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Atlanta Motor Speedway

What: Race 17 of 25 on Camping World Truck circuit
Where: Atlanta Motor Speedway, Hampton, GA
When: September 2, 2011 8:19 pm EDT SPEED
Laps: 130
Track Length: 1.54 miles
Race Length: 200.00 miles


Records
Date Series Driver Speed


11/12/95 Sprint Cup Race Dale Earnhardt 164.00
3/20/05 Sprint Cup Qualifying Ryan Newman 194.690
10/25/03 Nationwide Race Greg Biffle 146.00
10/25/03 Nationwide Qualifying Greg Biffle 192.300
3/18/05 Camping World Truck Race Ron Hornaday Jr. 142.00
3/18/05 Camping World Truck Qualifying Rick Crawford 182.735

Camping World Truck Series
Upcoming Race Sep 2
Atlanta 200



Location: Hampton, GA
Banking/Turns: Quad-Oval
Distance: 1.54 miles
Shape: Quad-Oval

Camping World Truck
Date Race Name Pole Winner Race Winner Make Purse

3/6/10 E-Z-GO 200 Ron Hornaday Jr. Kevin Harvick Chevrolet $505,804
3/7/09 American Commercial Lines 200 Kyle Busch Kyle Busch Toyota $530,402
10/25/08 E-Z-GO 200 Johnny Benson Ryan Newman Chevrolet $564,909
3/7/08 American Commercial Lines 200 Ron Hornaday Jr. Kyle Busch Toyota $552,521
10/27/07 EasyCare Vehicle Service Contracts 200 Ron Hornaday Jr. Kyle Busch Chevrolet $548,555
3/16/07 American Commercial Lines 200 Mike Skinner Mike Skinner Toyota $536,410




What: Race 26 of 34 on Nationwide circuit
Where: Atlanta Motor Speedway, Hampton, GA
When: September 3, 2011 7:46 pm EDT ESPN2
Laps: 195
Track Length: 1.54 miles
Race Length: 300.00 miles


Nationwide
Date Race Name Pole Winner Race Winner Make Purse


9/4/10 Great Clips 300 Kasey Kahne Jamie McMurray Chevrolet $1,076,369
9/5/09 Degree V12 300 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Kevin Harvick Chevrolet $1,146,784
3/8/08 Nicorette 300 Jeff Burton Matt Kenseth Ford $1,151,315
3/17/07 Nicorette 300 Kyle Busch Jeff Burton Chevrolet $1,115,577


What:Race 25 of 36 on Sprint Cup circuit
Where:Atlanta Motor Speedway, Hampton, GA
When:September 4, 2011 7:46 pm EDT ESPN2
Laps:325
Track Length:1.54 miles
Race Length:501.00 miles


Sprint Cup
Date Race Name Pole Winner Race Winner Make Purse


3/7/10 Kobalt Tools 500 at Atlanta Dale Earnhardt Jr. Kurt Busch Dodge $4,948,689
9/5/10 Emory Healthcare 500 Denny Hamlin Tony Stewart Chevrolet $6,101,958
3/8/09 Kobalt Tools 500 Mark Martin Kurt Busch Dodge $5,099,491
9/6/09 Pep Boys Auto 500 Martin Truex Jr. Kasey Kahne Dodge $6,282,099
3/9/08 Kobalt Tools 500 Jeff Gordon Kyle Busch Toyota $5,060,012
10/26/08 Pep Boys Auto 500 Jimmie Johnson Carl Edwards Ford $6,234,316
3/18/07 Kobalt Tools 500 Ryan Newman Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet $4,957,097
10/28/07 Pep Boys Auto 500 Greg Biffle Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet $6,156,331
 

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CUP: Kurt Busch Looks To Join Chase Crowd Sunday

Date: 08/30/2011
Location: Charlotte, NC

One Busch is in the Chase; the other is lurking.



Kurt Busch, who sits in eighth place in Sprint Cup points entering Sunday night’s AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway, can join his brother, Kyle, in the Chase with a finish of seventh or better.

Barring a major collapse in the last two races before the Chase, Kurt will be a Chaser. He is 60 points ahead of the 11th-place driver, which happens to be his Penske Racing teammate, Brad Keselowski. Keselowski appears headed for one of the two Chase wild-card spots.

“We’re in a pretty good situation as far as making the Chase in Atlanta, and that’s a big feather in our cap,” said Busch. “It’ll be a big deal for all the team sponsors and everyone involved with our ‘Double Deuce’ Dodge team to make the Chase again this season.

“It has come to be a measuring stick for the level of success a team has during a particular season. Making the Chase is like placing the stamp on the year as officially being successful.”

Busch’s goal is bigger, of course. He wants to match the Sprint Cup title he won in 2004, the first year of the Chase format. He also could use some momentum to carry into the Chase. In the past six races, he has three finishes of 21st or worse and has fallen from third to eighth in points.

“The bottom line is that we also have to look at the Atlanta and Richmond races as opportunities to get additional wins and accumulate the bonus points for when the clock goes back to zero and the points are reset,” Busch said. “Heading into Chicago (Sept. 18) and the opening race of the 10 races that make up the Chase, it would be huge to have more wins and get seeded higher when the Chase begins.”

Busch was seeded seventh at the start of the first Chase in 2004 and survived trouble – a right-front wheel problem that almost sent him into the pit wall – in the final race at Homestead-Miami Speedway to win the championship.

“We’re definitely coming back into Atlanta hoping to enjoy the level of success we have in recent races there,” said Busch, a winner three times at AMS. “But, when you look at the record, you’ll see that we have had our good runs during the day races there and haven’t had that level of success in the night races, although we did finish sixth there last fall.

“So, we’re coming in with a realistic level of optimism. We expect to do well and look to be really competitive this weekend, but we know it will be a challenge. Winning the two spring races in a row at Atlanta like we did in 2009 and 2010 definitely puts a little more confidence into our step coming back in there. But, we’ve seen week in and week out this season just how much things can change on a weekly basis. We understand the challenge that we’re up against.”

 

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - NSCS Race Advance - Atlanta
August 30, 2011 , HAMPTON, Ga - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Dodge Motorsports NSCS Race Advance
Advocare 500
Atlanta Motor Speedway
Sunday, Sept. 4, 2011



DODGE AT ATLANTA MOTOR SPEEDWAY
· Dodge has nine NASCAR Sprint Cup Series wins at Atlanta Motor Speedway – including three of the last four.
· Penske Racing and Dodge claimed six consecutive poles at Atlanta Motor Speedway (2003-2005).

DODGE CHASE CLINCH SCENARIOS

· Kurt Busch can clinch his sixth appearance in the Chase for the Sprint Cup at Atlanta if he leaves 49 points ahead of 11th. He is currently 60 points ahead of 11th and can guarantee a top-10 spot with at least a finish of seventh; or eighth and at least one lap led; or ninth and the most laps led.
· Brad Keselowski can clinch a Wild Card spot in the Chase if he is 48 points ahead of the driver 21st in the point standings after Atlanta. Keselowski is looking to move into the top 10 in the standings to collect bonus points (three) for each win. The two Wild Card winners do not get the bonus points and are seeded 11th and 12th.

DODGE NEWS AND NOTES
· Dodge has won two of the last four Sprint Cup races.
· Dodge has four wins, seven top threes, seven top fives and 10 top 10s in the last 12 races.
· Kurt Busch is the only Sprint Cup Series driver who has been in the top-10 in the driver point standings all 23 races this season.
· Dodge’s Brad Keselowski has gained 10 positions in the Cup Series driver standings in the last four races.

BRAD KESELOWSKI – WHAT A DIFFERENCE A YEAR MAKES
2010 2011
Wins 0 3

Top Fives 0 6

Top 10s 2 9

Laps Led 41 266

Points Position 25 11

STAT OF THE WEEK
· Brad Keselowski has an average finish of 1.75 in the last four Sprint Cup Series races. His recent finishes include: 1st (Pocono), 2nd (The Glen), 3rd (Michigan) and 1st (Bristol).

2011 DODGE SPRINT CUP REWIND
· Race 1: Kurt Busch won the Bud Shootout and a Gatorade Duel during Speedweeks.
· Races 12-15: Dodge earns four consecutive poles.
· Race 13: Keselowski won at Kansas; first Dodge win of the season.
· Race 16: Busch dominates at Infineon for first win of season and first road-course victory of his career.
· Race 21: Keselowski, racing with a broken left ankle, earns his second win of the season at Pocono Raceway.
· Race 23: Keselowski up to 12th in Cup Series driver points.
· Race 24: Keselowski wins his third race of the season. Moves up to 11th in points. Current No. 1 wild card driver.

THE DODGE BOYS
· Dodge has 211 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories.
· Dodge’s most recent win came at Bristol Motor Speedway. Brad Keselowski led 89 of the 500 laps en route to victory. The victory was the fourth for Dodge in 2011.
· Dodge teams have posted 51 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).

2011 SPRINT CUP SERIES SEASON BEST
· Kurt Busch Start: 1st (Kansas, Pocono & Michigan)
Finish: 1st (Infineon)
· Brad Keselowski Start: 1st (Charlotte)
Finish: 1st (Kansas, Pocono, Bristol)
· Robby Gordon Start: 30th (Daytona)
Finish: 16th (Daytona)

FROM THE ENGINEER
“Atlanta will provide two different races for two different sets of teams. Those teams still trying to qualify for the Chase will be pressing hard to gain points or get a win. Those teams that already know they're going to be in the Chase will likely be testing hard.

“Atlanta is the last 1.5-mile track that the Sprint Cup Series competes on before the Chase begins. And with four of the 10 Chase races being contested at the same distance, teams will likely be searching for anything at this track that might work on one of the very similar circuits we'll visit during the championship run. Look closely at top teams that are running well this week and some that are running not so well; you may find some interesting and new parts in their cars.”
Howard Comstock, Dodge Motorsports Engineering

DODGE MOTORSPORTS QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“While we know we can lock up a spot in the Chase there in Atlanta on Sunday night with a good finish, we still have to be in the mode of doing what it takes to win and bank us some more bonus points to help with our seeding when the Chase kicks in. There are several guys out there with more than one win like we have and we need to get ourselves up there with them during these next two races.”
Kurt Busch, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T

DODGE QUOTES
“We’re in a pretty good situation as far as making the Chase in Atlanta and that’s a big feather in our cap. It’ll be a big deal for all the team sponsors and everyone involved with our ‘Double Deuce’ Dodge Team to make the Chase again this season. It has come to be a measuring stick for the level of success a team has during a particular season. Making the Chase is like placing the stamp on the year as officially being successful.

