Racing News (10543)
Racing News from around the World
The ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards will make its inaugural appearance at Mobile International Speedway a Rick Crawford Performance Track in, 2012. The ARCA-Mobile 200 will see the national touring series bring its old school door handle to door handle style of hard nose racing for 200 laps on the half-mile, high-banked paved oval on Saturday, March 10, 2012. Since the series’ inception in 1953, the series has raced at over 200 different tracks but this will be the first at Mobile International Speedway.
“The 2012 season is ARCA’s 60th, and Mobile will be the first short track on the schedule following the season opener at Daytona in February,” said ARCA President Ron Drager. “The ARCA Racing Series short track races have proven to be highly competitive and entertaining regardless of the venue. Mobile's style of racing lends itself to an exciting ARCA show.”
From the short tracks like Mobile, to dirt, to road courses to speedways and superspeedways, the ARCA Series has proven itself to be the most versatile driving series in the world. With a diverse schedule and competitive fields the ARCA Series has produced an impressive list of alumni including Alabama gang members, Red Farmer, Davey, Donnie and Bobby Allison and current racing stars, Ryan Newman, Clint Bowyer, David Ragan, Kasey Kahne, Mark Martin, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch and Danica Patrick.
Not only does ARCA have a rich history, today’s drivers are carving out their own places in the ARCA record books. Today’s stars include 9 time ARCA Series Champion, Frank Kimmel, current Championship Point’s leader Ty Dillon, along with Mobile’s Grant Enfinger, who has become a series regular and is currently in the top 5 in the Championship standings along with Chris Buescher and Chad McCumbee.
“Having the ARCA Series come to Mobile International Speedway is a real honor for myself and our track. In the Truck Series we spent many weekends around the country sharing tracks with the ARCA Series and these guys put on a heck of a show. I can’t wait to see them on my home track,” offered Manager/Promoter of Mobile International Speedway Rick Crawford. “The effort to bring the ARCA series to Mobile is a team effort and couldn’t be possible without the Mobile Convention & Visitors Bureau, Mobile Sports Authority and our elected officials.”
The ARCA Series is the latest in first and big time promotions at the Speedway since Crawford took the helm at the beginning of 2011. Along with great racing highlighted by NASCAR stars through the year, fans have helped fuel the Speedways resurgence while enjoying performers like Larry the Cable Guy and Bubba Blackwell’s Daredevil Motorcycle jumps.
Opened in 1964 Mobile International Speedway is Alabama’s fastest half mile and is currently host to the Sunoco Gulf Coast Championship Series and Miller Lite Super Late Model Series along with a regular schedule of Saturday night racing. Lee and Ida Fields purchased the Speedway in 1972 and for almost 40 years the duo produced “The Fastest Fun Around”. In 2011 the Speedway embarked on a new era of track management when Mobile native, multi time Track Champion and all time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts leader Rick Crawford returned to Mobile to become the Manager/Promoter.
Although the ARCA-Mobile 200 marks ARCA’s first appearance at Mobile International Speedway, the ARCA Racing Series history in Alabama reaches back to 1961 when, on November 5, Ernie Derr won a 250-lap race at Birmingham. ARCA race events at the Fairgrounds in Montgomery in 1962, at Huntsville Speedway in 1963 and 1965, followed by a long tenure at Talladega Superspeedway (1969-present) have kept ARCA’s presence in Alabama alive over the decades.
Mobile International Speedway PR
On a day when race teams were supposed to be tweaking their cars for the Virginia is for Racing Lovers 300 at Martinsville Speedway, all they could do was keep an eye on Mother Nature. And as usual, Mother Nature won.
After several attempts at drying the track for a day of testing, a noon downpour finally forced track officials to scrap the day of testing. Teams will return on September 28 for another regularly-scheduled test day for the Virginia is for Racing Lovers 300 Late Model Stock Car race on October 9.
“We had a lot of stuff we were going to try on our car today, but I think it (the weather) set everybody back,” said Lee Pulliam, last year’s Virginia is for Racing Lovers 300 pole winner. The Semora, NC, driver also won the track championship at Motor Mile Speedway this year with a track-record 16 wins.
“I think everybody came in with the game plan of a doing a lot of experimenting today, but now we’ll have to come back next week and do the best we can.
“I feel pretty good about the race car, though. We’ve got a really good package to work off from last year, so I don’t think it (the rainout) will hurt us as much as it will some of the others.”
The rainout will make for a hectic test day next week, according to Frank Deiny Jr., a former winner of the Virginia is for Racing Lovers 300.
“We had a whole list of stuff we wanted to try today. We’re just going to have to have a really solid day when we come back next week,” said Deiny. “We’re going to have to fit two days into one. I think it’s going to be the same for everyone. We’ll all just have to work really hard.”
Open practice is scheduled for Wednesday, September 29, with team sign-in beginning at 7 a.m. All competitor passes purchased for Wednesday’s rainout will be honored on September 28.
