March 2003 CTS Archive


  • Tina Gordon to run Talladega Busch race: CTS driver Tina Gordon announced plans today to compete in the Aaron’s 312 Busch Series race on April 5, 2003, at Talladega Superspeedway. Gordon, driver of the #31 Microtel Inns Dodge in the Truck Series, will drive the #22 Sticks n Stuff Chevrolet for Bost Motorsports next week. Gordon is looking forward to the chance to return to her home track next weekend in a Busch car. “I am really excited about being able to race at Talladega Superspeedway. Talladega has always been a special track to me. I am glad to be bale to have the opportunity to gain more experience and valuable seat time on a Superspeedway,” said Gordon. “It is great to be able to race in a series like the NASCAR Busch Series at Talladega, especially with it being my home track.” Team owner Danny Bost feels very good about having Tina Gordon in the seat next week. “We are really looking forward to having Tina drive for us at Talladega. She has had some strong Superspeedway runs and we feel like we have a solid car for Talladega that will give her the chance to show her abilities in the Busch Series.” Added Bost, “I think there will be some eyes opened to Tina and this team next weekend. I can’t wait to get there.” The #22 Bost Motorsports entry has been building momentum all season. They have competed in all five Busch series races so far and are currently 30th in owner points for the 2003 season. The team crew chief is Matt Groeschl and uses engines from T&L Engine Development. Longtime supporter of Tina Gordon, Sticks n Stuff, will be the primary sponsor of the #22 entry. Gordon is thrilled at their return. “Sticks n Stuff has been a great sponsor with me in the ARCA/REMAX Series at Daytona and Talladega. I’m glad to be able to bring them back to Talladega in the Busch Series,” said Gordon. “Sam Kelley (owner of Sticks n Stuff) has been my sponsor every time I have run at Talladega and we are glad to continue that trend.” Kelley is also glad to be back on board with Tina Gordon. “We started with Tina in ARCA and are proud to move up the NASCAR ladder with her. At Sticks n Stuff, we keep adding locations and growing, just as Tina has been growing in her NASCAR career.” Gordon goes to Talladega after a strong run in the Craftsman Truck Series last week in Mesa Marin that put her in the Raybestos Rookie of the Year points lead and 16th in overall points. She looks to carry that momentum to Talladega and then on to Martinsville with her Brevak Racing truck program. “I’m thankful that the No. 22 team is giving me the opportunity to come here during my off week from the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series and race at my home track, Talladega Superspeedway.”(Victory Lane Motorsports Management PR)(3-27-2003)
  • Kentucky CTS Sponsor to be named UPDATE: Kentucky Speedway will introduce its newest, toughest event sponsor during a news conference on Wednesday, March 26 beginning at 11:30am in the speedway’s Blue Grass Hall. Craftsman Truck Series drivers Terry Cook and Carl Edwards will be available for comment and interview along with Kentucky Speedway and sponsor representatives.(Kentucky Speedway PR)
    UPDATE Ford to sponsor Kentucky CTS race: The Ford Motor Company along with the Greater Cincinnati Ford Dealers will team up to sponsor the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race July 12, 2003 at Kentucky Speedway. The event will be known as “The Built Ford Tough 225 Presented by the Greater Cincinnati Ford Dealers” and telecast live nationally on SPEED Channel beginning at 8:00pm.(Kentucky Speedway PR)(3-26-2003)
  • Monsam fined by NASCAR: NASCAR officials announced today that NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series crew chiefs John D. Monsam and Raymond L. Newman have been fined for infractions during the March 23 Lucas Oil 250 by Glidden at Mesa Marin Raceway. Monsam, crew chief of the #50 Ford, was fined $1,500 for actions detrimental to stock car racing (Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Rule Book) and parts and/or equipment used in the event that do not conform to NASCAR rules: unapproved front spring (Section 12-4-Q). In addition, Monsam was suspended from the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series for the next two events and from NASCAR until May 21. Newman, crew chief of the #20 Chevrolet, was fined $250 for actions detrimental to stock car racing (Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Rule Book) and parts and/or equipment that do not conform to NASCAR rules: unapproved jacking bolts (Section 12-4-Q).(NASCAR PR)(3-25-2003)
  • Setzer wins at Mesa Marin and ties a record: #46-Dennis Setzer won the Lucas Oil 250 on Sunday at Mesa Marin Raceway to match the CTS record for victories in consecutive seasons. Setzer won for the sixth straight season, matching the mark set by Jack Sprague in 2001. Setzer started 12th in his Chevrolet, and led 105 of 255 laps on the 0.5-mile oval. The winning pass came on the 228th lap, when Setzer used the lapped truck of #16-Travis Kvapil to block the progress of leader #62-Brendan Gaughan’s Dodge. Gaughan had led from the 196th lap, when a rain shower briefly put the race under caution for the 12th time. #50-Jon Wood came in 2nd, followed by #62-Brendan Gaughan, #4-Bobby Hamilton and #1-Ted Musgrave.
