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KANSAS CITY, KS. - There's been a lot of talk this weekend about the proposed second date coming to Kansas Speedway in the wake of a new hotel and casino complex being built on track property.

The new facility should be ready by 2010 or early 2011 and would be the latest addition to this sprawling area that has grown by leaps and bounds since the track first opened its gates in 2001.

Yes, the new date will have to come from somewhere and true since this is an ISC track a race from one of the company's other properties would be harvested.

But that talk can wait. First is the question of should NASCAR bring its top series to Kansas City two times a year.

The short answer is yes.

Kansas City is in the heartland and draws fans from a five and six state surrounding area. The closest track on the Cup schedule is its sister speedway in Chicagoland, an eight hour drive to the north and east.

Kansas, Iowa, Colorado, Missouri and Minnesota fans call Kansas Speedway their home track.

And until a facility is erected in the Denver area, Kansas will serve a great need for NASCAR to reach this area of the country.

There's another good reason for Kansas to have a second date. There's a little company right down the road from the track called Sprint which pnies up a pretty penny to sponsor NASCAR's premier division.

If the sport's top corporate partner is happy with two dates in its backyard, and by all accounts Sprint is backing this possibility, NASCAR's should oblige.

Kansas sells out for its NASCAR and IRL weekends, which granted come in the form of a season ticket package in which patrons much purchase both events. That's more that can be said for some other facilities on the Cup schedule.

I don't want to see Martinsville lose a race and fans who fret that scenario shouldn't believe a second date at Kansas is a doomsday decision for the beloved short track. There are many other dominos that could fall for weekend number two to land in Kansas.

But I'm for it and this track and these fans have shown the support is here.

A second weekend will be here as well in two years.

  • Any hope Kyle busch had of getting back into the Chase were gone in Kansas just like dust in the wind (sorry). It is hard to figure out how the No. 18 team could have been so bullet-proof during the regular season and then have three straight mechanical problems scar its start to the Chase. I still think Busch will win one race in the next seven but that's obviously small consolation in the wake of his dream season falling apart.

  • We talked a lot on "The Backstretch" show Saturday night on Sirius NASCAR Radio about Tony Stewart's season and whether a loss of focus was the reason he has been winless in 2008. There's no doubt Stewart has had a lot on his plate with securing his future and starting a new team while still piloting the Home Depot Toyota, but more than anything it's been just a case of a constant flow of bad luck. Week after week something seems to go wrong for Stewart and at this point, he surely wants a win to end his career at JGR but has to be counting the days until the end of the season.

  • Martin Truex, Jr. has to feel like the Lone Ranger at DEI these days. Despite a good qualifying effort by Mark Martin and Paul Menard, the rest of Truex, Jr.'s teammates disappeared once the green flag flew Sunday and then the No. 1 car was sidelined with an odd shifter problem. Truex, Jr. will be back at DEI in 2009 but there are still strong vibes he'll have a new address come 2010.
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    Monster Energy NASCAR Cup, 2008

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