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Aug 20, 2014 - 07:06 AM
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2014 Bristol II: Chevrolet NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on Aug 20, 2014 - 06:59 AM
NASCAR News
2014 Bristol II: Chevrolet NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview


From a famous flat 2.0-mile track to a ‘Tricky Triangle’ to turning left and right and then competing in the backyard of Chevrolet’s headquarters; the past four weeks have presented a variety of challenges for Chevy SS drivers and teams. However, those who proudly carry the Bowtie Brand have stepped up to the challenge. Four wins in four weeks now lead the Chevy SS to possibly its biggest challenge – winning on the 0.5-mile, high-banked, short-track, under the lights at Bristol Motor Speedway.

 

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Over the past three events held at the track dubbed ‘the world’s fastest half-mile’ Chevrolet’s Kasey Kahne has been the only one who has tamed the concrete beast. With Kahne and the No. 5 Chevy SS team on the outside looking in at a Chase berth, this weekend seems to be the prime opportunity for the remaining Hendrick Motorsports team to secure a spot in this year’s Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.

However, they will be put to the task of keeping their tempers tame, while preserving their equipment and making all the right moves finding the fast lane around the tiny oval.

Despite the fact Chevrolet teams and drivers have only celebrated in Victory Lane once over the last three races the manufacturer does hold the record for the most wins at Bristol Motor Speedway with 43 total wins. Chevrolet SS drivers Kurt Busch and Jeff Gordon are in a three-way tie for the most wins by active drivers with five victories each to their credit.

This weekend at the fifth different style track in five weeks, Chevrolet hopes to keep the winning streak alive and roll a Chevy SS into Victory Lane for the 14th time this season.

The 500 lap/266.5 mile Irwin Tools Night Race under the lights at Bristol Motor Speedway is scheduled to begin on Saturday August 23rd at 7:30 p.m. ET. Live coverage will be available on ABC, PRN, 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 731 wins and 659 poles in NSCS competition

CHEVROLET ON THE TRACK—BRISTOL MOTOR SPEEDWAY:
Chevrolet drivers have won 43 of 107 races at Bristol Motor Speedway. Victories by current Team Chevy drivers are:
Kurt Busch, No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, has five (5) wins at Bristol Motor Speedway (BMS) (’02, ’03 – TWICE, ’04 & ’06)
Jeff Gordon, No. 24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet SS, has five (5) victories at BMS (’95, ’96, ’97, ‘98 & ‘02)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., No. 88 National Guard Chevrolet SS, has visited Victory Lane at BMS once (1) (’04)
Kevin Harvick, No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS, has one (1) trophy from BMS (’05)
Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS, has made one (1) trip to Winner’s Circle at BMS (’10)
Kasey Kahne, No. 5 Great Clips Chevrolet SS, has recorded one (1) victory at BMS (’13)
Tony Stewart, No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevrolet SS, has one (1) win at BMS (’01)


A Chevrolet driver has won one (1) of the last three (3) races at Bristol Motor Speedway
A Chevrolet driver has sat on the pole at Bristol Motor Speedway 36 times
Team Chevy drivers have scored 189 top-five and 386 top-10 finishes at Bristol Motor Speedway
A Chevrolet has led 21,944 laps (41.4% of possible 52,977 laps) at Bristol Motor Speedway

CHEVROLET SPOTLIGHT: Eight different manufacturers have won in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Bristol led by Chevrolet with 43 victories.

BOWTIE BULLET: Chevrolet’s Jeff Gordon and Kurt Busch are in a three-way tie for active drivers with the most wins at Bristol Motor Speedway. Each driver has five to their credit.

DID YOU KNOW? If a comfortable ride is your thing, KBB.com says the 2014 Impala is your top choice under $30,000. Though the Impala has adapted to evolving technologies and consumer trends through the years, the 10th generation Impala has remained true to its roots in offering generous cabin spaciousness and a comfortable ride. Entry-luxury vehicles like the 2014 Volvo S60, 2014 Toyota Avalon and 2014 Chrysler 300 made the list, which was selected by the consumer website’s editors, but the Impala came out on top.

ENGINEER EXPERTISE FROM THE GARAGE AREA –– ALBA COLON, PROGRAM MANAGER, NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES - CHEVROLET RACING:
“After a great NASCAR Sprint Cup win in our backyard, Team Chevy is looking forward to racing under the lights at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. This is one of those races that we all enjoy; and there is nothing quite like exciting short track racing on a Saturday night!

“Congratulations to Jeff Gordon, Alan Gustafson, Rick Hendrick and the entire No. 24 Axalta Chevrolet SS team members for winning at Michigan International Speedway last Sunday. This victory marked Jeff’s 91st NASCAR Sprint Cup career win, which is quite an accomplishment. With this win, Chevrolet was able to sweep both Michigan races this year, which is also quite a feat. Retaining the Michigan Heritage Trophy in our Detroit office brings a lot of pride to our company.

