Team Chevy 2012 NSCS Finger Lakes 355 Race PreviewPress Release
TEAM CHEVY ADVANCE
FINGER LAKE 355 AT THE GLEN
WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL
WATKINS GLEN, NEW YORK
AUGUST 12, 2012
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CHEVY RACING WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL – JEFF CHEW, MARKETING MANAGER – CHEVROLET RACING: “We’re looking forward to this weekend’s race at Watkins Glen International. This is a unique track that provides great road course racing for our Team Chevy fans. For the fans this week the Team Chevy stage will feature an appearance from Team Chevy driver Ryan Newman on Sunday. Fans can also spend time with one of our friendly product specialists and learn more about Chevy’s great vehicle lineup, and compete with other fans on our video race simulators. Also on display are Chevrolet Performance Parts crate engines and an assortment of accessories and performance parts for fans to purchase from their local Chevy dealer. We hope to see you there.”
TEAM CHEVY SOCIAL MEDIA: Follow Team Chevy on Facebook and @TeamChevy on Twitter to receive the latest news as well as updates with times and locations of events
TEAM CHEVY FOR THE FANS AT WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL:
- · Fans can visit the Team Chevy Racing Display in the Watkins Glen International Fan Midway area
- · Fans can check out great Chevrolet vehicles including: Malibu ECO, Sonic, Cruze ECO, Equinox, Silverado, Camaro Convertible, Volt and Traverse
- · At the display fans can see a variety of show cars including: No. 88, 14 and 29 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series cars as well as the No. 57 Grand-Am GT.R Camaro
- · Also on display is a Chevrolet R07 racing engine complete with electronic fuel injection that will power all of our NASCAR Sprint Cup series Team Chevy drivers in 2012. Fans can also see a sample of engines, parts and accessories available for purchase from Chevrolet at their local Chevrolet dealer
- · Other activities at the Team Chevy Racing Display include a variety of interactive games for adults and kids
DRIVER FAN Q/A APPEARANCES:
- · Sunday August 12th – Ryan Newman will visit the Team Chevy stage at 10:00 a.m.
- · Hours of operation: Fri. Aug. 10th – 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.; Sat. Aug. 11th – 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. and Sun. Aug. 12th – 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
TEAM CHEVY IN NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES (NSCS) COMPETITION:
- · Chevrolet has won 35 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) Manufacturers’ Championships
- · Team Chevy drivers have scored 698 wins and 625 poles in NSCS competition
CHEVROLET ON THE TRACK—WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL:
- · Chevrolet drivers have won 16 of 29 races at Watkins Glen International. Wins by active drivers are:
o Tony Stewart, No. 14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet, has five (5) victories at Watkins Glen International (’02, ’04, ’05, ’07 &’09)
o Jeff Gordon, No. 24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet, has four (4) wins at The Glen (’97, ’98,’99 & ‘01)
o Kevin Harvick, No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet, has visited victory lane at The Glen once (’06)
o Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet, has one win at Watkins Glen International (’10)
- · A Chevrolet driver has won seven (7) of the last 10 races at Watkins Glen International
- · A Chevrolet driver has sat on the pole at The Glen 11 times
- · Team Chevy drivers have scored 52 top-five and 105 top-10 finishes at Watkins Glen International
- · A Chevrolet has led 1,242 laps (49.1% of possible 2,528 laps) at Watkins Glen International
TEAM CHEVY IN THE GARAGE WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL– ALBA COLON – PROGRAM MANAGER, NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES – CHEVROLET RACING:
“First of all, Congratulations to Jeff Gordon, Alan Gustafson, Rick Hendrick and all the No. 24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet team members for winning their first point’s race of the year last Sunday at Pocono. With this win, they are getting closer to securing a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Now more than ever; and with just five races to go before the Chase gets underway, every win and every spot at the end of each race counts. It is exciting to watch and to see how it all unfolds.
“This weekend we are heading to one of my most beloved tracks, Watkins Glen International. We always enjoy coming to this track. This is the second and the last of the two road course races on the annual NASCAR Sprint Cup tour, and the racing is always fast and exciting.
“The two road courses, Watkins Glen International and Sonoma, each offer their own unique set of challenges. One of the biggest differences between Sonoma and The Glen is the speed. The cars go much faster at Watkins Glen, the track is wider, and it has more places to pass. It also has longer straightaways and lower corners compared to the Sonoma track.
“Those extra passing areas take some of the pressure away from the importance of track position early in the race. But depending on how the cautions fall, teams still need to be ready to use pit strategy and be able to maximize fuel economy to ensure a good finish.
“The Glen has been a good track for our Chevy teams, and we are looking forward to continuing that tradition on Sunday!!
