Elliott Sadler, Johnny Sauter and others comment on a wild night in Thunder Valley.
Get all the on-track times for the weekend's NASCAR action RELATED: Follow your picks in the Chase Battle Grid Presented by Toyota All times ET COMPLETE TV LISTINGS / BUY TICKETS FOR TEXAS / WEEKEND TRACK EVENTS This week, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series , NASCAR Nationwide Series and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series head to Texas Motor Speedway SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 2: PRE-RACE SCHEDULE -- 1:00:00 p.m.: NSCS Driver/Crew Chief Meeting -- 2:30:00 p.m.: NSCS Drivers Introductions -- 3:01:00 p.m.: Intro and Pledge of Allegiance by Boy Scouts -- 3:02:00 p.m.: Intro Presentation of Colors: Sheppard Air Force Base 82nd Training Wing Honor Guard -- 3:02:20 p.m.: Invocation by: Texas Alliance Raceway Ministries; Dr. Roger Marsh -- 3:02:45 p.m.: Intro National Anthem -- 3:03:00 p.m.: National Anthem: Air National Guard - Band of the Southwest -- 3:09:30 p.m.: "Drivers, Start Your Engines" by: Harlem Globetrotters -- 3:18:00 p.m.: Start of the AAA Texas 500 (334 Laps / 501 Miles on ESPN) ON TRACK -- 3 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA Texas 500 (334 laps, 501 miles), ESPN ( Follow live ) PRESS CONFERENCES ( Watch live ) -- 1:45 p.m.: Harlem Globetrotters (grand marshals) and Texas Rangers pitcher Derek Holland (honorary pace car driver) -- 6:45 p.m.: NSCS Post Race Press Conference THURSDAY, OCTOBER 30: ON TRACK -- 2-3 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series practice ( Get results ) -- 3:30-5 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series final practice ( Get results ) FRIDAY, OCTOBER 31: ON TRACK -- noon-12:50 p.m.: NASCAR Nationwide Series practice, FOX Sports 1 ( Get results ) -- 1-2:30 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice, FOX Sports 1 ( Get results ) -- 3:15 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Keystone Light Pole Qualifying, FOX Sports 1 ( Get results ) -- 4:30-6 p.m.: NASCAR Nationwide Series final practice, ESPN2 ( Get results ) -- 6:45 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying, ESPN2 ( Get results ) -- 8:30 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series WinStar World Casino and Resort 350 (147 laps, 220.5 miles), FOX Sports 1 ( Get results ) GARAGECAM PRESENTED BY MOBIL 1 ( Watch live ) -- 11:30 a.m.: Nationwide Series -- 12:30 p.m.: Sprint Cup Series PRESS CONFERENCES ( Watch live ) -- 11 a.m.: Joey Logano -- 11:30 a.m.: Elliott Sadler -- noon: Ryan Newman -- 12:15 p.m.: Jimmie Johnson -- 2:45 p.m.: Chase Elliott -- 3 p.m.: Denny Hamlin -- 7:45 p.m.: NSCS Post Qualifying Press Conference -- 10:45 p.m.: NCWTS Post Race Press Conference SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 1: ON TRACK -- 11-11:50 a.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice, FOX Sports 1 ( Get results ) -- 12:15 p.m.: NASCAR Nationwide Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying, FOX Sports 2 ( Get results ) -- 2-2:50 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series final practice FOX Sports 2 ( Get results ) -- 3:30 p.m.: NASCAR Nationwide Series O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge ( 200 laps, 300 miles), ESPN ( Get results ) PRESS CONFERENCES ( Watch live ) -- 10:30 a.m.: James Buescher -- 5:45 p.m.: NNS Post Race Press Conference MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView
Take a stroll through the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage with Matthew Dillner at Richmond International Raceway.
