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Author Archives: Frontstretch Staff

The Frontstretch Staff is made up of a group of talented men and women spread out all over the United States and Canada. Residing in 15 states throughout the country, plus Ontario, and widely ranging in age, the staff showcases a wide variety of diverse opinions that will keep you coming back for more week in and week out.
Mirror Driving: Turning The Page Towards Testing And 2011

Mirror Driving: Turning The Page Towards Testing And 2011

*Taking a final look back at the 2010 season, what was the biggest story of the year, and why?* 
Amy: I have to go with Jimmie Johnson's fifth in a row. The odds against that have to be astronomical.
 Mike N.: I agree with Johnson. It is an unprecedented feat that we may never see again… at least until he wins number six this year. Jeff: Obviously not unprecedented with this system. Read More »

Mirror Driving: Earnhardt Extension, Delaying Drama, And A TV-Less Banquet?

Mirror Driving: Earnhardt Extension, Delaying Drama, And A TV-Less Banquet?

*The banquet has gotten a lot of flak in recent years for being, well, too boring; even a recent switch to Las Vegas hasn't helped. But should the banquet even be a made-for-television event in the first place?* Amy: If you hate this question, blame Bowles the editor... he made me replace a good one about Scott Speed with it. Phil: It should be televised to a certain extent, but it doesn't need to be a sideshow. 
Kyle: Well, 1) it's not made for television. 2) it needs to be tweaked if it's going to be on TV.
 Read More »

Mirror Driving: Rating The Champions, Keeping The King’s Legacy Intact,More

*There was a lot of hype leading into Sunday's Ford 400, with the closest Chase in history. The Chase aside, did the race live up to expectations, or was the bar set too high to ever realistically be cleared?* Jeff: The race was fine. Phil: No, it didn't live up to the hype. There was way too much to begin with. Amy: I alternated between thinking that stupid points ticker was really cool and wanting to shoot my TV. Read More »

Mirror Driving: An End For Earnhardt, Celebration Station And Fuel Mileage Follies

Mirror Driving: An End For Earnhardt, Celebration Station And Fuel Mileage Follies

*When Phoenix became a fuel mileage gamble, Denny Hamlin came up the loser, and his 12th-place finish cut Hamlin's points lead in half. Which driver — Jimmie Johnson or Kevin Harvick — has the best chance of knocking Hamlin off the top spot at Homestead?* Summer: You can't bet against a four-time champion. Amy: Anywhere else it would be Jimmie Johnson, but I'm going with Harvick for two reasons. 1) He's the best of the three historically at Homestead and 2) He has absolutely nothing to lose. Mike N.: The obvious answer is Johnson because he can actually do it without any help from Hamlin. Harvick, even if he wins the race, still needs a bunch of help from the other two guys. Read More »

Mirror Driving: Who’s Your Chase Favorite? And Changing The Points… For Nationwide

Mirror Driving: Who’s Your Chase Favorite? And Changing The Points… For Nationwide

*The race at Texas featured a swap of the point lead, with Denny Hamlin taking the top spot by a margin of 33 markers over Jimmie Johnson. Is it safe to say he's got this one in the bag, or can J.J. or Kevin Harvick make a comeback?* Amy: Hamlin’s had it in the bag since Loudon - just didn't tip his hand. If you look at his late Chase stats last year, you knew he was going to be a contender. Phil: But Johnson or Harvick could make a comeback; any of the three could easily walk out of Phoenix with the lead. Plus Johnson is very, very strong in Phoenix. Garrett: I think Hamlin has it in the bag, because if he finishes 15th… of course it’s not in the bag! Read More »

Mirror Driving: Shortened Fields, New Car Blues, And Crying Over Kyle?

*Sunday's race at Talladega was kind to the top three Chase contenders, with all three finishing in the top 10. Both Denny Hamlin and Jimmie Johnson achieved their finishes in part by running at the back of the field for much of the day, with Johnson "turning it on" and jumping from 23rd to second in eight laps. Can NASCAR encourage drivers to race all day at Daytona and Talladega, or is it a lost cause? And does 87 lead changes still make for a good race with the real contenders in the back, just biding their time?* Phil: Well, NASCAR can't force the drivers to race the way they want them to. Jeff: People have been “riding it out” at plate tracks forever. Dale Jarrett was famous for it. Read More »

Mirror Driving: Who’s Got The Chase Edge? Is Hornaday A Hall of Famer? And R-P-M

Mirror Driving: Who’s Got The Chase Edge? Is Hornaday A Hall of Famer? And R-P-M

*As usual, Martinsville didn't disappoint, with plenty of frayed tempers and surprise finishers throughout the top 20. Who has the most reason to be upset at whom, and what name near the top of the finishing order surprised you the most?* Jeff: Dale Jr. surprised me. Jeff Gordon has the biggest reason to be upset. Amy: Regan Smith should be the most upset. Speed and Hornish's little pissing match ended up with him in the wall. Beth: I agree with Amy here: Regan Smith got screwed. Phil: Yep, Regan was running decent and not doing anything wrong. He just happened to be in the wrong place when Speed and Hornish got wrecked. Regan seems to be a nice guy, based on the three minutes I got with him in Watkins Glen. I guess they really do finish last. Read More »

Mirror Driving: Final Grades On The Nationwide CoT, Chase Surprises, And “Favorites”

Mirror Driving: Final Grades On The Nationwide CoT, Chase Surprises, And “Favorites”

*The Chase field was set at Richmond. Looking back to the beginning of the year, are there any surprises?* Summer: I think people were surprised at how well and how quickly RCR rebounded. Mark Martin is another one. After his season last year, 2010 has been basically catastrophic.
 Garrett: Yeah, Mark Martin not making it is a big surprise. Phil: I'm not surprised at anyone in this group. They've all been there before. Read More »

Mirror Driving: Tony The Tiger, The Quiet Fight (Kahne-Newman), And Dirty Deeds

Mirror Driving: Tony The Tiger, The Quiet Fight (Kahne-Newman), And Dirty Deeds

*Tony Stewart took home his first win of 2010 with just one race to go before points reset for the Chase. Does that give Stewart an advantage, with momentum on his side at Richmond and beyond... or would you rather be in someone like Kevin Harvick's shoes, where Stewart was one year ago?* Amy: I'd rather be Jimmie Johnson. But if Stewart still has the momentum after Richmond, he's in a great spot as he's a very streaky driver. Phil: Well, I think I'd rather be Harvick as compared to Stewart, since he'll have more bonus points at the start of the Chase. Read More »

Mirror Driving: Funding Gordon, Driver Vs. Team, And Park, Please Come Back!

currently without a full-time sponsor for 2011. Just how troubling is that in the context of the sport as a whole? And who will end up on the side of his car next year?* Phil: Very troubling. Gordon's a marketable person. He should be able to get something. Summer: Well it sounds like Wal-Mart won't be. I don't know, though, and I find that kind of scary. You hear people calling Gordon and Jimmie Johnson “corporate robots” all the time. You'd think someone would want him! Read More »