Homestead-Miami Speedway to have 50-Year Limited Edition 2015 Ford Mustang Pace NASCAR races

15 MUSTANG

Photos via Ford Racing

In a fitting tribute to the continuing golden anniversary celebration of the iconic pony car, a 50-Year Limited Edition 2015 Ford Mustang will pace the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series races during Ford Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Nov. 14-16.

The Wimbledon White pace car, one of just 1,964 50-Year Limited Edition Mustangs built, will lead the field to the green flag for the Ford EcoBoost® 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race Nov. 16 and the Ford EcoBoost® 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series race Nov. 15.

Mark Fields, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ford Motor Company, will drive the pace car equipped with 5.0-liter Ti-VCT V8 engine, leading the Sprint Cup field to green for the final time this season. John Felice, vice president, U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service will pace the starting field for the Nationwide race.

A Race Red 2015 Mustang GT fastback will serve as the splitter pace car for the two races.

Built in Flat Rock, Mich., Mustang is all-new from the ground up. This sixth-generation, rear-wheel-drive car has the long hood and short rear deck lid proportions of its most iconic predecessors, as well as that low, wide stance, but its design is very much 21st century, with state-of-the-art engineering and technology.

Among the many new features on the 2015 Mustang GT is an independent rear suspension engineered specifically for this new platform and car. It also features an all-new state-of-the-art front suspension.

Mustang GT’s 5.0-liter Ti-VCT V8 engine generates 435 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. Two other engines — a 3.7-liter V6 and 2.3-liter EcoBoost® – will also be available when the car hits showrooms later this year, part of the Mustang stable of engines which all boast over 300 horsepower.

A pair of all-new 2015 Ford F-150 pickup trucks will pace the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Ford EcoBoost® 200 at Homestead-Miami Nov. 15.

Source: Ford Racing PR

Chase Rice never gave up and kept chasing his dreams, lands “Big One”

Graphic via Chase Rice Facebook Page

Graphic via Chase Rice Facebook Page

So what’s the connection between CBS, UNC, Country Music and NASCAR?

It’s twenty-eight year-old Chase Rice.

Born in Florida on September 19, 1986, son of Daniel and Connie Rice, brother to Chad. Chase was raised in Asheville, North Carolina. He attended AC Reynolds High School and attended UNC at Chapel Hill as the #44 linebacker for the Tar Heels football team from 2005-08. Rice selected the No. 44 because he “always liked linebackers with that number.” (Source: Goheels.com)

Rice had torn a tendon in his left ankle in his Junior year of college. He went through rehab and tried to come back hoping to tryout out for the NFL after graduation, but it just wasn’t the same and knew it.

“It was time to move on,” said Rice. That’s when he began to take music more seriously.

Chase Rice La Flor Tribe during the first episode of SURVIVOR. Photo via CBS Survivor

Chase Rice La Flor Tribe during the first episode of SURVIVOR. Photo via CBS Survivor

But then came Survivor: Nicaragua. Rice was selected as a cast member, which premiered on September 15, 2010. At the season finale, the jury chose Jud “Fabio” Birza as the title of Sole Survivor over Rice and Matthew “Sash” Lenahan in a 5–4–0 vote.  (As a side note for a little giggle, on this season of Survivor, there was a contestant named Jimmy Johnson, from Tallahassee, Fla. Unfortunately, Johnson was 3rd to be voted out on Day 8.) [You will understand this note as you continue reading!]

Chase Rice has come to the realization over a weekend visit that “life is extra twangy in Nashville” and that’s where he belongs. Rice moved to Music City in late 2010 to focus on Country music and to make his dream a reality and rented a house with buddies Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley – aka as Florida Georgia Line.

Rice sets that his father was his inspiration for his country career, recalling that his father once told him” anyone can play guitar, but no one is gonna really listen to you until you start singing.”

Back in April 2012, Rice’s Dirt Road Communion was released by his label, Dack Janiels and debuted on the Billboard Country Albums at #48 (go figure!) [You will understand as you continue reading!] chart and was the number six download on iTunes for that week.

