Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Fan Insight: Tony Stewart upset over finishing 2nd despite being tied for Cup Series Points lead with Kurt Busch.

Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images

Welcome readers, this past weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, both the NASCAR Nationwide Series on Saturday and the Cup Series on Sunday were in action, and boy did both series put on an interesting show.

On Saturday, the Nationwide Series was in action with plenty of on-track action that was fast and filled with cautions due to some aggressive driving. But the race would come down to fuel economy and who had to pit and who didn’t with Mark Martin squeezing out a victory.

But on Sunday in the Kobalt Tools 500, Carl Edward’s crew chief made the right call on pit road calling for two tires and fuel to come out in front of second place Tony Stewart and hold on for his first victory of 2011.
 
Notebook:

1. Josh Wise takes flight early on in Nationwide race: During the early laps of the Nationwide Series race on Saturday, Josh Wise would get loss, turn towards the infield, run through the grass and in doing so, launches into the air with all four tires leaving the ground before landing hard back in the grass. What a sight to see, may word Wise goes airborn. It’s something that you normally don’t see in NASCAR racing and ill make the highlight reel for sure. (Photo above)

2. Tony Stewart upset over finishing 2nd? On Sunday after the race, Tony Stewart said on pit road that they through the victory away and that second place sucks. While I questioned why Tony Stewart was so upset, I do give him credit for at least being fully honest. I would say that Stewart’s crew will have to explain why he lost the race.

I believe that while Tony Stewart did have a strong car on the second to final run on two tires that showed the other teams that a two-tire stop could mean speed and possibly victory. And since Tony Stewart had already taken two-tires for track position on that previous stop, they couldn’t take two-tires again, so the team was forced to change four tires instead. Meanwhile the #99 would change two-tires and have enough of a lead to hold on for the victory. Simply put on Stewart, he lost because of pit strategy and the air hose penalty on pit road.

But Stewart is now tied for the points lead with Kurt Busch, so that is something to be happy with and a good strong performance on Sunday.

3. Mark Martin wins Nationwide Series race: On Saturday, it was cool to once again see Mark Martin capture another Nationwide victory, his 49th in the (now) Nationwide Series. But the victory also meant that Kyle Busch wouldn’t win and that’s cool too.

4. Dale Earnhardt Jr. climbing to 10th in the points? Yes readers, Dale Jr. and the entire #88 team is trying to turn things around in 2011 and with the exception of being caught up in a wreck at Daytona, Dale Jr. managed to earn back-to-back top 10ths (Phoenix and Las Vegas) which has propelled him to 10th in the points, tied with Mark Martin.

5. Danica Patrick gets best career finish at Las Vegas: Raising NASCAR star Danica Patrick continues to improve in the NASCAR Nationwide Series in her second part-time season by gambling on fuel, staying out of trouble and making some good passes to come away with her best career finish in NASCAR, a fourth place finish.

6. Fueling issues gets to several teams in Cup Series especially: On Sunday especially, several NASCAR teams even after two full races are still having issues trying to fuel these car with his new self-venting fuel can. The new fuel can is a welcome change, but its does no good for the sport if the new idea isn’t working correctly and that was bluntly seen on the #16-Greg Biffle Ford. Biffle had a good car all day long, but refueling issues just killed his chances on Sunday at least getting a top 10 finish.

I don’t know what the problem is, but I hope the #16 team figures this one out and firing the gas man isn’t the answer.

Well readers, this ones a wrap from Las Vegas, but the momentum will be lost as the Cup Series and Nationwide Series have there first off weekend after three races. What a killer there. However, now all eyes are on the Camping World Truck Series this week as on Saturday, they would take on Darlington. The lady in black and the track too tough to tame should be a good one for sure.