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Joey Logano wins Pure Michigan 400 from pole position at MIS

Joey

Joey Logano took first at the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway last Friday. It was his first win since joining Penske Racing, and the win wasn’t the only highlight of the day. Logano broke the track record of 203.241 mph previously helped by Marcos Ambrose. Logano’s No. Shell/Pennzoil Ford Fusion took the track at 203.949 mph. His qualifying lap enters the record books as the ninth fastest pole-winning lap in the history of the Sprint Cup Series.

Kurt Busch and Jimmie Johnson also bested Ambrose’s record, coming in as the second- and third-place qualifiers for the day. Driver Dale Earnhardt, Jr., acknowledged the speed, saying, “The car’s got a lot of grip. I think the track is even more abrasive than the first trip here. The cars are carrying a little more speed than the first trip here in practice and qualifying.”

Overall, it was a pretty good day for Logano on the MIS, which has been described as the sport’s fastest track thanks to the greater amount of banking. He tailed Mark Martin, his childhood hero, in the final stages of the race, finally taking the lead when the No. 55 Toyota ran out of fuel with only three laps to go. Not only did he best Cup veterans Kevin Harvick and Kurt Busch, but he also moved from 16th place in series points to the number 13 spot. There are still three races left before the Chase for the Championship, and Logano’s momentum might push him far enough to make it.

Logano began racing in 2009 at Joe Gibbs racing. This win was the third in his Cup career and the first for 2013. The risk that Roger Penske took on the young driver has paid off. Penske, former owner of MIS during the early 1970s, called Logano’s win one of the biggest in 30 years. It was particularly meaningful since Penske hails from Detroit.

“What a great time to win, being in Ford’s backyard, being in Roger’s backyard,” Logano said in an after-race interview. “I’m glad to make the most of it.”

Rounding out the race’s top ten were Mark Martin, Jeff Burton, Juan Pablo Montoya, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Denny Hamlin, Brad Keselowski and Kyle Busch.

[Photo Source: http://www.freep.com]

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General

AJ Allmendinger dominates Nationwide race at Mid-Ohio, Sam Hornish resumes championship points lead

AJ

The NASCAR Nationwide Series made its first appearance at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for the first time in the history this past weekend to hold the Nationwide Children’s Hospital 200. The new track quickly proved to be one of the most difficult racetracks on the Nationwide Series this season. While all of the series regulars and road course specialists competed at the Mid-Ohio track last Saturday, the race had an extremely surprising winner.

AJ Allmendinger spent almost the entire race at the lead, and he would have been able to coast to victory if it was not for a caution with only two laps remaining in the race. The seventh and final caution of the 92-lap race forced all of the contestants to bunch together before they ran the final two laps of the race. The caution may have put the final result of the race in doubt if Allmendinger did not have such a dominant car all day. As soon as the flag waved for the final two laps, Allemdinger was able to jump ahead of the pack to take the checkered flag with little pressure from Michael McDowell and Sam Hornish Jr. behind him. McDowell was second and Sam Hornish Jr. assumed the series points lead after finishing third. Max Papis and Brian Vickers rounded out the top five.

The race last Saturday at Mid-Ohio was only Allemdinger’s second race on the Nationwide Series due to the suspension. He was also able to win his previous race at the Road American race track in Wisconsin. If AJ Allmendinger is able to keep up the dominant performances in his next few races, then he may be able to earn back the full-time job that he lost due to the suspension.

 

[Source: usatoday.com]

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General

The Dangers of Drowsy Driving

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Everyday, there are motorists on the roads operating on too little sleep. When a driver is drowsy, they put themselves and all other drivers in danger. Falling asleep at the wheel causes a car to drift into other lanes, onto shoulders or even into buildings. Besides falling asleep, drowsy drivers pose many other risks. These drivers are not as aware of what is going on around them, have a slower reaction time than normal, and tend to be more aggressive towards other drivers.

When a driver is unaware of their surroundings, their guard is down and they cannot prevent an accident as readily. Alert drivers are trained to keep an eye out in all directions for potential dangers. A sleepy driver is not as likely to notice these dangers and therefore may not be able to avoid them before an accident happens.

