Clint Bowyer, Blake Feese , Kyle Busch, James Buescher and Ryan Newman comment on their Atlanta finishes.
Rookie Blake Feese gets loose in front of new points leader James Buescher and brings out the caution.
Driver will have new number for 2015 XFINITY Series season TriStar Motorsports announced Wednesday that Blake Koch will return to the Mark Smith-owned team in the NASCAR XFINITY Series in 2015. Koch is scheduled to drive all 33 races, but in Toyotas fielding a new car number -- No. 8. The 29-year-old Floridian, who has competed in the majority of XFINITY Series events for the last four seasons, drove cars numbered 10, 44, 23 and 91 over a 28-race slate last year. "After a good 2014 season, I am excited to be back with TriStar Motorsports for the 2015 season," Koch said in a news release provided by the team. "I am looking forward to working with Bruce Cook and the No. 8 crew and can't wait to get to Daytona." Koch wound up 24th in the final 2014 standings with a best finish of 18th place at Phoenix International Raceway in November. His top result in 114 career starts in the XFINITY Series was an 11th-place in the 2013 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway . "We are happy to have Blake Koch back with our team for the 2015 season," Smith said. " Blake did well with our team last season and we look forward to building on that success throughout the 2015 season." Last year, Cook served as the crew chief for nine races with the No. 80 team in the XFINITY Series. In those races, he served as the crew chief for Alex Bowman (one race), Ross Chastain (five races) and Johnny Sauter (three races) in 2014. Before that, Cook served as the crew chief for Ron Hornaday Jr . in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series for the 2013 season. He has one victory in his career in XFINITY competition, overseeing Tony Stewart 's win in the 2011 season opener at Daytona International Speedway in what was then called the Nationwide Series. The Mooresville, North Carolina-based organization indicated that sponsorship announcements for the No. 8 team would be made "in the upcoming weeks." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Blake Shelton gives a touching speech as he introduces and offically inducts Dale Jarrett into the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
GarageCam host Matthew Dillner gives you behind the scenes access to not only the NASCAR XFINITY Series but also the Camping World Truck Series in this edition of NXS GarageCam.
Eric Church, Blake Shelton, Toby Keith, Kid Rock, Hank Williams, Jr., Billy Currington, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Lee Brice, Martina McBride, Gary Allan, Tyler Farr and Many More at First-Ever Dega Jam Music Festival at Talladega Superspeedway , July 1-3, 2016 Tickets, VIP Packages and Travel Packages on Sale Now Early-Bird Pricing for 3-Day Passes Available for a Limited Time (Talladega, Ala.) - October 25, 2015 – Dega Jam , the first-ever country music festival held at Talladega Superspeedway , announced a monster lineup for the first-time event. Eric Church, Blake Shelton, Toby Keith, Kid Rock, Hank Williams, Jr., Billy Currington, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Lee Brice, Martina McBride, Gary Allan, Kip Moore, Tyler Farr and dozens more will keep the party rocking over Fourth of July weekend, July 1, 2 & 3, 2016 at the famed Talladega Superspeedway . Dega Jam, which will take place in the infield of the biggest NASCAR track in the country, will feature a huge music lineup over three days and nights, programmed on three specially designed performance stages. The mega-music festival will offer fans a thrilling new annual way to celebrate the Fourth of July holiday weekend. General Admission 3-day passes, VIP packages and travel packages are all on sale now. Early-bird pricing for weekend passes is available for a limited time. Camping opportunities will be available for purchase starting October 29. Visit DegaJam.com for all festival information, including participating hotels. The full 2016 Dega Jam lineup includes: Eric Church, Blake Shelton, Toby Keith, Kid Rock, Hank