Monday, April 30, 2012

K&N Pro Series West Back To Stockton

News &Notes: K&N West Back To Stockton

Series Returns To Historic California Short Track
By Kevin W. Green, NASCAR
April 30, 2012 - 2:12pm
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Eric Holmes, a three-time champion in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West, grew up watching his father compete at Stockton (Calif.) 99 Speedway. Naturally, the closure of the historic short-track at the end of the 2006 season was a very big disappointment to Holmes, who hails from nearby Escalon, Calif.

Plans to replace the high-banked quarter-mile oval with homes fell through, however, and the track re-opened in 2009. This week marks the return of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West to Stockton 99 Speedway, with the Pick-N-Pull Self-Service Auto & Truck Dismantlers150 on Saturday, May 5.

Now Holmes, who scored 13 of his 16 career series wins on tracks under a half-mile in length, wants to finally notch a win at his home track.

“The last time we ran there, was my first (full) year in 2006,” Holmes said. “I came close to winning it, just had to beat Mike David. We won the pole and finished second to him. I’ve won a lot of late model races there and modified races and Southwest Tour races, but not a NASCAR K&N race.”

Getting that win and adding Stockton 99 Speedway to the list of tracks where he has won in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West is “very important,” Holmes said.

“Back in December, I went to their banquet to help them announce that we were having the event,” he said of the track’s announcement. “I told them, ‘you guys are doing this just for me, so I can get a shot at winning one here.’ We’ve won at a lot of short tracks on the West Coast in the K&N cars. We definitely have got to get one at our home track at Stockton. I’m glad I get the opportunity.”

Holmes drives the No. 20 NAPA Toyota for Bill McAnally Racing – a team that won at Stockton in 2003 and 2004. He joined the team several years later, at the beginning of the 2008 season.
Competing so close to home, he also gets a lot of support from the fans that turn out at Stockton.

“It’s nice, because everybody comes out to watch – friends and family, some of our customers and employees,” said Holmes, who runs a nearby NAPA Auto Parts Store. “We kind of get that opportunity in Roseville, but this is an hour and a half closer to my home and 15 minutes from Escalon. It’s definitely fun, because everybody comes out. And being in May, it will be great weather and a great weekend. We’re looking forward to it.”

Race: Pick-N-Pull Self-Service Auto & Truck Dismantlers 150
Place: Stockton 99 Speedway
Date: Saturday, May 5
Time: 8:30 p.m. PT
TV Schedule: SPEED, May 17, 3 p.m. ET
Radio: NASCAR Home, Live
Track Layout: .25-mile paved oval
2011 Winner: Event not held
2011 Polesitter: Event not held
Event Schedule: Saturday: Practice 12:30-1:15 p.m., 1:45–2:15 p.m., Qualifying 5 p.m.
Track PR Contact: David Holman, (209) 351-3202
NASCAR IMC Contact: Kevin W. Green (661) 392-8543


Fast Facts

Race: This event is the fourth of 15 events on the 2012 schedule for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West. The series visited Stockton 99 Speedway 21 times between 1966 and 2006.

Procedure: The starting field is 24 cars, including provisionals. The first 20 cars will qualify through two-lap time trials. The remaining four spots will be awarded through the provisional process. The race will be 150 laps (37.5 miles).

Track: Stockton 99 Speedway is a .25-mile paved oval with blended banking of up to 14 degrees in Turn 1 and Turn 2 and up to 17 degrees in Turn 3 and Turn 4.

Records: Qualifying: Mike Duncan, May 29, 2004, 63.861 mph, 14.093 sec.; Race: Dick Bown, May 13, 1972, 56.250 mph, 40 minutes. (150 laps)

Race Notes

Tight Championship Battle: After three events this season, series veteran David Mayhew leads the championship standings by one point over second-year driver Dylan Kwasniewski. Defending series champion Greg Pursley is four points out of the lead, with Derek Thorn seven points out of first. Three-time series champion Eric Holmes is fifth in the standings, eight points behind Mayhew.

Three Races, Three Different Winners: The first three races have produced three different winners – David Mayhew at Phoenix, Derek Thorn at Havasu and Greg Pursley at Miller.

Back-To-Back Events: The series has back-to-back events this week, with the Stockton race following seven days after the race at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele. Utah.

Friday Practice: Teams will have an opportunity to get some extra track time at Stockton 99 Speedway with a special practice session the track is holding on Friday, May 4.

Series Experience At Stockton: Only five of the drivers entered at Stockton competed there in past series events. Jack Sellers leads the way with eight starts. Daryl Harr has five starts there; while his father, Carl, has four. Eric Holmes has two starts and Greg Pursley has one.

Back In Action: Jessica Brunelli is set to make her first series start of the year at Stockton. The 19-year-old driver from Hayward, Calif., competed in four series races last year. She also raced late models in 2010 and 2011, while living in North Carolina and participating in NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program.

