NASCAR Announces Modifications To NASCAR Hall Of Fame Eligibility And Selection Process
posted by Mike Neff
Thursday December 5, 2013
The Sanctioning Body Also Creates New Award For Outstanding Contributions
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Dec. 5, 2013) – NASCAR today announced a number of changes to the selection process for the NASCAR Hall of Fame (NHOF), including a modification to driver eligibility parameters and the creation of a new award to honor significant contributions to the growth and success of the sport.
In all, six changes and updates will be made starting with the selection of the Class of 2015 – all designed to improve upon an already strong process that has led to the selection of 25 deserving inductees.
“We’re very proud of how the NASCAR Hall of Fame has evolved and believe the first five classes reflect the strength of the nominating and voting procedures, with voices from every corner of our industry included in the selection process,” said Brett Jewkes, NASCAR vice president and chief communications officer. “Based on feedback from voters, industry leaders, media who cover our sport and the fans, we believe the changes announced today are a strong recognition of the uniqueness of our sport and will make the overall selection process even stronger in how we honor those who have driven NASCAR to great success on and off the track.”
Following is a summary of changes:
Currently, drivers who have competed in NASCAR for at least 10 years and been retired for three years are eligible for nomination to the NHOF. That will not change.
Moving forward, however, drivers who have competed for a minimum of 10 years and reached their 55th birthday on or before Dec. 31 of the year prior to the nominating year are immediately eligible for the NHOF. Also, any competitor who has competed for 30 or more years in NASCAR competition by Dec. 31 of the year prior to the nominating year is automatically eligible, regardless of age.
Drivers may continue to compete after reaching any of the aforementioned milestones without compromising eligibility for nomination or induction.
Nominating Committee Will Select Five Fewer Nominees for Enshrinement
Throughout its history, the NHOF Nominating Committee has selected 25 nominees each year to be discussed and voted on for NHOF enshrinement. That number will be reduced to 20 starting with the selection process for the 2015 class.
Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR
Beginning with the 2015 class, a new award – Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR – will be initiated to honor significant contributions to the growth and esteem of NASCAR.
Potential Landmark Award recipients could include competitors or those working in the sport as a member of a racing organization, track facility, race team, sponsor, media partner or being a general ambassador for the sport through a professional or non-professional role. Award winners will remain eligible for NHOF enshrinement.
Five nominees will be selected by the NHOF Nominating Committee and then be voted on by the Voting Panel. To win the award, an individual must appear on at least 60 percent of the ballots and no more than one award will be presented annually. Voting for this award will occur immediately following the voting for the NHOF class and be monitored by the same independent accounting firm that oversees NHOF voting.
Nominating Committee to Meet, Vote on 20 NHOF Nominees / Five Landmark Award Nominees
For the first time, the Nominating Committee will meet in person to discuss, debate and vote to create two ballots – the NHOF ballot and the Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR ballot. Previously, the committee submitted nominees via mail to an independent accounting firm that tallies the nominations in order to create the final NHOF ballot.
The Nominating Committee will meet during Speedweeks at Daytona on Friday, Feb. 21, 2014, and the nominees for both ballots will be announced later that day.
Nominees To Be Recused From the Nominating / Voting Process
Any member of the Nominating Committee or Voting Panel who appeared on the previous year’s ballot or current year’s ballot will now be recused from participating in the nominating and / or voting process for as long as he / she appears on the ballot. If an individual who is currently on the Nominating Committee or Voting Panel is inducted, or is no longer included on a final ballot, he or she is immediately reinstated to active participation on the panel(s).
Reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion Added To Voting Panel
As was already announced on Nov. 14 at Homestead-Miami Speedway during the annual NASCAR Championship Contenders Press Conference, the reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion will be added to the following year’s voting panel.
That means Jimmie Johnson, who captured his sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship, will be included in the selection meeting and can cast a vote for the NHOF Class of 2015 on Voting Day, Wednesday, May 21, 2014.
NASCAR Purchases Iowa Speedway
posted by Mike Neff
Wednesday November 27, 2013
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Nov. 27, 2013) – In a strategic move designed to expand its commitment to enhancing event experiences and fan engagement, as well as solidify the future of one of the premier racing and entertainment facilities in the Midwest, NASCAR announced today that it has purchased Iowa Speedway. The agreement, finalized today under a wholly-owned subsidiary, Iowa Speedway, LLC, is effective immediately.
