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NXS Garagecam hits the Monster Mile at Dover
Host Matthew Dillner takes you through the NASCAR XFINITY Series garage at Dover International Speedway as drivers prepare for the second race in the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase.
Earnhardt Jr. to make football picks at Bristol
Dale Earnhardt Jr . will return to Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend, but not in the manner one might expect. The Hendrick Motorsports driver will serve as the guest picker on ESPN's "College GameDay" football show Saturday morning, which is being broadcast in advance of Saturday night's "Battle at Bristol" college football game between the University of Tennessee and Virginia Tech. Prior to the day's games kicking off at noon ET, Earnhardt Jr. will join hosts Rece Davis , Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso and others for a roundtable prediction of the day's big games. "The Battle at Bristol is something we've been anticipating for a long time, and I'm fortunate to be invited by Goodyear to participate in ESPN's College GameDay broadcast," Earnhardt Jr. said. "I'm sure it will be a crazy college atmosphere, especially around the GameDay set, and I look forward to having this new experience at a familiar place." Hendrick Motorsports announced last week that Earnhardt would miss the rest of the 2016 season as he recovers from the effects of a concussion. This is perfect timing for NASCAR fans -- watch Junior in the morning, then catch the final regular-season race at Richmond International Raceway later that evening (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
Dillon weaves through chaos
Ty Dillon makes veteran-like moves to stay out of a big crash late.
'Humbled' Sadler puts team, sponsor limbo behind him
RELATED: OneMain extends pact with JRM, Sadler ELKHART LAKE, Wis. -- In the span of less than two months, NASCAR XFINITY Series points leader Elliott Sadler had a secure ride and sponsor, lost a secure ride and sponsor then gained a secure ride and sponsor, all with the same team … and sponsor. Dizzy? Don't blame you. OneMain Financial had sponsored the NASCAR veteran for several years, following him from team to team, but informed Sadler and JR Motorsports earlier this summer that after an executive shakeup following a merger with Springleaf Holdings that they would be exiting the sport at the conclusion of the 2016 season. The news was shocking, given their status as the longest-running XFINITY Series primary sponsor and Sadler being on pace for his most successful campaign since he started racing in the series full-time in 2011. It was equally as stunning when JRM General Manager Kelley Earnhardt Miller announced a multiyear extension with OneMain and Sadler on Wednesday, a complete 180 from where things were headed. "We were ecstatic when we found out that they had come back and had started talking to Kelley and Dale (Earnhardt Jr., JRM owner) to maybe further this relationship," Sadler told NASCAR.com Friday at Road America , site of Saturday's Road America 180 Fired Up by Johnsonville (2 p.m. ET, NBCSN/NBC Sports App). " … This all came together really quick and really late, like just here in the past couple days. It's neat how it's all come together pretty fast. " … I was proud when I found out that they were deciding to come back and they really wanted me to be their spokesperson and their head guy for racing. Man, I'm humbled by that. OneMain's a great sponsor. I've been with them over a decade. All that put together, I'm humbled that they still want me to be a part of their brand and still be a part of their company. I think definitely it's a no-brainer to be a part of JR Motorsports in this particular division." While Wednesday's announcement was a welcome sight for the industry -- nobody likes to see a sponsor leave the sport, let alone one with such a long-standing, visible relationship with a single driver -- it was certainly an unprecedented head-scratcher. What, exactly, had happened in the past month-plus to have OneMain change their minds? "One thing I've learned, and the most important thing I've learned, is in a merger, there's a lot going on, man," Sadler said. "There's only so many hours in a day and there's only so many things that you can look at; charts and stats and information. I think once they got all the merger stuff straight and they could really take a good, deep look into the racing program, into NASCAR, into the demographics between their customers and NASCAR, I think they really started to kind of see that 'Hey, this is maybe … this looks pretty good.' "NASCAR is a pretty wide sport. I think they learned they had customers in California that were race fans, they had customers in Michigan and Pennsylvania and Texas and Florida and everywhere in between and it's going to be, 'Wow, maybe this is a direct correlation between the two. We might need to look at this.' " Being the points leader, a favorite in the first-ever XFINITY Series Chase and an employee of NASCAR's most popular driver definitely wasn't a hindrance, either. RELATED: Series Chase Grid "I think it doesn't hurt the way we're running. I think that's a big part of it. It 100 percent doesn't hurt to be associated with JR Motorsports and Junior Nation. Kelley and Dale and (JRM Brand Director & Communications) Mike Davis and their staff; what they do in digital consumption and stuff off the track … there's no other team even close in the garage. I think once you throw all that together and seeing the response and the people you're reaching is why the reconsideration was done and why they decided to stay here for a couple more years." Had this all not come together, however, Sadler indicated that in terms of a backup plan, he "never really messed with (looking at) other options." In fact, retirement was starting to creep into the 41-year-old's thoughts, ever so slightly. "I just kind of was looking at … 'This might be it.' I didn't know, but I didn't want to take away from what we were doing here. It's the best chance I've had in a long time to make a great run to Homestead. We're leading in the points and we're running good and we've got a good string of finishes going and we've been fast every week. I didn't want to … you can only control what you can control. I've been a part of the sport long enough that I didn't want to go off and start fishing and doing other things and taking away from what my job is, and that's showing up prepared every week. I'm not going to tell you that it hasn't been hard. The last month and a half, I haven't slept much, I'll be honest with you. It's been tough and priorities have been shifted some and wondering what's going to happen.” Sleep should come a bit easier now for the veteran, at least until the Chase starts at Kentucky later this year. Gratitude does, as well. " … For all of that to come together and be able to be the lucky one to stand here and talk to you about it … " said Sadler, " … it's pretty humbling and I'm pretty thankful to have that opportunity."
