Welcome to a crazy weather day in Charlotte. In the low 70s with tornado watch in the future. Crazy day here too. Just finished All-Star race commercial shoot with Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Richard Petty at Whisky River. Pretty cool seeing them together. On the the questions. Fire away.
Did you Care that Danica & Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Are dating? I know I Sure Don't.
Seriously, no. It is intriguing in a TMZ sort of way. And it is drama that fans seemingly want to read about, so that they're now open about it is a good thing. Otheriwse, it won't impact what happens on the track.
Newt, have you seen the new track drying system and what are your thoughts .
Not yet. I asked NASCAR to describe it and they treated it like some top secret spy document. They'll have 24 of them at Daytona, so I'll be sure to tweet and write all there is to know about it there. If it works, good for everyone.
Which brother has the first meltdown of 2013, Urt or Shrub?
Don't see either. Kurt is happier than I've ever seen him and I'll be writing about that in the near future. Kyle is in a good place too. Don't be surprised if he doesnt' win a lot of races this year in NW and Cup.
Hi David, Im sure you wont post this, but with the DP....RSjr hook up. How would the media handle the story of a driver coming out as Gay. Dont get me wrong there is nothing wrong with it. Your thoughts?
I had that situation come up in the locker room covering the NFL's Carolina Panthers. This is how it should be handled. If the driver wants to talk about it, all good. If he doesn't, then that is his or her business.
Dave its a good article about the normal now a days in Nascar, but you bring up valid points how much are Danica and Ricky really sharing off the track and what if the other one gets mad at the other and puts that person into the wall or gives the other a free pass, whats a risk for the saftey of other drivers. I am pretty sure Kevin would not want Delana on the track with him. I know NASCAR sees no problem with it, but the first time it happens then its going to be see we told you so or then its a "big" story. I know you say it wont and I would like to think it wont but what happens when it does ?
Funny on Kevin and Delana. And do you really think they'll be sharing setups and such? I highly doubt it. Each wants to win races and rookie of the year as much as the other. They won't try to help each other in that way.
I think everybody agrees that the guy who leads the standings going into the Chase should be rewarded with some Chase points. Any chance of it happening this year or are the rules set for the season?
Not this year, the rules are in place. But I've suggested it for years, believing the driver that leads the regular season shouldn't go into the playoffs with a deficit.
Hey David, hope your day is going well. Read through some of the Media Day notes and intrigued by Penske's comments about Newman/Quicken Loans. Do you think he goes after Newman for a 3rd car since Harvick will be at SHR in '14?
No. I was there. Penske simply said he talked to Newman last year before he went with Logano. He made it clear if he goes to a third car in 2014 that Sam Hornish Jr. will have the first crack at it. I believe Sam is ready.
Why is it that no motorsports group, including NASCAR, announces driver contract amounts or race earnings? I think it is the only area of sports that doesn't do that.
Not sure it's the only area of sports, but I agree and I've tried to get those numbers. Maybe I'll make that a project for myself this year. The reason they're so secretive, though, is because driver deals often coincide with sponsor deals and owners are pretty reluctant to let competitors know when deals are going to be up so others can take them away.
With Danica the undisputed Face of NASCAR do you think the sport will attract casual Danica-Dale fans into buying tickets and attending races?
I wouldn't call her the face of NASCAR, just the story of the moment.
Any chance the leadership change at Pocono jeopardizes one or both dates? Before the re-pave and the change from 500 to 400 miles, I would have said good riddance. I have to admit Pocono won me over quite a bit in 2012.
Nope. Everything else stays in place. I've already inquired and they told me status quo. And don't be so hard on the track. The shorter races have been good. And drivers really like the track. It's different. You should go sometimes.
In the media week, you never answered the important question on all our minds. What kind of shoes was Logano wearing?
You're right, I blew that one. I suspect some kind of tennis shoes. I'll go on twitter and ask for you.
Do you think Kyle running 25 NW and 10 truck races for JGR will help the #18 team in the development of their Gen6 program?
