Tuesday, March 28, 2006

NASCAR's War at Bristol with the Busch brothers on top.

Good afternoon everyone, the title says it all after last weekends battle on the bull ring of Bristol Motor Speedway for both of NASCAR top series. So what really happened, the battle at Bristol for both Friday and Saturday were basiclly the same, to battle not just rain, but a light snow storm, now I live in New England, so that light to us up here. After everything was cancelled on Friday, Saturday possed major problem again with snow storms, but NASCAR Busch Series officials not only raced, but put on a good show in between the snow storms. After six hours of stop and go action, it was Kyle Busch merging supreme in holding off Kevin Harvick to take the victory in the first 300 Busch series race at Bristol.

Sunday was a complete 180 with just cold weather in the air, this 500 lapper is simply described as pit bulls going at it for one piece of real estate and thats what race fans including me love about it, the bottom grove was the only groom, there was really not second grove all day, put that didn't stop the faster cars from passing on the highsides a couple of times. The 500 came with lots of stopping and going of its own with about 20 caution flags, that had to be some record. At Bristol there is only one way to really get by, is to bump them up out of the way. By the end of this race with just 4 laps to go, it was Kurt Busch in the blue #2 dodge doing a bump and run on Kenseth to take the lead and victory over a hard-charging Kevin Harvick.

After the race, Jeff Gordon showed his temper with pushing Kenseth after Kenseth in the final laps did a bump and run of his own on Gordon.

Note to all of the developers building racetracks: instead of building cookie-cutter racetracks, build another Bristol, maybe not using concrete just to see if we can get rim riding back. Bristol is sold out year after year with no problems. I love racetracks like Bristol, Martinsville, Richmond, you know close racing with out an airow war.

While at Bristol, yesterday NASCAR took advantage of the track and tested the Car Of Tomorrow with Brett Bodine at the wheel, along with Jeff Burton testing the Chevrolet COT version. Pictures of that test session are at Jayski.com . Well that's that from Bristol, now its another short track next week at Martinsville with the Truck Series and Cup Series.

from my desk at home.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Two Motorsports burning questions, here's My Take

Credit: Image borrowed from Serious Wheels

I was watching WindTunnel on Speed last week and the question of the week was: Are diesel racecars an exciting technological breakthough or a danger to the sport as we know it?

This question came about because of last weeks huge win in a Audi TDI (diesel-powered) prototype race car at the 12 hours of Sebring. Basically, Audi is the first (that I know of) to create and successfully not only race, but win in a major sports car series race of this caliber and to do it on diesel power, not gasoline. Now Banks Power has been creating these types of vehicles for years and racing them at the flats for years and setting records. In my opinion, its NOT a danger to the sport, but a huge accomplishment/breakthough in Motorsports. With that said, I am hearing that there are more race cars in the works from other manufacturers for not only the 24 hours of LeMans, but other sports car races. One thing that I would like to see is more and more race cars in not only sports car racing (American LeMan's Series) driving them, but most of motorsports too.

Moving from the subject of just diesel powered race cars, the IRL Indy Car Series is racing ethanol in there indycars this season. NASCAR has finally moved from lead gasoline to unleaded gasoline in 2007-2008 (forget the exact year), Motorsports racing series should be running on diesel fuel, its more powerful (octane) and its in a real controlled environment.

The second burning question among others is from an article called "Public perception: Is it half-full or half-empty? by Marty Smith, NASCAR.com":

This question has come up because Atlanta Motor Speedway and California Speedway both don't sell out every Cup race. California Speedway sold out many times when they had just one cup date, but now they don't. As for as Atlanta Motor Speedway, I don't know, maybe its the cold weather, the same cold weather that took out "The Rock" North Carolina Speedway that had great racing. One big thing has that has came up, Bruton Smith (ISC) owns not just both speedways in question, now wants another Cup date for Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

basically here's what to do:
1. Leave speedways like New Hampshire International Speedway, Dover International Speedway and Pocono Raceway that have standing offers from Smith to purchase them along, if he ever purchased them, Example: NHIS would loss either 1 or both cup races and they sell out both cup events ever year, I know because I go to NHIS twice a year.

