Saturday, November 28, 2015

#nascar Fanfest Highlights

Las Vegas Motor Speedway will put the "fan" in Fanfest when it kicks off NASCAR Champion's Week on Wednesday, Dec. 2, at Fremont Street Experience with a free event featuring all 16 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers, including the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion.

#nascar Fanfest Highlights Champion's Week

Beginning at 2 p.m., the drivers will walk a red carpet through the crowd en route to the Third Street Stage. The highlight of Fanfest, which is hosted by Las Vegas Motor Speedway, will be a NASCAR Jeopardy-type game show involving all 16 Chase drivers. Fans will be chosen through local media outlets and LVMS social media to join the drivers on stage during the show.

"Each year, Fanfest is one of the highlights of Champion's Week," said LVMS president Chris Powell. "It gives the fans a chance to get close to the top drivers in NASCAR and a chance to see these drivers in a much more relaxed environment than they would during a NASCAR race. And with this year's format, we'll also find out which ones know their sport the best.

#nascar Fanfest Highlights Champion's Week

"This event has grown into one of the best fan events in NASCAR and we're very appreciative of our friends at Boyd Gaming, Sprint and Coca-Cola who make it possible for us to put on this show each year."

Fanfest will mark the first public appearance in Las Vegas by the 16 drivers who qualified for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. The week packed full of activities will culminate with the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Awards Ceremony on Friday, Dec. 4, at Wynn Las Vegas.

For additional information, please call LVMS at (702) 644-4444 or visit Follow LVMS on Facebook and Twitter.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

NASCAR Crowned Three 2015 Champions

All Three Champions have a Winning Arca History

 NASCAR Crowned Three 2015 Champions

Kyle Busch won the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship by winning at Homestead in the final race of 2015 season.

“I don’t know if I quite understand life yet, but there’s something to be said about this year.” — Kyle Busch, on winning his first NASCAR Sprint Cup title just nine months after a broken right leg and left foot in a crash at Daytona nearly ended his season

Chris Buescher clinched the NASCAR XFINITY Series championship at Homestead Saturday.

“I was a little bit nervous, but all things considered, that is exactly what we needed to do. We knew we were capable of doing this.”- Chris Buescher

In the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Erik Jones drove to the championship in a Kyle Busch-owned truck Friday.

“I think a lot of it was just being with a great team here in Kyle Busch Motorsports and bringing great Tundras to the race track every week,” said Jones. “I think there were definitely times in the year when I didn’t think we’d be able to do this and looking back and seeing the deficit we were in at some points and just being able to really pull together and make this all happen here at the end of the year, it was just so, so special for everybody here. I couldn’t think of a better way to thank them.”

All three new NASCAR champions have combined to make seventy (70) ARCA Racing Series starts with eight Menards Pole Awards and 14 victories.

ARCA Racing Series releases 2016 schedule

The ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards will race 20 times in 2016, including eight races on superspeedways, nine on short tracks, two on dirt and one on a road course. The full schedule has been announced over the last few weeks.

The season will mark the third consecutive season with a 20-race schedule. ARCA raced 21 races in 2013 and 19 in 2011 and 2012. 

“We are pleased to announce our full and complete schedule,” ARCA President Ron Drager said. “We feel we have once again put together a schedule that highlights the diversity of the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards. We are excited for the start of the new season.”

The series will kick off the 2016 campaign – as it has for more than 50 years – by racing at Daytona International Speedway. The race will be right before the NASCAR Sprint Unlimited and will help christen the newly-renovated Daytona Rising project.

The only different track on the schedule from 2015 is the return of the ARCA Racing Series to Madison, Wisconsin for Father’s Day Weekend. There are other changes to the schedule, however. For example, ARCA’s Chicagoland date shifts to Thursday night, September 15 in primetime as part of a huge weekend of racing, which includes the kick-off for the Sprint Cup Chase Sunday, Sept. 18, 2016. The weekend also includes the Camping World Truck Series and the Xfinity Series.

The road course race at New Jersey will be on Saturday, May 28, instead of the Sunday afternoon race it has been the last few years. And, the race on the mile-dirt at the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds is going to be a night race.

In addition, the ARCA Racing Series will celebrate milestone races with the 75th series event at Toledo Speedway and 99th and 100th races at Salem Speedway in southern Indiana. The series will have companion races with all three of NASCAR’s top touring series at one time or another in 2016, starting with the Daytona race in February, plus share Iowa Speedway with the Verizon Indy Car Series in July.

The race at Winchester Speedway will once again coincide with the King of the Wing sprint cars.

The return to Madison International Speedway in Wisconsin is good for the series’ presenting sponsor, Drager said. “It was important for us to schedule a race in the Menards market,” Drager said. “Last year, we did not have a race in either Minnesota or Wisconsin and this year, we decided to go back. We are definitely looking forward to racing again at Madison and the upper Midwest.”

The 2016 season will be part of ARCA’s 64th consecutive season of competition since 1953.

