Recent Posts

Bowles-Eye : Tony Stewart Threatening To Make Indy His Personal Playground

There are some tracks where the mere mention of the name evokes memories of just one man, the driver above all others who took pleasure in making that rock-hard circle of speed his own personal playground. Darrell Waltrip and Bristol. Bill Elliott and Michigan. Dale Earnhardt and Talladega. Trophies were but a metaphor for these legends, defining themselves through years of dominance at a track with which they achieved perfect chemistry. Looks like the formula's in place for Tony Stewart and Indianapolis.

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Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud : Brickyard 400 Race Recap

*The Key Moment*: With ten laps to go, Tony Stewart muscled his way under Kevin Harvick. The two skirmished for a lap, but Stewart quickly emerged ahead and drove off to an uncontested win. *In a Nutshell*: All of the sizzle and none of the steak for the world's most overhyped sporting event. *Dramatic Moment*: There was some good racing with the Top 5 over the final fifteen laps as a clearly irritated Harvick slid backwards. *What They'll Be Talking About Around the Water Cooler This Week* Fortunately, the Brickyard 400 still pays fairly well, *because a profanity uttered live on ESPN's first Cup broadcast of the season ought to set Stewart back about $50,000 later this week*.

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Ten Points to Ponder … After Indianapolis

*1. Stewart Storylines* - As expected, Stewart has hit his midsummer stride, winning two straight Cup races and his second Brickyard 400. Stewart-related questions: Will Tony be punished for saying "bullsh*t" in his post-race interview? Just what bullsh*t was he referring to that he thinks his fans have to put up with? Will he continue the trend of six of the past nine Brickyard winners taking the title? And how much will an autographed sweat-soaked Tony Stewart towel go for at auction to benefit his charity foundation? *2. Unhappy Harvick* - Kevin Harvick was miffed when Tony Stewart bumped him passing for the lead in the closing laps. Harvick claimed the post-race doughnut he gave Stewart was congratulatory, not retaliatory. Still, Harvick said this: "He's always the first one to whine about people not giving him enough room. I gave him plenty of room all day to race, and he winds up knocking the left front fender off, and we wound up finishing seventh. It is what it is. Just race them how they race you." The two drivers are close friends off the track, but will Harvick stand by his veiled threat to move Tony the next time they are battling for a win?

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Confused by Top 35 Fallout From Ginn, DEI Merger? One Toyota Team Knows The Answer

The NASCAR Nextel Cup Series may be midway through its season, but the battle for the Top 35 is now the most competitive it's been since the first five races of the year. Following the merger between Ginn Racing and Dale Earnhardt, Inc., the No. 13 team, currently 35th in owner points, was eliminated; that took them out of a "locked in" qualifying spot and gave several teams that were struggling new opportunities to be successful. When you take the No. 13 out of the equation - the team is no longer attempting every race, which no longer makes them eligible to be "locked in" - the gap between the _new_ 35th and 36th shrunk considerably. What was a seemingly insurmountable 225 points just two weeks ago at Chicagoland changed in an instant to just seven points heading into Indianapolis, with one team getting the sought-after exemption they desperately needed. Who benefited the most from Ginn Racing's demise? The legendary Wood Brothers No. 21 team, which inherited the spot the No. 13 car left behind, as well as Bill Davis Racing's No. 22 entry, which entered Sunday with a chance to be the first Toyota team locked in by owner points since Bristol.

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Rating The Nextel Cup Rookies : Indianapolis Edition

*Rookies in the Starting Lineup*: Juan Pablo Montoya (2nd), Paul Menard (28th), David Ragan (30th), David Reutimann (34th). *Unofficial Finishing Positions*: Juan Pablo Montoya (2nd), David Ragan (16th), Paul Menard (20th), David Reutimann (38th). *Rookie of the Race*: Juan Pablo Montoya. When Montoya qualified his Texaco Havoline Dodge on the outside of the front row for the Allstate 400 at The Brickyard, he accomplished more than simply securing his best career starting spot. Making his first start in a stock car at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Montoya made history before the race even began - he's now the first driver in the famed race track's history to start in all three major series to run there (Indy Racing League, Formula One, and NASCAR). His experience showed on Sunday, as the No. 42 car was a mainstay in the Top 5 for much of the event; the car was strongest late in the race, and Montoya wound up battling Kevin Harvick in the latter stages to come home in second place. It was the ninth time in 2007 that the former open wheel star finished as the race's top performing rookie.

