Tony can't tie a tie, Jimmie saves the day
WATCH: Ready. Set. Launch Chase event The Ready. Set. Chase. launch Chase media event revealed a lot about drivers. The most important thing we learned on Thursday in Chicago? Tony Stewart can't tie his own tie. During the Chevrolet portion of the event, drivers were challenged to tie a bow tie in honor of the Chevrolet "bow tie" emblem. 'Smoke', the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup contender, instantly told the crowd that he couldn't tie a bow tie -- much less a regular tie. "You laugh, back in 2011 (when Stewart won the Sprint Cup title), Jimmie came up and tied my tie for me at the banquet," Stewart said. When asked if it was a bow tie, Johnson said: "No, just a black, regular tie." "I could tie a knot, but that's it," Stewart added. Next time, Tony , spring for the clip-on. &amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Relive Tony's 2011 Chicagoland win
Watch the final laps of Tony Stewart's 2011 victory at Chicagoland Speedway which kicked off the run to his third NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship.
Tony at-work on 'next year's projects,' more tweets
Editor's note: Every Friday, "Tweets You Might Have Missed" will present eight of the best NASCAR-related tweets from the week. 1. Getting one of next years projects started pic.twitter.com/3aK7YLnPJG — Tony Stewart (@TonyStewart) August 31, 2016 2. What happens when Cash drives down and decides he'd rather go with dad on tractor. @LorraBowyer got new wheels. pic.twitter.com/sgAy77gaZz — Clint Bowyer (@ClintBowyer) September 2, 2016 3. Parenting pic.twitter.com/rbCX3ngM4Z — landon cassill (@landoncassill) August 31, 2016 4. pic.twitter.com/7K5jFZSkO4 — DeLana Harvick (@DeLanaHarvick) September 2, 2016 5. Damn right it is... @Blaney pic.twitter.com/JJEq7mc2Nh — Darrell Wallace Jr (@BubbaWallace) August 31, 2016 6. Don't be that guy. pic.twitter.com/789qeeRsBx — Joey Logano (@joeylogano) September 2, 2016 7. Celebrating! pic.twitter.com/EebaykOwyZ — Josh Wise (@Josh_Wise) August 31, 2016 8. Oh I found him had a great time at The Dillon Boys 3 on 3 tournament!!! Thanks to all those who participated! pic.twitter.com/Q9zZSTSfpe — Haley Dillon (@HaleyKDillon) September 1, 2016
Relive Tony's first NSCS victory
Watch the final laps from Tony Stewart's first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory, which came at Richmond International Raceway in 1999 during his rookie season.
Drivers rally from pre-qualifying hang-ups
RELATED: Qualifying results " Edwards earns sixth Coors Light Pole of 2016 Multiple drivers, including three Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup competitors, were left sweating it out in the garage when their cars did not pass pre-qualifying inspection by the start of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying at New Hampshire Motor Speedway . Qualifying began on time at 4:45 p.m. ET, with a long line of cars still waiting to be cleared. Those that did not initially pass included the No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet of Austin Dillon , the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet of Kevin Harvick and the No. 14 SHR Chevrolet of Tony Stewart , all Chase drivers. Despite the backlog, all 40 cars eventually posted a qualifying time for Sunday's Bad Boy Off Road 300 (2 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), with Regan Smith the last to clear inspection as he headed to pit road with 3 minutes, 15 seconds left in the opening 20-minute knockout round. "We feel like what is going on is that the stakes are higher now that we're at the Chase," NASCAR Senior Vice President of Competition Scott Miller said on the NBCSN broadcast. "I think all of our competitors are trying to push the envelope. ... If someone doesn't make it out there, it's not our process, it's them pushing the envelope." In other technical-related news, the Hendrick Motorsports No. 24 team for rookie Chase Elliott received its fourth written warning for issues in inspection. Elliott's team will be relegated to the final pick in pit-stall selection ahead of the second race of the 10-race postseason. Dillon and Harvick were eventually cleared with less than 12 minutes to go in the opening 20-minute round of group qualifying, and Harvick got on the track with seven minutes to spare. The final latecomers were granted a slight time cushion when Clint Bowyer spun out in Turn 4 during a qualifying pass, stopping the clock with 11:39 remaining. Harvick eventually posted the seventh-fastest time of the round, with Stewart in 17th and Dillon 29th in his backup car after a crash in opening practice damaged his primary No. 3 Chevrolet. "It's different," Dillon said of the logjam outside of the inspection bay. "I see NASCAR just trying to keep everybody on the same playing field." Harvick will start 19th. His team owner and SHR teammate, Stewart, will start 22nd in what's expected to be his final New Hampshire start. The full list of cars not cleared from inspection when the green flag dropped: the No. 10 of Danica Patrick , the No. 47 of AJ Allmendinger , the No. 7 of Smith, the No. 83 of Matt DiBenedetto , the No. 5 of Kasey Kahne , the No. 16 of Greg Biffle and the No. 17 of Ricky Stenhouse Jr. , in addition to the Nos. 3, 4 and 14. &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Chase by the Numbers: New Hampshire
Here's all the info you need to know for the second stop in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, including a surprise statistic for 3-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion, Tony Stewart.
