Column: Caraway adds entry-level Modified division
Cleaning out the racing notebook:
Caraway Speedway will have a new entry-level division in 2013.
The Southern Modified Light class will be for open-wheel cars that are the same as NASCAR Modified Tour cars but will be limited to factory-built Chevrolet “crate” engines that cost less than handmade engines. To help limit costs, each team will purchase four new tires for the opening race of the season and will be permitted to buy just one new tire for each race after that. Race winners will collect $500.
The track said 2012 Legends Champion Austin Thompson and former Limited Late Model champ Josh Lowder have purchased cars.
While all of the major teams in the Sprint Cup[ Series have filled their seats, the driver lineups in the NASCAR Nationwide and Truck series are still taking shape.
Richard Childress Racing filled two spots this week, selecting Brian Scott to drive its No. 2 Nationwide car and bumping Brendan Gaughan up to fulltime in the Truck Series.
Scott, who wiil be entering his fourth year in the Nationwide Series, essentially swaps places with Elliott Sadler, who left RCR to take over the No. 11 Toyotas that Scott had been driving at Joe Gibbs Racing. Scott, who is from Idaho, will have sponsorship from an Idaho resort.
Gaughan, who drove selected races for RCR in the Truck and Nationwide Series, will bring sponsorship from a Las Vegas casino and will reunite with crew chief Shane Wilson. Gaughan will also compete in two Nationwide races.
Elsewhere, Joe Denette Motorsports is folding into an outfit called NTS Motorsports, which will operate out of the former Kevin Harvick Inc. shops in Kernersville that housed the Denette team this year. The team will field three trucks - continuing the No. 9 for Ron Hornaday that Denette fielded this year, the No. 14 for Brennan Newberry (the son of NTS co-owner Bob Newberry) and another team which is to name it full-driver lineup but will have Harvick for the two races at Martinsville Speedway.
A release said that Hornaday has signed a two-year contract with the team and this will be Brennan Newberry’s first year as fulltime contestant.
And, 19-year-old Max Gresham will be back with Eddie Sharp Racing and plans on competing in every race after a limited schedule in 2012.
Sprint Cup champ Brad Keselwoski won the annual U.S. Driver of the Year Award on Thursday in a landslide as he was named on 18 of the ballots cast by 19 media members. . .Late NASCAR and Darlington Raceway official Jim Hunter, late Pocono Raceway owner Dr. Joe Matiolli and announcer Ken Squier have been selected to the National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame at Darlington. . .Lee Pulliam of Person County, who raced primarily at South Boston Speedway but did compete at Caraway, will be honored as the NASCAR weekly track national champion in Charlotte on Friday as part of a two-day celebration that will end with honoring the NASCAR’s regional touring series champs on Saturday.
THIS AND THAT
Tony Stewart turned down Roger Penske’s invitation to race in the Indianapolis 500 in 2013. . .Furniture Row Racing, which has used pit crews provided by other organizations, said it will have its own pit crew next season. . .The 2013 schedule for the PASS South Series for Late Models contains a Nov. 9 race at Caraway.