News and Views - Volume 13 February 13 - 19, 2012

Posted by imelda sovzky on Sunday, February 19, 2012

News and Views - Volume 13
For the week of February 13 - 19, 2012
The racing season begins this weekend with the Budweiser Shootout on Saturday, February 18th!  Check out Daytona International Speedway's Schedule of Events for this week!  

And NASCAR Now is back on ESPN - Check out their TV schedule this week. We're counting down to the Green Flag!

This week is the introduction of Fan4Racing Forum. Fans will need to register to join this season's race discussions.  Fans can discuss before, during and after each race. Also, as the season progresses, this will be the place to discuss current hot topics. 

And...Just a reminder to fans to visit the  NASCAR Contest page to learn about playing for the 2012 season. and how to submit your team. The more entries the more prizes to be awarded. 

Let's begin with news for today...

Sunday, February 19, 2012
2012 NSCS Daytona 500 Qualifying Notes
Unlike qualifying for other NSCS point races, the Daytona 500 has a unique qualifying method where only the top-two fastest in qualifying are locked in, and the rest of the starting lineup will be determined on how the drivers finish in the Gatorade Duel at Daytona (two 150-mile races) on Thursday.

Those that are guaranteed a starting position are those that were in the top-35 2011 owner points; as well as, the top two non-top 35 teams finishers in each Duel race. The remaining drivers to make up the starting lineup revert back to Sunday's fastest qualifying times; as well as, a spot left open for being the most recent past champion. 

Sitting on the pole for the 2012 Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway, and with a qualifying lap speed of 194.738mph, will be Carl Edwards, and on the outside pole with a qualifying lap speed of 194.087mph, will be Edwards' Roush Fenway Racing teammate, Greg Biffle.

This was Edwards' 1st series pole at Daytona International Speedway - giving Roush Fenway Racing their first Daytona 500 pole since Greg Biffle did in 2004 - and his 11th series career pole in 266 NSCS races.

Rounding out the top-ten fastest qualifiers were Dale Earnhardt Jr. (194.028) who was third fastest, Marcos Ambrose (193.999) fourth, Casey Mears (193.844) fifth, Jeff Gordon (193.803) sixth, Martin Truex Jr. (193.665) seventh, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (193.665) eighth, the defending Daytona 500 champion, Trevor Bayne (193.615) ninth, and Tony Stewart (193.607) was the tenth fastest in qualifying.

During post-qualifying inspection, the No. 15 5-hour Energy Toyota Camry driven by Clint Bowyer failed the post race inspection as the car was found to be 60/1000ths too low on the left front. This will result in Bowyer's qualifying time to be disallowed, and will have to start at the rear of the field in the Daytona 500.

The 41st annual Gatorade Duel at Daytona to complete the full Daytona 500 starting lineup will get underway around 2:20pm ET on Thursday, Feb 23rd, with SPEED beginning their pre-race coverage at 1pm ET.

How to Qualify for the Daytona 500 Press Release
Qualifying for the Daytona 500 is unlike any other auto racing qualifying procedure. Drivers have two chances to qualify for the season-opening race, as opposed to the usual format of one qualifying session per event.

The first chance comes via Daytona 500 Qualifying, which will be held Sunday, Feb 19. The other chance is the Gatorade Duel at Daytona, two 150-mile qualifying races held on Thursday, Feb 23. 

Below is a breakdown of the Daytona 500 qualifying procedure:

Daytona 500 Qualifying Day
  • Each team may run two laps with the fast lap setting the qualifying time. The two fastest qualifiers earn starting positions one and two and are the only guaranteed positions, filling the front row for the Daytona 500.
  • The Gatorade Duel at Daytona, two 150-mile qualifying races, will determine staring positions for the Daytona 500 beyond the front row. In the event of cancellation, the field will be set according to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Rule Book.
Gatorade Duel
  • The eligible highest ranked 35 in 2011 year car owner points will be assigned to Gatorade Duel races based on their final 2011 car owner points. Cars with odd-numbered owner points positions will compete in the first Gatorade Duel race; even-numbered owner points positions will compete in the second race.
  • The only exception is that the fastest qualifier from Daytona 500 Qualifying will start on the pole in the first Gatorade Duel race and the second fastest will start on the pole in the second race, regardless of 2011 car owner point standings.
  • Owners who failed to finish in the top 35 of the 2011 car owner points will be assigned to the Gatorade Duel races based on qualifying times. The fastest qualifying owner goes to the first Duel race; the next to the second race and alternating through remaining entries.
  • The actual starting grids for the Gatorade Duel races are based on qualifying times.
Daytona 500 Lineup
  • The two fastest qualifiers set staring positions one and two.
  • Finishing positions in the Gatorade Duel races determine the other starting positions in the Daytona 500.
  • The top two non-top 35 teams in each Duel race will earn a spot in the Daytona 500.
  • Based on their finish in the first Duel race, the eligible highest-ranked 35 in 2011 car owner points plus the two highest finishing non-top 35 teams will be lined up on the inside row (odd-numbered starting positions).
  • Based on their finish in the second Duel race, the eligible highest-ranked 35 plus the two highest finishing non-top 35 teams will be lined up on the outside row (even-numbered starting positions).
  • The remaining positions will be filled based on qualifying.
  • If one or both cars on the front row are not top-35 teams, the number of cars that get in based on time are reduced accordingly.
  • The 43rd starting position will be assigned to any car owner who has the most recent past NASCAR Sprint Cup champion who did not make the 500 field by any other method providing the driver competed in the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. If the 43rd position remains unused it will be assigned to the next highest qualifying time.
Bottom line, here's who gets locked into the Daytona 500 field:
  • The top-two qualifiers from Sunday
  • The remaining top-35 guaranteed starters
  • Four drivers from the Gatorade Duel at Daytona (two non-top 35 from each race)
  • Remaining drivers not making the field through the above methods can fall back on Sunday's qualifying times or being a past champion.

Shootout Eligibility returns to its roots for 2013
NASCAR today released the eligibility requirements for the 2013 Shootout at Daytona, an announcement that signals a return to the fan-favorite preseason event's roots.

Next season's field will consist of 2012 Coors Light Pole winners and past Shootout winners who have attempted to qualify for at least one race during the 2012 season.

Eligibility rules for next season's annual non-points race mirror those from 1979-2008, and puts greater emphasis on each weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup series Coors Light Pole qualifying session.
"Fans have expressed their desire to see this event return to its original eligibility rules," said Steve O'Donnell, NASCAR senior vice president of racing operations. "We listened and decided it would be best to return to the eligibility rules of years past adding further meaning to pole qualifying for each NASCAR Sprint Cup race."
This announcement comes prior to 2012's first qualifying session, adding intrigue to an already important event. Today's fastest qualifier, in addition to winning the pole for next Sunday's 54th Annual Daytona 500 (Feb 26 at 1pm ET on FOX), will also earn a spot in next year's Shootout. Two Daytona 500 starting positions will be locked in after today's qualifying session. The fastest two cars in qualifying will sit on the front row of The Great American Race.

Last night, Kyle Busch won his first Shootout at Daytona, locking up a spot in next year's field. Busch passed defending series champion Tony Stewart in the tri-oval, edging the three-time titlist by a margin of .013 seconds - the closest in Shootout history.

Last season, 18 different drivers won a pole.


Leader of the Pack - Busch edges Stewart to win thrilling Budweiser Shootout
Kyle Busch used incomparable driving skills to nip defending NASCAR Sprint Cup series champion Tony Stewart at the finish line by a record 0.013 seconds in Saturday night's 34th annual Budweiser Shootout at Daytona International Speedway.

Busch who was able to save the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota despite it being sideways a couple of times during the race, found himself in eighth position on the final green-white-checkered restart. With smoke coming form the back of his car, Busch and Stewart pulled away from the rest of the pack setting up a thrilling final duel for the checkered flag coming off of Turn 4.

Busch timed the slingshot move perfectly to edge Stewart at the start/finish line. 

Read more from DIS-PR

2012 NSCS Budweiser Shootout Race Notes
With the first NSCS race of the 2012 season in the Budweiser Shootout at Daytona International Speedway, came a night of the return to pack racing, but also came a night of crashes - mainly due to bump-drafting the left corner of the cars while going into the turns.

After five cautions and a green-white-checkered (flags) restart, it was Kyle Busch with a sling-shot move on race leader Tony Stewart coming to the checkered flag to capture his first career shootout win.

Busch and Stewart (who finished 0.013 seconds behind) were followed by Marcos Ambrose who finished third, Brad Keselowski finishing fourth and Denny Hamlin finishing fifth.

Rounding out the top-ten positions were Greg Biffle finishing sixth, Ryan Newman seventh, Clint Bowyer eighth, Carl Edwards ninth and Juan Pablo Montoya finishing in the tenth position.

Race Notes:
Average Speed - 124.096 mph
Time of Race - 1 hr. 39 mins. 07 sec.
Margin of Victory - 0.013 seconds
Lead Changes - 26 among 13 drivers
Cautions - 5 for 22 laps
Attendance - 82,000

From Timing and Scoring provided by NASCARmedia

Saturday, February 18, 2012
2012 NSCS Daytona 500 Second Practice Session Speeds
Just like in the Saturday morning NSCS Daytona 500 first practice session, it was once again Greg Biffle, with a lap speed of 193.241mph, the fastest during the second (pre-qualifying) practice session at Daytona International Speedway held Saturday afternoon.

The defending Daytona 500 champion, Trevor Bayne with a lap speed of 193.154mph, was the second fastest, and was followed by Martin Truex, Jr. (193.071mph) who was third fastest, the defending series champion, Tony Stewart (193.042mph) fourth and Mark Martin (193.034mph) was the fifth fastest.

Rounding out the top-ten fastest during practice were Paul Menard (193.001) who was sixth fastest, Carl Edwards (192.988) seventh, Marcos Ambrose (192.976) eighth, Jeff Gordon (192.972) ninth and AJ Allmendinger (192.881) posting the tenth fastest lap speed.

The teams will return to the track Sunday afternoon for the 1pm ET scheduled qualifying session (weather permitting) with television coverage provided by FOX.

2012 NSCS Daytona 500 Second Practice Session Speeds

Pos Car Driver Team Time Speed Lap ## LapsFastest Next
116Greg Biffle3M Ford46.574193.24125---.------.---
2*21Trevor Bayne(i)Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford46.595193.15488-0.021-0.021
356Martin Truex Jr.NAPA Auto Parts Toyota46.615193.07155-0.041-0.02
414Tony StewartOffice Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet46.622193.04222-0.048-0.007
555Mark MartinAaron's Toyota46.624193.03422-0.05-0.002
627Paul MenardMenards/Peak Chevrolet46.632193.00155-0.058-0.008
799Carl EdwardsFastenal Ford46.635192.98822-0.061-0.003
89Marcos AmbroseStanley Ford46.638192.97622-0.064-0.003
924Jeff GordonDrive to End Hunger Chevrolet46.639192.97228-0.065-0.001
1022AJ AllmendingerShell Pennzoil Dodge46.661192.88155-0.087-0.022
1143Aric AlmirolaSmithfield Helping Hungry Homes Ford46.666192.8625-0.092-0.005
1288Dale Earnhardt Jr.Diet Mountain Dew/National Guard Chevrolet46.67192.84355-0.096-0.004
1317Matt KensethBest Buy Ford46.684192.78688-0.11-0.014
146Ricky Stenhouse Jr.(i)Ford EcoBoost Ford46.685192.78125-0.111-0.001
1548Jimmie JohnsonLowe's Chevrolet46.697192.73255-0.123-0.012
1642Juan Pablo MontoyaTarget Chevrolet46.711192.67425-0.137-0.014
1713Casey MearsGEICO Ford46.719192.64155-0.145-0.008
1829Kevin HarvickBudweiser Chevrolet46.765192.45288-0.191-0.046
192Brad KeselowskiMiller Lite Dodge46.794192.33288-0.22-0.029
2039Ryan NewmanU.S. ARMY/Quicken Loans Chevrolet46.819192.2355-0.245-0.025
2120Joey LoganoThe Home Depot Toyota46.845192.12388-0.271-0.026
2215Clint Bowyer5-hour Energy Toyota46.849192.10755-0.275-0.004
2334David RaganScorpion Truck Bedliners Ford46.931191.77188-0.357-0.082
245Kasey KahneFarmers Insurance Chevrolet46.977191.58328-0.403-0.046
2531Jeff BurtonCaterpillar Chevrolet47.021191.40488-0.447-0.044
2610Danica Patrick(i) Chevrolet47.034191.35158-0.46-0.013
27*09Kenny Wallace(i)American Ethanol Toyota47.05191.28657-0.476-0.016
2818Kyle BuschM&M's Brown Toyota47.063191.23388-0.489-0.013
29*36Dave BlaneyOllie's Bargain Outlet Chevrolet47.104191.06788-0.53-0.041
30*30David StremmeInception Motorsports Toyota47.139190.92528-0.565-0.035
3133Elliott Sadler(i)General Mills/Kroger Chevrolet47.148190.88888-0.574-0.009
3211Denny HamlinFedEx Express Toyota47.195190.69822-0.621-0.047
33*32Terry LabonteC&J Energy Ford47.219190.60188-0.645-0.024
34*26Tony Raines(i)Front Row Motorsports Ford47.247190.48888-0.673-0.028
35*97Bill ElliottAM-FMEnergyWood&PelletStoves Toyota47.287190.32788-0.713-0.04
361Jamie McMurrayBass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet47.304190.25922-0.73-0.017
3751Kurt Chevrolet47.334190.13825-0.76-0.03
3878Regan SmithFurniture Row Racing Chevrolet47.359190.03855-0.785-0.025
39*40Michael WaltripAaron's Dream Machine Toyota47.367190.00655-0.793-0.008
40*98Michael McDowellNo.98 KLOVE/Curb Records Ford Ford47.37189.99455-0.796-0.003
41*87Joe Nemechek(i)AM FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves47.374189.97825-0.8-0.004
4247Bobby LabonteKroger Toyota47.567189.20788-0.993-0.193
4338David GillilandMHP/Power Pak Pudding Ford47.573189.18355-0.999-0.006
44*37Mike Wallace(i) Ford47.642188.90955-1.068-0.069
4593David ReutimannBurger King Toyota47.686188.73555-1.112-0.044
4683Landon CassillBurger King Toyota47.695188.69925-1.121-0.009
47*7Robby GordonMAPEI/Menards/SPEED Energy Dodge47.988187.54725-1.414-0.293
48*49JJ YeleyAmerica Israel Racing Toyota48.123187.02125-1.549-0.135
49*23Robert Richardson Jr.North Texas Pipe Toyota48.229186.6155-1.655-0.106

(i) Ineligible for Points in this Series
# Denotes Rookie
* Required to Qualify on Time

From Timing and Scoring provided by NASCARmedia

2012 NSCS Daytona 500 First Practice Session Speeds & Qualifying Order
The 2012 NSCS Daytona 500 first practice session at Daytona International Speedway got underway Saturday morning, as drivers and teams concentrated on their qualifying setups.

