Monday, September 29, 2008

For all the people who are forced to live with Comcast Cable not offering Speedtv in their area (ahem... Center City Philadelphia...ahem), here's a little montage of the F1-at-night action you missed.


Singapore Executive Summary from Axis of Oversteer.com Video on Vimeo.

Weekend recap

What you missed while watching the slow, yet inevitable, implosion of the New York Metropolitans.

Kansas Speedway played host to the NASCAR contingent of round track racers. On Sunday, "Hot" Carl Edwards' attempted to slide-job Jimmie Johnson final lap/final turn. It worked, for a few hundred yards, until Johnson went under the cushion-hopping Edwards for the win. Greg Biffle rounded out the top-3. The Chase standings mirror those top-3. Cheers to AJ Allmendinger, who tallied a career-best p9, in what was likely his last race with Red Bull Racing.



The Hot Pass: Pieces fall into place for Johnson in KC

Joe Gibbs Racing has continued its dominance of the Nationwide Series, which is good for them, as they now suck in Cup competition. (JGR drivers hold the final three spots in Chase standings.) Denny Hamlin won the Kansas N'Wide race on Saturday. Points leader Clint Bowyer finished second.

Hamlin takes Nationwide race in Kansas

When F1 goes night racing in Singapore, two things happen. #1: High end prostitutes make a killing on oil magnates. And #2: Varsha, Hoobs and Matchett have an interweb-only talk about the goings-on. Enjoy.



F1: Alonso Prevails in Hectic Singaporean Grand Prix

Tony Schumacher got back to his winning ways on Sunday by beating Doug Herbert in the finals at the NHRA Mid-South Nationals. Tim Wilkerson (FC), Mike Edwards (PSC) and Craig Treble (PSB) were the other pro winners.

Schumacher beats four Countdown drivers to pad his points in Top Fuel

ARCA was road racing in Jersey (finalist for the strangest sentence of the day). Justin Allgaier won the rain-shortened event. Scott Speed finished eighth and retains the points lead going into Talladega.

ARCA: Allgaier Takes NJMP Race, While Speed and Stenhouse Continue Title Battle

Let us all make it a point to have an outstanding race week. Go Phillies. Fuck the Brewers.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Remembering PLN

Around the interwebs with the best memories of a racing legend and American badass.



Newman a lot of things, but for many years, racing came first

In recent years, Newman's relationship with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway was antagonistic; when the Speedway changed its catering rules in 1995 to allow only IMS-approved suppliers, Newman flaunted authority (and was later fined) by having his team chefs prepare food for the Newman/Haas crew, which he personally carted into the garage area.

(John Oreovicz -espn.com)

Love for winning fueled Newman's passion on the racetrack

Two-time Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson said Newman even drove a Hendrick Motorsports car."We had a deal when Rick [Hendrick] would put a restrictor-plate on a car and let a few people drive it with half horsepower," Johnson said. "Paul was amazing. He would get out there on stickier tires and run really quick laps."

(Terry Blount-espn.com)

Paul Newman, Racer, Remembered

During the 1970s Newman earned four SCCA national titles. In 1976 he took the D-Production class championship in a Triumph TR-6 once owned by racer Bob Tullius. In 1979 he took the C-Production class in a Bob Sharp Datsun 280ZX, and in 1985 and 1986 he won the GT-1 in a Sharp Nissan 300ZX. In 1979 Newman co-drove a Porsche 935 with team owner Dick Barbour and Rolf Stommelen to second place in the 24 Hours of LeMans. Most recently he was the co-owner of IndyCar team Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing (NHLR). Drivers for NHLR have included Mario Andretti, Michael Andretti, Nigel Mansell, Paul Tracy, Cristiano da Matta, and S├ębastien Bourdais

(Mike Spinelli-jalopnik.com)

Racing Enthusiast, Actor, Badass, Paul Newman Dies at 83

Unlike many of the coddled stars in Hollywood today, Paul Newman was a badass long before making it big on the silver screen. He was a regular old military guy who joined the Navy and served in WWII after getting kicked out of Ohio University for "unruly behavior."

(Enrico Campitelli Jr.-deadspin.com)

LEARY: Somebody Up There Likes Him

I had the privilege of photographing him many ti
mes over the last three decades and had the honor of presenting him with portfolios of my images and a copy of a Super 8 movie I took of him at Nelson Ledges in 1976, racing his Datsun 510 and Triumph TR6. I kidded him that it was the cheapest movie he ever made…less than twenty bucks including processing…but he made me feel like I had given him a gift of pure gold and wrote me a nice thank you letter.

(Greg Leary-speedtv.com)

Fox Sports has a PLN racing photo gallery up. Here's a sample:


Our favorite PLN memory comes from the SCCA Runoffs. The exact year escapes us, maybe 1999 or 2000, but PLN was there with his ex-Trans Am GT1 mount. He was just a regular racer, doing his thing that week. His thing just happened to be a lot faster than that of most people. RIP.

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Chaser #3: Camping World RV 400 presented by Coleman

Each week Ridebuyer delves deep into the misunderstood, oft terrifying, world of American saloon-car racing known as NASCAR.

