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cover of Kansas Review, Dollar vs Venturini, and All Star Race Preview | Chasing The Cup S1:E16
Kansas Review, Dollar vs Venturini, and All Star Race Preview | Chasing The Cup S1:E16

Kansas Review, Dollar vs Venturini, and All Star Race Preview | Chasing The Cup S1:E16

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In this episode, I review the races from this past weekend at Kansas, I give my opinions about the rivalry between Drew Dollar and Billy Venturini, I preview the All Star Race weekend at Texas, and more. Credits for information and weather go to NASCAR Media and The Weather Channel. Intro and Outro are from NASCAR Racing 1996.

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In this episode of "Chasing the Cup," the host reviews the races from Kansas, discusses the beef between Billy Venturini and Drew Dollar, previews the All-Star Weekend at Texas, and shares some news. The host also gives their picks for the Truck, Xfinity, and All-Star races. The All-Star race is set to take place on May 22nd, with William Byron as the host's pick to win. Hello everyone, welcome back to another episode of Chasing the Cup. I'm your host Will Englund. In this episode, I'm going to be reviewing the races from Kansas. I'll also talk about some RCP between Billy Venturini and Drew Dollar. I'll also go over the news, and I'm going to preview the All-Star Weekend at Texas. But first, let's take a look at the results from Kansas. Kurt Busch gets his first win of the season and gets 23-11 Racing's first non-plate race win after battling hard with Kyle Arson, who finishes second. Kurt's brother Kyle Busch finishes third. Kurt's team owner Danny Hamlin finishes fourth. Christopher Bell finishes fifth. Martin Trucks Jr. finishes sixth. Ross Chastain finishes seventh. Ricky Stinghouse Jr., who had another good run, finishes eighth. Alex Bowman finishes ninth. And Kurt's teammate Bubba Wallace rounds out the top ten. In my opinion, this was a great race. Plenty of passing, and there was very little of that dirty air affecting the racing. It was there at times, but it wasn't the main factor in these races like they have been at Kansas. You could pass by doing the slide job, or just passing on the bottom or the top. And while years pass, if you try to go under someone, the dirty air will just pull you back. And that just really sucked and got on the nerves of fans like me. But now, it looks like the days of dirty air affecting the outcomes of races is over. And today's race was probably the biggest test, because this racetrack both made and destroyed the 550 package. In 2019, you had a great race at Kansas. For that night race, it was almost like a plate race. But then, the next year in 2020 during the fall race, in what I consider some harsher conditions, the dirty air was in full effect and made probably the worst finish in NASCAR history. Other than finishes where the leaders overlapped ahead, it was just so frustrating to many fans and many people thought that it was the problem with these big tracks and we should go to road courses and short tracks because dirty air does not affect those tracks. And to be honest, those tracks were where the Gen 6 and CO2 shine. For instance, Bristol and Martinsville always put on great shows as well as tracks like Watkins Glen always put on a good show when those cars were around. For instance, Kislowski vs. Ambrose or AJ vs. Ambrose or Elliott vs. Truex. Meanwhile, they were not going to these cookie cutter racetracks like Texas and Kentucky and Kansas and all of them because of their bad racing caused by the car itself. Many people thought it was just the horsepower not being all the way to 900 like it was in 2014 and in those years, it put on a pretty good show at places like Atlanta and Texas. But I'd say those were the only tracks that the Gen 6 thrived with the 900 horsepower package and places like Daytona and Talladega were not as good as races because the leader had full lane control. Coming on at Daytona and Talladega later in the Gen 6, it was just chaos and it was probably the best plate racing ever alongside the plate racing with this new car and the Gen 4. And now many people are thinking, should we go to more of these places like bring back Chicagoland and Kentucky? Maybe go to Pikes Peak in the future if anyone remembers Pikes Peak. I don't. I've seen replays and heard stories from Pikes Peak. But maybe we could do that. We could go to Pikes Peak and have the KIP series race in Colorado. That could be an option for 2023. According to what the seating capacity is, I don't know off the bat, but with this car and this current package it has, I'd say it would probably put on a good show at Pikes Peak and bring in the audience at Pikes Peak. Of course, Pikes Peak is known for the hill climb, but with that cookie cutter out there, it could bring in a whole lot of other fans throughout the West and the Rockies. Not sure how big stock car racing is in the Rockies, but if they had the Cup Series in the Rockies, it could bring in people from places like Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, etc. Where probably the closest tracks for those areas would be Fontana, Sonoma, and