Monday, March 14, 2016

Homecoming for Hamilton Jr., Hamilton Hughes Looks to Rebound At Nashville

When it comes to The Hamilton's in Nashville it is home for them. They raced on the Superspeedway when it was open and heck even won there a few times. Nashville Tennessee is where Bobby Hamilton Jr. is from and is where he will return next month at Fairgrounds Speedway in the #4 Car. Bobby Hamilton Jr. is part owner of the Hamilton-Hughes Racing team that competes in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards. A great group of people who just love to go fast and do you blame them. At Daytona luck was just not in their corner with points
being purchased left and right it left all three of Hamilton's cars sitting on the outside looking in at the Lucas Oil 200 presented by General Tire. Including Bobby who had just missed the cutoff line of making the race. The team returned home to Russellville, KY where the team is based now and began to work as hard as possible on cars for Nashville, a place Bobby is familiar with. Bobby himself has raced at Fairgrounds Speedway 1 time in his ARCA Racing career where he finished 12th in Roger Carter's equipment. As they enter this race redemption is to be made for many teams in the ARCA Racing Series but I feel this one has a chance to pop and could award Bobby Hamilton Jr. his first career win sometime in 2016. I personally look forward to seeing Bobby Hamilton
Jr. and his team succeed not just at Nashville but every track in the ARCA Racing Series Schedule. As time will continue it will reward those who are the hard workers and this team which consists of Bobby, Jay Lopez, and a bunch of other people will be smiling the brightest when something goes well. Like if they landed the car in Victory Lane. With time and a determined race team Trust me it'll happen. (Koelle,2016)

Just An Ordinary Day In Paradise - Drivers' Average Finish At Auto Club

California Speedway or Auto Club Speedway as it is called now has been hosting races since the 1997 Season. It is one of the few tracks that have been around the same time as I have. In recent years it seems that fans have forgotten about the old Auto Club that would be commonly noted as the boringest track on the circuit. The last few years we have seen last lap passes, last lap dramas, and a crash that injured Denny Hamlin. This track used to Host a night race along with a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series but now the Trucks don't and the lights are only used if needed after rain. Below are the Average finishes in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series since February of 2014. It only lists drivers who are entered in this weekend's NSCS Race. Based off of All Drivers.

Average Finishes (Since 2014)

Kyle Busch who has the best average finish won his first career race here
in 2005.
1 Kyle Busch
2 Kurt Busch
3 Paul Menard
4 Brian Vickers
5 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
8 Carl Edwards
9 Ryan Newman
10 Brad Keselowski
11 Jamie McMurray
12 Austin Dillon
13 Kyle Larson
14 Martin Truex Jr.
15 Jimmie Johnson
16 Danica Patrick
17 Matt Kenseth
Brian Vickers returns to the #14 this weekend in his return to
 Auto Club Speedway
18 Kevin Harvick
19 Casey Mears
21 Chris Buescher
22 A.J. Allmendinger
23 Cole Whitt
26 David Ragan
27 Clint Bowyer
28 Joey Logano
29 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
30 Landon Cassill
31 Aric Almirola
33 Denny Hamlin
34 Michael Annett
35 Kasey Kahne
37 Trevor Bayne
41 Brian Scott
44 Greg Biffle
46 Josh Wise
52 Matt DiBenedetto

Notable First Timers or Returns

Returns and Last Race Here

Regan Smith - 2012
Michael McDowell - 2013
Brian Vickers - 2014
Denny Hamlin - 2014
Kyle Busch - 2014

Making Debut at Auto Club (First Race Ever there)

Ryan Blaney
Jeffrey Earnhardt
Chase Elliott

Matt DiBenedetto Showing Consistency, Finishes 20th At Phoenix

So far in 2016 Matt DiBenedetto has been showing improvements from 2015 which is not really a surprise coming from the 2015 Rookie Of The Year Runner up.
Matt Started the Daytona 500 in a car that was not locked in to the race but in Qualifying Matt was just a hair quicker than Michael McDowell to lock himself into the Daytona 500. Thankful to Matt finishing highest in his duel his Daytona teammate Robert Richardson Jr. made the Daytona 500 for a third time. A vicious crash was the end result for Matt as he crashed with 2016 Rookie Of The Year Contender Chris Buescher.  Both Matt and Chris would walk away from the crash but DiBenedetto would take up the 40th finishing position.
The following weekend in Atlanta DiBenedetto had a new sponsor on board the #83 in his return to the #83. Sewanee : The University of the South would jump on board. In that race Matt started 35th but pushed his way through the field to finish 29th. Matt's first visit in the NSCS car at Atlanta and Daytona were successful in a few ways despite the crash at Daytona but now DiBenedetto would head to the last track he had not ran at in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Would Luck be on DiBenedetto's side in his first race at Las Vegas in the Cup Series?
As the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series began the West Coast Swing DiBenedetto would look to conquer Las Vegas and lay all the chips on the table. In his first start at Las Vegas, DiBenedetto finished 31st which for a first time is impressive. Now DiBenedetto would head to familliar territory as he made his NSCS Debut at Phoenix in 2015.
As Matt DiBenedetto and his teammate David Ragan entered the Phoenix International Raceway speed was there DiBenedetto made his way to qualify a season best 23rd. During the race DiBenedetto would conserve and bring home the #83 Toyota Camry in the 20th place! His second best finish and his best since Talladega in May of 2015 where he finished 18th.
Despite not having the excellent finishes the team stays consistent and consistency wins championships.(Koelle,2016)

Stats are Just Numbers - Auto Club Speedway Edition

When it comes to the Auto Club Speedway in California numbers are just numbers when it comes to certain series at the track. It is one of the two times that NASCAR comes to California and well both are some of the most exciting racing around with the other being Sonoma. California formally hosted two NSCS races along with an NCWTS race but that was in the past. Now NASCAR visits the Auto Club Speedway once a year and that is the final race of the West Coast Swing before a much needed off weekend. NASCAR will return at Martinsville but we are just now getting through Phoenix. Will we see an exciting finish like we have in past years? Only time will tell.

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Auto Club

Races - 19
First Winner - Jeff Gordon
Most Recent Winner - Brad Keselowski
G.W.C Finishes - 3 (2006, 2014, and 2015)
Postponed Races - 1 (2008) Shortened in 2012
Most Wins - Tie, 3 (Jeff Gordon and Matt Kenseth)
Most Wins by a Team - 7 (Roush Fenway Racing)
Most Manufacturer Wins -10 (Ford)
First Race - June 22, 1997  
Interesting Fact - In 2002 There were ten drivers who failed to finish the race; with five of the drivers forcing to leave the race due to terminal crashes while five other drivers had engine issues. Nearly 10% of the 199-minute race was held under a caution flag and the average green flag run was approximately 38 laps. Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s unfortunate accident forced NASCAR to pass a regulation forcing drivers to take the ambulance ride to the infield care center every time they crashed; he did not admit to have this injury until mid-September. At the end, Jimmie Johnson holds off Kurt Busch to score his first career win.

NASCAR Xfinity Series at Auto Club Speedway

Races - 19
First Winner - Todd Bodine
Last Winner - Kevin Harvick
G.W.C Finishes - 1 (2010)
Postponed Races - In 2008 Race postponed from Saturday night to Monday afternoon due to rain.
Most Wins - Tie, 4 (Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth) 
Most Wins by a Team - Toyota (6) 
Most Manufacturer Wins - Toyota (6)
Interesting Fact - 1 of 2 race wins for Hank Parker Jr. Hank also won Pikes Peak!