This week: Camping World RV 400 presented by Coleman (Chase round #3)
TV: ABC 1:00pm EST (Sunday)
Location: Kansas Speedway (Kansas City, KS)
Distance: 267 laps/400 miles
Past winner: G. Biffle (9/07).

*Ode to Kyle Busch's season, upsets and underdogs*

- Kyle Busch led the points for 17 consecutive weeks before the Chase. Since the "playoffs" began, he has not finished inside the top-30 and has effectively ended his chances of becoming champion. He currently sits p12, 210 points adrift of Carl Edwards in p1. His title run is over. A valiant effort. But, as Lou Holtz would say, close only counts in horseshoes. Maybe sexual assault too. Yup, only sexual assault and horseshoes, definitely not NASCAR.

Busch's title was lost not solely by Busch, but was truly a team effort. His dismal "playoff" finishes to date were caused by mechanical failures. There is no indication that Busch played any role in causing those failures. Although, he could have been speaking to the mechanic who was supposed to be tightening the anti-sway bar in New Hampshire, thus distracting him, causing the cross-thread to end all cross-threads. Not likely, but possible. Barring that unlikely scenario, Busch's crew (the engine department not excluded) probably feels pretty damn shitty. Alas, those are the breaks of a cruel and fickle sport. Sorry Kyle and co. Perhaps next season.

When thinking about Busch's overall performance in stock cars this year, it's hard to fathom that not a single championship will be awarded to ridiculous-sunglass laden racer. It's like his season forcibly ended, not allowing its natural progression to play out. Sad really. (Unless you hate Kyle Busch, his team, Joe Gibbs, - those who saw him speak at the RNC should passionately hate him- Toyota, or some combination of all four. Then it's quite funny.)


Kyle Busch's 2008 NASCAR season.

3-1-08

-

9-21-08

RIP



-The biggest upset in the young college football season took place last Thursday night in Corvallis, OR. It illustrates the (kinda) longstanding rule in college football that no team is safe against a fired-up underdog and point spreads mean nothing. The Oregon State Beavers were 25-point dogs to the USC. 25 fucking points! Any team can beat any team at any time. It's what makes college football great. Motor racing certainly has some parallels to this. See: Joe Nemechek, Kansas Speedway, 2004. The habitual underdog scored a weekend trifecta when he won the Cup pole, the Nationwide race and the Cup race on the intermediate track. He is obviously looking for some luck this weekend at the track where beasted the competition four years ago. Check out Tom Jensen's notebook (speedtv.com) for more information on Front-Row Joe's baller Kansas weekend. It may not have happened this season, but NASCAR underdogs can-and routinely do-best the Hendrick Motorsports and Gibbs Racings of the world.

About this race:

*What to know:

One race/year? Not a problem: Kansas Speedway is part of a minority of tracks on the NASCAR schedule with only one Cup race date. This puts the track in the company of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the bastard step children of NASCAR circuits (that would be the road courses at Watkins Glen and Sonoma), Chicagoland, and Las Vegas. Everywhere else gets two Cup dates and thus have double the chances to cash on the NASCAR money gravy train. Good for them. For the racers, one would think visiting a track only once a year would be a tricky proposition for race car setups. Especially with the added pressure of this being a Chase event. However this a non-issue. All 1.5-mile tracks are the same. Really they are. There are tons of 1.5- mile tracks that Cup teams can draw information from. For a while, it seemed like a new intermediate track popped up every six months across the country. And NASCAR made it a point to put them all on the schedule. Every last one of them. Teams will have no problem setting their cars up for this event.

Jimmie loves Juan: Jimmie Johnson should send a big thing of flowers over to Juan Montoya and the entire Ganassi Racing team as they are the reason the defending champ will start from the pole on Sunday. Montoya ran the fastest lap in qualifying, but was ultimately disqualified for a technical infraction. That promoted Johnson to the top starting spot. The starting grid is a bit of cluster-eff with only one other Chase driver starting in the top-10 (Kenseth, p3). Carl Edwards , Kevin Harvick, Jeff Burton and Tony Stewart will all start outside of the top-30. (Starting grid)

"Hot" Carl from the rear: The point leader and consensus best-looking stockcar driver since Harry Gant will have a difficult task come Sunday. "Hot" Carl will take the green flag in 34th position after a qualifying run which was more than .5 sec. adrift of Johnson's pole speed. Relegated with the habitual backmarkers are Harvick and Stewart as well. Look for them to try
to hookup with Edwards and pick their ways frontward.


View Larger Map

Who to watch:

Greg Biffle: The winner of the previous two Chase events is also the defending race winner at KS. He will start Sunday's event in 18th, and should he win, that would be the third worst starting position for a Kansas winner in the event's brief tenure on circuit. The worst starting spot to win at KS belongs to Stewart, who rolled off p21 before rolling into victory lane in 2006. Biffle has three top-5's at Kansas and an average finishing spot of 11th.

Mark Martin: Martin was only .044 sec. off of the pole speed for this race. In the last four starts he's made this season, his worst finish was 8th in Pocono. He finished forth last week and has an average KS finish of 12.4 with one win (2005). Martin is a good value bet at 15/1 to win or even at 9/2 to place in top-3.

