DODGE AT DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY
· Dodge has nine Sprint Cup wins at Daytona International Speedway (four in the Daytona 500 and five in the Coke Zero 400).
· Dodge’s Kurt Busch earned victories at the season opening Bud Shootout and Gatorade Duel at Daytona earlier this season. Busch is seeking his first Sprint Cup point’s win on a restrictor plate track. He has three runner-up finishes in 21 starts at Daytona.
· Dodge has earned nine poles at Daytona. Five of the nine have been during the July event.
DODGE NEWS AND NOTES
· Dodge won its second Sprint Cup Series race of the season last weekend at Infineon Raceway and the second Cup Series win in the last four races.
· Dodge’s Kurt Busch is the only Sprint Cup Series driver who has been in the top-10 in the driver point standings all season (16 races).
THE DODGE BOYS
· Dodge has 209 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories.
· Dodge’s most recent win came last weekend at Infineon Raceway. Kurt Busch led 76 of the 110 laps en route to victory in the Save Mart 350. The victory was the second for Dodge in 2011.
· Dodge teams have posted 49 victories since the manufacturer’s return to NASCAR’s premier series in 2001 after being out of the sport since 1977.
· Dodge has posted wins each season since its return in 2001 including seven wins twice (2002 and 2006).
· Dodge claimed two Sprint Cup victories in 2010.
· A Dodge has started from the pole in four of the last five Sprint Cup races – Brad Keselowski (Charlotte) and Kurt Busch (Kansas, Pocono and Michigan).
DID YOU KNOW
· Dodge’s Kurt Busch has finished in the top 10 in eight of the last 10 Sprint Cup races at Daytona and has the fifth- best average finish (13.8) in the last six Sprint Cup races at the 2.5-mile track. In 42-career Sprint Cup restrictor-plate races, he has 16 top-five and 25 top-10 finishes.
· Dodge’s Brad Keselowski earned his first Sprint Cup Series win at a restrictor-plate track (Talladega – 2009).
· The 2011 Daytona 500 produced a record number of leaders (22) and lead changes (74). It also produced a record number of cautions (16).
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
· Kurt Busch has led 274 laps in the last four Sprint Cup races: (Kansas (152), Pocono (37), Michigan (9) and Infineon (76). In the first 12 races, he led 123 laps with a best finish of fourth (Charlotte). He’s finished outside the top 10 only once in the last five races (Michigan – 11th).
FROM THE ENGINEER
“The Daytona 500 in February was fast, the Amp Energy 500 in April at Talladega was faster. Who knows how fast this restrictor plate race will be. The rules package in effect for Sprint Cup restrictor plate tracks this season is geared for faster races than we’ve seen in more than 10 years. That may not have been the original intent but it’s certainly been the result. Teams will be very busy this week trying to find grip on a typically slick, Daytona in July, track to keep up with somebody in the garage that’s found the speed we saw at both restrictor plate tracks this spring.” Howard Comstock, Dodge Motorsports Engineering
ODDS AND ENDS
· Dodge’s Brad Keselowski and Kurt Busch have each earned a Sprint Cup pole and race win this season.
· Brad Keselowski is one of three drivers outside the top-12 in the driver point standings with a win.
· Kurt Busch has a current streak of 10 consecutive years with a race win – the second longest active streak behind Tony Stewart (12 years).
· Kurt Busch has gained five positions in the Sprint Cup driver standings in the last five races.
· Since 2005, Busch has the fourth-best driver rating at Daytona (96.4).
2011 SPRINT CUP SERIES SEASON BEST
· Kurt Busch Start: 1st (Kansas, Pocono & Michigan) Finish: 1st (Infineon)
· Brad Keselowski Start: 1st (Charlotte) Finish: 1st (Kansas)
· Robby Gordon Start: 30th (Daytona) Finish: 16th (Daytona)
DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY BEST
· Kurt Busch Start: 3rd (2011) Finish: 2nd (2003, 2005 & 2008)
· Brad Keselowski Start: 16th (2011) Finish: 24th (2009)
· Robby Gordon Start: 3rd (2003) Finish; 6th (2003 & 2008)
ON TWO-CAR DRAFTING AT DAYTONA “We’ll see how the track has matured since the repave and what the grip level will be like. It’s going to be hot and slick because it’s July in Florida. We’ll see if we can still hook up in that two-car draft. The grip level was extremely high in February. I anticipate the grip to be good this time around. If so, you’ll see two-car drafting just like we had in February.” Kurt Busch, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T
DODGE MOTORSPORTS QUOTE OF THE WEEK “With the Speedweeks that we had in February, we’re excited to head back to Daytona because Kurt is such a great plate racer. We won the (Gatorade) 125. We won the (Budweiser) Shootout. We want to get Kurt a restrictor-plate point’s win. The restrictor-plate engines at Penske are awesome. The guys are working really hard on the cars. I feel good about it. I feel like we can go win. Our testing is paying dividends and everyone on this Shell/Pennzoil Dodge team is working their butt off. We just need to keep the momentum going and go get us a win at Daytona.” Steve Addington, crew chief, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T
DODGE QUOTES “We certainly want to finally win us one of these things (restrictor-plate race), that’s for sure. But, we still have to keep focus on this season and what it’s going to take to move forward in the effort to make the Chase this year. We need to win races because that will be so important come September. At the same time, we have to stay consistent in posting the top-five finishes and top-10s. The bottom line is that we have to go after those race wins as hard as we can, but still exercise conservatism, if you want to call it that. Unlike the guys back there in 15th to 20th in the points who can gamble on fuel mileage and roll the dice out there in every race, we have to look at it as the big goal of completing all the laps and getting the best possible finish we can in every race.” Kurt Busch, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T
“Our Miller Lite Dodge was really fast at Daytona in February. We’re bringing really fast cars to the race track and we feel that we have a shot to win every week.” Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T