Outrun And Sega Rally Under Attack? (More Yakuza, Sonic)

Posted by imelda sovzky on Thursday, September 30, 2010

This is a good bit of investigative reporting by my buddy isamu on the ORA board.  I'm repeating this just for any readers not from that board...

OutRun Online Arcade is available on the Xbox 360 in any country.  On the PS3 however, it's only available in the UK store.  Well it turns out that he and many others have scoured the UK store to find the game removed altogether.  So basically OutRun 2 is not on the PS3 anymore.  What???

This isn't the first time that a downloadable game has been removed from an online store.  Paperboy, Root Beer Tapper, and other Midway classics have been sucked under (Midway went bankrupt).  Same thing with Yaris which was free BTW (it was a promo game).  You can redownload them again ONLY if you purchased it previously.  Presumably, the game is still on the server but it's not for sale for some reason which makes no sense because you're missing out on the opportunity to earn money...

I think we should all play OutRun Online Arcade on the Xbox 360 in memory.  Just cause we need to do SOMETHING and give Sumo Digital props for making the game more available to a larger crowd (although it wasn't a big seller).  People, you had no excuse to try out the demo cause it's right there in front of you...

To make things worse, Sega Rally Revo has been pulled from the PSN store too.  Yes, I know that Revo isn't considered a powerhouse Sega title, but it's still one of Sega's babies.  So that's two Sega racers gone.  I'm not 100% sure this is true, but I'll let you know if something comes up.

Why would something like this happen all of a sudden?  Does Sega want out?  Does Sony hate Sega?  Is this a stupid mistake?  The last thing we need is every trace of Sega goodness to go away...look out for the future...


And then add this just because I saw it.  This is entirely in Japan.  New Pokemon game on DS and new Sega Yakuza (under some weird name) game on the PSP.  FIGHT!  Pokemon outsells Yakuza 5 to 1 despite the fact that PB/W has been out for a week already.  This is from Sept. 20 to 26.  All in all not surprising.  Why is Sega making all these PSP games, much less ones that'll never come out in America anyway?  Who knows, who cares.  Congrats on coming in second I guess, Sega has a reason to hold their heads high now.

01. Pokemon Black / White (DS) - 829,000 / 3,386,000

02. Kurohyou: Ryu ga Gotoku Shinshou (PSP) - 174,000 / NEW



And one more thing cause I'm teeming with information.  We're talking about the new Sonic games.  Sonic 4: Episode 1 is coming out in mid-October so that's pretty good.  I'm pretty sure it'll be 1200 MSP but I can't prove it.  Made by Dimps, it's a downloadable title.  Yes, Sonic's gonna be GOOD AGAIN!!  And what's best is that it's just the first episode which means more Sonic titles to come!

Looks like Sonic's moving slower in this one, apparently to improve the controls.  The way he runs looks funny, like his foot movement is potato-shaped or something.  Oh yeah, and I know Sonic 1 had Starlight, Sonic 2 had Casino Night, and Sonic 3 had Carnival Night, but this looks like another Casino level...there's enough of those already, but whatever, that's ok, I like that...  Also, didn't I see a boss battle on Green Hill zone with Eggman and the ball thing?  I think it's good to "revisit" old Sonic classics, but come on, make something semi-original.  Who knows, it may be good.

http://forums.sega.com/showpost.php?p=6228418&postcount=215 - Sonic 4: Episode 2 is currently not in development yet.


Sonic Colours (yes, I like the British spelling) is coming out mid-November and Takashi Iizuka of Sonic Team says...:

This is a similar title to Sonic Adventure 2 Battle, but the similarity comes from the concept – keeping the tempo very fluid.  A similar concept applies here. Is it the best since then? We always strive to make the best Sonic game yet. It’s at least on a par with Sonic Adventure Battle 2 [sic], and I’m confident it is one of the best Sonic games ever.


I've been looking up some info on this Iizuka guy and he's been working on most every Sonic Team game since Sonic 3...  So looking at the footage of Sonic Colours, this looks just like Sonic: Unleashed except without the nighttime Werehog stages.  If it turns out like Sonic Adventure 2 (which I thought was great but remember, not EVERYONE liked it), then it will be alright.  I'm not too stoked though.  Also, it's just gonna be on the Wii and DS which sucks too--no Xbox 360 or PS3 love.
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Burton in position to make his title run

Posted by imelda sovzky

Burton in position to make his title run

Could this be the year Jeff Burton has been working toward since he first climbed into a Cup car for Filbert Martocci 18 years ago? Considering the way things went for Burton in September, you could make the argument for yes.
In order for it to be this year, Burton likely will need a very good finish in Sunday's Price Chopper 400 at a track where he has not been very good in the past—Kansas Speedway.
Can do, he said this week.
"I like the Kansas racetrack," said Burton , whose best Cup points finish was third in 2000, the year before Kansas opened for business. "It's a fun place to go and I look forward to going there. I feel like this weekend will be our best chance to run well there."
Burton will take to the 1.5-mile oval in Kansas City , Kan. , on Sunday, just 80 points behind leader Denny Hamlin entering the third of 10 Chase races.
That deficit isn't bad. There are, however, seven potentially bad things standing between him and first place.
Six of those are the drivers in front of him in the standings as Burton heads to Kansas . A stumble on Sunday, Burton knows, could be disastrous.
"You can be out of the Chase in three races," he said. "You can either be out of it or you can position yourself to win it. Where we'll be, who knows?"
The seventh thing standing in Burton 's way is history.
None of Burton 's 21 career victories have come at Kansas . His best finish in nine tries there is fifth—that came in 2006.
Five times Burton has finished 15th or worse at Kansas and his average finish there is 18.6. Last year, as a non-Chase driver, he ended the day 22 spots behind winner Tony Stewart.
Still, Burton said, he does not feel like Kansas has his number.
"To be honest," he said, "I don't even know what my stats are there. I don't view Kansas as a place where we don't run well. I view it as a place where we don't have (high) finishes. My focus when we go there is to be as prepared as we can be.
"Although it's not new, it's one of our newer tracks. Sometimes people adapt to things quicker than others. It may be a track that I just haven't gotten the handle of, but I feel like this will be our best chance to run well there."
With New Hampshire winner Clint Bowyer succumbing to a killer 150-point penalty, and with Kevin Harvick swooning last week at Dover , Richard Childress Racing's hopes for a championship suddenly appear to rest in Burton 's hands.
He had two top-four finishes in September and led 11 laps in another race. Burton comes to Kansas off a second-place finish in Dover and he comes armed with that cool, analytical Burton mind.
"Ten races is a long time," he said. "If you're not learning and applying from the first race to the fifth race to the 10th race, you're doing something wrong. Every race is an opportunity for us to learn as a team and as a driver. Hopefully, we're there learning something that we can apply to winning a championship.
"You can't get caught up in the chess game of where I am now. It's an accumulation of all those points. That's not to say if you're 12th, 300 points back, you can say that you're going to win a championship. It's not going to happen. You have to be in position."
And Burton , a veteran of 575 Cup starts, is definitely in position.
By Jim Pedley

Special to Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service
(September 30, 2010)

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Top 5 and 5 to watch: Kansas

Posted by imelda sovzky

Top 5 and 5 to watch: Kansas

Here's a look at the top five drivers in the Sprint Cup Series standings and five drivers to watch in Sunday's race at Kansas Speedway. All statistical references are for Sprint Cup races at Kansas unless otherwise indicated. Driver rating is based on the past five races at the track.

1. Denny Hamlin, 80.9 driver rating. This could be a swing race for Hamlin. He has one top 10 in five starts with an average finish of 19.0. His record on 1.5-mile tracks this year is a mixed bag: 19th, 21st, 1st ( Texas ), 18th, 8th and 43rd ( Atlanta ). He came through last week at Dover , which also is one of his weaker tracks. Expect him to shine again Sunday.

2. Jimmie Johnson, 122.6. Johnson won last week and heads to a track at which he has one win and six top 10s in eight starts. But a bigger number is Johnson's three poles. He has started six races inside the top five, and he is qualifying very well this year. Johnson won from the pole last week, and you know Johnson and crew chief Chad Knaus want the first pit selection. We could have a new leader Sunday afternoon.

3. Kyle Busch, 74.4. This is not one of Busch's better tracks. He has one top 10 in six starts, and his 24.3 average finish is his second worst in the Cup series. Overall, Busch is working on the longest active top-10 streak at five races. If crew chief Dave Rogers can get the No. 18 dialed in, Busch should do just fine Sunday.

4. Kurt Busch, 82.0. Kurt hasn't performed much better than his brother at Kansas : two top 10s in nine starts. On the other hand, Busch has a season-best two wins on 1.5-mile tracks ( Atlanta , Charlotte ). In fact, Busch's past four Cup wins have been on 1.5-mile tracks. Busch is highly capable of cutting into his 59-point deficit to Hamlin.

5. Kevin Harvick, 81.2. Harvick has three top 10s—all sixth-place finishes—in nine starts. Since winning at Michigan in August, Harvick has two top 10s in five races, hum-drum stats for the regular-season points leader. More ominous, though, is that Harvick hasn't led a lap since his win. He finished 15th last week.

