Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Todd Gordon Named Crew Chief at Penske

Per, Nationwide Series crew chief Todd Gordon will take over the role with the No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger in the NASCAR Cup Series.

Gordon joined Penske in January of 2011, working with Brad Keselowski in the Nationwide Series ranks. Gordon led the team to six wins and six pole positions this past season.

“Our first priority is always to look within the walls of Penske Racing when making personnel decisions,” team owner Roger Penske said. “We want to reward success. The path we are taking with Todd mirrors what we did with Paul Wolfe who led the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge to a Chase berth in 2011. We think Todd can get the job done in the same manner.”

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tony Stewart Named Driver of the Year By Media

Per Scene Daily, Tony Stewart was named the 2011 Driver of the Year by a 19-member panel of journalists and broadcasters.

The Driver of the Year Foundation presents the award to the driver its panel votes as the best in all of motorsports. Any driver competing in a U.S.-based series or a U.S. driver competing overseas is eligible as long as the vehicles raced have four wheels.

Stewart, who won the 2011 Sprint Cup title, got 15 votes while his Cup challenger, Carl Edwards, got one vote. Also getting one vote was IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti, World of Outlaws champion Jason Meyers and top fuel drag racer Del Worsham.


Kurt Busch in No. 43 at Richard Petty Motorsports?

According to multiple reports, Kurt Busch will likely replace A.J. Allmendinger who was released today by Richard Petty Motorsports.

On Tuesday reported that Kurt Busch is in line for the ride, with RPM chief operating officer Robbie Loomis telling Dave Moody, “I would mortgage my house to make Kurt a part of this team. We value what he has done on the race track. He has won a (Sprint Cup) championship and worked for a first-class operation like Penske Racing. Guys like that don’t come along every day.”

In addition, RPM co-owner Andy Murstein told he believes Busch will end up with a ride in 2012 season.

"Kurt’s issues are far less severe than what other athletes have done in other sports,” Murstein told Tuesday. “Those athletes have all received second chances and Kurt will too. He wasn't caught running a dog-fighting ring, he wasn't caught with a handgun in a club, he wasn't using performance-enhancing drugs, and unlike his brother he wasn't even letting his temper get the best of him to cause a wreck. 
“I think he is a great competitor who just needs to take a step back and clear his head. Perhaps someone as well-respected, talented, and universally loved like the King could help him accomplish that."

NASCAR Gets HD Video Replay System

Per, NASCAR will use a new video player system to help it view replays quicker in 2012.

The system, which uses 18 high definition camera feeds, was developed by Telestream and will give NASCAR officials better ability replay video forward or backward for instant analysis and the ability to jump between past and current sequential camera angle clips.

NASCAR had been testing the system during the 2011 season for full-time use in 2012.

Officials use instant replays, when feasible, to determine penalties or the finishing order of an event, especially when a caution comes out late or at the end of a race.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Daytona 500 Expected to Start at 1 p.m.

Per Scene Daily, The Daytona 500 is expected to begin shortly after 1 p.m. ET for the third consecutive year after NASCAR’s move to earlier, more consistent start times.

Although NASCAR has not released official start times for the 2012 season, NASCAR has set a tentative 1 p.m. start time for the 2012 season-opening race Feb. 26 at Daytona International Speedway.

Last year, the green flag waved at about 1:29 p.m. ET.

President of Speed Channel Resigns

Per Multichannel News, Speed Channel said president Hunter Nickell is exiting the driver's seat at the motor-sports programmer, having grown to its current 84-million-subscriber reach under his reign since 2005.

He will finish several projects at Speed over the next few months and continue to explore opportunities within the Fox Sports Media Group, the channel said.

An interim replacement will be named shortly, the network said.

Speed noted that under Nickell, the programmer increased its relationship with NASCAR and "added several high-profile events to its programming lineup, including the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race, the NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction ceremonies and all three of the NASCAR post-season awards banquets. Nickell also generated increased Speed programming and marketing presence at every NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on the circuit, giving Speed unmistakable leadership in on-site network visibility."