Ricky Carmichael, No. 4 Monster Energy Chevy Silverado, Kroger 200 Preview

Ricky Carmichael

No. 4 Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado

Event Preview Fact Sheet

American Muscle

Event/Date: Kroger 200 – October 29, 2011

Venue: Martinsville Speedway – Martinsville, Va.

· This Week’s Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado … Ricky Carmichael will pilot chassis TMS-018 from the Turner Motorsports NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) stable in Saturday’s Kroger 200 at Martinsville Speedway. This is the same truck Carmichael raced at Martinsville in April of this season where he started 20th, led twice for 36 laps and went on to finish eighth. All totaled, this truck has seen action five times this season including Phoenix International Raceway (St. 28, Fn. 31), Martinsville, (St. 20, Fn. 8), Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis (St. 27, Fn. 19) and most recently at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (St. 22, Fn. 19). Built new in 2010, the same truck also saw action last fall at Martinsville Speedway where the 15-time AMA National Champion started sixth and finished ninth.

· Martinsville Minutes … Carmichael has four NCWTS starts at Martinsville Speedway. The 31-year-old racer has logged a 16.8 starting average, a 14th-place average finish and has completed all but 11 laps (98.9 percent) run over those four events. He has notched three top 10s after posting a career-best eighth-place finish in April at the tricky, .526-mile southern Virginia race track.

· Talladega Totals … Carmichael and the Monster Energy Team turned in a season-best fourth-place finish in last Saturday’s Coca-Cola 250 Powered by fred’s at Talladega Superspeedway. The third-year NCWTS driver raced with the leaders all afternoon, stayed out of trouble and, when the money was on the line, demonstrated his superspeedway prowess by earning his first top-five finish of the 2011 season. The spirited effort also afforded Carmichael one more spot in the NCWTS driver points, propelling him from 15th to 14th in the standings. Over the last three races, Carmichael has powered from 18th to his current position in the points.

· In a Nutshell … The 2011 season marks Carmichael’s second year competing on a full-time basis and third overall in the NCWTS. Since making his series debut 65 races ago, he has gone on to earn four top-five and 17 top-10 finishes. Over those same 65 races, the motocross legend has logged a 14.8 average start, a 16.7 average finish, led 40 laps, completed 91.6 percent of the laps run and earned just over of $840,000 in purse money.

· Turner Truck Totals … In 22 NCWTS races in 2011, TMS entries have earned 13 top-five and 29 top-10 finishes. James Buescher leads the way with 18 top 10s and is second in points. With the exception of this year’s first race at Martinsville, Chicagoland and Las Vegas, Buescher has finished inside the top 10 in every race in which he has competed in the division this season. Carmichael has logged one top five and six top 10s and is 14th in the standings. Blake Feese finished fourth and Ryan Newman was fifth in Atlanta. Mark Martin finished seventh in the No. 32 machine at Pocono while Brad Sweet drove the same truck for the first eight races of the year, logging a pair of top-10 results.

· Get to the Point(s) … Carmichael jumped from 15th to 14th in the NCWTS driver point standings after notching his first top-five finish of the season last weekend and is now 23 points behind 13th-place David Starr. Buescher trails current point leader Austin Dillon by three points with three races remaining on the 2011 schedule. While Blake Feese has made just seven starts in 2011, he is 27th in points. The No. 32 machine is assured a spot on Saturday’s starting grid by virtue of being 16th in the NCWTS owner point standings.

· Welcome Aboard … Turner Motorsports and Monster Energy are pleased to welcome Apple Market to the lower-rear quarter panels of the No. 4 Monster Energy Silverado this weekend in Martinsville. Workman Oil Company is the operator of 45 convenience stores under the “Apple Market” banner in central and southwest Virginia and Eastern Kentucky. The company also operates as a franchisee for Subway, Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken, Krystal, and Blimpie. Workman Oil Company also has a proprietary food service operation in 13 Apple Market convenience stores under the Granny Smith’s name.

· Nationwide Notes … In 31 NASCAR Nationwide Series races in 2011, TMS-fielded teams have notched three wins, 21 top-five and 60 top-10 finishes. TMS’s No. 32 Dollar General team maintained seventh in owner’s points after Brian Vickers finished 10th two weekends ago at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Justin Allgaier, driver of the No. 31 Brandt Chevrolet, was seventh in the final rundown at Charlotte and jumped from fifth to fourth in the driver point standings. Jason Leffler was credited with 11th in Charlotte and held on to sixth in points. The drivers and teams of the NASCAR Nationwide Series have this weekend off before returning to the track the next weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. ESPN2’s live coverage of the O’Reilly Auto Parts Challenge will be televised on Saturday, Nov. 5 beginning at noon Eastern Daylight Time. The race will also be broadcast on the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90. Qualifying for Round 32 of the 2011 Nationwide Series Championship will be televised live on SPEED Friday, Nov. 4 at 6:30 p.m. EDT.

· Up to Speed … Live coverage of the Kroger 200 will take the green flag Saturday, Oct. 29 beginning at 1:30 p.m. EDT. The race will be televised live on SPEED and broadcast on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90. Qualifying for Round 23 of the 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Championship will be televised on SPEED the same day at 10:30 a.m. EDT.


You had a great run last time the Truck Series visited Martinsville.

“We really did. I didn’t qualify as well as I had hoped but when the green flag dropped, the Monster Energy Chevy was on a rail. We played the track position game and that certainly helped but at the end of the day, we still had a fast truck. We led a bunch of laps and definitely had better than an eighth-place truck but we ran out of tires at the end of the race so that set us back a little bit. It was a good day so I’m really looking forward to this weekend.”

Looking back on the last three races, you have to be encouraged about where the program stands and where it’s going.

“The last three races have been great and I think that speaks volumes about the direction of this program. We were fast at Kentucky and finished sixth. We were in a great position to finish in the top five at Las Vegas until we got wrecked but Doug (crew chief Doug George) and the team did a great job fixing the truck on pit road and we battled back to finish 12th. Talladega was an awesome race for us. We just kind of hung out all day and when it was time to go, I hooked up with my teammate (James Buescher) and we reeled in the leaders and had a shot at winning the race. That’s all you can ask for is an opportunity and we definitely had one last week. If we can duplicate what we did at Martinsville in the spring, I think we’ll have a good shot at another top five. We’ve gained a lot of ground in the points over the last three races so hopefully, we can keep on rolling this weekend.”

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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