Good afternoon, all. Thanks for stopping by. Let's go.
Who's the better driver, Dale Earnhardt or Jimmie Johnson?
You mean Dale Sr? JJ is far better at this stage of his career than Sr was.
Question to Mr. Hinton at 2:15pm. Hi, who do you have for this Sunday?
Ray Gordon's getting a following. I have Harvick, on a hunch he'll get stronger on intermediates. He's overdue to win at Texas.
Any rumors on Mark Martin's plans in 2012?
No, but whatever they might be now, they'd probably change anyway. Figure he'll be around, at least part time.
Will Gateway ever revive?? What about Rockingham?
Gateway would need a complete renovation, which nobody out there is likely to be willing to pay for. Crowds are iffy. Rockingham will never return to the Cup tour. Market's too small. And for those who think the Rock was a great track, I snoozed through dozens of boring races there.
Hey Ed. Who do you see replacing Lance McGrew on the 88 team in 2011? One of the possible rumor is Alan G & Lance M switching teams next year or Ron Malec (Don't see that happening). What is your take?
Unless Junior puts up a real hissy fit, I don't see Hendrick changing. Even if Junior does put up a hissy fit, Hendrick might not change.
Great article on Mr. Hunter. Didn't know about him, but he sounds like he was one of the stalwarts in the sport that helped a lot of people through the years without taking much fanfare to himself. My question is on the possible decision to not allow full time Cup drivers to run Nationwide. Why don't the Cup drivers help promote Nationwide by wandering the stands and saying hello to the people there? I realize they may have to make some rules concerning no autographs or something so they don't get swarmed, but it seems to me that something like that would bring the down home atmosphere back to Nascar and let the fans really connect with the stars of the sport. Isn't this something the sport needs right now?
Cup drivers have to get paid about $10,000 just to cross the garage area for a promo spot. Doubt you could drag them out on Saturdays to glad-hand gratis.
Why is the AARP Sponsoring Jeff Gordon and not Mark Martin?
An oft-asked question lately. This is not AARP per se, but more of an anti-hunger campaign.
Good Afternoon.Are any Fords going to show up for the last three races?
Oh, they'll show up -- Roush, RPM, et al. Question is, will they show? as in, how high in the field.
Ed, we can blame the economy, boring racing, NASCAR, etc. for the lack of interest in the sport right now, but I think that we are still missing that iconic driver (such as Petty or Earnhardt)that captured many people's attention. What are your thoughts? Also is anybody running for ROY next year? And if no, has this ever happened (with the exception of the first sanctioned year)?
People liked the drivers you mention mainly because they won. If JJ wins and people refuse to like him, maybe the problem is in the mood of society. Resenting winners.
The biggest lesson that Danica should have learned this season is that there is no safe way to make laps in the rear of the Nationwide field. Danger lurks in every corner. Do you think she will be more aggressive in trying to get to the front of fields next year?
I sure hope so. I think she's always at her best when she's aggressive, in NASCAR or open-wheel.
At the beginning of the year there were some reports that SHR had a 3rd pit crew in training and they were being used by the # 71 team in 2010. They were in preparation for a 3rd team next year. Do you know what is going to happen with that pit crew for 2011? With SHR not currently fielding a 3rd team in 2011.
Crewmen -- mostly ex-athletes, football and baseball players mainly -- move from team to team. If SHR has no need for them, they may well split up and sell their talents individually to other teams.
If Danica keeeps on improving the last 3 races this year & the 13 or 14 races next year do you see Danica going to nascar full time in 2012.
Yes, I do. She's free of her strictest IndyCar restrictions in 2012, and besides, who knows what will be left of IndyCar by then?
Hey Ed, do you think going back to unaligned bumpers would help racing at short tracks and such? 2 Richmond races I went to were snoozfests. Kicked myself for not going to Martinsville though.
I don't think the drivers would put up with unaligned bumpers because when you got hit from behind it raised the whole rear end and tires off the track. Not a comfy situation.
