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httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iZy-tPkZ3W4&feature=player_embedded Indycar driver Mike Conway suffered a horrific crash at the 2010 Indy 500. Just this week, Mike finally had his leg cast removed. He is still undergoing massive rehabilitation which includes time in a  Kriotherapy rehabilitation chamber. The Kriotherapy chamber exposes to Mike temperatures as low as -130 degrees for up to 4 minutes at a time. This treatment speeds up the healing process of the bones in his left leg by creating a flushing effect (vasodilatation and constriction of the blood vessels) which helps to remove the waste products at the site of the injury, whilst also supplying the vital nutrients for the healing process.  He also spent time in a single seater racing simulator.  Mike expects to be in an actual race car later this year.

Motorsports Books

July 24th, 2010

Neal Parker

Neal Parker

Top Alcohol Funny Car driver Neal Parker, 58, of Millville, N.J., died from a crash at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Old Bridge, New Jersey. Parker ran through a containment area at the end of a track and died of head injuries after crashing his alcohol-fueled funny car at a “high rate of speed” during a qualifying round at the NHRA SuperNationals at a New Jersey raceway Friday, according to state police. 
 A statement by NHRA released today: “On behalf of everyone at NHRA and Raceway Park, we are deeply saddened and want to pass along our sincere condolences to the entire Parker family.”

The car ran through a containment area with soft barriers, sand and a safety net and wound up in pieces in front of a wall at the edge of the raceway property. State police declined to comment on whether the car hit the wall or on eyewitness accounts that a drogue chute designed to slow the car failed to deploy properly.
 This accident is nearly two years after Scott Kalitta died when his Funny Car burst into flames and crashed at the end of the same track.

Danica and the Rookies

March 13th, 2010

James Buescher in Nationwide Rookie Lead

Points Position  Name    Starts   Finish: Daytona   California  Las Vegas
11 James Buescher 3 8 13 29
17 Brian Scott   3 19   10   31
26 Colin Braun   3 34   18   28
34 Danica Patrick   3 35   31   36
36 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  3 36   39   30
38 Parker Kligerman  2 dns   22   35
57 Chrissy Wallace   1 43   dns   dns

Brian Scott in Nationwide eriesThere are five drivers running for the Raybestos Rookie of the year in the Nationwide Series. After the first three races and since Danica is only a part-time stock car driver and Full time Indycar driver & swimsuit model we thought right now is the time to compare statistics for rookies in the first three races of the season.

Colin Braun in Nationwide (formerly Busch Series)Both James Buescher and Brian Scott have scored Top Tens. Parker Kligerman did not start the race at Daytona due to qualifying being rained out. Chrissy Wallace and Danica Patrick are running limited schedules (hence the did not starts for Chrissy) and neither will be running for Rookie of the year.
One Rookie note is this is the first time a rookie has not scored a top-10 finish in the last four consecutive Nationwide Series races at Las Vegas. Last year four rookies finished in the top 10:  Michael McDowell, 6th; Brendan Gaughan, 7th;
Justin Allgaier, 8th; Scott Lagasse Jr., 9th.Danica Patrick, Godaddy Girl
In the Rookie stats Danica is fourth. Below many peoples expectations and on par for others but what did you expect? Her highest finish was 31st at California. Every other rookies has a higher finish than her except Chrissy Wallace who has only one start.
Another comparison is the teams. James Buescher is driving the #1 car for Phoenix Racing owned by James Finch, in a basically unponsored car. Phoenix Racing owned the car Brad Keselowski won with at Talledage last year. This year is Cup competition they have struggled to qualify for races with Aric Almirola as driver.
Brian Scott drives the #11 for Braun Racing. Braun competes only in the Nationwide series although it at times has shared  connections to Sprint Cup teams as it has been a part of driver development programs.
Colin Braun, a Raybestos Rookie-of-the-Year in the NASCAR Camping World Truck series, is in the #16 for Roush Fenway Racing. It should be noted Colin has six previous starts (7 or less starts in a season keeps you qualified for Rookie of the year) in two seasons where he earned two poles and a top five finish. Jack Roush and Roush Fenway Racing is well knowned in NASCAR. Since 1988 it has earned Championships in all three of NASCAR’s top series. They have competed not only in NASCAR but drag racing and sports cars. Anyone remember Tommy Kendall’s 12 SCCA Trans-Am wins in 1995? That was a Roush Ford.
Ricky Stenhouse in NASCAR Nationwide SeriesDanica Patrick is driving the #7 car for JR Motorsports which is “in partnership” with Hendrick Motorspors. JR Motorsports is co-owned by Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Rick Hendrick. Hendrick Motorsports competes in all three of NASCAR’s top series. They have earned nine Sprint Cup, one Nationwide (driver only) and three Camping World Truck Series championships. They have 188 wins in Sprint Cup competition, 29 in Nationwide/Busch and 25 in the truck series. They build and supply engines and chassis for many other top teams.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. drives the #6 car for Roush Fenway Racing. See above for details.
Parker Kligerman in NASCAR Nationwide SeriesParker Kligerman is a Penske Racing development driver driving the #42 car for Team 42 Racing, formerly known as Smith-Ganassi Racing. Because of sponsorship issues he is not set to compete in the entire season. The sponsor of his car Smith Iroworks is a company owned by team owner Eddie Smith. It is unknown how much involvement Penske has with the #42 car. Penske racing competes currently not only in NASCAR but in Indycar as well. They Crissy Wallace in Nationwide Serieshave had no NASCAR championships but have earned them in Indycar, CART and USAC. They also have on the Indianapolis 500 fifteen times. Did you know that the first car in NASCAR from Penske was an AMC Matador? Some may ask, “What’s a Matador?” Justin Allgaier won the 2009 Rookie of the year in a Penske Racing car.
 Next week is Bristol. Danica Patrick and Chrissy Wallace will not be at that race. The remaining Rokkies will battle it out short track style. Should be a good one!

