NASCAR Changes Qualifying Format
posted by Summer Bedgood
Tuesday March 11, 2014
Following safety concerns regarding NASCAR’s new qualifying format, the sanctioning body is introducing some changes in preparation for this weekend’s race at Bristol Motor Speedway. According to the Associated Press, NASCAR is banning teams from cool-down laps after their qualifying attempts, but will instead be allowed to hook up cool-down units to the engine through hood flaps.
Late Tuesday afternoon, a release from NASCAR fully detailed the changes. Teams will be allowed a single cool down unit to be connected through the right or left side hood flap, however the hood must remain closed. Additionally, two crew members will be allowed over the wall while cooling down.
“The qualifying is new to all of us and as we have said over the past several weeks, we are looking at it from all aspects,” said Robin Pemberton, vice president of competition and racing development. “Following discussions, both internally and with others in the garage area, we moved quickly to make a few revisions that will be effective starting with our two national series events at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. We believe this will only enhance and improve what has demonstrated to be an exciting form of qualifying for our fans, competitors and others involved with the sport. Moving forward we will continue to look at it and address anything else that we may need to as the season unfolds.”
The move comes after three weeks of NASCAR’s new knockout qualifying system, where multiple cars are allowed to make qualifying attempts at the same time instead of the traditional one-car-at-a-time procedure. Drivers and teams had complained that the new rules didn’t allow them to cool their engines down on pit road, and the cool-down laps caused a dangerous situation with slower cars staying on the track at the same time that other cars were running by them at much higher speeds.
The rule will begin this weekend in Bristol, a track that has a much narrower racing surface than Daytona, Phoenix, and Las Vegas.
Kurt Busch to Attempt The Indianapolis-Charlotte Double
posted by Phil Allaway
Tuesday March 4, 2014
Andretti Autosport announced this morning that Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet in the Sprint Cup Series, will attempt the Indianapolis 500 in a fifth entry for the IndyCar Series team. Once the Indianapolis 500 is completed, Busch will fly from Indianapolis to Charlotte, jump in his No. 41 Chevrolet and compete in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Busch considers the opportunity to do the double as an old-school throwback moment.
“This is really to challenge myself within motorsports,” Busch said in Andretti Autosport’s press release. “Perhaps I am a bit of an old-school racer; a throwback, I guess. I enjoyed the era of drivers racing different cars and testing themselves in other series. It is tough to do now for a variety of factors, but when the opportunity is there, I want to do it. While NASCAR is my home, I have been fortunate to compete in Pro Stock on the NHRA circuit a number of years ago and test a V8 Supercar. This opportunity was a talk with Michael [Andretti] over dinner one night, a “What if,” and now it’s becoming a reality for me to drive in the Indy 500 with Andretti Autosport. It’s literally a dream come true. To go to the famous Brickyard with the iconic Andretti name, it doesn’t get much cooler or better than that.”
Busch will be doing the Indianapolis-Charlotte double as a Memorial Day mission to men and women serving in the U.S. Military via the Armed Forces Foundation. Fans can contribute to the cause by texting AFF to 50555 to donate $10.
Busch, who has never raced an IndyCar, passed Rookie Orientation at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway last year during a test session. At the time, Busch was more or less testing the Dallara DW12 for fun.
Busch will be the fourth driver to attempt the Indianapolis-Charlotte double. John Andretti was the first driver to attempt it in 1994. After finishing four laps down in tenth in Indianapolis, Andretti crashed and had engine problems in the 600. Robby Gordon has attempted the double five times, most recently in 2004. However, Gordon failed to make it to Charlotte on time and did not start the 600 in 2000 (P.J. Jones started Gordon’s No. 13 Ford in that instance). Finally, Tony Stewart has attempted the double twice (most recently in 2001) and is the only driver to ever complete all 1100 miles. Neither of the three drivers has won either leg of the double. The best finishes are Stewart and Gordon’s sixth-place finishes at the Indianapolis 500 (although Gordon’s came in 2000, the year he didn’t make it to Charlotte in time to start the Coca-Cola 600), and Stewart’s fourth-place finish in the 2001 Coca-Cola 600.
