- Did you mean:
John Hunter Nemechek penalized after Loudon
NASCAR.com's Zack Albert gets you up to speed as John Hunter Nemechek is assessed a P2 penalty following the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Daytona winner King smacks the wall
John King gets loose entering Turn 2 and hits the wall.
Purple punch: Earnhardt Jr.'s classic North Wilkesboro memory
RELATED: North Wilkesboro, 20 years later Dale Earnhardt Jr . didn't begin his career in NASCAR's premier series until 1999, three years after the series had moved on from North Wilkesboro Speedway. But Earnhardt Jr., a student of NASCAR history, did compete at the .625-mile track, racing a Late Model entry on at least a couple of occasions. "I ran the Sun Drop (sponsored) car there," Earnhardt Jr. recalled. "Actually, I think we went there twice. With the Sun Drop car I remember qualifying 19th or something; I don't remember how many cars were there but I'm sure they sent a few home so it was cool to make the race." The contentment was short-lived. According to Earnhardt, he "T-boned a guy and had to run the rest of the race with no fenders or hood or anything. So it wasn't a whole lot of fun." The following year, all three Earnhardt siblings -- Earnhardt Jr., older brother Kerry and older sister Kelley -- made the trek to the legendary track to compete in the Late Model race. None of the three managed to qualify, a situation that didn't sit well with their father and team owner, Dale Earnhardt. "Dad had assumed that I would make the race because we'd been running so good at Myrtle Beach," Earnhardt Jr. said. "He said, 'You guys run this race' and there was a race at Myrtle Beach that night; he was going to fly us in his King Air to the beach so we could compete that night and stay in the track points (battle)." But when Dale Jr. failed to make the show, "He told me and my guys to screw off, that we had to drive the damn van all the way from North Wilkesboro to Myrtle Beach to try to make the race. "We had to hustle; we barely made it. He was pissed off that all three cars missed the race." MORE: How end of "tire war" started at track Failing to qualify and having to drive all day to that night's race wasn't the only issue. An incident with "questionable" fuel also took place, but Earnhardt Jr. laughs when he recounts the incident today. "I had a jug of trick fuel for my car," he said. "It was a purple gas jug. We kept it in that purple gas jug so we wouldn't mix it up with the other fuel. It was probably Elf fuel or something just to give my car a little more speed. Or it might have had some propylene oxide in there or something. "One of Kerry or Kelley's guys walked over to get some gas for their car and grabbed the purple jug and a fight ensued between their crew and my crew; it sort of let the cat out of the bag that whatever was in that jug was pretty special. That was kind of comical." Something to laugh about, no doubt, on the long drive from the hills of North Wilkesboro to the sands of Myrtle Beach. &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Penalties hamper Nemechek, NEMCO team in Chase
NASCAR issued penalties Thursday to the No. 8 NEMCO Motorsports team and Camping World Truck Series driver John Hunter Nemechek for P2 infractions found last weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway . Nemechek's No. 8 Chevrolet failed to meet the minimum ride height during an inspection after last Saturday's UNOH 175 , the opening race of the Camping World Truck Series Chase playoffs. Competition officials docked the team 10 championship points in both the owners' and drivers' standings. The penalty dropped Nemechek, who rallied from an early spin to finish ninth last weekend, from fourth to seventh on the Chase Grid with two races remaining before cuts are made to the championship-eligible field. NASCAR officials also fined crew chief Gere Kennon $6,000 and NASCAR probation for the crew chief continues through Dec. 31, 2016. It's the second such violation this season for the NEMCO team, which also failed the ride-height minimum at Iowa Speedway in June for a P2-grade infraction. NASCAR abandoned ride-height rules for its Sprint Cup Series ahead of the 2014 season. Those restrictions remain in effect for its other two national series. This week's penalty report for the Sprint Cup and XFINITY Series was marked by written warnings and lesser violations. From the Sprint Cup Series race weekend in New Hampshire, the following teams were cited: -- The No. 7 Tommy Baldwin Racing team of driver Regan Smith received written warnings for failing pre-race LIS twice and pre-qualifying LIS twice. -- The No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing team of driver Kevin Harvick , No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports team of driver Kasey Kahne , No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing team of driver Greg Biffle and No. 83 BK Racing team of driver Matt DiBenedetto all received written warnings for failing pre-qualifying LIS twice. -- The No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing team for driver Denny Hamlin received a written warning for failing pre-qualifying template inspection twice. The pre-qualifying LIS failures of Nos. 4, 5, 7 and 16 teams were each their third infractions, meaning the next such infraction will see those teams penalized with the last selection of a pit stall on the weekend that violation occurs. Of those cars, only the 4 of Harvick is in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup . Warnings from the XFINITY Series' event at Kentucky Speedway : -- The No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing team and No. 51 Jeremy Clements Racing team of driver Jeremy Clements received written warnings for failing pre-race LIS twice. Warnings from the Camping World Truck Series' event at New Hampshire Motor Speedway : -- The No. 50 MAKE Motorsports team of driver Travis Kvapil received a written warning for failing pre-race template inspection four times and also a loss of 15 minutes of practice time this weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway .
