Danica Patrick, SHR And One Cure Partner Up At Bristol

Danica Patrick

As Danica Patrick and the No. 10 Ford Fusion team for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) return to Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway for Saturday’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event, they will be racing to bring awareness to a special program: One Cure.

One Cure is a project led by the Flint Animal Cancer Center at Colorado State University. The One Cure program is founded on the principle that cancer affects all creatures and that treatment breakthroughs come through collaboration between scientists and doctors working with people and animals. This approach is known as comparative oncology and it is the guiding concept of One Cure and the Flint Animal Cancer Center at CSU. The center works to improve prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer in pets, and teams with the human medical field to translate research findings that will help people with cancer.

The center sees more than 1,500 new animal cancer patients every year, with approximately 400 patients enrolling in carefully monitored clinical trials specific to their cancer type. The canine and feline patients are helping pioneer cancer research, moving cutting-edge treatments out of the laboratory and into clinical practice, ultimately providing hope to the next generation of animal and human cancer patients.

The One Cure initiative was first featured on Patrick’s No. 10 Ford earlier this year at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City. As the proud “mom” of a 3-year-old miniature Siberian Husky named Dallas and a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois named Ella, the One Cure program is a cause near and dear to Patrick.

“It’s great to have One Cure on the car this weekend,” Patrick said. “I love dogs and I’m glad we can bring more awareness to all of the work the team at the Flint Animal Cancer Center is doing. Our pets are members of our families and, when they aren’t well, we want to do everything we can to help.

“Cancer has touched so many of us. Knowing we can use what we learn from keeping our animals healthy to potentially help save human lives is a cause I’m honored to support.”

When Patrick straps into the No. 10 One Cure Ford Saturday night, she will make her 11th NASCAR Cup Series start at Bristol. Her best NASCAR Cup Series finish to date at the .533-mile oval is a ninth-place effort Patrick earned in April 2015. In last year’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol, Patrick started 29th and finished 22nd. In April, an accident relegated the team to a 36th-place finish.

In addition to Patrick’s NASCAR Cup Series experience at Bristol, she’s also competed in three NASCAR Xfinity Series races at the track. In that time, her best result was a ninth-place finish earned in August 2012.

As they return to Bristol looking to improve upon their results at the track, Patrick and the No. 10 One Cure Ford team will be ready to bring attention to the One Cure program.

DANICA PATRICK, Driver of the No. 10 One Cure Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing: 
What are your overall thoughts heading into Bristol?

“I’ve liked Bristol since I went there the first time. I remember when I set foot onto that track, it was the day before, it was load-in day and I looked out there and you’re standing on the straightaway, but it sure seems like a corner. It’s a very cool track and a spectacle for the fans. I feel like that is always the one that everyone says, ‘I want to come see a Bristol race.’ It’s always entertaining there for the fans and, hopefully, we can put on another good show for them this week.”

How aggressive do you have to be?

“Every single one of us is going to go as absolutely hard as possible. There’s never a plan to back off or go easy or anything like that, other than if you are saving fuel out there on a strategy at the end of the race. You always go as fast as you can, all the time.”

How grueling is 500 laps at Bristol?

“It’s fine. I think it is a little daunting to say 500 laps, but there are a lot of times that we do 500 laps, or 500 miles, and this is just one of them. I feel like no matter what happens – whether it’s a 400-mile race or a 500-lap race – you find your rhythm. Time goes by fast sometimes, and then sometimes it’s slow. All I hope is that the car has a good balance because, when it doesn’t, that’s when the laps seem wrong. If we can just get into a rhythm, find ourselves in a good spot and have a consistent car throughout the race, then the time does go pretty quickly, usually.”

Fans come to Bristol and typically expect a lot of beating and banging. Do you like that kind of racing?

“Yes, I enjoy it. I mean, I don’t mind some beating and banging out there. I don’t mind pushing your way around a little bit. It just happens. It’s just the nature of short tracks when you’re running really close to one another. You put 40 cars out on a track the size of Bristol and you’re filling up a lot of the track. The short tracks are conducive to close racing since aerodynamics don’t come into play quite as much.”

One Cure Racing Team Report

Round 24 of 36 – Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race – Bristol

Car No.: 10 – One Cure Ford Fusion

 

At-Track PR Contact: Annette Randall, True Speed Communication (704-875-3388 ext. 805, Annette.Randall@TrueSpeedCommunication.com)

Primary Team Members:

Driver: Danica Patrick

Hometown: Roscoe, Illinois

 

Crew Chief: Billy Scott

Hometown: Land O’ Lakes, Florida

 

Car Chief: Tony Cardamone

Hometown: Bristol, Virginia

 

Engine Builder: Roush Yates Engines

Headquarters: Mooresville, North Carolina

 

Engine Specialist: Evan Cupples

Hometown: Hudson, Illinois

 

Spotter: Brandon Benesch

Hometown: Cumberland, Wisconsin

Over-The-Wall Crew Members:

Gas Man: Justin Wilson

Hometown: St. Paul, Minnesota

 

Front Tire Changer: Ryan Mulder

Hometown: Sioux City, Iowa

 

Second Gas Man: Nate Spoor

Hometown: Penn Yan, New York

 

Front Tire Carrier: Tyler Bullard

Hometown: King, North Carolina

 

Windshield: Kyle Anderson (also serves as interior mechanic)

Hometown: Jewell, Iowa

 

Rear Tire Changer: Jonathan Sherman

Hometown: Monroe, Louisiana

 

Jackman: Nate House

Hometown: Gastonia, North Carolina

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Jeremy Howard

Hometown: Dalhart, Texas

Road Crew Members:

Truck Drivers: Wayne Anderson and Larry Lush

Hometown: West Covina, California and Waynesville, North Carolina, respectively

 

Tire Specialist: Nathan McGuire

Hometown: Palmyra, New York

 

Shock Specialist: Aaron Kuehn

Hometown: Kensington, Connecticut

 

Engineers: Scott Bingham and William Lee

Hometowns: Lawrenceville, Georgia and Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina, respectively

 

Underneath Mechanic: Nick McIntosh

Hometown: Havre, Montana

 

