Racin' & Internet Stuff:

                                      By Tom Avenengo

                                         Volume # 82

                                           11/24/2011

 

 

First:

Getting old is a b*tch.  As we age we tend to have “issues” that pertain to ones health.  Lord knows I’ve had some, myself.  Mine started back in 1996, and the result was some by-pass surgery on June 28th.  That ended my working career, and I was on Social Security Disability until I reached the age of 65 when it changed over to being retired.

I’ve managed to have hardly any problems until this past summer when some shortness of breath appeared.  Might it be the results of all the smoking I did from about 16 years of age up until that by-pass surgery?  Some tests done this past July showed that there was a problem with my heart and I had a Pacemaker/defibrillator installed.  Almost immediately I felt better, and continued to do so – to a point.  About two weeks ago the “running out of breath” started to return.  I’m doing this at 1:30 on Monday, the 21st.  I’ll see my cardiologist at 3:00.  I’m scheduled to have the Pacemaker/defibrillator checked out on the 4th of January, but am hoping that maybe something will show up today that might mean a problem with the unit.  At least I’m hoping that is what the problem is.

My cardiologist did not seem too overly concerned about my shortness of breath, especially after I told him that it seems to have really started when a certain medication was increased.  An increase of that medication will cause shortness of breath, amongst other things.  So, hopefully, that is what is the cause.  Time will tell.

 

 

Second:

Another “Open Wheeler” lost:

 

No, not by passing away – but lost from Open Wheel racing to the “Taxi Cabs”.

 

Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. is now the new Nationwide Series driving champion for 2011.  The question is – why was he never even offered an Indy car ride?  He wasn’t as far as I know.  Heck. Jack Roush could see the talent that he had.  Maybe Ricky didn’t have a bunch of money to bring along for an Indy car ride?  Who knows, for sure?

 

Here’s a biography that I found for him:

 

http://www.stenhousejr.com/index.php?q=bio

 

And, his website:

 

http://www.stenhousejr.com/

 

 

 

 

Third:

I have to apologize here – I didn’t get the name of the 10 year old girl that sang our National Anthem prior to the Nationwide race this past Saturday, but, damn, why is it that a 10 year old can do such a great job on our Anthem, so why can’t so called “Professional” singers do the same?

 

Fourth:

During qualifying for the Nationwide race last Saturday, Joe Nemecheck was on the track and the announcer was saying that Joe had qualified for every Nationwide race in 2011.  Joe was one of the “Go or go homers”.  Strange how one can qualify for every race and still not have a “guaranteed” starting spot.  I’m not sure, but did Joe have many “Start & Park” Nationwide races in 2011?

 

Fifth:

Many times we read things on the Internet, especially on forums and message boards.  Some “not-so-nice” things came out a few weeks ago about AJ Allmendinger.  After hearing that he is now an ordained minister, I have to take it that what was said on the forum and/or message boards wasn’t true.

 

Sixth:

I’m starting this column on Saturday, instead of Sunday, since I’ll be on the road, on Sunday, with my son, Eric.  So, with an occasional look at the TV and the Nationwide race, I happened to pick up that there will be a “Competition Yellow” on lap 35.  Why?  Face it, if you speak to any NASCAR fan, they’ll tell you that those in NASCAR are the best in the business, right?  So, why do they need that yellow then?

 

Seventh:

Mile and a half racetracks – and “Cookie Cutter” types – might they be one of the main reasons why auto racing is falling off, spectator and viewer wise?  Racing, like in the Nationwide race on Saturday, from Florida – kinda boring, if you know what I mean.  I caught myself dozing off – at around lap 80.  That should not be happening, folks.

 

Eighth:

Title personal for Stewart's crew chief

In part:

"Winning the Sprint Cup Series championship became a classic mission for Tony Stewart. For crew chief Darian Grubb, it was all personal."

“I was told early in the Chase before Charlotte that next year I wasn’t going to be here,” Grubb said late Sunday."

A little more on this can be seen here:

http://chronicle.augusta.com/sports/nascar/2011-11-22/title-personal-stewarts-crew-chief

Note:  While watching “Inside NASCAR” On Showtime this Wednesday, it is still up in the air yet as to what might happen with Darian.  Tony Stewart, who was a guest, via TV, really would not – or maybe could not comment on the subject.

 

Ninth:

The Boo Heard Around The World

Maybe you've heard of this?  Actually, I wasn't at home when the race started, and watching the video, well, there was quite a lot of other noise that was heard.

In part:

"What we are discussing is the viral spread of less than one minute of NASCAR-themed video around the world. Instead of a smiling and happy Tony Stewart, many media outlets chose the Obama booing video to distribute."

More on this, along with quite a few comments at the bottom of the article, can be seen here:

http://dalyplanet.blogspot.com/2011/11/boo-heard-around-world.html

 

Tenth:

If you’re interested – The Dan Wheldon Memorial Donation Page:

http://danwheldonmemorial.com/donate.html

 

Eleventh:

Some good news – Borgers will be open in 2012!  This from Bob Snyder:

Borgers PR

Media Contact

Bob Snyder

bobsnyderphoto@enter.net

The New Borgers Speedway 2012.

“It’s probably the biggest gamble of my life but after the thousands of e-mails and postings of support on Facebook, Twitter and the various message boards  I can not let my Borgers Speedway Family down.”  These were the words of Borgers Speedway owner Glenn Borger as he announced a contract has been awarded to Northeast Site Contractors for the paving of Borgers Speedway.

“Hopefully if the weather co-operates we can have the clay removed, base put down, and the binder asphalt layed before Christmas.  In the spring the top coat of asphalt will be put down and if all goes well we should be able to schedule an April 2012 opening date.”

Wingless 600 Sprints, Slingshots, and Go Karts will be on the Saturday schedule which will be running from 1:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. with the Sprints and Slingshots running in the evening portion of the show. Negotiations are underway for various other divisions which will be announced shortly.

The paving of Borgers Speedway will bring a “New Era” of racing to the 1/7 mile oval in Saylorsburg, Pa.  “All legal problems will be a thing of the past and the sky is the limit to what we intend to do.  Changes are always a good thing.  We did not want to make the change from dirt but we had to deal with the cards that were dealt.  My intentions are to make Borgers Speedway a showplace and the premier 1/7 mile asphalt speedway  in the United States” added Glenn Borger.

 

Twelfth:

From Ernie Saxton:

NEWS FROM:

MOTORSPORTS 2012 PRESENTED BY VP’S SEF SMALL ENGINE FUELS

RACE CAR AND TRADE SHOW

Promoter: Len Sammons @ 609.888.3618

MEDIA CONTACT: Ernie Saxton Communications, Inc.

Ernie Saxton @ 215.752.7797

Fax: 215.752.1518

Cell: 267.934.7286

Email: Esaxton144@aol.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE PLEASE WITH OUR THANKS

WOLFGANG, DOTY AND ARGABRIGHT TO BE PART OF MOTORSPORTS 2012 RACE CAR AND TRADE SHOW

 OAKS, PA November 23, 2011 . . . A sprint car racing legend, a former sprint racing star turned TV personality and an author/TV broadcaster will be appearing at the Motorsports 2012 Presented by VP’s SEF Small Engine Fuels Race Car and Trade Show set for January 20-22nd at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, PA.

 Hall of Fame sprint car racer Doug Wolfgang will join Brad Doty and Dave Argabright as the trio meets fans and sign autographs as part of the Coastal 181 display area at the show both on Friday and Saturday.

