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Race 8: Kansas (Or A Lot Of Words About An Eh Race)

Posted by Amy in General | NASCAR

First thing I wanted to share about the Kansas race is this picture of Richard Petty (and driver Aric Almirola) being honored by STP at Kansas Speedway since I wrote about the event here:

STP donates $43,000 to Victory Junction to celebrate their 40th Anniversary with “The King” at Kansas Speedway on Friday, April 20. STP Senior Brand Manager, Jamie Kistner (right), presents the $43,000 check to Richard Petty (center), Aric Almirola, driver of the No. 43 STP Ford Fusion (second from right), and Victory Junction Camper Ambassadors (Photo Credit: CIA Stock Photo)

Since Sunday afternoon, I have been trying to figure out what to write about for the Kansas race.  Tony’s run was mediocre. He qualified badly and the team ended up spending most of the race attempting to fix the set up for the car.  I don’t know if they just weren’t expecting it to be that cold on Sunday or what, but they had an obvious miss on the set-up and made chassis adjustments nearly every pit stop.They never stopped working and did awesome on the pit stops.

Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series STP 400 at Kansas Speedway. (Photo Credit: Tyler Barrick/Getty Images North America)

Luckily they did seem to make it slightly better towards the end of the race- but it wasn’t quite enough (or maybe not quite soon enough). Tony finished and is now 8th in points. Denny Hamlin was the race winner.

Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet, looks on prior to the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series STP 400 at Kansas Speedway on April 22, 2012 in Kansas City, Kansas. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images North America)

(Must have been cold in Kansas- I saw more drivers wearing jackets over their firesuits than I ever have).

Notes About Kansas-

  1. I didn’t like the race at Kansas- too many engine failures, not enough side-by-side racing action. Races with too many engine failures make me sad. I like it when the race is more about the driver than the equipment failing.
  2. I was watching DirecTV’s Tony Stewart Hot Pass channel and they seemed to be having their difficulties.  At least twice that I saw they listed Tony’s crew chief as Darian Grubb instead of Steve Addington (come on we are 8 races into the season now). Plus usually they have their own separate ticker that shows where the driver you are watching (in my case Tony) is in the race (what position) That NEVER even came up at all. So basically I had to squint to see the FOX ticker in the corner of the screen. Basically I could see and hear the national broadcast on FOX, and Tony’s hot pass picture (which most of the time was run from the camera on the roof of the car) and every once is blue moon a box could come up stating who Tony’s Crew Chief was (and that was wrong at least twice).  There was never any other information on the screen. They usually flash how the other hot pass drivers are doing or sometimes they will put up who has the fastest lap times, that kind of stuff.  They only rarely changed Tony’s camera angle from the one off the top of his car.  It was lackluster- I should have just watched the National broadcast.
  3. I didn’t watch too much of the pre-race show this week. What little I DID watch had one of the broadcasters stating that both Clint Bowyer AND Carl Edwards were from Kansas (Carl Edwards is actually from Missouri). So that is why I switched over to Hot Pass as soon as I could.
  4. Tony has said that the major difference between Steve Addington and Darian Grubb was that Steve is harder to hear on the radio. Earlier this season I watched a race on Hot Pass (must have been Bristol or Martinsville maybe?) and I didn’t have any trouble hearing him or understanding him. But this week at Kansas? I can totally hear (or not) what Tony was talking about. I think Steve is a “low” talker.
  5. I was going to keep this link for my (almost) weekly reading list- but I tend to present that material with none of my own opinions interjected and I just couldn’t resist the temptation to talk about Jeff Gluck’s latest piece for SBNation called The Diary Of A TV-Watching NASCAR Writer. I totally could have written this myself- because it’s nearly exactly how I feel…and when you couple these issues about the broadcast with a race of mediocre excitement factor (hey I know it’s going to happen occasionally) it really makes it a struggle to watch sometimes (Of course I will still watch it because…what if something exciting happens).
  6. Last time Denny Hamlin won a race, Tony Stewart won the next one. I can only hope that happens again this weekend at Richmond!
  7. Every single time I see a picture of Tony and Steve Addington standing next to each other it humors me. I don’t know WHY it does…I think it has something to do with the fact that Steve Addington is so tall:

Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet, talks with crew chief Steve Addington in the garage during practice for the NASACAR Sprint Cup Series 400 at Kansas Speedway. (Photo Credit: John Harrelson/Getty Images North America)

Next weekend: Richmond on Saturday Night!

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