Heads up: Loudon and Kentucky weekend
Here are the hot topics, trending news and key story lines to get you ready for this weekend's races at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and Kentucky Speedway , including the Chase openers for the NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. WEATHER The weekend forecast for Loudon, New Hampshire, looks mostly clear for on-track activity. Friday for Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole qualifying there is a 48 percent chance for precipitation. For the Camping World Truck race on Saturday, skies will be partly cloudy and the high is expected to be 64 degrees. And for the Sprint Cup race on Sunday, we're looking at clear skies and a high of 61. For Sparta, Kentucky, site of this weekend's XFINITY events, it will be clear and 89 degrees for the start of Friday's practices. And on Saturday it will be clear and 78 degrees for the start of the race. KEY TIMES Sprint Cup Series: The Sprint Cup Series holds its first practice Friday at 11:30 a.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App) followed by Coors Light Pole qualifying at 4:45 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App). The Bad Boy Off Road 300 is at 2 p.m. ET Sunday (NBCSN/NBC Sports App/PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). XFINITY Series: The XFINITY Series opens practice on Friday at 3:30 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App) and qualifies Saturday at 4:45 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App). The VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 is on Saturday at 8 p.m. ET (NBC/NBC Sports App). Camping World Truck Series: The Camping World Truck Series is scheduled for a Keystone Light Pole qualifying session at 10:10 a.m. ET on FS1 Saturday followed by the UNOH 175 race at 1 p.m. ET (FS1). CATCH DRIVERS LIVE We'll stream every driver press conference in the New Hampshire media center at NASCAR.com/presspass. Click here for a full schedule. Click here to tune into the live stream . LAST TIME In September of 2015, Matt Kenseth outlasted Kevin Harvick , who ran out of fuel with three laps to go, to capture the victory in the Sylvania 300 and punch his ticket to the second round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup . Kenseth backed up that win with another at New Hampshire in July of this season. In that one, Kenseth pulled away from Tony Stewart to win by 1.982 seconds. YOU SHOULD KNOW • Chris Buescher (-12 from 12th place), Kyle Larson (-2), Kevin Harvick (-1) and Austin Dillon (-1) are all on the outside looking in as far as the Chase Grid standings are concerned. Of those drivers, Harvick is the only one who owns a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory at New Hampshire (fall of 2006). Harvick has finished in the top four in three of his past four races at Loudon, with the only exception being the 21st-place finish in the Chase race here last season. • New England native Joey Logano considers New Hampshire to be his home track and high on his list as far as valued victories. Logano has won here twice, in the 2014 Chase race and in 2009 when he notched his first-ever Sprint Cup Series victory as a member of Joe Gibbs Racing . At this time last year, Logano was hitting his stride in a season in which he captured six Sprint Cup victories. Although this season hasn't been as dominant, his second-place finish at Chicago gives him momentum coming into Sunday. • Erik Jones comes to Kentucky atop the Chase standings in the XFINITY Series thanks to his four victories this season. And chances are he'll get his Chase off to a good start there. In three races at Kentucky, Jones has an average finish of 4.7, and earlier this season, he finished fourth. Jones is trying to back up last year's Camping World Truck Series championship with an XFINITY title before moving to Sprint Cup with Furniture Row Racing next season. • Cole Custer is the only Camping World Truck Series regular who has a win at New Hampshire, but he's not in the Chase after his controversial run-in with John Hunter Nemechek at the end of the Sept. 4 race at Canadian Tire Motor Sport Park. Could Custer take out his frustrations on Nemechek now that the Chase in underway? We shall see. Interestingly, Nemechek's average finish of 5.0 (in two races) at New Hampshire is bested only by Johnny Sauter 's 4.8 (in five races) entering this weekend.