Texas, all of which are either West or South of the Rockies. So to conclude, this was a great race and this car has really shown that it shines at road courses and cookie cutters, as well as super speedways. Meanwhile, short tracks, primarily flat short tracks, aren't living up to the hype. And finally, let's go over the truck series. Zane Smith gets his third win of the season, followed by Ty Majewski, who finishes second. Grant Endfinger finishes third. Chandler Smith finishes fourth. Christian Ekis finishes fifth. John Hunter Nemechik finishes sixth. Matt D'Benedetto finishes seventh. Derek Cross finishes eighth. Matt Crafton finishes ninth. And Ben Rhodes rounds out the top ten. In my opinion, the truck race was almost as good, maybe slightly less than Cup, but it was still a very good race. And put on a great show with lots of action. Lot of guys and gals wanted to go three wide, like when Haley Deegan and Riley Herbst made it four wide going into turn one one time, and that was crazy. As well as other times where they were three and four wide in tricky spots, but those probably the most noticeable. So now the truck series is halfway through its regular season. So let's take a look at the winners we have already for this season. Zane Smith, Ben Rhodes, John Hunter Nemechik, and Chandler Smith. There are still six playoff spots open for winners and guys and gals that can point their way in. I'd say most of the drivers in the top ten will either win or point their way in. Meanwhile, there are guys below the cut line that could make it in points, and there are also ones that have to win if they want to make it in. But you never know who's going to win in one of these events. The reason why we have four full-time winners is because some of the part-timers have won, and these drivers are Corey Heim and William Byron. And so there are plenty of drivers that still need to get a win, especially those who have been suffering for the first part of the year. Now if they want to win, they have to do it in this eight-week stretch. There are six weeks to go in this stretch. If they can point their way in or win and get in, then they'll also need to be consistent through the playoffs and get the win. So overall, great racing this weekend at Kansas. Could we see a great race at Texas this weekend with this car? Who knows? IndyCar had a good one, but we'll have to see. Of course, it's the All-Star Race, so you will not have a full field, but we'll see what happens. So now with that out of the way, let's talk about some beef in the Arca Menard Series. Before we get to the Arca beef, I'm going to take an opportunity to take a look at how the Bush-funded girls are doing so far this season. Starting off with Tani Breidinger. Breidinger has two top tens, an average start of 10.0 and an average finish of 14.5, and it's so far her best season in the series. Meanwhile, Amber Balkin has one top ten, an average start of 18.3 and an average finish of 16.8. So not bad for both full-time female drivers in the series. They're both running equal to each other, although Tani Breidinger is running better, and you think they're looking good until you take a look at Hayley Deegan's racing reference, how she ran in the series. In Hayley's only full-time Arca season, she had four top fives, 17 top tens, an average start of 5.9 and an average finish of 7.3. So Hayley Deegan is still way better than Breidinger and Balkin. That's because she has a lot more raw talent, and plus it's still early in the season. And mind you, this was an equipment that was not up to snuff in 2020 because it was DGR back when their Arca program was quite bad, and Hayley was getting the most out of her stuff. You could really tell at places like Daytona, the fairgrounds, and that Midwest Bullring that I don't know the name of off the top of my head. And honestly, she should have at least won two of those events, but Daytona, she was just sticking behind someone. She got turned by Ty Gibbs at the Bullring, and she finished second to a part-timer at the fairgrounds in Illinois, I believe. So overall, the two girls are doing okay, but they're definitely not as good as Hayley Deegan was in equipment that was not as good as those two. So let's now move on to the ARCA BEEF! After that incident, Billy Vincerini was not happy and said that he had a pure lack of talent. And then two days after, which was yesterday, Monday, Drew Dollar tweeted this out. Talk about a quote-unquote pure lack of talent. Guess it took this guy about 14 years to figure out he didn't need to be a race car driver. Then Billy came back and replied. Took you two days to come up with a reply? Who did you employ to give you this comeback? Of course, Drew Dollar used to run with Vincerini. And in his first full-time season with the team, he got his first Inouye win in the series and four top fives and 14 top tens with an average finish of 8.8. So not bad, but he had two DNFs. And he was very inconsistent. And that allowed Haley Deegan to swoop in and get the Rookie of the Year title. Meanwhile in truck, so far Drew Dollar has three DNFs and only one top ten at Daytona. And then Xfinity, he DNFed in his first start at Daytona and finished 13th at Talladega a couple