Tagged with "Chicago"
NCAA Tourney Talk 3/30/14
Category: NCAA
Tags: NCAATournament CentralMissouriMules CollegeBasketball IllinoisChicagoFlames FloridaGators WisconsinBadgers

As the various tournaments have wound their way down towards the crowning of a champion, it has been easier for me to actually witness game action on TV and follow the "lesser" tournaments on TV.

I wrote about Bentley's D2 women's championship and more in Sunday Musings #140 but there has been a number of other tourney developments that I wanted to babble on about as well.

NCAA WOMEN

I saw bits and pieces of the first three games of the Sweet 16 of the women's tournament. The first two games saw Baylor and Notre Dame advance relatively easy.

Surprisingly, it was the UConn vs. BYU that held people in suspense...at least for a little while.

The BYU team trailed by only 1 point at halftime, they were solid defensively and unlike a lot of teams didn't play in fear of the Lady Huskies. Sadly, a 5 minute streak of no offense in the second half doomed them and UConn came away with a 19 point win.

I didn't see the Texas A&M game against DePaul but they won by 19 points.

Today's games to close out the Sweet 16 and set up the Elite Eight should prove very interesting. Those games are:

South Carolina vs. North Carolina, Penn State vs. Stanford, Louisville vs. West Virginia and Tennessee vs. Maryland.

NCAA MEN

Florida knocked off this year's Cinderella, Dayton, by 10 points. It looked like they were going to have a cake walk with a 14 point lead and all the momentum going into halftime but the Flyers made more of a game of things in the 2nd half.

But it would be hard to top the Wisconsin-Arizona overtime thriller in the late game yesterday. I didn't see the whole game but both teams were matching each other shot for shot throughout the game.

A controversial call ended up helping the Badgers pick up the 64-63 win, but regardless of how it ended, it was one hell of a game.

So Florida and Wisconsin are onto the Final Four. I had both of them getting their so my bracket is still very much alive.

Today's games are Michigan State vs. UConn (by seeding, the new Cinderella) and Michigan vs. Kentucky. I have a feeling these are going to be barn burner type of games. The Midwest Region is dead for me since I had Louisville advancing to the Final Four, but if Michigan State wins I'd have 3 of the last four correct.

And thus far, I'm still in 1st place in the YouGabSports group bracket challenge on ESPN.

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL INVITATIONAL

The WBI tournament final saw the Illinois-Chicago Flames defeat the Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks 73-64 to capture the championship.

Last season, the Flames finished 9-21. With a final record of 26-9, the completed the best turnaround in Division 1 this season.

Rachel Story (pictured below 1st) scored 27 points in her final game to help lead UIC to the win, but it was Ruvanna Campbell (pictured below 2nd) earning MVP honors with 18 points, 12 rebounds and a tourney record 8 blocks.

Your 2014 WBI Champions:

MEN'S DIVISION 2 NCAA

Daylen Robinson scored 21 points and Dillon Deck had 16 points and 10 rebounds as the Central Missouri Mules beat West Liberty 84-77 to capture their second ever Division 2 national championship.

Defense played a huge role in the now 30-5 CMU win, as they held West Liberty 24 points below their average.

Your D2 Men's National Champions:

I'm Just Saying...Scott having a brain drain with this blog
Category: User Showcase
Tags: Mark Skiba Florida State ACC SEC Yankees A-Roid Jay Cutler Clark Chicago Cubs Christian Laettner Frank Thomas Greg Maddux Tom Glavine

Scott can’t shut up today…I got a lot to say so lets get started with

I’m Just saying…..

 

Mark Skiba came within 13 seconds of winning $50,000, as Florida State beat Auburn, in an exciting game, 34-31. Last January Mark’s dad was on vacation in Las Vegas when he placed a $100 bet for his son on Auburn to win the National Title at 500-to-1 odds.


Congratulations to Florida State. Thanks goodness the SEC streak is over!!


Not again. DeSean Jackson is seeking another pay raise. He has three years remaining on his contract which pays him $50 million over the duration of the contract. This is the same guy who came out, a couple of years ago, and said he wasn’t giving it all he had because he wanted a new contract. I hope the Eagles don’t renegotiate.


As a Yankee fan, I hope New York eats the contract of A-Roid and release him. Let another team sign him and have all the headaches that follow him around.


Seven-year, $126 million dollar contract. Wow, what great quarterback got that contract? Jay Cutler!! What the %&(@#%*. If he is worth that much, how much is Russell Wilson or Andrew Luck worth???? Stand buy for huge pay for elite, or above average quarterbacks.


Does Dion Sanders have to play in the pro bowl??? Please say it ain’t so.


 

This is Clark and he is the new mascot of the Chicago Cubs. Oh boy, like this is going to help them win.


 

Christian Laettner’s famous shirt was sold at auction for $119,500. Believe-it-or-not, this is the second-highest price for a game-worn basketball jersey. In 2011, a DR. J Virginia Squires game-used jersey sold for $190,414.


 

The Hall of Fame has three new outstanding players entering the shrine in Frank Thomas, Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine.

Thomas had a .301 average, 2,468 hits, 521 homeruns, 1,494 runs and 1,704 Rbi’s, 1,667 walks and 1,397 strikeouts. 1993, 1994 AL MVP, 1993 MLB Player of the Year.

Glavine won 60% of his games he started with a record of 305-203. He had a era of 3.54 with 25 shutouts, 2,607 strikeouts and 1,500 walks. Glavine won 2 Cy Young awards and was 1995 World Series MVP.

In his 23 years, Maddux won 61% of his games started with a record of 355-227 and a ERA of 3.16. He pitched 35 shoutouts, walked 999 batters and 3,371 strikeouts. Maddux won 4 consecutive CY Young awards, 4 time Sporting News Pitcher of the Year.

It is ashamed that Craig Biggio missed it by 2 votes.


Speaking of Hall of Fame, I agree with TheBeezer (did I just say that). Read his rant on the HOF selection here

http://www.yougabsports.com/pt/Monday-Moaning--1-13-14/blog.htm.

He is right. There is no reason why a player who has a outstanding career can’t receive 100% of the votes. Aaron, Mays, Ruth, Maddux…etc, etc. all deserved to be admitted with 100% of the votes. There has got to be a better way to select players.

Wow, did I say a mouth full. Have a great week.

NASCAR Update And Other Fast Stuff 9-22-13
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: NASCAR Chicagoland New Hampshire Kenseth Truex MWR Spin Gate Fallout Montoya

                          

Goooooooooooooood morning!!! Welcome Gabbers and others to my NASCAR updates and other fast stuff. Looky up there. The #3 is back. Well next year it will be back in Sprint Cup racing. Richard Childress kept that number under lock and key all these years since Dale Sr's death. Said only another Earnhardt or one of his grandsons would get to race with it. That time has come. Next year Austin Dillon rides with that number. Dale Jr says he's ok with that. So I guess we'll just be moving on from here.

SPIN GATE FALLOUT

Michael Waltrip had a press conference to talk about the after math of the spin and Vickers questionable pit stop. He was asked if there was a master plan. He said no it was spir of the moment. Asked if he's worried about the future of MWR. Said yes but his partners said they'd stick with him. His sponsor, NAPA however will be leaving at the end of the season. Didn't blame them and wasn't overly surprised by their decision. He said that we put them in that spot. He does expect 5 Hour Energy to stay even though that too is still in the air. He's asked Truex to be patient in getting a new sponsor but will not stand in his way if he wants to go. Still maintains that Bowyer didn't spin on purpose.

Truex says he's been happy at MWR and doesn't know what is going on for next season. Asked if he'd go with NAPA to another team he said it was possible but at this time he knows nothing of where he'll end up if he were to not have a ride next year with MWR.

