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(Photo Credit: Amy K. Marbach)

Last week the lugnuts were early, and this week they are late. See what has been pinging around my brain like lugnuts in a pit box during a green flag pit stop:

1. I think most Tony Stewart fans were excited to hear that he can start his rehabilitation after his appointment on Wednesday. I know it won’t be a pleasant experience but he is tenacious and is under excellent care we can be sure. We can’t wait to see you on track when you are ready Smoke!

2. A member of Kevin Harvick’s crew was in a snow mobile accident while the team was staying out west in Utah and enjoying some of the snow. Shock specialist Michael McCarville broke 7 ribs (OW) and a collapsed lung. Yikes! Sounds like he was having a great time before he hurt himself too. Speedy recovery wishes to Michael!

3. #WholeySmoke have you seen the new Tony Stewart Foundation website? It looks awesome. Check out all the ways you can help children, animals and drivers, and find out more about ALL sides of our favorite driver Tony Stewart at this new website. Of course I might be a little bias because some of our content is featured on the site! Gotta love that. Seriously check out the new webpage and while you are there drop a small (or large) donation to the foundation to show that #WholeySmoke, you support Tony Stewart!

4. Remember the story I mentioned last season in a Loose Lugnuts (see number two) about the Jeff Gordon fan who’s prized Jeff Gordon Edition Monte Carlo ended up destroyed in a car fire. Then Jeff Gordon and his father John Bickford heard the story and they gave her Jeff’s personal 24 edition Monte Carlo? I have been fortunate enough to become friendly with that fan- her name is Loraine Treadwell and she is hoping to show that Monte Carlo at different events.  The first of which will be Sunday March 20th at the Mariner’s Discovery Church Spring Festival.  The car will be on display at the festival from 11:00-3:00pm at Excelsior Middle School (14301 Byron Highway) in Byron, CA outside the old gym. Be sure to check it out and hear the story for yourself.  Tell her you heard about it from us if you go.  I am hoping to catch up with Loraine myself at one of these events. There will be more and I will be posting them as they come available.

5. Someone on Facebook pointed out that in many of the pictures I took during Tony Stewart’s presser last week, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series logo on the backdrop behind him just happens to be positioned over Tony’s head so it looks like a halo. Of course I didn’t do this on purpose and actually I didn’t even notice it until the person on Facebook pointed it out, but now it’s all I can see and it seriously cracks me up: (more…)

(This is a race diary post- meaning that I was actually at the track running around. It will be very first person and  chucked full of pictures. If you are looking for something more like my usual race report you can read the official team report for Team 14 here.  – Amy).

Garage area at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (Photo Credit: Amy K. Marbach)

Thursday

There was an open test at the track on Thursday but unfortunately I couldn’t attend- but it was open to fans who could attend for free. Now on to what I did see and experience: (more…)

Probably one of my “best” pictures I have personally taken of Tony- I tend to forget how to work my camera when in close proximity to the man. Silly Amy. (Photo Credit: Amy K. Marbach, Las Vegas Motor Speedway 2013)

Well it’s time for those wiley loose lugnuts that have been pinging around my brain this week like lugnuts in a pit box after a green flag pit stop- and we saw lots of those green flag pit stops in Atlanta didn’t we? So let’s get right to it:

1. By the time this publishes I will be driving somewhere along the 500 miles between my house and Las Vegas.  Okay so I lied- I decided to publish this post a little early so I didn’t have to worry about it tomorrow as I am driving (it’s a long drive and you would be surprised what kind of things pop into my brain as I am driving long distances).  You can still expect two things from me: 1.  Posting here on badgroove will be light until a little after I get back and get into the swing of everything. 2. You can follow my Las Vegas adventures on my social media (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook) which always gets very busy/active during a race weekend. Feel free to follow along on any of those channels but know that none of these feeds are not 100% race related. Also note that sometimes I cross post things to the different accounts- but also sometimes I forget to cross post!  You can also follow my co-blogger (and BFF) Misty on her twitter feed as she will be at the race as well. (more…)

(Photo Source: Ty Dillon Facebook Page)

Replacement Driver: Ty Dillon

Started: 18th

Finished: 17th

I think I was more excited for the pre-race for this race than the actual race itself since it was announced that an interview of Tony Stewart by Jeff Gordon would be shown.  Let’s just say this was the first pre-race I have actually watched in over a year.  Here is the interview in case you might have missed it: (more…)

