Race Weekend Central

Beside the Rising Tide: Brian France’s Spring Semester Science Fair Project

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

Say what you will about NASCAR’s 2018 Monster Energy All-Star Race but there’s no arguing it’s over. Or is it? If nothing else, we’ve gotten a glimpse of their new aero and restrictor plate package. It’s developed with an eye towards making racing on the intermediate tracks more palatable than the typically sedate parades we …

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Beside the Rising Tide: NASCAR, The Price Is Right

(Photo: Matthew T. Thacker/NKP)

Dear NASCAR, Well, you certainly caught us all off guard last week with the news you’ve put out feelers about selling the whole Magical Mystery Tour that is contemporary NASCAR racing. After much deliberation I’ve decided that I’d be the perfect new owner. No, I haven’t got much of a financial stake in the sport …

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Beside the Rising Tide: 2 Out of 3 Ain’t Bad

(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)

For the first time in two months, NASCAR hosted a triple-header with all three of their top touring series staging races at the same track this weekend at Dover. The results? With all due apologies to Marvin Lee Aday (perhaps better known as Meatloaf), “two out of three ain’t bad.” In interest of full disclosure, …

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Beside the Rising Tide: Who’s Zooming Who?

(Photo: AM Racing)

Most of us were caught off guard Friday by the news NASCAR had acquired the ARCA racing series. At first glance, the merger of the two series seems ill-considered, with at least one NASCAR team owner (Rob Kauffman) even hinting he felt the RTA should investigate if the move gives NASCAR a monopoly in stock …

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Beside the Rising Tide: Indianapolis Groans & the Raiders of the Lost Ticket Sales

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade: Autostock)

If the Brickyard 400 isn’t on life support, it’s not at the top of many race fans’ bucket lists anymore either. For decades, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway hosted only one race a year, but it was the granddaddy of them all, the Indy 500. The NASCAR race at the Brickyard was born of a disastrous …

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Beside the Rising Tide: Bread and Circuses

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade/NKP)

In a move that should have surprised absolutely nobody with a pulse, NASCAR announced yet another new rules format for the upcoming All-Star non-points race at Charlotte next month. I have checked the rules carefully (with that laser-like focus on detail I have been noted for my entire writing career…ahem), and I can say with …

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Beside the Rising Tide: Inventive Incentive

(Photo: Russell LaBounty / NKP)

Despite NASCAR’s off week last weekend, many fairly significant stories broke during what’s normally a quiet time in the sport. Completely unexpectedly, NASCAR released the 2019 Cup schedule. Typically, that schedule isn’t released until late summer/early fall at the earliest, but for whatever reason, this year (at the request of the somewhat coy series title sponsor?) …

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Besides The Rising Tide: 25 Years Later, Alan Kulwicki Remembered

Editor’s Note: Sunday (April 1) marked 25 years since Alan Kulwicki, the 1992 Winston Cup champion died in a plane crash en route to Bristol, Tenn. Matt McLaughlin remembers the life of this owner/driver and 2019 NASCAR Hall of Fame nominee with this look back at his life and career. Though it was not all …

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Beside the Rising Tide: It’s Snow Fun

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

I’m not going to blame NASCAR for making it snow this weekend in Southern Virginia. The sanctioning body can only respond to the weather, not control it, and how to respond to bad weather with a worsening forecast is one of those “damned if you do” and “damned if you don’t” situations. There’s no changing …

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Beside the Rising Tide: March Mindlessness

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

It’s not the sort of racing that originally attracted me to motorsports, but every year I am engaged in a race of my own. It’s a race to see how long a season that started with high hopes (moderate hopes? Bemused acceptance?) gets to the point I wish that I’d at least interviewed for that …

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