Front End Mechanic: Joe Zanolini

Hometown: Sybertsville, Pennsylvania

Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Notes of Interest: 
  • The Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway will mark Danica Patrick’s 178th career start in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. In 10 previous starts at the .533-mile oval, Patrick’s best NASCAR Cup Series finish is a ninth-place effort she earned in April 2015. In three Xfinity Series starts at the track, her top result was a ninth-place finish scored in August 2012.
  • One Cure: Cancer is cancer. The One Cure program is founded on the principle that cancer affects all creatures and that treatment breakthroughs come through collaboration between scientists and doctors working with people and animals. This approach is known as comparative oncology and it is the guiding concept of One Cure and the Flint Animal Cancer Center at Colorado State University. The center works to improve prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer in pets, and teams with the human medical field to translate research findings that will help people with cancer.
  • Homecoming: Bristol Motor Speedway is the home track for Tony Cardamone, the car chief on the No. 10 One Cure Ford Fusion team for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR). Cardamone hails from Bristol, Virginia, which lies just across the state line from Bristol, Tennessee.
  • Dallas Dogs Available: A plush version of Dallas Stenhouse, the 3-year-old miniature Siberian Husky that belongs to Patrick and her boyfriend Ricky Stenhouse Jr., is now available for sale. Race fans can purchase their own Dallas plush dog at the SHR team store in Kannapolis, North Carolina, the SHR online store and at Shop.DanicaPatrick.com. A portion of the proceeds from all sales will benefit animal charities.
  • For the History Books: Since Patrick began competing in NASCAR on a part-time basis in 2010, she has made plenty of history. Here is a recap of how she has altered the record books through the years:
    • Became the first woman to win a NASCAR Cup Series pole when she set the fastest time in qualifying for the 2013 Daytona 500.
    • Led laps 90 to 91 of the 2013 Daytona 500, becoming the first female to lead NASCAR’s most prestigious race. She also led laps 127 to 129.
    • Became the first woman to lead a NASCAR race under green (Daytona 2013). Janet Guthrie led five laps under yellow in 1977 at Ontario (Calif.) Motor Speedway.
    • Finished 2013 Daytona 500 in eighth place, the highest finishing position ever for a woman in the “Great American Race.”
    • Finished 10th in 2012 Xfinity Series points, the highest points finish by a woman in the history of NASCAR’s top three series (Cup, Xfinity, Truck).
    • Competed in every NASCAR Cup Series race in 2013, becoming the first female driver to complete an entire season in the series.
    • Became the first female to compete in the non-points NASCAR All-Star race (2013) and Sprint Unlimited (2014).
    • Have the most starts of any female in NASCAR Cup Series competition.
    • With seven top-10 finishes, holds the record for the most top-10 finishes of any female in NASCAR Cup Series competition.
  • History Maker in IndyCar: Patrick became the first woman to win a major-league open-wheel race in a North American series in April 2008 by winning the IndyCar Series Japan Indy 300 at the Twin Ring Motegi oval in Japan.
  • Big Stage: In seven Indianapolis 500 starts, Patrick finished in the top-10 six times, including a third-place result in 2009, the best finish ever for a woman in the historic race.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Kurt Busch Enters His 600th Cup Race At Bristol

Kurt Busch pit stop

It all started on September 24, 2000 at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. Kurt Busch, who was just 22 years old, drove the No. 97 John Deere Ford Taurus for Roush Fenway Racing in the MBNA.com 400. It was his first career start in NASCAR’s top series.

At Saturday night’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol Motor (Tenn.) Speedway, Busch will make his 600th NASCAR Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start. And for the driver of the No. 41 Monster Energy/Haas Automation Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), there is no better place for it to happen than at Bristol.

Busch has five wins, nine top-five finishes and 16 top-10s at the .533-mile concrete oval and has led 1,062 laps in 33 career starts there.

He scored his first career NASCAR Cup Series win at Bristol in March 2002. He started 27th and led 89 laps en route to that maiden victory. It was only his third visit to the .533-mile, high-banked oval, making him the only driver to record his first win at Bristol in fewer than four attempts.

His five Bristol wins – March 2002 and 2003, August 2003, March 2004 and 2006 – tie him with his younger brother Kyle Busch as the winningest active NASCAR Cup Series drivers at Bristol.

Busch even completed the Bristol sweep in 2003, winning both the spring and fall NASCAR Cup Series events. He started ninth and led 116 laps in March while starting fifth and leading 121 laps in August. In March 2004, Busch went on to record his third consecutive win at Bristol when he started 13th and led 119 laps on his way to victory lane.

He is one of four drivers to win three or more consecutive Cup Series races at Bristol. Fred Lorenzen won three in a row starting with the fall race in 1963, followed by a sweep of both 1964 events. Cale Yarborough won four in a row with sweeps in 1976 and 1977. Darrell Waltrip won seven in a row, including sweeps in 1981, 1982 and 1983, then a win at the March 1984 race.

Busch has led laps in 15 of his 33 career Cup Series starts at Bristol and he has led more than 100 laps four times, including three consecutive races – 116 in March 2003, 121 in August 2003, and 119 in March 2004.

But on that day at Dover 17 years ago, the young Busch started 10th and finished a solid 18th with Jeff Hammond as his crew chief.

His current team owner Tony Stewart won the race, while Johnny Benson and Ricky Rudd were second and third. Of the 43 drivers in the field, only Matt Kenseth, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Busch are full-time in the series this season.

Busch’s current crew chief Tony Gibson refers to everyone as “Old Man.” But Busch doesn’t feel like an “Old Man,” and this week at Bristol, he’s hoping he can add to his Bristol – and NASCAR – legacy.

KURT BUSCH, Driver of the No. 41 Monster Energy/Haas Automation Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing: 
You’re making your 600th NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series start at this week’s race at Bristol. Can you talk about that?

“It’s a fun number. You don’t think about it when you’re racing. You don’t have it as a goal when you start out racing. I love that fact that it’s at Bristol. The 600th start happens to be at a milestone track for me because I won my first race there and I’ve won my most races there. It’s been a special place for me over the years. It’ll be nice to celebrate it there. I never thought I’d see 600, you don’t really think about it. It almost feels like 400 to me. I still feel like there is plenty more to do, more races to win. I haven’t won at Darlington or Indianapolis and those are ones I want to check off the list. But it’s a proud moment for myself. And a time to say thanks to my dad and all the different car owners I’ve raced for and raced with. And all the sponsors. It’s been a great ride. But it also feels like there is more left.”

What do you remember about your first career start at Dover?

