October 2007 Busch Series Archive
- McDowell to Attempt Last 3 Races: Michael McDowell will make his Busch Series debut this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. A former Star Mazda Series champion, McDowell will pilot the #00 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota from the Michael Waltrip Racing stable for the final three races of the Busch Series schedule.(McDowell PR)(10-31-2007)
- MacHill Moves to New Shop: As the Busch season winds down, #56-Mac Hill is scheduled to run only one more race this year, at Phoenix on Nov. 10. But the team is already planning for a successful season in 2008 as owner Jack McNelly recently purchased a 22,000-square-foot race shop in Mooresville, N.C.(Mac Hill PR)(10-31-2007)
- Starr to Nationwide Series in ’08? Hearing that David Starr is headed to the Nationwide Series in 2008 driving for one of the Toyota teams.(10-30-2007)
- Edwards Championship Clinching Scenerios: #60-Carl Edwards needs to leave Texas with a 390-point lead over #99-David Reutimann. If he finishes 36th or better, 37th and leads at least one lap, or 39th and leads the most laps, he will become the 2007 Busch Series champion – finally.(NASCAR PR)(10-30-2007)
- Raybestos Rookie Notes for Texas: David Ragan was the Raybestos Rookie of the Race in the Sam’s Town 250 at Memphis. Ragan posted a third-place finish, his fourth top-five and ninth top-10 in 2007. He claimed Raybestos Rookie of the Race honors for the 11th time in 32 races. Ragan leads Marcos Ambrose by 31 points (232-201) in the Raybestos Rookie standings entering the O’Reilly Challenge at Texas.Ragan is fifth in the Busch Series championship standings, best of any Rookie. He is 59 points behind fourth-place Kevin Harvick and 151 ahead of sixth-place Bobby Hamilton Jr. Ambrose is eighth in the standings, 51 points behind seventh-place Stephen Leicht and 16 ahead of ninth-place Greg Biffle.(Raybestos PR)(10-30-2007)
- Delphi Renews Sponsorship with Hendrick: Delphi Product & Service Solutions announced that it will continue its major associate sponsorship of Hendrick Motorsports during the 2008 NASCAR season. An associate sponsor of all of the 2008 Hendrick Motorsports entries, Delphi will also be the primary sponsor for the #5 Nationwide Series Chevy fielded by JR Motorsports for four races. In addition, Delphi will receive preferred logo placement on the #5 Sprint Cup Series car driven by Casey Mears at Las Vegas, Indianapolis and the second Texas race. Dale Earnhardt Jr. will drive the #5 Delphi Chevy in the Nationwide Series at Talladega and Daytona in July. Mark Martin will drive the other two races for Delphi — at Las Vegas and Texas in November.(Hendrick Motorsports PR)(10-30-2007)
- NASCAR may change point system for Nationwide Series: NASCAR officials are considering alterations to the point system for the Nationwide Series that would deny points for most, if not all, Sprint Cup drivers in 2008, several sources have told NASCAR Scene. Beginning in 2009, drivers in the top 35 in the Sprint Cup standings would not be eligible to receive points in the Nationwide Series, under a proposal being considered by NASCAR. NASCAR officials declined comment on the plan since it is under consideration. The sanctioning body, sources said, has also talked to teams in the series about other possible rules changes for 2009 in an attempt to differentiate itself from the Cup series.(SceneDaily.com)(10-29-2007)
- Krisiloff Out? Bodine in for Remainder of Year? UPDATE: Hearing that #14-Kyle Krisiloff is out of the car for the remainder of the year. Todd Bodine is expected to fill in for the remaining 3 races.(10-29-2007)
UDPATE: According to a team representative, “Kyle Krisiloff is scheduled to stay in the #14 Lilly/Walgreens Fords to finish the remaining three races of the 2007 season for Carl A. Haas Motorsports.”(Haas Motorsports)(10-29-2007)
- Davis Motorsports to Honor Texan Veteran: Both of the Davis Motorsports entries, # 0-Eric McClure and #01-Kertus Davis will carry the name of Jason March on their car at Texas as a way of saluting this American Hero. When Johnny and Kertus Davis were approached by the Texas Wal-Mart Heart group of truck drivers with their idea of honoring March, the Davis’ jumped at the chance to show their appreciation to March and all veterans who have fought for our freedom. Wal-Mart Heart is a group volunteers who are dedicated to providing encouragement and joy to children, veterans, and others who have been the victims of unfortunate circumstances.(Davis Motorsports PR)(10-29-2007)
- Busch Series Action Live on ESPN2 Saturday from Texas: On Saturday afternoon, ESPN2 continues its season-long coverage of the Busch Series with live racing from Texas Motor Speedway. The telecast of the 300-mile race begins at 3 p.m. ET with NASCAR Countdown. Dr. Jerry Punch will anchor ESPN2’s coverage with analysis by Rusty Wallace and Andy Petree. Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Mike Massaro and Shannon Spake will report from the pits. Allen Bestwick will host NASCAR Countdown. Dale Jarrett will join Bestwick in the ESPN Pit Studio along with Brad Daugherty.(ESPN PR)(10-29-2007)
- COT Planned for Nationwide Series in 2009: NASCAR officials confirmed Sunday plans to have a Car of Tomorrow chassis tentatively in place for the 2009 Nationwide Series season. During Saturday’s Busch Series broadcast from Memphis, Rusty Wallace mentioned a Nationwide Series COT chassis that is on display at NASCAR’s research and development center in Concord, N.C. NASCAR’s director of cost and research, Brett Bodine, confirmed that a prototype has been built and is undergoing tests. “We’re working on an ’09 [Nationwide] car,” Bodine said. “[Having it ready for] ’09 is tentative. It’s not set in stone but we’re working on it. We’ve informed some of the Busch owners and we’ve got a prototype at the R&D center.” At 110 inches, the wheelbase would match the current Nextel Cup chassis and includes all of the safety initiatives added in the COT design. However, Bodine said there will be significant differences between the two series, although the specifics have yet to be worked out. “There will be a different body style and different aerodynamic package,” Bodine said. “We’re working on all that stuff. We’re just not there yet, still working through all that process.(NASCAR.com)(10-28-2007)
- Bodine may stay in Truck Series in ’08: Defending series champion Todd Bodine may not be going to the Nationwide Series next year, as previously announced last month by Germain Racing. Germain planned on expanding to three teams with Bodine trading his #30 Toyota Tundra for a Camry, but those plans could change if the newly named Nationwide circuit runs a COT-type car in 2009, as rumored. “We don’t want to waste our money building a bunch of cars that we can’t use in a year. They’re going to be junk,” Bodine said. “We don’t have to be in [Nationwide]. If we stay in trucks another year, that’s fine.” Then, when the time comes to make a move, Germain may just go to the top of the NASCAR ladder. “We want to grow the business, that would be the [Nationwide] series at this time,” Bodine said. “But being that it’s COT cars, we might just skip that and go straight to Cup if we get the funding.”(ESPN.com)(10-4-2007)
