Crew Chief Club on NASCAR LIVE

It's all about NASCAR

Posts Tagged ‘Tony Stewart’

Hendrick Motorsports’ Jimmie Johnson ready for the challenge to win fourth consecutive Cup title

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 31, 2009

Hendrick Motorsports driver Jimmie Johnson is no stranger to enjoying historic marks in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series.

Last season he tied Cale Yarborough‘s mark of three consecutive Cup championships. He’s now won back-to-back races at famed Indianapolis Speedway. And he’s chasing a record of his own – a fourth consecutive title.

With his win at the Brickyard, Johnson moved to second in the standings. He also earned his third win of the season, which would place him no worse than second in the realigned standings once the Chase For The Sprint Cup begins in six weeks. Mark Martin leads the series with four wins and Kyle Busch also has three.

As Johnson looks over his past four seasons, he admits that even he is a little awed by his team’s level of success. He won five races en route to his first championship in 2006, 10 in his 2007 title run and seven last year.

This season, he’s won at Martinsville Speedway, Dover International Speedway and now Indy.

Is even he sometimes surprised by his success?

“In some ways I am shocked and surprised,” Johnson said. “I know all the work that goes into it.  On that front, we work very hard to be competitive. But it still surprises me. When I look at the 99 [of Carl Edwards], the 18 [of Kyle Busch], different teams that have been very strong in certain years, then things kind of slow down for whatever reason, it’s really tough to tell why or what it is. Our guys work really hard. I can’t explain it. But I’m glad it’s working for us like this. We’ll just keep working hard and hopefully it will stick around.”

With his Indy win, Johnson moved up in the standings to second behind Stewart-Haas Racing’s Tony Stewart, who leads the standings by 192 points.

Johnson and his Chad Knaus-led team have gained consistency and momentum in recent weeks. Johnson has five consecutive top-10 finishes, seven in the last eight races and 15 overall.

His recent surge has revived championship talk about the team. Asked if he could win a fourth consecutive title, Johnson admitted that winning at Indy certainly helped to boost the team’s confidence with the with Chase just six races away.

“The victory this last weekend is helping that a lot,” Johnson said. “We’ve been so close to winning races, but there’s nothing better than pulling into victory lane and closing the deal.  I look at Michigan. I look at Pocono. I look at Sears Point. New Hampshire we led the most laps.  Just been a lot of races where we’ve been fast. I feel very good about what’s been going on.

“But to close the deal and to win a race just takes the confidence to the next level for the race team. It puts at ease some of the different emotions that exist inside everyone’s heads on our race team. We have a confidence and presence that we know we can do this.”

Still, he knows there’s a lot left this season. There are six more races before the Chase begins, then 10 through which the champion is determined.

Right now, though, Johnson is looking like one of the top contenders down the road.

“There’s still a lot of racing between now and the Chase and then when the Chase starts it’s a long 10 weeks,” he said. “I know we’ve got a lot of challenges ahead. But I feel very good about where we’re at. We’ll use the momentum from this win to get our heads right and be prepared for the Chase.”

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
Advertisements

Posted in Jimmie Johnson, Nascar | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Chase Spots Still Up For Grabs

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 31, 2009

As the cutoff to set the field for the Chase for the Sprint Cup nears, the pressure is ratcheting up on drivers and teams to crack the top 12.

Sunday’s Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway will be the 21st of 26 races in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup regular season, with the Chase participants locked in after race No. 26 at Richmond International Raceway in September.

Here’s how the top 12 breaks down heading into Pocono:

1. SURE THINGS — Barring a catastrophic collapse, Tony Stewart, Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon and Kurt Busch are all locks to make the Chase. Busch, the fourth-place driver in points, has a 247-point lead over 13th-place David Reutimann. For him to fall out of the Chase would probably require three to four DNFs over the next six races, and the odds of that happening are virtually nil.

And given that Stewart, Johnson and Gordon have even bigger cushions, the top four are in great shape to contend for the championship.

Busch said that he wants to concentrate on race victories over the final weeks of the regular season to try and amass bonus points for the Chase.

“What we’re hoping to do is have a big enough points buffer built on 13th after Watkins Glen (on Aug. 8th) that we can really go after the wins – and the important bonus points for the Chase – in those four races,” said Busch, driver of the No. 2 Penske Championship Racing Dodge Charger. “It would be a great position to be in, using fuel mileage and pit strategy – whatever it takes — in going after wins and bonus points.”

2. SOLID — Carl Edwards (195 points ahead of 13th place), Denny Hamlin (+157) and Ryan Newman (+145) are by no means locks for the Chase, but they are each in excellent position. Realistically, all they have to do over the final six races of NASCAR’s regular season is average finishes of 15th or better and they’ll probably be fine.

Newman said he knows it’s show time.