And in no way did his appearance on CBS’s Survivor: Nicaragua help to launch his Country music career.

Only after Rice co-wrote “Cruise,” the No. 1 smash hit by Florida Georgia Line with a college room-mate, did his career start taking off. “Cruise,” the first single for Florida Georgia Line, reached #1 on the Country Airplay chart on December 15, 2012.  A remix of “Cruise” featuring Nelly later hit number 4 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song went on to spend 24 weeks at number 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart, setting a record for the longest stay at number 1 in the chart’s 70-year history, and was also ranked as the number one country single of 2013 by Billboard. [Source: Bing]

Rice’s newest album IGNITE THE NIGHT was released on October 15, 2013 and the single Ready Set Roll, became an instant hit. On January 29, 2014, the official Ready Set Roll music video premiered exclusively on CMT.

Ok, so by now I bet you are wondering why am I telling you about a Country singer and a college football linebacker?  What’s the catch?

Well, if you know me, you should know that there has to be a tie-in with racing if I am to write about it… at least somewhere, no matter how big or small.

So, here it is for those of you who did not know:

After graduating from UNC with a double degree in Management and Communications, Rice was selected to join the NASCAR Pit Crews for Ryan Newman and Jimmie Johnson. Rice worked a few years as a rear-ire carrier and was part of the crew for two championships with the Lowe’s team.

“There’s something awesome about being at the track that I just can’t explain,” said Rice. “But I knew that my dream was to be a musician. I worked there for a few years, and then decided to follow yet another dream.”

Wow, so how cool is THAT?

I would also like to do a special shout-out that Chase Rice will be performing at the House of Blues, Orlando, FL (my home town) on Oct. 16th and I will be there!

And who knows, if you don’t see Chase on stage in some city, you may very well see him at a NASCAR track near you!

Legendary NASCAR owner Junie Donlavey passes at age 90

Nascar Owner W. C. ''Junie'' Donlavey poses during a portrait session at the Richmond International Raceway on May 2, 2012 in Richmond, Virginia. Credit: NASCAR Via Getty Images

April 8, 1924 – June 9, 2014
Nascar Owner W. C. ”Junie” Donlavey poses during a portrait session at the Richmond International Raceway on May 2, 2012 in Richmond, Virginia.
Credit: NASCAR Via Getty Images

NASCAR Cup car owner Junie Donlavey in conversation with his driver, Ken Schrader. Credit: NASCAR Via Getty Images

NASCAR Cup car owner Junie Donlavey in conversation with his driver, Ken Schrader. Credit: NASCAR Via Getty Images

Legendary NASCAR owner Junie Donlavey has passed away at the age of 90. Donlavey suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.

Donlavey’s famous #90 car carried Rookie of the Year drivers three times (1970, 1980, 1985). Donlavey fielded cars in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series until 2002 – with 863 starts as an owner, one race victory, 60 top-five and 218 top-10 finishes.

Drivers who drove for Donlavey include NASCAR Hall of Famers David Pearson, Fred Lorenzen and Joe Weatherly, along with Tiny Lund, Bobby Isaac, Benny Parsons, Ken Schrader and Harry Gant.

Donlavey’s family spoke how Junie thought it would only be appropriate if he passed away at age 90 – the number featured on his stock cars.

To leave thoughts and condolences, go to:  http://nbc12.tributes.com

Michael Waltrip announces 2014 reorganization plan

michael_waltripMichael Waltrip Racing announced today its reorganization for the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup season, highlighted by two full-time championship contending teams, a third entry which will run a limited schedule and a strengthened research and development group.

MWR will field the No. 55 Aaron’s Toyota and the No. 15 5-hour ENERGY/PEAK Toyota in its pursuit of the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup championship. To enhance performance for its two full-time teams, MWR has bolstered its R&D effort and will run a third car in select races, including Michael Waltrip in the 2014 Daytona 500.

