RELATED: Team transporter catches fire coming home from Kentucky DOVER, Del. -- It might be the oldest transporter in the garage. Hard to say, but if there's one older … Up front in the lounge area there are mirrors on the ceiling. The cabinet includes a stereo system that features a side-by-side cassette tape deck. The lone photo on the wall is an artist's rendering of the No. 52 entry. The car in the picture is sporting sponsorship from Alka-Seltzer. Maybe it's the oldest hauler, maybe not. But the white trailer used to move the Jimmy Means Racing entry from its shop in North Carolina to Dover International Speedway this weekend served its purpose. Called back into active duty after a fire destroyed the team's primary hauler, it's a throwback of sorts to an earlier era. "Watch your head when you go up there," team owner Jimmy Means advised. "This one's old school." Driver Joey Gase finished 21st in last Saturday's NASCAR XFINITY Series race and Means was headed back to North Carolina when a wheel bearing overheated and caught a tire on fire. The fire quickly spread into the hauler. RELATED: Dover race results "We had just stopped 30 miles up the road," Means said Saturday, "fueled up and I personally went around and laid my hand on all the hubs and they were normal." In the days after the incident, other teams reached out and offered assistance. Some offered to loan trailers. One Sprint Cup team owner told his group to give Means whatever he needed to make sure he made it to the next race. Friends and fans raised more than $10,000. Fortunately, help from the No. 22 Team Penske team, which stopped to help, lessened the damage done by the fire. "If it hadn’t been for them … we used up all the fire extinguishers, 42 bottles of water, coke soda, orange soda, ice by the handful," Means said. "We actually thought we had it out and it (flared) up again and we were all out of supplies. Watched it burn for about 15 or 20 minutes until the fire department got there. "At least they helped us keep it from burning the cars up. If they hadn't have stopped it would have burned the cars up for sure." Other than damage to the hauler itself, and the pit box used on pit road, most of the damage to the contents was smoke and water related. The cars, while looking the worse for wear, were salvageable. The trailer and pit box were not. Gase competed in Saturday's Hisense 200 at Dover in the same car he raced at Kentucky. "The cars, I'm amazed they weren't hurt," Means said. "They needed to be completely taken apart, everything painted and all that. They did get warm and from the water on them naturally they all rusted. Plastic strips to keep the heat and the air in (at the rear of the transporter) melted, all that went up in the air and just settled on everything. It was just a big mess. "It really didn't hurt the equipment that much other than just being filthy and water damage to some of it. We were fortunate that our radios were in the front … did get a little water damage but didn't get any intense heat." Prepping the back-up hauler, built in 1990, was a task in itself. It had been sitting idle for several years -- Means said he hadn't kept the license plates up to date and had to rush to the courthouse to pay three years' worth of taxes to get it back on the road. Volunteers joined in to help the team prepare for this week’s race. "Definitely a thrash to get it done," he said. "Actually, by the last day it came out better than we thought it was going to be. We were prepared to be here Friday morning; we loaded Wednesday night at 9:30. Thought that was a pretty good job. "Probably the average age of the crew helping us was 65. Anywhere from 78, 74, 65, 68 working on this stuff, getting it clean. Crew chief ( Tim Brown) did a whale of a job of getting everything cleaned up and hopefully putting on the truck what we needed to get through this weekend. That will give us a little more time to get this thing stocked so we can operate out of it the rest of the year." Gase called it "kind of the worst time possible for us for this to happen," but said after going through the car "as best we could," nothing seemed beyond repair. "We had a lot of guys come in, worked a lot of hours, even my girlfriend came in and helped get everything cleaned up," he said. "That was the hardest thing. But it was a group effort and I think we did pretty good to get it back and get it here." Gase's Donate Life Chevrolet started 28th Saturday as the field was set per the rulebook when qualifying was canceled. After a flat left rear early in the race, he finished 24th. It wasn't a win, but given all that the team had to overcome just to get to Dover, it was impressive just the same.