Live Radio Coverage: Live radio coverage of this event will be carried on, by the team at Speed51. Fans can access the live race audio stream by going to on Saturday and clicking on play under the radio logo on the right side of the page.

Speedway Assists Band In Raising Funds: Stockton 99 Speedway is helping the Pitman High School “Marching Pride” band from Turlock, Calif., raise funds for its trip to Washington D.C. to march in the Fourth of July parade. Band members will be selling souvenir programs at the race and will receive a portion of the proceeds from the sales. The speedway is also donating a portion of the proceeds from the sales of fountain drinks to the band.

Final Notes From Miller

Third Consecutive MMP Win For Pursley: Greg Pursley rallied back from a flat tire to capture his third straight Miller Motorsports Park win in the Utah Grand Prix on Saturday in Tooele, Utah. In addition to picking up his 10th career series win, Pursley also garnered his 12th career series pole in winning the Coors Light Pole Award at MMP.

First Podium Finish: In only his second series race, rookie Austin Dyne finished third after leading for much of the race at Miller. The 20-year-old from Malibu, Calif., led laps 26-48.

Career Best Mark: Scott Ivie came away from Utah with a career series best finish, crossing the finish line sixth. His best previous mark was 11th at MMP in 2009.

Top 10 First Time Out: Series newcomer Kyle Heckman finished seventh at Miller to notch a top-10 finish in his first series start.

Up Next: East-West Combination Race at IowaNext on the 2012 schedule will be the annual NASCAR K&N Pro Series East-West combination race at Iowa Speedway on May 19.

It is the first of two East-West combination races at the Newton, Iowa track this year. It will mark the sixth year for the East-West drivers to face off on the .875-mile high-banked track.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

TOOELE, Utah – Greg Pursley rallied from a flat tire to claim the Utah Grand Prix for the third year in a row on Saturday at Miller Motorsports Park.

It was the 10th career NASCAR K&N Pro Series West victory for the Newhall, Calif., driver and the first of 2012 for the defending series champion.

Pursley dominated the early portion of the race and led the first 21 laps before stopping for fuel. At one point he had a more than six-second lead on Eric Holmes. After the stop he drove his No. 26 Gene Price Motorsports/Star Nursery Ford through the field and made it to second place before suffering the flat tire on Lap 39. Fortunately, Pursley discovered the tire going down at precisely the best place on the 2.2-mile road course.

“We stopped for fuel and I got back up front where I could see the lead, then I felt the tire going down,” said Pursley. “Luckily, it was right at pit entrance and I was able to come right down pit road. The guys on the crew did a super job at getting it changed quickly and we only dropped to eighth or so.”

1 Greg Pursley
2 Eric Holmes
3 Austin Dyne
4 Dylan Kwasniewski
5 Austin Cameron
After the near disaster, Pursley wasn’t sure if he could make it back to the lead, but the yellow flag came out on Lap 44 when Jack Sellers suffered an ignition problem. The caution tightened up the field and set up a four-lap dash to the finish line giving Pursley a puncher’s chance at the victory.

On the subsequent restart the field roared into Turn 1 where several cars made contact with one another sending everyone scrambling for daylight. Pursley took a chance and it paid off as he was able to wrestle the lead away from Austin Dyne coming to the white flag.

“Cars were everywhere and I just dove to the inside,” Pursley said. “Once I made it through, I just put my head down and tried to reel off some qualifying laps to get the lead.”

Pursley had a clear handle on the race track as he was fastest in the morning practice session before earning his 12th career Coors Light Pole Award in afternoon qualifying.

“Our team really likes road racing and I enjoy racing here,” he stated. “This was a brand new car that we brought here and it was very strong.”

Holmes, like Pursley, was able to make up some ground on that final restart and had to overcome some adversity of his own before finishing second behind the wheel of his No. 20 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota.

“We had some sort of penalty with the catch can when we stopped for fuel,” said the three-time series champion out of Escalon, Calif. “I’m still not sure what that was about, but we were able to overcome that and get a solid finish. We’ve struggled a bit to start the season, so we’ll take second place.”

Had it not been for that last caution Dyne, more than likely, would have driven to Victory Lane in just his second series start, but he was relegated to third-place finish after the Lap 47 melee.
“It went better than I thought it might in our first road-course race,” said Dyne. “But without that last caution, I think we had enough to hold everybody off.”

Pursley’s teammate Dylan Kwasniewski and Austin Cameron finished fourth and fifth, respectively. For Cameron, it was his first NASCAR K&N Pro Series West start since 2008.

Scott Ivie, Kyle Heckman, Cameron Hayley, David Mayhew and Carl Harr rounded out the top 10.

With the win, Pursley secured a locked-in starting position for the inaugural UNOH Battle at the Beach during 2013 Speedweeks on a temporary short track at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway.

After three races, Mayhew leads Kwasniewski by one point and Pursley by three in the championship point standings.

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West will race next in the Pick-N-Pull 150 at Stockton (Calif.) 99 Speedway on Saturday, May 5.


