Chat with Terry Blount
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday, ESPN.com NASCAR writer Terry Blount will stop by to talk about all the latest news and notes from around the NASCAR track.
Blount covers motorsports for ESPN.com after 25 years as a sports reporter and columnist at three major metro newspapers.
Send your questions now and join Blount Tuesday at 2 p.m. ET!
Terry Blount (2:00 PM)
Hello folks. One Chase race down, nine to go. And the IRL has a season finale NASCAR would love for Cup. What's on your mind?
Aaron (Bath, ME)
Hey Terry, you predicted Jeff Gordon would win the championship this year. However, he finished 15th at a track in finished second at in June, and is 102 points out with nine races to go. You standing by your prediction? Does the 24 team win the title this year?
Terry Blount (2:01 PM)
He's defintely not out of it, but Sunday didn't help him. Not so much because he finished 15th, but nine Chase driver finished ahead of him
Sherrie (North Carolina)
Terry, whats your opinion on Tony Stewarts recent decline in Sprint cup? I almost feel like he has ADD. It seems that the moment 1 thing goes wrong for him, he gives up. I don't think he is going to fair very well during this Chase.
Terry Blount (2:02 PM)
I wouldn't count him out just yet. Tony was upset Sunday about the axel cap problem. I don't blame him. But he was running up front before that happened.
Jeff (Rochester, Ny)
With Jack Daniels leaving the sport do you see Childress dropping to 3 teams as it's so late in the year and it's hard enough to get a sponsor now days?
Terry Blount (2:04 PM)
Very tough to get a primary sponsor for next season this late in the year. Most big companies set their annual budgets in October. So yes, it's possible RCR could have 3 cars next year.
Do you think Harvick will fire Hornday because Ron refused to move over and let Harvick fix the truck race?
Terry Blount (2:05 PM)
No, I think they'll work it out. Ron has done a great job for KHI and he's going to win the championship this year.
What is your take on Jr's comments towards the 00?
Terry Blount (2:06 PM)
I think he had a legit beef, but those things happen in the double-file restarts.
More money leaving the sport- not much new money coming. More mergers. More start and park next year. We know this now- but 2-4 seasons from now do you see some of these mergers undoing themselves- like Earnhardt/Gnassi etc- to get car counts up and more institutional control of teams- I have to believe a guy like Chip wants to run his own deal rather than answer to people on Teresa's side as well.
Terry Blount (2:08 PM)
I don't think Chip is answering to anyone at this point, but the team status is an ever evolving situation in this economy. If things improve, you might see some of these partnerships break up.
Aaron (Bath, ME)
So, does that mean you're changing your prediction for the Cup title this year?
Terry Blount (2:10 PM)
Too late now. It is what it is. I had a 1 in 12 shot. Not good odds. But we do it every year for fun and to let readers make their own pick.
As the supposed "team leader" at RCR, doesnt Burton have to take the blame for losing Jack Daniels and the poor performance of that entire team?
Terry Blount (2:11 PM)
That's ridiculous. He's a leader, but not the boss.
Aaron (Bath, ME)
How do you think the 2 team will fare this year? You have to admit: Pat Tryson picked a very bad time to announce his upcoming departure.
Terry Blount (2:11 PM)
I think it will catch up with them down the stretch. Lame duck situations usually don't turn out well in NASCAR.
Jeremy (Port Angeles, Washington)
Who do you think will be the Indycar Series champion?
Terry Blount (2:12 PM)
Great question. It's a heck of a three-man race, but I'll go with Dario.
Stewart said he deserves a $3.0 m bonus for leading in points going into the chase. How about a $10.0 m bonus for the driver who wins the most races and doesn't make it into the chase?
Terry Blount (2:13 PM)
That driver has plenty of money, trust me.
Shawn (Gastonia, NC)
I thought Jack Daniels in the 07 and Jim Beam in the 7 were a cute combination. Without Jack Daniels, I just don't see the 07 continuing. Does that open up the possibility for the 3 to come back, maybe with an Austin Dillon behind the wheel?
Terry Blount (2:15 PM)
Young Austin is no where near ready to race in Cup. And I don't think Richard is ready to bring the 3 back to the big show.
Terry, whats your opinion on Danica Patrick in Nascar sprint cup? Other then sponsorship, which Go Daddy is already in Nascar I don't think she will make it.
Terry Blount (2:16 PM)
It's hard to say. If she takes her time and learns in NW, she might do OK. What she will do is give NASCAR tons and added media attention and additional exposure.
Did Hendrick ever consider moving Gustafson to the 24? Gordon is wasting his last few productive years with Letarte. Sunday was case and point of a car that got worse as the race went on while other CC's made their cars better.
Terry Blount (2:17 PM)
Jeff is happy with Steve, so that wasn't a consideration. And it won't happen now. AG is staying with Mark through 2011.
Why didn't Joe Gibbs ban Tony Sterwart from the shop so he couldn't steal Toyota technology last year like Penske has banned Tryson?
