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September 28, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with David Newton

David Newton
  (12:00 PM)

Welcome to a special noon chat while I wrap up a little R&R in Seattle before heading to Dover. Let's get right to it.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

Who will drive the #33 Chevrolet for Richard Childress if Clint Bowyer signs with Michael Waltrip Racing?

David Newton
  (12:02 PM)

A couple of options. One is to drop that team down to Nationwide and put Austin Dillon in it. The other is if JTG Daugherty Racing were to form an alliance with RCR, although I doubt they would use the No. 33 since they already have a number with Labonte. The other is to sign another driver, maybe Brian Vickers or somebody else, and put that person in the car. They're working hard to resolve.

chris yoder (reedsville pa)

hey david do any drivers read your chat that u no of an what r gordon changes this weekend thanks

David Newton
  (12:03 PM)

Never have asked the drivers if they read the chat. I doubt they work that into their schedules, though. AS for Gordon, that team should be strong at every track from here on out.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

When will we see a Woman winning a Sprint Cup Series Race or a Nationwide Series Race?

David Newton
  (12:03 PM)

Not this year.

Rich (NYC) [via mobile]

Hey Newt! Where would you rate Dover racing-wise out of the Chase tracks?

David Newton
  (12:04 PM)

I like it. It's different and a fun track. I'd put it behind Martinsville, Talladega and Phoenix.

Logan (MA)

Do u think Jeff Gordon still has ths momentum to win the Cup? Chicago hurt but NH was a solid run.

David Newton
  (12:04 PM)

Yeah, I think it's too early to rule anybody out other than maybe Denny Hamlin, who is toast. I still see the 48 making a run.

nascar fan (fl)

after last week how is the 24's chances for a chase championship now.

David Newton
  (12:05 PM)

Wow, lots of Jeff Gordon questions. As I said before the Chase I believe that team is strong enough to win the title. I don't think that has changed by one run influenced by fuel mileage.

Chris (Crestview, FL)

Are you disappointed by anything in the new schedule?

David Newton
  (12:05 PM)

Only that NASCAR hasn't taken any risks and shaken up the Chase tracks.

Chad (Illinois)

Any updates on who will split time with Danica at SHR next season? Would she be better off with Tony Eury Jr. as her crew chief at both the NW and Cup level or does SHR have somebody else lined up for her?

David Newton
  (12:07 PM)

No updates other than Stewart has said he'd like to get Mark Martin. It makes sense, putting a veteran she already has a relationship with in that ride. As for Eury Jr., Danica feels comfortable with him and trusts him and that will be important moving forward.

Dylan (Rozeboom)

Why does nascar have to add a bigger restrictor plate just because the drafting at Talladega and Daytona are fast and the qualifying is slower

David Newton
  (12:07 PM)

The theory is that if you speed the cars up it'll make handling tougher and therefore make it tougher for the cars to lock up in the two-car draft.

Jason (FL)

Who do you consider the favorites for this weekend's race?

David Newton
  (12:08 PM)

The usual suspects, Johnson, Gordon, the Busch brothers ... and don't forget the ever so hot Brad Keselowski.

Sam (UT)

I think i see a JJ max points comeback day coming this sunday. What do you think?

David Newton
  (12:10 PM)

Totally agree. He's strong at Dover and that team usually responds to adversity.

Chad (Illinois)

What is the latest news with Red Bull Racing, aside from them closing the shop and laying off employees? Are there investors lined up at all? Where can we expect Vickers to land next season?

David Newton
  (12:11 PM)

They're still searching. I'm told they have some new people coming to the table. Vickers tried to line up investors and get Red Bull to back him, but no dice. As for where Vickers will land I know he's on the list at RCR but otherwise his options aren't great.

Sam (UT)

What did the 22 get in trouble for pre race tech?

David Newton
  (12:11 PM)

NASCAR had a problem with the guages.

Chris Currie (Manchester, NH)

What could possibly explain the collapse of the #11 FedEx team in 2011 vs. 2010?

David Newton
  (12:12 PM)

If you look at recent history the runner-up in the Chase has followed with a bad year. A lot has to do with bad luck, parts breaking and getting caught up in somebody else's wrecks. There also is a difference in handling with the tweaks made to the front end and that apparently has thrown them off.

