Friday, August 31, 2007

Joe's No Fool

Future pace car??
Joe Gibbs is a very wise fellow. His [possible] decision to go with Toyota next season carries with it many facets, one being the development of the new R07 engine, and the there's Chevrolet's dominance, proven performance, etc. etc. Perhaps he has a crystal ball, because this has to be a hard choice to step away from Chevy and GM. I have faith in TRD, I mean look at their dominance in the Truck Series. The future very well could be Toyota taking the lead.
Smoke has the biggest transition. He has a very big relationship with GM outside of NASCAR, but something tells me things will all come together.
Joe Gibbs Racing to host fanfest ... check this out. What a great way to help.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Got String?

It all started a few months ago when a filling in my #14 molar fell out. My stubbornness and dislike of dental work kept me from doing the right thing. Soon I developed the occasional night time toothache, which would go away. Then on this past Monday morning it hit hard and stayed basically knocking my 6' 1" 180 lb. frame to my knees. Yesterday a dentist discovered a massive infection and today I am on a regimen of Penicillin and pain killers. I'm sitting here now with a throb that brings tears to my eyes, but it has moved to the more localized area, while before it was the whole left side of my jaw. It's been the worst pain I've ever felt... I've put a nail into my hand with a nail gun... put on a band-aid and kept working... sliced myself with utility knives, saw blades and splinters are a daily occurrence. I've dislocated shoulders, broken ribs, and suffered back injuries from my days as a competiton water skier and downhill racing and nothing compares what this one little tooth has done.

Moral of the story... go to the damn dentist bucko!!

In NASCAR... I was in the dark about the Gene Haas investigation, so the recent guilty plea and probable 2 year stint came by surprise. It wasn't long ago I wrote a post about him and his innovative robotic business as well as the state of the art 40 mil wind tunnel he had plans to build... almost the amount he has been charged with. Well, 24 months is short... he'll be back in time for the opening of the new NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte in 2110.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Fox Help Us All

Good Sunday Morning.

After a somewhat restlest sleep, I'm happy it's a day later and one day less that ESPN/ABC will be broadcasting NASCAR. The Sharpie 500 last night, according to's schedule, was the last for ESPN, but the rest of the season is ABC which has me wondering if we will still be subject to TV ad bombardment. ABC owns ESPN so it's likely things will not be pretty. I'm not a big fan of NBC's broadcasting of the races either, but they are better than these clowns. Why can't we have the Fox Network exclusively?

It was cool to hear Dale Jr's words of defense. Teresa is still family and she owns DEI... period.

The point standings barely changed after last nights race at the coliseum. Amazingly, the 10th - 13th place drivers all had good finishes, which left things pretty much equal as they were going into the race. I was hoping for a mix up... oh well, and with only 2 to go it's looking more and more like the current 12 will be the contenders... but then again, anything can happen.

It was good to see Pretty Boy Kahne have a good weekend. Poppa Ray must be happy having some Canadian money to help his struggling teams. And Bobby Labonte... wow!! The Dodge's are strong.

Mikey was funny in his #55 Toyo fighting with the leaders. One of the commentators stated that he was trying to get TV exposure... like he doesn't get enough! In the next moment came yet another ad and it was one of those stupid NAPA one's with Mikey reading his fan mail... although I like the fan that said his head is you know where... not on his shoulders.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Not Bristol Typical

The lineup for the Sharpie 500 is so different. Seeing the Dodges of Kasey Kahne and Monty on top, especially Monty at Bristol, is bizarre. In fact, there is not a Chevy in sight until 9th where Queeny sits and the naked #31 sits in 10th. And another odd ball, David Ragan in the 4th spot??

I watched some of the practice runs and the Busch race last night, which by the way was not A-Typical of Bristol. The new surface is "tire saving". I almost thought Ryan had the win on tires that should've been down to the wheels. Of course he was overpowered in the final laps by Kahne with some typical Bristol fender banging and tire rubbing which took what little life Newman's tires had right out of them and into the wall he went. Nice try though!! Newman's CORN Dodge is starting 7th tonight and he normally runs well at short tracks. It'll be interesting to see if things can be mixed up a bit for those near the fence line of The Chase.

