November 2005 Busch Series Archive
- News regarding Shane Hmiel’s suspension can be found on the Hmiel Suspension page.
- Hornday Partial Busch Schedule with KHI in 2006: Kevin Harvick Inc. and The Outdoor Channel announced today the renewal of their contract for the 2006 season. Ron Hornaday will drive the #33 Outdoor Channel Chevrolet in 13 Busch Series events in 2006. In addition to his driving duties in the #33 Outdoor Channel Chevrolet, Hornaday will also continue to drive KHI’s #33 (formally the #6) Chevrolet in the Truck Series. (KHI PR) (11-30-2005)
- Yates Announce 2006 Busch Plans: Robert Yates Racing has announced its driver lineup for the 2006 NASCAR Busch Series season and plans to compete in all 35 events. Elliott Sadler will drive the #90 CitiFinancial Ford for 16 events in 2006 while drivers Stephen Leicht and Matt McCall will share the driving duties during 17 events as part of the RYR Driver Development program. In addition to Leicht and McCall, Belgium driver Marc Goosens will compete in both the Busch Series road course races in 2006 as part of a joint effort between RYR and Rile Technologies, the championship team in the Rolex Series. RYR will continue to prepare for 2006 and beyond, looking for the right opportunity to grow into a four-team organization that competes in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series. (Robert Yates Racing PR) (11-28-2005)
- Mark Green to the #4: Biagi Bros. Racing announced today that Mark Green will drive the #4 GEICO Dodge during the 2006 NASCAR Busch Series season. In addition to naming Green as the driver, Biagi Bros. Racing has hired Jon Wolfe as crew chief. The team will remain in their state-of-the-art race shop in Mooresville, NC, and will field Dodge’s for Green next year. (Biagi Bros. PR)(11-28-2005)
- Robinson team’s up for auction in Dec: Gavel Auction will be auctions off #28 and #49 Jay Robinson Racing Busch Series teams on Fri Dec 9th and Sat Dec 10th starting at 10:00am/et both days at 3901 Sardis Church Rd in Monroe, NC, more info at gavelauction.com.(11-25-2005)
- Ameriquest as a sponsor? UPDATE 3: hearing Ameriquest will sponsor either Roush Racing in some capacity or the #21 Wood Brosthers team as a co-primary.(11-16-2005)
UPDATE: been told Ameriquest will be the sponsor of the #16 Roush Racing Ford in the Busch series with a few of the Cup drivers piloting the car.(11-16-2006)
UPDATE 2: Ameriquest Mortgage Company, one of the nation’s largest mortgage lenders, announced a landmark partnership with Roush Racing to serve as the team’s primary sponsor of four of its drivers in the Busch Series (NBS) for the 2006 racing season. Dubbed the “Ameriquest Dream Team,” it will consist of drivers Mark Martin, Matt Kenseth, Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards. The partnership includes sponsorship of all four teams throughout the NBS race season – unprecedented in the series’ 24-year history. Through Roush Racing’s manufacturer partnership with Ford Racing, the “Ameriquest Dream Team” drivers will pilot Ford Fusions in all NBS races.
Ameriquest will serve as the primary sponsor for at least two drivers in 26 selected NBS races in 2006. In addition, in two of these events, all four drivers will carry the Ameriquest colors. Those events are: the May 27 event at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte, N.C. and the Ameriquest 300 on September 2 at California Speedway in Fontana, Calif. The four drivers have combined to win 87-career NBS races, including nine this season, and three NASCAR national series championships. In addition, Ameriquest, proud sponsor of the American dream, will become the official mortgage company of Roush Racing. For more information about Ameriquest Mortgage Company, visit www.ameriquest.com.(Alan Taylor Communications PR)(11-22-2005)
UPDATE: Kenseth will run about 20 races in the #17, Biffle another 20 in the #16, Edwards will have 15 in the #60 and Martin will have five or six in the #6. Edwards will get additional sponsorship from another company so he can run the entire season, and Todd Kluever will run the entire schedule in the #06 car with sponsorships to be named. Crew chiefs have not been finalized, but Mike Kelley, a car chief on the Cup side for Roush, will go to the #16 Busch car as the crew chief.(NASCAR Scene via BGNRacing.com)(11-26-2005)
Leffler wins Turkey Night at Irwindale: Jason Leffler, who was releasd from his Nextel Cup ride from the Joe Gibbs #11 Fed-Ex car after this year’s Brickyard 400, sparkled en route to winning Thursday night’s 65th running of the Turkey Night Grand Prix (TNGP) for Midget cars before approximately 7,000 at Irwindale Speedway. Leffler raced in 15 Busch Series races, finishing 30th in the points in the #32 Braun Racing Chevy. “It’s hard to say it was a bad year, but racing-wise, it was a bad deal,” the 30-year-old said. “I won this!” Leffler, who won the TNGP in 1999, the first time it had been held at Irwindale, had a loose spring coil and the left front of his car was dragging along the ground, drawing sparks. He said it made it tougher to drive later in the race. His Busch owner, Todd Braun, watched Leffler win the race Thursday. He also helped Leffler secure the ride; they built the car together. “I called around for a ride and everyone said I wasn’t good enough,” he said. “So I built my own car. It’s not like when you just show up, suit up and drive. There’s a lot to worry about. I grew up watching this race as a kid. This is the biggest race.” Among those watching his victory were NASCAR Nextel Cup champion and USAC Midget car owner champion Tony Stewart, the 2000 Turkey Night champion, who was watching his driver, Josh Wise of Riverside, IRL veteran Bryan Herta and numerous former Turkey Night champions, including Parnelli Jones.(SGVtribune.com)(11-25-2005)
- #64 Crew Chief Frazier Fined: NASCAR has announced that Bryant Frazier, crew chief for the #64 Dodge driven by Mike Wallace in the NASCAR Busch Series, has been fined $2,500 for rule violations that occurred last week at Homestead-Miami Speedway. During opening day inspection on November 18, the #64 was found to have an unapproved final drive gear ratio, a violation of Section 12-4-CC of the 2005 NASCAR Busch Series rule book (any team that uses a rear end gear ratio that violates the specified ratios during an event). That also violated Section 12-4-A (actions detrimental to stock car racing).(NASCAR PR)(11-23-2005)
- McMurray back with Rusty in 2006: Rusty Wallace Inc. will run Jamie McMurray in the majority of the 2006 Busch season in the #64 Dodge. McMurray, despite moving to a Ford next season in the Cup ranks, has approval to pilot the RWI ride. The machine will be sponsored by Top Flite for the 20-plus companion events that he will run. Wallace is currently seeking sponsorship for the remainder of the season in which his son Steve will pilot the machine.(BGNRacing.com)(11-20-2005)
- Edwards 2005 Rookie of the Year: #60-Carl Edwards was declared the 2005 Raybestos Busch Series Rookie of the Year. (Camp and Assoc/Raybestos PR)(11-20-2005)
- Newman wins at Homestead: #39-Ryan Newman won the Ford 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway for his 6th win of the season and 7th of his career. #66-Greg Biffle finished 2nd, followed by #9-Mark Martin, #21-Kvein Harvick and #11-Paul Menard. Points leader, #8-Martin Truex Jr. finished 7th and won his 2nd Busch Series Championship as 2nd in points #2-Clint Bowyer finished just behind him in 8th. There were 9 Caution flags for 34 laps and 14 lead changes among 7 drivers with Biffle leading the most laps with 79.
Race results at:
NASCAR.com – unoff
NASCAR.com – official[posted Monday](11-19-2005)
- FINAL 2005 Busch Series Drivers Points Standings after Homestead [race 35 of 35]:
#8-Martin Truex Jr., 4937 [lost 25 points, flipping the bird at RIR]
#2-Clint Bowyer, 4869, -68
#60-Carl Edwards, 4601, -336 [missed a race]
#41/#40-Reed Sorenson, 4453, -484 [lost 50 points, tire penalty at BMS]
#20-Denny Hamilin, 4143, -794
TOP-five in owners points:
#8-Chance 2 Motorsports 4937
#2-Richard Childress Racing 4869, -68
#60-Roush Racing 4704, -233
#21-Richard Childress Racing 4628, -309
#66-Clarence Brewer 4505, -432
For full standings see:
NASCAR.com – unoffical
NASCAR.com – official(posted Monday)
Motorsports One – Drivers Points
Motorsports One – Owners Points with attempts.(11-19-2005)
- NASCAR Busch Series News and Notes: End of Season:
The Thanksgiving holiday signals the off-season for the NASCAR Busch Series. As Martin Truex Jr. (#8 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet) tucks his second- consecutive NASCAR Busch Series championship trophy away, preparations for his awards coronation are in full swing for the Friday, Dec. 9 series banquet at the Portofino Bay Hotel in Orlando, Fla. Prior to the banquet, Truex will join other 2005 NASCAR champions in New York City next week as part of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series championship celebration. Following his trek to the Big Apple, Truex will participate in a media tour in Tampa, Fla. on Dec. 7 and in Orlando Dec. 8 – along with other members of the 2005 NASCAR Busch Series Top 10 – before appearing on the champion’s stage Friday night. This week, though, provides the series drivers and teams an opportunity to spend quality time with family and friends.
“I’ve stayed right in Florida since we won the championship [last] Saturday night,” Truex said. “My dad had a big party at his house in West Palm for the team on Monday night. From there, we’re all going to just hang out for the week with a bunch of family that’s down here to celebrate with us. But, it’s going to be all about turkey and stuffing come Thursday for Thanksgiving. We have a lot to be thankful for this year and having family and friends around will make it even better.”
