Archive for July, 2012

By Todd Warshaw, Getty Images for NASCAR
Kevin Harvick, right, and his wife, DeLana, pose for a photo before the season-ending awards ceremony in Las Vegas on Dec. 2. DeLana was 14 weeks pregnant in this picture.

Baby Otis has arrived.

On Sunday, Kevin and DeLana Harvick welcomed their first child into the world, Keelan (prounced Keylan) Paul Harvick. Baby Otis, has he has been called for nine months, weighed in a 6.8lbs and 19 inches long.

In a statement from Kevin Harvick, he said “Waiting on Keelan was the longest nine months of my entire life, but time literally stood still when I held our baby for the first time. I’ve accomplished a lot in my life that I’m proud of, but those moments don’t hold a candle to becoming a father and seeing that little face looking up at you. DeLana and I are just amazed by how special and rewarding this is.”

Both mother and baby are doing great. No word on if Baby Keelan has a matching firesuit like dad yet.

Associated Press
Tony Stewart celebrates after winning the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday.

Unlike the Daytona 500 in February, which had to be delayed for more than 30 hours because of ran, the weather for the Coke Zero 400 on Saturday night was perfect.

The racing on the track left little to the imagination, as the first half of the scheduled 160 laps were caution free. The first caution was on Lap 82, when Sam Hornish, Jr. cut a tire and spun. Hornish wasn’t even scheduled to race in this event today. He was a quick replacement for Penske Racing teammate AJ Allmendinger, who was suspended by NASCAR after receiving a positive drug test of his “A” sample taken randomly last week at Kentucky Speedway. Allmendinger has 72 hours to formally request his “B” sample be tested.

While the theme of the night was circled around Allmendinger’s issues off the track, on the track it was Roush-Fenway Racing’s dominance on the track. Matt Kenseth, who announced recently would be leaving RFR at seasons end, would clinch the most bonus pints for lead the most laps but at the end of the night it was Tony Stewart who was able to pass Kenseth with half a lap to go and capture his fourth Coke Zero 400 victory, while the rest of the field was wrecking behind him. Read the rest of this entry »

Kurt Busch celebrates with crew members after winning the Nationwide Series NASCAR auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Friday, July 6, 2012, in Daytona Beach, Fla. Photo: Terry Renna / AP

 

James Finch, Kurt Busch’s car owner, has never doubted his driver’s ability to wheel a race car and on Friday night his confidence was rewarded in a stunning final lap charge that took him to victory lane in the Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway.

Busch, who was suspended for one race a month ago for challenging Sporting News reporter Bob Pockrass, drove Finch’s unsponsored No. 1 Chevrolet to Gatorade Victory Lane and in the process he put on an impressive show.

“I don’t care about me right now,” Busch said. “Tonight is about Phoenix Racing.”

Busch was involved in a 16-car pileup with just 35 laps left in the race but that didn’t slow the 2004 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion down.

The race went into over time, where Busch started fourth but got himself out front in turn three. He was able to hold off the 2011 NASCAR Nationwide Series champion off for his second Nationwide Series win of the season and first with Phoenix Racing. His first win came earlier this season with Kyle Busch Motorsports at Richmond International Raceway.

 

The race set a record with 42 lead changes and 16 different leaders, besting the previous mark set at Daytona earlier this season.

Kurt Busch led the most with 23, while Patrick was next with 14.

There was also plenty of wrecks as well.

One was involving NASCAR’s media darling, Danica Patrick. Her No. 7 JR Motorsports Chevrolet slammed head first into the inside retaining wall with 16 laps remaining. She would finish 31st. Her in-car camera would show her steering wheel popping up. Luckily she would remove her hands from the wheel prior to this happening.

“Yeah, bummer,” she said. “It kind of felt like the IndyCar days when you are close a couple of times. It’s just frustrating when that’s the case. What are you going to do? There was an accident happening in front of me, and the best thing that you can do is try and get around it. I haven’t seen a replay, but I know there was an accident in front of me.”

The next race for the NASCAR Nationwide Series is next Saturday afternoon at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

In the meantime, keep an eye out for penalties coming from Joey Logano, who failed post race inspection, and Austin Dillon, who failed post qualifying inspection.

Matt Kenseth climbs out of his car after winning the pole position during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Friday, July 6, 2012, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Terry Renna)

2012 Daytona 500 champion, Matt Kenseth claimed the Coors Light Pole Award for Saturday night’s Coke Zero 400 with a lap of 46.781 seconds, 192.386 mph. However, the story of the qualifying was Tony Stewart, who would have started second and was on the pole for much of the qualifying session, but failed post qualifying inspection and will start at the rear of the field. Stewart had a similar issue like Austin Dillon in the NASCAR Nationwide Series earlier on Friday with the open cooling hose in the cockpit. For those not tech savy, the cooling hose is capable of providing an aerodynamic advantage. Expect NASCAR to hand penalties down to the No. 14 team early next week. Coverage for the Coke Zero 400 presented by Coca-Cola starts with the Countdown to Green at 6:30PM EST on TNT. The green flag is expected to drop at approximately 7:49PM EST.