“Bristol Motor Speedway is a very demanding place on drivers, teams and equipment. The high-speed half-mile track offers its own unique set of challenges. Having a well-balanced and good handling car, along with staying out of trouble, are the keys for success at Bristol.

“With three races to go before the start of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, the teams are not leaving anything on the table. The complete field won’t be decided until the last lap at the Richmond race; so every lap led, every win, and every finishing position counts more than ever.

“Our teams work very hard every week to put the best cars and strategies in place. With solid preparation and a little bit of luck, we are looking forward to celebrating in Victory Lane late Saturday evening at Bristol.”

WHERE IN THE WORLD ARE THE CHEVROLET SS RACE CARS?
This weeks’ race is at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. 23 Chevrolet SS race cars will attempt to qualify at the 0.5-mile, high-banked short track. Fans can watch and/or listen to all the action on ABC, PRN, 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 – POINTS LEADER
“(No. 24 crew chief) Alan (Gustafson) and the crew are giving me great cars each week. It’s a lot of fun going to the track right now, and this week is no exception. I love racing at Bristol and we’re really looking forward to this Saturday night’s race.
“Bristol provides the teams with a lot of challenges, but I love the input a driver can give to help influence the setup. It’s a track that most drivers seem to enjoy racing at. It’s a track the fans love, as well.”

DALE EARNHARDT, JR., NO. 88 DIET MOUNTAIN DEW CHEVROLET SS – 2ND IN STANDINGS
“Bristol is a fun racetrack. I love racing on the short tracks. We don’t get to do a whole lot of it throughout the year so I’m really hoping to just be able to make all the laps. If you are out there making all the laps, you’re going to be enjoying yourself because you can’t run around Bristol without having fun.”

KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 4 JIMMY JOHN’S CHEVROLET SS – 6TH IN STANDINGS
“Bristol has never been one of those place that you think about that much to be honest with you. It just seems like all the action and everything happens for the night races there for whatever reason. It’s a fun place to race. It’s been a place where we’ve had a lot of success. And, sometimes you go there and you have no success because you run into something. It’s kind of feast or famine as you go there and that’s kind of where we are at right now in this point of our season. We want to win races and really nothing else matters at this point except for wins. Hopefully when we go back to Bristol we will be on the right side of having some success.”

JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S CHEVROLET SS – 7TH IN STANDINGS
“Looking forward to Bristol on Saturday night. It should be an exciting race for the fans for sure – we had a great Lowe’s Chevy there in the spring but had a tire issue so we didn’t have a great finish – looking forward to keeping all the wheels on it under the lights Saturday night.”

RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 31 CATERPILLAR CHEVROLET SS – 9TH IN STANDINGS
"The speeds at Bristol are so much greater than they used to be. It used to be where they would fall off two, three or four seconds a run while fighting forward drive. Now it's not so much that, so it's pretty intense both mentally and physically."

AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 DOW GREAT STUFF CHEVROLET SS – 13TH IN STANDINGS
"I think every racer loves Bristol Motor Speedway. It's a fun little bullring. In the spring, the day race pretty much turned into a night race because of the weather and it worked out well for our team. We ended up having a really decent run there, so I have been looking forward to this race for a while. It's the type of track where you just have to stay in the race the whole time and fight until the end."

KYLE LARSON, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET SS – 14TH IN STANDINGS
“I’ll be looking for a big turnaround this weekend at Bristol after a disappointing race at Michigan. We had a really good car last weekend. and have had fast Target Chevy’s just about every weekend. The team is excited about being back at Bristol and think we have a really good shot there. I had my first top-10 finish there, and I think we are a much stronger team now. We’ll use what we learned from our first good run at Bristol earlier in the year, and do everything we can to try and get a win. We want to be in the Chase, and a win is really all we can do now.”

PAUL MENARD, NO. 27 SERTA/MENARDS CHEVROLET SS – 17TH IN STANDINGS
ON THE RACING GROOVE: "They really haven't changed the track in a couple of years, so it's going to be where it was in the last few races. We're just up by the fence and with the ride-height rule and more aero this year, the cars handle better so you can run lower longer, but as the tires wear and the pace slows down you'll want to move to the top."

JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 MCDONALD’S CHEVROLET SS – 19TH IN STANDINGS
“I’m looking forward to going back to Bristol this week. We had a really good car there in the Spring, running in the top-five, when another car cut an oil-line and crashed us with less than 50 laps to go. I feel like we had a car capable of winning that race and I hope we can go back this time and run just as strong. The Bristol Night Race is just one of those races that is unlike any other. It is like going back to our roots racing on a Saturday night under the lights, always a lot of fun.”