Before moving ahead with the 2016 schedule, series officials will celebrate the 2015 season one final time with the annual banquet in downtown Indianapolis on Saturday, Dec. 12. For complete details, visit

Here are the races that have been announced thus far:

Saturday 13-Feb Daytona
Saturday 9-Apr Nashville
Friday 29-Apr Talladega
Sunday 22-May Toledo
Friday 3-Jun Pocono
Friday 10-Jun Michigan
Sunday 26-Jun Winchester
Saturday 9-Jul Iowa
Friday 29-Jul Pocono
Sunday 21-Aug Springfield
Sunday 4-Sep DuQuoin
Thursday 15-Sep Chicago
Friday 23-Sep Kentucky
Friday 14-Oct Kansas
*More dates to be announced

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Ford Chip Ganassi Racing Announces Ford GT Driver Line-up for IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship

Hand-USA, Westbrook-UK, Briscoe- Australia and Müller- Germany

Drivers Ryan Briscoe, Richard Westbrook, Dirk Müller and Joey Hand have been selected for full-time rides in the two Ford GTs that will compete in the full IMSA WeatherTech schedule next year.

Hand and Müller will co-drive the No. 66 Ford GT, while Briscoe and Westbrook take the reins of the No. 67 Ford GT. Fans of Ford lore and sports car racing will immediately take note of the historic significance of the car numbers – the original predecessor of the Ford GT, the Ford GT-40, won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1966 and 1967. Ford marks the 50th anniversary of that first significant win with the return of the Ford GT to Le Mans in 2016.

The IMSA lineup for Daytona represents a true global effort, with drivers from the United States (Hand), United Kingdom (Westbrook), Australia (Briscoe) and Germany (Müller).

“We can’t say enough about how proud we are to present this group of drivers,” said Raj Nair, Ford Group Vice President, Global Product Development and Chief Technical Officer. “This goes straight to the heart of everything we do at Ford, and selecting the right drivers for the Ford GT racing program is just as important as building the car. We believe we have the best car, and now we have the best drivers to match.”

“What I look for in a driver first of all is heart,” said Chip Ganassi, owner of Ford Chip Ganassi Racing. “At this level, all drivers are fast. We want drivers that can work well with others. Drivers that have endurance car experience. Drivers that have been to Le Mans. All these things add up. It’s a team of drivers that act like they’ve been together for quite a while already.”

While Ford's history with sports car racing stretches back to the 1960s, today's factory effort plays an important role in developing Ford Motor Company's EcoBoost technology. Ford's twin-turbo 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 raced to three wins with Ford Chip Ganassi Racing, including a victory in the prestigious 12 Hours of Sebring, seven podiums and more than 15,000 endurance racing miles in its first season of IMSA competition in 2014. In 2015, the team and engine won the Rolex 24 At Daytona and added another win at Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in the Lone Star Le Mans.

The all-new Ford GT supercar is the culmination of years of Ford innovations in lightweighting, aerodynamics and ultra-efficient Ford EcoBoost engines. Ford announced it would return to GT racing with the Ford GT last June at the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Ganassi’s team has captured seven IMSA championship titles, 46 wins and has six overall victories at the Rolex 24 At Daytona.


Joey Hand Returns to Ford Chip Ganassi Racing: Hand, widely considered one of the best road racers in the world, returns for his second full-time season with Ford Chip Ganassi Racing after helping the team finish fourth in the 2015 IMSA Prototype points standings. Hand co-drove to the win at the Lone Star Le Mans at COTA and recorded five podium finishes, including a second-place in-class finish at the season finale at Road Atlanta. Prior to that, he won the 2011 Rolex 24 At Daytona in his first of three appearances with the team (2011-13 Rolex 24 At Daytonas). Hand led the most laps in the 2011 event, pacing 116 of the No. 01 car’s race-leading 231 laps. He led the race six times overall en route to the team’s fourth of six wins in the sports car classic. He previously competed in the DTM series from 2012-14 and had been in the American Le Mans Series from 2004-11, where he won two 12 Hours of Sebring titles and the 2011 GT Driver Championship.

Ryan Briscoe Back at Ganassi: Twelve-time IMSA and eight-time Verizon IndyCar Series race winner Ryan Briscoe rejoins the Ganassi team after most recently running the No. 8 NTT DATA car in the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series for the team. Briscoe began his IndyCar racing career in 2005 driving the No. 33 for Target Chip Ganassi Racing (TCGR) when it was a three-car team with Scott Dixon and Darren Manning, and was also a driver of the team’s 2005 Rolex 24 At Daytona entry. Over the past 10 years, Briscoe has driven for multiple IMSA teams, recording 12 wins over 36 races, and most recently won the 2015 Rolex 24 A t Daytona and the 2015 12 Hours of Sebring in the GTLM class.

Dirk Müller Brings Experience to Ford Program: Sports car veteran Dirk Müller began his IMSA career 17 years ago and has competed in 111 races in the series. Müller has recorded 18 wins and 30 poles during his tenure and most recently competed in a full-season IMSA entry for BMW Team RLL in the GTLM class in 2014.

