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October 1999 News Archives


(10-31-1999)

  • PJ Jones to Cup? During the CART race, Paul Page mentioned that CART driver PJ Jones was looking to get a ride in the Winston Cup series for the 2000 series(ESPN CART Coverage)(10-31-1999)

    (10-30-1999)

  • Ford Yes, Chevy…Not Yet: NASCAR has approved Ford’s 2000 Taurus for competition following an exhaustive testing program in the wind tunnel and on the track. The 2000 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, which is also considered a somewhat radical departure from the current model, is in testing and awaiting final approval from NASCAR. (Speed Magazine/AP)(10-30-1999)
  • Bliss not signed…yet: Mike Bliss, who recently left the #30 Eel River Racing team and decided not to accept their 2000 deal, has not yet signed with AJ Foyt’s #14 Conseco team yet, but Bliss said on Friday’s RPM2Nite that he had a verbal agreement with the team and the reason he left Eel River Racing was that the sponsor deal fell through and the team couldn’t guarantee that it would run in 2000 without a sponsor(10-30-1999)

    (10-29-1999)

  • More on Bliss: Mike Bliss, a regular this season on the NASCAR Truck series, now appears to be the choice to drive for motorsports legend A. J. Foyt’s new #14 Pontiac team in Winston Cup next season. Just a week ago, it was announced that Bliss would drive next season for Eel River Racing in that team’s Pontiacs. Bliss went with that team to Rockingham last weekend and finished 42nd in the #30 Grand Prix, and was scheduled to drive that car for in the three races that remain this year. Earlier this week, however, Bliss met with Foyt about becoming the driver of the #14 Pontiacs that Foyt will field with sponsorship from Conseco. Although no official announcement has been made, an ESPN report and other sources say that Bliss and Foyt reached an agreement for 2000. What about the deal with Eel River, where Bliss was to reunite with his truck series crew chief Barry Dodson? Sources say that while Bliss and the team had a deal worked out, no contract had been signed. One reason for that might have been that Bliss wanted to wait to see if the team could finalize a pending deal with a primary sponsor. Foyt’s offer, meanwhile, comes from a team with sponsorship already in place. Eel River is already talking to drivers about the last three races of this season and about next season, while talks with a potential sponsor continue. Bliss will not be back in the car anymore this season(That’s Racin’/David PooleAND supposedly Foyt is pretty mad the story got out and says no one has signed to drive the car yet…..time will tell(10-29-1999)
  • Aircraft Accident UPDATE: Monday’s aircraft accident that took the life of Pro Golfer Payne Stewart also claimed the lives of Ray Evernham’s agents, Robert Fraley and Van Arden of Leader Enterprises Inc(RPM2Nite)(10-27-1999) — UPDATE: The NASCAR world also was saddened by Monday’s plane crash that killed Payne Stewart. Also aboard the aircraft were a pair of business agents: Robert Fraley, who represented Joe Gibbs, owner of the No. 18 and 20 teams; and Van Arden, who represented Ray Evernham, former crew chief of Jeff Gordon(Tennessean/Cox)(10-29-1999)
  • McDonald’s Reups: McDonald’s will renew its sponsorship with NASCAR. That’s a surprise to industry insiders who believed McDonald’s was ready to end its run as NASCAR’s “Official Drive-Through.” Burger King had pursued NASCAR for most of the year and appeared close to a deal during the summer, but sources told the Sports Business Journal that NASCAR President Bill France favored the incumbent. Neil Perry, who heads McDonald’s U.S. sports marketing, said a four year NASCAR sponsorship contract was sitting on his desk, waiting to be signed. McDonald’s current agreement expires at the end of the year. Next year is McDonald’s final year in its sponsorship of Bill Elliott’s #94 team and the fast-food restaurant plans to use Elliott’s 25th year in racing as a marketing platform in the Southeast next summer with themed cups and tray liners, television advertising and merchandise giveaways(Winston Cup Scene Magazine)(10-29-1999)
  • Atlanta Testing: Jimmy Spencer was the fastest of the four Winston Cup teams on hand Wednesday at AMS, traveling 189.210mph. #11-Brett Bodine, #25-Wally Dallenbach and #60-Geoffrey Bodine also tested, with Geoffrey Bodine turning laps in both his 1999 and 2000 Chevrolet Monte Carlos(News and Observer)(10-29-1999)
  • Polaris and Ford: Polaris has signed on as a “Crew Member”–or marketing partner–with Ford Motor Company and its imaginative new “Team Ford Racing” program. Team Ford Racing (TFR) will provide members with several exclusive benefits, including insider information about Ford racing programs and activities, opportunities to participate in TFR activities at events such as NASCAR Winston Cup races, and merchandise offers from “Crew Members” such as Polaris. The TFR program was officially introduced in September. Program details and membership applications will be available from Team Ford Racing by clicking on the banner at the top of this page. Information about the complete line of Polaris products is available from authorized Polaris dealers or from the Polaris home page on the Internet at: www.polarisindustries.com or the Victory Motorcycle web site at: www.victory-usa.com.(Polaris PR)(10-29-1999)
  • Blimp Crashes: not really NASCAR news, but they do cover the races, so I thought it would be of interest – in part: The Spirit of Akron’s 29-year-old pilot, Gerald Hissem, slowly guided the deflating blimp nose down into woods after computer problems forced him to land. He and the blimp video technician on board, Robert Peacock, 34, escaped the accident with minor cuts and bruises. No one on the ground was hurt after the slow descent that left the front part of the blimp’s balloon section collapsed and its tail sticking up over the trees…see the rest of the story at the Blimp crashes – Akron Beacon Journal(thanks to a few readers for the heads up)(10-29-1999)

    (10-28-1999)

  • #41 News UPDATE 2: Todd Bodine is testing the #41 Kodiak Chevy in Atlanta this week and will drive the car in the Cup season finale. As for 2000 plans, still no word on a driver, but Exxon/Superflo continues to be the rumor floating around as the sponsor(10-26-1999) — UPDATE: Derrike Cope will drive the #41 at Phoenix and Homestead — UPDATE 2: Larry Hedrick has secured a sponsor for 2000 and will announce it at Homestead next month. Hedrick still needs to settle on a driver and is talking to several candidates with Winston Cup experience. The sponsor is currently involved in the BGN Series but not in Winston Cup. Speculation centers around Exxon being the sponsor, but Hedrick would neither confirm nor deny it(Winston Cup Scene Magazine)(10-28-1999)
  • Bliss Leaves Eel River Racing UPDATE: Shocker! RPM2Nite reports that Mike Bliss will NOT drive the #30(#27?) Eel River Racing Pontiac but will drive the #14 Conseco Pontiac for AJ Foyt in 2000. A potential sponsor backed out of a deal with the #30 team allowing an out for Bliss. The team is now searching for a driver and a sponsor in 2000. Kodiak was rumored as a possible sponsor for the #30 team. RPM2Nite confirmed with Eel River Racing that Bliss has left, no comment from the AJ Foyt team. No idea if Bliss will drive the remaining three Cup races in the #30(10-27-1999) — UPDATE: Bliss will not drive the car at any of the remaining Cup races, the team is looking for a driver to finish out the season and for 2000(NOL)(10-28-1999)
  • Grissom News: For NASCAR Winston Cup driver Steve Grissom, it’s been a long “silly season.” The 36-year-old native of Gadsden, AL., spent much of the year in discussions with a variety of Winston Cup car owners, listening to proposals and offers. “Every driver in this garage has been through silly season one way or another, and sometimes it’s kind of neat and sometimes it’s no fun at all,”Grissom said. “What every driver hopes for is the ‘no-brainer’ offer, where the best team in racing offers you more resources and more financing that you ever dreamed of. What every driver gets is usually a lot closer to the line of what’s good and what’s not so good. “I’ve spoken with some of the biggest names in this sport and I’ve spoken with some on other levels. I’ve even spoken with some who aren’t in stock car racing at all,” Grissom continued. “Where there were offers, we weighed them pretty heavily. Where they were promising situations, we tried to be honest in what we could give them.” Grissom has continued to speak with some Winston Cup owners (“including a couple who would really surprise you if I told you what they were planning,” said Grissom) and is also looking at other opportunities. “There are other opportunities out there and some pretty good ones too,” he said. “I have a family, so I have to take a look at everything that comes up and look at it as seriously as I can. There have been a few that I had to step back and say, ‘Whoa!’ There are a lot of people wanting to build really good programs out there. “Winston Cup is still my number one goal and it’s still where I’m headed one way or another,” Grissom continued. “Right now I just want to make absolutely sure I take the right road to get there.”(Williams Co)(10-28-1999)
  • NASCAR and Newsweek: I hear Newsweek is currently working on a story that will feature three NASCAR Winston Cup teams – #12 Mobil One Taurus, Jeremy Mayfield; #22 Caterpillar Pontiac, Ward Burton; and #40 Coors Light Chevrolet, Sterling Marlin. It will be the first time the magazine has ever done an article on the technical side of NASCAR racing, and it will center around the science of racing, spending the most amount of space with the crew members. I hear the article is due out in next week’s edition(10-28-1999)
  • NASCAR and TV: from the TV Sports section of the USA Today by Rudy Martzke: Dick Ebersol, along with officials of other networks, were involved in meetings with NASCAR negotiators Tuesday. Meetings will be held Nov. 7-8, with rights fees likely tripling to about $300 million a year. This could be the start of a huge month for NBC, which could wind up with half the NASCAR package, renew Wimbledon and possibly announce the launch of its summer football league with Turner beginning in 2001. Fox wants to buy the entire package starting in 2001 in conjunction with FX. NASCAR, though, probably will have two packages. CBS/TNN are favored to gain rights to the first half over ABC/ESPN for possibly $160 million a year because ABC can’t televise as many races as CBS. NBC/Turner are favored for the second half of the year for about $140 million annually(USA Today)(10-28-1999)
  • Tyler Jet, Two Teams? #45 Tyler Jet team owner, Tim Beverly continues to talk with his current sponsor and several other potential ones as he decides what course of action his team will take in 2000. Beverly’s goal is to still field two Winston Cup teams. Beverly recently talked to AT&T/10-10-345 and two other potential sponsors and the team is deciding whether they’ll have two cars or one car(Winston Cup Scene Magazine)(10-28-1999)
  • Gordon BGN: Jeff Gordon will attempt one more Busch Grand National race in 1999. Gordon will drive the #24 Pepsi sponsored car at Phoenix on Saturday, November 6th(Tina’s Jeff Gordon Site)(10-28-1999)

    (10-27-1999)

  • Phoenix Facts: There has never been a driver to win from the pole position at Phoenix and Ricky Rudd holds the distinction for starting the farthest back in the field and winning. Rudd started in 29th position in 1995 before charging to victory(NOL)(10-27-1999)
  • Goodyear and NASCAR: The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company’s continuing partnership commitment with NASCAR remains firm and unaffected by the tire company’s announcement on Tuesday, Oct 26, that it was withdrawing from auto racing competition in the open wheel series. Contrary to the company’s increasing difficulty justifying the significant capital and resources that Goodyear has devoted to CART and the IRL, Stu Grant, general manager for global race tires, said there is no such question about being aligned with NASCAR. “This announcement will have no impact on our strong relationship with NASCAR,” he explained. “In fact, it may even serve to strengthen the relationship as Goodyear devotes additional resources to its NASCAR marketing and technology strategies. We are firmly committed to our successful supplier and marketing partnership with NASCAR. “The continued growth in fan base, track attendance and television ratings in NASCAR’s Winston Cup, Busch Series Grand National Division and Craftsman Truck series, represents a win-win situation for both parties.” Grant further noted that “our exits from Formula One, CART and IRL were business decisions that have absolutely no bearing on our relationship with the NASCAR organization. NASCAR continues to increase in popularity and is where virtually every motorsports supplier and consumer products company wants to be. We are steadily increasing our partnership with NASCAR, as evidenced by the recent introduction of the new Goodyear/NASCAR consumer tire and other marketing and promotional programs.”(Goodyear PR)(10-26-1999)
  • Gibbs Quits Funny Car: The entire Joe Gibbs(who owns the NASCAR teams of Bobby Labonte and Tony Stewart)-owned Interstate Batteries Funny Car crew has been notified that the team will cease to exist at the end of the 1999 season. Crew chief Wes Cerny told all crew personal and driver Tommy Johnson Jr. that the team will be dissolved at the conclusion of the NHRA Finals in Pomona. Insiders also speculated that the sudden move may be related to the funding of the Interstate Batteries-sponsored NASCAR entry but Interstate personnel on hand offered no comment. The MBNA Dragster team will continue into next season as planned with Cerny moving over to crew chief the operation. Cerny will be bringing his mechanics from the Funny Car half of the Gibbs’ operation and will retain only Mike Neff from the current Top Fuel team(NHRA Site)(10-27-1999)

    (10-26-1999)

