Ok, so I go to the Office Depot Racing website a lot. First off I like to switch my desktop wallpaper a lot because I get bored easy and they have a great variety of Tony Stewart and Office Depot Racing wallpapers. So I went to grab a new one this morning to brighten my Wednesday and I found that they had updated the look of their site….not just a little but a whole lot. I think the update looks amazing and has a great feel to it!
I don’t know about you all but I LOVE the new look to the website. It still has all your favorite information (including the wall papers- those rock) but it’s in a much more streamlined format.
I would like to point out that on this new website is an awesome video about Tony called No Limit. You HAVE to check it out. On the main page it cycles through the main “stories” and it is one of them! It’s a definite must see for any Tony Stewart fan.
There is also a cool little weekly poll. This week’s question is If you could be on Tony’s pit crew, what job would you like? They give you the choices of: Tire Changer, Spotter, Transport Driver, Tire Carrier, Sign Board/Clean Grill, and Windshield. Now this is something I have actually contemplated. I chose SPOTTER. I think being a Spotter would be fun yet important. My only issue is the whole deathly afraid of heights thing. Of course being a TRANSPORT DRIVER would be fun too- just think of how much of the country you get to see! But then again- you probably have to keep to a schedule and stopping at the side of the road to take pictures because something catches your eye (as I often do) would probably be frowned upon. I will tell you what job I would NOT want to do…that is the guy that gets down and Cleans The Grill. I think it was the Brickyard- that guy reached down and grabbed a piece of paper off the grill of Tony’s car right before he left and I don’t know if it was the camera angle or what but it look like he nearly got hit as Tony was peeling out. Definitely not for the faint of heart…or klutzy.
But back to my original point…go check out the new Office Depot Racing website!!! You won’t be disappointed.
As of today, you have just under one month left to purchase tickets for that sweet 2010 Chevy Camaro that the Tony Stewart Foundation is raffling off. The drawing takes place on AUGUST 30th people! I have babbled on and on about this car because it is seriously sweet– even better than just your average 2010 Camaro because it has been enhanced by Unique Autosports:
Strut wheels wear 22 inch Pirelli tires
K&N state of the art filter and intake system will boost power to 4oo bhp
Borla Exhaust so your neighbors can hear when you are taking her out for a spin (ok the release says gives the car a “throaty roar”).
Spies Hecker paint on a Glam Effect body kit by Classic Design Concepts
Roadwire leather interior
Smoked tail lamps
JL Audio equipment
What? You want some pictures? Sure! Here are some pictures of the 2010 Camaro display at the Brickyard a couple weeks ago:
Tony and the Camaro being raffled off. (photo credit: The Tony Stewart Foundation)
Rear view of the 2010 Camaro being raffled off. (Photo provided by: The Tony Stewart Foundation)
Tony and Riki Rachtman at the Chevy Tent at the Brickyard...(Photo Credit: The Tony Stewart Foundation)
Ok are you drooling yet? You should be! But if you aren’t drooling and grabbing for your wallet yet maybe this will entice you. The winner of the Camaro also gets:
all-expense paid trip to Stewart-Haas Racing in Kannapolis, NC
personal VIP Meet & Greet with Tony Stewart, who will hand over the keys to your new car
delivery of Camaro to your home.
Personally- I think that the trip to Kannapolis alone (regardless of the car) is worth the price of the raffle ticket add to that a SHWEET car and a personal VIP Meet & Greet with Tony Stewart.
Still have reservations? Well then let’s talk about the good YOU will be helping the TONY STEWART FOUNDATION do. The Tony Stewart Foundation grant program serves children, animals and injured drivers. Remember that since it’s inception in 2004, the Tony Stewart foundation has awarded $4.5 million dollars to charitable organizations including: Victory Junction Gang Camp, Indiana Canine Assistance Network, Camp Riley/Riley’s hospital for children, various camps serving special needs children, various animal rescue groups (including The Friends Of Ferdinand), the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation, USCA Benevolent fund and well the list can go on and on.
Well then where do I sign up you ask? You can purchase your raffle ticket at SmokesCamaro.com for $50 for one, $75 for two or $100 for three. What’s better? They are only going to sell at MOST 10,000 tickets BUT as of this writing less than half the tickets have been sold (there are currently 6413 tickets available for purchase). And remember there are 14 other runner up prizes if you do NOT get chosen as the winner of the camaro that are valued anywhere from $50.00 to $225.00 and include a variety of Tony Stewart autographed memorabilia.