NASCAR Busch Series championship runner-up Clint Bowyer (#2 ACDelco Chevrolet) is taking the opportunity to spend Thanksgiving with his grandparents in his hometown of Emporia, Kan. Reed Sorenson (#41 Discount Tire Co. Dodge), who finished fourth in the championship standings, is looking forward to Thanksgiving with his family in Peachtree City, Ga., his hometown. Carlos Contreras, who competed in six races for FitzBradshaw Racing this year, has his hands full this Thanksgiving. His wife, Andrea, gave birth to twins in his native Mexico City on Monday (Nov. 21). Carlos Jr. and Alajandrea are the first children for the couple. Mother and babies are doing fine. Jason Leffler (#32 Braun Racing Chevrolet) flew to his home state of California on Tuesday to prepare to participate in the 65th annual USAC Turkey Night Grand Prix at Irwindale Speedway. He won the prestigious event in 1999. Michel Jourdain Jr. (#15 CENTRIX Financial Ford) finished third in the Baja Challenge class in last week’s Baja 1000. Jourdain teamed with his father Michel Sr. and two uncles, Bernard and Jean Pierre, for the second-consecutive year with a time of 21:28:32. “It was a good, good race,” he said. “We wanted to win but third place is good. We led early in our class (Baja Challenge) but had problems, just like everybody else. It was a difficult course this year, the most difficult in years. Hopefully next year my father, uncles and I can compete again.”
FROM THE ARCHIVES
The only NASCAR touring series event in recent memory to be held in conjunction with Thanksgiving took place at New Hampshire International Speedway on Nov. 23, 2001, the day after Thanksgiving. The original event – a NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race – had been scheduled for Sept. 8, but was postponed due to the terrorist attacks.
The NASCAR Busch Series was well-represented at the event with four former series champions – Bobby Labonte (1991), Joe Nemechek (1992), Johnny Benson (1995) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (1998-99) taking the green flag. Kevin Harvick had just been crowned the 2001 NASCAR Busch Series champion and was rounding out his NASCAR NEXTEL Cup season with this final event. NASCAR Busch Series regulars Kenny Wallace and Bobby Hamilton Jr. also were included in the starting line-up. The New Hampshire race was also one of the few times all three Wallace brothers competed against each other.
Robby Gordon picked up the first win of his NASCAR career after a controversial tussle with former NASCAR Busch Series competitor – and that season’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup champion – Jeff Gordon. Labonte, the defending premier series champion, had the best showing of NASCAR Busch Series alumni with a third place finish.(NASCAR PR)(11-25-2005)
- 2006 Busch Series Schedule Announced: 35 races
• Feb. 18: Daytona International Speedway (x)
• Feb. 25: California Speedway (x)
• March 5: Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez • March 11: Las Vegas Motor Speedway (x)
• March 18: Atlanta Motor Speedway(x)
• March 25: Bristol Motor Speedway (x)
• April 8: Texas Motor Speedway (x)
• April 15: Nashville Superspeedway (S)
• April 21: Phoenix International Raceway (x)
• April 29: Talladega Superspeedway (x)
• May 5: Richmond International Raceway (x)
• May 12: Darlington Raceway (x)
• May 27: Lowe’s Motor Speedway (x)
• June 3: Dover International Speedway (x)
• June 10: Nashville Superspeedway (S)
• June 17: Kentucky Speedway (S)
• June 24: Milwaukee Mile (S)
• June 30: Daytona International Speedway (x)
• July 8: Chicagoland Speedway (x)
• July 15: New Hampshire International Speedway (x)
• July 22: Martinsville Speedway (S)[at night using portable lights]
• July 29: Gateway International Raceway (S)
• Aug. 5: Indianapolis Raceway Park (S)
• Aug. 12: Watkins Glen International (x)
• Aug. 19: Michigan International Speedway (x)
• Aug. 25: Bristol Motor Speedway (x)
• Sept. 2: California Speedway (x)
• Sept. 8 Richmond International Raceway (x)
• Sept. 23: Dover International Speedway (x)
• Sept. 30: Kansas Speedway (x)
• Oct. 13: Lowe’s Motor Speedway (x)
• Oct. 28: Memphis Motorsports Park (S)
• Nov. 4: Texas Motor Speedway (x)
• Nov. 11: Phoenix International Raceway (x)
• Nov. 18: Homestead-Miami Speedway(x)
(x) = companion with Cup; (S) = stand alone event.
see more at NASCAR.com or BGNRacing.com.(NASCAR PR)(10-22-2005)
- Newman wins pole at Homestead: #39-Ryan Newman won the pole for the Ford 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway with a lap of 174.548mph. #66-Greg Biffle will start 2nd followed by #6-Kasey Kahne, #60-Carl Edwards and #47-Jon Wood. Points leader, #8-Martin Truex Jr. got loose on his first lap and smacked the turn 2 wall, spinning off the corner and doing damage to the right rear, he will start from the rear in a backup car. #20-Denny Hamlin also wrecked on his first lap and will start from the rear also. #2-Clint Bowyer, 2nd in points, 64 behind Truex Jr. will start 12th, so he will start the race, unofficially in the points lead. Missing the race were: #78-Jerry Robertson; #99-Michael Waltrip; #31-Dave Blaney; #09-Jamie McMurray; #72-Kevin Lepage; #10-John Andretti; #68-Travis Kittleson; #49-Steve Grissom; #23-Chris Wimmer; #86-Marc Mitchell.
See Starting lineups:
BGNRacing.com – Starting Lineup
BGNRacing.com – Qualifying Results
- Smith in the #35 in 2006, new crew chief: Team Rensi Motorsports announced today it has hired Regan Smith to drive the #35 McDonald’s Ford in the 2006 Busch Series season. Smith, a Cato, NY native, will pilot the McDonald’s Ford Fusion beginning with the season opening Busch Series race at Daytona International Speedway. Chris Wright has also been hired to serve as Crew Chief for the McDonald’s Ford next season.(Rensi PR via BGNRacing.com)(11-18-2005)
- Supercuts and Cottman Trans back with FBR #12 in 2006, Kauffman to drive: FitzBradshaw Racing announced sponsors Supercuts and Cottman Transmission have renewed their sponsorships for the 2006 Busch Series season. Supercuts has been sponsoring FitzBradshaw’s #12 entry since 2002. Cottman joined the roster in 2005. Newcomer Joel Kauffman will continue to drive the #12 entry for the 2006 season. Kauffman assumed the driver position earlier this year. (FitzBradshaw Racing PR), doesn’t say if Cottman will be on the #12 or one of the other FBR cars, #14/#40.(11-18-2005)
- Richert and Manion Win Crew Chief of the Year Award: After a season of fierce competition, the 2005 Wypall Wipers Crew Chief Challenge has crowned its champions. Doug Richert, of the #16 National Guard Ford, and Kevin “Bono” Manion, of the #8 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, were each awarded Wypall Wipers Crew Chief of the Year honors. At the conclusion of each Nextel Cup event this season, a panel of judges including a member of the local media, a Wypall Wipers representative, as well as Tony Eury Sr. and Robbie Reiser, selected the Crew Chief of the Race. The decision was based on who did the most outstanding job. It wasn’t necessarily the winner of each race, but was certainly the leader who made the biggest difference for his team. Each Crew Chief of the Race was presented with a check for $1,000.
Richert won the award five times throughout the 2005 season to clinch Wypall Wipers Crew Chief of the Year honors among the Nextel Cup garage. “Its an awesome feeling, but I’m not in this position without everyone on this race team,” Richert said, “The team has definitely come full circle, we have all the ingredients; we got the driver, we got the crew, we got the parts and pieces to work with, and the Roush/Yates engine program is second to none.” He managed to hold off Bob Osborne of the #99 Ford, who finished the year strong, amounting four Crew Chief of the Race wins. Richert took home a grand prize of $20,000, courtesy of Wypall Wipers, for his efforts.