Jeff Gordon: The honor of most wins by a driver at KS belongs to Gordon. He won in 2001 and 2002. He has 40-career wins on intermediate circuits. 40 is a big number. He did not stumble as much as other Chasers in qualifying and will roll off in 13th.

*For those heading to the track:

Pertinent tailgating information is here. The following sentence from the track's website outlines the potential for lameness during the race:

Outside food or drinks, ice, coolers of any type and drink containers are not permitted through the grandstand gates.

Sorry folks, your drunkenness will have to be confined to the parking lots before the race.

The Ridebuyer cocktail of the race is the Singapore Sling. We are
not sure why. Remember to bring you Tom Collins glasses to the race. The umbrellas are an absolute must.




Points:

1 Carl Edwards

2 Jimmie Johnson

3 Greg Biffle

4 Jeff Burton

5 Kevin Harvick

6 Clint Bowyer

7 Tony Stewart

8 Jeff Gordon

9 Dale Earnhardt Jr.

10. Matt Kenseth

11. Denny Hamlin

12. Kyle Busch

Next race: Amp Energy 500 (Talladega Superspeedway). Final plate track of the season. One last chance to play wreck 'em. Tailgaters already in route.

Put down the back issue of "Racer" and look around

The sporting world is truly extraordinary. Bear witness to last night's Oregon State v. USC football contest where the seemingly infallible Trojans were over matched by the seemingly under performing Beavers. (There's nothing worse than a Beaver that under performs...Rim shot.) The highly touted USC-defense was torn apart by some kid named Jacquizz who may or may not be a troll. Wild. That shit should not happen. Yet it did, and does. The stick-and-ball world should (hopefully) provide the masses with other gems this weekend. There's a full slate of college and professional football games to choose from and the year's most enthralling weekend of baseball. The final regular season weekend for MLB is the sporting equivalent to the Ewan McGregor classic (?) Big Fish. It's a strange amalgamation of joy, sorrow, confusion and Albert Finney (sometimes). So, on what could be described a slower weekend for motorsports, we implore our loyal readership to take a look around and enjoy what the early fall sporting season has to offer. Christ, it beats speaking to your family.

FYI:

Any of the following scenarios will give Philly the National League East division title:

The Phillies sweep the Nationals.
The Marlins sweep the Mets.
The Phillies take two of three from Washington and the Mets lose once to the Marlins.
The Phillies take one of three from Washington and the Mets lose twice to the Marlins.

(Courtesy of the brilliant staff over at The Fightins)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

ESPN loves the import scene. Don't you?

Last week E-60 was rad enough to outline the racing version of figure skating, drifting. Now ESPN continues the quest to assert their hipness by talking about street racing. Swing and a miss. Strike two.



We're beginning to think Jeremy Schaap has an unhealthy relationship with Tyrese Gibson's character Roman from 2 Fast 2 Furious.

Stolen from the blogosphere

Perhaps no kick in the junk is quite as fierce and swift as those delivered by ticket-writing law enforcement personnel. Aside from sucking, speeding fines are largely unwarranted when dispensed and do nothing but further the plight of the middle class through monetary penalties that this dismal economy cannot support. It short, speeding tickets are as un-American as Vermont or buffets that are not all-you-can-eat.

The guys at Jalopnik have amassed a list of ten ways to avoid the dreaded speeding ticket, even after you have been pulled over by those damned Texas County Mounties.
Our favorite? #10:

But everybody poops. When the traffic cop suggests you hand over your info, make sure to bounce around with a pained look on your face. When the officer asks you what's going on just mention that you just had some greasy Thai food and you just have to beat the Lard Na home.

That should probably be #2 on the list. /Takes a bow and exits.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Aboriginal Stig

The tease for Top Gear Australia has hit the interweb!



People in the land of Fosters, silly hats and criminal descendants get their TG in few days (premiere September 29). When do we state-siders get our version? We're asking you Adam Carolla.

Side note, we actually considered auditioning for Top Gear Aus. True story. It was during our Jeremy Clarkson phase. Sad story.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Weekend recap

What you missed while watching the SEC slowly decimate all...

The waning laps of Sunday's Dover Sprint Cup event were about as good as it gets for spectators and the couch bound, not watching football crowd. The Roush Fenway Racing clan of Fords put on a circular clinic, with Greg Biffle, Matt Kenseth and Carl Edwards all getting scrappy. In the end it was Biffle taking his second straight win and solidifying his spot as a title contender. Speaking of the title, guess who's not going to win? Kyle Busch. He finished dead fucking last. Coupling with his 34th place run in New Hampshire, Busch's championship hopes have been dashed faster than those of the Browns.

Monster of a race- Biffle outruns Kenseth, Edwards for Dover win

It's of little consolation to the now Cup-disabled Busch, but he won the Nationwide race on Saturday. Mike Bliss finished second, just in front of Brad Keselowski.

NATIONWIDE: Busch Races To Eighth Win at Dover

The NASCAR Craftsman Truck race was in Las Vegas on Saturday night. Mike Skinner won. We know nothing else about the happenings. Nothing. Take it away Speedtv.

Oh, if you're thinking about becoming a NASCAR driver and getting hopped up on goofballs, don't.