NXS GarageCam airs it out in the Windy City
Host Matthew Dillner talks with several drivers as he takes you through the NASCAR XFINITY Series garage at Chicagoland Speedway.
NASCAR.com does the 22 Pushup Challenge
In response to JR Motorsports, the digital team at NASCAR.com does the '22 Pushup Challenge'.
Junior: Jimmie wanted to wear dad's fire suit
RELATED: Instagram post causes PR freak-out Dale Earnhardt Jr . said Monday that Jimmie Johnson had asked him to borrow one of his father's old uniforms to complete his retro look for this weekend's NASCAR throwback weekend at Darlington Raceway . Earnhardt Jr.'s remarks came on Monday's edition of the "Dale Jr. Download," a 70-minute episode that he co-hosted on his Dirty Mo Radio network. Earnhardt did not provide a health update on the concussion-related symptoms that have forced him to miss the last six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, but offered an anecdote about his Hendrick Motorsports teammate, who will be running a blue-and-yellow paint scheme on his No. 48 Chevrolet that pays tribute to Earnhardt's father and the legendary David Pearson -- both NASCAR Hall of Famers. "He's texting me, he's like, 'You got one of your dad's old uniforms and all that stuff?' " Earnhardt said of a recent exchange with Johnson. "He wanted to actually wear it to intros, and it would fit probably. It smells like … every bit of 40 years old." Earnhardt Jr. clarified that Johnson had asked about a different uniform than the one from the 1982 season that he recently modeled on social media. He also had to clarify for Johnson the level of Lowe's involvement with stock-car racing back in 1979, the elder Earnhardt's rookie season. "He sends me a picture of this car, and I said 'David Pearson ran second in that car at Talladega in relief for my father,' " Earnhardt Jr. said. "My father was out four weeks with broken collarbones (from a crash at Pocono), and David drove that car, ran second. That was the only race Lowe's was on the hood. I don't know why. Must've been a local chain, but they had Lowe's on the hood for that race, and that race only. "And so, it's kind of unique, kind of weird. Jimmie gets excited about it and then I have to tell him the story. He's like, 'Man, I'm going to run one of your Dad's throwbacks,' and I'm like, 'Well, David Pearson drove that car and Lowe's was on the hood for just that race,' but it's still really cool. I've always wondered what that paint scheme would look like on one of the modern cars." Earnhardt will be replaced by interim driver Jeff Gordon in this Sunday's Bojangles' Southern 500 (6 p.m. ET, NBC/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM) as his recovery from concussion-related issues continues. Earnhardt said he was "real sad" he won't be driving his own throwback paint scheme, a No. 88 Chevrolet that pays homage to Buddy Baker's "Gray Ghost" look from the early 1980s. Alex Bowman made his second substitute start last weekend at Michigan International Speedway , placing 30th after slowing early with engine trouble. Still, Earnhardt Jr. gave him a vote of confidence. "That was disappointing. I know Alex was upset," Earnhardt Jr. said. "He doesn't know how many opportunities like that he'll get to show he's capable. I believe in him, and I know he's got the ability to do it, to be in the Cup Series and to be in a competitive car and do a good job behind the wheel. It was a shame because I think he could've shown again -- like he did at New Hampshire -- that he belongs." Though Earnhardt Jr. will sit out Sunday's event at Darlington, co-host Mike Davis -- brand and communications director for Earnhardt and his JR Motorsports team -- teed up what's scheduled to be a busy week for the 41-year-old driver. Earnhardt Jr. is scheduled to participate in competition meetings Tuesday, before traveling to a Wal-Mart in Lewistown, Pennsylvania, for a Wednesday driver appearance. Wednesday's schedule also includes an interview on Nickelodeon's "NASCAR Hammer Down" program, hosted by Karsyn Elledge, Earnhardt Jr.'s niece. Earnhardt's JR Motorsports organization in the NASCAR XFINITY Series also has a busy week on tap. Davis said JRM planned to unveil nostalgic paint schemes for its three Darlington entries, which will be piloted by XFINITY regulars Justin Allgaier and Elliott Sadler , plus Sprint Cup star Kevin Harvick . &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Sherry Pollex announces she's a two-year cancer survivor
