Race Weekend Central

5 Points to Ponder: Inside the Sprint Cup Rumor Mill

With the Cup Series taking a rare weekend off, this week’s Five Points will try and help sort out the rampant rumors you may have seen throughout this year’s Silly Season. When the Frontstretch live blog returns next week at Indianapolis, the column’s regular format will also return.

Nationwide Series Breakdown: 2009 Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 at Gateway

On a rare weekend where the Nationwide Series was the only show in town, Cup regulars were nonetheless the story all night long… though a different face did most of the dominating. With announcements swirling that he would be doing more Nationwide driving in his own No. 33 car next season, Kevin Harvick led over …

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Kevin Harvick’s Gamble Pays Off for Kyle Busch in 2009 Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 at Gateway

There are a few things that one can usually count on when the Nationwide Series comes to Gateway International Raceway near St. Louis; hot weather, a Wallace or two (or three) will be racing and a long green-flag run sometime during the race. Last Saturday night’s presentation of the Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 at GIR …

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What’s Vexing Vito: Kevin Harvick’s Potential Move To Stewart-Haas Racing Has Long-Lasting Implications

Kevin Harvick may have just pulled the pin on the Silly Season grenade. It used to be late summer and fall when the rumor mill would heat up with stories of defections, sponsor swaps, or new teams entering the fray for the coming year. Nowadays, it usually begins just about the time the first Gatorade …

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Fanning the Flames: NASCAR’s “Terminology Guidelines” & The Return of Silly Season

Q: Kevin Harvick or Brad Keselowski? Or maybe even Danica Patrick? It must be nice to be Stewart and Rick Hendrick. This wasn’t thought to be much of a free-agent year, but it looks like SHR has some attractive options. I’d have to go with Harvick. The fit is a perfect one. Thoughts?

Who’s Hot/Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: 2009 Lenox Industrial Tools 301 at Loudon Edition

Joey Logano stole some history at New Hampshire on Sunday, becoming the youngest driver to win a Sprint Cup race by not pitting his No. 20 Home Depot Toyota during the last round of pit stops, taking a gamble and hoping for rain at his home track. Crew chief Greg Zipadelli’s decision quickly made up for Logano’s run-in with Ryan Newman, as well as the resulting flat tire and spin that resulted from it midway through the race. But while Logano’s upset victory continues to be the big story, there were a few other upstart runs, as well, considering that rained-out qualifying placed the top points contenders in the top-starting positions.

Tony Stewart Brings Home Maiden Victory for His Own Team, Wins 2009 Pocono 500

In the Sprint Cup Series, it has become incredibly rare for owner-drivers to win. In fact, it had been over 10 years since the last time it had happened (Note: Dale Earnhardt does not count here because he was not driving one of his own cars). On Sunday, Tony Stewart achieved the feat. Despite having …

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Happy Hour’s Best Drivers In NASCAR, Part 1: Drivers #15-11

Being the Official Columnist of NASCAR is not an easy job. It’s not a matter of simply handing over a few million to NASCAR, as with most “official” entities. It takes effort. Column topics must be selected with care, as opposed to just hitting the escape key and writing something about Junior when news is dull. A thoughtful angle that no one else has observed should be provided. A position has to be taken on racing issues of the day.

OK, that’s B.S. This job is fun and the difficulty level is in stark contrast with my salary of untold millions.

Still, while my “official” title is self-proclaimed, it does carry certain responsibilities, and among them is one that I have long tried to avoid. And that is deciding upon and sharing who I think are the best drivers in the sport today. There isn’t any right answer. No matter who I put in my list here, someone will take issue with some or all of it. That’s okay; that’s great in fact, because maybe in a discussion I could learn some things that I didn’t know.

Who’s Hot/Who’s Not in Sprint Cup: 2009 Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Edition

The conclusion of the Anti-Climatic 600 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway Monday leaves the NASCAR fanbase wondering exactly which driver should have won. Since the race began in the middle of the day on Monday instead of early in the evening on Sunday, drivers did not have to encounter as many changes in track conditions as …

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