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Tony Stewart in the garage at Daytona on February 20, 2014 (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images North America)

This is one I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to see!  Tony Stewart will be appearing with his racing idol/mentor AJ Foyt at the Budweiser ROLL-BAR at Phoenix Raceway on Saturday March 1st, 2014 at 11:00 am.

While you do have to pay to get into the ROLL-BAR- it’s worth it in this case. You also get a prerace pit pass for the day (Or weekend if you choose a whole weekend pass), food and drink vouchers, preferred parking, entertainment, driver appearances such as this one and other fun stuff. For more information or to purchase a ROLL-BAR pass check out the Budweiser ROLL-BAR page.

PS. If any of my readers happen to go to this event- I would love some pictures for BadGroove if you will share :-)

Okay Smoke fans- this is what I have dug up for you appearance wise this week:

1.On Thursday March 21st, 2013 (yes this is TOMORROW people) Tony Stewart will be appearing at the Bass Pro Shop located in Rancho Cucamongua in an autograph session with driver Jamie McMurray.  This was taken right from the Bass Pro Rancho Cucamonga location facebook page: Starting at 9am on 3/21 we will pass out 350-400 wrist bands and affix them to each wrist. We have heard people may want to camp in line overnight or plan to arrive very early, so the line may be very long. After we have affixed the wrist band, people can then line up inside the store or can leave and return. The bands are not numbered and having a wrist band does not hold a place in line or guarantee an autograph. Jaime and Tony will be together at the same table from 6pm-8pm and we’re hoping all goes well and each wrist band gets an autograph. The line will start at our first set of double doors on the left as you face the store. Each will sign one item only.

2. On Friday morning on March 22nd, 2013 at approximately 10:45 Tony Stewart will be inducted into the Auto Club Walk of Fame…I don’t think there will be anything more than a little appearance by the man- so I doubt there will be any chances for autographs or anything (but who knows)- but you might catch a glimpse of your favorite driver. Look for the roped off section at the Walk of Fame at the speedway.

3. For NORTHERN CALIFORNIA Smoke fans- Tony will be appearing/racing a winged sprint car at Stockton 99 Speedway on Friday night.  Tickets are on sale now at the World of Outlaws Website: http://www.woosprint.com/. For more information on tickets and times, please contact the Speedway Office at (209)466-9999 or visit their Website at www.stockton99.com.

Don’t think that Northern Cali appearance doesn’t stick in my craw- since you know that is where I am located! I have ALWAYS wanted to see Tony race dirt in person and that speedway is only a couple hours from my house but because it’s Auto Club- I will be down in Southern Cali and I have not perfected transporting myself by flue powder or bending the space/time continuum I will miss it since it’s about 6 hours by car EACH WAY from Fontana.  Sigh. If only I had a jet pack or a private plane or helicopter something (not a helicopter because I am pretty sure that would KILL ME DEAD since flying in a plane is bad enough)- that would be a GREAT time (could you imagine THAT story on the ole blog? Especially the part about flying.) When the man (Tony Stewart) sleeps I have no idea.

I have probably been watching a little too much Criminal Minds because I automatically think of that show when I hear Quantico.  But this has NOTHING to do with television. As my readers know though- if it has to do with a Tony Stewart appearance I will write about it. This appearance might be private however I love that it supports our military!

Tony Stewart will be meeting with Wounded Warriors and then hold a private meet and greet for service members at Barnett Field as part of Quantico’s Third Annual ServMart Customer Appreciation Day. Marine Corps Base Quantico’s mission is to optimize readiness by providing operation and training support, infrastructure and community services.

“It is an honor for me to visit Marine Corps Base Quantico and have the opportunity to meet some of the brave men and women who serve our country,” said Stewart, who will compete in this weekend’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at nearby Richmond International Raceway. “I’m incredibly grateful for the sacrifices service members and their families make every day. Those sacrifices make it possible for someone like me to have the freedom to do what I love and for NASCAR fans to enjoy being at the race track. To be able to say thank you in person means a lot to me.”

The Office Depot show car will also be there.  Office Depot is one of the sponsors of the ServMart Customer Appreciation Day and values their relationship with the military:

“Office Depot is very proud of our strong relationship with the General Services Administration and the US Marine Corps,” said Greg Abrahms, Director of Military Stores for Office Depot. “It is a privilege to be able to have a presence on base at Quantico and to help support the men and women stationed there by providing the products and services they need to successfully perform their mission.”

Another reason for me to love Office Depot- like I needed one.