 Wolfgang, winner of  107 World of Outlaws sprint car feature races, will be talking about his “Lone Wolf” book that will be available at the Coastal 181 display. The book, written by Wolfgang and Argabright, covers Doug’s five Knoxville Nationals wins and his long sprint car racing career. Wolfgang will also host a FREE sprint car chassis set-up seminar during the show.

 Doty will have copies of his new “Still Wide Open”( second edition) book written with Dave Argabright. It is one of the most inspiring and powerful books in all of motorsports. Doty is a member of the SPEED television crew that covers a number of  sprint car racing events.

 The third member of the trio is one of the most prolific writers in the motorsports business and is a talented TV broadcaster. Argabright has written books on a number of key people in the industry and is currently finalizing a novel on the sport. He hopes to have that new book available at the show.

 All three are looking forward to having the opportunity to chat with fans at the 27th edition of the Motorsports show which is organized by Len Sammons Productions and fills all 255,000 square feet of the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center with everything motorsports.

 More than 200 racing vehicles representing just about all forms of the sport will be on display throughout the three days.

 Show attendees will have the opportunity to meet many local, regional and national motorsports figures and be able to participate in free autograph sessions.

 More than 600 exhibit booths offering 400 plus racing dealers, hardcore manufacturers of racing equipment, and more will be part of the huge show considered the biggest and best of its type in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states.

 There will be free industry seminars, antique race car displays, stage shows, interviews with major figures in the sport, the BPG Racing Ms. Motorsports Contests, the special Metal Fab sponsored Sunday activities for youngsters and so much more.

 Information on exhibiting in the show, booth space is filling very quickly, can be had by telephoning Tim Hogue at 609.888.3618.

 Show information, ticket prices and more can be had by checking in at www.aarn.com.

MEDIA NOTE: Media planning to attend the show should be in touch with Ernie Saxton at 215.752.7797 or by e-mail at Esaxton144@aol.com to make show credential arrangements. Thank you. Ernie Saxton

Ernie Saxton Communications, Inc.

Motorsports Marketing

215.752.7797 - office

386-677-5152 - Florida

267.934.7286 - cell/text

Esaxton144@aol.com

Twitter: @ernsax

www.saxtonsponsormarket.com

 

Thirteenth:

Xmas shopping?

Slot Car stuff:

http://slotcarstore.net/

Rt. 52 629

12508 Beacon, NY 12508

Telephone: +1 845 8385333

Fax: +1 845 8385334

e-mail:  sales@hvraceway.net sales@hvraceway.net

Subscriptions:

http://www.gaternews.com/

http://www.sprintcarandmidget.com/

 

Videos:

Lynn Schaeffer’s Videos – 659 Lynes RoadDillsburg, PA 17019 

Phone:  717- 432-9587

www.lynnschaefferproductions.com

 

 

Fourteenth:

AP Sources: Keselowski fined for EFI criticisms

By JENNA FRYER - AP Auto Racing Writer

Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. People familiar with the punishment say NASCAR has fined Brad Keselowski for comments he made criticizing electronic fuel injection.

The people spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because NASCAR did not publicize the fine.

NASCAR has been privately punishing drivers for making disparaging remarks about the series over the last two years.

The fine is believed to be $25,000.

Keselowski said last week during an appearance at the NASCAR Hall of Fame that the move to fuel injection is "a disaster." He also said NASCAR was pressured into moving from carburetors to EFI by "green initiatives" and called the process "a media circus."

NASCAR in the past quietly fined Ryan Newman for criticizing racing at Talladega, and Denny Hamlin for posts he made on Twitter.

http://www.thatsracin.com/2011/11/17/79261/ap-sources-keselowski-fined-for.html

 

UPDATE:

[NASCAR CEO Brian] France was asked often by the media about the secret fines. "When you cross a line that denigrates the direction of the sport or the quality of racing, we're not going to accept that, not going to accept that,'' France said. "Happy to have any other criticism, any other complaint, happy to hear them all but if I own a restaurant and I say, "You know what? The food in my restaurant is not very good.' We're not going to accept that. It's as simple as that.'' Asked why not reveal the fines, France said: "What would be the benefit? The drivers know exactly what we're after. We have these annual meetings with them, right? And then we semi-annual meetings with them and we meet them every weekend at the track. So they know exactly what we expect out of them and when they don't handle that, the only way we can control that is, obviously, a fining system. Look, don't panic over this. We'll look at it over the offseason. If we need to change it, we'll change it. Not a big deal.''(Virginian Pilot and USA Today)(11-18-2011)

 

Fifteenth:

Some sad news:

I actually received three e-mails on what follows, but this one was forwarded from former ARDC President Ron Lauer:

For Immediate Release

1960 INDIANAPOLIS 500 WINNER RATHMANN DIES AT 83

INDIANAPOLIS, Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2011 - Jim Rathmann, winner of both the 1960 Indianapolis 500 and the international 500-mile "Race of Two Worlds" in 1958 at Monza, Italy, died Wednesday, Nov. 23.

Rathmann passed away in a hospice in Melbourne, Fla., nine days after suffering a seizure at his home. He was 83.

Rathmann, who was inducted into the Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 1993 and the Motorsports Hall of Fame in 2007, already was a three-time runner-up in the "500" (1952, 1957 and 1959) when he scored his greatest victory. And if the 1960 race, with its record 29 lead changes, was not the finest "500" ever held, there can be no question that Rathmann's epic two-hour duel with defending winner Rodger Ward continues to stand out as the Speedway's greatest sustained two-man battle of all time.

For the entire second half of that never-to-be-forgotten classic, Rathmann and Ward were rarely any more than a few feet from each other, exchanging the lead 14 times between them. That number could have been considerably more had not tire wear played into the equation. Long before the days of computer-generated race strategies, two-way radio communication, spotters, and Pace Car-led pack-ups during caution periods, these two wily veterans pretty much had to figure it out for themselves, aided only by a pit board message flashed to them every minute or so.

Ward, an early leader, had stalled on his first of three planned stops, losing at least a half-minute. He raced hard to regain lost ground and caught up with Rathmann just before the halfway mark, fully cognizant that in the process he had placed undue stress on his tires. They swapped the lead several times before Ward decided to run behind Rathmann for a while and let him dictate the pace, both aware that third-placed Johnny Thomson was running a comfortable margin behind them. That was until the pit board signs began advising them that the advantage was shrinking. When it fell to only 10 seconds, they determined it was time to go.

The lead changed hands six more times in the final 30 laps until Ward happen to notice tell-tale discoloration appearing in the center of his right front tire, indicating that the cords were about to show through. He led as late as Lap 197 before reluctantly slowing down to salvage second as a greatly relieved Rathmann nursed his ailing tiresto the finish and won at a record average speed of 138.767 mph.

Had Ward prevailed, Rathmann, who led exactly half of the 200 laps that day, would have held the dubious distinction of being history's only four-time runner-up at Indianapolis.

As an illustration of just how different things were in those days, the winning Ken-Paul Special was a brand new Offenhauser-powered car Rathmann had commissioned from his old friend A. J. Watson on behalf of Rathmann's partners, Kenny Rich and Paul Lacy. Rathmann and his chief mechanic, Chickie Hirashima, drove a station wagon out to Watson's shop in Glendale, Calif., to pick up the car whereupon they loaded it on to an open trailer and then towed it back to the Midwest themselves. More than rewarded by the eventual first-place prize money checks totaling a record $110,000, Rathmann later estimated the entire investment at only $35,000.

