Garage Chatter: Phoenix

Rusty Wallace announced another Busch team entry for 2005: Wallace and Miller High Life announced Friday that a second Busch team has been formed to run the 2005 season. Jeremy Mayfield will pilot the No. 64 Dodge in 17 races of the 35 event ...

Rusty Wallace announced another Busch team entry for 2005: Wallace and Miller High Life announced Friday that a second Busch team has been formed to run the 2005 season. Jeremy Mayfield will pilot the No. 64 Dodge in 17 races of the 35 event schedule.

RWI Racing also field two other entries, the No. 64 Top Flite Dodge run by Jamie McMurray and the No. 66 Duraflame Dodge also piloted by McMurray.

Wallace went on to say that he will fill the seat of the No. 64 Dodge for the inaugural Mexico City Busch event next year.

Five man race for the Cup With just three races left in the NEXTEL Chase for the Championship just 98 points separate positions one through five. Jimmie Johnson has shown that anything is possible, just four events ago he sat ninth in points but three consecutive wins have volleyed him to second place.

Kurt Busch continues to lead by 59 points over Johnson. Jeff Gordon (-72), Mark Martin (-81) and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (-98) are the racers whose mathematical odds could catch Busch in the last three races.

"I think the pressure is on the second place guy," said Busch. "He's (Johnson) still got a lot of work to catch us."

NASCAR still mum on liquor sponsorships: NASCAR has not officially overturned their rule on no hard liquor sponsorships in the Cup series. With Crown Royal looking to land on the No. 99 Ford of Carl Edwards and Jack Daniels to the No. 30 Chevy at Richard Childress Racing (no driver named) the garage is anxious to hear when NASCAR will change their rule.

It is expected that other liquor companies are also interested in primary and subsidiary sponsorships if all goes well with the two initial teams.

Ryan Newman charted the fastest time in final practice for Cup teams. Kevin Harvick, Kasey Kahne, Elliott Sadler and Tony Stewart complete the top five quickest times.

Cuppers pace first practice for Busch teams: Cup regulars Jamie McMurray and Kevin Harvick paced first practice for the Busch series Bahas' Supermarkets 200 at PIR. McMurray's lap of 130.454 mph bested Harvick's lap by 0.134 seconds. Ashton Lewis, Jr., Kenny Wallace and Greg Biffle complete the top five quickest times from the morning run.

The No. 00 Haas/Carter Motorsports and Labonte Motorsports are teaming up to put Justin Labonte in the No. 00 Busch series Chevy. Terry Labonte will also run 10 Busch races next season with that team. It was not known whether it would be in the No. 00 or in a companion car.

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Jeff Gordon , Terry Labonte , Jeremy Mayfield , Tony Stewart , Rusty Wallace , Kevin Harvick , Kenny Wallace , Greg Biffle , Kurt Busch , Ryan Newman , Jimmie Johnson , Jamie McMurray , Justin Labonte , Kasey Kahne , Carl Edwards , Ashton Lewis , Elliott Sadler , Mark Martin
Teams Richard Childress Racing