“I was in way over my head (laughter). It was at Dover for my first-ever start and I think I qualified 10th. And they dropped the green flag and guys like Jeff Gordon, Bobby Labonte, Dale Jarrett, Dale (Earnhardt) Sr., just went blowing by me. And I’m flat out. And I was like, ‘What’s the rush? I thought this was 400 miles?’ I literally fell back to last place and I remember radioing in and said, ‘Am I last yet?’ and they said, ‘Yes.’ And I said, ‘Good.’ And I took a deep breath and just started passing them one at a time and I ended up 18th and two laps down in my first race.”

And who was your crew chief during that first race?

“It was Jeff Hammond, who works for FOX now. And I also had Matt Chambers, who was my Truck Series crew chief. He was coming up to take over the duties. And that was a unique situation, too, coming straight from Trucks straight into Cup. And only 12 months earlier I was running Late Models in Las Vegas.”

How tough was the challenge to go from Late Models to Trucks to Cup in that little time?

“I had the luxury of testing a lot. They don’t have the same testing rules now for rookies. The car side of it seemed OK, until about lap 200, and then I was falling out of the seat (laughter). The Cup races were just really long.”

What does it take to be successful at Bristol?

“I like how you can attack the track in certain situations. And then you have to cruise in other situations. You always have to know your surroundings at Bristol. When someone is on your rear bumper or if you are really trying to pressure somebody hard, is there a reason to be doing such? You have to be one with the track and then just digest where the other cars are around you.”

Monster Energy/Haas Automation Racing Team Report
Round 24 of 36 –  Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race – Bristol

 

Car No.: 41 – Monster Energy/Haas Automation Ford Fusion

 

PR Contact: Joe Crowley, True Speed Communication (704) 875-3388 ext. 808 or Joe.Crowley@TrueSpeedCommunication.com

Primary Team Members:
Driver: Kurt Busch
Hometown: Las Vegas
Crew Chief: Tony Gibson
Hometown: Daytona Beach, Florida
Car Chief: Chad Haney
Hometown: Fairmont, West Virginia

Engine Builder: Roush-Yates Engines
Headquarters: Mooresville, North Carolina

 

Engine Specialist: Todd Hamm
Hometown: Kutztown, Pennsylvania

 

Spotter: Tony Raines
Hometown: LaPorte, Indiana

Over-The-Wall Crew Members:
Gas Man: Rick Pigeon
Hometown: Fairfax, Vermont
Front Tire Changer: Shane Pipala
Hometown: Frankfort Square, Illinois

Second Gas Man: Matt Schlytter

Hometown: Ponte Vedra, Florida

Front Tire Carrier: Jon Bernal
Hometown: Holland, Michigan
Windshield: Jay Guarneri (also serves as interior mechanic)
Hometown: Naples, Florida
Rear Tire Changer: Coleman Dollarhide
Hometown: Hickory, North Carolina
Jackman: Sean Cotten
Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina
Rear Tire Carrier: Dwayne Moore
Hometown: Griffin, Georgia
Road Crew Members:
Truck Driver: Todd Cable and Rocky Boggs
Hometowns: Shelby, North Carolina, and Burlington, North Carolina
Tire Specialist: Jeff Zarrella
Hometown: Southington, Connecticut
Shock Specialist: Brian Holshouser
Hometown: Charlotte, North Carolina
Engineers: Johnny Klausmeier and Mike Cook
Hometowns: Perry Hall, Maryland, and Annapolis, Maryland

Mechanic: J.D. Frey
Hometown: Ferndale, California

 

Mechanic: Andy Spenner
Hometown: Hoyleton, Illinois
Chassis No. 933:
Kurt Busch will pilot Chassis No. 933 in Saturday’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway. Built new for 2015, Chassis No. 933 debuted at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway in May, when Busch finished 10th. It was next raced at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, where Busch again finished 10th. Chassis No. 933 was utilized again at Charlotte in October, when Busch recorded a fifth-place finish. Chassis No. 933 made its first start of the 2016 season at Bristol in April, when Busch scored a third-place finish. It next raced at Dover in May, where Busch finished fifth after a tough day of obstacles. It saw its last laps of the 2016 season at Bristol in August, when Busch had overtaken Joey Logano for the lead before getting loose and setting off an 11-car incident that would see Busch’s historic streak of lead-lap finishes end at 22 races. Since then, the car has received chassis updates and the body was updated for 2017. It was last used in April at Bristol, where Busch started 15th and finished 25th after an accident in the first stage. He was able to continue but was six laps down.
Michigan Notes of Interest:
 

·   The Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race will mark Busch’s 600th career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start and his 34th career NASCAR Cup Series start at Bristol.

 

·   Busch has career total totals of 29 wins, 21 poles, 127 top-fives, 253 top-10s and 8,867 laps led in 599 starts.

 

·   His most recent Cup Series win came 23 races ago in the Daytona 500 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway (Feb. 26, 2017).

 

·   His last Cup Series pole came 55 races ago at Las Vegas Motor Speedway(March 4, 2016).

 

·   Saturday’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race will mark Busch’s 34th career NASCAR Cup Series start at Bristol. Busch has five wins, nine top-five finishes and 16 top-10s at the .533-mile oval. Additionally, the 39-year-old driver has led 1,062 laps, has an average starting position of 17.4, an average finish of 15.2, and has completed 94.9 percent (15,683 of 16,527) of the laps he’s contested there.

 

·   Busch scored his first career NASCAR Cup Series win at Bristol in March 2002. He started 27th and led 89 laps en route to his first victory. It was only his third visit to the .533-mile, high-banked oval, making him the only driver to record his first win at Bristol in fewer than four attempts.

 

·   Busch’s five Bristol wins (March 2002 and 2003, August 2003, March 2004 and 2006) tie him with his younger brother Kyle Busch as the winningest active NASCAR Cup Series drivers at Bristol.

 

·   Busch completed the Bristol sweep in 2003, winning both the spring and fall NASCAR Cup Series events. He started ninth and led 116 laps in March while starting fifth and leading 121 laps in August. In March 2004, Busch went on to record his third consecutive win at Bristol when he started 13th and led 119 laps on his way to victory lane.

 

·   Busch is one of four drivers to win three or more consecutive NASCAR Cup Series races at Bristol. Fred Lorenzen won three in a row starting with the fall race in 1963, followed by a sweep of both 1964 events. Cale Yarborough won four in a row with sweeps in 1976 and 1977. Darrell Waltrip won seven in a row, including sweeps in 1981, 1982 and 1983, then a win at the March 1984 race.