“I guess I kind of look at it as having two races that we are attacking right now, each weekend, as we get closer to the Chase,” said Newman, who is enjoying an excellent first season with Stewart-Haas Racing. “Our No. 1 goal is to win the race we are at that weekend. Our No. 2 goal is to put ourselves in the position to be in the top-12 so we can be in the Chase for the Championship. Hopefully, one of these will take care of the other, meaning that a win or even a good finish will bolster us in points and help us to solidify our position in the Chase for the Championship. In the end, our ultimate goal is to win the championship and you can only do that by being in the top-12 at the end of the first 26 races. So, that being said, we just have to stay focused on that and put ourselves in a position to capitalize on those last 10.”

3. UP FOR GRABS — Here’s where it gets interesting. Eighth-place Kasey Kahne is just 121 points ahead of 13th-place Reutimann. Behind Kahne are Mark Martin (+110), Juan Pablo Montoya(+100), Greg Biffle (+84), and Matt Kenseth (+68). None of these five drivers can afford any mistakes or DNFs over the next six races, but one or more probably will slip up.

“We’re still growing,” said Martin, who leads the Sprint Cup Series with four victories and finished second in last week’s Brickyard 400. “I feel more momentum now than I did in the first five races. I feel like we’ve really got some forward momentum in understanding what we need to do to get these cars from a top-10 team to a contender. It seems like we’ve been real successful at that over the past few weeks.”

4. KNOCKING ON THE DOOR — David Reutimann (13th place, -68 points from 12th) and Kyle Busch (-82) are outside the top 12 right now, but they still have plenty of time to make it back in. Both have won races this year, both have fast cars, but both have been erratic. Brian Vickers (-120) remains a decided long shot, though he still could make it if he gets hot.

Busch, who has had a hugely disappointing season despite three victories, said it’s time for change.

“For me, we need to try something different,” he said. “ … The bad races aren’t just bad, they’re horrible. Whether that’s my fault or not, you need a common denominator. There’s no common denominator as to why a bad day goes bad and gets worse. If it was me who kept my head in the game and stayed focused, which I feel like I’ve done, but maybe I give up a little bit and don’t tell my team exactly what we need on fixing the car.”

5. STICK A FORK IN ‘EM — Richard Childress Racing teammates Clint Bowyer (-151) and Jeff Burton (-228) both made the Chase in 2007 and ’08, with Burton also making it in ’06. But barring an incredible hot streak by Bowyer or a miracle by Burton, they will not make it this year. If either one of them finishes outside the top five at Pocono, you canconsider them out of the Chase for 2009.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Nascar | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Jimmie Johnson’s Record at Pocono

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 30, 2009

JJ Pocono

Johnson Finishes 7th in Pocono; Maintains 3rd in Point Standings

LONG POND, Penn. (June 7, 2009) —  Jimmie Johnson was slated to start third in Sunday’s Sprint Cup event at Pocono Raceway after Friday’s qualifying session was canceled due to rain.

But when pole-sitter and points-leader Tony Stewart wrecked his primary racecar in Saturday’s practice session, Johnson’s inside row moved up, allowing him to start from the top spot.

Johnson led 31 of the first 38 laps before falling victim to Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards. The Lowe’s Chevrolet continued to run in the top-five for the next 65 laps.

On Lap 104 of 200, as Johnson was entering pit road for a green-flag stop, the caution flag came out for debris. Johnson continued to his pit stall and took four tires and fuel but as a penalty for pitting too soon was forced to start at the tail end of the longest line when the green flag waved.
“It was an exciting race,” said Johnson. “We were in a great position and unfortunately, coming to pit road to pit and the caution came out and I couldn’t see a flagman or lights or anything. But luckily, we rebounded from that and had a great car and drove up to the top five.”

Johnson restarted 25th, but quickly drove through the field, reentering the top-10 by Lap 123 of 200.

By Lap 170, Johnson had moved to third-place, just 1.5-seconds behind leader Stewart. Biffle was running second. By Lap 190, most of the top five cars slowed their lap speeds in order to save fuel, including Stewart, second-place Edwards, and Johnson.

“At the end we were just playing a fuel game,” explained Johnson. “I didn’t play it well enough. I had to run too hard at the start of that run to stay ahead and I just used up too much gas and I ran out coming into the tunnel turn.”

On Lap 199 of 200, Johnson caught Edwards for second place, but ran out of fuel in Turn 3, dropping to the bottom of the track. Johnson coasted to the finish line and was credited with a seventh-place finish. Stewart won the race.