2. Take 1 cup date from California Speedway and give it to Las Vegas and see how they do.

3. Leave Atlanta along, the racing is great and there are more people in the stands than California speedway. Just remember ISC owns 12 racetracks with 19 cup dates, plus the Nextel Cup All-star race and the Budweiser Shootout. The cup schedule is only 36 races.

Race fans know whats going to happen if this keeps going, NASCAR is going to award one cup date to every racetrack on the schedule to fix this problem and we are all out of luck to see cup race.

What do you think?

Monday, March 20, 2006

Motorsports and Auto Industry Headlines

Fully updated Monday...

In the Busch Series, Darrell Waltrip will drive the #99 Aaron's Dream Machine for Michael Waltrip at Martinsville's Busch Race on under the lights on July 22nd. (Credit: NASCAR.com) Steven Wallace will drive the #64 Top Flight Dodge for Rusty Wallace in the Busch Series Sharpie Mini 300 at Bristol next week. Jeff Burton came out victories in Saturday's Busch Series race.

In Sunday's Formula One race, Fisichella and Alonso goes 1-2 in simply put domanating fashion of starting on the pole and winning in the Malaysia.

In the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series, (According to Jayski) Rusty Wallace was asked by NASCAR to help with the Car Of Tomorrow and (from Leftlane News) NASCAR is going to test the COT next week at Bristol Motor Speedway. Earlier today, the Nextel Cup Series finally got the green flag in the Golden Corral 500 were it was Kasey Kahne blisting around Atlanta Motor Speedway to pickup his 2nd career victory. Dale Earnhardt Jr. picked up a 3rd place finish and Bill Lester driving the #23 for BDR battled all day long finishing 38th 6 laps down, the goal for them, to make the race and complete as most laps as possible and finish the race, DONE, great job...

A couple of news pieces that cought my eye in the Auto Industry, (News and image from Leftlane News) Scion will be debuting a new sports car called "fuse" at the NY Auto Show and Chrysler has decided to keep its Smart brand even after selling the rights to the Smart roadster and coupe to British consortium “Project Kimber.”

One big thing about the Smart brand is, Fifth Gear (a TV show from the UK on Speed) tested this vehicle pictured above and ended up going to a huge rally with theres. I like the idea, why not bring the Smart brand to the United States in a limited edition or supply and see what happens, with the gasoline prices going up and may top $3.00 a gallon again, the Smarts have good MPG, its good for a commuter car and parking in Boston could be a plus.

I do have one other opinion on something, What is up with the VW's GTI commerical Unpimp your auto...This has got to be one of most stupidest commericals I have ever seen, this wouldn't make me buy a GTI...

Sunday, March 19, 2006

ALMS has historical event at 12 Hours of Sebring

(Quote and photo from ALMS website) "The new prototype is the first diesel car in the world to win a major sports car race."

The broadcast crew and the American LeMans Series calls yesterdays 12 hours of Sebring a historical event with the headline reading "Audi diesel-powered R10 TDI of Tom Kristensen, Allan McNish and Rinaldo Capello power there way to victory in the 12 hours of Sebring."

What really happened: There were two things going on at the 12 hours of Sebring with one being the historical aspect going on in the P1 class with the two Audi TDI's (diesel-powered) prototypes that showed the entire motorsports world that diesel-powered vehicles can win and win they did, the #2 Audi TDI won overall, they had to start from pitroad after a problem race morning and could not start on the pole along side there team Audi.

The other, the 12 hour endorse race that came out with flying colors with lots of passing and interesting driving on this non-smooth surface, for any team to finish, let along finish upfront is a goal in itself, the surface is very bumpy to say the least, I guess it was an old airbase or something, but it makes for good racing. Having a car that not only handles, but sets fast laps is necessary. Every team had there problems though this 12 hour event, whether it was mechanicals with a gearbox or fuel pump to a simply, overheating problems. The trend thoughout this event was if you had a team car, you or your team car had big problems and were either out of the race or many laps down.