Greg Pursley (26) en route to his first victory of the 2012 season 
and his third straight at Miller Motorsports Park. 
 Jeff Bottari/Getty Images for NASCAR

By Jason Christley and Shon Sbarra, NASCARApril 28, 2012 - 8:42pm

Monday, April 16, 2012

Thorn Scores First Career Win

Takes Checkered In K&N West Race At Havasu

LAKE HAVASU CITY, Ariz. – Derek Thorn earned his first career NASCAR win in just his eighth career NASCAR K&N Pro Series West start Saturday at Havasu 95 Speedway.

Thorn, who recorded his first career Coors Light Pole Award earlier in the day, waged a race-long, back-and-forth battle with Dylan Kwasniewski before charging ahead for the win in the closing laps of the Toyota/NAPA 150 presented by Gene Price Motorsports.

Thorn and Kwasniewski traded the lead back and forth in side-by-side action around the tight, quarter-mile oval following several restarts, with the pair exchanging the lead six times. Thorn eventually pulled away in the No. 6 Sunrise Ford/Lucas Oil/Eibach Ford to win by 1.010 seconds. He led four times for 141 laps, while Kwasniewski took the lead three times for nine laps.

“I’ve got to pay a tribute to the Sunrise Ford team, (car owner) Bob Bruncati and (crew chief) Bill Sedgwick and all the guys at the shop,” Thorn said of the team. “It was really hard coming here to this track, because no one had raced here. It’s hard to take something from practice and prepare yourself for a 150-lap race, because at 125 laps the car is doing something completely different than it was at Lap 50. It was a lot of guess-work, but the guys did an awesome job of putting an awesome car underneath me. I’m so thankful to be here and get this victory in (the) K&N (Pro Series).”

Thorn – who called Lakeport, Calif., home, but now resides in Bakersfield – made a point of thanking those who have helped him in his career, particularly his parents and Bruncati.

“There’s been a lot of people help me get to this point,” said Thorn, who turns 26 later this month. “I’ve got to thank my mom and dad, especially. The list is endless for the amount of people that have helped me out to get to this point in my career. I can’t thank them enough, especially Bob Bruncati.”

Points leader David Mayhew, who started seventh on the grid, got by Kwasniewski in the late stages of the race for second. Michael Self and Eric Holmes rounded out the top five.

“When the sun went down the thing came alive,” Mayhew said of his No. 17 MMI Services/Ron’s Rear Ends Chevrolet. “It was fun to come out of here with a second.”

Kwasniewski, who had previously won at Havasu in other divisions, was upbeat about the event.

“It was a great race,” he said. “I love all the fans here. I was trying as hard as I could, but it was getting a little too loose.”

Several newcomers to the series came away with a top 10 finish, meanwhile. Series rookie Cameron Hayley finished sixth, with Austin Dyne coming home seventh in his series debut. Braeden Havens was eighth, in only his second series start, while Ryan Partridge was ninth in his series debut. Defending series champion Greg Pursley was 10th.

With the victory, Thorn locked up a spot in the UNOH Battle At The Beach, to be held on a temporary oval on the back stretch of Daytona International Speedway during Speedweeks 2013.

The Toyota/NAPA Auto Parts 150 presented by Gene Price Motorsports will air on SPEED on May 10 at 3 p.m. ET.

Mayhew leads Thorn by three points and Kwasniewski by six after two races.

The next event on the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West schedule is the Utah Grand Prix at Miller Motorsports Park on April 28.

RESULTS - - - - - - - - - - RACE RECAP

Derek Thorn (6) and Dylan Kwasniewski were side-by-side
for the start and through much of the race at Havasu.
Jeff Bottari/Getty Images for NASCAR

By Jason Christley, NASCAR

Friday, April 13, 2012

Rookie Paulie Harraka Supports
“Send A Soldier To The Rock”

Camping World Truck Series Rookie contender, Paul Harraka and his team announced that they will carry the colors of Rockingham’s “Send A Soldier To The Rock” initiative on their Richie Wauters’ No. 5 Ford.

Read more - Click here

Toyota/NAPA Auto Parts 150
presented by Gene Price Motorsports

Fast Facts

Race: This is the second of 15 events on the 2012 schedule for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West. It marks the first visit by the series to Havasu 95 Speedway.

Procedure: The starting field is 22 cars, including provisionals. The first 18 cars will qualify through two-lap time trials. The remaining four spots will be awarded through the provisional process. The race will be 150 laps (37.5 miles).

Track: Havasu 95 Speedway is a quarter-mile paved oval with 10 degrees banking in the turns and two degrees in the straightaways.

Records: To be established.

Special Activities Get Underway On Friday
In advance of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race at Havasu 95 Speedway, several special local activities are slated in Lake Havasu City, Ariz., on Friday, April 13.

Fans will get an opportunity to meet the drivers during an autograph session at Kokomo inside London Bridge Resort from 2-3 p.m. on Friday.

