Sunday, Mar 26
Speedway Digest Staff

Speedway Digest Staff

Follow us on Twitter @SpeedwayDigest

Pocono Raceway has established the Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund to benefit the victims of the lighting strike tragedy which occurred following the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway on Sunday, August 5, 2012.

Donations will be accepted at any PNC Branch or by mailing checks/money orders, addressed to “Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund” to the following address:

Pocono Raceway
Attn: Pennsylvania 400 Memorial Fund
1234 Long Pond Road
Long Pond, PA 18334

Pocono Raceway PR

After win No. 86, there are no plans to "let up" for Jeff Gordon - only attack.


With his victory at Pocono last Sunday, Gordon moved into the final wildcard spot for the "Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup." But the four-time Watkins Glen International winner knows the No. 24 Drive To End Hunger team must continue to press while the pressure is on.


"(The Pocono win) only puts more pressure on us over these next several weeks, but we're ready for the challenge," said Gordon, who has moved from 22nd in the point standings to 13th on the heels of seven consecutive finishes of 12th or better. "With all we've been through this year and this team staying together while not pointing fingers, we knew if we could get to Victory Lane it would make us stronger.


"We've put together a string of good runs and finishes, but we have to keep fighting for wins. I don't know if one win will be good enough to secure a wildcard spot."


This Sunday's Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen marks Gordon's 20th start at the 2.45-mile track. Along with four wins, the four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion has two poles, six top-fives and nine top-10's at the New York track. But he has not experienced good results recently, something he believes can change Sunday.


"We've not run very well at Watkins Glen in recent years and it's been very disappointing to me and the team," said Gordon, the all-time leader in NASCAR Sprint Cup road course victories with nine. "But I'm optimistic because I felt we made big improvements at Sonoma. We tested at Road Atlanta before that race, and I think it's a better track for Watkins Glen than it is for Sonoma.


"But we won't really know until we get on the track.


"I always love the road courses and Watkins Glen is always one of my favorites. It's a fast road course and you've got to have grip and comfort in that car through the esses and the high speed corners. You've got to attack the race track in the braking zones, and the car has got to be there for you and stick.


"Recently, though, I just feel like we've been missing a little something here."


Something Gordon hopes to find on the way to Victory Lane Sunday.



Michigan International Speedway has opened its cyber doors with a revamped Web site.

The track unveiled a new Web site on Monday. launched with a fresh look and unique interactive features, allowing MIS to be open to race fans 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The track also revamped its Canadian URL —, further strengthening its commitment to the track’s Canadian customers. The Canadian site for MIS is the first of its kind for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racetracks.

“It is essential for us to do anything we can for all our race fans and guests to make it easier for them to not only buy a race ticket, but to navigate their way around MIS 24 hours a day, including those who support us so loyally in Canada,” speedway President Roger Curtis said. “Our Web site is a key ingredient of our customer service commitment, so we want to make sure it’s easy to use and as friendly and helpful as any of our staff.”

Besides the updated look that captures the speedway’s “NASCAR in a national park” essence, the Web site promises to help current and future race fans educate themselves and plan their trips to the Irish Hills racetrack with four simple levels of navigation — tickets, camping, guest guide and about us.

These navigation buttons not only help fans buy race tickets and learn about MIS, it makes it easier to get involved with the sport of NASCAR.

It’s also about the fans.

These links will not only help fans find everything they need to know about planning their NASCAR trips to MIS, but it will also help them find the speedway on the World Wide Web’s social and interactive sites like Twitter and Facebook. There’s even a link for the speedway’s Web chats, Podcasts and favorite tailgate recipes.

Curtis added the Web site is an extension of MIS’ brand and helps get race fans excited about their summertime trips to Michigan.

The web site is also available in a mobile version.


This weekend, the Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) No. 43 Ford driven by Aric Almirola will once again showcase the black and "Petty blue" colors of the Smithfield paint scheme designed by longtime Richard Petty super fan Kevin Gates. The scheme, featured earlier this yearat the Charlotte Motor Speedway during the All-Star race, will once again be on the track this weekend at Watkins Glen International Speedway.


  Gates, who has been a Richard Petty devotee for more than 25 years, used his graphic design skills to create an updated paint scheme for the legendary RPM car. On a whim, he sent the sketch to RPM sponsor Smithfield Foods who, in turn, decided to make his vision a reality by updating the scheme to reflect his design.  The car then raced at the All-Star race in May at Charlotte.  It now returns to the track this weekend and the base scheme will be used for the remainder of the Smithfield-sponsored race events in 2012.  The opportunity to see his scheme on the track has been a dream come true for the humble 27-year-old Connecticut native.


