Chat with Terry Blount
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, 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 was recently inducted into the Texas Motorsports Hall of Fame for his contribution as a reporter and columnist.
Send your questions now and join Blount Thursday at 2 p.m. ET!
John Asheville, NC [via mobile]
Now that Dale Jr, seems o be running better do you see him resigning with Hendrick or going some place else.
Terry Blount (2:02 PM)
Rick Hendrick says they are working on a new deal. It realy depends on what the sponsors want to it, but I'd say him staying is much more likely now than it was three monmths ago.
Travis (New Mexico)
What is going on with the 1 car? Is it Mac, slow stops with mistakes, or just bad luck. I know his equioment is good or JPM wouldnt be running so well.
Terry Blount (2:04 PM)
If they knew, they would fix it. Clearly, it shouldn't be the equipment based on how JPM is running. And we know Jamie can driver, so that leaves the set-ups and the crew.
Aron (Grapevine, Tx)
What moments stand out for you from your induction into the Texas Motorsports Hall of Fame? Congrats again
Terry Blount (2:06 PM)
Thanks Aron. It was a special night for me and my family. Many things stand out. Two that mean a lot to me were Richard Petty shaking my hand and saying well done, and Bobby Allison giving me a hug.
Nick (Melbourne, FL)
Hey Terry, why do you think the Hendrick shops are so unbalanced? The 24/5(old 88/5) always seems to lack the consistency of the 88/48 shop.
Terry Blount (2:07 PM)
I don't think it's drastically unbalanced, but one shop has the people that built the cars for the guy who won the last five titles and the crew guys that helped him.
Randall (North Carolina)
Hey Terry, I read where you were at the NHRA Four-Wide event in Charlotte last weekend. I had friends over to watch on TV Sunday night and that's the first time that's ever happened for a drag race! I was wondering what you thought about it? We enjoyed it. Something different and pretty wild looking. Hoping to go see it live next year.
Terry Blount (2:09 PM)
I love it Randall. It's a blast (literally) to watch. But most of the drivers hate it. And a few fans don't like it because they only get to see three rounds of racing instead of four. But I think it's good to do once a year.
Football players usually have hip and knee issues after they retire, what kind of health effects do nascar drivers suffer after retirement
Terry Blount (2:11 PM)
I now some drivers have lower back issues after yars of getting up on the wheel in the driver's seat, but not a lot. I know for me, after doing this for over two decades and hanging aound garages, hearing is a concern. I'm careful these days to cover my ears as much as I can.
Terry, Which track that does not have a cup race right now; will be the next track to get one, and why in your opinion?
Terry Blount (2:12 PM)
If I had to pick one, I'd say Iowa, but no current track is close to getting a Cup date. What NASCAR wants to do is build new tracks in Saettle, Denver and New York.
Do you think NASCAR will take a look at the "pick a series" rule following this year? Instead of saying pick one, limit the number of races the Cup guys can enter?
Terry Blount (2:15 PM)
No, unfortunately, I don't see NASCAR limiting Cup drivers on how many NW races they can enter. But I tell you how they could change it. Tell the guys racing for the Cup title that can't earn the purse money in a NW event, and spread that money out over the NW championship guys. That would give them money they need. But that isn't happening, either.
Nico (miami, fl)
Do you think if Nascar mandated use of the rear wing at the superspeedways would bring pack racing back?
Terry Blount (2:16 PM)
No, and the wing isn't returning. It was one of the most unpopular things NASCAR did with the new car.
Avery (Port Angeles, WA)
There was almost a 1.5 mile track put into Bremerton, WA a few years ago but they didn't finish the project. It would've been an up for the sport of NASCAR if they invested in a track in the North West part of the USA, since the closest track is over 1,000 miles away from where i live, which is Sonoma............
Terry Blount (2:18 PM)
Here's the deal. ISC wants huge amounts of public funding to build a track. As a Washington resident, I can tell you that ain't happening. It didn't happen to keep the Sonics and it sure won't happen to build a track. That's pretty muich true everywhere now in this ecomnomy.
With everyone at Hendrick switching numbers for the all-star race ... Any chance Jr. gets to run the 8 for one race??
Terry Blount (2:19 PM)
Maybe, but to be honest, I really don't get into the numbers thing too much.
Where do you see Mark Martin ending up next year after he gives up his ride in the 5? Does he run another full schedule with a different team?
Terry Blount (2:21 PM)
That's the plan, but who knows where that will be. There's been wild speculation he would run the 6 against for Roush, but I don't see that happening.
Does Jimmie have a future in Hollywood based on his performance last night on Breaking In?
Terry Blount (2:23 PM)
I watched that last night and thought he did a really good job. I'm sure JJ will get some other bit parts here and three, but I don't think he's ready to become a movie star anytime soon.
Do you think National Guard and AMP will return as sponsors for Dale Jr? Do you see any other companies sponsoring him?
