NASCAR heads west before really cranking it up to start the spring racing season. California, Vegas, and Phoenix are up before another east coast race in Atlanta. Though he may run a handful of races in 2024, this will be the last hurrah for Kevin Harvick as a full-time driver out west. Expect the Bakersville, California driver to get plenty of ovations along the way. For many years he owned Phoenix. Won just about everything there.
Before we close the book on the 65th running of the Daytona 500, lets talk a little about this years race. Yes it is a long season. Races take all different twists and turns with cautions, mother nature, and racing rules. With that said, it is past time to allow fans to see a true checkered flag at the end of races. Finishing under caution is not the way in 2023. Congrats to Ricky Stenhouse Jr. for narrowly beating Joey Logano as cars wrecked on the last lap. Fox Sports was a little weak showing tight replays of the "exact" time NASCAR called the event. And they did little to educate fans on who makes the final call, and why. It was a sellout crowd. Fans want a real finish. The ending felt like an NFL game after overtime ends, and both teams failed to score, thus the game was declared a tie. NASCAR can and must do better.
Jimmie Johnson qualified for the 500. Started in the back and worked his way to the Top 5. Was looking good late until a crash wiped out his chances. Still, a strong showing. Kyle Busch looked very good racing for Richard Childress in the #8 in his first race with a new team. And after a challenging 2022, former NASCAR Cup Champion Brad Keselowski looked stout at Daytona. Going to be interesting to watch both Kyle and Brad this season.
The NHRA season doesn't start until March 9th in Gainesville, Florida. Lucas Oil has been a long and strong partner for the NHRA. 3 time NASCAR Cup Champion Tony Stewart owns a NHRA team, as well as teams in NASCAR. In 2023 Smoke is jumping in with gusto. No, not like Johnson back into NASCAR. Tony will compete full time in the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series for McPhillips Racing in a Top Alcohol Dragster. His wife is 12-time NHRA winner, Leah Pruett. She is a Top Fuel dragster for Tony Stewart Racing. Will be fun to see Stewart, a Columbus-Indiana native, get his first win! He came ever so close n November.
Speaking of Lucas Oil, Hudson O’Neal picked up the win in the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series at the 47th Annual Wieland Winternationals in Florida. We mention this because Forrest, Charlotte, Morgan, and Katie Lucas sponsor so many tracks, drivers, events, and series across America. For more than two decades Lucas Oil has sponsored Kentuckiana Motorsports. We strongly suggested you use their products in your car, truck, boat, motorcycle, and even yard equipment. It Works! You can improve the performance by simply adding Lucas Oil products into the tank or engine. It is that simple.
In addition to Lucas Oil, other KMS Sponsors include: PNC Bank (Sponsor of Scott Dixon's Indy Car Series Car), Sportsdrome Speedway (Celebrating more than 75 years of Racing!), locally owned Bright Pest Control and Bright Retail in Louisville, (Offering Do-It-Yourself Professional Pest Products with a retail store), and Knox Ford in Radcliff, Kentucky) (It also has a sister dealership, Tri-County Ford in Oldham County, KY). KMS friends also include: VoiceTel Kentucky (Offering telephone service for $25.00 a line, and that includes all taxes and fees), Temco Roofing, Jim Ellis/Attorney At Law, ICA Dumpsters, Kentucky Raceway Ministries, Nimlok Kentucky, Dynamic Healthcare, Lyndon Mower Repair, and Kentucky Medicare Plans (Serving Kentucky and Southern Indiana with Health and Medicare plans). We also thank our media connections in all series, especially NASCAR and with NASCAR Media for helping us bring the sport to the fans!
It is a tough time now for our farmers, ranchers, and those who work in animal agriculture. Check out the Lucas Oil backed Protect the Harvest . It supports those who work and love the outdoors. Learn more: www.protecttheharvest.com
Enjoy the racing!