The race also had the #4 Chevy Corvette of Olivier Beretta, Oliver Gavin and Jan Magnussen winning.

Overall, I love 12 hour and 24 hour endorse races, including those that start in the day and go into the night and for the 12 hours of sebring, I watch the entire speed coverage and enjoyed it, simply a great for an endorse race.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

NASCAR Rolls the dice in Vegas

This past weekend, the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series was back in action after a weekend off, with all of the talk and hype in odds before the race of who would win the 400 with either Roush or Hendrick winner, those were good odds. The odds paid off with an interesting race with some side-by side racing and passing. Most of the 400 was the same as years past with the lead streeching it out, but cautions flags graced the field along with blown right front tires.. In the end, the green-white-checkered would play a huge roll in deciding the outcome of this race, before the last caution came out it was between Jimmie Johnson in Hendrick and Matt Kenseth who was leading in Roush, when the field went back green, it was't until the white flag lap going into turn 3 were Johnson drove deep into turn 3 on the outside of Kenseth and down the frontstraight with Jimmie Johnson repeating once again in taking the victory in the 400.

That was the same headline I wrote last year, "Jimmie Johnson wins in Vegas", but one twist, without Chad Knaus..What is up with this team, 2 victories and a 2nd place finish with the points lead in the first three races, we have seen this before, can he keep it up, ask me again in September at Richmond.

"My Take" Should Las Vegas Motor Speedway get a second cup date? Should they also resurface/upgrade the Speedway including adding 20 degrees of banking?

Second Cup date: No, if it means taking it away from a track like Bristol, Martinsville or someother good race track. Smith would have to take it from one of his other tracks, California Speedway would be one in my opinion. That region with California Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Phoenix (PIR) are within 2 - 3 hours apart from each other and don't need another Cup date, try other series.

Rebuilding the speedway with new fan zone and 20 degrees of banking including a closer pitroad: In this fans opinion, go for it, but whats the racing going to be like on a new surface...

One thing: Did anyone caught the Formula One race from Bahrain, damn, there was passing, lots of passing thoughout the field and what a fight for the victory between Alonso and Schumacher & during the hole fight, Raikkonen, who started dead last on the field was on a one stop plan coming up though the field to finish 3rd. What a great race for Formula One and Great job to Alonso picking up were he leftoff in winning the race and Ferrari is back.

This Formula One season is going to be interesting with all new rules including new tire rule and qualifing process.

Thursday, March 9, 2006

Grand American and Busch Series South of the border in Motorsports Rundown - Mar 9th

With the Nextel Cup Series and Truck Series off this past weekend, it was the Busch Series time to shine, for there 2nd trip south of the border to Mexico for there first road course race of the season.

Saturday’s Grand-American Series and Sunday’s NASCAR Busch Series, both were action-packed with the hot spot being turn 1 & 11. In the Grand-American race with the prototypes and the Cup cars, traffic was an issue and full of action. This was one of the best Grand-am races that have seen in a long times, crash in turn 11 with a fight between two drivers who are suspended for 1 race and more penilities coming to the frontstraight’s bad calls with going over a whiteline and rough driving to turn 1 with big problems. In the end, #01 Diaz and Pruett for Ganassi took the victory in Mexican style. The GTO.R won again in the Cup car.

For the main event, the Busch Series had there moments, but it was slowed more than 10 times for caution and the added cucan on the front straight was a nightmare too. It was Boris Said leading, but it was the young guns turn with Denny Hamlin picking up his first victory in the Busch Series and in all places, a road course.

A couple of Notes:
Charlotte gets the NASCAR Hall Of Fame, money and locate talks, with almost 90% of all NASCAR teams based in North Carolina, it was a prime spot. Who knows anymore, its NASCAR.

