TV Times: Pogo Jimmie
There goes Jimmie Johnson! What a difference a week makes. He went from heading to the White House while racing at Kansas to the out house while racing at Charlotte! Can he make it back into contention for his 6th NASCAR Championship as he now sits in 8th place in the Chase to the Nextel Cup Championship minus 34 points out of first place? Time will tell. Carl Edwards leads the points by only 5 with Kevin Harvick breathing down his neck; Matt Kenseth is third -7, Kyle Busch -18, Tony Stewart -24, Brad Keselowski -25, then Kurt Busch -27.
In the Charlotte Sprint Cup race, Matt Kenseth outran Kyle Busch to take that one while Carl Edwards had to settle for third. “Kenseth knows what to do because he’s been there,” quipped a disappointed Edwards, while Busch said, ”I’ve got to hand it to Matt. He just out-powered us.” Kenseth exclaimed, “At the end, I was able to clear Kyle and get the win!” On the previous day, Edwards did win the Nationwide race at that venue while Tony Stewart voiced complaints that his car was tight the whole time.
SPEED’s Adam Alexander thought that ”Matt was strong all night long,” while Randy Pemberton observed that ”Jimmie should have never tried to pass Newman. He was in too much of a rush to pass and should have kept his seventh place playing it safe. That would have kept him higher in The Chase. He knows that the drivers in front of him are very tough to beat, and they make very few mistakes.”
By now, everyone knows about the disaster that struck the Indy Car event at Vegas. Dan Wheldon, 33-years old, paid the ultimate price on lap 12 as his racecar vaulted over several others and resulted in a 15-car wreck in the IZOD Indy Car finale taking his life. During his career, he won 16 races and the Indy 500 twice – a good driver, indeed. He left behind a wife and two small children. A number of other drivers suffered injuries also. At that point, the race was cancelled.
“This is a dangerous sport,” said a broken Tony Kanaan, who was personal friends and teammate with Wheldon. ”We try not to think about it when we race each other.” Point challenger Will Power’s racer was one of those taken out, and the result was that Dario Franchitti won the IZOD Indy Car Championship again. “Dan and I were good friends. We were teammates at Ganassi racing,” said Dario in obvious pain. Franchitti has now taken four out five Indy Car championships. The predominant thinking seems to be that Vegas is much too fast for Indy Cars causing tremendous down forces leading to wrecks such as this.
On the undercard at Vegas, the Camping World NASCAR Trucks also raced. Ron Hornaday, Jr., won that one while Austin Dillon still leads in the point chase. And performing on the other side of Glitter Gulch were the AMA SuperX crowd in the Monster Energy Drink Cup event. Ryan Villapoto ended up taking home the $1 million bonus.
The F1 Circus performed in Korea where Sabastian Vettel took his tenth race of the season. Getting the leftovers were Lewis Hamilton, Mark Webber and Jenson Button.
TV Ratings were up for Kansas. ESPN’s live telecast of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway on Sunday, the ninth, earned a 3.1 household coverage rating, averaging 4,173,000 viewers, according to the Nielsen Company. The rating is up from a 2.7 for last year’s race.
This year, the Kansas race was the fourth event in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Last year, the fourth race in the Chase was at Auto Club Speedway in California, and that corresponding race earned a 2.9 rating. Of the four Chase races run so far this year, the three that have been run and telecast have all had ratings increases from last year. The first race of the Chase at Chicagoland Speedway was rained out and run on a Monday. This came from Jayski.com and StockCarGazette.com.
The National Auto Sport Association (NASA) 25 Hours of Thunderhill is less than three months away and will take place December 3-4 at Thunderhill Raceway Park in Willows, California. Last year’s overall and ES champion, Mercer Motorsports, has filed their entry and will be going for their third overall win in a row.
Mercer will field a Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car with an all-star line-up of drivers including American Le Mans Series regular Johannes van Overbeek, Grand-Am Prototype Champion Jon Fogarty, Porsche Factory Driver and Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona winner Wolf Henzler along with Porsche ace Rich Walton and American Le Mans Series Crew Chief Tommy Sadler.
Indian business conglomerate, Sahara India Pariwar, has announced a significant investment of approximately US $100 million to acquire a 42.5% stake in Formula One team Force India. This came from SportsBusinessInternational.
Check RaceFanTV.com for what’s happening this coming weekend. In the meantime, on the NASCAR scene The Chase will perform at Talladega Speedway with the order of the day being “tandem racing” which the majority of fans strongly dislike. (END)
NOTE: THE INFORMATION FOR THIS STORY CAME FROM VARIOUS SOURCES AND PERSONAL NOTES.