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Nov 14, 2012 - 05:15 PM
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2012 Homestead: Paul Menard NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on Nov 14, 2012 - 05:10 PM
2012 Homestead: Paul Menard NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview

This Week's Duracell/Menards Chevrolet at Homestead-Miami Speedway ... Paul Menard will pilot Chassis No. 379 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable in this weekend's Homestead 400. This Chevrolet was last raced at Dover International Speedway in September where the Eau Clair, Wis., native finished 22nd. It was also utilized earlier this season at Pocono Raceway in August, where he started third and finished 11th, Charlotte Motor Speedway (May) in the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race where Menard finished 16th, Kansas Speedway where he finished 18th and Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March where he finished seventh.


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Homestead Tidbits ... In his six previous starts at the 1.5-mile oval race track, Menard has completed 99.6 percent of his laps (1,597 of 1,603) and has led for one circuit. He has an average starting position of 29.7 and an average finishing position of 23.8, with his best result of 16th coming in the 2011 season finale. Menard earned his best start at the Homestead, Fla.-based facility in November 2010 when took the green flag in the 16th position.

By the Numbers in 2012 ... With 35 points-paying events of the 2012 season complete, Menard sits 16th in the Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standings on the merit of one top-five and nine top-10 finishes. In his sophomore season with RCR, Menard has an average starting position of 16.1, an average finishing position of 15.6, maintains an Average Running Position of 17.397 and has completed 99.6 percent of his laps (10,139 of 10,175), leading all drivers in total laps completed.

Race Rewind to 2011 ... Menard recorded his best finish at Homestead-Miami Speedway taking the checkered flag in the 16th position in the 2011 Sprint Cup Series finale after starting from the 19th spot and enduring a series of rain showers and a persistent tight-handling condition.

About Duracell ... Part of the Procter & Gamble Company, Duracell has been powering people around the world for more than 40 years as the brand that was, and is, trusted everywhere. Their products serve as the heart of devices that keep people connected, protect their families, entertain them and simplify their increasingly mobile lifestyles. As the world's leading manufacturer of high-performance alkaline batteries, Duracell also innovates in lighting, renewable power and wireless charging technologies to help consumers live life without limits. Visit duracell.com for more information, follow on Twitter.com/Duracell, and "like" Duracell on Facebook.com/Duracell.

In the Rearview Mirror: Phoenix International Raceway ... Menard started the 35th points-paying Sprint Cup Series event of the 2012 season from the seventh position and drove the No. 27 Rheem/Menards Chevrolet to a ninth-place finish in the AdvoCare 500 at Phoenix International Raceway despite being collected in a multi-car accident as the neon yellow machine took the checkered flag.

As we head to Miami-Homestead Speedway for the last race of the 2012 season, has the year gone fast or slow for you?
"Every year I get older and the years go by quicker. That's just the way it is, so I'm told. This year went by faster than last year, and I'm sure next year will go by even quicker."

Are you happy that this season is coming to an end?
"It's always bittersweet when the season ends. I feel like we have a lot left to accomplish, but it will be nice to have a restart for next year, too."

Last year you earned your best finish to date at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Are you more comfortable there now?
"Every week is different in this sport. We could run really well or really bad, it just depends on the week. We just need to do all the preparation and hope for a good run."

Talk about the challenges and the progressive banking at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
"Homestead (-Miami Speedway) is a wide track and has a lot of different grooves that you can run, which is neat for a driver. Other than that, it's kind of a boring race track to be honest."

Going into last year's finale, everyone was aware of the battle between Carl Edwards and Tony Stewart. Did that affect the way you raced because of those two running for the championship?
"No, not at all. You don't do anything different than you do at Phoenix (International Raceway) in the second race of the season. Everyone just tries to get all they can. If they do you wrong, you do them wrong. If they don't, then you don't. Racing those guys in the Chase (for the NASCAR Sprint Cup) doesn't change anything. Ultimately, you want to end the year on a high note to carry into the off season."

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