• 2014 Season In Review Also Features Year In Photos, Video Highlights Package FORT WORTH, Texas (December 16, 2014) - The year at Texas Motor Speedway opened with pyrotechnics celebrating the unveiling of the world's largest, high-definition LED video board in March and culminated in November with additional fireworks courtesy of the post-race melee involving combatants Brad Keselowski and Jeff Gordon in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA Texas 500 Eliminator 8 Chase race. There also was plenty of action and excitement in between as Texas Motor Speedway played host to its annual Duck Commander 500 NASCAR doubleheader in April, Firestone 600 INDYCAR/NASCAR twin bill in June and played host to its inaugural Red Bull Air Race World Championship event in September. The Texas Motor Speedway 2014 Season In Review recaps those major event weekends, in addition to the momentous "Big Hoss TV" unveiling, while the accompanying Texas Motor Speedway Year in Photos captures all those key moments in addition to other noteworthy speedway-related events throughout the year. The Texas Motor Speedway Year in Photos features 90 images - primarily from the speedway's official photo agency Getty Images - that were chosen for their significance and/or artistic value and are presented in chronological order. A three-minute video recap of the top on-track moments, including the AAA Texas 500 post-race skirmish, also is available in HD by clicking here. All photos and video are free for media outlets to utilize, especially for their year-end, wrap-ups and can be previewed by visiting www.texasmotorspeedway.com or downloaded by visiting www.image.net/tmsinreview2014 . Let's take a look back: "Big Hoss TV" Unveiling / Wednesday, March 19 The Skinny: The world's largest, high-definition LED video board is unveiled amid fanfare and will be one of the most impactful fan enhancements in the history of Texas Motor Speedway and the world of motorsports. The Recap: Texas Motor Speedway unveiled the world's largest, high-definition LED video board in grand fashion as the evening featured fireworks, motorsports stars, reality television celebrities, dignitaries and the showing of an episode from A&E's hit reality show "Duck Dynasty" for more than 8,000 fans situated in the infield of the world-class sports facility. The official debut of the Panasonic-built "Big Hoss TV" was part of a star-studded evening that included appearances by Duck Commander CEO and "Duck Dynasty" star Willie Robertson and his wife, Korie, along with the heralded racing duo of NASCAR's Kyle Busch and INDYCAR's Helio Castroneves. Also in attendance were dignitaries such as NASCAR President Mike Helton, Hulman & Co. CEO Mark Miles, Panasonic Eco Solutions North America Vice President Richard Ballard, Speedway Motorsports, Inc. Chairman Bruton Smith, SMI President and COO Marcus Smith and Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price. Positioned in the middle of the backstretch and stretching 218 feet wide by 94.6 feet tall, "Big Hoss TV" features 20,633.64 square feet of HD LED imagery that contains 281 trillion colors. The video board, constructed in just four months, surpassed fellow Speedway Motorsports, Inc. facility Charlotte Motor Speedway (16,000 square feet) as the Guinness World Record holder for the world's largest HD LED video board. The size of "Big Hoss TV" is staggering as it is 79 percent larger than the video board at AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys, which is 11,520 square feet. "It is the ultimate fan amenity," Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage said. "To have the biggest one in the world, that's just one of those 'Everything is Bigger in Texas' stories that we are really proud to be a part of." NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Duck Commander 500 / Monday, April 7 The Skinny: Rain forces a Monday matinee for only the third time in speedway history and Joey Logano wins the Duck Commander 500 for an automatic berth in the reformatted Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup . The Recap: With Duck Commander on board as the title sponsor and the "Duck Dynasty" stars on hand en masse, the weather was more conducive for duck hunting that NASCAR racing. The Duck Commander 500 , moved from its Saturday night slot to Sunday afternoon to avoid a conflict with the NCAA Final Four men's college basketball tourney being in Arlington, was washed out due to continual rain showers and rescheduled for a Monday matinee. It was just the third time in Texas Motor Speedway 's 18-year history that a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race was run on Monday due to inclement weather, the most recent coming in 2010 when both the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series races were run on the same day. Penske Racing's Joey Logano punched his ticket for a berth in the restructured Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup format after surviving a green/white-checkered finish to win the Duck Commander 500 . Logano was cruising to victory with a two-second lead over teammate Brad Keselowski with just over one lap remaining in the scheduled 334-lap event, but a caution for debris forced a two-lap overtime shootout. Logano restarted third after pitting for four tires while Jeff Gordon and Brian Vickers opted for two tires and restarted first and second, respectively. Gordon held off Logano on the first lap, but Logano got a strong run inside on the frontstretch and was able to overtake him in Turn 1 and pull away to a 0.476 of a second margin of victory in the race that was extended to 340 laps. The victory was Logano's first since August of 2013 at Michigan and the fourth of his career. It also was his first Sprint Cup win at Texas Motor Speedway , which was highlighted by him becoming the youngest Cup winner in TMS history at 23 years, 10 months and 14 days. NASCAR Nationwide