Saturday , September 20 2014
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Amy Henderson

Wallace and Team Trying To Score One For the Good Guys

Wallace and Team Trying To Score One For the Good Guys

Sponsorship is always a hot topic in racing and in the current economic environment, many teams, even some top Sprint Cup teams, are worried about sponsor dollars. And in the Nationwide Series, that talk is often doubled. There has been growing concern over the last decade as more Sprint Cup drivers are entering more Nationwide Series races. Sponsors love to get on the hood of a big star at a reduced rate, and so they flock to those teams like flies to honey and teenage girls to Kasey Kahne. This left many longtime and full time Nationwide teams without sponsorship, and many out of business altogether as the Cup teams have pushed them aside. The trend has turned off many longtime series fans, as well, as they watched their favorite teams and driver fall by the wayside. Now fans have a chance to change that. Read More »

Secret Star/Stat of the Race: Infineon

*Secret Star of the Race-The Best Run You Never Saw* After being nearly fired, any race probably feels pretty darn good. When you haven’t had a top 10 since Daytona, any top 10 is a small victory. So *Elliott Sadler*’s 10th-place run at Infineon was a small victory-but if you blinked you probably missed it, because Sadler didn’t get much airtime in the process. It was, in fact, a pretty good day to be a Richard Petty Motorsports driver-three RPM ... Read More »

Big Six: Toyota/Save Mart 350

Who…gets my shoutout of the race? Running on a smaller budget is usually not indicative of a great finish, but someone forgot to give *Marcos Ambrose* that memo. Ambrose once again showed his considerable road racing skill as he was alternately patient and aggressive in his march from the back of the field (where he was relegated after a pre-race engine change) to third at the checkers. If you aren’t impressed, you must have been watching a different race. What…was ... Read More »

Big Six: LifeLock 400

*Who…gets my shoutout of the race?* I’ve never had a problem with fuel mileage racing-it’s certainly exciting in its own way. Who would have thought the lead would change twice on the last lap because two different leaders ran out of gas. The mileage issue proved the old adage about better lucky than good, because until he ran out of fuel on the final lap, *Jimmie Johnson* had the field covered all day long, putting out a dominant performance and ... Read More »

Too Vanilla Or Too Obnoxious?  Where’s the Middle Ground?

Too Vanilla Or Too Obnoxious? Where’s the Middle Ground?

It isn’t easy to please race fans. That becomes evident in any discussion about drivers. One guy isn’t talented enough, and if he has a family name with a racing history, well then, by gum, he’d better live up to it or else! The next is too talented, apparently, because he wins too much, whatever that means. It’s a sport, winning is kind of the point… But I digress. Then there is the constant back-and-forth about the driver who, for whatever reason, is perceived as “boring” and the one who is an “obnoxious jerk.” Read More »

Big Six: Pocono 500

*Who…gets my shoutout of the race?* When racing gets down to fuel mileage, there is the potential for a shakeup in the finishing order, and this week was no exception. That’s not a knock on mileage racing-it’s a part of the game and the drivers that finish well still had to race all day to get in that position, usually gambling to do so. One driver who really benefited from the strategy was *Marcos Ambrose*, who finished sixth for the ... Read More »

The Wheel Files: Conspiracy Theories Alive and Well in NASCAR

The Wheel Files: Conspiracy Theories Alive and Well in NASCAR

Did you hear? NASCAR wants Kyle Busch to win the championship and will do anything to make sure he does. NASCAR doesn’t want Hendrick Motorsports to win another title, either. And the reason they don’t publish the rulebook or specific punishments is so they can punish based on who they want to win and who they don’t. And let’s not forget that they really don’t want independent teams in the sport and will go about slowly eliminating them, one by one. All secretly. Cue the whistly, sort-of scary music and bring on the slightly harangued FBI agent who works in the attic because nobody else will work next to his lunchbox, which contains Limburger cheese every day since 1982, because there is a conspiracy afoot. Or so legions of NASCAR fans would have us believe. To hear some fans tell it, NASCAR picks and chooses who is going to succeed, and who is going to fail. And maybe the weather, too. Read More »

Big Six: Autism Speaks 400

*Who…Gets my shoutout of the race?* A driver who quietly had an outstanding weekend, *Casey Mears* had a strong finish at a difficult track. After hovering near the top ten on the speed charts since Friday, Mears brought it home in ninth, the highest finishing position in the Richard Childress Racing stable. Though a midpack driver most of this season, Mears has had his strongest runs at two of the series’ most demanding tracks-Richmond and now Dover. A lot of ... Read More »

The Time is Now for Earnhardt, Jr. as Eury, Jr. Departs

The Time is Now for Earnhardt, Jr. as Eury, Jr. Departs

The announcement that much of NASCAR Nation has been waiting for with bated breath came Thursday: Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and crew chief Tony Eury, Jr. will part ways, effective immediately. Hendrick Motorsports team manager Brian Whitesell will be on top of the pit box this weekend at Dover, and then veteran head wrench Lance McGrew will take the reins on an interim basis while a permanent replacement is sought. Both Whitesell and McGrew have found victory lane as crew chiefs, Whitesell with Jeff Gordon and McGrew with several drivers from the Camping World Truck Series and up. Though it is easy to lose sight of with the way things have been going, Earnhardt has a decent record himself-his 18 Cup wins rank ninth among active drivers. He has more wins than Carl Edwards, Greg Biffle, or Kyle Busch, in fact. The majority of his success came with a crew chief other than Eury, Jr. All of which adds up to mean only one thing. It’s do or die time. Read More »

Big Six: Sprint All-Star Race

Big Six: Sprint All-Star Race

*Who…gets my shoutout of the race?* I’m going to take a hard right turn from the norm and award a winner in this. He wasn’t the million-dollar winner, but I’d be willing to bet that *Sam Hornish, Jr.* felt like a million dollars after winning the Sprint Showdown. While not an official points race, the victory was Hornish’s first in a stock car. While due credit should be given to improving Penske equipment, Hornish is doing a fair job of steady improvement himself these days. Sure, the big names werne’t there to contend with, but Hornish proved his mettle against the best of the rest on Saturday. Read More »