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Friday, April 29, 2011

Starting Lineup For Sprint Cup Series Richmond Race

Juan Pablo Montoya has won the pole for the Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond. Montoya had the fastest lap in final practice as well. He put down a lap of 128.639 mph and 20.989 seconds. Brian Keselowski failed to make the race on time.

Here is the unofficial lineup for Saturday's race:

1- Juan Montoya
2- Regan Smith
3- Clint Bowyer
4- Kasey Kahne
5- Mark Martin
6- Jeff Gordon
7- Brad Keselowski
8- Carl Edwards
9- Joey Logano
10- Paul Menard
11- Denny Hamlin
12- Kevin Harvick
13- Ryan Newman
14- Bobby Labonte
15- Casey Mears
16- David Stremme
17- Jamie McMurray
18- David Reutimann
19- A.J. Allmendinger
20- Kyle Busch
21- Martin Truex Jr.
22- Michael McDowell
23- Greg Biffle
24- Dale Earnhardt Jr.
25- Jeff Burton
26- Joe Nemechek
27- David Ragan
28- Travis Kvapil
29- Dave Blaney
30- Jimmie Johnson
31- Tony Stewart
32- Mike Skinner
33- Matt Kenseth
34- Landon Cassill
35- Marcos Ambrose
36- Kurt Busch
37- Brian Vickers
38- Ken Schrader
39- David Gilliland
40- J.J. Yeley
41- Tony Raines
42- Andy Lally*
43- Robby Gordon
44- Brian Keselowski*

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Nationwide Series Results From Nashville

Carl Edwards dominated the Nationiwde race from Nashville Superspeedway, pulling away from Kyle Busch at the end of the race. Kyle Busch stayed close to the 60 of Edwards, however did not have the speed to pull off a pass and get away. The top four drivers consisted of Sprint Cup drivers, further sparking the discussion of whether Cup drivers should be involved in the Nationwide Series. Here are the unofficial results from Nashville:

1. Carl Edwards
2. Kyle Busch
3. Brad Keselowski
4. Joey Logano
5. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
6. Trevor Bayne
7. Austin Dillon
8. Reed Sorenson
9. Josh Wise
10. Aric Almirola
11. Justin Allgaier
12. Kenny Wallace
13. Elliott Sadler
14. David Reutimann
15. Jason Leffler
16. Ryan Truex
17. Steve Wallace
18. Mike Wallace
19. Michael Annett
20. David Stremme
21. Scott Wimmer
22. Brian Scott
23. Jeremy Clements
24. Kevin Conway
25. Blake Koch
26. Danny O'Quinn Jr.
27. J.R. Fitzpatrick
28. Morgan Shepherd
29. Mikey Kile
30. Derrike Cope
31. Mike Bliss
32. Eric McClure
33. Timmy Hill
34. Robert Richardson Jr.
35. Tim Schendel
36. Tim Andrews
37. Dennis Setzer
38. Mike Harmon
39. Matthew Carter
40. Carl Long
41. Willie Allen
42. Jeff Green
43. Johnny Chapman

Unofficial Starting Lineup For Nashville Nationwide Race

1. Joey Logano
2. Trevor Bayne
3. Austin Dillon
4. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
5. David Reutimann
6. Kyle Busch
7. Carl Edwards
8. Elliott Sadler
9. Brad Keselowski
10. Brian Scott
11. Kenny Wallace
12. Josh Wise
13. Reed Sorenson
14. Justin Allgaier
15. Steve Wallace
16. Aric Almirola
17. Michael Annett
18. Mike Bliss
19. Jason Leffler
20. Ryan Truex*
21. J.R. Fitzpatrick
22. Mikey Kile
23. Danny O'Quinn Jr.
24. Kevin Conway
25. Shelby Howard
26. Mike Wallace
27. Timmy Hill
28. Jeremy Clements
29. Scott Wimmer
30. Blake Koch
31. Tim Andrews
32. Matthew Carter
33. Jeff Green
34. Eric McClure
35. Tim Schendel
36. Derrike Cope
37. Morgan Shepherd
38. Johnny Chapman
39. Carl Long
40. Dennis Setzer
41. Willie Allen
42. Robert Richardson Jr.
43. Mike Harmon

Friday, April 22, 2011

Final Panel Put Into Place For The World's Largest HD Video Board

(Image From Charlotte Motor Speedway's Facebook page)

Charlotte Motor Speedway finished a very big project recently. According to the speedway's Facebook page, the final panel for the largest HD video board has been put into place.

