Everybody ready for the Chase? Have your favorites? Did you read my column on paybacks? Who do you think should get it. Love to chat in the comments section of the column about that after this if you have time. Enough blabbering. Fire away.
Since there will be no IZOD IndyCar Series race the last weekend of July in 2011 will Danica Patrick race in the Brickyard 400?
Good question. I have asked for her schedule and they tell me they still are tweaking things. Brickyard certainly would be a big publicity draw. I would imagine she would with no conflict.
Hey David. I understand that NASCAR is trying to motivate drivers to go for wins , but don't you think they should be rewarded for points position at the end of the regular season, possibly a 5 point gap between drivers based on standings just before the chase. You could still give 10 points for wins, but I think it would be a better setup if they were still rewarded in some way for regular season consistency..
If you read my column a few weeks ago I believe wins should count for about 25 more points than second place, maybe a bit more. I borrowed the system the late David Poole came up with giving drivers 500 for their first win in the regular season and Chase. It would work. Go back and look it up.
Who outside of the top 12 do you think could spoil some wins for some of the chasers? I think Mcmurray and Dale Jr. could show serious threats at Dega, and Biffle could be a factor at Homestead.
McMurray and Dale Jr. are good picks, but Biffle is in the Chase so he would be a spoiler. Motonya has been close on ovals this year, too, so don't discount him. Reutimann has been strong on a few occaions as well. But for the most part I see Chase drivers winning.
With the talk that broke yesterday about Allgaier and the Verizon sponsorship leaving,where do you think Justin will be next year?I gotta believe Penske doesn't want to let him go,but if it has to happen,what would be the odds of him going to Rusty Wallace?I say that because of the long history between Roger and Rusty but we all know Justin is way better than Brendan Gaughn and well,we know Steven isn't going anywhere.
JGR was rumored to be interested in Justin a while back, but I really haven't heard anything solid yet.
David, with the news that Allgaier is out of ride where do you think he goes? Could he end at RPM with that third car mentioned last week?
Hadn't thought of that, but it would make sense. I know they were interested in Hornish Jr. and Speed if they are freed, but one of their people told me last weekend that a hot young driver may be a better pick. Allgaeir would be that.
David, I noticed that Kevin Harvicks primary sponsorship deal with Budweiser next year is for 26 races. What sponsors have been named or heard to take those ten races that Bud isn't the primary sponsor on his car? Could Reese's fill some of those Races?
No word on that. Sorry, but will keep my ears open.
Who do you think will win the Sylvania 300 at Loudon,NH?
Believe it will come down to Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson. I'll say Gordon breaks his losing streak.
Which drivers do you think will part ways & who will be the new drivers after Homestead in the Sprint Cup Series?
There aren't five drivers worth mentioning that will part ways. Most of the deals for next year are done. The only names in jeopardy are Sam Hornish Jr. and Scott Speed. Hornish would be gone due to lack of sponsorship. Speed would be replaced by Kahne. Not a lot o drama out there.
There are reports Allgaier is looking for a job for next season. This too me just shows cup guys like his teammate are hogging the sponsors and NASCAR needs to give them a ten race limit or something in the series.
This is an interesting twist since Roger Penske was emphastic earlier this year that he planned to hold Justin to the final year of his deal.
When was the first episode of Driving Shotgun with Kyle Busch? Is the first one tonight at 5:30 or is it the second episode? But then it moves tomorrow to 6 o'clock? Sorry, do you have the details?
It aired Tuesday night after Monday's was postponed due to US Open tennis and the second was to follow. At least that is what I was told happened. I wasn't at the television when it came on. I did catch 30 for 30 with Chrissy Everett and Martina. Excellent.
I hear Braun is selling his team, I didn't see Leffler's name in the list of drivers for next season, what's his future look like?
Doesn't look good for Jason.
Is there a team cap in the Nationwide and Truck series? Braun is the only one with 4 cars anyways...
I assume the four-team cap in Cup goes for Natiowide and Trucks, but honestly never thought to ask.
Hey Newt! How do you think Junior will do in the Chas--- err nevermind. Ha ha ha! Go Clint!
How about this for bold. I bet Junior compiles more points in the Chase than at least two of those in the Chase.
I think the best thing for Junior would be for everyone to chill and leave the guy alone and stop putting unrealistic expectations on him as well as stop blaming him for NASCARs sagging ratings/fan interest. Some idiots have even suggested Junior should retire for the good of NASCAR! These people are idiots, do you agree? Let the man be himself!!!
