Carl Long Announces Plans to Start & Park; Is Fined by Nascar

Veteran independent driver Carl Long has announced that he is forming a Nationwide Series team for 2014, one that will primarily start & park until adequate sponsorship can be found.  Nascar, in response, has immediately fined Carl Long $50,000 for Conduct Detrimental to Stock Car Racing.
How I imagine the ceiling in
Brian France's office looks
"We at Nascar support all our independent owner-drivers--all five of them--to the fullest", Nascar Chairman Brian France said.  "However, we can't have someone just coming out and SAYING that they're going to do what's best for their team and its employees.  We MUST maintain the illusion of competition for our TV partners."
Long has been previously fined by Nascar at the 2009 Sprint All-Star race weekend for having an engine 0.17 centimeters too large, and was fined at the final Cup race at Rockingham for violating the laws of physics.
"As a repeat offender, we had to enforce a zero-tolerance policy on Mr. Long", said France, who reportedly had been spending most of his time this week in his Daytona Beach office trying to throw pencils into the drop ceiling.  "At Nascar, we can not and will not tolerate such a blatant display of honesty.  Jeez, even saying 'The H Word' makes me feel sick."
Long could not be reached for questioning, as his team does not have a building yet.  However, he did release a brief statement through his website/message-board.
"We will appeal this fine from Nascar, as soon as someone can give me a ride to the R&D building in Concord (North Carolina)", Long said.  "With that being said, would all the Dodge weirdos PLEASE stop messaging me."

Santa Claus: Nascar Fan? A Spade Racing Investigation

"Marge, you know who I'm talking
about--he used to drive that blue car"
Its that time of year again, when we take some time to celebrate the birthday of that long-haired individualist, the son of the King, who changed the world for ever.  But in addition to honoring Kyle Petty, its also Christmas time.  We all know that Santa Claus delivers gifts to all the good girls and boys (well, the ones whose parents have money) every Christmas Eve--but is Santa a Nascar fan?

Well, I'm here to say YES, he is!

Just look at the evidence uncovered during a recent in-depth investigation (and by "in-depth", I mean stuff I found on Google)

Santa fulfills MY X-mas wish by
blowing up Michael Waltrip Racing
--Go to any Nascar race, and you'll find at least one guy with a huge white beard and a pot belly.  Chances are that its either Santa himself, one of his helpers, or your middle-school shop class teacher.
--Santa's distinctive facial hair is actually a tribute to legendary broadcaster/ranter Dave Despain.
--Santa has 8 (or 9) reindeer, having maintained one of the longest-lasting multi-racer teams in motorsports this side of J.D. Stacy.  And just like J.D., he doesn't pay his racers either.
--The REAL reason Santa wears red and white is because he got stuck with just as much Dale Jr. Budweiser merchandise as the rest of us.

So there you have it, irrefutable proof that Santa is a Nascar fan.  Be sure to check back in next year for my investigation into Satan being an IndyCar fanatic.

Mid-December "News" and Notes

So wealthy he sponsored himself!
--Despite the pleas of fans, angry comments online, and calls to simply retire the number, they went ahead and brought it back.  Personally, I am completely AGAINST sullying the legacy of Steve Grissom by running the sacred #41 for Kurt Busch.

--Jeremy Mayfield's foreclosed mansion will be set on fire soon for firefighter training.  When reached for comment, Mayfield replied, "I like meth".

--Sometimes sponsors come together in natural pairings:  Bass Pro Shops equipment lubricated with Mobil 1 oils.  Bush's Baked Beans served with food barbecued over Kingsford Charcoal.  Cheerios, made part of a complete breakfast with delicious Dow Chemicals.
Yeah, I'm still jealous of Jay

--In the Nationwide Series, James Buescher has left his father-in-law's team (Turner-Scott) to run for RAB Racing.  The team is said to have some major sponsorship announcements forthcoming, which is to say that they'll have a blank hood at Daytona.

--Johanna Long, meanwhile, is without a ride for 2014.  But if she's out of Nascar, who will people have to pointlessly compare to Danica Patrick?

