September 2001 Busch Series Archive

  • Green Wins again: #10-Jeff Green elected not to pit during a late caution Saturday, and the gamble paid off with a win in the inaugural Mr. Goodcents 300 at Kansas Speedway. #36-Hank Parker Jr was 2nd and #60-Greg Biffle was 3rd. Points leader #29-Kevin Harvick was involved in an accident and finished deep in the field, 38th. Green cut Harvicks points lead to 187points (4,101 to 3,914). See That’s Racin’ for Mr. Goodcents 300 results(9-29-2001)
  • Lepage wins pole at Kansas: #71-Kevin Lepage won the pole at Kansas with a speed of 174.210mph with #2-Kevin Harvick 2nd at 173.907. See That’s Racin’ for Mr. Goodcents 300 lineup(9-28-2001)
  • Ultra Motorsports to Quit Cup? UPDATE 3 Grubb to drive?: While contemplating taking sponsor NationsRent to court, Ultra Motorsports owner Jim Smith says he won’t run his Winston Cup team without sponsorship next year. He does, however, expect to have a Busch Series team in addition to his two-team entry in the Craftsman Truck Series. He plans on running a Dodge in the Busch Series, and will convert his Cup team to Dodges as well if it still exists. Truck series star Ted Musgrave expects to drive for the team, but exactly what he’ll drive is uncertain. He has heard from a few Winston Cup teams, but said they currently lack sponsorship so he’s wary of signing with anyone else. Problems with NationsRent, meanwhile, will likely send Smith to court. “We have a contract for next year,” Smith said. “They’re in financial trouble, I don’t know. I see us in court very soon.”(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(9-13-2001)
    UPDATE: hearing the team and crew chief, Jim Long, along with a few employees have parted ways with the team
    UPDATE 2: Buddy Barnes and Scott Lepage will lead the Ultra Motorsports NASCAR Winston Cup team and the #7 NationsRent Taurus beginning with this weekend.s race at Dover. Owner Jim Smith made the announcement Tuesday morning after accepting the resignation of Jim Long. “We’re moving forward,” Smith said. “We’re not quitting. We’re not stopping. We’re going to keep doing everything we can do to be successful. Both Buddy and Scott have plenty of experience and they know how to run a race team.” Lepage has been car chief for Ultra Motorsports, while Barnes has been heading up the research and development program. Both are veterans in NASCAR Winston Cup racing.(Williams Company)(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE 3: hearing the Ultra Motorsports may have Kevin Grubb in the seat of either his BGN or Cup Team in 2002(9-28-2001)
  • Amick Engines: Team Amick Motorsports announced recently that it is putting its BGN racing team on indefinite hold and will focus entirely on engine development for other racing programs. Team Amick currently builds engines for three cars ranked in the top ten in driver points. Lyndon Amick, who has been the driver for the Team Amick #35 car, said it was a difficult decision for the team. “Our engine development program is very successful. Team Amick will now concentrate solely on building the best, most competitive engines in NASCAR for our customers,” Amick said. The team did not rule out the possibility of reactivating its racing program in the future. “At least for now, we will be focusing solely on our engine designs and our engine customers,” West said.(Amick PR)(9-28-2001)
  • Mr Goodcents to sponsor Mr Johnson: Mr. Goodcents Subs & Pastas is proud to announce their partnership with Herzog Motorsports as the associate sponsor of the #92 Excedrin Chevy and driver Jimmie Johnson. Headquartered in Kansas City, Mr. Goodcents is also the title sponsor of the BGN race, the Mr. Goodcents 300 at Kansas. The Herzog Motorsports #92 Excedrin Chevy will have Mr. Goodcents displayed on the rear quarter panels and deck-lid.(Eclipse Management PR)(9-27-2001)
