Follow us on Twitter @SpeedwayDigest
Danica Patrick Phoenix Accident Quotes
WHAT HAPPENED OUT THERE?
"Obviously I blew a right front. No real warning. I wasn't that tight either; I was sliding a little bit. I felt like most of the day I was chasing the rear. It was a little unexpected. I took a hard hit to the right, and then on the left. I'm fine. The cars and the tracks are so safe. As a driver that's a nice feeling. It doesn't change the fact that we aren't going to get any points really coming out of today, and it would have been nice. I was just saying that there isn't enough garage space for all of the cars, so unfortunately we're parked in the dirt this weekend. It would have been nice to get these points here, and then...especially off of our eighth last weekend (in the Daytona 500), and then have a decent run in (Las) Vegas. Then when they re-establish the pits and the garage area, we would have been in better shape. But, these points in the beginning of the year are so important. We were making progress, but unfortunately, our day ended early."
THAT WAS A REALLY HARD HIT. WAS THAT THE HARDEST YOU’VE EVER HIT?
“Oh, probably Daytona was a little bit bigger. And it was on the right and the left. So whenever those right-fronts go, they always hit hard because you don’t broadside. You kind of hit more straight on. But I took a hard hit on both side, but I’m fine. NASCAR is doing a good job with safety, but yeah, no real good warning. The car wasn’t all that tight and I was mostly chasing the rear. And there was no vibration that told me in the lap before that told me it was going to happen. So, for me, it just sucks to lose the points. Everybody works hard and after last weekend we really just wanted to get to these three races and get some solid points so that when they re-establish the garage area we could; we worked in the dirt this weekend (laughed), so I really wanted my guys to get in the garage area. So, we’ll just have to come at ‘em at Vegas. I really, really like Vegas so it should suit me well. But yeah, we were having a steady day. Not great, but we were making progress.”
Team Chevy Racing PR
Goodyear Launches New Ads During Biggest Race of Season
The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company (Nasdaq: GT) has announced that it is taking to the race track to launch its new North American integrated advertising campaign during the biggest event of the NASCAR season, the Daytona 500.
Designed to highlight those experts who choose Goodyear's tires for their superior performance, the new ads focus on the relationship between top NASCAR drivers and their choice of Goodyear. The new advertising, which continues to leverage the tremendous equity the company has generated among experts over its history, will debut this week in television and print ads starting during the Daytona 500 in Daytona Beach, Fla.
"As our 'More Driven' campaign has progressed, we have successfully shown consumers the history and tradition of Goodyear, as well as the passion, innovation and expertise Goodyear uses to provide tires for superior performance in challenging conditions," said Gary Melliere, General Manager - Goodyear Brand/Sponsorships. "In our new advertising, we continue to showcase that what we learn making tires for expert drivers who face grueling conditions, such as NASCAR, inspires what we roll into consumer tires."
Television advertising begins this week, including airing on FOX during the Feb. 24 Daytona 500, the premier race that kicks off the NASCAR season, which is watched by approximately 20 million viewers.
The campaign's initial television advertisement, entitled 'Most Demanding Customer,' showcases NASCAR and its drivers as a proving ground for Goodyear's tire innovation. The commercial highlights the fast-paced sport with strong racing images that help display how highly competitive racing – at speeds of 200 mph – put Goodyear tires through torture tests every week on different tracks and a variety of surfaces. "These types of conditions provide continuous opportunities for Goodyear's engineers to further develop tires for superior performance, both on the track and on the highway," said Melliere.
Employing a fully integrated marketing effort, Goodyear also is using radio and print advertising, along with a strong digital campaign to reach millions of online consumers. The interactive campaign will be supported by "always on" search marketing, in addition to appearing on popular search engines and websites. During the race broadcast, unique "blimp pops" – in-program messages featuring an animated Goodyear Blimp – will appear on-screen to further deliver the brand's 'More Driven' message.
The integrated marketing efforts were developed by Goodyear and its creative advertising agency, GSD&M Idea City of Austin, Texas, and digital agency, Digitas of Boston.
