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Kyle Busch surprises fan with autograph on RV
Kyle Busch and his wife Samantha are seriously doing the most good . After all, it wasn't too long ago that the couple was pulling alongside Kyle Busch fans in traffic just to make their day. Now, take a look at what the pair got themselves into on Saturday evening when a wreck ended Busch's run in the XFINITY Series race early. Samantha shared a video on Twitter of the 2015 Sprint Cup Series champion climbing the tires of an RV just to sign the No. 18 logo that was sprawled across the side. "They're not home right now, but they'll have quite a surprise when they come back," Samantha says of the RV owners in the video post. These Kyle fans are going to be pretty happy when they come back pic.twitter.com/MVl0NG8fQu — Samantha Busch (@SamanthaBusch) August 6, 2016
Sam Hornish Jr. sets track record, earns Coors Light Pole at Mid-Ohio
RELATED: Results Sam Hornish Jr . won the Coors Light Pole Award Friday at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course , setting a track speed record as well. Hornish Jr. wheeled his No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet around the 2.258-mile, 13-turn road course in Lexington, Ohio, at a track record-setting 96.755 mph in the opening session of qualifying. In the second and final session, with a fast lap of 96.374 mph, he sealed the first starting spot in the Mid-Ohio Challenge (3:30 p.m. ET, USA Network, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). "The fact that we're here. We're as good as we have been really is hats off to RCR and all the people that work on the Rheem No. 2 car," the polesitter said post-qualifying. "Right off the bat, this morning I was kind of worried about it being a little bit rusty. It's been a little while since I've been on a road course." This marks Hornish's eighth career pole and first of 2016. Sharing the front row will be Owen Kelly , a road specialist who reached 95.877 mph in the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota. Ryan Blaney , (95.739 mph in No. 22 Team Penske Ford), Elliott Sadler (95.675 mph, No. 1 JR Motorsports Chevrolet) and Daniel Suarez (95.613 mph, No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota) completed the top five, respectively.
Hornish Jr. to fill in for McDowell at Michigan
CONCORD, N.C. (August 23, 2016) – Circle Sport - Leavine Family Racing (CSLFR) has announced that Sam Hornish Jr . will fill in for Michael McDowell on Friday and Saturday during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race weekend at Michigan International Speedway . McDowell is scheduled to race in the NASCAR XFINITY Series at Road America for Richard Childress Racing on Friday and Saturday. He will then travel to Michigan International Speedway and drive the No. 95 Thrivent Financial Chevrolet on Sunday in the Pure Michigan 400 for Circle Sport - Leavine Family Racing .
Cain: No need to panic about struggling Hendrick
Who's panicking? Not the Hendrick Motorsports team, as some have suggested. Working overtime, brainstorming, gritting their teeth and rolling up their sleeves? Perhaps. But this organization -- which hasn't celebrated a victory since March -- knows a little something about challenging for NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series championships, and it would be naïve and foolhardy to believe the team's summer doldrums are a definitive sign of playoff potential. At least that's what history has shown us. And what Jimmie Johnson tells us. And what team owner Rick Hendrick has assured. "A lot of hard work went on during the break that we had," Johnson said last weekend at Bristol, Tennessee. "Just judging by the excitement from (crew chief) Chad (Knaus) and all the way through to Mr. Hendrick, we're definitely turning over some stones and are hopeful to bring a little better product to the race track week in and week out. "We've been struggling at times, trying to produce speed and lap times of late and making mistakes in the process. We're still rallying with some decent finishes from time to time, but then again, still having some bad luck. I think Watkins Glen kind of speaks to that as well; and also self-inflicted mistakes. "I think come Chase time, in the middle of the Chase, the way things are looking back at the shop, and the excitement I see in all the departments, we're expecting a good late-season surge for Hendrick Motorsports ." Labor Day -- which traditionally marks the end of summer -- can't come soon enough for this team. Johnson is the only member of this Fab Four lineup to hoist a trophy this season, and the six-time champ did it twice right off the bat -- winning the second race of the year at Atlanta, then three weeks later in California. Chase Elliott opened his rookie campaign with 11 top-10 finishes in the first 15 races, including pole positions for the Daytona 500 and at Talladega Superspeedway . And he capped off that season-starting run with a career-best runner-up at Michigan International Speedway -- where the series returns this weekend. Kasey Kahne is also seeking his first trophy of the year, but already has six top 10s -- more than halfway to his entire total (10) from last year. And he has won at both Michigan (2006 from the pole position) and at Richmond, Virginia (2005), where the Chase field will be formally set on Sept. 10. As the Chase Grid stands now, Kahne is tied with Kyle Larson , three positions shy of qualifying. They trail 16th-place Ryan Newman by 39 points. With Dale Earnhardt Jr .'s return still unknown as he recovers from concussion-like symptoms, the feared Hendrick foursome realizes it is a threesome come title time. But it remains a championship threat. "Our guys have been working really hard these past few weeks," said Elliott, who is Chase-eligible by being ranked 12th in the standings. "Everybody is fired up at Hendrick Motorsports . Mr. Hendrick himself is fired up -- he has been around the shop a lot. We are all just trying to give it the best effort we can to try and