Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Get Your 2013 Updates For The First Two LASTCAR Books! - Book Three Coming December 3, 2013!




First of all, as some of you may have noticed, both of my LASTCAR books - the Cup Series Chronicle and the Nationwide and Truck Series Expansion Pack, have now been updated with current 2013 statistics!  This includes not only articles for 2013, but updates and corrections to the older statistics in both books.  After all, as you saw here, several last-place records were set this past season!

**For those of you who have purchased either book, you do not have to purchase the books again!  Instead, you will automatically have access to the updated version of that book, free of charge.

If you have purchased your book on Amazon, your digital file has already been automatically updated.

If you have purchased your book on Smashwords, you can download the updated version of your book by clicking on either of these links below and choosing your preferred format.  There, you will be given a list of several versions of these books organized by upload date.  Pick the most current one for the latest version:
Cup Series: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/272178
Nationwide and Trucks: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/307160

If you have purchased your book on Apple, Kobo, Barnes & Noble / Nook, or any other website, your book should either already be updated or will be updated very soon.  These sites distribute my updates slower than others, so I apologize for any delay.

You will notice that these books will again be updated for free at the end of the 2014 season!

**If you have not yet purchased either book, you can buy your copy for $3.99 each at any of the links below.  I would recommend getting yours at Amazon or Smashwords since they update the fastest.  Once you do, you will also be able to get free updates for your book(s) in 2014!

AMAZON
Cup Series: http://www.amazon.com/LASTCAR-Year---Year-Last-Place-Statistics-ebook/dp/B00AXO788U/
Nationwide and Trucks: http://www.amazon.com/LASTCAR-Nationwide-Series-Expansion-1982-2013-ebook/dp/B00CE3JTA8/

SMASHWORDS
Cup Series: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/272178
Nationwide and Trucks: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/307160

BARNES & NOBLE / NOOK
Cup Series: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lastcar-brock-beard/1114303194?ean=2940044244658
Nationwide and Trucks: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lastcar-brock-beard/1115182279?ean=2940044480384

KOBO
Cup Series: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/lastcar-the-first-year-by-year-chronicle-of-last-place-finishers-in-the-nascar-cup-series-1949-2012
Nationwide and Trucks: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/lastcar-nationwide-and-truck-series-expansion-pack-1982-2012

If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know in the comments or by e-mail at brockbeard@gmail.com.

Secondly, I am thrilled to announce that my third LASTCAR book will go on sale on Tuesday, December 3!  The book is called "LASTCAR: CUP SERIES LAST-PLACE FINISHERS BY TRACK (1949-2013)" and will contain even more last-place statistics.  This book, like the previous two, will also have free updates for purchasers in 2014!  Stay tuned to this website and my Twitter @LASTCARonBROCK for more details!


Sunday, November 17, 2013

CUP: McDowell Ties Cup Series Single-Season Last-Place Record After Trailing Third Homestead Field

SOURCE: motorsport.com
Michael McDowell picked up the 27th last-place finish of his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career in Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at the Homestead-Miami Speedway when his unsponsored #98 Phil Parsons Racing Ford fell out with brake trouble after he completed 63 of the race’s 267 laps.

The finish was McDowell’s eighth of 2013, equaling the all-time single-season last-place record set by his former PRISM Motorsports teammate Dave Blaney in 2009.  It’s McDowell’s first last-place run since Texas, two races ago, and his fourth in the last ten races.  It is also McDowell’s third last-place finish in the Cup finale at Homestead, joining his runs for Tommy Baldwin Racing in 2009 and for HP Racing LLC in 2011.

McDowell came into Homestead having finished under power in three of his last four Cup Series starts, a clear sign of progress for a driver and team that have parked in nearly all of its Cup starts since 2009.  Their best finish of the season remains a 9th in the season-opening Daytona 500, followed closely by their 15th-place run at Talladega last month.  However, Homestead would also mark McDowell’s final start in the #98 as he prepares to drive the #95 Leavine Family Racing entry in 2014.  As of this writing, there is no word whether Phil Parsons Racing will field the #98 next year, nor who will drive.

McDowell was 35th fastest in the opening practice, did not participate in the second, and ran 40th in Happy Hour.  In between, he qualified 34th at an average speed of 172.260 mph.  For the 22nd time in 36 points races in 2013, just 43 cars showed up to fill the 43-car field, so no one was sent home.

At the start of the race, 43rd place was held by last week’s last-placer Tony Raines, back in Hillman Racing’s #40 Chevrolet.  The spot then went to Travis Kvapil, who brought out the race’s first two cautions when he scraped the Turn 3 wall on Lap 12, then spun off Turn 4 on Lap 24.  Kvapil fell off the lead lap, but was then passed by McDowell, who spent around twenty laps behind the wall.  Joining him was A.J. Allmendinger, whose #47 Toyota broke a shock and spent at least ten laps in the garage for repairs.  Although both returned to the track, McDowell remained in 43rd when he exited the race once more after 63 laps.  Raines fell out before the halfway point to finish 42nd.

Finishing 40th on Sunday was Josh Wise, who has finished no better than 30th since McDowell drove his #35 Ford at Watkins Glen.  Trevor Bayne was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis last Tuesday, but proved he was more than ready to tackle the Homestead track.  He ran as high as 11th near the halfway point, but lost the engine on his #21 Motorcraft / Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford less than 50 laps from the finish.  Rounding out the Bottom Five was July Daytona last-placer Paul Menard, who on Lap 232 endured the night’s most frightening moment when the right-rear hub on his #27 Chevrolet caught fire, causing the tire to explode on pit road.  Menard and his crew were uninjured in the accident.

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*Ford had not finished last in a Cup Series race at Homestead since 2003, when Matt Kenseth, the year’s series champion, lost the engine on his #17 DeWalt Power Tools Ford after he completed 28 races of the Ford 400.  This year, his first season since leaving the #17 Roush-Fenway team, Kenseth finished second in the race and in the points, 19 behind series champion Jimmie Johnson.
*The #98 had never before finished last in a Cup Series race at Homestead.

