Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes
NSCS Race Advance AAA Texas 500
Texas Motor Speedway
Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011
DODGE AT TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
. Dodge has three wins at TMS (Kurt Busch – 2009, Kasey Kahne – 2006 and Ryan Newman – 2003).
. Dodge earned three consecutive poles at TMS (Ryan Newman made it a sweep in 2005 and Kasey Kahne started from the pole in the spring race in 2006).
. Dodge has the only Sprint Cup win from the pole at the 1.5-mile track (Kasey Kahne – 2006).
THE DODGE BOYS
. Dodge has 212 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories.
. Dodge has five victories this season, three by Brad Keselowski (Kansas, Pocono and Bristol) and two by Kurt Busch (Infineon, Dover). Dodge’s most recent win came at Dover. Busch led five times for 90 of the 400 laps.
. Dodge teams have recorded 52 victories since the manufacturer’s return to NASCAR’s premier series in 2001 after being out of the sport since 1977.
CHASE FAST FACTS
. Dodge’s Brad Keselowski qualified third and finished 17th at Martinsville last weekend. He is fourth in the Chase standings, 27 points behind the leader.
. Dodge’s Kurt Busch qualified eighth and finished 14th at Martinsville. He remains eighth in the NSCS driver standings, 58 points behind the leader.
. Brad Keselowski’s average finish in the seven Chase races in 2011 is 9.57.
. Kurt Busch’s average finish in the seven Chase races is 15.0.
. The last time two Penske Racing Dodges qualified for the Chase was 2005 (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 before moving to Penske Racing in 2006.
. Dodge drivers have won four Sprint Cup championships: David Pearson (1966), Bobby Isaac (1970), Richard Petty (1974, 1975).
TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY STATS OF THE WEEK
. Kurt Busch won the 2009 Dickies 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. It was the largest margin of victory (25.686 seconds) since the inception of timing and scoring in 1993. He has finished inside the top five in four of his last five TMS starts.
. Brad Keselowski earned his best Texas Motor Speedway finish of 14th at the spring event in 2008. He led 32 laps in this year’s spring event and finished 18th.
2011 CHASE to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Standings (After 33 of 36 Events) 1. Carl Edwards 2,273 7. Kyle Busch -57 2. Tony Stewart -8 8. Kurt Busch -58 3. Kevin Harvick -21 9. Dale Earnhardt Jr. -73 4. Brad Keselowski -27 10. Jeff Gordon -76 5. Matt Kenseth -36 11. Denny Hamlin -80 6. Jimmie Johnson -43 12. Ryan Newman -89
DODGE IN THE CHASE: TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
. 2004: Texas Motor Speedway was not a part of the Chase. Two Dodge drivers were in that first Chase – Ryan Newman and Jeremy Mayfield.
. 2005: Dodge was represented by three drivers in the Chase – Ryan Newman, Rusty Wallace and Jeremy Mayfield. Newman started from the pole and finished 25th. Wallace ended up 26th and Mayfield 35th.
. 2006: Kasey Kahne was the lone Dodge driver in the Chase. He qualified fourth, led twice, but finished 33rd with engine issues.
. 2007: Kurt Busch started sixth, led twice and finished eighth in his Penske Dodge. . 2008: There were no Dodges in the 2008 Chase field.
. 2009: Kurt Busch, started third and led 89 laps en route to victory at TMS, his first and only win at the speedway. Kasey Kahne, the second Dodge driver in the Chase, started second and finished 33rd.
. 2010: Kurt Busch, the only Dodge driver in the Chase, qualified sixth and finished 24th.
TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY STATS OF THE WEEK . Kurt Busch won the 2009 Dickies 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. It was the largest margin of victory (25.686 seconds) since the inception of timing and scoring in 1993. He has finished inside the top five in four of his last five TMS starts. . Brad Keselowski earned his best Texas Motor Speedway finish of 14th at the spring event in 2008. He led 32 laps in this year’s spring event and finished 18th.
2011 SPRINT CUP SERIES SEASON BEST . Kurt Busch Start: 1st (Kansas1, Pocono1 & Michigan1) Finish: 1st (Infineon, Dover2) . Brad Keselowski Start: 1st (Charlotte1) Finish: 1st (Kansas1, Pocono2, Bristol2) . Robby Gordon Start: 30th (Daytona1) Finish: 16th (Daytona1)
FROM THE DODGE ENGINEER: ” “It’s seems like culture shock to go from 95 mph average laps at Martinsville one week to nearly 195 mph average laps at Texas the next week, but the series does it twice a year, every year. Engineering problems like managing brake heat at Martinsville certainly won’t be an issue at Texas where drivers are at wide-open throttle for about 22 of the 30 seconds it takes to make one lap. And even with that much wide-open throttle time in a lap at Texas, engineers still won’t be working on wide-open throttle issues. They will be focused on how they can whittle down those other eight seconds where the driver can’t go flat out. Handling in the very fast corners of Texas will trump everything else and the race will be won there.” Howard Comstock, Dodge Engineering
DODGE MOTORSPORTS QUOTE OF THE WEEK “We put ourselves in position to have a great day at Martinsville on Sunday, but that wasn’t in the cards. That’s what happens late in a race on a short track. We took a hit in the points, but this team has been the underdog all year long. We’re not going to stop doing the things that put us in this position. Twenty-seven points is not insurmountable. We’re going to need a little help, but there are guys that are due to have something go wrong over these last three races. At the end of the day, we have speed in our cars and that will win out more often than not.” Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T
DODGE DRIVER QUOTES “I made the comment to my guys before Sunday’s race at Martinsville that we’re on a mission to get back up there solidly in the top-five in the points by the end of the season. We got caught up in the crash at Talladega and that cost us our shot at the championship. I feel like we are a top-five caliber team and we deserve to finish up there in the top-five. We just have to get out there and execute like we know we are capable of doing and achieve that goal.” Kurt Busch, No. 22 AAA Dodge Charger R/T
“I don’t have to tell you how much we are looking forward to this weekend’s race. We’ll have one of Kurt’s best cars – already a race-winner – at one of Kurt’s favorite race tracks. It doesn’t get any better than that. We have three races left and I feel like we can go win all three of them. Texas is first in line and we’re coming in there with a lot of confidence that we can get it done. With us fielding the AAA Dodge in the AAA Texas 500, there’ll be a heckuva party there in Victory Lane when Kurt takes the checkered flag, that’s for sure.” Steve Addington, crew chief No. 22 AAA Dodge Charger R/T
“Texas really is a unique racetrack and a unique layout. From above it looks like any normal 1.5-mile track, but the transitions into and off of the corners are quite a bit different than Charlotte, Las Vegas or any of the other mile-and-a-halfs. There is a lot of banking into the corners, which means you can carry a lot of speed in and to the center of the turns, but you lose that speed on exit as the track flattens out. It’s difficult because normally you can carry the same amount of grip and speed on both corner entry and corner exit. You have to adjust accordingly and sometimes that’s hard to do at 180 miles per hour. It’s easy to find yourself in trouble, especially off of Turn 2.” Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T
“Texas is a place with a lot of unique characteristics. The track has bumps in Turn 2 and has aged to where grip becomes a big factor late into a run. We want to set the car up to run the bottom of the track, but yet, still have the flexibility to run various lines through the corners. This is a new car for us this weekend – a new specification that we’ve developed at Penske Racing. We’ve rolled out several new cars during the Chase and have been very happy with their performance. Brad has shown that he knows how to get around these 1.5-mile tracks and I think we’ll have a solid weekend at Texas.” Paul Wolfe, crew chief, No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T