weeks ago. And many people are saying that Drew Dollar doesn't have a lot of talent. And they came up with that comeback and said that Billy Vincerini took about 14 years to figure out he didn't need to be a race car driver. So let's take a look at his results in the series. During a different era in that series, he ran four full-time seasons from 2002 to 2004 and a full-time season in 2006. During that time, he got a win, 28 top fives, 75 top tens, a pole, and an average finish of 15.5. With his best fiscal season being his 2004 season with an average finish of 12.3. Now Drew Dollar's best season, he had an average finish of 7.4 and that was last year when he ran part-time in 2021. So Drew Dollar is technically right. But there's one thing he has to account for and that is that Billy ran in a different era of ARCA. ARCA back then was probably more competitive than it is today. You know, the whole top five is a lap ahead of everyone else. It usually comes to Kyle Busch and Bill Vincerini and their drivers being on top. With the occasion of part-timers like Taylor Gray coming in and getting a win, like at Phoenix. Because now, DGR is a lot better than it was back a couple of years ago when their best prospect was Haley Deegan and she was running seventh most of the time on the big tracks because their cars were not as good aerodynamically than Vincerini and Brent Holmes. To be honest, if Haley Deegan stayed in the Toyota camp, she would have been the rookie of the year without contest instead of contesting with Drew Dollar and she may have also won the title because she would probably been in the fastest car besides maybe Ty Gibbs because her only competition for the title would have been Brent Holmes. He was probably the most consistent full-time driver besides her and he also won a couple times in 2020. But he was not as fast as some of the Toyota guys. So Haley Deegan had the speed of those Toyotas. To be honest, she could have taken the title away from Brent Holmes and she probably would have gone back to back last year because I'm not sure if she would have even moved up the tracks until this year. Who knows what she would be driving for. So that's why she moved the Ford. That's why she didn't put up the results we expected in 2020. But it was still a solid season for her, especially since she was in that subpar DGR equipment. So I hope that proves my point about looking like a Haley Deegan simp or something. And it really shows how much ARCA has changed in 20 years. From being a very competitive series to the anti-competitiveness that it is now. Where the top 5 would usually be a lap ahead. So it's not a fair comparison. And to be honest, I think Billy and Drew were probably equal in talent. And I'd say probably because he's older. If he got back into a race car, the race true dollar, he would not be as good as he was back in 07. So to end this, I think they're pretty much equal to each other. No one is better than the other. Because although Drew Dollar on paper has better stats, Billy Venturini raced in a different era of ARCA when the racing was more competitive than it is now. Where if you have the best equipment, you can win without contest. So comparing the numbers isn't fair. But if you take a look closer, then you'll see that they are pretty much equal to each other. And I have one word to say to Drew Dollar. You can run your mouth all you want. But if you don't put your money where your mouth is, you're not going to be successful in this industry. So if you want to make Billy Venturini look like a fool, then you need to stop DNFing in all these races. And try to run cleanly. And you need to put the money where your mouth is. And show that you can win in the top levels of the sport. And not constantly wreck. And take championship winning equipment and run outside the top 10. So that's my opinion. If you have an opinion about this beef, leave it in the comments below. I'd like to hear it. So with that out of the way, now let's get to the news. Let's start off with a funny story. Austin Sendrick will be unveiling the largest can of Keystone White this weekend at Texas. Of course, because it's Texas, everything is bigger in Texas. And apparently beer is as wittle. So that's probably a funny thing you'll want to keep your eye out at the track. Kyle Busch's pit crew has begun the first NASCAR team to crack the 9 seconds mark. The unofficial time for the stop was 8.96 seconds. Which happened on lap 124. And this was for a 4 tire pit stop. And this was probably helpful because of the single lug. Next let's take a look at the TV ratings. FS1 got a 1.43 rating and 2.337 million viewers for the cup race at Kansas. Which is down from a 1.62 rating and 2.739 million viewers from last year. So it's pretty much still flat, slightly down, but it's pretty much still in that margin of error. But it still looks like it's still going down. It's mostly been these cable races that have been down. Meanwhile the ratings on network TV have been up. Which really shows how cable isn't the thing that it once was. Ten years ago, when most houses in the United States had a cable box in their house. Kind of like how as I look across from my entertainment center, I can see a cable box from