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2013 Dover: Parker Kligerman NASCAR Nationwide Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on May 30, 2013 - 12:20 PM
2013 Dover: Parker Kligerman NASCAR Nationwide Race Preview

Parker Kligerman and his No. 77 Toyota Racing team head northeast to Dover (Del.) International Speedway for Saturday's NASCAR Nationwide Series race with Delaware-based All Metal Fabricators onboard as a one-race co-primary sponsor. The Connecticut native enters this weekend's event in his home region sixth in the Nationwide Series driver's point standings, having 'fabricated' 243 championship points over the last seven events, second to only points leader Regan Smith's 273 during that span.


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Including his ninth-place finish at Charlotte Motor Speedway last week, the 22-year-old driver has produced consistent results in his first full-time season in the Nationwide Series. Since finishing 30th due to a parts failure at Las Vegas (Nev.) Motor Speedway in March, he has finished 15th or better in each of the last seven races, including a career best fourth-place finish at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.

The Northeasterner is hoping to continue his steadfast progression this season as he travels to Dover, a track where he has already proven to be capable of contending for wins in the Truck Series. In last June's event, Kligerman's truck sustained some front-end damage from an early accident, but the talented youngster was able to recover and drove back through the field and ended the day with a runner-up finish in the rain-shortened event. In his first start at the concrete track in NASCAR's third division, he was challenging Cole Whitt for the second position with eight laps remaining when he got loose, made contact with the wall and was relegated to a 21st-place finish.

Kligerman comes to Dover with a solid resume at the concrete track and increased confidence from a productive seven-race stretch. The talented youngster is hoping that he can continue 'fabricating' points at a steady pace as the battle for the 2013 Nationwide Series Championship begins to take shape.

Parker Kligerman, Driver of the No. 77 NNS Toyota Camry:

How does a driver from a single-car Nationwide Series team compete with drivers from Cup-affiliated teams?
"As a small team what we need to do to put ourselves in a position to be fighting for a championship against teams with bigger budgets is to continually find ways to maximize our finishing position each week. If we have a 12th-place car and we can take that and finish 11th, that's a day in which we can be proud of. If we have a 10th-place car and finish eighth, we can be really proud. If we have a 10th-place car and finish fifth, we have something we can write home about. I think that's what you'll see from us as we continue this season and try to be consistent. If we can keep having consistent runs and maximizing our finishes, we'll find ourselves in a position to compete for the championship."

How different is racing on concrete?
"Everyone talks about the difference between the two as being harsher in terms of concrete with the slabs and such, but it's just different. That is the best way to put it -- it's absolutely different. It's just a different surface and the way the tire interacts with the surface is completely different. What we see at concrete tracks a lot of the time is the way the rubber meshes into the concrete and usually depending on how the tire is, either slicks the concrete up or it grips it up. A lot of times we find a concrete track will be more abrasive and chew up a tire, but as the rubber lays down it goes one of two ways. Asphalt - we normally see that if you lay rubber down then it's going to be slicker. That's just simply how it is."

Eric Phillips, Crew Chief of the No. 77 NNS Toyota Camry:

What are the biggest differences between racing on concrete and pavement?
"The concrete doesn't change with the temperature nearly as much as the pavement. Last week at Charlotte, there was a big swing in grip level as the asphalt temperature went up. You don't see that with concrete, so it's a little bit easier to tune your car when you're not depending on the weather. The other thing is how the concrete takes rubber. That is something you have to pay attention to with the different tires that Goodyear brings every year. Some tires will lay a lot of rubber down and you'll get tight and other tires don't lay as much down. You have to pay attention to what the track does rubber-wise and evaluate which direction you need to go with your adjustments."

Parker Kligerman's No. 77 Toyota Camry:

KBM-3: KBM-3 will make its second start of the 2013 season in Saturday's 200-lap event. The last time it saw action, Parker Kligerman drove the Toyota to a ninth-place finish at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway in March. The Camry raced five times in 2012, posting three top-five finishes - including both Dover races.

Notes of Interest:
Parker Kligerman @ Dover:
• Qualified 12th, ran as high as seventh and finished 12th in the 2012 spring NNS event
• Qualified 11th, led one lap and finished second in the 2012 NCWTS race
• Qualified ninth and was running third with eight laps remaining when an accident relegated him to a 21st-place finish in the 2011 NCWTS race

Parker Kligerman 2013 Highlights:
• Has posted two top-five and five top-10 finishes across 10 starts, including a series-best fourth-place finish at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. (3/23/13)
• Ranks sixth in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) championship point standings - 54 markers behind points leader Regan Smith - with nine of 33 races completed
• Qualified a season-best third, led 10 laps and registered a fifth-place finish in the season-opening DRIVE4COPD 300 at Daytona International Speedway (2/23/13)

Parker Kligerman 2012 Highlights:
• Earned his first career NCWTS victory at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway (10/6/12)
• Captured two pole awards (9/15/12 @ Iowa Speedway and 11/16/12 @ Homestead-Miami Speedway)
• Collected eight top-five and 15 top-10 finishes en route to a fifth-place finish in the final NCWTS point standings
• Posted two top-10 finishes in three NNS starts, including a then career-best seventh-place finish at Chicagoland Speedway

Parker Kligerman Career Highlights:
2011 - Registered four top-five and eight top-10 finishes en route to an 11th-place finish in the final NCWTS point standings as a rookie
2010 - Recorded two top-10 finishes in 12 NNS starts
2009 - At the age of 19, captured the pole in his first-ever NNS start at Kansas Speedway, becoming the 10th driver in series history to accomplish the feat
2009 - Earned Rookie of the Year award in the ARCA Racing Series after winning a series-high nine races and finishing second in the final point standings

Kyle Busch Motorsports' NNS Program:
• Has collected two top-five and five top-10 finishes, resulting in an average finish of 12.0 across 10 starts this season
• After 10 races ranks ninth in the 2013 Nationwide Series owner's point standings - 88 markers behind the series-leading No. 54 team
• Posted a season-best fourth-place finish in the Royal Purple 300 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. (3/23/13)
• Earned a season-best third-place starting position for the DRIVE4COPD 300 at Daytona International Speedway (2/23/13)
• Registered 1 win (Kurt Busch at Richmond International Raceway 4/27/12), 4 runner-up finishes, 15 top-five and 22 top-10 finishes en route to an eighth-place finish in the owner's point standings last season in its inaugural NNS campaign
• Captured three poles, all with Kyle Busch behind the wheel (9/1/12 at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Ga., 11/3/12 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth and 11/17/12 at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway)

Last Year @ Dover:
• Kurt Busch started ninth and finished fourth in the spring event (6/2/12)
• Kyle Busch started seventh and finished fifth in the fall event (10/13/12)

Last NNS Event:
• Parker Kligerman qualified fifth and finished ninth in the History 300 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway
Kyle Busch Motorsports:
• Overall in three seasons of NASCAR competition KBM has registered 20 victories (19 NCWTS, 1 NNS) and 11 poles (8 NCWTS, 3 NNS)
• In 2010, KBM's No. 18 Tundra team became first group since the Truck Series originated in 1995 to win the Owner's Championship in its inaugural season

Nationwide is on His Side:
Kligerman will be carrying the Nationwide Insurance onboard camera during Saturday's 200-lap event.

The Phillips File:
Eric Phillips is in his first season as a crew chief in the NASCAR Nationwide Series and fourth atop the pit box for KBM. In three seasons as crew chief of KBM's flagship No. 18 Tundra, the Illinois native led the team to 17 victories and the 2010 Truck Series Owner's Championship. Phillips' 27 career Truck Series wins rank second on the all-time list, trailing only KBM General Manager Rick Ren (28). Phillips' Truck Series drivers combined for 1 win (Kyle Busch, 2011), 1 pole (Kyle Busch, 2010), 1 top-five and two top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 13.9 across eight starts at "The Monster Mile."

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