UPDATE: Todd Bodine told Mike Bagley during Friday’s NASCAR Today on MRN Radio show that Germain Racing will staying in the CTS and NOT go Nationwide (Busch) racing next year because “NASCAR decided in ’09 the Nationwide Series going to COT cars and there was no sense of us wasting $350,000 to $400,000 on race cars that we would have to sell the next year for pennies on the dollar.”(10-28-2007)
- RWI to Announce Driver Lineup: UPDATES: Rusty Wallace, Inc. will hold a press conference Sunday morning in Atlanta to announce its 2008 driver and sponsor lineup. The team is expected to run 2 cars, one with Steve Wallace and the second with Chase Austin splitting driving duties with a Cup veteran. Both team are likely to be sponsored by Homelife Communities.(10-23-2007)
UPDATE: Hearing David Stremme will drive a part time Nationwide Series schedule for Rusty Wallace Inc in 2008, splitting time with rookie Chase Austin.(10-25-2007)
UPDATE 2: Expect an announcement Sunday in Atlanta that David Stremme will run a 20-race schedule of Nationwide Series races next season for Rusty Wallace, Inc. Sources close to the team tell Sirius Speedway that Stremme will split the schedule with youngster Chase Austin, running all the companion events with the Sprint Cup Series. Stremme is still rumored to be in the running for the handful of rides still open on the Cup side for 2008, as well.(Motorsports Soapbox)(10-25-2007)
UPDATE 3: Rusty Wallace Racing announced that the team will field two full-time entries in the 2008 NASCAR Nationwide Series. Steve Wallace will continue full time in the team’s #66 car for 2008, while its new #64 entry will feature several drivers. David Stremme will pilot the #64 in at least 17 2008 events, while Chase Austin will drive the 64 car in 15 races during the 2008 season. The team plans to put a well-known road racer behind the wheel of the #64 for the three Nationwide Series road course events in 2008. Team officials are currently in discussions with several drivers regarding that role and plan to name a driver in the near future. In addition to its driver announcement, the team also announced an agreement with General Motors and its Chevy nameplate, under which each Rusty Wallace Racing entry will be a Chevy in 2008. Providing backing for both teams in the majority of the 2008 events will be Atlanta, GA-based Atreus Homes and Communities, currently known as HomeLife Communities.(RWI PR)(10-28-2007)
- Carpentier to Drive Second Entry for GEM at Homestead: Valvoline Evernham Racing and Gillett Evernham Motorsports announced today that driver Patrick Carpentier will take over driving duties in the #10 Valvoline/Stanley Tools Dodge in place of Scott Riggs for the final two NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races at Phoenix and Homestead in 2007. Also announced was that Carpentier will enter the NASCAR Busch Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway in a second Gillett Evernham Motorsports Dodge.(Gillette Evernham Motorsports PR)(10-26-2007)
- Pattie Leaves Memphis to be with Father: UPDATES: Chip Ganassi Racing crew chief Brian Pattie has left Memphis Motorsports Park to be with his father, who is in an Atlanta-area hospital. Pattie is crew chief for Ganassi’s #42 Dodge, which is being driven this weekend by Indianapolis 500 winner and Indy Racing League champion Dario Franchitti. Franchitti is making his Busch Series debut this weekend. A Ganassi spokesperson said Pattie plans on returning to Memphis in time for qualifying tomorrow. Pattie did not miss any on-track time Friday.(SceneDaily.com)(10-26-2007)
UPDATE: Hearing that Pattie is not returning for the race; either Tony Glover or Donnie Wingo is expected to fly in to crew chief for Franchitti.(10-27-2007)
UPDATE 2: Pattie did not make it back to the track. Tony Glover served as crew chief in his place.(ESPN Race Coverage)(10-27-2007)
- Cobb Announces Sponsor for Phoenix: Jennifer Jo Cobb and Richardson-Netzloff Racing announced that the Annexus Group of Scottsdale, Ariz., will serve as the primary sponsor for the team’s #44 in the Busch Series race at Phoenix. The race will serve as Cobb’s debut at PIR and her fourth career attempt in the series. She is the only female driver to attempt a NASCAR Busch Series race this season.(SceneDaily.com)(10-26-2007)
- Following 18th birthday Logano full-time in ’08: Busch East Champion Joey Logano will turn 18 next May 24th, reaching NASCAR’s “legal” age to compete on their top three series. So, beginning the next week at Dover, Joe Gibbs Racing plans on running him in all the remaining 2008 Nationwide Series races.(Joe Gibbs Racing PR)(10-26-2007)
- Associate Sponsor for Phoenix Racing at Texas: Parkway Chevy of Tomball, TX will be an associate sponsor on both Phoenix Racing Busch Series cars for the race at Texas Motor Speedway. Parkway Chevy will be featured on both the #1 Miccosukee Gaming Resort car driven by JJ Yeley & the # 7 GEICO car driven by Mike Wallace during the race during the Saturday November 3 race.(Parkway Chevy PR)(10-25-2007)
- RYR Shock Absorber Penalty from Mexico Overturned: The National Stock Car Racing Commissioner, Charles Strang, has advised the National Stock Car Racing Commission of the following: As the final appellate authority within NASCAR, the Commissioner held an appeal hearing on Wednesday, October 24, 2007 concerning penalties imposed following the inspection of the shock absorbers on Busch Series car #90 at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal on August 4, 2007. The National Stock Car Racing Commission (the first level of appeal) had previously reduced the original penalties imposed by NASCAR following a hearing it had conducted on September 18, 2007. The Appellants elected to further appeal that decision to the National Commissioner as provided for in Section 15 of the NASCAR Rule Book. Subsequent to this second-level, final appeal hearing, Mr. Strang found that “the results of the inspection process are not adequate to prove culpability on the part of the appellant or his associates.” Mr. Strang therefore ordered that:
The 25 Busch Series Championship Car Owner Points shall be restored to car owner Robert Yates.
The 25 Busch Series Championship Driver Points shall be restored to driver Stephen Leicht.
The $5,000 fine for crew chief Charles Barraclough shall be eliminated. (NASCAR PR)(10-25-2007)
- Lawson Looks for Busch Debut at Memphis: Chris Lawson, 22-year-old native of Medway, Ohio, looks to make his Busch Series debut this Saturday at the Memphis Motorsports Park. Lawson, currently a body hanger at Michael Waltrip Racing, enters the Sam’s Town 250 with Jimmy Means Racing, piloting the #52 Ford.(Hi-Speed Marketing PR via Catchfence.com)(10-25-2007)
- National Stock Car Racing Commission Overturns Hendrick Penalty: Hendrick Comments On October 23, 2007, the National Stock Car Racing Commission heard and considered the appeal of Hendrick Motorsports regarding the #5 Busch Series car driven by Kyle Busch. The appeal concerned a penalty issued by NASCAR following post-race inspection on September 29, 2007 for the Busch Series event at Kansas. The infractions concerned Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR Rule Book “Actions detrimental to stock car racing”; Section 12-4-Q “Any determination by NASCAR Officials that the car, car parts, components, and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules” and Section 20A-5.9.D(4): “Unapproved intake manifold modifications to the plenum area.”