  • Tire News UPDATE: Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. is expected today to announce it’s pulling out of the Indy Racing League(IRL) and Championship Auto Racing Teams(CART). Supposedly there will be a press release issued this morning from headquarters in Akron, Ohio, and it will state Goodyear is ending its 36-year run in Indy cars(SpeedNet) — UPDATE: in part from the Goodyear PR: As a result of the withdrawal, 18 engineering associates will transfer to other positions within Goodyear’s Akron Technical Center while approximately 60 manufacturing positions will be eliminated. Goodyear is presently involved in the largest expansion period in the company’s 101-year history and is focusing its efforts and resources on growing the company’s business activities on numerous fronts. As part of those expansion plans, Goodyear recently became the world’s largest tire manufacturer following a strategic alliance with Japan’s Sumitomo Rubber Industries and the company’s Dunlop tire brand. As a result of the integration, Goodyear’s annual sales are expected to increase by $2.5 billion in 2000, see the complete PR at TNN’s Motorsports Site, plus Goodyear will not supply tires to the ASA circuit as BF Goodrich will supply the tires and become the series title sponsor(SpeedVision)(10-26-1999)
  • Business: Action Performance Companies announced that its goracing.com inc. subsidiary acquired Fantasy Sports Enterprises Inc., which operates Fantasy Cup Auto Racing through its Web site at www.fantasycup.com. Fantasy Cup Auto Racing allows subscribers to assemble an eight-car Winston Cup “team” and compete for prizes based on actual race results. Television racing commentator and two-time NASCAR champion Ned Jarrett serves as the spokesperson for Fantasy Cup Auto Racing. For the year ended Sept. 30, 1999, Fantasy Sports Enterprises Inc. had revenue of approximately $2.2 million(Yahoo Business)(10-26-1999)
  • Shocks: The new shock combination, proposed for the superspeedways, was tested by Chevy drivers at Talladega last week and results were encouraging to NASCAR officials. Speeds at the 2.66 mile track were down almost 10 mph. With speeds again creeping up near the forbidden 200 mph range at Talladega, NASCAR again was hit with the importance of looking into the outrageously soft qualifying setups currently being used by Winston Cup teams. Setups now for qualifying at the two superspeedways have cars using shocks with so little rebound that the cars tend to bottom out during qualifying runs, leaving the vehicles on the very edge of control. NASCAR also has some concern about the roof-top wind flaps used to keep a car from becoming airborne at high speeds. There is a possibility that they may not function as designed when a car stays out of the airstream with soft shocks. Officials have said they may allow for different restrictor plates, allowing a little more speed, at Daytona and Talladega, should the new shocks be approved(Inside Motorsports)(10-26-1999)
  • Roush/Team Caliper: Roush Corporation announced that it acquired Team Caliber, L.L.C., a manufacturer and distributor of premium collectible die-cast products. Team Caliber will continue to focus its business on the premium, or high-end die-cast product. Team Caliber, L.L.C. will continue to operate as an independent subsidiary of Roush Corporation. Randy Duncan will remain as the principal operating officer(Team Caliper Site)(10-26-1999)
  • Wind Tunnel UPDATE: Reynard Motorsport Inc. announced today that it has joined forces with Roger Penske to construct a purpose-built, NASCAR-specific wind tunnel in Mooresville, N.C., for the development of vehicles in the Winston Cup, Busch Grand National and Craftsman Truck series. See full story at Racer Magazine(10-25-1999) — UPDATE: GM has been promising for two years to build a wind tunnel near Rick Hendrick’s shop in Concord for NASCAR teams’ use. Now, Chrysler’s Dodge operation is planning to build a wind tunnel in the heart of stock-car country, somewhere near Mooresville. Chrysler has no high-speed wind tunnel such as the Lockheed tunnel near Atlanta. The company is building one, but it won’t be ready until probably 2001 or 2002. Building a wind tunnel is a $20 million-plus proposition, and it’s unclear how long it might take Dodge to get such a NASCAR project completed(PitNow)(10-26-1999)
  • Closing in on 500: Jeff Burton’s win at Rockingham gave Ford its 498th all-time victory in the Cup series. Ford is close to clinching the manufacturers championship and holds a 15 point lead over second-place Chevrolet with only three races remaining. Ford has 213 points compared to 198 for Chevrolet and 178 for Pontiac. How is the championship calculated? The rules and other info on my Manufacturers Championship Standings page(10-26-1999)
  • PPI News: A Hickory-based NASCAR team is doubling the size of its headquarters and thinking about building a much larger facility as it boosts its presence on the racing scene. Precision Preparation Inc.(Cal Wells) is building a 32,000-square-foot facility across First Avenue Court S.E. from its two existing buildings, which have a total of 25,000 square feet. But even that’s not enough space, says Tim Wardlaw, facilities manager for Precision Preparation and they hope to expand their operation. The company fabricates car bodies for Winston Cup and Busch Series vehicles and assembles the cars. Driver Scott Pruett will take over Precision Preparation’s Tide-sponsored Winston Cup car next year, and driver Anthony Lazzaro will move to Busch Series. The shop’s 50 employees simply need more space to work, Wardlaw says. Real estate sources in the area say team owner Cal Wells is looking for a site for a premier NASCAR shop in Catawba County, something larger than DAJ Racing’s Conover shop, which is owned by Winston Cup driver Dale Jarrett. But Wardlaw is hesitant to talk about those plans. Until then, he’s preparing to occupy the building currently under construction. The company expects to move in around mid-November(Business Journal of Charlotte)(10-26-1999)

    (10-25-1999)

  • Atlanta Testing: I hear a few teams tested at Atlanta Motor Speedway Monday. #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr, #15-Derrick Cope, #93-Dave Blaney, #16-Kevin LePage and #97-Chad Little. Other teams scedhuled are #23-Jimmy Spencer, #25-Wally Dallenbach, and #01-Ron Hornaday. #41-TBA and #60-Geoffrey Bodine test on Tuesday. #11-Brett Bodine tests on Wednesday and Thurday. On Nov 1-2, #12-Jeremy Mayfield, #31-Mike Skinner, #94-Bill Elliott and #50-Ricky Craven test(AMS Site)(10-25-1999)
  • The Dyno: NASCAR brought its chassis dynamometer to the Rockingham track and tested six cars after Sunday’s race. The cars tested were the Pontiacs of Ward Burton(#22) and Bobby Labonte(#18), the Fords of Jeff Burton(#99), Dale Jarrett(#88) and Rusty Wallace(#2), and Sterling Marlin’s Chevrolet(#40)(That’s Racin’)(10-25-1999)
  • Penske News: Roger Penske said yesterday he has no plans for a third Winston Cup team and he doesn’t plan to switch from Ford to Chrysler — at least not any time soon(PitNow)(10-25-1999)
  • Jarrett in Good Shape: If Dale Jarrett finishes 43rd at Phoenix and Bobby Labonte won and led the most laps, Jarrett would still lead by 95 points(That’s Racin’) and With three races (Homestead, Phoenix, Atlanta) remaining on the 1999 schedule Jarrett maintained his 246-point lead, and now only needs to finish 19th or better in each of the events to win the championship. If the #88 car were to lead one of those races, that number falls to 20th(Racer Magazine) AND Jarrett can clinch at Phoenix, but it’s gonna be tough. He’ll need to come out of there with a 371 point lead. If DJ wins the race (and leads the most laps), Mark runs 7th or worse, and Bobby runs 35th or worse….Jarrett clinches(StockCarFans Newsletter)(10-25-1999)
  • Martin Crew Member: Jon Davis, the catch can man on Martin’s pit crew, was injured Sunday on pit road, the #12 Ford ran over the back of his right heel on his foot after a pitstop. Davis was on crutches after the race, but was otherwise fine. He plans to see a specialist upon his return home(NOL)(10-25-1999)

(10-24-1999)

  • Kenny Wallace, what happened? to #55-Kenny Wallace during first round qualifying? the starter in the engine of his Chevy lock up and prevent him from posting a first-round speed(Gaston Gazette)(10-24-1999)
  • Martin News: Mark Martin, all-time leading winner i Busch Series, took a rare few minutes of free time to reflect on his career in NASCAR racing and to reveal that he’ll back away from Busch over the next year(Racer Magazine)(10-24-1999)
  • Mast News: Rick Mast still is considering his options for next season and hasn’t signed with a team yet(Times-Dispatch)(10-24-1999)

    (10-23-1999)

  • Pit Crews UPDATE 2 Winner and TV: haven’t heard much about it but the Pit Crew Competition(the unsung heroes of the sport) is supposed to be held at North Carolina Speedway this Saturday after 2nd round qualifying is over, approximately 11am/et. TNN usually shows it a few weeks later(10-19-1999) — UPDATE: The 1999 Union 76/Rockingham World Pit Crew Competition, which began in 1967, takes place Saturday, October 23 at 11:00am/et. This event is the only pit crew competition sanctioned by NASCAR. Entries are open to any NASCAR Winston Cup team. In 1998, the #31 Lowe’s Chevrolet driven by Mike Skinner took home the championship trophy and the title of being ‘the best in the world’ with a timed pit stop of 20.322 seconds. Team manager David Smith coordinates the practice of the team pit stops and oversees the key team members that compete for this coveted honor(NCS Site) TNN will tape the NASCAR Winston Cup Pit Crew Competition this Saturday in Rockingham. The show will telecast at the following times: Sunday, Nov. 28 (5:00-6:00pm et/pt) and Sunday, Dec. 5 (5:00-6:00pm, et/pt)(10-20-1999) — UPDATE 2: The #18 Joe Gibbs Team won the 33rd annual Union 76 Rockingham World Championship Pit Crew Competition Saturday. They broke the #24’s record of 19.363 with a 19.166. The winning crew members, in addition to Makar (who no longer goes over the wall), were: Jeff Chandler, front changer; Todd Meredith, front carrier; Barry Cook, rear changer; Scott Hewitt, rear carrier; Jason Lee, jackman; Peter Jellen, gas man; and Derek Jones, catch can. See full story at the Racer Magazine site(10-23-1999)
  • Taurus OK’d: Ford’s revised Taurus model, which differs in a few minor ways from the present Ford entry, has received approval from NASCAR, and teams can begin to construct cars for the 2000 season. Most of the changes will not be noticeable, with some flattening of the back glass and deck and a somewhat more streamlined nose(Racer Magazine)(10-23-1999)
  • Park to BGN? UPDATE 4: hearing Ted Christopher, driver of the Ted Marsh #13 Whelen Chevy will leave the team for a 2000 full time BGN ride in 2000. Supposedly Steve Park will drive the the #13 in some short track events next year(9-7-1999) — UPDATE hearing Steve Park will drive the #13 Whelen Chevy at Homestead, replacing Ted Christopher. Park is also rumored to be driving the #13 in a limited schedule in 2000 — UPDATE 2: I hear that Steve Park will announce Saturday a Busch deal with Whelen as the sponsor…about 15 races but schedule wont be known until NASCAR announces BGN schedule(10-20-1999) — UPDATE 3: I hear the car will be #84 for Park(10-22-1999) — UPDATE 4: In a press conference Saturday, Steve Park announced he will run 15 BGN races in 2000 for Ted Marsh in the Whelen Engineering Chevy. The team will run its first race in Nov in the hotwheels.com 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway(NOL)(10-23-1999)
  • Moore Gone: Stacy Compton, who has only one more race to run in the Craftsman Truck Series in 1999, will drive the #9 Cartoon Network/Mark Melling-owned Ford in the season’s final four races. The team’s crew chief, Newt Moore, left earlier this week, so Compton’s truck crew chief, Kevin Cram, will move as well(SpeedNet)(10-23-1999)
  • Chrysler/Wood Bros? On the Chrysler front? That’s a possibility for the Wood Brothers(#21 CITGO Ford), according to sources close to the Jack Roush operation, which would provide Dodge engines for such an effort(PitNow)(10-23-1999)
  • Martin Surgery: Mark Martin said Friday that the back surgery he has scheduled for Nov. 22, the day after the Winston Cup season ends at Atlanta Motor Speedway, will likely keep him from testing before the 2000 season. Martin said his doctors have told him to expect an 8- to 10-week recovery period(That’s Racin’)(10-23-1999)
  • Shock Rules: Chevy drivers were nearly 10 mph slower in qualifying setup during this week’s NASCAR shock tests, according to Chevy crew chiefs. NASCAR may go to a slightly larger restrictor plate for the Daytona 500 if its planned shock rules go through. Current plate holes are 29/32nds of an inch in diameter. If the plans don’t go through, then NASCAR could go to an even smaller plate. NASCAR officials told teams at Talladega they will probably order the same “stock” shocks for the Daytona 500 as for Daytona qualifying(PitNow)(10-23-1999)

    (10-22-1999)

