Curtis Turner for 2016 HOF

Curtis Turner for 2016 HOF

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Fundraising Idea, F-1, Cotton Owens, Ambushers, & Stuff

Killing Two Birds With One Stone
Since there’s been no clues yet on the stolen Ramo Stott memorabilia, I have the perfect solution for when it is recovered. They sell tickets and have a pay-per-view of the public butt whooping of the dirt bags who stole the memorabilia with the funds raised from the ticket sales and pay-per-view going to help out Sam Ard. It’s a win-win situation for everyone. The memorabilia is returned, justice is served, and Sam Ard gets some sorely needed assistance.
Rupert Murdoch To Buy F-1?
Apparently billionaire and media mogul Rupert Murdoch is looking to buy F-1 along with some possible help from Ferrari. Now why would he want to do that? For one thing, look at where F-1 races. China and the Arab world. Places where the money is. It would allow him far better access into those markets for his global presence and increasing company revenues. For another thing, it would allow Murdoch to move the current F-1 coverage from Speed TV to Focks Sports. A real competitor to NA$CAR that could be broadcast after their NA$CAR season goes off the air. F-1 is also a global product versus NA$CAR which is North American. Plus we’ve got the potential for a possible conflict of interest between Focks broadcasting F-1 AND NA$CAR should Murdoch buy F-1. But conflicts of interests are nothing new to the France family as most race fans know.
Nashville Disproves NA$CAR Theory
For years, we’ve heard the same old, worn out line that Cup drivers put butts in the seats. For a weekend in which there was no Cup race and the Buschwackers continuing to invade the Busch Series, we saw plenty of empty seats at Nashville. Sure, the economy may have played a small part in it but ever since Faux King Brian started bundling up the race weekend instead of letting the Busch Series run on their own and saying that Cup drivers fill the grandstands the grandstands have become emptier and emptier.
And it doesn’t help that the Buschwackers have won all 8 races so far this season. What sort of message is this sending out to not just the Busch regular teams but also to their sponsors and also potential sponsors? Working with some of these underdogs on the sponsorship programs I can tell you based on my own experience that the number of sponsorship proposals sent out versus the number of sponsors landed is ridiculous. 38 proposals sent out and not a single sponsor interested. Why? Because they’re not owned by Roush, JGR, RCR, or HMS, the only teams who get any sort of TV coverage during the BSPN broadcasts. You don’t see Jay Robinson Racing getting any coverage. Herman was lucky to get a post-race interview at Nashville. You’re lucky to see Robert Richardson get an interview. Or any of the Means Motorsports drivers. If the Cup drivers are supposed to be “helping so much”, then why aren’t the Busch regulars benefiting from their presence? They’re not. The only “benefit” the Busch regulars are getting is less purse money at the end of the day and more wear and tear on their equipment. They’re not even breaking even in most cases.
So since this “pick a series” thing isn’t working, I have another solution which will fall on drunken eyes. Why give the Buschwackers anything at all? No money, no manufacturer points, no ownership points, no contingency award points, and no air time on TV. Let the Busch regulars get the lion’s share of everything since there’s not that much to get to begin with. If there’s nothing in it for the Buschwackers, they won’t stick around. No sponsor is going to want to be on a car that doesn’t get any air time, which is what the Busch regulars suffer from right now. The Cup team owner’s aren’t going to stick around if they’re not making any money off of the Busch series operation. No Buschwacker is going to want to race if there’s not even so much as a trophy in it for them. Money is what makes most of today’s Cup drivers show up at the track. So if there’s no financial incentives of any sort, they won’t show up and the Busch Series can go back to being what it originally was. A “AAA”  racing series.
Richmond Scare Tactics Alive And Well
Once again, Richmond is using their scare tactics in an attempt to sell tickets. Only this time they’re throwing in the possibility of lost jobs into the mix through their political mouthpieces or politicians who are too gullible to see the truth. NA$CAR/I$C/the France family won’t cut a race from Richmond. It’s almost like saying they’re going to cut a race from Daytona. They’ve invested too much hype and marketing into Richmond and it’s place regarding the Chase for the Chumps. They’ve held Richmond up as being the model for the next generation of tracks that they’re not going to build. They keep saying the racing there is so exciting. If they really wanted to get more fans to attend the races there, they might first start by providing better security for the fans themselves both on the track property and the surrounding areas. The track isn’t located in the best of neighborhoods and it’s not unusual for fans to have their camp sites looted or robbed. So provide some better security first. Then maybe, when fans feel secure, they might start showing up. Of course, you might need to get rid of the generic car first. Like Bristol, the generic car has done little for the racing at Richmond.
Smokey’s “Best Damned Garage In Town” is Gone

A fire burned down what was left of Smokey’s garage. The place really should’ve been a historical landmark or a national treasure. I’m not saying that because I’m a race fan but because Smokey’s innovations didn’t just apply to the race track. Smokey pioneered several things we use in our cars today. The extended tip spark plug, which if you never saw an old spark plug you wouldn’t know what I’m talking about. Not to mention variable ratio power steering, another thing most folks take for granted today. Most race fans are more familiar with Smokey’s racing innovations like the oversized fuel hoses, the chrome-plated aluminum bumpers, or his 7/8 scale Chevy Malibu. Smokey did say he didn’t want any monument or shrine but I think automotive history would’ve been better served had the garage been preserved.
Cotton Owens: A Good Case For The HOF