No, but I believe it will help make Kyle a better driver. Seriously, he ran in 22 or so NW races a year ago and two truck races. It's not that much different. The big difference is he's under the JGR umbrella again and they are comfortable with him racing in more series. He feels the more he's on the track the better feel for it he gets.
Did Kyle have to beg coach to let him drive the JGR NW cars again to boost his win total?
Nope. Gibbs wanted Busch back under the JGR umbrella. That he got Monster Energy as a sponsor sweetened the pot for the organization.
Since Logano is now the best thing at Penske is this the year he wins the cup?
That would be a stretch, but I do expect him to compete for a Chase spot. He and Brad will work well together.
What's up, David? Heard you are a big fan of my new teammate, Logano. I also heard you loved Danica's expensive high heels. That's cool......(roll eyes)
If I didn't know better I'd say this really is Keselowski. If it is, nice job as a DJ last week.
Leave my high heels alone!
Can't afford them.
I hear the new car will put the race more in the hands of the drivers Who is your top 5 drivers Not best race teams DRIVERS
Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch, Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski, Kurt Busch. Tough leaving Jeff Gordon off this list. I really believe the new car will see a return of his winning ways.
Is Danica racing for Jr's team in Nascar and will she be using Dale's #8?
Nope. She's working on a deal for Turner Motorsports for select races. Google and you'll see that Regan Smith will drive the No. 7, Kasey Kahne and Brad Sweet in the No. 5 car and Jr. for select races in the No. 88.
Does racing luck go in up and down cycles like Rowdy and Edwards had bad luck in '12 and Dale Junebug had good luck? Do you see that cycle being reversed in '13?
It does, and I'm glad to see somebody recognize it. The cars change. The tires change. Some drivers adjust faster than others. Some simply have bad luck, broken parts and such. It's simple, but hard to explain.
Childress said he expect all 3 of his cars to make the chase. Is he serious or is that just talk for the sponsors?
Hey, if you don't believe in your drivers who will? Do I expect all three to make it? No.
When does ESPN NASCAR NOW start the season on ESPN2?
Saw that the other day. I believe the week after next, but don't hold me to it.
Hi David, with Dale Junebug's concussion issues do you think at his age he's physically capable of competing with athletes at the level of Rowdy, Jimmie, Kurt, Kahne, Edwards, Denny etc?
Yes. The concussions no longer are a factor unless possibly he takes another hard hit. But that could be the case for any of the drivers you mentioned.
Which Sprint Cup Series 2013 Rookie will win a race or 2 in 2013?
Stenhouse maybe. That is it.
Which Drivers divorce is more surprising Danica's or Dario Franchitti's?
Not sure I can say surprised by either, but if I had to pick one Dario's.
If HMS Chevy's have an aero advantage with the new body styles will NASCAR make changes to even the playing field so Ford and Toyota can compete?
That will be a consideration if any manufacturer gets an edge, not necessarily an organization.
Have you heard if NASCAR has given clear instructions to Chad Knaus that they don't want any typical Henrick funny business with this Gen 6 car?
Don't think they have to.
Why hasn't an owner stepped up and put AJ in a car for the Sprint Unlimited? Penske should put him in the 2 car being Brad didn't qualify for the race.
That's a thought. Or what about Phoenix Racing since AJ will drive some races for that organization this year.
Hi Newt! If I were an owner, IDK how I would feel about to drivers in the same garage area dating. One would think that sensitive info might get shared.
You're overthinking it.
I'd like to see a NASCAR rule where teams can throw a challenge flag like in the NFL when NASCAR makes bad calls on restarts, pit lane speeding, missing oil on the track etc. Your thoughts?
Kind of like it in a strange kind of way. Might slow the races down, though, and don't like that.
Is there any word as to if Harvick is bringing Bud, JJ and Rheem to SHR. I'll be pretty ticked after all the Bud swag I've accumulated.
You can look at it two ways. My first inclination is to say yes, Bud will go. My second is to say wouldn't a young driver like Austin Dillon fit Bud's demographics better? That Childress says Bud hasn't given him any indication tells me the sponsor likely is moving on.
Since Daytona is a crap shoot you think Danica could pull off a lucky win like Bayne did a few years ago?