Danica Patrick, Justin Allgaier Talk About Phoenix Incident
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Tuesday March 4, 2014
A disappointing start to the year for Danica Patrick won’t include continued conflict. Patrick met with rookie Justin Allgaier Sunday, shortly after the Phoenix Cup race after a wreck ruined both drivers’ days. Patrick, who was critical of the No. 51 car on the radio, claiming Allgaier was “driving all over the track” appeared receptive to a conversation that quickly settled differences over what will be a long season.
“She was just upset because she got involved in the crash that we had,’’ said Allgaier to the Motor Racing Network. “She says she’s been through this and that she felt like I needed to settle down at that point. I explained my position on why everything happened. I think she understood where I was coming from. It doesn’t fix either one of our racecars. It doesn’t fix either one of our days. Unfortunately, we were both having pretty decent days.’’
Allgaier wound up 30th due to the incident while Patrick was 36th. The incident, which was caused by Allgaier’s spin also involved the No. 32 team and Travis Kvapil, which wound up 38th after sustaining heavy damage.
Camping World Close to Extending Title Sponsorship of NCWTS
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Tuesday March 4, 2014
Marcus Lemonis, CEO of Camping World, Grand Marshal of Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Raceway, and star of CNBC’s “The Profit,” made the announcement over the weekend that the retailer is very close to announcing a deal that would continue its title sponsorship of NASCAR’s Truck Series. The original agreement with NASCAR is scheduled to conclude after the 2015 season.
According to the sanctioning body, no formal contract has been signed, but “the agreement between the two parties has proven to be a beneficial one.”
“In about a month, we’ll be announcing a significant extension to that contract. It’s been great for us,” said Camping World’s Lemonis in a statement. “The NASCAR relationship has worked well for Camping World. When we started, we had 35 stores. Now, we’re up to 120 stores. As we travel the country and we meet new customers in stores, they always are very appreciative of our relationship with NASCAR. It’s been good.”
Gaining a long-term commitment from Camping World to sponsor the Truck Series would be a relief for NASCAR, which is set to lose Nationwide Insurance as title sponsor for the NASCAR Nationwide Series at the end of the 2014 season. The sponsorship of the Cup Series by Sprint runs through 2016.
The NCWTS is back in action on March 29th at 2:30 PM (ET) when the trucks visit Martinsville Speedway in the Kroger 250, which can be seen on Fox Sports 1. Ratings for the season opener were up 11 percent.
Harvick Takes Win At Phoenix In Second Race With New Team
posted by Justin Tucker
Monday March 3, 2014
Phoenix International Raceway has become Kevin Harvick’s home away from home. Sunday Afternoon was no exception as Harvick charged to the front early and would dominate for much of the day, leading 224 of the scheduled 312 laps to record his record fifth win on the one mile oval and his third win in the last four races at Phoenix.
Harvick, coming off of a disappointing Speedweeks which was capped by a last lap crash in the Daytona 500 in his debut with Stewart-Haas Racing, set the tone on Saturday by winning both practices while having the best 5 and 10-lap averages in the first practice of the day on Saturday. On Sunday, Harvick and his No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet was nothing short of flawless as he was able to hold Dale Earnhardt, Jr. by .489 seconds after a late race restart to claim his 24th career Sprint Cup Series victory.
“Man, this is awesome,” Harvick said after his dominant victory on Sunday. “Man, this just solidifies so many things and so many decisions. It’s been so much work with all the time and effort that these guys (the crew) have put in—but what a race car.”
Stewart Haas Racing co-owner Gene Haas shared in Harvick’s excitement after the race.
“It took long enough,” Haas joked. “This is phenomenal. I think there was a lot of skepticism last year about what myself and Tony (Stewart) what we were up to, was there a lot of madness to this. Quite frankly, it’s a great team, there’s a lot of synergy at the shop, people working together. I don’t know what we did, but I think we put together a great organization.”
