Friday, September 12, 2008

No Shortage of Storylines

A Red Bull Toyota will not participate in the Chase for the Sprint Cup, but there are still plenty of storylines surrounding Red Bull Racing Team as NASCAR’s postseason begins this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

+ Brian Vickers begins to debate what premiere week TV shows to download to his MacBook Pro.

+ AJ Allmendinger is fighting for his top-35 life. He and the No. 84 are 34th — 10 points out of the red in the car owner standings.

+ Brian’s in the hunt for the best points finish of his career. He was 15th in 2006 and is 193 points from the $1 million bonus awarded to the highest-finishing non-Chase driver.

+ In the United Racing Fantasy Football League, AJ’s team is off to a 1-0 start behind the stellar play of (no, not Brett Favre) Tony Romo.

+ Brian would gladly accept the role of Chase spoiler. He has finished eighth or better at eight of the final 10 tracks.

+ Before visiting Sunday’s Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix, Scott Speed has ARCA business to attend to Saturday in Salem, Ind., where he finished fifth in April. He holds a 50-point lead with four races to go.

At Loudon: Weather permitting, the Red Bull Toyotas will take to the flat, 1.058-mile track for practice today at noon ET, with qualifying set for 3:10 p.m.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, I could be wrong, but I'm pretty sure when the changes were made to the chase, and the format was adjusted to put the Top 12 in the Chase, it was said that in doing so, there would no longer be a $1 Million bonus prize for the top finishing non-chaser. That they were doing away with awarding a non-chaser, especially since they gave 2 additional drivers a shot at the Chase. Sorry to burst anyone's bubble if I'm right. Definitely something you should check in to more thoroughly before getting so excited about it.

9:06 AM  
Anonymous tracy said...

Yeah, that was my understanding too. I remember that coming up when Casey was trying to get to 13th last year. The top non-chaser used to also get to go to the banquet, but I don't think they do that anymore either. Unless they have added that as a bonus to the guys that missed the Chase.

And now we all know what Brian is actually doing when he's sitting in his car with his laptop. He's watching TV shows. LOL (And that was a joke by the way, just so I don't offend someone by suggesting that Brian isn't doing his job.)

And continuing a discussion from the last post, I would absolutely LOVE to see AJ stay with Red Bull. He has been a loyal driver for them, and I think he wants to continue that.

I also don't fault Red Bull for deciding to go in another direction if they do. The reason I am so upset is that they are doing it at such a late date. By this time, the guys need to have their ride locked up for next season.

As far as Ganassi goes, it isn't so much that the equipment isn't there. Because obviously the whole Dodge camp is struggling. I just don't like the way that Chip and Felix handle things sometimes.

And as far as the sponsorship goes - yeah, Target is a wonderful and loyal sponsor that will probably always be there for Ganassi. But as of right now, that is their only sponsor for next year. So who does the second car get? If they have trouble getting a full time sponsor, who is to say they won't pull the plug mid-season again.

And I also wouldn't be surprised to see the 41 car out of the top 35 by the end of the year. It is not safe by any means, and there is already talk of Reed bolting early.

9:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

AJ is also fighting for his job, unless ya'll know something we are not privy to.
We also would very gladly like to see BV take on the part of chase spoiler. It would be a great way to wrap the last 10 races to get a couple wins.

9:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i also heard a rumor that ganassi was in talks with mwr about merging a while back. i don't think that will happen, but i bet toyota is looking pretty attractive to some of the dodge owners. plus, i think dodge is pulling out of the truck series. i think it forshawdows things to come...

9:34 AM  
Anonymous tracy said...

Brian has absolutely no luck whatsoever. I hate to see that team slipping backwards after such a strong start. I'm sure his backup car is as good as the primary, but still.

The only positive is that he wrecked so early in practice that they might be able to get it out for a few mock qualifying runs so he can get a decent pit stall if nothing else.

Come on Team Red Bull - we're going for a points win in 2008!!!!!

9:38 AM  
Anonymous Jason in PA said...


I totally agree with you wanting AJ here. I do also. But, in all fairness to AJ, how bad does this look? They are stringing him along like an ex-girlfriend, while courting Scott Speed in front of his face. Even if RBRT says we'll sign u to an extension, how stable would you believe your job and relationship is after sucha public, humiliating wait and see...