I agree, there are a lot of idiots out there. Also agree it's time to lay off Junior, but he benefited from his popularity so he has to take the bad with the good.
If you look at Eury Jrs stats and compare them to McGrews its pretty obvious how much worse of a CC McGrew is. If Junior continues to get beat by start and parkers for the rest of the year like he did at Richmond do you really think Mr. H will not take one more swing at it and make some changes? Amp and National Guard gotta be getting pretty mad with the top 30 finishes every week....
Gotta admit the Richmond race was disturbing. This is a track where Junior has excelled. But Mr. H has won 13 or 14 more titles than I have, so I can't argue with his logic. But from the outside looking in if this continues in the Chase and early into next year a change will have to be made.
If you look at HMS as a whole they really arent as dominant as they have been in the past. Its pretty much been the 48 and nobody else, yeah the 24 is in the chase but he wont get it done...the "experts" have been saying that Gordon was gonna win any week now for months. Its all about winning and the 5/24/88 teams aren't getting it done. Roush made dramatic changes/swaps with all his teams in the past when they were underperforming and it worked out good for him. Any chance Mr. H does some dramatic changes with the 5/24/88? Please don't give me "its all due to the spoiler" answer either, there is more going on than that...
Hey, the 24 has had a pretty awesome season wins aside. It's been about the 48 and everybody else at HMS for four, actually five or six, straight years. Last year was special with their 1-2-3 finish in points., but you can't expect that every year. And you say the 24 won't get it done in the Chase, I actually picked Jeff to win it. You talk about Roush changes, well Edwards hasn't won in two years and he had a pretty strong year as well, wins aside.
Hey David, which guys outside the chase have the best shot at winning a race over the final 10 weeks?
David...Does the fact that JPM had 1 win, 2 poles, 5 top 5's, and 13 top 10's while missing The Chase show that NASCAR needs to revisit their scoring system?
The scoring system does need to be revisted, but not because of JPM. Look at what his temamate, Jamie McMurray, did. He won the Daytona 500, Brickyard 400, was second at Darlington and the Coke 600, third at Bristol. Those are the biggest races of the year and he's not in. Winning deserves more points.
QUETION TO DAVID NEWTON AT 2.25 GREETINGS DAVID WHO YOU HAVE FOR LOUDON SUNDAY
Jeff Gordon. And you?
Hey Newt, On the 2 Riding Shotgun with Kyle shows, I've heard Rowdy call himself "fat" 3 different times. Does Rowdy have a little weight problem like Stewart?
It hasn't gotten to Stewart proportions yet, but he has put on a little in the midsection. So have I. Stay tuned, later in the week I am announcing a diet challenge with a driver in a blog.
Well, fiddle-dee-dee, I watched Gone with the Wind last night too. Did you and McGee watch it together because he's talking about it too!
How many times did Scarlett say fiddle-dee-dee? No, Ryan watched Days of Thunder. I was on the Gone with the Wind bandwagon. We did cross lines a few times.
On ESPN Riding Shotgun with Kyle Busch, it looked like Rowdy was at the new KBM shop. Did they resolve the problems with the contractor and finally move in?
Was told they were planning to move in before the Charlotte race. Maybe they have part of it open.
The Chase rolls in New England...can't wait for Sunday!! Newt, at what point in a race does a driver switch from I am trying to win this race to let me get as many points as possible?
When it's obvious he has no shot at winning with speed or pit strategy. Know that is a bit simplified, but not sure what else you're looking for.
Great story on possible chase paybacks but what about Kurt's feud with Jimmie or Gordon's feud with Jimmie or what Stewart did to Rowdy last year at Daytona?
All good points. Meet me in the comments section after the Chat and we'll discuss and see who agrees with you.
The picture of Matt Kenseth's little girl sleeping on pit road was so cute. I bet you would never see Jeff Gordons kids doing that.
It was just crazy luck I was standing there. The look on Johnson's face as he stood next to Kenseth was priceless. That girl really is cute. Must have gotten it from the mom.
Hey david, two things first what do you think of Denny's chances this week? And how awesome were the F-22 at Richmond last weekend?
I'd say awesome to both.
Hey, Dave. I heard that Kyle Busch is going to start up a NASCAR driving school called "The Rowdy Busch Bad@## Wheelman Institute". Any truth to this? I'm thinking about enrolling.
If only you were dale Jr. and this was true. By the way, did I mention I named my fantasy football team KBA. Anybody wants to guess what it stands for. The K is for Kyle.
Do drivers ever pay back reporters with practical jokes or bad interviews?
Now that would be fun, but for some of them it would be hard to distinguish between a real bad interview and their normal interview.