About Richard Westbrook: Following a promising karting and single-seater career, Westbrook switched to GT racing and later moved on to sign a factory contract deal with Porsche. In 2009, Westbrook won the FIA GT2 Championship. In 2011, he signed with Chevrolet as a factory driver and spent the next five years driving for the manufacturer as part of both their GT and prototype programs. Westbrook has recorded eight wins, including the 2013 12 Hours of Sebring, the 2014 and 2015 Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen, and eight poles over his nine-year sports car career.

Can Martin Truex Jr. Take the Underdog
#NASCAR Championship Win

Martin Truex Jr. Is Homestead’s Hidden Heavyweight

Martin Truex Jr. might be the Holly Holm to Kevin Harvick’s Ronda Rousey in Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Considered the Cinderella of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season due to his struggles last year and the fact he’s the only driver for Furniture Row Racing, based far from NASCAR’s North Carolina hotbed in Denver, Colorado, Truex might actually be the driver to beat at Homestead.

In 10 starts at the Miami oval, the No. 78 Chevrolet driver has no wins, three top fives (30%), seven top 10s (70%) and a 10.0 average finish (second among active drivers). What sets him apart from the rest of the Championship 4 at Homestead is his loop data success. He tops the Championship 4 drivers in Homestead average running position (9.0, second among active drivers), driver rating (106.6, third) and average Green Flag speed (162.357 mph, first).

A Truex championship would make him the first title-winner from New Jersey and just the second from the Northeast (Bill Rexford, New York).

Additionally, Truex would be the first driver from a one-car team to win an NSCS championship since Alan Kulwicki achieved the feat in 1992.

Truex would also join Bobby Labonte, Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick as the fourth driver to earn a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series championship.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Can Kyle Busch Celebrate
as #NASCAR Come-Back Kid

Unbreakable: Kyle Busch Aims To Finish Championship
Run Nine Months After Daytona Accident

Kyle Busch’s season has been so improbable, even M. Night Shyamalan couldn’t make it up.

A mere nine months after breaking his right leg and fracturing his left foot in an accident at Daytona, Busch will race for a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Busch had cooled off since winning four-of-five races including three in a row earlier in the season, but started to heat up again as the only driver to log a top-five finish in all three Eliminator Round races.

Of the Championship 4 drivers, Busch has had the least success at Homestead. In 10 starts at the South Florida track he has no wins, one top five (10.0%) and three top 10s (30.0%). Busch owns three finishes worse than 30th at Homestead, including a 39th-place finish there last year. In fact, his 23.1 Homestead average finish ranks 25th among active drivers.

If Busch finishes ahead of Kevin Harvick, Jeff Gordon and Martin Truex Jr., he’ll become the first driver to ever pilot a Toyota to a NSCS title, giving the manufacturer a driver’s championship in all three national series. Coincidentally, Busch won Toyota its first NSCS race at Atlanta in 2008.

Busch would also join Bobby Labonte, Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick as the fourth driver to earn a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series championship.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Jeff Gordon's Drive for #NASCAR 5

Still Alive In The Drive For 5: Gordon Can Walk Away
With Sprint Cup Title On Sunday

Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 just might be the biggest race of Jeff Gordon’s life. And it just so happens that it’ll likely be his last.

If he can finish ahead of Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. in the final event of his last full-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season, Gordon will walk away with his fifth NSCS championship. Already fourth on the all-time championships list, the No. 24 Chevrolet driver would end his career behind only Jimmie Johnson (six championships), Richard Petty (seven) and Dale Earnhardt (seven) in the NASCAR record books.

Luckily for Gordon, he’s performed well at Homestead-Miami Speedway where the Ford EcoBoost 400 will be held. In 16 starts at the 1.5-mile track, he boasts one win (6.2%), seven top fives (43.8%) and 12 top 10s (75.0%). He finished 10th at Homestead last year after leading a race-high 161 laps.

Gordon gutted his way into the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup as its 13th seed, qualifying on points. He’s upped his performance in NASCAR’s playoffs, leading all drivers in average finish (7.7) and top-10 finishes (8, tied with Joey Logano), highlighted by his win at Martinsville.

A Gordon championship would not only be his first since 2001, but his first in the Chase era (2004-present). If he wins the title on Sunday, Gordon’s 14-year gap between championships would surpass 2016 NASCAR Hall of Fame Inductee Terry Labonte’s record 12-season drought between titles.

Gordon’s Hendrick Motorsports team already owns the NSCS record with 11 NSCS titles.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Is Harvick the #NASCAR Championship Favorite?

Harvick Hopes To Become Second Driver
To Win Consecutive Crowns

Defending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series title-winner Kevin Harvick enters Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 Championship Round race (3 p.m. ET on NBC) as the favorite to take home his second straight series crown. If he finishes ahead of fellow Championship 4 drivers Jeff Gordon, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr., Harvick will become the 11th person in NASCAR history to win consecutive NSCS titles.

