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Dale Earnhardt Jr. injury timeline
Dale Earnhardt Jr. will miss NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Michigan International Speedway and Darlington Raceway as he continues to recover from concussion-like symptoms. Dale Jr. had previously missed races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway , Indianapolis Motor Speedway , Pocono Raceway , Watkins Glen International and Bristol Motor Speedway . Alex Bowman (New Hampshire and Michigan) and four-time champion Jeff Gordon (Indianapolis, Pocono, Watkins Glen, Bristol and Darlington) are filling in for him in the No. 88 Chevrolet. Stay up-to-date on Dale Jr.'s injury and recovery through the timeline of events below.
Suarez, Sadler clinch spots in XFINITY Series Chase
RELATED: Full race results " Standings " Chase Grid Daniel Suarez and Elliott Sadler have both clinched spots in the inaugural NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase coming out of the Lilly Diabates 250 on Saturday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Suarez (No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota) and Sadler (No. 1 JR Motorsports Chevrolet) already had spots locked up in the top 30 in points, but needed a new Chase-eligible driver not to win at Indianapolis. That was achieved with Kyle Busch's third straight win and seventh victory of the season in the series . Suarez and Sadler join Erik Jones (No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota) as the only drivers to officially clinch spots in the 12-driver, elimination-style playoff that will be used in the series this fall. The drivers must start the remaining eight races of the regular season. Jones has two wins (Bristol and Dover), while Suarez and Sadler have one each (Suarez won at Michigan, Sadler at Talladega). The seven-race XFINITY Series Chase opens on Sept. 24 at Kentucky Speedway. MORE: All of 2016's XFINITY winners
McDowell earns first XFINITY Series win at Road America
RELATED: Full race results " Standings " Chase Grid ELKHART LAKE, Wis. -- Michael McDowell ’s Twitter handle is @Mc_Driver. After Saturday, he may want to consider changing it -- to something like @Mc_Winner. McDowell led 24 of the final 25 laps of the NASCAR XFINITY Series Road America 180 Fired Up by Johnsonville for his first victory in 94 series races. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series regular finished .534 seconds ahead of his Richard Childress Racing teammate Brendan Gaughan after two late restarts, including a green-white-checkered that pushed the race to 48 laps from its scheduled 45. Chip Ganassi Racing ’s Brennan Poole was the top-finishing rookie, third, in his first start at Road America , after starting 12th. The top three drivers were in Chevrolets. The victory was the perfect finish to some unfinished business McDowell had at the 14-turn, 4.048-mile racetrack. In 2011, he started from the pole position and led a race-high 30 laps, but ultimately finished 12th. In 2012, he started second and finished second. "It means a tremendous amount to me," said McDowell, who will compete in Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway . "I've been so close here at Road America . To finally finish it off was huge." It almost wasn't, as Gaughan's late charge nearly spoiled McDowell's day. The 2014 race winner spent much of the day running in the second half of the top 10 after getting out of pit stop sequence with the leaders. On the penultimate lap, though, Gaughan bolted from fourth-place to second after making a three-wide pass of Daniel Suarez and Justin Marks in Turn 5. From there, McDowell -- and victory -- was within reach. "When you're racing your teammate you've got to have a little more respect maybe than normal," Gaughan said. "I almost got close enough to him to make him make a mistake." McDowell didn't waver and pushed the Childress team's winning streak at Road America to three, joining Paul Menard (2015) and Gaughan (2014). The win was not without incident. Team Penske 's Alex Tagliani , who started from the pole position for the second time in two NASCAR XFINITY Series races at Road America , maintained that a Lap-29 tangle with McDowell was deliberate. "We were the car to beat," said Tagliani, who led 17 laps and had just regained the top spot going into Turn 5 when he was bumped from behind by McDowell and spun going into Turn 6. "The opportunity presented itself and he took the fastest car on the track out." Tagliani, who finished second here in 2014, wound up seventh. McDowell, when asked about the incident during his post-race press conference, said it wasn't intentional. "He went wide in Turn 5 and I got under ( Justin Marks ) and (Tagliani)," McDowell said. "I was alongside of him and he just decided to turn in. Once we made contact, I just came off the brake and pushed him out of the way. And the reason I did that is because if had I not, I'd have been stuck there too and I would have got run over." The race was slowed by six caution flags for 13 laps, including one for light rain. Elliott Sadler leads the NASCAR XFINITY Series championship standings by 47 points over Daniel Suarez .
