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March 2017 NASCAR News Archive

Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, XFINITY Series, Camping World Truck Series and Racetrack news for the month

Go to a certain date in this month:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31


News from March 31, 2017

Qualifying rainout puts Larson on the pole at Martinsville: For the second straight week, Kyle Larson will start on the pole for a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event. He can only hope the result of the race is the same, too. Last week, Larson won the pole at Auto Club Speedway and went on to win last Sunday's race at the two-mile track. On Friday, when rain washed out time trials at Martinsville Speedway, Larson earned the top starting spot for Sunday's STP 500 (2 p.m. ET on FS1) on the basis of owner points. However, Larson will have to overcome his own history at the .526-mile track.9More](3-31-2017)

Rain forces cancellation of Martinsville qualifying; Larson on pole: #42-Kyle Larson will start from the pole for the STP 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway after qualifying was cancelled. The starting lineup was set by the rule book (owner points).
#24-Elliott starts second, followed by #78-Truex, Jr., #2-Keselowski, #22-Logano, #1-McMurray, #21-Blaney, #14-Bowyer, #4-Harvick, and #18-Busch.
Driver(s) who will miss the race: none as 38 were entered for 40 spots.
See the qualifying results (how the field was set) on the qualifying results page and the complete starting lineup on the Starting Lineup page (pdf).(3-31-2017)

Actor Rockmond Dunbar to serve as grand marshal for STP 500: Actor Rockmond Dunbar, the star of the Hulu series "The Path" and of the Fox series "Prison Break", will serve as the Grand Marshal and say the most famous words in racing, "Drivers, start your engines," for Sunday's STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway. In addition to "The Path" and "Prison Break," Dunbar can next be seen in Brad Furman's crime thriller, LABYRINTH, opposite Johnny Depp.More(3-31-2017)

Friday practice for the STP 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway is over, after 45 minutes, the top-five and notes:
#11-Hamlin 95.256
#18-Busch 95.060
#42-Larson 94.970
#31-Newman 94.908
#1-McMurray 94.889
slowest: #51-Hill 91.647 & #33-JEarnhardt 90.283
most laps run: #24-Elliott, 30 laps
Top 10 consecutive laps: #22-Logano 94.749
#19-Suarez wrecked and will have to go to a backup car.
The session started about 45 minutes late after morning rain push the schedule back.
See fastest speeds, laps run on the Martinsville Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf)(3-31-2017)

Bad Boy Mowers on board with Whitt for Martinsville Speedway: The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will head to Martinsville Speedway this weekend for the sixth race of the season. Bad Boy Mowers, specializing in commercial and residential zero-turn lawn mowers, has signed on to serve as the primary sponsor of the #72 with driver Cole Whitt. Famed as the 'Paperclip', the 0.526-mile oval is located in Ridgeway, VA where Whitt has six previous MENCS starts, has completed 2,950 laps, with a best finish of 18th.[More](3-31-2017)

Final Truck practice canceled in Martinsville: Rain forced NASCAR to cancel the final practice for the Camping World Truck Series teams on Friday at Martinsville Speedway. The cancellation of Friday afternoon's on-track activity at the short track led to changes in Saturday's schedule. The Trucks will now qualify an hour later, at 12:05 pm/et in order for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series to have a practice session.(3-31-2017)

Bell fastest in opening Martinsville Truck practice:#4-Christopher Bell was fastest during the opening practice for Saturday's Camping World Truck Series race at Martinsville Speedway at 93.724mph. #7-Brett Moffitt, #18-Noah Gragson, #33-Kaz Grala, #29-Chase Briscoe, #88-Matt Crafton, #51-Harrison Burton, #21-Johnny Sauter, #23-Chase Elliott and #8-John Hunter Nemechek were the remainder of the top-10. 34 trucks practiced. See complete results on the Practice 1 speeds (pdf)(3-31-2017)

Martinsville, Bassett and Magna Vista High School Bands join forces for the first time ever at Martinsville: On Friday nights in the fall, they're on opposite sides of the field. However, Sunday afternoon, the Basset, Magna Vista and Martinsville High School bands will join forces to play the National Anthem at Martinsville Speedway, as part of the prerace ceremonies for the STP 500. This marks the first time the three high schools in the City of Martinsville and Henry County have integrated to form one.[More](3-31-2017)

Drivers appearing at Autism Awareness Day at the Races in Dover: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers Danica Patrick and A.J. Allmendinger will make appearances at the Autism Awareness Day at the Race program at Dover International Speedway on Sunday, June 4. Patrick and Allmendinger will meet and greet families of children on the autism spectrum before racing in the "AAA 400 Drive for Autism" Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at the Monster Mile.[More](3-31-2017)


News from March 30, 2017

Keen Parts debuts on the #32 at Martinsville: Matt DiBenedetto and the #32 Keen Parts/CorvetteParts.net team currently sit 28th in owner and driver points in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. The series will be traveling from one of its' biggest racetracks on the circuit at California, a two-mile oval, to Martinsville Speedway with Keen Parts as the primary sponsor for the first time in 2017.[More](3-30-2017)

Auto Club Speedway penalty: #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr's crew chief has been fined $5000 for a lugnut violation found during post-race inspection at Auto Club Speedway.[More](3-30-2017)

Donahue, MB support Blue Lives Matter at Martinsville:Kyle Donahue is set to make his second NASCAR Camping World Series start at Martinsville Speedway, just a few weeks before his 17th birthday. Donahue and his No. 63 Chevy Silverado crew will be supporting "Blue Lives Matter" in the Alpha Energy Solutions 200.[More](3-30-2017)

Motorsports Safety Group to sponsor Kvapil in Martinsville:Beaver Motorsports announced Motorsports Safety Group (MSG) as the primary sponsor for the No. 50 Chevrolet Silverado of Travis Kvapil at Martinsville Speedway for the Alpha Energy Solutions 250.[More](3-30-2017)

Dover and Iron Source reach multi-year corporate partnership: Dover International Speedway and Iron Source, a Delaware-based construction equipment company, have reached a multi-year corporate partnership agreement, Speedway and Iron Source officials said today. The agreement with Iron Source, which has offices in Georgetown, Del., and Smyrna, Del., makes the company the "Official Equipment Rental Provider of Dover International Speedway."[More](3-30-2017)

New parking options available at Kansas Speedway: As race fans continue to ask for new parking and tailgate options, Kansas Speedway is introducing some new options for 2017 while keeping general parking free for fans. These parking and tailgate options are limited and must be pre-purchased. Passes will be available until April 28 or spaces are sold out. Passes for these options will be mailed.[More](3-30-2017)


News from March 29, 2017

Penske to appeal Keselowski penalty: "After having the opportunity to review the facts, Team Penske has decided to appeal the penalties following the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race in Phoenix. We have requested an appeal hearing and we plan to follow the process as outlined in the NASCAR rulebook. The appeals administration has granted our request to defer the two races remaining on Paul Wolfe's suspension until the results of our appeal are known.".[More](3-29-2017)

Crew chief Dave Rodger to take leave of absence: Joe Gibbs Racing announces that crew chief Dave Rogers will take personal leave for an indefinite period of time and Scott Graves will assume the role of crew chief for the #19 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team. Graves has been serving as the crew chief for JGR's #18 NASCAR XFINITY Series team. His replacement will be named next week.[More](3-29-2019)

Stewart-Haas to appeal Harvick penalty UPDATE: Officials with Team Penske have not determined if the organization will appeal penalties handed down to the #2 team and driver Brad Keselowski on Wednesday, according to a statement from the team. Stewart-Haas Racing, meanwhile, announced it would appeal the penalty for the # 4 team of Kevin Harvick.
UPDATE: Stewart-Haas Racing team has dropped its appeal of penalties issued last week for an unapproved track bar slider assembly used during the March 19 race at Phoenix, according to a NASCAR spokesman. Crew chief Rodney Childers will serve a one-race suspension this weekend at Martinsville. Harvick was docked 10 points and Childers fined $25,000 for the violation. Harvick, on his weekly SiriusXM show, said: "It's kind of like growing up as a kid -- sometimes you get in trouble and you have to suffer the consequences."[More](3-23-2017)

SunEnergy1 makes first appearance on the #24 at Martinsville: For the first time in the 2017 season, SunEnergy1, one of the world's largest privately held solar energy companies, will adorn the hood of the #24 Chevrolet SS. This weekend's race at Martinsville Speedway will be the first of four races that SunEnergy1 will serve as the primary sponsor for Chase Elliott.[More](3-29-2017)

Goodyear tire test coming up at Michigan: #10-Danica Patrick, #78-Martin Truex Jr. and #27-Paul Menard are coming to Michigan International Speedway a little early. As part of a Goodyear tire test, the three drivers will hit the track Tuesday, April 4, and Wednesday, April 5.[More](3-29-2017)

Advance Auto Parts Aboard Allgaier's #7 for Three Races in 2017: JR Motorsports announced today that Advance Auto Parts will serve as primary sponsor for the #7 Chevrolet for three NASCAR Xfinity Series races in 2017 as part of a continued partnership between Valvoline and JRM. The automotive parts provider will be on Justin Allgaier's Camaro next week at Texas Motor Speedway (April 8), as well as at Darlington Raceway (Sept. 2) and Charlotte Motor Speedway (Oct. 6). [More](3-29-2017)

Estes Express Lines teams up with JGL Racing and Jeb Burton: JGL Racing is proud to announce that Estes Express Lines has joined them to sponsor Jeb Burton starting with the upcoming NASCAR XFINITY Series event at Texas Motor Speedway. Burton will pilot the #24 Estes Express Lines Toyota for the first of his scheduled events on April 8th at the Fort Worth, Texas track. [More](3-29-2017)

LTi Printing partners with BKR: Brad Keselowski Racing announced that Michigan-based LTi Printing will serve as primary sponsor for the No. 19 Ford F-150 driven by Austin Cindric for a select number of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races, starting with the Alpha Energy Solutions 250 on April 1 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway.[More](3-29-2017)

Gamecocks join Bolen Motorsports for Martinsville: The University of South Carolina is joining forces with Bolen Motorsports for this weekend's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event at Martinsville Speedway to showcase both the University's Men's and Women's Basketball teams securing Final Four berths in the 2017 NCAA Tournament. The No. 66 will feature a special Gamecock paint scheme this Saturday in support of both teams and their bids for National Championships.[More](3-29-2017)

April is Racing Virginia Month: Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced the signing of a resolution to declare the month of April as Racing Virginia Month. This recognition honors the storied history of racing in the Commonwealth of Virginia, which dates back over 70 years. The NASCAR weekends at Martinsville Speedway and Richmond International Raceway showcase the only major professional sport to annually visit The Commonwealth.[More](3-29-2017)

Limited spots remain for Talladega's Sunday VIP Experience: Extremely limited quantities remain for Talladega Superspeedway's one-of-a-kind Sunday VIP Experience. The behind-the-scenes opportunity gives fans unprecedented access to NASCAR's Biggest and Baddest track prior to Sunday's GEICO 500 that includes a personal tour by Motor Racing Network (MRN) personality Glenn Jarrett, as well as other incredible benefits.[More](3-29-2017)


News from March 28, 2017

Fr8Auctions sponsoring Cassill at Martinsville: Fr8Auctions, an Atlanta-based auction house that sells excess freight inventory, will partner for a third straight year with Front Row Motorsports when it sponsors Landon Cassill's #34 Ford in this weekend's STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway. Fr8Auctions partners with freight lines, distribution companies and consumer product-based businesses to help sell excess, discontinued or damaged inventory outside of traditional distribution channels.[More](3-28-2017)

Kalahari Resorts & Conventions extends partnership with Richard Childress Racing: Richard Childress Racing (RCR) and Kalahari Resorts & Conventions have renewed their partnership for the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season. Now home to America's Largest Indoor Waterpark, Kalahari Resorts will once again serve as the primary sponsor on Ryan Newman's #31 Chevrolet SS at Pocono Raceway on June 11, 2017, as well as host RCR during its two stops on the Series schedule in Pennsylvania.[More](3-28-2017)

Ganassi 'concerned' when Larson races sprint cars: Chip Ganassi said he would be happy if Kyle Larson, who won his second Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race Sunday, decided he no longer wanted to race sprint cars. The dangers of sprint car racing were further illustrated Saturday when veteran and former NASCAR, ARCA and IndyCar driver Dave Steele died in a crash at Desoto Speedway in Bradenton, Fla.[More](3-28-2017)

Ted Minor joins Long Motorsports:Since the early '80's, racing enthusiast Boyd Long has been in and around NASCAR. Whether he was in the pits breathing in the fumes for the love of racing or working on a deal, racing has been his passion. Now, his passion has become a reality. Welcome to Long Motorsports and driver, Ted Minor.[More](3-28-2017)

Atlanta Motor Speedway to delay repave: After an in-depth review and exhaustive consultations with NASCAR, Goodyear, race teams and drivers, Atlanta Motor Speedway has elected to postpone its plan to resurface the 20-year-old 1.54-mile racing surface at least until after its 2018 NASCAR weekend.[More](3-28-2017)

'American Ninja Warrior' to Film at Daytona International Speedway: "American Ninja Warrior," the popular Emmy nominated sports competition show that airs nationally on NBC, is coming to Daytona International Speedway. "The World Center of Racing" will serve as a filming location on April 7-8 for season nine of American Ninja Warrior, the action-packed series that follows competitors as they tackle a series of challenging obstacle courses in both city qualifying and city finals rounds across the country.[More](3-28-2017)

Racing Virginia to provide Virginia motorsports coverage: A new, digital platform, RacingVirginia.com, will launch as part of an unprecedented collaboration among Virginia's motor sports venues. The Racing Virginia website and social channels will provide exclusive news and information about racing action in the Commonwealth. [More](3-28-2017)


News from March 27, 2017

NASCAR will examine wall Kenseth hit at Auto Club Speedway : A NASCAR executive said series officials will work with Auto Club Speedway officials to see if there is a way to alter the angle of the inside wall Matt Kenseth hit in Sunday's Cup race. Kenseth hit a portion of the wall that was angled toward the track. Safety equipment was stationed behind that wall.[More](3-27-2017)

Auto Club 400 overnight TV ratings: Fox earned a 2.9 overnight for Sunday's NASCAR race in Fontana, CA.[More](3-27-2017)

Cautions by LaJoie and Gaulding impact Auto Club race: BK Racing is hitting the wall for a high average so far in 2017. After #23-Gray Gaulding and #83-Corey LaJoie each caused caution flags in Sunday's race at Auto Club Speedway, the team kept up its proficiency at slowing down Cup Series races.[More](3-27-2017)

Bowyer gets first top five in 52 races: Clint Bowyer captured his first top five in 52 races when he came home third in Sunday's Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway. Bowyer started 17th and was able to make his way to the front quickly driving the #14 Ford, posting a 5.7 average running position through-out the race en route to the checkered flag.[More](3-27-2017)

Sunday Auto Club Notebook: Even though he had just posted his best Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series finish since 2015, Clint Bowyer didn't expect effusive praise from the driver he succeeded in the No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford. So when Bowyer pulled onto pit road at Auto Club Speedway on Sunday after running third behind race winner Kyle Larson and runner-up Brad Keselowski in the Auto Club 400, Stewart's reaction, as a car owner, was predictably restrained.[More](3-27-2017)

Auto Club Race and Commercial Breakdown: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday's race.[More](3-27-2017)

Truck Series entry list: There are 32 trucks entered for Saturday's Alpha Energy Solutions 200 at Martinsville Speedway. See the complete list on the Martinsville entry list page (pdf).(3-27-2017)

Edsel Ford to serve as honorary pace car driver at Martinsville: A Ford will lead the field to green in more than one way Sunday at Martinsville Speedway. Track President Clay Campbell announced today that Edsel Ford, the great-grandson of Henry Ford, will be the Honorary Pace Car Driver for the STP 500. Ford, who also serves as a board member for the Ford Motor Company, will drive the Ford Shelby 350GT pace car at the start of the race.[Martinsville Speedway](3-27-2017)

Automobile Club of Southern California renews Auto Club race sponsorship: Officials from Auto Club Speedway and the Automobile Club of Southern California today announced a multi-year race entitlement extension for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series AUTO CLUB 400 at Auto Club Speedway. The three-year deal marks 14 years of race sponsorship from Auto Club and the 20th year as a marketing partner. Auto Club has been a partner with the Speedway in Fontana since it opened in 1997, then sponsoring the Winston West Series. [More](3-27-2017)


News from March 26, 2017

Race Recap: After string of seconds, Kyle Larson captures victory in Fontana: What a difference one position makes. After three straight second-place finishes in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, polesitter Kyle Larson finally found Victory Lane, pulling away after an overtime restart to win Sunday's Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway. Larson took the checkered flag at the end of the second extra lap as team owner Chip Ganassi celebrated from his perch atop the pit box.[More](3-26-2017)

Larson wins at Auto Club: #42-Kyle Larson won the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway for his 1st win of the season, 1st win at Auto Club, and 2nd career win. Larson started from the pole and dominated much of the race, leading 109 of the 202 laps.
#2-Keselowski finished second followed by #14-Bowyer, #78-Truex, Jr., #22-Logano, #1-McMurray, #19-Saurez, #18-Busch, #21-Blaney, and #24-Elliott.
#42-Larson led at the end of the first stage, with Truex, Jr second. Truex, Jr. lead at the end of stage 2, with Larson 2nd.
There were 17 lead changes among 8 drivers and 7 cautions for 29 yellow flag laps.
The average speed was 136.359mph.
Scheduled Race Re-Airs: Sunday, March 26 at 10:30pm/et on FS1; Monday, March 27 at 6:30am/et on FS1; Monday, March 27 at 9:30am/et on FS2
See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and more at:
Unofficial Race Results page (pdf)
Penalty Report (pdf).
Cumulative Report (pdf).
(3-26-2017)

Race Fast Facts - Auto Club:
Kyle Larson won the 21st Annual Auto Club 400, his second victory in 116 NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series races.
This is his first victory and fourth top-10 finish in 2017.
This is his first victory and second top-10 finish in four races at Auto Club Speedway.
Brad Keselowski (second) posted his third top-10 finish in nine races at Auto Club Speedway. It is his fourth top-10 finish in 2017.
Clint Bowyer (third) posted his eighth top-10 finish in 17 races at Auto Club Speedway.
Daniel Suarez (seventh) was the highest finishing rookie.
Kyle Larson leads the point standings by 29 points over Chase Elliott.
This is the fourth Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series weekend sweep at Auto Club Speedway: Kyle Larson (2017), Kyle Busch (2013), Matt Kenseth (2007) and Kasey Kahne (2006).
(NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(3-26-2017)

Top-Ten Stage 2 Results (lap 120) of the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway (lap 120/200):
#78-Truex, Jr., 10pts
#42-Larson, 9pts
#24-Ellliott, 8pts
#14-Bowyer, 7pts
#77-Jones, 6pts
#1-McMurray , 5pts
#18-Busch, 4pts
#22-Logano, 3pts
#11-Hamlin, 2pts
#2-Keselowski, 1pt

Top-Ten Stage 1 Results (lap 60) of the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway (lap 60/200):
#42-Larson, 10pts
#78-Truex, Jr, 9pts
#24-Elliott, 8pts
#1-McMurray, 7pts
#14-Bowyer, 6pts
#18-Busch, 5pts
#22-Logano, 4pts
#77-Jones, 3pts
#21-Blaney, 2pts
#11- Hamlin, 1pts

2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Driver Chase Standings:
[after Auto Club, race 5 of 36]
1) #42-Kyle Larson [1 win], 243
2) #24-Chase Elliott, 214, -29
3) #78-Martin Truex Jr [1 win], 205, -38
4) #2-Brad Keselowski [1 win], 179, -64
5) #22-Joey Logano, 174, -69
6) #1-Jamie McMurray, 162, -81
7) #21-Ryan Blaney, 157, -86
8) #14-Clint Bowyer, 143, -100
9) #4-Kevin Harvick, 137, -106
10) #18-Kyle Busch, 136, -107
11) #31-Ryan Newman [1 win], 123, -120
12) #11-Denny Hamlin, 123, -120
13) #5-Kasey Kahne, 122, -121
14) #41-Kurt Busch [1 win], 118, -125
15) #77-Erik Jones, 116, -127
16) #6-Trevor Bayne, 100, -84
See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and
Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf)

First ever Martinsville Speedway hauler parade set for Thursday: Before the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series cars take to Martinsville Speedway for the STP 500, the haulers transporting the cars will take to US 220, for the first ever Martinsville Speedway Hauler Parade. On Thursday, the haulers will start at the city limits and drive down 220 south to the race track, giving fans the opportunity to cheer for their favorite car along the route. The parade will start around 5 p.m.[More](3-26-2017)


News from March 25, 2017

Happy Hour (final) practice for the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
#24-Elliott 187.480
#78-Truex, Jr. 187.378
#21-Blaney 187.066
#77-Jones 186.994
#42-Larson 186.814
slowest: #33-Earnhardt 175.910 & #51-Hill 173.269
best 10 consecutive lap ave: #24-Elliott 182.180
notes: #24-Elliott and #42-Larson make contact with the outside wall in separate incidents. The teams are repairing the cars. #18-Busch spun off turn 2 but did not hit anything.
See the fastest speeds, best 10 consecutive lap average, laps run on the Happy Hour Practice speeds page (pdf) (3-25-2017)

First Saturday practice for the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway is over, after 55 scheduled minutes, the top-five, slowest and notes:
#77-Jones 187.251
#24-Elliott 186.843
#31-Newman 186.732
#48-Johnson 186.384
#2-Keselowski 186.292
best 10 consecutive lap ave: #77-Jones 183.048
slowest: #55-Cope 171.846 & #51-Hill 172.356
notes: just as practice ended, #38-Ragan had a tire go down and spun and hit the wall, and will go to a backup car. With about 10 minutes left in practice, #4-Harvick bounced off the wall, took the car to the garage and the team is working on the car in hopes of not going to a backup car.
See the fastest speeds, best 10 consecutive lap average, laps run on the Saturday 1st Practice speeds page (pdf) (3-25-2017)

Pit Stall Selections: The selections of pit stalls for the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway have been made.
With the field downsized to 40 cars and only 39 cars entered, five pit stalls (33,41,42,43,44) have been eliminated, are not in play and don't count towards driving through more than three pit boxes.
Pole sitter #42-Larson chose pit stall 1, the first stall available [as do most pole sitters].
Outside pole sitter #11-Hamlin, Jr. took pit stall 2, right behind #42-Larson.
#2-Keslowski, who starts 3rd, took stall 12A, the next with an opening in front of it
The final pit stall (stall 40) was taken by #78-Truex Jr., who starts 4th.
To see where the drivers/teams pit stall is, see the pit selection chart the Pit Stall Selection chart.(3-25-2017)

Johnson working on contract extension: #48-Jimmie Johnson was asked about the status of his contract during his media availability on Friday at Auto Club Speedway. "We are always talking and working on the details. We don't have anything ready yet, but I'm sure we will announce before long."[More](3-25-2017)

Kurt Busch files countersuit against agent: Kurt Busch has filed a countersuit against former agent Jon Caponigro, whose firm sued Busch for $1.4 million for unpaid and future fees after Busch terminated the deal last year. Busch, in a court filing Friday, said he had paid Caponigro's firm $1.3 million since 2011 and is asking to be awarded "millions" in damages.[More](3-25-2017)