Race fans will then get a chance to see the colorful team haulers in a parade through Lake Havasu City on Friday afternoon. The haulers are slated to depart Dillard’s (5501 Hwy 95) at 3 p.m. and head through town on their way to the speedway.

Action at the track, meanwhile, gets underway Friday evening with the speedway holding several practice sessions between 5:30-8 p.m.

Race Notes
Short Haul:
It will be a short drive to Havasu 95 Speedway for the Gene Price Motorsports team. The team is based just north of Parker, Ariz., about 25 miles south of the track.

Local Driver: The entry list includes local driver Jerry Snell of Lake Havasu City, Ariz. Snell, a track champion at Havasu 95 Speedway, will be driving the No. 02 Ford for GSR Racing.

Two Other Newcomers: Two other drivers are also set to make their series debut at Havasu 95 Speedway. Austin Dyne will make his first appearance. The 20-year-old Malibu, Calif., driver will wheel one of two entries from car owner Bob Bruncati this season. Also slated to make his series debut is Ron Jay, who will be driving the No. 30 Holleran’s Performance Dodge.

Back In Action: Eighteen-year-old Braeden Havens is slated to return to competition at Havasu. Havens – who made his series debut late last season at his hometown track in Spokane, Wash. – is scheduled to run select events for Thompson Motorsports this year.

Milestones: Carl Harr is set to make his 50th career series start at Havasu, driving his No. 2 WestWorld Computers Chevrolet. The Edmonton, Alberta driver made his series debut on March 1, 2001 at The Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Michael Self, who drives the No. 21 Golden Gate Meat/RCR Chevrolet, is slated to make his 30th career series start at Havasu. Self of Park City, Utah, made his first start at Portland (Ore.) International Raceway on July 19, 2009.

Final Notes From Phoenix
Wire-to-wire win:
After winning the Coors Light Pole Award for the Talking Stick Resort 50 at Phoenix International Raceway on March 3, David Mayhew led wire-to-wire for the victory. It marked his fourth career series win and his seventh career series pole.

Trio of top fives: Derek Thorn finished fifth at Phoenix, giving him top-five finishes in all three series races he has competed in at PIR.

Another top 10 for DJ: DJ Kennington, the 2010 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series champion, finished 10th at PIR – matching the 10th-place finish he registered in last year’s season opener at Phoenix.

Up Next: Miller Motorsports Park
The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West heads to Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah for an event on April 28. It is the first of four road course events on this year’s schedule.

The race will mark the sixth annual visit by the series to the massive racing facility west of Salt Lake City. The five series visits to Tooele have produced four different winners. The only multiple winner, Greg Pursley, will be going for his third consecutive victory at MMP.


Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Crown Royal To Provided
"Once-In-A-Lifetime" Experience

Check out this exciting video about the Crown Royal Presents the “Your Hero’s Name Here” 400 at the Brickyard.

The past few years, Crown Royal has provided a once-in-a-lifetime experience to a deserving military member through its Crown Royal "Your Hero's Name Here" 400 program, which awards race naming rights to a fan.

This annual program provides naming rights to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on July 29, 2012 to a deserving hero – from servicemen and servicewomen to firefighters, police officers, first responders and local volunteers.

What an “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity!

The video showcases the previous winners’ amazing experiences that truly turned them into a celebrity for the day – something that can only be done at a NASCAR race. This year marks the first time the winner will have their name in lights at one of the most prestigious venues in sports, Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

NASCAR Race Mom attended last year’s event: “Crown Royal Presents The Matthew and Daniel Hansen 400.” (related article here; here; and here ) I had a blast!

To nominate a hero for naming rights to the race, you can submit a short entry via the “Crown Your Hero” tab on the Crown Royal Facebook Page. Nominations will be accepted through April 30, 2012 and the five finalists will be announced in May.

Fans will then be provided the chance to cast a vote to determine which hero will get to see his or her name taking center stage at the Brickyard this summer. The winner will be revealed in a special ceremony leading up to the race.

My Team, the Royal Chasers (Justin Korkidis, of Complex,
NASCAR Race Mom, and Mike Arone of The Rugged).
We came in second in the Capture the Crown Scavenger Hunt.
(Richmond International Raceway - April 29, 2011)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Inaugural Visit to Havasu 95 Speedway

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West heads to Lake Havasu City, Ariz., this week for its inaugural visit to Havasu 95 Speedway and the Toyota/NAPA Auto Parts 150 presented by Gene Price Motorsports on Saturday, April 14.

It’s the second event of the season and marks a transition from the largest oval track on this year’s schedule – the one-mile of Phoenix International Raceway, where the series opened its season last month – to one of the shortest tracks, the quarter-mile oval at Havasu.

/files/havasu_logo_copy_150.jpgDavid Mayhew led wire-to-wire for the win at Phoenix, providing a great start for his bid to earn the series title. He finished second in the championship standings in 2010, but last year opted to run a limited series schedule while tasting success running select events in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and starting his first NASCAR Nationwide Series race, in which he came away with a top 10 at Iowa in August. Those outings came through an affiliation with Kevin Harvick Inc., however with the changes to that team; Mayhew turned his attention this year to chasing the championship in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West.

