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PAST NEWS JUNE 1997



    (6-30-97)

  • Todd Bodine says he will move back up into Winston Cup(or whatever it’ll be called) in 1998(6-30-97)
  • A fan wrote to the Hendrick organization asking about his condition and got back this response: “He is in the office several days a week, in fact he was in here this morning. He is doing fine at this time and we appreciate all of your prayers and thoughts they mean a great deal at this time.”; just thought we would pass it on(6-30-97)
  • Per Winston Cup Teleconference (see Nascar Online) Robby Gordon will be racing this weekend in Daytona and Greg Sacks will not be needed(6-30-97)
  • Mike Wallace is seeking sponsor support to run the BGN series on his own(6-30-97)
  • Per an article in the Easton Express-times, Easton PA. John Andretti is out of the #98 (effective July at Pocono) and the new driver will be Bobby Hillin. I have also heard in the past that RCA will not be back with the #98 team in 1998(6-30-97)
  • A reader, John, reports that he heard on the “LTN Hour” a locally produced syndicated NASCAR radio talk show, that Jack Flowers of the Speedway Scene magazine say that PPG is also a potential replacement for Winston. Supposedly PPG is in the final year of their contract with CART(6-30-97)
  • Another Geoff Bodine rumor: Dan Marino and Eddie Cheever are looking to buy into Bodines team. Marino is a spokesperson for FirstPlus and they are Cheevers sponsor on the IRL circuit and it would somehow be a joint effort(6-30-97)
  • I hear Roger Penske took a Ford Taurus to a wind tunnel test on Sunday and Monday, no news on any results(6-30-97)
  • Here is what I hear about the Ernie Irvan/Yates contract: That they have in fact signed the one year deal but Texaco is kicking up a fuss. Kenny Irwin Jr is rumored for either Ernie’s ride or a third team with Yates. Texaco likes his progression (like Gordon’s) through USAC and want him in their future. Jayski note: Plus Irwin’s sponsor on the truck series is Raybestos, who is an associate sponsor on the #28(6-30-97)(unknown)
  • I hear lighting companies are negotiating with Daytona International Speedway about installing lights, like I reported here a few months back. I hear there is a high possibility of having a night race in Daytona next July. This would of course surpass Charlotte and Texas as the largest lighted facility in the world(thanks Mark)(6-30-97)(TRUE)


    (6-29-97)

  • The Ona Speedway in West Virgina held the “Ona Speedway Race of Champions” on June 28th, attended by Ernie Irvan, Sterling Marlin, Kenny Wallace and Jeremy Mayfield. To read more about the even go to the Ona Speedway Race of Champions Page. I have heard some people had a great time, others demanded and got their money back as it became too crowded(6-29-97)
  • Wrong! Dick Trickle did race at Watkins Glen in the #64 Chevy on June 29th(6-29-97)
  • About the two day show’s instead of the three day shows: Saturday schedule: Practice, 1st round qualifying, practice, 2nd round qualifying. Sunday schedule: practice, then go racing! I hear this for tracks close to the race teams home like Darlington, Charlotte, etc(6-29-97)
  • Trans Am ace driver Ron Fellows drove the #4 James Finch owned chevy in the BGN event at Watkins Glen, Sunday, June 29th. Dale Shaw will take over full-time duties after the Glen(6-29-97)
  • I keep hearing (from a well placed source) that Kenny Irwin Jr. is in line for a WC ride at Yates. Still waiting on the announcement about Ernie signing the contract that was so well rumored a few weeks ago(6-29-97)(unknown)
  • I still hear Coke has signed Dale Jarrett but probably for 1998(6-29-97)(unknown)
  • From Norm’s Fax Service(address on my links page):Apparently technology from GM is being provided to the 24 team. It is reported that GM has spent major money with R & D with computer simulators and such. The 24 team is heading this project(6-29-97)


    (6-28-97)

  • On RPM2Nite Saturday, Andy Evans said that talks have broken off between him and Geoff Bodine for buying the #7 WC team. Evans hopes he is still under consideration. So I guess only the Rick Galles rumor is still alive(6-28-97)


    (6-27-97)

  • Sad News: Bruce Mueller, who had been with Miller Brewing Company for years and had most recently moved to Charlotte, NC and was working with On Track Marketing in Harrisburg, was killed in a car accident on Thursday, June 26th. The Concord paper reported: An accident on Morehead Road took the life of a Charlotte man Thursday evening. Bruce Andrew Mueller, 42 (wrong … should be 46), of Charlotte, was killed after his car hit two other vehicles. Mueller was driving east on Morehead Road when his vehicle crossed the center line and hit the others. The accident happened about 6pm. State Highway Patrol officers are investigating(6-27-97)
  • From NandoNet: NASCAR appears determined to break up the 30-car packs that routinely buzz around the tracks in the restrictor-plate races at Daytona and Talladega. The exact solution still is uncertain, but a change is expected to be in place in time for next year’s season-opening Daytona 500. Just do not expect that change to include the removal of the speed-reducing restrictor plates. “NASCAR wants to break the drafting up, get us back to running six- and eight-car drafts,” driver Jimmy Spencer said. “They’ve been working hard on that, trying to come up with a solution for it. I think you might see rule changes (announced) toward the end of the year for 1998(6-27-97)
  • I hear that Home Depot may be the new sponsor on the #19 Tri-Star Ford, but inside sources tell me they have not heard this(6-27-97)


    (6-26-97)

