Garage Chatter: Fontana II

More open-wheelers joining NASCAR: Several drivers have been rumored to be near deals with NASCAR teams that would place them in Busch and Cup cars for the 2007 season. Motorsport.com has learned that Paul Tracy will drive for ...

More open-wheelers joining NASCAR: Several drivers have been rumored to be near deals with NASCAR teams that would place them in Busch and Cup cars for the 2007 season.

Motorsport.com has learned that Paul Tracy will drive for Riley-D'Hondt Motorsports in the Busch series next season with the possibility of running a handful of Nextel Cup events. Tracy will continue to compete in Champ Car for Forsythe Racing.

"Yes, I will be running six to eight races for them," said Tracy.

Tracy is set to make his last Busch series start this year this weekend at California Speedway for Frank Cicci Racing in the No. 34 car.

In addition, Champ Car driver A.J. Allmendinger tested a Toyota Truck this week at Richmond International Speedway. Bill Davis Racing is in discussions with Allmendinger to pilot a ride in the Craftsman Truck Series next season.

Other names in the rumor mill suspected to be coming to NASCAR include Sam Hornish, Jr. and Jacques Villeneuve.

Stewart involved in crash: During a Kasey Kahne charity race, reigning Nextel Cup champion Tony Stewart took a serious hit but luckily he has a hard noggin' and was well enough to practice the No. 20 Home Depot Chevrolet Friday at California Speedway.

"I felt bad for him," said Kahne. "He hit the wall. It wasn't his fault. Something happened. You could tell something happened and he got into the wall. We went on to race and finished third. We had a good time and had a sellout crowd there, too. I think there was about 10,000 people at Skagit Speedway, and that might have been the biggest crowd they've ever had. We've done 'em four times this year and had four top fives. It's been good. That's the four races I'm going to do. I didn't clip or hit any thing hard."

Stewart's headache was well worth it for the Kasey Kahne Foundation. They raised $144,000 to aid disadvantaged and critically ill children.

Wallace OK after crash: Rusty Wallace walked away from an auto accident after a woman ran a stop sign and plowed into Wallace's Dodge Durango. No one involved in the crash needed medical assistance. In fact, Wallace felt well enough to take the time to get a plug in for his former Cup series manufacturer, Dodge.

"You hear car companies talk about safety a lot," said Wallace. "But I can tell you that (wife) Patti and I are both really thankful for the research and development that Dodge puts into the safety of their vehicles."

Bill Lester will attempt to make his third Nextel Cup start in this weekend's SONY HD 500 at California Speedway. He will drive the #23 Bill Davis Racing Dodge. Lester became the first black driver to compete in a Nextel Cup race in 20 years when he qualified for the Golden Corral 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Lester attended the University of California at Berkley, where his father is a professor, and has many family members in the area.

Desperate Housewife to start race: "Melrose Place" and "Desperate Housewives" red-headed vixen Marcia Cross will serve as the honorary starter for the Sony HD 500 at California Speedway.

"American Idol" singer Kelly Clarkson will serve as the Honorary Grand Marshal for Sunday night's event.

Raines back in No. 96 Chevy in 2007: Tony Raines has been re-signed to drive the No. 96 Hall of Fame Racing DLP HDTV Chevrolet for the entire 2007 NASCAR Nextel Cup series season. Raines split that ride with veteran Terry Labonte this year.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Tony Stewart , Rusty Wallace , Jacques Villeneuve , Paul Tracy , Tony Raines , Kasey Kahne , A.J. Allmendinger , Bill Lester
Teams Bill Davis Racing , Hall of Fame Racing