Ty Dillon doing media at Atlanta Motor Speedway (Photo source: Stewart-Haas Racing Twitter)

I am hoping that late lugnuts are better than no lugnuts this week but between the Ford announcement and the day job and a puppy that demands my attention when I get home because she is currently going through a very mischievous stage right now I had to delay the lugnuts post!  Here is what has been pinging around my head this week like lugnuts in a pitbox during a green flag pitstop:

1. Biggest thing this week was the Stewart-Haas manufacturer switch announcement that seemed to take everyone by surprise which is interesting to me because usually when something happens there always seems to be rumblings about it on social media. This literally WAS the biggest secret in NASCAR in a while.  Well until it wasn’t a secret any more.  I already had my say about the switch here. BUT I did want to share some additional information that I didn’t know at the time of that writing- and that is that for those who are upset about Tony affiliating his team with Ford for 2017- Tony HAS driven a Ford himself in competition before- just not NASCAR. You can read more about that here in an article from National Speed Sport News.

2. Also for those interested in the teleconference Stewart-Haas had following the initial online announcement I have two resources for you. First is an audio of highlights of the press conference as posted by SiriusXM NASCAR with Tony Stewart. And second I found a transcript of the press conference now too that you can find here as posted by Autoweek.  (more…)

(Photo source: Mobil 1 Facebook Page/ HHP)

Replacement Driver: Brian Vickers

Started: 18th

Finished: 26th

Points: Vickers is 25th in points

Like most Tony Stewart fans, I was most excited during the Daytona pre-race and race when we got to hear from Tony Stewart of course.  Here is a video of his call into the pre-race show: (more…)

Brian Vickers doing media for the 14 team. (Photo Credit: Stewart-Haas Racing Twitter)

Here has what’s been pinging around my brain like loose lugnuts in a pit box during a green flag pit stop (have your missed these posts? I sure have).

1. So am I the only one who things that the dual races called the Can Am Duels should be called the Dual Duels? I think that would be awesome.  Of course I have a think for alliterations so it might just be me. The Duels are tonight and remember that Harvick and Vickers will be starting from the rear of their respective duel because of the track bar issues post qualifying.  GO VICKERS! GO TEAM 14. I hate that the duels are so early in the day because I have to follow on line from work. I hope that all SHR cars get through their duel unscathed and with a good starting position for the 500 (fingers crossed). I still wish they would just let Brian run all the races until Tony gets back so we have some continuity.

2. Kevin Harvick will be pitted by a back-up jack man as his normal jack man Mike Casto recovers from surgery.  Long time Tony fans may remember Mike from when he pitted on the 14 team not so long ago.  Get well soon Mike. (more…)

Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch Beer Chevrolet, Brian Vickers, driver of the #14 Mobil 1 Chevrolet, Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, and Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 McDonald’s Chevrolet, race during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway on February 13, 2016 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

The Unlimited

The season opening race of the Sprint Unlimited was a bit of a disappointment for Stewart-Haas Racing and especially for the 14 car as piloted by Brian Vickers during the race.  Brian Vickers seemed to be doing well- hovering for most of the race around 10th, sometimes higher sometimes lower as happens during restrictor plate races. He may not have been driving last season, but he was doing just fine piloting the 14 car on Saturday night in Daytona. For awhile he was even up to 4th position and was always right in the thick of the battle. He even had one heck of a save after getting a little too loose and slightly touching another car something that would cause many drivers to go ping ponging off of other drivers.  Unfortunately for several cars though, on Lap 22 of the 75 lap season opener, the 14 car cut a right rear tire sending Vickers into another car and then careering up into the wall and then back down into the infield.  He ended up severely wounding team mate Kevin Harvick’s car and opening up the side of Dale Earnhardt Jr’s car like a can of tuna. Despite the hard lick that had everyone holding their breath for a bit- Brian Vickers and all other drivers involved in the multi-car accident were alright after being evaluated at the infield care center.  Brian has been having so much fun all weekend and seems to be really appreciating the opportunity just to be in Tony’s car. I actually am more impressed with him so far than I thought I would be.  Come on Brian Vickers and Team 14 for the 500! (more…)