Monday , October 20 2014
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Five Points To Ponder

Ten Points To Ponder … During The Easter Break

Ten Points To Ponder … During The Easter Break

*1) Takes One To Know One!* - Megastar comedian and TV personality Jeff Foxworthy talked NASCAR in a CNN interview this week, attempting to persuade host Glenn Beck that instead of taking in a race at Daytona, he would be better served going to Talladega, Alabama for his stock car racing experience. In fact, Foxworthy claimed that five minutes in the Talladega infield on race day gives him about two hours of standup material. How would he know? The folksy Foxworthy was actually the Grand Marshal of last April's Aaron's 499 at the superspeedway. The Georgia native described the infield scene for that race as "wild," and anointed the NASCAR enthusiasts that habitat that area of the track as "Redneck Royalty." Hard to argue that label with a guy that came to fame largely due to his "You might be a Redneck if…" routine. *2) Born To Race* - Wisconsin native and stock car legend Dick Trickle is sitting out this race season, as he needs some time to recuperate from both hip replacement surgery last November and recurring heart problems. Read More »

Ten Points To Ponder … After Bristol

Ten Points To Ponder … After Bristol

1) *Can't Get Much Simpler…* - Last Friday's rainout of qualifying for the Food City 500 required NASCAR to fall back to its rulebook for determining the lineup. It's one of the more complex plans ever created, so let's see if we can work through it together... OK, let's begin. The first rule's easy; the Top 35 teams in owner points for 2007 are placed on the starting grid 1-35. Then, out of the remaining eight positions, past winners of the race will be selected first, putting Kurt Busch (Sam Hornish, Jr. was given his 2007 points) in the 36th starting spot for his previous Bristol dominance. Next in the pecking order are past champions of the series; thus, Dale Jarrett, in his final points race before retiring, started 37th. Read More »

Ten Points To Ponder … After Atlanta

Ten Points To Ponder … After Atlanta

*1. Where Have They Been?* - It appears that some race fans, missing from the television viewing audience the last few years, have decided to give NASCAR Sprint Cup racing another shot. Ratings are up for the four race broadcasts (Bud Shootout, Daytona Qualifying, Daytona 500, Las Vegas 400) televised this season that did not suffer a rescheduling due to weather (California). Overall, the Fox network has seen a 3% increase in its race ratings, with last week's Las Vegas broadcast increasing by a whopping 13% in comparison to last season's race. Looks like the building excitement to March Madness doesn't have anything on NASCAR this year ... at least, not yet. *2. An Oldie But Goodie…* Red Bull Racing Team GM Jay Frye announced late last week that 50-year-old former NASCAR Cup regular and past Craftsman Truck Series Champion *Mike Skinner* would be taking over the driving duties of the Red Bull No. 84 that had been driven by *A.J. Allmendinger.* Read More »

Ten Points To Ponder … After the Auto Club 500

Ten Points To Ponder … After the Auto Club 500

*1. You're Just Repeating Yourself!* - Ahead of the running of the Auto Club 500 at California Speedway, International Speedway Corp. (ISC) announced that they had sold the naming rights to the track located in Fontana, CA. to the Auto Club Speedway of Southern California in a 10-year deal for an undisclosed amount rumored to be between $50-$75 million. With respect to the change, the Sunday/Monday race was billed as the Auto Club 500 at the Auto Club Speedway of Southern California. Not quite as "catchy" as say…oh I don't know…the Southern 500 at Darlington! *2..I'm Tellin' Ya…I'm Innocent* - Robby Gordon was tagged with a 100-point penalty and the No. 7 Robby Gordon Motorsports Crew Chief, Frank Kerr was fined $100,00 and suspended for six races because the team showed up at Daytona with an unapproved nose piece on their hastily converted Ford to Dodge; Jim Beam sponsored Camry. All parties seem to be in agreement that the unapproved part gave Gordon no competitive advantage, and Gordon is appealing the decision. Read More »

