Tag:Kevin Conway
Posted on: February 29, 2012 5:15 pm
Edited on: February 29, 2012 5:17 pm

Kevin Conway helps solve hit and run case

By Pete Pistone

A tragic hit and run accident outside the Chicago area forever changed the lives of the Lech family.

But in a small way NASCAR driver Kevin Conway has helped the family cope with the grief of losing a loved one by helping identify the man who killed Melissa Lech.

Conway and the Nemco Motorsports team started featuring local missing persons cases on the back of his car in 2011 as a way to connect with NASCAR fans and the local communities supporting the races.

His car featured information about the Lech case when Conway competed at Chicagoland Speedway last September.

It led to David McCarthy to show up at Lech's sister's house in Joliet, Illinois and admit he was responsible for striking and killing the 20-year-old college student.

McCarthy said he had seen reports about the case on local news as well as information surrounding Conway's car during the September Chase opener held at Chicagoland Speedway.

He admitted his guilt and turned himself in as a result and Conway is thrilled his effort could help bring justice.

“We have so many fans around the country, millions of people watching on TV and thousands in attendance,” Conway told The Chicago Sun-Times. “We wanted to use the platform that NASCAR gives us to tie it back into the community.”

Conway did have a chance to meet the Lech family while in Joliet and hopes the arrest can bring closure.

“I’ve lost my sister and my father,” he said. “I know what personal grief is like. To know they will be able to work through it from this point forward.

“It’s kind of mixed emotions — I’m glad this worked but still feel for the Lech family and their loss.”

Conway hopes that other stories will also come from the effort.

“For us to play a small part in solving one of these cases and to help bring closure — it’s humbling, and it’s a great honor to be affiliated with that and to play a role in that,” Conway told the paper.

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Category: Auto Racing
Posted on: March 8, 2011 6:34 am

Conway responds to Gordon altercation

Posted By Pete Pistone

Kevin Conway issued a statement in response to his physical altercation Friday night in the las Vegas Motor Speedway garage area:

"I don't mind stiff competition, but I want to make sure the hard facts are told. First and foremost, I love being a part of NASCAR and have worked very hard to earn the privilege of competing in the Sprint Cup Series. On Friday night, Robby Gordon, who has a long history of issues in NASCAR decided to ambush me in the garage area at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, completely unprovoked. Robby even confronted Joe Nemechek, my car owner, on pit road during Cup Series qualifying shoving him and telling him that he was looking for me and going to assault me. We have many witnesses including a crew chief that signed a police report documenting the truth of his physical attack on me. Situations like this are not good for our sport. It's one thing if we were racing each other and I wrecked him or he wrecked me, that's an entirely different situation. It's very unfortunate that he chose to physically attack me to address his rage. Our fans, sponsors and NASCAR expect and deserve more from our competitors than this bullish, illegal behavior that was displayed by Robby against me."

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Posted on: March 5, 2011 2:26 pm
Edited on: March 5, 2011 2:26 pm

Gordon, Conway fight in Vegas

Posted by Pete Pistone

The bad blood between Robby Gordon and Kevin Conway reportedly spilled over to a fight in the Las Vegas Motor Speedway garage area Friday afternoon.

The result of the fracas has Gordon on probation and Conway awaiting the wrath of NASCAR as well.

“Robby’s been put on probation – we’ll let everybody know for how long on Tuesday,” NASCAR Vice President of Competition Robin Pemberton said. “This doesn’t give Conway a free pass, either.”

The two are involved in a legal battle after being involved together on last year's Sprint Cup Series.

Gordon has filed a lawsuit against Conway's team sponsor Extenze while Conway has in turn sued lawsuit in their nasty spat over payments from the 2010 season.

Conway, who drove six races for Gordon's team last year, is seeking $27,000 from winning the Sprint Cup Series Rookie of the Year Award. Gordon is after $690,000 in back sponsorship money he feels is owed by Extenze and has indicated he'd pay Conway once that money was collected.

Conway has reportedly filed a police report against Gordon in the wake of Friday's altercation.


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Posted on: September 15, 2010 3:07 pm
Edited on: September 15, 2010 3:34 pm

Report: Front Row suing Conway, sponsor

The animosity between Front Row Motorsports and its former driver Kevin Conway and former sponsor Extenze continues to grow. According to a report on SceneDaily.com , Front Row is suing Conway and Extenze over alleged non-payment.

According to the complaint and contracts attached as exhibits, Extenze was to pay Conway’s marketing company Exclaim $5.4 million in 50 weekly installments of $108,000, and that money was then to be sent to the race team. The $5.4 million was designed to cover the first 15 races, and then Extenze would have the option of funding the remaining 21 events through revenues generated by a product placement contract. The team would get 15 percent for product placement at dollar stores, retail stores or wholesale auto parts stores.

Conway’s base compensation, according to a contract that is an exhibit in the lawsuit, was $540,000 plus 10 percent of any other sponsorships brought in for the car. He also would get paid 15 percent of all purse money and season point fund money, with the percentage increasing to 30 percent for any top-20, 35 percent for a top-10 and 45 percent for a top-five.