The Carl & Brad Show

March 10th, 2010

Sunday at Atlanta, Carl Edwards bumped Brad Keselowski. The end result was Brad’s #12 Penske car flipped end over end. At the beginning of the season NASCAR told drivers they would let them sort out their differences. But people asked after the race is this different because of the severity of the wreck? Carl admitted he took Brad out but denied he wanted to make his car flip.
Everyone watching the race could see even the previous lap Carl made an attempt.
 Race car drivers, whether NASCAR Sprint Cup or at the local short track, have a different attitude than the general public do. On the track adrenaline is coming out their ears. Then when another driver bumps into them sending them into the wall or another car ruining their race all they can think about is payback. That was what Carl Edwards was thinking about after being taken out by Brad Keselowski early in the race. He returned 153 laps down. What else was there to do?
 This depends on the person. There are some that would never do this. Mark Martin has been racing in NASCAR for over 25 years but when is the last time he took out another driver who took him out? I myself can say regardless of what was done to me I never used my race car to take them out. Because I worked on my own cars. Paid the expenses. Begged for sponsorship money. Today many of these drivers have never tightened a bolt on these cars. They will thank “The guys in the shop” but then cause hours or days of work for them just to get a little revenge. Plus add thousands of dollars of expenses to their owners. There are better ways of getting back at other drivers. (Email me privately for what works!) And anyone who has driven for me will attest that if there was an incident on the track, I immediatly was on the radio calming them down.
 Having said that, I do not put a lot of fault in Carl’s actions. NASCAR also felt that way. They suspended him for a mere three races. NASCAR was in a hard place. After saying the drivers could handle things themselves, if they imposed a hefty fine and took away a hundred points, then they went back on their word. I do not believe Carl inteneded to get Brad’s car airborne. This was caused most likely by the stupid rear wing and aerodynamics of the car when it was backwards. It will be fixed in a couple of weeks when NASCAR replaces the wing with the spoiler. So that is in part NASCAR’s fault for not making the change earlier. Carl did not know that what happen because NASCAR did not know. NASCAR looked at Brad’s car after the race and will be testing another car to see why it got airborne. 
  There are other drivers who either publicly or privately have stated they agree with Carl’s actions. Many have said Brad had it coming from his driving style. Indeed last year Denny Hamlin took out Keselowski at the Nationwide race at Homestead last year. Payback for an earlier incident. So while Carl Edwards is on probation, we might yet see another driver involved with Brad. Then again we will have to see if NASCAR lets the drivers sort it out themselves. Keep watching!