“Iowa Speedway is a great entertainment facility with a very bright future,” said Eric Nyquist, NASCAR vice president, strategic development. “The facility has the support of the region, it’s positioned well in the heart of the Midwest, and year in and year out it provides great short-track racing action for motorsports fans.
“NASCAR ownership will allow us to draw on the entire resources of our company. It also provides us with the opportunity to execute first-hand a number of entertainment ideas and engagement opportunities with fans – much of which we have outlined repeatedly as the core of our Industry Action Plan.”
The facility, located 30 miles east of Des Moines in Newton, features a fast, .875-mile asphalt paved tri-oval designed by NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace. The Speedway released its 2014 schedule earlier this month, encompassing three weekends, one each in May, July and August. The schedule will include two NASCAR Nationwide Series races, a combination NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and IndyCar Series weekend, plus two additional NASCAR K&N Pro Series support races. NASCAR has no plans for Iowa Speedway to host a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race next year or in the immediate future.
NASCAR will host a special event in Des Moines on Thursday, Dec. 12, to outline additional details on the purchase and plans for the future. Information on this event will be announced soon.
The 2014 Iowa Speedway season opens May 17-18, with the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East versus West Challenge on Saturday night. The stars and cars of the NASCAR Nationwide Series then will battle on Sunday in a 250-lap, high-speed contest. The race marks the only Sunday afternoon event of the season at Iowa Speedway.
The new NASCAR Camping World Truck Series / IndyCar Series race weekend at Iowa Speedway is slated for July 11-12. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will race Friday night and feature short-track racing action that has become synonymous with the series in the American Ethanol 200. The first-ever Iowa Corn Indy 300 will follow on Saturday night.
On Friday, Aug. 1, a second NASCAR K&N Pro Series East versus West challenge race will be held followed by a second NASCAR Nationwide Series 250-lap event on Saturday under the lights.
Season ticket holders may renew their tickets for the 2014 season, and will have an exclusive right to secure their current seats until Dec. 14. All other seats are available for purchase immediately, with season ticket prices starting at $95. All season tickets will include a guaranteed seat location, complimentary Casey’s Fan Walk pass and an opportunity to participate in pre-race ceremonies. Season tickets, parking passes and onsite camping options are available online at www.iowaspeedway.com, or by calling the toll-free ticketing hotline, 866-RUSTY-GO (787-8946).
Iowa Speedway’s ticketing office, located at 3333 Rusty Wallace Drive in Newton, also will be open to assist customers from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, holidays excepted.
2014 IOWA SPEEDWAY EVENT SCHEDULE
Saturday, May 17 – NASCAR K&N Pro Series East vs. West Challenge
Friday, July 11 – American Ethanol 200, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Friday, August 1 – NASCAR K&N Pro Series East vs. West Challenge
Stewart-Haas Racing announces reorganization of their Competition Department
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday November 19, 2013
Stewart-Haas Racing is expanding to four teams in the Sprint Cup series for 2014. As a result, the organization is realigning some personnel into new roles within their competition department. The new assignments for 2014 include:
1) Greg Zipadelli has been named Vice President of Competition and will oversee all four Sprint Cup teams. The crew chiefs of the teams will report directly to Zipadelli.
2) Matt Borland has been named Vice President of Engineering. The role will involve Borland overseeing the organization’s technical initiatives and a myriad of research and development projects. As Borland moves into his new role he will become a mentor for the crew chief of the No. 41 Haas Automation team of Kurt Busch.
3) Race Engineer Daniel Knost is being promote to the position of Crew Chief for Busch’s No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet. Knost is an engineer with a Master of Science and PHD in Mechanical Engineering from VPI and Virginia Tech. Knost’s previous roles at SHR included running the team’s seven-post shaker rig, at-track race simulation support and race engineer for both the No. 10 and No. 39 teams.
4) Chad Johnston is going to take over the Crew Chief position for Tony Stewart’s No. 14. Johnston has spent the last three years as Martin Truex Jr.‘s Crew Chief at Michael Waltrip Racing. Johnston brings Hoosier roots to the organization like Stewart. He is a graduate of Indiana State University with a degree in Mechanical Engineering.