With a lap speed of 193.395mph, it was Greg Biffle posting the fastest lap, while Marcos Ambrose was second fastest with a lap speed of 193.349mph, and they were followed by Jeff Gordon (193.150mph) who was third fastest and Paul Menard (192.810mph) was fifth fastest.

Rounding out the top-ten fastest during practice were Dale Earnhardt Jr. (192.806mph) who was sixth fastest, defending series champion Tony Stewart (192.707mph) seventh, Matt Kenseth (192.649mph) eighth, Aric Almirola (192.641mph) ninth and Carl Edwards (192.489mph) posting the tenth fastest lap speed.

The qualifying order was also set today and was determined by a drawing instead of being based upon practice speeds, and it will be Paul Menard hitting the track first.

The teams will return to the track for their 2pm - 3:45pm ET scheduled (pre-qualifying) second practice session before returning Sunday for qualifying - which is set to get underway at 1pm ET with television coverage provided by FOX.

2012 NSCS Daytona 500 First Practice Session Speeds

PosCarDriver Team Time SpeedLap ## LapsFastestNext
116Greg Biffle3M Ford46.537193.39588---.------.---
29Marcos AmbroseStanley Ford46.548193.34955-0.011-0.011
324Jeff GordonDrive to End Hunger Chevrolet46.596193.1555-0.059-0.048
4*21Trevor Bayne(i)Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford46.661192.88158-0.124-0.065
527Paul MenardMenards/Peak Chevrolet46.678192.8158-0.141-0.017
688Dale Earnhardt Jr.Diet Mountain Dew/National Guard Chevrolet46.679192.80655-0.142-0.001
714Tony StewartOffice Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet46.703192.70755-0.166-0.024
817Matt KensethBest Buy Ford46.717192.6491111-0.18-0.014
943Aric AlmirolaSmithfield Helping Hungry Homes Ford46.719192.64155-0.182-0.002
1099Carl EdwardsFastenal Ford46.756192.48955-0.219-0.037
1155Mark MartinAaron's Toyota46.811192.26355-0.274-0.055
126Ricky Stenhouse   Jr.(i)Ford EcoBoost Ford46.855192.08288-0.318-0.044
1310Danica Patrick(i) Chevrolet46.881191.97588-0.344-0.026
1429Kevin HarvickBudweiser Chevrolet46.883191.96788-0.346-0.002
1548Jimmie JohnsonLowe's Chevrolet46.887191.95122-0.35-0.004
1642Juan Pablo MontoyaTarget Chevrolet46.912191.84988-0.375-0.025
175Kasey KahneFarmers Insurance Chevrolet46.917191.82858-0.38-0.005
1822AJ AllmendingerShell Pennzoil Dodge46.93191.7751111-0.393-0.013
192Brad KeselowskiMiller Lite Dodge46.945191.71488-0.408-0.015
2020Joey LoganoThe Home Depot Toyota46.962191.644811-0.425-0.017
2131Jeff BurtonCaterpillar Chevrolet46.963191.6488-0.426-0.001
2239Ryan NewmanU.S. ARMY/Quicken Loans Chevrolet46.99191.5388-0.453-0.027
2356Martin Truex Jr.NAPA Auto Parts Toyota46.992191.52288-0.455-0.002
2415Clint Bowyer5-hour Energy Toyota47.023191.39655-0.486-0.031
25*09Kenny Wallace(i)American Ethanol Toyota47.071191.20188-0.534-0.048
2634David RaganScorpion Truck Bedliners Ford47.097191.0951111-0.56-0.026
2751Kurt Chevrolet47.138190.92928-0.601-0.041
2818Kyle BuschM&M's Brown Toyota47.179190.76358-0.642-0.041
2933Elliott Sadler(i)General Mills/Kroger Chevrolet47.191190.71488-0.654-0.012
30*30David StremmeInception Motorsports Toyota47.199190.68255-0.662-0.008
3113Casey MearsGEICO Ford47.211190.63488-0.674-0.012
3211Denny HamlinFedEx Express Toyota47.234190.54158-0.697-0.023
33*32Terry LabonteC&J Energy Ford47.286190.33155-0.749-0.052
34*40Michael WaltripAaron's Dream Machine Toyota47.31190.23525-0.773-0.024
3578Regan SmithFurniture Row Racing Chevrolet47.327190.16625-0.79-0.017
36*36Dave BlaneyOllie's Bargain Outlet Chevrolet47.355190.05458-0.818-0.028
37*87Joe Nemechek(i)AM-FMEnergyWood&PelletStoves Toyota47.362190.02658-0.825-0.007
38*26Tony Raines(i)Front Row Motorsports Ford47.383189.94228-0.846-0.021
391Jamie McMurrayBass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet47.466189.60925-0.929-0.083
4047Bobby LabonteKroger Toyota47.533189.34288-0.996-0.067
41*98Michael McDowellNo.98 KLOVE/Curb Records Ford Ford47.537189.32655-1-0.004
42*97Bill ElliottAM FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves47.6189.07628-1.063-0.063
4338David GillilandMHP/Power Pak Pudding Ford47.722188.59225-1.185-0.122
44*37Mike Wallace(i) Ford47.799188.28855-1.262-0.077
4583Landon CassillBurger King Toyota47.87188.00988-1.333-0.071
4693David ReutimannBurger King Toyota47.993187.52755-1.456-0.123
47*7Robby GordonMAPEI/Menards/SPEED Energy Dodge48.171186.83455-1.634-0.178
48*49JJ YeleyAmerica Israel Racing Toyota48.226186.62156-1.689-0.055

2012 NSCS Daytona 500 Qualifying Order

#Car #DriverTeam
127Paul MenardMenards/Peak Chevrolet
21Jamie McMurrayBass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet
351Kurt Chevrolet
413Casey MearsGEICO Ford
599Carl EdwardsFastenal Ford
620Joey LoganoThe Home Depot Toyota
711Denny HamlinFedEx Express Toyota
839Ryan NewmanU.S. ARMY/Quicken Loans Chevrolet
916Greg Biffle3M Ford
109Marcos AmbroseStanley Ford
1114Tony StewartOffice Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet
1210Danica Patrick(i) Chevrolet
132Brad KeselowskiMiller Lite Dodge
1443Aric AlmirolaSmithfield Helping Hungry Homes Ford
1547Bobby LabonteKroger Toyota
1724Jeff GordonDrive to End Hunger Chevrolet
1831Jeff BurtonCaterpillar Chevrolet
1929Kevin HarvickBudweiser Chevrolet
2042Juan Pablo MontoyaTarget Chevrolet
2122AJ AllmendingerShell Pennzoil Dodge
2233Elliott Sadler(i)General Mills/Kroger Chevrolet
2318Kyle BuschM&M's Brown Toyota
246Ricky Stenhouse Jr.(i)Ford EcoBoost Ford
2548Jimmie JohnsonLowe's Chevrolet
2688Dale Earnhardt Jr.Diet Mountain Dew/National Guard Chevrolet
2783Landon CassillBurger King Toyota
2856Martin Truex Jr.NAPA Auto Parts Toyota
2917Matt KensethBest Buy Ford
3078Regan SmithFurniture Row Racing Chevrolet
3155Mark MartinAaron's Toyota
325Kasey KahneFarmers Insurance Chevrolet
3315Clint Bowyer5-hour Energy Toyota
3493David ReutimannBurger King Toyota
3534David RaganScorpion Truck Bedliners Ford
3638David GillilandMHP/Power Pak Pudding Ford
3797* Bill ElliottAM FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves Toyota
3887* Joe Nemechek(i)AM FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves Toyota
3921* Trevor Bayne(i)Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford
4040* Michael WaltripAaron's Dream Machine Toyota
419* Kenny Wallace(i)American Ethanol Toyota
4236* Dave BlaneyOllie's Bargain Outlet Chevrolet
4326* Tony Raines(i)Ford
4437* Mike Wallace(i) Ford
4532* Terry LabonteC&J Energy Ford
4623* Robert Richardson Jr.(i)North Texas Pipe Toyota
4749* JJ YeleyAmerica Israel Racing Toyota
487* Robby GordonMAPEI/Menards/SPEED Energy Dodge
4930* David StremmeInception Motorsports Toyota
5098* Michael McDowellNo.98 KLOVE/Curb Records Ford Ford

(i) Ineligible for Points in this Series
# Denotes Rookie
* Required to Qualify on Time

From Timing & Scoring Provided by NASCARmedia

Truex draws the pole for Bud Shootout
Martin Truex Jr. will lead the 25-car field to the green flag in the 34th annual Budweiser Shootout at Daytona tonight at Daytona International Speedway. Truex secured the top starting position through the random selection process that took place Friday night at the SPEED Stage.

The starting lineup was determined at the annual Budweiser Shootout Draw Party during which the participating drivers selected a Budweiser bottle featuring a number behind the Budweiser label. The number serves as the driver's starting position.

Truex was the 18th driver to participate in the annual draw party and will make his second start in the Budweiser Shootout on Saturday night.
"It's just cool," Truex said after picking the pole position. "I haven't been in this race in a few years. I absolutely hated being down here (those years) and watching this race, so it's cool just to be in it and to get the pole is icing on the cake."
"My car was really good today in practice," he continued. "I was happy with it. It drove really good. I heard a lot of guys were having some handling issues, but my car was great, so I'm pretty excited about it. (My car) had good speed and was able to stay up in the front of the pack in the draft. We're looking forward to tomorrow night."
The defending winner of the Budweiser Shootout, Kurt Busch, will start from the sixth position while Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet drew the 22nd starting spot.

The 34th annual Budweiser Shootout at Daytona is scheduled for an 8:10 pm ET start tonight. FOX will provide live television coverage of the event beginning with their pre-race show that will start at 8pm ET.
StartCar No.Driver
156Martin Truex Jr.
218Kyle Busch
32Brad Keselowski
41Jamie McMurray
534David Ragan
651Kurt Busch
716Greg Biffle
888Dale Earnhardt Jr.
922AJ Allmendinger
1020Joey Logano
1199Carl Edwards
1231Jeff Burton
1339Ryan Newman
1424Jeff Gordon
1514Tony Stewart
1611Denny Hamlin
1715Clint Bowyer
1848Jimmie Johnson
195Kasey Kahne
2055Michael Waltrip
219Marcos Ambrose
2229Kevin Harvick
2317Matt Kenseth
2427Paul Menard
2542Juan Pablo Montoya

From Elevation Group of Companies for Budweiser Racing-PR

BK Racing Officially Announces Team, Drivers for 2012
BK Racing today officially announced plans to compete in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series full-time beginning this weekend at the Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, FL. The team will enter two Toyota Camrys numbered 83 and 93, out of its headquarters in Statesville, NC. The team is led by an ownership group consisting of experienced and successful business people including Wayne Press, Scott Gunderson and others. General Manager Harry McMullen will lead the team at the race shop and at the track.

The team has already come to terms with experienced, winning drivers for the season. Two-time Sprint Cup series winner David Reutimann will pilot the No. 93 Toyota in the Daytona 500 and former NASCAR Nationwide series Rookie of the Year winner Landon Cassill will race the No. 83 in the Daytona 500 and for the balance of the 2012 season. In addition, the team also announced that 2003 NASCAR Camping World Truck series champion Travis Kvapil will be behind the wheel of the No. 93 Toyota beginning at the second race of the season in Phoenix, AZ. The team will debut the cars Saturday morning to prepare for Sunday's qualifying session.

