Showing posts with label Fontana. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Fontana. Show all posts

Thursday, March 20, 2014

NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Auto Club Speedway (Fontana)

Track Classification: Superspeedway
Similar Tracks: Daytona International Speedway • Indianapolis Motor Speedway 
Michigan International Speedway • Pocono Raceway • Talladega Superspeedway
Distance: 2 Miles

Drivers with Most Top 10s :
By Race
All with 4 - Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards, Greg Biffle and Kurt Busch
All with 3 -  Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick and Ryan Newman

By Track
All with 4 - Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson and Ryan Newman
All with 3 - Tony Stewart, Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards. Matt Kenseth, Clint Bowyer, Kasey Kahne and Greg Biffle

Recent Pole Winners: 
2013 & 2012 Denny Hamlin

The Likely Suspects: Superspeedway racing may not possess the nail-biting, anxiety-producing brand of racing that short tracks create, but they sure are fast. Don't be surprised if you find these drivers taking the high line and finishing well: Jimmie Johnson, Greg Biffle, Kevin Harvick, Ryan Newman, Kyle Busch and Carl Edwards.

My 2 Cents: When pondering your picks this week, think Hendrick Motorsports, Roush Fenway Racing and Michigan International Speedway. Hendrick drivers as well as the "Roushateers" reign supreme here and MIS is most similar to this track. 

The no-brainer pick this week is once again a tie between Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch. My next choices are Joey Logano, Carl Edwards, Greg Biffle and Denny Hamlin. I will complete my team with Kyle Larson and Danica Patrick. Kevin Harvick and Matt Kenseth are also decent picks this week. 

When doing your final picks keep in mind that in nearly 60% of the races here the winner has come from the top 10 positions.

Enjoy the race! Post your comments here or email me at

Thursday, March 21, 2013

NASCAR Fantasy Fusion: Fontana

Track Classification: Superspeedway

Similar Tracks: Daytona International Speedway • Indianapolis Motor Speedway 
Michigan International Speedway • Pocono Raceway • Talladega Superspeedway

Distance: 2 Miles

Drivers with Most Top 10s :
By Race
Jimmie Johnson - 5
All with 4 - Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards, Matt Kenseth, Tony Stewart and Kevin Harvick
All with 3 - Greg Biffle, Kurt Busch and Ryan Newman

By Track
Jimmie Johnson - 6
Both with 5 - Tony Stewart and Kevin Harvick
All with 4 - Clint Bowyer, Kurt Busch and Carl Edwards

Recent Pole Winners: 
2012 Denny Hamlin
2011 Juan Pablo Montoya
The Likely Suspects: Superspeedway racing should be more competitive in this new Gen 6 car, but I don't think it will greatly improve performance for drivers who haven't excelled in the past. Look for these drivers to take command during Sunday's race: Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick and Greg Biffle.

My 2 Cents: The no-brainer pick this week is Jimmie Johnson, followed closely by Kyle Busch. My next picks are Kevin Harvick, Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards and Ryan Newman. I will complete my team with Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and A.J. Allmendinger. If you are feeling generous and risky, Tony Stewart usually does well here, however Stewart-Haas is having a troublesome start to the season. I'd go with Kasey Kahne for the "off the beaten path" pick - at least he has momentum on his side.

Enjoy the race! Post your comments here or email me at

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Under the Spotlight: Vickers Finds Luck at Fontana with Second Top 10

(Photo by Jared C. Tilton
/Getty Images Sport)

Auto Club Speedway was the site of Red Bull Racing’s first-ever top 10 finish, achieved by Brian Vickers in February 2007, and this season it is the place where Vickers earned his second top 10 since returning to racing.
Since his start in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series in 2003 at the age of 19, Vickers has achieved two career wins and 11 poles.
The 2009 season was his best to date, earning himself and Red Bull Racing a spot in the Chase with one win, four top 5s, 13 top 10s and six poles.
These days, perhaps Vickers has even more of a reason to succeed.
Last year in May, Vickers was diagnosed with multiple blood clots in his leg, lungs and finger.
It was later discovered that Vickers also had a hole in his heart, as well as May-Thurner Syndrome, a rare condition involving the formation of blood clots in the left leg.
In July, just two months after his initial diagnosis, Vickers underwent heart surgery and had a stent placed in his left leg.
Vickers missed the final 25 races of the season and there was much speculation as to when he would return to racing, if ever.
Rumors were put to rest after Vickers and Red Bull Racing announced he would return to the No. 83 Red Bull Toyota for the 2011 season.
In January, Vickers found himself back in the car for a two-day test session with teammate Kasey Kahne (driver of the No. 4 Red Bull Toyota) at Disney Speedway in Orlando.
The first five races of the season have been a bit of a rollercoaster ride for Vickers, finishing 30th or worst for three out of the five.
Vickers and the No. 83 team attribute the inconsistency to getting caught up in wrecks and an overall lack of luck.
At Sunday’s race in Fontana, things seemed to turn around when Vickers attained his second top 10 of the season.
His 8th place finish in Sunday’s race at Auto Club Speedway has moved him up seven spots in the points to 24th.
In a pre-season interview during the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Media Tour, Vickers spoke of what it was like to be out of the car, watching from the sidelines and his expectations for the upcoming season.
“ I love racing, I love what I do," Vickers said.
“I’ve been very fortunate to do it for a long time. No matter how much you love something, it’s human nature to lose sight of that sometimes and to get tired of things and grow old of things. Being able to step back and lose what you love most really makes you appreciate it. I think that’s going to show up on the race track, in my driving, my determination and my focus in a lot of things.”
So far, so good.
This weekend the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to Martinsville, where Vickers finished sixth last spring.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Pole Report: Auto Club 400 Qualifying After Little Practice

