S.M.'s Craftsman Update (Issue No. 14)

Horn FanSenior Writer IOctober 15, 2008


SS Greenlight Racing will have Johnny Sauter driving its No. 07 ASILimited/Akzo Nobel/Spectrum Metal Finishing Chevrolet Silverado and Ryan Lawler will be driving the No. 08 Gunbroker.com Dodge Ram at Martinsville in the Kroger 200.

Jason White will be driving the No. 15 Billy Ballew Motorsports Toyota at Martinsville with Gunbroker.com as sponsor.

Sean Caisse will be making his truck race debut, driving the No. 9 Germain Racing Toyota Tundra at Martinsville and he's rumored to have a full-time ride with the team in 2009.

Russ Dugger will be making his truck race debut, driving the No. 89 Duct Seal Technologies/"Damn Good Jerky" Chevrolet for Lafferty Motorsports at Martinsville.

Dustin Skinner, the youngest son of Mike Skinner, will be making his truck series debut at Martinsville. He'll be driving the No. 03 Germain Racing Toyota Tundra, the truck will have a pink ribbon on the hood and no sponsor on it.

Robert Bruce will be making his truck debut, driving the No. 73 Taylor Race Products/Mid Atlantic Wrecker Service Dodge for Derrick Cope at Martinsville.

Hermie Sadler will be driving the No. 48 DirecTV/TNA Wrestling with associate sponsor Acredale Vending, Co. Chevrolet for Andy Hillenburg's Fast Track Racing at Martinsville.

Jamie McMurray will be driving the No. 09 Zaxby Ford at Martinsville for Roush-Fenway Racing. His last truck race was in 2004 at Martinsville and he won the Kroger 200 that day.

Kevin Harvick's No. 2 KHI truck will have You Crate on it as primary sponsor and no announcement yet who's driving the truck in the other races and which races.

Sam Hornish Jr., will have Penske Truck Rental as sponsor on the BHR-VA. No. 4 truck.

Johnny Benson's No. 23 BDR Toyota Tundra will not have a sponsor on it at Martinsville.



                                               Speed TV's Lack of Coverage

I found this great article on-line http://dalyplanet.blogspot.com/2008/10/craftsman-truck-teams-steamed-at-speed.html

It's a great read, about Speed's lack of coverage on existing NASCAR shows about the NCTS, no shows supporting the series and it's important since they show the series exclusively.

Which is too bad, since they have built a great team to cover the races. Krista Voda does a decent job with the NCTSSetup, Rick Allen's awesome calling the races, with Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip. Ray Dunlap and Adam Alexander on pit road along with Krista on pit road and they do a great job covering it.

They do a really great job, even think they are better and think better than a couple of networks. DW could learn something from his little brother Mikey when it comes to announcing.

Speed could get rid of Wreck's on Thursday night, add a weekly show leading into the race weekends pairing, Phil Parsons and Krista Voda together. Then featuring the drivers, crew members, news in the series for the week and add a what to do segment for the area for the fans to visit while attending the race.

Another show they could do pair up the following: Ray Allen, Ray Dunlap, with crew chief Rick Ren and Todd Bodine. Then get indepth with the trucks, explaining them, talk about the previous race and get into the statistical stuff on the show.

Think both are a step for Speed to feature the series more, with its own shows and put the series front and center on their website. It's currently hidden, which shouldn't be the case since they exclusively carry every race.

While I've always followed the series, watching the races if I was home and wasn't working. This year is the first full season that I have planned my life around the races.

I'm lovin' every moment of it, really feel it's the best show in NASCAR and like it better than the Sprint Cup races.

It also will be interesting to see with Scott Speed going to Sprint Cup, by passing the Nationwide Series. Give it a year or two, how many other young stars follow him to Cup by passing the series.

It's time for Speed TV to realize just what they have and give it the coverage it deserves.


Shrub Sighting

The Shrub will be driving the No. 51 Miccosukee Resorts/NOS Energy Drink Toyota for Billy Ballew Motorsports at Martinsville.

Then he'll be driving the No. 18 M&M's Toyota for JGR. Be interesting to see if his truck finish is better than the Cup finish.


Speed Bump

Well the ARCA finale was a shocker, just sad to watch a kid race so dirty taking out the Speed Demon. Be interesting how it effects Ricky Stenhouse Jr.'s career and how it affects the series.

The Speed Demon will be driving the No. 22 Red Bull Toyota Tundra at Martinsville.

It will be awesome to watch him in the No. 84 Red Bull Toyota Camry making his Sprint Cup debut at the historic Martinsville Speedway. Really like the pairing with Jimmy Elledge as his crew chief.


Upcoming Races

Oct. 18 - Kroger 200 at Martinsville Speedway on Speed at 2:30 PM (Saturday)

Oct. 25 - Atlanta 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Speed at 1 PM (Saturday)

Oct. 31 - Chevy Silverado 350K at Texas Motor Speedway on Speed at 8:30 PM (Saturday)


Top Five Picks for Martinsville

1. Ron Hornaday - He's the king of the short track racing and leads CTS with 18 short track wins. Has momentum on his side, wants to win his fourth title, be the first repeat champion and picking him to win at Martinsville.

2. Johnny Benson - He'll be once again point racing Hornaday, use pit strategy to get up front if he doesn't qualify well and could see him up front vying for the win.

3. The Shrub - He'll qualify up front and be there all day, hopefully he doesn't effect the points battle and he'll be there trying to pass for the win on the last lap.

4. Matt Crafton - back on a short track, should have a really good race and could see him up front vying for the win.

5. Erik Darnell - He's been on a roll the last half of the season, each race he's qualifying  up front and running really good. Could see him winning on Saturday afternoon, should Mr. Hornaday not have the truck to win.

The Speed Demon is my sleeper pick for Martinsville. After the Bristol race, it would not surprise me to see him win the pole and win at the historic track.


NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Point Standings

1. Ron Hornaday                  3027

2. Johnny Benson                  -39

3. Matt Crafton                   -218

4. Todd Bodine                    -236

5. Erik Darnell                      -256

6. Mike Skinner                    -258

7. Rick Crawford                  -336

8. Jack Sprague                  -489

9. Dennis Setzer                 -503

10. Terry Cook                   -567


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