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January 28, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Terry Blount

Ben (Wisconsin)

Terry, what do you think about this scenario: NASCAR puts Sonoma in the Chase, and uses its date in the early summer to bring a Cup race to Road America. With Nationwide going there this year and people complaining about the Chase and how it seems catered to Jimmie, do you think it could happen in a few years?

Terry Blount
  (2:01 PM)

Anything is possible, but I don't see NASCAR adding a third road race to the Cup series. However, I would like to see them move Sonoma to a Chase race. Every type of track should be included in the Chase.

Terry Blount
  (2:03 PM)

And it's good to be back in chat mode. Lots going on today, including Tony George shutting down his Vision Racing tam in the IRL. And Johnson wrecked today in Rolex 24 practice. He's sore, but OK.

Terry Blount
  (2:09 PM)

Sorry guys. had a call I had to take there, but I'll go long t make up for it.

Taylor (TX)

Yesterday David Newton said that Kasey Kahne has a couple more options than Kevin Harvick for the 2011 season (aside from Stewart Haas), notably some that would surprise us. Can you elaborate on possible rides for Kahne in 2011 that would surprise us?

Terry Blount
  (2:11 PM)

Kasey will have plenty of options, but some of those will come up later this year we changes come at teams we don't expect. For now, certainly a fourth car at Gibbs looks good. And RCR wants to go back to a fourth car if they have the funding, which Budweiser could provide.

James (NJ)

TB - did you watch the special on Jimmie Johnson on HBO the otehr night? I thought it was pretty cool. You?

Terry Blount
  (2:12 PM)

As reality shows go, I think it's a good one any NASCAR fan would enjoy watching.

Tracy (CT)

Will we see the 2008 or the 2009 David Ragan this year?

Terry Blount
  (2:13 PM)

Probably somewhere in between. Not as good as 2008 but not as bad as 2009.

Tracy (CT)

Who is your pick to win it all this year?

Terry Blount
  (2:15 PM)

My pick is Denny Hamlin, but I have some concerns about his ACL tear. I know doctors have said it won't affect his driving, but I'm not so sure.

Leo (CT)

Who do you think will have the best finish of all the NASCAR drivers at the Rolex this weekend?

Terry Blount
  (2:16 PM)

I probably would have said Jimmie Johnson until he wrecked the car today morning in practice.

A.J. (Delafield WI)

TB who has a better year in 2010- Dale Jr or Kevin Harvick?

Terry Blount
  (2:17 PM)

I'll go with Jr. Kevin will be improved, but lame duck status rarely goes well for a driver.

Taylor (TX)

Speaking of a fourth JGR car, is that why we've seen different drivers in the 02 for the past couple seasons in an effort to go to a four car operation?

Terry Blount
  (2:18 PM)

It's part of it. Organizations will try out pit crews to see who they want if they add a car.

Branden (Pittsburgh, PA)

How do you think the EGR cars of Montoya and MacMurray will fare this year?

Terry Blount
  (2:19 PM)

I'm loking for big things from JPM. I think he can contend for the title. I also expect Jamie to improve dramatically and finish in the top 20 in the standings.

Scott (Manchester, NH)

When Dale Jr does about as good this year as last year, will he be out at HMS or in his case is it all about the merchandise sales?

Terry Blount
  (2:20 PM)

He'll be better and he isn't going anywhere.

Taylor (TX)

How much of a different will the spoiler on the COT have, as opposed to the hurting rear wing?

Terry Blount
  (2:22 PM)

The goal is to give the car more balance of downforce between the front and the back. But don't expect any dramatic improvements. The old spoiler had a big problem with aero push.

Keith (Boston)

Do you think both Newman and Stewart will make the Chase again this year?

Terry Blount
  (2:22 PM)

Yes, but I don't expect either of them to win the Chase.

Jamerson (Georgia)

You mentioned Marcos Ambrose as a dark horse to make the Chase. Any others you have your eye on, Terry? Logano? Keselowski?

Terry Blount
  (2:24 PM)

I think Truex could surprise some people in the No. 56 car at MWR.

