Denny Hamlin Apologizes Profusely After Visit from “Advisors”

Martin Truex Jr.’s dominant day (and post-race interview) were overshadowed by a post-race fight between Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano.  Hamlin, who was defiant in his initial post-fracas interview, struck a contrite tone today, flanked by two large men referred to as his new “advisors”.
The "Advisors"
“I would just like to apologize for everything that happened yesterday”, a nervous-sounding Hamlin said earlier today, sporting what appeared to be heavily-bandaged thumbs.  “I was wrong to criticize a member of the Logano family, and I’ll never do it again—I swear.”
The large men beside Hamlin—both of whom spoke with thick New York accents—quickly spoke up on Denny’s behalf.
“Yeah, we all make mistakes, don’t we Denny?” one of them said as Hamlin vigorously shook his head in agreement.  “I’ve seen a lot of people make mistakes once—but they never EVER make them again.”
“Yeah, that’s for sure”, the other man said while filing his nails.  “I seen it everywhere I’ve worked—casinos, liquor distribution, gentlemen’s clubs—heck, even waste management.  But everyone always learns the same thing—don’t EVER go against the family.”
Hamlin continued to apologize, also stating that he hoped to “…get his car back from the impound lot” by this weekend’s race at Texas.

(Editor’s note: I tried to ask either of the two men what their business was in Nascar, but they simply handed me a stereo, said it fell off a truck, and told me to keep my mouth shut.)

Kyle Busch Stays in his F***ing Motorhome

In response to a recent comment by KBM Truck Series driver Todd Gilliland, driver and team owner Kyle Busch stayed in his freaking motorhome on Saturday.
“Todd had a good point”, Busch said from his friggin motorhome on Saturday evening.  “It looked like it was going to rain, so I decided to stay here for the night with my family.  Much more comfortable than hobnobbing on pit road.”
Gilliland appeared to be commenting on Busch’s criticism of his lack of success when he screamed for Kyle to stay in his fecking motorhome during his cool-down lap on Saturday.  However, Gilliland himself disputed this characterizing.
“He’s staying in his flurking motorhome because it might rain?  Good, good!  He actually said that, right?”, a nervous Gilliland told the assembled media in his post-race press conference.  “He’ll no doubt appreciate my looking out for his welfare—I mean, rain’s in the forecast, lots of traffic on pit road, nowhere to really go in the greater Martinsville area, I’m really just looking out for him.”
Gilliland’s first Truck Series win came despite nearly two years in top-flight equipment, prompting Busch’s criticism of his performance—or so it seemed.
“When Mr. Busch called my performance a 2 out of 10, he was just complimenting me”, Gilliland explained.  “He meant that out of the top-ten drivers in the series, I was easily one of the top two of them.  He’s always looking out for me, and me for him—that’s why I wanted to make sure he stayed in his forking motorhome.”
Gilliland said he would visit Busch in his fudging motorhome this morning to discuss his plans for next season.

Spade Racing Picks: Uncle Max vs. Mystery Picker—Martinsville

Before I head out on my weeklong vacation (last one of the year!) I’d like to ask this simple question—what the heck was Garrett Smithley thinking on Saturday?!?  He ruined my C.Bell pick in the Xfinity Series race!  And this isn’t the first time this has happened.
I suggest a system similar to the one we have at MY job for safety violations:
First—Verbal warning, must clean up mess
Second—Written warning, must review training procedures, loses spot in break room seating “pecking order”
Third—Reported to corporate, may result in termination, if not the employee is required to supply donuts to the next all-staff meeting
Fourth—Automatic termination, all contents of locker available to all

CUP SERIES First Data 500: Mystery Picker (1 win) picks Jimmie Johnson.  Favorite (4 wins): Kyle Busch—I’ll keep picking Rowdy till he comes through—or I get tired of it.  Next Favorite (3 wins): Chase Elliott—about the only place a Chevy can win (but I got the right one).  Dark Horse: Matt DiBennedetto—why not?

TRUCK SERIES Hall of Fame 200 (8 wins): Harrison Burton—about time he starts showing why he’s getting the 20 Xfinity ride next year (well, besides connections and sponsorship).

