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Jun 11, 2014 - 06:53 AM
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2014 Michigan: AJ Allmendinger NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on Jun 11, 2014 - 06:52 AM
NASCAR News
2014 Michigan: AJ Allmendinger NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview


Track: Michigan International Speedway
Event: Quicken Loans 400,
Race Date / Time: Sunday, June 15th, 1 PM ET
TV / Radio: TNT / MRN Radio / SiriusXM

 

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TEAM QUOTES:

Michigan International Speedway: "Michigan is a tough place because with the repave I feel like the track has always got a lot of grip in it especially during practice and it is really fast," Allmendinger said. "Then after the sun comes out for the race, it will turn on you in a heartbeat and be really slick. That is a place that if you are loose, it’s a real tough track to get around.

"I enjoy it though," Allmendinger continued. "I think Michigan is a fun track to be able to race on. Since the repave, the groove is starting to widen out a little bit. The racing is even better now. More than anything, we are trying to keep getting better as a team. The guys have been working so hard and I am looking forward to this weekend because of the car we are bringing to the track.”

New Charter Chevrolet SS: “I think the main thing that comes to mind is having a brand new race car for the first time this year beside the superspeedway races," Allmendinger said. "That is something that hopefully makes a difference. I feel like on the bigger tracks we haven’t been way off, but we have not been where we need to be either so hopefully that will help a little bit."

High hopes: “We have high hopes for Michigan International Speedway and we should unload with a competitive car,” crew chief Brian Burns said. “We feel like we have a good baseline setup because we ran really good at California (Auto Club Speedway) and we also have a brand new No. 47 Charter Chevrolet SS that we are rolling out this week. We feel like we will have a little more to showcase this weekend. Also, we were able to get a little rest this week and spend some time with our family after being on the road for nearly two weeks going from Dover International Speedway to Sonoma Raceway to Pocono Raceway."

Time flies: “The team has been though a lot, from where we were last year to having the RCR (Richard Childress Racing) alliance and such a quick turnover in the off season," Allmendinger said. "The guys have put a lot of hard work into getting to the track every weekend."

Enjoying JTG Daugherty Racing: "It’s a really fun race team," Allmendinger continued. "I definitely see a lot of improvement just from this one year period and where we are running. Our expectations are different from what we expect when we go to the track and where we should be running. I look at last year doing the first race with the team and if you said this is where we will be this time next year, I would have been pretty happy. At the same point, it shows to me at least the potential in the team because where we are at I’m not yet satisfied. I always want to be better and I think we have the potential to be even better. We just have to keep working at it.”

Michigan top of mind: "I think there are good things ahead for us at Michigan International Speedway," JTG Daugherty Racing co-owner Brad Daugherty said. "I know the Childress (Richard Childress Racing) guys are working on some pieces and parts. Our guys back at the race shop are really working hard on giving us the best car we can have when we get there. We will have a brand new car for that race. Speeds are going to be tremendous. The guys that tested there were going 217 to 218 miles per hour off into the corners. I know AJ enjoys real high-speed racetracks. I think our high-speed, high-grip program is getting better. We don't have the tremendous depth and that's where a team our size could struggle throughout June and July. We're doing our best to have a good start to the dog days. If we can get some good finishes the latter part of the season. Who knows? We could make this Chase and win some races."

On the road again: “Being on the road for so long is tough and it takes me out of my routine,” Allmendinger said. “Even though, I haven’t been home since before Dover (International Speedway), I’ve got to do some good things these past couple of weeks on the road. We got to test Sonoma for two days. It was a big deal because it made a big difference. I feel like if we had not did that test, we would have shown up and we would have been way off. That trip out west was tough on all of us - - some of the road crew, my crew chief (Brian Burns), engineer (Tony Palmer) and myself.

"Then to be able to go from Pocono Raceway to New York City and go in studio for The Chew was a great experience and really something else," Allmendinger continued. "I had a great time with Carla Hall and the entire crew. You can’t really complain about being on the road so much lately because our team owner (Tad Geschickter) does it every week. He sets the example for all of us to make the race team better. I have been on the roads a couple weeks straight and it’s definitely tough. I get home tonight and basically take my clothes out of my bag, wash them and put them right back in because I have an early flight in the morning to Orrville, Ohio to spend some time with the folks at Hungry Jack. It will be neat to meet some people that is new to our program. That experience will be a lot of fun welcoming a new partner to our family. Then we are driving from there to Michigan. I’m going to play a couple rounds of golf with Tad, my team owner, and he is someone that’s become a really good friend. Then Friday, it’s back to work at the track. I'll get a couple days home next week. So, I'm also looking forward to that.”

FAST FACTS:

AJ Allmendinger has 11 starts at Michigan International Speedway and has one lap there. His best finish is 11th-place (8/21/11). His average start is 25.727and his average finish is 20.818.

Career Starts: 205
Top-fives: 6
Top-10s: 33
Pole Awards: 2
First Start: 3/25/2007 Bristol
First Pole: 4/10/2010 Phoenix
Last Pole: 4/22/2012 Kansas
Best Start: 1 - 4/10/2010 Phoenix
Best Finish: 2 - 4/1/2012 Martinsville
Driver DOB: 12/16/1981
Hometown: San Jose, Calif.
Crew Chief: Brian Burns

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#47FanOfTheWeek:

What are you grilling for dad this Father's Day weekend?

Fire up your grill and share your photos, recipes and stories with us!

The person submitting our favorite entry will have their photo featured on AJ Allmendinger's #47 Kingsford car for next week's race in Sonoma.

You can tweet your entries to us at @NASCAR47 or you can post them to the JTG Daugherty Racing page on Facebook.

Have fun, be creative and good luck!

AJ'S WHEREABOUTS:

Sunday, June 15

Sponsor meet & greets at 47 hauler

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