Born in Los Angeles on July 16, 1928, Rathmann started life as Royal Richard Rathmann, becoming "Jim" in the immediate post World War II years when he began racing hot rods as an underage teenager. He borrowed the identity of his two-and-half-year older brother, James, who later raced extensively and won the 1958 "500" pole position as "Dick" Rathmann. Although they were later to modify their dates of birth from time to time, they thankfully avoided further confusion by never professionally using their given names as they appeared on their driver's licenses and so forth, Richard Rathmann known for the remainder of his life as Jim, and James as Dick.

A contemporary, since his earliest racing days, of Troy Ruttman, Jack McGrath, Pat Flaherty, Don Freeland, Andy Linden and numerous other "500" stars of the future, Jim Rathmann moved to Chicago in 1948 to race hot rods with Andy Granatelli's Chicago-based Hurricane Hot Rod Association.

In 1949, Rathmann, Ruttman and Flaherty all made their Indianapolis debuts, Flaherty (who missed the show) being, at 23, the only one legally over 21. Rathmann, claiming to be 24, but really only 20, took his "rookie" test in a car he owned himself, but sponsored by Grancor Corporation, the hot rod business belonging to and operated by the Granatelli brothers. Rathmann ended up qualifying the Pioneer Auto Repair Special for John "The Popper" Lorenz and finishing 11th.

In 1952, driving for the Granatelli brothers, Rathmann finished second in the "500," beaten only by Troy Ruttman, his boyhood friend and fellow hotrod club member.

Rathmann, who was also runner-up to Sam Hanks in 1957 and to Ward in 1959, drove in a total of 14 Indianapolis 500 Mile Races between 1949 and 1963, leading at some stage during six of them for a total of 153 laps. At the time of his retirement in May 1964, he had completed 2,295 laps in competition and was within less than a full race of claiming the all-time record, only Cliff Bergere (2,452 laps) and Mauri Rose (2,420 laps) having completed a greater number.

Having travelled to Monza for the invitational 500-miler in 1957 merely as a potential relief driver since his regular car owner, Lindsey Hopkins had chosen not to send a car, Rathmann brokered a deal for the 1958 contest.

Underwritten by Bob Wilke of Leader Cards, sponsor of his recent fifth-place effort with Hopkins at Indianapolis, Rathmann leased a car from John Zink, retaining Zink's chief mechanic, Watson, another of Rathmann's hot rod cronies from the late 1940s. The 500-mile race at the steeply-banked and bone-jarring 2.64-mile concrete bowl was divided into three legs, with intervals between each. Rathmann won all three and was the undisputed overall winner at the incredible average speed of 166.722 mph.

That association led to Wilke forming the Leader Card Racing Team, with Watson leaving Zink to head up the operation and build new cars. At one point, Leader Card intended running a two-driver team, with Rathmann joining Ward. Then Hopkins made an arrangement to purchase the second brand-new "Watson" for Rathmann, Ward going on to win, with Rathmann recording his third runner-up finish.

By the time the 1959 "500" was held, Rathmann had further demonstrated his great skill and bravery by winning a 100-mile USAC National Championship race April 4 at the brand-new Daytona International Speedway. Far better suited to the NASCAR stock cars, which had ushered in the Daytona 500 in February with Lee Petty winning the caution-free inaugural at 135.521 mph, Rathmann ripped off the 100 miles in the astonishing time of only 35 minutes. Scrunched down in the cockpit of his fish-tailing front-engined Offenhauser-powered Watson "roadster" and wearing a short-sleeved polo shirt with only an open-faced Cromwell-type helmet for protection, he averaged a breathtaking 170.261 mph.

Three-times the Midwest hot rod champion (1948, 1950 and 1951) and third-ranking AAA stock car driver of 1955, the diversified Rathmann was one of the first oval track specialists to dabble in sports car racing, taking part in the Sebring 12 Hours three times (sharing the 12th place-finishing and class-winning Corvette with Dick Doane in 1958) and racing several times at Nassau. He was even down to drive the Tec-Mec Maserati at the inaugural Formula One Grand Prix of the United States at Sebring in 1959 although he ended up not competing. He twice ran in the Carrera Panamericana, sharing an Oldsmobile in 1952 with Frank "Rebel" Mundy, and he even took part in the Miami-Nassau powerboat race one year, sustaining a broken foot along the way while trying to fix a mechanical problem.

An entrepreneur from his earliest days, Rathmann graduated from a paper route to running a hot rod shop while still in his teens. A muffler shop in Chicago was followed by a speed shop in Miami, a used car business and eventually a huge Cadillac and Chevrolet dealership in Melbourne, Fla., the latter being contingent upon his retirement, an agreement upon which he "fudged" for at least two more years.

There was also a very successful go-kart business which produced the highly sought-after Rathmann Xterminator and even an adventuresome episode of his life in which he held the rights toretrieving centuries-old treasure chests, firearms and cannons from sunken pirate ships off the coast of Florida.

Close friends with all of the early astronauts, Rathmann actually pulled off a most unlikely coup by having one of them discreetly affix a Rathmann car dealership decal to the famous golf cart which was driven on the surface of the moon! Yet another venture was the G.C.R. Corporation team which contested the USAC championship series in 1966 and 1967, the "G" being for Gus Grissom, the "C" for Gordon Cooper and "R" for Rathmann.

One of the fascinating character traits of Rathmann was that he always seemed so nonchalant in the winner's circle, even at Indianapolis and Monza where he'd be poker-faced and stoic, standing up in the cockpit with loosened helmet straps dangling around his neck and barely smiling as he waved one hand at just above waist level.

It was a misleading illusion.

In fact, this very down-to-earth and unpretentious individual happened to be a fun-loving, chronic practical joker who seemed up for just about any mischievous adventure. A very modest man, he was most gracious to the fans, benched-raced with the best of them and told stories laced with a most infectious giggle. Questions about his own career were usually passed off with brief and rather evasive responses as he preferred instead to tell stories about his colleagues, tears of mirth rolling his cheeks as he relayed the details of yet another prank.

But Rathmann was a serious racer, and he loved the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. To him, the month of May at the track was "everything," the other 11 months always being filled with plenty of activities, but with the focus clearly on the next migration to IMS. In spite of his deep competitive spirit, he was a great sportsman who was close with many of his contemporaries, photographs taken in the aftermath of the 1957 and 1959 Indianapolis races indicating that he obviously had great affection for both Hanks and Ward, who had narrowly defeated him.

Ill health in recent years had prevented Rathmann from making his annual pilgrimage to his beloved Speedway where, for many years he had matched his golfing skills with Ward, Lloyd Ruby, Parnelli Jones, James Garner and others. Six times the Pace Car driver for the "500," Rathmann's final appearance in the city of Indianapolis came at the Convention Center in February 2009 for the Speedway's Centennial Era Gala, where he was the oldest and earliest of the 19 Indianapolis 500 winners on hand.

Rathmann is survived by wife Kay, sons Jimmy and Jay, stepsons Zack and Tosh Pence, five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

In place of flowers the family requests that donations be made to:

 William Childs Hospice House

381 Medplex Parkway

Palm Bay, FL 32907

…I5002011-074…

Media Contact:         J. Douglas Boles, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, (317) 492-6412 or (317) 750-9277, dboles@brickyard.com

Tom Surber, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, (317) 492-6594, tsurber@brickyard.com

 

 

Coming up:

 

Turkey Derby:

This year it will be held on November 25th, 26th and 27th.  On Saturday, the 26th, racing action will include:

Open/Tour Modifieds, Dirt Modifieds, Dirt Sportsman, WALL/SK Modifieds, Sportsman/Crate cars, Late Models, Factory Stocks, Street Stocks, Legends and TQ’s.  Practice on November 12th and 19th.  For Sunday, 8 cylinder and 4 cylinder Enduros – 200 laps, Trux and Ladies plus more???