BK Racing has acquired certain assets from the former Red Bull Racing operation and has moved into a race shop that has all the essential equipment to prepare winning cars. This immediate success allowed the team drivers to feel confident about this season.

BK Racing will make official sponsorship announcements in the near future.

From Breaking Limits Marketing for BK Racing-PR

Means Motorsports Lands Reed Sorenson to start 2012 season
Means Motorsports lands Reed Sorenson to start 2012. The No. 52 Chevrolet will be driven in Daytona's DRIVE4COPD 300 by Georgia native, Reed Sorenson. The talented driver wrapped up 2011 by finishing fifth in points for NASCAR's Nationwide series. Sorenson's career in the series consists of four wins, two poles and an outstanding 85 top-ten finishes.

Sorenson also has seven years of Sprint Cup experience, which includes 15 top-ten finishes. 
Jimmy Means, owner of the team states, "Means Motorsports is certainly excited about our chances of getting off to a great start this season, especially when you consider Reed's skills, experience, and the strong fifth place finish he had in last year's event.
We have had some success with sponsorship for the first race of the season and we can only assume the opportunities will increase with the addition fo Sorenson as our driver."
From Means Motorsports-PR

Earnhardt Ganassi Racing signs Kyle Larson
Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates signed 19-year-old Kyle Larson to its roster as a developmental driver. The Elk Grove, CA native took the racing world by storm in 2011 - his first season competing on the national racing scene. Larson captured 22 major professional feature wins, including victories in the World of Outlaws Sprint Car series (WoO), all three United States Auto Club (USAC) National Divisions and the American Sprint Car series (ASCS).

Read more from Earnhardt Ganassi

Reminder of Candlelight Remembrance of Dale Earnhardt
Dale Earnhardt, Inc. will be holding their annual "Candlelight Remembrance of Dale Earnhardt" today from 6pm until 9pm. The showroom will be open to the public and will be illuminated with candles. Commemorative decals and prayer cards will be distributed to all in attendance. A memorial guest book will be available throughout the day, for those who would like to share their memories of Dale.

Fans are invited to attend at Dale Earnhardt, Inc. on Highway 3, in Moorseville, NC. Those unable to attend are encouraged to light a candle at home that evening in remembrance of Dale Earnhardt's remarkable spirit and life, and all fans of Dale Earnhardt are asked to help "Continue The Legend" through your support of The Dale Earnhardt Foundation and Dale's passions: Children, Education, and Environmental/Wildlife Conservation.

Christopher Myers
The 19-year-old son of NASCAR on FOX studio host Chris Myers has been killed in a car accident. The network says Myers will not be part of Fox's coverage of the season-opening Daytona 500. Christopher Myers was killed Thursday in Southern CA, where the family resides.

SPEED studio host John Roberts will replace Myers at Daytona International Speedway. Roberts will assume Myers' responsibilities as host of Saturday night's studio show before the Budweiser Shootout, during Sunday's qualifying, and the pre-race show for Feb 26 season-opening Daytona 500. Fox says Myers will be given as much time off as he needs.

From ESPN/Associated Press

Friday, February 17, 2012
#48 car has parts confiscated by NASCAR
NASCAR officials have confiscated the C-posts from Jimmie Johnson's Lowe's Chevrolet today, after discovering what are being called "illegal modifications" in pre-Daytona 500 inspection. Multiple sources say issues were found on the C-posts - the bodywork on either side of the rear window - on Johnson's Daytona 500 entry.

NASCAR Sprint Cup series Director John Darby said moments ago that suspensions "are not out of the realm of possibility." The team will be allowed to make repairs, and the other Hendrick team cars - driven by Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Kasey Kahne - passed pre-qualifying inspection without an issue.

From Sirius-Speedway

PRN Celebrates 20 Years of "Up to Speed" at Daytona Beach
PRN has been visiting the Volusia Mall in Daytona Beach for 20 years but there has been a lot more than just shopping taking place. This will mark the 20th year in a row the Performance Racing Network has hosted talk shows from the mall for a live audience featuring the top names in NASCAR.

One of the most popular free events on the Daytona calendar for NASCAR fans, the PRN "Up to Speed" from Daytona Beach annually draws thousands of attendees for the live show and millions of listeners for the broadcast heard on some 100 stations around the world.

Since 1993, the courtyard of the Volusia Mall just across the street from Daytona International Speedway has played host to the nationally syndicated one-hour talk shows. NASCAR legend Benny Parsons was the host for 15 years along with PRN's Mark Garrow. Kyle Petty has more recently joined Garrow on the stage as they chat with the drivers on the eve of the Daytona 500.

Over the years the guest list has included notables such as Dale Earnhardt, Bill Elliott, Dale Jarrett and most of the drivers competing today in the NASCAR Nationwide and Sprint Cup series have spent some time with the race fans on the PRN stage.

Jeff Gordon has been a regular participant for his entire career but that almost wasn't the case. The very early shows had a very sparse set, the drivers just congregated behind the stage and waited for their name to be called. The drivers were separated from the fans by a row of large potted plants and palm trees. During Gordon's second appearance on the show some over-zealous fans knocked over the trees trying to get Gordon's autograph, almost hitting the young driver.

Gordon said, "This show is great but you may need more security." Since that time there has been ample security and the crashing palm tree incident has not been repeated.
"This is a real treat to give the fans a chance to see and hear their heroes close up" said Doug Rice, President of PRN. "We've had some fans show up every year for every show, that shows some true loyalty. The drivers have been gracious to give their time and it's worked well for two decades."
The PRN "Up to Speed" shows are carried on approximately 100 stations and can be heard live on  Video broadcasts of each show will be available on the website the following day. This year shows are from 6-7 pm ET on Feb 21, 22 and 23 and there is no admission for the shows. Seating is available on a first come first serve basis.
"Our show producer Alicia Lingerfeldt has scheduled another awesome lineup this year, which fans can find at the PRN website," added Rice. "If fans are visiting Daytona for the race, this is a 'don't miss' event on their schedule."

See the schedule and learn more from Performance Racing Network-PR

Pat Monahan of MultiPlatinum Grammy-Winning Group Train to Sing at Daytona
Pat Monahan, lead singer of the three-time Grammy-winning group Train, will sing the National Anthem for the 54th running of the Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb 26 at Daytona International Speedway (Fox, 1pm ET).

Read more from DIS-PR

Three-time Olympic Gold Medalist Swimmer Ryan Lochte to be Grand Marshal 
Ryan Lochte, three-time Olympic gold medalist swimmer and Daytona Beach native, will serve as Grand Marshal for the first of two Gatorade Duel at Daytona 150-mile qualifying races on Thursday, Feb 23 at Daytona International Speedway.

Read more from DIS-PR

NASCAR nixes Confederate flag display
Fans of the Dukes of Hazzard television show remember the famous (or infamous) General Lee.

However, the iconic car won't be part of a planned pre-race ceremony at Phoenix International Raceway after NASCAR stepped in and tabled plans to include the General Lee due to the prominent placement of the Confederate flag on its roof.

Pro golfer Bubba Watson was to have driven the car in the ceremony to be held prior to the March 4 Sprint Cup race at PIR but NASCAR has decided to nix the idea.

Read more from Eye on NASCAR/CBS Sports

NASCAR .com offers RaceBuddy Coverage of the Nationwide series
NASCAR .com the official online destination of NASCAR, hits the track in 2012 by offering RaceBuddy, the award-winning online companion viewing experience, for a host of NASCAR Nationwide series races. RaceBuddy will offer live complementary video for 25 of ESPN and ESPN2's NASCAR Nationwide series telecasts, courtesy of Nationwide Insurance, in addition to season long Scanner coverage. Starting with the NASCAR Nationwide series Drive4COPD 300 from Daytona International Speedway, RaceBuddy will also be available throughout the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup series and Camping World Truck series seasons.

RaceBuddy will offer two mosaics with a mix of eight in-car and stationary cameras positioned around the track including:

Backstretch Cam: Through the Backstretch Cam, fans can view feeds from cameras positioned around the track.
In-Car Cams: Fans can watch and listen-in on all the action from inside the vehicle and from pit road. 
Mosaic View: This camera allows fans an opportunity to view all streams at once.

RaceBuddy, also available at, gives fans a chance to connect with other racing enthusiasts through social networking sites via an online real-time chat.

Additionally, NASCAR .com is also launching TrackPass RaceView 360 for the NASCAR Sprint Cup series. TrackPass RaceView 360 is an enhanced version of TrackPass RaceView that lets fans follow their favorite driver through every turn and every pit stop. New features include enhanced virtual video options, advanced driver performance stats, improved DVR functionality, new pit performance tools and customizable layout. These new features further enhance RaceView's already deep race coverage and in-car audio that get fans closer to the race than ever before. 

NASCAR .com's successful flagship franchise NASCAR Fantasy Live! returns for the NASCAR Sprint Cup series with upgraded features and opportunities for deeper fan engagement including pit road data for the first time. NASCAR Fantasy Live! continues to be the first and only NASCAR fantasy game to offer live scoring during races.
"As the official site of NASCAR, NASCAR .com strives to provide the most interactive experience for fans throughout the entire racing season," said Justin Williams, senior director of business operations for NASCAR .com. "With more live coverage including RaceBuddy, RaceView 360 and Fantasy games, we are engaging the hard-core and casual racing enthusiasts alike."
"The NASCAR Nationwide series is coming off of one of its greatest seasons of all time," said John Martin, managing director of digital media for NASCAR. "Couple that with the excitement surrounding this series as we head into Daytona and we believe the interest in the NASCAR Nationwide series is at, or near an all-time high.  These digital enhancements will magnify our fans' passion for the sport while also providing more unique content to engage with on race day."
 From Turner Sports-PR

New & Improved In-Venue Broadcast Service Coming to NASCAR Tracks
With a new season of racing just days away, NASCAR and FanVision announced today a multi-year agreement that will enhance the at-track companion viewing experience for the sport's millions of fans.

FanVision will offer a wide array of broadcast content, provided by Emmy Award-Winning NASCAR Media Group, delivering the most extensive menu of features and services available. This next generation technology will be available at select NASCAR Sprint Cup series event weekends and will offer an experience unlike anything fans have ever seen before in a handheld device. The FanVision controller and service will replace the out-dated FanView device that has been available for rent or purchase at NASCAR Sprint Cup series tracks since 2006.
"Improving the fan experience at-track is a key component of our five year industry action plan," said Steve Phelps, senior vice president and chief marketing officer for NASCAR. "By upgrading to FanVision, we will be offering the fans who attend our races an enhanced live event experience that allows them to further engage in the sport. This will certainly not be the last upgrade we make at track but it's certainly a significant one that will have immediate impact on how the sport is consumed."
The FanVision controller represents the cutting edge in broadcast technology and is the ultimate race companion providing exclusive at-track handheld access to live broadcast feeds, eight onboard cameras, official timing, data, statistics, as well as the ability to follow specific drivers, instant replays and digital radio scanner. The high-quality, 4.3-inch screen on the FanVision controller provides an unrivaled event experience allowing users to catch every corner and every movement of NASCAR on razor-sharp clarity.
"We're thrilled to begin this partnership with NASCAR and NASCAR Media Group and provide fans a new dimension to their race-day experience," said Tasso Koken, COO, FanVision. "NASCAR is clearly a priority for us, as this partnership adds a critical piece to FanVision's expanding portfolio."
With the transition to the new FanVision controller, fans will no longer be able to rent, purchase or activate FanView devices. FanView device owners may be eligible for a credit towards the purchase of a new FanVision controller. To learn more, FanView device owners should visit FanVision or Racing Electonics haulers or kiosks at track during select NASCAR Sprint Cup series weekends, or visit to learn more.

The new FanVision controller offers a superior user experience over the Fanview device including: High-definition video, Larger screen (4.3 inches), More video channels, Improved, fan-friendly interface, Richer statistics.

FanVision, the global leader in fan-enhanced technology, was founded in 2003 and has been offering the FanVision controller and service at various sporting events including Formula One races around the world last season. FanVision has also delivered rich personal in-venue content for the past two seasons at 12 NFL stadiums and the University of Michigan home football games.
"We're excited about the potential this new controller has to improve the live-event experience, and we believe the time is now to make the upgrade," said Jay Abraham, COO of NASCAR Media Group. "Utilizing this new technology and FanVision's controller, attending a NASCAR race will never be the same."
The new FanVision controller will be available for purchase or rent at FanVision or Racing Electronics haulers or kiosks or online at This new technology will be available at select NASCAR Sprint Cup series event weekends beginning at Daytona International Speedway with the non-points Budweiser Shootout at Daytona on Feb 18 (FOX, 8pm ET) and the Daytona 500 on Feb 26 (FOX, 1pm ET) and ending with the season finale Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Nov. 18.


Martinsville Speedway Ticket Office Now Open on Weekends
Martinsville Speedway's ticket office will be open on weekends beginning this Saturday, Feb 18 and running until the Goody's Fast Relief 500 on April 2.

Starting this Saturday, the Speedway ticket office will be open from 9am to 3pm ET on Saturdays from 12pm to 4pm ET on Sundays.