Martin Truex Jr., driver of the No. 56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota and his crew chief, Chad Johnston, each have been notified they are free to negotiate with other teams. Scott Miller, the team’s executive vice president of competition, will continue his role as crew chief of the No. 55 team into the 2014 season.

The reorganization enabled MWR to retain more than 85 percent of its current workforce. Those whose positions were affected by the moves were notified Monday morning.

“Today was about doing what we had to do not what we wanted to do,” Kauffman added. “It was important to let those whose jobs were affected know as early as possible, and a majority of those will remain with MWR through the end of the season.”

NASCAR.com responds over non-working RaceView, issues on newly revamped site

Race fans know by now that NASCAR.com have been dealing with some series issues with their new RaceView. Unfortunately, it left many fans scanner-less & leaderboard-less during the Sprint Unlimited. Even as of race time Sunday at Daytona International Speedway for the Daytona 500, the issues had not been resolved.

So why did they mess with a good thing? Who knows, but newer is not always better.

Most race fans who are paying subscribers for RaceView service, formerly known as RaceBuddy, received a letter the day of the race with a link directing them to their service:

Dear RaceView Subscriber,

NASCAR.com is experiencing technical issues with accessing the RaceView product. We want to acknowledge these issues with you and ask for your patience as we work through the problem.

We want to insure you enjoy your RaceView experience today and throughout the 2013 season. You paid for a product and obviously expect it to operate as promised – as do we. We are providing direct links into the RaceView
products to our subscribers to bypass some of the technical problems we are having with NASCAR.com.

To access RaceView Premium click HERE.
To access RaceView Audio (formerly Scanner) click HERE.

Note: We are granting all RaceView Audio subscribers access to the RaceView Premium link for the Daytona 500. You can receive all of the features of RaceView Audio plus the virtual video, if you choose.

We regret that these issues are impacting your enjoyment of the Daytona 500. We are working diligently to fix the problem moving forward and will communicate with you directly with the progress we are making.

If you have any questions about your subscription or need assistance, please visit our customer support center HERE.

Thank you for your support of NASCAR. Enjoy the race!

Sincerely,
NASCAR.com

Then after the Daytona 500, I received this letter:

Dear RaceView Subscriber,

We at NASCAR.com acknowledge the continuing access and performance issues associated with RaceView Premium for PC and RaceView Audio for PC. Prior to the Daytona 500, we attempted to implement several technical solutions in order to provide a working product. While many subscribers were able to successfully enjoy RaceView during the race, we understand there were many who continued to have problems.

NASCAR.com is not satisfied with RaceView at this point in time.
We are examining the entire process and technical operation, and
plan to communicate additional information on RaceView as we head into Sunday’s Sprint Cup Race at Phoenix.

We regret if these issues impacted your enjoyment of the Daytona 500 and
are working hard to make sure all RaceView Premium and RaceView Audio for PC technical issues are worked out.

But hey, don’t forget about us MAC users!! This is what I see on my MacBook Air (and yes, I install but it doesn’t do anything) every time I go to Raceview:

Screen Shot 2013-02-24 at 8.11.13 PMI’ve heard some negative fan feedback regarding the new NASCAR.com site. The number one complaint is that it is hard to navigate through and almost impossible to find things -unlike the old NASCAR.com site. My main downfall about the newly revamped NASCAR.com is that the font is way too small and is very hard to read.

You will see this little note to the fans (and yes, still in small font) on the NASCAR.com acknowledging the problems: We apologize. We are having technical issues with our comment sections and fan community and it is temporarily unavailable. We are actively working on these issues and hope to have it up and running soon. We are also working on enhancements to provide a better forum for our fans. We appreciate your patience and apologize for the inconvenience.”

So hang in their folks! Apparently NASCAR.com isn’t too thrilled with RaceView either and are trying to work out the other kinks within the site.

Recreational retreat proposed, approved at DEI

If you live in the Mooresville, NC area, you’ll have a new recreational area you can go to on the land of the late Dale Earnhardt where DEI is located. But just as long as you have a membership and a reservation.

