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.
Some of you might not realize but after Sunday’s race at New Hampshire, the Cup regulars get a weekend off before the Brickyard 400; that off-weekend will be the last one of the season. Right now we’re in the midst of a 12-day heat wave that has sent temperature soaring into the triple digits, and by the time the Cup season ends I’ll likely be burning my wood stove. I’ve said it before and I’ll reiterate: the Cup schedule is simply too long and needs to b e shortened by 25 percent, with a few off weekends added during the summer especially.
So before my week off, I wanted to comment on a few topics causing a buzz amongst the fans right now.
AJ Allmendinger: Ever since the news broke that AJ Allmendinger had been temporarily suspended for a failed drug test just prior to Saturday night’s race at Daytona, the fans have been buzzing (no pun intended) and left wondering what exactly was going on. In the absence of information rumor flourishes and I’ve read some pretty wild stuff on message boards and Twitter.
Wednesday at last some of the speculation was put to rest. Allmedinger’s business manager said that his driver had been found to have a “stimulant” in his system. Most of you are adults and know what the word “stimulant” means. Stimulants can range from some pretty nasty stuff, particularly meth and the various forms of “speed” right down your 12-ounce cup of Joe from the local convenience store. The spokesperson here went on to note that Allmendinger was collecting all of the prescription meds, dietary supplements, and such he regularly uses to see if they could have triggered a false positive on the test.
When the news broke (and again information abhors a vacuum) it spread like wildfire. There was rampant speculation that Allmendinger’s false positive could have been triggered by an energy drink he now endorses, Fuel In A Bottle acclaimed to be one of the most potent (though of course, not illegal) such products. Doing his due diligence John Daly of The Daly Planet located a particular substance labeled as a “potent stimulant” on a drug testing website by the name of methylxanthine. I contacted the makers of Fuel In a Bottle (whose parent company incidentally is Coca Cola) to see if methylxanthine was found in their product. I haven’t heard back from them yet; let me say I was just covering the bases here. There is absolutely no hard information that their product or any other energy drink is at the root of AJ’s problem at this point.
In doing further research I found out that methylxanthine is a family of chemicals not a unique one. Included in that list if “caffeine” a key ingredient in coffee, the world’s third most commonly consumed beverage. All energy drinks I have researched including Fuel in a Bottle contain caffeine. And again let me repeat ad nauseum whether an energy drink had anything to do at all with this drug test is strictly speculation at this point.
So is it possible that a legal substance sold in convenience stores would cause someone who consumed it to fail a drug test? It is entirely possible. Head to your local GNC and there any number of “dietary supplements” you or I could buy that would cause us to fail a NASCAR….or Olympics, or NFL, or MLB etc….drug test. If the cops pulled you over transporting the stuff you’d be in the clear. But these various sports sanctioning bodies have decided to ban such substances feeling they give competitors an unfair advantage. Or to take another example, beer is a legal substance for those of age. But use too much of it and you’ll fail a drug screening too.
All things in moderation, including alcohol, coffee, and energy drinks.
In reading between the lines of Allmendinger’s brief statement Tuesday he said, “I would never knowingly take a prohibited drug.” Note that he’s not saying he thinks he was clean or that this is all a mistake. He’s basically saying, “yes, this stuff was in my body but when I took it I didn’t know it was banned.” Ignorance isn’t going to fly as an excuse when it comes to flunking a drug test. It’s up to an athlete to study the ingredients on the bottle of anything he’s going to ingest right down to an energy drink.
U.S. Army Dismisses Newman and the No. 39 Team The U.S. Army has decided to end their sponsorship of the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 39 team at the end of this season. While there had been an effort in Congress to pass a bill not allowing any branch of the military to sponsor any sort of sporting events, the Army said their decision was not based on political pressure. They reevaluated the costs of their involvement in NASCAR racing, both the costs of sponsoring the No. 39 team and to actualize their sponsorship at the tracks and on TV, finding the return on investment unacceptably low.
Simply put, the Army and other branches of the armed services use NASCAR and a plethora of other marketing opportunities to meet their recruitment goals. They vary from the kiosks you see at local malls, to direct mailing campaigns, to appearances at high schools and colleges, as well as a heavy internet presence, to entice young people to consider a career in the military. They look at the cost of each of these efforts and how many enlistments they gain through each program, calculating the cost of each enlistee by the dollars spent.
At $8 million a year for 12 races, NASCAR was found wanting.