Us older fans probably remember Cotton Owens for his accomplishments as a driver and team owner. He was rated as one of NASCAR’s, not NA$CAR’s, Top 50 drivers. He was also the owner of the then famous #6 Dodge that David Pearson campaigned for several years and which won the 1966 Grand National Championship with Pearson behind the wheel. Cotton’s been inducted in the International Motorsports Hall of Fame. Cotton also built a car for an Elvis movie, which coincidentally had the #6 on it. He built a Dodge Challenger for Brock Yates to run in the 1972 Cannonball Run, the real thing not the movie. As a driver, Cotton had 9 wins, 52 Top 5, and 84 top 10 finishes. As an owner, Cotton had 38 wins, 177 Top 5, and 241 Top 10 finishes. So Cotton is definitely one to be considered for induction into the 2012 class.
BTW, who finished #2 to Pearson in the 1966 season? None other than 1966 Rookie of the Year James Hylton. Yes, the same James Hylton who’s still racing today in ARCA and was a former crewmember of Rex White’s 1960 Grand National winning team.
Sponsor Ambushers, Another Garage Predator
Unfortunately there’s another kind of ambush predator out there called “sponsor ambushers”. For example, a small team that finally lands a sponsor will have a few guests from that sponsor come to the races. The next thing you know, the ever present “mystery people” from NA$CAR or the Cup owned or affiliated teams, are “accidentally” bumping into these guests on the way to the bathroom or concession stand and their card “accidentally” falls into that person’s pocket. Then, coincidentally, a private jet just happens to land near that sponsor’s headquarters the following week and before you know it that small independent team doesn’t have a sponsor anymore. This happens more often than you think. And this isn’t based on my own experiences with having sponsors stolen or re-assigned by NA$CAR but from one of the underfunded, underdog teams we don’t hear about in the media. I had to leave out some names and one particular incident which would pretty much end that team’s career due to some high-powered folks using their clout to destroy that team, the team owner(s), and their reputation.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Tax Deductions, Missing Memorabilia, HOF, & Other Stuff

Sam Ard Donations Can Be Tax Deductible

If you’re looking for a tax deduction for next year, you can donate to the Sam Ard Care Fund through Motor Racing Outreach (MRO) at:
Samuel J. Ard Care Fund
Smith Tower Suite 405
555 Concord Parkway South
Concord, NC 28027

Ramo Stott Memorabilia Still Missing


Still no word or any leads on the Ramo Stott memorabilia that was stolen from the Stott household in Iowa. There is still a reward for the arrest and conviction of the dirt bags who stole it.
Spinning the Ratings Numbers
NA$CAR’s latest “spin” has to do with the ratings numbers. If they moved a race from one weekend to another, but there was still a race on, then the numbers are still valid. For example, if race #5 of this season is measured against race #5 of last season, then the numbers comparison should be valid. However, because the race locations may be a week earlier or later than last season, the numbers are being skewed to show that this season race at Talladega for example is up versus last year’s race even though they’re not on the same weekend. “Flip it on full spin cycle boys, we want those numbers to look good”.
Nielsen Media Research estimates there are 115.9 million television households in the U.S.A. "Household Rating" is an expression of the percentage of households tuned in to any show at a given time. Therefore, a 1.0 rating would equal an average of 1.159 million households were watching during the program.
2012 HOF Nominees

The announcement was made for next years HOF nominees. And once again I’ll say that Raymond Parks Jr and Red Byron should be inducted. They should’ve both been inducted in the first class. Without the financing of Raymond Parks Jr’s moonshine, Bill France Sr would’ve had to fold up his tent and gone home. In the tradition of real sports, Red Byron should’ve been inducted in the 1st class as he was the first champion. But as this is about family oriented sports entertainment and Faux King Brian doing his best to sever the ties of moonshine and the South to the origins, revising history, and making of what was once a sport, both of them lost out.
After those two, here’s where it gets tricky. There are a lot of worthy folks on the list. The Wood Brothers who revolutionized the pit stop. Two time Grand National and American Motorcycle Association Champion Joe Weatherly. Two time champion Herb Thomas, who’s career was ended early thanks to Carl Kiekhaefer because Herb changed teams and Kiekhaefer was irate about it and had Herb intentionally taken out during a race in Shelby NC after which Herb was never quite the same. Two time Grand National champion Tim Flock who was blackballed by Bill France Sr along with Curtis Turner for trying to form a badly needed drivers’ union which is still needed today is another worthy candidate. There are some sentimental favorites for me on the list. Fireball Roberts, NASCAR’s first real superstar, who was my hero as a kid. Hometown hero Curtis Turner. NASCAR’s original Golden Boy Fred Lorenzen. Cotton Owens who was a success as both an owner and driver and was selected as one of NASCAR’s Top 50 drivers. But despite the accomplishments and contributions of some of these early legends, they won’t make it in because they don’t have the “name recognition” or “star quality” that Faux King Brian is lusting after. Some still have the heavy taint of “redneck”, “Southerner”, and “moonshine” to their names and legends which the Revisionists, PC crowd, and Faux King Brian despise so much. We have one driver who could be selected because of his ethnic background, and no, I’m not going to mention his name because that would be used by Faux King Brian‘s Diversity Program as yet another sham showpiece and actually dishonor the driver. Pick who you want and vote for them. Drop an e-mail to Dustin Long as he’s one of the voting members and let him know who you think should be in the 2012 class and why.
IndyCar Moving Forward
While the dinosaur that is NASCAR still continues on with it’s generic race vehicles and will eventually embrace 1980’s engine technology with the TBI (Throttle Body Injection) system, IndyCar is bringing in engine manufacturers who are using current, state-of-the-art engine technology and will be moving away from their generic 1980’s Dallara bodies to a variety of body styles next season. According to Autoextremist owner/writer Peter De Lorenzo, “Because the buzz at Long Beach wasn't about how great the ALMS is, it was about how many quality teams from the ALMS and Grand-Am were seriously considering giving IndyCar a shot in 2012”. This could boost the car count for IndyCar to levels where they could actually have to resort to “go or go home” qualifying procedures and hurt the Grand-Am Series, which is owned by NA$CAR, because of it‘s dwindling car counts under the “leadership“ of Jim France, Faux King Brian‘s uncle, and the real lack on interest by NA$CAR in the Grand-Am Series and the incorporation of NA$CAR‘s “techniques“ to generate artificial excitement. What’s it going to take to get NA$CAR into the 21st Century, run relevant engine technology, and have race vehicles that actually resemble their street counterparts? A walk-out by the Big 3, which they have threatened to do if NA$CAR doesn’t get off their slower than molasses rear ends and start making the cars readily brand identifiable as either a Mustang, Challenger, or Impala.
Another Woman to Drive in the Indy 500
Conquest Racing has announced that they will be fielding a car for Pippa Mann. This means that the Indy 500 field will have 3 female racers and one female celebrity in the field. Folks don’t know it because Pippa’s not a celebrity but she was the first woman to sit on the pole at IMS and did it in the Indy Light cars. Pippa will be joined by drivers Simona De Silvestro and Ana Beatriz and female celebrity the Queen of Hype.
IndyCar to Bid Bye Bye to the QoH Next Season
It’s looking like the Queen of Hype won’t be back in the IndyCar Series next season based on what sources are telling me. She’ll be spending next season promoting her branding and marketing in NA$CAR full-time instead of the current part-time branding and marketing schedule she’s had the last two seasons. If the branding and marketing schedule on BSPN turned your stomach the last 2 seasons, just wait til next season when it‘s all Danican‘t all the time on BSPN.
No Problems at Talladega for Robby