Hank (Asheville)

Is Clint Bowyer leaving RCR for MWR? With this dragging on what are the chances he is staying at RCR.

David Newton
  (12:13 PM)

I do believe he'll wind up at MWR, but I also believe he may be dragging his feet hoping Childress can come up with something at the 11th hour. Something should be announced real soon.

Kevin Harvick (Dover)

I think I?m sitting pretty right now Tony can?t keep that streak going mainly because Chad?s going to start crying that Tony?s getting better engines and Rick will put a stop to that. Brad doesn?t have the experience. So I?m just lying in wait so when the time is right I?ll be there to claim the championship and put RCR back on top were we belong. I know before you say ?what about the other 8 drivers? exactly what about ?em. So what do ya think? On a serious note I wish Matt Kenseth?s wife a speedy recovery.

David Newton
  (12:14 PM)

Don't forget the 48. And agreed on Kenseth's wife. Scary deal.

Chris (Hudson, NC)

I still stand by Gordon with 5 wins and the title. What do you think?

David Newton
  (12:15 PM)

If he can get to five wins that'll put him in contention.

David (DE)

I have tickets for Nationwide race. Can I also use it to go watch the Sprint Cup qualifying?

David Newton
  (12:15 PM)

Should be good for everything on Saturday. Enjoy. Don't lose too much in the casino.

Hans Stuck (Rotterdam)

What is the possibility of NASCAR running more road course races? I think Road America would be a great venue.

David Newton
  (12:16 PM)

I'm with you, but NASCAR doesn't agree with us.

Baseballman387 (MD)

Do you think the new fuel injectors will effect any races, like the past two Chase races have been fuel mileage? What are the differences between the current fuel injectors and the new ones?

David Newton
  (12:18 PM)

Still to be determined on how fuel injection will impact races. It's not all about fuel mileage. It's about teams stretching runs to the very end and having the ability to stay on old tires longer without losing much speed.

Tim (San Francisco)

Hi David - I know everyone is sick of hearing of this Bowyer deal but there is something I don't understand. If he has 5 hour energy in his back pocket why doesn't he take them to Penske or JGR? MWR is clearly an inferior organization even if they are taking some steps in the right direction. What's the story??

David Newton
  (12:19 PM)

First, 5-hour isn't for the full season. Not quite half I believe, so wherever he looks the organization has to fill in the rest. And Bowyer has talked to JGR. Don't think Penske is looking to expand.

Jessica Zemken (NJ)

Smoke broke my heart! :"(

David Newton
  (12:19 PM)

Dead weight?

Kenneth (North Carolina)

David is there any truth to Logano being let go after 2011? Also rumors are that Zippy is going back with Stewart. Any news?

David Newton
  (12:21 PM)

I don't see Logano being let go. Too much invested. As for Zippy, I believe he still has a year or two left on his deal JGR so any move would be up to them. Hard to argue that Stewart needs a new crew chief the way he's running right now.

Rick Hendrick (NC)

Man, I have to stop giving Tony Stewart some of my best equipment.

David Newton
  (12:21 PM)

You'd think Junior would get it.

Wade (Florida)

David, Kurt Busch is about 28 points back, after a 4th, 5th, 6th and 22nd. How and where do you see him rebounding?

David Newton
  (12:24 PM)

First, he's that far back after the last two finishes since they reset the points. As for rebounding, not sure that is how I would describe what he needs. He just needs to avoid finishes like the last one. Consistency wins.

Jerame (Cali)

Hey Dave!! It's been awhile. how have you been? Same Question different week, Who's your top five and where will JR finish?

David Newton
  (12:25 PM)

Glad you're back. Go with Johnson, Gordon, Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski and surprise pick, Martin Truex Jr. Dale Jr. will be top 15.

K. Lee Davis (Bristol, CT)

Check out this from fine effort from Mr. Newton being posted RIGHT NOW!!! http://espn.go.com/racing/nascar/cup/story/_/id/7030485/nascar-brad-keselowski-attitude-sponsor-himself

David Newton
  (12:26 PM)

Thanks bossman.