"but more of an anti-hunger campaign" Kinda ironic seeing how Jeff's wife is a super model he is thin as board. maybe it's just me
Hard to figure nowadays how and why corporate sponsors do what they do.
QUESTION TO ED HINTON AT 2.20 PM HI ED WHO HAVE FOR FORT WORTH SUNDAY
Just don't let the Army recruiters get you, Ray Gordon. You could be in one place for a long time.
Is Jim Hunter a hall of famer. Is so how soon.
Yes, he's a hall of famer. But probably not till the same time some of the journalism greats go in, such as Chris Economaki and Ken Squier. At the current rate of classes that are too small, I'd say it'll take eight or 10 years for Hunter to get in. Which is sad.
Does Scott Speed stay in NASCAR after this season? If so, what teams would be willing to take a chance on him?
If his bud Michael Waltrip can find something for him to do, yes. Otherwise, I'm not sure too many owners would be comfortable with not-yet-proven driving and his unique personality.
Any news on the team who was to be "owned by the fans"? I think they were # 76. Also, Hall of Fame, any chance they come back?
Nothing new there, nor will there ever likely be. Gazillions of supposed fan-owned operations have come up. They just don't succeed. Not nearly enough money coming in, and the people who try it don't know how to manage it anyway.
He may be more accomplished, but you can't say for sure he's better. btw, why is it you've always been a Earnhardt hater? And is that carried over to Jr because of his name?
You haven't looked very far back in my record.
Hi Ed - Any chance Robbie Rieser will come back to CC for Matt Kenseth?
Don't know that that would help . . .they weren't doing great when Robbie took the big job. And, I think Robbie wants the big job most of all.
In this economy,and hard to find sponsors, will we every see another "Your Car"sponsored by the fans?
As I said earlier, no way. Not enough money, and the people who try those things don't manage very well anyway.
I thought it was funny that people wanted Waltrip to go back and get Hamlin. A Gibbs driver should have done that.
It was a Toyota appeal -- and Waltrip, being a part-timer now, had the least to lose in points, etc.
So Allgier is going to Turner next season, think he will run as good with them next season in Nationwide or will driving inferior equipment when compared to Penske end up hurting his career in the long run? I see him running mid pack in those cars compared to the top 5/10s he usually gets now...
I agree with you. This is not an upward move and probably not even a lateral move. It'll hurt him.
With the lack of sponsors isn't it time to go to 36 car fields? I won't miss any of those last 7 starters.
I'd go along with that. But NASCAR's pride won't let it happen. They'd fear it would be taken as a sign of weakness.
Is Matt Kenseth liking his current crew chief or will he go through 3 more next season?
He won't go through three more next season, but he might go through three more the next three seasons.
Any word yet on harvick's other sponsor or sponsors for the other 16 races next year?
Yeah, I heard something, but am drawing a blank right now on who it is. Will let you know when I think of it.
Does Tony Stewart have a son? ESPN has shown him the last couple of weeks with a little boy.
Doesn't have a son that I know of. Have seen the little boy. Maybe the child of a close friend or something.
Hey Ed, do you see smaller fields in 2011 and will we have a full field for the Daytona 500?
Oh, we'll surely have a full field for the Daytona 500. Everybody wants to make that one. Don't see NASCAR officially going to smaller fields next year, although there might be a few tracks where fewer than 43 cars show up to try to qualify.
Who do you think will win the championship? will it come down to the last lap at Homestead?
I'm sensing Harvick, strong. And no, it won't come to the last lap at Homestead, though Harvick might need to tiptoe through the finale.
Having a bit of a technical glitch here. Some of the more recent questions won't queue. We'll go with earlier ones.
Because there's not enough of them, and because the nature of the sport allows women to compete physically with men.
Do you think NASCAR and IndyCar would ever come together and help each out? Have a IndyCar/NASCAR double header at a track like Texas? Motorsports is hurting in both IndyCar and NASCAR, tough times call for drastic measures. What is going to happen to IndyCar in 2012 ?
Just don't see them getting together like that. Think NASCAR privately figures it's having trouble enough without letting IndyCar pull it down further. Also, IndyCar has too much pride to be a prelim event.