Five to watch:
6. Carl Edwards, 94.2. Edwards continued his brilliant late-season surge last week with his sixth top five in the past 11 races. His worst finish in that span is 12th, one of his two finishes outside the top 10. Edwards still hasn't won since the last race of 2008, but he's getting closer. He has four top 10s in six starts at Kansas , and a win Sunday isn't out of the question.

7. Jeff Burton, 73.0. Burton has two top 10s in nine starts with a mediocre 18.6 average finish. He must do better Sunday to stay within striking distance of the lead (he's 80 behind Hamlin). Burton finished second last week, but he hasn't shown the ability to close the deal this year. His winless drought is five races longer than Edwards'.

8. Jeff Gordon, 104.7. Gordon has an excellent record at Kansas—two wins, six top fives—and if ever he needed to tap into that, it's Sunday. He finished second last year, and his only finish worse than 13th was a 39th in 2006 when his fuel pump broke. He trails Hamlin by 83 points.

9. Greg Biffle, 119.6. The big drop-off among Chase drivers begins with Biffle, who is 140 points back. But there is hope. Since crashing in his first start at Kansas in 2002, Biffle has one win among his five top fives and he finished 12th in his other two starts. On the other hand ... Biffle has started the Chase with finishes of 17th and 19th, which followed finishes of 36th and 32nd to close the regular season.

10. Tony Stewart, 99.0. Stewart won last year's race, and he also won in 2006 when he took advantage of being outside the Chase and was free to gamble on fuel mileage (he coasted to the victory). Two weeks ago in the Chase opener, Stewart gambled on fuel mileage and lost (coasted home 24th). He finished 21st last week and finds himself 162 points off the lead. So what can we expect to see Sunday? Stewart has nothing to lose and everything to gain, so if he thinks he can steal a win on fuel mileage, he'll go for it again.

By Bill Marx

Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service
(September 30, 2010)

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NASCAR: The Game CONFIRMED! Bad Daytona Days

Posted by imelda sovzky

Remember how I talked a week ago about Activision picking up the NASCAR license for a supposed "new" racing game?  Well, that's not entirely true, but it's pretty much as clear as day now.

Check out this excerpt:

Then just last week the rumor mill heated up once again about a possible deal between NASCAR and Activision. From what everyone was saying, the deal was already signed and NASCAR and Activision were ready to drop the big news any day. But as it turns out the rumors were only half true.

In reality, NASCAR has signed on to an exclusive new multi-year, multi-game deal, but they chose video game developer Eutechnyx -- creators of "Big Mutha Truckers" and "Ferrari Challenge" -- to sign the deal with, not a publisher like EA or Activision.  Activision is involved, but they are acting as the distributor for Eutechnyx's game, entitled "NASCAR The Game 2011."

This is a key distinction, enabling NASCAR to be more hands-on with the game's development thanks to partnering with a company that specializes in creating racing games, rather than signing blindly with Activision for the sole sake of dollar signs and letting the publisher decide who develops the franchise.

So basically, NASCAR License = gone for several years.  No chance of a "Daytona USA" comeback.  At least Activision isn't gobbling it up, that was just a rumor.  Apparently Eutechnyx can handle this all by itself.

JUST TO CLEAR SOMETHING UP: Having the NASCAR license and the Daytona license are two different things.  It's just inferred now that if Eutechnyx has the NASCAR license then they'll have the Daytona International Speedway license too which means presuming the DIS license is exclusive, then Sega can't use the Daytona name.  So NASCAR leads to DIS leads to Daytona USA...you get what I mean by NASCAR license.

SOMETHING ELSE: Even if the Daytona license isn't exclusive (and I hear it isn't from others), then it would probably be too expensive for Sega to afford...so either way, Sega's in a pickle.

But the strange thing is that there's already gonna be a NASCAR game in the form of GRAN TURISMO 5...the question is will GT5's NASCAR be superior to NASCAR THE ("Official") GAME??  So why are they making the same game TWICE?  EDIT: Cause GT5 only has 12 cars on the track at once, that's why.

Further instincts might say you know what, this company apparently has the guts to try something "new" with NASCAR considering their wonderful lineup of past racing games since they can't "out-sim" GT5, but it's looking pretty bleak if you read later in the interview.  This is Ed Martin, Executive VP of Eutechnyx in the US of A:

...There are tens of millions of NASCAR fans and plenty of them have video game systems. So how come NASCAR video games haven't penetrated that market as far as an NHL game or a baseball game? We really believe that's because the games haven't been approachable.

There have been times where there were "over-the-top" games like "NASCAR Rumble" and even "NASCAR Kart," but there is a real disconnect there because those games don't represent the real sport. You can't go off too far off the path. At the same time, you can't get too sim-y. We want you to jump right in and have fun. The thing about Eutechnyx, this is our 24th year, and we've done nothing but racing games for 24 years. This is a company with a rich history of creating great driving games. If you turn off all the assists in our NASCAR game, this is a very real -- as close as you can come to a simulation on a console -- but at the same time, with the assists turned on, this is a very fun, approachable game for the common NASCAR fan.

Of course though, when it comes to NASCAR and Daytona USA 1/2, they aren't even close (obviously in terms of physics/driving), but also because Daytona USA never outright references NASCAR or uses actual cars, tracks, etc.  Therefore, Daytona USA fans are never really NASCAR fans or vice versa so basically Daytona USA = a piece of meat to these people as far as I'm concerned.  Also, Daytona USA is made in Japan and as we all know, the Japanese will butcher anything American and we can't have that.

I think though that Daytona USA 1/2 would have great "approachability" to the general public.  Fun and unique, it had great audio, sense of speed, intensity, etc.  If not, then what OTHER stock car games could you make that people would buy?  The old NASCAR sims were unimpressive or unpopular, EA was just phoning it in apparently, "NASCAR is boring lololol," and these weirdo Mario-Kart-like games didn't stick either.  Really, riddle me this--what do actual NASCAR fans think of NASCAR '09 or all these sims?  Weren't they already satisfied or is this gonna be the "glorious return to NASCAR" that everyone will love?   I don't know, I don't see NASCAR games being pushed any further outside of anomalies like Daytona USA.

So the guy's gonna return to the sim genre but make it a little more fun...doesn't sound new.  Just trying to drum up a bit of support against GT5.  My main concern is this--how will this game be that much different than, say, NASCAR by EA or NASCAR Thunder for the PC?  Or is there all this hype because there wasn't a NASCAR game in more than one year?

Apparently, everyone's new mission statement is "Don't do what Sega has done," and just make a NASCAR game devoid of any Daytona USA aspects which I guess is what's going to happen.  But really, if you want my advice...TAKE THIS PAGE FROM SEGA'S PLAYBOOK...make the game intense.  Add great audio, music, control, sense of speed, you don't even have to put drifting/powersliding in it, just channel out all the ADHD-filth from Burnout/Split-Second and make it a PURE RACING GAME!

But it doesn't really bother me that much what these guys do.  Obviously, they're gonna go for more NASCAR authenticity than GT5.  If they did try to go the Daytona USA route just a little, they would probably muck it up and I wouldn't like it.  Do whatever you want, doesn't bother me.  I'm rambling incoherently now.  I just want to get all my ideas out there now so I'm gonna stop.

In the meantime, expect the NASCAR The Game website clock to countdown in the future (Oct. 4) and we can learn more about it then (as if there were any other surprises...I'm not holding my breath).


UPDATE: According to the site above, NASCAR 2011 will be a pure racing sim.  No surprise there.
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Posted by imelda sovzky on Wednesday, September 29, 2010

On September 29, 2010, the National Stock Car Racing Appeals Panel heard and considered the appeal of Richard Childress Racing regarding four penalties issued by NASCAR relative to the #33 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car. This stemmed from post-race inspection following a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at New Hampshire Motor Raceway on September 21, 2010.

The penalties concern Section 12-1 of the NASCAR Rule Book “Actions detrimental to stock car racing.”; Section 12-4-J: “Any determination by NASCAR Officials that the Race Equipment used in the Event does not conform to NASCAR Rules”; and Section 20-3: “The car body location specifications in reference to the certified chassis does not meet the NASCAR-approved specifications.”

The penalties assessed were:
-Loss of 150 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Car Owner points for owner, Richard Childress
-Loss of 150 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Driver points for driver, Clint Bowyer
-$150,000 fine; suspension from the next six (6) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Events; suspension from NASCAR until November 3, 2010; and probation until December 31, 2010 for crew chief Shane Wilson
- Suspension from the next six (6) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Events; suspension from

NASCAR until November 3, 2010; and probation until December 31, 2010 for crew member Chad Haney
The Appellants requested and were granted a deferral of the suspensions and fine until such time as this hearing could be convened.
The Appellants did not contest that the car measured out of specifications upon inspection.
The Appellants argued that, having received a warning about the car body of the #33 car being “too close” following the Richmond race, that it was inconceivable that they would bring a non-conforming car to New Hampshire.
They argued that the left rear frame member was actually bent upward as a result of the car being pushed towards Victory Lane by a wrecker after the post-race burnouts, which resulted in the left rear measurement “hard point” being too high. To this end, they also presented an accident reconstruction specialist to demonstrate that a wrecker might bend up the left rear strut in the trunk under certain conditions. The specialists, however, indicated that such an occurrence would strictly affect the left rear because of the match-up between the wrecker pushbar and the angle of the racecar’s rear bumper. He went on to say that the corresponding right rear measurements should not be affected, in his view, nor the frame member deformed as a team representative had alleged.
The Appellants also contested the severity and timing of the penalty.
Claims that the wrecker caused the infraction were negated by the telemetry from the car which did not show a sharp impact spike; by the fact that the rear template still fit snugly across the entire rear of the car; by a visual inspection of the rear of the car which showed nothing of note in the way of damage; and a visual review of the videotape of post race assistance tendered by the wrecker which appeared as relatively gentle pushing.
Of significance to the Panel were some additional facts which came to light during the hearing. Particularly of note were the facts that both rear hard points, left and right, were high, and that the rear of the body was offset on the frame.
The Panel found that the penalties were consistent for infractions of this magnitude.
Therefore, it is the unanimous decision of the National Stock Car Racing Appeals Panel to uphold the original penalties.
The periods of suspension shall be adjusted from the date of the hearing.

