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July 3, 2:33 PM ET
Chat with David Newton

David Newton
  (1:56 PM)

Wow! Get on here early and already there are 42 questions. Must be "Smoke" in the air, and it's not coming from California wild fires. Fire away.

Tank

How long does take Stweart to become good in new car? I thnks he stinks for two years and never wins chmpishiop again! Sad...he was always fun...but I bets he becomes also run. What does you think?

David Newton
  (1:58 PM)

I woulidn't be so sure he'll struggle. He'll have Hendrick Motorsports engines and surely will surround himself with good people. Everything is in place for him to do well right out of the gate just as Toyota did with Gibbs. OK, not quite like with Gibbs, which was strong before Toyota. But just the same I wouldn't be surprised to see him do well in the first year.

Roger, Kansas City, MO.

Just heard that Greg Zipadeli is staying with JGR. I thought he and Tony and the same length contracts with JGR?

David Newton
  (1:59 PM)

No, Zippy signed a long-term deal last year. Maybe the Gibbs had an inkling Tony might be hard to re-sign.

Keith (Troy, AL)

Any indication of a number Stewart may use?

David Newton
  (1:59 PM)

Some believe he'll take No. 14 after his favorite driver, A.J. Foyt. Stay tuned.

Kyle (Centerville, IA)

Do you believe that DEI is actually not for sale, ro looking for an investor? And why would a driver like Martin Truex Jr. even consider re-signing. With Joe Gibbs opening another team and RCR considering (or have they decided yet?).

David Newton
  (2:01 PM)

If the right offer came along I wouldn't be surprised to see DEI sold. How do you think Junior would feel about that. As for Truex Jr., he has a chance to be the center piece at DEI, which still is a decent organization. He wouldn't have that luxury at JGR or RCR.

Dan (Charlotte)

Any new word on where Truex may go? And do you think Junior will try and buy into DEI now that Teresa may sell.

David Newton
  (2:01 PM)

I believe Truex stays at DEI. And if Teresa wouldn't sell to Junior last year I doubt she would this year.

justin (sac-town)

will smoke lose motivation for the rest of this year?

David Newton
  (2:02 PM)

I was thinking that as I watched him step out of the car last weekend. I doubt he woudl have done that had he been committed to the team long-term.

Rod (Charlotte, NC)

Will Stewart make the 2009 Chase?

David Newton
  (2:03 PM)

No matter what the folks at JGR say, they have to put more focus on Hamlin and Busch now. Stewart is plenty good to make the Chase, but I'm betting he doesn't make it. Just a hunch.

Roger, Kansas City, MO.

Who's on the short list for crew chief(s)?

David Newton
  (2:04 PM)

Haven't heard much on that. Perhaps his Naitonwide crew chief. We'll see.

Johnny (NYC, NY)

How well do you think Martin will do with HMS...not asking for an exact place, but do you think he's got a shot at a Championship, top 5, the Chase? I bet he makes the Chase, but that he never threatens for the title...also doubt he wins a race (though I'd love to see it).

David Newton
  (2:05 PM)

I see him making the Chase, but as for winning the title I'm betting against it. The new car is a beast to handle and a 36-race schedule plus the All-Star race and Bud Shootout I believe will take a toll on a 50-year-old man no matter how good his abs look.

Branden (Pittsburgh,PA)

Do you think Ganassi will be out of NASCAR by next year? Obviously his teams have struggled for awhile now.

David Newton
  (2:05 PM)

No, I believe Ganassi is committed to succeeding here.

Kyle (Centerville, IA)

Back on DEI before I go to Stewart Haas Racing, would they sell to Dale Jr. Would this be an opportunity that Dale Jr could look at to buy DEI and move his Nationwide team to Cup. Even though it seems he is content with JRM staying in the Nationwide level for a little longer.

David Newton
  (2:06 PM)

Only if he buys it under an assumed name. He's gone for a reason. Teresa.

Jason (Seattle)

Any more word on Smoke's health situation?

David Newton
  (2:07 PM)

He was healthy enough to address the team today. So I guess he's fine. Maybe the stress of making these decisions will pep him up.

Kyle (Centerville, IA)

Do you think it would be too early to bring sliced bread up to cup in the 20? Is there another driver they could use?