Opening a Sealed Box of 2019 Donruss Racing Cards PACK 22

Recently I got a sealed box of 2019 Donruss Racing Cards—24 packs, 8 cards per pack.  Join me as I go through the entire case, pack-by-pack, to see what awaited me. (Click any picture to enlarge)

PACK 22 OF 24: RP, Bobby, and Smiley

OVERVIEW: Another nice mixture—even if we get some repeats—of the past, present, and future.  We also get the full range of facial expressions, from Daneil Suarez looking like the happiest man in the garage to Bobby Labonte looking like he’s about to be audited.

SPECIAL SPECIAL: I don’t know why, but Donruss chose a picture of Brad Keselowski for his RACE KINGS card where it looks like he’s dancing a jig.

IN FOCUS: So you’re doing a card on Richard Petty.  And you’re mentioning how much he smiled when at the track.  Why the HECK would you choose a picture where he’s NOT SMILING?!?

SPOTLIGHT: Derek Kruas is NEXT IN LINE as his derring-do against Kevin Harvick is promoted.  Also, is it just me or is every driver in the K&N West Series sponsored by Napa?

SCORE: 7 contingency decals out of 10

Toyota to Withdraw from Nascar Due to Complains on Facebook Post

In a move that has shocked the Nascar world, Toyota Racing Development has announced that as of the end of the year they will no longer be involved in stock car racing.  The decision comes after a string of complaints posted to a Toyota Racing Facebook post earlier this week.
"WhAt AbOuT jEfFrEy EaRnHaRdT?"
“The will of the people must be honored”, said TRD spokesman Herman Blanche.  “We only realize now the amount of anger our mere presence in Nascar has caused the sport’s many fans, and will retreat from the sport effective the end of this season.”
The post in question—one in which three Toyota Camry’s were seen dueling for position with the caption, “Ready for Kansas?  We are!” prompted vitriol from a number of Facebook users, who took to the sponsored post’s comments section to register their disgust.
“Toyota in the sport is KILLING nascar!”, one user said, continuing with “This is why i don’t watch anymore!!!1!”  Another user said “I will NEVER support a company that sends money overseas—bring back Dodge to Nascar!”
The decision has already caused a major shakeup at Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota’s lead team.  A team executive was said to be frantically making phone calls to Chevrolet and Ford, as well as “a kind of a ‘Hail Mary’” email to a former Pontiac Motorsports marketing director.
“When we joined this sport over a decade ago, we were in it for the long haul”, Blanche said.  “But the complaints of a dozen or so people on a corporate social media post speaks volumes.  We’ll be pulling out our equipment, sponsorship, technical support, and millions of dollars as soon as possible.”
When word of the decision reached those who complained on said Facebook post, most celebrated while others wondered if this weekend’s race was on ESPN or TNN.

Spade Racing Picks: Uncle Max vs. Mystery Picker—Kansas

Fantasy Football?  Doing great—leading my division after a less-than-stellar start.
Baseball?  Got a nice bet on the Nationals to win it all.
Work?  Gearing up for the holiday with a rare late-October vacation in the offing.
Nascar?  Sure, I haven’t had a win for longer than I’d like, but I’m closer than ever to clinching a second-straight win over Mystery Picker!  And then the identity will be revealed to all!
(Editor’s Note: Due to contractual obligations, Mystery Picker will not be revealed until the final weekend of the season at Homestead).

CUP SERIES Hollywood Casino 400: Mystery Picker (1 win) picks Ryan Newman.  Favorite (4 wins): Kyle Busch—best way to avoid Martinsville and Phoenix drama?  Win at Kansas.  Next Favorite (3 wins): Kevin Harvick—will they celebrate with some slightly-aged Harvick Beer?  Dark Horse: Jimmie Johnson—still makes more sense than Mystery’s pick.

XFINITY SERIES Kansas Lottery 300 (7 wins): Christopher Bell—in which the “Big Three” stake their claim to the championship by all finishing in the top five.

ELIMINATORS—Spade Racing’s Elimination Race Breakdown

Cards take a break this week for a new, currently-ongoing series here as we take a look at who’s where with a Playoff round finale coming up.
Every girl's crazy 'bout an ad-vanced man

The last elimination race was the Charlotte Roval, a track unilke any other.  Now we have Kansas, a track exactly like about six others.  Thankfully we have plenty—well, some…um, well, a small sampling of Playoff drama.  With that in mind, here’s where the twelve Playoff drivers stand:

CLINCHED: Ryan Blaney and Kyle Larson.  RB & KLar—not just the name of a cheesy crime show coming this fall, but also the only two drivers who are locked themselves in with wins.

