May 17, 2009

Busch wins Camping World race

Third times the charm for Busch

For the third consecutive year, a NASCAR regular has made the overnight trip from the All-Star race in Charlotte to compete in a combination Camping World East/West race at Iowa Speedway. Kevin Harvick and Kasey Kahne failed to beat the lower division regulars, but Kyle Busch finally proved their master in the 2009 edition of the Long John Silver 200.

Our View: If anyone was going to do it, fantasy owners won't be surprised that Busch was the first. The Nationwide Series will head to Iowa for an inaugural race this year and Busch now has some seat time on that track. Brian Ickler and David Mayhew finished second and third.

2009 Indy 500 Lineup

Four grueling days of qualification are in the books and the field is set for the most prestigious race of the year.

We've known for a while that Helio Castroneves has the pole and over the course of his career, he's done a great job of finishing what he starts on this track.

John Andretti and Ryan Hunter-Reay provide the drama on bump day by becoming the last two drivers to make the field.

Notable others include all three female drivers. Danica Patrick qualified in 10th on the first day of time trials; Sarah Fisher made the show on day two in 21st and Milka Duno had to wait until the final day to know she was in the show in 31st.

Indy 500 Lineup

StartDriverAvg. FinAvg. StartAttempts
1Helio Castroneves6.755.638
2Ryan Briscoe12.6711.333
3Dario Franchitti9.4011.405
4Graham Rahal33.0013.001
5Scott Dixon9.676.506
6Tony Kanaan12.433.717
7Mario Moraes18.0028.001
8Marco Andretti9.6714.003
9Will Power13.0023.001
10Danica Patrick10.506.754
11Alex Lloyd25.0019.001
12Raphael Matos

13Paul Tracy2.0029.001
14Vitor Meira7.0012.176
15Justin Wilson27.0016.001
16Hideki Mutoh7.009.001
17Ed Carpenter15.0015.605
18Dan Wheldon10.175.676
19Anthony Foyt IV17.5024.502
20Scott Sharp16.279.0911
21Sarah Fisher26.5718.297
22Davey Hamilton12.3816.138
23Robert Doornbos

24Townsend Bell16.0013.502
25Oriol Servia11.0025.001
26Tomas Scheckter18.0010.717
27Mike Conway

28John Andretti23.0022.502
29E J Viso26.0026.001
30Bruno Junqueira18.2010.405
31Milka Duno25.0028.002
32Nelson Phillippe

33Ryan Hunter-Reay6.0020.001
DNQAlex Tagliani

DNQBuddy Lazier11.2317.7713
DNQStanton Barrett

IRL: Three fail to qualify for 500

Alex Tagliani, Buddy Lazier and Stanton Barrett failed to qualify for the Indy 500.

Our View: None of these drivers were likely to make it onto your roster, but that doesn't reduce the sting to their fans.

IRL: Indy 500 field is set

In a dramatic Bump Day, John Andretti and Ryan Hunter-Reay became the last two drivers to qualify for the Indy 500. has the complete grid posted.

Our View: Andretti may have had the biggest up and down day after getting bumped on numerous occasions. He finally settled into 28th on the grid in the final minutes.

Ku Busch's post All-Star race comments

“It was really a good effort all the way around for this Miller Lite Dodge team." Busch said. "I felt that the way that our car took off on green flag runs, the car just took too long to get going. That’s a big mystery to us for sure and it’s not anything you want in a 10-lap shootout. Overall, I thought that we had the best car on a 20-lap run, but that doesn’t pay the big bucks tonight. We finished third, but that doesn’t mean anything. If anything, we learned some things for next weekend’s (Coca-Cola) 600 that hopefully we can apply and make our Miller Lite Dodge better."

Our View: Busch had a top-five car for most of the evening and his fantasy owners should be happy that he ended the day in third. Pushing the issue only leads to misery—just ask his brother Kyle, Ryan Newman or Jeff Gordon. Kurt's patient attitude should make him a good value in the 600.

Truck: Gilliland Lowe's report

The Racer's Group has entered a car or truck in every race at Lowe's during the All-Star/Coke 600 weekends. David Gilliland has already posted one top-10 finish with a sixth in the North Carolina Education Lottery 200 Camping World Truck Series race and his comments can be found at

Our View: Gilliland started the season with such promise and has fallen on hard times lately. This could be what it takes to restore some confidence to the team, but he is still a long way from being recommended in the Coke 600.