I just want to say from what I know of Truex, he's a low key guy who never seems to ruffle feathers on the track. Been watching him since his Nationwide days where he won 2 championships. I REALLY thought he'd be a big mover in Cup but luck has not been on his side. He's an example of a talented driver who just couldn't surround himself with the right people or get on the right team. 

For Bowyer's part I still believe he did what he was told but regretted it the second he did it. I've listened to lots of interviews and several podcasts with him and I will say this. He has walked head long into every media fire storm thrown at him and didn't waver in his answers and didn't play the blame game. I admire that he didn't hide. I'm sure he had choice words for his boss in private though. Vickers on the other hand, I've seen nothing from him.

FREE M&M'S........ONLY IF KYLE BUSCH WINS CHAMPIONSHIP

M&M Mars is the official chocolate of NASCAR. To celebrate if Kyle wins the championship they'll be giving away 1 million bags of M&M's. My son lives in Elizabethtown and I pass M&M Mars every time I go up there. Smells good. 

NEWS OF THE DANICA

On Dec 10th on Fox The Danica will be hosting the American Country Awards with Trace Adkins. She's excited. 

MIKE HELTON SAYS "THERE"S BEEN A SHIFT IN THE PARADIGM" .....So like what is a para whatsit and what is it doing in my NASCAR racing? Must be one of those new fangled gear shifter knobs. 

MONTOYA FOUND A RIDE BUT NOT IN NASCAR

Montoya is excited about his new ride. He'll be driving for Roger Penske in Indy Car with Will Power & Helio Castroneves as team mates. Says he's always wanted to drive for Roger. Montoya has the 1999 Cart Championship, won the 2000 Indianapolis 500 and 11 other races while driving for Chip Gnassi. He also took a Formula 1 ride before returning to Chip Gnassi to drive in NASCAR in 2006. Good luck Montoya. I hope success returns to you.

MOST POPULAR VOTE TIME

It's that time again. Vote for your favorite Cup driver. The Danica is eligible this year. Will she knock Dale Jr off the top where he's been for 10 years? Go to www.MostPopularDriver.com to cast your vote.

NEWMAN TO THE CAT #31

Lost in all the Spinning Gate Pit Stop Fiasco Crap was Newman's happy news. He will be in the Caterpillar #31 Chevy for RCR next year. Burton is officially out and not sure if he'll even race next year. 

Luke Lambert will be his crew chief. Caterpillar said they're happy for Newman to come aboard. He owns several Cat products already so he's familiar with their operation. He's also an outdoors type. This all fits well with Caterpillar customers, dealers and employees. Good luck Newman.

                      

CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY GEICO 400 RECAP

WHAT A LONG ASS RACE!!!!! Actually it wasn't. It just had a 5 hour 10 minute and 21 second rain delay. I almost said screw it and went to bed.......almost. Logano had the pole and the first 109 laps don't really matter any how. It was day light, the motors got hot and then the rain came. Motors cooled down and at 10pm they fired 'em up agin. Bad timing for some. Motors don't like to get hot, cool down and then fire back up in cooler temps and race again. Some went pooooooooof. 

So Kenseth and Johnson square off at the restart. Kenseth takes the lead but Montoya's tire rub from before the rain delay gets worse and it brings out the caution.

Kenseth retakes lead on restart. It's Kenseth - Kyle B - Johnson - Almirola - Kahne

​Lap 146 sees Logano off the pace. May have lost a cylinder. Pit stop confirms it's 2 cylinders. He's told to drive around to see what happens. 

Lap 153 Caution. Cole Whitt up in flames. Told you motors don't like to be reheated. Pooooooooof.

Lap 162 Brian Vickers to the pits. No power. Poooooooof.

Caution for debris on Lap167. Logano told to keep RPMs at 1100. Pit road is wild. Blaney drives into Harvick's door. Kenseth runs into back of Blaney. Yeley slowed down and Kahne hit him and Dale Jr hit him. Damage must be fixed.

Biffle takes lead and Gordon goes to the pits for a flat left rear.

With 91 to go Logano's motor finally goes pooooooof.

88 to go and Kyle leads. 

56 to go and Biffle's motor goes pooooooooooof.

39 to go and Dale Jr goes up in flames. Big flames. Pooooooooof.

20 to go and Hamlin's motor goes poooooooooof. Kenseth takes the lead and wins the race.

Top 15 finishers - Kenseth - Kyle B - Harvick - Kurt B - Johnson - Gordon - Keselowski - Stenhouse - Bowyer - Newman - Edwards - Kahne - Almirola - Burton - Ambrose

                    

NEW HAMPSHIRE SPEEDWAY - SYLVANIA 300 PREVIEW

If it don't rain but I bet it will we'll be seeing this race Sunday afternoon. Newman has the pole. Other celebrations would be Mark Martin's 875th start, Kenseth's 500th start and David Gilliland's 250th start. And The Danica tacks another start onto her historic record. Don't expect a win though. 

This was a fuel mileage race in July. My most handsome Knight of the Mobile 1 had the win but a late caution put it into over time. And back he went. The Danica spun out with her Honey Bunny Stenhouse and not so Honey Bunny Kvapil. Logano spun and slapped the wall on lap 4. Heavy damage. Johnson started from the back due to failed inspection. Hamlin wrecked. Newman and Kurt spun out and Kahne hit Kenseth in the rear when Kenseth tried to avoid the spin. Gordon spun off Menards bumper. And Vickers won.

Top 15 finishers - Vickers - Kyle B - Burton - Keselowski - Almirola - Johnson - Harvick - Edwards - Kenseth - Gordon - Kahne - McMurray - Bowyer - Dale Jr - Biffle

So this is race #2 in the Chase. We'll see mostly the Chase drivers in the top 10 finish now. There were 8 in the top 10 last week. I still don't trust picking Gordon. I almost did but deleted him along with Kahne and Hamlin. Hamlin is great at this track but not this year. Too hurt to focus. Gordon and Kahne may both find the focus and steady hands they need to make a run for that trophy but there again I say consult your local psychic for a reading on that choice.

I expect Johnson, Dale Jr, Bowyer, Newman, Kyle B, Edwards, Biffle, Harvick and Kurt B to be in the top 10. Your Chase drivers. Others to look for would be Burton, Keselowski, Logano, Almirola, Truex and Menard. Maybe Montoya or McMurray will show up. Been wanting to write about the EGR break out performance. Seems Montoya is almost there but........not quite.

Stenhouse had a top 10 last week. Must be having a break through. I expect David Ragan and David Gilliland in the top 20. Possibly Bobby Labonte too. He's back from his bicycle accident this week. 

So it's raining outside. Good thing it's out there. Says 80% chance tomorrow in New Hampshire. Wonder how many football games will be effected by rain? Some it may help. Love those mud bowls. The Redskins could be prime candidates for one. 

Hope every one is dry, your grill is fired up, and your remote is ready. I'll leave you with my new favorite it's so simple it's funny phrase. "It's new because it wasn't here before now"

And I'm outta here.........

 

 

 

 

NASCAR Update And Other Fast Stuff 9-15-13
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: NASCAR Richmond Chicagoland Logano Gordon Truex Newman Front Row Motorsports Penske Racing Bowyer Vickers NASCAR spin pit deal making ga

                            

Well hey there and howdy too. Welcome Gabbers and others to my NASCAR updates and other fast stuff. Before I get to the racing stuff I saw this picture and I was blown away by the dedication of our USPS delivery people. If you haven't seen it yet, it's from Colorado. They're being drowned out there by all the rain and this dedicated postal worker.....neither rain nor sleet nor dark of night....is delivering the mail. Wow. Gives me pause and I guess they mean it. Thoughts and prayers to those folks out west. Hopefully the Red Cross and other organizations are set up or on their way to your rescue. 