Harvick heads to Homestead as its reigning race winner. He had to finish first to win the championship last year, otherwise runner-up Ryan Newman would have taken home the title. In 14 career starts at Homestead, Harvick has one win (7.1%), six top fives (42.9%) and 12 top 10s (85.7%). His 7.6 average finish at the 1.5-mile track ranks first among active drivers. He also owns the fourth-best driver rating (102.5) and average running position (10.0) among active drivers at Homestead.

At Phoenix on Sunday, Harvick placed second – his 15th top-two finish of the season and the most in the NSCS since Jeff Gordon posted 19 in 1998.

A loop statistician’s dream, Harvick leads the NSCS in average running position (7.3; Next-best driver: Kyle Busch, 9.2), fastest laps (1,370; Next-best driver, Brad Keselowski, 650), laps led (2,248; Next-best driver: Joey Logano, 1,359) and driver rating (118.9; Next-best driver: Kyle Busch, 107.1).

A Harvick championship would be the third for Stewart-Haas Racing, which has won titles with Harvick (2014) and Tony Stewart (2011).

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Moses Returns to His Desert Roots

The 48th BudLight Score BAJA 1000 - November 20-21, 2015

Now a days, Moses Smith happily goes to work every day as the manufacturer of the popular open-wheel racecar known as the Formula Mazda. As the owner of Texas Autosports, a full-service Formula Mazda Racecar prep shop, Moses continues to “live the dream.”

Moses talks to his parents
after a Baja Race in the 1980s
What most fans do not realize is that Moses’ dream was born in the early 1980s. He was on a 'pit crew' by the time he was just three years old. He and his father, Paul would work long hours at the race shop of Off-Road Racer Malcolm Vinje*. There he learned all about desert racing by working on the Baja 1000 Class 5 and then Class 7S race machines.

Moses’ family outings in the Southern California deserts further his interest. The thrill of his own three-wheeler and his father’s dune buggy fueled Moses’ love for going fast.

Unbelievably, before the age of ten, Moses had progress in his race crew duties to include driving the chase vehicles from checkpoint to checkpoint solo. The youngster’s feet could barely touch the Baja Bug’s pedals, but that did not discourage him as he focused on pushing that clutch in far enough to shift smoothly.

“Off road racing was my first love, that’s what I wanted to do when I grew up.” Moses recalled. “I have had been very fortunate to have driven a lot of different racecars over the years, but Off Road racing and Baja has always eluded me. It has been on my list for as long as I can remember. I am pumped to finally get my chance in the dirt!”

Moses Smith began his racing career in the extremely competitive Southern California Karting Region. Moses clearly set himself apart from his competition both on and off the track. Winning the California State Championship and the SDKA Junior Sportsman Championship proved his on track abilities, while also holding the prestigious title of the youngest member of the famed San Diego Karting Association Board of Directors.

Star Mazda Podium -- Luis Schiavo (left), Moses Smith (middle),
and Michael McDowell (right) -- at Road Atlanta 2003
With karting accomplishments in hand, Moses worked to further his motorsports goals. Moses moved into full size race cars the hard way. As a mechanic for the Skip Barber Racing School and other prominent professional race teams, the young driver was able to learn the intricacies of the sport while biding his time to get behind the wheel.

The opportunity was not far off. In 2000, Moses got his career break competing in a limited schedule of Formula Mazda (FM) events. Moses parleyed that limited schedule into become one of the top Formula Mazda drivers on the pro circuit.

In 2002, Moses missed winning the North American Star Mazda Pro Series, by just one point. However, he won the Star Mazda West Coast Championship. In 2003, Moses tested in the Toyota Atlantic car and entered an Infiniti Pro Series event.

Never one to stay stagnant, Moses became a Star Mazda team owner in 2004. He opened his own online store in January of 2006.

In September 2009, Moses acquired all support and manufacturing rights for the approximately 300 Formula Mazda rotary-powered race cars currently in use across North America, as well as the MSR sports racer, a full-bodied version of the FM.

From 2007 to 2011, Moses competed in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West. He finished third in the championship points standing his last season. Further, he was voted the series Most Popular Driver in four consecutive years!

Moses Smith sits in his #16 Hasa Pool Products K&N Pro Series West car.

Moses’ long history in the sport of racing has not dampened his excitement and eagerness.

“Over my career as a driver I’ve had some pretty amazing teammates, but we were there on business. This race I am paired with a couple of very special team mates. The Entwistle, father and son team, have been racing Formula Mazda with me over the past year.” Moses stated enthusiastically. “We were learning, and chasing a championship, although we had fun, there was still a serious undertone. This race we get to have FUN, and experience something that only an elite few have done before. Don’t get me wrong…we ARE going to win our class…haha or have a blast trying to anyway”

You can follow Moses and the team as their #1409 Sportsman 1400 competes in the 48th Baja 1000 by following it via live streaming at The challenging course will start and finish in Ensenada.

