and Hall of Fame driver Dale Jarrett. NBC Sports Group’s team of veteran pit reporters, comprised of Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Dave Burns and Mike Massaro, will take viewers through the field following each race, while lead NASCARTalk writer Nate Ryan and NBC Sports’ NASCAR features reporter Rutledge Wood will also contribute. In addition to NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and XFINITY Series coverage, NASCAR Victory Lap will also provide recaps and analysis of Formula One and Verizon IndyCar Series races throughout the season.(NBC Sports)(7-2-2015)

  • Tommy Baldwin Racing re-signs Bowman UPDATE2: Tommy Baldwin Racing has exercised its option on Alex Bowman. Bowman, 22, joined TBR at the start of the 2015 season. The driver of the #7 Nikko/Golden Corral Chevy is one of NASCAR’s rising stars. “Obviously, we have a lot of good things going on for the future,” said team owner Tommy Baldwin Jr. “We picked up his option last week. We’re real excited about what we have going on with TBR right now. We figured if we got Alex locked down and then we can work on all the necessary tools to keep climbing up the ladder.”(Motorsport)(6-28-2015)
    UPDATE: Tommy Baldwin Racing has exercised their option to keep Alex Bowman in the #7 Chevy for the 2016 season. “We’ve got some great things happening right now and the most important part of all our plans was signing Alex as early as possible,” said team owner Tommy Baldwin. “Now we can continue to focus on the rest of the parts and pieces needed to continue our forward progress.”
    “I’m excited for all the things Tommy and the team have in the works and knowing that I will be a part of that for the next year is a good feeling,” said Bowman. “This has been a good year for us and I am confident in what we can continue to do this season and next.”(TBR)
    AND the team will have Advance Auto Parts as the the sponsor on the #7 Chevy at Kentucky. See an images of the car on the #7 Team Schemes page.(7-1-2015)
    UPDATE: Tommy Baldwin Racing’s Alex Bowman will team with Advance Auto Parts and Quaker State for the upcoming Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts race on July 11th at Kentucky Speedway. “We are proud to have Advance Auto Parts and Quaker State onboard for Kentucky,” said team owner Tommy Baldwin. “It’s a big race weekend for them as sponsors of the Quaker State 400 and we are proud to have them on the #7 car for the weekend.”
    “I am looking forward to having Advance Auto Parts on board at Kentucky,” said Bowman. “The Kentucky race is always one of my favorites but having Advance Auto onboard with our No.7 Chevrolet is going to make this a great weekend.” This is the third year that Advance Auto Parts has been a presenting sponsor of the Kentucky race. “We are extremely excited to support Sprint Cup racing in Kentucky, and to have the Advance colors on the #7 Chevy,” said Advance Auto Parts SVP CMO Walter Scott.(TBR)(7-2-2015)
  • Sad News – Mary Scott: The following is a brief statement from the NASCAR Hall of Fame Executive Director Winston Kelley on the passing of Mary Scott. “On behalf of the entire NASCAR Hall of Fame team, I would like to offer our most sincere condolences to the entire Wendell Scott family on the passing of Mary Scott. Like many racing wives, Mary was not only the matriarch of the family but the foundation and rock of the family. She was a huge part of Wendell’s life, his perseverance and the successes they shared together. She was so proud of Wendell and especially his selection into the NASCAR Hall of Fame for the Class of 2015. Mary will be deeply missed, but her memory and impact on so many will live on forever.”(NASCAR Hall of Fame)(7-2-2015)
  • Gase gets Daytona sponsors: Joey Gase and Jimmy Means Racing are teaming up with supportmilitary.org (presented by X Avaition) and Faith of Our Fathers the movie (in theaters now) this weekend in Daytona. Support Military Foundation’s vision is to honor our “Heroes Behind the Camo” by partnering with various organizations to promote programs that can provide our Heroes and their family members with an opportunity or experience building fellowship and/or offers a resource. Support Military Foundation currently has 52 organizations that can provide quality services or resources to our Heroes.
    Fifty years after the Vietnam War began, Faith Of Our Fathers honors and celebrates America’s heroes and their families who sacrificed so much for our freedom. The team will be honoring our hero U.S. Marine Corp Sargeant, Kenny Fetters for the race and NASCAR will be introducing Sargeant Fetters in the Subway Firecracker 250 drivers meeting.(Joey Gase Racing), see an image of the car on the #52 team paint schemes page.(7-2-2015)
  • Cope names Daytona sponsor: Derrike Cope Racing announces their partnership with “Evergreen Fabrication and Industrial Services, LLC” for the Subway Firecracker 250 at Daytona. Evergreen Fabrication out of Texas meets customer expectations by delivering a high quality product at a competitive price, constructed with superior craftsmanship as they build a state of the art business on the foundations of safety, honesty and integrity. Offering a variety of services such as design, electrical, fabrication and much more, Evergreen brings nothing but quality to their clients. Along with Evergreen, DCR welcomes associate sponsors for this event, Carefree Catering, Wix Filters, Charlie’s Soap, and Fanvision.(Derrike Cope Racing)(7-2-2015)
  • Special scheme for Smith at Daytona: Regan Smith will pay homage to America with a special Stars and Stripes scheme on his #7-Fire Alarm Systems Chevy at Daytona. A partner of JR Motorsports since 2013, Fire Alarm is based in Denver, Colo., and serves customers as a single provider for all their fire alarm, electrical, security and fire suppression needs.(JR Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #7 team paint schemes page.(7-2-2015)

