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September 2001 News Archives


(9-30-2001)

 

  • Gordon wins at Kansas: #24-Jeff Gordon won the Protection One 400 at Kansas Speedway, his 6th win of the 2001 season and 58th of his 285 race career. #02-Ryan Newman was 2nd. #28-Ricky Rudd was third abd lost 10 points to Gordon and is now 222 points behind Gordon in the race for the Winston Cup Championship with 8 races to go. #57-Derrike Cope was 24th in his first Cup race of 2001. See That’s Racin’ for Protection One 400 race results and Jayski.com for Driver Standings(9-30-2001)


    (9-29-2001)

  • Rudd changes seat belt manu: Ricky Rudd responded to increasing concerns over safety this week by changing the brand of seat belts he installs in his #28 Texaco Ford. After a briefing from NASCAR earlier in the week and viewing the belts from Jeremy Mayfield’s car, Rudd made the decision to replace the Simpson products in his car with Wheelen (actually it is Willans) belts.(Frontstretch)(9-29-2001)
  • Hills Bros leaving Donlavey UPDATE: Hills Brothers Coffee and Donlavey Racing are parting ways at the end of this Winston Cup season. Team owner Junie Donlavey stayed in Virginia to fulfill an obligation to visit a school and wasn’t at Kansas Speedway this weekend, but Donlavey does seem to be making plans to have sponsorship next season. Hills Brothers could be close to signing a deal with an established Winston Cup team. Driver Hut Stricklin and veteran crew chief Philippe Lopez, both employees of Hills Brothers’ parent company Sara Lee, plan to remain with the sponsor next season. Stricklin said the sponsor wanted Donlavey to move his team to the Charlotte, N.C., area, but Donlavey remained loyal to his hometown of Richmond. “I really have to commend Junie for being very loyal to the city of Richmond and to the state of Virginia because, let’s face it, this is big business and he didn’t turn his back on his homeland,” Stricklin said. “It’s a deal for me that I felt like I had to do what I had to do to survive.”(Richmond Times Dispatch)(9-29-2001)
    UPDATE: Petree and Nemechek could have different colors the rest of the season, if Petree can finish a deal with Hills Brothers Coffee, to replace Oakwood on the car the last two months of the season(Winston Salem Journal)(9-29-2001)
    AND Phillipe Lopez, team manager of Donlavey’s #90 and of the Sara Lee NASCAR endeavor, confirmed Friday that Hills likely will move up a step or two. “They’re talking to every team without a sponsor,” Lopez said. “They have a lot of meetings scheduled over the next two weeks. After that, I don’t know what they’re doing. They may narrow it down to two or three for call-back meetings.” The catch is that Sara Lee apparently intends to package driver Stricklin with the deal, although that is not beyond negotiation. “That’s what they’d like to do,” Lopez said(SpeedVision)(9-29-2001)
  • Nemechek on the move? Joe Nemechek says “There are going to be a lot more people changing teams than you think. I didn’t think there would be a lot of changing this season, but over the last two weeks I’ve learned a lot of changes are coming.” Nemechek could be one of them. He could be back in Andy Petree’s #33 ride next season, but now it appears he will be going elsewhere: “I should have something firm within the next week,” Nemechek says. Petree and Nemechek could have different colors the rest of the season, if Petree can finish a deal with Hills Brothers Coffee, to replace Oakwood on the car the last two months of the season. Nemechek has been rumored to be talking with Kyle Petty about a ride in one of Petty Enterprises cars next season. John Andretti, currently in #43, has been rumored to be in talks with other car owners, including Rick Hendrick(Winston Salem Journal)(9-29-2001)
    AND Nemechek is still a candidate for Richard Childress’s #31 (which everyone has marked for Robby Gordon) and for Larry McClure’s #4 (labeled for Mike Skinner)(SpeedVision)(9-29-2001)
  • NHIS in Nov Not NBC’s Choice? UPDATE: Sources say it was not NBC’s decision that prompted NASCAR to reschedule New Hampshire date to the Friday following Thanksgiving. Apparently someone in the NASCAR hierarchy has a daughter getting married that Saturday(Sporting News)(9-28-2001)
    UPDATE: There is confirmation that the stepdaughter of NASCAR president Mike Helton has a wedding planned for Saturday, Nov. 24, Thanksgiving weekend and one of the one or two weekends off NASCAR allows each year.(SpeedVision)(9-29-2001)
    AND: According to one television industry source, NBC officials don’t want the blame for extending the season to the week of Thanksgiving, and the network is willing to drop the Loudon race if NASCAR gives the OK and returns the $30 million the network has already paid for the telecast. TV ad sales have been off this season across the board, and even with the popularity of Winston Cup racing, the networks aren’t breaking even this year(Winston Salem Journal)(9-29-2001)
  • No more #96 after Kansas: the #96 PPI Motorsports/McDonald’s team and driver Andy Houston are running their last race together at Kansas this week. McDonald’s will be a major assoc sponsor on the #32 PPI Motorsports Ford the rest of the season (and has been since Indy in Aug) and in 2002. Word is the team will not exist in 2002 unless a sponsor can be found(9-29-2001)
  • #29 Crew Chief News: Todd Berrier, Kevin Harvick’s BGN crew chief, will crew chief the #29 Goodwrench Chevy at Kansas. Regular crew chief Kevin Hamilin is in Michigan as his Mother-in-Law passed away, thoughts and condelences go out to Hamilin and his family(9-29-2001)
  • #14 Changes? The #14 Ron Hornaday-A. J. Foyt team, which failed to qualify for Kansas, is apparently headed for another shakeup(Winston Salem Journal)(9-29-2001)
  • Sacks News: Former Stafford Motor Speedway Modified champion and winner in Cup and BGN, Greg Sacks will once again be behind the wheel of the T. S. Haulers #13 NASCAR modified for car owner Ed Partridge of Calverton L.I. NY at the Stafford Motor Speedway In CT. Greg will be teaming with former Stafford and Thompson Speedway Modified Champion Bo Gunning of Connecticut in an effort to bring T. S. Haulers its first FMS Tour Victory. The entire TS Motorsports team is honored to be able to work with a veteran driver such as Greg Sacks at Stafford and possibly for the remaining races on the FMS Tour Schedule this season. This is a great opportunity for T. S. Haulers race team, as Sacks is hard at work trying to secure a ride for 2002 in the Cup or BGN Series, and a few races in November this year may be on his schedule. In the meantime, Sacks will travel up from Florida and once again race in front of his Northeast Fans in NASCAR Featherlite Modified Series(TS Haulers Racing)(9-29-2001)


    (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)
  • Expansion: From 1972 to 1987, only one new track was added to the Winston Cup schedule, the Pocono Raceway in 1974. Since 1987, 10 tracks have been added, starting with Phoenix on Nov. 6, 1988. The Sears Point road course replaced Riverside in 1989, and New Hampshire was added in 1993(FoxSports)(9-28-2001)
  • Health Tune-Up for Life: Racing fans and participants can visit the Pfizer’s Men’s Health Tune-Up for Life mobile unit for free cholesterol, blood sugar, blood pressure and erectile dysfunction screenings during race weekend at Kansas Speedway. The 50-foot mobile unit will be outside the track behind the south end of the grandstands near Gate A. It will be open 8 a.m.-5 p.m. today and Saturday, and 8 a.m. to noon Sunday. Health care professionals and educational materials will be available for consultations on common health conditions and to answer questions. Pfizer introduced the mobile unit at Winston Cup races last season, and more than 20,000 visitors were screened during February-November 2000.(Kansas City Star)(9-28-2001)


    (9-27-2001)

  • Rudd, Wallace meet with NASCAR: Rusty Wallace and Ricky Rudd, who have had on-track incidents in three of past four races, met with NASCAR officials Thursday to discuss their “feud.” Both drivers said they consider the incidents, which included a confrontation in the garage last weekend at Dover, Del., to be over.(That’s Racin’)(9-27-2001)
  • Modifications for Seat Belts: NASCAR announced today the manufacturer’s label on seat belts must not be located under the adjusting mechanism when the driver is buckled into the seat and has tightened the seat belts and shoulder harness. If the label is under the adjusting mechanism, the label must be removed or relocated in a manner that does not affect the integrity of the belt material. The date of the manufacture must remain visible on the belts at all times. This modification goes into effect immediately for NASCAR.s Winston Cup Series, Busch Series, Craftsman Truck Series and NASCAR Touring Series.(NASCAR PR)(9-27-2001)
  • Some more driver rumors UPDATE Pressley to the #4? or is it Skinner?: Mike Skinner to the #77 Jasper Engines Ford with current driver, Robert Pressley possibly headed to the #4 Morgan McClure Kodak Chevy. Skinner is also rumored to the #4 team and the #33 Andy Petree Racing team if a sponsor is found(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE: and also hearing Robert Pressley as a stong candidate to the #4 Kodak Chevy for 2002 as well as Skinner(9-23-2001)
    UPDATE: Larry McClure hopes to be able to strike a deal with [Mike] Skinner that will put the veteran behind the wheel of his Chevrolets in 2002. “That’s fair,” McClure said Sept. 21 when asked if Skinner was his leading candidate. “We’d like to get something done here directly. (But) if you’ve got a deal done, it would take you two weeks to get it all done.”(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(9-27-2001)
  • #33 Sponsor Update: Although Andy Petree, owner of the #33 and #55 Chevy’s, has landed a sponsor for the #55 car (Schneider Electric) for the next two seasons, Petree was still busy working the phones in his continuing search for a sponsor for the #33 Chevy (currently driven by Joe Nemechek and sponsored by Oakwood Homes) car next season. Petree said the Winston Cup going into a new market area like Kansas City should help him in his search. Oakwood Mobile Homes has been helping with the sponsor search and has even agreed to step back and allow Petree’s new sponsor to take over immediately once all the papers and deals are confirmed.(Hendersonville Times-News)(9-27-2001)
  • Sauer looking to stay in Cup? UPDATE: hearing C. F. Sauer Company, the current sponsor of the #27 Eel River Racing team, is looking to stay as a Cup sponsor in 2002, but with another team. Sauer currently has Duke’s Mayo on the #27 Pontiac and other assorted products(9-26-2001)
    UPDATE: hearing that Sauer reps met with the #90 team over the weekend at Dover, Sauer is from Richmond, VA where the #90 Donlavey Racing is based. Hut Stricklin currently is the driver(9-27-2001)
  • Online Animated Series: The Kellys,” an animated series about a stock-car racing family, will debuted Wednesday, Sept 26th exclusively on nascar.com. The series will feature “guest appearances” by top professional drivers and television, film and music celebrities. Following Wednesday’s debut, a new 3-minute episode will air weekly on Fridays beginning Sept. 28 through Nov. 16th.(9-27-2001)
  • Jr hires sister: Dale Earnhardt Jr. hired his sister, Kelley, recently to be the personal business manager of his company – JR Motorsports. Kelley, a graduate of UNC Charlotte, was formerly an executive with Action Performance(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(9-27-2001)


    (9-26-2001)

  • Checking Temps at RIR UPDATE: Mark Martin and Matt Kenseth will have new additions to their respective pit crews next weekend at Richmond. The additional pit workers will concentrate on how the drivers replace the fluids they lose during a race, as well as the cars’ onboard temperatures. Scientists from the Gatorade Sports Science Institute will condict a pilot study on Martin and Kenseth to determine sweat loss, cardiobascular responses and heat stress in drivers during a NASCAR race. During an average race, cockpit temperatures can climb to 140 degrees, putting drivers at risk for dehydration and heat illness. The race-day test will help provide drivers with fluid replacement and heat illness prevention recommendations.(That’s Racin’)(9-3-2001)
    UPDATE: #6-Mark Martin, and #17-Matt Kenseth, were the subjects of a hydration study that was conducted at the Chevy Monte Carlo 400 in Richmond. Scientists from the Gatorade Sports Science Institute (GSSI) monitored Martin and Kenseth throughout the 400-lap, three-hour and 13-minute event to determine how well NASCAR drivers replace the fluids they lose through sweat during a race. In the grueling heat of a race, cockpit temperatures can often soar well beyond 115 degrees, placing drivers at risk for dehydration, heat illness and impaired performance. Martin’s estimated total sweat loss during the race was 4.5 liters (153 ounces), nearly equivalent to 10 lbs. of bodyweight. However, Martin replaced 78% of his total sweat loss by drinking 3.52 liters (119 ounces) of fluid. Martin still experienced a final bodyweight loss of more than 2 lbs., and a post-race urine sample indicated significant dehydration even with this modest 2-lb. fluid deficit. Kenseth also completed the race, but was off the track and out of his car for nearly an hour due to a mid-race crash. Because he spent less time exposed to intensive cockpit temperatures, Kenseth’s fluid loss was less dramatic than Martin’s. According to GSSI, Kenseth lost 2.1 liters (70 ounces) of sweat. Yet, by drinking 1.66 liters (56 ounces) of fluid during the race, Kenseth was able to replace 81% of the fluid he lost, leaving him fairly well hydrated. Overall, both Martin and Kenseth experienced levels of fluid loss similar to those experienced by other endurance and team sport competitors, such as marathoners and football players. But they did a better job of replacing fluids than several athletes GSSI has studied from these sports. For more information about sports nutrition and exercise science pertaining to The Gatorade Company, visit the Gatorade Sports Science Institute web site at www.gssiweb.com or gatorade.com.(Roush Racing PR)(9-26-2001)
  • Sadler hires Long: Hermie Sadler announced today the addition of veteran crew chief Jim Long to the stable of his #13 Chevrolet. Long began at Dover this past weekend as a consultant to Sadler, who after Dover plans to run three additional Winston Cup events: Martinsville, Homestead, and Atlanta. Long had an immediate impact for Sadler as his team and Sadler qualified 32nd and finished 27th. Long will continue his role as consultant with Sadler while exploring his options for 2002(Sadler Enterprises PR)(9-26-2001)
  • #68 Hires, Crew Chief, Team Mgr and Marketing: TWC Motorsport has hired Noel Eggert as thier Team Manager for the 2002 season. Eggert has spent the last eight years in NASCAR after fielding cars in the World of Outlaws Series. Walter Giles has been named Crew Chief for the teams #68 Chevy’s. Giles’ 26 -year racing career is filled with championship experience. As a driver, he won over 200 races and 7 championships in his native Australia with cars built exclusively by him. For the past five years, Giles has been involved with NASCAR Winston Cup teams in positions from Team Manager/ Crew Chief to head of Research and Development. The team has made additions to the Marketing Department. NASCAR Winston Cup veteran George Stephens has joined the team as Marketing Director. George’s knowledge of marketing and sponsorship will be critical to the team as they move forward with their marketing plans. Mark Fowler will be the Marketing Assistant and will be working with Stephens.(more info at their website: www.twcmotorsport.com)(9-26-2001)
  • Testing at Martinsville: Several teams are scheduled to test at Martinsville Speedway next week. #2-Rusty Wallace will test Monday and Tuesday. #36-Ken Schrader, #20-Tony Stewart, #18-Bobby Labonte, #13-Hermie Sadler, #55-Bobby Hamilton, #29-Kevin Harvick and #32-Ricky Craven are expected to test Tuesday along with Wallace. All of them, except Wallace, will continue their two-day test on Wednesday.(Racing Extra)(9-26-2001)
  • Dover TV Ratings: Last weekend, Winston Cup took on the NFL regular season for the first time since the consolidated NASCAR television contract was signed. The results – a 4.1 overnight rating on NBC Sports with an 8 share(SpeedVision)(9-26-2001)
  • Another Hendrick team? UPDATE ARCA: hearing from some readers who have recently visited Hendrick Motorsports that there is a #71 GMAC Chevy in the shop with Ricky Hendrick listed above the door as the driver, no idea if this is an ARCA, BGN or Cup car….or something else? the #71 is currently used by other drivers in each of those divisions(9-26-2001)
    UPDATE: the #71 is an ARCA car that Ricky Hendrick has run in the past and will supposedly run at Talladega in Oct. It is not a Cup team nor anything to do with Dave Marcis(who runs the #71 in Cup)(9-26-2001)
  • Fan Sponsored Team: #85 Cup driver, Carl Long, is part of an new team where race fans are invited to become private sponsors of Long’s Racing Efforts in NASCAR Busch and Winston Cup Events. A Basic $50.00 per Year Sponsorship Includes: Race Reports; A Certificate Of Sponsorship; Discounts on team Merchandise; An Autographed Carl Long Souvenir Card; and Detailed Quarterly Reports of Team News and Activity. For more info see my #85 Team News and Links page.(in no way is Jayski endorsing this, but posting it as information on a Cup team), there is also another fan based team, Fanz Enterprises which sells stock for a possible future Cup team, in on that can be found on my New/Rumored Teams page(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)


    (9-25-2001)