Enjoy watching you on the roundtable, ever thought about doing the preshow? Rusty Wallace should watch his back!
Thanks for the encouragement.
If it comes down at Homestead like it did the year Kulucki won the title by leading just enough laps to get the points to win the title, Who do you give the advantage to, JJ and Chad ?
They're the most astute calculators. But Atlanta '92 was WAAAAAAAAAY more complicated than that. First, points leader Davey Allison was wrecked out early, or none of the other stuff ever would have happened.
Hi Ed, For Petty to take back RPM from Gillette wouldn't he first have to pay down the $90 million Wachovia loan?
Don't know how the leveraging would work, just that Petty is working on the financing and has done this sort of thing before. Evernham seems to be taking serious interest.
Rowdy lost the this Texas race last year because Dave mis-caculated fuel mileage. Do you expect to see Rowdy challenging for the win again Sunday and maybe even pull off all 3 wins?
He should be strong there again. All three? unlikely.
How far away will Jimmie Johnson stay away from Sam Hornish Jr. this weekend?
A long way, if he can.
If Kenseth keeps on going through all these crew chiefs, how come he doenst get all the hatred/criticism that Junior has gotten at HMS and Junior has only switched crew chiefs once in 3 years?
Because he isn't even close to as high a profile as Junior.
does ray gordon reid ever stay in one place very long? he seems to move around more then a wakefield knuckleball
I think Ray Gordon's movements are mainly in his mind and on his keyboard. Anybody can Google a zip code.
Is Jimmie getting tired of everyone saying he shouldn't win the championship this year for the good of the sport? it has to be annoying
real tired of it. he was real tired of it last year. he's really sick of it.
Why is such a big deal made of Kyle winning 3 races in a weekend? If JJ, Gordon, Stewart, etc really wanted to they could have done it years ago.
You're probably right. Us media types just have to ballyhoo something, and so do the nascar publicists.
Are we going to have to endure another season of endless "Kyle Busch is finally mature enough to win a title" articles next season since he didn't win it this season?
maybe. depends on how much of a rise we get out of you anti-kyle folks.
Could F1 fans be lucky enough to get a decade of intense dislike championship racing between McLaren/Hamilton vs Ferrari/Alonso?
A decade? Don't think so. No one or two F1 teams remain technically dominant that long, straight through.
lol funny one. anyways ed, do you see harvick winning the cup, i think he might lose by 15 points, the amount he could have at dega
now that would be interesting, especially within RCR.
What exactly do Harvick and Hamlin need to do in order to break Jimmie's streak? Hope he wrecks?
Just outrun him.
People keep saying Junior needs a new crew chief. What kind of crew chief does he need? someone like a Rogers or maybe a Zippy?
Zippy's the only one with lots of experience at hearing that much complaining.
Hi Ed, nice piece on Hunter. While I fully expect you to be around for many more years, what do you want to be remembered for in terms of NASCAR/racing-related stuff? Also, do you know of any policy or issues he had with NASCAR, or was he generally all in?
Hunter might question some NASCAR policies in his own mind. But he sincerely felt his job was to explain NASCAR policy to the public, once it was made. I do think he had a voice in a lot of NASCAR policy.
Ed, what's your fondest memory of Jim Hunter?
This chat is only an hour, so I couldn't scratch the surface of the fond memories. One funny one was in 1978, after I'd criticized NASCAR heavily for a scoring foulup at Atlanta. Hunter was PR guy at Talladega, a France-owned track. Got a hand written note from him: "Ed: If you ever decide to let all your anti-NASCAR, anti-Daytona prejudices show, I wish you'd let me know. I sure couldn't tell it by Tuesday's column. -- Hunter."
In your opinion, what do you think is wrong with Junior (between the ears)?
Pressing too hard. Getting so frustrated that he can't please his fans bigtime that he's just in sort of a torpor and can't please them at all.
Is Petty planning a hostile takeover of RPM?
That's an interesting way to put it.
