Header image

Have you set your DVR to record LAST MAN STANDING on February 14th to catch THREE TIME Spring up champion Tony Stewart? I have. Here’s a preview for your viewing pleasure:

I hope the whole episode is as funny as the preview!

Tomorrow is February! That means that Daytona is right around the corner! I, personally, can’t wait. The off season always seems extremely long to me (despite the fact that it is pretty much the shortest off season of any sport) and it drags on to me. I am ready to saddle up and watch. I am ready to be out at the track…taking in the sights, sounds and smells. I AM READY.

One thing I am going to admit to you is that as much as I love and look forward to the beginning of the season- there is also the struggle of having to pick out new driver/numbers/crew chiefs etc. There is always having to get use to all the new dynamics out there on top of the new nuances of things like the EFI and how that will effect the cars on the track and whatnot.  Plus did I mention the new numbers/new sponsors thing that ALWAYS throws me for a loop?

Stewart Haas Racing is not immune to changes- especially this season. Probably one of the most profound changes, everyone knows about. That is that Steve Addington will be Tony’s new crew chief this season. It’s not necessarily a change that I understand the reasoning behind but then again I am not a behind the scenes person so I am sure there is a reason for it. Right?

SHR was also able to finally fill the long empty (since May of 2011 if I am not mistaken) Director of Competition position with Greg Zipadelli. This does not surprise me in the least. I had a feeling back when Tony started Stewart-Haas Racing that Greg would end up over at SHR eventually in some capacity. It also seemed to me that there was increasing friction between Joey Logano and Greg Zipadelli towards the end of last season so it seemed like a natural move for everybody involved.

Stewart-Haas Racing also announced at the end of last season that Danica Patrick would be running the 10 car for 10 races (ha 10 for 10) in the cup series under the Stewart-Haas racing banner. But wait? Now it sounds like technically Danica will be running the 10 car for TBR (Tommy Baldwin Racing) and David Ruetimann will be running the rest of the season in the 10 car. Whot? I thought the 10 car was a SHR car? I am unclear as to what exactly this means…but the way I understand it (and this is just me…so it might NOT actually be happening this way): TBR is in a “partnership” with SHR in that SHR will provide the 10 car and the 10 crew chief (Greg Zipadelli) to TBR who will provide the 10 car with their owner points so that Danica is guarenteed to make it into the Daytona 500 without Tony having to give her his points and resting on his Championship provisional to get it.  When Danica isn’t in the 10 car, the car will be totally a TBR car and Ruitimann will have his own (a different) crew chief.  It kind of makes sense because if Tony were to give Danica his points and take the championship provisional, he wouldn’t be locked in the top 35 for the first five races.  That would be wasted on Danica who isn’t running a full schedule.  All I know is that the PR folks in charge of the Stewart-Haas Racing twitter account tells us that it’s a “win-win” for everyone. So there you have it. It’s “Winwin” just deal with it?!  (I am still kind of unclear if this means Danica is still a Stewart-Haas Racing driver).

Other changes including the adding of Quicken Loans and Aspen Dental to the list of sponsors signing up to sponsor Ryan Newman.  Add that to the Outback that was added in Phoenix (I was in the media center for the announcement).

So…what are Stewart-Haas’s chances of fielding two cars in the chase again next season? I don’t know.  The die-hard fan in me wants Tony to go out there and take names next season and win another championship.  GO TONY GO! I’M WITH SMOKE! You know the drill.  I always want Tony to win EVERY race- every single one.  I hope that Tony and team always go out there with that same attitude- the same one we saw at Homestead-Miami.  But we do have to take into consideration there are changes within the organization- the least of which means that Tony will have a new crew chief to build a rapport with.  Plus there is the third car for 10 races (or is there? I am still kind of confused…is it really considered a Stewart-Haas Racing team?).  So there is a 3 car dynamic for nearly a third of the races this coming season.  Can I just say though that I really REALLY want Tony to go out there and get that Daytona 500 win finally? Because I so do!