SUSPECT SPIN - NO NEED TO PIT - DEAL MAKING - RESTART  CONTROVERSY

So I'm sure most of you have heard about this little issue going on in NASCAR. It involves a suspect spin by Bowyer, pitting for no reason by both Bowyer and new team mate Vickers, a deal made in the closing laps for track position to get Logano in the Chase and a horrid restart that Edwards clearly jumped but wasn't made to give it back. So here's the long, short and skinny on this race and controversy.

So it started with the green flag at Richmond on Saturday night. Johnson, Bowyer, Harvick, Edwards, Kyle B & Kenseth were locked into the Chase by vertue of points and wins. So now Dale Jr, Logano, Biffle, Kurt B, Gordon, Kahne, Truex, Newman & long shot Keselowski are in the mix all within 59 points of each other and all race long depending where they were dictated where they were in the points. As Truex said all race long my crew chief is telling me your in, now your out by 1, now your in, no now your out which went on till the last lap. And that's exactly how it went for all of them except Kahne. He was outside the top 10 but had 2 W's so that meant he was getting at least a Wild Card but the score would be better inside the top 10 than with a Wild Card. He would have 6 more points if he were in the top 10 and he'd be higher up in the order. 

So Gordon had the pole to start and grabbed the lead right out of the gate. He knew he HAD to win. No ifs ands or buts about it. Win or no Chase spot. Logano in 9th was fighting with Hamlin in 8th over position. He finally gave up when his tires did. No grip and losing ground. 

By lap 50 Keselowski who also had to win or no Chase spot had taken the lead. 

Lap 66 is when Kurt B took the lead. Johnson had to start last due to the birth of his daughter he wasn't there to qualify or practice. He's made it to 33rd. By lap 84 Logano is 25th and screaming to his crew chief for tires. 

Lap 90 Logano goes a lap down and to the pits for tires. Everyone else follows and Johnson was too fast so he's doing a pass thru penalty. Ouch.

Kenseth now leads at lap 105.

Lap 203 Logano goes down a 2nd lap. Gordon is 15th. Jounson is 3 laps down in 22nd. Keselowski leads.

Lap 224 Gordon says he's coming to pit road because he has too. Diagnosis? Loose wheel. He's 2 laps down in 25th. Keselowski still leads followed by Kurt B, Kyle B, Bowyer and Burton.

Lap 242 Johnson is now down 24 laps. He had a loose alternator cable which destroyed his battery and had to be change in the garage area. No worries though. He's locked in.

Lap 267 CAUTION and Gordon gets the lucky dog (free pass)

83 to go sees Bowyer, Harvick, Kurt B, Burton, Keselowski and my fantasy leagues humming along.

But NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.....With 57 to go and half way through green flag pit stops Johnson has his right front go down and a caution comes out. He wasn't on my fantasy league but I was mad because this threw a major curve ball into my fantasy leagues AND it benefited one on the verge of not making the Chase team mate Gordon. Very surprised in all the comment sections of articles dealing with this that it was mentioned one time that I saw. Johnson was 24 laps down, locked in the Chase and only needed to limp around the track. No need or urgency to run your front end into the track to pick up spots unless to help your team mate get in the Chase. 

So now those that already pitted when the race was green are mired back behind those that pitted when the race was under caution. So now Edwards is now in the lead followed by Menard, Kurt B, McMurray, Newman, Biffle, Stenhouse & Kenseth for your top 8.

So with 30 to go Newman is on the hunt for a W. He's told as the drivers are on the track now only a win will due. No choice. Go get it. And he does. With 20 to go he's 2nd. With 13 to go he's on Edwards bumper. With 10 to go he gets the lead.

With 8 to go Bowyer goes for a spin...all by himself. CAUTION. Everybody pits and Menard is first on the restart with Edwards in 2nd. They take off. Well, Edwards takes off but Menard spins his tires a bit. Edwards clearly beats Menard to the start finish line by half a car length. I still can't understand NASCAR not calling him on it. Especially since they got Johnson 2 times this year.

So Edwards wins the race and the conspiracy theories begin.

Top 15 finishers - Edwards - Kurt B - Newman - McMurray - Menard - Kenseth - Truex - Gordon - Martin - Stenhouse - Harvick - Biffle - Dale Jr - Kahne

​Kurt B's 2nd place finish brings him home 8th in the top 10. No W's but history abounds. He's the first driver in Chase history to come from a single car team. Also the first team based outside of Charlotte to qualify for the Chase. Furniture Row is based in Colorado. Congrats and Good Luck Kurt. 

Right after the race Bowyer is interviewed about his spin and asked if it was deliberate. He says no he thinks something broke or a tires going down. Dale Jr is interviewed and he's saying it's the damndest thing he's ever watched. He was right behind Bowyer and saw him swerving and then go for a lazy spin. All is well till Sunday when the rumors start and the conspiracy theories kick into over drive with the Twittersphere ablaze. By Monday the first accusations come in.

NASCAR finds that they can't prove without a doubt that he spun on purpose, but they can through radio chatter prove that his team mate Vickers came in for tires when he didn't need to. In fact Bowyer came in 2 times before the restart. Once to get tires and once more for a look see on possible damage. Then when the green flag was about to wave for the last 4 laps both were called to pit road. Vickers response was telling. You talking to me? I have a flat? His crew chief said yes and that we need that point. The point he was talking about was for 3rd team mate Truex. With that 1 point Truex has a Wild Card.

Also in those closing laps Logano who had fallen back to 25th and 3 laps down was in need of some help in the form of a spot and a wave around to gain on Gordon. Bowyers spin gave him the wave around. The deal Penske Racing made with Front Row Motorsports for #38 David Gilliland to let Logano pass him gave him that point he needed.

Again radio chatter gave the deal away. Gillilands spotter said that Penske was asking for that spot. Frank Kerr, crew chief for Gilliland asked who asked. The reply was that the big dog and his cronies are all here. So Gilliland let Logano pass him on the last restart and slowed his lap times to keep Logano there. After the race the spotter told them good job and we might get what we're after now. Front Row Motorsports obviously asked for something previously and now expected to get it. Both teams are Fords and they're considered partners.

So Newman was knocked out of the Chase because he and Truex were tied for one of the Wild Cards. NASCAR had to go to 2nd place wins for the tie breaker. Gordon is bumped out by 1 point. Bowyer, Dale Jr & Kurt B make it in with no wins. Keselowski, last years champ is out.

So after all the interviews and radio chatter reviewing NASCAR passes down a huge fine to Michael Waltrip Racing. It's the biggest ever. A $300,000, General Manager Ty Norris who was Vickers spotter and made the call is suspended indefinitely, all 3 teams are docked 50 points and all 3 crew chiefs are on probation till Dec 31st. The 50 points knocks Truex out of the Chase and puts Newman in.

So lots more whining, interviewing and audio reviewing goes on and NASCAR announces penalties again. Both Penske Racing and Front Row Motorsports are on probation till Dec 31st. No fines? Yup. No fines. 

On Friday it is announced that Gordon has been added as the 13th driver in the Chase. 

I personally wasn't upset about the deal Penske & Front Row made. It's unspoken and well known that the manufacturers and the teams make deals all the time for track position or other favors. Case in point. When at a super speedway in the old cars Gordon asked for Trevor Bayne to tandem draft with him on the restart. Trevor replied through the spotter that he would but at the last second it was conveyed to him that Kenseth needed a drafting partner and Trevor had to go. Why? Gordon drove a Chevy. Trevor and Kenseth were in Fords. Both Ford and Roush denied team orders after the race and Trevor looked like a shmuck. But we all know the truth. And so does NASCAR and I think that probation till Dec 31st was a slap on the wrist to get their attention. 

