Epaulets! The Penske-Wood connection goes back further than you think

Amid the cascade of feel-good stories after Ryan Blaney’s hard fought Pocono win yesterday, car owner and NASCAR legend Eddie Wood was asked about the state of his team’s alliance with the powerhouse Penske Racing organization.

Wood says the relationship goes back a lot further than the recent technical partnership.

How far? This far:

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Pocono Throwback – Father’s Day 2001

This week, we kick off a “throwback” series, by finding a posting an old school race on YouTube and sharing it with you here.

Nearly every track features historic races and iconic characters. So it’s good to be reminded.

This week, the 2001 Pocono race was held on Father’s Day so of course there was a big emphasis on Dale Jr., who had lost his father just a few months before.

Spoiler: He ran up front before short-pitting late, but made a game effort.

Here’s the race. Show notes (and another embed of the race itself) after the bump:

Credit: YouTube user Dave W

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Reed Sorenson and his sponsor want to change how you heat your house

When Reed Sorenson starts 36th in tomorrow’s Cup race at Pocono, he will carry the colors and logo for Energex Wood Pellets.

Energex is a manufacturer of wood pellets, tiny units of compressed, recycled wood, not “pallets,” those cumbersome and messy shipping platforms.

Who cares?

You might, if you’re tired of paying outrageous gas or electricity bills in the winter.

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Race Car Drivers vs The Media

A recent article in Nuvo Newsweekly asked several IndyCar drivers 20 questions about how quickly they do various things, from hot laps and pit stops to fixing a meal and getting in and out of their fire suit. But the question that elicited the most surprising answers was: What’s the fastest you’ve ever gotten out of a media interview?

If you saw video from Community Day when they flew to locations across the country to promote the Indy 500, the drivers might have appeared to be enjoying themselves. But there is a reason that autograph sessions at each track and Media Day interviews at IMS are mandatory. Far too often, a driver would rather be doing anything other than talking to the media.

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Alonso Storms Indy

The recent announcement that two-time Formula One World Champion and current McLaren driver Fernando Alonso will skip the Monaco Grand Prix this May in order to compete in the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500 rocked the racing world … in a good way. Rarely has a major announcement come as such a surprise. Such a welcome surprise.

This is the news IndyCar marketing executives could only dream of. Struggling to make the race after the momentous 100th running relevant, IndyCar was gifted this historic news. Despite all the media tours and press releases, Alonso’s announcement is the first thing to, as President & CEO of Hulman & Co. Mark Miles is fond of saying, “move the needle— definitely more than announcements about who’s singing the national anthem or which bands are playing on Carb Day, and even more than any other driver announcement.

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