Larson wins Auto Club XFINITY race: #42-Kyle Larson won the Service King 300 at Auto Club Speedway. It is his sixth XFINITY Series win and first of the year. Pole-sitter #22-Joey Logano finished second after leading a race-high 70 laps, followed by #18-Kyle Busch, #20-Erik Jones, #9-William Byron, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #1-Elliott Sadler, #48-Brennan Poole, #7-Justin Allgaier, and #3-Ty Dillon.
There were seven cautions for 43 laps and 18 lead changes among 6 leaders.
The average speed was 116.883 mph.
Complete results are on the Auto Club race results page (pdf). (3-25-2017)
Race stage winners:
Stage 1 - lap 35 - #18-Kyle Busch
Stage 2 - lap 70 - #18-Kyle Busch
Stage 3 - lap 150 - #42-Kyle Larson

Auto Club XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
Kyle Larson(i) won the 19th Annual Service King 300, his sixth victory in 94 NASCAR XFINITY Series
races.
This is his first victory and third top-10 finish in 2017.
This is his second victory and fifth top-10 finish in five races at Auto Club Speedway.
Joey Logano(i) (second) posted his ninth top-10 finish in nine races at Auto Club Speedway. It is his
second top-10 finish in 2017.
Kyle Busch(i) (third) posted his 15th top-10 finish in 18 races at Auto Club Speedway.
William Byron (fifth) was the highest finishing rookie.
Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 17 points over William Byron #.
(NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(3-25-2017)

XFINITY Driver standings following Auto Club:
1) #1-Elliott Sadler, 189
2) #9-William Byron, 172, -17
3) #7-Justin Allgaier, 143, -46
4) #16-Ryan Reed, 143, -46
5) #6-Darrell Wallace Jr., 140, -49
6) #48-Brennan Poole, 133, -56
7) #21-Daniel Hemric, 131, -58
8) #5-Michael Annett, 113, -76
9) #19-Matt Tifft, 111, -78
10) #11-Blake Koch, 106, -83
See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(3-25-2017)

Logano on XFINITY pole at Auto Club: #22-Joey Logano won the Coors Light pole for the Service King 300 at Auto Club Speedway with a speed of 182.556mph. #21-Daniel Hemric will start second. The rest of the top 10: #20-Erik Jones, #00-Cole Custer, #2-Paul Menard, #9-William Byron, #42-Kyle Larson, #33-Brandon Jones, #3-Ty Dillon, and #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr.
Did Not Qualify: none.
The starting lineup is posted on the Auto Club starting lineup page (pdf).(3-25-2017)

Auto Club XFINITY Qualifying Notes:
Joey Logano(i) won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 19th Annual Service King 300 with a lap of
39.440 seconds, 182.556 mph.
This is his 32nd pole in 161 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
This is his first pole and second top-10 start in 2017.
This is his fourth pole in nine races at Auto Club Speedway.
Daniel Hemric (second) posted his fourth top-10 start of 2017 and his first at Auto Club Speedway.
Erik Jones(i) (third) posted his third top-10 start at Auto Club Speedway. It is his second in three races
this season.
Daniel Hemric (second) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
(NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(3-25-2017)

Bristol to treat track surface again: The track applied the treatment last year to the lower groove in the four turns and coming out of the straightaways to help rubber stick to the track.[More](3-25-2017)

Dover to 'Light It Up Blue' for Autism Awareness Month: Dover Downs Hotel & Casino and Dover International Speedway will continue their support for increasing understanding and acceptance of autism by participating in the global "Light It Up Blue" campaign, organized by Autism Speaks, in April. Two of Delaware's most famous landmarks, the Monster Monument at Victory Plaza presented by Smithfield, as well as the Dover Downs Hotel, will be illuminated in blue light throughout April, coinciding with Autism Awareness Month.[More](3-25-2017)


News from March 24, 2017

Trying to shed bridesmaid role, points leader Kyle Larson wins pole at Fontana: The driver who has finished second in the last three Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races will start first on Sunday. Moving up the track for his final run, series points leader Kyle Larson navigated rough, bumpy Auto Club (Fontana, California) Speedway in 38.493 seconds (187.047 mph) on Friday to win the pole for Sunday's Auto Club 400 (3:30 p.m. ET on FOX), the fifth race of the season. The 24-year-old Larson edged Denny Hamlin by .014 seconds, as Hamlin covered the two-mile distance at 186.979 mph. The Coors Light Pole Award was Larson's first at Auto Club, first of the season and second of his career.[More](3-24-2017)

Larson wins Auto Club pole: #42-Kyle Larson won the Coors Light pole for the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway with speed of 187.047mph for his 1st pole of 2017, 1st at Auto Club and 2nd of his career.
#11-Hamln will start 2nd followed by #2-Keselowski, #78-Truex, Jr., #31-Newman, #20-Kenseth, #4-Harvick, #1-McMurray, #18-Busch, #19-Suarez, #3-Dillon, and #5-Kahne.
#48-Johnson did not make a qualifying attempt after the team went to a backup car following an incident in practice. He will start the race in 37th.
#11-Hamlin was fastest in the second round with a speed of 186.921mph, will start 2nd
#4-Harvick was fastest in the first round with a speed of 188.260mph, will start 7th
Driver(s) who will miss the race: none as 39 were entered for 40 spots
See round-by-round qualifying results on the Auto Club qualifying results page (pdf) and the complete starting lineup on the Auto Club Starting Lineup page (pdf).(3-24-2017)

  • Second Round of Qualifying for the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway is over, after 10 scheduled minutes.
    #11-Hamlin 186.921
    #4-Harvick 186.775
    #20-Kenseth 186.674
    #1-McMurray 186.393
    #18-Busch 186.200
    the rest of the top 12: 42 19 78 2 3 5 31
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to round 3: 24 77 41 17 14 88 21 37 13 10 27 47
    (3-24-2017)

    First Round of Qualifying for the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway is over, after 20 scheduled minutes.
    #4-Harvick 188.260
    #2-Keselowski 187.237
    #18-Busch 187.076
    #42-Larson 186.766
    #11-Hamlin 186.761
    the rest of the top 24: 20 31 78 5 1 88 14 41 19 10 24 17 13 3 37 21 27 47 77;
    out of the top 24 and not advancing to round 2: 95 34 38 15 83 43 55 51 33 23 48 6 22 72 32.
    Drivers who will miss the race: none, 39 entered
    (3-24-2017)

    Friday practice for the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway is over, after 85 minutes, the top-five and notes:
    #42-Larson 189.071
    #11-Hamlin 188.462
    #4-Harvick 188.344
    #1-McMurray 187.940
    #22-Logano 187.588
    slowest: #33-Earnhardt 171.895 & #51-Hill 170.446
    most laps run: #1-McMurray, #22-Logano, and #14-Bowyer (18 laps)
    Just 2 drivers ran 10 consecutive laps during this practice: #42-Larson and #1-McMurray
    There was a short red flag during practice when an owl landed on the track and had to be moved away.
    #48-Johnson spun in turn 4 with just over 20 minutes remaining in practice. The car slide down the track and ran the nose into the grass. The team will go to a backup car.
    See fastest speeds, laps run on the Auto Club Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf)(3-24-2017)

    Austin Dillon warned by NASCAR in meeting with Custer: #3-Austin Dillon indicated that a repeat offense of wrecking another car under caution would result in NASCAR suspending him. Dillon, after a meeting with NASCAR officials Friday at Auto Club Speedway a week following his running into Cole Custer under caution, said: "NASCAR did a really good job of sharing with me that if I make a mistake like that again that the penalties would be very harsh. ... I love to race and I don't want to be on the sideline, ever."[More](3-24-2017)

    Aspen Dental becomes 'Official Dentist of NASCAR.': NASCAR and Aspen Dental, one of the largest and fastest-growing networks of independent dental care providers in the United States, announced a multi-year official partnership, designating the brand as the 'Official Dentist of NASCAR.' The announcement coincides with the launch of Aspen Dental's 'Get Started' awareness building health initiative with NASCAR and Stewart-Haas Racing driver Danica Patrick.[More](3-24-2017)

    Southern California Chevy Dealers sponsoring Whitt: Joining Whitt this weekend, Southern California Chevy Dealers, the largest Chevy inventory provider in the Southern California area, will serve as the primary sponsor of the #72. Hoping to have the same luck this year in Fontana, Whitt is ready to tighten the belts and score a solid finish at Auto Club Speedway.[More](3-24-2017)

    Sport Clips sponsoring Hamlin in California: For the first of three races with Hamlin during the 2017 season, Sport Clips will serve as the primary sponsor this weekend at Auto Club Speedway on the #11 Toyota Camry in the Cup Series. Sport Clips will also be on the #11 Camry at Darlington Raceway in September, as well as the #18 Toyota Camry in the NASCAR XFINITY Series at Darlington Raceway in September.[More](3-24-2017)

    Interstate Batteries making first appearance on the #18: Kyle Busch will pilot the colors of Interstate Batteries at Fontana for the first of six Cup Series races this season. The founding partner of JGR, Interstate Batteries has been powering the championship-winning organization for more than 25 years and is the "Official Battery of Joe Gibbs Racing." This year, the iconic brand is celebrating its 65th anniversary. To commemorate the milestone, special 65th anniversary branding will be featured in each of the paint schemes JGR will race during the 2017 NASCAR season.[More](3-24-2017)

    OneLegacy/Donate Life California teams up with Gase: Joey Gase and Jimmy Means Racing are excited to announce their partnership with OneLegacy and Donate Life California. Both OneLegacy and Donate Life California's logos will adorn the hood of the #52 Chevy driven by Gase for this weekend in Fontana to promote organ, eye, and tissue donation.[More](3-24-2017)

    Logano paces final XFINITY practice: #22-Joey Logano was quickest in final practice at Auto Club Speedway with a speed of 176.804mph.
    #20-Erik Jones was second, followed by: #2-Paul Menard, #33-Brandon Jones, #42-Kyle Larson, #19-Matt Tifft, #9-William Byron, #3-Ty Dillon, #11-Blake Koch, and #18-Kyle Busch.
    37 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Auto Club final practice speeds page (pdf).(3-24-2017)

    Logano fastest in first XFINITY practice: #22-Joey Logano was fastest during opening practice at Auto Club Speedway with a speed of 178.904mph.
    The rest of the top 10: #42-Kyle Larson, #20-Erik Jones, #2-Paul Menard, #00-ColeCuster, #1-Elliott Sadler, #3-Ty Dillon, #18-Kyle Busch, #11-Blake Koch, and #21-Daniel Hemric.
    37 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Auto Club practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(3-24-2017)

    'Cars 3' Road to the Races tour visits Texas Motor Speedway: Disney*Pixar's "Cars 3" opens its Road To The Races nationwide tour today that will include a stop at Texas Motor Speedway on April 7-9 for the O'Reilly Auto Parts 500 NASCAR doubleheader weekend. The 27-city, nationwide tour features life-size, character look-alikes of five-time Piston Cup champion Lightning McQueen, tech-savvy trainer Cruz Ramirez and the sleek next-gen racer Jackson Storm to celebrate the new "Cars 3" movie, which opens June 16.[More](3-24-2017)


    News from March 23, 2017

    Furniture Row Racing hauler involved in highway accident en route to Auto Club Speedway: The two drivers of Furniture Row Racing's No. 77 team hauler were uninjured when their tractor-trailer rig was involved in a hit-and-run accident just after midnight Thursday on their way to this week's NASCAR Cup Series event at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.[More](3-23-2017)

    Special Fastenal scheme for Stenhouse, Jr at Auto Club Speedway: In celebration of Fastenal's 50th Anniversary, the #17 Ford, driven by two-time champion Ricky Stenhouse Jr., will feature a commemorative look at Auto Club Speedway this week. In celebration of Fastenal's 50th Anniversary, the #17 Ford, driven by Ricky Stenhouse Jr., will feature a commemorative look at Auto Club Speedway. Image from Roush Fenway Racing. Roush Fenway Racing Still headquartered in Winona, MN, Fastenal now employs nearly 20,000 people worldwide. The names of those employees will be featured on the #17 Fastenal Ford Fusion along with a special 50th Anniversary logo for the Auto Club 400 on March 26th, 2017.[More](3-23-2017)

    2017 Kulwicki Driver Development Program competitors announced: Officials of the Kulwicki Driver Development Program (KDDP) announced the seven drivers who will represent the organization during the 2017 racing season. The 2017 season will mark the third fully-functioning year for the KDDP, which was established in 2014 by the family of late NASCAR Champion Alan Kulwicki for the purpose of helping worthy drivers toward reaching their dreams while at the same time keeping Alan's memory and legacy alive.[More](3-23-2017)

    Jimmie Johnson & NASA team up for race day at Richmond International Raceway: Jimmie Johnson is teaming up with NASA and Richmond International Raceway to give NASCAR's youngest fans the opportunity to learn the science behind the sport as well as meet the seven-time NASCAR Cup Champion prior to the TOYOTA OWNERS 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday, April 30. The Jimmie Johnson Ticket Package gives kids the chance to see not only their favorite driver, but also learn about the role STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) has in NASCAR. Kids will learn how the science of speed plays a role in both NASCAR and the launch of rockets into space.[More](3-23-2017)

    Stewart-Haas to appeal Harvick penalty: Officials with Team Penske have not determined if the organization will appeal penalties handed down to the #2 team and driver Brad Keselowski on Wednesday, according to a statement from the team. Stewart-Haas Racing, meanwhile, announced it would appeal the penalty for the # 4 team of Kevin Harvick.[More](3-23-2017)

    Premium Motorsports & Reed Sorenson welcome 'VIPRacingExperience.com': Premium Motorsports & Reed Sorenson are on the last leg of NASCAR's west coast swing as they head to Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. They left Phoenix International Raceway with a 31st place finish in Sunday's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series "Camping World 500". Looking ahead to this weekend, the team welcomes 'VIPRacingExperience.com' which will serve as the primary sponsor on Sorenson's #15 Toyota for the upcoming 'Auto Club 400'.[More](2-23-2017)

    Erik Jones heads to Auto Club Speedway after career best finish: The Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate and team take that shared experience this week to Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., after a series' career-best eighth-place showing March 19 at Phoenix Raceway. The Furniture Row Racing #77 Toyota Camry will sport a Toyota Service Centers paint scheme this weekend.[More](3-23-2017)

    Twisted Tea debuts on the #13 at Auto Club Speedway: This weekend, the #13 Chevrolet SS features primary sponsorship for the first of three races from Twisted Tea, major associate branding from GEICO and showcases associate sponsorship relationships.[More](3-23-2017)

    Rick Ware Racing to sport BUBBA burger colors at Auto Club Speedway: On the heels of their best performance of the 2017 season last weekend at Phoenix (Ariz.) Raceway, veteran driver Timmy Hill returns to the driving duties of the #51 BUBBA burger Chevrolet looking for another fulfilling and stuffing finish at the 2.0-mile oval.[More](3-23-2017)

    Mears back in California for first 2017 XFINITY race: After announcing in February that he would run 12 NASCAR Xfinity Series races in the #98 GEICO Military Ford Mustang for Biagi-DenBeste Racing, the time has come for Casey Mears to hit the track. His first race of the 2017 season is this weekend in Fontana, CA, and the Bakersfield native will make his first laps in his new ride when the first practice session gets underway at 3:30 PM (ET) on Friday. [More](3-23-2017)

    XFINITY to run restrictor plates at Indianapolis UPDATE: NBC Sports has confirmed that NASCAR will use restrictor plates for the Xfinity race July 22 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The decision, which initially was reported by freelance journalist Michael Knight on Twitter last weekend, will take effect after NASCAR was pleased by the results of a successful Xfinity test with plates last year at the 2.5-mile track.(3-20-2017)
    UPDATE: Teams competing in the NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway later this year will do so with a race package that incorporates three major modifications aimed at one goal -- improved competition at the legendary 2.5-mile speedway. Designed specifically for the 100-lap race scheduled for July 22, the modifications consist of a taller rear spoiler and splitter package; aero ducts on the lower front bumper area; and a 7/8th-inch restrictor plate currently used for superspeedway events at Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway. [More](3-23-2017)

    youtheory returns to sponsor LaJoie at Auto Club Speedway: JGL Racing and Corey LaJoie are proud to announce that youtheory has returned to sponsor the duo once again in the 2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series season. The program kicks off this weekend as LaJoie will pilot the #24 youtheory Toyota in the March 25th running of the Service King 300 at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. In addition to this weekend at Auto Club Speedway, youtheory will also adorn the #24 Toyota for JGL Racing at events at Dover International Speedway (September 30), Charlotte Motor Speedway (October 6), Phoenix International Raceway (November 11) and Homestead-Miami Speedway (November 18).[More](3-23-2017)

    Auto Club Speedway Fan Zone packed with weekend entertainment: This weekend, NASCAR makes its only stop in Southern California for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Auto Club 400 race weekend, March 23-26, at Auto Club Speedway. While fans are here to watch five-wide racing, they will also have access to the O'Reilly Auto Parts Fan Zone for driver appearances, a dozen music performances, autograph sessions, Lefty's Fun Zone, motocross exhibits and other family fun.[More](3-23-2017)

    Chase University College Program Arrives at Richmond International Raceway: Richmond International Raceway and Chase Elliott have partnered to bring a unique race day experience to college students called Chase University, or better known as Chase U. For $24, current college students can enjoy a ticket to the TOYOTA OWNERS 400 NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday, April 30 with an exclusive college pre-race party and an appearance by the driver of the No. 24 himself, Chase Elliott.[More](3-23-2017)

    Advanced pricing on Martinsville Speedway tickets ends Friday: With the STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway just a week-and-a-half away, there is no better time to purchase tickets, as prices increase on Saturday. The race marks the first short track race of the year, and the first race back on the east coast after the "west coast swing."[More](3-23-2017)


    News from March 22, 2017

    Phoenix post-race penalties: The #2 team of Brad Keselowski has be assessed an L1 penalty following Phoenix Raceway. Crew chief (Paul Wolfe) has been fined $65,000 and suspended from the next three Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series points events. Team has been assessed with the loss of 35 driver and 35 team owner points. The penalty was assessed for violation of: Sections 20.17.3.1.2 Post-Race General Inspection Measurements. Note: Race finish is encumbered per Section 12.10 Encumbered Race Finishes. Failed the post-race rear wheel steer on the LIS.
    In addition, the #4 team of Kevin Harvick has been assessed an L1 penalty for violation of: Sections 20.3.3.3 I-4 Track Bar Mount and Supports Note: Race finish is encumbered per Section 12.10 Encumbered Race Finishes. Track bar slider assembly not approved. Crew chief (Rodney Childers) has been fined $25,000 and suspended from the next Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series points event. Team has been assessed with the loss of 10 driver and 10 team owner points.(NASCAR)(3-22-2017)

    #47 team to appeal penalty UPDATE: ESPN's Bob Pockrass tweeted that JTG Daugherty Racing would appeal the points part of the penalty assessed the team last week for loose/missing lugnuts.[More](3-16-2017)
    UPDATE: The National Motorsports Appeals Panel upheld penalties against the #47 JTG Daugherty Racing team that competes in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series following a hearing Wednesday at NASCAR's Research & Development Center in Concord, N.C.[More](3-22-2017)

    Subway sponsoring Suarez at Auto Club Speedway: In addition to making his first-career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start at Auto Club Speedway, Suárez will have a new sponsor on board the #19 Camry. Subway will make their first of four MENCS appearances this weekend with a brand new paint scheme that will hit the track on Friday morning. [More](3-22-2017)

    Special scheme for McDowell at Auto Club Speedway: Michael McDowell and Leavine Family Racing (LFR) are excited to unveil a special paint scheme for the Auto Club 400, as the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) finishes out the West Coast swing of the 2017 season. Coming off their third Top-25 finish of the 2017 MENCS season, LFR is thrilled to showcase the #95 Woodie Wagon Surfboards by LFR Chevrolet SS at Auto Club Speedway this weekend. [More](3-22-2017)

    Earnhardt set to make 600th start Sunday: This weekend, Dale Earnhardt Jr. will reach a milestone in his NASCAR Cup Series career. Sunday in Fontana, California, he will make his 600th Cup start. To mark the occasion, a decal commemorating Earnhardt's 600 starts will be placed on the B-posts and the front of the hood of the No. 88 Axalta Chevrolet SS this weekend.[More](3-22-2017)

    Anheuser-Busch concerned with condensed race weekend schedules: Sports Business Journal reports the company is pushing back on a two-day race weekend because of the conflicts the schedule creates with B2B opportunites for hospitality.[More](DATE-2017)

    Dusenberry Martin Racing rebranded as 704 Games: Dusenberry Martin Racing announced its rebranding to 704Games. The company also announced the appointment of racing industry veteran Paul Brooks as CEO to oversee the transition to 704Games. Brooks spent 19 years with NASCAR in various leadership roles including senior vice president of NASCAR and president of NASCAR Media Group.[More](3-22-2017)

    Tony Stewart returning to Winged sprint car race: There's something special about racing in Indiana during the month of May and, for motorsports icon and Indiana native Tony Stewart, having at least one night of racing back home on his 2017 schedule was a must. Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing (TSR) announced today that Stewart will be part of the field for the May 19 Arctic Cat All-Stars (ASCoC) presented Ford Performance event at Kokomo (Indiana) Speedway.[More](3-22-2017)

    Sad News - Pete Hamilton Pete Hamilton, the winner of the 1970 Daytona 500, has passed away at the age of 74. Hamilton started 64 Cup races between 1968 and 1973, winning four times -- twice at Daytona and twice at Talladega.[More](3-22-2017)

    Service King named title sponsor of XFINITY race at Auto Club Speedway: Service King Collision Repair Centers will serve as the title sponsor for Auto Club Speedway's NASCAR XFINITY Series 300 race on Saturday, March 25. The event, which will air on FS1 at 1PM (PT), will be known as the Service King 300.[More](3-22-2017)

    Youtheory named Official Health Supplement of Auto Club Speedway: youtheory, the leader in natural health products, has been named the official health supplement of Auto Club Speedway for the second straight year during the Monster Energy NASCAR C[More](3-22-2017)

    Advance Auto Parts named Official Auto Parts Retailer of Charlotte Motor Speedway: Advance Auto Parts, Inc., a leading automotive aftermarket provider that serves both professional installer and do-it-yourself customers, has expanded its motorsports footprint by being named the Official Auto Parts Retailer of Charlotte Motor Speedway, zMAX Dragway and The Dirt Track at Charlotte. The nationally renowned company has a multi-year agreement with the speedway that will include Advance Auto Parts in-store speedway branding, digital and social media promotions and on-site ticket sales for select race events.[More](3-22-2017)


    News from March 21, 2017

    Rush Truck Centers sponsoring Bowyer at Auto Club Speedway: Sunday marks Bowyer's first appearance driving his #14 Ford carrying the decals of Rush Truck Centers. The Texas-based company is using its partnership with SHR and Bowyer to reach out to NASCAR fans as one way to recruit the technicians it needs to operate the largest network of commercial truck and bus dealerships in the country, with locations in 21 states.[More](3-21-2017)

