Race Weekend Central

Sprint Cup Rookie Report: Michael McDowell Has Magnificent Return With Career-Best Finish

Rookies in the Starting Lineup: (Qualifying lineup set by points due to inclement weather) Regan Smith (29th), Sam Hornish Jr. (36th), Michael McDowell (38th), Patrick Carpentier (39th) Unofficial Finishing Positions: McDowell (20th), Smith (23rd), Carpentier (25th), Hornish (38th) Rookie of the Race: McDowell. After a three-race layoff, McDowell returned to the seat of the No. 00 …

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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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Bubble Breakdown: Michael McDowell Into Top 35; Dave Blaney Into Bud Shootout

Forget the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship – the drivers in our Bubble Breakdown are chasing a few goals of their own. With 10 races to go in the 2008 NASCAR season, the battle to be locked in the field for 2009 has become a dogfight for five spots between seven teams separated by …

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Sprint Cup Rookie Report: Patrick Carpentier Keeps His Name in the Running for a 2009 Ride

Rookies in the Starting Lineup: Patrick Carpentier (fifth), Aric Almirola (10th), Regan Smith (25th), Sam Hornish Jr. (32nd), Marcos Ambrose (40th) Unofficial Finishing Positions: Carpentier (18th), Almirola (30th), Hornish (31st), Ambrose (32nd), Smith (36th) Rookie of the Race: Carpentier. After missing the race last week in Bristol, Carpentier traveled to the West Coast as a man …

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Sprint Cup Rookie Report: Patrick Carpentier Strong but Sam Hornish Jr. Steals the Show at Michigan

Rookies in the Starting Lineup: Patrick Carpentier (sixth), Regan Smith (eighth), Sam Hornish Jr. (23rd), Marcos Ambrose (29th), Brad Coleman (43rd) Unofficial Finishing Positions: Hornish (22nd), Smith (29th), Carpentier (30th), Coleman (38th), Ambrose (43rd) Rookie of the Race: Hornish. On lap 2 of Sunday’s event, it certainly didn’t look like Hornish would be taking home rookie …

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Mirror Driving: Road Ringers Lose, Casey Mears on the Move & Young Guns Get the Boot

Welcome to Mirror Driving. Every week, your favorite columnists sit down and give their opinion about the latest NASCAR news and rumors. Love us or hate us, make a comment below and tell us how you feel about what we’ve said! This Week’s Participants: Tony Lumbis (Mondays/Rookie Report) Mike Neff (Wednesdays/Power Rankings & Full Throttle, Thursdays/Picks ‘N’ …

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Did You Notice? Junior Stressed Out? Said Rained Out? & Why Did McDowell Pout?

Did You Notice? That Dale Earnhardt Jr. looks a little haggard lately? In virtually every single interview I’ve seen him do over the past two months, Junior’s answers are so slow and meticulously constructed it feels like he’s processing the question in slow motion. I feel like it’s either one of two things – it’s either …

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Running Their Mouth: 2008 Centurion Boats at the Glen

This week, here’s a sneak peek at what a select few were thinking following the Centurion Boats at the Glen at Watkins Glen International.

Matt McLaughlin’s Thinkin’ Out Loud: 2008 Watkins Glen Race Recap

The Key Moment: Dale Earnhardt Jr. pitted under caution on lap 66, handing the lead to Kyle Busch – who would never come close to relinquishing it at Watkins Glen. In a Nutshell: Busch once again spanks the field handily, offering fans a chance for a nice late-summer nap. Dramatic Moment: Unfortunately, the only high drama …

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Sprint Cup Rookie Report: Marcos Ambrose Gains Positions & Respect at the Glen

Rookies in the Starting Lineup: (Due to rain, the starting lineup was determined by car owner points) Aric Almirola (15th), Ron Fellows (32nd), Sam Hornish Jr. (34th), Michael McDowell (36th), PJ Jones (38th), Patrick Carpentier (39th), Max Papis (42nd), Marcos Ambrose (43rd) Unofficial Finishing Positions: Ambrose (third), Fellows (13th), Carpentier (20th), McDowell (25th), Hornish (32nd), Almirola …

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Bubble Breakdown: It’s All Good for AJ Allmendinger After Securing Slot in Top 35

After rain washed out Friday’s qualifying, this weekend’s road race at Watkins Glen was set by owner points – a decision that turned out to be a double-edged sword for our faithful set of bubble dwellers. On the plus side, all 43 full-time teams qualified without the risk of being knocked off by road-course ringers …

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Bubble Breakdown: AJ Allmendinger Creeps Closer to 1st-Ever Trip Inside Top 35

Set up in the mountains of eastern Pennsylvania is NASCAR’s tricky triangle known as Pocono Raceway. Like Indy, it’s a track that can be a nightmare to set up the car, as it has three straightaways all of different lengths, as well as three completely different types of turns. To make matters worse for teams …

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