"We at Smithfield have been excited to be able to showcase Kevin Gates' great work on the RPM No. 43 car this season and again this weekend at Watkins Glen," said Will Brunt, Vice President of Marketing. "The passion and enthusiasm racing fans possess is inspiring and is one of the many things we love about this sport. We are thrilled to be able to reward a lifetime racing fan in this manner."


"Designing the car has been an overwhelming experience for me," said Kevin Gates. "I'm extremely grateful for the opportunity Smithfield has given me. This is a dream come true for a fan like myself and it's been awesome to see this car race on the track. To know that I had a part in the process of creating the King's car is undoubtedly one of the stand alone highlights of my life."


"Smithfield started looking at their paint scheme and told us that one of our fans had created something they really liked," said Richard Petty, co-owner of Richard Petty Motorsports.  "We looked at it too and thought he did a pretty good job so we decided to check it out under the lights during the All-Star race.  Everyone seemed to like it so we'll bring it out in the day this weekend at Watkins Glen."


Gates' affinity for "The King" goes beyond just his skills on the racetrack; he also shares Petty's passion for charity with special needs and chronically ill children. Gates' own younger brother Scott was diagnosed with a very rare chromosome disorder at birth and has served as an inspiration and blessing in Gates' life.  He greatly admires and supports Petty's Victory Junction Gang Camp, a camp that provides life-changing experiences for kids with lasting medical conditions or serious illnesses, for providing these children with a place to enjoy themselves and gain self-confidence.


For more information about Smithfield, visit or



Dover International Speedway officials today announced its 2013 NASCAR race dates. Two tripleheaders of racing action will return to the Monster Mile on May 31-June 2 and Sept. 27-29, 2013.

New next season, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series qualifying will return to its traditional Friday afternoon time on the schedule as it precedes that afternoon’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race in the spring and NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race in the fall.

Both race weekends will again feature three days of action, including the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in the spring; and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in the fall.

In addition, the Monster Mile’s three-tier pricing program will return, rewarding fans with the lowest prices from the track and encouraging fans to buy early and save.

“In a trend that’s seen us revert back to some old traditions at the Monster Mile in recent years, we’re happy to continue with our traditional race dates while returning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series qualifying to Friday,” said Denis McGlynn, president and CEO of Dover Motorsports, Inc. “We’re also continuing new traditions as we’ll again offer low priced ticket options to fans in 2013 with the return of our three-tier pricing program. Essentially, the earlier a fan purchases their tickets, the more money they can save.”

The Monster Mile will again offer $10 junior tickets on Sundays for ages 14 and younger, which features seating in all four turns in 2013. That includes seven alcohol- and tobacco-free sections. For Friday and Saturday races, junior tickets are just $8 in all available seating sections.

Also returning in 2013 is the “Design-it-Yourself” payment plan. Customers can spread out their payments by placing a 25 percent deposit on their tickets before the Preferred Pricing period expires. They then can pay off their account on their own schedule, paying what they want when they want. The payments can be scheduled at using the “Ticket Account Manager” or by calling the ticket office at 800-441-RACE.

Tickets for the May 31-June 2, 2013 race weekend are currently on sale. Fans can begin placing deposits on tickets for the Sept. 27-29, 2013 race weekend during Dover’s Sept. 28-30, 2012 race weekend. Returning fans have the opportunity to renew their same seats for the 2013 race weekends. For tickets or to place a deposit, call 800-441-RACE.

But before 2013 even arrives, NASCAR returns to the Monster Mile on Sept. 28-30, 2012 with the Sept. 30 “AAA 400” NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, the Sept. 29 “OneMain Financial 200” NASCAR Nationwide Series race and the Sept. 28 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race.

For tickets or more information, call 800-441-RACE or visit You can also keep up with the Monster Mile at or on Twitter at @MonsterMile.

Dover Motorsports PR

As Watkins Glen prepares for the upcoming NASCAR at the Glen Sprint Cup Series race, select Walmart stores will offer authentic NASCAR merchandise and host exclusive fan events starting Aug. 9. Customers are invited to attend these special events and enjoy show car and simulator displays – perfect to safely get behind the wheel and feel the power of NASCAR –Aug. 9-11 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., depending on the location.

"Walmart is the champion of the racing fan, and we are committed to providing customers with savings on authentic merchandise, as well as unique race time experiences," said Walmart market manager Mike Judd. "We want to give fans affordability and accessibility, so they can enjoy race time with their families and friends."