Series O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 / Friday, April 4 The Skinny: Rookie Chase Elliott , the 18-year-old son of NASCAR great Bill Elliott , lands his first career Nationwide Series victory in the O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 to become the second-youngest winner in series history. The Recap: Nationwide Series O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 provided a historic milestone for a second-generation NASCAR driver and a glimpse into the talent that would flourish and lead to a series championship. Rookie Chase Elliott , the 18-year-old high school senior and son of NASCAR great Bill Elliott , needed just six starts in the Nationwide Series for his first career win that came in the O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 . Elliott made a bold move on the high side of Kevin Harvick in the elbow of the frontstretch to take the lead on Lap 185 and then held on for a 2.251-second victory over Kyle Busch in the 200 -lap event. Elliott became the second-youngest winner in series history at 18 years, 4 months and 8 days. Verizon IndyCar Series Firestone 600 / Saturday, June 7 The Skinny: Will Power's late pit lane penalty opens the door for Ed Carpenter to capture the Firestone 600 and become the first American winner at TMS since Sam Hornish Jr . in 2007. The Recap: The annual INDYCAR/NASCAR summer doubleheader yielded two first-time Texas Motor Speedway winners as Matt Crafton won the Camping World Truck Series WinStar World Casino 350 and Ed Carpenter was victorious in the Verizon IndyCar Series Firestone 600. Carpenter took advantage of a strong second-half race performance and a critical late pit lane penalty by Will Power to record his first series victory since 2012 in the Firestone 600. The victory was the third of Carpenter's career and his first since winning the 2012 season finale at Fontana. In his previous 12 starts at Texas Motor Speedway , he had just one top-five finish and led one lap (2009) before breaking through to become the first American to win at Texas since Sam Hornish Jr . in 2007. Carpenter led 66 of the final 67 laps of the 248-lap event and avoided a potential shootout for the win with Power, who was running second when he was caught speeding in pit lane on his final green-flag pit stop. With 36 to go, Carpenter and Power pitted together and came out 1-2, but Power received a drive-thru penalty for speeding and fell a lap down. Carpenter suddenly had a nine-plus second cushion over second-place Tony Kanaan and was coasting to victory with an 18.5-second lead before a final caution came out with seven laps remaining. The race became a two-lap shootout and Carpenter was able to stave off Juan Pablo Montoya and the hard-charging Power, who moved from sixth to second and finished 0.52 of a second behind Carpenter. NASCAR Camping World Truck Series WinStar World Casino & Resort 400 / Friday, June 6 The Skinny: Defending Camping World Truck Series champ Matt Crafton snaps a 26-race winless streak at TMS with a dominant victory in the WinStar World Casino & Resort 400. The Recap: Defending NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Matt Crafton had it easy compared to Verizon IndyCar Series driver Ed Carpenter in earning his first career win at Texas Motor Speedway . He led a career-best 118 laps en route to the victory in the WinStar World Casino & Resort 400 that snapped a 26-race winless streak at the speedway. Crafton led 118 of the 167 laps - the most he led in a single race in his 14-year career - and cruised to a 13.302-second victory over runner-up Justin Lofton . It was the fifth win of Crafton's career and second of the season, marking the first time in his career that he had recorded multiple wins in a season. His dominant performance established a track record for largest margin of victory in that series, eclipsing the previous mark of 11.817 seconds set by Dennis Setzer in this event in 2004. Red Bull Air Race World Championship / Saturday, Sept. 6, & Sunday, Sept. 7 The Skinny: Texas Motor Speedway plays host to the first race in the United States since 2010 for the Red Bull Air Race World Championship, which returned to competition after a three-year hiatus. The Recap: The Red Bull Air Race World Championship made its return to the United States for the first time since 2010 as Texas Motor Speedway played host to the sixth stage of the eight-event international plane racing series. Before a crowd of more than 20,000 for the first of two U.S. stops, Frenchman Nicolas Ivanoff captured his first victory of the season in the elite Master Class on the challenging, seven air gate, 3.7-mile course that was built in the infield of the motorsports venue. Ivanoff posted an individual two-lap run of 54.118 seconds to defeat Great Britain's Nigel Lamb, Canada's Pete McLeod and Germany's Matthias Dolderer in the Final 4 showdown on Sunday. Ivanoff gave his country a sweep of the weekend competition as fellow Frenchman Mikael Brageot won the Challenger Cup race the day prior. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA Texas 500 / Sunday, Nov. 2 The Skinny: A post-race confrontation between Jeff Gordon and Brad Keselowski and ensuing melee steals national headlines from six-time series champion Jimmie Johnson winning the AAA Texas 500 for a third year in a row. The Recap : With the remaining eight Chase for NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers looking to win the AAA Texas 500 and automatically advance to the championship round, six-time series champion Jimmie Johnson played the role of spoiler as he won the Eliminator 8 race in a dramatic second green/white-checkered overtime finish. Johnson, eliminated from championship contention in the previous round, won the AAA Texas 500 for a record third consecutive year, but it was the post-race scuffle that made national headlines the following day. While Johnson was celebrating his track-record fourth Cup win with burnouts on the frontstretch, chaos ensued on pit lane after an angry Jeff Gordon confronted Brad Keselowski and a fray quickly developed between the Chase contenders. Fellow Chase competitor Kevin Harvick pushed Keselowski while Gordon was jawing with him and the situation quickly escalated as the crews got involved and transformed into a melee. The disagreement stemmed from the first GWC finish, where Gordon took the restart with the lead and Johnson beside him on the front row. Johnson grabbed the lead when a bold move by Keselowski resulted in contact with Gordon, which ultimately led to a flat tire, contact with the wall and a 29th-place finish that would derail his title aspirations. The caution flew for Gordon that set up the second GWC finish, where Keselowski found himself lining up front against the leader Johnson on the restart. Johnson, on the inside, maintained the lead on the restart while Keselowski found himself also trying to fend off a charging Harvick. Harvick got past Keselowski on that lap but didn't have enough time to chase down Johnson, who won by 0.513 of a second for his fourth victory of the season and 70th of his career. Johnson led nine times for 191 laps, but a record 13 cautions continually bunched the field as well as changed race strategies to give a number of drivers a shot at the victory.Johnson, Harvick and Keselowski took the top three positions, respectively, while Kyle Busch , who was looking to sweep all three NASCAR races after truck and Nationwide wins earlier, finished fourth. NASCAR Nationwide Series O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge / Saturday, Nov. 1 The Skinny: Kyle Busch gives Joe Gibbs Racing its 100th career Nationwide Series win and sets his sights on rare NASCAR tripleheader weekend sweep after winning the O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge . The Recap: Kyle Busch added to the weekend drama and intrigue when he secured the second leg of a rare NASCAR tripleheader weekend sweep with a win in the Nationwide Series O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge . Busch completed the Nationwide Series/ Camping World Truck Series sweep for the second time in his career at Texas Motor Speedway , with the first coming in the fall of 2009. That only left Sunday's AAA Texas 500 as the missing prize for the triple, which had only been accomplished by Busch (Bristol 2010) in the history of NASCAR. Busch extended his record for career Nationwide Series victories at Texas Motor Speedway by adding his seventh with a 1.562-second win over Joey Logano . Busch, who led six times for a race-high 116 laps, and Logano, who led five times for 59 laps, exchanged the lead six times over the final 85 laps in the 200 -lap event before Busch took control late. It also was his seventh NNS victory of the season, 70th in his career and a milestone 100th for Joe Gibbs Racing . NASCAR Camping World Truck Series WinStar World Casino & Resort 350 / Friday, Oct. 31 The Skinny: Kyle Busch wins the WinStar World Casino & Resort 350 as Kyle Busch Motorsports ties the Camping World Truck Series record for most victories in a season. The Recap: Kyle Busch , competing in all three NASCAR races during the weekend and chasing a rare sweep, endured a green/white-checkered overtime finish to secure the first leg with a victory in the WinStar World Casino & Resort 350. Busch, who led a race-high 80 of 152 laps, was cruising to victory when two late cautions put a scare into his bid to secure his seventh win in just nine NCWTS starts this season. Following the final caution that led to the two-lap shootout, Busch got a strong restart on the outside of leader German Quiroga and took command of the lead coming out of Turn 2. He was pulling away with one lap to go when Quiroga hit the wall in Turn 2 to force the conclusion of the final lap to finish under caution. Busch's series-leading seventh win was his third truck victory at Texas Motor Speedway that pushed his career total in the series to 42. It also was the 12th victory overall for Kyle Busch Motorsports in 20 starts this season, tying the series record for season victories set by Ultra Motorsports in 2001. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView
Kyle Busch, Kyle Larson, and Kevin Harvick talk about the finishing laps of the O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 at Texas Motor Speedway.
First decade in NASCAR includes five driver titles, nearly 300 wins RELATED: Enter Chase Grid Live Sweepstakes " Play NASCAR Fantasy Live " Sign up for RaceView today The words came loud and fast over the public address system. "Who wants to see Chevy win today?" the announcer screamed, drawing plenty of cheers from the crowd assembled at Michigan International Speedway . "Who wants to see Ford win?" More cheers. The fans, it seemed, were split. And then came something new, as the crowd was asked how many were hoping for a Toyota victory at the 2-mile track. "You heard a lot of noise. Yeah, we were not the most popular manufacturer at Michigan," recalled Dave Wilson, president and general manager for Toyota Racing Development, USA. "But to win there was really special." The year was 2004, and it was the debut season for Toyota, the newest automaker in one of NASCAR's top three national series. Chevrolet, Dodge and Ford teams competing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series suddenly found a newcomer in their midst. They soon found a newcomer in Victory Lane as well, as Travis Kvapil , competing for Bang Racing, won the Line-X Spray-On Truck Bedliners 200 that July day at MIS. It was the first victory for Toyota in one of NASCAR's three national series. By season's end, the manufacturer had been to Victory Lane three more times. The following year, Toyota teams scored nine more victories, and in 2006, Todd Bodine claimed the series' championship with Germain Racing. Toyota