Bonqueeza (Donalsonville GA)

What team that's not in the chase do you think has the best chance to win this weekend ?

David Newton
  (12:27 PM)

As I just posted with my top five, I like Martin Truex Jr. That team is getting it all together.

Rod (KY)

Do you think when the Dillion's come to the cup side Harvick will be yesterday's news in Richards eye's?

David Newton
  (12:27 PM)

It'll be a while before either Dillon is that good.

Kenneth (North Carolina)

Are you sold on the 2 car being a legit championship driver? I mean he has had alot of luck this year with things turning out his way with cautions and fuel mileage..........not alot of speed, kinda like Stewart

David Newton
  (12:28 PM)

Definitely sold on that one. It's not all luck. It's about being smart and having a driver that is as talented as there is out there.

Don Juan (TX)

Any truth to the rumor that Robby Gordon is gonna be in the 4th Gibbs car next year?

David Newton
  (12:28 PM)

NO.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

With the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Schedule Released, What Races will Danica Patrick will race in the Sprint Cup Seriies in 2012?

David Newton
  (12:30 PM)

Other than Daytona they're keeping it under hat. I suspect Phoenix will be in there. She really wants to run the 600. They just want to play the PR game and announce it in pieces like they have in the past with the NW schedule.

Jerry Meister (Missouri)

Do you think the new points format will make a difference in the long run for the chase? Will it be tighter at the end, or will someone have it basically wrapped up by Phoenix?

David Newton
  (12:30 PM)

I do because bad finishes like the one Hamlin had to start the Chase will kill you more than they did under the old system. And no, I don't see anyone wrapping it up by Phoenix.

Alex (School)

Hey David, what word did Kurt bUsch get in trouble for saying???

David Newton
  (12:31 PM)

I can't say it on here but it started with a letter in the alphabet between E and G.

Baseballman387 (MD)

Any good events or stuff like that going on before the Sprint Cup race around Dover track?

David Newton
  (12:32 PM)

I'm sure there are, but I'm usually too busy inside the garage to enjoy them. Suspect you'll find a lot of activity inside Dover Downs hotel.

mike (louisville)

Did Kurt get docked any points from NASCAR and do you see JR winning any races during the remainder of the chase?

David Newton
  (12:34 PM)

I"ve been off a few days, but haven't seen any announcement on a Kurt fine. I don't think it'll happen if it hasn't already. As for Junior, I've been saying he will win a race from Day One. There are only eight more days left, so I'm skeptical. Maybae Talladega.

Sam (UT)

I think Nascar needs more short track racing, the mile and a half races get a little tiring when its just 2 or 3 duking it out. What do you think?

David Newton
  (12:35 PM)

Totally agree. Would love to see Iowa get on the schedule and somebody build another Richmond in the Northwest.

Stan (Detroit MI)

Why doesn't Chevrolet use the Camaro in Nationwide?

David Newton
  (12:36 PM)

I"ve asked the same question. Their reason is they're happy marketing the car they have. The camaro sells fine without the benefit of being in the series, so they want to help another product.

Alan (Columbus, Ohio)

Hi David! What is the best Chase track, the worst Chase track, and the track that should be added to the Chase?

David Newton
  (12:37 PM)

Just my opinion, but the best is Martinsville and the worst is one of the 1.5-milers, maybe Chicagoland. I've always believed Darlington should be in the Chase. You need your toughest venue to decide a champion.

mike (louisville)

What are juniors chances that he wins a chase race this year?

David Newton
  (12:37 PM)

One in eight.

Alan (Columbus, Ohio)

Hi David! If you are a solid 6th in points going into Talladega, what is your strategy for getting through the race with a solid points day?

David Newton
  (12:38 PM)

Find a good drafting partner if that still is in play with the rule change and hang on. Really, it's a crapshoot. Some hang back till the end and others believe staying up front is the key. Both have worked.

Michael (Edinboro University of Pennsylvania)

I know we all have our favorite drivers who we prefer to root for, but I'm rooting for Matt's wife to make a speedy recovery. I think she should be included in everyone's thoughts and prayers that are NASCAR fans.

David Newton
  (12:39 PM)

I'm with you. Thanks.