 

·   Busch has led laps in 15 of his 33 career NASCAR Cup Series starts at Bristol for a combined total of 1,062 lap. Busch led 278 laps in March 2010 and finished third. He has led more than 100 laps four times, including three consecutive races – March 2003 (116), August 2003 (121) and March 2004 (119).

 

·   The Las Vegas native has one pole to his credit (August 2006) at Bristol. Busch has 21 career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series poles.

 

·   Thus Far in 2017 – Busch has accumulated one win, two top-five finishes and 10 top-10s in 23 starts.

 

·   Get to the Points – With his 11th-place finish last Sunday at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Busch enters Bristol 14th in the NASCAR Cup Series championship standings with 554 points and is 379 points behind series leader Martin Truex Jr.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

The Pressure To Make The Playoffs Is Mounting For Clint Bowyer

Clint Bowyer
Clint Bowyer said coming close to victory in several Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races in 2017 is nice, but it isn’t good enough. He’d like to change that Saturday night at Bristol Motor Speedway in the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race 500.

With three races remaining in the regular season, Bowyer is in a battle to secure one of the 16 spots in the 10-race Cup Series playoffs. He trails Matt Kenseth by 31 points, Jamie McMurray by 52 points and Chase Elliott by 62 points in the battle for the final three berths in the playoffs.

A win would secure a postseason berth, but a good points finish Saturday night would increase the Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) driver’s chances in the playoff race.

“We’ve come close to victory several times this year,” said Bowyer, who has scored the 10th-most points of any driver this season with three second-place and two third-places finishes. “That’s what can be so frustrating. You are only one or two spots away from where you want to be, but there’s a huge difference between first and everything else in this business.”

Like many drivers, Bowyer feels the Bristol night race on the .533-mile, high-banked oval with lap speeds at 130 mph is one of the highlights of the Cup Series season. Although he won an Xfinity race at Bristol in 2008, a Cup Series victory at Bristol would be near the top of his career accomplishments.

He owns seven top-five finishes and 11 top-10s in 23 Bristol races during in his 11 full Cup Series seasons. He finished second to Jimmie Johnson on April 24 in a race that saw Bowyer battle back from 21st midway through the race, then restart seventh with 48 laps remaining. He used new tires to slice through the field and drive to within 1.199 seconds of Johnson’s bumper.

If he finishes one spot better Saturday night, he promises a victory party unlike any other Bristol fans have witnessed since its first race in 1961.

“I want to celebrate in front of all those wild and crazy fans,” he said. “There’s no better atmosphere. They’re so close to you that you feel that environment.

“I’m telling you, during driver intros you’re walking down there and it’s just the feeling that comes over you before you get in that car. It’s just something you don’t feel anywhere else. It’s because of the closeness of the fans to you. They’re all breathing down on you and expecting big things out of you, and you can’t wait to go out there and get in that coliseum and go to battle.”

Bowyer’s No. 14 Ford Fusion will carry the Rush Truck Centers paint scheme during Saturday night’s race. Hopefully, he’ll restart his recent hot streak that cooled last week with a 23rd-place finish at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn. In the two races before Michigan, Bowyer finished fifth Aug. 6 at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International and sixth July 30 at Pocono (Pa.) International Raceway.

Bowyer replaced three-time champion and SHR co-owner Tony Stewart in the No. 14 car in 2017. He and the Mike Bugarewicz-led crew have enjoyed a great first season, but their view of 2017 will likely depend on how the next three races play out. Unless Bowyer wins during the next three races, it appears his playoff fate will be decided in the final laps of the last regular-season race Sept. 9 at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway.

“I’m the hunter, not the hunted,” he said. “So it’s a lot of fun to go into this weekend knowing that you’ve got to go out there and chase that guy down or chase those guys down and, hopefully, pop off a win here and just put it all to bed.”

Clint Bowyer: Driver of the No. 14 Rush Truck Centers Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:
What kind of pressure do you feel to get into the playoffs?

“There’s always pressure. It doesn’t matter. There’s pressure in the Daytona 500 to go out there and perform and try to win that race. There’s always pressure. It’s no different now. You still focus on the task at hand. You focus on unloading a fast racecar, making good downforce, making good horsepower, knowing it’s gonna take that on this racetrack. And you focus on the adjustments, the balance of your car, so you can go out and qualify well. That enables you to gain those stage points as we go through the race and then work hard to get a finish. It’s the task at hand, week-in and week-out, that you have to focus on. You can’t worry about those points. You have to go out and do your job week-in and week-out and, if you do that, I feel like, with the way we’re running, we can get in two different ways. I think we could win and I think we can point our way in. I think both of those are definite doables right now for us, I guess.”

 

Do you take chances?

“You always have to take chances. That’s the hard thing. When the pressure cooker is turned up and the situation is where it is right now, you can afford to take chances, you need to be able to take those chances to enable you to get those stage points if you’re out – make a gain to try to get them. But there’s also a Catch-22 to every decision there, so you just have to lay it all out, focus on the task at hand, whether that’s a stage win or the second stage or the finish at the end – focus on that and let the rest take care of itself.”

No. 14 Rush Truck Centers Ford Fusion Team Report

Round 24 of 36 – Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race 500 – Bristol

Car No. 14: Rush Truck Centers Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing
 
At Track PR Contact: Mike Arning with True Speed Communication (Mike.Arning@TrueSpeedCommunication.com)
Primary Team:

 

Driver: Clint Bowyer

Residence: Emporia, Kansas

 

Crew Chief: Mike Bugarewicz

Hometown: Lehighton, Pennsylvania

 

Car Chief: Jerry Cook

Hometown: Toledo, Ohio

 

Engine Specialist: Matt Moeller

Hometown: Monroe, New York

 

Engine Builder: Roush Yates Engines: Mooresville, North Carolina

 

Spotter: Brett Griffin

Hometown: Pageland, S.C.