Moses Smith’s Career Highlights

2015 48th BudLight Score BAJA 1000
2013 Rolex 24 At Daytona in the SRT Viper
2013 Grand-Am Sports Car Series, Class GT Debut
2011 Third Place Finish K&N Pro Series West Championship
2008-2011K&N Pro Series West Most Popular Driver Awards
2007-2011 K&N Pro Series West Series Driver
2009 Formula Mazda Manufacturer
2007 Grand-Am KONI Challenge Debut
2006 Official Standard Formula Mazda Dealer
2004 Star Mazda Team Owner
2003 Infiniti Pro Series Debut
2003 Toyota Atlantic Debut
2002 Star Mazda Pro Championship Runner-Up
2002 Star Mazda Rising Star Award
2002 Star Mazda West Coast Champion
2001 Star Mazda West Coast "Rookie of the Year"
1992 IKF California State Champion
1991 SCCA Class Champion
1989 Former SDKA Board of Directors Member
1980 Pit Crew / Shop Worker for Malcolm Vinje

*1982 CLASS 5 Champion - Malcolm Vinje/Mark Hansen; 1996 CLASS 7S Champion - Malcolm Vinje/Mark Hansen; 1999 CLASS 7S Champion - Malcolm Vinje.

Monday, November 16, 2015

A Battle-Tested, Worthy #NASCAR Champion???

NASCAR announced last year, a new championship format that they stated would put a greater emphasis on winning races all season long. It also expanded the current Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field to 16 drivers, and implemented a new round-by-round advancement format designed to “reward a battle-tested, worthy champion.”

However, the four remaining NASCAR Combatants for the Cup have not won the most races in 2015. If we were to place the prominence on winning races all year, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase finalists would be:

  • Joey Logano with six wins
  • Jimmie Johnson with five wins
  • Matt Kenseth with five wins
  • Kyle Bush with four wins. 

One right out of four is not good. 

“We have arrived at a format that makes every race matter even more, diminishes points racing, puts a premium on winning races and concludes with a best-of-the-best, first-to-the-finish line showdown race – all of which is exactly what fans want,” said Brian France, NASCAR chairman and CEO stated in 2014.

However, to NASCAR Race Mom this format fosters luck more than racing skill; be it good luck or bad luck. Whether you happen to peak or faltered during a three-race period can make or break your entire season.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. and crew chief Greg Ives celebrate after winning the rain-shortened
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500.

Does the Chase make the last ten races of the year more unpredictable and thereby more exciting? Well yes, but at what cost. Whether you cite the Kenseth / Logano clash(s); Kevin Harvick’s restart wreck that helped secure him a spot in the next round, or even Mother Nature shortening the last chance race to get into the finals - - - the opportunity to alter the outcome of the championship becomes more attainable. 

With just one win this season, Martin Truex Jr. is among
the final four Chase drivers.  (Jonathan Moore/Getty Image)

As it is, NASCAR Race Mom will be watching the last 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup next week with uncertainty. Jeff Gordon (1-2015 Win) will battle Martin Truex Jr. (1-2015 Win), Kevin Harvick (3-2015 Wins), and Kyle Busch (4- 2015 Wins) for the Cup championship.  I am sure that Homestead it will be an exciting season finale, hopefully devoid of any further shenanigans. Nevertheless, our 2015 Sprint Cup champion will not epitomize NASCAR’s most winning-est driver of the year and probably not be the “best of the 2015 best.”

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Crown Royal’s 2016
“Your Hero’s Name Here” program

Honoring People Who Make A Difference Every Day #CrownHeroes


As the cars begin to roll into the Phoenix International Raceway, this event marks the second official weekend for the search of the 2016 Brickyard 400 race namesake. Crown Royal recently kicked off their “Your Hero’s Name Here” program, which honors a deserving American hero by re-naming the July NASCAR race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in his or her honor.

Concluding a weeklong celebration of heroes, individuals across the country were recognized as inaugural nominees for the program. Each individual was given access to a special experience – receiving tickets to award shows, professional football games and the upcoming Phoenix NASCAR race.

With the help from Phoenix-based charity ‘Packages From Home’  a group of local heroes will be in attendance who serve as working dog handlers at Luke Air Force Base and are some of the first program nominees. 

Packages From Home's mission is to send care and comfort packages to deployed American military heroes who are stationed in active duty theaters around the world, as well as to facilitate activities that elevate morale of all veterans

Celebrating the 10th year, Crown Royal has honored individuals who go above and beyond while giving back to their communities – from firefighters and military personnel, to police officers and first responders, by offering them an once-in-a-lifetime experience during race weekend.

Consumers twenty-one (21) and older, please take a moment and visit to nominate your own heroes for a chance to have the Brickyard 400 renamed in their honor. Nominations will be accepted through Feb. 28 and five finalists will be chosen with a chance to win naming rights to the 2016 Brickyard 400.

The grand prize winner of Crown Royal’s “Your Hero’s Name Here Program” will receive naming rights to the Brickyard 400®. Held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 24, 2016, the race represents the ultimate celebration of heroes and the winner will be provided with an once-in-a-lifetime VIP experience.