Kenneth (North Carolina)

Is ESPN under a gag order from Nascar to not say anything or answer any question that may question the "integrity" of the sport? I say 100 per cent yes!

David Newton
  (12:39 PM)

No gag here, and I haven't seen a memo with one.

Cletus (Apex, NC)

Jr tied for 6th but listed in 8th due to wins used as a tiebreaker, doesnt this new point system create the chance that the point lead for the Champion this year could actually be 0?

David Newton
  (12:40 PM)

It was the same way under the old system. That part hasn't changed.

Rico (New Orleans)

If Dale Jr was anyone else, he'd be driving in the Truck series, not signing new contracts

David Newton
  (12:41 PM)

People forget he's won 18 Cup races and has finished in the top 5 in points. So I guess I'm disagreeing.

Tyrone (Illinois)

Do you think Ron Hornaday will find a new ride?

David Newton
  (12:41 PM)

It would be a shame if he doesn't. Haven't heard anything, though.

Alan (Columbus, Ohio)

Hi David! What's the weather report for this weekend? Hopefully it's 90 and extremely sunny for your sake and for the sake of Kyle who does not seem to run well when there is subtantial moisture and cloud cover.

David Newton
  (12:42 PM)

I'd take 80 with low humidity. Honestly, I've been on the west coast since last Thursday and haven't looked at the weather forecast. It's a lovely 66 in Seattle today.

Michael (Edinboro University of Pennsylvania)

Are any tracks that currently don't have a Cup date looking to get one and if they get one what tracks to you see losing a Cup date to make room?

David Newton
  (12:43 PM)

Iowa is at the top of the list. Where a date would come from is tough to say. I'd take one from Michigan or maybe do away with California all together. Others would say Pocono, but NASCAR is married to keeping two there.

Aaron (Buffalo, NY)

Two quickies:1. If an SHR team won the title, would Hendrick benefit in any way financially (since they supply equipment)?2. Do you think Rick would actually support the notion of Smoke winning another title? I know he holds Tony in fairly high regard (I'll always remember his 2009 N-wide win in the 80 car).

David Newton
  (12:45 PM)

No real financial gaine for Hendrick of Tony or Newman win the title, and Rick would be one of the first to congratulate Smoke if he won it all. He thinks a lot of Tony as we saw at a press conference promoting Stewart's charity race at Eldora.

Dave (Colorado)

Do you think Jimmie and Chad hugged it out after the last last race or is there some tension? Jimmie didn't sound too receptive to Chad's radio chatter.

David Newton
  (12:46 PM)

It was just chatter. They've gone at it before like that. I look for them to bounce back stronger than ever this week.

Davis (Boca)

how come kurt usch wasnt points penalized for his NH infractions

David Newton
  (12:47 PM)

It wasn't considered an infraction that deserved a penalty. NASCAR found something they wanted adjusted and that was done. It wasn't a height tolerance or something like that which typically is penalized.

Shane (PA)

Do you AJ Allmendinger has a shot to win at Dover? He was really good and was up at the front in the 1st Dover race before his engine soured. Do you think we'll see the 43 back in victory lane this weekend?

David Newton
  (12:47 PM)

He did have a nice run last time out there, but it'll be tough to beat out a Chase driver here.

Alan (Columbus, Ohio)

Hi David! Is there a way to listen to any driver's radio chatter via mobile phone or internet? The only way I know is through Sirius (which I have, but they don't always have the drivers I want).

David Newton
  (12:48 PM)

You can on the net, but it's with a rival dot.com site.

Sam (UT)

I think the field should be sacred, that the 48 is pissed.

David Newton
  (12:49 PM)

They always should be worried about the 48, but you're right particularly when JJ faces adversity.

Johnny (New York)

Newt -- Didn't Chicago have lights last year??? If so, why not start the chase on primetime under the lights? We ended-up with a weekday race that nobody saw. I read your article about not wanting a shortened start to the playoff, but what a miserable alternative...nobody with a job can see one of the most interesting races of the year. Maybe run on Monday night...something to flip between on MNF commercials? Not sure...weekday races don't do anything for the working fan...