While the final 20-laps at Dover were pretty damn entertaining, the race of the weekend goes to... Drum roll... J.R. Todd v. Tony Schumacher at the Texas Motoroplex. Schumacher who hadn't lost a round in the past seven national events was tardy off the line, giving Todd and his Lucas Oil team the win. The RT? Todd's .068 to Schumacher’s .084. Other pro winners were Tim Wilkerson (FC); Greg Stanfield (PSC); and Chris Rivas (PSB). It was the first career victory for Stanfield and the first time in NHRA history the reigning series champs were a collective 0-4 in final rounds at the same event. How about that?

NHRA: Todd Ends The Sarge’s Streak in Texas

The pride of Columbus, Ohio-Mike Shank Racing- took victory in the season finale for the Grand-Am Series. Raphael Matos joined regular Shank DP drivers Ian James and John Pew to win the SunRichGourmet.com 1000 at Miller Motorsports Park. Exhale. Of course, Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas already had the DP championship in the bag for Chip Ganassi Racing. In GT, Kelly Collins and Paul Edwards won the race and the title in their Pontiac GXP.R.



Michael Shank Racing a Winner at Miller

Also getting their Mormon on at Miller was the Atlantic Series. Markus Niemela became the seventh different winner this year in Atlantics. He started from the pole and beat Jonathan Summerton to the line. The title comes down to the season finale at Road Atlanta in two weeks. 10 points separate the top-three drivers. Jonathan Bomarito has an eight-point lead over Summerton, with Niemela two points out of p2.

ATLANTIC: Niemela Scores First Series Victory in Utah

Let us all have a phenomenal race week. On a side note, go Phillies. Fuck the Mets.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The race car, er, card

Hypothetical situation:

You're at work. You get into an argument with a coworker. It's a fairly heated argument. In a fit of rage, you say "I ought to cut you" to that employee. (We're talking cut, as in slice or shank.) The next day, you're fired. Is this fair recourse for your employer?

If your name happens to be Dean Duckett, and your ex-employer was NASCAR, than no, that shit's not right.

Last week, Duckett filed a complaint with the Buffalo department of the EEOC (clearly bringing in the big guns) citing a hostile work environment and wrongful termination from his tech position at NASCAR.

Duckett told the AP he is considering a lawsuit if NASCAR refuses to offer him his old job back (!?). Reread that last sentence.

Dear Dean,

You're not getting your job back. And if what you say is true, why would you want it back?

Signed-

Reasonable people.

The kicker in this story is that Duckett was named in Mauricia Grant's $250 million racial and sexual discrimination lawsuit against NASCAR. Duckett was accused by Grant of dumping water on a (female) NASCAR official to simulate a wet T-shirt contest.

Outstanding.

Former inspector issues discrimination complaint

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Chaser #2: Camping World RV 400 presented by AAA


Each week Ridebuyer delves deep into the misunderstood, oft terrifying, world of American saloon-car racing known as NASCAR.

This week: Camping World RV 400 presented by AAA (Chase round #2)
TV: ABC 1:00pm EST (Sunday)
Location: Dover International Speedway (Dover, DE)
Distance: 400 laps/400 miles
Past winners: M. Truex (6/07); C. Edwards (9/07); Ky. Busch (6/08).

*Crappy starts, sporting meltdowns and mistakes *

-It seems like Kyle Busch was the points leader for the entire season. Until now. Now he sits in eighth place and has back against the proverbial title wall. After one Chase race, his entire cushion has been eradicated to the brink of no return. Sure, Busch can still win the championship. It could happen. But he's used up his only Chase mulligan. Should the young Busch (hehe) stumble again, his title hopes will be over faster than Steve Wiebe can jump a plumber past a barrel. This would be a historic collapse. Taking into account Busch's performance in all of the NASCAR series' this season, not winning a single championship would be quite the fold up. Remember, at one time, Busch held the points lead in all three major NASCAR touring series. Sure, he ran truncated schedules outside of Cup, but damn, 18 NASCAR-sanctioned wins this year and not a single title. That would be rather bunk.

That got us thinking about famous bed-shitting moments across the world of sports and where the potential title-less Busch would fit in. Should this fold-up happen, we'd place it in sporting disasters, tier three. Here's how it plays out in our minds.

Tier #1. The bed, thoroughly shat.

2007 Mets: Lost 12 of their last 17 games. Seven game lead on September 12th gone by season's end. No postseason. South Philadelphia has never been the same.

1992 AFC wild-card, Oilers v. Bills: Frank Reich becomes a quarterback. Enough said.

1999 British Open, Van de Velde: VdV needed a double-bogey on 18 for the win. He triple-bogeyed, then lost in a four-hole playoff to Paul Lawrie. Think Roy McAvoy, but without the guidance of Cheech.






Tier #2. Trace amounts of poo on sheets.

2000 Western Conference Finals, game seven: Portland has a 15-point lead over the Lakers with 10 minutes to go in the fourth. The Blazers then saw Shaq and Kobe go crazy in a 15-0 run, which led the Lakers to win the series.

1986 World Series, game six: Bill Buckner, Sox lose in seven. Would be in tier #1, but Buckner is not solely responsible. He had plenty of help losing that game and the series.