Harvick knows what to do when backed into corner
RELATED: Chase bubble heading into Loudon One race into NASCAR's 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and the championship standings are thoroughly scrambled and causing double-takes. Some favorites are shaking their heads and some long shots are thanking their lucky stars. But as rough as stomaching a 20th-place finish in the Chicago opener was for the regular-season points leader Kevin Harvick , there is still every reason to believe it could just provide a more dramatic backdrop for another championship run. Harvick finished 42nd in the Chicago race last year and still advanced to the final round of drivers competing for the big trophy at Miami. In fact, the 2014 Sprint Cup champion Harvick is the only driver who has advanced to the final round in both seasons of the new Chase format. Obviously, his Stewart-Haas Racing team feels urgency to get back on track this weekend in New Hampshire. Harvick is ranked 14th -- a single point behind his team owner Tony Stewart in the 12th and final position to advance in two weeks. But this group knows it can restore its title run, having crawled out of a deeper hole last fall and still finishing runner-up in the championship. It's a steely, forward-focus mindset that has served the intensely competitive Harvick well. "It's something we pride ourselves in," Harvick said this week. "I think the pressure situations have been very good for us. As you look at the past two years -- winning the championship and finishing second and getting to Homestead twice -- it kind of shows the grit and backbone of our team and how well they've dealt with those situations. "That experience definitely pays dividends every year when you go in. I think we were a little too ramped up, or at least I was, to start the Chase last year. There's definitely a strategy to how you approach situations and how you approach the end. I think, having dealt with that in the past, that it's a good thing for us." Harvick's track record at New Hampshire is impressive, if not A-plus. He won a race from the pole position in 2006, has led 698 total laps on the 1.058-mile track and never had a DNF. He's had top-four finishes in three of the last four races in New Hampshire and was fourth there in July. While some consider the track to be a unique wild card, Harvick insists it's of equal challenge as the rest of the schedule. "I don't think Loudon is really any different than any other racetrack," Harvick said. "It's just circumstances that can crop up at really any racetrack throughout the Chase. ... If you're having a bad day, you know it can result in a bad day. You just have to overcome that and try to get yourself out of the hole." That is something Harvick has done well in the past, and it's his overall standing in Sprint Cup competition that is more indicative of his potential than last week's circumstantial disappointment. He accumulated the most regular-season points of anyone. He leads the series in 11 different categories, including top fives (13), top 10s (21), driver rating (109.1) and average finish (8.9). He has four runner-up finishes this season, including Charlotte and Kansas, where the series returns during the Chase. Since 2014, Harvick and his crew chief Rodney Childers have a series-best 33 top-two finishes, 10 of those wins. That translates into 33.7 percent of all the races in that time frame. The disappointing outcome at Chicago can be viewed as both an anomaly and a motivator. There is no way Harvick's competition is writing him off. In fact, they are probably more worried when he is more driven. "You just have to be selfish," Harvick said after the Richmond regular-season finale. "You have to do what's best for your team, worry about the consequences when all the dust settles, and you have to be narrow minded, not listen to anything, and do whatever it takes to figure out how to make the best performance on that particular day because every point matters. "This is a minute-by-minute battle." And Harvick knows time is ticking for the 4-team. MORE: Is Harvick a good fantasy play this week?
