Posts Tagged ‘Bristol Motor Speedway’

NASCAR Race Fan Commentary

April 19, 2012

Welcome NASCAR race fans to my NASCAR blog. In 1996 I was introduced to NASCAR racing. I thought going so fast around a track and passing each other was the most beautiful thing in the world. I fell in love with it, the first race I saw. And it has become a passion of mine. I watch all the racing that is televised. Even the replays during the week. I Love to watch RACING.

The Samsung Mobile 500 race at Texas Motor Speedway featured 234 consecutive Green laps of racing. No crashing for cautions to tighten them up. Just pure RACING for 234 laps. Some NASCAR race fans decided this was a boring race! How can all that racing be boring, I have to ask. However, the majority (?) of fans want to see crashing and cautions. And a race is boring if all they do is race around the track!

Everyone praises Dale Earnhardt as a great driver. Because he had seven championships and many, many wins. And rightly so. He did have that many wins and championships. But their praise is mostly about how he got all those wins. By “rattling their chain”. By crashing others out of the way. By intimidating others to move out of the way before he could put them into the wall. Me, I prefer to watch racing. Catching and passing. The fans back then weren’t all Earnhardt fans. Bill Elliott was the most popular driver over and over. Elliott raced clean. He raced you and passed you without having to move you out of the way. My personal favorite was the other Dale, Dale Jarrett. Also a clean driver. The “Dale and Dale shows” were fun to watch. One Dale did not knock the other out of the way, but raced each other. Was that boring? I hope not.

Bristol Motor Speedway used to be a one groove track. If you got caught on top, everyone raced past you. They would move you out of the way to get by, most of the time bringing out a caution. Seems like the more cautions, the better the racing. For the Food City 500 this year, there were few cautions and much racing. Because with the reconfiguration of the track, there is now room to race and pass without bringing out a caution. The majority (?) of fans spoke up and the owner, Bruton Smith, is talking about “fixing” the track so there is more ramming into each other and crashing. So, I have to ask, is NASCAR about racing or about crashing? Do the fans go to Bristol to see the crashing or the racing?

The Camping World Trucks came back to Rockingham Speedway this past weekend. And what a wonderful race that was! Not much crashing, but a lot of racing. While the media was excited to be back at The Rock, and the fans came out to watch and the drivers all want to drive at Rockingham, it will not be on the Sprint Cup circuit. No entertainment value. NASCAR has become WRE (World Racing Entertainment). It isn’t about racing, but about entertainment. Racing is boring!

This week NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will be at the 1.5 mile D-shaped oval of Kansas Speedway. Will it be another boring (?) race like the one at Texas? Or will they crash into each other to bring out cautions and make things more exciting and entertaining? I guess we shall see. Perhaps if the media talked about NASCAR racing as being exciting racing instead of spectacular crashing, maybe racing each other for position and passing would become more exciting. Greg Biffle racing Jimmie Johnson for the win was exciting. Kyle Busch smashing into others is not my kind of excitement.

I will be back for Fast Friday. For practice at Kansas Speedway. For NASCAR tickets, go to Vivid Seats. They have tickets to most Sporting events.

Brought to you by Sheila Hawley. I Love NASCAR racing.

NASCAR Race Review: Food City 500

March 19, 2012

Welcome NASCAR race fans to my NASCAR blog. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series raced the Food City 500 in Thunder Valley, the Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, TN. This was the fourth race of the season. So far there have been three different race winners. Bristol Motor Speedway is the Fastest Half Mile in the world, a .533 mile track. Bristol Motor Speedway was reconfigured to give it a second groove to make for more racing for position. Some NASCAR fans prefer the old shoving out of the way for position. This NASCAR race fan prefers the side by side racing with less shoving and caution laps.

Sunday morning, there was rain at the track, washing all the rubber off the track. But that stopped, the track was dried and the race is good to go. There will be a competition caution around lap 50 so the teams can see how the tires are. Should there be a caution before that, they will not be allowed to fuel the cars.

Pre-race ceremonies included driver introductions with each driver picking a song and introducing himself. Watching the race at home, we got to see only a handful of the drivers and their songs.