XFINITY Series drivers share thoughts, memories of Bryan Clauson
LEXINGTON, Ohio -- The NASCAR world continues to mourn the loss of Bryan Clauson, a sprint car driver who died Sunday at the age of 27. Clauson crashed Saturday night during a U.S. Auto Club (USAC) midget car race at the Belleville High Banks, a half-mile dirt track in Belleville, Kansas, and was airlifted to a hospital in Lincoln, Nebraska, where he was pronounced dead late Sunday. Clauson was an accomplished sprint-car driver, who also made 26 starts in what is now the NASCAR XFINITY Series , will be remembered by teams this weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course with a special decal . The Indiana native had several friends and acquaintances in the NASCAR garage including Justin Marks , who is a part-time driver of the No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet in the XFINITY Series . "It's incredibly sad," Marks told NASCAR.com. "I met Bryan in 2007 when he was at Chip Ganassi Racing in Nationwide (now XFINITY .) He came through ARCA when I was in ARCA in '06 and '07, so I've known him for a long time. And really just in the last two years, got to know him better just because I got involved in the sport, World of Outlaws and he was around that." Marks co-owns a sprint-car organization, Larson Marks Racing, with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver and Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Kyle Larson . After Saturday's NASCAR XFINITY Series Mid-Ohio Challenge (3:30 p.m. ET, USA, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course , Marks is heading out to the Knoxville Nationals in Iowa. Clauson would have competed in the sprint-car event this weekend. "Bryan's a racer, Lauren (his fiancée) is a racer and Tim's (his father) a racer," Marks said. "They're just a racing family. It's all they've ever known." Sam Hornish Jr . (driver of the No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet at Mid-Ohio) said the loss is one you never want to hear about. "Racing is such a tight knit community of people," Hornish said. "There's always people that are there even though we are competing against each other, they want to see good things happen to other people if they can. So whenever there is a loss like that, you take it hard regardless of how well you were friends, not friends. Everybody's definitely been thinking about it for quite a bit this week." Ty Dillon (driver of the No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet), who has dabbled in some racing outside of NASCAR, called Clauson "a highly admired person" who is "going to be missed." "Everybody's got heavy hearts for the Clauson family," Dillon said. "… It's just sad. You feel for his family and you pray for them to be able to get through." Clauson had set a preseason goal of competing in 200 open-wheel races this year. That schedule included a start in the 100th Indianapolis 500, where he placed 23rd in his third effort at the famed Brickyard. According to Indianapolis Motor Speedway , Clauson had accumulated 27 wins in 116 races this season. "Bryan Clauson is the only guy in history to lead the Indy 500 (led three laps in the 2016 race) and win a 4/10 sprint car feature in the same day," Marks said. "That's a racer. They don't make them like that very much anymore."