In deciding the Appeal, the Commission considered several factors:
·Cars, car parts, components and/or equipment are not approved by reason of having passed through inspection at any time or any number of times unobserved or undetected.
·While rules enforcement must, by necessity, be discretionary in areas not readily measured by gauge, scale or template, the current Busch Series manifold rules place extra emphasis on a strictly visual determination of whether or not too much material has been extracted in the plenum area during the polishing process. By and large, Officials need the flexibility to say when a modification has “gone too far”. However, a direct comparison with the unpolished manufacturer casting or other approved pieces can be inconclusive in some respects without the introduction of additional enforcement parameters.
·The manifold did conform to the applicable NASCAR-approved gauges and other measuring devices.
Therefore it is the unanimous decision of the National Stock Car Racing Commission to rescind (overturn) the original penalty assessed by NASCAR.(NASCAR PR)(10-24-2007)
Hendrick Comments: Car owner Rick Hendrick responded to Tuesday’s decision: “Obviously, we’re pleased with the decision,” Hendrick said. “We appreciate the commission giving us the opportunity to present the facts and send a clear message about our performance at Kansas. The team prepared a race-winning car that met every rule in the book. It’s important that our fans, our sponsors and our competitors know that’s the case.”(Hendrick Motorsports PR)(10-24-2007)
- AutoZone Will Not Return to RCR: In addition to the #29 Holiday Inn program, RCR announced Oct. 23 that BB&T has agreed to a multi-year contract extension for the #2 team and Clint Bowyer’s full-season assault on the series championship. The search continues for sponsorship of its two-time championship-winning #21 team with current sponsor AutoZone’s departure at the end of the season.(Richard Childress Racing PR)(10-24-2007)
- Holiday Inn Renews with Childress: Holiday Inn has exercised the option in its current contract with Richard Childress Racing by signing a multi-year contract extension as the Official Hotel of RCR and the primary sponsor of RCR’s #29 Chevy in the Nationwide Series with co-drivers Scott Wimmer and Jeff Burton. At the same time, Wimmer has reached agreement with RCR on a contract extension with he 10-time NASCAR championship-winning organization. The 2008 season will once again feature Wimmer and Burton as co-pilots of the #29 Holiday Inn Chevy, with Wimmer behind the wheel for 23 races and Burton the remainder of the 35-race schedule. Wimmer will also run a limited schedule of NASCAR Cup Series events next season.(Richard Childress Racing PR)(10-24-2007)
- Kenny Wallace to Practice & Qualify #26 for McMurray: More Drivers Named: Jamie McMurray will drive the #26 Dish Network Ford in Saturday’s Sam’s Town 250 at Memphis. McMurray will be in Atlanta for the Nextel Cup Series event which will cause him to miss Busch practice and qualifying, but he will fly to Memphis in time for the race. Kenny Wallace will fill in for McMurray for Friday’s practice sessions and qualifying on Saturday morning.(Roush Fenway PR)(10-23-2007)
UPDATE: Five Busch Series teams have designated backup drivers for this weekend’s Sam’s Town 250 at Memphis. The teams’ regular drivers will be in Atlanta for Nextel Cup practice Friday and Saturday. Matt McCall will substitute for points leader Carl Edwards in Roush Fenway Racing’s #60 Ford, while Auggie Vidovich will sub for Roush Fenway’s David Ragan and Kenny Wallace for Jamie McMurray. Mark Green will practice and qualify for David Reutimann in Michael Waltrip Racing’s #99 Toyota, with Casey Atwood driving J.J. Yeley’s #20 Joe Gibbs Racing Chevrolet.(SceneDaily.com)(10-23-2007)
- Raybestos Rookie Notes for Memphis: David Ragan was the Raybestos Rookie of the Race in the Dollar General 300 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Ragan posted a sixth-place finish, his eighth top-10 finish this season and claimed Rookie of the Race honors for the ninth time in 31 races. He scored the fourth consecutive top-10 finish by a Rookie in the fall race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway and is the fourth different driver to claim top rookie honors in the last four races. Ragan leads Marcos Ambrose by 24 points (215-191) in the Rookie standings entering the Sam’s Town 250 at Memphis. Ragan is fifth in the Busch Series championship standings, best of any Rookie. He is 152 points behind fourth-place Jason Leffler and 35 ahead of sixth-place Bobby Hamilton Jr. Ambrose is ninth in the standings, 59 points behind eighth-place Stephen Leicht and six ahead of 10th-place Matt Kenseth.(Raybestos PR)(10-23-2007)
- 150 Starts for Leffler: #38-Jason Leffler, currently fourth in the series driver standings, looks to make his 150th start in the Busch Series at Memphis.(NASCAR PR)(10-23-2007)
- BB&T Extends with Childress; Bowyer to Run for Nationwide Championship: BB&T Corporation and Richard Childress Racing have extended their sponsorship agreement through 2009. BB&T will continue its role as the official bank of RCR and the primary sponsor of Clint Bowyer’s #2 BB&T Chevy in 25 Nationwide Series races as Bowyer competes for the 2008 Nationwide Series Championship. BB&T will be a major associate on the #2 car for the remaining 10 races on the Nationwide schedule and will be featured on the car’s lower rear-quarter panels. BB&T also will strengthen its position within the RCR family of sponsors and serve as the primary sponsor on Bowyer’s #07 Chevy for Cup Series races next spring at Martinsville and Richmond.(RCR PR)(10-23-2007)
- Marc Mitchell at Memphis as Teammate to Keller: Marc Mitchell will be making his second Busch Series start of the season with CJM Racing. He finished 20th in the #11 Ergon Chevy at the Milwaukee Mile. This weekend, however, Mitchell will be piloting the #12 Ergon Chevy as a teammate to Jason Keller.(CJM Racing PR)(10-23-2007)
- McCumbee Headed to Busch: UPDATE: Petty Enterprises General Manager Jerry Freeze said Chad McCumbee will attempt to qualify a third Petty Enterprises car for the season-ending Nextel Cup Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, or try to qualify for the Busch Series race that weekend. “If this Busch opportunity comes through, we may let him focus on that, along with his Truck Series commitment,” Freeze said. “One way or the other, we’ll run him at Homestead.” McCumbee is likely to stick with Petty Enterprises next season. Freeze said there are plans for Petty to partner with an existing Busch team to have McCumbee drive in 22-24 races. McCumbee is also penciled in to drive Kyle Petty’s Nextel Cup car for the five races he’ll again skip to jump into the broadcast booth. Plus, there may be opportunities to qualify for a handful of other Cup races in a third Petty car without jeopardizing his rookie status.(Myrtle Beach Sun)(10-21-2007)
UPDATE: Petty Enterprises said that they are trying to put together a deal to run Chad McCumbee on the 2008 Nationwide Series, but that the deal is in no way linked to a manufacturer change. Sources say McCumbee would land in the Carl Haas-owned #14 Fords currently driven by Kyle Krisiloff.(Motorsports Soapbox)(10-22-2007)
- Franchitti to Make Busch Debut at Memphis: Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (CGRFS) announced driver Dario Franchitti will make his Busch Series debut Saturday at Memphis. In preparation for the race, Franchitti is scheduled to spend Wednesday testing at Kentucky Speedway.(CGRFS PR)(10-22-2007)