Couple of things I found interesting in the report was that ....

1. "Front Row was obligated to put Conway in a car that was in the top 35 in owner points, and if he failed to make the field in two consecutive races or any three during the season, the contract could be terminated." Now we know why Front Row kept playing musical cars.

2. "If he ever fell 300 points behind any other rookie, he could terminate the deal with Front Row." Since he was the only rookie running the full season it was never in danger of happening.

Posted on: August 31, 2010 5:21 pm

Conway hooks up with RGM for rest of season

Press release follows:

Charlotte, N.C. (August 31, 2010) – Kevin Conway, the leading 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Raybestos Rookie of the Year driver, and ExtenZe Racing officially announce today that they will be teaming with Robby Gordon Motorsports (RGM) for the balance of the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season beginning this weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

For Sunday’s running of the Emory Healthcare 500, fans will find Conway behind the wheel of the No. 7 ExtenZe Racing Toyota. Conway heads into the Atlanta race weekend leading Terry Cook in the Sprint Cup Series Raybestos Rookie Standings by 154 points (192-38) and looks to better his 31st-place finish at Atlanta earlier this year.

Prior to making this announcement, Conway had one start for RGM at Bristol Motor Speedway earlier this month and 21 starts this year for Front Row Motorsports (FRM), capturing 21 straight Raybestos Rookie of the Race awards and giving FRM its best finish since its inception in 2005 with a 14th-place finish at Daytona International Speedway on July 3rd. He also became the first Raybestos Rookie to lead a lap at the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 25th since Jamie McMurray did so in 2003.

“I am thrilled to finally be able to announce our signing with Robby Gordon Motorsports,” says Conway. “The Bristol race a couple weekends ago came together very late and gave everyone just a quick peek at what was possibly to come.  Now that everything is in place I can’t wait to take to the track this weekend in Atlanta in the No. 7 ExtenZe Racing Toyota.

“I am very thankful for this opportunity Robby has given me and ExtenZe. I’m looking forward to helping keep the No. 7 in the top-35, gaining more seat time and finishing races while reaching my ultimate goal of claiming the 2010 Raybestos Rookie of the Year title with RGM,” added Conway.

“Moving our racing program with Kevin over to Robby Gordon Motorsports was a no brainer really,” said Robert Wilhovsky, Director of Motorsports Marketing for ExtenZe. “Robby has a great organization with very good equipment and a car locked into the top-35 owner’s points that will allow us to get Kevin more seat time and help him continue to grow as a driver.

“We look forward to the remainder of the year with RGM and are glad we get to have him and his organization join Kevin’s quest to be crowned the 2010 Raybestos Rookie of the Year driver," added Wilhovsky.            

“We are excited to have ExtenZe Racing and Kevin Conway join Robby Gordon Motorsports. This is an excellent opportunity for everyone involved, and I am excited to have Kevin behind the wheel of the No. 7,” added Robby Gordon. “I hope that we will be able help Kevin bring home the Rookie of the Year Award while expanding our team and his on-track experience.”

Posted on: August 24, 2010 9:13 am

Conway to drive for RGM rest of season?

Sponsorship is a wonderful thing. If you're a driver and you have it in your back pocket, you're basically a golden child. No matter your skill level, you too could possibly have your own Sprint Cup ride.

Paul Menard has been playing the game for years and parlayed it into a Cup ride with Richard Childress Racing next season.

Now Kevin Conway is working the sponsorship magic thanks to ExtenZe.

Those sponsorship dollars initially mesmerized Front Row Motorsports and they gave Conway a Cup ride this year despite the fact he had never completed a full season in any of NASCAR's lower tier series. In 25 starts over five years in the Nationwide Series, he never had a top 10.

They bent over backwards for Conway, juggling seats on a couple occassions in an effort to keep him in the top 35 in owner points. But a couple of weeks ago they decided they couldn't prop him un any longer and replaced him with Tony Raines.

Conway, who leads the rookie standings by virtue of being the only rookie to run a majority of the season up to this point, had an average finish of 31.6 in 21 starts with Front Row. His best finish was 14th (Daytona in July). He had finished better than 30th in just four races.

That didn't stop Robby Gordon from calling. He hooked him up in his No. 7 car at Bristol -- where Conway finished 36th -- and is keen on keeping him on board the rest of the season and possibly next year as well according to a report on Scene Daily .

Gordon's No. 7 car is in currently 35th in owner points, 125 ahead of the No. 26 car owned by Bill Jenkins and 144 ahead of Front Row's No. 38 car.

-- Brian De Los Santos

Posted on: August 13, 2010 1:14 pm
Edited on: August 13, 2010 2:28 pm

Front Row Motorsports replaces rookie Conway

Earlier this week there were rumors that rookie Kevin Conway , driver of the No. 34 car for Front Row Motorsports, was in danger of losing his ride which prompted this response from his sponsor ExtenZe:

"Contrary to some Internet reports out there that recently surfaced after the NASCAR race weekend concluded at Watkins Glen, ExtenZe and Alteril are 100% committed to Kevin Conway and the sport of NASCAR,” said Robert Wilhovsky, Director of Motorsports Marketing.

