Celebrate the holidays and the New Year by giving the gift of speed from New Hampshire Motor Speedway and the Richard Petty Driving Experience. Make "The Magic Mile" your one-stop shopping destination with tickets to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series LENOX Industrial Tools 301 or SYLVANIA 300 and a Ride-Along with the Richard Petty Driving Experience.
In what could be the deepest and most talented field to date, NASCAR announced Wednesday the list of eligible competitors for the 2012 Shootout.
Greg Zipadelli, who won two Cup Series championship and 34 races in 13 years at Joe Gibbs Racing, in the last 48 hours negotiated a release from his JGR contract that allows him to join Stewart-Haas Racing as its competition director, a role that will include working as Danica Patrick's crew chief in her Sprint Cup debut, the 2012 Daytona 500.
Zipadelli comes to SHR from Joe Gibbs Racing where he served as crew chief for the No. 20 team since 1999. It's where the 44-year-old from Berlin, Conn., began a 10-year tenure with Tony Stewart, the co-owner of SHR along with Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation.
NASCAR announced today the 2012 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour schedule that will feature traditional dates at some of the premier short tracks and speedways in the northeast.
In its 28th season of competition, the Whelen Modified Tour will see the 14-race slate spread across seven tracks in four states. New to the schedule in 2012 will be a return to Waterford (Conn.) Speedbowl.
On the track, it has been dubbed by some as the most exciting season in NASCAR history. But the 2011 season did not lack in entertaining, if not fascinating, moments away from the track as well. From television appearances and movie cameos to skydiving, NASCAR drivers and personalities certainly presented plenty of compelling options for these top moments.
A Virginia-born driver with a need to prove himself after losing the championship on NASCAR's premier division two seasons ago. A Virginia-born crew chief with a need to prove himself after getting fired despite winning the title this past year. In some ways, Denny Hamlin and Darian Grubb seemed made for one another.
That partnership was formalized Friday, when Joe Gibbs Racing announced that Grubb would lead Hamlin's No. 11 team beginning next season.
The IndyCar Series won't return to Las Vegas Motor Speedway next season, and its future at the track depends in part on what it learns from the investigation into Dan Wheldon's fatal accident.
Wheldon, a two-time Indianapolis 500 winner, was killed in the opening laps of the Oct. 16 season finale at Las Vegas. The investigation into the 15-car fatal accident is ongoing, and IndyCar has postponed releasing its 2012 schedule until it determines if the series can continue racing on high-banked ovals such as Las Vegas.
David Ragan spent Sunday flying home from the Snowball Derby, a prestigious late model race held annually in Pensacola, Fla., and his focus during the trip was a right-rear hub assembly that had broken down and knocked his car out of the event. Then he landed in Charlotte, flipped on his mobile telephone -- and suddenly realized he had much more pressing concerns.
"We land in Charlotte, and Twitter is blowing up, and we see reports that something is going to happen with the 22 program the following day," Ragan said.
Mike Ford, the crew chief who led Denny Hamlin to the brink of a Sprint Cup championship one year ago, is no longer in that position.
Joe Gibbs Racing announced Tuesday that Ford has been released as Hamlin's crew chief, capping a fall from a near championship-winning effort in 2010 to a 2011 campaign where the No. 11 team needed a wild card entry just to make the Chase.
As expected, veteran Sprint Cup driver Kurt Busch and Penske Racing announced Monday they have mutually decided to end their six-year relationship, effective immediately.
"I appreciate the victories that Kurt has brought Penske Racing and our sponsors over the past six years," team owner Roger Penske said in a statement released by the organization. "While I am disappointed that Kurt will not be racing for our team in the future, both Kurt and I felt that separating at this time was best for all parties, including our team and sponsors.
He stayed up until the wee hours of the morning playing craps. He joked about his waistline and his uncanny ability to pick up women. He pocketed check after check after check, the next almost always worth more than the previous one, and then spent a lot of that cash by bringing all 150 employees of Stewart-Haas Racing to Sprint Cup Champion's Week, and throwing a blowout after-party for everyone who was invited to Friday night's awards ceremony at Wynn Las Vegas.
One run of NASCAR dominance ended this year, when Tony Stewart snapped Jimmie Johnson's streak of five consecutive championships in NASCAR's premier division. But another continued Thursday, when Dale Earnhardt Jr. was awarded the sport's most popular driver trophy for a ninth year in a row.
Earnhardt received the award at the annual National Motorsports Press Association/Myers Brothers Luncheon at the Bellagio, and the trophy will go into the case near his sister Kelley's office at JR Motorsports along with the others.
Tony Stewart’s on a roll. And that’s a good feeling when you’re in Las Vegas.
Stewart and Stewart-Haas Racing teammate Ryan Newman won Wednesday’s “This Ain’t the Newlywed Game,” a riff on the television original hosted by Bob Eubanks. Stewart and Newman edged the team of Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch by most accurately recalling the estimated attendance of March’s Kobalt Tools 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
NASCAR announced today that the points system all NASCAR national series began using this year will be instituted in the regional touring level for 2012.
The points system was simplified to make it easier for fans, competitors and the industry to understand.
Richard Childress Racing has named Drew Blickensderfer as the crew chief for the No. 31 team with driver Jeff Burton for the 2012 Sprint Cup Series season.
Luke Lambert, interim crew chief during the latter part of the 2011 season for the No. 31 team, will assume a yet-to-be announced new position at RCR.
Eight days after winning the 2011 Sprint Cup title with Darian Grubb, Tony Stewart has a new crew chief.
Steve Addington will replace Grubb as crew chief for the three-time Cup champion at Stewart-Haas Racing, the team announced in a news release Monday.
Addington had served as crew chief for Penske Racing’s Kurt Busch for two seasons, following a nearly two-year stint as crew chief for Kurt’s brother, Kyle, at Joe Gibbs Racing.
Few people expected Brad Keselowski and the Penske Racing No. 2 team to win multiple races this year.
Fewer still thought the 27-year-old had a shot at qualifying for NASCAR’s Chase For The Sprint Cup.
And how many could have imagined that Keselowski would finish fifth – ahead of such stalwarts as five-time series champion Jimmie Johnson and four-timer Jeff Gordon?
There’s something to be said about going out on top, but this probably wasn’t the way Darian Grubb thought a possible departure from Stewart-Haas Racing would happen.
The crew chief for Tony Stewart was informed during the Chase – six weeks prior to the end of the year – that he wouldn’t be retained after the season. Grubb could have sulked and just cruised through the final six weeks.
Steve Addington, who helped guide Penske Racing driver Kurt Busch into NASCAR’s Chase For The Sprint Cup in 2010 and 2011, has parted ways with the team, according to Penske officials.
“Steve Addington is no longer with our organization. We appreciate the successes we experienced together and wish him the best in his future endeavors," the team said in a statement issued Tuesday.
NASCAR’s future was front and center Monday night as four champions in two national series were crowned.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr., 24 and Austin Dillon, 21, officially were proclaimed champions of the NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, respectively, on the Americana Ballroom stage at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel.
Carl Edwards kept waiting for Tony Stewart to make a mistake.
Though Stewart had won four of nine Chase races and kept putting pressure on the points leader, on and off the track, Edwards believed that Stewart would finally crack, and that he, and not Stewart, would finally walk away with the Sprint Cup championship.
Neither Brad Keselowski nor NASCAR would confirm nor deny an Associated Press report Keselowski has been fined $25,000 for critical comments he made about NASCAR’s switch to fuel injection.
NASCAR has fined drivers the last two years for comments that it believes hurts the credibility of the sport. It hasn’t announced the fines, but drivers have confirmed they were fined.
It was here at Phoenix International Raceway last season where Jimmie Johnson somehow saved his run of championships, stretching a fuel run to the finish and keeping close enough to Denny Hamlin that he could overtake him in the finale the next week. The five-time champion needed an ever bigger miracle Sunday, as his unprecedented streak of five consecutive titles neared its last gasp.
He didn't get it. Johnson finished a mediocre 14th on what had traditionally been one of his better tracks, and fell 68 points behind leader Carl Edwards with only next week's season-ender at Homestead-Miami Speedway remaining.
The remaining two contenders for the Sprint Cup championship have very different track records at Homestead-Miami Speedway, the facility where this year's title will ultimately be decided. But the crew chiefs for Carl Edwards and Tony Stewart each will draw his strategy from the same place -- last year's event at the 1.5-mile oval in South Florida.
Homestead is statistically Edwards' best track, a place where he's won twice and has an average finish better than any other driver.
It's all set up just the way it should be, and as close to the way NASCAR would have scripted it as it has been in a long, long time.
The Chase for the Sprint Cup is coming down to the final race this Sunday at Miami-Homestead Speedway with some real drama building. One race. Two drivers. And only three points separating them in the Chase standings.
Is there any question the final two contenders in the 2011 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup would be Tony Stewart and Carl Edwards? Not at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
What started out as a 12 man race has now become a two man show featuring Edwards and Stewart. Both have different styles of driving, different teams and a different history in the sport. Edwards is chasing his first title, but Stewart is looking to sit right where he did in 2005, at the head table.
Having NASCAR heavyweights such as Rick Hendrick, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Tony Stewart rooting you on in a budding stock-car career -- not to mention four-time IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti, who has a double-handful of NASCAR starts on his resume -- would be a solid vote of confidence.
When you add the self-confidence and proven racing ability of Danica Patrick, who's in the final three-race tune-up for a full-time Nationwide Series schedule in 2012, the future certainly looks promising.
The next-to-last landscape upon which Carl Edwards and Tony Stewart will wrestle for stock car supremacy has been a part of NASCAR's top series for almost a quarter-century, but that means almost nothing in the context of this weekend's racing.
Phoenix International Raceway, which had been one of International Speedway Corp.'s most neglected tracks for years, got a major upgrade this year.
NASCAR has fined Kyle Busch $50,000 and placed him on probation until Dec. 31 for his actions during the Nov. 4 Camping World Truck Series race at Texas Motor Speedway.
Busch violated Section 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing) of the 2011 NASCAR Rule Book. NASCAR took immediate action, parking Busch for the remainder of Friday night's event and maintaining the parked position for the Nationwide and Sprint Cup events scheduled for Saturday and Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway.
Tony Stewart backed up his smack talk with a convincing victory in Sunday's AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, the eighth race in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
With his fourth victory in the Chase and the 43rd of his career, Stewart put a dent in runner-up Carl Edwards' series lead, scoring maximum points (48) to trim Edwards' advantage from eight to three points with two races left in the season.
NASCAR took an unprecedented step Saturday morning at Texas Motor Speedway when it parked Kyle Busch for his remaining two races this weekend for "aggressive driving" in Friday night's Camping World Truck Series race.
NASCAR has little history of parking drivers across two series' lines for egregious actions. But a move affecting all three national series has never been made.
Until Friday, all we knew about Danica Patrick's 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule with Stewart-Haas Racing was the GoDaddy girl would start her Cup career with the Daytona 500.
Now we know the rest of it. Almost.
In addition to her full-time Nationwide Series schedule with JR Motorsports, Patrick will run Cup races at Daytona, Darlington, Bristol (the night race), Atlanta, Chicagoland, Dover (fall race), Texas (fall race) and Phoenix (fall race).
David Reutimann, the only Sprint Cup race winner in the short history of Michael Waltrip Racing, will not return to the team in 2012 -- opening the door for Mark Martin to potentially drive the No. 00 car on a limited basis next season.
MWR officially announced Thursday that Reutimann would not return. The 41-year-old Florida native scored the Waltrip team's first victory in a rain-shortened Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte in 2009, and also won at Chicagoland the following season.
Eddie Gossage spent Sunday afternoon in a television studio at Texas Motor Speedway, publicizing his upcoming race weekend in satellite interviews with local stations across Texas and Oklahoma. He kept one eye on a TV off in the corner, where the event at Martinsville Speedway was wrapping up. The Texas track president finished his interviews just in time to see Tony Stewart overtake Jimmie Johnson for the victory, and issue his now-famous challenge to points leader Carl Edwards -- the latter a large chunk of promotional manna that had fallen right into Gossage's lap.
Only weeks after adding Clint Bowyer, Michael Waltrip Racing appears on the brink of once again altering its driver lineup for the 2012 season -- this time through the addition of veteran Mark Martin on a limited basis.
Sources indicated Tuesday that the team is pursuing Martin to drive a limited schedule next year in the No. 00 Toyota currently piloted by David Reutimann, who is responsible for MWR's two victories on NASCAR's premier level.
Championship NASCAR team owner Rick Hendrick and his wife are recovering at home in Charlotte after each suffered minor injuries Monday night when the small jet carrying them to Key West, Fla., lost its brakes and crash landed at the island's airport.
Officials on the scene told the Associated Press that the Gulfstream 150 ran off the runway at Key West International Airport Monday at 7:45 p.m., and that Rick and Linda Hendrick, as well as a pilot and co-pilot, were taken to Lower Keys Medical Center.
Is it down to a two-man race now in the Chase for the Sprint Cup? If it is -- or even if it isn't -- can Brian Vickers manage to stay out of their way, and everyone else's?
Those were the burning questions lingering after Tony Stewart's rousing win Sunday in the wild and wooly Tums 500 at Martinsville Speedway.
About the only thing Brian Vickers regrets about his wild race at Martinsville Speedway Sunday is that his retaliation against Matt Kenseth didn’t cause more damage to Kenseth’s car and his championship hopes.
Vickers is not all that concerned that his retaliation against Kenseth impacted the finish of the race. He just wishes Kenseth had not already been running 30th when he chose to take him out.
A title Chase that had been as gentlemanly as a game of golf changed dramatically Sunday with rough racing and rapid retorts.
It is just what NASCAR fans have been awaiting.
They can thank Tony Stewart for the change in tone. With three weeks left in the season, let the excitement begin.
Stewart spiced his victory at Martinsville Speedway, which moved him to second in the season standings, eight points behind leader Carl Edwards, by proclaiming in Victory Lane: “(Edwards) better be worried. That’s all I’ve got to say. He’s not going to have an easy three weeks.”
Chad Knaus told driver Jimmie Johnson to intentionally damage the back end of his race car if the No. 48 team won Sunday's race at Talladega Superspeedway, the crew chief acknowledged Wednesday.
Knaus admitted giving the five-time NASCAR champion the pre-race instructions in order to "cover our bases" in case 500 miles of bump-drafting knocked the car beyond NASCAR's strict tolerances.
NASCAR has issued penalties to the No. 00, No. 47 and No. 56 teams that compete in the Sprint Cup Series as a result of rule infractions discovered during opening day inspection Oct. 21 at Talladega Superspeedway.
Crew chiefs Rodney Childers (No. 00), Frank Kerr (No. 47) and Chad Johnston (No. 56) have each been fined $50,000 and have been suspended from the next four Sprint Cup Series championship events.
When it came right down to it, Sunday's Good Sam Club 500 at Talladega Superspeedway was decided by a decidedly different set of opinions on how the race should be approached.
While some teams were intent on merely surviving and obviously drove as conservatively as possible -- and that's relatively speaking on a 2.66-mile oval where speeds frequently approach 200 miles per hour -- others were determined to run up front from the drop of the green flag.
It was a swan song for a lame duck.
Clint Bowyer surged past Richard Childress Racing teammate Jeff Burton through the tri-oval on the final lap at Talladega Superspeedway to win Sunday's Good Sam Club 500.
Bowyer, who will leave RCR for Michael Waltrip Racing next season, beat Burton to the start/finish line by .018 seconds to record his first victory of the season and the fifth of his career. The win was the 100th in the Sprint Cup Series for team owner Richard Childress.
As race car drivers, we all are keenly aware of what can happen to us every time we strap in behind the wheel of one of our cars. More times than we care to count -- as in Sunday's tragedy at Las Vegas Motor Speedway -- something happens that causes us to ask ourselves, "Is everything worth it?" To me the answer is ...
Yes. Without a doubt. At least it is in my case. Racing makes me who I am. It's what drives me. It's what I'm wired to do.
Sprint Cup drivers will have a new restrictor plate and a new maximum temperature at which they can run their engines at Talladega this weekend, but whether that impacts the two-car tandem draft remains to be seen.
While NASCAR officials have not said so publicly, they appear to want to see less of the two-car hookups that were prevalent in restrictor-plate races at Daytona and Talladega earlier this year.
Kasey Kahne woke up Monday thinking about Dan Wheldon and the wrenching pain felt by the late two-time Indianapolis 500 champion's family and friends.
