The Frontstretch Newsletter: October 1st, 2011

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Oct 1, 2011, 9:09:35 AM10/1/11
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THE FRONTSTRETCH NEWSLETTER
Presented by Frontstretch.com
The Best Seat at the Track, The Best View on the Net!
October 1st, 2011
Volume V, Edition CCVI

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NEW PODCAST! Don't forget our new FREE weekly audio segments hosted by Doug Turnbull. Click here for the September 30th edition that features Andy Lally as our main racing guest.

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Top News
by Tom Bowles and Bryan Keith

Revolution Racing's Darrell Wallace Jr. Wins Dover Race, Gresham Takes Title

Darrell Wallace Jr. may have fallen short of the K&N Pro Series East championship during Friday's season finale at Dover, but it's safe to say winning the race was of some consolation.

For one, Wallace's third win of 2011 came scarcely a week after the death of his uncle, an individual he made a point to recognize in his post-race presser (the development driver also removed his name from the door of his race car in favor of his uncle's). But in terms of adversity, there was plenty of it on-track for Wallace as well.

On lap 78, Revolution Racing teammate Sergio Pena blew a motor coming down the frontstretch. Pena, trying to get off the racing surface, came down the banking in turn 1...and smack into the path of Wallace's Camry as he was trying to get by. The resulting contact caused damage to the passenger side door of the No. 6 car, but composed work on pit road by the crew allowed Wallace to restart the event with fenders intact and off the tires.

Mired back in traffic, the race lead was handed to former Richard Childress Racing development prospect Ryan Gifford, who held the point until Jeff Anton spun himself out with 49 laps to go. Max Gresham took advantage on the ensuing restart to charge to the lead on lap 106, the start of a lengthy battle between he and fellow title contender Brett Moffitt for the race lead.

While the top two in points were duking it out, Wallace threaded his way through traffic quickly, catching the two leaders and taking the point position back by lap 117 after Gresham slid up in turn 4.

Another yellow flag flew on lap 129, when Brandon Newberry tagged the turn 2 fence and left debris on the track. Again, Ryan Gifford would get the lead back after pit stops cycled through, but a poor restart on lap 133 handed the lead to Brett Moffitt. Moffitt was on his way into the sunset before blowing a tire on lap 147 while leading.

Wallace inherited the lead following Moffitt's wreck and never relinquished it; Max Gresham had the title all but wrapped up after Moffitt bowed out and opted to take it easy coming to the checkers (he would later note he felt a tire vibration during the final run).

Behind Wallace, East Series veteran Dale Quarterley, Gresham, Eddie MacDonald and Andrew Smith rounded out the top 5.

The results allowed Max Gresham to claim the 2011 East Series championship by 66 points over Wallace. Moffitt came home third in points, with Matt DiBenedetto and Pena claiming the last two spots in the top 5.

Sprint Cup Practice Results NEW!

Check out where your favorite driver finished in Friday practice as qualifying revs up this morning.

Practice 1 Results
Practice 2 Results

News 'N' Notes

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Brian Keselowski's Cup team is working towards making its return at Martinsville in late October. The No. 92 team, which last made an attempt at Michigan in June hasn't made the starting lineup since February's Daytona 500.

- We hear all the time about how each team gets "one mulligan" in the Chase. But two races in, several drivers feel that "bad race" is already used up; among them is four-time champion Jeff Gordon.

"I do feel like our mulligan is used up," Gordon said. "You hate to do it in race one and it could have been a lot worse than that but I do think any worse finish than what we had there then we were out of it. So I would call that a mulligan. I think 25th or 24th wherever we finished there I would say that is a mulligan. I don’t think a 35th is a mulligan. It all depends on how you follow it up, you can have a 30th or 35th-place finish, or 40th if you win the next four races. It’s really all about your average finish I think is the real key there. When I say we used up our mulligan I say we used it up because in order to maintain the average that I think we have to have which I think you’re looking at a sixth or seventh-place average to get the championship, so if you have that mulligan you have to follow it up with some great finishes and get that average where it needs to be. We got a bit of a gift last week I feel like because besides Tony (Stewart) everybody else kind of had issues whether it be a tire issue or a fuel issue and were quite a ways behind us so we were able to not only have a strong finish but make up a lot of points on a lot of guys except for Tony as I mentioned.”

- Carl Edwards was suffering from a little laryngitis during his press conference. The fourth-place Chase driver has been under the weather of late but hopes to be good to go for Sunday.

- "I have no complaints." That was Mark Martin on the radio during the closing laps of a final practice where he paced the field. The 52-year old veteran, winless since '09 has always considered Dover one of his best tracks, with 31 top-10 finishes in 50 starts.

Have news for Tom, Bryan and The Frontstretch?  Don't hesitate to let us know; email us at phil.a...@frontstretch.com with a promising lead or tip.

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Hey, Frontstretch Readers!
We know you love the roar of raw horsepower under the hood that powers 43 of the best drivers in the world every weekend, but did you ever wonder how the sponsor on top of that hood also contributes to keeping the sport moving? What about the contributions of official NASCAR companies? If you think they are simply writing checks, think again. Check out our special feature - Sunday Money. This weekly Frontstretch exclusive provides you with a behind the scenes look at how NASCAR, its affiliates and team sponsors approach the daunting task of keeping fans interested and excited about the sport for 38 weeks of the year.

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TODAY ON THE FRONTSTRETCH:

Just What is the Value of East Series Title For Gresham, JGR?
by Bryan Davis Keith
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FRONTSTRETCH TRIVIA:
 
Q:
The 1993 SplitFire Spark Plugs 500 also marked the final start for a notable car. Which car was it, and who was driving it?

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

Frontstretch Trivia Guarantee: Take the shirt off our backs! If we've provided an incorrect answer to the Frontstretch Trivia question, be the first to email the corrected trivia answer to tri...@frontstretch.com and we'll send you a Frontstretch T-Shirt ... FREE!

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Coming Monday in the Frontstretch Newsletter:
-- AAA 400 Race Recap by TBA
-- Running Their Mouth: AAA 400 by Brody Jones
-- Links to your favorite Frontstretch articles, and more!
 
Monday on the Frontstretch:

Matt McLaughlin's Thinkin' Out Loud: AAA 400 by Matt McLaughlin
Matt will be here with his overall thoughts about the action from Sunday afternoon's action from the Dover.

David vs. Goliath by Bryan Davis Keith
Who's hot and who's not towards the back end of the owner points battle? Bryan brings the stories you didn't hear about into print from Sunday's race from Dover.

Monday Morning Teardown by Ron Lemasters
Ron returns for a website look at one of the big stories from Sunday's race from Dover.

Bowles-Eye View by Tom Bowles
Tom brings back his weekly post-race commentary with all of the insight you need from a weekend of racing from Dover.

Big Six: AAA 400 by Amy Henderson
Looking for all you need to know leaving the third race in the Chase for the Sprint Cup? Amy has your who, what, when, where, why and how from a weekend of racing at Dover.

Nationwide Series Breakdown: OneMain Financial 200 by Bryan Davis Keith
Bryan has all the post-race analysis you need after Saturday afternoon's Nationwide Series race from Dover.

Tracking the Trucks: Kentucky 225 by Beth Lunkenheimer
Beth has all the post-race analysis you need after Saturday night's Camping World Truck Series race from Kentucky.

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