Saturday, July 25, 2009

Happy Happy Hour

We want to thank our friends at Firefly Vokda (on Twitter @FireflyVodka) for sending over this recipe for today's Happy Hour. You can follow along with the final practice here while enjoying this concoction!

The Keylime Fly
2 oz Firefly Vodka
Little Splash of fresh coconut milk
1 oz Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice
1 oz Seltzer Water

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Next Food Network Star is.....Mike Skinner?!

If you're familiar with this blog, I'm sure your noticing this isn't the first time that I am expressing my love of The Food Network. Nine times out of ten, you will find my TV on The Food Network or some sort of NASCAR show.

So when I got the news that Food Network star, Guy Fieri (@ChefGuyFieri on Twitter), sponsored our good friend, Tommy Baldwin for the Brickyard this weekend, I could only think one thing....boy is Tommy lucky that Guy didn't sponsor his car in Daytona this summer. I may have received a restraining order.

Guy started his food career at age 10, selling soft pretzels known as the Awesome Pretzel. He sold them out of his 3 wheeled bicycle cart that he built with his father and saved up the money he made to study abroad in France for a year when he was 16. He is the host of Diners, Drive Ins and Dives and was the season two winner of The Next Food Network Star. He is a huge personality for the Food Network and is a big fan of NASCAR.

Guy's logo will be featured on the hood of the #36 TBR Camry driven by Mike Skinner this weekend. "I was Grand Marshall at Infineon Raceway and had an amazing time. When this opportunity came up, I jumped on it. NASCAR is an amazing way to promote my brand and I look forward to supporting Tommy's efforts to continue to build his organization. We all have to start somewhere and what Tommy has done this year, I really admire," said Guy.

This would be the fourth time this season I find myself writing (and a little jealous) about The Food Network and NASCAR. The first was when Guy visited The Chef Point Cafe with Diners Drive ins and Dives. The show premiered the weekend the boys were racing in Texas. Then, Tyler Florence had a cookout with Coca Cola in Charlotte. Next thing I know, Jamie Little appeared on The Iron Chef as a guest judge. Now TBR gets sponsored by Guy Fieri. Am I starting to see a common thread here? I have a great idea for a NASCAR/Food Network show if someone wants to give me a call!

OOH La La! Get your French on with Hardees at the Brickyard this weekend!

Heading to the speedway this weekend for the Brickyard 400? Keep a look out for Hardee’s French Maid street team. This weekend, four gorgeous French Maids will be racing on Segways outside of Indianapolis Motor Speedway, passing out coupons, and introducing fans to the new Hardee’s French Dip Thickburger.

The Brickyard 400 is part of Hardee’s summer tour. Throughout July and August, the French Maids will be featherdusting fans at a variety of concerts, sporting events and festivals in 11 markets throughout the South and Midwest.

So, if you’re planning to attend the Brickyard 400, please take a minute to say “bonjour” to Sophie, Antoinette, Gabrielle and Isabelle, and get hooked up with free food from Hardee’s.

For more information on the new Thickburger, the tour, or for images of the Hardee’s French Maids, check out the website: www.frenchdiptour.com

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Martin Truex Jr and Casey Mears face off in Guitar Hero at the Brickyard with the Troops


If you are at the Brickyard this weekend, you may want to think about getting to the track a little early and cheer on Earnhardt Ganassi Racing's Martin Truex Jr and Richard Childress Racing's Casey Mears as they face the members of the Indiana National Guard troops in a serious battle. No, we arent sending these boys out to find weapons of mass destruction, just some great Guitar Hero fun with these local heroes and their families.
Drivers to compete against America’s heroes and their families in Activision and Pro vs. GI Joe Showdown.Activision Publishing (www.activision.com) and Pro vs. GI Joe (www.provsgijoe.com) are hosting an online video game Showdown, an event to connect Indiana National Guard troops with NASCAR Drivers in a battle of Guitar Hero Smash Hits on Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system from Microsoft.

This is a fitting competition and hopes to bring some luck to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Martin Truex Jr., who will be in the No. 1 Guitar Hero Smash Hits Chevrolet Impala SS this weekend. The troops’ families will also be on-hand to meet the drivers, play Guitar Hero and video chat via web-cam with their loved ones abroad.
This event will take place Friday morning at 10am at the Coca Zero Stage.

Race Fans Have Opportunity To Own Jimmie Johnson's Custom Designed MOMO Wheel From the Brickyard


CHARLOTTE, N.C. (July 14, 2009) - A piece of Jimmie Johnson's No. 48 Lowe's Impala SS from the upcoming Allstate 400 at the Brickyard will be made available through a special eBay auction with the funds benefiting the Jimmie Johnson Foundation.

A race-used, custom-designed MOMO steering wheel which Johnson will run in the July 26th race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway will be available on ebay.com/jimmiejohnsonfoundation beginning Thursday, July 23 and running through Sunday, August 2.

“We are honored that MOMO wanted to partner with us on this special wheel,” said Johnson. “I don’t usually give up many of my race used items so I hope the fans enjoy this opportunity to have a part of my car from one of the biggest races of the season. If it’s like last year, the wheel may have a little Gatorade on it from Victory Lane.”

MOMO custom designed this JJF steering wheel for Johnson and generously donated it to the foundation to help with the organization’s efforts to assist those in need. The wheel features the JJF logo embroidered on the center pad and the embossed MOMO logo and the embroidered No. 48 logo on the 6 o’clock spoke. The wheel is covered with MOMO’s trademark racing suede and has been dyed blue for this special initiative.

"To be involved with this project and to have the opportunity to contribute a very exclusive, custom and handmade steering wheel for the benefit of the Jimmie Johnson Foundation is not only a privilege but an honor for our company,” said Marc Phaneuf President MOMO Automotive Accessories Inc. “We encourage people to bid and bid high because of what the Jimmie Johnson Foundation represents and does for the community. Secondly, this will be your chance to own this very exclusive, one of its kind part off of Jimmie’s race car.”

About the Jimmie Johnson Foundation
Chandra and Jimmie Johnson launched the Jimmie Johnson Foundation in February 2006. Johnson, the three- time reigning Sprint Cup champion, drives the No. 48 Lowe’s Impala SS in NASCAR’s top series. The mission of the foundation is to assist children, families, and communities in need throughout the United States. The foundation has committed more than $2 million to various charities. For additional information on the Jimmie Johnson Foundation, please visit www.jimmiejohnsonfoundation.org.

About the Jimmie Johnson Foundation Online Charity Auction
Chandra and Jimmie Johnson launched the online charity auction site in conjunction with the creation of the Jimmie Johnson Foundation in February 2006. The site has raised more than $315,000 for the foundation. Past items have included a meet and greet with Jimmie Johnson, an autographed Jimmie Johnson helmet, and lunch and a tour of the 24/48 shop with crew chief Chad Knaus. To bid on unique memorabilia, visit www.ebay.com/jimmiejohnsonfoundation.

A Fast Lap with Nicole Manske

Today, we would like to introduce you to Nicole Manske, host of NASCAR Now, the daily news show on ESPN2.

Nicole is engaged to IndyCar Series driver Ryan Briscoe and they live on Lake Norman in North Carolina. She was a semifinalist in the 1998 Miss Teen USA Pageant and was Miss Illinois Teen USA that same year.Nicole and Danica Patrick attended the same high school in Roscoe IL and were cheerleaders together

What music have you recently put on your iPod?
The very last song I downloaded was Weezer’s Buddy Holly. It’s my favorite song to play on Rock Band. But, I’ve got a little bit of everything on my iPod…country, rock, alternative, dance…hip hop. I think I use my iPhone more for watching movies than listening to music. I finally just got around to downloading one of my all time favorites…Wedding Crashers. It’s a classic that never fails to make me laugh.

What was the last movie you saw (theater or rented)?
I am almost ashamed to admit this, but the last movie I saw watched is "I Hate Valentine’s Day." It was available in my hotel room as a “special preview.” What can I say? It was a weak moment. Bad, bad, bad! I'm all for romantic comedies, but this wasn't romantic or funny. It was highly disappointing.

What are your favorite TV shows?
Thursday nights are sacred. I love Grey’s Anatomy! But, I also carve out time for Biggest Loser when it’s on. It can be a little sappy, but the contestants transform their lives so completely…I find it terribly inspiring.

What other sporting teams/events do you follow?
Green Bay Packers. I was born in Wisconsin, and the majority of my family still lives there. I think they all bleed green and gold. Needless to say, I’m still mad at Brett Favre, and don’t even get me started on how I’ll feel if he ends up with the Vikings. Bad news…

What is one personal item you can not live without?
Do I have to pick just one? I really can’t live without my phone/computer. Between my time in Connecticut hosting NASCAR Now and my time at the track, I spend about 200 days on the road during the NASCAR season. My phone/computer is the only way I can stay connected with my family and friends. I love Skype. Ryan (my fiance) and I both have it on our computers…so even though I spend most of my time in a different state, I still get to see him and our dog, Sam. Plus, we set my parents up with Skype as well. They live in Illinois. It allows me to see them more often, and they don’t feel like they have to rely on NASCAR Now to see me. That said, I still don’t think they’ve ever missed a show!

What are your favorite places to visit?

Don’t laugh, but my favorite place to visit in-season is home…which is in North Carolina. That’s pretty sad, huh? It’s just such a great place to relax and hit the reset button during the crazy NASCAR season. In the off season, I like to visit my family in Roscoe (IL). My future in-laws live in Sydney, Australia. It's not the worst place to “have” to visit. This off season, Ryan and I are getting married in Maui and honeymooning in Fiji…you can add those two places to the list as well.

What is your favorite clothing brand?
I love jeans. I think I have more William Rast in my closet than any other brand. For all things not jeans...I think Hugo Boss makes some of my absolute favorite pieces.

What is your favorite book or publication?
I’m not sure I can just pick one. Unfortunately, I can’t blow you away with some great literary work of art because I’m a huge fan of the beach reads. You know…the books you pick up when you don’t want to think, and you just want to get away. Though…the last book I read was My Sister’s Keeper. Great book. Big time tear jerker, but what is up with the movie???? The ending is drastically different!

What is your favorite activity to do in your off time?
I spend A LOT of time on the water…wakeboarding, skiing, wakesurfing. I’m not exactly in line to be the next Dallas Friday, but I’ve gotten pretty good at eliminating the "face plant" from my book of tricks. I also like to cook. It’s not often that I get to have home cooked meals, so I like to challenge myself in the kitchen. I’ve recently started experimenting with Indian food. We didn’t have any leftovers…so I think I did pretty well.

What is your favorite cuisine?
I like food. Burger, no bun, with lots of cheese and fries is ALWAYS a good thing. Indian food is the cheat food. Sushi is pretty much a staple. I visit my favorite sushi place in Connecticut on almost a daily basis. But, my all time favorite food? MOM’s TACOS! I am convinced they are positively the worst food for you, but they are oh, so yummy! You can’t eat them often, but whenever I make it home to Roscoe, they are on the menu my first night. It’s tradition!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Seriously, is it the economy or are you all just out of ideas?

One thing you will always see me talk about is who is the Grand Marshal and who is singing the National Anthem. I got to be honest this year, I am just really disappointed. Lately, the choice hasnt been all that grand....John from Papa Johns? Random athletic coach having nothing to do with the race's city host? Pageant runner ups who CLEARLY danced instead of the sung the National Anthem during their competition? I am just wondering what is going on...I guess I am in a little disbelief that they couldn't find anyone more suitable (note I did not say better) than a first round draft pick at the Brickyard. Maybe I am just crazy...but why the lack of talent lately?

Michael Annett finishes high at Gateway!


One of the Fashionista's favorite driver in the Nationwide series Germain Racing’s Michael Annett was the highest finishing rookie candidate in Saturday’s Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 presented by Ventrilo at Gateway International Raceway, earning Raybestos Rookie of the Race honors.

Annett was 13th in both Nationwide Series practice sessions on Friday at Gateway, but the team had an unforeseen issue when they went out to qualify on Saturday afternoon, and the young driver started the race in 38th. Driving from the back of the pack to secure his second top-10 finish of the season, Annett finished the Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 presented by Ventrilo in seventh as the highest finishing rookie and with the most green flag passes of any driver. This was Annett’s second seventh place finish of the 2009 Nationwide Series season, with the first being at Kentucky Speedway in June.

“It was a battle all night. We started 38th in the field, but it was great to see our No. 15 team never give up and just keep moving the car closer to the front,” said Annett. “We’ve struggled some this season, but we’ve been aiming for consistency. Earning this top-10 finish is definitely a good start to getting where we’d like to be.”

Annett was up 10 spots to 28th in the first five laps of the 200 lap race. The rookie drove his No. 15 Ventrilo Toyota Camry into the top-20 by lap 30 with lap times consistent with those of the top-eight drivers. Battling for the lucky dog pass, Annett earned the free pass for the fourth restart of the race on lap 95. Now on the lead lap, Annett was working his way from 17th into the top-15.

Only taking tires and gassing up on pit stops, the No. 15 Germain Racing pit crew encouraged Annett to conserve fuel during the last 75 laps, worried that with fuel they would be 3 laps short of making it all the way if the team didn’t make another stop.

The seventh yellow flag of the night was thrown on lap 176. Annett was 8th at the call of the caution, and under the direction of Crew Chief Mike Hillman Sr., the No. 15 came to pit road and opted to take only two right side tires and a fuel top-off.

Restarting in 6th with only 19 laps to go, Annett drove into the top-five and up to fourth on lap 183. In a strong battle against some of the top competitors in the series, Annett finished seventh in the Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 presented by Ventrilo in the Ventrilo sponsored No. 15.

An excited Annett said, “We’re really happy with our seventh place finish tonight. I’m really proud of the entire No. 15 Germain Racing group and pleased with the calls Mike Hillman Sr. made on pit road, especially with the two tire stop at the end that put us in position for the last 15 lap run. I’m happy that we were able to earn a top-10 finish with the folks from Ventrilo there to see it.”

Annett heads to O’Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis, Indiana this week, up one spot in driver points to 14th. The No. 15 Germain Racing team will compete in the NASCAR Nationwide Series Kroger 200 at O’Reilly Raceway Park on Saturday. Live TV and radio coverage of the event starts at 7:30 p.m. on ESPN and MRN Radio.

For more information on Michael Annett, please visit http://www.michaelannett.com/ and http://www.germainracing.com/.