Thursday, November 10, 2016

The Frontstretch Newsletter: Brian Scott Announces Retirement

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The Best Seat at the Track, The Best View on the Net!
Nov. 10, 2016
Volume X, Edition CCI
What to Watch: Thursday
- Today is pull-in day for NASCAR's National Series at Texas Motor Speedway.  Camping World Truck Series teams will be going through inspection today, but no on-track activity is scheduled.  We'll have any news that breaks today at Frontstretch.

Thursday's TV Schedule can be found here.

Top News
by the Frontstretch Staff

Brian Scott Announces Retirement

This morning, Richard Petty Motorsports' Brian Scott announced his retirement from racing, effective at the end of the 2016 Sprint Cup Series season.  Scott is walking away to spend more time with his family.  Read more

NASCAR Penalizes Nearly Two Dozen Teams in Texas

On Wednesday, NASCAR released the weekly penalty report.  It was a biggie.  15 teams were penalized in Sprint Cup alone.  The biggest hits were point penalties to Brendan Gaughan and the No. 88 in the XFINITY Series, along with a $10,000 lugnut fine for Joey Logano's crew chief Todd Gordon.  Read more

Have news for the Frontstretch? Don't hesitate to let us know; email us at with a promising lead or tip.
Editor's Note: Potts' Shots will return soon.
The Critic's Annex: Striping Technology 350k
by Phil Allaway

Greetings, everyone.  Last weekend, the Camping World Truck Series kicked off a tripleheader weekend at Texas Motor Speedway by dodging showers and racing 350 kilometers on the 1.5-mile quad-oval.  The Chase was in full swing, so it more or less tempered how the race was coverage.

I still do not like the idea that the Chase affects every aspect of how races are covered.  As long as this terrible system is around, it has to play some role, but it can't be the only thing.  Prior to the race, only Chasers got any on-air interviews.  Was the driver that ended up dominating much of the race a Chaser?  Heck no.  Say what you want about Spencer Gallagher, but that man had it going on Friday night.  Likely the only reason he didn't either win or come very close to it was that his pit crew had some issues, especially on the last stop.

The primary feature of the day was a piece where Michael Waltrip spent some time with GMS Racing's full-time drivers (Gallagher, Johnny Sauter and Ben Kennedy).  Here, we learn a little about Gallagher's background and how he got into racing.  Of course, knowing who's writing this, you can understand that I might have wanted a bit more.  For example, there was a point early on in which Derrike Cope was serving as what amounted to a driver coach for Gallagher in ARCA.

In addition to somewhat new information on Gallagher's background, we got comments from Sauter and Kennedy about the victories that locked them into the Chase.  Admittedly, the content with Gallagher was what drew me in here.  Also, Gallagher in general seems to be a really interesting person with quite the personality.  I think NASCAR could do a better job in promoting him.

The race itself flew by since there was no real trouble in the event.  I'm not a fan of these caution clocks because they break up the natural flow of races.  Also, it raises costs for the teams (its much more expensive this year to rent pit crews because nearly every stop will be made under caution, meaning no margin for error.

During the race itself, there were some moments of great action, but they were far and few between.  The final run in the race was probably the most exciting since it was a little under 20 laps of green-flag racing to the finish from there.  However, I just don't want that to be accomplished in that fashion.  If there's an incident to cause that 18 lap final run, that's fine.  Engine failure?  Fine by me; it happens.  Debris?  Depends, although some of the debris we saw Sunday night during the Sprint Cup was legitimate.  I'd rather not have a piece of carbon fiber punch a hole in my nose.

To be really honest, Friday night's race was not very exciting to watch.  While I have no doubt that Phil Parsons is going to bring his A-game to a broadcast, I don't think I can say the same about Vince Welch.  Welch on play-by-play today is really not all that much different from when he was doing part-time play-by-play for Nationwide Series races on ESPN.  He bores me.  I'm pretty sure I'm not alone.

Nothing that Welch does draws me into watching a Camping World Truck Series race on FOX Sports 1.  What he does bring to the table is stability.  Rick Allen provided that for over ten years in the broadcast booth, dating back to SPEED's first Truck Series broadcast at Daytona in 2003.  Then, he left after Eldora in 2014 to focus on NASCAR America and the-then upcoming return of NASCAR on NBC.  The plan was to replace Allen with Steve Byrnes, which I was fine with.  Unfortunately, cancer got in the way of that plan.  That Big C is one tough hombre.  Everyone can agree that the sooner it can be eradicated, the better.

We ended up with 16 months of a revolving door in the booth, which is never good when viewers like having a steady group up there each week.  Having Welch there has helped a little, but I don't necessarily look forward to truck races.

Then, you have Michael Waltrip, who was once given an overall approval rating (I guess that's what it amounts to) of less than ten percent by race fans.  These days, he's calmed down a bit.  He isn't as annoying as he used to be.  Either that, or I don't notice it as much anymore.  Now that he's no longer a car owner, he doesn't have a conflict of interest anymore (or, at least a monetary one).  He's not really pimping Toyotas as much as he once did (thank goodness), but I still don't enjoy him much as an analyst.  He doesn't even really use his experience.  Its like he's just there to entertain and his shtick wore out for me as much as a decade ago.

Post-race coverage was very substantial since the race only had the three caution clocks.  As a result, viewers got a lot of post-race content.  There were interviews with all the Chasers and basically everyone who factored into the event.

Overall, I didn't particularly enjoy Friday night's truck broadcast.  The telecast itself wasn't bad, it just didn't pull me in.  Caution clocks do nothing for me.  As far as I'm concerned, it is a contrivance.  Also of note, had we had them last year, there would have been 12 for the season (according to Reid Spencer, who looked everything up prior to the start of the season and told me as such at the Rolex 24 in January).  We've had 19 caution clock yellows this year, including three Friday night.  The last two races on the schedule are both night races.  We'll see what happens.

Phil Allaway is the Newsletter Manager and a Senior Writer for  He can be reached via e-mail at
Frontstretch Line of the Week
From Timothy Peters Eying Championship Despite 1-year Winless Drought

"We're always working hard toward [finding sponsors].  There isn't a minute that goes by that we're not doing some sort of work on sponsorship. It's a lot of work in progress right now and hopefully we'll have some news sooner than later.

"I hope I'm right here at Red Horse Racing in 2017. I love it here. I've been here since 2009, Tom [DeLoach, team owner] and everyone are family to me. I've been able to have success here so I want to continue that." - Timothy Peters on his current situation at Red Horse Racing


by Clayton Caldwell and Sean Fesko

by Joseph Wolkin

by Huston Ladner

by Bryan Gable

by Toni Montgomery

by Aaron Bearden and Matt Stallknecht


Q: Here's a non-Phoenix related question.  In 1989, Dale Earnhardt had an incident in practice that forced him to drive a Lowes Foods-sponsored Pontiac in the Goody's 300 at Daytona.  This wasn't your everyday crash.  What happened?

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

Wednesday's Answer:

Q:  In 1993, Nigel Mansell was scheduled to make his INDYCAR oval debut at Phoenix International Raceway.  However, that did not come to pass.  What happened?

A: In practice, Mansell spun in turn 1 and backed hard into the wall.  The impact punched a hole in the wall and resulted in Mansell suffering a concussion and brusing.  Mansell ended up having to miss the race, but came back with a vengeance later in the season
In The Frontstretch Newsletter:
We'll preview the Sprint Cup Series' Can-Am 500k while also providing news from Thursday.

We'll have Four Burning Questions for you to think about heading into this weekend's action in Phoenix.
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