Mobil 1 Team News and Notes
Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the Penske Racing No. 77 Mobil 1 Dodge Charger, has a total of five Cup Series career starts at Martinsville Speedway with one top-15 result. Hornish has an average finish of 29th at the paperclip-shaped half-mile oval with a best effort of 13th (March, 2010). In addition, Hornish has one Camping World Truck Series start at the Virginia short track, where he finished ninth overall (October, 2008).
Hornish has 17 starts at NASCAR short-track venues, with a total of two top-10 and three top-15 finishes in Cup Series competition. He has an average start of 29.5 at venues less than one mile in length, and an average finish of 27.8 with a top result of sixth, which came at Richmond International Raceway (September, 2009).
Mobil 1 crew chief Travis Geisler offers fans a glimpse into car setup for each racetrack on the NASCAR Cup Series circuit at washingtonpost.com. Geisler reports that at Martinsville, turns are tight and cornering is difficult. There will be a lot of bumping and banging in the race and drivers ideally pit for fuel only, because it’s very tough to pass. Learn more at http://wapo.st/c0BvwX.
Hornish will appear at the Speed Channel stage for MRN’s “At Full Speed” program on Sunday, October 24 from 9:20 – 9:30 a.m. EDT.
Sam Hornish Jr. Quote
Martinsville Speedway is one of the toughest tracks on the NASCAR circuit. What have you learned about racing there?
“At Martinsville, you just have to stay out of trouble, try to keep your nose clean and keep the brakes on the car as much as you can. It’s definitely a tough track, but I feel like I am learning more and more of what I need to do each time we go there.
“I’ve been to all the tracks enough now that there have been good points that we’ve had during a race. I try to tell myself that if I run well like I have before, and don’t do some of the things that didn’t work out, we’re going to run inside the top 10, if not better.”
What do you feel is a key factor to success at Martinsville Speedway?
“It’s really about not overdriving at Martinsville. Especially during qualifying, the track seems to bait you to drive in that extra 10 feet. When you do that, it may not feel bad, but it shows up on the stopwatch. That 10 feet can be the difference between starting 10th and starting 20th so you have to be aware of what you’re doing at all times.”
Crew Chief Travis Geisler Quote
What are your thoughts on this weekend’s race at Martinsville Speedway?
“Martinsville is one of the most demanding races on the schedule from all aspects. The car is asked to do a lot of things in a short amount of time on the flat half-mile track. That puts a lot of stress on the brakes, the drivetrain and the driver. We had a top-15 finish at Martinsville in the spring and we look forward to another strong result there this weekend with the Mobil 1 Dodge.”