Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes
NSCS Race Advance
Sunday, Sept. 18, 2011
DODGE IN THE CHASE
· Dodge is making its seventh appearance in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and has six wins in Chase races.
· Kurt Busch is making his fourth Chase appearance driving a Dodge and sixth overall.
· Brad Keselowski is making his first appearance in the Chase for the Sprint Cup. Keselowski is the sixth different Dodge driver to make the Chase (Jeremy Mayfield, Ryan Newman, Rusty Wallace, Kasey Kahne and Kurt Busch).
· The last time two Penske Racing Dodges qualified for the Chase to the Sprint Cup was in 2005 with Rusty Wallace and Ryan Newman.
· Dodge has not won a championship since the Chase format was introduced in 2004. Kurt Busch won the 2004 title with another team before moving to Penske in 2006.
2011 Chase to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Standings
1. Kyle Busch 2012 7. Kurt Busch -9
2. Kevin Harvick -0 8. Ryan Newman -9
3. Jeff Gordon -3 9. Tony Stewart -12
4. Matt Kenseth -6 10. Dale Earnhardt Jr. -12
5. Carl Edwards -9 11. Brad Keselowski -12
6. Jimmie Johnson -9 12. Denny Hamlin -12
THE DODGE BOYS
· Dodge has 211 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories.
· Dodge has four victories this season, three by Brad Keselowski (Kansas, Pocono and Bristol) and one by Kurt Busch (Infineon). Dodge’s most recent win came at Bristol Motor Speedway. Keselowski led 89 of the 500 laps en route to victory.
· Dodge teams have posted 51 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 AT CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY
· Dodge has recorded one win at the 1.5-mile, D-shaped Chicagoland Speedway oval (Ryan Newman – 2003).
· Dodge has earned one pole at Chicagoland Speedway (Ryan Newman – 2002).
2011 DODGE SPRINT CUP REWIND
· Race 1: Kurt Busch won the Bud Shootout and a Gatorade Duel during Speedweeks.
· Races 12-15: Dodge earned four consecutive poles.
· Race 13: Brad Keselowski won at Kansas; first Dodge win of the season.
· Race 16: Busch dominated at Infineon for first win of the season and first road-course victory of his career.
· Race 21: Keselowski, racing with a broken left ankle, earned his second win of the season at Pocono Raceway.
· Race 23: Keselowski moved up to 12th in Cup driver standings.
· Race 24: Keselowski won his third race of the season. Moved up to 11th in points. Current No. 1 wild card driver.
· Race 25: Busch and Keselowski clinched spots in the Chase.
· Race 26: Busch seeded 7th, Keselowski 11th for Chase.
DID YOU KNOW?
· Dodge’s Brad Keselowski has set Sprint Cup career bests this season in wins (3), top fives (6) and top 10s (10).
· Dodge’s Kurt Busch won the first-ever Chase race, the 2004 Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
2011 SPRINT CUP SERIES SEASON BEST
· Kurt Busch Start: 1st (Kansas, Pocono & Michigan)
Finish: 1st (Infineon)
· Brad Keselowski Start: 1st (Charlotte)
Finish: 1st (Kansas, Pocono, Bristol)
· Robby Gordon Start: 30th (Daytona)
Finish: 16th (Daytona)
KURT BUSCH – INSIDE THE CHASE NUMBERS
· Qualified for the 2011 Chase for the Sprint Cup – seeded seventh.
· Competing in the Chase for the Sprint Cup for the sixth time: 2004 – Champion, 2005 – 10th, 2007 – seventh, 2009 – fourth and 2010 – 10th
· Has competed in 68 Chase races since 2004, 50 of those have been in a Dodge.
· Career Chase stats: Two wins, three poles, 16 top-five and 34 top-10 finishes.
· Busch has recorded eight career wins at the 10 tracks hosting Chase races (Loudon – 3, Martinsville – 1, Homestead – 1. Texas – 1 and Charlotte – 1).
FROM THE DODGE ENGINEER: HOWARD COMSTOCK
“Chicagoland Speedway has hosted a mid-July, Saturday night, Sprint Cup race for the last 3 years and now we’re visiting there for, not only the first race of the Chase, but a mid-September, Sunday afternoon, event. That’s a lot different than what we’ve been accustomed to, so engineers from every organization in the series will be busy this week taking the last several years of notes and applying some kind of offset for the radically different conditions we’ll see in Chicago this week. Cooler air temperatures in September will mean better grip levels in the track surface and more horsepower from the engines. But how will a now-afternoon event offset those two advantages? That’s some of what our engineers will be working on this week.”
DODGE MOTORSPORTS QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“It’s a pride thing. To get both Penske Dodges into this Chase is really huge for the organization, huge for Dodge. It’s huge for the guys that work back in that fab shop, work in that paint shop, and work in every little department we have. They take pride in working on these cars during the week. We get to come out here and work on ‘em. Everybody sees us, but they don’t see those guys putting in that effort back at the shop.”
Steve Addington, crew chief, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge
“We always get to answer questions that maybe we’re behind the eight-ball by only having two (Penske) Dodges out there but we put both of ‘em in the Chase. Both guys now have a shot at the championship so it’s been a great, solid season for us.”
Kurt Busch (No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T)
“Well, I feel like a one-year old that got his first box of crayons, you know, just amazed and happy to have ‘em. It’s great. Everything is fresh, new and a lot of positive momentum. No matter what happens in the Chase, it’s still an honor to be in it.”
Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T)
“It’s a tremendous accomplishment to get both of our Penske Racing Dodges in the Chase this year. I am proud of the entire organization, as it was a true team effort in getting to this point. I would also like to thank Shell, Pennzoil, Miller Lite, Dodge and all of our terrific partners for their support. We are looking forward to getting to Chicago and competing for a championship.”
Roger Penske (Chairman, Penske Corporation)