MORE: Revisiting one night in Richmond In the movie "The Replacements," quarterback Shane Falco discusses his biggest fear: quicksand. Basically, a snowball effect, where one thing goes wrong, then another and another until it's completely out of control. Well, that is what has happened with Michael Waltrip Racing over the past two years. The latest event: A P4 penalty that saw Clint Bowyer lose 25 driver championship points, Rob Kauffman lose 25 owner championship points and Bowyer's crew chief, Billy Scott, suspended for three races. This comes on top of last month's news that MWR would no longer field a full-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team and that the organization was allowing Clint Bowyer to pursue other opportunities for 2016. However, everything with the fall of MWR can be traced back to one fateful night in Richmond. NASCAR ruled that Michael Waltrip Racing manipulated the outcome of the final regular-season race at Richmond in 2013. Drivers were docked points, a penalty which took Martin Truex Jr . out of the Chase and put Ryan Newman in. The aftermath saw the sponsor of Truex's car, NAPA, leave MWR. NAPA would eventually end up sponsoring the JR Motorsports' NASCAR XFINITY Series ride for Chase Elliott in 2014 and 2015. Elliott instantly became a star in the series and won the XFINITY championship in '14. NAPA has committed to go with him as a primary sponsor as he moves to Cup ranks in 2016 with Hendrick Motorsports and will be wheeling Jeff Gordon 's No. 24 Chevrolet. With NAPA out, MWR elected to downsize to two full-time teams, leaving Truex as the odd man out. He landed at single-car Furniture Row Racing , which was fresh off making the Chase with Kurt Busch behind the wheel. Truex struggled in his first season with the team, but he has been solid in 2015, winning at Pocono and making the postseason. In 2012, Bowyer's best season, he had 10 top fives to go with his three wins. Since the Richmond incident in 2013, he has just nine top fives in 74 races. He also has a winless drought that is now at 105 races after New Hampshire. RELATED: MWR through the years This is not the first time that one decision has caused a ripple effect throughout a sport's landscape. One of the most famous examples of this is "The Curse of the Bambino." Legendary baseball player and Hall of Famer Babe Ruth had led the Boston Red Sox to three World Series titles. Ruth was sold to the New York Yankees in 1920, which would go on to become a heated rival for Boston. As legend has it, the owner of the Red Sox Harry Frazee used the money from the sale to finance a play, "No, No, Nanette." The deal reversed the fortunes of both teams. The Yankees became a powerhouse, winning the first four of their 27 World Series championships in club history. The Red Sox would go through a title drought of 86 years with misfortunate finding them in different ways, most notably the Bill Buckner misplay in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series. Boston did eventually win a World Series title in 2004 and won three titles in 10 years. ... In the 1984 NBA Draft, the Portland Trail Blazers selected big man Sam Bowie with the No. 2 pick, while passing up the chance to draft shooting guard Michael Jordan. The Chicago Bulls grabbed Jordan with the No. 3 pick and the rest is NBA history. Jordan went on to become of the best players, if not the best player, in NBA history and led the Bulls to six championships, which consisted of two three-peats. Bowie battled a number of injuries to his knees that didn't allow him to live up to the promise and potential Portland thought it had drafted. While Portland remained a consistent playoff presence up until 2004, the organization is still searching for its first title since 1977. Jordan even led the Bulls past Portland in the 1992 NBA Finals. Similar luck struck Portland when it selected big man Greg Oden with the No. 1 pick in the 2007 NBA Draft over Kevin Durant. Oden's professional career has been marred by knee issues, while Durant is one of the league's top talents. ... A neck injury to NFL superstar quarterback Peyton Manning sent a big ripple thoughout the league. The then-Indianapolis Colts quarterback wound up missing the entire 2011 season and the Colts suffered through a miserable year, ultimately landing the No. 1 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. Quarterback Andrew Luck was considered to be the top player available in that year's draft, but the Colts still had a rehabbing Manning, although he was owed a whopping $28 million roster bonus. Indianapolis made the decision to cut Manning and drafted Luck to be its new franchise quarterback. Luck has led the Colts to the playoffs in the first three seasons of his career. RELATED: NFL quarterback picks Dale Jr. to win the Chase Manning would go on to land in Denver, where he would make the Broncos instant Super Bowl contenders and power the Broncos to the playoffs the past three seasons. Manning's arrival in Denver paved the way for the team to trade Tim Tebow. The 2007 Heisman Trophy winner guided the Broncos guiding to a Wild Card Round win but he was dealt to the New York Jets months later. The Jets struggled to find ways to use him and he was released in April of 2013. With some of these cases, the fallout still continues and is subject to much debate. How would the Colts have been if they had held on to Manning? Would Tebow's career have turned out differently if Denver hadn't brought in Manning? How different would the past few years at MWR had been without the Richmond incident? Would a sponsor have backed Elliott so quickly and as a result, would his meteoric rise have happened? Those debates are part of the reason we talk about sports, to dream up the fantasy and hypothetical scenarios. But in the end it's those events that have a lasting effect on the sports we love.