The Martinsville Speedway ticket office is open daily, 9am to 5pm ET.
"We know a lot of people like to come out and go into the grandstands and pick their seats out and that can be hard to do during the week," said Martinsville Speedway president W. Clay Campbell. "With the extra hours on Saturdays, it will give anyone the chance to come out, walk around the grandstands and pick out the seats they want."
For Ticket Information... Martinsville Speedway

Bayne and the Woods Return to Daytona as Defending Daytona 500 Champions
Trevor Bayne and the Wood Brothers are back at Daytona International Speedway as the defending Daytona 500 champions, reflecting on the big win of a year ago, but, more importantly, focusing on this year's Great American Race.

Eddie Wood, co-owner of the No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford, said he spent some of his first day of Speedweeks 2012 thinking about the team's triumph last year, a victory that kicked off a strong year for both NASCAR and the Wood Brothers.

Read more from... Wood Brothers Racing

Sweet Ride at Daytona for Ross Chastain
The nation's oldest produce trade association will join forces with one of the youngest drivers in the field on February 24 as Florida native Ross Chastain makes his first start at the World Center of Speed when the NASCAR Camping World Truck series kicks off the 2012 racing season.

The National Watermelon Association will celebrate its 99th year of service adorning the hood of the SS Green Light Racing No. 08 Toyota and Chastain's Tundra will be hauling watermelons around the Daytona Speedway at nearly 190 miles per hour.

Read more from SS Green Racing

Rockingham to hold NCWTS & K&N Pro Series Tire Tests in March
In advance of NASCAR's return to the Rockingham Speedway, Goodyear will be holding tire tests for the NASCAR Camping World Truck series and K&N Pro series East on March 6-7 and the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour will be on site April 18th.

The grandstands will be open to fans free of charge on all three days.

Read more from Rockingham Speedway

Daytona International Speedway to add short track races in 2013
There will be no gap in the 2013 Speedweeks stock-car schedule. Beginning next year, Daytona International Speedway's "dark days," or the Monday and Tuesday before the Daytona 500, will be filled with a mega national event on a short track carved from the backstretch area fronting the Lund Grandstands.

Read more from...Daytona Beach News Journal

Bandit Returns to NASCAR with Crum at Daytona
The modest wood chipper company from mid-Michigan is returning to NASCAR with driver Jake Crum, opening the 2012 season in style with a new truck at the first Camping World Truck series race of the year - the NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on Feb 24. The race will mark Bandit's third consecutive year as a primary sponsor in a major NASCAR series, and it will mark Crum's third year competing in the Camping World Truck series.

Read more from... Bandit Chippers

Congratulations to Jamie & Alan Buzze
Congratulations to Jamie and Alan on the birth of their son, Tyler William Buzze, born Feb 3, 2012 at Carolina's Medical Center in Charlotte, NC. Tyler weighed 8 pounds, 12 ounces and was 21 3/4 inches long. Jamie Buzze is the Manager of Operations & Communications for Stacy Compton's Turn One Racing. Alan is a mechanic for Roush Fenway Racing on Greg Biffle's Cup car.

From Jayski's

Neuenberger in the #76 at Daytona
Donnie Neuenberger will start the 2012 season by competing in both the ARCA and NASCAR Nationwide series events at Daytona International Speedway. Donnie will be competing in the ARCA #40 Carter Racing Dodge on February 18th and in the Nationwide #76 Eagle Convenience Store Ford with Ray Hackett Racing on Feb 25th. 

Ray Hackett Racing was founded by Maryland businessman Ray Hackett. 2012 will mark the team's fifth consecutive year racing in NASCAR. Ray Hackett Racing has just completed work on a brand new race shop located in Salisbury, NC.

Returning Nationwide Daytona primary sponsor is Eagle Convenience Stores. Eagle Convenience Stores are an Alabama based convenience store chain located from Opelika to Talladega Superspeedway, mainly in the central Alabama area.

From DGN Racing

Relaxation Drink Maker BeBevCo Announces ARCA and NASCAR Sponsorships
Bebida Beverage Company a developer, manufacturer of relaxation and energy drinks announced Thursday their continued support of NASCAR and ARCA series driver Mike Harmon at Daytona Speedweeks.

BeBevCo's flagship brand relaxation drink, Koma Unwind, will join American Hero Racing, the team's major sponsor, in this week's entry of ARCA series race at the famed Daytona International Speedway in the Lucas Oil Slick Mist 200 at Daytona Feb 18, 2012, 4:30 pm ET on The SPEED Channel.

Read more from Yahoo-Finance

Richard Childress & Ricky Rudd elected to NMPA Hall of Fame
Team owner Richard Childress and Ricky Rudd, the driver who gave Childress his first NASCAR win have been elected to the National Motorsports Press Association's Hall of Fame. Each received more than the required 65 percent of the votes cast by the NMPA's members.

Read more from Fayobserver .com

Congratulations to Kelley Earnhardt Miller
JR Motorsports co-owner Kelley Earnhardt Miller gave birth to a baby boy Thursday afternoon.

Wyatt Wayne Miller was born at 1:43pm and weighed 8 pounds, 13 ounces and measured 19.5 inches, according to a post on the team co-owner's Facebook fan page. Mother and son are doing well.

Read more from Scene Daily

Robby Gordon to attempt making the Daytona 500
Robby Gordon will attempt to make the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway with sponsorship from MAPEI.

He ran 25 of last year's 36 events, a 16th in Daytona and 18th at Sonoma were his best finishes, and he DNF'd 14 times.  

Read more from Mike Mulhern

Scorpion Truck Bed Liners joins Front Row Motorsports
Truck bed liner, window film and protective coatings company Scorpion Protective Coatings, Inc. will enter the NASCAR arena for the first time, joining Front Row Motorsports as a multi-race partner in the team's 2012 Sprint Cup series campaign. Scorporian's program will include primary sponsorship of David Ragan's No. 34 Ford in two of NASCAR's most storied events, the season-opening Daytona 500 and the famed Brickyard 400. Scorpion will be an associate sponsor on the car for all other races in the 2012 Sprint Cup series season.

Scorpion will also be the official bed liner window film and protective coatings line of Front Row Motorsports and David Ragan. Company experts will also work with the team's operational managers to develop applications to improve and maximize the life and performance of the team equipment and vehicles throughout the season.

Read more from Front Row Motorsports PR

Ragan to run Pudding Pak scheme in Shootout
David Ragan will be behind the wheel of the #34 MHP Power Pak Pudding car this Saturday night when the 2012 NASCAR racing series kicks off with the Budweiser Shootout at Daytona International Speedway.

Ragan qualified for the Shootout by winning the Coke Zero 400 at the Daytona track last July. He is driving for the Front Row Motorsports team this year.

Read more from MHP

Thursday, February 16, 2012
Zest Announces a Race Sponsorship with Kenseth and Roush Fenway
Roush Fenway Racing is proud to announce a new primary sponsorship for the 2003 Cup series champion Matt Kenseth and his No 17 Sprint Cup team on behalf of the Zest brand of bar soap and body wash. Zest will serve as the primary sponsor for four races during the 2012 Sprint Cup series season for Kenseth starting with Las Vegas in March (Mar 11). The remaining three races of the sponsorship are slated for Daytona (July 7), Kansas (Oct 21), and Martinsville (Oct 28).
"NASCAR has some of the best fans when it comes to brand loyalty, so we're looking forward to welcoming Zest to our sport, and thrilled to have them as part of our Roush Fenway team," said Kenseth, driver of the No. 17 Zest Ford.
"Partnering with the No. 17 Ford of Matt Kenseth and the Roush Fenway team is a natural fit for Zest," said Jim Daniels, President and CEO of High Ridge Brands, the owners of Zest bar soap and body wash. "Matt and the Roush Fenway team are perennial winners with a loyal following who respect their ability to deliver high energy performances on the track and a first class, clean image off the track. We look forward to another successful year for Zest, Roush Fenway, and of course, Matt and his No. 17 Zest Ford."
The premier of the No. 17 Zest Ford will take place on Mar 11, 2012 for the Kobalt Tools 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Kenseth boasts two Sprint Cup wins at the 1.5-mile oval at Las Vegas. The Kobalt Tools 400 will be broadcast on FOX Sunday, March 11th with television coverage beginning at 2:30pm ET and radio coverage provided by the Performance Racing Network.

From Roush Fenway Racing-PR

Scott Zipadelli to be crew chief for RAB at Daytona
RAB Racing with Brack Maggard announced Thursday, that Scott Zipadelli, crew chief of the team's Nationwide series effort, will call the shots for the team as they attempt to make their Sprint Cup series debut in the 54th annual Daytona 500 on Feb 26.

Working alongside Zipadelli will be Brandon Thomas, who comes to RAB Racing from the now-defunct Red Bull Racing Team. Thomas 37, has been overseeing construction and preparation of the car, and will be atop the pit box at Daytona International Speedway as race engineer.

Read more from ... NASCAR .com

Nemechek gets sponsor for Daytona 500
Last year we teamed with NEMCO Motorsports #87 and Joe Nemechek at the Nationwide Bristol races. AM FM-ENERGY has worked a deal with front row Joe in the Sprint Cup series. Look for us on his #87 car in the twin qualifier at Daytona and the 500. Joe runs a top notch organization at NEMCO Motorsports and we look forward to working with him in the coming future.

Read more from ... AM FM ENERGY

Bill Elliott to drive the #97 Toyota for NEMCO Motorsports in Daytona 500
NEMCO Motorsports announced today that Bill Elliott, past Sprint Cup Champion and Daytona 500 winner, will pilot the #97 Toyota for the Daytona 500 to be held at the Daytona International Speedway on Sunday, Feb 26, 2012.

This synergy will bring Front Row Joe, Joe Nemechek and Million Dollar Bill, Bill Elliott together as a powerful pair to kick off the 2012 NASCAR season at the 54th running of the Daytona 500.

Read more from ... NEMCO Motorsports

FAS Lane Racing heads to Daytona with Terry Labonte & C&J Energy Services
Just as they did to begin the NASCAR Sprint Cup series season last year, FAS Lane Racing is proud to announce they are heading to Daytona for the 2012 season opening race with Terry Labonte. The two time NASCAR Sprint Cup series champion will pilot the No. 31 Ford for the 54th running of the Daytona 500. In addition to the team and driver reunion, FAS Lane Racing welcomes back C&J Energy Services as the Primary Sponsor for the annual season opener at the Daytona International Speedway.

Read more from ... Winning with Integrity for FAS Lane Racing

Chip Bolin to Fill-in for Bob Osborne at Budweiser Shootout
Chip Bolin will serve as crew chief this weekend at Daytona International Speedway on the No. 99 Fastenal Ford with Carl Edwards due to the passing of Bob Osborne's father.

Osborne will return to Daytona next week to lead Edwards and the team in the Gatorade Duels and the Daytona 500. Bolin is currently the head engineer for Rousch Fenway Racing and previously served as Matt Kenseth's Sprint Cup crew chief.

From Roush Fenway Racing

AJ Allmendinger and Walldinger Racing create Karting Scholarship
As the child of two parents who went to work everyday (and sometimes nights, as mom is a nurse...) AJ Allmendinger didn't come from the kind of background that provided him an unlimited budget to go racing. Fortunately, significant parental sacrifices, Allmendinger's natural talent and desire, and some well-timed help from racing scholarships helped him race his way to the pinnacle of the sport.

Allmendinger is set to make his debut for Penske Racing this Saturday in the No. 22 Shell-Penzoil Dodge in the non-points Budweiser Shootout at the Daytona International Speedway.

Having seen first hand the impact that some outside help can have on a racer's career, Allmendinger is very pleased to announce a new program that will see a deserving young karter receive a scholarship to race in the 2012 World Karting Association championship starting March 23-25 at Carolina Motorsports Park in Kershaw, SC. The scholarship winner will also be set to compete in the Rotax Grand Nationals in August and SKUSA SuperNationals in November.

While Allmendinger was lucky enough to have a winning personality to go with his tremendous on-track skill set, he knows that being the full package is key to getting attention and earning the sponsorship and support needed to move up. To that end, the scholarship prize winner will also receive media and management training from Walldinger Racing, Allmendinger's management firm. 

Allmendinger's scholarships included prizes from the Skip Barber Racing School (where he finished second in the 2001 National Championship and won the 2002 Barber Dodge Pro series Championship) as well as being selected to compete by the TEAM USA Scholarship, run by long time broadcaster and motorsports benefactor Jeremy Shaw.
"I was very lucky, so many different times through my career, to get the support that I needed to keep racing and keep moving up," said Allmendinger, who opened the 2012 season with a win in the 50th Anniversary Rolex 24 at Daytona for Michael Shank Racing. "So I feel very fortunate to be in a position to try to help someone else who is trying to do the same thing. I've had really great partners through my career and I think you can expect some exciting announcements as we go forward with this program. I am really looking forward to this being the start of something good for some young racer out there."
Beginning Feb 15, 2012, serious applicants ages 13-16 are asked to send their CV, racing credentials, photo and short summary of their racing goals to:

Deadline for entry is March 10, 2012.

