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Nationwide Series Breakdown: STP 300

Nationwide Series Breakdown: STP 300

The good news for Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and his No. 6 team on Sunday was that the event marked a return to championship form. For the first time this summer, the defending champions were the class of the field. The bad news? That still wasn’t enough. Though Stenhouse was running down Elliott Sadler in the closing laps, a late-race yellow bunched up the field and left the event up to a final restart. On that restart, Justin Allgaier gave Sadler a huge shove down the frontstretch, which provided all the No. 2 team needed to score their third win of the 2012 season and first since Bristol way back in March. Stenhouse, Allgaier, Kenny Wallace, and Michael Annett rounded out the top 5. The late caution interrupted what had been a largely green event, one of only five yellows to fly Sunday afternoon. Read More »

Three Reasons Chicagoland’s the Wrong Place for Nationwide’s Sunday

Three Reasons Chicagoland’s the Wrong Place for Nationwide’s Sunday

There’s a number of things “wrong” with the Chicagoland Speedway. It’s about as cookie-cutter as cookie-cutters come. Despite having the name of the Windy City in its title, the venue is about as close to Chicago as the ill-fated Nashville Superspeedway was to the Music City. It’s hold the (in)distinction of kicking off the abomination known as the Chase on the Cup side. And on the Nationwide side, though it’s hard to complain about a standalone weekend that sees the AAA ranks get their shot at a Sunday race date where they’re center stage, Chicagoland Speedway’s the wrong venue for such a rare opportunity race. Read More »

Nationwide Series Breakdown: 23rd Annual F.W. Webb 200

Nationwide Series Breakdown: 23rd Annual F.W. Webb 200

*In A Nutshell:* Was it Saturday afternoon or Sunday? It could have been either after Sprint Cup regulars put on a dominating show that saw Brad Keselowski emerge victorious for the second time in 2012. Keselowski easily took the pole with Kasey Kahne beside him, and both led early. And even if Keselowski hadn’t made his race winning pass, the victory still would almost certainly have gone to Cup regular Kevin Harvick. In fact, with the exception of yellow flag laps, Nationwide regulars did not lead during the race. Nationwide regulars did comprise the rest of the top 5, with Austin Dillon, Sam Hornish, Jr., and Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. filling those spots. Dillon, the top finishing NNS regular, took home a $100,000 bonus via the Dash for Cash program, which rewards series regulars in certain races. Read More »

NASCAR Nationwide Series 1st Practice Is Complete

Cole Whitt powered the No. 88 JR Motorsports entry to the top of the charts in the first NASCAR Nationwide Series’ first practice session on Friday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. The top 10 in the session included: 1.Cole Whitt 2. Kevin Harvick 3. Brad Keselowski 4. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. 5. Elliott Sadler 6. Austin Dillon 7. Kasey Kahne 8. Sam Hornish, Jr. 9. Kyle Busch 10. Ryan Truex Final practice runs Friday from 1:40-3:00 PM Eastern time. Read More »

Nationwide Series Breakdown: Subway Jalapeno 250

Nationwide Series Breakdown: Subway Jalapeno 250

Friday night's Nationwide race at Daytona seemed to have the best of both worlds for restrictor plate fans. Yes, the outcome was ultimately decided by tandem drafting. But in the process, there was more than enough pack racing to whet fans' appetites, turning the event into a wild competition of record-setting proportions. Read More »

Eric McClure Seeks Return to Normalcy After Trying Start to 2012

Eric McClure Seeks Return to Normalcy After Trying Start to 2012

Sitting down to do my first interview with Eric McClure in nearly a year, there was no avoiding an elephant in the room; namely, the harrowing wreck that McClure endured at Talladega the end of April, one that sidelined the Virginia-native until just a few weekends ago at Road America. “I thought this was it” said McClure when asked if he had time to even think before his Camry nearly knocked down the interior retaining wall on Talladega’s backstretch, hitting headfirst at 185 mph. Asked whether his long-time family background in racing was of any benefit in dealing with arguably the scariest crash the Nationwide Series has seen in the COT era, the answer was blunt: “You think you’re prepared for something like that and you’re not. No one is. Anyone that says they are is lying.” Read More »

Nationwide Series Breakdown: Feed the Children 300

Nationwide Series Breakdown: Feed the Children 300

James Buescher laid waste to the Truck Series field Thursday night, leading 119 laps in a dominating effort. Well, Austin Dillon took that dominance and made it look tame, lapping Buescher twice and leading a Nationwide Series record 192 of 200 laps to score his first career Nationwide Series victory. There was not a single car in the entire field that was capable of passing the No. 3, which started on the pole, under green flag conditions. Kurt Busch, Kevin Harvick, Michael Annett and Justin Allgaier rounded out the top 5. Read More »

Nationwide Series Breakdown: Sargento 200

Nationwide Series Breakdown: Sargento 200

In what was arguably the tamest outing the Nationwide Series has seen in its short history at Road America, a Truck Series regular that laid waste to the field. After winning the pole in only his third Nationwide Series start, Nelson Piquet Jr. found himself battling all day with some of the best road racers in the business… and driving away from them. Leading 19 of the 50 circuits run, Piquet scored his first career NASCAR victory and became the first Brazilian to win a Nationwide Series race. Michael McDowell, Ron Fellows, Max Papis, and Sam Hornish Jr. rounded out the top 5. Read More »

Road Racing the Lottery for Stock Car Racing’s Development Ladder

Road Racing the Lottery for Stock Car Racing’s Development Ladder

Though Daytona isn’t for another few weeks, one of the biggest wildcard races of the season is about to unfold for the Nationwide Series this weekend, and for the ARCA Racing Series ranks a week later. Road course racing is returning to big-time stock car competition, with the Nationwide field visiting Road America this Saturday and the ARCA boys New Jersey Motorsports Park the following Sunday. Read More »

Nationwide Series Breakdown: Alliance Truck Parts 250

Nationwide Series Breakdown: Alliance Truck Parts 250

Lap after lap of stalking proved to be of no avail for James Buescher, who despite a late move into turn 1 on the final lap, was unable to steal the win Saturday from Joey Logano. Logano scored his fifth win of the Nationwide Series season after holding off charges on a number of late race restarts, leading the final 24 circuits. Buescher, Kurt Busch, Cole Whitt, and polesitter Austin Dillon rounded out the top 5. The tire issues that popped up during Saturday’s ARCA race were not noticeably present with NASCAR’s Goodyears on Saturday, as the repaved MIS surface proved to have little impact on the on-track action seen. Read More »