Tier #3. Pants shat upon, bed safe and dry.


1996 Masters, Greg Norman: The Shark had a six-stroke lead going into the final round. He shot a six-over 78, tanking to Nick "don't call me Waldo" Faldo.

2008? NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Kyle Busch holds point lead for vast majority of "regular" season, only to finish the first Chase event in 34th, never to recover he finishes the season in 12th place, last of all the Chasers. Maybe.

Some might argue with the above list (go fuck yourself), but there's no question that should Busch not win the Cup title, his season would become a contemporary of the aforementioned disasters. Not the biggest meltdown, but list worthy no less.

About this race:

*What to know:


Where/what the hell is Dover? Dover is a high-banked mile track that is located halfway between Philadelphia and Washington DC. The track surface is concrete (which, for those not up with track construction materials, is not the norm). The track has the nickname the Monster Mile, which will be used extensively during the broadcast. ABC may even show the world-famous Dover monster statue which is terrifying as shit.

Gordon is the boss: Jeff Gordon has four career wins and four poles at Dover. He's pretty much a beast at DIS. He captured the pole for Sunday's race (race lineup) and has been competitive since the first practice session of the weekend. He also has an added incentive to perform at Dover. DuPont, Gordon's longtime sponsor, has their world headquarters just up the road in Wilmington, DE. Tax dodgers.

Avoid the little 'big one': Everyone knows that big restrictor plate tracks produce close racing and the inevitable huge wreck. Dover is not a big track and plates aren't used, but the chance for a multi-car accident is almost as high as it is at Daytona or Talladaga. Why? Because it's small and fast. You just don't have the time to get away from an accident. The field is so close, and going so fast you're on top of the accident before you can move from it. Just ask Kevin Harvick about that. He started in the back for the June race at DIS, got into the little 'big one' early on and finished 38th.


View Larger Map

Who to watch:

Jeff Gordon: 19 top-10 finishes for Gordon at Dover. That is a staggering number. 19. Jesus. He starts from the pole and is clearly the favorite to win. He finished fifth at Dover during the June race and is looking to impress those DuPont bigwigs who are traveling to Dover to see their guy. Sleazy sports betting sites have him 8/1 to win. Gotta say, we'd take that.

Greg Biffle: No one expected this guy to do much in The Chase. He made it in, good for him, he'd probably wind up eighth or ninth in the final standings and should be happy about that. Well, Biffle won last week and vaulted himself into third place, only 30-points outside of the lead. He has not finished outside of the top-10 at DIS since 2005 and finished p3 last time NASCAR was in DE. Momentum is a crazy thing.

Kyle Busch: The defending race winner is in dire need of a good run. Should he falter on Sunday his hopes of a title will likely be gone. He is historically good at DIS with five top-10 finishes. He starts 11th.

*For those heading to the track: Pertinent tailgating information is here. FYI, the real party takes place in the nearby Dover Downs Hotel and Casino. You should really hit it up after the race. We'd recommend renting a suite until at least October 10th, when the Dionne Warwick and Friends concert happens. We don't know who the "friends" are, but imagine they'd be special.

The Ridebuyer cocktail of the race is a case of Dogfish Head. Sure, it's a craft beer, and drinking it at a race will surely get your ass beat, but it's from DE! Tell us if it's worth the black eye.

Points:

1 Carl Edwards
2 Jimmie Johnson
3 Greg Biffle
4 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
5 Jeff Burton
6 Denny Hamlin
7 Tony Stewart
8 Kyle Busch
9 Clint Bowyer
10 Kevin Harvick
11 Jeff Gordon
12 Matt Kenseth

Next race: Camping World RV 400 presented by Coleman (Kansas Speedway). This is not to be confused with the Camping World RV 400 presented by AAA. That would be Sunday's race from Dover.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

RB on the road

Our latest Kerouac-ian journey takes us to the newest motor racing facility in the country. New Jersey Motorsports Park is conveniently (if you live in Philadelphia) located in south central Jersey in the bustling metropolis of Millville.

We recommend eating at the Subway attached to CVS in "downtown" Millville. The eatery was manned by two older Indian folks, who, while rather slow in the actual sandwich building process, produced a final product that was bloody delicious and worth the $5 foot long moniker. Jared and Tony Stewart would be proud. Check it out... You know, if you're in the area.



As one could imagine the track itself is very much a work in progress, with vast amounts of open dirt areas, high piles of oil dry and much construction equipment strewn about. The garages at Thunderbolt Raceway were completed and quite nice as was the entire paddock. A few bleachers were erected, one at start-finish and another on the back half of the circuit. These will surely be added to or improved as sight lines on the front stretch are fairly poor and the overall construction of the bleachers were not up to par. We saw a guy come very close to eating shit while climbing to a seat, as one of boards he stepped upon was not secured to anything. We almost lost a good man that day.





Both the Star Mazda and Atlantic-guys put on good shows. Standing starts for both series are worth the price of admission. Stand down in turn one (by the medical center) for race starts, the track narrows slightly and it’s about the best spot for overtaking.





  • Summation:

    Facility will be world class when construction is complete.

    The NJMP PA system and operator in serious need of upgrade.

