NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Open-Wheel Wednesday: Wake-Up Call – The Unfortunate Case of INDYCAR & Auto Club Speedway

Graham Rahal winning at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana in IndyCar

(Photo: Chris Owens)

Some weeks, it is tough to cover INDYCAR. For four years now I’ve been covering the sport, and just when it looks like the series has turned the corner, the sanctioning body does something that knocks them right back to Earth. It is utterly frustrating to see a sport with such promise and potential for great things …

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5 Points to Ponder: An Emerging Austin Dillon

2015 Pocono CWTS Richard Childress Austin Dillon CIA

Photo Credit: CIA Stock Photography

ONE: Chicagoland will be the real test for JGR There’s no question it has been a wonderful stretch of racing for the entire Joe Gibbs Racing organization, and in particular Kyle Busch. In an eight-race stretch starting at Sonoma Raceway, JGR has won a total of six events (four wins for Busch and two for …

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Bowles-Eye View: Jeff Gordon’s NASCAR Retirement – Planning It Right

2015 Pocono CUP Jeff Gordon autograph CIA

(Photo: CIA Stock Photo, Inc. ©2015)

It’s hard to believe the rainbow scheme Jeff Gordon will run at Bristol Saturday night is officially 22 years old. It’s the age Gordon was himself when running as a Cup Series rookie, taking the No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet to 14th in the series standings en route to Rookie of the Year. Since then, Gordon …

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Couch Potato Tuesday: High-Drag Package Tests NBC

NASCAR Sprint Cup action during the 2015 Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway

(Photo: CIA Stock Photo, Inc. ©2015)­­

Michigan International Speedway brought the high-drag package into the spotlight once again. As you can imagine, such a setup really does affect how a Sprint Cup race is covered. Anyone reading this critique probably already has an opinion on how the package affected the racing. That’s great. You’re more than entitled to your opinions. What …

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Who’s Hot & Who’s Not In NASCAR: 2015 Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Edition

2015 Michigan II CUP AJ Allmendinger Kyle BUsch racing CIA

Photo Credit: CIA Stock Photography

Now that we are down to just three races remaining in NASCAR’s “regular season,” the pressure is officially on for drivers who don’t have a coveted win to go for it at all costs. And there may be no better place for the first of these pressure-cooker races to happen than at Bristol on Saturday …

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Beside the Rising Tide: Breaking NASCAR News – There Is None

2015 Michigan II CUP Ryan Newman racing CIA

(Photo: CIA Stock Photo, Inc. ©2015)

I’d hate to call it a “meeting of the minds” in that some participants obviously lack one, but there was a mass assemblage of “principals involved with the product” at Michigan on Friday. NASCAR hierarchy, drivers, team owners, crew chiefs and representatives of the car makers involved in the sport gathered together to discuss the …

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The Big 6: Questions Answered After the 2015 Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan

Matt Kenseth poses with the trophy after winning the Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway

(Photo: CIA Stock Photo, Inc. ©2015)­­

Who… gets my shoutout of the race? Starting from the back after an engine change, Austin Dillon and his No. 3 team knew they had to try something to gain track position, so they went with a pit strategy that put Dillon off-sequence from the rest of the field but gained him the track position …

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Up To Speed: Drivers Dodge Questions About Michigan Aero Package

2015 Michigan II CUP Ryan Newman Landon Cassill racing CIA

Photo Credit: CIA Stock Photography

Change has been rather commonplace in NASCAR over the past year or so, but it’s hard to imagine a time when changes were occurring on a week-to-week basis like they are now. Kentucky, Indianapolis and now Michigan have had new aero packages in an effort to improve the on-track product. The low-downforce package at Kentucky Speedway …

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Kickin’ the Tires: NASCAR’s Decisions Made in Best Interest of the Sport

2015 Michigan II CUP pack racing CIA

Photo Credit: CIA Stock Photography

It’s pretty obvious that the high-downforce racing package isn’t what’s best for race fans or conducive to the best overall action on the track – at least in the current configuration. It failed at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and it didn’t seem to produce the desired results at Michigan International Speedway, either. But had the attempt …

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Thinkin’ Out Loud: 2015 Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan

2015 Michigan II CUP Matt Kenseth team trophy CIA

Photo Credit: CIA Stock Photography

Who’s in the headline – Joe Gibbs Racing established their dominance early in the weekend and threw down the gauntlet in qualifying by putting their cars first through third, and all four in the top six. When the race started, Matt Kenseth took advantage of his 16th career pole and a very strong car to race off …

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