Over-The-Wall Crew:

Front Tire Changer: Ira Jo Hussey

Hometown: Manchester, New Hampshire

 

Front Tire Carrier: Brett Morrell

Hometown: Windham, Maine

 

Rear Tire Changer: Chris McMullenHometown: Canton, Michigan

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Josh Sobecki

Hometown: New Kensington, Pennsylvania

 

Gas Man: James “Ace” Keener

Hometown: Fortuna, California

 

Jackman: Getty Cavitt

Hometown: Owensboro, Kentucky

 

Windshield: Justin Peiffer

Hometown: Lebanon, Pennsylvania

Road Crew:

 

Truck Drivers: William “Stump” Lewis and Rob Fink

Hometown: Linkwood, Maryland and Baltimore, Maryland, respectively.

 

Engineers: Lee Deese, Chris Chidgey and Kenny Oates

Hometown: Rockingham, North Carolina, Gainesville, Florida and Huntersville, North Carolina, respectively.

 

Mechanics: Tony Silvestri and Rich Letendre

Hometown: Sylvania, Ohio and Lowell, Massachusetts, respectively

 

Tire Specialist: Russell Simpson

Hometown: Medford, New York

 

Shock Specialist: Wayne Smith

Hometown: Melbourne, Australia

Notes of Interest:
  • Saturday night’s race will mark Clint Bowyer’s 421st career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start and his 24th Cup Series start at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, where he has seven top-five finishes, 11 top-10s and led 137 laps.
  • Bowyer owns career totals of eight wins, two poles, 63 top-five finishes, 177 top-10s and 2,360 laps led in 420 NASCAR Cup Series races. He also owns eight Xfinity Series victories. He is 10th in the Cup Series standings after 22 races.
    • His most recent Cup Series victory came at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway (Oct. 13, 2012).
    • His most recent Cup Series pole came at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon (Sept. 16, 2007).
  • SHR has one points-paying victory at Bristol (Kevin Harvick in August 2016) and has eight top-five finishes and 17 top-10s in 50 starts.
  • Tony Stewart and Gene Haas co-own Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), which has recorded 38 victories and 33 poles since its inception in 2009. Stewart won the 2011 NASCAR Cup Series title and Kevin Harvick gave SHR its second title in 2014. SHR’s Kurt Busch won this year’s season-opening Daytona 500, and Kevin Harvick won June 25at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway.
  • Crew chief Mike Bugarewicz is in his second season after overseeing Stewart’s final campaign in 2016. Bugarewicz’s pit strategy played a key role in Stewart’s victory at Sonoma in June 2016. The Lehighton, Pennsylvania native served as the lead engineer on SHR’s No. 4 entry in 2014 and 2015. The Penn State University graduate was the only rookie crew chief to be part of last year’s Cup Series playoffs.
  • The No. 14 Ford Fusion will carry the Rush Truck Centers paint scheme this weekend at Bristol. Rush operates the largest network of commercial vehicle dealerships in North America and is a longtime sponsor of SHR. Rush has installed telematics devices on SHR’s fleet of eight Peterbilt Model 389s and five Ford F-450 trucks. With a telematics device installed on a truck and an app on a mobile device, drivers and fleet managers can access a dashboard that displays vehicle and driver performance, electronic logs, location and overall vehicle health. In addition to telematics, SHR is supported by the RushCare Service Connect team, which monitors and can alert the team to any performance issues, fault codes or needed maintenance on any of their trucks, allowing them to transport the necessary parts and equipment from race to race. SHR hauler drivers access the telematics app on their smartphone or tablet, eliminating the need for an additional display in the truck’s cab. Since the app is on their mobile device, they can access the telematics dashboard whenever and wherever is most convenient. The app is compliant with the electronic logging device requirements expected later this year and makes it easy for drivers to generate logs, as well as vehicle and trailer inspection reports.
  • Bowyer’s Top-Five Finishes In 2017
    • 2nd-place: 
      • Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway (April 24)
      • Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway (June 25)
      • Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway (July 1)
    • 3rd-place:
      • Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. (March 26)
      • Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth (April 9)
  • Bowyer’s Stage Victories In 2017
    • Pocono (Pa.) Raceway Stage 2 (July 30, 2017)
  • Bowyer Cup Series Career Victories:
    • Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway (Oct. 13, 2012)
    • Richmond (Va.) International Raceway (Sept. 8, 2012)
    • Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway (June 24, 2012)
    • Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway (Oct. 23, 2011)
    • Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway (Oct. 31, 2010)
    • New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon (Sept. 19, 2010)
    • Richmond International Raceway (May 3, 2008)
    • New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon (Sept. 16, 2007)
  • Bowyer Cup Series Career Poles:
    • New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon (Sept. 14,2007)
    • Darlington (S.C.) Raceway (May 11, 2007)
  • Bowyer Career Cup Series Points Finishes:
    • 2016 27th
    • 2015 16th
    • 2014 19th
    • 2013 7th
    • 2012 2nd
    • 2011 13th
    • 2010 10th
    • 2009 15th
    • 2008   5th ​
    • 2007  3rd
    • 2006 17th
  • Bowyer Cup Series Career Stops:
    • 2017  Stewart-Haas Racing
    • ​2016  HScott Motorsports
    • 2012-2015  Michael Waltrip Racing
    • 2006-2011 Richard Childress Racing
  • Bowyer Xfinity Series Career Victories:
    • Dover (Del.) International Speedway (Sept. 26,2009)
    • Daytona (Fla) International Speedway (July 3, 2009)
    • Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway (March 15, 2008)
    • Richmond (Va.) International Raceway (May 4,2007)
    • Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway in Avondale (April 20, 2007)
    • Dover (Del.) International Speedway (Sept. 23, 2006)
    • Memphis (Tenn.) Motorsports Park  (Oct. 22, 2005)
    • Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway (June 12, 2005)
  • Bowyer Camping World Truck Series Victories:
    • Kansas (Kan.) Speedway in Kansas City (June 4, 2011)
    • Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway in Avondale (Nov.12, 2010)
    • Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth (Nov 3, 2006)

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Danica Honors Robert Yates At Darlington

 Stewart-Haas Racing will honor 2018 NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Robert Yates with a throwback paint scheme on the No. 10 Ford Fusion Danica Patrick will race during the Southern 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race Sept. 3 at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway.

 

After working in the sport for more than two decades, Yates launched his own team, Robert Yates Racing (RYR), in the late 1980s. In 1996, RYR expanded to a two-car operation, fielding the No. 88 Quality Care/Ford Credit Ford with Dale Jarrett. The decision by Yates to add a second car to the stable resulted in Jarrett winning the 1999 championship in a paint scheme that Patrick’s No. 10 Ford Credit Ford Fusion will emulate at Darlington.