also clinched its first manufacturer's title. But long before the championships, and likely even before Kvapil's win, the question was already being raised. "The icing on the cake, once we started racing in the Truck Series," Wilson said, "was when we started hearing from our own (TRD) team members and from the folks at the plant, from dealers -- and what they were saying was 'this is awesome; when are we going to go Cup racing? When are we going to go to the Show?' " It wasn't a "foregone conclusion" that Toyota would eventually begin supporting teams at the Sprint Cup level, he said. "We thought we would. We aspired to. We had to sell it into our management group that this was the right place for us." Ten years after its debut, it's a question that's no longer asked. Bang Racing's Travis Kvapil and members of Toyota Racing Development celebrate the manufacturer's first NASCAR national series at Michigan International Speedway in 2004 following a win with his Toyota Tundra in the Camping World Truck Series Courtesy of Toyota Racing • • • Two concerns hung over Toyota as it prepared to launch its NASCAR program. The first, coming from outside the company, was that the hugely successful group would simply come into the sport with an open wallet and purchase the best teams, drivers and crews. However, Toyota officials took just the opposite approach, in most cases reaching out to those who were interested in starting brand-new teams and building from the ground up. According to reports at the time, as many as 84 potential and existing teams either were courted by Toyota officials, or approached Toyota themselves as the automaker prepared to enter the Truck Series. Eventually, only four organizations were chosen -- Bang Racing, Darrell Waltrip Motorsports, Innovative Motorsports and Bill Davis Racing. That might have quelled some concerns, but it also meant the newest player would face tremendous growing pains. Two of the first four organizations, Bang Racing and Innovative Motorsports, would last only through that inaugural season. "They didn't want to buy their way into the sport; they wanted to have new owners," said Michael Waltrip , younger brother of Darrell and one of the first Sprint Cup team owners with Toyota backing. "They wanted to help grow the sport, and I think their presence here has grown the sport immensely. Not only new car owners like myself, but new fans, a different demographic of people who maybe drove Toyotas started watching NASCAR and maybe folks that were NASCAR fans decided that they thought it would be OK to drive a Toyota since Toyota was here." The second concern came from within -- building acceptance in what is still considered a uniquely American sport. Toyota officials knew there would be some backlash from some fans. "We did a lot of research," Wilson said. "We talked to a lot of fans before we ever turned a wheel in this sport. Our management was very sensitive to how we overcome this potential resistance that the fan base may have to a 'foreign' company. "We had a certain reputation, whether it was perception or real, that we would come into the sport and spend too much money, that we would ruin the sport." Coming in through the Truck Series, he said, gave the company a chance "to just start building those relationships. Not just within the NASCAR community but within the NASCAR fan community." Tom DeLoach, owner of Red Horse Racing, said the brand was "kind of semi-loved and kind of semi-unloved" when it arrived on the scene. DeLoach, who had been a co-owner of a Sprint Cup team before making the move into the Truck Series, had years of experience in working with global companies during his tenure with Mobil. "I worked internationally so I appreciate the international piece. When Mobil went into Formula One racing, we married up with Mercedes. So for me, an international manufacturer, I'm fine with it, because I see that we're in the international economy. So let's don't get all bent out of shape because of American vs. non-American. "You look at where the jobs are, where they build the cars, where you create the jobs. And if you go back and look at what Toyota's done, it was a lot of noise, but when you cut through the noise, it's 'Hey, the jobs are in the United States.' They build a lot of cars in the United States. That creates a lot of jobs in the United States. That always frustrated me when I saw that." In 2013, Matt Crafton (ThorSport Racing) became the third Toyota driver to win the Truck Series title. It was his first title and the manufacturer also won its sixth championship. Crafton, whose teams fielded Chevrolet entries until making the switch in 2012, said he saw first-hand what the addition of Toyota brought to the series, and to NASCAR. "I was on the other side of the fence at that point," Crafton said. "One of the things ... I had seen was in the previous seasons before Toyota came in, the other manufacturers had pulled back so much. We didn't get hardly anything. They did help us a little, but not much. As soon as Toyota came in, (the other manufacturers) stepped it up. Because they didn't want to have the new kid on the block come in and beat them up. I saw that. It was huge. "Even when I wasn't driving for Toyota, I said it was great because it made everyone else step up their support." Jason Leffler drives his Braun Racing NASCAR Nationwide Series Toyota Camry to victory in 2007 at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis for the manufacturer's first Nationwide win. Courtesy of Toyota Racing • • • The 2007 racing season was one of change for NASCAR. Not only was the Sprint Cup Series debuting a new car, labeled the Car of Tomorrow, for the first time, but Toyota was joining the ranks of Nationwide and Sprint Cup teams as well. The company's approach hadn't changed -- find new owners and build from the ground up. For Sprint Cup, that meant aligning with Michael Waltrip Racing and