“That said, it’s like accomplishing the first goal of the weekend at Atlanta in making the Chase again. The bottom line is that we also have to look at the Atlanta and Richmond races as opportunities to get additional wins and accumulate the bonus points for when the clock goes back to zero and the points are reset. Heading into Chicago and the opening race of the 10 races that make up the Chase, it would be huge to have more wins and get seeded higher when the Chase begins.”
Kurt Busch, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T

“I like the fact that Atlanta is a very slick racetrack. You come in to put tires on and you are almost three seconds a lap faster. That’s huge! A guy that will come in and pit one lap earlier than you do will gain almost half a straightaway on you. That puts pit strategy into focus. It’s just a fun place to race. I had a lot of success running the high line in the spring race last year. I don’t really think of myself as a driver that prefers the top, but I’ll definitely search around to see where my car is the fastest. That’s why we love racing at Atlanta.”
Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T
 

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes – NNS Race Advance – Atlanta
Published on August 31, 2011 by Official Release

Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes

NNS Race Advance Great Clips 300 Atlanta Motor Speedway Saturday, Sept. 3, 2011


BRAD KESELOWSKI RETURNS TO NNS Dodge’s Brad Keselowski will return to the seat of the No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger this weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The reigning 2010 NNS champion has been sidelined since suffering a broken left ankle sustained during a testing accident at Road America. Drivers filling in for the 2010 Nationwide Series champion the last four weeks include Sam Hornish Jr. at Iowa, Kurt Busch at Watkins Glen Jacques Villeneuve at Montreal and Parker Kligerman at Bristol Motor Speedway. The four drivers combined for one win, two poles and two top-10 finishes.

DODGE NEWS AND NOTES · Dodge is seeking its first Nationwide Series win at Atlanta Motor Speedway. · Dodge’s last Nationwide Series win came three weeks ago at Watkins Glen when Keselowski’s teammate Kurt Busch drove his Discount Tire/Ruby Tuesday Dodge Challenger to victory. · Jacques Villeneuve earned Dodge its last Nationwide Series pole at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal. Penske teammate Alex Tagliani started second making it an all-Dodge front row.

DODGE IN THE NASCAR NATIONWIDE SERIES · Dodge is fielding two entries in the Nationwide Series this year from the Penske Racing stable. Sam Hornish Jr. joined teammate Brad Keselowski for a limited race schedule. Hornish has made eight starts this season. His best finish of sixth came at Nashville.

BRAD KESELOWSKI AT ATLANTA · Brad Keselowski will be making his fifth career NASCAR Nationwide start at AMS. His fourth-place finish at the fall event in 2009 is a career best at AMS.

BRAD KESELOWSKI– No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T Career Stats (Atlanta): Starts: 4 Wins: 0 Top Fives: 1 Top 10s: 2 Poles: 0 Laps Led: 5 Average Start: 21.0 Average Finish: 11.75

KESELOWSKI ON RACING AT ATLANTA “Atlanta is a place I knew I would like after my first lap on the track. The sensation of speed you get through the corner in a Nationwide Series car is pretty unbelievable. That’s one thing that amazes people every time I tell them that a Nationwide Series car – through the corners – is faster than a Cup Series car. Whether you are running the top, the bottom or the middle, Atlanta is all about speed.”

FAST FACTS · Brad Keselowski has two wins in his last four NASCAR Nationwide Series starts. The wins came at Kentucky and Lucas Oil Raceway (Indy). · In 159 career Nationwide starts, Keselowski has 14 wins, 67 top fives, 95 top 10s, and 10 poles. · Dodge has 37 wins in the NASCAR Nationwide Series.

FROM THE DRIVER “It was really important for me to return to the Nationwide Series this season. I know there are a lot of people who think it may be a bad idea, but I am a man of my word. I made a promise to everyone on my team that I would be behind the wheel of the Discount Tire Dodge. We’re in a pretty good spot as far as the Chase is concerned so this is a good time to go back to the Nationwide Series. My injuries are feeling better every day and the extra seat time should benefit both teams.” Brad Keselowski, No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T

FROM THE CREW CHIEF “These last four weeks have been very interesting for me. On one hand, my driver was on the sidelines with an injury and my thoughts were with him, as much as they could be. On the other hand, I had the opportunity to work with four outstanding race car drivers. I feel that’s made me a better, more well-rounded crew chief. I appreciate Kurt (Busch), Sam (Hornish Jr.), Jacques (Villeneuve) and Parker (Kligerman) filling in. We had some strong runs with those guys and I think Brad can come back this weekend and put the Discount Tire machine in Victory Lane.” Todd Gordon, crew chief, No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T
 

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Paul Wolfe: From Driver To Crew Chief - ESPN Video - ESPN

Wolfe, Keselowski have plenty to prove

MOORESVILLE, N.C. -- Paul Wolfe lowered his head from behind his desk in his purposely nondescript office at Penske Racing, trying to figure out a tactful way to say what he thought about Brad Keselowski when they first met in 2009 to discuss joining forces.

There was no easy way to put it.

"To be honest with you, I didn't like him a whole lot," said the crew chief for Keselowski's unbelievably hot Penske Racing Sprint Cup team. "I didn't."

He really, really didn't.

Keselowski, then in the No. 88 Nationwide Series car at JR Motorsports, had wrecked cars that Wolfe worked hard to build more than once. There was one run-in in particular at Memphis, where Wolfe felt he had a shot to put the underdog CJM Racing team into Victory Lane, tainting the 34-year-old New York native's opinion of the driver considered by many at the time a punk.

"He dumped [us]," Wolfe recalled. "To be honest, I really didn't care for the guy."

Wolfe loves Keselowski now, and for many of the same reasons he despised him just a few years ago. As a former driver who six years ago would have done anything to be in Keselowski's position, Wolfe understands what it takes to be at the top of the profession.


The first of many? Paul Wolfe, left, and Brad Keselowski won the 2010 Nationwide Series championship.

And right now, Keselowski is on top with two wins in the past four races -- three on the season -- taking him from Chase long shot to one of the favorites.

"I knew he could drive," Wolfe said with a sheepish grin on his face. "I saw Brad in that 88 car win races when I didn't feel like he had the best race car. I was like, 'That's the kind of guy I want to work for.'

"There's days when you don't have the best race car and you want a driver that can make up for it, and vice versa."

But enough about Keselowski. This is about the man behind the scenes, the one few outside of NASCAR's inner circle knew much about three months ago when the No. 2 team was 25th in points, 14 spots behind where it is now.

This is about a man who five years from now we could be talking about in the same high esteem as Chad Knaus, who has helped Jimmie Johnson to five consecutive championships.

This is about a man who is, unlike his driver, not hard to like.

This is about Wolfe, who went from an unpaid welder for the Late Model team of future Joe Gibbs Racing president J.D. Gibbs to a driver who could have been a potential star with a little money and sponsorship to one of the top young crew chiefs in the garage.

"Paul is a smart guy," said Keselowski, 11th in points heading into Sunday night's race at Atlanta. "He's good and we're on the same wavelength. So much of this sport is about that.

"So without that, I don't think I could be successful and couldn't be where I'm at here as we stand."

Rags to riches

Wolfe was 19 when he knocked on the door at Gibbs' Late Model shop. He had a welding degree from a small school in Ohio to prove he could build frames and little money in his bank account.

"Give me a chance," Wolf asked Gibbs.

Gibbs did, but for the first six months Wolfe worked for free and lived with friends. He finally started getting $200 to $300 a week when Gibbs went to the Busch North Series in 1997, but there wasn't much job security.

"It was a disaster," Wolfe said of Gibbs' season.

The two still joke about how bad Gibbs was as a driver and how smart it was for both to eventually give up driving.

"At least part of where he is now he owes to me," Gibbs said. "I tore up more stuff and gave him more headaches than you can imagine, so he's well trained."



I'm probably not the most optimistic guy out there. I doubt myself a little more than I should. Maybe that's what makes me successful. I feel like every day I wake up I've got to go prove myself again.
” -- Paul Wolfe

Gibbs also was instrumental in getting Wolfe behind the wheel. In 40 starts in NASCAR's K&N Pro Series East from 2000 to 2004, Wolfe had two poles, 19 top-10s and nine top-5s.

That led to him driving in the Nationwide Series, first for Tommy Baldwin and then Ray Evernham, who was trying to establish a program for his young Dodge organization. But six races into the 2005 season, after consecutive finishes of 16th and 10th, Evernham turned to Cup drivers Kasey Kahne and Jeremy Mayfield because Wolfe wasn't attracting sponsors.

"In fairness to him, he was a pretty decent driver," Evernham said.

But like Evernham, Kenny Francis, Baldwin and others who went on to become successful crew chiefs, there came a time when it was apparent Wolfe's future wasn't in driving.

"The reality is, if he had gotten some breaks driving a car, he could still be driving today," Gibbs said. "He was really, really good behind the wheel."

But Wolfe was even better under the hood of the car.

"Everything that kid always touched was like immaculate," Baldwin said. "It was unbelievable when he worked on cars, how detailed they were. That's why he is successful."

Wolfe is successful because he was smart enough to realize that.

"At the end of 2005, there wasn't any successful rides for me out there," he said. "I could have done start-and-park-type teams, but [to feed] my want to win races and be successful … those opportunities weren't there.

"Could I have done it if I had gotten the opportunity? It's hard to say. But I knew I could be the best at this position with time."

Thanks, but no thanks, BK

Wolfe wasn't sure what Keselowski wanted in August 2009 when he summoned him to his motor coach at Michigan.

Apparently, Keselowski knew what he wanted. Having observed Wolfe the past three years, first working as a crew chief for FitzBradshaw, then Braun Racing and then CJM Racing supported by JGR, he saw a raw talent looking to make a name for himself just like he was.

"I told him I'm going to move on, do this deal with Penske, that there's this Nationwide program, I'm excited about it, I like what I see out of you watching you from a distance, I think you should interview for the job and I think you'd be the leading candidate," Keselowski recalled.
big reason Brad Keselowski went from midpack driver to Chase front-runner is crew chief Paul Wolfe and his over-the-wall gang.



Again, Wolfe didn't care for Keselowski at the time. But he was polite about it and said, "I appreciate the offer and opportunity, but I am all set."

He was set until funding at CJM fell apart. So when Penske Racing officials, unaware of Keselowski's contact, revisited Wolfe in October, he was more open to the idea.

Wolfe also had an offer to go to JGR and run the No. 20 Nationwide program, with Dave Rogers moving up to Kyle Busch's Cup program.

"That was a tough decision," Wolfe said. "I loved working for Gibbs and everything they stood for."