5) The Crew Chief for Kevin Harvick’s No. 4 ride in 2014 will be Rodney Childers. Childers moved to SHR in October of 2013 from MWR where he was a Crew Chief for the No. 00 David Reutimann and then the No. 55 for multiple drivers. Childers Crew Chief resume extends back to 2005 when he was the head wrench for MB2/MBV Motorsports with Scott Riggs.
6) Tony Gibson will remain on top of the pit box for Danica Patrick in the No. 10 car for 2014.
Steve Addington is leaving SHR for other opportunities. The word is he will be the Crew Chief for the No. 51, working with his good friend Kevin ‘Bono’ Manion.
2011 Daytona 500 Champion Trevor Bayne Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday November 12, 2013
Daytona 500 winner and Roush Fenway Racing (RFR) driver Trevor Bayne has announced today that he has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Bayne – 22 years old – has undergone extensive testing at the Mayo Clinic and has been cleared by doctors and NASCAR to compete behind the wheel.
“I’ve never been more driven to compete,” said Bayne. “My goals are the same as they’ve been since I started racing. I want to compete at the highest level and I want to win races and championships. I am in the best shape I’ve ever been in and I feel good,” added Bayne. “There are currently no symptoms and I’m committed to continuing to take the best care of my body as possible. I will continue to trust in God daily and know that His plan for me is what is best.”
In 2011, Bayne became the youngest driver in NASCAR history to win the famed Daytona 500. He is currently sixth in the NNS standings, having accumulated one win, six top-five and 20 top-10 finishes in 2013. He will compete again full-time for the NNS championship in 2014, driving the No. 6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang.
In 117 career Nationwide Series races Bayne has two wins, 18 top 5s and 50 top 10s with six poles. Bayne also has 45 career Sprint Cup series starts. In those starts he has the one win in the 2011 Daytona 500, one top 5 and three top 10s.
Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable disease of the central nervous system which interrupts the flow of information within the brain and between the brain and the rest of the body. Symptoms range from reduced or lost mobility to numbness and tingling to blindness and, in extreme cases, paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, and each person diagnosed with MS experiences the disease in a unique way.
Penalties Issued Following Sledgehammer Throw
posted by Phil Allaway
Thursday October 31, 2013
Last Saturday’s Kroger 200 at Martinsville Speedway will likely be best known for Darrell Wallace, Jr.‘s historic victory. However, late in the race, a crash involving Ty Dillon and Kevin Harvick, along with the pit road actions afterward, also made headlines.
Dillon got in the back of Harvick in Turn 2, spinning the Sprint Cup regular out, who then ran into the driver of the No. 3 Chevrolet. Dillon then responded with a number of unsuccessful attempts to spin out Harvick. When both drivers got to pit road, Harvick blocked Dillon’s stall and threw down his window net, prompting a scrum where a sledgehammer was thrown by a member of Dillon’s team at Harvick’s truck.
On Friday morning, NASCAR responded with penalties stemming from the pit road altercation. Marcus Richmond, crew chief of the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, has been fined $10,000 for failing to maintain control of his crew. Meanwhile, crewmember Adam Brown was judged by NASCAR to be the person who three the sledgehammer at Harvick and was suspended indefinitely.
In their press release, NASCAR cited violations of multiple sections of the 2013 Camping World Truck Series Rule Book. The sections cited were 12-1 (Actions Detrimental to Stock Car Racing) and 9-4A (Crew chief resumes responsibility for the actions of his driver, team owner, and team members in addition to himself).
There is no word as of yet from Richard Childress Racing as to whether they plan to appeal the penalties.
Marcos Ambrose to have new sponsor for Dover Cup race in September
posted by Mike Neff
Tuesday October 29, 2013
The current economic environment has seen sponsors cutting back and even leaving the sport. Richard Petty Motorsports announced on Tuesday evening that they will have a new sponsor on the hood for the Dover Cup race and an associate sponsor for half of the season. Stanley and their associated brands Mac and Dewalt will also be back for 2014 on the No. 9 Ford for Marcos Ambrose.