    NASCAR Checks-In to Hotels for Hope: NASCAR announced today a multi-year partnership with Hotels for Hope designating the company as the "Official Hotel Booking Partner of NASCAR." Hotels for Hope, a hotel inventory brokerage with a philanthropic business model, services large scale consumer events across the country and will now include NASCAR race weekends.[More](3-21-2017)

    Kyle Busch selling 'Everything is great' shirts for charity: On Friday at Phoenix International Raceway before practice was set to begin, #18-Kyle Busch stepped out of the NASCAR transporter after NASCAR had met with Busch and Joey Logano. Busch was determined to avoid making any meaningful comments to reporters about the incident with Logano at Las Vegas the weekend before or the meeting. And a catchphrase was born. To five straight questions, Busch answered with some variation of the following: "Everything's great. Looking forward to getting back to the race track and back in my race car." So on Monday, March 20th, a day after finishing 3rd in the Camping World 500 at PIR, Busch tweeted he is selling T-Shirts that say "Everything Is Great", proceeds go to the Kyle Busch Foundation.[More](3-21-2017)

    Phoenix TV Ratings NASCAR Cup Series racing from Phoenix earned a 3.0 overnight rating on FOX Sunday afternoon, down 17% from last year (3.6), down 21% from 2015 (3.8) and the lowest overnight in the 12-year history of the race (dates back to 2005). The previous low was a 3.3 in 2009, when it was still held on a Saturday night.(Sports Media Watch)[More](3-21-2017)

    Quin Houff to make XFINITY Series debut with Precision Performance Motorsports: ARCA Racing Series driver Quin Houff will make his NASCAR XFINITY Series debut at Bristol Motor Speedway in the Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 on Saturday, April 22nd with Precision Performance Motorsports (PPM). Houff will combine this effort with a start at Richmond International Raceway in the ToyotaCare 250 on Saturday, April 29th, both behind the wheel of the No. 46 Chevrolet Camaro.[More](3-21-2017)

    NASCAR Fan Settles Suit Over Daytona Crash Debris Injury A lawsuit by a NASCAR fan injured by flying debris from a 12-car crash at Daytona International Speedway came to an end Monday as a Florida federal judge issued a final dismissal of the case following a settlement reached last month. U.S. District Judge Gregory A. Presnell dismissed Allen Davis' case against NASCAR, the speedway and speedway owner International Speedway Corp. with prejudice on Monday, putting an end to the over-year-old case concerning the 2013 crash.(Law360)(3-21-2017)

    Johnson to be inducted into ACS Walk of Fame Jimmie Johnson, winner of the 2016 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Auto Club 400, will be inducted into the Speedway's Walk of Fame in Friday, March, 24.(ACS)[More](3-21-2017)

    Latin singer Pepe Aguilar will serve as Honorary Starter for Auto Club 400 Latin singer Pepe Aguilar will serve as Honorary Starter for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Auto Club 400 race at Auto Club Speedway on Sunday, March 26. As Honorary Starter, Aguilar will wave the green flag to start the Auto Club 400, and watch the stock cars take their first lap on one of the oldest oval track surfaces and the fastest tracks on the NASCAR circuit.(ACS)[More](3-21-2017)


    News from March 20, 2017

    Entry List for the Auto Club 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway is posted, 39 teams/drivers [for 40 spots] are listed.
    36 teams with Charters are guaranteed to make the field. The rest need to make the field via qualifying / qualifying races / rules book (owners attempts/points).
    Some of the drivers entered include: #15-Sorenson, #23-Gaulding, #33-JEarnhardt, #51-Hill*, #55-Cope*, #83-LaJoie*
    Drivers who currently to not drive for a team with a Charter and need to race into the field: #51-Hill*, #55-Cope*, #83-LaJoie*.
    Drivers who would miss the race if qualifying is canceled (least race attempts): none
    Since only 39 cars are entered, all drivers will make the race.
    See the full entry list on the Entry List (pdf)

    Austin Dillon will face no further penalties for XFINITY race incident UPDATE Austin Dillon will not face additional penalties today for deliberately wrecking Cole Custer in Saturday's DC Solar 200 NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Phoenix Raceway. NASCAR parked Dillon for the remainder of Saturday's race, but a NASCAR representative confirmed to FOXSports.com that Dillon will not face additional sanctions today.(FOXSports.com)[More](3-19-2017)
    UPDATE NASCAR plans to meet with Austin Dillon and Cole Custer this weekend at Auto Club Speedway after their incident in Saturday's Xfinity race at Phoenix Raceway. Steve O'Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, said Monday on "The Morning Drive" that officials parked Dillon after his actions in the Xfinity race and met with Dillon, his crew chief and spotter.(NBC Sports)[More](3-20-2017)

    Keselowski's #2 Ford fails post race inspection at Phoenix Brad Keselowski's #2 Team Penske Ford team could face penalties this week after his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series ride failed post-race inspection at Phoenix Raceway on Sunday night. The #2 failed weights and measures after Keselowski piloted it to a fifth-place finish. No other cars failed post-race tech inspection.(NASCAR)[More](3-20-2017)

    Phoenix Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 2017 Camping World 500 For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday's race. Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 3:30 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 6:49 PM (all times are EDT). Did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. Fox was the broadcast team for this event.(CawsnJaws.com)[More](3-20-2017)

    Sunday Phoenix Notebook Erik Jones' #77 Furniture Row Racing team did everything right in Sunday's Camping World 500 at Phoenix International Raceway-except for predicting how many cars would take two tires versus four on the final pit stop before overtime. Jones was running fifth when a melted bead caused Joey Logano's right front tire to explode and sent the #22 Ford of the polesitter into the Turn 1 wall on Lap 307 of a scheduled 312. Jones took four tires under the ensuing caution and restarted 14th. He was able to regain six positions in the two-lap overtime that took the race to Lap 314, but for the third straight week, Jones finished lower than where he had run for much of a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race. The eighth-place finish nevertheless was the first top-10 of Jones' fledgling Monster Energy Series career. Jones was one of two Sunoco rookies to get a maiden top 10 on Sunday. Fellow Toyota driver Daniel Suarez finished seventh, gaining five positions after the final restart.
    Though Ricky Stenhouse Jr. didn't win Sunday's Camping World 500 at Phoenix by staying out on old tires-as Ryan Newman did-the driver of the #17 Roush Fenway Racing Ford did hold onto fourth place during a two-lap overtime. That Stenhouse was able to score his eighth career top five is emblematic of improved performance at Roush Fenway Racing, but Stenhouse says there's still work to do.
    Joey Logano started Sunday's Camping World 500 from the pole and led 82 laps, but his race ended suddenly and dramatically when his right front tire blew as the #22 Ford approached Turn 1 on Lap 307 of a scheduled 312. Logano's misfortune stalled a promising run by Kyle Busch-his adversary from a week ago at Las Vegas-and gave Ryan Newman's crew chief, Luke Lambert, the opportunity to make the strategic call that won the race.(NASCAR Wire Service)[More](3-20-2017)

    XFINITY Entry List: There are 42 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday's XFINITY 300 at Auto Club Speedway.
    See the complete list on the Auto Club entry list page. (3-20-2017)

    XFINITY to run restrictor plates at Indianapolis: NBC Sports has confirmed that NASCAR will use restrictor plates for the Xfinity race July 22 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The decision, which initially was reported by freelance journalist Michael Knight on Twitter last weekend, will take effect after NASCAR was pleased by the results of a successful Xfinity test with plates last year at the 2.5-mile track. [More](3-20-2017)

    April possible date for future spring NASCAR PIR race The nearly $180 million facility redevelopment project at Phoenix International Raceway might not be the only big change eventually coming to the Avondale track. Preliminary discussions have taken place between PIR and NASCAR about moving the track's spring weekend to April from the mid-march March date it's had since 2015. Nothing is likely to happen for next year, but there's little doubt PIR would eventually love to reclaim the mid-April Saturday evening date it enjoyed from 2005-10.(Arizona Republic)[More](3-20-2017)

    Las Vegas Motor Speedway considers eliminating seats for NASCAR races The bloody gash on Kyle Busch's forehead wasn't the only cut at Las Vegas Motor Speedway last week. The track appears poised to ax more seats that were largely empty at the Kobalt 400, and TV ratings for the March 12 NASCAR race were down 17 percent. What, if anything, does it mean for the viability of a second NASCAR race in Las Vegas? The Kobalt 400 produced a late pass for the lead and a pit road fight pitting hometown hero Busch against Joey Logano and members of Logano's pit crew. It seemed to be the shot in the rocker arm LVMS was seeking. It was announced March 8 that Las Vegas also will host a fall playoff race starting in 2018. LVMS President Chris Powell said he was "thrilled" with the early demand for tickets. But fans who sought to renew seats in Sections 1 and 3 - the lower grandstands fronting the Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt Terraces - were told they could not purchase them for 2018. "We are not prepared to sell tickets in those areas," Powell said. Does that mean Sections 1 and 3 will be eliminated? "A final decision hasn't been made." A 2018 seating chart on the speedway's website shows the lower grandstands in front of the terraces grayed out. If the sections in front of the terraces are eliminated, it would trim LVMS capacity to around 80,000.(Las Vegas Review-Journal)[More](3-20-2017)


    News from March 19, 2017

    Newman wins at Phoenix: #31-Ryan Newman won the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway for his 1st win of the season, 2nd win at Phoenix, his first for Richard Childress Racing and 18th career win. Newman's last win was at Indianapolis in July 2013.
    #42-Larson finished second (for the 4th time in the last five races) followed by #18-Busch, $17-Stenhouse Jr., #2-Keselowski, #4-Harvick, #19-Suarez(career best), #77-Jones(career best), #48-Johnson and $11-Hamlin.
    Pole winner, #22-Logano, led 82 laps but had a pit road speeding penalty mid-way in the race and then with 6 laps to go in the race had a tire explode and hit the wall, finishing 31st.
    #18-Kyle Busch led the most laps at 114 and had a commanding lead with 6 laps to go before Logano hit the wall and brought out the caution.
    There were 14 lead changes among 8 drivers and 8 cautions for 45 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 104.271mph.
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs: Sunday, March 19 at 10:00pm/et on FS1; Monday, March 20 at 6:30am/et on FS1; Monday, March 20 at 9:30am/et on FS2
    See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and more at:
    Unofficial Race Results page (pdf)
    Penalty Report (pdf).
    Cumulative Report (pdf).
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(3-19-2017)

    Race recap: Newman wins at Phoenix; Larson 2nd...again When the winner of Sunday's Camping World 500 was announced, officials might have thought for a moment that they got the wrong envelope, a la Warren Beatty at the Oscars. But, no, there was no mistake. Ryan Newman was the unexpected winner of the fourth Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race of the season after a late caution gave his #31 Richard Childress Racing team the chance to break a drought dating to 2013. Staying out on old tires for a two-lap overtime run at Phoenix International Raceway, Newman pulled away when eventual fourth-place finisher Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (who stayed out during the final caution) and runner-up Kyle Larson (who pitted for two tires) got together in the first corner after the final restart on Lap 313. Newman's 18th career victory was his second at Phoenix but his first since he won the Brickyard 400 on July 28, 2013, driving for Stewart-Haas Racing. The win was RCR's first since Kevin Harvick took the checkered flag on Nov. 10, 2013 at Phoenix before departing for Stewart-Haas the following year.[More](3-19-2017)

    Phoenix winning driver, Ryan Newman's comments
    Q) IN THE DESERT, THE DROUGHT COMES TO AN END FOR RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING AND RYAN NEWMAN. HOW GOOD DOES IT FEEL TO BE BACK HERE IN VICTORY LANE?
    Newman: "I've lost count; that's how long it's been. I've got to thank Grainger, Caterpillar, Coca-Cola, Monster Energy, for supporting our series, and Chevrolet. The list goes on and on. What a gutsy call by (crew chief) Luke (Lambert). I called for two tires and he called for none. I've won more races no tires than I have with four. I'm just proud of these guys. We had a good car all day. We kept it out of trouble and collected in the end."
    Q) A COUPLE OF YEARS AGO YOU USED UP KYLE LARSON TO MAKE THE CHASE. WERE YOU THINKING ABOUT THAT AT ALL AS HE WAS CHASING YOU DOWN?
    Newman: "Trust me, I went into (Turn) 3 looking at my mirror. I knew he was down there; but it took my car forever to get going. I'm spent, man. I had the chills on lap 150. I'm done."(Team Chevy)(3-19-2017)

    Race Fast Facts - Phoenix:
    #31-Ryan Newman won the 13th Annual Camping World 500, his 18th victory in 552 NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series races.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in 2017.
    With the victory, Newman ends a 127 race winlless drought. His last win came at Indianapolis in 2013.
    This is his second victory and 12th top-10 finish in 30 races at Phoenix Raceway.
    With the victory, Richard Childress Racing ends a 112 race winless drought. Its last win came at Phoenix in November of 2013 (Kevin Harvick).
    #42-Kyle Larson (second) posted his third top-10 finish in seven races at Phoenix Raceway. It is his third top-10 finish in 2017.
    #18-Kyle Busch (third) posted his 16th top-10 finish in 24 races at Phoenix Raceway.
    #19-Daniel Suarez (seventh) was the highest finishing rookie.
    #42-Kyle Larson leads the point standings by 6 points over #2-Brad Keselowski.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(3-19-2017)

    Top-Ten Stage 2 Results (lap 150) of the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway (lap 150/312):
    #24-Elliott, 10pts
    #42-Larson, 9pts
    #18-Busch, 8pts
    #48-Johnson, 7pts
    #2-Keselowski, 6pts
    #1-McMurray, 5pts
    #77-Jones, 4pts
    #21-Blaney, 3pts
    #11-Hamlin, 2pts
    #4-Harvick, 1pt

    Top-Ten Stage 1 Results (lap 75) of the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway (lap 75/312):
    #22-Logano, 10pts
    #42-Larson, 9pts
    #2-Keselowski, 8pts
    #24-Elliott, 7pts
    #1-McMurray, 6pts
    #18-Busch, 5pts
    #21-Blaney, 4pts
    #48-Johnson, 3pts
    #31-Newman, 2pts
    #88-Earnhardt Jr., 1pt

    2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Driver Chase Standings:
    [after Phoenix, race 4 of 36]
    1) #42-Kyle Larson, 184
    2) #2-Keselowski [1 win], 178, -6
    3) #24-Chase Elliott, 171, -13
    4) #78-Martin Truex Jr [1 win], 153, -31
    5) #22-Joey Logano, 135, -49
    6) #21-Ryan Blaney, 127, -57
    7) #4-Kevin Harvick, 123, -61
    8) #1-Jamie McMurray, 119, -65
    9) #41-Kurt Busch [1 win], 105, -79
    10) #5-Kasey Kahne, 105, -79
    11) #31-Ryan Newman [1 win], 101, -83
    12) #6-Trevor Bayne, 100, -84
    13) #18-Kyle Busch, 97, -87
    14) #11-Denny Hamlin, 97, -87
    15) #14-Clint Bowyer, 97, -87
    16) #48-Jimmie Johnson, 93, -91
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and
    Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf)
    See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).

    Lucky Dogs - Who got a lap back on each caution at Phoenix: (and their finish)
    Caution 1: #23-Gaulding, 36th
    Caution 2: #32-DiBenedetto, 29th
    Caution 3: #32-DiBenedetto(2), 29th
    Caution 4: #15-Sorenson, 30th
    Caution 5: #15-Sorenson(2), 30th
    Caution 6: #41-Busch, 25th
    Caution 7: #37-Buescher, 27th
    Caution 8: #47-Allmendinger, 26th
    (3-19-2017)

    Phoenix Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Pre-Race Schedule for Sunday, March 19: (eastern time)
    1:30pm: Driver/Crew Chief Meeting
    3:00pm: Driver Introductions
    3:30pm: Intro Presentation of Colors: Luke Air Force Base Color Guard
    3:30:20pm: Invocation by PIR Chaplain, Ken Bowers
    3:31pm: National Anthem: Dr. Jessie McGuire
    3:32:30pm: Flyover by two F-35's, 62nd Fighter Squadron, Luke Air Force Base
    3:37:30pm: Command to Start Engines: Tamara Ward, Chief Marketing Officer for Camping World
    3:44:30pm: Scheduled Green Flag - Camping World 500
    eastern time (NASCAR.com)

    Austin Dillon racing a Dow World Water Day at Phoenix Austin Dillon is racing a Dow World Water Day scheme on the #3 Richard Childress Racing Chevy in the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway in March. WorldWaterDay is about the Importance of Water for Everyone ... Whether it is fishing, boating, hunting or just being outside and enjoying the beauty of a mountain lake, a forest stream or an ocean view, Austin and the #3 team love the outdoors. Being able to share this precious natural resource with their families, friends and future generations is important to them. It is why they want to raise awareness of water's importance in all aspects of life through the United Nation's World Water Day. Austin is proud to drive the #3 Dow World Water Day Chevrolet and partner with Dow, whose Water & Process Solutions business specializes in sustainable liquid purification and separation technologies, and which plays a significant role in helping show the relationship and interaction between water, wastewater and sustainability.(RCR & Tucson News Now)[More](3-19-2017)

    Austin Dillon will face no further penalties for XFINITY race incident Austin Dillon will not face additional penalties today for deliberately wrecking Cole Custer in Saturday's DC Solar 200 NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Phoenix Raceway. NASCAR parked Dillon for the remainder of Saturday's race, but a NASCAR representative confirmed to FOXSports.com that Dillon will not face additional sanctions today.(FOXSports.com)[More](3-19-2017)

    Jeffrey Earnhardt gets sponsor for Phoenix: Niceride Niceride, a clothing brand, will be the sponsor of the #33 Circle Sport/TMG Chevy for the Camping World 500 at Phoenix International Raceway. What is Niceride? NICERIDE has set out to promote a lifestyle that emphasizes Family, Friends, and FUN. Those three elements are what NICERIDE is all about.(@CSTMG3330)[More](3-19-2017)

    Saturday Phoenix Notebook Kyle Larson can't imagine getting angry enough to take a swing at another driver-because of the potential consequences.
    Naturally enough, the fisticuffs between Kyle Busch, Joey Logano and their crew members made for animated conversation at Phoenix International Raceway -- site of Sunday's Camping World 500 -- where the chief combatants were summoned to a Friday morning your-attendance-is-requited meeting in the NASCAR transporter. After Logano's Ford collided with Busch's Toyota on the final lap last Sunday at Las Vegas, Busch launched an overhand right at Logano on pit road and the melee followed. Larson, on the other hand, can't see himself in a similar situation. Most sources list Larson as 5-foot-6, 130 pounds, but both those numbers may be generous. "Look at how big I am," Larson said with a chuckle. "I can't do that. Joey has got probably about two feet longer reach on me, too. No, but, I'm not the fighting type. I don't think I've ever been mad enough that I have ever wanted to punch somebody, mainly probably because I'm scared that I am the one that is going to get beat up.
    Denny Hamlin got "screwed" during the first round of Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series qualifying. No, another competitor didn't impede Hamlin's progress on his run. Crew chief Mike Wheeler described what happened in a tweet on Friday night. "Ran over a screw in Q1, came in 15 psi lower," Wheeler posted about the cut tire that resulted. "NASCAR no longer allows changes. Tried to pump up for Q2, but didn't work. Bummer. #startinglast" During the offseason, NASCAR instituted a rule requiring drivers to start the race on their qualifying tires, and tires may be changed only in the case of a factory defect. With the pumped-up tire, Hamlin nevertheless qualified 19th. Though he'll have to start from the back of the field in Sunday's Camping World 500 because of the tire change, he will retain the pit stall he earned with the 19th pick.(NASCAR Wire Service)[More](3-19-2017)

    Phoenix Raceway offers fans first look at new hospitality experience At the first race of 2017 season, fans able to take a test drive for what's to come in 2018
    As Phoenix Raceway welcomes racing fans for the first time in 2017, the anticipation is growing for the track's modernization project. To harness the excitement during the Camping World 500 weekend, a New Phoenix Raceway Preview Center is giving fans an up-close-and-personal view of what's to come for the Phoenix Raceway Project Powered by DC Solar. Located on the DC Solar Power Pavilion (formerly Fan Midway) right along Turn 1, the New Phoenix Raceway Preview Center tells the story of what fans can expect once the project is completed in time for the fall NASCAR race in November 2018.(PhoenixRaceway.com)[More])(3-19-2017)


    News from March 18, 2017

    Edwards says he has no plans to return to racing The Phoenix Raceway garage was buzzing this weekend with rumors that Carl Edwards would be back racing in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series garage next year, but Edwards says he has no plans to return. Edwards announced in January that he would leave Joe Gibbs Racing to pursue interests outside of racing. In a text exchange Saturday afternoon with FoxSports Tom Jensen, Edwards wrote, "Like I said at the press conference, I had no racing plans then and do not now. There is no hidden agenda - those three reasons are it."(FoxSports)[More](3-18-2017)

    Happy Hour (final) practice for the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway is over, after 50 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
    #22-Logano 134.736
    #20-Kenseth 134.519
    #18-Busch 134.399
    #2-Keselowski 134.384
    #48-Johnson 134.368
    slowest: #51-Hill 127.592 & #33-JEarnhardt 128.650
    no laps run: #55-Cope
    best 10 consecutive lap ave (of 32 cars) #18-Busch 134.094
    notes: #17-Stenhouse Jr. smacked the wall but continued with practice. #19-Suarez spun in turn 2, but didn't hit anything and came back to practice a bit later
    See the fastest speeds, best 10 consecutive lap average, laps run on the Phoenix Happy Hour Practice speeds page (pdf) (3-18-2017)

    1st Saturday practice for the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway is over, after 55 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
    #24-Elliott 135.977
    #22-Logano 135.466
    #42-Larson 135.323
    #78-Truex Jr. 135.206
    #2-Keselowski 135.171
    slowest: #51-Ware 128.778 & #33-JEarnhardt 129.334
    best 10 consecutive lap ave (of 27 drivers) #78-Truex Jr. 134.525
    most laps ran: four with 43 laps: 88, 11, 31, 47
    notes: #17-Stenhouse Jr. smacked the wall when he had brake issues, but the car was fixed and continued to practice
    See the fastest speeds, best 10 consecutive lap average, laps run on the Phoenix practice speeds page (pdf) (3-18-2017)

    Have Kyle Busch and Joey Logano buried the hatchet? Sporting dark sunglasses, Kyle Busch stepped out of the NASCAR transporter determined to do his best impression of former Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch, who scrupulously avoided making meaningful comments to reporters. To five straight questions, Busch answered with some variation of the following: "Everything's great. Looking forward to getting back to the race track and back in my race car." Everything wasn't so great for Busch last Sunday in Las Vegas, when, during a battle for third place, Joey Logano's Ford slid up the track into Busch's Toyota on the last lap of the Kobalt 400. Busch spun toward the inside wall and eventually finished 22nd. Logano saved his car and came home fourth, only to have Busch launch a haymaker in his direction on pit road. When Logano's crew members jumped into the fray to protect their driver, Busch was taken to the pavement and wound up with a bloody cut to his forehead. That's why NASCAR summoned both Busch and Logano to the hauler on Friday morning at Phoenix International Raceway.(NASCAR Wire Service)
    AND Busch spoke to a pair of reporters (including Jeff Gluck) on pit road after his qualifying lap, telling us why he punched Logano last week and adding he still didn't buy Logano's explanation. When Busch tried to make a move down the backstretch and avoid a slowing Brad Keselowski on the last lap, he made contact with Logano. He felt Logano then took revenge right away. "It was instantaneous," Busch said. "I made a move down the backstretch that cut Joey off - and I had to; I wasn't just going to roll out of the gas and fall in behind Brad and probably lose spots to more guys behind me. So I made a bold move - I was two-thirds of my way past Logano, and I figured I can wedge my way through there a little bit. And I did, and it was instantaneous retaliation. That's what I thought and that's kind of what I still think." Logano presented Busch with data during their meeting with NASCAR that he felt proved the incident was unintentional, but Busch didn't believe it. "No," Busch said after being asked whether the data changed his mind. "Nope."(JeffGluck.com)[More](3-18-2017)