45 cars were entered in the race. 7 Robby Gordon had engine issues, was unable to start the car and withdrew from the race. Rookie 37 Timmy Hill was the lone driver who did not make the race. 16 Greg Biffle captured the Pole with a speed of 125.215 mph and 15.324 seconds around this short track. 22 A. J. Allmendinger sits next to him on the front row. Biffle finished third in the three previous races this year. No pole sitter has won this race since Rusty Wallace did it many years ago.

So, here we go! 16 Biffle chooses the outside and pulls ahead to lead. 24 Jeff Gordon and 22 race for second with 39 Ryan Newman right behind. 78 Regan Smith, 99 Carl Edwards, 2 Brad Keselowski and 43 Aric Almirola race for position. 22 drives under 24 for second. 24 and 39 race for third.

The first caution comes out during the commercial. 78, 5 Kasey Kahne and 2 were racing for position. 5 and 78 got together, 5 spins, 2 and 78 get away with some damage. 99 runs into 5, collecting 18 Kyle Busch, 9 Marcos Ambrose and 29 Kevin Harvick. 5 had thought he cleared 78, 78 got into 5 to start the mess. (Clearly, it was too soon for no give and take.) This will be the competition caution. 22 stays out to lead. Seven drivers do not make a pit stop.

They restart on lap 46. 31 Jeff Burton gets by 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. 17 Matt Kenseth, 33 Brendan Gaughan and 43 race for position with 27 Paul Menard and 39 joining them. 14 Tony Stewart races side by side with 51 Kurt Busch. 55 Brian Vickers and team mate 56 Martin Truex, Jr. race for position. 55 takes the lead in traffic, on the bottom of the track when 22 is high behind a car about to be lapped.

The second caution comes out when 32 Ken Schrader had a tire going down and hits the wall hard. 36 Dave Blaney gets his lap back. 55 leads. 22 and 31 race for second with 24 right behind. 22 stays in second. 9 and 18 are back in the race after repairs, many laps down. 22, 24 and 2 race for position 2 takes the spot, 24 gets by 22. 22, 88 and 31 race for position. 17 gets by 88 for fourth. 1 Jamie McMurray drives under 22 for tenth. (22 is very loose and loosing spots.) 5 is back on the track.

2 catches leader 55. 14 moves 43 out of the way. 24 drives between two lapped cars. 15 Clint Bowyer drives under 48 Jimmie Johnson for seventh. 2 takes the lead. 24 and 55 race for second. 22 is way too loose and pits. 24 catches leader 2. 17 gets by 55 for third. 17 gets by 24 for second. 17 takes the lead as 2 pits to start Green Flag Pitting. When 55 finally makes his pit stop, 2 is back in the lead. 11 Denny Hamlin has a loose wheel and has to pit again. 31 gets by 24 for third. 99 is back on the track. 55 drives around 88.

17 catches leader 2, trying to lap 14. The third caution comes out when 30 David Stremme blows a right front tire and hits the wall. 14 Tony Stewart gets his lap back. 29 stays on the lead lap. 11 takes the wave around. 2 chooses the inside and 17 and 2 battle for the lead, touching each other. 17 takes the lead on the outside. 15 and 31 race for position with 24. 15 gets the spot. 24 and 88 race for fifth.

The fourth caution comes out during the commercial. 24 and 88 were racing side by side and get together. 24 cuts a tire and spins into the wall. They restart with 130 laps to go. 17 chooses the outside. The first eight cars stay out. 17 and 2 race for the lead. 48 and 16 race for seventh. 31 gets by 15. 17 leads but cannot pull away. 31 and 15 race each other again. 17 and 2 race for the lead. 2 takes the lead. 15 gets by 31 for third. 2 gets a little too high and thinks he has a flat tire. 48 and 16 race side by side and 16 finally takes the spot. 56 drives around 31 for sixth.

FOX has side by side commercials with racing during the second half of the race. As we go to the side by side commercial, the fifth caution comes out. FOX stays in this format. 14 and 33 get together. 88 makes a pit stop and is caught speeding. Ten cars are on the lead lap.

2 Brad Keselowski holds off 17 Matt Kenseth to win the Food City 500 race at Bristol Motor Speedway. This is his second win at this track in a row. 56 Martin Truex, Jr. finishes third, followed by 15 Clint Bowyer, 55 Brian Vickers, 31 Jeff Burton, 1 Jamie McMurray, 42 Juan Pablo Montoya, 48 Jimmie Johnson and 27 Paul Menard for the top ten finishers. 29 Kevin Harvick overcomes the early caution to finish eleventh, 39 Ryan Newman comes in twelfth, pole sitter, 16 Greg Biffle finishes thirteenth, 14 Tony Stewart finishes fourteenth and 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. finishes fifteenth after his speeding penalty. There were seven different leaders. Keselowski led the most laps.

