Monster Energy Cup Series News

Monster Energy Cup Series News (13236)

Code 3 Associates is expanding its partnership with Stewart-Haas Racing. The 501(c)(3) non-profit organization specializing in animal rescue and recovery in disaster areas will feature its collaboration with the One Cure initiative for three races on the No. 10 Ford Fusion driven by Danica Patrick in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series while also adding a fourth race specific to Code 3 Associates.

One Cure is a project led by the Colorado State University Flint Animal Cancer Center (FACC) where innovative cancer treatments for pets are being researched in clinical trials to benefit people. The FACC sees more than 1,500 new animal cancer patients every year, with approximately 400 patients enrolling in these carefully monitored clinical trials specific to their cancer type. These canine and feline patients are helping pioneer cancer research, moving cutting-edge treatments out of the laboratory and into clinical practice, ultimately providing hope to the next generation of animal and human cancer patients.

To create awareness of the FACC and its groundbreaking work in comparative oncology, Code 3 Associates is using its established partnership with Stewart-Haas Racing and Patrick at the upcoming Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races May 13 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, May 20 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway’s Monster Energy Open and Aug. 19 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway. Additionally, Code 3 Associates will serve as the primary sponsor of Patrick and the No. 10 team for the June 25 event at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway.

“We need a new way to find potential cures for cancer, and pets may provide the answer,” said Dr. Rodney Page, director of the FACC. “Cancer is cancer, so what is learned in pets being treated for cancer holds promise to benefit people and vice versa. This approach is known as comparative or translational oncology, and it is the core of the One Cure concept. This partnership helps educate more people about comparative oncology and improves the lives of all cancer patients, whether they have two legs or four.”

“Code 3 Associates has championed animal welfare for more than 25 years, and One Cure allows us to take what’s learned from treating animals that are fighting cancer to people who are fighting the same battle,” added Nan Stuart, founder, Code 3 Associates. “Danica and Stewart-Haas Racing have been strong advocates for animal welfare and this extension of our partnership with them helps more people understand and appreciate One Cure’s mission.”

Patrick has always been an animal lover, and her fondness for animals became actionable as her racing career grew.

“I’ve given to all sorts of animal charities through the years, but One Cure is different. The purpose of One Cure is a game changer in finding a potential cure for cancer,” Patrick said. “Our pets are members of our families, and when they aren’t well, we want to do everything we can to help. Cancer has touched so many of us. Knowing we can use what we learn from keeping our animals healthy to potentially help save human lives is a cause I’m honored to support.”

To learn more about One Cure, please visit


For the first time, the NASCAR Silver Bullet Bash presented by Coors Light will take center stage in Charlotte on Thursday, May 18. Celebrating the first half of the NASCAR season, the Silver Bullet Bash will lead off the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series All-Star weekend festivities with live music, special guests and unique experiences.   

As part of this year’s event, Maren Morris, who recently won New Female Vocalist of the Year at the Academy of Country Music Awards, will rock the crowd with a headline performance at the legendary Fillmore Charlotte.

The Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter will take the stage for a special performance playing hit songs like “My Church” and “80s Mercedes” along with others from her new album HERO.

The NASCAR Silver Bullet Bash Presented by Coors Light has traditionally taken place during Champion’s Week in Las Vegas as a private invite-only event. This year’s bash marks the first time that NASCAR and Coors Light will open the doors to fans.

Beginning today, a limited number of fans 21-and-older can receive passes to this exclusive event by attending participating Charlotte area bars and restaurants that serve Coors Light, the Official Beer of NASCAR.

“The NASCAR Silver Bullet Bash was specifically designed for Coors Light to connect and engage with our fans at participating bars and restaurants in the weeks leading up to the event,” said Lou Garate, vice president, partnership marketing, NASCAR. “This year’s event will build excitement and set the stage for the Monster Energy All-Star weekend festivities taking place in Charlotte.”

Two of NASCAR’s young, up-and-coming drivers, Ryan Blaney and Ricky Stenhouse Jr., will attend the NASCAR Silver Bullet Bash and engage with some lucky fans. Both drivers will be actively promoting the event and encouraging fans to visit participating venues for a chance to attend the event.

