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Thinkin’ Out Loud

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Pocono-2 Race Recap

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Pocono-2 Race Recap

*The Key Moment* – Kyle Busch got so preoccupied with Jimmie Johnson’s attempted divebomb pass to the inside, a quick move on Turn 1 of the final restart they both flat out let Brad Keselowski get away. *In a Nutshell* – It wasn’t very exciting, there wasn’t a lot of passing and rain caused a two-hour delay but at _least_ the winner wasn’t determined by fuel mileage. Read More »

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Brickyard 400 Race Recap

*The Key Moment *– With three laps to go Paul Menard had saved enough fuel he could relight the afterburners and hold off a hard-charging Jeff Gordon for the final few laps. *In a Nutshell *– A popular first time win by a young man whose family is inextricably linked with the Speedway helps mask the fact this was yet another race decided by fuel strategy, not racing. *Dramatic Moment* – With all their collective racing experience I’m not sure how Matt Kenseth, Jimmie Johnson and David Ragan decided going four-wide into the corner with rookie Landon Cassill was going to be a good idea. It wasn’t. Drivers like Kasey Kahne and Carl Edwards paid the price. Read More »

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Loudon-1 Race Recap

*The Key Moment* – Ryan Newman managed to clear Clint Bowyer on fresher tires immediately following a lap 229 restart and never looked back, scoring his third career victory at New Hampshire Motor Speedway with ease. *In a Nutshell* – Sprint Cup racing, thy name is track position. *Dramatic Moment* – Tony Stewart did everything in his power to tear back through the field and add some tension to his teammate's parade up front, but ended up a few laps short of being able to seriously threaten the No. 39 for the victory. Though Kurt Busch did give him a fight with around 50 to go. Read More »

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Kentucky Cup Race Debacle Recap

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Kentucky Cup Race Debacle Recap

*The Key Moment* – Kyle Busch aced the final restart, then had time to relax and watch the mayhem behind him in the rear-view mirror while cruising to victory. *In a Nutshell* – Busch let loose on the field most of the night with an old-fashioned butt-whoopin’. *Dramatic Moment* – Well, there sure weren’t a lot of them to select from, were there? I’d say the last two laps were the only part of the race that got my pulse rate up. Read More »

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Firecracker 400 Race Recap

*The Key Moment* – David Ragan, with an essential assist from teammate Matt Kenseth, got some sweet redemption after his miscue shifting lanes prior to a restart at the Daytona 500. *In a Nutshell* – There they went marching in their packs of two, Professional drivers reduced to playing Jabbering monkeys and jackasses To be part of Noah France’s plate track seaside zoo. *Dramatic Moment* – Well the last five laps of the race were pretty unpredictable and equally violent. I guess some people like that. Read More »

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Sonoma Race Recap

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Sonoma Race Recap

*The Key Moment* – Kurt Busch started Sunday's race in the 11th position. By lap 13, the elder Busch dove under Denny Hamlin in turn 7 and took the lead. Short of pit stops cycling through, the lead was not a position Busch relinquished for long. *In a Nutshell* – The No. 22 team woke up and realized that Kurt Busch still hasn't won a points-paying plate race in a decade of Cup competition; so, they figured they'd grab a win before heading to Daytona. And no one saw fit to really challenge them for it. Read More »

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Michigan-1 Race Recap

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: Michigan-1 Race Recap

*The Key Moment* – Denny Hamlin emerged first from the pits on the final caution and held off a determined Matt Kenseth for the final five laps. *In a Nutshell* – It was a long wait for a brief payoff there at the end. *Dramatic Moment* – Those final five laps the drivers finally seemed to disengage cruise control and get up on the wheel. *What They’ll Be Talking About Around the Water Cooler This Week* First off, *thanks to Junior* for sparing us yet another fuel mileage finish. Read More »

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: 2011 World 600 Race Recap

*The Key Moment* – Dale Earnhardt Junior ran out of gas exiting the fourth corner on the final lap allowing Kevin Harvick to streak by and claim his third win of the season. *In a Nutshell* – I don’t think Moe, Larry and Curly could have done a worse job of officiating a race than NASCAR did tonight. But then NASCAR has a lot more than three stooges. *Dramatic Moment* – Waiting to see who was going to run out of gas on those final two laps. Read More »