Monday, Dec 04
Speedway Digest Staff

Speedway Digest Staff

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Singer-songwriter, actor, and music producer Toby Keith will serve as Grand Marshal for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Sunday, November 17.  Homestead-Miami Speedway President Matthew Becherer made the announcement.

Keith will deliver the most famous words in motorsports, “Drivers start your engines,” to commence the 15th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in South Florida and the 12th consecutive championship finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

“Toby Keith is an American icon and, like Homestead-Miami Speedway, he has a great partnership with Ford,” said Becherer. “He is the perfect individual to officially start the Ford EcoBoost 400.  We’ll have live music before the race from Miami’s own DJ Irie and a soon-to-be-announced concert act. And then, Toby will keep the excitement going by giving the command for drivers to start their engines and begin 267 laps of championship racing.”

Keith released his 17th studio album “Drinks After Work” on October 29, 2013.  One of the most prolific songwriters and touring artists, Keith has performed many concerts in the Middle East for the U.S. armed forces.  The Oklahoma native has 32 number one song singles to his credit.


Race number 35 of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season, and Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup race number 9, will be the AdvoCare 500k at Phoenix International Raceway. There are 43 cars on the entry list which means all of the teams will make Sunday's race.

Event Schedule: AdvoCare 500k

Friday: 1:35 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. ET Practice on Fox Sports 1, 5:40 p.m. ET Qualifying on Fox Sports 2

Saturday: 11:30 a.m. - 12:25 p.m. ET Practice on Fox Sports 1, 2:30 p.m. - 3:35 p.m. ET Final Practice on Fox Sports 1

Sunday: 3 p.m. ET Race on ESPN

Track & Race Information: Phoenix International Raceway

1 mile oval - 312 laps, 312 miles (500 km)

Grandstand Seating - 55,000

First Sprint Cup Series Race - 1988, 34 Races

Most Wins - Jimmie Johnson (4)

Last Two Winners - Carl Edwards (March 2013) - Kevin Harvick (November 2012)

Entry List: OPR = Owner Points Rank BOLD = Chase

Car # Driver Sponsor Manufacturer Team OPR
1 Jamie McMurray Lexar Chevrolet EGR 15
2 Brad Keselowski Miler Lite Ford Penske 14
5 Kasey Kahne Farmers Insurance Chevrolet Hendrick 13
7 Dave Blaney Ultra Wheel Chevrolet TBR 32
9 Marcos Ambrose DeWalt Ford RPM 22
10 Danica Patrick GoDaddy - It's Go Time Chevrolet SHR 27
11 Denny Hamlin FedEx Ground Toyota JGR 25
13 Casey Mears GEICO Ford Germain 26
14 Mark Martin Mobil 1 / Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet SHR 18
15 Clint Bowyer 5-Hour Energy Toyota MWR 7
16 Greg Biffle Scotch Ford RFR 8
17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr RFR Driven Ford RFR 21
18 Kyle Busch M&Ms Toyota JGR 4
20 Matt Kenseth Dollar General Toyota JGR 2
22 Joey Logano Shell Pennzoil Ford Penske 9
24 Jeff Gordon Axalta Chevrolet Hendrick 6
27 Paul Menard Rheem / Menards Chevrolet RCR 17
29 Kevin Harvick Budweiser Chevrolet RCR 3
30 Cole Whitt Swan Energy Toyota Swan 34
31 Jeff Burton @CATMining Chevrolet RCR 20
32 Timmy Hill U.S. Chrome Ford FAS Lane 38
33 Tony Raines Little Joe's Auto Chevrolet Circle Sport 37
34 David Ragan Taco Bell Ford Front Row 29
35 Josh Wise MDS Transport Ford Front Row 39
36 JJ Yeley Accell Construction Chevrolet TBR 35
38 David Gilliland Long John Silver's Ford Front Row 28
39 Ryan Newman Quicken Loans - Salute to Veterans Day Chevrolet SHR 12
40 Landon Cassill Hillman Racing Chevrolet Circle Sport 43
42 Juan Pablo Montoya Target Camo - Salute to Veterans Day Chevrolet EGR 23
43 Aric Almirola Smithfield Ford RPM 19
47 Bobby Labonte Wounded Warrior Project / Clorox Toyota JTG/D 30
48 Jimmie Johnson Lowe's Kobalt Tools Chevrolet Hendrick 1
51 Justin Allgaier BRANDT Chevrolet Phoenix 31
55 Elliott Sadler Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota MWR 24
56 Martin Truex Jr NAPA Auto Parts Toyota MWR 16
78 Kurt Busch Furniture Row / Denver Mattress Chevrolet Furniture Row 10
83 David Reutimann Burger King / Dr Pepper Toyota BK Racing 36
87 Joe Nemechek NEMCO - JRR Toyota NEMCO/JRR 40
88 Dale Earnhardt Jr National Guard Chevrolet Hendrick 5
93 Travis Kvapil Burger King / Dr Pepper Toyota BK Racing 33
95 Reed Sorenson Jetset Getset Ford LFR 44
98 Michael McDowell Phil Parsons Racing Ford PPR 42
99 Carl Edwards Fastenal Ford RFR 11

