Doug "Fireball" Turnbull's Race Blog 

Saturday’s Kansas NASCAR race had everything, comes just ahead of critical summer stretch

  • 10:06 am Monday, May 15th, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

NASCAR is in a really good stretch of races right now. Saturday night’s Go Bowling 400 was thrilling from flag to flag (with 15 flags in between), with a balanced mixture of lead changes, side-by-side racing in the pack, contact, and confrontation. All of this transpired on a 1.5-mile track, the oft-maligned type of racing venue that receives the brunt of the blame for why the numbers for NASCAR are down. The 267-lap race had much of what fans clamor for (aside from the horrific Aric Almirola wreck – we are praying for his recovery), but did it resonate?

Early [More]

Race Capsule: Stenhouse Jr. brings down the big house at Talladega

  • 11:47 am Monday, May 8th, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

Talladega Superspeedway always has a wildcard lurking in its shadows. The track lends itself to surprise winners, big crashes, close finishes, and the bizarre. Sunday’s GEICO 500 had all of that – an extremely competitive and dramatic overtime affair that awarded pole-sitter Ricky Stenhouse Jr. his long-awaited first-career win. On a weekend where the crowd begged for soon-to-be retired Dale Earnhardt Jr. grab his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series-leading seventh ‘Dega win, the track had plans to coronate a new victor.

Flag-to-flag: Stenhouse Jr. first spoiled Junior Nation’s weekend fairytale by knocking Dale Earnhardt Jr. (finished 22nd) from the pole [More]

Who replaces Dale Jr. as both the driver of the 88 and the face of NASCAR?

  • 2:15 pm Tuesday, April 25th, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

Anyone interested in the topic of NASCAR and Dale Earnhardt Jr. heard the news about 9 a.m. today – Dale Earnhardt Jr. is retiring at the end of this season. This announcement comes on the heels of his missing the final 18 races of last season with debilitating concussion-like symptoms and in annual succession of the retirements of Jeff Gordon (before 2016) and Tony Stewart (2017) – arguably NASCAR’s two most popular drivers behind Earnhardt Jr. The reasons Earnhardt Jr. has to retire – though he will articulate them later today – are obvious: after multiple concussions, he wants [More]

Did the Bristol of old return Monday?

  • 8:46 pm Monday, April 24th, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

NASCAR’s off week stretched one extra day…kind of. Rain postponed the annual Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway to Monday at 1 p.m. and raised even more questions about how the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series cars would take to the track. Track officials took to adding an adhesive substance again and again in a fine mist the bottom groove of the track. This is the latest attempt by BMS officials to drive racing back to the one-groove, bump-and-run, confrontational cadence that turned Thunder Valley’s half-mile track into a coliseum.

The track has tried for years to regain the [More]

Scanner Chatter: Helio Castroneves ready to win again

  • 10:22 am Friday, April 21st, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

Three-time Indianapolis 500 champ Helio Castroneves swung by WSB Thursday to promote this weekend’s Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama (Sunday, 3:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN) at Barber Motorsports Park outside of Birmingham, Alabama.

The jovial “Dancing With the Stars” victor and 23-time IndyCar race-winner opens up about his almost-three-year winless streak and chasing his elusive first championship. The 41-year-old also shares his ties to Atlanta and how long he figures he can keep wheeling the No. 3 Team Penske Chevy.

Castroneves also discusses the Verizon IndyCar Series’ short schedule and dual-race weekends and if NASCAR should go that direction.

Listen here.

Race Capsule: Newman strategizes to victory at Phoenix, win slips away from Busch

  • 9:10 am Monday, March 20th, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

Ryan Newman was not anybody’s pre-race pick entering the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Camping World 500 at Phoenix Raceway. In fact, Newman wasn’t in the mix for the lead any of the race, until crew chief Luke Lambert’s call not to pit on the final stop gave the No. 31 car the lead with six laps to go. Newman held back the thundering herd and scored his 18th-career win, his first win in 129 races, and RCR’s first since 2013.

Flag to flag: Joey Logano (finished 31st), co-subject of the fight talk all week, started on the pole and [More]

Race Capsule: Harvick dominates Atlanta, Keselowski wins, many speed

  • 10:15 am Monday, March 6th, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

As we saw at Daytona last week, leading the last lap is the one that really counts. Brad Keselowski overcame unscheduled pit stops for a loose wheel and a flat tire to stay in contention, then take the lead after race dominator Kevin Harvick sped on pit road. His 22nd-career win is his first at Atlanta Motor Speedway and he almost won the Xfinity Series race the day before. Here is how the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500, a hard fought race on AMS’ 20-year-old pavement, played for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.

Flag to flag: This will be [More]

Saturday AMS notebook: Busch and Bell victorious in doubleheader

  • 10:45 pm Saturday, March 4th, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

Kyle Busch wins, car sins in Xfinity race 

After Cup drivers Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick won the first two stages of the Rinnai 250, Kyle Busch won the race on pit road after the final stops and easily won this race for the second year in a row. His No. 18 Toyota struggled with rear grip most of the race, but crew chief Scott Graves, working with Busch for the first time, made a final adjustment that kept Busch out front.

But the NOS Toyota failed post-race inspection, as NASCAR said the front right and left heights were too low. They [More]

Scanner Chatter: Garrett Smithley at home with both his team and at AMS

  • 4:10 pm Friday, March 3rd, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

HAMPTON, Ga

Garrett Smithley has come from obscurity to security with JD Motorsports. He has begun his second year in the No. 0 Chevy, having run all but the season-opening Daytona race last season in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.

Smithley’s strong 9th-place run last week in a wounded car gave the team a good boost to this weekend, where the Peachtree City native tackles his home track Atlanta Motor Speedway. He finished 24th in his underfunded ride a year ago, but says the new low-downforce package for the NXS cars is drastic.

“It’s like learning how to drive all over again,” he says [More]

Elliott shaking off Daytona, helping kids in Atlanta

  • 10:24 pm Thursday, March 2nd, 2017 by Doug "Fireball" Turnbull

Chase Elliott unveils his new foundation at Children’s Egleston and talks about Atlanta Motor Speedway and his loss in the Daytona 500.