PRIMARY SPONSORS LINKS
NAPA Auto Parts (24 races)
SunEnergy1 (4 races)
Kelley Blue Book (2 races)
Mountain Dew (2 races)
Hooters (2 races)
Little Caesars (co-sponsor w/Mtn Dew, Bristol)
SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS
Team Hendrick - Twitter
Hendrick Motorsports - Facebook
Hendrick Motorsports - YouTube
Chase Elliott - Twitter
Chase Elliott - Facebook
Chase Elliott - Instagram
NAPA Know How - Twitter
NAPA Know How - Facebook
Races  that NAPA Auto Parts is scheduled to be the primary sponsor in 2017:
1) Daytona - 2/26
2) Atlanta, 3/5
3) Las Vegas, 3/12
4) Phoenix - 3/19
5) Auto Club - 3/26
6) Texas - 4/9
7) Richmond - 4/30, Brakes
8) Kansas, 5/13
9) Charlotte - 5/28
10) Dover, 6/4
11) Michigan - 6/18
12) Daytona - 7/1, patriotic
13) Kentucky - 7/8
14) New Hampshire - 7/16
15) Indianapolis, 7/23
16) Pocono - 7/30
18) Michigan - 8/13
17) Bristol - 8/19
19) Darlington, 9/3
20) Chicago - 9/17
21) Talladega, 10/15
22) Kansas - 10/22
23) Martinsville - 10/29
24) Homestead - 11/19
Info from NAPAonline.com
Races  that SunEnergy1 is scheduled to be the primary sponsor in 2017:
1) Martinsville - 4/2
2) Pocono - 6/11
3) Watkins Glen - 8/6
4) Charlotte - 10/7
Races  that Kelley Blue Book is scheduled to be the primary sponsor in 2017:
Sonoma - 6/25
New Hampshire - 9/24
Races [3?] that Mountain Dew is scheduled to be the primary sponsor in 2017:
1) Bristol - 4/23, with Little Caesars
2) Charlotte, Showdown - 5/20
3) Richmond- 9/9
Races  that Hooters is scheduled to be the primary sponsor in 2017:
Talladega - 5/7
Phoenix - 11/12
Races that no sponsor has been announced in 2017:
Dover - 10/1
Texas - 11/5
Contract Status: Driver: 2022; Primary Sponsors: NAPA Auto Parts 2017?; Kelley Blue Book 2017; Mountain Dew/Pepsi 2017?; Hooters 2018
#24 Team / Driver News
Tab Boyd to serve as Byron's spotter in 2018: Boyd has served as spotter for Logano in Cup and Johnny Sauter in the Truck Series.[More](11-8-2017)
Darian Grubb named crew chief for William Byron: Hendrick Motorsports has named veteran crew chief Darian Grubb to lead the #24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 team of driver William Byron, who will make his NASCAR Cup Series debut in 2018 and compete for rookie of the year honors.[More](11-1-2017)
Reason explained why Hamlin not penalized for Elliott crash Asked on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio's "The Morning Drive" about NASCAR's perspective of the Denny Hamlin-Chase Elliott incident during the final laps of the race at Martinsville, Steve O'Donnell, the sanctioning body's chief racing development officer, said: "Certainly, what Chase was able to do in an attempt to win his first race there, I think you saw by the fans how much he has a fan base and how much everyone wants to see him win. Denny, I think, did in his mind what he needed to do and probably went too far. We did not make a call there. That race stands. We're not in the business of calling an in-race penalty postrace. That was good hard racing, for the most part, all day at Martinsville.(NBC Sports)[Read More Here](10-30-2017)
Elliott-Hamlin dust-up all a matter of perspective A new era of Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series racing debuted at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday. A son of Virginia and five-time winner at the Paperclip was booed as the 23rd-place finisher was adored and all while new LED lights came into play during the final laps of the First Data 500. And labeling either as a bully or a victim or both was a matter of perspective.