New rules have been passed down via a 20 minute meeting. Notables are that only one spotter per team may be on the roof from now on. Mr Penske and his buddies are no longer allowed up there. Only 2 analog style radios per spotter allowed. No digital radios. Cameras will be installed to watch for deal making. All drivers must race to 100% of their ability. Team orders are now banned. New clarifying restart rules to be announced Sunday in the drivers meeting.

Pretty much it's mind your own business and drive. I didn't read the transcript but that's what I'm getting out of it. I'm still mad at Johnson, Vickers and Bowyer. I say Johnson drove his car with the intent of bringing out the caution but was smart enough to get his tire to pop. Bowyer spun on purpose. Vickers for his part resisted but I guess those team orders win out. Mark Martin said he was glad he was out of that mess and over at SHR. Me too. I hope this explains everything. Still pisses me off.

CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY GEICO 400

This would be our first stop in the Chase. Logano has the pole. Kyle B is going for the 3 Sweep again. He took the truck race and dominated the Nationwide race. So that's 1, 2 and could it be 3? Logano got 2nd, Dale Jr 5th, Vickers 6th, Kenseth 7th and Harvick 9th in the Nationwide race. Now these are different cars and you can't read too much into their finishes against inferior drivers but seat time is seat time. There is something to be gained by running companion races.

Last years top 15 finishers were Keselowski - Johnson - Kahne - Kyle B - Newman - Stewart - Logano - Dale Jr - Truex - Bowyer - Hornish - Harvick - Biffle - Martin - Menard

So as usual I'm going to say take Gordon or Kahne at your own risk. Hamlin is so distracted from his back pain and the world caving in on his racing career that I'd say skip him too. As far as the MWR guys. That would be Bowyer, Vickers and Truex, they're awesome picks but maybe not this week. NASCAR might be playing with them. Doing things like drawing out pre race inspection so they almost miss the start of the race like they did to Logano and Keselowski towards the beginning of the season. So this situation may light a fire under their asses or it may bring them down. The fans can be tough at driver intros.

All your Chasers except for Bowyer qualified in the top 20. Some lower tier guys to look at would be Montoya starts 3rd and McMurray starts 27th. These 2 have been showing up lately. Almirola, Menard, Stenhouse, Burton, David Ragan, Mears, Gilliland and Allmendinger have been giving the fantasy players some bang for their buck too. The Danica qualified 23rd. She finished 25th here last year. May be worth a look if you want to pick 4 power house guys and have her as the fifth.

Possibilities are endless. I'm 2nd in my money league. I could be first if Bowyer and Vickers hadn't done that BS. I play like a shark in that league. I wants ma muny. I need to get out of this program. It's threatening to go postal on me.  See ya later. And......I'm outta here.....

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            

Well hey there and howdy too. Welcome Gabbers and others to my NASCAR updates and other fast stuff. Before I get to the racing stuff I saw this picture and I was blown away by the dedication of our USPS delivery people. If you haven't seen it yet, it's from Colorado. They're being drowned out there by all the rain and this dedicated postal worker.....neither rain nor sleet nor dark of night....is delivering the mail. Wow. Gives me pause and I guess they mean it. Thoughts and prayers to those folks out west. Hopefully the Red Cross and other organizations are set up or on their way to your rescue. 

SUSPECT SPIN - NO NEED TO PIT - DEAL MAKING - RESTART  CONTROVERSY

So I'm sure most of you have heard about this little issue going on in NASCAR. It involves a suspect spin by Bowyer, pitting for no reason by both Bowyer and new team mate Vickers, a deal made in the closing laps for track position to get Logano in the Chase and a horrid restart that Edwards clearly jumped but wasn't made to give it back. So here's the long, short and skinny on this race and controversy.

So it started with the green flag at Richmond on Saturday night. Johnson, Bowyer, Harvick, Edwards, Kyle B & Kenseth were locked into the Chase by vertue of points and wins. So now Dale Jr, Logano, Biffle, Kurt B, Gordon, Kahne, Truex, Newman & long shot Keselowski are in the mix all within 59 points of each other and all race long depending where they were dictated where they were in the points. As Truex said all race long my crew chief is telling me your in, now your out by 1, now your in, no now your out which went on till the last lap. And that's exactly how it went for all of them except Kahne. He was outside the top 10 but had 2 W's so that meant he was getting at least a Wild Card but the score would be better inside the top 10 than with a Wild Card. He would have 6 more points if he were in the top 10 and he'd be higher up in the order. 

So Gordon had the pole to start and grabbed the lead right out of the gate. He knew he HAD to win. No ifs ands or buts about it. Win or no Chase spot. Logano in 9th was fighting with Hamlin in 8th over position. He finally gave up when his tires did. No grip and losing ground. 

By lap 50 Keselowski who also had to win or no Chase spot had taken the lead. 

Lap 66 is when Kurt B took the lead. Johnson had to start last due to the birth of his daughter he wasn't there to qualify or practice. He's made it to 33rd. By lap 84 Logano is 25th and screaming to his crew chief for tires. 

Lap 90 Logano goes a lap down and to the pits for tires. Everyone else follows and Johnson was too fast so he's doing a pass thru penalty. Ouch.

Kenseth now leads at lap 105.

Lap 203 Logano goes down a 2nd lap. Gordon is 15th. Jounson is 3 laps down in 22nd. Keselowski leads.

Lap 224 Gordon says he's coming to pit road because he has too. Diagnosis? Loose wheel. He's 2 laps down in 25th. Keselowski still leads followed by Kurt B, Kyle B, Bowyer and Burton.

Lap 242 Johnson is now down 24 laps. He had a loose alternator cable which destroyed his battery and had to be change in the garage area. No worries though. He's locked in.

Lap 267 CAUTION and Gordon gets the lucky dog (free pass)

83 to go sees Bowyer, Harvick, Kurt B, Burton, Keselowski and my fantasy leagues humming along.

But NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.....With 57 to go and half way through green flag pit stops Johnson has his right front go down and a caution comes out. He wasn't on my fantasy league but I was mad because this threw a major curve ball into my fantasy leagues AND it benefited one on the verge of not making the Chase team mate Gordon. Very surprised in all the comment sections of articles dealing with this that it was mentioned one time that I saw. Johnson was 24 laps down, locked in the Chase and only needed to limp around the track. No need or urgency to run your front end into the track to pick up spots unless to help your team mate get in the Chase. 

So now those that did not pit yet go in and are mired back behind those that pitted when the race was green. So now Edwards is now in the lead followed by Menard, Kurt B, McMurray, Newman, Biffle, Stenhouse & Kenseth for your top 8.

So with 30 to go Newman is on the hunt for a W. He's told as the drivers are on the track now only a win will due. No choice. Go get it. And he does. With 20 to go he's 2nd. With 13 to go he's on Edwards bumper. With 10 to go he gets the lead.

With 8 to go Bowyer goes for a spin...all by himself. CAUTION. Everybody pits and Menard is first on the restart with Edwards in 2nd. They take off. Well, Edwards takes off but Menard spins his tires a bit. Edwards clearly beats Menard to the start finish line by half a car length. I still can't understand NASCAR not calling him on it. Especially since they got Johnson 2 times this year.

So Edwards wins the race and the conspiracies begin.