Robby had his Fast 5/Speed Energy show car and souvenir hauler at Talladega and didn’t have a single problem with his show car being towed, being banned from the I$C tracks, or being accused of “ambush marketing” which is also used by a home improvement company, a car manufacturer, a certain cell phone provider who is the only one allowed thanks to the exclusivity agreement, and the “fine” folks at Focks who employ ambush marketing every time they shill for one certain auto manufacturer who owns Jabber Jaws, certain drivers who are brand names by themselves, the official fuel provider, the official tire provider, and every time they slip in a logo for the Cup and fuel provider on either the roof cam, in-car, or rear cam views with the driver‘s name and car info.
Speaking of which, anyone happen to notice which driver’s fans are being targeted by American Ethernol with the roof cam shots?
SCCA Action at Long Beach
In the SCCA World Challenge race at Long Beach, female driver Shea Holbrook won the Touring Car division. Joey Hand co-piloted the Team BMW RLL M3 to the ALMS GT win at Long Beach. So far he has won the Rolex 24, Sebring, and Long Beach - 3-for-3. Looks like Joey could have a banner year if this keeps up. Can or will anyone step up to the challenge?
US Forces Still Involved With Japanese Relief Efforts
About the only thing we’re hearing about now in the media is the occasional reports about the nuclear reactors that were damaged during the earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan but our troops are still there helping with various relief efforts. Now that roads are re-opened, helicopter efforts launched and recovered from the USS Ronald Reagan have been scaled back. Our troops will continue to assist in the relief efforts there until the Japanese government can fully take over for our troops. Japanese Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa said the U.S. aid underscored the importance of the two nations’ military alliance. “At no other time have I felt as proud of our alliance with the United States,” Kitazawa was quoted by the Wall Street Journal as saying. So while things may be scaling back some, we’ve still got goodwill ambassadors on the ground lending a helping hand.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Ramo Stott Memorabilia Stolen, Sam Ard Auctions, Drug Testing & More

Ramo Stott Memorabilia Stolen
From: Corrie Stott Racing
Reward for the arrest and conviction for the slime bags that broke into my parents property in Iowa. Lots of "Ramo Stott" memorabilia was stolen...If anyone has information please drop me a message.... just want to keep the heat up on this !!!!
I will keep posting this until the scum comes to the surface !

To the younger race fans, Ramo Stott probably doesn’t ring any bells but to the older fans, Ramo is probably better known because of his racing in USAC, ARCA, IMCA, & NASCAR before it became NA$CAR. Ramo also sat on the pole of the 1976 Daytona 500. If that race doesn’t sound familiar, then you haven’t been following the sport very long. Check out the links to find out a little more about the Ramo Stott and the 1976 Daytona 500.
Should you have any information regarding the stolen Ramo Stott memorabilia, you can contact Corrie Stott through his Facebook account, his web site, or yours truly. 
More Sam Ard Memorabilia Being Sold

There are 3 more items on E-Bay that Sam is auctioning off in order to help pay his medical bills and there will eventually be a total of 7 trophies that will be auctioned off to help keep a roof over his and his wife’s head. NA$CAR is aware of Sam’s situation as both the NA$CAR VP of Racing Operations and the Minister of Propaganda have both received tweets about Sam’s situation in the form of a link to Dave Moody’s article about Sam. So they can’t deny they are ignorant that Sam needs help. They may be ignorant of many other things but not that Sam and his wife Jo are in desperate need of help.

Drug Testing and NA$CAR
Graham Light, NHRA VP of Racing Operations, that stated everyone is on the list to be tested, and he's been checked several times each year himself. NA$CAR’s rules state that all officials are subject to testing and those officials include Faux King Brian, Mafia Mike, and others and yet there appears to be no testing of them despite their own rules calling for it. And yes, they are aware of it. It was brought to their attention on twitter. So how hard can it be? If the NHRA can do it, why can’t NA$CAR and their officials?
Racing at Talladega
I think this pretty much sums it up:
Have You Figured It Out Yet?
Every week, the driver of the #24 car is selected as the pizza fan favorite. That same driver is sponsored by a major cola company that owns that same pizza company. Is it a coincidence that he “wins” that honor week after week?
BZF Lawsuit Over Taped Phone Conversations Flawed
It’s my understanding that under NC law that as long as one part, in this case the ex-Mrs. BZF, is aware that the conversations are being recorded they’re legal. So Faux King Brian has no grounds on that one. As to extortion, I’m not sure whether or not that is true however, based on the Imperial Ego and its past history, I have no doubt he has probably made some admissions to things he shouldn’t have. He could’ve admitted to not paying child support and alimony, his dalliances during his marriage to the former Mrs. France, his illegal campaign contributions made in other peoples’ names, possible legal favors done for him in the Florida courts in return for certain considerations, some much speculated upon drug use, or other things which could cause him either extreme embarrassment, discomfort, or maybe even result in some jail time if publicly revealed. It could also be a sympathy ploy on his part to gain the support of divorced men who feel their ex-wives took them to the cleaners. Or, he plain and simply doesn’t want those tapes admitted and is trying any desperate measure and accusation he can to keep them out of the lawsuit proceedings he has currently going on with his former wife.
Sam With Two of His Trophies

