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(Photo Source: Tony Stewart Facebook Page, Martinsville 2014 Album)

The stuff that has been rolling around in my brain like lugnuts in a pitstall during a green flag pit stop:

1. Wow- 10 “Loose Lugnuts” posts already? Not bad for just kind of a fun list. Like I said this is actually one of my favorite posts I write because it’s totally how I think- it’s just kind of a stream-of-conscious type thing. This seems to be a fairly post so I will keep it up!

2. Clint Bowyer’s number 15 Michael Waltrip Racing team was penalized 25 points yesterday for some sort of rules infraction that I saw on twitter was an “illegal trackbar” but for some reason the releases on the penalties the exact reason for the 15 team penalty wasn’t mentioned beyond a bunch of handbook infraction numbers that mean nothing to someone like me who doesn’t have a NASCAR rule book (would love one if anyone wants to pass one my way).   I have to say with Michael Waltrip Racing’s previous track record with these kind of issues I am not surprised. Part of me wonders if they don’t have trouble securing sponsorships because of previous cheating penalties (I am of course thinking of Boywer’s overly itchy arm a few years ago, and the jet fuel scandal a few years before that).  Of course MWR are appealing the penalty- I just hope that the appeal is heard soon (and upheld) because it really hoses up the chase when one of the chasers is penalized something like that- I mean with the points system the way it is (I almost called it the “new” points system but I guess we can pretty much state that it’s not really that new anymore ) 25 points is 25 positions on track (there were also monetary fines and  suspensions). Personally I think once the chase for the championship has started, anyone caught cheating should be disqualified from the chase. Yes they should be able to appeal it- and the appeal should be before the next race of the chase. Of course I think all chase cars should get an automatic post race trip to R&D as well to get a good going over to make sure that the cheating thing isn’t rampant.  That’s just my thoughts on the whole process. (more…)

September 11, 2015: during practice for the Federated Auto Parts 400 at the Richmond International Raceway . (Photo Credit: Tony Stewart Official Store Facebook/HHP/Andrew Coppley)

There isn’t as much rattling around my brain this week…but I still have a couple lug nuts pinging around the old pit stall that is my brain:

1. The Chase is on and SHR has two cars in championship contention (Kevin Harvick and Kurt Busch). Of course I want SHR to win but it’s hard for me to pick between Kevin Harvick and Kurt Busch. I have been waffling back and forth between the two for whatever reason all week. One moment I am all GO HARVICK and the next I am all GO KURT.  I am a Tony Stewart fan and since Tony Stewart is the STEWART in Stewart-Haas racing  a championship for either driver would be great overall since Tony isn’t in the Chase this year. Of course I still want Tony Stewart to win all the chase races. I always want that- whether he is in the chase contending for the cup or casually racing around the block on a skateboard (no I have never seen or heard of Tony racing around the block on a skateboard- I am using that as a weird analogy) on his off time.  I would love to see Tony go out there and win a race or three. There are still ten races before the end of the season. I say go and be that chase spoiler Tony! You can do it! So Go SHR in the chase but go Tony for the win! That said Busch or Harvick? Why? Help me get behind one of the two SHR Driver Nations.

2. While we are speaking about Stewart-Haas in the NASCAR Chase for the cup. Here is a great chase preview video put together by Mobil 1 The Grid on our Stewart-Haas drivers:

As Tony says at the very end of the video don’t forget to subscribe to the Mobil 1 The Grid Youtube channel for more exclusive motorsports videos for all the Mobil 1 sponsored teams including those revolving around SHR. The also have a pretty cool twitter feed you might want to follow. (more…)

Here we are with the (almost) weekly list of things rolling around my brain like loose lugnuts in a pit stall after a green flag pit stop:

Tony Stewart, co-owener of Stewart-Haas Racing, speaks with the media after announcing a multiyear deal partnership between Danica Patrick and Nature’s Bakery during a press conference on August 18, 2015 in Kannapolis, North Carolina. 
(Photo Credit: Zimbio/ Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images North America)


Winding Up For The Pitch

Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota, throws his hans device at Kevin Harvick (not pictured), driver of the #4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet, after an on-track incident  at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images North America)

I couldn’t resist the title. After the Denny/Harvick incident I actually tweeted that.  But I am getting ahead of myself. Bristol is one of my favorite tracks to watch on television; it and Martinsville. I guess I am a just a short track racing girl at heart.  Jeff Burton was again piloting the #14 Bass Pro Chevy for our driver Tony Stewart.  He qualified the #14 25 for the race- I wasn’t able to catch ANY of practice or qualifying so I couldn’t gauge how the car was running and had no idea what to expect from our team 14.