    Frankie Muniz (Atlantic driver with PCM) is incredibly short and looks silly with facial hair, but Derrick Walker is a good-looking man.

    If the Atlantic series doesn’t exist next season, we will cry.

    Both the Chili’s and Subway in Millville are first class operations.

For those interested in seeing Jersey in the almost-autumn (who isn't?), ARCA and Speed World Challenge will be at NJMP at the end of the month. It’s worth the trip. Probably.




As if it wasn't clearly obvious from the video, NJ state officials have cited "catastrophic mechanical failure" as the cause of the fatal Scott Kalitta wreck in June. (ESPN)
Richard Childress Racing thinks the economy is just fine, thank you. RCR also has a yacht that magically raises the water level for all lesser boats in the ocean. Yes, that was a voodoo economics joke. (scenedaily.com)

8-Mile racing

In honor of Penske Racing entering a third RS Spyder for Petit Le Mans (driven by a couple of open wheel guys named Castroneves and Briscoe), we'll let you take a few hot laps around Detroit in the LMP2 challenger. Just don't stop at red lights, or bands of hooligans will swipe the wheels.

Pedigo somewhere else

What will be the next step for IndyCar's less talented version of Erin Andrews? There is no possible way Brienne Pedigo will make the transition to Versus' coverage next season (right?), so where could the first lady of pit lane coverage land? She could continue with ABC/ESPN is some regard, but what that regard is, is the question.

We're thinking AFL or WNBA. Just throwing it out there.

Your thoughts?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Weekend recap

What you missed while watching Charlie Weis do his best impersonation of Tom Brady.

Crazy things happen in Formula One racing when rain is involved. Case in point: Sunday's Italian Grand Prix on a soggy Monza circuit. Torro Rosso driver Sebastian Vettel won. From the pole. Confused? Bob Varsha can explain the happenings:



Vettel triumphs from pole to become circuit's youngest winner

Chase race #1 went to Greg Biffle. That would be the same Greg Biffle who last won a Cup event in September of 2007. Perennial points leader Kyle Busch is no longer The Chase leader (that lasted) as he finished 34th, 12 laps down. "Hot" Carl Edwards finished p3, putting him atop of the Chase standings. Biffle now sits in Chase p3, with Jimmie Johnson in second. Busch is now in eighth. Joey Lagono, making his first Cup start, finished three laps adrift in 32nd.

Next week: Dover.

Biffle -- yes, the Biff -- wins Chase opener at New Hampshire

Chase Standings

The Craftsman Truck Series was also at NHMS where possible juicer Ron Hornaday won. But, honestly, wouldn't you just rather see the video of the Bodine crew v. David Starr fight? Yes and Yes.



Hornaday earns victory at Loudon to cap tough week

Tony Schumacher may never again lose a race. He's won seven events in a row (still undefeated since the NHRA shortened fuel races to 1000-feet), and Sunday scored his 53rd career victory, moving past NHRA longtime record holder Joe Amato. Not a bad way to start off the Countdown to One. Other pro winners Jack Beckman (FC), Justin Humphreys (PSC) and Steve Johnson (PSB).

NHRA: Schumacher Breaks All-Time Wins Mark

There could be a new "Hot" Carl in the motor racing world, as Carl Skerlong claimed his first career Atlantic Championship victory Sunday at New Jersey Motorsports Park. The Pacific Coast Motorsports driver led every lap and scored the max amount of points available for the weekend. Other notables were Greg Mansell (p7, career best), Frankie Muniz (p10, ties best run of season) and points leader Jonathan Bomarito (p9). Also competing at NJMP was the Star Mazda Series, where Peter Dempsey won his forth race in the last five rounds.

Yes, we were at the race. Thoughts: Hot, dusty, nice facility. Full report, with pictures (!), to come. Big time.

ATLANTIC: Skerlong Becomes Sixth Different Winner

STAR MAZDA: Dempsey Gets Another Win in Jersey

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Chaser #1: Sylvania 300

Each week Ridebuyer delves deep into the misunderstood, oft terrifying, world of American saloon-car racing known as NASCAR.

This week: Sylvania 300 (Chase round #1)
TV: ABC 1:00pm EST (Sunday)
Location: New Hampshire Motor Speedway (Loudon, NH)
Distance: 300 laps/317 miles
Past winners: D. Hamlin (7/07); C. Bowyer (9/07); Ku. Busch (6/08).

*How to handle the make-believe playoffs, why Tom Brady made the Loudon crowd tolerable and why we're not watching Sunday's race*

-The next ten weeks will decide who becomes the NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion for the Lord's calender year 2008. Christened the "playoffs" by decision makers inside of the shadowy fortress know as NASCAR headquarters, the new(ish) system was clearly implemented to compete against stick and ball sports in terms of relevancy. A ten week "playoff" during the autumn months generates buzz (whatever the hell that means) for the sport and keeps it on the media radar during a time when professional and collegiate football gets rolling and baseball becomes entertaining. Or so the theory goes.

Whichever one of the France's came up with this idea is really off base.

Save the die hard base of the sport, there is too much competition for viewers and spectators to jump aboard the racing "playoff" train.

The casual sports fan, hell, even the casual racing fan, is far more likely to watch a Sunday afternoon NFL game than a "Chase" race. Right? We say yes.