Starting Lineup:

  1. Matt Kenseth
  2. Tony Stewart
  3. Ryan Newman
  4. Kasey Kahne
  5. Greg Biffle
  6. Jeff Gordon
  7. Bill Elliott
  8. Casey Mears
  9. AJ Allmendinger
  10. Brad Keselowski Read the rest of this entry »
For the second week in a row, Austin Dillon’s Black No. 3 is on the Coors Light Pole this time for the Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway.  Dillon was able to capture the pole with a speed of 177.340mph. This makes up for an eventful week for the Rookie of the Year candidate who won last Friday night’s race at Kentucky Speedway only to lose six points after failing post-race inspection.
Fans can watch the Subway Jalapeno 250 on ESPN with coverage beginning at 7pm EST.

*Breaking News:  Austin Dillon’s No. 3 failed post qualifying inspection and will start at the rear of the field for Friday night’s Subway Jalapeno 250. An illegal open cooling hose was discovered under the cockpit of the car. Expect penalties early next week.

Starting Lineup:
1. Austin Dillon
2. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
3. Cole Whitt
4. Danica Patrick
5. Kevin Harvick
6. Kurt Busch
7. Brad Keselowski
8. Mike Wallace
9. Joey Logano
10. Brian Scott
11. Bobby Santos
12. Johanna Long
13. Clint Bowyer
14. Elliott Sadler
15. James Buescher
16. Mike Bliss
17. Sam Hornish Jr.
18. Michael Annett
19. John Wes Townley
20. Brad Sweet
21. Kyle Busch (MY RACE PICK)
22. Justin Allgaier
23. Tayler Malsam
24. Jeff Green
25. Casey Roderick
26. Joe Nemechek
27. Eric McClure
28. Josh Richards
29. Danny Efland
30. Jason Bowles
31. Jeffrey Earnhardt
32. Blake Koch
33. Bryan Silas
34. Jeremy Clements
35. Robert Richardson Jr.
36. T.J. Bell
37. Mike Harmon
38. Timmy Hill
39. Stephen Leicht
40. Josh Wise
41. Joey Gase
42. Erik Darnell
43. Chase Miller

By Terry Renna, AP
David Ragan holds up the winner’s trophy as he celebrates after winning the NASCAR Coke Zero 400 auto race at Daytona International Speedway.

Let’s get ready for some NASCAR racing from Daytona International Speedway. This weekend the Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series’ take to the 2.5 mile asphalt tri-oval for some night racing.  Last year, Roush-Fenway Racing’s David Ragan was able to capture his first Sprint Cup Series victory. Now that he is with Front Row Racing can he do it again? And on the Nationwide side, we have Austin Dillon trying to bounce back after losing points when his No. 3 failed post race inspection following his first win in the series.

Thursday, July 5, 2012:

2:30 PM NASCAR Nationwide Series Practice SPEED
4:00PM NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Practice SPEED
5:30PM NASCAR Nationwide Series Final Practice SPEED
6:30PM NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Final Practice SPEED
8:00PM Trackside SPEED
(Guests Include Cole Whitt and AJ Allmendinger)

NASCAR Nationwide Series:

2011 Pole Winner: Kevin Harvick
2011 Winner: Joey Logano
Laps: 100
Distance:  250 Miles

Friday, July 6, 2012:

3:30PM NASCAR Live SPEED
4:00PM NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Qualifying SPEED
6:30PM Trackside Re-Air SPEED
(Guests include Cole Whitt and AJ Allmendinger)
7:30PM NASCAR Nationwide Series Race SPEED
(Subway Jalapeno 250. In-Race Reporter Austin Dillon)

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series:

2011 Pole Winner: Mark Martin
2011 Winner: David Ragan
Laps:  
160
Distance: 400 Miles

Saturday, July 7, 2012:

11:00 AM Trackside Re-Air SPEED
(Guests include Cole Whitt and AJ Allmendinger)
3:30PM NASCAR Performance SPEED
4:00PM NASCAR Speed Center SPEED
4:30PM NASCAR RaceDay SPEED
6:30PM Countdown to Green TNT
7:30PM NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race TNT
(Coke Zero 400 presented by Coca-Cola)
11:00PM NASCAR Victory Lane SPEED

*As Always, All Times are Eastern Standard Time*

By Geoff Burke, Getty Images for NASCAR
David Ragan celebrates his first career Sprint Cup victory at the Coke Zero 400.