But he chose Penske Racing for a reason you have to admire -- for the opportunity to build a Nationwide program from scratch. He wanted to put his stamp on something instead of just adding to one of the most successful programs in the garage, in much the same manner Keselowski did when he chose Penske Racing over staying under the Hendrick Motorsports umbrella.

"I felt with the right funding and the right driver I could win races," Wolfe said.

He did, leading Keselowski to six wins and the first NASCAR championship for Penske Racing in 2010. He was rewarded by being named Keselowski's crew chief on the Cup level this season.

"Like Brad, I can look back and say maybe this was the better move for me," Wolfe said.

Like oil and water

Wolfe lowered his head again, laughing at being asked when he first began to like Keselowski.

"Whew!" he said.

Wolfe likes joking about it now. But at the time he made the move to Penske he realized "Brad was the kind of guy you wanted on your side."

In many ways Wolfe and Keselowski are complete opposites. Wolfe is quiet and shy, not one to openly express his opinion unless asked for it. His office is a reflection of that. There are no personal or family pictures on the gray walls, nothing to let you know anything about the man who works in it.


Sprint Cup logo NASCAR's Chase for the Sprint Cup has a new format in 2011, and possible a new champion. ESPN.com Topics has you covered on all the changes as five-time champ Jimmie Johnson looks to defend his title. Topics Page »

Keselowski is outspoken and charismatic, not afraid to say whatever is on his mind. That was evident again a week ago when he wrote on Twitter that Danica Patrick had opened a "Pandora's box" for all women in racing by posing half-naked in several magazines to promote her career.

"I'm like, 'Gosh darn it, Brad! Can you keep your mouth shut on anything?'" Wolfe said with a laugh.

But Wolfe understands that Keselowski's brashness is part of what makes him great, just like his own quiet attention to detail helps make him great as a crew chief.

"Sometimes we need people in the sport that are honest and give you an opinion," Wolfe said. "A lot of times, you have drivers who say what they think everybody wants to hear. It's not the truth a lot of the time.

"Brad will tell you the truth. Sometimes it upsets people. At the end of the day, when he gets in that race car, he's proven he belongs at this level."

Wolfe has proved he belongs, as well. He has proved that with a little perseverance and patience good things happen to good people who work hard, that first impressions about people aren't always the best.

"I'm probably not the most optimistic guy out there," Wolfe admitted. "I doubt myself a little more than I should. Maybe that's what makes me successful. I feel like every day I wake up I've got to go prove myself again."

So does Keselowski, another reason they like each other so much now.


 

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2011 NSCS AdvoCare 500 Q&A with Dodge Motorsports Driver, Brad Keselowski
Press Release
Post a Comment September 2, 2011



Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge, signs an autograph in the garage area


BRAD KESELOWSKI (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T)
CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THE CHANCE TO WIN THE $3 MILLION WITH THE SPRINT SUMMER SHOWDOWN? “It’s an awesome promotion and ’m proud of Sprint to put this on to give everyone an opportunity for great things, especially the fans. Obviously, there is an element for teams, which has my guys excited. Another element is for the foundations and charities that all of us drivers represent. It’s all for a great cause and I’m proud to be a part of it. I’m just excited to see which one of us can win it, if we can get it done.”

WITH A $3 MILLION BONUS ON THE LINE, DOES IT TURN THE RACE INTO AN “ALL-STAR” TYPE RACE FOR YOU? “I think the timing is rather perfect because all of the drivers, for the most part, have figured out who’s going to be in and who’s not. I applaud the timing to run for this. It really doesn’t make a difference for Kyle (Busch) or myself who are locked into the Chase. It should be interesting on how that plays out.”

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THE RECENT RUN THAT YOU’RE TEAM HAS BEEN ON? “It’s been an amazing run and I feel awful privileged to have as fast of race cars that I’ve had over the last few weeks. When you run through a point in time that you don’t have fast race cars, it certainly feels good to get into some good equipment and get going. It’s certainly an honor. I wish I could pinpoint what it is. I have a hard time believing that having a broken foot makes you a better race car driver. I think that it’s the team coming together and clicking as one and I’m proud to be a part of that.”

DO YOU BELIEVE IN THE THEORY THAT THINGS RUN IN CYCLES? “I think that it’s more than just in NASCAR. It always does work in cycles. You try your best to capitalize when you’re on top of the cycle. You try your best to try and minimize the amount of time when you’re on the bottom of the cycle. When you have success, you can try and learn and try and repeat it and try to minimize the bad part of it. We’re on the top of the cycle right now and can very easily turn around put us at the bottom of the cycle when it counts in the Chase. We’ll just ride the wave and hopefully it works out for us.”

THERE IS PLENTY OF TALK ABOUT GUYS LIKE STEWART, KAHNE, ETC, WHO HAVE BEEN SUCCESSFUL AT ATLANTA. ARE YOU (KESELOWSKI AND KYLE BUSCH) LIKELY TO BE UP FRONT AT THE FINISH AS THE TWO WHO HAVE WON HERE LAST YEAR AND YEARS PAST? “I don’t think that you can look at previous stats and draw conclusions from them. If that’s the case, you’d look at Terry Labonte, Bill Elliott, etc.… and they’d still win. They were the guys to beat 10, 15 years ago. Things change in this sport. The cars change. What it takes to be successful changes, all those things. I’d like to think that my past stats here and other places are just that, stats. We’re going out to try and break them. I don’t think that it’s always fair to look at stats and draw conclusions. It’s good that we run the races.”

- Darnell Communications for Dodge Motorsports, Press Release
 

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Friday, Sept. 2, 2011

Dodge Motorsports PR

Atlanta Motor Speedway

AdvoCare 500

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

Kurt Busch Open Interview





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

YOU ARE EIGHTH IN POINTS, HAVE ONE WIN THIS SEASON, AND COMING TO A TRACK WHERE YOU HAVE A LOT OF SUCCESS. TALK ABOUT HOW ATLANTA MOTOR SPEEDWAY ADAPTS TO YOUR DRIVING STYLE. “This is one of the fun racetracks that all the drivers look forward coming to, not that we don’t look forward to going to all of ‘em, but Atlanta, with the old surface, as much as you slide around on the racetrack, as much as pit strategy is always an interesting call, this race really keeps you on your toes. And so a full 500 miles here is a tough chore and I’ve been able to win three races here, a couple during a spring and one in the fall that was actually rain-delayed and actually finished under the lights at night. It’s really a challenging track to keep up with and for us here in Atlanta it’s nice to be close to the Coca-Cola headquarters. Had a nice ride and drive program with them yesterday as well as a wonderful dinner last night with some of the top executives to just show the support for all the Coca-Cola does for us on the track and how we’re able to get their brand out there up in the forefront. But again, it’s Labor Day weekend. It’s a great weekend for all the families to come out and enjoy the track with this being really the last official weekend of summer. Hopefully we’ll get a lot of our young fans here out at the track before they have to go back to school.”

CONCERNING THE FUTURE INVOLVEMENT OF DODGE AND THE CHRYSLER GROUP IN NASCAR UNDER THE OWNERSHIP OF THE EUROPEAN FIAT AUTO GROUP, DID YOU HAVE THE POSSIBILITY TO TALK TO THE TOP GUY AND WHAT WAS HIS REACTION TO THE NASCAR PROGRAM? “Well knowing their involvement with Formula 1 it still gives us a good sense to know that they are going to be committed behind the NASCAR program. From what I understand our contract is going into many years from now. But with Ralph Gilles and Brain Viger, the top executives at Dodge, they are always there for support with what we’re doing on the technology-side, what we’re doing to advance the program. Whether its engines, whether its tires I feel like we get the adequate support from Dodge and its been great for us at Penske Racing to carry the banner as the lone Dodge team out on the track and we’re doing very well with multiple race wins on the Nationwide and on the Cup side and it’s just a continued support effort from both sides being so close to each other ’cause we’re the only ones out there. We have to continue pushing hard. With [Sergio] Marchionne, I would say with his involvement, Fiat, and with their Ferrari involvement in F1 that this should only play out for us in our favor.”

IN THE RACE THAT YOU WON HERE AT NIGHT, YOU SCRAPED THE WALL ABOUT FOUR TIMES AND THAT WAS PART OF IT. THAT WAS PART OF WINNING THE RACE AND NOT BEING AFRAID TO DO THAT. COMMENT ON HOW THIS TRACK AND A HOT NIGHT RACE SEPARATES THE DRIVERS WHO DON’T MIND BEING SIDEWAYS FROM THE MORE METHODICAL DRIVERS? TONY STEWART IS USUALLY GOOD ON HOT, SLICK TRACKS. WILL HE BE COMPETITION AS A DRIVER WHO DOESN’T MIND SCRAPING THE WALL? “I believe so. I think it gets back to some of the dirt track heritage some of the drivers have. A guy like Tony Stewart that knows what a dry, slick racetrack is, he’ll get out there and put that right rear tire up on the edge of the cushion and haze that tire. You don’t do that too often with the Cup cars because it just abuses the tire but the overall feel of driving the car elbows out and just letting all the rough edges drag, that’s what Atlanta is with the old surface. Then you add in the hot extreme temperatures really adds to the excitement behind the wheel. Even a guy like Kasey Kahne who’s won here before; Carl Edwards, a dirt tracker from the Midwest, you see that come into play here with this surface.”

TO CLARIFY, YOU WILL BE AT THE WHITE HOUSE NEXT WEEK, CORRECT? “Yes, yes, I will be at the White House. I heard there was a nice article written that I was part of the group that wasn’t going. All along it was my intention to go and we just had to clear up a scheduling issue. But a lot of people write about non-related racing things sometimes. We’ll be there next Wednesday. I mean, who would turn down the opportunity to go to the White House? For me it’s an honor, it’s a privilege and I’ve had the chance to meet Bush and Obama in the past. To be a Chase driver and to go to the White House it’s an important visit ’cause I might not make the Chase every year and I’ll miss out on those opportunities.”

DO YOU THINK TOO MUCH IS MADE OF THOSE WHO HAVE SCHEDULING DIFFICULTIES AND CAN’T MAKE IT? “It’s everybody’s personal schedule that has to be adjusted when somebody like that makes a phone call and for me obviously that’s the right choice. We had to push around the 2012 official photo shoot for next season with all of the merchandise, all of the marketing; all of the campaign that we put together that has to be released in January. We have to get that done by the end of September to not be too far behind for when Daytona starts. Everybody has these types of schedules. The week after Richmond is now booked solid from NASCAR with media where I’ve got to go to Miami. Some drivers have to go all the way out to Phoenix; some drivers have to go up to Loudon, New Hampshire. They want a driver that’s in the Chase to go to each of the Chase markets we’re going to. Then you go to the week after Chicago [and] we’re already scheduled through there. It’s tough, busy schedules for everybody.”

