Race Weekend Central

Nuts For Nationwide: Larson Who? Alex Bowman Early Surprise In Rookie Battle

By far, the most visible rookie of the year candidate coming into the 2013 Nationwide season was Kyle Larson. Touted as a future star the moment he was introduced to the masses, Larson had quickly progressed up the ranks in auto racing, emerging victorious in his debut K&N Pro East Series season in 2012 as its champion and scoring an average finish of 11.2 in four late-season Camping World Truck Series races, nearly winning one of them. Sure, there was his fairly controversial finish at the Whelen All-American UNOH Battle at the Beach, during which he turned C.E. Falk on the final lap to win the first race of the series.

Formula 1 Fridays: Building The Best

Over here in the UK we celebrated the day of the country’s patron saint, St George, on Monday. As per tradition, I toasted the dragonslayer’s legacy by stuffing myself with good old English fare and having rather too many real ales to wash it down with.

Categories F1

Four Burning Questions: Richmond – Can Tony Stewart Right The Ship?

“The perfect racetrack.” That’s the phrase that many in the NASCAR world utter when describing Richmond International Raceway, the site of Round 9 of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. This popular, 0.75-mile oval will be inheriting another load of racing drama this weekend, but for once, it’s not “Boys, Have At It.” Instead, the main focus on everyone’s minds will be “Boys, What’s The Call Now?” revolving closely around the onslaught of penalties NASCAR has dumped onto some of the biggest names in the sport.

NASCAR Mailbox: Penalties, Penalties, Penalties And Your Reaction To Them

Depending on what part of the country you are in, winter has hung on incredibly long despite the calendar’s insistence that it is, indeed, spring. Last weekend at Kansas Speedway was once of those instances, as freezing temperatures in the morning along with the famous, blustery Kansas wind made walking around the racetrack nearly unbearable. Heavy jackets were aplenty and the hunched over, arms wrapped around your own waste stance was apparent at the coldest points of the day.

Unfortunately, the alternative which was the June race the track held a couple years ago, is frying. Though I hate the cold weather and would rather deal with 100-degree temperatures than sub-zero conditions, spectators aren’t going to have to go the various health centers inside the track to be treated for 30-degree temperatures. This is as opposed to the handful of individuals who were dealing with heat exhaustion when the first Kansas race was held in June.

NASCAR Fantasy Insider: Struggling Stars Look To Get Back On Track At Richmond

If you look just strictly at the numbers and past history of how some of NASCAR’s top drivers have performed at Richmond, you would have a hard time knowing who to pick at Saturday night’s Sprint Cup race at the one-mile oval because so many of them have done so well there in the past.

However, if you look at the current points standings and the recent struggles of some of those same drivers, you may well be left scratching your head again when trying to decide who or who not to pick. Some of the familiar names such as Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick, Jeff Gordon, Ryan Newman and even Dale Earnhardt, Jr. have had their share of success at Richmond. That group has combined for 11 wins there. But when looking at the points standings, the picture is not so optimistic.

Truckin’ Thursdays: Miguel Paludo on Rockingham, Boston And The NHRA

We made a ton of progress at Rockingham last weekend. It’s a track that I struggled a lot at last year. We started outside the top 20 and worked our way into the top 10, before dropping back to where we finished. I was just ready to be done at Rockingham last year, but now I started liking it. When you run good at a race track, you want to go back. I felt like we did a great job our second time there. We ran in the top 10, and the guys did awesome pit stops. We’re putting everything together that we need to. Especially at Rockingham, it’s easy to spin your tires on the restart. Overall, it was a great effort for us and we gained in the championship battle, and it means a lot at a special place like that.

We had a really fast truck at Kansas right off of the truck, and we ran so well in both practices. I almost thought we would get the pole, until James [Buescher] beat us at the last second. We started on the front row with both of my teammates right there with me, and I led some laps there. That truck was so fast but someone got loose inside me and the damage when I hit the wall ended the day for us.

Tech Talk: Tony Gibson Talks Danica Development And Richmond

_Eight races into the season and Tony Gibson has already learned quite a bit about both his race cars and his driver, Danica Patrick. Gibson is not only dealing with a different chassis but also one of the most well-known rookies to hit the series in the last ten years. It’s an extra pound of pressure on an already stressful job; there is no doubt that being a crew chief in a championship-winning organization comes with sky high expectations. Add in a rookie driver who is a lightning rod for criticism, the current struggles of Stewart-Haas Racing and there are a lot of other places that most people would rather be. Gibson, though, doesn’t shy away from the spotlight and is embracing the challenge unlike anyone else._

_The longtime SHR employee sat down with Frontstretch to discuss some of the current mechanical storylines on the Sprint Cup circuit. Between the tires that don’t wear out, brakes that do and the struggles facing Danica and Company this season, there was plenty to get to. He also speaks about his feelings for the new race car at this point in the season._

Johnny Sauter Penalized For Fuel Cell Infraction At Kansas

Thorsport Racing, along with former Truck Series point leader Johnny Sauter are reeling this Wednesday after a major penalty involving their No. 98 Toyota. On Wednesday, NASCAR announced the team was fined $10,000, crew chief Joel Shear has been suspended for four races and 25 owner points were taken away as a result of a …

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Did You Notice? … “Cheating” Equals Credibility Crisis, Who NASCAR’s Chasing And Dodging Brands

*Did You Notice?…* One of the biggest statements from Kansas has been swept under the radar… until now? Richard Petty, when interviewed matter-of-factly Friday suggested that someone had to snitch on Penske Racing in order for them to be facing the 500-foot pool of water they’re drowning in now. It was more than a coincidence, said the King for NASCAR to pick apart their cars, pre-race inspection all of a sudden and then throw the hammer down in terms of suspending everyone but the waterboy in that organization for six weeks.

“They passed two or three inspections and hadn’t been caught,” he said of the Texas incident, going on to say that based on past experience, it’s clear as day someone “must” have alerted authorities about suspect rear end housings.