Daytona 500 winner Dale Earnhardt, Jr. continued his hot start to the 2014 season. Earnhardt Jr. would finish second on Sunday, marking his seventh consecutive top 10 finish since the end of the 2013 season. Earnhardt Jr. was pleased with the effort after a coast-to-coast whirlwind week after winning his second Daytona 500 and also gave great praise to the efforts of Harvick and the No. 4 team.
“I’ve got to congratulate Kevin. Those guys were two-tenths faster than everyone all weekend in practice. They were just phenomenal,” Earnhardt said. “To be able to run with them all day was a big confidence builder for us.”
Joining Harvick and Earnhardt in the top 5 of The Profit on CNBC 500K were Brad Keselowski with his second consecutive top 3 run of 2014 in third. Keselowski’s Team Penske teammate Joey Logano would finish fourth, and Jeff Gordon would come home fifth in his No. 24 Pepsi Max Chevrolet.
Jimmie Johnson finished in sixth, followed by Ryan Newman with a nice rebound after Daytona in seventh. Carl Edwards would carry the banner for Roush Fenway Racing by finishing eighth, Kyle Busch was ninth, and Jamie McMurray would finish tenth.
A look at the Profit on CNBC 500K by the numbers. There were 14 lead changes among eight different drivers, there were eight cautions for 39 laps which slowed the race pace to 109.229 MPH.
Next Sunday, the Sprint Cup Series heads to Sin City and the Las Vegas Motor
Starting Lineup: The Profit On CNBC 500K
posted by Thomas Bowles
Saturday March 1, 2014
Drivers in RED (i) are those ineligible to collect Sprint Cup points
Daytona 500 TV Ratings Down
posted by Frontstretch Staff
Wednesday February 26, 2014
What was the longest weather delay in Daytona 500 history turned out to bring NASCAR lower ratings and TV viewership Sunday night than expected. According to a report Monday from FOX Sports, the 56th running of the Daytona 500 airing at 8 PM (ET) posted a 5.6/10 national household rating/share which averaged 9.3 million viewers. That’s down 44 percent from last year’s 9.9, easily making it the least-watched Daytona 500 of all-time.
Due to the six-hour, twenty-two minute rain delay in Daytona, the race was up against the primetime coverage of the Winter Olympics Closing Ceremony from Sochi, Russia on NBC (15.25 million viewers). FOX also reported that 69% of the pre-rain delay viewers of the race, which began at 1 PM (ET) kept tuning in.
In comparison, the 2013 Daytona 500 on FOX was the most-watched race in five years, posting a 9.9/22 rating/share, commanding 16.7 million viewers. The Daytona 500 in 2012, the first to ever be run on a Monday and in the primetime slot did a 7.7/13 overnight rating/share which resulted in 13.67 million households viewing the race according to Nielsen TV ratings data.
Earnhardt, Jr. Claims Second Daytona 500 Victory
posted by Justin Tucker
Wednesday February 26, 2014
Ten years is a long time. For Dale Earnhardt, Jr., it felt like an eternity. NASCAR’s Most Popular Driver endured many near misses and close calls at the Daytona 500 since his only win in the Great American Race in 2004. Earnhardt had finished second in two of his last three Daytona 500s coming into Sunday’s race. He was also riding the tail of a 55-race winless streak, dating back to Michigan in 2012.
However nothing would stop Dale Jr. on Sunday, not even a 6 hour and 22 minute rain delay from capturing his second Daytona 500 win. Earnhardt Jr. led a race-high 54 laps on the evening and used some timely drafting help from teammates Jimmie Johnson and, on the final restart, Jeff Gordon to separate from the pack and secure the victory.
“Winning this race is the greatest feeling that you could feel in this sport besides accepting the trophy for the championship,” said a jubilant Earnhardt after pulling into Victory Lane. “We could fight off battle after battle. We got a little help at the end there from Jeff to get away on the restart. This is amazing. I can’t believe this is happening. I never take this for granted, man because it doesn’t happen twice, let alone once.”
Aside from the race itself the big story of the race was the 6 hour and 22 minute red flag, which threatened to move the race to Monday evening (had the race been postponed, FOX Sports’ Chris Myers had tweeted that the race would resume at 5:00pm EST). However, Mother Nature would cooperate and would allow the race to be run under different conditions from which they practiced this week. Once the race resumed, the intensity picked up from the changing track conditions. This allowed the pack to race side-by-side and at times 3-wide up to seven rows deep.