“I tried,” said Johnson “And it was funny. I was just kind of riding and wondering who was going to go and when because everybody was about half-throttle. I was trying to get to the end on gas and I thought Carl (Edwards) ran out on the front so I got in the gas and got by him and I went down through (Turn) one and came down the backstretch and I ran out. And I’m like, oh yeah. Figures. So it was one of those days. But a big congratulations to Tony Stewart and Stewart-Haas Racing. Those guys have been doing a great job.”

The result allowed the three-time Champion to maintain the third spot in the driver standings, 103 points behind leader Stewart. Jeff Gordon is still second, 71 points back. Ryan Newman and Kurt Busch round out the top-five.

The top five-finishers at Pocono were: Stewart, Edwards, David Reutimann, Gordon and Newman.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Jimmie Johnson, Nascar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Are Jimmie Johnson and Chad Knaus unbeatable?

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 29, 2009

Johnson 2009 winner of the Allstate Brickyard 400 at Indy

Johnson 2009 winner of the Allstate Brickyard 400 at Indy

Even the best drivers and team have their weaknesses.  Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt, and Bobby Allison all encountered off-seasons.  Jeff Gordon, Matt Kenseth, and Tony Stewart deal with struggles from time to time.  That does not seem to be the case with Jimmie Johnson and the 48 group.  Ever since Johnson’s rookie season in 2002 they have been as solid as any driver and team in recent history, as they own three titles and forty-three wins.

Johnson won his third Brickyard 400 on Sunday, as he continues to add to his legacy.  Over the past four years, a few drivers and teams have challenged Johnson and the 48 group.  Since 2006, Kevin Harvick, Matt Kenseth, Jeff Gordon, Carl Edwards, Kyle Busch, and Greg Biffle have posed threats to Johnson, but to no avail.  The No. 48 team continues to show no signs of passing the torch.

It appears as if the No. 48 bunch is immune to any valleys.  Most teams have their peaks and valleys.  Johnson is on a constant peak. Why does this seem to be the case?

Hardcore Jimmie Johnson fans staunchly agree that the driver makes the difference.  Others will contend that crew chief Chad Knaus is a mechanical mastermind, and his mind is gateway to Johnson’s ascendancy.  Most levelheaded observers agree that the combination of Johnson and Knaus is the reason for their recent dominance. Remember, prior to the 2002 season, Johnson and Knaus were relatively unknown to most NASCAR fans.

Johnson remains composed while enduring adversity.  He rarely loses his cool.  Many drivers lack this quality nowadays.  He provides adequate feedback as to the handling of the car.  On the rare occasion that he has an ill-handling car, instead of losing his head and trying to physically drive the car at an impracticable pace, he bides his time and relays to Knaus how the car is reacting to current track conditions.  That is when Knaus takes over.  He analyzes every angle and scenario, and eventually comes up with the perfect fix for an ill-handling car.

In most cases, opposing teams and drivers eventually figure out a balance, making some setups out of date.  Johnson and Knaus never settle for the same balance.  They constantly strive for a better feel for the car, even if they have an eight second lead on the competition.

As the Chase for the Championship approaches, it looks as if Jimmie Johnson is in prime position to earn an unprecedented fourth consecutive championship.  Of course, it is too early to crown him, but this is a typical Jimmie Johnson-type season.  Others take center stage throughout the regular season.  In 2007, it was Jeff Gordon.  Last year, it was Kyle Busch and Carl Edwards.  This year, it has been Tony Stewart and Mark Martin.  Once the Chase begins, it becomes the Jimmie Johnson show.

Who can dethrone the champ?  Tony Stewart seems to be the best choice.  Stewart, as well as Jeff Gordon, have displayed systematic consistency throughout the season.  Kurt Busch and Mark Martin could emerge as potential threats.  If Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch, and Carl Edwards qualify for the Chase, they are streaky drivers capable of surging that the perfect time.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Jimmie Johnson, Nascar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Did Jimmie deserve the win? Are you kidding me?

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 29, 2009

This is yet another idiotic blog I came across. Some people are so stupid I wonder how natural selection hasn’t already caught up to them. Well just keep loading my gun with ammo and I’ll keep shooting. Some people don’t know when to speak/write and when to shut up/ or not write and that makes them a fool. Let’s see how I punch or shoot holes into this ignorant individual.

Blogger’s rant I found their words:

He should’ve never won- and you know who I’m talking about: Jimmie Johnson. Had Juan never screwed up- he would’ve never won. Doesn’t it get old? Does NASCAR think it’s cute when he wins? I don’t. I personally think it’s annoying.

It’s recently become the Hendrick League with it constantly being Johnson- Martin and Gordon- Martin. I don’t care who wins as long as it’s not Johnson, Stewart, Martin or Kyle Busch. There are 39 other drivers out there who could win, but none of them have the dice to mix it up. I will admit, I was cheering on Martin to win but since Martin is a “gentleman’s racer” he doesn’t try anything. That didn’t stop him from wrecking Brad Keselowski in 2008 to win the Nationwide race in Vegas!
I agree with what Ryan Newman said though, “NASCAR doesn’t belong at Indy.”
If you look at all the Indy races, we’ve only had one feel good win and that was when Ricky Rudd won in his own car. Indy racing is boring and NASCAR has to do something there to spice things up.

