Race Journal Online
est. October 4, 2006

"I believe anybody who tells you he is unbiased is a liar. Being human gives you bias, and you can't avoid that. The best you can ever hope to be is fair."
-David Poole

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22nd - Kevin Harvick **
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Quote of the Week
"It just looks like another tire failure-- I'm not blaming the tire!!"
-Darrell Waltrip


By Carol Einarsson | 04/15/2014
 

Getty Images for NASCAR.


CHEERS to Jeff Gordon with something else to do other than going with Michael on his grid walk. All in all, it was a nice mix of insults and disrespect. Maybe a new memo went out saying that yes, you can opt out, but if you opt IN, we'll let you say whatever you want about Michael and his grid walk. Never work with children or animals, Michael... or NASCAR drivers.

CHEERS to Pastor John Bumgardner Jr for being amused, but is "First Presbyterian Church" really THAT hard to say, Mr. Track Announcer?  We do, however, applaud his perseverance until he finally managed it.

CHEERS to Brooke Mosteller, Miss South Carolina for a reasonable anthem, albeit a little trembly. Most impressive is singing on stage without that crown falling off, though. Maybe all the pins stuck straight into her cranium to hold that bad boy on is what was making her voice tremble.

CHEERS to Jimmie's hat hair, because with the sky in the background, he had a little Alfalfa thing going on there.

Comments: 31
Last Activity: 04/18/14
 
By Don Radebaugh / ARCA Racing | 04/10/2014
 
 (TOLEDO, Ohio) - The Federated Auto Parts 200 presented by Crunch'N Nutter at Salem Speedway Fueled by the Hoosier Lottery will mark the season-opener for the historic half-mile portion of the hallowed grounds in southern Indiana. But for seasoned veteran Ken Schrader, it'll be race number 22 on the year, and the buds on the trees haven't even opened yet. That's more than the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards will do in a full season.  
 
And oh yeah, Schrader turns 59 on May 29. Schrader is already the oldest ARCA winner in series history after his victory on the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds dirt mile last September. So what's Schrader's take on it?
 
"Well, that just means that I wanna be an older winner this year," Schrader said.
 

Comments: 4
Last Activity: 04/14/14
 
By Carol Einarsson | 04/08/2014
 

Photo: Mike Stone/AP forNASCAR.


CHEERS to the Robertson Family and all that they stand for. Never has a race sponsorship been so much about family, with everyone so much a part of it.

CHEERS to Miss Sadie for her poise and having priorities in order. Help us to bring honor to You in all that we do. Amen.

CHEERS to the bravery of someone who's not a professional singer standing in front of such a crowd and doing her best. Was it the best we've heard? Nope. But did she do her best? Yup. A patriot singing for her country and not for self-glory is what it's about, folks.
CHEERS to Chad Knaus ever-aware of cameras, holding up a piece of paper to block his face while he talks to his driver. Can't have anyone reading his lips!

JEERS to pre-race ceremonies pieced together. Yeah, I know there was a rain delay, and I should be happy that they pre-recorded Si giving the command so we could at least see him in his Elvis-esque fire suit. It's just not the same, though. And then someone in the production booth didn't even flip the switch to the track announcer introducing Si.


Comments: 16
Last Activity: 04/10/14
 
By Carol Einarsson | 04/01/2014
 

Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty ImagesforNASCAR.


CHEERS to Michael and Darrell Waltrip for getting the job done. It has to be unimaginably hard to be on TV after suffering such a loss. It's one thing for you or me to be at work in a similar situation, but to have to be on TV and mask the sadness is a whole different ballgame.

CHEERS to FOX giving the Waltrips airtime for a tribute to Bobby.

CHEERS also for a lovely tribute to Lynda Petty, voiced by Mike Joy. Such losses this week, but nice to see how loved they were by the extended NASCAR family.

CHEERS to Taco Bell for creative advertising, searching the country for men named Ronald McDonald to endorse their breakfast menu. VERY nice!! Good luck, though, finding guys named Burger King.

CHEERS to Jimmie Johnson ready for the camera, no matter what. Okay, I'll stay in the back of the truck. What? Truck's leaving? Okay, I'll jump out. What? I'm in the truck traffic lane? Okay, lemme move up here.

CHEERS to Kyle Busch photo bombing the end of JJ's interview.

Comments: 30
Last Activity: 04/04/14
 
By Mark Brune, RJO Guest Writer | 03/27/2014
 
Race Journal Online is proud to introduce Mark Brune as a new guest writer for our site. He's been a NASCAR fan for decades, and some of you may know him by his RJO screen name "dataman." Please welcome him, and drop a line or two in the comment section!

There has been a great deal of discussion lately about the state of NASCAR - predominantly, what's wrong with it. I'll admit that I've been one of the folks grousing, just not very loudly because I believe that criticism without a suggestion for improving the situation is just hot air.
 
A brief summary of how I feel:  It's too expensive. The Corporate Spokesperson template applied to all drivers has made most of them rather bland and difficult to get to know. There's too many 1.5 mile tracks which cause aerodynamics to play too great a role which leads to dull racing. NASCAR has abandoned its behind-the-scenes role and has tinkered with the "product" to such a degree that the sport we follow today is scarcely the same thing we followed way back when. The list goes on and on.
 