 

From their website:

Turkey Derby XXXVIII is a two racing tradition set for Friday November 25 and Saturday November 26 during the daylight hours. On November 25, practice will start at 8:30 a.m., while qualifying will start at noon and feature racing will begin at 2:00 p.m. On November 26, practice will start at 8:30 a.m., with qualifying set for 11:00 a.m. and feature racing set for 1:00 p.m.

Pit gates will open at 6:30 a.m., with pre-purchased grandstand seating opening at 9:30 a.m. and grandstand seating opening at 10:00 a.m. on both days.

Friday main event action will feature the paved Sportsman cars, the dirt Sportsman cars, Late Models, Legend Cars and the Factory Stocks. On Saturday, the Touring Modifieds, Wall Modifieds, dirt Modifieds, TQ Midgets and Street Stocks will all see main event action.

More info can be found here:  www.wallspeedway.com

 

 

Eastern Museum of Motor Racing (EMMR):

We will re-open for our annual Holiday Open House the first
weekend of December; always lots of fun and food.  That’s the 3rd and 4th.
 
Starting every Thursday during the winter from 6-9 pm,
Lynn Paxton and the gang will be holding weekly work parties. 
We would love to have some volunteers step up and help arrange
cars and displays in the new wing.   Without all the great volunteers
in this organization, EMMR doesn't exist.
 
So thanks to all of you !!!

 

Northeastern Vintage Dirt Modified Racing Club

NVDMRC Club Banquet — Sunday, December 4 at 1:00pm at Mamakating Town Park.

RSVP to Ed Stevens at 845-386-3484

 

Indoor Go-Kart racing in Syracuse:

Yup, almost that time again – December 10, 2011.  Back when my grandson was racing Karts, we made a few of those shows.  The racing was top notch; the building the track is in was both heated and ventilated.  The only downfall was the possible weather conditions – you know – Syracuse, N.Y. early December – Mother Nature.  However bad the weather was or had been, they always got their racing in.

Info on this event can be found if you go here, below, and check out the upper left hand corner for additional links.

http://www.cnyroadrace.com/indoor/

 

Found on Jayski’s website:

Kurt Busch tirade at Jerry Punch:

During Sunday's Ford 400 at Homestead, analyst Jerry Punch tried to interview Kurt Busch after the driver was forced out of the race with transmission problems. What resulted was a profanity-laced tirade by Busch who didn't want to wait until the ESPN control booth threw it to Punch. In the end, Punch decided he had enough and walked away from Busch telling his producers, "Never mind, never mind."(USA Today)(11-22-2011)

UPDATE:

Penske Racing extends its apologies to Dr. Jerry Punch, our media partners and our sponsors and fans for Kurt Busch's inappropriate actions in Homestead on Sunday. These actions do not represent Penske Racing and are inconsistent with the company's standards for behavior, respect for others and professionalism. This matter is being reviewed internally with no further comment at this time.(Penske Racing)(11-22-2011)

UPDATE 2:

Kurt Busch Statement: "Unfortunately, our result in the season-ending race at Homestead on Sunday was not what we had hoped for as a team. In my frustration with the loss of my transmission early in the race, I let my emotions get the better of me. I regret having done this and apologize to the sponsors of Penske Racing , to NASCAR, its fans, to the media and in particular, Dr. Jerry Punch."(Tom Roberts PR)(11-22-2011)

 

Addington leaves Penske:

Steve Addington finally came clean with #22-Kurt Busch on Monday. Busch said Addington called him around 4 p.m. Monday afternoon to inform the driver he was "indeed leaving" the team. Addington is expected to join Stewart-Haas Racing.(Fox Sports)(11-22-2011)

 

Grubb comments on his future with Stewart-Haas Racing:

 

On Tuesday, November 15th, the final guest on the weekly NASCAR Teleconference was Darian Grubb, the crew chief of the #14 Office Depot Mobil 1 Chevy driven by Tony Stewart. The 14 team has a 3-point deficit in the standings and is entering this weekend as one of the closest points battles in NASCAR history. Besides much talk about the Chase, a couple questions were asked about Grubb's future with Stewart Haas Racing after this season.


Q. There's been so much speculation about the team. You guys have been without a competition director for half of the year. Are you going to be back with Stewart-Haas next year?


DARIAN GRUBB: We'll leave that to after Sunday and figure out what's going to happen there. Our goal is to win the championship and we'll decide everything else after that.


Q. Along those same lines, has it been difficult at all to work through the last few months with all the rumors and uncertainty and not knowing necessarily who is going to be in what position where next year?


DARIAN GRUBB: Definitely not. We've still got the same goals we've always had that we want to go out and win the championship. Winning races is the way to do that. What we've done the last nine weeks, we've shown that we have the capability to do that. We're almost 50-50 on that, so hopefully we can continue that streak and get it to be a 50% deal and win at Homestead.(in part from the NASCAR Teleconference Transcript)(11-15-2011)


UPDATE:

Grubb is expected to be promoted to Director of Competition at Stewart Haas Racing next season, replaced atop the pit box by current [#22-Kurt Busch] Penske Racing crew chief Steve Addington. Penske Racing holds an option year on Addington's contract, however, and sources say team owner Roger Penske has not yet agreed to grant him his release (Sirius Speedway).

AND

Another scenario....am hearing Grubb could be headed back to Hendrick Motorsports either taking over the crew chief duties for #48-Jimmie Johnson with current crew chief Chad Knaus moving up to Director of Competition at Hendrick Motorsports or Grubb taking that spot.(11-17-2011)


UPDATE 2:

Crew chief Darian Grubb, who made several key calls in helping #14-Tony Stewart win his third Sprint Cup championship on Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway, is looking for a job. Grubb said after Stewart won the title by a tiebreaker over Carl Edwards that he was told midway through the Chase at Charlotte that he would not be back with Stewart-Haas Racing in 2012. Sources close to the situation told ESPN.com that Grubb has been offered a job to return to Hendrick Motorsports, where worked for four seasons as an engineer and administrative assistant. Sources also said Grubb, who won a Daytona 500 as an interim crew chief for Jimmie Johnson, has been contacted by Michael Waltrip Racing and several other teams about a crew chief job. Stewart declined to discuss whether winning the title has changed his mind on Grubb possibly returning.
Among the speculation is that Stewart will hire former Joe Gibbs Racing crew chief Greg Zipadelli to be his director of competition and Steve Addington, the crew chief for #22-Kurt Busch at Penske Racing, to be his crew chief. JGR president J.D. Gibbs told ESPN.com before Sunday's finale that he planned to have Zipadelli, who is under contract for 2012 and beyond, back next season with Joey Logano and the #20 team. Sources said Addington is not expected to return to Penske Racing, but could not confirm where he would go. Grubb said he would sit down with Stewart this week and see where things stand. Asked if winning the title would change things, he said, "It all depends.''(ESPN)(11-21-2011)

 

Kyle Busch uncertain if he will run other series in 2012:

Toyota NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, #18-Kyle Busch, in part from a Toyota Racing Transcript:
Q) Do you know if you will race in the Nationwide or Truck Series in 2012?
Busch: "No, not yet. We're working through all of the schedules. The schedules hadn't been put together prior to Texas and still haven't been put together yet either."(Toyota Racing)(11-20-2011)

 

Bayne looking to run the Rolex 24 at Daytona:

Trevor Bayne is trying to work with his manufacturer [Ford] to land one of the spots on a Grand-Am Road Racing Series Daytona Prototype team for the 50th running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona International Speedway. "I'm working on Ford to try and run the Daytona 24 hour race," Bayne said. "If I do that I will be doing some testing. I have never driven one. I think the Daytona Prototype cars are just sick. They look like something that you can just manhandle and have a lot of fun with. I'm sure there's a lot more finesse to it than I'm making it sound. I think it's going to be a lot of fun to get out there and just be a part of the 24. That's something that all drivers kind of have a checklist of things they want to drive." Along with the running the Daytona 24 in a DP car, Bayne's wish list of cars to compete in includes a rally car in the X Games, a dirt late model and a modified at Concord Motorsports Park.(Motor Racing Network)(11-20-2011)

 

2011 Sprint Cup Driver Championship Chase Points Standings:
[after Homestead, race 36 of 36 and Chase race 10 of 10]
1) #14-Tony Stewart [5 wins], 2403 - 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion
2) #99-Carl Edwards [1 win], 2403
3) #29-Kevin Harvick [4 wins], 2345, -58
4) #17-Matt Kenseth [3 wins], 2330, -73
5) #2-Brad Keselowski [3 wins], 2319, -84
6) #48-Jimmie Johnson [2 wins], 2304, -99
7) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. [0 wins], 2290, -113
8) #24-Jeff Gordon [3 wins], 2287, -116
9) #11-Denny Hamlin [1 win], 2284, -119
10) #39-Ryan Newman [1 win], 2284, -119
top 10 go to the banquet in Vegas
11) #22-Kurt Busch [2 wins], 2262, -141
12) #18-Kyle Busch [4 wins], 2246, -157
(ties broken by 1sts, 2nds, 3rd, etc)
See drivers championship points standings on Jayski's Drivers Points Standings page.(11-20-2011)

 

2011 Sprint Cup Driver Points Standings [not the Chase]:
[after Homestead, race 36 of 36]:
using the CURRENT points system, but NOT the Chase system, just points.
rank, car#, driver, points, behind
1) #99-Carl Edwards (x) [1 win], 1278
2) #29-Kevin Harvick (x)[4 wins], 1200, -78
3) #14-Tony Stewart (x)[5 wins], 1191, -87
4) #48-Jimmie Johnson (x)[2 wins], 1187, -91
5) #17-Matt Kenseth (x)[3 wins], 1183, -95
6) #24-Jeff Gordon (x)[3 wins], 1150, -128
7) #18-Kyle Busch (x)[4 wins], 1124, -154
8) #22-Kurt Busch (x)[2 wins], 1115, -163
9) #39-Ryan Newman (x)[1 win], 1103, -175
10) #2-Brad Keselowski (x)[3 wins], 1079, -199
11) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr.(x), 1071, -207
12) #33-Clint Bowyer [1 win], 1047, -231
13) #4-Kasey Kahne [1 win], 1041, -237
14) #11-Denny Hamlin (x)[1 win], 1028, -250
15) #43-A.J. Allmendinger, 1013, -265
(x) = chase driver
Do NOT have the standings using the old points system used from 1975-2010
Calculated it a few times and saw no major differences in the standings
Also, no plans to add in all the drivers who didn't get drivers pts in any of the others series
(11-20-2011)

 

Andy Lally returning to Grand-Am Series:

Andy Lally will return to the Grand-Am Series in 2012 after spending the last season in NASCAR. Lally will drive for Magnus Racing in the Rolex Sports Car Series GT division next year. He was the rookie of the year in NASCAR's elite Sprint Cup Series. He drove for underfunded TRG Motorsports but left the team before last weekend's season finale. Lally ran 30 NASCAR races this season, with a season-best finish of 19th at Talladega. He's hoping to still run NASCAR, particularly road-course events. Lally is a three-time Rolex Series champion and Grand-Am's all-time mileage and podiums leader. He's also a three-time Rolex 24 at Daytona winner. He will team with owner/driver John Potter. The two teamed together in 2009 in the Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge.(Associated Press/ESPN)(11-23-2011)

 

Stewart comments on crew chief rumors:

From Stewart's media teleconference Tuesday afternoon:
Q. Penske Racing announced that Steve Addington won't return to its organization next year. Are you interested in him being your crew chief or have you changed your mind at all as far as Darian is concerned?


TONY STEWART:
We're looking at all of our options right now. After we get through with all the media obligations today, I'll getting to back to the shop and we'll sit down as a group and try to come up with a decision and figure out. We already know some options that are available, and we'll try to sit down and see what we think is the best option and decision for the company.(Chevy PR)(11-23-2011)

 

Homestead race earns largest Sprint Cup viewership ever for ESPN:

The final race of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup featured a down-to-the-wire battle for the championship and earned the largest viewership ever for a NASCAR Sprint Cup race telecast on ESPN. With a peak audience of 10.5 million when the checkered flag fell on champion Tony Stewart at 8:08 p.m. ET, ESPN's telecast of the Ford 400 from Homestead-Miami Speedway on Sunday, Nov. 20, averaged 6,799,000 viewers and earned a 4.6 household coverage rating (4.0 U.S. rating), according to the Nielsen Company. The viewership average broke ESPN's previous record of 6,668,000 viewers for the 2008 Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis. Final figures do not include a rain delay from 4:45-6 p.m. Viewership was up 21 percent and the rating was up 18 percent from last year's event, which also aired on ESPN and earned a 3.9 coverage rating and averaged 5,605,000 viewers. In addition, the 2011 race out-delivered the 2009 race that aired on ABC and earned 5,607,000 viewers and a 3.6 U.S. rating. Ratings for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup on ESPN and ABC increased 14.8 percent from 2010, averaging a 3.1 U.S. rating compared to 2.7 for last year (not including the rain-delayed Chicagoland Speedway event, which was run on a Monday). Also, excluding rainout races, ESPN and ABC's NASCAR Sprint Cup coverage for 2011 averaged a 3.2 U.S. rating, up more than six percent from a 3.0 for last year.(ESPN), see past 2011 ratings and 4-year comparison chart on the 2011 TV Ratings page.(11-22-2011)

 

Significant layoffs at Roush:

Multiple sources have confirmed significant layoffs this week at Roush Fenway Racing. According to sources, more than 100 workers were released by the team Monday and [Tuesday]. One source put the number at 125. Prior to today, the team employed about 440 people. Roush Fenway is expected to reduce its NASCAR Sprint Cup car count from four cars to three next season, with the #6 driven by David Ragan likely to be shuttered. At last report, the team is also without sponsors for the #17 of Matt Kenseth. The team may also reduce the size of its NASCAR Nationwide Series operations from three cars to one or two.(SPEED)(1-22-2011)

 

Martin and Waltrip's car will be #55 rather than #00:

Mark Martin and Michael Waltrip's Toyota Camrys will carry the #55 during the 2012 and 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series seasons. The number commemorates Charlie Loudermilk's founding of Aaron's, Inc. in 1955. Martin will drive in 25 Sprint Cup events each of the next two seasons, sharing the #55 Aaron's Dream Machine with Waltrip who will drive seven events with Aaron's sponsorship. Martin will join #15-Clint Bowyer and #56-Martin Truex Jr. in the MWR stable of drivers. Martin will begin his tenure with MWR at the 2012 Daytona 500. Waltrip will run the remaining restrictor plate races plus the race in his home state of Kentucky. MWR plans to run a combination of drivers and sponsor partners to fill the remaining races when Martin and Waltrip are not behind the wheel.(Michael Waltrip Racing)(11-23-2011)

Note:  Nothing said, as yet, about the # 00 and what might happen with it.

