The Stock Car Gazette e-zine for Thursday, 10/01/09
Penske Deal to Purchase Saturn Officially Off… read more in today’s Stock Car Gazette, plus other stock car racing news!
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Courtesy of www.FrontStretch.com
Today’s Top News
by Phil Allaway
Penske Deal to Purchase Saturn Officially Off
On Wednesday, General Motors announced the dissolution of its Saturn brand, a surprising development after talks to sell to car magnate and Cup team owner Roger Penske fell through.
With that said, here’s a quick timeline on the deal and how it privately crumbled. As part of GM’s bankruptcy restructuring, the company had initially pledged to sell off the Hummer, Opel, Saab, and Saturn brands while dissolving Pontiac and focusing on the core brands of Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac, and GMC. Back during the summer, a deal had been reached with Penske for the Saturn brand, where the influx of cash from his purchase would allow him to continue to sell those cars manufactured in GM plants until the end of 2011. But the future beyond that remained a question mark, dependent on negotiating with another manufacturer to build those cars.
Unfortunately, that big question mark was never answered fully, as the main reason given for the end of talks was the inability to find someone else willing to build the Saturns after the GM contract expired. A press release from the Penske Automotive Group stated that Penske had found and negotiated terms with an unnamed manufacturer to take over for GM following the end of their contract, but that company’s Board of Directors rejected the deal.
In addition, when the Opel brand (a European brand, mainly) was sold to Magna, there was a stipulation that would have disallowed Saturn to sell cars based on Opels in the United States. This would have resulted in the Astra and Aura models being pulled out of the market, forcing Saturn to trudge on with the Vue, Outlook, and nothing more.
As a result of the rejection, Penske was forced to release the following short statement:
“Without that agreement, the company has determined that the risks and uncertainties related to the availability of future products prohibit the company from moving forward with this transaction.”
As for GM’s side of the story, new company CEO Fritz Henderson is disappointed with the turn of events to say the least.
“This is very disappointing news, and comes after months of hard work by hundreds of dedicated employees and Saturn retailers who tried to make the new Saturn a reality,” Henderson said in a press release, emphasizing circumstances beyond their control as the reason for the failure. “PAG’s (Penske Automotive Group, Inc.) announcement explained that their decision was not based on interactions with GM or Saturn retailers.”
As a result of the announcement, the Saturn dealership network will be phased out gradually over an undetermined period of time. Owners of Saturns will also still be able to have their cars serviced at other GM dealerships once the phase out is complete.
Courtesy of Insider Racing News
Bowyer’s Team Best On Pit Road
Clint Bowyer’s crew took top honors at Dover International Speedway, winning the Tissot Pit Road Precision Award in Sunday’s (Sept. 27) AAA 400 Sprint Cup race. The No. 33 crew, out of the Richard Childress Racing stable, picked up its second Tissot win of the season and became the sixth multiple winner of the pit road competition. The first Tissot win for Bowyer’s crew was at Atlanta in March. Bowyer’s BB&T Chevy Impala SS spent the least amount of time on pit road in Dover – 257.194 seconds – during the 400-lap race at the Monster Mile.
Courtesy of Jayski
NEXT RACE: Kansas Race Information/Stats
The Entry List for the Price Chopper 400 at Kansas Speedway is posted, 45 teams/drivers [for 43 spots] are listed, including:
Not in top 35 of 2009 owners points:
#09-Mike Bliss (2009 Race Winner as owner)(38 in owners pts/28 attempts)
#13-Max Papis (44/14)
#21-Bill Elliott (Past Champ 1988)(44/9)
#25-Brad Keselowski (2009 Race Winner as driver)(46/6)
#36-Michael McDowell (42/28)
#37-Kevin Hamlin (supposedly in for next 2 races)(45/20)
#66-Dave Blaney (41/28)
#71-Bobby Labonte (2000 Past Champ)(37/28)
#82-Scott Speed (36/28)
#87-Joe Nemechek (39/28)
In the event qualifying is rained out or cancelled:
the eight who would make it : #’s 09,25,71,21,82,87,66,36
missing the race would be : #’s 37,13
Top-35 in Owner Points and guaranteed a starting spot at Kansas:
No changes, but the spread between 35th and 36th now down to 124 points
34) #7-Gordon/Robby Gordon: 2258, +291
35) #34-Andretti/Earnhardt Ganassi: 2091, 124 points ahead of 36th
these teams/ drivers must qualify by speed but are close to the top-35:
36) #82-Speed/Red Bull: 1967, 124 points out of 35th
37) #71-Gilliland-Labonte/TRG: 1682, -409
The teams are NOT locked in past the next race as the owners points change after each race.