Kahne didn't spend a moment thinking that it could have been him — even though the NASCAR driver seriously had considered entering the Izod IndyCar Series season finale in which Wheldon died in Sunday's 15-car accident at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
They negotiate 12 turns while going 150 mph on just two-wheels, and, this weekend, the riders of the Loudon Road Race Series will wrap up their 2011 season at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. With a picture perfect weather forecast predicted for both Saturday and Sunday, Loudon’s motorcycle stars are revved up for “The Magic Mile’s” fastest finale.
When the series visited NHMS in September, Dunbarton, N.H. native Scott Greenwood finally broke through to grab his first Middle Weight Grand Prix victory of the seven race season.
Despite being unable to come to contract terms with driver Clint Bowyer, who announced last Friday that he will drive beginning in 2012 for Michael Waltrip Racing, Richard Childress said Thursday that he could not be more pleased with the future direction in which his company appears to be headed.
Speaking after a function where he appeared together with Bowyer to promote an upcoming special paint scheme on the No. 33 Chevrolet Bowyer currently drives for Richard Childress Racing, Childress said he tentatively plans to scale down from four full-time Sprint Cup teams to three full-time teams in 2012.
In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, NASCAR is “going pink” with concentrated efforts during this weekend’s activities at Charlotte Motor Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway to build awareness and raise funds for breast cancer-aimed charitable organizations.
NASCAR will add pink accents to its NASCAR Sprint Cup, NASCAR Nationwide and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series vehicles during the upcoming race weekend.
The sponsorship picture at Joe Gibbs Racing will undergo a vast change next season, the Observer has learned.
At a news conference Thursday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Dollar General is expected to announce it will greatly increase its involvement in NASCAR, sponsoring both Sprint Cup and Nationwide series teams at JGR in 2012, several sources confirmed.
With six weeks left in the long seasons of NASCAR's three national touring series, it's time to check in on some of the top storylines currently percolating.
Let's start with the obvious, and that's the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
Yes, Jimmie Johnson is in the thick of it after winning Sunday's Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway. But let's not say he's "back in it." He never left.
He didn't take the lead in the Sprint Cup standings, didn't even move into second, but he didn't need to. Winning at Kansas Speedway in such dominating fashion was plenty good enough. And in the end, it was one of those afternoons that evoked the feeling of inevitability that's loomed over NASCAR's premier series for much of the past five years, one that grew stronger and stronger with each circuit the No. 48 car made around the track.
Jimmie Johnson is back. As if he ever left.
I don't know how many of you have ever driven a car without power steering. It's not easy on the highway, much less at 150 miles per hour around a high-banked oval like Dover International Speedway. I got to know firsthand what that is like this past weekend. If Dover isn't the hardest track on equipment, it's right at the top. It places a lot of stress on several areas of the car and, unfortunately, we ran into a little back luck this past weekend when our power steering belt was knocked off halfway through the race.
Over the past 95 years one toy has brought countless smiles to boys and girls faces across America, the Radio Flyer wagon. For race fans at New Hampshire Motor Speedway a fleet of little red wagons lined up along the grandstand fence means the excitement of NASCAR has finally arrived. But during this year’s SYLVANIA 300 one wagon was missing.
Jan and Diane Duisendecker of Canterbury, N.H., have been attending races at “The Magic Mile” since 2005 and each year, along with hundreds of others, they brought their wagon to help carry food and beverages to and from their campsite.
Sprint Cup drivers typically don’t look forward to tracks being repaved because their notes from past races become meaningless, leaving them less comfortable on a track that typically has more grip but also can be slick thanks to the new asphalt.
So while they were looking forward to testing Tuesday and Wednesday at the newly repaved and reconfigured Phoenix International Raceway,
Reed Sorenson, a championship contender in the Nationwide Series and a race winner earlier this season at Road America, is out of Turner Motorsports' No. 32 car in a move that could herald more departures from the NASCAR team.
Sorenson stands third in the Nationwide standings, 49 points behind leader Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Turner has also notified employees of a potential downsizing following this season due in part to the impending loss of sponsor Dollar General.
Thank you, Kurt Busch said, after screw-ups by Jimmie Johnson and Carl Edwards put Busch in position to win Sunday's AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway.
While Busch celebrated his second victory of the season and the 24th of his career in Victory Lane at the Monster Mile, runner-up Johnson and third-place Edwards sat in the nearby media center castigating themselves in the post-race news conference.
At speeds of up to 140 mph, experience the same thrills that Tony Stewart and Jeff Gordon felt during last weekend’s SYLVANIA 300 by driving a stock car around New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Beginning today through Sunday, the Richard Petty Driving Experience will offer several programs to fulfill every race fans need for speed.
NASCAR on Wednesday announced the 2012 schedule for the Sprint Cup Series, with a lineup featuring a number of adjustments from the 2011 edition.
"We believe the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule will once again provide fans with what they've come to expect every season -- the world's most exciting and competitive form of motorsports," NASCAR chairman and CEO Brian France said.. "Next year's schedule has a few adjustments that we think will be good for the fans and good for the overall flow of the season. One thing will remain constant, however, and that's the intense competition we see week in and week out from our drivers and race teams."
NASCAR will unveil the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule via its social/digital channels on today, Sept. 28, at noon ET.
NASCAR.COM will first unveil next year’s schedule on its homepage, with a question-and-answer Twitter chat session to follow involving NASCAR (@NASCAR) and Senior V.P. of Racing Operations Steve O’Donnell (@odsteve). Fans, media, teams and tracks are encouraged to participate throughout the one-hour interactive Twitter forum.
Despite several struggles with local teams New England fans still won with an action-packed weekend of thrilling playoff racing at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
NASCAR estimated a crowd of 95,000 and for those fans in attendance there was a little something for everyone. Guests had the chance to see a record breaking scratch ticket measuring 36-feet and 2-inches-tall by 18-feet and 8 inches-wide, a new member of the millionaire club and even some racing.
Tony Stewart may not have captured a win leading up to the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, but he sure is making up for it now. Stewart is two-for-two in NASCAR's playoffs after winning the SYLVANIA 300 today at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
The driver of the No. 14 Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevrolet passed Clint Bowyer on the second to last lap after Bowyer played a fuel mileage game and lost. Ironically, in a similar dramatic finish last year Stewart ran out of gas on the last lap and it was Bowyer to cross the Granite Stripe first.
The drama, excitement and anticipation of championship racing has arrived at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
The SYLVANIA 300 green flag will wave at 2 p.m., but there is plenty of action before on-track activities get started.
The NELCAR Legends Tour was up bright and early to take on the tricky .25-mile oval.
Country superstar duo Montgomery Gentry launch pre-race ceremonies with a concert beginning at 12:10 p.m. The group will perform hit songs including, “My Town,” “Hell Yeah," “Something to be Proud Of,” “Lucky Man” and “Back When I Knew it All.”
The year was 1997. Bill Clinton was the president, we lost Princess Diana and Mother Teresa, but we gained a little lamb clone named Dolly. We explored Mars for the first time through unmanned explorers and New England race fans enjoyed fall racing at New Hampshire Motor Speedway the very first time.
“The Magic Mile” is one of only 13 tracks in the world to host two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events in a season.
He did it again! Kyle Busch led all but 10 laps to capture his 30th NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory during the F.W. Webb 175 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway this afternoon.
This is Busch’s third consecutive win and sixth top-10 finish in seven races at “The Magic Mile” behind the wheel of a truck.
Ron Silk bump drafted to the end and grabbed his points lead back after winning the New Hampshire 100 at this afternoon.
Silk started from the pole position and went bumper-to-bumper with all of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour regulars to capture his third victory of the 2011 season and his second “Magic Mile” checkered flag.
By 8 a.m. cars were already racing around the New Hampshire Motor Speedway gearing up for a jam-packed tripleheader Saturday.
The action began early when the American-Canadian Tour hit the track for its practice session in preparations for the ACT Invitational later this afternoon.
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will qualify for the F.W. Webb 175 at 10:40 a.m. before the race begins at 3 p.m. Kevin Harvick was fastest in practice yesterday. The driver of the No. 2 JEGS Chevrolet looks to capture his first checkered flag in the Truck Series at “The Magic Mile.”
Brett Moffitt finally scored his first New Hampshire Motor Speedway win today during the rain shortened New Hampshire 125 event.
This was Moffitts third win of the season and seventh in his NASCAR K&N Pro Series East career. He now sits just 21 points unofficially behind Max Gresham in the championship standings.
The driver of the No. 00 Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota has finished as the race runner-up the last two trips to Loudon and has four top-five efforts in five career K&N Pro Series East events at NHMS.
Ryan “Rocketman” Newman captured his sixth New Hampshire Motor Speedway pole position during qualifying for Sunday’s SYLVANIA 300.
It didn’t come easy for the driver of the No. 39 Haas Automation Chevrolet. Newman was one of five drivers who had to wait out a 51 minute rain delay.
“I don't think I have seen that much drama going into the last five cars in all my years of racing,” said Newman. “My track was dry; I don't think it was any faster. I am just really proud of the team and hoping to follow what we did in the spring race.”
You know the ticket is big when it has to be bolted to the side of the grandstands. New Hampshire Motor Speedway made it big with a Guinness Book World Record for the largest scratch ticket ever made. The N.H. Lottery unveiled the gigantic instant ticket during last night’s FanFest.
The enormous scratch ticket measured a whopping 36-feet and 2-inches-tall by 18-feet and 8 inches-wide and was officially measured by Phillip Robertson of Guinness Book of World Records. It beat the previous record held in Australia.
Ron Silk, looking to get his NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour points lead back, will start on the point for Saturday's New Hampshire 100 after winning the Coors Light Pole Award Thursday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Silk had a top lap of 29.764 seconds (127.967 mph) around the 1.058-mile oval. It was the fifth career pole for the Norwalk, Conn., driver, who won at the ‘Magic Mile’ in 2009.
The New Hampshire 100 will be carried by SPEED Saturday at 1 p.m., prior to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race.
Darrell Wallace Jr., driver of the No. 6 U.S. Army Toyota set a new track record in the K&N Pro Series at New Hampshire Motor Speedway at a speed of 127.602 mph, capturing the pole position for tomorrow’s New Hampshire 125.
“It was a pretty stout day for the No. 6 team,” said Wallace. “We ended up winning practice and now to sit on the pole is awesome. I can’t say enough about the U.S. Army team and Revolution Racing. This is my Dover car so I just have to keep it in one piece and take it to the next race.”
The campers have parked and the grills are fired up, which only means one thing. NASCAR has returned to New Hampshire Motor Speedway for the SYLVANIA 300.
The WOKQ FanFest will kick off the jam-packed weekend with free fun for the entire family tonight beginning at 5 p.m. in the speedway’s Broadway Midway.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver of the No. 00 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota, David Reutimann will highlight the event signing autographs and hosting a fan Q&A beginning at 7:30 p.m.
The drama, excitement and anticipation of championship racing heads to New Hampshire Motor Speedway for this weekend’s SYLVANIA 300 activities.
The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup has begun and several questions are at the forefront of everyone’s minds. Will Tony Stewart build on his momentum from Chicagoland and take two straight wins? Can Kurt and Kyle Busch resurrect their dominating ways at “The Magic Mile”? Is Jimmie Johnson going to score another NHMS win?
Ron Hornaday Jr. has accomplished just about everything in his 14-year career in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, including a record four series championships.
This weekend the driver of the No. 33 Chevrolet will attempt to get his 50th win during the F.W. Webb 175 on Saturday, a feat that has never been accomplished in the series.
By the time the green flag drops on a race this weekend at NHMS, the weatherman will claim that autumn has started (officially on Sept. 23).
Yet, in New England, we've come to assume the weatherman isn't always right and we won't be listening to him this weekend. NASCAR's in town and our summer isn't over yet!
Brian Vickers says he isn’t feeling pressure to prove himself on the track, but that doesn’t mean his future is secure or he knows where he’ll be racing in 2012.
Vickers spent three years at Hendrick Motorsports before moving to Red Bull Racing in 2007, where he has spent the last five years.
But Red Bull wants to sell the team, and Vickers is unsure what will happen. Red Bull announced in late June that it was selling the team and it’s been nearly three months with no announcement of a buyer.
It’s safe to say Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch will never be best friends, and fans can bet the rivalry between the two hardcore racers will be in full force this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Harvick and Busch will duel once again at “The Magic Mile” during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series F.W. Webb 175 on Saturday and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series SYLVANIA 300 on Sunday.
Four years after making waves in NASCAR by signing on as the primary sponsor of Dale Earnhardt Jr., Amp Energy is phasing its brand off the car of the sport's most popular driver.
PepsiCo is expected to announce this week that Diet Mountain Dew will replace its Amp Energy brand as Earnhardt's primary sponsor for 16 races in 2012. The company has the primary sponsorship rights for 20 total races on the No. 88 car, and Amp will serve as an associate sponsor while also appearing on the hood for the other four races.
The fuel gauges were on empty when the checkered flag waved at Chicagoland Speedway this afternoon. Tony Stewart coasted where he could and nursed his car to an impressive win kicking off the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
Now, everyone must refuel rapidly and get ready for the SYLVANIA 300.
The exciting Chase weekend begins on Thursday with both the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour practice and qualifying.
Ten lucky fans will have the opportunity to wave the green flag during NASCAR Sprint Cup Series qualifying during FansFirst Pole Day on Friday, Sept. 23. The contest will be run through Twitter and entering is simple.
Anyone that takes a picture at the track from now through Thursday and shares it on Twitter using #ILoveNHMS will be entered to win. There is a maximum of one entry per day. Pictures may be of anything from the track to FanFest to your camper to, well, whatever strikes your creative mind!
Wrigley Field in Chicago has it’s beloved “Bleacher Bums,” the Cleveland Browns have their passionate “Dawg Pound,” Duke University’s basketball team has its “Cameron Crazies” and now New Hampshire Motor Speedway has the “Moose Head Maniacs.”
Recognizing the passion of NASCAR fans here at “The Magic Mile,” speedway officials announced today that they have designated a special section of seating in turns three and four to create a wicked fun fan zone for the “Moose Heads.”
Who says second place is the first loser?
For the first time since the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup began in 2004 New Hampshire Motor Speedway will not be the first stop on the 10 race playoff schedule, but it doesn’t mean that the 2011 SYLVANIA 300 is any less important.
Country singer Brett Eldredge will kick start the SYLVANIA 300 race weekend with a concert during the WOKQ FanFest at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Thursday, Sept. 22 beginning at 5 p.m.
Eldredge’s hit song “Raymond” is an emotional tale of a nursing home employee mistaken by a patient with Alzheimer's for her deceased son.
One of NASCAR's best is among those giving time and attention to the New Hampshire Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities during the SYLVANIA 300 race weekend, but there are many ways for fans to help New England children in need throughout the event.
On Tuesday, Sept. 20, feel the same thrill that you’re favorite NASCAR driver feels as you drive your own car around “The Magic Mile” for three laps during the SCC Laps for Charity event.
Jimmie Johnson is a realist -- he knows, sooner or later, another driver will end his streak of consecutive Sprint Cup championships that reached five with his 2010 title run.
"I have a lot invested in this, and I'd love to see the streak stay alive," Johnson said, "but at the same time, I've won five, and at some point we're going to lose one."
Don't read that as a concession speech. Johnson is just as committed to winning a sixth championship as he was to winning his first in 2006.
There was no back flipping for this win, but Carl Edwards did get a New England style victory as he trapped over a dozen lobsters today in Portsmouth, N.H. It was good practice for Edwards, who hopes to hoist Loudon the Lobster in victory lane after the SYLVANIA 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sept. 25.
As NASCAR’s best prepare to invade “The Magic Mile,” the driver of the No. 99 Aflac Ford joined local media members and fans at Geno’s Chowder House in Portsmouth,
New Hampshire Motor Speedway and Toyota Racing are offering one lucky fan the opportunity of a lifetime to become an honorary pit crew member for a day. The winning fan will have the opportunity to help the Red Horse Racing team of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series during the F.W. Webb 175 at NHMS on Saturday, Sept. 24. Red Horse Racing fields the No. 7 team of Miguel Paludo and the No. 17 of Timothy Peters.
The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup is just two weeks away from racing into New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Race fans can expect a heated battle during the SYLVANIA 300 as eight of the top-12 have visited victory lane at least once in the Sprint Cup Series at “The Magic Mile.”
Stewart-Haas Racing will have the most momentum when the series returns. Ryan Newman and Tony Stewart dominated the July race weekend, both starting and finishing first and second.
