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
Tuesday March 4, 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.
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2014 Budweiser Duels Post Race Quotes
posted by Matt Stallknecht
Friday February 21, 2014
BUDWEISER DUELS POST-RACE QUOTES
They’re saying the wheel bearing burned up in it. I don’t know what caused it, they’re taking it all apart to figure out what the heck happened. Something abnormal that’s for sure I don’t think I’ve ever had that happen at all. Hopefully, we made the race and hopefully we can fix the problem before Sunday.
WHAT WAS THAT LOUD BOOM ONCE YOU TURNED INTO THE GARAGE?
Loud pop was a tire… thankfully, it popped, hopefully it didn’t hurt anybody. All the heat created in the left front that popped was pretty weird.
REALLY GOOD RUN. WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT?
Yeah, it was good. We have a car we can work with for the 500. Got a good starting spot, so we’re going to rest easy, fluff and buff our car for a couple of days and get ready for Sunday.
ANY DIFFERENCE ON WHETHER THE TOP OR BOTTOM LANE WORKED?
Yeah, I was just moving around, trying to stay with the flow. For me, this car works on all parts of the racetrack. So I’m pretty happy with it.
DALE EARNHARDT, JR.
GOT SHUFFLED BACK, AFTER PIT STOPS AND THEN COULDN’T GET BACK UP TO THE FRONT. WHY?
Nah, we were just sitting there waiting until the last few laps to make a move. You didn’t want to pull down and get sent to the back. Seen a couple of guys get sent to the back really quick so we were just kind of waiting for the end. I felt like we had a good situation there with Ambrose behind us — we had a good run off Turn 2 and I went. It was the last lap, time to go do something, nobody went with us but hopefully Sunday is a different story.
We got a great car. We don’t have to work hard. We learned, we got a good race car. Got a car in one piece, ready to go so we’ll try and get through the next couple of practices, deliver it to the starting group this Sunday and we’ll be real happy.
YOU’RE IN THE DAYTONA 500!
Yeah, it’s pretty awesome. This Whitetail Chevrolet was so fast that I knew all I had to do was stick it behind smart, intelligent drafters and we could have a good finish. That’s what we did in the Duels and I’m excited. I’m excited to go do some stuff with the Nationwide car and have some more practice with this. But to know that we’re locked in the Daytona 500’s pretty cool.
YOU WERE OBVIOUSLY IN FRONT OF THAT MELEE AT THE END. WHEN YOU WERE UP FRONT THERE IN THE BEGINNING, WERE YOU HOPING TO JUST STAY IN LINE AND LET YOU FINISH TOP 5?
I was pretty content to ride and luckily I knew a lot of people around us were. It was nice to have a little calm and not really have to be racing hard the whole time. I knew that the pit stop was going to shake everything up and that’s exactly what happened. Fell back a little bit there but made the right moves at the end to get a good finish.
HOW STRONG ARE THESE RCR CARS?
They’re very strong! They definitely have the capabilities to be winning one of these races.
YOU’RE IN THE TOP 5 FOR YOUR HEAT IN THE DAYTONA 500. YOUR PRIMARY CAR IS SITTING RIGHT IN THE GARAGE, KIND OF WADDED UP. DID YOU THINK THIS ONE HAD IT IN IT?
Yeah, it’s a brand new car also. It’s just not quite as good as the primary but still a damned good car. I’m just proud of everybody at RCR for building such fast race cars. All of our cars have been fast, ECR motor’s been strong, even our affiliate teams have been qualifying really good and racing good. So… excited about 2014! It’s going to be a good year.
WELL MAN, YOU STARTED IN THE BACK BUT WORKED YOUR WAY TO THE FRONT WHEN IT COUNTED MOST. WERE YOU JUST BIDING YOUR TIME THROUGHOUT THE RACE?
Eh, you never know if you’re going to get back up there or not. We had to start at the back, we had to make a run early and see what we could do. We drove right to 10th, or something like that and then it got stagnant. We tried to make something happen, and went to the back again. Drove back up to the front. Again, just really proud of my guys. Matt Kruder did a hell of a job on that pit stop getting just enough gas in to gain some spots there.
RCR CARS SEEM PRETTY DARNED STRONG. DO YOU THINK THE RCR CARS HAVE SOMETHING FOR THEM ON SUNDAY — ESPECIALLY THE THREE JOE GIBBS RACING CARS THAT SEEM TO BE THE CLASS OF THE FIELD RIGHT NOW?
Oh yeah. The 20 car was extremely fast. The 11 didn’t qualify that good, but he’s a good drafter. I think he won. We definitely have something for him.
Check in with Matt and Jay on their site at CareyandCoffey.com.
Summer Bedgood · Thursday July 11, 2013
So did you hear that Jeff Gordon would be fine and dandy with NASCAR running races in the middle of the week?
Oh, yes, it’s true. Mr. Four-Time told the Motor Racing Network earlier this week that running mid-week races would be something he’s in favor of doing, similar to the way the National Football League has Monday Night Football.
