THE FRONTSTRETCH NEWSLETTER Presented by Frontstretch.com The Best Seat at the Track, The Best View on the Net!
Feb. 20, 2017
Volume XI, Edition VIII
What to Watch: Monday
- Today is a quiet day at Daytona International Speedway. Meanwhile, there is still plenty of racing in Volusia County. The World Series of Asphalt at New Smyrna Speedway will continue as scheduled tonight. Action from there can be seen for free at fanschoice.tv.
Editor's Note: With Speedweeks underway, we are back to daily Newsletters. We'll have plenty of action from Daytona to bring you this week.
Also, today is the first newsletter that will be sent out via TinyLetter, a service from MailChimp. In 2017, we'll be trying some new things here. At the bare minimum, you'll see more pictures in newsletters. As we learn the new program, we'll be able to implement more for you. We hope you enjoy it.
Joey Logano Dodges Last-Lap Crash to Win Clash at DaytonaBrad Keselowsi and Denny Hamlin dominated Sunday's rain-delayed Advance Auto Parts Clash, leading 66 of the 75 laps. On the final lap, the two dominant drivers collided in turn 2. Joey Logano slipped past and pulled away to win the Clash. Kyle Busch just beat out Alex Bowman and Danica Patrick for second. Kevin Harvick rounded out the top 5. Read moreChase Elliott Wins 2nd Straight Daytona 500 Pole
On Sunday afternoon, Hendrick Motorsports once again swept the front row for the 59th running of the Daytona 500. Chase Elliott was fastest in Round 1, then turned in a lap at 46.663 seconds (192.872 mph) to win the Daytona 500 pole. Teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. was just two-thousandths of a second slower in second. Brad Keselowski was third fastest, followed by Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex, Jr. Read moreGreg Biffle Will Not Race Full-Time in 2017On Friday, Greg Biffle announced that he currently has no plans to race in 2017. For now, Biffle will appear on NBCSN's NASCAR America as an in-studio analyst. Read more
Entry List: PowerShares QQQ 300
On Sunday, NASCAR released the official entry list for Saturday's PowerShares QQQ 300. 44 cars are entered, including two entries with drivers that have not been announced as of yet. Read more
Entry List: Next ERA Energy Resources 250
Also on Sunday, NASCAR released the entry list for Friday night's NextERA Energy Resources 250, the season opener for the Camping World Truck Series. 39 trucks are entered for a 32 truck grid. Read more
Spencer Gallagher, Chase Elliott Announced for 4th GMS Truck
On Thursday, GMS Racing announced that Spencer Gallagher and Chase Elliott will drive the No. 23 Chevrolet in the Camping World Truck Series in the first two races of the season. The team previously announced the No. 23 as a team with an "All-Star" lineup. Read more
MAVTV to Supplement FOX Sports ARCA Coverage in 2017
On Friday, ARCA announced a new three-year deal with MAVTV to broadcast ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards events. The deal provides for the ten races that will not air on either FOX Sports 1 or 2 to air either live or on tape delay on either MAVTV or the Lucas Oil Racing TV service. Read more
Letter of the Race: Sunday's Advance Auto Parts Clash was brought to you by the letter A for "Avoidance." Joey Logano had to skillfully steer clear of the wrecking Denny Hamlin on the final lap in order to win on Sunday, but there were a number of great moves on lap 75 that prevented the race from ending with a big 'ol pile up in turn 2. - Phil Allaway
Quotes to Remember: Advance Auto Parts Clash/Daytona 500 Qualifying
compiled by Phil Allaway
"You definitely had to change your strategy up as the race went. Normally the Clash, we start this race, and we want to go out there and win, but it's also a nice advantage to be out there as a race team to knock the rust off. Five laps into the race, I made three mistakes already. Definitely it was a little rusty from the last time I went superspeedway racing, and to have myself, my spotter, we were able to kind of clean up our mistakes for later on in the race, which was good.
"The only way we were going to beat them was to do the same and be better at it than they were. So Brad, myself and Kevin, we were able to kind of talk a little bit over the caution through our spotters and said, hey, we're going to be committed to each other and we're just going to figure it out as we go. Once we got in line, we were able to start kind of ‑‑ I call it leapfrogging. We kind of grabbed one at a time, one at a time, and Brad was doing a good job of getting a run, getting outside of them, pulling back, and I was able to follow Brad through, Kevin was following me, and then there at the end, I kind of got shuffled out, got stuck in the middle, lost some spots, and was able to eventually get a good enough run to break free again, get back to Brad's bumper, give him the run into Turn 1, but that was either going to win the race or they were going to crash. And the good thing is he had the run, he had to make the move. Denny had to make the block, but I was able to see that the block was coming way too late and it wasn't going to work, so I immediately went to the top because I saw that they were going to crash, and we were basically in the right place at the right time and were able to drive our Shell‑Pennzoil Ford into victory lane at the Clash, so it was a pretty fun, eventful race. Fun to be able to change our strategy up and figure out a way to win throughout the race." - Joey Logano, Clash winner
"Nope. I don't remember [the last couple of laps]. About the only thing I do remember, I guess, is when those guys all got sideways, I was expecting to just collected there on the outside. I didn't close my eyes, but I essentially was just holding on as tight as I could just like "Days of Thunder," just gas it and hope you clear the smoke, right?