  • #36 Special Scheme: The familiar red, white and blue paint scheme of Hank Parker’s #36 GNC Live Well Chevy will be replaced this weekend at Kansas by a special design promoting a new GNC (General Nutrition Centers) product for children. Parker’s car will be painted to match the packaging of GNC Live Well’s new children’s multivitamin, NASCAR Kids Multi. NASCAR Kids Multi is a fruit punch-flavored multivitamin that comes in three-dimensional, race car shapes. Each GNC race car shaped chewable tablet supplies 100% of the daily value for most essential nutrients, including vitamins A, D, and E, and iodine, zinc and copper to help safeguard growing children’s nutritional needs. As an added incentive, for a limited time GNC is offering a free special 1:64 diecast replica of Hank Parker’s No. 36 Chevrolet with each NASCAR Kids Multi purchase.(Keystone Marketing)(9-26-2001)
  • Truck Mag features drivers: The December issue of Truckin Magazine will have layouts on the following drivers trucks, Dale Earnhardt Jr, Kenny Wallace, Greg Biffle, Jack Sprague, and Randy LaJoie(9-26-2001)
  • Santerre in the #31? UPDATE: hearing that Andy Santerre will sub for injured Steve Park in the #31 Whelen Chevy at Kansas and some other BGN races the team plans to run in 2001 until Park can return(9-24-2001)
    UPDATE: Andy Santerre will drive the #31 Whelen Chevy for Ted Marsh Racing this weekend when the BGN makes its inaugural visit to Kansas Speedway. The Cherryfield, Maine native will fill-in for driver Steve Park who is recovering from head injuries suffered at Darlington on Sept. 1. Santerre and the Marsh Racing team won BGNN races in the Whelen Monte Carlo at Watkins Glen and New Hampshire last year. Marsh Racing has fielded a part-time Busch South team for Park the last two seasons. Marsh said the team expects to run Phoenix and Homestead this season with either Park or Santerre.(PR)(9-25-2001)
  • Penalties? UPDATED 2 Bickle’s Penalty: NASCAR will be busy again this week, doling out punishment as a result of an on-track incident in Friday night’s BGN race at Richmond. On Lap 185 of the 250-lap race, #43-Jay Sauter turned into rookie Greg Biffle’s #60 Ford as they exited Turn 4, sending both into the wall. Biffle got out of his car, walked over to Sauter’s, and threw a punch into the driver’s-side window. Both were told to report to the NASCAR hauler following the race. The two had tangled early in the race, and there were reports that members of Sauter’s team had expressed their desire for revenge on the track. Although NASCAR officials are not likely to announce any disciplinary action before Tuesday, sources said Saturday both drivers would receive harsh penalties.(That’s Racin’AND Reportedly, when the two drivers were called into the NASCAR transporter, BGN director John Darby angrily dismissed Sauter’s denial that the crash was intentional and told the young driver he could expect a suspension.(Gaston Gazette)(9-9-2001)
    UPDATE – Penalties: NASCAR officials announced today they have penalized NASCAR Busch Series drivers Greg Biffle and Jay Sauter for their actions during Friday night.s AutoLite Fram 250 at the Richmond International Raceway. Biffle, driver of the #60 team, was fined $15,000 and placed on probation until December 31, 2001.. Biffle also suffered a loss of 100 driver points. He was penalized under Section 12-4-A in the 2001 NASCAR Busch Series rulebook: “&actions deemed by NASCAR Officials as detrimental to stock car racing& fighting.” Sauter, driver of the #43 team, was fined $10,000 and placed on probation until December 31, 2001. Sauter was also penalized with a loss of 100 driver and owner points. He was penalized under Section 12-4-A: “&actions deemed by NASCAR Officials as detrimental to stock car racing& rough driving.” Gene Nead, Sauter.s crew chief, received a $5,000 fine and placed on probation until December 31, 2001. He was penalized under sections 12-4-A and 9-4-A: “& The crew chief assumes responsibility for the actions of his Driver, Car Owner and team members.”(NASCAR PR)(9-12-2001)
    UPDATE 2: On September 24, 2001, NASCAR heard and considered the appeal of Rich Bickle. The appeal concerned penalties issued by NASCAR to Rich Bickle following an incident during the BGN race at Darlington on September 1, 2001. It is the unanimous decision of the National Stock Car Racing Commission to amend the penalty to a fine of $2,500.00, and continue probation until December 31, 2001(NASCAR PR)(9-24-2001)