    See results at, Truck Series, MotorsportsOne and
  • Musgrave on pole at Mesa Marin: #1-Ted Musgrave won the pole at Meas Marin Raceway for Sunday’s Lucas Oil 250 Presented by Glidden [televised on Speed Channel at 4:30pm/et] with a lap of 93.293mph, followed by #4-Bobby Hamilton at 92.966, rookie #99-Carl Edwards at 92.942, #59-Robert Pressley at 92.836 and #50-Jon Wood at 92.827.
    For the lineup, see or Truck
  • Rick Mast to be Grand Marshal at Martinsville’s Truck Race: Martinsville Speedway has always been one of Rick Mast’s favorite tracks, a home track of sorts for the Virginia native. On Saturday, April 12, Mast will make a special trip to Martinsville Speedway, the first visit to any race track in almost a year for the former Winston Cup driver. Mast won’t be in a driver’s suit though. Instead he will be the Grand Marshal for the Advance Auto Parts 250 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race. Mast officially retired from racing during the winter after being diagnosed with chronic carbon monoxide poisoning, but he stopped racing late last spring after symptoms of the ailment became severe. “I think it’s fitting that Martinsville is the first place I show back up,” said the 45-year-old Mast. “That’s the track where I had a lot of my early success in the sport. It’s the track that I always thought of as my home track.” Mast said he didn’t return to a track last year because he was still involved in medical testing that eventually led to the diagnosis. “I wasn’t diagnosed until the end of the year and I didn’t want to go to the track and answer questions over and over without knowing what was wrong with me,” said Mast. Mast made 364 starts over a 15-year Winston Cup career. His career highlights included a pole in the inaugural Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and a sixth in the 1989 Daytona 500 while driving an unsponsored car. He won over $9 million in his Winston Cup career. Mast had several top-10 Winston Cup runs at Martinsville Speedway, with his best finish a fourth in the 1996 Old Dominion 500. He also has a Busch Grand National victory at Martinsville, winning a 150-lap Busch race in 1987. Mast says he has missed the camaraderie of racing, but “has kept in touch with a lot of the drivers on the phone and in letters.” Mast probably won’t ever fully recover from the carbon monoxide poisoning, but he understands the ailment better these days and says the trip to Martinsville shouldn’t be a problem. “I’m still working on figuring exactly what exposure I can be around. I’m starting to get a handle on it and I can pretty much tell,” said Mast. “Martinsville garage is not a closed-in area, but you still won’t find me in there involved in a half-hour conversation with all 40 cars going.” Action picks up at Martinsville on Friday, April 11 when both the NASCAR Winston Cup Series and the Craftsman Truck Series qualifying during MW Windows Pole Day. The Advance Auto Parts 250 is set for Saturday, April 12, at 3 p.m. while the Virginia 500 is scheduled for Sunday, April 13, at 1 p.m. Good seats remain for both the Virginia 500 and Advance Auto Parts 250. Virginia 500 tickets may be purchased by calling 1-877-RACE-TIX or by visiting Advance Auto Parts 250 tickets may be purchased by calling 1-877-RACE-TIX.(Martinsville Speedway PR)(3-20-2003)
  • Petree back to racing…in the Trucks: Andy Petree hasn’t lost his focus on continuing his strong NASCAR Winston Cup stock car racing program. The winning veteran car owner will also continue his “hands-on” experience, and is driving in Sunday’s NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Mesa Marin Raceway. Monaco Coaches, which sponsored Petree in the Daytona 500 and has enjoyed a corporate relationship with the team for several years, will sponsor Petree in this race, as well as some additional Truck races this season. “We’re still looking for sponsorship for the Winston Cup program, and we’re still working towards that every day,” Petree said. “But when that sponsorship comes about, we need to be ready to hit the ground running. Running these truck races gives our guys some time at the track and it gives us some information we can use for our car when we get back to racing.” Petree has run at the front in the Truck Series before. In his last outing as a driver – Indianapolis (Ind.) Raceway Park in August – he led a large portion of the middle of the race, and ran in the top five through most of the night before a last-lap crash collected him. He qualified third and ran as a top 10 through most of April’s race at Martinsville. The last time the Monaco Coaches truck ran at all, Tony Stewart drove it to victory at Richmond, Va., in September. Petree said his organization was still fielding calls from potential Winston Cup sponsors. “Like I said, we’re talking to people every day, and we’re talking to anybody who wants to talk,” Petree said. “We didn’t build what we had by giving up, and we’re moving forward. We’re planning on continuing what we’ve built in Winston Cup, and continuing to build on a new Truck tradition too.” Monaco, a Coburg, Ore., based corporation has become one of the world’s leading RV manufacturer since it was founded in 1968, and remains one of the fastest-growing in the industry.(Williams Company PR)(3-18-2003)