Luke Wilson named Sonoma Sprint Cup Series pace car driver
Perhaps inspired by Darlington Raceway 's successful throwback program, Sonoma Raceway is going to be bringing a little bit of old school to its race weekend later this month. Actor Luke Wilson -- predominantly of "Old School" fame -- will drive a 2016 Toyota Camry pace car to kick off the Toyota/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Sonoma Raceway on Sunday, June 26. Wilson is also known for his comedic roles in films including "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy," "Legally Blonde," "Idiocracy," "Rushmore" and "The Royal Tenenbaums." The Texas native currently stars in Showtime’s new series "Roadies," which also premieres on June 26. The show follows the lives of a tight-knit group of rock-n roll-roadies working on the tour for a famous rock band. The show marks the first television series created by renowned film director Cameron Crowe ("Almost Famous") and his partnership with J.J. Abrams ("Lost", "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" ) , who is executive producer. "I feel incredibly honored to be asked to lead the field of cars to the green," said Wilson in a track release. "I have never done anything like this before and I'm really excited to start off the race at the Toyota/Save Mart 350 ." This will mark the first time Wilson has served as an Official Pace Car Driver at a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event. He will also be recognized during pre-race ceremonies and greet each NASCAR driver on stage during driver introductions. With Wilson on board, Sonoma is shaping up to be a nice little Sunday. Maybe after the race you can go to Lowe's. Yeah, buy some wallpaper, maybe get some flooring, stuff like that. Maybe Bed, Bath & Beyond. I don't know. I don't know if you'll have enough time.
Nationwide Series pit stall assignments
See where drivers will pit for the Ford EcoBoost 300 (4:30 p.m. ET, ESPN2) RELATED: Play NASCAR Fantasy Live " Sign up for RaceView today The NASCAR Nationwide Series pit stall assignments are out for Saturday's Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway . Coors Light Pole Award winner Brad Keselowski chose the first pit stall off pit road with an empty space in front of him for an easy departure. Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney , Kyle Busch and Brendan Gaughan also have open stalls in front of them. Chase Elliott, who clinched the 2014 series title last week, chose the first pit stall onto pit road for an easy entrance. The Nationwide Series will take the track at 4:30 p.m. ET with TV coverage on ESPN2. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Josh Berry picks up second Nationwide Series event
Late model champion will drive No. 5 at Homestead Josh Berry has picked up his second NASCAR Nationwide Series race for JR Motorsports, team co-owner Kelley Earnhardt Miller announced Wednesday on her podcast. On "Fast Lane Family," a radio show Earnhardt Miller hosts as part of Dirty Mo Radio, she announced that Berry would drive the No. 5 Ragu Chevrolet in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway . "We have worked really hard (for that sponsorship), and we're still working. We'd love to put Josh in more races," Earnhardt Miller said. Berry, who won the track championship at Hickory Motor Speedway this year driving a late model for JRM, finished 12th in his Nationwide Series debut at Iowa Speedway in August. "It's so exciting for me and I'm very thankful that Ragu came on board and everyone at JRM worked as hard as they did," Berry said on the radio show. "It's so cool to see happen." The No. 5 vehicle has been split among Berry, Kevin Harvick , Kasey Kahne and Austin Theriault this season. The team's two full-time drivers, Chase Elliott and Regan Smith , are currently first and second in the points standings. That's not lost on Berry. "I have a pretty good feeling it's going to be a real exciting weekend for all of JR Motorsports that weekend," he said. Click here to listen to this week's episode of Fast Lane Family. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
No. 74 NASCAR Nationwide Series team penalized after Dover
Rules infraction occured in practice DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- The No. 74 team that competes in the NASCAR Nationwide Series has been penalized for a rules infraction committed during a Sept. 26 practice at Dover International Speedway . The infraction is a P3 level penalty as outlined in Section 12-4.3 of the rule book and violates sections: · 12-1 : Actions detrimental to stock car racing; · 20A-2.3A : Added car weight. Weight not properly attached. Weight fell out during the event. As a result of this violation, crew chief Gary Ritter has been fined $10,000 and placed on NASCAR probation until Dec. 31. Text goes here MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView
Nationwide - NASCAR Nationwide Series Highlights
