NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Mirror Driving: A Hamlin-Petty Brawl, Are Dover Pits Too Small? & Team Orders Leave Us Appalled

Kyle Petty and Denny Hamlin got into it at Dover recently, after Petty confronted Hamlin in his car following a nasty incident that sent both drivers to the garage for repairs. Who should be apologizing to who – if anyone – and should NASCAR take action for this incident?

Fantasy Picks ‘N’ Pans: 2007 Dodge Dealers 400 at Dover Edition

With the playoffs moving full steam ahead towards round 2 this weekend, the strategy for your team shouldn’t change all that much. While the Monster Mile has been known to cause damage to its fair share of racecars, it usually doesn’t take too much of a toll on Chase contenders. One or two will most likely take a hit, but the majority will be near the front and finish in the top 15 or better. Which ones have that extra leg up on the rest of their playoff competition, though? Find out in this week’s edition of Fantasy Picks ‘N’ Pans.

Voice of Vito: Dale Earnhardt Jr. & Martin Truex Jr. – How to Handle The Chase for the Championship

The 2007 Chase for the Nextel Cup is finally upon us. With the “drama” that surrounded last week’s Chevy Rock & Roll 400 at Richmond a thing of the past, most fans have now begun to speculate how the twelve title contenders are shaping up to make their run at the title. There is, however, another budding story in the garage as the dust begins to settle. While Dale Earnhardt Jr. missed making the big show for the second time in three years, his teammate, two-time Busch Grand National champion Martin Truex Jr. has made it instead, getting over the hump in just his sophomore season behind the wheel of a Cup car.

Mirror Driving: No Bristol Bumps, Villeneuve Takes His Lumps & Can AT&T Get Back Over The Hump?

With the Chase drama all but played out with two races to go, were drivers at Bristol playing it a little too conservative? Rate how you felt the track did in its first Cup effort since the repaving, and whether we’ll actually have any drama left in the regular season come Richmond.

Matt McLaughlin’s Driver Handicaps: 2007 Michigan Summer Race Edition

Jeff Gordon – Gordon has two wins at Michigan, with the most recent triumph coming in 2001. Overall, he has 20 top-10 finishes in 29 Cup starts in the Irish Hills, with an average finish of 10th… not too shabby.

Matt McLaughlin’s Driver Handicaps: 2007 Watkins Glen Race Edition

Jeff Gordon – Gordon is one of the better NASCAR road racers. While he has four wins at the Glen, oddly enough he hasn’t had a top-10 finish here in five races – he’s finished outside the top 20 in three of those events. But don’t be fooled; Gordon also has five wins at Sonoma, and could easily break out of his road-race slump here.

Voice of Vito: Pat Tryson the Right Man at the Right Time for Kurt Busch

“Pat, buddy, where have you been all my life?!” No, that wasn’t Kurt Busch speaking to new crew chief Pat Tryson following their Sunday victory at Pocono… although it easily could have been. Instead, it was Busch’s former Roush Racing teammate Mark Martin, words spoken following Martin and Tryson’s first race together at Phoenix in 2003. The joy expressed from that fateful day proved a telling insight into what would be a successful future between the two men… a future that Tryson appears ready to relive through the potential of a younger, rising talent.

Who’s Hot/Who’s Not in Nextel Cup: 2007 Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Edition

Unless you’re a glutton for punishment, Kurt Busch, or one of Kurt Busch’s fans (yes – he actually does have some), then you probably found Sunday’s Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono a real snoozefest. Busch started from second position, alongside Dale Earnhardt Jr., but didn’t stay there long; he made a mockery out of the race, leading 175 laps en route to his first win of the year and a spot inside the top 12 in points. Unlike recent weeks, there weren’t any potential Chasers that ran into major trouble on Sunday; the 14 main contenders all finished in the top 17 positions, making the race for the Chase more competitive than ever with just five races remaining.

Running Their Mouth: 2007 Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono

Each week, we’ll go through all the media reports, interviews, PR, and all our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Nextel Cup race to capture 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 the car owners themselves. This week, here’s a sneak peek at what some select few were thinking after the Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway.

Holding a Pretty Wheel: Jeff Gordon Won AGAIN?! & Is Dale Earnhardt Jr. Going to Be Any Good? It was 10 Years Ago…

It’s been an interesting summer for a race fan. The world tilted on its axis when Dale Earnhardt Jr. announced he was leaving Dale Earnhardt Incorporated and practically jumped out of orbit and headed for the Sun when he announced he was going to Hendrick Motorsports; a decision that for many fans was akin to Luke Skywalker saying, “Sure, Darth-I mean Dad, I’ll join the dark side. The good guys aren’t really much fun.” In some respects the point standings look like they did 10 years ago, with Jeff Gordon running away with the lead. The cast of characters in the rest of the top 10 has changed significantly-only Jeff Burton was even in the Nextel Cup Series then.

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