Petty says merger negotiations still ongoing: Richard Petty Motorsports co-owner Richard Petty says that negotiations on the team’s proposed merger with Yates Racing are continuing, and he still expects the deal to be completed. RPM and Yates officials announced Sept. 10 that they planned to merge. At the time, Petty said he thought the deal would close within a few weeks. “It’s still in negotiations, and so far they ain’t signed nothing,” Petty said Wednesday following a news conference to promote the upcoming races at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. “I feel like if it went this far, we are going to go forward with it.”(SceneDaily)(10-1-2009)
Harvick to sport different colors at Kansas: Reese’s, a major associate sponsor of RCR’s #29 Chevy that Kevin Harvick drives, kicks into high gear this weekend in Kansas as Harvick and the #29 team transform their bright yellow-and-red Shell-Pennzoil Chevrolet into a bright orange Reese’s racing machine for the Price Chopper 400. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are peanut butter-filled chocolate cups. They were created in 1928 by H.B. Reese, a former dairy farmer and foreman for Milton S. Hershey. The H.B. Reese Candy Co., established in the basement of Reese’s house in Hershey, Pa., went on to merge with The Hershey Company in 1963 due to the popularity of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Today, Reese’s has become the No. 1 selling candy bar in the United States and the Reese’s brand is the most successful brand owned by The Hershey Company.(RCR), see images of the scheme on my #29 Team Schemes page.(10-1-2009)
New NASCAR themed show: coming to the History Channel is “Madhouse.” Previously announced as in development, the reality series revolves around rivalries at a North Carolina NASCAR track, where local families race to continue a 61-year feuding tradition. The show is produced by Triage Entertainment, with Stephen Kroopnick, Stu Schreiberg, Jym Buss, Grant Kahler, Aengus James, Tim Tracy, David McKillop and Carl Lindahl executive producing; 13 episodes have been ordered, and a first-quarter premiere is planned.(Hollywood Reporter)(10-1-2009)
Richard Petty Motorsports co-owner Richard Petty said he didn’t know much about the business relationship formed between RPM majority owner George Gillett and Saudi Prince Faisal bin Fahad bin Abdullah Al Saud to explore commercial opportunities with Gillett and his soccer and motorsports properties. “That’s one of George’s deals,” Petty said. “You’ll have to talk him on that. That’s purely his deal. He’d been meeting with these guys for a pretty good while about his [English] football team.”(SceneDaily)(10-1-2009)
Courtesy of Racin’ Today
Woody: Drivers Alive Today Because of Car of Tomorrow – www.racintoday.com/archives/10439
Wednesday Memo: Kansas Is Home Of Bizarre Finishes – www.racintoday.com/archives/10443
P R E S S * R E L E A S E S
YATES RACING TO HOLD FAN DAY AT THE SHOP ON OCTOBER 15th
Yates Racing will open its door to the public with shop view and a driver autograph session
CONCORD, N.C. (September 30, 2009) – Yates Racing will hold their bi-annual Fan Appreciation Day on Thursday, October 15. Fans are encouraged to come out and see the Yates Racing campus and receive a VIP view of the Yates Racing shop. Special autograph appearances from Erik Darnell, Paul Menard and Doug Yates will begin at 10:30 a.m.
“We had so much success from our first Fan Day this season that it was an easy decision to do it again for the fans,” said Yates Racing owner, Doug Yates. “Not only will the fans be able to meet the drivers and get their autograph, but they also get a chance to see behind-the-scenes of our No. 96 and No. 98 shops.”
The autograph session will begin at 10:30 a.m. 150 autograph tickets will be distributed at 9:30 a.m. for the driver autograph session.
Sorenson, Gilliland and Grissom to Serve as Guests on Oct. 1st Edition of Race 2 Win Radio
TAYLORS, SC (October 1, 2009) – On October 1st, Jeff Holtzclaw and the gang will welcome Reed Sorenson, driver of the famed No. 43 Dodge for Richard Petty Motorsports, David Gilliland, who recently announced a three-race deal to drive the No. 02 Farm Bureau Insurance Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing, and Kyle Grissom, driver of the No. 32 car in the UARA Series and son of former NASCAR competitor Steve Grissom, as special guests. This episode will air live on Thursday from 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET at www.blogtalkradio.com/race2win.
