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Backstretch Blog

  • The Backstretch Blog: Returning to lower series is all about a return to NASCAR drivers' roots

    Racing, like any other sport is all about climbing the ladder.        

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  • Iowa trip provides learning experience for Wichita State race team

    Talk about fast learners. Members of the Wichita State engineering program are getting a lesson at more than 200 miles per hour.

  • Race Day: Camping World RV Sales 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway

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    This weekend NASCAR totally shifts gears, from the sprawling high banks for Daytona, to the one mile flat track at New Hampshire. It’s a big swing and always presents a challenge for drivers.

  • The Backstretch Blog: Bowyer on the Backstretch

    Somewhere in Clint Bowyer's room of hunting trophies hangs something you may not expect to see. It’s a lobster. Yes a lobster. Bowyer got the prize for the winning race at New Hampshire in 2010 and to him is seemed like as good a place as any to display his prize.

  • The Backstretch Blog: Union Specific?

    So what exactly is this ‘Race Team Alliance?’ Is it an owners union? It sure seems like a Union, but in a phone interview with the Associated Press, Chairman Rob Kauffman says, not so fast.

  • Race Day, Take 2: Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway

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    Well just take everything you knew about the Coke Zero 400 and throw it out the window. As if Daytona wasn’t enough of a wild card, the track will now be hotter and greener. Drivers say weather effects DIS more than ever now.

  • Race Day: Coke Zero 400 at the Daytona International Speedway

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    Are racetracks more dramatic the second time around? We are about to find out as the Sprint Cup series starts its second time though its tracks with a return visit to the Daytona International Speedway.

  • The Backstretch Blog: Bowyer on the Backstretch

    After a tough run at Kentucky, Kansas native Clint Bowyer gets to return to a kind of track that suits his style of racing, the restrictor plate superspeedway at Daytona. Though Bowyer has traditionally been better at Talladega than in Florida, there are some things he can use from the Alabama track this weekend, especially when it comes to qualifying.

  • The Backstretch Blog: Mid-season report card

    Time to reset the clock and look forward to the second half of the season as NASCAR makes its first return trip of the season to a track. The second time around the race at the Daytona International speedway is a night race. Seems like a good time to look back and evaluate how my picks to make the chase this season are faring so far.

  • Race Day: Quaker State 400 at the Kentucky Speedway

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    There is nothing like Saturday night racing under the lights. And if your track only gets one race a year as Saturday night showdown is a pretty good one to have.  This week’s race in Kentucky is the only stop of the year for NASCAR’s top series in the Bluegrass State. And drivers say the words for the night are ‘rough’ and ‘bumpy.’

  • The Backstretch Blog: Bowyer on the Backstretch

    There is good news and bad news for Kansas native Clint Bowyer. The good news is he is finally running at the constancy level most people expect him to and has moved into the top 16 in the Chase for Championship standings. The bad news is, he is still chasing that win that would lock him into the chase.

  • The Backstretch Blog: Is Jack in the future?

    Just where will Carl Edwards be driving in 2015? Most people believe it will not be for Roush-Fenway racing and reports over the weekend out of Sonoma by the Associated Press and FOX Sports saying even if Edwards has decided where he’s going next season, he can’t make that announcement until September, per his contract.

  • Race Day: Toyota/Save-Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway

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    Time to throw a few right turns in with the lefts as NASCAR makes one of two stops on the schedule at a road course. People often throw this week’s race at Sonoma and the race in a few weeks at Watkins Glen in the same category. But just as all ovals are not created a like, neither are all road courses.

  • The Backstretch Blog: Bowyer on the Backstretch

    This week marks the 65th anniversary of the first ever Sprint Cup series race. On June 19, 1949 Jim Roper of Halstread, Kansas won that race in the then “Strictly Stock” division. Wouldn’t it be nice if on that anniversary if another Kansas racer won?  NASCAR is at Sonama this weekend, a track that has developed in a good one for Emporia native Clint Bowyer. He’s finished in the top five each of…

  • The Backstretch Blog: You Got Served

    NASCAR fans and media fall for it every single season.  Jimmie Johnson has a run where he is isn’t winning as much as we think he should, the ‘Jimmie has lost it’ or ‘the field has finally caught up with Johnson’ stories start. We fall for it every single time. And then the 48 team does something like win three of four races, including Sunday in Michigan, serving it up, just to remind everyone…


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    Keselowski gets 3rd win of the season at New Hampshire; Bowyer is 6th

    It didn’t matter where Brad Keselowski was on a restart, he found his way to the front. The 2 car lead 138 of the 305 laps run, which included four laps of overtime thanks to a green-white-checkered finish.

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  • Kyle Busch wins the pole at New Hampshire pole; Bowyer to start 8th

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    For the second time this season Kyle Busch will have the best seat in the house to start a NASCAR race. After a record setting lap of 138.130 mph, Busch will lead the field to the green from the pole at Sunday’s race in New Hampshire.

  • Kurt Busch penalized for failed Daytona inspection

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    Kurt Busch has been penalized 10 points after the 41 team failed post-race inspection Sunday at Daytona. Owner Gene Haas also lost 10 owners points and crew chief Daniel Knost was fined $10,000.