It was inside a cloak of laser brightness at Martinsville that Denny Hamlin hustled his way to a seventh-place finish in the First Data 500. That wasn't the championship-spot-clinching victory that seemed to be his at the start of overtime -- no, that went to Kyle Busch. Yet, Hamlin didn't freefall to the back of the playoff pack. He'll go to Texas, the second race in the last three-race block before the championship, in seventh place and trailing #4 Kevin Harvick by eight points. Meanwhile, Chase Elliott is looking up from the final spot in the Round of 8, back an intimidating 26 points after yet another time career victory #1 slipped from his grasp in the closing moments. Elliott took the lead from Brad Keselowski with three laps remaining in regulation when Hamlin spun him into Turn 3 to prompt the race's 11th caution and overtime. A multicar accident developed as the checkered flag dropped and, with the race over, Elliott engaged Hamlin as teams began to separate cars on the track. "He has been doing this long enough where it shouldn't happen," Elliott, who led a total of 123 laps, said afterward. "What he did was unnecessary (and) there's no reason for that. He knows the deal. He knows how the race works. He knows how Martinsville is. He didn't even try to move me out of the way. He just shoved me and wrecked me." Boos muffled celebratory cheers for Busch as the infield video board showed television coverage of Elliott and Hamlin's post-race interaction.
Hendrick Motorsports unveils 2018 paint schemes: Thursday evening, Hendrick Motorsports ushered in a new era with the reveal of its four primary Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 paint schemes for the 2018 Daytona 500. The thrilling event, held in uptown Charlotte, not only featured all four of the organization's 2018 drivers - Chase Elliott, William Byron, Jimmie Johnson and Alex Bowman - but also saw Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick, four-time Cup champion Jeff Gordon, 14-time most popular driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. and 1988 Cup champion Bill Elliott supporting them on stage.[More](10-5-2017)
Hendrick Motorsports 2018 car reveal Thursday at NHOF On Oct. 5 in Charlotte, North Carolina, 12-time NASCAR Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports will reveal the 2018 Daytona 500 primary paint schemes for all four of its Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 teams. It will mark the first time Hendrick Motorsports has unveiled all four of its Daytona 500 cars together and the first official appearance of the team's 2018 driver lineup:
- Chase Elliott and the #9 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
- William Byron and the #24 Axalta Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
- Jimmie Johnson and the #48 Lowe's Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
- Alex Bowman and the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
The event is open to fans via the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Information on how fans can attend is available at the NHOF website. The event will also be streamed live on NASCAR.com and the Hendrick Motorsports Facebook page.(Hendrick Motorsports / NASCAR Hall of Fame)[Read More Here](10-3-2017)
Friday Chicagoland Notebook
Chase Elliott's playoff game plan: improvement and consistency In his final 10 races in the #24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, Chase Elliott doesn't feel he can afford to look beyond his own efforts and his own team during his second run in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoff. After all, Elliott qualified for the postseason on points. In a season where other drivers collected their first career victories-Ryan Blaney, Austin Dillon and Ricky Stenhouse Jr.-Elliott, surprisingly, is still seeking his first trophy at NASCAR's highest level. In recent outings, Elliott and his #24 team haven't performed to expectations. As a consequence, improved performance is a priority as the 10-race playoff begins.
FEUD WITH PATRICK COULD COMPLICATE DILLON'S PLAYOFF RUN One of most widely-quoted clichés from mob movies is "Keep your friends close; but keep your enemies closer." In Austin Dillon's case, however, the driver of the #3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet might want to stay as far away from Danica Patrick as possible. Repeated contact last Saturday at Richmond between Dillon's car and the Patrick's #10 Ford sparked a rivalry that has the potential to carry over into the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoff. Dillon and Patrick were battling for position at Richmond. Dillon was aggressive in his attempts to pass the #10 Fusion. Patrick defended her position just as aggressively, and the cars touched several times before Dillon gained the spot. Patrick answered with a hard shot to Dillon's rear bumper, knocking Dillon's #3 up the track. Dillon responded with a nudge to Patrick's left rear quarter and sent her spinning.
BUBBA WALLACE HOPES RPM RIDE MATERIALIZES FOR 2018 As far as Richard Petty Motorsports is concerned, there are two known quantities where the legendary race team is concerned.