THE BOTTOM FIVE
43) #98-Michael McDowell / 63 laps / brakes
42) #40-Tony Raines / 104 laps / vibration
41) #35-Josh Wise / 119 laps / rear gear
40) #21-Trevor Bayne / 223 laps / engine
39) #27-Paul Menard / 229 laps / crash

MICHAEL MCDOWELL
2013 LASTCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES CHAMPION
ORIGINAL ARTWORK BY ROBERT TAYLOR









LASTCAR CUP SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) Michael McDowell (8)
2nd) Mike Bliss (5)
3rd) Scott Riggs (4)
4th) Bobby Labonte, Joe Nemechek, Tony Raines, Scott Speed, J.J. Yeley (2)
5th) Trevor Bayne, Dave Blaney, Jeff Burton, Denny Hamlin, Jason Leffler, Paul Menard, Danica Patrick, David Ragan, David Reutimann (1)

LASTCAR CUP SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) #98-Phil Parsons Racing (8)
2nd) #19-Humphrey-Smith Racing (6)
2nd) #44-Xxxtreme Motorsports, #95-Leavine Family Racing (3)
3rd) #36-Tommy Baldwin Racing, #87-NEMCO Motorsports (2)
4th) #7-Tommy Baldwin Racing, #10-Stewart-Haas Racing, #11-Joe Gibbs Racing, #21-Wood Brothers Racing, #27-Richard Childress Racing, #31-Richard Childress Racing, #33-Hillman Racing, #34-Front Row Motorsports, #40-Hillman Racing, #47-JTG Daugherty Racing, #51-Phoenix Racing, #83-BK Racing (1)

LASTCAR CUP SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) Ford (16)
2nd) Toyota (11)
3rd) Chevrolet (9)

With the season over, I’d like to thank Robert Taylor for your support and incredible artwork, Rob Dostie for your on-track photography of the Bottom Five, the members of the Rubbin’s Racin’ Forums for helping me find other rare photos of last-place finishers, including sites like Motorsport.com, TheHotLap.com, Getty Images, and most of all, readers like you.

2013 LASTCAR eBOOK UPDATES COMING SOON!

As I prepare for LASTCAR’s next season this coming February, I will be doing more work on my series of LASTCAR eBooks!

First of all, both my current publications - the LASTCAR Cup Series Chronicle and the Nationwide and Truck Series Expansion Pack, will be updated around the end of this month.

If you have already purchased either eBook, you will be able to download the new version FOR FREE at the website where you purchased the 2012 edition.  If you have not yet purchased either book, once you do, you will still have access to the updates, free of charge, when they are available.

Stay tuned to this website for further details - I will post an announcement when the updates are available!

In addition, I am thrilled to announce that I have another LASTCAR eBook in the works.  The working title is “LASTCAR: Cup Series Statistics By Track.”  Ever wanted to know who has the most last-place finishes at Talladega?  Or at the old Riverside International Raceway?  This book will have the answers, and much more!  It will go on sale when my current books are updated.

There are also two more LASTCAR eBooks in the works.  Both are scheduled to be released sometime this winter.

Stay tuned to this website for more details!  I will post a message here and on my Twitter @LASTCARonBROCK when the updates and the new books are available!

Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays to you all!

N’WIDE: McDowell Returns To TriStar For Second Cup-Nationwide Sweep of 2013

SOURCE: Rubbin's Racin' Forums
Michael McDowell picked up the 3rd last-place finish of his NASCAR Nationwide Series career in Saturday’s Ford EcoBoost 300 at the Homestead-Miami Speedway when his unsponsored #91 TriStar Motorsports Toyota fell out with overheating problems after 5 of the race’s 200 laps.

The finish was McDowell’s third of the season and his first since his last start for TriStar at Texas, two races ago.  Combined with three other last-place runs by Jeff Green, this finish gives TriStar its fifth consecutive last-place finish in the series, ending their 2013 with seven of the last eight.  Green, who finished 20th on Saturday, ends his 2013 with 15 last-place finishes, a new NASCAR record for most last-place finishes in a single season, beating his own record from 2012 by three finishes.

McDowell ended up behind the wheel of TriStar’s #91, another “start-and-park” entry that also made a brief appearance late in 2012.  Originally, the ride was supposed to go to 2013 LASTCAR Nationwide Series champion Jeff Green, who was moved from the #10 to make way for teammate Mike Bliss, who himself was moved from TriStar’s #19 to let Dakota Armstrong drive that car.  However, when Eric McClure stepped out of the #14 once more, Green ended up in McClure’s ride, leaving the #91 open for McDowell.

McDowell was 35th in the opening practice, 29th in Happy Hour, then improved further in qualifying with the 26th fastest time at an average speed of 160.647 mph.  This ranked him sixth among the eleven “go-or-go-homers” who attempted to qualify for the race.  The only driver who missed the field was Carl Long, who after his Truck Series entry for Rick Ware was withdrawn, missed the Nationwide field driving Mike Harmon’s #74 Dodge.

In the race, McDowell pulled out of the race after five laps, following the #42 The Motorsports Group entry of Josh Wise.  McDowell ran behind Wise the previous lap, so he was credited with the last-place finish.  Wise gave the #42 its ninth 39th-place finish of the 2013 season.  Wise’s teammate T.J. Bell gave TMG’s #40 its second-straight Bottom Five with a 38th-place finish.  Mike Bliss gave Jeff Green’s #10 TriStar Toyota the 37th spot, giving that team its 28th bottom-five finish in 31 starts in 2013.  Rounding out the Bottom Five was Ryan Ellis, rounding out his season in the #24 Frontline Wraps Toyota fielded by SR2 Motorsports.

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*This was the first last-place finish for the #91 in a Nationwide Series race since the fall of 2012, when Tony Raines’ TriStar Motorsports Toyota fell out with a vibration five laps into the Great Clips 200 at Phoenix.  The number had not finished last in a Nationwide race at Homestead since 2008, when Todd Bodine’s MSRP Motorsports Chevrolet fell out with brake failure after 4 laps of the Ford 300.
*This was the first time a Nationwide Series last-placer fell out with overheating issues since the summer of 2012, when Jeff Green’s #10 TriStar Motorsports Toyota fell out 3 laps into the Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona.
*Only two times in 2013 has a Nationwide Series last-placer completed more than six laps: the May race in Charlotte (Robert Richardson, Jr., 45 laps), and the July race at Daytona (Morgan Shepherd, 21 laps).

