Steven B. Wilson
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The official NASCAR Series in Europe unveiled today a brand new classification: the Nations Cup, designed to further enhance the competition by rewarding the best national teams and provide race fans even more motivation to cheer for their favorite drivers.
With 21 countries represented on the grid by more than 60 drivers, the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series is one of the most international championships in motorsports. The 2017 season saw the first non-European driver win the Euro NASCAR title thanks to Alon Day, confirming NWES as the ideal path to a NASCAR career for drivers coming from all over the world.
Providing a fantastic opportunity for drivers and teams to compete for their country, the Nations Cup will reward with Gold, Silver and Bronze medals the competitors representing the three highest scoring nations for each weekend.
The classification will be based on the addition of the points scored by the best finishing driver for each country in the four races constituting the NWES meetings, giving competitors and fans the chance to get together under their national flags.
“These past years, we have seen the NWES attracting more and more drivers and fans from all over the world. The Nation Cup will accompany this process and create emphasis for our drivers and teams on their National stage. We can rely on our fans to bring great support to their National team,” said Jerome Galpin, NASCAR Whelen Euro Series President / CEO.
The first appointment with the new Nations Cup is for April 14-15, 2018 when the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series will open the season at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, Spain. Bring your flags to track, race fans!
The ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards will make a triumphant return to Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 24, 2018, during Pole Night. The first ARCA race at Charlotte since 2004 will bring stock car racing’s future standouts to a world-class stage during the 10 Days of NASCAR Thunder following qualifying for the Coca-Cola 600. The 150-mile race will provide drivers with a special opportunity to showcase their skills in front of the racing world’s most prominent teams.
“Charlotte Motor Speedway is all about entertaining the fans, so we’re thrilled to add ARCA racing to our lineup of unmatched motorsports entertainment during the 10 Days of NASCAR Thunder,” said Greg Walter, Charlotte Motor Speedway executive vice president. “The ARCA Racing Series has showcased some spectacularly successful drivers in the recent past like Joey Logano, Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson. We’re sure that another rising star will make a name for himself on our world-class stage during Pole Night next May.”
Ryan Hemphill took the checkered flag in ARCA’s most recent trip to Charlotte in May of 2004.
“Charlotte Motor Speedway’s stature in stock car racing makes it a top-tier destination,” said ARCA President Ron Drager. “Since Curtis Turner won the first Charlotte ARCA race in 1964, drivers including Tim Steele, Frank Kimmel, Adam Petty, Ryan Newman and Kerry Earnhardt have added their names to the list. We look forward to an exciting race next May 24.”
Fans can buy tickets to 2018 events at the speedway by calling 1-800-455-FANS (3267), at the ticket office or by visiting http://www.
Fans can connect with Charlotte Motor Speedway by following on Twitter and Instagram or become a Facebook fan. Keep up with all the latest news and information with the Charlotte Motor Speedway mobile app.
The 66th consecutive season for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards is now in place, as Series officials have released the 2018 schedule to include 20 race-dates across 13 states.
Another healthy mix of superspeedways, intermediate tracks, paved short tracks and dirt tracks will highlight the 2018 tour, including returns trips to Charlotte Motor Speedway, Gateway Motorsports Park and Berlin Raceway. The race date at Charlotte will be the 21st ARCA race at the 1.5-mile speedway since 1964, and ends a 14-year hiatus. The last time ARCA raced at Gateway was 2007, when Bryan Clauson was the winner.
“We are pleased to announce our complete 20-race, 2018 schedule,” said ARCA President Ron Drager. “From superspeedways recognized among the most famed tracks in the world, to historic short tracks and mile dirt tracks, the schedule highlights the long standing diversity of the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards. We’re especially pleased to welcome back to the schedule Charlotte Motor Speedway, Gateway Motorsports Park and Berlin Raceway."