Martinsville Speedway PR
There is not a clear answer to who will be the 2011 Joe Gibbs Driven Racing Oil ASA Member Track National Champion with the upcoming final weekend of competition. The one thing that is known, everyone will be paying close attention to what will be happening at Ace Speedway this Friday night.
Barry Beggarly who has been at the top of the standings at Ace Speedway, and swapping the lead back and forth with Chrissy Wallace throughout the season, heads into the Late Model season finale at the ASA Member Track in Altamahaw, NC with a two-point lead over Jason York in the track standings. A 100-lap feature event will decide their track championship.
Beggarly and York each have an average to contend for the National Championship. But in order for either one to have a chance, they must first win the track championship. The National Championship eligibility includes winning the 2011 track championship along with being an ASA Member in good standing.
The question being asked this week is if either one wins the track championship, are they a lock to be the National Champion. The simple answer is no.
Zack Franks, the 16-year-old driver from Newport Motor Speedway in Newport, TN won the Late Model Sportsman feature and track championship this past Saturday night.
Franks won the last three feature events at Newport Motor Speedway and could be a contender for the national title. ASA has received the results but is holding off from calculating the average until Ace Speedway’s finale this Friday night.
“We want to see an apple-to-apple comparison with our top contenders in the East Region,” Dennis Huth, ASA President said. “Also, we have already started the verification process with our ASA Member Tracks and until that process is completed, we have discontinued our weekly standings updates until the verification process is completed and we can announce the National Champion as soon as we can.”
This season, a total of 322 drivers competed in the premiere divisions within the participating ASA Member Tracks for the Joe Gibbs Driven Racing Oil ASA Member Track National Championship. The breakdown is 174 drivers from the East Region and 148 drivers from the West Region.
The National Champion will receive a tryout with Joe Gibbs Racing. This includes a full day test session with one of the JGR teams; a one-on-one meeting with JD Gibbs, President of Joe Gibbs Racing and possibly Joe Gibbs himself; an up-close tour of Joe Gibbs Racing and much more.
The Regional Champion who is not the National Champion will receive a one of a kind Regional Champion jacket courtesy of Speednetdirect.com, the official scorekeeper of the Joe Gibbs Driven Racing Oil ASA Member Track National Championship.
“This is the fourth year for our National Championship and it is coming down to the wire once again,” Huth said. “Last year, we had a tremendous battle with Bryan Wordelman’s margin of victory only being 0.0028, which is basically one or two positions on the track. Barry Beggarly and Jason York will have a great battle this Friday night, but Zack Franks and Chrissy Wallace are waiting to see what will happen. Anything can happen on the final night of racing.”
Fans can look at their favorite driver statistics by visiting SpeedNetDirect.com’s Championship Insider at www.championshipinsider.com. It is a free membership site, sign up today!
Drivers from participating ASA Member Tracks across the United States have chosen one of their divisions as their premiere divisions. Those drivers in the premiere division, who are ASA members in good standing, will compete at their ASA Member Track to first win their track championship. Once they accomplish that goal, they will then be matched up against the other premiere division champions to determine the National Champion.
ASA has once again teamed up with speednetdirect.com to create a proprietary point system that is much like a batting average in baseball. Some of the factors used to create an average are wins, number of cars passed, finishes, car count, and number of events. No one knows what has more of a factor over another.
Race fans and competitors can follow the standings on www.speednetdirect.com. The opening page shows the current track point leaders that would be eligible for the National Championship if it ended today. The East and West Region standings give a complete listing of all of the drivers participating this season.
Past National Champions are Cary Stapp, Thunderhill Raceway (2008), Tommy Cloce, Adirondack Speedway (2009), and Bryan Wordelman, Rocky Mountain Raceways (2010).
ASA Racing PR
JR Motorsports co-owner and general manager Kelley Earnhardt announced today that Hayes Jewelers will serve as primary sponsor of the team’s No. 72 late model entry at Martinsville Speedway for the Virginia Is For Racing Lovers 300 on Oct. 9. 20-year-old Josh Berry will drive the Hayes Jewelers Chevrolet for the event.
Owned by Bruce Hayes and based in Lexington, N.C., Hayes Jewelers has been known as the “King of Diamonds” since 1939. The company’s involvement in NASCAR dates back to the 1950’s when it sponsored numerous races at Bowman Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C. All totaled, Hayes owns 19 modified championships as a car owner over the years.
“Mr. Hayes and Hayes Jewelers have been a huge supporter of NASCAR and local short-track racing for decades,” said JRM late model team manager L.W. Miller. “We’re very appreciative of his support for this race, and we’re hopeful we can get the Hayes Jewelers Chevrolet to victory lane next month at Martinsville.”
Hayes’ initial involvement with the Earnhardt family began in the early 1980’s when he sponsored Dale Earnhardt Sr. in races at Caraway Speedway. Hayes built the .455-mile speedway, located in Asheboro, N.C., in 1966. Originally a dirt track, he spearheaded a paving effort to the facility in 1972 and finally sold it in 1977.
“I’ve always been on the lookout for young up-and-comers,” Hayes said. “Joining forces with JR Motorsports and giving Josh an opportunity is exciting for us. Martinsville is a great, historic short track and sure to be a very entertaining race.”