Reed Sorenson will be driving the No. 10 AccuDoc Solutions Toyota for Braun Racing in the NASCAR Nationwide Series event at Kansas, in addition to his duties behind the wheel of the No. 43 McDonald’s Dodge. Sorenson will be on hand to share his view of the lap 32 accident that saw Joey Logano’s car flip through the air multiple times last weekend at Dover and talk about the safety of NASCAR’s new car.
David Gilliland is fresh off of an announcement that could be the opportunity of a lifetime. Gilliland, who was left without a seat for seven races following a game of musical rides played by car owners, turned what could have been a negative into a definite positive by gaining the opportunity to drive the No. 02 Farm Bureau Insurance car for JGR at Charlotte, Texas and Homestead.
Being the son of a NASCAR champion might get your foot in the door as far as the racing game is concerned but it is up to you to prove that you have the talent to get the job done. Just ask 19-year-old Kyle Grissom, whose father Steve was the 1993 champion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Grissom is currently competing in the UARA Series, where he is the circuit’s latest winner, as well as driving a partial dirt late model schedule. He will also be behind the wheel of a car fielded by Richard Childress Racing in the ARCA RE/MAX event on October 11th at Rockingham.
This week, award-winning journalist Rick Minter, senior writer for RacinToday.com, will take his turn on the Writer’s Block, a weekly segment he shares with Kenny Bruce, assistant managing editor of NASCAR Scene, in which two of the top writers in the sport discuss the biggest stories in and around NASCAR.
Filling in for Mike Calinoff on the Keys to Winning segment this week will be either ARCA owner Eddie Sharp or driver Justin Lofton. The pair, who has totaled six wins in 2009, holds a 25-point lead in the series standings with two races remaining on the schedule.
Race 2 Win Radio features NASCAR veteran Jeff Holtzclaw as host, with Heather Meyer of the Stock Car Gazette, professional racecar driver Blake Feese and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competitor Caitlin Shaw serving as co-hosts. The show airs live every Thursday afternoon from 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET at www.blogtalkradio.com/race2win. Immediately following the live show, all episodes are available on-demand or on-the-go.
Listeners are always welcome to join in on the show. To comment on any topic or submit a question for any guest or host, send an email to email@example.com anytime or call (646) 200-4485 during the live broadcast.
Race fans also have the opportunity to chat with co-host Heather Meyer in the show’s chat room during the broadcast and submit questions or suggest topics with this feature. Users must sign up for an account at www.blogtalkradio.com before they can chat.
Race 2 Win Radio – NASCAR Radio at the Speed of Sound
N A S C A R * N A T I O N W I D E * S E R I E S
EVENT – Kansas Lottery 300 (200 laps/ 300 miles)
TRACK – Kansas Speedway (1.5-Mile Tri-Oval)
DATE – Saturday, October 3, 2009
TV/ RADIO BROADCAST INFO – ESPN2 (coverage begins at 3:00 p.m. EST) / MRN (broadcast begins at 3:00 p.m. EST)
Courtesy of Jayski
NEXT RACE: Kansas Lottery 300, 3:30 pm/et, Saturday, October 3, 2009 at Kansas Speedway
Entry List: UPDATE: There are 52 cars on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s Kansas Lottery 300 at Kansas Speedway. Some notes:
Brad Coleman is driving the Phoenix Racing #1;
Driver of the #07 is TBA;
Parker Kligerman will make his series debut in the Penske #22;
Kevin Conway will drive the #26;
Driver of the #31 is TBA;
Mike Bliss will drive the #40 for Key Motorsports;
Danny O’Quinn will drive the #44, which appears to be a second car for the #07 team;
Michael McDowell will be back in the #96;(9-28-2009)
UPDATE: Brad Coleman twittered Monday evening that he will not be in the #1.(9-28-2009)
UPDATE 2: Jennifer Jo Cobb will be in the #79 for Derrike Cope.(9-29-2009)
UPDATE 2: David Gilliland will drive the #1 for Phoenix Racing.(9-29-2009)
Conway making debut with #26 team: Kevin Conway will have a fresh start at Kansas Speedway this weekend as he is making his NASCAR Nationwide Series debut with a new #26 ExtenZe Racing team. Conway races to Kansas with a new team, new crew chief [Jefferson Hodges] and high expectations for this weekend. ExtenZe and Conway will be paired together for the remainder of the 2009 NNS season and for the full 2010 NNS Schedule. (Conway PR)(10-1-2009)
Courtesy of The Hot Lap
Carl Edwards, in honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, will drive a “pinked-out” version of his No. 60 Save-A-Lot Ford Fusion in Saturday’s Kansas Lottery 300 Nationwide Series race at Kansas Speedway.
