SRT Motorsports – Weekend Motorsports Preview -July 12


    Magic Mile’ Awaits Cup and Nationwide Teams; Trucks to Iowa Pastrana Leads Dodge Dart into Round Four of GRC at NHMS

    July 12, 2012 , Auburn Hills, Mich. – LOUDON, N.H. (Thursday, July 12, 2012) – It’s a jam-packed calendar of racing this weekend with the “Magic Mile” in The Granite State serving as center stage.  The NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series will be joined by the Global RallyCross Series at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

    Tucked away in the picturesque hills of northern New Hampshire, the 1.058-mile, paperclip-shaped track offers a different challenge than last weekend’s high-speed affair at Daytona.  Instead of trying to decide on a drafting partner, it’s about keeping your brakes cool and temper even cooler.  Teams will gamble for track position.  Fuel mileage will certainly be a factor.

    With only eight races remaining until the cut-off to the Chase to the Sprint Cup championship, the driver standings reflect the intense competition in quest of a berth in the field.  Only 20 points separate fifth and 10th after 18 races.

    “After the 200 mph pack racing that we saw at Daytona last week, engineers now have to prepare for a completely different kind of race at New Hampshire this week,” said SRT engineer Howard Comstock.  “It’s all about track position and fuel economy.  That makes qualifying one of the most important sessions of the weekend.  Passing, while not completely impossible, is as hard here as it is anywhere in the series.  If you can start up front, you have the most important part of a winning strategy already in your pocket.”

    Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T) earned his first-career Sprint Cup Series pole last fall at Loudon and posted a runner-up finish.  Keselowski and Tony Stewart both have three wins this season, most in the series.

    “The three wins are nice, and it means that we are pretty safe in regards to making the Chase, but we are focused on staying in the top 10 so that we can use the bonus points,” Keselowski said.  “That’s the way I look at the points right now.  To me, we are leading the points because we are in the top 10 with the most wins.

    “I want to be the guy with the most wins and inside the top 10 and I want to make sure that we stay there.  Hopefully we can climb up a few more spots to be safe.  But wins and being in the top 10, that’s all that matters.”  Sam Hornish Jr. (No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T) will again be behind the wheel of the No. 22 Dodge, replacing his Penske Racing teammate A.J. Allmendinger who was temporarily suspended by NASCAR last weekend in Daytona.

    “Sometimes it happens like this,” he said.  “We will attempt to find the good in this situation and make the most of the opportunity.  I like this type of track as it requires that the driver make compromises – the car may be great at one end of the track and then not so good at the other – so you have to do your best and make it work.”

    What You Need To Know The Races:

    • LENOX Tools 301 (Race 19 of 36)
    • The Place: New Hampshire Motor Speedway
    • The Date: Sunday, July 15
    • The Time: 1:00 p.m. (ET)
    • The Track: 1.058-mile track
    • The Distance:  301 laps/318.458 miles
    • TV: TNT, 12:00 p.m. (ET)
    • Radio: PRN, Sirius XM Ch. 90

    NASCAR Nationwide Series Sam Hornish Jr. (No. 12 Alliance Dodge Challenger R/T) is making his 50th-career NNS start this weekend at Loudon and continues to be in contention for this year’s championship.  Hornish is currently fourth in the standings, 35 markers behind the series leader Elliott Sadler.  Hornish is making his first Nationwide Series start at NHMS.

    GLOBAL RALLYCROSS SERIES Travis Pastrana will pilot the No. 199 Discount Tire Dodge Dart in this weekend’s RallyCross event at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.  His season-best finish of ninth came in the series opener at Charlotte.  In the last two events, the action sport icon has been a victim in mishaps that have kept him out of the Main Event.  Pastrana and his crew are confident they’ve made even more improvements to their Dart for this weekend’s event.

    “Our Dodge Dart is amazing on slick surfaces,” said Pastrana.  “For New Hampshire, our Dodge is like it was for X Games.  The set-up is more than what it needs for the dirt and not quite as stiff as it needs to be for the pavement.  We have the best car for the jump and the best car in the dirt.  They’ll have some dirt and jumps at Loudon, so we’re hoping that we can make time where the other cars can’t and we’ll be in position to pass.  I think our Dodge Dart will be able to make passes where the other cars can’t.   We’ll be fast.”

    The RallyCross competition is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Saturday with heat races followed by the main event.

    What You Need To Know The Races:

    • F.W. Webb 200 (Race 17 of 33)
    • The Place: New Hampshire Motor Speedway
    • The Date: Saturday, July 14
    • The Time: 3:30 p.m. (ET)
    • The Track: 1.058-mile track
    • The Distance:  200 laps/211.6 miles
    • TV: ESPN, 3:30 p.m. (ET)
    • Radio: PRN, Sirius XM Ch. 90

    NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Parker Kligerman (No. 29 RAM) is currently fifth in the series standings, 34 points behind leader Timothy Peters heading to Iowa Speedway this weekend.  The Brad Keselowski Racing driver will be making his second-career NCWTS start at the .875-mile speedway.  “The biggest thing about Iowa is it’s very much the short track that thinks it’s a superspeedway,” Kligerman said.  “It has the speed of a superspeedway and the feel of a superspeedway.  But at the same time, it also has some unique characteristics that separate itself from anywhere else.”

    What You Need To Know

    • The Races: American Ethanol 200 (Race 9 of 22)
    • The Place: Iowa Speedway
    • The Date: Saturday, July 14
    • The Time: 8:30 p.m. (ET)
    • The Track: .875-mile track
    • The Distance: 200 laps/175 miles
    • TV: SPEED, 8:00 p.m. (ET)
    • Radio: MRN, Sirius XM Ch. 90

    Dodge Weekend Motorsports on TV (All Times Eastern) Friday, July 13

    • 12:00 p.m. – Sprint Cup Practice at New Hampshire (SPEED)
    • 1:00 p.m. – Nationwide Final Practice at New Hampshire (SPEED)
    • 3:30 p.m. – Sprint Cup Qualifying (SPEED)
    • 7:00 p.m. – Camping World Truck Series Practice at Iowa (SPEED)

    Saturday, July 14

    • 10:00 a.m. – Nationwide Qualifying (ESPN2)
    • 11:00 a.m. – Sprint Cup Final Practice (SPEED)
    • 2:30 p.m. – Nationwide Countdown (ESPN)
    • 3:30 p.m. – Nationwide F.W. Webb 200 (ESPN)
    • 8:30 p.m. – Camping World Truck Series “American Ethanol 200” (SPEED)

    Sunday, July 15

    • 10:00 a.m. – NASCAR RaceDay (SPEED)
    • 12:00 p.m. – NASCAR Countdown to Green (TNT)
    • 1:00 p.m. – Sprint Cup Series “LENOX Industrial Tools 301” (TNT)