A NASCAR Legend Passes Away

February 28th, 2010

Jake Elder When you hear about legends in the sport, you hear about drivers, team owners and the France family. But one of the biggest legends in NASCAR passed away this week. J.C. “Jake” Elder known as Suitcase Jake was 73.

 Jake’s career spanned a change in technology and NASCAR itself, yet always being at the top of the sport. In 1967 he helped Mario Andretti win the Daytona 500. 1968 & 1969 he won championships and 27 races with David Pearson. 1975 Jake was crew chief on Darrell Waltrip’s first win at Nashville. He also was with Darrell on his last win Jake with Daleat the 1992 Southern 500. He was with Dale Earnhardt for his first win, Rookie of the year and into his first championship season before packing his toolbox once again that earned his named “suitcase Jake.” Jake worked with many drivers at one time as crew chief or mechanic from Fred Lorenzen to Benny Parsons. He started his career at Petty Enterprises as a fabricator.  Many drivers respected his abilities but so did many other crew chiefs.

He earned his nickname because he was considered difficult to work. But many people said it was due to Jake being a perfectionist. He often would doJake Elderuble check every nut and bolt on the car.  Jake insisted it was his way as the only way. With his record maybe because it was the right way.

Jake Elder is one of a number of other crew chiefs who will one day be inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Dale Inman, Waddell Wilson,  Harry Hyde Leonard Wood, Buddy Parrott also need to be on that list. But there was none as colorful as Jake.  He will be remembered as one of the Legends in Nascar.

Fan dies from dragster crash

February 22nd, 2010

Antron Brown crashed his dragster at Firebird International Raceway in Phoenix on Sunday. His left rear wheel came off and struck a woman in the grandstands. The woman was airlifted to a hospital but was later pronounced dead. Her name and hometown has not been released.

Antron Brown was uninjured from the crash at the NHRA Arizona Nationals. The investigation is still continuing. Early reports are the wheel’s studs were sheared off.

The NHRA released a written statement that said “The entire NHRA community is deeply saddened by today’s incident and sends its thoughts and prayers to the woman’s family and friends.”

Danica, Danica, Danica…

February 13th, 2010
What the new NASCAR drivers looks like?

What the new NASCAR drivers looks like?

In most major newspapers there has been a ratio each day of two articles about Danica Patrick to one article about anything else in racing. Most Gannett chain newspapers last Sunday carried two articles about Danica Patrick and a small paragraph with small print about Kevin Harvick winning the Bud Shootout. The largest percentage of television coverage has focused on her. ESPN even uses a picture of Danica for their promo graphic for the race at Daytona. And that race is NOT the Daytona 500. Get used to it. There may be even more about Danica in the coming weeks.
Danica had her first race in a stock car last week in the ARCA Slick Mist 200 which was won by Bobby Gerhart. Ratings for the ARCA race increased 87% from last year. The ARCA race had 2.4 million viewers. Last year there was 1.3 million viewers. Newspapers, television & radio all know that Danica Patrick means ratings. This means more potential money from advertisers; more ticket sales; more exposure for sponsors; more everything. That is good for ARCA, the NASCAR Nationwide series, stock car racing and motorsports in general.
While a lot of the exposure is due to this particular woman race car driver, realize she was not the only woman in the ARCA race. Jennifer Jo Cobb, fellow Indycar driver Milka Duno, Jill George & Leilani Munter also competed in the ARCA Slick Mist 200 at Daytona. In the Nationwide race another woman Crissy Wallace will also race. Danica is better known, made a number of magazine pictorials, television appearances, commercials and has achieved a higher level of success in auto racing. She is a marketing machine. While only one win in her Indycar career, she did finished fifth in points for 2009 (better than all her other Andretti Green teamates) and third in last year’s Indianapolis 500. She has proven she can race and compete, yes even against the men.
While a sixth place finish in the ARCA race is not winning, Danica showed she is not afraid of racing. She got spun out by former F1 driver Nelson Piquet, Jr., shuffled toward the back of the pack and agressivly worked her way towards the front again. She even banged doors with Ricky Carmichael. Often the argument against women in racing is that they are not agressive enough. Danica has proven she can be, which might set her apart. That also may account for more exposure of Danica Patrick in the coming months which is good for the sport.

