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Tech Talk: Tony Gibson Dishes on Preparing for Gen-6 at Daytona

Tech Talk: Tony Gibson Dishes on Preparing for Gen-6 at Daytona

_Tony Gibson has been around the sport of stock car racing for a long time. He's seen three or four generations of the race cars in the Cup Series and now, he prepares to climb aboard the pit box for one of the most well-known female drivers in the history of the sport, Danica Patrick. As he takes on that new role, he also has to take on the task of learning how the latest iteration of the Cup car will react to the subtle nuances that crew chiefs throw at it in an attempt to make it faster. Gibson took a break from all that complexity, plus preparing his team to head to Daytona to speak with Mike Neff about the challenges that teams are facing as they head to the World Center of Speed in this season's first installment of Tech Talk._ Mike Neff: *You went down to Daytona last month for the big test with the new car. How much did you learn and when you unloaded down there, were you in a 500 setup or were you testing specific things with the car?* Tony Gibson: We were pretty much in race mode. I know it sounds strange to say single-car runs, but we weren't in any kind of qualifying mode. Read More »

Tech Talk: Making a Car Stick in the Florida Sun with Bob Osborne

Tech Talk: Making a Car Stick in the Florida Sun with Bob Osborne

_Bob Osborne was Carl Edwards crew chief for most of the first seven years of his career, with the exception of a brief stint with Jamie McMurray. He ran the No. 99 for the first 19 races this season before stepping aside due to health concerns. He is still part of the management of Roush Fenway racing and has his finger on the pulse of all of the teams under the Roush banner._ _Osborne shared his opinions on setting up for a variable banking track, an oval without a bend in the front straight, the character of Homestead after baking in the Florida sun for a few years and the strategy every team uses when they come to the race track on a race weekend. He also tells FS what he'd like to see out of the tires that are brought to the track every weekend._ Read More »

Tech Talk: Darian Grubb and Putting the Power Down at Phoenix

Tech Talk: Darian Grubb and Putting the Power Down at Phoenix

_The 2012 Chase has taken a turn for the worse for Denny Hamlin. After a mechanical issue cost him a quality finish at Martinsville, the hopes of the No. 11 team for a title this year went out the window. Can they recover for a season sweep in the desert before the 2012 season dries up? With two races to go on the schedule, it has come down to win or nothing for the Joe Gibbs Racing team. Darian Grubb took some time at Martinsville to talk with Frontstretch about the upcoming race at Phoenix, the 2013 car that they tested at the track before Martinsville, the cars they're putting into the fleet for next season and the changes that the track at Phoenix has presented to the teams._ Read More »

Tech Talk: Saving Gas While Going Fast in the Lone Star State

Tech Talk: Saving Gas While Going Fast in the Lone Star State

_Jason Ratcliff has been turning wrenches for Joey Logano all season. He led Logano to his second career Cup victory along with a fourth-place finish at Daytona in July. Ratcliff has a Nationwide championship under his belt, with Kyle Busch in 2009 and 2012 marks his first full-time season as a Cup crew chief. In our latest Tech Talk, he shared with Frontstretch the advantages of having the driver run Nationwide and Cup, how EFI can and cannot help with fuel saving, the effect of sideskirt adjustments and how racy the track is at Texas._ Read More »

Tech Talk: NASCAR Eyes In The Sky Equals A Full-Time Job

Tech Talk: NASCAR Eyes In The Sky Equals A Full-Time Job

_This week for Tech Talk, we thought we'd take a detour from life under the hood to give you a taste of what life is like up on the roof. Mike Herman, Jr. has been spotting for several years for drivers at local tracks all of the way up to the Sprint Cup Series. Before that, he was a driver and mechanic, winning multiple track championships at Concord Speedway and competing in the Hooters Pro Cup Series back when it was one of the strongest short track divisions in the country. So as NASCAR heads to Martinsville, Virginia this weekend with its Chase for the Championship Frontstretch sat down with Herman to talk a little about the tools of his trade. Find out more insight about the responsibilities of a spotter, what the toughest pit road in the sport is and how much the best spotters in the business spend on their equipment as Herman, Jr. sits down for an extended conversation with our own Mike Neff. Oh, and we talk a little Martinsville inside info, too..._ Read More »