David Newton
  (2:07 PM)

Joey Logano will drive the 20. JGR made a run at Carl Edwards and failed. They seem content Logano is ready.

Rick (Deland)

Who do you think gets the fourth ride at RCR next year?

David Newton
  (2:08 PM)

If it's not Mears, which I believe might go to Penske, then likely a young driver with a lot of potential. Don't ask who.

Kyle (Centerville, IA)

Someone brought up Ganassi above. Do you think the fact that he owns in IndyCar as well affects his Cup team's performance?

David Newton
  (2:09 PM)

It shouldn't. You'd think if he can be successful in one series he can be successful in another. But if you look at it, Penske hasn't done so well lately either.

Brian (FL)

Any word on a possible sponsor for ragan and the 6 next year?

David Newton
  (2:09 PM)

Nothing solid yet.

Liz (scranton Pa)

Hearing MWR and Ganassi merger any truth to this?

David Newton
  (2:10 PM)

Been hearing Ganassi might merge with a team, but not that one.

hank ( alabama)

Can Logano turn into another Casey Atwood?

David Newton
  (2:10 PM)

Logano could turn into a young Kyle Busch without an attitude.

Big Mama (Yazoo)

This week the Biffster will win. mark it down

David Newton
  (2:11 PM)

Marked. But I believe Kyle will win his third straight and seventh of the year.

Brad, KS

Other than testing, are there any major rules changes, either to the car or to qualifying, etc...that are in discussions for next year?

David Newton
  (2:11 PM)

Not yet. NASCAR wants to get through an entire season before making any drastic changes.

Shannon(Omaha)

Any traction to the rumor that Reutimann will be taking over the #45?

David Newton
  (2:12 PM)

I'm told he's under contract at MWR for next season.

lynn, va

will Reed be a good fit for a tony teammate

David Newton
  (2:12 PM)

No.

Brad, KS

What happened to the hard line JD Gibbs had drawn by saying Stewart would be there next year to honor his contract?

David Newton
  (2:13 PM)

A large check from Chevy likely softened it. Plus, why keep somebody around that doesn't want to be there? Not good for chemistry.

Nick(Alabama)

I read on Jayski that there is a rumor of david Rueitemann heading to Petty to drive the 45 next season. If so How does Micheal's team fare? Because rumors has ups leaving at the end of the season. That Leaves them looking for a driver and sponsorship for atleast to cars for next year.

David Newton
  (2:13 PM)

If all that happens it wouldn't be good for MWR. But one of his senior guys told me Reutimann is locked down for 2009.

jeff ( Harrisburg PA)

Who will be the next full timer to fold, Robby Gordon, Yates?? Maybe Penske scale back to a two car op???

carolhood

do you think nascar will eventhe playing fied with the horsepower this year. or give jgr the advantage the rest of the year

David Newton
  (2:15 PM)

The horsepower advantage is in the Nationwide Series. It's not so great in Cup.

beck, TN

is this just me or did we know about Tony leaving earlier this year

David Newton
  (2:16 PM)

We pretty much knew it for a while now. He just had to finalize a lot of legal details.

Tex (Texas)

Any reasons told as to why Navy left JRM's #88?

David Newton
  (2:17 PM)

To be honest, haven't looked into it so much since I focus mostly on Cup. My guess is they got a better offer.

Matt (Indianapolis, IN)

So how long before Tony jumps in an IndyCar again?

David Newton
  (2:17 PM)

I believe he'll have his hands full as an owner/driver in Cup.

Michael (Rochester NY)

I think Ganassi shutting down the #40 team should send of the warning sirens to NASCAR. My prediction is that by mid '09/10 your going to see less then 40 cars starting in the Cup races. If your not w/ JGR, HMS, RCR, or Rousch, your gasping for air. And now, with unlimited testing being brought up, it's gonna make the lesser teams struggle dollar wise even more. Thoughts?

David Newton
  (2:18 PM)

It should send a warning sign. As for your prediction of 40 teams, my guess is there'll still be at least 43 cars. Teams that struggle to make the field will show up if they know they'll be in just to collect a paycheck.

Lynda, Va

is zippy going to follow tony

David Newton
  (2:19 PM)

Nope. He' s staying. Under long-term contract.

KYLE(ANAHEIM CALIFORNIA)

DO U THINK HMS IS GOING TO BE STRONGER THEN JGR NEXT YEAR ONCE TONY LEAVES?

