May 15, 2009

Truck: Hornaday wins at Lowe's

Ron Hornaday used new tires late in the Lowe's race and held off Kyle Busch to win a crash-marred Camping World Truck Series race. It was his 40th Truck victory.

Our View: Notable others included Ryan Newman, which we predicted before the start of the race, and Matt Crafton in third.

Truck: Point-leader Skinner takes hard hit

The Camping World Truck Series points' leader Mike Skinner took a vicious hit after he tried to make a questionable pass on Johnny Sauter on lap 35 of the Lowe's race and spun in front of T.J. Bell. Skinner ended up on his lid.

Our View: He'll take a huge hit in the standings, but Skinner keyed the mike and told the crew he was o.k. before exiting the truck.

All-Star Race Lineup

No one is particularly surprised that Jimmie Johnson won the pole for Saturday night's All-Star race. Even with a curveball of a pit stop and three-lap qualification format, the cream rises to the top.

Kurt Busch in second and Matt Kenseth in third were the only drivers to break up the Hendrick Motorsports juggernaut at the top of the grid, however, since Dale Earnhardt Jr., Mark Martin and Jeff Gordon settled into positions fourth through sixth. All of these drivers had flawless qualification sessions.

The same could not be said about Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards and Jeff Burton who were penalized for a variety of reasons. Tony Stewart forgot the team was changing four tires and had to back up to complete service and Denny Hamlin broke a transmission, which contributed to their poor starting spots.

All-Star Lineup
StartDriverAvg. StartAvg. FinAttempts
1Jimmie Johnson10.715.007
2Kurt Busch7.5713.437
3Matt Kenseth8.257.008
4Dale Earnhardt Jr13.447.569
5Mark Martin8.3813.2421
6Jeff Gordon8.7110.8817
7Bobby Labonte8.8113.2516
8Kasey Kahne12.0013.006
9Kevin Harvick7.7511.258
10Brad Keselowski

11Greg Biffle8.8015.176
12Ryan Newman9.007.577
13Kyle Busch4.7521.504
14Carl Edwards10.0012.754
15Tony Stewart11.408.2010
16Jeff Burton12.0017.2917
17Clint Bowyer16.3324.673
18Denny Hamlin10.0020.673

All-Star qualification penalties

The following drivers earned penalties in All-Star qualification: Greg Biffle (5 seconds for a loose lugnut), Kyle Busch (5 seconds for a loose lugnut), Carl Edwards (15 seconds for three loose lugnuts) and Jeff Burton (20 second for speeding on pit road).

Our View: To win the pole in All-Star qualification, a driver has to have a perfect stop as well as a fast car.

Johnson wins All-Star pole

Jimmie Johnson set the fastest time in All-Star qualification, with a time of 121.42 seconds.

Our View: Johnson continues to own this track. He's the closest thing to a must have for your fantasy All-Star lineup.

Truck: Lowe's lineup has posted the starting lineup for the Lowe's Camping World Truck Series race.

Our View: There are some fast Trucks up front, but Ryan Newman and David Gilliland on row 10 cannot be completely ignored.

Showdown qualification canceled

Qualification for the Sprint Showdown has been canceled and the field will be set based on how the drivers drew for time trials.

Our View: This sprint race can be dramatic and now that fast cars will be sprinkled throughout the field, it's going to get even more exciting.

Truck qualification rained out

Craftsman Truck Series qualification has been rained out, so Friday night's event will be set by points.

Our View: That puts Kyle Busch on the pole, and if you didn't think he was a favorite already, his odds just improved. He won this race back-to-back in 2005/2006. Click here for the average finish during the last five years.

Johnson wins All-Star practice

Jimmie Johnson posted the fastest single lap in practice for the All-Star race, with a lap of 183.393 mph.

Our View: Is this surprising to anyone out there? Johnson has owned Lowe's Motor Speedway in recent years and the exhibition race has not been an exception.

All-Star Showdown practice speeds has posted the practice speeds from the All-Star practice, along with average speeds when possible.

Our View: Since NASCAR's TrackPass Leaderboard does not archive, this is a great source for the information.

Allmendinger fastest in Showdown practice

A.J. Allmendinger posted the fastest single lap in All-Star practice with a speed of 182.223 mph.

Our View: In normal conditions, we are also concerned with how quick a car is during longer runs—but this is a sprint to the checkers and the Dinger's fast speed makes him a favorite to advance in the All-Star race on Saturday night.

Shelmerdine wrecks in All-Star practice

Kirk Shelmerdine became the first casualty of All-Star practice when he slapped the wall in the closing minutes.

Our View: A total of 35 cars will try to qualify for the Showdown, so he should be able to make the race and earn at least last place money. That should pay to have the right side of the car repaired.

Reddin resigns from RPM

Tom Reddin has resigned from his post as CEO of Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM), according to

Our View: Reddin has taken much of the heat leveled at RPM. A former CEO of Lending Tree, he may have found out how difficult this sport can be to industry outsiders. It is unlikely that Foster Gillet will help this team perform much better in the short term and the organization needs to look for someone who knows racing.

Truck: Lowe's, 5-yr avg. finish

Lowe's is made up of some interesting finishes from part time drivers, which is why A.J. Allmendinger and Carl Edwards sit atop the five-year average finish chart for the Craftsman Truck Series. Why is this important? Because Ryan Newman looks to add his name to this list.