  • A New ROTY Candidate: #93-Teri McDonald has signed up for a shot at rookie of the year in NASCAR’s Craftsman Truck series, joining #31-Tina Gordon in challenging five men for the honor. It is the first time two women have been candidates for top rookie at the same time in any of NASCAR’s top professional series. Also in the running are #53-Randy Briggs, #99-Carl Edwards, #07-Jody Lavender, #27-Doug Keller and #86-T.J. Bell. Only three of them were in the field last month for the season-opening race in Daytona. Gordon finished 22nd, Edwards 24th and Keller 25th.(, actually 4 as #53-Briggs was the highest finishing rookie with a 14th place finish.(3-15-2003)
  • Trucks to the Wind Tunnel: NASCAR impounded two trucks from each manufacturer following Friday’s Craftsman 200 NASCAR Truck series race at Darlington Raceway and plans to test all six at a wind tunnel on Monday. The trucks taken Friday were the Chevrolets of #46-Dennis Setzer and #29-Kevin Harvick; the Fords of #29-Terry Cook and #14-Rick Crawford and the Dodges of #1-Ted Musgrave and #4-Bobby Hamilton. Dodges swept the top-three positions in Friday’s race and four of the top five. At the season opener at Daytona, Ford and Dodge both places two trucks in the top five along with one Chevrolet.(
  • Spencer to drive a truck at Bristol in August: Jimmy Spencer will make his NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series debut in an Ultra Motorsports Dodge in August at Bristol Motor Speedway. Team owner Jimmy Smith owns two Craftsman Truck Series Dodge teams for #1-Ted Musgrave and #2-Jason Leffler. The teams are housed in Mooresville, NC, with the #7-Sirius Dodge that Spencer drives in the Winston Cup Series.(
  • Hamilton wins at Darlington: #4-Bobby Hamilton held off #1-Ted Musgrave by .139 seconds to win Friday’s Craftsman 200 at Darlington Raceway – his first win of the season. #62-Brendan Gaughan finished third, completing a Dodge sweep of the top three. #16-Travis Kvapil was fourth in a Chevrolet and #18-Chad Chaffin fifth. The race was slowed twice by caution for 10 laps. There were 10 lead changes among seven drivers.(
    For results see
  • Cook lands major assoc: Engineered Machined Products, Inc. announced today that it has signed on as a major associate sponsor on the No. 29 Power Stroke Diesel Ford driven by Terry Cook in the Craftsman Truck Series. EMP will feature its Oil Mate brand product. Oil Mate is a an advanced oil management system for diesel engines.(Winston Cup Scene Daily Newsletter)(3-14-2003)
  • Rain Nixes Truck Qualifying: Rain today washed out qualifying for the Track Too Tough To Tame 200 Craftsman Truck Series race and remains a threat to disrupt other NASCAR events at Darlington Raceway this weekend. Forecasters, however, don’t expect a complete washout. The Weather Channel’s Web site offers the gloomiest outlook, calling for a 50 percent chance of rain Friday, a 60 percent chance Saturday and a 40 percent chance Sunday. But the National Weather Service and lean more toward clouds than rain and say any rain will likely occur in passing showers. The field for the truck race, scheduled for 4 p.m. (Eastern) Friday, will line up according to team owner points.(Winston Cup Scene Daily Newsletter)
    So the pole goes to: #16-Travis Kvapil based on 2002 Owners Points, followed by #14-Rick Crawford, #1-Ted Musgrave, #2-Jason Leffler and #75-David Starr. See the lineup at or
  • Edwards to sport special helmet: Carl Edwards will wear a helmet of a unique design when he gets behind the wheel of Roush Racing’s #99 Ford for the Truck Series at Darlington Raceway tomorrow. Edwards asked 22 kindergarten students from Lake Norman (NC) Elementary to sign his white helmet. “I really enjoy working with kids since I spent some time substitute teaching back home in Columbia, Mo.,” Edwards says. “I like teaching, but my real love is racing.”(Winston Cup Scene Daily Newsletter)(3-13-2003)