  • #58 news UPDATE: SBIII Motorsports has scheduled a press conference for Friday, 12:30pm/et at the Media Center at the North Carolina Speedway(Rockingham)(SBIII PR). I am hearing it’ll be a sponsorship announcement(no idea who) and even possibly a 2nd car to run at one or more of the remaining Cup races with Rich Bickle as the driver(10-20-1999) — UPDATE: Hut Stricklin has agreed to a three-year contract to dive the #58 Fords owned by SBIII Motorsports. The team has also picked up a primary sponsor, Motorsports Safety Technologies, through the 2003 season(That’s Racin’)(10-22-1999)
  • Musgrave News: Ted Musgrave has been exploring his options since discovering he would not be returning to the #75 Butch Mock Motorsports team next season. One possible scenario has Musgrave working as a driver/consultant for Cal Wells’ new operation. A part time driving deal with testing. Musgrave said he had also been approached by Robert Yates, who “asked me about my situation last week,” Musgrave said. “It seems a lot of the bigger teams are going to R&D situations, especially with Dodge coming in. There will be a number of opportunities for test drivers.”(SpeedVision)(10-22-1999)
  • #2 Associate: The Lawman Armor Corporation announced a partnership with Rusty Wallace to endorse Unbrakeable Autolock, the company’s latest breakthrough anti-theft device. The Lawman Armor Corporation and Wallace will officially announce their partnership at a news conference during the APAA ’99 Show at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas. The conference is slated for Wednesday, Nov. 3, from 1 – 1:30pm/pt in room 103 of the Sands Expo Center. Lunch will be provided. In addition, Wallace will be signing autographs from 2:30 – 5:00pm/pm at the Lawman Armor Corporation booth located in the Sands Convention Center, booth #8949(NOL)(10-22-1999)
  • Letter of apology from Todd Parrott(SpeedNet)(10-22-1999)
  • ISM Returns? ISM Holding Corporation announced that it has entered into an agreement with Lycos, Inc., an Internet portal and online community. The agreement gives Lycos co-title sponsorships of two of ISM’s Indy Racing teams and an associate sponsorship of a NASCAR Winston Cup entry for the next three seasons beginning in 2000. The sponsorship agreement represents a major brand building and promotional opportunity for Lycos in the motor sports arena and provides online and offline exposure for both ISM Racing and Lycos through significant promotional and cross-marketing opportunities. Lycos will also receive television commercials during the broadcasts of each race as well as in-car camera exposure(PRNewswire/AutoChannel) NOTE: ISM ran the #35 Tabasco Team in Cup during the first half of the 1998 season(10-22-1999)
  • Gerhart 2000 plans: Bobby Gerhart, who attempted to make the Cup race at Talladega last week in the #89 Chevy, plans to attempt seven to eight Cup races in 2000(Philadelphia Daily News)(10-22-1999)

    (10-21-1999)

  • Rudd/Yates/Engine: Ricky Rudd won’t have a Robert Yates-built engine in his #10 Tide Ford this weekend at Rockingham. He may have a Yates engine at Phoenix(That’s Racin’)(10-21-1999)
  • Parrott Fined: NASCAR announced #88 RYR Ford crew chief, Todd Parrott, has been fined $5,000 for use of improper language. The fine is the result of comments made during the broadcast of the Winston 500 at Talladega last week(Infobeat/AP)(10-21-1999)
  • Irvan to present award: On October 22,1999 Ernie Irvan will be given the honor of presenting the ARETA Award to Cancer Survivor and Tour de France cycling champion Lance Armstrong. In a Gala ceremony to be held at Navy Pier Grand Ballroom in Chicago, Ernie and his wife Kim will participated in the star studded night. Ernie was the recipient of the award several years ago. The ARETE awards are recognized as the most inspirational night in sports. Arete (Ah-ree-tee) is what the ancient Greeks termed as the embodiment of excellence and valor. The noble virtues of dedication and perseverance. It honors men and women who know no limits, because they refuse to accept limitations and who will let no obstacle stand dreams. The evening will also centered around Hall of Fame Chicago bears running back Walter Payton who’s Career will be honored with ARETE life Award. The Ceremony will be aired on ESPN on Wednesday Nov 10th at 8:00-9:30pm/et(Irvanfan Club Site)(10-21-1999)
  • Oordt buys Track: #75 Cup and #40 BGN owner, Darwin Oordt purchased Highland Rim Speedway to its racing holdings, which include Twin Fountains Raceway Park in Shelbyville, NC (Tennessean)(10-21-1999)
  • SpeedVision News: Speedvision and RACER Magazine have entered into a long-term agreement in which RACER will be the provider of auto racing news for speedvision.com. See full story at the Racer Magazine Site(10-21-1999)
  • Homestead Testing: #1 Pennzoil Chevy driver Steve Park teamed up with a new BGN team, while former CTS regular Boris Said tested the #14 Irvan-Simo Ford at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Wednesday. Said plans to run in the Pennzoil 400 presented by Kmart. Park joined Ron Hornaday and Steve Grissom in testing for the Nov. 13 HotWheels.com 300 at Miami, the 1999 NASCAR Busch Series finale. Park plans to do double-duty in Miami, and will also drive a Chevrolet owned by Ted Marsh. Steve Grissom concluded his first test in the #11 Rayovac Ford, which is co-owned by Winston Cup Series points leader Dale Jarrett and Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre(Homestead-Miami Speedway)(10-21-1999)

    (10-20-1999)

  • #41 Sponsor? hearing Exxon may be the sponsor for the #41 Larry Hedrick Chevy in 2000, no word on a driver(10-20-1999)
  • Petty Dodge? Gibbs No UPDATE: Insiders say that Richard Petty will return to Chrysler, and he spent a lot of time talking with Dodge executives Saturday in Talladega. Pontiac’s Fred Simmons says he’s not sure just what Petty may do for the 2001 season, but Petty Enterprises will run Pontiacs again in 2000. Simmons says Joe Gibbs’ two-car team is firmly in the GM camp, despite overtures from Chrysler but Gibbs’ is committed to General Motors products(PitNow)(10-19-1999) — UPDATE: but
  • Petty to Dodge? rumor has it that a three car Petty Cup effort with Dodge will be announced at the SEMA show in Las Vegas(not Phoenix)(10-20-1999)
  • Schrader and Truck: Ken Schrader will take over driving duties of the #52 Ken Schrader Racing/Oakwood Homes Chevy the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series makes their final stop of the season at the California Speedway for the NAPA Auto Parts 200 on October 30, 1999(Racin’ Network)(10-20-1999)
  • Not NASCAR but TMS UPDATE: Eleven people were injured yesterday in a pit-road accident minutes before the end of the final practice session for the Mall.com 500 Pep Boys Indy Racing League race at Texas Motor Speedway. The accident occurred when a car driven by Swedish rookie Niclas Jonsson spun into the pitted car of driver Tyce Carlson as Carlson’s crew was working on it. Jonsson withdrew from the race, Carlson said he would like to be ready to race Sunday(full story at the Star-Telegram)(10-17-1999) — UPDATE: IRL crew member Tracy NASH underwent surgery today to begin reconstructing his left leg. During the accident his left calf muscle was removed and he ended up under the car. He is at Methodist Hospital, I-65 at 21st Street, Indianapolis, IN 46206, the same hospital driver Sam Schmidt is(10-20-1999)
  • Roush-Dodge? Word among Dodge’s dealer advertising and marketing community is that Jack Roush will field an Intrepid for Jeff Burton(Autoweek Magazine), also mentions it in a PitNow story(10-20-1999)
  • #58 news: SBIII Motorsports has scheduled a press conference for Friday, 12:30pm/et at the Media Center at the North Carolina Speedway(Rockingham)(SBIII PR). I am hearing it’ll be a sponsorship announcement(no idea who) and even possibly a 2nd car to run at one or more of the remaining Cup races with Rich Bickle as the driver(10-20-1999)
  • Evernhman Address: been getting many questions from folks wanting to send resumes to Ray Evernham’s new Dodge team. I do not have an address for hiss team, from my understanding is that he is still working out of the GEM BGN shop. The address can be found on mt Team Addresses page(10-20-1999)
  • #90 Car: Junie Donlavey will have Ed Berrier in his #90 Ford for the Rockingham weekend. Donlavey also plans to run with Nestle sponsorship at Miami and Atlanta. No driver has been named for those races(Inside Motorsports)(10-20-1999)
  • 1999 Sweeps: Dale Earnhardt becomes the third driver of 1999 to sweep both races at a track with his dual wins at Talladega. Bobby Labonte did it at Pocono, Jeff Burton at Darlington(10-20-1999)
  • 91 Info: #91 team owner, Joe Falk was also interviewed on a radio show (Race Talk, WGH/1310am). Falk mentioned that they were trying to put together a BGN team with Tim Fedewa as the driver. Like the Cup team, sponsorship would be a key issue as to whether or not the Busch deal goes anywhere. Falk also mentioned the possibility of switching over to Dodge for 2001 but said he hasn’t spoken with Dodge officials yet, but indicated the “door was open”(Victory Lane Online)(10-20-1999)
  • Benson News? UPDATE: I hear Johnny Benson will announce his plans for 2000 at the Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn 400 this weekend at Rockingham — UPDATE: Sources tell me that Benson has no announcement planned for this weekend and he continues to explore every possible option(10-19-1999)
  • Manufacturers: Ford leads the manufacturer standings with 12 victories and 204 points. Chevrolet also has 12 victories but trails Ford in the standings with 194 points. Pontiac remains in third place with six wins and 172 points. See the rules and race by race recaps and standings at my Manufacturers Championship Standings Page(10-19-1999)
  • Martinsville Track Worker News: Randy Hall, who was injured at Martinsville two weeks ago when he fell off a safety truck is doing much better, but he is still in the Paul Sticht Rehabilitation Center in the Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem where he was moved last week. Hall is expected to remain there two more weeks and Doctors believe he will eventually fully recover(Martinsville Speedway Newsletter)(10-19-1999)

    (10-19-1999)

  • Gordon Book: A new racing book titled, Jeff Gordon: An Unauthorized Biography of the Three-Time Winston Cup Champion is supposed to hit the bookstores sometime in the next few weeks. Written by Gary L. Thomas, the book promises to “uncover the story behind this seemingly humble man and his incredible racing talent. It also looks at the key races that have formed his amazing career, his successful racing strategies, and the behind-the-scenes workings of the sport of racing.” The book will also contain “rare photos” and “firsthand interviews with Jeff’s mother and stepfather, as well as many other friends and relatives.”(Tennessean) Looks like it’s out, have it listed on my Racing Bookstore page(10-19-1999)
  • Bliss Signs Up: Eel River Racing owner Jack Birmingham announced today that he has hired NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver Mike Bliss to pilot the team’s Pontiacs beginning with the 2000 season. Bliss, who ranks in the top-five in virtually every career statistical category in the truck series, will also attempt to qualify the State Fair Brand Corn Dogs Pontiac for Sunday’s Pop Secret 400 at North Carolina Speedway. He’s also scheduled to compete for the team at Phoenix and Homestead. Bliss is reuniting with Barry Dodson, who served as his crew chief for six of his seven career victories on the truck circuit. Dodson is crew chief and a part owner of the Eel River Racing team. Birmingham purchased the team on July 28. His hiring of Bliss is yet another step in the development of his plans to forge a competitive team in NASCAR’s top series. Birmingham believes the hiring of Bliss will make his team even more attractive in his quest to find a new primary sponsor(Hoagland Communications)(10-19-1999)
  • #91 Driver: Team owner Joe Falk announced today Rich Bickle will drive the #91 LJ Racing Chevy for the Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn 400 at North Carolina Speedway. Veteran Mike Hillman will continue to serve as the crew chief. Sponsorship opportunities are still available for the Rockingham event and 2000. Contact Toni Neal at 704-663-0091 for more information(LJ Racing)(10-19-1999)
  • Compton to Cup? UPDATE 3: Heard it was reported on the LTN Hour, a Wisconsin NASCAR radio show, that Stacy Compton is under consideration to take the #9 Melling Ford. Present driver, Jerry Nadeau, is leaving to go to the #25 Hendrick team(8-11-1999) — UPDATE: TNN’s Raceday reports that Compton turned down the offer(8-18-1999) — UPDATE2: I hear that no offers have been made and the Steve Grissom and Compton are the two drivers the team likes at the moment. The team is getting the sponsorship side taken care of first then will hire a 2000 driver(8-19-1999) — UPDATE 3: #86 CTS driver Stacy Compton will drive the #9 Cartoon Network Ford Taurus for the rest of the Cup season. According to sources close to the situation, Compton has the ride for this week’s Pop-Secret Microwave Popcorn 400 at North Carolina Speedway as well as the races at Phoenix, Homestead and Atlanta. And, should sponsorship be found to replace the Cartoon Network, Compton has an excellent chance of remaining in the car for the 2000 season. Compton replaces Rich Bickle, who had driven the car for the past several races(TNN Motorsports Site). Compton has also been rumored to be part of a the Dodge teams when they go to Cup in 2001(10-19-1999)
  • Sharp Renews with the IRL: Kelley Racing extended the contract of driver Scott Sharp through the 2001 Pep Boys Indy Racing League season, team officials announced today. Delphi Automotive Systems has extended its primary sponsorship of Kelley Racing driver Scott Sharp and his #8 Dallara/Aurora/Goodyear entry through the 2001 Pep Boys Indy Racing League season, Delphi and Kelley Racing officials announced today. Delphi has been the primary sponsor of Sharp and Kelley Racing since 1998(IRL Site) So Sharp will NOT be driving for AJ Foyt as rumored(10-19-1999)
  • 2000 Chevy Test UPDATE: Most Chevy teams are expected to test the 2000 Monte Carlo on Monday and Tuesday at Talladega. Sterling Marlin will drive for Team Sabco. Hendrick Motorsports will use Jeff Gordon, Terry Labonte and Jerry Nadeau. Kenny Wallace will drive for Andy Petree. Dale Earnhardt and Dave Marcis also will test, among others(Roanoke Times)(10-17-1999) — UPDATE: The new 2000 Chevy Monte Carlo was tested at Talladega on Monday. Driver/Teams on hand were Sterling Marlin, who represented Team SABCO. Gordon, Labonte and 2000 teammate Jerry Nadeau for Hendrick Motorsports. Earnhardt was joined by Richard Childress Racing teammate Mike Skinner, while Earnhardt’s own driver Steve Park was also on hand along with his 2000 teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. Among others who took part were Bobby Hamilton for Morgan-McClure, Kenny Wallace for Andy Petree, Geoffrey Bodine for Joe Bessey/PowerTeam and Andy Hillenburg, who drove Larry Hedrick’s Chevrolet. The test continues on Tuesday. No speeds were released(NOL) hearing Dale Earnhardt Jr went just above 194mph(10-19-1999)
  • Earnhardt/Childress: Dale Earnhardt and Richard Childress said once again after Sunday’s victory in the Winston 500 that they are close to signing an extension of their contract that now runs through the end of the 2000 season. Childress said he and Earnhardt want to retire together. Earnhardt said he wishes that Childress wouldn’t even talk about retirement. Nor, for that matter, does he want to hear it from anybody else(That’s Racin’)(10-19-1999)