From Walldinger Racing, Inc-PR

RCR Partners with K&N Engineering for ECR Engines Program
Richard Childress Racing and K&N Engineering, Inc., the inventor and leading innovator of reusable cotton gauze filter technology for automotive applications, have reached agreement on a multi-year partnership for ECR Engines' NASCAR program.

The technical partnership provides ECR Engines with K&N Engineering air and oil filters as well as research and development support. K&N Engineering will receive marketing rights to Richard Childress Racing's drivers, cars and teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series, Nationwide series and Camping World Truck series. All RCR race cars will be adorned with the K&N decal through the NASCAR Contingency Sponsor program as well as having the K&N logo under the hood of every car.
"K&N is thrilled to be partnering with Richard Childress Racing and ECR Engines," said Steve Williams, vice president for K&N Engineering. "RCR has been so successful in NASCAR and has such a great group of drivers in all three major series. We are looking forward to providing K&N high flow air filters and oil filters as well as additional engineering support to assist ECR Engines."
RCR has earned 14 major stock car racing championships, including six NASCAR Cup series titles (1986-87, 1990-91, 1993-94) with the legendary Dale Earnhardt. In 2011, the grandsons of RCR president and CEO Richard Childress earned championships in the NASCAR Camping World Truck series (Austin Dillon) and the ARCA series presented by Menards (Ty Dillon). ECR Engines earned 101 victories in the past two racing seasons (2010-2011). Victories came in all three of NASCAR main touring series, including the Daytona 500 (2010) and Brickyard 400 (2010-2011). ECR Engines also took checkered flags in the Grand-Am series Daytona Prototype division, SCCA Trans-Am series, and multiple dirt track series.
"The potential of any engine relies on its air and oil filtering systems and K&N Engineering provides the performance and reliability we demand at ECR Engines," said Richie Gilmore, chief operating of ECR Engines. "The relationship between the RCR, ECR Engines and K&N Engineering has started off great and we look forward to only strengthening our partnership as the season continues."
From Richard Childress Racing/Earnhardt-Childress Engines-PR

McDowell to Drive Phil Parson Racing's No 98 Ford in 2012
Fifth-year NASCAR Sprint Cup series driver Michael McDowell will pilot the No. 98 Ford for Phil Parsons Racing (PPR) for the entire 2012 Sprint Cup season, it was announced today by PPR's Phil Parsons and new partner Mike Curb.

Parsons, the former NASCAR driver and current television commentator on SPEED, merged the assets of his PPR team with Whitney Motorsports during the offseason in an effort to boister his 2012 Sprint Cup effort.

Curb, owner of Curb Records who also has long and successful history of race team ownership in the NASCAR and open-wheel ranks, among others, becomes a partner in the PPR effort for 2012.
"Combining our efforts with Whitney Motorsports with the support of Mike Curb and having Michael McDowell behind the wheel of the No. 98 Ford means we'll open the season at Daytona better prepared than ever before," Parsons said. "We feel the timing couldn't be better for us to build is program into a proper Sprint Cup series effort."
The No. 98 Ford will run with Roush Yates Racing power under its hood. The team will be headed by veteran crew chief Gene Nead, who has worked with McDowell in previous Sprint Cup and NASCAR Nationwide series efforts at PPR and Michael Waltrip Racing.
"I'm particularly excited about this program for a number of reasons," Curb said. "The players who have come together to form this latest effort shows that it's built to succeed, and I'm glad to be a part of it. Michael is a tremendous driving talent and is a wonderful young man. He has a special interest in our Christian music operation at Curb Records and building partnership opportunities involving that segment of our business. It's truly exciting."
McDowell and Curb have already tasted success on the racetrack this season as the 28-year-old driver scored a podium finish in last month's 50th Rolex 24 at Daytona co-driving a Curb Records-sponsored Michael Shank Racing Ford. A second Curb Records-sponsored Michael Shank Racing Ford won the race overall.
"This is the opportunity I've been lookinf for - to work with various Christian music outlets, Michael Curb and Curb Records, and our other partnerships that are taking shape," said McDowell, who has 84 Sprint Cup starts to his credit. "This opportunity will allow me to expand my brand and put me in a position to work with the types of companies I've been wanting to work with for a long time. On the racetrack, I'm excited about the chance to have my best NASCAR season ever."
Specific partnership announcements involving the No. 98 Ford for PPR will be made in the coming days.

From True Speed Communications for Phil Parsons Racing-PR

Wednesday, February 15, 2012
Ford Expands Partnership at Bristol with Entitlement of Nationwide Race
Ford Motor Company today announced the expansion of the automaker's partnership at Bristol Motor Speedway with the sponsorship of the venue's Nationwide series race.

The Ford EcoBoost 300 takes place March 17 at the World's Fastest Half-Mile, adding to Ford's involvement at BMS, which also includes sponsorship of Ford Fan Friday qualifying and the Ford Thunder Valley Nationals at Bristol Dragway. Ford also is the official vehicle of BMS.

Read more from Bristol Motor Speedway-PR

Dale Earnhardt Candlelight Tribute
Dale Earnhardt, Inc. will be holding the annual "Candlelight Remembrance of Dale Earnhardt" on Saturday, February 18, 2012.

The Showroom will be open to the public and will be illuminated with candles. Commemorative decals and prayer cards will be distributed to all in attendance. A memorial guest book will be available throughout the day, for those who would like to share their memories of Dale.

Fans are invited to attend from 6pm until 9pm ET, at Dale Earnhardt Inc. on Highway 3, in Mooresville, NC.

Those unable to attend are encouraged to light a candle at home that evening in remembrance of Dale Earnhardt's remarkable spirit and life, and all fans of Dale Earnhardt are asked to help "Continue The Legend" through your support of The Dale Earnhardt Foundation and Dale's passions: Children, Education, and Environmental/Wildlife Conservation.

From Dale Earnhardt, Inc.

DeLana Harvick starts a new Baby Harvick Blog
DeLana Harvick announced on Twitter today her new Baby Harvick Blog...and they're having a Baby Boy Harvick!

Read more from... DeLana's Blog

Rick Ware Racing and Timmy Hill go for Back to Back Rookie of the Year Titles
Rick Ware Racing and Poynt .com (free mobile app) have finalized a deal to run Timmy Hill for the 2012 Sprint Cup Rookie of the Year.
"I am very excited to have our sponsor and driver make a move up to the Sprint Cup series" says owner Rick Ware.
RWR will run the full Sprint Cup schedule with sponsor Poynt on board. Mike Wallace will drive the 54th annual Daytona 500. Timmy Hill, the 2011 NASCAR Nationwide Rookie of the Year, will be at Daytona in his Poynt Nationwide Ford. Timmy will start driving the #37 full time at Fontana or Texas.

RWR has joined forces with Larry Gunselman's Max Q Motorsports #37 for the full season. The Sprint Cup operation will run out of RWR's new 24,000 sq. ft. facility across the street from RWR's Nationwide and Rolex programs.

Timmy's crew chief will be veteran Bill Henderson. Ken Glen formerly of KHI will serve as Competition Director and Larry Gunselman will be General Manager of the #37 Ford.

From Rick Ware Racing-PR

Ray Evernham returns to ESPN as NASCAR Analyst
Three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion crew chief Ray Evernham is returning to ESPN as a NASCAR analyst for the 2012 season.

Evernham will join ESPN's team at Daytona Speedweeks and will be part of NASCAR Countdown before the NASCAR Nationwide series race that airs on ESPN on Saturday, Feb 25, at noon ET. He also will appear on NASCAR Now and SportsCenter from Daytona as ESPN's multimedia platforms surround the opening of the NASCAR season.

Evernham, who won three championships and 47 races as crew chief for Jeff Gordon at Hendrick Motorsports will be an analyst on NASCAR Countdown for many of the 17 NASCAR Sprint Cup races that will appear on ESPN networks in the second half of the season. In addition to his work on NASCAR Now and SportsCenter, he will call several NASCAR Nationwide series races from the booth.

Evernham was an analyst for ESPN from 2008-2010 but left prior to the 2011 season when he took a consulting position with Hendrick Companies, a management company that oversees strategic initiatives for chairman Rick Hendrick, who also owns Hendrick Motorsports.
"I chose to take a year off from ESPN out of respect for ESPN and Hendrick Motorsports," said Evernham. "I didn't want to create any perceived conflict of interest while I got my bearings at Hendrick and didn't want to cause distraction to either company."
"Now that I'm settled at Hendrick Performance, I don't have any involvement on the racing side of the operations and it frees me from any conflict with NASCAR teams," he said. "Mr. Hendrick and I have worked out an agreement that allows me to return to the ESPN team."
Evernham has a history with ESPN dating back to 2000, when he appeared as an analyst on ESPN and ABC's coverage of the IROC series and some NASCAR races. In 2007, he was a guest analyst on NASCAR Countdown for several NASCAR Nationwide series telecasts and was featured in Race Wizard with Ray Evernham, a program that aired on ESPN2.
"I'm glad to be coming back to ESPN," Evernham said. "I really enjoy the team camaraderie at ESPN and I'm very much at home with this group from my previous three years," he said. "Stock car racing is my passion and I'm looking forward to being back involved. I'm excited about the momentum NASCAR has going into the season."
Evernham, who raced Modifieds in his native New Jersey, rose to prominence in NASCAR after hanging up his helmet and becoming a crew chief. After his championships with Gordon and Hendrick in the 1990's he started his own team to coincide with Dodge's return to the top level of NASCAR racing in 2001. He sold the race team in 2007.

With the return of Evernham, ESPN will again have five former NASCAR champions as analysts, including 1989 NASCAR Sprint Cup driving champion Rusty Wallace, 1999 champion Dale Jarrett and two-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion crew chiefs Tim Brewer and Andy Petree.
"We welcome Ray back to the team and look forward to enhancing our coverage of NASCAR with the knowledge and expertise he brings to the table," said Rich Feinberg, ESPN vice president, motorsports, production. "He's a solid professional and a well-respected voice in the sport."
From...ESPN Communications-PR

Richmond International Race offers Pre-Race Pit Passes
Richmond International Raceway is bringing you closer to the action than ever before with Friday Pre-Race Pit Passes for the upcoming Spring NASCAR Weekend. You can watch NASCAR pole qualifying and practice from the perspective of a NASCAR crew member and see the stock cars from just a few feet away as they rumble down pit road, giving you an unforgettable experience of the sights and sounds that only NASCAR can produce.

Read more from...RIR-PR

NASCAR post Media Schedule
The 2012 Sprint Cup series season officially kicks off Thursday at Daytona International Speedway with Media Day. There are more than 40 drivers scheduled to address the media and NASCAR .com will stream the interviews live beginning at 8am ET. 

For an hour-by-hour breakdown of scheduled appearances... NASCAR .com 

Roush Fenway Racing Refines Race Fan Experience with Google+
In an effort to completely redefine fan engagement within the sport of auto racing, Roush Fenway Racing has joined Google+ to create a richer, more engaged experience for its fans. With the  help of the digital agency, CrushIQ, Roush Fenway is launching both a Google+ brand page and individual profiles for its racecar drivers to provide fans unprecendented ways to engage with personalities in the sport of auto racing. This will offer fans unmatched behind-the-scenes access to team activities beyond just race days.
"There is so much that goes into being a successful race team," says John Bauersfield, vice president of business development for Rousch Fenway Racing. "And now, in this digital age, we have the ability to share directly with our fans all of the hard work and team dedication that you never get a chance to see outside the oval."
"Fans are demanding a greater level of access and engagement from brands and now we have the unprecedented opportunity to give it to them using Google+ and its unique features, like live Hangouts," states Tim Moor, CEO of CrushIQ. "The Google+ platform is powerful for sharing digital content and we are seeing it deliver a new level of interaction for brands and companies to effectively engage with fans, consumers and influencers," continued Moore.
By following +Roush Fenway Racing as well as the individual drivers' profiles on Google +, fans will have access to live team updates, behind the scenes information, team meetings, team practices, the garage, team travel, extracurricular activities and race preparations as well as live face-to-face Google+ Hangouts with drivers and team members.

Roush Fenway Racing is committing the entire organization to the success of this new fan engagement. Fans are encouraged to circle their favorite Roush Fenway driver on Google+ at: +Carl Edwards, +Greg Biffle, +Matt Kenseth, +Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and +Trevor Bayne by adding +Roush Fenway Racing to their circles.

This new fan engagement kicks off with a multi-driver Hangout scheduled Wednesday, Feb 22 at 7pm ET live from Daytona Beach, FL. During this Hangout, the drivers will answer questions directly from their fans through Google+. Be sure to check out the Roush Fenway Racing page for more details in the coming days. Additional highlights will include a pre-Daytona 500 Saturday night fan Hangout 2011 D500 winner Trevor Bayne prior to him defending his title at the famed event, a race-day hangout with team owner Jack Roush on Sunday, Feb 26 and a Daytona 500 race-recap on Monday, Feb 17 with two-time NASCAR Champion Greg Biffle.