  • RPM2Nite reports Loy Allen has a one-race deal to drive the #91 Spam Chevy at Daytona. I hear thru inside sources(thanks Backdot), that Allen has been hired thru the month of July to run the car(6-26-97)
  • It seems things are in limbo with the #19 Tri-Star team and driver Gary Bradberry. Their sponsor, Child Support Recovery International is not supporting the team anymore. Not sure if they will attempt Daytona on July 5th(6-26-97)
  • Ron Hornaday has signed with Dale Earnhardt, Inc through the year 2000 as Earnhardt’s Craftmans #16 NAPA Chevy truck series driver(6-26-97)
  • Lance Norick will carry the colors of my beloved Philadelphia Flyers on his NHL sponsored truck at the NAPA AutoCare 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race June 29th(6-26-97)
  • From SpeedNet: Nice news for Rick Hendrick, “Winston Cup team owner Rick Hendrick is the first-quarter nominee for the National Motorsports Press Association Spirit Award. The award, handed out at the end of the season, recognizes sportsmanship, determination, extraordinary performance in the face of adversity, consideration for others and the promotion of motorsports. Hendrick, whose team has won the last two Winston Cup championships and runs cars for Terry Labonte, Jeff Gordon and Ricky Craven, is being treated for leukemia. Besides his contributions to the sport, Hendrick was honored for using his personal battle with the disease to increase awareness on how to become a bone marrow donor. The National Marrow Donor Program says the publicity has generated thousands of phone calls since the start of the 1997 season. Hendrick is also facing another battle. One of the biggest U.S. auto dealers, he is due in federal court later this year to face charges stemming from the Honda bribery scandal. Past winners of the Spirit Award include Davey Allison and the Allison family, Alan Kulwicki, Ernie Irvan and Dale Earnhardt(6-26-97)
  • Safety-Kleen signed up all three Hendrick cars not just Jeff Gordon as reported here last week(6-26-97)
  • I hear via SpeedWorld that the Dr J team will not buy the Geoff Bodine #7 as they wish to start their own team and have started building their own shop(6-26-97)
  • I hear Johnny Benson has been offered the 4th Roush team ride and the Yates ride(#28 which may be gone if the EI signing rumors are true)(6-26-97)
  • As rumored here before on 6-11, Dick Trickle will not be entering the Watkins Glen Busch race due to lack of financial support from Duralube for the #64 Duralube Chevy. So if anyone has $45,000 they can get a car sponsored with Dick Trickle as their driver for one-race, In-car cameras are extra contact Tim Vogel(6-26-97)
  • Other Ford rumors: Nascar as of this moment will allow the Taurus(if they use it) rear deck (trunk led) be raised 7 inches from stock to get the rear spoiler in the air and let the rear of the car be a bit wider for stability. Also the roof for the Taurus may be lowered as well(6-26-97)
  • Schedule Rumors: A second date at California was almost a certainty. Texas, may get a second date, but Bill France supposedly would want to see Texas get some things done around the track before giving it a second date(not sure what things). I hear Las Vegas reps that were at the California race have been assured of a March date and are possibly working on some sponsorship for the race(6-26-97)


    (6-25-97)

  • Robin Pemberton (Rusty Wallace crew chief) said on NASCAR Live Tuesday(6-24) night that they have built a Ford Taurus and have been working on it it for three months. He said NASCAR has been looking at it and they have made a few changes to it. But NASCAR has NOT approved the Taurus yet(6-25-97)
  • I hear the rumors that Bruton Smith is buying the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) series are false. ARCA President Ron Drager has supposedly said that will not allow the series to be sold(6-25-97)
  • I now hear that Coca Cola will not be on the #88 this year as rumored in the past. Supposedly Coke will not put anything on the #88 this year because of conflicts with Ocean Spray(Pepsi nor Coke own Ocean Spray, but Pepsi has handled the distributing since 1991) on Dale Jarrett’s BGN car(thanks Max). But supposedly the deal between Coke and DJ was signed and will be on the car in 1998(6-25-97)


    (6-24-97)

  • Mike Wallace released from the #91 team! The replacement drivers being considered so far include Bobby Hillin Jr and Loy Allen Jr. Wallace says he has some things planned for 1998 but is not at liberty to say what they are. As for 1997, he plans to run some BGN, ARCA and possibly Truck races(6-24-97)


    (6-23-97)

  • Truck News: Ron Hornaday Jr. driver of the #16 NAPA Chevy will sport a Gold paint scheme on his truck this weekend in Nazareth, PA(thanks Dave 6-23-97)
  • BGN News: James Finch has hired Dale Shaw to drive the remainder of the BGN season in the #4 Chevy. For more details go to George Campbell’s Auto Racing Page(6-23-97)
  • Nike, which may or may not be part of the Roush fourth team plans, has been very interested in a full-car sponsorship next season, but the Chevy teams the company has talked with so far aren’t willing to make that commitment(JournalNow)(6-23-97)
  • From the JournalNow: “GM’S Terry Laise says he’s not in favor of standardizing certain race-car measurement to make the new Taurus and the Monte Carlo more similar, an idea broached by Jimmy Johnson, manager of the Rick Hendrick operation. “We’re racing Monte Carlos and Grand Prix, not IROC cars,” Laise says. Laise is the aerodynamic specialist for GM, and he is particularly irked that NASCAR has seen fit to modify the Thunderbird’s roof to make it more efficient than the Monte Carlo roof, after he had to spend so much time at GM working with designers to make the production car work also as a race car. NASCAR, in effect, simply gave Ford something that GM officials had to fight over. “The trailing edge of the Thunderbird roof is 1 1/4 inches lower than it’s supposed to be,” Laise said. “That’s a tremendous advantage. It’s probably a 50 percent improvement in downforce, as well as an improvement in drag(6-23-97)
  • Another Geoff Bodine partner/buyer rumor from the JournalNow has Rick Galles, the IRL-Indy-Car owner(driver Kenny Brack) as a possible buyer, according to NASCAR sources(6-23-97)
  • Add Walt Disney to the rumored possible replacements for Winston if RJ Reynolds decides to drop out because of the lawsuit. Other’s I have heard include Pepsi, Oreo’s(RJ Reynolds/Nabisco), Nike, Bud/Busch, DuPont(thanks Eric) and McDonald’s. Jayski’s questions and thoughts: If Walt Disney takes over will WC have a race at the Mickyard in Orlando? If Winston and Reynolds leaves, forget the Winston Cup level, what happens to all the lower levels of racing that Reynold’s/Winston sponsors: Winston West, The Winston Touring Series, etc(6-23-97)
  • I hear Jack Roush confirmed his interest in adding a fourth team, but said he would likely be just a minority partner in the venture, which he declined to go into detail about(6-23-97)
  • I hear Robby Gordon’s helmet was cracked pretty badly in the practice wreak at California and the motor skill test’s included having to pick up a pencil which Robby tried and failed four times before finally picking it up and when he did he couldn’t turn his hand over and maintain his grip. Wow, that’s scarey, thank goodness he is ok(6-23-97)
  • I hear the possible second Andy Petree team will be a joint effort between Petree and his driver of the #33, Kenny Schrader with many of the crew coming from Schrader’s various teams. No news on sponsors or drivers, my guess on a # is 52(6-23-97)


