Race Weekend Central

Happy Hour: Return of the Forgotten Busch Brother

After an almost inexplicable collapse in the Chase last year, one that was largely due to mechanical failures rather than driver errors, Kyle Busch in 2009 has reverted to being the dominating force he was in 2008. Once again, the driver of the No. 18 car has been making noise that cannot be ignored, scoring …

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Grading the 2009 Sprint Cup Pack: Part 2

NASCAR’s longest and most grueling race, the Coca-Cola 600, represents a significant milestone in the 2009 season. It’s not quite the halfway point to the Chase (that comes the following week after Dover), but once the checkers fly late Sunday evening, we’re exactly one-third of the way through the 36-race schedule.

With that in mind, it’s a good time to take a step back and look at how the Sprint Cup contenders (and pretenders) have performed thus far. As you might expect here at Frontstretch, we’re going to conduct a proper two-part analysis of the season to date. Yesterday’s installment gave out some superlative awards; today, Tom Bowles and I team up to grade each team on their overall performance through the first three months of ’09. Feel free to not only read, but comment below and let us know how you feel your favorite teams and drivers have done!

Frontstretch Fantasy Insider: Taming the Beast of the Southeast

With the All-Star Race behind us, it’s back to points racing with one of NASCAR’s most prestigious and demanding events, the season’s only 600-mile race. Since its repaving, Lowe’s Motor Speedway has been home to fast and treacherous competition, with side by side in the corners proving next to impossible to control for drivers struggling with the handling of their racecars. A true test of man and machine, Sunday’s race will be a battle of attrition and adjustment as the track transitions from day to night. But just like Jeff Gordon’s back, the Frontstretch Fantasy Insider is ready to get your fantasy teams through 600 miles… and when our picks go three-wide, expect them to come out unscathed.

Grading the 2009 Sprint Cup Pack: Part 1

NASCAR’s longest and most grueling race, the Coca-Cola 600, represents a significant milestone in the 2009 season. It’s not quite the halfway point to the Chase (that comes the following week after Dover), but once the checkers fly late Sunday evening, we’re exactly one-third of the way through the 36-race schedule. With that in mind, it’s a good time to take a step back and look at how the Sprint Cup contenders (and pretenders) have performed thus far.

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 Heading Into the 2009 Coca-Cola 600

The All-Star Race is supposed to feature the cream of the crop, a chance for Sprint Cup’s top tier to go head-to-head in a battle royale with nothing but money and pride on the line. And after a tame beginning, this race featuring a Who’s Who of stock car stardom refused to disappoint, with drivers continuing to beat and bang throughout the last 10 laps of the 25th annual shootout. When the Smoke cleared, it was Smoke himself taking his first trophy as an owner/driver in the series, a move which easily solidified his hold atop our weekly list.

But while Tony Stewart leads the pack, how did the rest of your favorite stars fare heading into the Coca-Cola 600? Read on to see if your driver made the most of his All-Star appearance Saturday night to move up our Power Rankings ladder.

Running Their Mouth: 2009 Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte

Each week, we’ll go through media reports, interviews, PR and all of our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Sprint Cup race, capturing the story of how the weekend unfolded. It’s the most original commentary you’ll ever find: the truth, coming straight out of the mouths of the drivers, crew members and car owners themselves. This week, here’s a peek at what the drivers were thinking following the Sprint All-Star Race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway.

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2009 Southern 500

The Track Too Tough to Tame may have a new surface, but she’s that same old fickle girl. The rankings may not have taken a DNF at Darlington, but they certainly earned their stripe with the list all scrambled after 500 miles there Saturday night. Former champions are hogging the top of the charts, but as you’ll see this week, our experts didn’t ignore a promising rookie who survived the Lady in Black. Read on to see if your driver stayed off of the wall or ended up in the minnow pond this weekend during the Southern 500.

Frontstretch NASCAR Power Rankings: Top 15 After the 2009 Crown Royal 400 at Richmond

Some retro short-track racing in Virginia provided a lot of high-powered action Saturday night, with the end result a record 15 caution flags and a late-race pit strategy that left the standings jumbled all the way up until the checkered flag. That unpredictability factored right into our own Power Rankings this week, as 14 out …

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Running Their Mouth: 2009 Crown Royal Presents The Russ Friedman 400 at Richmond

Each week, we’ll go through media reports, interviews, PR and all of our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Sprint Cup race, capturing the story of how the weekend unfolded. It’s the most original commentary you’ll ever find: the truth, coming straight out of the mouths of the drivers, crew members and car owners themselves. This week, here’s a peek at what the drivers were thinking following the Russ Friedman 400 presented by Crown Royal at Richmond International Raceway.

Thompson in Turn 5: Kurt Busch, Welcome Back

Largely lost in the hubbub surrounding Sunday’s action-packed contest at Talladega Superspeedway that culminated with a spectacular crash, a win by a part-time Sprint Cup driver with only five starts under his belt and surprising finishes by the likes of Scott Speed, Joey Logano and Marcos Ambrose was the fact that Kurt Busch is now leading …

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