Top 15 finishers - Edwards - Kurt B - Newman - McMurray - Menard - Kenseth - Truex - Gordon - Martin - Stenhouse - Harvick - Biffle - Dale Jr - Kahne

​Kurt B's 2nd place finish brings him home 8th in the top 10. No W's but history abounds. He's the first driver in Chase history to come from a single car team. Also the first team based outside of Charlotte to qualify for the Chase. Furniture Row is based in Colorado. Congrats and Good Luck Kurt. 

Right after the race Bowyer is interviewed about his spin and asked if it was deliberate. He says no he thinks something broke or a tires going down. Dale Jr is interviewed and he's saying it's the damndest thing he's ever watched. He was right behind Bowyer and saw him swerving and then go for a lazy spin. All is well till Sunday when the rumors start and the conspiracy theories kick into over drive with the Twittersphere ablaze. By Monday the first accusations come in.

NASCAR finds that they can't prove without a doubt that he spun on purpose, but they can through radio chatter prove that his team mate Vickers came in for tires when he didn't need to. In fact Bowyer came in 2 times before the restart. Once to get tires and once more for a look see on possible damage. Then when the green flag was about to wave for the last 4 laps both were called to pit road. Vickers response was telling. You talking to me? I have a flat? His crew chief said yes and that we need that point. The point he was talking about was for 3rd team mate Truex. With that 1 point Truex has a Wild Card.

Also in those closing laps Logano who had fallen back to 25th and 3 laps down was in need of some help in the form of a spot and a wave around to gain on Gordon. Bowyers spin gave him the wave around. The deal Penske Racing made with Front Row Motorsports for #38 David Gilliland to let Logano pass him gave him that point he needed.

Again radio chatter gave the deal away. Gillilands spotter said that Penske was asking for that spot. Frank Kerr, crew chief for Gilliland asked who asked. The reply was that the big dog and his cronies are all here. So Gilliland let Logano pass him on the last restart and slowed his lap times to keep Logano there. After the race the spotter told them good job and we might get what we're after now. Front Row Motorsports obviously asked for something previously and now expected to get it. Both teams are Fords and they're considered partners.

So Newman was knocked out of the Chase because he and Truex were tied for one of the Wild Cards. NASCAR had to go to 2nd place wins for the tie breaker. Gordon is bumped out by 1 point. Bowyer, Dale Jr & Kurt B make it in with no wins. Keselowski, last years champ is out.

So after all the interviews and radio chatter reviewing NASCAR passes down a huge fine to Michael Waltrip Racing. It's the biggest ever. A $300,000, General Manager Ty Norris who was Vickers spotter and made the call is suspended indefinitely, all 3 teams are docked 50 points and all 3 crew chiefs are on probation till Dec 31st. The 50 points knocks Truex out of the Chase and puts Newman in.

So lots more whining, interviewing and audio reviewing goes on and NASCAR announces penalties again. Both Penske Racing and Front Row Motorsports are on probation till Dec 31st. No fines? Yup. No fines. 

On Friday it is announced that Gordon has been added as the 13th driver in the Chase. 

I personally wasn't upset about the deal Penske & Front Row made. It's unspoken and well known that the manufacturers and the teams make deals all the time for track position or other favors. Case in point. When at a super speedway in the old cars Gordon asked for Trevor Bayne to tandem draft with him on the restart. Trevor replied through the spotter that he would but at the last second it was conveyed to him that Kenseth needed a drafting partner and Trevor had to go. Why? Gordon drove a Chevy. Trevor and Kenseth were in Fords. Both Ford and Roush denied team orders after the race and Trevor looked like a shmuck. But we all know the truth. And so does NASCAR and I think that probation till Dec 31st was a slap on the wrist to get their attention. 

New rules have been passed down via a 20 minute meeting. Notables are that only one spotter per team may be on the roof from now on. Mr Penske and his buddies are no longer allowed up there. Only 2 analog style radios per spotter allowed. No digital radios. Cameras will be installed to watch for deal making. All drivers must race to 100% of their ability. Team orders are now banned. New clarifying restart rules to be announced Sunday in the drivers meeting.

Pretty much it's mind your own business and drive. I didn't read the transcript but that's what I'm getting out of it. I'm still mad at Johnson, Vickers and Bowyer. I say Johnson drove his car with the intent of bringing out the caution but was smart enough to get his tire to pop. Bowyer spun on purpose. Vickers for his part resisted but I guess those team orders win out. Mark Martin said he was glad he was out of that mess and over at SHR. Me too. I hope this explains everything. Still pisses me off.

CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY GEICO 400

This would be our first stop in the Chase. Logano has the pole. Kyle B is going for the 3 Sweep again. He took the truck race and dominated the Nationwide race. So that's 1, 2 and could it be 3? Logano got 2nd, Dale Jr 5th, Vickers 6th, Kenseth 7th and Harvick 9th in the Nationwide race. Now these are different cars and you can't read too much into their finishes against inferior drivers but seat time is seat time. There is something to be gained by running companion races.

Last years top 15 finishers were Keselowski - Johnson - Kahne - Kyle B - Newman - Stewart - Logano - Dale Jr - Truex - Bowyer - Hornish - Harvick - Biffle - Martin - Menard

So as usual I'm going to say take Gordon or Kahne at your own risk. Hamlin is so distracted from his back pain and the world caving in on his racing career that I'd say skip him too. As far as the MWR guys. That would be Bowyer, Vickers and Truex, they're awesome picks but maybe not this week. NASCAR might be playing with them. Doing things like drawing out pre race inspection so they almost miss the start of the race like they did to Logano and Keselowski towards the beginning of the season. So this situation may light a fire under their asses or it may bring them down. The fans can be tough at driver intros.

All your Chasers except for Bowyer qualified in the top 20. Some lower tier guys to look at would be Montoya starts 3rd and McMurray starts 27th. These 2 have been showing up lately. Almirola, Menard, Stenhouse, Burton, David Ragan, Mears, Gilliland and Allmendinger have been giving the fantasy players some bang for their buck too. The Danica qualified 23rd. She finished 25th here last year. May be worth a look if you want to pick 4 power house guys and have her as the fifth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            

Well hey there and howdy too. Welcome Gabbers and others to my NASCAR updates and other fast stuff. Before I get to the racing stuff I saw this picture and I was blown away by the dedication of our USPS delivery people. If you haven't seen it yet, it's from Colorado. They're being drowned out there by all the rain and this dedicated postal worker.....neither rain nor sleet nor dark of night....is delivering the mail. Wow. Gives me pause and I guess they mean it. Thoughts and prayers to those folks out west. Hopefully the Red Cross and other organizations are set up or on their way to your rescue. 

SUSPECT SPIN - NO NEED TO PIT - DEAL MAKING - RESTART  CONTROVERSY

So I'm sure most of you have heard about this little issue going on in NASCAR. It involves a suspect spin by Bowyer, pitting for no reason by both Bowyer and new team mate Vickers, a deal made in the closing laps for track position to get Logano in the Chase and a horrid restart that Edwards clearly jumped but wasn't made to give it back. So here's the long, short and skinny on this race and controversy.

So it started with the green flag at Richmond on Saturday night. Johnson, Bowyer, Harvick, Edwards, Kyle B & Kenseth were locked into the Chase by vertue of points and wins. So now Dale Jr, Logano, Biffle, Kurt B, Gordon, Kahne, Truex, Newman & long shot Keselowski are in the mix all within 59 points of each other and all race long depending where they were dictated where they were in the points. As Truex said all race long my crew chief is telling me your in, now your out by 1, now your in, no now your out which went on till the last lap. And that's exactly how it went for all of them except Kahne. He was outside the top 10 but had 2 W's so that meant he was getting at least a Wild Card but the score would be better inside the top 10 than with a Wild Card. He would have 6 more points if he were in the top 10 and he'd be higher up in the order. 