NASCAR Foundation to donate $1 million to NYU Langone Medical Center
NEW YORK -- The NASCAR Foundation will donate $1 million to NYU Langone Medical Center, as part of a multi-year partnership to benefit hospitalized children. Through this partnership, The NASCAR Foundation will enhance the Child Life Program at the Hassenfeld Children's Hospital of New York at NYU Langone. The partnership will be commemorated at the first-ever NASCAR Foundation Honors Gala taking place at The Marriott Marquis in New York on Sept. 27. This is The NASCAR Foundation's first multi-year partnership with a New York area hospital and marks its commitment to reach more kids nationally. NASCAR’s charitable arm has donated $25 million and impacted more than one million children since its inception in 2006. "This is an important partnership for The NASCAR Foundation," said NASCAR Vice Chairman Mike Helton. "The work being done by the NYU Langone Medical Center is changing lives, each and every day. The NASCAR Foundation is proud to have an opportunity to support that important work and expand our commitment to improving the lives of children in need." Through this partnership, the Child Life Program will ease the anxiety of children and their families during their hospital stay, which is essential to recovery. The NASCAR Foundation will support an enhanced child and family experience, fund two Child Life specialists, and provide resources, equipment and supplies to complement the wide-range of supportive and therapeutic activities currently offered at Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at no charge to patients. This marks an expansion of The NASCAR Foundation's commitment to supporting children with Child Life programming as part of its signature Speediatrics program, which has provided more than 500,000 children with state-of-the-art medical care. "As leaders in the field of pediatrics, we're proud to partner with The NASCAR Foundation whose generous philanthropic support provides extensive and meaningful programs to help children and their families," said Catherine S. Manno, MD, the Pat and John Rosenwald Professor and Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at NYU Langone. "This sponsorship, in concert with our Sala Institute for Child and Family Centered Care, will strengthen our national exemplar model of care for children and their families." The NASCAR Foundation Honors Gala, which was planned to celebrate "10 Years of Giving," has taken on additional significance following the unexpected passing of its Founder and Chairwoman Emeritus Betty Jane France last month. The Gala will be a tribute to Betty Jane France's life and is being hosted by the France family including NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France (son) and his wife Amy France, International Speedway Corporation CEO Lesa France Kennedy (daughter) and NASCAR Vice Chairman and International Speedway Corporation Chairman Jim France (brother-in-law). At the Honors Gala, various awards will be bestowed, including: -- Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award presented by Nationwide : One of four finalists will be announced as the winner following a fan vote which has taken place since July 13. The NASCAR Foundation will donate a total of $175,000 to the charities represented by the finalists -- with the winner's charity receiving a $100,000 donation. This year's finalists include Jim Giaccone of Bayville, New York, representing Tuesday's Children; Andy Hoffman of Atkinson, Nebraska, founder of the Team Jack Foundation; Logan Houptley of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, a founding member of Mikayla's Voice; and Parker White of Greensboro, North Carolina, founder of BackPack Beginnings. Since the award's inception, nearly $900,000 has been contributed to charities represented by the finalists . -- Children's Champion Award: Dr. Howard B. Ginsburg : The William F. and Virginia Connolly Mitty Associate Professor of Pediatric Surgery, Department of Surgery, Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics, and Division Chief, Pediatric Surgery at NYU Langone, will receive the award recognizing his commitment to children. -- Founder's Award: NBC Sports Group Chairman Mark Lazarus will receive the award recognizing his contributions to philanthropy. The Honors Gala will be headlined by Grammy® and Tony ® nominated singer Sara Bareilles . The following NASCAR champions and rising stars will be in attendance: six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Jimmie Johnson , seven-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Richard Petty , reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Kyle Busch , NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion, NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace, two-time NASCAR XFINITY Series Champions Martin Truex Jr . and Ricky Stenhouse Jr ., Danica Patrick , Kyle Larson , Kasey Kahne , Ben Kennedy and Julia Landauer. This event builds on NASCAR's long history in New York. The racing organization opened its first office in Manhattan in 1996 and is based out of the newly renovated New York headquarters at 590 Madison Avenue. This partnership also marks further collaboration between NYU and NASCAR. In March, Brian France participated in NYU's first Social Responsibility of Sports Conference where he pledged NASCAR's support to improve social responsibility in sports. For ticket information or table sponsorships, please visit www.nascarfoundation.org/honors-gala .
Stewart goes back-to-back to open the Chase in 2011
Watch the final laps of Tony Stewart's 2011 victory at New Hampshire Motor Speedway where he grabs back-to-back wins to open up the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.