Race Weekend Central

10 Points to Ponder… After the 2008 Sylvania 300 at Loudon

1. Not Keepin’ Up With the Times – This past week, Kyle Petty took on NASCAR for not being able to control the number of teams an owner operates, as well as keeping a level playing field for smaller organizations. Petty cited the recent alliance of Stewart-Haas Racing with Hendrick Motorsports as an example, nicknaming …

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Who’s Going to Win It All? Our 2008 NASCAR Chase Predictions

The fifth edition of NASCAR’s Chase has three clear favorites: Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards and Jimmie Johnson. But in a system where 12 drivers are separated by just 80 points, anyone could come out on top in a playoff race that seldom goes according to plan. With so many drivers and so much at stake, how …

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Thompson in Turn 5: Tony Stewart Rude, Crude & 1 of the Best

I’m not sure who I rank as the best all-around driver I have ever witnessed do battle on a racetrack; but of the three at the top of my list, only one is still active… Tony Stewart. (Mario Andretti and AJ Foyt round out my own personal all-time top three). That’s not a particularly controversial …

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10 Points to Ponder… After the 2008 Chevy Rock & Roll 400 at Richmond

1. How Low? – “When times are tough, there are certain things that are lower on the priority list than others,” said Dodge Motorsports senior manager Mike Delahanty in announcing that the company would not support any Craftsman Truck Series teams beginning next year. Actually, the only truck team that the manufacturer still funds was …

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Thompson in Turn 5: Richmond a “Must-See” Event

NASCAR’s long schedule has always become tedious for race fans who, as the season wears on, invariably suffer from stock car “burnout” to one degree or another. Expecting fans to sit through all 36 scheduled points races and the two exhibition races in a 52-week year is asking way too much and generally won’t happen. …

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10 Points to Ponder… After the 2008 Pepsi 500 at Fontana

1. Thanks for the Memories – Felix Sabates, co-owner of Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates, never one to mince words, took a potshot at sponsor of the No. 42 Texaco Dodge driven by Juan Pablo Montoya. Texaco, after 20 years of sponsoring a NASCAR Cup team, has announced that they have made a business …

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Thompson in Turn 5: Edwards & Busch… Like Mayfield & Earnhardt

The bump-and-run maneuver – as demonstrated by Carl Edwards Saturday night in the Sharpie 500 at Bristol to gain the win – is without a doubt the sorriest, most low-rent passing tactic in the book. The maneuver requires very little skill, but lots of brashness coupled with minimal regard for sportsmanship. However, for only the …

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10 Points to Ponder… After the 2008 Bristol Night Race

1. A Little Communication – New team owner for 2009 Tony Stewart has had a change of heart on acquiring the No. 4 for next year’s teammate Ryan Newman; instead, Stewart’s fellow Indiana driver will race the No. 39. Though NASCAR agreed to transfer the number, used by Morgan-McClure Motorsports for 25 years, the sanctioning …

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Thompson in Turn 5: Jeff Gordon & Others Still Figuring Out How to Approach the Chase

Immediately following NASCAR’s announcement in 2003 of the new championship points format – the 10-race Chase – I found myself fully on board with the plan. I supported the decision by the new management regime headed by Brian France because, in my estimation, it was a smart business move to insure there were no more …

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10 Points to Ponder… After the 2008 3M Performance 400 at Michigan

1. Give Backs – After five years on the sideline, the Southern 500 is back! Well, sort of. Track officials have announced that next year’s Mother’s Day weekend race will be renamed the Southern 500 – replacing the Dodge Avenger 500. The track lost the traditional Southern 500 date to the Fontana, Calif. racetrack in …

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Thompson in Turn 5: No “Mind Games” Intended Towards Kyle Busch – Just the Truth

Wholly based on genuine observations and candid comments made by Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson leading up to Kyle Busch’s convincing win last Sunday at the Watkins Glen International road course, some in the news media and apparently Busch himself believe that his former Hendrick Motorsports teammates are engaging in some form of psychological warfare …

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10 Points to Ponder… After the 2008 Centurion Boats at the Glen

1. Artifacts – Dale Earnhardt Inc.’s. driver of the No. 1 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, Martin Truex Jr., has agreed to contract terms with his current employer that will keep him with the organization and his team at least through 2009. Last week, rumors had Truex Jr. agreeing in principal to resigning with DEI, leading …

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