November 17, 2009 |
Mark Martin often says he's "blessed," and for good reason. The driver from Batesville, Ark., has competed in NASCAR's top league for more than 25 years, amassing 40 victories, nearly $73 million in race winnings and a reputation as a fan favorite. But it also appears likely that, once again, Martin will fall short of the one goal that's eluded him: Winning a championship. Martin, 50, was in striking distance of catching teammate Jimmie Johnson for the lead in NASCAR's Chase for the Sprint Cup playoff, but Johnson all but clinched the title Sunday with a dominating win at Phoenix International Raceway.
June 15, 2008 |
Jack Roush has two big loves in his life, besides family. The longtime NASCAR team owner obviously relishes being part of racing and has fielded cars and won races and championships in numerous series, including Sprint Cup. But his other major interest is airplanes. A source of pride for years has been his P-51 Mustang, which Roush flies any chance he gets. Even hitting power lines and crashing an experimental aircraft, nearly losing his life, in 2002 hasn't diminished Roush's enthusiasm for flying.
October 5, 2008 |
When Bobby Allison had a horrifying crash at Alabama International Motor Speedway in May 1987, no one could have imagined that it would usher in an era of restrictor plate racing that would still be going 21 years later. Allison got sideways and then airborne at close to 210 mph, sailing into the protective fence that separates the track from the grandstands during a race at what is now Talladega Superspeedway. The car tore down about 100 yards of fencing, scattering parts and pieces of both the fence and the car into the stands and injuring several spectators.
August 3, 2009 |
As if to tease the thousands of fans who had waited all day, the sun finally made an appearance about 4 on Sunday afternoon at Pocono Raceway. But by then, it was too late to salvage the Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500. About 4:15, with the sun shining brightly, the announcement came that the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event was postponed until today. ESPN's coverage will begin at 9 a.m. PDT. A hard downpour that began early in the morning continued into the afternoon.
September 25, 2012 |
NASCAR on Tuesday unveiled its Sprint Cup Series schedule for 2013, which shows little change from this year's 36-race lineup. Next year's schedule opens with the Daytona 500 on Feb. 24, followed by Phoenix (March 3), Las Vegas (March 10) and Bristol, Tenn. (March 17). The Cup series then makes its one stop in Southern California, at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, on March 24. NASCAR's 10-race Chase for the Cup title playoff again starts at Chicagoland Speedway on Sept. 15 and ends with the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Nov. 17. "Next year's schedule again will offer a strong mix of challenges for our talented drivers," NASCAR Chairman Brian France said in a statement.
July 2, 2008 |
Dario Franchitti's rookie year in NASCAR's top-level series abruptly ended Tuesday when his team shut down the driver's No. 40 Dodge operation because of a lack of sponsorship. Franchitti, 35, won the Indianapolis 500 last year and then switched to stock-car racing this season with the team of Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. He was one of several open-wheel drivers who have switched to NASCAR in the last two years.
November 13, 2009 |
What was expected to be Jimmie Johnson's coronation in the desert is back to being a bona fide chase for NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series championship. Johnson was cruising toward a record fourth consecutive Cup title -- it was widely assumed that he would clinch the title at Sunday's race at Phoenix International Raceway -- but that was before last weekend's race in Texas. The crash of Johnson's No. 48 Chevrolet three laps into the Dickies 500 at Texas Motor Speedway relegated him to a 38th-place finish, and his point lead over teammate Mark Martin in NASCAR's Chase for the Cup playoff was slashed to 73 points from 184. That's still a sizable hurdle for Martin to overcome if the 50-year-old veteran hopes to capture his first championship after being runner-up to the series title winner four times in his long career.
November 11, 2012 |
AVONDALE, Ariz. -- Jimmie Johnson crashed during the NASCAR race Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway, jeopardizing his bid to win a sixth Sprint Cup Series championship. Johnson's No. 48 Chevrolet crashed into the outside wall in Turn 4 on Lap 234 of the 312-lap race after it appeared the car's right front tire blew or the car had some sort of braking malfunction. Johnson's crew took the car to the garage for repairs. Making matters worse for Johnson, his closest competitor for the title, Brad Keselowski, had just taken the race lead moments before Johnson's accident.
April 19, 2009 |
Mark Martin continued to defy his age, becoming the first 50-year-old driver to win a Sprint Cup race in 16 years with a victory Saturday night at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Ariz. Martin, who has waffled on retirement several times in the last four years, started from the pole and led 157 of 312 laps. He was out front when teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s accident brought out a caution with 11 laps to go, erasing a four-second lead over Tony Stewart.
March 5, 2013 |
The winner of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at the Texas Motor Speedway traditionally gets to fire a six-shooter in victory lane. And the pole winner gets a rifle as a prize. So it only makes sense that the National Rifle Assn. has become the title sponsor of the April race in Fort Worth, which is now known as the NRA 500. But just in case you needed more reasons, NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre has plenty. “The NRA 500 is the latest announcement in the long history of a growing partnership between the NRA, Speedway Motorsports and the NASCAR community,” he said in a video shown at Texas Motor Speedway on Monday.