Roush Fenway Racing is the winningest team in NASCAR history, fielding multiple teams in the Sprint Cup and Nationwide series with championship drivers Carl Edwards, Matt Kenseth, Greg Biffle, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Trevor Bayne. Celebrating 25 winning years in 2012, Roush Fenway is the leader in NASCAR marketing solutions, pioneering its exclusive Roush Fenway OnTrack sponsorship measurement services, motorsport's first team-focused TV shows and its award-winning social marketing channel 

From Roush Fenway Racing-PR

Roush Fenway Looks to Carry Momentum Into 2012 Season
Coming off one of the strongest outings in the organization's '25 Winning Years,' Roush Fenway Racing will look to build on the performance that saw the team place five different drivers in victory lane in 2012, while collecting 17 wins and a team-record 20 poles.

Read more from ... Roush Fenway Racing

Ryan and Krissie Newman scheduled to visit Best Friends Animal Society
Ryan and Krissie Newman will be stopping by Best Friends Animal Society's sanctuary in Kanab, UT on Thursday, March 8th before heading to Las Vegas for the race weekend. The Newman's will be touring the facility located on 3,800 acres, spending time with the caregivers and holding a public autograph session for the surrounding community.

Best Friends Animal Society is located in Angel Canyon and home to about 1,700 dogs, cats, and other animals that come from shelters and rescue groups around the country for special care.

Most of the animals that find their way to Best Friends have special physical or behavioral needs. Expert staff of veterinarians, trainers and caregivers offers the help they require and most are ready to go to good homes after just a few weeks of care.

Best Friends branches out to humane groups and communities to set up spay/neuter clinics, shelter foster and adoption programs. Their reach goes across the world to help natural disaster areas, wartime situations and animal hoarding or failed sheltering situations.

Best Friends is also known for the rehabilitation of dogs taken from Michael Vick. The documentation of their progress was shown in episodes of "Dog Town," a series which aired on the National Geographic Channel.
"When Ryan and I were approached about our visit, I didn't hesitate to say yes," said Krissie Newman. "I've heard good things about Best Friends in the past and really looking forward to see the facility and all the animals they have there. They have so much land and some of their educational programs are something I am interested in learning more about and hopefully adopt some of the pieces for our educational programs at Rescue Ranch in the future. I'm looking forward to it."
 The day will be captured by NASCAR Media Group for a future piece that will air on NASCAR Race Day on SPEED.

From The Ryan Newman Foundation-PR

JR Motorsports annouces sponsorship with Ingersoll Rand
JR Motorsports has announced a strategic sponsorship with Ingersoll Rand that  features a one-race primary sponsorship of the No. 88 Chevrolet driven by Cole Whitt in the NASCAR Nationwide series, along with full-season associate sponsor placement.

Ingersoll Rand will serve as primary sponsor on Whitt's No. 88 Chevrolet during the May 26 race weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Whitt, a 20-year-old from Alpine, CA is in his first season at JR Motorsports and joins Danica Patrick in competing for a Nationwide series championship in 2012.

Read more from ... Sirius Speedway and JR Motorsports-PR

Teams Testing at Nashville
Richard Childress Racing rented Nashville Superspeedway for a two-day test that kicked off Monday to ascertain the development of its downforce program from last season. 

With a total of five teams, two of its three Sprint Cup entries and three Nationwide series squads the organization will test new setup ideas and work on electronic fuel injection, a new quirk for NASCAR teams this season.

All the simulation that has been completed at the race shop throughout the off season will offer the teams a baseline to build their notebooks for the rest of the year. But this test session offers a chance to see what works when it matters most, on the racetrack, before the green flag drops on the 2012 season in just a matter of days.

Read more from... Fox Sports

Eleven years since pole winner won Daytona 500
The first two spots in the Daytona 500 will be determined on Sunday as a 10th different driver attempts to take the season-opening Coors Light Pole Award. Hendrick Motorsports has won three of the last four poles. The pole-winner appears to be due for a victory in The Great American Race. The record for seasons between pole-sitters winning the Daytona 500 is 12 from Cale Yarborough in 1968 to Buddy Baker in 1980 and Bill Elliott in 1987 to Jeff Gordon in 1999. Dale Jarrett is the last pole-sitter to win the 500 in 2000. Danica Patrick will attempt to become the fourth rookie to win the Daytona 500 pole, following Loy Allen (1994), Mike Skinner (1997), and Jimmie Johnson (2002). If she does so, she'll also become the first woman to win a pole in NASCAR's top series. A female driver has not competed in the Daytona 500 since 1980. Janet Guthrie finished 11th to better her best previous finish of 12th in 1977.


Reutimann's Daytona ride is with BK
David Reutimann will drive the No. 93 Toyota for BK Racing in the Daytona 500.

Todd Anderson, the former car chief at TRG, will serve as crew chief for the team. Travis Kvapil will take over the driving duties in the No. 93 Toyota at Phoenix for the March 4 Sprint Cup race.

Reutimann, 41, most recently signed on to drive for Tommy Baldwin Racing last month. He will race the No. 10 Chevrolet in the races not piloted by Danica Patrick. Reutimann spent the past five seasons with Michael Waltrip Racing. He has posted two wins in 171 career Cup starts - MWR's only victories to date.

Read more from ... FOX Sports

Tony Stewart wins RACER of the Year presented by Mobil 1
From self-styled zero to hero in 10 races, Tony Stewart's dramatic, championship-clinching performance in the 2011 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup might go down in history as one of motorsport's greatest comebacks. It's a performance that earned him not one, but two reader-voted awards in the 17th annual RACER of the Year presented by Mobil 1 - overall RACER of the Year and Oval Racer of the Year.

Read more from... Racer

ESPN's Dr. Jerry Punch at peace with Kurt Busch after Homestead incident
Nearly an entire offseason has passed since Kurt Busch made headlines for his profanity-laced tirade toward ESPN personnel at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

You would assume hard feelings might linger on the part of ESPN pit reporter Dr. Jerry Punch.

You'd be wrong.
"Kurt and I, we talked that next week and he sent me a lengthy email talking about how ashamed and embarrassed he was, and he knows that I've tried to be helpful, he knows he messed up. ...He sent me this email and said he wanted my cell phone," Punch said in a phone interview Monday. "I called him the night before Thanksgiving and we talked for a little while, and we went over a lot of the things, and we had some very frank conversation. 
I said, 'Look, you've apologized, I've accepted your apology, now let's move on. I wish you nothing but success on and off the race track next year.'"

Read more from...Scene Daily

2012 Budweiser Shootout Race Fast Facts
The start to the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup series season is only days away with the 34th running of the Budweiser Shootout at Daytona on Saturday, February 18. Dating back to the first event in 1979, the Budweiser Shootout has featured some of the sport's greatest drivers and provided a number of thrilling finishes.

Historical Facts & Information
The very first Budweiser Shootout at Daytona took place on Feb 11, 1979, and was a 20-lap race with no scheduled breaks.

Nine drivers participated in the inaugural event and Buddy Baker scored the win, edging out Darrell Waltrip by one car length to take the checkered flag.

Utilizing the format established in 2009, the Budweiser Shootout is currently a 75-lap race that features a 10-minute break after the first 15 laps.

Kurt Busch is the defending Budweiser Shootout champion. Busch scored the win by making a last-lap pass on the dueling duo of Ryan Newman and Denny Hamlin. While Busch went to the outside to make his move, Hamlin dropped below Newman in an effort to go for the win. After a review of the final lap, NASCAR determined Hamlin went below the yellow line in trying to pass Newman, which was a violation of the rulebook.

Busch was then scored as the race winner, becoming the 19th different driver to score a victory in the Budweiser Shootout.

The margin of victory in last year's race was a mere 0.058 seconds, setting a new record for the closest finish in the history of the Budweiser Shootout.

By the Numbers
1 - Dodge scored its first on only win the Budweiser Shootout in 2011.

5 - Five drivers have earned Budweiser Shootout victories after leading only the final lap of the race. Dale Earnhardt was the first to steal the win with a last-lap pass in 1980. Neil Bonnett managed the same feat two years in a row in 1983 and 1984. Rusty Wallace (1998), Dale Jarrett (2004) and most recently Kevin Harvick (2009) also earned Budweiser Shootout wins by leading only the checkered flag lap.

14 - In 2009, a total of 14 different drivers led a lap in the Budweiser Shootout, setting an event record for most different leaders in a single race.

19 - The manufacturer with the most Budweiser Shootout wins is Chevrolet with a whopping 19 trips to Victory Lane.

28 - The record for the number of lead changes during the race is 28, set in last year's event.

47 - En route to his 2008 Budweiser Shootout win, Dale Earnhardt Jr. led seven times for a total 47 laps, setting the record for most laps led in a single race.

88 - The No. 88 entry has gone to Victory Lane five times with three different drivers in the Budweiser Shootout. Bobby Allison first won in the No. 88 entry in 1982. Dale Jarrett picked up victories in 1996, 2000 and 2004 and most recently, Dale Earnhardt Jr. drove the No. 88 car to Victory Lane in the event in 2008. The only other car number that's earned as many wins is the No. 3 entry Dale Earnhardt drove to Victory Lane five times in the Budweiser Shootout (1986, 1988, 1991, 1993 and 1995).

From Elevation Group of Companies for Budweiser Racing - PR

Said expects to run Nationwide road course races
Said: Hopefully, this year, I think I have the road races put together. I'm working on a lot of deals for the road races. I'm sure I'll do that in NASCAR this year.
FS: By the road races, you mean the two in Sprint Cup and the three in Nationwide?
Said: I'll probably only do two in Nationwide, or skip the Cup race (Sonoma). I haven't decided yet because Road America and Sonoma are on the same weekend. If I do the Cup race, I've got to commit to that. If I don't do it this year, then I'll go to Road America and do all three races since Grand-Am's there too.

Read more interview with The Frontstretch

Cobb plans full season run in trucks
Jennifer Jo Cobb plans to return to the NASCAR Camping World Truck series full-time in 2012 in the #10 Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing truck. She will be using both Ford and Ram engines dependent upon event. Steve Kuykendall returns as crew chief. Cobb will also run select Nationwide races in the #13 JJCR Dodge; crew chief TBA. 

From Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing-PR

JD Motorsports signs G&K Services for Daytona, Phoenix and other races
JD Motorsports will have a familiar look on their car for the season opener at Daytona with G&K Services returning to the fold for the 2012 season.

Mike Wallace will open the NASCAR Nationwide series driving the 01 G&K Services Chevrolet at Daytona International Speedway. The following week, G&K Services will return as the primary sponsor and will do so for other races throughout the year. For races they are not a primary partner, they will be an associate throughout the season.

Also on board for Daytona will be country gold recording artist Chris Cagle. The singer has earned two No. 1 hits, seven top-ten and twelve charted songs. His sixth album is titled "Got My Country On" produced and released by Bigger Picture Group.

G&K Services is returning to JD Motorsports for the third season. What started out as being involved in a handful of races in 2010 turned into a tripled effort in 2011.

From JD Motorsports-PR

Canada's Fitzpatrick is coming to NASCAR
For the pasts three seasons Canada's JR Fitzpatrick has been knocking on the door of NASCAR's top three series looking for a full-time job.

Not it appears someone has opened one of those doors for the 23-yea-old from Cambridge, Ont.

Fitzpatrick is expected to announce this week he has a full season deal to race in NASCAR Camping World Truck series in the No. 60 for the Stacey Compton-owned Turn One Racing team.

The final terms of the contract are still being locked down but a source close to the talks said Tuesday there are just some minor points to be worked out before Fitzpatrick signs on the dotted line.

The No. 60 Chevrolet squad was home last year to rising star Cole Whitt, who will campaign this season in the No. 88 JR Motorsports Chevrolet.

The proposed contract also has a provision for Fitzpatrick to run at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup race - at Watkins Glen - in a Chevrolet prepared by Turn One Racing.

Fitzpatrick, who became the youngest ever Canadian national stock car racing champion when he won the CASCAR Super series title in 2008 at 18, is also expected to compete in the NASCAR Canadian Tire series this season in the No. 84 Fitzpatrick Motorsports Chevrolet.

Read more from Toronto Sun

Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Why Front Row Motorsports can win Daytona
As Front Row Motorsports makes its final preparations for Daytona 500 activities, drivers David Gilliland and David Ragan head to the track knowing that they have more than a realistic chance of winning any event in the coming weeks. Gilliland, who raced with the team last season, finished third in last year's Daytona 500. Front Row Motorsports newcomer Ragan had a penalty that spoiled his chances of winning last year's Daytona 500 while leading in the final laps, but was met with sweet redemption in his return to Daytona in July by winning the famed 400-mile summer classic.

As the team has made continued improvements during the off-season, including hiring Pat Tryson, moving Jay Guy to work with David Ragan and adding two additional sponsors in Maximum Human Performance (MHP) and ModSpace, the team is stronger than ever to win at tracks where it has been in contention in the past. This has Ragan more than optimistic heading into Saturday night's Bud Shootout.

Read more from...Front Row Motorsports-PR

Points swap gives Mark Martin Daytona 500 start
More points swapping and acquisition between race teams has landed veteran Mark Martin with a guaranteed starting position in this year's Daytona 500.

Michael Waltrip Racing has worked out an agreement to transfer points from the FASLane Racing team to the #55 Toyota that Martin will pilot in 25 races this season.

FASLane wound up inside the Top-35 of owner points last year and thus was guaranteed a starting spot in the first five events of the new year including the season-opening Daytona 500.