DEI is the auto racing enterprise founded by the seven-time Winston Cup champion and for which Teresa Earnhardt continues to serve as secretary.

According to the Mooresville Tribune and the Charlotte Observer, Teresa Earnhardt, wife of the late racing great Dale Earnhardt, applied to transform 317 acres of wooded land behind her sprawling Dale Earnhardt Inc. race shops on N.C. 3 into a private recreational retreat offering horse-riding trails, archery, rodeos, paintball, an endurance course, live outdoor theaters, reserving fishing ponds to companies, weddings and educational groups. The facility will cater to “environmental and farm educational outings, wildlife observation and tent camping.”

The project will have 25 to 32 stalls for boarding horses. Poultry houses on the site will be torn down for a horse arena that could host rodeos and other horse competitions.

Despite opposition from neighbors concerned about traffic and noise, the board approved the permit 6-0. Parking for 300 people is planned, with overflow parking available on numerous grassy areas. The site would be available only to those with memberships, who would then have to make reservations. Activities also could be made available to horseback riding and fishing clubs and such non-profits as schools and the Girl Scouts.

Automaker designers ‘fa-la-la-la-tastic’ concepts, explanations on Santa’s Sleigh

I kept coming across these images of futuristic concepts of Santa’s Sleigh and thought, “What the heck… I’ll throw something together for fun to share with my fellow race fans. After all, it IS Christmas.”

After all, if it goes FAST….

So don’t take any of this seriously…it is for FUN. Please share with any young race fans, as I’m sure they will get a kick out of it and maybe even add a thing or two to improve these concepts.

ABOUT THE SLEIGH….

Graphic from http://web.ncsu.edu

Santa’s sleigh incorporates an array of advanced technologies.

Santa’s sleigh is far more advanced than any modern form of air transportation. The truss of the sleigh, including the runners, are made of a honeycombed titanium alloy that is very lightweight and 10 to 20 times stronger than anything we’ve ever seen in a lab.

But there’s more to it than that. The truss can also morph, altering its shape slightly to improve its aerodynamics – allowing it to cut through the air more efficiently. The runners on the sleigh, for example, have some flexure. This allows them to tuck in to be more aerodynamic during flight, and then spread out to provide stability for landing on various surfaces – such as steeply pitched roofs.

The sleigh is also equipped with electronics that are beyond military-grade, including laser sensors that can detect upcoming thermals and wind conditions to find the optimal path. This makes the flight smoother and more energy efficient and, as all aerospace engineers know, efficiency is key.

The focus on efficiency and a smooth ride has also led to the development of  a nanostructured “skin” for the sleigh that is porous and contains its own low-pressure system, which holds the air flowing around the airborne sled onto the body, reducing drag by as much as 90 percent.

GE’S EXPERIMENTAL SLEIGH

Graphic from green.autoblog.com

GE could make Santa’s reindeer obsoletein this General Motors concept sleigh. GE claims the addition of sodium batteries in power packs are only intended to offer the Reindeer much-needed breaks from pulling the sleigh.

Santa’s Sleigh also features self-powered OLED lighting so that there’s no chance of him missing your chimney. Moreover, the sleigh is assembled from lightweight composites, including a set of Ceramic Matrix blades and a body molded from carbon fiber.

CONCEPT SLEIGH by JAGUAR and LAND ROVER

Concept sleigh for Santa by Jaguar and Land Rover. Graphic by autoblog.com

Jag’s design features the unlikely addition of twin, rear-mounted propellers (which might make rooftop landings a little difficult — and noisy), snowspeeder-thingys particle accelerators and a painted mascot on its forward flanks that is definitely not Mrs. Claus. Plus, Santa wouldn’t have a reindeer in the front seat…

BENTLEY CONCEPT

Graphic by autoblog.com

Bentley designers took to the drawing boards and mixed a Bentley with the snow-covering ability of a downhill toboggan, complete with rifled tailpipes and exposed Bentley Blitzen powerplant as well as a sleigh with quad-outrigged headlamps and a goggled Santa.