2010 Daytona 500 Starting Grid

February 12th, 2010
1. (5) Mark Martin, Chevrolet, 191.188 mph.
2. (88) Dale Earnhardt Jr., Chevrolet, 190.913.
3. (48) Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 190.359.
4. (9) Kasey Kahne, Ford, 189.056.
5. (29) Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 188.996.
6. (14) Tony Stewart, Chevrolet, 189.374.
7. (18) Kyle Busch, Toyota, 190.054.
8. (42) Juan Pablo Montoya, Chevrolet, 190.408.
9. (33) Clint Bowyer, Chevrolet, 190.118.
10. (2) Kurt Busch, Dodge, 190.359.
11. (78) Regan Smith, Chevrolet, 188.699.
12. (19) Elliott Sadler, Ford, 188.533.
13. (1) Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, 189.593.
14. (56) Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, 188.727.
15. (43) AJ Allmendinger, Ford, 189.255.
16. (20) Joey Logano, Toyota, 189.693.
17. (39) Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, 190.577.
18. (47) Marcos Ambrose, Toyota, 189.757.
19. (6) David Ragan, Ford, 189.282.
20. (00) David Reutimann, Toyota, 189.314.
21. (24) Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet, 190.05.
22. (83) Brian Vickers, Toyota, 188.628.
23. (16) Greg Biffle, Ford, 188.411.
24. (17) Matt Kenseth, Ford, 190.05.
25. (11) Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 189.072.
26. (12) Brad Keselowski, Dodge, 189.737.
27. (99) Carl Edwards, Ford, 189.195.
28. (36) Mike Bliss, Chevrolet, 189.052.
29. (55) Michael McDowell, Toyota, 185.924.
30. (82) Scott Speed, Toyota, 189.958.
31. (13) Max Papis, Toyota, 188.198.
32. (98) Paul Menard, Ford, 189.294.
33. (34) John Andretti, Ford, 187.512.
34. (7) Robby Gordon, Toyota, 188.735.
35. (37) Travis Kvapil, Ford, 187.285.
36. (77) Sam Hornish Jr., Dodge, 190.05.
37. (38) Robert Richardson Jr., Ford, 187.289.
38. (26) Boris Said, Ford, 186.908.
39. (31) Jeff Burton, Chevrolet, 188.865.
40. (21) Bill Elliott, Ford, 190.573.
41. (87) Joe Nemechek, Toyota, 189.709.
42. (71) Bobby Labonte, Chevrolet, 189.665.
43. (51) Michael Waltrip, Toyota, 189.454.
Failed to qualify:
44. (90) Casey Mears, Chevrolet, 188.300.
45. (27) Kirk Shelmerdine, Toyota, 184.407.
46. (49) David Gilliland, Toyota, 187.766.
47. (46) Terry Cook, Dodge, 187.056.
48. (75) Derrike Cope, Dodge, 185.041.
49. (09) Aric Almirola, Chevrolet, 187.278.
50. (66) Dave Blaney, Toyota, 186.254.
51. (32) Reed Sorenson, Toyota, 188.391.
52. (92) Mike Wallace, Dodge, 182.678.
53. (57) Norm Benning, Chevrolet, 180.607.
54. (97) Jeff Fuller, Toyota, 187.363.

Crashing at Daytona Begins…

February 6th, 2010

 It was only practice for the Budweiser Shootout but after Mark Martin (#5) and Denny Hamlin (#11) got together seven cars in total were involved in a crash.  Besides Denny Hamlin and Mark Martin, also involved were Greg Biffle, Clint Bowyer, Jamie McMurray all will go to backup cars, with  Joey Logano and Kyle Busch having minimal damage. Clint Boyer was in the #31 for Kevin Harvick who is suffering from the flu. 
 After the wreck, Hamlin said: “ Ultimately, everyone’s out there jockeying for position and everything to find out what their car can do. I mean, it’s hairy out there for sure, and those things are going to happen whenever you’re running that close and there’s miscommunication, you’re going to have guys running into each other.”
 Is this an indication of what to expect during the races here at Daytona? This season NASCAR has softened its bump-drafting rule. Drivers are permitted to be more aggressive on the track.
The Budweiser Shootout will be broadcast on FOX Saturday, Feb. 6 at 8:00pm.

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