Race Weekend Central

Friday Faceoff: How Much Wrecking Is Too Much?

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade/NKP)

Aric Almirola and the No. 43 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team received penalties for failing laser inspection following the race at Talladega Superspeedway, including a loss of points for Almirola and owner Richard Petty and a three-race suspension and fine for crew chief Drew Blickensderfer.  Did NASCAR do the right thing, staying in line …

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2-Headed Monster: Is NASCAR Downsizing the Way to Go for Success?

This week’s Frontstretch debate question: a number of race teams have been downsizing their organizations in terms of teams in the past few years. Most recently, Roush Fenway Racing wound up in Victory Lane with Ricky Stenhouse Jr. this past weekend after downsizing from three full-time teams in 2016 to two full-time teams in 2017. Does NASCAR downsizing have …

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Aric Almirola Hit with L1 Penalty Post-Talladega

(Photo: Russell LaBounty/NKP)

On Sunday, Aric Almirola‘s No. 43 Smithfield Foods Ford failed the post-race rear wheel steer laser test after finishing fourth at Talladega.  As a result, NASCAR has issued an L1-level penalty against the No. 43 team.  Almirola will lose 35 points and the team loses 35 owners points.  The point penalty will drop Almirola from 17th to …

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The Underdog House: Small Teams Impress at Talladega

(Photo: John K. Harrelson/NKP)

Think Small This past weekend’s action at Talladega illustrated again what can happen when the racing is more in the hands of the drivers. There were several different names at the top eager to display their talent.  Aric Almirola nearly pulled off the weekend double, and David Ragan overcame crash damage to finish in the …

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Thinkin’ Out Loud: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Avoids the Big One, Makes Big Last-Lap Pass At Talladega

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade / NKP)

Who’s in the headline Restrictor plate racetracks are always the great equalizer. This weekend, Talladega Superspeedway’s parity roulette wheel landed on the name Ricky Stenhouse Jr. It wasn’t a shock Stenhouse was able to make it to Victory Lane Sunday, in large part because he had the fastest car in qualifying by a substantial amount. But …

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Almirola Wins Eventful XFINITY Series Race at Talladega

(Photo: Rusty Jarrett NKP)

After a long and eventful Saturday, Aric Almirola took home the win at the Sparks Energy 300 at Talladega Superspeedway. It is his third career XFINITY Series victory and second at a restrictor plate track. He was followed by Elliott Sadler, Joey Logano, Ben Kennedy, and Erik Jones. CATANZARETI: Almirola Continues Plate Racing Success Almirola …

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XFINITY Breakdown: Aric Almirola Continues Plate Racing Success with Talladega Victory

(Photo: Rusty Jarrett NKP)

As they wrecked down the backstretch of Talladega Superspeedway, it was a mirrored finish of last July’s XFINITY Series race at Daytona for Aric Almirola. Except this time, they raced back under green. For the second time on a plate track, it was Almirola who scored the victory for Biagi DenBeste Racing. Leading 13 laps, …

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Did You Notice?: Joe Gibbs Racing Still Lags Behind at One-Quarter Pole

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

Did You Notice? … The difference a year makes for Joe Gibbs Racing? This time last year, JGR had won five of nine races and had all four drivers firmly within playoff position. This time around? The organization is 0-for-9. Of its four-driver team, only Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin are in playoff position. Matt Kenseth hadn’t even led a …

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The Underdog House: Changes in the NASCAR Ranks

(Photo: Russell LaBounty/NKP)

Think Small The 2017 season is at the quarter mark after nine races, and some trends are taking shape.  Wood Brothers Racing has established itself at the top of the class, which was to be expected after the team increased its alliance with Team Penske this year. Even within the group, the haves and have …

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Thinkin’ Out Loud: Logano Pulls Richmond Robbery From Keselowski, Kenseth

(Photo: Rusty Jarrett / NKP)

Who’s In The Headline It took pit strategy to get Joey Logano up front at Richmond International Raceway, but no one on the No. 22 team is complaining this Monday morning. Not when you have a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series trophy on your mantle. After a late caution, while restarting behind cars that stayed on …

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