Save-A-Lot food stores, in partnering with Susan G. Komen for the Cure, has pledged $100,000 to aid in the fight against breast cancer and to raise awareness through the millions of NASCAR fans at the track and watching the race on television.(Kansascitystar.com)
A R C A (Automobile Racing Club of America)
Courtesy of ARCA
ARCA RE/MAX Series Takes Center Stage Thursday at Kansas Speedway in Kansas Lottery 150; Live on SPEED; Live Streaming Audio Coverage Too at ARCAracing.com
KANSAS CITY (9-30-09) – With a tight championship points battle coming down to the wire, the ARCA RE/MAX Series will take center stage Thursday afternoon at Kansas Speedway when the Kansas Lottery 150 comes to life on the 1.5-mile speedway.
At present, 42 cars are entered, and 36 teams have already gone through technical inspection here Wednesday afternoon in preparation for tomorrow’s race, live on SPEED at 5:00 PM ET.
In addition to determining ARCA’s superspeedway champion at Kansas, the overall championship is extremely close. With just two events remaining in 2009 (Kansas Oct. 1 & Rockingham Oct. 11), Justin Lofton leads rookie Parker Kligerman by just 25 points. Kligerman, a Penske Development driver who drives the Cunningham Motorsports Dodge, leads in the win column with a season-high seven wins to Lofton’s six.
“Winning races is our main goal,” said Kligerman. “We come to win. If we accomplish that, the championship will take care of itself.”
Kligerman will also attempt to qualify for this Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide Series Kansas Lottery 300.
To add more intensity, the Kansas Lottery 150 will be a one-day show for the ARCA RE/MAX Series with practice scheduled from 9:00 to 11:00 AM local time followed by Menards Pole Qualifying presented by Ansell at 1:00 PM. The Kansas Lottery 150 is live on SPEED at 5:00 PM Eastern.
In addition to the live telecast on SPEED, the ARCA Racing Network will feature live streaming audio at ARCAracing.com of all the on-track activity to include practice, qualifying and the race.
U S A R (United Speed Alliance Racing)
Courtesy of USAR
Drew Herring Accelerates His Education On And Off The Track
By Amanda Earle
CONCORD, N.C. — To USAR Pro Cup Series competitors, Drew Herring is the circuit’s points leader, but to his fellow North Carolina State University students he’s just another engineering major.
C O L U M N S / C O M M E N T A R I E S
Insider Racing News
Johnson Enjoys Sticking It To His Competition
by Doug Demmons
Insider Racing News
Is Earnhardt Just Wasting Everybody’s Time?
by David Kingsley
The Nascar Insiders
Logano Needs A Short Memory
This Just In: October 1st – Tribute to Her!
By PR | 10/01/2009
Since its inception, NASCAR has been a sport of statistics. From lap times to RPMs, the numbers behind the speed have captivated millions and provided a quantifiable measuring stick for evaluating racing greatness.
The Island Of Brian France
In contrast to the growling and hands-on style of his late father, Brian France continues to appear in the media as an executive completely insulated from the reality of the world around him. Readers of TDP have seen France offer public words on topics from Mauricia Grant to NASCAR’s drug policy.
