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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Busch slams Reutimann, Reutimann fires back



Following the conclusion of the Irwin Tools Night Race, Kyle Busch(the race winner...of all three of NASCAR's top series that weekend) made another one of his comments that just so happen to be extremely controversial. This time, it involved David Reutimann.

"Reutimann was fast, and he was good, and I’m not going to say why I beat him because then he’ll fix it, but it has to do with behind the wheel.

He wasn't driving the place right. I’m sorry. If he fixes how to drive this place, he’d be right there with me."


Days after the comment, Reutimann had this to say:

"That’s probably the stupidest comment I’ve ever heard anybody say at any given time.

"Everybody’s cars are identical. Nobody’s cars drive any different. So the guy who wins and does a phenomenal job and the guy who finishes 43rd is just terrible because everybody’s car is identical. They drive exactly the same. (sarcastically)

"I don’t know if [it was] the fact that his Superman cape was flying out the back when I was behind him and I couldn’t see or what the deal was. We got beat fair and square. That’s what it comes down to. We just got outrun. Professor Busch, maybe he can start a driving school at Bristol and the rest of the field can join in and go and [he can] show all of us what we’re doing wrong. I need help.

"It all comes down to the fact that we just don’t like each other very much. It has been a while. We just don’t like each other, and we agree we don’t like each other and we’re both fine with it."


So it looks like there is going to be another chapter to the war of words with drivers. There has been a lot of them lately. Notice, I am not complaining.

So should Kyle have said that? Perhaps not, at least as far as the popularity result may be, but as long as he's winning, and Reutimann's not, he can say whatever he wants.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

NASCAR Hall of Fame nominee spotlight: Jack Ingram


With his inclusion on the list of nominees under consideration for induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2011, Jack Ingram becomes the first driver from what is now known as the Nationwide Series to receive such recognition.

Ingram competed in NASCAR from 1965 until 1991, and during that time he made 275 starts in the NASCAR Busch (now Nationwide) Series. In those 275 starts, he collected 31 wins and claimed the series championship in 1982 (the first year of the Busch Series) and again in 1985. He came close to winning another title in 1986, but his championship run was thwarted by a two-race suspension for rough driving. Unlike the younger champions of today, Ingram's Busch Series titles came after the age of 45.

Prior to his Busch Series accomplishments, Ingram also won three-consecutive championships in the series that preceded the Busch Series -- the Late Model Sportsman Series -- in 1972, 1973 and 1974.

To read more of this bio, visit Nationwide Series News, Notes and Rumors.

Photo of Jack Ingram courtesy of ISC Archives/Getty Images.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Let's have the championship race.......everywhere


The 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule has been released, along with it's "impactful" changes.

If you want to call it that.

Now, I'm not saying that the schedule changes were hurtful or negative to the sport, but I do believe that that changes didn't have the big mix up that was expected by comments from CEO Brian France.

They were good enough though...for now.

But, there's a better way.

Well, it's not exactly a new idea. It has been heard from others as well.

Here it goes - how about changing the Championship race around every year?

There has been an idea of changing the actual Chase races around, but really that can only be done so much because of the limit of tracks as well as different weather situations. However, what if NASCAR were to rotate the final race around every season?

It would be great for both the fans, and the tracks.

As stated earlier, weather would prevent some tracks from gaining this position in the schedule as a result of the different climate zones that the tracks are located in during the season finale month of November, but it would open up many tracks to give them a shot at crowning a champion.

Different sponsors would be able to take the stage, tracks would have another motive to stay in the schedule, knowing they would eventually get a championship race(weather permitting) and sometimes it's just nice to mix it up a little. And with a wide variety of tracks available for this opportunity, it would take years for the same track to be on the schedule again.

Now, will it ever happen?

Chances are, probably not, there are just too much politics involved. But, I don't expect to see Homestead be the final race for too much longer.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Is there such a thing as racing too hard?

Well, we obviously have heard all the stories about Ryan Newman and Joey Logano having a war of words.

After the small dispute between the two, Ryan Newman took off, declining to take an interview with the ESPN pit reporters. Logano however, was willing to speak his mind.

When interviewed, Logano mentioned the fact that Newman races him, as well as others, "too hard." Here is some of what he said about Newman:

"I was asking him why he races everybody so hard all the time. I'm not the only one who says that every week. Of everyone out there, he's the hardest one to pass. I don't understand why." ..... "That's kind of how this (racing) – I've found – that it works: If you give someone respect, you get that back. But he just races everyone hard." ..... "There's a time to race. When you're running 400 miles, 500 miles, why do we gotta race each other so early in the race?"


So now the controversial question is, should Newman really be blamed for racing someone "too hard?"

Isn't that something that both fans and media wanted to see for so long?

Well, the way I look at it, nothing should change. Newman has a right to race anyone as hard as he wants for a position, and so does anyone else. The issue is when someone doesn't race someone smart.

Believe it or not, there is a difference.

So did the two drivers race each other smart? Yes, and nobody should be at fault for Newman spinning out. It is just a product of hard racing. And I think Ryan Newman will realize that when he sees the replays.

As far as I'm concerned, as long as the racing is smart, I say bring it on.


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Joey Logano Vs. Ryan Newman

What Joey Logano said about Ryan Newman:

"I was asking him why he races everybody so hard all the time. I'm not the only one who says that every week. Of everyone out there, he's the hardest one to pass. I don't understand why.