Beginning at Daytona in July, Wypall extended the Crew Chief Challenge to the Busch Series garage. At each companion event, Reiser and Eury Sr. selected the most impressive crew chief of the day’s race. Kevin Manion, Newt Moore, and Brad Parrott were each selected twice by the expert panel. A tie breaker was determined based on the point standings, which earned Manion the Wypall Wipers Crew Chief of the Year award for the NASCAR Busch Series. Manion was given a $5,000 grand prize. Wypall will return next year to continue the award, running both a full time Nextel Cup and Busch Series schedule. For more information about Wypall or the Crew Chief of the Year award go to wypall.com.(SMC 500)(11-18-2005)
- Andretti to the Busch Series? UPDATE 2 at Homestead: hearing John Andretti could run a full Busch Series schedule for ppc Racing in the #10 Ford.(11-5-2005)
UPDATE: John Andretti will replace Brent Sherman in the #10 Ford for ppc Racing in the Busch Series. Freedom Roads RV will be the sponsor.(Sporting News)(11-7-2005)
UPDATE 2: John Andretti is attempting once more to hit the restart button on his racing career. This weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Andretti looks to roll again, this time in the NASCAR Busch Series. Andretti hopes to be in the field on Saturday when the green flag drops for the Ford 300 Busch race. Andretti looks to the 300 as a kickoff for a full 2006 season in Busch. “This race is an end of the season for everyone else, but it’s a beginning for me,” the 42-year-old Nazareth native said. “It starts my Busch career off for next year.” For the 300, Andretti’s #10 is the St. Jude Racing to Save Lives Ford. The team is racing in support of St. Jude Research Hospital, in Memphis, Tenn., and the fight against childhood cancer and other catastrophic diseases. Every part and aspect of the car is donated by ppc owner Greg Pollex, sponsors, suppliers and others parties. Pollex and Andretti pledged their winnings to the St. Jude cause.(Express-Times)(11-17-2005)
- #58 crew chief leaving? UPDATE 2 and Smith too: hearing that #58 crew chief, Chris Wright, is leaving Glynn Motorsports and driver Regan Smith.(10-27-2006)
UPDATE: been told Wright has left the team after the race at Texas, no word on a replacement.(11-10-2005)
UPDATE 2: Regan Smith and Glynn Motorsports will go their separate ways effective immediately. Chris Wright, crew chief for the #58 car, was also released from the team, effective immediately. “Chris Wright, has decided to part ways with us and to move to another team. We as an organization decided to make a driver change at this time, and release Regan Smith as driver of the #58 car,” said Jason Butler, Team Manager for Glynn Motorsports. Wright, who came to Glynn Motorsports from Robert Yates Racing, began his term as crew chief for the #58 car at Darlington back in May. Smith, who started the NASCAR season driving the #19 NASCAR Craftsman Truck, competed in 21 events for Glynn Motorsports, had a season best 15th place finish at New Hampshire.(Glynn Motorsports PR)(11-17-2005)
- Keller to #1; Sauter to #44: The game of musical chairs is alive and well in the Busch Series as drivers Johnny Sauter, Justin Labonte, Jason Keller, Brent Sherman and John Andretti have all showed up to play, with announcements expected by Homestead as to where these drivers will end up next season. (Yahoo! Sports) NOTE: It’s confirmed that Keller will move to the #1 team owned by James Finch. We’re anticipating more information on this and other driver moves later this week. Sauter has all but announced he’s going to the Haas team and Andretti is expected to replace Sherman who is moving to the #49 Cup team. Labonte’s announcement may not happen until next month. Stay tuned as additional developments will likely surface over the coming weeks.(BGNRacing.com)(11-17-2005)
- Crosby Parts Ways with Keith Coleman Racing: Busch Series rookie Kim Crosby has announced that she is no longer a part of Keith Coleman Racing [#26] effective immediately. Crosby who made her debuty with the team in this year’s Winn-Dixie 250 at Daytona, stated that she has decided to part ways with Keith Coleman Racing but is thankful for the opportunity and experience she has gained this season. “It has not been an easy season for this rookie, but I have learned a great deal and believe that everything happens for a reason,” explained Crosby, who was a former high school principal before turning to her racing career full-time. Crosby stated that her sponsors, Golden Flake Snack Foods and Boudreaux’s Buttpaste will go with her as she finalizes plans for the 2006 racing season. “I am very excited about the possibilities for 2006 and am very much looking forward to finalizing my plans in the coming weeks,” Crosby said. Crosby has been contacted by several teams within NASCAR and is making certain that the next choice she makes will be a positive move for her.(Catchfence)
AND Kim Crosby will no longer be a part of Keith Coleman Racing, the team announced. Crosby, who joined the team mid-way through the season, served as the driver of the #26 Vassarette Chevrolet and product spokesperson for Vassarette. “It makes the most sense for both parties,” said Keith Coleman, team owner. “As an organization we felt we needed to go in a different direction and Kim wanted to be able to explore other opportunities. I appreciate all of Kim’s hard work on the part of KCR and Vassarette and I wish her well next season. I’m sure we’ll see her on the track somewhere in 2006.”(KCR PR)(11-17-2005)
- Tim Sauter in #36 at Homestead AND: Tim Sauter will drive the #36 Chevrolet for DCT Motorsports in Saturday’s NASCAR Busch Series season finale, DCT owner John McGill announced today. Lester Buildings, a Minnesota-based company that manufactures engineered, wood frame building systems over the eastern two-thirds of the nation, will sponsor the team in the race. “We all know Tim Sauter can drive a race car, and we’re going to give him the best we can at Homestead,” (crew chief) Ricky Pearson said. “A driver brand new to a race team, especially for the final race of the season, doesn’t make things easy but our guys are ready for it. We’re looking forward to a good weekend.” Sauter has 82 career starts in Busch Series and, in his own full season, finished 13th with seven top-10 finish in 2002. He has also started races in the Nextel Cup and Truck Series. DCT Motorsports is talking with companies regarding sponsorship for the 2006 season and beyond. McGill has developed sponsorship packages that could incorporate a full season or blocks of races. Utilizing his own business and marketing acumen, he brings creative and fresh approaches not just to team sponsorship itself but areas such as hospitality, cross-promotions and business-to-business possibilities.(Williams Company)(11-17-2005)
AND: GunBroker.com, the world’s largest online auction of firearms and accessories, will sponsor the #36 Chevrolet of DCT Motorsports and driver Tim Sauter in Saturday’s Busch Series season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. GunBroker.com is the world’s largest online auction of firearms and accessories.(Williams Company)(11-18-2005)
- Bodine teams up with Kelly on #34 and #30 truck: Todd Bodine is teaming up with NFL Hall of Fame quarterback and NASCAR Busch Series co-owner of the #34 Dollar General/Chevy Monte Carlo, Jim Kelly in Homestead this weekend. They are working to help raise awareness of Krabbe Disease through Kelly’s ‘Hunter’s Hope Foundation’ at this weekends NASCAR season final at Homestead-Miami Speedway. “We are excited about and honored by the commitment of Germain Motor Company, Todd and his championship caliber race team to help create greater awareness for the objectives of the Hunter’s Hope Foundation”, Kelly stated. “Our late son Hunter lived for nearly nine years with this debilitating illness that unfortunately was a terminal diagnosis for him because he was not diagnosed properly at birth for the disease”, Kelly explained. “One of our goals with the Foundation is to create greater awareness of not only the disease but the need for more universal newborn screening in states throughout this country that are deficient in the process. This special event at the final Craftsman Truck Series race by Todd and his team will help more and more people understand our cause”. Established in 1997 by Jim Kelly, and his wife, Jill, after their infant son, Hunter, was diagnosed with Krabbe Leukodystrophy, an inherited, fatal, nervous system disease. The Foundation is the Kelly’s life long commitment to increase public awareness of leukodystrophies as well as to increase the likelihood of early detection and treatment. Their ultimate goal is to raise money to fund research efforts to identify new treatments, therapies, and a cure for Krabbe and other leukodystrophies
Bodine will be driving in both the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race and Busch Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway this weekend. The Hunter’s Hope Foundation logo will be prominently displayed on his NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series #30 Germain Motor Co. /Racers Edge Toyota Tundra and Busch Series #34 Dollar General/Chevy Monte Carlo for this weekends NASCAR season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, FL. Both the #30 Germain Motor Co./Racers Edge/Toyota Tundra Racing crew and #34 Dollar General crew members will be wearing Hunters Hope Foundation T-shirts and wristbands this weekend. Fans can purchase T-shirts and/or wristbands by going to huntershope.org. All proceeds go to the Hunter’s Hope Foundation.(PR)(11-18-2005)
- Rogers to the #58: Clay Rogers will make his first start behind the wheel of the #58 Who’s Your Daddy Dodge Charger for Glynn Motorsports in the Ford 300 Busch Series event at Homestead-Miami Speedway this Saturday. Rogers, who will be making his third NBS start of the 2005 season. Steve Plattenberger, Competition Director for Glynn Motorsports, will pull a “double-duty” weekend as crew chief for both the #58 Busch car, and the #65 truck at Homestead.(PR)(11-17-2005)
- JR Motorsports to Run First Busch Race: JR Motorsports, a Mooresville, NC-based company owned by Dale Earnhardt, Jr., will step up a couple of rungs on the stock car racing ladder when they field their first NASCAR Busch Series entry in the Ford 300 season finale at the Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Fl. Mark McFarland, who will compete full-time in the Busch Series in 2006 in the #88 U.S. Navy-sponsored Monte Carlos, will attempt to make his first Busch Series start of 2005 and his first at Homestead-Miami Speedway. He has nine career Busch Series starts with his best finish of 16th coming at Richmond International Speedway in September of 2004. McFarland has been competing full-time on the USAR Hooters Pro Cup circuit in 2005 where he has compiled 1 win, six poles and nine top-five finishes in the ultra-competitive series. McFarland, a Winchester, Va. native, will have fellow Virginian Jefferson Hodges on top of the pit box as his crew chief. Hodges, who is from Williamsburg, Va., has been the crew chief for JR Motorsports’ Hooters Pro Cup effort and the car will have Richard Childress Racing engines. While the 27-year-old McFarland is technically a rookie, this will be his 10th Busch Series start. Most recently he participated in Tommy Baldwin Racing’s rotating lineup of 2004. His average finish of 20th was the highest for the #6 entry.(JR Motorsports PR)(11-17-2005)
- Moore to attempt Homestead for DEI: Ryan Moore is attempting to make the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Led by Tony Eury, Sr, Director of Competition for DEI, the #81 Oreo/Kraft Chevrolet team will give it one more try. “We tested there last week and it went really well,” Moore said. “We took two cars and the primary one was really strong. The second day started really well with us making some qualifying runs and long runs. Tony Sr. and guys made all the right adjustments.”(DEI PR)(11-17-2005)
- Sauter out of the #1, to #44? Johnny Sauter has indicated he is headed to the #44 Haas CNC Racing team.(NASCAR Scene via BGNRacing.com)
so what happened at the #1? hearing that Sauter and #1 owner James Finch couldn’t agree on their 2006 plans and Finch wanted an answer which Sauter was not ready to give, so Finch made the decision to put someone else in the car in 2006. Rumor has that Jason Keller could end up in the #1 ride.(11-10-2005)
UPDATE: Johnny Sauter confirmed that he would pursue opportunities outside the Phoenix Racing organization in 2006. During his year representing Yellow Transportation in the NASCAR Busch Series, Sauter has been an outstanding ambassador of company values. As the team prepares for the 2006 race season, they are excited to commence their eighth year of Busch Series team sponsorship.(Team Yellow)(11-16-2005)
- NASCAR Busch Series News and Notes: Homestead:
Thirty-four races, more than 8,600 miles, events in two countries and arguably the most difficult competition in the 24-year history of the NASCAR Busch Series. After conquering those and so many other obstacles, one more remains for the two contenders for the 2005 championship – Saturday’s Ford 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Reigning NASCAR Busch Series champion Martin Truex Jr. (#8 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet) has a 64-point advantage over second-place Clint Bowyer (#2 ACDelco Chevrolet) in the point standings. Simply put, Truex needs to finish 12th or better, or lead a lap and finish 14th or better, to repeat as champion. The NASCAR Busch Series championship has been decided by the outcome of the final race of the season 13 times in its 24-year history. Homestead-Miami Speedway will now have hosted five series title races since 1995. Truex is attempting to become the sixth driver to win two NASCAR Busch Series championships, and the fifth to win consecutive crowns. The last driver to win back-to-back titles was Truex’s team co-owner, Dale Earnhardt Jr., who accomplished the feat in 1998 and ‘99.