My Answer

Before dealing with the Jimmie issue I would like to briefly address another issue here concerning the Martin comment. Hey MORON, you can not be known as a “gentleman racer” when you wreck another driver to win. That’s an oxymoron. You might want to recheck your facts by what it means to be a gentleman racer.

Now on to dealing with the Jimmie issue:

I’m tired of hearing people say poor Juan. Poor Juan – what is all of this nonsense – he got caught speeding in two segments on pit road. He’s not the only driver to ever be caught. Move on! It was his own fault. He wasn’t taken out by another driver nor had mechanical issues. He was the driver and he was speeding. No one is to blame but himself and personally I don’t feel sorry for him.

Jimmie deserved the win 100 percent; otherwise take away, Logano’s, Reutimman’s, and every single win where the driver who doesn’t lead the most laps. Your theory is that if you lead the most laps means you should get the win. Then once a driver clinches the most laps lead end the race! If the leader never made a mistake then there would be no need to finish the race. Park the cars and call it quits if you like, but Jimmie kissed the bricks. It’s not any different than trying to use pit strategy to get a win.

Jimmie started back in 16th, raced to the front and stayed there all day. Not much passing was going on for most of day but he was in position to make a move on the restart. Jimmie took the LEAD and KEPT the LEAD and WON the race. There were 42 other drivers that could have done the same thing. Absolutely he deserved to win. Juan made a mistake and it cost him the race, happens to all of them at one time or another.

Stay used to the 48 winning races and more championships in the near future.

It seems that some fans need a little cheese to go with the whining after Sundays race. JJ winning like that is no different than how some crews try and win with pit strategy.

No race is ever going to live up to every fans expectations. No winner is going to be everyones favorite driver. Nascar is made up of many different sides. Owners, drivers, cars, sponsors, tracks, pro-fans, con-fans, media and so on.

Get over it.

One final thought and perhaps you have forgotten this, whoever crosses the finish line first deserves the win. You can’t go on “ifs and maybe’s.”

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Jimmie Johnson, Nascar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Juan “Hot Sauce” Montoya vs. NASCAR and their Conspiracy

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 28, 2009

I have toured the comments sections of racing websites and I’m here to tell you many, many fans have gone Jim Garrison (if you don’t know the significance of this reference and or person Wikipedia him) over Sunday’s Brickyard race vis a vis Juan Pablo Montoya.

I have seen the idiotic blogs coming from the ill tempered NASCAR Fans, its range knows no bounds. Their saying NASCAR screwed the Colombian driver by slapping him with a late-race speeding penalty which probably cost him the victory.

I have seen/read everything from conspiracies to you guessed it racism and everything in between. So before I tear these apart and or debunk them I decided to take this one step further, let’s have some fun. Here is what really happened at the Allstate Brickyard 400.

My Conspiracy List

NASCAR favors any driver that is or was a champion; therefore all other drivers are not even qualified to run on the same track.

I watched as several cars were getting in the way of my driver, therefore NASCAR allowed them to try and deter my driver (Jimmie Johnson) from winning.

I also watched as each Driver that was announced shake the hand of the Sprint Girl, she was actually slipping them some magic beans that made Jimmie and his team win.

The flag man was holding way too many flags, and was waving them in an un-ordinary fashion, which created chaos with in the other teams, that did not win.

Someone slipped a mickey into Jr.‘s gas tank, which made his engine blow up.

All the fans actually had Mark Martin on a bungy cord which they only gave him just enough cord to almost win.

If Martin was still driving the Viagra car, he might have gotten his front end acrosss the line before Jimmie.

24+24 equals 48…that’s it! Johnson has two Jeff Gordon’s racing with him, Montoya had only two 21`s

NASCAR lowered the speed on pit row for Juan because he was too good.

Jr took a dive, blew his motor so that he could put oil on the track….which Juan picked up on his tires , thus preventing him from catching back up and winning instead of Jimmie, who just happens to be Jr’s team mate! JR probably got quite the little bonus for that “DIVERSION”

If you take the letters that spell INDIANAPOLIS you have: Indian OIL PS. And everybody knows that PS is short for Pit Strategy. The oil was at the entrance to pit road! See! See! I knew it! Way to go JR, you clever boy helping Jimmie win.

The announcers were in on it too; they had to have something to do with it. Rusty Wallace even said it was Jr’s oil on Juan’s tires! UH OH! Rusty almost blew it for Rick! Gees, Rusty hasn’t anybody told you loose lips sink ships, button it next time.