Brian Moffitt, the CEO of Richard Petty Motorsports noted that the company is willing to run an alcohol sponsor on the No. 9 but will never do it on the No. 43. “Richard promised his parents that he’d never run an alcohol or tobacco sponsor on his car and that will hold true as long as we’re an organization.” When he was asked about how this came about he said, “This just kind of happened. There are relationships out there in the marketplace that are always talking with each other. We ended up going to Boston and having a discussion with the company and the next thing you know we are partners.”
Twisted Tea is a division of Boston Beer Company, most famous for the Samuel Adams beer brand. Jon London, the Boston Beer Director of Brand Development was on hand and loves the marriage between Twisted Tea’s customers and NASCAR. “We look at NASCAR and think that they, along with Marcos Ambrose, are just a great fit for the brand. Our drinkers love NASCAR and Marcos is a little bit different, our drinkers are a little different and Marcos is a lot of fun so he’s a great person to represent our brand.”
Moffitt also confirms that, while there are a few openings left on the 2014 calendar for RPM, both Ambrose and Aric Almirola will be back in 2014 and should have all of their races covered by the start of the season.
Darrell Wallace Jr. Scores Significant Victory at Martinsville
posted by Mike Neff
Saturday October 26, 2013
Darrell Wallace, Jr. etched his name in the NASCAR history book under two different columns on Saturday at Martinsville Speedway. Wallace took the checkered flag first to become the second African-American driver in the history of NASCAR to win a National touring series race, and the first to win a Truck Series race. He is also the second graduate of NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity to win a national touring race, following Kyle Larson’s victory at Rockingham Speedway earlier this season.
Wallace led a race-high 96 laps en route to his win. He led three times including the final 50 laps. Wallace outran Brendan Gaughan, Jeb Burton, Ben Kennedy and Ryan Blaney to secure his win. The average age of the top 5 at Martinsville was 23.8 with four of the five drivers being under 22 years of age. Wallace is the second non-Cup driver to win in a Kyle Busch Motorsports truck following Brian Scott’s win at Phoenix last season.
Hamlin Picks Up a Pair of Poles in Martinsville
posted by Amy Henderson
Friday October 25, 2013
Denny Hamlin will start on the pole for Sunday’s Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 at Martinsville Speedway after setting a new track record with a lap time of 19.013 seconds, good for a speed of 99.595 MPH. Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch ran identical second-place times of 190.61 seconds. Johnson will start on the front row after winning the tie-breaker, car owner points, where Johnson currently sits first. Busch will start third, and Matt Kenseth and Clint Bowyer round out the top 5. Joey Logano, Jamie McMurray, David Ragan, Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick complete the top 10.
The pole is Hamlin’s 17th in 288 races. It’s also his fifth of 2013, a career-best for Hamlin, whose season was interrupted by a back injury earlier in the year.
In all, 18 drivers broke the previous track record, set in the spring race this year by Johnson. Bowyer broke the 100 MPH mark in practice, but no driver was able to duplicate that in time trials. The Sprint Cup drivers will have a pair of practice sessions on Saturday before Sunday’s 500-lap event.
Seven Chase drivers qualified inside the top 10, and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Carl Edwards clocked in in 12th and 14th, respectively. Other Chase drivers include Ryan Newman (17th), Kasey Kahne (25th), and Greg Biffle (33rd).
Hamlin wasn’t done after his Sprint Cup qualifying effort. NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers took their time trials after the Cup teams had their shot, and Hamlin duplicated his earlier effort, snagging the pole for the Kroger 250 in the No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports entry. Johnny Sauter, Darrell Wallace, Jr., Ron Hornaday, Jr., and Ty Dillon round out the top 5 for Saturday’s race.
2014 Camping World Truck Series Schedule announced
posted by Amy Henderson
Friday October 25, 2013
NASCAR announced the 2014 Camping World Truck Series schedule today at Martinsville Speedway. The series will run 22 events in 2014 starting at Daytona on February 21st and concluding at Homestead on November 14th. The schedule includes stops at New Hampshire Motorspeedway and Gateway Motorsports Park next year. The series will once again turn right and left at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park along with slinging mud for the second consecutive year at Eldora Speedway.
