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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Quote of the Week
"Plot twist. Kenseth doesn't win a race this season, finishes the best of the four at Homestead, and wins the championship without ever winning a race. And then 10 years of Chase-tweaking to keep people (Matt Kenseth) from doing that, will all be for nothing."
-Matt Einarsson

Please refrain from posting links to the crash video at RJO or in the Forum.

By NASCAR Media | 09/13/2014

Photo: Carol Einarsson

Richard Petty Motorsports announced today that Marcos Ambrose will not return to pilot the No. 9 Ford Fusion following the 2014 season. Ambrose spoke with media members after the morning practice session Saturday at Chicagoland Speedway to address the announcement and discuss his future plans.


MARCOS AMBROSE, No. 9 Stanley Ford Fusion -- “First of all I need to thank everybody at Richard Petty Motorsports, it has been a great four years together. It has been incredible to drive for the King and Stanley DeWalt and Ford Racing and everybody. The time is just right for me to stop. I feel like the timing is right for myself and my family to return to Australia and that is what we are going to do.”

Comments: 0
Last Activity: None
By Carol Einarsson | 09/09/2014

Photo: Steve Helber/AP forNASCAR.

CHEERS to the crowd of fans packed in to RIR,

JEERS to being unsure if the pastor's eyes were open and staring right at the camera, or if they were closed, and coincidentally looking right at us. Probably time I got new glasses.

CHEERS to the TRADOC Herald Trumpets, even if I had to watch extra close after suspecting it wasn't performed live. Did you catch the one guy with the horn up to his mouth, but not blowing? Guess it just wasn't his turn.

CHEERS to the North American T-6s! Has anyone else noticed that since Obama pulled the plug on military fly-overs and tracks had to rely on the public sector, they've just been better? Funny how once you do something for yourself, you realize you don't need what you thought you had to have before.

JEERS to Brusty... Did the one on the right really say the "light bulbs" were flashing? I think those are actual flash bulbs, sir.

Comments: 28
Last Activity: 09/14/14
By Carol Einarsson | 09/02/2014

Photo: Kasey Kahne / Facebook.

JEERS to ESPN for too much information in the Tony Stewart return. It could have been recapped without pictures from the wreck. It could have just been more tastefully done. If you're watching this race - especially the PRE race - you know what happened. Maybe you missed Tony's press conference, and it was brief enough, and humble enough, and beautiful enough that it should have been included. But the rest before it was just for show and it was borderline shameful.

CHEERS to "They welcomed him back with grace, they championed his passion as a racer, and they championed his compassion as a man."

JEERS to Rusty Wallace. I just wonder sometimes if he ever thinks before he speaks, and if he realizes inflection matters. "Well, number one, MY thoughts are definitely with Kevin Ward, Jr. and his family..."

CHEERS to the fan reception at driver introductions. He's surely still hurting, but I can't imagine there's any way possible that he doesn't feel loved.

Comments: 20
Last Activity: 09/04/14
By Carol Einarsson | 08/26/2014

Photo: Jonathan Moore/Getty Imagesfor NASCAR.

CHEERS to the Pledge of Allegiance said in unison. Still one nation under God. So far.

CHEERS to the track announcer that sounded exactly like Dale Jarrett.

CHEERS to Michael McDowell giving the invocation. And we pray these things in Jesus' name. We like the big crowd Amen, too.

CHEERS to the best anthem of the year, and a very full crowd of kids once again, even if we only recognized one as a driver's child, Miss Kaylin (Kenseth) among them.

CHEERS to a fantastic flyover, and all phones pointed skyward! What a world we live in. It's kind of cool, but kind of sad. We can't look anywhere anymore, without pointing out phone at the same time. Is it more important to enjoy the moment in the present, or record it to enjoy later?

Comments: 24
Last Activity: 08/26/14
By Carol Einarsson | 08/19/2014

Photo: Alan Marler/HHP for Chevy Racing.

CHEERS to Tony Stewart taking as much time as he needs. I hope he knows how many people are praying for him.

CHEERS to the interview with Joey Logano. I wonder, though, given ESPN's often-questionable editing, if that sigh really was in response to his comments about Kevin and DeLana Harvick.

CHEERS to Geoff Rose for a matter-of-fact invocation. Here's your prayer. Done. I'm not convinced it should be a CHEERS , really, but it doesn't seem right to say JEERS .

CHEERS to Kate Collier and Chloe Sprague for their courage in singing the anthem. Yeah, you know what I mean. It's like saying a girl has a great personality.

Comments: 19
Last Activity: 08/24/14
By Carol Einarsson | 08/12/2014

Photo: Tom Pennington/Getty Imagesfor NASCAR.

CHEERS to the big shoulders of Greg Zipadelli. Nobody knows better how to help Tony through this. Throughout Tony's career, when you think of the biggest trials, Zippy's been there. I think he's as close to a brother as can be found.