The Appellants have the right under Section 15 of the Rule Book to appeal this decision to the National Stock Car Racing Chief Appellate Officer. The Appellants submitted such a request and the fee immediately after the conclusion of the hearing.

John Capels
Lyn St James
Waddell Wilson
George Silbermann - Appellate Administrator and non-voting member


Bowyer's appeal denied by panel

Posted by imelda sovzky

Bowyer's appeal denied by panel

A three-member appeals panel has denied Richard Childress Racing's appeal of penalties issued for an illegal car that Clint Bowyer drove to victory in the Sept. 19 Sprint Cup event at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
The appeal was held Wednesday afternoon at the NASCAR Research and Development Center , and the NASCAR-appointed panel decided to keep Bowyer's penalty at 150 points with six-week suspensions to crew chief Shane Wilson and car chief Chad Haney as well as a $150,000 fine to Wilson .
RCR owner Richard Childress can make one last-ditch appeal to NASCAR chief appellate officer John Middlebrook, a former General Motors executive. Childress vowed last week to take the appeal to Middlebrook if needed.
It was not immediately clear if Wilson and Haney would continue in their roles this weekend at Kansas Speedway pending a decision by Middlebrook. If Wilson stays home, RCR competition director Scott Miller will be Bowyer's crew chief.
Childress said last week that the car was knocked out of compliance by contact from another racecar or from a wrecker that pushed the car after it ran out of fuel following Bowyer's victory. He said that NASCAR ruled that the way the body sat on the frame was too high in the left rear by 130-thousandths of an inch—60-thousandths of an inch beyond the 70-thousandths of an inch tolerance teams are permitted in that area.
“We know without a shadow of a doubt that that car left (our shop for the race) within the tolerances, well within the tolerances,” Childress said last week.
The penalty knocked Bowyer from second to 12th in the standings, 185 points behind leader Denny Hamlin. A 25th-place finish at Dover dropped him to 235 points behind Hamlin.

NASCAR officials have refused to talk about specifics of the infraction because of the appeal but have said they do not believe contact from the wrecker had anything to do with the car being out of compliance. RCR was warned that the No. 33 car Bowyer raced at Richmond was close to being illegal.
The appeals committee has not overturned a penalty in any of the seven appeals it has heard concerning national series teams this year.
No cases this year have been taken to Middlebrook, who is in the first year in his role as chief appellate officer. Middlebrook replaced Charles Strang, whose title was "commissioner."
Middlebrook spent 49 years at GM before retiring in 2008 from his position as vice president for global sales. Middlebrook was involved in General Motors' NASCAR programs and drove the pace car during the pace laps for the 2008 Allstate 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
"John is well respected in the sport and is known for his careful thought and judgment," NASCAR spokesman Ramsey Poston said at the start of the season.

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Posted by imelda sovzky

Richard Childress Racing is arguing to have Clint Bowyer's 150-point penalty reversed before a NASCAR appeals committee.

BowyerBowyer and his RCR team were penalized last week when the car Bowyer drove to victory at New Hampshire failed inspection. The win came in the opening race of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship and pushed Bowyer to second in the standings, 35 points behind leader Denny Hamlin.
The penalty dropped Bowyer to 12th in the standings, and he trails Hamlin by 235 points with eight Chase races remaining.
RCR is appealing the decision to the National Stock Car Racing Appeals Panel.

The appeal is a longshot. According to NASCAR, of the 132 appeals heard in the past decade, 92 of those decisions were upheld. Only 10 penalties were overturned.


Valve Seems Like A Nice Guy

Posted by imelda sovzky

Today is actually a pretty good day...don't have any school work, I can take a nap, I can eat normal food again (for the most part), not bad, things are better than before...

But I was intrigued by this.  Left 4 Dead loves Dead Rising 2...now isn't that classy.  Stories like these make me smile.


Not only did they make that image above and put Chuck Greene in one of their comics, but they also made passing references to Frank West from DR1, etc.  To me, this is like if Namco made another Ridge Racer and Sega came out and said "You've got a damn fine racing game there, my good man."  Although neither company seems interested in racing games anymore, but that's besides the point.  DR2 isn't in direct competition with L4D (they aren't even the same genre, FPS vs. Action/Adventure), but they like zombies too.  I just wonder if the feeling's mutual on Capcom's side.  After Inafune said that Japanese games were five years behind US games, I think he's a bit touchy to say so.

And throw in this too.  I like Valve.  I like them a lot.  All of their games are pretty good.  Yeah, I get on violent games, but at least Left 4 Dead was on the cusp of the zombie wave so they get a pass.  Plus not to mention they've come up with some unique ideas instead of spitting out these Halo/Fallout/CoD clones, geez.  They have unique ideas, fun characters, different vibe, etc.  Not only that, but they've really fueled the user community by releasing Garry's mod, map-making tools, and the HL source code for modification--lots of fun stuff.

Believe it or not, I actually had the chance (for a college class I might add, in Fall '09) to create a mod of the Half-Life 1 engine.  I got it going alright, but my teammates didn't really follow through and I worked on it mostly myself...I'm proud of what I learned though--it's nice to get your hands dirty.  I am also a huge fan of making FPS maps--I talked about that way back in a July '10 entry about Goldeneye/Perfect Dark maps in CS 1.6, but that's just the tip of the iceberg--there's more.  I may touch on that someday, but don't count on it any time soon.

Overall, gotta give Valve some props.  Cheers.

BTW, I actually got 1000/1000 on L4D1 (a long time ago) so that's not bad.  But enough of zombies.  In all honesty.  Screw 'em.

NOTE: I'm sorry Kotaku that I keep borrowing your images.  I hope you can forgive me someday.
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Posted by imelda sovzky

The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup heads into its third race, at Kansas Speedway on Sunday – the Price Chopper 400. The NASCAR Nationwide Series also will run at Kansas, with Saturday’s Kansas Lottery 300.

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series has an open week, returning to action Oct. 23 at Martinsville Speedway.

The GRAND-AM Road Racing season, meanwhile, is complete, with the Rolex Series and Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge looking to the 2011 season-opening races at Daytona International Speedway Jan. 28-30.


Big-Time Battle At Top Of Standings
The top four in the standings this week consist of two former series champions (Jimmie Johnson and Kurt Busch) and two younger guys (Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch) who many consider champions in waiting. They’re separated by only 59 points.
Johnson Looming Large
Four-time defending series champ Jimmie Johnson won this past Sunday at Dover, vaulting to second in the points. As if anybody needed a reminder, he is, after all, the champ – until somebody proves differently.
Bad Blood Has Surfaced Between Hamlin and Harvick
Clint Bowyer won the first Chase race at New Hampshire to advance to second in the points. Then a 150-point penalty moved him back to 12th and likely out of contention.
Then Denny Hamlin made some caustic comments about Bowyer’s team contesting the penalty. Whereupon Bowyer’s teammate, Kevin Harvick, slammed into Hamlin on the race track during practice at Dover. And finally, Hamlin and Harvick got into a heated exchange in the Dover garage area.
Welcome to the Chase, everyone.
An important footnote: Bowyer’s team has appealed the penalty. Their appeal will be heard on Wednesday by the National Stock Car Racing Appeals Panel.
Home Cooking
Carl Edwards and Clint Bowyer both consider Kansas Speedway their “home track” – Edwards is from Columbia, Mo. and Bowyer is from Emporia, Kan.
The fact that both are in the Chase obviously adds to their inherent enthusiasm this weekend.
Kansas in 2011: Let’s Play Two
Kansas Speedway, which opened in 2001, has annually had one NASCAR Sprint Cup race per year since then.
Starting next year it’ll have two: June 5 and Oct. 9.

Watch Out For Spoilers At Kansas
Spoilers – drivers outside the Chase field – have had good success at Kansas since the Chase format began in 2004, with non-Chase drivers winning three out of six times.

Some potential spoilers to watch out for this weekend:
Juan Pablo Montoya, fourth last year at Kansas.
Mark Martin, whose Kansas Driver Rating of 100.1 is fourth best in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
Brad Keselowski, 13th last year at Kansas.


Now It Is Mine--DR2 (And "Red Dead Rising")

Posted by imelda sovzky on Tuesday, September 28, 2010

If this is true, then I'm gonna cry:


I find it funny that when I bring up all these zombies games...there's a ton of them right?  Just like a zombie horde--they just keep coming!  So way to emulate a zombie apocalypse, you crazy game devs...


