Put a bow tie on it: NASCAR fans pick Chevy SS as favorite production car

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With five of the current top 10 drivers in the Sprint Cup standings driving Chevrolets, perhaps the results of a new study about NASCAR fans is not all that surprising.

As an old NASCAR saying goes, race on Sunday, sell in dealerships on Monday.

In a recent poll conducted by Kelly Blue Book (KBB.com), nearly 600 fans across the country were asked if NASCAR drivers raced in production versions of their cars, which would be the fan favorite of the three major manufacturer brands currently in use in the Sprint Cup Series.

The Chevrolet SS was the overwhelming favorite, drawing 57 percent of the fan vote, according to KBB.com.

A distant second was the Ford Fusion, which drew only 23 percent of the vote, while the Toyota Camry brought up the rear with just 20 percent of the fan vote.

“Nearly 60 percent of consumers polled believe the everyday version of the Chevrolet SS would take home first place if a NASCAR driver was racing it, demonstrating that the Chevrolet brand resonates for performance both in the racing realm and in the real world,” said Arthur Henry, analyst for Kelley Blue Book. “When NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. recently raced his Sprint Cup Series Chevrolet SS to victory lane for the third time this season alone, he helped increase the model’s perception as an attainable performance vehicle.”

(Not surprisingly, Kelly Blue Book is an associate sponsor of Earnhardt’s No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, which has three wins thus far this season. KBB will continue as one of Earnhardt’s associate sponsors next season, as well.)

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Hartley says debut F1 point would be ‘a dream’ from last on grid

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Brendon Hartley says scoring a point on his Formula 1 debut would be “a dream” after being resigned to last place on the grid for the United States Grand Prix following an engine penalty.

Porsche factory driver Hartley was drafted in by Toro Rosso to replace Pierre Gasly for the USGP when the Frenchman was ruled out due to clashing commitments in Super Formula.

Despite having not driven an F1 car since 2012, Hartley came within one-tenth of a second of making it through to Q2 on Saturday at the Circuit of The Americas, ultimately qualifying 18th.

“Obviously I’d love to be quicker but we knew we were starting at the back, so we put a lot of focus on long runs, getting the peak performance out of this Pirelli tire I didn’t get today,” Hartley told NBCSN after the race.

“In FP3 I had a good feeling. There’s a lot of quirky things to manage with these tires. Honestly I should be happy with how the weekend’s gone so far.”

The New Zealander will start last due to a 25-place grid penalty for changes made to his power unit ahead of practice on Friday, and is daring to dream of making the top 10 in his first race out of a sports car for more than five years.

“I don’t do the 24 hours completely alone!” Hartley joked. “It’s quick. It’s physical to drive. I’ll be happy to be done after an hour and a half.

“A point would be a dream starting from the back. If I can move forward and put a race together, I’ll be happy.”

The United States Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app from 2pm ET on Sunday.