"While we are currently evaluating our options for 2011, Kevin Conway has been and will continue to be the foundation of our NASCAR program in the years ahead.

"We knew this was going to be a big learning year for him and it has been incredible what he has been able to accomplish with very limited resources and older equipment finishing right there with his much more experienced and veteran teammates each and every week while competing on many of the tracks for the first time in any type of race car.

"It has been exciting to watch Kevin develop this year as a driver and we are very excited to be a part of his quest to become the 2010 Raybestos Rookie of the Year in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.  Kevin has a big future with us and in NASCAR and we look forward to what lies ahead," added Wilhovsky.

While his sponsor may be committed to Conway, Front Row is not. The organizaton, which bent over backwards for Conway, juggling seats on a couple occassions in an effort to keep him in the top 35, has decided to make a change, Front Row has indeed made a change, replacing Conway with Tony Raines .

ExtenZe, however, will not sponsor the car. The company is suspending its program with Front Row while it evaluates its options with Conway.

Conway, who leads the rookie standings by virtue of being the only rookie to run the full season up to this point, has an average finish of 31.6 in 21 starts and his ride is 35th in owner points. His best finish is 14th (Daytona in July) -- the best finish in Front Row history according to the latest release from his sponsor that you can read below. He has finished better than 30th in just four races.

“First, I want to thank Front Row Motorsports with Yates Racing and Ford for giving me an opportunity to drive for them this year,” said Conway. “It has been a really big learning year for me and I certainly couldn’t have made it this far without Front Row, support from Ford, and the veteran leadership of my crew chief Peter Sospenzo and my teammates David (Gilliland) and Travis (Kvapil).

“It was exciting for me to be able to give Front Row their best finish in the team’s history and it’s unfortunate that we can’t work it out to remain in the car for the immediate future. From here, I am looking forward to what lies ahead for myself and ExtenZe Racing for the remainder of 2010 and beyond,” added Conway.

“As was released earlier this week, ExtenZe and Alteril are 100% committed to Kevin Conway and the sport of NASCAR,” said Robert Wilhovsky, Director of Motorsports Marketing. “While we are currently evaluating our options for the rest of 2010 and next year, Conway has been and will continue to be the foundation of our NASCAR program in the years ahead."

As soon as Front Row signed him, I figured it wouldn't end well. It seems fairly clear that the only reason he landed a Cup ride was because he had a sponsor in his back pocket, because other than that, the signing made absolutely no sense.

He had never completed a full season in any of NASCAR's lower tier series. In 25 starts over five years in the Nationwide Series, he never had a top 10.

There's still a chance Conway could return to the seat, but aside from Michigan, Raines is also scheduled to drive the car next week at Bristol.

-- Brian De Los Santos

Posted on: May 26, 2010 10:43 am

Drivers play musical chairs at Front Row

Front Row Motorsports is shifting its drivers and sponsors around. Effective immediatley Kevin Conway will shift from the No. 37 car to the No. 34; David Gilliland goes from 38 to 37; and Travis Kvapil goes from 34 to 38.

The 34 car is currently 32nd in owner points (953 points), the 38 is 35th (899) and the 37 is just outside the top 35 in 36th (897). That's going to put the pressure on Gilliland this weekend to qualify for the Coca-Cola 600 on speed.

Complete press release follows:

Statesville, N.C. (May 26, 2010) - Using a unified approach to give its three-car team the best opportunities to continue to succeed as a whole, Front Row Motorsports announced changes to its NASCAR Sprint Cup Series line-up effective this week for the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway. 
The team is moving Kevin Conway and the ExtenZe Racing sponsorship to the No. 34 Ford Fusion, David Gilliland and the Taco Bell program to the No. 37 Ford Fusion, and Travis Kvapil and the Long John Silver's program to the No. 38 Ford Fusion.  The changes are aimed to optimize all three teams' ability to score more points and strengthen the organization.
The 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup season has been one of continued growth for Front Row Motorsports.  The team announced at the beginning of the season the expansion to a three-car team with backing from Ford Racing.  The team hired 2003 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Travis Kvapil and Nationwide Series winner David Gilliland to take lead roles.  Raybestos Rookie of the Year leading candidate Kevin Conway was also hired to complete the team based in Statesville.
"I'm proud of how we've performed this year - our first year with three full-time cars," said Bob Jenkins, owner of Front Row Motorsports.  "We are not a powerhouse three-car team, but we work as an organization to grow together as one.  Our teams have to be unified to be stronger instead of operating as three separate groups. 
"Moving our drivers, along with their respective sponsors, to different cars gives us the best chance to succeed as an entire team.  It has been this attitude and strategic growth plan that has allowed us to become the team we are today."
All three Front Row cars have made the starting lineup of all 12 Sprint Cup Series races in the 2010 season.  The team is working with potential sponsors now to become stronger and take the next step to become a top-25 team.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com