Inextel Media Tour/I: Day Two
January 24, 2006 | 1:41 P.M. EST
The first stop of the busy day was at RYR, as teammates Dale Jarrett and Elliott Sadler addressed the crowd.
The team will once again field a Busch Series car with primary sponsorship from CitiFinancial. Sadler will pilot the car for 16 races while newcomers Stephen Leicht, the 2005 ASA Late Model Series champion, and Matt McCall will also share time.
UPS and Masterfoods also announced some of the upcoming promotions for both RYR cars.
Jarrett will finally race the truck in 2006, as UPS has created the P-800 Racetruck (pictured) that will be used in commercials this season. The media got a sneak peak at one commercial spot that has Sadler behind the wheel of the truck. The specially made truck features a 514 cubic-inch factory constructed Ford SVO motor that generates 620 horsepower and 700 pounds of torque.
M&M’s – Masterfoods – announced that Snickers will make a return as a primary sponsor of the No. 38 for a select number of races. Along with running the traditional yearly M&M paint schemes, i.e. Halloween, the No. 38 will sport a special movie scheme this summer.
The tour moved on to the new facility for MB2 Motorsports, where the NEXTEL Cup Series' senior teammates, Joe Nemechek and Sterling Marlin, talked about their hopes for the coming season.
The 144,000-square foot MB2 complex, which was completed last October, is more than three times the space of their old shop in Concord, N.C.
A lunchtime visit to Joe Gibbs Racing gave the media an opportunity to talk with Denny Hamlin and J.J. Yeley, who will drive JGR's FedEx Chevy and Interstate Batteries Chevy, respectively. Reigning NEXTEL Cup champion Tony Stewart and his Home Depot Chevy team were not able to be present as they were taking part in a ceremony at the White House with President George W. Bush recognizing the 2005 NASCAR Champion.
Lowe's Motor Speedway's plans for a complete repaving were announced on Tuesday afternoon. The $3 million resurfacing project will include work that speedway officials are calling an "attitude adjustment."
"We are going to remold the track to take some of the meaness out of it," said H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, president and general manager of LMS. "This is one of the meanest tracks on the NEXTEL Cup circuit and by that I mean it can bite you when you least expect it."
The repaving comes after the speedway's unsuccessful attempt to "levigate" the track last year, a smoothing process that backfired into two NEXTEL Cup events that set records for caution flags and laps. The fall UAW-GM 500 was marred by a series of frightening accidents that saw driver after driver suffer blown tires before ending up in the wall.
Wheeler said the track spent several months consulting with engineers and motorsports industry insiders before deciding on a final resurfacing plan.
The day concluded with Toyota announcing that they will have three teams for the 2007 season. Complete Story with Car Pictures
RacingOne will have more coverage of day three of the NASCAR NEXTEL Media Tour presented by Lowe's Motor Speedway tomorrow.