  • Skinner to have Surgery UPDATE 4 Gordon in NOW: Mike Skinner: “I’m going to have surgery on my left knee sometime later in the season. The doctors are going to replace my ACL and repair my MCL but I don’t know just yet when we’re going to do it. I’ve got to sit down with Richard and work that out. I need to do it soon so I have time to do the rehab and be 100-percent when the next season rolls around. I’ve definitely decided to have knee surgery so now I’ve got to get it scheduled and find a time to say good-bye to Richard and the guys. Finding a good time to say good-bye to a man’s race team is a hard time to find. I’ve still got some thinking to do about it.”(RCR Racing)(9-20-2001)
    UPDATE: it was reported on Friday’s FSN’s Totally NASCAR that Skinner may leave the #31 RCR team early to get the sugery done as it would take 4-6 months to heal and that he hopes to make an announcement on his 2002 plans very soon and wants to be 100% for his new team when the 2002 Daytona 500 rolls around in February. Rumors have Skinner in either the #4-Kodak Chevy, the #33-APR Chevy or the #77 Jasper Motorsports Ford in 2002(9-22-2001)
    UPDATE 2: while it’s not yet official, but Robby Gordon is already busy cutting commercials as new driver for Richard Childress’ Cingular-sponsored team next season. And Gordon could be back in Childress’ Chevy within the next few weeks, possibly by Charlotte, depending on when or if Mike Skinner decides to step out for extensive knee surgery. “It would be very easy to put Robby in the car (if Skinner goes into the hospital), and that would be the most logical choice, since we already have some time with him,” team manager David Smith said. “Mike has discussed it (surgery) with us, and we’ll just work around it if it comes up.”(Winston Salem Journal) – also hearing the strongest rumor for Skinner in 2002? the #4 Kodak Chevy ride and the #77 ride and Skinner are making rounds(9-23-2001)
    UPDATE 3: Robby Gordon might be in the No. 31 by Oct. 14 at Martinsville(Sporting News)(9-24-2001)
    UPDATE 4: Robby Gordon will drive the #31 Lowe’s Home Improvement Warehouse Chevy for the remainder of the Cup Series season to allow Mike Skinner the opportunity to have surgery on his injured left knee. The move brings to a conclusion Skinner’s seven-season tenure as a driver for Richard Childress Racing (RCR). Reconstructive surgery has been scheduled for Oct. 2 as a result of Skinner aggravating the injury in a crash at Richmond. Gordon will also pilot the #21 Rockwell Automation/Brant Motorsports Chevrolet for RCR in the BGN at Kansas and Lowe’s Motor Speedway.(RCR Racing PR), no announcement was made on the 2002 driver of the #31 car which will have Cingular as it’s sponsor in 2002(9-25-2001)
  • Mayfield Shook Up but OK UPDATE 2 seat belt torn: #12-Jeremy Mayfield wrecked in Turn 1 on Lap 55 at Dover and was taken by ambulance to nearby Bay Health Medical Center for a precautionary CT scan. That came out negative and Mayfield was released after being examined. The driver apparently suffered some bruising and a chipped tooth. Mayfield walked to the ambulance under his own power before being taken from the track. He did, however, lose consciousness for a short amount of time following the impact.(That’s Racin’)(9-23-2001)
    UPDATE: Mayfield also does NOT have a concussion and hearing NASCAR took the seat belts from the #12 car to examine them, they were not broken but had stretched some, no word on the manufacturer(9-24-2001)
    UPDATE 2: NASCAR officials discovered a partially-torn seat belt in the #12 car driven by Jeremy Mayfield following his accident in Sunday’s MBNA Cal Ripken, Jr. 400 at Dover. Mayfield received only minor injuries in the accident. The partially-torn left lap belt was found by officials during the standard post-accident review of the car. The lap belt apparently “dumped” at some point during the accident. The act of dumping occurs when the seat belt webbing is pulled or moved significantly to one side of the metal adjustment device through which the webbing is threaded. NASCAR has outside experts reviewing the damaged belt and plans to offer recommendations to its teams prior to this coming weekend.s activities(NASCAR PR), the belt was made by Simpson Performance Products. Also, Bill Simpson was interviewed by John Kernan on ESPN’s RPM 2 Night and was pretty upset about the way NASCAR is handling it and says the belt did it’s job and that NASCAR should look into the cars as the problem not the seat belts(see report on ESPN(9-24-2001)
    AND more Simpson: Safety guru Bill Simpson wryly welcomed Monday’s NASCAR announcement that officials had found a “partially torn” Simpson lap belt in Jeremy Mayfield’s car following his crash at Dover. “They can put on all the dog-and-pony shows they want,” Simpson said. “I hope they just keep going with it. It’s just more food for the lawsuit.” Simpson said he “absolutely positively” plans to sue NASCAR over its various announcements about Simpson belts, dating to the week after Dale Earnhardt was killed in the Feb. 18 Daytona 500. See full story at the Orlando Sentiel: Seat-belt flap arises anew(9-25-2001)
  • Coolers at Lowes UPDATE 3: Humpy Wheeler, president of the Lowe’s Motor Speedway, says no decision has been made on whether coolers would be allowed at the track, which has more than 160,000 seats. “We’ll stay on top of it, and we’ll make people feel very safe and secure,” Wheeler said. “We have a lot of security here that a lot of people don’t know about.”(Roanoke Times)(9-21-2001)
    UPDATE: Dover’s ban on coolers is a track decision, said Eddie Gossage, the executive vice president and general manager of Texas Motor Speedway. That order did not come down from NASCAR. “We have no plans to change our cooler policy,” said Gossage, anticipating the rescheduled NASCAR Truck series Silverado 350 on Oct. 5 and Indy Racing League’s Chevy 500 on Oct. 6. “We do not want to prohibit coolers. The only reason we would even consider it is if some major U.S. agency came forward and really pushed us on it.”(That’s Racin’)(9-22-2001)
    UPDATE – LMS – Coolers – Yes: LMS (Lowes Motor Speeway) will use a similar security protocol [as ISC tracks and Dover] for its race on Oct. 7. LMS president H.A. “Humpy” Wheeler will buck the trend and allow coolers into the facility that weekend. “We’re still planning to allow race fans to bring coolers in,” said LMS spokesman Jerry Gappens. “Humpy made that decision after he talked to folks at the FBI and ATF, the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agency here in North Carolina. We inspect every cooler and bag that is brought through the gates because we don’t allow glass bottles and of course any firearms or weapons. That’s our standard operating procedure.” Gappens warns that the cooler policy is subject to change depending on national developments.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(9-23-2001)
    UPDATE 2: As of today, Lowe’s Motor Speedway officials intend to allow fans attending UAW-GM Quality 500 Week activities Oct. 4-7 to bring coolers into the speedway. Following the track’s standard operating procedure, security personnel will search all items, including coolers. Lowe’s Motor Speedway policy limits coolers to a maximum of 14 inches and no glass bottles or containers are permitted. In addition, no umbrellas are allowed in the grandstands.(LMS PR)(9-25-2001)
  • Morgan-McClure crewman sick: Lonnie Hill, a full time employee of the #4 Morgan-McClure team since 1994, was diagnosed last week with a lung disease called Bullae. Bullae are blisters on the lungs that can burst at any time, especially under pressure in an airplane or underwater. Once the blister burst, holes are left in the lungs that cause them not to function properly. Bullae can be caused from smoking, flying frequently, genetics or working around harsh chemicals for long periods of time. Hill will undergo an intense surgery on his lung, often said to be worse than open-heart, following the holidays. Recovery could take 6 months or longer. The motor man, mechanic, and raceday catch-can crew member will travel to a limited number of races that are within driving distance for the remainder of this season. Please keep Lonnie, his wife Diana (also an employee of Morgan-McClure since 1997) and his children, Bradley and Brandi, in your thoughts and prayers as they go through this trying time.(Morgan-McClure PR)(9-25-2001)
  • NASCAR Radio UPDATE: NASCAR Radio, one channel of the new 100-channel pay-to-hear satellite system coming on line this fall, is an interesting experiment in several aspects. Not only will it be interesting to listen to Tim Farley, the channel’s programming boss, trying to come up with 24 hours of NASCAR sports news every day, but also to follow the cross-marketing, cross-promotional links with some of the other 99 channels. The whole operation is housed in a spiffy new building in Washington, with 400 people working out of 82 digital studios, all making for strange and interesting bedfellows: Andréa Bocelli, meet Dale Earnhardt Jr. “The rebirth of radio,” is the slogan behind the two new satellite systems, XM Radio and Sirius. NASCAR has signed on with XM, which is partly owned by General Motors, which has the new radios in this year’s Cadillacs and will have the new radios in more models next year, with a tiny shark fin antenna the size of a cell-phone link. The official launch of XM, about eight years in the works, was set for Sept. 12 but has been postponed until Tuesday, when it will debut in Dallas, San Diego and other points in the Southwest. It will roll out nationally in the coming weeks, dependent more on the availability of new radios and adapters than anything else. There will be 70 music channels and 30 talk channels, including NASCAR, and one selling pitch is digital-sound quality. Other talk channels include XM News, USAToday, BBC, Fox, ESPN, Sporting News, CSPAN, MTV, VH1, BET and Bloomberg. Most channels will be commercial free, in part because the service costs $10 a month. The NASCAR angle is being pitched hard. XM will have a hauler and hot-air balloon at Dover Downs this weekend to entice Winston Cup fans to buy into the package. The channel will carry all Winston Cup, Busch events and truck races, all qualifying from start to finish, all MRN and PRN broadcasts, Benny Parsons’ FastTalk, Eli Gold’s NASCAR Live, replays of classic races, and a number of in-house produced shows. There will also be a morning NASCAR News Now, a news magazine show. Farley, from Richmond’s WRVA, will be the host for a NASCAR talk show every day, 4-7 p.m.(Winston Salem Journal), TWO NOTES: the XM Radio site address is www.xmradio.com and recently Jayski did an interview for the channel (9-20-2001)
    UPDATE: NASCAR Radio, the first 24-hour radio station dedicated to a single sport, will debut on September 25 on XM Satellite Radio, the first commercial satellite radio service in the United States. Channel 144 on XM will be home to NASCAR Radio, which will feature coast-to-coast live racing coverage, news, interviews, lifestyle shows, classic races and original programming showcasing NASCAR. NASCAR Radio will be on the air 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week, and is the only channel on the XM line-up dedicated to one sport.(NASCAR PR), more info at www.xmradio.com(9-25-2001)
  • Black Boxes at Dover UPDATE: NASCAR is conducting its first test of accident-data recorders in cars racing this weekend at Dover Downs, Winston Cup Series director Gary Nelson said Friday. #92-Jimmie Johnson and #57-Jason Keller are running them in their BGN cars and #18-Bobby Labonte and #24-Jeff Gordon will drive with them in their Winston Cup cars. Nelson said NASCAR wants to know if the self-contained boxes, which will be powered by regular flashlight-style batteries, can withstand the heat generated inside Cup cars and whether they will be durable enough to hold up to a weekend’s schedule of practice, qualifying and a 400-mile race on Sunday. Nelson said NASCAR wants to have the recorders in all Winston Cup, Grand National and Truck series race vehicles by next February at Daytona(That’s Racin’AND The boxes, which are powered by batteries, have been mounted near the drivers on the inside left frame. Winston Cup Director Gary Nelson said NASCAR is testing the recorders’ durability and their resistance to heat.(Richmond Times Dispatch)(9-22-2001)
    UPDATE: it’s been reported that seven(7) Cup cars had black boxes, some of difference versions, didn’t say which cars(9-25-2001)


    (9-24-2001)

  • Jarrett comments on NH in Nov UPDATE 2 Helton comments: Dale Jarrett implored NASCAR to rethink its decision to race in New Hampshire on Nov. 23. “As good a tire as Goodyear makes, there’s no way we can make that hard tire hook up on that track in that kind of cold weather,” Jarrett said. He also said he did not want to be away from home on Thanksgiving, calling it an important respite and a holiday that was meaningful to him. He proposed instead, that the New Hampshire race be held midweek between the events at Lowe’s Motor Speedway on Oct. 7 and Martinsville, Va., on Oct. 14. “Is there anyone who wants to go up there on Nov. 23?” he asked.(Gaston Gazette)(9-22-2001)
    UPDATE: NASCAR vice president for communications Jim Hunter said that NASCAR has no plans to reconsider its decision to run the New Hampshire 300, postponed from last weekend, on Nov. 23 – the day after Thanksgiving. “As much as I hate to miss Thanksgiving with my family, I plan to be in New Hampshire,” Hunter said. “We made that decision after thinking things through. We thought it was the best overall decision knowing that a lot of people are going to be inconvenienced.” Hunter said NASCAR would continue to look at its scheduling options and how it might be able to avoid a similar problem in the future. The final 20 races of the 2002 season, however, are scheduled for 20 consecutive weekends just as they were this year.(That’s Racin’)(9-22-2001)
    AND see a column at the Winston Salem Journal: NASCAR Mutiny? – Winston Cup teams are rebelling against new date for Loudon race and Practice? Winston Cup series director Gary Nelson he expects teams competing in the one-day season finale Nov. 23 at New Hampshire will be allowed some practice time earlier that morning. Several drivers have been critical of NASCAR’s decision to hold the race on Thanksgiving weekend, after postponing the event last weekend following terrorist attacks Sept. 11 in New York City and Washington(That’s Racin’)(9-23-2001)
    UPDATE 2: NASCAR President Mike Helton, growing tired of increasing criticism from race team members regarding the rescheduled New Hampshire race now planned for Thanksgiving weekend, tried to put the talk to rest during Sunday’s prerace driver and crew chief meeting. “We will be racing on Friday, Nov. 23 in New Hampshire,” Helton said sternly. “We had to make a decision and we are sticking to it.”(That’s Racin’)(9-24-2001)
  • Penske News? hearing Penske is talking with Marty Gaunt, former GM of the team now with the #84 Cup and #98 BGN Kranefuss teams, about coming back to the #12 team in some capacity(9-24-2001)
  • Melling and Petty to work together? According to #92 Melling Racing driver Stacy Compton, his search outside the Melling camp will intensify if no sponsor is garnered within the next few weeks. He has discussed future opportunities with at least four Winston Cup teams, and a few Busch Series teams as well. Compton wants to stay put. Compton said that Melling is in discussion with Petty Enterprises about a possible future partnership, somewhat similar to that of the Wood Brothers’ relationship with Roush Racing. “The Pettys have been great to work with. I’ve really been happy with the progress we’ve made with those guys,” Compton said. “They’ve just bent over backwards to work with us. We work together really good. We’re trying to align ourselves with another team. It’s tough to do that, because it’s tough to find a team that’s willing to work with you. The Pettys have been so great. I’m awful excited about what we’re building with them. Mark and Kyle have worked some things out and are working good together.”(NASCAR.com)(9-24-2001)
  • No Changes at Talladega? UPDATE yes but minor: NASCAR officials are telling some teams that there will be no rules changes for next month’s Talladega 500, but Ford teams and Pontiac teams say they haven’t been told a thing yet(Winston Salem Journal)(9-22-2001)
    UPDATE: The Winston Cup series will make no “significant” changes to its current aerodynamic package for the season’s final restrictor-plate race, the Oct. 21 race at Talladega. NASCAR sources said Sunday if any changes are made at all, they wouild be minor spoiler or air-dam alterations to the Ford Taurus to make the car more in line in performance with the Pontiacs, Chevrolets and Dodges.(That’s Racin’)(9-24-2001)
  • Sad News: A Pennsylvania race car driver was killed late Saturday night in a crash at the Delmar International Speedway, police said Sunday. During the last race of the night, Charles S. Sennott, 46, of Gilbertsville, Pa., was involved in an eight-car pileup, Delaware State Police said. When debris was removed, Sennott was found unresponsive in his car. Medical response teams at the track were unable to revive him, and he was pronounced dead at the scene. Sennott was wearing all the safety equipment required for racing at the track, police said. The medical examiner’s office will determine the exact cause of death(USA Today)(9-24-2001)

 


(9-23-2001)

 

