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NASCAR Daily News Headlines * January 15, 2010
Rear Spoiler In NASCAR's FutureNASCAR informed teams Friday that it has scheduled an open test at Charlotte Motor Speedway as part of an upcoming transition from a front wing to a rear spoiler. The change had been discussed individually with teams, but nothing had been formally announced before the Friday memo to crew chiefs from Sprint Cup Series director John Darby.
"To help put some of the rumor mills to rest, I am sending you the following facts as they relate to changes for 2010," Darby wrote in the memo, a copy of which was obtained by ESPN.com. "We will be transitioning from the usage of the current wing to an aluminum spoiler."
NASCAR will hold an informational meeting for teams in mid-March, and the spoiler will be tested March 23-24 at CMS. No race has been selected for the spoiler debut, but the March 28 event at Martinsville is the earliest the change could be implemented based on the timeline outlined by Darby. The season opens Feb. 14 with the Daytona 500, and Martinsville is the sixth race on the schedule.(espn.go.com)
Roush Fan Of The Year Voting StartsVoting has begun to determine Roush Fenway Racing’s new Fan of the Year. Starting today, Friday, January 15, 2010, fans can go to (www.RoushFenway.com), log-in to the fan club and vote for their favorite fan from the batch of weekly finalists who were selected throughout the year by a panel of judges elected by Roush Fenway Racing. Fans must join the free online fan club before they can submit their vote and may vote as many times per day as they’d like until Friday, January 22, 2010 at 11:59 pm ET.
Once the voting ends, the winner will be announced on (www.RoushFenway.com) on Monday, January 25, 2010. Fan club member online votes will be the only determining factor in the selection of the winner.
The 2009 Roush Fenway Racing Fan of the Year will be the team’s VIP guest at the 2010 Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Sunday, May 30, 2010. Schedule and details will be provided to the winning fan at a later date.
The winner will also receive apparel and merchandise designating them as the 2009 Roush Fenway Racing Fan of the Year. She/he will also be recognized in a display at the Roush Fenway Racing museum in Concord, North Carolina and will be featured on (www.RoushFenway.com) in a designated 2009 Fan of the Year area. The 2009 Roush Fenway Racing Fan of the Year will serve as an “unofficial spokesperson” of the Roush Fenway Racing Online Fan Clubs on (www.RoushFenway.com) and will be used in various press releases and online materials throughout the year.
BB&T Renews With Richard Childress RacingRichard Childress Racing has extended its partnership agreement with BB&T Corporation (NYSE: BBT) for the full-service financial institution to continue as a primary sponsor for eight races and the all-star race and a major associate sponsor of Clint Bowyer’s No. 33 Chevrolet Impala for the remaining 28 races in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
The Winston-Salem, N.C.-based corporation will also retain its status as the Official Bank of Richard Childress Racing.
The primary sponsorship races for BB&T on the No. 33 Chevrolet occur within BB&T’s primary branch banking footprint, which extended into Alabama while simultaneously increasing its market share in Florida last August. The No. 33 BB&T Chevrolet will compete March 7 and September 5 at Atlanta Motor Speedway, March 21 at Bristol Motor Speedway, March 28 and October 24 at Martinsville Speedway, April 25 and October 31 at Talladega Superspeedway, May 1 at Richmond International Raceway, and May 22 at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the annual Sprint All-Star Race.
“The BB&T/RCR partnership has been successful both on the track and in the marketplace,” said Richard Childress, president and CEO of Richard Childress Racing. “BB&T has created winning activation programs for its customers and clients through its racing activities and RCR has been fortunate enough to take BB&T to the winner’s circle in the Sprint Cup Series and Nationwide Series, as well as the head table at the Nationwide Series championship banquet. We appreciate their continued commitment to RCR and the sport as a whole.”
The BB&T/RCR partnership began in 2007 with a partial Nationwide Series program with Bowyer. The program expanded in 2008, with primary sponsorship in the Nationwide Series and a two-race primary position with Bowyer’s Sprint Cup Series program. Bowyer & Company went on to capture the 2008 NASCAR Nationwide Series drivers’ championship and won the Sprint Cup Series race in May at Richmond International Raceway. The program moved fulltime to the Cup Series in 2009.
“Our partnership with Richard Childress Racing has served as a platform and an accent of numerous marketing strategies during the past three years,” said BB&T Chief Marketing Officer Steve Wiggs. “From the top down, RCR is always committed to helping BB&T create meaningful programs that generate excitement with our clients and prospective clients. Many of our new clients and employees in Alabama and Florida were already familiar with our brand through our association with RCR. We hope our primary sponsorship of both races at Talladega and major associate sponsorship of both races at Daytona and the season finale at Homestead-Miami will increase their brand awareness and loyalty to BB&T.”