- Hamlin and Kyle Busch to Drive #18 in 2008: Joe Gibbs Racing will pair Kyle Busch, its recently signed 22-year-old driver, with veteran JGR driver Denny Hamlin in the Nationwide Series for 2008. The two drivers, who have a combined 15 wins in what is currently known as the Busch Series, will share the #18 Toyota. While the driver lineup is set, the missing element is that of a sponsor.(Joe Gibbs Racing PR)(10-22-2007)
- Busch Series Action Live on ESPN2 Saturday from Memphis: On Saturday afternoon, ESPN2 continues its season-long coverage of the Busch Series with live racing from Memphis Motorsports Park. The telecast of the 250-lap race begins at 3 p.m. ET with NASCAR Countdown. The .75-mile Memphis track has been on the Busch Series schedule since 1999 and has produced seven winners through eight events. Kevin Harvick, the only driver to have won twice at Memphis, drove to victory in last year’s race en route to the series championship. Harvick’s other Memphis win came in 2000. Marty Reid will anchor ESPN2’s coverage from Memphis, with analysis by Randy LaJoie and Rusty Wallace. Pit reporters will be Allen Bestwick, Shannon Spake and Vince Welch.(ESPN PR)(10-22-2007)
- Colin Braun to Drive at Memphis: Roush Fenway Racing driver Colin Braun will make his first career start in the Busch Series at Memphis this Saturday in the #16 3M Ford Fusion. Braun has competed in three ARCA/ReMax Series races this season for Roush Fenway with one top-five and three top-10 finishes. He also made his debut in the Craftsman Truck Series last weekend at Martinsville Speedway.(Roush Fenway PR)(10-22-2007)
- 16 Teams Participating in Design a Dream at Memphis: Leverage Sports, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and Memphis Motorsports Park, have created an event to recognize the children fighting for their lives at the hospital founded by Danny Thomas in 1962. The primary program is called the Design a Dream campaign and is scheduled to take place on October 27, at the Sam’s Town 250 at Memphis. The Design a Dream campaign has recruited 16 Busch series racecars to participate in the event. The children cared for at the hospital have designed the paint schemes for all participating cars competing in the event. “St. Jude is very proud to have so many teams support our Design a Dream campaign. We feel that 16 teams participating in a first year program is very strong,” said Kevin Nienhuis, Manager of Sports Marketing for St. Jude. “The exposure generated from this campaign will help to bring great awareness to the Racing to Save Lives program. The children that helped to design the cars are very excited for race day.” Teams that have committed to participate in the event include: #28 Checkers Chevy, #10 Fan1st.com Toyota, #0 Hefty Chevy, #21 AutoZone Chevy, #90 CitiFinancial Ford, #33 Campers World Chevy, #77 Dollar General Chevy, #36 BigLots Chevy, #38 Great Clips Toyota, #22 Super Cuts Dodge, #35 McDonald’s Ford, #47 Clorox Ford, #11 CJM Racing Chevy, #99 Toyota, #20 FedEx Chevy, & #25 FreeCreditreport.com Ford.(Leverage Sports PR), see images of many of the cars on the Busch Series Paint Schemes Page.(10-22-2007)
- Special Helmet for Johns at Memphis: When Richard Johns suits up for the Sam’s Town 250 at Memphis, he’ll be wearing a special, one-of-a-kind helmet. Johns, driver of the #25 FreeCreditReport.com Ford, had a patient at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital design the paint scheme on the helmet he’ll don for the race on October 27. Following the event, drivers in the Busch Series field will autograph the helmet and it will be auctioned off to benefit St. Jude. The helmet was designed by Carlos Rodriquez.(FreeCreditReport.com PR)(10-22-2007)
- Nationwide Series Logo Unveiled: NASCAR and Nationwide Insurance today unveiled the logo for the NASCAR Nationwide Series. The introduction of the new logo is the latest step for the series’ transition to Nationwide as its title sponsor, after 26 years of sponsorship by Anheuser-Busch’s Busch brand. The logo was designed by St. Louis, Mo.-based Jump Co., following collaboration between NASCAR and Nationwide.(NASCAR PR)(10-18-2007)
- Where is Phil Parsons? Phil Parsons is as busy today as he ever was as a driver, if not moreso. Parsons, like older brother Benny, turned to broadcasting once his driving days came to an end. Parsons now works as a broadcaster on SPEED’s coverage of Craftsman Truck Series and ARCA events. He also appears on DirecTV’s NASCAR Hot Pass. From the time Parsons left for Daytona this year for the ARCA season opener through Thanksgiving, he’ll have been home — get this — a total of three weekends. What’s more, Parsons and his wife of 23 years, Marcia, have a 19-year-old daughter, Kinsley, who is a sophomore at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, and 9-year-old twins, Cami and Stefan. A kid in college and two in elementary school? Parsons has one that knows everything and two that are into everything.(NASCAR.com)(10-18-2007)
- Wallace Tests at Lakeland: Steve Wallace, Car Chief Shane Huffman and the rest of the #66 team were in Lakeland, FL earlier this week, testing at USA International Speedway in preparation for next weekend’s event at Memphis.(RWI PR)(10-18-2007)
- Clements Bank in the #36 at Memphis & Texas: Jeremy Clements will be behind the wheel for McGill Motorsports for the Memphis (Oct. 27) and Texas (Nov. 3) Busch Series races. Clements picked up the two-race deal Tuesday afternoon, McGill Motorsports crew chief Ricky Pearson said. Pearson said the team doesn’t have a major sponsor for either race but is searching for some financial backing. He also said that there’s a good possibility Clements could be in the car for the season’s final two races – Phoenix (Nov. 10) and Homestead (Nov. 17).(Spartanburg Herald Journal)(10-17-2007)
- Coleman Signs with Brewco for 2008: After a successful rookie season in the Busch Series, Brad Coleman has decided to leave Joe Gibbs Racing to pilot a full-time ride in the #27 Kleenex Ford Fusion with the new owners of Brewco Motorsports. In the move, Coleman will reunite with his former Crew Chief, Shawn Parker.(Brad Coleman PR)(10-17-2007)
- Edwards Looks to Clinch Championship in Memphis: #60-Carl Edwards, who holds a 638-point lead over second-place #00-David Reutimann and a 753-point advantage over third-place Kevin Harvick, can clinch the crown by leaving Memphis with a lead of 585 points or more over the second-place driver in the point standings. He also has a bit of a cushion as he can lose 53 points and still earn the crown.(NASCAR PR)(10-16-2007)
- Sherman to Drive for Braun at Memphis & Texas: A Braun Racing spokesperson confirmed that Brent Sherman will drive the team’s #10 Toyota in the upcoming Busch Series races at Memphis at Texas. Sherman had driven in the first 30 races with McGill Motorsports before leaving the team prior to the Charlotte race.(SceneDaily.com)(10-16-2007)
- McClure Running Special Scheme at Memphis: Eric McClure and the #0-Hefty Team will be representing St. Jude Children’s Hospital in the Design a Dream Event at Memphis Motorsports Park next weekend. The #0 Hefty Chevy will be sporting a new paint scheme that was designed by St. Jude’s patient William, who will be at the track. Prior to the race, McClure will be making a special stop at St. Jude on Thursday to tour the hospital and meet the patients.(McClure PR), see an image of the car on my Busch Series Paint Schemes page.(10-16-2007)
