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NASCAR News Recap – November 14, 2008

Chad Chaffin Driving For Key Motorsports at Homestead Key Motorsports announced on Thursday that Chaffin will be driving the No. 40 Chevrolet in the Ford 200 at Homestead this weekend. Chaffin will be sitting in place of Jeff Green, who has decided to go hunting instead, and Mike Bliss, who …

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Fanning the Flames: Talking IROC, Driver Cash And The Perp Who Got Away With One

*Q: Matt, let me preface my question by saying this: I know we are dealing with NASCAR, so there is no such thing as consistency. But how is it that [David] Gilliland gets parked for wrecking [Juan Pablo] Montoya one week and [Matt] Kenseth gets off after wrecking a whole pack of cars the next?* *No points? No fine? No nothing??? Whatever.* _— David Patrick_ *A:* Well, judging by the opinions I’ve read on this very site all week, mine may not be a popular take, but here goes...

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Matt McLaughlin Mouths Off: Official NASCAR Sponsors Taking Money Away From Teams

A news item earlier this week probably flew well beneath most fans' radar screens, but it raised my blood pressure up a notch or two. It hearkens back to comments I made in last week’s "column":https://frontstretch.com/mmclaughlin/21472/ that touched on NASCAR's current economic crisis. Some fans reading that have written to strongly support my opinion; but apparently, no one in Daytona Beach is getting the message. In case you missed it, this week NASCAR offered up "news" in one of their turgid press releases to the effect that O’Reilly Auto Parts is now the Official Auto Parts Supplier of NASCAR. As such, the memo noted the deal allows for O’Reilly Auto Parts to be "an exclusive NASCAR partner, and utilize NASCAR marks and marketing programs in store and in related media."

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Don’t Worry! NASCAR Is In Capable Hands For 2009 and Beyond

Yes, you read the headline correctly. And yes, you correctly (I hope) recognized right away that it is probably the best example of literary sarcasm ever written by me. As you read the following words, I want you to remember these two old adages. - It is better to remain silent and appear a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt, and... - If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle ‘em with BS.

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Fantasy Picks ‘N’ Pans: How To Hold Your Own Homestead Trophy Celebration

The 2008 Sprint Cup season started 10 months ago in Daytona, traveled through the North, South, East, and West; and now, it all comes down to this. After 35 races, your fantasy team is on the verge of taking home the trophy; or, you need to make a desperation move to get past the leader. Homestead has been on the schedule since 1999, seen six different winners, and remained the track where the Chase was decided in all five years of its existence. Only hosting one race per season gives gamers a little pause, though, because there is no body of work with the new car design to fall back on. With drivers trying to extend winning streaks, others auditioning for jobs, and two men still competing for the title, any number of scenarios could play out.

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NASCAR News Recap for November 13, 2008

Dale Earnhardt Inc. Merging With Chip Ganassi Racing For 2009 Season Strapped for sponsor dollars, Dale Earnhardt, Incorporated will join forces with Chip Ganassi Racing to field a four car Sprint Cup operation in 2009. The team’s name will be Earnhardt Ganassi Racing. Martin Truex, Jr. will drive a No. …

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Manufacturer Involvement In NASCAR – Hanging On By A Thread

Should Brian France ever relinquish his title of Grand Poobah of NASCAR, he would probably have a successful career as a modern day politician. He has managed the delicate task of alienating both the base – the core NASCAR fan who had been tuning in since Brett Bodine was behind …

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Did You Notice? Hendrick Layoffs, Ratings Reality, And Gordon’s Age?

*Did You Notice?* … Jeff Gordon in the pre-race show on Sunday? When ESPN was interviewing him, I’ve never seen the guy look so old. Heck, he was talking about having breathing problems in his car! It’s hard to believe as a guy who was just a wide-eyed kid when a 21-year-old Gordon took the wheel the day of Richard Petty’s last race. But at 37, Gordon’s not such a young pup anymore when it comes to the new NASCAR. Of the Top 25 in the current point standings, only Bobby Labonte, Jeff Burton, and Tony Stewart are older – and in Stewart’s case, it’s only by a matter of a couple of months. Someone asked me recently why Hendrick has kept the slow-to-develop Landon Cassill lying around. My answer? With Gordon, I’m sure he understands that you get to the point where you never know what the future might bring. 2009 will mark Gordon’s 17th full season on the Cup tour… and sometimes, you’ve got to wonder if he’s willing to go past 20.

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Jamie McMurray: Predictions Of His Demise Were Premature

Roush Fenway Racing appears to be heading into 2009 with all five of its cars hitting on all cylinders. Considering four of those men will finish the year 13th or better in Sprint Cup points, that's hardly a big surprise. But to have the fifth car suddenly running with the rest ... it's something you couldn't have imagined as little as six months ago. But Jamie McMurray’s late season charge has been both impressive and unexpected -- especially when you consider he was the "victim" of a Silly Season move that never happened. Remember, the Joplin, Missouri native had been reported to be out of a ride at Roush Fenway Racing back in early June. And when reports surfaced that McMurray would be ousted from the leading Ford team's stable, perhaps as early as the end of this year, few would have called themselves surprised. After three years of struggle and just one victory, many had already concluded that changes were inevitable -- changes that could only mean Jack Roush giving up the ghost and starting anew with the No. 26 Crown Royal team.

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Mirror Driving: Matt Kenseth’s Punt, Merger Meltdown, And NASCAR’s TV Tragedy

*After 4 1/2 hours and two delays, ABC made the decision to switch coverage of the race to ESPN2 so they could show America's Funniest Home Videos. Was that a serious blow to the sport, or an unavoidable move due to race length? And if Jimmie Johnson wasn't winning the race handily, would the network have made the same move?* Beth: America's Funniest Home Videos could have waited -- and it probably would have if Jimmie had been running the way he was last week at Texas. Bryan: Regardless of whether or not it was contractual, it certainly didn't help the sport to get moved for an overplayed TV crap-pot. Amy: It wasn't anything major. The announcers said it was a contractual obligation; as in, a legally binding document that dictated the programming. The contract was likely written months, if not years ago – meaning NASCAR should have looked at the fine print.

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