France defends NASCAR

A transcript from Brian France's press conference at Lowe's, in which he defends NASCAR's drug policy, can be found at

Our View: It's the usual defense of the policy—and the usual "missing of the point." No one is saying NASCAR doesn't have the right and need to test drivers, but there is no reason on earth for them not to tell drivers what they are testing for.

IRL: More notes from day 9 has published their own set of day nine notes from the third day of qualification.

Our View: Among other things, you will find out that Tomas Scheckter's car has been painted a "luscious sea-blue livery for his new sponsor Mona-Vie." Now there's some need to know information.

IRL: Duno betters time

Milka Duno has bettered her qualification time at Indy with a speed of 221.106, which places her 32nd on the grid. If she had posted that time on Saturday, she would have landed 25th.

Our View: This certainly improves her odds of starting the Indy 500, and that will mean that three female drivers make the show. Danica Patrick and Sarah Fisher are comfortably in the show.

F1: Mosley vows "no compromise"

"We've had an interesting meeting, an exchange of views, but nothing has come out of it," Max Mosley said following a meeting with the Formula One Teams Association in London, according to

Our View: The arrogance of a "no compromise" statement is countered somewhat by the confusion over why owners think the need to spend more than $60 million. It's hard to take a side in this dogfight.

Stewart on his All-Star win

Tony Stewart met with reporters after the All-Star race and described his last couple of laps.

I've said this 50 times since I got in the car: I can't believe he gave me the bottom. We got a run on him two laps before and got a run off of 2 at the bottom, got beside him. I overdrove it in 3 and just got down there and got loose trying to clear him, and he was able to get back by us. And then he went to the bottom in 1 and 2 the next lap.

I don't think he was great down there, but he was good enough, I think, to hold us off. But the next lap we go back through there and we got a run off of 4 on him.

I was prepared to go at least to the middle or to the top and run somewhere different because I knew I wasn't going to be able to follow him through there again.

And on the entry he ran up high, and I was like: Wow, I can't believe he's giving me the bottom again. I got down there, got in the gas real quick and got by. And it was the best the car was all night. Darian made a handful of adjustments on that last caution and, man, did it wake that car up.

It just was stuck those last 10 laps. We were as good as the guys in front of us. We were just in traffic with them. And I'm confident even if Jeff didn't have a problem or Jimmie didn't have a problem around us, that we had a shot at running with those guys.

I don't know if we would have got by those two, but Ryan Newman was probably the guy that should have been in Victory Lane tonight. He got a tire cut and had to come get it fixed.
But, man, it was just awesome to finally get into Victory Lane here with a group of guys that have been looking at this for a long time.

Dover renovation completed

It was the last NASCAR track to modernize its pits to 43 slots, but the renovation on Dover International Speedway is now complete, according to

Our View: Not only does Dover have 43 stalls, each of them are longer than last year and pit lane is wider. This will have a significant impact on fantasy owners since qualification in the back will not be quite as bad as before. Since Dover is a rhythm track, however, qualification cannot be completely discounted.

Gale goes Canadian

Kevin Harvick, Inc. driver Cale Gale will compete in most of the NASCAR Canada races this year, campaigning for Farewell Racing, according to

Our View: Harvick summed it up best, "Cale is a very talented young driver who needs seat time," Harvick said in a news release. "When FRI approached us with the opportunity for Cale to drive for them, we saw it as a win-win."

F1: Lola announces 2010 intentions

While Ferrari, Renault and other race teams are threatening to exit Formula 1 in response to a proposed salary cap, British car maker Lola announced its intention to return to the sport in 2010, according to

Our View: The salary cap brouhaha sounds like a tempest in a teapot and even if the major makers carry through on their threat to pull out, the head to head competition is liable to improve.

IRL: Tracy may run more races in 2009

Paul Tracy may run additional races in 2009 for KV Racing, according to He will start the Indy 500 in 13th, which has generated interest in the fiery Canadian.

Our View: For the moment, the focus is on the Canadian road races and that fits Tracy's skill set best. If he makes the starts, he could be a great value.