Hey, Dave. I'm desperate. Pops doesn't want to be my crew chief. Ray Evernham doesn't want to be my crew chief. Chad Knaus doesn't want to be my crew chief. Will you be my crew chief? Anything would be better than Lance.
I will, but I only want to work 24 races a year. And no yelling at me. If I take the job I'm right all the time.
Do you think Nascar will do something about the Start and Park teams? i think they should have to run the full races, because in my opinion the start and parks ruining the sport
Really? How is it ruining the sport? There's really nothing that can be done. Not sure anything needs to be done. As long as those guys aren't taking out drivers that legitimately can win it's not different than having the Cubs in baseball. Didn't they park it about mid-season?
Since Mr. H says no cc change on #88 and they already shifted engineers and key personel from #5 to #88, what's left in the tool box to fix Dale jr?
good article on possible paybacks in the Chase. as a Gordon fan I just have a bad feeling about Truex wrecking Jeff when he is running well. Do you think Kurt Busch would payback JJ if he had the chance with the race on the line due to their previous incidents?
Might be dicey for a Chase driver to mix it up with another Chase driver. Wouldn't benefit either in the long run. As for a non-Chase driver on a Chase driver, have at it. And thanks.
Sooo, if the media thinks Dale, Jr. is such a failure and should be released by Hendrick, how is it that Rousch continues to keep David Ragan with one of the largest sponsors in UPS??
First, what media says Dale Jr. is a failure and should be released? I didn't. As for Ragan, Roush I heard wanted to make a change but the only way he could keep UPS for 2011 the way the contract was written was to keep the driver.
what would you rather win, daytona 500 or indy 500 and why?
Daytona 500. More real NASCAR history.
Do you feel Dale Earnhardt, Jr. would do better if him and his step-mom, Teresa Earnhardt, could work their differences out and possibly work together like a family and a team? Bringing Dale Earnhardt Inc. to it's glory days? DEI is fully capable of returning to Sprint Cup anyways.
Not sure if Dale Jr. would do better, but it would be great for the sport in my humble opinion. And Dale Jr. did seem to perform better when he had a bigger say in things and was surrounded by family, even if some of it he didn't get along with.
Is there any way to reduce the costs of running a team when a driver like Jeff Gordon has problems landing a full time sponsor?
David...over/under 0.5 mulligans in the Chase for this year's champ?
0.5? I'll go over, but only by 0.5.
Do you know when Danica 2011 Nationwide Series schedule will be announced?
Have asked for it. I would suspect soon, but really no reason to commit yet.
How long before Kyle Busch become "NASCAR Most Popular Driver" I feel as though it is only a matter of time. It would be good for NASCAR and Dale Jr if someone else takes the reign of Most Popular Driver" What do you think?
Love it. And agree, that sort of shake up would be great for the sport.
If you can't take the heat......Dale jr is the one who said he wants to win races, championships and will race "ruthless". Why doesn't the media and fans hold Dale jr to his words?
How much more can we pile on? Really.
Which would be a better race track to go to see a race for the first time: Richmond or Martinsville?
Richmond is considered one of the top races on the circuit, but personally I love Martinsville. Great place to see a race, racing almost always is good, lot of old-school history.
Spinning off a tangent you mentioned, instead of it being Kyle and Denny going for the championship at Homestead, what if it came down to Jeff and Jimme? I wouldn't want to be Mr. H in that situation, and I'd put my money on Gordon. Been a long time since he started the drive for five.
Mr. H would be thrilled to have that battle as he did a few years ago. Not sure he'd want to be the mediator after the race if it was down to the wire. I'd put my money on Gordon as well. Hungry.
The ESPN Riding Shotgun with Kyle is amazing. Do you know if there are plans for more of these with Kurt, Carl, Denny and the other chase favorites?
I don't, and sorry I missed the first episode. Was up to my eyeballs in mulch late yesterday.
Penske cant be serious. Keeping hornish over justin*??
He is loyal to the man.
Is it just me or has the CoT tamed short track racing? It seems like every race is now a "handling" race.
Not tamed, but because the bumpers match up so evenly you don't see cars spinning each other out as easily. Bristol changed more because it was repaved. Still think Martinsville is a great race.
David do you think Jr, will get Eury Jr back as his crew chief? Lance doesent seem to be cutting it?
David, why are people barking that the points system needs changes because the EGR guys missed out? Yeah, they ran strong, but they also had a ton of DNF's and mid-pack runs. They haven't been consistent enough. End of story.