The story became a bit more confusing when later Tuesday the Army announced they intended to keep sponsoring Tony Schumacher’s Top Fuel NHRA team. So why drag racing and not stock car racing? The NHRA fan demographics are exactly the sort of pool the Army wants to fish in. They tend to be younger, more racially diverse, and more blue collar. The median age of self-described NASCAR fans is over 50 years old; not exactly the ideal demographic for the Army. They’re looking for guys and gals in their late teens and early 20s who might consider a career in the military after high school, college, or a few dead end jobs in the civilian sector. You’ll note that as of late, most U.S. Army ads during NASCAR races aren’t aimed at recruits themselves but rather at the parents of potential recruits who might be hesitant to see their sons or daughters join the military.
That’s a lot better demographic fit with people following our sport.
Musical Chairs: So where does the loss of Army sponsorship leave Ryan Newman for 2013? Certainly SHR racing will aggressively look for a new sponsor to replace the Army, but it’s pretty slim pickings out there right now, and teams ideally like to have sponsorship commitments signed by Labor Day. Will a lack of backing cause the No. 39 team to shut down and SHR to remain a two-car team with Danica Patrick in the No. 10 machine? Even members of Patrick’s own team admit she needs another year of seasoning in the Nationwide series before a full-time run for the Cup.
So if Allmendinger loses his ride with Penske Racing either because of lack of performance or this latest scandal, might Newman be a good fit in the No. 22? Well that would be a bit awkward considering Newman drove for Penske and left to join Tony Stewart’s burgeoning operation. It’s widely rumored that Matt Kenseth will end up in the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing car, but might an opening in the No. 22 make him change his mind? If Logano is in fact out of the No. 20 might Penske consider him for the No. 22? Meanwhile if Allmendinger ends up being dismissed from Penske and Newman leaves SHR over funding issues as Kenseth essentially has, might Stewart consider AJ Allmendinger for the No. 39?
Of course standing there beside the merry-go-round is Kurt Busch still looking for the last open pony.
*Fines, Fines, Everywhere a Fine: (blocking up the scenery, breaking my mind)*It was a busy Tuesday afternoon when NASCAR began announcing fines levied against drivers after the Daytona race weekend across their top two touring series.
At the top of the list was Tony Stewart who was docked six driver and owners points for a NACA duct found left open after qualifying. Crew chief Steve Addington was fined $25,000 dollars and placed on probation until August 22nd. While accepting the fine, competition director Greg Zippadelli said that the No. 14 car had suffered a broken rear visor during pre-qualifying inspection and in the scramble to replace it they’d dislodged the hose without intent.
Austin Dillon lost six driver points for a similar infraction. Because his crew chief, Danny Stockman was already on probation after having the No. 3 car found too low after winning at Kentucky. Stockman was suspended for two weeks and fined $10,000.
Joey Logano’s Nationwide car was found to be too low after the Daytona race. Car owner Joe Gibbs was docked six points, while crew chief Adam Stevens was fined $10,000 and put on probation until August 22nd. Why wasn’t Logano docked points? At the start of the season a driver must declare whether he will run for the Sprint Cup, Nationwide or Camping World Truck Series championships. He may only earn points in that one series. Thus Logano is ineligible to earn Nationwide points, and such a penalty would be meaningless.
Twitter: OK, I’m still new to this Twitter thing. Can somebody tell me when this, #, changed from being just a symbol for a number?
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i’ve thought all along that those “energy drinks” are toxic. i know once i had a water-down “rooster booster” and it set my blood pressure rising and heart racing. being adrenaline junkies like drivers are i’m sure those drinks don’t have that kind of impact.
remember when kenny wallace was sponsored in nationwide by some energy pill years ago….all that was was “legal speed”. i cringe when i see kids drinking that stuff like water.
i guess time will tell about aj. i hope it’s just the energy drinks and not my original suspicion (i.e. mayfield 2.0)
maybe army in nhra gets more tv time that nascar cause unless the car is up front or the favorite, you’re not getting tv exposure. but then again, the army car in nascar does have hendrick parts….
I find the public reaction to AJ’s positive drug test to be insightful. Drug use and abuse is endemic to our culture so why are we surprised that a health nut like AJ might consume something banned by NASCAR? My experience has been that many of my health nut friends have no problems consuming many of the banned substances on the NASCAR list including some of the illegal ones. AJ has shown in the past that he has issues with self control exemplified by his DUI in 2009. “I honestly felt fine, but I obviously should have erred more on the side of caution, particularly given what I do for a living,” Allmendinger said. “It was a bad judgment call and I apologize for that. If anything good can come of this, then hopefully I can be an example of being more aware of drinking responsibly and if even if you feel fine, take a cab, call a friend. Just don’t risk it. I will do my best to make it right and use this to learn myself and hopefully educate others.”