David Newton
  (2:19 PM)

Hard to say. Kyle and Denny are awfully good. And Joe Logano has a chance to be. Experience is the biggest advantage for HMS.

Robert (Huntsville, Al)

I've lost a lot of respect for Stewart. It really seems he has been a malcontent all year because the other two drivers have been getting more press than him. We all know Tony loves his press time as much as he says he hates the media...

David Newton
  (2:20 PM)

LOL. You might be right on him loving his press time.

Roger, Kansas City, MO.

Any thoughts on Tony's additional driver? Ryan Newman's name keeps being mentioned. Anyone else you hearing in your circles?

David Newton
  (2:21 PM)

I'm told Newman is all but a done deal.

Johnny (NYC, NY)

Am I the only one annoyed when cars way off the lead lap get into accidents in the final laps? If I had my way, cars off the lead lap that cause yellow flags in the last 10 laps should be black flagged and cars more than 20 laps off of the leap should not be allowed to return to the track. Thoughts?

David Newton
  (2:22 PM)

Interesting idea. Don't believe it would fly, but interesting. And I thought fans liked the wrecks.

deb ( Norman OK)

Will Tony leaving Gibbs have a negative impact on that organization?

David Newton
  (2:23 PM)

No. Might even has a positive impact. There was a lot of controversy around him during the last 10 years in case you have forgotten.

Austin (Lou, KY)

Any news on whether or not Kentucky Speedway will get a cup date?

David Newton
  (2:24 PM)

Nothing more than Bruton is considering taking a race from one of his tracks, which I believe would have to be Atlanta.

John (little rock)

Does Jr still own 49 percent of DEI Why is NAVY leaving JR MotorSports

David Newton
  (2:25 PM)

He never owned any of DEI. Nothing on Navy for you.

Jamie (Iowa City, IA)

If Tony's number is 14, any idea on what Newman's would be?

David Newton
  (2:25 PM)

70, 66, haven't a clue.

KYLE(ANAHEIM CALIFORNIA)

DOES KYLE BUSCH HAVE A CHANCE OF WINNING THE CHAMPIONSHIP?

David Newton
  (2:25 PM)

Think about what you just asked. The guy with six wins definitely has a shot.

Brad: Louisville KY

What's the real reason in your opinion why Tony is leaving?

David Newton
  (2:26 PM)

He wants to be an owner down the line, so why not start preparing for it now as a driver?

brendon ( south carolina)

Could the Navy move up to cup maybe with Tony/Ryan as a co-sponsor?

David Newton
  (2:27 PM)

Or maybe RCR. They do have a big sponsor announcement tomorrow. But I haven't a clue as to what it is about.

Steve (Elgin,SC)

What's the chances Kyle likes his time in the booth and stops driving?

David Newton
  (2:28 PM)

We should all be so lucky. As for the chance, he insists he wants to drive another year or so to keep his name in the public with his camp.

Johnny (NYC, NY)

JGR might have more potential than HMS for next year, but come-on...with the exception of Busch its just lots of potential. hamlin could be great...but he's only won three races in 2 1/2 years. And Logano...he's never entered a Cup race. busch might be the best on either team, but after him (if we were to make the debatable determination that he's the best), HMS has the next four best drivers...in terms of which team is better...I think its hard to say that on paper Busch, Hamlin and Logano would match-up.

David Newton
  (2:30 PM)

You asked and I gave myu opinion. We'll find out together.

St. Louis, MO

I think Zippy not going with Tony will make the transition for tony much more difficult. Zippy's all he's known in his cup ride. What do you think?

David Newton
  (2:31 PM)

Zippy would have helped, but Tony is a big boy. He'll find somebody else that can put up with him.

Wallie (Detroit, MI)

Do you think Jr is going to win this weekend and in two weeks?

David Newton
  (2:32 PM)

No and no. But he'll run dang well.

Barry MacCockner

won't tony and ryan just be too smart-ass to get along?

David Newton
  (2:32 PM)

They actually have a good relationship off the track. Could be a good fit.

Zack (Sherveport, La)

What number will Tony use?

David Newton
  (2:32 PM)

Said this earlier, but 14 has been rumored.

Steve (East Hanover, NJ)

any word what will happen to Booty Barker?