THE BOTTOM FIVE
40) #91-Michael McDowell / 5 laps / overheating
39) #42-Josh Wise / 5 laps / electrical
38) #40-T.J. Bell / 20 laps / vibration
37) #10-Mike Bliss / 49 laps / electrical
36) #24-Ryan Ellis / 102 laps / vibration

JEFF GREEN
2013 LASTCAR NATIONWIDE SERIES CHAMPION
ORIGINAL ARTWORK BY ROBERT TAYLOR









LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) Jeff Green (15)
2nd) Blake Koch, Michael McDowell (3)
3rd) Joey Gase (2)
4th) Tanner Berryhill, Danny Efland, Johanna Long, Eric McClure, Robert Richardson, Jr., Morgan Shepherd, Dexter Stacey, Mike Wallace, Josh Wise, J.J. Yeley (1)

LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) #10-TriStar Motorsports (16)
2nd) #00-SR2 Motorsports (3)
3rd) #52-Jimmy Means Racing (2)
4th) #14-TriStar Motorsports, #17-Vision Racing, #23-R3 Motorsports, #27-SR2 Motorsports, #42-The Motorsports Group, #46-The Motorsports Group, #50-Mark Beaver, #70-ML Motorsports, #89-Shepherd Racing Ventures, #91-TriStar Motorsports, #92-KH Motorsports, #01-JD Motorsports (1)

LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) Toyota (25)
2nd) Chevrolet (6)
3rd) Dodge, Ford (1)

TRUCKS: J.J. Yeley Trails First Truck Series Field In More Than Two Years

SOURCE: Rubbin's Racin'
J.J. Yeley picked up the 2nd last-place finish of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career in Friday’s Ford EcoBoost 200 at the Homestead-Miami Speedway when his #07 BYF.org / nccer.org Toyota fell out with a fuel pump issue after he completed 2 of the race’s 148 laps.

The finish was Yeley’s first of the 2013 season and his first in a Truck Series race since the fall of 2011, when he fell out with transmission failure after the opening lap at Talladega.  It is also the second last-place run for the #07 Ken Smith team, which most recently trailed the field with Jimmy Weller at Martinsville, three races ago.

The original 36-truck entry list increased to 40 before practice, including the late entries of Mike Harmon in the #84 and Brad Riethmeyer in the #50.  However, two teams withdrew before practice.  The #1 Rick Ware entry of last week’s last-placer D.J. Kennington started by putting Carl Long in the truck, then withdrew along with the #0 of 2013 LASTCAR Truck Series champion Chris Lafferty.  Lafferty’s withdrawal prevented him from having a chance at breaking the single-season Truck Series record of seven last-place finishes, leaving him tied with Phil Bonifield (1999) and Mike Garvey (2011).

The 38 remaining trucks practiced and qualified at Homestead.  Yeley timed in 32nd in practice, then improved to 31st in qualifying at an average speed of 161.929 mph.  Missing the race were Jennifer Jo Cobb, Lafferty’s team owner and teammate, and Brad Riethmeyer.

Yeley pulled behind the wall after two laps, followed by RSS Racing teammates Chris Jones (#38) and Travis Kvapil (#93), who exited just before the first debris caution on Lap 6.  Finishing 33rd was Chad McCumbee, making his first Truck Series start of the season in his first start behind the wheel of the #99 Bell Trucks America Ford previously driven by Bryan Silas.  Rounding out the Bottom Five was Spencer Gallagher, 10th in the 2013 ARCA standings, who was involved in a grinding two-truck crash exiting Turn Four on Lap 103.  Gallagher, competing in his first partial Truck Series season for his family’s team, was uninjured in the crash.

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*This was the second last-place finish in the last three years for the #07 in the Truck Series finale at Homestead.  In 2011, Johnny Chapman lost the clutch on his Bobber.info / ASI Limited Toyota after the opening lap of the Ford 200. (Special Thanks to Adam Daxam Beard)
*This was the first time a Truck Series last-placer fell out of a race due to a fuel pump issue since June 23, 2001, when Bobby Coffey’s #74 Bo-Co Performance Chevrolet exited the Memphis 200 at the Memphis Motorsports Park on the opening lap.  It was one of just two career starts for Coffey.

THE BOTTOM FIVE
36) #07-J.J. Yeley / 2 laps / fuel pump
35) #38-Chris Jones / 3 laps / transmission
34) #93-Travis Kvapil / 5 laps / rear gear
33) #99-Chad McCumbee / 42 laps / power steering
32) #21-Spencer Gallagher / 101 laps / crash

CHRIS LAFFERTY
2013 LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES CHAMPION
ORIGINAL ARTWORK BY ROBERT TAYLOR









LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) Chris Lafferty (6)
2nd) Chris Jones (3)
3rd) Johnny Chapman (2)
4th) Jeff Babcock, Ryan Blaney, Ricky Ehrgott, Mike Harmon, Jennifer Jo Cobb, D.J. Kennington, Mason Mingus, Scott Riggs, Scott Saunders, Jimmy Weller, J.J. Yeley (1)

LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) #0-Jennifer Jo Cobb (7)
2nd) #93-RSS Racing (3)
3rd) #38-RSS Racing, #84-Chris Fontaine, #07-Ken Smith (2)
4th) #1-Rick Ware Racing, #10-Jennifer Jo Cobb, #29-Brad Keselowski, #35-Kevin Cywinski, #81-Bobby Dotter, #92-Ricky Benton (1)

LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP - FINAL
1st) Chevrolet (12)
2nd) Ford (4)
3rd) Dodge, Toyota (3)

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

OPINION: 2013 Has Been A Season Unlike Any Other - And That’s Not A Good Thing

Typically, the season finale of any sport is a time to celebrate the year that has passed, to remember the excitement and the incredible competition that has led us fans to the final battle.

But when looking back on the 35 races that carried us to this Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead, I’m really struggling to remember much beyond the controversies, frustrations, and even tragedies that have made the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Season one of the most difficult I’ve ever watched.

First off, there’s only 43 drivers on the entry list for Homestead, making NASCAR’s brand-new qualifying format utterly useless for the 22nd time this season.  In the other 14, no more than 45 cars have attempted to qualify for each race.  This includes the Daytona 500, which had its shortest entry list since 2004, and the Brickyard 400, with its shortest ever.