 

 

Going back, in time – in racing history:

Note# 1:  Most of the following information was found here: 

http://www.wheelsofspeed.com/history.html

 

Note: 2:  Yes, most of this info is mostly from Open Wheel racing from “Back in the day”.

 

Covering the days from November 25th to December 1st:

 

NOVEMBER 25

1908

Jimmy Wilburn... Born ... He won a non-points Championship Car race at Lakewood Speedway in March of 1946 which is the first known Champ Car race to be held after the end of World War II. Later that year he drove in the 1946 Indianapolis 500 driving an Alfa Romeo and started 16th and retired after 52 laps with engine trouble, credited with the 19th finishing position. He was inducted in the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 1994

Ottis Stine... Born ... Otis was a Pennsylvania Sprint Car driver who was a founder member of the York County Racing Club in 1979. He drove his first race in 1934. His main claim to fame is that he was the first ever driver to turn a racing lap of the legendary Williams Grove speedway in 1934. He attempted to run at Indy in 1952 in a Scopa-Offenhauser, but failed to qualify. Stine once finished second in the AAA points and when he retired in 1954, he held numerous track records.

1920

Gaston Chevrolet... Died ... He was the younger brother of famous automobile designer and racer Louis Chevrolet, was killed during a race at the Los Angeles Speedway board track in Beverly Hills, California.

1937

Ronney Householder won the Turkey Night Grand Prix 150 AAA Midget race over Sam Hanks, Lou Schneider, Karl Young and Mel Hansen at the Gilmore Stadium,Hollywood, CA.

Note:  Funny how when Midget racing was in it's infancy that they could hold 150 lap races, yet in today's modern world, they can't/don't.

 

1940

Joe Gibbs... Born ... The former NFL football coach and owner of a NASCAR stockcar team.

1982

Walt Ader... Died ... AAA driver from the 1930's to the early 1950's.

1990

Billy Vukovich III... Died ... He was a three time starter of the Indianapolis 500. The grandson of two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Bill Vukovich and the son of Bill Vukovich II, Vukovich III was the 1988 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year. Billy was killed in a sprint car race at Mesa Marin Raceway in Bakersfield, California, in 1990. His grandfather was killed while leading the 1955 Indianapolis 500..

Jeff Gordon won the CRA Sprint Car race at the Mesa Marin Raceway, Bakersfield,CA. Jimmy Sills was second followed by Rip Williams, Ron Shuman and John Redican.

 

NOVEMBER 26

1936

Ronney Householder won the Turkey Night Grand Prix 150 AAA Midget race over Sam Hanks, Lou Schneider, Pat Cunningham and Johnny McDowell at the Gilmore Stadium,Hollywood, CA.

Note:  Hey, my bad on that 1937 race, above.  This one is a year earlier!

 

1956

Dale Jarrett... Born ... He is the 1999 NASCAR Winston Cup Champion and the son of two-time NASCAR Grand National Champion Ned Jarrett. He is the younger brother of Glenn Jarrett, a former NASCAR driver himself and pit commentator. He is also the father of former Busch Series racer Jason Jarrett.

1980

Pete DePaolo... Died ... AAA driver from 1922 to 1934.

 

 

 

NOVEMBER 27

1976

Jim Hendrickson won the "Third Annual Turkey Derby" 150-lap Modified Stock Car race at the Wall Stadium, Wall Township, NJ. Maynard Troyer was second followed by Geoff Bodine, Ron Bouchard, Jerry Cook, Freddy Harbach, Dick Dunn, Charlie Jarzombek, Jim Hoffman and Pete Fiandaca.

Note:  Yup, this race is still being run, in this day and age!

 

NOVEMBER 28

1935

Ted Sizemore won the Turkey Night Grand Prix 100 AAA Midget race over Pat Warren, Karl Young, Andy Guthrie and Bob Ware at the Gilmore Stadium,Hollywood, CA.

Note:   Damn!  1935 and extra distance midget race???

 

1963

Lee Wallard ... Died ... AAA driver from the 1940's and 50's. Lee ran the Indy 500 four times 1948 - 1951. Wallard retired from racing after being burned in a racing crash, shortly after winning the 1951 Indianapolis 500.

Note:  It was only 4 days after he won the 500.  Back then, the 500 was run on May 30th, and on whatever day in the week that date fell on.

 

1992

Earl Motter... Died ... AAA/USAC driver from1955 to 1959

 

NOVEMBER 29

1934

Bob Swanson won the Turkey Night Grand Prix 75 AAA Midget race at the Gilmore Stadium,Hollywood, CA.

Note:  OK, I give up!  Yes, to me, 75 laps is a long distance race.  Wow!  77 years ago!

 

1944

Lee Kunzman ... Born ... A former driver in the USAC Sprint , USAC and CART Championship Car series. He raced in the Champ Series in 1969, 1972-1973 and 1975-1980 seasons, with 48 combined career starts, including the 1971-1972, 1977, and 1979 Indianapolis 500. He finished in the top ten 21 times, with his best finish in 2nd position in 1979 at Atlanta. Early in his career, he was 1967 IMCA sprint car Rookie of the Year. Injuries limited his driving in 1970-71 and 1973-74. After completing his driving career, he became the general manager for Hemelgarn Racing. Kunzman was inducted in the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 2006.

1975

Graham Hill... Died ... British racing driver and two-time Formula One World Champion. Graham Hill is the only driver to win the so-called Triple Crown of Motorsport, which is alternatively defined as winning either: the Indianapolis 500 (won by Hill in 1966), the 24 Hours of Le Mans (1972) and the Monaco Grand Prix (1963, 1964, 1965, 1968, 1969) or the Indianapolis 500, the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Formula One World Championship (1962, 1968). Using either definition, Hill is still the only person ever to have accomplished this feat. Graham was killed when his Piper Aztec aeroplane (which he was piloting at the time) crashed in foggy conditions over Arkley Golf Course in North London.

 

NOVEMBER 30

1974

Gil Hearne won the "First Annual Turkey Derby" 150-lap Modified Stock Car race at the Wall Stadium, Wall Township, NJ. Freddy Harbach was second followed by Jerry Bartlett, Tom Baldwin, Ken Bouchard, Jack Ely, Tom Comerford, Charlie Kremer Jr., Bill Brice, Geoff Bodine, Dick Robbins and Ron Bouchard.

2002

Tony Stewart won the USAC Sprint Car race at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway (1/3p),Las Vegas,NV. Jeff Gardner finished second followed by Tracy Hines, Brian McClish and Kevin Feeney.

Tony Stewart won the USAC Midget race at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway (1/3p),Las Vegas,NV. Dave Darland finished second followed by J.J. Yeley, Ron Gregory and Bobby East.

 

DECEMBER 1

1963

Marco Greco ... Born ... A Brazilian racecar driver who competed in the Indy Racing League from 1996 to 1999. His best finish in the season points was 4th in 1997. He made four starts in the Indianapolis 500 with a best finish of 14th in 1998. He previously competed in the CART World Series in full seasons in 1993 for Sovereign Motorsports and in 1994 for Arciero Racing and partial seasons in 1995 and 1996 for Dick Simon Racing, Galles Racing, and Team Scandia.

Wendell Scott took first place in the Grand National race at the one-mile dirt track Speedway Park in Jacksonville, Florida, becoming the first black driver ever to win a NASCAR event.

1972

Stanton Barrett ... Born ... A NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series driver and Hollywood stuntman.