Joining Earnhardt Jr. in the top 5 for the 2014 Daytona 500 were: Denny Hamlin who closed out a spectacular Speedweeks in second, Brad Keselowski in third, Jeff Gordon in fourth, and Jimmie Johnson who overcome two wrecks leading up to the 500 in fifth.
Rounding out the top 10 in the Daytona 500 were Matt Kenseth in sixth, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. in seventh and Greg Biffle would bring his No. 16 Ford home in eighth. Austin Dillon would come home ninth in his first Cup Series race in the iconic No. 3 for Richard Childress Racing, while Casey Mears would round out the top 10.
A couple of major contenders for the Daytona 500 win would see their hopes dashed early on as Martin Truex, Jr. would blow up just 30 laps into the race, relegating him to a 43rd-place finish in his debut for Furniture Row Racing. Crew chief Todd Berrier was already in Nashville for a test session before the race was even over. Kyle Busch, meanwhile would have a pit road violation just before halfway and would spend much of the race battling back from that mistake. Busch would eventually finish 19th after leading 19 laps.
Danica Patrick would also be bit by bad luck as she was caught up in a multi-car wreck on lap 145. Patrick would lead her second consecutive Daytona 500, but wouldn’t have the finish to show for it finishing 40th. Tony Stewart would encounter a frustrating evening as well, with a fuel pickup problem derailing his quest for his first Daytona 500 win. Stewart would finish 35th.
A look at the Daytona 500 by the numbers. There were 42 lead changes among 18 drivers, while seven cautions for 39 laps would slow the race pace to 145.290 MPH.
Next week, the Sprint Cup Series heads to the “diamond in the desert,” Phoenix International Raceway for The Profit on CNBC 500K. The Green flag is scheduled for 3:15pm EST.
Nationwide Series Post-Race Quotes: Drive4COPD 300
posted by Thomas Bowles
Tuesday February 25, 2014
Frontstretch Interviews – Courtesy Mike Neff
ELLIOTT SADLER – FINISHED 4th
Thoughts on the race?
It’s definitely a lot different racing than what we’re used to.
Comfortable with it?
Yeah, it’s just different. You’re worried about what you’re doing, but you’re also worried about what everyone else is doing and they’re not doing more than you’re doing. Physically pushing a guy is way better than just riding so you just gotta time it right and push it to the edge.
Happy to start the year with a top 5?
Yeah. Hell, that was the worst we ran all day, I think. I have no idea how they put the 3 car in front of us on that last restart. I hadn’t seen the 3 car hardly all day. When they put us from fifth to sixth, on the outside line, it just really boxed us in. I would have really restarted behind my teammate and given him a good push to the front. Anyways, it is what it is; we’ll take it and move on.
Looked like you were up front all day.
The guys did a good job. We had a fast race car. Great pit stops, just really proud of these guys. The car’s in one piece and we can take it to Talladega now. Great job by my guys. A lot of effort came into coming down here to Daytona and giving ourselves a shot to win. We had that chance to be up front and make some things happen. Fifth is not what we want, but we’ll take it and move on.
Bumping vs Pushing?
It’s way harder. You don’t want to lay on the guy in front of you, so it’s tough racing. A lot different than what we’re used to, ‘cause you gotta go. You gotta drag the brake too ‘cause you don’t want to hit the guys and you don’t want to stay on him. It’s a lot harder mentally than what we’ve done in the past.
Car was strong all day. Pushing vs. Bumping, is that harder to do than just getting on somebody and pushing them?
Yeah, it is a little bit. When you bump ‘em, you jar ‘em, it kinda jacks ‘em a little bit. It’s a little more abrupt, obviously. I thought it was OK there at the end. It was certainly fun and hopefully entertaining. But a little bit of a struggle in the early part of the race and the midpart of the race to see a good race. And that’s unfortunate for the fans. You can’t do that the whole race, you can’t tear up your stuff, knock your grill in, overheat your motor, all that stuff so there’s no sense in doing all that until you get down to the last lap. The 7 and the 6, they did a good job. Man, the 7 really held the 22 and I tight on the bottom. I was rubbing his door and hitting the apron at the same time, no room whatsoever. So it was good; wish we were the ones who could have won but a lot better now than what we were last year.