Sparks and sheet metal flew on a night where the record for cautions was tied at Richmond International Raceway. Jimmie Johnson and Kurt Busch went at one another in the latest edition of their running feud. Dale Earnhardt Jr. limped around the short track in a busted-up race car, trying to salvage his position in the Chase. Drivers wrecked one another and sought retribution in a wild, dramatic event that concluded the Sprint Cup tour's regular season.
Like most Americans, race fans will never forget where they were on September, 11, 2001. As the nation remembers the 10th anniversary of that historic day, New Hampshire Motor Speedway reflects on what turned out to be a silent race weekend that September.
The attacks came on a Tuesday, just days before the scheduled NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 300 lap event at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Starting today and running through the SYLVANIA 300 race weekend, NHMS will offer daily giveaways on Facebook. In honor of the two o’clock start time for the Sept. 25 Chase race of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, SYLVANIA’s Two O’Clock Break will be offered each day at 2 p.m. to help our fans take their mental, mid-afternoon break.
Danica Patrick thinks it would be nice if she got her NASCAR Sprint Cup career started at the Daytona 500.
The IndyCar star is moving to NASCAR full time next season and will run a limited Cup schedule in a car owned by Tony Stewart. He expects her to struggle at most of the tracks where she'll race, making a Daytona debut even more attractive to her.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to experience a chaotic day as a NASCAR pit road reporter? The New Hampshire Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities is now hosting an online auction, giving one lucky fan the opportunity to spend the entire race with ESPN reporter Jamie Little during the SYLVANIA 300 on Sunday, Sept. 25.
To commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11, NASCAR announced today a special in-race tribute to take place on Saturday, Sept. 10 during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway. Fans attending the event, ABC-TV and MRN Radio broadcasters announcing the race, and the track announcer will all go quiet for a three-lap moment of silence from laps 9 through 11 at the .75-mile oval.
The writing should have been on the wall when NASCAR postponed Sunday night's race through the Monday holiday by scheduling an unusual Tuesday morning start.
For the majority of fans in Atlanta that meant they'd have to head back to work or school or other commitments and wouldn't be able to watch the race. For those around the country, it meant the same thing.
For Clint Bowyer, Kasey Kahne and David Ragan, they might have preferred fewer people watched.
NASCAR will give the AdvoCare 500 another go Tuesday.
The remnants of Tropical Storm Lee produced heavy rain and spawned tornadoes around the Atlanta metropolitan area on Monday but the weather should yield in time for Tuesday's 11 a.m. Sprint Cup Series race (ESPN).
Thousands of NASCAR fans woke up Monday morning in the infield at Atlanta Motor Speedway, at hotels near the track, and in homes and apartments all around the Atlanta metro area, and looked at the gray, misty skies overhead.
All faced the same basic question: Should they wait out the weather or head home?
Hendrick Motorsports and driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. have agreed to a five-year contract extension that will keep Earnhardt behind the wheel of the No. 88 Chevrolets through the end of the 2017 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.
“We’re excited to have everything formalized and announced,” said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports.
NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour regulars beware, Ryan "Rocketman" Newman will once again tackle New Hampshire Motor Speedway for the New Hampshire 100 on Saturday, Sept. 24.
Newman will make his third modified start of the 2011 season and his seventh career start at "The Magic Mile." This time it will be behind the wheel of the No. 77 (not his usual No.7) Aggressive Hydraulics/ Menards Chevrolet led by crew chief Steve Lindstrum.
During the SYLVANIA 300 weekend, New Hampshire Motor Speedway, the NASCAR Hall of Fame and Tommy Baldwin Racing are offering the ultimate modified fan ticket package for just $71.
The exciting package will include a grandstand ticket for Sept. 25's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series' SYLVANIA 300, as well as a ticket for the Sept. 24 triple header. It will also include a 2011 NASCAR Hall of Fame yearbook and a 2012 inductee photo card rack from the Hall of Fame.
Speedway Motorsports Inc. announced the acquisition of a 143-acre parcel of land that will be used to greatly expand Kentucky Speedway parking and the hiring of professional parking and engineering services to best manage automotive and pedestrian traffic flows during venue event days.
The first Cup race at Kentucky was a huge deal. But as David Caraviello writes, it's too bad so many people endured so much misery trying to see it.
Two races remain before the complete 12-driver Chase field is set, seedings and all.
Here's what we know: Five drivers have clinched a Chase spot in some fashion. Kyle Busch, five-time defending champion Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth and Carl Edwards have locked up a top-10 spot. Kevin Harvick, on the strength of three 2011 victories, has clinched at least a wild card spot -- and will likely cement a top-10 berth in Sunday night's AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Kevin Harvick has clinched at least a wild-card berth in the 12-driver Chase for the Sprint Cup championship.
Harvick was not listed among drivers who had clinched after Saturday night's race at Bristol because there are still scenarios where he could fall outside of the top 10 in points. Further review Monday by NASCAR determined his three victories this season have earned him at minimum one of the two wild cards.
Brad Keselowski's phoenix-like rise from the ashes continued Saturday, with an improbable victory in the Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway -- his third win of the season and his second since breaking his left ankle Aug. 3 in a crash during testing at Road Atlanta.
Keselowski grabbed the lead on a restart with 80 laps left in the 500-lap Sprint Cup race and held on to win for the fourth time in his career. The victory all but assured Keselowski of at least a wild-card position in the upcoming Chase.
Two-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion and four-time New Hampshire Motor Speedway winner Tony Stewart “smoked” the competition today, racing go-karts at F1 Boston in preparations for the SYLVANIA 300, the second race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup on Sept. 25.
Stewart, who pilots the No. 14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, made a pit stop in Braintree, Mass. to mingle with local media members. The group then hit the thrilling track filled with sharp turns and rolling hills for some side-by-side karting action.
Danica Patrick might not even be a race car driver today, let alone have the opportunity to race in NASCAR full time in 2012, had Brooke Patrick not stepped away from the family go-kart nearly 20 years ago.
On Thursday, Patrick confirmed plans to take the next step in her career -- one which began in the Midwest, then to England as a teenager, and then a triumphant return to racing's heartland and the Indianapolis 500.
Danica Patrick is expected to announce Thursday that she'll compete full-time in the Nationwide Series for JR Motorsports in 2012. A news conference is scheduled for noon ET in Phoenix, where GoDaddy.com is located. It's also possible that she could announce her part-time Sprint Cup Series schedule with Stewart-Haas Racing at the same news conference.
Kyle Busch had his driver's license suspended for 45 days and was fined $1,000 Tuesday after he pleaded guilty to speeding.
The Joe Gibbs Racing driver, who won Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Michigan, was charged May 24 for speeding and reckless driving for driving 128 mph in a 45-mph zone in a residential area in Mooresville, N.C., according to his citation.
Country award winning duo Montgomery Gentry will kick start the SYLVANIA 300 with a performance during pre-race ceremonies at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sept. 25.
Eddie Montgomery and Troy Gentry of Montgomery Gentry exploded onto the country music scene 11 years ago, releasing more than 20 charted singles including hits like “My Town,” “Hell Yeah," “Something to be Proud Of,” “Lucky Man” and “Back When I Knew it All.”
The two drivers just inside the top 10 in points as the Chase For The Sprint Cup nears held onto their positions at Michigan International Speedway Sunday, but had very different outlooks following the Pure Michigan 400.
Part of that could be the fact that Dale Earnhardt Jr. hasn’t made the Chase the last two years while Tony Stewart has.
Michigan finally unrolled the welcome mat for Kyle Busch, the first official member of the 2011 Chase.
Busch got his first Sprint Cup Series victory at Michigan International Speedway in his 14th start at the two-mile track, holding off Jimmie Johnson in a green-white-checkered finish to win Sunday's Pure Michigan 400.
Busch beat Johnson to the finish line by .568 seconds to claim his series-best fourth victory of the season and the 23rd of his career. Busch kept Johnson winless at Michigan,
With the start of the Chase For The Sprint Cup looming, drivers already in position or scrambling to secure one of the 12 playoff spots can be forgiven for casting long glances over their shoulders.
After all, racers have long memories, and issues linger.
With the start of the 10-race playoff on the horizon, the last thing a potential title contender wants to deal with is unfinished business with a fellow competitor.
Quebec native Maryeve Dufault plans on becoming the first Canadian woman to make a Nationwide Series race when she straps on her helmet at her hometown track in this weekend's NAPA Auto Parts 200 at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
Dufault has been entered in the No. 81 Dodge owned by Pat MacDonald, with sponsorship from the Quebec Dodge Dealers.
Marcos Ambrose's happiness bubbled over Monday afternoon to the point where he began vigorously chasing various employees of Richard Petty Motorsports and attempting to spray them with a bit of the bubbly in Victory Lane at Watkins Glen International.
For a driver and company whose intertwined futures were so uncertain just one year ago, it was indeed a day to call for champagne all the way around.
After a flirtation that lasted months with Joe Gibbs Racing, Carl Edwards has decided to remain at Roush Fenway Racing beyond the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.
The team announced Thursday morning that it had re-signed the 31-year-old driver to a “multi-year agreement starting in 2012.”
NASCAR announced today the No. 7 team that competes in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour has been penalized as a result of rules violations committed Saturday, July 16 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, N.H.
The team was found to be in violation of Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4-I (car, car parts, components and/or equipment used do not conform to NASCAR rules); and 20D-5.9P (the intake manifold ports did not completely seal to the cylinder head ports.
Former Formula One champion Jacques Villeneuve, who finished third in the Nationwide Series race at Road America and will return to the Penske Racing seat next month at Montreal, is continuing his quest to find a NASCAR ride.
Villeneuve spent Saturday with the Penske team at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, making the four-hour drive from his Canadian home.
For all the angst and despair brought on by the two-by-two racing that has emerged at Daytona and Talladega, one thing is clear.
The two tracks have produced the most exciting, most intense races in the first half of the 2011 season.
The two tracks have wowed fans with unimagined numbers in terms of lead changes and leaders, and when it was over, two first-time winners – Trevor Bayne and David Ragan – graced victory lane at Daytona.
Ryan Newman was walking, or rather driving, the proverbial fine line at a high rate of speed during the final laps of Sunday's Lenox Industrial Tools 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
As the race leader, he stood poised to boost his position for the entire season into another stratosphere, virtually locking himself into one of the 12 spots for the upcoming Chase that determines NASCAR's Cup champion.
So, you’re zipping along in heavy traffic and the check engine light comes on and then a bunch of other indicator lights kick in, lighting up the dashboard in a fireworks-like display.
Now you’re NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon and that zipping along is at about 170 miles an hour, in serious want-to-kick-your-butt traffic at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on a speedy Sunday afternoon drive.
Ryan Newman only saw the view from the front at New Hampshire Motor Speedway this weekend, capturing the checkered flag in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series LENOX Industrial Tools 301 and the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour F.W. Webb 100.
Behind the wheel of his No. 39 U.S. Army Chevrolet, it was a history making day for Newman; no NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver has started and won from the pole position in two races on the same weekend at NHMS.
Sprint announced today the biggest promotion in its history as the title sponsor of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: the Sprint Summer Showdown presented by HTC EVO 3D. The six-consecutive-race series runs from Indianapolis on July 31 to Atlanta on Sept. 4 and puts a $3 million purse on the line for a driver, a driver’s charity and one lucky race fan.
It’s the day NASCAR fans have been waiting for all year long, the Sprint Cup Series stars will race their way around New Hampshire Motor Speedway during the LENOX Industrial Tools 301.
The flag said it all when Kyle Busch took his victory lap around New Hampshire Motor Speedway today. Holding a flag emblazoned with the number 100, Busch celebrated becoming the third driver to win 100 NASCAR national series races. He notched this historic win at the New England 200.
The 26-year-old Las Vegas, Nev. native continues to set records. Busch also captured his 49th NASCAR Nationwide Series win today.
He had to earn this one. The “Rocket Man” continued his front-running weekend by capturing the checkered flag in the F.W. Webb 100 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
His No. 7 Aggressive Hydraulics/Menards car was simply too strong in the straights for Newman to be denied the victory in an exciting modified battle.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway officials are anticipating a near capacity crowd for Sunday’s LENOX Industrial Tools 301. As of 11 a.m. Saturday, approximately 2,000 tickets remained for Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event. Track officials will hold a limited number of tickets for Sunday morning walk-up sales.
Please plan travel to the track accordingly and aim to arrive early.
Brad Keselowski grabbed the pole for the NASCAR Nationwide Series New England 200 this afternoon at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Behind the wheel of his No. 22 Ruby Tuesday Dodge, Keselowski turned a lap of 129.384 mph in just 29.438 seconds. This is his second pole in four races at “The Magic Mile.”
It is easily the most overlooked event of every New Hampshire Motor Speedway race weekend.
It doesn't have the glitz of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the star power of the Nationwide Series or the cache of the Whelen Modified Tour. But the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East served notice yet again on Friday evening here at New Hampshire that the division is as entertaining as any competing during the two NASCAR weekends every year.
Max Gresham's victory in the New England 125 had a little bit of everything.
Officials at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and WOKQ announced that Big Machine recording group Edens Edge will perform the national anthem at tomorrow’s LENOX Industrial Tools 301.
The country music trio features Hannah Blaylock as the lead vocalist, Dean Berner on harmony vocals, guitar, dobro and Cherrill Green on harmony vocals, mandolin, banjo, and guitar. The group composes a unique musical blend deeply rooted in country and bluegrass.
Max Gresham started his day out front and ended it in the same position, capturing the checkered flag at the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East’s New England 125 event.
Behind the wheel of the No. 18 World Crown 300 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing the 18-year old from Griffin, Ga., scored his second win of the 2011 season, fighting his way from the back to the front because of a pit stop gaffe.
Ryan Newman rocketed past the field, setting a new track record as he captured the pole position for Sunday’s LENOX Industrial Tools 301.
Behind the wheel of the No. 39 U.S. Army Chevrolet, Newman turned a lap of 135.232 mph in just over 28 seconds, shattering Brad Keselowski’s 2010 NHMS track record.
In conjunction with New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s race weekend, an evening meal with NASCAR Sprint Cup champion driver Tony Stewart was auctioned off with proceeds going to the N.H. chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities benefitting local kids in need.
The top-two bidders enjoyed a spectacular five-course dinner with lobster tails, filet mignon, fresh asparagus and some very funny and personal stories from Stewart. The top bidders were Francine Slesinski and her mother Jeannine Laroche (left) and (right) Eugene and Eileen Beckman.
NASCAR star Dale Earnhardt, Jr. is anticipating his luck turns around during Sunday’s LENOX Industrial Tools 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
The driver of the No. 88 National Guard/AMP Energy Chevrolet is in need of a good finish. After a string of top-10 finishes Jr.’s last four races have been less than stellar including a 41st, 19th and 30th.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway is inviting all race fans to stop by the new Lite Lobster Lounge located in the display area. The speedway unveiled the new fan amenity Thursday night during FanFest.
Thanks to Miller Lite, this New England themed watering hole will feature every New Englanders favorite food including; lobster, clam chowder, hamburgers, chicken and much more. Fans can also enjoy a cool beverage all in a family fun atmosphere.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series star Ryan Newman scored his third straight pole position at New Hampshire Motor Speedway today for Saturday's NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour F.W. Webb 100.
"Rocket Man" Ryan Newman will once again pilot the No. 7 Chevrolet, owned by New England native Kevin "Bono" Manion and sponsored by Aggressive Hydraulics/Menards.
Max Gresham was fast when it counted today at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. The Griffin Ga., native will start from the pole position in tomorrow’s NASCAR K&N Pro Series East New England 125.
This is Gresham’s third pole of the 2011 season in NASCAR’s developmental series. This is also his third start at “The Magic Mile.” Gresham’s best finish at NHMS came in 2009 where he finished ninth.
XGames legend, American Rally driver and now NASCAR racer Travis Pastrana will race in the 55th annual NASCAR K&N Pro Series East New England 125 race on Friday.
Known for wowing crowds in motocross, Pastrana will pilot the No. 99 Boost Mobile Toyota for Pastrana-Waltrip Racing this weekend. He made his NASCAR debut in the 2011 NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown, where he finished sixth. Pastrana also competed at Richmond International Raceway in the K&N Pro Series East where he finished 33rd.
It was out with the old and in with the new today at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, as the new state-of-the-art Panasonic scoreboard was officially unveiled.
Race fans joined former NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver and ESPN analyst Ricky Craven, NHMS executive vice president and general manager Jerry Gappens and K&N Pro Series East driver Eddie MacDonald, who waved the green flag to launch the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 weekend.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers may not hit the track until tomorrow, but today the off-track action at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is jam-packed with excitement.
