Monday, June 20, 2016

The Frontstretch Newsletter: Inside Racing's Iowa, Le Mans Surprises

Presented by
The Best Seat at the Track, The Best View on the Net!
Jun. 20, 2016
Volume X, Edition XCVIII

What to Watch: Monday

- Today, teams continue to prepare for this weekend's action at Sonoma Raceway, the first of two road races this season.  If anything of note breaks, we'll have it for you at Frontstretch.

Monday's TV Schedule can be found here.
Top News
by the Frontstretch Staff

Sam Hornish, Jr. Takes Iowa Victory in 2016 Debut

Sam Hornish, Jr. was drafted into the No. 18 at Iowa off the bench due to Matt Tifft's back problems.  Hornish, who hadn't run a NASCAR race since the conclusion of the 2015 season wasn't even fitted for the ride at Joe Gibbs Racing until this week. That was not an issue for the Ohio native, however, who led 183 laps en route to his second Iowa victory.  Ty Dillon was second, followed by Brad Keselowski, Daniel Suarez and Alex Bowman.  Read more

Porsche Steals Le Mans Overall Victory in Final Lap

For much of Sunday's 24 Hours of Le Mans, it seemed like Toyota was going to claim a sweet victory.  

They would have... if it was the 23 Hours of Le Mans.

All of a sudden, with time counting down the manufacturer's engine turned traitor in the last ten minutes.  Mechanical failure on their part allowed the No. 2 Porsche to claim overall victory when Kazuki Nakajima stopped on the pit straight with just over three minutes to go.  Signatech Alpine won P2, Ford Chip Ganassi Racing's No. 68 won GTE-Pro, and Scuderia Corsa won GTE-Am in one of sports car racing's legendary events.  Read more

William Byron Holds Off Cole Custer for Iowa Triumph

Saturday night, William Byron held off Cole Custer in Iowa's closing laps and dealt with deteriorating track conditions to take his third win of the season.  Custer was second, followed by Cameron Hayley, Ben Rhodes and Tyler Reddick.  Read more

JR Heffner Partners with Martins Motorsports for Eldora

Saturday night, Frontstretch learned that JR Heffner has partnered with Martins Motorsports to compete in July's Aspen Dental 150 at Eldora Speedway.  Heffner will provide his own equipment while making a third attempt to conquer the high-banked dirt track.  Read more

Have news for The Frontstretch?  Don't hesitate to let us know; email us at with a promising lead or tip.

Chasing the Chase: Off Week No. 2 Update
by Phil Allaway

Naturally, since the Sprint Cup Series was off last weekend, the points did not change.  Harvick continues to hold the lead atop the standings and actually has a bigger edge than he did at this time last year, albeit with 50 fewer points due to the adjustment of the points system.  Only Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski are within one race's worth of the 2014 champion in the standings.

Point Standings (1-16): 1) Kevin Harvick 526, 2) Kurt Busch -30, 3) Brad Keselowski -46, 4) Carl Edwards -54, 5) Joey Logano -71, 6) Chase Elliott -73, 7) Jimmie Johnson -85, 8) Martin Truex, Jr. -93, 9) Kyle Busch -109, 10) Matt Kenseth -117, 11) Dale Earnhardt, Jr. -143, 12) Austin Dillon -145, 13) Denny Hamlin -146, 14) Jamie McMurray -152, 15) Ryan Newman -157, 16) Ryan Blaney -162.

Race Winners: Denny Hamlin (Daytona), Jimmie Johnson (Atlanta, Fontana), Brad Keselowski (Las Vegas, Talladega), Kevin Harvick (Phoenix), Kyle Busch (Martinsville, Texas, Kansas), Carl Edwards (Bristol, Richmond), Matt Kenseth (Dover), Martin Truex, Jr. (Charlotte), Kurt Busch (Pocono), Joey Logano (Michigan)

Letter of the Race: Sunday's American Ethanol E15 250 was brought to you by the letter "R," for Redemption.  Sam Hornish, Jr. has used a victory at Iowa to propel his career before; can he do it again?  With no plans on racing this year, Hornish was apparently substitute teaching in his home state of Ohio a couple of weeks ago.  Now, he's a two-time winner at Iowa Speedway with more races on the schedule at Richard Childress Racing in the XFINITY Series later in the season. - Phil Allaway



by Mike Neff

by Bryan Gable

by Beth Lunkenheimer


Q: In the summer of 1992 at Watkins Glen, ESPN introduced a new type of camera for use on race broadcasts.  It came in handy for the battle between Geoff Bodine, Ricky Rudd and Ernie Irvan at Sears Point the following spring.  What was it?

Check back Tuesday for the answer, here in the Frontstretch Newsletter!

Friday's Answer:

Q:  Today, Peter Dumbreck is semi-retired.  He's actually providing color commentary for the World Feed at Le Mans this weekend.  Back in 1999, he was involved in one of the most infamous crashes of all time at Le Mans.  What happened?

A: The Mercedes team was already on edge because they had already withdrawn two cars due to blowover flips prior to the race.  Mark Webber had flipped the primary No. 4 in practice.  Despite an emergency fix, Webber flipped his backup in the morning warmup.

In the race, Dumbreck was driving the No. 5 Mercedes behind one of the Toyota GT-Ones when the car took off on the run to Indianapolis, backflipping twice, over the wall and into the woods.  The crash can be seen here.

Michael J. Fuller of Mulsanne's Corner, a website that goes into the technical aspects of sports cars, believes that the entire CLR design was flawed due to an overall lack of downforce and the coupe design.

In The Frontstretch Newsletter:
We'll have breaking news from Monday and S.D. Grady returns with Sitting In The Stands: A Fan's View.

Danny Peters returns with Five Points to Ponder following Sunday's action in Iowa.
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