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April 21, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with David Newton

David Newton
  (1:59 PM)

Silly Season is in full bloom so there's lots to talk about. It's your agenda. Let's chat.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

I was just wondering are Nationwide Series Owner Todd Braun & Nationwide Series Roush driver Colin Braun Related?

David Newton
  (2:01 PM)

Never thought about it, but I don't think so.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

Which Sprint Cup race did Shawna Robinson qualified in the top 20?

David Newton
  (2:04 PM)

Her best qualifying effort was 24th at Daytona in 2002. I once did a day in the life story on her. I showed up at 5:30 am and she had curlers in her head. Was a fun day.

Chris (Atlanta)

When is NASCAR going to disallow Sprint Cup Drivers to race in the Nationwide Series? I know Sponsorship is a factor but it's just a joke of a series if Cup Drivers win almost every week. They need to do something or just abolish the series.

David Newton
  (2:05 PM)

I don't see that ever ending. The series and sponsors and tracks need the Cup drivers to draw attention.

JIm (DC)

I read comments by Coach Gibbs saying that they could not get a deal done with Kahne. Is JGR being too cautious about expanding to 4 teams or are they looking at how over expansion has hurt other teams?

David Newton
  (2:06 PM)

It all boiled down to getting a sponsor. When that didn't happen Kahne moved on to Hendrick.

Frank (the couch)

Why don't more drivers try and get under Johnson's skin more? Johnson seemed surprised that Gordon would be racing him so hard.

David Newton
  (2:07 PM)

Most driver like to say they race others the way others race them. Johnson races most people straight up and nobody is willing to do anything just for the sake of getting in his head. Would be fun to watch, but I don't think they could get in Johnson's head. He's too confident in himself and his team.

Ryan (Reynoldsburg,Ohio)

Is Dale Jr, finaly back?

David Newton
  (2:08 PM)

He's getting there, but until he puts a car in Victory Lane and consistently runs in the top 10 for more than a few weeks you can't say he's all the way back.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

It Looks like that Kurt Busch will drive the # 22 Pennzoil/Shell Dodge, Brad Keselowski will probably drive the #2 Miller Lite Dodge, who will drive the #12 Dodge?

David Newton
  (2:09 PM)

I haven't gotten an indication the 12 will be used yet. I was told that the company remained committed to three teams with Sam Hornish as the third driver. Whether they would move Sam to the 12 or expand to four teams with Justin Allgaier I haven't heard.

Tyler (Arkansas)

Ok if mark is looking for a ride in 2012. I once heard him say that he was open to finishing his career back at roush. With the performance of the 6 car, i figure that ride will be open. As a huge fan, I hope he stays with the HMS organization some how but yet how cool would mark back in the 6 valvoline be?

David Newton
  (2:10 PM)

That would be ironic if he wound back in the 6, but I am hearing more and more that ownership may be in his future if he can work it out.

Tracy (CT)

So do you see sideways Sam staying with Penske? He's sitting 29th or so in points. Wouldn't Allgaier be more atractive to sponsors? He's young and seems like a kid with his head on his shoulders.

David Newton
  (2:11 PM)

As I said earlier, Penske is committed to Sam being in a third car next season. But your point is well taken.

Heather (NJ)

With Penske keeping Sam in the #77 for 2011 does that mean Algaier and Parker Kligerman become top free agents?

David Newton
  (2:11 PM)

I'm not sure how much longer they have on their contracts with Penske. As far as I know Jason will drive Nationwide again with maybe a few Cup races.

Tracy (CT)

Where do you see Bud going? Harvick doesn't really seem like a Bud man. Neither does anyone at MWR (jayski said Bud was talking to them)

David Newton
  (2:12 PM)

Every team out there with a sponsor opening is talking to Bud. RCR is talking and so is MWR. I think Harvick would make a good Bud man by the way.