TEAM CHEVY FROM THE DRIVER’S SEAT:
DALE EARNHARDT, JR., NO. 88 NATIONAL GUARD/DIET MOUNTAIN DEW CHEVROLET – LEADS STANDINGS:
“With me and a road course, it’s a lottery. I’ve had some good runs at Watkins Glen and had some fast cars there. When we went there in 2008 with Tony (Eury) Jr., we rained out qualifying so we started up front and we led quite a good portion. We were really fast. I know I can go around there. It’s just straightaway, turn, straightaway, turn, and that’s really what I’ve been doing all my life. It’s a lot easier than Sonoma, a lot less technical. We showed up at the Road Atlanta test last week with the same problems as Sonoma and the same disappointment with the car. Then we made a lot of changes and a few of the changes in particular revolutionized the way the car drove and the way it felt. The stop watch was way faster so I’m excited. I’ve been real happy to go to all the racetracks this year. I particularly don’t look forward to going to Sonoma and Watkins Glen as much as I do the ovals, but I’m excited about Watkins Glen this trip. Hopefully we can go there and be competitive.”
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S CORTEZ SILVER CHEVROLET – 4th IN STANDINGS:
“The thing that gets me at The Glen so much is really fuel mileage. My driving style requires us to stop usually an additional time and I don’t know how to run a fast enough pace and save fuel at the same time there. It really gets me. I think back to a Nationwide race where I was driving Junior’s car and ran out (of fuel) with a few laps to go. It just happens to me there more than really anywhere. So, I’m hopeful that the EFI and the functionality of the EFI will help me there. And we’re working hard. We tested two days ago I guess it was, getting ready for The Glen. So, we’re putting in the whole effort. Hopefully I can be nice on the fuel mileage.”
TONY STEWART, NO. 14 OFFICE DEPOT/MOBIL 1 CHEVROLET – 6th IN STANDINGS:
“It’s a race that we always look forward to. We’ve had a lot of success there and it’s just fun. It’s like taking Sonoma and just multiplying the speed times three. It’s just a lot faster track. It still has the same elevation changes, but you’re just running a lot quicker. Both Sonoma and Watkins Glen are two places on the schedule that we really enjoy coming to.
“When you’ve won five races, it gives you that confidence that you know how to win, and know what you have to do to get to victory lane. I know what feel I need when we get here. It’s just a matter of going out and practicing and putting yourself in that position.”
KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 29 BUDWEISER CHEVROLET – 9th IN STANDINGS:
”Watkins Glen (International) is really fast, so the biggest thing there is to get your car good under braking so you can make passes during the race. Usually you can gain the most time is in the braking zones.”
KASEY KAHNE, NO. 5 FARMERS INSURANCE CHEVROLET – 11th IN STANDINGS:
“The toughest part of Watkins Glen for me is braking. You get on the brakes a lot harder than at Sonoma. But we’ve done a lot of road course testing this year, and that’s something I’ve worked on. Hopefully that extra practice will help this week.”
JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 DRIVE TO END HUNGER CHEVROLET – 13th IN STANDINGS:
“(The Pocono win) only puts more pressure on us over these next several weeks, but we’re ready for the challenge. With all we’ve been through this year and this team staying together while not pointing fingers, we knew if we could get to Victory Lane it would make us stronger. We’ve put together a string of good runs and finishes, but we have to keep fighting for wins. I don’t know if one win will be good enough to secure a wildcard spot.
“We’ve not run very well at Watkins Glen in recent years and it’s been very disappointing to me and the team, but I’m optimistic because I felt we made big improvements at Sonoma. We tested at Road Atlanta before that race, and I think it’s a better track for Watkins Glen than it is for Sonoma. But we won’t really know until we get on the track. I always love the road courses and Watkins Glen is always one of my favorites. It’s a fast road course and you’ve got to have grip and comfort in that car through the esses and the high speed corners. You’ve got to attack the race track in the braking zones, and the car has got to be there for you and stick. Recently, though, I just feel like we’ve been missing a little something here.”
RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 39 U.S. ARMY CHEVROLET – 14th IN STANDINGS:
“I like road courses. They are difficult to pass on. It seems like there are only a couple of passing zones. I’ve always said the more corners there are without passing zones, the more opportunities there are to fall behind the guy who’s in front of the guy who’s in front of you. Road courses are unique in their own right. I wish we had a third one because I think they’re fun. To me, Watkins Glen provides better racing than Sonoma and I personally enjoy it a bit more. I really enjoy the challenge, the hustle of the racecar, the heavy braking. It’s not the easiest place to pass. Everybody kind of knows that. It’s a track-position race and fuel mileage has become a big part of the racing there. It’s usually a two-stop fuel race. You don’t get a lot of chances to work on your racecar, similar to places like Loudon and Richmond. To me, it’s just fun to hustle those cars around the racetrack. In road-course racing, the driver, in my mind, can make up more than he can at an oval just being able to hustle a car. You have the added mannerism; I guess you could say, of braking. When you brake at short tracks, it’s not the same as when you brake and downshift. So, you have to be a smooth downshifter, you have to be a good braker. Obviously, you have to turn right. There are extra characteristics, I guess, that you have to include at road courses that you don’t have to include at ovals. That separates the men from the boys, typically. We look forward to going there and doing well.”