  • Spencer to honor Flight 93 at Lowes UPDATE Stewart to drive? When United Airlines flight 93 crashed September 11, 2001 in a strip mine in Shanksville, PA, Jimmy Spencer was devastated not only because the crash scene was near where Spencer grew-up in Pennsylvania, but of an heroic feat that was felt around the world. As Spencer was driving back home to North Carolina after being stranded at the Houston airport the day America was attacked, Spencer learned about how the passengers of Flight 93 overcame three hijackers and saved the life’s of thousands of people in our nation’s capitol. Spencer was deeply touched by the actions of the passengers who put their life’s on the line to prevent another major devastation. “Obviously, I’m very sad and angry about what happened last week”, said Spencer. “I know President Bush and our military are going to find the faceless cowards that did this, and I am so proud of what Americans and other countries are doing to help the families of all the victims.” Spencer said, “I want to focus on these forty-five families and try to help them financially. I am going to field my #5 Busch Series Chevrolet at the NASCAR race in Charlotte on October 6. This car will be a memorial to the forty-five passengers of Flight 93 and will proudly display the emblem of “The Presidential Medal of Freedom”, America’s highest civilian award. I am asking the NASCAR community and fans for their support and to generate as much money as we can for the families of Flight 93 and all the victims of September 11. This is my way to help the families and to pay homage and to give these forty-five American heroes a memorial shrine inside the NASCAR arena. Please send financial donations to: Spencer Motor Ventures, 160 Gasoline Alley, Mooresville, NC 28117, or donate online at Make checks payable to: American Red Cross. Jayski Note: It was recently announced that Ward Burton would run Charlotte/Lowes in the #5 Pillsbury, no word if Spencer will still try the #5 (the highest qulaifying car gets the number) or if he will use his old #12 or maybe #93(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE: hearing Tony Stewart will be the driver for Spencer’s effort and ALL the proceeds they raise will go to the relief effort(9-22-2001)
  • Green Wins at Dover: #10-Jeff Green won the race at Dover with #48-Kenny Wallace 2nd and 1-Jimmy Spencer 3rd. See That’s Racin’ for 200 race results(9-22-2001)
  • Newman wins pole at Dover: #02-Ryan Newman won the pole at Dover with a lap of 155.635mph. See That’s Racin’ for 200 lineup(9-21-2001)
  • Alexander at Dover: Blaise Alexander will drive the #08 PADE Auto Auction Chevrolet in the BGN race at Dover. Alexander will be making his second appearance in the #08 Carroll Racing Monte Carlo as he attempts to qualify for Saturday’s 200. The #08 PADE Auto Auction Chevy will be joining many of the other race teams who are adorning their cars with Old Glory. The Stars and Stripes of America will be flying high and fast atop the hood of Alexander’s ride. The Pennsylvania Auto Dealers’ Exchange (PADE) Auto Auction will be making their debut sponsorship of Alexander this weekend. Alexander helped promote the most recent auto auction on Wednesday September 19, by signing autographs for the many fans.(Sportsone PR)(9-20-2001)
  • Rudd to run Dover: Jason Rudd will be in the #8 Highline Performance Chevy in the BGN race at Dover. The deal came together on Sept 18th when he was asked to drive the car. Jason Rudd Motorsports will make the trek to Kansas City next week to compete in the BGN race there in their Graybar sponsored car(#77? or #85?)(