Pinks on SPEED: Any see Pinks last nights on Speed Channel, this was different, instead of running for pink slips on there $35-40k sportbikes, both players but up $5,500 each and purchased a 2006 Suzuki GSXR 1000 for $11,000 and winner takes home that sportbikes and bragging rights over the other one.

What an creative way of putting up cash, both players together purchase a sportbike and winner gets it..like I said creative, but interesting. I just don’t know, is this the first of many shows like this or not?

Monday, March 6, 2006

Building, Publishing and Promoting weblogs and an announcement.

Yesterday I originally posted a contest entry blank in this post for an automotive weblog, but after thinking about it, I have decided to instead post the ins and outs of promotion of a weblog or personal website.

About a year ago this month (March 12, 2005), I was in the same boat as most people, I was trying to start a weblog/website and promote it.

If you are starting a weblog/website:
1. Don’t publish your name, address, phone number, place of work or any personal information that you don’t want the whole world to see.
2. Don’t publish anything on your work place, blogging your work place will get you fired.
3. My advise, theres an old saying, Keep It Simple, But Sweet.
4. Keep your content updated and your subject should be simple.
5. Look at other weblog/websites.
6. Age: Under 17-18, you have other guidelines too. Watch Out!
7. When you start out, try blogging for two weeks without promoting it to find out if you really want to do this.
8. Don’t give up because you get a couple hits a day, blogs are very popular with over I heard 500,000+ and more each day.

9. What really makes a weblog, your original comments on a subject, including giving credit/hat tip to where you got the article or photography, watch out for copyright, everything original is copyrights. (Check out copyright laws for better examples)

10. Don’t steal content, photography or anything else. Photography if used should be used correctly (personal use) and on your own server.
That’s just a couple to get you started.

Promoting your weblog/website:
1. Register with search engines (Get listed, it should be free, it was for me, paid gets you more.) Try a service like addme.com.
2. If yours is a blog, get listed on blog directories, at the bottom of my links page, there are 5+ list of directories that I am listed on.
3. Don’t comment to everyblog just to get your url out there, if you are going to comment on a weblog about that post, make it real and clean, lots of blogs including this one look/read there comments daily and will delete junk.
4. Try a linkexchange with similer sites, somes sites do it and others don’t. (My weblog sometimes does, but I already have a huge list and I really screen everysite now.)Remember some sites don’t take linkexchanges at all, instead they put up a small list.
5. Talk to people, network (Don’t do mass emails, thats junk email and there could be a fine.)
6. The contests is a unique way of doing things and is up to the readers, just the payoff may not be what you are looking for and if you don’t run it right, your site could be outlawed.

Thats somethings too. One more thing, your hits/bottomline, I get anywhere between 30 to 200+ hits a day depending on the posting and day. Others get 400-500 a day, thats big and if you are, you are doing good. One blog I know gets 28,000+ a day, damn.

A Weblog Announcements: I visit this weblog couple times a week or more, and I have added them to my blog list:

Chrysler Weblog, straight from there site: news, reviews, and buzz on the chrysler group’s products. That’s there simple description, here’s a better one, the chryslerweblog.com is an automotive weblog that reports and comments on just about everything on Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep’s line and company including concepts, autoshows, press releases, rumors and more with photography plus what really makes a weblog is there interesting comments on the vehicles and there visitors comments.

Check it out, chryslerweblog.com is worth a look and I like it and I also like the Jeep Hurricane Concept with not just one, but two HEMI engines on board.

See Yeah!

Saturday, March 4, 2006

Northeast Season Opener at the 2006 Racearama

Earlier today I went to what I call the Northeast Season Opener: the 2006 Racearama -N- Tradeshow that moved from W. Springfield, Mass. to Gillette Stadium’s Field House in Foxboro, Mass. (Home to the Superbowl Champions 2001, 2003, 2004 New England Patriots).

The Field House is the size of a football field, but not big enough for this event, I remember the first and second times I went to Racearama in 2001 and 2002 were at one point there were at least two full buildings and in one case 3 full buildings with one building full of collector cars.