Having a quick reaction time is a key component to safe driving. When a driver is drowsy, this reaction time is much slower than usual. This makes it nearly impossible to avoid certain dangers in the road. If a car cuts in front of a driver, being able to apply the breaks quickly is necessary to avoid a collision. A driver operating on too little sleep may not have the ability to react quickly enough.

Nearly everyone’s temper is shorter when they have not had enough sleep. A quick temper and aggressive driving could cause an accident. Aggression can cause a driver to cut people off, chase a driver who cut them off, or take other unnecessary risks.

If possible, two drivers should travel together on a long trip. That way they can take turns driving if one or the other is too drowsy to drive. A driver traveling alone who has had too little sleep should not be on the road at all. If a sleepy driver thinks they will be okay to drive, but then finds that they are nodding off, they need to find a place to pull over. Stopping at a hotel for the night and starting over in the morning may cost some money and time, but it may very well save someone’s life.

[Source: Edmunds.com]

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General

The Actual Cost of Filling Up Your Tank

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For anyone who drives a vehicle every day, visiting the gas station to fill up is almost second nature. Going up to the pump, swiping your card or paying the cashier, inserting the nozzle, and squeezing the trigger is so commonplace to us that most of us don’t even bother to look at how much we spent that day. In fact, we definitely don’t take the time to see how much we’ve spent over the course of a month, much less a whole year.

In a recent post on the Quicken Loans Zing Blog, author Anthony Fontana took a look at how much we’re actually spending at the gas pump, breaking it down by cars, trucks and motorcycles. In the post, Fontana calculates how much an average person spends for each type of vehicle based on an estimated price of $3.85 per gallon.

For example, someone driving a vehicle with a 15-gallon tank is spending $57.75 every time they fill up. If that person has a commute that forces them to fill up once per week, then he or she is spending nearly $3,000 per year at the gas station – not including snacks, of course. Even more revealing was the annual fuel costs for a 25-gallon tank truck – over $5,000.

Obviously, these are just a couple of examples with specific parameters and each person or family’s fuel cost will be different due to various factors – vehicle size, vehicle fuel rating, commute distance and the current price of gasoline, among others.

To read the entire post from Fontana, including the estimated annual fuel cost of driving a motorcycle, check it out at the Quicken Loans Zing! blog: http://www.quickenloans.com.

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General

Should I Lease or Finance My New Car?

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When the time comes to purchase a new vehicle, you are definitely going to have some decisions to make. Deciding whether to lease or finance is a little bit easier when you consider the following factors.

The Overall Cost
Ultimately, financing a car is going to cost you more money in the end. You are buying the car, so you will have to make monthly payments until the entire cost of the car is paid off. With a lease, you are making payments for a shorter amount of time, and you are not paying the entire price of the car. You can generally make lower down payments with a lease as well.

Getting Approved
Speaking of the cost, you also must determine which plan you are more likely to get approved for. Of course, applying for pre-approval can give you a decent idea of the cost. In most cases, getting approved for a lease will be a little bit easier than obtaining approval for financing. Since you do not need to pay as much money overall, the restrictions are usually not as strict.

The Amount of Miles
You own the car when you have a finance agreement. Barring any extenuating circumstances or specific programs, you should not have a limit on the number of miles that you can drive each year. However, with a lease, these limits are common. The limits are usually rather generous, and you can often negotiate for more so that they are not too constricting. Still, if you have a job that requires you to drive many miles on a regular basis, a lease just might not be an option.

How You Use Cars
If you are a person who tends to go through cars in rapid succession, then a lease is probably a better choice for you. Many lease agreements last for 36 months, so at the end of that time period, you will be free to purchase or lease a new vehicle. If you want to hold on to your car until it grows old, choose to finance your car.

Choosing whether to lease or finance your car is definitely a topic that you want to think about. A car is a huge purchase, and a rash decision could lead you down a path that you do not want to go financially.

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General

Keeping Your Tires Up To Speed

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It goes without saying that it is important to properly maintain a vehicle. Not only does it increase the overall life of the vehicle, it fills the owner with confidence knowing that the vehicle is well-kept. With that said, one of the most crucial parts of a vehicle is its tires. The four tips below will help keep your tires in good shape and ensure that they last until its advertised lifespan.

1. Tire Pressure

One of the most overlooked vehicle care tests is checking the tire pressure. When tires aren’t properly or evenly inflated it can affect multiple aspects of the driving experience. Dipping gas mileage, poor handling and uneven tire wear can occur if you don’t check your tire pressure often – at least every two weeks. Buy a tire pressure gauge and consult your vehicle’s manual for you tires’ proper inflation rate, and make sure your tires stay there.

2. Balance and Rotation

It is vital to balance and rotate the tires, yet many drivers go without doing this either. Tires suffer from damage when they gain exposure to several road conditions, and one side of the tire may change. Rotating the tires on a frequent basis – every 12,000 miles – will allow the tires to wear equally, increasing the longevity of the tires. Maintaining tire balance will keep your vehicle running smoothly at highway speeds.

3. Visual Inspection

Many drivers do not take the time to inspect their vehicles. We sometimes get so busy that months go by before we notice a scratch on the rear passenger-side door. A quick visual inspection every couple of weeks can keep you up-to-date on the condition of your vehicle’s tires. The last thing anyone wants to do is drive on a bald tire. Not only is it unsightly, it’s also unsafe.

 4. Talk to a Professional

As with any issue you experience with your vehicle, if there is something you are unsure of or need help with, you can always go to a professional. When it comes to your tires, no issue is too small to seek help. Tires play a crucial role in the overall performance of a vehicle. Something that goes overlooked not only could decrease the longevity of your tires, but it could also be a safety hazard.

The four tips above will help drivers stay smart and stay safe in the heavy driving season of summer.

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General

Logano Conquers the Monster Mile at Dover

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THE RACE 

5-Hour Energy 200 at Dover International Speedway (1-mile speedway, Dover, Del.)
June 1, 2013

THE RESULTS

The No. 22 Hertz Ford Mustang
Start Position: 6
Finish Position: 1
Status: Running
Owner Points Position: 3

THE RACE REVIEW     

· Joey Logano qualified the No. 22 Hertz Ford Mustang in the sixth position for Saturday afternoon’s race at Dover International Speedway.

· Over the first 30 laps, Logano moved his way from sixth to third, fighting a car that was loose on corner entry and tight in the center.

· Following the second round of pit stops, Logano took the lead for the first time on lap 53 after a solid stop by the No. 22 Hertz team.  Logano led the next 29 laps.

· The race turned into a pit strategy event. Logano continued to run up front, but often fell behind other cars that were taking two tires when Logano and crew chief Jeremy Bullins called for four.

· The rest of the afternoon, Logano never ran worse than third.

· Logano came into the pits third on lap 163. A quick call by Bullins to take two tires got the No. 22 Ford out first.

· When the green flew, Logano was able to pull away from the field, leading the final 37 laps en route to his first NASCAR Nationwide Series victory of the season.

· The win, Logano’s 19th-career Nationwide Series triumph, was his third-straight at Dover. Logano won both races at the “Monster Mile” last season.

· The win was also Logano’s first at Penske Racing and first behind the wheel of a Ford Mustang. It was also Ford Racing’s 199th NASCAR Nationwide Series victory.

· With the win, Logano moved the No. 22 car within eight points of second-place in the NASCAR Nationwide Series Owner’s Point standings.

WHAT THEY ARE SAYING 

HOW DOES IT FEEL TO FINALLY WIN AGAIN?

“It feels great. I want to say I wish it wouldn’t have taken this long, but this is just our fourth race of the season and we’ve been able to finish in the top-five every race so far. But it’s pretty awesome to get another win here and to get my first win racing for Roger Penske. All you have to do it look at the list of drivers that have won driving for Roger and to know that your name is on that list now is pretty amazing. Then to have Hertz on board with us and win in their first race on the car is pretty awesome as well. It just doesn’t get much better than that. Three in a row at Dover is a pretty amazing accomplishment.”

HOW KEY WAS THAT LAST PIT STOP?

“It was everything. I didn’t really know we were going to do two tires until Jeremy (Bullins, crew chief) told me to go over the radio. But he knew what he was doing. He knew if we got out first and enough other guys had two tires, we had a shot. I don’t know if we had the best car here, but we had one of the two best cars for sure. But you have to take them how you get them. We put ourselves in position to win the race and that’s what we did. I’m really happy for Hertz, Penske and all of the guys on the team. Now we need to use the momentum and get our second next week.”

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