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Sam Ard Trophy For Sale, TMS Coverage, & Things

Sam Ard’s 1982 Dogwood 500 Trophy For Sale
Since the France family still refuses to do the right thing, Sam is having to sell off another of his trophies. This is the last time this trophy will be seen on E-Bay. Even though Dave Moody wrote a piece about Sam and Jo Ard’s situation, he’s the only person in the NA$CAR media to do so. Where are all these writers who talk about remembering the history of the sport and those that made it? Where’s the outrage for a man who helped build this sport that has to resort to selling off his memories to help pay for his medical bills that are a result of an accident under the guise, supervison, and sanctioning of NA$CAR? Where is the conscience of those that helped contribute to this situation? It’s pathetic really. There’s no morals or conscience when it comes to helping out the former greats of NA$CAR unless it directly puts a buck into the France family pocket.
If you want to help Sam out and do what the France family won’t, here’s the link for the trophy:  



Why Versus is Better than Focks

During the IndyCar race, Versus used the split-screen coverage to show the racing and run commercials. Focks preferred to show 5-8 laps of commercials before interrupting them for a few laps of racing. Versus commentators don’t make up excuses when Danica or the sanctioning body messes up. Focks commentators makes up excuses for everything. Bad tires, bad officiating, and poor performance of the Chosen Ones and cheerleads for one make of vehicle and certain drivers.. Focks uses all sorts of gimmick shots that can cause even sailors to get seasick. Versus keeps the gimmick shots to a minimum preferring to show the action on the track of groups of competitors. When Will Power had pretty much run away with the lead in the closing laps, Versus showed the racing that was going on in the back of the pack. Focks preferred to show single car coverage of Matt Kenseth running away with the lead. Is it any wonder why race fans voice their concerns and dissatisfaction with the poor coverage and commentary of Focks at The Daly Planet week after week during race season?
The National Anthem at TMS

For everything that was wrong at TMS this past weekend, the one thing that Eddie Gossage did get right was bringing in a US Army band to play the National Anthem. And Dale Jr, smack your crew chief upside the head for not paying the proper respects to the flag every time he doesn’t do it. Which so far has been every race this season.
Captain Thunder Interview of Jeremy Mayfield

Jeremy Mayfield did two interviews with John Nevins aka Captain Thunder in which Mayfield was able to give his side of the story without being interrupted or censored. There are some folks who wish Mayfield would just go away, which they’re entitled to. One very striking thing Mayfield pointed out during his interview had to do with one of the drug tests that were done by NA$CAR. He had a test run by an independent lab before he submitted his urine sample to NA$CAR for testing and had another test done afterwards by the same independent lab. Perhaps folks have heard of Lab Corp? They’re one of the top testing labs in the country. NA$CAR’s results came back positive while the Lab Corps results came back negative. So how could that be? Lab Corps has no horse in this race. They couldn’t care one way or the other just so long as their reputation remains intact. They don’t care about the results just so long as they followed the established guidelines and protocols called for by SAMHSA regarding drug testing. Aegis Labs on the other hand is contracted by NA$CAR so they definitely have a vested interest in showing that their “results” are consistent. Especially after they’ve already lost at least one false positive lawsuit using their questionable techniques. I’ve also proven that NA$CAR has fibbed on at least one occasion when their official spokesman stated unequivocally that there were no witnesses to Mayfield’s independent tests and yet Mayfield did have a witness that is known to me as well as a camera crew documenting everything Mayfield was doing.
I know folks have already made up their minds about Mayfield, even though under the basic premise of our laws that you’re innocent until proven guilty and it probably won’t change their minds, give a listen to the interviews and get Mayfield’s side on some of the issues that were brought up by Captain Thunder and his sidekick. 

How About Those Ratings for Texas? 

 According to USA Today, coming in at #32 in the weekly ratings was a repeat of “The Big Bang Theory” with 7.3 million viewers. Coming in at #33 in the ratings was the race at TMS with 7 million viewers just beating out #34 Family Guy and #35 a repeat of America’s Funniest Home Videos at about 6.5 million viewers. What happened to those 75 million fans that NA$CAR is supposed to have? Also, there’s a big disparity between the numbers being reported showing the numbers being up and what they truly were versus last season. Unfortunately I can’t find the article right now but it showed how the numbers were being jumbled around on this year versus last year and how the ratings were actually down.


Gimmick Shots From Focks at TMS
There were 160 gimmick shots for the Cup race .

In-Car Shots 22
Ground Camera Shots 6 
Roof Cam Shots 60 
Rear Cam Shots 24 
Wall Cam Shots 48
The majority of roof cam, rear cam, and in-car cam shots were from the #18, #22, #29, #48, & #88.
Ms Terry DeBris at TMS

When Matt Kenseth had an 8 second lead at Lap 209, Ms Terry DeBris, dressed up as a Texas Longhorn, was found to be grazing along the back straight thus causing Caution #4. But due to the poor lighting on the back of the track and lack of fans there, she wasn’t shown. Apparently she’s been taken away to the Ft Worth Stockyards by Eddie Gossage and is currently waiting to be bid upon.

Focks Faux Pas 

During the 1st Caution, Jabber Jaws said “You’re over 200 mph going into that turn”. Later during the race a roof cam shot of the #18 car with telemetry showed the car didn’t get above 195 mph.