First, Aric Almirola will not be behind the wheel of the #43 RPM Ford next season. Second, sponsor Smithfield Foods has opted not to renew its support for RPM next year, choosing instead to shift its backing to Stewart-Haas Racing. What remains to be revealed is the identity of RPM's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver for 2018. Darrell "Bubba" Wallace Jr., who spent four races in the #43 Ford while Almirola was recovering from a crushed vertebra sustained during a wreck at Kansas in May, hopes he gets the nod. And Wallace acknowledged on Friday at Chicagoland Speedway that he and RPM are working toward that goal.(NASCAR Wire Service)[Read More Here](9-16-2017)
Chase Elliott to drive the #9 in 2018; William Byron in the #24: In 2018, 12-time NASCAR Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports will introduce the #9 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevrolet Camaro to its four-car team with Elliott in the driver's seat. The Dawsonville, Georgia, native raced the #9 to the 2014 NASCAR Xfinity Series title, and his Hall of Fame father Bill Elliott memorably drove it to 38 Cup-level wins and the 1988 series championship. When Byron starts his first career Daytona 500 next year, it will be in the iconic #24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet made famous by four-time Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon and his storied Rainbow Warriors team. Byron will begin his 2018 rookie season at the same age Gordon was (20) when he made his Cup debut in 1992.[More](8-29-2017)
Hendrick Motorsports announces several team promotions: Hendrick Motorsports has elevated eight senior leaders into new positions designed to strengthen the 12-time and defending NASCAR Cup Series champions and enhance the team's overall management structure. The eight executives, who will assume their new roles immediately, have more than 150 combined years of service with the organization.[More](8-15-2017)
Chase Elliott's Darlington throwback to honor his father Bill: When Chase Elliott hits the track at Darlington Raceway for the Southern 500, he'll do so in a paint scheme special to the Elliott family. The driver's #24 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevrolet SS will have a retro look -- a throwback to NASCAR Hall of Famer Bill Elliott's ride in 1976.[More](7-28-2017)
Patriotic scheme for Elliott at Daytona NAPA AUTO PARTS returns to the hood of Chase Elliott's #24 Chevrolet, this time with a new look. The #24 NAPA AUTO PARTS Patriotic Chevrolet SS dons a red, white and blue scheme that also features stars and stripes. The scheme will help to kick off NAPA's "Get Back and Give Back" effort while boosting awareness for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund (IFHF). NAPA AUTO PARTS has a long history of supporting the men and women of the United States Armed Forces and their families. In March, the company announced that it had raised more than $2.5 million in 2016 for the IFHF through its annual "Get Back and Give Back" campaign. The campaign kicked off in 2012 and gives NAPA AUTO PARTS patrons the opportunity to contribute to the IFHF by purchasing T-shirts at NAPAonline.com.(Hendrick Motorsports)[Read More Here](6-29-2017)
JRM Licensing Announces Partnership with CounterFind: JRM Licensing, LLC, which manages the licensed merchandise programs for all the Hendrick Motorsports and JR Motorsports teams and drivers, announced today a partnership with CounterFind, a company specializing in eliminating counterfeit merchandise in the social commerce space. The partnership is the first of its kind for JRM Licensing.
"We have seen a big uptick in the amount of counterfeit merchandise advertised on the various social media platforms," said Joe Mattes, vice president of JRM Licensing. "We're confident this new partnership with CounterFind will assist in reining in the counterfeiters. We want to proactively police the marketplace to protect our clients' brands and trademarks. NASCAR has one of the best fanbases in all of sports, and it's our responsibility to ensure that fans are purchasing authentic, quality merchandise manufactured by officially licensed vendors." Founded by former NFL player Darren Woodson, CounterFind is a turnkey technology used by some of the world's leading sports and entertainment brands to combat counterfeit goods in social commerce. CounterFind's software combines image recognition with human intelligence to detect and report all ads marketing counterfeit merchandise on Facebook and Instagram in real time. "CounterFind is solving the problems that broad internet protection companies can't figure out," said Woodson, CounterFind Founder. "If someone launches an ad on Facebook marketing a counterfeit product for Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson, or Chase Elliott, we will find it and have it removed in less than 24 hours."(JRM Licensing)(6-28-2017)
Chase Elliott and Hendrick Motorsports agree to contract extension Hendrick Motorsports and driver Chase Elliott have agreed to a four-year contract extension that will keep the 2016 NASCAR Cup Series rookie of the year with the #24 Chevrolet SS team through the end of the 2022 racing season. Elliott, who signed with Hendrick Motorsports in February 2011 as a 15-year-old high school freshman, has emerged as one of NASCAR's rising stars. In 2016, he earned a Cup playoff berth and was the series' top rookie after posting 10 top-five finishes, 17 top-10s and two pole positions, including the season-opening Daytona 500. Through 16 points races of his sophomore season, he is sixth in the Cup standings. Elliott's previous contract with Hendrick Motorsports ran through 2018.(Hendrick Motorsports)[Read More Here](6-27-2017)
Practice Accidents send Jones, Elliott to backup cars #77-Erik Jones had a tire deflating during Friday's opening practice at Sonoma Raceway. That turned out to be the least of his worries. In the first two minutes of the second session, Jones missed a downshift and wheel-hopped into Turn 11, the hairpin. His #77 Furniture Row Racing Toyota slid across the corner and slammed into the tire barrier near the apex. After his team prepared the backup car, Jones got back on track with roughly 25 minutes left in final practice.
