NASCAR AMERICA: Martinsville Round-Up (VIDEO)

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In case you missed today’s episode of NASCAR AMERICA on NBCSN, here’s a look at some of the things you missed as the gang broke down Kurt Busch’s thrilling victory at Martinsville.

Busch was involved in an early incident on pit road with Brad Keselowski, which inflicted major front-end damage to the latter’s car. Upon returning to the race some 30 laps down, Keselowski showed his displeasure by repeatedly grinding into the side of Busch’s car.

Afterwards, Busch declared Keselowski’s retaliation as “a punk-a** move” to reporters, and he slammed the Team Penske driver again in an interview with NBCSN contributor Nate Ryan.

Keselowski has since addressed the issue on Twitter, and earlier today at Stewart-Haas Racing headquarters, Busch was asked by NBCSN reporter Kelli Stavast if things have cooled down one day later:

With Busch’s win, he is now the sixth different driver to triumph in as many Sprint Cup races this season. The Chase Grid is starting to fill up, and in Jeff Burton’s eyes, that puts pressure on the winless drivers to be as far up the points standings as possible.

Busch snapped a long winless drought yesterday, but he wasn’t the only star in Martinsville. Other drivers such as Marcos Ambrose and Aric Almirola, who both performed admirably for the mourning Richard Petty Motorsports team, also stepped up on Sunday.

Also, be sure to check out the NASCAR AMERICA archive page for more clips from previous episodes.

Marco Andretti confident that fewer tests won’t hurt Andretti Autosport

Photo: IndyCar
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A small point of debate around the 2018 aero kit has been the manufacturer test days that took place through the Fall of 2017 and into the beginning of 2018. Chiefly, the debate has centered around teams who hadn’t participated in those manufacturer test days and if they’re starting the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season at a disadvantage as a result.

Team Penske, Ed Carpenter Racing, and A.J. Foyt Racing completed test days for Chevrolet, with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing doing so for Honda.

That left teams like Andretti Autosport out of the mix, with some voicing concerns as a result.

However, in a press conference during testing at ISM Raceway last weekend, Marco Andretti explained that he thinks Andretti Autosport should be able to catch up on development, citing the team’s resources – they’re the only IndyCar team with four full-time cars in their stable – and the fact that everyone is still adapting to the new kit.

“I feel like it’s early enough days that, yes, we can catch up,” Andretti said at ISM Raceway. “When there is anything new, a new car, new aero kit, at-track days are huge. We can sim all these things we want. To really get out there and confirm what we’re learning back at the shop is another thing.”

Ryan Hunter-Reay during testing at ISM Raceway. Photo: IndyCar

Andretti continued, “Yeah, I don’t think we should look at it like we’re behind the eight ball. With a four-car team, that’s where we can use it to our benefit. So far so good.”

Teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay, echoed Andretti’s sentiments, adding that while the situation is not perfect, they will need to adapt to it in order to remain competitive.

“Any time you have a new car, to put it into perspective, we’re on track three days on a road course before we get to (the season open in St. Petersburg). That’s a very short amount of time. It’s obviously not ideal, but we’re just going to lace up our boots and get on with it. That’s all you can do.”

Andretti Autosport will have one more team test, at Sebring International Raceway later on in February, before the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

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