Not so much the crapshoot it was when there were two-car tamdems. Although I still won't be surprised if drivers figure out how to make that work. I just feel the craziness of Daytona will get to her before she gets to the finish.
If Rowdy and Edwards make the '13 Chase are Harvick and Truex the odd men out?
Hmmm. Good question. Not bad choices, but as we've seen in the past this is tough to predict.
with nascar prohibiting penske from controlling efi via smartphone technology like #2 did in '12 do you think we have seen the end of fuel economy runs?
Seriously, do you think Brad K won the title because of his smartphone. I think they just outsmarted everybody. If a smartphone did all that don't you think Hendrick teams would have figured it out and used it.
Does JGR entering Rowdy's #54 Monster Camry in 25 NW races plus providing TRD motors mean that Rowdy has merged KBM with JGR?
It's definitely a part of the family like SHR is with Hendrick.
Penske was successful as basically a 1 car team in '12 so do you think Kurt's @FR78racing 1 car team can have similar success?
First, don't underestimate the contributions Busch made at Penske before he left following the 2011 season. That helped Penske and Brad get in a position to win the title. Second, Busch's Furniture Row team basically is a fourth RCR team, so yes they can be successful.
Hey Newt, how does Kyle get M&M's and Interstate to re-up but Dale's #88 only has partial sponsorship?
It's not that simple. Mr H has several sponsors out there that want to get on the car. He's just trying to nail one down that will be with the team for beyond 2013. It's not like sponsors are saying they don't want to be on the car. There just are a lot of things that have to be worked through. Plus, you can bet HMS will want to get the most money it can.
Does NASCAR test for PED's used in concussion recovery like in the NFL?
I'll have to check, but pretty sure the list of banned substances is about the same as the NFL, and PED is on that.
@KyleBusch tweeted that he's going to NO for the Superbowl. Any other NASCAR peeps we might expect to see interviewed?
I suspect Brad K will get there. He's a huge Ray Lewis fan. Kevin Harvick has gone in the past as a guest of Budweiser.
Howdy Dave, I liked your western picture. But you need a red bandana or something. I was sorry to hear about the split between Dario and Ashley.
Will work on the bandana. And it's sad anytime two people break up.
What's your take on the Sprint Unlimited? Good idea leaving it to the fans to decide segment length, pit stops and eliminations? I do like the idea of the "old" Shootout eligibility though.
Not a fan of this elimination thing. Just line them up and let them race. Don't get too gimmicky.
David,Give me a reason to believe in Jamie McMurray and JPM this season. Will the Hendrick engines really make a difference, or is their problem still going to persist because of the people building/refining/tuning their cars?
The engines can't hurt. Might help if they buy some of Hendrick's engineering help. Let's just say this, McMurray and JPM are not on my list to make the Chase.
What is the thing to look forward to the most this season?
The new car and better racing. Fingers crossed.
Howdy David!! Which two drivers are the most unapproachable ... as in you dread having to interview?
I won't say Stewart even though he called me an idiot during the media tour. I actually like not knowing what is going to come from him. Kurt Busch has been that way, but I believe he will be better this year. Same for Kyle. Was quite impressed with him on media day.
When do you think Danica part time nationwide series schedule will be announced?
Pretty soon I'm sure. I need to check on that. Other stuff related to her has kept us busy lately.
Why do you answer dumb questions from Busch Brothers haters?
I'm an equal opportunity moderator.
Hi David. Nice to have you chatting again. In your opinion, who will have a better year at HMS: Jr. or Kahne?
I'll go with Junior but it will be very close. I'd say by a hair, but don't want Kasey to think I'm picking on his haircut again.
Newt, let's cut to the chase: What's your Super Bowl pick other than J. Harbaugh?
San Francisco. I'm an NFC guy.
I know it's gotten really old predicting this year will be Dale's year but is '13 Dale's year to finally win it all?
Talked to Ray Evernham at the All-Star commercial stood today on Junior's property and he said it could be.
Huge Kyle Petty fan. Do you think we will see Kyle run the #43 for the king anytime soon?
Nope. His time has come and gone.
