Three of the top 10 starters in Sunday's Winston Cup MBNA 400 will drop to the rear of the field at the start after stumbling in Saturday morning's happy-hour practice. Polesitter Matt Kenseth had underhood troubles, swapped motors and will start...
Three of the top 10 starters in Sunday's Winston Cup MBNA 400 will drop to the rear of the field at the start after stumbling in Saturday morning's happy-hour practice. Polesitter Matt Kenseth had underhood troubles, swapped motors and will start from the rear for breaching NASCAR's one-event, one-engine edict.
Third-starting Jerry Nadeau and fifth-starting Kurt Busch will join Kenseth at the rear Nadeau crashed in happy hour, Busch crashed on his second qualifying lap.
"I'm more disappointed for these guys (on the Valvoline Pontiac crew) because they're the ones who have to do all the extra work in setting up the backup car all over. All I have to do is drive it," Nadeau said.
Danny "Chocolate" Myers, the brawny gasman for Richard Childress Racing, will miss the MBNA 400 after he stumbled while getting out of his personal truck at his North Carolina home, injuring his left elbow and possibly his left wrist. There were no apparent fractures. Larry Hartle will do the refueling for Robby Gordon today.
Fox Sports pit road reporter Dr. Dick Berggren was absent for Saturday's MBNA Platinum 200 Busch Series race. Tony Stewart lent his personal jet to Berggren so he could fly to Knoxville, Iowa and be present for his Saturday-night induction into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame. Berggren founded Open Wheel magazine, co-founded Speedway Illustrated magazine, was the longtime editor of Stock Car Racing magazine and raced Sprint cars before becoming a TV analyst. He is expected to be back on pit road for today's FX telecast.
Greg Biffle looked like he was riding a rocket sled, but his win in Saturday's Busch Series MBNA Platinum 200 was in serious doubt for much of the event. About a quarter-way through the race, his alternator began to fail and weaken his Grainger Ford's battery.
"I looked (at the voltmeter) and it was at 11 ½ volts, so I knew it wasn't charging," Biffle said. "I shut the rear-end blower off, shut the fans off for each of the front brakes so I couldn't use them as much, and cycled the engine fan on and off on the cautions to keep it at about 240 degrees. My helmet air conditioner had already quit so I didn't have to worry about that. If I hadn't have turned everything off when I did, we wouldn't have finished the race."
Rising open-wheel start Kasey Kahne started 13th and finished 20th. Kahne is running a limited Busch Series schedule aboard a Channellock-backed Ford owned by Robert Yates. He admitted he was unprepared for Dover's heavy g-loadings.
"The cars get real hot in the sun and I just got tired," he said. "I was still going all-out in the end, but I just wish I was a little more ready for this race."
More than a few eyebrows went up at the performance of second-year Busch Series driver Jamie McMurray. The Joplin, Mo., native, a veteran of the Craftsman Truck Series, qualified fourth, ran as high as second and was never out of the top five until he hit the wall on lap 172, dropping him to 32nd at the finish.