Red Bull Racing. A third team, Bill Davis Racing, was the lone group already in the sport, and made the switch from Dodge to Toyota. "They paid a price for that (approach)," said MWR driver Brian Vickers . "It took a while for teams like Red Bull and MWR to really get going. But ... I think they earned a lot of respect for doing that, and if they didn't, they should have. Anyone that didn't respect that just probably wasn't ... you weren't going to get them anyway. Their mind was already made up." While Toyota teams had 13 victories and won 17 poles in the Truck Series in '07, as well as a pair of wins and four poles in Nationwide, the Sprint Cup efforts produced only a pair of top-five finishes. But from a timing standpoint, the move into Nationwide and Cup was on target, according to Wilson. "This was us working in concert with NASCAR," he said. "We had a timeline. We came into Nationwide and Cup in the same year. I remember having the conversation with NASCAR; there may have been a consideration to push our entry back one year because ... the COT came on board (that year). "It would have been cleaner, and less expensive for us, to come in in 2008. But NASCAR wanted us there in '07. We wanted to be there in '07. But it really came together pretty much as we hoped it would." Then, in 2008, Toyota added another team to its roster -- Joe Gibbs Racing . Four races into the new season, JGR driver Kyle Busch scored the first Sprint Cup victory for Toyota, winning the Kobalt Tools 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway . "That was special," Wilson said. "It was first Cup win, that's a given, but really behind that, what makes it special is that Joe Gibbs, his family, his organization, they took a leap of faith. This is an organization that had already won three national championships with Chevy, had been with Chevy for 14 years. Certainly through 2007, we hadn't established ourselves; we were learning, learning about what it was going to take to win. "To have that validation, to put those guys in the winner's circle, I think Kyle won eight races that year, there was a tremendous sense of validation with that." For Gibbs, the switch from Chevrolet to Toyota wasn't made in haste. The team owner is fiercely loyal to the organization's sponsors, and aligning with Toyota was a huge move. "I think what made it difficult was we had 15 years with GM," said Gibbs. "You go through so many things when you're in a racing program -- there are extreme highs, extreme lows, you win championships. So you develop all those relationships and partnerships, so it's hard when you've got to make a decision like that. "But we felt like after analyzing it, if you really look at the lineup inside GM, Rick Hendrick ( Hendrick Motorsports ) was in there and had won championships, Childress ( Richard Childress Racing ) had won many championships, and had been there longer than we had. We felt like moving to Toyota -- this is a very competitive world -- it gave us a better chance to distinguish ourselves and maybe be an elite team for a manufacturer that racing means a lot to. "Certainly I think this partnership for us has been great. It was the right decision; we all feel that, way, a hard one but the right one." Joe Gibbs Racing driver Kyle Busch celebrates Toyota's first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory in 2008 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Courtesy of Getty Images • • • Today, Toyota supports seven organizations fielding 18 teams in one or more of NASCAR's top series -- Sprint Cup, Nationwide and the Camping World Truck Series. In 10 years, those teams have combined for 281 victories, five driver championships and nine manufacturer titles. Although they've yet to walk away with the biggest prize, a Sprint Cup championship, Toyota drivers have finished second in the standings three times in the last four years. "This isn't something we try on for size," Wilson said. "NASCAR isn't going away. For us, where I knew that we did our job in getting that understanding is 2004, our first in the Truck Series, ... at the time our president Mr. (Yukitoshi) Funo coined the phrase that we will be in NASCAR for 100 years. "It's a figurative statement. ... It's an understanding of the sport and it's an understanding of the cultural relevance that the sport has in this country. It has nothing to do with whether we stay or go but as long as NASCAR is around, we're going to be around. That's very much the mentality." Oh you know just hanging out @toyotaracing pitpass waiting for @BubbaWallace #ItsBristolBaby pic.twitter.com/0w2RqFPME1 — Megan (@mnreed6) August 20, 2014 • First season of competition: 2007 • First pole: July 1, 2007, Dave Blaney, Bill Davis Racing, New Hampshire Motor Speedway • First win: March 9, 2008, Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing, Atlanta Motor Speedway • Driver championships: 0 • Manufacturer championships: 0 • Wins in series: 65 (through Sept. 3, 2014) • First season of competition: 2007 • First pole: Feb. 24, 2007, Dave Blaney, Braun Racing, Auto Club Speedway • First win: July 28, 2007, Jason Leffler, Braun Racing, O'Reilly Raceway Park (Indianapolis) • Driver championships: 1 (Kyle Busch, 2009) • Manufacturer championships: 3 (2008, '09, '10) • Wins in series: 93 (through Sept. 3, 2014) • First season of competition: 2004 • First pole: March 13, 2004, David Reutimann, Darrell Waltrip Motorsports, Atlanta Motor Speedway • First win: July 31, 2004, Travis Kvapil, Bang Racing, Michigan International Speedway • Driver championships: 4 (Todd Bodine, 2006, '10; Johnny Benson, '08; Matt Crafton, '13) • Manufacturer championships: 6 ('06, '07, '08, '09, '10, '13) • Wins in series: 123 (through Sept. 3, 2014)
Post-Race Reactions by Austin Dillon, Dale Earnhardt Jr, Brian Vickers, Sam Hornish Jr and Justin Allgaier after the O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 at Texas Motor Speedway.