  • Truex Jr to run both Busch races at Dover: Martin Truex, Jr. of Mayetta, NJ will attempt to qualify two different NASCAR Busch Series cars at Dover on Friday, September 21 and Saturday, September 22. If he qualifies for the Friday race, Truex will compete in his regular Busch North Series, Sea Watch Chevy Monte Carlo. If he qualifies for the Saturday race it will be his first BGN event and he will be behind the wheel of the GE Sealants & Adhesives Chevy Monte Carlo. Truex is currently in sixth place in the Busch North Series point standings and there is little doubt that he will make the starting grid for that race. When it comes to a first race in a totally new series, qualifying could be a problem. When asked if he was a little apprehensive or if he thought there would be problems in jumping from the Busch North car to the Busch Grand National car, he said, ” I’m really looking forward to it. The biggest problem is going to be the speed, the South car is almost two seconds faster (per-lap) and the feel of the tires is a lot different. You can’t slide the car around like you can in the North car; that’s the biggest difference to me. I just have to tell myself what car I’m in and exactly what I can and can’t do every time I get in it and I think for now I’ll be OK.” Truex indicated he had a good feel for the Grand National car during his testing at Dover last week. This weekend at Dover will be one of the most important, if not the most important, in the 21 year old New Jersey driver’s career. It will be his first attempt at the next level of competition as he tries to move toward his final goal, Winston Cup. Add to this a chance to impress first time sponsor GE Sealants & Adhesives and you have a “full plate.”(Truex PR)(9-19-2001)
  • #10 Special Scheme at Dover: #10-Jeff Green will not be driving his Nesquik car at the Dover BGN race on September 22, 2001, instead, Green will showcase a brand new paint scheme, a Nestlé Toll House car, but the car will still be the eye-catching bright yellow that everyone is accustomed to. “Nestlé Toll House has been an associate sponsor of our racing program since the beginning of 2000,” said Green.. “This is the first time they have been the primary sponsor on the car so we certainly want to have a great showing for them.. The brand has been extremely supportive of our team and I’m glad that they are finally getting their turn in the spotlight. The #10 Car is decked out in the New Nestlé Toll House logo that is featured on our Nestlé Toll House Refrigerated Dough Products, and our Nestlé Toll House Morsel line.. Since 1939, Nestlé Toll House has been the gold standard for home baked Chocolate Chip Cookies. Nestlé Toll House is proud of its association with NASCAR, its fans and the #10 ppc racing Team.”(Tailwind Sports)(9-18-2001)
  • Burton to drive for Baldwin UPDATE now a sponsor: Bill Davis Racing #22 crew chief Tommy Baldwin Jr. will debut his new BGN team at the October race at Charlotte. Ward Burton will be behind the wheel(Sporting News)(8-28-2001)
    UPDATE: Tommy Baldwin Racing will have sponsorship for the upcoming BGN race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway on Saturday, October 6, 2001. The Pillsbury Company will sponsor Ward Burton and the #5 Chevy. The Pillsbury Company has partnered with Burton, who endorses Country Hearth, one of Pillsbury’s many products, for the past couple years. Although this is just a one-race deal, Tommy Baldwin Racing is hopeful that it will develop into sponsorship opportunities for a full-time driver for the 2002 BGN season. Baldwin will continue to serve as crew chief of the #22 Caterpillar Dodge driven by Ward Burton and owned by Bill Davis Racing. He and Eddie D’Hondt serve as co-owners of Tommy Baldwin Racing. D’Hondt, former general manager of both Bill Elliott Racing and Evernham Motorsports, runs the day-to-day team operations. Baldwin will call the shots at the racetrack, while his Cup pit crew will pit the car on Saturday.(Bill Davis Racing PR)(9-7-2001)
    UPDATE 2: see a few images of the car on my Paint Schemes Gallery (9-15-2001)
  • 2002 BGN Schedule: The 2002 Busch Series schedule was announced on Monday: Some notes – The 2002 BGN schedule has expanded by one date to 34 races, with new races at Daytona and Nashville Superspeedway. One race was dropped, Watkins Glen.’s Buzz reported a few weeks ago ” that the annual NASCAR Busch Series event at NHIS would more than likely be moved to be held in conjunction with one of the Winston Cup events in 2002″, this did NOT happen and will still be run on Mother’s Day weeend, May 11th, 2002. Indianapolis Raceway Park and the Milwaukee mile are still part of the BGM schedule, they were rumored to be losing races. See That’s Racin’ for the 2002 Busch Grand National series schedule(9-11-2001)