The series will kick off the 2018 campaign with the 55th running of the Lucas Oil 200 Driven by General Tire at Daytona February 10. And for the seventh consecutive year, the ARCA Racing Series champion will be crowned under the lights October 19 at Kansas Speedway. In between Daytona and Kansas the tour will host events on seven superspeedways, nine paved short tracks and two dirt tracks.
The series will race at conjunction event venues with all three of NASCAR's top-tier divisions -- Monster Energy NASCAR Cup, the NASCAR Xfinity Series and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Other companion weekends feature the Verizon IndyCar Series.
Prior to the 2018 season, series officials will celebrate the 2017 season one final time. National champion driver Austin Theriault and owner Ken Schrader will be honored at the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards awards banquet at the Indiana Convention Center in downtown Indianapolis Saturday, December 9.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will take the green flag on the 2018 season at South Carolina’s Myrtle Beach Speedway in March, and the schedule will feature 16 championship points races at nine different venues.
The champion will once again be crowned at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, as the .625-mile hosts the 56th Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing on Sunday, Oct. 14.
The calendar spotlight’s some of the northeast’s iconic short tracks, includes three fast southern venues and features the longest distance race in tour history as the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour takes center stage at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in September for a 250-lap showdown.
“Year in and year out, the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour puts on some of the most exciting and pulse-pounding action in racing, and we are looking forward to the 2018 season,” said Jim Cassidy, NASCAR vice president of racing operations. “We’ve made some tweaks in the dates to alleviate some of the schedule congestion and better help teams work through the season. In 2017, we saw six drivers enter the final race of the season with a shot at the title, and we’re eager to watch that high level of competition continuing next season.”
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour’s return to Seekonk Speedway in Massachusetts has been moved from August to June 2. The date change means the tour will only have one instance where it will race three weeks in a row, and will have at least a weekend off between races on 10 different occasions.
Last year, the tour began its new unified era with the season opener at Myrtle Beach. South Carolina’s semi-banked half-mile oval held its first NASCAR event in 1958, and will once again host the opener on Saturday, March 17.
Earlier this summer, NASCAR and New Hampshire Motor Speedway announced the tour will be the headliner on Saturday, Sept. 22 as part of a special event that will also include the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and NASCAR Pinty’s Series.
The NASCAR Whelen Modifeid Tour will also visit New Hampshire in July with a championship points race as well as the annual invitational, non-points All-Star Shootout. The tour will also be part of the national series weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway in August.
After Myrtle Beach, the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour will return to New England for two of the staple weekends of the early racing season: The 44rd Annual Icebreaker at Thompson and the 47th Annual NAPA Auto Parts Spring Sizzler at Connecticut’s Stafford Motor Speedway.
The tour will make four stops at Thompson, and three at Stafford.
The tour schedule also features two races at Long Island’s Riverhead Raceway, a bullring known for their high-intensity, close-quarters Modified action, as well as return trips to New York’s Oswego Speedway and Virgina’s Langley Speedway in Hampton.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour television broadcast schedule on NBCSN will be announced at a later date.
|17-Mar||Myrtle Beach Speedway||Myrtle Beach, S.C.|
|8-Apr||Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park||Thompson, Conn.|
|29-Apr||Stafford Motor Speedway||Stafford, Conn.|
|2-Jun||Seekonk Speedway||Seekonk, Mass.|
|13-Jun||Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park||Thompson, Conn.|
|23-Jun||Langley Speedway||Hampton, Va.|
|7-Jul||Riverhead Raceway||Riverhead, N.Y.|
|20-Jul||New Hampshire Motor Speedway*||Loudon, N.H.|
|21-Jul||New Hampshire Motor Speedway||Loudon, N.H.|
|3-Aug||Stafford Motor Speedway||Stafford, Conn.|
|8-Aug||Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park||Thompson, Conn.|
|15-Aug||Bristol Motor Speedway||Bristol, Tenn.|
|1-Sep||Oswego Speedway||Oswego, N.Y..|
|8-Sep||Riverhead Raceway||Riverhead, N.Y.|
|22-Sep||New Hampshire Motor Speedway||Loudon, N.H.|
|30-Sep||Stafford Motor Speedway||Stafford, Conn.|
|14-Oct||Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park||Thompson, Conn.|
*non-points, special events | SCHEDULE SUBJECT TO CHANGE
Just days after racking in another solid NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) performance at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway to close his second season of competition, Austin Wayne Self (@AustinWSelf) has spent the last few days reflecting on a year filled with plenty of accomplishments and motivation.
