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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-21-2011, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
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NASCAR 6/25-6/26 (Sat & Sun)

Race Capsule

What: Race 16 of 34 on Nationwide circuit
Where: Road America, Elkhart Lake, WI
When: June 25, 2011 ESPN 5:46 pm EDT
Laps: 50
Track Length: 4.048 miles
Race Length: 202.00 miles


Road America


Records
Date Series Driver Speed
6/19/10 Nationwide Race Carl Edwards 69.00
6/19/10 Nationwide Qualifying Carl Edwards 108.076
5/15/05 Camping World Truck Race Bobby Hamilton 66.00
5/15/05 Camping World Truck Qualifying Ron Hornaday Jr. 110.585


Nationwide Series
Upcoming Race Jun 25
Bucyrus 200

Track Facts

Location: Elkhart Lake, WI
Banking/Turns: 14-turn
Distance: 4.05 miles
Shape: 14-turn

Nationwide
Date Race Name Pole Winner Race Winner Make Purse
6/19/10 Bucyrus 200 Carl Edwards Carl Edwards Ford $1,110,987

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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-21-2011, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
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Toyota/Save Mart 350




Infineon Raceway



Race Capsule
What: Race 16 of 36 on Sprint Cup circuit
Where: Infineon Raceway, Sonoma, CA
When: June 26, 2011 TNT 3:19 pm EDT
Laps: 110
Track Length: 1.99 miles
Race Length: 219.00 miles


Records
Date Series Driver Speed
6/7/92 Sprint Cup Race Ernie Irvan 81.00
6/25/00 Sprint Cup Qualifying Rusty Wallace 99.309

Sprint Cup Series
Upcoming Race Jun 26
Toyota/Save Mart 350

Track Facts
Infineon Raceway


Location: Sonoma, CA
Banking/Turns: 10-turn
Distance: 1.99 miles
Shape: 10-turn

Most Cup Wins (since 1975)

Jeff Gordon: 5


Sprint Cup
Date Race Name Pole Winner Race Winner Make Purse
6/20/10 Toyota/Save Mart 350 Kasey Kahne Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet $5,520,395
6/21/09 Toyota/Save Mart 350 Brian Vickers Kasey Kahne Dodge $5,635,918
6/22/08 Toyota/Save Mart 350 Kasey Kahne Kyle Busch Toyota $5,588,135
6/24/07 Toyota/Save Mart 350 Jamie McMurray Juan Pablo Montoya Dodge $5,477,835

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - NSCS Race Advance - Infineon Raceway
June 21, 2011 , SONOMA, Calif. - For Immediate Release
Dodge Motorsports Notes Quotes
NSCS Race Advance
Sav Mart 350
Infineon Raceway
Sunday, June 26, 2011


DODGE NEWS AND NOTES

· Kurt Busch is the only Sprint Cup Series driver who has been in the top-10 in the driver point standings all season.

· A Dodge has started from the pole in four consecutive Sprint Cup races - Brad Keselowski (Charlotte) and Kurt Busch (Kansas, Pocono and Michigan).

· Robby Gordon leads all current Dodge drivers in laps led at Infineon with 158 (fifth most of all active Cup drivers).


DODGE AT INFINEON RACEWAY

· Dodge Motorsports has two wins at Infineon Raceway (Juan Pablo Montoya (2007) and Kasey Kahne (2009).

· Dodge’s Kurt Busch started from the pole at Infineon Raceway in 2006. He led 29 of 110 laps en route to a fifth-place finish.

· Dodge has earned two poles at Infineon Raceway (Busch – 2006 and Kahne – 2008).

· Dodge’s Robby Gordon has a win, three top-fives and four top-10s at the 1.99-mile road course.

THE DODGE BOYS


· Dodge has 208 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories.

· Dodge’s most recent win came at Kansas Speedway. Brad Keselowski led nine of 267 laps en route to his victory in the STP 400. The victory was the first for Dodge in 2011.

· Dodge teams have posted 48 victories since the manufacturer’s return to NASCAR’s premier series in 2001 after being out of the sport since 1977.

· Dodge has posted wins each season since its return in 2001 including seven wins twice (2002 and 2006).

· Dodge’s Kurt Busch earned victories at the season opening Bud Shootout and Gatorade Duel at Daytona Int’l Speedway.

· Dodge claimed two Sprint Cup victories in 2010.