- Cicci Racing Wants to Run Final 4 Races: Although Frank Cicci Racing’s presence at the race track has been a desire for the team, they have been diligently devoting all of their time to seeking sponsorship. Although the team doesn’t have anything solid signed yet, they would like to run the last four races this year and is still seeking funding for the 2008.(FrankCicciRacing.net)(10-15-2007)
- Wolfe Returning to Fitz in 2008: Current #22 crew chief Paul Wolfe has re-signed with Fitz Motorsports for the 2008 Nationwide Series Season. Wolfe, who brought the team their first win in the NASCAR Busch East Series last year, has been a leading factor in the turn-around of the team this season, according to owner Armando Fitz.(Fitz Motorsports PR)(10-15-2007)
- Brandon Miller Driving for KHI at Memphis: Brandon Miller will climb behind the seat of the #77 Dollar General stores Chevy for the Sam’s Town 250 at Memphis(KHI PR)(10-15-2007)
- NASCAR Takes Busch COT to Wind Tunnel: NASCAR has had its planned new Busch version of the car of tomorrow in the wind tunnel this week, with Detroit car makers sending engineers over to discuss various options. NASCAR officials have been considering allowing more leeway on the body styling of the new model, which is tentatively set to debut in 2009.(Winston Salem Journal)(10-13-2007)
- 2008 Driver Lineup Taking Shape: The driver lineup for several Nationwide Series teams for 2008 is shaping up. Current series points leader Carl Edwards will run the full season against next year, a Roush Fenway Racing spokesman said, and Michael Waltrip Racing officials said David Reutimann would also run the full Nationwide schedule. Marcos Ambrose and Kelly Bires will return to race full time for Wood Brothers/JTG Racing next year, a team spokesman confirmed. Brewco Motorsports hopes to have one driver for each car next year, new team owner Gary Baker said Friday. One driver in the mix, likely for the # 37, is Baker’s son, Brad, who was entered at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. The other driver is anticipated to be Brad Coleman, sources said. Coleman was a part of Brewco until he signed with Joe Gibbs Racing for this season. Fitz Motorsports owner Armando Fitz said there is a 95 percent chance that Mike Bliss would drive the team’s #22 Dodge in all 35 Nationwide races next year. Fitz said the team has sold sponsorship for every race, and Bliss wants to drive for the team. An announcement could come before the race in Memphis in two weeks. Gillett Evernham Motorsports could expand to two full-time teams next year, a source close to the team said. The rides would be split among the team’s Cup drivers, with development drivers likely filling in, too. (SceneDaily.com), see the 2008 Nationwide Team Chart for a look at drivers and teams currently expected to compete next year.(10-12-2007)
- Armor All to sponsor Stewart at Daytona: Armor All will sponsor two-time Nextel Cup Series champion Tony Stewart in the 2008 season-opening NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Daytona Int’l Speedway and Tony Stewart Racing (TSR) driver Donny Schatz in the 2008 World of Outlaws Sprint Series. Stewart will race his signature #20 at Daytona for Joe Gibbs Racing. With that Feb. 16 race serving as Stewart’s debut as an Armor All spokesman, his open-wheel racing team will carry the familiar orange, black and yellow colors of Armor All for the entire 2008 World of Outlaws season.(True Speed Comm/Tony Stewart PR)(10-12-2007)
- Reutimann returning to #99 – running for championship: Announcements from Michael Waltrip Racing also included that David Reutimann, currently second in NASCAR Busch Series drivers points, will drive the #99 Toyota Camry sponsored by Aaron’s Sales Lease and Ownership, Best Western and XM Satellite Radio, full-time in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, running for the championship.(Michael Waltrip Racing PR)(10-12-2007)
- RCM Racing to debut full-time in ’08: Rick Clark became hooked and has attended several races through the years. With investors and sponsorship pending, he’s ready to become a car owner now, as his RCM Racing team plans a debut full-time in NASCAR’s Busch Series next season. A limited Cup schedule is also planned.(SportsIllustrated.com)(10-12-2007)
- Special Scheme for St. Judes on #18 at Memphis: J.J. Yeley & FedEx are teaming up to represent St Jude’s Hospital in Memphis, TN at the Sam’s Town 250 on October 27th. J.J. will be making his first Busch Series start of 2007 for Joe Gibbs Racing in the #20 Chevy. This spring J.J. held his 1st annual Golf Tournament just outside of Phoenix, AZ, and St Jude’s was the Charity that benefited from that fundraiser. This paint scheme was designed by Garrett (a patient @ St Judes) and he will be at the track to cheer J.J. on. See and image of the car on my Paint Schemes Page.(10-11-2007)
- Dale Jr. in the #8 at LMS: Dale Earnhardt Jr. is among 20 Nextel Cup Series drivers scheduled to compete in the Dollar General 300 Busch Series race Friday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Earnhardt Jr. is entered in the #8 Menards Chevy fielded by Dale Earnhardt, Inc.(Menards Racing PR)(10-11-2007)
- Changes for Brewco & Braun Racing: After eight seasons with Brewco Motorsports Stewart Cooper has opted for a change. Beginning this weekend at Lowe’s Motor Speedway Shawn Parker has taken over crew chief duties on the #37 Ford while Cooper has plans to move on with another team. Beginning next week Cooper will make the move to Braun Racing and will debut on the # 38 Toyota of Jason Leffler in Memphis. Current crew chief Todd Lohse will take over the role of competition director for Braun for the 2008 season with Cooper more than likely taking over as the shot caller. Parker added that as the teams look towards the 2008 season a driver announcement – which is rumored within the garage to be Brad Coleman – for the #27 is expected within a few weeks and the #37 team is still in negotiations. Parker would not comment on the driver announcement, only stating that it will not be a Nextel Cup driver.(TheHotLap.com)(10-11-2007)
- Where is Tommy Houston? Tommy Houston is just one race away from being surpassed for most Busch Series starts. He has held the mark since April 5, 1988, when Dale Jarrett missed an event at Langley, Va. Both drivers had run the first 184 races in the division’s history, and Houston would go on to make the starting grid for its first 360. Not until March 5, 1994, when Houston failed to qualify at Richmond, did a Busch Series event go off without Houston in the field. Keller tied Houston’s mark of 417 career starts at Kansas and he’ll attempt to pass it at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Houston, who today owns rental property at Holden Beach, N.C., as well as doing some welding and pit-cart construction at his Hickory, N.C. shop, is part of a hard-core racing family. He raced, and so did his brother, Hal. And Hal is the father of Teresa Earnhardt. All of Tommy and Martha Houston’s three sons — Scott, Andy and Marty — were involved in Tommy’s race teams to one extent or another, and Andy and Marty would go on to purse driving careers themselves.(NASCAR.com)(10-11-2007)
- “Meet the Robinsons” on the #38: Jason Leffler’s Toyota will have a different look this weekend at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Great Clips, Inc. and Walt Disney Home Entertainment have partnered to promote the October 23rd DVD release of “Meet The Robinsons.” The #38 Great Clips Toyota will feature the “Meet The Robinsons” characters and movie logo.(Braun Racing PR)(10-10-2007)