The Austin, Texas native opened the year with a career-best runner-up performance at Daytona (Fla.) Speedway driving for AM Racing. Self was driving the team’s second truck as the Mooresville, N.C. organization debuted a second-truck for the event and tallied two top-10 efforts in the NextEra Energy Resources 250.
Despite the strong start to the year, Self’s schedule remained fluid for much of the opening races of the year until the driver partnered with Niece Motorsports and Martins Motorsports in a collaborative effort with Faith Motorsports to complete in a majority of the 2017 schedule.
From his debut at Kansas Speedway with Niece which kicked off with a solid top-15 performance to a 17th place result in the Ford EcoBoost 200 at Homestead with Martins Motorsports, the Texan showcased his talent and proved that that his sophomore season was no slump.
The 21-year-old would go on to race in four more races for AM Racing which ended with a ninth-place effort on the road course at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario.
In all, the former ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards Rookie of the Year tallied one top-five, two top-10, eight top-15 and 13 top-20 finishes overall. Despite missing five races from February to Nov., Self still placed 15th overall in the championship standings.
“We certainly have a lot to be thankful for this season,” said Self. “To open our year up with a second-place finish at Daytona – almost a win. That’s pretty incredible. I was proud of that.
“We skipped a couple races and came back to Kansas with Niece and I think I proved to others that no matter what truck I’m in – I leave nothing on the table and work hard to develop the best finish possible week in and week out.”
Other highlights in the year included a 12th place result at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway and the same at Texas Motor Speedway.
On his home turf at Texas Motor Speedway, Self saw the opportunity for at the time would have been his second top-10 finish of the season end in smoke and crunch after tangling with another truck on the last lap.
Still, despite the outcome, Self says it was one of the more pivotal races in 2017.
“When I look back at the spring in Texas, our truck was bad to the bone. We’re very grateful to have a truck that is backed with a lot of help from Texas-based partners and supporters and we were giving them a show.
“I was able to climb from the back and maintain a comfortable spot inside the top-10 until I spun on the last lap going for another position.
“I was pretty bummed afterwards, but my team rallied behind me and they told me they would rather me wreck a truck while going for seventh than bring home a truck hovering in 25th. I never forgot that and it was pretty much game on from there.”
With another solid effort to bring down the curtain to his sophomore season, Self says he’s eager to start working on next season – which was previously announced he’ll run for Niece Motorsports’ No. 22 Chevrolet truck for his junior year of competition.
“I’m ready to go,” Self added. “You know, I’m very fortunate. I have a lot of great partners that have allowed me to thrive this season and they’re all coming back next year.
“Without the support of Don’t mess with Texas, GO TEXAN, AM Technical Solutions and B&D Industries Inc. – there would be no Austin Wayne Self on the race track. We’re working hard on some awesome things both on and off the track next year and it’s hard to believe that Daytona will be here in less than 90 days.”
Additional marketing partnership(s) at Niece Motorsports for Self are forthcoming.
In 18 races this season driving for AM Racing, Martins Motorsports and Niece Motorsports, Self earned a career-best second place performance in the season-opening NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway and earned an additional top-10 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, both finishes driving for AM Racing. Overall, Self earned one top-five, two top-10, eight top-15 and 13 top-20 finishes respectively en route to a 15th place finish in the championship standings.