On Lap 173, Mike Joy said “They’re NA$CAR’s two winningest drivers” in reference to Mr. Happy and Hambone Hamlin. NA$CAR’s winningest drivers are The King and The Silver Fox with 200 wins and 105 respectively.
Lap 192, Mike Joy said “Seating down the front stretch and back stretch sections are nearly full but for some sections down past pit road towards Turn #1”. An overhead shot from the blimp/helicopter clearly showed empty seats at Lap 11Lap 19, Lap 29, Lap 30, & Lap 114.

On Lap 211, Mike Joy said, “Hope that clears things up with 211 laps to go”.

How Come?

As easy as it was to show the computer screen which covers speeding on pit road during the race at TMS, how come NA$CAR won’t allow a camera in race control showing the pit road speeds during the pit stops or hook it into a direct feed of some sort to Focks so they could put it on a scroll on the bottom of the screen? That would end some fan complaints regarding the drivers who are perceived to be speeding and if it can be sent via wifi to the teams, they wouldn’t have any grounds to complain when they do get nailed for speeding.

The Race 

Pretty simple really. Matt Kenseth got up front and ran away with it. Outside of the cautions, not a heck of a lot of action was shown on the track outside of some of the pack shots shown from the wall cams. One or two of the Chosen ones passing each other. Most of the race coverage revolved around Kenseth, Johnson, Shrubbery, Mr. Happy, and Busch the Elder with an occasional appearance by Dale Jr and Trevor Bayne. Unlike Versus, as mentioned earlier, Focks decided to show Kenseth all by himself during the closing laps of the race so if there was any mid-pack racing going on the home audience never saw it. A McRace at a McTrack with a McCar. With Fords sweeping the weekend and really running away with the Cup race, you can almost bet there will be some whining from at least one car manufacturer.

Up Next 

The plate disaster called Talladega. Will we have a repeat of the boredom that was Daytona or will there finally be a plate race that doesn’t call for 2 pots of coffee like a McTrack? Guess we’ll have to watch and see.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Robby's Texas Nightmare

What seemed to be just another race weekend at Texas Motor Speedway has turned into a nightmare for Robby Gordon. As usual Robby, as the owner of Speed Energy Drink, sent the check in to SMI to pay for the lot space for his souvenir hauler and as usual it cleared the bank. That is considered to be a binding contract in several states. No misrepresentation on Robby’s part since it was clearly from Speed Energy Drink. He didn’t have a problem at Las Vegas or Bristol, two other SMI tracks, and didn’t have a problem with the ISC tracks at Daytona, Fontana, Phoenix, or Martinsville. Once Robby’s Speed Energy Drink souvenir hauler and show car showed up, that’s when the nightmare ensued.
First, Texas Motor Speedway towed Robby’s Fast 5 show car away. The show car was there as a part of a Universal Pictures promotion for the upcoming Fast 5 movie. What’s odd is that there were other energy drink show cars parked in the same area that looked like they’d been parked there for several months and none of them were towed. And there were the souvenir haulers for the other energy drinks all along the row of souvenir haulers and nobody was bothering the Junior haulers (Amp Energy Drink splashed all over it), the Red Bull Haulers (Red Bull a competitor of Coca Cola’s Full Throttle), or Shrubbery’s souvenir trailer (with NOS in plain view on the trailer).

Check it out TMS has threatened to take all of our product and tow our merchandise hauler out of the racetrack! WTF

Then they were wanting to haul away the Speed Energy Drink souvenir hauler and confiscate all of the Speed Energy product that there. When Robby made his initial enquiry as to what was going on, he was told by Texas Motor Speedway that the track was sponsored by Red Bull and it was out of respect to Red Bull that they were doing this. Gee, that sure is funny. All of the SMI tracks are sponsored by Coca Cola, who manufactures the Full Throttle energy drink and distributes Monster Energy Drink. So that would mean that SMI violated their contract with Coca Cola by taking on the Red Bull sponsorship at Texas Motor Speedway. But wait, it gets even better.
Robby’s then sent a Twitter message that he didn’t get permission from the sales department to hand out free samples of the Speed Energy Drink.
Texas Motor Speedway
Every brand who hands out samples needs authorization from our sales team. Every sports venue has these rules, and we're not against anyone.
Since when did a salesman get to override a written contract? The worst that Texas Motor Speedway should’ve been able to do is make them keep the free sample behind the counter. At Charlotte and Atlanta, I’ve had samples handed to me from companies who weren’t on track property. And Robby hasn’t had a problem with this at the other SMI tracks prior to Texas. But wait, it gets even better.
Robby then receives a letter from SMI which prohibits his Speed Energy Drink souvenir hauler from all SMI tracks. Gee, could that be because Robby’s Speed Energy Drink isn’t listed as one of SMI’s “valued partners” that the Speed Energy souvenir hauler is being banned from all the SMI tracks? Since when did tracks have the authority to prohibit sponsors from showing off their wares at the tracks? Didn’t NA$CAR approve Speed Energy as a sponsor? Does this also mean that the tracks can ban certain makes of vehicles from racing because they’re not the “official vehicle” of that particular track?

Just so you guys know, TMS sent the letter that they gave us to revoke our access to promote to ALL the SMI properties. Which means next SMI track you prob wont get any SPEED Energy. Really?

And how about some of the ads Texas Motor Speedway has used with Dale Jr in his AMP uniform which clearly show the Amp logo and Mountain Dew logo and show the Amp or Mountain Dew car? Isn’t that a bit hypocritical of them as they’re supposed to be a Coca Cola track? Or a Red Bull track if you believe Texas Motor Speedway?
And since the Fast Five movie logos are on the car this weekend, Universal Pictures was expecting some reasonable appearance obligations that Texas Motor Speedway is now interfering with. Will SMI, Gossage, and Bruton stand together when they realize a fight with a major movie studio who has more lawyers than SMI does is the consequence, or will finger pointing ensue?
And how about the actual race coverage? When they showed the Dodge Chargers of the Race graphic, they showed the 2 & 22 cars from a blimp/helicopter shot but the 7 was nowhere to be seen. During the race, there’s usually an accidental shot of Robby’s car usually when he’s near one of the Chosen Ones, he’s in or near a wreck, or he’s being lapped. But no, not a single shot of his car the entire night unlike all the previous race of the season where we at least caught a small glimpse of at least a quarterpanel.

