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Holding A Pretty Wheel: Daytona Optimism is What NASCAR Needs

Holding A Pretty Wheel: Daytona Optimism is What NASCAR Needs

NASCAR is in Daytona this week, at a track where the racing is intense and close. One of the attractions of Daytona International Speedway is that we believe anyone can win. The track is the great equalizer because of the restrictor plates that reduce the airflow to the engines of the racecars, reducing horsepower to a point where almost everyone can race with the top teams, if only for a day. Oh, Daytona, you tease. As much as fans love ... Read More »

Happiness Is… Vacation, Luck & Making Friends

Happiness Is… Vacation, Luck & Making Friends

Ahhh.  It’s time for a pause.  One of those moments of reflection or something like that.  People who practice yoga might consider it a time to get centered.  Those who are taking a different path to enlightenment might feel it’s time to grab a beer and change the channel.  Duly noted. One of the things that has confounded Happiness Is in recent weeks are the frequent comments about how the media covering NASCAR is just a shill for the product. ... Read More »

Mirror Driving: Repaving Kentucky, Shopping Center, and Bubba Moving Up?

Mirror Driving: Repaving Kentucky, Shopping Center, and Bubba Moving Up?

Welcome to Mirror Driving. Every week, your favorite columnists sit down and give their opinion about the latest NASCAR news, rumors and controversy. Love us or hate us, make a comment below and tell us how you feel about what we’ve said! This Week’s Participants: Amy Henderson (Mondays / The Big Six & Wednesdays / The Frontstretch Five & Fridays / Holding A Pretty Wheel & Frontstretch Managing Editor) Phil Allaway (Tuesdays / Couch Potato Tuesday & Frontstretch Newsletter Editor) ... Read More »

Menard Crashes in New Hamphire Test

Menard Crashes in New Hamphire Test

This week, Michael Waltrip Racing and Richard Childress Racing spent Tuesday and Wednesday testing at New Hampshire Motor Speedway ahead of July 12th’s Camping World RV Sales 301. For most of the drivers, the test went fine. However, Paul Menard wasn’t so lucky. NASCAR.com is reporting that late in Wednesday’s session on track, Menard spun his No. 27 in Turn 2 and hit the wall on the driver’s side. Menard was uninjured in the crash, but reports from the track ... Read More »

Going By the Numbers: Denny Hamlin, Kasey Kahne Offer Opposite Sides of the Spectrum in June

Going By the Numbers: Denny Hamlin, Kasey Kahne Offer Opposite Sides of the Spectrum in June

With winners vaulting themselves into the Chase and the points system conducive to drivers falling into and out of favor within a handful of races, a few good — or bad — races can make all the difference in the Sprint Cup Series. Just tell that to Denny Hamlin and Kasey Kahne. Each are on opposite sides of the spectrum when it comes to the last few races. Departing Pocono, Kahne was down in the dumps, having finished 42nd and ... Read More »

Tech Talk with Bono Manion: Daytona – Splitters, Tires and Engine Cooling

Tech Talk with Bono Manion: Daytona – Splitters, Tires and Engine Cooling

The No. 7 team of Tommy Baldwin Racing is continuing to show improvement most every week. This past weekend the teamy scored an 18th-place finish at Kentucky Speedway with driver Michael Annett. It was the team’s fourth Top 20 finish of the season and their best non-restrictor plate finish of the season. Crew Chief Kevin ‘Bono’ Manion has been quite candid about the goals of the team this year, and notes to Mike Neff this week in Tech Talk that ... Read More »

Fantasy insider:Daytona Puts Plenty of Unpredictability On the Plate

Fantasy insider:Daytona Puts Plenty of Unpredictability On the Plate

The Sprint Cuppers head to Daytona for the third of four restrictor plate races Saturday night. And the one thing about these races, as you may well know, is that you don’t know with any certainty what is going to happen. Sure there are some guys who have a knack for this kind of racing, going 200 mph with other cars only inches away, lap after lap after lap. There are some who prefer to stay up front and avoid ... Read More »

Did You Notice? Kentucky’s Woes, Surging Rookies, and a Dominant Team Penske

Did You Notice? Kentucky’s Woes, Surging Rookies, and a Dominant Team Penske

Did You Notice? … The lack of passing on Saturday night? Kentucky lived up to its reputation once again this Saturday, and that reputation is not a positive one. The track has, quite frankly, been maligned since it joined the circuit in 2011. The inaugural event was plagued by horrific traffic problems due to a lack of proper infrastructure, and the on-track racing product since then has been just as bad as those traffic problems. Sunday’s race only featured 12 lead ... Read More »

The Frontstretch Five: Things That Would Make Fans Happy at Daytona

The Frontstretch Five: Things That Would Make Fans Happy at Daytona

Welcome to the Frontstretch Five, a brand-new column for 2014! Each week, Amy Henderson takes a look at the racing, the drivers, and the storylines that drive NASCAR and produces a list of five people, places, things, and ideas that define the current state of our sport. In the latest edition, has five things that could make race fans leave Daytona happy. 1. No controversy This one’s important, and will probably be harder to achieve than it should be. But ... Read More »