KBM Announces Their Truck Plans For 2013

Kyle Busch

(WOMR file photo)

Kyle Busch Motorsports has made another announcement today regarding its Camping World Truck Series teams.  In the KBM release they announced that there will be two new additions to their stable.

Veteran crew chief Harold Holly has joined the organization and will lead the KBM flagship #18 Toyota Tunda in their attempt to secure the 2013 Camping World Truck championship.

Additionally,  the former Richard Childress Racing driver, Joey Coulter, will pilot their team’s flagship truck, the #18 Tundra, while team owner Kyle Busch will run a partial schedule in the team’s second entry, the KBM #51 Tundra. Busch’s schedule and the rest of the driver lineup that is being formed to compete for the Truck Series owner’s championship will be announced at a later date.

With Holly calling the shots in 2012, Coulter earned his first Truck Series win at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway in August and captured three pole awards. Under the veteran’s guidance, the talented youngster posted eight top-five and 15 top-10 finishes en route to a third-place finish in the final driver’s point standings in his sophomore Truck Series campaign. Coulter’s 749 driver’s points accumulated over the final 20 races this season were more than any other Truck Series driver during that span.

Overall in two Truck Series seasons together at RCR, the duo has accumulated one win, 14 top-five and 28 top-10 finishes over 47 Truck Series starts and one top-10 finish in two Nationwide Series starts. Holly also served as the crew chief for Coulter’s two full-time seasons in the ARCA Racing Series (2009 and 2010), during which they registered one win, two poles, 14 top-five and 23 top-10 finishes across 41 events. A fixture in the Nationwide Series garage during the late 1990’s and 2000’s, Holly led Jeff Green to the 2000 series championship. (KBM)

It appears that KBM is making a serious attempt to regain their previous dominance in that series, with the hiring of Holly and the young gun, Joey Coulter!

It is just 63 days, 5 hours, 45 minutes, and 27 seconds til the drop of the green flag for the Camping World Truck Series opener at Daytona!


Kyle Busch’s 2013 Nationwide Ride Somewhat Confusing?

Kyle Busch NNS

(WOMR file photo)

Following yesterday’s announcement by Kyle Busch Motorsports that they have hired Parker Kligerman to drive full-time in the KBM #77 Toyota Camry next season, there is some confusion as to what ol Kylie is doing in the Nationwide Series in 2013.

Multiple sources tell Frontstretch.com Kyle Busch is prepared to go Nationwide Series racing behind the wheel for 2013 with Joe Gibbs Racing.  That would appear to leave his operation, KBM,  a one-car outfit while trying to return to his winning ways in the sport’s second-tier division.

Busch, with a car number TBD (either #54 or #18) will bring sponsor Monster Energy to the Joe Gibbs Racing Nationwide outfit. Like full-time entries Brian Vickers (#20) and Elliott Sadler (#11), Busch will receive support from JGR engines and chassis in-house while pursuing a limited schedule of races (20-24). Sources claim the move was pushed not by the sponsor but by Gibbs, who wanted Busch to race under his roof, if pursuing Nationwide Series competition in 2013.

However, according to SB Nation’s Jeff Gluck ,”[Kyle Busch Motorsports] spokesman says Kyle Busch will a run partial season in team’s #54 car, in addition to Kligerman’s full season in #77″.

This story appears to be a very fluid situation between Kyle Busch, KBM, and Joe Gibbs Racing!  Will he, Busch, be driving the JGR #18 for the full season, or will there be a joint venture between KBM & JGR, joining efforts, in putting either the  JGR #18, or the KBM #54 on the track for ol Kylie?  It even sounds as if there could be a combination of possibilities for 2013!

Presently, it is not totally clear what the final outcome will be.


Parker Kligerman Joins KBM In The Nationwide Series

Kyle Busch NNS

(WOMR file photo)

I have to admit that there has been little driver swaps, or crew chief swaps, this off-season.  Nevertheless, today Kyle Busch Motorsports has made a somewhat surprising declaration.

Parker Kligerman announced on SiriusXM’s The Morning Drive Tuesday morning that he will drive the # Kyle Busch Motorsports #77 Toyota Camry in the Nationwide Series in 2013.

In fact, KBM has posted a video of this announcement on You Tube!

There has not been, however, any notation as to what sponsorship package that will accompany Kligerman in his new Nationwide ride with KBM.  One would assume that Monster Energy drink will, at least, be an associate sponsor.  That would be logical deduction, since Monster is the primary sponsor of the team car of KBM’s present Nationwide entry, the #54 Monster Energy Drink Toyota.