Going home in one piece makes it a lot better, right?
Yeah. My back feels good. My foot feels good. Past years here, I’ve been going home with pain so I’m alright.
Connect with Mike!
2014 Truck Series Post-Race Quotes: Daytona (Exclusives)
posted by Thomas Bowles
Saturday February 22, 2014
When you’re on the outside like that, how frustrating is it?
It’s so hard. Timothy Peters has won here. Kyle Busch has won everywhere. Ron Hornaday has been running Trucks forever, probably before I was even born. I was surrounded by veterans there, and like I told them I don’t have a rookie stripe but I’m a rookie. This is only my fourth Truck race ever, my fourth superspeedway race, and man, I figured out when the 17 got up in front of me, I pushed him. And as soon as I pushed him, he took off. And I went with him. And I just kept doing it, and before I knew it, he was leading. And I saw Ron in my mirror, backed up to him, and if it wasn’t for him, I don’t know what would have happened. I gotta thank him big time for that. That was a true teammate move right there. I really appreciate that. He just bounced off me and we got to the front. I tried my hardest to sidedraft Kyle. I was probably touching his door.
Top 5 in the No. 30 truck. This deal come together at the last minute, but you had a heck of a truck. Tell us about your night.
Yeah, I’ve got to thank Turner Scott Motorsports. The guys worked so hard on this Rheem Comfort Products Chevrolet. Exciting! Just got hung up on the outside and had to wait for my teammate there to catch up. And then he got to the bottom, so… I got the old 32 and started pushing ol’ Ryan to the front. So, it’s not bad. We’ll take it. You just don’t want to step over that boundary. You don’t know how far to push and shove. We bumped about six times down the straightaway without latching onto them. Hopefully, that was OK and we came home with a top 5.
Connect with Mike!
Check in with Matt and Jay on their site at CareyandCoffey.com.
Former NASCAR driver and current TV commentator Jimmy Spencer recently addressed a crowded media center for a modifieds celebration to answer questions, and while speaking, he showed some disdain for some of the younger drivers in NASCAR today. His big beef is that the young guys today don’t appreciate what drivers in his day did for the sport.
Here is part of Spencer’s harangue: “The sport has really grown, these young kids come along, and there are some really good young kids. There are some punk young kids. I just wish they would realize and respect what others did. I think it’s just a total attitude problem that they have. Their dad needs to take them behind the fence and smack them around a little bit. Our world’s lacking respect, and I hope these kids learn that.”
My opinion on the drivers’ importance to the sport relative to its management notwithstanding, I can confidently say that NASCAR could have grown itself just fine without Jimmy Spencer.
Often when maturing people compare the eras of entertainment of their youth—sport, music or otherwise—with the eras of today, they tend to give more credit than deserved to the games and shows and songs and the behavior of the stars of their time. How often do you hear how awful Saturday Night Live is today compared to its former glory? Does anyone remember how bad the shows that featured Chevy Chase and John Belushi could be? I’m old enough to and I never did think Killer Bees was a funny bit.
Still, I’m not going to lie and say I don’t wax nostalgic for my own era of music on occasion, especially when a cretin is driving down my street blasting hip-hop loud enough for people in neighboring continents to hear. Then I remember that the music of my era included Duran Duran and Quiet Riot. I would be lying if I said I missed my high school classmates telling me how great they were.
In my youth, back when NASCAR shared ABC’s Wide World of Sports with horrific ski-jumping attempts, I would occasionally watch a race. I remember that most of the competitors then were at the age where today a sponsor would likely be demanding that they be replaced. The stars, guys like Yarborough, Waltrip, Petty, and Allison, were all in their 30s and 40s.