David Newton
  (12:50 PM)

They do have lights there, and there were many drivers who thought it was a Saturday night race still. Shows how much they look at the schedule. I agree a primetime race under the lights would spice up the start of the Chase. Not sure why the governing body opted not to, other than a conflict with the NFL that could hurt ratings.

Rick (Phoenix)

Will we see NASCAR change the front end to be more like the Nationwide series with coil bound springs instead of bump stops and are we going to see a totally new car in 2013.

David Newton
  (12:51 PM)

We will see a totally new car in 2013 and they are headed more in the direction of the NW car, although they still want to keep the cars different enough that there are distinctions.

Tank (Home)

Nut -- Whatsup??? I went to recnt race...not one Jonson shirt at the whole trak!! Not One! I wanna to be his publicist PR person...because no matter how bad he'she is at his'her job they can't be fired. Five time champ and they cants build up suppot? Really???

David Newton
  (12:52 PM)

Think I'm following your train of thought, Tank. Want me to set you up with a job interview?

Sam (UT)

I think bristol should be the opening race to the chase. Thoughts?

David Newton
  (12:52 PM)

Love that idea and have suggested it as well. Put it under the lights and have at it.

Jared (Ga)

So what happens if KyBu and Harvick are tied at the end of the year?

David Newton
  (12:53 PM)

Goes first to the driver with the most wins.

KC (NC)

whats the "real deal" behind the KHI sell off?

David Newton
  (12:53 PM)

Not sure we truly know everything behind this, but bottom line is it just wasn't worth the cost versus the reward.

Tyler (Minnesota )

How is Ernie?

David Newton
  (12:54 PM)

He's a new dog after three weeks with the Dog Wizard. Manger management a success. Thanks for asking.

ray (alabama)

which athlete would you mind seeing in the ESPN body issue?

David Newton
  (12:55 PM)

Not mine.

Keith H (Seattle)

David, welcome to the neighborhood. Please don't keep telling everyone how nice it is here. It's crowded enough. Remember, the gray season with clouds and drizzle will be here soon and then everybody gets depressed until July 5.

David Newton
  (12:56 PM)

Yeah, I came expected to see more rain. Plan a big day on the town for my b-day today before catching the red-eye to Charlotte and then heading to Dover. Any last-minute restaurant recommendations?

Tank (Home)

can we get a hint on da 2d letter of Kurt Buash's wurd?

David Newton
  (12:56 PM)

Think I already did that.

KC (NC)

Is Bayne out of a ride next year?

David Newton
  (12:56 PM)

He'll still be in the 21 parttime for the Wood Brothers in Cup. NW still to be determined. The Roush program is in a bit of sponsor trouble.

Shane (PA)

Do you think the Chase would be more interesting if they inserted a road course? (Infineon, maybe Watkins Glen or even Road America.)

David Newton
  (12:57 PM)

I do. Think to have a true champion he needs to be tested at all kinds of tracks.

KC (NC)

In this era of fuel mileage races, why couldn't a start and park win a race like that?

David Newton
  (12:58 PM)

Because they park too early to be a factor in fuel mileage. But I get your point. Even if they did play the fuel game most of those teams aren't strong enough to be on the lead lap necessary to play.

Rick (Phoenix)

With the new racing surface and design for PIR do you think that the racing is going to be better than it already is and who do think might have an advantage going in with out a lot of notes.

David Newton
  (12:59 PM)

Can't say better, but it'll definitely throw a wild card factor into that race. Most of the teams are getting a chance to test there, so I'm not sure who will have a huge advantage.

Bob (Chalfont, PA)

Heading to the race on Sunday - forecast calls for partly sunny skies and highs in the mid 60's. What is the deal between Matt and Carl. Carl seems to be a bug in his side. Works for me. Go 24!

David Newton
  (1:00 PM)

Love that weather forecast. Thanks. As for Matt and Carl, they've had a bit of a rub between them since Martinsville a few years ago when Carl did the fake punch deal after the race.

KC (NC)

Will VIR ever get a Cup race? Thats a very nice track and alot closer for Nascar teams.

David Newton
  (1:00 PM)

Beautiful track and area, but I doubt it.

David Newton
  (1:01 PM)

That's it for me. Thanks for tuning in early and asking great questions. See you at Dover.