Victory Junction, founded by NASCAR's Petty family, is gearing up for its 10th summer of serving chronically ill children from across the country. To honor this milestone, Phil Parsons Racing is featuring the camp's 'Celebrating 10 Empowering Summers' logo on the decklid of the No. 98 K-Love Ford Fusion at Daytona International Speedway.
"It's hard to believe that we are closing in on a decade," said Victory Junction's Founder and Chairman, Kyle Petty, "I am incredibly grateful that Phil (Parsons) and K-Love were willing to help us celebrate this milestone by acknowledging Victory Junction on their Daytona 500 car. The support my family and camp has received from the NASCAR community since Adam's death continues to amaze me."
K-Love, the No. 98 team's primary sponsor, is not new to supporting the Randleman, NC-based camp. The contemporary Christian radio group adopted Victory Junction as one of its featured causes in 2012 highlighting the camp on their radio stations, website, and social media outlets.
"Bringing partnerships like K-Love and Victory Junction together is one of the many great benefits of being a part of NASCAR," explained car owner Phil Parsons. "K-Love understands that for Victory Junction, every partnership is an opportunity to help broaden its donor base and assure continued interest in its mission."
To date, 17,832 children and families have benefitted from the programming and love shared by the donors, volunteers and staff at Victory Junction. Beginning in June, another 1000+ campers will be empowered to reach beyond their illnesses and just be kids.
Phil Parsons Racing PR
American Ethanol Enhances Sponsorship of Richard Childress Racing with Driver Austin Dillon in 2013
American Ethanol announced its plans to enhance its partnership with Richard Childress Racing and driver Austin Dillon for the 2013 NASCAR® season. Dillon will race the No. 33 American Ethanol Chevrolet in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series™ at Michigan International Speedway on June 16 and will drive a RCR-fielded entry in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series™ at Eldora Speedway on July 24 with an American Ethanol paint scheme.
"American Ethanol is extremely pleased to once again partner with Austin Dillon, Richard Childress and the entire RCR team to help promote a sustainable homegrown American fuel that is better for our environment, reduces our dependence on foreign oil and creates jobs right here in the U.S., while revitalizing rural economies across America," said Tom Buis, CEO of Growth Energy.
American Ethanol, launched by Growth Energy and the National Corn Growers Association along with the support of other partners, is a breakthrough brand that seeks to expand consumer awareness of the benefits of ethanol and E15. Since the program launch for the 2011 season, NASCAR drivers have run more than 3 million miles on renewable Sunoco Green E15.
"We want to show the people coast-to-coast there is a great alternative to imported oil and our association with NASCAR and RCR is doing that extremely well," said Jon Holzfaster, a Paxton, NE farmer and chairman of the National Corn Growers Association's NASCAR Advisory Committee. "Ethanol is also responsible for bringing a rural renaissance from Main Street to the family farm."
With help from American Ethanol, Dillon is scheduled to make his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series™ start since clinching the 2011 Driver's Championship by entering the Series' inaugural race at Eldora Speedway on July 24.
American Ethanol will also serve as an associate sponsor for Dillon's No. 3 Chevrolet for the full 2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series™ season and as an associate sponsor for Dillon's limited 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series™ schedule.
"It feels good to be able to help spread the news about American Ethanol and encourage every American to run the fuel of the future, American Ethanol, in their personal vehicles," said Dillon. "If American Ethanol can withstand the rigors of NASCAR, it can withstand everyday driving. Homegrown biofuels like American Ethanol have stepped up to help our nation's economy, and are proving to be a better fuel. I am proud to wear the American Ethanol colors in NASCAR and I hope I can bring them to Victory Lane in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series™ and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series™ in 2013."
Dillon is an official spokesperson for American Ethanol, the most commercially-viable alternative that America currently has to offset the economic impact of foreign petroleum. Corn ethanol reduces emissions by 59 percent. And by strengthening America's energy independence, ethanol helps create American jobs - studies have shown that for every $1 sent overseas for oil, $1.55 leaves the U.S. economy.
NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race Commercial Explores Who Owns the Town and Who’s Takin’ Home the Money
It’s the biggest stampede of the year. Everyone has their eye on the prize. But who’s willing to go all the way to take home the $1 million purse?
In the new ad campaign for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, titled “Stampede,” the biggest stars of NASCAR are ready to unleash all of the 800 horsepower of their Gen 6 stallions to fight for all the money – and the bragging rights.
The NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race, held under the lights on Saturday night, May 18, 2013, is the biggest All-Star event in all of sports and the ultimate stand-off among the top drivers in NASCAR in a no-holds-barred battle for the $1 million prize. The race, now in its 29th year, annually produces some of the best duels and biggest drama in racing.
The “Stampede” ad campaign, created and directed by Victory Management Group for Charlotte Motor Speedway, plays off of that theme. The commercial was shot primarily on an authentic wild west set, complete with saloon, church, jail, general store and hotel.
The spot opens with a panning shot of the Charlotte Motor Speedway track with “Driver Wanted” posters on the track wall. It then cuts to an old western saloon, where Clint Bowyer and Denny Hamlin are plotting to steal all the money. Dale Earnhardt Jr., busts through the saloon doors with guns drawn to put a hold on the heist. When bar keep Ray Evernham and patron Jeff Hammond call for the sheriff, none other than the “King,” Richard Petty, comes to the rescue.
“Doing ad shoots like these are a lot of fun,” said Earnhardt Jr. “I’m mostly in a firesuit in commercials, and we don’t usually get to dress up like this. I’m excited to be in the All-Star Race this year, so it’s great to be in the commercial, too. Maybe I’ll take home all the money!”
The campaign also includes radio, online, outdoor and print executions. In addition, the theme will be delivered at the racetrack with special Wild West Whisky River-themed hospitality and entertainment, including country music star Billy Currington.
The TV commercial will debut during the Daytona 500 weekend, and will run nationally on SPEED and in key local markets on Fox and regional cable networks. Visit www.CharlotteMotorSpeedway.com for outtakes and behind-the-scenes action of the shoot.
"The fans have loved this campaign over the last couple of years and we’ve really been able to integrate it nicely into the event experience and event promise. We wanted to continue to showcase the best drivers in the world and let fans get a look at their personalities away from the track,” said Tim Schuldt, vice president of consumer marketing for Charlotte Motor Speedway. “We also wanted to showcase the intensity included in the biggest All-Star event in all of sports. The NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race delivers intense rivalries that take place at 200 mph and with $1 million going to the winner. Adding Billy Currington to the mix, well, the entertainment value for the fans has never been better. This campaign helps bring all of that to life!"
The campaign also features a special guest star – long-time Charlotte race fan Mary Allen. Allen has been coming to the races at Charlotte Motor Speedway since 1994 and hasn’t missed a race since 1997. She was randomly selected from nearly 10,000 entrants in the “Join the All-Stars” promotion. Allen won tickets to the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race on May 18, pre-race pit passes, VIP parking for the race and a role in Charlotte Motor Speedway’s 2013 NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race commercial.
"Gentlemen, start your engines" - Daytona and Chevrolet, two of the great names in US racing are coming to Auto Club Revolution®
It’s impossible to think of all-out American racing without also thinking about the Daytona 500 and some of the iconic American car brands that have graced that incredible track. The names just roll off the tongue – Ford, Dodge, Pontiac, Chevrolet.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series gets underway this weekend with the Daytona 500 and, to coincide with the race, Auto Club Revolution has released a new version of the Daytona International Speedway for racing fans to enjoy.
The Daytona International Speedway represents the third NASCAR race course to be added to Auto Club Revolution's already impressive line up. Competition is fast and furious, as Daytona launched with the classic oval track. Players will be on an adrenaline rush as they hurtle around the 2.5mile tri-oval superspeedway, tackling 31 degree banking turns while jostling for the chequered flag. Further routes will be introduced to the track at a later date.
