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Track`Talk Update + More

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Old 03-25-2009, 06:20 AM
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Track Talk by Valvoline



THE BIG STORY
Kyle Busch won for the second time this season, taking Sunday's Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway. He easily held off Joe Gibbs' Toyota teammate Denny Hamlin on a green-white-checker finish. Jimmie Johnson was third, followed by Jeff Gordon and Kasey Kahne. Gordon leads Kurt Busch (11th) by 76 points.
Also: Audi debuted its new P1 prototype with a victory in the 12 Hours of Sebring, which opened the ALMS season… The FIA said the Formula One world champion will be determined by total race wins rather than points, with point totals serving as a tie-breaker. After teams objected, though, the FIA said the change could be delayed until 2010… Anheuser-Busch announced this will be Budweiser's last as Kenny Bernstein's sponsor and official NHRA beer sponsor. This is Bud's 30th consecutive year as Bernstein's sponsor, a motorsports record… The Indianapolis Motor Speedway will host a one-time Centennial Era Concours d'Elegance, featuring classic and antique automobiles, on June 18-20, 2010… John Edwards won Friday's Atlantic series opener at Sebring… Scott Dixon was fastest Sunday in an IRL open test at Barber Motorsports Park.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Former Cup team owner Gary Bechtel became a co-owner of Tommy Baldwin Racing. Yates Racing will suspend operations of the No. 28 Ford, driven by Travis Kvapil, due to lack of sponsorship. Mark Martin claimed his second consecutive Cup pole with a 125.773 mph lap Friday at Bristol. Martin led the opening two laps then gave way to Ryan Newman. Martin finished sixth. The first yellow waved when John Andretti spun on lap 28. Jimmie Johnson didn't pit and took the lead. Andretti then tagged Dave Blaney into a spin on the restart. Todd Bodine and Michael Waltrip tangled on lap 55 with Kurt Busch's and Kevin Harvick's cars getting damaged in the incident. Johnson again stayed out but Kyle Busch passed him for the top spot on lap 69. Juan Pablo Montoya bumped Jamie McMurray into a spin on lap 123 and, this time, Johnson joined others in the pits. With just under 200 laps to go, Denny Hamlin got to Kyle Busch in traffic and took the lead. The yellow then came out when Brian Vickers had a tire come apart. Johnson got out of the pits first. Greg Biffle went to the garage with an engine failure. With 132 laps to go, Kyle Busch went around Johnson. Harvick hit the wall when a tire went flat with 59 laps remaining. Kyle Busch got out of the pits on that yellow ahead of Hamlin and Kasey Kahne. David Stremme spun with 47 laps left. Joey Logano blew an engine with seven laps remaining, which extended the race distance by three laps. Kyle Busch finished .391 second ahead of Hamlin and averaged 92.139 mph with nine yellows for 58 laps. He led 378 laps. Dale Earnhardt Jr., who had to start at the back of the field after a transmission change, was 14th.
NASCAR Nationwide Series
Kevin Harvick won for the first time for his own team in Saturday's Scotts Turf Builder 300 at Bristol. Kyle Busch led 156 laps and came into the pits as the leader on a yellow with just under 50 laps to go, but a tire bounced off the pit wall and out of his pit box. That brought a penalty from NASCAR. He restarted 16th and finished sixth. Harvick's Chevrolet got out of the pits first on that yellow and finished .798 second up on Carl Edwards' Ford. Clint Bowyer was third. Matt Kenseth finished fourth, subbing for Greg Biffle, who bruised his ribs when he slipped on a dock earlier in the week. Harvick led 46 laps despite a faulty alternator. He averaged 79.717 mph with 10 cautions for 62 laps. Edwards leads Harvick by 114 points.
American Le Mans Series
Scott Dixon put the Gil de Ferran team's new Acura P1 car on the overall pole Thursday with a 126.522 mph lap at Sebring. Only 26 cars started the series' 100th race. Neither of the two new P1 class Acuras made it to the finish. Allan McNish took the lead for good with 42 minutes to go Saturday night when Franck Montagny pitted his Peugeot diesel for fuel. McNish, co-driving with Tom Kristensen and Rinaldo Capello, made a quick refueling stop with 14 minutes to go and got to the finish line 22.2 seconds ahead of Montagny. His co-drivers were Sebastien Bourdais and Stephane Sarrazine. It was Audi's ninth Sebring win in the last 10 years and the debut of its newest diesel-powered R15 prototype. They set records for the current 3.7-mile course with 383 laps completed, 1,417 miles, averaging 117.986 mph. The runners-up lost time in the ninth hour with an unscheduled pit stop to replace a punctured tire. The second Audi, shared by Mike Rockenfeller, Lucas Luhr and Marco Werner finished third, two laps down. In LMP2, the Acura of Adrian Fernandez and Luis Diaz won, the only remaining car running of three starters in that class. The two factory Chevrolet Corvettes raced each other in GT1, with Jan Magnussen, Johnny O'Connell and Antonio Garcia the winners. In GT2, the Ferrari of Pierre Kaffer, Jamie Melo and Mika Salo won.
Racers of the Week
Tom Kristensen, Rinaldo Capello and Allan McNish. Kristensen now has a record five Sebring wins, Capello four, and McNish three.
Yes, He REALLY Said That
Bernie Ecclestone, on scheduling more Formula One races outside of Europe. "I said a long time ago that the stock market would crash and that Europe would become a third-world economy. And it will."
This WeekendNASCAR has Saturday Trucks at Martinsville with Cup cars Sunday. NHRA runs Houston. Formula One opens in Australia.


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I.N. Sider picks those who should be included in the inaugural NASCAR Hall of Fame class in the new Behind [Closed] Garage Doors column, now posted at Valvoline.com.


I.N. Sider is the pen name for an independent motorsports business-person who has a quarter-century of professional experience working in almost every major North American racing series. The writer is not an employee of Valvoline or Ashland Inc. The column is intended to inform, entertain, and stimulate thought on the contemporary motorsports scene. The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of Valvoline or Ashland Inc. "Track Talk" is a summary of the week's racing news and results of nationally televised events. The information has been obtained from on-site reporting plus race telecasts, major news outlets, tracks and sanctioning organizations.

 

Last edited by Space; 03-25-2009 at 06:23 AM.
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