    (10-18-1999)

  • Parrott Apologizes: #88 crew chief, Todd Parrott, who was on a live microphone during ESPN’s spotlight segments, issued an apology for a bad word he said while talking to his crew(RPM2Nite)(10-18-1999)
  • Jarretts Magic Number: If Dale Jarrett can finish thirteenth or better in the last four Cup races, he clinches the Winston Cup championship. Jarrett would score enough points that no one could catch him(Henry/StockcarFans Newsletter)(10-18-1999)
  • No Bull Five returns: Cliff Pennell, president of R.J. Reynolds’ Sports Marketing Enterprises(SME) announced during Sunday’s driver/crew chief meeting that SME would continue its No Bull 5 driver bonus program next season. The program allows five eligible drivers – each matched with a fan – to win a $1 million bonus should they win at five different tracks during the season. This season, those races were the Daytona 500, Las Vegas 400, Coca-Cola 600, Southern 500 and Sunday’s Winston 500. There will likely be at least one change to the five races used in the program next season, sources said. Those likely to stay are the races at Daytona, Las Vegas, Charlotte and Talladega. The race at Darlington is the most likely to be swapped out. If it is, look for a track a mile in length or less to be added in its place. An official announcement of the new program is expected at the season finale at Atlanta(That’s Racin’) Whatever the new program will be, the top five finishers in Sunday’s race will be eligible for it. The five drivers are: Dale Earnhardt, Dale Jarrett, Ricky Rudd, Ward Burton and Kenny Wallace(10-18-1999)
  • Still no DNFs: #98-Rick Mast is still the only Winston Cup driver to make all the races and no have a single DNF(Did not finish), see my DNF page for the season rundown(10-18-1999)
  • Security Problems? Security was breached by someone who cut a hole in the chain-link fence surrounding the Cup haulers at Talladega and who broke into several trailers, including those of Felix Sabates, Robert Yates and Cale Yarborough. Other rigs were tampered with but not broken into. Garage security is usually provided by police dogs. There was no immediate explanation from NASCAR for the security breach or what damage might have been done(PitNow)(10-18-1999)
  • Richert Gone: Doug Richert, crew chief most of this season for Kenny Irwin in Robert Yates’ #28 Texaco/Havoline Ford, left the team after Sunday’s race at Talladega to take up his new duties as crew chief for Cal Wells’ start-up Winston Cup operation(#32 Tide Ford). Raymond Fox, Yates’ long-time right-hand man, will run the show for the rest of the season. The Cup team plans to begin testing with Pruett in three weeks at Darlington. Meanwhile, National Speed Sport News reports that Wells has been sued by long-time CART partner Frank Arciero over ownership of Cristiano da Matta’s contract(Racer Magazine)(10-18-1999)
  • 2000 Taurus: Winston Cup director Gary Nelson said Sunday NASCAR was “very close” to approving the templates for the 2000 Ford Taurus. NASCAR met with Ford officials at Charlotte last weekend to go over the latest modifications. Ford first presented the changes, deemed by the manufacturer as simply “style changes,” in August when it unveiled the car at the RCA Dome in Indianapolis. Once the templates are approved, teams can begin building cars for next season(That’s Racin’)(10-18-1999)
  • Restrictor Plate Points: the top ten drivers for the four race restrictor plate season are: 1) #3-Earnhardt,710; 2) #88-Jarrett Dale,587; 3) #18-Labonte Bobby,569; 4) #20-Stewart Tony,544; 5) #31-Skinner Mike,519; 6) #33-Schrader Ken,501; 7) #99-Burton Jeff,495; 8) #28-Irwin Kenny,478; 9) #10-Rudd Ricky,478; 10) #6-Martin Mark,470(Henry/StockcarFans Newsletter)(10-18-1999)
  • Evernham Team: Ray Evernham has already picked out his first engine builder for his new Dodge Cup team, but there is no indication yet who it might be. Randy Dorton, head engine builder at Hendrick Motorsports, made clear it would not be him. Chrysler has no U.S. wind tunnel, but Gary Romberg, Chrysler’s head of aerodynamics, is heading an effort to build a wind tunnel by 2001 or 2002. That will be too late to help in the development of new NASCAR Intrepid, so Evernham will have to use the Lockheed tunnel in Marietta, Ga., and a 40-percent scale model wind tunnel run by Reynard in Indianapolis(PitNow)(10-18-1999)
  • NASCAR Jackets: As NASCAR tries to dispel its image as an all-white sport limited to rural areas, an ironic twist has seen racing team jackets become a hot fashion item in — of all places — inner-city neighborhoods of major urban markets. The trend is not only a boon for NASCAR and its race teams but also for sponsors who typically collect one-third of the royalties generated by the sale of licensed products tied to their race teams(Atlanta Business Chronicle)(10-18-1999)
  • Not NASCAR but….UPDATE: there are many NASCAR ties: Seven drivers were transported to Carraway Methodist Medical Center and a total of 15 were treated at the Infield Care Center following crashes in the ARCA race at Talladega on Saturday. Tim Steele was kept overnight for observation after suffering a mild concussion(not something he needs with his history). Cal Wells BGN driver Anthony Lazarro was transported by helicopter with a possible spine fracture. Mark Stahl was transported with a possible fractured shoulder blade, a mild concussion and bruised ankle; Norm Benning with a badly bruised ankle; Mike Ciochetti with a possible shoulder fracture; Doug Reid with a right shoulder injury; and Ed Kennedy with a possible right shoulder fracture. Lazarro was trying to earn experience on the superspeedway before entering the BGN full time in the Cal Wells car next season. He had never run on a track of that size in a stock car, but crew chief Joe Garone was impressed with Lazarro’s run. He was in the top 10 when the crash occurred(Times-Dispatch)(10-17-1999) — UPDATE: One driver injured in Saturday’s Winn-Dixie 300 Automobile Racing Club of America series race remained in the Carraway Methodist Hospital in Birmingham, Ala., late Sunday. Five other drivers hurt were treated and released Saturday. Tim Steele, who suffered a mild concussion in an early-race accident, was released Sunday morning. Anthony Lazzaro, who will drive in the BGN next season for Cal Wells’ Precision Preparation Inc., suffered a fractured vertabrae. Lazzaro was fitted with a back brace and should be discharged Monday morning. He plans to go to Indianapolis on Tuesday to visit an orthopedic surgeon for further evaluation(That’s Racin’), The injury will keep Lazzaro out of this week’s Busch race at Rockingham(PitNow)(10-18-1999)
  • HRT: Along with his Dallas-based entrepreneurial cousin, Rudy Rodriguez, the Miami developer builds more than bricks and mortar. Vasquez, Rodriguez and established NASCAR(#41 Cup and BGN) team owner North Carolina’s Larry Hedrick, formed Miami-based HRT Motorsports. The HRT stands for Hispanic Racing Team. The group plans to spend $100,000 to enter a car, driven by veteran driver David Green, in the BGN race at Homestead Nov. 13. The plan is to sign on sponsors with brands familiar to Hispanics and fly their decals on the team cars. But the team, several dozen drivers and mechanics, also wants to attract mainstream sponsors, looking to reach burgeoning Hispanic markets. Miami coffee maker Cafe Bustelo — a company with strong ties to the Cuban-American community — has already signed on as an HRT sponsor. It will create a concession to sell Cuban coffee at the November race. Royal Caribbean International Cruises in Miami also has signed on for HRT’s first race(South Florida Business Journal)(10-18-1999)
  • Tough Day for the crew: Jimmy Spencer ran over the foot of Bill Elliott’s front tire changer, Gordy Arbitter, while making a pit stop. In a separate incident, Jeff Burton had brake problems and hit his front tire carrier, Mike Brill, sending the crewman flying. Despite the setback, Brill was able to get back on his feet, grab the tire, then rush to the car to complete the stop. Neither pit crew member was seriously hurt(Orlando Sentinel(10-18-1999)

(10-17-1999)

  • Sad News: ESPN Announcer Bob Jenkins will be absent from today’s ESPN NASCAR Cup telecast as his Mother passed away over the weekend and he left Talladega to be with his family, thoughts and condolences go out to his family(NASCAR2Day) Jerry Punch filled in a did a nice job(as usual)(10-17-1999)
  • Brett Bodine sale close UPDATE: Brett Bodine is close to selling his #11 Cup team, all terms are agreed upon, just the paper work to do(RPM2Nite). Rumor has it that the new owner is Winston West owner Richard Hilton and will bring along Ralphs/Kroger as a sponsor(10-15-1999) — UPDATE: should be announced at Phoenix(NASCAR2Day)(10-17-1999)
  • Pemberton signs: #2 driver, Rusty Wallace said Saturday that crew chief Robin Pemberton has a new deal with the team. Pemberton, whose contract expired after this season, signed a three-year deal Thursday(Roanoke Times)(10-17-1999)
  • Foyt-Boat-Cup? Billy Boat still doesn’t have a contract to drive for A.J. Foyt next season, and the way Foyt addressed the subject Tuesday in a conference call, it doesn’t sound promising. When Foyt was asked about Boat and teammate Kenny Brack’s status, he said: “Both drivers’ contracts are up (after Sunday’s race at Texas Motor Speedway). They’re free agents. If they want to go somewhere, they’re more than welcome.” As for rumors that Boat may be in line for the NASCAR Winston Cup ride being created next season by Foyt, the car owner was noncommittal(in part from SpeedNet)(10-17-1999)
  • Bliss News: Mike Bliss said he is looking at two possible Cup rides, including the #30 Jimmy Dean Pontiac Grand Prix he drove to a 32nd-place finish at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway on Oct. 3. Bliss also said he has had informal conversations with A.J. Foyt about the open seat with his new Winston Cup team(Star Telegeam)(10-17-1999)
  • More UPDATEs: R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company has decided that its Winston brand’s NASCAR sponsorship cannot continue to include the NASCAR Winston Racing Series, the weekly short-track racing program that it has been primary sponsor of for 26 years, after the conclusion of the 1999 season(NOL) I am hearing Exide Batteries may step in as the sponsor(10-12-1999) — UPDATE: NASCAR is talking with five companies about sponsorship of the Winston Racing series in the future. One of those companies is Exide, which decided to cease sponsoring the Richmond fall Winston Cup race after this season. The sponsorship includes a $1.4 million championship fund(Times-Dispatch)(10-13-1999) — UPDATE 2: Exide representatives said the company is not currently planning to take over sponsorship of the former Winston Racing Series, but that it would consider it if NASCAR offered. The company is currently planning to sponsor a different NASCAR short track series(Times-Dispatch)…BUT… I am hearing Exide Corporation has entered into an agreement with NASCAR to sponsor the Exide ShorTrack Series next year, the second tier of the NASCAR Weekly Racing Series (NWRS), the premier short track racing series in the nation. The Exide ShorTrack Series, which is a part of the NWRS, competes at nearly 100 short tracks, both dirt and asphalt, on a weekly basis, nationwide, reaching 39 states, including Alaska. The Exide ShorTrack Series has no regulation playing field. The tracks will range in size from the tight .250-mile Riverhead Raceway on Eastern Long Island, NY, to the spacious .626-mile LaCrosse (WI) Fairgrounds Speedway. There are 10 regions throughout the country that will feature drivers competing for track, regional and national honors and recognition. With more than $1.423 million in posted point fund awards available in the first tier, drivers in the second tier will now be vying for the Exide ShorTrack Series national championship(10-17-1999)
  • Rudd/Yates UPDATE: Ricky Rudd will have a Yates engine in the #10 Tide Ford for today’s race at Talladega, but it won’t be the same one with which he qualified. Yates has given Rudd a new motor to use Sunday(That’s Racin’) — UPDATE: Rudd got his best finish of 1999 at Talladega……a third(10-17-1999)

    (10-16-1999)