DID YOU KNOW

· Drivers completing all 110 laps on the 1.99-mile road course will have made 1,100 turns when the checkered flag falls at Infineon Raceway.

· Dodge has won two of the last four Sprint Cup races at Infineon.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

· Last year’s Sprint Cup race at Infineon produced an event record 12 lead changes.

· Eight of the 22 races at Infineon have been won from the front row. Only two have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.

· Kurt Busch is one of seven active Cup drivers to have led more than 50 laps at Infineon.

· The track was changed to its current 1.99-mile configuration in 2002.

FROM THE ENGINEER
"As we travel to the first road course race of the year, teams have to instantly change gears to, well, thinking about changing gears for one thing. A road course means lots of slow parts of the track as well as lots of fast parts. More than a dozen transmission gear changes every lap is the norm. That will put a tremendous amount of strain on all the driveline parts, not just the transmission. Teams have to be ever mindful of the durability of these key components. The right driveline parts will help provide speed, but the failure of any one of them will bring a quick end to your day."
Howard Comstock, Dodge Motorsports Engineering

2011 SPRINT CUP SERIES SEASON BEST

· Kurt Busch Start: Pole – Kansas, Pocono, Michigan
Finish: 2nd – Pocono

· Brad Keselowski Start: Pole – Charlotte
Finish: Win – Kansas

· Robby Gordon Start: 30th – Daytona
Finish: 16th – Daytona

INFINEON RACEWAY BEST

· Kurt Busch Start: Pole – 2006
Finish: Third – 2005

· Brad Keselowski Start: 36th – 2010
Finish: 35th – 2010

· Robby Gordon Start: 2nd – 2003, 2007
Finish; Win – 2003

ODDS AND ENDS

· Dodge’s Kurt Busch posted three consecutive top 10s in his No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger (Charlotte 4th, Kansas 9th and Pocono 2nd) before finishing 11th at Michigan. The second at Pocono is a season best.

· Brad Keselowski is one of three drivers outside the top-12 in the driver point standings with a win this season.

· The last driver to win three consecutive poles was former Penske Racing driver Ryan Newman (2007).

· There were seven cautions for 14 laps in last year’s race at Infineon. The record is nine (1990).

ON BEING SUCCESSFUL AT INFINEON:
“Patience is certainly a huge part of it, but I think it goes back to what I said. You need to come there fully prepared and be competitive from the time you unload. Qualifying up front is really important; not only because you want to start in front of the other competitors, but it also allows you to get the premium pitting positions on pit road for the race.”
Kurt Busch, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T

DODGE MOTORSPORTS QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“The two road course races (Infineon and Watkins Glen) could really shake the standings up and determine who makes the Chase. They’re two critical races. Marcos Ambrose and Juan Pablo Montoya are in front of me in points and both could easily win on those road courses, along with AJ Allmendinger. That would complete ruin any shot that I would have unless I win another race. I think, in reality, we just need to focus on our own path and what we can do and it will take care of itself. For us, we just need to run solid races."
Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T

DODGE QUOTES
“I really do feel like we’re closing in on getting that first Cup road course win. They don’t give you anything out there; you have to scratch and claw and earn everything you get. I’ve seen our team continue to make progress and if we continue to get ourselves in the position to win, we’re bound to capitalize on it sooner or later. Hopefully, we can continue that progress at Sonoma (Infineon) on Sunday and finally win us one of these things.”
Kurt Busch, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T

“Really excited to come back home to Sonoma where we’ve had a lot of success. Last year was a great race for our team finishing second. We look forward towards capitalizing on that great run. If everything goes well, from qualifying to pit stops, and even some strategy involved, you could find the SPEED Energy Dodge Charger R/T towards the front. We have GNC as a partner this weekend. They are a great retailer for SPEED Energy ans we hope to put them in victory lane.”
Robby Gordon, No. 7 SPEED Energy Dodge Charger R/T

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - NNS Race Advance - Road America
June 21, 2011 , ELKHART LAKE, Wisc. - Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes
NNS Race Advance

BUCYRUS 200 presented by Menards
Road America
Saturday, June 25, 2011


JACQUES VILLENEUVE – No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T

Career Starts: 5

Wins: 0

Top Fives: 2

Top 10s: 3

Poles: 0

Career Highlights:


VILLENEUVE AT ROAD AMERICA

· One of five drivers to lead a lap in last year’s race at the 4.048-mile track

· Highest starting position: Second – 2010

· Highest finishing position: 25th – 2010

· Average starting position: 2.0

· Average finishing position: 25.0

VILLENEUVE ON ROAD COURSE

· All five Nationwide starts have been on a road course: (Montreal (3) and one each at Road America and Watkins Glen

· Best Finish: 3rd – Montreal (2010)

· Has two consecutive top-five finishes at Montreal

· Best Start: 2nd – Montreal (2010), Road America (2010)

· Laps Led: 8

· Led laps in all three starts at Montreal

· Average Start: 4.2

· Average Finish 11:2

VILLENEUVE CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

· 1989 – began racing in Italian Formula Three

· 1993 – moved to Formula Atlantic in the United States

· 1995 – Indy 500 winner

· 1995 – IndyCar Series champion

· 1996 – joined F1’s Williams Renault

· 1997 – won Formula One Driver’s title

· 2007 – first NASCAR Sprint Cup start (two starts)

· 2008 – first Nationwide Series start (one start)


DODGE IN THE NASCAR NATIONWIDE SERIES
· Dodge won its first Nationwide Series championship last year when Penske Racing’s Brad Keselowski claimed the driver’s title.

· Dodge has 34 wins in the Nationwide Series, seven of which came in 2010.

DID YOU KNOW
· Jacques Villeneuve will be making his first Nationwide Series start in a Dodge and with Penske Racing when he takes the controls of the No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger at the 14-turn, 4.048-mile road course at Road America. It will be his sixth Nationwide Series start, all on road courses. He will also drive the No. 22 Dodge at Montreal.

· Penske Racing and Dodge are fielding two entries in many Nationwide Series races this season. Sam Hornish Jr. has made six starts in the No. 12 Dodge Challenger from the Penske stable. Indy 500 pole winner Alex Tagliani will take over the reins of the No. 12 at Montreal.

STAT OF THE WEEK
· The No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger has six top-five and 10 top-10 finishes in 15 races this season.

THE NUMBERS
· Dodge finished fourth (Brad Keselowski) and 35th (Justin Allgaier) in the inaugural Nationwide Series race at Road America last season.

FROM THE CREW CHIEF:
“Road America is the longest track on our schedule with long straights and big breaking zones that give one of the best road racers, Jacque Villeneuve, lots of opportunities to get the Discount Tire Dodge out front. We have tested with Jacques a couple of times and had good speeds as a result of the testing. We feel we have a good package to unload with and build from for this circuit. The challenges of having to turn both ways and stop well are something this whole No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge team looks forward to.”
Todd Gordon, crew chief, No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T

DODGE QUOTES:
“Road America is one of my favorite tracks and I'm super excited to be returning there this weekend to race in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. I was fighting for the win in last year’s race so I have some unfinished business at this event, for sure. This will be my first event both in the No. 22 Discount Tire/Ruby Tuesday Dodge Challenger, and with Penske Racing, so I'm really looking forward to getting in the car and seeing what we can achieve together.”
Jacques Villeneuve – No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge R/T

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Busch Seeks First Cup Road Course At Infineon



SONOMA, June 21, 2011: Shell-Pennzoil Dodge driver Kurt Busch enters this weekend’s Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway still in quest of his first career NASCAR Sprint Cup road course victory after 20 starts in road course competition to date. Busch says that he feels his Steve Addington-led Penske Racing “Double-Deuce” team is closing in on that elusive victory.

“We’ve definitely had some chances of winning on the road courses in the Cup cars through the years,” said Busch, who is currently tied for sixth in points and is going after his fourth consecutive Coors Light Pole Award this weekend at Sonoma. “We started third and had a strong top-five run going at Sonoma (Infineon) last year before the late-race run-in. We came back and really threatened for the win last August at Watkins Glen. To race with (Juan Pablo) Montoya and (Marcos) Ambrose like we did there was definitely a confidence-builder. Those two guys come from a different world when it comes to road course racing. We got by Ambrose at the end and were closing in on Montoya.

“I really do feel like we’re closing in on getting that first Cup road course win,” said Busch. “They don’t give you anything out there; you have to scratch and claw and earn everything you get. I’ve seen our team continue to make progress and if we continue to get ourselves in the position to win, we’re bound to capitalize on it sooner or later. Hopefully, we can continue that progress at Sonoma (Infineon) on Sunday and finally win us one of these things.”