Billy (Reno)

Will the Kyle fan finaly stop crying about Dave Rogers now? He took a junk car and made it into a contender when Kyle wanted to take it to the garage. Not a Kyle fan, but Rogers has tallent.

David Newton
  (2:14 PM)

More impressed with the way Rogers kept Kyle interested in the race when the car was junk. How many times have we heard him sound so frustrated he's ready to park it?

Clay (ct)

Am I the only one not impressed with winning 5 in a row in the minors?? I bet Arod can go hit 5 home runs in a row in the minors.

David Newton
  (2:14 PM)

If it was that easy he'd win five in a row everywhere. I'd say it's a pretty impressive feat.

Ryan Farrell (Milwaukee )

Idea:Pay a point for each lap led (or two or three laps led...whatever balances out good for the amount of laps that particular race has) This way dominant cars that are always leading will always make the chase and it will put the premium back on performance even though GWC finishes make it possible for back markers to steal wins every week. Oh and remember that really boring (until the end) race at Talladega? How many lead changes are there going to be when every lap pays a point? No more riding around. I would say if a guy could theoretically lead every lap (no matter what track) the point bonus for that race should be around 100 to 150 points on top of the current points for winning. Instead of putting the emphasis on winning, put it on leading and domination. If we are going to have wild finishes at least the guys who win the first 495 miles will come out alright, and the finish will still be good. Now people have a reason to watch for 500 miles.

David Newton
  (2:16 PM)

I've heard a similar idea kicked around, particularly for the plate tracks. It has some merit but I'd have to do a little more math before going all in with it.

Ryan Farrell (Milwaukee )

New Idea:Chase Elimination.....Imagine this12 drivers.Every race in the chase, the last place driver is eliminated from Championship eligibility.After 1 race, there is 11 drivers eligible, after 2 --10, 3---9, etc.The final race will be settled by three drivers, the highest finisher wins the championship. Just imagine the big one at Talladega with the teams racing to get out of the garage to beat the other chase contenders on the track....mayhem, excitement, and most importantly ratings.

David Newton
  (2:17 PM)

It would keep the intrigue, but I just don't think it works in racing the way it does in other sports because there would be 40 other cars on the track and they could determine the winner.

Justin (Northern Virginia)

As a Kurt Busch fan please help me out here. Why would Kurt agree to a deal that would take him from his current team to a new team if he's still with the same organization? Will he still keep Steve Addington as CC?

David Newton
  (2:17 PM)

From what I understand they'll just flop teams, crew and all. Nothing will change except the paint scheme.

Ryan Farrell (Milwaukee )

Another IdeaInstead of three 2 lap restarts, run one 5 lap restart so that there isn't mayhem on the restart lap with guys going four and five wide. With 5 laps, there is enough time to make some calculated moves and there wouldn't be as many two tire winners. Or you could just leave it alone because mayhem is a lot of fun to watch.

David Newton
  (2:18 PM)

Five, 2, it wouldn't make a difference. There'd still be mayhem on the last two laps.

Justin M (Boone, NC)

At Texas, JPM tried to avoid the big one by driving through the grass and instead dug in and slammed the wall. At Talladega, there constantly are times where a driver is on his roof and begins violently flipping once he reaches the infield. My question is why aren't we using an artificial surface for the infield? It'll pay itself back by not needing as much paint/maintenance/etc. Plus, turf has a slightly more consistent surface than mud.

David Newton
  (2:19 PM)

This is just a guess, but grass tends to slow the cars. On turf they might just pick up speed on a slide and do more damage. Again, just a guess.

Holly (Vegas)

Reports are out there that Kylee is going to "defend" his NW title. When will these guys realize that they are not impressing anyone by running full time NW??? It turns off a good chunk of the fans. I would rather see Allgair, Bayne. Kligerman, Steven Wallace, etc running. That series has become a joke.

David Newton
  (2:20 PM)

These guys are competitive and when a driver gets off to a good start as Busch has they want more. We'll see.

Octo (Moms)

We think that Bud should go sponsor the master of the minors himself in the truck series! Good idea?