Want a thrill seeking ride to enjoy the track? Then check out the 2011 Chevrolet Camaro SS. The Camaro, the latest in a line-up of classic American muscle cars, packs a lot of punch alongside the Dodge (Viper, Charger and Challenger) and Ford Shelby GT500 already available in the online game. With over 400bhp, and 1st gear good for 50mph racers can put the rear-wheel-drive Camaro SS through its paces in Auto Club Revolution.
Further updates, including improved force feedback and rumble for those using racing wheels; race camera updates to increase visibility and the sense of speed; and connectivity, load time and stability enhancements for an overall improved player experience.
Racing fans can jump in on the action by visiting autoclubrevolution.com.
RCR Post Race Report -- NSCS Budweiser Duels
- Richard Childress Racing teammates finished first (Kevin Harvick - First Budweiser Duel), third (Austin Dillon - Second Budweiser Duel), seventh (Paul Menard - Second Budweiser Duel) and eighth (Jeff Burton - Second Budweiser Duel).
- Harvick led twice for a total of 23 laps
- All four RCR drivers finished within the top 10 in the following NASCAR Loop Data and Statistics categories:
- Average Running Position (Menard-7.617, Harvick-6.883, Burton-5.917 and Dillon-3.733)
- Driver Rating (Menard-98.2, Harvick-116.0, Burton-85.7, Dillon-111.3)
- Fastest Driver Early in a Run (Menard-197.877mph, Harvick-196.738mph, Burton-197.883mph, Dillon-197.787mph)
- Green Flag Passes (Menard-43, Harvick-60, Burton-40, Dillon-44)
- Green Flag Speed (Menard-196.877mph, Harvick-196.235mph, Burton-196.523mph, Dillon-197.240mph)
- Laps in Top 15 (Menard and Dillon-60 of 60 laps for 100 percent. Harvick and Burton 59 of 60 laps for 98.3 percent)
- Quality Passes ***passes made while running in the top 15*** (Menard-39, Harvick-55, Burton-34, Dillon-41)
- Speed in Traffic (Menard-197.234mph, Harvick-196.116mph, Burton-196.821mph, Dillon-196.969mph)
The next scheduled Sprint Cup Series race is the 55th running of the Dayton 500 on Sunday, Feb. 24. The 'Great American Race' is scheduled to be televised live on FOX beginning at 1 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
Menard Finishes Seventh in Budweiser Duel at Daytona,
Will Lineup 16th for 'Great American Race'
Paul Menard started the second Budweiser Duel, 150-mile qualifying race at Daytona International Speedway from the seventh spot on Thursday afternoon. Menard maintained his position inside the top 10 in the opening laps, running the bottom line until lap nine when the 22-car field began to spread out single file. Running ninth on lap 20, Menard was turning lap times faster than the leader, when he communicated to the crew that he was happy with the handling of the PEAK/ Menards Chevrolet SS. At lap 41, crew chief "Slugger" Labbe called his driver into the pits for a routine green-flag pit stop, and the No. 27 crew went to work adding fuel and changing right-side tires. Coming out of the pits in the eighth position, Menard quickly made his way toward the front of the field and moved into third at lap 50. With just 10 laps remaining in the 60-lap event, the Eau Claire, Wis., native was working the draft with Kasey Kahne, when Kahne moved up to the high line to make a move for the lead. Unable to stay hooked up with Kahne, the No. 27 machine was shuffle back to seventh on lap 52. Running single file, Menard maintained his position during the final eight laps to take the checkered flag with a top-10 finish. By virtue of his seventh-place finish in the non-points paying qualifying race, the PEAK/Menards Chevrolet SS team will start 16th for the 55th running of "The Great American Race" on Sunday, Feb. 24.
Start - 7 Finish - 7 Laps Led - 0 Points - N/A
PAUL MENARD QUOTE:
"I was really happy with the way the PEAK/Menards Chevrolet drove in the Budweiser Duel. It was a good practice session for us to see how the car is going to handle under race conditions. I was disappointed we didn't get a better finish, we had a good run and were up to third with 10 laps to go. We had a lot of momentum and had caught the lead pack. We were working with Kasey (Kahne) well and he moved up the track and I didn't have a run. We just kind of mistimed it a little bit and it cost us both a few spots. We learned a lot about how the new car handles in the draft, and we have some ideas of what we can do to get a little more speed out of the car on Sunday. All in all I feel good about our chances in the Daytona 500."
