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Gift ideas for NASCAR stars.


While it always seems that Christmas rolls around faster than Carl Edwards can turn a lap at Bristol Motor Speedway, Yuletide is here again, and it's time to speculate on what Santa might be putting under the tree for some of NASCAR's favourite personalities.

With Jimmie Johnson scooping a third straight Cup Series title, and others seemingly not getting what they asked for this time last year, some of the requests might be for more of the same, but there are also a few novel requests being posted this time around.

For Jeff Gordon: a fifth Sprint Cup championship, and his first under the Chase format. Under the previous scoring system, Gordon would have six titles at this point, but he's hungry to prove he can win the Chase before he retires. Gordon will turn 40 in August 2011 and, based on his contribution to the sport - and to the world overall - there's no one in the garage more deserving of success. Gordon won't match Richard Petty's record 200 wins, but he's already granted more than 200 wishes to children battling life-threatening diseases under the auspices of the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

For Jimmie Johnson: a handicap. Now that he's developed a strong affinity for golf, Johnson will certainly understand the concept. When you're demonstrably better than your competition, you have to start at a disadvantage. Why not make Johnson sit out the Chase race of his choice, just to see whether any of his rivals can score more points in ten races than Johnson accumulates in nine. Carl Edwards was the only Chase driver within 195 points - the total for a race winner who leads the most laps - at the end of the 2008 season....

For Carl Edwards: a happy marriage. Edwards will take the plunge in January, when he plans to marry fellow Columbia native Dr Katherine Downey. From all appearances, it's an excellent match. Not only is Dr Kate smart and personable, but she's also a specialist in physical medicine and rehabilitation. If Edwards strains a muscle during one of his more ambitious workout sessions, she'll be there to help.

For AJ Allmendinger and Regan Smith: full-time Sprint Cup rides. Not to mention any names, but these two guys are more deserving of driving contracts than a number of 'ride-arounds' who are signed to long-term deals. Allmendinger showed what he can do at the end of the season, when, as a temp, he outran both his stablemates at Gillett Evernham Motorsports over the final five races. As more highly-touted open-wheel stars fell by the wayside, Smith persevered to win Raybestos Rookie of the Year honours. He also won the second race at Talladega - until a subjective call by NASCAR, for passing Tony Stewart beneath the yellow line, took the victory away.

For Tony Stewart: one victory in 2009. That's would go a long way toward validating Stewart's choice to leave Joe Gibbs Racing to pursue the elusive dream of success as an owner/driver. Stewart may be mercurial, but he's also a fan favourite, and he's also one of NASCAR's most generous spirits, as his unflagging commitment to Kyle and Pattie Petty's Victory Junction Gang Camp will attest. NASCAR needs all the high-profile drivers it can muster, and Stewart is near the top of the list. The sport also needs him to be competitive.

For the Budweiser Shootout: a second stab at defining the field. Though it may not be a points race, the Budweiser Shootout will kick off the 2009 season on 7 February, and the field won't include Stewart, 2008 Daytona 500 winner Ryan Newman or Juan Pablo Montoya, all of whom are out because of manufacturer changes between seasons. We've whipped this horse before, but it's time for Budweiser, Daytona International Speedway and NASCAR collectively to augment the qualifying system that limits the field to the top six cars of each manufacturer, based on owner points. During this transition year, why not grandfather in all pole winners and previous champions and give the fans the star power they deserve?

by Reid Spencer/Sporting News

There are probably more deserving gift ideas for others in the NASCAR fold, so why not let us know your thoughts via the Crash.net forum.....


Related Pictures

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AJ Allmendinger - #10 McDonalds Dodge [Pic credit: image.net]
Chase Elliott, driver of the #24 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet SS, stops in his pit on his way to a fifth place finish Saturday night, April 9, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Texas. Elliott takes over the #24 car from retired driver Jeff Gordon.  (Photo by Ashley R Dickerson for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS, races to a fourth place finish Saturday night, April 9, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Texas.  (Photo by Alan Marler for Chevy Racing)
Carl Edwards, driver of the #19 Stanley Toyota, leads the field to the green flag to start the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on April 9, 2016 in Fort Worth, Texas.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Carl Edwards, driver of the #19 Stanley Toyota, poses with the Coors Light Pole Award after qualifying for the pole position for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on April 8, 2016 in Fort Worth, Texas.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Carl Edwards, driver of the #19 Stanley Toyota, poses with the Coors Light Pole Award after qualifying for the pole position for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on April 8, 2016 in Fort Worth, Texas.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images)
AJ Allmendinger, driver of the #47 Kroger/Butterfinger/Coffeemate Chevrolet SS, finishes in second place, Sunday April 3, 2016, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Martinsville Speedway in Ridgeway, VA (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s/Superman Chevrolet SS, races to his 77th career victory, Sunday, March 20, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.  (Photo by Garry Eller for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s/Superman Chevrolet SS, celebrates his 77th career win with a victory lap and checkered flag, Sunday, March 20, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.  (Photo by Garry Eller for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s/Superman Chevrolet SS, celebrates his 77th career victory Sunday, March 20, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.  (Photo by Gregg Ellman for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s/Superman Chevrolet SS, celebrates his 77th career victory with a wave of the chequered flag Sunday, March 20, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Garry Eller for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s/Superman Chevrolet SS, celebrates his 77th career victory, Sunday, March 20, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Harold Hinson for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s/Superman Chevrolet SS, celebrates his 77th career victory, Sunday, March 20, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Harold Hinson for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2016 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2016 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s / Superman Chevrolet, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2016 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s / Superman Chevrolet, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2016 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s / Superman Chevrolet, celebrates after taking the chequered flag during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2016 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)

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