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Jun 04, 2014 - 06:18 AM
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2014 Pocono: Chevrolet NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on Jun 04, 2014 - 06:17 AM
NASCAR News
2014 Pocono: Chevrolet NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview


The Chevrolet SS nameplate has been prominently displayed in Victory Lane following the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races for the past three weeks running. Jeff Gordon placed his No. 24 Chevrolet SS in Winner’s Circle at Kansas Speedway, while his teammate Jimmie Johnson broke a 13-race winless streak and silenced his critics by winning back-to-back races at Charlotte Motor Speedway and Dover International Speedway in his No. 48 Chevy SS.

 

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However, a unique task lies ahead for all Chevrolet branded drivers and teams this weekend as the circuit makes its way to Pocono Raceway, a difficult 2.5-mile, triangular shaped track with three distinctive turns. Add shifting gears to the mix, while tackling long straightaways at high speeds, and the challenge becomes which driver and race car can outlast the rest.

Over the past three races held at Pocono Raceway, nicknamed the ‘Tricky Triangle’, Chevrolet drivers have emerged victorious three times as Gordon, Johnson and their Hendrick Motorsports, teammate Kasey Kahne, collected wins.

Chevrolet looks to win a fourth consecutive race at Pocono this weekend, while also making it four-in-a-row in 2014. Chevrolet is currently the most successful manufacturer at Pocono Raceway with 28 victories, and has hopes of continuing to add to that total.

As fans travel to the popular track nestled in the picturesque Pocono Mountains, there will be plenty for them to do while on site. The Team Chevy display will be open all weekend and will feature a variety of Chevrolet production cars that fans can find out more information about including, Cruze, Malibu, Impala, Camaro, Corvette Stingray, Volt, Tahoe and Silverado. Several Team Chevy drivers will be stopping by the Team Chevy stage including Paul Menard, Spencer Gallagher, Reed Sorenson, Michael Annett and Kurt Busch.

The Pocono 400 is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday June 8th. Live coverage will be available on TNT, MRN Radio, Sirius NASCAR Radio Channel 90 and NASCAR.com.

TEAM CHEVY IN NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES (NSCS) COMPETITION:
· Chevrolet has won 37 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) Manufacturers’ Championships

· Team Chevy drivers have scored 725 wins and 653 poles in NSCS competition

CHEVROLET ON THE TRACK—POCONO RACEWAY:
Chevrolet drivers have won 28 of 72 races at Pocono Raceway. Victories by current Team Chevy drivers are:
Jeff Gordon, No. 24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet SS, has six (6) wins at Pocono Raceway (’96, ’97, ’98, ’07, ’11 & ‘12)
Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s/KOBALT Tools Chevrolet SS, has three (3) victories at Pocono Raceway (’04 – TWICE & ‘13)
Kurt Busch, No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, has visited Victory Lane at Pocono Raceway twice (2) (’05 & ‘07)
Kasey Kahne, No. 5 Great Clips Chevrolet SS, has two (2) wins at Pocono Raceway (’08 & ’13)
Tony Stewart, No. 14 Mobil 1/Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet SS, has two (2) trophies from Pocono Raceway (’03 & ‘09)
Ryan Newman, No. 31 WIX Filters Chevrolet SS, has gone to Victory Lane at Pocono Raceway once (1) (’03)

A Chevrolet driver has won three (3) of the last three (3) races at Pocono Raceway
A Chevrolet driver has sat on the pole at Pocono Raceway 30 times
Team Chevy drivers have scored 146 top-five and 305 top-10 finishes at Pocono Raceway
A Chevrolet has led 6,032 laps (43.1% of possible 13,989 laps) at Dover International Speedway

TEAM CHEVY FOR THE FANS AT POCONO RACEWAY:
· Fans can check out great Chevrolet vehicles including: Cruze, Malibu, Impala, Camaro, Corvette Stingray, Volt, Tahoe and Silverado
· At the display fans can see a variety of show cars and specialty vehicles including the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS show car, Chevrolet SS production car, the all-new Chevrolet Suburban and Camaro Z28
Fans can see a sample of engines, parts and accessories in the Team Chevy Display 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:
· Friday June 6th– Paul Menard will kick things off at the Team Chevy display at 2 p.m. with a question and answer session at the Team Chevy stage
· Saturday June 7th – ARCA driver Spencer Gallagher will stop by the Team Chevy stage at 10 a.m.
· Sunday June 8th – Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet SS teammates Reed Sorenson and Michael Annett will stop by the Team Chevy stage at 9:30 a.m. followed by a question and answer session with two-time Pocono Raceway winner Kurt Busch at 10:10 a.m.
· Hours of operation: Fri. June 6th – 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.; Sat. June 7th – 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. and Sun. June 8th - 7:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

CHEVROLET SPOTLIGHT: Chevrolet holds the record as the winningest manufacturer at Pocono Raceway. Bowtie branded drivers and teams have hoisted the trophy at the ‘Tricky Triangle’ 28 times in 72 races held at the 2.5-mile track. Chevrolet’s Jeff Gordon holds the record for most win at Pocono Raceway with six (6) victories.