“The throwback race at Darlington is such a cool event,” said Patrick, who has competed in five Southern 500s. “The track has done such a great job of getting the teams and drivers involved. I’m excited to run a true throwback scheme this year. It’s great that we’re able to honor Robert Yates and all he’s done for our sport.”

In addition to the championship Jarrett earned in 1999, RYR amassed an impressive 57 wins, including three in the Daytona 500.

“The No. 88 Quality Care/Ford Credit Ford was definitely a memorable program for our team,” Yates said. “We won the Daytona 500 in Dale’s very first race in that scheme in 1996 and went on to win many more races and the championship in 1999. It was incredibly gratifying to have Ford as my sponsor and manufacturer, especially when we beat the competition. Getting to see this scheme run again will bring back many great memories. I can’t thank everyone at Stewart-Haas Racing enough for honoring me and everyone that was on the team during those years.”

Ford Motor Credit Company is the financial services arm of Ford Motor Company. The brand was first seen on a NASCAR racecar in 1994 when it sponsored Elton Sawyer in what is now the NASCAR Xfinity Series. The sponsorship was very successful, so much so that in 1996 it expanded into the NASCAR Cup Series, which allowed RYR to become a two-car team.

Jarrett ran the No. 88 Quality Care/Ford Credit Ford paint scheme from 1996 through 2000, earning 20 wins, nine poles and leading more than 5,000 laps. That tally includes wins at Darlington in the 1997 and 1998 TranSouth Financial 400.

“We are very proud of our part in the heritage of NASCAR and particularly the success of RYR,” said Dale Jones, Ford Credit executive vice president of the Americas. “The Ford Credit throwback paint scheme brings back great memories of victory at the racetrack. We are thrilled that Danica will be in the driver’s seat representing that history.”

The 1.366-mile Darlington track and its Labor Day race weekend host “The Official Throwback Weekend of NASCAR” when the industry honors the sport’s history. Last year, 36 Cup Series teams competed with throwback paint schemes in the Southern 500, the most in any single NASCAR event in the sport’s history.

As the series returns to Darlington for the 68th Southern 500, the chance to honor Yates will be a special one for Billy Scott, crew chief for Patrick and the No. 10 Ford Credit Ford Fusion.

“It’s really an honor to race a paint scheme that has so much history,” Scott said. “Robert Yates Racing gave me my first job in the NASCAR Cup Series, so to take our No. 10 Ford Fusion to Darlington in tribute of Robert and all that he’s accomplished makes me extremely proud.”

The Southern 500 can be seen live on NBCSN beginning at 6 p.m. EDT and heard live on MRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio channel 90. To experience the Southern 500 and its throwback weekend in person, purchase tickets at www.DarlingtonRaceway.com or by calling 866-459-7223.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Clint Bowyer: “We Didn’t Have Much Go Right At Michigan”

Clint Bowyer & Matt Kenseth
Date: Aug. 13, 2017

Event: Pure Michigan 400 (Round 23 of 36)

Series: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series

Location: Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn (2-mile oval)

Format: 200 laps, broken into three stages (60 laps/60 laps/82 laps)

Start/Finish: 11th/23rd (Running, completed 202 of 202 laps)

Point Standing: 10th (623 points, 310 out of first)

Note: Race ended in overtime, going two laps past its scheduled 200-lap distance

 

Race Winner: Kyle Larson of Chip Ganassi Racing (Chevrolet)

Stage 1 Winner: Brad Keselowski of Team Penske (Ford)

Stage 2 Winner: Martin Truex Jr. of Furniture Row Racing (Toyota)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-60):

● Clint Bowyer qualified 11th and finished 12th.

● Climbed as high as 11th in the early going as most of the field ran single file on the high-speed track.

● Car started getting loose late in the stage after a green-flag pit stop.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 61-120):

● Started 14th and finished 13th.

● Penalized for speeding on pit road at lap 63 and dropped to the back of the field.

● Used a two-tire stop midway through the stage to regain lost track position, briefly climbing into the top-10.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 121-202):

● Started 23rd and finished 23rd.

● Penalized again for speeding before the green flag fell on the final stage and dropped to 23rd.

● Forced to pit road on lap 150 due to right-front damage after contact with another car.

● Fell to 28th and a lap behind the leaders before battling back to a 23rd-place finish.

 

Notes:

●  Bowyer remains 17th in NASCAR’s 16-driver playoffs with three races left in the regular season. He trails Matt Kenseth by 31 points for the final playoff spot.

●  There were five caution periods for a total of 28 laps.

●  Kyle Larson won the Pure Michigan 400 to score his fourth career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory, his third of the season and his third at Michigan. His margin of victory over second-place Martin Truex Jr. was .310 of a second.

●  Truex leads the championship standings with 933 points and a 129-point advantage over his nearest pursuer, Larson.

 

Clint Bowyer, driver of the No. 14 Nature’s Bakery Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“We didn’t have much go right today. We had something off on our readings, and that led to the two penalties. We were trying to be real conservative on pit road all day. There at the end everyone got slowed up in front of me, and another car turned left over the front of us. That tore our car up pretty good.”

 

Next Up:

The next event on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule is the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race on Saturday, Aug. 19 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Kurt Busch Finishes 11th In The Pure Michigan 400

Kurt Busch

Date: Aug. 13, 2017

Event: Pure Michigan 400 (Round 23 of 36)

Series: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series

Location: Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn (2-mile oval)

Format: 200 laps, broken into three stages (60 laps/60 laps/80 laps)

Note: Race ended in overtime, going two laps past its scheduled 200-lap distance

Start/Finish: 15th/11th (Running, completed 202 of 202 laps)

Point Standing: 14th (554 points, 379 out of first)

 

Race Winner: Kyle Larson of Chip Ganassi Racing (Chevrolet)

Stage 1 Winner: Brad Keselowski of Team Penske (Ford)

Stage 2 Winner: Martin Truex Jr. of Furniture Row Racing (Toyota)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-60):

● Kurt Busch started 15th, finished 15th.

● Busch jolted his Monster Energy/Haas Automation Ford Fusion to the 12th position before noting grip issues on lap three.

● On lap 42, he pitted for four fresh tires and fuel.

● When the green-flag pit stops cycled through, Busch was left in the 13th position.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 61-120):

● Started 15th, finished 15th.