  • Dale Jr. driving the #88 in Kentucky NXS race: As the NASCAR season approaches its midway point, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is showing off a new “squeeze” at the upcoming XFINITY Series Race at Kentucky Speedway. Earnhardt will drive the #88 Chevy, which will feature a fresh “Hellmann’s Squeeze” paint scheme for the July 10 event. The makeover is a nod to Hellmann’s newly-designed squeeze bottle created after Hellmann’s discovered that more than 1,000 pounds of mayonnaise were trapped inside its old squeeze bottles – leaving 30,500 burgers topping-less. The phrase, “Squeeze More Out,” scribed across the hood of the blue and yellow Chevy refers to the new bottle’s ability to get more mayo out than ever before and will hopefully lead him to “squeeze” out a win in Kentucky.(PR), see an image of the car on the #88 team paint schemes page.(7-2-2015)


    News from July 1, 2015


  • Top 10 Driver Ratings at Daytona
    #18-Kyle Busch…………………………… 96.2
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr…………………… 91.9
    #41-Kurt Busch……………………………. 90.5
    #20-Matt Kenseth………………………… 89.9
    #24-Jeff Gordon………………………….. 88.0
    #48-Jimmie Johnson…………………….. 87.9
    #11-Denny Hamlin……………………….. 87.7
    #14-Tony Stewart…………………………. 86.6
    #22-Joey Logano………………………… 85.8
    #15-Clint Bowyer…………………………. 84.0
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2015 races (21 total) among active drivers at Daytona International Speedway.
    Formula combining the following categories: Win, Finish, Top-15 Finish, Average Running Position while on Lead Lap, Average Speed Under Green, Fastest Lap, Led Most Laps, Lead-Lap Finish. Maximum: 150 points per race.
    See an explanation how the Driver Rating is calculated at NASCAR.com.(NASCAR)