LESS THAN ONE MONTH PEOPLE….let’s sell some tickets!
Ok so I have made it no secret that there is something I just don’t like about races at Pocono. I have NEVER actually been to the track so it’s all based on TV coverage but I have always called Pocono the “evil little triangle” but it should be renamed the “evil big triangle”. Either way…I don’t like to watch Pocono and I think it is because I don’t like things that aren’t symmetrical and Pocono is definitely not symmetrical with it’s three turns and they are all different banking. Yes I know that’s an odd thing to say – but what can I say- they say that humans are generally drawn to symmetry so…I am just human I guess.
So the best news from Friday? Tony go the pole at Pocono! I was at work during qualifying so I didn’t get to watch it…and honestly? I hadn’t even really paid attention to when qualifying was. I went to NASCAR.COM to see if qualifying was over and it wasn’t- but Tony had the pole! WhooHoo! I might have even said that out loud. Ok I did…and I clapped. But I was alone upstairs in my office and I don’t think anyone heard…but so what if they did.
LONG POND, PA - JULY 30: Tony Stewart, driver of the Office Depot/Old Spice Chevrolet, poses after qualifying on the pole for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway on July 30, 2010 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR)
I have to share this picture of the race because I think it’s an awesome picture of Tony coming over the stripe first and shows just how close Jeff Gordon was to Tony. Jeff proceeded to push Tony to the lead and the two of them took off like gang busters for the first lap or so.
LONG POND, PA - AUGUST 01: Tony Stewart, driver of the Office Depot/Old Spice Chevrolet, and Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the Target Chevrolet, lead the field to the green flag to start the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway on August 1, 2010 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images)
After the first couple of laps Tony faded back a bit as he struggled with the handling of his car.
LONG POND, PA - JULY 30: Tony Stewart (L), driver of the Office Depot/Old Spice Chevrolet, talks with crew chief Darian Grubb in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway on July 30, 2010 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)
He then proceeded to spend most of the first half of the race in 7th. He would go into the pits in 7th and come out in 7th- which meant that the Office Depot pit crew was definitely on the ball. But the race at this point was one really long green flag run (there was a competition caution at lap 15 because of the rain delay in the morning) and honestly except during pit stops (which fascinate me)- it was a little boring to watch on the TV. I did entertain myself during the race by texting Misty and doing my photography assignment- but I admit it was a little boring…and starting to seem excessively long. After about the halfway point the track started to change because of the sun coming out…so whole most other cars were suddenly loose- Tony’s car seemed to come into itself and Tony worked his way up to sixth…then fifth.
LONG POND, PA - AUGUST 01: Tony Stewart, driver of the Office Depot/Old Spice Chevrolet, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway on August 1, 2010 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Then there was a horrendous crash that had both Kurt Busch and Elliott Sadler in to the infield wall hard. Kurt lucked out in that his car slammed into SAFER barrier- but Elliott’s car missed the barrier and slammed hard into a wall backed by a solid dirt embankment. It was a hard hit by both drivers- unfortunately Elliott’s crash was not caught by any of the camera angles that ESPN had….except for one where you can just see a wee little bit of the hit into the embankment. It was hard. Then there was the aftermath where all you could see was Elliott’s car in multiple pieces- the engine had become completely dislodged from the chassis. Then Elliot is hanging out of the car half in and half out looking pained….at which time he gets out and lays down next to the car right on the track. Disturbing? Hell yes. But at least he was awake.
Sadler’s car on the wrecker after the wreck:
LONG POND, PA - AUGUST 01: The wrecked Air Force Ford, driven by Elliott Sadler, gets towed through the garage area after he hit the wall in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway on August 1, 2010 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Sadler’s engine on a separate wrecker:
LONG POND, PA - AUGUST 01: The engine of the Air Force Ford, driven by Elliott Sadler, gets towed through the garage area after he hit the wall in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway on August 1, 2010 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Then comes a rather lengthy red flag for clean up and all the cars are stopped on the track. I was listening to Tony’s scanner on NASCAR.COM but he was pretty quiet during the red flag (something they even mentioned during the national broadcast- so I wasn’t the only one who noticed it!).* They get the clean up done and the cars are rolling and then…it starts to rain. So they throw the red again and bring the cars down pit road and park them there. Tony was more animated on the radio while parked on pit road…and I will talk about that in the notes.
