NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Racing to the Point: What Kept Marcos Ambrose from Becoming a Great?

2014 Michigan I CUP Marcos Ambrose CIA

(Credit: CIA Stock Photography)

With all of the spotlight on the winner-take-all race for the title at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Marcos Ambrose probably won’t receive much attention in what will most likely be his final Sprint Cup race. He’ll run 29th, slip into the shadows and a year from now we’ll be trying to remember his name. Was it Marcus …

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Racing to the Point: Separating the Chase Contenders & Pretenders

2014 Richmond II CUP Ford Chase drivers CIA

(Credit: CIA Stock Photography)

This new elimination-style playoff format has many people believing that some of the Chase underdogs have a chance at the title as along as they keep their noses clean and survive each round. I want to dispel that rumor right now. The cream is still going to rise to the top, as it always does. …

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Racing to the Point: Revisiting Spingate, One Year Later For Michael Waltrip Racing

2014 Indianapolis CUP Clint Bowyer CIA

(Credit: CIA Stock Photography)

The spin, like an earthquake, lasted about five seconds. Its aftershock is still being felt. This was no ordinary I-want-to-be-a-NASCAR-driver spin. When Clint Bowyer followed orders to itch his arm and went sideways off turn 4 in the final laps of the regular season finale at Richmond last season, he set his organization back three …

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Racing to the Point: The Wait Continues for the New Kyle Busch

2014 Bristol II CUP Kyle Busch CIA

(Credit: CIA Stock Photography)

We’ve been waiting a long time for the new Kyle Busch. You know the one I’m talking about: the guy that plows through adversity because his maturity matches his talent. It’s the new Kyle Busch that is going to realize his potential, pile up Sprint Cup wins and score championships with ease. Unfortunately, he’s a …

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Racing to the Point: Fireworks Ready to Ease Frustration at Bristol

2014 Sonoma CUP Kyle Busch Clint Bowyer CIA

(Credit: CIA)

Who is going to crack first? Frustration is mounting in the NASCAR Sprint Cup garage and there are only three races until the new playoffs start. If Sunday’s race at Michigan was any indication, buckle your seat belts – and stay in your car until a safety worker arrives – because you know what is …

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Racing to the Point: Risk Worth The Reward for JTG-Daugherty Racing

2014 Watkins Glen CUP AJ Allmendinger checkered flag CIA

Can you imagine the conversation between the JTG-Daugherty Racing owners — Tad Geschickter, Jodi Geschickter and Brad Daugherty — and Bobby Labonte in June of last year? I assume it went something like this: Owners: Bobby, we’re going to bring in AJ Allmendinger to run some races in order to evaluate the program. Labonte: You’re …

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Racing to the Point: The Never-Ending Road Course Chase Debate

2014 Sonoma CUP pack racing CIA

(Photo: CIA Stock Photo, Inc. ©2014)

Every time NASCAR shows up at a road course, the same question is asked. And no, it isn’t who is going to want to knock out Jacque Villeneuve afterward? Well, maybe there are two. The bigger question is should a road course race be included in the Chase for the Sprint Cup? The resounding answer is …

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Racing to the Point: We Should Appreciate Jeff Gordon’s 90-Win Milestone

2014 Pocono I CUP Jeff Gordon CIA

(Credit: CIA)

Amid all the brick kissing and reveling in Jeff Gordon’s fifth Brickyard 400 victory on Sunday, a more important milestone was overlooked. Gordon became only the third driver in NASCAR history to win 90 races. Ninety. That’s how many wins Aric Almirola has times 90. It’s an incredible feat for a driver in the modern …

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Racing to the Point: What Does NASCAR Have to Show for 20 Years in Indy?

2014 Daytona Sprint Cup Brian France Press Conference Credit Phil Allaway

(Photo: Phil Allaway, Frontstretch)

Prestigious. Historic. Spectacle. All three words suit the greatest race in the world, the Indianapolis 500, run annually at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The flat 2.5-mile track has proven time and time again that it suits America’s top open-wheel series. Ryan Hunter-Reay and Helio Castroneves’ battle during the last laps of this year’s event further …

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Racing to the Point: The Flatter the Track, the More the Debris

2014 Pocono I CUP Brad Keselowski debris on grille CIA

Foiled by a hot dog wrapper? Brad Keselowski had the win in the bag back in June, but a move to remove the trash handed the win to the No. 88 with one lap to go.

Following the second caution for debris in turn 3 of Sunday’s race, the fan standing in front of me at New Hampshire Motor Speedway turned and suggested the safety worker probably went out and picked up the same piece he picked up last time. He was in the same exact spot. In other words, the …

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