  • Little E wins at Dover: #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr won the MBNA Cal Ripken Jr 400 at Dover. Great scene with Dale Jr carrying a large USA Flag around the track on his backwards victory lap. 2nd place finisher was #25-Jerry Nadeau who started 41st using a provisional. #28-Ricky Rudd was 3rd and #24-Jeff Gordon was 4th, Gordon lost 10 points to Rudd, but still leads the Winston Cup Championship by 212 points, with #20-Stewart 3rd, 412 points behind. See That’s Racin’ for Unofficial Results and Driver Standings and a That’s Racin’: Rudd spins, Earnhardt Jr. wins(9-23-2001)
  • Cope in the #57 UPDATE: Derrike Cope tested at Kansas Speedway last week on Wednesday and Thursday and drove the #57 CLR Ford. This is a Winston Cup team that is owned by Ted Campbell and sponsored by CLR cleaning products. Cope said the test went very well and he was told that they will go to the Kansas race as well as the Charlotte race. Cope and the team will test Charlotte this week on Tuesday and Wednesday(Sept 18-19). Cope said, “I am very excited about the opportunity. They will have Robert Yates engines. The Crew Chief is Joey Cudmore and the entire crew are great guys. We had a good chance to get to know each other and seemed to get along great. Our speeds we felt were good at Kansas, but worked mostly on race set-up.”(Derrike Cope Site). It was announced a few weeks ago that Kenny Wallace would drive the #57 CLR Ford at Kansas City, Charlotte, and Homestead but Wallace is subbing in the #1 for injured Steve Park(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE: Derrike Cope will attempt to make the inaugural Winston Cup Kansas race in the #57 CLR Ford Taurus this week. Cope and his team drove more than 15 hours each way from Charlotte to test at Kansas on Sept. 12 and 13. “That racetrack is a dynamite facility, and I think it’s going to be great racing,” Cope said. “It grips (well), but it’s going to be tight on the bottom.”(FoxSports)(9-25-2001)
  • RCR Sues: Richard Childress Racing, the owner of the late Dale Earnhardt’s Winston Cup team, has filed suit in federal court accusing a Charlotte-based company of stealing the design of Earnhardt’s former car number and profiting from his Feb. 18 death in a last-lap wreck at the Daytona 500. Barry Baker and Billi Jo McCall Baker and their Heavenly Designs of N.C. Inc. company are named in the lawsuit filed Sept. 13 and reported Friday by Bloomberg News. Earnhardt won six of his seven Winston cup titles while driving for Childress and since 1980 competed in cars bearing a slanted No. 3. The lawsuit accuses the Bakers of selling memorabilia with the number combined with wings and a halo to symbolize Earnhardt’s death. “We’re going to do what we have to do to protect our rights,” Childress said Sunday. “We do have the trademark and the service marks on the stylized 3. We’ll do what we have to do to protect that. We’ve had an unbelievable amount of illegal stuff being made. What we usually do is have a cease-and-desist (order) and that pretty much stops it. We’re just trying to protect what Dale and I have built over the years.” After being told to stop selling the items, the suit contends, the Bakers modified the design and then incorporated Heavenly Designs on July 11 to continue selling items. “As a result of these unlawful activities, defendants have received substantial profits to which they are not entitled, resulting in corresponding losses to RCR,” the lawsuit contends. RCR is seeking a court order recalling infringing items from shelves and blocking future sales, along with any profits, damages and court fees. The racing group also asks that the Bakers be held personally liable for the infringements, saying they set up Heavenly Designs to protect themselves from a lawsuit. No court date has been set to hear the case.(That’s Racin’)(9-23-2001)
  • Some more driver rumors UPDATE Pressley to the #4? or is it Skinner?: Mike Skinner to the #77 Jasper Engines Ford with current driver, Robert Pressley possibly headed to the #4 Morgan McClure Kodak Chevy. Skinner is also rumored to the #4 team and the #33 Andy Petree Racing team if a sponsor is found(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE: and also hearing Robert Pressley as a stong candidate to the #4 Kodak Chevy for 2002 as well as Skinner(9-23-2001)
  • Eel River to Chevy for Talladega? Barry Dodson, crew chief and (#27) team manager for the team Rick Mast drives for, said that he may take a Chevrolet to Talladega next month if NASCAR doesn’t make the Pontiacs more competitive with a rules change soon. Dodson also has canceled the fifth annual Tia and Trey Dodson Memorial Golf Classic, because of last week’s tragedies in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania. The Huntersville charity tournament last year raised more than $10,000 for Motor Racing Outreach, in memory of Adam Petty. This year’s tournament was to support the Rick Mast Rockbridge Area Free Clinic for Underprivileged Children(Winston Salem Journal). AJ Foyt, who owns the #14 Conseco Pontiac also mentioned a few months ago that his team may run a Chevy at Talladega in Oct(9-23-2001)
  • Long to help Sadler? UPDATE 2 Little Tree: hearing former #7 crew chief Jim Long will join the #13 Virginia Lottery team owned and driven by Hermie Sadler as a consultant for the several races this year while he looks at his options for 2002. Hearing Long will be at Dover this weekend with Sadler and will work with the team in preparations for Martinsville as well(9-19-2001)
    UPDATE: With help from veteran crew chief Jim Long, Emporia’s Hermie Sadler qualified for his first race of the 2001 season. Sadler, who had failed to make the field in five previous attempts, turned the 32nd-fastest lap (152.104 mph). He credited Long, who recently left the No. 7 Ford, with helping lift the team after Sadler was 44th fastest in the morning practice. “We needed a person to trust to say, ‘This is what you need to do, and everything’s going to be fine.’ This was a big confidence booster for us,” said Sadler, who will test at Martinsville Speedway next week in preparation for the Oct. 14 race. “I don’t care what happens now. I feel like we won the race.” Tomorrow’s race will be the first Winston Cup event to feature the Sadler brothers. Elliott Sadler qualified 19th after running the second-fastest speed in practice.(Richmond Times Dispatch)(9-22-2001)
    UPDATE 2: during Happy Hour practice coverage on TNT #13-Hermie Sadler said he will have Little Tree’s on the car for Sunday’s race, Little Tree’s are those air fresheners shaped like tree’s for use in cars/trucks(9-22-2001)
    UPDATE 3: The 48 BGN team that Kenny Wallace drivers for pitted the #13 Little Trees Chevy in the Dover Cup race(Kenny Wallace Racing)(9-23-2001)
  • #500 for Beam: #32 PPI Motorsports crew chief, Mike Beam, will crew chief his 500th race today at Dover(FSN’s NASCAR This Morning)(9-23-2001)


    (9-22-2001)

  • NASCAR Personnel Moves in the future? UPDATE 4 – Nelson and Darby: Gary Nelson may indeed have other duties in the organization by next year, NASCAR officials say. Nelson was rumored last fall to be on the way out, but NASCAR President Mike Helton insisted in December that Nelson would stay in place for the time being. Darlington Speedway’s John Hunter said Friday, however, that Nelson’s duties would change and perhaps expand, possibly by the end of this year, noting that Nelson would remain with the company in some unspecified capacity. Asked about successors, Hunter agreed that present BGN director John Darby is a likely candidate, and that others not currently in NASCAR, or in NASCAR garage roles, also are on the radar(SpeedVision)(1-13-2001)
    UPDATE: Gary Nelson’s duties could pass to subordinates Buster Auton and Brian DeHart as the season goes on. NASCAR is developing a research facility in Dale Jarrett’s old Busch shop in Conover/Hickory, N.C., and it appears likely that Nelson is being pointed in that direction. SpeedVision hear conflicting reports on Busch Series director John Darby, a) that he would be offered Nelson’s job for 2002 and would take it, and b) that he would be offered Nelson’s job and turn it down, preferring his present role(SpeedVision)(3-19-2001)
    UPDATE 2: Circle Racing Online’s NASCAR sources say the current garage talk about the future of Gary Nelson as Winston Cup Series Director is heating up, yet again. We first got a rippling of a possible “promotion up and out” for Nelson at last year’s Phoenix Winston Cup race. Supposedly, his days were numbered until February of 2001. Well, it’s at tribute to his staying power (or the general infidelity of vile garage talk rumors) that it’s months later and Nelson still stands at the highest position in the Competition section of NASCAR’s staff. But that was before Dale Earnhardt’s death at this year’s Daytona 500. The resulting public relations debacle for NASCAR has lately revived talk of Nelson’s movement to a different position. The latest “best-case” version is that Nelson may head up NASCAR’s new safety R&D facility in Hickory, NC, and that other BGN Director John Darby will move up to take his place. Darby’s vacant BGN position would then be filled by current CTS Director Wayne Auton(Circle Racing Online)(5-15-2001)
    UPDATE 3: Rumor has it that Busch Series director John Darby is in line to replace current Winston Cup director Gary Nelson at the end of the 2001 season. Nelson, who took the director’s job ten years ago, is expected to move to NASCAR’s research and development department in Hickory, N.C. Before taking the director’s job, Nelson was a top-notch crew chief, winning 21 Winston Cup races in 258 starts. Even though the change is effective at the end of the season, the official announcement is expected before then.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(9-1-2001)
    UPDATE 4: Winston Cup Series director Gary Nelson will leave that job at the end of the 2001 season to head up NASCAR’s new research and development facility in Conover, NC. John Darby, currently director of the BGN series, will replace Nelson in the Cup series. Brian DeHart, who has been one of Nelson’s top assistants in the Cup series, will replace Darby as Grand National series director beginning with the 2002 season. Nelson’s departure from the job as the “top cop” in the Winston Cup series has been the subject of rumors for more than a year. The time has apparently come, however, since word is already going out among teams in the BGN garage area that Darby will be moving up from that series to Cup(That’s Racin’)(9-22-2001)
  • 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 www.jimmyspencer.net.. 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)
  • Andy Houston in the #92 BGN car? UPDATE: Current #96 Cup driver Andy Houston appears headed to the BGN as sources say Houston will join Herzog Motorsports in the BGN in 2002. Excedrin is expected to return as the team’s primary sponsor. Houston would replace the Winston Cup-bound(#48 team) Jimmie Johnson. Herzog Motorsports team manager and crew chief Tony Liberati declined comment, as did Houston. Houston also has at least one other offer from a prominent BGN team(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read)(8-23-2001)
    UPDATE: FSN’s Totally NASCAR reported Friday that Andy Houston has signed a 2 year deal with Herzog Motorsports to drive the #92 Chevy in 2002. Houston also said Excedrin will be back to sponsor the team in 2002(9-22-2001)
  • NASCAR donation? been asked, didn’t know, here is what was found – And, finally, what of NASCAR? The ruling body compiled voluminous lists of what its teams were doing, but so far, it has not made any mention of coming off the corporate hip itself to help rebuild the rubble from the terrorist attacks. Jim Hunter, NASCAR’s vice president for communications, said a donation will be forthcoming. “Our thinking is that this is going to be a long-term operation,” said Hunter. “This effort to rebuild from the effects of the devastation is going to be long-term. It may go on for a year or more. At some point in the future, we will make a sizeable financial contribution, but we’d rather sit back right now and consider where it would be most needed.”(Gaston Gazette)(9-22-2001)


    (9-21-2001)

  • Petree Close to Sponsors for 2002 UPDATE Square-D Re-ups with the #55 for 2002-2003: Steve Barkdoll, APR’s executive vice president/general manager, did have some good news from the Andy Petree Racing shop this week. “We are so close on signing sponsors for next year that I could scream. So I want to make this statement: ‘In light of the tragedies, APR is very, very hopeful to make a decision later this week about its sponsors for next year,’” Barkdoll said.(Henderson Times-News), hearing one of the sponsors could be Intel(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE: sources at APR tell me that APR is close to signing one deal, but still needs a sponsor for one of their two cars(9-19-2001)
    UPDATE 2: from a Sqaure-D employee newsletter – “….pleased to announce today that we have reached an agreement with Andy Petree Racing that will continue our primary sponsorship of the NASCAR Winston Cup #55 Chevrolet for the 2002-2003 seasons. We will use our NASCAR sponsorship for the last six races of 2001, as well as the 2002-2003 seasons, as a very key element in the internal and external introduction of our new Schneider Electric/Schneider Legrand organization in North America. We will feature our new Schneider Electric identity on the car, as well as the leading brands of our combined organization — Merlon Gerin, Modicon, Ortronics, Pass and Seymour, Square D, Telemecanique, The Wattstopper and Wiremold. We will also use our industry-leading hospitality program at these races to introduce and explain our new organization to our customers, distributors and our own people. We will be providing more details to you, including the new paint scheme for the car, on October 18 or 19, after the European Commission has approved our merger. We also plan to unveil this new car at a press conference on Friday, October 19, at the Talladega, Alabama, Superspeedway (where we are the defending champions of the race).”(9-21-2001)
    UPDATE 3: Square D and Schneider Electric announced today that a new two-year agreement with Andy Petree Racing has been reached which will continue its primary sponsorship of the NASCAR Winston Cup #55 Chevrolet for the 2002-2003 seasons. This new NASCAR sponsorship will be used as a key element and rallying point for the internal and external introduction of the new Schneider Electric/Schneider Legrand organization in North America. SQUARE D is the flagship brand in the U.S. for Schneider Electric, the worldwide electrical industry leader whose merger with Legrand is expected to be finalized in mid-October. Legrand is a worldwide leader in low voltage final distribution from electrical switches to home automation applications.(Motorsports Decisions PR)(9-21-2001)
  • Kirby to attempt Lowes: Stuart Kirby, the 20-year-old ARCA driver from Bowling Green, KY was fourth fastest on the unofficial watches at Lowes Motor Speedway testing Tuesday and Wednesday. Making his first laps in a Winston Cup car, Kirby showed the poise of a veteran as he was clocked at just over 179 mph in the #75 Ford owned by former ARCA competitor Bob Schacht. The car Kirby tested was recently purchased from PPI Motorsports and still sported a portion of the Tide paint scheme. Team members said it was the car Ricky Craven drove earlier this season at Michigan Speedway. Kirby is looking to make his NASCAR Winston Cup debut in the UAW-GM Quality 500(LMS Site)(9-21-2001)
  • Kvapil to attempt Charlotte Cup race? UPDATE 2 no: Travis Kvapil driving an #60 Addington Racing Chevy Winston Cup car during testing at Charlotte this week (Tues the 18th and Wed the 19th), if all goes well Kvapil may attempt the UAW-GM Cup race at Lowes Motor Speedway(9-19-2001)
    UPDATE: since NASCAR moved the postponed Texas Truck race to the same weekend as the Cup race at Charlotte, there is no way the team can run both(9-19-2001)
    UPDATE: CTS driver Travis Kvapil made his first laps at Lowe’s Motor Speedway during testing Tuesday/Wednesday(Sept 18-19). Kvapil had hoped to make a qualifying attempt for the UAW-GM Quality 500, but the postponement of the Chevy Silverado 350 truck race at Texas Motor Speedway changed those plans. Unfortunately, Kvapil’s test ended against the concrete wall with his former Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet suffering heavy damage(LMS Site)(9-21-2001)
  • Give Kids the World: On May 13, Colin Albo, his sister and grandparents visited Give Kids The World. Colin thought it was just another day to play at the Castle…but his grandparents were keeping a secret. Representatives from Procter & Gamble, along with race car driver Ricky Craven, were all at the Village to tell Colin that his artwork was selected as the new paint scheme for #32 Tide car. Colin created his masterpiece with the use of a blow pen. Each year, the racecar gets repainted for one race with a special design created by a guest of Give Kids The World. Colin’s artwork will be applied to the #32 Tide Ford for the October 7 race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte. Colin’s design is also featured on a die-cast collectible car, which is now available for a $5 donation with 100% of the proceeds going directly to Give Kids The World. See their site at www.gktw.org (Ricky Craven Site)(9-21-2001)


    (9-20-2001)

  • DuPont 200th Scheme: Jeff Gordon unveiled the special DuPont 200th Anniversary #24 Chevy at the DuPont Country Club on Thursday. Gordon also presented a check for $50,000 from the Jeff Gordon Foundation to the DuPont United Way Campaign for United Way of Delaware. The car has a celebratory paint scheme honoring the 200th anniversary of the DuPont Company, which will occur in 2002. The hood and the deck lid of the car will feature the “DuPont 200 Years” logo which is illustrated with a flask that has confetti spouting out of the top. The logo signifies DuPont as a leader in science for 200 years. Gordon will debut the anniversary car at Speedweeks in Daytona Beach, Fla., in mid-February. Fans will get to see it in three nationally televised races at Daytona International Speedway – the Budweiser Shootout, and one of the Gatorade Twin 125 qualifying races, and the Daytona 500(DuPont.com). See the schemes on my Paint Scheme Gallery.(Action Performance Companies)(9-20-2001)
  • RedCell stiffs Bodine? Word has it that Red Cell Batteries has stuck Brett Bodine for about a half million dollars.(Catchfence), that is why you no longer see them on the 1/4 panels of the #11 Ford(9-20-2001)
  • Testing at Lowes UPDATE 3: Lowe’s Motor Speedway will be open for NASCAR Winston Cup Series teams to test on Tuesday, Sept. 18, and Wednesday, Sept. 19, no word yet on which teams will test(LMS PR)(9-4-2001)
    UPDATE: actually no update nor any word on what teams will test at Lowes(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE 2: #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #88-Dale Jarrett, #28-Ricky Rudd, #26-Jimmy Spencer and #43-John Andretti were among the Cup drivers participating in Tuesday evening’s test at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Also testing were #92-Stacy Compton, #14-Ron Hornaday, #97-Kurt Busch, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #46-Frank Kimmel, #57-Derrike Cope, #30-Jeff Green, #60-Travis Kvapil, #75-Stuart Kirby(That’s Racin’), no word on speeds(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE 3: top 10 speeds from Tuesday test:
    #92-Stacy Compton 182.125mph
    #48-Jimmie Johnson 181.208
    #28-Ricky Rudd 180.602
    #75-Stuart Kirby 179.342
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. 179.223
    #97-Kurt Busch 179.104
    #43-John Andretti 178.926
    #30-Jeff Green 178.880
    #57-Derrike Cope 178.807
    #88-Dale Jarrett 178.630(LMS PR)(9-20-2001)
  • More Jerry Jones II: Hearing that Dallas Cowboy’s Owner Jerry Jones and the Cowboys Franchise is interested in the Body Dynamics/America’s Most Wanted Racing(AMW) program as a possible partnership or underwriter. And that the team has received requests from McDonalds, Cingular, Hershey Foods, K-B Toys and Toys-R-us to just name a few that have requested information about the underwriting sponsorship opportunities for the America’s Most Wanted Racing program, which they have decided to expand into BGN and Trucks series as well. Body Dynamics/America’s Most Wanted Racing is also in the final stages of signing a deal with Robby Unser to drive the AMW CTS entry next season(8-16-2001)
    UPDATE: Jerry Jones, who owns the Dallas Cowboys, is still working toward building a Winston Cup operation, apparently in the mold of Gibbs’ operation. The word from Detroit is that he’s looking at Ford and Dodge(Winston Salem Journal)(9-20-2001)
  • NASCAR Radio: NASCAR Radio, one channel of the new 100-channel pay-to-hear satellite system coming on line this fall, is an interesting experiment in several aspects. Not only will it be interesting to listen to Tim Farley, the channel’s programming boss, trying to come up with 24 hours of NASCAR sports news every day, but also to follow the cross-marketing, cross-promotional links with some of the other 99 channels. The whole operation is housed in a spiffy new building in Washington, with 400 people working out of 82 digital studios, all making for strange and interesting bedfellows: Andréa Bocelli, meet Dale Earnhardt Jr. “The rebirth of radio,” is the slogan behind the two new satellite systems, XM Radio and Sirius. NASCAR has signed on with XM, which is partly owned by General Motors, which has the new radios in this year’s Cadillacs and will have the new radios in more models next year, with a tiny shark fin antenna the size of a cell-phone link. The official launch of XM, about eight years in the works, was set for Sept. 12 but has been postponed until Tuesday, when it will debut in Dallas, San Diego and other points in the Southwest. It will roll out nationally in the coming weeks, dependent more on the availability of new radios and adapters than anything else. There will be 70 music channels and 30 talk channels, including NASCAR, and one selling pitch is digital-sound quality. Other talk channels include XM News, USAToday, BBC, Fox, ESPN, Sporting News, CSPAN, MTV, VH1, BET and Bloomberg. Most channels will be commercial free, in part because the service costs $10 a month. The NASCAR angle is being pitched hard. XM will have a hauler and hot-air balloon at Dover Downs this weekend to entice Winston Cup fans to buy into the package. The channel will carry all Winston Cup, Busch events and truck races, all qualifying from start to finish, all MRN and PRN broadcasts, Benny Parsons’ FastTalk, Eli Gold’s NASCAR Live, replays of classic races, and a number of in-house produced shows. There will also be a morning NASCAR News Now, a news magazine show. Farley, from Richmond’s WRVA, will be the host for a NASCAR talk show every day, 4-7 p.m.(Winston Salem Journal), TWO NOTES: the XM Radio site address is www.xmradio.com and recently Jayski did an interview for the channel (9-20-2001)