WE’VE ALL TAKEN NOTICE OF WHAT YOUR TEAMMATE BRAD KESELOWSKI HAS DONE OVER THE LAST FOUR WEEKS AND ONE THING THAT STANDS OUT IS IN THE LAST FOUR WEEKS HE HAS NOT RUN ANY NATIONWIDE RACES. YOU OCCASIONALLY RUN IN THE NATIONWIDE SERIES. IS THERE A CORRELATION BETWEEN HIS SUCCESS AND THE ABILITY TO FOCUS MORE ON THAT CUP CAR? “That’s where all along I thought he could do better once he focused more on the Cup car. It’s tough as a new driver coming in to gain the experience that you need on track and yes, he needed to do that for the first step. The second step, win that Nationwide championship. He did that. Third step, now we’ve got to get the Cup car as the primary focus and gel with his new crew chief Paul Wolfe. He’s done that now. Is it a coincidence that it happened here in these last few weeks? Personal injury to anybody makes everybody evaluate where they are. They have a lot of time to sit at home for rehab and he’s done that but it’s just clicked. It’s been great to watch and it’s been inspiring for myself and Steve Addington to know hey, the stuff’s right there. We just need to be on the front side of the eight-ball and not on the backside of the eight-ball with some of the things that we’ve positioned ourselves with on the 22 car. But for him not to run Nationwide I think the Cup focus is there and it’s great to see. I guess he’s locked in the Chase. Now he’s got to do that. He’s got to run hard in this Chase to be a championship contender.”

YOUR TEAMMATE CAN TAKE HOME A MILLION DOLLARS IF HE WINS HERE SUNDAY NIGHT. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE CAR THAT YOU USED TO DRIVE POSSIBLY BAGGING A MILLION AND WHAT HAS THE BUZZ BEEN LIKE AT THE PENSKE SHOP OVER THAT POSSIBILITY WITH THOSE GUYS WALKING AWAY A MILLION DOLLARS RICHER? “It’s been great. If it comes down to me and Brad running 1-2 at the end I’m going to have to scratch my head a little bit. Maybe I should make a deal before hand to get a certain percentage. But really it’s a great promotional program from Sprint to have the Sprint Summer Showdown and to have drivers involved and just to be them, that one group. It reminds you of the old-school days of the No Bull that Winston would put up and have a group of five drivers eligible to win a million bucks, million dollars for a fan, and what’s unique is that a charity is going to win a million dollars out of this as well. So I’m disappointed that we weren’t part of it but it’s exciting to see Brad part of it and those guys at the shop are definitely pumped. And Miller Lite, with the excitement recently, those guys I know are very excited about the attention that the 2 car is getting.”
 

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NASCAR Results
Last Updated: Saturday, Sep 3, 2011 1:54 am, EDT
Good Sam Club 200
Status: Final Atlanta Motor Speedway



Order Driver (No.) Car Pts/Bonus Laps Laps Led Winnings

1 Ron Hornaday Jr. (33) Chevrolet 47/4 130 17 $39,965
2 Clint Bowyer (2) Chevrolet 44/2 130 97 $25,315
3 Kyle Busch (18) Toyota 42/1 130 14 $21,065
4 Blake Feese (32) Chevrolet 40/0 130 0 $19,040
5 Ryan Newman (108) Chevrolet 39/0 130 0 $14,715
6 Austin Dillon (3) Chevrolet 39/1 130 2 $13,090
7 Matt Crafton (88) Chevrolet 37/0 130 0 $13,145
8 Ricky Carmichael (4) Chevrolet 36/0 130 0 $14,245
9 Todd Bodine (5) Toyota 35/0 130 0 $12,915
10 James Buescher (31) Chevrolet 34/0 130 0 $12,765
11 Jack Smith (63) Ford 33/0 130 0 $10,315
12 Parker Kligerman (29) Dodge 32/0 130 0 $12,190
13 Joey Coulter (22) Chevrolet 31/0 130 0 $11,090
14 Max Papis (9) Toyota 30/0 130 0 $10,990
15 Ryan Sieg (39) Chevrolet 29/0 129 0 $12,215
16 Timothy Peters (17) Toyota 28/0 129 0 $10,790
17 David Starr (81) Toyota 27/0 129 0 $10,735
18 Brendan Gaughan (62) Toyota 26/0 129 0 $10,610
19 Colin Braun (51) Ford 25/0 129 0 $8,310
20 Nelson Piquet Jr. (8) Chevrolet 24/0 129 0 $11,235
21 Josh Richards (151) Toyota 23/0 128 0 $8,210
22 Miguel Paludo (7) Toyota 22/0 128 0 $10,410
23 Jennifer Jo Cobb (10) Ford 21/0 127 0 $8,110
24 Chris Cockrum (66) Chevrolet 20/0 126 0 $10,335
25 Jason White (23) Chevrolet 19/0 125 0 $10,460
26 Justin Lofton (6) Toyota 18/0 124 0 $9,010
27 Chris Fontaine (84) Chevrolet 0/0 123 0 $8,335
28 Justin Marks (98) Chevrolet 16/0 116 0 $7,960
29 Johnny Sauter (13) Chevrolet 15/0 108 0 $8,935
30 B.J. McLeod (178) Chevrolet 0/0 37 0 $8,410
31 Johanna Long (20) Toyota 13/0 36 0 $7,885
32 Cole Whitt (60) Chevrolet 12/0 19 0 $7,860
33 Charles Vest (109) Ford 11/0 14 0 $7,835
34 Johnny Chapman (07) Chevrolet 10/0 8 0 $7,785
35 Mike Garvey (138) Chevrolet 0/0 7 0 $7,755
36 Dennis Setzer (93) Chevrolet 8/0 6 0 $7,719
 

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NASCAR Qualifying
Last Updated: Saturday, Sep 3, 2011
AdvoCare 500
Field Set Atlanta Motor Speedway




Order Driver (No.) Car Qualifying Speed

1 Kasey Kahne (4) Toyota 186.196
2 Clint Bowyer (33) Chevrolet 185.922
3 Kyle Busch (18) Toyota 185.841
4 Brian Vickers (83) Toyota 185.772
5 Jeff Gordon (24) Chevrolet 185.735
6 Matt Kenseth (17) Ford 185.710
7 Carl Edwards (99) Ford 185.561
8 Martin Truex Jr. (56) Toyota 185.542
9 Ryan Newman (39) Chevrolet 185.486
10 Kurt Busch (22) Dodge 185.325
11 A J Allmendinger (43) Ford 185.288
12 Juan Pablo Montoya (42) Chevrolet 185.177
13 Denny Hamlin (11) Toyota 185.127
14 Brad Keselowski (2) Dodge 185.115
15 Greg Biffle (16) Ford 185.059
16 David Reutimann (00) Toyota 184.800
17 Jimmie Johnson (48) Chevrolet 184.462
18 Marcos Ambrose (9) Ford 184.272
19 David Ragan (6) Ford 184.015
20 Tony Stewart (14) Chevrolet 183.899
21 Kevin Harvick (29) Chevrolet 183.801
22 Paul Menard (27) Chevrolet 183.680
23 Bobby Labonte (47) Toyota 183.394
24 Joey Logano (20) Toyota 183.382
25 Jamie McMurray (1) Chevrolet 183.339
26 Regan Smith (78) Chevrolet 183.152
27 Jeff Burton (31) Chevrolet 183.121
28 Michael McDowell (66) Toyota 183.025
29 Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88) Chevrolet 182.898
30 Scott Speed (46) Ford 182.856
31 J.J. Yeley (38) Ford 182.500
32 Mark Martin (5) Chevrolet 182.440
33 Robby Gordon (7) Dodge 181.759
34 Joe Nemechek (87) Toyota 181.693
35 Dave Blaney (36) Chevrolet 181.437
36 David Gilliland (34) Ford 180.745
37 Landon Cassill (51) Chevrolet 180.575
38 Casey Mears (13) Toyota 180.252
39 Mike Skinner (60) Toyota 180.012
40 Mike Bliss (32) Ford 179.889
41 Travis Kvapil (55) Ford 179.872
42 Andy Lally (71) Ford 178.493
43 David Starr (195) Ford 179.737
44 Tony Raines (37) DNQ 179.592
45 David Stremme (30) DNQ 179.516
46 Geoffrey Bodine (135) DNQ 178.758
47 T.J. Bell (150) DNQ 178.643
 

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - Keys for Success - Atlanta
September 3, 2011 , HAMPTON, Ga
Dodge Motorsports PR
Atlanta Motor Speedway
AdvoCare 500
Atlanta Motor Speedway
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series




KEYS FOR SUCCESS: AdvoCare 500

HAMPTON, Ga., (Saturday, Sept. 3, 2011) – Each race weekend, selected Dodge Motorsports engineers, Penske Racing engineers and crew chiefs, drivers or engine specialists give their insight on the ‘Keys for Success’ for the upcoming race. This week, Travis Geisler, Director of Competition, Penske Racing - provides the keys for Sunday afternoon’s Sprint Cup race.

Track: Atlanta Motor Speedway (Race 25 of 36 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series)

Race: AdvoCare 500 (325 laps / 500 miles)

Trivia Question: How many laps has Kurt Busch led in his three previous wins at Atlanta Motor Speedway? (Answer Below)

TRAVIS GEISLER (Director of Competition, Penske Racing)

Durability: “This is definitely a tough place on cars. It’s super-fast but it’s also kind of high contact. There’s a pretty good chance of getting in the wall. That high lane comes in as the race goes on and the guys get closer and closer. Taking care of your equipment throughout the night is the key.”

Changing Track Conditions: “The toughest thing I think for this race is changing track conditions. We only really had practice last night that’s going to be representative of what the track is going to be. This practice today is almost a squeaks and rattles run. You can’t really tune your setup but it’s not going to be anything like we’re going to have tomorrow night.”

Driver Patience: “If you want to go after it and run as hard as you can for the first five laps of the run you’ll be the fastest car out there but you’ll also be the slowest car at the end of the fuel run. It always seems like we have some long runs here that you’ve got to take care of your car and be good at the end because you can pass a lot of cars at the end of a run if you’ve took care of your tires at the start of it.”

Track Position: “You’ll see a lot of short-pitting going on. I doubt you’ll see anybody run until the end of a fuel run unless it’s maybe the last run of the truck race there with [Ron] Hornaday. If you’re running 10th or 15th and need to make some gains, I think you’re going to be able to short-pit eight or 10 laps and really get an advantage on guys because you’re going to be a second and a half, two seconds faster. I think early to middle of the race it’s a pretty good time to take advantage of that short pit thing. As you push later in the race you’re risking more and more because you have less time to overcome the problem.”