Williams, Jr., Billy Currington, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Lee Brice, Martina McBride, Gary Allan, Kip Moore, Tyler Farr, Chase Rice, Chris Janson, Dwight Yoakam, Frankie Ballard, Jamey Johnson, Easton Corbin, Jerrod Niemann, Sara Evans, The Time Jumpers featuring Vince Gill, Kenny Sears, and Ranger Doug Green, Montgomery Gentry, Marty Stuart, Eli Young Band, Colt Ford, Brothers Osborne, Brandy Clark, Clare Dunn, John Anderson, Kristian Bush, The Cadillac Three, Aaron Lewis, Pat Green, Josh Thompson, RaeLynn, Mac Powell, Rodney Atkins, Cassadee Pope, Shooter Jennings The Swon Brothers, Mo Pitney, Frank Foster, Whiskey Myers, and Ruthie Collins. Quint Davis, producer/director said, “Dega Jam is coming to join the thunder that rocks Talladega Superspeedway . From the opening night strains of ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ by Lynyrd Skynyrd to Eric Church and his mega-hit ‘Talladega’ on Saturday night, to taking it home with Kid Rock’s ‘Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long,’ the Dega Jam will live up to its namesake. A country festival like no other, Dega Jam headlines Eric Church, Blake Shelton, Toby Keith, Kid Rock, Hank Williams, Jr., and 40 more stars from all branches of country music. In the infield of the Superspeedway, on three stages for three days, country music will be celebrated from modern superstar Martina McBride, to legendary rocker Dwight Yoakam, and everything in between, including Lee Brice, Billy Currington, Gary Allan, Montgomery Gentry, Tyler Farr, native Alabamians Sara Evans and Jamey Johnson. Even Country Music Hall of Famer Vince Gill brings his Time Jumpers to the party. And a party it will be; for sure there is something for everyone. All tickets go on sale today. Be one of the lucky few that get to actually camp out in the infield, inside the Festival itself, where the party really never stops. Hey, it’s not just a music Festival, it’s Talladega!” “Being the biggest race track in NASCAR and having nearly 3,000 acres of unlimited camping opportunities, Dega Jam is uniquely positioned to become one of the – if not the – biggest country music festival in the country,” said Grant Lynch, Chairman of Talladega Superspeedway . “More than 70 percent of our NASCAR customers come from outside of the state, generating more than $380 million annually for Alabama tourism, and we expect Dega Jam to add significantly to this economic impact. When these fans make their journey to Dega Jam, they will find that ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ has lots more to offer, too. From delicious food delicacies to incredible road-trip destinations, Alabama has it all. We can’t wait for July 2016.” Just as it is for the races at Talladega, Dega Jam will allow fans to camp in the infield, literally inside the festival. A full-range of camping opportunities is available for virtually any budget, from pitching a tent to deluxe RV locations adjacent to the stages. Special VIP packages – the “Crew Chief VIP Experience” and “VIP Pit Pass” - will allow for a variety of special privileges, depending upon which package is selected: an exclusive upfront, golden-circle viewing area at the main stage and with VIP viewing at the other stages; access to the White Lightning VIP Club offering a comfortable hospitality tent and private cash bar; and other comforts and amenities. VIP packages will be available in limited quantities. Fans at the festival will also have the opportunity to get up close and personal with some of their favorite country stars at artist meet-and-greets located throughout pit road and inside NASCAR garages. Numerous other features—a select festival menu sold from food booths and food trucks; carnival rides; arcade games; country-and-western merchandise; cool zone water elements; and more—will all be a part of the festival, as Dega Jam transforms Talladega Superspeedway into a festival-goer’s paradise. Be part of the Dega Jam community at any of the following: DegaJam.com DegaJam on Facebook @degajam on Twitter degajam on Instagram AEG Live along with Festival Productions, Inc. – New Orleans are