- Motorsports Designs on the #16 at Lowe’s: IMAGE: Motorsports Designs, the leading provider of racing graphics for NASCAR teams, has partnered with 3M Graphics to be the featured company with their logo on the hood of the #16 3M Ford driven by Greg Biffle on Friday night in the Dollar General 300.(Motorsports Designs PR)(10-10-2007)
See an image of the car on my Paint Schemes Page.(10-10-2007)
- Carpentier to Run Some Nationwide Races in 2008: Gillett Evernham Motorsports announced that they have added Patrick Carpentier to their driver lineup for 2008. The Quebec native and former open wheel stand out will drive fulltime in the Sprint Cup Series next year as well as select races in the Nationwide Series.(GEM PR)(10-10-2007)
- Key Motorsports Plans Move to Nationwide Series: Key Motorsports founder and owner Curtis W. Key, Sr. is planning a return to the NASCAR racing series in which he first toiled 15 years ago. Currently a full-time competitor in the Craftsman Truck Series, Key Motorsports took ownership this week of its first four Nationwide Series cars. Key purchased Chevys from the inventory that became available following the recent merger of Ginn Motorsports and Dale Earnhardt, Inc. The additional purchase of a speedway car, two short track cars and a road course car is also being planned. “With NASCAR now going full-time with the COT cars in the Sprint Series starting next season, field should open up and allow organizations like ours to compete. We see an opportunity to expand our program into that circuit to provide our sponsors with some alternatives,” Key explained. “We have had talks with some drivers and prospective crew chiefs, and some of these drivers have the potential to bring some sponsorship money with them. If this all happens, Key Motorsports will have a presence in the Nationwide Series in 2008,” he added.(Key Motorsports PR)(10-10-2007)
- Big Weekend for Jason Keller:
Keller Set to Break All-Time Starts Record: #11-Jason Keller knew this day would come. He’s been looking forward to becoming the Busch Series’ all-time leader in starts, a feat he can accomplish Friday night at Lowe’s Motor Speedway when it’s expected the 37-year-old native of Greenville, S.C., will make the 418th start in a career that has spanned 17 seasons.(NASCAR PR)(10-10-2007)
AND Sweet Baby Ray’s to Sponsor CJM: CJM Racing announced Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbecue Sauce as a primary sponsor for two of the five remaining races in 2007. The #11 Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbeque Sauce Chevy driven by Jason Keller will debut this weekend at Lowe’s Motor Speedway during Friday night’s Dollar General 300. During this event Keller will break the record for all-time starts in the Busch Series. The award-winning sauce will also sponsor CJM Racing and Keller during the O’Reilly Challenge Busch Series event at Texas.(CJM Racing/MCG Sports PR)(10-8-2007)
- Edwards Can Clinch Championship Friday night: Let the 2007 NASCAR Busch Series championship scenarios begin. Driver standings leader Carl Edwards has his first opportunity Friday night to reach the main goal he set for the 2007 season. If Edwards – who has led the standings since the third race of the season at Mexico City – leaves Charlotte with a lead of 781 or more points, he will have clinched the title. He currently leads second-place David Reutimann by 696 points.(NASCAR PR)(10-9-2007)
- Allmendinger Making Final Start for Ganassi: This weekend’s Busch Series run at Lowe’s Motor Speedway will mark A.J. Allmendinger’s last effort with the #42 Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Busch team since it was announced in late August he was going to be driving a limited amount of races for the organization.(CFRFS PR)(10-9-2007)
- Brewer to Serve as Memphis Grand Marshal: Memphis screenwriter and director Craig Brewer will serve as Grand Marshal of the Busch Series Sam’s Town 250 on Saturday, Oct. 27, at Memphis Motorsports Park. Brewer’s films capture the complexion and experience of the American South, creating unforgettable characters that manage to both entertain and challenge audiences. His award-winning works include The Poor and the Hungry, Hustle & Flow and Black Snake Moan. In his upcoming feature film, Maggie Lynn, Brewer includes an aspiring dirt track racer with dreams of NASCAR greatness.(Memphis Motorsports Park PR)(10-9-2007)
- Kevin Hamlin Expects to Continue Testing Role in 2008: There was speculation that Hamlin would drive a full Nationwide Series schedule for Ganassi next year, but he said that probably isn’t the case. “I don’t think so,” the Washington native said. “I have a role of testing and limited races here and there. Obviously, as a driver I want to go full-time, but I’m pretty lucky to be able to do this for a living. I have a lot of fun coming here with these test guys. Next year, we’re going to be doing a lot of testing and hopefully, I’ll get a handful of races and we’ll see what happens.”(Gateway Raceway PR)(10-9-2007)
- Special Scheme for Ragan at Lowes: David Ragan and the #6 Discount Tire Ford team will have a different look this weekend in Charlotte. The team will use a reverse paint scheme on the #6 Ford. The car’s primary color will be black with indigo orange and white. The Discount Tire corporate office has agreed to and dedicated the special paint scheme to the entire team because of their hard work and dedication to the 2007 season.(RoushFenway PR), see an image of the car on my Paint Schemes Page.(10-9-2007)
- Busch Series Action Live on ESPN2 Friday from Charlotte: On Friday night, ESPN2 continues its season-long coverage of the Busch Series with a live, prime-time race from Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte. The telecast of the 300-mile race begins at 7:30 p.m. ET with NASCAR Countdown. Dr. Jerry Punch will anchor ESPN2’s coverage from Charlotte, with analysis by Andy Petree and Rusty Wallace. Pit reporters will be Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Mike Massaro and Shannon Spake, while Tim Brewer will report from the ESPN DISH Tech Center. Allen Bestwick will host NASCAR Countdown. In addition to coverage of the race, ESPN2 will have a live telecast of Busch Series qualifying Friday, Oct. 12, at 4 p.m. Coverage of the final practice airs Thursday at 6 p.m.(ESPN PR)(10-8-2007)
- Rookie Notes for Dollar General 300: Kyle Krisiloff was the Raybestos Rookie of the Race in the Yellow Transportation 300 at Kansas. Krisiloff scored a 28th-place finish and took top rookie honors for the second time this season. David Ragan leads Marcos Ambrose by 24 points (215-191) in the Raybestos Rookie standings entering the October 12 Dollar General 300 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Ragan is fifth in the Busch Series championship standings, best of any Raybestos Rookie. He is 196 points behind fourth-place Jason Leffler. Ambrose is eighth in the standings, 114 points behind seventh-place Greg Biffle.(Raybestos PR)(10-8-2007)
- Dollar General on the #33 & #77 at LMS: For the Dollar General 300 under the lights at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, fans will have to pay close attention to the cars driven by Kevin Harvick and Bobby Labonte. Adorned with the Dollar General platinum paint scheme, Harvick will be behind the wheel of the #33 and Labonte will pilot the #77.(KHI PR)(10-8-2007)
- GEICO Sponsorship in Busch Will be Sunset: UPDATE: From the Nationwide Series announcement: Q. In terms of working through the insurance category, are we talking about potentially a grandfather type situation or something completely different?