They get the track dried and at this point I – to me it feels like the longest race ever in the history of man. I am sure it’s not but it certainly felt that way to me.
Darian called Tony in for a 4 tire stop. I was freaked out because there were a WHOLE SLEW of cars that came out in front of him in the pits- but turns out? Those cars where 2 tire or no tire stops (NO tires? Are you nuts?) Darian’s call was for “four tires and to haul ass!” Obviously I liked it so much I made it the subtitle of this entry. Tony did end up coming out of the pits as the first car on 4 tires so between having the first pit stall and having the Office Depot pit crew on their toes they did good.
Then the racing got really good! Tony was passing people two at a time for awhile there…he restarted 11th I think (am doing this without notes so pardon my memory) and was up to like fifth in what seemed like three or four laps. Meanwhile? Greg Biffle was pulling away! Tony then got caught up fighting Sam Hornish and Carl Edwards for position…by 10 laps to go Tony was up to 2nd and trying to reel in The Biff…and it wasn’t for a lack of effort-as Tony had put some distance between him and third- but there was just no catching the Biff. With his hard fought second place finish, Tony gained a position in the points standings and is now EIGHTH in the standings.
Notes from Pocono:
On Saturday I accidentally watched the Camping World Truck race at Pocono. Apparently it was the first time the trucks had run there and honestly? It was a GREAT race. Of course it was only 50 laps. So was the ARCA race. It wasn’t as good as the truck race but it was still pretty good. How do you accidentally watch the race? Well it was on and I was in front of a TV…but I wasn’t purposely tuned in. Congrats to Elliott Sadler for winning it for Kevin Harvick Inc.! His son Wyatt? A-freaking-dorable!
It’s my opinion that this race is entirely too long. When I am more entertained by doing things like texting and submitting my assignments for my photography class that I am taking in the middle of the race? It’s TOO LONG! And I thought this BEFORE the red flag for the accident/rain. Me thinks that either: Pocono’s race needs to be shorter or they don’t need a second race. Just my thoughts there.
*Ok- I am going to get a little crude here so if you are easily offended by crude-ish talk- avert your eyes or skip this bullet and go down to the the next one. So during the first part of the red flag- right after they asked Darian why Tony seemed so quiet in the car during the red flag (to which Darian replied- “he’s probably taking a nap- resting up” for the rest of the race) it was time to fire the engines and start rolling. Darian called Tony on the radio and asked him if he was awake. Tony replied that he was and that we was “just sweating my nuts off” in the car. AFTER THE RACE, I was relaying this to my father because I found it chuckle worthy to which my dad said to me: “Well you KNOW what that means don’t you?” wait for it…”It means it was DAMN hot in the car!” Um I think I might have figured this out. I am just saying…
Another Tony radio gem was when they were waiting for SPRINKLES on the track to cease and they were sitting on pit road and he asked Darian if they would be allowed to get out of the car for five minutes because the had been in the car for over 4 hours at this point and “Some of us aren’t 21 years old anymore and might need to take a leak.” And then there was the time also while on pit road he became all boss-like and got on his radio and stated that someone needed to tell one of the 39 crew members that he should NOT be on pit road without a hat on. They all laughed that up pretty good too.
Apparently long race equals long post…
Also from earlier in the weekend? Stewart-Haas teammate Ryan Newman helped Pocono flip the switch on the new solar farm next to the track that will power both the track and nearby homes- helping erase the carbon footprint of the race. Here is the video from that:
I just got back yesterday afternoon and I haven’t had time to sit down and write about Indy. I came home to freezing weather (ok after being in 110 degree weather all weekend my usual of 65 is FREEZING) a ton of laundry and a very needy beagle who was attached to my by the hip yesterday after I got home. Then of course I come to work and am pretty much slammed work wise. So still no brickyard 400 post…but I have two things for you to chew on until I get that done (hopefully in time to post tomorrow morning).
First is this video from NASCAR.com featuring Jeff “Gooch” Patterson (gas man) and Rick Pigeon (catch can man) for the #14 Office Depot Chevy driven by Mr. Tony Stewart. It’s an interesting little piece about their jobs on the team.