Terry Blount (2:25 PM)
When your name is Dale Earnhardt Jr. there's always sponsors willing to back him. However, I'm not sure both AMP and the National Guard will return, and certainbly not at the enormous sums they paid when Junior first came to Hendrick.
Does Mr. France go to every Cup Race during the season? Thanks.
Terry Blount (2:25 PM)
No. He makes a good number of them, but not all of them.
Bart (East Bay)
Rowdy Busch is spending his day today at Dollar General HQ near Nashville promoting this weekends races and you call it minor league and master of the minors? How is that positive for the sport when people like you bash Nationwide and truck racing?
Terry Blount (2:28 PM)
My job is not to be a cheerleader for the sport. I'm not a PR director. Part of my job is to write opinion columns that provoke thought. You have the right to disagree. And I'm not bashing NW. I want to see it become what's it's meant to be.
Tim Spears (GA)
Who wins more races this year? Kyle Busch or Kevin Harvick?
Terry Blount (2:29 PM)
If you mean overall including NW and Trucks, definitely Kyle. If you mean just Cup, that's a much tougher call. But I'd probably still go with Kyle.
Hi Terry, how are you? So if my fav driver Denny doesn't get a top 5 in Richmond, should I start panicking? Have a great Easter!!
Terry Blount (2:31 PM)
You too Colleen. I wouldn't panic, but Richmond is one of his best tracks, so it would be a concern if he doesn't run well there. I still think he's going to make the Chase on points and get in the top 10. Denny's at his best in the summer months.
Any chance we see Nascar switch to Saturday night races during the chase so they are not competing with the NFL for ratings?
Terry Blount (2:32 PM)
The schedule is set for this year, and that may not be a problem if the NFL doesn't reach an agreement with the players. But I think it's possible to see more Saturday night races in the future.
What do you think about the Arkansas Razorbacks making a National Title run in 2011? Woooooo Pig Sooie
Terry Blount (2:33 PM)
Well, they have to replace one of the best QBs in college football last year, so we'll see.
Brian (Oklahoma City)
If you could vote for 5 current drivers to go into the NASCAR Hall of Fame right now, who would they be?
Terry Blount (2:36 PM)
Johnson, Gordon, Martin, along with partially retired guys Bill Elliott and Terry Labonte.
You spoke earlier about new tracks, what is the type of track that NASCAR needs? Seem to be abundant 1.5 mile tracks, what do you think the sport needs most? Why has NASCAR never raced at Milwaukee Mile?
Terry Blount (2:38 PM)
NASCAR has raced Milwaukee in NW. New tracks need to be similar to Iowa and Richmond, a little less than a mile with room to race and about 75,000 to 80,000 seats. So many of the current tracks are over-built, and the 1.5-milers have produced the best racing.
NASCAR has an interesting or confusing or crazy formula for purse money distribution. Do full-time NW and full-time Truck drivers get any extra purse money in their respective series than non full-timers?
Terry Blount (2:40 PM)
Understaning purse payouts in NASCAR requires a PhD. It's a mess. You shouldn't have system where the guy who finished 30th can make more than the guy who finished 10th.
Michael (Las Vegas)
Regarding the hall of fame question, I could see Smoke getting in ahead of Mark Martin - two titles and a similar win total.
Terry Blount (2:41 PM)
Good point Michael. I tend to agree with that.
With the new scoring format this year, are they still going to give bonus points for wins going into the chase? If so, how many?
Terry Blount (2:42 PM)
I believe it's one point per win.
Would you consider Kyles minor wins if he were to retire when he gets put up for the HOF? Or to be fair, Kevins or Carls. (wouldn't want the Kyle fan to get upset lol)
Terry Blount (2:44 PM)
I know the voters will consider it because it's the NASCAR HoF not just the Cup HoF. But it would rank low for me because it's shooting fish in a barrel.
I think Tony Stewart is the only driver with championships under both formats, whole season and chase. Is this a big deal? and do you think either Gordon or Kenseth will join him?
Terry Blount (2:46 PM)
I think that is a big deal. Both Gordon and Kenseth still could get it done in the Chase. I think at least one of them will do it.
Bart (East Bay)
That's it. I won't read any more of your stories Blount. You are biased and just another Rowdy hater.
Terry Blount (2:47 PM)
I love Kyle, Bart. He's great for the sport and an incredible talent. I just don't like what he and Carl are doing in NW.
Why no Rusty for the hall of fame? Seems strange to me.
Terry Blount (2:49 PM)
It's isn't that he's not in the Hall. Only 10 people are in so far. But he should have been among the 25 new nominees. He is one of only 12 drivers in history to win more than 50 Cup races. And Rusty has been a great ambassador for the sport.
Parker (Tallahassee, FL)
thanks for the chat, do you see kahne winning a race this year?
Terry Blount (2:50 PM)
Kasey is a super talent, but not sure a win in in the cards until he gets to Hendrick.
Terry Blount (2:50 PM)
Gotta run guys. Have a wonderful Easter weekend. All the best. Peace.