Last call for Top 10 appearance … Saturday’s race not only decides the 2005 NASCAR Busch Series champion, but also solidifies the final top 10 drivers in the point standings. There remains a challenge for 10th heading into the season finale, where three drivers are vying for the slot. Greg Biffle (#66 Royal Office Products Ford) is 10th with 3,685 points. Biffle, the 2002 NASCAR Busch Series champion, is in tenth position despite missing eight races this season. He leads 11th-place J.J. Yeley (#18 Vigoro/Home Depot Chevrolet) by 53 points and 12th-place David Stremme (#14 U.S. NAVY Dodge) by 58 points. Veterans David Green (#27 Kleenex Ford) and Jason Keller (#35 McDonald’s Ford) are seventh and eighth, respectively with Green leading Keller 3,765 – 3,743 – a 22-point difference. Keller seeks his seventh consecutive finish in the NASCAR Busch Series Top 10 – second-best in series history – while Green goes for his third straight top-10 finish in his last three years of fulltime participation.
New faces for 2006 races preview at Homestead … The season finale at Homestead-Miami will provide a glimpse into the 2006 season for the NASCAR Busch Series. Three drivers who plan to participate in full- or part-time schedules in the series next season are entered in the Ford 300. The three are relative newcomers to NASCAR national series competition – Burney Lamar (#33 Outdoor Channel Chevrolet), the 2001 NASCAR AutoZone Elite Division, Southwest Series Rookie of the Year, who will drive for Kevin Harvick Inc. next season; Mark McFarland (#88 U.S. Navy Chevrolet), who is on board with Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s new JR Motorsports team and Ryan Moore (#81 Kraft Chevrolet), another standout from the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series. Moore has two NASCAR Busch Series career starts, both coming this season. His races ended early due to on-track incidents. Lamar made his series debut last month at Kansas. He started eighth but finished 41st due to an accident. McFarland, the 2003 NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series national champion, has nine series starts, and looks to make his first since Richmond in the fall of 2004 where he finished 16th, his career-best finish in the NASCAR Busch Series.
Mexican trio hopes to make Homestead history … Three natives of Mexico City look to close out the 2005 NASCAR Busch Series season Saturday at Miami. Carlos Contreras (#40 PartyPoker.net Dodge), Adrian Fernandez (#5 Lowe’s/Spectrum Chevrolet) and Jorge Goeters (#73 Red Cactus Salsa/US Mortgage Chevrolet) hope to become the first trio of Mexican drivers to start a NASCAR national series event at Homestead-Miami Speedway and culminate the year with three races where at least three Mexican drivers have started. Three or more Mexican drivers started at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City and again at California last September. Goeters captured the Busch Pole at Mexico City in his first NASCAR Busch Series start, and finished a career-best ninth at Watkins Glen last August. Fernandez posted a 10th-place finish at Mexico City, his best result in five starts this season. Contreras has also started five series events this year, and looks to improve upon a season-best of 32nd at Watkins Glen. “I have enjoyed my experience here in NASCAR, but I don’t know if I really want to do a full season,” Fernandez said when asked about 2006. “I think doing a few more races next year might be fun. I think everyone wants to continue the relationships that we have developed since March. Remember, this was just a one race deal and we have put all of the other races together since then. So everybody has worked very hard to make this happen.” Contreras and Fernandez are guaranteed starting spots in the race as their owners are ranked in the top 30 of the NASCAR Busch Series owner standings. Goeters will have to qualify on time.
Double-digit victories for three manufacturers is series first … Although Chevrolet clinched the 2005 Bill France Performance Cup in the NASCAR Busch Series two weeks ago, last week’s result provided a first for the award in the series. Carl Edwards’ (#60 Charter Communications Ford) exciting victory at Phoenix gave Ford 10 wins this season, and in addition to clinching second place in the standings, gave three manufacturers at least 10 wins in one season. Dodge also has 10 victories this year; it had seven wins the last three seasons combined. A win in the season finale would give Ford its most victories in three seasons. Chevrolet leads the manufacturers’ in wins at Homestead-Miami with six. Ford has three wins while Dodge seeks its first victory at Homestead.
This Week’s NASCAR Busch Series Leaders … Through 34 races of the 35-race season:
• Points leader – Martin Truex Jr. (4,791)
• Money won – Martin Truex Jr. ($1,555,098)
• Laps led – Martin Truex Jr. (705)
• Miles led – Martin Truex Jr. (995.63)
• Victories – Martin Truex Jr. (6)
• Poles – Carl Edwards (4)
• Top-five finishes – Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards, Martin Truex Jr. (15)
• Top-10 finishes – Clint Bowyer, Carl Edwards, Martin Truex Jr. (21)
• Races led – Martin Truex Jr. (19)
• Weeks in Top 10 – Carl Edwards, Reed Sorenson, Martin Truex Jr. (34)
ON THE RIGHT TRACK
Joe Nemechek (#87 Cellular One Chevrolet) leads all NASCAR Busch Series drivers with three wins at Homestead-Miami. No other driver has more than one victory. … Nemechek is tied with Mark Martin (#9 Pennzoil Ford) for most top fives (five) and leads all drivers with seven top-10 finishes. He is one of eight drivers to win a Busch Pole (1995). … Jason Keller and Nemechek are the only two drivers to have raced in each of the 10 NASCAR Busch Series events at Homestead. … Kevin Harvick (#21 Reese’s Chevrolet) has led the most laps (236). … Four former winners (Harvick in 2004, Nemechek in 1997, ’99, and 2001), Kasey Kahne (#6 Lawry’s Dodge – 2004) and Kevin Lepage (#72 Gunbroker.com Chevrolet – 1996) are entered. The wins were the first in NASCAR Busch Series competition for Kahne and Lepage
The NASCAR Busch Series point leader has topped the standings by 64 points or less seven times heading into the final race of the season. … No driver has been running at the finish at the end of every race this season. Stacy Compton (#59 Kingsford/Bush’s Baked Beans Ford) is the current running at the finish leader with 29 races. … The NASCAR Busch Series Raybestos Rookie of the Year competition is also coming down to the final race at Homestead-Miami. Carl Edwards leads Reed Sorenson (#41 Discount Tire Co. Dodge) by 11 points, 333-322. … John Andretti (#10 St. Jude “Racing to Save Lives” Ford) will attempt to make his second career start in the NASCAR Busch Series at Homestead. Andretti’s only other start came in the 1998 season opener at Daytona where he started 11th and finished 13th. … Ryan Newman (#39 Alltel Dodge) will go for his sixth win in nine races this season at Homestead; five of those wins came in consecutive starts for Newman. … Jason Keller is expected to make his 391st start in the NASCAR Busch Series at Homestead, a mark that dates to April 1991. At 391 races, he will have just one less than second-place Elton Sawyer (1983-2002) on the all-time list. He would enter the 2006 season needing 26 starts to catch leader Tommy Houston’s record of 417 from 1982-96.
ON DECK: 2005 NASCAR BUSCH SERIES AWARDS
NASCAR will recognize its 2005 NASCAR Busch Series champion, top 10 drivers and other award winners on Fri., Dec. 9 at the annual series awards ceremony at the Portofino Bay Hotel in Orlando, Fla. NASCAR Busch Series Champions Week events kick off on Tues., Dec. 6 in Tampa, Fla., when the series champion visits for media opportunities, then on Weds., Dec. 7, a media luncheon featuring the champion will take place at the Rock ‘N Sports Bar & Grill in Ybor City.
What: Ford 300 (Race #35 of 35 in the NASCAR Busch Series). Where: Homestead-Miami Speedway, Homestead, Fla. When: 4:10pm/et, Saturday, Nov. 19. Track Layout: 1.5-mile oval. Race Length: 300 M / 200 L. Posted Awards: $1,428,059. TV: TNT, 4:00pm/et. Radio: MRN, XM Satellite. 2004 Winner: Kevin Harvick. 2004 Polesitter: Casey Mears. NASCAR Busch Series Top 10: 1. Martin Truex Jr. 4,791. 2. Clint Bowyer 4,727. 3. Carl Edwards 4,495. 4. Reed Sorenson 4,389. 5. Denny Hamlin 4,091. 6. Kenny Wallace 3,992. 7. Paul Menard 3,946. 8. David Green 3,765. 9. Jason Keller 3,743. 10. Greg Biffle 3,685. Pre-race schedule (all times local): Fri., Nov. 18 – Practice, 12 – 1:10 p.m.; 2:50 – 3:50 p.m. Sat., Nov. 19 – Qualifying 11:05 a.m. (impound).(NASCAR PR)(11-17-2005)
- Edwards wins at Phoenix: #60-Carl Edwards on the Arizona 200 presented by Walk the Line Phoenix International Raceway for his 5th win of the season, beating out #2-Clint Bowyer, who also moved 20 points closer to points leader #8-Martin Truex Jr. who finished 6th. Truex needs to finish 12th of better at Homestead next weekend to clinch the championship. Finishing 3rd was #17-Matt Kenseth followed by #21-Kevin Harvick and #66-Greg Biffle [who moved into 10th in the points even thou he has not raced in 8 of the 34 races. Another rough day for #6-Erin Crocker, involved in an early accident and finishing 40th. There were 6 caution flags for 36 laps and 6 lead changes among 5 drivers.
