• NASCAR Birthdays

    Born in APRIL

    18 Geoff Bodine, Tyler Labonte, Kale Kahne, Melanie Self

    19 Robert Yates, Richard Yates, Jack Roush, Greg Erwin, Kevin Grubb, Al Unser Jr., Aaron Keuhn

    20 Frank Stoddard, James Barnwell, Ron Barfield, Adrian Fernandez, Dustin Skinner, James Barnwell

    21 Bruce Silver, Bill Ingle, Greg Zipadelli, Bob Varsha

    22 Raygan Swan, Stella Paysor, Wesley Gantt

    23 Brian Whitesell, Jason Keller, Phil Gould, Joe Keller, Skip Manning, Terry Glotzbach, P.J. Jones, Tommy Croft, Charles Gafrarar, William Shakespeare, Jacob Meetze

    24 Hermie Sadler, Harrill Hamrick, Stephanie Hillin, Amanda Lorenzen

    25 Alkie Cunningham

    26 Martha Oliver, Jimmy Kitchens, Eva Busch

    27 Shelly Bose, Jason Haynes, Jason Sheets

    28 Tyler Hmiel, Jeff Neuendorf

    29 Dale Earnhardt, Larry Frank, Angie Skinner, Chad Little, Jerry Schweitz, Alexandria Fennig

    30 Michael Waltrip, Elliott Sadler, Andy Hillenburg, Joe Millikan, Amelia Joy Smith, Chris Browning, Ashton Glover, Frank Kimmel

    Born in MAY

    1 Randy Dorton, Johnny Sauter, Jimmy Parrott

    2 Ed "Uncle Bud" Adamczyk, Kyle Busch

    3 Greg Ely

    4 Randy Tolsma, Bobby Burrell, Jennifer Eolin

    5 Larry Pollard, Bob Welborn

    6 Mike Borkowski, Tammy Jo Kirk, Jeff Hancock, Dean Mozingo

    7 Dave Steele, Danny O'Quinn Jr.

    8 Bobby Labonte, Nathan Buttke, Don Hume, Jay Stewart, Judy Childress

    9 Tim Fedewa, Scott Page

    10 Amelia Andretti, Andy Rueger

    11 Glenn Bobo, Tim Flock, NASCAR Hall of Fame

    12 Jabe Thomas, Debra Adamczyk

    13 Rich Bickle, Scott Eggleston, Bob Kennedy, Jim Spencer, Linda McReynolds, Kirk Almquist, Maggie Feeney Rossi

    14 Steve Letarte, Bill Brooks, Dave Munari, Danielle Del Corio, Scott Lynch

    15 Shane Hmiel, John Hubner

    16 Josh Walker

    17 Mike Shiplett, Craig Ferguson, Kevin Pennell

    18 Mike Motil

    19 Dario Franchitti, Jody Ridley, Danny Culler

    20 Tony Stewart, Steve Portenga, Dave Despain, Eric Norris

Fast Facts ….Sunday’s Race at Talladega

  • Johnson wins at Talladega: #48-Jimmie Johnson won the Aaron’s 499 Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway for his 1st win of 2011, and the 54th of his career. Johnson, #33-Bowyer, and #24-Gordon came across the finish line 3 wide, with Johnson .002 seconds ahead of Bowyer and .039 second ahead of Gordon. The finish ties Ricky Craven’s 2003 Darlington win as the closest finish since electronic timing was implemented.
    #88-Earnhardt, Jr. finished 4th, #29-Harvick, #99-Edwards, #16-Biffle, #5-Martin, #34-Gilliland, and #20-Logano.
    There were 88 lead changes among 26 drivers; 6 cautions for 24 yellow flag laps.
    The attendance is listed as 115,000, down from last years 123,500.
    **Scheduled Race Re-Air: SPEED, Wednesday, April 20 at 12:00pm/et

  • Race Fast Facts – Talladega:
    Jimmie Johnson won the 42nd Annual Aaron’s 499 , his 54th victory in 335 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
    This is his first victory and fifth top-10 finish in 2011.
    This is his second victory and ninth top-10 finish in 19 races at Talladega Superspeedway.
    Clint Bowyer (second) posted his fifth top-10 finish in 11 races at Talladega Superspeedway. It is his fourth top-10 finish in 2011.
    Jeff Gordon (third) posted his 18th top-10 finish in 37 races at Talladega Superspeedway.
    Andy Lally (19th) was the highest finishing rookie.
    Carl Edwards leads the point standings by 5 points over Jimmie Johnson.
    The margin of victory of 0.002 ties the closest margin of victory (Darlington – 3/16/2003) since the advent of electronic scoring in 1993.
    The 88 lead changes ties the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series all-time record of lead changes set at Talladega (4/25/2010).

  • Two records tied at Talladega: Sunday’s Aaron’s 499 at Talladega Superspeedway tied two Sprint Cup Series records – number of lead changes and closest margin of victory. There were 88 lead changes at the start/finish line, tying an all-time NASCAR record set in last season’s April event at Talladega. The final lead change occurred on the last lap – eight of the last 12 Talladega races featured a last-lap lead change. Jimmie Johnson edged Clint Bowyer by .002 seconds, which matches the closest margin of victory since the inception of electronic scoring in May 1993. That mark was originally set at Darlington Raceway on March 16, 2003, with Ricky Craven beating Kurt Busch. Since 1993, every race at Talladega finishing under green – 29 in all – has had a MOV under .400 seconds. Passing numbers – for the lead and otherwise – also were high. There were 159 green flag passes for the lead all around the race track, with a total of 11,025 green flag passes throughout the field.

  • Big George finally gets wish, but after he dies….

    Mike Harmon was standing at the garage gate Thursday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, waiting for clearance to begin work on his Nationwide Series car, when a random lady approached with a bewildering request. She introduced herself as Mara Brodeur, an ardent race fan from Medford, Ore., who was camping in the infield with a group of friends for the race. But one of those friends was missing — Big George. George Helms was a diehard. He loved NASCAR, dreamed of someday attacking the high-banks at Daytona or Bristol or Darlington. But he never got that chance. They called him Big George for a reason. He stood 6-foot-5 and weighed 400 pounds and thus couldn’t fit in a racecar. So when Big George died last December — of a heart attack at age 54 — Mara set out to make certain his dream didn’t die, too. “They had his ashes in an urn and wanted me to ride him around the racetrack,” Harmon said, with a chuckle, as he stared at the ground as if to deflect the attention. As a whole, racecar drivers are a superstitious lot. Not many guys would do this, but Harmon has his reasons. He’s cheated death. At Bristol Motor Speedway in 2002, Harmon narrowly escaped death in a crash during practice that Kenny Wallace called “the worst wreck in NASCAR history.” And then there was history. Harmon was moved by a tribute performed by Top Fuel drag racer Brandon Bernstein at Bristol Dragway, when he placed the ashes of a fan in the parachute of his car during a race. So he took the urn and taped it to the fire extinguisher of his car, and there it rode for the entire practice session Friday afternoon. Afterwards, overcome with emotion, Big George’s friends hugged Mike and thanked him for making Big Georges Dream come True.