make the most of these next 14 weeks. "We are all working hard, we are all in. Hopefully, Michigan will be a step in the right direction." In the past -- such as during Johnson's jaw-dropping six title runs in eight years – this team has made it look almost too easy. So Toyota has stepped it up, winning its first Cup championship last year with Kyle Busch and collecting 11 trophies already this year. Ford's been every bit a player, as well, with Team Penske drivers -- Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano -- earning enough trophies (five) between the two of them to keep the others honest this season. And Hendrick's Chevy "alliance" partner, the Stewart-Haas Racing team, has certainly come to the party with at least three Chase entrants including 2014 Sprint Cup champion Kevin Harvick , who won his second race Sunday at Bristol and leads the championship standings; team owner Tony Stewart , who won at Sonoma , California; and Kurt Busch , who is ranked third in points. And while Johnson's two wins and Elliott's poles seem like it's business as usual, there is a new sense of urgency to right the Hendrick ship heading into the Chase. Johnson has the two wins, but he has only three top 10s in the last 14 races, a stretch that also includes four finishes of 30th or worse. Similarly, Elliott hasn't had a top-10 since his runner-up at Michigan. And Kahne has only one top 10 in that time. "We have been struggling this year, have not been as good as we want or should be," Hendrick said over the weekend while admitting he's even gotten up at 4:30 am to go to the wind tunnel with his team. "We know we have the ingredients and we're not satisfied, and we're going to do whatever it takes. That's been our motto all these years. We're at, what, 242 wins in Cup series? And we're not done. "Nobody's satisfied. We've wrecked more cars. … Haven't led races like we usually do. Not making any excuses, we've got to get to work. That's the deal. We're all committed and we're all excited. Nobody stays on top forever but we're not happy where we are and we want to get back." "I'm accountable," Hendrick continued. "They're accountable. "When you're not doing well, you can walk away and point fingers or you can jump in it and say, 'Let's get with it. We know how to do it. Let's get better working together.' "I'm proud of our company and we're going to be better. I like the challenge."
Landon Cassill honors J.D. McDuffie with Darlington look
RELATED: All the 2016 throwback paint schemes " Buy tickets " Vote now Landon Cassill revealed his throwback paint scheme for the Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway through a NASCAR Facebook Live event on Tuesday. The No. 38 Front Row Motorsports Ford's look is inspired by J.D. McDuffie, a racing veteran who passed away in 1991. McDuffie made 653 starts in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, recording 106 top-10 finishes. McDuffie holds the record for making the most starts without ever reaching Victory Lane. "J.D. was a guy who just kept scrapping, week after week, and earned a lot of good finishes as a result," Cassill said in team release. "(Team owner) Bob Jenkins likes to say that Front Row Motorsports is the team that does more with less. You can definitely say that J.D. McDuffie did the same thing, and we're proud to honor his memory at Darlington." The throwback look is sponsored by Rumple Furniture Co. Inc. of Elkin, North Carolina, which also sponsored McDuffie for part of the 1980s. "This isn't just an old paint scheme, this is a great design," Cassill said during the Facebook Live event. "That's what I love about these." In five career Sprint Cup starts at Darlington, Cassill has an average finish of 26.0 and a best finish of 20th in last year's race. The Darlington throwback weekend culminates in the running of the Bojangles' Southern 500 on Sept. 4 (6 p.m. ET, NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). &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;
Biffle honors Kulwicki with Darlington scheme
RELATED: All the 2016 throwback paint schemes " Buy tickets " Vote now CONCORD, N.C. – NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Greg Biffle and his No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing team will honor 1992 premier series champion Alan Kulwicki during next month's Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway . Biffle, along with U.S. Congressman Richard Hudson and Andrew Collier, unveiled a Hooters paint scheme similar to the orange and white scheme featured on Kulwicki's Ford Thunderbird entries from 1991 through the first five races of the '93 season. "The sport was built on guys like that," Biffle said Tuesday. "He ran his own deal and wanted to do stuff his way. He had five career wins and a championship in 92 -- that's a really, really neat story. It's unfortunate that I never got the chance to meet him." The popular restaurant chain began its' sponsorship of the No. 7 team at the fifth race of the '91 season at Darlington. Kulwicki was both owner and driver for the single-team organization. The 1.366-mile track was also the site of Kulwicki's final start – he placed sixth in '93 TranSouth 500 . Kulwicki, the series' 1986 Rookie of the Year, was killed in a plane crash in Blountville, Tenn., on April 1, 1993. To possibly win with Hooters on the No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford? "How cool would that be?" Biffle asked. "Then to do an Alan Kulwicki victory lap … would be a storybook ending." Biffle will be making his 16th career start at Darlington, where he has two victories (2005, '06) and a pair of poles. His average starting position at the track is 11.1, best for the 46-year-old among the 22 venues hosting Sprint Cup Series races, while his average finish of 13.6 there is fourth overall. He has led more laps at Darlington (718) than any track other than Texas Motor Speedway , where he has led 733. This is the second season the legendary track has hosted a throwback-themed race weekend, with teams sporting paint schemes