partnering with the International Speedway Corporation (ISC) to produce the Dega Jam . PLEASE NOTE: Artist b-roll video is available at https://vimeo.com/141839637 . Festival Contact: Matthew Goldman, 504-410-4100, Matthew@fpi-no.com Talladega Contact: Russell Branham, 256-315-4556, Rbranham@talladegasuperspeedway.com ### DEGA JAM WEEKEND FESTIVAL PASSES 3-DAY GENERAL ADMISSION WEEKEND PASS – ($179 early bird all-in pricing) • 3-day general admission; passes are non-transferable • Includes access to over 40 bands on three festival stages, a select menu of food and beverage offerings available for purchase from food booths and food trucks, carnival rides, arcade games, country and western merchandise, official festival merchandise, a myriad of shade and water elements and much more VIP PIT PASS - ($599 all-in pricing) • 3-day admission; passes are non-transferable • Access to the Pit, an exclusive upfront, golden circle viewing area at the Dega Jam Stage and VIP viewing at the Sweet Home Dega Stage and Honky Tonk Hall • Access to the White Lightning VIP Club, a private hospitality tent where guests can cool of in the shade with access to exclusive beverage for purchase, private merchandise stand, cell phone charging stations and more • Private air-conditioned flushable restrooms • Exclusive festival merchandise item • Express VIP entrance with re-entry all weekend • Exclusive opportunity to purchase a VIP parking space • On-site experience concierge CREW CHIEF VIP EXPERIENCE – ($999 all-in pricing) • 3-day admission; non-transferable • Access to the Pit, an exclusive upfront, golden circle viewing area at the Dega Jam Stage and VIP viewing at the Sweet Home Dega Stage and Honky Tonk Hall • Exclusive access to the Crew Chief Super VIP Deck at the Dega Jam Stage featuring a covered viewing platform with premium views of the main stage, open bar featuring select wine, beer and spirits, complimentary light snacks and refreshments, and air-conditioned restrooms • Crew Chief VIP-only exclusive festival merchandise items • Access to the White Lightning VIP Club, a private hospitality tent where guests can cool of in the shade with access to exclusive beverage for purchase, private merchandise stand, cell phone charging stations and more • Crew Chief VIP only festival merchandise item • Express VIP entrance with re-entry all weekend • Exclusive opportunity to purchase a VIP parking space • On-site experience concierge Plus a few surprises!
TALLADEGA, Ala. -- Country music superstars Eric Church, Blake Shelton, Toby Keith and Kid Rock will headline the first annual Dega Jam music festival, officials announced in a press conference Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway . The festival will take place at Talladega July 1-3, 2016. "We've heard that Talladega Superspeedway is the biggest and baddest track of them all," said Quint Davis, producer/director of Dega Jam. "If we're going to come here with a country music festival, it better be the biggest and the baddest of them all." In addition to the headliners, the extensive festival lineup features 45 groups and artists. There will be 15 bands on three stages per day during the weekend, with Hank Williams Jr., Lynyrd Skynyrd, Billy Currington, Lee Brice, Martina McBride and Sara Evans also among playing. "If you think about that line-up, and you're picking a place in the southeastern United States that could host a whole bunch of people, and there just happened to be a little short track down in Alabama that’s got about 2,700 acres of useable land … we can handle bigger crowds than probably any other facility because we have all that land," said Grant Lynch, chairman of Talladega Superspeedway . "Virtually, we have unlimited camping, that's going to be a big part of this festival." "… I think it's a perfect fit for a race track to serve in this role. Quint and his team are going to be the best partners we could have reached out to." Tickets and VIP packages are available for purchase now, with early-bird weekend passes offered for a limited time. Visit DegaJam.com to purchase tickets, view the full line-up and learn more about the weekend.