The most incredible part nobody caught was that IMS was set up with dual grandstands to confuse the young guns. They couldn’t find their pits or knew which way to turn.

FACT: anybody can make up incredible crap, I just did it. It doesn’t make it true. ALL YOU CONSPIRACY THEORY THINKING FANS….NO MORE SOUP FOR YOU!!!!

Now let’s get down to real business shall we and pick apart some items I will show that fans did write.

Here’s our first little gem from one fan: I hope NASCAR sale’s drop because they screwed Juan because if it’s not Jimmie or Jeff or JR in first then they make up there own rules just so one of them can win.

My Answer:

Where have you been all year? There have been other drivers other than Hendrick drivers to win in 2009. NASCAR has only let Jimmie, JR, or Jeff win races this year. What have you been watching, JR hasn’t even won a race this year, JR hasn’t even won a race since, oh never mind.

Let’s see the following drivers have won this year: Kevin Harvick, Jeff Gordon (2), Kyle Busch (4), Matt Kenseth (2), Kurt Busch, Brad Keselowski, David Reutimann, Joey Logano, Mark Martin (4), Kasey Kahne, Tony Stewart (2 + the All Star Race), Jimmie Johnson (3), and Sam Hornish Jr.

So my next question for you is, would you care to retract your statement? You really must not be too big of a Nascar fan to hope that sales drop. Come on, think about it.

Here’s our next little gem, concerning the speeding issue: NASCAR knew no one could catch JPM, so they black flagged him saying he was speeding. Juan was robbed. They don’t black flag other drivers. It’s a conspiracy. He even swore he didn’t on his wife and kids.

My Answer:

Guess what a cop can stop me on the road and say I was speeding, just because I swear on my mother, brother, sister, kids, wife, father, grandparents, my dogs, the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, the Pope, and the bible doesn’t mean I wasn’t speeding.

You’re right, it must be a conspiracy. Let’s get the x-files pair in here to investigate. Better yet let me help dawn light on marbled head.

Maybe you forgotten how Kyle Busch, Jimmie, Harvick, Burton, Bowyer have gotten penalties this year. Along with JR and Gordon, JR earned his share at Daytona. Even Carl Edwards, hell Carl got three; in one race and two of them were back to back – One penalty issued while serving the first penalty! All were penalized, or have you conveniently forgotten those?

NASCAR checked the system and he was speeding. JPM got caught speeding in 2 segments on pit road, so take your lumps like everyone else. It was his race to win or lose and unfortunately he lost. Has anyone read his interview in Scene magazine? He claims that he is a asshole and doesn’t care if the fans or anyone else likes him. Got to question his priorities and if he knows how he actually gets paid. No fans, no dollars. I have never really cared one way or the other about him, but his own comments just solidified my opinion. Sometimes it is better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.

Memo to JP: you have a 5MPH error-window… you need to fire whoever set your gear to be right-at the max-error. If you had your gear set to play by the rules and eat the second-extra that the error allowed for YOU STILL WOULD’VE HAD A 4-SECOND LEAD! Jesus your team was stupid still-maxing-out your pit-speed when you should’ve been dialed-in right-at the speed. Your team screwed you along with yourself!

One final thought before we move on. What happens to the wife an kids, since Montoya swore on them he was not speeding, maybe someone in the Latin nation could shed some light on what happens when you swear on your family and are wrong? Does he get a divorce and give the children up for adoption? I really want to know and I think we the NASCAR Nation are OWED an answer!

This next one really PISSES me off and burns my ASS!

Here’s the best gem out of all of the bullshit flying our there: I email Allstate about scam NASCAR pulled on them on Sunday and the fans….and so did a bunch of my NASCAR friends! Looks like Allstate 400 is no more; is pulling out! They have their reasons being political correct…lets see who the next suckers will be for their sponsorship will be? Maybe it was ESPN’s doing? Never heard the Allstate 400 once, does anyone remember what ESPN called it? When you steal a win from someone you better make sure your right. A lot of angry Latinos out there who saw the ugly side of NASCAR and so did Allstate Insurance! Good day Gil.

Good day indeed! This bastard out and out lied about the reason Allstate has decided not to sponsor this race any more. I have the real scoop which I have already posted, you can read it here:

Allstate not renewing Brickyard title sponsorship.

I encourage you to read that blog and find out the REAL reason and issue behind the decision. Now to tear this bastard a new asshole!

MY ANSWER!

So according to you Nascar or ESPN made up the fact that JPM was speeding. Are you saying NASCAR has to let Latino drivers speed on pit road? You need to get over it, he was speeding. Show me your evidence. Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch, Tony Stewart the list goes on and on were caught speeding earlier in the year so should all white people throw a fit because NASCAR is cheating against whites, or is it possible they both were speeding on pit road.