Gen 6 Cars Are Tested At Charlotte

(photo courtesy JR Motorsports)

The new Sprint Cup race cars, nicknamed Gen 6, have just concluded two days of testing at the Charlotte Motor Speedway, Tuesday and Wednesday.  During Tuesday’s test at Charlotte Motor Speedway drivers were giving a nod of approval to the 2013 race car.

“The cars drive really good,” said Dale Earnhardt Jr., who noted it was the first time he had driven the Gen 6 cars. “I’m really impressed. I like the balance of the car, the down force seems to be relatively good. The car has awesome potential. This car really gives me a lot of sensations that are similar to the old car that we ran 10 years ago. I’m trying not to form too solid of an opinion of the car or get too excited about it because we still have a lot of things we need to learn.”

Earnhardt Jr. called the changes made in the rear camber a big deal.

“I haven’t driven a car today with the old stuff and the new stuff, but there’s a ton of grip in the right rear tire,” Earnhardt Jr. continued. “The body on the car behaves better aerodynamically. The car turns off into the corner good. I don’t miss any of that stuff that we had moving around in the rear of the car last year. I like going into the corner with the car going straight like it’s supposed to, so I’m enjoying this.”

Earnhardt Jr. said the car known as COT, which made its final appearance in 2012, was frustrating to him.

“I had good runs and good races in it, but I never really connected with that car from the very beginning,” Earnhardt Jr. said. “Personally, I didn’t like the car and didn’t appreciate it for what it was.

Sixteen drivers, including Sprint Cup champion “Blazingly Bad” Brad Keselowski, participated in the first day of the two-day test for the Gen 6 car at the 1.5-mile track. Testing will also occur in January at Daytona and Charlotte. Once the 2013 season begins selected race weekends will begin a day early so the teams can test at those tracks. Included in those tracks are Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway. There also will be extra practice at Auto Club Speedway.

Tuesday’s morning test session was led by Richard Childress Racing with Jeff Burton the fastest at 190.833 mph. Kevin Harvick followed with a 190.215-mph lap and then Austin Dillon at 189.934 mph. Keselowski, getting the feel of a Ford for the first time, was 11th quickest at 187.891 mph. Testing continued Tuesday afternoon and was scheduled to resume Wednesday morning. Noticeably missing was Roush Fenway Racing, who did not participate in the test, since it had attended all of the previous ones, extending back to 2011.

NASCAR Vice President of Competition Robin Pemberton said the bulk of the work on the cars was done and “all-in-all the feedback in the garage area had been very positive.”

“I believe when we hand this car off to the teams it will be in the best shape that we’ve ever handed a car off to the teams to start a new season,” said Pemberton, who noted they wanted to have this test session specifically for those teams who were concentrating on the Chase during the 2012 season’s second half or those that didn’t have cars or parts when the other tests occurred.

“Daytona and Talladega are a whole different package – spoiler, springs. We felt like we had good direction from last year for the cars to drive well in the draft and to reduce a lot of that tandem drafting. I think it’s [Daytona and Talladega package] probably better than what we had last year by a pretty fair margin”, Pemberton continued.

It is just 72 day 19 hours and 2 minutes till the green flag drops for the 2012 Dayton 500!


Keselowski’s Source Of Inspiration??

Brad Keselowski

(WOMR file photo)

You got to admit that watching the “Blazingly Bad” Brad Keselowski Show this season has been fun and entertaining.   Fun bit after fun bit. Some bits well thought out and serious, some spontaneous and humorous. Additionally, almost all insightful!

But, for some, there was one little turd in the churn. It surfaced post race at Homestead-Miami Speedway. No, not the gulping of beer out of a garishly large sponsor-emblazoned Miller Lite glass.

It was something he said. Somebody he quoted, actually.

In front of a national television microphone, Keselowski quoted NFL linebacker Ray Lewis, and cited him as a source of inspiration. Ray Lewis????


C’mon man!


I thought to myself, “c’mon man!”

Because, Ray Lewis is exactly what is wrong with organized sports in America these days.  These days in which fans, media, and the players themselves tend to care solely about winning and paychecks, and nothing more.  There is almost never a thought about character, integrity, responsibility and morals!  In my view, the single most important  characteristics for a successful life!

In sports today, if Charles Manson could run a 4.2 40, had a 99 mph fastball that moved in on left-handed batters, or had a 42-inch vertical leap, he would be sprung from the joint in a heartbeat, and in a locker room somewhere by Monday morning, ready for practice!


C’mon man!