  • NASCAR Sues: NASCAR has sued a Chicago man claiming that he is infringing on their trademark by operating an Internet site called nascarstore. NASCAR, which filed the suit on Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Chicago, says in the suit that Robert Freeman of Chicago is misleading people who visit the site into believing that it’s owned and operated by the stock-car racing association. It claimed the defendant is making money on their name(Full story at: Tennessean)(10-16-1999)
  • Musgrave R&D? Ted Musgrave, who does not have a ride for next season, is considering an offer to drive a research and development car for Wells in test sessions and selected Winston Cup races. Musgrave would also work with Scott Pruett and Anthony Lazzaro, who will drive for Wells’ Grand National team, as they adapt to driving stock cars. Musgrave will be out of the #75 Fords at season’s end. Wally Dallenbach. Musgrave said he has not talked with A.J. Foyt about possibly driving for Foyt’s new team next year(That’s Racin’)(10-16-1999)
  • Rudd sells? Hearing Ricky Rudd has a buyer for his team/equipment(10-12-1999) — UPDATE: Ricky Rudd said that he has an auction scheduled for near Thanksgiving to sell his equipment if he doesn’t have a buyer by then. Rudd said he has a few buyers interested, including one who would like to have Rudd have some percentage of ownership in the team(Roanoke Times)(10-16-1999)
  • Cheever News UPDATE 2: IRL owner-driver Eddie Cheever, winner of the 1998 Indianapolis 500, also was in the Winston Cup garage yesterday. He could make an announcement in the next couple of weeks about starting his own (Cup or BGN) team(Times-Dispatch) — UPDATE: TNN’s Raceday reports that Cheever said to expect an announcement soon concerning a Cup team he will start(10-10-1999) — UPDATE 2: Cheever said Friday at Texas Motor Speedway that he is seeking a five-race program in 2000 with a Cup team. Cheever was in Texas preparing for Sunday’s Mall.com 500, the IRL season finale. Cheever has been interested in seeing his company, Team Cheever, enter the Cup Series for more than a year, but once the “window of opportunity closed on pulling together a top package for 2000,” Cheever shifted his focus. Cheever had had discussions with “a number of Cup team owners” about possibly doing a limited schedule next season(NOLAND Cheever is seeking a ride with a top multi-car Winston Cup team that could provide a strong regional marketing program for a sponsor, possibly The Children’s Beverage Group, which sponsors his IRL car(Racer Mag Site)(10-16-1999)
  • TV Stuff: Indications are that NASCAR is close to reaching initial agreements on its unified broadcast package with a major network or networks. But NASCAR officials remain very guarded about what might be coming down the pipe, and when. Asked about reports that the deal could be going to final in the next two or three weeks, NASCAR vice president Mike Helton admitted that negotiations were nearing time for serious talk with broadcast partners, but would say little more(Racer Mag Site)(10-16-1999)
  • Shocked UPDATE: NASCAR’S Proposed new Daytona-Talladega shock rules, as expected, aren’t setting well with the tour’s top shock specialists. Winston Cup teams don’t even know the specifics of what NASCAR has planned, and Chevy teams will be at Talladega for three days after next weekend’s DieHard 500. Over the past few years, teams have used trick shocks to lower their cars to improve aerodynamics for qualifying, but the downside is a harsh ride on a chassis that digs into the pavement, leaving a trail of sparks. The proposed rule would require a standard shock to be used by each team for qualifying next season at Daytona and Talladega. NASCAR plans to ask Chevrolet teams to test some of the new shocks at Talladega next week during three days of testing after Sunday’s DieHard 500(PitNow)(10-11-1999) — UPDATE:NASCAR very likely will outlaw the bone-jarring shock-and-spring packages teams have used in qualifying at the restrictor-plate tracks the past couple of years. Other concerns are driver safety and costs to the teams. Shocks with hand-made internal parts are designed to compress quickly (against very soft springs) and rebound almost not at all, allowing the cars’ bodies virtually to sit on the frame and drag the ground during time trials at Daytona and Talladega. The idea is to get the car body as low in the airstream as possible in order to gain speed. The solution, NASCAR vice president Kevin Triplett said, will be to specify minimum spring rates (350 to 400 pounds) and to hand out a spec shock for qualifying, in the manner of the restrictor plates used on the engine intake manifolds. The shocks would be used only for qualifying, as the trick packages are not used in the races. NASCAR plans to test this idea here Monday and Tuesday, which coincides with the first big-track test of Chevrolet’s new Monte Carlo model, due in competition next year. The new shock package, if it works as planned, would be introduced at next year’s Daytona 500(Racer Magazine Site)(10-16-1999)
  • Toyota: it’s not actually in Winston Cup, but a Toyota Celica, driven by Larry Caudill, will make its NASCAR debut at the Goody’s Dash Series event Saturday night at Langley Speedway in Hampton, VA(Gaston Gazette)(10-16-1999) being told this is not Toyota’s debut, don’t know much about it, just reported the story and the link

    (10-15-1999)

  • More Martin: Mark Martin’s on-track performance in his Valvoline Ford, combined with contributions from Valvoline and NASCAR fans, has brought the current total raised for Big Brothers/Big Sisters to $154,409. Valvoline donates $5,000 for each Winston Cup race won by Martin, $2,500 for each pole and $20 for each lap led, in the “Caring Hands” program(JMar Express Newsletter)(10-15-1999)
  • New Associate? hearing that Cooper Lighting will become an associate sponsor for APR Racing and the #55 Square D car with driver Kenny Wallace, not sure when(10-15-1999)
  • Jayski Notes from Qualifying at Talladega: #10 Ricky Rudd has a Yates motor in the car, can you tell?; the #91 has a bare white paint scheme with aqua letters; the #89 Bobby Gerhart has Greektown Casino as the sponsor on his car; the #42 Joe Nemechek is purple for the Bellsouth Phone Card; #36 Jerry Nadeau has the Crispy M&M’s scheme; #40 Sterling Marlin chevy has the Brooks and Dunn colors; The #6 Mark Martin Ford has the Zerex-Valvoline colors; #31 Mike Skinner blew an engine on his warmup lap early and didn’t make an attempt; #3 Earnhardt only took one lap in qualifying instead of the two allowed after blowing his engine also, at least #71 Dave Marcis did ok with a Childress engine and will start 25th; #24-Jeff Gordon(14th) was out qualified by his two Hendrick teammates, #25-Dallenbach(7th) and #5-Labonte(8th)(10-15-1999)
  • No Cup for Little Al UPDATE: IRL team owner Rick Galles says two-time Indy winner Al Unser Jr. and he have agreed to run next season together in the Indy Racing League. However, they have not signed a contract, Galles said(SpeedNet)(9-28-1999) — UPDATE: Al Unser Jr confirmed in Australia on Friday that he has signed a multi-year contract with Rick Galles to compete in the IRL series. An announcement is expected to take place within the next two weeks. The team will have sponsorship from from Valvoline and Firestone(Race Magazine)(10-15-1999)
  • #7 News: owner Jim Mattei of Mattei Motorsports says the team doesn’t have a sponsor signed for 2000 yet but is talking to two potential sponsors and has set no deadline in terms of finding a sponsor(Winston Cup Scene Magazine). Nations Rent has been rumored as a potential sponsor but I have heard nothing on that in week(10-15-1999)
  • Lepage Back, TV Guide? #16 team owner, Jack Roush says he expects Kevin Lepage to be back in his fold again next season and has every reason that the TV Guide sponsorship will be finalized in the next few weeks(PitNow)(10-15-1999)
  • #98 Crew Chief: Dan Glauz has been named interim crew chief for the #98 team and driver Rick Mast(Winston Cup Scene Magazine)(10-15-1999)
  • Martin Car: #6 Valvoline Ford driver Mark Martin no longer has the car he drove to a third-place finish in the DieHard 500 in April at Talladega. That car was destroyed during a practice-session accident in July at Daytona(Tennessean)(10-15-1999)
  • Announcement TODAY? The will be a Pontiac/Jimmy Dean press conference at Talladega on Friday, Oct 15th at 10:30am/ct(10-14-1999) — have not heard yet what this is, but I hear it was an announcement of a Jimmy Dean contest winner(10-15-1999)

    (10-14-1999)

  • #19 Joyner-Kersee team news: Jackie Joyner-Kersee announced in July that she and husband Bob would partner with Kurt Roehrig to form a racing team. The process of getting started has taken a long time and the Roehrig said the team’s status for next year has not been determined. Roehrig, who owns a truck team and has run selected Cup races, said the team does not have a sponsor for next year. He says talks with one potential sponsor have gone well, though. If they can’t get something for Cup by the end of the month, they will concentrate on something else. If that is the case, the team plans to run a full season in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series and a partial Cup season. If the team gets a sponsor soon, it would run a full Cup schedule and a partial truck schedule. Roehrig and the Kersees would not consider joining an existing Cup team to race on that series full time without major sponsorship(in part from the Depot)(10-14-1999)

    (10-13-1999)

  • Spoiler Change? UPDATE: Not in the angle but I hear NASCAR will issue a bulletin on how the braces on the rear spoilers are placed. Basically it tells the teams where the support braces go, how many, and exactly where to put them. From what I understand, teams could put them at angles or more than three per side so the tool used by NASCAR could only be hung on the spoiler where the team wanted it, usually in the center. Then they would turn the corners back a couple of degrees. Less downforce(7-29-1999) — UPDATE: will be effective as of October 13th, 1999(before Talladega). An addition to the rule book covering the Rear Spoilers, concerning the Spoiler Braces. There can be a maximum of six, three per side, evenly spaced(7-30-1999) REPOSTED(10-13-1999)
  • #66 Crew Chief UPDATE: hearing the #66 Big Kmart/Route 66 team and crew chief Philippe Lopez have parted ways as of Monday. Supposedly team owner Travis Carter will handle the crew chief duties for the rest of the season. Darrell Waltrip(DW) drives the car. Hearing DW is testing at Rockingham and Lopez is not there(10-12-1999) — UPDATE: Travis Carter, co-owner of Haas/Carter Motorsports with Carl Haas, has taken over crew chief responsibilities for the #66 Route 66/Big Kmart Racing team for the remainder of the 1999 NASCAR Winston Cup season. Philippe Lopez, crew chief since May, will remain with the team(VanDercook and Company PR)(10-13-1999)
  • #45 Tyler Jet News: 10-10-345 (AT&T) has not yet informed the #45 Tyler Jet Motorsports either way of their plans for the 2000 season. The team also laid off the engine department and will outsource for the rest of 1999 and 2000. Chief Engine Builder Claude Queen and one other indivudual from the motor room have been retained to work on R&D and the possiblere-opening of the in-house motor program at a later date. From team owner Tim Beverley: “This was by no means any form of a cost-cutting move, but just the opposite. It’s going to cost us significantly more to purchase these motors from a reliable outside source. We are that committed to make this program stronger … even with just five races to go.” No word on who is building the engines for the team AND from the TNN site: “Effective at 8am this morning, I no longer work at Tyler Jet Motorsports,” former general manager Tom Mitchell told country.com Motorsports today. Citing a “difference of opinion” with team owner Tim Beverley on the direction the team should take, Mitchell stated that he thought it in the best interest of all concerned that he resign. And his future plans? “I might just go up to my house in the mountains, break out my ski gear and spend the winter skiing,” he chuckled. One of his last official actions at Tyler Jet was to lay off eight of 10 employees in the team’s engine shop effective immediately. Its head Claude Queen, has a contract with Tyler Jet, so he’s still with the team. According to Mitchell, the team has lately been using Hendrick Motorsports engines for its Winston Cup qualifying efforts, and now the team is negotiating to use the outside engine supplier for all of its Cup engine needs for the rest of the ’99 season(TNN)(10-13-1999)
  • #41 News? UPDATE: am hearing the #41 Hedrick team and Dick Trickle have parted ways, no idea who may drive the car at Talladega(10-12-1999) — UPDATE: In an announcement made today by team owner Larry Hedrick, veteran Winston Cup driver Derrike Cope has been tabbed to drive the #41 Kodiak Chevrolet in this week’s Winston 500 event at Talladega Superspeedway. Cope takes over the wheel from well-known driver Dick Trickle, who had been the pilot of the Kodiak/Larry Hedrick Motorsports race car for the last month(TNN Motorsports Site)(10-13-1999)
  • Pit Road Move: about the Skinner and Gordon’s Pit Controversy: NASCAR officials said there were no written rules governing Gordon’s pit-road move. “That’s something that they’ll have to settle between themselves,” said Tim Sullivan, a spokesman for NASCAR. “Neither of them was speeding on pit road, thus no penalty was handed out.”(AP)(10-13-1999)
  • RJR sponsorship UPDATE 2: R.J. Reynolds(Winston) is reportedly considering dropping its sponsorship of the Winston Racing Series(NOT THE CUP SERIES), the nationwide weekly track sponsorship package that has been a key marketing part of its development of the Winston Cup tour, according to NASCAR sources. The Winston Racing Series has been an effort to tie together the hundred or so NASCAR short tracks around the country with a cohesive marketing plan, despite the diverse nature of the various tracks and racing divisions involved. Reynolds’ move would likely be tied to government settlements of tobacco issues. NASCAR officials have been shopping the series around to other potential sponsors(PitNow)(10-11-1999) — UPDATE: R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company has decided that its Winston brand’s NASCAR sponsorship cannot continue to include the NASCAR Winston Racing Series, the weekly short-track racing program that it has been primary sponsor of for 26 years, after the conclusion of the 1999 season(NOL) I am hearing Exide Batteries may step in as the sponsor. Tobacco sponsors are leaving in droves it seems the #’s 23,33 and 41 teams all are losing their Tobacco based sponsors at the end of 1999(10-12-1999) — UPDATE 2: NASCAR is talking with five companies about sponsorship of the series in the future. One of those companies is Exide, which decided to cease sponsoring the Richmond fall Winston Cup race after this season. The sponsorship includes a $1.4 million championship fund(Times-Dispatch)(10-13-1999)

    (10-12-1999)