In Busch’s 20 career road course starts to date, he has four top-five finishes and seven top-10s. He has led laps in seven races and has led a total of 11 times for 123 laps. He has an average start of 10.1 and average finish of 19.0 in those 20 races. He has been running at the finish in 18 of the races and finished on the lead lap 16 times. In his 10 races at Infineon Raceway, Busch has three top-five finishes and three top-10s. He has a 10.5 average start and a 20.0 average finish.

Busch recently participated in a special “Q & A session” regarding this weekend’s Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway. Here is the transcript:

Q: In the past three years at Infineon, there have been three veteran drivers who won their first career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series road race – Kyle Busch, Kasey Kahne and Jimmie Johnson. Are more drivers preparing harder now than in the past to compete on road courses?

A: “It has gotten to be that there is so much focus on the road course races, that’s for sure. In the decade that I’ve been in the sport, I have witnessed most teams attack the road course races with a full-court press attitude. The teams have special cars for those races, drivers go to the road course driving schools and some of the smaller teams hire road course ‘ringers’ to come in and run those races only. I haven’t won a Cup race on the road courses yet and it’s certainly a goal to add our name to the list of winners. Our Shell-Pennzoil Dodge Team will test at Road Atlanta and at VIR (Virginia International Raceway) in our preparation this season. At the end of the day, the road course races pay the same amount of points and teams are preparing all they possibly can for those races.”

Q: Jeff Gordon won at Infineon five times between 1998 and 2006. The past six years there have been six different winners. How much more competitive and unpredictable has the race become?

A: “Man, I am liking this even more and more hearing stats like that. It sounds like it’s building up to maybe finally being our time to win one of these races. Six different winners? I know that strategy and pit work have really risen to the top in importance. Overall, what I’ve see most of the time is a situation where the strongest teams for a particular road course weekend come in and unload fast. They qualify up front, get the good work in the pits they need and are there battling for the win at the end. We hope to be that team this time around.”

Q: With so many turns and so few easy places to pass at Infineon, the race typically has lots of bumping and contact, similar to a short-track race only with twists. Do you just prepare yourself for that kind of race, along with the probability of some angry drivers?

A: “I’d say that’s a pretty fair assessment. There is a lot of beating and banging. I got crashed by Jimmie Johnson two years ago out there and Jeff Gordon got us last year. As the laps wind down, everybody is scratching and scraping for every spot you can get. This time around, there’s probably no other track where the new points system will weigh on your mind like it will there. When it gets down to those last few laps, you can really look at it as picking up a point for each and every car you can get by and put into your rear-view mirror.”

Q: What do you like most about road-course racing in general and specifically at Infineon? It appears to demand a lot from drivers, physically and mentally.

A: “I get those questions quite often and my immediate response is to joke that I like the opportunity to go somewhere and make some right-hand turns in addition to all the lefts. It usually draws a chuckle, but it really is the truth. As many oval tracks as we race on, it really is a nice change of pace to race on a road course. It is a great challenge that I enjoy – all the shifting gears and braking you have to do. There’s quite a bit of mental demand in keeping cool and focused and trying to anticipate what the guys around you are going to do. With the right and left turns, you do get an upper body workout, too.”

Q: What are the keys to winning at Infineon? How important is patience?

A: “Patience is certainly a huge part of it, but I think it goes back to what I said. You need to come there fully prepared and be competitive from the time you unload. Qualifying up front is really important; not only because you want to start in front of the other competitors, but it also allows you to get the premium pitting positions on pit road for the race. My theory has always been stay focused and stay on the track while you move forward. Get a good rhythm going. Set them up to make your move underneath entering Turn 11 because that is the major passing point on the track. Be smooth over the distance and try to keep on the asphalt with all the fenders on your car.”



Rick

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - Kurt Busch Open Interview - Infineon
June 24, 2011 , SONOMA, Calif. - Friday, June 24, 2011

Dodge Motorsports PR
Infineon Raceway
Save/Mart 350
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series





KURT BUSCH (No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T)

HOW WOULD YOU RATE THE STRENGTH OF YOUR TEAM RIGHT NOW? “I would give us a B-plus. We’ve run really well, consistent. We just haven’t had those break-through performances with a win. Every area of the team is graded. Whether it’s aerodynamics, motor department, chassis design, pit crew. I’d say that we’re an “A” and a “B” in every category, but we end up with a B-plus overall. There are teams out there that are A-pluses in certain areas and As in others. I know that we can be better. Right now, we have a great shot at making the Chase. We just have to continue to grow as a team and make sure that when we hit the Chase, we’ve got an A-plus grade because you can’t throw away points in the Chase. You have to make sure that you capitalize on every moment. Like last week, we led some laps. I thought that we were a fourth-place car. We drove home 11th. Those seven points in the Chase kill you. Seven points right now aren’t so bad.”