Goodyear Engineer Justin Vanthozen On Picking the Right Tire for Kansas

Goodyear Engineer Justin Vanthozen On Picking the Right Tire for Kansas

_Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company has been making racing tires for as long as there has been racing. In 1914 every competitor in the Indianapolis 500 raced on Goodyear tires. Over the company's long history they have continually advanced tire technology to new heights that some would argue might be too advanced for what their product is supposed to do. Whatever your opinion, the fact of the matter is that Goodyear is the top manufacturer of tires in the United States and they have developed racing tires that are the most durable that we’ve ever seen in our sport._ _Goodyear Engineer Justin Vanthozen sat down with Frontstretch to discuss tires; how they are constructed, the most important characteristics in race tires, the construction compounds (without divulging industry secrets of course) and more. As the series heads into Kansas with their newly repaved surface, tires will most certainly be at the forefront of the conversation, and Vanthozen helped to clarify that picture._ Read More »

Tech Talk: Night Racing in Charlotte with Tony Gibson and the No. 39

Tech Talk: Night Racing in Charlotte with Tony Gibson and the No. 39

_The Cup series heads to Charlotte for the final night race of the season. Teams will be dealing with a more stable racing surface since the entire race will be run after the sun is below the horizon. The teams will also be sleeping in their own beds and racing in front of friends and family that don’t normally get to see them compete live. As the Chase reaches its halfway point, Tony Gibson shares his views on preparing for 500 miles at Charlotte Motor Speedway._ _Gibson touches base on how smart the EFI system is, squashing tires to calculate spring rates and how much better racing would be if the tires wore out more. Check out his opinions in this week’s edition of Tech Talk._ Read More »

Tech Talk: Gil Martin and the No. 29 On Cleaning 2012′s Last Plate (Race)

Tech Talk: Gil Martin and the No. 29 On Cleaning 2012′s Last Plate (Race)

_NASCAR is going to Talladega to run the fourth and final restrictor plate race of the season this weekend. Richard Childress Racing has long been a force on restrictor plate tracks and while their success at Daytona hasn’t been as strong, they have won three of the last five races held in the Cup series at Talladega. With Kevin Harvick the only driver from the RCR stables in the Chase, Gil Martin is tasked with leading the flagship of the organization toward the promised land. He spent some time with Frontstretch before the trip to Northern Alabama this weekend to touch on the things that make for a successful race at the 2.66 mile track between Atlanta and Birmingham._ Read More »

Tech Talk: Trying to Recapture the Magic at Loudon for Tony Stewart

Tech Talk: Trying to Recapture the Magic at Loudon for Tony Stewart

_Tony Stewart started off his championship run last season with back-to-back wins at Chicago and Loudon. While his sixth-place finish on Sunday didn’t replicate his win from 2011, the nine bonus points he carried into the Chase this year have him sitting in basically the same position -- on the cusp of being a contender. The attention now turns to Loudon, where Stewart and his teammate Ryan Newman were dominant in 2011. This Spring, they finished 12th and 10th respectively, but are poised to made another run at the top two spots this coming weekend after a successful test at Milwaukee._ _Frontstretch caught up with Steve Addington after the Milwaukee test to get his take on heading to the Magic Mile, cars in line for the Chase races, working with Hendrick Motorsports and how much they pay attention to the competition when they’re at the race track._ Read More »

Tech Talk with Matt Puccia: Starting Off Biffle’s Chase on the Right Foot

Tech Talk with Matt Puccia: Starting Off Biffle’s Chase on the Right Foot

_After leading the points before Richmond, Matt Puccia and Greg Biffle are now sitting tied for fifth with Clint Bowyer as the green flag waves over the Chase for the Sprint Cup this weekend at Chicago. Puccia took over the reins on top of the No. 16 pit box in July and has since led Biffle to a win, two top 5s, and five top 10s in nine races. Greg Biffle is the only driver in the Chase with the chance to secure a title in all three of the national touring series of NASCAR should he claim the Cup. That task has eluded everyone since the Truck series was started in 1995. If Puccia and Biffle can avoid the up and down nature that Biffle’s luck seems to follow, they just might pull it off_. Read More »