--Speaking of Danica, thanks to Nascar's tv deal, virtually nobody saw the Sprint Cup Awards Ceremony.  Then again, considering that Jay Mohr was hosting, that could be a VERY good thing.

The Second-Annual (currently unsponsored) Hoodie Awards

WARNING: Trophy may not
actually exist
Thanks to the invention of graphical wraps for stock cars, special paint schemes aren't so special anymore.  Instead of freaking out about Burger King replacing Mom N' Pops on Dale Earnhardt Sr.'s lower quarter-panel, anybody can be a sponsor for a single race.  On the plus side, it makes it easier to promote a company.  On the negative side, it means we fans have to listen to announcers whine about how hard it is to follow the cars.

But who's the most prolific at putting different sponsors on their cars?

That's where I come in.  Using the indispensable Jayski Paint Schemes page, I went through to count the number of different sponsors on each car's hoods.  The team with the most will then become the Second Annual Hoodie Award Winner.

Just a few ground rules:
--Sponsors owned by the same company (like Stanley & DeWalt, or Kingsford & Clorox) count as separate sponsors.  But if its the same company with a different product (like 3M & 3M Filtrete), that counts as the same sponsor.
--Slight variations on a primary sponsor don't count--there has to be a change to the paint scheme noticeable to someone besides a die-cast geek.
--"Sponsorship partners", where a product sold by the sponsor is put on the hood, don't count either, since the company is a partner, not a sponsor.  Sorry, Paul Menard fans.
--Team owners who put their own company on the hood also don't count--so Medallion Financial (owned by RPM honcho Andrew Murstein) and Taco Bell (franchised by Front Row owner Bob Jenkins) don't count.  A special exception was made for, since they sponsor so many teams.  Same goes for blank hoods (aka the Michael McDowell Special).
--Modern iterations of the "Special Paint Scheme" don't count either--so movie cars, tv show cars, etc. aren't counted towards the final total, unless they are the legitimate sponsor of the car for that race.

Listed in order from least sponsors to most

10 Danica Patrick: 1  GoDaddy  Next year GoDaddy's joined by Aspen Dental, which will force Danica to fake-smile a LOT more.
Still can't believe this car
passed inspection
21 Trevor Bayne: 1  Motorcraft  Ironic that one of the oldest sponsors (Ford Motor Company) sponsors a driver who's a one-race wonder--kinda like if GE sponsored a Rockwell reunion tour.
27 Paul Menard: 1  Menards  The King of Sponsorship Partners retains his crown in 2013.
48 Jimmie Johnson: 1  Lowe's  One sponsor, one driver, one team, and more color variations than a hippie's acid-trip.
56 Martin Truex Jr.: 1  Napa  How happy do you think Martin is that he no longer has to do lame commercials with Michael Waltrip?
78 Kurt Busch: 1  Wonder Bread  Team owner Barney Visser owns Furniture Row, who sponsored the car in all but one race.  Because nothing goes together like a new mattress and white bread.
42 Juan Pablo Montoya: 1 Target  Next year Kyle Larson takes over for the Prince of Sponsorship Partners.

Next year:  Grady's Apple Ale
2 Brad Keselowski: 2  Miller Lite, Redd's Apple Ale  A new sponsor (rumored to be Alliance Auto Parts) joins Miller in 2014.  Look for Brad to welcome his new partner with a half-hour long philosophical interview.
11 Denny Hamlin: 2  FedEx, SportClips  A perfect combination for those who like to mail their hair trimmings worldwide.
13 Casey Mears: 2  Geico, Valvoline NextGen  Next Gen:  Recycled Oil.  Geico:  Recycled commercials.
22 Joey Logano: 2  Shell/Pennzoil, AAA  "Hello, Triple-A?  Yeah, I need some roadside assistance--some big fat guy is trying to beat me up!"
93 Travis Kvapil: 2  Dr. Pepper, Dominion Raceway  One of the team's owners is a Burger King franchisee, so "Having it YOUR way" means getting virtually nothing from your main sponsor.