So Gordon had the pole to start and grabbed the lead right out of the gate. He knew he HAD to win. No ifs ands or buts about it. Win or no Chase spot. Logano in 9th was fighting with Hamlin in 8th over position. He finally gave up when his tires did. No grip and losing ground. 

By lap 50 Keselowski who also had to win or no Chase spot had taken the lead. 

Lap 66 is when Kurt B took the lead. Johnson had to start last due to the birth of his daughter he wasn't there to qualify or practice. He's made it to 33rd. By lap 84 Logano is 25th and screaming to his crew chief for tires. 

Lap 90 Logano goes a lap down and to the pits for tires. Everyone else follows and Johnson was too fast so he's doing a pass thru penalty. Ouch.

Kenseth now leads at lap 105.

Lap 203 Logano goes down a 2nd lap. Gordon is 15th. Jounson is 3 laps down in 22nd. Keselowski leads.

Lap 224 Gordon says he's coming to pit road because he has too. Diagnosis? Loose wheel. He's 2 laps down in 25th. Keselowski still leads followed by Kurt B, Kyle B, Bowyer and Burton.

Lap 242 Johnson is now down 24 laps. He had a loose alternator cable which destroyed his battery and had to be change in the garage area. No worries though. He's locked in.

Lap 267 CAUTION and Gordon gets the lucky dog (free pass)

83 to go sees Bowyer, Harvick, Kurt B, Burton, Keselowski and my fantasy leagues humming along.

But NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.....With 57 to go and half way through green flag pit stops Johnson has his right front go down and a caution comes out. He wasn't on my fantasy league but I was mad because this threw a major curve ball into my fantasy leagues AND it benefited one on the verge of not making the Chase team mate Gordon. Very surprised in all the comment sections of articles dealing with this that it was mentioned one time that I saw. Johnson was 24 laps down, locked in the Chase and only needed to limp around the track. No need or urgency to run your front end into the track to pick up spots unless to help your team mate get in the Chase. 

So now those that did not pit yet go in and are mired back behind those that pitted when the race was green. So now Edwards is now in the lead followed by Menard, Kurt B, McMurray, Newman, Biffle, Stenhouse & Kenseth for your top 8.

So with 30 to go Newman is on the hunt for a W. He's told as the drivers are on the track now only a win will due. No choice. Go get it. And he does. With 20 to go he's 2nd. With 13 to go he's on Edwards bumper. With 10 to go he gets the lead.

With 8 to go Bowyer goes for a spin...all by himself. CAUTION. Everybody pits and Menard is first on the restart with Edwards in 2nd. They take off. Well, Edwards takes off but Menard spins his tires a bit. Edwards clearly beats Menard to the start finish line by half a car length. I still can't understand NASCAR not calling him on it. Especially since they got Johnson 2 times this year.

So Edwards wins the race and the conspiracies begin.

Top 15 finishers - Edwards - Kurt B - Newman - McMurray - Menard - Kenseth - Truex - Gordon - Martin - Stenhouse - Harvick - Biffle - Dale Jr - Kahne

​Kurt B's 2nd place finish brings him home 8th in the top 10. No W's but history abounds. He's the first driver in Chase history to come from a single car team. Also the first team based outside of Charlotte to qualify for the Chase. Furniture Row is based in Colorado. Congrats and Good Luck Kurt. 

Right after the race Bowyer is interviewed about his spin and asked if it was deliberate. He says no he thinks something broke or a tires going down. Dale Jr is interviewed and he's saying it's the damndest thing he's ever watched. He was right behind Bowyer and saw him swerving and then go for a lazy spin. All is well till Sunday when the rumors start and the conspiracy theories kick into over drive with the Twittersphere ablaze. By Monday the first accusations come in.

NASCAR finds that they can't prove without a doubt that he spun on purpose, but they can through radio chatter prove that his team mate Vickers came in for tires when he didn't need to. In fact Bowyer came in 2 times before the restart. Once to get tires and once more for a look see on possible damage. Then when the green flag was about to wave for the last 4 laps both were called to pit road. Vickers response was telling. You talking to me? I have a flat? His crew chief said yes and that we need that point. The point he was talking about was for 3rd team mate Truex. With that 1 point Truex has a Wild Card.

Also in those closing laps Logano who had fallen back to 25th and 3 laps down was in need of some help in the form of a spot and a wave around to gain on Gordon. Bowyers spin gave him the wave around. The deal Penske Racing made with Front Row Motorsports for #38 David Gilliland to let Logano pass him gave him that point he needed.

Again radio chatter gave the deal away. Gillilands spotter said that Penske was asking for that spot. Frank Kerr, crew chief for Gilliland asked who asked. The reply was that the big dog and his cronies are all here. So Gilliland let Logano pass him on the last restart and slowed his lap times to keep Logano there. After the race the spotter told them good job and we might get what we're after now. Front Row Motorsports obviously asked for something previously and now expected to get it. Both teams are Fords and they're considered partners.

So Newman was knocked out of the Chase because he and Truex were tied for one of the Wild Cards. NASCAR had to go to 2nd place wins for the tie breaker. Gordon is bumped out by 1 point. Bowyer, Dale Jr & Kurt B make it in with no wins. Keselowski, last years champ is out.

So after all the interviews and radio chatter reviewing NASCAR passes down a huge fine to Michael Waltrip Racing. It's the biggest ever. A $300,000, General Manager Ty Norris who was Vickers spotter and made the call is suspended indefinitely, all 3 teams are docked 50 points and all 3 crew chiefs are on probation till Dec 31st. The 50 points knocks Truex out of the Chase and puts Newman in.

So lots more whining, interviewing and audio reviewing goes on and NASCAR announces penalties again. Both Penske Racing and Front Row Motorsports are on probation till Dec 31st. No fines? Yup. No fines. 

On Friday it is announced that Gordon has been added as the 13th driver in the Chase. 

I personally wasn't upset about the deal Penske & Front Row made. It's unspoken and well known that the manufacturers and the teams make deals all the time for track position or other favors. Case in point. When at a super speedway in the old cars Gordon asked for Trevor Bayne to tandem draft with him on the restart. Trevor replied through the spotter that he would but at the last second it was conveyed to him that Kenseth needed a drafting partner and Trevor had to go. Why? Gordon drove a Chevy. Trevor and Kenseth were in Fords. Both Ford and Roush denied team orders after the race and Trevor looked like a shmuck. But we all know the truth. And so does NASCAR and I think that probation till Dec 31st was a slap on the wrist to get their attention. 

New rules have been passed down via a 20 minute meeting. Notables are that only one spotter per team may be on the roof from now on. Mr Penske and his buddies are no longer allowed up there. Only 2 analog style radios per spotter allowed. No digital radios. Cameras will be installed to watch for deal making. All drivers must race to 100% of their ability. Team orders are now banned. New clarifying restart rules to be announced Sunday in the drivers meeting.

Pretty much it's mind your own business and drive. I didn't read the transcript but that's what I'm getting out of it. I'm still mad at Johnson, Vickers and Bowyer. I say Johnson drove his car with the intent of bringing out the caution but was smart enough to get his tire to pop. Bowyer spun on purpose. Vickers for his part resisted but I guess those team orders win out. Mark Martin said he was glad he was out of that mess and over at SHR. Me too. I hope this explains everything. Still pisses me off.

CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY GEICO 400

This would be our first stop in the Chase. Logano has the pole. Kyle B is going for the 3 Sweep again. He took the truck race and dominated the Nationwide race. So that's 1, 2 and could it be 3? Logano got 2nd, Dale Jr 5th, Vickers 6th, Kenseth 7th and Harvick 9th in the Nationwide race. Now these are different cars and you can't read too much into their finishes against inferior drivers but seat time is seat time. There is something to be gained by running companion races.

