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Jun 25, 2014 - 07:02 AM
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2014 Kentucky: Brian Vickers NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on Jun 25, 2014 - 07:00 AM
2014 Kentucky: Brian Vickers NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview

Kentucky Speedway’s advertising bills itself as the roughest track on the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit. No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine driver Brian Vickers can attest to that claim. A broken wheel during a May 20-21 Goodyear tire test at the 1.5-mile track led to a hard wreck in turn three for Vickers. The Michael Waltrip Racing driver wasn’t seriously hurt in the accident, but he said Saturday night’s race is going to be all about negotiating the rough surface and surviving 400 miles of close, high-speed racing.


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Vickers crew chief Billy Scott said the time his team spent at Kentucky Speedway should pay dividends in Saturday night’s race although he expects the hot setup in May will be different than what works Saturday night.

BRIAN VICKERS ON KENTUCKY SPEEDWAY: “It’s an extremely rough race track. I broke a wheel last time I was there so that tells you it’s pretty rough. I like tracks with some bumps and character, but Kentucky is really rough. I think it is time for a repave. On the straightaways your head is moving back and forth so much it gives you a headache. We did the Goodyear tire test there in May and we certainly learned a few things. But, this weekend it’s going to be a tough track for everyone.”

CREW CHIEF BILLY SCOTT ON AT-TRACK TESTING: “Nothing replaces going to the track and testing. All these NASCAR teams use tools like computer simulations that do a good job of helping us get an idea of what to expect once you arrive at the track. But, you don’t have real drivers or real tires. Nothing beats getting out there and running laps, getting data and hearing the feedback from the drivers.”

WOULD YOU TEST MORE? “In a perfect world—from just the setup standpoint—we would test every track we race. But considering time and money involved in doing that I’d prefer if none of us tested. That keeps it fair for the whole field and saves time and money.”

IS THERE A DOWNSIDE TO TESTING? “Not really other than time and cost. You have that chance to wreck a car and often times the tracks change by the time you go back. That even happens on the same weekend let alone when there are several weeks between testing and racing. You aren't going to race what you thought was best at the test, but you will be somewhere closer than if you hadn’t gone there at all.”


· CHASSIS: Primary: 797 finished sixth at Charlotte and seventh at California. Backup: 801 finished 13th at Las Vegas

FANTERN: Each week MWR offers fans a chance to become an official MWR Fantern. This person will get the opportunity to be an “intern” on race day helping the pit crews with set-up activities, attending driver appearances and getting full access to the pit and garage areas. Fans can write in a submission to webmaster@michaelwaltrip.com or share a video on our social channels explaining why they should be the Fantern at the race of their choosing during the 2014 season.

AARON’S: Aaron’s joined MWR in 2000 serving as a primary sponsor in Sprint Cup and Nationwide races. The Atlanta-based company, with more than 2,130 stores across the country, helps customers own the life they want. Aaron's carries only the best brand names in furniture, electronics, and appliances with a variety of flexible payment options. It's really easy to “Own it” at Aaron’s with customers who are now pre-approved for up to $2,500 in merchandise without needing credit. Visit Aarons.com to find a store near you.

#ASKMWR: Throughout race weekends in 2014 MWR will collect questions hash-tagged #AskMWR on its @MWRteam Twitter handle. No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Jackman Wes Evans will host a 3-minute video each Wednesday on www.michaelwaltripracing.com featuring MWR experts answering the best fan questions from the weekend.

CREW CHIEF BILLY SCOTT: The 2014 Daytona 500 marked the first race for No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Crew Chief Billy Scott. The 36-year-old began racing motorcycles as a 5-year-old and stock cars when he turned 15. He worked in the truck series as a mechanic before he returned to college to obtain an engineering degree. After graduating in 2005 Scott worked at Robert Yates Racing and began as an engineer at MWR in 2008. He served exclusively as the No. 55 team’s lead engineer the last two seasons.

55 CREW:
Billy Scott Crew Chief
Ryan Langley Front Tire Changer
Chris Hall Front Tire Carrier
Shannon Myers Rear Tire Changer
Blake Haugland Rear Tire Carrier
Wes Evans Jack Man
Jeff Kerr Gas Man
Steve Channing Car Chief
David Cropps Interior Mechanic
Roman Pemberton Spotter
Brandon Pope Race Engineer
Joe Bisson 2nd Engineer
Jeremy Sharpley Shock Specialist
Jacen Johns Front Mechanic
Joe Zanolini Rear Mechanic
Kevin White Tire Specialist
Denny Chandler Engine Tuner
Tim Bruce Engine Engineer
Glenn Shano Truck Driver
Al Nelson 2nd Truck Driver





Date Friday June 27
Practice 10:30 a.m. FS1
Practice 1:00 p.m. FS1
Qualifying 5:30 p.m. FS1

Date Saturday June 28
Race 7:30 p.m. TNT

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