At 10:30 a.m., the new state-of-the-art Panasonic scoreboard will be unveiled for the first time with three 32-foot-by-18-foot Panasonic TV screens. The screens provide an impressive view of all the race action and instant replays.
Today, the New Hampshire Lottery and New Hampshire Motor Speedway are pleased to announce that the New Hampshire Lottery is now an official partner of the New Hampshire Motor Speedway throughout the 2011 season. Starting this week, the Lottery and the Speedway will be working together to rev up fans with unique promotions, special discounts and brand new offers.
When the green flag drops at New Hampshire Motor Speedway for the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 on Sunday, there is a good chance a fresh face will visit Victory Lane.
“The Magic Mile” boasts a statistic unlike any track: there have been six different winners in the past six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway boasts a statistic that may breed some major Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup implications. That stat: There have been six different winners in the past six races. New Hampshire’s reputation as a competitively balanced track grew with each passing NASCAR Nationwide Series race at NHMS – there were 23 different winners in the first 23 races. That streak was broken last year when Kyle Busch finally repeated.
The Granite State is officially revved up for NASCAR in New England, thanks to New Hampshire Motor Speedway executive vice president and general manager Jerry Gappens and N.H. Governor John Lynch.
The two participated in an R/C car challenge in front of the N.H. State House this afternoon, racing on an oval track to kickoff race week.
Piloting the No. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet it took a mixture of skill and sheer determination for Governor John Lynch to narrowly win the first ever R/C challenge against Gappens.
Why would anyone ever bet against NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Kyle Busch? Even the most ardent fans of other drivers have to admit Busch is looking like a serious contender for unseating Jimmie Johnson’s historic run of Championship seasons.
Busch dominated the inaugural race at Kentucky Speedway this weekend, winning the Quaker State 400 the old fashioned way: he got out front early and simply stayed there.
Race week at New Hampshire Motor Speedway has finally arrived, which means NASCAR is making its way to New England.
Not only will there be plenty of on-track action, the excitement off-track continues from dusk until dawn.
Thursday, race fans can get their first taste of the action with the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East practice and qualifying for the New England 125 and F.W. Webb 100.
It was shortly before 11 p.m. local time Saturday when the two images that will come to define this inaugural Sprint Cup weekend at Kentucky Speedway began to intersect. Kyle Busch stood in a Victory Lane styled after that from a horse-racing oval, giving television interviews amid the litter of damp confetti and empty energy drink cans. A few hundred feet away, a line of still red taillights snaked out of the tunnel and onto Speedway Boulevard, as spectators began the slow crawl into the traffic gridlock.
The first of many campers arrived at 5 a.m. Saturday morning, making New Hampshire Motor Speedway their home for more than a week and four days of non-stop racing action.
Race fans are not the only ones gearing up for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series LENOX Industrial Tools 301 weekend, the NHMS maintenance team continued to prepare the speedway’s 1,100 acres of property for the event.
Track Facts LENOX Industrial Tools 301(NSCS)
Qualifying for this event is scheduled for Friday, July 15, at 3:10 p.m. (ET) and will be televised live on SPEED Channel beginning at 3:00 p.m. (EDT). The better of two laps will determine a driver’s official qualifying speed for the LENOX Industrial Tools 301.
Two-time New Hampshire Motor Speedway winner Clint Bowyer will make his 200th Sprint Cup start when NASCAR’s elite series returns to New England next weekend.
Behind the wheel of the No. 07 Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing, Bowyer got his elusive first NASCAR Sprint Cup win in 2007 when the series raced into “The Magic Mile” for the first race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. He dominated the 300-lap event, leading 222 laps for an easy win.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway has started getting the pace cars on the track to warm them up and figure out which one will run for the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 on July 17. Unfortunately, the track has had trouble getting the cars up to speed, as there seems to be a hindrance that is getting in their way.
To help analyze how each car is running, a NHMS staff member filmed the pace car session and this video highlights the main issues with the cars. Hopefully the issue will be resolved by next weekend's races.
Draw the Line, an Aerosmith tribute, band will highlight the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 pre-race concert at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sunday, July 17.
Hailing from Boston, Mass., Draw the Line is the only endorsed Aerosmith tribute band worldwide. The group boasts accolades from Aerosmith front man Steven Tyler, drummer Joey Kramer as well as family and friends of the legendary New England rock group.
It sounds like the NFL players and owners are finally finding a way to preserve the 2011 football season. After about 115 days of accusations, lawsuits, counterclaims and lots of hyperbole regarding the end of football as we knew and enjoyed it, both sides are talking and both sides are sounding upbeat.
The latest media reports indicate a deal may be done within the next few days. One thing that hasn't been a priority in the battle over billions is the most important part of any professional sport: the fans.
The New Hampshire Motor Speedway has issued a wildlife warning for the upcoming LENOX Industrial Tools 301 NASCAR weekend. Loudon residents have reported seeing a strange creature in the woods and a NHMS staff member was fortunate enough to have captured some video of the animal when it was recently seen on property.
Please watch this video to get a better idea of the wildlife you need to keep an eye for during the upcoming race week.
For the first time in their racing careers, one of the Cope Twins is going to attempt to race "solo" in one of NASCAR's top three series. Without her sister Amber, Angela Cope plans to compete in the Nationwide Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Saturday, July 16. Amber will be in attendance, however, on the headset helping guide Angela instead of behind the wheel herself.
By competing in a Camping World Truck Series race at Martinsville in October, the duet rewrote NASCAR'shistory books last year by becoming the first twins to ever race against each other in one of NASCAR's top three divisions.
When the stars of NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series race into New Hampshire Motor Speedway next weekend there is a good chance they may not just visit Victory Lane during the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 on Sunday.
The NASCAR Nationwide Series New England 200 on Saturday, July 16, will feature some of NASCAR’s best. Sprint Cup Series drivers scheduled to pull double duty include; Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Kevin Harvick, Carl Edwards and Kasey Kahne.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway Executive VP/General Manager Jerry Gappens recently caught up with Rutledge Wood on NASCAR.com. With the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 only a week and a half away, Gappens talked about the unique New England atmosphere the speedway offers to the NASCAR community.
Longtime LENOX® Industrial Tools employee Tom Joseph, along with his wife and three sons, will serve as Grand Marshals for the 2011 LENOX Industrial Tools 301 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sunday, July 17. The Josephs, who lost their home in the tornadoes that tore through New England last month, will represent the many families whose homes were damaged or destroyed as a result of the June storms.
As the country celebrates Independence Day, New Hampshire Motor Speedway officials announced today that the speedway will host a unique service dedicating a grandstand seat to the thousands of Americans who are or were a prisoner of war and for those who are missing in action during the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 pre-race ceremonies on Sunday, July 17.
The POW/MIA empty chair and plaque will be located in “The Magic Mile” main grandstand area, a special reminder of those who serve and protect America. The POW/MIA chair will be part of several special pre-race activities and dedications.
The Coke Zero 400 featured plenty of two-car tandem racing and a feel-good story in winner David Ragan.
But several drivers left Daytona disappointed after a pair of late multicar wrecks overshadowed an otherwise tame race.
Here’s a look at the winners and losers:
David Ragan has been trying to let it go since February.
So when leading at Daytona with five miles to go -- again -- the last thing Ragan wanted to hear on his radio was "don't forget to stay in your lane until you cross the start/finish line."
"I was on Matt Kenseth's radio on that last restart and his spotter mentioned it," Ragan said.
Joey Logano didn't lead Friday night's Subway Jalapeno 250 until the final half mile, but that was all the 21-year-old driver of the No. 20 Toyota needed to notch his first victory at Daytona International Speedway.
As the action in Turn 4 on the final lap unfolded behind him, Logano surged into the lead and held off a charge from Jason Leffler to win his first Nationwide Series race of the season and the ninth of his career.
Twenty-year-old Trevor Bayne beat the best stock-car drivers in the world the last time he was at Daytona International Speedway. He then promptly proceeded to stump the best doctors in the world.
Bayne returns to the historic Daytona tri-oval this weekend to race in Saturday night's Coke Zero 400 hoping to do everything possible to repeat the former feat and then avoid the latter.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway winner and New England native Joey Logano will highlight this year's FanFest with an autograph session for fans on Thursday, July 14 beginning at 8:30 p.m.
Driving the No. 20 Home Depot Toyota, Logano became the youngest winner in the history of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at just 19 years old, when he captured his first checkered flag in 2009 at "The Magic Mile."
As the NASCAR world prepares to celebrate Independence Day weekend at Daytona, New Hampshire Motor Speedway has to tip our hats to Dale Earnhardt Jr. In a recent interview about the upcoming Coke Zero 400, Dale sounded off about what he’s really looking forward to this July.
According to a report in Yahoo sports, here is what Earnhardt Jr. said when asked if he was excited to return to Daytona, where he has enjoyed success in recent years:
Rachel Gilbert of Laconia, N.H., is continuing her life in the fast lane at New Hampshire Motor Speedway by serving as Grand Marshal for the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour F.W. Webb 100 on Saturday, July 16.
Gilbert made national headlines when she celebrated her centennial birthday at "The Magic Mile" in April by driving the track's Toyota Camry pace car around the 1.058 mile oval.
Before Dale Earnhardt Jr. could race again at Daytona International Speedway after his father died there 10 years ago, he had to check the place out, see if he'd be overwhelmed, see if his cold memories there would consume him.
The week before NASCAR returned to Daytona for the first time after the 2001 Daytona 500, he took some friends there, in part to show them the place but also to see how he felt. Like a man going ice fishing who isn't sure if the ice is thick enough to hold him, he stepped gingerly onto the grounds.
To help race fans get revved up for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series' LENOX Industrial Tools 301, New Hampshire Motor Speedway will give away exciting prizes each day at 3:01 p.m. in preparation for the 301 lap event on July 17.
Beginning Friday, July 1, fans can participate in several online promotions through Facebook and Twitter. Prizes will include a fan wagon, wristbands for a driver autograph session, Richard Petty Driving Experience passes, NHMS fan packs and much more.
After years of watching the excitement of NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour events on the 1.058-mile oval at New Hampshire Motor Speedway TV analyst Andy Petree has decided that he'd like to see what it looks like from behind the wheel.
Petree, a former Sprint Cup Series championship crew chief, team owner, driver and current ESPN motorsports analyst, will enter the Whelen Modified Tour F.W. Webb 100 which is scheduled for July 16 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
There are only four days left to bid on the ultimate dinner with NASCAR driver Tony Stewart on Thursday, July 14, at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
The New Hampshire chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities will give the two highest bidders and their guests a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to dine with four-time “Magic Mile” winner and two-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Tony Stewart, in NHMS’ Chairman and CEO Bruton Smith’s suite.
Tony Stewart pretty much dared any Sprint Cup driver to block him with his antics on and off the race track Sunday at Infineon Raceway.
Stewart dumped Brian Vickers for blocking him during the race and said afterward that even if drivers wreck him in retaliation, as Vickers did, those that block him will pay the price.
Race fans can take a parade lap around New Hampshire Motor Speedway with their favorite NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver through the New Hampshire Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities Ride of a Lifetime Auction beginning today.
Fans can bid on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to stand inches away from drivers like Carl Edwards, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Tony Stewart during the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 pre-race ceremonies on Sunday, July 17.
On a sun-splashed day in the California wine country, Kurt Busch left no doubt about his ability to win on a road course at Infineon Raceway.
As dominant as the Penske Racing driver was in leading 76 of 110 laps, it’s difficult to believe that it took him 15 seasons to get his first victory on a serpentine course.
“It was one of those unbelievable days where having a game plan going in, we weren’t questioning it, it was just old school on how we were going to make it on two [pit] stops,” Busch said. “
New England's own Joey Logano is offering an exclusive New Hampshire Motor Speedway ticket package for die-hard race fans during the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 weekend July 14-17. This exclusive offer is limited to only 100 tickets.
Logano, who pilots the No. 20 Home Depot Toyota, became the youngest driver to ever win a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event in 2009 at "The Magic Mile."
If management of the team currently known as Red Bull Racing is unsuccessful in its bid to find new ownership to keep the Sprint Cup organization alive after this season, don't expect Toyota to scour the garage area looking to add to its fleet.
Red Bull's intention to withdraw from NASCAR after this season has left team general manager and vice president Jay Frye searching for investors to keep the 200-employee operation afloat.
The 2011 Daytona 500 Champion Trevor Bayne is set to be this year's key-note speaker at the 19th annual New Hampshire Motor Speedway Governors Breakfast on Friday, July 15.
Driver of the No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, Bayne launched his way into stardom by winning this year's Daytona 500. The 20 year old also drives part-time for the veteran Sprint Cup Series team Wood Brothers Racing.
When NASCAR races into New Hampshire Motor Speedway fans can bet Kyle Busch will be a factor to capture at least one checkered flag during the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 weekend, July 15-17.
In just seven years of racing on "The Magic Mile," Busch has claimed five wins, two of which came last year. He became the first ever repeat winner in the NASCAR Nationwide Series at NHMS in 23 races.
LENOX®, a leading manufacturer of premium power tool accessories, hand tools, torches, solder and band saw blades, will dedicate the 2011 LENOX Industrial Tools 301 race to helping the communities affected by the tornados that tore through New England in early June. To kick off the NASCAR race on July 17, LENOX and its employees will be presenting a check to the Pioneer Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross to support its tornado relief efforts.
Just like the way he seemed to sneak up on everyone on Sunday, Denny Hamlin wants to make sure nobody forgets his name when it comes around to discussing championship contenders.
"I feel like over the last six to seven weeks, we've been as good as anyone," Hamlin said. "... One win's not going to put you in [the Chase], necessarily. It might if you're still high up in points. But we know two wins pretty much puts you in.
Ashley Grady may have missed out on one of the biggest days of her life when she was turned away from the Memorial High School graduation last week, but New Hampshire Motor Speedway has since offered her the chance of a lifetime.
On July 17, Grady will walk across the finish line main stage before the start of the Sprint Cup Series LENOX Industrial Tools 301 NASCAR race, an event that draws about 100,000 spectators from across the country.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway executive vice president and general manager Jerry Gappens joined the Granite State’s Congressional Delegation today hosting the second consecutive Experience New Hampshire day in Washington D.C.
Gappens also hosted the Experience New Hampshire reception with Senator Jeanne Shaheen, gearing up the nation’s capitol for the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 on Sunday, July 17.
Three-time New Hampshire Motor Speedway winner Ryan Newman will go for his third straight NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour victory during the F.W. Webb 100 on Saturday, July 16.
The Sprint Cup Series star swept both of the mighty modified events at “The Magic Mile” in 2010, capturing the pole and checkered flag.
“Rocket Man” Ryan Newman will once again pilot the No. 7 Chevrolet, owned by New England native Kevin “Bono” Manion and sponsored by Aggressive Hydraulics/Menards.
It will be both an emotional and celebratory feel for U.S. Army driver Ryan Newman at this weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway.
Newman's No. 39 Chevrolet will pay tribute to the U.S. Army's 236th birthday and will honor Walter "Bud" Moore, recent NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee and decorated World War II veteran.
NASCAR and INDYCAR zoomed through historical Boston Common today, revving up race fans for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series LENOX Industrial Tools 301 on July 17 and the IZOD IndyCar Series MoveThatBlock.com INDY® 225 on Aug 14., at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Juan Pablo Montoya and IZOD IndyCar Series reigning champion Dario Franchitti shook the windows on Beacon Street in Boston, Mass., by racing their cars through Boston Common during the heat of lunch hour.
Anybody got a gallon of gas for Junior? I just got back from Charlotte and watching one of the most dramatic Coca-Cola 600 finishes in history. The highs and lows of NASCAR Sprint Cup race fans could be felt in that final mile of the race. The crowd roared its approval when one of the most popular drivers on the circuit was literally seconds from snapping a long winless streak. In this case, risk was not rewarded and the team’s estimates about fuel mileage were just short. Hopes were dashed in turn four when Junior fell off the pace and the race victory went to Kevin Harvick, who is enjoying a solid season of good luck and great finishes.
Clint Bowyer held off fast-closing J.J. Yeley to win the seventh annual Prelude to the Dream on Wednesday night at Eldora Speedway.
Bowyer started from the pole and led wire-to-wire in the 30-lap main event after winning the first of four heat races in the same fashion. Yeley was closing fast at the end and finished second, followed by Aric Almirola, Kyle Busch and Justin Allgaier.
Respect. That’s what Jimmie Johnson earned last year with his wire-to-wire win in the Prelude to the Dream, Tony Stewart’s annual star-studded charity race at Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio.