Steve Phelps [NASCAR chief marketing officer]: We are going to have a sunset provision. It really is only affecting one outlet, and that – one company, and that would be GEICO. They will have a two-year provision, a two-year sunset, which we think will give those involved an opportunity to go elsewhere, and GEICO potentially to migrate up to what will become the Sprint Cup or the Craftsman Truck Series.(NASCAR Transcript)(10-3-2007)
UPDATE: With this week’s announcement that Nationwide Insurance will be the new sponsor for NASCAR’s #2 series, Wallace’s Busch Series sponsor — rival GEICO — has been given two years to leave the series. “I’m really frustrated about it, to be honest with you,” Wallace said after Saturday’s qualifying. “I guess they caught us all off-guard. We knew nothing about it.”I originally thought, ‘Well, that’s no big deal. We’ll be grandfathered in, just like Alltel was in the Cup deal.’ Then all of a sudden, that changed. Hopefully, the sponsor will stay involved for the two years left in their contract and we’ll make the best of it.”Wallace said he now expects to sit down with his sponsor to determine a plan for the immediate future.(NASCAR.com)(10-7-2007)
- Yates Could Close Busch Team: UPDATE 2: New Crew Chief for Remainder of ’07: As far as the Busch side [of Yates Racing, Co-owner Doug] Yates said he wasn’t sure what would happen with that team [#90-Stephen Leicht]. “It’s not the No. 1 priority,” Yates said. “If Citi would like to come back [as a sponsor] or we could find sponsorship, we would run it. But the No. 1 deal is to get our two Cup teams back to where they need to be.”(SceneDaily.com)(9-28-2007)
UPDATE: Robert Yates Racing released Stephen Leicht, driver of the #90 CitiFinancial Ford, effective as of the end of the 2007 Busch Series season. Leicht remains under contract with RYR through the conclusion of the 2007 season. Leicht, who is currently in 9th place in the Busch Series driver standings, will continue to drive the #90 for the final five races of the season. Leicht will pursue other opportunities within NASCAR for the 2008 season.(StephenLeicht.com)(10-2-2007)
AND: Hearing the #90 crew chief Cully Barraclough is headed to the #88 RYR Cup team.(10-2-2007)
UPDATE 2: Charles “Cully Barraclough has taken over the crew chief duties from Butch Hylton in the #88 Cup car. Bruce Cook, the car chief on the #90-Busch car, will take over for Barraclough as crew chief for the final five races of the season.(SceneDaily.com)(10-6-2007)
- Sorenson in for Steve Wallace at Lowes: In an effort to assist their team’s driver and vehicle development processes, Rusty Wallace Racing officials announced that Reed Sorenson, will pilot the team’s # 66 HomeLife Communities Dodge in next weekend’s Dollar General 300 in Charlotte. The event will be Sorenson’s only start in the #66, before handing the wheel back to Steve Wallace for the remainder of the season. Further, the team confirmed that Wallace will wheel its #66 entry full-time in 2008.(RWI PR)(10-4-2007)
- Nationwide Series Begins with the 2008 season:
NASCAR announced that Nationwide Insurance will become title sponsor of the NASCAR Nationwide Series, replacing Anheuser-Busch’s Busch brand at the start of the 2008 season. Nationwide Insurance will also become the official auto, home and life insurance provider of NASCAR.
The seven-year agreement gives Nationwide Insurance the exclusive rights to tie its brand to the most popular form of motorsports in the U.S. Nationwide Insurance will enjoy the support of the most brand-loyal fans in all of sports, including 2.7 million who annually attend races of the series, which features 35 points events at 26 tracks across North America, including Mexico City and Montreal.
“We are thrilled that we had the opportunity to select a partner in Nationwide Insurance who is as excited as NASCAR about taking the NASCAR Nationwide Series to even higher levels of popularity,” said NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France. “Nationwide Insurance is an ideal partner for NASCAR, advocating safe driving, and already serving millions of NASCAR fans with its auto, health, and life insurance. The company has a real passion for NASCAR, which will benefit our fans and all the participants in our industry.”
“Nationwide is excited about this long-term partnership and recognizes that NASCAR has the most loyal and dedicated fan base of any sport,” said James Lyski, Chief Marketing Officer for Nationwide. “We look forward to putting tremendous energy and resources into supporting this sponsorship and advancing the profile of the NASCAR Nationwide Series.”
The NASCAR Nationwide Series, broadcast on ESPN2 and ABC is stronger than ever. The series is the third highest-rated regular-season sport on cable television. Viewership in 2007 to date vs. 2000 is up 52%. The 2005 and 2006 seasons were the most viewed in series history.
Nationwide Insurance, which will generate approximately $200 million in annual media exposure through its sponsorship, is already serving millions of NASCAR fans with auto, home, and life insurance. Nationwide Insurance has had a partnership with track operator Speedway Motorsports Inc., for the past eight years, providing “On Your Side” information guides, transportation services and fan pit stops.
“Nationwide is a company that helps consumers plan for their futures, so they can achieve their dreams,” Lyski said. “The NASCAR Nationwide Series provides a unique environment for Nationwide to extend its On Your Side brand promise, not only to race fans, but to the next generation of outstanding NASCAR drivers pursuing their dreams of competing at the highest level.”