AM Racing PR
NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) driver Dylan Lupton (@LuptonDylan) has set up an online auction for his uniform he wore during last month’s Kansas Lottery 300 event weekend at Kansas Speedway during his month-long push of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Lupton’s No. 24 Nut Up Industries Toyota featured a special pink paint scheme for his debut at the 1.5-mile speedway, while the Wilton, Calif. native also wore a pink uniform to commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Lupton, Nut Up Industries and his JGL Racing team also hosted a breast cancer survivor on race day through their event partnership with the Susan G. Komen Greater Kansas City.
The proceeds from the winning bid of the uniform will go directly to that Susan G. Komen Greater Kansas City as an additional donation from the trio.
Last month, over $10,000 was donated to them from combined efforts and initiatives from Lupton, Nut Up Industries and JGL Racing.
Lupton has also autographed the Simpson-branded uniform to bring further brass to the item.
“We’re very proud to put this suit up for auction for a good cause,” said Lupton, a NASCAR Next alumnus. “Thanks to the hard work of everyone at Nut Up Industries, JGL Racing and the Susan G. Komen Great Kansas City – my Kansas debut was a race I’ll never forget.
“We were able to raise money towards a good cause, while host a recent breast cancer survivor and her family at the race track. It was a day full of memories and we’re hoping that by auctioning off this suit, it will help create more memories.”
To view the auction, please click here.
Lupton, 23, a multiple time NASCAR K&N Pro Series West winner has 24 career NASCAR XFINITY Series starts to his credit to go along with four starts in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. He has a career best XFINITY Series finish of ninth which came at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course during the 2015 season.
Dylan Lupton PR
Pocono Raceway CEO, Nick Igdalsky, and President, Ben May, have announced the addition of two new employees and several key staff promotions.
Craig Amhaus joins Pocono Raceway as the Executive Managing Director, Partnership Sales and Service. He will be responsible for developing and implementing comprehensive internal and external sales, sponsorship and partner relations with the goal of increasing service, partners and returns. Amhaus joins Pocono after working for Upstage Video at Rock Lititz as the Vice President of Business Development. Additionally, Amhaus’ career has included extensive sports and entertainment successes with the Philadelphia Union of Major League Soccer as the Vice President of Corporate Partnerships, Just Marketing International as the Director of Partnership Development, Dover International Speedway as the Business Development Manager and with StageCo as the Director of Sales and Marketing.
Kayla Houser joins the Pocono Raceway as a Ticketing Specialist after a successful summer internship position with the department in 2016. She graduated from Seton Hill University in May 2017 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Management and Minor in Business Administration.
“The Pocono Raceway family features a talented group of individuals who work together to accomplish amazing things as a team,” said May. “Their hard work has helped us grow over the last couple of seasons and we are thrilled to award their efforts with several key promotions. We are excited to welcome two new members to our staff. Craig (Amhaus) comes to us with a depth of motorsport and entertainment experience to lead our Partnership Sales team. Kayla (Houser), a recent college graduate, will add a fresh perspective as we continue to enhance our guest services and weekend experience.”
In addition to the new hires,
- Kevin Henry was promoted to Managing Director, Facility Operations as he enters his fifth year at Pocono.
- Ryan Yanoshak starts his third year at ‘The Tricky Triangle’ as the Managing Director, Marketing Communications.
- Ricky Durst, who will begin his seventh season with Pocono, has been promoted to Senior Director, Marketing and Fan Engagement. He will also continue to serve as the track’s government affairs liaison.
- Kevin Heaney will begin his eighth season at the Raceway and will lead the newly-created Content Department, handling all outbound fan engagement over social media, e-mail marketing and website communications, as Director, Content.
- Kevin Teel joins the Content Department as the Manager, Content after six seasons as a member of the Ticket Office staff.
- JJ LaRose enters his fifth season at Pocono Raceway and also joins the Content Department as Manager, Content & Promotions.