The picture, above, most likely does not do the size of this board justice. Here are some facts about the video board:

* There are more than nine million LED lamps

* The board is 200 feet wide and 80 feet tall

* The actual screen is 16,000 square feet

* The video board weighs 165,000 pounds

More facts about this board can be found at the Speedway's website, along with other information about the record breaking project.

The board will be functional by the NASCAR races next month.

Nashville On Track Schedule

It may be Easter weekend, and there may be no Sprint Cup Series race, however that doesn't stop the guys and girls of the Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series. The two will be in Nashville Tennessee today and tomorrow for some racing action before heading back home to their families for the holiday.

Here is a rundown of the events taking place at Nashville, along with the TV schedule.


Friday, April 22, 2011:

11:00 am - Truck Series Practice (Not on TV)

12:30 pm - Truck Series Practice (Not on TV)

3:30 pm - Nationwide Series Practice (Not on TV, but can be followed by NASCAR.com's live leaderboard)

5:00 pm - Truck Series qualifying (SPEED, trucks will hit the track at approximately 5:10)

6:30 pm - Nationwide Series final practice (ESPN2)

8:00 Pm - Truck Series race (SPEED)

Saturday, April 23, 2011:
Noon - Nationwide Qualifying (ESPN)

3:00 pm - Nationwide Race (ESPN)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Is it time for change in the Nationwide Series?

A few weeks ago, I was quick to defend the current NASCAR Nationwide Series points situation. With Sprint Cup competitors winning in NASCAR's minor league level, many were skeptical of Sprint Cup Series drivers running in the Nationwide Series.

Many said that the Sprint Cup Series drivers were taking the spotlight away from the Nationwide regulars - the drivers who were chasing the championship. So far, a Nationwide regular has not won this season.

The other side of the argument says that Sprint Cup Series drivers are needed to sell tickets and boost ratings, not to mention the attraction of major sponsors. The Cup drivers also help the Nationwide regulars learn more efficiently - after all they would be racing the competitors of NASCAR's top level.

As the season progresses, there is more reason for concern that a Nationwide regular will not win a single race in the season, but yet will win the championship. Personally, I do not believe this will be the case, however, since thinking more into this, I believe there is still a need for some concern.

NASCAR will not be able to satisfy everyone with this points rule, however, they can attempt to by compromising the two issues.

My idea is to allow Sprint Cup drivers to race in the series, but on a limited schedule. If NASCAR were to limit the amount of races one Sprint Cup Series driver can enter, perhaps to a number around ten, fans would be able to enjoy their favorite drivers racing at the more popular races - such as the restrictor plate races and others popular venues.

This would create an opening for championship contenders for many races - after all, the Cup drivers don't like certain tracks and therefore would not chose them.

This rule - in my opinion - would be perfect for the series. NASCAR's top stars could contend for wins and attract fans and sponsors, Nationwide drivers can win races and prove themselves, and NASCAR Nation will be happy.....right?

Well, at least it seems good in theory.

Monday, April 18, 2011

New Form Of Plate Racing Makes Teamwork A Must

The close finish at Talladega has produced multiple highlights on TV, the Internet, and newspapers. There is much talk over the way the finish went down, how Jimmie Johnson took the lead from being so far back a few laps earlier, and even if the pass was legal.

Taking yet another look at the finish of the race is even more interesting. Notice that all the cars in the photo finish have their teammate with them - pushing them from behind.

Jimmie Johnson of course had Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon had Mark Martin, Clint Bowyer had Kevin Harvick, and making their way into the picture, but just a little too late, was Carl Edwards getting pushed by Greg Biffle.

All those pairings were teammates - and all of them finished in the top eight.

With the new two car drafting affect taking over how drivers race at the restrictor plate tracks of Daytona and Talladega, teammates are necessary in order to win the race.