A valid argument could be made that stock car racing fans and stick and ball types are two completely exclusive sects of folks who will never, under any circumstance, follow a sport that is not what they currently follow. A guy who watches baseball, takes his scorebook to games and understands what the hell OPS is, is not going to split his time in October to watch a saloon car race from Martinsville.

It's all a matter of competition. NASCAR should not compete with the NFL or (to a lesser extent) MLB. That's a fight that cannot be won. NFL games are the big dicks of TV ratings, and MLB
games, with their mostly tepid ratings, are still a cash cow for game attendance. It is a crowded marketplace and America's racing series is, if not careful, going to fall through the cracks.

Knocking ten races off of the Sprint Cup calender solves this issue. The season is far too long to begin with, straining teams and making people lose track of the sport. Who remembers this season's Daytona 500? It was in fucking February. The is season is still going. That's ridiculous. It has become a full time job to follow the damn series. In case you didn't know: jobs suck.

If the NASCAR brass want to keep the "playoffs," fine. Just have The Chase end this weekend, instead of start. That way we can crown a champ, and be done with it by the time NFL week three rolls around.

But for now, we'll just have to wait and pretend to care until the end of goddamn November. Don't fear, will be with you each race of the way. If this is your first Chase, our only advice is to have a healthy supple of booze on hand for the races and don't, under any circumstances, change the channel. If you stumble across a football game, you may not be able to flip back. The horror.

Note: 40-oz cozy = race necessity.



-Hopefully the Tom Brady injury will shut the droves of smug New Englanders who travel to NASCAR's northernmost race the fuck up. NHMS is the only foray for the Sprint Cup into the great north wilderness and that's almost certainly because of the general douchebagery of the population. Everybody not from New England hates New England and anything to knock those 'r' dropping bastards down a few pegs is awesome. Take that Tom. Any Bostonians thinking of driving up to see the race, you may want to b.y.o. as they don't sell Sam Adams track side.

-We hope Sunday's race sucks, because we're not going to see it. That's because RB is going on a roadtrip. Destination? The brand new New Jersey Motorsports Park. We'll be slumming the Jersey turnpike to catch the Atlantic and Star Mazda events on Sunday. Hopefully these broads will swing by after their weekend in Seaside Heights. Bada. Bing.


About this race:

*What to know:

Line 'em up on points: Rain has washed away the qualifying session for Sunday's race. That means the field is set by owner points. The top-12 is all Chase drivers, so the people who actually matter will start up front. Not, that starting position is all to critical at NHMS, as Kurt Busch won the last event starting in 26th. Starting Grid.

Christ in a stock car makes first start: Joey Logano is making his first career Cup start on Sunday and will roll off the grid in 40th. If you haven't heard of Logano you clearly don't give a shit about stock car racing and the future of the sport. He is touted as the most talented driver to come thorough the ranks in years, if not ever. Mark Martin said he could be a competitive Cup driver when Logano was in karts. In 12 Nationwide Series starts this season, he has nine top-10s and one win. Sunday, he will be driving the Hall of Fame Racing No. 96 Toyota as one of six Cup races this season planned for the teenager. Logano will be a 2009 rookie next season when he takes over Tony Stewart's No. 20 Toyota at JGR. Does the youngster fold under the pressure and return to the life of a normal 18-year old wrought with smoking cigarettes, reading The Catcher in the Rye and constantly masturbating? Probably not.

"Hot" Carl v. Busch, (Chase) round one: The biggest storyline of late has been the arrival of "Hot" Carl Edwards as a legit contender for the championship. Kyle Busch looked to have a lock on the title just six weeks ago, but Edwards and crew have opened things up right in time for the "playoffs." It also helps the interest factor because both guys appear to hate each other. Nothing says NASCAR like a good old fashion rivalry. Yee Haw.


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Who to watch:

The Chasers: Starting The Chase off in a hole is not the way to find success come November. Being behind the eightball after race #1 is an easy way to quell championship aspirations. So, watch the top-12 and see how many (if any) fuck this race up. Refresher. Here's the playoff guys: 1 Kyle Busch 2 Carl Edwards 3 Jimmie Johnson 4 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 5 Clint Bowyer 6 Denny Hamlin 7 Jeff Burton 8 Tony Stewart 9 Greg Biffle 10 Jeff Gordon 11 Kevin Harvick 12 Matt Kenseth.

The Field: See if anyone can play spoiler come Sunday. Yes, look for the Washington Nationals of NASCAR. Ryan Newman, Brian Vickers and Kasey Kahne could all toss a wrench into the well placed plans of Chase teams. Also, watch the aforementioned Logano, plus Kurt Busch has had success at NHMS in the past.

*For those heading to the track: Pertinent tailgating information is here. The 14 inch or less cooler restrictions will enforced with an iron fist.

The Ridebuyer cocktail of the race the queer craft beer of your choice. You must drink it while looking down on others who are enjoying lesser brews.