Frances Flock shares the honors of inducting Tim Flock into the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
Frances Flock shares the whole story of Jocko Flocko and expresses her joy for seeing Tim inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
NASCAR Hall of Fame: Tim Flock
DARLINGTON, S.C. -- NASCAR competitors have driven with good luck charms for probably as long the sanctioning body has been in existence. A rabbit's foot here, a four-leaf clover there, lucky shoes for some, specific pre-race rituals for others. The lucky penny that rode with Dale Earnhardt to his lone victory in the Daytona 500 in 1998 can still be found glued to the dash of the familiar black No. 3 Chevrolet. After winning back-to-back Daytona 500 titles in 1994-95, former driver Sterling Marlin refused to vary from his pre-race routine leading up to the season-opening event. Marlin stayed in the same hotel, in the same room, wore the same T-shirt under his uniform and dined on the same pre-race meal -- a bologna sandwich and soft drink. More of an early marketing stunt than an attempt to reverse his fortunes on the race track, former series champion Tim Flock raced with a monkey named Jocko Flocko riding shotgun for several races in 1953. Which brings us to this weekend's Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway (Sunday, 7 p.m. ET, NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), and the Stock Car Racing Museum located on the grounds of the historic track. Among the several cars on display inside the museum is the race-winning entry from the very first Southern 500 held in 1950. Johnny Mantz, an open-wheel racer who made just 12 NASCAR starts between '50-'56, piloted the black No. 98 Plymouth. Burlington, North Carolina, businessman Hubert Westmoreland was the car's owner. Riding along with Mantz in the car that Labor Day was a child's doll that belonged to the daughter of Alvin Hawkins, a race promoter and flagman. According to reports, the team wanted to remove the doll before the start of the race -- how it got in there in the first place isn't known -- but Lottie Westmoreland, Hubert's wife, convinced them to leave it in the car for good luck. Mantz, in just his third NASCAR start, won by nine laps in a 75-car field that included future Hall of Famers Fireball Roberts, Lee Petty, Cotton Owens and Flock. The doll was taken out and placed in storage following the race, where it stayed forgotten for several years. When track officials donated the car to the museum in 1965, the story of the doll resurfaced; it was located and returned to its rightful place inside the car where it has remained all these years. An arm is missing and the shoes have disappeared as well. Time has taken its toll, understandable given her age. Sixty-five years after Darlington Raceway ushered in a new era in NASCAR and Johnny Mantz roared to a surprising victory, a child's toy is a silent reminder of yesterday.
DARLINGTON, S.C. (Sept. 5, 2015) -- The National Motorsports Press Association and Sprint are pleased to announce that voting for the 2015 NMPA Sprint Most Popular Driver award will open Sunday, September 6. The NMPA Sprint Most Popular Driver award is the only major NASCAR award determined solely by fan vote. The voting period opened at 12:01 a.m. ET Sunday and runs through 11:59 p.m. ET on Sunday, November 22. Fans can visit www.mostpopulardriver.com to cast their vote for this year's award. Votes will also be received via the NASCAR Mobile application. Since the award's inception in 1953, 19 drivers have won the award. NASCAR Hall of Famer Bill Elliott has won the award more than any other driver (16 times). Dale Earnhardt Jr . has won it the last 12 years in a row. Voting is limited to one vote per person per email address per day. Fans are encouraged to share their votes on Facebook and Twitter. The official Twitter hashtag for the NMPA Sprint Most Popular Driver Award is #SprintMPD. Eligible drivers for the award are those who have declared to compete for the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship. "The Most Popular Driver Award is one of the NMPA's most significant awards, and I'm very pleased to partner with Sprint again this year," said NMPA President Brian Nelson. "We expect the 2015 vote to be one of the biggest yet." The winner of this year's award will be announced during the NBC Sports Network broadcast of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Awards on Dec. 4 in Las Vegas. A $10,000 donation will be made to the winning driver's charity of choice. The Most Popular Driver award program is one of the longest-running awards presented each year by the National Motorsports Press Association. Previous winners of the NMPA Sprint Most Popular Driver Award: Year – Recipient 2014 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2013 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2012 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2011 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2010 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2009 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2008 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2007 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2006 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2005 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2004 – Dale Earnhardt Jr . 