NASCAR fans are more likely to feel loyal towards an insurance company that is a sponsor, according to the ESPN Sports Poll. Additionally, NASCAR fans are more likely to have automobiles, be homeowners, and have children in the household, according to Simmons National Consumer Survey research.(NASCAR PR)(10-3-2007)
- Nationwide in final stages to sponsor ‘Busch’ Series UPDATE: Nationwide is moving into the final stages of negotiations to replace Anheuser-Busch’s Busch beer as title sponsor of NASCAR’s #2 series, sources are telling Street & Smith’s SportsBusiness Daily. Michael Smith of Street & Smith’s SportsBusiness Journal this morning reported in the Daily that Nationwide submitted an offer last Thursday, as did Subway, the sandwich franchise operation that had been considered the frontrunner. Nationwide’s talks with NASCAR progressed over the weekend, the story said, and a contract proposal is believed to be in the legal pipeline at Nationwide. Officials at NASCAR say that it does not have a deal with a new sponsor, but sources say an agreement with Nationwide could be finalized in the coming days.(SceneDaily.com)(10-2-2007)
UPDATE: Nationwide Insurance will become the new title sponsor of the NASCAR Busch Series in 2008, sources close to the negotiations confirmed Tuesday. An official announcement is expected Wednesday. Nationwide will pay an estimated $12 million per season for a multiyear deal, slightly more than Anheuser Busch was paying. NASCAR officials considered going a year without a title sponsor before Nationwide joined the negotiations last month.(ESPN.com) AND Allstate is the official insurance company of NASCAR, but this new sponsorship deal will likely require Nationwide to take over that role. NASCAR officials did not immediately return a call for comment. It’s also not clear what Nationwide will call the series, which has been the Busch Series since A-B took over as title sponsor for what was first known as Late Model Sportsman and later the Grand National Series.(AP)(10-3-2007)
- 2008 Schedule Announced For Nationwide Series: As NASCAR celebrates its 60th anniversary, the 2008 season will bring a new name – the NASCAR Nationwide Series to the nation’s second-most popular series.
In 2008, the series – currently known as the Busch Series but in its final year of sponsorship from Anheuser-Busch – will again start its season at Daytona International Speedway (Saturday, Feb. 16) and end at Homestead-Miami Speedway (Saturday, Nov. 15).
For the second consecutive season, there will be two international events. The series will return to the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve road course in Montreal, Quebec, Canada on Aug. 2. And for a fourth consecutive year, the schedule includes a race at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez road course in Mexico City, Mexico. However, for the first time in the brief history of the event, it will move from its previous date on the first Sunday in March to April 20.
Some of the key changes to the 2008 NASCAR Nationwide Series schedule include:
* A historic doubleheader at California Speedway with the Craftsman Truck Series on Saturday, Feb. 23.
* The Mexico City race trades slots with the event weekend at Phoenix International Raceway.
* Las Vegas Motor Speedway’s race will now fall one week earlier on March 1 and starts an early-season domino effect where three other races precede their dates by one week from last season – Atlanta Motor Speedway (March 8), Bristol Motor Speedway (March 15) and Nashville Superspeedway (March 22).
* The order of the two races following the first open week of the season (March 29) also moves up one week. The spring race at Texas Motor Speedway will be April 5 with the Phoenix event on April 11.
* Also, the addition of lights at Chicagoland Speedway will facilitate an inaugural Friday night show for the series there on July 11.
There will be nine “stand-alone” events: Nashville (March 22 and June 7), Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez (April 20), Kentucky Speedway (June 14), the Milwaukee Mile (June 21), Gateway International Raceway (July 19), O’Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis (July 26), Circuit Gilles Villeneuve (August 2) and Memphis Motorsports Park (Oct. 25).
The Nationwide Series is scheduled for 35 races in 2008 – 26 combination events with the Sprint Cup Series and three in conjunction with the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. There are 26 race tracks on the schedule divided among 20 states, Canada and Mexico. The 2008 season will mark the 60th anniversary of NASCAR, which was incorporated on Feb. 21, 1948.(NASCAR PR)(10-3-2007)
2008 Nationwide Schedule: is posted on my 2008 Nationwide Series Schedule page.(10-3-2007)
- Bumgarner Fined For Rule Violations At Kansas: Hendrick will Appeal: Mike Bumgarner, crew chief for the #5 Chevy driven by Kyle Busch in the Busch Series, has been fined $10,000 for an infraction committed last weekend at Kansas Speedway. Bumgarner was found in violation of Sections 12-4-A (actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4-Q (car, car parts and/or equipment used in the event not conforming to NASCAR rules); and 20A-5.9D (4) (unapproved intake manifold modifications to the plenum area) of the 2007 Busch Series rule book. The violation was found during post-race inspection on Sept. 29 and was confirmed during an additional inspection at the NASCAR Research and Development Center in Concord, N.C., on Tuesday.(NASCAR PR)(10-3-2007)
UPDATE: Car owner Rick Hendrick responded to NASCAR sanctions announced today involving the #5 Busch Series team of Hendrick Motorsports. “To say we’re confused about this situation would be an understatement,” Hendrick said of NASCAR’s decision. “The intake manifold that the team used was legal and we look forward to presenting the facts to the National Stock Car Racing Commission.”(Hendrick PR)(10-3-2007)
- Franchitti to Run Some Busch Races in 2008: Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (CGRFS) announced reigning Indianapolis 500 and IndyCar Series Champion Dario Franchitti has signed a multi-year deal with the organization to compete in the Sprint Cup Series beginning in 2008. Franchitti will pilot the #40 Dodge next season while running for the Sprint Cup Raybestos Rookie of the Year title along with an assortment of Busch Series races.(CGRFS PR)(10-3-2007)
AND: Chip Ganassi mentioned during the announcement press conference that Franchitti would also run some ARCA and Busch races this year to get additional experience.(10-3-2007)
- Eury Replaces Ward at JR Motorsports: JR Motorsports Director of Competition Tony Eury Sr. has been named interim crew chief of the #88 Navy team and driver Brad Keselowski for the remainder of the Busch Series season, replacing Wes Ward. JR Motorsports has chosen not to renew Ward’s contract, and is giving him the opportunity to pursue other options. With the help of car chief Ricky Cade, Eury will serve in an interim capacity until a full-time replacement has been determined for 2008. Eury will continue to serve his primary role as Director of Competition throughout this interim assignment.(JR Motorsports PR)(10-2-2007)
- Record Purse for Lowe’s Race: Featuring more than 20 Nextel Cup drivers battling the Busch Series regulars, competitors in the Dollar General 300 on Friday night, Oct. 12, will be chasing $1,268,191 in posted prize money and awards, an increase of $24,460 from last year.(LMS PR)(10-2-2007)
- Clements in the #36 at Lowes: UPDATE: Jeremy Clements said Thursday that he has a one-race deal to drive for Boiling Springs-based McGill Motorsports in the Oct. 12 Busch Series race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Clements will replace Brent Sherman. Sherman is scheduled to part ways with the team after Saturday’s race at Kansas Speedway.(Spartanburg Journal)(9-28-2007)
UPDATE: “We hoped to put Jeremy in a car for part-time schedule prior to this event but we were unable to secure a sponsor for him,” commented team owner John McGill. “He is a real racer and amazing undiscovered talent. We are very excited to have him as part of the McGill Motorsports’ #36 team. “Our goal is to have a strong performance at Lowe¹s Motor Speedway that will hopefully showcase Jeremy and our team to a potential sponsor who would be interested in joining us in the NASCAR Busch Series for the remaining events of this season and possibly 2008.”(Jeremy Clements PR)(10-2-2007)
- Mike Wallace to drive #03 for Germain at Talladega CTS race: During an interview on “The Driver’s Seat” on Sirius Radio, Mike Wallace said he is scheduled to drive a third entry [#03 Toyota] for Germain Racing in the Mountain Dew 250 at Talladega this week.(Sirius Radio)(10-1-2007)