Back at the Cottage... below is a shot of my next project. Coming off of the gable end of the area where the sliding door is will be a 16'x 20' family room. To the left is the backside of the garage... the addition will have a 12'x5' extension there that will serve as a stairwell leading down to a full finished basement from inside the garage. This was my client's idea. I will post photos of the progress.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Bring Back the Good Ole Days

More like INSANITY... but NASCAR prevails in the latest battle of the Cellular War. Perhaps the appeal in Atlanta District Court later will side with RCR and AT&T. What really has me tweaked is the apparent lack of respect for Richard Childress. Right, I know, business is business, but this is small potatoes. It's only one car. So, what will the #31 have on the hood Saturday night?

Below is the most recent addition to my growing collection. It is a car that was purchased from Harry Gant. Dale got his 1st win on asphalt with this 1964 Chevelle in 1974. I picked it up at our annual County Fair the other night for $60.00, [which is about 1/2 of it's value], brand new in the box from a collection dealer.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Bring on the Sun

I feel bad for the folks who travel long distances and plan to see a live NASCAR race months in advance only to have it washed out. The last two races I've been to have been rain delayed... one, at Talladega was run on Monday, but it cost us dearly in motel fees and air fare, plus missing more time off from work. Today doesn't look much better. There is a heavy band of rain stretching from northern Wisconsin into northern Illinois that is moving east, but there may be an opportunity. If not... tomorrow!?

Back at the Cottage... It's always nice to complete one of my projects. The guy on the steps is Bob, the home owner, and as you can see he is pleased. The before deck was a mere 6 feet wide by 16 feet long and slowly sinking into the ground because the person who built it did not use footers. I removed that and built the 12 foot by 20 foot one that you could park a truck on. The fellow in the background is my carpenter, Mike, and Bob gave Mike a $25 tip on top of the 5k plus he paid me. I thought that was very cool!!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Good Dog

I have to give credit to George at Vroom for giving me food for thought. His post today touched on what we need is a "Feel Good" race by having someone like Bobby Labonte win. It got me thinking about how it feels when an Underdog wins, like when Jamie Mac won by inches over Kyle Busch. Of course the likelihood of that is minimal at best, it is a nice thought. I also want to give George a Kudos for reminding me what year I was born... '57... and help me make up my mind which '07 #8 diecast I will add to my collection. It will be the '57 paint scheme they are running this week, but I think I will also add the traditional red Bud car... probably the CoT.

Terry Blount of ESPN NASCAR wrote a very slammin' article about the #8 Blount: Get over it, 8 lovers. He certainly tells it like it is.

With Jeffy Boy on the pole, I hope The Biff runs it up the #24's tailpipe!!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Is 12 Enough

With only 4 races left to lock in the Dozen will we see those few on the bubble taking risks? We've got Truex Jr. , Busch, Newman and Earnhardt Jr. all vying for those 11th and 12th spots. Personally, I like the change from 10 to 12 spots in the Chase and I think 15 would bring even more challengers at the end. It seems there are always those top 8 or so who will make the Chase, but by opening up another 7 we'd see a lot of different or unlikely drivers enter the equation.

I've been wondering if from a marketing standpoint will the #8 merchandise fly off the racks now or become stagnant? My buddy Ted who owns a NASCAR retail store feels the items will collect dust. The items have been the biggest sellers and are now in question. I personally will add an '07 #8 diecast to my collection... I just don't know which one. In memory of the #8 and it's final year with Dale Jr. I will probably choose the traditional red Bud car. RIP #8 !!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Change is Good

All that's needed is the #81. Although I'm not sure why Jr. wouldn't use the #83. Well, it's a no brainer that mom T kept her talons on the #8. Of course it's all in spite because without Jr. it's a worthless number... she can place it over the door in her new DEI-Ginn museum.

I'm not surprised to hear that part of the #18 Interstate Battery car woes are due to lack of cash. They've been a major car sponsor for many years now but their pockets alone are not deep enough. I'm sure JD Gibbs can find a suitable co-sponsor. I have a Bobby Labonte #18 diecast in my collection... but I also have the Ricky Rudd #21 Motorcraft and look at the changes that car has been through... "Little Debbie"... who'd a thunk!!

