Monday, April 25, 2011

Richmond International Raceway Odds & Ends: Crown Royal 400

At Richmond International Raceway:

Kyle Busch has won the last two spring races (Getty)
· Originally known as the Atlantic Rural Exposition Fairgrounds, Richmond International Raceway held its first race in 1946 as a half-mile dirt track.
* The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race was April 19, 1953.
* The spring 1964 race was run on a Tuesday night under temporary lighting.
* The track name changed to Virginia State Fairgrounds in 1967.
* The track surface was changed from dirt to asphalt between races in 1968.
* The track name changed to Richmond Fairgrounds Raceway in 1969.
* Track was re-measured to a half-mile in April 1969; then to .542-mile in September.
* The track was rebuilt as a three-quarters-mile D-shaped oval following the Feb. 21, 1988 race.
* The first race under permanent lights was Sept. 7, 1991.
* The first season with both races as night races was 1999.

* There have been 109 NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Richmond since the track opened in 1953.
* The current 400-lap race length was established on the .542-mile measurement in March 1976.
* Buck Baker won the pole in 1953.
* Lee Petty won the first race in April 1953.
* There have been 48 different pole winners, led by Bobby Allison and Richard Petty (eight).
* Jeff Gordon (five) leads active drivers with five poles.
* 47 different drivers have posted victories at Richmond, led by Richard Petty (13).
* Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart, Jimmie Johnson and Terry Labonte (three) lead active race winners.
* Car owner Richard Petty has won 15 races at Richmond, more than any other team.
* 63 of 109 races have been won from the top five starting positions, including 22 from the pole.
* The last driver to win from the pole was Kyle Busch in May 2010.
* 13 of the past 16 races have been won from the top 10, but three of the last six have been won from a starting position outside the top 10.
* The furthest back in the field a race winner has started was 31st, by Clint Bowyer in 2008’s spring race.
* Kyle Petty became the first third-generation NASCAR race winner when he won his first race, at Richmond, on Feb. 23, 1986. Richard Petty posted his first Richmond victory in 1961 and Lee won the very first Richmond race in 1953.
* Three active drivers have a finish inside the top 10: Kyle Busch (5.2), Denny Hamlin (8.0) and Clint Bowyer (9.8).
* Five of the last six races have had a margin of victory less than one second.

NASCAR in Virginia
There have been 271 NASCAR Sprint Cup races in Virginia.
161 drivers in NASCAR’s three national series (all-time) have their home state recorded as Virginia.
There have been 18 race winners from Virginia in NASCAR’s three national series.

Richmond International Raceway Data
Race # 9 of 36 (4-30-11)
Track Size: .75 miles
· Banking/Corners: 14 degrees
· Banking/Frontstretch: 8 degrees
· Banking/Backstretch: 2 degrees
· Frontstretch: 1,290 feet
· Backstretch: 860 feet

Denny Hamlin has been the legend of the fall races (Getty)
Driver Rating at Richmond
Denny Hamlin 119.8
Kyle Busch 113.8
Kevin Harvick 112.1
Jeff Gordon 97.8
Tony Stewart 97.4
Clint Bowyer 96.6
Kurt Busch 94.1
Ryan Newman 93.4
Mark Martin 91.6
Jimmie Johnson 89.9
Note: Driver Rating compiled from 2005-2010 races (12 total) at Richmond.

Qualifying/Race Data
2010 pole winner: Kyle Busch (127.077 mph, 21.247 seconds)
2010 race winner: Kyle Busch
(99.567 mph, 05-01-10)
Track qualifying record: Brian Vickers (129.983, 20.772 seconds, 05-14-04)
Track race record: Dale Jarrett (109.047 mph, 09-06-97)

- compiled by Ray M. Smith, NASCAR IMC Sport Services

Las Vegas Hilton Odds To Win Richmond Crown Royal 400

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