Illness sidelines Nationwide regular so Cup driver steps in RELATED: Play NASCAR Fantasy Live " Sign up for RaceView today FORT WORTH, Texas -- Clint Bowyer had plans to go shopping after the final NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice on Saturday at Texas Motor Speedway , but instead he relieved an ill Elliott Sadler and finished ninth in the NASCAR Nationwide Series ' O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge . "Yeah, I was going to buy a pair of cowboy boots at the stockyards," Bowyer said of his previous plans for the day. "I didn't win a cowboy hat -- so I'm just out of luck." But it was a good thing for Joe Gibbs Racing that Bowyer, a fellow Toyota driver, didn't make his trip to the Western stores and was available in a pinch. Sadler had been battling a stomach issue all day and JGR didn't have many other options since Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth were already participating in the race. Sadler managed to start in the car in order to be eligible for points, but after a caution on Lap 7 he drove to pit road and made the switch. After Sadler got out of the car he sat slumped on the pit-road wall before being driven away on a golf cart. But thanks to Bowyer's efforts, Sadler stayed within striking distance (20 points) of Regan Smith for second place in the Nationwide standings. Joe Gibbs stopped by after the race to shake Bowyer's hand and say thanks, and J.D. Gibbs also was there to give Bowyer a hearty pat on the back. Bowyer appeared to have a shot to pick up the win for Sadler when he got as high as fourth place after moving up three spots during a pit stop on Lap 131 of 200 . Unfortunately for him, though, the car began to get loose in the later stages of the race and he dropped as low as 11th before rebounding to get the top-10. At one point, Bowyer commented over team communications on how his feet weren't quite hitting the pedals right, an understandable problem considering the car wasn't his and wasn't set up to fit his body. "Nothing fit," Bowyer said. "I was having trouble; I'd killed it on pit road. There's just several things you know that are not your norm, so it kind of throws you out of sync." But overall, Bowyer said he had fun and it was worth forgoing his plans to help out a friend. "Well, you never want to get in, especially since Elliott has done a lot for me in my career and been a good friend over the years," Bowyer said. "I hate to see him sick like that. He was looking pretty rough." There was no immediate word on whether Sadler would be ready for next week's race in Phoenix . He is finishing his tenure with JGR after announcing Friday that he would join Roush Fenway Racing in 2015 in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView
Rookie increases his points lead to 48 with two races left RELATED: Play NASCAR Fantasy Live " Sign up for RaceView today FORT WORTH, Texas – It wasn't a win, but Chase Elliott called it "one of the best efforts we've given from start to finish." The JR Motorsports driver finished fourth in Saturday’s O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway , extending his NASCAR Nationwide Series points lead to 48 on teammate Regan Smith (11th). "To qualify 11th, to run around back 10th, 12th, 13th, and be able to drive up to the top five – that is so, so hard to do in the Nationwide Series," Elliott, 18, said. "Phenomenal pit stops gained us spots on pit road; Greg (Ives, crew chief) made the perfect adjustments and we were right there with them at the end. (We were) just a couple of steps short; we were gaining." Should he maintain his points advantage next week when the series moves to Phoenix International Raceway, Elliott would wrap up the series title with one race remaining. Elliott found himself battling an ill-handling car early as eventual race winner Kyle Busch ( Joe Gibbs Racing ) and runner-up Joey Logano ( Team Penske ) were dominating Saturday's 200 -lap event. Adjustments brought the No. 9 car to life and solid pit stops kept him from losing spots on pit road. "The back of the car wasn’t in the track," Elliott said. "As we ran, we fixed that and then we were too tight with the nose; Greg made some good adjustments to try and get the balance right, front to rear, and we finally got that. Then we tweaked the air pressure a little bit and we got the car where it was pretty quick. We were right there; we gained on the leaders a good bit