  • Ducks Unlimited scheme for Stewart at Daytona: Tony Stewart returns to Daytona for his 34th Sprint Cup start at Daytona International Speedway with Ducks Unlimited on the quarterpanels of his signature #14 Bass Pro Shops Chevy for Stewart-Haas Racing. As it has since 2013, Ducks Unlimited, the world’s largest non-profit organization dedicated to conserving North America’s continually disappearing waterfowl habitats, will share the orange-and-black #14 Chevy with Bass Pro Shops during the Coke Zero 400. Since 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 13 million acres thanks to contributions from more than a million supporters across North America. Winning at Daytona is a real feather in Stewart’s cap. He is the only active Sprint Cup driver to win back-to-back Coke Zero 400 wins, and augmenting his four wins are seven top-threes, nine top-fives and 14 top-10s in 33 starts at Daytona.(SHR), see an image of the scheme on the #14 Team Schemes page.(7-1-2015)
  • NBC Sports NASCAR Launch by the Numbers: NBC Sports Group’s multiplatform coverage of NASCAR Sprint Cup and XFINITY Series racing is gearing up in a big way over 4th of July weekend. Coverage begins Saturday, July 4th, at 7:00pm/et with the Subway Firecracker 250 NASCAR XFINITY Series race on NBCSN. On Sunday evening, NBC presents the 57th running of the Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at 7:00pm/et. The events wave the green flag over NBC Sports Group’s 10-year chapter as the home of NASCAR’s championship run, and NBC Sports’ production team in Daytona will employ a crew of more than 195 personnel, 70 cameras, and a wide collection of other tools to deliver the action.
    Listed below are some key metrics surrounding NBC Sports Group’s upcoming NASCAR coverage:
    1 Helicopter providing aerial footage
    2 Open-air infield set locations for NBC Sports’ pre- and post-race coverage
    3 Daytona 500 victories captured by pre-race analyst Dale Jarrett
    5 Trucks that comprise “Peacock One,” NBC Sports’ state-of-the-art, mobile production unit group, designed in partnership with Game Creek Video
    12 Members of NBC Sports NASCAR on-air broadcast team on site at Daytona
    16 Race Analyst Steve Letarte’s age when he took a job sweeping the floors at Hendrick Motorsports
    18 Robotic cameras, some with high speed heads capable of tracking cars topping 200 MPH
    19 NASCAR XFINITY Series slated to air on NBC and NBCSN this season
    20 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races on NBC(7) and NBCSN(13) this season
    21 Number of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races won by race analyst Jeff Burton
    23 HDK 4300 cameras with 4K capabilities
    24 On-board cameras imbedded within Sprint Cup Series cars
    70 Total cameras on site including: in-car, robotic, hard, hand-held, studio, jib, SSM, booth, beauty, pit, aerial, and grass cameras
    80 NBC Sports microphones placed throughout Daytona International Speedway
    195 NBC Sports Group personnel on-site in Daytona.
    250+ NASCAR AMERICA shows on NBCSN since the weekday news and highlights program’s debut after the 2014 Daytona 500.
    150,000 Feet of fiber cable (more than 28 miles), surrounding Daytona International Speedway.(NBC Sports)(7-1-2015)

  • Jeff Gordon to be honored in New York UPDATE: Jeff Gordon is scheduled to be inducted into the Ride of Fame this coming Tuesday, June 30th in New York City at Pier #78. This event starts at 2:00pm/et and is open to the public. More info at rideoffame.com.(6-29-2015)
    UPDATE Jeff Gordon was inducted into the Ride of Fame on Tuesday, June 30th in New York City. The Ride of Fame is a mobile monument honoring celebrities showcasing NYC. See images at Ride of Fame Facebook page.(7-1-2015)
  • Chevy becomes Founding Partner of Daytona Rising: International Speedway Corporation and Chevrolet announced a multi-year partnership that will make Chevrolet a Founding Partner at Daytona International Speedway (DIS) as part of its Daytona Rising redevelopment project. The historic $400 million Daytona Rising project, encompassing the Speedway’s nearly one-mile long frontstretch, will be complete by January 2016. Beginning in 2016, the multi-year agreement will provide Chevrolet with naming rights for one of five fan injectors. The massive, new and redesigned entry includes over 20,000 square feet of Chevrolet new vehicle displays and a fan engagement experience that vertically spans four concourse levels. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed. Chevrolet will also have branding rights for one of the “neighborhoods” located near its injector. Each football field-sized neighborhood will be located throughout the new frontstretch and feature retail and dining areas, as well as dozens of video screens. Additionally, Chevrolet will serve as an official partner of the Daytona 500, and receive official pace car rights in select years. In addition to the Founding Partner status with Daytona Rising, Chevrolet extended its pace car rights at several ISC facilities including Darlington Raceway, Phoenix International Raceway and Watkins Glen International for various NASCAR and IMSA events. For tickets and more information on Daytona International Speedway events, visit daytonainternationalspeedway.com or call 1-800-PITSHOP.(DIS/ Team Chevy)(7-1-2015)