David Newton
  (2:33 PM)

Right now he's enjoying a six-week vacation from NASCAR for bending the rules. Whether Tony will keep him next year I can't say.

Ronald (Covington, LA)

Do you think Matt Borland will go back with Newman at CNC Stewart?

David Newton
  (2:34 PM)

He'll likely stay in his present job at Haas as director of competition. But he's one of many reasons Newman will leave Penske for Stewart Haas.

Anthony (dayton, Oh)

I thought i had read there was a clause in zippy's contract that he could leave if tony did.

David Newton
  (2:34 PM)

There is. He doesn't want to leave. That is why he was so bothered when I talked to him a few weeks ago. He didn't ask for this split.

John, Daytona Beach, FL

Logano in the 20 next year is a done deal, trust me.

David Newton
  (2:35 PM)

I do.

Jason (SLC)

How long is Dale Jr's contract for? And why would Teresa care who bought DEI unless she is going to be sticking around racing...

David Newton
  (2:35 PM)

I believe he signed a five-year deal. And I don't think she would care as long as his name wasn't Dale Jr.

Newty Fruity (Kernersville, NC)

Give me 3 reasons why I should stay into Nascar for the next 3 years???

David Newton
  (2:36 PM)

Drama. Drama. And more drama.

David (NV)

Any chance Dave Rogers goes with Smoke to Haas due to their somewhat long standing relationship on the #20 team as well as Nationwide? I'd really like to see him paired with Logano and then Zippy take on a new driver for a 4th team, someone like Truex. Who will be available next year for a possible 4th cup team in terms of a driver? Hard to imagine anyone as good as what was available this season.

David Newton
  (2:36 PM)

Rogers would be a good pick. I just don't know his contract situation at Gibbs. And I believe Tony has an agreement that he won't take people with him.

Luke, Indy

If Stewart doesn't make the Chase, could you see JGR releasing him early so they could put Logano in the 20 car before the end of the season.

David Newton
  (2:37 PM)

I would if I were them. Makesa no sense to keep a lame duck driver around.

Scott, Virginia

Given the rumors that Chevy bought out Tony's contract, does this signal Chevy's willingness to support Stewart-Haas financially at the same level as Hendrick?

David Newton
  (2:37 PM)

Not sure GM has that much money.

David (Charlotte)

Is NASCAR starting to have sponsor trouble and sponsors not being able to justify monies (especially in a down ecconomy) because fans are less loyal these days? And because teams and drivers flip around so much that there isn't as much brand recognition?

David Newton
  (2:38 PM)

Not for those reasons. Times are just tough in general for sponsors to justify the money it takes to back a team.

Stewart (Indiana)

With all this drama "in the scenes" do you think there will be a "behind the scenes" reality show? I think Nascar could really benefit from that

David Newton
  (2:40 PM)

Would be a good one. Got some money to put up and help create the show?

Casey ( new jersey)

Isn't Indy cars more interesting with so many different winners as opposed to Nascar with one punk winning all the time?

David Newton
  (2:41 PM)

Not in my humble opinion.

ed ( toronto, canada)

One thing that bugs me is hearing how Sprint Cup owners don't make any money. This is ridiculous. Obviously Hendrick, Penske, Roush, DEI RCR etc.. make a few bucks. Why does this keep being said in the media?

David Newton
  (2:42 PM)

Hendrick makes most of his money from dealerships. Most of Penske's money comes from outside of racing. Roush needed a financial partner to continue at the level he wanted. So did RCR, and DEI is struggling. Need more?

Tom (Villa Rica, GA)

I saw were you addressed Zippy's long term contract before, but I was under the impression that he had an out clause if Tony left. Truth or rumor?

David Newton
  (2:42 PM)

He does, but he's not leaving for the third or fourth time.

Cory ( Atlanta)

Any idea on what sponsors Stewart/Haas will have for next year?

David Newton
  (2:43 PM)

Stewart will have Office Depot and likely Old Spice. Hearing Newman either Burger King or Jack Daniels, although Jack has another year left on its deal at RCR with Clint Bowyer.

Josh (seattle, WA)

Where will Jaime McMUurray land next season, is he the odd man out at Roush?

David Newton
  (2:43 PM)

I believe he'll be at Roush through next season, then perhaps move to Yates Racing.

jon tampa

who will scott riggs drive for in 2009 are there any indications?