Jones, however, wasn't the only driver who had issues in practice. In the first session, road course ace Billy Johnson spun early in the #43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford. Ty Dillon spun heading up the hill into Turn 2. The engine in Matt Kenseth's #20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota expired, and the car came to rest in Turn 10. Practice was winding down when Chase Elliott spun near the entrance to Turn 10, he spun all the way through the corner and nosed into the barrier beyond the exit. The #24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet team rolled out a backup car after the incident, and Elliott will have to qualify on Saturday with no laps on the car.(NASCAR Wire Service)[Read More Here](6-24-2017)
Kelley Blue Book makes 2017 debut on the #24 Chevy at Sonoma This weekend (June 25, 2017) at Sonoma Raceway, Chase Elliott will pilot the #24 Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet SS for the first time this season. Kelley Blue Book is the vehicle valuation and information source trusted and relied upon by both consumers and the automotive industry. Each week, the company provides the most market-reflective values in the industry on its top-rated website KBB.com, including its famous Blue Book Trade-In Values and Fair Purchase Price, which reports what others are paying for new and used cars this week. In addition to Sonoma, Kelley Blue Book is scheduled to be on the #24 Chevrolet SS later this season at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in September.(Hendrick Motorsports)[Read More Here](6-22-2017)
Original docuseries following Hendrick Motorsports to debut in July Complex Networks, Film 45, Markay Media, and NASCAR champions Hendrick Motorsports have teamed up on an original eight-part documentary series that journeys deep inside the teamwork, sophistication and heart that makes stock car racing an American institution. Road to Race Day goes behind the scenes with Hendrick Motorsports during the 2016 season, delivering unprecedented access to witness the passion, determination, and talent that propels its superstar drivers - Kasey Kahne, Chase Elliott, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. - and crew to be the winningest team in professional stock car racing. Directed by Cynthia Hill (A Chef's Life, Private Violence) and executive produced by Peter Berg (Friday Night Lights, Patriots Day), Road to Race Day premieres on Complex Networks' Rated Red available on go90 on Wednesday, July 19.(Hendrick Motorsports)[Red More Here](6-22-2017)
Hendrick Motorsports GM Doug Duchardt leaving Hendrick Motorsports executive vice president and general manager Doug Duchardt will leave the organization later this summer. He will remain in his role through the end of June. Duchardt, 53, came to Hendrick Motorsports in January 2005 as vice president of development, a position in which he oversaw race car design, engineering and production. In July 2013, he was elevated to the newly created role of general manager, directing all racing operations for the team. Duchardt's responsibilities will be assigned to multiple team members, including Hendrick Motorsports president Marshall Carlson, chief financial officer Scott Lampe and vice president of competition Ken Howes. The organization does not plan to fill the general manager role.(Hendrick Motorsports)[Read More Here](6-6-2017)
Elliott, Keselowski quotes on Coca-Cola 600 accident: The drivers were taken out of the race after an incident on lap 19.[More](5-28-2017)
Chase Elliott celebrates Bill's record setting Talladega pole run with shoes Talladega Superspeedway will always be a special track to the Elliott family. After all, it was there - 30 years ago this week - that Bill Elliott broke his own record for what still remains the all-time fastest qualifying lap in NASCAR Cup Series history. Chase Elliott, who has a Talladega pole to his name as well, will honor his father's accomplishment this weekend at the Alabama track. The driver of the #24 Hooters Chevrolet SS will wear special red, white and gold racing shoes this race weekend that feature iconic marks and graphics from the day the record was set in 1987.(Hendrick Motorsports)
AND This week marks the 30th anniversary of when Elliott set NASCAR's record speed of 212.809 mph while qualifying his #9 Coor's Ford Thunderbird for the annual Winston 500 at Talladega Superspeedway in 1987. The record, which came on the heels of his 210.364 mph mark at Daytona just a couple of months earlier, further cemented his place in NASCAR lore. Elliott's record-setting Thunderbird is still alive and well, having been donated by car owner Harry Melling to The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation in Dearborn, MI. There it proudly sits on display with many other iconic vehicles, telling a unique story and standing the test of time.(Ford Performance)[More](5-7-2017)