Well for what they had there, it still wasn’t bad and I did do some good walking. They have cut everything or do not attract anything but the Busch East Series and Modified Tour teams plus local tracks with some local vendors including selling collectibles. The location is great with free parking.. finally… but still $15 dollar a tickets. Anyway, Here are a three photos (out of 9 photos) taken and copyrighted by me.

Two huge leaders: TED CHRISTOPHER’s Modified in the Modified Tour (left) and MATT KOBYLUCK’s car for the Busch East Series, formally the Busch North Series (right side).

The Busch North Series (now Busch East) 4 time straight Champion (2002-05) ANDY SANTERRE Show Car in the New Hampshire International Speedway’s booth.

The Thrasher Monster Truck that any fan could look at and even got underneath to see the rear engine and inside the cab, this was interesting and that its the first time I really felt small around anything and I am around 6 foot 5 inches tall.

Well, who knows if I will go next year, I will have to wait and see, rightnow I am waiting for July and September for the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series weekends at NHIS.

Thursday, March 2, 2006

Random Thoughts on this Thursday - March 2nd

What an interesting week, I have come across a couple of things and I had some thoughts on a couple of subjects.

Alternative Fuels: I read an article on My Ford Dreams talking about Autoline Detriot discuss on E85 and his opinions on the subject, My Ford Dreams article..So I watched the show and I got to say it was interesting, GM is promoting E85 very strongly and there vehicle prove it. So what are the alternative fuels available.

Using Gasoline is hybrids, that basicly save you money at the pump, but cost more at the dealership, Example:$28,000-30,000 for a 4cyl. Ford Escape Hybrid.

Besides that: Natural gas, for using this in Massachusetts, a friend of the family got a quote on phill and the car from a Honda dealership for his home here in Mass. was $42,000 - everything (Car is $22K on Honda’s website), who knows about Cailfornia. Hydrogen, is currently sold in the US, but both vehicle and fuel is hard to come by, not much is in place yet. E85, in California, the east coast, and Midwest only so far and there are more and more vehicles available now. Diesel, we all know about diesel fuel and its widely available just about everywhere, but there is a lack of vehicles, rightnow its Full-size pickups (Ford, Chevy, GMC, Dodge), plus now the Jeep Liberty, VW’s vehicles, did I miss any.. Bio-Diesel, this one I have not heard much on at all, TrucksTV on Spiketv had a show with Stacy creating a homemade Bio-diesel and after that filled a 2001 Dodge Ram diesel and ran it dry and it had more power than every.

Closing on Alternative Fuels, All the above is available with the proper supply and development in place, so its up to everyone, the president including…one question: Bio-diesel, from what I understand can run in just about any diesel vehicle on the market, but where is it?

Pontiac GTO: I have just read that GM/Pontiac is going to stop production on the GTO later this year until 2008/2009 model year, I don’t have the article link.

2006 Racearama is this weekend in Foxboro, Mass and I will hopefully be going one of the three days with my digital camera, maybe I will have some digital images.

NASCAR: With the Cup and Trucks off this week, the Busch Series is south of the border in Mexico on a roadcourse along with the Rolex Series racing this weekend, I can’t wait to see this race on Sunday..

Status on Racedriven.com: (Keep in mind, this is a hobby for me and I don’t make any money off this site…), I have cut back on posting and have been creating more column like postings and thats what I wanted. I am also considering moving again, as a web designer, I like everything simple and perfect and sense I have yet again out grown out of first blogger, now wordpress.

I am looking at developing a my own complete site from scratch on a server with no software, but here’s my question, I have no RSS feed available & No comment section neither, The question is, do I need either one and what are my opinons?

One other thing, I have been emailed about becoming a contributor on a couple of sites and as everyone may or may not know, I am a contributor on http://autobloggers.blogspot.com/ and like it so far, for rightnow, I am happy with what I have.

See Yeah!