    (9-19-2001)

  • Hooper to attempt Dover: Former Southwest Tour and Winston West Champion Lance Hooper will be attempting to qualify for the Winston Cup Race in Dover this weekend. He will be driving # 47 Ford for Dark Horse Racing. Dark Horse is owned by Florida businessman Roger Smith. The Excedrin #92 BGN Team, headed up by crew chief Tony Liberati, will pit the car for Hooper on Sunday. Hooper is looking for a full time ride for the 2002 season in NASCAR and the #47car is looking for a primary sponsor. Anyone interested can contact Richard Jackson Motorsports @ 828-684-8885 and ask for Lisa(9-19-2001)
  • CART changes race name UPDATE Sad News Zanardi Injured badly: The first CART race in Europe was renamed “The American Memorial” in tribute to victims of terrorist attacks in the United States. ESPN announced that it would not carry Saturday’s American Memorial race from the German Lausitzring live, instead opting to show it Monday afternoon on a tape-delayed basis.
    UPDATE – Zanardi Hurt: Two-time CART champion Alex Zanardi lost both of his legs after his car was hit by another traveling about 200 mph Saturday during the American Memorial 500. CART officials described the 34-year-old Italian’s condition as “stable” and said he lost one leg above the knee and one below. He was airlifted to a Berlin hospital for surgery. Kenny Brack won the race under a yellow flag.(ESPN)(9-15-2001)
    UPDATE 2 on Zanardi: Alex Zanardi, the CART driver who had both legs amputated after a gruesome crash last weekend in Germany, is now listed in “critical but non-life-threatening condition,” and doctors are performing surgery every 48 hours to clean out and remove debris from his wounds. Doctors have used drugs to place Zanardi in a medically induced coma, but the amount of medication is now being gradually reduced.(9-19-2001)


    (9-18-2001)

  • Cope in the #57: Derrike Cope tested at Kansas Speedway last week on Wednesday and Thursday and drove the #57 CLR Ford. This is a Winston Cup team that is owned by Ted Campbell and sponsored by CLR cleaning products. Cope said the test went very well and he was told that they will go to the Kansas race as well as the Charlotte race. Cope and the team will test Charlotte this week on Tuesday and Wednesday(Sept 18-19). Cope said, “I am very excited about the opportunity. They will have Robert Yates engines. The Crew Chief is Joey Cudmore and the entire crew are great guys. We had a good chance to get to know each other and seemed to get along great. Our speeds we felt were good at Kansas, but worked mostly on race set-up.”(Derrike Cope Site). It was announced a few weeks ago that Kenny Wallace would drive the #57 CLR Ford at Kansas City, Charlotte, and Homestead but Wallace is subbing in the #1 for injured Steve Park(9-18-2001)
  • Lowes to Hendrick? UPDATE 7: Winston Cup team owner Rick Hendrick hopes to announce the primary sponsor for Jimmie Johnson’s Winston Cup effort within the next six weeks. “We have associates and all that done, we just haven’t announced it,” Hendrick said Aug. 3. “Probably sometime in the next 30 to 45 days. We haven’t signed anything yet.” If Lowe’s were to leave Richard Childress Racing, rumors are the company could move to Hendrick Motorsports.(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read online)
    UPDATEs see more past news on this on the #48 Team News and Links page
    UPDATE 3: hearing that Haas Automation, currently an associate sponsor on the three current Hendricks cars(#’s 5,24,25) could be the primary sponsor of the #48 Chevy for Johnson(8-21-2001)
    UPDATE 4: There are indications that Lowe’s suddenly might not have as solid a sponsorship deal with Hendrick and rookie Jimmie Johnson as once anticipated, that Lowe’s might not be that interested in marketing such a young rookie, even with the Jeff Gordon tie-in.(Winston Salem Journal)(9-3-2001)
    UPDATE 5 – Hendrick to announce new team on Tuesday: Rick Hendrick and Jeff Gordon are expected to officially announce their plans for a 2002 Winston Cup team for Jimmie Johnson at Tuesday’s media day at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. The selection of the site for the announcement is no coincidence since it appears that Lowe’s will be the primary sponsor for Johnson’s team(That’s Racin’)(9-17-2001)
    UPDATE 6: a letter/flyer was sent out by Lowes to Team Lowes Racing Fan Club members, the letter says (in part) – “In 2002, Jimmie Johnson will take the wheel of the No. 48 Lowes Monte Carlo and team with three-time NASCAR Winston Cup Champion Jeff Gordon as part of the successful Hendrick Motorsports stable of drivers. You can catch a sneak preview of the new team at three events this year, as Jimmie will debut the No. 48 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte, NC, on October 7, followed by runs at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 11 and Atlanta Motor Speedway on November 18(many readers), also see a ‘possible’ image of what the #48 will look like on my Paint Schemes page(9-18-2001)
    UPDATE 7 – it’s OFFICIAL: Lowe’s Home Improvement Warehouse announced today a multi-year primary sponsorship with Hendrick Motorsports for the new #48 Monte Carlo team to be driven by Jimmie Johnson in the Winston Cup 2002 season. In addition, Lowe’s will be an associate sponsor on the #24 Monte Carlo driven by Jeff Gordon, who will be Johnson’s new teammate. The new Lowe’s No. 48 will give fans a sneak preview on Oct. 7 when it makes its racing debut at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, followed by runs at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Nov. 11 and Atlanta Motor Speedway on Nov. 18. The car will run a full schedule in 2002. The Lowe’s sponsorship is the final piece of a program that began earlier this year when Hendrick signed Johnson to drive for the team in 2002. The #48 Lowe’s Monte Carlo will be co-owned by Hendrick and Gordon, a three-time NASCAR Winston Cup Series champion. See an image from CMI on my Paint Schemes page(CMI PR)(9-18-2001)
  • #14 Crew Member injured: Troy Cole, the truck driver for Ron Hornaday’s Cup team, suffered a broken right leg when he fell from the loading ramp of the team’s hauler as it unloaded at the track on Tuesday(That’s Racin’)(9-18-2001)
  • Ultra Motorsports to Quit Cup? UPDATE 2: 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)
  • Testing at Kentucky Speedway: Hendrick Motorsports and MB2 Motorsports are scheduled to test at Kentucky Speedway on Tues., Sept. 18 (#36-MB2 Only) and Wed., Sept. 19 and Thurs., Sept. 20 (#5-Hendrick Motorsports Only) from 9:00am to 5:00pm each day at the Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, Ky(Kentucky Speedway PR), no word on if the testing is open to the public(9-18-2001)


    (9-17-2001)

  • Elliott Start #650 Reposted Labonte #700: #9-Bill Elliott will make career start #650 on Sunday at Dover Downs. Among active drivers, only Ricky Rudd (721), Dave Marcis (758 – this is modern era, Marcis had 880 total Cup starts) and Terry Labonte (699) have more starts. Elliott made his first NASCAR Winston Cup start at Rockingham on Feb. 29, 1976. He qualified 34th and finished 33rd in that event. Since then, Elliott has won 50 poles, 40 races and more than $26 million. He’s currently 13th in the NASCAR Winston Cup Standings in his first year driving for Dodge and car owner Ray Evernham. The 45-year-old veteran is one of only two drivers with no DNFs this season. He’s moved from 19th to 13th in the standings in the past seven races since his 21st-place finish at NHIS on July 22, 2001(Golin/Harris PR), #5-Terry Labonte is scheduled to make his 700 th career Winston Cup start at Dover Downs on Sunday(9-11/17-2001)
  • #31 Driver…soon? Expect team owner Richard Childress to announce plans for the #31 car soon, possibly during the final weekend of the month when the Winston Cup circuit is at Kansas Speedway. Sources say Robby Gordon will drive the car in 2002, but the legal terminology in the contract still is being worked out.(Sporting News)(9-17-2001)
  • Lepage Out: Morgan-McClure Motorsports has made a decision not to renew a contract with Kevin Lepage as its driver for the 2002 Winston Cup season and beyond. The team will continue in its efforts to take the #4 KODAK MAX Film Monte Carlo back to a weekly competitive level. Morgan-McClure has not made a decision on a replacement for Lepage. Future plans will be announced later in the season(Morgan-McClure Motorsports PR)(9-10-2001)
    UPDATEs more updates on the #4 Team News and Links page
    UPDATE 7: Lepage signed a three-year contract after his third race with the M-M team. However, the season has gone downhill since then, as Lepage has an average qualifying position of 30.3, an average finishing position of 29.2, and has failed to qualify for three races. “The driver and team had an option that was easy for both sides to get out of,” said Lisa Shealy, M-M director of public relations. “Larry didn’t want what happened with Robbie to happen again. Basically, Larry had to let (Lepage) know before the end of the season whether he intended to renew the contract or not. Under the circumstances, Larry informed him that he would not renew it.” The team has not ruled out bringing Lepage back for next season, but it seems highly unlikely with drivers like Mike Skinner looking for a ride in 2002. Skinner visited the Morgan-McClure shop in Abingdon last month, and according to Shealy, the team has interviewed several drivers. While they would like to have a new driver secured by the end of the season, M-M says there is currently no timeline to fill the vacancy. Tired of talk that it was the team and not the driver, M-M had its engines tested over the summer on the chassis dyno of other teams like Penske and DEI, and had the aerodynamics compared as well.(Bristol Herald CourierAND Mike Skinner has talked with No. 4 co-owner Larry McClure about that ride for next season. Kevin Lepage will not be back in that car(Sporting News)(9-17-2001)
  • New Wind Tunnel: Gary Eaker, of Hendrick Motorsports, plans to break ground next month for a wind tunnel in Mooresville, NC. It will give Charlotte-based teams an alternative to facilities in Langley, VA, Detroit and Marietta, GA. Eaker, a former aerodynamicist with General Motors, joined Hendrick Racing in 1994. When the tunnel is finished, he will leave the team to manage it and will be replaced by Kurt Romberg, formerly of Petty Enterprises and General Motors(Sporting News)(9-17-2001)
  • Dover Rumor? New Hampshire Instead? UPDATE NO It is DOVER: hearing UNCONFIRMED rumors that it is under consideration to move this weeks race to New Hampshire and run Dover on Nov 23rd, but at this point it is nothing but speculation. The above PR from Dover Downs seems to indicate that Dover plans to have the race there this weekend. New Hampshire was of course postponed due to the Attacks in NYC and Wash DC on Sept 11th. Dover has a large military presence (Jayski was stationed there 1982-86) and the base is being used for the bodies of the Wash, D.C. Pentagon attack and teams are being asked to give up rooms needed for military personnel and families of the dead
    UPDATE: sources tell me there is no truth to this rumor and that the race WILL BE AT DOVER DOWNS this weekend and that the NHIS-Dover swap was never discussed or considered. Also see column at Lap by Lap: Dover Race might be in jeopardy by Mike Mulhern, which include comments from Dover Downs officials Denis McGlynn and John Dunlap(9-17-2001)

 


(9-15-2001)

 

  • Dover Hotel Room Problem? NASCAR.com is reporting – that due to the influx of military and medical personnel into the Dover, Del. area, some hotels have been calling NASCAR teams asking if they would be willing to cancel their contracted reservations for next weekend’s events at Dover. Because of the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, the nearby Dover Air Force Base has been elevated to “alert status.” The base is expecting an influx of military personnel to handle the deceased and wounded from the terrorist attacks, along with those aiding in the clean-up and recovery operations. If the NASCAR teams choose not to give up their rooms, the hotels are still honoring the reservations. The only thing that could override the reservation is a mandate from the U.S. government.(NASCAR.com)(9-15-2001)
  • SCCA Officials on Plane: Two race officials of the Sports Car Club of America were aboard United flight 93 which crashed in rural Pennsylvania on September 11. It is believed the crash occured because passengers thwarted hijackers attempts to fly to Washington DC. Linda Gronlund, 47, a native of Sag Harbor, NY and an attorney for BMW North America in Montvale, NJ, was traveling to the California wine country on a birthday vacation with her boyfriend, Joseph DeLuca. Gronlund was able to telephone her sister from the air, discussing plans to retake control of the plane. Gronlund was chief of flagging and communications for the Northern New Jersey Region of SCCA. F+C officials are seen at trackside around road racing tracks, displaying flags at each corner to indicate course condition. The NNJR stages races at Lime Rock Park in CT, including the upcoming North Atlantic championship races on September 29. Gronlund was introduced to the sport by DeLuca, also of New Jersey. Joe is a former Regional Executive of NNJR, an amateur sports car racer and cartoonist for the region’s monthly publication.(9-15-2001)


    (9-14-2001)

  • Race Postponed until Nov 23rd: hearing from good sources that the New Hampshire race has been postponed (NOT cancelled) from this weekend until Friday, November 23rd, 2001 (day after Thanksgiving and it’ll be cold). The field will be set by Owners Points and it will be a one day event(9-13-2001 1:25pm/et)
    UPDATE: NASCAR’s Winston Cup race in New Hampshire on Sunday was postponed because of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington. The move to put off the New Hampshire 300, announced by the speedway’s owner, followed a decision by the NFL to scrap its games for this Sunday. The race was rescheduled for Friday, Nov. 23, the day after Thanksgiving. “It was NASCAR’s decision, but we agreed with them 100 percent,” track owner Bob Bahre said. “We hated to cancel [postponed not canceled], but at the same time you have to think of the people, all the problems they have in New York. I think all our fans will understand, and we’ll honor all their tickets,” Bahre said. About 4,000 fans in mobile homes already had arrived at the track, some of them as early as last Saturday. The race, the second of the season at the 1-mile oval, attracts about 100,000 fans. It was only the second non-weather postponement for NASCAR in at least 30 years. The 1999 (actuallly it was the 1998 race, not 1999) Pepsi 400 in at Daytona International Speedway was postponed from July until October because of forest fires in central Florida.
    see two columns at That’s Racin’: Sunday’s Winston Cup race postponed and NASCAR postpones N.H. race(9-13-2001 2:27pm/et)
    UPDATE 2: NASCAR has announced the postponement of Sunday’s New Hampshire 300 NASCAR Winston Cup Series race at New Hampshire International Speedway. The race has been rescheduled for Friday, November 23. NASCAR also announced the cancellation of the New Hampshire 125 for Busch North Series cars and the New Hampshire 100 for Featherlite Modified Series. Speedway official announced that tickets for Sunday’s New Hampshire 300 will be honored for the rescheduled race on November 23. They also announced that those having tickets for Saturday’s Busch North Series and Featherlite Modified Series races can receive refunds by mail. The Speedway’s mailing address for Saturday refunds is:
    New Hampshire International Speedway
    P.O. Box 7888
    Loudon, NH 03307
    Gary Bahre, NHIS President said, “We fully support NASCAR’s decision to postpone the race. We regret the tragic circumstances that made the postponement necessary, but we truly understand the decision, and our hearts go out to those who have suffered losses.” Mike Helton, NASCAR President said, “We join the nation in mourning those who lost their lives and pray that those wounded will fully recover.” The starting line-up for the New Hampshire 300 has already been set according to the 2001 NASCAR Winston Cup Series rule book and will be used for the rescheduled race(NHIS PR)
    Starting Lineup: NASCAR announced that there would be no qualifying and that the field would be lined up according to the points and procedures announced last Tuesday, not according to the points at the time of the rescheduled race(SpeedVision). See the starting lineup on myNew Hampshire 400 Starting Lineup page (since the fields is set by Owners Points not Drivers Points, if a driver change is made by Nov 2001, the car will start in the same spot with the new driver).
    NOTE: Last year, the high temperatures on the weekend after Thanksgiving in the region were in the 20s. ALSO – This is all I know or has been reported, no word on exact schedule for the postponed race has been posted as of yet(9-14-2001)
  • Fire at Petty Enterprises UPDATE 3: hearing there was a fire at Petty Enterprises Wednesday afternoon, been told it was a small in the engine room, more info as it is found
    UPDATE: FOX8 WGHP reported today that a fire occured at the Petty Enterprises shop, two crewmembers injured, one mechanic was flown to Baptist Hospital in Winston Salem, NC with burns to hands and legs. The other employee was not injured as badly. Appears that gasoline was spilled while preparing the 44 car to load on the hauler, the spill entered a room that contained a hot water heater and ignited. Guil Rand Fire Dept responded(a few readers sent this info)(9-12-2001)
    UPDATE 2: Two employees were injured at Petty Enterprises Wednesday afternoon when vapors from a fuel spill were ignited in a storage area. The two men were loading a 55-gallon drum of racing fuel onto a truck when the drum was knocked over. One of the caps on the drum was either missing or loose, allowing the fuel to spill. Vapors drifted into an adjacent room where a pressure washer is kept. The vapors were ignited by a flame from the hot water heater that supplies the pressure washer with water. The identities of the two men were unavailable Wednesday night. Randolph County EMS responded to the accident. A helicopter from Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center transported one of the men from the complex. Hussey said the man who was airlifted had received injuries to his leg and arm. The fire had been extinguished by the time firefighters arrived at the complex. He said a former Level Cross volunteer firefighter works at Petty Enterprises. Hussey said that man orchestrated the use of fire extinguishers and the cleanup of the spill.(Racing Extra)(9-13-2001)
    UPDATE 3: A small storage room located at the famed Petty Enterprises race shop caught on fire late Wednesday afternoon leaving two crew men with injuries and burns. The fire was believed to be caused when the two crew men, Mike Root and Rich Parks, were cleaning up a gasoline spill and a flash fire erupted. Root suffered second and third-degree burns to his arms and legs. He was taken to Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem to be treated for his injuries. Root was kept overnight where he remains in stable condition. Parks suffered a laceration to his head and a minor burn to his hands. He drove to High Point Regional Hospital where he was checked and released. The famed A-frame shop at Petty Enterprises suffered minimal damage. “Our thoughts and prayers are both with Mike and Rich this morning,” said Kyle Petty, who serves as the CEO of Petty Enterprises. “Things could have been a lot worse than they were, and we.re grateful that both are going to be ok.”(Williams Company PR)(9-14-2001)
  • TV Ratings – Richmond: Nielsen Media Research has delayed issuing its final national ratings report due to the chaos in New York City, but the broadcast network overnights and cable ratings have been compiled. Richmond had a three-night show culminating with Winston Cup Saturday evening on TNT. The Cup audience totaling just under 3m households and a 6.2 share. Friday night, the Busch Series on TNT drew 1.3m households – a pretty good audience for that time slot, while the trucks had just under half a million households tuned in Thursday night on ESPN2.
    Winston Cup, Richmond (TNT, 9/8) 3.5 rating / 6.2 share / 2.927m households
    Busch Series, Richmond, (TNT, 9/7) 1.5 rating / 2.8 share / 1.271m households
    Craftsman Trucks, Richmond (espn2, 9/6) 0.58 rating / 1 share / 0.465m households(SpeedVision)(9-14-2001)