Entry List Notes:

Bobby Labonte will make his final start for JTG/Daugherty Racing in the No. 47 Toyota.

Mark Martin will be in the No. 14 for Stewart-Haas Racing once again.

Elliott Sadler will race his third event for Michael Waltrip Racing in the No. 55 Toyota as Brian Vickers is out for the rest of the season due to a blot clot in his calf.

Justin Allgaier will make his fourth career start driving the No. 51 Chevrolet for Phoenix Racing.

Cole Whitt will make his seventh start of the season for Swan Racing in the No. 30 Toyota.

Tony Raines will make his tenth start of the season. He will be in the No. 33 for Circle Sport Racing.

Reed Sorenson will make his sixth start for Leavine Family Racing in the No. 95 Ford.

Check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.

Tommy Baldwin Racing Announced a sponsorship deal that is in place for this weekend's AdvoCare 500k at Phoenix International Raceway.

Ultra Wheel is a custom wheel shop that doesn't base themselves off a slogan or an icon to create their identity like others. The owner of Ultra Wheel is Jim Smith who was a long time owner in NASCAR and his team Ultra Motorsports won 36 races in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series including the 2005 championship with driver Ted Musgrave. Ultra Wheels will sponsor driver Dave Blaney and his #7 Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet.

"We are happy to be teaming up with Ultra Wheel for the upcoming race weekend at Phoenix International Raceway. Jim Smith is familiar with the motorsports industry and how things work, which helps to create a great partnership for both TBR and Ultra Wheel," said team owner Tommy Baldwin.

Blaney is a veteran on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series tour and will make his 467th career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start on Sunday. Blaney has run in 33 of the 34 races in the Sprint Cup Series season in 2013 and has a best finish of 16th at Talladega in April. Team owner Tommy Baldwin commented on the sponsorship deal.

Check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.

Hulman & Company CEO Mark Miles has completed the formation of his leadership team by naming two accomplished sales and marketing executives with extensive automotive and racing industry roots as the leaders of the sales, licensing, marketing and communications functions of Hulman Motorsports.

Connell J. (C.J.) O'Donnell, who has worked in key marketing positions for various brands within Ford Motor Company, will join Hulman Motorsports as chief marketing officer, and Jay Frye, a racing executive who successfully transformed two teams into NASCAR Sprint Cup contenders, is the new chief revenue officer.

"We've set a new strategic direction for our motorsports entities, and Jay and C.J. are both top performers who will help us take big leaps forward," Miles said. "Among their immediate goals are to add sponsors for INDYCAR and IMS, improve our level of fan engagement and develop strategies to build alignment among our teams, drivers, venues and sponsors. Our team is in place, and there's no offseason as we prepare for 2014."

The appointments complete a reorganization that began earlier this year. This includes combining the commercial functions of INDYCAR and IMS, including sales, licensing, marketing and communications, into Hulman Motorsports, which O'Donnell and Frye will lead. In May, Derrick Walker was named as president of INDYCAR operations and competition. Other members of the Hulman leadership team include Jeff Belskus, president and chief financial officer of Hulman & Company; Gretchen Snelling, vice president and chief legal counsel; Robby Greene, president of IMS Productions; and Doug Boles, president of Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation.

