Posted on: April 26, 2010 9:54 am
Edited on: April 26, 2010 9:55 am

Finch looking to sell Phoenix Racing

A nice article at about James Finch looking to sell his Phoenix Racing.

For a price, the new owner would acquire a 70,000 sq. ft. building complete with 35 race cars, all the machinery and two houses on nine acres in Spartanburg, S.C.

“I’ve had a real good time,” Finch said. “But it’s time to do something else. Offer me a fair price — then give me half and we’ll have a deal.”

Finch fielded cars for a variety of drivers in NASCAR’s Cup and Nationwide Series as well as ARCA. He won 12 NNS races with six different drivers on nine different tracks. But his most coveted win came at Talladega last year as Finch provided rookie Brad Keselowski with an opportunity to earn his first Sprint Cup victory.

Finch said he always aspired to win a race at Daytona at the Cup level and his Phoenix Racing cars were always perennial favorites at restrictor-plate tracks. But after 20 years of competition in NASCAR, Finch has no unrealistic expectations — particularly after losing the Miccosukee Casino and Resort sponsorship at the start of the season.

“It was meant for me to win Talladega and not Daytona — but that was a lifetime dream,” Finch said. “I just don’t want to go broke trying to outrun the manufacturers — whether that’s Jack Roush (with Ford), Rick Hendrick (Chevrolet), Joe Gibbs (Toyota) or Roger Penske (Dodge). I don’t have a sponsor and to rent a motor is $100,000 a race (from the top engine builders). I feel like I’ve been run out of business. You have to do business with them to run up front and that’s too expensive. We use to run 175 miles per hour for a 20th of a price. And now we’re running 190 miles per hour and it’s $225,000 to run all your stuff.”

Read the full story at

Category: Auto Racing
Posted on: April 23, 2010 12:45 pm
Edited on: April 23, 2010 2:52 pm

Harvick preference is to remain in Chevy family

As we noted yesterday there have been differing reports as to whether Kevin Harvick really wants to stay at Richard Childress Racing.

Speaking Friday from Talladega, Harvick says he's still talking with Childress, but wasn't happy with how the departure of sponsor Shell/Pennzoil was handled. He also said he was in no hurry to make a decision.

The biggest thing to come out of the news conference was that Harvick would like to stay in the Chevrolet family. If that's the case, his options would seem to be limited to staying with RCR, hooking up with Stewart-Haas or moving up his own team to the Cup Series.

Earnhardt-Ganassi has an engine alliance with RCR, so going there would basically be a lateral move. And there's no room at Hendrick unless Dale Earnhardt Jr. is jettisoned.

-- Brian De Los Santos

Posted on: April 22, 2010 5:01 pm

Does Kevin Harvick want to re-sign or not?

In contrast to an report that said Kevin Harvick was negotiating a new deal with Richard Childress Racing, possibly with Budweiser as sponsor,'s Tim Tuttle quotes a source that says Harvick has burned all his bridges at RCR and the chances of Childress and Harvick parting ways was close to 100 percent.

So who do you believe? I usually have a good radar on such things, but I'm not so sure with this situation. I tend to believe he'll leave -- though I'm not sold Stewart-Haas will be his landing spot. But it wouldn't surprise me at all if in a couple of weeks it's announced that Harvick is back with RCR.

Everybody assumes that Kasey Kahne is bound for Stewart-Haas for a season because of Tony Stewart's alliance with Rick Hendrick, but I think that would hurt Harvick's chances of coming aboard. I don't know that Stewart's ready to expand to four teams. I think three teams is his ceiling right now -- it has to be Kahne or Harvick but not both unless Stewart's receiving a serious infusion of cash from somewhere or Ryan Newman is let go. Sponsorship hasn't exactly come easy for the 39 car.

-- Brian De Los Santos
Posted on: April 21, 2010 11:11 am
Edited on: April 21, 2010 3:52 pm

Where does Shell move leave RCR, Harvick, Hornish

Penske Racing confirmed on Wednesday that it will indeed shift Kurt Busch to the 22 car next season with sponsorship from Shell/Pennzoil.

Brad Keselowski, in his first year with Penske in the 12 car, will take over Busch's No. 2 ride, which is expected to retain Miller Lite as its sponsor.

With Shell aboard Busch's 22 car in 2011, Sam Hornish Jr. can say good-bye to competing sponsor Mobil 1 on his 77 car. A three-time IndyCar Series champion, the jump to NASCAR has failed to result in much success. How much longer can Penske possibly give him to learn the ropes? Reportedly, the team has no plans to part ways with Hornish, but I'm not totally sold he'll be back. Though no doubt Hornish doesn't want to give up, he may be better off returning to the IRL.

Over at Richard Childress Racing, the departure of Shell wouldn't seem to be good news for the retention of Kevin Harvick, but the two parties remain in negotiations.

With Kasey Kahne bolting Richard Petty Motorsports at the end of the year, Budweiser is in play, but there are a lot of organizations that would love to grab that sponsorship. One of those organizations is Stewart Haas, with whom Harvick has been strongly linked as a possible destination. But some believe Kahne is bound for Stewart Haas until he moves to Hendrick in 2012. Does Stewart Haas have room for four teams?