  • Benson Update: Johnny Benson continues to explore his options for 2000. “Though A.J. Foyt brings a winning tradition and attitude to NASCAR, we were concerned that with such a late start and Foyt’s decision to build his own cars and engines, the likelihood for short term results was not promising” according to Rob Albright, business agent for Benson. “With Johnny’s strong committment to General Mills, the decision to leave Roush was an emotionally difficult and financially costly one. Johnny’s objective is to take his talents to a team that he believes has the necessary elements for success already in place, and is both competitive and loyal. We’ve already said ‘no’ to a couple of situations that we feel didn’t fit these criteria. We’re aggressively pursuing those that do.”(10-12-1999)
  • Buckshot at Talladega UPDATE: Buckshot Jones will drive the #30 Jimmy Dean Pontiac at Talladega(Buckshot Jones Website)(10-11-1999) — UPDATE: Buckshot Jones, a two-time winner in the BGN series, will attempt to qualify the Jimmy Dean Pontiac for Sunday’s Winston 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. Eel River Racing announced the one-race deal with Jones on Tuesday. Brunswick, one of Jones’ top sponsors, will be on the #30 Pontiac Grand Prixs as an associate. The team likes the fact that Jones has tested a Pontiac at Talladega recently. Jones ran in the April 25 DieHard 500 at Talladega for the Buckshot Racing team. He qualified 26th and ran in the top-10 through much of the race before getting shuffled back to 21st at the finish. The team and Jones will be utilizing a Hendrick engine(Hoagland Communications)(10-12-1999)
  • Penske Chassis: Heard this on NASCAR2Day and during the race a few times – That #2-Rusty Wallace and #12-Jeremy Mayfield are using different chassis and are unable to share data when they test. I am getting a lot of email wondering what this means and maybe the team will switch to Chrysler/Dodge. Not sure what it means and am not looking to speculate on it. Penske is known to experiment with his teams(in CART etc) and to try new things(10-12-1999)
  • Martin to leave BGN? Mark Martin, the all-time wins leader in the BGN series, is considering leaving the circuit at the conclusion of the 2000 season. An official announcement of Martin’s plans is expected at the end of this season, either at Miami-Homestead Speedway – the final race of the Grand National season – or at the Winston Cup series’ season finale the following weekend at Atlanta(That’s Racin’)(10-12-1999)
  • Foyt Driver: As expected, A.J. Foyt announced that he will put his #14 on a Winston Cup Pontiac next year. However, the driver of his Conseco-sponsored car will not be Johnny Benson, as many within the NASCAR hierarchy had assumed. Foyt insisted he had made no decision yet, but a member of his team said that Benson, or any other Winston Cup regular, for that matter, had been eliminated in a meeting Saturday morning. Foyt has repeatedly declared that he would rather risk tearing up a few cars than have a driver committed to anything other than winning, and as a result he has apparently decided against hiring a driver with Cup experience. Billy Boat, a former sprint-car standout who now drives one of Foyt’s two IRL cars, may be a candidate, in addition to Scott Sharp, who has been widely mentioned in connection with the ride(SpeedNet/Monte Dutton) AND Owner A.J. Foyt informed Johnny Benson that he no longer is under consideration for a driving job next season. Foyt appears to be concentrating on bringing in a driver from the open-wheel ranks(Times-Dispatch)(10-12-1999)
  • Morgan-McClure 2nd team: haven’t heard much on this in a while but starting to hear they will start a 2nd team but it’ll be a BGN team(10-12-1999)
  • What happened to Geoffrey Bodine? #60-Bodine was running 11th when he lost nine spots in the remaining laps, why? He ran out of fuel(10-12-1999)
  • Pontiac: With Bobby Labonte second and Ward Burton fifth, Pontiac picked up two more top-five finishes, giving the manufacturer 36 for the year. In the previous three seasons combined, Pontiac had just 31 top fives(News and Observer)(10-12-1999)
  • Marcis News: Dave Marcis has an edge as he heads into the Talladega race weekend. Marcis will use the same engine that Dale Earnhardt used when he won at Talladega earlier this season(Times-Dispatch)(10-12-1999)
  • Jarretts Magic # is 8: If Dale Jarrett can finish eight or better(or average 8th) in the last five Cup races, he clinches the Winston Cup championship. Jarrett would score enough points that no one could catch him(Henry/StockcarFans Newsletter)(10-12-1999)

    (10-11-1999)

  • Fast Race: new race speed record for the Fall race at Charlotte/Lowes, 160.373mph. The former record was 154.537mph, set by Ernie Irvan on October 10, 1993(10-11-1999)
  • Bickle Leads: #9-Rich Bickle led his first lap of the 1999 season, so that’s 43 drivers who have led at least one Winston Cup lap in 1999. To see who has led laps and who leads in the bonus points, see my Bonus Points Leaders Page(10-11-1999)
  • Big Kmart: the #9 Melling TBS Dinner and a Movie Ford has Big Kmart on the 1/4 panels. The #66 Big Kmart/Rt 66 Ford failed to make the race(10-11-1999)
  • Update on Randy Hall: The Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem(NC) still has Randy Hall listed in Satisfactory Condition as of this morning(10-11). Hall was the safety worker who was injured during a caution at Martinsville on Oct 3rd. For more into and address see my Oct 4th Past News Page, dated 10-7-1999. His family says Randy seems to get a little better every day, but it will take time(Martinsville Speedway)(10-11-1999)
  • Pemberton still doesn’t know: Current #36 crew cheif, Ryan Pemberton, who is being replaced by Sammy Johns who is coming over from the #33 APR team, doesn’t know what he is doing in 2000 yet, but he has talked to the #75 team as well as a Pontiac and Chevy(#25?) team and a start up team(PitNow)(10-11-1999)

(10-10-1999)

  • Richert UPDATE 2: Buddy Baker mentioned on TBS’s Happy Hour coverage that the he would say on the race telecast Sunday were current #28 crew chief, Doug Richert would be going in 2000. Richert will not be back with the #28 in 2000 as Michael McSwain will come over with 2000 #28 driver Ricky Rudd. Some rumors have Richert going to the #98 or #75 — UPDATE: But I now hear it’ll be to the new #32 Tide Ford team owned by Cal Wells(10-9-1999) — UPDATE 2: Per RPM2Nite – Doug Richert will move to the new Cal Wells Cup team(10-10-1999)
  • McSwain to the #28? UPDATE: Current #10 crew chief, Michael ‘Fatback’ McSwain has not signed with Robert Yates to follow driver Ricky Rudd over to the #28 Texaco ride, sourcres tell me this will happen, but nothing is official at this point(9-22-1999) — UPDATE: Mike McSwaim has officially been named crew chief for Ricky Rudd next season when Rudd moves to the #28 Fords owned by Robert Yates Racing. McSwaim will replace Doug Richert, who joined the #28 team at the beginning of the season(That’s Racin’)(10-9-1999)
  • Cheever News: IRL owner-driver Eddie Cheever, winner of the 1998 Indianapolis 500, also was in the Winston Cup garage yesterday. He could make an announcement in the next couple of weeks about starting his own (Cup or BGN) team(Times-Dispatch) — UPDATE: TNN’s Raceday reports that Cheever said to expect an announcement soon concerning a Cup team he will start(10-10-1999)
  • AJ News UPDATE 3: Waddell Wilson, the NASCAR veteran who is helping A.J. Foyt put together his new Winston Cup team, said things are coming along well. Wilson said the team now has six people on payroll and about 15 more committed to join next season. One job that hasn’t been filled is driver, but Wilson said that is Foyt’s department. Foyt, according to Wilson, will be in Charlotte next weekend, perhaps to officially announce his decision to race with Pontiacs and possibly name a driver(That’s Racin’)(10-3-1999) — UPDATE 1: Expect A.J. Foyt’s Conseco NASCAR Winston Cup team to field Pontiacs in 2000, and if he can work out the details, sign Johnny Benson to drive it(SpeedVision)(10-5-1999) — UPDATE 2: A.J. Foyt’s new Winston Cup team will field Pontiacs. He just doesn’t know yet who will be driving them. Except for the driver, everything seems to be falling into place for Foyt’s new Winston Cup entry. The team will be sponsored by financial services provider Conseco Inc., Foyt has acquired a race shop in Mooresville, N.C., and he has hired some key personnel, including team manager Waddell Wilson, crew chief Terry Wooten, engine builder Gregg Wilson and fabricator Bobby Watson(GoRacing and NOL)(10-9-1999) — UPDATE 3: Gregg Wilson will head up the team’s in-house engine department. Wilson, the son of team general manager Waddell Wilson, has been working with Fischer Engines, which builds the engines used by Geoffrey Bodine’s #60 Chevrolets. Foyt said he may also lease engines from Joe Gibbs Racing if the team falls behind in its preparations(That’s Racin’AND Johnny Benson and Rick Mast are the two men on Foyt’s list, but Benson appears less than interested in the option(PitNow), Mast? — UPDATE:….the driver of his Conseco-sponsored car will not be Johnny Benson. Billy Boat, a former sprint-car standout who now drives one of Foyt’s two IRL cars, may be the leading candidate. The driver of Foyt’s other entry, Kenny Brack, has a road racing background, and Foyt has said publicly he doesn’t think Brack, the 1998 IRL champion, is ready for NASCAR. Scott Sharp is another IRL driver who has expressed some interest in the Foyt ride(Gaston Gazette)(10-10-1999)
  • Petty Colors UPDATE: General Mills, STP and NASCAR legend(and team owner) Richard Petty unveiled the new Cheerios/Betty Crocker #43 for the 2000 NASCAR season today(10-9-1999). Cheerios becomes the first new primary sponsor for the car in 29 years, replacing STP(at the Pepsi 400 in July 2000) as the primary sponsor, STP will of course remain with the #43 as a major associate sponsor. John Andretti drives the #43 Pontiac(Image and story at PRN Newswire, thanks JonB) also have the image on my Paint Schemes page(10-9-1999) — UPDATE: The new design for the 2000 Winston Cup season was unveiled Saturday night in a press conference at Charlotte. Seven-time Winston Cup Richard Petty, owner of the car, helped create the new design, which is a result of a multi-year primary sponsorship agreement announced last month at Darlington. The #43 car, driven by John Andretti, will continue its 29-year association with STP, which will be the car’s primary sponsor through the June 2000 Winston Cup race at Sears Point. General Mills will become the #43’s primary sponsor at the Daytona race in July(with STP remaining as an associate)(SpeedNet)(10-10-1999)

    (10-9-1999)

  • Galaxy Motorsports Sponsors UPDATE: am now hearing that the #75 Ford, to be driven by Wally Dallenbach will be sponsored by Pizza Hut in conjunction with a another sponsor and the 2nd Galaxy Motorsports(formerly Butch Mock Motorsports) is talking to Turner Broadcasting/Cartoon Network(10-4-1999) — UPDATE: Winston Cup Scene Magazine reports that the Cartoon Network will be the primary and Pizza Hutt a n associate sponsor(10-9-1999)
  • Bodine Announcement: Hear Brett Bodine is supposed to announce at Charlotte that his #11 team has been sold to Winston West owner Richard Hilton and the sponsor will be Kroger, Ralphs/Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Quality Food Centers supermarkets in some manner(10-9-1999)
  • Robby Gordon news: present CART and former #40 Cup driver, Robby Gordon, is in Charlotte this weekend and says his plans to build his own Cup team for next season are coming along quite well(PitNow) Plans are supposedly for Gordon to compete on a limited basis(10-9-1999)
  • #90 Plans: Junie Donlavey plans to run three more Winston Cup races this season. The #90 Ford owner will take his team to Talladega Superspeedway next weekend with driver Ed Berrier. They plan to compete at the Homestead-Miami and Atlanta races as well, but no driver has been named for those events(Times-Dispatch)(10-9-1999)
  • New Taurus OK’d? UPDATE: Ford’s new body for its 2000 Taurus has been all-but-approved by NASCAR for competition. After further questioning around the Ford teams, the TNN website folks has found out that there is a meeting with Ford crewchiefs and NASCAR officials tomorrow(Friday) at 10:30am/et at a local Concord template-making shop to all-but-sign-off on the new templates(TNN Motorsports Site)(10-8-1999) — UPDATE: NASCAR met with representatives from each Winston Cup Ford team Friday morning, Oct. 8, plus a number of the independent body hangers to discuss the bodywork for the 2000 Taurus that Ford has presented to NASCAR. Ford’s Preston Miller said that the purpose of the meeting was “to see how the templates that NASCAR has prepared to fit that car actually do fit that car.”(Racer Mag)(10-9-1999)
  • SABCO BGN UPDATE: Team SABCO owner Felix Sabates is scheduled to announce his team’s full-time return to the NASCAR Busch Series in 2000 on Saturday, Oct 9th. The sponsorship contract will consist of a three-year agreement with a rookie driver(SABCO PR) David Steele?(10-8-1999) — UPDATE: Felix Sabates will have a pair of full time BGN operations for Blaise Alexander and USAC ace Dave Steele, the latter with the Channellock sponsorship according to Sabates. Although Alexander was running TracFone on his Team SABCO entry at Lowe’s Motor Speedway this weekend, final sponsorship arrangements are not yet completed on that car. Sabates will also field two partial Busch efforts, one for Kenny Irwin, who will replace Joe Nemechek in the #42 Winston Cup car, and the other for young Mexican driver Jimmy Morales. Morales’ car will be sponsored by TracFone, a cellular phone company owned by a Mexican conglomerate. It was TracFone who brought Morales to Sabates’ attention. The youngster will make his first appearance for Team SABCO in the hotwheels.com 300 at Homestead, Nov. 13. Sabates plans to run Morales in 10 Busch races and three ARCA races in 2000(Racer Mag Site)(10-9-1999)

    (10-8-1999)

