Friday, July 8, 2011

Driver Chassis Selections for Quaker State 400 at Kentucky

Note: Not all teams list their chassis selections in their press releases.

Keselowski using winning Kansas car this week (Getty)
Jamie McMurray: Crew Chief Kevin Manion and the McDonald's team have elected to bring Chassis #1004 which will be making its 2011 debut this weekend at Kentucky Speedway. The chassis ran at Texas, Michigan and Pocono in 2010 and has served as the backup in eight races this season.

Brad Keselowski: The #2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger team will use chassis PRS-747 during Saturday night's Quaker State 400 at Kentucky Speedway. Keselowski drove this chassis to a victory at Kansas Speedway last month. The featured tag line on the rear bumper of the #2 Miller Lite Dodge this weekend in Kentucky will be "Now This Is Horsepower." This is in honor of the Kentucky Derby which is run every year at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky.

Mark Martin: crew chief Lance McGrew has chosen Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 5-672 for Saturday's inaugural race at Kentucky Speedway. This is the same chassis that Martin drove to a ninth-place finish at Michigan International Speedway last month. The team also tested this chassis at Kentucky during the Goodyear tire test on June 1.

David Ragan: Primary Chassis RK-750 last ran at Charlotte finished 2nd. The backup chassis RK-711 last ran at Darlington - finished 21st. UPS's Worldport is located a short distance away from the track in Louisville. Worldport is the largest fully automated package handling facility in the world. The operation currently turns over 130 aircraft daily, processing an average of 1.5 million packages a day with a record 2.9 million packages processed on Peak Day 2010.

Ambrose using strong Las Vegas car this week (Getty)
Marcos Ambrose: The #9 RPM team has prepared chassis No. 735 for this weekend's 400-mile race. This Porter Cable Ford Fusion has been run previously this season in Las Vegas, Texas and Charlotte. Australian Word of the Week: Chokkie = Chocolate (Ambrose, always has a bite of Chokkie at the car before the race). Ambrose will have a different look this weekend as Porter Cable will be the primary partner of the #9 Ford Fusion.

Tony Stewart: Chassis No. 14-591 debuted last May in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte. It qualified 26th and finished 15th in its maiden race. It saw extensive wind tunnel time before returning to action in late July for the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. There, it qualified 15th and ran most of the race at the lower end of the top-10. But a savvy two-tire pit call on the team's final stop allowed it to rally to a fifth-place finish. Chassis No. 14-591 spent the rest of the 2010 season as a backup, and in the offseason, it received a new body and logged many hours in the wind tunnel. The Kobalt Tools 400 at Las Vegas was its third career start and first of 2011. It was impressive, as Stewart dominated, leading four times for a race-high 163 laps. He opened up a four-second advantage until a pit road miscue derailed the perfect outing and left him second when the checkered flag dropped. Chassis No. 14-591 returned to action in May's Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte, where it had a quiet run, qualifying 22nd and finishing 17th. It spent more time in the wind tunnel in preparation for Saturday night's inaugural Sprint Cup race at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta.

Matt Kenseth: will run primary chassis RK-741 which last raced at Michigan, this weekend Kenseth will pilot the #17 Crown Royal Ford. Crew chief Jimmy Fennig on racing at Kentucky Speedway: "We're actually taking two cars with us this weekend to Kentucky. Since we have a test day on Thursday, we're going to test chassis 733, and then on Thursday if we feel like the tires are wearing well and if the car's handling well on the track, then we'll most likely use 741 as our primary this weekend. The track surface is really rough at Kentucky so we want to see how the test goes and if we feel the data looks good, we'll opt to run 741 since that's been a race-winning car for us. We're basing a lot of our planning for this weekend off of the No. 16 team's trip to Kentucky for a tire test earlier this season."

Kyle Busch: Chassis No. 308 will make its second-ever start in Saturday night's Quaker State 400 at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta. No. 308 made its debut last month at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, where Busch started third and finished 12th.

Kurt Busch and his Steve Addington-led Shell-Pennzoil "Double-Deuce" Dodge Team will be racing their "PRS-752" Penske Racing Dodge Charger at Kentucky this weekend. This chassis debuted in the May 15 FedEx/Autism Speaks 400 at Dover, where Busch started sixth and finished 14th. This weekend's Quaker State 400 will be the second race for this car. The "PRS-749" chassis, wgich ran at Richmond, will serve as the backup Dodge Charger.