Race results at:
NASCAR.com – unoff
NASCAR.com – official[posted Monday](11-12-2005)
- Edwards wins pole at Phoenix:
#60-Carl Edwards went out late and won the pole for the Arizona 200 presented by Walk the Line at Phoenix International Raceway, beating out #20-Denny Hamlin for his 6th pole of 2005. Starting 3rd is up-and-coming #58-Regan Smith, Points leader #8-Martin Truex Jr. and #41-Reed Sorenson. 2nd in points #2-Clint Bowyer starts way back in 32nd. #6-Erin Crocker will start 13th. Only 3 drivers fialed to make the race: #19-Bobby Labonte [Grissom got the Champ Prov, his normal spot]; #91-Charlie Bradberry and #04-Eric McClure.
See Starting lineups:
BGNRacing.com – Starting Lineup
BGNRacing.com – Qualifying Results
- Leicht to drive for Yates: It was announced on TNT’s Phoenix race broadcast that Stephen Leicht has just signed a three-year development deal with Robert Yates Racing. Next season he is expected to split the #90 ride with another driver. This season the seat has been shared between Leicht (Phoenix was his second series start), Elliott Sadler and Dale Jarrett.(BGNRacing.com)(11-13-2005)
- Rogers in a 2nd Glynn Motorsports car: Clay Rogers will drive the #92 Glynn Motorsports Dodge in the Arizona 200 Busch Series race at Phoenix International Raceway this Saturday. Rogers, who has driven the Glynn Motorsports Truck Series #65 Dodge Ram in five events this year, looks to make his second Busch Series start of 2005 at PIR. Rogers has ten Busch Series starts, finishing a career best 8th at Gateway International Raceway in 2001. Steve Plattenberger, Competition Director and Crew Chief for the #65 Glynn Motorsports truck, will crew cheif this weekend on the #92 car.(Glynn Motorsports PR)(11-10-2005)
- Kevin Hamlin stays at #4: Kevin Hamlin will remain in the #4 Biagi Bros. Dodge as part of the Ganassi Racing development program in 2006.(NASCAR Scene via BGNRacing.com)(11-10-2005)
- FBR Hopes to stay 2 car team: #12/#14/#40 FitzBradshaw Racing hopes to field two teams next year, one for Joel Kauffman and the other for a driver to be named later.(NASCAR Scene via BGNRacing.com)(11-10-2005)
- Final 2005 Busch start for Crocker: Erin Crocker will make her last Busch Series start of the season in this weekend’s Arizona 200 driving the #6 Ragu Dodge. Crocker will pull double duty this weekend, driving in the NASCAR Truck Series race on Friday and the NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday.(919 Marketing/Hungry Drivers PR)(11-10-2005)
- Bradberry to attempt Phoenix: After a thwarted debut attempt in Memphis, TommyRaz Motorsports will again field the #91 Energy Drink Dodge Intrepid for driving sensation Charlie Bradberry in the Busch Series Phoenix 200 at Phoenix International Raceway Park on November 12, 2005. Bradberry is the 2003 Southeast Series Champion and younger brother of former Cup driver Gary Bradberry. For more information on Charlie Bradberry and TommyRaz Motorsports, visit their websites at tommyrazmotorsports.com and charliebradberry.net.(11-10-2005)
- What’s up at KCR? Catchfence.com spoke with Busch Series owner Keith Coleman last week before Texas Motor Speedway. One of Catchfence.com main questions was whether or not Rookie-of-the-Year candiate and upcoming female driver Kim Crosby will be driving at Phoenix and Homestead. “Right now, Kim will run the remainder of the season,” said Coleman. However, NASCAR released it’s entry list for Phoenix and Crosby is not entered. Catchfence.com wanted the truth, so we dug up Kim Crosby’s phone number and went straight to the source. Crosby, who also has experience in the ARCA Series told us she would not be in a car for the remainder of the 2005 season. However, Crosby did state will continue her appearances for her current primary sponsor Vassarette in the final two races of the 2005 Busch Series season. Crosby’s other sponsors Golden Flake Snack Foods and Boudreaux’s Buttpaste also informed us, that they will continue to back their driver whereever she may land in 2006. As for Crosby, she is currently exploring all of her options for next season.(Catchfence.com)(11-8-2005)
- NASCAR Busch Series News and Notes: Phoenix:
Truex Jr. can clinch title, but no quit in Bowyer … Martin Truex Jr. (#8 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet) could clinch his second consecutive NASCAR Busch Series title Saturday at Phoenix. The reigning champion is 84 points ahead of second-place Clint Bowyer (#2 ACDelco Chevrolet) and can repeat his performance last year when he claimed the title with one race to go if he gains 106 or more points on Bowyer at Phoenix. Truex would need to lead Bowyer by 190 or more points heading to the finale at Homestead-Miami. Since the maximum points a driver can gain – or lose – in an event is 156, Bowyer could conceivably leave Phoenix with a lead of as many as 72 points over Truex. Bowyer has opened the door for Truex the last two races, but the defending champion hasn’t capitalized as much as he would have liked. Bowyer had to revert to backup cars at Memphis and Texas after being involved in accidents on his qualifying laps at both tracks, but he rallied nicely. He won at Memphis, and finished seventh at Texas, while Truex was third at Memphis and 11th at Texas. “We have got to get another win or finish in the top three and hope we can put some space between ourselves and the #8,” Bowyer said. “The last couple of weekends I have put us behind the 8-ball, wrecking in qualifying. But at this point in the season I can’t afford to let that happen again. I have to have a good qualifying effort and a strong run this weekend.” Bowyer has been the series’ hottest driver over the last six races.
Chevrolet wins Bill France Performance Cup … Kevin Harvick’s (#21 Reese’s Chevrolet) win last Saturday at Texas propelled Chevrolet to its 12th Bill France Performance Cup title in NASCAR Busch Series competition, and third in succession. With two races remaining, Chevy has 14 wins and 222 points, Ford has nine wins and 209 points and Dodge has 10 victories and 196 points. Second place is still being contested between Ford and Dodge. Chevrolet has clinched the championship in all three of NASCAR’s national series this season. This year’s manufacturer’s race in the NASCAR Busch Series has been the closest since the award’s inaugural season when Oldsmobile won with nine wins, while Chevrolet and Pontiac had eight victories apiece. If Ford can claim another win, it would mark the first time in series history that three manufacturers posted double-digit wins.
Yeley joins Fernandez at home in Phoenix … J.J. Yeley (#18 Vigoro/Home Depot Chevrolet) is a native of Phoenix and will join Adrian Fernandez racing on his home track. As he seeks his first NASCAR Busch Series victory, Yeley is confident coming back to Phoenix, as evidenced by his 10th-place finish at the track this past spring. “I can’t wait to go back home to Phoenix,” he said. “We ran up front all night earlier in the year, but the handling went away on us.” The former open-wheel driver who made his NASCAR debut only last year is impressed with NASCAR’s impact in the desert southwest. “It’s awesome to see the growth in the Phoenix area in general, but it’s really cool to see the growth of NASCAR fans in the area,” he said. “NASCAR has done a great job in bringing our sport to different areas of the country. There is a large population base to pull from in the Phoenix area, and now that there are two NASCAR weekends at PIR, the fan base will continue to grow and grow. Being a Phoenix native, that’s just incredible to see.”
Positions still up for grabs in Top 10 … Martin Truex Jr. and Clint Bowyer aren’t the only two NASCAR Busch Series drivers vying for a top championship finish. There are still questions about who will comprise the final group of Top-10 drivers headed for Champions Week in Orlando next month. Entering Saturday’s race at Phoenix, there are six drivers who were not in the top 10 in the standings with two races to go one year ago. Five of those drivers – Raybestos Rookies Carl Edwards (#60 World Financial Group Ford), Reed Sorenson (#41 Discount Tire Co. Dodge) and Denny Hamlin (#20 Rockwell Automation Chevrolet) and first-year fulltime drivers Bowyer and Paul Menard (#11 Menard’s Chevrolet) are more settled into their various top seven slots in the championship standings than the drivers occupying places eight through 10. Only 72 points stand between 1994 NASCAR Busch Series champion David Green (#27 Kleenex Ford) in eighth and 10th-place David Stremme (#14 U.S. NAVY Dodge). Jason Keller (#35 McDonald’s Ford) is in ninth, just 10 points behind Green and 62 in front of Stremme. Stremme is in danger of losing his slot as two drivers have a realistic shot at catching him. Greg Biffle (#66 Duraflame Ford), the 2002 series champion, is 36 points out of 10th while Yeley is 68 points behind.