Attention Stewart-Haas Racing fans in Indiana or attending the Brickyard 400 next week- there are some exciting autograph appearances heading your way next week in conjunction with the race. Both Stewart-Haas Racing drivers will be doing separate autograph appearances at Office Depot locationss in Indiana on different days:
Driver Ryan Newman will be signing autographs on Wednesday July 21st at the Office Depot located in Noblesville, Indiana (located at: 16650 Mercantile Boulevard /Stoney Creek Commons, Noblesville, Indiana 46060). 375 wristbands will be distributed at the location starting at 8:30 am local time. You must have a wristband to get an autograph. Ryan will begin signing autographs at approximately 4:00pm local time. Fans with wristbands MUST be in line before 5:oo pm.
Driver Tony Stewart will be signing autographs on Thursday July 22nd at the Office Depot located in Carmel, Indiana (12417 North Meridian Street (Hamilton Crossing) in Carmel, Indiana). 350 wristbands will be distributed at the location starting at 8:00 am local time. You must have a wristband to get an autograph. Tony will begin signing autographs at approximately 3:00 pm. Fans with wristbands MUST be in line before 3:30 pm.
With both appearances, there is one autograph per wristband and one wristband per person limit.
If you can attend I highly reccomend that you do- it’s always a blast!
UPDATED: We have also found out that Tony Stewart will be appearing at the Team Chevy booth at the Brickyard Friday July 23rd at 12:30 local time. Driver appearances at the Team Chevy booth start at 11:00. Visit the Team Chevy booth at the Indianapolis Motorspeedway for more information.
Last week I mentioned the Tony Stewart backpack donation/ autograph signing at an Office Depot in Chicago but I forgot to mention that in conjunction with the Back-To-School campaign Tony will be driving an alternate Office Depot Racing paint scheme with a BACK-TO-SCHOOL theme. I like this year’s back-to-school car even better than the one Tony raced last season! Take a look:
Side view of the Back-To-School themed Office Depot Chevy. Photo Credit: Edelman
Rear "TV Panel" view (aka the view we hope all the of the competiton sees next weekend) of the Back-To-School themed Office Depot Chevy. Photo Credit: Edelman
Now that is one smart looking car (pun totally and willfully intended). Here is another one of those time lapse car wrapping videos…you know that I love them and share them when I get them:
I think wrapping the cars would be a fun yet frustrating job…fun because well it just looks fun. frustrating because it would be crazy to try to get it all to line up correctly! Patient men (and women) have this job I imagine!
Also just to remind anyone who is in the Chicago area tomorrow July 8th, 2010 might want to stop by the Office Depot located at 2928 North Ashland Avenue Chicago, IL 60657. Wristbands for the Tony Stewart autograph session will be distributed starting at 7:00 am local time and the actual autograph session will start at 4:45 pm (you must be in the autograph line with your wristband by 5:15).
Well first off, I hope all of you out there had a great 4th of July holiday! I had a friend in town (MISTY! YEY!) over the long weekend and believe me did we ever make the most out of the couple of days we had! Believe it or not? Our plans had NO FIREWORKS in it at all. Speaking of fireworks…the July race in Daytona will ALWAYS be the Firecracker 400 to me. Coke Zero- you know I love you…at least you should since I swill enough of it to float a pontoon boat.
Of course we worked all of our fun around watching the race. I admit I was a wee bit worried that it would rain all night in Daytona and our Sunday plans would have been ruined- but luckily they were able to get the race underway with just a 90 minute delay for a thunderstorm that passed through.
There I go getting ahead of myself though- so while I was out and about something happened during practice and Tony ended up wrecking in the primary car and resorting to a back up car. One of the things that irritates me the most about Daytona is the fact that one lap my driver can be running 5th and the next 35th…all depending on how the draft was working out. Tony was working his car towards the front of the race and even led the race twice (yey for bonus points for leading a lap) only to be caught up in “The BIG ONE” on lap 148 pf the race. This “Big One” was aptly named because 19 cars were involved in the accident. It was huge. Although if you were watching the TNT race coverage you would think that the only car that was on fire was Mark Martins. Nope…as Misty said…I guess Tony’s Burger King sponsored car took “flame broiled” a bit too literal:
Tony Stewart bursts into flames after a late race crash in turn three during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida on July 3, 2010. UPI Photo/Malcolm Hope Photo via Newscom
That picture caption up there is NOT something I wrote …I just had to point that out- they are written by the source of the photos…because I would have never worded it “Tony Stewart bursts into flames” because that makes it sound like the man spontaneously combusted or something….I just had to clarify that. Anyway, those flames look like they are right on my name. My name was probably all melted and charred.