GOOD BARRING DISASTER: Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr., Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick.  This foursome, in addition to being a good choice for the final four, would need something bizarre to happen to not advance on Sunday.  Sorry, NBC, but you’re not getting much drama this year.

GOOD BARRING A BAD DAY OR A “WIN AND YOU’RE IN”: Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano—Keselowski (20 points above the cutoff) and Logano (18 points) are in to the next round with two caveats—they probably can’t afford a DNF and one of them could fall out if someone “pulls a Jeremy Mayfield” and wins their way in (hopefully without the decade of controversy to follow).




NEEDS A WIN: Alex Bowman, Chase Elliott, Clint Bowyer, William Byron.  While Bowman’s in the best shape of these four if BKes or JoLo implodes, all of them realistically need to win in order to advance.  And considering how Chevys have run this year on intermediate tracks, Bowyer might be the actual favorite of this quartet to race his way in.

Alex Bowman Still Thinking of Comeback for Bubba Wallace

Weeks after being splashed in the face on pit road, Alex Bowman confirmed that he is still thinking of a proper comeback for the assailant, Bubba Wallace.
“Splashing water in someone’s face, that’s a pretty big sign of disrespect”, Bowman said in an interview from Talladega.  “So its something I’ve been mulling over ever since.  I don’t want to go off half-cocked and say something dumb like ‘I’m rubber and you’re glue’ or ‘yer mom’”.
Bowman said he’s thinking of a number of ways, but is concentrating on a verbal taunt.
“I was thinking I sneak up behind him when he’s being interviewed and shake his hand, real friendly like”, Bowman said, looking thoughtful.  “Then, I say, ‘You got the splash, but I’ll get the crash.’  Only problem is it kinda sounds like I’m going to wreck myself, so I have to work on that one.”
Bowman has also considered more unorthodox methods of revenge.
“Maybe I sign him up for a bunch of calling lists so he’s getting bugged day and night by people wanting to sell him new windows”, Bowman said.  “Or here’s something I was thinking about this morning—I plant some kudzu in his yard so he’ll have to deal with that weed for the rest of the time he owns his house.  Then again, I’m guessing he has someone do his landscaping work, so scratch that one.”
The original incident—one that Wallace said was prompted by weeks of rough driving—has seen a renewed focus on Wallace, including a recent interview on “The Dale Jr. Download”.  Bowman, however, has received far less attention.
“I’m OK with sort of fading into the background”, Bowman said.  “If the price I pay for biding my time until I have a foolproof retort is a lack of focus on my race team, that’s fine.”
“By the way”, Bowman added, “we still don’t have a primary sponsor for next year.  I can’t figure out why.”

Spade Racing Picks: Uncle Max vs. Mystery Picker—Talladega PLUS pictures of Uncle Max at Dover

I had a great time in the pits and garage at Dover!  It was a really awesome time and, really, there were only two downsides—I wound up having to work about 60 hours this week to make up for my weekend off, and my nephew didn’t do the best of jobs with his pictures of me.  Well, enjoy below! (picks below pics).
Me standing behind one of the Budweiser Clydesdales on display outside the track.
My nephew Mike wouldn't stop making "Horsepower" jokes so I suggested we enter the track early.
Me giving my approval to one of the many many MANY stacks of tires in the garage.
Richard Childress wasn't very happy when I asked him POLITELY to throw the Xfinity race so my pick would come in.
My nephew's thumb blocks me talking to the Rick Ware Racing crew.
I jokingly asked if they needed a driver.  They not-jokingly asked if I had $5,000 handy.
I got cropped out of this shot with Matt DeBen...DiBennet...DuBonn...the 95 car driver.
Making my mark on Nascar.
Jeez, you bump into ONE CAR because you want a picture with it and suddenly they're having engine problems?!?
Our view from pit road.
Amazing enough to make me forget about my stagnating career, broken-down car, and high-rent townhouse.