This sounds like a trivial concern until you put it in broader context.  Unlike 2004 and again in 2009, when several start-up teams joined the series to compete on qualifying day, the 2013 field stagnated.  Part-time teams like Xxxtreme Motorsports (#44) and Humphrey-Smith Motorsports (#19) stopped racing by midseason.  Never in the last two decades have so few teams competed for NASCAR’s top championship.

Some of the blame for the short fields may be due to the added cost of the “Gen-6” car, a vehicle whose promise of improved competition has yet to be realized.  With a schedule long-overdue for a complete overhaul, an increasing portion of the season has become practically unwatchable.  Single-file racing is still the norm at Las Vegas, Kansas, and Chicago, but now also at the once-competitive quad-ovals at Charlotte, Atlanta, and Texas.

What’s most surprising is how awful the restrictor-plate package has become.  Daytona SpeedWeeks was one of the least competitive in years while last month’s “Wild Card Weekend” at Talladega ended with a ten-lap parade to the caution flag.  The few enjoyable races at the short tracks and road courses are so scattered in the schedule that they are far from the norm, almost certainly alienating casual fans while infuriating the faithful.  

Also, many drivers who started the season won’t be competing on Sunday.  Tony Stewart started the year with a rash of bad runs, then recovered with an impressive win at Dover only to suffer a broken leg in a dirt track race on August 5 that’s kept him off the track the rest of the season.  Stewart’s former teammate, Denny Hamlin, broke his back when he hit an unprotected wall while battling for the win at Fontana, and though he missed just four races, he has struggled ever since.  Brian Vickers, who relieved Hamlin during that span, pulled an upset by winning at Loudon in July, finally securing him a full-time ride in the #55 for Michael Waltrip Racing, then was himself sidelined on October 14 with the second blood clot to strike him in the last three seasons.  Thankfully, Sunday’s field will still have Trevor Bayne, who despite his diagnosis with multiple sclerosis earlier this week, is extremely eager to compete.

Another driver injured this year was Bobby Labonte, who broke three ribs in a bicycle accident on August 28 that kept him out of the #47 Toyota for three races.  This was just the latest in a series of struggles for Labonte, whose consecutive start streak ended when he couldn’t get a ride at Kentucky, a race that came after back-to-back last-place finishes with two different teams at Michigan and Sonoma.  This weekend, ten years after his most recent win, Labonte also finds himself without a full-time ride for 2014, joining Jeff Burton, ousted after eight years with Richard Childress Racing to make way for Childress’ grandson Austin Dillon.  Next year, Dillon will drive the #3 in a NASCAR far different than when we last saw it in 2001.

While it is yet unclear whether Labonte or Burton will return to Cup competition, it is known that Ken Schrader will be making his final series start at Homestead in the FAS Lane Racing #32, ending a Cup career dating back to 1984.  Mark Martin, driving in relief for Tony Stewart this Sunday, has also hinted he will retire after Homestead, but that is anything but certain following his infamous “Salute To You Tour” of 2005.  Either way, with Labonte, Burton, Schrader, Martin, and even IndyCar-bound Juan Pablo Montoya leaving the series in 2014, NASCAR’s field could be even more depleted than this year’s as its youngest stars struggle to compete with a handful of remaining champions like Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth.

But what has defined 2013 more than anything have been the tragedies and near-tragedies that have befallen both drivers and fans.  In 1964 and 1993, NASCAR endured two devastating seasons where more than one driver was killed, including two past series champions.  2013 saw the passing of two more stars.  Nationwide Series regular Jason Leffler lost his life in a dirt track race in New Jersey on June 12, one month after 1989 Cup Series Rookie of the Year and fellow dirt track star Dick Trickle died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound on May 16.

Equally horrifying have been a number of injuries sustained by fans in 2013.  This includes not only the well-publicized accidents of a wheel and tire assembly flying into the stands during a Nationwide race at Daytona and the faulty TV cables dangling on the track at Charlotte, but a less-discussed incident in the second Charlotte race where broken glass fell from the window of an unoccupied suite.  Thankfully, none of those three events caused any deaths, but such can only be attributed to dumb luck, not adequate preparation.

Then, just when the sport needed it the least, Clint Bowyer slowed down and spun out at Richmond, sparking a controversy unlike any NASCAR has ever seen.  Martin Truex, Jr., who that night in Richmond raced his way into the Chase field with a broken wrist, not only lost his Chase berth instead of Bowyer, but also his ride when sponsor NAPA pulled the plug.  And, even with imperfect justice given and thirteen drivers in the Chase, the championship is already all but sewn-up for the guy who’s won five of the last seven.

All of this late-season drama was broadcast by ESPN, the network who (along with TNT) tried to get out of their network contract a year early.  The same ESPN that, earlier this season, made fun of a tribute to a fallen driver when a longtime car owner said a heartfelt goodbye to the sport.

If you’re thinking I’m sounding too negative here, you need to remind yourself that not only did all these things actually happen in the last nine months, but that every one of them is a lesson NASCAR needs to learn from - and now - in order to survive.  This isn’t coincidence, an example of a season merely being snake-bitten.  With all these things happening in such a short amount time, I believe it’s something else.

I believe 2013 has brought to the surface glaring flaws in the sport that can no longer be ignored.  From the Chase format, to fan safety, to the haphazard use of soft walls, to the declining quality of television broadcasts, to the obstacles preventing small teams from acquiring sponsorship, to the way the sport cares for retired drivers, NASCAR needs to spend this offseason not only looking at itself in the mirror, but telling us what it sees.

Then, just maybe, we can all get back on the right track.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

CUP: Tony Raines Joins Teammate Cassill’s Identical Car At The Bottom Of Phoenix Field

SOURCE: Twitter, Rubbins Racin' Forums
Tony Raines picked up the 10th last-place finish of his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career in Sunday’s AdvoCare 500 at the Phoenix International Raceway when his #33 Little Joe’s Autos Chevrolet fell out with brake problems after he completed 29 of the race’s 312 laps.

The finish was Raines’ second of 2013 and his first since Talladega, three races ago, when he was driving the #40, the Hillman Racing team’s second car.