CAN YOU ARTICULATE THE DIFFERENCES IN THIS TRACK?
“Most oval races, you get into that groove of (turns) 1, 2, 3, 4 and you’re working on a general chassis setup that just goes left. Here at a road course, there’s 11 turns that we count. It’s about shifting gears. It’s about going up and down the hills, turning left, turning right. There’s more of a percentage of turning right here than left, so our primary focus is turning right. Just trying to get the car to balance itself on the short run as well as the long run because you’re paid really well when you run well on the long run.”

WHAT MAKES THIS A GREAT RACE ON SUNDAY? “The fact that you get to see cars turning right and left; the whole gist of road racing with stock cars. It’s not the Grand Am series or GT class of cars where they’re spread out. You’ll see guys beating and banging on each other on a road course. You don’t see that all that often.”

WHEN YOU HAVE A BAD RUN AT A TRACK, DOES IT STICK WITH YOU FOR A WHILE? “It just pumps you up even more to know that you were that close and you just need to do one or two things different to seal the deal. Marcos Ambrose will be tough this weekend. We raced hard against him at Watkins Glen last fall and ended up coming out on top. (Juan) Montoya won, we were second and Ambrose was third. We know that we have to race those guys if we want to win the race on Sunday.”

WHAT DO YOU REMEMBER ABOU THE WAY THAT JEFF GORDON RACED HERE LAST YEAR? “It was an off-day for Jeff. He apologized to a handful of guys afterwards and for some reason (he) pinpointed me. I thought that was interesting. He drove straight through our right rear and we finished 32nd. You have your bad days. You have your moments of beating and banging. It’s one of those things where the lines keep getting further and further towards the aggressive side here at Sonoma. You don’t see it so much at Watkins Glen; you don’t see it as much here. Everybody seems to get more and more aggressive late in races.”

WHY ARE WE SEEING MORE AGGRESSIVE RACING HERE? “I’m not sure. We have our cars here that put up a big fight and don’t take the damage as rough as they use to. You can really lean into somebody pretty hard and still maintain your track position.”

CAN YOU DESCRIBE THE DRIVING ABILITY OF YOU YOUR BROTHER? “Kyle does a great job everywhere he goes. Whether it’s the Truck, Nationwide, Cup series, he’s found that success, in the Truck series as a driver and owner. It’s great to watch him put it all together. He’s competitive every week. Whether it’s mile-and-a-half, short track or superspeedway, he can driver at all the race tracks. I like to joke around and say that I taught him too much, he’s absorbed it all and done very well with it.”

WHAT DOES KYLE DO WELL? “Just raw speed. He gets that car as fast as it can be and finding that lap time out on the track.”

IF THERE WAS ONE CORNER THAT YOU COULD TAKE ONE-TENTH OF A SECOND OFF, WHERE WOULD THAT BE? “For racing, I would like Turn 10. That’s the fast right-hander behind the drag tower. If you can get through there quick, that puts you in position for getting into Turn 11.”

WHAT WILL IT TAKE TO WIN ON SUNDAY? “It’s a tough battle. You can’t expect to win. You have to go there and give it your best all through practice. Stick with the race strategy and knowing when to pit. When you’re out there racing, there are certain guys you know to race early in the run. Then there are guys late in the run that you know to race. To win here, it’s a culmination of putting together so many elements because we only do road racing twice a year. You have to be able to adapt. Most importantly, the car has to run its lap times lap after lap after lap. Not missing a gear and staying on track and executing the basics are what it takes to win here.”

WHERE DO YOU LOOK TO PASS ON THIS TRACK? “Looking to pass here is tough. There are opportunities to take advantage of other drivers when they make mistakes. I’d say Turn 7 and 11 are your primary choices. They’re two hard braking zones. A big deceleration rate and you can out brake people in these corners. You have to look to pass anywhere when somebody makes a mistake and take advantage of that.”

