Don’t have enough time to read all the NASCAR news each week? Get tired of sifting through hundreds of news stories trying to find the latest news? Let us do it for you. Each week, we’ll give you a quick rundown of all the stories that were newsworthy, so you don’t have to search high and low for what made the headlines this week. Whether you are an avid NASCAR news reader or a casual fan, In Case You Missed It will keep you up to date on all of the major happenings in the world of NASCAR racing. This week just in case you were on a vacation on Neptune, we’ll recap the penalties dished out at Daytona and let you know what might be in store at Vegas in three weeks, plus much more.
Friday, February 9, 2007
Miller Brewing Co. threw down the gauntlet and challenged fellow beer sponsor Anheuser-Busch over who will finish better in the NASCAR Nextel Cup standings in 2007. The prize is the naming rights to one of two MLB stadiums. If Kurt Busch (Miller) beats Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Budweiser) in the standings, they propose that St. Louis’ stadium be renamed Miller Lite Stadium during a weekend series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Milwaukee Brewers. If Earnhardt Jr. wins, then Milwaukee’s Miller Park will be changed to Budweiser Park for the weekend series in Milwaukee. No word yet on if A-B has accepted the challenge.
No More Free Steak for Stremme
Chip Ganassi Racing and sponsor Lone Star Steakhouse parted company this week. Lone Star had previously sponsored the No. 40 Dodge driven by David Stremme along with Coors Light; no replacement sponsor has been announced.
February 10-11, 2007
MWR and PPI Partner Up
Michael Waltrip Racing announced a partnership with Cal Wells’ PPI Motorsports team for ownership of the No. 00 Domino’s/Burger King Toyota driven by David Reutimann. That won’t help Reutimann lock into any races since the No. 32 PPI team was 37th in owner points last year, but they will be able to use the equipment and personnel PPI had.
Menard Will PEAK Some Interest in 2007
PEAK Antifreeze announced that they will be a sponsor on the No. 15 DEI Chevy driven by ROTY candidate Paul Menard in 2007. PEAK will be the primary sponsor on the car during Speedweeks and the fall race at Bristol.
Yates Passing the Torch
Robert Yates, owner of the No. 38 and No. 88 Fords, announced plans to hand over the reigns of RYR to his son Doug Yates in 2008, retiring after 19 years as a car owner and nearly 40 years in NASCAR.
Monday, February 12, 2007
New Track, New Fuel Cell
NASCAR announced that drivers will have to use a smaller 13-gallon fuel cell at Las Vegas Motor Speedway when the Busch Series and Nextel Cup Series visit the track in early March. The smaller fuel cell will be used in conjunction with a newly-developed harder left side tire.
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
Cheaters Never Prosper
NASCAR sent a strong message when they announced on Tuesday that four Nextel Cup teams were penalized following infractions at Daytona 500 qualifying. Ken Francis, crew chief for Kasey Kahne, and Robbie Reiser, crew chief for Matt Kenseth, were suspended for four races each, and Kahne and Kenseth were each penalized 50 driver and owner points. Rodney Childers, crew chief for Scott Riggs, and Josh Browne, crew chief for Elliott Sadler, were suspended for two races each, and Riggs and Sadler were each penalized 25 driver and owner points.
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Take Me Out to the Ballgame
The much talked about partnership between Jack Roush and Fenway Sports Group was made official this week. The new venture will be named Roush Fenway Racing, with FSG taking a 50% stake in the company. The current team at Roush Racing will continue to run the racing side of things, while FSG will handle marketing and sales activities.
Can’t Get Enough
It seems that Mark Martin just can’t get enough NASCAR, no matter how much he tries to retire. It was announced Wednesday that he’ll be racing three Busch races for Hendrick Motorsports. His schedule begins at Darlington on May 11th, and also includes the August race at Michigan and the season finale at Homestead-Miami in November.
Bad News for Michael Waltrip Racing
NASCAR announced Wednesday that they have suspended David Hyder, crew chief for the No. 55 NAPA Toyota driven by Michael Waltrip. Hyder was also fined $100,000. Also, Bobby Kennedy, director of competition for MWR was escorted out of Daytona. For the same infraction, Waltrip was docked 100 driver points, and team owner Buffy Waltrip was docked 100 owner points.
Thursday, February 15, 2007
Finally, Some Action on the Track
The Gatorade Duels were run on Thursday with Tony Stewart winning race number one, which saw the embattled Waltrip race his way in with an eighth-place finish. Earnhardt Jr. overcame earlier contact with Waltrip to finish second, followed by Jeff Burton, polesitter David Gilliland and Denny Hamlin. David Reutimann secured a place in the 500 thanks to Boris Said‘s 12th-place run.
In the second race, Jeff Gordon took the checkered flag followed by Kurt Busch, Stremme, Kyle Busch and Kenseth. Joe Nemechek and Mike Wallace finished ninth and 11th respectively, which was good enough to put them in the big show on Sunday. Of course it seems like we can’t have a race at Daytona without some post race inspection issue. Gordon’s winning car failed inspection when it was found to be too low. NASCAR said that it was due to a part failure, not cheating, so while he was able to keep his race winner status in the second Gatorade Duel, Gordon will still have to start Sunday’s race from the 42nd place.
Better Luck Next Time
Here is a list of the teams that missed the Daytona 500:
Mike Skinner (Toyota), Ward Burton (Chevy), AJ Allmendinger (Toyota), Bill Elliott (Dodge), Kenny Wallace (Chevy), Mike Bliss (Dodge), Stanton Barrett (Dodge), Derrike Cope (Dodge), James Hylton (Chevy), Jeremy Mayfield (Toyota), Regan Smith (Chevy), Menard (Chevy), Kevin Lepage (Chevy), Brian Vickers (Toyota), Frank Kimmel (Ford), Eric McClure (Chevy), Kirk Shelmerdine (Chevy) and Brandon Whitt (Chevy).