Last years top 15 finishers were Keselowski - Johnson - Kahne - Kyle B - Newman - Stewart - Logano - Dale Jr - Truex - Bowyer - Hornish - Harvick - Biffle - Martin - Menard

So as usual I'm going to say take Gordon or Kahne at your own risk. Hamlin is so distracted from his back pain and the world caving in on his racing career that I'd say skip him too. As far as the MWR guys. That would be Bowyer, Vickers and Truex, they're awesome picks but maybe not this week. NASCAR might be playing with them. Doing things like drawing out pre race inspection so they almost miss the start of the race like they did to Logano and Keselowski towards the beginning of the season. So this situation may light a fire under their asses or it may bring them down. The fans can be tough at driver intros.

All your Chasers except for Bowyer qualified in the top 20. Some lower tier guys to look at would be Montoya starts 3rd and McMurray starts 27th. These 2 have been showing up lately. Almirola, Menard, Stenhouse, Burton, David Ragan, Mears, Gilliland and Allmendinger have been giving the fantasy players some bang for their buck too. The Danica qualified 23rd. She finished 25th here last year. May be worth a look if you want to pick 4 power house guys and have her as the fifth.

Possibilities are endless. I'm 2nd in my money league. I could be first if Bowyer and Vickers hadn't done that BS. I play like a shark in that league. I wants ma muny. I need to get out of this program. It's threatening to go postal on me. So once again I send my thoughts and prayers to the people of Colorado and......I'm outta here.....

 

 

 

 

 

 

                            

Well hey there and howdy too. Welcome Gabbers and others to my NASCAR updates and other fast stuff. Before I get to the racing stuff I saw this picture and I was blown away by the dedication of our USPS delivery people. If you haven't seen it yet, it's from Colorado. They're being drowned out there by all the rain and this dedicated postal worker.....neither rain nor sleet nor dark of night....is delivering the mail. Wow. Gives me pause and I guess they mean it. Thoughts and prayers to those folks out west. Hopefully the Red Cross and other organizations are set up or on their way to your rescue. 

SUSPECT SPIN - NO NEED TO PIT - DEAL MAKING - RESTART  CONTROVERSY

So I'm sure most of you have heard about this little issue going on in NASCAR. It involves a suspect spin by Bowyer, pitting for no reason by both Bowyer and new team mate Vickers, a deal made in the closing laps for track position to get Logano in the Chase and a horrid restart that Edwards clearly jumped but wasn't made to give it back. So here's the long, short and skinny on this race and controversy.

So it started with the green flag at Richmond on Saturday night. Johnson, Bowyer, Harvick, Edwards, Kyle B & Kenseth were locked into the Chase by vertue of points and wins. So now Dale Jr, Logano, Biffle, Kurt B, Gordon, Kahne, Truex, Newman & long shot Keselowski are in the mix all within 59 points of each other and all race long depending where they were dictated where they were in the points. As Truex said all race long my crew chief is telling me your in, now your out by 1, now your in, no now your out which went on till the last lap. And that's exactly how it went for all of them except Kahne. He was outside the top 10 but had 2 W's so that meant he was getting at least a Wild Card but the score would be better inside the top 10 than with a Wild Card. He would have 6 more points if he were in the top 10 and he'd be higher up in the order. 

So Gordon had the pole to start and grabbed the lead right out of the gate. He knew he HAD to win. No ifs ands or buts about it. Win or no Chase spot. Logano in 9th was fighting with Hamlin in 8th over position. He finally gave up when his tires did. No grip and losing ground. 

By lap 50 Keselowski who also had to win or no Chase spot had taken the lead. 

Lap 66 is when Kurt B took the lead. Johnson had to start last due to the birth of his daughter he wasn't there to qualify or practice. He's made it to 33rd. By lap 84 Logano is 25th and screaming to his crew chief for tires. 

Lap 90 Logano goes a lap down and to the pits for tires. Everyone else follows and Johnson was too fast so he's doing a pass thru penalty. Ouch.

Kenseth now leads at lap 105.

Lap 203 Logano goes down a 2nd lap. Gordon is 15th. Jounson is 3 laps down in 22nd. Keselowski leads.

Lap 224 Gordon says he's coming to pit road because he has too. Diagnosis? Loose wheel. He's 2 laps down in 25th. Keselowski still leads followed by Kurt B, Kyle B, Bowyer and Burton.

Lap 242 Johnson is now down 24 laps. He had a loose alternator cable which destroyed his battery and had to be change in the garage area. No worries though. He's locked in.

Lap 267 CAUTION and Gordon gets the lucky dog (free pass)

83 to go sees Bowyer, Harvick, Kurt B, Burton, Keselowski and my fantasy leagues humming along.

But NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.....With 57 to go and half way through green flag pit stops Johnson has his right front go down and a caution comes out. He wasn't on my fantasy league but I was mad because this threw a major curve ball into my fantasy leagues AND it benefited one on the verge of not making the Chase team mate Gordon. Very surprised in all the comment sections of articles dealing with this that it was mentioned one time that I saw. Johnson was 24 laps down, locked in the Chase and only needed to limp around the track. No need or urgency to run your front end into the track to pick up spots unless to help your team mate get in the Chase. 

So now those that did not pit yet go in and are mired back behind those that pitted when the race was green. So now Edwards is now in the lead followed by Menard, Kurt B, McMurray, Newman, Biffle, Stenhouse & Kenseth for your top 8.

So with 30 to go Newman is on the hunt for a W. He's told as the drivers are on the track now only a win will due. No choice. Go get it. And he does. With 20 to go he's 2nd. With 13 to go he's on Edwards bumper. With 10 to go he gets the lead.

With 8 to go Bowyer goes for a spin...all by himself. CAUTION. Everybody pits and Menard is first on the restart with Edwards in 2nd. They take off. Well, Edwards takes off but Menard spins his tires a bit. Edwards clearly beats Menard to the start finish line by half a car length. I still can't understand NASCAR not calling him on it. Especially since they got Johnson 2 times this year.

So Edwards wins the race and the conspiracies begin.

Top 15 finishers - Edwards - Kurt B - Newman - McMurray - Menard - Kenseth - Truex - Gordon - Martin - Stenhouse - Harvick - Biffle - Dale Jr - Kahne

​Kurt B's 2nd place finish brings him home 8th in the top 10. No W's but history abounds. He's the first driver in Chase history to come from a single car team. Also the first team based outside of Charlotte to qualify for the Chase. Furniture Row is based in Colorado. Congrats and Good Luck Kurt. 

Right after the race Bowyer is interviewed about his spin and asked if it was deliberate. He says no he thinks something broke or a tires going down. Dale Jr is interviewed and he's saying it's the damndest thing he's ever watched. He was right behind Bowyer and saw him swerving and then go for a lazy spin. All is well till Sunday when the rumors start and the conspiracy theories kick into over drive with the Twittersphere ablaze. By Monday the first accusations come in.

NASCAR finds that they can't prove without a doubt that he spun on purpose, but they can through radio chatter prove that his team mate Vickers came in for tires when he didn't need to. In fact Bowyer came in 2 times before the restart. Once to get tires and once more for a look see on possible damage. Then when the green flag was about to wave for the last 4 laps both were called to pit road. Vickers response was telling. You talking to me? I have a flat? His crew chief said yes and that we need that point. The point he was talking about was for 3rd team mate Truex. With that 1 point Truex has a Wild Card.

Also in those closing laps Logano who had fallen back to 25th and 3 laps down was in need of some help in the form of a spot and a wave around to gain on Gordon. Bowyers spin gave him the wave around. The deal Penske Racing made with Front Row Motorsports for #38 David Gilliland to let Logano pass him gave him that point he needed.