    (6-22-97)

  • I hear the #23 Camel Ford will stay sponsored by Camel for the rest of the season. The contract with RJ Reynolds runs through 1998 and it is possible that Reynolds could continue support of the team with one if it’s non-tobacco brands(6-22-97)


    (6-21-97)

  • NASCAR’S Chassis Dyno tests at Michigan yielded some very interesting results. Dale Earnhardt’s engine beat Jeff Gordon’s engine by a good five horsepower throughout the power range, and Earnhardt’s Chevy motor was nearly as strong as Bill Elliott’s Ford engine(JournalNow 6-21-97)
  • JournalNow: The News may not be good on the Rick Hendrick front. “Rick hasn’t been to work all week,” says Jimmy Johnson, manager of Hendrick’s stock-car empire. ”And for Rick to miss work like that, well, I’m worried.” Hendrick was diagnosed with leukemia last fall(6-21-97)
  • Dale Earnhardt Jr. will race 6-29-97 in the Lysol 200 Busch Series race at Watkins Glen, NY. The younger Earnhardt will attempt to qualify a #31 Dale Earnhardt Inc. Chevrolet for the race(6-21-97)
  • According to NASCAR sources, MRN’s Alan Bestwick may be the new CBS announcer of the Daytona 500 in 1998, no idea if this would include other CBS races(6-21-97)
  • Multicar Team Mania: I hear Jack Roush is planning on expanding his stable to Four teams in 1998, one driver in the rumor mill is the white hot Kenny Irwin(JournalNow-6-21-97)
  • Multicar Team Mania II: The JournalNow also reports that Andy Petree is negotiating for a second Winston Cup team next season. No news on a driver or sponsor(Jayski note: all these mutlicar teams could spell trouble for the smaller teams)(6-21-97)
  • I hear two rumors about the Dr. J team: 1) Tim Brewer, recently parted from the #4 Morgan-McClure team may be in line to help the Dr. J team get started and 2) Inside sources tell me that Geoff Bodine sold his team to Erving-Washington and will continue as driver for the next three years(6-21-97)
  • I also hear Tim Brewer may attempt to start his own truck team(6-21-97)


    (6-20-97)

  • Robby Gordon injured in a practice accident at California Speedway and will not race in the IROC or WC race this weekend. Gordon demolished the team’s primary car after losing control in Turn 2. Afterward, he was disoriented and failed a motor-skills test. He was taken to Loma Linda University Medical Center for a CAT scan, which showed nothing wrong. He may be out for up to a month. Greg Sacks will sub for Gordon in the #40 Coors Lite Chevy and Bobby Labonte will sub in the IROC series. The car Gordon crashed had a different color scheme on it then usual, more yellow with blue numbers(6-20-97)
  • WC rookie David Green won the pole for the Winston West race, and Ken Schrader qualified third. In between was West regular Gary Smith. Only 26 cars will be in the race Saturday(6-20-97). Kenny Schrader won, Green was third and Mike Wallace was second
  • Terry Labonte is still in the #5 Kelloggs Frosted Flakes Chevy, should be back in the regular Kelloggs colors back in Daytona(6-20-97)
  • The response from Ford to the #8 saying they don’t get fair treatment: Preston Miller, the head of Ford’s engineering staff, denied that some teams are receiving preferential treatment. He said the problem stems from Ford’s expected move from the Thunderbird to the Taurus for next season, a change that has drivers nervous and is keeping Ford’s engineers busy(6-20-97)
  • The JournalNow story about Ford, Jeff Gordon and F1 has been found. See it at NASCAR Notebook(6-20-97)
  • Word from the Bud Moore camp here in Spartanburg is that the deal with K.C. Spurlock is off. No reason given at this time. About 5 employees currently remain working at BME full time. If nothing happens this year they will be ready for 1998. Work being done on a car for Daytona complete with race ready motor(6-20-97)


    (6-19-97)

  • OK Folks enough with the Jeff Gordon stuff. I had some rumors up about Gordons’s team possible running with illegal parts, I have heard from some NASCAR people who have told me that the illegal parts rumors are FALSE! I am not bashing Gordon by reporting the rumors and did not ‘sell out’ by removing them, just reporting to you what I have heard(6-19-97)
  • Two-time ARCA champion Tim Steele plans to be at the testing session for the Brickyard driving the #61 HS Die Ford Thunderbird powered by an Ernie Elliott engine(NASCAR Fans & David 6-19-97)
    Ward Burton will be running a special MBNA paint scheme on the #22 Pontiac this weekend for with Anaheim Mighty Ducks Logo on the car(6-19-97)
  • As reported here before, RPM2Nite mentioned Geoff Bodine is close to selling his team to either Sports Car(IMSA) Andy Evans or the Dr. J Erving-Washington team. The stipulation is that Bodine get a three year contract as the driver, not sure on sponsorship(6-19-97)
  • As reported here before(5-24-97); and Per WC Scene: BGN Rookie driver Jimmy Foster, #11 Speedvision car , reportedly will drive the BGN Ford owned by the Dr.J team. While a driver has not been named for the team’s WC ride, Geoff Bodine’s team may be it(6-19-97)
  • I hear potential sponsors for DW 2-car team include Snapple and KFC/Pepsi, supposedly Bickle will race the Brickyard 400 with KFC as the sponsor(6-19-97)


    (6-18-97)