  • Truex Jr.’s #78 car to carry special logo at Daytona: Martin Truex Jr.’s #78 Furniture Row Chevy will carry a special logo as part of NASCAR’s Salute to Veterans at Daytona. The logo that will appear on the lower quarter panels of the #78 Chevy will be Puerto Rico’s 65th Infantry Regiment, known as the Borinqueneers, who participated in World War I, World War II, the Korean War and the War on Terror. For their distinguished service as allies of the United States, the Borinqueneers were awarded the Congressional Gold Medal by President Barack Obama on June 14, 2014. “It is our honor to celebrate the heroic contributions of our friends from Puerto Rico for their acts of bravery and fight to preserve democracy,” said Furniture Row Racing team owner Barney Visser, a U.S. Army veteran, who served in Vietnam. “To receive the Congressional Gold Medal demonstrates the highest standard of heroism and patriotism that the Borinqueneers have exemplified throughout the history of the 65th Infantry Regiment.”(FRR). See an image of the logo on the car on the #78 Team Schemes page.(7-1-2015)

  • Tommy Baldwin Racing re-signs Bowman UPDATE: Tommy Baldwin Racing has exercised its option on Alex Bowman. Bowman, 22, joined TBR at the start of the 2015 season. The driver of the #7 Nikko/Golden Corral Chevy is one of NASCAR’s rising stars. “Obviously, we have a lot of good things going on for the future,” said team owner Tommy Baldwin Jr. “We picked up his option last week. We’re real excited about what we have going on with TBR right now. We figured if we got Alex locked down and then we can work on all the necessary tools to keep climbing up the ladder.”(Motorsport)(6-28-2015)
    UPDATE: Tommy Baldwin Racing has exercised their option to keep Alex Bowman in the #7 Chevy for the 2016 season. “We’ve got some great things happening right now and the most important part of all our plans was signing Alex as early as possible,” said team owner Tommy Baldwin. “Now we can continue to focus on the rest of the parts and pieces needed to continue our forward progress.”
    “I’m excited for all the things Tommy and the team have in the works and knowing that I will be a part of that for the next year is a good feeling,” said Bowman. “This has been a good year for us and I am confident in what we can continue to do this season and next.”(TBR)
    AND the team will have Advance Auto Parts as the the sponsor on the #7 Chevy at Kentucky. See an image of the car on the #7 Team Schemes page.(7-1-2015)

  • Special DeWalt scheme for Kenseth at Daytona: DeWalt, a leading manufacturer of industrial power tools, hand tools, and accessories, announces the expansion of its initiative to make products in the USA. With this expansion, an additional 60 corded and cordless power tools are being made domestically with global materials. The expansion brings the total number of DEWALT plants in the USA to seven, where they will produce approximately 14 million products each year. The #20 Toyota of Matt Kenseth will feature a special paint scheme this weekend at Daytona celebrating the initiative.(JGR), see an image of the car on the #20 Team Schemes page.(7-1-2015)

  • Kyle Larson visits the Indianapolis Motor Speedway: Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevy for Chip Ganassi Racing, visited the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Tuesday, June 30, in advance of the Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard on Sunday, July 26. Larson drove media around the famed 2.5-mile oval in a 1994 Chevrolet Monte Carlo Pace Car from the inaugural Brickyard 400, then visited the Hall of Fame Museum for a tour with IMS historian Donald Davidson and Verizon IndyCar Series driver Scott Dixon, also of Chip Ganassi Racing.(IMS)(7-1-2015)