And then there's the main attraction.  Might as well make this quick before anyone gets any ideas...

My younger brother, the one who plays Saints Row, etc., is really into Dead Rising 2 so he got it for his birthday right about today.  So I'm gonna play around with it and check it out cause curiousity killed the cat.  Oh, and for achievement points.

The story is that DR2 takes place about five years after DR1.  There's this game show where people chop up zombies (apparently in broad daylight for people to witness) called "Terror Is Reality."  The protagonist Chuck Greene goes on it to earn money so he can buy this drug Zombrex for his daughter Katie so she doesn't die/get turned into a zombie...  Then after that, zombies just start popping out of nowhere and everyone dies.  Aw, what a sweet story.  I'll get back to you in like two seconds, someday, w/e...

UPDATE: You know what.  I got to play it for a few hours, not bad but still kind of stupid.  Just slashing up zombies.  Chuck is a likeable character but after doing some research in the form of YouTube videos, MY GOODNESS is this a messed-up game.  I've completely forgot about that aspect...I mean, what the hell.  I'm not even going to bother linking to anything--just type in "dead rising 2 psychopath" in YT and there you go  (Oh yeah, and cross-dressing protagonists, throw that in there too).

I'll probably play the game some more but I don't know--it makes me feel bad.  I don't know--the elaborate setting/backdrop was what got me into these Dead Rising games in the first place.  Like I feel like a big dummy for being interested in the first place.  I gotta get the "funk" out of me.  I don't want to lose my sanity to this.  I just want some good Daytona games...should probably go back to SaSASR and OutRun 2.  I'm turning into my own psychopath here...I don't know what to do, just go to school, graduate, and make some good games!!!
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Sporting News Power Poll after Dover

Posted by imelda sovzky

Sporting News Power Poll after Dover
By the Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service

After his victory Sunday at Dover, Jimmie Johnson is back atop the Sporting News Power Poll. Johnson has three top-five finishes in his past four starts and has closed to 35 points of Chase leader Denny Hamlin, who is second in the poll. The weekly poll is a collaboration of Sporting News and Rowdy.com.

1. Jimmie Johnson (11th) His 19 wins in Chase races alone (62 races) are enough to rank him 34th all time in Cup wins.
2. Denny Hamlin (1st) His target finish was eighth, and he finished ninth. That’s three straight top 10s for the points leader.
3. Kyle Busch (4th) Looked like he might pull off a Dover sweep but faded to sixth at the end.
4. Carl Edwards (6th) Edwards stayed in touch with the Chase leaders with a fifth-place finish at Dover.
5. Kurt Busch (9th) Fourth in the race. Fourth in the points.
6. Jeff Burton (13th) Found it funny that Burton bemoaned the fact he can’t qualify well. He has never qualified well. Accept it, dude, and move on. Be proud of your runner-up finish and keep digging.
7. Kevin Harvick (3rd) Harvick has four top 15s in the past five races, but he hasn’t led any laps since winning at Michigan.
8. Jeff Gordon (5th) Gordon ran in the top six most of the afternoon, but a mistake in the pits cost him dearly. Lacking the speed of the Chase front-runners, Gordon has to be perfect in all other respects. On Sunday, that didn’t happen.
9. Ryan Newman (10th) Four top 10s in the past five races. Easily his best stretch all season.
10. AJ Allmendinger (16th) Before Sunday’s race, AJ had led 43 laps in his entire career. At Dover he led 143. Could it be mere coincidence that he drives the No. 43?
11. Joey Logano (25th) Logano has two top fives in the past three races but still no consistency.
12. Jamie McMurray (7th) McMurray is fighting hard with Newman for the consolation prize for non-Chasers. Newman has 13th place by 19 points.
13. Clint Bowyer (2nd) His appeal should raise the point that NASCAR needs an independent board of arbiters to make judgment calls, rather than NASCAR-appointed ones.
14. Tony Stewart (8th) A second straight finish in the 20s put Smoke’s title hopes in serious jeopardy.
15. Juan Pablo Montoya (14th) Montoya qualified in the top 10 for the 10th straight race. That’s the longest current top-10 starting streak in Cup.
16. Matt Kenseth (17th) A blown tire ripped into his car, and Kenseth finished 18th. That’s his fourth consecutive finish outside the top 10.
17. Greg Biffle (15th) A big, fat egg laid at one of his best tracks spells doom for Biffle in this year’s Chase.
18. Mark Martin (23rd) Martin had to start in the back because of an illegal shock in qualifying but raced his way into the top 15—which is progress for Martin these days.
19. Paul Menard (NR) Menard gets his fourth top 10 and first since Chicagoland in July. He had two entering the season.
20. Marcos Ambrose (24th) Once he fell a lap down, long green-flag runs kept him there.
21. Dale Earnhardt Jr. (19th) Step right up to the Earnhardt roller-coaster. New Hampshire gave Junior’s fans some hope. Dover dashed it again.
22. David Reutimann (12th) Reutimann finished 35th, his fourth finish 30th or worse. He had three last year.
23. Kasey Kahne (18th) For the second week in a row Kahne failed to run one lap in the top 10.
24. Brad Keselowski (21st) His 22nd at Dover equaled his average finish this year. Keselowski has 11 finishes from 18th to 22nd.
25. Martin Truex Jr. (20th) Shades of the Truex who won his only Cup race at Dover until mechanical problems spoiled his day

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Zombies UP YOUR Arse...

Posted by imelda sovzky on Monday, September 27, 2010

Today is a sad day for racing games.  Apparently, Activision has spit out this game called Blood Drive.  You drive around this post-apocalyptic Las Vegas (GEE, HAVEN'T I SEEN THAT BEFORE...?) and run over zombies.  Mother of God.

Hey, let's just strangle the life out of the "racing" genre (which will soon be merged with the "action" genre, never to be referrenced seriously again).  No one wants to play a "normal" racing game anymore, those are too boring!  Just steal every popular idea and mash it into some half-assed game.  I can't take it anymore.  I know this isn't the first time they made a zombie driving game (Carmageddon), but why do they PERSIST??

I'm not an alcoholic--I've never intentionally drunk a drop of beer, wine, whatever in my entire life, but I'm starting to consider it.


Oh yeah, and remember talking about Nazi Zombies in Call of Duty: Black Ops?  We'll they're back.  I must say this is the only "good" zombie news I've heard so far.  I knew they'd release it.  Click on this webpage...it doesn't make any sense but it has pictures of zombies so there you go.  This game will probably whoop MW2's ass.  I feel good for Treyarch since they've played "stupid little brother" to Infinity Ward all this time.  But still, Activision gets paid so that's sad.  I guess we'll get more info as we go on.



And then there's Dead Rising 2.  I mean, I've reached the point where I have to take interest in SOMETHING and I'm only moderately interested in the game.  But do you want to know why?  Cause I really like the idea of running around in these elaborate places (casinos, malls, etc.) doing whatever the hell I want--drive a car around, play Counter-Strike, run a race, that's my idea of fun.

Click for a bigger picture.  Compared to the Willamette Mall from DR1, this is HUGE.

I like sandbox games like that.  They just threw the zombies in there cause you know, everyone has a zombie fetish nowadays.

I just 200/200'd Dead Rising 2: Case Zero which I guess makes me a hypocrite but I'm losing it.  I just gotta hold out for Rock Band 3 which is the only game I'm really looking forward to.

NEW STUFF: I just realized this game has this "Terror Is Reality" show which is a little minigame outside of the story mode.  It's like that Fuzion Frenzy game but with zombies.  It looks stupid as all hell.  And there's no Survival/Infinity mode in this game (survive as long as possible before you run out of life).  Maybe they'll add it as DLC.  Oh geez, man.  Whatever, I'm not that interested anymore.  I'd rather play Black Ops now.


And one more thing.  This is about the New Orleans Saints.  I'm not gonna wuss out and jump off the bandwagon.  We lost.  Rough game, at least I take solace in the fact that we were only 3 points behind instead of 30.  Hats off to the Falcons (oh geez).  And Hartley...gosh, kickers have approximately a 95% chance of making that kick from the 15-yard line...  Also I wish the defense could've stopped those lame 3rd/4th downs passes to Gonzales or whoever.  Better luck next time.  If the Saints won every game it would be boring so just take it for what it's worth.

And the funny thing this isn't the first time that the Saints missed a chip-shot field goal to win it...