  • Hendrick News: Lawyers for Winston Cup team owner Rick Hendrick have asked for a 60-day postponement of his trial on charges stemming from the American Honda bribery scandal. Hendrick, battling leukemia, is to stand trial beginning Aug. 11 in Asheville, NC. Hendrick, one of the nation’s biggest car dealers, was indicted last December on charges of conspiracy, mail fraud and money laundering in connection with alleged bribes to Honda executives in exchange for more cars to sell at his dealerships. Dr. Steven Limentani, a cancer specialist, says it would be “medically impossible” for Hendrick to stand trial in August. He said the side effects of Hendrick’s therapy would make it impossible for him to withstand such an ordeal. Meanwhile, Hendrick’s lawyers have also petitioned federal prosecutors to move the trial to Charlotte, N.C., near the team owner’s home. The prosecutors have insisted the trial be held in Asheville, saying that an Asheville-area car dealer was the victim of illicit business practices by Hendrick(6-18-97)
  • Richmond International Raceway has released an updated version of the free “Fan Friendly Guide” that lists available lodging. To receive a guide mail a self-addressed, business size envelope pre-posted with $.78 postage to Fan Friendly Guide, Richmond International Raceway, PO Box 9257, Richmond, VA. 23227(SpeedNet)(6-18-97)
  • Robby Gordon is at the California Speedway and will drive both WC and IROC this weekend. He says he will drive for SABCO for the rest of the year, at least. He will wear a special shield to protect his burns, which he still has a 3rd degree burn about the size of a half-dollar on his leg(6-18-97)
  • Gary Bradberry and the #19 CSRI Tri-Star Ford will not be at the California race this weekend. Due to the unexpected financial hardships of primary sponsor, Child Support Recovery International, Tri Star will be unable to make the trip west. Future races for his team depend on sponsorship(6-18-97)
  • Tom Ochs is the new crew chief for the BGN #11 Speedvision/Outdoor Life Networks Key Motorsports Ford driven by Jimmy Foster. Ochs takes over for Mike Yoder(6-18-97)
  • I hear Rich Bickle’s 1998 sponsor for the #17 DW owned Chevy will be a beverage company of some sort, but I don’t know who. I also hear that Bickle will run the Brickyard 400 this year with KFC as the sponsor and possible a few other races in a second DW car to gear up for the 1998 season. Plus he is building his own shop and may have his own BGN and/or Truck team in 1998(6-18-97)


    (6-17-97)

  • Effective Immediately, Tim Brewer let go from the #4 Morgan McClure team as crew chief. Bob Larkins has been promoted to interim crew chief. Supposedly Marlin had no idea this was happening and didn’t find out until Tuesday by fax that McClure and Brewer had decided to mutually part(6-17-97)
  • Lake Speed will be driving the #9 Melling Ford at California Speedway this weekend, not Jeff Davis as reported earlier, no idea of sponsorship(6-17-97)
  • Many GM team and the GM manufactures really want rules changes. I hear that in Pontiac’s News and Quotes release on Sunday, every quote that mentioned needed rules changes was underlined. The Chevy equivalent also had quite a few negative NASCAR comments. It is doubtful they will make any rules changes until after the July 5th Daytona race, expect Ford to lose something and GM cars to stay the same(6-17-97)
  • On the Lowe’s chat series 6-16-97, Ted Musgrave said “Rumors are not valid. I’m staying with Roush and I’m very happy”(6-17-97)
  • I hear Mike Wallace is in jeopardy of losing the Spam ride. Not sure how true this is but I hear the team has to give back $30,000 every time they miss a race, yikes!(6-17-97)
  • I hear the #24 will pick up Safety-Kleen(a major fluid recycling company) as an associate sponsor. Many teams (#’s 3,4,8,10,17,21,22,23,41,43,75,77,94) carry their “We Care” stickers and now Gordon will also either at California or Daytona(not sure about the other 2 teams)(6-17-97)


    (6-16-97)

  • NASCAR took the #94, #24 and the #3 and put them on Chassis Dyno after the race, no idea on the results. It was also rumored that NASCAR would be taking the cars to the GM or Ford Wind Tunnel for more tests(6-16-97)
  • Per the JournalNow: NASCAR may be announcing the 1998 WC schedule earlier than expected this summer, because car owners will need to brace their sponsors for another $500,000 increase in sponsorship fees(Jayski note: what is this? this should help the smaller team(NOT)) Supposedly there be 3 new races added to next year’s schedule, according to NASCAR sources, for a total of 35 regular-season points events, in addition to the Busch Clash, the Winston All-Star race and the Suzuka exhibition. I hear two of the three races could be at Texas and California with the third going to Las Vegas, no news on Homestead(6-16-97)
  • I hear Nike will sponsor a Busch North car during either the July 12 or Sept 13 New Hampshire Busch North race. This is to test market some paint schemes for very little sponsorship money in preperation for Nike’s full-time WC involvement in 1998(6-16-97)
  • I hear the special McDonald’s car #94 will be all blue with the moon character on one side of the hood with the “M” on the other side of the hood. I hear the picture is on a box of Raisin Bran, I haven’t seen it(6-16-97)


    (6-15-97)

  • TNN’s Inside NASCAR showed the new paint scheme of the Dale Earnhardt #3 today and it is being run today at Michigan, the difference I see is a big red “Plus” in script on the hood and on the lower rear of the quarter panels. Not sure if this is permanent or just a one race deal(6-15-97)
  • More JournalNow: Geoff Bodine has agreed to sell part of his financially hard-pressed team to an unnamed according to NASCAR sources. Bodine has talked with Julius Erving about such a deal, but it was unclear yesterday if Erving might be involved in Bodine’s latest move(see my story from 6-14)(6-15-97)
  • Terry Labonte will also run the Frosted Flakes paint scheme at California per Inside NASCAR(TNN) but ESPNs NASCAR2Day said it was just 6-15 at Michigan(6-15-97)
  • Also if Robby Gordon isn’t back next season driving for Felix Sabates, then Sterling Marlin is on Sabates’ list of possible replacements, according to NASCAR sources(JournalNow)(6-15-97)
  • The Area Auto Racing News out of Trenton, NJ reports this week in Monte Dutton’s Winston Cup Series News that Bruton Smith has made an offer to Ron Drager to buy ARCA but sources close to Drager say he does not want to sell. The rumor also says if Smith does buy that Doyle Ford would be named to head ARCA. It was also said that Smith is trying to put together his own point fund for his tracks and much of this hinges on putting a TV deal together with the FOX Network(6-15-97)


    (6-14-97)