Race Time at Walmart
In addition to the fan events happening in Walmart parking lots, area Walmart stores will feature savings on all the food and snacks you need to enjoy the race, plus authentic NASCAR merchandise such as T-shirts and racing flags, with an even bigger selection of exclusive products available at

Participating stores near the Watkins Glen International include:

Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012

Displays free and open to the public include the Kingsford Ultimate Tailgate Truck, Wheaties Show Car, Hefty Show Car Simulator, Coors Light Show Car, Miller Lite Show Car, Hellmann's Show Car Simulator, Cheez-It Show Car Simulator, 5-hour Energy Show Car, No. 24 Pepsi MAX Show Car, No. 88 Diet Mountain Dew Show Car, No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Dodge Charger, Coca-Cola 2-Seat Simulator and Oreo Ritz Show Car at:

Store #2992
3217 Silverback Lane
Painted Post, N.Y.
11 a.m.5 p.m.

Friday, Aug. 10, 2012

Displays free and open to the public include the Kingsford Ultimate Tailgate Truck, Wheaties Show Car, Hefty Show Car Simulator, Coors Light Show Car, Miller Lite Show Car, Hellmann's Show Car Simulator, Cheez-It Show Car Simulator, 5-hour Energy Show Car, No. 24 Pepsi MAX Show Car, No. 88 Diet Mountain Dew Show Car, No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Dodge Charger, Coca-Cola 2-Seat Simulator and Oreo Ritz Show Car at:

Store #1976
1400 County Road 64
Horseheads, N.Y.
11 a.m.5 p.m.

Saturday, Aug. 11, 2012

Displays free and open to the public include the Kingsford Ultimate Tailgate Truck, Wheaties Show Car, Hefty Show Car Simulator, Coors Light Show Car, Miller Lite Show Car, Hellmann's Show Car Simulator, Cheez-It Show Car Simulator, 5-hour Energy Show Car, No. 24 Pepsi MAX Show Car, No. 88 Diet Mountain Dew Show Car, No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Dodge Charger, Coca-Cola 2-Seat Simulator and Oreo Ritz Show Car at:

Store #3221
515 E. 4th St.
Watkins Glen, N.Y.

8:30 a.m.2:30 p.m.

Walmart PR

Eddie Sharp always wanted three trucks on the track in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS). Max Gresham always wanted to return to a championship-caliber team.


Gresham is last year's NASCAR K&N Pro Series East champion, NASCAR's top development series.


This year, both will get their wish with a selected five-race schedule agreement for the second half of the 2012 season.


Gresham will drive the No. 8 Made In USA Brand (MIUSA) Chevrolet for truck races at the Atlanta Motor Speedway, Kentucky Speedway, Martinsville (Va.) Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway.


Eddie Sharp Racing (ESR) will continue to compete for the NCWTS championship with Justin Lofton and Cale Gale.


"I have known the Greshams for a while, and when a series of events changed things for them, this opportunity presented itself," team owner Eddie Sharp said. "They wanted to try something different and we were in a good position to bring them on to our team. We want to run our third truck, which has been a goal of mine from the beginning. So it was a matter of them contacting me and going in this direction.


"I am very honored and excited to have the opportunity to work with Max."


Lofton currently is fourth in the NCWTS point standings with a victory at the Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 18. Lofton won the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) Racing Series championship with ESR in 2009. Gale is 14th in the NCWTS standings.


"We feel that Max has a lot of talent, and has definitively shown his ability to win races and a championship at another level," Sharp said. "Our job has long been to build winners and get people where they want to be. So this is a win-win opportunity. I get a talented young man to put in my equipment, and we are proving to the world that we are for real."


Gresham's debut with the team will come at his home track. He grew up in Griffin, Ga., just minutes from the Atlanta Motor Speedway. He started his career in the Bandolero Bandit Series in 2002 at Atlanta Motor Speedway when he was 8-years old. After advancing to the Legends Car Series he won the track championship in 2005. He also won the Legends Car Semi-Pro National Championship in 2006 at the age of 13.


ESR is another opportunity to establish Gresham's rise in the NASCAR ranks.


"I hate to use the word excited, but I can't help it. I am super excited to go drive for Eddie Sharp Racing. It is hard to describe how much this means to me," the 19-year-old driver said. "It will be a new leaf in my racing career, and a solid step in the right direction to demonstrate the potential that I have in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. It is going to be a strong step, and a productive one for me."


And definitely a step that satisfies goals both Sharp and Gresham have had for a while.



Making his first start on the newly repaved Pocono Raceway in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series on Saturday, Dakoda Armstrong and his No. 98 EverFi Toyota team came with a brand new Tundra, prepared for competition.  After fighting through loose handling conditions in the first portion of the 50 lap shootout, Armstrong rebounded from a mistake on pit road and claimed the 12th finishing position in the Pocono Mountains 125.