Berry and the No. 72 Hayes Jewelers team will participate in an open test session at Martinsville Speedway on Wed., Sept. 21, 2011 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in preparation for the race. The test session is open to the public.
Richard Childress Racing has promoted Kent Day to interim director of competition from his previous position as technical director with the 12-time NASCAR championship winning organization.
Former RCR director of competition Scott Miller has taken a position with another motorsports organization.
"Kent brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to his new position as interim director of competition at Richard Childress Racing," said Mike Dillon, RCR's vice president of competition. "As technical director, he played an integral role in the overhaul and turnaround of RCR's competition department beginning in mid-2008. He already understands our competition philosophy and will now play an even more important role in RCR's on-track success.
"Scott Miller has played an important role for many years and in many different positions at RCR, including getting the most talented people in the right positions in his role as competition director. He and Kent have worked closely over the past couple of years so this transition period should be short and seamless. All of us at RCR wish him well in his new endeavor."
Day joined RCR as technical director of competition in 2009 and has been involved in motorsports since 1996. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Florida Institute of Technology (1984), a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Tech (1986) and a Doctorate in Mechanical Engineering from Clemson University (2001).
"This is a tremendous opportunity with a fantastic race team," said Day. "Scott set up a great team of people to make RCR successful and whose focus now is on a number of moving targets. We have nine more weeks to do everything we can to put the best race cars and trucks on the track. We have to do everything we can to capitalize on the opportunity to win championships in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, and the ARCA Series. Finally, we are looking within our organization to find ways to perform better as our sport continues to evolve, to look at different ways to approach new opportunities and new processes."
Tickets go on sale today for NASCAR Acceleration Weekend 2012, a combination of events and activities scheduled for Jan. 20-22 in Charlotte, N.C. that gives race fans an unprecedented, festival-like experience featuring legends of the sport and stars of today and tomorrow. Ticket prices range from $10 for individual event admission to $299 for a VIP weekend package.
Starting off the inaugural NASCAR Acceleration Weekend on Friday, Jan. 20 is the induction of the NASCAR Hall of Fame’s Class of 2012 – Richie Evans, Dale Inman, Darrell Waltrip, Glen Wood, and Cale Yarborough – at a dinner and induction ceremony located in the Charlotte Convention Center, which adjoins the NASCAR Hall of Fame. This revered group, comprised of three drivers, a crew chief and a team owner, marks the third class to be inducted into the Hall.
Following the Induction Ceremony on Saturday, Jan. 21 is the NASCAR Preview 2012 Presented by Sprint, a new addition to the annual calendar reminiscent of popular season preview events of the past. The fan-focused, all-day event located inside the Charlotte Convention Center will feature driver and show car appearances, simulators, games, prizes, and a host of other fan-friendly and interactive activities. The highlight of the day for many fans will be autograph and on-stage Q&A sessions with drivers from the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, plus all four living NASCAR Hall of Fame members inducted the previous night.
The weekend’s activities continue into Sunday, Jan. 22 when the Hall of Fame exhibits of the five-member Class of 2012 will be unveiled inside the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
NASCAR Preview 2012 Presented by Sprint – Jan. 21
$10 advance ticket ($15 admission at the gate)
$20 advance ticket (includes same-weekend admission to NASCAR Hall of Fame)
Children five years of age and younger admitted free
2012 NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony – Jan. 20
$40 ticket for general seating (includes same-weekend admission to NASCAR Hall of Fame)
$75 ticket for premium seating (includes same-weekend admission to NASCAR Hall of Fame)
NASCAR Acceleration Weekend 2012 – Jan. 20-22
$299 VIP ticket package; includes the following:
· One Hall of Fame Induction Dinner seat, including Jacket Presentation
· One admission to Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
· One admission to the NASCAR Preview 2012, Presented by Sprint
· One admission to the First Look at 2012 Class exhibits
· One Crew Chief membership to NASCAR Hall of Fame
For more information, visit www.nascaracceleration2012.com.
Dave Moody is reporting that either Bayne or possibly Stenhouse will be in the No. 21 for the Wood Brothers Racing next year. Eddie Wood has been quoted as saying that he would like Bayne to come back but it's up to Ford and the Sponsors who fund the operation for the Wood's.
As of now the 2012 Sprint Cup Series schedule has been completed, NASCAR is holding up on the Nationwide and Camping World Series as they still have some up in the air races like Montreal in which was said to be closing but negotiations are underway to keep the race there. One possibly would be to move the race to The Rock in which was added back to the NASCAR circuit for the first time since 2004. While there are still several unfilled spots in the Camping World Series, Iowa Speedway added a second truck event and word is that Gresham Motorsports Park in Georgia has held discussions with NASCAR on holding an event there.
Speaking of Iowa Speedway president Jerry Jauron is resigning after 3 1/2 years on the job to move on to C & L Companies who is a motorsports manufacturing company.