    Junie Donlavey, owner of the #90 Helig Meyers Ford driven by Dick Trickle will his 750th start as a NASCAR Winston Cup Series car owner this weekend at Michigan, wouldn’t a win be nice(6-14-97)
  • Another reason that Action has pulled all Terry Labonte cars is because Terry
    was one of the first drivers to join Kyle Petty’s Hot Wheels collection(6-14-97)
  • I’m hearing the reported changes to the 3 car involve a paint scheme identical
    to the new Goodwrench drag team (Warren Johnson?) It is very similar except the logo is “Plus” and it is written in script not print(6-14-97)
  • Two conflicting Robby reports:1) Supposedly Felix Sabates thinks Robby has already signed a deal to drive for Team Kool Green(CART) and that is why he is not being straight with Sabates. Felix’s problem with this deal is he has already paid Robby upfront for the whole 1997 season. Supposedly Robby has already had his lawyer contact Felix about how they can break his contract(6-14-97)
  • And from the JournalNow: “Robby Gordon will possibly be back in action next week at California, says Robin Pemberton, crew chief for Rusty Wallace and a good friend of Gordon’s. ”I had lunch with him a couple days ago, and he hopes so,” Pemberton said. ”But I saw those burns. They’re terrible.” Gordon suffered burns in last month’s Indianapolis 500. However, Gordon may be in one of Roger Penske’s IROC cars for Round 3 of that series, instead of Felix Sabates’ Winston Cup car at Penske’s new track. Sabates says he doesn’t expect Gordon to get back in one of his stock cars for several more weeks. But Sabates yesterday left open the possibility that Gordon may drive in next Saturday’s IROC event. Gordon’s future in stock-car racing has been a topic of debate. But next season Gordon may be back on the Indy-car circuit running a Brown and Williamson car under the Kool logo, according to Indy-car sources”. Hmm…what to think??(6-14-97)
  • Rumor has it that Don Miller, part owner of #2 Penske South Miller Lite Ford and team manager may step down after the 1997 season(6-14-97)
  • I hear in 6-14-97’s ARCA race at Michigan, Perry Tripp ran a R&D Chevy SB2 engine for RCR. I heard the horsepower is much better than the current chevy engine but unlike reported in the past it did just fire on the fuel mileage(6-14-97)
  • This weeks NSSN(6-11-97) reports that there are rumors that Geoff Bodine may be close to selling his team to Road Racing, Indy Car and Drag Racing team owner Andy Evans(6-14-97)
  • I hear is that ARCA driver Jimmy Kitchins, who drives the #47 KC Racing Ford and his team are planning to move up to a part time WC deal in 1998(6-14-97)


    (6-13-97)

  • Rick Baldwin, who crashed during qualifying for the June, 1986 Winston Cup race at Michigan and was in a coma ever since, died Thursday. He was 42. Just a few weeks ago, Winston Cup Scene did a fantastic story on Baldwin and how his family was coping with his condition(AP)(6-13-97)
  • Miller 400 Oddities from the AP: Jerry Nadeau, the 13th driver to attempt to qualify on Friday the 13th, crashed. In other qualifying coincidences, three identical speeds were posted. Mike Skinner and Dick Trickle shared a speed of 181.420 mph. Dale Earnhardt and Chad Little both qualified at 181.182 mph, while Lake Speed and Ed Berrier shared 180.950 mph. The nod was given to the drivers who ranked higher in the point standings. The winner has come from the first five rows in 49 of the 55 Winston Cup races at Michigan and the polesitter has won 13 times; The furthest back that an eventual winner has started at Michigan is 24th(Harry Gant/1992)(6-13-97)
  • Robby Gordon may miss more races as he ended up in the emergency room of a Charlotte, NC, hospital this week because of pain in his burned leg. He could be out until the Pepsi 400 on 7-5-97 at Daytona. Gordon has of course missed Dover, Pocono, Michigan and now could miss the California race next week and the IROC race(6-14-97)
  • Had a few folks ask about Jimmy Means and what he is doing. He is acting as a consultant for the #77 Lear/UAW team and Jeff McClure(6-13-97)
  • Hardee’s will be an associate sponsor on the #74 BGN Chevy of Randy LaJoie(6-13-97)
  • New Look for the #3? Word from a NASCAR insider is that the Goodwrench team is looking at a slight design change. The overall look will remain the same, but the fonts and lettering could change somewhat. We will have more on this as it come
    available. At this point we are unsure which race it will be in effect and
    if it is a permanent change or not(NASCAR Fans Site). I hear Action Performance is going to do some more Earnhardt diecast cars this year(6-13-97)
  • I goofed on the IROC race when reporting Robby Gordon probably wouldn’t race in this weeks IROC at Michigan. Well there is no IROC race this weekend. The third race is at California next week and the Michigan race (fourth) is 7-27-97(Sunday), sorry for the goof. FYI: The Charlotte IROC race will be shown on ABC at 5pm(edt) on Sunday(6-13-97)
  • More news on the Terry Labonte diecast thing: Action produced a 3-pack of champions for Mac Tools to be sold by their distributors. The three cars were: 1)Kenny Bernstein/Budweiser 2) John Force/Castrol and 3) Terry Labonte/Kellogg’s. I hear that Kellogg’s were not made aware of the packaging of this product and were not happy about being associated with Budweiser. Evidently, they have broken all ties with Action/RCCA(6-13-97)
  • And more: The word is that the Labonte program was on hold. However, The new Revell list has both the Labonte regular and Frosted Flakes car scheduled for release this quarter. Revell’s shipping info has been MUCH more accurate than Action/RCCA from what I hear. For instance RaceStuff is still waiting on
    some items that were originally scheduled for April Delivery. By Monday, they should be taking preorders on both Frosted Flakes and standard Labonte 1/24 items. Also only Revell will be producing the “Top Dog” Micheal Waltrip and the Ernie Irvan Coke 600 car(Texaco stations are offering the 10th Anniversary Car/Bank for $23.95)(6-13-97)
  • And…the Action and Labonte licensing problem has to do with the Suzuka car that Action produced late last year. Apparrently there was a particular decal that Labonte didn’t want displayed on the diecast(don’t know what) and Action went ahead with production despite his request. As a result, Labonte has terminated any agreements with Action and also reportedly Racing Champions and has signed an exclusive deal with Revell to produce his diecasts(6-13-97) ok enough..
  • USA Today Story: ” McDonald’s calls very premature any speculation that its decision to end sponsorship of Joe Gibbs’ NHRA team after this season is a sign the company has its eye on a McDonald’s Cup series should RJ Reynolds and NASCAR part company. We felt like we needed to bring more to the table with NASCAR, said David Paro, McDonald’s sports alliances director. We gave up a lot with our NHRA relationships, but with NASCAR’s geographical growth, we felt we needed to focus our communication and resources in that direction.” Not sure what this means for Bill Elliott in 1998(6-13-97)
  • Hearing more rumors that Penske may start a second team but not until 1998 and Kenny Irwin, Jr is still the rumor there(6-13-97)
  • Nike could be looking for a deal much like McDonalds has with multiple race
    teams. McDonalds as you know spans not only Winston Cup but into other series as well such as NHRA(not in 1998). Look for Nike to do something along these lines(NASCAR Fans Site)(6-13-97)
    AP Story from Nando Net: Sterling Marlin has dismissed the rumors that he will leave Morgan-McClure Racing at the end of this season. The two-time Daytona 500 winner, in the first year of a five-year contract extension, says he will stay in the #4 Chevy, which he has driven since 1994. Speculation had been that Marlin would replace Ernie Irvan at Robert Yates Racing. Reports are still circulating that Irvan will leave Yates to take a ride with Gary Bechtel’s Diamond Ridge Racing(6-13-97)
  • To update the Lake Speed situation a little bit. Jeff Davis, who is in California is looking at putting a similar deal together with Melling like the one he had at Sonoma last month. Ultra-Shield would again be the sponsor(6-13-97)
  • I also hear the Moore/Spurlock deal with the #15 team is close to being finalized again. Ultra-Shield is working out the details of a full-year of sponsorship for Spurlock(6-13-97)
  • More news from the Benny Parson’s radio racing show that DW may be signing a 3 year deal with a sponsor that will allow him to continue racing. He says he is having too much fun to quit. Also, it would be a two car team as Rich Bickle is signed and with a sponsor for full time next year(6-13-97)