    Roush sees retirement ahead Jack Roush, one of NASCAR's most successful owners and a pioneer in bringing engineering technology into the sport with his multi-car Ford teams, has used the "R" word. Retire. "I expected to have better years than (winless) 2016 and 2015," Roush said to azcentral sports in advance of Sunday's Camping World 500 at Phoenix International Raceway. "Had I realized I had those years in front of me, I might have decided to side-step, and retire. I'm 74. I can't do what I'm doing today for another 10 years. My window is, the longest I've been able to predict what I was going to do in life, has been five years. I'm probably down to a three-year window. I'm looking at how I can be useful."(Arizona Republic)[More](3-17-2017)
    UPDATE Not so, Roush told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Friday.
    "I have no retirement plans whatever," Roush said. "The article came from an ill-advised stream of consciousness I had at the end of last season." He then said: "People retire in order to go do things they're passionate about. I already have a job that allows me to be passionate beyond my imagination as a youngster." Roush turns 75 on April 19.(NBC Sports)(3-18-2017)

    Career best start for Blaney: Ryan Blaney and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team turned in another strong qualifying performance on Friday at the Phoenix International Raceway as Blaney posted a career-high second-place effort to complete an all-Ford front row for the start of Sunday's Camping World 500k. Just a week after qualifying third at Las Vegas, Blaney took the second spot at Phoenix, which was the best starting spot for the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team since Trevor Bayne started on the outside pole at Daytona International Speedway in July, 2011. "We sat down, my team and I, and tried to figure out what we need and what is more important, going from round to round, and what really helps our car," Blaney said. "The last two weekends we have shown really good speed in qualifying trim. It is nice to have fast race cars. You have seen it the past two weeks."(Wood Brothers Racing)(3-18-2017)

    Race recap: Justin Allgaier perseveres to win NASCAR XFINITY race in Phoenix: Justin Allgaier popped a tire during his celebratory burnout after Saturday's DC Solar 200 at Phoenix International Raceway. But you can forgive the driver of the No. 7 JR Motorsports Chevrolet if he was a trifle rusty with his donuts-Allgaier hadn't been to Victory Lane in the NASCAR XFINITY Series since August in 2012 at the road course in Montreal. On a blistering afternoon that brought emotions to a boil at the one-mile race track in the Sonoran Desert, Allgaier sailed away with a magnificent restart with four laps left and finished .741 seconds ahead of runner-up Ryan Blaney, who started 33rd after inspection issues kept him off the grid during qualifying earlier in the day.[More](3-18-2017)

    Justin Allgaier wins Phoenix XFINITY race: #7-Justin Allgaier won the DC Solar 200 at Phoenix International Raceway. It is his 4th XFINITY Series win and 1st of the year and qualifies him for the NASCAR XFINITY Series playoffs. In addition, he won the $100,000 Dash 4 Cash bonus.
    #22-Ryan Blaney finished second, followed by #20-Erik Jones, polesitter #9-William Byron, #1-Elliott Sadler, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #21-Daniel Hemric, #48-Brennan Poole, #5-Michael Annett, and #3-Ty Dillon.
    #9-William Byron and #1-Elliott Sadler qualified for the Dash 4 Cash in the first stage. #7-Justin Allgaier and #42-Tyler Reddick qualified during the second Stage.
    #20-Erik Jones won Stage 1 of the race. #22-Ryan Blaney won Stage 2.
    There was a brief red flag for track cleanup with 9 laps remaining.
    There were 10 cautions for 55 laps and 15 lead changes among 7 leaders.
    The average speed was 91.013mph.
    Complete results are on the Phoenix race results page (pdf).(3-18-2017)

    Race stage winners:
    Stage 1 - lap 45 - #20-Erik Jones
    Stage 2 - lap 90 - #22-Ryan Blaney
    Stage 3 - lap 200 - #7-Justin Allgaier

    Phoenix XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Justin Allgaier won the 13th Annual DC Solar 200, his fourth victory in 211 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first victory and second top-10 finish in 2017.
    This is his first victory and ninth top-10 finish in 14 races at Phoenix Raceway.
    Ryan Blaney (second) posted his second top-10 finish in two races at Phoenix Raceway. It is his first top-10 finish in 2017.
    Erik Jones (third) posted his sixth top-10 finish in six races at Phoenix Raceway.
    William Byron (fourth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 11 points over William Byron.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(3-18-2017)

    XFINITY Driver standings following Phoenix:
    1) #1-Elliott Sadler, 144
    2) #9-William Byron, 133, -11
    3) #16-Ryan Reed, 121, -23
    4) #7-Justin Allgaier, 115, -29
    5) #6-Darrell Wallace Jr., 109, -35
    6) #21-Daniel Hemric, 104, -40
    7) #48-Brennan Poole, 98, -46
    8) #19-Matt Tifft, 91, -53
    9) #5-Michael Annett, 89, -55
    10) #28-Dakoda Armstrong, 84, -60
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(3-18-2017)


    News from March 17, 2017

    Logano wins Phoenix pole: #22-Joey Logano won the Coors Light pole for the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway with speed of 137.321mph for his 1st pole of 2017, 1st at Phoenix and 18th of his career. Logano has won three races from the pole.
    #21-Blaney will start 2nd followed by #88-Earnhardt Jr. #42-Larson, #1-McMurray, #2-Keselowski, #24-Elliott, #77-Jones, #18-Busch, #5-Kahne, #41-Busch and #20-Kenseth.
    #22-Logano was fastest in the second round with a speed of 137.065mph, will start 1st
    #42-Larson was fastest in the first round with a speed of 136.695mph, will start 4th
    Driver(s) who will miss the race: none as 39 were entered for 40 spots
    See round-by-round qualifying results on the Las Vegas qualifying results page (pdf) and the complete starting lineup on the Phoenix Starting Lineup page (pdf).(3-17-2017)

    Joey Logano edges Ryan Blaney for pole position at Phoenix Apparently unfazed by last week's controversy at Las Vegas, Joey Logano put his No. 22 Team Penske Ford on the pole for Sunday's Camping World 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International raceway. In winning his first Coors Light Pole Award of the season, his first at Phoenix and the 18th of his career, Logano saved his best lap for the third and decisive round, streaking around the one-mile track in the Sonoran Desert in 26.216 seconds (137.321 mph). Ryan Blaney (136.877 mph) was second fastest in the money round in his No. 21 Wood Brothers Ford, posting the best qualifying effort of his young career in Friday's time trials.

    "I woke up this morning thinking about my race car, and how we could end up sitting here (as the pole winner) at the end of the day," said Logano, whose day at the track started with a meeting with NASCAR officials and Kyle Busch after last Sunday's last-lap collision between the drivers spilled over into a fistfight on pit road. In between, do I have to think about other things? Yeah, obviously, we had a meeting today. There's a lot of, I guess, distractions that we don't typically have. So it's a matter of managing those distractions and keeping your head back in the right spot for when it's game time."

    Dale Earnhardt Jr. qualified third and was on top of the board late in the third round until Blaney and Logano bettered his speed of 136.783 mph. Kyle Larson claimed the fourth starting spot, followed by Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Jamie McMurray. A major point of emphasis for Blaney during the offseason was qualifying, which the driver felt wasn't as strong as it needed to be. Last week Blaney was third in Las Vegas time trials. On Friday, he was one spot better. "The last two weekends, we've shown really good speed in qualifying trim," Blaney said. "It's nice to have fast race cars. You've seen it the past two weeks. Our Wood Brothers car and the Penske group have been fast in qualifying trim. That's something to be proud of as the two organizations work well together. We just needed a little more to get there, but we were close."

    Notes: The pole was the second straight for Team Penske, with Brad Keselowski having secured the top starting spot at Las Vegas. Keselowski will roll off sixth on Sunday. ... Kevin Harvick's mastery of Phoenix didn't extend to Friday's qualifying session. The eight-time Phoenix winner will start 23rd after posting his worst qualifying effort since the fall race of 2011.(NASCAR Wire Service)(3-17-2017)

    Phoenix International Raceway - Qualifying Fast Facts:
    #22-Joey Logano won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 13th Annual Camping World 500 with a lap of 26.216 seconds, 137.321 mph.
    This is his 18th pole in 295 NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series races.
    This is his first pole and third top-10 start in 2017.
    This is his first pole in 17 races at Phoenix Raceway.
    #21-Ryan Blaney (second) posted his second top-10 start of 2017 and his second in three races at Phoenix Raceway.
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. (third) posted his seventh top-10 start at Phoenix Raceway. It is his second in four races this season.
    #77-Erik Jones (eighth) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(3-17-2016)

    Second Round of Qualifying for the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway is over, after 10 scheduled minutes.
    #22-Logano 137.065
    #21-Blaney 136.731
    #24-Elliott 136.565
    #1-McMurray 136.297
    #88-Earnhardt Jr. 136.199
    the rest of the top 12: 77 42 41 5 2 18
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to round 3: 14 48 13 78 3 27 11 47 17 31 4 6
    (3-17-2017)

    First Round of Qualifying for the Camping World 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway is over, after 20 scheduled minutes.
    #42-Larson 136.695
    #1-McMurray 136.467
    #21-Blaney 1353731
    #22-Logano 135.583
    #88-Earnhardt Jr 135.542
    the rest of the top 24: 31 2 24 4 48 17 11 5 20 78 41 27 3 18 47 6 77 13 14
    out of the top 24 and not advancing to round 2: 95 10 19 43 34 32 83 72 37 38 15 23 55 33 51
    Drivers who will miss the race: none, 39 entered
    (3-17-2017)

    Phoenix Stats and Notes - ESPN Kevin Harvick has been dominant at Phoenix recently. Although he didn't win there last November, he has won 5 of the last 7 races at the track and has led a huge chunk of laps. #42-Kyle Larson has finished in the top 3 in 4 of his last 5 races, a streak that started at Phoenix last November. Despite having not won a race or a stage this season, Larson is 2nd in points, 1 point behind #2-Brad Keselowski. Larson has finished every stage in the top 10, except for the final stage in the Daytona 500 (12th).[More](3-17-2017)

    Axalta makes first 2017 appearance on the #88 Phoenix marks the first of 13 races where Axalta Coating Systems will be the primary sponsor for Earnhardt's #88 Chevy. The new "Flash Point" paint scheme, designed by artist Sam Bass, will make its on-track debut this weekend. The #88 Axalta Chevy incorporates bright, neon yellow and red colors to create an eye-catching paint scheme.(Hendrick Motorsports)[More](3-17-2017)

    Great Clips makes 2017 #5 sponsor debut at Phoenix Kasey Kahne will pilot the #5 Great Clips Chevy this weekend at Phoenix International Raceway. The event marks the first of 10 races in which the longtime Hendrick Motorsports partner will adorn the #5 car as its primary sponsor this season.(Hendrick Motorsports)[More](3-17-2017)

    Standard Plumbing Supply to sponsor Whitt at Phoenix TriStar Motorsports announced Standard Plumbing Supply as the primary sponsor of the #72 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series entry with driver Cole Whitt for this weekend's race at Phoenix International Raceway. With over 80 stores servicing many western states, Standard Plumbing Supply provides wholesale residential and commercial plumbing, heating and cooling, irrigation and hydronics products to contractors.(TriStar Motorsports)[More](3-17-2017)

    Roush sees retirement ahead Jack Roush, one of NASCAR's most successful owners and a pioneer in bringing engineering technology into the sport with his multi-car Ford teams, has used the "R" word. Retire. "I expected to have better years than (winless) 2016 and 2015," Roush said to azcentral sports in advance of Sunday's Camping World 500 at Phoenix International Raceway. "Had I realized I had those years in front of me, I might have decided to side-step, and retire. I'm 74. I can't do what I'm doing today for another 10 years. My window is, the longest I've been able to predict what I was going to do in life, has been five years. I'm probably down to a three-year window. I'm looking at how I can be useful."(Arizona Republic)[More](3-17-2017)

    Fry's featured on the #47 at Phoenix ClickList: "We're continuing to tell people about how easy ClickList is to use," Allmendinger said. "You sign up, you order your groceries online and then you go pick them up when ready. I've tried it out myself and it so convenient. If I can do it, anyone can do it."
    Phoenix International Raceway: "Phoenix is a flat track, but the corners are different," Allmendinger said. "Turns 1 and 2 are definitely different than when you go through 3 and 4. It's a tough racetrack that's for sure.(JTG Daugherty Racing)[More]

    Cast of movie "Car Dogs" to be honorary race officials at Phoenix The NASCAR Camping World 500 race weekend at Phoenix Raceway is all about fast cars and the state of Arizona. It seems only appropriate that six members from the cast of the upcoming movie "Car Dogs" will be on hand this weekend to serve as honorary race officials for Sunday's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Camping World 500, which starts at 12:30pm/et. The movie, which is scheduled to be released in select theaters on March 24, 2017, has many Arizona ties. Not only is the movie set in Scottsdale, but it also was shot there. The movie was written by Scottsdale native Mark King, while the director, Adam Collis, is currently a visiting professor of film at Arizona State University in Tempe. King and Collis will be two of the six who will take part in Sunday's race festivities. The others are cast members Josh Hopkins, Dash Mihok, Alessandra Torresani and Chris Mulkey. The film also stars comedian superstar George Lopez, Oscar nominee Nia Vardalos ("My Big Fat Greek Wedding") and TV star Patrick J. Adams ("Suits").(PhoenixRaceway.com)[More](3-17-2017)

    Brickyard 400 changes weekend schedule An exciting new schedule, race format and fan activities will deliver more NASCAR action and thrills than ever to the Brickyard 400 race weekend July 21-23 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. All on-track action for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will take place over a condensed two-day schedule, Saturday, July 22 and Sunday, July 23. Practice and qualifying are set for Saturday, with the 24th annual Brickyard 400 at 3 p.m. (ET) Sunday. A full schedule of speed Saturday also will include qualifying and the race for the NASCAR XFINITY Series event, with the 250-mile race starting at 3:30 p.m. The event weekend will start Friday, July 21 on the 2.5-mile oval with two practice sessions for the NASCAR XFINITY Series. An engaging, new Friday Fan Fest featuring stars of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and the popular Hauler Parade that afternoon and evening will complete the opening day of race weekend at IMS.(Indianapolis Motor Speedway)[More](3-17-2017)

    Gaughan paces final XFINITY practice: #62-Brendan Gaughan was quickest in final practice at Phoenix International Raceway with a speed of 131.152mph.
    #22-Ryan Blaney was second, followed by: #9-William Byron, #19-Matt Tifft, #28-Dakoda Armstrong, #11-Blake Koch, #7-Justin Allgaier, #18-Daniel Suarez, #1-Elliott Sadler, and #20-Erik Jones .
    37 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Phoenix final practice speeds page (pdf).(3-17-2017)

    Ryan Blaney leads second XFINITY practice: #22-Ryan Blaney was fastest in the second XFINITY practice at Phoenix International Raceway at 131.277mph.
    The rest of the top 10: #20-Erik Jones, #9-William Byron, #18-Daniel Suarez, #19-Matt Tifft, #1-Elliott Sadler, #7-Justin Allgaier, #5-Michael Annett, #21-Daniel Hemric, and #2-Austin Dillon.
    37 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Phoenix second practice speeds page (pdf).(3-17-2017)

    Erik Jones fastest in first XFINITY practice: #20-Erik Jones was fastest during opening practice at Phoenix International Raceway with a speed of 131.521mph.
    The rest of the top 10: #22-Ryan Blaney, #9-William Byron, #33-Brandon Jones, #7-Justin Allgaier, #11-Blake Koch, #18-Daniel Suarez, #00-Cole Custer, #5-Michael Annett, and #28-Dakoda Armstrong.
    Just 31 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Phoenix practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(3-17-2017)

    TMC Transportation teams up with JR Motorsports in 2017: JR Motorsports announced a multi-race partnership with TMC Transportation, the nation's largest employee-owned open deck transportation company, on board the team's #5 entry driven by Michael Annett. The #5 team will carry TMC Transportation branding in multiple NASCAR Xfinity Series events this season, beginning at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.[More](3-17-2017)

    Globe Life and Accident sponsoring Wallace in two races: Roush Fenway Racing announces Globe Life And Accident Insurance Company has signed on to partner with NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) driver Bubba Wallace for the 2017 season. The partnership will see Globe Life serve as an associate for two races, beginning this week at Phoenix International Raceway and Texas Motor Speedway, and as the primary partner on Wallace's #6 Ford Mustang at back-to-back races at Talladega Superspeedway and Charlotte Motor Speedway in May.[More](3-17-2017)

    Alex Labbe expects to run some XFINITY races for Go FAS: After getting his feet wet last year in the XFINITY Series, Alex Labbe is set to return to the second-tier of NASCAR once again in 2017. Labbe stated at the Motorama Custom Car and Motorsports Expo that he would be running three to four XFINITY Series races this season with Go FAS Racing.[More](3-17-2017)


    News from March 16, 2017

    Las Vegas TV Ratings In ratings delayed by the winter storm in the Northeast, Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series racing from Las Vegas scored a 3.58 final rating and 5.973 million viewers on FOX Sunday [3/12/2017].(Show Buzz Daily)[More](3-16-2017)

    JTG Daugherty to appeal penalty ESPN's Bob Pockrass tweeted that JTG Daugherty Racing would appeal the points part of the penalty assessed the team last week for loose/missing lugnuts [More](3-16-2017)

    Ford Performance boss believes Edwards to return Carl Edwards stunned the NASCAR community when he announced an unscheduled sabbatical last January. But no one, including the top brass at Ford Performance--that's right, Ford--would be surprised if Edwards' return to racing was just as swift and abrupt as his departure. Ford Performance boss Dave Pericak anticipates a return by Edwards. "I don't know what Carl's future looks like," Pericak said. "We've had no conversations about that at all. I can tell you that, honestly. I personally believe that Carl's coming back. That's just a Dave Pericak thought, but I have no idea what's going on with him. No conversations, but you'll see Carl Edwards in the sport again. That's my two-cents worth."
    Since Edwards' departure, the rumor mill has run wild with speculation. Will he replace Danica Patrick in the #10 car next year? How about bumping Kasey Kahne from the #5 team? Will Team Penske start a third team for Edwards? Could he replace Matt Kenseth following his former teammate's retirement tour?(Motorsport)[More](3-16-2017)

    SunFrog hops on board with BK Racing and Gaulding on Race Hub on Fox Sports 1, BK Racing and Gray Gaulding unveiled the #23 SunFrog Toyota Camry that will race this weekend at Phoenix International Raceway. SunFrog, one of the nation's fastest growing apparel printing companies, will be joining the #23 Toyota team for multiple Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races this year, starting with Sunday's Camping World 500.(BK Racing)[More](3-16-2017)

    Phoenix Raceway Fan Guide Phoenix Raceway is encouraging fans to come out early and enjoy the full NASCAR experience during the Camping World 500 event weekend, March 17-19. In addition to the Camping World 500 on Sunday, March 19 at 12:30 p.m. (local), the race weekend at Phoenix Raceway will include the DC Solar 200 NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, March 18 at 1:30 p.m. and Gatorade Pole Day on Friday, March 17 featuring Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Qualifying.
    FAN ACTIVITIES & GUIDELINES A NASCAR weekend at Phoenix Raceway is an experience like no other. Expect exciting racing on the track and a fun party atmosphere throughout the raceway. Whether it be a die-hard fan cheering on their favorite driver or a first-time fan catching NASCAR fever, Phoenix Raceway is the place for race day excitement and entertainment. Fans can expect to have a great time while taking part in the interactive displays on the DC Solar Power Pavilion (formerly Fan Midway) or experiencing great live entertainment on one of the many stages.
    A full list of fan guidelines, including when to arrive, what to expect, recommended attire, what fans can or cannot bring and a full list of activities scheduled throughout race weekend is available by visiting www.PhoenixRaceway.com and selecting the "Visiting PIR" tab at the top of the homepage and browsing to the "PIR 101: Raceday FAQ's" page.
    Tickets to all events throughout Camping World 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series weekend at Phoenix Raceway are available online at PhoenixRaceway.com, by phone at 1-866-408-RACE (7223) or in person at the Phoenix Raceway ticket office.(PR)[More](3-16-2017)

    AmeriCarna returns tonight with Earnhardt Jr. & Ray Evernham AmeriCarna epidsode, "Two Juniors and the El Laguna", Thursday, March 16 at 9 pm on Velocity. Dale Earnhardt Jr. wants Ray Evernham to help restore an El Camino, except add on a Laguna front end. It's not a typical restoration, but it's certainly a NASCAR performance-worthy restoration.(Victory Management Group PR)[More](3-16-2017)

    BodyArmor Sports Drink welcomes Ryan Blaney to the team BodyArmor, a new premium sports drink, announced a partnership with rising star NASCAR driver, #21-Ryan Blaney. This partnership marks BodyArmor's first foray into the world of motorsports, where proper hydration plays a crucial role in driver performance. Blaney will be instrumental in helping to raise awareness for the fast-growing sports drink nationwide. As part of the partnership, Blaney will appear in in-store and external advertising campaigns, be featured in digital and social media activations, appear at local events and help to generate awareness for the brand throughout the country. Through an alliance between the Wood Brothers [#21 Motorcraft Ford] - NASCAR's longest tenured team - and Team Penske - one of the most successful teams in the history of professional sports - Blaney competes full-time in the NASCAR Cup Series and in select NASCAR Xfinity Series events.(RyanBlaney.com)[More](3-16-2017)


    News from March 15, 2017

    Statistical Advance: Analyzing the Camping World 500 A look at some of the top statistical performers at Phoenix Raceway going into the Camping World 500 on March 19.
    Top 10 Active Driver Ratings at Phoenix
    #48-Jimmie Johnson........................ 111.2
    #4-Kevin Harvick........................... 110.7
    #24-Chase Elliott............................. 103.9
    #18-Kyle Busch................................. 98.4
    #41-Kurt Busch................................. 98.3
    #11-Denny Hamlin............................. 95.6
    #2-Brad Keselowski......................... 92.4
    #22-Joey Logano............................... 92.4
    #20-Matt Kenseth.............................. 89.0
    #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr....................... 88.7
    Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2016 races (24 total) among active drivers at Phoenix Raceway. See the full analysis here (3-15-2017)

    Logano discusses Kyle Busch incident #22-Joey Logano, who was involved in a post-race confrontation with former teammate #18-Kyle Busch Sunday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, joined NASCAR RACE HUB Tuesday on FS1 to discuss the incident. Logano's appearance alongside NASCAR RACE HUB co-hosts Adam Alexander and Shannon Spake was part of his regular duties as an analyst on the one-hour program. See excerpts from Logano's comments regarding the events that unfolded on and off the track with Busch here (FoxSports)(3-15-2017)