20 Matt Kenseth: 2.5  Dollar General, Husky Tools/Home Depot  Husky Tools is wholly owned by Home Depot, so while they were treated as separate sponsors, they're really the same company.  Why no, I DON'T have a girlfriend--how did you guess?

19 Mike Bliss: 3  G-Oil, MediaMaster, GPI  ...and they have so much to show for it!
24 Jeff Gordon: 3  AARP, Axalta/Cromax Pro, Pepsi MAX  AARP Drive to End Hunger retains its How Does This Sponsor Make Sense award.
30 Too Many Drivers: 3  Widox Wax, Lean1, Genny Light  Next season:  Twice the cars, all the 30th-place finishes.
That reminds me--I gotta wax my

38 David Gilliland: 3  Dockside Logistics, EZPawn, Love's Travel Stops  A great combination for anybody who's driving long-distance to sell their boat fast.
40 Landon Cassill: 3  Interstate Moving Services, Moon Shine, Pirate Oilfield  "ARRR, we be frackin'!"
55 Mark Vicktrip: 3  Aaron's, Toyota Camry, Jet Edge  Aaron's takes over full-time next season, assuming that Brian Vickers makes all his weekly payments on-time for the car.
83 David Reutimann: 3  Dr. Pepper, VooDoo BBQ, Horizon  I get the feeling that Dr. Pepper doesn't even realize that they're sponsoring BK Racing.
95 Reed Sorenson, etc.: 3, JTS, DishTV  Next year Michael McDowell takes longtime sponsor Black Paint with him to this car.

7 Dave Blaney: 4  SANY, Florida Lottery, Ultra Race Wheels, Go Pro  At least next year they'll only have one-and-a-half sponsors with Pilot/Flying J.  WHY they stick with Michael Annett?  The world may never know.
Can you get this at The Pete Store?
9 Marcos Ambrose: 4  Stanley, DeWalt, Bostich, Mac Tools  Dull Pointless Fact:  All four of these companies are owned by StanleyBlack&Decker.
18 Kyle Busch: 4  M&M's, Interstate Batteries, Snickers, Doublemint  It'll be tough for anyone to top Rowdy's synergy of Likable Sponsor, Unlikable Driver.
35 Josh Wise: 4  MDS, The Pete Store, Carson-Newman University, Blockbuster  That reminds me, I have some Petes I need to exchange.
88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.: 4  National Guard, Diet Mtn Dew, Time Warner Cable, Amp  Junior The Cable Guy?  ("Git 'Er 2nd Place!")

5 Kasey Kahne: 5  Farmers Insurance, Great Clips, Quaker State, Time Warner Cable, Pepsi MAX  Next year Great Clips steps up for many more races, looking to recapture the glory days of NBS 24/7.
A more-accurate Bondo scheme
14 Tony Stewart & Co.: 5  Bass Pro Shops, Mobil 1, Rush Truck Centers, GoDaddy, Code 3 Associates  I still don't know what Rush Truck Centers are--I imagine they're travel stops for long-haul spazzes.
16 Greg Biffle: 5  3M, Sherwin-Williams, Bondo, Fastenal, Meguiar's  3M owns most of the other sponsors on the 16 car (ACE Bandage, Filtrete, etc.).  3M:  Its like Dupont, but with much less intermarrying!
29 Kevin Harvick: 5  Budweiser, Jimmy John's, Rheem, Bell Helicopter, Bad Boy Buggies  But what about Good Boy Buggies, Kevin?
32 Timmy Hill & the Hillettes: 5  U.S. Chrome, OXY Water, Federated Auto Parts, C&J Energy,  They couldn't have run Timmy full-time--he would've completely dominated the rest of the field!