  • Spencer Back with Finch in 2002: Jimmy Spencer, who has won three BGN races this season for car owner James Finch (#1 Yellow Freight Chevy), said he would run a partial schedule with the team again next season(That’s Racin’)(9-9-2001)
  • Spencer wins caution filled Richmond race: #1-Jimmy Spencer completed a sweep of the BGN races this season at Richmond, taking a win in Friday night’s wild, caution-filled Autolite/Fram 250. Spencer, who won the May race at Richmond, beat fellow Winston Cup driver #17-Matt Kenseth by 1.345 seconds to claim his third series win of the season and 11th of his career. #37-Kevin Grubb finished third; #66-Geoffrey Bodine, fourth; and #21-Johnny Sauter, making his series debut, was fifth. See That’s Racin’ for Autolite Fram 250 results(9-7-2001)
  • Green Subs for Foyt: Larry Foyt has decided not to race his Busch Grand National (#14) car tonight. He’s still sore after crashing into Steve Park during the race at Darlington last weekend. Mark Green is replacing Foyt, who qualified 32nd, in tonight’s Autolite/FRAM 250(Richmond Times Dispatch)(9-7-2001)
  • Nemechek starts #200: #87-Joe Nemechek will make his 200th career BGN start at the Richmond in this Friday’s Autolite/Fram 250. It will be his first BGN race at the .75-mile oval since the spring of 1996 when he came away with a second-place finish. In the 12 seasons that Nemechek has competed in the BGN, he has collected 10 wins, 11 poles and 59 top-five finishes. Since making the step up to the Winston Cup Series in 1994, he has competed on a limited schedule basis, typically running between nine and 14 events in a season. Eight of his 10 wins have come in that time, including his victory at Richmond in the spring of 1994. Nemechek has had at least one win per season since 1997.(NEMCO Motorsports PR)(9-7-2001)
  • Green wins pole at Richmond: #10-Jeff Green won the pole at Richmond with a speed of 125.122mph with #02-Ryan Newman second at 124.809. See That’s Racin’ for Starting Lineup (9-6-2001)
  • #63 Sponsor Hunting for 2002: With Lance Snacks expected to leave, Jeff Hensley is looking for a sponsor for his Busch Series operation, the #63 Ford with driver Shane Hall. “We haven’t got the official word yet, but I’m assuming they probably will (leave), simply because the sport has really outgrown their budget,” Hensley said. “The expense of this series right now is astronomical. It’s sad that sponsors that have been here for such a long, long time aren’t able to enjoy the fruits of the sport’s growth.” Hensley expected to have the biggest budget of his racing career this season, but major associate sponsorship from Ocean Sun Travel fell through. As a result, he’s trying to run his team on primary backing of less than $1 million. Hensley’s wife, Debbie, has been handling much of the sponsorship search, and both say they’re working on four or five major packages. Until a check has cleared the bank, however, Hensley won’t be certain that a firm deal has been reached.(Winston Cup Scene – in part – need sub to read)(9-6-2001)
  • Scott Welliver Purchases Assets of Cicci-Welliver Racing UPDATE: Scott Welliver announced he and his cousin, Jeff Welliver, have purchased all assets of the Cicci-Welliver Racing organization, effective immediately. The buyout brings to an end the 10-year relationship between Scott Welliver and his former partner, Frank Cicci. The Wellivers will continue to operate three BGN teams under the banner of Welliver Racing. The #36 GNC Live Well Chevy, driven by Hank Parker Jr., the #66 Phillips 66 Chevy, driven by Geoffrey Bodine, and the #34 AFG Glass Chevy, driven by David Green, will continue to work from the teams’ facilities near Concord, N.C. The Wellivers, who head a nationally prominent construction firm in Upstate New York, are in the process of assembling a management team to handle the day-to-day operations of Welliver Racing. Scott Welliver will be on hand at this weekend’s NASCAR events at the Bristol Motor Speedway in Tennessee to personally oversee the three-car operation. At the time of the Wellivers’ purchase, the three-car team was the second-oldest NBS racing organization in operation. The teams had placed a driver in the top four in the final NBS championship standings each year since 1995(Keystone Marketing PR)(8-22-2001)