Take a look at Jimmie Johnson, the winner of the Aaron's 499. He had Dale Earnhardt Jr. push him across the line in the closing feet of the race, however, they were not just hooked up at the end. The two drivers were paired together at the start of the race, by turn one, and kept working together on the same radio with the same spotter for the entire race. They had the plan since before they hit the racetrack, and therefore committed to one another the entire race, never leaving the other behind for any reason - even if the two drivers did not line up anywhere near each other on the restarts.

This commitment to have one of them win the race led the teams to a great finish for Earnhardt and a win for Johnson.

With the competition as close as ever at restrictor plate races, the best way to gain an edge is by working with someone who has the same equipment as you and the same desire to get a team car to victory lane. If nothing else changes as far as the restrictor plate rule package is concerned, when the Daytona July race comes around, you can expect everyone paired up with a teammate of theirs.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Starting Lineup For Aaron's 499

Hendrick Motorsports continues to show the strength of their race cars and motors. Today, all four Hendrick drivers qualified near the front - the top four to be exact. Jeff Gordon took the pole with a speed of 178.248 mph followed by Johnson, Martin, and Earnhardt Jr.

The overall speeds were down from what the usual qualifying speeds are at Talladega, a result from a smaller restrictor plate in order to slow the cars down.

Sam Hornish Jr. qualified for Robby Gordon, but was disqualified due to failing post qualifying inspection. The car will start in the rear. Mike Skinner, Tony Raines, and Michael McDowell failed to qualify on time.

Here is the full unofficial lineup for the Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega.

1.Jeff Gordon
2.Jimmie Johnson
3.Mark Martin
4.Dale Earnhardt Jr.
5.Paul Menard
6.Landon Cassill
7.David Ragan
8.Kurt Busch
9.Brian Vickers
10.Clint Bowyer
11.Trevor Bayne
12.Michael Waltrip
13.Juan Pablo Montoya
14.David Reutimann
15.Bobby Labonte
16.AJ Allmendinger
17.Greg Biffle
18.Regan Smith
19.Brad Keselowski
20.Carl Edwards
21.Jamie McMurray
22.Joe Nemechek
23.Ryan Newman
24.Marcos Ambrose
25.Matt Kenseth
26.Martin Truex Jr.
27.Jeff Burton
28.Travis Kvapil
29.Denny Hamlin
30.Tony Stewart
31.Kasey Kahne
32.Kevin Conway
33.Steve Park
34.Kyle Busch
35.Dave Blaney
36.Joey Logano
37.Andy Lally
38.Kevin Harvick
39.David Gilliland
40.Casey Mears
41.Terry Labonte
42.Bill Elliott
43.Sam Hornish Jr.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Trevor Bayne In Hospital From Insect Bite

Trevor Bayne has been hospitalized at North Carolina hospital to receive treatment for a serious insect bite that he received early last weekend.

Bayne, the 2011 Daytona 500 winner, checked himself into the hospital Sunday morning, after there was major swelling on his elbow following the race at Texas Motor Speedway.

He did check in with the infield care center at times during the race weekend, however the bite was not as severe at the time. He checked into the hospital at 2 a.m. Sunday.

Bayne tweeted the following:

@Tbayne21: Not sure if its a spider bite or a tick bite.. But either way I'm in a hospital bed with a needle in my arm! #nobueno

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Kyle Busch's Nationwide race ruined by a blown tire.....of another car

Ronald Martinez, Getty Images

It seemed as if it may once again be Kyle Busch's race in the Nationwide Series at Texas Motor Speedway on Friday. He was slowly improving his position up to 2nd behind Carl Edwards, and the car began getting better and better. It was shaping up to be a great race and a great, exciting finish between the two Sprint Cup superstars.

This would soon come to an end for Kyle Busch.

Just past halfway, while riding about a car length behind the leader, Edwards, Tim Schendel, who was on the bottom of the track, blew a right front tire and went straight into the wall. He missed Edwards, collected Kyle Busch, and Tim Schendel and Busch went into the outside wall. Kyle's race was over.

“It didn’t happen that fast, but there was no time to react,” Busch said. “You can’t just stomp on the brakes and turn left, you’re already maxed out with your tires.

It’s real unfortunate – these guys did a great job working all weekend to get the car capable of running with Carl there. “They unloaded a lot better than we did and we just worked really hard getting to that point where we could run with those guys.

“There was an opportunity for us to win,” Busch said. “I’m not going to say we were the winning car. Carl is definitely the winning car.

