Chat with Terry Blount
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, ESPN.com auto racing writer Terry Blount will stop by to talk about the busy racing weekends coming up.
Blount's got his eye on the 96th Indy 500 (May 27, noon ET, ABC), as well as this weekend's Dollar General NHRA Summer Nationals (Friday-Sunday coverage on ESPN2, ESPN3.com, WatchESPN.com), Saturday's Sprint Cup All-Star race and the Nationwide Pioneer Hi-Bred 250 (Sunday, 1:30 p.m. ET, ESPN).
Blount covers motorsports for ESPN.com after 25 years as a sports reporter and was recently inducted into the Texas Motorsports Hall of Fame for his contribution as a reporter and columnist.
Send your questions now and join Blount Thursday at 2 p.m. ET!
Terry Blount (2:00 PM)
Hey gang. Here's my column today on the topsy-turvy year in the NHRA where good is bad and bad is good.: http://tinyurl.com/c6vf7sj
Jake (Irving, TX)
Hi Terry, the contrast between Kurt's reaction for cutting a tire and Gordon's for the same at Darlington showed me why Kurt will winning races for years to come and why Gordon is ready for retirement. If a driver doesn't care how he performs what's the point of racing?
Terry Blount (2:02 PM)
I couldn't disagree more Jake. Kurt was out of control and endangered people's lives on pit road. Gordon is a class act and one of the greatest drivers in NASCAR history.
Nate Collett (Vermont)
On a scale of 1-10, how likely is it that Kurt Busch will have a ride with a formidable big team next year?
Terry Blount (2:04 PM)
At this point I think its 50-50. Everyone knows Kurt can drive, but he didn't do himself any favors last weekend by his actions.
Hi Terry, reading the DOD spent $103M on National Guard sponsorship for Dale over the past 3 years. Do you think we taxpayers got good value for our money and does the National Guard deserve to be represented by a race winning driver?
Terry Blount (2:05 PM)
I think the benefits of the sponsorship dollars in how it helps the Guard recruit far outweigh the costs. And being with Junior brings a lot more attention that many winning drivers would bring.
Do you think if Tim Richmond, Alan Kulwicki and Davey Allison were still around that they would still be racing? I am betting that Dale and Jeff might have a few less rings had they lived!
Terry Blount (2:07 PM)
Dale Sr. said Davey was the best driver he ever saw and Davey probably would have claimed one his Dale's titles. In my book, Tghe Blount Report, I listed Davey has the most underrated driver of all time.
Tomorrow at Charlotte, I think Kurt should say he's sorry his friend Stewart and NASCAR thought he was driving too fast on pit road but continue to stand up for his #51 Finch guys and refuse to appologize to Gibson and that crew thug who entered the #51 pit area ranting and raving. Your thoughts?
Terry Blount (2:09 PM)
That would be a terrible decision. Kurt needs to apologize to Newman's crew for almost running over them. But he also needs to apolgize if he wants to continue working toward a better ride in 2013.
Joanne (Ft. Myers)
Do you think part of the reason some people get scared by Kurt's passion for racing is because they have come to expect all drivers to be soft, gentle, kind, sweet, nice and caring like Dale Junior is?
Terry Blount (2:09 PM)
Absolutely not. I have no problem with drivers gettng angry. I have a big problem when their anger endangers others.
Do you think for the remainder of the cup season Kurt should points drive, go for top 20's and bring home a clean car like you suggest in your Monday Rundown story and race in the NW races?
Terry Blount (2:12 PM)
He needs to realize he's on a weak team and not get so upset with things don't go his way. He made a great showing Saturday by racing in the top 10 before the tire went down. He should have realized that's the kind of thing that will get him a top-tier ride next season as long as he doesn't act like a idiot.
Andrew (Dayton Ohio)
I feel for Simona right now, she is stuck with a lawnmower engine and will probably get bumped. I really think she is a talent, I think she is a better driver than whats her name and a real pretty girl also :)
Terry Blount (2:13 PM)
Simona has talent, but she not a better driver than Danica. Not yet, anyway. but I don't know if anyone will get bumped at Indy this year.
Mike (phila) [via mobile]
Do you still see gordon driving 3 years from now? And do you think he is in the early stages of his decline or do you still consider him a title contender every year?
Terry Blount (2:14 PM)
I think it's unlikely Jeff will win another title now, but the Chase increases the chances if he could get hot in the last 10 races like Tony did last year.
