Ken's NASCAR Notebook, 97-03-07

Ken's NASCAR Notebook - March 7, 1997 ------------------------------------------- Notebook Publications ------------------------------------------- Once again, my apologies to all of you for not getting a notebook out on a regular basis. I...

Ken's NASCAR Notebook - March 7, 1997

------------------------------------------- Notebook Publications ------------------------------------------- Once again, my apologies to all of you for not getting a notebook out on a regular basis. I know that I do not guarantee a certain interval, but over the years, many of you know that I try to make them regular. However, my whole family seems to be infected with a very persistent flu bug, and we haven't been able to shake it for the past two weeks. Hopefully, the future notebooks will be more regular.

Oh, I have not switched over to the new email address for the newsletter yet.

------------------------------------------- NASCAR Pick-12 Contest ------------------------------------------- Those of you who were participants in the GOB Pick-6 Contest know that it has been sidelined this year. However, I've found another similar Contest, which is based on a similar theme, and is available on the web. Check out this URL:

You can do all of the following via a Web interface: enter your picks, review the rules and instructions, talk to others on a bulletin board, view the statistics of the previous races, view the overall standings, and much more.

------------------------------------------- Watkins Glen Int'l is now 100% ISC ------------------------------------------- Watkins Glen International is now a full-fledged member of the International Speedway Corporation, joining the famed race tracks at Daytona Beach, Fla., Darlington, S.C., and Talladega, Ala. Corning Inc., which revived racing at the world-renown circuit in 1984, announced Tuesday, March 4, that it reached an agreement to sell its 50-percent ownership in WGI to its co-owner, International Speedway Corporation. WGI owns and operates Watkins Glen International, a 3.4-mile road course in upstate New York that is home to the Bud at the Glen, a NASCAR Winston Cup Series race that attracts large crowds, ranking ninth in television ratings on the 1996 Winston Cup circuit. Corning and ISC brought the facility, which hosted the U.S. Grand Prix from 1961 through 1980, out of bankruptcy and reestablished it as a racing venue in the 1980s.

------------------------------------------- Wheaties & Earnhardt ------------------------------------------- For 64 years Wheaties, "The Breakfast of Champions," has featured champion athletes from almost every sport on the box with one exception. No NASCAR driver has ever appeared on the package. All that changed Thursday when four Wheaties packages featuring seven-time NASCAR champion Dale Earnhardt were unveiled at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. The packages will be available for a limited time in grocery stores in the South. Also unveiled was the No. 3 GM Goodwrench Service race car that will be carrying the familiar Wheaties orange color and logo for NASCAR's Winston Select May 17 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

See the following images on my homepage: The cereal boxes image: (188K) The collector car image: (54K)

Wheaties packages saluting the seven-time champion will appear on grocery shelves throughout the South (predominantly in Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia) this spring. Each of the package fronts has a different pictorial salute to Earnhardt. Products include the 12-ounce and 18-ounce toasted whole-wheat Wheaties (orange box), the 18-ounce Crispy Wheaties 'n Raisins and the 14.75-ounce Honey Frosted Wheaties.

------------------------------------------- Rusty's Controversial Win ------------------------------------------- As many of you know by now, Rusty's win at RIR was put on hold after the engine apparently failed the compression test during the post-race technical inspection. NASCAR officials measured the compression at 14.014 to 1, and determined that the engine was over the 14.0-to-1 maximum allowed by the Winston Cup rules.

The engine was then impounded, and brought to a warehouse for further testing. There, NASCAR's technical crew would reinspect the engine, along with Robin Pemberton (Penske crew chief), Mike Ege (Penske head engine builder) and Jeff Wilson (Penske engine builder). The engine was determined to have a compression of 14.011 to 1

However, the rule book lists the maximum compression ratio at 14.0 to 1. They only have one decimel point listed in the rule book, so technially Rusty's engine was within the rules. However, the compression ratio was definitely more than 14.0 to 1.

So, NASCAR determined that the engine met the technical requirements of the rule as noted by the 14.0 to 1 limit. Wanna bet they modify that rule in the future and include a few more decimel points?

------------------------------------------- NASCAR Fines 2 Drivers @ RIR ------------------------------------------- NASCAR has levied fines against two drivers for actions detrimental to the sport after the Pontiac Excitement 400 at Richmond. The drivers involved were Chad Little driver of the John Deere Pontiac and Robby Gordon driver of the Coors Light Chevy. The two drivers got into each other on the final lap, and then once again on the cool-down lap. The fines, issued by NASCAR, are $10,000 dollars for Little and $5,000 for Gordon.

