Good morning Gabbers, gawkers and others to my NASCAR update. We'll be talking about Canada possibly getting more race dates, Allmendingers woes, Sponsorship happenings, and just racing in general. It's been a tad humid here in PA. The locusts are so loud I can't sit in my carport to have coffee and a paper. The squirrels have taken to destroying my garden 2 years running despite the fact that there are bird baths in all the surrounding yards as well as bird feeders AND the one neighbor feeds them peanuts, and other stuff. These squirrels are fat. I'm thinking squirrel pot pie or Kabob's on the grill? Oh yeah. I am declaring war. Now where's that Acme phone number?
ARMY NATIONAL GUARD
Well, despite all the jawing back and forth for and against military sponsorship in racing the Army National Guard has re - upped with Dale Jr. Next year they plan on sponsoring 20 races. That's 2 more than this year. The Daytona 500 is included in those 20 races too.
WHERE IS LOGANO TO LAND?
Reports say Joey Logano is one of the drivers Penske is considering for the #22 car that Allmendinger has vacated. No official announcement has been made yet but Kenseth will be in a car at Joe Gibbs Racing which means more sponsorship is needed to keep Logano in the car. Logano has been with JGR since he was 16 years old coming up through the ranks. So there are loyalty issues on both sides and much has been invested in turning Logano into a Cup racer. Joe says he doesn't want to lose Logano but an announcement either way is coming in about 2 weeks.
Mean while JGR has filed a law suit against Trans Lux for non payment. They sponsored Logano's race winning Nationwide car in California but didn't pay up. Trans Lux is the maker of video display boards and score boards for high school fields to arena's. They were supposed to be on Denny Hamlin's Cup car at a race this fall.
JERRY GRANT PASSING
Jerry Grant passed away on August 12th at the age of 77. He was the first driver to turn an official lap faster than 200 mph in an Indy Car in 1972 at 201.414 mph in Ontario, Calif. He was in the Indianapolis 500 a total of 10 times. He raced in 19 NASCAR Cup races from 1965 to 1974.
MORE CANADIAN RACES?
It would seem that our Canadian neighbors are enjoying the Nationwide races that have been held there. In fact there's a Nationwide race there this weekend at the Circuit Gilles Vileneuve. A road course that draws big enthusiastic crowds and they race rain or shine. NASCAR is experimenting with the rain racing there.
CEO of NASCAR Brian France is talking with the track owners about bringing a Cup race to this track. BUT he doesn't want to add a race to the schedule. So that means a track loses a race. So which one?
Ron Fellows is a new co - owner of Mosport International Raceway in Ontario, CA and wants to have a truck or Nationwide race added to his track. Both truck and Nationwide could add more races. So this is possible.
So it's off to Canada we go?
NEWMAN GETS A NEW SPONSOR
The October Hollywood Casino 400 Kansas race sees Newman with a new paint scheme. Code 3 Associates will be on his car for that weekend. This sponsor is a nonprofit organization specializing in animal rescue and recovery in disaster areas. Newman is big on animal causes. He owns several dogs so this is a sponsor that hits close to his heart.
Newman still has no contract for next year but insists even though sponsorship woes are ongoing that he's not trying to go back to Penske for the ride in the #22. His goal is to stay with Stewart Haas Racing in the #39.
PENSKE RACING ON
Sam Hornish Jr has jumped into the #22 car since Allmendinger was released from it but not without issues. Hornish is full time in Nationwide and is 3rd in the points so he certainly wants to win the Nationwide championship. Nationwide is in Canada this weekend. A bit of a stretch to be in 2 places at once. So Parker Kilgerman will be practicing in and qualifying the #22 car till Hornish gets back from Canada.
Hornish will have to start from the back no matter where Parker qualifies the car per NASCAR rules. I'm guessing they wanted a good pit stall choice because they could use the top 35 owners points to secure him a starting position. You don't lose your pit stall choice even if you have to start from the back.
Parker Kilgerman will be driving for Red Horse Racing in the Truck Series at Michigan as well. He sees no issues with doing double duty and feels confident because he's tested Cup cars before. I'm thinking this may be an audition for the #22 car ride next year.
SPEAKING OF ALLMENDINGER
Insiders say NASCAR doubts AJ will be done with the Road To Recovery program in August. It is thought that AJ had more that one of whatever he took and on more than one occasion because he tested so high. They can't pin point the exact drug or brand but they know he tested too high to have been a one time occurrence. This was my thinking as well when he finally told his story.