    (9-13-2001)

  • Lazzaro to run limited 2002 Schedule: TWC Motorsport Ltd. announces its plans to compete in the 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup Series. The TWC Motorsport Ltd. team (#68) will run a limited schedule in 2002 competing in 15 races. Anthony Lazzaro will be the driver of the team’s Chevy Monte Carlo. Lazzaro has competed in Winston Cup Series, Busch Grand National Series, IRL, Grand-American Road Racing Series, ALMS, Kool/Toyota Atlantic and Speedvision Cup. Lazzaro won the 1999 Toyota Atlantic Championship as well as Championships in 1994 and 1995 in the Hooters Pro FF2000, in 1993 the Valvoline Runoffs, and was the World Karting Association World Champion in 1987,1988 and 1992. Tom Coleman, the owner of TWC Motorsport Ltd., has also competed in several motorsport racing series over the past 14 years as a driver and owner. With the experience gained at the Winston Cup level in 2001, the decision to run a limited schedule in the Winston Cup series in 2002 will allow the team to test at each track prior to the event. This approach will maximize the potential for success in each race. The team operates out of a state of the art race facility located in Asheville, North Carolina. TWC Motorsport Ltd. is in the process of seeking primary and associate sponsors for the limited 2002 season and plans to run a full schedule in 2003.(TWC Motorsport PR)(9-13-2001)
  • Ultra Motorsports to Quit Cup? 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)
  • Homestead News: Saturday’s NASCAR Winston Cup Open House/Select-A-Seat Day, Including The Car Shows And 5k Run At Homestead-Miami Speedway, Has Been Re-Scheduled For Sunday, October 14 Due To This Week’s National Events.(Homstead-Miami Speedway PR)(9-13-2001)
  • Race Still on at the Moment UPDATE 3 Travel Info: Still early to tell but NBC6 Sports/On Track from Lowe’s Motor Speedway show from Charlotte, NC reports that a NHIS track official says NASCAR has informed them that “everything is still going on as scheduled” at Loudon (for the New Hampshire 300 Cup race) this weekend as of 2:00pm/et today and NASCAR says “As of right now, everything is on, but we will continue to evaluate the situation.” So far Major League Baseball has postponed tonight’s games, hearing the NHRA has postponed this weekends event. CART, IRL, NFL, and other leagues are discussing plans for the weekend. See another story at ESPN: Sports world reacts quickly to attacks
    UPDATE: As of Tuesday afternoon, the planned Winston Cup race Sunday at New Hampshire International Raceway in Loudon, N.H., remains on schedule. NASCAR officials continue to discuss the fate of the race, which has been put in doubt by the tragic terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington. Air travel – the primary means by which series officials and competitors would travel to the race – remains stopped (until Thursday, Sept 13th unknown time – as of now). Should the race be canceled, it is unclear what would happen to the event. There are no off-weekends remaining in the 2001 schedule until after the Nov. 18 season finale at Atlanta Motor Speedway.(That’s Racin’)(9-11/12-2001)
    UPDATE 2: A NASCAR spokesman Wednesday afternoon said the sanctioning body “is hopeful of making a decision within the next 24 hours” on whether or not Sunday’s Winston Cup New Hampshire 300 would take place at New Hampshire International Speedway in Loudon.(NASCAR.com), FSN’s Totally NASCAR reoported that a decision would be made by 12noon/et on Thursday, Sept 13th(9-12-2001)
    UPDATE 3 – TRAVEL INFO: With the possibility of racing resuming this weekend, NASCAR.com collected some travel information and advice for those fans making the journey to Texas on Saturday for the Truck Series’s Silverado 350 and the Cup’s New Hampshire 300 on Sunday in Loudon. See NASCAR.com for Weekend travel information(9-13-2001)


    (9-12-2001)

  • New Hampshire Qualifying Cancelled – The Lineup: Activities scheduled for Friday, Sept. 14 at New Hampshire International Speedway, Loudon, N.H., for NASCAR.s Winston Cup Series have been cancelled, officials announced today. Qualifying for Sunday.s New Hampshire 300 was scheduled for Friday. The 43-car field for Sunday’s New Hampshire 300 will be set according to the 2001 NASCAR Winston Cup Series rule book. “Our country has experienced a terrible tragedy today,” said NASCAR.s President, Mike Helton. “All of the NASCAR community offers our sincerest sympathies to all those who have suffered losses. We will continue to monitor and evaluate this situation and make the appropriate decisions as the week progresses.” At this time, Saturday and Sunday track activities remain unchanged(NASCAR PR). Qualifying will be set as follows:
    #1) – First 35 by current Owner Points
    #2) – Race winners from the previous and current season not already in the field
    #3) – Past Winston Cup Champions not in by steps 1 and 2
    #4) – Qualifying Attempts with Owners points as the tie breaker
    (so if one owner has 4 qualifying attempts and one has 3 attempts but has more Owners points the owner with 4 attempts makes the race), Owners Points and Attempts can be seen on my Provisional Page(9-11-2001)
    THE LINEUP: if the race at NHIS is run on Sunday, September 16th, see the New Hampshire 300 Lineup Page, NASCAR.com has an entry list posted (Entry List Link), which inlcuded three teams/drivers who did not make the tentative lineup: #13-Hermie Sadler, #89-Morgan Shepherd and #98-TBA(which was going to be Kenny Wallace before he took over the #1 Pennzoil Chevy for injured Steve Park), these teams didn’t have enough race attempts to make the race(9-12-2001)
  • Revised Schedule if race is held at NHIS:
    Saturday, September 15th
    11:00am – 12:00noon/et NASCAR Winston Cup Series Practice
    3:30pm/et (Approximately) NASCAR Winston Cup Series Final Practice (One hour, time permitting)
    Sunday, September 16th
    1:00pm/et New Hampshire 300 (300 Laps): NASCAR Winston Cup Series(NHIS PR)(9-12-2001)


    (9-11-2001)

  • Kansas Testing UPDATE: hearing that #18-Labonte, #93-Blaney, #8-Earnhardt Jr, #33-Nemechek, #11-Bodine will be testing for the upcoming (Sept 30th) Cup race at Kansas Speedway on Sept 10th amd 11th(9-5-2001)
    UPDATE: #10 Valvoline Pontiac team is in the process of returning to Charlotte via automobiles Tuesday afternoon after canceling the second day of a scheduled two-day test session in Kansas City. Crew chief James Ince said there was no desire on his, driver Johnny Benson’s, or the team’s part to test after witnessing the attacks in New York City and Washington. Ince also said emergency aircraft were not available in case of an accident at the race track. “We felt it was best to come home,” said Ince. “There just wasn’t any desire to run after what we watched on television today.”(MBV PR) AND The #93 Cup team loaded up immediately and began the 16-hour drive home from KC after seeing the devastation in NYC and DC. The core group of the #93 team (Dave Blaney, Crew Chief Doug Randolph, Shock SP. Eric Slade plus their R&D team) were completed yesterday’s plans but could not fly home today on the King Air 300 for obvious reasons.(Bill Davis Racing), the #36 GNC BGN team also cancelled it’s test at Kansas(9-11-2001)
  • PRN’s Garage Pass will have driver reactions and comments on today’s show about the NYC/Wash DC Tradegy, some comments: “Brett Bodine told us he and Joe Nemechek stayed in KC to test…the rest headed home via cars and trucks. We got up with Jimmy Spencer, who was going to meet with a sponsor out west. He was in the Houston airport when it got shutdown. We found him in Beaumont, TX in a car driving back to NC…around a 16 hour drive.(9-11-2001)
  • Fox sources say race will be cancelled: Although sources have indicated to FOX Sports Net’s Totally NASCAR that Sunday’s Winston Cup race at Loudon, N.H., will be cancelled, NASCAR announced only Friday’s qualifying at Loudon is cancelled(see story above). If the Winston Cup Series does race at Loudon Sunday, the starting order will be set by point standings. Totally NASCAR’s staff contacted every Winston Cup and Busch Series team Tuesday, except PPI Racing with Winston Cup drivers Andy Houston and Ricky Craven. Everyone is accounted for and safe. The only person outside the United States is car owner Richard Childress, who is in British Columbia, Canada. A test at the new Kansas Speedway was cancelled this morning. All teams, including Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Bobby Labonte, are driving the nearly 1,000 miles between the Kansas City, Kan. facility and their Charlotte, N.C. team headquarters. Tuesday’s edition of Totally NASCAR has been cancelled due to the attacks on the United States. For complete coverage of the NASCAR community’s reaction to this tragedy, tune in to FOX Sports Net at 6 p.m. local on Wednesday.(FoxSports)(9-11-2001)
  • But: The horrifying terrorist attacks on the United States Tuesday morning are obviously still being sorted out and will likely take a good bit of time to unravel, and while it may seem trivial, we [SpeedVision] must report that the attack, and the subsequent shutdown of airports nationwide, may take its toll on the weekend’s racing action. NASCAR was to be in Loudon, New Hampshire, while CART is heading overseas to England, the Indy Racing League is readying for its season finale in Texas and the Grand-Am road racing series is also prepping for its last race of the year in Daytona. All of the series are at least discussing the possible cancellation of this weekend’s events as everyone watches to see how the events unfold. NASCAR officials, like all others in America, were aghast and shocked at the terrorist actions in New York and elsewhere Tuesday morning and were watching developments with concern. “We, like everybody else, are glued to the TV,” said Jim Hunter, NASCAR vice-president for communications. Motorsport events, such as press conferences and public appearances, were immediately canceled as the enormity of the disasters became known. Hunter said NASCAR’s office in New York, midtown at 375 Park Avenue, was not directly affected. “Everybody’s fine there,” Hunter said. “Of course, they can’t get off the island. Some are still in the office. Some went over to the Waldorf, where they have some rooms. They told us quite a number of the New York employees had relatives working [at the World Trade Center].” Hunter also said NASCAR is in discussions with the Bahre family, owners of the New Hampshire International Speedway, site of this weekend’s scheduled Winston Cup event, and that decisions about that race likely would be made later Tuesday. “We talking to the Bahres,” he said. “We’ve talked to them twice. We’re going to keep monitoring it, then decide what to do.”(SpeedVision)(9-11-2001)
  • NASCAR donation to GOP draws notice AND: NASCAR gave $15,000 to the state Republican Party just one day after a judge upheld the constitutionality of a law passed by the GOP-controlled Legislature that bars access to autopsy photographs, including those of racing legend Dale Earnhardt. Campaign records show the Republican party reported the check on June 14, a day after Circuit Judge Joseph Will refused to release Earnhardt’s autopsy photos, according to a Gannett News Service story published by the Pensacola News Journal, The News-Press in Fort Myers, and Florida Today in Melbourne. NASCAR and GOP officials denied any connection between the state political gift and the Legislature’s swift passage of a bill blocking public access to autopsy photos. See full AP story at That’s Racin’: NASCAR gave $15,000 to GOP day after autopsy photos sealed(9-10-2001)
    AND from CNN/SI – Questions remain – Ethicists debate independence of Earnhardt report(9-11-2001)


    (9-10-2001)

  • 2002 Winston Cup Schedule Released: NASCAR released the official 2002 Winston Cup schedule, highlights include 3 off weekends, the 1st Pocono and 1st Michigan race swap, Atlanta moves it fall race to Oct and Homestead is the season ender: See my 2002 Winston Cup Schedule page for the full rundown. Also see story at That’s Racin’: NASCAR unveils 2002 Winston Cup schedule, The season will have three off weekends, including the traditional Easter Sunday (March 31) and Mother’s Day (May 12) weekends, along with the weekend of June 30. Also see NASCAR.com for 2002 Winston Cup schedule and for the 2002 Busch Series schedule. So it looks like another long marathon after the June 30th OFF date(9-10-2001)
  • 2nd Morgan-McClure team? UPDATE 6 Lepage will not return in 2002: …….Another small outfit, Morgan-McClure Racing, is trying to land another primary sponsor in an effort to add a second team. How much might either organization benefit from the addition of a second team? Greatly, at least according to Larry McClure. “Having more money and a second team allows you to do more things more economically,” Larry McClure said. “You can run that second team more cheaply than you can the first. Another team would also allow you to try certain things that you can’t with just one; try more things with the engine or the chassis or the aero package. Also, with a second team, if one guy is complaining about something, but the other guy isn’t, you’re able to get to the bottom of problems a lot more quickly.”(CNN/SI), hadn’t heard or seen anything on this in a while, thought it would be of interest. ALSO – hearing Mike Skinner could be the driver if they start a 2nd team(8-29-2001)
    UPDATE: Skinner’s next ride is unclear, and there is talk he might wind up with car owner Larry McClure(#4 team).(Winston Salen JournalAND Recent reports have Skinner going to Morgan-McClure, not as a replacement for Kevin Lepage but as the driver of a new team. Word is that Skinner will bring some sponsorship with him, though there’s no knowledge on who that sponsor might be.(CNN/SI)(9-2-2001)
    UPDATE 2: also hearing Skinner could be the driver of the #4 Kodak Chevy in 2002. No word on if this happens how it would effect Lepage or IF the team expamds to two cars, Lepage could be in the 2nd car(9-4-2001)
    UPDATE 3: Skinner has talked with Larry McClure, who has yet to decide if Kevin Lepage will remain with that team next year. “I have talked with Skinner, but we’re not negotiating anything,” McClure said. “I’ve talked with several people. But right now, Kevin’s driving the race car and we’re trying to go forward.” McClure has long looked to run a second team, but insists that’s not in his immediate future(Winston Cup Scene – in part – need sub to read)(9-6-2001)
    UPDATE 4: Larry McClure is growing frustrated with changes on his No. 4 Chevrolet team, but he’s going to make at least one more. McClure said Friday he would have a new driver for his Winston Cup program in 2002. He said he did not renew the contract of current driver Kevin Lepage, which expires at the conclusion of this season, by the Sept. 1 deadline. Lepage is the team’s second driver this season; Robby Gordon drove the first five races with the team before McClure hired Lepage. In order to test his equipment to make sure it is up to the level of his competitors, McClure said he had his engines tested on the chassis dynos of other Chevrolet teams and had the aerodynamics compared on his Chevrolets. All are in line with other Chevrolet teams, McClure said. McClure said he had no timetable for signing a new driver(That’s Racin’)(9-7-2001)
    UPDATE 5: McClure said a deadline came for him to let Lepage know if he planned to act on the extension in their agreement. He met the deadline by mailing Lepage a letter saying he was not extending the agreement at this time. He said he and Lepage are looking at options, but he hasn’t ruled out Lepage competing in the car next season.(Richmond Times Dispatch)(9-8-2001)
    UPDATE 6: Morgan-McClure Motorsports has made a decision not to renew a contract with Kevin Lepage as its driver for the 2002 Winston Cup season and beyond. The team will continue in its efforts to take the #4 KODAK MAX Film Monte Carlo back to a weekly competitive level. Morgan-McClure has not made a decision on a replacement for Lepage. Future plans will be announced later in the season(Morgan-McClure Motorsports PR)(9-10-2001)

 


(9-9-2001)

 

