Ricky Carmichael, No. 4 Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado, Bully Hill Vineyards 200 Preview

Ricky Carmichael No. 4 Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado Event Preview Fact Sheet  

Event/Date:          Bully Hill Vineyards 200 – April 22, 2011

Venue:                   Nashville Superspeedway – Lebanon, Tenn.   

American Muscle

This Week’s Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado … Ricky Carmichael will pilot chassis TMS-013 from the Turner Motorsports NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) stable in Friday night’s Bully Hill Vineyards 200 at Nashville Superspeedway. Built new in 2010, this truck was the workhorse of the Monster Energy fleet last fall. Carmichael raced the same Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado last year at Chicagoland Speedway (St. 13, Fn. 28), Kentucky Speedway (St. 5, Fn. 9), Las Vegas Motor Speedway (St. 8, Fn. 9) and Homestead Miami Speedway (St. 22, Fn. 21).

* Nashville Numbers … Carmichael has two NCWTS starts at Nashville Superspeedway and has notched 15th-place finishes in both races. The 15-time AMA National Champion has logged a 16.5 starting average, and completed all but two of the 300 total laps (99.3 percent) run over those two events.  

* Martinsville Minutes … Three weeks ago, at Martinsville Speedway, Carmichael started 20th and finished eighth in the Kroger 250. The 31-year-old driver raced inside the top five for much of the day, led 36 laps and matched his best finish of the four-race-young 2011 season. Meanwhile, Carmichael jumped seven spots and rocketed from 19th to 12th in the driver point standings. 

* In a Nutshell … The 2011 season marks Carmichael’s second year competing on a full-time basis in the NCWTS. Since making his series debut 47 races ago, the father of twins has gone on to earn three top-five and 13 top-10 finishes. Over those same 47 races, The Tallahassee, Fla., resident has logged a 14.3 average start, a 16.9 average finish, completed 91.7 percent of the laps run and earned just over $630,000 in purse money.

* Welcome Aboard… Turner Motorsports and Monster Energy are pleased to feature Daily’s and Quik Mart Convenience Stores on the lower-rear quarter panels of the No. 4 Monster Energy Silverado this weekend in Nashville. Daily’s Convenience Stores have always been locally owned and operated with over 90 stores throughout middle Tennessee and Kentucky. Daily’s is owned by Tri Star Energy, which is a partnership created between Kimbro Oil and The Parman Corporation. Quik Mart Convenience Stores operate 40 stores in middle Tennessee and northern Alabama.

* Remembering Beau …For the second week in a row, Turner Motorsports entries will carry decals honoring the life of former ARCA Series competitor and Turner Motorsports employee Beau Slocumb who lost his heroic battle with cancer two weekends ago. Slocumb made four ARCA starts in 2009, logging an impressive 7.0 starting average combined with a solid 11.2 average finish. The 26-year-old driver logged a pair of top 10s over those four starts including a career-best fifth-place finish at Kansas Speedway. Slocumb began his career racing Legends cars and climbed the professional ladder through the late model ranks, earning 131 feature wins in Legends and late model competition, eventually making his mark in the ARCA series. He is survived by his wife Jessica, parents Burke “Buster” and Jeanne, brothers Seth and Daniel and sister Maggie. Memorials will be graciously accepted the Ryan Newman Foundation, Hospice of Iredell County (N.C.) or Hospice of Central Georgia.

* Got My First Real Six String… Carmichael and his Turner Motorsports teammates will take a private tour of the Gibson Guitar Factory in Nashville on Thursday afternoon.  The home of Gibson electric guitars, ‘Gibson USA’ was built in ‘Music City’ in 1974.  

* See the Monster Energy Silverado … The Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado show truck will make three stops in the Nashville area this week. The No. 4 machine will visit Daily’s on White Bridge Road in Nashville on Wednesday from 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. and head to Quik Mart on Nashville Highway in Columbia the following day for another 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. show. On Friday, the Monster Energy machine will visit a second Daily’s location from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.  The Friday pit stop will take place at Daily’s Store No. 6641 located at 3696 Bell Road in Nashville.

* Up to Speed … Live coverage of the Bully Hill Vineyards 200 from Nashville Superspeedway will be televised live on SPEED Fri., April 22 beginning at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. The race will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and Sirius XM Satellite Radio Channel 128. Qualifying for the fifth of 25 races on the 2011 NCWTS schedule will be televised on SPEED the same day at 5:30 p.m. EDT.