David Newton
  (2:21 PM)

Not sure Bud wants to hang out in the minors.

Octo (Moms)

We think that Kyle would gladly hire Kasey and teach him to drive in a KBM truck next year. What say you?

David Newton
  (2:22 PM)

I don't think you'd have to teach Kasey anything. He's pretty good in most cars or trucks he gets into.

Trevor (Chicago)

I just read that Kyle wants to be known as one of the best. In order to do that would he not have to win against the best (Cup) and not the up and comers (NW)??

David Newton
  (2:22 PM)

You're the smart one. Yes, if Busch wants to prove he's the best he needs to start winning Cup championships and Cup races.

Todd (Ga)

IS this the weekend JR returns to victory lane?

David Newton
  (2:23 PM)

He may be my pick.

Todd (Ga)

How will Shell leaving RCR for Penske effect Harvicks decision of where he drives in 2011?

David Newton
  (2:23 PM)

They've been negotiating a return to RCR with Harvick. This just means Childress will have to pair Harvick with a good sponsor to keep him. It also means other organizations aren't so willing to take Harvick without a sponsor.

John (Georgia)

Why the heck can the majority of the drivers NOT do the right thing and put their hand over their heart during the National Anthem. I see many of them talking, and I only get the view from TV. Is there something I am missing? Sorry, but I am an enlisted military man and it makes me IRATE to see this disrespect every Saturday and Sunday!

David Newton
  (2:25 PM)

I believe most of them do show respect by putting their hand over their heart or standing respectfully with their arms at their sides. I don't see anybody doing anything to disrespect the flag or anthem.

RAY GORDON REID ( DOTHAN ALABAMA 36302)

QUESTION TO DAVID NEWTON AT 2.25 HI DAVID WHO DO YOU HAVE SUNDAY AT TALLADEGA

David Newton
  (2:26 PM)

Now you're gonna pin me down. I really like Junior. He was close at Daytona and I believe he'll close the door this weekend. If not him, Gordon has to win soon.

Ryan Davis (Dallas, TX)

As a huge Penske racing fan (both Nascar and IRL) I love the new deal with Shell. But I am very suprised they will be taking Kurt out of the "Blue Duece" and putting Brad in it. Did Kurt have a say in the decision, or was this all the Captains decesion to move sponsors around?

David Newton
  (2:27 PM)

I would imagine it was a combination of what Shell wanted, Miller wanted and Penske wanted. None of this is easy. But to put a younger driver in the Miller Lite car makes sense to me.

Bill S. (High Point, NC)

It's only April and 'Silly Season" is going strong. If its this crazy already are there more surprises out on the horizion?

David Newton
  (2:28 PM)

I'm sure there are, although the Shell deal was more of a surprise than Kahne going to Hendrick. If you recall I mentioned that as a strong possibility here earlier in the year.

Robert (Arlington, TX)

#2 to #22 is just a numbers switch with Kurt, Addington and the whole #2 team becoming the Shell/Penzoil #22 Dodge right?

David Newton
  (2:28 PM)

Right.

Bill S. (High Point, NC)

Saw that Kyle and JGR are thinking about running the full Nationwide series this year. Is this something that we'll know the answer to soon, or will it be decided by the time the series leaves Charlotte?

David Newton
  (2:29 PM)

They'll have to commit soon. Kyle can't miss a race and hope to defend. I haven't looked at where he initially planned to step out first but it can't be far off.

Phil (CT)

Will JLo 20 make the Chase. No one is talking about how well he is doing this sophomore season. He could be even better if it weren't for these accidents which were not his fault.

David Newton
  (2:30 PM)

He was my darkhorse before the season. If he can stay close for another few months I'd say he has a solid shot.

David (AZ)

If Kevin Harvick is a stock, then are you buying or selling?

David Newton
  (2:30 PM)

Buying. But his stock would rise much higher if he wins a race.