  • Rudd bumps way to Win: #28-Ricky Rudd won the Chevrolet Monte Carlo 400 at Richmond after nudging #29-Kevin Harvick out of the way in the final laps of the race, returning the favor as Harvick had bumped his way past Rudd on lap 383 of the 400 race. The win coupled with #24-Jeff Gordon’s tough run (36th after being bumped by #40-Marlin and hitting the wall early in the race, but coming back to run laps and finish the race), allowed Rudd to gain 120 points on Gordon’s point lead. Gordon now leads Rudd by 222 with #88-Jarrett back in 3rd place, 393 points back. See That’s Racin’ for Monte Carlo 400 resultsWinston Cup race points, and Winston Cup points (after Richmond)(9-9-2001)
  • #50 for Yates: with #28-Ricky Rudd’s win at Richmond, it marked Robert Yates Racing 50th win in Winston Cup racing(9-9-2001)
  • Head Restraint Testing: NASCAR’s commissioned investigation into head and neck restraint systems, announced during the release of the Dale Earnhardt investigation results, is slated to get under way in the coming week, NASCAR vice president of corporate communications Jim Hunter said Saturday. Drs. Dean Sicking and James Raddin, the spearheads of the Earnhardt investigation, will conduct the investigation alongside Dr. John Melvin, a world-renowned restraint expert.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(9-9-2001)
  • New Tires in 2002? Goodyear engineers are considering a change to larger, taller tires next season to cut speeds. Such tires have been tested, but crew chiefs expressed displeasure yesterday with such a plan(Winston Salem Journal)(9-9-2001)
  • Talladega Rules? NASCAR officials still have not announced rules for next month’s Talladega race. NASCAR brought in 19 teams to test possible new Talladega rules two weeks ago, a test that team owners suggest cost them between $15,000 and $25,000 each. Some crew chiefs say NASCAR may wait until race week to announce the new rules, to try to keep teams from testing. But they add that the top teams are probably building new cars for the new rules, for wind-tunnel testing.(Winston Salem Journal)(9-9-2001)
  • No Bull Stays the same? The Winston No Bull 5 events are expected to remain the same for next season. Those races that pay a $1 million to an eligible driver and fan are Las Vegas, the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte, the Daytona night race, the Richmond fall race and the Talladega fall race(Racing Extra)(9-9-2001)
  • Dallenbach Decision soon UPDATE: Wally Dallenbach Jr., who will decide this week whether to continue his television career or go back racing, is certain about one job for the 2002 season: He will compete in next year’s 2002 Rolex 24 at Daytona. Dallenbach most likely will team up with fellow Daytona Beach resident Mike Skinner in a Robinson Racing Mark III for the twice-around-the-clock sportscar marathon. Dallenbach told NBC/TNT officials that he needs to have their final 2002 offer on the table this week or he’ll have to throw his hat back into the Winston Cup garage. Dallenbach is somewhat of a hot commodity in Winston Cup. “I think we’re starting to see teams needing experienced drivers,” he said. “They’re beginning to realize the answer isn’t to hire a driver who’s 20 years old.” Dallenbach has two offers from two solid teams, but he must move quickly to seize an opportunity(Daytona Beach News Journal), supposedly those offers are from Ganassi Racing(Target car?) and Hendrick Motorsports(#25)(9-6-2001)
    UPDATE: Wally Dallenbach, currently TV analyst for NBC and TNT, and Winston Cup driver Mike Skinner are expected to test a prototype sports car Wednesday at Daytona International Speedway. The pair plan to drive with team owners George Robinson and Jack Baldwin in the 2002 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona, scheduled Feb. 2-3. (That’s Racin’)(9-9-2001)
  • Rudd Offered a TV? During the first two cautions(? thought Gordon and Wallace led during the first 2 cautions? Rudd didn’t lead until lap 96 and there were a few cautions by then) when Ricky Rudd was leading the Monte Carlo 400, Jeremy Mayfield raced him to the line trying to get back on the lead lap. He was unsuccessful on both attempts, so Mayfield’s team made an interesting offer. His spotter informed Rudd’s spotter that the team would give Rudd a 36-inch SONY flatscreen TV if he’d let Mayfield back on the lead lap at the next caution(Richmond Times Dispatch)(9-9-2001)


    (9-8-2001)

  • Park out 4-6 weeks UPDATE: CNN/SI reported that Steve Park, driver of the #1 Pennzoil Chevy, will be out indefinitely or as long as 4-6 weeks AND from a Pennzoil PR – Under the advise of doctors, Winston Cup driver Steve Park will remain out of competition indefinitely as he heals from the moderate concussion he suffered during the BGN race in Darlington on Sept. 1. Dr. Jerry Petty, a neurological specialist at Carolinas Medical Center, stated on Friday afternoon that Park would be unable to drive for “conservatively four to six weeks.” Under the supervision of Dr. Petty, Park received further consultation and a second MRI this week revealed a bruising of the brain which needs time to heal. Dr. Petty confirmed Park will make a full recovery. Kenny Wallace, who will race in the #1 Pennzoil Chevrolet this weekend in Richmond, will remain behind the wheel until Park returns. Wallace also drove the Monte Carlo during the Darlington event where he moved from 43rd to 12th before overheating forced him behind the wall. “The doctors have Steve’s best interest in mind and we completely support their decision,” said Ty Norris, executive vice president of motorsports at DEI. “Our primary focus is getting Steve better and we want him to be healed before getting back in the car. Steve wants to race as soon as possible but knows it’s better for him to be patient.” Wallace was originally scheduled to race the Loudon Winston Cup event for George deBidart but has been released from those duties. “We really need to thank George for allowing Kenny to race for us,” said Norris. “We are going to work with George when he decides to put Kenny in a Winston Cup race later in the season.”(Pennzoil PR)(9-7-2001)
    UPDATE: see a statement by Kenny Wallace about the situation at the Kenny Wallace Racing site(9-8-2001)
  • Ripken Scheme? UPDATE 4: hearing #18-Bobby Labonte’s car will have a special Cal Ripken Jr farewell paint job at Dover in September. Ripken Jr plays for the Baltimore Orioles and is retiring at the end of the 2001 baseball season(8-17-2001)
    UPDATE: hearing that since Cal Ripken’s last home game will be the evening of the race, at Camden Yards vs. the Yankees. To honor his achievements, MBNA will be renaming the race from the MBNA 400 to the Cal Ripken 400 (or something similar) and that Ripken will be present at the race as the Grand Marshal(8-20-2001)
    UPDATE 2: also hearing that #18-Mike McLaughlin will drive the Cal Ripken car in the MNBA 200 BGN race and that a formal announcment will come in the next 7-10 days(8-23-2001)
    UPDATE 3: NASCAR and Major League Baseball are expected to finalize an unprecedented agreement within the next 10 days that would celebrate Cal Ripken Jr.’s retirement in a most unique way. For starters, the MBNA 400 Winston Cup race scheduled for Sept. 23 at Dover Downs International Speedway in Dover, Del., will be renamed the MBNA Cal Ripken Jr. 400. In addition, the Orioles third baseman will act as the grand marshal for the 1 p.m. race before flying back to Baltimore to play in the final home game of his career at Camden Yards that night. “We have been waiting for a couple of days for a sewn-up package,” said Carmine Tiso, a media relations specialist handling business matters for Major League Baseball. “Hopefully in the next week or 10 days it will be (finalized). There are a lot of parties involved including us, the Orioles, MBNA.” Tiso described the deal as “all but done.” Another source close to the deal said a joint announcement about the specifics could come as early as Thursday at Camden Yards. NASCAR has some other tributes planned for Ripken, as well. The Interstate Batteries/MBNA #18 car driven by defending Winston Cup champion Bobby Labonte will be repainted for the Dover race to include a Cal Ripken logo. The Ripken logo will also be on Mike McLaughlin’s car during the MBNA 200 Busch Series race that Saturday at Dover Downs, Tiso confirmed. The tentative plan, according to the source close to the deal, is for Ripken to arrive in Dover — about 100 miles from Camden Yards — on Sunday around 9 a.m., sit in on the morning drivers’ meeting and conduct a short news conference with the motorsports media. Ripken will be part of the drivers’ introductions and will be driven in a convertible around the track before the race begins. Ripken will then wave the green flag to start the race before getting in a helicopter and flying back to Baltimore. The winner of the Winston Cup race will be invited to fly to Baltimore as Ripken’s guest for that night’s game.(York Daily Record) and another story at the Washington Post: Ripken Farewell Faces a Switch(8-24-2001)
    UPDATE 4 – maybe? One major obstacle lies in the path of Dover Downs’ quest to rename the Sept. 23 MBNA 400 after one of major league baseball’s all-time greatest players. According to track publicist John Dunlap, if the New York Yankees agree to allow the Baltimore Orioles to push back the start of their game at Camden Yards from its currently scheduled 1:35 p.m. start to “somewhere between 5 and 7,” Cal Ripken Jr. will serve as grand marshal of the MBNA Cal Ripken Jr. 400 at Dover Downs International Speedway. Dunlap also said a press conference is “supposedly” scheduled for Thursday at Camden Yards regarding this announcement, but didn’t name a time.(NASCAR.com)(8-30-2001)
    UPDATE 5: Thanks to the efforts of MBNA, fans on hand for the NASCAR Winston Cup race on September 23rd at Dover Downs International Speedway will have the added bonus of seeing one of the greatest baseball players in the history of the game live and in person. A day that is already very special to Cal Ripken, Jr., has become equally special for NASCAR racing. Before Cal Ripken plays his last game at Camden Yards on September 23rd, he has some other business to attend to – like being the Grand Marshal of a Winston Cup race that is now officially being called the MBNA Cal Ripken, Jr. 400. Ripken also will wave the green flag, meet with Winston Cup drivers and take a ride around the Monster Mile just prior to the start of the race bearing his name. As far as anyone associated with motorsports can remember, Ripken thus becomes the first major league baseball player to have a Winston Cup race named in his honor. And while there are plenty of honors coming his way as he prepares to retire, as far as Ripken is concerned, the trip to Dover Downs is special.(Dover Downs PR)(9-6-2001)
    IMAGE: got an image of what #18-Bobby Labonte’s car will look like at Dover, it’s a tiny image, but gives you an idea, lots of Oriole orange(9-8-2001)
  • Shawna’s Deal in Trouble? Shawna Robinson’s continued attempts to run in the Winston Cup series this season – and next – may be in jeopardy. Sources close to her team said Friday that Tropicana, which was going to sponsor her next race later this month at Kansas City, Kan., is reconsidering its participation. Tropicana was also considered a strong candidate to sponsor Robinson’s team for a full season in NASCAR’s Grand National series next season, as well as some additional Cup events(That’s Racin’AND Shawna Robinson’s bid to drive in selected Cup races this season has been put on hold until sponsorship can be found. Car owner Michael Kranefuss announced in March plans to field cars for Robinson in six Cup races this season. Robinson qualified at Michigan in June, becoming the first female to compete in Cup in more than a decade but failed to qualify at California, Indianapolis and Chicago. She was scheduled to compete at Kansas and Homestead later this season(Racing Extra)(9-8-2001)
  • #26/66 Shocks Banned? UPDATE: NASCAR has banned the special shocks Jimmy Spencer and Todd Bodine have been using over the summer(Winston Salem Journal)(9-3-2001)
    UPDATE: Because of Derrick Finley’s ingenuity, there’s a new provision in NASCAR’s rule book. Finley, team engineer and shock specialist on Jimmy Spencer’s team, built a set of shocks with a much larger main shaft. But he only got to use them once — during qualifying at Michigan last month. NASCAR officials quickly changed the rules to keep them from being used again. Spencer qualified 18th at Michigan, but Finley said the car would have been faster with chassis adjustments. The shocks are designed to allow the body of the car to move lower on the track, which would make it run faster. “The concept worked, and it wasn’t illegal at the time,” Finley said. Finley spent a week finding seals and other parts to use with his new shocks, but now they’re just sitting in a box in the team’s hauler. “It’s disappointing,” he said.(Atlanta Journal Constitution)(9-8-2001)


    (9-7-2001)

  • NASCAR/Humpy Meeting Postponed: Humpy Wheeler said a meeting scheduled for this week with NASCAR officials about the energy-absorbing front bumper he’s involved with was postponed. Series officials requested more data and it took longer than anticipated to get that information, Wheeler said. “Hopefully, we’ll meet next week,” Wheeler said.(Roanoke Times)(9-7-2001)
  • Paint at Richmond: besides the seven Looney Toons schemes, the #11-Brett Bodine Ford is in Kroger colors; #18-Bobby Labonte has Circuit City (an assoc sponsor) on the hood of his Interstate Batteries Pontiac; The #93-Dave Blaney Dodge has the Mac Tools colors that were supposed to run at Bristol(9-7-2001)


    (9-6-2001)

  • New Cup Team? UPDATE 2: Fox broadcaster and Petty Enterprises adviser Larry McReynolds and Fanz Enterprises are announcing a new Winston Cup team Friday at Richmond International Raceway. Fans are participating in the new team by actually buying into the ownership.(Lap by Lap). No idea what this is about(9-6-2001)
    UPDATE: from back in April – J. Roe Hitchcock wants to put the stock into stock-car racing. The 39-year-old investment executive and Harvard MBA, known for buying faltering companies and rebuilding them, hopes to create a publicly-traded company with headquarters in Charlotte that would field as many as five NASCAR teams. Hitchcock recently filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for an offering of 1 million to 2.5 million shares, selling for $10 each. The newly formed company’s name: FanZ Enterprises Inc. The FanZ filing lists Hitchcock as chief executive and two others, Frederick McDonald II, and Michael Wurtsbaugh, as president and chief financial officer, respectively. The offering, if approved by the SEC, would be made this spring with race teams competing in 2002. Through a deal with Sharp Racing Inc. of Concord, FanZ secured a 6,000-square-foot race shop for $60,000 a year. The SEC filing anticipates building a 200,000-square-foot racing hub in the Charlotte area. See full story at the Business Journal: Stock on the fast track. Address of the company is listed as: FanZ Enterprises, Inc., 3020-I Prosperity Church Road, Suite 293 , Charlotte, NC 28269. Phone: (317) 815-1128 (which is Indiana), from a listing at Market Guide(9-6-2001)
    UPDATE 2: On Friday at Richmond, Fanz Enterprises will unveil the newest in fan participation opportunity in NASCAR – a chance for fans to own part of a Winston Cup series team. Fanz is offering a maximum of 2.5 million shares of its common stock at $10 per share. Formed in October 2000, the company organized to develop and manage a professional, multicar motorsports operation that will compete in NASCAR-sanctioned events, including Winston Cup. Funds raised through the public offering, which has been approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission, are expected to allow the company to field a minimum of two full-time race teams. Race fans can become part owners by purchasing a minimum of 25 shares of stock, a one-time investment of $250. All proceeds generated by the stock offering will be deposited in an interest-bearing account until a 1 million-share goal is reached or exceeded. If the goal is not reached, the money will be refunded. For more information, call (888) 444-8233 or visit fanzenterprises.com.(That’s Racin’)(9-6-2001)
  • Waltrip – not so good: #15-Michael Waltrip is making negative history by being lower in points than any Daytona 500 winner in history. He’s 27th, and his only top 10s were his 500 victory and his second-place in the July race in Daytona Beach(Daily Press)(9-6-2001)
  • Stewart Staying at Gibbs: #20-Tony Stewart, under contract to Joe Gibbs Racing, says he won’t be going anywhere. After driving the Indianapolis 500 for Chip Ganassi Racing, rumors persisted that Stewart would join Ganassi’s Winston Cup program. “I’m not going to Ganassi. I have three years left on my contract,” Stewart said Sept. 1. “I don’t have any intention of going anywhere. He’s never asked me anything. The only time we’ve ever talked about driving anything was the IRL car next year and that was brought up one time about a week after May was over. That’s all that’s ever been brought up.”(Winston Cup Scene – in part – need sub to read)(9-6-2001)
  • Some ‘Wild’ rumors UPDATE 2: The latest drivers changes in the wind could involve a shake-up at Hendrick Motorsports. John Andretti’s name is being mentioned. Richard Childress still hasn’t announced his new driver, adding to the confusion in the garage. There is even wild speculation that Childress might be able to wrangle Tony Stewart away from Joe Gibbs(Winston Salem Journal), a few Jayski notes – Andretti is signed with Petty Enterprises thru 2002, All Hendrick drivers are signed thru 2002 at least. Tony Stewart is signed with Joe Gibbs Racing thru 2004.(9-3-2001)
    UPDATE: Am hearing Jerry Nadeau may be out at the #25 car at the end of the 2001 season but UAW-GM is staying as a sponsor and that Wally Dallenbach supposedly is talking with Rick Hendrick about coming back to the #25 Chevy(9-3-2001)
    UPDATE 2: John Hendrick, president of Hendrick Motorsports, says the team is close to landing a sponsor for a fourth team, which will feature rookie Jimmie Johnson. He also dispelled rumors that Jerry Nadeau’s job was in jeopardy, saying that team would stay intact(Winston Cup Scene – in part – need sub to read)(9-6-2001)
  • Kenny Wallace in the #1 at RIR: Kenny Wallace will run the Cup race in Richmond, subbing for Steve Park in the #1 Pennzoil/Looney Toons/Sylvester and Tweety Chevy(Kenny Wallace Racing). AND Steve Park will make a full recovery from injuries suffered in an accident at Darlington Raceway on Sept. 1 according to Dr. Jerry Petty of Carolina Neurosurgery and Spine in Charlotte, N.C., but will not participate in this weekend’s Chevrolet Monte Carlo 400 at Richmond International Raceway. “I’m following doctor’s orders right now and if he says time is what I need right now, then that’s what I’ll do,” Park said. “We were on top of our game when we went out and I want to make sure we’re back on top of our game when I come back.” Park, who returned to Charlotte on Monday, Sept. 3, received further consultation at Carolinas Medical Center from Dr. Petty, a neurological specialist familiar to the NASCAR community. Petty said time is the biggest asset to Park while recovering from his injuries. “We’ve found some evidence of bruising on the brain and that is what we are treating him for right now,” said Dr. Petty, who did not speculate on a return date for Park. Kenny Wallace, who substituted for Park in last week’s Southern 500, will assume the driving duties behind the wheel of the Pennzoil Chevrolet for this Saturday’s event(Pennzoil PR), Park was scheduled to run the #31 Whelen Chevy in the BGN race at Richmond(9-5-2001)
    but Marsh Racing has no plans on running the #31 Whelen at Richmond. with a sub driver. No determination about future BGN races have been made, the team was scheduled to race in Kansas City, Phoenix and Homestead.(9-6-2001)
  • Sad News: Sprint Car Driver Steve Haman died on September 5th after battling for his life after a crash at Husets Speedway in Brandon South Dakota. Haman was competing in a Labor Day event for 360’s. Haman suffered a serious head injury in a crash at Husets Speedway Monday night and on Wednesday his family took him off life support.(Keloland.com), thought’s go out to family and friends(9-6-2001)
  • TV Ratings at Darlington: Darlington had decent household audiences on TNT for both Winston Cup and Busch – 3.738m and 1.190, respectively according to Nielsen Media Research. Having Cup Happy Hour run on the heels of the Busch race Saturday – and on TNT instead of CNNSI – produced a million-plus audience. The IRL pulled its normal 1.1 overnight rating with its normal 3 share. Those are becoming take-it-to-the-bank numbers for Tony’s tigers. CART wound up in a drag racing sandwich Sunday on espn2 and wound up with .0402m households tuned in.(See full story at SpeedVision)(9-6-2001)
  • TV Ratings at Darlington: Darlington had decent household audiences on TNT for both Winston Cup and Busch – 3.738m and 1.190, respectively according to Nielsen Media Research. Having Cup Happy Hour run on the heels of the Busch race Saturday – and on TNT instead of CNNSI – produced a million-plus audience. The IRL pulled its normal 1.1 overnight rating with its normal 3 share. Those are becoming take-it-to-the-bank numbers for Tony’s tigers. CART wound up in a drag racing sandwich Sunday on espn2 and wound up with .0402m households tuned in.(See full story at SpeedVision)(9-6-2001)
  • Hornish in NASCAR? UPDATE: Current Indy Car(IRL) points leader Sam Hornish Jr. told the Herald Citizen at Nashville that he would like to move to NASCAR after he had accomplished what he wanted in open wheel(8-9-2001)
    UPDATE: Hornish says he intends to fulfill the remaining two years of his three-year contract with Pennzoil Panther Racing. Hornish acknowledged that there have been some inquiries about his services from CART teams, and rumors about a possible ride in NASCAR with Chip Ganassi Racing circulated the IRL garage area in Joliet, Ill., last weekend. One reporter even tossed out the obligatory Formula One question, which Sam promptly swatted away. “Right now, the way I look at it, I’m 100 percent staying with the IRL,” said Hornish, whose series résumé consists of only 19 starts. “They have the Indy 500, and that’s my goal. There’s very few other things in the world of motorsports that excite me outside of the Indy 500, and winning Indy-car championships. If it wasn’t for the IRL, I wouldn’t have a place to race. Or I’d be racing something with fenders. Far as I’m concerned, staying here is the only right thing I can do.”(Star Telegram)(9-6-2001)
  • Pruett: not NASCAR but keeping up with former Cup driver Scott Pruett – Former CART and Winston Cup driver Scott Pruett will drive a third car for the Rocketsports Racing team in this weekend’s Trans-Am 125 at Laguna Seca Raceway. Pruett, who won the 24 Hours of LeMans LMGTS class in June, will drive a XKR for team owner Paul Gentilozzi.(Las Vegas Sun)(9-6-2001)