“Our focus is to go out there and win all the races we can in the West and try to win the championship,” said Mayhew, who has not given up on a chance to race at the national level. “If something does come up, we’ll go that route – but for now we’re concentrating on the West championship. We’ve got the right stuff in place to go do it. So that’s our focus.”

Like most of the drivers in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West, Mayhew will be getting his first look at Havasu 95 Speedway.

“I’m not really sure what to expect,” he said. “I’m hoping it’s going to be a good two-groove track. We’re going to go there with an open mind and see what happens in practice.”

Mayhew – who drives the No. 17 MMI Services/Ron’s Rear Ends Chevrolet for car owner Steve McGowan – lived in Atascadero, Calif., before moving to Bakersfield; where he runs a sign shop.

Source: Kevin Green

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Speed TV Broadcast Schedule


Air Date
Phoenix International Raceway
Bristol Motor Speedway
04/26 (live)
Richmond International Raceway
Whelen AAS
04/26 (live)
Richmond International Raceway
Greenville Pickens Speedway
Havasu 95 Speedway
Stockton 99 Speedway
K&N PS Combo
Iowa Speedway
Bowman Gray Stadium
The Bullring at Las Vegas
Gresham Motorsports Park
Langley Speedway
Infineon Raceway
CNB Bank Raceway Park
Evergreen Speedway
Columbus Motor Speedway
Colorado National Speedway
K&N PS Combo
Iowa Speedway
Whelen Combo
08/22 (live)
Bristol Motor Speedway
Portland International Raceway
Greenville Pickens Speedway
New Hampshire Motor Spdwy.
Dover International Speedway
NAPA Speedway
All American Speedway
Rockingham Speedway
11/10 (live)
Phoenix International Raceway
All broadcast times are 3 p.m. ET unless noted
Tentative – subject to change

2012 TV Schedule For
K&N Pro and Whelen Modified Series

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West finale from
Phoenix in November will air live on SPEED.
(Getty Images for NASCAR)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR announced today the 2012 race season programming for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series and NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour on SPEED, including three races that will air live.

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Richmond International Raceway on April 26 and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West finale at Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday, Nov. 10 will be live broadcasts, as will the fourth annual combination race between the NASCAR Whelen Modified and NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tours at Bristol will air live on Aug. 22.

The Richmond race night will also include live broadcast of the Denny Hamlin Foundation Short-Track Showdown, a NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model division race.

The broadcast calendar also includes 23 taped-delayed events for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series – NASCAR’s top developmental series – which consists of championships in the East and West. The races will air on Thursdays at 3 p.m. ET, beginning April 12 with the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West season-opener from Phoenix International Raceway, which was run on March 3. The NASCAR K&N Pro Series East opener on March 17 from Bristol Motor Speedway will air on April 19.

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series broadcast schedule includes both East-West combination events at Iowa Speedway. Other highlights include inaugural K&N Pro Series West events at Havasu (Ariz.) 95 Speedway and NAPA Speedway in Sandia, N.M. as well as the K&N Pro Series East’s season finale and first trip to historic Rockingham (N.C.) Speedway.

“The NASCAR K&N Pro Series features the next generation of top-level NASCAR stars competing alongside accomplished veterans and SPEED’s coverage of the series provides a great platform to showcase these drivers,” said George Silbermann, NASCAR vice president, regional and touring series. “We are also very fortunate to be able to bring live coverage to the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and its passionate fan base.”

SPEED, in conjunction with NASCAR Media Group, will air each NASCAR K&N Pro Series tape-delayed race as a one-hour show. SPEED, with its popular and wide-ranging coverage of NASCAR, is the nation’s first and only cable television network dedicated to automotive and motorcycle racing, performance and lifestyle.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

New Stockpile Of NASCAR Talent

*** It should be noted that NASCAR Race Mom picked Darrell Wallace Jr. as the favorite to win the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Race at Greenville (S.C.) Pickens Speedway. Congratulations to Darrell Wallace Jr. and his team.
Look at the Joe Gibbs Racing stable. Household names spill from its cupboard: Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano.

Same with Hendrick Motorsports. Its roster boasts Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kasey Kahne. Seemingly, the organization is set for life. Literally. Gordon has a lifetime contract with Hendrick.

But every organization, even one as prolific as Hendrick, needs to stockpile talent. And those two are doing it from the ground, up.

Darrell Wallace Jr. heads up the list of names that will fill out primetime rides in the coming decade. Wallace, a current Joe Gibbs Racing developmental driver and former NASCAR Drive For Diversity standout, won last weekend at Greenville (S.C.) Pickens Speedway to take the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East points lead.