LEXUS’S CONCEPT SLEIGH (Graphic Only)

Graphic by autoblog.com

FERRARI DESIGNED SANTA’S SLEIGH (Graphic only)

AUDI’S CONCEPT SLEIGH

Graphic by autoblog.com

The ICC is a top notch sleigh designed by the German manufacturer specifically for Santa Claus. The ICC acronym comes from Intergalactic Christmas Concept, and Audi believes that this is the perfect transport for a modern Santa Claus. Team members of Audi’s design team promises it to be the fastest, safest and most technological advanced of all sleighs. The ICC is inspired by a trimaran boat and is made of carbon fiber; it also features the e-tron Hyperdrive technology which allows you to travel around the world within minutes and without polluting. Another equipment that is part of this ultra-modern sleigh is the climate control system, which guarantees that Santa travels from the North Pole ice to other more torrid regions like Mexico without any major problems.

TECHNICAL EXPLANATION of SANTA’S SLEIGH & REINDEER
Graphic by The Comic King

FORD ECOBOOST CONCEPT OF SANTA’S SLEIGH

Graphic by Green.autoblog.com

Ford has figured that Santa’s road crew drops a knee-wobbling 214,670 tons of CO2 each year while delivering presents. The Ford design team started with the Evos concept morphed into an imaginary Santa-worthy sled. Under the hood rests a 123-horsepower, 125 pound-foot 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine that reduces CO2 by 191,843 tons.

JUST ANOTHER CONCEPT FROM AN AUTO ARTIST

Graphic by Bernie Walsh

Looks pretty cool, but the engine designed for coal burning….

BREAKDOWN OF SANTA’S SLEIGH

Graphic by Howstuffworks.com

So how does Santa do it? The most logical explanations is science and technology. Santa could have mastered the power of antimatter and that Santa and his elves would have to outfit his sleigh with a Stardust Antimatter Propulsion Engine. This device would allow Santa to deliver toys around the world in one night and be back to the North Pole.

LET’S GET TECHNICAL, REALLY TECHNICAL… THE TECHNO SLEIGH

So how does Santa do it? Here are some ways in which chemistry can help Santa meet his deadline:

Graphic by CHEMISTRYVIEWS.COM

While the mechanism of reindeer flight remains unclear, many theories have been put forward in the literature including magic acorns [2], stardust antimatter [3], and that heat and energy generated from air resistance powers flight [4]. However, Santa himself notes that reindeer only fly on Christmas Eve [5], leading us to consider some kind of astronomical event that occurs annually on that date. One fact is clear, however; a team of sleigh-pulling reindeer traveling at 3.5 million miles per hour will generate a lot of air resistance and will need to dissipate the resultant heat energy if they, and Santa, want to last the night.

VAUXHALL CONCEPT (European)

Graphic by perrys.co.uk

Vauxhall seems to have the engines worked out – although perhaps the turbocharged jet engines featured on the Jaguar C-X75 concept (and set to appear in very limited versions of a production version in future) would probably give the sleigh a bit more speed to get around billions of homes in just one night.

  • Satellite Navigation (A top-spec TomTom satellite navigation.)
  • Ford SYNC (If Santa were to forget a present, he could use the communication technology package to speak to the elves at the North Pole and put in any last minute orders.)
  • Start/Stop (Designed in cars to turn the engine off when the car is stationary in traffic lights. Santa’s route means plenty of starting and stopping and the technology could help him save a fortune in fuel costs.)
  • Flex7 (The system allows all of the seats to be manipulated in several different ways and each can be folded or moved. In a sleigh, this could be a valuable addition.)
  • Five-Star Safety (This means front, passenger and side airbags in the event of a collision, seatbelts with pretensioners and even Electronic Stability Control (ESC).)

 Merry Christmas, everyone!!!

 Sources: Google Search

Husband forced into emergency ‘pit stop’ at New Hampshire Motor Speedway

SAD UPDATE 10/12/2012:

Laconia Police Capt. Matt Canfield said the baby girl born at New Hampshire Motor Speedway last month when her mother went into labor before she could reach the hospital has died.  READ.