And of course Mobil 1 is now in play too, but not sure sponsoring Harvick would be in their best interest after he has spent the past three years sponsored by rival Shell.

How strongly Harvick feels about staying in the Chevrolet family could impact his decision because I believe Toyota's Red Bull or Michael Waltrip Racing would love to bring him into the fold. Joe Gibbs Racing seems intent on staying with three teams.

And what about Harvick as a possible replacement for Hornish?

I do think the longer the Harvick situation drags on, the bigger the distraction it will become.

-- Brian De Los Santos

Posted on: April 20, 2010 10:17 pm

Kurt Busch to get new sponsor, number

It appears sponsor shuffling will land a new sponsor and number for Kurt Busch, though he'll remain with Penske Racing.

Sources are reporting that Shell/Pennzoil will leave Richard Childress Racing in 2011 and join Penske Racing as sponsor of Busch who will reportedly step out of the Miller Lite Dodge.

The potential deal will leave RCR without a sponsor for its No. 29 entry as team owner Richard Childress now attempts to re-sign the driver as well as finding a replacement sponsor.

There were other reports that Harvick was in discussions with Stewart-Haas Racing and could join that team as a third entry with Budweiser sponsorship, a move that would split the brewery from its current contract with Richard Petty Motorsports.

Busch will slide over to a No. 22 Dodge entry in 2011 that will carry the Shell/Pennzoil colors with teammate Brad Keselowski stepping into the familiar No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge.

Shell's arrival comes as Mobil1 departs the Penske organization. The company is currently the sponsor of Sam Hornish, Jr. and the No. 77 Dodge.

-- Pete Pistone

Posted on: April 19, 2010 12:48 pm

Childress fighting to keep Harvick

Scene Daily reports that Richard Childress is working hard to forge a new deal with Kevin Harvick , who is in the final year of his contract.

“Kevin and I are working hard together to stay together,” Childress said Sunday prior to the Samsung Mobile 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. “Our plan right now is to stay together and our plan right now is to be together.

“Anything can change, but right now we’re planning on racing together. We’ve been talking. We haven’t signed nothing yet. But we’re definitely talking in the right direction for him to be a big part of RCR and [keeping Kevin Harvick Inc.] all together.”

Read the full story at

If Harvick were to leave RCR, most rumors have linked Harvick with a third car at Stewart-Haas. But with the news that Kasey Kahne is in need of a ride for 2011 before joining Hendrick Motorsports in 2012, most believe Kahne will wind up at Stewart-Haas for 2011. 

Joe Gibbs Racing can't seem to commit to a fourth team which is why it didn't get into the bidding for Kahne.

But aside from Stewart-Haas, there could still be plenty of suitors for Harvick's services should he leave RCR. Penske and Earnhardt-Ganassi still have room for expansion. Red Bull reportedly wanted to throw big bucks at Harvick the last time he was a free agent. Michael Waltrip Racing is always looking to make a big splash. Roush is full, but you have to wonder how much more patience it will have with David Ragan.

In the end, things should work out just fine for Harvick.

-- Brian De Los Santos

Posted on: April 14, 2010 3:17 pm

Bliss to drive for Phoenix after leaving Baldwin

Just as quikly as he lost his ride at Tommy Baldwin Racing, Mike Bliss found a ride with Phoenix Racing, replacing Aric Almirola in the 09 car.

"We missed a couple of races, and last week (at Phoenix) obviously didn't go too good," Bliss told Dave Moody on Sirius NASCAR Radio's Sirius Speedway.

"I did a lot of thinking about what I thought was wrong with the car, and honestly I wondered for a while if it was me. I had a meeting with Tommy Baldwin on Monday, and obviously didn't feel very good about the way that meeting went. The ironic thing is that for the third time in my career, James Finch called before I was hardly even out the door to offer me a job."

Phoenix Racing has ostensibly been a start and park team, but may try to run a full race at Talladega where Brad Keselowski pulled off the biggest surprise -- and one of the most watched highlights -- of 2009.

As for TBR's 36 car, Johnny Sauter is scheduled to drive at Texas and Talladega.
Posted on: April 13, 2010 5:34 pm
Edited on: April 13, 2010 9:55 pm

Kahne headed to Hendrick Motorsports

Kasey Kahne
has signed a deal to drive the No. 5 car for Hendrick Motorsports starting in 2012. READ MORE
Of course that leaves his plans for 2011 somewhat open-ended. Mark Martin is signed to drive the 5 car for Hendrick through 2011. Speculation is that in 2011 Kahne could drive a third car for Stewart Haas, which receives engines and support from Hendrick Motorsports.

And what would that mean for Kevin Harvick , who many believe has one foot out the door at Richard Childress Racing with an eye on a ride with his buddy Stewart. Harvick started the season with four consecutive top 10s, but has finished no better than 11th in the past three races.

You have to wonder how much life is left in Richard Petty Motorsports. Kahne was only there as a result of a merger between Petty and Gillett-Evernham Motorsports. Will the organization be able to lure another top talent like Kahne? A shake of my Magic 8-Ball reveals "Outlook not so good."

-- Brian De Los Santos

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