Back at the Cottage... Pattyjo & I will take ownership of a beautiful blue '95 T-Bird LX today at 5:00. It's in awesome condition with 88k on the odometer with new Firestone's and a 10 changer CD player mounted in the trunk. She needed a different car because the old Neon we bought from a friend in need last year is needing too much work, so we gave it to Pattyjo's brother. Pattyjo is excited.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Rain Delay

Yesterday while hanging rafters on an addition I'm building one of those nuisance summer storms suddenly opened up on us and all of my tools. After the scramble I took a ride to cool my jets and ended up getting an oil change in my high mileage van which happened to be just up the street from Victory Lane, our local NASCAR outlet. This is a cool place to hang out whether just to browse the thousands of things or shoot the crap with Ted, the owner. I did a little of both and walked out 30 minutes later with Martin Truex Jr.'s 2005 Busch Champion diecast. Ted sold it to me cheap, but probably because I looked like a drowned rat and he knows me well, plus he used to be a contractor. He sometimes complains that he misses building things and I ask him if he'd like to trade places for a week. What a cool way to spend the hot summer days... in an awesome air conditioned NASCAR retail store with wall mounted TV's showing replays of races. I almost bought the #31 AT&T car and after reading this mornings headlines I'll probably pick it up today. My little way of telling NASCAR to shove it and it is a cool looking diecast.

I've made the decision to go to Loudon on 9/15 and 9/16 without tickets in hand. Pattyjo loves the idea of buying tickets from someone on the street and although I tend to be a bit more conservative, Ted and a couple of fans in Ted's store convinced me it's the thing to do. It should be fun and knowing me I'll talk to 10 different sellers before making a decision. That's the 1st race for the Cup, so I'm sure the tickets will be pricy.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Summer Heat

Smoke has returned!! A 3 win streak and counting. The speculation around why Stewart is so strong after mid-season varies and it's anybody's guess, but I like to think he takes the first half season to warm up and by mid-season he is hot.

Kevin Harvick should know better than to anger an already ired Latino. As a rule they are hot tempered and Monty is no exception. I'm sure things will calm down. Kevin is right in that Montoya is almost always involved in some type of altercation, plus I think he had a big sense of entitlement coming into the race at The Glen. I get a sense that Monty is out to prove to the world that he is the Road Course King, but just because he's used to no fenders doesn't give him the right to tear everyone's off.

Tire hopping... Have a good day!!!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Down Under.. And Out

Marcos Ambrose is one of those guys you cannot help but like. I really felt bad for him by losing a possible spot at The Glen due to the rain soaked day we had here in NY yesterday. By 3:00 it was beautiful, so why didn't NASCAR delay the qualifying? Oh right!!! The Grand-Am Rolex Series was scheduled to race last night. Well at least there will be some fresh rubber on the track and Marcos got to enjoy a Foster's or 2. Perhaps Robby will extend his amends and give Ambrose another {fat} chance.

Back at the Cottage... My amends go out to my fellow blogator's and those who read my blog daily. This time of year is OFF THE HOOK for me. I have 3 jobs going at once and I've never mastered the Juggler's act. My carpenter Mike had a good suggestion... his brother is unemployed and will work cheap... so perhaps I will go against my own policy for a week or two and put on a part-timer. If he falls off a ladder I don't know him!!! It's a good thing I don't drink or I'd be sitting with Marcos... hmmm... never have tried Foster's Lager... I used to be a strict Bud Man... Foster's would probably knock me on my arse Mate.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Full Speed

Yeah, he looks harmless enough, but lately Old Father Time has been my nemesis. At least it's Friday already and I can thank him for that. Things will slow down at some point, but meanwhile my life his running at 7800 RPM,s.
Speaking of time... it's nearly down to the wire as to who will make the Chase. With the DEI Teams and Penske Teams running so close things can change week to week. This weeks race is an odd ball so it's a hard call. Time will tell!!

Monday, August 6, 2007

Sleepless in Lake George

It's late by my standards, but I had a pressing issue with New York State Energy Code requirements on a family room addition I'm designing and subsequently could not sleep until I corrected it. I got through that painless enough but I had to go and click on Fox NASCAR in my Favorites and wouldn't ya know.... the first thing I see is "Free-agent Kyle Busch to drive for Gibbs".... so now I'm expected to fall asleep?? I'm speechless, so I suppose I'll go wrestle with the sheets. I hope the rest of you are in deep slumber. Sweet Dreams!!

Nothing like HDTV

The June experience at Pocono left me with a bad taste. That place is horrible for a live race, rain or no rain. Yesterday's race, The Penn 500, on the other hand was decent and worth watching, but that's because I was in my own home in front of my plasma tele. Espn's coverage is ok at best and Rusty Wallace should go back to commentator school, but I like the down force wind graphics. No other network can out-do Fox, at least not in my mind.