Harvick Goes Two-for-Two during Budweiser Speedweeks
Winning the First Budweiser Duel
Kevin Harvick and the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet SS team followed up their Sprint Unlimited win on Saturday night by pulling into Victory Lane Thursday afternoon following the first Budweiser Duel at Daytona International Speedway. The Bakersfield, Calif., native started the Daytona 500-qualifying event from the 13th position and methodically worked his way toward the front of the field, taking over the lead on lap 37. Harvick held onto the top spot after coming down pit road for fuel and right-side tires on lap 41. A speedy pit stop and a fast Chevrolet SS allowed Harvick to grab the checkered flag for the second non-points paying event of the 2013 season. Courtesy of Harvick's victory the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet SS, the team will line up third for the 55th running of the Dayton 500 on Sunday, Feb. 24.
Start - 16 Finish - 1 Laps Led - 23 Points - N/A
KEVIN HARVICK QUOTE:
"I just want to thank everybody on our Budweiser Chevrolet team. To win the sponsor's race (Budweiser Duels) here (Daytona International Speedway) is hard to align and put it all together. It all worked out for us today. Gil (Martin, crew chief) made a great call on pit road, and it all worked out. We learned a lot during the last two races, and we're ready to go racing on Sunday."
Burton Finishes Eighth in Budweiser Duel, Will Start 18th in the 2013 Daytona 500
Jeff Burton and the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS team finished eighth in the second Budweiser Duel qualifying race at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday afternoon. After finishing 20th in Daytona 500 qualifying on Sunday, the South Boston Va., native started 10th in the second 60-lap showdown that determined the starting lineup for the 55th annual Daytona 500. Burton immediately vaulted into the top five and settled into the fourth position while most of the 22-car field ran single file until it was time for green-flag pit stops on lap 40. Crew chief Luke Lambert called the driver in for fresh right-side tires and enough Sunoco Green E15 fuel to finish the 150-mile event. Running seventh with 12 laps to go, Burton made a move to the inside lane, but received no drafting help from his peers. After losing the draft of the lead pack, a caution-free race didn't allow Burton to regain track position and relegated him to an eighth-place result. With the top-10 effort, the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet team will start 18th in Sunday's Daytona 500.
Start - 10 Finish - 8 Laps Led - 0 Points - N/A
JEFF BURTON QUOTE:
"This race gave us the opportunity to try some different things out and I think we learned a lot about what the cars will do when drafting in a pack. Even though we didn't get the finish we were hoping for, we will have a good starting position for the Daytona 500 on Sunday. I'm excited about our chances."
Austin Dillon Qualifies for his First-Career Daytona 500 with Third-Place Finish in Budweiser Duel at Daytona International Speedway
Austin Dillon drove Richard Childress Racing's No. 33 Honey Nut Cheerios Chevrolet SS to a third-place finish in the second Budweiser Duel qualifying race at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday afternoon and will start eighth in Sunday's Daytona 500. It will mark the 22-year-old driver's first-career start in "The Great American Race". Dillon started the 60-lap qualifier from the eighth spot and maintained his position within the top-10 for the duration of the event. Dillon and his Honey Nut Cheerios team made a single pit stop during the 125-mile race for right-side tires, Sunoco Green E15 fuel and a track bar adjustment to tighten a loose-handling condition in traffic. Exiting the pits in the eighth position with 20 laps remaining, Dillon utilized the high line of the track to advance to the third position and secure a starting position in Sunday's race.
Start - 8 Finish - 4 Laps Led - 0 Points - N/A
Consistency favors Mears and Geico Team in Daytona
The Germain Racing team spent the off-season focused on preparing for the Daytona 500. If there was any doubt if their time spent away from family and friends was invested wisely, the last few days should have answered that question. The GEICO team and driver Casey Mears arrived at Daytona International Speedway poised for success, and the work committed over the winter months quickly manifested itself when practice got underway.