Wallace’s stats scream “future star.” In 24 starts in the NKNPSE, he has won six times – a 25 percent clip – and finished in the top 10 in all but five starts. Comparatively, here are the NASCAR K&N Pro Series winning percentages of a few well-known NASCAR national series drivers: Logano (41%), Martin Truex Jr. (8%) and Ryan Truex (23%). Ricky Craven, regarded as the most talented prospect in series history prior to Logano’s emergence, had a winning percentage of 27%.

Likewise, Hendrick strategically grooms for the future. Chase Elliott, son of 1988 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Bill Elliott, is competing in his second season of NKNPSE competition. Elliott sits second in the points behind Wallace, collecting top-10 finishes in each of the first two races of 2012. Ben Kennedy, third in NKNPSE points, has scored top 10s in the first two races this season with technical support from Hendrick Motorsports.

Ryan Gifford, a member of Rev Racing and of NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program, opened his 2012 NKNPSE season with a third-place finish at Bristol Motor Speedway and currently sits fourth in points.

The NASCAR Ladder System – it’s the way of the stock car world.

Richard Childress Racing young guns Austin and Ty Dillon continue their climb after making their NASCAR debut in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Austin became the youngest champion in NASCAR Camping World Truck Series history last season and has immediately found success at the next level – he’s third in points in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Brother Ty nabbed a runner-up finish at Martinsville, and is fourth in the truck points.

Similarly, Roush Fenway Racing has developed incredible talent. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. wears the NNS crown, and may again this year. Trevor Bayne is a Daytona 500 champion, and a likely future star.

Source: NASCAR News & Notes (Race 7/Samsung Mobile 500)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

NASCAR Era In Europe

The twists and turns of Circuit Paul Armagnac in Nogaro, France,
will kick off NASCAR racing in Europe with the EURO-RACECAR's
Nogaro 200 April 6-9. (Courtesy of EURO-RACECAR)

New NASCAR Era Kicks Off In Europe

Euro Racecar Opens Season This Weekend In Nogaro

With the long term partnership signed with its American model, a new era begins for the EURO-RACECAR, the first official NASCAR series in Europe.

EURO-RACECAR, in its first season as a sanctioned NASCAR Touring Series, kicks off the 2012 season with the Nogaro 200 at Circuit Paul Armagnac in Nogaro, France April 6-9.

In Nogaro, 25 cars - Chevrolet Camaro, Ford Mustang or Dodge Charger and Challenger - will be on the grid. Nearly 50 drivers will enter the 2 Championships ELITE and OPEN.

logo-nogaro-200“It is a great honor for all our drivers, this weekend, the first poleman and the first winner will enter the NASCAR history and be part of NASCAR familly”, said Jerome Galpin, founder and promoter of EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series. “I’m particularly glad this happens in Nogaro. This is the hometown of the series, where it first ever raced.”

This championship runs tubular chassis racecars weighing 1170 kilos and powered by 5.7 litres V8 engined developing 450 hp, the grid is highly international. The entry list includes drivers from seven countries: France, Spain, England, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland and Sweden.

“We are happy to offer an international grid of such a high level,” said Jerome Galpin. “The level is higher than these past years and everything can happen. We’re very happy to welcome talented young drivers who will fight for the Junior title but for the victory, too.”

As said by the organizer, the level of entrants is particularly high with fights all over the pack both in ELITE and OPEN championships or for the Junior, Challenger, Gentleman or Legend Trophies.

Who will become the first ever European NASCAR Touring Series Champion? Not only will the winner be honored on the stage during the NASCAR Night of Champions Touring Series Awards Gala at the end of the season, but the driver will earned a locked-in spot to compete at the UNOH Battle At The Beach during 2013 Speedweeks at Daytona International Speedway.

Among the drivers to watch include France's Romain Thievin and Romain Iannetta, and Spain's Ander Vilarino, as well as rookies Gregory Guilvert and Dimitri Enjalbert of France, and England's Nigel Greensall, Harry Vaulkhard, and James Winslow. Top Juniors drivers include France's Willy Boucenna, Romain Fournillier, Vincent Gonneau, Valentin Simonnet and Carole Perrin, and Sweden's Freddy Nordström.

For this opening event, Bob Duvall, NASCAR Director, Weekly & Touring Business Development, and Richard Buck, Director of Touring Series, North America, will be there. Both will be particularly attentive to the development of the series.

“They will be special consultants on this first NASCAR Touring Series race organized in Europe. We will develop our collaboration on many technical points and so work on all the improvements to make of EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series a major European championship and the natural channel to the USA”, concluded Jerome Galpin.

The champion hangs back the helmet: 2011 champion Eric Helary is now retired from driving. Now living in Toulouse, France, he will still be involved in EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series but as the team manager of Still Racing who enters 2 Chevrolet Camaro and 1 Dodge Challenger.

Two expected favorites: The two 2011 runner-ups, Romain Thievin (France) and Ander Vilarino (Spain) are obviously the expected favorites for the 2012 title. Thieven, who will race for Still Racing, scored in 2011 seven top fives and nine top 10s. Vilarino, the leading driver of TFT, team from Nogaro, scored two victories, two pole positions, six top fives and seven top 10s.