Mike(phila) [via mobile]
Hey terry, didnt get a chance to see the race this past weekend, what happen to the 24? And what do you think his chances are at making the chase? Thanks
Terry Blount (2:15 PM)
Gordon had more bad luck with tires issues. The only way he makes the Chase now is to wins races, at least two and probably three, between now at Richmond.
Mike (phila) [via mobile]
At the start of the season rick said he wanted all 4 cars in the chase? Not looking to good, who do you think makes it? I think 88,48,24 make it
Terry Blount (2:16 PM)
I don't think Jeff can get there now.
Hey Terry, thanks for the chat. Do you follow Formula 1 racing at all?
Terry Blount (2:19 PM)
I do, but not as much as I used to because so much of my time now revolves around NASCAR, IndyCar and the NHRA. But I think this is the most competitive F1 season in years. By the way, I've covered almost every major sports event in my career _ Super Bowls, World Series, NBA Fnals, Final Fours, etc., but the one big event still on my bucket list is the Monaco Grand Prix. I want to cover it from George Clooney's yacht.
I found it a little odd that Danica's parents were at the Indy practice rather than Darlington. Do you think they will pressure her into trying to run Indy 500 again?
Terry Blount (2:20 PM)
Danica will run it again in the future, but she thought it was best this year just to concentrate on the move to NASCAR.
29 Floor Above Sea Level (Planet Earth)
Thanks for the excellent coverage of the NHRA, it's better than what can be found on their site :-) Any chance Larry Dixon finds a ride this year or is he going to sit out the season and return for the 2013 Winternationals, possibly with his own team.
Terry Blount (2:22 PM)
I don't see Larry coming back in the middle of the season unless it's at the end of the year with a new team. It's all about sponsorship, but I know Larry won't do it with a second-rate operation. He wants to be competitive.
laura (manhattan beach)
Hi TB! Great NHRA article, interesting season! Agree with assessment on KuBu, but do you think Ryan Newman went a bit too far with his comment on "chemical inbalance"? And bummer KuBu doesn't get coverage of the great things he does for the troops, and I'm not even a big fan of his!
Terry Blount (2:23 PM)
Hi Laura. Thanks. Ryan probably got a little carried away, but I have no problem with guys saying whetever they want to say, as Tony did at Dega. That makes it fun, whether you agree of disagree.
Terry, glad to hear about F1 racing. Who do you see as a slight favorite to win the Constructor or Driver Championship this year?
Terry Blount (2:25 PM)
I stil like Vettel, but what a great battle with Alonso. And I wouldn't count out Hamilton yet either.
On Newman's comment about Kurt not being able to keep a job; didn't Newman get fired by Penske too?
Terry Blount (2:26 PM)
Ryan left to join Tony's team.
Michael (Las Vegas)
Who you got winning the Truck, Nationwide, and All Star Open and Main Event?
Terry Blount (2:27 PM)
Wow, that's a lot of predicting, but I'll play along. Trucks _ Buescher. NW _ Stenhouse (I'll never pick a Cup driver here). Showdown _ Logano. All-Star race _ JJ.
Maybe Kurt needs the same Joe Gibbs coaching influence that worked for Stewart and Rowdy?
Terry Blount (2:28 PM)
There are rumors out there about Kurt joining his bro next year at JGR, but two Busches might be one too many.
corey k (cleveland)
Hey terry, great chat! i have a theory i wanna run by you regarding the #14 since the COT are basically interchangable i wonder if Tony didn't use the same car throughout the whole chase, espically the 1 1/2 tracks like texas, homestead etc and then wrecked that car at texas this year setting his mile and half program back alittle
Terry Blount (2:30 PM)
I'm not sure how many cars he used in the Chase, but the car he wrecked at Texas wasn't very good. We were joking in the media center that he wrecked it on purpose so he could see if the back-up car was better.
Should Rowdy sit his driver, Kurt Busch, down and tell Kurt that he expects Kurt to be more respectful on pit road and on the radio with the KBM guys?
Terry Blount (2:31 PM)
Ha. You mean like a parent saying, do as I say and not as I do?
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Danica is a better driver than Jeff Gordon all because she finished ahead of him in both of her races.
Terry Blount (2:32 PM)
I'm sure she'll happily accept that ridiculous compliment.
Wes (Las Vegas)
You say Danica will run the Indy 500 again, but I don't see it unless Nascar puts the 600 on Saturday night. I just can't see her wanting to run 1,100 miles in one day.
Terry Blount (2:34 PM)
She could say she's the only woman to do it. If the money is there and the times work, I think she would try it once. Personally, I wish they would run one of these races on Monday so more drivers would be tempted to try it.