similar to those seen in the past. The Bojangles' Southern 500 is scheduled 6 p.m. ET, Sunday, Sept. 4 (NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR). Hooters isn't just on the car as part of the throwback scheme, the restaurant chain is also taking an active role with the team, helping to promote National First Responders Day. Collier, a machinist in the Hendrick Motorsports engine shop, has been a driving force in trying to establish a national day of recognition for first responders. His brother, Sean, was a police officer with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2013 when he was killed by one of two Boston Marathon bombers. "Sean was planning on going and hanging out with some friends that night," Andrew Collier said. "He had no idea … that happens to a lot of first responders every year. It's time we honor them; they are our front line here at home. You have an accident … a fire, anything, none of us ever want to see it but if it does happen to us, the first thing we do is count on them. "It's time to honor them and make this day a reality." For more information about the effort to establish a national day of recognition, visit www.firstrespondersday.org . &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;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;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Kyle Larson's Darlington paint scheme revealed
RELATED: All the 2016 throwback paint schemes " Buy tickets " Vote now Chip Ganassi Racing and Kyle Larson will honor Target's start in auto racing at this year's Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway . The team revealed Tuesday on social media the No. 42 Chevrolet to be used in the Sept. 4 race (6 p.m. ET, NBC, MRN, Sirius XM Radio) This paint scheme is 3 years older than me! Throwing it back to @Target 's first-ever racecar for @TooToughToTame . pic.twitter.com/dxGBCv13uI — Kyle Larson (@KyleLarsonRacin) August 23, 2016 The slick scheme honors Target's first car in motorsports, in IndyCar in 1990. The bull's-eye on the roof is a nod to both Chip Ganassi Racing 's relationship with Target, and also CGR's roots in IndyCar racing. The Southern 500 will also mark Larson's 100th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start.
Darlington paint scheme fan vote early top 10 revealed
RELATED: All the 2016 throwback paint schemes " Buy tickets " Vote now The Darlington Best In Show fan vote is underway, and we have some early returns to share. As Darlington Raceway celebrates NASCAR's history with its second of four planned throwback weekends for this year's Bojangles' Southern 500 (6 p.m. ET Sept. 4, NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), fans are voting on their favorite paint schemes honoring drivers and paint schemes of yore. The top 10 vote-getters up until now are, in alphabetical order: AJ Allmendinger , Kurt Busch , Kyle Busch , Kevin Harvick , Jimmie Johnson , Matt Kenseth , Casey Mears , David Ragan , Tony Stewart and Martin Truex Jr . The top five fan vote getters' paint schemes will be presented to a panel of NASCAR Hall of Fame members, who will make the final selection. The award for the Best Throwback Paint Scheme will be presented to the winning team and driver prior to the Bojangles' Southern 500 . &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;gt;
Kahne honors Labonte with Darlington look
RELATED: All the 2016 throwback paint schemes " Buy tickets " Vote now Kasey Kahne became the latest NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver to unveil a throwback paint scheme for next week's Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway . Kahne's No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports LiftMaster Chevrolet was displayed Wednesday afternoon at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina, with Terry Labonte in attendance. The scheme is a nod to Labonte's paint scheme in 1981 when he drove for team owner JD Stacy. "Darlington's throwback weekend is one of the coolest programs any track does all year," Kahne said in a LiftMaster release. "I'm glad that LiftMaster is participating in the program to celebrate their start of the garage door opener business. I appreciate the opportunity to honor Terry Labonte with our throwback paint scheme at one of my favorite tracks." This is the second season the legendary track has hosted a throwback-themed race weekend, with teams sporting paint schemes similar to those seen in the past. The Bojangles' Southern 500 is scheduled 6 p.m. ET, Sunday, Sept. 4 (NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR). &amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Chris Buescher reveals Darlington throwback look
RELATED: All the 2016 throwback paint schemes " Buy tickets " Vote now Chris Buescher is the latest driver to reveal his throwback paint scheme for Darlington's Bojangles' Southern 500 on Sept. 4 (6 p.m. ET, NBC, MRN, SiriusXM). The Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate's No. 34 Front Row Motorsports Ford matches the fuel canopies from sponsor Love's Travel Stops first travel stop in 1981. Check out the scheme in Buescher's tweet below. My @LovesTravelStop scheme for @TooToughToTame ! Matches the fuel canopies from Love’s first travel stop in 1981. pic.twitter.com/40D7cndQ4J — Chris Buescher (@Chris_Buescher) August 24, 2016 "The Darlington throwback weekend has become a pretty big deal, and it's cool to have Love's Travel Stops bring some of their history into the race weekend with their old colors," Buescher said in a team release. "Darlington is my favorite track, and I can't wait to get there and turn some laps in this special Love's Ford Fusion." This year's Darlington race will mark Buescher's first event there in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competition. The 2015 XFINITY Series champion notched one top 10 in four career XFINITY Series starts at Darlington. Buescher's teammate Landon Cassill unveiled his throwback on Tuesday, which you can see here . &amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;