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NO CUP PRACTICE AT NH September 15, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Races.
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NASCAR has just announced that there will be no NEXTEL Cup practice today at NH. Due to rain – the NASCAR garage will stay open but the practices have been cancelled. Teams now will have to rely only on the Friday practice for car set up for Sundays race. It should make things interesting.

RAIN RAIN GO AWAY – Truck Series Qualifying Canceled. September 15, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Races.

I’m in the media center at New Hampshire International Speedway where it has been pouring rain most of the morning – (11:00 a.m. EST). NASCAR has just announced that Truck Series Qualifying has been CANCELED and the field will be set on points. There has been no announcement yet about practices for NASCAR NEXTEL Cup and we are standing by. I’ve been sloshing through the garage and it’s a beautiful rainy day – not good for qualifying or practicting at this hour – but we’re hanging around in the media center and garage – a good time to tell stories and hang around the tires talking NASCAR. I’ll keep you posted. Light rain and jet dryers out. Puddles in the garage. CBL

Dale Jr – 13th – Why? September 12, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Drivers, Show Items.

I am busy getting ready to leave for New York City tomorrow (Thursday) to broadcast from the XM Studios in New York as the drivers in the chase visit NYC before heading to Loudon, NH.

Yesterday I received a pre-Loudon report from the Budweiser race team courtesy of Fingerprint inc. public relations. Contained within the report close to the bottom was some information I used on the air on my show yesterday. I got tons of calls from people wanting to get a copy of the data that I talked about. So I am including it here for everyone to view. I get pages and pages of pre race reports and it’s always worth the extra time to read all of them because of items contained within them – like this. The tidbit on this report centered around why Dale Earnhardt Junior did not make the chase:


13th?! Why?
It’s hard to describe how a team could run so well in nearly every race – and yet miss the Nextel Cup playoffs. However, NASCAR’s “loop data” statistics point a giant, flashing neon light at the success the Budweiser team has seen this year – and also a glaring spotlight on why they are so far behind in the point standings despite their consistent speed. First, the good news:

Dale Jr. rankings among all drivers after 26 races:
Overall Driver Rating: 7th
Avg. Running Position: 5th
Fastest Early in a Run: 2nd
Fastest Late in a Run: 4th
Fastest on Straightaways: 1st
Fastest in the Turns: 6th
Fastest Laps Run: 4th
Fastest on Restarts: 2nd
Fastest Green Flag Speed: 2nd
Laps in Top-15: 3rd
Laps Led: 7th
Mileage Led: 8th
Percent of Laps on Lead Lap: 5th
Quality Passes: 12th
Speed in Traffic: 5th

And now the bad new: the only category where the team is not among the overall leaders is called “Closers” – which measures the positions improved in final 10 percent of each race. Dale Jr. is not even listed among top-35 drivers for the season, which emphasizes how many times mechanical failures have taken them out of a potential win in the final laps and dropped them deep into the final standings.

I got a bunch of emails about the information above so I am including it in this blog.

Have a great day!

Claire B

BREAKING NEWS – Robert Yates Racing September 7, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Drivers, NASCAR.

Breaking News from the garage here at Richmond: Tidbit: Doug Yates announced today he will field two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) teams in 2008 with drivers David Gilliland and Travis Kvapil. These teams will be operated under a company called “Yates Racing” which has agreed to acquire operating assets from Robert Yates Racing, including the transfer of car numbers and owner points. The transaction will be effective December 1, 2007. “With this announcement it’s clear that the letter of intent with Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing will not proceed. We’re thankful for their support and would welcome the opportunity to work with them in the future,” said Yates Racing CEO Doug Yates. “I am very excited to carry the Yates Racing heritage into the future. I believe I have the experience and understanding of the competition and business requirements that are necessary to be an effective team owner.

BREAKING NEWS – AT&T logos being put back on #31 car September 7, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Breaking News, Sponsors.
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I am here in the garage at Richmond. TIDBIT: The AT&T logo is being put back on the #31 car. When I asked the team about it they told me that all of the parties in the matter have come to a resolution. NASCAR expects to have an announcement about it in a news conference later this afternoon. There’s quite a crowd gathered around the #31 stall in the garage – I just confirmed that NASCAR hopes to make an announcement soon on this. Stay tuned.

BULLETIN – BREAKING NEWS – DEI Sets Line Up September 7, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Breaking News, Drivers, NASCAR.