"We made it through, and then down the backstretch I saw the 22 had a big lead on us, so it kept growing, too. For some reason he had more momentum off the corner than I did, and I saw the 88 behind me and thought I had a shot with him if we could have got together a little bit better and him push me, we both could have got back up to the 22 I felt like. He would have been a sitting duck and we both could have raced for the win, but Bowman had other plans, which is fine. It's just racing, trying to get these guys' mindsets and seeing what they're thinking about in order to figure out what you've got to do later on this week. There's still two races to go." - Kyle Busch, finished second
"We were pretty well buried there, kinda struggled throughout the race to keep runs going, and Chase [Elliott] got us up there, pushed us up there pretty far, and kind of stalled out again once we got kind of to the middle of the pack, and they all started wrecking on the bottom, and just kind of like Kyle said, it's "Days of Thunder," wide open on the top.
"My point of view, I got T.J. telling me to use the run and get on his quarterpanel and didn't completely realize the 22 was out there all by himself. So just trying to better our position and get to second and try to use my run. You know, it's just racing. No worries either way. But just very thankful to be here with Hendrick Motorsports. It's been a lot of fun filling in, and really excited to see Dale Jr. get back in the car for the 500." - Alex Bowman, finished third
"Ain't much to it. The car does all the work. You just kind of get to the ‑‑ the transitions are kind of important as far as feeding the car into the corner and also running as tight as you can on the apron without bouncing the skirt off the apron or giving up any speed, or just time adding feet to your lap by running high, at least a little bit, can make a big difference. But other than that, the driver, I don't think he's feeling like he's in control of too much. The car is doing most of the work.
"I'm definitely thinking about the race and what we can do to try to improve there. You know, Daytona was certainly a struggle for us last year just as far as getting into wrecks or wrecking and tearing up a lot of cars, so I hope we can just make it to the end of the race next week. That's obviously a huge battle at times, and I think as this racetrack has wore and the surface gets older, tires are going to mean more, which I think is good for the folks that are sitting in those grandstands across from us and the folks watching on TV, which is good.
"So I think that's going to have a little bit of a strategy play to it, and obviously qualifying well is great. I don't necessarily know that the starting spot means quite as much as the pit road selection. That first pit stall I think can be a pretty big benefiting factor if you use it to your advantage, and unfortunately last year I didn't make it to the first pit stop, so we didn't get to use it. So I hope we can use it this year and use it all day long would be a big help." - Chase Elliott, pole winner
"I didn't know where we stood against the competition yesterday in practice. It's real hard to figure out what guys are doing, how they're trimming their cars out, and whether to trust the speed you're seeing from people. Alan I don't think had a ton of confidence in what they had yesterday, but when it came time, both of us were able to show up, and it's good to be on the front row." - Dale Earnhardt Jr., qualified second
Phil Allaway is the Newsletter Manager and a Senior Writer for Frontstretch.com. He can be reached via e-mail at
Q: In 1993, Al Unser Jr. made his one and only start in the Cup Series in the Daytona 500. Unser drove that race in Ken Schrader's backup car after crashing in his Gatorade Twin 125. What was Unser supposed to be promoting?
Check back Tuesday for the answer, here in the Frontstretch Newsletter!
Q:In 1995, David Green earned a special entry into the Busch Clash in a No. 95 Chevrolet Lumina. How did this come about?
A: At the time, Green was the defending Busch Grand National champion. Even though he won only one in 1994 (and that victory came because Mark Martin infamously screwed up and pulled in a lap early), he led the series with nine poles in 28 races. The poles allowed Green to snag a spot in the Clash.
~~~~~~~~~~ COMING TOMORROW
In The Frontstretch Newsletter:
We'll have breaking news from Monday, Tom Bowles returns with Numbers Game and S.D. Grady is back with Sitting In The Stands: A Fan's View.
Phil Allaway returns with the first edition of Couch Potato Tuesday for 2017. Here, he will talk about the ARCA and Clash broadcasts while reviewing some of the changes for this season on television.