And just to add this picture from last month from Stewart-Haas Racing Twitter’s account that CRACKS me up:

This photo cracks me up! Photo Credit: Stewart-Haas Racing Twitter Account

Which reminds me- be sure to watch for Tony to be on The Last Man Standing with Tim Allen- it should air sometime around Speed Weeks (I think it comes on Valentines Day- but I will update when I know for sure).

I’m With Tony! Are you?  Let’s go 2012!

The winners in the BadGroove #Smokin2012 were chosen by random draw on Wednesday.

Aaron won the Tony Stewart/ SHR Sweatshirt.
Gina won the Smoke Brand T-shirt.
Mary Ann won the mystery “runner up” prize.

All prizes have been mailed (usps) as of yesterday! Congratulations winners!

It’s Depot Time!  You know you are missing your NASCAR fix hardcore when you get excited by a sponsor commercial.  Of course this one happens to star my* our* favorite 3-time Cup Champion TONY STEWART:

So you know I had to show it to you. I have long thought Office Depot needed some advertisements with Tony in them! Finally we have one. Hopefully more are in store for us (I don’t know why but “in store” just cracked me up- I think it has been a long day). If they need some ideas for some funny commercials I have a few ideas in my back pocket!

Of course now in my head I keep hearing “DEPOT TIME”  as in “Hammer Time” as in MC Hammer and envisioning my dad dancing around the house in these crazy (embarrassing) parachute pants he use to wear on occasion when I was a teenager. Oh the mortification is still fresh.

So how do you know you are missing your NASCAR fix? And what do you do to fix it because we still have several weeks and football just isn’t doing it for me.

___

* Have you ever noticed that Tony Stewart uses the terms “we” or “ours” when he means me or mine? I am so taking that up.

THREE TIME Sprint Cup Champion Tony Stewart (that whole three time thing never gets old) will be doing an autograph session as part of the NASCAR ACCELERATION weekend this Saturday January 21st, 2012 at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Tony’s session takes place on SATURDAY in the Ballroom at the Hall of Fame in Charlotte, NC starting at 3:15 local time (just a hint but I think you will want to get there at about 7:00am if you want to get a wristband). Tickets for the event are $10.00 and available for purchase here.

This actually looks like a really cool event- there will be many drivers there. For a complete listing of drivers and to buy tickets for the event (they are only $10.00) visit the NASCAR Acceleration Weekend page.

 

So, I have been waiting for something to arrive so that I could give it away here on Badgroove and have this mega contest with FOUR Tony Stewart items to give away but that ONE item is still not here and I am getting impatient. I just can’t wait any longer to give away some goodies to you (don’t worry- when the wayward item comes in I will still have the give away for it). (more…)

Happy 2012 everyone! I hope your holidays were wonderful! Mine were. I have to tell you the story of the Christmas Standee.

Picture if you will- Christmas Eve with family starting to arrive for dinner and the festivities to follow. My uncle comes in and asks me if I wouldn’t mind wrapping up a couple of his last minute presents that he didn’t have time to wrap. This is nothing new to me- I tend to do most of the wrapping in my family that isn’t a present FOR me. He gives them to me- one is for my dad and one for my brother. I proceed to grab some wrapping paper and go wrap them in a back room. Little did I know that the present wrapping request was a ruse to distract me away from the main part of the house. I finish up and return to the main part of the house and put the newly wrapped presents under the tree, project accomplished. I then go to the kitchen where most people have assembled. My dad, who is in the middle of cooking a turkey on the barbecue pit, asks me to go into the garage and get him a specific beer (that would be oatmeal stout for you keeping track at home- my dad likes the weird beers) to put in the fridge to cool down for later. I walk out into the garage, over to where the beverages are stored, bend down and start rummaging through the bag of specialty beers looking for the oatmeal one- not even noticing that the bag had been placed at the feet of a lifesize Tony Stewart Standee (or more accurately the Tony Stewart standee had been placed right behind the bag o’ beer- which was in it’s usual place). Yeah…I was that unobservant.