After only a half hour of delayed practice due to track conditions, Juan Pablo Montoya broke his pole-losing streak Friday at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. In 150 starts, this is Montoya’s sixth pole. At 184.270, he turned the fastest lap time of 38.992. Rounding out the top-five were Denny Hamlin, Joey Logano, Regan Smith, and Tony Stewart.
6. David Ragan
7. Jeff Burton
8. Kyle Busch
9. Ryan Newman
10. Mark Martin
11. Matt Kenseth
12. Jamie McMurray
13. Marcos Ambrose
14. David Reutimann
15. Paul Menard
16. Jimmie Johnson
17. Clint Bowyer
18. Carl Edwards
19. Brian Vickers
20. A.J. Allmendinger
21. Brad Keselowski
22. Kasey Kahne
23. Kurt Busch
24. Kevin Harvick
25. Casey Mears
26. Martin Truex Jr.
27. Trevor Bayne
28. Landon Cassill
29. Jeff Gordon
30. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
31. Dave Blaney
32. Greg Biffle
33. Michael McDowell
34. Bobby Labonte
35. Robby Gordon
36. Travis Kvapil
37. David Gilliland
38. Andy Lally
39. Ken Schrader
40. Joe Nemechek
41. Todd Bodine
42. Tony Raines
43. J.J. Yeley

Television schedule:
2 PM- Practice on Speed
4 PM- Practice on Speed
3 PM- Auto Club 400 on Fox

Photo Credit:

Richard Marx to Sing the National Anthem at Fontana

Richard Marx
For many NASCAR fans who also love and enjoy music, the singing of the National Anthem at a race is a mini-highlight in and of itself. The acts that are brought in to sing vary widely. Opinions of those singers/artists and their performances are even more numerous! This weekend in Fontana the man taking the microphone to sing the National Anthem is stirring some passionate responses. His name is Richard Marx.

Richard Marx made his mark in the music industry in the 1980s. Known for his distinctive, heartfelt ballads, his perfect-feathered hair, and heavy airplay in his heyday on MTV/VH1, Richard Marx may seem an odd choice for singing at a NASCAR race in 2011. Upon learning the news of his being the act to sing the national anthem in Fontana, I decided to take advantage of social media and flew over to Facebook. Immediately I found he had a fan page and it was well traversed and supported. I jotted down a quick note on the page, after “liking” it, of course, and left the comment. I simply stated I had heard he’d be the one singing the National Anthem in Fontana for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Race and I was pleased. I wished him well and thanked him for doing it. Within minutes my comment was “liked” by one of his fans. Within half an hour I had a private Facebook email requesting where I had learned about this! That person and I engaged in several emails that resulted in a cyber interview. I was intrigued by this woman’s fandom for a singing star I had not personally given much thought in the last 20 years. Here’s what this fan, Vasana, taught me about her favorite performer.

Vasana wrote to me, “I’ve been a fan [of Richard Marx] since I was 13. All the girls my age at the time were into New Kids On The Block and so on…but not me, I would constantly get teased about it even til this very day and I’m now 36.” Vasana recounts that it mattered not that she got/gets teased as she knows, “He’s such an amazing performer, person, and songwriter. His lyrics would put me to chills sometimes …” Vasana finds Richard Marx’ songwriting “powerful” and his talents multi-faceted.

Vasana is a dedicated fan who has seen Richard Marx in concert myriad times, most recently a couple of weeks ago. She and a friend were lucky enough to have an audience with Richard Marx when all were on their way to their cars.

“He was so nice and kind enough to spare me his time and signed ALL 16 of my CD covers! I almost died and gone to Heaven!” Vasana was thrilled when I answered her question about whether the race from Fontana would be televised. She is not a NASCAR fan, but will be tuning in to see her favorite musical act sing the National Anthem. “It will be my first time hearing him sing the National Anthem and I’m so excited! I will definitely tune in and watch Richard Marx sing the National Anthem on Sunday before the NASCAR race in Fontana, CA!! I would not miss it in the world! He will rock it!”

For those of you wondering why Richard Marx to sing the National Anthem, I say why not? Clearly he has a loyal fan base that is not unlike NASCAR fans. Loyal, passionate, long-term, and excited people who follow Richard Marx not unlike rabid NASCAR fans that feel the same about their driver. And, to Richard Marx’ credit, he is akin to many drivers I’ve heard who stay at the track until the last autograph is signed; Richard Marx seems to value his fans in quite the same way.

I always thought Richard Marx was entertaining and had good music. I’m curious to check his work out again and to see how he performs the National Anthem at the race in Fontana on Sunday. He may be great for NASCAR bringing in new viewers who could possibly stay after his performance is over. To Vasana and any other Richard Marx fans who will be tuning in to the race coverage, I say, “Welcome to NASCAR! We’re glad you’re here.”