In your opinion, can EGR be a contender for the top 5 in points next year between McMurray and Montoya? Also, which one of the two is the number 1 driver there?
I think they can be Chase contenders, and maybe one of them could finish in the top 5. I don't think there's a No. 1 there. I really do think Chip treats them equally.
I always pictured Ray Gordon driving a hauler for a team
Yeah, guess that's a possibility. But if his team's staying at Fort Hood, that's an awful long commute to Fort Worth -- 100 miles plus, I think.
If you were in charge of NASCAR, what would you change to help the sport?
There isn't time or space here to say. But the first thing I'd do is give two years notice that bodystyles would be strictly based on what Detroit produces. If your bodystyle doesn't race well, tough. Find another model to race. I say detroit, but I mean all manufacturers worldwide. I'd welcome any of them.
Do you think that having just five inductees is the right thing for the Hall of Fame considering how far behind they seem to be. People should be alive to enjoy the honor. BTW, the kid with Stewart is CC's son.
I've raised the roof complaining about the too-small classes. I agree with you fully.
Do you think Dale jr would go down in the NASCAR history books as a 2000-2004 flash in the pan?
four years is no flash in the pan. a lot of drivers would take that span as a good career.
I was at that atlanta race in 1992, sitting on what is now the backstretch in the cold shadow listening on the scanner to Alan call his own pit shots. Hcalculated while driving how many laps he needed to get total laps led and did it before pitting. I believe Swervin Irvin blew a tire and took out Allison. Davy was as mad as anyone ever saw him.Those were the days:-)
My recollections are the same. Alan was amazing calling those pit shots, calculating laps, telling them to go buy some Hoosiers during tire wars, etc.
Howdy Mr. Hinton. I'm going a was dwn he line here, but out of drivers who have never made a Chase, who do you think is a darkhorse contender to make it in 2011, McMurray being an obvious choice.
That's the one.
Whats wrong with the 24 team? They haven't won anything in forever.
They just haven't kept up with the competition.
How much would the closing of RPM affect Roush Fenway?
Couldn't help, just that many fewer Fords for R&D, and less equipment to sell RPM when Roush's R
Which do you prefer F1 or NASCAR? Why?
I like them both, for very, very different reasons. I look for totally different things.
Jimmie may be tired of hearing people say he shouldn't win the championship, but at the end of the day, his name is still on the hardware. Give it enough time and people will appreciate what he's done. And this is coming from a Sr fan.
You're absolutely right. 30 years from now all his naysayers will be telling their grandchildren they recognized him as a great, while he was doing it.
24 hasn't won because Jeff's wife has her own money not a gold digger like Brooke.
what does that have to do with winning races?
Who do you think will be the first driver to knock off Dale as the annual popularity contest winner?
doubt anybody ever will. Junior will have to retire before you see another name there.
You still think Gordon can win a race this year? You've been saying he's "gonna win this week" for about 3 months now...
Uh, you most have the wrong columnist. I doubt he'll win this year, but I don't rule it out what with Texas and Phoenix in the mix.
I say let the Sprint guys run all the cup they want>
Huh? You mean Nationwide?
Even with the smoother surface at Talladega and soon at Daytona, do you think NASCAR should eliminate bump drafting in the corners
They've tried, and just can't police it very well.
Do you expect Rowdy to be taking his revenge on Reuitman and his other enemies before the end of the season?
Nah, if he does anything it'll be when it really costs Reutimann, et al.
You know everyone leans on the 88 about how bad they are running but to be honest no one is winning a bunch of races at HMS except the 48. I think HMS as a company is struggling some.
Ed, Im heading out tomorrow for TMS...should i go check out the monkey's selling programs....Huge JR fan...i expect another great run by him,he loves TMS
Yeah, he might lead some laps and have a decent day. I just can't see that they'd put a whole race together, though, even at Texas. That was a different era for him.
Did NASCAR move Champions Week from NYC to Vegas, the hometown of the Busch Brothers as a sign of respect for The Busch Family?
That's it. Bingo.
Well, time's up. Thanks to everyone for stopping by. See y'all next time.