Katie's Komments: 17th Edition
Welcome to the latest edition of Katie’s Komments! There is a lot to discuss this week!
Kurt Busch to Stewart-Haas Racing: Well, its official, Kurt Busch will be the 4th driver at SHR starting in 2014. He will be joining recently injured driver Tony Stewart, Rookie Danica Patrick and new-to-SHR driver Kevin Harvick which could lead to some interesting happenings in 2014. With four big personalities and very popular drivers under one roof, Busch will definitely fit right in at SHR. The organization receives their equipment, chassis and engines to be exact, from Hendrick Motorsports, which is some of the strongest in the field. Busch has really turned his life and his attitude around this season. Driving for a single-car team has helped him to realize just how talented he is and joining the ranks at SHR will definitely build on that. Look for big things to come from the eldest Busch Brother in the coming seasons because he is just starting to heat back up.
AJ Allmendinger in at JTG Daugherty Racing: After replacing Bobby Labonte for a handful of races this season, Allmendinger has been named the full time driver No.47 car for 2014. After a rough season in 2012, Allmendinger has proven that he deserves a full-time Sprint Cup ride, although a ride like the Penske No.22 is still far away. 2013 has been a heck of a ride for Allmendinger despite his previous troubles. Roger Penske stood behind him and put him in an IndyCar in preparation for his first Indy 500. His impressive seventh place finish in the historic race started him back on the right path. Allmendinger’s continued success proves that one bad choice doesn’t have to ruin a great career.
Kyle Larson to Cup in 2014: When it was announced a few weeks ago that Juan Pablo Montoya would not be returning to Earnhardt Ganassi Racing, it was all but confirmed that Nationwide Series Rookie Kyle Larson would be replacing him behind the wheel. Larson, at just 21 years old, is a phenomenon behind the wheel but moving him up to the Sprint Cup Series too soon would be a disaster to his career. Personally, I think Larson needs one more season in Nationwide to hone in his skills before jumping in with the big boys. With no Sprint Cup Series starts, there is no way to judge how Larson will do next season. I guess we will just have to wait and see!
There was a lot that went on in the Sprint Cup Series this last week! That will do it for this edition of Katie’s Komments. I hope you enjoyed and don’t forget to leave your own!
Katie's Komments: 16th Edition
Welcome to the 16th edition of Katie’s Komment’s, a place to find the latest NASCAR news and my opinion on it! All comments are my views only but feel free to leave your own!
Road Course Racing: I was checking out the Twitterverse last weekend, like I do every race weekend, to see what people were talking about and what I found shocked me. NASCAR fans, in general, seem to hate road course racing. I follow a little over 1,300 people on Twitter and a majority of those are race fans of some sort. As I was scrolling through my timeline, I kept coming across tweets of disgust towards the right turns and winding roads that make up the road course races. Personally, I love road course races. The twists and turns leave drivers with new challenges with every passing moment and road course races give drivers like Juan Pablo Montoya and Marcos Ambrose a chance to shine. The finish last season at Watkins Glen was one of the most exciting finishes I have seen in NASCAR in years and this year, although it wasn’t quite as dramatic, was just as good. With only two road course races a year, three if you are the Nationwide Series, fans don’t get to see many right turns or the unique drivers, like Boris Said and Ron Fellows, that the road courses bring out. I am one of those people who would love to see a road course race in the Chase but having two a season is good enough for me. There is one last course on the schedule as the Nationwide Series takes to Mid-Ohio for the first time in years. Will I be tuning in? You bet!
Vickers In at MWR: It was announced this week that Brian Vickers will pilot the No.55 Aaron’s Dream Machine for Michael Waltrip Racing full time next season. The deal, which includes two full seasons with MWR, puts Vickers behind the wheel of the No.55 with full sponsorship from Aaron’s. With sponsorship hard to come by, having all 36 races sponsored by one company for two full seasons is a race team’s dream come true. Now, this announcement wasn’t a shocking one. It had been said for quite some time that Vickers would be piloting the car full time in 2014. Vickers has had quite the ride since 2011, even filling in this season for Denny Hamlin after his back injury. It will be nice to see Vickers in a full time ride next season and I wouldn’t count him out for a run at the championship in the coming years.