David, Can the Ganassi drivers get back to being competitive with just the change from ECR engines to Hendrick engines? It sure seemed like most of their issues last season were with the ability to drive the car, not so much with a lack of power. What are your thoughts?
Hard to blame it on ability to drive. McMurray has won a Daytona 500 and Brickyard 400. JPM is one of the best drivers on the planet as we saw in the Rolex 24. He should have won at least one Brickyard race. Seriously, a lot goes into this and the stars all have to line up from pit crew to engines to chassis to driver.
I think DP & RS are professionals and won't bring their personal life on track. I think DP will win MPD and RS will win ROTY. Ricky will likely contend for a win here and there and with the exception of Daytona/Talladega Danica will largely be 15th-20th most weeks. Fair assessment?
I agree with much of what you say, except I don't see Danica beating out Dale Jr for most popular driver. If she does I will ... well, let me think about what I will do and get back to you.
what's up with the commercial with Dale Jr and Richard Petty, it looks like from the pic you tweeted it'll be a western theme, is that true and is it at Whiskey River again?
Yep, real shoot 'em up commercial. It's for the All-Star race in May. Pretty cool Dale opened up his place for the shot. I'll have a column posted on that and more shortly after the chat is done.
Do you think we'll see a Sonoma or Watkins Glen race in the Chase next year? I certainly hope so.
Skeptical, but hopefull. Not sure NASCAR is willing to take that big of a leap yet.
I think there should be a trophy for leading the regular season in points. Similar to the Presidents Trophy in the NHL.
That works too, but still like points.
It sure sounds like Rowdy and Kenseth are happy to be working together at Gibbs. Is Denny the odd man out?
They're all three happy working together. And be sure to read my Friday column on Kenseth and Brian Vickers being teammates. It shapes up to be a hoot if I don't mess it up.
Rowdy said he had contract offers from 2 teams other than Gibbs. Penske and SHR?
My guess, and I don't know for sure, is either Penske, SHR or RCR, with the latter two maybe my favs.
reading Mr Blount's story about how NASCAR wants to get teams involved with people like Pastrana, doesn't this have a real shot of backfiring. They could lose the already paying customers (as they have for the last 6-7 years) who feel unloved while not gaining people in a generation into video games and cell phones who feel watching cars turn left for 3 hours is boring
Nah. I like Pastrana and what he could do for the sport. The key here is he's not in it to be a spectacle. He's here to win races and compete for a title. I have an indepth column coming on him, I believe on Feb. 11th.
Why did Tony Stewart call you an idiot?
Well, he was talking about how black made him look slimmer, so I said since you are talking fashion what do you think of Danica's shoes that apparently cost more than $1,000.
Please tell us about the All-Star commercial.
Glad you asked. A Western theme filmed in Dale Jr's Whisky River Western town on his property. You'll see Denny Hamlin, Clint Bowyer, Ray Evernham, Richard Petty and Jeff Hammond. Since Dale Jr is guaranteed a spot this year he agreed to be featured in it. Pretty good stuff. Be sure to read my column when it's posted later in the day.
Hello David, Thanks for the chat. Has there been any news as to Landon Cassill's plans for 2013???? It's a shame to see driver talent like that on the sidelines.
None yet. Getting kind of late in the game.
Did Goodyear have to change tire compounds to pair with the Gen-6 cars?
They adjusted. With 150 pounds out of the car they can soften up the compound without fear of the weight of the car blowing tires as much.
Do you think Stenhouse will ruffle feathers and make enemies like Brad K did in his first years in NASCAR?
Ummmmm. Not to that extent. And I didn't see anything wrong with the way Brad K raced then.
it seems like the drivers are now cautioning not to expect too much difference from the Gen6 vs. COT after all the initial talk. Thoughts?
Think they are just trying to keep expectations realistic. There still are a lot of things we don't know.
Well, folks, that is all the time I have for today. Thanks for all the questions. Be sure to read my column that will be posted soon on Dale Jr and the shooting of the All-Star commercial. He talks about DP as well. You'll life the pictures even if you don't like the column. Have a great rest of the week.