I was pleased to see that once the green flag flew Jeff Burton was able to move up through the field, slowly and steadily picking off positions one at a time fairly methodically and patiently- a feat that is not easy at a track that known to ignite the tempers of even the most mild mannered of drivers. Crew Chief Chad Johnston made an interesting call during a caution at lap 198 and that put the 14 car up in the top four of the race! That right there was a BEAUTIFUL thing to see. (more…)

(This is part 2 of our two part  annual Sonoma “Race-cation” post! Check out Part 1: Friday & Saturday here— Amy)

Sunday would prove to be one of our busiest and most interesting race days that we have experienced to date. Thanks to NASCAR we had earned a VIP race experience and what an experience it was.

Sonoma Raceway

Bright and early Sunday morning picture taken from parking lot 1 as I waited for the parking shuttle as tweeted June 22nd, 2014 (Photo Credit: Amy K. Marbach)

Our race day started as another bright and even earlier day.  We wanted to be absolutely certain we were at Sonoma Raceway in plenty of time so we left quite early knowing that highway 37 towards Sonoma is two lane for much of it (one in each direction) and can back up quite quickly and we wanting to leave nothing to chance. Because we left so early we encountered virtually no traffic except the usual getting into the raceway traffic so by the time we were parked and waiting for the shuttle to the paddock/media center we realized we were there well before we needed to be. So what do an early Misty and Amy do at a race track early? They take a quick walk down the length of the garage and then out to the area behind the pit stalls before they are too crowded.

Early Sunday Morning Pit Road

Pit road at Sonoma Raceway early Sunday morning on June 22nd, 2014 (Photo Credit: Amy K. Marbach)


The 14 Car on Pit Road

Tony Stewart’s #14 Bass Pro/Mobil 1 Chevy sits in the pits at Charlotte Motor Speedway. (Photo Credit: The Tony Stewart Official Store Facebook Page/ Andrew Coppley/CIA Stock Photo Copyright, CIA Stock Photography, Inc)

Over my life, my racing fandom has wavered between NASCAR, IRL and even NHRA for awhile before I settled back on NASCAR in the late 90s. I know I have mentioned this here before (usually right around this time of year) but I started off as a mostly IRL fan  (technically it was before the inception of what is now called IRL- back then it was called CART and if anyone mentions that I am showing my age- I will sock you in the eye) likely because that was the premier racing series that the track closest to my home ran at the that time.  I remember watching many an Indy500 “bubble day” with bated breath wondering who was going to make the field and who was going to go home sad. I knew the words to “Back Home Again In Indiana” before my own state song. I have no trouble sitting down and watching an IRL race, and did so with even more glee than usual on Sunday – all because Kurt Busch was running the double. As I listened to the Indy500 pre race show as I flitted about the house before settling into watch some racing, I said after the pre-race interview with Kurt “If he doesn’t crash the Indy car I have no doubt he will do it.” Little did I know what exactly he would do that could in the Indy500 side of the double.  I mean- technically it was his first time in a IRL race. And racing is different than testing, and qualifying and all that.  When Kurt tied Tony’s best Indy double finish…I was IMPRESSED!  I was so disappointed for him when he suffered an engine failure in Charlotte.  I HOPE that doesn’t dissuade him from attempting this again! I love the double and would actually LOVE to see more drivers attempt it- it adds something to the Indy 500 to me as well as the Coca-Cola 600.

The pit crew of the #14 Bass Pro/Mobil 1 Chevy services the car. (Photo Credit: Tony Stewart FaceBook page)

That said- let’s talk Coca-Cola 600.  It’s the longest race of the NASCAR season- I know that there has been talk that it’s too long- but I think there needs to be at least one 600 mile race in the season.  In a time when the trend is to want to shorten races in general- I think it’s important to have a long race to showcase the endurance of the drivers, team and equipment.  I think of it as the endurance race of NASCAR. (more…)

Working on the Code 3 Associates #14

The crew works on the #14 Code 3 Associates/BassPro/Mobil 1 chevy of Tony Stewart during the race on Sunday 2014 (Photo Credit: Tony Stewart Official Store Facebook Page)

It seems that whenever I pick Tony Stewart as my lead in my Fantasy League- he has a terrible day. So I can be assuring you all that I will not be picking him as my lead driver anymore. Sigh. I was so optimistic that Tony would have a good run at Martinsville.  He was running the Code 3 Associates paint scheme and the last time he ran that- he won the race (Pocono). Plus he qualified 7th! Whoo! That was awesome. (more…)

Mark Martin pilots Tony Stewart's 14 car at Kansas

Mark Martin, driver of the #14 Bass Pro Shops / Tracker Boats Chevrolet, pulls into the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 13th Annual Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway on October 5, 2013. (Photo Credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images North America)