Fans are encouraged to visit the following venues for a chance to claim one of the limited number of passes available to attend the event:

  • Sports Page Food & Spirits: 8400 Bellhaven Blvd # H, Charlotte, NC 28216
  • Bourbon N Burgers: 2200 Park Rd, Charlotte, NC 28203
  • Leo’s 49 Sports Bar: 7801 University Center Blvd., Charlotte, NC 28277
  • Fitzgerald’s Irish Pub: 201 E 5th St, Charlotte, NC 28202


Over the years, the Wood Brothers race team has set records, many of which still stand, at NASCAR tracks across America.
Richmond International Raceway, where Ryan Blaney and the No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane team will race this weekend, is one of those tracks, although the team’s record at Richmond isn’t exactly a power house stat.
The team, and former driver Kyle Petty, hold the track’s record for the fewest laps led by a race winner – four laps on Feb. 23, 1986.
The finish of that Miller High Life 400 remains one of the more popular features on the highlight reels from Richmond.
In that race, Petty had run in or near the top five most of the afternoon, and led Lap 273, but was about a straightaway behind the race leaders with three laps to go. On that fateful lap, Darrell Waltrip appeared to have completed a race-long comeback from being a lap down as he drove past Dale Earnhardt into the lead going down the backstretch. Earnhardt, who had several earlier encounters with Waltrip, responded by wrecking Waltrip in Turn Three, setting off an chain-reaction wreck that also collected Joe Ruttman and Geoff Bodine.
Petty slowed as the track was blocked in front of him, then stepped on the gas, drove by the disabled car of Ruttmann and beat him to the caution flag. That lap and the next two were run under the caution flag, and Petty had his first career Cup victory.
For Eddie Wood, now a co-owner of the team, it was a magical moment as the victory was the result of a pairing of talent from both the Petty and Wood families, which had been both competitors and friends for years.
 As Wood looks back over his racing career, he remembers his team’s time with Petty, then 25 years old, as one of the high points.
“The most enjoyable time of my career was when Kyle was driving our car,” Wood said. “We had the magic.”
Wood said another youngster, the 23-year-old Blaney, is bringing back some of that youthful enthusiasm his family-owned team experienced decades ago with Petty.  But like those days years ago, there’s the challenge of getting a young team prepared to compete for wins on a tough Cup circuit.
Crew chief Jeremy Bullins, who like Blaney is in his sophomore year in NASCAR’s elite series, said that while the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Fusion has been fast nearly every week, there are still places where there’s room for improvement. Richmond International Raceway is one of those places, as evidenced by the team’s finishes of 28th and 39th there last year.
“I'm very proud of the fact that our Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusions have been fast a lot,” Bullins said. “I'll be the first to admit however that we haven't quite gotten Richmond figured out.
“But I'm really looking forward to that challenge this weekend. I didn't feel like we figured out what we needed there last season, but I think if you look at the gains we've made at places like Martinsville and the strong runs we’ve had at places like Phoenix, that we can put our heads together and come up with a solution.
“To be the caliber team we want to be we have to be good everywhere, and the group is working hard to make that happen.” 
Qualifying at Richmond is set for Friday at 4:45 p.m. Eastern Time, and Sunday’s 400-lap, 300-mile race is set to get the green flag just after 2 p.m. with TV coverage on FOX.


When looking at the tracks where Kyle Busch excels in Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series competition, there are many ways to size up the situation. After all, Busch has won at all but two of the 23 tracks that comprise NASCAR’s top series.

Among all those wins at all those tracks, one stop on the circuit seems to be a cut above the rest for the M&M’S driver when looking at the overalls statistics – Richmond (Va.) International Raceway, site of Sunday’s Toyota Owners 400.

A quick look at the stat sheet at Richmond for Busch, driver of the No. 18 M&M’S Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR), can easily make the case he is most consistent at the .75-mile short track in Virginia’s capital city. Along with four series wins there, Busch has amassed 15 top-five finishes and 17 top-10s in 23 career starts at Richmond.

Additionally, the Las Vegas native has an average finishing position of 7.0 at Richmond, tops among active drivers. Next best is Kevin Harvick, whose average finish there is 8.2. Busch has completed all but one of the 9,223 laps available to him in his 23 Richmond starts. Of those laps completed, Busch has run in the top-15 for 8,139 laps, or 88.2 percent, which is second-most among active drivers.

Sunday afternoon, Busch and the M&M’S team look to get back to victory lane, where Busch ended up after four consecutive spring-race wins from 2009 to 2012, besting Richard Petty’s previous record of three Richmond spring-race wins in a row from 1971 to 1973. Last April, Busch almost brought home his fifth Richmond win, but teammate Carl Edwards bumped and slipped past the defending Cup Series champion on the last lap. With those impressive statistics and records to back him up, it’s little wonder that a visit to the “Capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia” is one of Busch’s favorite stops on the NASCAR tour.