Johnson will defend his victory in Wednesday’s Prelude, the seventh since Stewart launched the charity race in 2005. The event will be televised live on HBO Pay-Per-View at 8 p.m. ET.
Beginning in 2012, Farmers Insurance will be the majority sponsor of the No. 5 Chevrolet fielded by Hendrick Motorsports and driven by 11-time Sprint Cup Series race winner Kasey Kahne.
Covering the 2012-2014 racing seasons, the agreement secures primary paint schemes for Farmers Insurance in 22 Cup Series events annually and prominent brand placement in all non-primary races. A new design will be unveiled at a later date.
If there is one thing that Jeff Gordon knows, it's that he's running out of time to make certain he's part of the 2011 Chase.
So while he was pleased with his fourth-place finish in Sunday's STP 400 at Kansas Speedway, and he realizes the value of the one win he already owns this season, he's hardly satisfied. He is, on the other hand, no doubt thankful for the wild-card element that was added to the Chase qualifying format this season.
NASCAR has fined owner Richard Childress $150,000 and placed him on NASCAR probation until Dec. 31 for violating Section 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing – involved in an altercation in the garage area) of the 2011 NASCAR rule book. The violation occurred following the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race June 4 at Kansas Speedway.
COMMENTARY: NASCAR needs to be consistent with the way it uses late-race caution flags.
And as long as it consistently officiates the final laps like it did Sunday night in the Coca-Cola 600, then it is giving drivers and fans the finish they deserve.
Sometimes an incident that might result in an automatic caution during the middle part of a race might not bring a yellow flag at the end. And that’s OK.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway is offering an exciting prize for two lucky fans that correctly pick the winner of this weekend’s STP 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kansas Motor Speedway.
Today through Sunday at 1 p.m., fans can enter on Facebook or Twitter to win two tickets to WWE LiveTour in Lowell, Mass., on Friday, June 17.
Users will need to come up with a pro-wrestler name and signature move for the driver they pick to win. Participants can enter on either Facebook or Twitter.
Welcome to NASCAR, Steve Herbst. Now get ready to negotiate.
This month, Herbst joined NASCAR as vice president of broadcasting, a role that puts him in line to spend the next 18 to 24 months working to secure the sport’s next TV contract. He’ll report to Paul Brooks, the president of NASCAR Media Group and lead executive in NASCAR’s negotiations.
NASCAR signed its current $4.5 billion contract with Fox, ESPN and Turner Sports in 2005.
Big Machine Records sensation Steel Magnolia will headline New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s LENOX Industrial Tools 301 FanFest, the ultimate fan party, on Thursday, July 14.
Meghan Linsey and Joshua Scott Jones of Steel Magnolia exploded onto the country music scene after winning season two of CMT's 'Can You Duet' competition. The duo signed a record deal in 2009 with Big Machine Records and released their first single, “Keep on Lovin’ You,” which became the fastest-rising single by a male/female duo in country music history.
Jamie McMurray will get escorted into his hometown of Joplin, Mo., Thursday by the mayor and the chief of police.
But it won't exactly be a hero's return or any kind of a joyful event for McMurray -- a standout Sprint Cup driver and winner of the 2010 Daytona 500.
Joplin was probably best known as McMurray's hometown until a twister that to date accounts for around 140 lives lost struck on May 22.
The Indianapolis 500, by far the biggest race of the IndyCar Series season and faced with the prospect of having Danica Patrick in the race for perhaps the final time with her possible move to NASCAR, needed to have a dramatic race Sunday.
It got it.
It was an odd sight, but one that made Richard Childress smile.
In the ultimate display of teamwork, as Kevin Harvick attempted to save gas for the final laps of Sunday's Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Childress looked out onto the 1.5-mile track and saw three of his Richard Childress Racing cars lined up bumper-to-bumper during the caution period that preceded the final restart. Harvick teammates Paul Menard and Jeff Burton were pushing Harvick from behind in an effort to help Harvick save fuel in his No. 29 Chevrolet.
Tony Stewart doesn’t know whether Danica Patrick plans to switch to NASCAR full time next year, but he says he is interested in possibly signing her for his Stewart-Haas Racing team if she wants to jump to NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series.
Stewart, a two-time Cup champion and former IndyCar champion, has been one of Patrick’s go-to drivers as far as advice with her NASCAR experiment.
Daytona 500 winner Trevor Bayne will sit out for a fifth consecutive week as he continues to recover from fatigue and blurred vision caused by an unexplained illness.
Roush Fenway Racing termed the decision “precautionary” and plans for Bayne to return next week for the Nationwide Series race at Chicagoland Speedway.
Bayne was scheduled to drive in the Top Gear 300 Nationwide Series event on Saturday and the Coca-Cola 600 Sprint Cup event on Sunday at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Kyle Busch, who was ticketed for driving a sports car 128 mph in a 45-mph zone Tuesday afternoon, could find out as early as July 20 whether he will have his North Carolina driver’s license suspended for 60 days.
The Joe Gibbs Racing driver faces charges of speeding and reckless driving, and if he is convicted on both charges, he could have his license revoked for 60 days, according to the North Carolina driver’s manual. He is scheduled to appear in Iredell County Court in Statesville on July 20.
Carl Edwards' No. 99 crew didn't win Thursday's Sprint Pit Crew Challenge -- they waited until it really counted.
Flawless work during mandatory four-tire pit stops before the final 10-lap shootout in Saturday night's Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway got Edwards off pit road first, ahead of Kyle Busch. That proved decisive in Edwards' first All-Star win as he became the eighth different winner of the event in the past eight years.
How calm, cool and collected was David Pearson behind the wheel of a race car?
“If you recall, he had a cigarette lighter in his car,” says Len Wood, co-owner of Wood Brothers Racing. “They tell tales of him lighting a cigarette going down the backstretch [and] passing Buddy Baker. While Buddy’s fighting his car for all he’s worth.”
For the first time since, well, he’s been a Sprint Cup driver, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is not in the Sprint All-Star Race.
As a rookie in 2000, he qualified with a win at Texas Motor Speedway in April, just over a month before the all-star race. Then he won the all-star race – the first rookie to win it – to give him a 10-year exemption into the annual event.
Matt Kenseth came late to the party and took home the prize -- thanks to a spur-of-the-moment decision on pit road.
A two-tire call late in Sunday's FedEx 400 at Dover International Speedway put Kenseth on the front row for a restart on Lap 367 of 400, and that was all Kenseth needed to secure his second Sprint Cup Series victory of the season and the 20th of his career.
Consider it the ultimate irony.
In October of 2008, when Regan Smith thought he had recorded the first Sprint Cup victory of his career at Talladega, it was Tony Stewart who helped take it away from him. Last Saturday night, when Smith finally did capture that elusive first win more than two years and eight months later, Stewart had a hand in helping him do it.
April 15 – July 1
"Dinner with Tony" Online Auction
Bid on the ultimate fan experience with Tony "Smoke" Stewart! Enjoy dinner with a two-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion, one of New England's best loved racing personalities Greg Kretschmar and long-time television broadcaster and racing magazine writer Dick Berggren.
As if there wasn't already ample evidence piling up that this year may very well be different for Dale Earnhardt Jr., there was last Saturday's Showtime Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.
Oh, part of what transpired was a rerun of similar Earnhardt implosions in recent years. But what happened in the immediate aftermath of a costly Earnhardt mistake getting onto pit road late in the race was different indeed.
Jimmie Johnson, Nascar's Sprint Cup Series champion every year since 2006, isn't particularly charismatic. But he's great at what he does. He's also appealing to many fans because he seems to be just like them--the guy next door who just happens to double as the best driver on the Nascar circuit. That's among the reasons why Johnson rates as America's most influential athlete this year.
After a prolonged slump, "Nascar has had a bit of resurgence, people are becoming more aware of the drivers this year," says Gerry Philpott, CEO of Encino, Calf.-based E-Poll Market Research, which co-conducted the poll of influential athletes our list is based on.
Kevin Harvick vs. Kyle Busch is more than a feud of the week. It could be the feud of the year.
Harvick and Busch, who have clashed before, are drivers who don’t easily forget. And they expect to not only battle for wins and the championship in the Sprint Cup Series but also will be racing each other for victories in the Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series events as well.
Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch both were placed on probation for five weeks and fined $25,000 Tuesday for their actions Saturday night following the Sprint Cup race at Darlington Raceway, NASCAR officials confirmed.
Harvick tweeted about the penalties Tuesday morning and NASCAR officials later confirmed that both drivers had been issued the same penalties.
Nearly three years after a NASCAR ruling denied him his first Sprint Cup victory, Regan Smith finally got the elusive win.
After staying out on old tires, Smith held off Carl Edwards to win Saturday night's Showtime Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway in a dramatic green-white-checkered-flag finish.
1. Denny Hamlin was the runner-up last week at Richmond, and he's the defending champion of this weekend's event at Darlington. Is it too soon to say he's thrusting himself back into the championship picture?
Dave Rodman: It's too soon only because the points don't indicate it on paper. But I think I'm liking this point system more and more every week we get into it.
For many of the drivers, crewmen and series officials who work in NASCAR, Darlington Raceway is a home game. Getting to the race track requires not flights and layovers, but rather a leisurely drive from the suburbs north of Charlotte, through the speed-trap town of McBee, and down into the agricultural heart of South Carolina. It's a three-hour drive back through time, from the modern hub of steel and glass shop complexes that populate the sport today, to a timeless facility that was opened in 1950 and in some ways looks now exactly as it did then.
When Ryan Newman and Juan Pablo Montoya tangled at Richmond International Raceway Saturday night, with Montoya apparently wrecking Newman intentionally, it wasn’t the first time the two fiery drivers have locked horns or had issues with each other.
When Newman was hit by Denny Hamlin at Talladega a few weeks ago, he ran into Montoya, damaging Montoya’s car much worse than his own.
NASCAR officials meet with each of its four participating car manufacturers periodically, but its meeting Tuesday at the Westin Hotel in Detroit will be different.
It will have representatives of all four manufacturers – General Motors, Ford, Toyota and Dodge – all in the same room.
The meeting will be much like the town hall meetings NASCAR has had with its race teams in recent years.
If there's one thing Denny Hamlin could change, he maybe wouldn't have been so forthcoming about Richmond International Racing in all those Joe Gibbs Racing team meetings.
But holding out information about his home track would make Hamlin a bad teammate, so he shared everything he knew.
Then Kyle Busch used those tips to beat his teammate Saturday night at Richmond, denying Hamlin a weekend sweep at his home track.
Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Joey Logano and Denny Hamlin said rumors of a potential Joe Gibbs Racing crew-chief swap for them are not true.
Both drivers, speaking Thursday before the Denny Hamlin Foundation Short-Track Showdown at Richmond International Raceway, virtually laughed when asked about the rumors.
Hamlin said he talked to team owner Joe Gibbs about the rumors Wednesday. Hamlin has worked with crew chief Mike Ford for his entire Sprint Cup Series career, which started with a handful of races in 2005.
Roush Fenway Racing’s Trevor Bayne will miss the NASCAR Nationwide Series Bubba Burgers 250 on Friday at Richmond International Raceway as he has been hospitalized to undergo tests for symptoms, including fatigue and nausea, thought to be related to the insect bite suffered earlier this month, according to a Roush Fenway Racing spokesman.
Bayne is fifth in the Nationwide Series standings. His replacement will be from the Roush Fenway Racing stable.
The setting will be the same, but the scene will be very different the next time NASCAR's premier series arrives at Richmond International Raceway following this weekend's event. That early September date will carry with it the usual sticky, final vestiges of a long summer in the South, making everyone thankful for whomever came up with the idea of running under the lights. And the focus will be less on the race itself and more on the drama surrounding it.
Each week, SceneDaily’s Kenny Bruce takes a look at the lighter side of racing with his popular Top 10 list.
Top 10 signs NASCAR is in charge of the Royal Wedding:
10. Westminster Abbey renamed Westminster International Speedway.
Rachel Gilbert of Laconia, N.H. proved that the need for speed can hit at any age, by taking a spin around New Hampshire Motor Speedway, in the tracks pace car, to celebrate her 100th birthday.
Gilbert’s centennial celebration got off to a flying start today, when she hopped in a Toyota Camry pace car, similar to the one that will set the field for the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on July 17.
Is it too early to tell? Or have enough 2011 races been run in the Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series to determine whether or not this new points system is working as intended?
With the Sprint Cup Series taking Easter weekend off, it was time for the two junior national touring series to shine last weekend at Nashville Superspeedway.
NASCAR’s new points system emphasizes winning by placing two wild cards in the Chase For The Sprint Cup based on wins, but in the overall standings, it appears that winning doesn’t mean as much as it did a year ago under the old points system.
And like under the old system, consistency still means more than winning while poor finishes seem to be more difficult to overcome than in the past.
The snow and rain didn’t stop New Hampshire Motor Speedway fans from enjoying all the activities at FANtasy Drive 2 today, marking the official start of the 2011 season.
The green flag dropped on the season of speed at 9 a.m., when fans hit the track for three laps around “The Magic Mile,” in their personal vehicles.
Kasey Kahne had minor surgery to his right knee Monday to repair a torn meniscus and will not need a backup driver next weekend for the Sprint Cup race at Richmond International Raceway.
The Red Bull Racing driver had surgery on both knees in the offseason to repair a condition known as “plica syndrome,” the result of a buildup of tissue in the knees.
Kahne tweeted about the surgery Thursday night and said he feels fine.
In three short days, Johnny Sauter had two big reasons to celebrate.
The first came April 2 when he rallied past the always-stout Kyle Busch to win the Camping World Truck Series Kroger 250 at Martinsville Speedway.
Sauter's second – and even bigger – reason to rejoice followed on April 4 when the ThorSport Racing driver and his wife, Cortney, welcomed their second child, daughter Paige, into the world.
A number of fan-friendly events should help set the stage for one of sports' most exciting all-star events.
The 2011 NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race is set for Saturday, May 21 at Charlotte Motor Speedway (SPEED, 7 p.m. ET), but there will be plenty of action in and around the Charlotte area to engage fans leading up to Saturday night's grand finale.
NASCAR announced Tuesday the list of 25 nominees for the NASCAR Hall of Fame's third induction class to be enshrined in January 2012. From that list, five inductees will be elected by the NASCAR Hall of Fame voting panel, which includes a nationwide fan vote on NASCAR.COM.
Of the 25 nominees, 20 return from last year's group. Five are first-timers: H. Clay Earles, Bobby Isaac, Cotton Owens, Les Richter and Leonard Wood.
Sunday's Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway seemed to have everything you could want at the end of 500 miles of NASCAR racing: A four-wide finish, sparks and a tie for the closest finish in NASCAR's history of electronic scoring.
The top-finishing competitors were all enthused by an environment that enabled a record-tying 88 lead changes -- and oh yeah, their finishes.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. has many titles – driver, owner, entrepreneur, racing enthusiast. And now prankster.
Last month the eight-time NASCAR Most Popular Driver and winner of more than 40 NASCAR-sanctioned races took control of a sponsor video production and steered it a way nobody saw coming. Wanting to liven up the set, he concocted the idea to bring JR Motorsports employees into what they thought was an interview detailing the myriad roles of a racing organization.
Strap those seat belts tight, step on the gas and experience the same rush that the stars of NASCAR and INDYCAR feel at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, by driving your personal vehicle around “The Magic Mile” during FANtasy Drive 2 on Saturday, April 23.
If you have purchased a ticket to any of the major motorsports event weekends during the 2011 season, satisfy your need for speed and take three laps around the 1.058-mile oval.
After six weeks of short- and intermediate-track races, the Cup Series heads to the largest track on its schedule -- Talladega Superspeedway.
There have been some exciting races recently at the 2.66-mile track, but there is a bit of an unknown coming into this weekend.
The winds of change appeared to be blowing pretty fiercely last weekend at Texas Motor Speedway.
And we're not talking about the gusts of wind that drivers said they had to account for during the running of the Samsung 500.
After a 76-race absence from Victory Lane, Matt Kenseth needed a quick refresher course.
"Show me where to park this thing," Kenseth radioed to crew chief Jimmy Fennig after beating race runner-up Clint Bowyer to the checkered flag by a whopping 8.315 seconds in Saturday night's Samsung Mobile 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. "It's been a while."
NASCAR issued a statistical package this week that cited the Sprint Cup Series' competitive balance and the level of competition seen in the season's first six races.
Among the numbers used to paint the picture: An average of 13 leaders per race, and 31.5 lead changes per race -- the most, after six races, in series history. Lead change records have fallen in three of the six races, Daytona, Phoenix and, most recently, Martinsville.