2014 Camping World Trucks Series Schedule
Feb 21 Daytona
Tweet Lands Another Driver In Trouble
posted by Phil Allaway
Thursday October 24, 2013
NASCAR announced on Wednesday that Corey LaJoie has been placed on probation after posting an inappropriate tweet on Twitter last week. He will have to attend sensitivity training as prescribed by NASCAR.
In their statement, NASCAR stated that LaJoie is being penalized for “an insensitive and intolerable communication” posted on Twitter on October 15. The tweet, which has since been deleted, suggested that the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) should conduct a cavity search on a man wearing a turban.
Wednesday afternoon, LaJoie tweeted out a statement.
“I am very sorry for those offended by my recent remark,” LaJoie tweeted. “It was an immature & insensitive comment. I am upset with myself and how this has affected what has been a very positive year in my career.”
This incident marks the second time this season that NASCAR has penalized a driver for comments on social media. Earlier this season, Nelson Piquet, Jr. was forced to attend sensitivity training after using a homophobic slur in the comments section of an Instagram picture that Parker Kligerman posted.
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Dennis Michelsen · Tuesday April 5, 2005
Shane Hmiel, You Are a Punk
All the changes NASCAR has made over the years have challenged my loyalty to my favorite sport. But the one reason it is still my favorite is the fact that other sports nowadays are filled with punks. Allen Iverson is a talented basketball player but I would never root for him. Why? Because Mr. Iverson is a 100% certified PUNK. I could go on and on but you get the idea. But now NASCAR has a young gun in the Busch series that is raising PUNK-dom to an all time high level in the sport. Shane Hmiel has turned into a disgrace!
Oh sure the kid has talent but the same can be said of thousands of guys racing on the local short tracks that never get handed the opportunity Hmiel has gotten. Just for fun I would love to see Ricky Bilderback, the short track ace from Rockford Speedway, take on Shane Hmiel in a match race. Ricky is so good that back in 2001 track president Jack Deery announced a “bounty” of $500 for any driver that could beat Bilderback! Put these guys in equally prepared cars on a short track like Rockford and I would bet on Ricky Bilderback… and he wouldn’t have to wreck Hmiel to beat him.
Everyone knows the history of Shane Hmiel’s mysterious drug suspension after a race in Richmond. Any other driver would have been virtually banned from the sport for such an infraction. But having access to DEI motors thanks to his Dad, Shane Hmiel has been in high demand. Yes he can get the job done on the track but at what price? NASCAR has always been about respect. Drivers earned that respect from their fellow drivers on the way up the ladder. Buckshot Jones had a reputation of being a rough and sometimes out of control driver but he was never a punk. Has there been a race in any NASCAR series this year where Hmiel hasn’t ticked someone off with his actions?
This latest incident in Bristol by Shane Hmiel deserves a quick and harsh punishment by NASCAR! It was not so much wrecking Dale Jarrett but Hmiel’s punkish attitude after the fact. Just imagine if he had flipped the bird at Dale Jarrett while DJ was dressing him down for his actions. But no in true PUNK fashion Shane Hmiel waited until DJ’s back was turned and then gave him the one finger salute. When asked after the race about Jarrett’s promise that his actions were, “Going to cost him one day,” Hmiel then added insult to injury. “He’d better hurry up,” Hmiel said about 48-year-old Jarrett’s threat to get him later. “He doesn’t have much longer.”
Where is the respect for a NASCAR champion? Can you imagine what the employer of Hmiel’s Dad would have said about that if he were alive to have heard that? NASCAR better sit this kid for a good long time so he can think about what his punk attitude will do to this sport! But since his Dad is so well connected I doubt they will do much more than give him a fine.
Rules Review After Five Races
Five races are in the books and it is time to look back at how well NASCAR’s changes have worked so far. There were three major rules changes for this season so let’s take them one by one. Once again this is just one “FANS” opinion and I would hope you will jump in with your comments if you agree or disagree.
Qualifying Rules- Top 35 Get an Automatic Starting Spot
In the ideal world I would love to see the fastest 43 drivers race every week. But we have to face the reality that this is a sponsor and personality driven sport. Asking a company to shell out over $10 Million every season they better be assured they will see their car race on Sunday. Overall I think this rule has worked out pretty good. In a few races we even had the fastest 43 drivers race, which is something we seldom saw with the old provisional rules. If I was to suggest a change I would lower the number to 30 but even using NASCAR’s 35 I think this rule has worked better than our old provisional system.