AJ ALLMENDINGER, NO. 47 BUSH’S BEANS CHEVROLET SS – 22ND IN STANDINGS
“I think Bristol Motor Speedway is such a unique race track. I love the Bristol night race so much because there is such great energy. It is summer night racing at its finest. It’s what the sport was based off of. You get so many people coming out for that race and it’s really cool to look up and see everyone. There’s flash bulbs going off, just all sorts of stuff going on. It’s just a cool race, but it is a grueling night. You are in for a long night and you know it whether the car is good or bad. You are in for a fight all night long. It makes it tough. You’ve got to be physically and mentally strong for that race. I’ve had some success there. I thought this year we were really fast when we went there earlier this season. When I hit pit road, we got caught pitting as the yellow come out. It was some bad luck there. Hopefully, we can go there, learn and have a good run. It’s such a cool place especially at night. Even the prerace, they play Proud to be an American and that’s really cool. It’s just a fun night where there are fireworks on and off the track.”

KURT BUSCH, NO. 41 HAAS AUTOMATION CHEVROLET SS – 23RD IN STANDINGS
“Bristol is one of those tracks that I get a little extra pumped up for. For me, I think that feeling gets a little stronger when you’re talking about the night race at Bristol. There’s just something special about that race. I knew it before I ever made it to the big-league level of the Sprint Cup Series but, the first time I was able to experience the night race as a competitor, it’s almost indescribable. It’s a place that gives you a big adrenaline rush. You can literally feel the energy around the track from the competitors and the fans that are just excited for 500 laps of racing at Bristol. There’s really nothing quite like it.”

CASEY MEARS, NO. 13 GEICO CHEVROLET SS – 24TH IN STANDINGS
"I'm looking forward to returning to Bristol because the No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS was strong there in the spring. We feel we have a really good package going back, so it should be fun. I always like racing at Bristol, and in 2012 we were on the Pole, so we're focused on running well this weekend and continuing our run of strong finishes."

MARTIN TRUEX, JR., NO. 78 FURNITURE ROW CHEVROLET SS – 26TH IN STANDINGS
“Bristol is like any other racetrack, if your car is good you’re going to have success and you’re going to like the place. But I do love racing at Bristol and have always enjoyed that place. I had a lot of good runs and also bad runs there but either way it never changed my opinion of the track. We go there now and run two and three wide, sometimes four – it’s just a ton of fun. We had a pretty good run going at Bristol in the spring race but a late mechanical issue ruined the day. Considering what happened to us at the last Bristol race and last week in Michigan (collected in early accident) it's time for the luck factor to turn in our favor. Our No. 78 car will be wrapped in the World Vision colors at Bristol and Atlanta. The car will promote a donation via a text for clean water for the African country of Zambia. A $10 donation will provide clean water for one child for four years.”

DANICA PATRICK, NO. 10 GODADDY CHEVROLET SS – 28TH IN STANDINGS
“I’ve liked Bristol since I went there the first time. I remember when I set foot onto that track, it was the day before, it was load-in day and I looked out there and you’re standing on the straightaway, but it sure seems like a corner. It’s a very cool track and a spectacle for the fans. I feel like it’s always the one that everyone says, ‘I want to come see a Bristol race.’ It’s always entertaining there for the fans and, hopefully, we can put on another good show for them this week.”

JUSTIN ALLGAIER, NO. 51 BRANDT PROFESSIONAL AGRICULTURE CHEVROLET SS – 29TH IN STANDINGS
“I’m can’t wait to get back to the short track at Bristol [Motor Speedway]. I really enjoy racing there and I have a win in the Nationwide Series, which makes me like it even more. We are going there for the second time this season so Steve [Addington] has a good notebook from the last race to work from. I’m hoping for a solid weekend and to avoid the accidents."

MICHAEL ANNETT, NO. 7 PILOT FLYING J CHEVROLET SS – 30TH IN STANDINGS
"Last time out at Bristol, our splitter hit the track for what seemed like the last 200 laps. We've made some tweaks to that setup, so I'm looking forward to seeing how they change the feel. The Night Race at Bristol was always appointment viewing every summer when I was a kid, so to go there and actually take part in the event will be a thrill."

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: 13
Poles: 12
Laps led: 3363
Top-five finishes: 58
Top-10 finishes: 126

CHEVROLET IN NASCAR SPRINT CUP CUMULATIVE STATISTICS:
Total Chevrolet race wins: 731 (1949 – to date); (2,411 possible = 30.0%)
Poles Won to Date: 659
Laps Lead to Date: 217,023
Top-Five Finishes to Date: 3,673
Top-10 Finishes to Date: 7,507

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

GM: 1,066
Chevrolet: 731
Pontiac: 155
Oldsmobile: 115
Buick: 65

Ford: 726
Ford: 626
Mercury: 96
Lincoln: 4

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

Toyota: 65

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