So, as the series heads back to Richmond for the first time this season, Busch and the M&M’S team look to bring home their fifth career win there. Whether or not they make it back to victory lane, history has shown they’ll be anything but average, and they’ll be the driver and team everyone will be on the lookout for. 


Continuing their partnership with Erik Jones, GameStop is taking the leap to NASCAR Cup Series competition sponsoring Jones for two races this season on the No. 77 Toyota Camry with Furniture Row Racing. GameStop kicks off their Cup Series venture this weekend at Richmond International Raceway and again at Pocono Raceway on June 11, 2017.

“GameStop has been a great partner for me and one of the first sponsors to come on board with me when I started running in the XFINITY Series,” said Jones. “It’s really cool to see them grow and move up to the Cup Series with me on the 77 team. We’ve gotten several wins together in the XFINITY Series, including one a few weeks ago at Texas. I’m excited to represent GameStop and their partners in the Cup Series and look forward to having the same success we’ve seen together over the last few years.”

Since partnering with Jones in 2015, GameStop has been present for several career milestones for Jones in the NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS). In 2015 at Auto Club Speedway, Jones scored his first-career NXS pole before finishing third the in the race. The following week at Texas Motor Speedway, Jones earned the pole and his first-career NXS victory. Since joining the XFINITY series, Jones has taken GameStop to victory lane three times and while carrying the GameStop brands, has earned seven poles, 15 top-five finishes and 17 top-10 finishes.


Ford Motor Company, Motorcraft/Quick Lane Racing and JDRF are the proud sponsors of a t-shirt design contest aiming to harness the creativity and engagement of families, JDRF fundraising teams and race fans alike to benefit JDRF’s shared vision of a world without type 1 diabetes (T1D)). This fundraising design contest entitled T1D, Motorcraft & Me presents Customize for a Cause offers participants a chance to win a VIP Motorcraft Racing Experience of a Lifetime and much more.

Families, organizations, individuals and race fans are invited to design their own unique JDRF-themed apparel at and promote their exclusive creations to family, friends and colleagues through their dedicated TeamStore webpage. A minimum donation of $10 from each custom apparel sale will go directly to JDRF to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications.

Any individual that generates $250 or more in T1D, Motorcraft & Me customized apparel sales between now and July 31, 2017 will automatically be entered for a chance to win a VIP Motorcraft Racing Experience of a Lifetime during NASCAR’s Ford Championship Weekend in Miami, Florida in November 2017. The winning design – which will be selected by a panel comprised of representatives from Motorcraft/Quick Lane Racing and JDRF – also will be prominently displayed as a decal on the iconic No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion; driven by up-and-coming NASCAR star Ryan Blaney. In addition, the winning design will be utilized as the “official” T1D, Motorcraft & Me shirt for 2017.

Interested contest participants can follow the quick-and-easy steps on the TeamStore website to create their masterpiece ( Once their design has been approved, contestants are encouraged to share their unique TeamStore webpage link with friends, family and colleagues so they can support a cure by purchasing their customized apparel.

On Aug. 1, 2017, a panel comprised of members from Motorcraft/Quick Lane Racing and JDRF, will select one winner for “Best Design 2017” and the victor will be awarded a VIP Motorcraft Racing Experience of a Lifetime.

“Customize for a Cause is an excellent opportunity for anyone to express their creativity and help JDRF raise funds towards finding a cure for type 1 diabetes with their inspired designs,” said Brett Wheatley, executive director of North America, Ford Customer Service Division. “The winner will get exclusive access to what goes on at the race track during NASCAR’s most important weekend of the season – Ford Championship Weekend.”

The VIP Motorcraft Racing Experience of a Lifetime grand prize includes:

  • Round-trip airfare for the winner and three (3) guests to Miami, Fla.

  • Three nights’ hotel accommodations

  • Honorary pit crew status for an exclusive opportunity to meet driver Ryan Blaney and serve as honorary pit crew members for the No. 21 race car and the legendary Wood Brothers Racing Team

  • Series finale tickets to the Ford EcoBoost 400 on Nov. 19, 2017 which will decide the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion

  • A Visa gift card for meals and car rental

  • Motorcraft autograph and apparel package

  • The winning design will also be prominently featured on the race car during the 2017 NASCAR Championship Race. The winning shirt design will also be utilized as the "official" T1D, Motorcraft & Me shirt for 2017 and will be available for purchase through November 2017.