Nemechek, Chase drivers get professional fight training from UFC
Knowing that Cole Custer may be targeting some payback at some point in the inaugural Camping World Truck Series Chase, John Hunter Nemechek enlisted some help Friday from a group of trained professionals -- UFC fighters. Sure, there were other Chase drivers there as they participated in the event promoting the DC Solar 350 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (Saturday at 8:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), but you've gotta imagine the No. 8 Chevrolet driver was feverishly taking mental notes in the event a hard-charging Custer knee comes flying his way after a race again a la Canadian Tire Motorsport Park . In @Vegas at the @ufc training facility with @JHNemechek . Nemechek talking with @ForrestGriffin . #NASCAR pic.twitter.com/tu12RSmI32 — NEMCO Motorsports (@NEMCOMotorsport) September 30, 2016 Just finished training at the @ufc training facility in @Vegas with @ForrestGriffin , @UriahHallMMA , @evandunham155 , & @MoTownPhenom . #UFC pic.twitter.com/1dcvlC64m2 — John Hunter Nemechek (@JHNemechek) September 30, 2016 Driver @JHNemechek working out with the @ufc athletes. #NASCAR pic.twitter.com/h3M7iUFGjS — NEMCO Motorsports (@NEMCOMotorsport) September 30, 2016 The rest of the Chase field was there, as well, and seemed to have a pretty great time. @DanielHemric & @mattcrafton having Pre-Race fun at UFC HQ in Vegas! pic.twitter.com/Ch0hfVoRu8 — Jason Semerau (@TracksideExp) September 30, 2016 Bit of Sparring fun with @DanielHemric ! pic.twitter.com/cSgVTiQOrZ — Jason Semerau (@TracksideExp) September 30, 2016 How about some @ufc training before tomorrow night's @LVMotorSpeedway race! #TheChase pic.twitter.com/7MmyWQH1H1 — NASCAR Trucks (@NASCAR_Trucks) September 30, 2016 . @ufc Hall of Famer @ForrestGriffin leads the 8 @NASCAR_Trucks Chase drivers through drills @ The Ultimate Fighter Gym b4 Sat's @DCSolar 350 pic.twitter.com/iTLP8eiK0x — Las Vegas Speedway (@LVMotorSpeedway) September 30, 2016 . @ufc follows @NASCAR_Trucks on @FS1 Sat night, so the 8 Chase drivers are learning from @DCSolar 350 grand marshal @ForrestGriffin & others pic.twitter.com/sbKO8NW08A — Las Vegas Speedway (@LVMotorSpeedway) September 30, 2016 The @NASCAR_Trucks Chase drivers get some shots in on @ufc Hall of Famer & @DCSolar 350 grand marshal @ForrestGriffin pic.twitter.com/RL3FURCsFz — Las Vegas Speedway (@LVMotorSpeedway) September 30, 2016 . @NASCAR_Trucks Chase drivers had an intense work out w/ @ForrestGriffin and @ufc fighters! #DCSolar350 pic.twitter.com/NUOT5pzK3y — Las Vegas Speedway (@LVMotorSpeedway) September 30, 2016
Heads up: Dover and Las Vegas weekend
Here are the hot topics, trending news and key story lines to get you ready for this weekend's races at Dover International Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway . WEATHER The weekend forecast for Dover, Delaware, looks like there's a chance for rain. Friday for Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole qualifying there is a 60 percent chance for precipitation. For the XFINITY Series race on Saturday, there is an 50 percent chance for precipitation with a high of 76 degrees. And for the Sprint Cup race on Sunday, there's a 30 percent chance for precipitation and a high of 76 degrees. For Las Vegas, site of this weekend's Camping World Truck Series events, it will be clear and 70 degrees for the start of Saturday's practices. And on Saturday it will be clear and 90 degrees for the start of the race. KEY TIMES Sprint Cup Series: The Sprint Cup Series holds its first practice Friday at 10 a.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App) followed by Coors Light Pole qualifying at 3:40 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App). The Citizen Soldier 400 is at 2 p.m. ET Sunday (NBCSN/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). XFINITY Series: The XFINITY Series opens practice on Friday at 11:30 a.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App) and qualifies Saturday at 11:45 a.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App). The Drive Sober 300 is on Saturday at 3 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Camping World Truck Series: The Camping World Truck Series is scheduled for a Keystone Light Pole qualifying session Saturday at 6:10 p.m. ET on FS2, followed by the DC Solar 350 race at 8:30 p.m. ET (FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). CATCH DRIVERS LIVE We'll stream every driver press conference in the Dover media center at NASCAR.com/presspass. Click here for a full schedule. Click here to tune into the live stream . LAST TIME In September of 2015, Kevin Harvick punched his ticket to advance to the next round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup by leading 355 of 400 laps at Dover International Speedway , a career-best at any track. Harvick beat out eventual 2015 Sprint Cup Series champion Kyle Busch by 2.639 seconds