Greg Biffle stays on top in points, nine ahead of Kevin Harvick. Matt Kenseth moves up two spots into third. Martin Truex, Jr. moves up four spots into fourth while Denny Hamlin falls two spots into fifth. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. falls two spots to sixth. Tony Stewart remains in seventh. Clint Bowyer moves up six positions to eighth. Joey Logano remains in ninth. Paul Menard moves up a spot into the top ten. Jeff Burton moves up four spots into eleventh. Ryan Newman moves up a spot into twelfth while Brad Keselowski moves up eight spots into thirteenth. Carl Edwards falls eight spots after the early crash into fourteenth. Kyle Busch falls three spots into fifteenth. Mark Martin, running only a partial schedule, was not in the race and falls six spots into sixteenth. Jimmie Johnson moves up another six positions into seventeenth. Juan Pablo Montoya and Jamie McMurray each move up six positions into eighteenth and nineteenth. Regan Smith falls one position for the top twenty in points.

Brought to you by Sheila Hawley. I Love NASCAR racing.


NASCAR Race Review: Ford EcoBoost 300

March 17, 2012

Welcome NASCAR race fans to my NASCAR blog. The NASCAR Nationwide Series is at the Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend for the Ford EcoBoost 300. Practice was held on Friday with Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. being the fastest. Coors Light Pole Qualifying took place Saturday morning with Derrike Cope, the slowest in practice coming out first. He and Morgan Shepherd failed to make the race. Joey Logano captured the pole with a speed of 124.210 mph and 15.448 seconds around this fast half mile track. Trevor Bayne starts second.

So far this year, there has been three races. Nationwide drivers have won all three races. (Or, as ESPN commentator Allen Bestwick says, non-Cup drivers.) It sure is fun watching the Nationwide drivers winning the Nationwide races.

This track is so small, it has two pit lanes. During caution, they all come in off Turn 4. If there is pitting while the race is Green, the drivers may go in off turn 2 if their pit is down that lane. There were three timing spots on each side to catch those speeding on pit lane. They had to add more of these so drivers could no longer pass cars before the next timing spot.

So, here we go! 18 Joey Logano leads from the Pole position. 11 Brian Scott drives around 54 Kyle Busch. 3 Austin Dillon drives around 31 Justin Allgaier. 22 Brad Keselowski gets loose. 3 and 38 Kasey Kahne race side by side and 3 drives under 38. 2 Elliott Sadler bumps the slower car 39 Joey Gase. Lapped cars are getting in the way of the leaders. 54 gets by 33 Kevin Harvick for fifth. 22 forces 01 Mike Wallace to get by. 54 drives under 60 Trevor Bayne for second. 33 drives through the middle of two lapped cars. 54 takes the lead in traffic.

The first caution comes out when 39 Joey Gase gets into the wall. 30 James Buescher gets back onto the lead lap. 18 and 54 are out of the pits first. 12 Sam Hornish, Jr. hits a crew member of the 08 Kyle Fowler team as he is trying to get out of his pit stall. 18 leads. 2 gets by 54 who is stuck on the bottom. 33 and 60 get by 54. 41 Blake Koch is smoking. 22 finally gets by 31. 54 makes a pit stop with a loose wheel. He goes a lap and a half down. 60 and 33 race for third and 60 drives under 33. 31 and 6 Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. race for position and 28 Kevin Lepage stays on top to give them room to race. 6 gets by.

The second caution comes out during the commercial. 12 spins around all by himself. 54 stays out and takes the wave around. 60 leads. The third caution comes out when 50 T. J. Bell gets around and into the wall. 31 gets stuck on the bottom. 6 gets by 31 or second. 31, 22 and 33 get by 2 who is stuck on the bottom. 31 and 22 race or position, 31 gets too high and 22 gets by. 18 and 2 get by 31. 11 heads to the garage with clutch and temperature problems.

