Nascar News and Notes – 1/3/08

Nascar Weekly News and Notes - 1/3/08
by Virginia Vroom of Predictem.com

Thank goodness Speed Week is almost here!! I’d rather write about
racing and specs than write about the gossip of the NASCAR world any
day. But this one story has caught my eye since it began. It’s
something that is entertaining and a bit bewildering seeing as who the
star of this one is.

Back in November, Kasey Kahne was trying to change his image…or so it
seemed. While at the last race of the season, drivers were moving in
and out of the motorhome lot like any other normal race day, except on
this day, a certain security guard was on the brink of losing his job.
The security guard is known as Archibald Hutchinson. He is a 62 year
old man who was being questioned by his boss because of correct
credentials not being shown by those entering in and out of the lot
including the drivers.

Little did Kahne know, Hutchinson feared for his job. Let’s face it.
He probably has a lot more to lose from being unemployed than Kahne does
at this point. Anyway, while heading for his motor coach, Kahne
approached the gates and failed to produce proper identification and
credentials, meaning he didn’t have an ID or a badge of some sort. The
driver suit was not enough, at least according to track security.

I can almost understand the necessity of credentials for those entering
in and out of the lot, but come on guys! Drivers entering the lot in
the driver’s suits are probably okay to let in.

To get back to the topic at hand, though, Kahne was frustrated that he
was not being let into the lot and proceeded to push the security guard
to the ground. According to Hutchinson and his attorney, Hutchinson
suffered a tear in his lumbar spine and has to receive medical attention
from an orthopedic surgeon. The problem with all of this is that no one
appears to be on Kahne’s side of the story with the exception of his
brother. The other police officers and enforcement personnel are siding
with Hutchinson, saying that Kahne shoved the security officer to the
ground.

Is this really possible, baby-faced Kasey Kahne being charged in BOTH
criminal and civil courts over a physical assault??? The reported
damages being sought are over $15,000 in medical expenses and more to
cover loss wages and legal fees.

Kahne had a rocky year on the track as well with an average finish of
22nd place, his worst average since being in the Cup series. He had 8
top tens, but those were few and far between. Kahne seems to be the one
with the worst luck. It’s not his driving ability. The boy can drive.
We’ve all seen it. But it just seems like he is always caught up in
someone else’s wreck. Whatever the problem is, it got the best of his
off-the-track personality in Miami last year. I don’t think that anyone
sees Kasey Kahne as an aggressive person, especially while not on the
track. He is the meek and mild-tempered driver that everyone seems to
get along with.

Whatever got Kasey’s undies in a bunch in November has certainly made in
impact in the Evernham garage. While the team publicly stands behind
their driver, it’s hard to believe that someone is not telling Kasey
what cards to play to keep his squeaky clean image. This is definitely
not a great way to start 2008 for Kahne coming off such an inconsistent
year, but hopefully this will all be said and done before the real
racing starts.

The first NASCAR programming starts Monday night on SPEED. Testing is
getting ready to hit high gear here in the next couple of weeks. The
duels are on February 14th…how fitting to be on Valentine’s Day.
Sounds good to me! That means that Daytona is only 45 days away! Get
ready, y’all! It’s almost time to go racin’!