I hope AJ is able to prove he was “hopped up on Mountain Dew” and his reputation can be restored. Unfortunately, I believe he was on the way out at Penske and this incident will solidify his exit. Roger Penske is probably remembering his days with Kurt Busch fondly as his phone rings off the hook. At least with Busch he had a few wins and chase runs in his pocket.
QUESTION: “OK, I’m still new to this Twitter thing. Can somebody tell me when this, #, changed from being just a symbol for a number?”
ANSWER:“There is a fifth dimension, beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of Geeks enslaved by Standard Keyboards. It is an area which we call the Twitter.”
So why drag racing and not stock car racing?
Well, the demographics you mention. Plus, for (what I have read) the same money, they get 22 race weekends, supporting a 7 time champion, who is regularly covered extensively each weekend, and usually races into the late rounds. He is very TV friendly, fans love him, and is one of the easily recognizable faces of Top Fuel. Plus – his nickname, “the Sarge”, is pretty cool. In all, his ‘Q’ rating is very good. In short, he is NHRA’s Jimmie Johnson for Newman’s price.
No slight to Ryan Newman; but, I’m pretty sure even Joyce Julius would agree that he is no ‘Jimmie Johnson’…
Nascar management better start paying attention. Red Bull and our Armed Forces both sent messages. The demographics are going the wrong way for Nascar.
Shorter races, an occasional underdog – something has to happen. The Chase – and all the rest – ain’t it.
On the schedule – agreed less races. But – how does Nascar not race on the 4th!!
On AJ – it would be a real shame to ruin a career over some store bought drink. A disgrace really.
1.) I find it funny how the demographic that you described to be NHRA fans is exactly the fans that Nascar is craving for while kicking the long time fan to the curb. Looks like its back to the drawing board Nascar.
2.) I have heard several places that these guys need to be held accountable for what they are taking. Seriously, there are zillions of combinations which could cause a false positive. I don’t think every driver can monitor every single thing they put in their body. The labels are not going to give them everything and I’m sure they have better use of their time than going to each company that they consumes something for to get detailed information on what they take. For A.J.‘s sake, I hope it is just an overuse of caffeine or something like that and not something harder.
Like Mayfield, I just don’t see him being into meth or anything like that. Time will tell I guess.
Steve said: The labels are not going to give them everything and I’m sure they have better use of their time than going to each company that they consumes something for to get detailed information on what they take.
The lack of information on labels – that is true. My son runs track in college, and he has been told that many of these products contain banned substances that are not on the label. He was particularly advised about energy/recovery drinks.
As far as not having time to research some of these products, only the person consuming the product can answer that. If you don’t need to worry about a surprise cup test, maybe its not a big deal. If you do need to worry about one…
Ha! August 23, 2007 the # symbol added another meaning. Assuming you were serious <grin> a # in Twitter is called a hashtag and it is a way to create a topic or trending idea, thought, or word for others to follow. many tracks and even individual races have them and they are quite fun! #justsayin
Twitter- OK, I’m still new to this Twitter thing. Can somebody tell me when this, #, changed from “the pound key” to a “hash tag”?
Not quite sure how it got butchered. 8/23/07? Thanks. Someone might want to tell Comcast.
Good thoughts, Matt. LOL, if JD hadn’t explained the whole hashtag thing when the Daly Planet started using Twitter for the race blog, I’d probably never have discovered it.
NASCAR spent so much effort scooping up so many sponsors for their “official” whatever of NASCAR that there is less and less for the $ for the race teams. I don’t go to a race because of the “official” whatever of NASCAR. No $, no cars on the track, no reasons for the fans!
Maybe I’m just a sap, but I really hope that AJ’s B sample comes back negative. I’ve never been a fan of the energy drinks. I get enough jolt from Pepsi, I don’t need to be wound up any tighter.
GinaV24, that’s an excellent point, and think about it further…NASCAR has an official tire and an official fuel. That’s about ten companies right there that would be perfect for putting their logo on a racecar who are banned form doing so. And so no one can find sponsors, but the prizes are bigger. And so the start-and-park phenomenon.
I hope A.J.‘s B sample comes back negative and some how he is able put this all behind him. He needs a little good luck for a change.