Yes I rummaged at the feet of this standee and didn't even notice it (shake my head). And NO the Santa Hat was NOT on it. I added that later.(photo credit: Ralph Marbach)

I then stood up and was about to walk back to the kitchen when I FINALLY caught sight of it out of the corner of my eye. Big laugh on my account.Tony then proceeded to stay in the garage the rest of the evening (mostly because I didn’t want to take the chance of one of the nephews deciding to try to climb him, use him as a surfboard, or whatever else young nephews might do to a lifesize (or darn near) Tony Stewart standee).  He later scared the crap out of my mom who forgot he was out there. That made ME laugh.

What rocks about my new (to me) Tony Stewart standee? Is that my uncle managed to recognize Tony Stewart enough to recognize that the standee in the shop where he buys welding supplies for work was my Tony Stewart.  My uncle is not into racing at all and has often said that he doesn’t understand how I can manage to watch cars drive in circles for hours on end.  That, to me is really COOL.  Plus he’s holding a Nextel cup so that is kind of cool too- (so yeah he’s like 6 years old…and a little faded…but I still think he rocks) considering that he managed to win the Sprint cup this year.

So that is the story of the great Christmas Standee.

So it’s probably pretty obvious that I am a big NASCAR fan- even to the most casual observer. I have a Tony Stewart vanity plate for goodness sake. My office at work has a life size Standee of Tony in the corner and several favorite pictures, tons of Tony’s cars (including the Tony Stewart Burger King Kid’s Meal Toys) and well obviously this BLOG is a huge indication right? It just screams A NASCAR FAN LIVES HERE!

So anyway a couple weeks ago I got a NASCAR.COM Store catalog in the mail- I usually do this time of year. This year the cover was Christmas themed- complete with stockings hung on a hearth with the names of several drivers. On the mantle of the hearth were Christmas card featuring the specific likeness of a couple of the most popular drivers. However don’t expect to find NASCAR Christmas cards in the catalog- they aren’t there nor are they in the online store:

No Christmas Cards found when doing a search at the NASCAR.COM online store (screen capture by Amy Marbach- That's me!)

I am not saying that they should only feature items that they have on the cover of the catalog. Just simply that I have LONG thought that NASCAR should consider some products such as Christmas cards, birthday cards (now I have found JR and Jimmie Johnson birthday cards at the store on occasion…but they are a rare find that is for certain), and most especially some officially licensed wrapping paper both for the holidays and not. I would stock up!

I even had a cute idea for a Tony Stewart themed Christmas card that could feature a picture of Tony with the championship confetti- kind of like this picture:

Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet, celebrates with the trophy in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford 400 and the 2011 Series Championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 20, 2011 in Homestead, Florida. Stewart wins his third NASCAR Championship. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images North America)

And on the inside it could say something like Wishing you a magical Christmas and A New Year Worthy of A Championship (or something like that).* Plus the idea could be easily modified for a birthday card (I would LOVE to get this as a birthday card…wouldn’t you?)  You could do something playful like that with a lot of the cards for other drivers too…by picking out something relevant from that year and coming up with a witty saying about it.  But mostly? I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to have NASCAR themed (or even more specific driver themed) wrapping paper (holiday paper would be awesome- but even just generic paper that could be used for birthdays or whatever.  I can’t be the only one thinking this…or maybe I am because I have a love of wrapping paper (and a love of wrapping gifts in general).

So yeah…I think NASCAR might be missing out on a money making product…what do you think?

___

*If you think that is a good idea for a card you should hear some of the ideas I have for Office Depot and Mobil 1 commercials featuring Tony Stewart…I tell you I am an untapped resource. I should have been in marketing or something.