Cale (Boston)

Any chance this Penske shuffle results in Hornish going back to IndyCar?

David Newton
  (2:30 PM)

Not from what I'm told.

Susan (NC)

Why the secrecy of testing in Indy? No times released? No media allowed inside track? Tires, again?

David Newton
  (2:31 PM)

It's not unusual to have a closed tire test. Happens all the time. I'm not complaining. Didn't want to spend two days in Indy just yet.

Jon_jonis_HERE (Agawam,Ma)

Will you please make an effort to avoid troll questions and keep this a troll free conversation???

David Newton
  (2:31 PM)

Yessir.

Woody (Denver)

Busch in the 22? BK in the Blue Deuce? KK in the 5? Harvick in who knows what with no Shell? STOP THE INSANITY!

David Newton
  (2:32 PM)

It's just the way of the world as NASCAR has come to know it.

Adam (Atlanta)

With Kurt in the 22, do you see the present day 2 crew following him there and basically all the number/sponsor change mean is a decal change? I know Addington will follow Kurt because his contract says so.

David Newton
  (2:32 PM)

Pretty much what I've said. No need to panic. They aren't tearing apart a good team.

JJD (Seattle)

What's the reasoning behind Penske changing the car number to 22? It just seems kind of random.

David Newton
  (2:33 PM)

I would suspect because the 2 is identified with Miller Lite that Shell wanted a car that it could brand with its own identity.

Donna (MD)

Do you think Coach Gibbs might hire Harvicks to be a full-time back up driver like he did with Mears?

David Newton
  (2:33 PM)

Maybe Delana Harvick. She could sit and watch just like Casey did.

CRISSY (MAINE)

CAN KASEY KAHNE STILL MAKE THE CHASE,DO U SEE BUD STAYING WITH HIM

David Newton
  (2:34 PM)

I don't see him making the Chase. As for Bud I wouldn't totally rule it out but the more I talk to folks the more skeptical I am that will happen.

chris (glenville, wv)

Is Kurt's team going to remain the same just with different decals and number?

David Newton
  (2:34 PM)

Yep.

Jay (PA)

hey newt, i heard the news on penske bringing in shell penzoil.just wanted to know why they wouldnt keep kurt in the miller lite 2 AND put bad Brad in the 22 with shell pennzoil?typical nascar,u buy all the miller lite 2 gear and then find out hes goin to a diiferent number and sponsor.THATS THE LAST TIME I BUY NASCAR GEAR

David Newton
  (2:35 PM)

It's a pretty big deal for Shell and they want the most proven driver for the money.

kris (wi)

does jeff still have issues with his back? i havent heard anything about that since last year.

David Newton
  (2:36 PM)

The training program he's on seems to be doing the trick. He hasn't mentioned being in pain for a while. He looked more determined to bring pain to teammate JJ last week.

Ed (Fort Worth)

In light of the Roethlisberger suspension, I find it interesting that a lot of fans (and some in the media) continue to complain about how vanilla drivers are today. I enjoy a great sound bite as much as the next person, but at least Nascar doesn't have to deal with embarrassing situations like the NFL, NBA, and MLB seem to go through. The worst instance I can think of is the Mayfield suspension, and if that's the case, give me Nascar any day.

David Newton
  (2:38 PM)

NASCAR folks have argued that for years. You also need to remember that there are only 43-50 Cup drivers and more than 1400 NFL players, so the odds of somebody getting out of line are higher.

TG (PA)

How was your mini vacation? did you say something on twitter about not wanting to mow your lawn? Are you headed to Dega now to see Junior win this week!!

David Newton
  (2:39 PM)

Mini-vacation was awesome. Hilton Head is a great place. Did I mention we showed up a week early. In-laws or us had the week wrong. Was joking about the lawn. I mowed it earlier today. And I'm headed to Dega tomorrow. Can't wait.

Jon_jonis_HERE (Agawam,Ma)

Do you think KK will be in the 09 with a full time HMS crew? That would help that team greatly and also be fun to see what HMS can really do with a lower tier team!