Folks in the Lone Star State like to say that things are always bigger in Texas, and they back it up by showing off such outrageously oversized things as steaks, Cowboys Stadium and traffic jams.
Texas Motor Speedway does its share to live up to the name. It hosts some of the biggest crowds – and traffic jams – in NASCAR. It has one of the biggest races of the season, its Chase race coming two races before the season finale.
It’s winners wear giant cowboy hats in victory lane and its trophy sports a giant pair of cowboy boots.
When Jeff Burton wrecked Jeff Gordon under caution at Texas Motor Speedway last November, the wreck wasn’t the highlight that most people saw.
Instead, it was the shoving and scuffling that ensued between the two drivers after Burton spun Gordon into the wall, knocking them both out of the race. Burton said that it wasn’t intentional, claiming that he was trying to pull alongside Gordon to apologize for
Kevin Harvick made at least two drivers angry with the way he raced last weekend at Martinsville Speedway.
But neither Todd Bodine nor Ryan Newman are his opponents for the feud of the week.
Instead, it’s Kevin Harvick vs. Kevin Harvick. No, that’s not a typo.
Oh say can you sing? New Hampshire Motor Speedway and the New Hampshire chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities have the perfect opportunity for aspiring performers to belt out the national anthem, with the first-ever Speedway Star performing competition on Saturday, April 23.
“The Magic Mile” and WGIR’s “The Morning Buzz” will give two people the opportunity to perform the national anthem in front of thousands of screaming race fans
Jimmie Johnson wasn’t happy with the speeding penalty that dropped him from second to 12th for the final restart with 29 laps remaining in the Goody's Fast Relief 500 Sunday at Martinsville.
Johnson ended up 11th.
The five-time champion felt he had judged the timing lines well enough that there is no way he could have been speeding. NASCAR determines speeding by using a driver’s elapsed
Denny Hamlin got caught on pit road by an untimely caution flag. Jimmie Johnson got caught speeding on pit road.
But neither of them had as bad a day as Martin Truex Jr. and Kasey Kahne, who were involved in a frightening crash at Martinsville Speedway.
They topped a long list of losers in the Goody's Fast Relief 500.
Kevin Harvick won his second consecutive race -- and in the process may have become the most unpopular man in Virginia.
Harvick passed Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the lead on Lap 497 of 500 and pulled away to win the Goody's Fast Relief 500 Sprint Cup race Sunday at Martinsville Speedway. Earnhardt ran second, extending his winless streak to 99 races.
Martinsville Speedway is one of the toughest and most exciting tracks on the Sprint Cup circuit, producing the type of fender-banging action fans expect from stock-car racing.
At Martinsville, drivers have to be physical, but also race with finesse, soft-pedaling brakes and protecting their equipment for an often frantic dash to the finish.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. knows what it’s like to finish in the top five at Martinsville Speedway. He just doesn’t know what it’s like to win a Sprint Cup race there.
With eight top-five finishes in 22 career starts on the smallest track on the Cup circuit, Earnhardt Jr. will look for his first career win there and try to snap a 98-race overall winless streak this weekend in the Goody’s Pain Relief 500.
NASCAR's loaded with developmental series that all work to set the stage for its premier Sprint Cup Series.
If you look at current Cup standouts Kurt Busch or Greg Biffle -- to cite just two -- NASCAR's national series such as Camping World Truck or Nationwide were their respective penultimate steps.
But you have to take a step back to get to the national series, and that's where NASCAR's perfect development platform sits, namely the K&N Pro Series.
It didn’t take Carl Edwards but a few minutes following his win at Las Vegas to assess how far Roush Fenway Racing has come in the last year.
“The Fords are back, and we’re strong,” he declared.
His teammates are in full agreement.
After five races this season, the Roush organization is far ahead of where it was this time last year. Edwards earned his first win this month and goes to Martinsville Speedway this weekend as the Sprint Cup Series points leader.
NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin is down but not out.
After finishing 39th due to engine failure this past Sunday at Auto Club Speedway in Southern California, Hamlin is sitting 21st in points. And that has him somewhat worried.
At this point, it's starting to affect me," he said.
Racing fever has hit New Hampshire Motor Speedway and the entire staff is gearing up for a historic and highly anticipated season of speed. Executive vice president and general manager, Jerry Gappens joined the fun Saturday, by taking calls from fans and selling tickets for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series LENOX Industrial Tools 301.
Gappens and the guest services department worked throughout the weekend speaking with revved up fans about the two upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events, the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 on July 17 and the SYLVANIA 300 on Sept. 25 as well as for INDYCAR 225 on Aug. 14.
They ended 2010 trash-talking and racing head to head for the Sprint Cup championship.
Going into 2011, they were expected to win races and battle for the title again.
So far, Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin have been relatively quiet and stayed out of each other’s way.
That could all change Sunday at Martinsville Speedway, where the two drivers have combined to win the last nine Cup races.
Kevin Harvick was willing to hit the wall again on Sunday at Auto Club Speedway in Southern California. Just as long as it came on the final turn of the final lap, with only the checkered flag in front of him.
It didn't come to that, not this time. So much of the scenario seemed familiar -- Harvick trying to erase a lead held by Jimmie Johnson, the No. 48 car trying to keep the No. 29 in the rearview mirror, the race approaching its end and the crowd on its collective feet in anticipation.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is ninth in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series points standings, and if he hopes to remain inside the top 10, he knows he’ll need a good run at Auto Club Speedway this weekend.
But that’s easier said than done, according to the 36-year-old Hendrick Motorsports driver.
“California is a track I need to run better at,” he said, and a look at his record on the 2-mile oval does nothing to refute that.
NASCAR's remarkable start to the season continued at Bristol Motor Speedway with a fourth different winner in the first four races and there are enough strong drivers remaining that we could easily see a fifth fresh face this weekend.
Roush Fenway Racing has dominated the 2-mile tracks in the past, which combined with the fact that Greg Biffle and Matt Kenseth have run strong on occasion in the first four events makes them drivers to watch. And the dramatic win for Trevor Bayne at Daytona suggests even David Ragan could get into the mix if the cards fall right.
You can’t run the bases with the Red Sox, shoot a free-throw with the Celtics, skate the ice like a Bruin, and you definitely can’t score a touchdown with the Patriots. But, you can drive your own car into Turn 1 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway just like Jeff Gordon during FANtasy Drive 2 on Saturday, April 23, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Kenny Wallace barely recognizes the Nationwide Series now compared to the one he raced in 22 years ago.
Back then, the series had its own identity, holding its races largely around the Southeast and traveling no further west than Nashville. Now, not only do the drivers head to Fontana this week, but there's the annual trip to Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway race fans of ALL ages can rev up their race-day experience by purchasing a pre-race pit pass or garage pass for either of the track’s two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekends or the IZOD INDYCAR Series event.
Racing offers some of the best behind-the-scenes access in all of professional sports and, for the first time, “The Magic Mile” is welcoming children into the infield, pit road and garage area to witness the excitement of race day during a NASCAR or INDYCAR weekend.
At some point, Kyle Busch will thank Rick Hendrick for creating the monster that drives the No. 18 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing.
There is nothing ordinary about Kyle Busch, and there never has been. There’s a different drummer in Busch’s brain. At driver introductions before Sunday’s Jeff Byrd 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway, Busch strode down the gangway to his own music, “Rowdy Busch,” a song written for him by Raytona500.
When Jennifer Jo Cobb quit and left her team rather than running a few laps and then parking the car in the Nationwide Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway Saturday, it demonstrated again how sensitive drivers and fans are toward start-and-park teams.
To many, it doesn’t matter that a team runs only portions of a race to raise money so it eventually can run a full race. Until the team actually attempts to run full races on a consistent basis,
Walmart is taking its low-price promise to NASCAR this season, partnering with nearly a dozen tracks to sponsor a special ticket package that includes four tickets, four soft drinks, four hot dogs and one souvenir program for $99.
The ticket promotion, which will be offered for 18 of 38 Sprint Cup races in 2011, serves as the first example of how Walmart plans to activate its new licensing agreement with NASCAR.
The question isn't whether Kyle Busch will win at Bristol Motor Speedway -- it's how soon, if ever, someone else will find a way to keep him out of Victory Lane.
First off pit road after stops under caution on Lap 429 of Sunday's Jeff Byrd 500, Busch held off pole-sitter Carl Edwards and defending race winner Jimmie Johnson to win his fifth consecutive race in NASCAR's top three national series at the .533-mile short track.
Ask NASCAR drivers and fans which race – outside of the Daytona 500 – they most look forward to each year and most of them quickly respond with the same answer.
The half-mile, high-banked short track produces some of the most thrilling, action-packed racing on the NASCAR circuit.
Jamie McMurray took some laps around Barber Motorsports Park on Wednesday.
It wasn’t a test to help him and his Sprint Cup team on road courses. It was a chance to drive one of team owner Chip Ganassi’s IndyCar Series machines.
“When I drove for Chip Ganassi from 2002 to 2005, honestly I don’t think I even saw an Indy car, never had the opportunity,” said McMurray,
New Hampshire Motor Speedway race fans of ALL ages can rev up their race-day experience by purchasing a pre-race pit pass or garage pass for either of the track’s two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekends or the IZOD INDYCAR Series event.
Racing offers some of the best behind-the-scenes access in all of professional sports and, for the first time, “The Magic Mile” is welcoming children into the infield, pit road and garage area to witness the excitement of race day during a NASCAR or INDYCAR weekend.
Rusty Wallace will never forget the sack of cash he scored after winning the 1996 Suzuka Thunder Special, the first of three NASCAR exhibition races held in Japan during the late 1990s.
In Victory Lane that afternoon, Wallace was given the choice of how he wanted his $130,940 in winnings. He could have a check or cash; of course, he took the cash. There was only one small problem --
It might be time for Jimmie Johnson and his Hendrick Motorsports team to stop experimenting and go with what they know works at Bristol Motor Speedway.
Johnson has had mixed results this year, including a third-place finish at Phoenix and 16th at Las Vegas. He is the defending winner of the spring race on the high-banked concrete short track.
Like most NASCAR drivers, AJ Allmendinger will never forget the first time he went to Bristol Motor Speedway.
Allmendinger couldn’t believe he was supposed to race on the half-mile, high-banked oval shaped like a cereal bowl. When he finally pulled onto the track in front of 160,000 revved up fans, it was one of the most exhilarating experiences of his racing career.
The high speeds and tight quarters at Bristol Motor Speedway tend to increase the intensity and cause tempers to flare a little more than at other tracks.
With the Sprint Cup Series going there for the fourth race of the season, drivers might not be able to keep their tempers in check this weekend on the 0.533-mile, high-banked concrete oval.
Bristol Motor Speedway is about more than just racing.
It’s NASCAR drama at its finest played out at one of the sport’s most unique and compelling venues.
The half-mile, high-banked bullring surrounded by 160,000 fans is known as NASCAR’s version of the Roman Coliseum. It’s where drivers go not just to race, but to do battle
Danica Patrick has been asked innumerous times and in numerous ways about her auto racing future since leaving her Scottsdale, Ariz., home to climb into a stock car early this year. Heck, it's probably played out in her dreams.
The veteran IZOD IndyCar Series driver -- much like she did a few years ago in the final year of her contract with Andretti Autosport -- acknowledged that three months into the new year she doesn't have direction.
Kasey Kahne did it again.
Making his first and possibly only Camping World Truck Series start of the year, Kahne cruised to a relatively comfortable win in Saturday's Too Tough To Tame 200 at Darlington Raceway.
The victory made Kahne the first driver in the Truck Series to win three of his first four starts.
Kurt Busch was about 30 minutes late for his interview when my phone rang.
"I was just making a run," the 2004 Sprint Cup champion and current points leader (tied with Tony Stewart) said apologetically. "It's hard to know in drag racing when you get to go out."
Yes, drag racing.
NASCAR Driver Greg Biffle was involved in his second crash of the season Wednesday, this time on a Lexington airport runway.
Biffle and two pilots were not injured when a landing-gear malfunction caused his plane to partially collapse while landing at Blue Grass Airport in Lexington, according to a news release from NASCAR.com.
In a phone interview with NASCAR Now on ESPN2, Biffle said he looked out the window and noticed the left wing rising into the air, and the right wing dragging the runway and sending up sparks.
AJ Allmendinger summed it up best for Sprint Cup drivers and teams that have gotten off to surprisingly strong starts this season.
“I vote we just start the Chase right now,” Allmendinger said at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, where he entered the race fourth in points after finishes of ninth and 11th in the first two races.
After three weeks which saw record number of lead changes at Daytona and Phoenix, plus upticks in television ratings and attendance, the lack of a Cup event this weekend takes a bit of the steam out of NASCAR's apparent resurgence.
But that shouldn't be the case in 2012 and the foreseeable future, according to NASCAR chief executive officer and chairman Brian France.
Jeff Burton and Greg Biffle are in deep trouble.
So are Jamie McMurray and Joey Logano.
Burton and Biffle are Chase For The Sprint Cup regulars. Neither McMurray nor Logano has ever qualified for the Chase.
The announcement last summer that Richard Childress Racing was adding Paul Menard as a fourth driver raised eyebrows on many levels. First there was the question of why an organization that had expanded a year earlier with disastrous results would attempt such a thing again. And then there was the question of why they would do it with Menard, a driver who, despite a few flashes on restrictor-plate and intermediate tracks, didn't seem to fit in with a stable comprised of three strong contenders for the Sprint Cup championship.
Robby Gordon, whose NASCAR probation will last through the end of the 2011 season for a physical altercation with Kevin Conway that occurred last Friday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, released a statement Tuesday saying Conway was the aggressor and he did not punch Conway.
According to Las Vegas Metropolitan Police, Conway’s report to them alleged that a couple of punches were thrown by Gordon during the incident.
For Kyle Busch, you can go home again (next year) -- but right now he's happy to be leaving Las Vegas.
Less than 100 laps into Sunday's Kobalt Tools 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Busch blew a tire. A few laps later, he blew an engine. And just like that, the Las Vegas native was out of his hometown race. In between those incidents, overzealousness on the part of Kurt Busch sent him spinning.
Perhaps Carl Edwards figures jumping off tall buildings or strapping himself into F-16 fighter jets for flights of fancy will be distracting to others, making them forget for a moment that he's proving himself a legitimate contender to take away Jimmie Johnson's Sprint Cup crown.
It is not working, however, with Jack Roush.
The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) and FOX Sports announced that the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series’ open weekend in mid-March will now deliver a never-before-seen look at the 2011 Daytona 500.
As Mark Martin climbed out of his winning race car in Victory Lane on Saturday afternoon, another, smaller celebration was unfolding along pit road at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Danica Patrick exchanged jubilant hugs and handclaps with other drivers and members of her crew, and then turned and waved at the crowd that had witnessed her breakthrough finish in the Nationwide Series.
A mistake in the pits by Tony Stewart's crew gave Carl Edwards the chance he needed to put the frustration of the first two Sprint Cup Series races of the season behind him.
Capitalizing on a penalty to Stewart, who dragged an air wrench from his stall under caution on Lap 155, Edwards powered his No. 99 Ford across the finish line 1.246 seconds ahead of Stewart's No. 14 Chevrolet in Sunday's Kobalt Tools 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Having grown up in and around Las Vegas, Kurt Busch is very well acquainted with the NASCAR track there. Inside and out. Except for one spot -- Victory Lane.
This weekend, Busch will take an 11th swing at winning at his hometown venue, 1.5-mile Las Vegas Motor Speedway, and the way things are going for him and his Penske Racing team, it just might happen.
When Rick Hendrick and his team decided after last season – he insists it wasn’t just his decision – to juggle drivers and crew chiefs, it wasn’t spur of the moment.
Jimmie Johnson and Chad Knaus would remain together on the No. 48 team, figuring five straight Sprint Cup championships weren’t to be trifled with, though crew members were changed.
Gentlemen, place your bets.
Well, before you do, someone else has to place your odds. With this Sunday's Kobalt Tools 400 to be run at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, did you ever wonder who sets all those odds everyone scrambles to bet on? Better yet, did you really have any idea how many different "proposition bets" you can legally lay down on NASCAR races every week in Vegas?
So this is what NASCAR’s new points system has led to.
Wrecks, wrecks and more wrecks.
Big wrecks, little wrecks and massive pileups.
And now, under NASCAR’s new, tighter points system, a wreck not only ruins a race for those involved, but it could wreck the championship hopes for some.
There will be plenty of stars and celebrities in the spotlight this weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. There always is – it's Las Vegas, the glitz and glamour capital of the world.