The thing with pit road speed limits is if the speed limit is 50 MPH drivers can go 54.9 MPH without getting in trouble, why did Juan even push the limit to begin with? He should have been going 52-53 and kept his 5 or so second lead, he made the mistake. Let’s not turn this into any racial thing. So quit playing your LATINO and or RACE card!

But, the verdict on NASCAR here is: Innocent on all counts.

Don’t like the fact well look at this.

I like the way crew chief Brian Pattie put it post race.

“It’s electronic,” Pattie said. “It’s not like there is a lot to discuss. It’s not like the old days where everybody is doing handheld (stopwatches). It’s black and white. It is what it is. They did their job. Now we go back and do ours.”

Pattie said that at some point, he will see the graphic proof of the infraction, but, he said he is pretty sure what he will see is Montoya speeding.

However I’m not done with Mr. Montoya just yet. You all want to chase shades, ghosts, and conspiracies but you’re avoiding the one solid, hard and true fact.

Juan Pablo Montoya’s Comment

Sunday during the race, JPM made a comment while serving his pass through penalty. He said, “If they do this to me, I am going to kill them.”

I was shocked, surprised, and appalled by him and that comment. I was also greatly concerned from everyone on pit road as he drove down its length, especially the officials that are down there. At that point I believe NASCAR should have red flagged the race until both he and his car were removed from the track. I think NASCAR should also fine him and the owner as well as suspend Montoya from the rest of this year’s series to include placing him on probation for the first four months of next year’s (2010) series.

If he made any kind of threatening comment to anyone during said time NASCAR would then ban him for life. I may sound harsh however I couldn’t care less how it sounds. Threatening to kill someone is a big time no-no, as well as against the law in every state, disgusting, and kids heard that, so what did those kids just learn, you tell me that?

I think I’m being soft, because as far as I’m now concerned Montoya is now nothing more than a terrorist driving an extremely fast and powerful machine ready to kill anyone for anything. I would have banned him for life right then and there if it had been my choice.

THAT’S A FACT & THE BOTTOM LINE!

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Nascar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

With another win at Indy, Jimmie Johnson and Rick Hendrick still revere track

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 28, 2009

Hendrick Motorsports' Jimmie Johnson (left) celebrates his win in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Allstate 400 with crew chief Chad Knaus (center) and team owner Rick Hendrick.

Hendrick Motorsports' Jimmie Johnson (left) celebrates his win in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Allstate 400 with crew chief Chad Knaus (center) and team owner Rick Hendrick.

Team owner Rick Hendrick still seems awed by Indianapolis Motor Speedway, despite the fact that he and his drivers have practically owned the place in recent years.

Sunday afternoon, Hendrick found himself celebrating his seventh win in the 16 races that have been held at the historic 2.5-mile oval. But in no way did he appear to be any less enamored with victories at the track. As Jimmie Johnson celebrated his second consecutive victory at the Brickyard – and his third in the last four races – Hendrick spoke glowingly of what victories at the track mean to a team.

“Any time you come to Indianapolis, it’s almost like sacred ground,” Hendrick said. “Reading about it and growing up in racing, [I] never thought I’d ever go to a race here, but [to] have an opportunity to win this thing, it’s just phenomenal. It doesn’t get any better than this.

“… I still get chill bumps when I walk out [of] Gasoline Alley and see all the people on both sides of the track.”

Johnson, too, respects the wins he has there. That’s one of his more charming assets, that ability to crush records but to hold them in reverence as he is doing so.

The same could be said of his racing at Indy.

Johnson has long been a power there, has become a perennial factor in races. But he still looks at each of those wins as special, still finds enthusiasm and excitement over the chance to race at the 100-year-old track.

“To be so close to the fans, the fact that I wanted to race here as a kid in the Indy 500, then to come back and now win here, it is the coolest, coolest feeling ever,” the California native said. “To ride around just the lap in that Corvette, all the crew guys were piled on it, that is one of the coolest moments to experience and just absorb the energy of this place, the history of this track. At that point you start thinking about what this place is and what’s gone on here.

“It means the world to me. The things as far as how I feel I fit in history, I’ve never been one to think I can put myself there. It’s something that comes from all of you down the road, as you get close to retirement. I got a lot of years left in me. Hopefully four-, five-, six-time race winner here would be awfully cool.”

Johnson’s win did more than move him up the winner’s list at the track.

It signaled that typical but dangerous rally this team generally makes at this time of year. One that has made it the three-time defending series champion.

Last season, Johnson won five races after his Indy victory. He finished in the top 10 in 12 of the remaining 16 races that season. Sunday’s victory vaulted him to second in the standings, 192 behind Stewart-Haas Racing co-owner/driver Tony Stewart. This season, Johnson hasn’t drawn his usual amount of attention, but he has steadily gained traction.