Most of what I read ends with the same lament: Put it back the way it was. That's a challenging task considering that each of us has a different vision of that bygone nirvana because each of us has something uniquely our own which drew us to love NASCAR racing. I encourage you all to reflect on how your journey began.

Comments: 6
Last Activity: 03/28/14
 
By Carol Einarsson | 03/25/2014
 

Photo: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images forNASCAR.


JEERS to the representation of Fontana being anywhere near Los Angeles, Hollywood, Venice Beach, Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, or surfing. It is NOT. There are not palm-tree-lined boulevards in Fontana. There are no beaches, and you could likely drive to Las Vegas from Fontana in less time than it would take to get to Venice Beach.

CHEERS to finally figuring out the low-attendance problems of the past at Fontana, though. Everyone who bought tickets is in Hollywood or at the Beach, looking for the race track!

JEERS to a sinus infection for Denny Hamlin side-lining him for the day. He probably just couldn't resist hanging out at the local Fontana surf-shop. But CHEERS to Sam Hornish in the car!!

JEERS to FOX for poor sound management, and hearing a crew chief talking to a driver while the invocation was beginning, and during the anthem, too.

CHEERS to Pia Toscano's presentation of the national anthem, despite the chit-chat on the FOX audio. And CHEERS to the Blue Angels' flyover, too!!

Comments: 18
Last Activity: 03/30/14
 
By Carol Einarsson | 03/18/2014
 

Photo: NASCAR.


CHEERS to a two-hour delay because Midwest race fans had more than enough time between church and the race start to even stop at the store on the way home!

CHEERS to a nice invocation by Mike Rife, even if he did thank God for Food City. It was a great prayer, though, reminding us that even with the bounty you may find at Food City, Jesus is the ultimate provider.

CHEERS to anyone being an "NRA Country Artist," because in my circles, NRA means something entirely different than I'm sure it meant for Cheryl LuQuire. However, JEERS to drastic deviations from the melody. What was that??

JEERS to one big void in the pre-race ceremonies.... no flyover! I have it direct from Bristol Motor Speedway that one was scheduled, but canceled due to weather.

CHEERS to wet fans still holding an American flag in the stands

Comments: 11
Last Activity: 03/19/14
 
By Carol Einarsson | 03/11/2014
 

Photo: Getty Images forNASCAR.


CHEERS to the hype of Las Vegas, even if it often overshadows the quality of racing. If it's worth doing, it's worth overdoing, right?

CHEERS to Robin Leach because for some reason, I always forget he's the event announcer.

CHEERS to Kurt Schulke because it's better to deliver an invocation from the heart rather than read it prepared on a note-card

JEERS to everything about the anthem except the country it represents. First, that is not a musical group. It's a "cast". Next, it's the cast of something called Million Dollar Quartet, and yet they were represented by FIVE. Thirdly, Elvis should never be part of a national anthem presentation. You're either honoring a dead singer or you're honoring the country, but the two don't mix and it's a mockery after that. And finally, they can't sing. You'd think that would have been number one, wouldn't you? But someone really should ensure that any musical "talent" (and we use that word VERY generously) actually know the tune of the anthem before they're given clearance to present it.

Comments: 15
Last Activity: 03/13/14
 
By Carol Einarsson | 03/04/2014
 

Photo: Harold Hinson/Chevrolet forNASCAR.


CHEERS to races at PIR because we love the later start times. Isn't it funny how even a later start time doesn't help us like Fontana, though?

CHEERS to Ricky Stenhouse's prerace preparation being the same every week. We expected all but the last... Firesuit on, steering wheel on, ear plugs in (first the right, then the left), then Chapstick, then finally... chewy SweeTarts?

JEERS to Michael Waltrip's odd grid walk hat. Even as I read that, though, I wonder if the word "odd" is in the right place in that sentence. And with only two drivers this week, I wonder if there were more PR people scurrying about to block the interviews after learning last week that it was an option.

CHEERS to fifty years of racing at Phoenix. And do you know who won the first race, 50 years ago? Tony Stewart's friend, AJ Foyt. Seems like a great day for Smoke to return to Victory Lane, then, doesn't it?

CHEERS to a great invocation! If God is for us, who can be against us? And everyone said, "Amen!"

Comments: 7
Last Activity: 03/05/14
 
By Carol Einarsson | 02/25/2014
 

Photo: Tom Pennington/Getty Imagesfor NASCAR.


CHEERS to what we've all been waiting for -- it's the Daytona 500!

CHEERS to Chris Myers, because when he introduced the Jimmie Johnson piece with, "In a car, on a bike, with a bat, or a ball..." I thought he was going Dr Seuss on us.

JEERS to Michael Waltrip saying to Kyle Busch, "What a hot lookin' rod you've got here." And it's so fun to see these boys when they're not in their driver's suit. Then saying Brian Vickers has been in rehab for a couple of months. I cringed when I thought of new viewers seeing that and what they must now think about Brian Vickers...AND NASCAR!!

JEERS to no hats. I finally figured it out while looking at Denny Hamlin. I couldn't understand why so many drivers' hair looked weird, but then I realized it's because we don't usually SEE their hair! For some reason, there seems to be a trend of going hatless.

Comments: 18
Last Activity: 03/05/14
 

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