Wouldn't say a ton of DNFs. And the point is, would you rather see a driver who has won two races in the Chase or one who has not won but no better than 10th or worse in points? I would rather see the driver who won get a chance.
Hey David, I asked you this back when you did the story on i-racing with JR but it wasn't posted so I'll ask now. What does an i-racing setup like JR had cost to get set up?
Sorry I missed it the last time. You're testing my memory. He told me....depends on how much you spend for your computer and pedals and such. Think the high end was around $3,000. But you can do it for much cheaper if you already have a computer.
I have Denny going back-to-back this weekend.
Not a bad pick.
David...any chances of Nascar getting rid of, or at least changing their ridiculous "no testing" policy?? As a fan, I do not appreciate spending hundreds of dollars to go watch my favorite driver test a new set up during the race...(see the 88 car at Richmond)...what do you think?
They are looking at revisions. Plans are to test at Daytona, Kentucky and Phoenix, likely the day before teams normally would get there. Could be a handful of other such tests as well.
Forget about McGrew, Hendrick should replace Letarte. Petree said it best during the race two weekends ago that "the 24 starts off well and then can't make the right adjustments throughout the race." I don't care how many top fives Jeff has, he only has one win from since 2007 and to win a championship you have to be able to win races to beat the 48
Don't see that happening since Letarte signed a new deal recently. Jeff really likes him and they have a solid chemistry. Are you going to bust up Osborne and Edwards as well because they havne't won since 2008? It happens.
Who wins the F1 championship: Hamilton or Webber?
I have always said that a win should put you in the chase, so long as you are in the top 35 in points, then use the points to fill in the rest to have a 15 driver chase. What do you think?
I like it all except you should be in the top 20 in points.
Who do you like in the Mosley vs Mora fight ?
Haven't given that one any thought. You?
GWTW should have been on the week before last when everyone was "g'wan to atlanta" to quote Mammie.
LOL. They could have burned the track.
Hi there Newt! In the Chasers photo from Richmond, Rowdy looks like Shaq standing between Stewart and Gordon! is Kyle still growing or have Tony and Jeff shrunk?
Kyle is much taller than those guys. Good thing he wasn't standing next to Mark Martin, although Mark would kill to have been in the picture.
How many race will Jeff Gordon win in the chase? Thanks foe your time
Two. You're welcome.
Hey David, I need to know this. Do you think it is time for Dale Earnhardt, Jr. to drive for another team? I mean face it, it have been almost three years now, Rick Hendrick himself promised to give him wins and his championship that he deserves, but all he has got is one lousy win on a fuel mileage race in Michigan in 2008. Ever since Dale, Jr. went to drive for the team, he career went down hill fast. If you ask me, both Rick Hendrick and Lance McGrew screwed it all up for Dale. They support him with the car and the gear, he goes and drives it. He races his heart out, but nothing happens. So, would you consider of moving out of HMS and heading to maybe EGR, since RCR is full now? Or maybe, bringing DEI back?
He's not going to get better equipment or support personnel anywhere else. Who knows why some things just don't work out. Chemistry is complex. Martin had it last year and doesn't now. You just never know, but I don't think it's time to abandon ship yet.
It's hard to believe that Mr. H and Jeff G. continue to want to keep Steve L. as Crew Chief. Robbie Loomis won a championship w/Jeff and still was let go. I think Hendrick's as an organization is totally overrated. Kasey Kane would do better with Tony Stewart @ Stewart/Hass!
Wow, why all the hate for Letarte today? The guy was third in points during the first 26 and could have won three or four races with a little luck. I say go back to bashing Junior. Kidding.
I had sent an email to Nascar thru the fan council that I am a big fan of leaving things the way they are as far as the chase is concerned, but there are some things that they can tweak to make it interesting. The main thing would be to rotate the schedule of the chase races. Right now the driver with the best 10 race average is none other than # 48 team, and that is one of the main reasons they are 4 time champs. I see they keep talkling about "elimination style" I had suggested that they pick the 5 races through out the year that are the most important to the sport. (Daytona 500, Coke 600, Brickyard 400, Southern 500, and the Richmond Fall Race, and if anyone wins that race they are automatically in the chase. ( Must be in TOP 35 in Points and started every race, NO Start and Parks ) If that is the only reason that they are in they would be part of the "elimination" part of the playoffs and if in the 1st race in the chase they do get a "Top 10" finish they would be eliminated. Then you can have people that have worked hard all year and make it plus ones that win races as well. It is just a thought.
Award for longest question/commentary of the day. Have to admit, like your ideas. Think I have suggested some of that during the season. Let me know if you get through to the fan council. Send me an email or drop me a note on Twitter.