Trivia Question Answer: Kurt Busch has led 447 total laps in his three previous wins.
 

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - NSCS Final Qualifying - Atlanta
September 3, 2011 , HAMPTON, Ga
Dodge Motorsports PR
Atlanta Motor Speedway
AdvoCare 500
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Qualifying Notes



ROBBY GORDON (No. 7 SPEED Energy Dodge Charger R/T): HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TRYING TO QUALIFY EACH WEEK? “The reality is today I can’t find enough sponsors to run the whole race. But if you just stay home you don’t learn. The deal is this gives us the opportunity to come learn and we’re not the only ones doing it. As much as it hurts everybody hearing me do it, it hurts me to do it. I’m a racer and I want to go out and compete and race people but the first thing we have to do is we have to learn how to qualify so that we can race people and we’re working on that very hard.”

ARE YOU ENCOURAGED BY THE RUN? “I’ve always liked Atlanta. Our Dodge Charger is good. It’s our own powerplant with Joey Arrington so we’re obviously making enough power to make the show so I’m happy about that.”

KURT BUSCH (No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T): “We picked up time from where we were, just on the tight side of things. Hard to know exactly where we’ll pan out. Just a lot of track temperature changes due to times that we’ve been out practicing. You almost have to just shoot from the hip and just gauge for the middle so we’ll see where we end up.”

HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO QUALIFY HERE AT ATLANTA? “It’s really difficult to know how much speed you’re gonna end up picking up and then being able to digest it as quick as you can and then put a lap down.”

BRAD KESELOWSKI (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T): “We were just a little slow, a little off the pace here. Atlanta has been a little tough on us. We put up a good lap in practice and it was unfortunate that we couldn’t back it up but we’re still plugging away, still working on it.”

YOU WENT OUT LATE IN THE SESSION. WAS THAT AN ADVANTAGE? “It should be an advantage. It’s hard to tell. With all the cloud cover it really wasn’t any difference, I feel like.”

ARE YOU HAPPY WITH THE RACE SETUP? “It’s hard to tell. I don’t think anybody will know until they drop the green.”
 

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NASCAR Results
Last Updated: Saturday, Sep 3, 2011
Great Clips 300
Status: Final Atlanta Motor Speedway




Order Driver (No.) Car Pts/Bonus Laps Laps Led Winnings Lap Progress

1 Carl Edwards (60) Ford 48/5 195 101 $60,125 Chart
2 Kyle Busch (18) Toyota 43/1 195 31 $30,450 Chart
3 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (6) Ford 42/1 195 3 $33,018 Chart
4 Kevin Harvick (33) Chevrolet 41/1 195 31 $18,100 Chart
5 Kasey Kahne (38) Chevrolet 40/1 195 24 $17,750 Chart
6 Justin Allgaier (31) Chevrolet 39/1 195 2 $24,268 Chart
7 Brad Keselowski (22) Dodge 37/0 195 0 $17,110 Chart
8 Aric Almirola (88) Chevrolet 36/0 195 0 $21,138 Chart
9 Jason Leffler (30) Chevrolet 35/0 195 0 $20,543 Chart
10 Elliott Sadler (2) Chevrolet 34/0 195 0 $21,143 Chart
11 Ryan Truex (20) Toyota 33/0 195 0 $20,568 Chart
12 Brian Scott (11) Toyota 32/0 195 0 $19,043 Chart
13 Steve Wallace (66) Toyota 31/0 195 0 $18,243 Chart
14 Jeremy Clements (51) Chevrolet 31/1 195 1 $19,643 Chart
15 Mike Bliss (19) Chevrolet 29/0 194 0 $19,393 Chart
16 Mike Wallace (01) Chevrolet 28/0 193 0 $17,643 Chart
17 Matt Carter (39) Ford 27/0 193 0 $19,768 Chart
18 Joe Nemechek (87) Toyota 26/0 192 0 $17,268 Chart
19 Kenny Wallace (09) Toyota 25/0 192 0 $17,193 Chart
20 Michael Annett (62) Toyota 24/0 191 0 $17,818 Chart
21 Jamie McMurray (7) Chevrolet 23/0 190 0 $10,550 Chart
22 Josh Wise (40) Chevrolet 22/0 190 0 $16,943 Chart
23 Blake Koch (81) Dodge 21/0 189 0 $17,268 Chart
24 Derrike Cope (28) Chevrolet 20/0 189 0 $16,793 Chart
25 Morgan Shepherd (89) Chevrolet 19/0 188 0 $16,893 Chart
26 Robert Richardson Jr. (23) Chevrolet 18/0 187 0 $17,168 Chart
27 T.J. Bell (150) Chevrolet 17/0 187 0 $10,575 Chart
28 Eric McClure (14) Chevrolet 16/0 184 0 $16,568 Chart
29 Jennifer Jo Cobb (113) Dodge 15/0 183 0 $10,050 Chart
30 Kevin Lepage (52) Chevrolet 14/0 183 0 $16,718 Chart
31 John Jackson (172) Toyota 13/0 178 0 $9,895 Chart
32 Reed Sorenson (32) Chevrolet 12/0 169 0 $16,303 Chart
33 Trevor Bayne (16) Ford 12/1 169 2 $16,443 Chart
34 Dennis Setzer (70) Chevrolet 10/0 104 0 $16,233 Chart
35 Clay Greenfield (171) Ford 9/0 94 0 $9,735 Chart
36 Timmy Hill (15) Ford 8/0 76 0 $9,675 Chart
37 Jeff Green (44) Chevrolet 7/0 17 0 $9,640 Chart
38 Scott Riggs (103) Chevrolet 6/0 15 0 $9,585 Chart
39 Tim Andrews (142) Chevrolet 5/0 10 0 $9,545 Chart
40 Chase Miller (146) Chevrolet 4/0 6 0 $9,480 Chart
41 Carl Long (175) Ford 3/0 6 0 $9,415 Chart
42 Mark Green (49) Chevrolet 2/0 4 0 $9,365 Chart
43 Johnny Chapman (141) Chevrolet 1/0 1 0 $9,286 Chart
 