Juan Pablo Montoya OUT at Earnhardt Ganassi Racing: Another big announcement was involved Columbian-born racer Juan Pablo Montoya. Montoya, who has piloted the No.42 Target Chevrolet for Earnhardt Ganassi Racing since 2007, will be a free agent at the end of 2013. With 2 wins in 239 Sprint Cup Series starts, the last coming in 2010, Montoya hasn’t lived up to EGR standards. With only two appearances in the top-20 in points, including one Chase appearance in 2009, Montoya’s average finish in the standings is 18th. Currently, he sits 22nd in points with 3 top-5 finishes including a second place finish this season at Dover. Montoya’s future in NASCAR is uncertain and whether or not he has been in talks with another race team is still a question. Will someone else pick up Montoya or are his days in NASCAR numbered. That has yet to be determined but some Montoya fans and analysts, including myself, think that a move to the Grand-Am Series might be a possibility.
That will be it for the 16th edition of Katie’s Komments and remember, if you don’t like mine, feel free to leave your own!
Katie's Komments: 15th Edition
Welcome to the 15th edition of Katie’s Komment’s, a place to find the latest NASCAR news and my opinion on it! All comments are my views only but feel free to leave your own!
Tony Stewart: When news broke yesterday that three-time Sprint Cup Series Champion Tony Stewart had severely broken his leg and would be out of the No.14 Chevy for the foreseeable future, my heart broke. Tony Stewart is one of those racers who has to be in the car and in a race multiple times a week. And when I say has to, I mean that literally because his livelihood feeds on that competition and adrenalin. Stewart races is multiple Sprint Car races a week at dirt tracks all over the country, bringing in fans and keeping the love of dirt track racing alive. Because Stewart, and other NASCAR drivers like Kyle Larson, continue to race on dirt despite having a NASCAR ride, it brings in casual race fans into a new, albeit the original, form of racing. Taking a guy like Stewart and telling he is no longer able to drive his Sprint Car would be like telling Taylor Swift she could no longer sing bad breakup songs. Get well soon T-Stew!
Dirt Racing Unsafe: The big debate as of late has been the level of danger that comes with racing on dirt. There seems to have been an unusual amount of injuries this season that have come from NASCAR drivers going back to their roots. This is all coming on the heels of NASCAR announcing that they were hosting their first dirt track race in more than 40 years when the Camping World Truck Series took to Eldora just a few weeks ago. The fact is, dirt track racing isn’t necessarily as safe as NASCAR’s top series may be but that is because these tracks don’t have safer barriers. They aren’t required to have safer barriers. The big debate is that they should be required but unfortunately, they often can’t afford them. The odd thing is, the wrecks this season than have been because drivers have hit the wall. They have all be on-track incidents. The latest, involving Tony Stewart, is one example. Stewart was passing a lap car when he seemed to clip the tire and went tumbling through the air. Dirt track racing is safer then ever before but because of the added coverage this season, it seems like serious injuries and unfortunately death, are at an all-time high.
Hendrick Dominance: This past weekend at Pocono, it was a Hendrick showdown. Pole sitter Jimmie Johnson, who won the June race, led a large number of laps and looked to be on his way to a Pocono sweep when he blew a tire and hit the wall. After extensive repairs to the No.48, Johnson rallied back to finish 13th. Johnson was the lowest finishing Hendrick driver on Sunday. The other three Hendrick Motorsports drivers made up three of the top five finishers on Sunday. Dale Earnhardt Jr walked away with a nice fifth place finish. Jeff Gordon, who looked like he was going to get his seventh win at the Tricky Triangle when he took the lead with five to go, finished second. Kasey Kahne, for the second time this season, took his No.5 Chevy to Victory Lane after a late race caution allowed him to retake the lead from teammate Gordon. Hendrick Motorsports is stronger than ever this season with Jimmie Johnson leading the point’s standings by 77 points, more than one full race. Can anyone stop them?
That will be it for the 15th edition of Katie’s Komments and remember, if you don’t like mine, feel free to leave your own!