    Kennington hopes to run more Cup races The Daytona 500 didn't go as D.J. Kennington planned with getting caught up in one of the big wrecks, but it was an experience he's going to remember forever. It's also opened the door for possibly running more races this season in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series for #96 Gaunt Brothers Racing. Beyond plans in NASCAR's premiere division, there's also a possibility of seeing him back at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park in the truck race for the second straight year. He mentions "there are irons in the fire," but the "main goal will be focused on Gaunt Brothers Racing and our own stuff in the Pinty's Series."(Popular Speed)[More](3-15-2017)

    No penalties for Logano-Busch incident NASCAR released the Post-Event Penalty Report for Las Vegas Motor Speedway. There were no penalties for #18-Kyle Busch or #22-Joey Logano, who were involved in a pit road scuffle after the Kobalt Tools 400 at LVMS. Two crew chiefs were fined $10,000 for lug nuts (one lug nut) not properly installed: #13 Germain Racing crew chief Robert "Bootie" Barker and #78 Furniture Row Racing crew chief Cole Pearn.(NASCAR)[More](3-15-2017)

    Matt Mills joins B.J. McLeod Motorsports at Phoenix Raceway: Officials from B.J. McLeod Motorsports (BJMM) announced that Lynchburg, Va., native Matt Mills will make his NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) debut in Saturday afternoon's DC Solar 200 at Phoenix (Ariz.) Raceway. Mills will drive the #8 Thompson Electric, Inc. Chevrolet under the watchful eye of veteran crew chief Keith Wolfe. [More](3-15-2017)

    NASCAR XFINITY Series' Dash 4 Cash program returns at Phoenix: With great anticipation, the NASCAR XFINITY Series welcomes the return of the Dash 4 Cash program in 2017. This time around a few things will be different, a new lineup of tracks will host the program along with a slight format change to align itself with the new enhanced stage racing format. Phoenix Raceway is the first of four tracks that will host the Dash 4 Cash program in 2017. Bristol Motor Speedway (4/22), Richmond International Raceway (4/29) [More](3-15-2017)


    News from March 14, 2017

    Facebook's Zuckerberg Hot-Laps Charlotte with Dale Jr. Mark Zuckerberg is no stranger to innovation, but the CEO of Facebook tested the limits on something entirely new on Tuesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Zuckerberg joined Hendrick Motorsports driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. for a high-speed ride around the iconic 1.5-mile superspeedway before climbing behind the wheel of a NASCAR Racing Experience stock car. Zuckerberg's trip to Charlotte Motor Speedway is part of a year-long challenge that involves visiting every U.S. state and meeting with people to learn more from communities and help Facebook continue to positively influence the world. Zuckerberg's 800-horsepower adrenaline rush followed an earlier tour of the nearby Hendrick Motorsports facility and a meeting with Charlotte Motor Speedway President and General Manager Marcus Smith (CMS)[More](3-14-2017)

    Harvick to Host "Happy Hours" on SiriusXM SiriusXM announced that 2014 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Champion Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing and one of the sport's most popular drivers, will host a new exclusive show on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, available to listeners nationwide on satellite radios and the SiriusXM app. Happy Hours will debut on March 28 and air every Tuesday from 7 to 9 pm ET, featuring Harvick's distinctive perspective on his sport and life outside the track. Harvick and co-host Matt Yocum will take calls from listeners and give NASCAR fans a unique view on the driver's life and interests when he is away from the race car. In June, the show will begin airing every other week.(Kevin Harvick)[More](3-14-2017)

    Ford Performance Q&A Session with Rodney Childers Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John's Ford Fusion, has had great success at Phoenix International Raceway, having won eight times in his career. He's been most dominant over the last five years, having won six of the last nine Monster Energy Cup Series races at the facility, including four straight at one point. Crew chief Rodney Childers spoke about the team's two-day organizational test session at PIR last month, and his hopes for this weekend.(Ford)[More](3-14-2017)

    Grainger Extends Partnership with Richard Childress Racing After a successful launch in 2014, Richard Childress Racing (RCR) and Grainger have renewed their partnership for multiple years. The leading broad line supplier of maintenance, repair and operating (MRO) products unveiled to customers, suppliers and team members attending this year's Grainger Show in Orlando, Fla., the new look of the #31 Grainger Chevy driven by Ryan Newman in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.

    Grainger's NASCAR campaign launches this weekend with their primary paint scheme at Phoenix Raceway for the Camping World 500 on March 19 as well as its associate presence on the #31 Chevy for all Cup Series events when not the primary partner. Grainger is scheduled to be the primary sponsor in five races: Phoenix in March, Bristol in April, Charlotte in May, New Hampshire in July and Michigan in August.
    In addition, Grainger continues to build upon a strong digital and social content platform by releasing videos on the new paint scheme and "Ryan Newman: Born Behind the Wheel". More content is in the works to further enhance and grow across multiple mediums throughout the year.(Richard Childress Racing)[More](3-14-2017)

    Mars, Inc. comments on Kyle Busch's fight with Logano: A day after Kyle Busch started a fight with Joey Logano that involved both team's crew members following the NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Busch's primary sponsor expressed it was "disappointed" in his actions.[More](3-14-2017)

    Starkey Hearing Foundation sponsoring Cassill at Phoenix: Starkey Hearing Foundation is excited to announce that they are teaming up with Front Row Motorsports and NASCAR driver Landon Cassill to #RaceforChange on March 19 at Phoenix International Raceway for the Camping World 500.[More](3-14-2017)

    Mediation set for case filed against Tony Stewart: Glenn Norton has been appointed mediator in the case involving the late Kevin Ward Jr., and Tony Stewart. The mediation session is scheduled for April 18 in St. Louis, Missouri.[More](3-14-2017)

    Ty Majeski to make XFINITY debut at Iowa UPDATE: The NASCAR season started last week. For Ty Majeski it won't for another couple of months yet. His Xfinity Series debut is set for June 24 at Iowa Speedway(3-2-2017)
    UPDATE: Regarded as one of the most talented up-and-coming drivers in motorsports, Roush Fenway Racing developmental driver Ty Majeski will make his NASCAR debut in the NASCAR XFINITY Series race on June 24 at Iowa Speedway. Majeski boasts ARCA Midwest Tour Championships in 2014, 2015 and 2016 and was one of 11 drivers named to the NASCAR Next 2016-17 class. iRacing.com, the world's premier online racing game/simulation, will serve as the primary partner on Majeski's Ford for the race.[More](3-14-2017)

    Sieg picks up Phoenix sponsor: RSS Racing and driver Ryan Sieg are excited to welcome Tap and Sons Electric as the primary sponsor on their #39 Chevrolet Camaro for the NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Phoenix International Raceway. The team will also welcome #5 Specialty Coatings and Antrim Air as major associate sponsors for the 200 lap race. Midstate Basement and Baseball Racks will also join the team as associates. [More](3-14-2017)

    Reser's renews sponsorship with Joe Gibbs Racing: Entering their fifth season with Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) and second with Erik Jones, Reser's Fine Foods returns to the #20 Toyota Camry in the NASCAR XFINITY Series as the primary sponsor for eight races this season starting this weekend at Phoenix International Raceway.[More](3-14-2017)

    Gase to honor Dante Pérez at Phoenix: NASCAR Xfinity Series driver Joey Gase, Olympic gold medalist and UFC flyweight, Henry Cejudo, will join Donor Network of Arizona (DNA) and other jujitsu competitors to honor Dante Pérez, a jujitsu instructor who saved four lives and healed dozens more through his gifts of organ and tissue donation. Dante Pérez, 24, became a jujitsu instructor to help at-risk youth stay out of trouble. Known for his kind spirit, Dante always looked for ways to make a positive impact in his hometown of Sierra Vista, Arizona. Beloved by his students, he was their role model. However, Dante was taken too soon from his loved ones when he succumbed to injuries he suffered in a car accident in November 2016.[More](3-14-2017)

    Phoenix Raceway partners with Chick-fil-A: The cows are coming to Phoenix Raceway - Chick-fil-A and Phoenix Raceway launched a partnership that will have race fans seeing spots throughout the Camping World 500 NASCAR race weekend on March 17-19. Fans won't miss the famous Chick-fil-A cow on the restaurant's hot air balloon located behind Turn 2 of the one-mile oval. The partnership with the restaurants of the Phoenix region also brings Chick-fil-A's famous cows to the race track where fans can see them at their display on the DC Solar Power Pavilion.[More](3-14-2017)

    New parking upgrades at Talladega: Fans who want an up-close, ultra-convenient day parking spot which will allow them a shorter, quicker entry to the grandstands for Talladega Superspeedway's Sparks Energy 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series and GEICO 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series events, May 6-7, now have a great opportunity with the track's new Parking Upgrade options. The upgrades, which consists of "Preferred" and "VIP Experience" lots, are located behind the frontstretch grandstands. They are easily accessible and give fans the opportunity to arrive to the track on race days on their time frame, knowing they have a guaranteed spot just a short hop, skip, jump or walk away from NASCAR's Most Competitive venue.[More](3-14-2017)


    News from March 13, 2017

    Latest on a new manufacturer to NASCAR: The rumblings about a new manufacturer entering Cup haven't quieted since Dodge's multiple meetings in the offseason with NASCAR. This past weekend, there was garage buzz that 1) Dodge might be moving down the road with a team; and 2) there could be another manufacturer interested.[More](3-13-2017)

    O'Donnell comments on Las Vegas fight: NASCAR plans to meet with Kyle Busch and Joey Logano to discuss their last-lap contact and altercation on pit road Sunday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, but a series official said on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that "our intention would be not to react'' unless new evidence emerges. Steve O'Donnell, NASCAR's executive vice president and chief racing development officer, addressed the Busch-Logano incident Monday on "The Morning Drive,'' saying that it remained under review.[More](3-13-2017)

    Keselowski talks about end of Las Vegas race: He says something major broke to cause the brakes to go out and the car not want to turn. "They'll have to take it apart. At the end we have to go to inspection and stuff, so we're not allowed to look. I just know it was something major. It wouldn't turn and I lost brakes, so that's a pretty good indicator, but that's the way it goes. That's racing and that's why you watch until the end and you never know what's gonna happen."[More](3-13-2017)

    Another solid run leaves Kyle Larson near the series lead: Those looking for an in-depth understanding of NASCAR's stage-based competition format can take a lesson from Kyle Larson. With his runner-up finish in Sunday's Kobalt 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Larson recorded his second straight second-place run in the young Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season. The driver of the No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet is leaving Las Vegas second in the series standings, trailing Brad Keselowski by a single point.[More](3-13-2017)

    Las Vegas commercial breakdown: For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday's race. Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 3:30 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 6:45 PM (all times are EDT). I did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. Fox was the broadcast team for this event.[More](3-13-2017)

    Texas unveils track renovations: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver Chris Buescher and Verizon IndyCar Series driver Ed Carpenter joined Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage for the ceremonial first lap Monday as the track's major renovations were officially unveiled. Amid fireworks on the frontstretch, NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer Steve O'Donnell and INDYCAR President of Competition and Operations Jay Frye waved the green flag on Buescher, Carpenter and Gossage as they drove the speedway's official Chevrolet SS pace cars three wide for the inaugural lap on the newly repaved and re-profiled 1.5-mile oval.[More](3-13-2017)

    Wise Health System to sponsor Texas' April XFINITY Series race Wise Health System has signed a multi-year agreement with Texas Motor Speedway to serve as the entitlement sponsor for April's NASCAR XFINITY Series race and as the speedway's official healthcare provider. The five-year agreement is a multi-pronged sponsorship that is anchored by the entitlement rights for the XFINITY Series race that will be re-branded as the "My Bariatric Solutions 300." The 300-mile, 200-lap race is scheduled for Saturday, April 8.[More](3-13-2017)

    Daniel Suarez $19 ticket package at Phoenix: 2016 NASCAR XFINITY Series Champion Daniel Suárez will be making his Phoenix Raceway debut in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series on Sunday, March 19, and what better way to celebrate than with $19 tickets to the Camping World 500. Located in the Lower Bryan Grandstand, a special ticket package is available to celebrate his first appearance. The ticket package includes a Daniel Suárez autographed hero card (limited to the first 250) and one lucky buyer and a guest will be entered into a sweepstakes to win a meet and greet with Suárez on Sunday[More](3-13-2017)


    News from March 12, 2017

    Race recap: Truex wins at Las Vegas; Kyle Busch, Logano brawl on pit road In a race whose aftermath left hometown driver Kyle Busch with a bloody forehead, Martin Truex Jr. passed the faltering car of Brad Keselowski on the white-flag lap and cruised to a sweep of all three stages in Sunday's Kobalt 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. As Truex approached the checkered flag to win a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race for the first time this season and the first time at LVMS, Joey Logano's Ford slid up into Kyle Busch's Toyota in a battle for third position. Busch spun into the inside wall on pit road and limped across the finish line in 22nd place.[More](3-12-2017)

    Truex Jr. wins at Las Vegas: #78-Martin Truex, Jr. won the Kobalt 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway for his 1st win of the season, 1st win at Las Vegas and 8th career win. Truex, Jr. dominated most of the race, leading 150 of the 267 laps and won all three stages to get the maximum possible 60 points on the day. However, he was running second until he passed the pole sitter #2-Keselowski coming to the white flag. Keselowski said something broke on the car before losing the lead.
    #42-Larson finished second followed by #24-Elliott, #22-Logano, #2-Keselowski, #11-Hamlin, #21-Blaney, #1-McMurray, #20-Kenseth, and #14-Bowyer.
    #4-Harvick, the points leader coming into the race, had a tire go down early in the race and hit the outside wall. He finished 38th.
    There was a fight on pit road after the race. On the final lap, contact between #22-Logano and #18-Busch sent Busch spinning off turn 4. Once cars were on pit road, Busch confronted Logano and a fight started. Logano was pulled away but Busch fought with a #22 crew member before they could be separated.
    There were 14 lead changes among 6 drivers and 6 cautions for 34 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 136.032mph.
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs: Sunday, March 12 at 10:00pm/et on FS1; Monday, March 13 at 6:30am/et on FS1; Monday, March 13 at 9:30am/et on FS2.
    See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and [NOTE: money won is no longer reported] more at:
    Unofficial Race Results page (pdf)
    Penalty Report (pdf).
    (3-12-2017)

    Race Fast Facts - Las Vegas:
    Martin Truex Jr. won the 20th Annual Kobalt 400, his eighth victory in 408 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races.
    This is his first victory and second top-10 finish in 2017.
    This is his first victory and fourth top-10 finish in 12 races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
    Kyle Larson (second) posted his second top-10 finish in four races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. It is his second top-10 finish in 2017.
    Chase Elliott (third) posted his first top-10 finish in two races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
    Erik Jones (15th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Brad Keselowski leads the point standings by 1 point over Kyle Larson.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(3-12-2017)

    2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Driver Chase Standings:
    [after Las Vegas, race 3 of 36]
    1) #2-Keselowski [1 win], 132
    2) #78-Martin Truex Jr [1 win], 127, -5
    3) #41-Kurt Busch [1 win], 93, -39
    4) #42-Kyle Larson, 131, -1
    5) #24-Chase Elliott, 129, -3
    6) #22-Joey Logano, 119, -13
    8) #21-Ryan Blaney, 106, -26
    9) #4-Kevin Harvick, 91, -41
    10) #5-Kasey Kahne, 88, -44
    11) #1-Jamie McMurray, 86, -46
    12) #6-Trevor Bayne, 82, -50
    13) #14-Clint Bowyer, 73, -59
    14) #20-Matt Kenseth, 71, -61
    15) #43-Aric Almirola, 70, -62
    16) #11-Denny Hamlin, 68, -64
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and
    Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf)

    NASCAR allows teams to see pit road timing data during practice: For races this weekend at Las Vegas, drivers and crew chiefs are confronted with double the number of timing lines in place for last year's events. To allow teams to get familiar with the smaller segments, NASCAR opened the timing loops for XFINITY Series practice on Friday and both Monster Energy Series practices on Saturday. During Saturday's first session, teams seemingly spent as much time huddled around computers showing the speeds in pit road sectors as they did congregating around the cars.[More](3-12-2017)

    Roger Penkse no fan of shorter race weekends: The latest trend in NASCAR is trimming race weekends, with three speedways announcing they have scheduled qualifying and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup racing on the same day this year. How fans will react remains to be seen, but at least one NASCAR team owner - Roger Penske - has concerns about the concept.[More](3-12-2017)

    Phoenix Raceway celebrates St. Patrick's Day with Lucky Leprechaun Dog: In honor of St. Patrick's Day, fans coming to the Camping World 500 race weekend March 17-19 are encouraged to take a bite out of the Lucky Leprechaun Dog, the newest signature item of Phoenix Raceway. Coming in at a whopping 950 calories, the Lucky Leprechaun Dog is a deep-fried gourmet hot dog covered in corn beef and smothered in lucky green bacon mustard sauce served on a traditional bun.[More](3-12-2017)

    Atlanta Air Show to be held at Atlanta Motor Speedway: Officials from Atlanta Motor Speedway and B. Lilley Productions announced that the track will host the inaugural Atlanta Air Show, October 14-15. It will be the first air show in history to be held at a motor speedway.[More](3-12-2017)


    News from March 11, 2017

    Happy Hour (final) practice for the Kobalt 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is over, after 50 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
    #78-Truex, Jr., 188.613
    #24-Elliott 188.574
    #88-Earnhardt, Jr. 188.436
    #20-Kenseth 188.258
    #2-Keselowski 188.140
    slowest: #83-LaJoie 179.515, #51-Hill 170.363
    best 10 consecutive lap ave #21-Blaney 185.347mph
    notes: #17-Stenhouse, Jr slid up into the outside wall late in practice. He will have to go to a backup car.
    See the fastest speeds, best 10 consecutive lap average, laps run on the Las Vegas Happy Hour Practice speeds page (pdf) (3-11-2017)

    First Saturday practice for the Kobalt 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is over, after 55 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
    #24-Elliott 191.510
    #42-Larson 188.818
    #20-Kenseth 188.954
    #18-Busch 188.515
    #5-Kahne 188.068
    slowest: #55-Cope 175.410 & #51-Hill 172.287
    best 10 consecutive lap ave: #24-Elliott, 186.480
    notes: no accidents or incidents
    See the fastest speeds, best 10 consecutive lap average, laps run on the Las Vegas Happy Hour Practice speeds page (pdf) (3-11-2017)

    Kurt Busch says Roush-Yates engines contributing to Stewart-Haas' fast start: #41-Kurt Busch says he Roush-Yates engines are contributing to Stewart-Haas' fast start in 2017. He spoke to the media Friday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.[More](3-11-2017)

    Las Vegas XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Joey Logano won the 21st Annual Boyd Gaming 300, his 28th victory in 160 NASCAR XFINITY Series races. With the victory, Logano moves into sole possession of eighth on the all-time NASCAR XFINITY Series wins list.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in 2017.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in one races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
    Kyle Larson (second) posted his second top-10 finish in three races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. It is his second top-10 finish in 2017.
    Daniel Suarez (third) posted his third top-10 finish in three races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
    Cole Custer (11th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 4 points over Ryan Reed.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(3-11-2017)

    XFINITY Driver standings following Las Vegas:
    1) #1-Elliott Sadler, 90
    2) #16-Ryan Reed [1 win], 95, -4
    3) #9-William Byron, 90, -9
    4) 21-Daniel Hemric, 72, -27
    5) #6-Darrell Wallace Jr., 70, -29
    6) #19-Matt Tifft, 66, -33
    7) #48-Brennan Poole, 66, -33
    8) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 64, -35
    9) #28-Dakoda Armstrong , 64, -35
    10) #00-Cole Custer, 62, -35
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(3-11-2017)

    Kyle Busch on XFINITY pole at Las Vegas: #18-Kyle Busch won the Coors Light pole for the Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway with a speed of 185.580mph.
    #22-Brad Keselowki will start second. The rest of the top 10: #20-Daniel Suarez, #12-Joey Logano, #2-Austin Dillon, #19-Matt Tifft, #42-Kyle Larson, #21-Daniel Hemric, #3-Ty Dillon, and #16-Ryan Reed.
    Did Not Qualify: #74-Mike Harmon, #77-Josh Bilicki, #89-Morgan Shepherd
    The starting lineup is posted on the Las Vegas starting lineup page (pdf).(3-11-2017)

    Joey Logano holds off Kyle Larson for NASCAR XFINITY win at Las Vegas: Saturday's Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway wasn't a drag race, but lane choice proved critical to Joey Logano's 28th NASCAR XFINITY Series victory in the #12 Team Penske Ford. Choosing the top side for a restart on Lap 196 of 200, after Ty Dillon's spin on Lap 192 necessitated the ninth and final caution of the afternoon, Logano cleared Kyle Larson off Turn 4 after an intense side-by-side battle and pulled away to win by .602 seconds.[More](3-11-2017)

    Johnson to appear at Phoenix's Roll-Bar Club: 2016 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Champion Jimmie Johnson has officially been added to Phoenix Raceway's Budweiser ROLL-BAR Club star-studded lineup for a moderated question and answer session before the Camping World 500 on Sunday, March 19.[More](3-11-2017)

    Skylar Stecker to perform National Anthem at Auto Club 400: Emerging artist, Skylar Stecker, will perform the National Anthem prior to the start of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on Sunday, March 26. The race will broadcast at 12:30 p.m. (PT) on FOX. Skylar Stecker is coming off a prolific year in which she released the signature edition of her debut album "This Is Me," undertook two national tours, sang the Star Spangled Banner to over 100,000 people in her original home state of Wisconsin's Lambeau Field, recorded the theme song to Radio Disney Music Awards "Cherry on Top," and hit no. 1 on the Billboard Dance Chart with "Sweet Dreams," her collaboration with the electronic duo JX RIDERS.[More](3-11-2017)


    News from March 10, 2017

    With stellar final lap, Kevin Harvick wins Atlanta pole: Brad Keselowski blew the first and second corners on his money lap in Friday's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series qualifying at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Then he blew away the rest of the field. Perhaps "blew away" is a bit of an exaggeration. Keselowski covered the 1.5-mile distance in 27.881 (193.680 mph) to edge Martin Truex Jr. (193.458 mph) for the top starting spot in Sunday's Kobalt 400 by .003 seconds. The Coors Light Pole Award was Keselowski's first of the season, his first in nine attempts at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the 13th of his career.
    [More](3-10-2017)

    Keselowski wins Las Vegas pole: #2-Brad Keselowski won the Coors Light pole for the Kobalt 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway with speed of 193.680mph for his 1st pole of 2017, 1st at Las Vegas and 13th of his career. Keselowski has won 2 times from the 12 previous poles.
    #78-Truex, Jr. will start 2nd followed by #21-Blaney, #20-Kenseth, #42-Larson, #22-Logano, #5-Kahne, #77-Jones, #18-Busch, #1-McMurray, #19-Suarez, and #24-Elliott.
    #21-Blaney was fastest in the second round with a speed of 194.147mph, will start 3rd
    #18-Busch was fastest in the first round with a speed of 194.028mph, will start 10th
    Driver(s) who will miss the race: none. 39 were entered for 40 spots
    See round-by-round qualifying results on the Las Vegas qualifying results page (pdf) and the complete starting lineup on the Las Vegas Starting Lineup page (pdf).(3-10-2017)