Nationwide created year-end spot celebrating highlights of their seven years as series entitlement sponsor. - Heather Brigham, Director
Justin Marks returns to XFINITY Series at Las Vegas
There is a familiarity about some things, but Justin Marks freely admits that "it's almost as if it was another life because it’s been so long." Marks, 34, returns to the NASCAR XFINITY Series for this weekend's Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway , climbing behind the wheel of the Chip Ganassi Racing No. 42 Chevrolet. It will be his first start in the series on a 1.5-mile track since 2011. "There's a learning curve and there is a transition at play here," Marks said. "But I've been to every track on the schedule. I've got 60 starts in ARCA, almost 40 in Trucks and a handful, 13 XFINITY , starts. "I've been to Las Vegas, but it was in a truck in 2008. So it's been eight years." Primarily known for his road-course ability, Marks got a refresher course on the ovals last weekend, finishing 22nd in the Camping World Truck Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway . This weekend's XFINITY race will be the first of what he says will be roughly one-half a season's worth of starts in a ride he will share with Sprint Cup Series driver Kyle Larson . CGR also fields the No. 48 fulltime in the XFINITY Series for driver Brennan Poole . Last season, Marks drove just three XFINITY races and one Truck race. Between 2012-15, he competed in eight races, total -- two Sprint Cup , five XFINITY and one Truck. "I think when that much time goes by, it's almost in a way like starting over," Marks said. "Maybe it all comes back a little bit quicker than if you were going there for the first time, but I have to approach these like I've never been there before because I've been out of the seat so long. "Last week when I did the truck race at Atlanta, the biggest thing for me to sort of overcome, at least initially, was basically just to feel the load in the corners, the G-forces and the load on the tires. That's a sensation that you just cannot replicate in any environment other than being in the race car. I can go into fancy simulators and I can go on iRacing and watch all the onboard footage. I can find every bump and know exactly where the line is, what will happen with the car (during the course) of a tire run. But the one thing you just can’t replicate is the seat-of-the-pants feel of feeling that load. "The first couple of laps at Atlanta, it almost startled me. I had forgotten … just how much force you are putting through the tires and into the racetrack. That's kind of where the learning curve is (for me), just feeling that again, 'OK, this is what it feels like.' " Marks has two career Sprint Cup Series starts, both coming at Sonoma Raceway, with Tommy Baldwin Racing in 2013 and last season with Front Row Motorsports . He has a pair of top-10 results in the XFINITY Series , finishing sixth at Mid-Ohio ('14) and seventh at Road America ('15). Why the sudden move to an increased on-track schedule? In addition to the occasional road course efforts, Marks has numerous business endeavors outside the race car that have required his attention. With others in place to now help oversee those interests, the time was right to re-commit to his racing efforts. "It's been in play for me for a couple of years to come back on the ovals in some sort of significant way," he said. "I'm not getting any younger. "I had a race opportunity with a big sponsor, good funding with a good team in 2008 when I was in the Trucks with Germain Racing . Hindsight being what it is, I probably didn't take full advantage of that situation. I didn't do the study, I didn't put the time in, I wasn't as focused as I needed to be. I've had eight years to reflect on that missed opportunity. I have a much better perspective going into this." The right situation to return required an opening as well as the proper funding. Until this season, the two failed to materialize simultaneously. Meanwhile, younger drivers continued to flow into the sport, and positions were filled. "If I was ever going to come back, it had to be in the right situation," Marks said. "With the right team, sitting in (equipment) that's capable of winning every time it hits the race track. "I've got some great relationships within Chip Ganassi Racing and its partners. That's kind of where I wanted to be, but for whatever reason there just wasn't an opportunity. Last year they had one car, the year before it was in the Turner-Scott Motorsports stable and I didn't have partner backing to do a significant program." For his '16 effort, Marks will have funding from Katerra, a high tech construction group. "A great partner … willing to step up to the plate," Marks said. "I feel like I'm ready," he said. "I'm at point where I can focus and dedicate myself." The Boyd Gaming 300 is scheduled for Saturday, March 5 at LVMS (4 p.m. ET, FS1, PRN).