Braun Signs WilburnBraun Racing is pleased to announce that Bill Wilburn has joined their organization to serve as crew chief of the No. 11 AccuDoc Solutions team with NASCAR Nationwide Series Rookie of the Year contender, Brian Scott. Bringing with him a wealth of experience, Wilburn has over 25 years in the industry. A native of Kernersville, N.C. he most recently served as crew chief at Kevin Harvick Racing with driver, Ricky Carmichael.
Wilburn first came onto the NASCAR scene in 1984, starting out as a parts cleaner and tire changer at Stewart Racing that led driver Rusty Wallace to Rookie of the Year honors. He quickly made a name for himself as a quick tire changer and a quicker study.
In 1985, Bill became a member of Mike Curb Motorsports until a stint with Hendrick Motorsports began in 1988. In 1989, Bill was the front tire changer on the Union 76/Rockingham World Pit Crew Championship team with driver Darrel Waltrip. Doing his part, Bill was named All Star Front Tire Changer, an honor he would win four times during the course of his career.
Bill served as crew chief in the Sprint Cup Series for Petty Enterprises in 2007 and 2008. Transferring to Kevin Harvick Racing in 2009, Bill was charged with bringing stock car novice Ricky Carmichael up to speed.
Bill looks forward to another rookie driver challenge at Braun Racing.
“I’m very excited about the opportunity to join Braun Racing,” said Wilburn. “This is a team that has proven that they have all of the necessary tools to go out and contend for wins each and every week. I look forward to helping to add to their success and working together with this core group of guys who have been together for a number of years to win more races and contend for a championship.”
Scott, who will be chasing 2010 Raybestos Rookie of the Year honors, is excited about the experience that Wilburn brings with him to Braun Racing.
“Bill brings such a wealth of knowledge to our program at Braun Racing. Being able to lean on Bill while adjusting to the new car will surely flatten my learning curve. That experience gives us a greater chance at success.”
Kyle Busch Motorsports Signs Two Crew ChiefsKyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) officials announced Friday that NASCAR veterans Eric Phillips and Dan Stillman will serve as crew chiefs for KBM’s two entries in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
Phillips will head up the No. 18 Toyota Tundra, which will be driven by team owner Kyle Busch and Brian Ickler (pronounced “IKE-ler”). Busch will pilot the No. 18 Toyota whenever the Camping World Truck Series runs in companion with the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, while Ickler will drive in the non-companion events.
Stillman will serve as crew chief on the No. 56 Toyota Tundra for KBM, which will be driven full-time by 20-year-old Tayler Malsam.
“I don’t think it’s any secret how badly I want to win races,” Busch said. “We want to create a culture of winning at Kyle Busch Motorsports and the way you do that is to hire people who know how to win and how to build winning teams. Eric and Dan both came highly recommended and with impressive resumes. I look forward to working with them to get KBM off to a great start in our first year in the Camping World Truck Series.”
To say that KBM has assembled an all-star cast for its inaugural season might be a bit of an understatement when you consider that Busch, Phillips and KBM director of competition Rick Ren combined to win 16 of the 25 Camping World Truck Series races in 2009 when they were with other teams. Busch found victory lane seven times as a driver, Phillips was on top of the pit box for three wins with driver Mike Skinner, and Ren served as crew chief for Ron Hornaday’s six victories and his 2009 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship.
The 2009 season also saw Busch, Ickler, Malsam, Ren, Phillips and Stillman combine for two championships, 34 wins, 140 top-10 finishes and 23 poles in their respective efforts in NASCAR’s top-three divisions and ARCA competition. In addition to Ren’s Truck Series championship, Busch won the 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series title driving for Joe Gibbs Racing.
Phillips comes to KBM after stints at Morgan Dollar Motorsports and Randy Moss Motorsports, where he had plenty of success with Skinner and veteran driver Dennis Setzer in the Camping World Truck Series. In 2005, Phillips and Setzer combined for four wins and a second-place finish in the standings while 2009 saw Phillips guide Skinner to a third-place result in the championship.
“I’ve always enjoyed working in the Camping World Truck Series and this is a great opportunity to work with KBM, as well as everyone at Toyota and Toyota Racing Development (TRD),” said Phillips. “I’m looking forward to working with Kyle and Brian on the No. 18, but also partnering with Tayler and Dan to make sure that both KBM Toyota Tundras have a shot a winning each time we go to the racetrack.”
Stillman moves to KBM after one year as crew chief for Carl Edwards’ Roush Fenway Racing entry in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Edwards and Stillman teamed up for five wins and a second-place finish in the Nationwide Series point standings – just one spot behind 2009 champion Busch.
“After competing against Kyle all of last year in the Nationwide Series championship, I know how important winning is to him,” said Stillman, who has also had stints Dale Earnhardt Inc., and Kevin Harvick Inc. “This is a great opportunity to work with Tayler and the No. 56 Toyota team and also share information with the guys on the No. 18 Tundra. We’ve got all the pieces in place and a lot of support from Toyota and TRD and that’s all you can ask for as a crew chief.”
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