6 takes the lead from 60. The fourth caution comes  out during the commercial. 54 looses the brake duct hose and gets into the wall. 60 takes left side tires. 33 is caught speeding. 2 stays out with 38 to restart in front. 31, 20 Ryan Truex and 60 are three wide. 5 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and 18 race for position, 18 gets by and 5 makes the cross-over, but can’t get by. 20 and 60 race side by side. 31 and 6 get together and 6 gets by. 33 and 20 race side by side.

2 Elliott Sadler wins the Ford EcoBoost 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway, his second win this year. The Nationwide drivers are winning all the Nationwide races this year! This NASCAR fan loves it. 38 Kasey Kahne finishes second, followed by 22 Brad Keselowski, 18 Joey Logano, 5 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. 6 Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. 31 Justin Allgaier, 60 Trevor Bayne, 33 Kevin Harvick and 20 Ryan Truex for the top ten. Sadler remains the points leader. Stenhouse moves up a spot into second, Bayne moves up a spot into third. Dillon falls two spots into fourth. Cole Whitt remains in fifth. Hornish remains in sixth, Taylor Malsam remains in seventh. Michael Annette remains in eighth. Allgaier remains in ninth. Mike Bliss moves up our spots into the top ten.

Brought to you by Sheila Hawley. I Love NASCAR racing.

NASCAR Racing At Bristol

March 16, 2012

Welcome NASCAR race fans to my NASCAR blog. NASCAR is at the Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend for the fourth race of the season. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will be racing the Food City 500 race on Sunday, while the NASCAR Nationwide Series will be on track for the Ford EcoBoost 300 race on Saturday. Three races have been run in both Series’ and they each have three different winners!

Bristol Motor Speedway is the fastest half mile in the world, as they like to say. It is a concrete track with high banks. Thunder Valley has seating all the way around the track. If you go to the track, the roar of the engines in the infield is well worth the price of a ticket.

Nationwide had their first practice session first on Friday. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. in his #5 car was fastest, with 2 Elliot Sadler, 11 Brian Scott, 18 Joey Logano and 6 Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. the top five.

Next up was Sprint Cup practice. 7 Robby Gordon never was able to get his car started and withdrew his entry. That left 23 Scott Riggs as the slowest in practice and he will lead Coors Light Pole Qualifying. 99 Carl Edwards was fastest and will be the final driver in qualifying.

There was another practice session for Nationwide, with 6 Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. being the fastest. They will qualify and race the Ford EcoBoost 300 race on Saturday.

Coors Light Pole Qualifying took place Friday afternoon for the Food City 500 Sprint Cup race. 37 Rookie Timmy Hill is the lone driver that did not make the race. 16 Greg Biffle captured the Pole position with a speed of 125.215 mph and 15.324 seconds around this .533 mile track. 22 A. J. Allmendinger almost knocked Greg off with a time of 15.325. That is .001 difference!

The rest of the top ten is 39 Ryan Newman, 24 Jeff Gordon, 2 Brad Keselowski, 78 Regan Smith, 43 Aric Almirola, 99 Carl Edwards, 20 Joey Logano and 5 Kasey Kahne.

Brought to yo by Sheila Hawley. I Love NASCAR racing.

NASCAR Race Review: Irwin Tools Night Race

August 29, 2011

Welcome NASCAR race fans to my NASCAR blog. The twenty-fourth race of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series was the Irwin Tools Night Race at the Bristol Motor Speedway, the world’s fastest half mile. I want to apologize for being late with the review. It was Championship night at my local track, so I taped the race. Then Irene came along and the cable went out on Sunday, so I watched the tape of the race. Coverage was lousy on ABC, but the racing was great.

39 Ryan Newman captured the Pole position on Friday with a speed of 122.811 mph and 15.624 seconds around this .533 mile track. This was his third Bristol Pole and his 48th career Pole! 99 Carl Edwards starts next to him on the front row. NASCAR has been racing in Bristol, TN. for fifty years! This is their Golden Anniversary. 1961-2011. T. J. Bell, J. J. Yeley and Jeff Green failed to make the race.

So, here we go! 39 Newman leads from the pole. 24 Jeff Gordon gets by 99 for second. After a few laps, 24 and 39 battle for the lead and 24 takes the lead. 99 gets by 39 for second. 20 Joey Logano, 33 Clint Bowyer and 9 Marcos Ambrose race each other for position. 2 Brad Keselowski gets by 1 Jamie McMurray. 22 Kurt Busch drives under 1 but 1 fights back. 33 and 20 get together and the first caution comes out on lap 32 for debris in Turn 1. The leader 24 pits but 2 and 17 Matt Kenseth stay out to lead. The top ten did not make a pit stop.