Points:

1 Kyle Busch
2 Carl Edwards
3 Jimmie Johnson
4 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
5 Clint Bowyer
6 Denny Hamlin
7 Jeff Burton
8 Tony Stewart
9 Greg Biffle
10 Jeff Gordon
11 Kevin Harvick
12 Matt Kenseth

Next race: Camping World RV 400 presented by AAA (Dover International Speedway). A NASCAR race with an on site casino? God Bless you.
A.J. Foyt recaps the final points event of the IRL season, runs Franck Perera out of fuel in the process. (USA Today)

NASCAR's doping scandal?

Remember the day when the Mitchell Report was released? Droves of sporting fans (us included) could not wait to peruse the juicing manifesto to see if their hero's had indulged in taboo ointments and performance enhancing shots in the ass.

Sure, the guys that everyone expected were listed in the report. The Canseco, Bonds and Giambi's of the world were called out. But the best was getting to read the names that made everyone shake their collective heads. (Ahem. Paul Byrd. Ahem.) Guys like Mike Stanton and Paul LoDuca, if truly using, must have been doing something wrong. They must have been injecting the ointments or smoking something that should have been shot-up. Or something. Mike Stanton? Really?
Well, America's favorite saloon car racing series now has an absurd performance enhancing drug allegation story of their own. It revolves around defending NASCAR Craftsman Truck champion Ron Hornaday and shipments of testosterone and human growth hormone. Sweet.

Hornaday says the testosterone was used to treat a hyperactive thyroid.


NASCAR officials are determining if this constitutes a violation of their drug policy.

All Hornaday needs to do is write a book about finding Christ and battling a porn addiction, and he will be Paul Byrd.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Cindy McCain's favorite movie? The Fast and the Furious III

In one of the odder campaign revelations of late, E-60 has blown the lid off of Cindy McCain's secret passion. Filipino teenagers? Nope. Weirder.

John McCain's wife has a thing for drifting (the burnout-laden motorsport, not being a derelict).
Take it away Lisa Salters, as we are too horrified and flabbergasted to type.





BFF's?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

New N'wide Challenger looks like a Challenger!

Stolen from the Blogosphere this morning, the guys at Jalopnik posted pictures of the new Dodge Challenger Nationwide machine. The car is built to CoT specs and is set to debut next season. NASCAR has apparently relaxed on some of the body restrictions for the new N'wide machines and the result is a car that actually looks similar to a Dodge Challenger. How could this car possibly lose to a Taurus or Camry?


Monday, September 8, 2008

Weekend recap

What you missed while watching Tom Brady get hurt, Willie Parker's impersonation of a beast and Erin Andrews flip the bird.

The first season of blissful marriage between the IndyCar Series and Champ Car came to an end Sunday in Chi-town. Scott Dixon was able to finish higher than eighth, thus clinching his second championship for Target Chip Ganassi Racing. Heilo Castroneves finished p2 in both race and title, or so was initially reported on timing and scoring. You see, the timing and scoring monitors said Dixon had won the race by .001 seconds. This was relayed to Dixon and he eloquently spoke abut winning both the race and championship while receiving his big cheque. See below. Someone then looked at the photo finish image and decided that HCN indeed won the race (the official margin of victory was later determined to be 0.0033 seconds, the second closest in IRL history). Vince Welch told HCN that he won the race, he celebrated and TV coverage ended approximately 15 seconds later. It was truly odd.



Until next season, IRL...

Dixon seals IRL crown as Castroneves wins nail-biter

The field for The Chase is set. It took a day longer than expected because of a bloody hurricane, but it's now set in stone. Nothing really bomb-tastic happened in Richmond, as David Ragan and Kasey Kahne were unable to race their ways into The Chase. When The Chase starts Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Kyle Busch will have the #1 seed with 5,080 points. (5,000 base points, plus 10 points for each of his eight victories.) Carl Edwards will be seeded second with 5,050 points. Jimmie Johnson, who won Sunday’s race will begin the Chase with 5,040 points. Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Burton, Denny Hamlin and Jeff Burton each will have 5,010 points and Greg Biffle, Kevin Harvick, Tony Stewart (p2 at RIR), Matt Kenseth and Jeff Gordon will all have 5k. Make sense?

CUP: Chase Field Set

Felipe Massa was declared the official winner of the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps after first-to-finish-line Lewis Hamilton was penalized for straight-lining a chicane. During the alleged course cutting, Hamilton was deemed to have not let Kimi Raikkonen properly repass after the Brit passed the Fin. So, officially, Hamilton finished third, BMW Sauber's Nick Heidfeld got moved to p2 and Massa won. Hamilton's lead in the drivers' standings is reduced from a potential eight to just two points with five races to go. Oh, Hamilton and Co. are appealing the the ruling.

BREAKING NEWS: Massa Handed Spa Win

The Nationwide Series event was postponed because of the aforementioned hurricane. The race ran last night and "Hot" Carl Edwards won. Good for him.

Edwards edges by Bowyer for fourth Nationwide win

Friday, September 5, 2008

**RICHMOND UPDATE**

As predicted in our race preview, there has been a scheduling change for this weekend's NASCAR events at RIR.

Saturday night's Sprint Cup race was postponed until 1 p.m on Sunday.

Tonight's Nationwide Series race was also postponed. It will run at 7 p.m. on Sunday.

Damn you Tropical Storm Hanna! You made our entire weather related preview seem silly....