“I think when “Monday Night Football’ ends, we should start “Monday Night Racing,’” said Gordon. “But that is just me. Of course I came from “Thursday Night Thunder,’ and … (it) was ridiculously successful back in the day. I am not saying we need to do it every week, but if we could find the right week in the schedule and mix it up, make it special, and make it make sense for the fans at home as well as the ones that could attend, then I think it would be awesome.”
You’ve got to admit, he has a point. Almost every other professional sport runs in primetime at some point during the regular week, and there are several short tracks across the country that run features on a weeknight. Even the Camping World Truck Series has a few primetime races each season, with three in 2013. Sure it’s not “tradition”, but sometimes it makes sense to change things up a bit. After all, things can’t stay the same way forever.
I know that some concern exists over other programming that would be on at the same time, as I’m sure most of you who watch reality television (blech…) probably have. I mean, gosh, how could NASCAR ever compete with “The Bachelorette?”
However, I think this is an idea NASCAR should consider exploring. There wouldn’t be much that could make a Monday better than some night racing at a track like Bristol, Richmond or, heck, a mile-and-a-half. It doesn’t matter where it is, but it would be a great evening for race fans everywhere.
Now onto your questions:
_This reminds me of the penalties to Gibbs, the drivers, crew chiefs and Toyota over a piece of equipment being a tiny bit over the weight limit, even though this did not affect the cars or safety. It was a manufacturing “whoopsie”. When I think of that, I don’t understand NASCAR giving no penalties of any sort when the teams deliberately broke the rules with the spacers. No, it apparently didn’t affect safety and, we are told, speed but it is comparable. I believe this decision will affect NASCAR’s credibility with me in the future. I had a lot of respect for their consistency.
“I also felt disconcerted over Denny Hamlin’s fine for talking about the new car on TV. Can someone just roll Brian France into a tube and shoot him over to a deserted island for the duration of the season?_ — Ella
I think the problems with inconsistency are rooted much deeper than Brian France, but I see your point. Though I fail to understand your comment that you, “admire their consistency”, since you just did a fine job of pointing out they are anything but.
Anyway, as much as NASCAR denies it, I think that the “no call” certainly had a lot to do with the sheer number of teams involved. 31 teams is way too many for them to be coincidentally and simultaneously cheating, and I think NASCAR realized that there was something else going on here. That “something else” would be that the roof flaps manufacturer doesn’t provide the teams with any aerodynamic advantages that the teams can’t more efficiently design for themselves.
Had this been, say, a Ford Racing problem rather than a garage-wide problem, I think there would have been more heavy handed penalties. But since every single team had a reasonable explanation for why they did what they did, NASCAR had enough reason to take their word for it.
That doesn’t mean that NASCAR was okay with it, but maybe that it wasn’t worth the effort to figure out the best way to dish out 31 penalties. They’re basically saying, “Just don’t do it again” and are going to look at options for just that down the road, including working with the spacer manufacturers to incorporate the modifications into the finished product.
As far as that deserted island idea, Ella… he probably owns one somewhere. I doubt he’d argue with your solution!
I heard ISC is going to cut seats at many of their tracks. Won’t that drive up prices? How exactly does that help them sell tickets?! — Eli
It definitely could drive up prices at many of those tracks, and in some cases it will. However, their thinking in selling more tickets is that, when tracks have fewer seats, it also drives up the demand. The difference between a few thousand seats could be the difference between sporadic ticket sales or a sellout.
Consider for a second that a sellout at Martinsville is great, but when a track like Indianapolis Motor Speedway sells the exact same amount of tickets, it’s pathetic. If Indianapolis cut down their seating to that level, they could sell out every time. It’d be a dramatic drop-off in the number of sales, but it would look much better on television. It would be much better PR to say “instant sellout” than “lots of seating available” — albeit to the detriment of the Indianapolis 500; so don’t expect that to happen anytime soon.
Also, the fewer tickets there are, the more urgent people are to get them. At several tracks right now, you can walk up to the ticket booth, buy a ticket, and walk right in without a problem. If there are fewer seats available, you will be more likely to buy well in advance.
Now, the current state of things might not immediately create that sense of urgency, but I wouldn’t leave it out of ISC’s discretion to keep making changes until it does. If they feel like this will be the best way for them to make a profit, they will definitely do it. Can you really blame them?
I read that a pit crew member got injured from some flying debris in Daytona during the last lap crash. Shouldn’t NASCAR create a rule where everyone on pit road has to stay back so this doesn’t happen? — Hershel
Why would they do that? To protect crew members from themselves?
Hershel is talking about Jay Hackney, the front tire changer for Joey Logano’s team. He was hit by a piece of debris on the wrist during that gigantic crash on the final lap of the race. He was fine, but it was a scary moment, since the piece of debris was about a foot long.
Look, things happen in racing. The pit crew members know the risks they are taking, and they are in much bigger danger during pit stops than they are watching the end of the race in Daytona. If the pit crew members want to stand at the front of the pit box and watch the end of the race, they should be able to.