Personally, If I could hand pick a ride for AJ (realistically now) it would be a 4th JGR car. I really would like to keep AJ in a Toyota... But I don't see them expanding. There is always Waltrip's #44, but I itnhk McDowell is a pretty good racecar deive and MWR would be silly to give up on him so soon like RBRT is on AJ. That's counter productive... There is always the oft-rumored 2nd car for Bill Davis. But they can't get one car situated, let alone a second. Lastly, there is athe 96- which is supposed to be Coleman's next season... But that management seems to be HORRIBLE- It's incredibly stupid of them to put Logano in the car, that is NOT helping that team for the future... I guarantee you there is only a '96' slapped on that car right now, rest assured that car is not a HOF prepared racecar, Gibbs for sure supplied them a high end racecar for the prodigy...

I digress... I still think realitically the #41 is the most sense if Red Bull pulls the plug, for better or for worse.

AJ could always hook on with a studly NNS team next season and build back up- but no one wants to see that.

Other possibilities are DEI, maybe Dale Jr's startup program will be 2 teams (completely speculation on my part that Junior will bring Kesolowski to Cup with the next 2 years), but maybe AJ could roll a second JR motorsports Chevy next season, and come back up to the Sprint Cup Series in 2010 with that team... Who knows...

I just want this to be resolved already!

10:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like there might be some more storylines now that practice is over.
I too hate to see the 83 falling back after such a good start to the year.

10:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We need a little help this weekend since practice looked horrible!!

11:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neither car looks very good right now.

11:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Friday Practice for the Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is over, the fastest:
#07-Bowyer 130.273
#48-Johnson 130.153
#18-Busch 130.104
#26-McMurray 129.980
#12-Newman 129.918
slowest: #46-Long 124.361 and #34-Raines 126.312
incidents: #83-Vickers car snapped out of line and smacked the inside wall, he will go to a backup car; before he got a lap in the books, #45-McCumbee wrecked and will go to a backup

11:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It might be the same story with BV next year. Red Bull has too many athletes and too many sponsored events. "Contract extension" might be at the bottom of their To-Do list. I'm getting tired of coming to the blog, to be honest. It's been the same topic for 2 months and the comment section has turned into Jayski (quite freaking annoying I have to say).

Another week goes by and AJ still hasn't heard a word from the big boss.

11:45 AM  
Blogger Nomar said...

Wow, I'm glad Curt said it so I didn't have to. The blog is just repetitive mumbo jumbo, and please, before you say "Well if you don't like it, you don't have to read it or respond..."

I've been coming here since the beginning of the season last year..and it just seemed last year's blogs were chock full of information and stuff, but this years is "OMG, LOOK AT HOW GOOD SCOTT SPEED IS..." and "LOL, MOTORCYCLES AND CARS"

For those fans leaving when AJ leaves, that's commendable of you. I'm a Vickers fan through and through, but Joey Lagono is looking awfully tempting right now.

2:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't even talk about Joey Lagono on this page. I can't stand him, he is way to cocky for doing nothing in the Cup Series. Lets keep this site for the Red Bull drivers only and not bring in other ones.

2:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a BV fan through and through too and if you truly are too you won't change drivers because of RBRT. You will stick with BV because he's your driver and if RBRT doesn't figure out Nascar one day BV will tire of them too. But for now let's just hope that they get it soon enough, for BV's sake.

2:27 PM  
Anonymous Natalie said...

During an interview with ESPN during what would have been qualifying BV said that he was all signed for 2009 and that was all he knew about anything, including if there would be three cars or not. His answer for that question was for them to talk to Jay. At least one driver is back for next year, lets just hope that AJ will be back too.

2:38 PM  
Anonymous 83fanatic said...

What kind of BV fan leaves because he doesn't like how the team deals with another driver!! Not a real fan for sure...Sliced bread...please! Go be a fan of a guy who hasn't done a thing! I want AJ to stay as much as anyone, but it is their call-it is their money, and personally I don't think they are ready for a 3rd team yet. I am done coming here and reading the whining and trash.

2:51 PM  
Blogger Nomar said...

Just the freakout I'd expect from this board. I meant Joey as my 2nd driver instead of AJ. Besides, I've already spent too much money on 83 merchandise as it is anyway. ;-)

3:34 PM  
Anonymous savannah david said...