2003 – Dale Earnhardt, Jr. 2002 – Bill Elliott 2001 – Dale Earnhardt 2000 – Bill Elliott 1999 – Bill Elliott 1998 – Bill Elliott 1997 – Bill Elliott 1996 – Bill Elliott 1995 – Bill Elliott 1994 – Bill Elliott 1993 – Bill Elliott 1992 – Bill Elliott 1991 – Bill Elliott 1990 – Darrell Waltrip 1989 – Darrell Waltrip 1988 – Bill Elliott 1987 – Bill Elliott 1986 – Bill Elliott 1985 – Bill Elliott 1984 – Bill Elliott 1983 – Bobby Allison 1982 – Bobby Allison 1981 – Bobby Allison 1980 – David Pearson 1979 – David Pearson 1978 – Richard Petty 1977 – Richard Petty 1976 – Richard Petty 1975 – Richard Petty 1974 – Richard Petty 1973 – Bobby Allison 1972 – Bobby Allison 1971 – Bobby Allison 1970 – Richard Petty 1969 – Bobby Isaac 1968 – Richard Petty 1967 – Cale Yarborough 1966 – Darel Dieringer 1965 – Fred Lorenzen 1964 – Richard Petty 1963 – Fred Lorenzen 1962 – Richard Petty 1961 – Joe Weatherly 1960 – Rex White 1959 – Jack Smith 1958 – Glen Wood 1957 – Fireball Roberts 1956 – Curtis Turner 1955 – Tim Flock 1954 – Lee Petty 1953 – Lee Petty
RELATED: Part 1 " Part 2 " Part 3 MORE: Meet the 16 Chase crew chiefs This is the fourth in a series of four pit crew analysis pieces NASCAR.com will roll out this week as we preview the 2015 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup . For more pit crew news provided by PitTalks.com come back throughout the Chase. Hendrick Motorsports No. 24 Chevrolet for Jeff Gordon Pit Coach: Chris Burkey Front Changer: Scott Brzozowski Front Carrier: Dion Williams Jackman: John Gianatto Rear Changer: Chad Avritt Rear Carrier: Jared Erspamer Gas Man: Travis Gordon Strength : They pit for one of the greatest drivers of all time, and this crew would love to send Jeff Gordon off on a solid note at the end of his final full-time Sprint Cup season. They have two changers who are as fast as any two out there and a support team that is solid. Weakness : Early in the year this team was moving some crewmen around. They took a few weeks to look at some young talent at the front carrier, rear carrier and jack man positions. During this time, jackman Bailey Walker and HMS parted ways and John Gianatto took over full time. So the in-experience of this team might play a factor. Also, they took a lot of heat a few weeks back at Bristol over two loose wheels on the rear and getting over that will be key. Richard Childress Racing No. 31 Chevrolet for Ryan Newman Pit Crew: 31 Pit Coach: Eric Wilson Front Changer: Tim Sheets Front Carrier: J.D. Holcum Jackman: Adam Lewis Rear Changer: Jake Lind Rear Carrier: Brad Robinson Gas Man: Cruz Gonzalez Strength : This team has some very high-end speed. They have been a top 15 crew for most of the year and come Chase time, they must find that top-end speed in order to compete. This is the same group that helped Newman finish second in last year's Chase Weakness : Last year they were a team that was running fast times all year at every track. This year they've fallen off a little bit on the consistency side. Make no mistake ... this team is fast, but being fast sometimes and being fast all the time are two different things. Richard Childress Racing No. 27 for Paul Menard Pit Coach: Eric Wilson Front Changer: Jeff Cordero Front Carrier: Matt Donley Jackman: Sam Abney Rear Changer: Aaron Smith Rear Carrier: Ray Wright Gas Man: Matt Krueter Strength : This is the same group that has pitted the No. 27 all year. They understand their driver and have veteran leadership within the back of their car with Smith, Wright and Krueter. Weakness : It's been a while since they were in contention for a win, and it's hard to get up for each race when your not used to pitting up front. Michael Waltrip Racing No. 15 Toyota for Clint Bowyer Pit Coach: Walt Smith Front Changer: Terry Spalding Front Carrier: Allen Steel Jackman: Brian Chase Rear Changer: Lee Cunningham Rear Carrier: PJ Brody Gas Man: Evan Marchall Strength : They have a ton of leadership with Spalding and Chase and have plenty of talent in the rear with Brody and Cunningham. They have the ability to go low on any stop. Weakness : They haven't been running up front all year, and pitting under the pressure that the Chase provides will test this group. They have had races where they've been a top team all day and they've had races where you didn't know they were there. This would be a scary crew to handicap one way or the other.