    Las Vegas Motor Speedway - Qualifying Fast Facts:
    Brad Keselowski won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 20th Annual Kobalt 400 with a lap of 27.881 seconds, 193.680 mph.
    This is his 13th pole in 272 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races.
    This is his first pole and third top-10 start in 2017.
    This is his first pole in nine races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
    Martin Truex Jr. (second) posted his second top-10 start of 2017 and his fifth in 12 races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
    Ryan Blaney (third) posted his first top-10 start at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. It is his first in three races this season.
    Erik Jones (eighth) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(3-10-2017)

    Qualifying Order for the Kobalt 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is posted.
    The first driver to be lined up on pit road will be #48-Johnson.
    The final driver lined up on pit road will be #78-Truex, Jr.
    The order is set by a random draw, how cars park on pit road before they qualify, held about an hour before the first practice.
    After the first round, the cars lined up by speed.
    For the qualifying order, see the Qualifying Order page (pdf).(3-10-2016)

    Friday practice for the Kobalt 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top-five and notes:
    #78-Truex, Jr. 193.500
    #2-Keselowski 192.995
    #48-Johnson 192.988
    #42-Larson 192.719
    #20-Kenseth 192.644
    slowest: #55-Cope 176.835 & #51-Hill 123.375
    most laps run: #18-Busch 27, #22-Logano 22
    open teams: #51-Hill(39th), #55-Cope(38th), #83-LaJoie(40th), #51-Hill(31st)
    Top 10 consecutive laps: #5-Kahne 184.712
    See fastest speeds, laps run on the Las Vegas Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf)(3-10-2017)

    DASHUB sponsoring Timmy Hill at Las Vegas: Dashub.com, a leading online vehicle marketplace, announced their entry into the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series this weekend in the Kobalt 400 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The company is continuing its marketing partnership with veteran team owner Rick Ware of Rick Ware Racing, who in 2016 fielded a DASHUB entry as the primary sponsor in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Daytona.[More](3-10-2017)

    Juice Battery joins Ragan for three races: Front Row Motorsports has another new partner on David Ragan's #38 Ford for the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season. JUICE Battery, a new consumer household battery brand, will be a primary partner for three races with Ragan's team, beginning this weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. JUICE, a Florida-based consumer battery technology company, is making its NASCAR national series debut with Front Row Motorsports to coincide with a March launch of its new game-changing batteries. Ragan and the No. 38 team will promote the company's new batteries at two additional races - at Bristol Motor Speedway in August and Talladega Superspeedway in October.[More](3-10-2017)

    Harvick up front this season, but can't get a win: Kevin Harvick has been fast to start the season, but he's been unable to translate that into any victories yet. He crashed at Daytona and was a victim of a late-race speeding penalty at Atlanta. However, thanks to the new point system, Harvick sits on top of the standings despite his 15.5 average finish.[More](3-10-2017)

    Danica Patrick among highest paid women in sports: As far as the highest paid women in sport is concerned, it's nearly game, set, and match to tennis stars. But the ranking, which is based on Forbes data..., does pack a surprise or two. From the consistently brilliant Serena Williams, to the powerful UFC star Ronda Rousey.[More](3-10-2017)

    McDowell And Leavine Family Racing host Thunderbirds crew chief at Las Vegas: Michael McDowell and Leavine Family Racing (LFR) will join the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) as they head west for the first race of the West Coast swing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. LFR is also excited to have United States Air Force (USAF) TSgt. Allan Habel join the crew for the weekend of the Kobalt 400. TSgt. Habel is the crew chief for the USAF Thunderbirds and will have a chance to shadow LFR's crew chief Todd Parrott, as well as the crew, as he gets the opportunity to trade in his USAF Thunderbird Jumpsuit for an LFR crew shirt.[More](3-10-2017)

    Suarez paces final XFINITY practice: #20-Daniel Suarez was quickest in final practice at Las Vegas Motor Speedway with a speed of 182.389mph.
    #19-Matt Tifft was second, followed by: #18-Kyle Busch, #12-Joey Logano, #33-Brandon Jones, #22-Brad Keselowski, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #11-Blake Koch, #23-Spencer Gallagher, and #9-William Byron.
    41 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Las Vegas final practice speeds page (pdf).(3-10-2017)

    Brendan Gaughan fastest in first XFINITY practice: #62-Brendan Gaughan was fastest during opening practice at Las Vegas Motor Speedway with a speed of 182.568mph.
    The rest of the top 10: #20-Daniel Suarez, #12-Joey Logano, #9-William Byron, #22-Brad Keselowski, #33-Brandon Jones, #18-Kyle Busch, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #42-Kyle Larson, and #1-Elliott Sadler.
    37 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Las Vegas practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(3-10-2017)

    Morgan Shepherd carries 50th anniversary celebration to Las Vegas: "We've got a new car we're bringing to Vegas," says Shepherd. "We took it to Atlanta, but had issues with the fuel pump as well as a few other kinks, so we didn't make the race. That's okay, though, as we think we've got them worked out. We put it on the pull down rig, made a bunch of changes, so we'll head to Vegas and do the best we can there for Visone RV and all our other partners and friends."[More](3-10-2017)

    Pennzoil to sponsor spring Las Vegas race: Pennzoil and Speedway Motorsports Incorporated (SMI) announce Pennzoil motor oil as title sponsor of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (LVMS) starting in 2018. The Pennzoil 400 will anchor a NASCAR tripleheader weekend ending with the main event at the 1.5-mile tri-oval race in early March, 2018.[More](3-10-2017)

    Charlotte Motor Speedway likely to use road course in 2018 UPDATE: Right turns in the Cup Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway are on hold for 2017. Multiple sources within the NASCAR industry told NBC Sports that the 1.5-mile track will hold its Oct. 7 race on its oval after exploring the concept of using the road course. It's likely the track's road course will be used in the 2018 playoffs.(3-7-2017)

    UPDATE: With Charlotte Motor Speedway using its 1.5-mile oval in the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs this October, the track is in the process of considering the road course for 2018. In a phone call Thursday morning to NBC Sports, Speedway Motorsports Inc. CEO Marcus Smith addressed the prospect and said the track is making upgrades to its infield layout.[More](3-10-2017)


    News from March 9, 2017

    New Hampshire general manager talks about loss of race date: The general manager of New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Thursday urged fans and small businesses to give him time to fill in the gaps now that one of its two NASCAR races is moving to Las Vegas.[More](3-9-2017)

    Drivers added to Martinsville Green Flag Experience: Not only will Dale Earnhardt Jr. be back on the track at Martinsville Speedway this spring in the Hendrick Motorsports #88 Axalta Chevrolet SS, the Mountain Dew driver is also scheduled to take part in the Green Flag Experience presented by Mountain Dew prior to the race. Other guests include Earnhardt's former crew chief, Steve Letarte, as well as drivers Denny Hamlin, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Ty Dillon.[More](3-9-2017)


    News from March 8, 2017

    NASCAR Announces Nominees For NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2018, Landmark Award NASCAR today announced the 20 nominees for the NASCAR Hall of Fame's Class of 2018, as well as the five nominees for the Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR. Each name made an indelible mark on the sport, whether from behind the wheel or atop a pit box ... or even from inside a broadcast booth. After long careers that have helped shape NASCAR, all are now one step closer to its highest honor - enshrinement into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Included among the list are five first-time nominees, all racing heroes who earned race wins, championships ... and millions of fans. Among them are two owners who have each eclipsed the 100-win mark (Joe Gibbs and Roger Penske), a driver who combined for four championships in NASCAR's Modified and Late Model Sportsman division (Red Farmer), an extreme talent who collected 19 wins before his too-soon passing (Davey Allison) and the 2000 premier series champion (Bobby Labonte). For a full list of nominees, please see below.[More](3-8-2017)

    Las Vegas to host two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup races in 2018: Las Vegas Motor Speedway will hold a pair of aces next year as the 1.5-mile superspeedway doubles down with a second Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race for the 2018 season and beyond. The speedway made the announcement at a joint news conference with the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority at Cashman Center Wednesday, just two days before the green flag drops on its 2017 NASCAR weekend. LVMS will host the new Monster Energy Cup race beginning in the fall of 2018 in addition to its customary March NASCAR weekend.[More](3-8-2017)

    Allmendinger penalized for loose lug nuts: NASCAR released its weekly Post-Event Penalty Report, this week for Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    #47-Allmendinger - Violation of Sections 10.9.10.4: Tires and Wheels.
    Note: Race finish is encumbered per Section 12.10 Encumbered Race Finishes.
    Lug nut(s) not properly installed.
    Crew chief (Randall Burnett) has been fined $65,000 and suspended from the next three Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series points events. Team has been assessed with the loss of 35 driver and 35 owner points.[More](3-8-2017)

    Richard Petty to be honored by NASCAR leaders and legends at Petersen Museum: The Petersen Automotive Museum, along with Hostetler Companies and Ford Performance, will honor "The King" Richard Petty, on March 23, 2017. The event will feature an all-star panel including Jeff Gordon, Kyle Petty, Rusty Wallace and Mike Helton with NASCAR. Also Mike Joy, lead race announcer for FOX NASCAR, will MC the event. As part of the tribute, the Petersen will also honor Petty with the museum's Robert E. Petersen Lifetime Achievement Award.[More](3-8-2017)

    NASCAR drivers, social media stars lead return of NASCAR Goes West: NASCAR drivers are packing a sense of adventure for their 2,000-mile journey west as NASCAR Goes West celebrates the sport's annual stretch of races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Phoenix Raceway and Auto Club Speedway.[More](3-8-2017)

    NASCAR and SiriusXM extend broadcasting agreement through 2022: NASCAR and SiriusXM today announced a six-year renewal to extend their broadcasting and marketing agreement through 2022. SiriusXM will continue to deliver 24/7 racing content to millions of listeners across North America, including live broadcasts of every race, plus daily NASCAR talk and interviews with voices across the industry through its exclusive SiriusXM NASCAR Radio channel. NASCAR content is available to SiriusXM subscribers in their car, at home or on the go on satellite radios, on the SiriusXM app and online at SiriusXM.com.[More]{3-8-2017)

    Kyle Busch's car fails post-race inspection UPDATE The Joe Gibbs Racing race-winning Xfinity Series car of #18-Kyle Busch failed postrace height inspection following the event Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway as it was too low in the left front and right front.[More](3-4-2017)
    UPDATE: #18-Kyle Busch has been penalized for violation of Sections 20.17.3.2.1.2 Post-Race Front Body Inspection Heights
    Note: Race finish is encumbered per Section 12.10 Encumbered Race Finishes.
    Post-race height measurements were outside NASCAR allowed tolerances.
    Crew chief (Scott Graves) has been fined $10,000 and suspended from the next NASCAR XFINITY Series points event. Team has been assessed with the loss of 10 NASCAR XFINITY Series owner points.[More](3-8-2017)

    Pfizer continuing sponsorship of Ty Dillon, RCR: Richard Childress Racing (RCR) is continuing its partnership with Pfizer Inc., a premier innovative biopharmaceutical company, for the 2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series season. Pfizer Inc. will feature brands Nexium 24HR ClearMinis and Advil with primary paint schemes for driver Ty Dillon throughout the 2017 XFINITY Series season. This will be the third season of partnership between RCR and Pfizer Inc. To celebrate the release of the new Nexium 24HR ClearMinis, the brand will be the primary sponsor of the #3 Chevrolet Camaro at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the spring race at Bristol Motor Speedway.[More](3-8-2017)

    Fans can celebrate Richard Petty's 80th birthday with special ticket package at Phoenix: In celebration of Richard Petty's 80th birthday in 2017, Phoenix Raceway is offering fans a special $43 grandstand ticket for the Camping World 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday, March 19. Fans will have a chance to say "Happy Birthday" to the "The King" when Petty makes an appearance on the DC Solar Power Pavilion.[More](3-8-2017)

    DAYTONA 500 Fancam returns: The popular DAYTONA 500 Fancam Presented By Outback Steakhouse has returned to help race fans relive their experience at the recent 59th annual "Great American Race" where they witnessed a stunning victory by Stewart-Haas Racing's Kurt Busch. The 2017 DAYTONA 500 Fancam Presented By Outback Steakhouse is a photo technology that transforms a high-definition, 360-degree crowd image of Daytona International Speedway into a unique social media fan experience. Designed to recognize the passion of loyal fans, Fancam captures high-definition images of the crowd all the way down to the seat level and uploads them to a custom landing page where fans can tag themselves and share on Facebook, Twitter and e-mail. On the day of the race, panoramic shots of the crowd were taken at two different points - prior to the DAYTONA 500 Pre-Race Show featuring Lady Antebellum and at the start of the DAYTONA 500.[More](3-8-2017)


    News from March 7, 2017

    Ray Evernham returns in Velocity's Americarna: Velocity's AMERICARNA returns to the network for a fourth season on Thursday, March 9 with NASCAR champion crew chief Ray Evernham guiding viewers through celebrated, remarkable stories from the automotive world. From Mario Andretti's legendary 1965 Brawner Hawk IndyCar to the 1958 Chevy from the iconic movie American Graffiti, Evernham unveils the fascinating details behind the most notable cars in American history.[More](3-7-2017)

    Kaitlin Olson to drive pace car at Auto Club Speedway: Auto Club Speedway announced that Kaitlin Olson, star of FOX's hit comedy, THE MICK, will be behind the wheel of the Official NASCAR 2017 Toyota Camry Pace Car as she leads the field before the start of the Auto Club 400.As the official pace car driver, Olson will lead the top Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers to the green flag to kick off the Auto Club 400. [More](3-7-2017)

    Old World Industries and Joe Gibbs Racing Announce Multi-Year Partnership Old World Industries (OWI) and Joe Gibbs Racing announced a multi-year deal for the automotive aftermarket company and Official Partner of NASCAR to sponsor drivers Matt Kenseth and Daniel Suárez in various NASCAR national series races. Old World Industries' key brands, including PEAK and BlueDEF, will serve as primary sponsor of Kenseth's #20 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Toyota Camry at the March 12th race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, followed by the March 26th race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana. It will also be featured as a season-long associate sponsor of his No. 20 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Toyota Camry. In addition, the company will serve as primary sponsor on Suárez's #18 NASCAR XFINITY Series Toyota Camry in Talladega and as an associate in the remainder of his XFINITY Series races.[More](3-7-2017)

    Lucas Oil sponsoring Austin Dillon at Las Vegas: Lucas Oil, the official provider of premium motor oil for ECR Engines and Richard Childress Racing (RCR), will serve as primary sponsor for Austin Dillon and the #3 Chevrolet SS in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway this weekend. Lucas Oil has powered RCR and ECR Engines to over 50 victories since the inception of the partnership in 2014.[More](3-7-2017)

    NASCAR to quiet the cars? The rumble of the cars on NASCAR tracks could grow quieter under a proposal reported Monday that would allow fans to more easily communicate during races. The proposal is among 15 to 20 changes currently being studied by NASCAR, according to The Sports Business Journal. The sounds emitted by the stock cars is one of the allures of NASCAR, but the constant roar of the cars --- which is usually around 100 decibels during races --- makes communication difficult and the use of ear plugs a must among many fans. Messages left with NASCAR representatives by USA TODAY Sports were not immediately returned Monday. Cutting down on the noise race cars emit would be a serious undertaking and changes to the exhaust system could become pricey.(USA Today )(3-7-2017)

    Goodyear and NASCAR have started negotiations on an extension A month into the final season of their current contract, Goodyear and NASCAR finally have started negotiations on an extension - much later than the typical timeframe. Consider its five-year deal that expires this season was signed in October 2011 - more than 15 months ahead of the end of its previous contract. In an interview with ESPN.com and NBC Sports, Goodyear worldwide director of racing Stu Grant said the company had its first major negotiations meeting with NASCAR in mid-February. With the past year being devoted to finding a Cup Series title sponsor, Goodyear understandably was less of a priority. "The NASCAR guys had a lot on their plate," Grant said. "We had early discussions with NASCAR and agreed to put our extension on the back burner, but now we're having discussions in earnest. We're committed to NASCAR. NASCAR is committed to us. Our negotiations are going well. I think we're in good shape."(NBC Sports)[More](3-7-2017)

    Natural Light & Barstool Sports to sponsor Buescher at Vegas Compiled from a few tweets at @PardonMyTake, a podcast Twitter feed for Barstool Sports: "Wheels up to Vegas. Huge week coming culminating in our first ever NASCAR Race at the Kobalt 400 and a Barstool/Natty car" with Natty being Natural Light Beer.
    "Now this is going to be fun...#cheers" along with an image of the car was posted at JTG Daugherty Racing's Twitter
    and a few hours after that, an image of the #37 Natural Beer / Barstool Sports scheme was tweeted at @PardonMyTake: "Coming to a NASCAR race near you soon..."
    see the images on the #37 Team Schemes page (3-7-2017)

    Atlanta TV Ratings Posted Fox yesterday drew a 3.6 overnight for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race from Atlanta, down slightly from a 3.7 for the same race last year. However, the second race of the Cup Series season was down from a 5.1 in '15 from Atlanta and down from a 4.8 in '14 from Phoenix (Sports Business Daily)[More](3-7-2017)

    Ford going for third straight win to start season, first time since 1992 It's been a great start to the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season for Ford Performance with back-to-back wins in Daytona and Atlanta. As the focus shifts out west for three straight races, Ford takes a look at some past streaks and its overall success at this week's stop - Las Vegas Motor Speedway. This marks the first time since 2009 that Ford has won the first two races of a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup season, but it's been 25 years since the Blue Oval has started with three straight.(Ford Performance)[More](3-7-2017)

    Dover vs. Pocono Rivalry Day: Kenseth vs. Truex Jr. Dover International Speedway and Pocono Raceway will meet for their fifth annual track-vs.-track competition on Wednesday, May 3 with "Dover vs. Pocono Rivalry Day" at Coca-Cola Park, home of the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, in Allentown, Pa. The game will feature Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers Matt Kenseth (Team Pocono) and Martin Truex Jr. (Team Dover). The rosters for each team will be rounded out with members of national and local motorsports media, as well as other local media personalities. Access to "Dover vs. Pocono Rivalry Day" is free with a ticket to the May 3 game between the Lehigh Valley IronPigs and the visiting Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders. Activities in the KidsZone are free until 6 p.m. for children wearing NASCAR-related items (PRs)[More Info](3-7-2017)

    Jimmie Johnson announces grant opportunities, Blue Bunny Helmet of Hope Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson and Mike Wells, president and CEO of Wells Enterprises, maker of Blue Bunny Ice Cream, announced the launch of the 2017 Blue Bunny Helmet of Hope campaign, which will award $125,000 to five non-profit organizations in May. The announcement on Johnson's Facebook page, revealed that not-for-profit 501c3 organizations that directly support K-12 public education will be eligible to compete for one of the five available $25,000 grants.[More Info](3-7-2017)

    Surface Sunscreen sponsoring Matt Tifft at Las Vegas: Matt Tifft heads to Las Vegas Motor Speedway in his first full season at Joe Gibbs Racing. For the third race of the 2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series season, Tifft will make his third-career start at LVMS behind the wheel of the #19 Surface Sunscreen/Tunity/BrainGear Toyota Camry.[More](3-7-2017)

    B.J. McLeod returns to driving duties at Las Vegas Motor Speedway: Officials from B.J. McLeod Motorsports announced that team principal B.J. McLeod will return to the driving duties in Saturday afternoon's NASCAR XFINITY Series Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. McLeod will drive the #78 Chevrolet Camaro for the first time in 2017 and 45th of his XFINITY Series career. Denton, N.C. native Clint King drove the car at Daytona International Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway respectively.[More](3-7-2017)

    Charlotte Motor Speedway likely to use road course in 2018: Right turns in the Cup Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway are on hold for 2017. Multiple sources within the NASCAR industry told NBC Sports that the 1.5-mile track will hold its Oct. 7 race on its oval after exploring the concept of using the road course. It's likely the track's road course will be used in the 2018 playoffs.[More](3-7-2017)


    News from March 6, 2017

    Entry List for the Kobalt 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is posted, 39 teams/drivers [for 40 spots] are listed.
    36 teams with Charters are guaranteed to make the field. The rest need to make the field via qualifying / qualifying races / rules book (owners attempts/points).
    Some of the drivers entered include: #51-Hill*, #55-Cope*, #83-LaJoie*
    Drivers who currently to not drive for a team with a Charter and need to race into the field: #51-Hill*, #55-Cope*, #83-LaJoie*.
    Drivers who would miss the race if qualifying is canceled (least race attempts): none
    Since only 39 cars are entered, all drivers will make the race.
    See the full entry list on the Entry List (pdf)

    Goodyear continues examination of Kyle Busch's Daytona 500 tires Goodyear officials have sent the tires that were on Kyle Busch's car when it wrecked in Sunday's Daytona 500 for further testing. Busch lost control, spun and collected several other cars, including Dale Earnhardt Jr., who was leading the race at the time. On Wednesday morning's "The Morning Drive" on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, Goodyear director of racing Greg Stucker said Busch's tires arrived Tuesday at company headquarters in Akron, Ohio. "Our engineers went over them very thoroughly, just to make sure we didn't miss anything at the racetrack," Stucker said. "We feel we didn't. We sent them down to our research facility, where we have forensic specialists if you will, that can really do a deep dive into all the different components, all the different parts of the tire and look at them in a lot more detail than you can visually with electron microscopes and a lot of other different tools they have at their exposure. It's very impressive some of the detail they can go into and we'll find out as much as we can. That takes a little bit of time to do, but that's in the works."(NBC Sports)(3-2-2017)
    UPDATE Goodyear has refuted Kyle Busch's claim that a flat tire caused his spin in the Daytona 500. Busch blamed the crash on a rear tire that went flat and said, "You know, obviously Goodyear tires just aren't very good at holding air." Goodyear general manager of worldwide racing Stu Grant said definitive video evidence showed that all four tires on Busch's #18 Toyota were up when it began to spin. Speaking before Sunday's Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Grant said no cuts were found on Busch's tires at the track or at Goodyear's technical center and research facility in Akron, Ohio. Technicians also analyzed broadcast video to determine that Busch's right rear was up when the car spun. Goodyear contacted the NASCAR R&D Center for additional video to verify the left rear was up.(NBC Sports)[More](3-6-2017)

    Race and Commercial Breakdown of the 2017 Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 For those of you NASCAR fans that like stats and love to hate commercials, here is the breakdown for Sunday's race. Began recording the times at the Invocation of the race at 2:30 PM, and stopped at the waving of the checkered flag at 6:21 PM (all times are EST). Did not keep records for the pre- and post-race coverage. Fox was the broadcast team for this event.(CawsnJaws.com)[More](3-6-2017)

    Anderson's season in question after Atlanta wreck: Jordan Anderson, has had a tough start to his 2017 season. He spent much of December 2016 on his couch sending out e-mails and making phone calls to try and secure a ride for the upcoming season. Ultimately, Anderson decided to call up Mike Harmon, who he drove for in 2015, to bring the No. 74 truck to Daytona to attempt to make the field for the NextEra Energy Resources 250. However, Daytona proved to be a struggle for Anderson who failed to qualify for the race. Anderson would return to the track this weekend for the Active Pest Control 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway, where he qualified 28th, but on lap 104, he was involved in an accident. The truck was the only one Anderson had so unless he finds another one, his season is likely over. [More](3-6-2017)