For Phoenix, Raines moved to the #33 Chevrolet while part-time teammate Landon Cassill drove the #40.  Both Chevrolets were virtually identical - dark blue cars with blank white hoods, though Cassill’s roof numbers were a dark orange.  Raines timed in 42nd in the first two practice sessions and 43rd in Happy Hour.  He improved to 41st in qualifying with a speed of 132.057 mph, just ahead of Dave Blaney and Joe Nemechek.  Cassill qualified just in front of Raines in 40th.

At the start of Sunday’s race, Raines slipped behind Blaney, then Nemechek and held the 43rd spot.  He was still running there in the early laps when he became the first car to lose a lap.  Just past the halfway point of the opening 50-lap green-flag run, Raines pulled behind the wall.  Several other drivers battled for 42nd through the first 100 laps, including Timmy Hill in the #32 U.S. Chrome Ford.  However, once Cassill pulled behind the wall after 63 laps, he eventually slid down to 42nd.

The remaining occupants of the Bottom Five exited the race in spectacular fashion.  41st-place Travis Kvapil lost an engine entering Turn 1 on Lap 132, dropping oil and sending up a huge plume of smoke that caused Dave Blaney to spin.  40th-place Cole Whitt ended up with a destroyed #30 Lean 1 Toyota when he piled into a three-car wreck between David Reutimann, Jeff Burton, and Danica Patrick.  Reutimann continued with right-front damage, then suddenly lost his brakes on Lap 192, sending him rear-first into the Turn 1 wall so hard that it folded his rear windshield in half, leaving him 39th.  No drivers were injured in these incidents.

For the third time in the last four races, 2013 LASTCAR Cup Series Champion Michael McDowell finished a race under power with full sponsorship on his #98 Phil Parsons Racing Ford.  This time, he ran his GunBroker.com Ford to a 32nd-place finish, four laps down to race winner Kevin Harvick.  However, by not finishing last, McDowell will not be able to break the Cup Series single-season last-place record in 2013.  The record is eight last-place finishes, held by Dave Blaney in 2009.  McDowell can still tie Blaney with a last-place run at Homestead next week, where he has finished last in two of the last four runnings.

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*This was Raines’ first last-place finish in a Cup race at Phoenix since 2009, the year he swept both last-place finishes at the track for two different teams: in the spring for the #73 team owned by Barry Haefele and in the fall driving the #37 owned by Front Row Motorsports.
*Chevrolet had not finished last in a Cup race at Phoenix since the fall race in 2010, when Brendan Gaughan’s #71 South Point Hotel and Casino Chevrolet was involved in a single-car accident on Lap 2 of the Kobalt Tools 500.
*The #33 had never before finished last in a Cup race at Phoenix.

THE BOTTOM FIVE
43) #33-Tony Raines / 29 laps / brakes
42) #40-Landon Cassill / 63 laps / brakes
41) #93-Travis Kvapil / 129 laps / engine
40) #30-Cole Whitt / 142 laps / crash
39) #83-David Reutimann / 187 laps / crash

LASTCAR CUP SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Michael McDowell (7)
2nd) Mike Bliss (5)
3rd) Scott Riggs (4)
4th) Bobby Labonte, Joe Nemechek, Tony Raines, Scott Speed, J.J. Yeley (2)
5th) Trevor Bayne, Dave Blaney, Jeff Burton, Denny Hamlin, Jason Leffler, Paul Menard, Danica Patrick, David Ragan, David Reutimann (1)

LASTCAR CUP SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) #98-Phil Parsons Racing (7)
2nd) #19-Humphrey-Smith Racing (6)
2nd) #44-Xxxtreme Motorsports, #95-Leavine Family Racing (3)
3rd) #36-Tommy Baldwin Racing, #87-NEMCO Motorsports (2)
4th) #7-Tommy Baldwin Racing, #10-Stewart-Haas Racing, #11-Joe Gibbs Racing, #21-Wood Brothers Racing, #27-Richard Childress Racing, #31-Richard Childress Racing, #33-Hillman Racing, #34-Front Row Motorsports, #40-Hillman Racing, #47-JTG Daugherty Racing, #51-Phoenix Racing, #83-BK Racing (1)

LASTCAR CUP SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Ford (15)
2nd) Toyota (11)
3rd) Chevrolet (9)

N’WIDE: Half Of The 2013 Nationwide Series Last-Place Finishes Belong To TriStar’s #10

SOURCE: Jeff Wagoner
Jeff Green picked up the 53rd last-place finish of his NASCAR Nationwide Series career in Saturday’s ServiceMaster 200 at the Phoenix International Raceway when his unsponsored #10 TriStar Motorsports Toyota fell out with a vibration after he completed 4 of the race’s 200 laps.

The finish was Green’s fifteenth of 2013 and his fifth in the last seven races.  When adding in Michael McDowell’s last-place run for the team last week at Texas, the #10 TriStar Motorsports team has now finished last in four consecutive races, in six of the last seven, and amassed a season total of sixteen, exactly half of the thirty-two races run so far this year.

It is easily the most dominant last-place season of any team in NASCAR history in a year that has seen Green break his own single-season last-place record and continue to pad his lead in the overall LASTCAR standings.

Green was 26th in the opening practice, 30th in Happy Hour, then ended up 31st in qualifying with an average speed of 129.162 mph, fourth-slowest among the twelve “go-or-go-homers” who attempted to qualify.  Missing the race were 37th-fastest Morgan Shepherd, his eleventh DNQ of 2013 and second in a row, and the #92 of 41st-fastest Dexter Stacey.

Former LASTCAR record holder Derrike Cope took a turn in the ML Motorsports #70 Toyota this weekend, but crashed hard in qualifying.  For the race, he ran one of his own Creation-Cope Racing Chevrolets with the “3” on the car number “73” reshaped into a “70.”  Cope fell out after 104 laps with handling woes to finish 35th, narrowly missing the Bottom Five.

Green, however, pulled out after four laps, once again edging a car from The Motorsports Group for the final spot in the field.  This time, it was Josh Wise in 39th behind the wheel of TMG’s #42.  Blake Koch extended his streak of bottom-five finishes to four in a row in SR2 Motorsports’ #00, and TMG teammate T.J. Bell gave the team’s primary #40 its first Bottom Five of 2013 with a 37th place run.  Rounding out the Bottom Five was Carl Long, driving the only Dodge in the field for Mike Harmon.