    Ford Motor Company’s relationship with JDRF spans three decades. In 2008, Motorcraft and Quick Lane Tire and Auto Centers joined efforts and has since raised more than $400,000 for JDRF, the leading global organization funding T1D research.

Ford Performance PR

Looking back at the history of Richmond (Va.) International Raceway, members of the Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) organization have left their mark over the years.


SHR co-owner Tony Stewart scored his first career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory at the .75-mile oval in September 1999 and has three career wins at the track.


Kevin Harvick first found his way to victory lane at Richmond in the September 2006 NASCAR Cup Series race and has since earned two additional wins there.


Kurt Busch scored his first NASCAR Cup Series win at Richmond in September 2005 and won his second there in April 2015.


Clint Bowyer first won at Richmond in the NASCAR Cup Series ranks in May 2008 and made a return trip to victory lane at the track in April 2012.


While Stewart, Harvick, Busch and Bowyer have made their respective marks in the NASCAR Cup Series, Danica Patrick’s success at Richmond thus far has come in the open-wheel ranks.


The IndyCar Series competed at Richmond from 2001 to 2009, and Patrick competed in five of those events. She finished sixth in 2007 and 2008, then scored a fifth-place result in 2009.


Patrick, driver of the No. 10 Code 3 Associates Ford Fusion for SHR, will make her ninth trip to Richmond in the NASCAR Cup Series for Sunday’s Richmond 400. In the September 2016 NASCAR Cup Series race at the .75-mile oval, she started 29th and scored her best-ever finish at the track – a 15th-place effort.


When Patrick returns to the track this weekend, her No. 10 Ford will carry the colors of Code 3 Associates, a 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to providing professional animal disaster response and resources to communities, as well as administering professional training to individuals and agencies involved in animal-related law enforcement and emergency response. Its mission is accomplished through hands-on animal rescue and care operations during disaster events in the United States and Canada, and through certified animal welfare training seminars, which include animal cruelty training for investigators.


Patrick enters Richmond looking to turn things around and get back to scoring top-20 results. While she knows her IndyCar experience at Richmond won’t assist her this weekend, Patrick and her No. 10 Code 3 Associates Ford team will be leaning on the knowledge of their SHR teammates in an effort to find NASCAR Cup Series success there.



D.J. Kennington and Gaunt Brothers Racing will reunite for the upcoming Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, May 7.

In February, Kennington, a native of St. Thomas, Ontario, became the first Canadian since Trevor Boys in 1988 to compete in the Daytona 500. He started 28th in GBR's No. 96 Toyota Camry before recording a 36th-place finish due to his involvement in a multi-car crash in the second half of the event.

Kennington finished 14th in his Can-Am Duel qualifying race, earning the first Cup Series start for GBR and owner Marty Gaunt.

Additionally, veteran crew chief Mike Ford has joined GBR. Ford, whose record includes 25 victories in points-paying races and non-points exhibitions at the Cup Series level, previously worked with Bill Elliott Racing, Robert Yates Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing.

"We're thrilled to bring D.J. back into the fold for Talladega," said Gaunt. "He did everything asked of him in February. With the addition of Mike Ford, we hope to build on what we accomplished in Daytona."

Kennington, a 19-time race winner in what is now the NASCAR Pinty's Series, has made just two career starts, including his run in the Daytona 500; however, he believes he received an education in driving on restrictor plate tracks during February's Speedweeks.

"Talladega weekend can't get here fast enough," said Kennington. "I learned a lot during our Duel race and in the 500. I felt like I was finally getting the hang of drafting before the accident took us out. The car was great in the draft and I know we can apply a lot of what we learned at Daytona to Talladega."

The remaining events for GBR in 2017, for which the driver will be announced at a later date, include Daytona on Saturday, July 1 and Talladega on Sunday, Oct. 15.


Ragan on Richmond

"It’s awesome that Richmond went out on their own and said, ‘We’re going to have a day race and a night race.’ The cars don’t drive as good, you can move around more, and the tires wear out more any time the sun’s out and it’s hotter.

"The downforce changes do have an effect at short tracks. You see it in your lap times and how you get on the throttle and the amount of brake that you’re using. Last year, the racing at Richmond was great. You could move around and use multiple lanes, and I think that’s neat for racers to race and for fans to watch. We've run well there in the past, and I think we can have another great race in our Camping World/Good Sam Ford this weekend."


Cassill on Richmond

"We practice, qualify and race all at different times at Richmond. So, you use experience to guide your adjustments and what you choose to do with your car. That track tends to be really fast when the sun goes down and really slick when the sun’s out. When we race there at night later in the year, the track frees up, but it has a lot more grip and it’s faster. But the tire falloff at Richmond during the day is a lot of fun.