But two of the biggest will be Sprint Cup stars Kurt and Kyle Busch, Las Vegas natives who will have the hometown crowd behind them for Sunday's Kobalt Tools 400.
The week after his Daytona 500 victory, Trevor Bayne surged to No. 1 in licensed merchandise sales at this Web site's online store. His gear sold at a rate nearly three times that of any other driver save Dale Earnhardt Jr., and double that of last year's Daytona 500 champion, Jamie McMurray. A whole new line of products, from caps to T-shirts to die-cast cars, was rolled out. A celebratory homecoming in Knoxville, Tenn., was planned, and hundreds of people braved flooding and stormy weather to see the 20-year-old NASCAR sensation honored by dignitaries in his hometown.
This East Tennessee city welcomed native son Trevor Bayne back into its soggy and wind-blown arms Monday afternoon.
It was a day on which the weather conditions couldn't have been much worse. Violent storms hammered the area, leaving much of it flooded. There were countless lightning strikes, hail and a report of at least one tornado.
Kyle Busch tried to apologize for sliding into Carl Edwards and causing a multicar wreck Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway.
He might have to wait a few weeks to see if his apology has been accepted.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway race fans of ALL ages can rev up their race-day experience by purchasing a pre-race pit pass or garage pass for either of the track’s two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekends or the IZOD INDYCAR Series event.
Racing offers some of the best behind-the-scenes access in all of professional sports and, for the first time, “The Magic Mile” is welcoming children into the infield, pit road and garage area to witness the excitement of race day during a NASCAR or INDYCAR weekend.
During the final 20 laps Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway, Jeff Gordon found a way to beat the driver perhaps closest to matching Gordon's talent during his prime.
"We beat Kyle Busch! Are you kidding me? Pinch me, man! Pinch me!"
No one stays atop NASCAR's throne forever. Richard Petty. David Pearson. Cale Yarborough.
The 2011 NASCAR season is off to a roaring start, sparked by a thrilling Daytona 500 with a shocking outcome.
In the first three races of the season, there have been exciting finishes, a record number of lead changes, big multicar wrecks, aggressive driving, tempers flaring and three different winners for the first time since 2007.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. could smile after a 10th-place finish on a day when he not only had to pit under green with a loose wheel, but his team even had a wheel break on one of its jacks.
It seems as if Earnhardt Jr., who also overshot his pit on one stop at Phoenix International Raceway, is a magnet for those types of setbacks and mistakes.
Jeff Gordon didn't just drive to end hunger Sunday -- he drove to end a famine.
With a convincing victory in the Subway Fresh Fit 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, where he beat runner-up Kyle Busch to the checkered flag by 1.137 seconds, Gordon ended a 66-race winless streak dating to April 2009 at Texas.
NASCAR announced Wednesday that its NASCARHomeTracks.com website will feature live radio broadcasts of 32 regional touring series events in 2011.
The live broadcasts will be handled by a group from Speed51 Radio.
The first broadcast of the season took place Thursday for the K&N Pro Series West division season opening event at Phoenix International Raceway.
How wild and crazy was young Trevor Bayne’s victory Sunday in the Daytona 500?
Many are rating it the biggest surprise triumph in NASCAR's history, which dates to 1949.
The man stood incongruously in the middle of the action at driver introductions for the Sprint All-Star Race, dressed casually in a vintage Bill Elliott T-shirt and denim jeans.
Next to him stood someone who could only be his brother, by the looks of it, dressed about the same. A small, soft cooler was slung from the second man's shoulder, dripping water from the melting ice wrapped around the beer cans inside.
It was standing room only in the Daytona media center this past Sunday afternoon when Trevor Bayne walked in following his dramatic win in the Daytona 500. But in the same room a year earlier, just a handful of people looked on as he drove an iRacing.com-powered simulator while Michael Waltrip talked him around Daytona International Speedway.
Posted on You Tube by Simcraft, builder of the Apex simulator builder, here’s a video of that day in 2010 when a former Daytona 500 champion used iRacing to coach a future one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RkoG1MKvfU&feature=related
Wow, what a wild Daytona weekend! We had an incredible run in the Truck Series event on Friday. We barely missed the win! It would have been such an awesome experience to go to Victory Lane for the first time for our new partner OneMain Financial, but it just wasn't meant to be.OneMain Financial will be back on our car in Texas but for the next few weeks we have several new sponsors that we hope to take to Victory Lane for the first time. Our Nationwide day wasn't what we had hoped for either, but now we get to head into one of my favorite tracks, Phoenix International Raceway.
At the end of the 53rd Daytona 500 Sunday, the proof was in the pushing for many, but none so much as David Gilliland and Bobby Labonte whose third- and fourth-place finishes, respectively, were breakthroughs.
"There's no question in my mind Front Row Motorsports is going to be the most improved team in Sprint Cup this season," Gilliland said after posting his best finish in 84 races,
Glen Wood, the 85-year-old co-owner and former driver for the legendary Wood Brothers Racing team, had a simple response when asked if Trevor Bayne’s Daytona 500 win ranked as the team’s biggest in its 61-year history.
“It would about have to be,” Wood said Monday morning outside of Daytona International Speedway, where he competed in the first Daytona 500 in 1959. “For one thing, it paid more.”
I first met 2011 Daytona 500 Winner Trevor Bayne in June 2008 at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, New Hampshire. Trevor was`17 and had just graduated from high school. It was his 1st season in the NASCAR Camping World East Series, what was once the NASCAR Busch North Tour. Trevor was a development driver for Dale Earnhardt Inc., a member of a 3 car team that included Jeffrey Earnhardt and Jesus Hernandez.
It was a beautiful day, the sun shining brightly in a brilliant blue sky.
Perhaps it could have been taken as an omen -- except that has happened many times previously, and hardly could be counted on as a certain harbinger of good times ahead. On this Sunday, however, the perfect weather and the nearly full grandstands at Daytona International Speedway provided the ideal backdrop to something truly special.
Two and a half years ago, Trevor Bayne was sitting in the press box at Thompson (Conn.) International Speedway talking about his first NASCAR win.
The 20-year-old from Knoxville, Tenn., was nearly speechless Sunday as he stole the spotlight on NASCAR's biggest stage at Daytona International Speedway with his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory -- the 2011 Daytona 500.
Trevor Bayne, who celebrated his 20th birthday the day before, became the youngest winner of the Daytona 500 today when he held off a hard-charging Carl Edwards to win the 53d annual Great American Race in a thrilling green-white-checkered finish at Daytona International Speedway.
Driving the legendary No. 21 Motorcraft Ford fielded by the Wood Brothers Racing team, Bayne, of Knoxville, Tenn., recorded his biggest victory of his NASCAR career in only his second career start in a race in which track records were set for 74 lead changes among 22 drivers and 16 cautions.
The Daytona 500 will take place one week later in 2012, on the final Sunday in February, NASCAR has announced.
The race weekend is being pushed one week back from the traditional President's Day weekend to the final weekend in February. The date for the Daytona 500 is Feb. 26, 2012. To maintain the end of season schedule, the off Sprint Cup weekend typically scheduled in March will now be eliminated.
When the green flag is waved Sunday afternoon to start the new NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season, race fans will notice several new driver/sponsor combinations.
And in an effort to ease the confusion, New Hampshire Motor Speedway officials offer the following overview:
The main sponsor of Elliott Sadler's Nationwide Series team is rebranding itself this year, changing its name from CitiFinancial to One Main Financial.
Sadler hopes to do exactly the same thing with his name.
Former Cup driver Elliott Sadler is the early favorite to win the Nationwide Series championship.
NASCAR star Joey Logano says he is ready to hoist another giant lobster in New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s victory lane during a new television commercial that will air during coverage of this weekend’s season-opening NASCAR events in Daytona Beach, Fla.
The commercial, produced and directed by Victory Management Group, shows “The Magic Mile” snow crew shoveling 55 inches of snow off of the track’s Granite Stripe start-finish line, making room for Loudon the Lobster and the cars and stars of NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series.
It is finally here the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 2011 Season! To kick start the year, join the New Hampshire Motor Speedway family as they fan out around New England to celebrate the Daytona 500. “The Magic Mile” is hosting five Daytona 500 parties in Nashua, Newington and Manchester, N.H. as well as in Foxborough and Boston, Mass.
Join us at:
Dale Earnhardt Jr., who won the pole for the Daytona 500, will have to start in the rear of the field because of a crash that destroyed his primary car Wednesday in practice at Daytona International Speedway.
Earnhardt Jr. will also start at the rear of the field in the first Gatorade Duel qualifying race Thursday.
It's been quite an offseason for NASCAR following Jimmie Johnson's fifth consecutive championship. Not only is there a new point system across all three national series, but also added were wild cards in the Chase and drivers have to pick just one series to run for the championship.
The changes were made with an eye on competition and the fans, to make the sport better than ever. But which rule will have the biggest impact? Bill Kimm and Mark Spoor weigh in with their thoughts, read theirs and then weigh in with yours in the comments below. And don't forget to vote in the poll at the right.
In what could be one of the best fan enhancements in the 21-year history of New Hampshire Motor Speedway, a new $1.2 million, state-of-the-art Panasonic scoreboard and video system will be in place when the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series returns to New England’s largest sports and entertainment facility on July 17.
As part of the track’s on-going effort to better the race-day experience for fans, the Panasonic scoreboard boasts a four-sided video display that stands 80-feet tall. That’s 20-feet taller than the CITGO sign at Boston’s Fenway Park.
Carl Edwards says there’s no need for a long, messy contract negotiation between him and Roush Fenway Racing over whether he will return to the team in 2012.
About five minutes later, he says he’s not in any rush to sign a new contract.
If that sounds a little contradictory, it is.
Leave it to Ryan Newman to cut to the core of the issue.
Always quick to remind everyone that he earned an engineering degree (Vehicle Structure Engineering, to be precise) from Purdue University, Newman sometimes has a way of talking down to questioners. He just can't help himself, forgetting that said questioners wouldn't be asking him questions in the first place if they knew as much as he did.
The pressure's off Dale Earnhardt Jr. -- until next Sunday, that is.
In Sunday's qualifying session at Daytona International Speedway, Earnhardt edged Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jeff Gordon for the top starting spot in next Sunday's season-opening Daytona 500.
Turning a lap in 48.364 seconds (186.089 mph), Earnhardt claimed the 10th Coors Light pole award of his career and his first at a restrictor-plate superspeedway.
One lucky race fan will win the ultimate New Hampshire Motor Speedway VIP experience this weekend during the Eastern Fishing and Outdoor Expo in Worcester, Mass.
Race fans that stop by the New Hampshire Motor Speedway table can enter to win two VIP suite passes, pre-race pit passes and VIP parking access for the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 on July 17.
Five-time defending Cup Series champion crew chief Chad Knaus went on TV last Monday to, among other things, reveal that his Hendrick Motorsports team had finalized its six-man over-the-wall pit crew -- as well as a backup man for each spot -- at least for the next two weekend's season-opening events.
Hendrick created some ripples throughout the sport last season mid-race at Texas, when the organization switched the over-the-wall crews
This year’s Sprint Cup free agent pool could get smaller soon, but there are plenty of big-name drivers without contracts beyond 2011.
Roush Fenway Racing driver Greg Biffle said he hopes to get a contract extension done in the next few months.
His Roush teammate, Carl Edwards, isn’t as close.
In the last few years, NASCAR has said good-bye to Texaco, Verizon, Old Spice, Jim Beam, Jack Daniel’s, Irwin Tools, AT&T and Wrigley’s.
And while they haven’t said good-bye, they’re seeing much less of DeWalt, DuPont, Kellogg’s and DirecTV
The notion of retirement has shadowed Mark Martin for nearly a decade now, ever since he began the process of separating himself from a Jack Roush car that had become as much a part of his identity as his brushy gray hair. Almost every year since has brought questions of whether he'd be back the next season, and yet here he is, now at 52, still racing for one of the best organizations in NASCAR and still doing it at a very high level.
And now, facing that question again. This is the final year of Martin's contract with Hendrick Motorsports, and young buck Kasey Kahne awaits to take over the No. 5 car for the 2012 campaign and beyond. For a driver who's won 40 races and been a part of NASCAR as long as most can remember, next season brings with it only one certainty.
Maybe the biggest fan criticisms of Dale Earnhardt Jr. are that he doesn’t care about his performance or that he doesn’t have the will to win. Or maybe not even the talent.
Maybe the biggest criticism of his team owner, Rick Hendrick, is that he doesn’t give Earnhardt Jr. the best cars or the best personnel.
NASCAR knew Sunday morning at Daytona International Speedway, that the 206-plus mph speeds seen in Saturday night's Budweiser Shootout were unacceptable for the rest of Speedweeks.
"What we know is, we can have good races at 100 miles and hour and 200 miles and hour and everything in between," Sprint Cup director John Darby said on Sunday evening. "I think we can agree, for both the competitors and NASCAR, that 206 was probably a little bit to the extreme side, so we'll do what we can do to probably cushion that, some."
A 6-year-old girl fighting for her life against leukemia has touched the hearts of Charlotteans, and their outpouring of support could help other cancer patients, too.
A mechanic with NASCAR driver Bobby Labonte's team was so moved by an Observer story about Jordan Jemsek that he suggested the team promote a March 5 bone marrow drive in her honor.
With Daytona just around the corner, I'm glad to see the end of the offseason in sight. Around this time of year, I begin to get cabin fever and I'm ready to go racing -- especially this season as I move to the Nationwide Series to drive for Kevin Harvick Inc.
Even though I'm really excited to start racing again, I did get to enjoy a lot of quality time with my family over the offseason. My wife Amanda and I were able to celebrate our son Wyatt's first Christmas at home. It is such a fun and cool experience.
The offseason has morphed into the preseason. And in a couple of weeks, the season-opening Daytona 500 will be upon us.
Forget Punxsutawney Phil! Weary, snow-bound New Englanders looked to Loudon the Lobster, New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s favorite crustacean, as he officially waved the white flag on winter.
Loudon, the fastest lobster in the world, emerged from his tank to visit “The Magic Mile’s” Granite Stripe start-finish line to predict when “Snowmageddon 2011” will end and when racing will resume at the speedway.
The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) released today its telecast times for the 2011 season, primarily preserving the earlier and consistent start times established in 2010.
For Jamie McMurray, the 2010 season was one magical moment after another.
Winning the Daytona 500. Winning the Brickyard 400. Winning the Chase race at Charlotte. Helping team owner Chip Ganassi sweep the three biggest American auto races (including Dario Franchitti’s victory in last year’s Indy 500).
Danica Patrick is planning to spend Super Bowl Sunday at home in Arizona, away from the hustle and bustle, not to mention the cold weather.
Sporting a Pittsburgh Steelers hat -- Bears fans can never pull for the Packers, ever -- she'll be surrounded by snacks and drinks, watching the game and those over-the-top commercials like everyone else.
Kasey Kahne expects to have more stability and less drama at Red Bull Racing this year than he had at Richard Petty Motorsports in 2010, hopefully producing better results on the track. Only time will tell if that’s the case, but Kahne has every reason to believe things will play out that way
Joey Logano is smarter, more mature, more experienced and this season also more confident.
That's something Logano hasn't always had in his brief NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career.
"He needs that," Joe Gibbs Racing president J.D. Gibbs said. "We forget how young he is and what little time he had before running in this sport. That really bodes well for our future.
When the 2011 Sprint Cup Series season opens Feb. 20, it could be that the new racing surface at Daytona International Speedway has less to do with deciding who wins the Daytona 500 than the new fueling systems that will be used in competition by teams for the first time.
So say many of those who will be involved in trying to make certain the cars get enough fuel in them during the race.
Frank Stoddard, 14-time winning NASCAR Sprint Cup crew chief, announced today that he has formed his own NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race team. Stoddard will own the #32 Ford Fusion and plans to compete in the full schedule.
Stoddard, a native of North Haverhill, New Hampshire, paved the way for a successful Sprint Cup career by working with the great Stanley “Stub” Fadden while racing short tracks throughout the northeast and collecting four wins together.
Fueled by his passion for motorsports, NASCAR enthusiast and Mega Millions lottery winner Joe Denette formed Joe Denette Motorsports to compete in Camping World Truck Series. JDM will make its debut in the season opener at Daytona International Speedway and plans to run a full season in 2011.
Denette, a Fredericksburg, Va., native, did not have a promising start to 2009. He was laid off from his job of seven years and had been unemployed for four months. However, that didn't stop Denette from partaking in two of his most cherished hobbies, NASCAR and playing the lottery.
