Gibbs continues winning ways in Duels

Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin stepped up to dominate the Sprint Unlimited. The domination has not ended since and has extended to teammate Matt Kenseth. In Duel One, Matt Kenseth would lead for 31 of the 60 laps and held off two charging Chevys of Kasey Kahne and Kevin Harvick. The race was run clean as the entire sixty laps were completed under the green.

The Top 5 from Duel 1 were: 1st Matt Kenseth, 2nd Kevin Harvick, 3rd Kasey Kahne, 4th Marocs Ambrose, and 5th Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Duel two race was also clean…until they came off turn four heading into the front stretch of the tir-oval. It was there Jimmie Johnson ran out of gas. Yes, you read that right. The 6 time champion ran out of gas in a 60 lap race.

All I could think was the gas guy had ONE job. The carnage after left seven cars destroyed. This included Martin Truex Jr. who won the outside pole award to start second. It also gave us Clint Bowyer going “ass over teakettle” and sticking the landing to drive to the finish line.

Here is a picture of Clint in mid air.

The Top 5 from Duel 2 were: 1st Denny Hamlin, 2nd Jeff Gordon 3rd, Kurt Busch, 4th Paul Menard, and 5th Brian Scott.

The next race is the Daytona 500 which will come to us live at 12:00 PM on Sunday, February 23rd on Fox with defending race winner, Jimmie Johnson! Below is the full list of cars that will race in the Daytona 500.

1

3

Austin Dillon

2

78

Martin Truex. Jr.

3

20

Matt Kenseth

4

11

Denny Hamlin

5

5

Kasey Kahne

6

24

Jeff Gordon

7

9

Marcos Ambrose

8

41

Kurt Busch

9

88

Dale Earnhardt. Jr.

10

27

Paul Menard

11

98

Josh Wise

12

33

Brian Scott

13

43

Aric Almirola

14

21

Trevor Bayne

15

47

AJ Allmendinger

16

42

Kyle Larson

17

38

David Gilliland

18

40

Landon Cassill

19

31

Ryan Newman

20

15

Clint Bowyer

21

14

Tony Stewart

22

1

Jamie McMurray

23

26

Cole Whitt

24

32

Terry Labonte

25

16

Greg Biffle

26

52

Bobby Labonte

27

10

Danica Patrick

28

13

Casey Mears

29

23

Alex Bowman

30

99

Carl Edwards

31

55

Brian Vickers

32

48

Jimmie Johnson

33

2

Brad Keselowski

34

17

Ricky Stenhouse. Jr.

35

22

Joey Logano

36

7

Michael Annett

37

18

Kyle Busch

38

4

Kevin Harvick

39

36

Reed Sorenson

40

51

Justin Allgaier

41

30

Parker Kligerman

42

66

Michael Waltrip

43

34

David Ragan

The five drivers who did not qualify were Eric McClure, Michael McDowell, Joe Nemechek, Ryan Truex, and Morgan Sheperd. Dave Blaney had to withdraw due to not being able to find a backup after being involved in the seven car accident in Daytona 500 practice.

Now I’m sure you are wondering, hey wait! Kevin was second in his Duel, why is he in the back of the order? Well, he failed post race inspection. The track bar had more rake then what is allowed which is what allows rear travel in the car. Kevin found out live on air as he moved to be an analyst in Hollywood Hotel. Here was his reaction:

Credit to Mark Neighbors, twitter handle @woodyc47 for the screen grab.

Nationwide Series Time and Start

The Drive 4 COPD 300 will come to us live on ESPN starting at 12:00 PM on Saturday, February 22nd, with coverage on ESPN. The previous race winner of the event last year is Tony Stewart.

Camping World Truck Series Time and Start

The NextEra Energy Resources 250 will be TONIGHT on Fox Sports 1! The race coverage begins at 7:00 PM with the green flag roughly scheduled to drop around 7:33 PM. The defending race winner is Johnny Sauter. I cannot understate how fun this race is! It usually one of the best of the season and should be checked out!

In Random News:

NASCAR Hall of Fame Nominees Announced

The 2015 NASCAR Hall of Fame Nominees were announced this afternoon. The 20 indivudals who are eligible for selection into the Hall of Fame are as follows

Buddy Baker

Red Byron

Richard Childress

Jerry Cook

Bill Elliot

Ray Fox

Rick Hendrick

Bobby Isaac

Terry Labonte

Fred Lorenzen

Raymond parks

Benny Parsons

Larry Phillips

Wendall Scott

Burton Smith

Mike Stefanik

Curtis Turner

Joe Weatherly

Rex White

Robert Yates.

Excluded from this list is eligible to be nominated driver Mark Martin which is a crying shame.

My five from that list would be Buddy Baker, Red Byron, Benny Parsons, Wendall Scott, and Burton Smith. We’ll find out the official inductees later in the year.

Petty vs. Stewart: Please just both of you shut up…

Tony Stewart is not done fueling the fire from Richard Petty’s comments. The problem with this story is it can’t die unless we let it and Smoke’s not shutting up. Tony Stewart recently made comments that Danica should race Petty and if she won should stick the checkered flag up “The King’s” you know what. Richard Petty, unwilling to back down from his comments said he’d be more than ready and willing to race Danica.

Danica has reportedly been in the corner rolling her eyes with the rest of us at these two.

Juan hopes to hit the jet dryer at Indy…errr...race at Indy…

If Team Penske can get a ride together, Juan Pablo Montoya wants to drive at the Brickyard 400 in July. Juan has come close on two occasions to winning the race, including the year he dominated only to lose on a speeding penalty.

Pace car fire finally figured out?

Chevy has said they believe a pinched wire in the strobe system has caused the fire. I stand by Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s “Recall.” comment.

Darlington gets sponsor for Nationwide

Sports Clips has agreed to sponsor the Nationwide series race at Darlington. The sponsor has long sponsored Denny Hamlin at the track’s Cup race, so it does make sense for this association.

Random Sports/Non Sports thought:

Let’s get ready for the high banks of Daytona for three days straight!

Have a question, suggestion or witty comment? Feel free to leave one below! Don’t want to do that? Then the fastest, easiest, and quickest way to interact with me is on Twitter, @tpierc07. I also am on Facebook, but that one you have to work for. Don’t do social media? Then feel free to e-mail me at [email protected]!

I will see you all here on Monday for full weekend recaps for Daytona!

Tyler Pierce