Race Weekend Central

The Underdog House: NASCAR’s Best-Kept Secret

2017 Texas I Cup Cole Whitt Matt Dibenedetto Racing Logan Whitton Nkp

(Photo: Logan Whitton/NKP)

Think Small It feels like NASCAR’s small teams get a bad rap right from the start from some fans and even media.  Too often, they’re lumped into a “backmarkers” category, often mocked for their poor performance compared to rivals.  To hear some people talk, you’d think they went out every week and ran in the 20’s …

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The Underdog House: No Margin For Error With NASCAR’s Small Teams

2017 Las Vegas Cup Ryan Blaney Timmy Hill Racing John Harrelson Nkp

(Photo: John Harrelson/NKP)

No Margin For Error Last week, we looked at the importance of improvement for small teams.  For those that realistically just can’t compete with their powerhouse rivals on a weekly basis, it’s a better measure than finishes alone. It’s also an important step for those teams a step ahead of the game, ones in position to one …

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The Underdog House: NASCAR’s Intermediate Track Blues

2017 Atlanta Cup Matt Dibenedetto Car

Photo: Nigel Kinrade/NKP

Think Small It can be said that the real NASCAR season starts at Atlanta. The Intermediate track season kicked off last weekend and the results were fairly predictable of the small teams this week.  In general at a 1.5 to 2-mile track, these teams struggle to keep up.  You might see a couple of teams …

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The Underdog House: Small Teams Thriving and Surviving in Daytona

2017 Daytona Cup Zach Catanzareti Joey Gase Bk Racing Corey Lajoie

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

Think Small Well, Daytona is in the rearview mirror. Depending on who you ask, that’s either a real bummer or can’t come too soon, depending on how the race went. The thing about plate tracks is that they’re such an opportunity for teams to compete—if they’re lucky and avoid trouble.  They can also become exercises …

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NASCAR 101: Your Cheat Sheet to Cup Series’ Team & Driver Changes

Clint Bowyer 2017 Daytona

(Photo: John Harrelson/NKP)

Good lord, is it really that time of year again? Despite an offseason that frankly felt like a four-week break, it is indeed true: NASCAR racing is back, and even though you just now figured out who Kaulig Racing is and finally learned how to spell half the new Camping World Truck Series drivers’ names, too bad, …

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Go FAS Racing Unsure of Driver Lineup for 2017

Jeffrey Earnhardt

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

There will be a new face in the No. 32 car in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in 2017. Jeffrey Earnhardt will not be back in the Ford ride next year, according to team owner Archie St. Hilaire. The grandson of seven-time Cup Series champion Dale Earnhardt made 17 starts with the team but ran …

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The Underdog House: Putting A Wrap On 2016

2016 Charlotte All Star Showdown Cup Michael Mcdowell Casey Mears Racing Nigel Kinrade Nkp

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade/NKP)

Think Small It’s hard to believe the 2016 season is over—it seems like just yesterday that it began, full of promise and hope.  For some of the teams on this page, it’s been, by all counts, a good season—one of accomplishment and improvement.  For others it’s been a struggle, financial or performance, often both as …

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The Underdog House: A Texas Curveball

2016 Nascar Sprint Cup Series, Texas

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade/NKP)

Think Small Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway, with its shift from day to night after an hours-long rain delay, did do one thing well: it showed a clear disparity between the elite teams and those striving to reach that mark one day. The intermediate tracks are plentiful on the Cup schedule …

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Thinkin’ Out Loud: Carl Edwards Saves Best for Last to Win at Texas

2016 Nascar Sprint Cup Series, Texas

(Photo: Nigel Kinrade / NKP)

Who’s in the headline – While Carl Edwards will garner most of the headlines for the weekend, it was Mother Nature who took most of the attention. The race was delayed by five-and-a-half hours due to track drying efforts that seemed to make progress at a snail’s pace. Once the race began, the sun had …

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Matt DiBenedetto Out After Wreck, Jeffrey Earnhardt to Sub

2016 Kansas I Cup Matt Dibenedetto Brett Moist Nkp

(Photo: Brett Moist / NKP)

On Saturday afternoon, Matt DiBenedetto had a hard crash during the XFINITY Series’ O’Reilly Auto Parts Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway.  The No. 14 Toyota went hard into the turn 3 wall on lap 134 unassisted.  He dropped his window net shortly after coming to a stop, signaling to safety crews that he was alright. “I’m …

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The Underdog House: Are Small-Time NASCAR Drivers Damaged Goods?

Cup Martinsville Martinsville Speedway Aj Allmendinger

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

Think Small It’s an easy mistake to make: falling into the trap of thinking most of the drivers racing for NASCAR’s smaller teams are damaged goods.  Sadly, it’s one that even team owners often fall into.  How often have young, talented drivers taken rides in this group hoping for some exposure only to be overlooked?  …

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Beyond the Cockpit: Jeffrey Earnhardt Explains Why Late Grandfather is His ‘Superhero’

2016 Cup Talladega Jeffrey Earnhardt Zach Catanzareti

(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

Jeffrey Earnhardt is full of character – and it isn’t just because his grandfather, Dale Earnhardt, was called The Intimidator. Indeed, deep beneath the largest shadow in the competitive world of NASCAR stands a guy who wants to earn it the hard way. Despite having a name that will turn nearly any head below the …

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