Here is the thing: NASCAR doesn’t need to babysit these race teams. They are perfectly well-functioning adults and can decide for themselves whether or not they are in a good position. When cars start spinning, flying, and bouncing around at the end of the finish, if the pit crew members need to get out of the way, then they need to get out of the way. NASCAR doesn’t need to tell them to stay behind some magical red line and make them safe.
Now, in fairness, sometimes things happen in a split second and there just isn’t enough time to get out of the way fast enough. However, the pit crews know that. They are well aware that, at any time, something crazy could happen and put them in danger. A meteor could also fall from the sky. It doesn’t really matter. The crew members are at their own discretion when it comes to their safety. Let them make those decisions themselves.
Now it’s my turn. Here is my question to all of you: Over the weekend, Jeff Gordon flew to Pocono just to see the IndyCar race in Pocono. It must be nice to be able to up and fly to any race you wanted, right? If I handed you a private plane and told you that you could use it to go to any one race in the world, which one would you choose?
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©2000 - 2008 Summer Bedgood and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!
If it’s all expenses paid then the F-1 race at Monaco. Short of hitting the lottery that’s the only way I’d ever get to go there.
If it’s just fly to a race, watch the race, and come home then I’d pick the Daytona 500 or the fall race at Bristol.
Monaco baby! That’s where I’d be.
As for fans in the stands…ALL sports will have to lower ticket prices. There is no other choice with this economy going nowhere. It will get worse before it gets better. Of course with Jimmie Johnson on his way to “SIX TIME!” who knows? That may really pack the stands…..NOT. LOL.
I think Ella was saying that she DID (past tense) admire Nascar’s consistency.
And basic economics dictate that removing seats (reducing supply) will NOT raise prices unless there are fewer seats than people who want them (more demand than available supply).
I think the issue with the pit crew was that they were actually out in the pit box in front of the wall, rather than behind the wall. If they had been behind the wall, they could have at least been able to duck.
Daytona 500. But I would like to camp down there for all of speedweeks.
How do you know I don’t already have a private plane and fly to races whenever I get the urge? Okay I don’t, but if I did, I’d also fly to Monaco. Because it’s Monaco. Who doesn’t want to go to Monaco?
I hope Brian France does own a private island. And I hope he goes there and stays there and leaves Nascar to be run by someone who is able to run a business and who has respect for the sport and its fans.
First off, a mile-and-a-half race during the week would still be a boring mile-and-a-half race, just on a weeknight.
And to answer your question, I’m with Tony, Speedweeks down in Daytona in a motorhome in the infield, Turn 4 nearest to the start / finish line.
I really think NASCAR is being honest with their agenda on removing seats: to get more people to buy tickets in advance. As it is, those most likely to attend a race (less than 4 hour drive) are more apt to wait until they know the weather forecast to make a decision on attending a race if they know there will be seats available. Personally, with the current on-track product and the shakey economy, I think they are 5+ years away from having any opportunity to raise prices regardless of how many seats they take out. There are a lot of people already on the fence that a price increase would push to the wrong side.
Whats the difference between standing in the pit box, and standing 2 feet further back when something is coming at you at 100 MPH? I doubt you have time to move either way.
If I had the use of a private jet, I’d have to go to the 24 Hours of Le Mans; the greatest endurance race of them all. Second choice would be Monoco.
As much as I can’t stand Jeff Gordon, I do agree with him about mid-week races. I remember a time when there were more than 50 races a year. I also remember that, if the teams were heading to say Loudon from Daytona, they would have swung past a track like Oxford Plains and ran a night race mid-week! Lit-up tracks like Richmond and Bristol would be perfect for a mid-week night race!
Think about it this way. For all the ADD crybabies who complain that the season is too long, NASCAR could start the season at Daytona in say Early April and end it by the end of September if they scheduled several races mid-week from late May until the beginning of September, when the weather is usually good, although this year, that seems to be a real hope rather than an excepted fact! Too, NASCAR could add some more short track races, as they are better suited for night racing. And it is possible to have the usual double- and triple-headers, as most Truck and Nationwide races are on Friday and Saturday. Truck races on Monday night, Nationwide on Tuesday Night, and the Cup series on Wednesday night!
Oh wow!! I’m back in 1965!
Good idea, Jeff!
I guess NA$CAR erased the old rule, suggestion,
I was surprized that NASCAR didn’t lower the hammer on all the teams over these roof flap spacers. I was particularly surprized that Roush wasn’t hammered to the point where he would have been driven from NASCAR altogether. But, I wonder, if the real reason people are so upset was because Roush wasn’t hammered hard. After all, one of his companies made the kits that were found defective. I know most NASCAR fans hate Roush’s guts and wish he, and Ford, would just go away. Could that be the reason behind the anger about NASCAR not issuing any penalties?
“I know most NASCAR fans hate Roush’s guts and wish he, and Ford, would just go away.”
Huh? Never heard a single person ever say that.
The spacers in the kits that Roush supplied were MODIFIED by the teams – NOT illegal because of Jack Roush !