Hey I’m in the garage at Richmond and there’s a news flash tidbit I wanted to get to you immediately:

Regan Smith to take the wheel of DEI’s fourth entry; Mark Martin and Eric Almirola to take over the No. 8 – Dale Earnhardt, Inc.’s four-car lineup has been settled for the 2008 season, with Regan Smith being the latest driver to join the organization. Smith is the final piece to the driver corps that includes Martin Truex Jr., Paul Menard, Mark Martin and Aric Almirola. “Our lineup is a perfect blend of veteran leadership and youthful promise,” said Max Siegel, president of global operations for Dale Earnhardt, Inc. “The addition of Mark Martin’s leadership and his desire to mentor our drivers is huge for us. Paul Menard and Martin Truex Jr. have been with our company for several years and we have confidence and great expectations in both of them, which allows us to further develop our future with two rookie drivers in Regan and Aric.”


Posted by claireblang in Breaking News, Drivers, NASCAR.

Hey All: I am on my way soon to a news conference at Hall of Fame racing announcing their new driver which is expected to be JJ Yeley. I just got this from Hendrick Motorsports. Wanted to post it ASAP for you all.

MEARS TO DRIVE NO. 5 KELLOGG’S/CARQUEST CHEVYS IN 2008; EURY JOINING HENDRICK, GRUBB ASSUMING LEADERSHIP ROLE Casey Mears will drive the No. 5 Kellogg’s/CARQUEST Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports in the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, joining a team that secured its second consecutive Chase for the Championship berth Sunday at California Speedway. The effort will be led by Alan Gustafson, 32, who has earned four wins, two poles, 25 top-five finishes and 45 top-10s since his first season as crew chief of the No. 5 Chevrolet in 2005. Only five Cup Series teams have posted more top-10 finishes during that span.

TONY EURY JR. WILL JOIN HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS FOR 2008; DARIAN GRUBB TO MOVE INTO SENIOR LEADERSHIP POSITION When driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. joins Hendrick Motorsports for the 2008 Sprint Cup Series season, Tony Eury Jr. will be his crew chief. Eury, who has been Earnhardt’s crew chief for the past two seasons, signed a multi-year agreement with the organization this week.

“Tony Jr. and Dale have a successful history working together,” Hendrick said. “They have trust in each other, which is the biggest part of the relationship between driver and crew chief. We have the utmost confidence in their ability to win races and compete for titles at Hendrick Motorsports.”

Hall of Fame Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing Update September 2, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Breaking News, NASCAR.
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Hall of Fame Racing has a business alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing which will remain the same with the sale. Gibbs currently fields Chevrolets, but is widely expected that they will announce next week that the team is switching to Toyota. The Hall of Fame team will use the same manufacturer that Gibbs does next season.

NASCAR Team Purchased by Arizona Diamondbacks Executives September 2, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Breaking News, NASCAR.
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Right now I am in the garage at California Speedway where a sunday mid day news conference has just begun –  TIDBIT: Here’s what they are announcing right now – Two executives with the Arizona Diamondbacks have purchased majority interest in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup team owned by Troy Aikman and Roger Staubach. Jeff Moorad, chief executive officer of the Diamondbacks, and Tom Garfinkel, the chief operating officer, were introduced a few minutes ago as the controlling owners of Hall of Fame Racing here at California Speedway. The original ownership group, including Aikman and Staubach, will remain involved as minority owners. But Moorad, who is part of the Diamondbacks ownership group, and Garfinkel will have controlling interest.

Brad Keselowski Update – CBL in Garage at California Speedway September 2, 2007

Posted by claireblang in Breaking News, Drivers.

Hey all!  Extremely hot here in the garage at California Speedway. Everyone here is talking about the tough hit during the Busch Series race here last night at Fontana for JR motorsports driver Brad Keselowski.
His foot got caught between clutch and firewall so he was stuck and needed help out.  His helmet cracked in three spots so they took him to the hospital for observation and he was released. I heard that Dr. Petty will look at him today and he expects to drive at Richmond but, of course,he will have to be released by a doctor to drive. Whoa – as I am typing this -Just this moment I got a statement from the team as I have been asking for more details. I thought you’d want it right away so am sending it now:
 – Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 88 Navy Chevrolet in the NASCAR Busch Series, was examined and released from Loma Linda University Medical Center Saturday night after a crash in the Camping World 300 at California Speedway.  Keselowski was airlifted to the hospital, where he underwent CT Scanning and x-rays on his left ankle and chest.  As standard procedure, he will have further evaluation by Dr. Jerry Petty upon his return to North Carolina.
More later- I just like to keep you informed asap on anything that I hear here in the garage in California.