  • NASCAR's biggest teams form unprecedented alliance

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    Monday morning the nine biggest teams in NASCAR announced they have formed the ‘Race Team Alliance.” According to release from Michael Waltrip Racing Co-Owner Rob Kauffman who is chair of the alliance will allow the teams to work together to promote the sport and its drivers.

  • Almirola wins rain-delayed, rain shortened race at Daytona; Bowyer is 9th

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    Thirty years ago Richard Petty won his final NASCAR race at the Daytona International Speedway summer race. On Sunday, Aric Almirola put the 43 back in victory lane at that same track. It was the first win for the 43 since 1999. It is also his first career Sprint Cup Series victory.

  • Coke Zero 400 postponed by rain

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    Rain continues to disrupt the weekend festivities at the Daytona International Speedway. After cutting the qualifying for both the Sprint Cup and Nationwide series races short on Friday, Mother Nature didn’t even let cars get on the track on Saturday.

  • Does NASCAR worry about attendance dropping? "Of course we do."

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    NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France knows ratings are down and he knows attendance is down.  He admits it’s something they worry about.

  • Gilliland on pole at Daytona after rain shortened qualifying; Bowyer starts 34th

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    If you looked at Friday’s qualifying results, you might think you have the lineup upside down at first glance, but that’s restrictor plate racing. A host of different names populate the top of the lineup, oh and a six-time champion.

  • Keselowski wins at Kentucky; Bowyer is 23rd

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    There is a saying in racing when a car dominates a race that it ‘stunk up the show.’ Saturday night under the lights at the Kentucky Speedway Brad Keselowski ‘stunk up the show.’

  • Keselowski wins the pole at Kentucky; Bowyer will start 11th

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    Maybe the head start he got on the track made the difference. After winning the Nationwide pole on Friday at Kentucky Speedway, he jumped in his Sprint Cup series car and grabbed his second pole of the day with a track-record speed of 188.791.

  • Edwards wins Somoma; Bowyer rebounds from late spin to finish 10th

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    Carl Edwards is not a name that comes to mind for most when you talk about the road course at Sonoma. But the fact of the matter is the 99 team has been pretty good there. Edwards finished third at Sonoma two of the past three seasons. He finally finished the deal on Sunday, passing road course specialist Marcos Ambrose late and then holding off the all-time winningest NASCAR driver on the road…

  • McMurray puts Cessna sponsored car on Sonoma Pole; Bowyer will start 25th

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    It’s clear there is something about qualifying at Sonoma that brings out the best out of Jamie McMurray.  On Saturday the Joplin, Missouri native won his second straight pole at the California road course and the first pole under the new knockout qualifying format, with a fast lap of 96.350 mph.

  • Johnson finally wins Michigan; Bowyer is 10th

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    Winless streak? What winless streak? The Michigan International Speedway was one five tracks Jimmie Johnson had not collected at least won at. It was, before he was able to hold off pole sitter Kevin Harvick and pick up the win for the first time in 25 tries.

  • Harvick wins the pole at Michigan; Bowyer will start 15th

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    Under the old system of qualifying, Kevin Harvick would have never been considered a ‘great qualifier,’ he had just six poles in 13 NASCAR seasons. But this new knockout style of qualifying seems to suit Harvick, who won his third pole of the season on Friday and will lead the field to the green for Sunday’s race at Michigan.

  • Earnhardt, Jr. wins Pocono; Bowyer is 11th

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    Pocono Raceway seems to be to the liking of the Hendrick Motorsports team. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. went to victory lane on Sunday at the triangle shaped track, making him the fourth straight HMS car to win there.

  • Four-time Pocono winner Hamlin wins the pole for Sunday, Bowyer will start 19th

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    Denny Hamlin knows how to get around the Pocono Raceway. The number 11 has four wins at the tricky triangle with him as the pilot, including a sweep of the races his rookie season. So it probably should serve as no surprise that he won the pole for this weekend’s race with a record lap of 181.415 mph.

  • Johnson wins, Bowyer 4th as the Monster Mile bites many competitors

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    It appears reports of Jimmie Johnson’s demise have been extremely exaggerated. After going the first 11 races of the season without a victory, Johnson dominated in Dover and cruised to his second straight win in 2014.

  • Johnson gets first win of 2014 at Charlotte; Bowyer is 17th

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    Now everyone can stop talking about it. This season marked the latest in a NASCAR season that six-time champion Jimmie Johnson had gone without a win since his sophomore season in 2003, but he ended that streak with a win from the pole at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Sunday.

  • Johnson grabs Coke 600 pole; Bowyer will start 5th

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    It looks like Charlotte Motor Speedway would be the cure for whatever is ailing five-time Sprint Cup series champion Jimmie Johnson.  Johnson, who is on the pole for Sunday night’s race, hasn’t gone this late into the season since 2003, his sophomore season. That year he finally broke through at Charlotte.

  • NASCAR announces Hall of Fame Class of 2015

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    NASCAR pioneers headline the 2015 Class of Inductees. After classes that included more recent drivers like Rusty Wallace and Dale Jarrett, four of the five drivers in the Class of 2015 raced in the 1950’s and 60’s.

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