that second to last run. They yarded me getting on and off pit road, just my mistake we need to do better there." The championship might be within his grasp, but Elliott, son of 1988 premier series champion Bill Elliott , says increasing his win total (he's a three-time winner this season) is the objective for his No. 9 team. "Just (running) one race at a time and trying to get some more wins before the year is over," he said. "That's our goal. I said before … the past couple of weeks we really haven't been where we wanted to be from the performance side, not getting the results that I feel like we can get as a team. "I don't think we've sat in the truck and discussed the points situation one time the whole season and I don’t think there's any need in starting now. We're just trying to step up and battle for the win. We're capable of doing it." Brian Scott ( Richard Childress Racing ) sits third in points, 63 behind Elliott while Elliott Sadler (JGR) sits 68 back and RCR's Ty Dillon (-75) round out the top five. 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
The Nationwide Series returns to action at Texas RELATED: Play NASCAR Fantasy Live " Sign up for RaceView today Entry # Driver Owner Crew chief Manufacturer Sponsor 1 01 Landon Cassill Johnny Davis Dave Fuge 14 Chevrolet TeamJDMotorsports.com 2 2 Brian Scott Richard Childress Phil Gould 14 Chevrolet Country Bob's Sauce 3 3 Ty Dillon Richard Childress Danny Stockman Jr 14 Chevrolet Bass Pro Shops 4 4 Jeffrey Earnhardt Gary Keller Gary Cogswell 14 Chevrolet teamjdmotorsports.com 5 5 Kevin Harvick(i) Rick Hendrick Ernie Cope 14 Chevrolet Hunt Brothers Pizza 6 6 Trevor Bayne Jack Roush Chad Norris 14 Ford AdvoCare 7 7 Regan Smith Kelley Earnhardt-Miller Ryan Pemberton 14 Chevrolet TaxSlayer.com 8 9 Chase Elliott Dale Earnhardt Jr Greg Ives 14 Chevrolet NAPA AUTO PARTS 9 10 Blake Koch Mark Smith Todd Myers 14 Toyota SupportMilitary.org 10 11 Elliott Sadler J D Gibbs Chris Gayle 14 Toyota OneMain Financial 11 12 Ryan Blaney(i) Roger Penske Greg Erwin 14 Ford Snap-On 12 14 Eric McClure Mark Smith Wes Ward 14 Toyota Hefty Ultimate / Reynolds Wrap 13 16 Ryan Reed Jack Roush Seth Barbour 14 Ford ADA Drive to Stop Diabetes presented by Lilly Diabetes 14 19 Mike Bliss Mark Smith Paul Clapprood 14 Toyota Tweaker Energy Shot 15 20 Matt Kenseth(i) Joe Gibbs Kevin Kidd 14 Toyota GameStop 16 22 Joey Logano(i) Roger Penske Jeremy Bullins 14 Ford Discount Tire 17 23 Robert Richardson Jr Robert Richardson Sr George Church 14 Chevrolet Willbros 18 25 John Wes Townley(i) Tony Townley Mike Ford 14 Toyota Zaxby's 19 28 J J Yeley James Whitener Steve Plattenberger 13 Dodge Texas 28 Spirits Stage 20 31 Dylan Kwasniewski Steve Turner Shannon Rursch 14 Chevrolet AccuDoc / Rockstar 21 33 Austin Dillon(i) Richard Childress Nick Harrison 14 Chevrolet TBD 22 39 Ryan Sieg Rod Sieg Kevin Starland 14 Chevrolet RSS Racing 23 40 Matt Dibenedetto Curtis Key Sr Kyle Symington 14 Chevrolet Curtis Key Plumbing 24 42 Kyle Larson(i) Harry Scott Jr Scott Zipadelli 14 Chevrolet Phillips Norelco 25 43 Dakoda Armstrong Richard Petty Philippe Lopez 14 Ford WinField 26 44 David Starr Mark Smith Greg Conner 14 Toyota Whataburger 27 46 Ryan Ellis Curtis Key Sr Gary Showalter 14 Chevrolet Curtis Key Plumbing 28 51 Jeremy Clements Tony Clements Ricky Pearson 14 Chevrolet Crescent Companies 29 52 Joey Gase Jimmy Means Tim Brown 14 Chevrolet TBA 30 54 Kyle Busch(i) J D Gibbs Adam Stevens 14 Toyota Monster Energy 31 55 Jamie Dick Jimmy Dick Mark Setzer 14 Chevrolet Viva Auto Group 32 60 Chris Buescher Jack Roush Scott Graves 14 Ford Bit O Honey Mustang 33 62 Brendan Gaughan Richard Childress Shane Wilson 14 Chevrolet Smokey Mountain Snuff 34 70 Derrike Cope Mary Louise Miller Bobby Burrell 14 Chevrolet YOUTHEORY 35 74 Mike Harmon Mike Harmon Gary Ritter 12 Dodge John II Concrete Const. 36 184 Chad Boat Billy Boat Dan Deeringhoff 14 Chevrolet Corvetteparts.net 37 87 Carlos Contreras Andrea Nemechek Steven Gray 14 Chevrolet RACETRAC Convenience Stores 38 89 Morgan Shepherd Morgan Shepherd Kevyn Rebolledo 14 Chevrolet Courtney Construction 39 190 Martin Roy Michelle Gosselin Mario Gosselin 14 Chevrolet TBA 40 93 Kevin Swindell Gregg Mixon Ken Evans 13 Dodge JGL Racing 41 98 Corey LaJoie(i) Fred Biagi Jon Hanson 14 Ford Medallion Financial/Smithfield 42 99 James Buescher Robby Benton Matthew Lucas 14 Toyota Rheem MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView