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Toyota gets it's 1st cup win


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The 1st off shore team to win since 1954! Even I wasn't born then! Kyle Busch is a hell of a racer! I can see him winning a championship just as his brother Kurt did.

Kyle Busch gives Toyota first Sprint Cup win

HAMPTON, Georgia (Ticker) - The so-called All American sport of NASCAR Sprint Cup racing now has a Japanese nameplate in victory lane after Kyle Busch drove a Toyota Camry to victory in Sunday’s Kobalt Tools 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

It’s the first time since 1954 that a car whose heritage comes from outside of the United States has won in NASCAR’s top division. That’s when All Keller drove a Jaguar to victory at Linden, New Jersey.

Busch’s Toyota defeated Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Tony Stewart by 2.066 seconds with Dale Earnhardt Jr’s Chevrolet third, followed by Roush Fenway driver Greg Biffle’s Ford and Jeff Gordon’s Chevrolet.

It was Busch’s first top 10 finish at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The 22-year-old from Las Vegas was also the youngest ever to win at AMS.

And in true Busch style he even nudged fellow Toyota driver Dale Jarrett out of the way on the final lap.

Busch also won Friday night’s NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Atlanta and was running away with Saturday’s Nationwide race before a right-front tire blew out while he was leading late in the race.

“Overall, a great day for Joe Gibbs Racing,” Busch said.

Stewart was surprised with his second-place finish and took some major verbal shots at the horrible performance by the Goodyear tires.

“That’s the most pathetic racing tire I’ve ever been on in my career,” Stewart said. “Goodyear can’t build a tire that is worth a crap. If I were Goodyear I’d be embarrassed with the tire they brought here today. It was ridiculous to have to race on a tire like that today.

“They should just pull out.”

Busch was one of the dominant cars in the race but waited until the end to exert his dominance to close out the victory.

Elliott Sadler spun out for the second time in the race on lap 232 and that allowed the field to duck back onto pit road for another pit stop just seven laps after going green. Jimmie Johnson, who had been inconsequential up to this point, was the Lucky Dog and that allowed him to get back onto the lead lap.

Racing resumed on lap 236 with 90 laps left until the checkered flag. Kyle Busch was in front of former Hendrick Motorsports teammate Gordon. Clint Bowyer was third followed by Carl Edwards and Earnhardt.

Edwards took the lead when he passed Busch on lap 239 using the high-line of the race track.

Sadler spun out for the third time in a row when he lost control of his Dodge on the backstretch on lap 262, which erased Edwards’ large lead and sent the field back to pit road for four fresh tires.

Edwards drove away from the field before his tires started to smoke and that allowed Busch to pull ahead briefly before Edwards pulled away once again.

Edwards’ Ford continued to smoke leading to concern from the driver. Despite the problem, he continued to be running away from the field.

Edwards was black-flagged by NASCAR officials with car smoking heavily and sent into the pits to inspect the cause of the problem with 50 laps to go.

That gave Busch the lead as he battled Earnhardt and Stewart.

Edwards, who had been under tremendous scrutiny this week after his team was nailed for cheating last Sunday, was working with Matt Kenseth’s former crew chief, Robbie Reiser. He was filling in for Edwards’ crew chief Bob Osborne after he was suspended for six weeks for the Vegas infraction.

“Something is bleeding heavily from the engine,” Edwards said. “I was just cruising along. That car was really, really good. I think we were going to win that race. We were having a blast. Robbie Reiser kept calling me Matt and I kept calling him Bob.”

Another yellow flag set up another pit stop with 41 laps to go. Earnhardt wanted his crew to tighten up the car so it would be closer to the setup he had at the beginning of the race, when he enjoyed two long periods in front of the field.

When the green flag waved with 37 to go, Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Busch and Stewart were first and second followed by Biffle’s Ford and Earnhardt’s Chevrolet. Busch pulled ahead from Stewart.

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Stewart ripping Goodyear is awesome and will put Bill France Jr to the test of his words when he said he wanted the drivers to have more personalities.

Well it is what he asked for, is it not!?! FWIW, Tony is one of the last drivers having a problem showing his true personality.

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More on Tony ripping Goodyear. From what I observed during the race they came in with an inferior product. Tires went away after 10 laps at best. I haven't seen that much wiggling going on since my last trip to a titty bar!

Not a good year: Goodyear hears another round of complaints about its tires

By PAUL NEWBERRY, AP Sports Writer

HAMPTON, Ga. (AP)—Tony Stewart has gotten into it with the media. He’s taken out his frustration on fellow drivers. He’s even gone after all-mighty NASCAR.

Now Goodyear is feeling his wrath.

On a day when nearly everyone complained about the quality of tires provided for Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, no one was more biting in their criticism than Stewart.