While Waltrip will drive the #55 entry in Saturday night's Budweiser Shootout, Martin will now have to worry about qualifying for the Daytona 500 through time trials or the Gatorade Duel qualifying races.

FASLane is still expected to field a car this Sprint Cup series season and veterans Terry Labonte and Ken Schrader remain part of the roster. Labonte brings a past champion's provisional with him that would guarantee a Daytona 500 start for the team if he is tabbed to drive in the season opener. 

From CBS Sports

NASCAR This week on ESPN
With the NASCAR season only days away, ESPNEWS will air a three-hour special from NASCAR Media Day at the Daytona 500 on Thursday, Feb 1, at 12 noon ET. Defending NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Tony Stewart, Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon and Daytona 500 rookie Danica Patrick are among those scheduled to appear during the program. The telecast will be co-hosted by Mike Massaro and Nicole Briscoe with analyst Ricky Craven.

ESPN's daily NASCAR news and information program NASCAR NOW returns for its sixth season this week and airs Monday through Friday at 3pm ET. The program also can be seen on computers smartphones and tablets with WatchESPN. A one-hour edition of the program will air on Sunday, Feb 19, at 12noon/ET with a review of the previous night's Bud Shootout from Daytona Interntional Speedway and a look ahead to that day's pole qualifying for the Daytona 500. Mike Massaro hosts the program this week from ESPN's studios with Ricky Craven. Nicole Briscoe will report from Daytona starting Thursday.

Fifteen years ago, Jeff Gordon at age 25, became the youngest driver ever to win the Daytona 500. With the NASCAR season kickoff coming soon, ESPN Classic will recognize Gordon's accomplishment with an airing of the record-setting 1997 Daytona 500 at 5:30pm/ET on Thursday, Feb 16. The race will be followed at 7:30 pm/ET by an airing of SportsCentury: Jeff Gordon.

From ESPN/Jayski's

Venturini Motorsports Bringing Five to Daytona Opener
Mark Thompson will be making his eleventh career start in the Lucas Oil Slick Mist 300 at the Daytona International Speedway - eleven more than his other four Venturini teammates combined.

Much like the iconic race track itself, Venturini Motorsports will maintain a focus on the future of the ARCA Racing series during the season-opening event Feb 18 while still remaining grounded by its roots.

Thompson represents a wealth of experience, while Ryan Reed, Brennan Poole, Paulie Harraka and Nelson Canache Jr. provide a new and fresh approach. 

Read more from ... Venturini Motorsports-PR

Empire Racing teams up with United Way Military Program
Empire Racing announced their continuing support of the United Way for the 2012 season. Heading into the ARCA Racing series presented by Menards Daytona Lucas Oil 200, they will be running the United Way Military Family Assistance Project Text "SALUTE" to 50555.

The program is aimed to benefit The Family Assistance Project which supports programs that serve returning Military, Reservist and National Guard personnel that were active in Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom/New Dawn and their families.

For more information on the Text SALUTE project visit...United Way

From Empire Racing - PR

Cunningham Motorsports will help Bowman attempt Three for Three
The Lucas Oil Slick Mist 200 at Daytona International Speedway will be the first racing venture for the combination of Alex Bowman and Cunningham Motorsports. Not only is the first race of the 2012 season, the ARCA Racing series' "Superbowl," but this race will also mark Bowman taking another stab at the ARCA history books. In his first two starts last season, he did what no other racer has previously accomplished, by winning races at Madison International Speedway and Kansas Speedway.

Read more from ... Cunningham Motorsports - PR

TSN to carry all NASCAR races
Canada's TSN (The Sports Network) announced Monday that every single NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide series race, starting with the Daytona 500 a week from next Sunday (Feb 26), will be televised this year on either TSN or TSN2. The first race to hit the airwaves, the Budweiser Shootout, will be televised this coming Saturday night at 8pm/ET on TSN2. The two qualifying races that set the field for the 500, called the Gatorade Duel at Daytona, will go to air a week from Thursday (Feb 23) at 2 in the afternoon.

Read more from...Toronto Star

Larry McReynolds and Slick50 partnership
The Slick50 brand has been protecting engines for over 34 years, just as long as legendary NASCAR crew chief and FOX Sports broadcaster Larry McReynolds has been tuning and caring for performance and race cars. Slick50 is proud to announce their multi-year partnership with McReynolds to serve as consultant, official spokesperson and representative for Slick50 and their products as they embark on a new brand expansion and communication program targeted at today's all around performance-minded drivers.

Read more from Larry McReynold's website

Matt Frahm returns to Go Green Racing
Go Green Racing announces the return of Matt Frahm as one of their NASCAR Nationwide series drivers for select races in 2012. In his first NNS race last season at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Frahm ran a consistent race and finished an impressive 26th. The young rookie backed up his strong debut with a 25th place finish in his second outing at Indianapolis.

From Go Green Racing-PR

Clay Greenfield is heading to Daytona
Local racer Clay Greenfield is heading to Daytona this year with hopes of really doing something special. Clay will be driving the #68 Dodge in the NASCAR Camping World Truck series race on Friday, Feb 24, 2012 which will be broadcast live on SPEED channel in the United States and overseas.

The Clay Greenfield Motorsports effort is looking for sponsorship to help get to the first few races of the year and beyond. The team currently owns three trucks and will race as much as funding will allow.

Read more from... Clay Greenfield Motorsports

T3R and Silas set for full season
Officials from T3R Motorsports announced Monday that the team will run the NASCAR Camping World Truck series full-time in 2012 beginning with the season-openeing NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, Feb 24, 2012. Bryan Silas, a native of Stuart, FL will be making his third appearance at the "World Center of Racing" as the driver of the #99 Rockingham Speedway Ford. The 24-year-old Silas, a Rookie of the Year candidate, will be led by veteran crew chief Cal Boprey, (During an interview on SiriusXM's Sirius Speedway program, Silas stated that he will be locked in to the field for the first four events. Points will be from one of TurnOne Racing's teams as their plan is to run only one truck this season.)

From Bryan Silas-PR

Kentucky Speedway to start installing tunnel
Today, construction crews will begin installing sections of a 42-foot-wide tunnel beneath Kentucky Highway 35 that will connect new Kentucky Speedway parking fields to the facility's original property. A crane will install the tunnel in 25 sections that are 42-feet wide and approximately 11 feet high. The tunnel and parking fields are elements of ongoing projects that will ultimately expand parking while improving automotive and pedestrian traffic flows during Kentucky Speedway events. Additional elements include widening the I-71 ramp at Exit 57 and widening KY 35. The first of two 2012 Kentucky Speedway event weekends will feature the June 30 NASCAR Sprint Cup series Quaker State 400, the June 29 NASCAR Nationwide series Feed The Children 300 and June 28 NASCAR Camping World Truck series UNOH 225. The second weekend will spotlight the Sept 21 NASCAR Camping World Truck series Kentucky 201 and Sept 22 NASCAR Nationwide series Kentucky 300. 

Tickets, campsites and daily infield Fan Zone passes for all events are available at and by phone 888-652-7223. Campsites and daily infield Fan Zone passes can be purchased by calling 859-578-2300.

Fans can watch the construction via web cam

From Kentucky Speedway

Monday, February 13, 2012
Waltrip to drive #40 Car in Daytona 500 with Hillman Racing
Hillman Racing and Aaron's Inc. announced today that two-time Daytona 500 champion Michael Waltrip will drive the No. 40 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota in the 2012 Daytona 500 on Feb 26.

The race will mark Waltrip's 74th start at Daytona in one of NASCAR's top three touring series (Sprint Cup, Nationwide and Camping World trucks) - the most of any driver.
"Aaron's really does make your dreams come true," said Waltrip. "When I was a kid thinking about racing in Daytona, I never dreamed I would start more NASCAR races there than anyone. That's amazing."
He said it takes many factors for success.
"You have to have a great sponsor to race and Aaron's has been a great sponsor for a long time." Waltrip said. "I appreciate what the folks at Hillman Racing including Joe Falk are putting together. Hopefully my experience at Daytona will help them get out of the gate strong with their new team,"
Daytona's 2012 Speedweeks promises to be busy for Waltrip. He'll race the No. 55 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota in the Feb 18 Budweiser Shootout, oversee his three Sprint Cup teams at Michael Waltrip Racing and host several top executives from corporate America attending the races with the team. Waltrip will also continue his television work serving as a commentator for SPEED-TV's truck series broadcasts and begin his new role as an analyst for the Fox NASCAR Sunday broadcasts joining his brother and Hall of Fame member Darrell Waltrip.

Aaron's Chief Operating Office Ken Butler said the chance to have Waltrip drive the No. 40 and Mark Martin drive MWR's No. 55 Aaron's Dream Machines in the Daytona 500 is too good of an opportunity to miss.
"We could not be more pleased to work out a deal to sponsor Michael for his 26th consecutive start in the Daytona 500," said Butler. "There isn't a better way to introduce our 2012 Dream Machine program than having both Mark Martin and Michael competing together in NASCAR's biggest race. I look forward to watching Michael and Mark bringing our Dream Machines to the checkers side by side in the first and second spots.
Hillman Racing is making its NASCAR debut this season, but the organization is anything but new to the sport, Team owner Mike Hillman Sr. played a key role in founding of Germain Racing and was the architect of the group's two NASCAR championships in 2006 and 2010. Hillman acquired the championship-winning NASCAR Camping World Truck series assets following the conclusion of the 2011 season and is set to embark as the owner and general manager of Hillman Racing for the 2012 season.
"I can't think of a better way to start off the season than to have Michael Waltrip behind the wheel of our car at Daytona," said Hillman, who credits longtime friend and co-owner Joe Falk for the inclusion of the Cup program under the Hillman racing banner. "I've been in this sport a long time, but I've never been so excited to go to Daytona. To have two Daytona 500 champions at the start of the season - with Ward Burton in the truck and Michael in the Cup car - positions Hillman Racing for a strong debut and a chance to win both races."
Waltrip made the first of his 25 consecutive Daytona 500 starts in 1987. He and Darrell are the only brother combination to win the Daytona 500. Michael's 2001 and 2003 victories made him one of only eight drivers with multiple wins in "The Great American Race." The 2012 Daytona 500 marks Waltrip's 767th Sprint Cup start and 1,054th NASCAR start. Waltrip, Richard Petty and Mark Martin are the only drivers with more than 1,000 starts in the sport's three top touring series.

Waltrip won last year's Daytona truck race on a dramatic last-lap pass. The victory came on the 10th anniversary of his first Daytona 500 victory.

From Michael Waltrip Racing - PR

PGA Pro Bubba Watson named Honorary Race Official for Subway Fresh Fit 500
PGA Pro Bubba Watson will drive The General Lee from Dukes of Hazard fame during the ceremonial parade lap as part of his duties as Honorary Race Official at the Subway Fresh Fit 500, March 4 at Phoenix International Raceway. The announcement was made today by PIR President Bryan R. Sperber.

Watson, who lives in Scottsdale, purchased The General Lee at the Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction in January.

Watson, who is known for his character and humility both on and off the golf course, was excited to receive the invitation from Sperber to participate during the pre-race ceremony.


Kenseth & his team strive to continue winning ways into the 2012 season
Roush Fenway Racing's Matt Kenseth knows what it takes to win, and the driver of the No. 17 Ford returned to Victory Lane three times in 2011, but looks to add to that total during the 2012 Sprint Cup season. Known throughout the sport as one of NASCAR's most consistent drivers, Kenseth finished fourth in the Chase standings thanks to earning top-ten finishes in over half of the season's races including his three victories. Kenseth had an average finishing position of 12.2 for the 2011 season which was his best average finish since 2006, and included an improvement from the 2010 season average of 12.6.

Read more from... RFR-PR

Mirka Abrasives Partners with Front Row Motorsports
Mirka Abrasives, Inc. is the newest partner to join Front Row Motorsports on the No. 34 car of David Ragan and the No. 38 car of David Gilliland for the 2012 season. Mirka Abrasives is an internationally recognized leader in the manufacturing of coated abrasives, tools, and innovative solutions for the automotive refinishing market - technology that the NASCAR Sprint Cup series team will use in its Statesville, NC-based race shop.

Read more from... Front Row Motorsports

Enter to win a weekend in a luxury RV at Pocono Raceway in June
Race fans, here is your chance to be treated like a king or queen for a weekend!

For the second year, the Ryan Newman Foundation and Charity Splits are offering a unique opportunity to meet NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Ryan Newman, have full access to the garage and pit road areas while enjoying VIP treatment at the races for you and your favorite friends or family members.

This annual on-line raffle offers an incredible Pocono Raceway experience. Star Coach Race Tours has once again partnered with the Ryan Newman Foundation by donating an all inclusive package for one lucky winner and five of his or her guests to attend the June 8-10, 2012 race weekend.

Read more from...Ryan Newman Foundation

Mark Martin: Daytona First Weekend Preview
Mark Martin has a special seat reserved for Saturday night's 34th annual Budweiser Shootout at Daytona that kicks off the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. The 1999 race winner will sit atop Michael Waltrip's pit  box. Waltrip will drive the No. 55 Aaron's Dream Machine with plans to give Toyota its first victory in the 75-lap, non-points race. Martin, who is sharing the No. 55 with Waltrip in 2012, has work of his own to do this weekend as his team prepares for single-car qualifying at 1pm on Sunday (FOX) for the Feb. 26 Daytona 500.