Presenting NASCAR content from around the web Editor's note: On Wednesday at noon ET, "High 5" will present some of the best NASCAR-related content from around the web. 1. Junior vs. J-Mac Both Dale Earnhardt Jr . and Jamie McMurray 's paint schemes at Kansas Speedway paid homage to the new "Halo 5: Guardians" video game. Both schemes were awesome, but when it came down to actually playing the game, who prevailed? The duo decided to find out, grabbing three members of their teams for a face-off. Let the games begin! #HUNTthe88 pic.twitter.com/nIJNzPVN7w — Hendrick Motorsports (@TeamHendrick) October 16, 2015 J-Mac's video game practice time with his son Carter allowed him to beat Junior. But Earnhardt may have been a tad distracted from the ultimate task at hand. "I was running around trying to figure out where I was at the whole time," Earnhardt Jr. told FOX Sports. "The maps are all pretty detailed, and there's some advantages, and there were guys doing things that I didn't know how to do." Maybe not the best strategy to have during a race, Dale. Make sure you figure out what you're doing before you hit the track this weekend at Talladega. Read the entire story from FOX Sports here . 2. Big Blue's big mishap Just about everybody was talking about the wild ending to college football's Michigan – Michigan State game on Saturday night. Up by two points, Michigan's punter Blake O'Neill botched a snap with 10 seconds left in the game. Michigan State safety Jalen Watts-Jackson scooped up the ball and ran it in the end zone for a stunning touchdown. To make this situation all the more insane, Watts-Jackson broke his hip in the process. College football, man. One person (or two people, rather) weren't too happy about the newest play of the year. Before and after that last Michigan play- pic.twitter.com/F5YwY4Hzr0 — Brad Keselowski (@keselowski) October 17, 2015 But it's not the first time something that wild has happened in sports. Remember this? Tough break, Mark. RELATED: Wild and crazy NASCAR finishes 3. Labonte's legacy "Texas" Terry Labonte . A racer, an ironman and soon, a Hall of Famer. Native to Corpus Christi, Texas, Labonte is set to be inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in January, becoming the first native Texan to hold a place in the Hall. In a recent article from The Dallas Star-Telegram, the two-time Cup Series champion reflects on his career, memorable moments and why he and Dale Earnhardt didn't go hunting together in 1999. Click here to read the entire piece. 4. Intergalactic boom The force certainly awakened households across the world on Monday, when ESPN premiered the trailer for Disney's new "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" trailer during halftime of Monday Night Football. The Force. It’s calling to you. Tickets on sale now: https://t.co/PwNxYwmCEe #TheForceAwakens https://t.co/UxAgY5MejQ — Star Wars (@starwars) October 20, 2015 According to a report from CNN, the trailer was viewed more than 10 million times in just 15 hours. WHOA. With all this Star Wars hype, we think that NASCAR should bring back this car. Come on, Jeff! 5. Prince George 'speaks' Forget the royal treatment – Prince George is getting the Bridget Jones treatment! The UK's most celebrated toddler will be the star of British author Clare Bennett's newest book "The Prince George Diaries," which will tell the "stories" of the royal two-year-old. We know another tot who deserves his own book – or TV show for that matter. I mean, he already has his own Twitter handle .
Photo credit: @CLTMotorSpdwy RELATED: Photos of the Better Half Dash participants CONCORD, N.C. -- It was the NASCAR wives' and girlfriends' time to shine on the track in Thursday's fifth annual Better Half Dash, organized by Motor Racing Outreach at Charlotte Motor Speedway . Shannon Koch, the wife of NASCAR XFINITY Series driver, Blake Koch , took the checkered flag. She overcame some early-race trouble when the back body panel of her No. 8 machine was blown off by the wind. "I really didn't know that I lost part of my car until I came back around and they were picking it up off the track," Shannon Koch said after the race. "My husband just said, 'keep going, they didn't black flag you yet.' " Congratulations Shannon Koch! @CLTMotorSpdwy : Shannon Koch wins #BetterHalfDash ! pic.twitter.com/utaZBrZH2u http://t.co/A8pZxzvjsB — NASCAR Off Track (@OffTrackNASCAR) October 8, 2015 When asked whether that gave her an aerodynamic advantage, Shannon Koch said, "I don't know, maybe it did. Did lap times pick up? I have no idea. It didn't feel any different to me." To which second-place finisher Katelyn Sweet, girlfriend of Kyle Larson , quickly said to a loud round of laughter, "Your motor got way more air." No word on whether the car passed post-race inspection. Shannon Koch wins the #BetterHalfDash at @CLTMotorSpdwy pic.twitter.com/dbjY7tmYkm — Pete McCole (@PeteMcCole) October 8, 