Then Wonderboy came along and started beating everyone, and the age demographic of the sport turned upside down. Today a driver in his 40s (Richard Petty was 42 when he won his last championship in 1979, 13 years before he retired) had better be consistently performing at a high level if he wants to keep his ride, regardless of the quality of his equipment. Just ask Sterling Marlin.
It is good for the sport when a young kid comes along and does really well. Kasey Kahne put on a fantastic show in his rookie year, and seeing Kyle Busch become the youngest Cup race winner was a thrill. Most of us are looking forward to seeing what Joey Logano can do at the Cup level. The young guns have been the biggest boon to this sport since the Intimidator came along.
The problem comes when these kids are seen as lacking a level of maturity that goes with success and fame. And those perceptions aren’t entirely without merit. Carl Edwards lost some of his shine after his post-race incidents with Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Matt Kenseth. Kyle Busch may have been speaking candidly in his assessment of the new car after winning its first race at Bristol, but it rubbed plenty of people the wrong way. Denny Hamlin has done his fair share of alienating his pit crew.
But the old-timers that point out the lack of respect that comes from today’s drivers don’t mention Kasey Kahne, whose most controversial moment after four and a half years racing in Cup has been his wearing of a very questionable fire suit for an Allstate spot. Or David Ragan, who has a fairly humble attitude and hasn’t caused an ounce of trouble as he has been gradually improving at the Cup level, never complaining about being called a “dart without feathers” by veteran Tony Stewart. Ryan Newman hardly has a reputation for being arrogant. Casey Mears is one of the best-liked drivers in the garage. Very few fans put fiery comments on NASCAR message boards deriding Jamie McMurray. There are people who dislike Jimmie Johnson, but it’s mostly because of the No. 48 team’s highly creative interpretations of the rule book, not because anyone considers Johnson disrespectful of the veterans or of the sport.
Hamlin, Edwards and the brothers Busch have earned some anti-fans with their apparent cockiness and some heat-of-the-moment incidents on and off the track. You can’t blame this entirely on them, or even on youth for that matter. They have been made wealthy and famous practically overnight, and not only is that a difficult adjustment (albeit one that I would be happy to try to make), but sudden affluence at any age often affords freedom from the maturity of understanding public perception. They are held publicly accountable for their failings, fairly or not, by racing fans, writers, and commentators—and it would be naïve to suggest that jealousy never figures into that equation. Not to mention that any perceived “arrogance” will likely be hugely blown out of proportion by fans of any driver with whom they might have an altercation.
Spencer’s rant brings back memories—fond memories, to some—of his breaking Kurt Busch’s nose some years ago. Kurt’s biggest crime when he was a young buck was getting into a feud with Spencer, at one point viciously calling him a “decrepit old never-was” after an on-track incident.
Maybe that whole episode still sticks some in Spencer’s craw. Spencer labeled it as disrespect for one’s elders, which Busch’s comment certainly was, but punching someone in the face while he is still strapped in a racecar isn’t exactly the behavior of an experienced and wise adult either. Both parties did their share of wrong.
Spencer wasn’t one of the sport’s revered icons, but fans at the time seemed to be in the corner of the veteran rather than the hotshot youth anyway, and I expect it was that way around the garage, too. Kevin Harvick, at the time a young gun himself, called Busch an arrogant punk during his spat with Mongo.
As these “disrespectful” young guys are around the sport longer, most of them will eventually win plenty of fans, whether they modify their attitude or not. Tony Stewart really hasn’t changed much from the temperamental artist that he was in his first couple of years, especially in his sometimes justified and always amusing disdain for many of us in the racing press. But after two championships and proving that he belongs among the greats, he has earned plenty of respect from fans, even the ones that dislike him. Carl Edwards hasn’t been around long enough to have that respect yet. As a result, after Tony took Carl out at Pocono two years ago in an incident where Stewart was clearly in the wrong, there were quite a few who sided with Stewart. I expect had it been the other way around and Edwards was the established veteran, things might have been different. Carl will someday have the advantage of benefit of the doubt for the veteran.