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Payback Almost Always Guaranteed

Posted by imelda sovzky

Payback Almost Always Guaranteed When Sprint Cup Cars Come to Martinsville Speedway

 Payback. As sure as Christmas, it’s going to come before the end of the 2010 Chase for the Sprint Cup.
After last weekend’s dustup between Kevin Harvick and Denny Hamlin, it’s not so much when payback is coming, but where. And with just eight races remaining in this year’s Chase, there is only one logical choice: Martinsville Speedway and the TUMS Fast Relief 500 on October 24.
With its long straight-aways and tight turns, it’s the perfect place to get away with a little extracurricular activity.
Take last spring’s Goody’s Fast Pain Relief 500 at Martinsville. Hamlin freight-trained his way through traffic to snare the win after giving up the lead to pit for tires with eight laps to go. Along the way, his No. 11 FedEx Toyota turned into a pinball, careening into the lead after restarting fourth with just four laps to go.
But Hamlin probably would not have won without a little retaliatory warfare between Jeff Gordon and Matt Kenseth.
Kenseth rammed into the back of Gordon on the final restart, sending Gordon up the track. The two battled for the lead for a half of a lap before Gordon bumped Kenseth hard, making way for Hamlin to take the lead.
“If a guy gives you a cheap shot like that, he doesn’t deserve to win the race,” said Gordon said of Kenseth’s shove.
"I did go in there and I did get into Jeff a little bit, really not that hard, and I got under him and everything was fine," Kenseth said of the initial contact. "[Then] he just took a left as hard as he could take one and ran me down all the way into the marbles."
A couple of years ago Gordon said this about racing at Martinsville: “Martinsville is rough because it’s a tough place to pass on and it’s a short track. Put those two things together and you have a lot of bumping and banging. Some of it could be paybacks and some of it could just be hard short-track racing. You never really know.”
And then there’s the chance of a turf war between Hamlin and Harvick.
Hamlin is a native Virginian, who first raced in Late Models at Martinsville and has since racked up three wins on the track he calls his home-away-from-home
Martinsville Speedway is Harvick’s adopted home track. He lives about 30 minutes from the track and tells anyone who wants to listen it is his home track.
Payback, hard racing and turf wars all combined with NASCAR’S “boys have at it policy” and double-file restarts should create an interesting afternoon of old-school racing for the TUMS Fast Relief 500. It should be typical Martinsville.

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For Johnson, winning is the ticket to titles

Posted by imelda sovzky

The Cool Down Lap: For Johnson, winning is the ticket to titles

What’s a win worth?
Ask Jimmie Johnson. He’s the expert.
Since NASCAR introduced the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup in 2004, Johnson has won a statistically improbable 19 of the aggregate 62 Chase races, the most recent coming Sunday at Dover International Speedway.
Johnson has won 30.6 percent of his starts in the Chase. In non-Chase races, Johnson has won 34 times in 257 starts, a winning percentage of 13.2 percent.
In the Chase, Johnson and his No. 48 team more their double the frequency of their trips to victory lane. Johnson and crew chief Chad Knaus figured out long ago the key to winning Chases is winning races.
Not only have they identified the most efficient strategy, but they also have done something much more difficult. They’ve carried it out.
Sunday’s race brought home the value of winning in an emphatic, unmistakable way. After an uncharacteristically sloppy 25th-place finish a week earlier at New Hampshire, Johnson was seventh in the standings, 92 points behind Chase leader Denny Hamlin.
At Dover, however, Johnson led the most laps and won the race, jumped to second in the standings and knocked 57 points off Hamlin’s lead. Though Johnson’s average finish through two races is 12.5—far off the pace necessary to win a title—he’s only 35 points behind Hamlin, who finished second at Loudon and ninth at Dover for an average finish of 5.5.
The math is simple. A race winner is guaranteed 190 points (including the five-point bonus for leading a lap), with another five points available for leading the most laps. Accordingly, a dominating win, the likes of which Johnson orchestrated Sunday, can go a long way toward canceling mistakes in earlier races.
Hamlin is aware of the formula. The difference is that he and his No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing team haven’t been able to implement it yet.
“We’re not going to keep those guys from winning—they’re going to,” Hamlin said after Sunday’s race. “They’re going to win. That’s the characteristic of that team. Anytime they’re faced with adversity, they come and make a strong statement. That’s been their M.O. for a long time.
To me, it’s not that alarming, and I won’t be too alarmed by it.”
Nevertheless, it’s evident Hamlin and Johnson entered the Chase with different mind-sets. Hamlin had a series of goals with respect to where he hoped to stand after each race. Johnson prefers to add up the points after each event.
“I’m not so concerned with statements,” Johnson said. “At the end of the day, I’m just concerned with where I am in the points, what the deficit is—if we’re fortunate to get on top, how big that gap is, what we need to do to be champions. A lot of that other stuff, if it’s in your brain, you’re not thinking about the right thing.
“We want to win this championship. We want to win five in a row. It’s within our race shop. These guys on the 48 team, we need to buckle down, get better in some areas. (Sunday) we did win, but we need to be stronger moving forward. We’ve got to go home and get better.”
And they have to win more races. That’s part of the formula Johnson and Knaus are all so familiar with.
And it’s something Hamlin and the No. 11 team will have to accept and execute if they want to become the next Sprint Cup champions
By Reid Spencer

Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service

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Jimmie Johnson wins the "AAA 400

Posted by imelda sovzky

Jimmie Johnson wins the "AAA 400" NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Dover International Speedway

 Jimmie Johnson went into the “Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup” hoping to use the first two races as a springboard towards a fifth consecutive title. The first one at New Hampshire didn’t go so well, but the second at one of his favorite tracks – Dover International Speedway – sure did.
Johnson claimed Sunday’s “AAA 400” at the Monster Mile, starting from the pole position to win for the sixth time at the one-mile concrete oval. Johnson won the race by 2.637 seconds over Jeff Burton, who advanced from a 27th place starting position to finish runner-up. Johnson is now second to only Richard Petty and Bobby Allison, who each won seven times in their careers at Dover.
The win counteracted Johnson’s 25th place finish at New Hampshire last week, which left Johnson 92 points back in the Chase, and vaulted him back to second place, now just 35 points behind leader Denny Hamlin.
“Obviously it was the weekend we would dream of. We got the pole, led the most laps and won the race,” Johnson said. “I had a great car and everybody did their jobs today. I was very pleased with the effort and it came at a good time obviously. We’ve got eight [races] to go and we’ll see where it goes from here.”
Johnson ran near the front all day. He eventually ended up leading five times for 191 laps, and never ran lower than sixth place. His first stint up front consisted of the first 13 laps, but he yielded the lead to AJ Allmendinger on lap 14.
Johnson was content to hang around the front pack until lap 42, when Allmendinger pitted and turned over the lead. He kept a grip on the top spot for the next 96 laps, until Kyle Busch just beat him out while pitting under caution at lap 293. On the restart, Johnson spun his tires and Busch was able to pull away to a 1.3-second lead in just four laps.
But on lap 339, Johnson reeled Busch in and regained the top spot. Aside from handing the lead to Carl Edwards on the next set of pit stops, he was in front the rest of the way.
For as well as the race went, the weekend started out uncharacteristically badly for Johnson. He ran just 20th fastest in the first practice on Friday, which, compared to the No. 48 team’s history at Dover, was like running last.
“We really had our hands full this weekend,” said crew chief Chad Knaus. “We came in qualifying trim, and as we unloaded, the car wasn’t reacting the way we anticipated. So we had to make some pretty significant changes, and when it came time to qualify, we had to put a setup under there that Jimmie hadn’t felt yet.
“For race practice, we weren’t where we needed to be then either. Honestly, we could adjust the car and make it do some different things, but we couldn’t really make the car better. The difference today was definitely the driver.”
The driver came out of the race knocking on Hamlin’s door in the points standings, although Hamlin’s 35-point advantage is the largest a driver has ever had after two races since the Chase was implemented in 2004. Hamlin finished 9th, which was no small accomplishment considering his history at Dover. He finished 4th in the May race this year, but before that had finished no higher than 22nd in the five previous races.
It was a mediocre day,” Hamlin said. “I hate that we didn’t run better, but we got close to where we wanted to be leaving Dover. It’s frustrating that we still can’t get a grasp on this race track and didn’t run as well as we did in the spring. But if you told me I’d be taking a 35 point lead out of Dover, I’d take it.”
Kyle Busch finished third and also jumped up to third place in the points standings with his solid run. “It was a good day for us, but man, legitimately we had a second place car,” Busch said. “I thought we had something on Jimmie with about 100 laps left. I was gaining on him, but I was overdriving the car. After that, the car just got tight and I could never get it back out of the car. It was that good, but we didn’t finish quite where we wanted to.”
Burton jumped to seventh place in the Chase standings with his second-place finish. He’s just 80 points out of the lead heading into Chase race No. 3 at Kansas after finishing second at Dover for the second time this season.
“We thought we had a really good car coming into the race today,” Burton said. “We took off and struggled a little bit with rear grip, and worked all day to get the grip level right. About halfway through that next to last run, my car got really happy and took off. I’m proud of us for getting the car right at the right time. About 15 laps into that next to last run, Jimmie cleared Logano and got really fast. He was just a little quicker than we were today.”
Allmendinger started second and finished 10th, a result that was largely due to a right-rear tire going down. He led 143 laps on the day after previously leading only 43 laps in his entire NASCAR Sprint Cup career.
“It was just a fast race car and starting up front [that was the difference],” he said. “It’s actually a lot of fun to lead. No wonder Jimmie is smiling so much.”
The race was one of the cleanest ever run at the Monster Mile. It had just four cautions, two of which were for debris and one that was for a damaged track caution light. There was only one incident that brought out a caution, when David Reutimann hit the wall in Turn 4. The 19 laps under caution were the fewest at Dover in 13 years, going back to the September 1997 event that had just one caution flag for 11 laps. It was just the sixth race in the track’s history to run fewer than 20 laps under caution.