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Oh, I love stories that are unexpected and have a very happy ending! I came across this story on New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s website and thought I’d share.

Last Friday, Sept. 14th, a couple were on their way to Concord Hospital, N.H. with the wife in labor, when suddenly the husband was forced to make an emergency pit stop at NHMS.

The baby was not going to wait.

The mother, very quickly, gave birth to the couple’s fourth child, a baby girl, in their vehicle in the speedway’s parking lot. The panicked father then ran into the speedway’s main office and asked for help.

Who knew that stopping at a speedway would reward one with EMT’s right on hand?

The EMT services helped with what they could, and called for an ambulance to transport mother and baby. Upon checking later on, the hospital reported mother and baby were doing fine.

Speedway General Manager, Jerry Gappens awarded “Baby Katie” two tickets to our NASCAR races for the rest of her life.

“That little one is part of our family now. She and her parents are welcome here anytime,” said Gappens.

Congratulations to the family o their new addition!!

Brett Bodine takes Racingal.com for a ride on Daytona International Speedway

I had my initiation this afternoon at Daytona International Speedway and WOW!

I had the opportunity to take a media pace car ride on Daytona International Speedway this afternoon with none other than Brett Bodine.

Being able to go around Daytona International Speedway in a Ford Mustang Official Pace Car, hugging the backstretch wall, going a 130 mph was an incredible experience!! I was also treated to what other media members call a “Brett Bodine Special” -  Bodine drives around Daytona International Speedway with ONE hand on the steering wheel, going into the turns!

Going that speed at the 31 degrees of banking in the turns really makes it look as though you are driving up a hill and boy, those G forces…..! Bodine actually brought the Mustang to a crawl in the turn just so I could feel the 31 degree angle. Amazing!

I got out of the car and couldn’t stop smiling! I told Bodine “It might be 104 degrees out here, but I have goosebumps!!!” It was an overwhelming experience I will forever treasure!

Check out the ride:

Race fans to vote for driver cover rights on NASCAR The Game™: Inside Line video game

NASCAR fans will determine which NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver will grace the cover of the upcoming NASCAR The Game™: Inside Line video game in the “Drive for the Cover” campaign that launches today. This campaign lets NASCAR fans vote in a bracketed tournament that will be hosted entirely on NASCAR The Game’s Facebook page, and can be easily accessed at www.nascarthegame.com/vote.

Voting opens today as the virtual race for the cover begins on Facebook. Fans will vote for their favorite drivers up to one time per day on Facebook in the “Drive for the Cover” campaign. The campaign will be like no other, as the voting will be featured on each driver’s Facebook page as well as their teams’ and participating sponsors’ Facebook pages. The four-round, seven-week tournament, will target NASCAR fans and avid gamers to have a voice in the selection of a cover driver for the latest NASCAR video game title. Drivers who advance to the next round will be announced the Monday after voting closes:

MAY 24 – Voting Opens (32 drivers)

JUNE 10 – First Round Closes (16 drivers)

JUNE 17 – Second Round Closes (8 drivers)

JUNE 24 – Third Round Closes (4 drivers)

JUNE 30 – Fourth Round Closes (2 drivers)

JULY 15 – Final Round Closes (Champion)

Activision Publishing, Inc, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Activision Blizzard Inc. and leading independent game developer Eutechnyx announced last week that NASCAR® The Game™: Inside Line will be released this fall. Bringing the true NASCAR experience to consoles, the game will allow players to race with the top NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers, teams and cars, as well as feature all 23 officially licensed NSCS racetracks. NASCAR The Game: Inside Line is planned to launch Fall 2012 for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and the Wii™ system from Nintendo.

Visit www.nascarthegame.com/vote to vote in the “Drive for the Cover” campaign.

NASCAR The Game: Inside Line video trailer is available at NASCARTheGame.com/DriveFTC.