RELATED: Truex, Pollex shed tears of joy after huge Charlotte win Sherry Pollex announced Monday evening that she's reached the two-year mark in her recovery from ovarian cancer. Today I'm officially a 2 year cancer survivor. This was my view today at lunch. I'm feeling so blessed. pic.twitter.com/GmQu1Kikab — Sherry Pollex (@SherryPollex) August 15, 2016 @SherryPollex Best tweet I've seen all day. You rock. — Mike Davis (@MikeDavis88) August 16, 2016 Heck yeah! Congrats from all your friends up here @poconoraceway https://t.co/KrYEAGNUdq — Brandon Igdalsky (@bigdalsky) August 16, 2016 Pollex and longtime boyfriend Martin Truex Jr . were the focus of one of the best moments of the 2016 in May, when the duo shared an emotional Victory Lane at Charlotte Motor Speedway after the Sprint Cup Series driver walloped the Coca-Cola 600 field, leading 392 of 400 laps for the win. MORE: Truex, Pollex host 'Catwalk for a Cause' for seventh year
Benny Phillips named sixth Squier-Hall award winner
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 2, 2016) – NASCAR and the NASCAR Hall of Fame today announced longtime High Point (N.C.) Enterprise reporter and sports editor Benny Phillips as the sixth recipient of the Squier-Hall Award for NASCAR Media Excellence. Phillips spent 48 years with the Enterprise, serving as its sports editor for 32 of them. He will be honored during NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony festivities on Jan. 20, 2017 and featured in an exhibit in the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina. In addition to his time at the Enterprise, Phillips wrote for Stock Car Racing magazine for 27 years and spent 12 years with TBS. The prestigious Squier-Hall Award is the latest in a long list of accolades bestowed upon Phillips during, and after, his exemplary career. Phillips was named the NMPA Writer of the Year seven times, won the NMPA Joe Littlejohn Award in 1977, the IMHOF Henry T. McLemore Award in 1978, the Buddy Shuman Award in 1986 and the NMPA George Cunningham Award in 1988. Phillips, who battled polio throughout his life, died in 2012 at the age of 74. "Benny Phillips told the engaging stories that transformed our drivers into heroes, and with it developed a deserved reputation as a trusted confidant whose determination and affable personality made him a beloved fixture in the NASCAR garage," said Brian France, NASCAR chairman and CEO. "Benny delivered the stories of our sport to millions of NASCAR fans on a daily basis through newspapers, books, magazines and television. This award has been given only to the giants of his industry, and unquestionably, Benny was exactly that." Phillips penned four books, including Dale Earnhardt’s autobiography "Determined," which he co-authored with fellow NASCAR reporter Ben Blake. Phillips was among eight nominees voted upon by a panel comprised of NASCAR and NASCAR Hall of Fame executives, journalists, public relations representatives and former competitors. The Squier-Hall Award was created in 2012 to honor the contributions of media to the success of the sport. Legendary broadcasters Ken Squier and Barney Hall, for whom the award is named, were its initial recipients. Chris Economaki, Tom Higgins and Steve Byrnes have since won the award. The other seven nominees were: Norma " Dusty " Brandel: The first woman to report from inside the NASCAR garage. Russ Catlin: One of the best-known early racing writers and historians, served as editor of "Speed Age" magazine. Shav Glick: Covered motorsports for the Los Angeles Times for 37 years, bringing NASCAR coverage to the West Coast. Bob Jenkins: Served as the lead NASCAR lap-by-lap anchor at ESPN from 1982-2000. Bob Moore: Spent more than 20 years as a NASCAR beat writer including stints with the Daytona Beach News-Journal and The Charlotte Observer. T. Taylor Warren: Best known for his three-wide photo of the 1959 Daytona 500 finish, he covered every Daytona 500 until his death in 2008. Steve Waid: Covered NASCAR for more than 40 years for the Roanoke Times & World News, NASCAR Scene and NASCAR Illustrated.
NXS GarageCam fit for a King
GarageCam host Matthew Dillner gives you a tour of the NASCAR XFINITY Series garage, catches up with some drivers and gets Richard Petty's thoughts on the 2016 low-downforce package that will be run at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.