Keselowski is only 28 years old. He had just turned 16 years old back in the early winter of 2000; the winter when Richard Lollar, 24, and Jacinth Baker, 21, were stabbed to death during an early morning fight near a strip club in Atlanta, the Gold Club near the Buckhead area.

Charged in the death originally were two men in Lewis’ “entourage”, and Lewis himself. The charges were murder, felony murder and aggravated assault.

In the end, Lewis’ team of high-profile attorneys cut a deal with prosecutors in which Lewis testified against his two limo-riding mates, and the most serious charges were dropped.

In addition, testimony from witnesses which was damaging to Lewis originally, was alleged to have been altered.


C’mon man!


An article in Sports Illustrated dated June 5th, said this about Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard: “It has been a difficult two weeks for Howard, who at times has shown exasperation at witnesses who change their testimony on the stand, and at a judge who sustains most objections made by the defense.”

Lewis would end up pleading guilty to obstruction of justice, ratted out and rolled over on his friends, and ultimately skated off to continue his career – a career that is gushed over by every media play-by-play man and analyst, who either have short memories and/or a sense that being great at putting hits on running backs trumps all moral terpitude!


C’mon man!


Lewis’s two friends were later acquitted in the trial.

Lewis went through the American justice system – a system that inexcusably favors the rich and powerful – and received his punishment; a year’s probation. The star Baltimore linebacker, who was playing under a reported $26 million contract at the time, was fined $250,000 but not suspended by the NFL.  I find this very hard to justify by the NFL!


C’mon man!


He did a crime, he paid his fine, miniscule as it was for the crime committed. I get that. And I get the thing about making mistakes and getting second chances in America. And I do think people can change and “find God” (no matter the convenience of doing so); especially after events like those that can leave two men rapidly bleeding to death on a cold Atlanta sidewalk.

And, no, Lewis is absolutely not a murderer.  I am not inferring that at all!

But you really got to be kidding me!  Can’t we find better people to serve as inspirations? Are there not more people quote-worthy out there than those who leave nightclubs, aka strip clubs,  at 4 a.m. surrounded by people who earlier in the day went to a sporting good store and bought knives – knives that are not the kind which have the little foldout scissors and cork screw, nor butter-spreading type? (A Fulton County medical examiner was quoted as saying the two dead men’s injuries “were well-directed wounds into vital areas.”)

There are better people to draw inspiration from, people like:

Fran Tarkenton: “Maybe you can’t play over your head at all. Maybe it’s just potential you never knew you had.”

Vince Lombardi: “Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, and civilization work.”

Or Willie Mays: “In order to excel, you must be completely dedicated to your chosen sport. You must also be prepared to work hard and be willing to accept constructive criticism. Without a total 100 percent dedication, you won’t be able to do this.”

How about John Wooden: “The most important key to achieving great success is to decide upon your goal and launch, get started, take action, move.”

As I have previously stated, Keselowski has been entertaining at times, and a breath of fresh air at times this season.  However, I truly think that he could have found inspiration from a better, a more respected, and more upright athlete than the Baltimore Ravens linebacker, Ray Lewis!


C’mon man!



Brendan Gaughan To Run Full Season With RCR in The Truck Series

Brendan Gaughan

(WOMR file photo)

Every since Brendan Gaughan’s near championship season in the Truck Series in 2003, driving his family owned race team, he has not really found a home, nor the success enjoyed in that particular season.  Notwithstanding the lack of success since 2003, Gaughan has had a cup of coffee at the Sprint Cup level with Penske Racing, had a mediocre season in the Nationwide Series with Rusty Wallace Racing a couple of years ago, and last year a reasonably decent year running part-time, in both the Nationwide and Truck series with Richard Childress Racing.

Earlier this week Richard Childress Racing announced that Gaughan will return to the Camping World Truck Series full-time driving the #62, Gaughan family sponsored, South Point Hotel and Casino Silverado.  Brendan will reunite with crew chief Shane Wilson to run a full season and compete for the 2013 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship.

Driving for RCR in 2012, Gaughan the Las Vegas native, competed in eight NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races (three top-five and five top-10 finishes), and 10 NASCAR Nationwide Series races. He has competed in six full seasons in the Camping World Truck Series since he made his series debut in 1997. In 195 races, Gaughan has earned eight victories, 67 top-10 finishes and three pole awards.

He is also scheduled to run two races on the 2013 Nationwide Series schedule, at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (March 9) and Road America (June 22).