Richard Childress is still working on sponsorship for Bowyer who has held talks with other race team including Petty, MWR and more. Childress said at Chicago that he will continue to work on sponsorship for Bowyer until he gets word that a deal with another team is signed and sealed. Childress also this week has been elected to be inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in Talladega and will be inducted with 2 other members, to be announced later, on May 2.
Fuel Mileage Costs Menard a Top-10 Finish at Chicagoland
After inclement weather postponed the first race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup to Monday afternoon, Paul Menard and the Zecol/Menards team started the Geico 400 second and were a mainstay in the top 10 until a fuel mileage gamble left the No. 27 Chevrolet Impala one lap shy of the fuel needed to take the checkered flag under full power, forcing the team to coast to a 20th-place finish at Chicagoland Speedway. Under overcast skies, Menard took the green flag on the outside of the front row and settled into the third position after the first circuit around the 1.5-mile oval. He remained in the top five and was running fourth when a lap-30 competition caution was called. With Menard reporting that the racer was just a little tight in the center of the turns, the Slugger Labbe-led crew changed four tires with air pressure adjustments and packed the Chevrolet with fuel. Losing ground only to a team that opted for two tires, Menard restarted fifth on lap 35. A long green-flag run ensued and was halted on lap 69 when the yellow flag was displayed for debris with the No. 27 running fourth. Menard returned to pit road for additional air pressure adjustments to assist with a late-developing loose condition. Two additional pit stops while under caution and one under green-flag conditions allowed the Zecol/Menards team to work on the car's persistent loose handling with air pressure and wedge adjustments. Menard fell out of the top 10 only briefly from lap 185 until a lap-204 caution afforded him another visit to pit road where the No. 27 crew executed another speedy pit stop that catapulted him from 11th to the ninth position. With fuel mileage coming into play, Menard's final trip down pit road was for fuel-only on lap 214 and the No. 27 team held their breath for the closing 53 laps, knowing that it would be close. As he took the white flag in the seventh position, Menard reported that he was out of fuel. He joined many other competitors in coasting to the checkered flag, crossing the start finish-line in the 20th position.
Start - 2 Finish - 20 Laps Led - 0 Points - 23
PAUL MENARD QUOTES:
"We ran up front all day long but, unfortunately, just ended up on the losing side of the fuel mileage battle this weekend. We had a good car today and the No. 27 Zecol/Menards pit crew was damn good on pit road. Everyone worked really hard this weekend and we made a ton of ground up from where we started in practice on Friday. We have nine more races to go this season and we're going to go into each weekend looking to get another win."
Harvick Claims Runner-Up Finish and Points Lead at Chicagoland
Kevin Harvick and the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet team left Monday's Geico 400 at Chicagoland Speedway with a second-place finish and the lead in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver point standings. After the start of the 400-mile event was delayed a day due to rain, Harvick rolled off from the 30th starting position when the field took the green flag on Monday morning. On the first run of the day, the red and white machine was able to gain five positions before NASCAR threw the yellow flag for a competition caution at lap 30. Before bringing the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet down pit road for service, he radioed to the team that the car's handling was "tight through the middle and loose off" and that he needed it to "turn better through the center" of the corner. He pitted at lap 32 for four tires and fuel and restarted from the 26th position. After the field took the green flag on lap 35, Harvick was able to gain eight positions in just five laps. After working his way up to 15th when the caution flag waved again at lap 70, he and radioed the team that the car was "rolling right there." The Budweiser team pitted once again for four tires and fuel. They unfortunately lost some ground on the stop as Harvick had to maneuver around tires from the team pitted in front of the No. 29 team on pit road, a problem they encountered throughout the 267-lap race. The No. 29 Chevrolet Impala restarted in the 16th position on lap 75 and Harvick cracked the top 10 for the first time at lap 80, then stayed there throughout the remainder of the race. The No. 29 team pitted four more times for tires and fuel, running as high as fifth before the team's final trip down pit road at lap 214. On that stop, the team took fuel only and told Harvick to save fuel as they appeared to be several laps shy of the checkered flag. The Bakersfield, Cali. native restarted in the seventh position and focused on saving fuel during the first part of the run. In the closing laps Harvick picked up the pace and with that he began to pick off positions as other teams started conserving fuel. He worked his way up to second with five laps to go and started closing in on the leader. The distance was too great for the short number of laps remaining, however, and Harvick crossed the start-finish line in second position, marking his seventh top 10 finish in his 11 starts at Chicagoland Speedway. Harvick now leads the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver point standings by a seven-point margin over Tony Stewart.
Start - 30 Finish - 2 Laps Led - 0 Points - 1
KEVIN HARVICK QUOTE:
"We had to save a lot (of fuel) there at the beginning (of the run) and I just didn't know how much we had in our tank there at the end but I was hoping we had enough. Everybody on the Budweiser Chevrolet did a good job and this is a good way to start the Chase. I wasn't ever comfortable but I knew I had saved a little bit under caution and a little bit at the beginning of that run and they felt comfortable with the lap times. Everybody on our Budweiser Chevrolet did a great job and knowing exactly how far we could go, we ran out coming on to pit road there, so good first race for us."