BOWTIE BULLET: 15 of the 72 (20.8%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Pocono have been won from the Coors Light pole; the most recent was Chevrolet driver Jimmie Johnson last June.

DID YOU KNOW? General Motors earned half of the superior ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s rating program on front crash prevention. The Buick Regal, Cadillac CTS, Cadillac XTS and Chevrolet Impala are all considered industry leaders when purchased with GM’s available Front Automatic Braking system.

ENGINEER EXPERTISE FROM THE GARAGE AREA –– ALBA COLON, PROGRAM MANAGER, NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES - CHEVROLET RACING:
“Congratulations to Jimmie Johnson, Chad Knaus, Rick Hendrick, and the entire No. 48 HMS Lowe’s/KOBALT Tools Chevrolet SS race team for their great win at Dover. That was fantastic!

“This weekend the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit heads over to Pocono Raceway. The unique nature of the triangular-shaped track is always a fun challenge for the drivers and teams. Pocono’s 2.5-mile configuration requires heavier use of the brakes than most big tracks. It not only puts extra wear on the brake components, but also on the engines; much like a road course. Also, all three corners are different, and they change throughout the race. Nothing like a new challenge this season. We look forward to it.

“In reviewing our report card to date, we are at the halfway point to the start of the Chase to the NASCAR Sprint Cup. And with that in mind, so far the 2014 racing season has been a good season for Team Chevy with seven wins in 13 races. But every weekend we face tough competition, and we don’t rest on our success. We keep working hard in delivering the best tools to our teams to ensure they are in position to win every race. Championships are built day by day.

“Pocono is a track where Team Chevy has enjoyed a lot of success in the past, and it is among my favorites. Looking forward to a great win on Sunday at the ‘Tricky Triangle’.”

WHERE IN THE WORLD ARE THE CHEVROLET SS RACE CARS?
This weeks’ race is at Pocono Raceway in Pocono, Pennsylvania. 22 Chevrolet SS will attempt to qualify at the track nicknamed ‘The Tricky Triangle’. Fans can watch and/or listen to all the action Sunday June 8th on TNT, MRN Radio, Sirius NASCAR Radio Channel 90 and NASCAR.com

TEAM CHEVY FROM THE DRIVER’S SEAT:
JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 DRIVE TO END HUNGER CHEVROLET SS – 2ND IN STANDINGS
“I don’t think the track has changed – it’s just the curb I believe has been removed from Turn 2 and the access road is now like a normal apron. I think visually it’s going to take some getting used to. We used that curb as a real focal point and, now that it’s gone, what you used to get through that corner will be different.”

JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S/KOBALT TOOLS CHEVROLET SS – 4TH IN STANDINGS
“We have some momentum right now. Pocono is a great track for the No. 48 team. There are a couple of things there to think about and I think it’s such a big track it’s tough to see it all from a fan perspective. But inside the car and the challenge that the crew chief face there is a lot going on around that race track. I know it is Chad’s (Knaus) favorite race track to go to because all three corners are different, the loading is different, the banking is different, and there are a bunch of tools and options to adjust the race car all the way around the track. That is what Chad really enjoys about that.”

KYLE LARSON, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET SS – 10TH IN STANDINGS
“This will be my first time racing at Pocono, but I’m ready for this weekend’s race. Jamie has given me some good advice about where the braking zones and shift points are, and I’ll get some feel for the race track under competition conditions on Saturday when I drive in the ARCA Pocono 200. The track is definitely pretty tricky, with the tight turns and different distances in the straights, and needing to downshift in every corner. I think those challenges will make the racing fun though. The track is just so different from anywhere else we race. Pennsylvania definitely has some of the weirdest race tracks. Our Target Chevy has consistently been good so I expect we should have another good car for this weekend.”

RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 31 WIX FILTERS CHEVROLET SS – 11TH IN STANDINGS
"It's a third more work per lap is what it amounts to. I wouldn't say it's anything crazy or anything we can't handle. All three corners are different and it makes it more different. It's possible to set your car up for all three turns. It's doable to make the car perfect. It's not easy, but all it takes is good communication between you, the crew chief and the engineers. One of the reasons why I like the place is because of the unique turns and the chance to shift. Shifting makes it fun and adds a little more fun. There is still heavy braking, so it has characteristics of a short track. It's totally unique, which is what I like."

KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 4 BUDWEISER CHEVROLET SS – 12TH IN STANDINGS
“I think as you look at Pocono, it’s got three very different corners and I think after the repave those corners are varied even more than in the past just because you carry a lot more speed into Turn 1 than you do the other corners. Pocono has very fast corners with a few different approaches because of the banking differences, but I think the biggest challenge is probably Turn 3 and getting your car to rotate through the center of the corner and still be able to stay in the throttle as long as you need to up off the corner.”

PAUL MENARD, NO. 27 MOEN/MENARDS CHEVROLET SS – 14TH IN STANDINGS
“Pocono is a great track as far as uniqueness obviously. We shift (gears) there; a lot of guys have been doing that the last couple of years which adds a different element. It’s kind of like a big road course really, you just turn left. The hardest part there is trying to get your car out of the air while still maintaining grip in the corners. In turn one it’s real wide and has pretty good banking. You can run side-by-side. Turn two is really flat and sharp which makes it very difficult to run side-by-side through. Turn three is in-between; it’s real flat but with a sweeping, pretty wide corner. It’s definitely a unique track.”

AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 DOW CHEVROLET SS – 15TH IN STANDINGS
"We did test there. We chose that as one of our tracks. Ryan Newman wanted to go there, so we went there to learn as much as we could. I ran there in the trucks. I'm sure it's going to be a learning experience shifting and doing different things, and three turns does make it a little harder than two to comprehend. It's a frustrating place because you have three different corners to set up for. One's flat, one's banked and one's just a weird corner, so you get after it as hard as you can and try to give it the best you can."

AJ ALLMENDINGER, NO. 47 CLOROX CHEVROLET SS – 20TH IN STANDINGS
“With the repave, it is definitely a lot smoother. It is one of those places that you have got to get into a rhythm. You know using your brake markers. Usually a lot of these tracks you do it by feel, but at Pocono you have got to use markers on the side of the racetrack to figure out where you need to brake. You also have to get the downshifts timed right in general. It becomes a rhythm. With a year gone, I’m not sure how the track will be with the pavement sitting through the tough winter.”

TONY STEWART, NO. 14 MOBIL 1/BASS PRO SHOPS CHEVROLET SS – 21ST IN STANDINGS
“Going into turn one you drive it in kind of deep and then you try to float the car through the corner. It’s very flat when you go down the backstretch and into the tunnel turn. Then the short chute into turn three – it’s a big, long corner and it’s important to get through that turn well because you have a straightaway that’s three-quarters of a mile long after that. You need to come off the corner quickly so that you aren’t bogged down when you start down that long straightaway. Each corner has its challenges, and each one tends to present a different set of circumstances with each lap you make.”

JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 CUSHMAN/CESSNA CHEVROLET SS – 23RD IN STANDINGS
“I think Pocono is about compromise. You can’t have you car good in all three turns, so just working to make the car good to carry speed down the long straightaways is really important. I think the best thing about Pocono is the shifting, I feel like that opens up opportunities to pass. We tested there last week and the surface is still really smooth; I was actually shocked. I figured with the ground that track is on, it would be rougher this year, but it is still nice and smooth. They have changed the tunnel turn. As different as it looks entering the corner, it really doesn’t drive much different. I think it will give you a bail-out area on a restart, as that usually gets a little crazy.”

CASEY MEARS, NO. 13 GEICO CHEVROLET SS – 24TH IN STANDINGS
"We had a strong run at Dover before a tire issue caused a problem for us in the closing laps, so we feel good about where we are right now. Everyone on this GEICO team is working hard and is focused on getting better. Pocono is a fun racetrack and we are looking forward to getting there and seeing what we can do in our No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS. I will also be making an appearance at GEICO's display area from 10 AM - 10:20 AM on Sunday morning. I always enjoy engaging the fans and talking racing with the folks that support our sport."