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*This was Green’s first last-place finish in a Nationwide Series race at Phoenix since March 3, 2012, when his #10 TriStar Motorsports Toyota fell out with a vibration after he completed 3 laps of the Bashas’ Supermarkets 200.

THE BOTTOM FIVE
40) #10-Jeff Green / 4 laps / vibration
39) #42-Josh Wise / 6 laps / electrical
38) #00-Blake Koch / 9 laps / transmission
37) #40-T.J. Bell / 13 laps / brakes
36) #74-Carl Long / 63 laps / brakes

LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Jeff Green (15)
2nd) Blake Koch (3)
3rd) Joey Gase, Michael McDowell (2)
4th) Tanner Berryhill, Danny Efland, Johanna Long, Eric McClure, Robert Richardson, Jr., Morgan Shepherd, Dexter Stacey, Mike Wallace, Josh Wise, J.J. Yeley (1)

LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) #10-TriStar Motorsports (16)
2nd) #00-SR2 Motorsports (3)
3rd) #52-Jimmy Means Racing (2)
4th) #14-TriStar Motorsports, #17-Vision Racing, #23-R3 Motorsports, #27-SR2 Motorsports, #42-The Motorsports Group, #46-The Motorsports Group, #50-Mark Beaver, #70-ML Motorsports, #89-Shepherd Racing Ventures, #92-KH Motorsports, #01-JD Motorsports (1)

LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Toyota (24)
2nd) Chevrolet (6)
3rd) Dodge, Ford (1)

TRUCKS: Kennington The First Canadian Truck Series Last-Placer Since 2009

SOURCE: Rubbin's Racin' Forums
D.J. Kennington picked up the 1st last-place finish of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career in Friday’s Lucas Oil 150 at the Phoenix International Raceway when his #1 PocketFinder.com Chevrolet was involved in a multi-truck crash on the second lap of the race.  The finish came in Kennington’s second series start.

Born in St. Thomas, Ontario, the 35-year-old Kennington is a two time champion of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series.  In seven years on the tour, he has scored nineteen victories and never finished worse than third in series points, including a close runner-up finish to Scott Steckly this past September.  He also has 48 starts in the NASCAR Nationwide Series with a career-best finish of 11th at Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in 2010.

Kennington was making his first Truck Series start of 2013.  His most recent start in the series  came on March 27, 2010 when he finished 17th in the Kroger 250 at Martinsville.  He drove for longtime car owner Rick Ware that day, and would again for his return to the series last Friday.  Although Ware’s team has competed regularly in the Nationwide Series since 2011, Kennington’s race would be just the third Truck Series start for 2013.  Ware’s #1 Chevrolets finished 20th with Dusty Davis at Daytona and a season-best 6th with Timmy Hill at Talladega.

At Phoenix, Kennington ran 25th in both practice sessions, then timed in 20th with an average speed of 131.584 mph.  This ranked Kennington fifth among the eleven “go-or-go-homers” who attempted to qualify, though with 36 trucks once again running for as many spots, no one failed to qualify.

On Lap 2 of the race, Kennington was running the high lane in Turns 3 and 4 when he suddenly broke loose and slapped the outside wall, causing significant damage to the right-front of his truck.  As the field checked-up, Brennan Newberry spun to the apron, but was undamaged in the incident.  Kennington pulled behind the wall, his night finished.  Newberry recovered to come home 18th.  J.J. Yeley apparently also suffered damage in the Kennington wreck and exited the race after two laps, leaving him 35th.

Rounding out the Bottom Five were Mike Harmon, who left with an oil leak during the Kennington caution; Bryan Silas with his third 33rd-place finish in his last six starts; and the RSS Racing Chevrolet of 2013 LASTCAR Truck Series runner-up Chris Jones.

The 2013 LASTCAR champ, Chris Lafferty, was not in Friday’s field.  However, if Lafferty starts and finishes last next week at Homestead, he can set a new single-season last-place record in the Truck Series.  His current total of six is tied for most all-time with Phil Bonifield (1999) and Mike Garvey (2011).

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*Although this was Kennington’s first last-place finish in the Truck Series, he also has two more in the Nationwide Series, both within two weeks of each other while driving the #72 MacDonald Motorsports entry in the fall of 2007.  The first came at Memphis, when handling woes stopped his NPPL / Vector Dodge after 44 laps.  The other came at Phoenix, when his Northern Provincial Pipe Lines Dodge was taken out in a two-car crash after seven laps.
*Kennington is the first Canadian to finish last in a Truck Series race since September 26, 2009, when NASCAR Cup Series veteran Trevor Boys fell out with a vibration after the opening lap of the Las Vegas 350 at Las Vegas.  Boys was driving the #89 Laffery Performance / Blue Ox Chevrolet owned by Chris Lafferty, this year’s LASTCAR Truck Series Champion.
*This was the first last-place finish by the #1 in a Truck Series race since September 16, 2006, when Robert Richardson, Jr.’s WinYourMortgage.com Chevrolet was involved in a multi-truck crash after he completed the opening lap of the New Hampshire 200 at New Hampshire.

THE BOTTOM FIVE
36) #1-D.J. Kennington / 1 lap / crash
35) #07-J.J. Yeley / 2 laps / crash
34) #84-Mike Harmon / 3 laps / oil leak
33) #99-Bryan Silas / 10 laps / engine
32) #93-Chris Jones / 14 laps / brakes

LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Chris Lafferty (6)
2nd) Chris Jones (3)
3rd) Johnny Chapman (2)
4th) Jeff Babcock, Ryan Blaney, Ricky Ehrgott, Mike Harmon, Jennifer Jo Cobb, D.J. Kennington, Mason Mingus, Scott Riggs, Scott Saunders, Jimmy Weller (1)

LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) #0-Jennifer Jo Cobb (7)
2nd) #93-RSS Racing (3)
3rd) #38-RSS Racing, #84-Chris Fontaine (2)
4th) #1-Rick Ware Racing, #10-Jennifer Jo Cobb, #29-Brad Keselowski, #35-Kevin Cywinski, #81-Bobby Dotter, #92-Ricky Benton, #07-Ken Smith (1)

LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Chevrolet (12)
2nd) Ford (4)
3rd) Dodge (3)
4th) Toyota (2)

Sunday, November 3, 2013

CUP: Michael McDowell Secures Record-Breaking Third Consecutive LASTCAR Cup Series Championship

SOURCE: motorsport.com
Michael McDowell picked up the 26th last-place finish of his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career in Sunday’s AAA Texas 500 at the Texas Motor Speedway when his unsponsored #98 Phil Parsons Racing Ford fell out with a vibration after he completed 27 of the race’s 334 laps.