Burton and Caterpillar Racing Team Overcome Adversity to Post Top 15 at Chicagoland
Jeff Burton and the Caterpillar Racing team battled back from an early ill-timed caution to earn a top-15 finish in the GEICO 400 at Chicagoland Speedway on Monday. After Sunday's inclement weather in the Windy City forced NASCAR to postponed the start of the 267-lap event until Monday, Burton took the green flag from the 22nd position in the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet and moved into the top 20 soon after. Crew chief Luke Lambert pulled out some strategy early in the race, calling for a two-tire stop during a NASCAR-mandated competition caution on lap 30 in order to gain track position. The decision paid off as Burton lined up the yellow and black machine ninth for the restart on lap 34. The South Boston, Va., native maintained his track position in and around the top 10 until hitting pit road for a green-flag pit stop on lap 69. As the No.31 Cat Chevrolet received service of four tires and fuel, the caution flag waved on the track for debris, requiring Burton to take the wave around to remain on the lead lap. When the field returned to green-flag conditions on lap 75, Burton was sitting in the 31st position. Though it was early in the 400-mile event, the Cat Racing Team spent the remaining laps scrapping their way back into contention. After starting near the back of the field for the lap-75 restart, a long green-flag run allowed the leader to reach the No. 31 Chevrolet, and Burton fell one lap down just as the caution flew on lap 144. Fortunately, he was in position to receive the 'Lucky Dog' pass and immediately made up the lost lap and following a four-tire pit stop, Burton lined up in the 21st position on lap 150. Burton moved up to 19th position before the next caution flew on lap 164 and Lambert once again called for a two-tire pit stop, gaining the team an additional three spots and lining up the No. 31 in the 16th position as the field returned to green with 100 laps remaining in the event. Up to 13th by lap 200, Burton's progress was slowed as the caution flag flew again on lap 205. Difficulty during the team's four-tire pit stop dropped the Cat Chevrolet to the 17th spot for the restart on lap 208. A quick caution just four laps later allowed Lambert to call Burton to pit road for one final stop of the day, this time choosing for a fuel-only visit, which returned the 21-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race winner to green-flag conditions in the 15th position. Burton immediately went into fuel saving mode with his Cat machine, losing a few spots in the process early in the run but he ultimately earned them back as the No. 31 Chevrolet was able to make it to the checkered flag on fuel, claiming the 15th-place finish in the process.
Start - 22 Finish - 15 Laps Led - 0 Points Position - 24
JEFF BURTON QUOTE:
"We had a few setbacks due to the timing of some caution flags today, but ultimately battled back for the 15th-place finish. This Caterpillar Racing Team is gaining each week and looking to improve further at Loudon next weekend."
Bowyer Survives Fuel Mileage Race with Top-10 Finish at Chicagoland
Clint Bowyer and the No. 33 Cheerios/Hamburger Helper Chevrolet team finished off a consistent run with a top-10 finish in the rain-delayed GEICO 400 at Chicagoland Speedway. Starting from the 21st position on Monday after NASCAR and track officials were forced to postpone the event on Sunday due to rain, the Richard Childress Racing driver started off the 267-lap event by gaining five positions in the first 30 laps before NASCAR officials called a mandatory competition caution on lap 30. After getting four fresh Goodyear tires and Sunoco E15 fuel during the competition caution, the Emporia, Kan., native jumped up four more positions to 12th before the red and yellow machine started to become loose off and tight in the center of the 18-degree banked corners of the 1.5-mile oval. The four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race winner continued to give feedback to crew chief Shane Wilson over the next 100 laps as Wilson directed the "Helping Hands" pit crew to make necessary adjustments on the No. 33 Chevrolet to fix the loose-handling condition. By lap 211, the 32-year-old driver found himself in the top 10. When the final caution flag was displayed on lap 214 the team made their final pit stop of the day and Wilson elected to take fuel only playing a strategy dependant on the race running under green-flag conditions until the end. Bowyer ran 15th until 13 laps to go, and had enough Sunoco fuel to make it to the end of the 400-mile race as many other competitors in the 43-car field started to run out of gas. Bowyer drove his Chevrolet Impala through the field with ease, securing a seventh-place finish for his 10th top-10 finish of the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. With the strong finish, Bowyer gained a spot in NSCS driver championship point standings, improving to 13th-place.
Start - 21 Finish - 7 Laps Led - 0 Points - 13
CLINT BOWYER QUOTE:
"It was a good day for the No. 33 Cheerios/Hamburger Helper team. We finally had luck on our side and didn't run out of gas at the end. Shane (Wilson, crew chief) called a good race and the pit crew was consistent on pit road."
