Texas Friday Report By BobWhitwell - Motorsport News International Fort Worth - The NASCAR Busch Series is extremely competitive! At final count 61 Busch Series teams showed up to qualify for the Coca-Cola 300 at Texas Motor Speedway. So many in...
Texas Friday Report By BobWhitwell - Motorsport News International
Fort Worth - The NASCAR Busch Series is extremely competitive! At final count 61 Busch Series teams showed up to qualify for the Coca-Cola 300 at Texas Motor Speedway. So many in fact that 18 drivers had to work out of their trucks instead of the garage.
Not Dale Earnhardt Jr. who needed a garage, a garage shop. In early morning practice Dale Earnhardt Jr. ran into trouble and ended up with severe damage to his right rear. When they brought the car in everyone assumed they were moving to his backup. But Earnhardt Jr. had already qualified well and the team wasn't giving up so easily.
Being on a NASCAR team is a lot of work. A lot of work!. You only had to watch this crew throughout the day. Earnhardt Jr. crashed at 10:42, by 11:15 the team had cut off the body damage and assessed the mechanical damage. Mechanically the car wasn't hurt too bad. So they decided to fix it. By 1:30 Earnhardt Jr. and his crew we busy beating the body damage smooth. By afternoon practice they had molded new parts completely replacing all damaged components.
Earnhardt Jr. went out for a few laps and was at the time 6th fastest. Amazing considering the amount of damage suffered earlier. By afternoon Busch happy hour they had painted the car and only the trained eye could spot the damage. In happy hour he was 8th fastest.
The amazing thing to see was everyone including Earnhardt Jr. working together to get the car fixed. From wreck to back on the track was a total of 2 = hours. In less than half of a day it was as if nothing had ever happened. Try getting that service at your local garage!
The NASCAR cars and teams started showed at dawn and were greeted by another beautiful day for racing. Drivers wasted no time proving it on the track as Mark Martin set a new track record in his No. 6 Valvoline/Cummins Ford. His 190.127 mph lap shattered Jeremy Mayfield's record of 185.906, which was set last year.
Over 78,000 fans showed up for Qualifying and record numbers are expected this weekend. To accommodate the expanding interest Texas Motor Speedway has added seats with the addition of the Speedway Club and 10,000 temporary seats bringing the total capacity to 220,000.
The speedway club is a spectacular $35 million expansion, featuring five star dining and a state of the art health club. This place is so up-scale they even had Wayne Newton at the grand opening. Now that's Texas Style.
For the first time Texas Motor Speedway has offer fans the opportunity to sponsor a lap. For $250 fans sponsor a lap, which gives them to VIP passes to in infield / pit areas where they get a real close up of the action and hard work that goes into producing a NASCAR event.
But they have a saying in Texas, "If you don't like the weather, hang around a while". The weather has changed bring cold wind and threats of rain back into the area. This will pose a challenge for the Busch drivers, as conditions at rice time will be completely different than the conditions during practice ad setup.