This Week’s NASCAR Busch Series Leaders … Through 33 races of the 35-race season:
• Points leader – Martin Truex Jr. (4,641)
• Money won – Martin Truex Jr. ($1,513,498)
• Laps led – Martin Truex Jr. (705)
• Miles led – Martin Truex Jr. (995.63)
• Victories – Martin Truex Jr. (6)
• Poles – Carl Edwards, Kasey Kahne, Ryan Newman (3)
• Top-five finishes – Martin Truex Jr. (15)
• Top-10 finishes – Martin Truex Jr., Clint Bowyer, Carl Edwards (20)
• Races led – Martin Truex Jr. (19)
• Weeks in Top 10 – Carl Edwards, Reed Sorenson, Martin Truex Jr. (33)
ON THE RIGHT TRACK
Greg Biffle is the only driver to win two NASCAR Busch Series races at Phoenix; he was victorious in 2001 and won the spring race last April. … No driver has won from the Busch Pole at Phoenix. … Biffle has the most top fives (four) and top 10s (five) of any driver at Phoenix. He also has led the most laps (409) and has the best average finish (4.0) among all NASCAR Busch Series drivers there. … Jason Keller is the only driver to have competed in the previous seven races at Phoenix. … Ron Hornaday Jr. (#30 Smith & Wesson Chevrolet) has led the most races at Phoenix (three).
With two races to go, the points leader has won the NASCAR Busch Series championship in 22 of the series’ previous 23 seasons. Scott Riggs led Ron Hornaday Jr. by 17 points with two races left in 2003, however Brian Vickers claimed the championship, coming from 23 points behind at the final race at Homestead. … Denny Hamlin is entered in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix on Sunday. Hamlin, who will run a full schedule in both the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup and NASCAR Busch Series next season, has finished in the top 10 in three of his five premier series starts this year, including a career-best seventh at Texas last Sunday. Johnny Sauter (#1 Miccosukee Dodge) is also entered in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race. … The inaugural O’Reilly Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway last Saturday aired on TNT, registered 1,338,000 viewers and 1,076,000 households airing against other sporting events that included college football and the PGA Tour Championship. … Erin Crocker (#6 Ragu Dodge) is scheduled to compete in her final NASCAR Busch Series race of 2005 at Phoenix. She is also entered in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event and will attempt to make her debut in that series before running a fulltime schedule next season. … Scott Glynn is a resident of Chandler, Ariz. His drivers, Regan Smith (#58 Glynn Motorsports Dodge) and Clayton Rogers (#92 Glynn Motorsports Dodge), are entered at Phoenix. … The 2005 season marks the first time in the history of the Raybestos Rookie program where two drivers surpassed $1 million in earnings. Reed Sorenson ($1,243,466) was joined by Hamlin ($1,008,170) following Texas. Fellow rookie Carl Edwards needs to collect $4,815 to join the exclusive club. Only three other Raybestos Rookies have surpassed $1 million in single-season earnings since the program was created in 1989: Kyle Busch ($2,027,050), Greg Biffle ($1,623,546) and Riggs ($1,170,846).
What: Arizona 200 presented by Walk the Line (Race #34 of 35 in the NASCAR Busch Series).
Where: Phoenix International Raceway, Avondale, Ariz.
When: 3:40 p.m. ET, Saturday, Nov. 12.
Track Layout: 1-mile oval.
Race Length: 200 L / 200 M.
Posted Awards: $1,310,149.
TV: TNT, 3:40 p.m. ET.
Radio: MRN, XM Satellite.
2004 Winner: Jamie McMurray
2004 Polesitter: Kyle Busch.
Pre-race schedule (all times local): Fri., Nov. 11 – Practice, 12 – 1:10 p.m.; 2:50 – 3:50 p.m. Sat., Nov. 12 – Qualifying 9:05 a.m. (impound).(NASCAR PR)(11-8-2005)
- Leffler to stay at Braun: Jason Leffler has signed on to drive the #32 Braun Racing Chevy for the full 2006 Busch Series season.(Braun Racing PR via BGNRacing.com)(11-8-2005)
- Sherman to the #49? UPDATE: hearing Busch Series driver Brent Sherman could be headed to the #49 BAM Racing Dodge with Serta as the sponsor.(11-4-2005)
UPDATE: Brent Sherman is expected to take over as driver of BAM Racing’s #49 with Schwann’s and Serta sharing sponsorship. Sherman, 31, currently drives the #10 Ford for ppc Racing in the Busch Series and has 25 career Busch starts. His best finish was ninth in the spring at Talladega.(Sporting News)(11-7-2005)
- Harvick wins at Texas, Newman 16th: #21-Kevin Harvick won the O’Reilly Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway for his 4th win of 2005 and 17th career wn. Harvick now has 13 top 10’s, including 12 top fives, in 19 races this season. He has finished in the top five in four of the last five races that he has competed in. #66-Greg Biffle, #60-Carl Edwards, #41-Reed Sorenson and #57-Kyle Busch rounded out the top five. Points leader #8-Martin Truex Jr. finished 11th, while 2nd in points, #2-Clint Bowyer, who started last in a backup, finished 7th, picking up a few points and now is behind Truex Jr. by 84 points with two races to go.
#39-Ryan Newman started on the pole and dominated the first half of the race, however, he failed to pit on lap 106 under caution as the other 17 cars on the lead lap picked up fuel and fresh tires. Newman led the most laps of the race became the series’ lap leader for the season even though he has only competed in eight events.
Harvick was consoled in victory lane by his wife DeLana and car owner Richard Childress. The Harvick’s are in the process of grieving over the loss of DeLana’s father, former Busch Series driver John Linville, who lost his years-long battle with cancer earlier this week. Linville was a veteran of 136 NASCAR Busch Series starts. There were 7 caution flags for 26 laps and 9 lead changed among 5 drivers.
Race results at:
NASCAR.com – official [posted Mon]
NASCAR.com – unoff.(11-5-2005)
- Kenny and AutoZone stay with ppc Racing: Kenny Wallace and ppc Racing announced Saturday plans to continue their relationship with sponsor AutoZone for 2006. Also in the works, Wallace said a sponsor and driver announcement for a second team is in the near future. His current teammate, Brent Sherman, is leaving ppc to pilot the #49 Nextel Cup ride next season.(BGNRacing.com)(11-5-2005)
- Newman wins pole at Texas: #39-Ryan Newman won the pole for the O’Reilly Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway with a speed of 189.500mph. #14-David Stremme starts 2nd, followed by #21-Kevin Harvick, #47-Jon Wood and #66-Greg Biffle. Points leader, #8-Martin Truex Jr. will start 10th and 2nd in points #2-Clint Bowyer wrecked during qualifying, will officially start 20th but goes to a backup, will start at the rear of the field. Missing the race were: #99-Michael Waltrip, #72-Kevin Lepage, #30-Ron Hornaday, #0-Eric McClure, #70-Chad Blount, #7-Jeff Fuller, #23-Chris Wimmer, #73-Jorge Goeters, #49-Steve Grissom, #10-Brent Sherman, #92-Tracy Hines.