15 Clint Bowyer: 6  5-Hour Energy, Peak, Toyota Camry, KFC (I ate the bones), Gander Mtn. (Secure your firearms), Napa Filters  Apparently eating the bones makes your arm itch.
No affiliation with the old MTV show

36 J.J. Yeley: 6  UME, Golden Corral, Arrive Alive Delaware, IMCA, Accell, Nascar Day  If J.J. Yeley was MY designated driver, I'd be drinking a LOT more.
39 Ryan Newman: 6  Quicken Loans, Outback Steakhouse, State Water Heaters, Aspen Dental, Code 3 Associates, Wix Filters  Aspen Dental made sense for Ryan--after all, Aspen is known for its (Widow's) Peaks.

87 Joe Nemechek: 6  Maddie's Place Rocks, Royal Teak, The Counselor, The Wolverine, Belle Tire, ATI  If the movies were combined, and it was about a Wolverine who acted as his own legal counsel, I'd have actually gone to see it.
98 Michael McDowell: 6  K-Love,, Victory Junction, Hyde Park, The Bobby Bones Show, Ambient Edge  Six different sponsors wanted the Phil Parsons experience this year?  Seems kinda low.

34 David Ragan: 7  CSX (I brake for trains), Farm Rich,, Peanut Patch, Dockside Logistics,
Make it happen!
Love's Travel Stops, Detail Doctor
  Until they run a Chessie System special paint scheme, its just wasted money, guys.
99 Carl Edwards: 7  Fastenal, Aflac, Cheez-It, Frosted Flakes, UPS, Subway, Geek Squad  Carl doesn't look ANYTHING like a Geek.  Or a Duck.  But he DOES looks like a tiger who wears a red bandana around his neck.

Well, this is kinda close...

17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: 8  Best Buy, Fifth Third Bank, Zest, Nationwide Insurance, Ford EcoBoost, Fastenal, NOS, Valvoline NextGen  "I won Nationwide last season"--yeah, but you still have to wait in line to get your deposit--HEY, don't take my pen!
31 Jeff Burton: 8  Caterpillar, Sleep Innovations, FXI, Kwikset, Cheerios, Airgas, American Ethanol, Utility Trailers  Here's hoping NBC will sponsor Jeff in a few races next season, including a retro XFL New York-New Jersey Hitmen paint scheme.

I'll just take the cash equivalent
33 Little Joe's Big Roster: 10  Honey Nut Cheerios, Boot Barn, Shore Lodge, Canadian Tires, Dow Mycogen, American Ethanol, Bicycle Cards, Justin Workboots, ERC/TMone, KCI  Just goes to show that even the smallest team can win an award--well, actually, they didn't really win anything, so I guess its all pointless.
43 Aric Almirola: 10  Smithfield, Eckrich, Farmland, Gwaltney, STP, US Air Force, Rain Eater, Go Bowling, JaniKing, Transportation Impact  Last year's winner takes a step-back, as Smithfield (and its various subsidiary brands) took a larger role on the car this season.  I'd be annoyed, but anytime bacon comes to the forefront, I'm for it.
47 Bobby Labonte & The Dinger: 10  Kingsford, Clorox, Scott, House Autry, Charter, Bush's Baked Beans, Pine-Sol, Glad, Kroger, Wounded Warrior Project  A regular contender, they resorted to pretty desperate measures late in the season--for the last time guys, I DON'T want your car!  And tell Brad to stop hitting me with his fork!
51 Not Kurt Busch: 10  Brandt, Target, Shooters, SEM, Got Clams?, Tag Heuer,, Guy Roofing, Dallas (, Bruce Lowrie Chevy  Demerits for no smiley-face on the hood this year.

1 Jamie McMurray: 14  Cessna, McDonalds, Lexar, LiftMaster, Linksys, E-Z-GO, Advil, Hellman's, Banana Boat, Parade, Bad Boy Buggies, Bass Pro Shops, Bell Helicopter, Race with Insulin  Wow--it wasn't even close--and that doesn't include Auburn being on the hood courtesy Cessna!  Jamie, be sure to stop by my apartment sometime soon to claim your award.  Fine, its OK if you send Felix Sabates.
Gene Chizik was in Victory Lane
to help mop up the confetti.