Mears was 17th on the speed charts in both sessions on Saturday, February 16th, before he picked up speed in Sunday’s time trials where he navigated the 2.5-mile superspeedway in just 46.037 seconds, at a rate of speed of 195.495 miles per hour. His effort landed him on the outside of row four, in the eighth position, for the Budweiser Duel 150’s. Mears and his #13 GEICO Ford Fusion would take part in Duel 1.
Before the Duels got underway on Thursday, the Germain Racing team would receive a bit of good news when GEICO announced they would sponsor the team for the full season in both 2013 and 2014. Reeling from an adrenaline bump, the GEICO team hurriedly made their way to the starting grid where their driver was soon to do battle to determine if the GEICO Fusion would secure a spot in Sunday’s Daytona 500.
When the green flag turned the field loose for a short 60-laps of racing action, Mears quickly made his way to the front and sat in the third position by the second lap. He moved the #13 GEICO Fusion into second on lap five and did not depart the position until 34 laps later. Mears would require only a single fuel stop to complete the event. After surrendering third place to visit pit road on lap 41, the Germain Racing pit crew quickly returned the GEICO Fusion to the racing surface one spot to the good, in the second position.
With just eight laps to go, Mears was riding in fifth when his rear view mirror filled with the image of Denny Hamlin and Carl Edwards in an incident that resulted in a hard crash for the latter. Mears and his GEICO Fusion would restart in the 7th position with just four laps remaining in the race. When the checkered flag halted the field, Mears had hustled to an eighth place finish in his first event of the 2013 season. When the final Daytona 500 starting grid was set after Duel 2, Mears was slated to roll off from the 17th position come Sunday afternoon.
“It’s been a real consistent week for our team and we’re going to have a fast car for the Daytona 500 on Sunday,” Mears said. “We started our day off with great news from the folks at GEICO that they’re on-board fulltime for 2013 and 2014, and there’s not much of a better way to start off a season. I’m so appreciative of their commitment and the commitment of our team owner, Bob Germain, and it makes me proud to be associated with these guys. I’m really happy for all of the guys on this GEICO team who have worked so hard in the off-season; it’s great to see them rewarded for their efforts. Sunday will be fun.”
The scene in the Motorcraft/Quick Lane garage area at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday was a tale of two race cars. On one side of the aisle, there was a battered No. 21 Ford Fusion, one that led more than half of the first of two Budweiser Duel qualifying races, but was later wiped out in a crash.
On the other side sat a brand-new Fusion, one that had never even been rolled on asphalt before it was unloaded from the Wood Brothers’ hauler.
The first car, despite the damage, did its job. It was third fastest in qualifying, assuring Trevor Bayne and the team a starting spot for Sunday’s Daytona 500. Bayne will start 33rd, one spot worse than he started in 2011 when he won the 500.
The other car now is poised to pick up where the first one left off. First, there’s plenty of preparation to be done by crew chief Donnie Wingo and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane crew.
“We may not even practice on Friday, but that’s OK,” said team co-owner Eddie Wood. “We didn’t practice on Friday in 2011, and we won that race.”
There also is a final practice session set for Saturday, and Wood said he was confident the new car would be race ready by then.
Despite the battered car in the background on Thursday, Wood and the rest of the Motorcraft crew seemed upbeat.
“You can’t be disappointed when you lead more that half the race,” he said.
Indeed, for a time, Bayne and his red-and-white Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion looked like winners in the first of Thursday’s Budweiser Duels. Bayne started on the outside pole and passed pole-sitter Danica Patrick on the opening lap. He led the first 36 circuits, but slid entering pit road, flat-spotting his right-front tire, and setting up a four-tire change.
Still, he was in position to race his way back to the front when he was swept up in a multi-car crash on the backstretch with six laps to go.
“It is unfortunate because we had a fast race car, and you don’t want to tear that stuff up,” Bayne said. “I know they have a good back-up car for me, and we will try to get it on Sunday.”
Wood Brothers Racing PR