    News from March 5, 2017

    AJ Allmendinger faces discipline over loose lug nuts in Cup race: JTG Daugherty Racing driver AJ Allmendinger faces a 35-point penalty and his crew chief Randall Burnett faces a three-race suspension and a $65,000 fine because Allmendinger had three lug nuts not secure on his car at the end of the NASCAR Cup Series race Sunday at Atlanta. Allmendinger, who finished third last week in the Daytona 500, was 26th Sunday. He is 11th in the standings thanks to the Daytona finish, but a 35-point penalty would drop him from to 35th in the standings two races into the season.[More](3-5-2017)

    Race recap: Brad Keselowski pounces on unexpected opportunity to win at Atlanta: Thanks to the unintentional generosity of the dominant driver in Sunday's Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500, opportunistic Brad Keselowski won the second Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race of the season.Kevin Harvick led 292 of the 325 laps at the 1.54-mile track, but a pit road speeding penalty under caution on Lap 311 sent him to the back of the field for the final restart. That gave Keselowski the chance he needed, and on Lap 319 he surged past Kyle Larson for the top spot and pulled away to win by .564 seconds.[More](3-5-2017)

    Keselowski wins at Atlanta: #2-Brad Keselowski won the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway for his 1st win of the season, 1st win at Atlanta and 22nd career win. He led 21 of the 325 laps. Keselowski took the race lead with 60 laps to go, but had to pit a second time under caution after a wheel was left loose. He rebounded to pass Larson for the lead with 6 to go and held on to win by just over a half second.
    #42-Larson finished 2nd, followed by #20-Kenseth, #5-Kahne, #24-Elliott, #22-Logano, #41-Busch, #78-Truex, Jr., #4-Harvick, and #1-McMurray.
    Polesitter #4-Harvick dominated the race. He led 82 of the first 85 laps and was the leader at the end of stage one. He then led 72 of the next 85 laps and led at the end of stage 2. He ran up from during the second half of the race but was caught speeding on pit road during the final pit stop with 14 laps to go. He led 293 of the 325 laps.
    There were 10 lead changes among 6 drivers and 6 cautions for 32 yellow flag laps.
    The average speed was 140.898mph.
    Scheduled Race Re-Airs: Sunday, March 5 at 11:30pm/et on FS1; Monday, March 6 at 6:30am/et on FS1; Monday, March 6 at 9:30am/et on FS2
    See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and more at:
    Unofficial Race Results page (pdf)
    Penalty Report (pdf).
    (3-5-2017)

    Race Fast Facts - Atlanta:
    Brad Keselowski won the 58th Annual Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500, his 22nd victory in 271 NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series races.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in 2017.
    This is his first victory and fifth top-10 finish in nine races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    Kyle Larson (second) posted his second top-10 finish in four races at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It is his first top-10 finish in 2017.
    Matt Kenseth (third) posted his 17th top-10 finish in 29 races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    Erik Jones (14th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Kevin Harvick leads the point standings by 4 points over Kurt Busch.
    (NASCAR Integrated Sports Marketing)(3-5-2017)

    2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Driver Chase Standings:
    [after Atlanta, race 2 of 36]
    1) #41-Busch [1 win], 86, -4
    2) #2-Keselowski [1 win], 84, -6
    3) #4-Harvick, 90 (first in points, but no win)
    4) #24)Chase Elliott, 82, -8
    5) #22-Joey Logano, 80, -10
    6) #42-Kyle Larson, 79, -11
    7) #78-Martin Truex Jr, 67, -23
    8) #21-Ryan Blaney, 63, -27
    9) #5-Kasey Kahne, 63, -27
    10) #6-Trevor Bayne, 58, -32
    11) #47-AJ Allmendinger, 50, -40
    12) #1-Jamie McMurray, 49, -41
    13) #43-Aric Almirola, 47, -43
    14) #14-Clint Bowyer, 46, -44
    15) #27-Paul Menard, 44, -46
    16) #20-Matt Kenseth, 41, -49
    See the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings page (pdf) and
    Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf)

    Oil spilled on Kyle Busch's tires in Atlanta garage: Goodyear and driver Kyle Busch seem to be inextricably linked in the news fodder of the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season, and that continued to be the case Sunday morning here at Atlanta Motor Speedway. [More](3-5-2017)

    Atlanta will reconsider track repave: Speedway Motorsports Inc. chairman Marcus Smith said a planned repaving of Atlanta, which is set to begin soon after the race weekend, could be put on hold. Drivers in all three of NASCAR's national series have made comments this weekend asking the track not to repave in order to preserve the high-quality racing it currently produces.[More](3-5-2017)

    Las Vegas close to landing second top-tier NASCAR race? Las Vegas is close to getting a second top-tier NASCAR race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority board of directors scheduled a special meeting Wednesday to consider an annual $2.5 million sponsorship agreement with NASCAR that would include the addition of a fall race at the speedway. Since 1998, NASCAR has had a Las Vegas race, usually in March. This year's race, the Kobalt 400, a part of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup race series, is March 12.(Las Vegas Review Journal), The question would be? which of Speedway Motorsports race tracks would give up a race date (Atlanta, Bristol, Charlotte, Texas, New Hampshire, Sonoma, Kentucky)
    UPDATE 3-3-2017 NASCAR issued a statement from Jim Cassidy, senior vice president of Racing Operations and NASCAR Event Management, that said: "We are constantly working with promoters to discuss and develop NASCAR schedules. We have not finalized any schedules for 2018 or beyond, but will announce them as they become final." Las Vegas Motor Speedway, which has hosted one Cup race a year since 1998, issued a statement that read: "All of the information regarding a potential sponsorship opportunity between Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority can be found at www.lvcva.com. When there is more information to provide, we will do so subsequent to the LVCVA Board of Directors meeting on March 8."(NBC Sports)
    UPDATE 3-5-2017 The chief executive officer of Speedway Motorsports Inc., describes the chances of a second NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway as "always a possibility.'' When pressed if Las Vegas could get a second Cup date for 2018, Marcus Smith told NBC Sports on Sunday: "You just never know. The schedule is something that we're always working on. But there are a lot of moving parts. A lot of dominoes that kind of have to fall into place."[More](3-5-2017)

    Bobby Allison inducted into Hampton Speed Lane Two of NASCAR's all-time racing greats were inducted into Hampton's (GA) Speed Lane on Thursday. Bobby Allison and his late son Davey were inducted into the city's walk of fame on Thursday evening. The induction of Davey Allison was a surprise for those in attendance, as only Bobby's induction had been announced beforehand. Bobby was introduced to the crowd by Hampton Mayor Steve Hutchison, who spoke of some of Allison's many accomplishments in racing, including the 1983 Winston Cup Grand National Championship, 84 career victories and three Daytona 500 wins in 1978, 1982 and 1988. Hutchison presented Allison with two proclamations honoring him and his son.(Henry Herald)[More](3-5-2017)

    Falcons' Loss Forces Atlanta Motor Speedway's Ed Clark To Pay Up Atlanta Motor Speedway's (AMS) Ed Clark is a man of his word - even if it means wearing a New England Patriots Jersey, raising the team's banner over the track and delivering peaches to Victory Lane at the speedway's sister track, New Hampshire Motor Speedway (NHMS), in Concord, New Hampshire later this year. After all "a bet is a bet." Clark said.
    Back when the teams were set for the 2017 Super Bowl, David McGrath of NHMS, proposed a bet with Clark and his staff. If the Falcons won:
    Atlanta Falcons flag to be hung outside New Hampshire Motor Speedway office building the next day and during NASCAR race week July 10-16
    While wearing a Falcons jersey, David McGrath will present Ed Clark and the March 5 Folds of Honor QuikTrip race winner with New England Lobster in victory lane
    Four Falcons and Atlanta Motor Speedway fans will win premium tickets to the July 16 New Hampshire 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway ($500 value)
    However, if the Patriots were victorious, then:
    New England Patriots flag to be hung outside Atlanta Motor Speedway office building the next day and during NASCAR race week Feb. 27-March 5
    While wearing a Patriots jersey, Ed Clark will present David McGrath and the July 16 New Hampshire 301 race winner with Georgia Peaches in victory lane
    Four Patriots and New Hampshire Motor Speedway fans will win premium tickets to the March 5 Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway ($400 value)
    Clark knows he has to pay off over the Atlanta Falcons' Super Bowl loss to the New England Patriots, even if it means taking the risk of getting beat-up by Atlanta fans seeing him in the Tom Brady jersey, he joked. He said he will meet with the New Hampshire fans later in the weekend.(KickinTheTires)[More](3-5-2017)

    'The Maids' to sponsor Premium Motorsports #15 at Atlanta Reed Sorenson will take over the reins of the #15 Premium Motorsports Chevy this weekend for the second race of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Sorenson will carry 'The Maids' as his primary sponsor for the 'Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500'. 'The Maids' is a nationally franchised maid service with 200 locations providing premier maid services to over 1 million homes per year. 'The Maids' cleans in teams of three to four professional cleaners - just like a pit crew! They get in, clean thoroughly, and get out real fast! 'The Maids' offices are locally owned and operated. For more information on 'The Maids' visit www.maids.com or call 1-800-843-6243 for an instant estimate today.(Premium Motorsports)[More](3-5-2017)

    By-The-Numbers - 2,500th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Race
    1 - The very first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race was held at Charlotte Speedway in Charlotte, North Carolina on Sunday, June 19, 1949 - the race was won by Jim Roper (Lincoln).
    3 - Number of different entitlement sponsors NASCAR's premier series has had over the years: Winston, Sprint/Nextel and Monster Energy.
    7 - Number of the most Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championships won by a single driver - Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt and Jimmie Johnson each have seven titles.
    14 - Number of years since the inception of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoffs (2004).
    23 - Number of different active tracks the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series currently competes on.
    31 - Number of different drivers to win at least one Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship.
    100 - The 100th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race was held at North Wilkesboro Speedway in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina on Sunday, October 26, 1952 - the race was won by Herb Thomas (Hudson).
    123 - Number of the most poles by a single Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver - Richard Petty's 123 poles.
    140 - Number of highest Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races a single track has hosted - Daytona International Speedway (140 MENCS races)
    156 - Number of different tracks the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series has competed on.
    186 - Number of different drivers to win at least one race in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.
    200 - Number of the most wins by a single Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver - Richard Petty's 200 wins.
    224 - Number of different Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers to win at least one Coors Light pole
    500 - The 500th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race was held at Starkey Speedway, in Roanoke, Virginia on Saturday, June 24, 1961 - the race was won by Junior Johnson (Pontiac).
    1,000 - The 1,000th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race was held at Ontario Motor Speedway, in Ontario, California on Sunday, February 28, 1971 - the race was won by A.J. Foyt (Mercury).
    1,182 - Number of the most starts by a single Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver - Richard Petty's 1,182 starts.
    2,000 - The 2,000th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race was held at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Texas on Sunday, March 30, 2003 - the race was won by Ryan Newman (Dodge).
    2,499 - The 2,499th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race was held at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida on Sunday, February 26, 2017 - the race was won by Kurt Busch (Ford).
    2,500 - The 2,500th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race will be held this weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway as the Folds of Honor QuickTrip 500 on Sunday, March 5, 2017.
    2,536 - Number of different drivers to make at least one start in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.(NASCAR)(3-5-2017)


    News from March 4, 2017

    Happy Hour (final) practice for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races at Atlanta Motor Speedway is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top five, slowest and notes:
    #24-Elliott 188.015
    #2-Keselowski 187.602
    #41-Busch 187.576
    #47-Allmendinger 187.519
    #11-Hamlin 187.506
    slowest: #51-Ware 164.628 & #55-Cope 173.864
    best 10 consecutive lap ave #31-Newman 181.429
    notes: no accidents or incidents
    See the fastest speeds, best 10 consecutive lap average, laps run on the Atlanta Happy Hour Practice speeds page (pdf) (3-4-2017)

    Kurt Busch Indy-Charlotte double unlikely in 2017 The club comprised of drivers who have won both the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500 currently has two members - Mario Andretti and A.J. Foyt. Kurt Busch, who won the Daytona 500 last Sunday, may have his sights set on joining that exclusive clique. Three of the of the congratulatory texts Busch received after the Daytona win came from the Andretti clan - Mario, Michael and Marco. It was Michael, you'll recall, who fielded the Andretti Autosport entry Busch drove to a sixth-place finish in the 2014 Indianapolis 500 in his only IndyCar start. Though Busch seems eager to try the Indy/Charlotte double again at some point in his career, scheduling obligations are likely to preclude the possibility this year.(NASCAR Wire Service)[More](3-4-2017)

    Carl Edwards helps Suarez during Friday's pactice at Atlanta Back in January, Carl Edwards stepped away from Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Racing, but apparently it wasn't a giant step. The former driver of the #19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota is still close enough to mentor his successor in the car. In fact, Edwards flew to Atlanta on Friday to offer some assistance and advice. "He's a great guy, very good friend," Suarez said on Friday at Atlanta Motor Speedway. "He just asked me, 'Hey, Daniel, do you want me to go over there? Do you think it would be helpful?' Edwards said he enjoyed helping Suarez but wasn't sure how long he would be at the track.(NASCAR Wire Service)[More](3-4-2017)

    NASCAR clarifies tire rule policy NASCAR has clarified its policy for teams that miss qualifying today at Atlanta Motor Speedway because of inspection problems. After initially telling teams they would be required to start on scuffed tires, NASCAR now will allow teams that miss qualifying to start Sunday's 500-mile race on new tires (commonly referred to as "stickers" because the Goodyear sticker hasn't been scuffed off yet).(NBC Sports)(3-4-2017)

    Race Recap: Kyle Busch wins second straight XFINITY race at Atlanta: It took Kyle Busch 13 years to get his first NASCAR XFINITY Series victory at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It took him one more year to get the second. The pole winner at Atlanta for the sixth time, Busch pulled away after a restart on Lap 148 of 163 and beat Brad Keselowski to the finish line by .605 seconds to score his second straight victory at the 1.54-mile track in Saturday's Rinnai 250. [More](3-4-2017)

    Kyle Busch wins Atlanta XFINITY race: #18-Kyle Busch won the Rinnai 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It is his 87th XFINITY Series win and 1st of the year. #22-Brad Keselowski finished second, followed by #42-Kyle Larson, #41-Kevin Harvick, #1-Elliott Sadler, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #9-William Byron, #2-Austin Dillon, #21-Daniel Hemric, and #48-Brennan Poole.
    Busch started on the pole, led 26 laps on the day and won by .6 seconds.
    #22-Brad Keselowski won the first race stage, #41-Kevin Harvick won the second.
    There were 5 cautions for 26 laps and 6 lead changes among 4 leaders.
    The average speed was 128.435mph.
    Complete results are on the Atlanta race results page (pdf).

    Race stage winners:
    Stage 1 - lap 40 - Winner, #22-Brad Keselowski
    Stage 2 - lap 80 - Winner, #41-Kevin Harvick
    Stage 3 - lap 163 - Race winner, #18-Kyle Busch

    Atlanta XFINITY Race Fast Facts:
    Kyle Busch(i) won the 26th Annual Rinnai 250, his 87th victory in 329 NASCAR XFINITY Series races.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in 2017.
    This is his second victory and 10th top-10 finish in 13 races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    Brad Keselowski(i) (second) posted his sixth top-10 finish in eight races at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It is his second top-10 finish in 2017.
    Kyle Larson(i) (third) posted his fifth top-10 finish in five races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    William Byron (seventh) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Elliott Sadler leads the point standings by 3 points over William Byron #.
    (NASCAR Integrated Marketing)(3-4-2017)

    XFINITY Driver standings following Atlanta:
    1) #1-Elliott Sadler, 70
    2) #9-William Byron, 67, -3
    3) #16-Ryan Reed, 66, -4
    4) #62-Brendan Gaughan, 62, -8
    5) #19-Matt Tifft, 56, -14
    6) #28-Dakoda Armstrong, 47, -23
    7) #48-Brennan Poole, 45, -25
    8) #5-Michael Annett, 45, -25
    9) #21-Daniel Hemric, 42, -28
    10) #01-Harrison Rhodes, 40, -30
    See complete owner and driver standings on the driver standings(pdf) and owner standings page (pdf).(3-4-2017)

    #20 team penalized for qualifying infraction at Atlanta: NASCAR officials announced Saturday that the Joe Gibbs Racing #20 Toyota team in the XFINITY Series had been penalized for an infraction found in Friday night's pre-qualifying inspection at Atlanta Motor Speedway.[More](3-4-2017)

    Race recap: Christopher Bell wins two-lap shootout for Atlanta victory: Christopher Bell unquestionably had the dominant truck in Saturday's Active Pest Control 200, but, in the end, the driver of the No. 4 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota Tundra had to work hard for the third NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory of his career. In the nightcap of a NASCAR doubleheader at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Bell held off fellow Tundra driver Matt Crafton in a two-lap shootout to the finish for his first win of the 2017 season. [More](3-4-2017)

    Bell wins Atlanta: #4-Christopher Bell led 99 of 130 laps at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Saturday, en route to the Active Pest Control 200 win. #88-Matt Crafton took the lead - but only momentarily - following a restart just two laps from the finish. He finished second. #21-Johnny Sauter, #27-Ben Rhodes, #23-Chase Elliott, #24-Alex Bowman, #99-Austin Dillon, #98-Grant Enfinger, #17-Timothy Peters, and #66-Ross Chastain closed out the top-10.
    Bell started from the pole and won the first two stages leading up to his third Camping World Truck Series victory. There were 8 caution flags for 38 laps and 6 lead changes among 4 leaders.
    See results on the Atlanta race results page(3-4-2017)

    Stage Information:
    Stage 1 - 40 laps - Winner, #4-Christopher Bell
    Stage 2 - 80 laps - Winner, #4-Christopher Bell
    Stage 3 - 130 laps - Race winner, #4-Christopher Bell

    Atlanta Truck Series Race Fast Facts:
    Christopher Bell won the 9th Running Active Pest Control 200, his third victory in 32 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
    This is his first victory and second top-10 finish in 2017.
    This is his first victory and first top-10 finish in two races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    Matt Crafton (second) posted his ninth top-10 finish in 16 races at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It is his first top-10 finish in 2017.
    Johnny Sauter (third) posted his third top-10 finish in seven races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    Grant Enfinger (eighth) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Christopher Bell leads the point standings by 7 points over Johnny Sauter.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(3-4-2017)

    Truck Series point standings following Daytona:
    1) #4-Christopher Bell, 93
    2) #21-Johnny Sauter, 86, -7
    3) #27-Ben Rhodes, 86, -7
    4)#33-Kaz Grala, 78, -15
    5) #88-Matt Crafton, 72, -21
    6)) #17-Timothy Peters, 70, -23
    7) #92-Regan Smith, 56, -37
    8) #29-Chase Briscoe, 54, -39
    9) #98-Grant Enfinger, 52, -41
    10) #87-Joe Nemechek, 49, -44
    See complete standings on Driver points standings page and the owner's standings are posted on the Owner points standings page.(3-4-2017)

    Free Pass - Who got a lap back on each caution at Atlanta: (and their finish)
    Caution 1: none
    Caution 2: #49-Chavous, 20th
    Caution 3: #50-Ogata, 32nd
    Caution 4: #52-Friesen, 19th
    Caution 5: #13-Coughlin, 16th
    Caution 6: #52-Friesen, 19th
    Caution 7: #02-Hill, 18th
    Caution 8: #49-Chavous, 20th
    (3-4-2017)

    Bell on pole at Atlanta: #4-Christopher Bell won the pole for Saturday's Active Pest Control 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Bell was fastest at 180.922mph. #51-Kyle Busch will start alongside Bell in row one. #19-Austin Cindric, #29-Chase Briscoe, #24-Alex Bowman, #21-Johnny Sauter, #88-Matt Crafton, #17-Timothy Peters, #23-Chase Elliott, and #18-Noah Gragson close out the top-10 qualifiers.
    #6-Norm Benning, #10-Jennifer Jo Cobb, and #63-JJ Yeley failed to qualify.
    The starting lineup us posted on the Atlanta starting lineup page](3-4-2017)

    Atlanta Qualifying Fast Facts:
    Christopher Bell won the Keystone Light Pole Award for the 9th Running Active Pest Control 200 with a
    lap of 30.643 seconds, 180.922 mph.
    This is his first pole in 32 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
    This is his first pole and second top-10 start in 2017.
    This is his first pole in two races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    Kyle Busch(i) (second) posted his first top-10 start of 2017 and his ninth in nine races at Atlanta Motor
    Speedway.
    Austin Cindric (third) posted his first top-10 start at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It is his first in two races
    this season
    Austin Cindric (third) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(3-4-2017)


    News from March 3, 2017

    Las Vegas close to landing second top-tier NASCAR race? Las Vegas is close to getting a second top-tier NASCAR race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority board of directors scheduled a special meeting Wednesday to consider an annual $2.5 million sponsorship agreement with NASCAR that would include the addition of a fall race at the speedway. Since 1998, NASCAR has had a Las Vegas race, usually in March. This year's race, the Kobalt 400, a part of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup race series, is March 12.(Las Vegas Review Journal), The question would be? which of Speedway Motorsports race tracks would give up a race date (Atlanta, Bristol, Charlotte, Texas, New Hampshire, Sonoma, Kentucky)
    UPDATE 3-3-2017 NASCAR issued a statement from Jim Cassidy, senior vice president of Racing Operations and NASCAR Event Management, that said: "We are constantly working with promoters to discuss and develop NASCAR schedules. We have not finalized any schedules for 2018 or beyond, but will announce them as they become final." Las Vegas Motor Speedway, which has hosted one Cup race a year since 1998, issued a statement that read: "All of the information regarding a potential sponsorship opportunity between Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority can be found at www.lvcva.com. When there is more information to provide, we will do so subsequent to the LVCVA Board of Directors meeting on March 8."(NBC Sports)(3-3-2017)

    Harvick wins Atlanta pole: #4-Kevin Harvick won the Coors Light pole for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway with speed of 190.398mph for his 1st pole of 2017, 2nd at Atlanta and 18th of his career. Harvick has won 5 times from the 17 previous poles.
    #31-Newman will start 2nd followed by #31-Newman, #18-Busch, #17-Stenhouse Jr., #2-Keselowski, #22-Logano, #1-McMurray, #42-Larson, #78-Truex Jr., #11-Hamlin, #24-Elliott and #88-Earnhardt Jr.
    #31-Newman was fastest in the second round with a speed of 189.772mph, will start 2nd
    #18-Busch was fastest in the first round with a speed of 190.280mph, will start 3rd
    Driver(s) who will miss the race: none as 39 were entered for 40 spots
    See round-by-round qualifying results on the Atlanta qualifying results page (pdf) and the complete starting lineup on the Atlanta Starting Lineup page (pdf).(3-3-2017)