2004

On December 1, 2004, the wife and I were visiting our daughter down in Florida.  At the time I was writing for www.openwheelracing.com a website that Lenny Calinoff had.  Lenny was really the one major influence in getting me to write about motor sports - well, with some additional help from the late John LeVan, I should add.  It was on December 1, 2004 when Lenny left us, due to a heart problem.  Damn, but I still miss him and our private messages and the nightly "Chat room" that we had back then.

 

 

 

News from the AARN:

http://www.aarn.com/

 

From their November 15th issue:

 

Last weeks issue was there annual Race Car Builders Guide.  There were 36 pages devoted to various businesses etc etc that are in the racing family.  Also some fine articles, too.

 

Last week, when they raced at Hagerstown, the promoter found that he was going to be about $20,000.00 short of the advertised $100,000.00 purse.  Prize monies and the amount of laps for each class were cut back.  Then car owner Ernie Davis called the promoter from his cell phone in the pit area, and told him he’d cover the $20,000.00 shortfall.  The purses went back to normal, but the cut back in laps stayed.  An excellent gesture on the part of Mr. Davis, for sure!

 

Mike Roselli is still President of the ATQMARA, and Buddy Sload the Vice President.  The ATQMRA will be having their banquet on December 10th at Williamson’s Restaurant in Horsham, Pa.

 

Tony Stewart has hired Bobby Santos, III to run his midget at the Turkey Night race at Irwindale, CA.

Note:  Remember when that race used to be on TV?

 

The RoC Pavement Modifieds will stay on 13” tires in 2012.  Andrew Harpell is hoping for 9 – 12 races for that group.

 

Did you know that Troyer is now making Mod Lites?

 

In 2012, the URC will be going with American Racer tires.  URC will be appearing, so far, at Delaware, Big Diamond, Port Royal, Bridgeport, Georgetown, New Egypt, Grandview, Lincoln, Williams Grove, Selinsgrove, Rolling Wheels and Black Rock.

Note:  There was a time when the URC would visit OCFS quite a few times during the racing season.  Wonder why they don’t anymore?

 

Scott Dixon, Graham Rahal, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Jay Howard, Alex Tagliani and Tomas Scheckter will represent Indycar in a Kart race on December 11th at the Conseco Field House in Indianapolis, in conjunction with the International Motor Sports Industry Show.  So far, from NASCAR, Tony Stewart, AJ Allmendinger and Austin Dillon are scheduled to compete in the race.  IAME Parilla X30 engines will power the racing Karts.

 

Cody Darrah was not issued a check for $15,000.00 for finishing 15th in the WoO Sprint Car Series point standings.  Seems he missed ONE race.  That one missed race violated the “Platinum Agreement”.  He did get a certificate for a Butler-Built Seat for being the top rookie, however.  His car owner, Kasey Kahne did get a check for $15,000.00 though.  Darrah was told by Kahne that Kahne would have his lawyer look into the deal.  Bill Rose, who didn’t compete full time with the WoO was going to be declared as the top rookie, but he declined the award.  When Darrah missed that one race, his car, however, was there.

 

Banquet season has started, and there were quite a few articles on various banquets.  Big Diamond, Star Speedway, Fonda and Shangri La had articles, bun none of them mentioned any amount of monies handed out.  Williams Grove had their banquet and what they were handing out, money wise, has been covered previously.  Stewart Friesen got $8,000.00 for winning the U/R championship.  Jared Zimbardi got $5,025.00 for being the Patriot Sprint Tour driving champion.

 

Buck Buckley, Sprint Car driver and car builder, was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma – a rare blood cancer, over a year ago.  Thanks to a stem cell transplant, the cancer is currently in remission.

 

 

Lenny Sammons:

With the URC not really having a banquet, the URC’s championship team will hold its own party on December 10th at the King of Prussia (Pa) Fire Hall.  Invited guests will be treated to a buffet dinner, with a cash bar.

 

Ernie Saxton:

Ernie says he can remember when Michael Waltrip called David Reutimann “The Franchise”.  To Mr. Saxton, it looks like, so far, four good cars won’t be back in competition in Cup next year – The Red Bull # 4 and # 83, The # 33 driven by Clint Bowyer and the Roush # 6. 

Dave Blaney and the Golden Corral sponsored car owned by Tom Baldwin, made more than $3,000.000.00 – basically as a “Start and Park” entrant in 2011.

 

Brett Deyo:

Brett did mention that Ryan Godown is looking for a ride in 2012, since the Johnny Rea car will not be racing.

 

Todd Heintzelman:

In his column, there was a photo of Brian Leppo being the recipient of the Jerry Reigle Sportsmanship Award at the Williams Grove banquet.  In that photo was an excellent large photo of Jerry.

In 2011, there were 32 different drivers that won 410 Sprint Car races in the Central Pennsylvania area.

 

Randy Kane:

Randy had quite a bit about Bruce and Jesse Kline and their plans for the 2012-racing season, which, as of now is for them to compete again at OCFS.  Jesse will have a new Hig-Fab chassis.

 

Brett Deyo in the Car Builders section:

Brett was making mention of the Roush/Yates (used) racing engines.  When they first started out, they were in a building that was 5,000 square feet.  From that they went to one of 10,000, and now to one of 40,000 feet and still growing.  They’re doing quite good with short track engines.

Info on them can be found here:

Roush-Yates Performance  122 Knob Hill Rd  Mooresville, NC 28117  www.roushyatesparts.com   or www.roushyates.com  There hours are 7 AM – 6 PM M-F and 9 AM – 1 PM on Sat. and phone number is 1-877-604-8077.

 

Mike Kostic:

Mike was comparing engine costs – from like 10 years ago when a 600 Micro Sprint engine – an F3 Honda 4 Cylinder would go for $800.00 for a good used one.  All you would need would be a set of 1200 Alcohol Carbs, and you could run a full season.  Today, a 600 engine would run you in the neighborhood of $6,000.00.  A URC 360 today is about $30,000.00, which is about 80% of the cost of a 410.  A 305 RaceSaver, CRSA TSRS and PASS in Pennsylvania, cost $18,000.00 to $20,000.00.  With spares (new, not used) $30,000.00.  A 600 - $24,000.00

 

Herb Anastor:

He covered the history and evolution of racing seat belts and shoulder harnesses.  The first one to use any kind of belt was Barney Oldfield, in 1922.  Seat belts started getting more popular after WW II – with them being surplus items that were adapted from Army and Navy airplanes.  In the late 1940’s, Al Tasnady used a couple of trouser belts.  Frankie Schneider used a rope that was tied around his seat.  Later on the “Sam Browne” belts came into use.  They went around the waist and had another belt that went over the shoulder.  NASCAR made seat belts mandatory in 1956, and shoulder harnesses in 1965, after the death of Joe Weatherly.  At Indianapolis, seat belts were not really mandatory until 1961.

 

Bill Utter:

Bill makes mention of the OCFS Banquet being held on January 7, 2012 at Kuhl’s Highland House in Middletown, NY.  Tickets can be ordered through Bob Perran at:  352-503-3847.

 

John Snyder:

John makes mention of Max Zachem and his racing in the Valenti Modified Racing Series and his attempts to get some sponsorship. 

Note:  to be honest, I’ve never heard of that series, but here’s a link to it:

http://www.modifiedracingseries.com/

 

John goes on to say that Brett Hearn had 83 starts in 2011.  That’s his second lowest amount of starts in a season, since he started his current operation.  His lowest:  75 in 2009.