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Standings
Nationwide Season

Rank (+/-) Drivers Total Pts Behind Starts Poles Wins Top 5 Top 10 DNF Winnings

1 - Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 909 Leader 26 3 2 11 18 2 $828,878
2 - Elliott Sadler 896 13 26 3 0 10 18 0 $688,613
3 - Reed Sorenson 869 40 26 0 1 7 15 2 $702,713
4 - Aric Almirola 845 64 26 1 0 6 15 1 $638,173
5 - Justin Allgaier 840 69 26 0 1 6 13 3 $726,783
6 - Jason Leffler 811 98 26 0 0 2 12 1 $647,248
7 - Kenny Wallace 747 162 26 0 0 0 10 3 $616,178
8 - Steve Wallace 737 172 26 0 0 2 5 4 $593,963
9 - Brian Scott 724 185 26 0 0 0 4 3 $585,673
10 - Michael Annett 711 198 26 0 0 0 6 3 $587,248
11 +1 Mike Bliss 624 285 26 0 0 0 0 3 $566,750
12 -1 Trevor Bayne 611 298 21 0 0 3 9 4 $527,823
13 - Mike Wallace 601 308 26 0 0 1 2 4 $576,828
14 - Joe Nemechek 594 315 23 0 0 1 2 2 $507,339
15 - Josh Wise 583 326 24 0 0 1 3 3 $530,979
16 - Jeremy Clements 515 394 26 0 0 0 0 5 $535,884
17 - Timmy Hill 490 419 25 0 0 0 0 2 $500,067
18 +1 Blake Koch 435 474 24 0 0 0 0 4 $468,630
19 -1 Eric McClure 433 476 26 0 0 0 0 4 $518,701
20 - Derrike Cope 432 477 25 0 0 0 0 6 $504,916
21 - Morgan Shepherd 380 529 26 0 0 0 0 13 $481,864
22 - Scott Wimmer 323 586 19 0 0 0 0 8 $372,766
23 - Ryan Truex 282 627 11 0 0 0 1 1 $235,458
24 - Robert Richardson Jr. 263 646 17 0 0 0 0 6 $334,806
25 +1 Dennis Setzer 218 691 20 0 0 0 0 16 $321,499
26 -1 Sam Hornish Jr. 218 691 8 0 0 0 2 1 $153,558
27 +1 Jennifer Jo Cobb 202 707 18 0 0 0 0 9 $216,280
28 -1 Danica Patrick 198 711 7 0 0 1 3 1 $210,736
29 - Kevin Lepage 194 715 16 0 0 0 0 7 $254,027
30 - Charles Lewandoski 173 736 15 0 0 0 0 7 $216,045
31 - Carl Long 149 760 20 0 0 0 0 19 $251,078
32 - J.R. Fitzpatrick 145 764 7 0 0 1 2 2 $155,641
33 - Danny Efland 144 765 8 0 0 0 0 1 $132,455
34 - Drew Herring 139 770 4 1 0 0 2 0 $84,672
35 - Tim Andrews 124 785 20 0 0 0 0 20 $239,185
36 - Ron Fellows 114 795 3 0 0 1 2 0 $74,093
37 - Mikey Kile 108 801 5 0 0 0 0 1 $92,805
38 - Jeff Green 93 816 23 0 0 0 0 23 $314,959
39 +1 Shelby Howard 84 825 5 0 0 0 0 1 $135,195
40 -1 Tim Schendel 84 825 7 0 0 0 0 5 $89,615
41 - Donnie Neuenberger 74 835 4 0 0 0 0 1 $114,052
42 - Kevin Conway 74 835 6 0 0 0 0 1 $110,898
43 - Alex Kennedy 71 838 5 0 0 0 0 3 $82,206
44 - Mike Harmon 71 838 14 0 0 0 0 13 $161,397
45 +12 Matt Carter 70 839 10 0 0 0 0 9 $129,688
46 -1 Kelly Bires 70 839 7 0 0 0 1 5 $139,830
47 -1 Andrew Ranger 64 845 4 0 0 0 1 3 $56,245
48 -1 Jacques Villeneuve 61 848 2 1 0 1 1 0 $59,361
49 -1 Johnny Chapman 60 849 11 0 0 0 0 11 $118,557
50 -1 Chris Buescher 54 855 2 0 0 0 0 0 $38,786
51 -1 Tim George Jr. 54 855 3 0 0 0 0 1 $40,880
52 +1 Scott Riggs 51 858 5 0 0 0 0 4 $67,078
53 -2 Jason Bowles 49 860 3 0 0 0 0 2 $42,770
54 - Chase Miller 48 861 10 0 0 0 0 10 $112,485
55 -3 Kyle Kelley 48 861 2 0 0 0 0 0 $33,130
56 -1 Danny O'Quinn Jr. 43 866 4 0 0 0 0 2 $59,731
57 -1 Alex Tagliani 43 866 1 0 0 1 1 0 $54,975
58 - Landon Cassill 41 868 1 0 0 1 1 0 $74,875
59 - Scott Speed 39 870 1 0 0 0 1 0 $33,143
60 - Luis Martinez Jr. 38 871 2 0 0 0 0 0 $46,381
61 - Matt Frahm 37 872 2 0 0 0 0 0 $34,081
62 - Angela Cope 35 874 2 0 0 0 0 0 $24,600
63 - Daryl Harr 34 875 3 0 0 0 0 2 $37,950
64 - Mark Green 32 877 6 0 0 0 0 6 $67,340
65 - Fain Skinner 32 877 2 0 0 0 0 0 $33,423
66 - Brett Rowe 28 881 8 0 0 0 0 8 $101,238
67 - Bobby Santos 27 882 1 0 0 0 0 0 $43,310
68 - Joey Gase 24 885 1 0 0 0 0 0 $21,243
69 +13 John Jackson 22 887 4 0 0 0 0 3 $40,780
70 -1 Patrick Sheltra 20 889 1 0 0 0 0 0 $42,385
71 -1 Casey Roderick 19 890 1 0 0 0 0 0 $17,568
72 -1 Benny Gordon 16 893 1 0 0 0 0 0 $16,805
73 -1 Louis-Philippe Dumoulin 16 893 1 0 0 0 0 0 $20,680
74 -3 Doug Harrington 14 895 1 0 0 0 0 1 $11,640
75 -1 Maryeve Dufault 14 895 1 0 0 0 0 0 $26,978
76 +1 David Green 14 895 3 0 0 0 0 3 $37,303
77 - Kevin Swindell 13 896 1 0 0 0 0 1 $18,863
78 -2 Brad Teague 13 896 3 0 0 0 0 3 $40,660
79 -2 Patrick Carpentier 12 897 1 0 0 0 0 1 $20,115
80 - Willie Allen 12 897 2 0 0 0 0 2 $33,478
81 -1 Billy Johnson 11 898 1 0 0 0 0 1 $17,683
82 -1 Will Kimmel 9 900 1 0 0 0 0 1 $16,928
83 - Andy Ponstein 6 903 1 0 0 0 0 1 $11,240
84 - Dan Clarke 5 904 1 0 0 0 0 1 $9,820
85 - D.J. Kennington 4 905 1 0 0 0 0 1 $19,710
86 - Chris Lawson 3 906 1 0 0 0 0 1 $16,775
87 - Kyle Busch 0 909 18 3 7 15 16 2 $628,770
88 - Carl Edwards 0 909 25 6 6 15 19 1 $875,155
89 - Brad Keselowski 0 909 21 2 2 8 14 5 $535,835
90 +2 Joey Logano 0 909 15 1 1 7 11 2 $395,595
91 -5 Marcos Ambrose 0 909 1 0 1 1 1 0 $97,550
92 +2 Mark Martin 0 909 4 0 1 1 3 0 $128,030
93 -5 Denny Hamlin 0 909 3 0 1 2 3 0 $82,200
94 +2 Kurt Busch 0 909 1 1 1 1 1 0 $35,150
95 +2 Matt Kenseth 0 909 1 0 1 1 1 0 $51,800
96 +2 Tony Stewart 0 909 2 0 1 1 1 0 $121,745
97 -26 Todd Bodine 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 0 $49,653
98 - Clay Greenfield 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 1 $9,735
99 +10 T.J. Bell 0 909 2 0 0 0 0 1 $20,190
100 +15 Cole Whitt 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 0 $19,368
101 +11 David Stremme 0 909 7 0 0 0 1 0 $130,725
102 -27 Max Papis 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 0 $19,268
103 -26 Paul Menard 0 909 4 1 0 3 4 0 $100,200
104 +10 Michael Waltrip 0 909 2 0 0 0 1 1 $75,081
105 +15 Amber Cope 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 1 $12,485
106 +12 Tomy Drissi 0 909 2 0 0 0 0 1 $30,420
107 +12 David Mayhew 0 909 1 0 0 0 1 0 $25,543
108 +12 Robby Gordon 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 1 $20,150
109 +11 Boris Said 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 1 $26,393
110 +10 Rick Crawford 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 1 $12,200
111 +9 Jamie McMurray 0 909 3 0 0 0 0 1 $42,575
112 -27 James Hylton 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 1 $10,188
113 +10 Ryan Newman 0 909 1 0 0 1 1 0 $26,175
114 -27 Justin Marks 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 1 $9,715
115 +10 Brian Keselowski 0 909 2 0 0 0 0 2 $27,720
116 -26 Kimi Raikkonen 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 0 $17,698
117 +12 Michael McDowell 0 909 5 1 0 1 4 0 $143,975
118 +9 Kevin Harvick 0 909 11 1 0 5 6 1 $283,065
119 +10 Jimmie Johnson 0 909 1 0 0 1 1 0 $31,475
120 +10 David Starr 0 909 3 0 0 0 0 1 $76,355
121 +10 Kasey Kahne 0 909 9 0 0 4 5 0 $205,700
122 +9 Jeffrey Earnhardt 0 909 2 0 0 0 0 1 $26,245
123 +10 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 0 909 3 0 0 2 3 0 $109,200
124 +10 Clint Bowyer 0 909 6 1 0 2 3 2 $173,315
125 +10 David Reutimann 0 909 6 0 0 1 2 0 $90,925
126 +10 Jamie Dick 0 909 2 0 0 0 0 1 $23,575
127 +11 J.J. Yeley 0 909 5 0 0 0 0 5 $67,220
128 -26 Ricky Carmichael 0 909 2 0 0 0 1 1 $39,306
129 +10 James Buescher 0 909 7 0 0 1 3 1 $163,078
130 -26 Tony Raines 0 909 2 0 0 0 0 1 $26,675
131 -27 Austin Dillon 0 909 4 0 0 1 3 0 $95,122
132 -27 Marc Davis 0 909 1 0 0 0 0 1 $10,026
133 +9 Parker Kligerman 0 909 1 0 0 0 1 0 $25,218

Nationwide Series
Latest Race Sep 3
Great Clips 300
 

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Brad Keselowski fabulous charge etched in pain



8:26 PM EDT, September 3, 2011


ATLANTA — It feels good to be king.

Brad Keselowski may not fit the part, frankly. He's been accused at times of being a super-villain, a dork, a reckless punk who should be parked.

And you can also say this about him:


He's the best driver on the NASCAR circuit right now. Look it up.

Keselowski has won two of the last four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races as the green flag drops in Atlanta tonight for the start of the AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

There was some cause for concern for Keselowski and his Penske Racing crew after engine issues during practice on Friday. Although debris punched a hole in the oil pan of his No. 2 Dodge, Keselowski came back a day later to qualify 14th early Saturday night. Kasey Kahne won the pole, followed by Clint Bowyer.

The starting position certainly won't drop Keselowski from the short list of viable contenders to win tonight.

There's only one more race left before the 12-driver field is set for the NASCAR playoff run, and Keselowski will be among that group. Even if he doesn't make it to the Top 10 level, he is assured of a wild card spot because of his three victories this season.

"He's just riding the wave right now," rival Clint Bowyer said.

"It's just clicked," teammate Kurt Busch said. "It's been great to watch."

The odd thing about Keselowski's consistency is that it's etched in pain. He fractured his ankle after crashing while testing at Road Atlanta on Aug. 3. Keselowski was airlifted to a hospital and treated for his injuries. He then tweeted photos of his injuries — warning fans that these are not for the "squeamish."

Five days later, there was a more enjoyable image for all to see: Keselowski at Victory Lane, celebrating a win at Pocono Raceway despite the pain. That victory set up his incredible run. He has two wins, a second and third in the last four races.

"When you run through a time when you don't have fast race cars it certainly feels good to get in good equipment and get going," Keselowski said. "It's certainly an honor. I wish I could pinpoint what exactly it is. I really think it's the team coming together and clicking as one. I'm proud to be a part of that."

He's also in position tonight to win $3 million dollars split among himself, a fan and a charity of choice as one of the drivers eligible for the Sprint Summer Showdown.

Can it get any better?

"It always does work in cycles," Keselowski cautioned. "You try your best to capitalize when you're on top of the cycle and you try your best to minimize the time you're at the bottom of the cycle. When you have success you can kind of learn what it takes to repeat it and hopefully minimize the bad part of it."

Some rivals (and teammates) say there is more to it than a cosmic cycle. Keselowski has stopped double-dipping in Nationwide races, allowing him to focus on the Cup circuit every weekend. Either way, Keselowski has proven he can run with anybody, regardless of ankle issues.

"When you're in the sweet spot," Jimmie Johnson said, "life is good."

 

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes - NNS Race Final - Atlanta
September 3, 2011 , HAMPTON, Ga
Dodge Motorsports PR

Atlanta Motor Speedway
Great Clips 300
NASCAR Nationwide Series
Final Race Quotes


BRAD KESELOWSKI (No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T): YOU WERE RACING JASON LEFFLER HARD FOR POSITION AT THE END OF THE RACE AND HE SPUN. DID YOU MAKE CONTACT WITH HIM? “No. It looked like he just lost it, I’m not sure. I know I wasn’t anywhere near him. I don’t know what happened to him.”

HOW DID YOU FEEL OUT THERE BACK IN YOUR OLD RIDE? “It felt good to be back out there. Certainly would like to get a little bit better finish. I didn’t quite get it done there at the end of the race. I’ve got no one to blame but myself. Still just need to find a little bit more speed in these cars but there not far off for sure and keep plugging away with it with the Discount Tire team.”

YOU PASSED SEVERAL CARS FOR POSITION NEAR THE END OF THE RACE. WAS THAT THE BEST THE CAR HAD BEEN ALL NIGHT? “Yeah right there at the end it was starting to come alive. It didn’t take off good on the restart but after that it did.”

DID THE TRACK CHANGE DURING THE RACE TONIGHT? “I don’t know [laughs]. I really don’t. Wish I had a better answer for you.”

WHAT DID YOU LEARN TONIGHT THAT YOU CAN APPLY AT TEXAS OR CHARLOTTE? “We’re always learning that’s for sure. Little things about the car and what I need to better and things I could have done better, too.”