A statistical look ahead to the 21st race of the Sprint Cup season DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Below is a look at some of the top statistical performers at Pocono Raceway in Pocono, Pennsylvania going into the WINDOWS 10 400 on August 2 (1:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN). POCONO-SPECIFIC STATISTICS Kurt Busch (No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet) · Two wins, 12 top fives, 16 top 10s; two poles · Average finish of 12.421, eighth-best · Average Running Position of 10.246, second-best · Driver Rating of 105.9, third-best · 332 Fastest Laps Run, sixth-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.733, second-fastest · 2659 Laps in the Top 15 (77.0), second-most · 774 Quality Passes, seventh-most Dale Earnhardt Jr (No. 88 MICROSOFT Chevrolet) · Two wins, nine top fives, 13 top 10s; one pole · Average finish of 15.900, 11th-best · Average Running Position of 14.002, 10th-best · Driver Rating of 92.6, ninth-best · 102 Fastest Laps Run, third-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.237, eighth-fastest · 2286 Laps in the Top 15 (63.3), eighth-most · 727 Quality Passes, eighth-most Carl Edwards (No. 19 STANLEY Toyota) · Two wins, five top fives, eight top 10s · Average finish of 15.500, 10th-best · Average Running Position of 14.826, 13th-best · Driver Rating of 94.2, eighth-best · 176 Fastest Laps Run, fourth-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.224, ninth-fastest · 2262 Laps in the Top 15 (62.6), 10th-most · 712 Quality Passes, ninth-most Jeff Gordon (No. 24 AARP Member Advantages Chevrolet) · Six wins, 19 top fives, 31 top 10s; two poles · Average finish of 9.650, second-best · Average Running Position of 9.916, series-best · Driver Rating of 103.5, fourth-best · 169 Fastest Laps Run, 12th-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.625, fifth-fastest · 2777 Laps in the Top 15 (76.9), third-most · 885 Quality Passes, series-most Denny Hamlin (No. 11 FedEx Office Toyota) · Four wins, nine top fives, 13 top 10s; three poles · Average finish of 11.889, seventh-best · Average Running Position of 10.844, fourth-best · Driver Rating of 108.3, series-best · 437 Fastest Laps Run, seventh-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.806, series-fastest · 2543 Laps in the Top 15 (79.3), series-most · 685 Quality Passes, 10th-most Kevin Harvick (No. 4 Jimmy John's/Budweiser Chevrolet) · Seven top fives, 11 top 10s · Average finish of 10.600, fifth-best · Average Running Position of 13.743, eighth-best · Driver Rating of 91.9, 11th-best · 63 Fastest Laps Run, eighth-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.159, 10th-fastest · 2277 Laps in the Top 15 (63.0), ninth-most · 789 Quality Passes, sixth-most Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Kobalt Tools Chevrolet) · Three wins, 11 top fives, 18 top 10s; three poles · Average finish of 10.500, third-best · Average Running Position of 10.487, third-best · Driver Rating of 106.9, second-best · 273 Fastest Laps Run, 10th-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.708, third-fastest · 2774 Laps in the Top 15 (76.8), fourth-most · 861 Quality Passes, fourth-most Kasey Kahne (No. 5 Aquafina Chevrolet) · Two wins, five top fives, eight top 10s; two poles · Average finish of 18.750, 13th-best · Average Running Position of 14.622, 11th-best · Driver Rating of 92.1, 10th-best · 306 Fastest Laps Run, series-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.436, sixth-fastest · 2199 Laps in the Top 15 (60.9), 11th-most · 804 Quality Passes, fifth-most Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Alliance Truck Parts Ford) · One win, three top fives, four top 10s · Average finish of 13.400, ninth-best · Average Running Position of 14.786, 12th-best · Driver Rating of 90.8, 12th-best · 96 Fastest Laps Run, fifth-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 161.894, 13th-fastest · 852 Laps in the Top 15 (50.1), 13th-most · 306 Quality Passes, 12th-most Kyle Larson (No. 42 Suave Men Chevrolet) · One top five, two top 10s; one pole · Average finish of 8.000, series-best · Average Running Position of 12.672, seventh-best · Driver Rating of 95.7, sixth-best · 2 Fastest Laps Run, 13th-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.690, fourth-fastest · 230 Laps in the Top 15 (71.9), seventh-most · 87 Quality Passes, 13th-most Joey Logano (No. 22 Shell Pennzoil Ford) · One win, three top fives, five top 10s; two poles · Average finish of 16.583, 12th-best · Average Running Position of 13.811, ninth-best · Driver Rating of 88.9, 13th-best · 61 Fastest Laps Run, second-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.097, 12th-fastest · 1190 Laps in the Top 15 (56.6), 12th-most · 456 Quality Passes, 11th-most Ryan Newman (No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet) · One