SunEnergy1 makes first appearance on the #24 at Martinsville: For the first time in the 2017 season, SunEnergy1, one of the world's largest privately held solar energy companies, will adorn the hood of the #24 Chevrolet SS. This weekend's race at Martinsville Speedway will be the first of four races that SunEnergy1 will serve as the primary sponsor for Chase Elliott.[More](3-29-2017)
Hendrick Motorsports goes for third straight Atlanta win Georgia has been "peachy" to Hendrick Motorsports in recent memory. The four-car outfit owned by Rick Hendrick has won the last three races at Atlanta Motor Speedway behind the efforts of #5-Kasey Kahne (2014) and #48-Jimmie Johnson (2015-16). On Sunday, Hendrick Motorsports will go for its fourth consecutive win at the 1.54-mile track as it travels to AMS with Kahne, Johnson, Georgia native #24-Chase Elliott and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 (NASCAR Wire Service)[More](3-3-2017)
Chase Elliott Launches Chase Elliott Foundation #24-Chase Elliott announced the launch of the Chase Elliott Foundation with the unveiling of special, children-designed racing shoes that Elliott and his three Hendrick Motorsports teammates will wear during this weekend's NASCAR races at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The racing shoes are the result of the "Design 2 Drive 4 Children's" art design collaboration with Children's Healthcare of Atlanta (Children's), the largest healthcare provider for children in Georgia. Patients at Children's submitted color sketches of racing shoes with a summer camp theme and five drawings were selected to be replicated on Alpinestars racing shoes and worn by the Hendrick teammates at Atlanta. Each of the five racing shoes are being auctioned off online for ten days beginning today. Auction proceeds go to benefit the summer camp program that Children's runs for its large patient network. At the special announcement today at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston, a children's hospital facility in Atlanta, the Chase Elliott Foundation also presented Children's with a check for $24,000, collected from proceeds of a 24-day holiday online auction program conducted this past December. In doing so, Chase Elliott Foundation Executive Director Cindy Elliott told the crowd of assembled Children's staff, patients and family of the non-profit organization's mission to helping others live healthier, happier lives. For more information, visit ChaseElliott.com/foundation. [More](3-2-2017)
Hendrick cars running Monster logos when required UPDATE: Car owner Rick Hendrick gave a short response to a question Friday about his cars not always displaying logos of Cup series sponsor Monster Energy when they are away from the track.
UPDATE: Monster Energy doesn't have a problem with Hendrick Motorsports taking steps to avoid using the Monster logo when its cars or drivers are not in the garage. [More](2-28-2017)
Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin win Can-Am Duel qualifying races: Daytona 500 pole winner Chase Elliott put an exclamation on his qualifying effort with a victory in Thursday night's first Can-Am Duel at Daytona International Speedway.[More](2-23-2017)
Forbes ranks NASCAR's most valuable teams: A dozen years ago, few leagues could match the popularity of NASCAR, which boasted record-high viewership and was going toe-to-toe with the NFL. But then few leagues suffered worse during the economic crash.[More](2-23-2017)
New members for the NASCAR Cup Drivers Council: Chase Elliott, Austin Dillon, Ryan Blaney and Aric Almirola are the new members of the NASCAR Cup Drivers Council. They join returning members Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson, Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick. The new drivers replace Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart and Kyle Larson. Drivers earn a spot on the 10-member council based on their performance the previous year or by being elected by fellow competitors. The group regularly meets with NASCAR officials to discuss on-track and off-track matters.(NBC Sports)(2-20-2017)
Elliott wins Daytona 500 pole again: #24-Chase Elliott win the Coors Light pole for the Daytona 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway with a speed of 192.872mph, his 2nd Daytona pole and 3rd career pole. Elliott has never won from the pole. #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. will start 2nd after running 192.864mph. The front row is locked into those spots. The rest of the field will be determined by the Can-Am Duel 150 Qualifying Races on Thursday (7pm/et on FS1). The rest of the top12: #2-Keselowski, #14=Bowyer, #78-Truex Jr., #11-Hamlin, #4-Harvick, #5-Kahne, #20-Kenseth, #31-Newman, #18-Busch and #13-Ty Dillon.