Among drivers entered this weekend, Kyle Busch has the best average finish of 5.25 during the last two years and that is highlighted by back-to-back victories in 2005 and 2006.

Matt Crafton might be your best value this week, however. He's never finished outside the top-10 in all six races run on this track.

Five-year Avg. Finish

DriverAvg Finish20082007200620052004
A J Allmendinger2.00

Carl Edwards 2.00

Michael Waltrip 5.00

Kyle Busch5.2581111
Shane Hmiel 6.00

Matt Crafton 6.8017899
Terry Cook 8.006162214
Mark Martin8.50

Dennis Setzer 8.80722771
Landon Cassill9.009

T J Bell9.00

Aric Almirola9.00


Ron Hornaday Jr10.00231511
Ricky Craven 10.00

Rick Crawford 11.6051011257
Chad McCumbee11.6721815

Jimmy Spencer Sr12.00

Travis Kvapil 13.001813

Ted Musgrave Sr13.002254331
Frank Kimmel 13.00

Johnny Benson Jr13.501127124
Todd Bodine 13.8012333120
Aaron Fike14.00

Erik Darnell14.6743010

Brendan Gaughan15.00335148
Colin Braun15.0015

Tyler Walker15.00

Steve Park 15.00

Andy Lally16.0016

Kevin Harvick 16.00

Boston Reid16.00


Butch Miller 16.00

Tim Sauter 17.00

Kyle Krisiloff17.00


David Starr 17.60172326193
Mike Skinner 18.00108312615
Ken Schrader18.001312
Jon Wood 18.0019

Tracy Hines18.00

Erin Crocker18.00


Chase Montgomery18.50

Robert Huffman 18.50

Bobby Hamilton Sr19.00

Andy Houston 19.00

Mike Bliss19.50

David Reutimann19.67

Blake Bjorkland20.00

Todd Kluever20.00

Kerry Earnhardt20.00


Brandon Whitt20.50

Willie Allen21.00

Bobby Hamilton Jr21.00


Bill Lester21.75
Robert Pressley 22.00

Joey Miller22.00


Hank Parker Jr22.00

Ken Weaver23.00

Clay Rogers 23.50
Marc Mitchell24.0024

Shane Huffman24.00

Kraig Kinser24.00

Brad Keselowski24.00

Bobby East24.00


Kevin Hamlin25.00

Tina Gordon 25.00

Kelly Sutton26.33

Timothy Peters26.6725
Jack Sprague 27.001434342726
Shelby Howard27.0020

Geoff Bodine 27.00

Stacy Compton28.0028

J C Stout28.003026

Mark McFarland 28.00

Brian Sockwell 29.0029

Charlie Bradberry29.00

Johnny Chapman29.00


Scott Lagasse Jr29.5027

Sean Murphy29.50

Chad Chaffin 29.7521
John Mickel31.0031

Joey Clanton31.00

Jason White31.502637

Justin Marks32.0032

Bryan Silas32.00

Shane Sieg32.00

David Ragan32.50

Scott Speed33.0033

Tony Stewart 33.00

Donny Lia34.0034

Shigeaki Hattori34.00

Brian Scott35.0035

Regan Smith 35.00

Dana White 35.00

Carl Long35.00


Justin Hobgood36.00

Marcos Ambrose36.00


Derrike Cope 37.0036

Jimmy Kite37.00

Robert Richardson37.00


Deborah Renshaw38.00

Nick Tucker38.6737
Nicholas Tucker38.6737
J R Patton39.00


Wayne Edwards 39.5038

Mike Harmon 42.00


Truck: Hornaday tops Lowe's practice

Ron Hornaday Jr. topped both practice sessions for tonight's Craftsman Truck Series race at Lowe's. Practice one (in which Hornaday went 178.412 mph) and Practice two (177.696 mph) speeds can be found at

Our View: Among Cup regulars, David Gilliland was best with the fourth best time in Practice two. Ryan Newman was seventh best in that same session.

TRG commits to full schedule

The Racer's Group has committed to running the full NASCAR schedule, according to David Gilliland will continue to drive the entry.

Our View: Fans will be happy to see someone who wants to be in the show badly enough to finance the effort out of their pocket. Fantasy owners, however, will want to wait until this organization gets a little more funding before committing their resources.

IRL: Now or never for next 11

It's now or never for 11 more drivers who still have to qualify for the Indy 500, according to

Our View: There are still some pretty big names on the outside looking in, including Alex Tagliani, John Andretti and Milka Duno, but fantasy owners should have serious concerns about their ability to find enough speed to earn a roster spot.

F1: Hamilton hopes to turn season around

Lewis Hamilton believes his team can reverse their fortunes, according to an interview at

Our View: After such a big high last year, he's been one of the biggest fantasy disappointments in 2009, but if you jumped off his bandwagon fast enough, he could be a great value in the second half of the season.

IRL: Servia, Bell best non qualifiers

Oriol Servia and Townsend Bell have been fastest in practice this week among drivers who still need to qualify for the Indy 500 this weekend, according to

Our View: In the unique Indy 500 qualification procedures, there is plenty of time to practice for both time trials and the race. If they cannot get the car dialed in with so many sessions, there is simply not any speed to be found in the car.