    UPDATE: Wayne Jesel, who opened an engine-building company at the beginning of the season with his sights set on owning a Busch Series team, has joined Scott and Jeff Welliver to form Welliver-Jesel Racing, a team that may eventually field a Dodge. The partnership came several days after Frank Cicci sold his interest in the Busch team originally known as Cicci-Welliver Racing. Jesel, who will oversee the team on a daily basis, has been working to bring Dodge into the Busch Series. He is currently waiting to see if Dodge’s racing plans will include the Busch circuit(Winston Cup Scene – in part – need sub to read)(9-6-2001)
  • Dodge in BGN at RIR UPDATE 2: Steven Christian, a short-track racer from Sugar Hill, is set to be the first driver to race a Dodge Intrepid in the BGN. Christian, who made his stock car debut at Dixie Speedway in 1986, will test an Intrepid at Greenville-Pickens Speedway today(Wed) and plans to enter the BGN race at Richmond on Sept. 7. Plans are to run as many as five races this season, and if all goes well, the full schedule next year. That would mean that Dodge, which walked away from NASCAR in the late 1970s but now fields Cup and Truck Series entries, is racing in all three of NASCAR’s top divisions. Christian will drive for veteran mechanic Jim Edwards, who will help Dodge find as many as four young drivers to enter the BGN next year and work their way to Winston Cup. Edwards said Christian, 31, got the ride because he’s young and experienced, and he has a sponsor, Lucas Oil. Christian is third in points in the Hooters ProCup Series, which uses cars almost identical to those on the Busch Series but with less powerful engines. He ran a few laps in the new #94 Dodge on Monday at Peach State Speedway and was impressed with its performance. “It was outstanding for a car that is brand new from one end to the other,” he said. “There were no leaks; the body didn’t rub anywhere, and the engine was real responsive.” Edwards said the Intrepid body has been approved by NASCAR, but the team is awaiting an Aug. 1 bulletin that will give them the OK on the engine.(AJC)(7-25-2001)
    UPDATE – BGN Dodge and Testing News: A sneak preview of Dodge’s first foray into the BGN will be on display at Richmond International Raceway on Tuesday and Wednesday. Steven Christian will be testing a Dodge on the .75-mile oval in preparation for the Autolite/FRAM 250 Busch race at RIR on Sept. 7. Michael Waltrip, Hal Goodson and Carl Long also will be testing Busch cars at RIR. The sessions are open to the public, and gates will be open from 8:00am to 5:00pm/et each day(Richmond Times Dispatch)(8-12-2001)
    UPDATE 2: Steven Christian, attempting to be the first Dodge to make a BGN race, failed to do so at Richmond, ran a speed of 121.294mph, which was 39th. 36 Team make the race by speed, then provisionals are used, Christian with a new team had none to use and missed the field(9-6-2001)
  • No #31 at Richmond: Marsh Racing has no plans on running the #31 Whelen at Richmond. with a sub driver. The team is rebuilding the car from Bristol, but will not have it ready in time. No determination about future BGN races have been made, the team was scheduled to race in Kansas City, Phoenix and Homestead. Also, the team is preparing the back-up car from Darlington for a run at Loudon in the Busch North race there on Sept. 15th. Paul Andrews son will be the driver(9-6-2001)