See Starting lineups:
BGNRacing.com – Starting Lineup
BGNRacing.com – Qualifying Results
- 2nd Harvick team in 2006: Kevin Harvick Inc. (KHI) announced a partnership with Goodlettsville, Tenn., based Dollar General Corp. for the 2006 NASCAR Busch Series season. Rookie-of-the-Year contender Burney Lamar will drive the #77 Dollar General Chevy in all 35 events on the Busch Series schedule. Lamar, a 25 year-old native of West Sacramento, Calif., currently competes on a limited schedule for KHI in the NASCAR West Series, Craftsman Truck Series and Busch Series. Lamar also competes full-time in the NASCAR Elite Division Southwest Series. In addition to Lamar’s #77 entry, Tony Stewart and Kevin Harvick will also compete in Dollar General Chevrolets for KHI. Stewart and Harvick will drive two Busch Series events each in the #33 Dollar General Chevrolet. Lamar’s Dollar General car will be one of two full-time Busch teams that KHI will field in 2006. In addition to Lamar’s car, KHI will field the #33 Chevrolet, which will feature multiple sponsors and drivers. Dollar General will enter into its second year as a primary sponsor in the NASCAR Busch Series. It is the only major sports sponsorship in the company’s 66-year history. “We’re pleased to announce our partnership with Kevin Harvick, who has established a winning record both as a driver and as a team owner,” said Rick McNeely, Dollar General vice president of merchandising. “Many of our customers and employees are already big NASCAR fans, and we believe they’ll be enthusiastic fans of Burney Lamar, one of NASCAR’s most-talked about up-and-coming young drivers.”(Kevin Harvick Inc. PR)(11-4-2005)
- Rockwell back with Gibbs thru 2008: Rockwell Automation announced that it has extended its sponsorship of the #20 JGR Busch Series car until 2008. Current driver, Denny Hamlin, is scheduled to run all 35 races next year in pursuit of his first NASCAR Busch Series title. Next season will mark Rockwell Automation’s tenth year of sponsorship in the NASCAR Busch Series and their fourth season as primary sponsor of the #20 Joe Gibbs Racing Busch Series Entry.(Rockwell Automation PR)(11-4-2005)
- Timberland PRO back on the #2: #2-Clint Bowyer will be running a special Timberland PRO paint scheme again, this time at Texas on Nov 5.(PR)(11-4-2005)
- Smith gets sponsor for Texas: The O’Reilly Challenge Busch Series race at Texas Motor Speedway Saturday will mark two firsts for the Glynn Motorsports #58 Dodge Charger team. Who’s Your Daddy energy drink will make its first entry into NASCAR as the primary sponsor for the #58 car at Texas. Additionally, the Glynn Motorsports team will receive an extra boost of energy in the engine department by way of Evernham Racing Engines.(Glynn Motorsports PR)(11-4-2005)
- Frazier hired as RWI crew chief: Officials of RWI Racing, LLC announced that veteran mechanic Bryant Frazier, has been hired as the team’s crew chief, effective immediately. Frazier replaces interim crew chief Steve Darne, who will stay with the team in his previous role as car chief. Darne was named interim crew chief midway through the 2005 season, following the release of the team’s previous crew chief, Blake Bainbridge. “We’re very pleased to have a crew chief of Bryant’s caliber on board with us. He has a lot of veteran experience and definitely has proven his leadership ability in the garage,” said RWI Racing team owner, Rusty Wallace. “We have a young and talented team; hopefully the veteran experience that Bryant brings will be what we need to put our Dodges in victory lane. Steve Darne was put in a tough situation and did a great job for us this season. He’s a great asset to our organization and we look forward to continuing to have him on our team.”(RWI PR)(11-3-2005)
- Chris Wimmer signs with KCR #23: Keith Coleman Racing (KCR) has signed Chris Wimmer to be the driver of the #23 Busch Series entry. Armed with a three-year contract and an imminent major sponsorship announcement, Wimmer is ready to make the jump to the Busch Series beginning with the O’Reilly Challenge in Texas on Saturday. “I’m so excited to be racing on the Busch Series,” said Wimmer. “I’ve competed with about half of these guys in the past in other series and I’m looking forward to racing with them again.” The brother of Nextel Cup regular Scott Wimmer, who drives the #22 Caterpillar Dodge for Bill Davis Racing, Chris is a budding Nascar protégé who has an impressive resume to go along with his bloodlines. He will be making his first Busch Series start at Texas Motor Speedway.(KCR PR)(11-3-2005)
- Partypoker teams up with FitzBradshaw: FitzBradshaw Racing has signed a three-race marketing partnership with PartyPoker.net, the world’s largest online poker school. The sponsorship takes to the starting grid on November 5 at the O’Reilly Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway. PartyPoker.net, a subsidiary of PartyGaming, will be the primary sponsor of FitzBradshaw Racing’s #40 driven by Carlos Contreras at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In addition, PartyPoker.net will appear as an associate sponsor for FitzBradshaw Racing’ss #12 and #40 for the remainder of the 2005 race season. PartyPoker.net will run a week long promotional campaign prior to the Homestead race. The promotion will include several events in and around the Miami area, and a tour of Univision Studios with the FitzBradshaw Racing-PartyPoker.net racing simulator. Fans will be able to register to win NASCAR prizes including: a position as an Honorary Pit Crew Member at a 2006 race, a Carlos Contreras race worn suit and NASCAR laptops (by Cisnet). To qualify to win, fans can log onto PartyPoker.net and open a free account stating they heard about this promotion via “NASCAR”. The promotion, running from November 7 thru to November 27, is open to all US and Latin American residents of 21 years and over. More info at PartyPoker.net.(FitzBradshaw Racing)(11-3-2005)
- NASCAR Busch Series News and Notes: Texas
A salute to 25 years of NASCAR Busch Series history …
NASCAR will recognize 25 years of NASCAR Busch Series history in 2006 with its “25 Seasons Running” marketing and media campaign. The series was founded in 1982 as the Budweiser Late Model Sportsman Series, and has since grown into the #2 motorsports series in the United States. The campaign also includes a commemorative “25 Seasons Running” logo which will appear in many NASCAR media outlets in 2006. Anheuser-Busch has been title sponsor of the series since its inception, making it one of the longest-running sports sponsorships in America.
Time running down in championship points battle …
Reigning NASCAR Busch Series champion Martin Truex Jr. (#8 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet) has remained at the top of the point standings for the last 16 weeks, yet came within 26 points of losing his lead to Clint Bowyer (#2 Timberland Chevrolet) after Richmond. In the next three races, Truex bounced back and now leads Bowyer by a 100-point margin with three races remaining. At this time last season, Truex held the lead by 176 points over Kyle Busch (#57 Lowe’s/KOBALT Chevrolet).
Bowyer making all the right moves …
While time is running short for Clint Bowyer’s challenge for the championship, he’s doing all he can to keep his team out front. Over the last six races, Bowyer has recorded three top-five finishes including his win at Memphis. He’s posted an average finish of 11.0 in those races, second-best in the series and better than Martin Truex Jr.’s average finish of 12.8 during the same period. Bowyer has completed 5,969 of a possible 6,054 laps this season, the highest percentage of any driver in the series (98.6%). Bowyer can also look forward to a minor milestone at Texas; his next NASCAR Busch Series start will be his 50th in the series. Raybestos Rookie of the Year race is closest-ever …
The current point spread for the NASCAR Busch Series Raybestos Rookie of the Year title is the closest-ever in the 17-year history of the award. Carl Edwards (#60 Charter Communications Ford) leads Reed Sorenson (#41 Discount Tire Co. Dodge) by a 15-point margin (337-322) in the standings, which are calculated separately from the series championship points standings. To date, the closest margin for the NASCAR Busch Series Raybestos Rookie of the Year was 20 points, when Kevin Harvick (#21 Reese’s Chevrolet) won the award over Ron Hornaday Jr. (#30 Smith & Wesson Chevrolet) in 2000. Newman: Five wins in seven races; aiming for sixth straight at Texas …
Ryan Newman (#39 Sony Dodge) is aiming for his sixth victory in what should be his eighth start in the NASCAR Busch Series this year. Newman has won every race he’s entered since Watkins Glen in August, and will try to become the first driver in series history to win six races in six starts. Sam Ard, the 1983 NASCAR Busch Series champion, holds the record for consecutive wins with four, which he set that season. Close calls …
April’s NASCAR Busch Series event at Texas Motor Speedway was one of the most competitive in track history. Ten drivers exchanged the lead on 17 occasions, and just 37 laps were run under caution. Kasey Kahne won the race by a .304-second margin – which followed Bristol as the second consecutive NASCAR Busch Series race with a margin of victory less than one half-second. To date in 2005, the NASCAR Busch Series has produced 10 races with a winning margin of less than a half-second, most recently at Lowe’s Motor Speedway where Ryan Newman defeated Elliott Sadler (#90 CitiFinancial Ford) by .313-second. Lewis supports sponsor with Marine Corps 8K run …
Ashton Lewis Jr. (#25 U.S. Marine Corps Ford) traveled to Washington, D.C. last Sunday and completed the Marine Corps Marathon 8K run, a 4.96-mile precursor to the annual Marine Corps Marathon through the streets of our Nation’s Capital. Starting at the Iwo Jima War Memorial, Lewis and fellow Team Rensi Motorsports employee Rob Winchester ran an 8:26 minute per mile pace and crossed the finish line with a time of 41:26. Winchester was credited with finishing 151st and Lewis 152nd out of 1,065 competitors. “It was a great experience to see all the people out there supporting the runners, especially the men and women in uniform,” Lewis said. “Rob and I talked about it and we are going to set a goal of training for the marathon next year.”
Bill France Performance Cup one of tightest races in series history …
With three races remaining, the chase for the 2005 Bill France Performance Cup is one of the closest in NASCAR Busch Series history. Only 21 points separate leader Chevrolet (213 points) from third-place Dodge (192). Chevrolet has 13 wins this year while Dodge has 10 – four more than its last two seasons combined. Second-place Ford (203 points) has nine wins, and should it post one more victory, it would mark the first time in series history that three manufacturers registered double-digit wins in the same season. This year’s race is the closest in the win category since 1991 when Oldsmobile won the title and posted nine victories. Chevrolet and Pontiac had eight wins while Buick collected six victories that season. Heading to Texas, Chevrolet and Ford have each won four times at the 1.5-mile track in NASCAR Busch Series competition, and Dodge captured its lone win there this past April. Double Duty at Texas …
With each of NASCAR’s three national series converging at Texas Motor Speedway this weekend, several NASCAR Busch Series regulars are taking advantage of the opportunity to race in the other series. Martin Truex Jr., Johnny Sauter (#1 Miccosukee Dodge), Denny Hamlin (#20 Rockwell Automation Chevrolet), Reed Sorenson and Carl Edwards are all set to race in both the Saturday’s O’Reilly Challenge Saturday and in Sunday’s Dickies 500. Regan Smith (#58 Glynn Motorsports Dodge) is entered in Friday’s NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race while last year’s NASCAR Busch Series championship runner-up, Kyle Busch is pulling “triple duty,” aiming to participate in all three series events. He has one win in the NASCAR Busch Series (Charlotte in May) and one in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series (California Speedway last September) competition this season to go along with three wins in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series this year, including last week at Atlanta. After O’Reilly Challenge, fans take to the track …
The next Tyson Fun Walk NASCAR On Track for Charity fundraising event will take place Saturday, one hour after the O’Reilly Challenge is concluded. NASCAR fans participating in the event will have the opportunity to walk on the racetrack while contributing to the benefit of thousands of children. For additional information and to register for the walk, visit www.speedwaycharities.org.
ON THE RIGHT TRACK
In nine previous NASCAR Busch Series races at Texas, Mark Martin has won three races, with six other drivers – Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kevin Harvick, Jeff Purvis, Joe Nemecheck (#87 Cellular One Chevrolet), Matt Kenseth (#9 Pennzoil Ford) and Kasey Kahne (#6 Hellmann’s Mayonnaise Dodge) – recording one victory each. Nemecheck has logged the most top-five finishes there (four), while Jeff Burton and Kenseth have each finished in the top 10 in seven Texas races.