Winning back-to-back Daytona 500 poles is something of a family tradition, as #24-Chase Elliott proved by the skin of his teeth on Sunday at Daytona International Speedway. The last driver to take a lap in the second and final round of Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series qualifying at the 2.5-mile superspeedway, Elliott covered the distance in 46.663 seconds (192.872 mph) to edge Hendrick Motorsports teammate #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. by .002 seconds. The pole was the second straight for Elliott, who led the field to green last year as a Sunoco rookie. It was the third straight for Elliott's crew chief, Alan Gustafson, who won the pole with driver Jeff Gordon in 2015 in Gordon's last year as a full-time driver. With three straight poles as a crew, Gustafson shares a record previously held solely by Ernie Elliott, Chase Elliott's uncle, who fielded cars driven by former Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Bill Elliott, Chase's father.
"Everybody at Hendrick Motorsports has done a lot of work this off-season," said Elliott, who claimed the third Coors Light Pole Award of his career, all at restrictor-plate tracks. "This team definitely has a knack for these plate tracks, as they showed with Jeff Gordon and then last year with here and Talladega (where Elliott also won the pole). But that stuff doesn't just happen by staying the same, as everybody knows. Everyone is always trying to get better and make their cars better and faster; and the engine shop is always finding new things. So I think that's just proof that they're improving with everybody else and taking that next step, which is really impressive. I'm happy to be a part of it, and hopefully we can run good next Sunday."
Elliott and Earnhardt are the only two drivers locked into their starting spots for next Sunday's 59th running of the Great American Race. They will lead the field to the green flag in the first and second Can-Am Duel 150-mile qualifying races on Thursday night, Elliott in the first Duel, Earnhardt in the second. Earnhardt is racing for the first time since a concussion sidelined him for the final 18 events of the 2016 season. The satisfaction of locking in a front-row starting position tempered his disappointment at missing the pole by the slimmest of margins. "I certainly would have loved to have gotten a pole, but my boss man (Rick Hendrick) is happy," Earnhardt said. "I just talked to him on the phone, and he's got to be thrilled with having his cars up front." Brad Keselowski qualified third at 192.691 mph and will start on the outside of the front row in Thursday night's first Duel. Clint Bowyer, in his first competitive effort in a Stewart-Haas Racing Ford will start beside Earnhardt in the second Duel after posting the fourth fastest speed (192.571 mph).
With 36 chartered teams knowing they will race next Sunday, six "Open" entries are vying for the four remaining berths in the Daytona 500 field. Sunday's time trials brought good news for Brendan Gaughan and Elliott Sadler, who know they will race next Sunday as the two fastest qualifiers among the "go-or-go-homers." Conversely, Jeffrey Earnhardt and Timmy Hill, who posted the two slowest times in the field, can race in the 500 only if they are the fastest Open drivers in their respective Duels.(NASCAR Wire Service)
During round one of qualifying #24-Elliott was also fastest at 192.308mph, followed by #88-Earnhardt Jr., #2-Keselowski, #78-Truex Jr., #20-Kenseth, #11-Hamlin, #14-Bowyer, #18-Busch, #31-Newman, #5-Kahne, #4-Harvick and #13-Dillon, these 12 drivers advanced to the 2nd/final round and went for the two locked positions of the pole and outside pole.