Anyone remember what happened at Las Vegas when Robby Gordon was qualifying? No? Let me refresh your memory with this video clip.  
One thing Speed Energy did make clear in a Twitter is that THEY aren’t calling for fans to boycott Texas Motor Speedway
We would never tell any1 to boycott anything. just showing what is out there. TMS is a great facility & we all want what's best for the sport
So while Speed Energy Drink might not be calling for a boycott, I’m thinking fans might want to rethink their plans involving Texas Motor Speedway, any events they host, any events they sponsor, and also purchasing any goods from any of the track’s sponsors. like Coca Cola, UPS, Dickies, Brookshires, Samsung Mobile, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Chevy, Bank of America, WinStar World Casino, Firestone, and others. Fans might also want to go to the speedway’s web site under the “contacts” section and drop Eddie Gossage, the man who forget to put Dale Earnhardt Sr.’s driver’s uniform in a safe, secure area which resulted in it being stolen, a line and let him know your opinion on this whole deal and your future plans and those of your friends and family members regarding Texas Motor Speedway and the track’s sponsors.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

One Bad Apple, Martinsville, Texas, Ethanol Problems, & Other Stuff

One Bad Apple Ruins It For Everyone
I think by now folks have figured out that I stick up for the little guys and have been trying to help out Sam Ard and his wife Jo. There are some people out there who really need to be taken out behind the woodshed and be straightened out. Jan, who is Sam’s nurse and a friend of the Ards, sent this to me:
Recently Jo had Sam sign some cards for a man who had mailed them to her stating that he only wanted it for his son's collection. Jo even sent him a patch. This man (E-Bay User ID: pit4nascar - me) paid her absolutely nothing. Now he has shown his appreciation by listing it for $25.00 or best offer on E-bay. Sam is not even in the photo. Because ...of this fraud Jo has requested that no signatures will be given except through me.
 So for you real fans out there who have helped out Sam and have supported him in his fight against Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease, my thanks and my apologies on behalf of the Ards for having to take measures like this to protect Sam’s good name and to keep low lifes like this one from exploiting Sam’s medical condition.
Stuart Virginia Still Home to Wood Brothers

I had a chance to talk with Eddie Wood of Wood Brothers racing briefly at the autograph session at the old Wood Brother’s shop turned museum Last Friday night and asked him about the shop being in NC. Eddie said that he still lives in Stuart and commutes to the shop in Harrisburg. So even though they may have moved the shop to NC to be closer to the action, Eddie still has his roots firmly attached to Stuart.
Martinsville…The New Bristol?
Back before Bristol was reconfigured, it was THE track you had to go to at least once in your lifetime because of the intensity of the racing there. Since the track was reconfigured and the generic race vehicle was introduced, the 500 “parade laps” conducted there have lowered it’s stature from being a legendary, action-filled, knock-down, drag-out, bare-knuckle brawl to the same hum drum status as that of Fontucky and the cookie cutter 1.5 mile tracks . Martinsville on the other hand has elevated itself to THE Action Track as witnessed this past Sunday. Lots of beating, banging, trading paint, chrome horn use, and chess-like pit strategy. And while it wasn’t a sell-out, it had more fans there than I’ve seen in the last 3 years and folks weren’t falling asleep. They were cheering, booing, and applauding at what was happening on the track. So if you’re not happy with what Bristol has become, I suggest going to Martinsville.
No Tire Problems at Martinsville?
"Here's what we know: The tire is different than what it was last year. The tire's not failing. The tire has some different drivability characteristics that everybody is dealing with. But it's a combination of a tougher left side and softer ride side, so the cars feel different. It's hard to make a judgment either way right now. We'll see what 500 laps of racing does." - John Darby at Martinsville