This Week’s NASCAR Busch Series Leaders …
Through 32 races of the 35-race season:
• Points leader – Martin Truex Jr. (4,511)
• Money won – Martin Truex Jr. ($1,482,773)
• Laps led – Martin Truex Jr. (705)
• Miles led – Martin Truex Jr. (995.63)
• Victories – Martin Truex Jr. (6)
• Poles – Carl Edwards, Kasey Kahne, Martin Truex Jr. (3)
• Top-five finishes – Martin Truex Jr. (15)
• Top-10 finishes – Martin Truex Jr. (20)
• Races led – Martin Truex Jr. (19)
• Weeks in Top 10 – Carl Edwards, Reed Sorenson, Martin Truex Jr. (32)
Jorge Goeters (#73 Red Cactus Salsa Chevrolet) will join fellow Mexico native Adrian Fernandez (#5 Lowe’s/Spectrum Chevrolet) at Texas. Goeters won the Busch Pole at the historic Mexico City race last March while Fernandez finished 10th. …
Bobby Labonte (#19 Slim Jim/Act II Chevrolet) is entered at Texas along with nephew Justin. …
Among the drivers who tested the “Car of Tomorrow” at Atlanta Motor Speedway this week were NASCAR Busch Series drivers Carl Edwards and Martin Truex Jr. … Among the current top 10, just four drivers – Truex, David Green (#27 Kleenex Ford), Jason Keller (#35 McDonald’s Ford) and Kenny Wallace (#22 AutoZone Ford) were in the top 10 at this time last year. …
Team owner Frank Cicci announced that Randy LaJoie and Todd Bodine will continue to share seat time in the #34 Dollar General Chevrolet. Bodine will drive the car at Texas and in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, while LaJoie will drive at Phoenix International Raceway. …
Chris Wimmer (#23 BMAR-Vassarette Chevrolet), brother of current NASCAR NEXTEL Cup driver Scott Wimmer, has joined Keith Coleman Racing and hopes to make his NASCAR Busch Series debut at Texas. Chris has started 17 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races over the last two years. He placed 17th last week at Atlanta.
Next Race: O’Reilly Challenge
Where: Texas Motor Speedway, Fort Worth, Texas
When: Sat., Nov. 5.
Track layout: 1.5-mile oval.
Race length: 200 laps, 300 miles.
Posted awards: $1,155,720.
TV: TNT 2:00 p.m. (ET).
Radio: MRN/XM Satellite.
2004 Winner: Inaugural event.
Pre-race schedule: Friday, Nov. 4 – practice 9-11:15 a.m., Busch Pole qualifying 5:05 p.m.(NASCAR PR)(11-3-2005)
- Hines to drive 2nd Glynn Motorsports car at Texas: Tracy Hines will drive a second Glynn Motorsports Busch Series entry this Saturday in the O’Reilly Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway. Hines, a veteran of the Craftsman Truck Series, will be making his first start for Glynn Motorsports behind the wheel of the #92 Glynn Motorsports Dodge Charger. Hines recently signed a two year agreement to drive for Glynn Motorsports [didn’t say Busch or Trucks]. Hines will be making his fourth Busch Series appearance of the 2005 season. The Newcastle, IN driver qualified a season best 5th at Indianapolis Raceway Park back in August.(Glynn Motorsports PR)(11-3-2005)
- Smith and Wesson Honorary crew chiefs named: Smith & Wesson Corp., the legendary, 153-year-old global provider of products and services for safety, security, protection and sport, will feature two nationally renowned law enforcement heroes as honorary crew chiefs at the #30 Smith & Wesson Chevy SKI Motorsports’ final two Busch Series events of the year at Texas Motor Speedway and Phoenix International Raceway. In this special tribute to America’s law enforcement heroes, Smith & Wesson has partnered with the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) Grand Lodge national headquarters, which recently reviewed “Heroes” nominated by the FOP Lodge in each state. From that distinguished list of nominees, Detective Jennifer Fulford-Salvano of the Orange County (Fla.) Sheriff’s Office, and Officer James Niggemeyer of the Columbus (Ohio) Police Department, were selected to receive national honors by the Grand Lodge.
Officer Niggemeyer, who brought an end to a deadly siege in a famed Columbus nightclub last December by shooting and killing the gunman, will be honorary crew chief for the Smith & Wesson Racing team during the O’Reilly Challenge event at Texas on Nov. 4-5. Among the four people killed by the gunman that fateful night in Columbus was rock guitarist “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott. Three others were injured in the incident. Officer Niggemeyer was the first to respond to the incident and ended it some three minutes after the initial 9-1-1 call, saving further casualties as the gunman held a hostage in a headlock armed with dozens of rounds of ammunition.
Detective Fulford, Smith & Wesson’s honorary crew chief for the Busch Series 200 at Phoenix on Nov. 11-12, was shot 10 times a year ago last May while trying to rescue three young children from two gunmen in a residential garage, but still had the wherewithal to shoot and fatally injure both gunmen and helped to bring an end to that siege without further incident. She was back on the job less than four months later and currently works in the OCSF’s Child Abuse Unit.
In addition to honoring Niggemeyer and Fulford, Smith & Wesson will host numerous FOP guests at the Texas and Phoenix races in a VIP hospitality venue. The #30 Smith & Wesson Chevrolet, driven by two-time Craftsman Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday, Jr., will also sport a unique “black-and-white” law enforcement paint scheme, with the FOP logo displayed on the deck lid.
Commemorative racing merchandise honoring “American Heroes” featuring the FOP logo and “black-and-white” race car are currently on sale in conjunction with this special recognition program. A portion of the proceeds of these merchandise sales – which include stylish t-shirts, hats and scale replicas of the race car – will be donated by Smith & Wesson Racing to the FOP’s Grand Lodge Foundation. Items also are available at the Smith & Wesson Racing trackside trailer at NASCAR events, at selected collector’s shops and sporting goods stores nationwide, at www.smith-wesson-racing.com in the Smith & Wesson Racing Store, as well as the QVC shopping network.(PR)(11-1-2005)
- Moore released from DEI? UPDATE: Busch North driver, Ryan Moore has been released by DEI stemming from his actions from the Busch North Series’ Lime Rock race weekend. Moore was penalized for hitting another competitor’s car and for failing to follow the directive of an official. He was scheduled to run the Busch race in Homestead for the DEI and a part-time schedule in 2006.(BGNRacing.com), had heard this a week ago, asked DEI PR folks and was told no way, Moore was still in DEI’s plans. guess something changed.(10-21-2005)
UPDATE: It was reported a week ago that Ryan Moore was released from his development program contract by Dale Earnhardt Inc. Now it appears that is untrue. According to a pay article on daleearnhardtinc.com, Ryan will remain with the team and attempt to qualify for the season-ending Busch Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.(DSM) NOTE: Moore is scheduled to test the #81 Chevy at Homestead tomorrow and Wednesday. Matt Kenseth, Mark Martin, Kevin Hamlin, and Reed Sorenson are also scheduled to test their Busch cars.(BGNRacing.com)(11-1-2005)
- Bodine/Lajoie to run #34 car: Owner Frank Cicci has announced his driver choices in the #34 Dollar General Chevy for the three remaining races on the 2005 Busch Series schedule. Todd Bodine, who replaced Randy LaJoie behind the wheel of the FCR machine for the races at Kansas Speedway and the Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte for the Dollar General 300, will return to drive the Frank Cicci Racing with Jim Kelly ride for the upcoming races at Texas and Homestead. Bodine was strong in both races only to crash out in the United Way 300 in Kansas and exit with a burnt piston late in the race at Lowe/s Motor Speedway. LaJoie, who returned to the driver’s seat last weekend in Memphis and finished 25th after running in the top 15 for the majority of the race, will drive the car in the Phoenix as Cicci completes his evaluation project that will help shape the team for the 2006 campaign. “We are discussing various sponsorship options for next season, and when that is finalized, a final choice of driver will be made at that time”, Cicci explained. “Todd and Randy have done exactly what was intended by sharing the ride and thus allowing us to get information from two drivers on just where we are at this juncture of the season. Their input will enable us to make the changes that will only make this race team stronger”, Cicci added.(FCR PR)(11-1-2005)
- New Procedure for Determining Race Line-Ups: NASCAR has adopted a new procedure for establishing the starting race fields in the NASCAR Busch Series that will go into effect this season, NASCAR officials announced today. NASCAR has changed the system by simplifying the procedure with teams no longer accruing provisionals throughout the season to gain entry into the starting fields. While starting positions one through 42 in the NASCAR Busch Series still will be determined by qualifying speed, the new system will assure the highest-ranked 30 positions of the NASCAR Busch Series owner championship points that have entered the event prior to the entry deadline one of those starting positions in the field, providing they have made an attempt to qualify. The remaining 12 positions will be assigned to those drivers with the fastest qualifying speeds whose car owners are not among the top 30. The final starting position – the champion’s provisional – can be utilized by a car owner whose driver is a current or past NASCAR Busch Series champion who participated as a driver during their 2004 season and was entered in the event for that owner in that car prior to the entry deadline. If there is more than one series champion vying for the position, it will be given to the most recent series champion. If the final provisional starting position – 43rd in the NASCAR Busch Series – is not filled by a current or past series champion, it will be assigned to the next eligible car owner according to qualifying results. Through the first five races of the season for the NASCAR Busch Series, the top 30 of the 2004 owner championship points entered in the event prior to the entry deadline will be assured one of the 42 starting positions in the field, provided they have made an attempt to qualify. In addition, the owner’s entry must have made an attempt to qualify in all 34 events in 2004 to be eligible for one of those 30 positions. From the sixth race on, the highest-ranked 30 positions of the current owner championship points will be assured one of those positions as long as their entry has made an attempt to qualify in the previous 2005 events up to that point. In the event that conditions prevent qualifying from being run, starting positions will be assigned according to the respective series’ 2005 Rule Book.(NASCAR PR)(1-13-2005)