    (9-5-2001)

  • Stewart goes for third straight: Tony Stewart is going for his third consecutive victory at a short track Saturday night at Richmond International Raceway. He won at Richmond in May and at Bristol last month. No driver has won three consecutive short-track races since Rusty Wallace did it in 1993. The last time a driver won three or more short track races in a season was Jeff Gordon in 1996.(RacingExtra)(9-5-2001)
  • Pressley Condition UPDATE 2: #77-Robert Pressley, who was in a hard wreck against the front stretch at Darlington, was listed as ok, but transported to a local hospital for observation(TNT Race Coverage)(9-2-2001)
    UPDATE: Robert Pressley was expected to be released from Carolinas Hospital in Florence late Sunday after X-rays and a CT scan following a vicious crash into the inside wall on the frontstretch on Lap 349. Pressley spun after getting hit from behind as he came off Turn 4. His car slammed into the wall on the right side and then lifted with two wheels off the ground as it kept sliding. Pressley got out of the car but slumped down against the wall until his team and emergency workers came to his aid. He was taken by ambulance to the hospital complaining of tenderness in his back and abdomen, but the test came back normal(That’s Racin’)(9-3-2001)
    UPDATE 2: Robert Pressley spoke about the accident and updated his condition Tuesday afternoon – Q) How Are You Feeling?  “I’m doing pretty good.  They checked everything from my toes to the top of my head.  They told me I was a little smarter than they ever thought I was, but there are no broken bones or anything like that.  I don’t have any problems with my head, neck, shoulders or ribs — no problems like that so everything is good.  They released me Sunday night.  We got out of there about nine o’clock and spent the night in Darlington before coming home yesterday (Monday).  They did all the tests pretty much as a precaution and everything is good.  I’m just sitting around taking it easy this week and getting ready for Richmond.  We’re gonna go up there and get back on track.” You Seemed to Get Out of the Car Quckily with the HANS Device.  “Yeah, that was quicker than I guess we had ever gotten out of the car before with the HANS on.  When I hit the wall it just knocked the breath out of me really bad, so I wanted to get some air and probably got out of the car quicker than I needed to.  I guess it knocked all of the panels out of the back and when the car was up on its side it got smoke inside the car.  I thought we had a little fire going, so I wanted to get out of there to keep that from playing any role in it.”(Jasper Motorsports)(9-5-2001)
  • #44 G-P/Petty driver Buckshot Jones Launches Teen Driving Program: Georgia-Pacific Teen Safety 500 Puts Responsible Drivers on the Lead Lap; Richmond Teens Will Work Toward National Goal of One Million Safe Miles – With the Georgia-Pacific Teen Safety 500, students from two area high schools who put safety first behind the wheel and log crash-free and violation-free miles will earn cash for their school, prizes for themselves and bragging rights over their rival school. NASCAR Winston Cup driver Buckshot Jones, who drives the #44 Georgia-Pacific Dodge Intrepid for Petty Enterprises, will be joined by Georgia-Pacific Executive Vice President John Rasor, and state highway safety and education officials for the Virginia launch of this national model program at 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 6, 2001, at Thomas Dale High School (3626 W. Hundred Rd., Chester, VA). The Georgia-Pacific Teen Safety 500 challenges students at Thomas Dale High School and Lloyd C. Bird High School to achieve and record 500 safe miles, on the way to a national goal of one million miles(Williams Company)(9-5-2001)
  • Benson to be with his Dad: #10 Valvoline Pontiac driver Johnny Benson isn’t going to arrive at Richmond until early Friday morning. Instead of going to the track on Thursday as he does most weekends on the NASCAR Winston Cup circuit, Benson will make a whirlwind visit to his hometown of Grand Rapids where he will watch his father John Benson’s induction into the 45-member Grand Rapids Sports Hall of Fame on Thursday night. Benson plans to fly to Richmond on Friday when practice and qualifying begin for Saturday night’s 400-lap race. The elder Benson enjoyed a long racing career and posted more than 75 victories including 1966 National Supermodified Championship in Oswego, N.Y. – the “crown jewel” of the modified series at the time. He also started and continues to operate Benson Speed Equipment in Grand Rapids. Benson ran only one Winston Cup race ( at Michigan Intl Speedway on June 24, 1973, started 36th finished 21st in the #84 Dodge) in his career preferring local racing that didn’t involve the travel commitments or time away from the family. Today the 64-year old Benson works in his race shop during the week and spends weekend watching his son race in NASCAR. Joining Benson in the 2001 class include two-time world boxing champion Roger Mayweather, former baseball pitcher Dave Rozema plus three other local sports figures.(MBV PR)(9-5-2001)


    (9-4-2001)

  • New Crew Chief for the #15: DEI has hired Richard “Slugger” Labbe as the new crew chief for its #15 NAPA Chevys and driver Michael Waltrip. The position of crew chief has been vacant since Scott Eggleston’s departure from DEI in May. Steve Hmiel has served in the position on an interim basis. Waltrip and Labbe worked together previously while Waltrip drove for Ultra Motorsports. Labbe will take over the position this weekend at Richmond. Labbe also served as crew chief for the late Kenny Irwin at Robert Yates Racing(That’s Racin’)(9-4-2001)
  • Stewart 2nd in ARCA race: Tony Stewart and Ken Schrader spent their Labor Day holidays doing what seems to be the only thing they consider relaxing — driving a race car. Stewart whiled away his Monday afternoon at the DuQuoin (Ill.) State Fairgrounds trying unsuccessfully to run down ARCA teammate and two-time champion Frank Kimmel who went on to win the Federated Auto Parts Southern Illinois 100 on the dirt mile. 1999 series champion Bill Baird, making his first start of the year, finished third with eight-time ARCA winner Ken Schrader in fourth.(see full story at That’s Racin’)(9-4-2001)
  • #21 to test in FL UPDATE: The Wood Brothers head to Lakeland, FL, today to test their Richmond car. Elliott Sadler is competing in a new car this weekend as he attempts to win a bonus prize. Sadler is one of five drivers who qualified for a million-dollar bonus if he wins the Monte Carlo 400(Richmond Times Dispatch), the No Bull 5 million(9-4-2001)
    UPDATE: the #21 Wood Brothers team cancelled the Lakeland Speedway test today because of bad weather but the team and driver Elliott Sadler is testing in Memphis, TN today instead for the Richmond race(9-4-2001)
  • Stock Car Hall of Fame UPDATE: Dale Earnhardt, Bill France Jr., Glen Wood and A.J. Foyt will be inducted into the National Motorsports Press Association’s Stock Car Racing Hall of Fame on Sept. 1 in Darlington, SC. Earnhardt, the seven-time Winston Cup champion who died in a crash on Feb. 18 during the Daytona 500, will be the first to go into the hall under a new rule allowing “exceptional” candidates to be considered immediately after the end of their careers. The NMPA membership approved the creation of that category of candidates at its annual convention in January. Earnhardt was named on 95 percent of the ballots submitted by NMPA members. France and Wood were each named on 84 percent and Foyt was chosen on 73 percent of the ballots. Candidates needed 65 percent of the vote to win election(That’s Racin’)(7-14/8-31-2001)
    UPDATE: Four men whose accomplishments have made their names synonymous with success in American motorsports were inducted into the Stock Car Racing Hall of Fame Saturday night. Among them was Dale Earnhardt, the seven-time Winston Cup champion who was killed in a Feb. 18 crash during the Daytona 500. For Earnhardt, who was joined in this year’s class by Bill France Jr., Glen Wood and A.J. Foyt, election by members of the National Motorsports Press Association is undoubtedly the first of many such honors. Earnhardt was the first person voted in under a rule adopted in January allowing “extraordinary candidates” to become eligible immediately. “Dale Earnhardt is one of the best drivers we ever had in this sport, if not the best,” said Junior Johnson, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1973. “He put his whole life into it – the determination he had, the will to win, not giving up and his record stands for that.” In an unusual turn of events, France was inducted by his brother, Jim, then immediately inducted Earnhardt. NASCAR President Mike Helton read a letter from Earnhardt’s widow, Teresa, who did not attend the ceremony. Kathy Watkins, Earnhardt’s sister, accepted on behalf of the family.(more at That’s Racin’ and The acceptance speech of Kathy Earnhardt Watkins)(9-4-2001)
  • Ward going no place: Ward Burton said after Sunday’s victory that he’s not going anywhere other than where he is right now, in the #22 Dodges owned by Bill Davis.(That’s Racin’), there were rumors last week that Burton was headed to the #25 team(9-4-2001)
  • Triple Play for Spotter at Richmond: Spotter Rocky Ryan will be busy this week at Richmond spotting for three drivers who all come from Virginia. Cup driver Ward Burton who is from South Boston, BGN driver Kevin Grubb who is from Mechanicsvill and Cup driver Stacy Compton who is from Hurt but driving in the CTS race(9-4-2001)
  • Labonte Park UPDATE: City (Corpus Christi, TX) officials have raised about $10,000 of the $60,000 needed to renovate the Nueces River Park and rename it in honor of NASCAR racing brothers Bobby and Terry Labonte. City spokesman Ted Nelson said Monday that donations were better than expected and that the park should be ready to open Sept. 26. The Caller-Times also announced plans to publish a special section on the day of the park’s dedication. Steve Arnold, the paper’s marketing director, said the section will include historical photos and that it’s “not just your NASCAR driver’s guide.” Proceeds from the section will go toward the park fund, he said. The community response to the fund-raising has been strong, said Tom Niskala, chief executive officer for the Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce(The Caller)(7-4-2001)
    UPDATE: “The Corpus Christi Caller-Times is saluting our hometown heroes with a special section published on September 26, 2001, the day that Corpus Christi honors the Labontes with the dedication of Labonte Park. Part of the proceeds from the sale of this special section will go to the Labonte Park Fund for future additions and improvements. This is not your typical NASCAR section. The Corpus Christi Caller-Times has put together rare photos of Bobby and Terry growing up in Corpus Christi, their first race cars and an exclusive interview with the brothers talking about growing up in Corpus Christi and what the new Labonte Park means to them.” See the full story at the Corpus Christi Caller-Times(9-4-2001)


    (9-3-2001)

