Kentuckiana Motorsports Presented by Lucas Oil
It's been an interesting fall in the NASCAR playoffs. And it will be wild this weekend at The Roval in Charlotte! It is just not any road course! Christopher Bell won the event in 2022. He is in the playoffs and hopes a strong Charlotte finish will eventually get him to the Championship 4 at Phoenix. We should point out, Keven Harvick finished second to Bell at The Roval last fall.
Kevin Harvick almost had his first victory of 2022 at Talladega. And what a finish. A string of cars: Harvick, Blaney, LaJoie, Cindric, Byron, Elliott, and a string of others battled inches apart on the last lap. It was Blaney who got a strong push and had slightly better track position to hold off Harvick by a 12th of a second! NASCAR later disqualified Harvick's 2nd place finish (He was dropped to last place or 38th) after discovering in post-race inspection, the team failed to secure the windshield properly. It's unclear what, if any, kind of advantage the #4 car had because the fasteners securing the windshield came loose/out. With the razor thin win, Blaney joins Byron (Who won last week at Texas), as the only two drivers guaranteed a spot in the field of 8 to advance in the playoffs. The Roval is the last race before 4 more drivers get eliminated. Denny Hamlin is 50 points above the cut line and likely will advance on points. Winning locks him in. Four drivers below the cut line are in the hot seat. Kyle Busch is 26 points behind. He would likely need to win both stages at The Roval and have a top 5 finish to possibly advance. He has to be looking to win. However, road courses are not his strong suit. Wallace, Chastain, and Reddick are just above Busch, outside looking in. But the trio can make up the points at Charlotte. Brad Keselowski is two points above the cut line. It is close. And The Roval is always interesting, tense, and there is much pressure on the teams.
Louisville's Ben Rhodes drove his truck to a second-place finish at Talladega. Brett Moffitt, a regular in the Xfinity Series, entered the Craftsman Truck race at Talladega and won it! Rhodes had a chance, but his teammate and "pusher" Matt Crafton got caught up in a big wreck a few laps earlier ending his shot at a win or helping push Rhodes to victory. Rhodes is a handful of points below the truck series cut line. Homestead, Florida is the next race. Four drivers get cut after it. Ben finished 6th there last year. His team seems to have picked up a small bit of new steam. If he's getting some late season momentum, this is a good time for it to happen!
By now, most people have seen the incident (s) between truck driver's Nick Sanchez and veteran Matt Crafton. After the race, Crafton walked up to Sanchez in the garage area and laid him out with a big punch. Crafton, who had a chance to win, got caught in a huge wreck late in the race. Crafton, TV announcers, his own team, and others felt Sanchez caused the big one at Talladega. Crafton and others indicated the 22-year old Sanchez was sloppy behind the wheel all day. Crafton later apologized to his team, sponsors, and the public, but pretty much said-- enough is enough. This isn't the first time up-and-coming drivers and younger drivers have come under fire. Veteran racers from all 3 NASCAR series have lashed out at the "lack of respect" by today's younger generation. Violence isn't the answer. Do note, in the earlier days of NASCAR, such disputes were settled off the track, and in the garage area. NASCAR has firmly penalized drivers (Even suspended them) for using their cars to retaliate "on the track" or along pit road. The 47-year old Crafton took action after parking his truck. He then walked into the garage area where teams work on trucks and cars. Obviously, Crafton felt he needed to make a statement, and no doubt send a message. Crafton has won 3 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Championships.
For those keeping track! Before the playoffs we picked our Championship 4 in the NASCAR Cup Series. Craig liked: Logano, Hamlin, Busch, and a longshot but a past champion, Brad Keselowski. Scott picked: Truex Jr., Byron, Logano, and a sentimental choice-Kevin Harvick. Logano and Harvick are out!
There is still more racing at our local tracks. But time is running out to enjoy some great local racing. That includes racing at The Salem Speedway (About an hour from Louisville in Southern Indiana). Another fun place to watch racing is the Sportsdome Speedway, just off Interstate 65 in Jeffersonville, about five minutes from downtown Louisville. Other tracks have had a great year: the Ponderosa Speedway in central Kentucky at Junction City near Danville (About an hour and fifteen minutes southeast of Louisville), Beech Bend in Bowling Green (KY), and just outside of Louisville in West Point Kentucky is the Ohio Valley Dragway, a small drag strip on Dixie Highway. We always encourage you to check social media pages for updates, special discount tickets, and weather reports too!
Congrats to Jesse Love. He's dominated the ARCA Series all year. He won the ARCA 200 at Salem.
The NHRA next sees action at the Texas Metroplex October 12 through the 15. It is the Texas NHRA Fall Nationals. For a very long time Lucas Oil has backed this exciting series. You can watch the action on Fox Sports, or on Fox Sports 1 or 2. Our thoughts for a fast recovery are with NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle contender, Angie Smith. At the event in St. Louis, in the second round of qualifying she got separated from the bike after crossing the finish line at a very high rate of speed. Smith was taken to a local hospital. Doctors discovered she had two broken feet and a severe body rash. She was responding and conscious while medical professionals examined her at the track. Again, we hope Smith gets well quickly.
Kentuckiana Motorsports has continued to provide racing coverage for more than two decades. It started with a half hour program and specials on cable, then a major television channel, and as media has transformed, online and social media. Lucas Oil has been a huge part of it. They support local and grass roots. Always have. We remind you to make sure your car, truck, motorcycle, boat, other vehicles, and lawn equipment are all running efficiently. Think Lucas Oil Products. They do so much for racing communities across America. Other sponsors of KMS 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 low as $25.00 a line per month), 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, NASCAR and with NASCAR Media, Indy Car, Monster Jam, ARCA, and NHRA for helping us bring the sport to the fans!
We have a NEW FREE Lucas Oil/KMS Giveaway! Be sure to check out the KMS Giveaway page!