for the victory. YOU SHOULD KNOW • Chris Buescher (-30 from 12th place), Tony Stewart (-11), Austin Dillon (-5) and Jamie McMurray (-5) are all on the outside looking in as far as the Chase Grid standings are concerned. Of those drivers, Stewart is the only one who has won at the "Monster Mile" -- three times to be exact. Stewart's most recent win came in 2013. • With 10 wins, six-time Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson has been to Dover's Victory Lane more times than any NASCAR driver. Johnson is looking to punch his ticket to the next Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup round and a win at his best track could be in the cards. • Winning the opening XFINITY Series Chase race at Kentucky, Elliott Sadler continues his momentum to Dover where he has earned three top five and 10 top-10 finishes, two of which came in the last two XFINITY Series races at the 1-mile track. Sadler's experience in 17 starts at Dover could shine through on Saturday compared to the young guns he's competing against for the championship. • Of the Camping World Truck Series Chase drivers, only Johnny Sauter and Timothy Peters have wins at Las Vegas Motor Speedway . Canadian Tire Motorsport Park winner John Hunter Nemechek has the best average finish of 4.0 out of the Truck Series Chase drivers. Behind Nemechek is Ben Kennedy with 5.0. Nemechek has run just one Truck Series race at Dover, while Kennedy has experienced two. In 15 starts, two-time Camping World Truck Series champion Matt Crafton has an average finish of 11.9, but is still seeking a win.
Petty family announces 10-month celebration for 'The King's 80th birthday
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (September 3, 2016) - The Petty family and its brand of companies today announced a 10-month long campaign to celebrate NASCAR Hall of Fame driver and owner, "The King " Richard Petty turning 80. Petty may not be celebrating his 80th birthday until July 2, 2017, but the Petty brand of companies including, Richard Petty Motorsports , Petty's Garage, Petty Family Foundation, Petty Museum and Victory Junction, plan to celebrate for the next 10 months. The Petty family, who are well known for giving back to local communities and race fans, is now turning the table, allowing fans to give their thanks of 80 years with "The King ." The Petty family introduced a celebration calendar this week, www.KINGs80th.com , where fans can follow the various activities planned leading to the Petty's birthday celebration in Daytona Beach, Fla.in 2017. To kick off the activities, Petty's children, Kyle, Lisa, Rebecca and Sharon, Petty's Garage and Ford Motor Company partnered to surprise the American Icon with the 43rd and last build of the 2017 Petty's Garage " King Edition" Ford Mustang GT. The car is colored silver and is one of now only 26 left available to the public through your local Ford dealer. The family presented the keys to the car today at the prestigious and popular Mustang Club Car Show in Indianapolis, Indiana. "We are so proud to celebrate Daddy's birthday with all his fans over the course of the next year," said Rebecca Petty-Moffitt. "There is no better way to kick it off than with Ford Motor Company and Petty's Garage allowing us to give Dad the 43rd build of the 'King Edition' Ford Mustang GT. Ford is a huge supporter of all of the Petty brands with strong partnerships with Richard Petty Motorsports , Petty's Garage, Victory Junction and more, and even provided support for Dad during his career. We have so much more planned for our fans; today is just the start." In addition to today's car giveaway, the Petty Museum announced its newest offering to fans. The Petty Museum is now offering shirts that replicate the first racing tee Petty wore. The shirt features the 1964 Plymouth that Petty raced. The shirt will be available at the Petty Museum and on their website until July 2017. All of the Petty brands will get in on the action. Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) will engage fans with special promotions, including special packages from its sponsors. Petty's Garage will continue their celebration during their mobile tour stops throughout the country. The Petty Museum will soon announce special apparel along with additional merchandise throughout the celebration. Petty Museum will culminate their celebration with the opening of the Petty-Toomes Homestead historical landmark in Level Cross, N.C., the birthplace for Petty. Petty Family Foundation, Victory Junction and the Kyle Petty Charity Ride will also join the celebration during various events throughout the year, including special donations to the charities throughout the year. Stay tuned to www.KINGs80th.com as all brands continue to expand the celebration through licensing partners and other special celebration promotions. Fans are welcome to join in the conversation through social media using the hashtag, #KINGs80th across all Petty entities.