The No. 98 EverFi crew, led by crew chief Dan Stillman, worked out all of the new truck kinks during the only practice session the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) competitors were given on Friday. Stillman made some adjustments to help loosen up Armstrong's Tundra for qualifying, giving him enough speed for the 18th starting position. 


With the loose handling conditions returning to the EverFi Tundra in the first few laps after the drop of the green flag on Saturday, Armstrong slide back a few positions and elected to ride it out until the first round of pit stops. Stillman encouraged him to follow the trucks in front of him to help his line.


"These guys in front of us are a little faster right now, let's just ride behind them and see if we can learn something," Stillman relayed to his driver. 


Green flag pit stops came up just after lap 20, giving Armstrong's ThorSport Racing pit crew a chance to give their driver the adjustments and four tires he needed. Under the quick pit stop, Armstrong came in too quickly and overshot his pit stall, forcing him to make another lap and come back around for his service. The miscue cost him enough time on the racetrack to put him one lap down to the leaders.  


Armstrong's fortune would turn when the second caution of the afternoon came on lap 35, when he was moved back on the lead lap by virtue of the "Lucky Dog" free pass. The caution was a blessing in disguise as it allowed Armstrong to get his lap back, as well as bring his EverFi Tundra down pit road for four fresh tires and more adjustments. He had reported a vibration after the first stop, and the crew discovered a leak in the left rear after the stop.


With just 12 laps of racing remaining after the caution, Armstrong was given little time to improve his running position. Dodging a multi-truck pileup with less than ten laps to go, he kept his nose clean for a 12th place finish. 


"I apologize to my EverFi crew for missing the pit stall under our first stop, because that put us in pretty big hole we had to dig out of," Armstrong explained. "But the guys never gave up and we caught a good break to put us back on the lead lap, and then catching that left rear before it went flat was really lucky. Our Tundra was pretty good there at the end, but this race was just too short, and we ran out of laps."



Driver introductions for the Sprint Cup races at Bristol Motor Speedway are unique in the sport – and for the upcoming IRWIN Tools Night Race Aug. 25, a couple of new twists have been added.

Well-known ring announcer Michael Buffer, whose “Let’s Get Ready To Rumble” catchphrase is known world-wide, takes part in driver introductions, adding his distinct voice to each driver’s entrance from a stage in Turn 3 of the track.

Fans have been involved pre-race ceremonies at BMS before, including introducing themselves before the drivers. This time, BMS guests get to determine who does it the best.

Fans will be asked to vote, via the Sprint Unlimited Text to Vote, for the driver's introduction they like best. The winning driver then will receive $10,000 that will go to his or her favorite charitable organization.

In the distinctive pre-race ceremony at Bristol Motor Speedway, Sprint Cup drivers select a specific song to make their entrance. Many become memorable, including Brad Keselowski’s “Won’t Back Down”, and Tony Stewart’s “How Do You Like Me Now?” The highlight of last March’s ceremony featured Denny Hamlin dancing “The Dougie” on his way down the ramp.


Bryan Silas and his family-owned T3R team left Pocono (Pa.) Raceway Saturday afternoon with confidence after mounting their best run of the season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) Pocono Mountains 125.

Silas, a native of Stuart, Florida returned to one of his favorable tracks, Pocono Raceway, otherwise known as “The Tricky Triangle.” With an encouraging resume at the 2.5-mile track in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards, the Floridian was hoping to utilize some of that knowledge in the No. 99 Rockingham Speedway Ford F-150.

After netting the 21st fastest time in the lone practice session on Friday, the Concord, North Carolina-based team led by Motorsports veteran Cal Boprey made some routine adjustments to their Ford F-150 for qualifying. In time trials, Silas left nothing on the table and maneuvered the 19th fastest lap overall, a personal best for the team and driver.

Pleased with the outcome of qualifying, the team turned their attention towards the 50-lap sprint where Silas was able to steadily hold his own and run competitively in the top-20.

Despite manhandling the chassis throughout the race, Silas was able to race the competition and even avoid some late race carnage to set him towards a final dash to the finish where the No. 99 came to the checkered flag and the team claimed 17th, their second top-20 outing of the season.

“It was a good weekend for T3R,” said Silas. “I’m real proud of Cal and all of the guys for digging hard and giving me a good truck. We had our career-best qualifying run ever in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and that doesn’t come without hard work by everyone. The truck was pretty good in the race, we worked on it and were able to avoid some of the chaos out there and brought home a satisfying run. We’ll take this and move onto to Michigan and hope for better results there.”

Next up for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is a stop in the Motor City for the running of the VFW 200 at Michigan International Speedway set to launch on Saturday, August 18. The 12th race of the season will be aired live on SPEED beginning at 12:30 p.m.



No right click

Please link the article.