After seeing a photo like that you might be surprised to know that Tony’s pit crew did an awesome job fixing up the 14 Burger King chevy and were actually able to get him back on the track. You might be surprised to find this out because TNT never really mentioned it at all.
Tony Stewart, driver of the Burger King Chevrolet, drives after being involved in a crash during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 3, 2010 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)
“Really proud of everyone on this race team,” said Stewart, who started ninth after qualifying was rained out on Friday and the field was set by car owner points. “Everyone had a role and they worked quickly and efficiently to get me back out to make enough laps to where we ended up picking up a lot of positions. Little things like that make a big difference.”
I think Tony and the whole #14 crew should be really proud of getting back onto the track and not giving up and just loading up the hauler and heading back up to Charlotte. Tony was able to gain back several positions (7!) and really didn’t too much of a hit in the points. Tony finished the race 25th and is currently 9th in points. Race winner was Kevin Harvick. Notes About Daytona:
TNT’s Wide Open Coverage? Kind of stinks when you have a small TV. I am just saying. I also find it kind of stressful because I don’t feel I have a moment’s break.
Speaking of TNT- you know what was kind of sucktastic about the broadcast? That they never really talked about Tony after “the big one” and honestly they didn’t really talk too much about him before it. But the only thing I heard about Tony was “Tony Stewart (long pause that made Misty look over at me with a worried look) released from the infield care center.” Yep that is all they said. It would have been nice to grab a look at the team repairing the car in the garage or maybe the car as it rolled back out onto the track or something…anything.
I forgot how FUN it is to watch a race with Misty. She is competitive and it definitely spills over into her NASCAR loving.
My favorite moment from the race was watching the Lowe’s pit crew guys drag Mark Martin from his burning car…it was so brave and yes I know they are teammates but I bet they wouldn’t have done it not matter who it was. Good thing Mark Martin is on the smallish side and was probably a bit easier to help get out of the car!
Did anyone else catch the Burger King commercial about Tony actually working at a Burger King? I have looked ALL OVER for more information on this and haven’t found any. Let me know if you come across any information…I would love to write about this.
I also wanted to pass along this article from Raygan Swan at NASCAR.com about a woman who got her minivan skinned by Newman sponsor TORNADOS as well as got to visit him in Daytona…it’s a great read.
This Saturday night Tony Stewart will be piloting himself and the #14 Chevy Impala around Daytona International Speedway. While technically he will be in the car alone- he won’t really be alone he will be carrying over 48,000 of his fans with him on every lap…INCLUDING ME!!! The entire Burger King hood logo is jammed with fans actual signatures. How totally COOL is that?
You can't tell by the picture but the signatures of more than 48,000 fans grace the Burger King logo of the 14 car Tony will run this weekend at Daytona. (Photo Credit: Edelman)
I would think that Tony has got to feel pretty darn good knowing that more than 48,000 people wanted to ride with him and support him in Daytona. Originally the promotion was to have the fans names only on the part of the logo that said BURGER KING- but that filled up within 48 hours so Burger King actually extended the promotion to the rest of the logo.
They have been calling the fan signatures “fandorsements” which I LOVE because how true is that. In my experience in not only being a NASCAR fan but being around fellow NASCAR fans at races and other events, fans usually jump all in to support (endorse) their favorite driver- so “fandorsement” is the perfect word for the signatures on Tony’s car this weekend. The website is a big Tony Stewart “fandorsement” in itself but actually having the opportunity to have not just my name but actual signature squished into the logo is too cool for words in my opinion.
What is even cooler than that? ONE lucky ebay bidder can win the hood with Tony’s signature on it as well as the 48,ooo fans. One of the hoods is on auction right now. You can get to the auction by visiting the BK Race & Win website and you will see the auction link with the latest bid (the auction is going now and ends July 8th at a little after noon pacific time- so get your bids in now). The BK Race & Win website also sports a really cool video with them wrapping the car and a sneak peek behind the scenes at Stewart-Haas racing. Oh and if you click on EXPLORE you can look over the logo at the fandorsements.
And now I must beg/grovel/whatever….if you happen to win the hood auction…or even better if you happen to get close enough to the car to get a picture of the signatures…my name is in the left arm of the U right on the outer edge not quite half way down. There is a tiny smiley face next to my last name…I would love you forever and ever and ever if you would take me a picture of my name and email it to me.
And of course as always: go TONY go! I will be with you in spirit at the race…and on your hood.