Brad Keselowski definitely established himself as a championship contender after winning his third race of the season on Saturday night at Kentucky Speedway. If the regular season were to end today, Keselowski would start the Chase with the No. 1 spot. Could he get No. 4 this Saturday night at Daytona International Speedway?

Currently, Matt Kenseth leads Dale Earnhardt, Jr. by 11 points with nine races remaining until the Chase for the Sprint Cup. Wouldn’t it be awesome to see Earnhardt in victory lane this weekend, after all he finished second in this year’s Daytona 500 to Kenseth.

Last year, David Ragan was able to grab his first Sprint Cup Series victory at the same track that took away a Daytona 500 victory.  The race went into overtime but Ragan didn’t mind. In in the end he was able to final celebrate in victory lane. Read the rest of this entry »

While Austin Dillon may have won his first career series race last weekend at Kentucky Speedway and look the points lead, it was his post race inspection failure that is still making the headlines. On Monday, Dillon was docked six driver pints, putting him four points behind his RCR teammate Elliott Sadler. Could Dllon be the first NNS champion to win a championship for another series the previous year?

This weekend serves at the qualifying race for the NASCAR Nationwide Series Dash 4 Cash bonus program that awards the highest-finishing eligible driver in each of this season’s four D4C races a $100,000 bonus on top of their race winners. The bonus races are New Hampshire, Chicagoland, Indianapolis, and Iowa.

The rules are simple:

The four highest-finishing NNS driver championship contenders at Daytona will be eligible for the $100,000 D4C bonus at New Hampshire. The driver who finishes the highest among those four at NHMS – he or she does not have to win the race – will win the first $100,000 bonus and also become eligible for the next Dash 4 Cash race at Chicagoland. The next three highest-finishing series regulars at New Hampshire will then be eligible for Chicagoland, and these same rules will apply for Indianapolis and Iowa. Should the same driver capture the three previous D4C bonuses and win the Iowa race outright, he or she will win an extra $600,000, bringing the total payout to $1 million. Read the rest of this entry »

Back in the day when ESPN the Magazine came out, you got a free subscription to this thing called “ESPN: Insider”.  WOW, this is awesome!  In 2000, when there were like 4 other sports websites, it was.  After all, ESPN was essentially the only place for up to the minute sports news and analysis.  I remember asking friends if they had insider, just to see if I was the only cool one in the bunch who had access to…NEWSPAPER ARTICLES FROM ANOTHER CITY OTHER THAN NEW YORK!!!!!

Seriously.  This is what it was.  You got to read articles from the LA Times, Chicago Sun, and so on.  So it wasn’t really that big of a deal.  Fast forward to the mid 2000’s and ESPN got smart.  They started rolling out SABR geeks into their rotation of “Insiders”.  So if you wanted more hardcore analysis of stats and player rankings from a bunch of guys who haven’t seen any women’s private parts since the time their mother gave birth to them, this was right up your alley…all for a small monthly fee.  Just imagine, for $1.99 per month (now it’s up to $7.95 if you go month by month), you could dominate your friends in all of the “who’s better than who” conversations, and back it up with hip stats like OPS and WHIP!

“No way dude, Kobe’s PER in the 4th quarter is so much higher than Lebron’s!”…and now everyone within a 4 mile radius looks at you like you have 3 heads.  Honestly, who gives a shit what John Hollinger’s “PER” rating is for Kobe?  Ok maybe other than the idiot who’s paying for the service. Read the rest of this entry »

Austin Dillon tips his cowboy hat after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, Ky., Friday, June 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Garry Jones)

While Austin Dillon may have won his first NASCAR Nationwide Series race on Friday night at Kentucky Speedway, many of NASCAR’s fans are thinking it should be stripped after the No. 3 of Richard Childress Racing was found to be in violation of the NASCAR rulebook. After winning the Feed the Children 300, Dillon’s black No. 3 was found to be too low for NASCAR’s standard’s.

On Monday, NASCAR announced penalties for the No. 3. The No. 3 car of RCR was found to be in violation of Sections 12-1(actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4J (any determination by NASCAR officials that race equipment used in the event does not conform to NASCAR rules); and 20A-12.8.1C (body height requirements – car failed to meet the minimum rear car heights) of the 2012 NASCAR rule book.

Penalties included Danny Stockman, Jr., Dillon’s crew chief, to be fined $10,000, while owner Morgan Shepherd and driver Austin Dillon have been penalized with the loss of six championship owner and driver points, respectively. In addition, Stockman and Robert Strmiska, the car chief, will remain on probation until December 31.

Dillon now trails points leader Elliott Sadler (his Richard Childress Racing teammate) by four points.