NASCAR: Last Race Of The Season

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Welcome race fans. This Ford Champion weekend closes the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. That means there will be no more racing this year. And I, for one am truly saddened. The Ford 400 today will be the last race.

So, before I get into the race itself, let’s see what else happened this last weekend. Jimmy Johnson captured the Coors Light pole with a speed of 173.919. That is the first step to getting his unprecedented fourth Title in a row. Rookie Scott Speed starts next to him in second. 36 is Michael McDowell. 71 is Bobby Labonte. He will be in this TRG (The Racing Group) car next year, hoping to help them get better. 12 is Brad Keselowski in his new ride for next year with Penske Racing. Brad finished the NASCAR Nationwide Series  third in points racing for JR Motorsports. 37 this week is Travis Kvapil. 7 is Matt Crafton, who finished the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season in second. He practiced and qualified the Robby Gordon car while Robby was off racing off-road. He is leading in the points there. He may race the car today from the rear if he gets back to Homestead.

Michael Waltrip is making his last race in his #55 car for full time racing. He will compete in several races in 2010. Martin Truex, Jr. will take over for him in the #56 car.

Kevin Harvick won the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race, the Ford 200 on Friday, with his driver Ron Hornaday capturing his fourth Series Championship. Saturday, in the Ford 300 Nationwide race, Kyle Busch won the race and the Championship.

08 is Terry Labonte in the Ford 400. He had to use his past Champion provisional to get into the race. Failing to qualify were, 87 Joe Nemecheck, 66 Dave Blaney, 70 Mike Skinner (he finished third in points in the Camping World Truck series.), 13 Max Papis and 09 David Stremme.

There was a bit of excitement in the Ford 300 Nationwide race last night. Denny Hamlin vowed to take out Brad Keselowski, a Nationwide regular, because he felt Brad was taking out many Nationwide cars. Brad stayed away from Denny and gave him room, but Denny deliberately spun Brad out during the race. Brad didn’t hit anything, but did a 360 and had some fun with the spin. So, Denny didn’t actually take him out. He just made him spin. Brad’s contention is when Denny spins him, he can continue, but when Brad spins Denny, Denny doesn’t recover. NASCAR held Denny for a lap for rough driving. In a past race, Jason Leffler was held five laps for rough driving, when NASCAR felt he did it on purpose. Denny announced he was going to do it, but NASCAR only held him one lap. He got a Lucky Dog free pass and went on to finish fifth.

My question is, did they penalize Jason more because he was a Nationwide driver who took someone out? Or did they penalize Denny less because he’s a Sprint Cup regular?  Jason didn’t announce he was taking anyone out, yet he got a much bigger penalty. NASCAR needs to be more consistent in their penalties. Denny shouldn’t have been allowed to get that good of a finish. That’s just my opinion. The two of them will race each other in the Ford 400 today.

I’ll see you after the race and let you know what happened. It should be a great race. If only because it is the last one.

Brought to you by Sheila Hawley

See my NASCAR store

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