I still say he thought up a story and practiced it in the mirror till it sounded believable. Saw his video interview with Marty Smith on Sunday before the race. Marty believes his story. I'm saying well rehearsed and I'm not buying it. Whatever the case may be, AJ is determined to get through the program and get back to Cup level racing. I'm sure the whispers in the Cup garage have more info than we're getting. He's got a tough road to Cup racing when he's done with the Road To Recovery.
If you want to see the interview with Marty go to You Tube and type in "Allmendinger On Failed Drug Test".
Last weekends race at The Glen had a wild finish. Due to Bobby Labonte driving the last 20 laps with his motor smoking and dropping oil on the track, there were quite a few drivers that didn't get the finish they wanted or deserved. Those that spun out were Dale Jr ending his day in 28th , one lap down and dropping to 4th in the Cup points, Stewart ending his day in 19th, Gordon ending his day in 21st, and Kyle B who was in 1st on the white flag lap and ended his day in 7th.
Ambrose and Keselowski went on to have the battle on the legends. They beat and banged their way around the track on the last lap to the finish. High fives and back slaps between the #2 and #9 crews all around at the end. Can't say it was a boring finish. Still love the Kurt Busch vs Ricky Craven finish the best but this finish will be on the high light reels along with that one for years to come.
Why didn't NASCAR throw the yellow flag for a caution to clean up? Nobody knows. They say that the drivers just used up their brakes and tires and that no official reported oil on the track. Funny thing is that at practice Friday at Michigan 10 minutes in they yellow flagged practice because they thought they saw fluid on the track. Hhhhhmmmmmmmm.
How did my fantasy league picks do? Well, Brian Vickers blew his motor on the 1st lap. Then on lap 26 Kurt Busch lost his entire wheel assembly. My saving grace was choosing Ambrose and Keselowski. They came in 1st & 2nd. I'm thinking that Stewart, Gordon, Montoya, Dale Jr, Kahne, Truex, and Hamlin all having issues helped me out too. I'm sure by looking at all the movement in the league that they chose those drivers and I REMAIN #1 on Yahoo.
You can see the last 3 laps if you go to You Tube......http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sv-BndcjVw or type in....2012 Watkins Glen Finger Lakes 355 - Final 3 laps Wild Finish (HD).....AMFForumvideos is the channel. It has several videos from the race.
MICHIGAN - PURE MICHIGAN 400
This weekend we're at a very high speed track. Mark Martin grabbed the pole position making him the oldest driver on record to get a pole at Michigan International Speedway. He ties Bill Elliot for career poles at 55 poles AND he's driving the #55 car. That's so Twilight Zone.
Besides Parker Kilgerman subbing for Hornish in the #22, David Reutimann is subbing for Kyle Busch who just took off Saturday morning for the Canada Nationwide race. He will get to keep his spot because he qualified his car.
Jimmie Johnson will be joining Hornish in the back at the start of the race because of an engine change during first practice.
NASCAR decided to allow the teams to scuff their tires during 2nd practice if the felt like it. Teams are allowed so many sets of tires. Scuffing the tires is when they put a set of tires on and drive 2 - 5 laps on them. This heats the tire up and then they harden so they less prone to blistering. Just one more trick to dial in a car for the race.
My fantasy picks this week are Kenseth - Dale Jr - Ambrose - Hornish. Wish me luck.
EBAY NO NO'S
Well folks, as of September 1st you will no longer be able to buy that magic demon destroying potion for $51 dollars on eBay. That's right, no more magic items to be sold on eBay. That means no potions, voodoo dolls, hexes, spells, curses, prayers, blessings, psychic readings, tarot card readings, etc can no longer be purchased on eBay. You can however buy Holy Water. BUT that 800 year old village in Tuscany is still up for bids. I'm thinking of packing up and shipping all my squirrels there. Wonder if squirrel voodoo dolls exist?
Ever wanted to know what driving through the New York Lincoln tunnel at 190 mph looks like? Go to You Tube and type in David Coulthard drives Red Bull through Lincoln Tunnel. He wears a helmet cam. Awesome stuff. Again I apologize for not being able to create links and move videos but I can tell you where they are.
Well that's all folks. Hope your Sunday is sunny and full of family or whatever makes you happy. Thank you for stopping by.........