Boss Hogg (Hazzard County)
They change the rules of the all-star race every year it seems. Any big changes what we should expect to see this weekend?
Terry Blount (2:35 PM)
The change that matters is the one that will affect the points races, which is raising the side panels to decrease downforce. It will make the cars harder to drive, but could result in more passing.
Since Dale and Stewart are fan favorites and Danica drives for them shouldn't all those NASCAR fans support her? Seems like all those older NASCAR fans are the most vocal Danica haters?
Terry Blount (2:38 PM)
Some fans hate Danica because they feel like she hasn't paid her dues and only has a qualifty ride because she's pretty and well known. The truth is Danica has worked hard to get where she is in racing. And far more peple want to see her race that want to criticize her. Love her or hate her, she moves the needle.
Keith H (Seattle)
I'm not a fan of the Nationwide cars running at Indy. What are your thoughts on the matter?
Terry Blount (2:38 PM)
It's sad to see them leave the short track, but it's all about money and sanctioning fees.
GUESS WHO??? Biffle. Can the Biffler regain the top spot?? Or should we just wish him "Good luck" and see how it plays out??
Terry Blount (2:40 PM)
He's still in the top spot, 2 points over Matt.
Brooks Taylor (Richmond)
Do you think the All-Star race rotate from track, like in MLB, giving fans all over a chance to go?
Terry Blount (2:41 PM)
Absolutely. This has been a soap-box issue with me for years. But the teams don't want to do it because they get an extra week at home having it at Charlotte.
Thanks for the explaination Terry, but how have the Dillon's paid their dues or for that matter, Dale Jr. , Kyle Petty, Steve Wallace who all got the red carpet treatment?
Terry Blount (2:43 PM)
A fair point, although all those guys with family ties also had to work their way up. And the Dillons brother are the real deal. It helps being Richard's grandsons, but both of them will be quality driver in Cup, and they're both really outstanding young men.
Brooks Taylor (Richmond)
How can NASCAR fix the problem of "Buschwhackers" coming down with nothing to lose and wrecking Championship contenders, like Logano did Friday night to Sadler?
Terry Blount (2:44 PM)
They can't, or they won't. NASCAR refuses to limit Cup participation in NW. Joey didn't wreck Sadler on purpose, but he should have been more considerate of the guy who is running for the title.
Why is Indy car giving the cars more boost for 50-60 HP for qualifying only and not for the race?
Terry Blount (2:46 PM)
Because they don't want the speeds to look too slow in qualifying compared to recent years. Once the race starts, less horsepower usually means closer racing.
Keith H (Seattle)
You can put me in the column for having the All Star race at Iowa one year. That kills two birds with one stone.
Terry Blount (2:47 PM)
Exactly. Iowa could have a Cup race without getting a Cup date. Or Vegas could get a seocnd Cup event without getting another points race. Charlotte has two race weekends. It doesn't need three.
Since Mr. H fired Rowdy to make a spot for Junebug, Rowdy has won 20 cup races and Dale but 1. Is that a sore subject with HMS?
Terry Blount (2:48 PM)
No, because Rick has made way more money off sponsorship with Jr than he would have with Kyle.
So at HMS, making money is what it's about and not winning races? I thought the point of racing was to win races.
Terry Blount (2:50 PM)
You have to do both to be successful, and clearly Rick is winning plenty, 200 Cup races last time I checked.
Juan Pablo Montoya (Bogota, Colombia)
Do you think I will ever win on an oval?
Terry Blount (2:51 PM)
Yes I do fake JPM. But it's going to take better equipment than what you're getting right now at EGR.
Eric (Tampa, FL)
I thought it was pretty funny that Danica said after the Southern 500 she felt silly that the only two times she got a stripe in the race Jeff Gordon was behind her. She shouldn't feel bad, 4 time got a stripe too.
Terry Blount (2:52 PM)
Everyone takes a turn getting a Darlington stripe.
Terry Blount (2:54 PM)
He's won at Michigan, Chicago, Bristol and Dover.
Bart (East Bay)
If Dodge bails on NASCAR as appears likely will both Roush-Yates and Penske build Ford engines and how will Jack feel about sharing all that hard earned technology with Penske?
Terry Blount (2:56 PM)
A Penske/Roush engine alignment is a long way from a done deal. And I still believe Dodge will have a team next year. As I've said, if I'm Ganassi, I find a way to make that happen.
Terry Blount (2:59 PM)
I've got to go a couple of minutes early today folks. Fun chat today. I hope everyone enjoys the All-Star race. It's always fun to watch an event where winning is the only thing that matters. Have a great wekeend. Peace.