Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Earnhardt Jr. Heads to Texas Motor Speedway Riding Hot Streak for Samsung Mobile 500
FORT WORTH, Texas -- A late-race accident involving race leaders Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson spoiled the opportunity for Hendrick Motorsports to secure the organization's 200th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory on Sunday at Martinsville Speedway. However, when the dust settled all was not lost for Hendrick Motorsports.
Dale Earnhardt Jr., currently second in the point standings and just six points behind leader Greg Biffle, finished third for the second consecutive race. Earnhardt Jr. has tallied three top-five finishes in the first six races, which is one shy of equaling his season total of four from last year. Despite still being mired in a 135-race winless streak, Earnhardt Jr. heads to Texas Motor Speedway riding the hottest streak during that span.
"I don't really know how to measure confidence, but we feel pretty good about what is going on and what is happening to us and how the thing is going down," Earnhardt Jr. said. "And there are still some things we want to improve on and the races can't come fast enough for our team right now because we are ready. We are really liking being at the track and being on the track, making laps and working."
Texas Motor Speedway has never posed a problem for Earnhardt Jr. and his recent success at the 1.5-mile speedway could possibly see that drought come to an end in next Saturday night's Samsung Mobile 500.
He has earned three of his 10 top-10 finishes at TMS in his previous four appearances. His ninth-place finish in last year's Samsung Mobile 500 and seventh-place effort in November's AAA Texas 500 were two of his 12 top-10 finishes last year.
Tickets for the Samsung Mobile 500 are available by calling the Texas Motor Speedway ticket office at (817) 215-8500 or visit www.texasmotorspeedway.com.
Johnson To Crown 'Speeding To Read' Champions At Clara Love Elementary
Five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson will make a special trip to Clara Love Elementary School in Justin on Friday, April 13, to crown the 2011-2012 champions for Texas Motor Speedway's Speeding To Read pilot educational program.
Clara Love Elementary's 630 K-5 student body have been racing to the finish line with more than 57,000 books read school wide. The school's classrooms, split into two divisions with kindergarten through second grade and third through fifth grade, have been competing against each other to read the most books and earn the title of Speeding To Read champions.
To keep abreast of the competition - known as the "Clara Love 500" - Texas Motor Speedway had an 8x24-foot animated mural of the world-class motorsports facility produced and installed on Clara Love's library wall. Each classroom received a cut-out template of a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stock car and the cars move incrementally around the track in relation to the amount of books read by each classroom.
Students will reach the final turn of the "Clara Love 500" next week and Johnson will award the top classes in the K-2 and 3-5 divisions that have read the most books during the 2011-2012 school year with championship trophies and four frontstretch grandstand tickets to next Saturday night's Samsung Mobile 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.
A media alert regarding the event will be released at a later date with more specific details.
Local High School Choir Scores Unique Opportunity
Fort Worth's Paschal High School Choir isn't accustomed to singing backup to a rock band, but on Monday evening they will get the opportunity. The group was selected to sing backup to Foreigner during its Foreigner Acoustique - Classics Unplugged private concert benefitting Speedway Children's Charities-Texas at Fort Worth's new Flying Saucer venue Monday night as part of a Lone Star 92.5 contest in conjunction with Foreigner.
High school choirs from across the Dallas/Fort Worth area submitted videos of their group singing a rendition of one of Foreigner's classic rock-n-roll songs for the chance to land the unique opportunity. Paschal High School's pop ensemble, which is just in its third month of existence, won the competition and will sing backup to the group during its acoustic rendition of the hit, "I Wanna Know What Love Is."
The ensemble, consisting of 12 students, learned the song in just a matter of days before submitting its a capella rendition. With little hope of winning, receiving the call that they will perform with Foreigner was a pleasant surprise.
"I'm still speechless," Paschal High School Director of Choral Activities Pat Banks said. "We have some amazingly talented young people in the choral program at Paschal High School. They are great kids and they truly represent Paschal High School."
The choir has managed to juggle its unique opportunity to sing with Foreigner while at the same time preparing for its biggest performance of the year. The University Interscholastic League choral concert and sight reading competition is scheduled for the following day.
The acoustic concert will feature Foreigner's classic hits with lead singer Kelly Hansen and group veterans Tom Gimbel and Jeff Pilson. In addition, guests will have the chance to bid on unique items during the concert's intermission such as a live serenade from Hansen during the second set of the event.
General admission tickets are available for $60 and special VIP tickets are $150. All ticket buyers will receive a Foreigner "Acoustique" CD and be eligible to win an autographed Foreigner guitar.
A limited number of VIP tickets and are available and include a pre-concert reception (food & open bar) at the neighboring Mercury Chop House and meet-and-greet with the Foreigner band members, beginning at 5:30 p.m. The VIPs also receive a reserved area for the concert, autographed Foreigner "Acoustique" CD and a Foreigner/Speedway Children's Charities t-shirt.
Tickets are available by visiting www.scctexas.org, www.texasmotorspeedway.com or by calling the Texas Motor Speedway ticket office at (817) 215-8500.
The NASCAR Nationwide Series returns to Texas Motor Speedway for the O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 next Friday evening and that includes the return of one of racing's most popular drivers, Danica Patrick.
Texas Motor Speedway is gearing up for Patrick's appearance by finding her "biggest little fan" with the chance to meet Patrick during race week. Fans can visit Texas Motor Speedway's Facebook page to submit a photo of a young Patrick fan or vote for their favorite. Fans have until Saturday to submit their photo.
Fans can still purchase tickets for the O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 by calling the Texas Motor Speedway ticket office at (817) 215-8500 or by visiting www.texasmotorspeedway.com.
VIP All-Star Package Up For Grabs
Texas Motor Speedway is giving its season ticket holders the chance to pick the winner of the Samsung Mobile 500 and have a shot at winning a VIP trip to the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Saturday, May 19, valued at $1,700.
Season ticket holders can visit www.texasmotorspeedway.com and submit their choice of who will be victorious in the Samsung Mobile 500 on Saturday, April 14. Those that pick the winning driver will be eligible to win the grand prize, which includes airfare and hotel accommodations, two tickets to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race on Sunday, May 20, two tickets to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series All-Star Race and pit and pre-race access.
Fans can still purchase season tickets for the 2012 season at Texas Motor Speedway, which remains the best value by offering a 25 percent discount over buying tickets individually. Season-ticket packages start as low as $270 and offer other benefits including access to the "No Limits" Garage Party presented by WinStar World Casino, discounts on pit passes and camping, and more. To purchase season tickets, call the Texas Motor Speedway ticket office at (817) 215-8500 or visit www.texasmotorspeedway.com.
Tickets are still available for the Texas Motorsports Hall of Fame Gala on Thursday, April 12, at 7 p.m. CT in the Grand Ballroom of the Speedway Club. Legendary dirt-track promoter Lanny Edwards will become the 14th member inducted into the Texas Motorsports Hall of Fame. Others being honored include defending Sprint Cup Series champion Tony Stewart, NASCAR owner Richard Childress, late two-time Indianapolis 500 champion Dan Wheldon, Foreigner and WFAA-TV Channel 8 veteran sports reporter and anchor George Riba. Tickets are available by visiting www.scctexas.org or by calling the Speedway Children's Charities office at (817) 215-8421. ... Fans attending the Samsung Mobile 500 weekend can find all the information they need to know by downloading the speedway's free mobile app. The app provides fans with the latest schedules, news, souvenir midway information and more.