Read more and see videos from...Michael Waltrip Racing-PR

2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series opens with Shootout at Daytona
It's here. At last. The 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup series season ramps up this week with a bevy of traditional events leading up to the 54th annual Daytona 500.

The "Great American Race" is set for 1pm ET Sunday, Feb 26 (FOX, MRN Radio, and SIRIUS/XM NASCAR Radio to broadcast nationally).

But first things first. Thursday's 13 annual NASCAR Media Day opens Speedweeks activities at Daytona International Speedway, followed by Saturday's Budweiser Shootout at Daytona and Sunday's Coors Light Pole qualifying to set the front row for the 54th running of the Daytona 500. 

All lead up to the following week's Gatorade Duel (Feb 23, 2pm ET, FOX), two 150-mile qualifying races to complete the Daytona 500 field; the NASCAR Camping World Truck series NextEra Energy Resources 250 (Feb 24, 7:30pm ET, SPEED); the NASCAR Nationwide series DRIVE4COPD 300 (Feb 25, 1:15pm ET, ESPN) and of course, The Great American Race.

Based on last year's unprecedented NASCAR Sprint Cup series dead-heat championship finish, and Trevor Bayne's surprising and dramatic Daytona 500 victory in the legendary No. 21 Wood Brothers Ford, the 2012 season is filled with anticipation.

First up is NASCAR Media Day, during which more than 50 of NASCAR's stars will lay out their 2012 plans before an expected turnout of 300 print, broadcast and online reporters. NASCAR .com, ESPN, SPEED and SIRIUS/XM NASCAR Radio will broadcast live from Thursday's two sessions - 8am until 11:30 am and 12:30pm until 4pm ET.

Dress rehearsal for the Daytona 500 - The Shootout at Daytona will be held for the 34th time. The format is unchanged from 2011, with a slight wrinkle in eligibility requirements. Criteria are based upon the following qualifications, with eligibility based on a driver having competed in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series during the past season.

  • Drivers finishing among the top 25 in the 2011 championship driver points
  • Past Daytona 500 and Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola champions and winners of Shootout events.
As has been the case since 2003, the Shootout will be run in two segments, the first 25 laps and the second a 50-lap sprint for the win. That's 187.5 miles on the track's high-banked, 2.5-mile layout.

Following the first segment, a 10-minute "pit stop" gives crews the opportunity to make normal adjustments to their cars. Other notes: All work must be done on pit road or in the garage; teams may not change springs, shocks or rear ends; all green- and yellow-flag laps in both segments will count. Following the 10-minute "pit stop," the event's second segment remains a 50-lap sprint for the win.

Those entered, 25 in all, in Saturday's race... are listed below

Several drivers will be making their first appearances with new teams including Bowyer with Michael Waltrip Racing, Kahne with Hendrick Motorsports, Kurt Busch with Phoenix Racing, Ragan with Front Row Motorsports and Allmendinger with Penske Racing. Allmendinger already has one 2012 Speedweeks victory in last month's Grand-AM Sports Car series Rolex 24. Kurt is the defending champion of the Shootout.

A unique qualifying format - Sunday's Daytona 500 Coors Light Pole qualifying session is the year's only time trials in which just the front row positions are set. The remaining qualifiers are seeded into Thursday's Gatorade Duel, a pair of 150-mile races from which the final starting grid for the Daytona 500 is set. 

How important is Sunday's qualifying? Critical in that the remaining starters - as many as four cars - will be based upon speeds recorded in time trials, which begin at 1:05pm ET and can be seen live on FOX.

The most recent Daytona 500 pole winner to win the race was Dale Jarrett in 2000, one of two drivers (Bill Elliott is the other) to sweep Shootout, pole and race in the same season.

Fast Facts  
What: 34th Annual Budweiser Shootout at Daytona
Where: Daytona International Speedway
Track Layout: 2.5-mile tri-oval
When: Saturday, Feb 18
Time: 8:10pm ET
TV: FOX, 8pm ET
Radio: MRN; SIRIUS/XM NASCAR Radio, Channel 90
Distance: 75 laps/187.5 miles (25 laps in first segment; 50 laps in second segment)
2011 Winner: Kurt Busch

"Great seats are still available for the Daytona 500 by visiting or calling 1-800-PITSTOP"


Budweiser Shootout Entry List for February 18, 2012 at Daytona

Car #DriverSponsor
1Jamie McMurrayBass Pro Shops
2Brad KeselowskiMiller Lite
5Kasey KahneFarmers Insurance
9Marcos AmbroseStanley Tools
11Denny HamlinFedEx Express
14Tony StewartMOBIL 1
15Clint Bowyer5-Hour Energy
16Greg Biffle3M
17Matt KensethBest Buy
18Kyle BuschM&M's
20Joey LoganoThe Home Depot
22AJ AllmendingerShell Penzoil
24Jeff GordonDrive to End Hunger
27Paul MenardMenards-Peak
29Kevin HarvickBudweiser
31Jeff BurtonCAT
34David RaganMHP Power Pak Pudding
39Ryan NewmanWIX
42Juan Pablo MontoyaTarget
48Jimmie JohnsonLowe's
51Kurt BuschTag Heuer Avante-Garde
55Michael WaltripAaron's
56Martin Truex, JrNAPA
88Dale Earnhardt, JrNational Guard-Diet Moutain Dew
99Carl EdwardsFastenal
Eligible but not entered: MarkMartin, Brian Vickers,
Trevor Bayne, Bill Elliott, Geoffry Bodine, Derrike Cope, Ken Schrader, Terry Labonte.

#Daytona500 - DIS Launches Most Wide-Ranging Social Media Initiative ever
Daytona International Speedway plans to make Speedweeks and the 54th Daytona 500 a memorable event in many ways, starting with the largest and most expansive social media effort in NASCAR to further engage fans at the "World Center of Racing" and at home.

Special Twitter Hashtags and Handles
  • Join the conversation the DIS, media, teams and drivers on twitter with @DISupdates, #DAYTONA500, #BudweiserShootout, #GatoradeDuel, @NextEra_Energy Resources 250, #DRIVE4COPD300, #Speedweeks
  • Contact @DIS_help and #DIShelp for customer service questions on race days
  • Don't forget to also follow @NASCAR, #NASCAR
Download the Free DIS Mobile App
The DIS mobile app gives race fans FREE access to daily schedules, gate policies, directions, basic event information, news articles and interactive GPS facility and parking maps with search capabilities. Fans can also stay up-to-date with Daytona's Facebook, Twitter and RSS News feeds, as well as connect with and locate friends at the race via the "Friend Finder." Download the mobile app to your Sprint smart phone via Android Marketplace of iTunes Store.

QR Codes and Special NASCAR .com Sweepstakes
QR codes will be located throughout the track, linking race fans to the DIS mobile app, as well as event schedules and the Speedway's Facebook and Twitter profiles. Also, special QR codes will allow fans to enter a sweepstakes with NASCAR .com to win tickets to the 2013 DAYTONA 500 and on-site discounts during their visit to Daytona International Speedway.

Read more from DIS-PR

Kellogg Company, Pop-Tarts and Rice Krispies Treats 
to sponsor Roush-Fenway No. 6 Ford at Daytona
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 2011 NASCAR Nationwide champion, will be sponsored by Kellogg Company and its Pop-Tarts and Rice Krispies Treats brands for the Nationwide season opener at Daytona International Speedway on Feb 25, 2012. The Rice Krispies Treats logo will be featured on the hood of the No. 6 Ford Mustang with the Pop-Tarts logo accenting the quarter and TV  panels, as Stenhouse begins defense of his 2011 NNS title.


HendrickCars .com to Partner with RCR and No. 33 Chevrolet at Daytona will sponsor three NASCAR teams in select races in early 2012. The sponsorships will promote the new-look retail automotive website, which will re-launch Feb 1, and coincide with the HendrickCars .com "2012 Indy Dream Weekend" sweepstakes.

The program will kick off during Speedweeks in Daytona Beach, FL with primary sponsorship of Phoenix Racing and 2004 Sprint Cup champion Kurt Busch in the Feb 25 Nationwide series race and Feb 26 Daytona 500. It will continue with primary sponsorship of JR Motorsports and driver Cole Whitt in the March 17 Nationwide event at Bristol, TN.

In addition, HendrickCars .com will be a major associate sponsor of the Richard Childress Racing No. 33 Chevrolet with driver Elliott Sadler in NASCAR's biggest race, the Daytona 500.

Read more from...RCR-PR

Matt Lofton & Strutmasters join forces with Coulter Motorsports for ARCA season
Coulter Motorsports officials are pleased to announce that Roxboro, NC native Matt Lofton, has signed on to drive their synonymous No. 16 Chevy during the 2012 ARCA Racing series presented by Menards season.

Lofton rejoins Coulter Motorsports, after making three previous starts in 2011, two in the ARCA Racing series and one in the NASCAR Camping World Truck series. Teamm officials laid out the preliminary race schedule, which includes at least 15 ARCA races, comprised of the 10 events on SPEED and the races at Mobile, Salem, (April/September), Winchester and Madison.

Read more from Coulter Motorsports

Kyle Busch conducting Virtual Tweetup TONIGHT
With the help of Toyota Racing, I want to give you tickets to the Daytona 500!

So here are the instructions on the Virtual Tweetup I'm holding tonight.

Beginning at 8pm EST this evening, Feb 13th I will giveaway 5 pairs of tickets every 15 minutes. For 45 minutes, thirty (30) tickets in all.

How can you win?
You have to engage in the conversation about the question I will ask; there is no right or wrong answer, just your involvement in the conversation. Just be the 18th, 54th, 118th, 154th and 200th person to engage in the conversation using #CamryPaceCar and you will win 2 tickets.

Tickets will be mailed out on Tuesday, February 14th. Please see all rules listed on his site. (link provided below)

You must use #CamryPaceCar in your tweet
That is how we will track the people engaging in the conversation. All winners will also have their Twitter names posted here on our website after the contest!

Have some fun, find some fellow fans that you can start following; it is one big virtual tweetup!

Read more General Rules from Kyle Busch .com

Hackett Racing signs Derek White for Daytona
Ray Hackett Racing is hoping to begin its fifth consecutive year of racing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck series with a successful run at Daytona International Speedway. The team is pleased to announce the signing of Kahnawake, Quebec native Derek White. The NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona will mark the third straight attempt for the team with White behind the wheel of the #76 Ford. White will be making his first career start at the historic 2.5 mile superspeedway. Backing White's effort will be Native owned company, Warrior Gaming Associates. Ray Hackett Racing is looking forward to a full season slate in the truck series and has just finished work on a brand new shop in Salisbury, NC.

From Ray Hackett Racing-PR ...also will see paint-scheme

Some more odd owners points swaps?
Hearing that Frank Stoddard, owner of the #32 FAS Lane Racing team, has worked out a deal where the #55 Michael Waltrip Racing team (Mark Martin and Michael Waltrip as drivers) gets the 2011 owners points and a guaranteed starting spot in the Daytona 500 and next four races. Supposedly Terry Labonte will be the driver of the #32 Ford in the Daytona 500 and will have the past champions provisional to use if needed. Then the twist...after the Daytona 500, the #32 takes over the #6 owners points and will be guaranteed the next four races after the Daytona 500. This is all contingent on NASCAR's approval.

From Jayski's

New Darrell Waltrip book released
NASCAR Hall of Famer Darrell Waltrip knew that big changes were in the wind on the morning of February 18, 2001. For the first time in his long and storied career, Darrell would be watching the race from the broadcast booth high above the track, explaining its complexities to a television audience of millions. His younger brother Michael Waltrip would be among the starting drivers.

Sundays Will Never Be the Same opens with a heart-stopping account of that dramatic race.  

Read more from...DW Store

Stewart wins night 2 to Winter Freeze
On a night when even the most talented of veteran sprint car drivers struggled, Tony Steward once again proved his is one of the best racers of all time. The three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion put his winged 410 sprint car where no others dared to go on a frozen, rubber-down track, and passed Jason Sides coming to the white flag and went on to win his first ever University of Northwestern Ohio All Star Circuit of Champions  feature on the final night of the Second Annual Winter Freeze at Screven Motor Speedway.

Read more from...Screven Motor Speedway

NASCAR champ Tony Stewart yuks it up on Tim Allen's show
Car guy Tim Allen, meet professional car guy Tony Stewart. 

The actor, whose passion for collecting classic automobiles may only be matched by fellow comedian Jay Leno, and one of racing's most successful drivers got together to film an episode of Allen's ABC comedy "Last Man Standing."

Allen, who grew up in Detroit, is the star of the show, and surely had no problem gearing up for recording an episode with a stock-car legend.

Steward, in November, finished a stunning run to NASCAR's 2011 Sprint Cup championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway, piloting his No. 14 Chevrolet to five wins in the season's last 10 races to nip Carl Edwards.

Stewart brings that famous Chevy into the episode, and the three-time champion's deadpan humor was on full effect...

Read more and see video clip at...USA Today

Check back throughout the week as this page will be updated with each day's current news.

As always, Thanks for reading!

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