The finish was McDowell’s seventh of 2013 and his first since Dover, five races ago.  Now two finishes ahead of second-place Mike Bliss in this year’s last-place standings with just two races to go, McDowell has secured the 2013 LASTCAR Cup Series Championship.  Bliss, who has not started a Cup race since Atlanta in September, would lose the championship even if he finished last at both Phoenix and Homestead.  McDowell already leads the bottom-five tiebreaker 23-11.

McDowell is the first Cup driver ever to score three consecutive LASTCAR Cup Series championships.  The late J.D. McDuffie scored three out of four from 1984 through 1987.

McDowell’s three titles have all come driving for Phil Parsons, who in 2010 signed the former Michael Waltrip Racing rookie to join Dave Blaney at PRISM Motorsports.  When Blaney eventually left to join Tommy Baldwin Racing, McDowell became the team’s only driver for HP Racing LLC, the Parsons team’s new name in 2011.

McDowell claimed the 2011 LASTCAR title in a close contest with Travis Kvapil, then driving a “start-and-park” entry, #55, for Front Row Motorsports.  The next two titles came after the Parsons team merged with Whitney Motorsports who, with the help of longtime Cup owner Mike Curb, formed Phil Parsons Racing.  Last year’s title chase was again a close one as McDowell claimed the title in a bottom-ten tiebreaker over Reed Sorenson, driving for former PRISM partner Randy Humphrey.

This week, it was announced that McDowell would be leaving the Parsons team in 2014 to replace Sorenson as driver of the #95 Leavine Family Racing team. McDowell drove the #95 in his first-ever start in the Sprint Showdown at Charlotte this past May.  McDowell finished 14th in the 23-car field.  Like the Parsons team, which turned in an impressive 9th in the Daytona 500 and a 15th last month at Talladega, the Leavine team has also turned heads in 2013, finishing 9th with driver Scott Speed in the spring Talladega race.

At Texas, McDowell began the weekend filling in for 2013 LASTCAR Nationwide Series Champion Jeff Green as driver of the #10 TriStar Motorsports Toyota while Green relieved TriStar teammate Eric McClure in the #14.  McDowell finished last that day and was set to start 35th for Sunday’s Cup race.  McDowell secured the spot with a lap of 189.321 mph, having turned in the 40th fastest time in the opening practice, then improved to 37th in Happy Hour.

At the start of Sunday’s race, last-place was juggled between 43rd-place starter J.J. Yeley, who spun out in his qualifying attempt, and the #87 of Joe Nemechek.  Nemechek was still running near the back when the first caution came out for debris on Lap 16.  Under the yellow, McDowell decided not to pit in order to lead a lap.  He ran on the outside of Carl Edwards before surrendering the lead on the backstretch just before the green flag. McDowell pulled out of the race soon after the restart, securing him the 43rd spot.

It was the first time a driver finished last in the Cup and Nationwide races at the same track and on the same weekend since Josh Wise at Bristol in the spring of 2012.

Finishing 42nd was David Ragan, last week’s last-placer at Martinsville, who suffered another engine failure after 81 laps.  Jeff Gordon, who wrecked in Turn 1 on Lap 75, had fallen as far back as 42nd, but returned to the track in the final sixty laps to climb up to 38th.  The rest of the Bottom Five included 41st-place Timmy Hill, whose engine let go after 125 laps, Bobby Labonte, who also lost an engine after 144, and Josh Wise in Front Row’s #35.

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*McDowell is the first Cup Series last-place finisher this season to have led a single lap in the same race.
*McDowell has swept both Cup Series last-place finishes at Texas in 2013.  In the spring, his car overheated after 44 laps, and he relieved an ailing Bobby Labonte for a few additional laps.

THE BOTTOM FIVE
43) #98-Michael McDowell / 27 laps / vibration / led 1 lap
42) #34-David Ragan / 81 laps / engine
41) #32-Timmy Hill / 125 laps / engine
40) #47-Bobby Labonte / 144 laps / engine
39) #35-Josh Wise / 145 laps / vibration

LASTCAR CUP SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Michael McDowell (7)
2nd) Mike Bliss (5)
3rd) Scott Riggs (4)
4th) Bobby Labonte, Joe Nemechek, Scott Speed, J.J. Yeley (2)
5th) Trevor Bayne, Dave Blaney, Jeff Burton, Denny Hamlin, Jason Leffler, Paul Menard, Danica Patrick, David Ragan, Tony Raines, David Reutimann (1)

LASTCAR CUP SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) #98-Phil Parsons Racing (7)
2nd) #19-Humphrey-Smith Racing (6)
2nd) #44-Xxxtreme Motorsports, #95-Leavine Family Racing (3)
3rd) #36-Tommy Baldwin Racing, #87-NEMCO Motorsports (2)
4th) #7-Tommy Baldwin Racing, #10-Stewart-Haas Racing, #11-Joe Gibbs Racing, #21-Wood Brothers Racing, #27-Richard Childress Racing, #31-Richard Childress Racing, #34-Front Row Motorsports, #40-Hillman Racing, #47-JTG Daugherty Racing, #51-Phoenix Racing, #83-BK Racing (1)

LASTCAR CUP SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Ford (15)
2nd) Toyota (11)
3rd) Chevrolet (8)

N’WIDE: McDowell, Filling In For Green, Finishes Last At Texas

SOURCE: Jeff Wagoner
Michael McDowell picked up the 2nd last-place finish of his NASCAR Nationwide Series career in Saturday’s O’Reilly Auto Parts Challenge at the Texas Motor Speedway when his unsponsored #10 TriStar Motorsports Toyota fell out with a vibration after he completed 4 of the race’s 200 laps.