  • BGN and Head Restraints: Seventeen drivers used a HANS device during the South Carolina 200 Busch Series race at Darlington, while 15 used the restraint system known as the Hutchens device. Three used some other type of restraint, such as a neck collar. Eight drivers – Kevin Grubb, Stanton Barrett, Rich Bickle, Michael Dokken, Brad Teague, Jimmy Spencer, Bobby Hamilton Jr. and Andy Kirby – ran the race without any type of head-and-neck restraint system.(Winston Cup Scene – in part – need sub to read)(9-6-2001)
  • Brett Bodine to run Nephew in BGN: Josh Richeson, the 19-year-old son of veteran crew chief Donnie Richeson, is planning to run a few Busch Series races later this season in cars owned by his uncle, Brett Bodine. Bodine and the elder Richeson are hoping to put together sponsorship that would allow them to run Josh in the Busch Series full time next year. Along with Richmond, Richeson might also attempt to qualify for the Busch Series races at Charlotte, Memphis and Rockingham. He’ll also probably run ARCA races later this year at Talladega and Atlanta.(Winston Cup Scene – in part – need sub to read)(9-6-2001)
  • Lowes Testing UPDATE 2: In preparation for the Oct. 6 “Little Trees” 300 NASCAR Busch Series event at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, Busch Series competitors have been invited to participate in an open testing session at the 1.5-mile superspeedway on Tuesday, Sept. 4, and Wednesday, Sept. 5. from 9:00am to 4:00pm/et both days(LMS PR)
    UPDATE: Rain forced Lowe’s Motor Speedway officials to postpone today’s BGN testing session. The track will now be open for BGN testing from 9:00am to 4:00pm/et on both Wednesday and Thursday as teams prepare for the “Little Trees” 300 NASCAR BGN event on Saturday, Oct. 6. Cars for defending BGN champ #10-Jeff Green, #98-Elton Sawyer, #24-Ricky Hendrick, 38-Christian Elder and #35-Lyndon Amick were among those in the garage area when the decision was made to postpone the testing session(LMS PR)(9-4-2001)
    UPDATE 2: Following discussions with BGN Director John Darby and in order to better accommodate team schedules, Lowe’ s Motor Speedway officials have postponed open Busch Series testing. The two-day Busch Series testing session for the Oct. 6 “Little Trees” 300 has been rescheduled for Sept. 18-19 and will run in conjunction with NASCAR Winston Cup testing for the Oct. 7 UAW-GM Quality 500. The new schedule will see Busch Series teams on the track from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 18, with Winston Cup cars running from 4 to 10 p.m. The Busch teams will then alternate practice sessions with the NASCAR Winston Cup teams from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 19. After the decision to postpone the open test, several teams elected to rent the track for a private testing session. Among those making laps Wednesday morning were Michael Waltrip, Elton Sawyer, Ricky Hendrick, Justin Labonte, Christian Elder and Mike Swaim, Jr.(LMS PR)(9-6-2001)
  • Who Wins the Beer: As the 2001 NASCAR Busch Series season enters the final eight races, five drivers are still eligible to win a one-year supply of Busch Beer for their team in the Busch Top-10 promotion. The driver/team with the most top-10 finishes at the end of the season will win a year’s supply of Busch Beer, courtesy of series sponsor Anheuser-Busch. Kevin Harvick has grabbed 20 top-10 finishes so far, which is only one more than defending Busch Series champion Jeff Green. Jason Keller is currently third, followed by Greg Biffle and Elton Sawyer. Following 25 of 33 races, the five drivers still in the running for the award are:
    Driver…………………….Top 10s…….Percentage
    1. Kevin Harvick ………….20………….80%
    2. Jeff Green……………..19……………76%
    3. Jason Keller…………..17……………68%
    4. Greg Biffle……………..16…………..64%
    5. Elton Sawyer………….15…………..60% ( PR)(9-5-2001)
  • New #36 Crew Chief: hearing that crew chief Gary Cogswell is leaving #00 Buckshot Racing team for the #36 GNC Welliver Racing team and driver Hank Parker Jr(9-5-2001)
  • Cup drivers do double duty in the BGN race at Richmond:
    #26-Jimmy Spencer (#1 Chevy in BGN)
    #29-Kevin Harvick (#2 Chevy)
    #7-Mike Wallace (#4 Chevy)
    #99-Jeff Burton (#9 Ford)
    #14-Ron Hornaday (#11-Chevy)
    #17-Matt Kenseth(#17-Chevy)
    #1-Kenny Wallace (#48-Chevy)
