Will Martin Truex remain a championship contender without Cole Pearn?

A somewhat surprising announcement recently came out of the Joe Gibbs Racing stables when former NASCAR Cup Series championship winning crew chief Cole Pearn revealed that he had decided to step down from his duties as the leader of the No. 19 Toyota team of driver Martin Truex, Jr. Together the pair has won 24 races and the 2017 NASCAR Cup Series title. Citing a need to spend more time with his family, Pearn stated that he would be pursuing opportunities outside of NASCAR for the foreseeable future. “This was an incredibly difficult decision,” Pearn said in a press release…

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Does NASCAR Really Need Street Racing?

Over the past couple of weeks the topic of NASCAR taking its sport to street courses has been tossed about on social media and various other sites where racing is discussed. And my simple one word response to that is- Why? Motives such as reaching new markets and racing in cool locales have been mentioned as reasons for the sudden desire to take NASCAR to the streets. However, little mention has been made of the racing that would actually take place on these makeshift courses potentially set to become new homes for a sport that has traditionally been contested on…

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Turn 2 Blog: Jimmie Johnson’s Farewell & Evaluating Driver Moves

*Turn 2 Blog is a regular feature on InsideCircleTrack.com. Here, site operators Michael Moats and Richard Allen take turns offering their thoughts on the NASCAR and pavement short track racing topics of the day. Richard: This off-season has gotten off to a fast start with some big news having already dropped and perhaps more still in the offing. I think we have to start with the announcement that seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson plans to retire from full-time NASCAR competition at the end of the 2020 season. While this might not necessarily come as a shock to most,…

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Would You Want a Top Ride in a Lesser Series or a Lesser Ride in a Top Series?

Since there is not so much actual racing going on in the NASCAR world right now, use your imagination for a moment and pretend that you are an up-and-coming race car driver who has been labeled as a “can’t miss” prospect. However, this imaginary scenario has one major drawback. While you’re the hot name on the lists of several car owners, there isn’t room for you in the driver lineup with any of the sport’s elite teams. Certainly you want to strike while the iron is hot in terms of moving up to the next tier but the move you…

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Kyle Busch might very well go down as the greatest in NASCAR history

For the second time in his career, Kyle Busch is the NASCAR Cup Series champion. For some, that gives cause to celebrate. But for those who do not count themselves as fans of the Joe Gibbs Racing driver, there may still yet be a bad taste in their mouths as they work to digest the final outcome of Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at the Homestead-Miami Speedway. As is the case virtually every time the driver of the No. 18 Toyota achieves some new milestone, the conversation invariably turns toward Busch’s place in NASCAR history. Here is someone who is almost…

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That’s not exactly how this NASCAR Playoffs thing is supposed to work

Matt Crafton won his third NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series championship on Friday night at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Obviously, that’s great for the veteran driver and his ThorSport Racing team. However, his path to that title was not exactly carved out the way in which NASCAR intended when this current championship-deciding system was devised. The current NASCAR Playoffs system is the evolutionary product of the ‘Chase for the Cup’ format that was created following the 2003 NASCAR Cup Series season to prevent a situation such as the one that played out that year when Matt Kenseth won the championship by using…

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Good Thing That Scuffle Happened at the End of the Martinsville Race

Here we are several days removed from the First Data 500 contested last Sunday at the Martinsville Speedway and despite being closer to the running of this weekend’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event at Texas Motor Speedway, the vast majority of talk, print, and television content revolving around the sport is still focused on the paper-clip shaped track located in southern Virginia. But unfortunately, not much of that talk is centered on the racing that took place the half-mile. Instead, most who are discussing Sunday’s race are chattering about the altercation that occurred on pit road following the checkered…

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Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin enter Martinsville with decided advantages

Martinsville Speedway currently holds the distinction of being the first track to host a race in the ‘Round of 8’ portion of the NASCAR Playoffs. That means that at the end of the day on Sunday followers of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series could potentially know who one of the four drivers with a chance to be crowned as the 2019 champion will be. The winner of the First Data 500, provided that driver is one of the eight still remaining in the title hunt, will be issued an invitation as one of the Championship 4 contestants in the…

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Playoff Racing: You have won me over

Matt Kenseth drove to such an impressively consistent season in 2003 that he wrapped the NASCAR Cup Series title even before the green flag was waved over the field at the season finale race at the Homestead-Miami Speedway. Despite the fact that he only scored one victory that year, the 25 top-10 finishes Kenseth compiled were enough to allow him to be crowned as the series champion following the season’s penultimate race in Rockingham, NC. Even though he had won more than twice as many races as any other driver on the series that season, Ryan Newman could only muster…

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Are the big tracks giving NASCAR a Formula 1 type feel?

The biggest and fastest tracks on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule have always required drivers to work together by using the draft in order keep pace with the competition and pass other cars. This has been true since the 1950’s when the first of what we have come to call the ‘plate tracks’ was first built. But lately it seems as if the teams, and perhaps more importantly the manufacturers, have decided that working together to achieve the goal of placing one of their own in the winner’s circle supersedes all else at Talladega Super Speedway and Daytona…

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