Learn about the Packages From Home organization

Click Here to Nominate a Hero

Must be 21 or older to vote. 1 vote per day.
Please Drink Responsibly.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

PIR's Casino Arizona 100 will Crown the next #NASCAR #KNWEST Champion

The 2015 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West will conclude and a champion will be crowned with the Casino Arizona 100 on November 12 at Phoenix International Raceway. The NASCAR K&N Pro Series, which includes the East and the West, is the top step in NASCAR’s developmental ladder before drivers progress to the three national series.

West drivers go around the Phoenix International Raceway in 2014.  Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images for NASCAR
West drivers go around the Phoenix International Raceway in 2014.
Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images for NASCAR

Driver Entry List

0 Bobby Hillis
3 Kaz Grala*
4 Ronnie Bassett, Jr, 
5 J.J. Haley*
6 James Bickford
7 Noah Gragson*
8 Johnny Borneman
9 Christian Celaya*
9 Ryan Partridge*
12 Harrison Burton*
13 Todd Souza
14 Matt Levin*
16 Brandon McReynolds
17 David Mayhew
18 Bill Kann
20 Spencer Davis*
21 Alex Schutte*
26 Greg Pursley
27 Gracin Raz*
30 Ron Norman*
31 Johnny White*
33 Nicole Behar*
36 Colton Nelson*
40 Travis Miller*
41 Landon Cassill
44 Austin Reed*
48 Clay Green*
52 Dalton Sargeant*
54 Todd Gilliland*
55 Blake Williams*
61 Brett Thompson
71 Christian McGhee*
81 D.J. Kennington
84 Rich DeLong III
91 William Byron*
96 Ben Kennedy
99 Chris Eggleston


Harrison Burton at All American Speedway in Roseville, California  Courtesy of Jeff Burton Autosports
Harrison Burton at All American Speedway in Roseville, California
Courtesy of Jeff Burton Autosports

Drivers of Interest

Chris Eggleston is currently leading the K&N Pro Series West Points. Noah Gragson is second in points a mere 4 points back. Gracin Raz, the winner of the last event is in third place 9 points behind the leader.

Harrison Burton, 15, made his series debut in the NAPA 150 with his father’s race team, Jeff Burton Autosports. He started from the twelfth position and finished a respectable eleventh. Harrison is the son of former Sprint Cup driver and current NBC Sports analyst Jeff Burton.

Fans will be excited to see the return of 2011 & 2014 K&N Pro Series Champion Greg Pursley. Pursley has three wins at the Phoenix International Raceway.

Landon Cassill is a regular in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and the Xfinity Series. In three NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race back in 2007 and 2015, Landon recorded one top-five and 2 top-ten finishes.

Dalton Sargeant, a 17-year-old NASCAR Next driver finished fourth in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Series. He has also tallied three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts. Dalton won the K&N Pro Series West race in Bakersfield last March.

Todd Gilliland will make his K&N Pro Series West debut in the No. 54 Toyota with assistance from Kyle Busch Motorsports. The 15-year-old third-generation driver is the youngest winner in the ARCA Racing Series, having won at Toledo in May at just fifteen years and two days. His grandfather is Butch Gilliland and his father is David Gilliland.

"D. J." Kennington is a Canadian driver. He currently competes in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, winning the 2010 and 2012 series championships.

William Byron is the 2015 K&N Pro Series East Champion and always a threat for the win. Byron led the championship standings since the third race of the season. He completed the season with four wins, five top fives and 11 top 10s in 14 starts to become the fourth youngest champion in series history.

Ben Kennedy is the great-grandson of NASCAR founder Bill France Sr. He currently competes full-time in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, driving the No. 11 Toyota Tundra for Red Horse Racing. In 2013, Ben has two wins in the K&N Pro Series East.

Can Chris Eggleston close the deal and take the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West championship to give Owner Bill McAnally his sixth series title? Getty Images for NASCAR
Can Chris Eggleston close the deal & take the NASCAR KNWEST Championship
to give Owner Bill McAnally his sixth series title? Getty Images for NASCAR

This exciting line-up of NASCAR talent will thrill the crowd attending this event as the checkered flag reveals the 2015 K&N Pro Series West Champion.

The series will qualify on Thursday 11/12 at 3:00 p.m. and race at 7:30 in the K&N Pro Series West Casino Arizona 100 .

Click Here for Live Coverage

Friday, November 6, 2015

Chip Ganassi Racing Teams Announce Generation Ganassi Driver Identification Program

15-Year-Old Karting Champion Devlin Defrancesco Named First Recipient

Generation Ganassi Driver Identification Program

There have been few bigger proponents of young racing talent anywhere in the sport than Championship race Team Owner Chip Ganassi. For over 25 years he has identified, hired and developed some of the best young racing talent from all around the world. Subsequently, Chip Ganassi and his Chip Ganassi Racing Teams (CGRT) announced today the creation of the Generation Ganassi (Gen G) racing talent identification program, a mentorship that will look to identify and assist North America’s young and talented race car drivers.