  • Crew Member Numbers? Humpy Wheeler, president of Lowe’s Motor Speedway, wants to put uniform numbers on the crewmen as a means of identifying their roles in the lightning-fast pit stops that mark NASCAR events. Under Wheeler’s plan, crewmen would be assigned numbers from 1-12 based on their positions. As an example, all crew chiefs would wear the No. 1, and on the other end of the order, four utility members and potential replacements would wear Nos. 9-12.(Gaston GazetteAND another story, even has images: Claire B. Lang takes a look at new NASCAR uniforms proposed by Humpy Wheeler(GoCarolinas)(10-8-1999)
  • #98 Crew Chief? and 2nd team? UPDATE: I hear Mark Tudor and the #98 team parted ways on Monday. One rumor has Doug Richert being talked to as a replacement. Also hear the 2nd rumored team with Mike Ciochetti as driver will be #39 and may race at Homestead and/or Atlanta(10-5-1999) — UPDATE: Rick Mast’s No. 98 Ford team has undergone some changes this week with the loss of crew chief Mark Tutor. Mast, who qualified eighth for Sunday’s UAW-GM Quality 500, will help make race-day decisions along with team manager Garth Finley and Dan Gloutz. Mast said Gloutz has already been working in-house with Yarborough Motorsports preparing work for a second team to run a full schedule next season as a teammate to Mast. The driver for that team will be Mike Ciochetti, a regular in the ARCA series. Ciochetti is planning to run one Cup race this season at Homestead-Miami Speedway(That’s Racin’)(10-8-1999)
  • Musgrave to the…IRL? UPDATE joke: On RPM2Nite, Ted Musgrave says he has an opportunity to race in the IRL with a good team in 2000 and has tested. He stopped short saying that it was for sure but…(9-24-1999) — UPDATE – Joke: You know that story about Musgrave’s interest in the Indy Racing League? The IRL test? The second career in open-wheel racing? Gotcha. The whole thing was a figment of Musgrave’s extremely fertile imagination, dreamed up on the spur of the moment and floated simply to test people’s appetite for gossip. “Of course,” Musgrave conceded Thursday. “Somebody comes up to you and says, ‘You’re done with this job. You’re out of here. And, oh, by the way, what are you doing next year?’ “What do you come up with? I just said IRL to throw them off-guard, and they went for it.” Musgrave floated the story to several television and newspaper reporters two weeks ago after qualifying in Dover, DE, and it took on further life on the Internet(Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)(10-8-1999)
  • Junior Johnson Book Announcement UPDATE: Since I get many questions about Jr, I thought I’d post this: There will be an announcement of the new Junior Johnson biography by Tom Higgins and Steve Waid from David Bull Publishing. The announcement is set for Thursday, Oct. 7 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway and will be excerpted on 10/8 in the Charlotte Observer(That’s Racin’), on Oct. 10 in the New York Times and in the Oct. 14 edition of NASCAR Winston Cup Scene. Also, there will be a book signing at Waldenbooks at Carolina Mall in Concord, NC on 10/9 from 2:00-4:00pm/et. Johnson will also be on TNN’s Inside NASCAR Sat Oct 9th(usually at 4pm/et) and Sunday, Oct 10th at 10am/et(10-5-1999) — UPDATE: will be officially announced today, see my Racing Bookstore Page for more info on the book — UPDATE2: see some text from the book at the TNN site: New Book Details Stock Car Legend(10-7-1999) and a Book Review – Junior Johnson: Brave in Life by Matt McLaughlin(10-8-1999)
  • Rudd Auction? Today’s Winston Cup Scene Magazine reports that Ricky Rudd is preparing to auction off the equipment from his own team to make room for the #28 RYR team that will move into the shop after the 1999 season. If Rudd can’t find a buyer for his equipment or a partner to take over his team, Rudd plans to auction off his equipment by the end of the season(WC Scene)(10-8-1999)
  • Labonte Signs Longterm: Bobby Labonte, driver of the #18 Interstate Batteries Pontiac, yesterday said he’s just signed a five-year contract to drive for car owner Joe Gibbs. Labonte said that crew chief Jimmy Makar and Mark Cronquist, the chief engine man, also signed five-year contracts with Gibbs(PitNow)(10-8-1999)
  • Evernham at Track: former #24 Hendrick Motorsports crew chief Ray Evernham was back at the track Thursday, helping the Busch Grand National team he co-owns with Jeff Gordon qualify for Saturday’s All Pro Bumper-to-Bumper 300(News and Observer)(10-8-1999)
  • Honored: Wendell Scott and H. Clay Earles were honored this week by students at Druid Hills Elementary School. The approximately 300 students spent last week learning about racing and NASCAR. The week long program included seeing a video history of Martinsville Speedway, visits from Butch Hamlet, driver of the Taco Bell Late Model Stock Chevrolet, David Davis, driver of a Mini-Cup car at New River Valley Speedway and Dink Gardner who brought racing memorabilia to the school for display. The students also had a reading contest and wore racing shirts and hats to school. Tuesday, school Principal Bill Vickers presented Frank Scott, Wendell’s son, and W. Clay Campbell, president of Martinsville Speedway and grandson of Earles, plaques recognizing the dedication, determination and leadership of both Scott and Earles(Martinsville Speedway Newsletter)(10-8-1999)

    (10-7-1999)

  • Safety Worker Hurt UPDATE 5 upgraded again: Safety worker Randy B. Hall of Spencer suffered head injuries during a caution period that began on lap 291. As the safety vehicle headed to the third and fourth turns to tend to a crash involving Bobby Hamilton, Rich Bickle and John Andretti, Hall fell off the truck and hit his head on the pavement, rendering him unconscious. He was taken from the scene on a stretcher to the infield care hospital at Martinsville Speedway. Two attempts were made to transport Hall to Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem, North Carolina by AirCare helicopter. NASCAR officials waved the yellow flag on lap 374 to open the gate in the fourth turn to release the rescue vehicle, but Hall’s vital signs deteriorated and he had to remain in the care center until he was stabilized. A second caution was called on lap 404 to allow the ambulance to take Hall out of the track to the AirCare helicopter. According to reports, Hall suffered a four- to six-inch laceration on the back of his head and abrasions on his left shoulder and arm. His vital signs were good and Hall was conscious(thanks to NOL for the update)(10-3-1999) — UPDATE: He was taken to Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem, N.C., and is listed in critical condition with head injuries(That’s Racin’)(10-4-1999) — UPDATE 2: Randy Hall remains in critical condition(RPM2Nite) — UPDATE 3: Randy Hall of Spencer, VA. is still in critical condition at Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem, NC as of this afternoon. His condition has not been upgraded since he arrived at the hospital on Sunday. Matinsville Speedway Officials have been and are in contact with Randy’s family and as soon as they hear any further information I will post it. Hall suffered a 4-6 inch cut on the back of his head. The emergency room staff of the Memorial Hospital of Martinsville & Henry County, which works our Infield Care Center, stabilized him and AirCare took Randy to Baptist Hospital(Martinsville Speedway Newsletter)(10-5-1999) — UPDATE 4: Hall has been upgraded to serious condition. He is in the intensive care unit at Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem(The DepotADDRESS: The hospital address is North Carolina Baptist Hospital, Medical Center Blvd., Winston-Salem, NC 27157(10-6-1999) — UPDATE 5: Randy Hall of Spencer, VA. has been upgraded from Serious Condition to Satisfactory Condition at Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem, NC. According to a family member, Randy got out of bed last night and stood up. Hall is listed in room 561(see above for address)(Martinsville Speedway Newsletter)(10-7-1999)
  • #77 News: Jasper Motorsports is expected to announce soon that Robert Pressley will return to the #77 team for the 2000 season(The Depot)(10-7-1999)
  • #5 Colors in 2000: During a fan club meeting, Terry Labonte mentioned that the Kelloggs car would carry a little bit different paint scheme next year. Labonte didn’t give any details but said the car would still be the same colors(Tribute to the Labontes Site)(10-7-1999)
  • #15 makes field: The #15 Fenley-Moore Motorsports and driver Derrike Cope made a nice comeback at Charlotte qualifying 24th, see the story at That’s Racin’:Cope’s new team a success on first try by Jim Utter(10-7-1999)
  • New Sponsor? UPDATE: hearing Red Wing Shoes may be looking to get into Cup or BGN as a team sponsor? no other details(8-12-1999) — UPDATE: Petty Enterprises announced that Red Wing shoes has joined the team as an associate sponsor for the Cup cars driven by Kyle Petty and John Andretti and the Grand National car driven by Adam Petty(The Depot)(10-7-1999)
  • Carter/Yates Engines REPOST: Besides building Ford engines for his #28 and #88 teams, Robert Yates Racing will build engines in 2000 for the two Travis Carter teams(#66 and #23?), the #75 Butch Mock-Galaxy Motorsports team and the new Cal Wells Tide team(Winston Cup Today Radio) Yates is looking into leasing Butch Mock’s engine shop(Winston Cup Scene)(9-24-1999) — REPOST: Some readers sent me this again as heard on Speedvision’s Inside Winston Cup Racing on Monday(10-5-1999) — UPDATE: Mike Ege will run the shop for Yates and supply the engines to the #’s 23,66 and 75(10-7-1999)
  • Irvan inducted: Ernie Irvan was inducted into the Lowe’s Motor Speedway Court of Legends Wednesday afternoon, becoming the 14th inductee. Prior to retiring in September, Irvan competed in 20 NASCAR Winston Cup Series races at LMS, posting one of the most dominating victories in track history while driving for Robert Yates in 1993. Irvan won 15 races during his storied NASCAR Winston Cup career. Irvan autographed a section of cement in the walk while also setting his handprints and throttle foot in cement. Ironically, Irvan wore the same shoe he was wearing when he crashed at Michigan Speedway in August, effectively ending his career. Prior to his break into NASCAR Winston Cup Series racing, Irvan made his living welding seats at LMS(NOL)(10-7-1999)

    (10-6-1999)

  • Wells Driver: Cal Wells announced Wednesday that he had hired CART/Trans-Am/IMSA veteran Scott Pruett as the driver of the #32 Tide Ford for next season in the Cup series. Wells was hoping to announce his crew chief on Wednesday, but has had to put that off until Friday. Wells said that he has it narrowed down to two guys that are current NASCAR crew chiefs, but declined to elaborate further. Wells also shot down the rumors surrounding a possible Chrysler effort, or that he was looking at the recently-released Ray Evernham as a crew chief, says he has never met Everhham.(Racer Magazine)(10-6-1999)
  • Gordon’s Hendrick Future UPDATE: #24 Driver Jeff Gordon, three-time Winston Cup champion with Hendrick Motorsports, will assume some share of ownership in the NASCAR racing teams, acting team manager John Hendrick confirmed Friday. The team has scheduled a press conference for Wednesday at Lowe’s Motor Speedway(Racer Magazine)(10-2-1999) — UPDATE: not fooling around on this deal — Jeff Gordon signed a lifetime agreement unparalleled in NASCAR Winston Cup history. Gordon and Rick Hendrick said that the agreement will be effective January 1, 2000 and will continue for the duration of Gordon’s motorsports career. It assures his ongoing role as driver for the #24 Hendrick Motorspoits team and as a business partner with the team for the future. Under terms of the long-term contract, Gordon will become an equity partner in the Hendrick 24 team. It will continue to be operated as part of the three car Winston Cup operation fielded by Hendrick Motorsports, Hendrick said(Hendrick Motorsports Site)(10-6-1999)
  • Stewart Fined? HALF RIGHT: Tony Stewart was rumored to have been heavily fined($10,000) by NASCAR for his demonstration at Martinsville(the Irwin vs Stewart stuff)(Victory Lane Online) NOTE: This has not been confirmed(10-5-1999) — UPDATE: Tony Stewart was fined $5,000 Wednesday by NASCAR for his actions on the track during last Sunday’s NAPA 500 at Martinsville(That’s Racin’)(10-6-1999)
  • #17 Info: Matt Kenseth is carrying a new decal on his #17 Dewalt Tools Ford at Charlotte. Skills USA, a national organization offering training programs in technical, skilled at service occupations, is featured on the hood and lower quarter panel of the #17 Ford. DEWALT is supporting Skills USA’s signature-collecting drive during race weekend to help the youth organization reach its goal of compiling one million signatures to present to Congress in September of 2000 during the Washington Leadership Training Institute(MNI – motorsport.com)(10-6-1999)
  • Shop Closed UPDATE: Richard Childress Racing, which has one of its teams sponsored by Lowe’s Home Improvement Warehouse(#31 Skinner), has closed its race shop to visitors since Friday because of recent attacks and bomb threats on Lowe’s stores in North Carolina(The Depot)(10-3-1999) — UPDATE: As of yesterday afternoon(10-5), the RCR shop has reopened to the public and is operating as normal(10-6-1999)
  • Finally…Wells, an announcement UPDATE: A spokesperson for Cal Wells’ Precision Performance Inc. said Wednesday the team will announce its Winston Cup plans for the 2000 season next week at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte. The name most often being mentioned lately as the likely driver is Scott Pruett(from CART).(That’s Racin’)(9-30-1999) — UPDATE: Cal Wells is expected to announce on Wednesday that Scott Pruett will drive a #32 Tide-sponsored Ford for Precision Preparation Inc. Motorsports next season in Winston Cup. At 39, Pruett would be the elder statesman among the 2000 candidates for rookie of the year, joining Dale Earnhardt Jr., Matt Kenseth and Dave Blaney(maybe Mike Bliss)(SpeedVision)(10-6-1999)
  • Superbirds: the winged cars will be at Talladega in a big way next weekend(Oct 14-17th) starting with a Car show at the International Motorsports Hall of Fame and Museum, a Car show at the Sheraton Perimeter Hotel; the #71 Isaac Daytona and the #7 Stott SuperBird will be on display and on Sunday there is supposed to be a Parade lap of Talladega Superspeedway prior to the NASCAR Winston Cup race, there are expected to be 135 of these type cars there, and up to 150 cars(if that many show) will now be allowed on the track by NASCAR and cars will be permitted to do two parade laps. It now appears that The Nashville Network’s My Classic Car television show will be there to cover the event. See the site for info and images of the cars at www.Superbird.com(10-6-1999)
  • TV Guide Sold: Gemstar Buying TV Guide for $8.6B, not sure how this will effect sponsorship of the #16 Roush Racing Ford and driver Kevin Lepage(Gemstar does the VCRPlus stuff)(10-6-1999)