Spoiler Height- This rule change making the spoilers smaller has not been uniform across the board in how it affected teams. The Dodge teams got approval of their new nose based on the old spoiler height. Losing some spoiler has left Dodge teams scrambling to find the right balance on their cars. Eventually they will figure it out but they started the 2005 season behind the Chevy and Ford teams. NASCAR has done the right thing by resisting making any adjustment to the rule so far this year and I do hope they will stick with the same rule on spoiler height all season.
Gear Ratios- This was probably the least talked about rule change but has had the biggest affect on racing so far this season. The idea was to take away some of the big money teams advantage on motor design by limiting how many RPMs they could pull using the new gear ratio rule to set the limits. This rule change has backfired on NASCAR a bit with some teams that were strong in the motor department in the past by pulling more RPMs lagging a bit behind. Meanwhile the two teams with the most money to throw at the motor departments, Roush-Yates and Hendricks have benefited the most. Again I hope NASCAR doesn’t make any changes since Evernham and Gibbs are already closing the gap.
NASCAR is always tinkering with the rules but this time overall I think they got the rule changes right. Now if they can only find a way to dumb down the aero on these cars we might get back to even better racing!
©2000 - 2008 Dennis Michelsen and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
I love the commentary on the qualifying rules. Sure, we complained about them, before we saw them in action. But overall, I agree that it seems to be working better so far than the old provisional rules. It also seems that competition has stepped up in quals, making it a little more exciting (as much as it can be for just one car, two laps).
Sure we still may not understand it totally (the Monday Busch race starting grid explanation went WAY over my head), but that’s half of NASCAR. Each time something was implemented, fans knocked it without understanding, but sometimes, just sometimes, NASCAR gets it right.
Shane probley is a punk as you call him but Dale’s walking around the track with the camera’s on him are a tad old too…I do think maybe due to Dale’s age and all Shane should have shown him respect..By getting out of the car and meeting him halfway instead of saluting him as he walked off.
Hey Dennis, check out Allen Iverson this year. playing great and acting good to.
Enjoy your Odds& Ends. Terry
That wreck and Shane’s ensuing reaction were more due to Jarret’s actions than Hmiel’s. While I like DJ, he provoked the response he got. Maybe Nascar will fine Hmiel in this climate of right-wing conservatism, but that shouldn’t get him the backhanded knee-jerk reaction from all the fans. He didn’t make those cars in front of DJ tangle. Didn’t Jarret spin someone out? I think so. Truex deserved what he got but should have been parked and fined as he made the Spencer mistake of announcing it on the radio. And I don’t hear anyone complaining about Waltrip when he took out somebody during the race. Maybe that’s because he can’t drive and belongs somewhere other than Cup!
The fact remains that the Cup drivers are ruining the Busch Series. And now with the Czars of Nascar talking about a “Chase” for the series, the Thieves/outlaws/millionaire drivers of the Cup world can come and ruin the true intention of the development Busch arena. Remember, 7 of the top ten finishers on Monday’s race were Buschwackers. And Hmiel’s right, DJ better hurry up, he is getting old!!!
I was laughing and cheering as DJ walked over to Shane’s car…it’s so refreshing to see drivers show an honest emotional response to an incident, and that’s why we love Bristol…plenty of high tempers abound. I knew DJ wasn’t walking over there to punch out a man sitting in his car…so did the officials, who just walked along with him, rather than trying to stop him. Why not let him voice his opinion?
Shane’s opinion (bird, AND post-race), however, smacked of a complete and utter disrespect for those who could help him in his move into the Cup series…he’s going to find out the hard way that he’s cutting off valuable resources for himself.
I agree Dennis; if Shane keeps on going the way he is, he’s going to find out that even all Daddy’s connections can’t buy him respect.
You were talking about connections and how you have to be more than an average driver to get a seat regardless of your name…I don’t deny that Hmiel has talent, but he has no idea what to do with it…he’s either up front or in the wall, he’s rarely consistent. Even though he is a good driver, most teams wouldn’t put up with his crap if it wasn’t for the fact that apparently signing Hmiel gaurantees you DEI support.