The program identifies 13-18 year old drivers as “Ones to Watch” in the world of auto racing and offers professional guidance to aid in fostering their growth within the sport of auto racing.

The first recipient of the 2016 Generation Ganassi moniker is a 15-year-old driver from Canada named Devlin Defrancesco. Defrancesco has been racing karts since 2006 where he has had much success including winning the Canadian National Junior Championship in 2013, also named Vice-Champion of the CSAI Italian Championship and was third overall in the CIK FIA European Karting Championship. In 2015, he joined British racing team Carlin Motorsports to prepare for races in the FIA Formula 4 Championship. You can follow Devlin on Twitter (@DevlinD00) and on Instagram (devlindefran17). 

The 2016 Generation Ganassi Driver- Devlin Defrancesco.

“I couldn’t be happier to be the first recipient of the Generation Ganassi award. To be identified by Chip Ganassi is not only an honor but also something that I will use as motivation to live up to the standards that Chip and his organization has always had for their drivers. This is a big day for me.  Defrancesco stated. ”


  • Gen G - Generation Ganassi: Each year, CGRT will identify at least 10 young drivers from karting, sprint cars, modified, midgets, late model, etc. and each will be paired with one current CGRT driver, a CGRT racing competition person and also someone from CGRT business operations to help guide them through the turbulent waters of auto racing. In addition, each Gen G winner will get the Gen G logo to display on their car, helmet and firesuit. Gen G takes its name from the Generation X, Y and Z monikers given to new demographic groups. Gen G will now refer to the young race car driver that aspires to take racing from simply a passion to a profession.
  • A History of Spotting Talent: CGRT owner Chip Ganassi has a long history of identifying and developing young driver talent, from former drivers like Jimmy Vasser, Alex Zanardi and Juan Pablo Montoya to current talent like Scott Dixon, Jamie McMurray, Kyle Larson and Sage Karam. Ganassi drivers have won eight Rookie of the Year Awards with drivers Eddie Cheever (Verizon IndyCar Series), Zanardi (Verizon IndyCar Series), Montoya (Verizon IndyCar Series/NASCAR Sprint Cup Series), McMurray (NASCAR Sprint Cup Series) and Larson (NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series and K&N Pro Series East).
  • How To Be Considered: Gen G is open to any young drivers between the ages of 13-18 in any form of stock car or open wheel racing program anywhere in the country. Candidates must complete an online application process including basic background questions and a brief video essay answering why they should be selected to enter the program. Submission of a video that highlights their racing achievements, interaction with family and friends and personality is also encouraged. The application window for the first full class will be open today and the deadline for submissions Jan. 31, 2016 with the winners being announced in March 2016.

“I have always been very passionate about trying to give back to the racing community as it has given me so much throughout my life. I have always had a real interest in finding and trying to develop young racing talent and over the years have even experienced success in doing it. This is simply an effort to give young drivers a ‘leg up’ as they navigate the turbulent waters of auto racing. The hope is that a program like this can make a difference in some drivers’ careers. Chip Ganassi, Owner, Chip Ganassi Racing Teams reported.  ”

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Are NASCAR Penalties Too Inconsistent?

NASCAR Race Mom waited a while after hearing the penalties handed down from the “top of the NASCAR tower” yesterday regarding on track retaliation between two separate set of drivers, Matt Kenseth vs Joey Logano and Danica Patrick vs David Gilliland.

Are #NASCAR Penalties Too Inconsistent?

The inconsistency in the penalties sadden me. Matt received a two race suspension, while Danica was merely fined and docked points.

NASCAR appears to advocate the drama with their “boys have at it” proclamation. Therefore, the lack of strong leadership with a clear set of rule causes me concern for the sport I love.

I believe Rick Craven from ESPN explains my feelings best.

Joe Gibbs Racing has appealed NASCAR’s ruling. In a statement the team said:

The appeal will challenge the severity of the penalty which is believed to be inconsistent with previous penalties for similar on-track incidents. There will be no further comments from JGR personnel during the appeal process.

There is that word again . . . inconsistent. NASCAR had to do something; but did they go too far?

JGR’s appeal will be expedited, meaning Kenseth’s case will be heard by a three-person panel this week before Sunday’s race at Texas Motor Speedway. If he loses, he can make a plea to Final Appeals Officer Bryan Moss.

This NASCAR fan will wait to see if the governing body can make some sense of this senseless situation.

Monday, November 2, 2015

When Enough is Just Enough
Logano/Kenseth #nascar

When Enough is Just Enough - #nascar Martinsville

If you know NASCAR, you have heard about the most recent Logano / Kenseth fracas. Let me prefix this article by saying I am truly bias in favor of Kenseth. Logano raced in the K&N Pro Series when my son participated also. I was not impressed with the then youngster Logano’s antics, neither on nor off the track.