David Newton
  (2:40 PM)

Might work. Maybe Mark Martin will be the owner and take it over when Kahne is done. Just thinking outloud.

Roscoe (Cali)

When did Miller Lite decide to drop Kurt in favor of Brad?

David Newton
  (2:40 PM)

It's been in the works for a while. Exactly how long I can't say.

Thomas (MN)

After shaking off his bad luck in the first few races Keselowski's looked pretty solid in his first full season for Penske. Can he get Penske his first Talladega win Sunday?

David Newton
  (2:41 PM)

He told me he'd do the same thing this year than he did last if it meant a win. Read the piece on ESPN.com. And you're right, he's had four straight top 16 finishes I believe.

Johnny (Octoville)

We are very happy to see the Captain Roger Penske take an old has-been like Kurt Bush taken out of the Miller Lite car replace him with a young racing stud like Brad Keselowski. The Blue Deuce will win the Cup in 2011! Go BK!

David Newton
  (2:41 PM)

That my folks is optimism.

kevin (new jersey)

why does everyone assume that kasey kahne will go to stewart-haas next season. just because hendrick runs motors doesnt mean tony needs to put kasey in a car to rick hendrick. if stewart starts a third team next year don't you think he would grab harvick for a long term deal instead of kahne for a one year deal and then have to look for a driver after that.

David Newton
  (2:42 PM)

I am thinking the same thing. That's why making Martin an owner of another team like Tony did makes more sense to me.

Jay (PA)

so its gonna be keselowski in the 2 miller, kurt in the 22 shell pennzoil, harvick in some stewart hass, kasey kahne at hendricks, AND HERES MYBIGGEST PREDICTION.DALE JR IN THE #3 BUDWEISER CAR FOR RCR

David Newton
  (2:42 PM)

You are dreaming.

Jamerson (Georgia)

Will Steve Addington and the #2 crew be going to the #22 car with Kurt Busch? Will Jay Guy and the #12 crew be going to the #2 car with Brad Keselowski?

Deuce (Denver, CO)

What's your guess for what happens to the 77 and 12 next year? Who's in them, who's on them? Can Penske keep both and expand to 4 cars? He seems like one of the few people who could manage that in this down economy.

David Newton
  (2:44 PM)

Penske officials say they want to keep Sam Hornish as the third driver. They say a new sponsor will be announced soon. Whether he stays in the 77 or moves to the 12 remains to be seen.

kevin (new jersey)

what sleeper should we look at this week at talladega, i have my eye on david ragan he seems to do well there.

David Newton
  (2:44 PM)

Paul Menard. Bank on it.

John (Buffalo, Ny)

Are there indications that Budweiser won't remain in Nascar? Or are they searching for a new driver/team to sponsor now that Kahne is moving to HMS and probably won't take on competition to PepsiCo? Perhaps a move to Harvick?

David Newton
  (2:45 PM)

They are talking to numerous teams, RCR for Harvick among them.

Ray (ct)

Did you notice how everyone is pumped up because Gordon is showing some fire in the car. When Jimmie does the same thing everyone says he is whining.

David Newton
  (2:45 PM)

I think they're pumped up because Gordon's fire is aimed at his teammate. Makes things much hotter.

Jay (PA)

man im so bummed about the texas race on monday. looks like the spoiler made the racing even worse.48 didnt even win n i didnt wanna watch

David Newton
  (2:45 PM)

You can take your tongue out of your cheek now.

Woody (Denver)

Has there been more chatter about Budweiser going to RCR? If so, any early indicators if Kahne will be the GoDaddy.com guy instead?

David Newton
  (2:47 PM)

Budweiser as I've said is talking to lots of teams, RCR one of them. As for GoDaddy.com the only way I can see Kahne with that sponsor is if Danica Patrick opts not to come to Cup in 2012. Can you imagine Kahne doing AllState-like commmercials for GoDaddy, ripping open his firesuit for the middle-aged housewives?