● At the beginning of Stage 2, Busch continued to battle front and rear grip issues.

● On lap 107, crew chief Tony Gibson called Busch to the pits for four tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments to correct loose-handling conditions.

● At the conclusion of Stage 2, Busch pitted for four more tires and fuel.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 121-200):

● Started 18th, finished 11th.

● After a lap-139 caution, Busch restarted in the 10th position.

● Busch ran as high as third place in the final stage.

● On lap 173 Busch pitted for two tires, fuel and wedge adjustments under green-flag conditions.

● Following a lap-196 red-flag caution, Busch restarted from the 17th position and battled his Monster Energy/Haas Automation Ford Fusion just outside the top-10.

 

Notes:

● This was Busch’s 34th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start at Michigan and his 599th career NASCAR Cup Series start.

● There were five caution periods for a total of 28 laps.

● Twenty-four of the 39 drivers in the Pure Michigan 400 finished on the lead lap.

● Kyle Larson won the Pure Michigan 400 to score his fourth career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory, his third of the season and his third at Michigan. His margin of victory over second-place Martin Truex Jr. was .310 of a second.

● Truex leads the championship standings with 933 points and a 129-point advantage over his nearest pursuer, Larson.

 

Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 Monster Energy/Haas Automation Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“We were solid today, but we didn’t do anything right, and we didn’t do anything wrong. We’ll pull together and work hard for next week in Bristol.”

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Danica Pulls Off A 22nd Place Finish At Michigan

Danica Patrick
Date: Aug. 13, 2017

Event: Pure Michigan 400 (Round 23 of 36)

Series: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series

Location: Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn (2-mile oval)

Format: 200 laps, broken into three segments (60 laps/60 laps/80 laps)

Note: Race ended in overtime, going two laps past its scheduled 200-lap distance

Start/Finish: 18th/22nd (Running, completed 202 of 202 laps)

Point Standings: 28th (340 points, 593 out of first)

 

Race Winner: Kyle Larson of Chip Ganassi Racing (Chevrolet)

Stage 1 Winner: Brad Keselowski of Team Penske (Ford)

Stage 2 Winner: Martin Truex Jr. of Furniture Row Racing (Toyota)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-60):

● Danica Patrick started 18th and finished 25th.

● The No. 10 Code 3 Associates Ford Fusion team lost ground on the initial start and dropped back to 25th. Patrick was able to get back up to 23rd before green-flag stops started at lap 38.

● Patrick said the car felt like it was out of the track. The team elected to take right-side tires and fuel when the they pitted at lap 43.

● Patrick went a lap down to the leader at lap 59 but was awarded the free pass when the caution flag waved at the end of the stage, which put her back on the lead lap heading into Stage 2.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 61-120):

● Started 23rd and finished 20th.

● Crew chief Billy Scott called for a two-tire stop at lap 106, and Patrick raced her way up to the 20th position before the end of the stage.

● The No. 10 Code 3 Associates Ford pitted for four tires, fuel and a wedge adjustment between stages.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 121-200):

● Started 20th and finished 22nd.

● Patrick was scored in the 23rd position when the caution flag waved at lap 139. A piece of debris from an accident hit the No. 10 Code 3 Associates Ford, so Scott called Patrick to pit road twice under caution for tires, fuel and repairs to the racecar.

● On lap 165 the team pitted under green for a fuel-only stop. When the caution flag waved at lap 186 for debris, Patrick was scored 20th, one lap down, as some teams had yet to pit. The No. 10 team took the wave-around to get back on the lead lap.

● When the caution flag waved at lap 196, Scott called Patrick down pit road for tires and fuel. She lined up 21st for the final restart and took the checkered flag in the 22nd position.

 

Notes:              

● This was Patrick’s 10th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start at Michigan and her 177th career NASCAR Cup Series start.

● Patrick earned 15 points in Sunday’s race, which puts her at 340 points so far this season. She is ranked 28th in the driver point standings.

● There were five caution periods for a total of 28 laps.

● Twenty-four of the 39 drivers in the Pure Michigan 400 finished on the lead lap.

Kyle Larson won the Pure Michigan 400 to score his fourth career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory, his third of the season and his third at Michigan International Speedway. His margin of victory over second-place Martin Truex Jr. was .310 of a second.

● Truex leads the championship standings with 933 points and has a 129-point margin over his nearest pursuer, Larson.

 

Danica Patrick, driver of the No. 10 Code 3 Associates Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“We just weren’t as good as we needed to be today. Then the No. 10 Code 3 Associates Ford was just too loose there at the end, and we weren’t able to make up any ground on that last restart.”

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Mechanical Woes Ruins Custer’s Day At Mid-Ohio

Cole Custer

Date: Aug. 12, 2017

Event: Mid-Ohio Challenge (Round 21 of 33)

Series: NASCAR XFINITY Series

Location: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington (2.4-mile road course)

Format: 75 laps, broken into three stages (20 laps/20 laps/35 laps)

Start/Finish: 9th/35th (Running, completed 54 of 75 laps)

Point Standing: 6th (505 points, 258 out of first)

 

Race Winner: Sam Hornish Jr. of Team Penske (Ford)

Stage 1 Winner: Blake Koch of Kaulig Racing (Chevy)

Stage 2 Winner: Sam Hornish Jr. of Team Penske (Ford)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-20):

● Started ninth, finished 40th.

● Due to Custer making contact with the grass in qualifying, he started the Mid-Ohio Challenge with his backup Haas Automation Ford Mustang.

● On lap two, a mechanical failure forced Custer to the pits.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 21-40):

● Started 40th, finished 37th.

● After repairs, Custer entered the field 22 laps down at the start of Stage 2.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 41-75):

● Started 37th, finished 35th.

● Custer gained one lap during the final stage.

● Due to multiple accidents, Custer gained two spots before the conclusion of the race.

 

Notes:              

 Nine cautions slowed the race for 27 laps.

● Sam Hornish Jr. won the Mid-Ohio Challenge to score his fifth career XFINITY Series victory, his first of the season and his first at Mid-Ohio.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Clint Bowyer Is Feeling The Playoff Pressure

Clint Bowyer
Clint Bowyer enters Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway 17th in points, 28 behind Matt Kenseth for the final playoff spot in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series points race. To qualify for the postseason, he must either pass Kenseth and hope nobody below him wins, or win himself.