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
RACE: Fast Five 225
TRACK: Chicagoland Speedway
DATE: September 16, 2011
Austin Dillon and RCR's No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Team Visit Victory Lane at Chicagoland Speedway
Richard Childress Racing's Austin Dillon and the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet team earned their second win of 2011 on Friday night at Chicagoland Speedway, the fourth of the sophomore NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver's career. With the victory, Dillon moved up to second in the NCWTS point standings, just three markers shy of the point lead with seven races remaining in the season. Dillon started the Fast Five 225 from the fifth position but to seventh as he struggled with a loose-handling chassis during his initial run. He led lap 45 to gain a valuable championship bonus point as green-flag pit stops began to cycle through before pitting himself for four tires and fuel on lap 46. Dillon fell one lap down to the race leader following his pit stop, but was the recipient of the Lucky Dog award when the caution flag was displayed on lap 57. Crew chief Danny Stockman instructed Dillon to pit during the caution period for fuel and a track bar adjustment to correct the loose-handling condition. He restarted in the sixth position at the tail end of the longest line when green-flag racing resumed on lap 65. He was running third with 20 laps remaining when he made his final pit stop of the night under green-flag conditions. By taking right-side tires only, the Bass Pro Shops team fired off a pit stop in less than six seconds and Dillon beat his competitors off of pit road, assuming the race lead with 13 laps remaining. The RCR entry was extremely fast during the final run, and Dillon crossed the finish line nearly five seconds ahead of Kevin Harvick to earn the win.
Start - 5 Finish - 1 Laps Led - 17 Points - 2
AUSTIN DILLON QUOTES: "This is the biggest win of my career, I think. It means the most to me because we beat those Cup guys. I ran up there, racing with Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick. Kevin was great all night but my crew chief, Danny Stockman, made the call at the end for two tires. Danny knows that when I get out front it's like smelling blood for a shark. When we got out there, we could just take off. The team kept us out front by gaining spots every time we came to pit road. I love coming to pit road when they're like that. It's awesome."
Rookie Joey Coulter Brings Home Top-15 Finish at Chicago
After fighting an ill-handling Chevrolet Silverado for most of the 150-lap event, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series rookie Joey Coulter finished 12th in the Fast Five 225 at Chicagoland Speedway. The Miami Springs, Fla., native started the race in the 11th position and immediately reported to crew chief Harold Holly that his No. 22 RCR Graphics Center Chevrolet was loose in turns three and four, which made it difficult to gain momentum and pass other competitors down the 2,400-foot frontstretch of the 1.5-mile oval. On lap 42, Holly called the 21-year-old driver to pit road under green-flag conditions for a four-tire pit stop with chassis adjustments. Fifteen laps later, the caution flag was displayed pinning Coulter one lap down to the leaders. After green-flag racing resumed on lap 66, Coulter fought hard to get in position to receive the "lucky dog" pass from NASCAR. Instead, another caution flag came out before he could get there and Coulter was forced to take the "wave around" pass to get back on the lead lap in 16th with 62 laps to go. The Richard Childress Racing driver wrestled a tight-handling truck the remainder of the race, but was able to pass four more competitors before taking the checkered flag at the Joliet, Ill.,-based facility in 12th place. He now sits seventh in the NCWTS driver championship point standings.
Start -11 Finish - 12 Laps Led - 0 Points - 7
JOEY COULTER QUOTE:
"It was just a bizarre night for the No. 22 RCR Graphics Center Chevrolet. For some reason, we couldn't find the balance on the truck. We were loose, tight, then loose again and ended up finishing tight. I just hate it for these guys on the No. 22 team. They work hard and build me fast trucks every weekend. Also, congratulations to my RCR teammate, Austin Dillon, on his win."
ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards
RACE: Kentuckiana Dealers 200
TRACK: Salem Speedway
DATE: September 17, 2011
Good Points Night for Tim George Jr. at Salem Speedway
Tim George Jr. and the No. 31 Applebee's/Potomac Family Dining Group team earned their eighth top-five finish of the 2011 season with a third-place result in the ARCA Fall Classic 200 at Salem Speedway. George started Saturday night's 200-lap main event from the 12th position and began making his way into the top 10 when contact was made with another competitor bringing out the first caution of the night on lap eight. George suffered minimal hood damage and was able to remain on the racing surface during the caution period. The New York, N.Y., native restarted 10th when green-flag racing resumed on lap 11 and continued climbing through the top 10 for the next 50 circuits. The Gere Kennon-led team was called to pit road for their first stop of the night under the ensuing caution for right-side tires and fuel on lap 64. Quick work by the RCR pit crew granted George a fifth-place starting position for the lap-70 restart. With a good-handling Chevrolet at his finger tips, George ran inside the top five for the remaining 130 laps around the half-mile bullring. He was scored third when the caution flag was displayed on lap 148, during which time the team made their final pit stop of the race for four fresh Hoosier tires and Sunoco fuel. Green-flag racing resumed on lap 153 with George in second-place and the veteran ARCA driver continued racing in the top half of the field. With less than 20 laps remaining, George made contact with another competitor while running third, bringing out the final caution of the night. With no damage to his No. 31 Chevrolet, George did not pit and restarted third with seven laps remaining and was able to keep his position for the checkered flag at lap 200 resulting in his eighth top five finish of the season. With his third-place finish, George closed the gap between himself and the fifth-place contender in points and now sits 30 markers outside the top-five with two races remaining in the season.
