July 31, 2009

Lowe's will not resume naming rights with Charlotte track

After 11 years, Lowe's has decided not to renew naming rights with the track, according to Sports Business Journal. The two sides could not reach an agreement on a price, which Charlotte wished to be $9 million annually.

Our View Just when we were getting used to calling it Lowe's Motor Speedway. It is expected that the name will return to Charlotte Motor Speedway in 2010.

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IRL: Kentucky qualification canceled

Qualification has been canceled at Kentucky Speedway and the field will be set by the rule book. Notably, qualification was also canceled for the NASCAR race in Pocono.

Our View However, there was no rain at Kentucky. The track developed "weepers" after heavy rain overnight.

This comes during the middle of the anti-trust action between the former owners of this track and NASCAR—and it does not help in the court of public opinion.

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Yahoo! Qualification Story – Pocono

For the fifth time this year, Mother Nature canceled qualification. In June, Tony Stewart won the race after time trial were rained out; can history repeat itself? Check out this week's story (.pdf).

F1: Massa heading home

Felipe Massa is expected to be released from a Hungarian hospital and will return to Brazil after this weekend, according to Crash.net.

Our View That is great news. His incident in the Hungarian Grand Prix was extremely scary.

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IRL: 1.5 million reasons why Indy won't race Richmond

There are 1.5 million reasons why the Indy Racing League won't return to Richmond International Raceway in 2010, according to the Richmond Times Dispatch. In poor economic times, the sanctioning fee was just too much for International Speedway Corporation.

Our View With a $53 million dollar impact on the local economy, however, one thinks they could have figured something out.

Perhaps the most interesting comment in this article, however, was this: "Fan and industry feedback largely was negative after repeat winner Scott Dixon won the June 27 race by finishing ahead of his Chip Ganassi Racing teammate and pole-sitter Dario Franchitti. During the race, there were long stretches of uninterrupted racing with few lead changes." Isn't that what racing is about?

For years, NASCAR fans have decried the questionable cautions waved by the sanctioning body; be careful what you wish for.

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Pocono: qualification canceled

For the second time this year, qualification has been canceled at Pocono and the field will be set my owner points. That puts Tony Stewart on the pole.

Our View Stewart hopes the same thing does not happen to him this week as in the first Pocono race. He crashed in practice and had to go to the back of the grid with a backup car to start the race.

On the other hand, he does hope for the same race result: he won the Pocono 500.

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F1: Hamilton looks forward to racing Schumacher

Fresh off victory last week in Hungary, Lewis Hamilton is looking forward to finally getting a chance to race against Michael Schumacher in Spain, according to Crash.net.

Our View Hopefully the early season struggles are behind him and Hamilton in his McLaren and Schumacher in the Ferrari will get a chance to contend.

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N'Wide: another caution at Iowa, for Wimmer

It's been a busy practice session at Iowa. Scott Wimmer spun on the frontstretch, according to @NACARS_NNS.

Our View This is an opportunity race since few NASCAR Cup drivers will be in attendance and it appears that everyone is a little too anxious.

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N'Wide: early caution in Iowa

Caution has waved early in Iowa, with an incident between Mike Harmon, Aric Almirola and Brad Coleman, according to a tweet from @NascarNNS.

Our View Harmon sustained the most damage, but Coleman is in the stronger car. He's driving the Joe Gibbs' No. 20 and would be considered a dark horse contender for a top-five. Let's hope his damage is not great.

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Pocono practice 1 canceled, Martin fastest

The remainder of the first practice session at Pocono has been canceled and it featured Mark Martin at the top of the charts with a speed of 169.354 mph. In fact, all four Hendrick Motorsports cars were the class of the field with Jimmie Johnson second (167.604), Dale Earnhardt Jr. third (167.470) and Jeff Gordon fourth (166.799).

Our View Affiliates Tony Stewart and Ryan Newman were sixth and seventh on the chart. This is a pretty clear sign that Hendrick should dominate your fantasy roster.

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Waltrip will roll out a backup

It's official: Michael Waltrip will be forced to roll out a backup car after tearing the front splitter off his Toyota.

Our View If qualification gets underway, he will be able to keep his position so long as he keeps his primary engine.

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Rain delays, will probably cancel Pocono practice 1

Rain has finally arrived at Pocono and it will probably cancel the remainder of Pocono's practice.

Our View Chances are good that qualification will get canceled as well, but with only 43 cars at the track that should not matter.

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Waltrip spins in Pocono practice 1

Michael Waltrip missed the entrance to pit road, rolled through the grass and destroyed his front splitter entering the pavement on pit road at the 45 minute mark of the first practice session.

Our View The damage is actually fairly significant and this could either mean they will have to roll out a backup car or miss the rest of practice while making repairs.

If Waltrip moves into a backup car, he will be able to keep his qualification spot so long as he changes engines and puts the primary powerplant in the new car.

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