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JOHNSON WINS DOVER: Hamlin Makes A Statement, Too

Posted by imelda sovzky on Sunday, September 26, 2010

Notebook: Hamlin makes a statement, too

By Reid Spencer
Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service

DOVER, Del.—Despite a performance he described as “mediocre,” Denny Hamlin felt he made a strong statement in Sunday’s AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway—perhaps as strong as the one made by race winner Jimmie Johnson.
Hamlin, after all, got past the track that has haunted him in the past with a 35-point lead over Johnson in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup standings.
“I think a lot of people are just waiting for us to slip up, like we have done in the past,” Hamlin said after finishing ninth Sunday. “I just don’t see that happening this time around. I just think our team is too focused at this point, and we’re running too well for that to happen.
“I think it’s going to go all the way to the wire. My opinion—I think there’s going to be a handful of guys that are going to be racing legitimately for this championship at Homestead (in the season finale). Hopefully, we’re one of those groups. That’s a really good track for us.
“I just don’t see anyone really running away with it this year. The competition’s just too strong.”
Hamlin won at Homestead last year and has finished third there twice.
Allmendinger ready to lead RPM
According to owner Richard Petty, a third Sprint Cup team at Richard Petty Motorsports is still an option, and the fact the organization is downsizing from four teams to two or three gives RPM more time to make a decision.
“Like everybody else, we’re trying to do as much as we can,” Petty said. “We’ve talked to a lot of people about a third car, but our main deal is make sure we’ve got two really good cars, and then we try to do a third deal.”
RPM has AJ Allmendinger and Marcos Ambrose under contract to drive Fords in the Cup series next year. With the departures of Kasey Kahne, Paul Menard and Elliott Sadler, Allmendinger is the only holdover from the 2010 driver lineup.
Asked whether there’s a deadline to launch a third team, Petty said, “Right now, no. We’ve got ’til the end of the year. If we’re downgrading from four teams to three teams, we’ve still got plenty of everything it would take to run that third car.
“It wouldn’t be like just having two, and then all of a sudden we’ve got to go out and get cars, people and trucks and all the equipment to run the third car. We can wait a pretty (long time), I think, as far as being able to get cars ready.”
Petty thinks the addition of Ambrose, the Australian driver who comes to RPM from JTG/Daugherty Racing, will energize the organization.
“I’ve always liked him, because, I guess, he’s a little bit different from us,” Petty said. “He’s so energetic. You never seen him where he wasn’t bouncing around, and I like people like that who are enthused with the project they’ve got in front of them.”
Petty said Allmendinger, who drives the No. 43 inextricably associated with Petty’s seven Cup championships, already has progressed toward taking a leadership role.
“With Kasey leaving, AJ’s going to be the lead dog, more or less, of Richard Petty Motorsports, and so far, he’s already stepped up,” Petty said. “We feel it’s getting his mind-set to where he’s not going to have to follow anybody—he’s going to be the leader—and with Marcos coming along, Marcos will make him go. So we feel like that’s going to be a real good team.”
Allmendinger underlined Petty’s confidence Sunday. He led 143 laps (100 more than he had led previously in his Cup career) before a slow leak in one of his tires forced him to pit road prematurely and cost him a lap. Allmendinger nevertheless rallied to finish 10th.
The $1 million was safe Sunday
Chase drivers Tony Stewart and Greg Biffle were trying to give away $1 million Sunday to their respective small business owner finalists as part of an Office Depot small business promotion. To do so, one of the drivers had to win the race.
Neither came close. Stewart went two laps down early, thanks to a pit road speeding penalty. Biffle was trapped two laps down when Roush Fenway Racing teammate Matt Kenseth blew a tire and caused a caution right after Biffle had made a green-flag stop 15 laps before the halfway point.
“We were running on the lead lap, and I thought I had a top-10 car,” Biffle said. “It’s unfortunate. That probably right there was probably our Chase hopes. We’re not out of it, but those two finishes (19th Sunday and 17th last week at New Hampshire) are not the way to start the Chase off.”
Stewart came home 21st.

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NASCAR License Goes To Activision

Posted by imelda sovzky


Why, if we have to make the Daytona USA game without the "Daytona" name then we'll do it.  But it doesn't help when Sega misses out again, especially since EA was sitting on the name for years.  Not like I'm that surprised by the news.

ADDED THIS: According to the article, the license is being used by Eutechnyx, this racing dev that was responsible for such classics as 007 Racing (remember this?), Big Mutha Truckers, Pimp My Ride, some Hot Wheels game, and Street Racing Synicate.  We can all sleep well at night knowing that the Daytona name is in good hands.



Oh yeah BTW, this is my long-time friend isamu's emulation cabinet...he plays Daytona USA on the PC Model2 Nebula Emulator.  So check it out.  It's quite an expensive cabinet (over $4000).

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Harvick defends RCR’s honor—with his bumper

Posted by imelda sovzky on Saturday, September 25, 2010

Harvick defends RCR’s honor—with his bumper

By Reid Spencer
Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service
(September 25, 2010)

DOVER, Del.—Denny Hamlin found out Saturday that words come with a price.
Kevin Harvick took issue with Hamlin’s impugning the integrity of Richard Childress Racing and showed his displeasure on the first lap of practice Saturday at Dover International Speedway.
Harvick slammed Hamlin twice in the rear bumper before sideswiping the No. 11 Toyota. The contact ripped a seam between the right rear quarter panel and the bumper cover of Hamlin’s car.
Harvick’s No. 29 Chevrolet sustained minor damage on the left front and left side, and both drivers brought their cars to the garage for repairs. The two cars were parked beside each other in their respective stalls. Hamlin climbed from his car and exchanged words with Harvick and RCR vice president of competition Mike Dillon.
In the wake of the penalty NASCAR levied on RCR driver Clint Bowyer, owner Richard Childress and the No. 33 Chevrolet team when Bowyer’s race-winning car at New Hampshire measured outside NASCAR’s tolerances, Hamlin fired the opening salvo Friday at Dover.
The No. 33 team was warned after the Sept. 11 race at Richmond, where a sixth-place finish got Bowyer into the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Hamlin asserted RCR was warned before that.
“It’s not two weeks old,” Hamlin said. “This is something that’s been going on for months. They’ve been warned for a long time, way before Richmond.”
By implication, he tarred the Harvick’s No. 29 and Jeff Burton’s No. 33 with the same brush.
“The more they reel the other teams in, the better off our team’s going to be,” Hamlin said. “It’s going to affect the 29, the 31 and the 33. I think the only difference is the 33 won the race, so he went to the tech center.”
Hamlin also disputed whether contact from the wrecker that pushed Bowyer’s car to victory lane could knock the rear of the car beyond the tolerances. Harvick apparently wanted to give Hamlin first-hand experience of what damage a shot from another car can do.
Childress, who declined to respond to Hamlin’s assertions, said he didn’t see the practice incident, but he had strong words for Hamlin after Saturday’s first practice session.
“You can’t win a pissing contest with a skunk,” Childress said. “Two things I’ve learned. One of ’em is that. The other one is you don’t throw stones if you live in a glass house.”
Asked about the heavy damage to the back of Hamlin’s car, Childress quipped, “I don’t know whether he backed into Kevin or not.”
Harvick’s crew spent 20 minutes in the garage bay repairing primarily cosmetic damage to the No. 29 car. Hamlin’s crew riveted the quarter panel to the bumper cover, a process that took about 25 minutes.
After Hamlin posted the 29th-fastest speed in the first session, the No. 11 crew cut, attached and taped a new section of sheet metal behind the right rear wheel well. Hamlin improved to seventh fastest in the final practice.
After the final practice, Hamlin said he expected some sort of payback from the RCR teams.
“I think it’s unnecessary, because it didn’t help either one of the race teams,” Hamlin said. “I spoke my mind (Friday), and I felt like I said a lot of truth, and a lot of times that’s not popular with the teams that are involved. Something I’ve always done is speak my mind. It’s not always in my best interest to do that, but when someone asks me a question, I’m always going to give my 100 percent honest answer, and that’s the best I can do.
“Now we just move on. We get our car fixed, and we’re obviously getting some of our speed back, and now the goal is to move on.”
Hamlin said the altercation in the garage didn’t amount to much.
“There was a lot of cursing,” he said. “That’s all, really, that was being said. There was really nothing logical being said inside with the two teams. Nothing’s ever going to come of it. I had a hint when their crew guys—they’d just stare and they made little comments before the (practice), ‘Good luck today.’
“He got into me on pit road before we even (got to) the track, so I knew we were going to have to deal with some issues. … Our job is still to win a championship. We look pretty good on speed, especially compared to those guys.”
Harvick was 15th fastest in final practice.

Think of these thoughts
Why does Hamlin even care ?the win wasnt going to be taken away and given to him, Nascar doesnt and never has done that
And now theres one driver/team in the chase he really didnt  have to worry about --until now!

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SportingNews Power Poll After New Hampshire

Posted by imelda sovzky on Friday, September 24, 2010

SportingNews Power Poll After New Hampshire

Oh, what a weekend for Denny Hamlin. Even after spinning in the latter stages of the Sylvania 300, he showed the strength of his No. 11 Toyota and came back to finish second. Meanwhile, perhaps his toughest Chase competitor, Jimmie Johnson, had problems after his own spin left him with a finish in the 20s. It can't get much better for the No. 11, though his lead is only 35 points over Clint Bowyer.

