Race Weekend Central

The Yellow Stripe: Emotional Win for Denny Hamlin Overshadows Clouds of NASCAR’s Perfect Storm

There are some days that are just meant to be. Those oh-so-rare days when you are the best, you know you’re the best, and more importantly, so does everyone else. The sort of days when everything falls into place, right at the exact time you need it. Monday was just such a day for Denny …

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The Yellow Stripe: The Remarkable Rise of Michael Waltrip Racing

With the honorable exception of David Reutimann, the driver formerly known as the Franchise, it was another very positive weekend for Michael Waltrip Racing at Infineon Raceway this past Sunday; yet more evidence to support the remarkable rise from the ashes of the jet-fuel “first race” debacle at Daytona in 2007. Taking top billing was …

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The Yellow Stripe: Crucial Weeks Approach for Chase Hopeful Juan Pablo Montoya

Lost in the pack behind the failed fuel gambles of Jimmie Johnson and Greg Biffle and a series-equaling best third win for NASCAR’s very own Peter Pan, Mark Martin, was the sixth-place finish for the No. 42 car of Juan Pablo Montoya this week at Michigan. But for a man who’d never been better than …

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The Yellow Stripe: Will Denny Hamlin’s Supposed “Bad Luck” Derail a Promising Career?

“I think luck is the sense to recognize an opportunity and the ability to take advantage of it. The man who can smile at his breaks and grab his chances gets on.” – Samuel Goldwyn There is a tendency in sport, from the highest echelon to the lowest, most grassroots level, to accentuate the short …

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The Yellow Stripe: Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day – a Solid Start to Life After Tony Eury for Dale Jr. & Co.

When Neil Armstrong became the first man to set foot on the Moon on July 21, 1969 he uttered the now famous phrase: “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Now, it’s a quote that can easily be applied to Dale Earnhardt Jr. following Sunday’s Autism Speaks 400 at the Monster …

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The Yellow Stripe: So Near & Yet So Far – The Story of RCR’s Struggles in 2009

The trouble with great expectations is that when you fall even just a little short, the disappointment is exponentially greater. In the case of Richard Childress Racing, falling short is very much the story of its season so far. And nowhere was that more evident than at Lowe’s Motor Speedway this past weekend where the …

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Grading the 2009 NASCAR Sprint Cup Pack: Part 1

NASCAR’s longest and most grueling race, the Coca-Cola 600, represents a significant milestone in the 2009 season. It’s not quite the halfway point to the Chase (that comes the following week after Dover), but once the checkers fly late Sunday evening, we’re exactly one-third of the way through the 36-race schedule. With that in mind, …

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The Yellow Stripe: This Bud’s Not for Kasey – After Killer Start, the Only Way for Kahne to Go is Up

As the curtain closed on another Southern 500 Saturday night, the Lady In Black shined brightly on three of the four cars at Richard Petty Motorsports. Elliott Sadler, AJ Allmendinger and Reed Sorenson persevered to hard-fought top-20 finishes, battling back from miserable starts as they looked to turn their seasons around. As for their teammate Kasey …

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The Yellow Stripe: Race for NASCAR’s Chase Far From Over for Those on the Outside Looking In

“There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies and statistics.” So reportedly said Benjamin Disraeli, prime minister of Great Britain from 1874 to 1880. It’s a well-known quote that is attributed to other writers as well, including Mark Twain; but regardless of its exact point of origin, it’s a citation the drivers placed outside …

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The Yellow Stripe: Why I Don’t Love Plate Racing Anymore & Up Next, the Best Month of the Season

Even by Talladega’s “biggest, baddest” standards, that was quite the race weekend in Alabama, wasn’t it, dear readers? Matt Kenseth’s crash in the Nationwide race was violent and scary looking, but it pales into almost insignificance when compared to the carnage the airborne No. 99 Ford Fusion caused on the final lap – not to …

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