    (10-5-1999)

  • DW BGN ride UPDATE: Remember those DW BGN rumors a while back, well I am hearing that DW will drive the #48 Champion Potato Co Ford at Charlotte in October in a one race deal. His brother Michael is supposedly listed as the owner(6-21-1999) — UPDATE: it’s been a while since I heard anything on this and do not see DW listed on the BGN Entry List on NOL — UPDATE: Darrell Waltrip will not be running the BGN race at Charlotte. The deal for DW to drive the BGN car and promote the company’s product never came together(10-5-1999)
  • TV? NBC is favored to team with cable’s Turner for half of the lucrative NASCAR deal starting in 2001, along with CBS/TNN(USA Today/Rudy Martzke) Can’t imagine ABC/ESPN getting shut out(10-5-1999)
  • Jarrett’s Honored: Dale Jarrett and his wife Kelley, along with sponsor Ford Credit, were honored at The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation 1999 National Awards Luncheon in Dallas on Monday(Speed Magazine)(10-5-1999)

    (10-4-1999)

  • Pemberton Popular UPDATE: Ryan Pemberton is rumored to be the possible crew chief for Jeremy Mayfield and the #12 Mobil One team(TNN’s Raceday) AND Pemberton is the leading candidate to join driver Wally Dallenbach with Galaxy Motorsports’ #75 Fords next season as Dallenbach’s crew chief. Pemberton is currently exploring several options. He is also being considered for the crew chief duties with the #25 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy and has also been mentioned in conjunction with the new Winston Cup teams debuting next season with owners Cal Wells and A.J. Foyt(That’s Racin’)(10-3-1999) — UPDATE: I hear that current #12 crew chief, Peter Sospenzo, recently reupped to be the crew chief for Mayfield and the #12 through 2001 and that no one with Penske-Kranefuss Racing has spoken with Pemberton about the crew chief position(10-4-1999)
  • Rules Change? NASCAR officials are saying they may be handing out general-issue Daytona shocks next February like they hand out carburetor plates. How teams might react to not being able to run their own special shocks has yet to be gauged. NASCAR tried to implement shock rules at Daytona this season only to meet stiff resistance(PitNow)(10-4-1999)
  • Galaxy Motorsports Sponsors: am now hearing that the #75 Ford, to be driven by Wally Dallenbach will be sponsored by Pizza Hut in conjunction with a another sponsor and the 2nd Galaxy Motorsports(formerly Butch Mock Motorsports) is talking to Turner Broadcasting/Cartoon Network(10-4-1999)
  • Stewart/Irwin: There was no word from NASCAR late Sunday as to disciplinary action, if any, that might be taken against drivers Tony Stewart and Kenny Irwin, old rivals from their USAC sprint-car days(Racer Magazine)(10-4-1999)

(10-3-1999)

  • Short Track Season: The short track ‘title’ goes to Rusty Wallace by four points over Dale Earnhardt. The top ten: 1) #2-Wallace 891; 2) #3-Earnhardt 887; 3) #6-Martin 838; 4) #88-Jarrett 835; 5) #40-Marlin; 6) #24-Gordon 788; 7) #44-Petty 772; 8) #99-Burton 766; 9) #20-Stewart 734; 10) #31-Skinner 727 (Stock Car Fans Rumblings)(10-3-1999)
  • Top Fives: Geoffrey Bodine had his first top five of 1999 at Martinsville and first since Rockingham on Feb 22, 1998 or 57 races ago. Bodine is the 28th different driver in 1999 to record a top five(10-3-1999)
  • Martinsville Stuff: Jeff Gordon gets his first win without Ray Evernham at Martinsville will his new crew chief Brian Whitesell, Gordon has been the highest finishing Chevy in 15th of 27 races in 1999. Earnhardt almost became the 2nd ever provisional starter to win a race. Jeff Burton accomplished it earlier this year at Loudon(10-3-1999)
  • Rookies: Elliott Sadler was the Rookie of the race for the first time this year. Tony Stewart had been every race except one, when Buckshot Jones was the highest finishing ROTY candidate at Las Vegas. See my ROTY rules and standings page(10-3-1999)
  • Kenny Leads: When #55-Kenny Wallace lead laps at Martinsville, he became the 42nd driver who led at least one lap in 1999. Wallace was the last driver who has made ALL the Cup races in 1999 to lead a lap. To see who leads in the bonus points, check out my Bonus Points Page(10-3-1999)
  • Musgrave UPDATE: Ted Musgrave indicated he is not interested in returning to the Butch Mock team, bought out from under him this summer by businessman Darwin Oordt. Oordt left the door open for Musgrave a week ago, saying he likely would have two Winston Cup teams next year and that Ted remained in the running. Ted, however, is looking elsewhere. See the rest of the story by Ben Blake at Racer Magazine — UPDATE:Musgrave said on TNN’s Inside NASCAR that he would not stay with the Oordt organization to run a 2nd car, he basically gave a flat out “No” when asked(10-3-1999)
  • Gibbs Assoc: Joe Gibbs Racing announced that it would bring International Home Foods on board as an official sponsor for the cars of Bobby Labonte(#18) and Tony Stewart(#20) for the 2000 NASCAR Winston Cup season. IHF, manufacturer of such products as Chef Boyardee, Crunch n’ Munch and Gulden’s mustard, will feature its logo on the cars, as well as provide at-track hospitality on race weekends(Racer Magazine)(10-3-1999)

    (10-2-1999)

  • Gordon’s Hendrick Future: #24 Driver Jeff Gordon, three-time Winston Cup champion with Hendrick Motorsports, will assume some share of ownership in the NASCAR racing teams, acting team manager John Hendrick confirmed Friday. The team has scheduled a press conference for Wednesday at Lowe’s Motor Speedway(Racer Magazine)(10-2-1999)
  • #58 News: Car owner Scott Barbour will announce a sponsor for 2000 next week and will retain Hut Stricklin as driver of his #58 Ford. The sponsor could be Federated Auto Parts, whose colors have been on the car in selected recent races(SpeedNet/Monte Dutton)(10-2-1999)
  • Good News: #5,24 and 35 Cup team owner, Rick Hendrick is 100% in remission from his leukemia and 60 days from ending his medication, his brother, John, said yesterday. In fact, it was Rick Hendrick who handled the contract talks with (former)crew chief Ray Evernham last week. The owner of Hendrick Motorsports has been undergoing treatment after being diagnosed with leukemia in late 1996. Company President John Hendrick said the talks took their toll on Rick which resulted in Rick Hendrick releasing Evernham from his seven-year contract to work as Jeff Gordon’s crew chief. Hendrick said the team had negotiated a deal with Evernham to move into management and had planned a press conference for next week at Charlotte. John Hendrick said that Evernham notified them last week that he had changed his mind. His release took effect Wednesday, and Brian Whitesell has taken over as Gordon’s crew chief(Times-Dispatch)(10-2-1999)
  • Nemechek/Petree UPDATE 2: hearing Joe Nemechek has signed to drive the #33 Andy Petree Chevy in 2000(9-30-1999) — UPDATE: Andy Petree has a new driver for next season, and Joe Nemechek has a new job. The two signed yesterday to team for the next two seasons, with a third-year option. Petree said that he expected Nemechek to run his own Busch cars next season, and Petree said he was putting together a package for Kenny Wallace, now Nemechek’s new teammate in the Petree camp, to run a number of Busch races(PitNow)(10-1-1999) — UPDATE: Petree will also return to being a crew chief on the #33 in 2000(RPM2Nite)(10-2-1999)
  • AJ: Motorsports legend A.J. Foyt, who will field the No. 14 Pontiacs next season, is still in the process of selecting his driver, though IRL driver Scott Sharp and Winston Cup driver Ted Musgrave are considered the leading candidates(That’s Racin’)(10-2-1999)
  • #30 at Charlotte UPDATE: this weeks Winston Cup Scene magazine reports that Todd Bodine will drive the #30 Pontiac at Charlotte(10-1-1999) — UPDATE: Mike Bliss, who will leave the Roush Racing truck team after this season, will drive for #30 owner Jack Birmingham at Phoenix and Homestead and possibly Rockingham this season. A driver can run no more than five races in a season to be considered a rookie in the next season(The Depot)(10-2-1999)
  • Sponsor or no races: Joe Falk, owner of the #91 LJ Racing Chevy, said he will not run even a limited Cup or BGN schedule in 2000 without a sponsor. Falk, who plans to run four more Cup races this season, wouldn’t mind moving to the BGN Series, though. He says he’d like to develop a program with Tim Fedewa, who will be driving the Falk Cup car this weekend at Martinsville(Times-Dispatch)(10-2-1999)
  • Lucky Fan…Maybe: As Jeff Burton heads to Napa AutoCare 500 at Martinsville Speedway this coming week, he will be racing for more than just money and Winston Cup championship points. He’ll be racing for a home. That’s right if Jeff wins the race on October 3rd, one lucky fan will walk away the proud owner of a new Nanticoke town home package worth $250,000. When the lucky winner opens the garage door to their new Nanticoke Home, they will find a brand new Ford Taurus LX courtesy of Ford Motor Company. Not only that, but when they open the kitchen cabinets boxes of Hamburger Helper, Specialty Potatoes, Supermoist Cake and Bisquick stand ready to feed the hungry homeowners thanks to Betty Crocker, a proud associate sponsor of Burton’s teammate Johnny Benson, who drives the Cheerios Ford. In order for Nanticoke to give the home away Burton had to win two of the three races: The Jiffy Lube 300 at New Hampshire International Speedway on July 11th; The Napa AutoCare 500 at Martinsville Speedway on October 3rd; The Napa 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on November 21st. Mission accomplished on July 11th as he won the gas mileage war at New Hampshire. So all Burton needs to do is win the Napa AutoCare 500 on October 3rd at Martinsville Speedway(or Atlanta) and Nanticoke Homes will award the townhome package to one lucky fan(PR)(10-2-1999)

    (10-1-1999)

  • Notes from watching qualifying: #10-Ricky Rudd’s Ford looked very tie-dyed; #05-Morgan Shepherd’s Pontiac was totally white no sponsor on it; the #26 Cheerios Ford is gold; #33-Ken Schrader has the blue Skoal scheme; the #91-LJ Racing/Larry’s Homes car is red and yellow. Practice Accidents: #18-Bobby Labonte, #16 Kevin Lepage and #1-Steve Park wrecked their primary cars in practice and had to go to backup cars for qualifying(ESPN2 Qualifying)(10-1-1999)
  • Cowboys and NASCAR: The NFL Dallas Cowboys are negotiating to have two cars bearing their colors and logo race in next April’s Direct TV 500 at the Texas Motor Speedway, owner Jerry Jones said Thursday. The two Winston Cup cars – one predominantly silver and the other predominantly blue – would compete in the April 2 race. The Cowboys also want a car with their colors to compete in the Texas 300, a Busch Series race, on April 1. Jones would not divulge the names of the drivers the Cowboys have targeted, but spokesmen for Bobby Labonte and Rusty Wallace’s primary sponsor say they have had preliminary discussions with the Cowboys. For example, the Cowboys wouldn’t use Earnhardt because he has an endorsement deal with Coke. Jones has ties with Pepsi(Dallas Morning News) NOTE: that should rule out Labonte also as he has an endorsement deal with Coke also(10-1-1999)
  • RPM2Nite Evernham Interview UPDATE-LISTEN: Most of the show was dedicated to Ray Evernham and John Kernan interviewed Evernham, some of the things covered: Rick and John Hendrick offered Evernham a larger role and a management position in Hendrick Motorsports, there was no friction between the Hendricks or the crew about Evernham’s decision, Evernham will still be partners with Jeff Gordon with their #24 Pepsi BGN team, and when asked about the Chrysler rumors: Evernham said he had to “Dodge that question”, anyhow it was a good interview(9-30-1999) — UPDATE: you can listen to the interview at the ESPN NASCAR Page(10-1-1999)
  • Banquets: The NASCAR Winston Cup Series banquet will be held on Friday, Dec. 3, at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City. The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series banquet will be at The Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco on Friday, Dec. 10 and the NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division banquet will be held on Friday, Jan. 7, at The Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif.(NOL) The Cup banquet is private and closed to the public(10-1-1999)
  • Melling sponsor UPDATE: my understanding is that Turner Broadcasting/Cartoon Network, rumored to be going to the #75 team until the Pizza Hut rumor broke out, has not told the #9 Melling team it is leaving at the end of the season and may be back with them in 2000. — UPDATE: Melling Racing was informed today by The Cartoon Network that it will not return as the team’s sponsor for the 2000 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season(Melling PR)(10-1-1999)
  • TV Stuff: The NASCAR television package may be closer to being signed, but it’s not clear which way NASCAR officials might be leaning. According to one report, both ABC and Fox are each willing to take the entire 10-month Winston Cup season as a package(PitNow)(10-1-1999)