2 and 17 race side by side for the lead and 17 takes the lead. They both slide. 48 Jimmie Johnson and 2 race for second and 48 takes the position. 16 Greg Biffle and 56 Martin Truex, Jr. get together. 2 drives under 48. 29 Kevin Harvick and 18 Kyle Busch race side by side and 29 gets by. 00 David Reutimann, 56 and 5 Mark Martin get by 18. 9 Marcos Ambrose and 18 race side by side and 9 finally gets by 18.

The second caution is also for debris. 48 and 2 come out of the pits first. 17 has trouble coming out of his pit stall and almost gets into 99. At the restart, 48 takes off. 22 was caught speeding. 16 has a vibration and thinks he has a tire going down. He makes a pit stop.

The third caution comes out when 38 Travis Kvapil blows the engine. 51 Mike Bliss gets back onto the lead lap. 48 and 24 battle for the lead and 48 keeps the lead. 39, 2 and 18 battle for position. 27 Paul Menard makes a pit stop and starts Green Flag Pitting. 17 pits and 24 leads. (ABC, doing the broadcast, does not have the ticker going at the top of the screen, so I’m not sure who all leads while the pitting is going on.) 20 leads, then pits. 95 David Starr leads and nearly hits the commitment cone when he makes his pit stop. After it all, 17 is back in the lead.

17 and 24 race side by side for the lead with 29 trying not to go a lap down. 24 takes the lead. 27 has a tire rub. 29 goes two laps down. 00  and 30 David Stremme get together when 00 gets a little loose. 30 doesn’t like that and spins 00, bringing out the fourth caution. Behind them, 11 Denny Hamlin and 27 spin together. 11 slowed for 00, 27 didn’t see it happening. 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. gets back onto the lead lap. 00 comes to pit road and leaves fluid on pit road. They can’t open pit road until it is cleaned up. The drivers take this time to talk strategy with their crew chiefs.

17 and 24 come out first. 99 races side by side with 48 for fourth. 48 makes the pass. 20 drives under 99. 22 was caught speeding again. 56 and 43 A. J. Allmendinger race each other with 18. 17 and 1 battle for the lead. 17 keeps it. 24 gets by 1 for second. 24 takes the lead. 2 and 48 battle for fourth. 48 keeps the position. 56 and 9 race for position and 56 gets the spot.

83 Brian Vickers and 5 get together and 5 spins into the inside wall. He goes back up the track and hits the outside wall, bringing out the fifth caution. At the restart 48 spins his tires. 17 and 24 battle for the lead and 24 takes the lead. 2 and 17 race for second. 48 races with 1. 2 gets by 17. 48 gets by 1. 18 drives between 32 Terry Labonte and 56, getting into both and then the wall, bringing out the sixth caution. 47 Bobby Labonte gets back onto the lead lap. 56 and 2 take two tires to get off pit road first.

2 takes the lead and races away. 1 and 39 race side by side; 24 and 48 race side by side. 39 gets by 1. 24 gets by 48. 24 slides in front of 17 , 17 and 48 race each other for third. 48 and 1 race each other for fourth.  (Tell me there is no action on the new track! There just is more room to race without all the crashing.) 24 tries to take second from 56 but 56 is strong on top and 24 can’t make the pass. 11 gets into 99 to get by. 20 and 31 Jeff Burton battle for position. 24 tries again to get by 56.

And 2 Brad Keselowski wins the Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway, his third win this year. The Blue Deuce wins again at Bristol. Brad takes the American Flag and burns out against the wall. Gordon couldn’t get by Truex and had to settle for third. Johnson finished fourth, followed by McMurray, and Kenseth. Hamlin rallied for seventh followed by Newman, Edwards and Ambrose for the top ten. There were nine leaders, although I never saw Kyle Busch leading. Jeff Gordon led the most laps. In points, Busch and Johnson are tied for the lead with 830 points each. Kenseth moves up two spots into third. Edwards stays in fourth while Harvick drops two spots to fifth. Gordon, Newman, Kurt Busch, Earnhardt, Jr. and Tony Stewart complete the top ten.

Brought to you by Sheila Hawley. I love NASCAR racing.