Jay (PA)

ANY CHANCE WE SEE JUNEBUG IN THE BUD #3 NEXT YEAR AT RCR?MAN THAT'D BE SWEET

David Newton
  (2:48 PM)

He's still got a few years left on his deal with Hendrick and I don't see Hendrick giving away his cash cow.

Cory (Geneva, IL)

We've heard drivers make comments in the past that anyone could drive at Talledega. Is that true? Could I go out there tomorrow and run 160 MPH or faster?

David Newton
  (2:49 PM)

You probably could. I've gotten in a simulator at Dega and Daytona and done well. Put me at Bristol and I spin out almost every lap.

RAY GORDON REID (sunrise fl 33326)

QUESTION TO DAVID NEWTON AT 2:07 CAN YOU TELL ME HOW TO FIX MY CAPS LOCK?

David Newton
  (2:49 PM)

Tap it again.

Laura (Ft. Hood, Tx)

When is Nascar gonna do something about 1 owner-Henricks-getting so much power with 6,7, 8 teams and cornering the driver and sponsors market?

David Newton
  (2:50 PM)

It's not NASCAR's job to slow Hendrick down. It's everybody else's job to catch him.

Jamerson (Georgia)

Dave, can you remember any time in recent history when drivers moved to different cars within the same team like Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski are doing?

David Newton
  (2:51 PM)

I'm sure it's happened before, but I just can't think of the time.

Justin (Northern Virginia)

What'll happened with Steve Addington? How is the 22 team going to be formed?

David Newton
  (2:52 PM)

Just a number change, not a crew change.

CJ (Bridgeton, MO)

With Childress losing Shell do you expect that to be a 2 car team for Burton and Boyer with Harvick going to Furniture Row or maybe TRD with Labonte?

David Newton
  (2:52 PM)

I've got a hunch Harvick is going to get a long-term deal with RCR now.

kevin (new jersey)

why would penske take his best driver out of his most reconizable car with miller and give it to brad k

David Newton
  (2:53 PM)

Maybe because Shell, the sponsor paying the bills, wanted it.

JJD (Seattle)

Can I rebut the "No Cup drivers in the Nationwide Series"-argument? Teams aren't JUST developing drivers - there are car builders and crew chief and all guys in between. How better to judge your development in those areas than with a Cup driver? I'd doubt Jack Roush is learning much about the guys who work on Braun and Stenhouse's teams compared to what he learns about the guys who work on the 60 crew. (And Allgaier's win at Bristol isn't a "moment" without beating the Cup guys, too.)

David Newton
  (2:56 PM)

Thanks for the rebut.

Dave (FL)

If Jimmie Johnson and Gordon were in the 16 and 17 the last five years, and Kenseth and Biffle were in the 48 and 24, would they have accumulated as many wins, and would the Hendrick guys have the same struggles as the roush guys during those years?

David Newton
  (2:58 PM)

Interesting question. I can't say for sure but most argue JJ and JG are as much a product of their team as they are talented. I'm not saying Kenseth and Biffle would have just as many wins, but I'd bet they'd have a few more than they have.

Jarrett (VA)

Do you think that with the spoiler that Denny Hamlin will become the domminant driver in NASCAR instead of Jimmie Johnson

David Newton
  (2:58 PM)

Nope. One more lap and Johnson would have won Monday. Had it not been for the big crash Hamlin had just a top 5 car.

Hector (Orlando)

When did Henricks lose their competitive edge to Joe Gibbs Racing at the plate tracks?

David Newton
  (3:00 PM)

Not sure they lost their competitive edge, but Roush was dominant at plates last season with two of the four wins.

David Newton
  (3:01 PM)

That's all I have time for folks. Have to get packed for Talladega so I can go watch, as the reader said, Dale Jr. win. Make sure you follow the race weekend on ESPN.com and if you have more questions for me send them to DNewtonespn on twitter.