I write about auto racing for @USATODAYSports. And I like weird music. Stories archived here: http://usat.ly/OXOTUk

Kenseth on Harvick wreck: "I couldn't feel any worse"

usatoday.com — FORT WORTH, Texas - Matt Kenseth and Kevin Harvick met Friday morning at Texas Motor Speedway for their first conversation since a mistake by Kenseth left Harvick on the brink of title elimination. Though he can't do anything to fix it, Kenseth hopes his error somehow would be rectified partly if Harvick's title hopes are resuscitated.

Reality Check: Third round roughest in NASCAR's Chase

usatoday.com — "Challenger," "Contender" and "Eliminator" are catchy ways to brand the rounds that comprise the Chase for the Sprint Cup. They hardly convey the actual circumstances that are culling the field in NASCAR's reformatted 10-race playoff. The opening three-race stanza, which featured no surprises, could have been dubbed "Perfunctory."

Points proving pivotal as NASCAR's Chase winds down

usatoday.com — MARTINSVILLE, Va. - Then there were two in the Chase for the Sprint Cup. There still are four title-eligible berths available in the Nov. 16 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. But Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s victory Sunday at Martinsville Speedway - the first through six races of the Chase by a driver not competing for the championship - will add a wrinkle to how they are determined.

Keselowski, Harvick Chase hopes take hit at Martinsville

usatoday.com — MARTINSVILLE, Va. - Kevin Harvick's path to his first Sprint Cup championship just got much more difficult. Harvick, who started 33rd and had worked his way up to sixth at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday, wrecked on lap 228 along with a spinning Matt Kenseth.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins at Martinsville Speedway

indystar.com — Jeff Gordon is second, Ryan Newman third and Tony Stewart fourth MARTINSVILLE, Va. -- Breaking down the Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500 from Martinsville Speedway: Winner: Dale Earnhardt Jr. scored his first victory at Martinsville Speedway, taking the lead from Tony Stewart after restarting fifth with less than five laps remaining.

Tony Stewart, crew chief revel in nearly winning Martinsville

usatoday.com — MARTINSVILLE, Va. - Chad Johnston stood patiently on the fringe of a row of cameras and microphones as Tony Stewart smiled his way through his first series of upbeat interviews in months. Johnston naturally wanted to congratulate his driver as Stewart basked in the afterglow of a rare highlight during the darkest year of his life.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins at Martinsville

usatoday.com — MARTINSVILLE, Va. -- Breaking down the Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500 from Martinsville Speedway: Winner: Dale Earnhardt Jr. scored his first victory at Martinsville Speedway, taking the lead from Tony Stewart after restarting fifth with less than five laps remaining.

Martinsville could give Chase driver breakthrough win

usatoday.com — MARTINSVILLE, Va. - Once the Sprint Cup circuit's most exclusive club, the gate to victory lane at Martinsville Speedway slowly seems to be creaking open. After a nine-race stretch in which only two drivers (Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin) conquered the 0.526-mile track in four years, the roster of winners has expanded (new faces Kevin Harvick and Ryan Newman) while the list of contenders has grown considerably.

Jimmie Johnson could see writing on the wall in Chase elimination

wcnc.com — MARTINSVILLE, Va. - Jimmie Johnson took his customary spot Friday at a media center dais and smiled devilishly as NASCAR moderator Kerry Tharp began a preamble introducing the six-time series champion. "You know what, Kerry?

Danica Patrick went to bat for boyfriend at Talladega

usatoday.com — MARTINSVILLE, Va. - Missing last week's Sprint Cup race was rough on Ricky Stenhouse Jr. It might have been harder on his girlfriend. Danica Patrick revealed Friday that she marched into the NASCAR hauler to read president Mike Helton and other officials the riot act when Stenhouse's streak of 68 consecutive starts ended in a bizarre qualifying session.
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Oct 31, 2014

RT @jeff_gluck: Matt Kenseth story updated with Kevin Harvick quote after qualifying. Does KH still feel the same way? "Absolutely." usat.ly/1sRqRca

Oct 31, 2014

Matt Kenseth's lap of 199.299 mph wins pole at Texas Motor Speedway. Then 24 48 41 4 14 31 78 18 22 99 88. #nascar

Oct 31, 2014

Matt Kenseth goes first and wins pole position at Texas as a flurry of late takers in final qualiyfing session fail to unseat him. #nascar

Oct 31, 2014

If he wins it, still won't be Tony Stewart's fastest pole at Texas Motor Speedway. Qualified first at 224.448 mph in 1998 #IndyCar. #nascar

Oct 31, 2014

Tony Stewart (200.111 mph) sets the pace in second round at Texas. The rest advancing: 31 24 18 4 20 88 99 22 48 78 41. 11 20th. #nascar

Oct 31, 2014

As @jeff_gluck astutely notes, Tony Stewart also sets the first 200 mph qualifying lap at a 1.5-mile track in #nascar history. So, yeah.

Oct 31, 2014

This will mark Brad Keselowski's worst starting spot since he qualified 26th in July at Daytona (16 races ago). #nascar

Oct 31, 2014

Other Chase drivers outside the top 10 advancing to second round: Carl Edwards (13th); Denny Hamlin (14th); Ryan Newman (22nd). #nascar

Oct 31, 2014

Jimmie Johnson fastest in 1st round of qualifying. Then 4 22 24 43 14 20 42 41 55. Shocker: Brad Keselowski (26th) fails to advance. #nacar

Oct 31, 2014

RT @jeff_gluck: From @jeffolson77 in Austin: How team's bankruptcy cost American driver his first #F1 start. usat.ly/1vq5rEU

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