Every once in a while you have a slow news day when you're covering NASCAR racing. Friday was not one of those days.
There's something about this race track in Richmond. Every time we come here, all heck breaks loose.
Maybe it's just the time of the year. In early May, the season has been going long enough for stuff to start shaking out. In late September, we're about to start the Chase and some teams are starting to turn the page on next year.
But it's strange. When they announced the settlement of the Texas lawsuit that led to "modernizing tradition" with changes to the schedule, that was announced here.
When they announced they were going to put restrictor plates on cars for a race at New Hampshire, that came out here. Dale Earnhardt held court about that in his hauler that day for more than an hour, but only about 10 minutes worth of what he said was printable.
Early Friday morning, DEI confirmed what everybody had been zeroed in on in saying that Mark Martin and Aric Almirola will drive the No. 8 and Regan Smith will get into what's now the No. 01.
A little while later, we noticed people scurrying about around the No. 31 Chevrolet. AT&T logos were being brought back out and slapped on the car. Something was afoot, and we later learned there had been a settlement in that legal battle involving NASCAR and Sprint Nextel along with AT&T and Richard Childress Racing.
Oh yeah, it looks like Dario Franchitti is coming to NASCAR to replace David Stremme at United Nations Racing...er...Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. That's big - Ashley Judd in the Cup garage!
Jimmie Johnson won the pole for Saturday night's race and hardly anybody noticed. But as everybody tried to wind up their day, an e-mail blast announced that Robert Yates is retiring, selling his team to his son, Doug, canceling the announced partnership with
Newman/Haas/Lanigan and naming Travis Kvapil to replace Ricky Rudd in the No. 88 next year.
Other than that, as an old friend of mine once said, ain't much happening.
Friday, September 07, 2007