Terry Blount (2:18 PM)
Tony didn't need to steal Toyota technology. He has Hendrick technology. And Tony isn't exactly a tech expert.
Why didn't Kyle move over and let Kurt finish higher?
Terry Blount (2:19 PM)
Because Kurt isn't his teammate. In this case, business if thicker than blood.
Steve (St. Anthony, MN)
Will Robby Gordon Motorsports be around after the first 10 races?
Terry Blount (2:20 PM)
It all depends on sponsorship. He'll have a hard time finding a sponsor that will fund the team the way Jim Beam did.
What driver/team to you listen to during the races?
Terry Blount (2:21 PM)
I switch around depending on what's happening at the moment.
I really wish Mark Martin just once after winning a race would take some credit for his achievemnet. I am sick of hearing the countless number of Thank You's. If he should win the chase, when they have the dinner in Las Vegas he will need the entire even just to say Thank You!!!
Terry Blount (2:22 PM)
Mark's a very humble guy. When you get old enough to have seen the tough times, you really appreciate what you have.
Mari (Ft Lauderdale)
Since Alan G seems to be the best cc at Henrick doesn't Dale Jr deserve to have Alan as his crew chief?
Terry Blount (2:23 PM)
Why would you break up a team that's working so well with AG and Martin? You don't weaken a good team to improve a bad one.
rich (North Carolina)
Do you think Rick Hendricks'genius eluded him when he kept Casey Mears and let Kyle go, perhaps his most talented driver since Tim Richmond?
Terry Blount (2:25 PM)
No. Rick was tired of playing nursemaid to Kyle's behavior issues. The headaches weren't worth it in Rick's eyes.
Lizzy (San Diego)
Has Dale Jr ever accepted responsibility for his failure as a race car driver?
Terry Blount (2:26 PM)
He has blamed himself many times for his failures this season.
Mike Mitchell (Jacksonville Fl)
Terry do you think Jr regrets Tony Jr coming with him to HMS.. it was more of the same ole song and dance once they were reunited there.
Terry Blount (2:26 PM)
I don't think he regrets it, but I don't think it was a good decision.
How about Henrick letting Vickers and Brad K go?
Terry Blount (2:28 PM)
Rick had no where to put Brad, but he still hopes to get him back sometime down the road. Brian got a great offer from Red Bull and wanted to be the No. 1 guy on a new team.
I think Kyle Busch has come along way the past few weeks with his attitude, do you think Coach Gibbs finally had enough?
Terry Blount (2:29 PM)
No, I just think Kyle is growing up and learning to act differently. He was a total class act at Richmond with the way he handled missing he Chase.
Do you think that Jeff Gordon will retire at the end of the season?
Terry Blount (2:29 PM)
No, not unless his back is much worse than he's telling is.
Fred (Little Rock)
Who's fault is it that Kyle's car was too low in post race? What penalty if any do you expect?
Terry Blount (2:31 PM)
It could be a signifiant penalty. The CC is the man that has to take the heat, but do you think this would have happened if Kyle was in the Chase? Not a chance.
Montoya have never done much at Dover in the past. How do you think he will do and any beef after the race between Burton and JPM or did they already talk about it?
Terry Blount (2:32 PM)
Don't know if they talked, but I don't think it's any big deal that will linger. I expect JPM to race well now no matter where he's competing.
I read that Eury Jr isn't happy at Hendrick's and Junior wants to move him over to JR Motorsports. Is this good?
Terry Blount (2:33 PM)
Tony Jr. would et to work more closely with his dad, which I'm sure he'd enjoy.
Joanne (Ft Myers)
We were very disappointed to hear Dale jr blaming David R for the wreck at Loudon. Is Dale now reaching for straws trying to blame everyone else?
Terry Blount (2:35 PM)
No. Guys get mad when they fell like someone wrecked them at the end of a race on a day when they had a chance to finish in the top 5. It goes with the territory.
McGee thought we would see another crew cheif for Junior next year. I think they should give Lance and Junior more time together. What's your thought?
Terry Blount (2:36 PM)
I think they have to really have some strong runs down the stretch for Lance to keep that job in 2010.
Lisa (Lower Alabama)
Do you think John Menard will step up and get Robby Gordon new sponsorship?
Terry Blount (2:37 PM)
He'll do what he can, but John Menard is more concerned with Paul Menard.
Shawn (Gastonia, NC)
I have a feeling that the sponsorship problems need a creative kick in the tail. I've never seen a Heinz sponsored #57 car. Robby Gordon should call Bill Gates and ask for sponsorship for the upcoming Windows 7 release. These sound like no-brainers to me. Heinz sponsors a football stadium. Microsoft spends Billions on commercials. A single race would be chump change to these folks.
Terry Blount (2:39 PM)
Nothing in the corporate world is considering chump chance these days. Every expenditure is carefully analzyed as to it long-term worth. Frankly, Robby Gordon's team doesn't exactly make the corp. honchos jump for joy.
