Wednesday, Feb 08
Speedway Digest Staff

Speedway Digest Staff

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Raw power gets a stamp of its own today when seven-time NASCAR National Champion Richard Petty helps dedicate the America on the Move: Muscle Cars Forever stamps.

Petty, his son Kyle and Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe will dedicate the limited-edition stamps at the Daytona International Speedway where "The King" won a record seven Daytona 500 Championships.

Typically equipped with big, powerful engines, these high-performance vehicles began roaring across America in the 1960s. The limited edition stamps feature five iconic muscle cars: the '66 Pontiac GTO, the '67 Shelby GT-500, the '69 Dodge Charger Daytona, the '70 Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda and the '70 Chevelle SS.

"The Muscle Cars stamps celebrate an exciting era in American automotive history," said Richard Petty. "These examples of raw power bring back fond memories for me and my family, a testament to how aerodynamics transformed racing. I've been around racing and muscle cars all my life. These stamps bring back the memories of our racing heritage in the '60s and '70s. This is a great way to share our stories, old and new, about the Petty history in racing."

"The muscle cars gave everyday Americans the opportunity to experience the rush of driving a fast, powerful car," said Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe. "Just looking at the stamps evokes a feeling of speed. As Forever stamps, they'll always be good for mailing a First-Class letter anytime in the future. And when you think about it, that's fitting. Because these stamps—just like the great cars they represent—are timeless."

The Muscle Cars Forever stamps are the third issuance in the America on the Move stamp series. The artwork was created by Tom Fritz of Newbury Park, CA, under the art direction of Carl T. Herrman of North Las Vegas, NV. Other issuances in the series, '50s Sporty Cars (2005) , followed by '50s Fins and Chrome (2008) , were the work of artist Art Fitzpatrick of Carlsbad, CA.

The Muscle Cars stamps are being issued as Forever stamps in self-adhesive sheets of 20 (four of each design). Forever stamps are always equal in value to the current First-Class Mail 1-ounce price.

1966 Pontiac GTO
The Pontiac GTO ushered in the American muscle-car era in the mid-1960s, just as the first baby boomers began to come of age. The first GTO was born when engineers dropped a 389-cubic-inch V8 engine, which was built for a full-size sedan, into an intermediate-size Pontiac Tempest LeMans. Initially offered simply as an option on the Tempest LeMans, the GTO — which in Italian stood for Gran Turismo Omologato, or in English, Grand Touring Homologated — became its own model in 1966.

Available as a hardtop, coupe or convertible, the 1966 Pontiac GTO was equipped with a standard 335-horsepower V8 engine. The "Goat" could really move. In tests, it went from 0 to 60 mph in 6.8 seconds. It also looked much different than its predecessors. Starting in 1966, the car featured curvy Coke-bottle styling and a split grille.  

1967 Shelby GT-500
Manufacturer Carroll Shelby's take on the Ford Mustang reflected his roots as a race car driver. The 1967 Shelby GT-500 was powered by a 428-cubic-inch, 355-horsepower Police Interceptor engine. The car also featured a rear spoiler and optional dealer-installed LeMans stripes. Rocker panel stripes came standard on the 1967 Shelby GT-500, which also sported grille-mounted headlights. A scooped fiberglass hood, extended nose, and interior roll bar and shoulder harnesses further enhanced the race car feel.

The 1967 Shelby GT-500 was more than just a racer. The improved suspension softened the ride, resulting in a vehicle that was comfortable to drive on the highway as well as on the track. The car was both striking and rare; only 2,048 were built. A customized or original version of the 1967 Shelby GT-500 has appeared in contemporary movies and magazines, rekindling American pop culture's fascination with the model. In 2007, Ford reintroduced the Shelby GT-500 into the Mustang model lineup.