    (6-12-97)

  • Jeff Gordon tested a new DuPont Chevy at Daytona on 6-11-97, to replace the car that he won the Daytona 500 with. The Daytona 500 car is now a part of an exhibit at Daytona USA. Gordon bettered his pole time for last years Firecracker 400 in July 1996 with a speed of 189.076 (NASCAR Fans Site)(6-12-97)


    (6-11-97)

  • Congratulations to Joe Nemechek on the birth of his son 6-11-97, named John Hunter after his late brother(6-11-97)
  • Jerry Nadeau will apply and run for Rookie Of The Year(ROTY) with the #1 Pontiac team. There are plenty of races for him to catch Skinner. Nice interview on RPM2Nite with Nadeau(6-11-97)
  • As reported earlier, confirmed 6-11-97, Robby Gordon will not race at Michigan this weekend, Greg Sacks will replace him in the #40 Coors Lite Chevy, Sacks will not race in the #45 BGN car at South Boston, VA, ASA Driver Brad Loney will take his place. Gordon wanted to try Michigan but Doctors advised him against it, he plans on running the Napa 500 at California 6-22-97(6-11-97)
  • Shoemaker Racing, BGN #64 and Dick Trickle are seeking additional funding to help complete it’s successful season. Currently 5th in owner points, Shoemaker is seeking two or three additional sponsors in order to complete the season. Dick Trickle will continue to drive the #64 but the word is there may not be a Watkins Glen event for the team. Not enough money to stay on the track and stay competitive(6-11-97)
  • Per the JournalNow: The Hut Stricklin #8 Circuit City Ford team feels ignored by Ford, GM Richard Broome says automotive company only cares about Roush, Penske and Yates(adds fuel to the rumor I reported a few weeks back that the team would move to Chevy in 1998)(6-11-97)
  • I hear from a collectible dealer: As of one week ago RCCA has canceled ALL orders involving #5 Terry Labonte. The only explanation given is it involves licensing problems. Problem only involves Terry and not Jeff or Ricky, anyone have any ideas about this(6-11-97)
  • I checked out the chat at Barnes and Noble with Paul Hemphill, the author of WHEELS and most of the questions were fluff. One reader asked about the author stating that Marlin was in a Ford when the Earnhardt-Irvan-Marlin wreak happened at Talladega last year and that Alan Kuwicki drove for Robert Yates and the Mr Hemphill said he stands by his facts(what facts). These are blantant errors, but I hear it is an entertaining book. He never answered my question: When did AK drive for Yates?(6-11-97)
  • Here is a new one, heard that Michael Waltrip will be leaving the #21 Citgo Ford after 1997? Anyone else? Possibly to the #43 if Hamilton leaves(6-11-97)
  • Heard a rumor (and nothing more then a rumor at this point) Jeff Burton is talking up Ward to Jack Roush as a possible replacement for Ted Musgrave in the third Touch entry next year , with Musgrave, from what I’m told , almost definitely gone from that ride next season, and in the hunt for the Doctor J. team(6-11-97)
  • According to sources in the garage area, ARCA officials have told Smith they will sell if he can get NASCAR approval, which is unlikely. If Smith should purchase the ARCA Series, it would give him his own race officials should he decide to start a rival series. It would also give him the capacity to run a non-sanctioned race with Winston Cup drivers at his Texas track later this year. Smith has been asking Bill France for a second Texas date this season, but France refuses to budge. According to sources, Smith has threatened to run a second race at Texas the week most Winston Cup teams are in Japan for the second Suzuka Thunder 100(6-11-97)
  • Have heard many WILD rumors about Jeff Gordon looking at the F1 Williams ride in 1998, but I doubt this would happen(see story below)(6-11-97)


    (6-10-97)

  • Junior Johnson isn’t spending all of his time on his Yadkin County farm. He has bought an oceanfront home in Charleston, SC(JournalNow)(6-10-97)
  • For the third race in a row, Rusty Wallace and the #2 Lite team will lease engines from former Ranier/Walsh engine builder Larry Wallace(no relation) for Michigan. They are hoping to give Penske engine builder, Mike Enge some time to figure where the team is losing horsepower and hope to have an Enge engine back in the car for California(6-10-97)
  • McDonald’s will not renew sponsorship of Joe Gibbs NHRA team for 1998, I hear they may leave NASCAR as a primary sponsor also(6-10-97)
  • I hear Geoff Bodine should be making an announcement in a week or two. No details because it isn’t final, but I hear it will make the team stronger in all areas
    including “marketing”(6-10-97)
  • I hear Coke will finally come on board with the #88 car as an associate sponsor either at Michigan or California(6-10-97)