Not Advancing: 17, 48, 19, 42, 22, 21, 6, 77, 27, 41, 1, 10, 43, 3, 34, 47, 32, 95, 37, 38, 75*, 72, 15, 7*, 55*, 96*, 23, 83*, 33, 51*.
The six Open/non-Charter, teams running for the four open Daytona 500 spots, #75-Gaughan and #7-Sadler secured spots by being the two fastest non-charter cars in qualifying. Gaughan was 33rd fastest and Sadler was 36th fastest. The next two drivers in speed are #55-Sorenson and #96-Kennington. If either Gaughan or Sadler are the highest finisher in their Duels, Sorenson would make the race on speed. If both Gaughan and Sadler are the highest finisher in their Duels, then both Sorenson and Kennington would make the Daytona 50 field. The remaining two drivers: #83-LaJoie and #51-Hill, have to be the highest finishing non-Charter car to make the race.
For round-by-round qualifying results, see the Daytona 500 Qualifying Results page (pdf).(2-19-2017)
Hooters to sponsor Chase Elliott: Hooters has joined 12-time NASCAR Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports as a primary sponsor of driver Chase Elliott and the #24 Chevrolet SS team beginning in 2017. A casual dining establishment with a deep history in NASCAR, Hooters will be a two-race primary sponsor and full-season associate sponsor of the #24 team in both 2017 and 2018. The Hooters Chevrolet SS will debut May 7 at Talladega Superspeedway and appear again during the Chase for the NASCAR Cup Nov. 12 at Phoenix International Raceway. Hooters has been a primary sponsor in more than 150 Cup-level races, notably as the full-season sponsor of 1992 premier series champion Alan Kulwicki. That year, Kulwicki won two races and narrowly edged Elliott's father, 1988 Cup champion Bill Elliott, by 10 points to win the title. As part of the new relationship, Hooters has launched a full year of promotions, exclusive content and commemorative merchandise for fans at www.hooters.com. Beginning today, fans can register for the chance to win a trip for two to meet Elliott and cheer on the No. 24 team from pit road at the Nov. 12 Phoenix race. Everyone who registers will receive a $5 off certificate toward their next visit to Hooters. For a limited time, the first fans to register can also purchase collectible limited-edition $24 Hooters gift cards commemorating Elliott and the new #24 Hooters Chevy.(Hendrick Motorsports)(1-23-2017)
Top 10 diecast of 2016: Lionel Racing - The Official Die-Cast of NASCAR - announced that Chase Elliott's #24 NAPA Chevrolet is the company's best-selling die-cast of 2016. The announcement marks the first time since 2011 that a driver other than Dale Earnhardt Jr. has claimed the top spot. Earnhardt owned the best-selling spot from 2012 to 2015. Although he was out of his race car during the second half of 2016, Elliott's ascension to the top spot was not a result of Earnhardt's absence. Both drivers' standard paint schemes were ordered and shipped prior to Earnhardt's exit. In fact, Earnhardt is still the company's best-selling driver overall, his cars account for four of the top 10 sellers. Making the list for the first time is Kurt Busch, whose Monster Energy Chevrolet secured the seventh spot. Kevin Harvick's new partnership with Busch gave him the fifth and tenth spots, respectively. Finally, seven-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Jimmie Johnson took spots six and eight, with his Lowe's 7X Champ die-cast well inside the top 10.