It’s not uncommon to hear commentators blame youth for a seemingly prima donna attitude. but new superstars in this sport offending longtime fans isn’t anything new. And it’s not an issue that NASCAR didn’t have in the past, if it even is a problem. We all love the sport’s gentlemen, but NASCAR is usually glad when there are drivers out there that encourage fans to make any kind of noise. Drivers that were no less fan icons as Dale Earnhardt and Darrell Waltrip were once despised by Bobby Allison and David Pearson fans, and this was back when the idea of a “Gillette’s Young Guns” ad in NASCAR would have been rather strange. Their real crime, like with some of the young guys today, was racing hard and beating the popular drivers of their day without apologizing for it.
The sport has always had its villains, from Dale Earnhardt to Tony Stewart to Kyle Busch, and it has always had its gentlemen, from Richard Petty to Mark Martin to Kasey Kahne. The age demographic has changed , but nothing is going to change that. Besides, if there wasn’t a Jeff Gordon to get under people’s skin, they might not have as much appreciation for a Bobby Labonte.
I’m willing to bet that someday, maybe around 20 years from now (if NASCAR survives that long), fans may be lamenting that there just aren’t any colorful drivers like Kyle Busch or Carl Edwards anymore. Kyle has already given the sport’s ratings a desperately needed shot in the arm this year. No offense to Mr. Excitement, but I doubt he could have done that.
NASCAR has its problems, but youthful drivers aren’t a part of it.
©2000 - 2008 Kurt Smith and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
Moving the July Daytona race away from the 4th? Geez Kurt, that would be like moving Darlington away from Labor Day. Oh, wait… nevermind.
I agree with Jimmy 110% percent.
Jimmy was right in smacking Kurt, and Kyle will benefit from someone breaking his nose too. The problem with the young spoiled boys is that no matter how good their talent, they want to run their mouths and don’t expect anyone to stand up to them.
Jimmy Spencer talks about young punks? Anybody reviewed Jimmy’s past? And by the way, I don’t think Jimmy did too much to “pave the way” for today’s drivers. It hasn’t been that long ago since he was out there.
I really liked the article and all the insight involved in putting it together. A year ago I was booing Kyle Busch, today I’m a total fan club member. He brought me back in front of a TV that wasn’t even on during the last four races of 07’. As for the Coke Zero 400 vs the Pepsi 400. It just goes to show you that Na$car’s loyalty is anchored right in the front row of the money pit. Kudos to Pepsi for saying ‘Sc#ew YOU’ to the Ivory Tower……..
Whatever Kurt…..Jimmy Spencer is totally right. There is no respect from these “young guns”. They need to remember how they got here. I hate all of the young guns. lol
Maybe it’s time for somebody to put Spencer back in a car just so he can “adjust a few attitudes”.
BTW, Jimmy broke Kurt Busch’s nose outside of the track, which NASCAR has no jurisdiction over if you read the rules. So their suspending Jimmy for the next race wasn’t exactly “by the book”.
I agree with both Kurt AND Jimmy! There are some very talented young drivers out there, and bringing that talent into NASCAR is a necessity. But Jimmy is also right about some of them acting entitled, like spoiled little brats. You can’t blame it on them being young, because for every Kyle Busch acting entitled, there’s a Reed Sorenson who are nothing but polite and humble and understanding of their place in the sport. For every Carl Edwards with a contrived image, there’s a Brian Vickers who is completely genuine. For every Denny Hamlin slamming his crew, there’s a Jimmie Johnson who is totally appreciative of what he is given, even if it isn’t perfect that day. Maybe every rookie ought to be required to follow in the footsteps of Ned Jarrett and take a Dale Carnegie course. Or maybe NASCAR should turn the other way when Jimmy Spencer tries to smack some respect into those who don’t have it. Bottom line. We need ‘em, but we don’t have to like ‘em. Come to think of it, that goes for the wily veterans, too…
What Kurt called Spencer was for the most part true. He forgot to also say just plain old stupid.Jimmy was a old punk thats for sure. What exactly are the young guns not respecting? Guys like Jimmy Spencer? lol
Carl Edwards “contrived”?
I’m sorry Amy, I meant your precious, humble Brian Vickers! LOL An even BETTER example!