CHEERS to the heart of Dale Jarrett, and the brotherly support shown Tony Stewart. Clearly DJ lost a LOT of sleep last night, and was still shaky this morning, but it's nice to know the kind of support -- prayer support -- that is surrounding Tony Stewart. I just rewatched it, and we've often seen DJ's heart, but I don't remember the last time I've seen that level of outward love to the point of near-tears. A very, very moving piece by Dale Jarrett.

CHEERS also to Marty Smith who never fails to put all the right words in order. And for sharing the driver tweets, especially the poignant words of one who knows, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. "We will all lose someone in our time. When a loss is sudden and unexpected, the pain and sadness is suffocating."

Comments: 22
Last Activity: 08/17/14
By Carol Einarsson | 08/10/2014

There was a time when, in tragedy (maybe especially in tragedy), I could put a string of words together that would sum up the whole emotional experience felt by so many. I fear that time may have passed. I sit here, in hour three, reading all of the reports from the sprint car race in New York, where a three-time NASCAR champion left the track alive, and a 20-year-old young man did not.

Tony Stewart was back to sprint car racing. The reports, which all seem so trivial now, are that he got into Kevin Ward, Jr, putting him out of the race. With a flat tire, Kevin got out of his car to do what racers do -- point at the guy who caused your wreck.

The caution was out, the cars had slowed, and Kevin was not just pointing, but moving down the track. He was in the racing line when the cars came back around, and as though being pointed at by a young racer was the ultimate insult, Tony accelerated towards the kid. Only Tony knows why.

Comments: 12
Last Activity: 08/12/14
By Carol Einarsson | 08/05/2014

Photo: Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevrolet.

CHEERS to the pre-race interview with Junior, but JEERS to the music in the background, the inexplicable playing of Pomp and Circumstance. I'm sure there was a purpose, but it's the kind of song that sticks in my head all day long. I guess the up-side is that I didn't have to shop for a graduation gift.

JEERS to a freaky bowling pin. It wasn't enough that it had a face, but did you see it's ridiculous nose? Kids, stay in school, lest you end up dressed as a bowling pin.

CHEERS to Smoke without his suspected comb-in hair color. Grey is much more becoming.

CHEERS to Junior's parade lap in the back of the truck and his weird wave to the crowd. A steady hand, which is probably nicer for fan pictures from the stands, but then every so often, it would quiver. The Quiver Wave.. better than the pageant wave any day!

Comments: 7
Last Activity: 08/05/14
By Carol Einarsson | 07/29/2014

Photo: NASCAR.

CHEERS to ESPN for replaying the "NASCAR arrives at Indy" piece that they also showed on Saturday, only because those kinds of heart-string production pieces have always been what ESPN does best, and that's not changed over the years. From seeing Kyle Petty so long ago and so outspoken (nothing's changed there, either), to Tony Stewart saying he was furious, it was a great lead-in to the race.

JEERS to the return of Brad Daugherty to the booth. Let's focus, though, on the absence of Ray Evernham, though, and see the positive side of things. Wait... what is that? Ray's NOT gone?? JEERS to false advertising by ESPN, then.

JEERS to a prerace concert as part of the televised coverage. It's just a waste of time. I understand why tracks do it. There are fans there very early, and it keeps the excitement up in the same way a warm-up comedian energizes the crowd for a live-taping of a TV show, but it doesn't need to be televised.

JEERS , while I'm at it, to our (and yes, I'm including myself) obsession with recording everything on our phones. I think our focus on recording experiences has surpassed our actual enjoyment of living it. Think on that for awhile. Maybe we'd all be happier if we returned to EXPERIENCING things, rather than creating and recording experiences to be logged on social media.

CHEERS to the biggest asset at ESPN: Marty Smith. Everything else is tolerable, like spinach for dinner when you know you're getting chocolate cake for dessert. Keep those Marty Smith essays comin', and we can accept pretty much everything else ESPN throws at us.

CHEERS to Juan Pablo visiting our series again. It sure would be great for HIM to be the one to get that elusive win for Roger Penske, showing up the regulars.

Comments: 25
Last Activity: 08/01/14
By Carol Einarsson | 07/15/2014

Photo: Nick Laham/Getty Images forNASCAR.

CHEERS to TNT and the entire pre-race show for what will be their final NASCAR race. In particular, the sit-down with Trent Owens. What a story, and what a LIFE! Thanks, Larry Mac, for bringing us that story!

CHEERS to "Goodyear doesn't make bad tires; people just do bad things TO them." Very good point. I've never seen a parked car in the garage, engine off, and suddenly being propelled into a wall.

JEERS to 5-Hour Energy's "Yummification" contest. When you have a product that tastes so nasty you have to have a contest for the general public to find a way to make it palatable, maybe that should have been addressed before the first bottle was sold.

CHEERS to Mike Helton in the booth. We always enjoy hearing from him when there's no bad news to be delivered. And Wally wanting to make sure he can still hitch a ride when he needs one.

Comments: 21
Last Activity: 07/17/14

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