TODD GORDON (Crew Chief, No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T): YOU SCORED A SEVENTH-PLACE FINISH BUT ARE YOU GUYS A LITTLE BIT FRUSTRATED? “Obviously with Brad returning you have higher expectations. Just one of those things where it didn’t seem like we got in the right line on restarts. We got choked up, especially that last one. We got stuck with the 66 [Steve Wallace] and he cost us a lot of track position. We finally got by him and just didn’t have enough time to run him back down but Brad was doing a good job of it. We chased the car a little bit tonight. We’ll go to Richmond next week and work on it again.”

BRAD PASSED SEVERAL CARS ON THAT LAST RUN OF THE RACE. WAS THAT THE BEST THAT THE CAR HAD BEEN ALL NIGHT? “After we got clear of the 66 I think we had pretty good speed. Just one of those things where there’s a lot of different levels of talent out here and speed and how you catch ‘em. And that seemed to be something we struggled with tonight was trying to catch people at the right places to not kill your speed. It’s good to have Brad back in the Discount Tire Dodge.”

DO YOU THINK THE TRACK CHANGED A LOT FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE RACE TO THE END? “No I didn’t really feel like the racetrack changed. Right off the bat we struggled with a few things and we kind of felt like we were a little off the whole night. Just didn’t have enough times to make a swing at it to get it where we needed it to be but felt like we were getting there at the end.”

DID YOU LEARN SOMETHING TONIGHT THAT WILL HELP YOU AT THE OTHER INTERMEDIATE TRACKS THIS SEASON? “I tell ya, this place is it’s own creature. As much as they look alike, Atlanta is its own creature. I think we’ll be fine come Texas and Charlotte.”
 

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Rain postpones NASCAR Atlanta race

Rain postpones NASCAR Atlanta race until Tuesday


09/04/2011 10:30 P.M.

HAMPTON, Ga. (AP)—With the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee bearing down on Georgia, NASCAR postponed its race at Atlanta Motor Speedway until 11 a.m. Tuesday.

Officials hoped to get the race in as scheduled Sunday night, but outer bands of the massive storm brought light rain to the track late in the afternoon. Another burst of heavy showers ended any chance of beginning the race before midnight.

“This is one of those deals nobody wins from,” NASCAR president Mike Helton said. “It’s unfortunate it happens from time to time.”

Many of the pre-race festivities went on as scheduled, including driver introductions, the national anthem and a concert by Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Blowers were sent out shortly after the scheduled 7:30 p.m. start time, and NASCAR thought there was about a three-hour window to get in at least a shortened race. Then, with the track nearly dry, a short but heavy dose of rain moved in about 9:30 p.m.

It didn’t even show up on the radar.

“We were probably about 25 to 30 minutes from dropping the green flag,” said Ed Clark, president of Atlanta Motor Speedway. “We don’t know where it came from.”

At that point, it would have taken another three hours to dry the track again—even if the rain held off—and the race wouldn’t have started until after midnight.

“That’s just not fair to the fans,” Clark said.

NASCAR won’t even bother trying to get the race in Monday, considering a forecast that called for 4 to 5 inches of showers and potentially high winds in the afternoon as what was left from the still potent storm moved through the Atlanta area, having dumped more than a foot of rain on the Gulf Coast.

“First and foremost, we had to consider the safety of the fans,” Clark said. “We just thought it was best to step back, get reorganized and put on a great show Tuesday.”

If the weather cooperates, that is.

The Tuesday forecast called for a 70 percent chance of rain.

Weather issues are nothing new at this 1.54-mile track, located about 30 miles south of Atlanta. A spring blizzard forced a 1993 race to be postponed for a week. Since 2000, three races have been bumped back to Monday, and another was shortened because of inclement weather.

The weather had been warm and sunny for the first two days of the weekend. A truck race was run Friday night, and the Nationwide Series was on the track Saturday night.

Then the tropical storm arrived, keeping the Sprint Cup teams in Atlanta for an extra two days. They will now have a very crowded schedule heading into next Saturday’s race at Richmond, the final event before the 10-race Chase for the Sprint Cup championship.

Eight Chase drivers from last season, including five-time defending champion Jimmie Johnson, are scheduled to be at the White House on Wednesday to be honored by President Obama.

“Hopefully everything goes OK Tuesday, and we’ll just be a couple days behind,” Helton said. “We’ll catch up pretty quick.”

NASCAR never considered moving the race to an earlier time, even though it’s known for days that inclement weather was likely Sunday night because of the tropical storm. The governing body said it’s never moved up a starting time, citing television commitments and consideration for fans who travel long distances to attend races.

Helton said there might be a change in the rules to let teams make minor adjustments on the car, which normally isn’t allowed after qualifying. Moving to Tuesday means there will be a three-day gap between time trials and the race, plus it will be held during the day instead of the evening, when track temperatures are cooler.

“They have to determine the fact that they’ve set for a good period of time, not just overnight,” Helton said. “They have to take into consideration the climate changes, including daylight to dark and what weather comes through here and decide what may be able to be done.”

(11:00 A.M EST ESPN?)




 

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NASCAR Results
Last Updated: Tuesday, Sep 6, 2011 3:44 pm, EDT
AdvoCare 500
Status: Final Atlanta Motor Speedway



Order Driver (No.) Car Pts/Bonus Laps Laps Led Winnings Lap Progress

1 Jeff Gordon (24) Chevrolet 48/5 325 146 $329,786 Chart
The win was Gordon's third this season and fifth at Atlanta Motor Speedway. More importantly, it was the 85th of his career, moving him into third on the all-time list behind Richard Petty (200 wins) and David Pearson (105). Until Tuesday afternoon, Gordon was tied for third with Bobby Allison and Darrell Waltrip. By winning at Phoenix early in the season, Gordon joined Cale Yarbrough for fourth all-time. He moved into a tie for third by winning the June race at Pocono Raceway.

Read more: NASCAR: Jeff Gordon holds off Jimmie Johnson to win at Atlanta Motor Speedway - Autoweek



2 Jimmie Johnson (48) Chevrolet 43/1 325 29 $253,761 Chart
3 Tony Stewart (14) Chevrolet 41/0 325 0 $216,208 Chart
4 Kurt Busch (22) Dodge 40/0 325 0 $175,525 Chart
5 Carl Edwards (99) Ford 40/1 325 14 $171,441 Chart
6 Brad Keselowski (2) Dodge 39/1 325 2 $141,933 Chart
7 Kevin Harvick (29) Chevrolet 37/0 325 0 $159,361 Chart
8 Denny Hamlin (11) Toyota 37/1 325 6 $151,550 Chart
9 Matt Kenseth (17) Ford 36/1 325 64 $153,886 Chart
10 A J Allmendinger (43) Ford 34/0 325 0 $141,386 Chart
11 Brian Vickers (83) Toyota 33/0 325 0 $128,714 Chart
12 Greg Biffle (16) Ford 32/0 325 0 $114,925 Chart
13 Jeff Burton (31) Chevrolet 31/0 325 0 $109,925 Chart
14 Martin Truex Jr. (56) Toyota 31/1 325 3 $106,775 Chart
15 Juan Pablo Montoya (42) Chevrolet 29/0 325 0 $136,183 Chart
16 Jamie McMurray (1) Chevrolet 28/0 325 0 $131,589 Chart
17 Mark Martin (5) Chevrolet 27/0 325 0 $104,175 Chart
18 Paul Menard (27) Chevrolet 26/0 325 0 $103,175 Chart
19 Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88) Chevrolet 25/0 325 0 $102,350 Chart
20 Ryan Newman (39) Chevrolet 24/0 325 0 $133,100 Chart
21 Marcos Ambrose (9) Ford 23/0 324 0 $122,741 Chart
22 Landon Cassill (51) Chevrolet 23/1 324 1 $108,333 Chart
23 Kyle Busch (18) Toyota 22/1 324 19 $136,941 Chart
24 Joey Logano (20) Toyota 20/0 324 0 $98,325 Chart
25 J.J. Yeley (55) Ford 20/1 324 15 $104,208 Chart
26 Mike Bliss (32) Ford 18/0 324 0 $100,483 Chart
27 Mike Skinner (60) Chevrolet 18/1 323 2 $98,672 Chart
28 Casey Mears (13) Toyota 16/0 321 0 $87,400 Chart
29 David Starr (195) Ford 15/0 320 0 $84,225 Chart
30 Andy Lally (71) Ford 15/1 319 1 $97,075 Chart
31 David Reutimann (00) Toyota 13/0 315 0 $114,333 Chart
32 Scott Speed (46) Ford 12/0 310 0 $84,750 Chart
33 Regan Smith (78) Chevrolet 11/0 284 0 $109,920 Chart
34 Kasey Kahne (4) Toyota 11/1 269 15 $102,725 Chart
35 David Ragan (6) Ford 9/0 249 0 $92,200 Chart
36 Clint Bowyer (33) Chevrolet 9/1 243 8 $128,258 Chart
37 David Gilliland (34) Ford 7/0 174 0 $82,950 Chart
38 Bobby Labonte (47) Toyota 6/0 91 0 $109,170 Chart
39 Robby Gordon (7) Dodge 5/0 34 0 $82,700 Chart
40 Joe Nemechek (87) Toyota 4/0 27 0 $82,550 Chart
41 Michael McDowell (66) Toyota 3/0 23 0 $82,375 Chart
42 Travis Kvapil (38) Ford 2/0 17 0 $82,280 Chart
43 Dave Blaney (36) Chevrolet 1/0 2 0 $82,641 Chart
 

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Kurt Busch (fourth) & Brad Keselowski (sixth) clinched Chase berths heading into Saturday's regular-season finale at Richmond.

Kurt Busch (fourth), Ryan Newman (20th) and Brad Keselowski (sixth) clinched Chase berths heading into Saturday's regular-season finale at Richmond.

"It was a Chase-type effort," Busch said. "We surprised ourselves with good adjustments (and) solid pit stops. I can't have people stop talking about (Richmond). Maybe we can go there and bounce back and get that behind us." Busch is referring to a vulgarity-laced tirade on his radio during the race in May in which he infamously referenced a monkey and a football."

Said Penske Racing teammate Keselowski: "Today was a huge confidence booster. We took a bad day and got as much as we could out of it."

 

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Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes – Final Race Quotes – Atlanta
Published on September 6, 2011 by Official Release

Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2011

Atlanta Motor Speedway

AdvoCare 500

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

Final Race Quotes


STEVE ADDINGTON (crew chief, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T) CONGRATULATIONS ON MAKING THE CHASE? “It feels great. Our first year with Shell/Pennzoil and get in the Chase. It’s just a great effort by everyone that puts a hand on these race cars. I want to thank everyone back at Penske Racing who helps with these race cars that work behind the scenes and don’t come to the race track. They work their butts off to put us in this position.”