    (6-9-97)

  • Jerry Nadeau is Shepherd’s replacement in the #1 R&L Carriers/Crusin’ America Pontiac. I assume Nadeau will apply for ROTY. Nadeau finished fourth and second in the May ARCA races at Charlotte after challenging for the lead in both. Nadeau’s
    experience in a variety of different racing series, including the BGN series, Formula Opel European Union Series and the Barber Pro Series(6-9-97)
  • Robert Pressley replaces Jeff Fuller in the 47 BGN ride but is still looking for a WC ride(6-9-97)
  • George from Georges NASCAR Page tells me he listened to the Fabulous Sports Babe 6-9-97 and Dr J was on. He
    talked briefly about his new racing team. he said his partner will be doing most of the work, and they are currently looking for a couple people to run the operations. Dr J will keep a very low profile, as he is very busy with his new position with the Orlando Magic BB team(6-9-97)
  • Jeremy Mayfield had a new chassis at Pocono(and the same one at Charlotte) on 6-8-97, an in-house design the crew has worked on all spring, not sure when they plan on using it again(6-9-97)
  • At Pocono(June) Geoff Bodine was forced to a backup motor by Peter Guild and Travis Carter, when he blew his primary engine(6-9-97)
  • Per NASCAR Fan Site Newsletter: According to Don Hawk, who has been negotiation with Nike for more than a year your can look for Dale Earnhardt, Rusty Wallace or Dale Jarrett to get part of the Nike action before Jeff Gordon does(6-9-97)
  • More NASCAR Fans Site: Looks like more than one series in interested in the talents of Young Jeff Gordon. Yesterday in an interview here is what Gordon had to say. “We had some F1 guys here today from Williams,” Gordon revealed after his decisive win in the 3 1/2 -hour race under mostly cloudy and cool skies. “I’ve had some people approach me on some different things, but I like Winston Cup, and I love driving for Rick Hendrick, and I’ve got a great situation here. And I’m making enough money that I’m very happy.” “don’t have any complaints. I’ve got great sponsors. So, unless something started to change, I don’t know why I would want to pursue that.”(6-9-97)


    (6-8-97)

  • It’s official: Morgan Shepherd out of the #1 and to the #77 Jasper Ford, no idea where Bobby Hillin will end up, have not heard a thing(6-8-97)


    (6-7-97)

  • More news on the #4 James Finch owned BGN Team and Dale Shaw at Georges NASCAR Page
  • I hear Jeff Fuller may get a shot as driver of the #4 BGN car in the near future(6-7-97)
  • SpeedNet Story: The hottest rumor in the garage area this week is that Bruton Smith is trying to buy the ARCA Series to give his empire its own sanctioning body. Smith already owns five race tracks, including Charlotte, Atlanta and Texas, and is aggressively pursuing the purchase of others. According to sources in the garage area, ARCA officials have told Smith they will sell if he can get NASCAR approval, which is unlikely. If Smith should purchase the ARCA Series, it would give him his own race officials should he decide to start a rival series. It would also give him the capacity to run a non-sanctioned race with Winston Cup drivers at his Texas track later this year. Smith has been asking Bill France for a second Texas date this season, but France refuses to budge. According to sources, Smith has threatened to run a second race at Texas the week most Winston Cup teams are in Japan for the second Suzuka Thunder 100(6-7-97)
  • Bobby Hamilton says he has not talked to anyone concerning 1998 and that includes the King. He adds he would listen if someone throws a gob of cash his way, but expects to be back in the #43 STP Pontiac(6-7-97)
  • During last weeks CART race at Milwaukee the announcers said that Robby Gordon was the prime candidate to become Parker Johnstone’s teammate and will drive the second Team KOOL Green car in 1998(6-7-97)
  • The Charlotte Observer of 6-7-97 has quotes from Sterling saying he’s staying with Morgan-McClure. Also, Larry McClure said on NASCAR Today the other day that he has
    had potential sponsors approach him about a 2nd team(6-7-97)


    (6-6-97)

  • Wes Ward has decided not to move up with Jeff Green to become crew chief of the #29 WC car and will assume the crew chief job with Dale Jarretts #32 BGN Ford team(6-6-97)
  • The new #81 WC new crew chief is Newt Moore and the new Shop Foreman is Andy Johnson(6-6-97)
  • Jeff Fuller was released from the #47 Sunoco BGN Chevy and that Robert Pressley will replace him at South Boston(6-6-97)
  • Per RPM2Nite: The Richard Jackson-owned #1 Pontiac team will have R&L Carriers as their sponsor for the remainder of 1997(6-6-97)
  • Real Life Stuff!! Jon Sands, who handles media relations for Robby Gordon, is counting on a miracle. Sands’ son, Lane, was born last week with a herniated diaphragm, a condition that had life-threatening effects on the baby’s heart and
    lungs. “He’s a fighter,” said Sands, adding Lane was taken off of a
    respirator Monday. Words of encouragement can be sent through Team SABCO,
    114 Meadow Hill Circle, Mooresville, N.C., 28115(Info courtesy of NASCAR Fans Site & Von), take a minute and send a card(6-6-97)
  • Thanks to a NASCAR insider for clarifying the Elliott Paint Scheme. The actual paint schemes will be representitive of the “MAC TONIGHT” program. The car will be metallic blue with stars ad the mac tonight character across the hood(Thanks NASCAR Fans Site)(6-6-97)
  • Because Dale Jarrett lost his voice last Friday night(5-30-97) Pat Frossard from Racing Radios installed a tiny amplifier into Jarrett’s helmet microphone on Sunday morning. It helped the team hear Jarrett’s gravelly voice during the race. The amplifier costs about twenty bucks and was developed by Jack Babb(6-6-97)
  • Heard from that Texaco wants Sterling Marlin in the car but Robert Yates is fighting to keep Ernie(6-6-97)
  • Add Kenny Wallace to the #28 rumors(6-6-97)


    (6-5-97)