Tyler (Durham, NC)

Seeing as BAM Racing has only put Gilliland on for the Daytona 500. Who do you see in that car for the remainder of the season? Scott Riggs?

Terry Blount
  (2:25 PM)

I don't think they know, but whoever it is, that team is going to struggle.

JAMMER (UTAH)

Terry, February 14th can't come fast enough. Why is it going so slow? GO LOWES 48!!! DRIVE FOR 5!!!

Terry Blount
  (2:26 PM)

Actually, is going pretty fast to me. I leave for Daytona on Wednesday.

becka (virgina)

were will the rear wings go after they take them off

Terry Blount
  (2:28 PM)

I'm collecting them for a museum called "Wings and Things." Just kidding. I have no idea. Probably stored away with open-faced helmets.

Jimbo (Riverside Ca)

Mr Blount, Happy New Year,hope you had a great holiday.Do you think Stewart/Hass will field a 3rd car this year?(mid year)

Terry Blount
  (2:29 PM)

No. They might have a one-off here or there, but no full-time third car until 2011. But they are supplying a pit crew for Bobby Labonte's car.

Taylor (TX)

Well, we know that the spoilers have a problem with aero push because that's all Rusty Wallace talks about with the Nationwide cars.What are your thoughts on Marcos Ambrose this year? Top 15 in points?

Terry Blount
  (2:30 PM)

I made Marcos my wildcard pick to slip in the Chase. It's still a longshot, but I like the guy and hope he makes it.

David Newton (NASCAR R)

Hey, Terry. Here at NASCAR pit road school. Want to know what I learned so far? NASCAR doesn't flip a coin to decide how they decide pit road penalties.

Terry Blount
  (2:32 PM)

Shocking. But I want to see you change a tire while you're there.

Frank (Dallas)

Who would you take this upcoming year... Jimmy Johnson or the field to win the chase?

Terry Blount
  (2:33 PM)

I'll take the field, but I don't think you can get that bet in Vegas.

Larry (MI)

TB, Have you had a chance to see the exchange of words from Felix Sabates and MIS president Roger Curtis? Felix had some pretty harsh words about the state of Michigan and the city of Detroit.

Terry Blount
  (2:34 PM)

You have to take what Felix says with a grain of salt. Felix says a lot of controversial things, but it sure makes him fun to write about.

David Newton (NASCAR R)

We have now reached the Dale Jr. Rule portion of NASCAR school. No. 1, Dale Jr. can only miss his pit box twice in one race. Do you know what happens if he misses it three times?

Terry Blount
  (2:35 PM)

I'll say they flip a coin.

dz (phx, az)

hey terry. why did the #55 perform with mediocracy in the previous years? does mwr have a great organization to have the #00 and the #47 running up front?

Terry Blount
  (2:38 PM)

MWR is vastly improved, but I don't know I would say they are ready to run up front every week. Let's just say the 56 team with Truex and Pat Tryson will be much better than the 55 was with Mikey. But I give Waltrip a ton of credit for putting together a quality operation with top flight people.

David Newton (NASCAR R)

Wrong. He gets a lap back and moves to the front of the field. But he apparently isn't allowed to pass 20 cars on a restart before reaching the start line as he did last year. Ten, maybe. But never 20.

Terry Blount
  (2:40 PM)

Newt, you are not endearing yourself to the Junior Nation.

Johnny (Michigan)

Hey, Terry. Really looking forward to rooting for my home-state boy Brad Keselowski on to victory this year! I have to ask, though... what's with Roger Penske hiring Jay Guy as the #12 crew chief? Is Guy really that good?

Terry Blount
  (2:42 PM)

I know the Penske folks are very high on him. Time will tell. Jay needs to keep Brad under control and not allow him to overdrive the car.

Aj (Indy )

Why is Denny Hamlin the favorite for the title this year ? That makes no sense...I would put Mark Martin - Jeff Gordon - Kurt Busch - Tony Stewart - Kyle Busch ahead of him

Terry Blount
  (2:44 PM)

I'm not sure he is the favorite. The overall media vote will come out next week. And our ESPN team vote will be revealed soon. But Hamlin gets a lot of credit for he way he finished last season.