CUP SERIES 1000 Bulbs: Mystery Picker (1 win) picks Kyle Busch.  Favorite (4 wins): Clint Bowyer—heck, I could pick Landon Cassill here and it would make about as much sense.  Next Favorite (3 wins): Aric Almirola—no better time to win your first race of the season than in the playoffs.  Dark Horse: Paul Menard—chance to go out a winner.

TRUCK SERIES Sugarlands Shine 250 (8 wins): Brett Moffitt—here’s hoping his team sticks around for next season.

Busch Beer Honors Censored Diecast Cars with Harvick Scheme

In a nod to the 1990s and many fans’ childhoods, Busch Beer’s Dover paint scheme pays tribute to the many “censored” alcohol and tobacco diecast cars of the past with today’s “All-Harvick” paint scheme.
Mike Helton returns from a hike
through the mountains of Delaware
“We remember what it was like to search the local toy store for a 1/64th diecast of your favorite driver, only to find that the sponsors were removed or altered due to being adults-only products”, an Anheuser-Busch spokesman said in a recent press-release.  “Therefore, in keeping with our recent spate of throwback looks, this weekend we honor those dummied-up model cars and kids-sized t-shirts of our youth.”
The scheme replaces all instances of the word “BUSCH” with “HARVICK”.  The team has gone all-out with the program, putting their crew members in “HARVICK” uniforms and even redoing the back end of their hauler.
“This really takes me back to my youth”, Harvick said from the track.  “I remember getting a Rusty Wallace ‘FORD MOTORSPORTS’ matchbox car for my birthday one year, and there was a kid at my school who always wore a Harry Gant t-shirt with just a blank green hood on the front.  Those designers were really artists in those days.”
Such censorship is still occasionally seen today, although some deny it.
“That’s nice of Kevin to run that scheme this weekend, but we really don’t do that much here”, said driver Brad Keselowski.  “After all, ‘BLUE DEUCE’ is one of our proudest sponsors, and we look to support ‘BLUE DEUCE’ anyway we can, mostly by putting their logos on all of our merchandise.”

Harvick later said that they chose to run the scheme at Dover due to Busch’s remarkably low market penetration in the area, which the company blames on the more than 1,200 microbreweries in the state.

Spade Racing Picks: Uncle Max vs. Mystery Picker—Dover

BIG NEWS!!!  My nephew Mike, the writer of this site, surprised me with an early birthday gift—he’s taking me to the Xfinity Series race at Dover on Saturday!  And we won’t just be there in the stands—we got pit passes!!!  Hope to have plenty of pictures and stories from the weekend, but I gotta go now—working overtime so I can take off on Saturday!

CUP SERIES Drydene 400: Mystery Picker (1 win) picks Martin Truex Jr.  Favorite (4 wins): Chase Elliott—unlike last week THIS pick will park his car in victory lane.  Next Favorite (3 wins): Denny Hamlin—didn’t FedEx used to sponsor this race?  Dark Horse: Jimmie Johnson—used to own this place, now he’s the rarest of the rare—a Delaware tourist.

XFINITY SERIES Use Your Melon 200 (7 wins): Christopher Bell—using my own melon to make this incredibly dull pick.

Opening a Sealed Box of 2019 Donruss Racing Cards PACK 23

Recently I got a sealed box of 2019 Donruss Racing Cards—24 packs, 8 cards per pack.  Join me as I go through the entire case, pack-by-pack, to see what awaited me. (Click any picture to enlarge)

PACK 23 OF 24: Joey Says Hello, DW’s Mellow, and Sooo Much Yellow

OVERVIEW: Yellow is the theme of this pack, supporting my belief that it just might be the most-overused color in Nascar.  We also get a particularly chill-looking Darrell Waltrip, perhaps due to finally getting a check from DiGard that cleared.

SPECIAL SPECIAL: I have no idea what Austin Dillon is trying to do in that picture, but it simultaneously looks realistic AND fake.

IN FOCUS: Joey Logano’s CONTENDERS card (which, unfortunately, came out blurry on the back) serves as a reminder of just how young he is while also reminds us just how long he’s been racing in Cup.

SPOTLIGHT: Ryan Newman’s OPTIC card tells a bit of a white lie when saying that “Talladega tests the skills and endurance of every racer.”  Well then why do guys like Lennie Pond and Bobby Hillin gets wins there and never win again?

SCORE: 6 fender rubs out of 10