RAY GORDON REID ( SHARPSBURG MD 21782)
QUESTION TO TERRY BLOUNT AT 2.50 PM HI TERRY WHOS YOUR PICK AT DOVER NH
Terry Blount (2:39 PM)
Since GoDaddy.com is funding most of Mark Martin's sponsorship on the #5 car next year, will they be continuing their relationship with JR Motorsports?
Terry Blount (2:41 PM)
Not sure, but here's an intersting thought. GoDaddy sponsors Danica. Now it's with Martin through 2011. Could DP take over that car in 2012?
Kyle got into the back of Newman early in the race. Could that be the cause for his left front being too low?
Terry Blount (2:43 PM)
It could, but I doubt it.
TERRY,HAVE YOU HEARD THE RUMOR THAT KASEY KAHNE IS BUYING A RACE TRACK IN UPSTATE NY?
Terry Blount (2:44 PM)
No, but Kasey loves short-track racing. I would think he'd like to buy a track close to home in Washington state where he honed his skills as a teenager.
sam posey (chesapeake ve)
What crew chief will work with Kurt ?
Terry Blount (2:45 PM)
Hard to say, but there are some very talented young guys ready to step up. If I were Roger, I'd make a run at Ron Malec.
Joey Logano has been showing some improvement in this latter part of the season. Do you think he will contend for a spot in the Chase next year?
Terry Blount (2:46 PM)
No doubt. Joey will get better and better, especially as he goes back to tracks that were new to him this year.
I asked Ryan this yesterday, wanted to get your opinion. What do you think of Bruton's lastest temper tantrum? Concord threw everything they could at him just so he would leave the speedway where it is. Now he is demanding $18 million worth of highway changes. Don't you think he is just handcuffing the city in the middle of an econmic depression? Very classless.
Terry Blount (2:47 PM)
Business is business Clay. It ain't personal. Bruton's a hard line businessman. He didn't get rich being a softie.
Ron Malec, kurt busch, im a KB fan is that a legit rumor or did you just throw that out there?
Terry Blount (2:48 PM)
Just my opinion of someone they should consider.
David (Bogota, Col)
Where do you see JPM after his contract with Chip is over in '11. Top team like HMS, JGR?, or signing again with Chip if team can elevate status like they have been showing.
Terry Blount (2:49 PM)
That's a long way off David. Who knows. JPM might win the championship and want to stay with Chip.
Any chance we will see Kasey Kahne running in a Toyota for 2010?
Terry Blount (2:50 PM)
No, not unless he can break his contract. He's running a Ford for RPM/Yates.
Do you think Ganassi will win the Sprint Cup before Penske does it?
Terry Blount (2:51 PM)
Great question. I think if if happens this year, it'll be Chip.
Matt Kenseth got off to a great start this season with back to back wins. Them he ended up not making the chase. Why were they not able to keep that monentum going throughtout the season?
Terry Blount (2:53 PM)
They really dont know. But the Roush cars are a tick behind. And it's odd the the new Ford engine they hyped in January still hasn't been used. Maybe Kenseth will use it down the stretch to try to get a jump on 2010.
Ron Malec is still with Hendrick, so how could Kurt Busch get him? And how will Kurt finish in the chase this year?
Terry Blount (2:54 PM)
He's not locked in a cage at Hendrick. I don't know what his contact is, but I'm sure if he was offered big money and a CC job, he would have to consider it.
Matt Kenseth won two races and still missed the Chase. Kyle Busch won four and still missed the Chase. Alot of guys that didn't win any races did make the Chase. Any chance we'll see a rule change next year that will award race wins more than consistency?
Terry Blount (2:55 PM)
I wish, but probably not. It's my hot-button issue. Winning should be more important than it is in this system.
What is the deal with Mark Martin's hair color? It seems like it changes every week?
Terry Blount (2:56 PM)
Hey, can a man touch up a little gray now and then?
mike (tolland ct)
Do you think if Eury sr was on top the pit box of jr he would pull jr head out of his butt and start driving like he used to.Is sr the only one that can understand how he talks about the car. handling wise.
Terry Blount (2:57 PM)
I think Sr. could have helped him. But Tony Sr. has no desire to go down that road at this point in his career.
How much of the #5 team success is car? 95% car and 5% driver?
Terry Blount (2:58 PM)
Oh no. If that wer true, Mears would have won in it. More like 50/50.
If Rick Hendrick knows what's good for him, he'll keep a hold on Ron Malec by offering him the crew chief position on the #88 car. I thought Malec should have gotten it all along instead of McGrew.
Terry Blount (2:59 PM)
I agree. And Rick may be thinking that way now.
If Nascar really wanted to equalize the competition they could prohibit in-races car adjustments. Will Nascar ever only allow tires and fuel and no adjustments?
Terry Blount (3:00 PM)
No. Adjustment now are pretty minimal in the COT. The crews all would like more adjustments.
Terry Blount (3:01 PM)
Gotta run folks. Hope everyone has a great week. I'm out. Peace.