Start - 12 Finish - 3 Laps Led - 0 Point Position - 6
TIM GEORGE JR QUOTE:
"It was a good run for the No. 31 Applebee's/Potomac Family Dining Group Chevrolet team, despite suffering that hood damage. We came here with the intention of finishing in the top-five or getting the win, and we did just that in finishing third. It was a good point's day for us. It's been a good season for us on the short tracks, and we proved that again tonight."
Ty Dillon Earns a Solid, Top 10 Finish at Salem Speedway
Ty Dillon and the No. 41 Hemelgarn/Childress Insitute of Pediatric Trauma Chevrolet team finished eighth in Saturday night's ARCA Fall Classic 200 at Salem Speedway after a loose-handling condition plagued them for a majority of the night. Dillon started the 200-lap affair from the 14th position and quickly climbed into the top 10 by lap eight when the first caution of the night was displayed. Green-flag racing resumed on lap 11, and the young driver radioed to his crew informing them the car was free in the center of the corners. Relief came on lap 64 as the yellow flag was waved over the 34-car field. Crew chief Scott Naset called the No. 41 Chevrolet to pit road for right-side tires, fuel and a track bar adjustment. Quick work by the pit crew permitted Dillon the sixth spot for the lap-70 restart. Unfortunately, the adjustments didn't help the Lexington, N.C., native, and he began slipping back before being scored eighth on lap 87. Under the ensuing caution, Dillon pitted for a wedge adjustment to alleviate the loose-handling condition plaguing the team. Restarting ninth when green-flag racing resumed on lap 93, Dillon continued to fight the loose racer and slipped to 12th before a lap-148 caution granted the Welcome, N.C.-based team another opportunity to make a trip to pit road. The Naset-led team serviced the No. 41 Chevrolet Impala with four fresh Hoosier tires and fuel in hopes the new tires would remedy the loose condition. As the green flag waved on lap 153, Dillon improved his position by three spots, moving up to eighth, proving that four fresh tires were the answer to the loose-handling conditions. Unfortunately, with time running out, Dillon was unable to make up anymore spots in the final 30 laps resulting in an eighth-place result.
Start -14 Finish -8 Laps Led -0 Points - 1 (leads by 350 points)
TY DILLON QUOTE:
"It was a frustrating night for the No. 41 Hemelgarn/CIPT Chevrolet team. Flash (crew chief Scott Naset) and the guys built a fast car and it showed when we unloaded. We ended up with a bad tire and couldn't recover from that. However, to be able to finish in the top-10, despite our struggles, shows just how strong this RCR team is. We'll head to Kansas Speedway with hopes of a better finish."
2012 Ford Explorer And VIP Trip To NASCAR After The Lap Up For Grabs With The "SEND ME 2 VEGAS" Sweepstakes19 Sep 2011 Written by Steven B. Wilson
The second annual “SEND ME 2 VEGAS” sweepstakes begins today, giving one fan a chance to win a 2012 Ford Explorer XLT SUV valued at up to $33,000, two VIP tickets to NASCAR After The Lap, the opportunity to be featured in an on-air promotional spot on GSN (Game Show Network), a two-night stay at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Las Vegas and more.
“NASCAR has the most passionate and loyal fans in all of sports," said Norris Scott, vice president of partnership marketing and business solutions for NASCAR. “They are our greatest competitive advantage, especially for partners such as Ford and Coca-Cola. The inclusion of GSN as a promotional partner has added a layer of intrigue and excitement to SEND ME 2 VEGAS by putting one of these loyal fans in their own NASCAR-themed TV spot on GSN, and has helped it evolve into one of our most compelling marketing platforms."
For more information on the sweepstakes, visit http://www.multivu.com/mnr/52092-send-me-2-vegas-sweepstakes-2012-ford-explorer-vip-trip-nascar and www.NASCARafterthelap.com.
Fans can enter the “SEND ME 2 VEGAS” sweepstakes at www.NASCARafterthelap.com and at Chase for the NASCAR Sprint CupTM races at The Sprint Experience and at select races at the Coca-Cola® display.
“SEND ME 2 VEGAS is an instrumental platform in Ford’s marketing strategy for NASCAR,” said Jamie Allison, director of Ford Racing. “In addition, NASCAR After The Lap offers us quality interaction with our customers, which is invaluable. We look forward to participating each year and want to encourage fans to register today for the SEND ME 2 VEGAS sweepstakes and the 2012 Ford Explorer XLT SUV.”
GSN has partnered with NASCAR on “SEND ME 2 VEGAS” to feature the sweepstakes’ grand-prize winner in an on-air promotional spot that will air in early 2012 on GSN. The feature is part of GSN’s “The World Needs More Winners” branding campaign, which is designed to identify, celebrate and inspire all types of winners. Throughout the “SEND ME 2 VEGAS” entry period, GSN will air a series of on-air spots featuring several NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers discussing their NASCAR winning moment and encouraging viewers to enter the “SEND ME 2 VEGAS” sweepstakes. To view NASCAR winning moments from GSN, visit www.NASCARafterthelap.com.
