Tony Stewart

Earnhardt's Daytona 500 victory puts wind in NASCAR sails

Through the Gears: Four things we learned in the Daytona 500
Reaction to NASCAR's 56th annual Daytona 500 and race-winner Dale Earnhardt Jr.

 

Thirteen years after tragedy and 10 years after triumph, Dale Earnhardt Jr. pulled into Daytona 500 Victory Lane a second time. Emotions ran high in a race where a car with the slanted, stylized “3” made famous by his late father led the field to green hours earlier. No one would have blamed the driver if, soaking in the breadth of history, he simply broke down in tears.  Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Hype builds for the Daytona 500 as favorites emerge

NASCAR season begins with Hamlin, Kenseth, riding high
Pre-race favorites and storylines for NASCAR's Daytona 500.

A week of pomp and circumstance is nearly over in Daytona Beach. On the eve of NASCAR’s most prestigious race, the Daytona 500, Cup cars roar around the historic 2.5-mile superspeedway in the final practice session of the week — known as Happy Hour — looking for that last little bit of speed. Or handling. Or integrity. Or answers of some sort.

The Five Storylines to Watch in the Daytona 500

Geoffrey Miller highlights NASCAR's biggest stories for the Daytona 500
Joe Gibbs Racing, Hendrick Motorsports and the weather highlight NASCAR's five storlines to watch in the 2014 Daytona 500.

1. Joe Gibbs Racing easily the early favorites  Denny Hamlin
The sabre-rattling from the Joe Gibbs Racing camp early in Daytona Speedweeks has been impossible to avoid. Simply put: they’ve won everything, save for the Daytona 500 pole in single-lap qualifying.

Encouraging NASCAR Sprint Cup rookie crop looks to Daytona

Young hires filled with potential trump vets in "other half" of Cup garage
How this season's pack of talented NASCAR Sprint Cup Series rookies will shape up against others who have come before them in the Daytona 500.

At Daytona International Speedway, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage is split into two sections. The plum positioning — garage stalls closer to restrooms and track entry and exit — are given out based on last year’s final point standings. A quick lap around what DIS dubs the “Sprint Fan Zone” will point out the obvious: It segregates the haves and the have-nots in NASCAR’s money-making division at a time in the sport where the delineation between the two has never been greater.

NASCAR Speedweeks feature Dillon, Hamlin; more passing and more wrecking

Through the Gears: Four things we've learned during Speedweeeks
Austin Dillon on the Pole for the Daytona 500; Denny Hamlin wins the NASCR Sprint Unlimited. All the things you need to know from Daytona.

On Sunday, a black No. 3 car sat shining in the Daytona Beach sun, cameras focused on a number not seen in NASCAR Sprint Cup competition since the 2001 Daytona 500. It’s been 13 years since that tragic end, but closure has finally come — not in the form of an Earnhardt, but in 23-year-old Austin Dillon.  Austin Dillon

NASCAR Sprint Unlimited: What we learned in Daytona

Denny Hamlin wins a wild one to open NASCAR's 2014 season
Rundown and reaction from the NASCAR Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway.

Denny Hamlin is loaded for bear. The winner of the 2013 season finale in Homestead, Fla., Hamlin won all three segments of Saturday night’s Sprint Unlimited exhibition race at Daytona International Speedway in an event that unofficially kicked off NASCAR’s 2014 season.

2014 NASCAR Driver Profile: Danica Patrick

Danica looks to rebound from disastrous 2013 and into expanded NASCAR Chase field
Danica Patrick joins teammates Tony Stewart, Kurt Busch and Kevin Harvick at powerhouse Stewart-Haas Racing on the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit in 2014.

Have the GoDaddy domains been taken for “disappointing.com,” “overrated.org” and “myboyfriendkickedmybuttforrookieof…” OK, you get the picture. Danica Patrick’s rookie year on the Sprint Cup circuit peaked early, with a pole at the Daytona 500 and her only top-10 finish (eighth). She led five laps that day, and believe it or not, that was the last time she was up front for a Cup race.

2014 NASCAR Driver Profile: Tony Stewart

Stewart ready to return from injury-ridden 2013; Chase fourth NASCAR Sprint Cup title
Tony Stewart will return to NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racing for the first time since August 2013 at Daytona International Speedway.

Tony Stewart has an impeccable résumé. He’s an IndyCar Series champion, coming within a whisker of an Indy 500 victory. He’s a three-time NASCAR Cup champion, the only driver who can lay claim to a “Winston Cup,” “Nextel Cup” and “Sprint Cup” title. He’s currently tied for 13th on NASCAR’s all-time wins list with 48 Cup trophies on his shelf. Stewart is, without a doubt, one of the best drivers ever to grace North American motorsports.

2014 NASCAR Driver Profile: Kevin Harvick

Harvick looks to continue NASCAR success at Stewart-Haas Racing in 2014
After a 13-year tenure at Richard Childress Racing, Kevin Harvick transitions to Stewart-Haas Racing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

It’s hard to believe that it’s been more than a dozen years since Kevin Harvick, at age 25, was thrust into the NASCAR spotlight, handed the impossible task of mending broken hearts just days after the death of Dale Earnhardt. Harvick rose to the challenge, winning two races in 2001 and propelling himself into the top 10 in points as a rookie, despite a temper that would plague him in the early part of his career. A roller-coaster relationship with team owner Richard Childress, built in the midst of tragedy, was often tempestuous in public.

2014 NASCAR Driver Profile: Kurt Busch

Busch given another chance at Cup success at Stewart-Haas Racing
Can Kurt Busch co-exist with new teammates Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick and Danica Patrick at Stewart-Haas Racing? The 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup season will answer that question.

At first glance, Kurt Busch’s move to Stewart-Haas Racing after a season at single-car Furniture Row Racing would seem like the driver won the lottery. Busch, a former series champion, took FRR all the way to the Chase in 2013, and despite not winning a race, finished inside the top 10 in points with a season-long 14.7-place average finish. It was the first time a single-car team made the postseason under NASCAR’s Chase format, with Busch earning more top 5s in one season (11) than the team accrued during its last eight years of existence.

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