Gaughan and Wilson first teamed up in 2000, running four Camping World Truck Series races that year and three more in 2001, earning a third-place finish at Mesa Marin Speedway in Bakersfield, Calif. They ran a full season in 2002, winning both races (June 7 and Sept. 13) at Texas Motor Speedway, and finishing 11th in the driver championship point standings.

The next year was a breakout season for the duo, winning six races, earning 18 top-10 finishes and three pole awards on the way to a third-place finish in the driver championship point standings. Together they made the move in 2004 to a full season the Sprint Cup Series, earning one top-five and two other top-10 finishes. The #62 South Point Hotel & Casino team will begin the 2013 Camping World Truck Series season with the owner points earned by RCR’s #22 entry in 2012.(Richard Childress Racing PR)

As usual, the “off-season” is not really a time off!  Those drivers without a ride, as well as all of the race teams, are busy scrambling to line up rides, sponsors packages, and the like, in order to drive through the tunnel at Daytona and compete in just 79 days 4 hours and 8 minutes!


Who Is The Face Of NASCAR?

Jimmie Johnson

(WOMR file photo)

What NASCAR driver, do you think has become the face of NASCAR this year?

Many would think that it has to be Dale Earnhardt, Jr., voted the most popular driver in NASCAR for the last ten (10) years in a row. Many might think that, for 2012, it could have been “Blazingly Bad” Brad Keselowski.  After all, this young gun wrested the 2012 Sprint Cup championship away from the highly favored “Mr. Five-Time”, Jimmie Johnson!  The brothers Busch seemed to garner some of their share of traditional bad press!  But even with their notoriously bad behaviors, they still did not receive the majority of press time this season.

According to research conducted by Joyce Julius & Associates, Inc. — which has monitored every NASCAR race telecast over the last 28 seasons, #48 Jimmie Johnson received the most attention during this year’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series broadcasts. Statistics reflect all live race telecasts and replays of the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season:

Driver # of interviews Interview Time Mentions
Jimmie Johnson 90 1:14:48 7,744
Denny Hamlin 53 0:59:25 5,219
Brad Keselowski 69 1:06:50 5,059
Kyle Busch 21 0:14:24 4,840
Jeff Gordon 58 1:01:54 4,721
Tony Stewart 53 0:53:13 3,854
Dale Earnhardt, Jr. 54 0:54:11 3,422
Greg Biffle 27 0:22:57 3,338
Matt Kenseth 41 0:27:56 3,226
Clint Bowyer 43 0:44:00 3,131
Kasey Kahne 33 0:34:35 3,008
Kevin Harvick 18 0:26:50 2,624
Martin Truex, Jr. 24 0:26:15 2,444
Carl Edwards 35 0:36:08 2,358
Mark Martin 12 0:12:47 1,687

(Joyce Julius)

So there you have it!  “Mr. Five-Time”, Jimmie Johnson, received the most interviews (90), the most interview time, and the most mentions, 7,744, during the 2012 race season!


Tony Stewart In The 2013 Indy 500?

Tony Stewart

(WOMR file photo)

If Tony Stewart want to “do the double” in 2013, race in both the Indy 500 and the Coca Cola 600, last Friday at the NASCAR banquet Roger Penske threw out the offer to put “Smoke” in a Penske Racing Indy Car for that race!

Penske twice Friday night offered Stewart the chance to enter next year’s race and insisted he’s serious about the opportunity. “Where’s Stewart?” Penske asked during his speech accepting the Sprint Cup trophy during NASCAR’s season-ending awards ceremony. “How about doing the double at Indy this year? You available?” The banquet room at Wynn Las Vegas Resort broke out into laughter, but Penske later insisted he was serious. “If he wants to do the double, I’d put him in it,” Penske said. “We’ve talked about it before. I guess I made it official tonight.” Stewart was not immediately available for comment.

Tony Stewart has passed up a chance to race for Roger Penske in the Indianapolis 500.

The three-time NASCAR champion said Wednesday, at the International Motorsports Industry Show, that he wouldn’t attempt to race in both the Indy 500 and NASCAR’s Coca-Cola 600 on the same day.

Penske extended the invitation last week in Las Vegas while accepting the Sprint Cup trophy. Later, when given the chance to shrug it off as a lighthearted moment with Stewart, Penske insisted he was very serious. There has been a push to get Stewart to race in Indianapolis since Penske made the offer, with Indianapolis Motor Speedway starting an online petition for fans to encourage the driver to accept the ride.

The Indiana native twice ran both the Indy 500 and Coca-Cola 600 on the same day. In 1999, he was ninth at Indy and fourth at Charlotte, and in 2001, he was sixth at Indy and third at Charlotte.