MARTIN TRUEX, JR., NO. 78 FURNITURE ROW CHEVROLET SS – 25TH IN STANDINGS
“Next to Dover, Pocono Raceway is my second home track and hopefully we can pull off another strong performance as we did last week in Dover by finishing sixth. We're running so much better lately and the bad luck didn't bite us on Sunday in Dover. The week before Dover we had a top-10 car at Charlotte but a freak breakage with nine laps remaining in a 400-lap race did us in. The big difference is that we have found more speed in our Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet. We need a win to make the Chase, but before you win in the Sprint Cup Series you need to start running close to the front. That will be our goal for Pocono. We conducted a two-day test in Pocono last week and hopefully that will enhance our performance this weekend. Pocono is not as tricky as it used to be, but it is still a difficult track. It's a big challenge for the crew chiefs and engineers. Personally, I like Pocono, it's fun and we get to shift there. My experiences at Pocono have been really hot or really cold. I am ready and confident for a really hot performance on Sunday.”

KURT BUSCH, NO. 41 HAAS AUTOMATION CHEVROLET SS – 27TH IN STANDINGS
“My first win at Pocono in 2005 was pretty great. It’s fun to win at a racetrack that is so unique because of how different that track is compared to all the other oval tracks. Pocono is a little bit like Darlington in that all the corner are different, so you have to manage them the best that you can and not be perfect in one corner versus another. The win in 2007 with Penske Racing – that was the fastest car that I’ve ever driven. That car would turn, stick, drive down the straightaway – that car did everything. It didn’t have a single flaw. I knew how good that car was on the first lap of the race. I remember telling myself, ‘don’t screw this up!’ I ran the rest of the race more nervous than I had in years past. I’ve never dominated a race like that. We led 175 of 200 laps. That was by far the best car I have ever driven. It was a great race to show the balance of that team and the strength of where we were at that point. I think the 25 laps that we didn’t lead were from a bad pit stop at one point.”

DANICA PATRICK, NO. 10 GODADDY CHEVROLET SS – 28TH IN STANDINGS
“It’s a neat place, definitely a unique track. It’s still a place I don’t have a ton of experience at. I know Tony Gibson has won there a couple of times and does a good job setting up the car. It’s just an odd place to set the car up because the corners are so different. If you are really good in turn one, then maybe two and three are a little off. Or if you’re good in three maybe one and two are different. I will say that the straightaway is enormous. There’s a lot of distance between turns three and one.”

JUSTIN ALLGAIER, NO. 51 BRANDT PROFESSIONAL AGRICULTURE CHEVROLET SS – 29TH IN STANDINGS
Pocono [Raceway] is one of my favorite tracks. I always enjoyed racing there when I was in ARCA and have a win there, so that certainly makes me like it more. I haven’t raced on the track in a few years, but my HScott Motorsports team tested there a few weeks ago and it went really well. It gave me the chance to get acclimated with the track again. I think we will have a great BRANDT Chevy this weekend, and if we keep doing what we are doing, we’ll be fine."

MICHAEL ANNETT, NO. 7 PILOT FLYING J CHEVROLET SS – 30TH IN STANDINGS
"We tested there last week and before that I had never been there. It's truly a unique track, a unique place. We'll continue to learn during the practice sessions, to see if there's anything else we can gain. I'm confident that we can make strides over the course of the weekend."

REED SORENSON, NO. 36 THEME PARK CONNECTION CHEVROLET SS – 33RD IN STANDINGS
“We have a new sponsor on board this weekend at Pocono Raceway. Theme Park Connection has jumped on board the No. 36 Chevrolet and joined us for our Salute the Troops campaign. We had a great weekend at Dover, and I'm hoping to continue that this weekend.”

Chevrolet NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Statistics

Manufacturers Championships
Total (1949 – 2013): 37
First title for Chevrolet: 1958
Highest number of consecutive titles: 11 (2003-2013)

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, 2012, 2013

Drivers Championships
Total (1949 – 2013): 29
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, 2013

Event Victories
Record for total race wins in single season: 26 – (in 2007)

2014 STATISTICS:
Wins: 7
Poles: 6
Laps led: 2546
Top-five finishes: 30
Top-10 finishes: 70

CHEVROLET IN NASCAR SPRINT CUP CUMULATIVE STATISTICS:
Total Chevrolet race wins: 725 (1949 – to date); (2,402 possible = 30.0%)
Poles Won to Date: 653
Laps Lead to Date: 216,206
Top-Five Finishes to Date: 3,645
Top-10 Finishes to Date: 7,451

Total NASCAR Cup wins by Corporation, 1949 – To-Date

GM: 1,060
Chevrolet: 725
Pontiac: 155
Oldsmobile: 115
Buick: 65

Ford: 722
Ford: 622
Mercury: 96
Lincoln: 4

Chrysler: 466
Dodge: 217
Plymouth: 190
Chrysler: 59

Toyota: 65

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