RICKY CARMICHAEL QUOTES You finished 15th in both races at Nashville last year. Talk about your two starts at Nashville Superspeedway. “I adapted to the track very quickly. The spring race last year was the first time I’d ever been there. We were really, really good as soon as we unloaded. We were sixth on the speed sheet after the first practice so I was pretty excited. We were racing against guys like Kyle (Busch) and Kevin (Harvick) so to be that fast, right off the truck, felt great. Unfortunately, I cut a left-rear tire right away during the second practice and wrecked the truck. We had to go to a back-up truck and it never got much better after that.

“I was really excited to go back for the summer race because of how much I liked the track but we really struggled, not only as a team but as an organization. We were just off. I finished 15th and my teammate James Buescher finished 16th. I’m looking forward to going back this weekend. I’ve got a new crew chief with Mark Rette this year and he ran really well last year at Nashville with Justin Lofton so I’m sure we’ll be trying some different things. I’m excited. The Monster Energy Team has a lot of momentum coming off of Martinsville. We want to carry that through Nashville, get another solid finish, and keep moving forward.”

Nashville is fairly unique. It’s bigger than a mile and not quite a mile-and-a-half. Does that present a different type of challenge from the driver’s seat? “Nashville is a mile-and-a-third, it’s concrete not asphalt, so the racing is a little different. You can feel like you’ll have a ton of grip and then the truck can very easily get out from underneath you and spin out. For me, there’s a very fine line. The race track will be really green during the first practice so you need to pay close attention to what your truck is doing during the second session to know where you’re going to be for the race. The track changes a lot from the first to second practice and especially after the Nationwide teams lay some rubber down on the track.”

What’s the key to getting around Nashville? “Qualifying well and maintaining track position goes a long way at Nashville. You can’t be tight in the center of the turn. You really have to keep the truck turning. If you get tight in the corners, you lose so much speed that you can’t keep up on the straightaways. If the truck is handling the way you need it to, you can really keep it wound up in the corner to get a good run off the exit. It’s a bottom-feeder type of race track. You won’t see many people on the high side. The bottom lane is going to be the preferred groove so you have to concentrate on getting a good run off the corner to be able to get your nose underneath someone to make a pass.”  

With the exception of Phoenix, there’s been a three-week break between Darlington, Martinsville and Nashville. How do you stay focused and in tune so you’ve got the right mind frame when you get to the track? “I just try to stay as mentally prepared as I can. It stinks when you start getting in a grove, have a good run, and then you’ve got three weeks in between races. I’ve been trying to get my mind set and focus on my game plan for the weekend so we can put together a good finish. If we could leave Nashville inside the top 10 in points, then that would be a great night for us.”

 Follow Ricky Carmichael at: Rickycarmichael.com Twitter.com/RickyCarmichael Facebook.com/RickyCarmichael http://www.facebook.com/TurnerMotorsports http://twitter.com/TurnerMotorspts  

About Turner Motorsports: Turner Motorsports, LLC, established in 1999, is in the midst of its sophomore season of NASCAR competition. Owned by Texas businessman Steve Turner, the organization has expanded in 2011 from a two-truck operation in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) to become the largest stand-alone multi-series team in NASCAR’s top-tier touring series. Turner Motorsports operates out of an 110,000 square-foot state-of-the art facility in Mooresville, N.C., and will compete with three entries in the Camping World Truck Series and four entries in the NASCAR Nationwide Series.  The team boasts an all-star driver line-up that includes Kasey Kahne, Mark Martin, Jason Leffler, Reed Sorenson, Justin Allgaier, Ricky Carmichael, James Buescher, Brad Sweet and Brandon McReynolds. The Chevrolet-backed team has created alliances with General Motors’ powerhouse teams Hendrick Motorsports, which will provide engine support for both its NNS and NCWTS programs, Kevin Harvick Inc. for body and aero support, and Earnhardt Technology Group for drive train and suspension technology assistance. Turner Motorsports’ marketing partners include Dollar General, Great Clips, Monster Energy, BRANDT, Rexall, Exide, AccuDoc Solutions, Wolfpack Rentals, Fraternal Order of Eagles and ABF Freight. For more information on Turner Motorsports, visit www.turnermotorsportsllc.com.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.


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