David Newton (NASCAR R)

They told me I was too nice during my chat yesterday. One actually asked if I took nice pills during Christmas. I am just trying to be balanced. Aren't reporters supposed to be balanced? And I hope they understand my tongue is implanted deeply into cheek.

Terry Blount
  (2:46 PM)

I'm sure they do. And I agree with the chatters. You're way too nice these days. You're wife is a bad influence on you. Her niceness is rubbing off.

Jimbo (Riverside Ca)

Hey Terry I asked David this question yesterday he liked where it was going.What do you think if LA turned the LA Collossium into like a bristol and we got rid of Fontana?

Terry Blount
  (2:48 PM)

Now that would be cool. They'd pack that old dump. But seriously, even though it doesn't look like it. Bristol is way bigger than any football stadium.

Tracy (CT)

Carl was the fav during last years pre season and look where he finished. So I can't say I take much stock in the so called pre season favs.

Terry Blount
  (2:49 PM)

I don't blame you. The predicting game rarely cokes out right.

Gene (Cincinnati,Ohio)

Should I go to the Daytona 500 or the spring Bristol race?

Terry Blount
  (2:51 PM)

Good question. Bristol is a hoot to watch, but I'd go with the D500. It could get wild this year with the loosening of the rules on bump drafting and the bgger plates.

Jake.T (Atlanta,Ga)

How many Races do you expect JR to win this year

Terry Blount
  (2:52 PM)

I say two. One plate race and one Richmond race.

Trevor (Tampa Bay)

TB, are all races starting at 1:00 this year? If so, what impact do you think this will have on ratings posi/neg?

Terry Blount
  (2:54 PM)

Most races will start at 1 pm ET (excpet for Saturday night races). The races out West will start at 3 pm ET. I think this is a great move so fans know when to tune in.

Matt (Chicago)

I know that Gibbs Racing would not accept Budweiser as a sponsor with Kahne, but do you have any insight into the reasoning behind the decision?

Terry Blount
  (2:55 PM)

Joe Gibbs and his family are very devout Christians.

Jake.T (Atlanta,Ga)

Do you like the Daytona 500 finishing in the day or under the lights

Terry Blount
  (2:57 PM)

I know it's cool to finish races under the lights, but I'm all for starting races as early as possible, unless it's a Saturday night event.

lynn (flordia)

will reed sorenson do better now that he is in the nationwide full time

Terry Blount
  (2:58 PM)

Could he be worse? Yes, I think Reed will have some success in the NW races.

jimmie johnson (4-peat) (el cajon)

i'm taking over the world. terry...watch out!

Terry Blount
  (2:59 PM)

I believe that already has happened, fake Jimmie.

Jimbo (Riverside Ca)

Whens RPM 2 Nite returning?

Terry Blount
  (3:00 PM)

I assume you mean NASCAR Now. It returns Monday.

Greg (NYC)

TB, what do you think are the chances the Natonwide COT becomes the Cup COT? If the Nationwide COT is successful, Nascar should have them in the Cup series. They look so much better than the current Cup cars and actually look like stock cars.

Terry Blount
  (3:02 PM)

I agree, the Mustang and the Challenger look cool. On the media tour last week, I was amazed to see how much the Challenger front end is shaped like the production car. If this works, we could see Cup go to more distinctive grills in a couple of year.

Jake (North Carolina)

Great article today about Marcos Ambrose.

Terry Blount
  (3:03 PM)

Thanks Jake. I always say it's easy to write about good people, and Marcos is a first-rate bloke.

A.J. (Delafield WI)

TB- Can RCR be an elite team like Hendrick?

Terry Blount
  (3:04 PM)

It can, but I don't see that happening this year.

Nate (Pound,Virginia)

What do you think will be the best race to see this year?

Terry Blount
  (3:05 PM)

Don't miss the Daytona 500 in two weeks because it's going to be wild. Trust me.

Terry Blount
  (3:06 PM)

Gotta go write a column folks, but it was great to chat again. See you next week. I'm out. Peace.