PAUL MENARD, NO. 27 MENARDS/RHEEM CHEVROLET – 16th IN STANDINGS:
“The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is the most competitive series in the world and we race the same guys every weekend. We’ve had some of the best (road course drivers) in the world like Boris Said and Ron Fellows struggle at Watkins Glen (International). Last year we were actually in position to gain a lot of points for the Wild Card position in the Chase (for the NASCAR Sprint Cup) and we blew a left-front tire with a couple laps to go. Little things like that ruin your finish.”
JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 MCDONALD’S CHEVROLET – 19th IN STANDINGS:
“I enjoy running the road course, at Watkins Glen. It’s fun to do something a little bit different than the usual, all left-hand turns. This track is really fast and allows you a few more opportunities to pass versus Sonoma. One of my favorite parts is If you can manage to get up the hill through the esses real well it gives you a good opportunity down the backstretch to set up passing into the inner loop. Hopefully we can put our McDonald’s Chevrolet in position for a run at the front of the field this weekend.”
JEFF BURTON, NO. 31 CATERPILLAR CHEVROLET – 20th IN STANDINGS:
“I like Watkins Glen (International) a lot. Overall, I like road-course racing. The only thing I don’t like about road racing is getting knocked out. That seems to happen often. We were able to avoid it Sonoma. Unfortunately, we had an issue where Dale (Earnhardt Jr.) and I got together, but it was one of those things where neither one of us really did anything wrong. It was just a product of having 43 cars go into a corner that is a 90-degree turn. Some of it can’t be avoided and that’s what is difficult. Some of it is people just not caring who they run into, but some of it is people trying to avoid it. I think when these road-course racers join the field for these races; they are surprised how good we are it. What we lack in road-course racing experience, we make up for it by knowing how to handle these race cars. There is no car in the world like these Sprint Cup Series cars. These cars are animals. I’m not saying we are the best drivers in the world. It takes a different skill set to drive these cars. They aren’t point-and-shoot race cars.”
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET – 21st IN STANDINGS:
“I think Watkins Glen is a driver’s track, you’ve really got to hustle the car, and you can make a bit of a difference by doing so. We’ve always had a pretty good car there. I think the worse we’ve ever run is fourth or fifth so hopefully we’ll have a good day. There are a lot of places you can pass there, like into one, into the bus stop. You’ve got three of four good places where you can overtake. That’s one of those places that it’s a shame that we don’t use the full course because what they call ‘the boot’ is a lot of fun.”
REGAN SMITH, NO. 78 FURNITURE ROW/FARM AMERICAN CHEVROLET – 24th IN STANDINGS:
“The way we’ve raced the past two weekends at Indy and Pocono is the way we should be racing — inside or close to the top-10. There’s plenty of enthusiasm in the Furniture Row camp due to our recent performances. Todd (Berrier, crew chief) came on board before Indy and has done an excellent job in a short time. You can sense that our Furniture Row/Farm American Chevrolet is only going to get better. This weekend at Watkins Glen is special for me. I consider it my home track since I grew up near Syracuse (Cato, N.Y.). I really enjoy road racing and with all the friends and family who will be at Watkins Glen I want nothing more than to bring home a strong finish.”
KURT BUSCH, NO. 51 PHOENIX CONSTRUCTION SERVICES INC. CHEVROLET – 25th IN STANDINGS:
“Well, Sonoma is a track where the corners are a lot slower and you’re struggling to put the power down. It’s pretty much the opposite of that situation when racing at Watkins Glen. It’s still a road course but the differences are pretty big. Watkins Glen has wide, sweeping, fast corners where it’s not as tough to put the power down like it is at Sonoma. It’s also just more of a momentum race track and so there’s a lot of speed at Watkins Glen, versus the finesse that you have to have at Sonoma to be successful.”
Chevrolet NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Statistics
Total (1949 – 2011): 35
First title for Chevrolet: 1958
Highest number of consecutive titles: 9 twice (1983 – 1991) (2003-2011)
Years Won: 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011
Total (1949 – 2011): 28
First Chevrolet champion: Buck Baker (1957)
Highest number of consecutive titles: 7 (2005 – ’11)
Years Won: 1957, 1960, 1961, 1973, 1976, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011
Record for total race wins in single season: 26 – (in 2007)
Laps led: 2436
Top-five finishes: 47
Top-10 finishes: 93
CHEVROLET IN NASCAR SPRINT CUP CUMULATIVE STATISTICS:
Total Chevrolet race wins: 698 (1949 – to date); (2,339 possible = 29.8%)
Poles Won to Date: 625
Laps Lead to Date: 207, 538
Top-Five Finishes to Date: 3,494
Top-10 Finishes to Date: 7,143
Total NASCAR Cup wins by Corporation, 1949 – To-Date
Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world’s largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries and selling more than 4 million cars and trucks a year. Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that feature spirited performance, expressive design and high quality. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at www.chevrolet.com.
Source: Team Chevy, Press Release
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