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Oct 15, 2013 - 05:46 PM
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2013 Talladega II (Chase 6): Michael Waltrip NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on Oct 15, 2013 - 05:45 PM
2013 Talladega II (Chase 6): Michael Waltrip NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview

Michael Waltrip isn't behind the wheel of the No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine often but when he is the two-time Daytona 500 champion is as good as any restrictor plate driver.


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The 50-year-old’s fourth 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup start comes Sunday on the high banks of Talladega Superspeedway. After a 22nd-place finish in the Daytona 500, Waltrip finished fourth at Talladega in May and fifth at Daytona in July.

He’s had a long list of Talladega accomplishments. Waltrip won this race in 2003 and nearly repeated the feat last October. His bid for the lead in the fourth turn of the final lap ended when Tony Stewart turned down across the nose of Waltrip’s No. 55. The contact triggered a 25-car accident that left Waltrip with a 25th-place finish. He’ll be at the front of the pack again Sunday.

WALTRIP ON TALLADEGA: “I have always enjoyed racing at Talladega. Having won there before and almost winning there last fall I always look forward to going back there. It’s rough racing at Talladega. It’s really hard to survive and keep your car in one piece. I have been able to put myself in position to win a Talladega a few times and have been wiped out in the closing laps. We have been really strong at the superspeedways this year and I am really looking forward to racing this weekend.”


· TALALDEGA: Waltrip will make his 55th Talladega start on Sunday. Only Terry Labonte’s 58 starts exceeds Waltrip among drivers entered in the race. Waltrip owns one win, eight top-five and 16 top-10 finishes. He has led 32 races for 233 laps.

· CAREER: Waltrip owns four Sprint Cup, 11 Nationwide and one Camping World Truck Series victory. He’s led 1,405 laps in Sprint Cup competition. Waltrip has started 773 Sprint Cup races, 279 Nationwide races and nine truck events.

· No. 55 Team Update: Brian Vickers will miss the remainder of the 2013 season. Vickers said Dr. William Downey has placed him on blood thinning medication after a Monday morning examination on his right leg revealed a small blood clot in this calf. Vickers expects a return to racing before the 2014 Daytona 500.

· MWR in 2014: MWR announced its reorganizational plan for 2014 this week that includes running two full-time championship contending Sprint Cup teams plus a third Sprint Cup entry that will run a limited schedule. Waltrip will drive the car in the 2014 Daytona 500. Scott Miller, the team’s executive vice president of competition, will continue his role as crew chief of the No. 55 team in 2014

· Display Visit: Waltrip will visit the Aaron’s display in the sponsor midway Sunday at 10:10 a.m.

No. 55 Crew:
Ex. VP Comp. - Scott Miller
Car Chief/7thman - Steve Channing
Front Changer - Ryan Langley
Rear Changer - Shannon Myers
Front Carrier - Chris Hall
Rear Carrier - Mark Kennerly
Jackman - Tony Cardamone
Gas man - Brian Dheel
2nd Gas Man - Kelly Johnson
Spotter - Curtis Markham
Engineer - Billy Scott
2nd Engineer - Scott McDougall
Tires - Kevin White
Eng.Tuner - Denny Chandler (TRD)
Shocks - Mike (Nook) McCarville
Front Mechanic - Jacen Johns
Interior Mech. - David Cropps
Truck Driver - Glenn Shano
2nd Truck Driver - John Murphy
Pit Coach - Greg Miller
Dir. Race Eng. - Chad Walter
Ex. VP Engineering - Tom German

· AARON’S: All October, Aaron’s is helping you score big on all the best brands! Spin our in-store wheel and you could win up to $100 off your first month’s lease. Register in-store or online at Aarons.com/bigscore to win a $5,000 shopping spree. As always, you’re pre-approved for up to $2,000 in merchandise. Score big and own easier at Aaron’s today!

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