“We were making ground on him to where we could get there and at least run with him. We probably could have put on a really good show.”

He did say that there was most likey little the lap car could have done differently.

“I don’t know how long his tire was going down, but if it was going down for the whole front straightaway, he should have gotten to the slowest speed and ran the apron."

Friday, April 8, 2011

Don't expect Dale Jr. to take out anybody for the win

After getting passed late in the race last weekend in Martinsville to lose the race to Kevin Harvick, many have been critical of Dale Eanhardt Jr. for not taking out Kevin Harvick to win the race. Being NASCAR's most popular driver and the son of racing legend Dale Earnhardt have put extra attention on how Dale Jr. raced for the win last weekend. Although Earnhardt did bump Kyle Busch out of the way to take the lead initially, some say Earnhardt raced Harvick the wrong way, saying that his father wouldn't have let that race get way.

When asked about the closing laps of the race the following week at Texas, Dale had no regrets.

"I didn't want to take him out under any circumstances," he said. "I don't take out drivers or wreck people on purpose. I wanted to race him hard."

Although there was some contact between the two drivers, Earnhardt called it a "pillow fight," which is what he expects from drivers if he was in Harvick's position in the future.

"If it's near the end of the race, I expect to run hard and be aggressive, and I expect the guys to run me hard and be aggressive, and I think that's kind of what went down this past weekend."

With the next three races coming up on the circuit being good tracks for NASCAR's most popular driver, we may see Dale Earnhardt Jr. race for the win again very soon. According to him, don't expect him to take anybody out on purpose.

Texas Motor Speedway Lineup: Ragan Gets The Pole

David Ragan, the last driver of the top 35 drivers to qualify, took the pole position for Saturday night's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway. Ragan had a speed of 189.820 mph and 28.448 seconds. Carl Edwards qualified second, two tenths behind his pole sitting teammate. There was only one driver to fail to qualify - Travis Kvapil. The race coverage will begin at 7 PM ET on FOX tomorrow. Here is the complete unofficial lineup for the 500 mile race.

1)David Ragan
2)Carl Edwards
3)Clint Bowyer
4)Matt Kenseth
5)Regan Smith
6)Jimmie Johnson
7)Marcos Ambrose
8)Joey Logano
9)Greg Biffle
10)Kurt Busch
11)Kyle Busch
12)Jeff Burton
13)Kasey Kahne
14)Juan Pablo Montoya
15)AJ Allmendinger
16)Ryan Newman
17)Jamie McMurray
18)Trevor Bayne
19)Paul Menard
20)Michael McDowell
21)Mark Martin
22)Casey Mears
23)Denny Hamlin
24)Landon Cassill
25)David Reutimann
26)Tony Stewart
27)Brad Keselowski
28)Dale Earnhardt Jr.
29)Kevin Harvick
30)Brian Vickers
31)Martin Truex Jr.
32)Jeff Gordon
33)David Starr
34)Bobby Labonte
35)JJ Yeley
36)Mike Skinner
37)Joe Nemechek
38)Dave Blaney
39)Andy Lally
40)Robby Gordon
41)David Gilliland
42)Ken Schrader
43)Tony Raines

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Dale Jr. Almost Ends Winless Streak

After almost 100 races since Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s last Sprint Cup Series points race win, Earnhardt took the lead from Kyle Busch after a bump and run only to get passed by Kevin Harvick with just a few laps remaining.

For a while, it seemed Jr's winless streak was about to be over, and that he would finally be able to take home a grandfather clock - the trophy for winning at Matinsville. It seemed, even to Earnhardt, that he would take the checkered flag, saying he thought "I was meant to win that damn race."

This was not the case, as he barely even held on to finish second place after a loose car in the final laps. Although disappointed, NASCAR's most popular driver is also "thrilled."

"I'm really thrilled," Earnhardt Jr said after his chance at winning. "I know it don't look like it. But I've got such a hell of an opportunity. This is such a great group to be around, and I'm having fun it. I'm racing cars. It's all I've ever wanted to do.

"I want to run like this. I want to finish like this and run a little bit better than this on every weekend, and we are right on the outside of that – and it's frustrating to be that close. It was frustrating to be leading the race with inside 10 laps to go and be passed."