I mean, there's 70 laps to go at a two-mile racetrack. That's a long ways to go. You know, if somebody races me clean, I race them (clean) back. Dale Jr. did it with me earlier in the race, he passed me and he was trying to pass cars in front of me. I helped him pass them, then I got back to him and he let me go.

That's kind of how this (racing) – I've found – that it works: If you give someone respect, you get that back. But he just races everyone hard. He raced his boss, Tony Stewart, hard. I don't understand it, but he's been doing it a lot longer than me. I tried to talk to him about it, but I don't know. I didn't get nowhere.

There's a time to race. When you're running 400 miles, 500 miles, why do we gotta race each other so early in the race? It's just frustrating when you're trying to get by someone at that point. It wasn't a big deal whether we passed each other or not at that point. Most times, if a faster car is behind me, I let them go and hopefully I get that back later.

You know, I've done with (Newman) a lot – if he gets behind me, I'll let him go. But I don't know what to tell you. I wish I could talk to him and figure it out, but I think we both need to calm down first and then talk about it."


Note: Ryan Newman declined to talk to ESPN pit reporters at the time.


Also, you can go to this link to hear first hand what was said between the two.

http://msn.foxsports.com/video/NASCAR?vid=8a3f596f-60e4-430a-8480-58d7588bccdd&from=foxsports/Nascar+Sprint+Cup/headlines
(please note, this link may not be up forever)

Thanks to sbnation.com/nascar and Jeff Gluck for the transcript.

Friday, August 13, 2010

So exactly what is the issue for the 88 team?


Three years. 2 crew chiefs. 1 win. Those would be the expected stats of an average driver.

And that driver just might be average, at least that's what some people think.

As far as my opinion goes, I'm not buying it. At least not yet.

Those stats belong to Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Who would've thought that about three years ago?

I bet you the list of people who did is a very short one.

Now, from everything that has been tossed around, from conspiracy theories, to the driver or crew chief being the blame, I still believe that everyone associated with the 88 team is very good at what they do.

So what is the problem?

Just ask Jamie Mcmurray what his problem was at Roush Fenway Racing.

Chemistry.

NASCAR's most popular driver is with a more successful team than he has dealt with in the past, however that doesn't mean anything if there isn't any good chemistry.

When Dale was driving for DEI, he may not have had the best equipment, but he did win a lot of races, 17 to be exact.

That was a result of good chemistry.

An article by ESPN's David Newton helped me realize it.

Tony Eury Jr. told ESPN something that is missing in the 88 team.

"One thing we had that was strong when we were at DEI, it was brother eat brother. I mean, we were there for one another. We would take a shot for one another."


As far as I'm concerned, Rick Hendrick can put as many technology savvy people as he wants as of a member of Dale's team, but as long as there is no chemistry, no "brother eat brother," there will be no success.

Take when Dale Jr. won in the 3 car recently at Daytona. Jr was with some members of the 88 team, but as far as engineers and the crew chief, it was people Dale had surrounded himself with for years at JR Motorsports.

So what does Rick Hendrick do now? Well, he has two choices: He can keep Lance as the crew chief and try to build chemistry, or he can let the whole Dale Jr. experiment go, and have Dale move on to a better place to have the chemistry, possibly at his own team.

Either way, I believe that Dale Jr. will still have more success in his career, because he is not just average. Although, that success may not be at his current team.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Sprint Cup Preview: Watkins Glen


Road race number two of the season: Watkins Glen.

5 races to go until the Chase.

Only a few drivers with a chance.

Only 12 will make it.

The pressure is on.

Every lap counts.

Every minute, every second.

The Race to the Chase is heating up.

It will be a Heluva good race this weekend.

Here's what and who to watch for.

Will Tony Stewart get to his winning ways at The Glen?
Chances are pretty good for Stewart. He is ranked number one in driver ratings for active drivers at The Glen right now. He has won this race so many times, including last year. After a tough start to the year, Stewart has seemed to really improved. After finishing second last weekend at Pocono, Stewart is on a roll. He is probably the favorite this weekend.

Can Jeff Gordon get his first win of the year?
The longest winless streak of Gordon's career may end this weekend. After getting a new spotter, and signing an extension for crew chief Steve Letarte, the team many have the extra little bit to get them to victory lane. Tony Stewart may be a threat, but so is Jeff Gordon. He is extremely good at road races, and he will be one to watch this weekend, for sure.

Will Mark Martin get into the Chase?
Well, the way I see it, he is the only driver with a realistic shot at getting into the Chase. He is not too far behind 12th place Clint Bowyer, however, Bowyer has been very solid lately(except for races where he has bad luck). Then again, Watkins Glen is a wild card race for sure, but that's what makes these races so much fun.

Will Marcos Ambrose win his first Sprint Cup race?
Marcos has won at The Glen before, but only in the Nationwide series. He came close to winning the Cup event last year, however, he came up short finishing second. He is leaving his team at the end of the season, so it would be a wonderful accomplishment to get a win with them.

Will Juan Pablo Montoya get to victory lane?
With his background, he can be considered a threat for the win at Road courses. He has won at Infineon before, but not at Watkins Glen. Will he get his second win of his NASCAR career?

Predictions:

Winner:

Tony Stewart. The stats just don't lie. Stewart is ranked number one, and he seems like he always has a shot at winning. I see him winning this race, and winning a few more races down the road. The Tony Stewart summer hot streak is coming up.
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