2015 The race benefits MRO and Speedway Children's Charities as well as each participant's individual charity. Koch's $10,000 winnings went to MRO, which was the charity she was representing. The participants raised $75,000, according to MRO and track officials With the win comes a really big trophy for Koch. She described it as "definitely the biggest that we have. It will go right up there with the rest of them." And Koch is also going out on top, saying in the post-race press conference, "I'm retiring." NASCAR Sprint Cup Series regulars Larson and Denny Hamlin were among the spotters for their respective significant others, Sweet and Jordan Fish. NASCAR Sprint Cup regulars Danica Patrick and Ricky Stenhouse Jr . were among those to check out the action as well. Sweet led several laps in the event and overcame an early spin out to finish second. Tandra Greenfield, the wife of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Clay Greenfield , finished third. Greenfield is eager to come back next year. "It was fun to compete with them because they were so aggressive and competitive," she said. Wendy Venturini, a NASCAR reporter and wife of Jarrad Egert, director of track operations for Joe Gibbs Racing , was not able to pull off the MRO event sweep after taking the High Heel Dash in May. Over the past few weeks, there have been practice sessions leading up to the race, all while the competitors were busy raising money prior to the event. As in years past, the participant to raise the most money earned the opportunity to select their starting spot for the race. Koch earned the pole honor. The results: 1. Shannon Koch (wife of driver Blake Koch ) 2. Katelyn Sweet (girlfriend of driver Kyle Larson ) 3. Tandra Greenfield (wife of driver Clay Greenfield ) 4. Jordan Fish (girlfriend of driver Denny Hamlin ) 5. Kristen Yeley (wife of driver J.J. Yeley) 6. Tatiana Papis (wife of driver Max Papis ) 7. Ashley Deihl Stremme (wife of driver David Stremme ) 8. Melanie Self (Motor Racing Outreach Community Center Coordinator) 9. Jenna Robinson (wife of No. 19 tire changer Clay Robinson) 10. Whitney Kay Scott (wife of driver Brian Scott ) 11. Wendy Venturini (NASCAR reporter, wife of JGR director of track operations Jarrad Egert)
ELKHART LAKE, Wis. -- Blake Koch spent a lengthy caution period Saturday afternoon performing the customary practice of saving fuel, shutting his No. 8 car off and on to conserve precious drops. What wasn't customary was his late-race view, up front and with only the pace car in sight. That's why the heartache was especially difficult to take Saturday at Road America , when his TriStar Motorsports entry lost power while leading with five laps remaining in the Road America 180 Fired Up by Johnsonville. With it went his hopes for an upset NASCAR XFINITY Series victory, a breakthrough five years in the making. "It just … nothing. Dead. Totally dead," Koch said, managing a sheepish smile while describing the helplessness of coasting to a stop, relinquishing his position during the final yellow flag. "No voltage, no power, no lights, no nothing. I got pushed all the way around the track to pit road and they reconnected the battery. They got me back out there on the lead lap to salvage a 21st-place finish, but that's where we always finish. We were looking for something better." Koch had worked his way to the front under green-flag conditions, his team working a fuel strategy ploy to near-perfection in the final road-course race of the season. When the final yellow flew for pole-starter Ben Rhodes ' crash, the 30-year-old driver was in prime position, ready to restart alongside eventual race winner Paul Menard , who was in an even more aggressive fuel-saving mode. Besides his flirtation with Victory Lane, Koch had extra motivation to perform well in front of representatives attending from the nearby Milwaukee office for his sponsor, LeafFilter. "For them to see their car leading, it had to have been awesome and that's what I was thinking about," Koch said. "I'd love to win this race for them, and we were in position to give it our best shot. If the thing had kept going green, we had enough fuel. We saved early enough to where when we needed to run hard, we could've run hard. Unfortunately that caution came out and we were just saving, saving, saving, and then one time the car just wouldn't start back up. "Battery came disconnected and the rest is history. I was going to give it my best shot there, restarting in the lead next to the 33 (Menard) and we would've seen what happened." Besides the exposure and the potential for a feel-good underdog story, Koch said plenty of positives stood out. He led five laps, two more than he had cumulatively led in his previous 136 XFINITY Series starts. "The guys will learn and you lose as a team, you win as a team," Koch said, "and it'll just make winning that first race that much better when you remember times like today."