And I would like you to clarify something, when you talk about Waltrip and Wallace getting their rides because of their names, you do agree that they have earned them and have talent, right?
Like you said, he has talent. Didn’t you see the way he ran Bobby Hamilton into that wall last year in the truck race? As to your last question, K.Wallace, M.Wallace and M.Waltrip are just average. But I would say that Waltrip is actually below average because of the quality of the organization for which he drives. Since joining DEI in ‘01, his average start is 18.4, average finish 20.6. You tell me that’s not average? And only 4 wins on restrictor plate tracks solely due to DEI’s technological advantage at those tracks. And who gave Waltrip his best start last year in the Busch series? Hmiel when he qualified 3rd for Waltrip at Nazareth. Yes, Mikey is average and got the ride because of his name, just like he gets the sponsors that way. Riding the coattails of his brother’s accomplishments. Granted, being the 2-time winner of the Daytona 500 has helped him. But if he wasn’t with DEI it would be hard to believe he would have even gotten those wins.
I watched the race again this morning. Hmiel got into the back of DJ, but then never let off! It was as deliberate of a spin as I’ve seen in a long time.
Oh, and did everyone forget about the other two cars that Hmiel ‘pushed’ out of the way in order to get behind DJ in the first place!
Even the announcers kept mentioning all the cars that Shane put the bump to in the LAST 20 LAPS!
Same kind of incident. Wreck up ahead. Someone checked in front of Waltrip and he hit them hard. Where’s his criticism?
You make a very good point, however I also believe if the Cup Drivers left the circut completly NASCAR would have a hard time filling out the field. “43 cars would probably become 35 or less.” Next thing you know it will look like the the Indy Racing League. Need I say more. You see Bush as a development series, I see it as entertainment. Now looking at your name it would seem you are a very strong Hmiel supporter. At first I too wanted to see him succeed but now considering his actions with DJ, I just like to see him wreck because at this point he doens’t deserve to win. Maybe someday but not now.
Hmiel haters will be Hmiel haters. Just like those that don’t like other drivers. Hmiel will get past it. The question is, if and when Jarret retaliates, will that make everyone happy and is it right? Bottom line, if anyone is happy because someone gets intentionally wrecked for any reason then they’re not a race fan. You should be at the demolition derby. If anyone thinks Hmiel wrecked DJ purposefully, then they’re not being realistic. They’re just looking for someone to hate. If one wants to see what it looks like to see someone get spun intentionally, just reverse the tape till you see Truex spin Bodine. And then go back some more and tell me Bodine intentionally ran Truex into the wall. Listen to what Truex said on the radio. Now that’s respecting a veteran driver.
Just like Bodine in Truex’s mind, Hmiel does not get the benefit of the doubt. He’s in the wrong, regardless of what really happened, put there by all the Shane shamers. Whatever.
It seems like this would be a more appropriate place for this type of debate. Thanks!
Here at Frontstretch we do allow EVERYONE to share their opinions with the fans. How have we censored you? I happen to disagree with you but I did respond via e-mail which shows, I hope, that we value your participation in the debate!
It appeared to me DJ was not happy about Hmiel’s driving from more than one incident. If anyone listens to DJ on the scanner or follows him – it takes more than a smack to get him fired up. He was upset at Hmiel for more than that. I am thinking he saw him on the track all day doing things.
I think Hmiel has a hell of a lot of talent but needs more lap time. The races in BGN are longer than he needs at this time. A couple years in the trucks would do him good. He is definately not ready to move to Cup. A driver can not drive as Shane does in Cup. Those races demand car control and driver control. He lacks that at this time. Maybe he is in too good of equipment. Give him Morgan’s car for a few weeks and make him realize that he has to first finish. ( BTW – I mean no disrepsect to Morgan, everyone knows he is underfunded.)
It is one thing to be an aggressive driver, but it is another to be a jackass and a druggie in the process. As hard as NASCAR and the sponsors work at projecting a clean cut image, it makes me wonder why they dont cut his garage pass in half and keep him away from a race car.
Thanks for your cooperation and for visiting The Frontstretch!
I can’t wait for him to make to Cup, then he can have a whole new fan base to tick off.
Dennis no longer contributes to the Frontstretch, but you can Dennis's commentary at his website bio and archive page.