Unless Jimmie Johnson has decided that five Cup titles is enough and chooses to run for the Nationwide or truck series title in 2011, it’s a given that the 35-year-old will be the favorite to win a sixth straight Sprint Cup championship.
But while Johnson’s success at Hendrick Motorsports hasn’t slowed, the same can’t be said for his three teammates, who went winless in 2010.
Call him cocky, arrogant or just overly confident, but Denny Hamlin will tell you without hesitation that he is one of the toughest competitors in NASCAR.
He makes no bones about it. He’s just being brutally honest.
There is less of Tony Stewart to go around these days, but don't get the idea he's gone all Mark Martin on the racing world.
That would be, in the carefully considered words of Stewart, "insane." But Stewart, who is roughly 15 pounds lighter than he was last fall, did admit that Martin was his inspiration for attempting to get into better physical condition as he approaches age 40.
For the next three weeks, Dale Earnhardt Jr. will dominate much of the NASCAR conversation again – although not in the way he would like to. His famous father died 10 years ago, at the 2001 Daytona 500, which means that he constantly faces questions about that horrible day and its aftermath.
For the rest of the 2011 season, though, it will be up to Earnhardt to stay relevant.
Chad Knaus, crew chief for five-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson, says there will be changes on his No. 48 team’s pit crew, but admits that with only a little more than two weeks remaining before cars are back on the track at Daytona, he still isn’t sure what those changes will be.
“I’m happy with what we have right now, for sure, at this time of the season,” Knaus said during this week’s Sprint Media Tour. “I don’t have a roster picked of the guys that will be starting but I’m real happy with where we are at.”
Roush Fenway Racing teammates Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards and Matt Kenseth all have a lot in common.
They each have won 16 or more Sprint Cup races. They each are perennial championship contenders. And they’ve each been with Roush their entire NASCAR careers.
The final day of the annual NASCAR Sprint Media Tour hosted by Charlotte Motor Speedway kicked off with an announcement from NASCAR.com that focused on improved services catering to race fans.
The site's current Race Buddy and new NASCAR Fantasy Live programs will feature more detailed data available to NASCAR fans.
"The changes and additions we are implementing are geared toward making the NASCAR fan as excited and engaged in the sport as possible," said Jason Williams, general manager of NASCAR.com
When NASCAR returns to New Hampshire Motor Speedway for the Lenox Industrial Tools 301 on July 17 and the SYLVANIA 300 on Sept. 25, race fans, competitors and track officials will be better able to understand how the on-track action impacts a driver’s position in the points standings.
The change comes as the result of a new simplified points system that separates finishing positions by a single point.
With just a few weeks remaining until the Sprint Cup Series season gets under way, Sprint unveiled its 2011 Miss Sprint Cup lineup Wednesday night in Charlotte, N.C.
Returning Miss Sprint Cup representatives Paige Duke and Monica Palumbo were joined by newcomer Kim Coon. The trio was introduced to a crowd of race fans and motorsports media at the popular Whisky River nightclub.
NASCAR Restructures Point System and Method for Setting Chase Field
NASCAR announced Wednesday it would restructure the way it awards points and how it sets the field for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup in 2011.
Brian France, NASCAR chairman and chief executive officer, made the announcements at the NASCAR Hall of Fame during the annual NASCAR Sprint Media Tour hosted by Charlotte Motor Speedway.
NASCAR announced Wednesday that it has added a wild card element to setting the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field and it has simplified its points system for 2011, making it easier for fans, competitors and the industry to understand.
While the 12-driver Chase field remains intact, the final two spots will be determined by the number of wins during the first 26 races.
Nothing beats being at the race track in person, but for fans that don’t have the opportunity to get to Irwindale, Calif., for the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown, NASCAR will be providing a unique experience through the official website of NASCAR’s touring and weekly series.
NASCARHometracks.com will host live streaming video of the on-track activity for the both Friday, Jan. 28 and Saturday, Jan. 29 leading up to the live broadcast on SPEED of race drivers have dubbed the ‘Daytona 500 of short-track racing.'
Richard Childress took the microphone at the very beginning of Tuesday's media visit to his Richard Childress Racing shop and wasted little time in making a bold proclamation.
"This year is the year to knock Jimmie [Johnson] from the throne," Childress said. "We were close with Kevin [Harvick] last year, but this is the year to do it -- and it's going to be RCR, I feel certain. So I'm going to make that [prediction]."
Michael Waltrip Unveils New Book About 2001 Daytona 500
During breakfast on the second day of the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Media Tour hosted by Charlotte Motor Speedway, two-time Daytona 500 winner Michael Waltrip introduced his new book to the motorsports press.
In the Blink of an Eye: Dale, Daytona, and the Day that Changed Everythingtells Waltrip’s story as he experienced the highest and lowest points of his career within a matter of minutes on February 18, 2001. Written by Waltrip and New York Times Bestseller Ellis Henican, the memoir takes readers through Waltrip’s early career and into Daytona International Speedway’s victory lane after 462 failed attempts at a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win.
It is finally here the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 2011 Season! To kick start the year, join the New Hampshire Motor Speedway family as they fan out around New England to celebrate the Daytona 500. “The Magic Mile” is hosting five Daytona 500 parties in Nashua, Newington and Manchester, N.H. as well as in Foxboro and Boston, Mass.
NASCAR officials are satisfied heading into next month's Speedweeks despite Preseason Thunder's top speeds that were faster than those registered at December's Goodyear tire test at Daytona International Speedway. There was as much as a 14 mph differential between qualifying and drafting speeds during three days of testing.
One morning session was rained out, which left one morning exclusively devoted to single-car runs and then four sessions in which drafting was allowed. However, single-car and two-car runs still dominated, with no drafts of more than six cars seen.
NASCAR officials are satisfied heading into next month's Speedweeks despite Preseason Thunder's top speeds that were faster than those registered at December's Goodyear tire test at Daytona International Speedway. There was as much as a 14 mph differential between qualifying and drafting speeds during three days of testing.
One morning session was rained out, which left one morning exclusively devoted to single-car runs and then four sessions in which drafting was allowed. However, single-car and two-car runs still dominated, with no drafts of more than six cars seen.
Blue skies, warm air. Cars on the race track.
That's how the 2011 edition of Preseason Thunder at Daytona kicked off Thursday at Daytona International Speedway, the first of a three-day Sprint Cup Series test.
Former Cup Series driver Jerry Nadeau has been hired as the driving coach for Jeffrey Earnhardt's rookie season in the Camping World Truck Series.
Nadeau will be mentoring Earnhardt not only on track at the races, but off track as well. Jeffrey's grandfather, Dale Earnhardt, raced against Nadeau on many occasions with Nadeau winning the last race Earnhardt competed in prior to the Daytona 500 which claimed his life.
When 17 drivers got a chance to test on Daytona International Speedway’s repaved oval last month at a Goodyear tire test, Joe Gibbs Racing’s Joey Logano wasn’t among them.
The Gibbs teams didn’t have their new restrictor-plate cars ready and opted to skip to two-day test. Team officials figured the three-day test session that begins Thursday should be enough to get ready for Speedweeks, which features the Feb. 20 Daytona 500.
With just 12 drivers making the Chase For The Sprint Cup each year, and the number of annual race winners hovering around the same mark, the list of drivers who underachieved in 2010 is a long one.
Four drivers who made the Chase in 2009 missed it last year. Two other former Chase participants – Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Martin Truex Jr. – also failed to return to the championship race last year.
Just the name alone packs a punch, conveying so much more than simply a position on a map. It's one of those locales that has a certain mythical element connected to it, that at its mere mention brings a million feelings, images, or emotions to mind. Maybe it's the memory of all the things that have happened there, both good and bad. Maybe it's the sheer scale of the place, everything oversized and overwhelming. Maybe it's something as simple as the ominous long vowel sound in the middle syllable, which allows its verbalization to be stretched out to almost dramatic lengths.
In the next two weeks, NASCAR officials are expected to announce changes that will affect both the Sprint Cup and Nationwide series. Will the Cup points system undergo a complete overhaul? Will Cup drivers not be allowed to earn points in the Nationwide Series? Will the Chase For The Sprint Cup go through yet another format change? We’ll know the answers soon.
In the meantime, here’s a look at seven changes we would like to see in 2011:
Next week's three-day NASCAR Sprint Cup Series test at Daytona International Speedway brings the first official engine firings of 2011.
Don’t think for a second that it represents the new year’s first official work.
NASCAR driver Juan Montoya and his wife, Connie, became parents for the third time last year, and they're enjoying the experience tremendously.
But sometimes, thanks to the activity of him and Connie's Formula Smiles Foundation, you would think the Montoyas actually have thousands of kids, based off the numbers of youngsters they help.
There’s a long list of them every year – drivers coming off disappointing seasons who desperately need to turn things around.
Some are in a prolonged slump. Others just had a bad year.
But they all have one thing in common – they need to show significant improvement in 2011 or they could find their future in jeopardy beyond this season.
Check one box.
It seems simple, doesn't it? Just draw an X in the appropriate place, and you're committed to running for only one title on NASCAR's national level -- Sprint Cup, Nationwide, or Camping World Truck. Say goodbye to the moonlighters trying to double-dip championships, and hello to NASCAR's first real attempt to limit incursions into its No. 2 series. As Dave Rodman reported earlier this week, drivers won't be barred from competing on more than one national tour, but they will be restricted to pursuing a single championship of their choice.
NASCAR's quest to find the perfect technical combination to provide the best possible racing show at Speedweeks 2011 at Daytona International Speedway continued Thursday.
NASCAR confirmed the carburetor restrictor plate that will be used for next week's three-day test session at Daytona will have 29/32nd-inch openings to restrict fuel and airflow into the intake manifold.
As Daytona inches closer on the calendar, the NASCAR.COM writing staff looks ahead to the 2011 season and offers up some predictions. The focus for Thursday is which driver is the one on which you should keep your eyes in 2011.
For all the victories he's piled up in Nationwide and Trucks -- including the 2009 Nationwide drivers championship -- Kyle Busch remains somewhat of an enigma in Cup.
Only three active drivers – Tony Stewart, Kurt Busch and Jimmie Johnson – have won at least one NASCAR Cup race each season for the past nine years. For those championship-winning drivers, a losing stretch is measured in weeks, occasionally months. But never has it been measured in years.
The same can’t be said for several of their fellow competitors. A dozen or more drivers will head into the 2011 season looking to return to the winner’s circle and end stretches of futility that span anywhere from a single season to seven years.
Turner Motorsports announced Wednesday the addition of racing legend Mark Martin to its 2011 driver lineup. Martin will pilot the No. 32 in Nationwide Series events at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Auto Club Speedway, Michigan International Speedway and Kentucky Speedway with crew chief Trent Owens calling the shots. He will also drive the No. 32 in Camping World Truck Series races at Michigan International Speedway and Pocono Raceway.
One storyline NASCAR fans won’t be reading about in 2011 will be a race for Sprint Cup rookie of the year.
So far no rookie driver has committed to run the full Cup season.
With teams looking to reduce costs and sponsors hesitant to take a chance on unproven drivers, Cup teams have mostly shied away from driver development programs in recent years.
Drivers in NASCAR's three national series will have to elect a single championship to chase in 2011, eliminating the ability of drivers such as Brad Keselowski, Carl Edwards and Paul Menard -- who were full-time double-dippers in 2010 -- to chase two championships at once.
NASCAR has scheduled a "competition update" on Jan. 21 with NASCAR president Mike Helton and vice president for competition Robin Pemberton as part of the "Preseason Thunder" Sprint Cup test session at Daytona International Speedway.
A half-day presentation was reduced to a succinct 90 minutes. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway media center was exchanged for a ballroom at the Westin Hotel in Indianapolis. Bagpipes ushered reigning IZOD IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti to the stage. The message was more proactive than explanatory.
Just as Mario Andretti, Earl Ross and David Hobbs were drawn to the Daytona 500 in years past, several international drivers are targeting the 2011 NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown, a race that has come to be known as the ‘Daytona 500 of short-track racing,’ on Jan. 28-29 at Toyota Speedway at Irwindale (Calif.) as an opportunity to make their mark on the world of NASCAR.
As Daytona inches closer on the calendar, the NASCAR.COM writing staff looks ahead to the 2011 season and offers up some predictions. The focus for Tuesday is which driver won't live up to expectations in 2011.
When it comes to reasonable expectations in 2011, returning the No. 88 Chevrolet to respectability should be Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s No. 1 goal.
Brian Vickers, who was forced to take a medical leave of absence from the Sprint Cup Series last spring, made his first laps in one of his Red Bull Racing Team stock cars in eight months Monday at Walt Disney World Speedway in Orlando, Fla.
The first day of the two-day session was interrupted by rain in mid-afternoon but both Vickers, who last drove in May 2010, and his new teammate Kasey Kahne, who said he "felt great" after having surgery on both knees immediately after the 2010 season, were thrilled.
The 2010 NASCAR season had nearly everything for which a fan could ask.
Compelling races, thrilling finishes, driver confrontations and feuds and, at the end, one of the closest championship races in history.
The exciting finish to the season gave NASCAR plenty of momentum heading into 2011.
With a strong lineup that features former Sprint Cup Series champions, last year's Chase field, a host of former outstanding rookies, along with a collection of previous winners at the sport's most storied race track, NASCAR announced Friday the list of eligible competitors for the 2011 Budweiser Shootout at Daytona.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway will be featured this weekend at two New England area expositions, the Northeast Motorcycle Expo in Providence, R.I. and the Northeast Motorsports Expo in Augusta, Maine.
“The Magic Mile” will showcase a variety of displays, raffle drawings and past race footage.
New Hampshire Motor Speedway will make its movie debut Saturday in the made-for-television family drama “Change of Plans,” which airs at 8 p.m. (EST) on FOX.
Jeff Burton, a veteran NASCAR driver and four-time winner at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, worked with the cast and crew in filming “The Magic Mile’s” scene during the SYLVANIA 300 weekend in September.
The most ambitious racing schedule in the 21-year history of New Hampshire Motor Speedway includes the three largest sporting events to be held in New England during 2011.
For the 15th consecutive year, “The Magic Mile” will host two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series dates with the LENOX Industrial Tools 301 on Sunday, July 17, and the SYLVANIA 300 on Sunday, Sept. 25.
Ray Evernham Enterprises has been retained to consult for the Hendrick Companies, a management company formed in 2005 to oversee strategic initiatives for chairman Rick Hendrick.
Founded in 2008 by Ray Evernham, REE will consult on special projects related to Hendrick's core businesses. In that role, REE's initial focus will be development of the Hendrick Performance retail brand of high-performance parts, vehicles, products and related services.
For race fans, these are the doldrums. The last of the confetti from the previous season's finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway has long been swept up. Champion's Week in Las Vegas has come and gone. The holidays have given way to a cold, dark, silent period that won't be broken until late January, when the engines fire for a full-field test at Daytona International Speedway. Any real racing is still a distant six weeks away.
Welcome to 2011, everybody! Hope 2010 closed out well for you and yours. As the new year kicks off, it dawns on me that we're so totally living in the future. I mean, check it out -- the iPhone is so much better than Star Trek communicators (and the iPhone 5 will feature a laser beam!), we've actually got flying cars now (ask Carl Edwards and Brad Keselowski), and aliens walk among us. How else to explain the dominance of Jimmie Johnson, huh?
We are only a few weeks away from the first full-field NASCAR Sprint Cup testing of the new surface at Daytona International Speedway, and then only a couple weeks after that we all head back to Daytona for SpeedWeeks.
After five straight years of dominance, everybody knows that Jimmie Johnson and the No. 48 team are the ones to beat. Everyone is working on their master plan to dethrone he and his Hendrick Motorsports team.
Thanks to NASCAR’s no-holds-barred approach to racing and adjustments to the new Sprint Cup car, the 2010 season produced some of the most exciting racing fans have seen in years.
There was plenty of bumping and banging – on and off the track – along with thrilling finishes, controversy, surprising winners and the closest points race in Chase history.
The only thing that didn’t change was the champion.
Here’s a look at the top 10 races of the season:
We have just finished posting the top 10 stories in 2010, and if you’re anything like me, you’re tired of rehashing 2010.
So on to 2011.
Here are 10 stories that could make news in 2011. That is, if they really occur. They might sound strange, but who could have predicted last year a Daytona pothole, a Jeff Burton-Jeff Gordon scrap and a driver signing a contract to get in a car in 2012?
As 2010 comes to a close, NASCAR.COM looks back at the season that was and forward at the season that's looming on the horizon with some Top 5 lists.
In Saturday's list, David Caraviello breaks down the five biggest issues facing NASCAR.