"We've got The Pete Store on our No. 34 Fusion this week at Richmond. They're an important partner of ours -- our race haulers are pulled by Peterbilt trucks -- and they've got a couple stores in Virginia, one right in Richmond. It's always good to have them at the track with us."

Meet Landon
Sunday, April 30, 10:20am - Ford Performance display (Richmond International Raceway Fan Zone)


It was a tale of two days for Roush Fenway’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup and NASCAR Xfinity Series teams this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway.


The Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 from Bristol Motor Speedway was not the best race in 2017 for Roush Fenway Racing’s Ryan Reed and Darrell Wallace Jr.


In qualifying early Saturday Morning, Reed qualified 24th and Wallace Jr. qualified 14th. However, both drivers had to start in the rear of the field. In pre-race technical inspection, NASCAR found an unapproved splitter mount on both the cars.


For Reed, the first stage of the race was his last. After dropping to the rear of the field to serve his penalty, he began to make strides towards the front. Due to a tight handling race car in the early stages, Reed was put a lapped down by the leaders. Reed never had the chance to make a pit stop to fix the issue.


Reed’s day ended on lap 79 of the 300 lap event. The right front tire blew sending Reed into the wall. Reed also suffered a sprain to his wrist as he did not let go of the steering wheel in time before contact was made. Reed and his team deemed the car as unrepairable to finish 38th


“It was a tough day altogether, starting in the back,” said Reed.  “The balance wasn’t very good and we went a lap down early.  We were trying to fight through it, but had a tire go down and that ended our day.  We’ll move on.  We’ll go to Richmond, which is one of my favorite tracks, and rebound.  The good thing about getting a win at Daytona is that buys you some insurance in case you have some days like this, so we’ll rebound.  I’m really proud of everyone on the Lilly Diabetes Ford Mustang.  It’s a tough group mentally and physically, so we’ll persevere.”


After getting out of the car, Reed though his wrist was fractured. However, He went to social media to confirm it was just a sprain.



For Wallace Jr., his day ended with 40 laps remaining ending his streak of five consecutive sixth place finishes.


In the first stage, Wallace Jr. worked his way towards the top-15 after starting from the rear. He improved over 20 positions in the stage, but went a lap down to the leaders due to a long green flag run. Wallace finished 15th in the first stage.


The second stage saw Wallace Jr. fighting to get his lap back that he lost in the first stage. Wallace Jr. battled Matt Tifft for that free pass position through much of the second and third stage.  However, an accident on lap 259 that damaged the left rear of the car regulated Wallace Jr. to a 33rd place finish, tying his worst finish of the season at Daytona.


“It’s just an unfortunate day,” said Wallace. “I was just fighting hard for the lucky dog.  We were put in the back for some circumstances we’ve got to get straightened out, but we were trying to make the most of it. We were fast.  We were so fast there with our Leidos Mustang. It’s just unfortunate. We were clawing ourselves out of that lap-down spot and just ran out of time and ran out of luck.


The Food City 500 provided Roush Fenway’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers, Trevor Bayne and Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., with the best luck of the weekend for the organization. Both drivers ran up front most of the day and ended up with top-11 finishes.


Bayne started in the 12th position due to qualifying being cancelled on Friday. Bayne maintained a top-20 position throughout much of the first stage. As the track rubbered up, Bayne began to experience a tight handling race car towards the end of the stage. Bayne finished the stage in the 15th position.


The second stage Bayne continued to work on his handling working his way up into the top-10. Bayne held off Stenhouse Jr. towards the conclusion to score two points by finishing in the ninth position.


The third stage saw Bayne going from tight conditions in the middle of the corners and loose on corner entry. Bayne was on and off in the top-10. Using the top lane, Bayne gained track position to finish in the 11th position to score his sixth top-15 finish of 2017.


Just like Bayne, Stenhouse Jr. ran up front throughout much of the race and scored a ninth place finish.


Stenhouse was almost going to a backup car after contact with the wall in the only practice session on Friday, but the team repaired the car to full glory for the race.


Stenhouse held onto a position in the top-20 throughout much of the first stage. while battling a loose car. Once the loose condition was treated, Stenhouse marched his way to the front of the field. Stenhouse worked his way towards the top-10 at the conclusion of the second stage.


Stenhouse used the high lane to work his way up to seventh, but ultimately ended up in the ninth position in the Food City 500.