  • Sterling Marlin says he and Larry McClure sat down and cleared the air and that he is staying in the #4 Kodak Chevy, he is on the first year of a five year deal. I Morgan-McClure is talking two car team again(6-5-97)
  • Bill Elliott will run another special Batman paint scheme in the #94 McDonald’s car, not sure when(6-5-97)
  • I hear Morgan Shepherd may leave the #1 car for the #77(6-5-97) TRUE


    (6-3-97)

  • Interview with Felix Sabates on NASCAR COM. Here are the main points: “I live with one simple philosophy. If anyone wants to leave, sayonara. I don’t want to lose any of my drivers. I know Yates has been after Wally. I know this new team that’s starting up is after Wally. Yates is after Robby. He wants to swap with Ernie. I wouldn’t swap (for Ernie). Besides that, if I got Ernie, I would have to switch to Ford or either buy my own stuff because I don’t think Ernie would be driving a General Motors-sponsored car. Greg Sacks will drive Robby’s car at Pocono unless he (Sacks) goes to drive the 77 car. He’s talking to the 77 car. If Sacks gets in the 77, I don’t have a lot of choices.” Go to the story for much more(6-3-97)
  • More SABCO News: Sacks will replace Gordon for Pocono and possibly at Michigan, depends on if Gordon needs a skin graft on his burn. Dallenbach will run all the races except Dover in Sept and the second New Hampshire race. Felix Sabates will not attempt any more IRL races(hint-IRL cars for sale!)(6-3-97)
  • As I expected, Junior Johnson has no interest in returning to NASCAR(6-3-97)
  • I hear from a great source, that Bud Moore has three sponsors talking to him, Ford is telling Moore to chose which one he wants so they can channel the other two to Geoff Bodine and Lake Speed. Supposedly Geoff gets the second pick in this deal. All with help from Ford. Jayski note:Folks I have no idea who any of the sponsors are at this time(6-3-97)
  • From the NASCAR Fans E-mail List: Word from a NASCAR insider is that Bud Moore expects to run the Brickyard 400 with a driver to be named only after sponsor approval. The drivers in consideration are Elton Sawyer and Scott Bloomquist. The K.C. Spurlock deal is still on with some details still left to be worked out(6-3-97)


    (6-2-97)

  • Jeff Green signed up for the Rookie of the Year program at Dover, so he’s on it as of now and is included on my ROTY section.(6-2-97)
  • A BGNN team, Verres Racing, have fabricated a NASCAR Winston cup car and have it registered and received #67 to run in 3 Winston Cup races this season, 2 at NHIS and one race at Watkins Glen. They intend to enter a Monte Carlo for BGNN driver Glenn Brehio(not Richard Messier). Check out the full story at: Verres Racing Page. I have mentioned this as a rumor in the past(thanks to Ian Berry for this info)(6-2-97)
  • Per JournalNow: NASCAR officials have told WC teams that GM’s new SB2 engine will be legal for competition next season, but Ford teams are still wondering what their own company may come back with for NASCAR to consider. Will Ford be willing to accept certain modifications by NASCAR for the proposed racing Taurus in exchange for GM getting the SB2, or will Ford want its own new engine(6-2-97)
  • Nike officials have been meeting at length with NASCAR officials about a major new sponsorship program on the Winston Cup tour, and indications are that one of the first off-shoots could be some ”Air Gordons” on store shelves. Dale Earnhardt has been trying hard for more than a year to land a Nike deal, but Nike seems to be leaning toward Gordon because he’s much younger, according to sources close to the situation. Nike officials also have been looking at plans for a full Winston Cup team, and they’re willing to spend as much as $8 million on the venture. But Nike has turned down a NASCAR pitch from Julius Erving (who wore Converse). Erving now might be leaning toward a Pepsi or Coca-Cola sponsorship for his new team(another story from the JournalNow by Mike Mulhearn)(6-2-97)
  • Cummins Engine Company and Bosch(sparkplugs) have extended their contracts with The Valvoline Company through the year 2000. The contract extensions mean that the associate sponsors on the #6 Valvoline Roush owned Thunderbird driven by Mark Martin will be with the team for the next 3 seasons. Valvoline announced in April that they had extended its contract with Roush Racing through the year 2000(6-2-97)
  • Petty Enterprises adds second truck team Seven-time NASCAR Winston Cup Series champion Richard Petty announced that his NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series team would run a second Dodge Ram in at least five races with major sponsorship from Touch 1 Inc., a communications company headquartered in Atmore, Ala., for 1988 NASCAR Winston Cup Rookie of the Year Ken Bouchard of Fitchburg, MA. Their first race was at 6-6-97’s race at Texas(6-2-97)
  • I hear Bud Moore has a sponsor, in fact he has a choice between a couple of deals. Look for announcement in the next week or so to announce his sponsor and driver(supposedly Larry Pearson). From what I hear K.C. Spurlock is not a part of this deal, I have no idea what happened with that deal(6-2-97)
  • The 1998 WC schedule won’t be released until Labor Day but a report in the JournalNow is that the unofficial word in the garage now is that Darlington and Rockingham will both lose a 1998 Winston Cup date, that Las Vegas and Homestead will be added to the schedule(personally, I can’t imagine them taking a race from Darlington)(6-2-97)
  • The JournalNow reports that SABCO saga of Robby Gordon has become a little stranger with word that Gordon has been out on the water in a ski boat the last few days, despite his Indy burns. There are indications now that his burns aren’t as severe as have been reported, that he in fact might take his Indy-car team to Texas this week instead of returning to SABCO. Coors officials have had meetings about how to handle things if Gordon decides to drop WC. It is unclear who SABCO and Coors might pick to drive their car if Gordon doesn’t return. Rumors list Elliott Sadler, Mike Bliss and Greg Sacks(6-2-97)-The Water Skiing thing was FALSE


    (6-1-97)

  • Primary sponsor QVC has given Geoff Bodine permission to leave the #7 Ford quarterpanels bare in an effort to attract another sponsor(5-29-97). As you saw QVC was on the quarter panels of the car(6-1-97)
  • Morgan Shepherd, Greg Sacks and Robert Pressley lead the rumors as the new #77 driver(6-1-97) Shepherd TRUE
  • I hear that NASCAR are looking at the possibility of using Kevlar-backed Fiberglas panels for use on WC cars(6-1-97)