win, nine top fives, 14 top 10s; two poles · Average finish of 10.500, fourth-best · Average Running Position of 11.426, fifth-best · Driver Rating of 95.3, seventh-best · 36 Fastest Laps Run, 11th-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.135, 11th-fastest · 2689 Laps in the Top 15 (74.4), fifth-most · 883 Quality Passes, second-most Tony Stewart (No. 14 Rush Truck Centers/Mobil 1 Chevrolet) · Two wins, 12 top fives, 22 top 10s; two poles · Average finish of 10.600, sixth-best · Average Running Position of 12.223, sixth-best · Driver Rating of 97.6, fifth-best · 99 Fastest Laps Run, ninth-best · Average Green Flag Speed of 162.319, seventh-fastest · 2619 Laps in the Top 15 (72.5), sixth-most · 880 Quality Passes, third-most Driver Races Poles Wins Top Fives Top 10s DNFs Average Finish Driver Rating 1 Kevin Harvick 29 0 0 7 11 2 13.2 91.9 2 Joey Logano 13 2 1 3 5 1 15.6 88.9 3 Dale Earnhardt Jr 31 1 2 9 13 1 15.2 92.6 4 Jimmie Johnson 27 3 3 11 18 1 9.6 106.9 5 Martin Truex Jr 19 0 1 3 7 0 15.1 80.4 6 Brad Keselowski 11 0 1 3 4 0 13.7 90.8 7 Matt Kenseth 31 0 0 3 11 1 15.7 86.7 8 Kurt Busch 28 2 2 12 16 5 14.4 105.9 9 Jamie McMurray 25 1 0 0 7 3 19.3 73.1 10 Denny Hamlin 19 3 4 9 13 2 11.8 108.3 11 Jeff Gordon 45 2 6 19 31 5 10 103.5 12 Ryan Newman 27 2 1 9 14 3 12.4 95.3 13 Paul Menard 17 0 0 0 2 1 23.6 64.6 14 Kasey Kahne 23 2 2 5 8 3 17.6 92.1 15 Clint Bowyer 19 0 0 2 8 0 14.6 82.8 16 Carl Edwards 21 0 2 5 8 1 15.5 94.2 * – Based on last 21 races at Pocono Raceway (2005 – 2015). Kyle Busch ’s Chase Eligibility 30th Justin Allgaier 317 Rank Driver Wins Points Points From 30th 31 Cole Whitt 0 314 -3 32 Kyle Busch 4 294 -23 33 Brett Moffitt # 0 266 -51 34 Alex Bowman 0 245 -72 35 Michael Annett 0 230 -87 36 Matt DiBenedetto # 0 205 -112 37 Josh Wise 0 186 -131 38 Michael McDowell 0 124 -193 39 Jeb Burton 0 111 -206 40 Alex Kennedy 0 71 -246 * To be eligible for the Chase, the driver must be in the top 30 of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings following race number 26. Pocono Raceway Data Season Race #: 21 of 36 (08-02-15) Track Size : 2.5-miles Banking/Turn 1 : 14 degrees Banking/Turn 2 : 8 degrees Banking/Turn 3 : 6 degrees Frontstretch Length : 3,740 feet Backstretch Length : 3,055 feet Shortstretch Length : 1,780 feet Race Length : 160 laps / 400 miles Top 10 Driver Ratings at Pocono Denny Hamlin ............................ 108.3 Jimmie Johnson ........................ 106.9 Kurt Busch ................................ 105.9 Jeff Gordon .............................. 103.5 Tony Stewart ............................... 97.6 Kyle Larson ................................ 95.7 Ryan Newman ............................. 95.3 Carl Edwards .............................. 94.2 Dale Earnhardt Jr ........................ 92.6 Kasey Kahne .............................. 92.1 Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2015 races (21 total) among active drivers at Pocono Raceway. Qualifying/Race Data 2014 pole winner : Kyle Larson , Chevrolet 183.438 mph, 49.063 secs, 08-01-14 2014 race winner : Dale Earnhardt Jr ., Chevrolet 127.411 mph, (03:08:22), 08-03-14 Track qualifying record: Kyle Larson , Chevrolet 183.438 mph, 49.610 secs, 08-03-14 Track race record: Jeff Gordon , Chevrolet 145.384 mph, (03:26:21), 06-12-11 At Pocono Raceway: History · Opened in 1968 as a three-quarter-mile track, Pocono Raceway held the first race on the 2.5-mile track in 1971. · The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race was in 1974 – won by Richard Petty , Dodge, 115.593 mph, 08/04/1974. · The 2.5-mile track was repaved during the fall of 2011. · 2012 marked the first season the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono were scheduled for 400 miles. Prior to 2012 all NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races were 500 miles at Pocono Raceway. Starts · There have been 75 NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Pocono Raceway, one race from 1974 through 1981, and two per year since. · 327 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway; 229 in more than one. · Ricky Rudd leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in starts at Pocono with 55. · Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 45 starts (eighth most all-time) at Pocono; followed by Tony Stewart with 33 starts. · Denny Hamlin (19 starts) leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average starting position at Pocono with a 6.632. Poles · 40 drivers have posted Coors Light poles at Pocono, led by Bill Elliott and Ken Schrader with five each; Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin lead all active drivers with three each. · Buddy Baker won the inaugural Coors Light pole at Pocono in 1974 with a speed of 144.122 mph. · Five drivers have won consecutive Coors Light poles at Pocono. Bill