O'Donnell recently served as Ford's group marketing manager for electric vehicles in Detroit, where he was recognized for the launch of several hybrid vehicles and has orchestrated a record year for hybrid and electric vehicle sales. During his 20-year career with Ford, he also has led marketing for the Lincoln and Jaguar brands domestically and abroad and was a member of a small team that led the turnaround of the Mazda brand.

"There's a lot of strength in the combined horsepower of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and INDYCAR," O'Donnell said. "Initially, I'll focus my energy on a common brand and clear message for our fans. This will include working together with our key stakeholders and ensuring marketing alignment among teams, drivers, sponsors and venues."

O'Donnell will lead a combined team of INDYCAR and IMS marketing and communications staff.

Frye led the transformation of the Red Bull Racing Team in NASCAR Sprint Cup into a contender that earned a berth in the 2009 Chase for the Championship during his tenure as vice president and general manager from 2008-11. In addition, he spent 12 years at MB2 Motorsports, LLC, a NASCAR Sprint Cup team he helped build from the ground up into a multi-team operation. As the chief executive officer and general manager, he negotiated what was an industry-first - a sponsorship/ownership package with The Valvoline Company.

Frye also has other sales and marketing experience, including several years with Anheuser-Busch.

"INDYCAR's value proposition for sponsors is second to none as it provides fans with a great racing product, and with IMS, we have incredible history and tradition," Frye said. "For our teams and fans, we will work hard to bring sponsor/partners into the sport that will enhance the overall fan experience. It's an exciting opportunity, and I look forward to being a part of the team."

Frye will lead a combined team of INDYCAR and IMS sponsorship sales, licensing and account services staff. IMS suite and hospitality sales will remain an IMS function under Boles' direction.


NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Kevin Harvick took a detour on his way to Phoenix International Raceway on Wednesday, stopping in his hometown of Bakersfield, Calif., to host the Fourth Annual Happy's Classic Golf Tournament Presented by Advanced Distribution and Blackhole Technologies. 


Proceeds from the tournament, held at Bakersfield Country Club, benefit the Kevin Harvick Foundation, dedicated to the support of programs that positively enrich the lives of children throughout the United States.


As part of a continuing effort to support athletics at North High School, Harvick's alma mater in Bakersfield, the Kevin Harvick Foundation also surprised the school's golf teams with a donation of 21 sets of new golf clubs, golf bags, putters and team apparel. Additionally, the Foundation honored its newest student athlete with the presentation of the Kevin Harvick Athletic Scholarship to California State University-Bakersfield student athlete Coleman Hammond. Hammond, a member of the university's wrestling team, received a one-year, full scholarship toward his college education.


"It's always fun to take a quick break from the pressures of the NASCAR championship this time of year and spend it in my hometown and with some of its students," said Harvick, a former North High School wrestler and 1994 graduate. "Happy's Classic continues to grow every year to help more and more underprivileged children across the country, as well as North High School student athletes. I am so grateful to companies like Advanced Distribution, Blackhole Technologies and Cobra Puma Golf for helping the Kevin Harvick Foundation give these kids a brighter future."


The Kevin Harvick Athletic Scholarship exists to enable collegiate student athletes to pursue an undergraduate degree while participating in athletics.  It was first awarded to a California State University-Bakersfield (CSU-B) student athlete in 2010 as part of Harvick's effort to give back to his hometown community with a 12-year commitment to CSU-B. The Kevin Harvick Foundation also established a similar initiative at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. 



Daryl Harr will return to the cockpit of the iWorld Connect Chevrolet for Saturday’s ServiceMaster 200 Nationwide Series race at Phoenix International Raceway.

The race will be Harr’s sixth of the Nationwide season. He last drove the JD Motorsports with Gary Keller No. 4 Chevrolet in August at Iowa, finishing 25th.

“It’s good to be back with Johnny’s team and his guys,” Harr said. “Phoenix is a track I really like. It’s fast but sort of a short track, too. I think we can do well there.”