The finish was McDowell’s second of 2013 and his first since Bristol last spring, twenty-seven races ago.

McDowell was making his first Nationwide Series start since his runner-up performance at Mid-Ohio in August and his first-ever for TriStar Motorsports.  Jeff Green, who had already secured the 2013 LASTCAR Nationwide Series title in the #10 five races ago, was set to drive the car at Texas.  However, when Green’s teammate Eric McClure was again sidelined by illness, Green took over the fully-funded #14.

McDowell, tabbed as Green’s replacement, ran 28th-fastest in the first practice, 27th in Happy Hour, then timed in 24th in qualifying at an average speed of 180.192 mph.  The only the driver to miss the field was July Daytona last-placer Morgan Shepherd in his #89 Chevrolet.

At the start of Saturday’s race, McDowell pulled the #10 behind the wall just one lap before Michigan last-placer Dexter Stacey in the #92 Maddie’s Place Rocks Ford.  Finishing 38th was Josh Wise, securing yet another bottom-five finish for The Motorsports Group in his #42, followed by Johanna Long in the #70 ForeTravel Motorcoach Chevrolet and the #00 FrontlineWraps.com Toyota of Blake Koch.

Jeff Green finished 27th, four laps down, in McClure’s #14 Hefty Ultimate / Reynolds Toyota.

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*Despite the driver change, the #10 TriStar Motorsports team successfully swept both last-place finishes at Texas in 2013.  Four of the last six Nationwide races at this track have had a TriStar car finish last with three of those coming with Jeff Green.

THE BOTTOM FIVE
40) #10-Michael McDowell / 4 laps / vibration
39) #92-Dexter Stacey / 5 laps / suspension
38) #42-Josh Wise / 6 laps / electrical
37) #70-Johanna Long / 49 laps / clutch
36) #00-Blake Koch / 79 laps / handling

LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Jeff Green (14)
2nd) Blake Koch (3)
3rd) Joey Gase, Michael McDowell (2)
4th) Tanner Berryhill, Danny Efland, Johanna Long, Eric McClure, Robert Richardson, Jr., Morgan Shepherd, Dexter Stacey, Mike Wallace, Josh Wise, J.J. Yeley (1)

LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) #10-TriStar Motorsports (15)
2nd) #00-SR2 Motorsports (3)
3rd) #52-Jimmy Means Racing (2)
4th) #14-TriStar Motorsports, #17-Vision Racing, #23-R3 Motorsports, #27-SR2 Motorsports, #42-The Motorsports Group, #46-The Motorsports Group, #50-Mark Beaver, #70-ML Motorsports, #89-Shepherd Racing Ventures, #92-KH Motorsports, #01-JD Motorsports (1)

LASTCAR N'WIDE SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Toyota (23)
2nd) Chevrolet (6)
3rd) Dodge, Ford (1)

TRUCKS: Lafferty, Cobb End RSS Racing’s Three-Year Reign As LASTCAR Truck Series Champions

SOURCE: motorsport.com
Chris Lafferty picked up the 9th last-place finish of his NASCAR Camping Word Truck Series career in Friday’s WinStar World Casino 350 at the Texas Motor Speedway when his #0 OEM Auto Parts Plus / Koma Unwind Chevrolet fell out with transmission troubles after he completed 4 of the race’s 147 laps.

The finish was Lafferty’s sixth of 2013 and his first since his most recent start at Las Vegas, three races ago.  With two races to go and a three-finish lead over second-place Chris Jones in the 2013 last-place standings, Lafferty has officially clinched this year’s LASTCAR Truck Series Championship, his first in any of NASCAR’s top divisions.  It is a successful comeback for the #0 Jennifer Jo Cobb-owned team, which last year lost the title in a bottom-five tiebreaker with RSS Racing’s #38 driven by Dennis Setzer.  Lafferty’s title also ends RSS Racing’s streak of three consecutive LASTCAR Truck Series titles.

Lafferty did not practice in the opening session, but timed in 34th in Happy Hour, then secured the 35th and final starting spot for the race with an average speed of 154.985 mph.  With just thirty-five trucks for as many spots, no one was sent home.

Lafferty and three others in the Bottom Five fell out during the opening green-flag run.  By a single lap, he edged Morgan Shepherd for the spot.  The 71-year-old Shepherd, making his first Truck Series start since 2008, fell out with transmission trouble in Norm Benning’s second truck, #75.  J.J. Yeley, driving the #07 that finished last the previous week in Martinsville with newcomer Jimmy Weller, finished 33rd, followed by the RSS Racing #38 of LASTCAR title runner-up Chris Jones.  Rounding out the Bottom Five was Mike Harmon, whose #84 WCIParts.com Chevrolet lost the transmission after 31 laps.

LASTCAR STATISTICS
*This was the first last-place finish for the #0 in a Truck Series race at Texas since June 11, 2004, when Loni Richardson’s Value Tool & Engineering Chevrolet lost the rear end after 2 laps of the O’Reilly 400K.
*This was Lafferty’s first last-place finish in a NASCAR race at Texas.

THE BOTTOM FIVE
35) #0-Chris Lafferty / 4 laps / transmission
34) #75-Morgan Shepherd / 5 laps / suspension
33) #07-J.J. Yeley / 6 laps / suspension
32) #38-Chris Jones / 6 laps / rear end
31) #84-Mike Harmon / 31 laps / transmission

LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Chris Lafferty (6)
2nd) Chris Jones (3)
3rd) Johnny Chapman (2)
4th) Jeff Babcock, Ryan Blaney, Ricky Ehrgott, Mike Harmon, Jennifer Jo Cobb, Mason Mingus, Scott Riggs, Scott Saunders, Jimmy Weller (1)

LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) #0-Jennifer Jo Cobb (7)
2nd) #93-RSS Racing (3)
3rd) #38-RSS Racing, #84-Chris Fontaine (2)
4th) #10-Jennifer Jo Cobb, #29-Brad Keselowski, #35-Kevin Cywinski, #81-Bobby Dotter, #92-Ricky Benton, #07-Ken Smith (1)

LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Chevrolet (11)
2nd) Ford (4)
3rd) Dodge (3)
4th) Toyota (2)