    With stellar final lap, Kevin Harvick wins Atlanta pole: Kevin Harvick saved his best lap for the best possible moment on Friday afternoon, putting his #4 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford on the pole for Sunday's Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. In the third and final round of knockout qualifying for the second Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race of the season, Harvick toured the 1.54-mile track in 29.118 seconds (190.398 mph) to post the fastest lap of the entire qualifying session. In winning his second pole at Atlanta and the 18th of his career, Harvick edged Ryan Newman (189.870 mph) by .081 seconds.
    "In the last run there, I was able to carry more speed and do some things with the car that I wasn't able to do in the first two runs," Harvick said. "At that point I just didn't want to screw it up, because I felt like I'd gotten to the green, which I didn't do in the second round. I got to the green good, I got through (Turns) 1 and 2 good. I just needed to hit the bottom and get that left front on the line so that it would hook and get up off the corner. That was by far the best of the three laps, and we saved it perfectly for the end."
    Newman, who hasn't won a pole since the fall race at New Hampshire in 2013, failed to add to his career total of 51 and failed to break his tie with the late Buddy Baker for most poles at Atlanta (seven). Newman's #31 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet was second fastest behind Kyle Busch's #18 Toyota in the opening round of the time trial and fastest in the second round. "We were so close," Newman said. "I really wanted to beat my old buddy Buddy Baker's record there. Been tied with him for a while, so that was kind of rough. But I'm just proud of the guys and proud of the effort. It is the litmus test for us for a lot of the rest of the season. It was a good start for sure."
    Busch qualified third at 189.850 mph, followed by Ricky Stenhouse Jr., and Team Penske teammates Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano in fifth and sixth, respectively.
    Four cars failed to make qualifying attempts because of inspection issues, and another -- the #33 of Jeffrey Earnhardt -- had engine issues. Accordingly, Earnhardt, Michael McDowell, Cole Whitt, Derrike Cope and Cody Ware will start from the final five positions in the 39-car field.(NASCAR Wire Service)(3-3-2017)

    Atlanta-Motor Speedway - Qualifying Fast Facts:
    #4-Kevin Harvick won the Coors Light Pole Award for the 58th Annual Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 with a lap of 29.118 seconds, 190.398 mph.
    This is his 18th pole in 576 NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series races.
    This is his first pole and second top-10 start in 2017.
    This is his second pole in 27 races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    #31-Ryan Newman (second) posted his first top-10 start of 2017 and his 18th in 25 races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
    #18-Kyle Busch (third) posted his 13th top-10 start at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It is his first in two races this season.
    #19-Daniel Suarez (21st) was the fastest qualifying rookie.
    (NASCAR Statistics)(3-3-2016)

  • Second Round of Qualifying for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is over, after 10 scheduled minutes.
    #31-Newman 189.772
    #18-Busch 189.694
    #4-Harvick 189.519
    #2-Keselowski 188.925
    #42-Larson 188.751
    the rest of the top 12: 11 78 24 22 1 17 88
    out of the top 12 and not advancing to round 3: 41 21 6 20 27 48 3 47 19 32 77 10
    (3-3-2017)

    First Round of Qualifying for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is over, after 20 scheduled minutes.
    #18-Busch 190.280
    #31-Newman 189.850
    #1-McMurray 189.571
    #11-Hamlin 189.526
    #4-Harvick 189.396
    the rest of the top 24: 41 6 24 17 47 42 19 32 21 78 3 27 2 22 48 88 10 77;
    out of the top 24 and not advancing to round 2:
    Drivers who will miss the race: none, 39 entered
    (3-3-2017)

    Coverage of Qualifying for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is scheduled for Friday, March 3, 2017 at 5:45pm/et.
    Television (TV): FS1, 5:30pm/et
    Radio: Live online at Performance Racing Network (PRN)
    Scheduled Qualifying Re-Air: Saturday, March 4 at 7:30am/et on FS1

    Qualifying Order for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is posted. 39 drivers for 40 spots.
    The first driver to be lined up on pit road will be #41-Busch.
    The final driver lined up on pit road will be #51-Cody Ware.
    The order is set by a random draw, how cars park on pit road before they qualify, held about an hour before the first practice.
    After the first round, the cars lined up by speed.
    For the qualifying order, see the Qualifying Order page (pdf).(3-3-2016)

    Friday practice for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway is over, after 85 scheduled minutes, the top-five and notes:
    #31-Newman 187.875
    #1-McMurray 187.735
    #18-Busch 187.595
    #20-Kenseth 187.494
    #17-Stenhouse Jr. 187.487
    slowest: #51-Ware 168.036 & #33-JEarnhardt 171.249
    most laps run: #4-Harvick, 34; #23-Gaulding, 27
    #4-Harvick has the best 10 consecutive laps ave at 179.977
    See fastest speeds, laps run on the Atlanta Practice 1 Speeds page (pdf)(3-3-2017)

    Cole Whitt Continues Partnership with Rinnai TriStar Motorsports announced that Rinnai, the number-one selling brand of tankless water heater in the U.S. and Canada, has committed to serve as the primary sponsor of the #72 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series [image shows Toyota, but in a Chevy at Atlanta after running Ford in Daytona] with driver Cole Whitt for this weekend's race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Their primary sponsorship will also include Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the second race at New Hampshire Speedway in addition to an associate sponsorship placement for all other races for the remainder of the 2017 season.(TriStar Motorsports PR)[More](3-3-2017)

    2,500th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Race Sunday's Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway marks the 2,500th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race. Below are some stats from the first 2,499 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races. The first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race was held at Charlotte Speedway in Charlotte, North Carolina on June 19, 1949 - the race was won by Jim Roper (Lincoln)
    · 186 drivers have won a race
    · The series has competed on 156 different tracks
    · 234 different drivers have won a Coors Light Pole
    · 2,536 drivers have made a start.[MORE](3-3-2017)

    Dale Earnhardt Jr. Likes NASCAR's Five-Minute Rule: Racing Wrecked Car 'Sucks' With all eyes on Dale Earnhardt Jr. at the Daytona 500 as he made his return to racing, it only was fitting he was the first to fall prey to NASCAR's new Damaged Vehicle Policy. Despite the fact that it forced him to end his day early, though, Dale Jr. said he's in favor of the rule. During the Hendrick Motorsports driver's weekly podcast, "Dale Jr. Download," he explained he's very much in favor of NASCAR's updated regulation. Under the policy, teams have just five minutes from the time the car enters pit road to repair damaged sheet metal, body parts no longer can be replaced and any car that has to go to the garage or behind the pit wall for repairs isn't able to return to the track. Additionally, if a team gets the car repaired and on track in under five minutes, it must maintain a minimum speed throughout the race, or the driver will be required to return to the pits. "So, thoughts on the five-minute clock? I'm good with it," Earnhardt said. "I didn't want to drive that car anymore, if I'm not out there with a good car, competing and trying to win. "My top reason is because it just sucks; it's boring. That goes in the boring bucket."(NESN Fuel)[More](3-3-2017)

    a look at some of the top statistical performers and top-10 driver ratings at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, GA going into the Fold Of Honor QuikTrip 500 on March 5, 2017, see the stats on the Statistical Advance - Analyzing the Folds of Honor QuickTrip 500 page

    SiriusXM to sponsor #77 Erik Jones at Atlanta The season-in-one-race atmosphere that is the Daytona 500 is now in the rearview mirror for Erik Jones, with his focus recalibrated to this week's race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Jones and Furniture Row Racing's #77 Toyota Camry team will also be sporting a different uniform and paint scheme for this weekend's Folds of Honor Quiktrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. SiriusXM will be the primary sponsor as part of a two-race partnership, with the second race yet to be announced. 5-hour ENERGY is scheduled as the primary sponsor of the #77 Toyota for 22 races and Sport Clips will have four during Jones' NASCAR Cup Series rookie campaign. Sponsorship for the balance of the races will be announced at a later date (Furniture Row Racing PR)[More](3-3-2017)

    Hendrick Motorsports goes for third straight Atlanta win Georgia has been "peachy" to Hendrick Motorsports in recent memory. The four-car outfit owned by Rick Hendrick has won the last three races at Atlanta Motor Speedway behind the efforts of #5-Kasey Kahne (2014) and #48-Jimmie Johnson (2015-16). On Sunday, Hendrick Motorsports will go for its fourth consecutive win at the 1.54-mile track as it travels to AMS with Kahne, Johnson, Georgia native #24-Chase Elliott and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 (NASCAR Wire Service)[More](3-3-2017)

    Kyle Busch paces final XFINITY practice: #18-Kyle Busch was quickest in final practice at Atlanta Motor Speedway with a speed of 179.528mph.
    #41-Kevin Harvick was second, followed by: #98-Aric Almirola, #20-Denny Hamlin, #21-Daniel Hemric, #48-Brennan Poole, #42-Kyle Larson, #22-Brad Keselowski, #1-Elliott Sadler, and #23-Spencer Gallagher.
    40 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Atlanta final practice speeds page (pdf).(3-3-2017)

    Daniel Hemric leads second XFINITY practice: #21-Daniel Hemric was quickest in the second XFINITY Series practice at Atlanta Motor Speedway at 179.621mph.
    #98-Aric Almirola was second, then #00-Cole Custer, #22-Brad Keselowski, #6-Darrell Wallace, Jr., #41-Kevin Harvick, #18-Kyle Busch, #9-William Byron, #19-Matt Tifft & #48-Brennan Poole.
    #33-Brandon Jones hit the outside wall early in practice and will go to a backup car.
    41 drivers were on track during the session.
    See complete results on the Atlanta second practice speeds page (pdf).(3-3-2017)

    Aric Almirola fastest in first XFINITY practice: #98-Aric Almirola was fastest during opening practice at Atlanta Motor Speedway with a speed of 181.372mph.
    The rest of the top 10:
    #18-Kyle Busch, #41-Kevin Harvick, #22-Brad Keselowski, #23-Spencer Gallagher, #42-Kyle Larson, #0-Cole Custer, #19-Matt Tifft, #2-Austin Dillon, and #16-Ryan Reed.
    35 drivers practiced during the session.
    See complete results on the Atlanta practice 1 speeds page (pdf).(3-3-2017)

    Lilly Diabetes Becomes 'Official Diabetes Health Partner of NASCAR: NASCAR and Lilly Diabetes announced that Lilly is expanding its involvement in NASCAR with a multi-year official partnership with the sanctioning body. The new collaboration designates Lilly Diabetes as the "Official Diabetes Health Partner of NASCAR." The partnership with Lilly Diabetes builds upon its primary sponsorship of the #16 Ford Mustang driven by Roush Fenway Racing's Ryan Reed, who last weekend won his second career NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Daytona International Speedway. Additionally, as a part of this new partnership, Lilly Diabetes will work with NASCAR on multiple health and wellness initiatives.[More](3-3-2017)

    Rinnai sponsoring Clements at Atlanta:Jeremy Clements Racing announces Rinnai, the number-one selling brand of tankless water heater in the U.S. and Canada, has committed to serve as the primary sponsor of the No. 51 Xfinity Series entry with driver Jeremy Clements for this weekend's race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. [More](3-3-2017)

    Elliott fastest in final Atlanta Truck practice:#23-Chase Elliott was fastest in the final practice session leading up to Saturday's Camping World Truck Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Elliott had a fast lap at 179.557mph. #29-Chase Briscoe, #4-Christopher Bell, #8-John Hunter Nemechek, #18-Noah Gragson, #24-Alex Bowman, #88-Matt Crafton, #13-Cody Coughlin, #19-Austin Cindric, and #5-Korbin Forrister. 34 trucks practiced during the session. See complete results on the Practice 3 speeds (pdf)(3-3-2017)

    Bell fastest in second Atlanta Truck practice:#4-Christopher Bell was fastest during the second practice for the Active Pest Control 200, with a speed of at 180.357mph. #21-Johnny Sauter was second on the speed chart, followed by #29-Chase Briscoe, #7-Brett Moffitt, #27-Ben Rhodes, #18-Noah Gragson, #51-Kyle Busch, #88-Matt Crafton, #52-Stewart Friesen, and #75-Parker Kligerman. 34 trucks practiced during the session. See complete results on the Practice 2 speeds (pdf)(3-3-2017)

    Briscoe fastest in opening Atlanta Truck practice:#29-Chase Briscoe was fastest during the opening practice for Saturday's Camping World Truck Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway at 181.082mph. #18-Noah Gragson, #24-Alex Bowman, #4-Christopher Bell, #23-Chase Elliott, #19-Austin Cindric, #88-Matt Crafton, #21-Johnny Sauter, #33-Kaz Grala, and #5-Korbin Forrister were the remainder of the top-10. 26 of the entered 35 trucks practiced. See complete results on the Practice 1 speeds (pdf)(3-3-2017)


    News from March 2, 2017

    Chase Elliott Launches Chase Elliott Foundation #24-Chase Elliott announced the launch of the Chase Elliott Foundation with the unveiling of special, children-designed racing shoes that Elliott and his three Hendrick Motorsports teammates will wear during this weekend's NASCAR races at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The racing shoes are the result of the "Design 2 Drive 4 Children's" art design collaboration with Children's Healthcare of Atlanta (Children's), the largest healthcare provider for children in Georgia. Patients at Children's submitted color sketches of racing shoes with a summer camp theme and five drawings were selected to be replicated on Alpinestars racing shoes and worn by the Hendrick teammates at Atlanta. Each of the five racing shoes are being auctioned off online for ten days beginning today. Auction proceeds go to benefit the summer camp program that Children's runs for its large patient network. At the special announcement today at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston, a children's hospital facility in Atlanta, the Chase Elliott Foundation also presented Children's with a check for $24,000, collected from proceeds of a 24-day holiday online auction program conducted this past December. In doing so, Chase Elliott Foundation Executive Director Cindy Elliott told the crowd of assembled Children's staff, patients and family of the non-profit organization's mission to helping others live healthier, happier lives. For more information, visit ChaseElliott.com/foundation. [More](3-2-2017)

    Cody Ware set for Cup Series debut at Atlanta Motor Speedway Cody Ware will set a huge milestone this weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway, as the third-generation racer is set to make his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) debut in Sunday's Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500. Ware will drive the #51 Spoonful of Music / BUBBA burger Chevy for Rick Ware Racing. Joining Ware for his Cup Series as the primary marketing partner of his #51 Chevy is Spoonful of Music. Based in Greensboro, N.C., Spoonful of Music is committed to helping chronically ill children to escape the bonds of their diseases through musical expression. Kids are given hands-on experience with musical instruments and recording equipment, offering them a creative outlet for the emotions they feel as a result of their daily struggles. Veteran Joe Lax is leading RWR's return to Cup Series competition this season.(RWR)[More](3-2-2017)

    Kyle Busch to run Snickers Crisper scheme at Atlanta In his 10th season with Toyota flagship Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR), Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 SNICKERS Crisper Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR), returns to Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend, the place where the winning began in 2008 with JGR, Mars Inc. and its SNICKERS brand, and Toyota. Back in 2008, his first year with JGR, Busch headed to Atlanta for the fourth Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race of the season aiming to bring home his first win for the team's two new partners - Mars Chocolate North America and Toyota. This weekend, Busch will also have the SNICKERS Crisper scheme along for the ride once again after the scheme debuted last August at Watkins Glen International. The SNICKERS Crisper is "crispy satisfaction" in the form of crisped rice and peanuts, topped with a layer of caramel and coated in creamy SNICKERS brand milk chocolate. A singles pack of SNICKERS Crisper contains two squares that are less than 100 calories each. See more images on the #18 Team Schemes page [More](3-2-2017)

    Blickensderfer fined for missing lug nut after Daytona 500 NASCAR released its weekly Post-Event Penalty Report, this week for Daytona International Speedway, only one penalty was announced: Drew Blickensderfer, the crew chief for #43-Aric Almirola of Richard Pettyt Motorsports, was fined $10,000 for Lug nut(s) not properly installed at Daytona 500 post-race inspection. Of note, ESPN's Bob Pockrass mentioned in a Tweet that two lug nuts not properly installed is a one race suspension, three lug nuts not properly installed is a 35 point driver/owner points penalty AND a three-race suspension.(3-2-2017)

    MOOG announces new name for its weekly Crew Chief Award: MOOG, the "Official Steering and Suspension Partner of NASCAR" and leading brand from Federal-Mogul Motorparts, announced the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series 'MOOG Go the Extra Mile' Award will be presented following each race to the crew chief whose car posts the largest increase in average lap speed from the first half to the second half of the race while finishing on the lead lap. Congratulations to Keith Rodden, crew chief for Kasey Kahne and the #5 Chevy SS, for winning the first MOOG Go the Extra Mile Award for 2017. At the end of the 2017 season, MOOG will present a $100,000 award to the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series crew chief with the most weekly wins throughout the 36-race schedule [More](3-2-2017)

    New hauler parade route and Fan Fest at Auto Club Speedway What: Back by popular demand, FanFest welcomes the community to celebrate Auto Club Speedway's 20th Anniversary and to kick-off the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Auto Club 400 race weekend. The signature parade of over 40 NASCAR Haulers has a new route throughout the facility where fans can wave, take photos and cheer for their favorite NASCAR driver and race team. The free community event features NASCAR driver appearances on the main stage, live music, vendors and family-friendly entertainment in the O'Reilly Auto Parts Fan Zone at Auto Club Speedway.[More](3-2-2017)

    Ty Majeski to make XFINITY debut at Iowa: The NASCAR season started last week. For Ty Majeski it won't for another couple of months yet. His Xfinity Series debut is set for June 24 at Iowa Speedway[More](3-2-2017)

    Jacob Companies to sponsor Chip Ganassi Racing in multiple races: Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) announced an expanded partnership with Florida-based Jacob Companies - a multifaceted construction firm with a focus on construction, design and technology services - across the team's NASCAR platform. Jacob will serve as the primary partner on Kyle Larson's #42 Chevrolet Camaro for the NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend and in multiple races in 2017.[More](3-2-2017)

    Johnsonville sponsoring Road American XFINITY race: The Aug. 27 Xfinity Series event will be the Johnsonville 180 after Wisconsin-based Johnsonville Sausage increased its involvement from being a presenting sponsor, the track announced Wednesday.[More](3-2-2017)

    Lugnut penalty for #01 team after Daytona: NASCAR released its weekly Post-Event Penalty Report, this week for Daytona International Speedway, only one penalty was announced: Patrick Magee, the crew chief for #01-Harrison Rhodes of JD Motorsports, was fined $5,000.[More](3-2-2017)

    AM Racing to skip Atlanta following runner-up effort at Daytona: AM Racing team principal Tim Self released a statement on the team's decision not to participate in Saturday afternoon's Active Pest Control 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) race at Atlanta (Ga.) Motor Speedway. "AM Racing is dedicated to building a longstanding platform that will allow to be around for years to come. With that vision comes sacrifices. Collectively, we have decided to forgo our entry in Saturday afternoon's race and focus on upcoming races."[More](3-2-2017)

    Martinsville, Pocono coverage moved to FOX: FOX Sports announced that a pair of 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races will now air on the FOX broadcast network - Martinsville on Saturday, April 1 (3:00 PM ET) and Pocono on Saturday, July 29 (1:00 PM ET). The events join the Oct. 14 NCWTS race from Talladega on the FOX calendar, with the remainder of the season airing on FS1. [More](3-2-2017)

    Hill partners with Young's Motorsports for 2017:Austin Hill looks to kick off his 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season this weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway, under the banner of longtime series competitors Young's Motorsports. The Winston, G.A. native will compete in the No. 02 Ford F150 for 12 scheduled races while Tyler Young rounds out the other 11. [More](3-2-2017)


    News from March 1, 2017

    SunnyD Kicks Off The Season at Atlanta with Stenhouse Jr. SunnyD will adorn the #17 Ford this weekend for the Folds of Honor Quik Trip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway, where Ricky Stenhouse Jr. scored his first Cup Series pole award in 2013. "I'm really looking forward to this weekend, especially since we have SunnyD back on our #17 Ford," Stenhouse said. "Last year, a lot of fans told me how much they liked the bright colors on our SunnyD Ford. We finished 10th at Atlanta last year so hopefully we can have another strong showing this weekend."[More](3-1-2017)

    Cup Series to qualify and race same day at Watkins Glen Watkins Glen International has announced the official race weekend schedule for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series, and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East tripleheader weekend, August 3-6. This year's event will feature an enhanced Sunday lineup featuring Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series qualifying at 12:35pm/et, just hours prior to the start of the 90-lap race which goes green at 3:00pm/et. The NASCAR K&N Pro Series East 100 and NASCAR XFINITY Series Zippo 200 will take center stage on Friday, August 4th and Saturday, August 5th, with the sport's up-and-coming stars taking on the historic 2.45-mile road course in search of a precious win and points that could propel their team in the hunt for a championship (WGI)[More](3-1-2017]

    Cosmo Motors to Join Go Fas Racing in 2017 Go Fas Racing announced that Cosmo Motors will be joining Matt DiBenedetto and the #32 team as a primary sponsor for multiple races in the 2017 season. The Cosmo Motors shield will don the #32 Ford Fusion at the Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway in March and again at the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway in May. Cosmo Motors will also be represented as an associate sponsor on the #32 team throughout the 2017 season. Cosmo Motors is a family owned and operated pre-owned car dealership out of Hickory, North Carolina specializing in performance, luxury, exotic, and other high-end vehicles and has been a sponsor of Matt DiBenedetto since 2015 (Go Fas Racing). See image of the scheme on the #32 Team Schemes page [More](3-1-2017]

    Cup to qualify and race same day at Martinsville Speedway As Martinsville Speedway celebrates its 70th anniversary in 2017, fans will get more value for their ticket to the fall race, as the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will qualify and race on the same day, Sunday, October 29. Saturday will have an "old-school" feel as well, as NASCAR will return to a true "happy hour" practice session, immediately following the Alpha Energy Solutions 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. All kids 12-and-under are admitted free on Saturday. Martinsville Speedway and NASCAR are also planning a fan event on Friday, October 27, featuring some of NASCAR's top stars. More information on the event will be available in the coming months.[More](3-1-2017)

    Dr Pepper and BK Racing celebrate 6th year together BK Racing welcomes Dr Pepper back for its sixth consecutive year in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Dr Pepper is the longest running partner for the team. The iconic soft drink brand, which first teamed up with BK Racing in 2011, will be back on board the #23 Toyota with driver Gray Gaulding as a primary sponsor for multiple races throughout the 2017 NASCAR season, beginning with the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. In addition, Dr Pepper will remain on board all of the BK Racing cars as an associate sponsor all year long.[More](3-1-2017)

    Sieg gets associate sponsor for Atlanta: RSS Racing is pleased to welcome Jonathan Richards Band as an associate sponsor for the NASCAR XFINITY race at Atlanta this Saturday. The popular Georgia band has deep roots in country, southern rock, bluegrass, and country gospel.[More](3-1-2017)

    Axalta expands partnership with JRM: JR Motorsports announced today that Axalta Coating Systems, a longtime partner and the team's official paint supplier, will join William Byron and the No. 9 team as primary partner in 15 NASCAR Xfinity Series events in each of the next two seasons. The multi-year agreement will see Byron debut the No. 9 Axalta Chevrolet Camaro at Phoenix Raceway (March 18). Axalta joins Liberty University (17 races) as co-primary sponsors of Byron and JRM's No. 9 team. Both partners will combine to fill out the bulk of Byron's 33-race NXS schedule.[More](3-1-2017)