HOW IMPORTANT IS QUALIFYING HERE? “I think it’s very important. When you start up front and you’re right in that lead group, you’re out of the trouble, out of those double-file restarts where it seems like cheap shots happen. You’re out there just trying to hang on. If you’re up front and can separate yourself from the rest of the group, then life is easier.”

Rick

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - Jacques Villeneuve Open Interview - Road America
June 24, 2011 , ELKHART LAKE, Wisc. - Friday, June 24, 2011



ROAD AMERICA
Dodge Motorsports PR
NASCAR Nationwide Series
BUCYRUS 200 presented by Menards
Jacques Villeneuve Open Interview



JACQUES VILLENEUVE (No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T)
“It’s always fun to come back to Road America. Every time I’ve been here, it’s been fun driving, racing. It’s a track that allows you to be a little bit aggressive on the brakes in a racing situation. It’s a long lap, a lot can happen. You feel like you’re going somewhere when you’re driving around. The corners are actually difficult. There are a bunch of different speeds and length of corners. If you look at last year, I think there was a lot of action in the race. So, that was a lot of fun.

“A cable came loose (last year) one lap from the end. That was a little bit frustrating. Until then, we were running second and hopefully we could fight Carl (Edwards, last year’s race winner) on the last lap. That’s part of racing. When you’ve been in it for a few years, you realize there are good days and bad days and sometimes there’s nothing we can do about it.

“Now, coming back this year, it’s more exciting because I’m coming in with the Penske team. I’ve always had a huge amount of respect for the whole organization since my IndyCar days, for Roger and all his crew. To now be a part of the family, even if it’s for one race weekend, is very special. I’m stepping in some good shoes; Brad (Keselowski) normally drives that car and does an amazing job, so that’s good and it’s with his sponsors as well. I’ve very happy about that.

“Also, we’re coming with a new car, a brand new car. So, there are no setups from the past. You start with a blank sheet of paper and hopefully, having a lot of road-course experience should help in setting the car up quickly.”

HOW DID THIS DEAL WITH PENSKE COME TOGETHER; DO YOU THINK YOU’RE RUN HERE LAST YEAR HELPED? “I’m sure running good last year helps. Anytime you run well, it opens the door a little bit. I’ve been working on NASCAR for quite a few years now. It’s slow progress, but it’s always a little progress. You never give up and keep going. Also, I think there’s been some good respect toward one another since the IndyCar days. I raced against Roger’s (Penske) organization in ‘94 and ’95 in IndyCar. All these things helped. And yes, fighting for the win last year and being aggressive, but I think what has helped me is the fact Brad is not racing here.”

YOUR ROAD COURSE EXPERIENCE VERSUS THE BENEFIT OF A DRIVER BEING IN THE SAME CAR WITH THE SAME TEAM 34 TIMES A YEAR; DOES IT ALL EVEN OUT? “It probably does. It’s important to know the people you work with, having the chemistry going helps. We’ve done some testing, so we’ve worked together a little bit. Last year, it was the third year I was running with the same team. I kind of knew the people I was working with. That made it a lot easier. When you get to the race, everybody knows what is required. But now, it’s also a brand new car. You start from scratch, it makes it fun. But for the new rules, there’s stuff that you could do in the past that you can’t do on the cars anymore. You just have to find ways around it. Testing wise, there isn’t a track that is similar to this one. We had a good test at Road Atlanta. We understood the car quite well there. That should help here.”

YOU’RE LOVE AFFAIR WITH THIS TRACK; WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR SECRETS FOR SUCCESS HERE? “It’s been a good track. I won my first and last IndyCar race here. Last year brought down the average a lot. That was annoying. I’ve always enjoyed those kinds of tracks, whatever series – Indy or F1 – these tracks where there’s an element of danger I would say and you have to really work on where the limit is at. If you go beyond it, something not so good will happen, probably end up crashing, in the sand trap or something. I always felt good on those kinds of tracks. The thing is, the laps are normally long and you always have different reference points. Whatever corner you get to, the trees are different, there something that is different. You kind of know right away where you’re at. There are a lot of blind corners. You need to force yourself to have reference points that are not the race track itself. You don’t start braking because you see the corner. You break because you know exactly where you’re at on the track. It could be a little painting on the guardrail, a lot of things like that. It’s like driving on radar basically.”