My predictions for 2009 - - BV in the 83, of course. - - AJ in the 84 with a one year extention, and if he does well enough RBRT will sign him for a longer contract. - - SS to run a 3rd car from the RBRT stable with partial sponsorship from an outside entity, with the idea that SS will go full time in the Cup Series in 2010. - - This just seems to make sense. I only hope Jay Frye is around to run the show in the long run.

4:56 PM  
Blogger theonlynick said...

You know, the more I think about it, the better Ganassi sounds. I still dig the 84 team, but Ganassi is on the rebound, and he also has "other" rides available such as the Touring Series and IRL. It's hard to overlook that.

6:23 PM  
Anonymous Jason from PA said...

Savannah-- what good is a 1 year deal when the team has not shown vote of confidence-

I agree that the AJ saga is beating a dead horse- but the more time goes by, us true AJ fans have very little else to discuss. We don't even know if he will be a sprint cup driver next season... The whole thing sucks- It's hard to look at Ganassi or any other team as a glass half full situation--- I think we all feel he deserves better-

Maybe we weill get some answers this weekend!

7:41 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

You guys need to stop complaining you are making this blog suck. It is the same thing every day.

About AJ contact Red Bull knows what it is doing. You all assume Red Bull just does not get NASCAR and contract situations. Look back at when BV was signed to come to Red Bull it was June. They know what they are doing and they are still evaluating AJ no matter how obsessed some of you guys are with AJ he still is only 34th in points and has not put the 84 car solidly in the top 35. If AJ was 27th in points I am sure he would have been resigned already but he is not.

7:43 AM  
Anonymous tracy said...

I apologize to those who are tired of the venting, but I have nowhere else to go to vent about AJ, so you can skip my posts if you want to.

I have nothing against Scott. In fact, if Scott gets in Cup he would be someone that I would pull for. I just think that pulling AJ out and putting him in is a mistake. And if AJ only gets a one year extension out of Red Bull, I hope he starts talking to other teams as soon as possible next year.

As far as him only getting that car to 34th in points, lets take a look and see how much of that is driver, shall we?

Talladega - Qualified 4th & stayed out of trouble until the accident on the last lap.

Richmond 1 - Ran in top 20 all night until he had a brake failure

Darlington - Had both clutch problems and brake problems and still came home 27th

All-Star Showdown - Won, beating out guys who are currently in the top 15 in points (Ragan, Kahne, and Vickers)

Charlotte 1 - Top 20

Dover 1 - Ran in the top 20 until a Fuel Pump Cable broke

Pocono 1 - 12th

Michigan 1 - Top 20

Sonoma - Electrical problems

Loudon 1 - Oil Line Clamp came off

Daytona - Blew a tire because he was a go or go homer and it was an impound race.

Chicago - 13th

Indianapolis - 10th

Pocono 2 - Top 20

Watkins Glen - 11th

Michigan 2 - This race and the second Pocono are the only two where the team really struggled.

Bristol - Wrong place, wrong time

California - 14th

Richmond 2 - Engine problem

So someone please tell me why his being only in 34th position is a driver issue. Tell me exactly how Scott Speed would have fared better than AJ did given the same situation.

Oh, and Jason - I agree with everything you said. And I hope Gibbs thinks about expanding to 4 in 2010 and tabs AJ for that ride. That has been my fondest hope. Also if Stewart Haas expands to 3, that would be a quality ride. I'd hate the go or go home status again, but I'd deal with it.

8:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

On another note, the two practice sessions looked better than yesterday, so hopefully Sunday will be a good day where BV stays in the top 15 in points and AJ builds a bigger cushion on the top 35.

11:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes I hope redbull makes a decision soon about AJ because frankly im sick of all the complaining in here, this is a redbull blog not an AJ blog. On a better note hell of a job for redbull in Formula 1 with 3 redbulls in the top 4 for Manza. Vettel taking the pole for the first time for him and a redbull car in Formula 1. Good luck to redbull at Manza and good luck to redbull nascar this weekend, hopefully the teams can better their cars after weak practices. Good luck.

4:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, Sebastian Vettel won for Toro Rosso!

6:40 AM  

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