1969 Dodge Charger Daytona
The outrageously styled 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona was designed to dominate on the racetrack. The car, which underwent wind-tunnel testing before its release, took the checkered flag at its NASCAR debut in September 1969 at Alabama International Motor Speedway in Talladega. The production version of the car was powered by a standard 440-cubic-inch, 375-horsepower Magnum engine. A limited number of Daytonas also were available with a 426-cubic-inch Hemi, a race-inspired engine Chrysler introduced earlier that decade. Chrysler first used a version of the Hemi — a high-performance engine with hemispherical combustion chambers — in automobiles in the 1950s.

Concealed headlights, fender-mounted scoops, a nearly 2-foot tall, rear-mounted wing and an 18-inch nose piece helped boost aerodynamics. Other signature touches were thick body stripes containing the word "DAYTONA." The distinctive vehicles were not easy to come by. In order to qualify for NASCAR racing, at least 500 Daytonas had to be made available for purchase. Only 503 were produced.

1970 Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda
The 1970 Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda, a performance-oriented alter-ego of the standard 1970 Plymouth Barracuda, oozed power. The car's 426-cubic-inch Hemi engine was a 425-horsepower beast. The car was part of what Plymouth called "The Rapid Transit System." The 1970 Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda was "our angriest, slipperiest-looking body shell wrapped around ol' King Kong hisself," one advertisement bellowed.

One of the 1970 Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda's more audacious features was a Shaker hood scoop, which vibrated as air flowed through to the engine's two four-barrel carburetors. The car's styling was an extension of its bold ethos. It was available in a variety of eye-popping color choices, such as Lemon Twist, Lime Light and Vitamin C. Hockey-stick shaped stripes denoting engine size, a shifter handle shaped like a pistol grip and bucket seats also were offered. The model also is a rare specimen, as fewer than 700 were produced.

1970 Chevelle SS
With features like optional twin racing stripes, the 1970 Chevelle SS looked fierce. SS stood for Super Sport, a fitting designation for this power car. A 396-cubic-inch engine was available, but a 454-cubic-inch engine option gave the 1970 Chevelle SS credibility among muscle car enthusiasts. Two versions of the 454 engine were available: the 360-horsepower LS-5 and the 450-horsepower LS-6. For its sheer power, the latter has become legendary among car buffs.

The LS-6-propelled 1970 Chevelle SS was enough to finish in the 13-second range in quarter-mile tests. Optional Cowl Induction, a flap on the bulged hood that allowed cold air to flow into the engine, added even more kick. In addition to its impressive road performance, the 1970 Chevelle SS also was known for its unique style. Available as a coupe or a convertible, it featured a black grille and SS emblems on both the grille and the rear bumper.

Customers may view the America on the Move: Muscle Cars Forever stamps, as well as many of this year's other stamps, on Facebook at facebook.com/USPSStamps , on Twitter @USPSstamps  or on the website Beyond the Perf at beyondtheperf.com/2013-preview . Beyond the Perf is the Postal Service's online site for information on upcoming stamp subjects, first-day-of-issue events and other philatelic news.

Ordering First-Day-of-Issue Postmarks

Customers have 60 days to obtain the first-day-of-issue postmark by mail. They may purchase new stamps at local Post Offices, at usps.com/stamps or by calling 800-STAMP-24. They should affix the stamps to envelopes of their choice, address the envelopes to themselves or others and place them in a larger envelope addressed to:

Muscle Cars Stamps
Postmaster
500 Bill France Blvd
Daytona Beach, FL 32114

After applying the first-day-of-issue postmark, the Postal Service will return the envelopes through the mail. There is no charge for the postmark. All orders must be postmarked by April 22, 2013.

Ordering First-Day Covers

The Postal Service also offers first-day covers for new stamp issues and Postal Service stationery items postmarked with the official first-day-of-issue cancellation. Each item has an individual catalog number and is offered in the quarterly USA Philatelic catalog, online at usps.com/shop or by calling 800-782-6724. Customers may request a free catalog by calling 800-782-6724 or writing to:

U.S. Postal Service
Catalog Request
PO Box 219014
Kansas City, MO  64121-9014

Philatelic Products

Seven philatelic products are available:

  • 470506 Muscle Cars uncut press sheet — a unique way to showcase an exciting era in American automotive history and perfect for framing, this 36.25-inch x 12.6-inch press sheet with die-cuts contains 10 sheets of 20 Muscle Cars Forever stamps positioned five across by two down. Maximum order 5. $92
  • 470508 Muscle Cars uncut press sheet (without die cuts). Maximum order 5. $92
  • 470510  Muscle Cars Digital Color Postmark Keepsake — Teeming with horsepower, this collectible package includes a sheet of 20 Muscle Cars Forever stamps and a set of five number 6 envelopes — each with a different, affixed Muscle Cars stamp and a First-Day-of-Issue color postmark. $17.95
  • 470516 Muscle Cars First-Day Cover — Rev up your collection with this dynamic set of five first-day covers. Each number 6 envelope features a different affixed Muscle Cars Forever stamp and a First-Day-of-Issue black pictorial postmark. $4.50
  • 470530 Muscle Cars Ceremony Program — Celebrate an exciting era in automotive history and the Muscle Cars Forever first day of issue with an official ceremony program and cover. The full-color, custom-designed program features the first-day ceremony agenda and participants on one side, with a narrative about these iconic cars and the stamp designs on the reverse. $6.95
  • 470524 Muscle Cars Framed Stamp Art (silver matt w/stamps) — Roar down memory lane with this ready-to-hang artwork that displays a sheet of the 2013 limited edition Muscle Cars Forever stamps.  The dynamic stamp designs depict five iconic muscle cars: the 1966 Pontiac GTO, the 1967 Shelby GT-100, the 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona, the 1970 Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda, and the 1970 Chevelle SS.  The Muscle Cars Forever stamps are the third issuance in the America on the Move stamp series. The stamp artwork was created by Tom Fritz under the art direction of Carl T. Herrman.  This 13" x 14" art features a silver mat, chrome-colored frame, non-breakable plexi-glass to protect the stamps, and a dust cover on the back.  A saw tooth hanger is installed on the back for easy wall display. $39.95
  • 470525 Muscle Cars Framed Stamp Art (car sketch collage mat w/stamps) — Roar down memory lane with this ready-to-hang artwork that features a sheet of the 2013 limited edition Muscle Cars Forever stamps.  The dynamic stamp designs depict five iconic muscle cars: the 1966 Pontiac GTO, the 1967 Shelby GT-100, the 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona, the 1970 Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda, and the 1970 Chevelle SS.  The Muscle Cars Forever stamps are the third issuance in the America on the Move stamp series. The stamp artwork was created by Tom Fritz under the art direction of Carl T. Herrman.  The 13" x 14" art is comprised of a mat bearing a collage of muscle car sketches, chrome-colored frame, non-breakable plexi-glass to protect the stamps, and a dust cover on the back.  A saw tooth hanger is installed on the back for easy wall display. $39.95

USPS PR

An engine turned sour derailed a promising run for Scott Riggs and the No. 92 BTS Tire and Wheel Distributors/fleetHQ Chevrolet in the NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway.

"That was about to get fun," said Riggs after a blown engine knocked him out of the race on lap 26. "We had a really good truck. (Crew chief) Mike (Hester) and these guys put a good piece under me. It was stable and was great in the draft. We had a truck that could have finished in the top five."

After starting 18th, Riggs quickly put the No. 92 in the top 10 in the running order, despite being in the slower-moving top lane for his entire 26-lap run.

The No. 92 finished in 35th place.

"Sure, it's disappointing," said Hester as the team loaded the truck to head back to North Carolina. "We had a great truck and Scott was doing a heck of a job. But these things happen in racing. We will take the truck back to Cerro Gordo (N.C.) and see what the problem was with the engine and work with our supplier to make sure it doesn't happen again.

"It wasn't the finish we wanted, but I'm encouraged by the progress we've made."

The team will be back on track at Martinsville Speedway on April 6 when the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series returns to action.

RBR PR

Roush Fenway’s Trevor Bayne started his campaign for the 2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series Championship in fine form, turning a lap 50.801 (177.162 mph) in his No. 6 Cargill Ford to win the pole for Saturday’s NNS kickoff race at Daytona International Speedway. His RFR teammate Travis Pastrana posted the fourth-fastest time in the session at 50.952.

