Series off-week news 2010-06-28

Turner Motorsports Owner Likes What He Sees In NCWTS Steve Turner has found a home in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. One of several newcomers to the series in 2010, Turner has quickly acclimated to the mammoth jump from owning dirt...

Turner Motorsports Owner Likes What He Sees In NCWTS

Steve Turner has found a home in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

One of several newcomers to the series in 2010, Turner has quickly acclimated to the mammoth jump from owning dirt late models in Texas to being part of one of NASCAR's most competitive series.

"While coming into the series with two full-time trucks was quite the undertaking, we've had a lot of good people and partners supporting us, which is helpful," said Turner, a native Texan, who fielded dirt late models and Bandolero cars for his daughters before testing the NASCAR Camping World Truck waters in 2009. "We have received a tremendous amount of help from other teams like Kevin Harvick Inc., which has made it easier for us to enter the sport."

Turner Motorsports has adapted quickly to NASCAR. The pinnacle in the season's first nine races was a double top-five finish at Dover International Speedway where James Buescher (No. 31 Wolf Pack Rentals Chevrolet) was second and Ricky Carmichael (No. 4 Monster Energy Chevrolet) fourth.

Carmichael stands ninth in NASCAR Camping World Truck points while Buescher, who didn't join the team as a full-time driver until May, is 18th despite missing three races.

"Investing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series was something that fit with where Turner Motorsports wants to establish itself now and in the future," said Turner. "I've had my hands in racing for a major part of my life and I enjoy the competition and being able to help develop young drivers who are early in their careers, like James and Ricky."

Turner also likes the series' 25-race schedule. "Since we don't race every week, financially it is easier compared to Nationwide and Sprint Cup, but managing where you spend your money is a big part of what you have to do," he said.

But Turner just plain enjoys the series from a competitive standpoint.

"A lot of the fans have said that they enjoy watching the trucks race because the drivers race every lap like it is the last," he said. "That is something that we can use when trying to sell sponsorships. Our series is healthy and I think you can see that by the truck counts that we have had so far this season. The economy is starting to improve and businesses will need to showcase their products, opening a lot of doors for sponsorship opportunities."

Bottom line, though, Turner wants to be seen as a winner.

"My hope is that we can prove that new teams can come into the series and run up front," he said.

So far, Turner Motorsports is doing that.

Skinner Headed To England For Goodwood Festival of Speed

Mike Skinner (No. 5 International Truck/Monaco RV's Toyota) will compete in the Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend for the second time. The veteran series driver will compete in West Sussex, England against numerous drivers from nationally-recognized motorsports ranks. He is only one of two NASCAR drivers that will represent the sport on the 1.16-mile course.

Skinner, who has won for five consecutive seasons, has five top-10 finishes this season and is currently in sixth position in the series standings.

Hornaday Jr. Only NCWTS Driver To Ever Be Nominated For An ESPY

Defending series champion Ron Hornaday Jr. (No. 33 KHI Chevrolet) received a special call last week notifying him he was a 2010 ESPY nominee for Best Driver -- an honor no other NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competitor has received. Hornaday Jr. joins NASCAR Sprint Cup regulars Kyle Busch and Jimmie Johnson along with IndyCar Series driver Dario Franchitti and NHRA legend Tony Schumacher in the prestigious category.

"I was really shocked when I got the call," said Hornaday, who won his fourth series championship last season. "This is a pretty cool thing. I am really honored to be nominated with drivers like Jimmie (Johnson), Kyle (Busch), Dario Franchitti and Tony Schumacher. All of those guys are great drivers and I am honored that they would even consider me."

Ricky Carmichael (No. 4 Monster Energy Chevrolet), former teammate to Hornaday Jr. and three-time ESPY nominee in the Best Action Sport Athlete category, was ecstatic when he heard the news.

"What a great honor for Ron (Hornaday Jr.)," said Carmichael. "He has set the bar so high for all of us in the sport and deserves to be recognized for his great accomplishments, especially after last season. I had the opportunity to attend the ESPYs on three different occasions and it is still one of the highlights of my motocross career.