BRAKE MANAGEMENT IS HUGE; WHAT CAN YOU DO INSIDE THE RACE CAR MAYBE TO MANAGE THE BRAKES AS YOU GO? “The only thing you can do is not brake as hard which means braking earlier. When you’re fighting at the front and you’re running for position, that’s not something that you can really do. I had problems here last year, but all I had to do was pump the brakes all the way down the straight to make sure the pedal was there when I hit the brakes. They were good for two or three laps, then the fronts would start going away and you would end up locking the rear. You would spend two or three laps slowing down a bit, cooling them off and then you’re aggressive again. You can figure it out while you’re driving that suddenly you’ve gone a little too far. If you react quickly enough, then you can go back on them, but if you spend the next five or six laps just hammering them, then you get to the point you just won’t recover.”

HOW MUCH ARE YOU RACING THESE DAYS? “Not as much as I would like too. Right now, I’m just doing Montreal and here. That definitely is not a lot. Every year, it’s a little bit better. I guess before I turn 80, I’ll manage to get a full season in at some point. I’ve been doing some ice racing in France, that was interesting, and a little racing in Australia. I’m trying to get my hands into as many forms of racing as I can. It’s good experience. The goal would be to do a full season in NASCAR.”

IS IT CHALLENGING WHEN YOU’RE NOT IN THE CAR EVERY WEEK? “It is challenging and puts a lot of pressure on. If you do 30 races, you can afford to have a few bad ones. If you do just a couple of races, and they’re road course and you’re a road course specialist and one of them is Montreal, you’re hometown, then you either win or finish in the top three and it’s normal, or it was a lost weekend. A lot weighs on those races, the future. Last year, the good races helped me get a ride at the Glen and at the Brickyard. A lot depends on one or two races. A lot can go wrong that you can’t control.”

Rick

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NASCAR Qualifying

Status: Field Set

Last Updated: Friday, Jun 24, 2011 8:54 pm, EDT
Toyota/Save Mart 350




Infineon Raceway



Order Driver (No.) Car Qualifying Speed

1 Joey Logano (20) Toyota 93.256
2 Jamie McMurray (1) Chevrolet 93.223
3 Paul Menard (27) Chevrolet 93.176
4 Denny Hamlin (11) Toyota 93.081
5 Ryan Newman (39) Chevrolet 93.062
6 Kasey Kahne (4) Toyota 92.936
7 A J Allmendinger (43) Ford 92.935
8 Marcos Ambrose (9) Ford 92.918
9 Clint Bowyer (33) Chevrolet 92.830
10 Brian Vickers (83) Toyota 92.720
11 Kurt Busch (22) Dodge 92.616
12 Jimmie Johnson (48) Chevrolet 92.561
13 Jeff Gordon (24) Chevrolet 92.553
14 Martin Truex Jr. (56) Toyota 92.545
15 Brad Keselowski (2) Dodge 92.447
16 Mark Martin (5) Chevrolet 92.439
17 Juan Pablo Montoya (42) Chevrolet 92.411
18 Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88) Chevrolet 92.372
19 Kyle Busch (18) Toyota 92.348
20 Tony Stewart (14) Chevrolet 92.184
21 Bobby Labonte (47) Toyota 92.157
22 Greg Biffle (16) Ford 92.096
23 Carl Edwards (99) Ford 92.076
24 Regan Smith (78) Chevrolet 92.022
25 Jeff Burton (31) Chevrolet 91.986
26 Kevin Harvick (29) Chevrolet 91.818
27 Casey Mears (13) Toyota 91.764
28 Robby Gordon (7) Dodge 91.751
29 David Gilliland (34) Ford 91.689
30 Boris Said (51) Chevrolet 91.603
31 Joe Nemechek (87) Toyota 91.406
32 David Reutimann (00) Toyota 91.388
33 Matt Kenseth (17) Ford 91.315
34 David Ragan (6) Ford 91.255
35 P.J. Jones (177) Dodge 91.223
36 Dave Blaney (36) Chevrolet 91.214
37 Mike Skinner (60) Toyota 90.781
38 David Mayhew (66) Toyota 90.561
39 Terry Labonte (32) Ford 90.504
40 Brian Simo (181) Ford 90.346
41 Andy Lally (71) Ford 90.303
42 Chris Cook (37) Ford 90.285
43 Andy Pilgrim (46) Chevrolet 89.885
44 Tony Ave (38) DNQ 79.851