  • NASCAR is considering more road courses for Sprint Cup: While there’s no timetable as to when fans will see a new circuit on the schedule, the possibility is on NASCAR’s radar. Sunday’s event at Sonoma Raceway was further proof that NASCAR’s best racing is currently on road courses. But the question remains, if road courses provide some of the best venues for stock car racing why hasn’t NASCAR added more to the schedule or even considered a circuit for the Chase to the Sprint Cup? “It is something that is being considered maybe more so for a longer term basis,” NASCAR executive vice president Steve O’Donnell said on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on Tuesday. “Obviously, the schedule is full at this point but we’ve really evolved and when you look at the road course action, it’s almost on par with short tracks. These cars at the end of a race really look like they’ve been beat up and guys are getting out there and really getting after it to where I think we’re putting on the best road racing in the world. It used to be where you used to bring in three to four ringers and they would finish in the top 10. Now our guys are consistently finishing up front and have proven to be the best in the world. So we really like the progress that’s been made. It’s certainly exciting. We share in the fans’ excitement, for sure. But the teams also like the ability to have those two opportunities to win a race and achieve that spot in the Chase.” O’Donnell would not put a timeline on when fans could expect a road course race in the Chase or an additional circuit on the schedule. While he acknowledge there had been “general dialogue” with Sonoma Raceway regarding the possibility of moving the Toyota/Save Mart 350 into the playoffs, O’Donnell added that the current date for the race is “really a home run for the series”. Plus, track president Steve Page has been adamant that he doesn’t wish to go up against the NFL. “It’s really a balance for us,” O’Donnell reiterated. “But it’s something that we’re looking at.” As for expanding the 36-race schedule O’Donnell says the current number “is right for the series at this point”.(Motorsport)(7-1-2015)
  • Hill in the #26 at Daytona: JGL Racing announced that Timmy Hill will pilot the team’s #26 Toyota this Saturday night for the NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Daytona International Speedway. The 2011 NASCAR XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year joins the rising JGL Racing organization for the running of the Subway Firecracker 250 at the “World Center of Racing”. Hill will be making his 117th career start in NASCAR’s top three series. The Subway Firecracker 250 will mark his 76th career start in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. In three previous NASCAR XFINITY Series starts at Daytona, the 22-year old driver has collected two top-10 finishes. The #26 team will be led by crew chief Kenny Evans.(JGL Racing)(7-1-2015)

  • Changes made to qualifying: NASCAR announced on Wednesday revisions to its NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Keystone Light Pole qualifying procedures at all intermediate tracks. Effective immediately, qualifying on tracks 1.5 miles or longer will consist of two rounds with trucks taking one timed lap in each round. The new format will first take place at Kentucky Speedway on Thursday, July 9. “This revision puts renewed emphasis back on the pure speed of the trucks and team strategy during qualifying,” said NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Managing Director Elton Sawyer. “The trucks have unique aerodynamics at the intermediate tracks, and after discussions with drivers and teams and reviewing past qualifying sessions, we’ve found a more competitive and efficient format with the single-truck runs.” Intermediate track qualifying for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will mirror superspeedway qualifying and consists of the following:
    Two rounds of qualifying, with the top-12 fastest eligible trucks advancing to the final round;
    Trucks taking one timed lap in each round of qualifying;
    Each truck will be released in a predetermined timed interval as determined by NASCAR, with the sanctioning body reserving the right to have more than one vehicle engaging in qualifying runs at the same time;
    Qualifying order for the first round will be determined based on slowest to fastest single lap speeds posted in the first practice session; final round qualifying order is determined by slowest to fastest speeds from the first round;
    A 10-minute break will occur between the first qualifying round and the final round;
    Upon completion of the first qualifying round, the field will be set with positions 13 and beyond determined from first round qualifying speed;
    The 12 fastest vehicles from the first round will have their speeds reset for the final round with starting positions 1-12 determined by the fastest laps in the final round.(NASCAR.com)(7-1-2015)
  • MB hits 20th anniversary: Missouri-based MB Motorsports celebrates its 20th Anniversary on Wednesday, July 1. MB Motorsports is the sole surviving original team from the inaugural year of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, which began its first season in 1995. Since its first race at the Milwaukee Mile, MB Motorsports has gone on to become the only team to compete in every season of the series. In its 20-year history, MB Motorsports has hosted a “Who’s Who” of NASCAR behind the wheels of its trucks. The list includes 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Brad Keselowski and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers Carl Edwards, Justin Allgaier and Jamie McMurray, all of whom drove for the team during their young careers.(NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(7-1-2015)