Misc. Notes 95-09-20

--------------------------------------------- Silly Season is surely in full swing, and about to go into overtime! --------------------------------------------- As you know, Jeff Burton is joining the Roush team in a 3rd car next season, the car...

--------------------------------------------- Silly Season is surely in full swing, and about to go into overtime! --------------------------------------------- As you know, Jeff Burton is joining the Roush team in a 3rd car next season, the car will be sponsored by Exide Batteries, and Buddy Parrott will be the team's General Manager. Now, more details unfold and it looks like Jack Roush is buying the #26 team from Kenny Bernstein and will use the present car number on his new team as well, to keep the 6, 16, and 26 cars in a similar numbering pattern. One rumor has Jack Roush getting the Ford Quality Care sponsorship, which is entirely believelable with his ties to Ford.

Billy Stavola has stated that he will continue Winston Cup racing next year, even though he will lose his sponsor (Raybestos) and his driver (Jeff Burton). Stavola says that the list of drivers he's talking with does include Hut Stricklin, but no replacement has been picked yet. This news along with Roush buying the #26 team, definitely leaves Hut's attempt to buy the present Quaker State team in serious doubt.

I reported last time that Ford Quality Care & Red Carpet Leasing would likely replace Exide on Geoff Bodine's car, but I've since seen reports that Geoff is still looking for a sponsor (and the above rumor that Roush is supposed to get them). Geoff's also quipped that he was quite surprised by Exide's exodus.

Of course that means I'm still not sure if Bud Moore's team is losing their current sponsor from Ford's Quality Care, but its starting to look that way. Read the next note and you'll learn that Dick Trickle will probably not be the driver, as rumors of Michael Waltrip leaving the Bahari Racing team to join Bud Moore's team are starting to solidify.

Pennzoil team owner Chuck Rider has said that its too early confirm whether or not Johnny Benson Jr.will succeed Waltrip in the Bahari ride, but you can infer that a driver change is likely. However, Mikey still denies that he is leaving.

Dale Jarrett will drive a new #88 car for Robert yates Racing in 1996, with a question as to whom the sponsor is going to be, while teammate Ernie Irvan will return to the #28 Texaco Havoline Ford.

Ricky Rudd's crew chief Bill Ingle is definitely leaving the RPM Tide-Downy Ford team at the end of this year, and will launch his own Winston Cup team next year. He has stated that he will drive for himself, but no word on sponsors or make or any other specfics.

And lets not forget that Andy Petree is leaving the #3 Childress/Earnhardt team for the #33 Skoal Bandit team next year.

And now some new & shocking news....

The Wood Brothers and Morgan Shepard are rumored to be parting ways in 1996, but I have a hard time believing this one, since Morgan signed a multi-year contract with them and stated he wanted to retire with them. Stranger things have happened though....

Junior Johnson is planning to sell the #27 Hooters team to Hooters executive Bob Brooks and will also completely disassociate himself from the #23 Smokin' Joes team. He will, however, remain active with his #11 Lowe's team. What will happen with the #27 Hooters team? Keep reading...

Elton Sawyer and crew chief Mike Hill plan to buy the #27 Hooters team from Bob Brooks, and are making plans to continue their Winston Cup operation for 1996.

With a move by Valvoline to stream line their racing sponsorships and with Kenny Bernstein selling the #26 team, Quaker State will reportedly replace Valvoline as associated sponsor on all 3 Hendrick cars.

---------------- More on Mr. Momota ---------------- Japanese driver Kenji Momota, a 33-year old mechancial engineer, will drive a Chevrolet SuperTruck owned by Randy MacDonald and sponsored by Marukatsu (who imports US cars to Japan) and Action Performance Companies (who designs and sells racing collectables). Kenji recently relocated to the Charlotte area and plans to drive the full 96 SuperTruck schedule, switch to Busch Grand National in 1997, and then make his Winston Cup debut in the year 2000. He plans on running the SuperTruck race non Oct 27th at Phoenix. Kenji has extensive racing experience in Japan, and has recently completed a number driving schools.

----------------------------------- SuperTruck News - Manufacturer's Championship ----------------------------------- Ron Hornaday's win at the Flemington, NJ race clinched the inaugural SuperTruck manufacturer's championship for Chevrolet.

-------------------- Shawna Robinson update.... -------------------- Or, we now know what Shawna has been doing since she lost her BGN ride.... Shawna Robinson - one of five female drivers who have attempted BGN - is pregnant. Atleast that's the word from Winston Cup Scene magazine. Shawna and her husband, Jeff Clark, who works as a jackman and in the engine room for Robert Yates Racing, were married in November and recently revealed that their first child is due in early May, 1996. Shawna lost her BGN ride following the Nashville race in March. That team merged its operation with Pennsylvania driver Andy Belmont, and continues to race. To help make ends meet, Shawna started an interior decorating business in Charlotte.

----------------------------- Injuries in a pit fire during the MBNA 200 ----------------------------- During a pit stop by driver Doug Heveron in Saturday's MBNA 200 Dover Downs International Speedway three mend were injured when gas splashed from a fuel can , apparently igniting on a hot wheel rotor on the left-rear of the car. Crewman Terry Huntsinger, from Spartanburg, S.C., was released Saturday night after being treated for second-degree burns to his hand and forearm. Fred Sharples, a NASCAR official from Ormond Beach, Fla., sustained burns to the face, arm, hand and left leg. He was initially listed in critical condition after reaching Kent General Hospital, but was quickly upgraded to stable and then, on Sunday, to fair. Crewmen Patrick Beckley, also from Spartanburg, also remained in the hospital Sunday with burns to his face. He also was upgraded from stable to fair condition. The three men were caught in a ball of flame that erupted while refueling the car, but Heveron was able to drive away from the pit and the fire was quickly extinguished. Heveron continued and went on to finish sixth in the race.

--------------------- New NASCAR Rules for 1996 --------------------- NASCAR just announced two new rules for next season: 1. The top 25 qualifiers on the first day will be locked into their qualifying times, as opposed to the top 20 as it is now. 2. Only two air wrenchs will be allowed over the wall during pit stops, which means that the third wrench currently used to remove the lug nuts on the left side ahead of time will have to be omitted, slowing pit stops down.

Happy Motoring :-) =Ken=

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeff Burton , Ernie Irvan , Dale Jarrett , Dick Trickle , Michael Waltrip , Kenny Bernstein , Shawna Robinson , Elton Sawyer , Johnny Benson , Ron Hornaday Jr. , Andy Belmont , Andy Petree , Junior Johnson , Jack Roush , Robert Yates
Teams Yates Racing