And now, he’s gearing up for a run at his fourth title.

“It has been quiet,” he said. “That is good because it allows us to focus and not get caught up in all the energy around winning races and leading the points. But we know it’s coming. We know the Chase [For The Sprint Cup] is coming up. Our guys are trying to treat each race leading into the Chase like we are in the Chase.

“We’re buckled down and ready. For whatever reason, that strategy or that style has been placed on this team, and it’s not that we try to do that; it’s just the way it works. We don’t know why.”

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Jimmie Johnson, Nascar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

JOHNSON STILL THE MAN TO BEAT!

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 28, 2009

Jimmie Johnson is gunning for his fourth consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup championship.

Jimmie Johnson is gunning for his fourth consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup championship.

Give Jimmie Johnson credit for honesty.

Asked if felt at all sorry for Juan Pablo Montoya, who dominated Sunday’s Allstate 400 at the Brickyard, but lost it on a late-race speeding penalty, Johnson showed a rare bit of candor and insight into a racer’s personality.

“No,” said the three-time defending NASCAR Sprint Cup champion, laughing audibly in the process. “We’re all so selfish. I could say if you want, I would have gone to Victory Lane to congratulate him. I would have been proud of him.”

And then he added, “I’m sure happy I got the trophy.”

Johnson passed his Hendrick Motorsports teammate Mark Martin on a late-race restart with 24 laps to go to take his first and only lead of the race, holding on to defeat Martin by 0.400 seconds. That gave Johnson his third Brickyard 400 victory in the last four years and made him the only driver to win it twice in a row.

The untold storyline, however, is it also was clear evidence that Johnson, crew chief Chad Knaus and the rest of the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team are ready to pursue a fourth consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup title, something no one has ever managed since the series began racing 60 years ago.

Quietly, Johnson has begun to round into championship form. In his last eight races, he’s earned two victories, four top-five and seven top-10 finishes. During that time he has led a total of 626 laps. The only race he didn’t finish in the top 10 came at Michigan International Speedway, where he led 146 of 200 laps, only to run out of gas on the last lap of the race.

Yes, Tony Stewart still leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup points standings with a margin of 192 points over Johnson. And Stewart’s third-place finish at the Brickyard shows he’s not going anywhere, but there’s no question that Johnson is rounding into title form.

And without doubt, Johnson has become a dominant closer, a clutch performer who finishes races the way John Elway used to finish football games for the Denver Broncos and Mariano Rivera picked up saves for the New York Yankees. Like Michael Jordan in the final minute of an NBA game, Johnson and Co. function at their absolute best when the race is on the line. Johnson showed that much when he out dueled Martin in the closing laps.

“It was cool to see,” Johnson said of the victory, his third of the season and 43rd of his career. “It’s what the 48 is known for. I’m glad we were able to win today because it gives us the confidence in our approach to the race, what we need to do coming up into the Chase (for the Sprint Cup). I feel very good about the way things are going and where we’re headed.”

The surprising part of all this, perhaps, is that more people aren’t talking about Johnson’s pursuit of history. Then again, that suits the El Cajon, Calif., native just fine.

“I mean, it has been quiet,” he said. “That is good because it allows us to focus and not get caught up in all the energy around winning races and leading the points. But we know it’s coming. We know the Chase is coming up. Our guys are trying to treat each race leading into the Chase like we are in the Chase.”

And for the last three seasons, the Chase has been the No. 48 team’s time to shine. Johnson thinks it could be again this year.

“We’re buckled down and ready,” he said. And after his Brickyard triumph, no one could doubt he means business.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Jimmie Johnson, Nascar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Is the 4-Peat Next?

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 27, 2009

If Jimmie Johnson wasn’t sending all of us a message before, he certainly has done so now. Many  have been touting Tony Stewart to be this year’s eventual champion, but with his victory at this year’s race at the Brickyard, Johnson has firmly reminded us who he is and what he is capable of.

As if we could forget.

Seven out of the fifteen previous races at Indy have been won by that year’s eventual champion. We all know this. Therefore, don’t be surprised when it happens again this year. Why? It’s not simply because he’s Jimmie Johnson, the reigning champion and the only one we’ve had for the past three years. No, it’s because this is one of Johnson’s best seasons to date, which is pretty damn scary if you ask me. Just take a look at his three previous championship seasons up to Indy in comparison to this season.