I personally witnessed bad decision making on Logano’s part without a thought about anyone other than Joey. He never uttered an apology nor show concern for his track victims’ well-being. However, I witnessed the seventeen-year-old boy Joey. Much could have changed in the now twenty-five-year-old race car driver.

On the other hand, I was honored to hang with Kenseth at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway Petty Experience a few years back. There I discovered a quiet, humble and caring individual who seem genuinely interested in the other person.

When Enough is Just Enough - #nascar Martinsville

Just in case you were not aware; on lap 454 of a scheduled 500-lap short track event in Martinsville, Joey Logano was in the lead and apparently cruising to his fourth consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup win. Kenseth whose car was damage earlier in the race by Logano’s teammate Brad Keselowski, drilled Logano in the left rear-quarter panel, sending both drivers violently out of the race.

Kenseth explained:

"Some days you get put in spots you don’t want to be in, for sure,” said Kenseth, “I had two chances to win in the last three weeks and got wrecked out of both of them going for the lead. One from him (Logano) and one from Brad. That’s disappointing. We should have never been in that spot trying to limp that car around and get the finish."

Logano commented:

“I think what happened at Kansas is a completely different deal,” said Logano, who with a 37th-place finish at Martinsville now ranks last among the eight remaining title contenders. "We were racing for the win and he blocks you a few times and then we raced hard and he blocked me the last time and we spun out. That’s what happened there. Here it was just a complete coward move, especially for a championship race car driver and race team. Just a complete coward. I don’t have anything else to say. It’s a chicken-you-know-what move to completely take out the leader when your race is over. We’ll move on.”

From the flamboyant cheers escalating out of the fans in the stands; I was of the belief that the aficionadas approved of the outcome of the Kenseth / Logano wreck. Therefore, I was shocked by my limited sampling poll regarding yesterday’s sprint cup scuffle:

60% Backing Kenseth
40% Behind Logano.

Okay, all that being said, here is NASCAR Race Mom’s opinion. (Least not forget - I am of predisposition).

I remember the 2009 NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown in Irwindale. I was there and my son was in the race, when Logano “attempted a move” that slammed the race leader into the wall and out of the race on the last lap. (Check out Logano’s explanation starting at 2:20 of the video below) – “He came out there to win and feels that he did that.”

Additionally, NASCAR Race Mom personally experienced, that a victim of Joey’s lack of driving dexterity should not expect any form of communication from the Logano camp.

“Slice Bread” has had to live up to high expectations that were placed upon him at a young age. Now after a rough career start, Joey is having his best season ever. This does not excuse his rough “win at all costs” attitude. Some drivers will refuse to simply move out of his way.

Further, Matt Kenseth was not unreasonable when he expressed his estimation that his run of ‘bad luck’ at the wheels of Logano and/or his teammate. Watching the Martinsville replay closely, you can see that Brad Keselowski didn’t just hit Matt once but twice before turning him. How much help Brad received from behind is not clear.

Therefore what is good for the goose is good for the gander right? It is more complicated than that. I heard Logano’s spotter emphatically re-inforce that Kenseth was “still down there” four times before the crash.

Could Kenseth have slowed to allow Logano to complete his pass; most certainly. Should he have? Well as a lap car, I would usually say yes.

However, as Logano’s spotter’s voice timbre frantically notified that Kenseth was ‘down there’, and Logano knew or should have known that Kenseth was not his friend. Logano – as a seasoned racer with a dominate car and over fifty laps remaining in the event – seriously, what was he thinking?

As a mother who has watched her son on the race track, intentional wrecking is never justified and/or never okay. Nevertheless, in this difficulty quandary, #IStandWithMatt. Sometimes enough is just enough.

This might just be the reality Joey Logano needs to continue on his rough road toward NASCAR greatness. While it cost Joey a NASCAR record of four consecutive wins, it did not rob him of an opportunity for a championship.

After the race, NASCAR officials summoned Kenseth, crew chief Jason Ratcliff and team owner Joe Gibbs to the NASCAR hauler for a discussion.  NASCAR Race Mom fears the ruling to come from NASCAR. As in most judgement calls, poor NASCAR will be wrong no matter how it proceeds.

When Enough is Just Enough - #nascar Martinsville

Nevertheless, the one thing all NASCAR Fans can all agree upon is the exhilarating thrill of watching the #24 Jeff Gordon take the checkered. If anything can take the focus of the Martinsville race back to the correct spotlight; four-time champion Jeff Gordon’s “Green-White-Checker” dual with Jamie McMurray did that in style.

Parting thought: 


When Enough is Just Enough - #nascar Martinsville


How come no one is commiserating about Danica Patrick running into the back of David Gilliland on multiple occasions during this same Sprint Cup auto race? It appears that Danica Patrick lost her patience with David Gilliland. Patrick and Gilliland also have a long history of clashes on the track, and the drivers managed to find each other multiple times along the half-mile oval. Talk about obvious and blatant . . . . is that okay NASCAR???

Photos by Getty Images