Recent Posts

Fantasy Picks ‘N’ Pans : Chicagoland Edition

The Nextel Cup Series heads to Joliet, IL this weekend to kick off the second half of the season at one of NASCAR's newest - and most predictable - facilities. Despite its reputation for being just another 1.5 mile "cookie cutter" track, Chicagoland Speedway is showing her age, developing a wider racing groove capable of supporting side-by-side racing.The Summer sun bakes the track's surface, making it slippery. Handling is always a priority but, when you take into consideration the heat wave that that has been gripping most of the country, it will be of the utmost importance this weekend. While track position has been critical in the past, the wider racing groove is taking that out of the equation more and more. When choosing your fantasy lineup, pick teams that typically make their car handle the best; they will be the ones to prevail.Which teams will spend their weekend heading in a perfect racing line mentioned above, and which ones will find themselves led astray? Read on to find out who to sit and who to keep in this week's Fantasy Picks 'N' Pans.

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Tony Stewart: No Excuse For Bad Behavior

It is no longer particularly noteworthy when Tony Stewart attacks fellow competitors that impede him in his never-ending pursuit of winning NASCAR Nextel Cup races. In fact it has almost become expected that Tony will provide choice derogatory critiques to nationwide audiences of his fellow competitors should they challenge his on-track progress or find themselves swapping paint with the 2-time Cup Champion. But until Saturday night when Tony Stewart directed his patented brand of vindictiveness towards his own teammate Denny Hamlin, many have attempted to justify and excuse Stewarts chronic poor behavior. However, Stewart's verbal bashing of Hamlin during the telecast of the Pepsi 400 was so clearly uncalled for, and beyond defending that even the staunchest of Tony Stewart supporters have been left speechless.

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Top Ten Reasons Kyle Busch is REALLY Mad at his Hendrick Teammates

10. They all have Supermodel wives - AND can remember their names.9. The company Holiday cards were sent out signed "Rick, Jeff, Jimmie, Casey, and Kurt's Little Brother."8. Just because it says Corn Flakes ON the car doesn't mean they need to put all those Corn Flakes IN the car!7. They make him use the guest bathroom at the shop - and all the fans stare.

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Tearing Apart The Trucks : Fike’s Fall From Grace

The drivers of the Craftsman Truck Series got a break this past weekend, and while some drivers spent that time resting and relaxing, others spent it capturing headlines. Aaron Fike was arrested Saturday night with lady friend Cassandra Davidson at Kings Island after the park reported Fike's SUV as suspicious. Fike tried to drive away when the Mason City Police Department approached the vehicle, but another officer pulled in front, forcing him to stop. After a thorough search of the car, the two offenders were taken into custody and arrested after officers found heroin, syringes, and spoons with residue stashed inside. According to police, Fike admitted taking the drug; if that's true, those words will cause another promising Truck Series career path to be flushed down the tubes.NASCAR's substance abuse policy was instituted in 1988, and it's pretty straight forward. NASCAR may conduct random drug tests on a whim; if a driver refuses to take the test, he is suspended until he passes, giving NASCAR a reason to consider allowing him to return to the track. However, if he fails the test outright, he is immediately suspended, offered a treatment plan, and considered for reinstatement only after completing his recovery under the watchful eyes of NASCAR. Although it will consider lifting a suspension, NASCAR officials have said there is one rule they will not bend : a three strikes and you're out policy.

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Mirror Driving : Stewart vs Hamlin, Kyle Busch vs The World, and Jamie McMurray vs The Weight Of Expectations

*Jamie McMurray's win : Long time coming, or lucky son-of-a-gun?*Tommy: Long time coming…and well earned, too. He drove one heck of a race. Cami: I think it's a long time coming. He had a good car Saturday night; it clearly wasn't a fluke. Tony: I'm not ready to label him a championship contender quite yet, but McMurray should've been good for one or two wins a year for awhile now.