Dale Earnhardt Jr, heads into the next few races with a good chance at winning yet again. The next three race tracks have been a place of victory for Earnhardt Jr. in the past.

Results From Martinsville: Harvick Gets By Earnhardt Late In Race

Kevin Harvick has won his second consecutive race of the 2011 season. After passing Dale Earnhardt Jr. with a few laps to go, Harvick was able to take the checkered flag, followed by Earnhardt Jr., who held off Kyle Busch by a nose. There were a record 31 lead changes among 12 drivers and attendance was up to 60,000 from 68,000.

1.Kevin Harvick
2.Dale Earnhardt Jr.
3.Kyle Busch
4.Juan Pablo Montoya
5.Jeff Gordon
6.Matt Kenseth
7.Jamie McMurray
8.David Ragan
9.Clint Bowyer
10.Mark Martin
11.Jimmie Johnson
12.Denny Hamlin
13.Joey Logano
14.A.J. Allmendinger
15.David Reutimann
16.Kurt Busch
17.Brian Vickers
18.Carl Edwards
19.Brad Keselowski
20.Ryan Newman
21.Greg Biffle
22.Ken Schrader
23.Robby Gordon
24.Jeff Burton
25.Tony Raines
26.Landon Cassill
27.Bobby Labonte
28.Hermie Sadler
29.Marcos Ambrose
30.Dave Blaney
31.Regan Smith
32.Michael McDowell
33.David Gilliland
34.Tony Stewart
35.Trevor Bayne
36.Casey Mears
37.Travis Kvapil
38.Tony Menard
39.Kasey Kahne
40.Martin Truex Jr.
41.J.J. Yeley
42.Mike Skinner
43.Joe Nemechek

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Jamie McMurray Wins Goody's Fast Relief 500 Pole

Jamie McMurray has won the pole for Sunday's race at Martinsville with a speed of 96.509 mph a lap time of 19.62 seconds. Track Position is key at this short track and may even be more important due to the tire issues. The excess "marbles" at the top of the track has made the racing groove very narrow making it more difficult to pass. Here is the unofficial lineup for Sunday's race.

1)Jamie McMurray
2)Ryan Newman
3)Kasey Kahne
4)Joey Logano
5)Denny Hamlin
6)AJ Allmendinger
7)Bobby Labonte
8)David Reutimann
9)Kevin Harvick
10)Regan SMith
11)Kyle Busch
12)Mark Martin
13)Brian Vickers
14)David Ragan
15)Clint Bowyer
16)Paul Menard
17)Jimmie Johnson
18)Martin Truex Jr.
19)Marcos Ambrose
20)Kurt Busch
21)Jeff Gordon
22)Brad Keselowski
23)Carl Edwards
24)Matt Kenseth
25)Trevor Bayne
26)Dale Earnhardt Jr.
27)Juan Pablo Montoya
28)Tony Stewart
29)Dave Blaney
30)Casey Mears
31)Travis Kvapil
32)Jeff Burton
33)Greg Biffle
34)Robby Gordon
35)Michael McDowell
36)David Gilliland
37)Joe Nemechek
38)Landon Cassil
39)Mike Skinner
40)Ken Schrader
41)Tony Raines
42)JJ Yeley
43)Hermie Sadler

Kimi Raikkonen To Kyle Busch Motorsports

After much speculation, it is official that Formula One Champion Kimi Raikkonen will be coming to NASCAR. It was announced that he will run a limited schedule for Kyle Busch Motorsports in the Camping World Truck Series.

Team owner Kyle Busch is honored to bring the champion to his team.

"Adding one of the most talented drivers in the world is a continuation of building a team of proven winners and champions at KBM," Busch said. "I look forward to assisting in Kimi's transition to NASCAR as both an owner and teammate."

Raikkonen is also looking forward to working with Kyle Busch.

"Kyle is one of the best in NASCAR, and being able to draw on his knowledge will be a valuable asset as I make my transition to a new form of racing," Raikkonen said in a statement. "He has put together an experienced team that builds fast race trucks. I look forward to being a part of a team that has proven to be a winner on and off the race track."

Although there are no concrete plans for any Nationwide or Sprint Cup series races in the near future, it appears Raikkonen is committed to starting slow and working his way up the ladder.