  • Bill Lester, Honey Nut Cheerios Announce Endorsement: Scott Hayes, General Mills Motorsports Manager, announced their first foray into the Craftsman Truck series and their endorsement relationship with our Honey Nuts Cheerios brand with Bill Lester, driver of the #8 Dodge Ram Dodge. They hope to have Lester on some packages of Honey Nut Cheerios. This weekend Bobby Hamilton Racing has allowed General Mills to run the Honey Nut Cheerios logo on Lester’s truck. It’s a one-race deal there. It’s a personal services relationship for the rest of the year.(Golin Harris PR)(3-13-2003)
  • Past Winners at Darlington: Two drivers in the field won’t have any trouble finding Victory Circle should they win the Craftsman 200. Geoffrey Bodine (#36 Thompson Racing Ford) won three NASCAR Busch Series races at Darlington, most recently in 1989. Pressley (#59 Harris Trucking Dodge) counts two victories in the division, the last coming in 1993. Ted Musgrave won in 2002.(NASCAR PR)(3-13-2003)
  • New Chevy Hood: NASCAR has approved for competition the 2003 Chevrolet Silverado hood and front fascia beginning with this week’s Craftsman 200. “Aerodynamically, we tried to duplicate what we had last year,” said Dayne Pierantoni, GM Racing’s aero and chassis development engineer.(NASCAR PR)(3-13-2003)
  • Lavender extends deal: Before his first Craftmsan Truck Series of the season, #07-Jody Lavender has already been given a vote of confidence. The Hartsville, SC, native, who will be competing in the Craftsman 200 at Darlington Raceway on Friday, signed a 10-race extension with Green Light racing owned by Bobby Dotter. Lavender’s deal originally was scheduled for four races beginning with the race at Darlington but it was extended on Monday and will run through Federated Auto Parts 200 in Nashville, Tenn. on Aug. 8 “It takes some pressure off because we know we have more than four races to perform,” Lavender said. By running in 14 races, Lavender will be qualified for the Rookie of the Year standings.(Morning News)(3-12-2003)
  • Rap star Nelly, buys into #15 team UPDATE Nelly cancels visit: Grammy award-winning rapper Nelly will buy into a Craftsman Truck team starting on March 14 at Darlington Raceway. The deal to purchase part of #15 Billy Ballew Motorsports will last the rest of the season, Nelly’s representative, Michael Warmack, told The Associated Press by phone Tuesday. The truck will sport a new paint scheme and feature Nelly’s Vokal clothing label. It will be unveiled in time for the Darlington 200 truck event. Warmack will be the point man for the Atlanta-based Vokal Racing Team, and said the group eventually will look for a minority driver. For now, Warmack said they will continue with Ballew’s driver, NASCAR truck veteran Andy Houston, at the 1.366-mile superspeedway. Warmack said plans came together last month at Daytona International Speedway. Darlington Raceway spokeswoman Cathy Mock said her office got a call about security and protection for an appearance next week by the platinum-selling artist. Warmack was hopeful Nelly would be at NASCAR’s oldest superspeedway to debut the truck and watch the race.(Sporting News/PR)(3-5-2003)
    UPDATE: Grammy award-winning rapper Nelly has canceled his appearance at Darlington Raceway Wednesday, track spokeswoman Cathy Mock says. Nelly was expected to be on hand when a Craftsman Truck bearing the colors and name of his Vokal clothing line was to be unveiled, but Mock says the rapper had a family emergency in St. Louis. The platinum-selling artist recently purchased part of Billy Ballew Motorsports. The Vokal Racing Team will be based in Atlanta. Mock said there was hope for Nelly to be at NASCAR’s oldest superspeedway Friday to watch his truck in the season’s second truck race.(Greenville News)(3-12-2003
  • Barnes leaves Ultra Motorsports? UPDATE joins the Waltrip’s: hearing that Buddy Barnes, the crew chief for the Ultra Motorpsorts #2 Truck Series team and spotter for the #7 Ultra Motorsports Cup team, has left the team.(3-7-2003)
    UPDATE: Buddy Barnes lost his crew chief’s job on owner Jim Smith’s #2 Craftsman Truck (Jason Leffler) last Friday. But Barnes says he’s looking forward to working as “a contract labor mechanic” for Leroy’s Boys Racing, a collaborative truck effort between Michael and Darrell Waltrip. D.W. will enlist the help of his Fox Sports posse: Jeff Hammond will work on the trucks, and Larry McReynolds will be the spotter. Plans are for Darrell to race the No. 17 Chevrolet April 12 at Martinsville and August 1 at Indianapolis Raceway Park. The team purchased lightly used trucks from Hendrick Motorsports and will get engines from Dale Earnhardt Inc.(Sporting News)(3-10-2003)


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