Which track do you think will be to biggest hurdle for Harvick going into the chase?
Kansas. If he's in position after that race watch out.
I will announce soon that I am signing with HMS. That will give Mr. H the wiggle room to replace Lance without going back on his word. I will CC the 88 in 2011 and then in 2012 after MM the CC situation will be evaluated.
Let me know first, thanks. And when did you change the spelling of Kenny?
Hmm....KBA. Kyle Botches Another? as in a chance at the championship? haha, Just kidding. Seriously, how many drivers in the Chase have at least a good chance to win the championship. Seems to the field is the most even its been in a while.
Not quite. Think Brad Keselowski and Bristol. As for second part, five, Johnson, Gordon, Hamlin, Busch and Harvick.
Do you think that Penske telling Algaier that he's free to talk to other teams sends a clear message to Brad K. that he better put up some solid Sprint Cup numbers in 2011 or else?
Not at all. Penske is committed to Brad. He's just saying he can't get a sponsor deal to keep him and if he can find a better option go for it.
Do you think Jr will lose the most popular vote this year and if so who gets it.
I do believe it will be closer than it's been in seven years. If he loses, I am going with Kyle Busch.
I may be misinterpreting his words, but didn't it sound like Rick Hendrick only said that Lance and Junior would be together for the rest of this year? He seemed to skate around the issue of next year. I'm thinking Kenny Francis comes over from RPM and starts crew chiefing the #5 car to get it ready for Kasey. Alan Gustafson moves to the #88 with Junior. Lance McGrew becomes an engineer for the 5/88 shop, working on the cars behind the scenes.
The question,and I was there, was are you comitted to Lance and Junior through the Chase and going into next year. He said yes. I do think you'll see news with Kenny soon, whether he goes to the 5 or to Kahne with Red Bull.
There has been quite a bit written about the idea of if you win a race you are in the chase. Even DW was adament about that. My issue is the rain winners. Last year both the 00 and 20 won races soley because they did not pit with the leaders when the race was cancelled. While a win is a win that it no way to get in the chase. Have you heard anything from NASCAR about supporting the one win idea?
Can't differentiate. A win is a win. You gonna rule out fuel mileage. Two-tire vs. four-tire stop winners?
Do you think Rowdy Busch with his '69 Chevy Camaro muscle car on Riding Shotgun might convert some of those boo birds to become #18 fans?
They could do a lot worse.
With the silly season starting, what is the biggest surprise to you with sponsor changes or driver changes for 2011?
No major surprises. Heard Kahne to HMS before the season. I guess Shell leaving Harvick was the biggest surprise.
Kyle Busch A$$?
Bingo. You win.
Do you think that information that #77 and #12 give to Kurt and Steve is of any value like Mike Ford, Zippy and Dave sharing notes at Gibbs?
I do. Just not as valuable since those cars aren't performing as well as the three Gibbs cars.
Seems every year, some Chase driver finished 40th or worse in the first race and is basically a non-factor from then on. Who's the unlucky dog this year?
Gonna go with Kurt Busch. Not much good has happened the past few weeks.
Are all of the commentators on TV paid for everytime they say "Sunoco" fuel or "Goodyear" tires? Seems like they could get away with saying gas and tires but they always seem to try and get the brand names in. Any sort of financial tie-in that's making them say it? Or, just a way to make sure everyone is getting their monies worth sponsorship-wise and keep them happy?
No sponsor bonuses that I know of. Be willing ot listen to offers for print, though. Kidding. If you notice, I don't give free advertising in print.
Nice article on the paybacks and such. Which track do you think drivers like Truex or Keselowski would be most likely to make a little "accidental" contact with the guys they are feuding with?
Martinsville would be the best candidate. Short track racing always is.
I don't think a win should put you in the Chase. What if your only win is a plate race. We all know that plate racing is a crap-shoot and the scrubs are up front more often than they should be.
Can't differentiate. A win is a win as I said earlier. Perhaps if the win factor were there even the plate races would be more exciting.
David - I think there is a big difference between rain wins and fuel milage and 2 vs. 4 tire stop. In the later everyone knows what the end of the race is and you have to be competitive to be in that position.In the case of rain the person in 20th place says we might as well roll the dice. And that is why I asked the question if you have heard anyting from NASCAR. If Reuteman or Logano got in last year it would have made a mockery of the Chase
You're entitled to your opinion and I appreciate it. I just don't agree totally. On that note, time to run. Enjoy the Chase. Should be a great one.