The pole is Roush Fenway’s second NNS pole at Daytona and its ninth NASCAR pole at the World Center of Racing. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. won RFR’s first Daytona NNS pole here last July.

“I’m starting to like this stage up here pretty good,” said Bayne, who won the 2011 Daytona 500. “It normally means something good happens, but I’m excited about our pole run.  

“This whole team, I’ve been talking them up all off-season, but that’s because they deserve it,” added Bayne. “This group of guys, they’ve won two championships in a row and that’s for a reason.  Ricky Stenhouse did them a ton of justice and he’s done a great job in that car, but I’m excited to be the guy driving it this year and we’ve started off with a bang here with the pole.  It’s not a win yet, but it’s a good start, so we’ll be happy to see that flag flying up on top of the truck here the rest of the season.”

Pastrana was solid in his Daytona qualifying debut topping out at 176.637 mph. The action sports legend will look to ‘kickstart’ his 2013 effort with a solid showing in the series opener.

“As easy as that sounds and as high as our expectations were and how good the car and crew are it was still a big thing (to qualify fourth),” said Pastrana. “Chad (Norris), my crew chief, said that we were going to do mock runs, qualifying runs in practice because we had to make the show. He said the only thing that matters is to make the show. If we could make it without crashing it is a good day at Daytona. Otherwise a pole would be nice and winning would be nice but we have to take what we can get for now and just get these points up.”

Bayne and Pastrana will vie for Roush Fenway’s first Nationwide Series win at Daytona in tomorrow’s race.

Saturday’s Nationwide race is set for 1:00 p.m. EST time and will be televised live on ESPN.

RFR PR

Penske Racing (@PenskeRacing) development driver Ryan Blaney (@RyanBlaney22) has launched his new website, RyanBlaney.com, which will give fans increased access and interaction with the rising star as he strives to become the youngest champion in the history of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Website features include up-to-date news articles, racing accomplishments, team information, racing and personal appearance schedules, partner information, multi-media content, social media access, and much more.

 

Blaney, who made nine Truck Series starts in 2012, will be behind the wheel of the No. 29 Cooper Standard Ford F-Series full-time for Brad Keselowski Racing (@TeamBKR) as he competes for both the 2013 drivers' and owners' championships in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He will also compete in select NASCAR Nationwide Series events for Penske Racing driving the No. 22 Discount Tire Ford Mustang.

 

Blaney begins his championship pursuit tonight (Friday, February 22, 2013) during the season opening NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Fans can tune-in to follow Blaney and the No. 29 Cooper Standard Ford F-Series on SPEED and MRN / Sirius XM 90 with coverage starting at 7:00 P.M. EST.

 

Ryan Blaney PR

Roush Fenway’s Travis Pastrana will make his official Daytona NASCAR debut in Saturday’s Nationwide Series race, at the World Center of Racing, but actually got in a little track time early this week when he raced FOX’s CAMCAT, a unique suspended HD camera system that spans across the front stretch of the famed Daytona International Speedway.

“It was cool to get onto the track and race FOX's new camera,” said Pastrana. “It's a very unique camera angle and I think they'll get some great shots with it.

Pastrana, mounted on a 2013 Victory Cross Country Edition motorcyle, reached speeds in excess of 110 mph and was able to outduel the ‘Cat’. Volusia Motorsports, a local Victory Motorcycle Dealer out of New Smyrna Beach, Florida, provided the bike. For more info visit www.victorymotorcycles.com

Click here for full photo gallery of the ‘race.’

RFR PR

Quicken Loans Inc., the nation’s third largest mortgage lender, today announced the launch of the company’s “Bring It Home” sweepstakes, which will pay five peoples’ mortgages for a month each time Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 39 Quicken Loans Chevrolet for Stewart-Haas Racing, finishes among the top-five in a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. 

