Tuesday , September 30 2014
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Tom Bowles

NASCAR’s Biggest Nightmare: Predictable

NASCAR’s Biggest Nightmare: Predictable

It was supposed to be a history-making moment. NASCAR’s first ever “Chase elimination” race, the lynchpin of its new format was supposed to make Dover a “Game 7” atmosphere, knocking potential title contenders out of the prizefight early. After Loudon, where top drivers got knocked around like pinballs, the bar was set for aggression, strategy, even panic as so many hovered around the “cutline,” whittling an expanded postseason field from 16 to a far more manageable 12. Dover’s Monster Mile, ... Read More »

Did You Notice? … A Monstrous Moment, Hendrick’s So-So Start And Quick Hits

Did You Notice? … A Monstrous Moment, Hendrick’s So-So Start And Quick Hits

Did You Notice? … The Monster Mile is entering a crucial weekend? Lately, races at the one-mile oval have been duds; Goodyear’s tire compound, combined with a conservative mindset have minimized the yellow flags and maximized the boredom at the one-mile oval. Dover’s track used to be one of the trickiest on tour, a matter of survival as the outside wall could come up and bite at any time. Finally, this spring we started to see a turnaround, with the ... Read More »

Throwing A One-Two Punch

Throwing A One-Two Punch

In a season marked by changes – new Chase format, new rules, and over a half-dozen rookies – NASCAR’s Sprint Cup title contenders have remained crystal clear. From Memorial Day Weekend on, Penske Racing and Hendrick Motorsports have remained a step ahead of the pack, inching by a faster-but-flawed Kevin Harvick and a lack of horsepower at Joe Gibbs Racing. They went six for six on making the new, expanded 16-driver postseason field; in the last sixteen races, prior to ... Read More »

Did You Notice? … NASCAR’s Risky Play With Tony Stewart

Did You Notice? … NASCAR’s Risky Play With Tony Stewart

Did You Notice? … A difference between two leagues? The NFL, after days of pressure, one sponsor (Radisson) pulling out and a second (Budweiser) giving a veiled threat finally pushed the Minnesota Vikings to keep star running back Adrian Peterson off the field. Peterson, accused of child abuse won’t face trial until early next year but has seen the facts of his case go public, along with a second accusation of beating a child that’s surfaced from 2013. While the ... Read More »

Petty’s Rough Ride

Petty’s Rough Ride

Aric Almirola is driving like a man with nothing to lose. King Richard Petty, in a year filled with sadness sees light at the end of the tunnel, in the best position to win with his cars since handing the keys to investors several years back. Crew chief Trent Owens, in his first year on the Sprint Cup level, is quietly becoming a mechanical mastermind. The pieces, if put together right were there for David to rise up and challenge ... Read More »

Did You Notice? … NASCAR Racing Against Its Roots

Did You Notice? … NASCAR Racing Against Its Roots

Did You Notice? … The team/manufacturer breakdown inside the Chase? Right now, it sets up as the following… Chevrolet (8) Hendrick Motorsports – 4 Stewart-Haas Racing – 2 Richard Childress Racing – 1 JTG-Daugherty Racing – 1 Ford (5) Penske Racing – 2 Roush Fenway Racing – 2 Richard Petty Motorsports – 1 Toyota (3) Joe Gibbs Racing – 3 Clearly, three teams stand out above all others when creating this breakdown. Toyota, in a down year with only two ... Read More »

No Contact Zone

No Contact Zone

Let me set the stage for you. It’s NASCAR’s final regular season race, the eve of its much-hyped Chase format and for several drivers, the mission is simple: “Win or you miss the playoffs, along with the millions in endorsements and exposure that comes with it.” The pressure to perform, in theory should be immense, like an NFL team with a “do or die” playoff bid on the line. Among those needing a Herculean effort to make the field included ... Read More »

Did You Notice?… Sprint Cup’s Largest Pre-Chase Disappointments

Did You Notice?… Sprint Cup’s Largest Pre-Chase Disappointments

Did You Notice?… There’s a number of drivers where Saturday will be their last chance to make the Chase. However, with only two spots available, just four drivers (Ryan Newman, Greg Biffle, Clint Bowyer, and Kyle Larson) have a shot to make it into the playoff field through points. The rest must work their way into Victory Lane, a longshot for anyone who’s spent the season well outside the top 15 in points. I figured I’d stop to take a ... Read More »

Kasey At The Bat

Kasey At The Bat

Kasey Kahne has built his Sprint Cup career on intermediates. While Richmond sits just a week away, the site of his first career win, it’s also the only track where he has won less than a mile in length. That made Sunday night’s mission clear, the second Kahne worked his way into contention in Atlanta: win or go home. Take control, in the backyard of young Chase Elliott’s hometown no less – a driver who one day may be replacing Kahne in ... Read More »

Did You Notice… An “Old School” Question, Rules Mistake And Earnhardt’s Effort

Did You Notice… An “Old School” Question, Rules Mistake And Earnhardt’s Effort

Did You Notice?… It’s now time for old school fans to step up? NASCAR’s 2015 schedule, as expected had few major changes aside from Darlington’s move to Labor Day Weekend. To accommodate, Atlanta jumps to the second race of the season while Bristol takes the Darlington date in mid-April. The new adjustments create a third off week, put on the weekend of August 30th (two races before the end of the regular season) put in place to increase the drama ... Read More »