1. Denny Hamlin (last week: 2nd). Has finished no worse than third in the last four Chase races dating to last season. He has it figured out
2. Clint Bowyer (7th). Yes, he won only because Tony Stewart ran out of gas, but he was the man, leading the most laps and sporting the best driver rating. He earned it.
3. Kevin Harvick (4th). Started 27th and slowly made his way to a fifth-place run. He's done that better than anyone all year.
4. Kyle Busch (1st). Didn't show the calm of his teammate in the face of adversity. But after a top 10 at New Hampshire , a strong run at Dover will keep Kyle very much in the mix.
5. Jeff Gordon (12th). The 24 team didn't gamble on fuel mileage and settled for sixth at Loudon—a sensible choice with nine races left.
6. Carl Edwards (3rd). Hard racing with Ford "teammate" AJ Allmendinger cost both drivers. Edwards came home 11th after running solidly in the top 10 for most of the afternoon.
7. Jamie McMurray (15th). "Fast" Jamie showed up at Loudon. Let's hope he stays around for the rest of the Chase, even though he can't win the title.
8. Tony Stewart (6th). Won the Sylvania 298, but, thanks to a fuel shortage, finished 24th in the Sylvania 300. Can't afford another burp in the Chase.
9. Kurt Busch (9th). After the race, Kurt said, "I was just over-driving. I wasn't quite in the zone. I wasn't quite feeling it today." Umm, Kurt, you know it's the Chase, right?
10. Ryan Newman (13th). Newman has three top 10s in last four races. Problem is, he preceded that run with nine double-digit finishes in 10 races.
11. Jimmie Johnson (5th). If Chasers get one mulligan, this was it for Johnson, who finished 25th after getting caught up in someone else's mess. He needs to do well at Dover to reset the tone.
12. David Reutimann (19th). Stayed out. Saved fuel. Stole a top 10.
13. Jeff Burton (10th). Had a top-five car, but not top-notch gas mileage. He ran out with two laps left and finished 15th—which is at least better than what Tony Stewart can say.
14. Juan Pablo Montoya (8th). Montoya's average running position was 13th. That's his worst since the Coca-Cola 600 back in May.
15. Greg Biffle (16th). Didn't look good in New Hampshire , but didn't look as bad as he did at Richmond . Dover now absolutely critical.
16. AJ Allmendinger (18th). Like Burton and Stewart, AJ ran out of gas. Of course, Burton and Stewart waited until Lap 299. AJ outfoxed everyone by doing it on Lap 98.
17. Matt Kenseth (11th). Yes, Loudon was a disappointment (23rd), but those in fantasy leagues must use him at Dover , where he has five straight top fives.
18. Kasey Kahne (22nd). The Richard Petty Motorsports post-race report states Kahne, "rallied back to finish 14th…" Can anything ending in 14th be considered a rally?
19. Dale Earnhardt Jr. (NR). The fourth-place finish at Loudon came from the middle of nowhere, despite glitches in the pits. A one-hit wonder or the promise of better things to come?
20. Martin Truex Jr. (20th) It would have been nice to see Truex running with teammate Reutimann … oh, well.
21. Brad Keselowski (23rd). The pole was a great place to start, but Keselowski couldn't crack the top 15 by the finish.
22. Sam Hornish Jr. (NR). If only the entire world were flat. Hornish picked up his first top 10 of the season and continued to show his most strength on NASCAR's flattest tracks.
23. Mark Martin (21st). His first race of the Chase looked a lot like his last race of the regular season—not very competitive. At least Dover is one of his favorite tracks.
24. Marcos Ambrose (14th). Never had his car handling right, but still will be fun to see him with RRM next year.
25. Joey Logano (17th). Fading back at the end, and contact from Kurt Busch made him fade farther, finishing 35th.

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Johnson edges Allmendinger for Dover pole

Posted by imelda sovzky

Johnson edges Allmendinger for Dover pole

DOVER, Del.-The best medicine for a bad run is a victory the next time out, and Jimmie Johnson took the first step in that direction Friday at Dover International Speedway.
With a lap at 155.736 mph (23.116 seconds), Johnson won the Coors Light Pole Award for Sunday’s AAA 400 Sprint Cup Series race at the Monster Mile, edging AJ Allmendinger (155.642 mph) for the top starting spot.
Mark Martin, Johnson’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate, initially qualified third but will start 42nd because his time was disallowed after the gas pressure in the right rear shock of his No. 5 Chevrolet was found to be too high in inspection.
Accordingly, Martin Truex Jr. (155.353 mph) will start third, followed by points leader Denny Hamlin and Juan Pablo Montoya.
“Certainly, this was a step in the right direction in momentum,” said Johnson, who finished 25th last Sunday at New Hampshire after a loose wheel forced him to the pits for an unscheduled green-flag stop. “Last weekend, we ran much better than where we finished. It stinks that we finished where we did, but there’s nothing we can really do about it, and to come out this weekend and qualify on the pole starts the weekend off on the right foot.
“It really creates a good situation for us in the race, having that first pit stall. Track position is very, very important here. It seems to be more important as each weekend goes by and each year goes by. … The best way to get track position is by qualifying on the front row, or up front, and we did that.”
The pole was Johnson’s second of the year, his third at Dover and the 25th of his career.
Johnson and Hamlin are the only drivers in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup in the top five. Greg Biffle qualified sixth, Kurt Busch eighth, Carl Edwards 10th, Kyle Busch 11th, Matt Kenseth 14th, Jeff Gordon 15th, Clint Bowyer 24th, Tony Stewart 25th, Jeff Burton 27th and Kevin Harvick 33rd.
Allmendinger thinks his car will race as well as it qualified.
“We went out there (in practice) and were really fast in race trim, I felt,” said Allmendinger, who drives the No. 43 Ford for Richard Petty Motorsports. “We did a couple of runs there and went right into qualifying trim and went really fast. I would have liked to have had the pole.
“When you’ve got the 48 (Johnson) behind you (in the qualifying order), it’s tough to hold on, but the confidence that my race team and I are building together is the most important thing.”
Jeff Green, Josh Wise and Ted Musgrave failed to qualify for the 43-car field.
By Reid Spencer

Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service

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Jimmie Johnson Wins Pole Dover AAA 400

Posted by imelda sovzky

Qualifying Fast Facts

Dover International Speedway
AAA 400 (40th Running)

Provided by NASCAR Statistics - Fri, September 24, 2010 @ 04:49 PM Eastern

Coors Light Pole Winner: Jimmie Johnson
Age: 35
Team : No. 48 - Lowe's/KOBALT Tools Chevrolet
Owner: Jeff Gordon
Crew Chief: Chad Knaus
Jimmie Johnson won the Coors Light Pole Award for the AAA 400 (40th Running) with a lap of 23.116 seconds, 155.736 mph.
This is his 25th pole in 319 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
This is his second pole and 21st top-10 start in 2010.
This is his third pole in 18 races at Dover International Speedway.

AJ Allmendinger (second) posted his eighth top-10 start of 2010 and his fourth in eight races at Dover International Speedway.
Martin Truex Jr. (third) posted his third top-10 start at Dover International Speedway. It is his ninth in 28 races this season.
Kevin Conway (40th) was the fastest qualifying rookie.

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Goodbye Wisdom Teeth

Posted by imelda sovzky on Thursday, September 23, 2010

I'm going to get my wisdom teeth removed 8 am Friday so I'm gonna go through hell for a few hours.  I'll hopefully be back soon.  This surgery is gonna be pretty rough.

Copyright those people in that blue box.


UPDATE: They're gone now.  From the moment they injected that sedative in my arm, I eventually woke up in my bed with no knowledge of any past events.  Cool!  My mouth is swollen but not that bad. Can't eat anything but soft foods like pudding and milk shakes for a few days...yeah I like that stuff but I could go for a Wendy's Double Quarter Pounder about now.  I love fast food.
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Sonic Adventure Shames Sega Once Again?

Posted by imelda sovzky

This Major Nelson dude posts the Top 20 list of Xbox Live Arcade games purchased each week (REMEMBER, just that week only...sales before and after this week don't count).  I guess this is from 9/13 to 9/19.  The list doesn't include the number of copies sold, but you can make assumptions if you want.

Top Arcade Titles (Full Versions purchased)
2 Monday Night Combat
4 Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light
6 Plants vs. Zombies
7 Shank
8 Trials HD
9 Castle Crashers
10 Castlevania Harmony of Despair
11 Deadliest Warrior
12 Hydro Thunder Hurricane
14 UNO
15 Sonic Adventure
16 Toy Soldiers
17 Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2
18 Game Room **
19 Magic: The Gathering
20 Battlefield 1943


Sonic Adventure came out 9/15, but still that should be enough for it to catch up since it's new and all.  15th place?  Behind Deadliest Warrior which came out two months ago?  Behind UNO which came out over FOUR YEARS AGO??  And also mention this new KOF Sky Stage and Space Invaders games which also came out on the 15th...and didn't appear here either.  Also Perfect Dark but that's several months old now, but BF1943 is older which really shames PD in my opinion...  Also you don't have ORA or AfterBurner which I guess are not surprising in the least.

Say what you want, but even though I questioned if Sega was going to release tons of Dreamcast games, would they do it?  Or is Sonic Adventure a mediocre game that shouldn't be used as a barometer for demand for Sonic/Dreamcast games?  Considering many complained about game glitches, we can assume this was a speedy port simply because Sega didn't want to waste too much on it.  Oh well if that's how they're gonna go it, then just don't go broke on us, please.