I consider Darby’s statement pretty interesting considering a couple of “brave drivers” talked about how the tires were wearing down to the cord during the race in post-race comments. Are we going to have an entire season of tire problems?
Martinsville Live Versus Martinsville on TV
I got several e-mails and Facebook messages about how horrible the Focks coverage of the Martinsville race was. Here’s a sample. This is from Vince on Facebook:
We got the same ole Racertainment from Faux. Plenty of ultra tight shots, in-car cams, roof cams and bumper cams. Couldn't tell who was where on the track half of the time. The incidents on the track were continually missed live and shown in replay instead. DW was his usual obnoxious self. It's all about him after all.
This is from Joe on Facebook where we were originally discussing an article by Monte Dutton. As I was at Martinsville, I let Joe know what I saw and this was his response:
We don't ever get to see that stuff on TV. They always follow the lead cars. I know there is always good racing in the pack somewhere, but we are at the mercy of FOX. Wish they would put a camera inside Robby's car for a race, now that would be entertaining.
This is from an e-mail from Dave in Texas:
I just don't see how a new fan could get interested in this entertainment, err, sport. The TV "coverage" is of one car at a time. All the "action" is on replay (if at all). Blabbering, huge graphics and hundreds of commercials (usually the same ones over and over again - this week were even the same one back to back!?!). What a turn off.
Well, the end is here. Hope they like what they have done!
I sure hope the fine, feathered finks at Focks are reading these comments as well as those at The Daly Planet. I know exactly what the folks at home missed. Lots of good racing going on mid-pack on back. Clean passes in addition to the normal bumping and banging. I watched Busch the Elder, Robby Gordon, Paul Menard, and Trevor Bayne racing each other although some of it wasn’t for position. Bayne probably learned a thing or two following Robby around as long as he did. You didn’t get to see cars start out strong on the beginning of a run and fall back to where they started from at the beginning of the run. Instead, the home audience got the see the usual pre-prescripted “usual suspects” and maybe a couple of others because of blown tires or wrecks but not the rest of the racing going on mid-pack on back. It’s a shame really because to me, the best racing wasn’t what was happening up front.
Two Thumbs Up to Mr Happy’s Crew
After the Victory Lane celebration at Martinsville , Mr Happy’s crew pushed the car down the front straight and around Turns 1 & 2 to get it back to the garage area. When several fans were cheering about Mr Happy’s win and congratulating them, they stopped pushing the car and thanked the fans and held up one of the bottles of champagne they had with them. This is a lot better than some other crews do pushing the winning car back to the garage with their fans cheering. So to Mr Happy’s crew and their recognition of the cheering fans, two thumbs up.
Tim Richmond Lawsuit
If you have access to the PACER system, Tim Richmond's case # is C-C-88-0204-M, filed in the Western District Court of NC, Charlotte Division. Filed in 4/281988, Timothy L. Richmond versus National Association For Stock Car Auto Racing, Inc (NASCAR), et al .
A Real Anomaly
Here’s a real anomaly for you. Johnny Sauter, a Truck Series regular, actually won the Truck Series race at Martinsville. He’s the first Truck Series regular to win a race this season. 3 Cup drivers won the first 3 races even though they were said to be an anomaly by the Minster of Propaganda. What was that about anomalies Ramsey?
New Street Names Coming
At the site of the old Augusta International Raceway in Hephzibah Georgia, two new street names will be added when the next round of street names are approved for the housing area there. My good friend Rex White and Wendell Scott will be having streets named after them. They’ll join Fireball Roberts, Dave MacDonald, Frank Warren, and others in having streets named after them. Hopefully the Scott family can make it down there for the official ceremony when it happens. Rex is a fixture at the annual Augusta International Raceway drivers reunion and car show so you know he’ll be there.
Giving Credit Where Credit’s Due
Not many folks know this but North Wilkesboro Speedway, particularly Steve Wilson and his wife Ann Marie to be exact, pioneered the idea of using Twitter to provide race updates to fans who were following the races at North Wilkesboro Speedway on Twitter. At one point, North Wilkesboro was burying NA$CAR and their controlled media by providing these updates and passed them in popularity on Twitter as Tony Stewart remarked after the first race that North Wilkesboro used Twitter to update the race fans. Since then, you’ll notice a lot of NA$CAR’s controlled media types provide a constant barrage of Tweets for practice sessions and the races to update fans. But they’re just being copycats of the track that wouldn’t give up the ghost and is still a favorite in the hearts of many a race fan.
Somebody Finally Noticed Jeb Burton
If you’re a fan of Ward Burton, then you know his son has been trying his hand at racing the last few years. Somebody in the media finally discovered it and wrote about it. Day late and a dollar short?
New Race Fuel Stinks
The old unleaded race fuel use to have a somewhat nasty smell to it but the ethanol that’s being used now makes the old race fuel smell like Chanel #5. I can’t put my finger on it exactly but there’s something about the odor that really doesn’t settle right with the olfactory senses as I found out at Martinsville.
Ethanol Plant Files for Bankruptcy
And BZF went to ethanol for exactly what reason? Besides the obvious one of filling his bank account.  

Ethanol Causing Problems with Motorcycles?
The Italian manufacturer Ducati is having to replace plastic fuel tanks because they are becoming distorted. Apparently, when the tanks have to be removed for maintenance, they've swollen so much they won't fit back on the bike! Removing the gas tank for some maintenance duties is common on motorcycles. Dealers are replacing the affected tanks as needed. Ducati and the regulatory agencies are investigating but won't divulge their findings yet. BMW motorcycles are also having a similar problem in America. Since the problem only exists in the USA, the thinking is the ethanol in the gas is causing the problem.
The AMA (American Motorcycle Association) is vigorously protesting the proposed increase in the amount of ethanol in our gasoline (to E-15).
Texas Doomed to Poor Attendance This Weekend
It seems that there’s not a heck of a lot being done to advertise this weekend’s race at TMS. Here’s an e-mail from a fan there:
The races are this weekend at TMS. Almost nothing in the Dallas paper about it. No one seems to care.

The track did the same thing they did last year. They raised ticket prices $5.00 this week, but put a $10.00 off coupon in Sunday's paper for the qualifying and Nationwide "race" (that Kyle Busch will "win"). So......I'm supposed to be too stoopid, again, to see that it's not a $10 coupon but a $5 coupon. I find that insulting. Boy, that Eddie Gossage is a genius, ain't he?

There will be a pre-race "concert" by 3 Doors Down. It is $79 (not including your ticket). For that you get to stand on the grass in front of the stage to hear them do 4 songs. Wow. At Indy a few years ago, 3 Doors Down sang all during the driver's introductions - no extra charge. Again, how 'bout that Eddie?
I’m not sure but I think I got a stomach bug or some bad hot dogs at Martinsville so I have to cut this one short folks. I’m beginning to think my toilet is my new lounge chair I’m spending so much time on it.
Keep an eye on the kids and God bless the troops.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Improving Racing At Fontana And Other Stuff

How to Improve Racing at Fontana
I know, the usual suggests have been tear it down and turn it into a shopping mall that looks like it’s under some grandstands or to put in a smaller track like Richmond and maybe get some action going on.
After watching this past weekend’s snooze-fest, Race Mama came up with this solution:
man I gotta say I am glad I was in church for most of that.....the first 95% were a borefest...but it did pick up for the last ten...since they only want to race hard for 10-30 laps I say they start doing heat races...a 100 miler and the bottom 10 are parked at the end, then another 100 miler with the next 10 knocked out then maybe two 50 milers and again more are knocked out then a 30 miler dash for the win with about 15 cars!