Harr will be sponsored by iWorld Connect (, an Apple premium reseller of computer equipment with four locations in western Canada.

Practice is scheduled at PIR at noon and 3:35 p.m. (ET) Friday. Qualifying is at 12:35 p.m. Saturday, with the race scheduled for 4 p.m.

JD Motorsports PR

Mike Wallace is ready to get the Phoenix ParTea started.

Wallace will ride with sponsorship from Verve! ParTea, the “insanely healthy” energy drink in Saturday’s ServiceMaster 200 Nationwide Series race at Phoenix International Raceway.

ParTea is a non-carbonated energy drink with a bright fruit tea flavor. Verve! is making its second run with Wallace in the JD Motorsports with Gary Keller 01 Chevrolet.

“We’re well-stocked with ParTea and ready to go this week,” Wallace said. “It’s great to have such a fine company – and such a great drink – on board with us again. With so little of the season left, we’re looking to have a big weekend at Phoenix.”

PIR has been a relatively successful track for Wallace, who scored a ninth-place finish at the speedway in 2008.

Practice is scheduled at PIR at noon and 3:35 p.m. (ET) Friday. Qualifying is at 12:35 p.m. Saturday, with the race scheduled for 4 p.m.

After the Phoenix race, the Nationwide season will end Nov. 16 at Homestead, Fla.

JD Motorsports PR

RAB Racing is proud to announce a new partnership with Innovative Green Technologies (IGT), in the ServiceMaster 200 at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) to be held on Saturday, November 9, 2013.


As an Arizona company, IGT is excited about the opportunity to promote their fuelxx™ brand at their hometown NASCAR track, Phoenix International Raceway. The partnership with RAB Racing at PIR was the result of a trial to test the fuelxx™ unit on one of their team's haulers. The results of this field test showed a vast improvement on the team's hauler with fuelxx™ installed over an identical truck traveling the same route, but without fuelxx™ installed. The positive results of these tests led to further communications and, ultimately, the partnership between RAB Racing and IGT. Both IGT and RAB Racing anticipate their partnership being the beginning of a long-term brand alignment with a promising and rewarding future for both.


"We are proud of our relationship with IGT and it's revolutionary fuelxx™ product," said Robby Benton, owner of RAB Racing. "We welcome their enthusiasm for Alex and our team and hope that PIR (Phoenix International Raceway) is just the beginning of a long term partnership and brand alignment. Our first hand experience with fuelxx™ on our transporter made us believers in their product and their company."


A solution for large diesel consumers, fuelxx™, significantly reduces the detrimental environmental impact and the cost of running diesel engines. In initial sales efforts, IGT is targeting large fleets, heavy construction equipment, heavy agricultural equipment, and fixed power generation with a series of carefully selected trials. The credibility of participating at such a level as NASCAR is extremely beneficial for such a small company with a groundbreaking technology.


"We consider it a privilege to associate with Alex Bowman and RAB racing," said Don Hawley, chairman and executive officer of IGT. "We are excited about the future growth paths of RAB Racing and our product fuelxx™ as a revolutionary technology. There is a tremendous crossover for those who love NASCAR and those that can benefit most from our fuel saving and emission reducing product. Thus, we consider this a long-term match made in heaven."


RAB Racing PR

It has been an up and down 2013 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series campaign for veteran David Starr; beginning with a disheartening thirty-first place finish at Daytona in the season opener to a spectacular finish at Talladega resulting in a second place run just a few weeks ago. Friday night’s Lucas Oil 150 at Phoenix will be Starr’s final race of 2013 and he is hoping to finish this season on a high note.

“I’m excited to get back to Phoenix, I didn’t get to run there last year so I haven’t been able to run on the new surface there. I’m looking forward to racing on the new configuration,” Starr said. “We’ve had a lot of success there over the years. The last time I ran at Phoenix I had a great truck and we got caught up in a wreck on a restart.” I can’t wait to get to Phoenix and get our BYF Toyota Tundra back up toward the front.”