David Newton
  (2:44 PM)

Nothing on Scott. It doesn't look good for him or Sauter.

Derek, Ohio

How will Allmendinger fare now that he has Jimmy Elledge on board?

David Newton
  (2:45 PM)

Can't predict that, but have to believe Elledge will help.

Mike (Atlanta)

How much would you love to see Sadler driving for Tony? I know Elliott is locked up with GEM, but I think that would be entertaining

David Newton
  (2:46 PM)

Sick sense of humor you have. Think Tony said he needed to stay as far away from Elliott on the track.

Matt (Phoenix)

Could Casey Mears be a good fit with Tony as a teamate (if Ryan doesn't work).... he knows Hendrick Equipment & has had 4 crew cheifs in 4 years.. maybe a 2 or 3 year contract with 1 team and 1 crew cheif could make him live up to his potential. Casey is a good guy, good driver, great for sponsors, I think he would fit well with Tony

David Newton
  (2:47 PM)

No, Tony won't take Casey. I like Casey, but he hasn't done well at Ganassi or HMS. So why would Tony think he could do well for him?

Seth (Indiana)

If the #66 gets into the top 35 and the #70 doesn't, I assume Tony will step in the the #70 (or #14) and give the #66 to Newman since Smoke has the Champion's Provisional?

David Newton
  (2:48 PM)

That would be a good assumption.

Amy ny

Is Hornish here to stay or is he considering returning to Indy cars?

David Newton
  (2:49 PM)

He appears here to stay. Another year and he should be compeittive.

jon tampa

tony is a joke he is on the decline look at his stats year by year they are like the London Bridge! they are falling down!

David Newton
  (2:49 PM)

He's still a two-time champion and a threat to win every week at the track.

Matt (Alabama)

With Toyota's success, who will be the next automaker to enter NASCAR?

David Newton
  (2:50 PM)

Perhaps Honda?

Brenin (Delaware, OH)

Why no mention of Truex to "Stewart/Haas"?

David Newton
  (2:50 PM)

Because I believe he'll be back at DEI, but I've been wrong before.

Bryan (Chicago, IL)

How can you say there is drama in the series? There seems to be less passing with the new car and fewer consequences for slamming the car into the wall (Kyle Busch at Darlington). The only drama is who is going where next year and sponsor deals.

David Newton
  (2:51 PM)

That is part of the drama. As for passing, there's been more than ever according to NASCAR stats. I don't see much difference in the racing this year than others.

Mike (Exton, PA)

David, for your ESPN picture, could you get a new one without the tuxedo?

David Newton
  (2:52 PM)

Will work on that. Thanks.

Christen

Will RCR give Jack Daniels the 07 for its new team? And also what woult RCR new number for the UPS car be?

David Newton
  (2:52 PM)

I don't think there'll be a number change. The 3, in case your are wondering, is not coming back.

Savannah (Raleigh)

Do you think Jeff Gordon gets a win this year?

David Newton
  (2:54 PM)

I believe he'll get more than one win.

Mark (Mount Airy, MD)

Hey David, who are your favorites for the Cup race in Chicagoland this weekend???? Will running at night make for better racing??????

David Newton
  (2:54 PM)

The usual suspects. Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson, Tony Stewart, Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards. As for better racing, we'll have to wait and see.

Brenin (Delaware, OH)

What happened last year (or twoyrs ago) when it seemed like you, Marty Smith - and everyone and their brother left NASCAR.COM? I never read that rag anymore..

David Newton
  (2:55 PM)

Marty and I did leave, but it's still a good publication.

Kaleb(Fargo)

Christen just to clarify UPS will the on the 07 and General Mills will be on the new car which is the 33

David Newton
  (2:56 PM)

General Mills for sure. UPS has been rumored for the 07, but Jack Daniels has another year left on its deal with RCR.

James (Louisville, KY)

In your opinion, what are the biggest issues keeping Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson from getting wins this year like in years past? Is it just as simple as the new car?

David Newton
  (2:58 PM)

Kyle Busch has something to do with it. He's taking away wins that went to them a year ago. They've also struggled with the new car, but not enough that they won't be in the middle of the fight before the season is over.

David Newton
  (2:58 PM)

Well, guys. Have to run. Enjoy the race this weekend and all the drama surrounding Stewart.