The third annual, fan-favorite event, NASCAR After The Lap, will return as a feature program during NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion’s Week. Sponsored by Ford Motor Company and Coca-Cola, NASCAR After The Lap is known for its unfiltered, “tell-all” format featuring the 2011 top-12 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers. Tickets will go on sale October 3 for the Dec. 1, 2011, event which will be held at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas.
What is believed to be the final link to the treacherous but colorful era of the "riding mechanic" at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has been severed with the passing of Joe Kennelly, who died Friday, Sept. 16. He was 97.
There are now no pre-World War II on-track participants still living.
Kennelly, born in Seattle but an Indianapolis resident since childhood, rode in the 1936 Indianapolis 500 with former motorcycle racing standout Johnny Seymour, whose sixth and final "500" start came while driving a car which had several local connections. Owned by driver Shorty Cantlon, an Indianapolis resident at the time, the Miller-powered car was sponsored by Sullivan & O'Brien, a downtown automobile dealership which had been in existence for only three years.
Seymour qualified with an average speed of 113.169 mph (10 laps, 25 miles at the time) but lasted only 13 laps before being eliminated by clutch failure.
Kennelly returned in 1937 and rode a few laps of relief at the mid-point for his colleague Freddie Mangold in a car started by Cantlon, but this was the final year for riding mechanics. The role became optional for the next few years, and not surprisingly, there were no takers.
Kennelly, who attended Butler, San Diego and Purdue universities, later hired on at an Allison Engineering plant just south of the Speedway and retired in 1982 after 42 years, having become a superintendent for the Allison Gas Turbine division of General Motors. He returned in 1984 as a consultant and remained as such until 1989.
Viewing will take place at 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 23 followed by a funeral Mass at noon, both at The Church of St. Pius X, 7200 Sarto Drive, Indianapolis.
NASCAR announced today that it has joined Techniques for Effective Alcohol Management (TEAM) Coalition, an alliance that promotes responsible drinking and positive fan behavior at sports facilities through the Responsibility Has Its Rewards campaign. NASCAR’s membership launches with a promotion conducted in partnership with MillerCoors that will reward one responsible NASCAR fan with a grand prize trip to Las Vegas, Nev. to attend the season-ending festivities that crown the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion.
“NASCAR is committed to promoting responsible behavior and enhancing the overall fan experience,” said Marcus Jadotte, NASCAR vice president of public affairs and multicultural development. “We are proud to join MillerCoors and the other members of TEAM Coalition in an effort to drive responsible alcohol consumption awareness to NASCAR partners and fans.”
TEAM Coalition is an alliance of 20 organizations, including professional and collegiate sports, entertainment facilities, concessionaires, stadium service providers, the beer industry, broadcasters, governmental traffic safety experts and others. Its members are united by their mission to provide effective alcohol service training and promote responsible alcohol consumption to enhance the entertainment experience while reducing alcohol-related instances in facilities and on the road.
“At MillerCoors, we believe that with great beer comes great responsibility and we’re thrilled to partner with NASCAR to help promote responsible alcohol consumption at the track,” said Kim Marotta, vice president of corporate social responsibility at MillerCoors. “For many fans, enjoying a beer on race day is part of the NASCAR experience, and we want to encourage fans to enjoy the race responsibly and plan ahead for a safe ride home from the track.”
Beginning Sunday at Chicagoland Speedway and later at four additional Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup races, NASCAR fans at least 21 years in age can pledge at designated driver booths to be a designated driver and help promote responsible alcohol consumption at the race track. Fans can also enter online at www.rhir.org.
The Responsibility Has Its Rewards pledge is to:
- Never Drive Drunk
- Always Have A Designated Driver
- Never Provide Alcohol to Minors
- Always Buckle Up - Every Trip, Every Time
Fans who pledge will be entered into a sweepstakes, and following each race, one responsible fan will be randomly selected as the “Designated Driver of the Race” and be eligible to win the grand prize. The grand prize winner will be randomly selected from the five at-track semi-finalists, plus one online semi-finalist. The grand prize is a trip for two to the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion’s Week, held Nov. 30 to Dec. 2 in Las Vegas. The trip includes airfare, hotel, local transportation and access to exclusive events that week.
The five NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races on the 2011 schedule that fans can pledge at-track include:
· Sept. 18 at Chicagoland Speedway
· Sept. 25 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway
· Oct. 15 at Charlotte Motor Speedway
· Oct. 23 at Talladega Superspeedway
· Oct. 30 at Martinsville Speedway
"The success of the Responsibility Has Its Rewards campaign with NASCAR and MillerCoors is a direct result of the commitment from our members and all the designated-driver program partners, including the tracks, concessionaire companies and state offices of highway safety," said Jill Pepper, executive director of TEAM Coalition. "Teamwork is what this campaign is all about. We are demonstrating that when everyone – including the fans – takes responsibility, everyone wins."
For more information on Responsibility Has Its Rewards, visit www.GreatBeerGreatResponsibility.com.