NCCER’s Build Your Future (BYF) will support David’s last NCWTS race of the year. “I can’t say enough about Build Your Future as a partner. Everything they stand for away from the racetrack in getting young people involved in a successful career path in the construction industry,” Starr continued. “It’s a big honor for me to be their spokesperson and I’m glad to have a partner that cares about young peoples lives and giving them a great opportunity. In addition to BYF changing young peoples lives, being a partner with SS Green Light Racing and David Starr gives me the opportunity to continue my racing career and I’m just really proud to be the spokesperson for BYF.”

“This is BYF's last race for the season and we feel we have had a good year. We've touched several thousand potential recruits through the Build Your Future initiative this year,” explained BYF Executive Director Diane Greene. “David has been instrumental in our outreach and NASCAR is a great venue for us.”

The Lucas Oil 150 is the 312th consecutive NCWTS start for the SS Green Light Racing team and the 317th career start for Starr in the Truck Series. David has twelve career starts at Phoenix including a victory in the fall race in 2004.

“It will be a fun race, the Truck Series always put on a good show at Phoenix and I’m looking forward having a great race.”

SS Green Light Racing PR

After a promising run was cut short at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway last month, Mason Mingus and Win-Tron Racing plan to seek redemption Friday night at Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway (PIR) in the Lucas Oil 150.

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) may be a new platform for the Mooresville, North Carolina-based team and their teenage driver, but the organization proved at Talladega that they have the components to race competitively on the tour.

Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway, site of the penultimate race on the NCWTS tour, may be new for Mingus, a native of Brentwood, Tennessee, but his team led by 2009 ARCA champion crew chief Mark Rette, finished an impressive 11th last fall at the 1.0-mile oval.

To further continue their driver’s learning curve and adjustment from a 3,400-pound stock car to a 3,400-pound truck, the team recently tested their No. 35 Call 811 Before You Dig / Mark-It! Madness Chevrolet Silverado at Gresham (Ga.) Motorsports Park, where the 18-year old driver feels confident that the testing will pay off in Friday night’s showdown.

“We had the opportunity to test our Phoenix truck at Gresham a few weeks back and I was extremely pleased with what we accomplished,” said Mingus, who finished second in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards championship point standings this season. “We spent the day making changes and I literally could feel and understand the changes. I feel I will reap the benefits from the test at Phoenix.

“This past week, I also had the opportunity to test our Homestead truck at Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway so I have felt a truck on a short track and an intermediate track and I felt very comfortable in the truck at both places. Having that seat time, I fully believe will help my learning curve for sure. I would love to come out of the race this weekend with a top-10.”

Despite his inexperience at PIR, Mingus is no stranger to new tracks, let alone adversity. 

“I take new challenges in stride,” offered Mingus. “I endured that a lot in the ARCA Racing Series this year and we made the best of the situation several times. In fact, some of our best performances came at a track which I had never seen before. I know the competition is a lot stiffer in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, but I think with a lot of hard work, we can flex some muscle and have something to build on for Homestead. If we can claim that top-10 run, we can use the momentum to drop the hammer and go for it in the last race of the year.”

Nate Thiesse, co-car owner at Win-Tron Racing offered his insight on Friday night’s contest.

“We’re looking forward to Phoenix this weekend not only to redeem ourselves from Talladega, but the opportunity for us to showcase the talent of Mason (Mingus),” sounded Thiesse. “The test at Gresham went better than we expected. We feel that Mason will be able to quickly adapt to the track (Phoenix) and deliver us a strong finish to close out the season at Homestead next weekend.”

35 trucks have pre-entered for Friday night’s race for a 36 truck starting field, relieving the stress of the team of having to qualify for the race on speed (qualifications time). 

Mason Mingus has 34 ARCA Racing Series races to his credit. During that tenure, he has acquired five top-fives and 25 top-10 finishes, including second-place runs at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway, Toledo Speedway and Berlin (Mich.) Raceway in August 2013. Additionally, two pole runs at Mobile (Ala.) International Speedway (March 2013) and Iowa Speedway (September 2013), is his best time trials effort to date.

In addition to Phoenix, Mingus and Win-Tron Racing will also compete in the season finale at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway (November 15) next weekend.

Win Tron Racing PR


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