    #33-Joe Nemechek (#87 Chevy)
    #15-Michael Waltrip (#99 Chevy)(9-5-2001)
  • McFarland at RIR: Mark McFarland with the support of long-time sponsor Popeyes Chicken & Biscuits, Washington D.C. Co-Op, announced he run in the BGN race at Richmond this weekend. It will be McFarland’s first BGN race of the 2001 season. Through a one race lease arrangement with Joe Gibbs Racing, McFarland will be driving the #20 Popeyes Pontiac under the direction of veteran crew chief Doug Richert. This will be McFarland’s third start in a Richmond BGN event, and his second in a Popeyes sponsored car. In the September 2000 event, McFarland qualified 15th but was sidelined by an accident late in the race. In 1998 the 23 year old notched a 29th place finish in the spring event at his home state track.(Co-Pilot/Motorsports Management PR)(9-5-2001)
  • Penalties: NASCAR officials announced today they have penalized four NASCAR Busch Series drivers for actions during and immediately following the South Carolina 200 at Darlington, S.C. on September 1. Drivers Kevin Harvick, Scott Wimmer, Chad Little, and Rich Bickle were all penalized for violating Section 12-4-A of the 2001 NASCAR Busch Series rule book: “actions detrimental to stock car racing or to NASCAR.” The following penalties have been issued:
    Kevin Harvick: Fined $10,000 and placed on probation until December 31, 2001, for being “involved in an altercation in another competitors garage area.”
    Chad Little: Fined $5,000 and placed on probation until December 31, 2001, for being “involved in an altercation with another competitor.”
    Rich Bickle: Fined $5,000 and placed on probation until December 31, 2001, for “intentionally hitting another competitor’s car during a caution.”
    Scott Wimmer: Fined $2,500 for “reckless driving after the conclusion of the race.”(NASCAR PR)(9-4-2001)
  • Burton Gains a BGN win at Darlington. #9-Jeff Burton wins the South Carolina 200 at Darlington. #98-Elton Sawyer was 2nd, #18-McLaughlin was 3rd, #02-Newman was 4th and 5th was #26-Hamilton Jr. Crazy ‘incident’ at the end of the race as #23-Scott Wimmer looked like he was going after another driver after the end of the race, #60-Greg Biffle happened to come down the track to go into pitroad and got hit hard in the back of the Grainger Ford. Wimmer apologized to Biffle for the incident. Quite a wild race. See for the Unofficial Results(9-1-2001)
  • BGN Accident UPDATE: during the caution laps after the rain delay in the Darlington BGN race, with one lap to go, #14-Larry Foyt was driving past the lead lap cars to the front of the pack (lap down cars can restart on the inside line), as Foyt was heading towards the front, #31-Steve Park’s car suddenly veered left right into Foyt’s path. Foyt t-boned Park hard in the drivers side door area, Park also hit the inside wall hard. Foyt’s front end was pushed back quite a bit. TNT didn’t show either driver get out of the car, but Foyt’s window net was not down (an indication a driver is ok) and the safety workers took 15-20 minutes to get Park out of the car. Also a blue tarp was erected around Park’s car(which was a little scary). Park has been taken by Helicopter to a local hospital in Florence, SC. The Good News: TNT talked to a Darlington Raceway offcial Kathy Mock, who said Park was alert and conscious when removed from the car, no other word if there are any injuries. TNT has reported that Larry Foyt is ok, just a little ‘woozy’ and is getting some IV’s and is under observation. reports “He was moving all four extremities,” Mock said, “and he was alert and talking.” Park’s status for the Southern 500 (or Happy Hour) is unknown at this time.(9-1-2001 – 2:40pm/et)
    UPDATE: TNT reported at 3:25pm/et that Steve Park has no serious injuries and will be held overnight for observation as he was unconscious when the safety workers reached the car. Kenny Wallace will drive the #1 Pennzoil Chevy in Winston Cup Happy Hour practice, no word on Park’s status for the Southern 500 on Sunday(9-1-2001 3:25pm/et), also see story at That’s Racin’
    For further reports, see my Cup Series Site(9-1-2001)