Series regular David Starr (No. 81 Zachary Toyota) echoed Carmichael on his congratulations for the series champ.

"That is really exciting for Ron (Hornaday Jr.)," said Starr, who currently sits eighth in the series standings. "He is one of the top competitors each week for our team and one of the top racers in our sport. With all the various motorsports and drivers that could have been selected, it's great for our series that a NCWTS driver is included."

Hornaday Jr. has 45 wins and 25 poles on his resume in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and leads the series for most championships, with four.

NCWTS Etc.

Cobb To Make NNS Debut This Weekend Jennifer Jo Cobb (No. 10 DrivenMale.com Ford) will make her NASCAR Nationwide Series debut this weekend at Daytona in the No. 27 Baker Curb Racing entry. She will become the first female to compete in the NASCAR Nationwide Series new car.

"This is a huge step for our team," said Cobb.

"I am thrilled to be partnering with Baker Curb Racing. Their experience will be an asset to our team. We look forward to working with them as we continue to grow and develop as an organization."

KHI: Giving Back To Those Less Fortuante

Kevin Harvick Inc. employees are spending their open week on the schedule giving back to those in need at the Victory Junction Gang Camp. The team will spend the day boating and fishing with Spina Bifida stricken children. The No. 2 KHI pit crew will perform live pit stops for the campers.

Team owner Kevin Harvick encourages his teams to give back. "DeLana and I have been a part of Victory Junction before there were any buildings or campers. We continue to be inspired be able to give back, not only through donations, but to be able to spend time with the campers as well.

Wallace In No. 15 BBM Entry At Iowa

Nationwide Series regular Steven Wallace (No. 15 Billy Ballew Motorsports Toyota), will make his third truck series start at Iowa Speedway in two weeks for Billy Ballew Motorsports. He finished fourth in March at Atlanta Motor Speedway in a BBM entry.

Wallace's father, racing legend Rusty Wallace, was the chief designer of Iowa Speedway during its conception.

Carmichael Back To The Booth

Ricky Carmichael (No. 4 Chevrolet) heads back to his motocross roots this weekend at Red Bud MX in Buchanan, Mich. He will be on site to help consult Team Suzuki rider Ryan Dungey before stepping into the TV booth to call the live broadcast of the race for NBC.

Almirola Still On Standby For Johnson

NCWTS Michigan winner Aric Almirola (No. 51 Graceway Pharmaceuticals Toyota) continues to standby for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series regular Jimmie Johnson, whose wife is about to give birth to their first child. Almirola practiced the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet during happy hour at New Hampshire this past weeked. Almirola will make the trip with the team to Daytona this weekend.

Up Next: Iowa Speedway

Last year's running of the Lucas Oil 200 marked the series first visit to Iowa Speedway. Mike Skinner was victorious in the 200 lap event.

From the outside looking in not much as changed for the upcoming race on July 11 --the title sponsor and the number of laps completed all stayed the same.

However, the summer heat could be a deciding factor in the outcome of the event. The 2009 series stop at Iowa was in September, but this year's stop will happen in the middle of July.

Fast Facts

Next Race: Lucas Oil 200 presented by SPEED by Mediacom
The Place: Iowa Speedway (.875-mile oval)

The Date: Sunday, July 11
The Time: 2 p.m. ET

Race Distance: 200 laps /175 miles

TV: SPEED, 12:30 p.m. ET
Radio: MRN, SIRIUS NASCAR Radio (Listen locally on KXIA-AM 101.1)

2009 Polesitter: Mike Skinner
2009 Winner: Mike Skinner

Schedule:
Saturday -- Practice, 11:45 a.m. -- 12:50 p.m. and 2-3:30 p.m. Qualifying - 6:30 p.m.

-source: nascar

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Rusty Wallace , Mike Skinner , Tony Schumacher , David Starr , Kevin Harvick , Dario Franchitti , Ron Hornaday Jr. , Jimmie Johnson , Ricky Carmichael , Aric Almirola , Jennifer Jo Cobb , James Buescher , Kyle Busch , Ryan Dungey
Teams Hendrick Motorsports , Turner Motorsport