Proud of his win, John Hunter Nemechek defends Truck race finish
MORE: Custer: 'He wanted to ruin our day' John Hunter Nemechek made the media rounds Wednesday to promote NASCAR's upcoming Camping World Truck Series race in Chicago and to talk about the series' inaugural Chase, which starts later this month in New Hampshire. But there was this one "other thing" everyone was more eager to discuss with last weekend's winner: Nemechek's bump of Cole Custer in the final corner and the ensuing pass-in-the-grass to edge Custer for the win at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park on Sunday. It was a dramatic finish, and Nemechek acknowledges, it was also controversial. So much so that a frustrated Custer, 18, ran across the track and tackled Nemechek, 19, as the second-generation driver waited near the officials' stand to receive the checkered flag. "There's been a lot of attention toward the finish and towards me on social media but like we said, we're happy that we got the win and we won't take that away from anything," Nemechek said. "But if the circumstances of us going in the grass hadn't happened, they wouldn't be talking about the finish. That's the only thing you'd like to go back and change, is not ending up in the grass." As he did on Sunday, Nemechek did not back down from his elation at winning even under contentious conditions. "I'm definitely proud to get the win, to get our second win of the year checked off our list and have some momentum going into the Chase," Nemechek said. "It was a great day for our whole team. I hate the circumstances it ended under with us in the grass, and that definitely wasn't what we were trying to do in making the pass. "If we could go back and change the circumstances we would, but a win is a win and we'll take it." It was actually the second win this season for the No. 8 Chevrolet truck, owned by Nemechek's father, Joe, a former NASCAR Busch Grand National (now called the XFINITY Series) champion. And John Hunter said his father -- along with many others -- offered support following the race. Nemechek did note, however, that his father had not seen the race ending live and did not see a replay until after the Victory Lane celebration. "He said congrats on the win and that I did everything right all day and we executed our strategy well, having to save fuel there at the end," Nemechek said. "I actually ran out of gas on the cool-down lap so we stretched it as far as we could. But he ( Joe Nemechek ) said, 'You were smart all day, and you were there at the end. That's what made the victory.' " Custer is not high enough in points to earn a Chase berth and will now have one more shot to score a victory at Chicagoland on Sept. 16 and earn his position in the Chase. In addition to the tackle at the race track, Custer has candidly shared his displeasure about the ending with the national media this week. There have even been suggestions that Custer may try to even the score by wrecking Nemechek during the championship Chase although Custer never directly said such. Nemechek did acknowledge the possibility himself. "You can't be paranoid, you can't worry," Nemechek said. "If it happens, it happens. "I definitely think it would be a whole different story and you'd expect payback if it ended like the Ty Dillon incident a couple years ago where he ended up in the tire barriers and didn't finish the race. "We raced back to the line and finished first and second. So who knows what's going to happen. You can't worry about it." As for Custer and Nemechek racing together at Chicago in the final race before the Camping World Truck Series Chase grid is set, Nemechek is hopeful that time and maybe some effort on his part will ease the tension. "I haven't spoken to him yet, but I expect to in the future," Nemechek said.
John Hunter Nemechek talks controversial finish
John Hunter Nemechek talks on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio about his controversial finish at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park with Cole Custer.
How Matt Kenseth helped John Krasinski land role of 'Jim' on 'The Office'
It's nearly impossible to think an actor besides John Krasinski playing the role of 'Jim Halpert' on the American version of "The Office," but it may not have happened without the help of Matt Kenseth . Did that just blow your mind? It should have. Back in 2002 -- a full three years before the NBC premiere of inarguably the greatest comedy series of all time, in my opinion, at least -- a fresh-faced Krasinski appeared in a commercial with Kenseth that caught the eye of future "Office" executive producer, Greg Daniels. The back-and-forth dialogue between last fall's grand marshal at Texas Motor Speedway and Kenseth (more back than forth, knowing the stoic Joe Gibbs Racing driver) and wild antics by the now-36-year-old led to an audition and before long, "Jim" was born. Krasinski recently spoke about it on NPR's Fresh Air podcast with Dave Davies . "I haven't seen or heard that since the time I did it. That is a real send back to memory lane," Krasinski said. " … That was a huge performance and I remember we had a little bit of script and Matt Kenseth had said he doesn't want to have a line in the script. He was very shy and he didn't want ... he just wanted to walk through the commercial. "At the end of the day, they just asked 'Would you just improv and have fun? Let's see what we get' and we just kept going and I think they just watched the dog go off the leash, just improving all this stuff. By the end, Matt said 'Well, now I do want to say some stuff.' So he came in and we were joking around all day. It was probably one of the more fun times I've had, certainly before I got 'The Office . ' " The commercial worked wonders for both men, as Krasinski is now a household name and Kenseth won five races that year, following it up with his only premier series title the following season. Watch the full commercial below.