Again radio chatter gave the deal away. Gillilands spotter said that Penske was asking for that spot. Frank Kerr, crew chief for Gilliland asked who asked. The reply was that the big dog and his cronies are all here. So Gilliland let Logano pass him on the last restart and slowed his lap times to keep Logano there. After the race the spotter told them good job and we might get what we're after now. Front Row Motorsports obviously asked for something previously and now expected to get it. Both teams are Fords and they're considered partners.

So Newman was knocked out of the Chase because he and Truex were tied for one of the Wild Cards. NASCAR had to go to 2nd place wins for the tie breaker. Gordon is bumped out by 1 point. Bowyer, Dale Jr & Kurt B make it in with no wins. Keselowski, last years champ is out.

So after all the interviews and radio chatter reviewing NASCAR passes down a huge fine to Michael Waltrip Racing. It's the biggest ever. A $300,000, General Manager Ty Norris who was Vickers spotter and made the call is suspended indefinitely, all 3 teams are docked 50 points and all 3 crew chiefs are on probation till Dec 31st. The 50 points knocks Truex out of the Chase and puts Newman in.

So lots more whining, interviewing and audio reviewing goes on and NASCAR announces penalties again. Both Penske Racing and Front Row Motorsports are on probation till Dec 31st. No fines? Yup. No fines. 

On Friday it is announced that Gordon has been added as the 13th driver in the Chase. 

I personally wasn't upset about the deal Penske & Front Row made. It's unspoken and well known that the manufacturers and the teams make deals all the time for track position or other favors. Case in point. When at a super speedway in the old cars Gordon asked for Trevor Bayne to tandem draft with him on the restart. Trevor replied through the spotter that he would but at the last second it was conveyed to him that Kenseth needed a drafting partner and Trevor had to go. Why? Gordon drove a Chevy. Trevor and Kenseth were in Fords. Both Ford and Roush denied team orders after the race and Trevor looked like a shmuck. But we all know the truth. And so does NASCAR and I think that probation till Dec 31st was a slap on the wrist to get their attention. 

New rules have been passed down via a 20 minute meeting. Notables are that only one spotter per team may be on the roof from now on. Mr Penske and his buddies are no longer allowed up there. Only 2 analog style radios per spotter allowed. No digital radios. Cameras will be installed to watch for deal making. All drivers must race to 100% of their ability. Team orders are now banned. New clarifying restart rules to be announced Sunday in the drivers meeting.

Pretty much it's mind your own business and drive. I didn't read the transcript but that's what I'm getting out of it. I'm still mad at Johnson, Vickers and Bowyer. I say Johnson drove his car with the intent of bringing out the caution but was smart enough to get his tire to pop. Bowyer spun on purpose. Vickers for his part resisted but I guess those team orders win out. Mark Martin said he was glad he was out of that mess and over at SHR. Me too. I hope this explains everything. Still pisses me off.

CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY GEICO 400

This would be our first stop in the Chase. Logano has the pole. Kyle B is going for the 3 Sweep again. He took the truck race and dominated the Nationwide race. So that's 1, 2 and could it be 3? Logano got 2nd, Dale Jr 5th, Vickers 6th, Kenseth 7th and Harvick 9th in the Nationwide race. Now these are different cars and you can't read too much into their finishes against inferior drivers but seat time is seat time. There is something to be gained by running companion races.

Last years top 15 finishers were Keselowski - Johnson - Kahne - Kyle B - Newman - Stewart - Logano - Dale Jr - Truex - Bowyer - Hornish - Harvick - Biffle - Martin - Menard

So as usual I'm going to say take Gordon or Kahne at your own risk. Hamlin is so distracted from his back pain and the world caving in on his racing career that I'd say skip him too. As far as the MWR guys. That would be Bowyer, Vickers and Truex, they're awesome picks but maybe not this week. NASCAR might be playing with them. Doing things like drawing out pre race inspection so they almost miss the start of the race like they did to Logano and Keselowski towards the beginning of the season. So this situation may light a fire under their asses or it may bring them down. The fans can be tough at driver intros.

All your Chasers except for Bowyer qualified in the top 20. Some lower tier guys to look at would be Montoya starts 3rd and McMurray starts 27th. These 2 have been showing up lately. Almirola, Menard, Stenhouse, Burton, David Ragan, Mears, Gilliland and Allmendinger have been giving the fantasy players some bang for their buck too. The Danica qualified 23rd. She finished 25th here last year. May be worth a look if you want to pick 4 power house guys and have her as the fifth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Power Rankings - Chicagoland
Category: Racing
Tags: Chicagoland Motor Speedway NASCAR Jimmie Johnson Carl Edwards

scheduleheroweb

   The first race of the Chase is Sunday at Chicagoland for a 400 miler sure to expect the unexpected.

I say this because of what happened last week at Richmond with Michael Waltrup, the owner of Michael Waltrup Racing giving there drivers orders to take a dive reminiscent of the Black Sox scandal back in the day to get there drivers into NASCAR'S version of the playoffs, The Chase.

I want to make something perfectly clear, Clint Bowyer isn't the bad guy here, its Michael Waltrup for giving the orders, I had my scanner on and listened to what was said to Bowyer over the radio and he repeatedly asked "are you sure" a number of times as to say he didn't want to do it.

There might be a bulls-eye placed on the #15 race car of Clint Bowyer for taking a dive and altering the finish of last weeks race. Will it happen? I don't know and I'm sick and tired of it by this time so lets move on and concentrate at what is a stake with your fantasy team.

Last week for the most part we fantasy managers took a big time hit to end the second segment, it cost me from first to fourth on my Yahoo cash league that sent me into the devil's vocabulary of fine grammar.

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Stick with the big names that are in The Chase this week and forget about Jimmie's woes the past three weeks because it was nothing more than a cover up to run experimental parts and trying to get his teammate into The Chase. Yes, I think he was sandbagging and I can guarantee that he will have a top five finish with no problems what so ever.

The same for all the other big names that should be running better than they have lately and with that said here are the ten best average finish at Chicagoland over the last five years:

10 Martin Truex Jr- solid on mile and half tracks. 1 top ten.

9 Dale Earnhardt Jr- could have a solid run if he keeps his composure. 0 wins, 1 top 5 and 2 top 10's.

8 Jimmie Johnson- a must have this time of the year. 0 wins, 1 top 5 and 3 top 10's.

7 Ryan Newman- should have won last week but we all know how that turned out. 0 win, 1 top 5 and 3 top 10's.

6 Brian Vickers- might be getting out of the way for the most part. 1 top 10.

5 Mark Martin- should have a good run for Stewart on Sunday. 1 win, 1 top 5 and 2 top 10's.

4 Carl Edwards will show up Sunday due to one man, his crew chief Jimmy Fenig. 0 wins, 2 top 5's and 2 top 10's

3 Clint Bowyer-??????? 0 wins, 1 top 5 and 4 top 10's

2 Kasey Kahne- gets it done and my pick to win The Chase! 0 wins, 2 wins and 3 top 10's

1 Tony Stewart- won't race but Mark Martin has good stats at Chicago.

Chase Predictions: I'm picking Kasey Kahne to win The Chase with Matt Kenseth close behind followed by Carl Edwards. Who do you like?

Streakers: BonBon took the second segment and the winner of the Red Momo steering wheel. One Red Momo Momo steering left to give away and the Gold Momo for winning the overall league at seasons end. 3BonBon leads the league with 2Qulindo in second and17 Varoom Varoom in third. This is the start of the last segment and a chance to win the Red Momo steering wheel trophy, Good Luck!

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