Aside from Kurt Busch's domination, the race had some pretty cool racin. Did Jr.'s spin and comeback remind you of anything?? Young Denny at last years race... the only differences were the shock change and Denny did win it. Jr. did an awesome job, but Busch bumped him out of the top 12. The next 5 races will be very intense for the 10th through 14th spots and those Penske cars are on a rampage.

This weeks race is right here in my state at The Glen, but we won't be going. Actually, we live closer to Loudon than we do Watkins Glen and although I've never been there I've heard that The Glen is also horrible as far a seeing a race.

Robby Gordon sat one out... at least he is man enough to stand up for what he believes in and then man enough to take the penalty without whining.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

And The Winner Is....

The "Roo" Marcos Ambros maintained his composure and integrity after Robo-Gordon purposely spun him in the final laps of yesterdays French Open in Montreal. Of course Marcos had done the same to Gordon just prior, and a caution was thrown at that point because of chaos behind them... but was it thrown before or after Ambrose nailed Gordon? The topper is Robby is now contending with NASCAR. He was told to drop back behind the #33 car before the Green flag but he refused, then shortly after the re-start he spun Ambrose who had the lead and Robby is now telling NASCAR he won the race!! Of course we know the win went to Happy Harvick. I have a soft spot for Gordon because he tries so hard on a shoestring, and I do think he has a legitimate gripe and he certainly has some brass you know what's!! A battle with NASCAR is silly... right or wrong... they are always right.

Fellow Blogater Vroom reminded me that winter is creeping up on us here in the North. The recent heat that most of the eastern half of the Country has suffered has been bittersweet. The bad part is obvious... the good is the lack of clothing we need to wear and it's a good excuse to go in the water. My Golden Retriever is now 13 weeks and because of the heat wave she has been afforded the opportunity to learn to swim and she has become an expert.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

All Bud

Kudos to Jr. for getting the pole. Seeing him with the award and the "Bud" backdrop in his Bud drivers suit was cool, but it may be the last time we ever see anything like that. He looked camouflaged and all we could see was his big smile.

Penske boys up front again. They need consistency to break that top 12 barrier. Ryan was a guest on Trackside last night and listening to him talk he always maintains a good attitude, although I noticed he is picking up a bit of the Southern accent, not that that is a bad thing, just an observation. This sort of thing happens... my sister Madeline has lived in Rotterdam, Holland for years and barely speaks English anymore. If anyone hung out with Elliot Sadler for long enough they'd have to pick up the heavy drawl... and Hermie...well I can hardly understand him.

Back at the Cottage... The heat wave is supposed to break today. It was unbearable for most of this week and I shut down the tools early every day. My carpenter, Mike, is grateful, even if he misses a few hours. I did put an extra few dollars in his pay... I told him he sweated out more than that.

Friday, August 3, 2007

The Northway

This is a shot of I-87 on the Canada/New York border. This beautiful interstate runs from NYC to near Montreal, winding through the Catskills and Adirondack Mountains and is the main and only interstate here where I live about 2 hours south of the border. This means that the NASCAR haulers and Motor Coaches for this weekends Busch race are running through my town. It makes me want to go sit on an overpass with my camera, but duties prevail. Still, it gives me a cool feeling knowing that once a year the NASCAR brigade travels through here.

The Pocono race.... I'm leaning towards another JGR victory with Hamlin being the favorite. Denny plays a lot of EA Sports NASCAR games and has stated it helps his performance. I have these games and the Pocono track selection is the easiest to play. Makes me wonder how realistic these video games are, because I have the Pocono track mastered and end up in victory lane always. Perhaps Joe Gibbs would let me drive the #11 this weekend.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Warren Wallace LLC.

Rumor has it that Steve Wallace has hired young Warren as a bodyguard. The first thing Warren told him was to stay out the candy isle at convienent stores and to buy a cheap watch. This came after Steve suffered minor cuts and bruises in an attempted mugging after the Allstate 400 at the Brickyard, the men jumped him as he left the store and tried to take a wrist watch. Maybe now that Steve has Warren as a sidekick he can stay out of trouble both off and on the track.

Gotta love Smoke and his on air "Bullshit".

Pocono-no.... well that's because I've been there and putting it kindly, that place sucks!! It's better on TV.