First off- I just want to mention that it is HARD not going to a race after I have been to one at a specific track before. Last year I went to the Fall race at Auto Club Speedway.  It was hard not to be there this time.

That being said I have decided that Tony Stewart is trying to kill me.  When the race started Tony was in 20th position.  It seemed he was at first having a mediocre run to begin with.  I am guessing (because honestly they didn’t really talk much about him) that the set up was for the slightly warmer weather and when the track was overcast it caused some issues.  Now like I said…I am assuming that- they didn’t really talk much about Tony at all during the broadcast and from what I have heard of his postrace media comments he made it sound like they missed on the set up early in the race.  During the first part of the race he tended to jockey back and forth between positions 18 and 23rd or so.  The sun came out and he seemed to start doing a little better.  I was pleased.  Then he got a pit road speeding penalty that cost him a lap.  I was not pleased (let’s just say that after the race when my friend called me to chat she said Was that you cursing a blue streak* we heard all the way down here when Tony got that speeding penalty? She wasn’t far off as she knows me quite well.)  Being a lap down had me in conniptions but there was another caution soon (thank you Denny Hamlin- I hate to see it happen but yikes it really helped Tony) and he was able to utilize the wave around to get back on the lead lap.  I relaxed…but only a little because he was still buried way back in the field.  He seemed to be slowly working his way back up the field.  Then came what would be the last green flag pit stop, and let me tell you I don’t know what Darian Grubb was thinking. I would have LOVED to know because while the strategy worked- it could have turned out quite bad.  Darian left Tony out running laps while everyone else was pitting.  If I were Darian I would have brought Tony in as soon as we hit the fuel window. He left Tony out. I still do not understand that call. It’s not like Tony needed to lead a lap for bonus points- he had done that earlier in the race.  My only thought is they thought Tony would fair better on slightly fresher tires?  Then when they did finally bring him in- they made it a FOUR tire stop instead of just two.  I mean obviously it worked out because between just passing people and a couple of on track incidents (one resulting in a 20 minute red flag) Tony ended up finishing a remarkable 5th in the race (I am still not sure how he did that magic but I will take it!). Top five. Talk about digging, clawing and fighting your way back from adversity. Because of his incredible finish Tony maintains his position in the chase as fourth,  84 points behind new Chase leader and race winner Jimmie Johnson.  Teammate Ryan Newman battled back from a cut time to finish the race in 15th which unfortunately dropped him down to 10th in the points.

Notes About Auto Club:

  • Kasey Kahne was quite upset at what he deemed a “show” caution, which he blamed for bunching the cars back up and causing the accident that took him out of the race and pretty much out of chase contention (he is now 306 points out of the lead in 11th spot).  Unfortunately for Kasey he looked a little bit like the fool, because that caution (which was thrown for debris on the backstretch) was for actual debris on the track….they even showed the big hunk of something right there on backstretch up in the top “rim rider” groove. Kasey needs a talking to by NASCAR because when Tony got pissy about debris cautions he ended up in a meeting.
  • If Dale Junior didn’t have bad luck he would have NO luck at all…as my friend says “I am staying as far away from his as I can- he has NO Luck at all.” Poor guy. I actually felt a little sorry for him when they showed the crew working on his car and him just sitting on the tire looking dejected.
  • Was it me or did Jesse McCartney miss a whole section of the National Anthem?
  • I am beginning to think I need a bottle of Tums and a direct phone line to Darian on the PitBox if I am going to survive the chase.

Next week the race is another Saturday Night race at Lowes MotorSpeedway in Charlotte.

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT- Stewart Autograph Session in Charlotte area on October 14th (that is THIS Wednesday: Speaking of the race being in Charlotte NC this week. Tony Stewart will be at the Office Depot in Pineville North Carolina as part of the Office Depot Foundation Backpack donations.  Donations are being made to several Charlotte area organization such as A Child’s Place in Charlotte, YMCA of Greater Charlotte, The PAL of Charlotte-Mecklenburg and schools in the Charlotte Mecklenbug area. Backpacks will be directly donated to the organizations. Tony Stewart will also be doing an autograph session at the Office Depot Location in Pinesville NC (address is 9610 Pinesville Matthews Road in Pinesville NC).  Tony will be there from 4:45 – 5:45 local time signing autographs for fans with wristbands. Wristbands are distributed at the location starting at 8:00 am.

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*She didn’t actually say curse a blue streak…she used the words that she thought I used. Which were also pretty close.