This is a worthwhile idea and I’m not just saying that because it’s Race Mama. Breaking the race up like this and doing eliminations would definitely keep folks interested. Of course, the home viewing audience might only get to see 57% of each segment due to the current commercial coverage on Focks being briefly interrupted with a few scenes from the track. But maybe if they restructured the commercial programming to run during the breaks between segments they might get a larger viewing audience. However, as I have previously written, NA$CAR does not take unsolicited suggestions plus as it makes sense, they won’t implement it. But hey, maybe it’ll give them something to think about instead of which sponsor to take away from which team.
Real Racing Story
You never get to hear about what really goes on with a race team when you’re watching at home because you never get to hear what’s going on over the team radios except when it fits a part of the storyline, it causes controversy, or it’s humorous. Here’s some things from last weekend at Fontana between team owner Jay Robinson and driver Derrike Cope.
Fontana... practice... Derrike on radio to Jay..." WOE! She's loose as a goose Jaybird!" says DC. Jay's reply... "Going in, the middle or driving off?" DC says... "mmm... all the above, plus the front stretch... mmm and the back stretch. Woe... I'm coming in!"
Fontana... qualifying... Derrike on radio to Jay... " We're smoking Jay... there's a fire inside the car!... We're burning down Jaybird!" Jay's reply... shut her down DC... we're already in the show!" “Hey DC, you OK?” Derrike: " What else can happen to us this weekend?” “OMG! I think we have an electrical short in the wiring harness!" Jay's reply: "Nice job DC... that was your fastest lap of the weekend!" Derrike simply keyed the mike!
Fontana... race... Derrike: "Jaybird, we're way loose out here! NO WAY... we got a tire down! The tire is shredded Jay... we're killing the car on the way in Jay! Everything’s flapping back there!" Jay... real calm like... "that's why she was loose DC... that tire had a nail in it. Not your fault... we're ok... lots of racing to go... and that should answer your earlier question?" DC: "?, what ?" Jay..." You asked what else could happen to us today".... silence on the radio.... mike keyed. DC..."that I did".
Later in race... crash panel has been removed. DC: "Jay, there stuff flying around in the cockpit... this is ridiculous!" Jay: " Sorry DC, without that're vacuuming the track!"... Benny's thought... "I'm calling HOOVER, RED DEVIL, ORIK, Electrolux for sponsorship opportunities!"
Hat Trick in Hand?
Racer Joey Hand could be on his way to the ultimate hat trick in endurance racing. He’s already won the 24 Hours of Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring. The hat trick comes with the 24 Hours of Le Mans. If he can do that, that will be the ultimate for an American driver. Back in the old days of NASCAR, there use to be a hat trick but with the loss of Rockingham plus Darlington and Atlanta being cut back to a single race each, and the schedule being changed around, the old NASCAR hat trick is long gone.
Other Racing Series Ratings Up
The ratings for IndyCar & ALMS are up for the first time in quite a while. The IndyCar broadcast of St. Pete recorded the highest overnight numbers since 2007 race at Mid-Ohio. While the 1.7 is not close NA$CAR’s 4.1, the increase shows that people are beginning to find an alternative. ALMS is reporting that they set an all time viewership record for Sebring. The number of households and viewers on ABC, ESPN2, and was more than 3 times the next highest total which occurred during the 2009 season. So is this a fluke or the real deal? I guess we’ll know in a few more races.
While it’s too early to tell for sure, these numbers could be an indication that folks are ready to expand their need for speed outside the ovals of NA$CAR. I watched some of the 12 Hours of Sebring on a webcast and it was pretty exciting. Good camera work, good commentary, and the best part of all, none of the constant cheerleading and shilling we’re stuck with week after week with Focks and the best part of all? No commercials.
3-Time Indy 500 Winner Weighs In
During the IndyCar race at St Petersburg, 3-time Indy 500 winner Scott Goodyear weighed in on the Queen of Hype’s running in both NA$CAR and IndyCar and it wasn’t pretty. Goodyear stated that while she might qualify and finish OK, by doing both there is no way that QoH will win in either racing series. He stressed the need to maintain the necessary discipline in one series or the other and he sited the example of Sam Hornish Jr. During the year that Sam ran in both racing series, his overall performance suffered. His IndyCar performance suffered and his NA$CAR skills didn’t improve. But by the end of this season, we’ll know for sure where she’ll be racing next season and it probably won’t be in IndyCar as she’s burned too many bridges there and has managed to P.O. just about every driver and team owner in the garage area. That should make it easy for her to decide to go full-time in NA$CAR when she‘s told there‘s no room on any team for her.
Imagine This in Cup Racing
Nebraska Racecar Driver Gets Probation After Crash

A racecar driver has been given 18 months' probation for an intentional crash at a Nebraska track.
Court records show 21-year-old Cory Dumpert, of York, was sentenced Monday in Cass County District Court for third-degree assault and criminal mischief. He earlier pleaded no contest.
The charges stem from a June crash at I-80 Speedway in Greenwood. Dumpert sped into the infield pits and rammed another driver's car.
Dumpert races street stock cars. After the crash, NASCAR suspended him from racing for the rest of 2010.
The track gave him a one-year suspension and a $500 fine.
Think about the impact this would’ve had on the Edwards-Keselowski incidents. Or even Iron Head‘s career? Or some of the other incidents we’ve seen over the years. So while it’s not acceptable at a lower level of NA$CAR racing it’s OK with the big boys? Once again, the infamous double standard in action.
Something to Ponder
The lamestream media made a lot out of the finish at Fontucky and how wild it was. Compared to the rest of the race it was wild. But was it really wild when compared to the 1976 Daytona 500 finish when Petty and Pearson battled right to the end? Or the 2003 Darlington finish between Ricky Craven and Busch the Elder? Did the finish at Fontucky really match those in wildness? Think about it.
Is There a Real Rivalry Brewing?

Back when Kimi Raikkonen and JPM were teammates in F-1, there wasn’t much love lost between them. One was always trying to best the other and JPM usually came out on top. Now with Kimi showing up in NA$CAR, could we be seeing a real rivalry between the two happening, especially as they’ll be on different teams? I guess we’ll see once Kimi moves into a Cup ride.