Elliott holds the record for most consecutive poles at Pocono with three; fall 1984 and both races in 1985. · Two active drivers have posted consecutive Coors Light poles at Pocono: Denny Hamlin (2006 sweep) and Joey Logano (fall 2011 and spring 2012). · Youngest Pocono pole winner: Joey Logano (08/07/2011 – 21 years, 2 months, 14 days). · Oldest Pocono pole winner: David Pearson (06/10/1984 – 49 years, 5 months, 19 days). · Kyle Larson (8/03/2014) and Casey Mears (8/1/2004) posted their first career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light poles at Pocono Raceway. Wins · 33 different drivers have won at Pocono Raceway, led by Jeff Gordon with six wins. · Seven active drivers have multiple wins at Pocono: Jeff Gordon (6), Denny Hamlin (4), Jimmie Johnson (3), Carl Edwards , Kasey Kahne , Kurt Busch and Tony Stewart (each have 2). · Seven drivers have posted consecutive wins at Pocono Raceway all-time, including three consecutive by Bobby Allison (1982 sweep and spring 1983) and Tim Richmond (1986 sweep and spring 1987). · Three of the seven drivers to win consecutive races at Pocono are active: Jimmie Johnson (2004 sweep); Denny Hamlin (2006 sweep and 2009 fall and 2010 spring races) and Dale Earnhardt Jr . (2014 sweep). · Youngest Pocono winner: Joey Logano (06/10/2012 – 22 years, 0 months, 17 days). · Oldest Pocono winner: Harry Gant (06/17/1990 – 50 years, 5 months, 7 days). · Hendrick Motorsports has the most wins at Pocono in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with 17: Jeff Gordon (six), Tim Richmond (three), Jimmie Johnson (three), Dale Earnhardt Jr . (two), Kasey Kahne (one), Geoff Bodine (one) and Terry Labonte (one). · Eight different manufacturers have won in the NSCS at Pocono; led by Chevrolet with 31 victories; followed by Ford with 21 and Toyota has three. · 13 of the 75 (17.3%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from the Coors Light pole; the most recent was Joey Logano (June, 2012). · 15 of the 74 (20%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from the first starting position; the most recent was Jimmie Johnson (June, 2013). · The first starting position is the most proficient starting position in the field, producing more winners (15) than any other starting position at Pocono Raceway. · 24 of the 75 (32%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from the front row: 15 from the first starting position and nine from second-place. · 53 of the 75 (70.6%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Pocono have been won from a top-10 starting position. · Five of the 75 (6.7%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from a starting position outside the top 20. · The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Pocono is 29th, by Carl Edwards in the spring of 2005. · One active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver has posted his first career win at Pocono Raceway: Denny Hamlin (06/11/06). · Denny Hamlin and Carl Edwards are the only two active drivers to win at Pocono in their first appearances. · Matt Kenseth leads the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Pocono without visiting Victory Lane at 31; followed by Kevin Harvick with 29. Additional Finishing Position Stats · Mark Martin leads the series in runner-up finishes at Pocono with seven; Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with six; followed by Kurt Busch with five. · Mark Martin leads the series in top-five finishes at Pocono with 20; Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 19; followed by Kurt Busch and Tony Stewart with 12 each. · Mark Martin leads the series in top-10 finishes at Pocono with 34; Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 31; followed by Tony Stewart with 22. · Jimmie Johnson leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average finishing position at Pocono with a 9.630. Track Specific Stats · Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory (MOV) in
Catch up before Sunday's Windows 10 400 (1:30 p.m ET, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM) What: 42nd annual Windows 10 400 Where: Pocono Raceway, Long Pond, Pennsylvania When: Sunday, August 2, 2015 TV/Radio: NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Distance: 160 laps (400 miles) Green Flag: 1:46 p.m. ET Pit Road Speed: 55 mph Caution Car Speed: 70 mph Fuel Window: 32 laps Competition caution: Lap 15 (Track was washed Saturday night) On The Front Row ( Full lineup ) 1. Kyle Busch , Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota (178.416 mph) 2. Kevin Harvick , Stewart-Haas Racing No. 4 Chevrolet (178.168 mph) To the rear Jeb Burton , BK Racing No. 26 Toyota (going to backup car) Failed to Qualify None Fastest in Practice ( Full practice results ) First Practice: Brad Keselowski , Team Penske No. 2 Ford (176.606 