Consumers can enter the sweepstakes by visiting www.qlracing.com.  To increase their chances of winning a month-long vacation from their mortgage, sweepstakes participants are eligible to enter weekly, and can also win additional entries by inviting their friends and family to participate.

“Coming into the 2013 season, we have really increased our support of Ryan and Quicken Loans’ involvement in NASCAR in general.  We were looking for a fun, and impactful, way to help engage with the fans, and I think we have found it,” said Jay Farner, President and Chief Marketing Officer at Quicken Loans.  “Every weekend we find ourselves on the edge of our seats cheering Ryan on, and now everyone in our sweepstakes will have another reason to do the same.  We are looking forward to a very good season and paying a ton of mortgage payments for the fans.”

Each Monday, after Newman brings it home with a top-five finish in a Sprint Cup race, Quicken Loans will draw the names of five lucky winners, which will be posted to the company’s Facebook (www.facebook.com/quickenloansracing) and Twitter (@quickenloans) pages. 

“I think I just gained a lot of new fans who are keeping a close eye on me to make sure I bring it home for them,” joked Newman.  “It is always fun to drive for a sponsor like Quicken Loans who just plain gets it when it comes to interacting with NASCAR fans.  I can guarantee you that I will be pushing to bring it home, and can’t wait to help a lot of people take a month off from their mortgage payment.”

Quicken Loans will serve as Newman’s primary sponsor for 18 Sprint Cup races in 2013, beginning with the 55th Daytona 500 Sunday at Daytona International Speedway.  When not the primary sponsor, the company will be an associate sponsor on Newman’s No. 39 Chevrolet. The company also serves as an associate sponsor of three-time Sprint Cup champion Tony Stewart and Sprint Cup rookie-of-the-year candidate, and Daytona 500 polesitter Danica Patrick, both of whom are teammates with Newman at Stewart-Haas Racing.

TSC

Mark Reuss, General Motors North America president, who was instrumental in bringing the new Chevrolet SS to NASCAR, will be the honorary pace car driver for the 55th annual Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 24.

He will be behind the wheel of a 2014 production Chevrolet SS.

“Leading the Daytona 500 starting field to green driving a 2014 Chevrolet SS pace car on one of the most famous race tracks in the world will be a special honor for me,” Reuss said. “I can’t wait to drive across the start/finish line and on into Turn 1. I know it will be difficult to turn down onto pit road when it’s over because I will want to make that moment last as long as possible.”

The 2014 Chevrolet SS pace car has been busy during its Speedweeks debut, earlier pacing The Sprint Unlimited and both Budweiser Duels. The 2014 Chevrolet SS is the first V-8, rear-wheel drive performance sedan for Chevrolet since 1996.

“The Chevrolet brand was largely built on the strength of rear-drive performance sedans, yet it's been 17 years since we've offered one,” Reuss said when the production car was unveiled at the track last weekend. “The all-new Chevrolet SS fills that void and fills it better than any other vehicle in the brand’s rich history. The comfort, convenience, spaciousness and V-8 power make the SS a total performance package unlike any other on the road today.”

The Chevrolet SS accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in about five seconds – making it one of the quickest sedans on the market.

The 2014 Chevrolet SS will be available in the fourth quarter of 2013, with prices set closer to the on-sale date. 

This is the first time that Reuss has been an honorary pace car driver for a NASCAR race.

DIS PR

Today NASCAR celebrated the outstanding achievements of ground-breaking individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to the advancement of diversity initiatives at the sixth annual NASCAR Diversity Awards Luncheon. 

"At the luncheon, we have an opportunity to celebrate a few of the people and organizations whose dedication and commitment are shining examples of our industry understanding the importance of diversity and inclusion in all aspects of our sport," said Marcus Jadotte, NASCAR vice president of public affairs and multicultural development.” From the competitors on tracks to the employee’s across our offices, NASCAR is more diverse than ever and we have positioned ourselves to place the sport in front of new audiences like never before.”

During a ceremony held at The DAYTONA 500 Club at Daytona International Speedway, NASCAR recognized the following individuals and organizations across the industry:

NASCAR Diverse Driver: Kyle Larson

In his first season of NASCAR competition, Kyle Larson – a Japanese-American from Elk Grove, Calif. – raced into the record books in impressive fashion. In 2012, Kyle scored two wins and 12 top 10s in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East. He capped his season off with Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors en route to bringing home Rev Racing and the NASCAR Drive for Diversity’s first series championship. Kyle became just the third driver in NASCAR K&N Pro Series East history to capture the championship and Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors in the same season.

Kyle signed on with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing and will make his national series debut this season in the NASCAR Nationwide Series where he has a full-time ride with Turner Scott Motorsports. He has already been to Victory Lane once in 2013 when he won the opening race of the UNOH Battle At The Beach on Monday, Feb. 18.

NASCAR Diverse Crew Member Award: Tesfa Lee

The NASCAR Pit Crew Development Program Presented by Sprint is designed to identify, coach, train and develop minority athletes who possess the skill, ability and attitude to be a successful NASCAR pit crew member. Today’s crew member award winner, Tesfa Lee, exemplifies the desire and talent the program was created to develop.

When Tesfa Lee showed up to the 2009 Combine with very little background in NASCAR the coaching team did not know what to expect. He proved to be a fast learner and in seven months had already started working with a team in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Tesfa has followed that up with consistent improvement and has gained excellent experience as part of several championship-winning teams. In 2010, he was part of the Germain Racing team that won the NASCAR Camping World Truck championship with Todd Bodine. Then last year, he was a member on Ricky Stenhouse Jr.’s NASCAR Nationwide Series team that won the title for Roush Fenway Racing. In 2013, Tesfa will continue his great work with Roush Fenway as a member of Trevor Bayne’s No. 21 NASCAR Sprint Cup and No. 6 NASCAR Nationwide Series crews.

NASCAR Diversity Internship Program Award: Stacey Houston

Stacey Houston, a senior at Davidson College (N.C.), interned in Charlotte, N.C., with the Market Research Group in the NASCAR Marketing Department. During the course of his internship, Stacey worked on a variety of projects, one of which was the development of a database that allows the department to create more impactful and meaningful questionnaires for the official NASCAR fan council.

Institution Award: Ten80

The Ten80 Student Racing Challenge is a project-based STEM curriculum and annual competition league that provides students with professional development opportunities in related disciplines. Ten80 Student Racing Challenge teams are mini-race teams that compete using a 1:10 scale electric radio-controlled car. This program has helped thousands of students not only develop a passion for NASCAR and motorsports but also to cement their interest in careers based on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

NASCAR Partner Award: Octagon

As the agency of record for several of NASCAR’s key partners including Sprint and Sunoco, Octagon has diligently worked with NASCAR to create and support initiatives that help to expose the sport to new audiences in unique ways. Octagon’s dedication has led the company to annually bring on an intern from the NASCAR Diversity Internship Program, a commitment that has given several minority students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the sport.

NASCAR Young Racer Award: Ryleigh Lemonds

Nine-year-old Ryleigh Lemonds is making her mark as a future driver to watch. During 2012, Ryleigh competed in 29 races and wheeled off 10 wins, 27 top 5s and 29 top 10s, winning on five tracks in three states. Ryleigh’s epic season ended with her winning the Langley Speedway Bandolero Track championship and the 2012 INEX Virginia State Bandolero Bandit championship.

In 2013, Ryleigh will be a developmental driver with Rev Racing, participating in arena racing and driving one of the team’s Bandolero cars at select tracks throughout the southeast.

NASCAR Industry Ambassador: Bryan Sperber

As president of the Phoenix International Raceway, Bryan Sperber sets the strategic direction for one of NASCAR’s most popular tracks. Under Sperber’s leadership, Phoenix International Raceway has become imbedded in the local community and continuously seeks to form partnerships with minority organizations such as the Arizona Hispanic Chamber Of Commerce. In 2013, Phoenix International Raceway will host the NASCAR Toyota Series’ inaugural race in the United States, where some of Mexico’s best drivers will compete during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekend.

NASCAR PR

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