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Green & 13: Unlucky as Ever for Ginn Racing

At Daytona in February, Mark Martin made his debut for Ginn Racing by winning the Daytona 500...but losing the Daytona 505 by little more than one foot. Many argue that he got worked out of it by NASCAR's controversial decision to not throw the yellow flag for a crash off turn four until after the checkered flew. Not one to dwell on the past, Martin took the momentum from that run and put it to work, reeling off a series of impressive runs in what used to be Joe Nemechek's car. Nemechek was now driving the No. 13, a team that was hastily assembled following Martin's arrival to expand Ginn Racing into a three car arsenal for 2007. It was a move that should have led to on-track success...if only there were the money to fund it.At first, expansion and success for Ginn this season brought a basic form of respect along with it. What once was a decent 2nd-tier Cup operation was suddenly contending for wins and possibly even championships after only a few short months under Bobby Ginn's ownership.

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Who’s Hot and Who’s Not in Nextel Cup : Pepsi 400 Edition

Saturday was supposed to be the luckiest day of the year - July 7th, 2007 (7/7/07). On that fateful night, some of NASCAR's greatest drivers were lucky, indeed, finding no problem pulling the lever and hitting that jackpot on the slot machine of restrictor plate racing known as Daytona International Speedway. While Jamie McMurray snagged the biggest payout, Kyle Busch discovered you make your own luck, and for all the talk about numerology, Clint Bowyer ended up just where he was destined to...in seventh place. In the midst of it all, Saturday night's race provided the usual restrictor plate fireworks that we've all come to expect. There were teammate squabbles, finger pointing, bashed-in race cars and fiery tempers, all of which led to a gambler's delight on wheels - one of the closest finishes ever recorded in NASCAR history.So, which drivers were blessed with a visit from Lady Luck down south, and which ones were left alone to contemplate what might have been? Read this week's Who's Hot and Who's Not in Nextel Cup to find out.

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NASCAR Teammates : For Good, Or For Evil?

Saturday night was an encapsulation of so many things that are good and bad about teammates. Some drivers helped their teammates succeed, some ended their teammate's night, and some just couldn't get out of each other's way. With the driver movement that is already set to take place at the end of the year, the dynamics of how soon-to-be-former teammates will interact in the future are beginning to take shape now. Saturday night, we learned the end result of those departures could be not just hurt feelings...but even some irreparably damaged relationships down the line.

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Running Their Mouth: Pepsi 400

"It was unreal. I'm just so happy for Jamie and all those guys on the Crown Royal No. 26, IRWIN Tools, Diaggio, all those fellows work really hard, and Jamie, that guy works harder than anybody else. I felt like I won. Just to know how hard Jamie works, to know how close that team's been. I hope the fans enjoyed that one. That was a lot of fun. I'm so proud of my Office Depot team. I was pushing Kyle and we went under the white flag and I'm like, ‘Man, I'm pushing the wrong guy here,' and I saw that gap open up and Jamie and Biffle on the outside, and I thought I'd just fill that gap and push Jamie for all I was worth there, and hoped he'd get the win. I'm just so happy for him. That guy works as hard or harder than anybody down here; he deserves it." _Carl Edwards_

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Numbers Game: Pepsi 400

*0* Number of Hendrick teammates that helped push Kyle Busch's car in the draft during the closing laps of the Pepsi 400. Kyle was still able to finish 2nd with brother Kurt's help and by driving a strong race car - one that was capable of running up front without another car tucked directly behind (or under) him.*0.005* Jamie McMurray's margin of victory over Kyle Busch (in seconds), a new Daytona track record. The finish is tied for the 2nd closest in NASCAR history since the advent of electronic scoring in 1993.*1* Car dropped to the rear of the field prior to the start of the Pepsi 400. (No. 88 - Ricky Rudd: Unapproved impound adjustment)*2* Career Nextel Cup wins for Jamie McMurray in 168 starts.

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