With four races left until the postseason starts, intensity is amped-up at Michigan International Speedway, the 2-mile oval an hour-plus from the birthplace of America’s automotive industry.

“There’s always pressure,” Bowyer said. “There’s pressure in the Daytona 500 to go out there and perform and try to win that race. It’s no different now. You still focus on the task at hand. You focus on unloading a fast racecar, making good downforce, making good horsepower.”

But a fast car that handles well might not be enough. Bowyer and his No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford team will likely take big chances to try to steal a win. “I’m the hunter not the hunted, so it’s a lot of fun to go into this weekend knowing that you’ve got to go out there and chase that guy down, or chase those guys down and hopefully pop off a win here.”

In Bowyer’s 23 series starts at Michigan, he has posted 11 top-10 finishes.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Cole Custer Makes His First Start At Mid-Ohio

Cole Custer

NASCAR XFINITY Series Overview
 

Event: Mid-Ohio Challenge (Round 21 of 33)

Date: Aug. 12, 2017

Location: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington

Layout: 2.4-mile road course

 

Cole Custer Notes of Interest
 

●  The Mid-Ohio Challenge will mark Custer’s 26th career NASCAR XFINITY Series start and his first XFINITY Series start at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington.

 

●  Custer’s best finish in the 20 XFINITY Series races run this season is fourth, earned June 3 at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. It was his 11th top-10 and fifth top-five and it equaled his career-best finish.

 

●  Custer’s best qualifying effort in the 20 XFINITY Series races run this season is third, earned twice – April 22 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway and June 10 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway. Custer has 13 top-10 starts and four top-five starts this season.

 

●  Last week, Custer ran his career-first XFINITY Series road-course race at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International. He ran as high as second, turning consistent top-five lap speeds.

 

●  Custer has earned four top-five finishes, nine top-10s and has led 29 laps so far in the 2017 XFINITY Series season.

 

●  Custer is second in the XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year standings, 59 points behind leader William Byron.

 

●  Custer has earned six Rookie of the Race awards this season. Rookie of the Race awards aregiven to the highest-finishing XFINITY Series rookie at each race.

 

●  Custer is sixth in the XFINITY Series driver standings, 229 points behind series leader Elliott Sadler.

 

●  This will be Stewart-Haas Racing’s second XFINITY Series road-course race.

 

Cole Custer, Driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang
 

What was it like testing at Mid-Ohio?

“I think the test went fairly well. It’s hard to tell because it’s a different kind of car and everything, but I thought it was a fun place to run around. I can’t wait to hit the track with my Haas Automation Ford Mustang this weekend.”

Run us through a lap at Mid-Ohio.

“Mid-Ohio seems to definitely be one of the more technical places we go to, especially through the back section, so it will be fun to figure that out.”

Based on your performance at Watkins Glen, what are your expectations going into your second straight road-course race?

“I felt like we had pretty solid speed at Watkins Glen and we were one of the faster XFINITY guys. Hopefully, we can keep it in the top-five and be there at the end to get our first XFINITY win of the season.”

Jeff Meendering, Crew Chief of the No. 00 Haas Automation Team
 

What is your strategy going into your second straight road-course race?

 

“We didn’t get the finish we were hoping for in Watkins Glen, but I am very happy with the speed we showed in the race. Our team is going into Mid-Ohio with the confidence that we can compete for the win.”

No. 00 Haas Automation Team Roster
Primary Team Members:

 

Driver: Cole Custer

Hometown: Ladera Ranch, California

 

Crew Chief: Jeff Meendering

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Car Chief: Eddie D’Hondt Jr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

 

Lead Engineer: Bruce Schlickler

Hometown: Clarksburg, West Virginia

 

Engine Specialist: Craig Herrmann

Hometown: Albany, New York

 

Spotter: Eddie D’Hondt Sr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

Over-The-Wall Crew:

Front Tire Changer: Ryan Mulder

Hometown: Sioux City, Iowa

 

Front Tire Carrier: Tyler Bullard

Hometown: King, North Carolina

 

Rear Tire Changer: Chris JacksonHometown: Fort Mill, South Carolina

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Jeremy Howard

Hometown: Dalhant, Texas

 

Gas Man: Andrew Migliozzi

Hometown: West Borough, Massachusetts

 

Jackman: Sean Cotten

Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina

Road Crew Members:

 

Truck Driver: Jason Gray

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Mechanic: Daren VanderLey

Hometown: Mobile, Alabama

 

Mechanic: Michael Brill

Hometown: Woodsville, New Hampshire

 

Tire Specialist: Bryan Honeycutt

Hometown: Asheboro, North Carolina

 

Shock Specialist: Dave Hansen

Hometown: York, Maine

 

Pit Support: Chris Justice

Hometown: Greensboro, South Carolina

Haas Automation Notes of Interest
 

The No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang will feature decals on the lower-rear quarter panel for:

 

●  Clark State Community College – With campus locations in Springfield, Beavercreek and Bellefontaine, as well as an extensive offering of online classes, Clark State is just a short drive or a click away. Its students and corporate customers have chosen Clark State because of its reputation for quality and customer service. It offers a wide variety of academic and technical courses; with one of the unique offerings being its Manufacturing Engineering Technology program. This program prepares students for a variety of positions within a manufacturing enterprise. The program builds on the student’s knowledge of computer-aided design, electronics, and manufacturing processes, providing additional skills in areas such as statistical process control, automation, and computer numerical control.

 

●  Stark State College – Located at 6200 Frank Avenue NW North in Canton, Ohio, Stark State College provides quality, high-value associate degrees, certificates, and professional development in diverse, student-centered learning environments. The College is dedicated to lifelong learning; affordable, transferable higher education; and career success. Stark State College advances qualityof life through access, academic success, stewardship, and business and community partnerships.

 

●  Haas Factory Outlet Cleveland, a division of Midwest Mfg. Resources – Located at 1993 Case Parkway North in Twinsburg, Ohio, Haas Factory Outlet Cleveland is the exclusive dealer for Haas Automation CNC machine tools in Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky, and Northeast & Southern Indiana. All Haas machines come with the most user-friendly CNC control in the industry, and the Haas Platinum One-Call policy provides expert service and dependable, immediate response. Midwest Manufacturing Resources also supports manufacturing education through the Haas Technical Education Centers at Sinclair Community College, Vincennes University and the University of Louisville, among others.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!