Rick

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - NSCS Final Qualifying - Infineon
June 24, 2011 , SONOMA, Calif. - Friday, June 24, 2011

Dodge Motorsports PR
Infineon Raceway
Save/Mart 350
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Final Qualifying



KURT BUSCH (No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T) Qualified 11th
“We were fastest in practice but just couldn’t put down the qualifying lap that we needed. We missed it in turns four and seven and were just slow in (turn) 10. When you add all that up, you just can’t give away that much time on this track. Our Shell/Pennzoil Dodge is really fast in race trim. We’ll work on it tomorrow.”

BRAD KESELOWSKI (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T) Qualified 15th
"A really good Miller Lite Dodge race car. We qualified inside the top 20 and that is huge progress from our effort here last year. I feel like I left something out there. Either way, I know that I have a really fast car for Sunday. We were really good in practice all day in race trim. I'm really optimistic for the race."

ROBBY GORDON (No. 7 SPEED Energy Dodge Charger R/T) Qualified 28th
"I didn't expect that. We were 16th in practice. We made a couple of changes and went the wrong way. We went up on rear springs, down on rear bar and our car was all over the place. We have all practice tomorrow to figure it out. I think tires are going to be really difficult on Sunday. I'm not sure if it's a different tire or what. I'm struggling and I think a lot of other teams are as well. We just can't find bite."

P.J. JONES (No. 77 SPEED Energy Dodge Charger R/T) Qualified 35th
"The excitement for us was getting the car ready before qualifying. We were tight for time getting this SPEED Dodge Energy car prepped for qualifying. I just wanted to make sure that I went out and ran the smoothest lap that I could and not run the car off the course. It worked. Our car was pretty good. We made some huge improvements from the first practice today. For only running six laps in practice we'll take that qualifying lap. I want to thank Dodge and Robby (Gordon) for the opportunity.”

Rick

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - NNS Practice Quotes - Road America
June 24, 2011 , ELKHART LAKE, Wisc. - Friday, June 24, 2011

Dodge Motorsports PR
ROAD AMERICA
NASCAR Nationwide Series
BUCYRUS 200 presented by Menards
Post-Practice Quotes


JACQUES VILLENEUVE (No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T)
“Practice started well for us today. We were really quick on older tires. As the track rubbered in and we put on new tires, the car didn’t work anymore. We have to figure out why. But at least at the end of the race you’re on old tires and that’s where you need to be aggressive.

“You have to start at the front, so you’re out of trouble on the start. That’s the main thing. We’ve been running in the top three all day. Hopefully, we can carry that on tomorrow.

“The engine is working well. The whole car is working well. We were quick out of the box. I’ve been racing before when the power wasn’t there; that really makes your day difficult. Now, we seem to be doing well down the straight line, that helps.”

TODD GORDON (Crew Chief, No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T)
“I think we made pretty good gains in the first practice. We got off on our adjustment about the third run of the second practice and really started chasing it, but we found it. We really felt we had pretty good speed there the second to last run on old tires. We got a lot of speed. We just have to go back to that baseline. I feel like we’ve got something pretty competitive and Jacques (Villeneuve) is doing a great job with the Discount Tire Dodge.

“Jacques is a talent to work with and a joy to work with. The car has good speed in it. I feel like our balance is pretty good. I look for us to be up front.”

ANDREW RANGER (No. 53 Waste Management Dodge Challenger R/T)
“We missed the first session of practice, but got the car ready for the second session and was P6 (sixth fastest). I’m really happy about that. We had a little problem with the brakes, a little problem with the fuel pump. It’s a brand new car. I was a little bit nervous today about this, but it’s normal. For tomorrow, I’m really excited. The car has a lot of power, a lot of horsepower. I’m really surprised about it. At the end of the straightaway, I was able to catch people.”

ALEX KENNEDY (No. 23 St. Baldrick’s Dodge Challenger R/T)
“We feel really good about the practice today. Our primary goal was to get the car stable. Last year, our car was fast, but didn’t stay fast for the entire run. Our primary goal this year was to keep the car stable and consistent for the entire race and we accomplished that fairly quickly in practice today. We focused on that and not on winning practice. You don’t win anything for winning practice. We had the 19th quickest time, but feel we have a car that is stable and can run consistent laps all race.”

Rick

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