  • Park Released from Hospital: Winston Cup driver Steve Park, pilot of the #1 Pennzoil Chevrolet, was released from Carolinas Hospital System this afternoon and has returned to his home in Mooresville, NC. Park was hospitalized after suffering a moderate concussion in an accident during the Busch race held on Saturday at Darlington Raceway. No decision has been made regarding Park’s participation in the Chevrolet Monte Carlo 400 at Richmond International Raceway on Sept. 8th.(Pennzoil Racing PR)(9-3-2001)
  • 3 drivers knocked out of 2002 The Winston? as far as I can tell by my calculations, with Ward Burton winning on Sunday, three drivers got knocked out of the 2002 The Winston: Matt Kenseth, 5/2000(Coca Cola 600); Jeremy Mayfield, 6/2000(Pocono); Jerry Nadeau, 11/2000(Atlanta). Why? because the field now has 20 drivers and used the previous season winners IF there are not 20 eligible drivers/teams for the All-Star race which will be held at Lowes Motor Speedway in May 2002. See my 2002 The Winston page for the rules, news and rundown(9-3-2001)
  • Last Dodge win at Darlington? The last time a Dodge won at Darlington before Ward Burton’s victory on Sunday, Burton was nine years old. Buddy Baker, driving a Dodge owned by Petty Enterprises, won the 1971 Rebel 400 by beating the Dodges of Dick Brooks and Dave Marcis(The State), the last Dodge to win the Southern 500, was also Buddy Baker in the 1970 race(9-3-2001)
  • BGN Accident Park/Foyt UPDATE 3: 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. NASCAR.com 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)
    UPDATE 2: TNT reported at 4:05pm/et that Steve Park has had a CAT Scan of his head and chest which reveiled a moderate concussion and a fractured or dislocated left sternoclavicular joint, still no word on Park’s status for the Southern 500 but it looks doubtful.
    CNN/SI reports: Steve Park suffered a concussion, bruising to the left side of his neck and a separation of the collar bone where it meets the sternum. Park will be kept at nearby Carolinas Medical Center for observation. It was immediately reported that Kenny Wallace will drive Park’s Winston Cup car in Saturday’s Happy Hour, but no announcement was made on who might fill in for Park in Sunday’s Southern 500. AND from SpeedVision: Kenny Wallace will stand in for injured Steve Park in Saturday’s final practice and in Sunday’s Southern 500. Steve Hmiel, general manager for Dale Earnhardt Inc., said before practice Saturday that he hoped Park could start Sunday’s race, run one lap, then give way to Wallace. It is not known whether NASCAR officials would allow that. Park suffered a concussion, fracture or dislocation of the left sternoclavicular joint, and a bruised neck in a weird crash under caution in Saturday’s race.(9-1/3-2001) and…..
  • Wallace in for Park UPDATEs: hearing from sources that Kenny Wallace will start and race the #1 Pennzoil Chevy in the Southern 500 in place of Steve Park who is too sore to race(9-1-2001)
    UPDATE: FSN’s NASCAR This Morning reports that Wallace will drive the #1 Chevy at Darlington. Also of note: Park was wearing a head-and-neck restraint device AND from the Kenny Wallace Racing Site: According to the #1 team, Kenny Wallace will be driving the #1 car until Steve Park recovers from the accident. What does that mean about NHIS and the #57 car? Stay tuned Monday for details.
    AND Park is scheduled to be released from Carolinas Hospital System in Florence, SC, Sunday afternoon and the team announced Park suffered no broken bones. A Sunday morning CT scan was also negative. Park, who wears a HANS device in Winston Cup races, was wearing a similar Hutchens head and neck restraint system on Saturday.(NASCAR.com)(9-2-2001)
    Park stays at Hospital Sunday night: Steve Park remained at Carolinas Hospital System in Florence Sunday night, recovering from a concussion suffered Saturday during a bizarre accident under caution in the BGN at Darlington. He was expected to remain hospitalized at least until Monday. Park was unable to drive in Sunday’s Southern 500 and may miss next week’s Winston Cup race at Richmond, as well. Kenny Wallace drove Park’s Dale Earnhardt Inc.-owned No. 1 Chevrolet in Sunday’s race, finishing 41st Norris said he was looking into Wallace’s availability for next weekend. Early speculation was a broken rear axle could have caused Park’s car to suddenly veer to the left, but NASCAR vice president Jim Hunter said the axle was checked at the track and appeared intact. There may be an “issue” involving the steering wheel, but he said it was too early to say for certain.(That’s Racin’), during the Southern 500 Sunday, Benny Parsons (BP) showed a steering wheel and how it ‘clicks’ on and mentioned that could be the possible cause. The reasoning was that Park had just got in the car after the rain delay and a wire could had gotten in the way(9-3-2001)
  • South Carolina NASCAR License Plate: Special plate on tap. A license plate saluting NASCAR will soon be available in South Carolina. Gov. Jim Hodges signed legislation Sunday before the Southern 500 authorizing the plate that officials anticipate being on sale by Darlington’s race next spring, if not before.(The StateAND Hodges signed a law creating specialty S.C. license plates with messages ranging from NASCAR to “Choose Life.” Planned Parenthood has said it would sue if the bill, created in part by racing superstar Jeff Burton, was approved by Hodges, a Democrat. The organization has said the law is discriminatory because it forbids any of the proceeds going to groups that provide information on abortions. Money from the Choose Life design would support private, nonprofit crisis pregnancy programs that work to curb abortions with shelter, food, clothing, education, medical care and adoption services. The money is distributed through Department of Social Services grants to facilities that do not offer or promote abortions. The plates will cost $70 for two years. Vehicle owners can choose a NASCAR-themed license or one that says “Choose Life.” Half of the money from license plate sales will go to the 19 locations of the S.C. Children’s Emergency Shelter. Burton’s wife, Kim, is on the shelter’s board and Burton pushed the license plate idea. The rest of the money is split between promoting sports tourism in South Carolina and improving highway safety(Myrtle Beach Sun News)(9-3-2001)
  • #7 needs sponsor UPDATE: NationsRent will be gone as the primary sponsor on the #7 team and driver Mike Wallace already been told that he no longer has a job(CNN/SI)(9-2-2001)
    UPDATE: but sources tell me that NationsRent has another year on its contract with Jim Smith and the Ultra Motorsports team(9-3-2001)
  • Lowes to Hendrick? UPDATE 3: from the Winston Salem Journal – Lowe’s is now expected to move from the Richard Childress camp(#31) to Hendrick’s to sponsor incoming rookie (#48) Jimmie Johnson next season, according to NASCAR sources(Winston Salem JournalBUT from a SpeedVision Interview with Richard Childress: Q) Is the Lowe’s situation as safe as we’ve heard it is? A) “You’re going to be hearing some announcements on that. We’re going to be okay with the third [No. 31] team. Lowe’s will honor their contract [through 2002]. The direction they go, I’m going to leave that up to y’all. We’ve agreed we’re going to honor it, but we have other things working”(SpeedVision)(8-7-2001)
    UPDATE: Winston Cup team owner Rick Hendrick hopes to announce the primary sponsor for Jimmie Johnson’s Winston Cup effort within the next six weeks. “We have associates and all that done, we just haven’t announced it,” Hendrick said Aug. 3. “Probably sometime in the next 30 to 45 days. We haven’t signed anything yet.” If Lowe’s were to leave Richard Childress Racing, rumors are the company could move to Hendrick Motorsports.(Winston Cup Scene – need sub to read online)
    UPDATE 2: hearing that Haas Automation, currently an associate sponsor on the three current Hendricks cars(#’s 5,24,25) could be the primary sponsor of the #48 Chevy for Johnson(8-21-2001)
    UPDATE 3: There are indications that Lowe’s suddenly might not have as solid a sponsorship deal with Hendrick and rookie Jimmie Johnson as once anticipated, that Lowe’s might not be that interested in marketing such a young rookie, even with the Jeff Gordon tie-in.(Winston Salem Journal)(9-3-2001)
  • Blackboxes Sooner? NASCAR is expected to make a decision on accident data recorders in the next few weeks. The ADRs will be mandatory in NASCAR’s three major series next season and might be in Cup cars before the end of this season — by the October 28 race at Phoenix. That would allow teams to adapt to the systems and provide time for offseason adjustments if necessary(Sporting News)(9-3-2001)
  • #26/66 Shocks Banned? NASCAR has banned the special shocks Jimmy Spencer and Todd Bodine have been using over the summer(Winston Salem Journal)(9-3-2001)
  • Scary Stuff: On Sunday, a crew member playfully was throwing a wadded ball of duct tape at NBC analyst Benny Parsons, but when Parsons moved, the tape hit Penske (#2) crew chief Robin Pemberton in the left eye and tore the cornea. That didn’t stop Pemberton, who wore a patch over the eye(Sporting News)(9-3-2001)
  • Checking Temps at RIR: Mark Martin and Matt Kenseth will have new additions to their respective pit crews next weekend at Richmond. The additional pit workers will concentrate on how the drivers replace the fluids they lose during a race, as well as the cars’ onboard temperatures. Scientists from the Gatorade Sports Science Institute will condict a pilot study on Martin and Kenseth to determine sweat loss, cardiobascular responses and heat stress in drivers during a NASCAR race. During an average race, cockpit temperatures can climb to 140 degrees, putting drivers at risk for dehydration and heat illness. The race-day test will help provide drivers with fluid replacement and heat illness prevention recommendations.(That’s Racin’)(9-3-2001)
  • Nemechek leaving? Petree Says #33 will not close UPDATE: #33-Joe Nemechek may be the next driver in the free-agent market, and car owner Andy Petree may be down to a one-car team (the #55 with Bobby Hamilton) next season, according to team members, who say Nemechek is working the garage area hard for a new ride if needed.(Winston Salem JournalAND Andy Petree lost Oakwood Homes as the primary sponsor on Joe Nemechek’s #33 car (at the end of the season), but insists that the future of the team is secure. “Reports of my demise have been greatly exaggerated,” Petree said Saturday.(CNN/SI)(9-2-2001)
    UPDATE: It also appears that Joe Nemechek will be leaving Andy Petree at the end of the season, possibly to be replaced by Mike Skinner if Petree can land a sponsor for the team(Winston Salem Journal)(9-3-2001)
  • Leffler Subs for Buckshot: #01-Jason Lefflerm who fell out of the Southern 500 early, was able to gain experience and get some track time at Darlington Raceway in the #44 Dodge as he took over for Buckshot Jones on lap 197 and finished the event bringing the team a 35th place finish. Jones has the flu and was feeling bad so they asked Leffler to take over driving the 44 car because Leffler is about the same size as Jones(Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates PR)(9-3-2001)
  • Brothers and the Southern 500: Ward Burton’s first victory in the event, coupled with Jeff Burton’s win in 1999, marks the second time that brothers won the race. Terry Labonte won in 1980 and Bobby Labonte in 2000.(St Petersburg Times), and of note, only one father-son duo have won the race, Buck Baker (1953-60-64) and Buddy Baker, 1970.(9-3-2001)
  • Hornaday Penalized: Ron Hornaday was penalized three laps by NASCAR at The Southern 500 for disobeying a black flag, dropping him five places to 37th(St Petersburg Times)(9-3-2001)

 


(9-2-2001)

 

  • Burton wins at Darlington in the Southern 500: #22-Ward Burton wins the 52nd Southern 500, his 3rd career Winston Cup win, 2nd at Darlington (won in the 2000 spring race – 53 races ago). Burton won from the 37th starting spot, a provisional spot, only the fifth driver to do so. #24-Jeff Gordon was 2nd and extended his Winston Cup Points lead to 343 points over #28-Ricky Rudd (who finished 7th). #40-Sterling Marlin is now in 3rd place, 481 points behind Gordon. See That’s Racin’ for Unofficial Southern 500 Results and Unofficial Standings along with a column: Ward Burton, Dodge win a wild one at Darlington(9-2-2001)
  • Mayfield Unhappy UPDATE: #12-Jeremy Mayfield, 21st in points, said there are a lot of opportunities to drive for good teams in the series next season and he feels like he’s wasting the most important time in his career. “I’m going through the same old up and down season like I have. But I feel like right now I’m better than I’ve ever been as a driver and I’ve wanted it more than I’ve ever wanted it. … We need to really look at this and figure out what is best for all of us. I’ve got two more years on my contract, but the last I remember, I don’t remember changing everybody’s positions being part of the deal.” Asked if that meant it was time for the driver to change, Mayfield replied: “}Maybe it is. Either that or we need to figure out what is wrong with our team and fix it. All I want to do is run good every week.”(That’s Racin’)(9-1-2001)
    UPDATE: Is Mayfield seeking a new ride? His crew has suspected that for weeks. Mayfield has talked with Childress’ men about the opening in that operation’s second team, with Mike Skinner leaving, according to team sources. Car owner Childress still hasn’t announced the driver for his second team for 2002, though it is expected to be Robby Gordon. And Mayfield’s on-track problems this season have been easy to spot. He has only two top 10s all summer. Now Mayfield is up front – again – about some of his frustrations, and says it may be time for him to move on, even though he has two years left on his contract with car owner Roger Penske as Rusty Wallace’s teammate.(Winston Salen Journal) plus a column at That’s Racin’: Crew chief comments on Mayfield’s comments(9-2-2001)
  • 15th Different Winner in 2001 a record: when #22-Ward Burton won the 2001 Southern 500, he became the 15th different Winston Cup winner in 2001, which breaks the record for NASCAR’s modern era (which began in 1972) of 14 set in 2000 and 1991. Winners in 2001: #15-Waltrip, #1-Park, #24-Gordon, #29-Harvick, #88-Jarrett, #21-Sadler, #55-Hamilton, #2-Wallace, #20-Stewart, #99-Burton, #28-Rudd, #18-Labonte, #40-Marlin, #22-Burton, #8-Earnhardt Jr. Also even though Burton won, he is not in the 2002 Winners Circle program as he is too deep in Owners Points, see my 2002 Winners Circle Page for the current standing for 2002, this years plan and past years plans(9-2-2001)
  • NASCAR and Engines: NASCAR officials met with engine builders Saturday morning to propose rule changes for next season and seek feedback. Among the plans is a rule that would limit teams to one engine per race weekend. Exceptions to that most likely would be Daytona in February, when the series is there for almost 10 days, and the Coca-Cola 600 because it is the Winston Cup’s longest race. Another consideration is a minimum weight on engine parts, including pistons, rods and cranks. Some competitors say that some teams have spent thousands of dollars on strong, lightweight engine pieces. Crew chief Paul Andrews likes the suggestions. “It’s no big deal for us,” he said. “Our engine component weights are right there where NASCAR wants them anyway. We feel like our motors will run a weekend, qualifying all the way through. If your competitor is doing the same things, that’s OK, that’s not a bad thing. “They’re doing stuff that makes sense. It will save money. It will save aggravation.”(Racing Extra)(9-2-2001)
  • McDonalds and Gibbs…No: McDonald’s, which recently severed ties with the No. 96 team, only wants to associate itself with a high-profile team and driver. There has been a report that McDonald’s approached Joe Gibbs Racing about possibly coming on board, but that Gibbs feels an obligation to his current sponsors(CNN/SI)(9-2-2001)
  • Busch the 2nd: Kurt Busch today becomes only one of two rookies to start on a Winston Cup pole in Darlington’s 52-year history. Davey Allison was the other, in 1987.(Tennessean), for years NASCAR would not allow rookies on the track before the first practice and qualifying sessions(9-2-2001)


    (9-1-2001)

  • Stewart still restraintless UPDATE but Spencer to wear one: #20-Tony Stewart used the Talladega test to try out a Hutchens device, but he didn’t like it. “I was pretty uncomfortable with it,” he said, adding that he had trouble figuring out how to get in and out of the car with the device’s straps in place. Stewart, who is one of only two Winston Cup drivers 9the other #26-Jimmy Spencer) not wearing a head and neck restraint, said he ruled out the HANS restraint. “I don’t want anything else on my neck,” he said.(AJC)(8-31-2001)
    UPDATE: #20-Tony Stewart won’t wear a head and neck safety device in the Southern 500 at Darlington. However, #26-Jimmy Spencer has decided to wear the Hutchens restraint system for the race. A team representative for Stewart said Friday that although the driver wore a Hutchens device during testing this week at Talladega Superspeedway, he would not put one on at Darlington. After Friday’s Winston Cup practice, Spencer said he was undecided about his plans for the safety device. However, before qualifying, he told reporters he would use the Hutchens system.(CNN/AP)(9-1-2001)
  • NASCAR Personnel Moves in the future? UPDATE 3 – Nelson and Darby: Gary Nelson may indeed have other duties in the organization by next year, NASCAR officials say. Nelson was rumored last fall to be on the way out, but NASCAR President Mike Helton insisted in December that Nelson would stay in place for the time being. Darlington Speedway’s John Hunter said Friday, however, that Nelson’s duties would change and perhaps expand, possibly by the end of this year, noting that Nelson would remain with the company in some unspecified capacity. Asked about successors, Hunter agreed that present BGN director John Darby is a likely candidate, and that others not currently in NASCAR, or in NASCAR garage roles, also are on the radar(SpeedVision)(1-13-2001)
    UPDATE: Gary Nelson’s duties could pass to subordinates Buster Auton and Brian DeHart as the season goes on. NASCAR is developing a research facility in Dale Jarrett’s old Busch shop in Conover/Hickory, N.C., and it appears likely that Nelson is being pointed in that direction. SpeedVision hear conflicting reports on Busch Series director John Darby, a) that he would be offered Nelson’s job for 2002 and would take it, and b) that he would be offered Nelson’s job and turn it down, preferring his present role(SpeedVision)(3-19-2001)
    UPDATE 2: Circle Racing Online’s NASCAR sources say the current garage talk about the future of Gary Nelson as Winston Cup Series Director is heating up, yet again. We first got a rippling of a possible “promotion up and out” for Nelson at last year’s Phoenix Winston Cup race. Supposedly, his days were numbered until February of 2001. Well, it’s at tribute to his staying power (or the general infidelity of vile garage talk rumors) that it’s months later and Nelson still stands at the highest position in the Competition section of NASCAR’s staff. But that was before Dale Earnhardt’s death at this year’s Daytona 500. The resulting public relations debacle for NASCAR has lately revived talk of Nelson’s movement to a different position. The latest “best-case” version is that Nelson may head up NASCAR’s new safety R&D facility in Hickory, NC, and that other BGN Director John Darby will move up to take his place. Darby’s vacant BGN position would then be filled by current CTS Director Wayne Auton(Circle Racing Online)(5-15-2001)
    UPDATE 3: Rumor has it that Busch Series director John Darby is in line to replace current Winston Cup director Gary Nelson at the end of the 2001 season. Nelson, who took the director’s job ten years ago, is expected to move to NASCAR’s research and development department in Hickory, N.C. Before taking the director’s job, Nelson was a top-notch crew chief, winning 21 Winston Cup races in 258 starts. Even though the change is effective at the end of the season, the official announcement is expected before then.(NASCAR.com Buzz)(9-1-2001)
  • #300 for Hut: after a week delay (missed the race at Bristol), #90-Hut Stricklin will make his 300th career Winton Cup start when he starts 36th at Darlington for the Southern 500(9-1-2001)
  • Johnson and Wilkesboro: Former Winston Cup star Junior Johnson, who won 50 races behind the wheel and six championships as a car owner, said Friday he has been involved in some efforts to reopen North Wilkesboro (N.C.) Speedway, but doesn’t see any progress on the issue. Bruton Smith and Gary Bahre jointly bought the speedway in 1996, but each used one of the track’s two races dates for other tracks – Smith for Texas Motor Speedway and Bahre for his New Hampshire International Speedway. The North Wilkesboro track has not been open since. “I’ve put a little bit of effort into it,” he said. “Not enough to start shooting at somebody, believe me. I think the Wilkesboro race track should be opened. It has a lot of potential, maybe not for Winston Cup, but you’ve got a variety of things you could do. Johnson, who is grand marshal of Sunday’s Southern 500, said he has talked Bob Bahre, Gary’s father and co-owner, about selling, but he has never committed to a sale. “I think he’s to the point now where he doesn’t even want to talk about it,” Johnson said.(That’s Racin’AND – North Wilkesboro Photo: Bob Hanner of The Stock Car Gallery stopped by North Wilkesboro Speedway after attending the Bristol race and took a nice shot of the track in it’s current state, see the image at: North Wilkesboro Speedway August 26th 2001(8-29/9-1-2001)
  • Caterpillar to build engine blocks: #22-Ward Burton said Friday that his sponsor would start building engine blocks for the Dodge engine in 2002, hoping to lighten up what some consider an overweight engine. “Caterpillar’s going to start doing the blocks for them next year,” Burton said. “They’ll probably lighten it up a little bit. We probably need it. I don’t know that it’s going to help us any, though. We need to get smarter with the aero package and get a little bit more power of the motor.”(RacingOne)(9-1-2001)