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|Inside Info on RyansRacecar.com|
Pit PerspectivesIn June, I covered Jeff Gordon's pit stall, and I've never ever heard him talk about a racecar the way he did that day. It didn't matter what they tried to do, Gordon was frustrated and admitted after the race that they stunk, finishing 32nd. I can specifically remember Gordon telling crew chief Robbie Loomis, "I'm running this car half-throttle through the corners, and I'm still almost wrecking it." On Trackside last Friday night, Gordon said the No. 24 team went back and tested at Michigan which tells me everything I need to know. Like Stewart's strong run after a test earlier this year, the No. 24 team should be ready to race up front this weekend. Gordon's numbers 14 top fives, two wins and four poles are great, but he said those results don't give him an advantage. The fact that he went back and tested speaks volumes about how much they think that they need to improve.
|Speed Mail Steve|
Finish LineI'm really interested to see how Roush Racing's announcement of Kurt Busch's decision to leave the organization affects his race team. Busch had problems at The Glen, but it was a mechanical problem, not a performance letdown. Right now, Busch and Roush all saying the right things, but as Jeff Gordon said last week on Trackside if a guy isn't happy where he is, he needs to go. With Busch and Jamie McMurray negotiating contracts for 2007, it will change the sport, and the way contracts are done forever. In the NFL, this practice referred to as tampering is banned. It's almost naive to look at on-track performance, great pit stops, horsepower and fuel mileage and not figure the human element of racing into the equation. Look at the Eagles with Terrell Owens. The Philadelphia Inquirer polled fans who said that they wanted T.O. gone by a 2 to 1 margin. As great as he is, he's become a distraction to his team right now. To win a championship in any sport, teams must minimize distractions and follow the same routine so the big question for teams with drivers that aren't coming back is can they keep distractions to a minimum? We'll have to wait and see.
NASCAR on FOX and SPEED Channel host and reporter Steve Byrnes has covered racing for more than 20 years, and he gives kids a close look at a real stock car and its driver with Ryan's Racecar, a 30-minute video/DVD. For more information, go to RyansRacecar.com