Pocono Raceway will host seven motorsports events in 2018, including two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races and the Verizon IndyCar Series. One NASCAR XFINITY Series, one Camping World Truck Series and two ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards races are also on the schedule for 2018.
Pocono Raceway PR
Young’s Motorsports (YMS) successfully completed their fourth season of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway this past Friday night and the team’s top-10 performance in the Ford EcoBoost 200 is just a glimpse of what’s to come next season.
For the season finale at Homestead, the team tapped series veteran Timothy Peters to steer the No. 02 Brandt Chevrolet Silverado. The likable and experienced driver made his team debut at Las Vegas (Nev.) Motor Speedway in Sept., and his 11th place finish left more to be desired.
The weekend didn’t start off on the right foot for the Mooresville, N.C.-based team. While the team was able to showcase speed right off the hauler, Peters believed he was having engine issues. Upon further inspection from the team, they confirmed Peters’ hunch limiting their practice in preparation for the 134-lap race.
Still, quick work by the Young’s Motorsports team and crew chief Chad Kendrick left more to be desired for qualifying and the race.
During time trials, Peters qualified 17th but felt confident in the truck’s ability for racing later that afternoon.
When the green flag was thrown, Peters steadily utilized traffic to come through the field and eventually latch himself onto the top-10. As the race motored on during Stage 1, the better Peter’s truck became.
By the conclusion of Stage 1, Peters had worked his way though the pack and landed 10th overall.
Continuing to pluck away at the field, a well-balanced truck found Peters seventh by the end of Stage 2 and with a legitimate opportunity to score Young’s Motorsports another solid outing.
Just four tires and fuel were the call for the 37-year-old driver heading into the final stage.
Making sure Peters had enough gas to make it to the end, he lost a few positions on pit road and slipped to 11th for the Lap 88 restart.
Methodically and patiently, Peters continued to stalk his competition and after a quick spat back in the top-10, a loose truck slipped the Danville, Va. native back to 11th with the laps winding down for the season finale.
Perseverance behind the wheel and a little luck bolted Peters back inside the top-10 in the closing laps where he took the checkered flag in 10th, earning his fourth top-10 finish in eight starts this season.
Two of those outings were for Young’s Motorsports.
“I really can’t thank Tyler (Young), Chad (Kendrick, crew chief), Rick (Brandt, CEO of Brandt) for the opportunity to come to Homestead and have a good showing,” offered Peters.
“You know I thought we could be a little better in the day, but we didn’t quite get the handling we needed on the truck to make an impact on the other teams. Still, we finished 10th, so there’s a lot to be thankful and appreciative.
Young’s Motorsports team principal and veteran NCWTS driver Tyler Young echoed his driver’s sentiments and feels the Homestead finish is exactly what his team needed to propel them into the offseason.
“Timothy did an awesome job for us,” added Young. “I can’t thank him enough. I was really impressed with the way he drove Homestead. He has a niche for that place and he really kept us pumped up.
“He certainly put us in the spotlight and proved that we’re going in the right direction with our program. No doubt his effort really boosted the spirits of everyone on the team.”
With the off-season now here, Young says it’s time for some rest, relaxation and reflection – but also focus hard on improving the operation for an impending stronger 2018 Truck Series season.
“I feel like we’re making some big gains, especially towards the end of the season,” Young added. “We’ll keep working on it, making tweaks – building new trucks and more. The future looks pretty bright for us and I can’t wait to see all unfold in less than 90 days at Daytona.”
Earlier this month, Young’s Motorsports announced that Austin Hill will drive the team’s flagship, No. 02 Chevrolet Silverado truck next season, but the team is planning to enter a second-truck for the full-23 race slate with announcements regarding that program announced at a later date.
Overall, in 238 NCWTS starts, Peters has earned eight poles, 10 wins, 57 top-five and 122 top-10 finishes and has led over 1,500 laps in competition. In a span of 13 years, Peters has crafted an average start and finish of 12.7 respectively.
Young Motorsports PR