“I can’t say it’s surprising,” Stewart said. “They got run out of Formula One. They got run out of CART, the IRL. They got run out of World of Outlaws sprint cars. They got run out of USAC divisions because they couldn’t keep up and make a quality enough product.”

Ouch. And that’s from the guy who finished second to Kyle Busch in the Kobalt Tools 500.

While others were a bit more diplomatic than Stewart, just about everyone complained about the tire Goodyear decided to use on a 1.54-mile, high-banked oval that is notorious for wearing down the rubber faster than most tracks on the Cup circuit.

Carl Edwards said his shoulders were aching from struggling with the wheel all day. Jeff Gordon said he felt as if he was going to wreck on every lap. There was very little side-by-racing, with most drivers more concerned with making sure they got to the finish without getting into the wall.

But Stewart really let loose, saying NASCAR should not have made Goodyear its sole provider of tires. The company has a five-year contract with the sanctioning body that runs through 2011, an arrangement that NASCAR prefers because it doesn’t want multiple companies competing for business at the expense of safety.

“The bad thing is they’ve got an exclusive deal,” Stewart said. “They have no reason to have to push and make their product better because they have no competition. I don’t know what it’s going to take to get them to give us a quality tire that this series and NASCAR deserves. But they obviously aren’t capable of doing it right now.

“If I were Goodyear, I would really be embarrassed about what they brought here. I guarantee you Hoosier or Firestone or somebody can come in and do a better job than they are right now.”

A Goodyear official declined to respond directly to Stewart’s complaints but defended the company’s products.

“We’re not stagnant. Things keep evolving. We’ll take this and learn from it,” said Justin Fantozzi, the marketing manager for Goodyear’s motorsports division. “We do the best job we can with the data we have. We bring the safest tire we know how to build.”

As with most things NASCAR, there’s always divergent opinions on what needs to be done to provide the best competition. No matter what sort of tire it builds, Goodyear will likely be criticized by someone.

“There’s 43 drivers here. There’s 43 crew chiefs. There’s 30 car owners,” Fantozzi pointed out. “So there’s about 120 opinions on what needs to be done.”

But the backlash against the tire chosen for Atlanta track was stunning in its ferocity, a near-unanimous chorus against Goodyear for choosing a compound that wouldn’t wear out as quickly but sucked all the life out of the action on the track.

“I felt like I was going to crash every single lap,” said Gordon, who started on the pole and finished fifth. “I’m exhausted right now. I feel like I’ve run a thousand miles here. There is just no reason for this. This car, this tire, at this race track, was just terrible.”

The “Car of Tomorrow,” which is in its first full season of Cup racing, isn’t making Goodyear’s job any easier. The car is designed to improve safety, but it’s bigger, bulkier frame makes it tougher to drive and provides a whole new challenge for tire engineers.

During Sunday’s race, drivers rarely got in more than a couple of laps at top speeds before their tires began to lose grip. That turned the event into nothing more than follow-the-leader, with everyone fighting for control of their own car rather than worrying about competing with those around them.

“I don’t think the race was all that exciting,” said third-place finisher Dale Earnhardt Jr., set to join Gordon for a tire test Monday at Darlington.

“We couldn’t run side-by-side. We’d wreck. We had to let each other go by. Every time you got beside a guy, you were just like, ‘Take it.’ I couldn’t go in the corner side by side. No one else out there really could, either.”

NASCAR spokesman Jim Hunter defended Goodyear, pointing out there were no major crashes. All but two of the 43 cars were running at the end, and Elliott Sadler was the only driver knocked out of the race in a crash. He lost control and spun into the wall on lap 262.

Sadler wasn’t hurt, and no one else was involved.

“This was only the second race on a mile-and-a-half track with the new car,” Hunter said. “Goodyear always puts safety first, and there were no tire failures. There’s no doubt this car is harder to drive and as a result, there’s a bigger premium on the driver’s ability. We certainly can understand drivers being frustrated after 500 grueling miles. However, Goodyear will work with us and the teams to make things better. They always have.”

Atlanta Motor Speedway president Ed Clark weighed into the fray, saying he already spoke with a top Goodyear official, Stu Grant, to let him know the track is available for as much testing as needed before the Oct. 26 race.

“We will do everything possible from our end to help make sure that we have the best tire compound available when the Sprint Cup teams return this fall,” Clark said.

Stewart isn’t optimistic.

“If that’s what we’ve got to look forward to, weekends like this, there will be a lot of drivers going into retirement a lot earlier, because nobody’s going to want to keep doing it like this,” the outspoken star said.

“That was the most pathetic racing tire I’ve ever been on in my professional career. Goodyear can’t build a tire that is worth a crap.”

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