HOW MUCH DID THIS RACE TRACK CHANGE SINCE WHEN YOU WERE ON IT ON SATURDAY? “It was unbelievable. The change the track went through today was incredible. How the car changed and the phases that it went through was really incredible. We just kept working on it trying to make it better as the race went on. I think that our race car got pretty good after the halfway point of the race. I have to thank everybody that supports us. Dodge gives us incredible support and everything that we ask out of them. We really appreciate those guys doing all the work behind the scenes and working with our engineering group to give us what we need to go racing. A great effort by everyone involved.”

KURT BUSCH (No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T) “A great day for Penske and the Shell/Pennzoil Dodge team today. It was a great run, a Chase-type effort. To come home fourth, Tony (Stewart) was coming out of nowhere. We somewhat surprised ourselves. We made great adjustments as the race went on. Good adjustments during the race and solid a pit stops during the race. A great run for our Shell/Pennzoil Dodge. It’s great to be locked into the Chase. Just all of our sponsors, AAA, Lennox, Snap-On, and Coca-Cola. A good, solid season. Now it’s go time. We’ve got Richmond as a buffer, but we’ve got 10 weeks ahead of us that are the most important 10 weeks of the season.”

NOW THAT YOU’RE LOCKED IN, WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS? “Richmond was fun race last May, it was well documented. I can’t have people not stop talking about it. Maybe we can bounce back and get that behind us and go and attack Chicago, one of my favorite race tracks, and go and get in the groove of the Chase. Every position counts. Everyone needs to click on all eight cylinders on our team. Just our Dodge’s right now, Keselowski’s in. We’re in. We’re a two-team effort for our Dodge’s and here we are with our Dodge Chargers running with the big boys. We’re right in this mix. I feel really proud of my guys today.”

BRAD KESELOWSKI (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T): “We were just a little off all weekend. The run next to last I felt like we were close. We were a second or third-place car there and just kind of got stuck behind some track position. I think we were running fourth or fifth and got back off on the last pit stop. All in all it’s good to come out of a race where we felt like we were off all weekend and get a sixth out of it, that’s what we need to do. That’s what we need to do going into the Chase, bring home cars without scratches on ‘em and get solid finishes when we’re not at our best. I’m proud of my guys and everyone on the Miller Lite Dodge team.”

A COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO YOU GUYS WERE TRYING TO BE A TOP 15 TEAM EACH WEEK. NOW ALL OF A SUDDEN YOU’RE A CHASE CHAMPTIONSHIP CONTENDER. HOW CONFIDENT ARE YOU THAT YOU CAN WIN THE CHAMPIONSHIP? “Well today was a huge confidence booster because we took a bad day and got a good finish out of it. That’s exactly what you’ve got to do in the Chase and today was a huge confidence booster, as big as any of the other races.”

YOU HAD A SOLID RUN TODAY. “Yeah we were just a little bit off all day. It seemed like we got really close the next to last run and drove up to fourth there and then that last run got back off and ended up sixth. It was just really good to have solid finish like we did in sixth. I wanted another top-five and it would have been great but I’m just really proud of my guys.”

DO YOU FEEL REALLY GOOD ABOUT YOUR CHASE CHANCES TODAY? “Yeah really good. I think this locked us in today. We’ve got something to look forward to. I think days like today are what you’ve got to have. You’ve got to have days where [when] you’re not as fast as you want to be and you’re off all weekend but you still get a solid finish out of it. It’s going to be weekends like this, like we had today with the 2 team, that make our break you in the Chase. That’s a good feeling.”

CAN YOU PUT INTO PERSPECTIVE WHAT THIS MEANS TO YOU AND YOUR CAREER TO HAVE A CHANCE TO WIN THE CHAMPIONSHIP? “It’s amazing. I was thinking about it this week. I’ve lived my whole life wanting to have a shot at a Cup championship and here I am. I’ve got a legitimate shot at it. I’ve got a team that’s firing on all eight, so to speak, and now a Chase birth here today. It’s a very amazing feeling. Just want to make sure that I’m ready to go for that Chase. We felt confident about it [clinching a spot in the Chase] but still you can blow up our first lap the next two races or do something dumb and put it in the fence. The actual clinch is still a good feeling.”

WHEN DID YOU KNOW THAT YOU WERE CHASE MATERIAL? “You know it’s hard to say. I felt like we had strong runs that we just weren’t able to execute. It’s got to be the last few weeks. I’d hate to say it’s been anywhere than that.”

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE ABLE TO USE YOUR BONUS POINTS IN THE CHASE? YOU HAVE A CHANCE TO PUT YOURSELF IN EVEN BETTER POSITION. “I think we’ve got to make up 23 points on the 14 [Tony Stewart]. I haven’t seen where the 88 is in points. I’m sure we gained a bunch on him because I don’t see him on the board so it’ll be interesting. It’s going to be tough on us. We’re still 20-some points back but we’ll just have to see how Richmond plays out. Richmond was not very kind to us in the spring. But a lot of these tracks we’ve been successful at we’ve been successful because we’re going back to ‘em for the second time. And we’re coming back to Richmond for the second time so I have a fair amount of confidence going there.”

HOW DIFFICULT WAS THIS RACE FOR YOU TODAY? “The starting and stopping makes it hell on everybody and it’s no different in the seat. You just want to go, like c’mon, make this thing happen. There were a couple of times I was ready to race in the rain just to get going. That’s the way it is but glad that we’re all able to survive out a long week. Really happy and proud to get this race done for all the work everybody has put in from the track to the teams to the fans that came back.”

DESPITE THE CHALLENGING CONDITIONS YOU MADE YOUR CAR BETTER DURING THE RACE. “We did a great job all up until the last stop. We were backwards on the last stop. Like I said that’s what you’ve got to do to be a Chase caliber team or at least a championship contending team in the Chase. You’ve got to take your days when you’re a 10th to 15th-place car, made good adjustments and get solid finishes. We still ended up sixth but that’s not a bad day.”
 

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Standings
Sprint Cup Season


Rank (+/-) Drivers Total Pts Behind Starts Poles Wins Top 5 Top 10 DNF Winnings

1 +1 Jimmie Johnson 873 Leader 25 1 1 11 17 1 $4,536,088
2 -1 Kyle Busch 852 21 25 2 4 13 15 3 $4,759,313
3 +1 Carl Edwards 835 38 25 2 1 11 16 0 $6,314,888
4 -1 Matt Kenseth 834 39 25 1 2 7 14 2 $4,454,188
5 - Jeff Gordon 830 43 25 1 3 9 13 2 $4,404,888
6 - Kevin Harvick 819 54 25 0 3 6 12 1 $4,450,198
7 +1 Kurt Busch 789 84 25 3 1 6 13 2 $4,437,926
8 -1 Ryan Newman 786 87 25 2 1 8 12 0 $3,909,548
9 - Dale Earnhardt Jr. 753 120 25 1 0 3 9 2 $3,077,163
10 - Tony Stewart 751 122 25 0 0 3 10 1 $4,040,258
wc 11 - Brad Keselowski 728 145 25 1 3 6 10 1 $3,702,581
wc 12 +1 Denny Hamlin 709 164 25 0 1 4 9 2 $3,982,443


13 +1 A J Allmendinger 698 175 25 0 0 1 6 1 $3,457,343
14 -2 Clint Bowyer 697 176 25 0 0 3 9 5 $4,039,413
15 +1 Greg Biffle 681 192 25 1 0 1 7 1 $3,105,953
16 +1 Martin Truex Jr. 676 197 25 0 0 2 8 3 $2,842,163
17 -2 Kasey Kahne 667 206 25 2 0 3 8 3 $3,189,637
18 - Joey Logano 662 211 25 2 0 4 6 1 $2,898,688
19 - Mark Martin 660 213 25 1 0 2 7 3 $2,846,083
20 - Paul Menard 657 216 25 0 1 4 7 2 $2,872,388
21 +1 Marcos Ambrose 650 223 25 0 1 4 8 0 $3,464,763
22 +1 Juan Pablo Montoya 650 223 25 2 0 2 7 0 $3,717,288
23 -2 David Ragan 637 236 25 2 1 3 6 4 $3,170,638
24 - Jeff Burton 603 270 25 0 0 0 1 3 $2,683,126
25 +1 Jamie McMurray 579 294 25 1 0 2 4 3 $3,544,938
26 -1 Regan Smith 563 310 25 0 1 2 4 2 $3,423,438
27 - Brian Vickers 560 313 25 0 0 1 5 1 $3,078,598
28 - David Reutimann 538 335 25 0 0 1 2 2 $3,192,228
29 - Bobby Labonte 515 358 25 0 0 1 2 3 $3,378,058
30 - David Gilliland 429 444 25 0 0 1 2 5 $3,016,802
31 - Casey Mears 360 513 24 0 0 0 0 5 $2,001,258
32 - Dave Blaney 324 549 24 0 0 0 0 6 $2,300,575
33 - Andy Lally 321 552 22 0 0 0 0 1 $2,197,968
34 - Robby Gordon 229 644 19 0 0 0 0 8 $1,854,766
35 - Tony Raines 129 744 12 0 0 0 0 5 $932,125
36 +4 J.J. Yeley 101 772 20 0 0 0 0 18 $1,713,727
37 -1 Bill Elliott 100 773 5 0 0 0 0 0 $663,887
38 -1 Terry Labonte 92 781 7 0 0 0 0 3 $882,627
39 -1 Ken Schrader 87 786 6 0 0 0 0 0 $516,432
40 -1 Michael McDowell 86 787 21 0 0 0 0 19 $1,642,080
41 - David Stremme 49 824 10 0 0 0 0 8 $759,820
42 - Boris Said 38 835 2 0 0 0 0 0 $194,730
43 - Michael Waltrip 20 853 2 0 0 0 0 1 $396,213
44 - Andy Pilgrim 18 855 1 0 0 0 0 0 $78,475
45 - Chris Cook 17 856 1 0 0 0 0 0 $78,825
46 - T.J. Bell 14 859 4 0 0 0 0 4 $355,750
47 - Brian Simo 11 862 1 0 0 0 0 0 $74,470
48 - Geoffrey Bodine 6 867 1 0 0 0 0 1 $84,300
49 - Brian Keselowski 3 870 1 0 0 0 0 1 $297,338
50 - Erik Darnell 2 871 2 0 0 0 0 2 $133,615
51 - Steve Park 2 871 1 0 0 0 0 1 $78,855

Sprint Cup Series
Latest Race Sep 6
AdvoCare 500
 
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