Garage Chatter: Daytona Shootout

Gordon/Earnhardt have parts confiscated: NASCAR confiscated the intake manifold system of Robby Gordon's No. 7 Chevy and the transmission of the No. 8 Budweiser Chevy of Dale Earnhardt, Jr. shortly before initial practice for the Budweiser ...

Gordon/Earnhardt have parts confiscated: NASCAR confiscated the intake manifold system of Robby Gordon's No. 7 Chevy and the transmission of the No. 8 Budweiser Chevy of Dale Earnhardt, Jr. shortly before initial practice for the Budweiser Shootout.

Kahne blows engine: Kasey Kahne had an engine problem during first practice for the shootout forcing the No. 9 Dodge team to replace the motor.

"I was in a real heavy pack," said Kahne. "Two cars were in front of me, and the rest behind. I just stayed up high and hoped everybody would go low. Everybody did. It was pretty easy to miss. I didn't move around much. I just stayed up by the wall and stayed out of the way. The car looks good. We've just go to get out there and get some drafting practice.

"We won't be able to get out for anymore of the first practice, but we'll have it ready to go for the final session."

Kasey did make it out for final practice and charted the seventh quickest time.

Mears wrecks in final Shootout practice: Casey Mears made slight contact with the No. 21 Ford of Ricky Rudd and spun during final practice for Shootout cars. Rudd and Mears both wheeled their rides into the garage or repairs

"I thought I was clear and I wasn't," said Mears. "I came down on him. Fortunately nothing bad happened. His car has a little ding and our car is OK. It was just a timing error on my part. I had the momentum to go by and I thought I got cleared to go back and pick up the draft. It was my fault, and it way my mistake but everybody is OK. Ricky was cool when I went to apologize, but he (Fatback McSwain) needs to calm down a little bit. Stuff happens. You don't try to make mistakes, and you need to calm down when stuff like that happens.

"I came over to apologize and he decided to be all upset about it. The car is real good. When the tires went down and we slid to the grass it got the valence a little bit, but we're all right. It's going to be cold tomorrow night, and I think that's going to be good. The tires will have more grip. The cars might be a little looser, but I think the race is going to be good. The colder it is the longer the tires will last. I'm looking forward to it. We've got a car that can win, and we're going to be on the gas. Winning is the plan. That's the only plan. I think the engine is OK. When it started to spin I pushed the clutch in, so it should be OK. We'll fire it up and make sure everything is OK."

Nemechek paces both practice sessions: After two Shootout practice sessions, Joe Nemechek has gone to the head of the class to win the event. Nemechek paced both practice sessions and looked pretty sporty in his No. 01 Chevy.

My guess: All Yates: Dale Jarrett drew the lucky beer bottle at the draw party to place the No. 88 Ford on the pole for the Shootout. Jarrett, the defending race winner and three-time Daytona 500 winner, is my pick for the win tomorrow night. Yates horsepower combined with a great test here in January have breathed new life into this team. Expect them to come out of the box strong and be a threat for wins and the chase.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Dale Jarrett , Joe Nemechek , Robby Gordon , Casey Mears , Kasey Kahne