mph) Second Practice: Carl Edwards , Joe Gibbs Racing No. 19 Toyota (175.812 mph) Third Practice: Kyle Busch , Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota (175.240 mph) Bumps be gone Two months ago, drivers complained about bumps in Turn 2 over Pocono's new waterfall entrance. The track paved over the section, and the racers have recognized the work done. " They did a great job repairing or improving the bumps and issues they had over in the Tunnel (Turn) especially on the apron," said an appreciative Dale Earnhardt Jr . But June winner Martin Truex Jr . may have lost an advantage, saying, "A few differences in the race track with the Tunnel Turn being smooth again, I think that certainly makes it a little bit easier on everybody else." Second consecutive sweep? Earnhardt won both races in 2014, and Truex will attempt to become the eighth driver to complete the season sweep at the Tricky Triangle. In addition to the two Juniors, the six other drivers who have achieved the Pocono sweep are Bobby Allison (1982), Bill Elliott (1985), Tim Richmond (1986), Bobby Labonte (1999), Jimmie Johnson (2004) and Denny Hamlin (2006). Four-Time's last time The all-time wins leader at Pocono, Jeff Gordon , will attempt to make his seventh trip to Richard Petty Victory Lane in his last start at the track. Gordon's last win at the Tricky Triangle came three years ago in this race when he snapped a tie with NASCAR Hall of Famer Bill Elliott for lead. The facility incorporated "GORDON" into the start/finish line, and it has a "Thank you Jeff 24" sign greeting patrons and race teams as they drive out of the track under the Tunnel Turn. Birthday bonanza A win would be an early birthday present for Gordon, who turns 44 next Tuesday, as well as his crew chief, Alan Gustafson, who turns 40 next Wednesday when fellow Hendrick crew chief, Chad Knaus, turns 44 as well. Last year's Sunoco Rookie of the Year winner, Kyle Larson , celebrated his 23rd birthday on Friday, and 38th-place qualifier Jeb Burton will join him at that age next Thursday. A two-time Pocono winner, Kurt Busch , turns 37 next Tuesday. Four in a row Coors Light Pole Award winner Kyle Busch will attempt to become the first driver to win four consecutive Sprint Cup Series races since Jimmie Johnson won four Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup races in a row in the fall of 2007. Other drivers with wins across a month of consecutive Sundays include NASCAR Hall of Famers Dale Earnhardt, Bill Elliott , David Pearson, Darrell Waltrip and Cale Yarborough. Others to turn the trick have been Harry Gant, Jeff Gordon , Mark Martin and Billy Wade. If Busch wins, he'll go for five in a row at Watkins Glen and try to become the first driver to accomplish the feat since another NASCAR Hall of Famer, Bobby Allison, did it in 1971. Richard Petty holds the record with 10. Taking the fifth Kyle Busch and Harvick haven't won on five of 23 Sprint Cup Series tracks, and Pocono is one they have in common. In addition to the Tricky Triangle, Harvick is winless at Dover, Kentucky, Sonoma and Texas while Busch hasn't gone to Victory Lane at Charlotte, Homestead-Miami, Kansas and Martinsville. Chevy seeks milestone The Bowtie Brigade has won six consecutive races at the track, and if it wins on Sunday, it will make the 750th victory for the manufacturer. Seventy-six different drivers have won in a Chevy, which has claimed 38 manufacturer titles including the last 12. Gordon boasts the most wins with 92, followed by Johnson with 74, Earnhardt (73), Waltrip (60) and Yarborough (48). Next new winner? Through 20 races, 10 drivers have won their way into the Chase with Kyle Busch on the cusp of making the top 30 and becoming the 11th driver to make the playoffs, leaving five spots with six events until the field is set. Of top 30 drivers without a win in 2015, Larson has the best average finish of eighth. The second-best driver in that group is two-time Pocono winner, Stewart, with a 12.1 average finish. Another former winner, Ryan Newman , is third with a 12.4 average finish. Double-duty dudes JJ Yeley skipped Saturday's practices to head to Iowa and run the XFINITY race. Four drivers competed in Saturday's Camping World Truck Series race at Pocono: Kyle Busch , Austin Dillon , Harvick and Brad Keselowski . Driver Rating Best driver rating average at Pocono based on races since 2005: 1. Denny Hamlin , 108.3 2. Jimmie Johnson , 106.9 3. Kurt Busch , 105.9 Defending race winner Dale Earnhardt Jr ., Hendrick Motorsports No. 88 Chevrolet Former Pocono winners in the field Jeff Gordon (6); Denny Hamlin (4); Jimmie Johnson (3); Tony Stewart , Kurt Busch , Dale Earnhardt Jr ., Kasey Kahne , Carl Edwards (2); Ryan Newman , Joey Logano , Brad Keselowski , Greg Biffle , Martin Truex Jr . (1). FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule