Recent Posts

Jimmie Johnson, Martinsville Prove It’s the Drivers That Have Changed — Not The Racing

Jimmie Johnson won at Martinsville. Nothing’s changed, right? Wrong. The last two races on the Sprint Cup circuit prior to Sunday had showcased drastic changes to the sport, and none of them have been completely well-received. At Atlanta Motor Speedway, NASCAR’s new race car proved to be a continuing nightmare for tire development, as the majority of drivers in the field spent the day struggling to find grip on a track notorious for being one of the friendliest in terms of offering multiple grooves for drivers to make a fast lap. Said Jeff Gordon of the new car/tire package, “I will challenge any tire manufacturer out there to build a tire for this car at this race track. It’s impossible.”

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Five Points to Ponder: 2009 Goody’s Fast Pain Relief 500 at Martinsville Edition

*Mr. Martinsville* Nobody can accuse Jimmie Johnson of being too boring or too perfect anymore. The man dubbed “Mr. Martinsville” by teammate Jeff Gordon drove deep into Turn 1 with 16 laps to go and body-slammed Denny Hamlin for the lead and eventual win Sunday. The pass was not perfect, a little daring, and showed a side we haven’t seen much of from the three-time defending champion – hunger.

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Jiminy Cricket! Scott Speed Gets to Kyle Busch’s Conscience at Martinsville!

*Scott Speed:* *Start: 36th (Set by Owner Points); Finish: 39th* *Summary:* Scott Speed may very well have made history on Sunday afternoon during the Goody’s Fast Pain Relief 500… he made Kyle Busch apologize. No, he didn’t threaten the younger Busch brother with violence; just being involved in an incident with the Joe Gibbs Racing driver was enough. With owner points shuffling the starting order, crew chiefs with cars in the back of the pack were forced to get creative when scheming to get their driver good track position -- and Jimmy Elledge was no exception.

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Bubble Breakdown: Toyota Bubble Teams Struggle Mightily at Martinsville While Menard Sneaks In

The last remnants of the 2008 season have finally been cast by the wayside, as NASCAR now uses this year's owner points in determining who has a guaranteed starting spot and who has to qualify on time. But as the drivers now outside of the top 35 readied themselves to give it all they had at Martinsville in order to qualify for the race on Friday -- it rained. So, the field was set according to the owner standings, sending the last four cars back to their shops while the top 43 lined up Sunday afternoon. Of the ones that remained, which drivers were able to race their way up into the top 35 for the first time under the 2009 point system? Read on in this week’s edition of The Bubble Breakdown to see who moved up and who dropped out.

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Jimmie Johnson Claims Yet Another Victory at Martinsville for Hendrick Motorsports

On Sunday, Hendrick Motorsports celebrated the 25th Anniversary of their first victory in the then-Winston Cup Series. Back then, the team, then known as All-Star Racing, fielded the winning No. 5 for Geoff Bodine. Today, Jimmie Johnson capped off the anniversary celebration in the best way possible for Hendrick Motorsports. …

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Big Six: 2009 Goody’s Fast Pain Relief 500 at Martinsville

Who… gets my shoutout of the race? Do you think Team Red Bull is sorry yet? While Scott Speed tangled with Kyle Busch at Martinsville and finished 39th, the man he replaced, A.J. Allmendinger, had another impressive finish for Richard Petty Motorsports, bringing the No. 44 home in ninth place. …

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For Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Does Fun Trump Having It All?

At the top level of NASCAR, there are so many factors to consider every week. There are sponsors to please, fans to appease, and an owner to answer to. Your job is to try to win races and ultimately the championship. And that’s not just at the top. Don’t think for a second that that is any less Robby Gordon’s goal than it is Jeff Gordon’s, because no matter how lacking the equipment might be, racers race to win, to get the best finish within their power, to bring home the highest points position they can claw their way into. Racing should never stop being fun, and as Ken Schrader said, when it stops being fun, it’s time to retire. But that doesn’t mean that fun can be the top priority anymore. I always liked that Dale Earnhardt, Jr. is the person he is. He doesn’t try to be something he’s not, and he’s always had fun, because he surrounds himself with people he has fun with. The problem is, it seems to be more about the fun than the drive to win.

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Travis Kvapil’s Situation Is Sad – But It’s The Reality

It’s a bummer to watch Travis Kvapil be out of a ride because of the harsh realities of motorsports. As I write this, and as "Tom Bowles explained so lucidly":https://frontstretch.com/tbowles/23168/ on Monday, a freak combination of owner points transfers and bad luck has resulted in Yates’ suspending operations of its famed No. 28 shop indefinitely. Of course, there is some sentiment for Davey Allison, Havoline, or the glory days of Yates...not to mention Kvapil, a driver whom no one seems to dislike. It is to be expected. But hopefully people do not get too caught up in the sentimental aspect of this. We can talk about how Kvapil’s situation reflects an ongoing problem NASCAR has--the difficulty of teams finding sponsorship in tough economic times. There is certainly truth to that. Drivers less worthy than Kvapil are on the track in Sprint Cup races every week, because they’re more marketable, better looking, or have an easier name to spell, and so sponsors gravitate to them. Yes, that’s troubling, but as long as companies fund racecars, you’re going to have this.

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Kenny Wallace Driver Diary: I Love Being a Racecar Driver

Here’s what I want to make sure everybody knows. I’m a racecar driver. All of this started with the weekends at the racetrack. I have a hundred people come up and tell me how good I did, but there were always that one or two people who asked me if I was still racing. I said to myself, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me.’ It bothered me a little bit. I tried hard not to let things bother me that are negative. I work really hard at staying positive, although I will admit it’s a lot of work.

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Driven to the Past: One of the Friendships I Treasure…

One of the oldest friends I have in racing is Bill Kimmel of Clarksville, Ind., and I’m proud to have the rest of the Kimmels as friends as well. Bill is the patriarch of a very proud racing family, and is of course the father of Frank Kimmel, the eight-time ARCA champion, and his big brother Bill Jr., the crew chief on that operation. I first came in contact with Bill Kimmel when he was racing what we called “hardtops” at the Jeffersonville (Ind.) Sportsdrome in 1949 and I was selling National Speed Sport News as a kid of not quite eleven years of age. Those were mostly 1939-41 Ford coupes and sedans, with a Hudson or two from the same time period thrown in. We had a real interesting introduction.

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