Oh yeah, I just got this silly e-mail from Sega of America that said Crazy Taxi is coming out in "November 2010" which I guess is a good sign.  Also, it says "More Dreamcast titles will be coming soon!" (in big letters) so you know Sega is diligently working to deliver video game goodness to us all!!
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Top 5 and 5 to watch: Dover

Posted by imelda sovzky

Top 5 and 5 to watch: Dover

By Roger Kuznia
Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service

Here's a look at the top five drivers in the Sprint Cup Series standings and five drivers to watch in Sunday's race at Dover International Speedway. All statistical references are for Sprint Cup races at Dover unless otherwise indicated. Driver rating is based on the past 11 races at the track.

1. Denny Hamlin, 77.5 driver rating. Behind only Daytona, Dover is Hamlin's worst track in terms of average finish—22.8 with two DNFs. However, he did have success there in May, finishing fourth for his first top 10 since 2007. With momentum of a second-place run at New Hampshire , it's not unreasonable to expect a strong finish.
2. Kevin Harvick, 75.2. He's the leader in top-five finishes this year, coming off his 12th of 2010 at New Hampshire . Interestingly, if Harvick finishes fifth in the final nine events, he wouldn't have enough points to have won any of the last three Chases. Wins are a must, but one likely won't come here for the No. 29. His average finish in the last nine Dover races is 19.0.
3. Kyle Busch, 101.6. Busch's best Chase finish came in 2007, the only year he's never had problems in one or both of the first two Chase races at New Hampshire and Dover. After pulling out a ninth-place finish last week at Loudon, Busch now may be just one race away from being a real contender. He won here in May.
4. Jeff Gordon, 90.0. His conservative strategy paid off at New Hampshire , where he climbed four spots in the standings. Gordon hasn't won at Dover since 2001, but he has had two poles in the last four Dover Chase races. But it remains an open question whether this team's experimentation the past two months will pay off.
5. Kurt Busch, 95.4. Working with old crew chief Pat Tryson, Busch led 99 laps in this race last year and finished fifth for only his sixth top 10 in 20 starts. Busch's performance has been largely hit or miss in the past nine races of 2010, and it's tough to predict a solid run for the No. 2 after misses at Richmond and New Hampshire .

5 to watch:

6. Jimmie Johnson, 113.8. He's led at least 81 laps in the last four races, and 225-plus in the last three. He may have won the race in May had he not sped on pit road, leading to comments from race winner Kyle Busch that the No. 18 got into Johnson's head. Drivers have long memories, and no doubt Johnson remembers what happened four months ago.
8. Greg Biffle, 112.2. After three straight subpar finishes entering Dover , it's time for Biffle to release the Kraken. That should happen, given that Dover has long been a Roush Fenway stronghold. Three of the top four in driver rating are Roushketeers, with Biffle at No. 2, Matt Kenseth No. 3 and Carl Edwards No. 4. Biffle has eight top 10s in the last nine races, including a win in the 2008 Chase. 10. Tony Stewart, 73.2. We can roast Stewart for pushing his gas mileage too far at Loudon, but who thought he would have made it to win the June race at Pocono last year? Stewart is too good to let one race faze him, and he does have three straight top 10s at the Monster Mile.
11. Matt Kenseth, 111.8. Dover is one place where Kenseth doesn't need security blanket Robbie Reiser to perform well. Kenseth has finished no worse than fourth in the last five races, and his lone win came in 2006. This is Kenseth's best shot at a Chase win, but after this, it's back to finishes between 10-15.
12. Clint Bowyer, 89.5. After Wednesday's slug to the solar plexus, which saw the No. 33 team lose 150 points for an illegal car at New Hampshire , it will be interesting to see how Bowyer and his team react. Bowyer has no top 10s in his last three starts, but he has qualified in the top 10 in three of the last four races. Bowyer has led only four laps in his career, the fewest of any Chase competitor.

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Hamlin hopes Dover is not his Waterloo again

Posted by imelda sovzky

Hamlin hopes Dover is not his Waterloo again

By Jim Pedley
Special to Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service

Things seem to be going Denny Hamlin's way as he pursues the first Sprint Cup championship of his career. He's first in points in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, he's on a mini-streak of two top-two finishes, his nearest competitor has imploded and he's had success at many of the remaining nine tracks on the schedule.
If he could do well in Sunday's AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway, he might be able to allow himself to start imagining what he would look like with his arms wrapped around the big silver trophy after the season-ending race in Homestead, Fla.
But based on history, the "if" is sizable as it pertains to Dover .
"We all know how Dover is for me," Hamlin said this week.
Those who love history and statistics all know.
Dover is not, as they say, a Hamlin track. The Monster Mile's high-banked, concrete surface seemingly has scuffed the 29-year-old driver's luck and confidence over the years.
His average finish in nine career starts at Dover is 22.8. That is by far, the worst among the 12 Chase drivers.
Hamlin's only top-five finishes at Dover were in spring races. In fall races—Chase races—he has finished 22nd, 38th, 38th and ninth. He has led just one Dover race. He has two DNFs.
With one race down in the 10-race Chase, with Clint Bowyer whacked back from second to 12th in points by a NASCAR penalty issued on Wednesday and with a 45-point lead over now-second place Kevin Harvick, Hamlin has selected his strategy for this weekend.
"We've just got to minimize a bad day again at Dover ," Hamlin said. "That's our goal. You've got to set a number (for finishing) that you're satisfied with, and try to reach that goal at Dover ."
And what is that number?
Hamlin didn't say.
He did say, however, the target number was affected by last week's pressure-easing second-place finish in the Chase-opener in New Hampshire .
"The number in which I hope to run just moved up like five spots," he said. "So that's just what we have to do. And it's not that we just run bad at Dover every time, it's just every time I went there, I either wrecked or broke something or ran terrible. So with the exception of the spring, that's about the only good run I've had there, so, yeah, we do shift our expectations based off of this week."
Hamlin also can take relief, of course, in the fact that his 2010 season has been the best of his career.
He has a series-leading six victories and his 11 top-five finishes is second best after Harvick's 12.
"I think the biggest thing," Hamlin said, "is we're competitive everywhere; competitive as in we can win races everywhere. We've shown we can win races and that means we've been up front a lot during the course of this season. For as many wins as we've had, we've had second- and third-place finishes as well. That means we've been up front a lot during the season and that's what it's going to take to win the championship—a low average finish and making sure you have everything in line and prepared in case something does happen."
But then again, this week it's Dover and there is that scary "if."
"Just if we can get past Dover ," he said as if he suddenly remembered his past there, "we've got a lot of really good tracks for us."

Fast facts
What: AAA 400
Where: Dover ( Del. ) International Speedway
When: Sunday, 1:15 p.m. ET
TV: ESPN, 1 p.m. ET
Radio: MRN/Sirius Satellite Ch. 128
Race distance: 400 laps/400 miles
Estimated pit window: 75-80 laps
Qualifying: Friday, 3:10 p.m. ET
2009 winner: Jimmie Johnson
2009 polesitter: Jimmie Johnson

Points leaders: 1. Denny Hamlin, 5,230; 2. Kevin Harvick, 5,185; 3. Kyle Busch, 5,168; 4. Jeff Gordon, 5,155; 5. Kurt Busch, 5,144; 6. Jimmie Johnson, 5,138; 7. Carl Edwards, 5,135; 8. Greg Biffle, 5,122; 9. Jeff Burton, 5,118; 10. Tony Stewart, 5,106; 11. Matt Kenseth, 5,094; 12. Clint Bowyer, 5,045.

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Posted by imelda sovzky

Clint Bowyer raced his way into the Chase capturing 12th place to start .
In New Hampshire he showed what it took to win and win from more experienced drivers .
Moving from 12th place to 2nd place was a accomplisment indeed ,
It was as soon as this was done there was alot of talk especially from the writers covering Nascar of why it should be changed because it didnt seem fair or right someone like Bowyer should move ahead of the more experienced drivers just because of one win.
"Like Bowyer" meaning not as experienced or widely known as other drivers.
In his careeer this was his 2nd Sprintcup win and a huge one ,The first race of the 2010 Chase To The Championship
He quickly became a favorite among fans and a driver deserving to be the chase But , the media didnt like it any many drivers and owners didnt either.
At Richmond where he clinched his chase berth he had a car inspected that didnt really meet Nascar rule book settings .
At New Hamshire there were questions also on that car, as per Nascar ,nothing found wrong with the cars that wouldve changed the out come of the races .
He was fined 150 points Back to 12th his crew chief and car chief were also both fined and are suspended from doing there duties for six weeks .
Almost the entire part of the Chase.
Will this affect Bowyer and the possibilty of him doing even better in the 11 races remaining
Most definitely be sure.
Is this the way to handle especially ,during the chase, penalties given out when it would not have changed the out come of the race  NO!
This is one of the biggest mistakes Nascar has ever done .
You should not be pentalized points during the chase for infractions that didnt alter the outcome of the race or your position.
This is unheard  of ,you can say what may but there have been other drivers and crews that have done worse during the chase only to have there wrists slapped .
NASCAR should reverse ther decision Now and put Bowyer back where he deserves to be ,2nd place and to hell that he isnt a Jimmie Johnson or Dale Junior
It isnt right !!
Right or Wrong ?