Spectrum right across from me. But there are less and less cable boxes. Because less and less people don't want to pay for satellite and cable. That really shows itself because mostly these cable races have been down. Although the cable races are mostly flat, they've been mostly slightly down. So with this next TV contract, as Steve Feltz said, they're going to try to put their focus on network TV. Because network TV is where it's at. Because you can pretty much get network TV for free. You can just stick a Nintendo in the back of your TV and you can get it for free. And it's even at a better quality than cable. Of course it's according to how good your signal is. So as cable becomes less and less relevant, the cable TV ratings will also continue to go down and down and down. As a lot of people move to streaming and all that. Kevin Harvick and Eric Gamoroda are partnering up with their sponsors for a fan giveaway during the All-Star Race. All fans need to do is tune into the broadcast and follow Bush's Twitter page. And then during the fourth lap and the tenth lap of every stage of the All-Star Race, they need to tweet hashtag Bush Bacon for a chance to win the most coveted prize mankind has ever known. Bush Beer and Spare-Pail Bacon for life. Well, that's quite interesting. If you want to get into that, you can do that. Magical Vacation Planner will be joining Chase Briscoe for five races. The start time for the Open has been moved up, which allows Blake Shelton to perform between the Open and the All-Star Race. Austin Dillon's Crew Chief Justin Alexander is currently out due to COVID-19 protocols. And some big news coming from NASCAR Chief Operating Officer Steve Olfgato saying that an OEM is very close to joining the sport and is about to cross the finish line. Many people are saying that it could be Dodge, but there could be other OEMs. But this is very exciting if we can get that fourth OEM back. It could be Dodge slash Mopar. It could be another Asian OEM like Honda, maybe a European OEM or Australian. Who knows who it will be? We'll just have to wait and see. USA Network will be airing a show on Austin Dillon called Life in the Fast Lane. It will premiere on June 23rd. RV retailer LLC has been named the official motor coach partner of Penny GMS. Kyle and Samantha Bush have welcomed their second child to this earth and is their first daughter and her name is Lennox. Not like the operating system kernel. Her name is spelled L-E-N-N-I-X. So try not to confuse it with the Lennox kernel. So that's it for this week's news. So now let's preview the All-Star Weekend at Texas. Starting off with our first two points paying races this weekend which are the Truck and Xfinity races, we're starting off with trucks, we have the SpeedyCash.com 200. The race will be 147 laps and 220.5 miles. The race will be on May 20th at 8.30pm Eastern Time. And so for my pick, the truck series I'm going to go with, Zane Smith. He won last week and he's been dominant this year. So I think his momentum will continue to Texas and I think he'll win this weekend. Next we have the Xfinity series which is the SRS Distribution 250. The race will be 167 laps and 250.5 miles. And the race will be on May 21st at 1.30pm Eastern Time. So for my pick for the Xfinity race, I'm going to go with Ty Gibbs. Ty Gibbs won at Vegas and he's been pretty fast and he's pretty much a safe pick so I'll go with Ty Gibbs. And so that's it for the points paying races. Now let's get to the fun race which is the NASCAR All-Star race. The All-Star race will be 100 laps and 150 miles. And the race will be on May 22nd at 8pm Eastern Time. And before the All-Star race, the Open will be at 5.30pm Eastern Time. So now let's take a look at Sunday's weather for the All-Star events. On Sunday night, it will be partly to mostly cloudy with a low of 63 degrees. And winds will be east at 10 to 20 mph with a chance of rain of 24%. So there is a slight chance of rain for Sunday night. It will be quite breezy. So that might affect how the cars drive. So expect it to be quite breezy but not very cold. But you may want to bring an umbrella just in case of a pop-up shower comes up over the track which is possible. And so my pick for the All-Star race, I'm going to go with William Byron. William Byron has so far been the dominant car of the year besides Ross Chastain. And I think William Byron will get his first $1 million All-Star race paycheck. And he'll win this weekend at Texas. And so that's it for this week's episode. If you enjoyed this episode, please like and subscribe for more. And if you're going out to Texas this weekend for the All-Star event, I hope you have a good time. And if you're not, have a good time wherever you are. Of course, I won't be there. But I once went to the All-Star race back in 2012. It's been 10 years since I last went to the All-Star race which was at Charlotte. Jimmy Johnson won that race, of course. And Dale Jr. won the Open beforehand. Of course, that was not the only time that I saw that Junior won. Anyway, I'm taking up too much of your time just talking about my past experience with the All-Star race. So let's just get out of here. I'll see you next week.

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