Two female drivers on the grid: French Carole Perrin (Autosport 42, France) and the Belgian Nathalie Maillet (Racing Club Partners-GR3) will bring a woman’s presence to the grid. Perrin, 25, already won the 2011 ELITE Sprint in Motorland-Aragon (Spain).

Welcome to Harry Vaulkhard: 2007 Champion of the Seat Cupra Championship Great Britain, the British Harry Vaulkhard raced the BTCC for 2 seasons before joining the WTCC in 2010 on a Chevrolet Lacetti. The landmark of his carreer in this championship is his victory in the Independent Trophy in Monza. He will cross on the EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series tracks his compatriots Nigel Greensall, multiple winner in prototype series and James Winslow, winner of the Australian F3 championship, A1 GP driver for the team UK and in Indy-light but who will start his season in Brands Hatch because of his presence in Australie this week-end.

The organisation strengthen: To fill out the official staff, EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series and its coordinator Yves Guillou entrust the race direction to Patrice Ménochet. Jean-Marie Krempf will become one of the Stewards while Michel Brun will once again assure the scruiteenering.

What: Nogaro 200

Where: Nogaro (Gers, France), Circuit Paul Armagnac

When: April 6-9

TV diffusions: MOTORS TV
TV SCHEDULE (all times GMT+1)
-ELITE Sprint, Sunday, 4:35pm (40 minutes)
-ELITE/OPEN Endurance, Monday, 7pm (70 minutes)
-Highlights: Friday the 13th of April 7:45pm (72 minutes)

Circuit: road course of 3,636 kilometers (2,259 miles) 2011
Pole Positions: Eric Hélary (Elite) and Vincent Gonneau (Open) 2011
Winners: Lucas Lasserre (Elite Sprint and Endurance), Romain Fournillier (Open Sprint) and Emmanuel Brigand (Open Endurance)


From left, Eric Hélary, Lucas Lasserre and Romain Thievin celebrate on the podium at Nogaro last year.

-Practice 1 11:05-11:50am (April 6), Practice 2 2:55-3:40pm (April 6)
-Elite qualifying 1 11:00-11:15am (April 7), Open qualifying 2 3:15-3:30pm (April 7)
-Elite Sprint 9:40-10:05am (April 8)
-Endurance 11:05am-12:05pm (April 9), Open Sprint 4:20-4:45pm (April 9)


The race: Since the beginning of RACECAR Series in 2009, the championship always started in Nogaro. It is the 4th edition but the first one of the NOGARO 200.

The format: There will be 25 cars on the both grids ELITE and OPEN. Drivers of both categories will share cars during the private practices and then will each qualify. 1 ELITE Sprint, 1 ELITE/OPEN Endurance and 1 OPEN Sprint will follow.

The place: The circuit Paul Armagnac is made of 14 turns for a total length of 3,636 km (2,259 miles). Located near an aerodrome, this is the first permanent French track, opened on the 3rd of October 1960. The Coupes de Pâques are traditionally the launching event of the season.

Victories: Sylvain Noel (Sprint OPEN 2009), Mike Parisy (Sprint ELITE 2010), Eric Helary (Endurance ELITE 2010), Romain Fournillier (Sprint OPEN 2010 and 2011), Jerome Laurin (Endurance OPEN 2010), Lucas Lasserre (Sprint 2009 and 2011 and Endurance ELITE 2011) and Emmanuel Brigand (Endurance OPEN 2011).

Pole positions: Sylvain Noel (ELITE et OPEN 2009), Mike Parisy (Sprint ELITE 2010), Bruno Cosin (Endurance 2010), Eric Helary (ELITE 2011) et Romain Fournillier (OPEN 2010 and 2011)

Next stage: Brands Hatch (United Kingdom) The EURO-RACECAR NASCAR Touring Series’ second event will happen in Brands Hatch, near London (U.K.). Entrants will use the “short” track of 1,929 km (1,198 miles) supporting a DTM event. Last year Eric Helary (Helary Racing Team) won the 2 ELITE races when Vincent Gonneau (Gonneau Racing) and Emmanuel Brigand (Helary Racing Team) shared the OPEN victories.

Official Release
April 3, 2012 - 11:15am

Monday, April 2, 2012

When The #18 M&M’S Car Wins
You Could Win Big

M&M’S Racing Announces Its “When We Win, You Could Win” Sweepstakes
Race Fans are Invited to Enter an Instant Win Game & Sweepstakes Combo

With the Sprint Cup Series now underway, fans are gearing up for another exciting season of NASCAR racing. M&M’S Racing is celebrating the season with the “When We Win, You Could Win” sweepstakes, which features instant-win prizes and the chance to win a 2012 Toyota Camry each time the #18 M&M’S car wins a race.