Ten Points To Ponder … After the Daytona 500

Ten Points To Ponder … After the Daytona 500

*1. Well … Isn't That Just Super? -* The Daytona 500 is often referred to as NASCAR's equivalent of the NFL's Super Bowl. Well, the Patriots - Giants game, held two weeks ago, was an exciting and well-played contest in its own right; and, with a Cinderella finish to boot. I just thought it was appropriate to mention here, because while I like the New York Giants, Ryan Newman and the Penske Dodges were just as big of an underdog, overcoming the odds for a surprise victory in Sprint Cup. It's clear that in terms of entertainment value, both the NFL and NASCAR appear to have delivered in the past month or so. *2. Was It Just A Hunch? -* Those NASCAR PR guys are slick; did you catch the NASCAR promo shortly after the opening laps as FOX went to break with Jeff Gordon exclaiming that, "Hey, I like the way this is looking." And that happened not long after he had taken the lead, either! How did those guys know? Read More »

Ten Points To Ponder…After the Bud Shootout

Ten Points To Ponder…After the Bud Shootout

*1. Bad Karma For Robby.* Robby Gordon seems to have been bit with some bad karma as of late. Last month, he lost approximately $4.5 million when the Dakar Rally was canceled due to the threat of terrorism in Mauritania, an unforeseen bill which prompted him to admit that the loss hit the Robby Gordon Motorsports "slush fund" pretty hard. Now, he may be looking at a fine from NASCAR for a situation not of his making. It seems that Gillett Evernham Motorsports, RGM's new partner, sent an unapproved nose for his recently converted Ford-to-Dodge race car, one that officials wasted no time in confiscating from the No. 7 Jim Beam Dodge. A couple of pondering points here, though; will GEM reimburse Robby Gordon for any fine that comes from the illegal part ... and how cool would it be to have a $4.5 million slush fund? *2. Boys Will Be Boys.* Habitual "bad boys" Kurt Busch and Tony Stewart were once again at each other's throats after wrecking in Friday's practice leading up to the Bud Shootout, possibly facing fines and penalties to be dished out early next week. But really... didn't we all enjoy it? The intrigue now is that they've forced the sanctioning body to define what Chairman Brian France meant in last month's back-to-basics proclamation, saying, in effect, that it was important to allow drivers to be themselves if they hoped to win back some of the longtime fans who have become increasingly disgruntled in recent years. To fine, or not to fine? Read More »

Ten Points to Ponder … After Texas

Ten Points to Ponder … After Texas

*1. Your Year* - How many times did Rusty Wallace say at the end of today's race, "When it's your year, it's your year" in reference to Jimmie Johnson? The irony is that up until a few weeks ago, that phrase had been used almost exclusively to describe Jeff Gordon's 2007 season. The No. 48 team has certainly been strong in the Chase, winning three straight races now and taking a 30-point lead heading to Phoenix. But let's not forget that under the old points system (irrelevant, but still) Gordon would have a 400+ point lead over Johnson with two races to go. Maybe it's a little premature to put the crown on Johnson just yet... *2. Aardvark Alarm* - If you missed Saturday's "NASCAR Performance" on SpeedTV with Bootie Barker, Chad Knaus, and Larry McReynolds, you missed Bootie's hilarious recap of the Atlanta race... Read More »

Ten Points to Ponder … After Fontana

*1. Lowe's High* - For weeks now I've been wondering why everyone was depicting the Chase as a duel between Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart. "Wait!" - I shouted, what about Jimmie Johnson? Heading into Fontana, Johnson was tied with Gordon for bonus points, 10 ahead of Stewart when the Chase starts, and tonight's win moves him ahead of both Gordon and Stewart with 50 bonus points. Johnson's team typically slumps in the summer but they turn it on when it counts. Don't hand that Nextel Cup trophy to anyone else just yet. It's also worth noting that Johnson and Matt Kenseth are now the only drivers to make the Chase all four seasons since its inception in 2004. *2. Enough Already!* - Look, I like Dale Junior as much as the next person, but the tunnel-visioned focus of Sunday's race broadcast on Junior's quest to make the Chase was ridiculous. Last week, Earnhardt himself complained about the media's obsession with his points situation, stating, "That's all y'all talk about. I shouldn't tell you that you dictate my mood." Read More »