Race Weekend Central

Edwards Wins Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen

Saturday’s Zippo 200 marked the first Nationwide Series start of the year for 2007 Champion Carl Edwards. Edwards had run the previous seven seasons full-time while also running full-time in Sprint Cup. However, at the end of last year, Edwards decided that he needed to focus more on Sprint Cup and sacrificed his Nationwide schedule. …

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Potts’ Shots: Paying The Price In NASCAR, On The Track And Off

I suppose, Billy that it’s much the same as everybody’s take on the situation. It’s sad. The guy made a serious mistake, and now he’s paying for it. Also, like everyone else, I have some questions myself. He says a “friend” gave him a pill, supposedly Adderall, and said it was an energy supplement, like you would take prior to a workout.

What does AJ think this is, high school? Even though it was more than 50 years ago, I can remember somebody handing me a pill and saying, “Try this, you’ll love it.” I was lucky. My father was a salesman for a pharmaceutical wholesaler, and I had been exposed to a lot of knowledge of what could happen. That pill went into the next trash can down the hall.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Power Rankings: Top 15 After Pocono

To say the race at Pocono was crazy would be an understatement. From scoring errors, to torrential downpours, and crazy on-track action (at Pocono!) no fan could legitimately turn off the race because it was “boring”. Of course, we do want to express condolences and well wishes to the victims of the lightning strikes and their families.

Back on the racetrack, Jeff Gordon finally looked like, well, Jeff Gordon and was able to pull into Victory Lane since a witch doctor cast a spell on him. Or at least that’s what we think happened.

Severe Weather Warnings: What Should Be The NASCAR Fan’s Safety Net

Was the lightning strike at Pocono that claimed Brian Zimmerman’s life and sent nine others to area hospitals a fluke? From personal experience, I don’t think so.

It was 2005. My much adored and abused travel trailer was parked inside the exit of Turn 3 at Pocono. And the clouds were building behind the empty grandstand. The black, purple-green kind that taught me I should hide under the stairs when I was a child. I looked around as the wind started to pick up and the scent of rain blew across the track. We scurried around our camping spot throwing as much stuff inside as possible, taking up the awning and then it hit.

Couch Potato Tuesday: Special Guests and Weather Mark Telecasts

Hello, race fans. Welcome back to Couch Potato Tuesday, where race telecast critiques are the name of the game. This past weekend, the Sprint Cup and Camping World Truck Series were each in action at Pocono Raceway. Meanwhile, the Nationwide Series was in action with ESPN’s “B-Team” at Iowa Speedway.

*U.S. Cellular 250*

On Saturday night, the Nationwide Series held their second race of the season at Iowa Speedway in front of a sellout crowd. Since ESPN was busy covering the Sprint Cup race in Pocono in addition to this event, there were some changes. First off, there was a rare two-man booth for this race. Marty Reid was joined only by Ricky Craven. There was no Pit Studio (it was back in Pocono), so Shannon Spake hosted Countdown from pit road. It was a throwback telecast in a way with only five on-air personalities.

Pocono Recap For NL

Johnson’s Bobble Brings Gordon Unlikely Pocono Victory Jimmie Johnson, for much of the day at Pocono looked primed for a second straight victory. Jeff Gordon? He looked happy to simply finish fifth in a year where bad luck has ruined too many strong performances. But during a wacky ending at the Tricky Triangle, the field …

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Mistake and Failure Prone, Hendrick Motorsports Still Conquers Pocono

When one thinks of a juggernaut in any form of sport, be it Alabama in college football, Michigan State in college basketball, or Hendrick Motorsports in NASCAR racing, the last thoughts to cross one’s mind are often about failures and mistakes. That begs a question: when a race team suffers through failures, makes countless mistakes, and still emerges as the one entity to make a cohesive statement at the Pocono Raceway this weekend, how should they be described?

Hendrick Motorsports was already the headliner entering this weekend, with fan-favorite Dale Earnhardt Jr. enjoying his first points lead in nearly a decade. In addition, the team was on-message.

Dakoda Armstrong: Tackling the Tricky Triangle and USAC Excitement

We went to Chicagoland and we were supposed to have a new truck, but we didn’t quite get it done. We took the truck we’ve been running a lot; we got there and ended up running 16th in both practice sessions. We just stayed in the same area all weekend. I thought we’d be a little better than where we finished, but we just had a little trouble on the restarts getting going. It would take the truck a lap to come back. It was one of the hardest places I’ve ever raced. To finish 16th I was three and four wide on every restart trying to get positions. We just needed to be a little better there and I didn’t quite get it; but I think we’ll work on it. Our teammate Matt Crafton was really good but Johnny Sauter in the No. 13 wasn’t very good. We’re trying to work off of each other and some of us get it while some us don’t, but I think we’ll get it the next time.

NASCAR Weekly Fan Q & A: What Happens To ‘Dinger Now?

As I write this introductory sentence, AJ Allmendinger is less than 24 hours removed from the conclusion to his career with Penske Racing. So let’s not waste any time getting to what all of you, including *James Stenton* from _Manassas, VA_ are asking this Thursday:

*So what does AJ do now? Who’s going to sign him for 2013, if anyone? And will we ever know what he tested positive for?*

James, it’s a little early to place AJ with somebody else. But what I can tell you is on the NASCAR side, based on the Road To Recovery program’s timeline the earliest we’ll see him eligible for competition is February’s 2013 Daytona 500. In between will be a rough summer and fall, filled with the sport’s step-by-step rehabilitation and personal transition as the driver also goes through a divorce.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Power Rankings: Top 15 After Indianapolis

It was a Hendrick Motorsports kind of day last weekend in Indianapolis. Jimmie Johnson stole the show to win his fourth Brickyard 400, putting him in elite company at America’s most famous speedway. Meanwhile, looking at the “big picture” teammate Dale Earnhardt, Jr. took the series point lead for the first time since the Fall of 2004. Is the apocalypse, supposedly predicted by the Mayans this year finally upon us? Or are Steve Letarte and Earnhardt just really, really good together — better than anyone could have ever imagined once they were joined at the hip by Rick Hendrick?

The Thunder Gun: NASCAR’s Glue That Binds A Family Together

James Hurd puts his hands on almost every impact gun used on pit road during NASCAR National Touring races. Whether it’s Cup, Nationwide or Truck, almost every tire changer on pit lane uses an Ingersoll-Rand Thunder Gun. The familiar high-pitched whine that fans hear during pit stops, while the lug nuts are flying off and being driven on the five studs on each corner of the car comes from the yellow and black impact gun that has been produced by IR since the ’60s. Hurd travels the circuit and tunes up the Thunder Guns for everyone, assuring their effectiveness on race day. While it varies from every week to three or four times a season, each and every time that a tire changer wants to have his gun looked over or rebuilt Hurd brings it to the IR hauler and he disassembles, inspects and tunes up each gun.