On this date in NASCAR history: April 20, 1901

On this date in NASCAR history, April 20, 1901, Mark Martin was born. Martin, who took the pole and won the Phoenix Subway Fresh Fit 500 on Saturday, remembers being excited about seeing the first Model T in 1908. Said Martin, "I remember thinking, wouldn't it be great if you could go 200 mph in one of those deals? And what if it was covered with stickers?"Congratulations to Martin, who is one of our favorite drivers and a total class act. He has come a long way since... ...

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D’Hondt: The Emperor Has No Clothes

NASCAR fans are notoriously brutal on drivers they don't like. Just ask Jeff Gordon. Some fans have been no less brutal on Dale Earnhardt Jr., a driver who is starting to engender equal parts love and loathing. And while fans are expected to criticize, it's another thing entirely for a member of the fraternity to do so.Eddie D'Hondt is a member of the fraternity. Involved at the sport's highest level since the mid-1990s, he has been GM of  high-profile outfits lik ...

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Mr. Ashley Judd Discusses His Failed NASCAR Experiment

By any standard, professional athletes need to have an almost blind-faith in their abilities. The other guy wasn't necessarily better, I just had an off day. Really, it's understandable -- one doesn't reach the highest levels of any field without complete confidence. However, as Dario Franchitti proves, there's a difference between belief and delusion.In story in the Long Beach Press-Telegram discussing his return to open-wheel racing and the IRL, Franchitti explains his 2008 NASCAR flame ...

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Larry McReynolds Goes Off Message

Credit to Larry McReynolds and FOXSports.com for giving the popular, well-known broadcaster the license to criticize NASCAR. Even more credit to Larry Mac for not only suggesting that all is not well in NASCAR-land but that the sanctioning body would do well to heed the fans' unhappiness.Turning now to other news making headlines -- hell just froze over. ...

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Bubba the Love Sponge: Safe for the Whole Family?

Situational ethics are a beautiful thing. Used effectively, they can justify seemingly any inconsistent action and make the actor feel okay about himself in the process. Take Talladega's decision, with NASCAR's approval, to name Bubba the Love Sponge grand marshall for the Aaron's 312 Nationwide Series race.Talk to me all you want about how Mr. Clem is a huge NASCAR fan and a race-team owner. I don't particularly care. The guy is something of a boor, a man who has sometimes been ...

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NASCAR Moves Its Modified Series Banquets To N.C.

Overshadowed by the news that NASCAR is on the verge of moving its year-end banquet from New York City to Las Vegas, the governing body also announced that it would be hosting a single, year-end banquet for its satellite serieses in North Carolina (instead of holding individual banquets for each). That's not the only piece of information that escaped people's attention. Apparently, NASCAR will withhold prize money from teams that don't attend said celebration. As surprising as that bit of ...

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Bloomberg Hates NASCAR, Its Fans, And Puppies

According to a story at BleacherReport.com, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a card-carrying Republican at least theoretically predisposed to liking the sport, ripped NASCAR, insulted its fans, and generally heaped scorn on America's fastest sport, saying he's glad the year-end banquet will be held in cheesy Las Vegas.Say what now? The story was a joke? You mean, like, a hoax? Not intended to be taken seriously? Oh, like the Car and Driver story? Like that one? It's different, you s ...

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Phoenix Might Separate Pretender From Contender

Saturday night's race at Phoenix International Raceway will be an excellent indicator of the relative championship hopes of Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson. Johnson is the known quantity in this dynamic. He has finished third, first, and second in his last three races to climb from 13th to second in the standings, fairly solid proof that he and the No. 48 team are engineering their usual early-season push to the top. More worrisome to the immediate aspirations of other championship contend ...

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Sponsor This Team or the Dog Gets It!

Though not quite in the same league as National Lampoon's infamous 1973 "If you don't buy this magazine, we'll kill this dog" cover plea, there's something equally ... desperate about a NASCAR Sprint Cup series team attempting to auction off a one-race sponsorship on eBay.According to the announcement on the site, the winning bidder would "partner with an established team currently in the top 35 of NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series, which guarantees a spot in the event.& ...

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Welcome back, Jimmy Watts!

Four weeks ago, in the immediate aftermath of Atlanta and an unfortunate, momentary lapse of reason, Jimmy Watts was used and abused, highlighted, pilloried, and then, unceremoniously left by the side of the road, a carcass, a shell, a sad casualty of a modern, unfeeling media. Not really -- but you know how we in the media love us some hyperbole! And, in truth, Watts did enjoy a few depressing moments of largely unwanted fame for chasing that tire at Atlanta. Well, his four-week suspensi ...

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