It would appear that the day of “doing the double”, by either a NASCAR or IndyCar driver, is a thing of the past, much to the chagrin of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, IndyCar, and NASCAR!

If that were to happen again, however, it would be an advertising dream to both sanctioning bodies!

Do you think that there is any driver left, in either IndyCar or NASCAR, that would have a shot at “doing the double” in the future?


The Third Annual Turkey Classic At Cocopah Speedway


(WOMR file photo)

Thanksgiving weekend saw the third annual Cocopah Speedway Turkey Classic Late Model races in Yuma, AZ.  This year there were cars from as far away as Medford, OR, Tucson, AZ, the Phoenix area, as well as, San Diego.  For the first night, Friday, there were 32 Late Models on the program, and 36 Late Models for the finale on Saturday night.

This year the format was changed to add some zest into the event. There were two sets of heat races for the late models.  The first round of heat races were slated with the fastest qualifier on the pole for each of the  heat races.  In the second round, those same participants in each of the heat race were inverted, the fastest qualifiers to the back of the pack, and raced again.  Then all the points for each of the race,s and points for qualifying position, were added up to determine your starting spot in the A Main.

The Friday night 25 lap feature event was very exciting with Brett Simala, Yuma, AZ, Dana Boatwright Tucson, AZ, Brian Johnson, Central Point, OR, Daniel Sticker, Tucson, AZ, and the eventual winner Gary Dutton, Bakersfield, CA, dueling wheel-to-wheel during the last 10 laps.  Dutton was the master of the “high and not afraid to die” line of racing, making all of his moves right up against the fence, including the winning pass!

Check out the Friday night results of both the Late Model action, as well as the Factory Stock division.

Saturday night was even more exciting at Cocopah Speedway!

Three of Friday nights top five finishers were in the hunt for the big money, $3,000.00 to win the 35 lap A Main Saturday.  The second night’s A Main leading characters fighting for a little “gold on the ceiling” were, Daniel Stricker, Tucson, AZ, Chris Smith, Brian Johnson, Central Point, OR, Mike Corning, San Diego, Ca, and with his broom in hand to sweep the event, Gary Dutton, Bakersfield, CA.

Once again, Dutton drove right up to the fence, mastering the high line on Saturday night!  He raced where no driver ventured throughout the 35 laps!

Check out the results from the Saturday night event.

For those of you in Southwestern Arizona, a trip to Yuma Arizona for a night at the Cocopah Speedway is well worth your time.  The priced is right, and the racing is fantastic!


Elliott Sadler Moves To Joe Gibbs Racing

Brian Scott

(WOMR file photo)

It was announced, and made official, after the Ford Championship Weekend that Elliott Sadler is now employed by Joe Gibbs Racing.  The rumor was that Sadler was going to fun a full-time Nationwide schedule and possibly a partial Sprint Cup schedule.  However, JGR president, J. D. Gibbs, laid the partial Sprint Cup schedule to rest, stating that the partial Sprint Cup ride was not in the plans, presently.

OneMain Financial announced a partnership with Joe Gibbs Racing to be the primary sponsor of the JGR #11 OneMain Financial Toyota driven by Elliott Sadler in the Nationwide Series in 2013. OneMain Financial will also have associate sponsorship on two additional Joe Gibbs Racing Nationwide Series entries.

The 2013 season will mark OneMain Financial’s 10th season as a sponsor in NASCAR and they remain committed to the sport and the connections it enables them to make with their customers and employees. Over the last two seasons, the OneMain Racing program with driver Elliott Sadler has recorded 4 wins, 9 poles, 27 top-fives and 48 top-10 finishes in 68 starts.

Additionally, Gibbs said Kyle Busch will return to a part-time Nationwide Schedule for JGR after spending this season splitting a ride in his own organization with his brother Kurt. Kyle Busch reduced his time in the Truck and Nationwide Series this past season in an effort to focus on Cup. He finished 13th in points and missed the Chase.

“With Kyle, not filling his time in Nationwide, racing, that probably caused him more distractions than doing it,” Gibbs said prior to the Nationwide Series banquet, in which JGR won the owner’s title with the #18. “Kyle, he’s kind of motivated being around the sport. He races Late Models and is a great ambassador for NASCAR.”

Gibbs said Busch would split a Nationwide car with several young drivers such as Drew Herring and Darrell Wallace Jr. He said plans also are being put in place for Wallace to drive a Truck Series team for Kyle Busch Motorsports.

Gibbs said he was unsure which numbers would be assigned to which drivers at this point.

Still another piece of the 2013 NASCAR Nationwide puzzle falls into place!