------------------------------------------- Tri-Star Releases Allen ------------------------------------------- Loy Allen Jr. has been released from the Tri-Star Motorsports team. Gary Bradberry has left the Feed The Children/Sadler Racing team to fill this vacated seat.

------------------------------------------- Shake Up at Sadler Racing ------------------------------------------- First, three crew members quit the Feed The Children/Sadler Racing team upon arriving home after the team failed to qualify for the prestigious Daytona 500. Now, Gary Bradberry, driver, has resigned to fill the seat of Loy Allen, who was released by Tri-Star Motor Sports. Bradberry was scheduled to test the FTC/SADLER RACING Chevrolet Monte Carlo at Atlanta Motor speedway. Ed Berrier of Winston-Salem, NC. has been hired by Sadler Racing to pilot the Feed The Children/Sadler Racing Chevy Monte Carlo in the Primestar 500 in Atlanta. Barrier will also be entered in the Stihl Outdoor Power Tools 300 in the ARCA division.

------------------------------------------- Bob Glidden joins NASCAR ------------------------------------------- Bob Glidden, the winningest driver in the history of the National Hot Rod Association, announced that he has retired from drag racing, and will now develop engines for NASCAR Winston Cup stock cars. Lee Morse, spokesman for the #7 QVC team owned by Geoff Bodine, confirmed that Bob Glidden will do engine development for Bodine's team. In addition, other reports seem to indicate that Glidden is also working on assisting with the engine development for Bill Elliott's team.

------------------------------------------- Bill Elliott's $1 Million Challenge ------------------------------------------- On Saturday, March 8, at the Atlanta Motor Speedway, NASCAR fan and truck driver Tim Vincent will be only the second fan to race against NASCAR champion Bill Elliott for the chance to win $1 million in the "REESE'S/Bill Elliott $1 Million Driving Challenge." Vincent's name was randomly selected from over 300,000 entries. As the grand prize winner of the national promotion, Vincent receives a trip to Atlanta and the once-in-a-lifetime chance to race against NASCAR champion Bill Elliott. The race will be a one-lap timed event on a special course set up on the speedway's front straightaway. If he beats Elliott's time, Vincent will receive a $1 million payout. If he doesn't earn the million dollar purse, Vincent will receive a 1997 "REESE'S-ELLIOTT" Signature Edition Ford Thunderbird as a consolation prize. Whatever the outcome, REESE's will continue the winning spirit with a contribution of $10,000 to the Children's Miracle Network.

------------------------------------------- Mrs. Elliott Passes Away ------------------------------------------- Mrs. Ann Elliott, grandmother of NASCAR Busch Series competitors Hermie and Elliott Sadler, recently passed away. Elliott Sadler, driver of the #29 Diamond Ridge Chevrolet, was extremely close to his grandmother. His parents traveled extensively when he was a child, and Elliott was practically raised by the grandmother after whom he was named. Mrs. Elliott was in her late eighties and was suffering from cancer that left her unable to speak. When Elliott made an early trip to his native Virginia this past Wednesday to see her, he told her he was racing in Richmond that weekend. She responded by giving him the thumbs-up signal.

------------------------------------------- Grand Marshal for Atlanta ------------------------------------------- United States Senator Paul Coverdell (R-Georgia) has been selected as Grand Marshal of the 38th annual Primestar 500 on Sunday, March 9 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Senator Coverdell serves as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on the Western Hemisphere; chairman of the Majority Leader's Task Force on Education; chairman of the Agricultural Committee's Subcommittee on Marketing, Inspection and Product Promotion and is a member of the Small Business Committee. "The Star Spangled Banner" will be performed by country music sensation Clay Walker. He will be joined in voice by North Springs High School for the Performing Arts student Stephanie Dorfman, who will sing "Georgia On My Mind." Mandy Kenknight, who tours with Faith Hill, will perform "The Star Spangled Banner" before the March 8 Stihl Outdoor Power Tools 300.

PS: Robby Gordon in his #40 Coor Light Chevy has taken the Pole for the Primestar 500 in Atlanta. Tim Bender in the #17 Kraft Singles Chevy took the Pole for the Stihl Outdoor Power Tools 300.

------------------------------------------- Happy Motoring :-) =Ken=

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Disclaimer: The information contained herein was compiled from a variety of sources, including the rumor mill and the grapevine, so its accuracy cannot be completely guaranteed. Use of copyrights or trademarks are for descriptive fair-use purposes only. The opinions expressed are my own, and not my employer's.

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Bill Elliott , Robby Gordon , Chad Little , Bob Glidden , Ed Berrier , Gary Bradberry , Jeff Wilson , Elliott Sadler