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Busch Series Breakdown : Kroger 200

*In a Nutshell:* The tight confines of O'Reilly Raceway Park made for an exciting short track shootout for the Busch Series on Saturday night. *Aric Almirola* ran away with the race early, leading 87 of the first 100 laps, but as the second half of the race unfolded, it was another Busch regular who found his way to Victory Lane. After Almirola faded with problems on pit road, *Jason Leffler* was able to run down and pass *Greg Biffle* with three laps to go, bringing Toyota their first ever victory in the Busch Series. Up until the final stages, Biffle had dominated the race's second half, but Leffler's team decided to put on tires with 50 laps to go, and the fresh rubber ultimately paid off in a mad dash back to the front for the No. 38. Speaking of mad dashes, Biffle was the only Cup regular able to make it over from Indianapolis Motor Speedway for qualifying; the rest of the Buschwhackers had to come from the back of the pack, affording the fans a huge amount of on track passing throughout the entire event. *Who Should Have Won:* *Biffle*. At one point, the No. 16 Ford was in another time zone, as the Biff led 94 of the final 98 laps. But when push came to shove, he simply ran out of tires at the finish, slipping just enough to give Leffler the opening he needed after a late caution.

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Tracking the Trucks : Power Stroke Diesel 200

*In a Nutshell:* Ron Hornaday, Jr. held off a strong charge by Johnny Benson to win the rain-delayed Power Stroke Diesel 200 at O'Reilly Raceway Park. Hornaday's final margin of victory was 0.350 seconds after passing Benson, then Travis Kvapil with 30 laps to go to take the Friday night short track shootout. Kvapil faded to third at the finish, with Rick Crawford and Ken Schrader rounding out the Top 5 behind him. Todd Bodine, after trouble early in the race, battled back to finish sixth, ahead of Erik Darnell; Regan Smith, Jack Sprague, and Brendan Gaughan rounded out the Top 10 finishers. *Who Should Have Won:* *Hornaday, Jr.*. In a field set by points after a qualifying washout, Hornaday started second, giving him valuable track position he never relinquished on a night where his Truck was strong from the start. In contention all night long, Hornaday raced for second with Johnny Benson for more than 30 laps before going to work on then-leader Travis Kvapil. Once he passed them both, there was no getting by the No. 33 Truck, as Hornaday used patience and precision to hold off all challengers en route to his third victory in fourteen races this season.

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The Problem With the Buschwackers Is…There Needs To Be More Of Them!

Of course it isn't breaking news that there is a large disparity in talent and equipment between Busch Series teams owned by Cup team owners such as Childress, Ganassi, Gibbs, Hendrick and the other big time Cup players in comparison to the series' non-Cup-owned teams. Obviously, the Cup participants have both the monetary and engineering resources to put on track equipment that is far superior to teams that compete solely in NASCAR's second-tier series. Plus, they quite often put their more experienced and sometimes more talented Cup drivers in the Busch cars, creating an insurmountable advantage over Busch Series mainstays. This situation has had a fair number of NASCAR fans crying FOUL for quite some time. These pirates are generally referred to as "Buschwackers." And some believe they should be limited or barred from competing in the series. Since that is not practical, I believe for the best interest of race fans, and certainly NASCAR, the goal should be to increase the Cup influence in Busch to provide the very best racing that it can this side of the Nextel Cup series.

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Kyle Busch and the Five Amazing Mentors: A Tale of Speed and Impertinence

Since his outburst about teamwork, or the lack thereof, at Daytona earlier this month, Kyle Busch has been under a microscope that is already on high power as he searches for a new ride for 2008 and beyond. He's been called a whiner, immature and spoiled. His comments were looked at as childish and jealous. Whatever the reasons for his comments or Busch's personality shortcomings, it was brought up that nobody at Hendrick Motorsports has ever taken Busch under his wing. Kyle Busch has never had a mentor, they exclaimed! How could he possibly know better?

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