He goes on to say that David Reutimann could surely use a big dollar sponsor in 2012 for a Cup ride.  He makes mention of Darden Restaraunts.  They’re the parent of Red Lobster, Olive Garden, Long Horn Steak House, Capital Grille, Bahama Breeze and Seasons 52 restaurants.  They also have taken over Eddie V’s Prime Seafood and Wildfish Seafood Grille operations.

 

 

In AARN this Week’s issue of November 22nd:

 

Duane Howard returns Bridgeport;
wins Big Block feature.


Stewart's the man -
and NASCAR's champion


Nouse is new driver
of Dietz Motorsports 410


Central New York Raceway Park
moves forward


Matt Sheppard takes top prize
at  DIRTCar banquet


Doing good for the sport:
Ohio's Twin State Fan Club

 

 

 

 

 

Former Oakland Valley Speedway (Dirt Oval) runners:

Last week I missed Davey Franek finishing 10th in the Sprint Car feature at Susquehanna.

Last Saturday at the Bridgeport Speedway, Anthony Perrego was 15th in the Modified feature.  On Sunday he was 20th.  Brittany Tresch was 16th in the TSRS 305 Sprint Car feature.

 

 

 

 

More racin’ stuff:

 

Accord Speedway

 

BANQUET UPDATE: In an effort to be sensitive to the economic environment a decision has been made to change the venue for the 2011 banquet. The 2011 Award Banquet is being held at the Brookside Manor in Middletown NY on March 3, 2012. A buffet dinner with cash bar for $40 per person. It will be open seating-with reservations for tables of 10. The top 10 drivers in each Friday division will be honored as well as Mid Week Madness drivers. As per our rules, drivers must be an Accord Speedway member and must attend the banquet to receive their award. Check the website for reservation form.

 

 

 

 

Racing and television:

Racing on TV - http://www.racefantv.com/USTV.htm

 

Note:  On the website, above, there is now this message:

 

About Race Fan TV

 

George Webster is retiring from Race Fan TV

 

 November 2011

 

 Effective the end of November, 2011, I am retiring from Race Fan TV and I will no longer be providing updates to the TV listing database.

 

Last year I sold the website (racefantv.com), including the name, to Charles Ehredt, who also operates other websites, including the similarly-named RacefansTV. Ehredt has plans to continue the TV listings service here, but these plans are not yet fully developed.

 

I have enjoyed the time I have spent compiling and posting the TV listing data here and I trust that you have appreciated my 'labour of love' efforts

 

 George Webster

 

 

 

 

Some non-racing stuff:

 

About a month ago, or there about, the store where I do most of my shopping - Shop Rite, came out with our being able to get a free Turkey, Turkey Breast, Ham or Lasagna, or other meat items, for Thanksgiving, if we spent $300.00 over a certain amount of time, while using their “card”.  In the past, we've always qualified for free Turkeys, but with just the wife and I at home now, I kind of figured there would be no way that we'd spend enough to qualify.  How wrong I was!  What with today's food prices, I actually hit that $300.00 figure a couple of weeks ago.  Watching the news on Tuesday evening, after dinner, there was a short about how much more it was costing us, this year for all the holiday "fixings".  There was also another short on how many millions are traveling during this Thanksgiving Holiday.  When that came out I said to the wife:  "I thought no one had any money"?  Here's a little on cost for this Thanksgiving:

 

Economy means scaled-back Thanksgiving for many.

 

In part:

"Some are holding potluck dinners instead of springing for the entire feast. Others are staying home rather than flying. And a few are skipping the turkey altogether.

 

On this the fourth Thanksgiving since the economy sank, prices for everything from airline flights to groceries are going up, and some Americans are scaling back. Yet in many households, the occasion is too important to skimp on. Said one mother: "I don't have much to give, but I'll be cooking, and the door will be open."

 

Thanksgiving airfares are up 20 percent this year, and the average price of a gallon of gas has risen almost 20 percent, according to travel tracker AAA. Rail travelers were also affected, with fares on most one-way Amtrak tickets up 2 to 5 percent.

 

Still, about 42.5 million people are expected to travel, the highest number since the start of the recession.

 

But even those who choose to stay home and cook for themselves will probably spend more. A 16-pound turkey and all the trimmings will cost an average of $49.20, a 13 percent jump from last year, or about $5.73 more, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation, which says grocers have raised prices to keep pace with higher-priced commodities."

 

Here's the link to the above, where there's quite a bit more as far as what some are doing:

 

http://news.yahoo.com/economy-means-scaled-back-thanksgiving-many-224134962.html

 

 

 

 

Is this true?:

 

On this past Monday I received an e-mail about signing a petition to get members of Congress off of free health care.  From what I’ve read, most of, if not all of the Internet petitions, are a waste of time and never get sent to where they are supposed to go.  Part of the e-mail had this in it:

 

“In April, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted to cut Medicare and Medicaid. And this month, even Democrats on the so-called Super Committee have offered deep cuts to these vital programs.

Essentially, Republicans in Congress are telling senior citizens and the poor that tax cuts for billionaires and millionaires are more important than providing a health care safety net for our most vulnerable.

But did you know that members of Congress get great taxpayer-funded health care? In fact, they have one of the best health care plans in the world.

It strikes us as the height of hypocrisy to be accepting government-provided, taxpayer-subsidized health insurance while denying seniors, the disabled, and the poor the basic coverage that Medicare and Medicaid provide.

 

If you voted to cut Medicare and Medicaid, you must stop accepting taxpayer-funded health care for yourself and your family.”

 

Note:  Kinda makes sense to me.

 

 

 

 

Video time:

 

I got this one in an e-mail the other day.  Smokey Yunick on Tony “Smoke” Stewart. 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UT2G0iRwxaI&NR=1

 

Note:  Pretty much sums it up, doesn’t he?

 

 

 

 

Interesting e-mails that I get:

 

""Ineptocracy""

 

 I love this word.  Finally, a word to describe our current leadership with accuracy!

 

 Ineptocracy (in-ep-toc’-ra-cy)

 

 ~~ - a system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers

 

 

 

 

Photos:

 

I’m posting a photo a week for a while.  Majority of them will be from “Back in the day”.

 

This week, one of the best photos ever taken of Ted Tappett  (Phil Walters).  Tappett, as I’ve always called him, excelled in Midgets from the late 30’s into the very early 50’s, when he got into stock cars and also excelled in them, too.  After that it was Sports/Racing cars, mostly with Briggs Cunningham – again, he excelled.  He was fortunate to get signed by Ferrari early in 1955, to drive their Sports/Racing cars and also their Formula One Grand Prix cars.  That he was to do right after the 1955 LeMans 24-hour race in June.  The disastrous Pierre Levegh accident during that 24-hour raced caused Tappett to retire from racing – then and there.  What I found somewhat of a surprise was that while I was speaking with his son, some time ago, on the phone, we got on the subject of the Indianapolis 500.  Tappett thought that race was too dangerous.

 

Note:  The photo is not available on Dirt Track Digest, only on New England Tractor - http://newenglandtractor.com/racereport/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Closing with this:

 

Found on Facebook:

I'm inviting all my Facebook family and friends to join me in returning to the traditional greeting of "MERRY CHRISTMAS" instead of the politically correct "Happy Holidays"!! If you agree with me, please re-post this message. or at least say....MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!

So, how about it?  Let’s keep saying “Merry Christmas” instead of “Happy Holidays”.

 

May “Guardian Angels” sit on the shoulders of all of our race drivers and race fans, and guide them safely around the tracks!

Drive safe! 

As usual, you can reach me at:  ygordad@yahoo.com