Once fans register and enter the sweepstakes at the “When We Win, You Could Win” site, they are automatically eligible for the Instant Win Game. Each time the #18 M&M’S car wins, a panel of judges will conduct a drawing, selecting one lucky grand prize winner.

The prizing breakdown is as follows:

  • GRAND PRIZE: Six (6) grand prize winners will win a 2012 Toyota Camry when the #18 M&M’S Car wins

  • 1st PRIZE: Six hundred fifty (650) first place winners will receive a set of two M&M’S Racing 16 oz. Tervis Tumblers w/ Lid

  • 2nd PRIZE: Five hundred (500) second place winners will receive a $25 Superstore Gift Certificate

  • 3rd PRIZE: Two hundred fifty (250) third place winners will receive an M&M’S Racing Branded Backpack

  • 4th PRIZE: One Thousand (1,000) fourth place winners will receive M&M’S Racing Earbud Headphones
Submissions are open now through November 21st at

Blog Contest:

Now for more great news, M&M’S Racing provided NASCAR Race Mom with some great prizes to run a blog contest! There will be one big winner.

The grand prize winner will receive a $50 Visa Gift Card, a Ms. Brown ‘Not Your Average Chocolate’ M&M’S Blanket and some yummy M&M’S. (ARV $70.00)

Entering is easy. However, please be sure to follow the instructions below to be entered. There are many ways to enter; but you only need one entry to win!

Giveaway Guidelines:

Giveaway ends Wednesday, April 13, 2012.
  • The grand prize consists of a $50 Visa Gift Card, a Ms. Brown ‘Not Your Average Chocolate’ M&M’S Blanket and some yummy M&M’S. (Prize Fulfillment will be handled by contest sponsor)

Main Entry: – Leave a comment on this post regarding what you do to make your race day more enjoyable. You can do this entry once daily, but you must complete this entry at least once in order for the extra entries to count.

Extra One-Time Entries:
  • * Follow me (@zwriter) on twitter - and leave a comment on this post with your twitter identification. If you are already a follower, just leave a comment with your twitter identification. (One-time only)

  • * Follow Ms. Green M&M's (@mmsgreen) on twitter - and leave a comment on this post with your twitter identification. If you are already a follower, just leave a comment with your twitter identification. (One-time only)

  • * Follow M&M's Racing on Facebook and leave a comment on this post with your facebook identification. If you are already a follower, just leave a comment with your facebook identification. (One-time only)

You can earn one extra entry per day:
  • Tweet using the words "When The #18 M&M’S Car Wins - You Could Win Big ; go to for details (Please retweet) #nascar #contest"; then come back to this post and comment leaving the link to your tweet. (once per day)

  • Post on your Facebook wall, “I entered to win a $50 Visa Gift Card, a Ms. Brown ‘Not Your Average Chocolate’ M&M’S Blanket and some yummy M&M’S. It was easy to enter at Check it out. ” then come back to this post and comment leaving the link to post. (once per day)

  • Last but by no means least; leave a comment about Kyle Busch and his racing performance, M&Ms, or Ms. Brown and how she contributes to the team. (once per day)
Important: You must publicly follow the NASCAR Race Mom blog (with Google Friend Connect on right side bar) before entering this contest.


*** Important - Each entry must be left in a separate comment. (Example - I follow via GFC would be one separate comment; Kyle Busch races the #18 would be another separate comment)

***Off topic – generic comments (such as “hope I win”) will be disqualified from the competition.

  1. Make sure there is a way for NRM to contact you - if your email address is not on your profile or you are not a blogger, you may leave it in your comment. NRM hates to disqualify a potential winner because there is not a way to contact that winner – I will need your email address to contact you, should you be the winner.

  2. The winner will be chosen by

  3. The winner will be announced on this post and be notified by email; if the winner does not respond WITHIN 7 DAYS, another winner might be chosen.

  4. NASCAR Race Mom not responsible for missing or incorrect contact information.

Enjoy yourselves with this contest, and please share with your friends, family, co-workers. Above all - remember that M&M'S makes race day more fun!

Disclosure: NASCAR Race Mom was compensated by M&M’S® with product (customized M&M’s) in a previous promotion. NRM would have been pleased to share this news with my readers without said compensation.

Update: NASCAR Race Mom received a package from the desk of Ms. Brown, M&M’s Chief Chocolate Officer. Inside, NRM was please to find some delectable milk chocolate originals and Ms. Brown’s signature glasses. I cannot wait to enjoy them and make my race day even more special!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Junior Johnson Hospitalized

NASCAR legend Junior Johnson is being treated at Duke Hospital and is reported in stable condition.

Specific information about his health is not being released. Johnson, 80, is a retired moonshiner in the Wilkes County who became one of the early superstars of NASCAR in the 1950s and 1960s. He won 50 NASCAR races before retiring in 1966.

NASCAR Race Mom had the honor of interviewing Mr. Johnson a couple years back. He is truly a gentleman.

Please keep Junior Johnson in your thoughts and prayers for a speedy recovery.