1. Chase Elliott #24 NAPA Chevrolet
2. Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Nationwide/Batman Chevrolet
3. Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Nationwide Chevrolet
4. Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Axalta Chevrolet
5. Kevin Harvick #4 Busch Chevrolet
6. Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe's/Superman Chevrolet
7. Kurt Busch #41 Monster Energy Chevrolet
8. Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe's 7X Time Champion Chevrolet
9. Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Nationwide/Grey Ghost Darlington Chevrolet
10. Kevin Harvick #4 Busch Light Chevrolet
Liberty University partners with Hendrick Automotive Group on dealership management class: In the spring, Liberty University will pilot its first course in automotive dealership management, thanks to a partnership with Hendrick Automotive Group, the nation's largest privately held automotive retail organization. Liberty plans to offer a full specialization next fall, under its Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. Dan DeHass, executive general manager for Mall of Georgia Mazda, Mall of Georgia MINI and Rick Hendrick Buick GMC, said there is a "giant void" for educating students in automotive dealership management and that most college students may not realize the "unbelievable opportunities within the industry." Only two other colleges in the nation have these programs, even though the U.S. has the second-largest automotive industry in the world (behind China). Students will be trained in managing a dealership as well as how to adapt to technology in an ever-changing marketplace. "The purpose is building future owners of dealerships," Hicks said. "If we can get students to think like owners and to learn the business that well, they are going to make phenomenal employees and, potentially, owners." Hendrick Automotive Group is working with Liberty to develop the curriculum, and some of its employees will contribute to course instruction, including prerecorded and live videos. The North Carolina-based automotive company has an extensive training program in place, which will be incorporated into expanding Liberty's curriculum.(Liberty University)(11-28-2016)
Elliott's 2017 NAPA scheme unveiled: Tuesday, Chase Elliott unveiled his 2017 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevrolet SS paint scheme on his Instagram account. The 2016 Rookie of the Year contender wanted to "keep it all in the family," so the design will retain the same blue-and-yellow colors as well as the five blue stripes that mimic Ron Capps' NAPA AUTO PARTS NHRA Funny Car. However, the scheme also incorporates new featured elements such as yellow racing stripes surrounding the existing light blue and red stripes on the side panels, yellow stripes on the A-frames and a completely new yellow rear panel.(Hendrick Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #24 team 2017 paint schemes page.(10-11-2016)
Hendrick helps Summer Camp Fund reach its goal: NASCAR team owner Rick Hendrick has donated $34,000 to The Charlotte Observer's Summer Camp Fund, the amount needed to help the fund reach its goal to give more children a chance to go to camp next year. Hendrick, last year's honorary chairman of the annual fundraising drive, said he came to realize how important it is to give children from low-income families the experience and opportunities that summer camp offers. "Over the last few years, our family has learned so much about issues impacting our young people," Hendrick said in a statement. "The success of the Summer Camp Fund really highlights the generosity and compassion of our community, and we've been proud to join with so many of our neighbors in supporting it." As of Friday, the Summer Camp Fund received donations totaling more than $190,000, which enables the non-profit to qualify for an additional $25,000 grant from the Leon Levine Foundation.(Charlotte Observer)(8-6-2016)
Hendrick Family Foundation to launch with event: Rick and Linda Hendrick have established the not-for-profit Hendrick Family Foundation, which is rooted in the belief that people working together can transform the lives of those in need and have a meaningful impact on our communities. The sold out "Learn Live Hope" celebration will represent the new foundation's first formal fundraising initiative. Scheduled for May 22 at The Fillmore in Charlotte, North Carolina, the annual charity event will benefit Be The Match, Levine Children's Hospital and Together We Feed Charlotte. In 2015, Learn Live Hope generated more than $1.6 million to support multiple organizations. The Hendrick Family Foundation will consolidate the philanthropic efforts of the Hendrick organization, including Hendrick Motorsports and Hendrick Automotive Group. It will absorb the Hendrick Marrow Program, which Rick Hendrick founded in 1997 and has raised more than $15 million in partnership with Be The Match to support patients in need of life-saving marrow or cord blood transplants. The Hendrick Family Foundation will continue to work with Be The Match.(Hendrick Motorsports)(5-21-2016)
UPDATE: Last weekend's sold out "Learn Live Hope" event was the first formal fundraising initiative for Rick and Linda Hendrick's not-for-profit Hendrick Family Foundation. The annual event was held May 22 at The Fillmore, with Bank of America returning once again as the title sponsor. Among the guests were drivers Kasey Kahne, Chase Elliott and Jimmie Johnson, broadcasters Jeff Gordon and Darrell Waltrip, and former New York Yankees slugger Reggie Jackson. The beneficiaries were Be The Match, Levine Children's Hospital and Together We Feed Charlotte. And "Learn Live Hope" raised $1.3 million in 2016 - one year after generating more than $1.6 million to support multiple organizations in 2015 when a golf tournament was featured as a portion of the event. The golf tournament was not held in 2016 as the course was under construction.
At this year's function, Bank of America Chief Administrative Officer Andrea Smith presented Hendrick with a $100,000 donation. Bank of America has supported "Learn Live Hope" for more than a decade as its title sponsor.(HMS)(5-28-2016)