Thursday, Jul 07

Whisler Weekly Recap: Sonoma/Iowa

Thursday, Jun 29 2860

Road Course Ringers

Everytime NASCAR heads to the road course there are a few familiar faces and new names that arrive at the track. This past weekend. Road course ringers at Sonoma included Billy Johnson, Alon Day, Josh Bilicki, Boris Said, and Kevin O’Connell.

 

The age of more than 10 road course ringers arriving at the track are gone. Road course racing was something that the normal drivers were not privy too. Many teams would commission these “ringers” to race at Sonoma and Watkins Glen.

 

These drivers are considered the best of the best on road courses. However, when they arrive at road course on the NASCAR circuit, that knowledge seems to disappear. The highest driver to finish of the “ringers” was Johnson, who finished 22nd on Sunday.

 

The days of the road course ringer is finished.

 

Silly Season

Discussions about silly season in the NASCAR world have arose over the past week. After a fairly calm silly season in 2016, 2017 is going to be considered “crazy”.

 

The biggest domino to fall will be who will replace Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the Hendrick Motorsports No. 88 car for 2018. Earnhardt Jr. will retire at the end of the season. Once the domino falls, the rest of silly season will ramp up.

 

Another discussion is what will happen to Danica Patrick and Kasey Kahne at the end of this season. Both drivers have not had the performance in recent years, which is taking its toll on both drivers. The future of Kahne and Patrick will be crucial in how silly season unfolds.

 

Eldora Channel move

 

On the Iowa NASCAR Camping World Truck Series broadcast, FOX Sports announced that the Eldora event for the Truck series will be broadcasted on FOX Business Network.

 

FOX Sports is slated to air soccer on Fox Sports 1, instead of NASCAR. The soccer event is the CONCACAF Gold Cup Quarterfinal that is expected to feature the U.S. Men’s National team.

 

This is not the first time that a race has been started on FOX Business Network.

 

Marcus Lemonis, CEO of Camping World, was not to thrilled about the switch to FOX Business and expressed his concerns on social media.

 

 

Iowa Speedway

Every time the NASCAR Xfinity Series and the Camping World Truck Series goes to Iowa Speedway the calls for a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event to be run at the Newton, Iowa facility is amplified.

 

There are numerous problems with that statement. Fans complain that the Xfinity Series and Truck series mimics the Cup series. Because they are the only series to race at Iowa, this allows for them to keep what little identity they have left.

 

Another problem with Iowa Speedway is the infrastructure. Iowa Speedway does not have the infrastructure around its facility to potentially host the Cup series with the other two series.

 

Another issue to highlight is that NASCAR, International Speedway Corporation, and Speedway Motorsports Inc. are locked into five year sanctioning agreements that expire in 2020. What many fans tend to forget is that NASCAR owns Iowa Speedway. ISC and SMI have had numerous Sherman Anti-Trust lawsuits filed against them because of their stronghold on the NASCAR schedule.

 

Stage Racing at road courses

 

Whenever stage racing was announced back in January, drivers, fans, and media were curious how this new competition enhancement would play out at road courses.

 

Stage racing at Sonoma played a crucial role in the first two stages as many drivers strived to pit before the pit lane was closed two laps before the end of the stage. Many positions were lost and gained in the first two stages based on the pit strategy of teams. The final stage at Sonoma went caution free as Kevin Harvick took to victory lane.

 

Stage racing seemed to be accepted by all parties involved.

Caleb Whisler

I am 19 years old from Atlanta, GA. I have been following motorsports since I was born. Motorsports has been "passed down" in my family. I am named after NASCAR Hall of Famer, William Caleb Yarborough, also known as Cale. Growing up in the southeast, racing was something that was a Sunday tradition after church. What an honor it is to share that passion with others.

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