R. Mark Stiles

R. Mark Stiles

Contact: email author

From the Great Bridge section of Chesapeake, Virginia, R. Mark Stiles, the owner, news director & editor in chief of Catchfence,™ has been dedicated to auto racing news media coverage, journalism and reporting for almost 17-years. Stiles started in the industry in the fall of 1997 with two columns (Green Flag Black Flag and Breaking Loose) for AOL/Athlete Direct's NASCAR department (ADNASCAR). He later merged Green Flag Black Flag and became the news director with Ryan Seek's CatchFence in 1999. At the beginning of 2001, Stiles went full-time with Catchfence, served as an assistant to the now retired Voice of Daytona Int'l Speedway chief track announcer, Bill Bowser, and In 2005 he acquired full ownership of Catchfence.

Apr 22

Denny Hamlin 2015 NSCS Toyota Owners 400 Race Preview

Filed under Sprint Cup Series

NASCAR Driver Denny Hamlin (FedEx Ground) - Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images
NASCAR Driver Denny Hamlin (FedEx Ground) - Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images
Denny Hamlin
#11 FedEx Ground Toyota
Joe Gibbs Racing

Race Info:

Race: Toyota Owners 400
Date/Time: April 25/7:00 p.m. ET
Distance: 400 laps/300 miles
Track Length: 0.750-mile
Track Shape: Oval
Banking: 14 degrees
2014 Winner: Joey Logano

Express Notes:

Return to Roots:  Denny Hamlin will be joined by NASCAR regulars and local Virginia drivers in Thursday night’s Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown presented by FedEx, a charity Late Model race at South Boston (Va.) Speedway. The event, in its eighth year, is a 200-lap feature race pitting Hamlin, Joe Gibbs Racing teammate David Ragan, reigning Xfinity Series champion Chase Elliott, and other NASCAR drivers against the best short track competitors in the region, and benefits the Denny Hamlin Foundation which raises awareness and resources for Cystic Fibrosis research. The event has raised more than $150,000 in the last three years for charity, and this year’s race will be broadcast tape delayed on NBC Sports Network. Matt Bowling is the defending race winner.

Richmond Preview: Hamlin will return to the cockpit of the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota in Saturday night’s Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway. Following neck spasms that forced him out of the car after 22 laps Sunday at Bristol, Hamlin will compete at his hometown track this weekend. The Chesterfield, Va., native is a two-time Richmond winner, capturing the checkered flag in back to back fall races at the track in 2009 and 2010. In 17 starts at the three-quarter-mile facility, Hamlin has recorded nine top-10 finishes and has led 1,390 laps. He also owns a pair of poles at Richmond, in 2006 and 2008. He has completed 6,802 of 6,810 (99.9%) of possible laps at Richmond in his career. Hamlin will also compete in Friday night’s Xfinity Series race in the #20 Joe Gibbs Racing entry.

Hamlin Statistics:

Track: Richmond International Raceway

Races: 17
Wins: 2
Top-5: 7
Top-10: 9
Average Start: 10.5
Average Finish: 10.4
Laps Led: 1,390

Hamlin Conversation — RICHMOND:

How are you feeling after the injury on Sunday and what is your outlook heading into Richmond?

“Obviously, getting out of the car on Sunday was a very tough decision, and Erik (Jones, replacement driver) did an admirable job under difficult circumstances. After treatment this week, I feel close to 100 percent, and I’m confident that I’ll be good to go this weekend in Richmond. It’s a great track for our team, and one that means a lot to me personally. Hopefully we can go out there and compete for the win on Saturday night.”

How important is it for you to showcase local racers with Thursday’s Short Track Showdown?

“The Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown has become a great event to highlight grassroots racers that are doing exactly what I did while coming through the ranks. We have raised a lot of money for the Denny Hamlin Foundation and cystic fibrosis research over the years, and certainly could not do the race without our sponsors. FedEx has been a huge supporter of the Foundation since the beginning in 2008, and they are a big part of the race again this year. With NBC Sports Network coming on board this year, we’ll be able to show this great event to a national audience.”

Provincial District Along for the Ride in Richmond: The FedEx Ground Provincial district will be recognized with its “PRVC” code letters on the b-post of the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota this weekend at Richmond. The district extends from Montreal to Vancouver, Canada,

FedEx Office – Closest to Richmond International Raceway: 1111 E. Main St., Richmond, VA 23219, (804) 783-9880

Feb. 22 Daytona 500 Daytona 42 4 203/203 Running $680,483 4 4th
March 1 Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 Atlanta 4 38 284/325 Running $111,105 14 19th
March 8 Kobalt 400 Las Vegas 19 5 267/267 Running $162,380 8th
March 15 Camping World 500 Phoenix 25 23 312/312 Running $92,855 13th
March 22 Auto Club 400 Fontana 6 28 209/209 Running $106.485 56 14th
March 29 STP 500 Martinsville 15 1 500/500 Running $172,260 91 7th
April 11 Duck Commander 500 Texas 18 11 334/334 Running $146,525 8th
April 19 Food City 500 Bristol* 5 26 505/511 Running $109,200 11th
Averages/Totals 18.4 15.7 98.1%   $1,472,093 165    

* Drivers: Denny Hamlin and Erik Jones

#11 FedEx Racing – 2015 Crew Roster

Crew Chief – Dave Rogers
Car Chief – Joe Fiorelli
Engineers – Chris Gabehart, Kenny Oates
Shock Specialist – Ron Denton
Tire Specialist – Jamie Turski
Mechanics – Joey Forgette, Jerad Hewitt, Jason Clements
Spotter – Chris Lambert
Front Tire Changer: Dustin Necaise
Front Tire Carrier: Brandon Pegram
Rear Tire Changer: Mike Hicks
Rear Tire Carrier: Heath Cherry
Jack Man: Nate Bolling
Gas Man: Caleb Hurd
Pit Crew Coordinator: Paul Alepa
Athletic Director: Mike Lepp
Transportation – Bob Hannigan, Kyle Bazzell

Source: Weber Shandwick Worldwide for FedEx Racing

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