2006

Points Position: 1st
Poles: 1
Wins: 4
Top 5s: 8
Top 10s: 17
Avg. Start: 10.6
Avg. Finish: 7.9
Laps Lead: 363
DNFs: 0

2007

Points Position: 9th
Poles: 4
Wins: 4
Top 5s: 9
Top 10s: 11
Avg. Start: 13.4
Avg. Finish: 15.2
Laps Lead: 763
DNFs: 3

2008

Points Position: 4th
Poles: 6
Wins: 2
Top 5s: 6
Top 10s: 10
Avg. Start: 8.9
Avg. Finish: 13
Laps Lead: 763
DNFs: 1

2009

Points Position: 2nd
Poles: 0
Wins: 3
Top 5s: 9
Top 10s: 14
Avg. Start: 9.9
Avg. Finish: 10.9
Laps Lead: 969
DNFs: 1

As you can see, only 2006 was better, unless you are speaking in terms of Top 5s and laps led. That’s why, unless you’re a Jimmie Johnson fan, you should be really nervous. And if that doesn’t make you nervous enough, remember this: Johnson only gets better from here on out. Starting around August, Johnson and the rest of the 48 team pick up the pace and by October, there seems to be no stopping them. If Johnson’s past is anything to go by, then we should all prepare ourselves for more NASCAR history. Come Homestead, the 4-peat could very well be a reality.

You may start your gulping now.

Oh yeah, one more thing..

BE AFRAID! BE VERY, VERY AFRAID!

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Jimmie Johnson, Nascar, NASCAR History | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Brickyard History for Johnson

Posted by Digory Kirke on July 27, 2009

Brickyard History for Johnson

Johnson scored his 43rd career win.

Jimmie Johnson became the first driver to score back-to-back Allstate 400 at the Brickyard victories on Sunday when he held off Mark Martin for his third career win at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Johnson didn’t take the lead until lap 137, but stayed ahead of the field the rest of the way to notch his third win of the Sprint Cup Series season.

Johnson’s lead was inherited when disaster struck Juan Pablo Montoya, who dominated the race and led 116 laps nearly making history by becoming the first driver to win the Indianapolis 500 and Allstate 400 at The Brickyard.

But Montoya was caught speeding on pit road on lap 125 during what would have been his final regular stop of the day for fuel and tires, ending his quest to make the record books.

“If they do this to me, I’m going to kill them,” Montoya said on his radio. “There’s no way. I was on the green. Thank you NASCAR for screwing my day. We had it in the bag and they screwed us because I was not speeding. I swear on my children and my wife”

But NASCAR’s rule stood and Montoya was shuffled back to the 12th spot on the impending restart, out of contention for the win.

That left Johnson and Martin to fight for the victory at the front of the field. When the green flag flew, Johnson was able to nose his Lowe’s Chevrolet ahead of his Hendrick Motorsports teammate and despite a couple of runs in the final two laps from Martin was able to easily take the record-breaking checkered flag.

“That was unbelievable,” Johnson said. “I hope the fans enjoyed that race.”

Although Martin closed to within two-tenths of a second in the waning laps, he was unable to get alongside the race leader.

“For an old guy, he had me pretty worried,” Johnson joked. “Those last 15 or 20 laps, we had to drive so hard to stay ahead of him.”

Martin was shooting for his fifth win of the season but was forced to settle for the runnerup spot.

“He was better than I was off of 4, I was better than he was off 2,” Martin said. “I asked for a chance to be in the fray and [the team] gave me a chance. That’s all I asked for.”

Two-time race winner Tony Stewart was third with Greg Biffle and Brian Vickers rounding out the top five.

Kevin Harvick, Kasey Kahne, David Reutimann, Jeff Gordon and Matt Kenseth completed the first ten finishers.

It was a tough day for a group of drivers battling for a spot in the Chase. Denny Hamlin had a transmission issue early and was credited with an 34th place finish. Kurt Busch suffered a tire problem and limped home 27th.

And Kyle Busch suffered a cut tire to finish 38th, that dropped him to 14th in th standings with only six races to go to set the field.

The tire problems that plagued last year’s race were never a factor, as Goodyear made good on its promise to find the right compound for one of the biggest races of the season.

Goodyear tires last year couldn’t make it longer than 10-to-12 laps, and the tiremaker spent 11 months diligently correcting the problem, with drivers and teams giving the manufacturer high marks this weekend.

The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series now heads to Pocono Raceway on Sunday, August 2nd.

MY WORD: If Juan Pablo Montoya is going to make a comment like he did which is threatening towards the officials at NASCAR, I believe the sanctioning body of NASCAR ought to show Mr. Montoya the “door” (suspend) him for the rest of the season.

I don’t care how upset you are, who or whom or upset with, and or what driver it is and or you are there is no excuse for making threats like that. Montoya would not only be out of the rest of this season if it were up to me, but he’d be paying a fine that was so steep and or heavy he’d still be paying it by the begining of the 2010 season.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Posted in Jimmie Johnson, Nascar, NASCAR History | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »