Nascar Weekly News and Notes
by Virginia Vroom of Predictem.com
I honestly don’t know what to report on this week. The only reason I
say that is because there are so many little stories floating around out
there right now after the Daytona 500 last Sunday. I guess that I will
just touch a little bit on each of them.
The first thing that I think I HAVE to talk about is Hendrick. While this may make many of you happy, Hendrick’s teams struggled last weekend
more than anyone could’ve imagined. Gordon dropped out first with
problems in his suspension system, making it “unsafe” for him to
continue without making repairs.
Johnson was involved in a wreck with
Truex Jr. but only after his jack man failed to get the left side of the
car up during a pit stop, putting Johnson well into the gaggle of cars
Casey Mears caused his own problems, waiting too late to
jump in front of Stewart to get a push to the front. Stewart clipped
his bumper and essentially ended Mears’ day. Earnhardt Jr. was the only
Hendrick driver left, and he was left cold turkey without any help.
Anyone who knows racing knows that you need help at a super speedway to
win. Anyway, Jr. lost because he did not pit when he should have
because of lack of communication within his team, something that his
crew chief, Tony Eury Jr., was very upset about. The bottom line here,
Hendrick struggled more than any other team out there on Sunday.
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IT’S THAT SIMPLE! BET ON THESE MATCHUPS AT BODOG
Another story is the strength of the Dodges. Newman and Kurt Busch
pulled it out on Sunday, using teamwork to bring Penske his first ever
500 win and his first ever 1-2 win. Reed Sorenson also represented the
Dodges well. This came as a surprise because of Dodges struggling
during speedweeks and practices and testing. No one thought that a
Dodge would contend for the win, let alone actually pull it off.
Toyotas are also a big story because of their out-of-the-gate
domination. They are at the top of every speed chart and also in
victory lane with Denny Hamlin. Kyle Busch led the most laps at Daytona
but failed to win. In fact, Stewart and Busch were up front all day
long but could not manage to pull it off in the end. This will be one
to watch because it seems as though Gibbs spent more time beating
teamwork down everyone’s throats than anything else. If Hendrick’s
teams’ performance last year is any indication, Gibbs is taking the
right road. Now all they have to do is pull off a win, which in my
opinion is right around the corner.
Penalties are also something that I have to mention. Robby Gordon and
his crew chief were fined this past Tuesday because of many infractions
that NASCAR officials found on opening day in Daytona. Because of this,
the team was fined 100 owner AND championship points as well as Gordon’s
crew chief being fined $100,000 and being suspended.
NASCAR made it
clear last year that infractions would not be taken lightly and
evidently Gordon is the poster child this year for NASCAR’s cause.
Instead of being 8th in points after his strong Daytona finish, Gordon
is now 40th in points, a hole that he is unlikely to dig out of. In the
name of penalties, we can’t forget to mention that Tony Stewart and Kurt
Busch are still on probation for five more races after their scuffle
during practice before Daytona.
I think that’s about all for right now, but after California, there will
definitely be more to report. Everyone will have a better idea as to
how these cars are going to do on a new speedway, if Toyota really is
all it is cracked up to be, and IF Hendrick can pull his teams together
and get back on a winning track. Keep your eyes peeled for more to come!