T V * L I S T I N G S
Courtesy of Race Fan TV
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 1
3:00P-4:00 SPEED NASCAR Camping World Touring Series East Sunoco 150, Dover Intl. Speedway, Dover, DE, Sept 25/09, HD, N
5:00P-7:00 SPEED ARCA RE/MAX Series Kansas Lottery 150, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, L
5:00P-5:30 espn2 NASCAR Now, HD, L
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 2
1:00A-2:30 SPEED FIA Formula One PRACTICE, Fuji Television Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka, Japan, L
1:00P-2:30 SPEED NASCAR Sprint Cup PRACTICE, Price Chopper 400, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
3:00P-4:30 SPEED NASCAR Nationwide Series PRACTICE, Kansas Lottery 300, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
4:30P-6:00 espn2/TSN2 NASCAR Sprint Cup QUALIFYING, Price Chopper 400, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
6:00P-7:00 espn2 NASCAR Nationwide Series FINAL PRACTICE, Kansas Lottery 300, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
7:00P-7:30 espn2 NASCAR Now, HD, L
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 3
12:55A-2:00 TSN2 FIA Formula One QUALIFYING, Fuji Television Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka, Japan, 16:9, L
1:00A-2:30 SPEED FIA Formula One QUALIFYING, Fuji Television Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka, Japan, L (may be blacked out in Canada)
10:00A-12:00n SPEED NASCAR Nationwide Series QUALIFYING, Kansas Lottery 300, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
12:30P-1:30 SPEED NASCAR Sprint Cup PRACTICE, Price Chopper 400, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
1:30P-3:30 SPEED Grand-Am KONI Challenge, Miller Motorsports Park, Tooele, UT, Sept 20/09, N
3:00P-3:30 espn2 NASCAR Nationwide Series COUNTDOWN, Kansas Lottery 300, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
3:30P-6:30 espn2 NASCAR Nationwide Series Kansas Lottery 300, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L (expect green at 3:46P)
4:00P-6:30 TSN NASCAR Nationwide Series Kansas Lottery 300, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
5:00P-6:00 SPEED IHRA Nitro Jam Drag Racing Northen Nationals, U.S. 131 Motorsports Park, Martin, MI, Aug 2/09, N
6:30P-7:30 espn2 NASCAR Sprint Cup FINAL PRACTICE, Price Chopper 400, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, SDD, N
8:00P-11:00 SPEED World of Outlaws, sprint cars, Williams Grove Speedway, Mechanicsburg, PA, HD, SDD, N
10:30P-12:30A espn2 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing QUALIFYING, O’Reilly Mid-South Nationals, Memphis, TN, HD, SDD, N
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 4
12:30A-3:00 SPEED FIA Formula One Fuji Television Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka, Japan, L (may be blacked out in Canada)
12:55A-3:00 TSN FIA Formula One Fuji Television Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka, Japan, 16:9, L
10:00A-11:00 espn2 NASCAR Now, pre-race, HD, L
11:00A-1:00P SPEED NASCAR RaceDay, preview of today’s Price Chopper 400 at Kansas Speedway, HD, L
1:00P-2:00 ABC/TSN NASCAR Sprint Cup COUNTDOWN, Price Chopper 400, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS, HD, L
2:00P-6:00 ABC/TSN NASCAR Sprint Cup Price Chopper 400, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, KS HD, L (expect green at 2:16P)
3:00P-4:00 SPEED FIM World Superbike, Magny-Cours, France, Race #1, HD, SDD
4:00P-5:00 SPEED FIM World Superbike, Magny-Cours, France, Race #2, HD, SDD
5:00P-6:00 SPEED FIM 250 World Championship, Bwin.com Grande Premio De Portugal, Estoril, Portugal, HD, SDD
6:00P-7:00 SPEED FIM MotoGP World Championship, Bwin.com Grande Premio De Portugal, Estoril, Portugal, HD, SDD
7:00P-10:00 espn2 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing ELIMINATIONS, O’Reilly Mid-South Nationals, Memphis, TN, HD, SDD, N
7:00P-8:00 HD Theater World Rally Championship, 2009 Season Preview, HD, N
7:00P-8:00 SPEED The SPEED Report, HD, N
8:00P-9:00 SPEED NASCAR Victory Lane, Price Chopper 400 at Kansas Speedway, HD, N
8:00P-9:00 HD Theater World Rally Championship, 2009 Rally Ireland, Jan 30-Feb 1/09, HD, N
9:00P-10:00 SPEED Wind Tunnel with Dave Despain, HD, L
10:00P-11:00 espn2 NASCAR Now, post-race, HD, L
We do not list all the programming offered by SPEED; for complete listings go to their website, www.speedtv.com/schedule/
Always CHECK YOUR LOCAL LISTINGS!
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