Paul Menard will pilot Chassis No. 356 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable. This #27 Menard's / Sylvania Chevy was a brand new addition to the RCR fleet for the 2011 season, making its on-track debut at Charlotte in May when Menard started from the 16th position andbrought home a 29th-place result. The Slugger Labbe-led team will use Chassis No. 328 for Thursday's test session at the 1.5-mile racetrack. Also built new for the 2011 season, this car made appearances at Las Vegas (started 18th/finished 12th) and Darlington (started 18th/finished 22nd).

Harvick going with winning Michigan car from 2010 (Getty)
Kevin Harvick: will race chassis No. 288 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable. The team utilized this car eight times in 2010, earning one win (Michigan, 8/15), three top-five (Fontana, 2/21; Indianapolis, 7/25) and six top-10 finishes. Harvick also raced this car to a fifth-place finish earlier this year at Pocono (6/12). As Sprint Cup Series teams prepare to compete at Kentucky Speedway for the first time this weekend, NASCAR has allotted nearly six hours of testing for the teams on Thursday. In addition to the extra track time this weekend, the #29 Budweiser Chevy team was one of seven teams that participated in the Goodyear tire test at the track last month.

Jeff Burton will race chassis No. 259 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable in this weekend's Quaker State 400. Burton tested this RCR racer back in 2009 at Rockingham Speedway. This #31 Caterpillar Chevy will make its first competitive laps this weekend at Kentucky Speedway.

Clint Bowyer: will pilot chassis No. 360 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable. This #33 Cheerios/Hamburger Helper Chevy, built new in 2011, saw action earlier this season at Kansas Speedway when Bowyer recorded an 18th-place finish after starting 27th.

Dave Blaney: will debut the No. 293 chassis this weekend at Kentucky Speedway. TBR purchased the chassis from Richard Childress Racing, and Jeff Burton most recently drove the chassis.

Ryan Newman: In five previous starts, chassis No. 39-609 has two top-five and three top-10 finishes. The car made its debut at Indianapolis in July 2010 where back-to-back flat tires early in the race trapped Newman two laps down and dropped him as low as 39th. But Newman was able to stage an impressive comeback and got back on the lead lap with 15 laps to go to finish a respectable 17th. The car's second start came at Auto Club Speedway, last fall, finishing fifth. Its final appearance of the 2010 season came at Texas. Newman was in position to score a top-10 finish, however, he was overtaken by several cars with fresher tires on a late restart and finished 20th. During the offseason, the car's front clip was updated for 2011. The car's first appearance this year came in March at Auto Club Speedway. Thanks to key adjustments and pit strategy throughout the 200-lap race, Newman scored his third top-five of the season. Newman followed up that impressive run with a top-10 finish that didn't come easily for he and his team at Pocono. With 21 laps to go, Newman lost third gear in his transmission. Thankfully, there wasn't a late-race caution and Newman was able to fight through the adversity and hang onto a ninthplace finish. Saturday's Inaugural Sprint Cup Series Race at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta will be the car's third start this year. Tornados colors will run at Kentucky

Juan Pablo Montoya: Team Target Crew Chief Brian Pattie has elected to bring chassis #1105 to Kentucky Speedway this weekend. This chassis has already run four times in 2011 at Texas, Darlington, Kansas and got its best finish (third) at Las Vegas in March.

Allmendinger using his Fontana chassis this week (Getty)
A.J. Allmendinger: The #43 RPM team has prepared chassis No. 742 for this weekend's event at Kentucky Speedway. This Valvoline Ford Fusion has been run previously this year at California. Allmendinger will have a different look this weekend as Valvoline will make its second appearance of the year as the primary partner of the #43 Ford Fusion.

Jimmie Johnson: will pilot chassis No. 659 at Kentucky. Johnson finished 27th in this chassis at Michigan in June. Backup chassis No. 669 finished seventh at Kansas in June 2011.

Dale Earnhardt Jr.: Crew chief Steve Letarte will unload Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 88-657 for this weekend's Cup event at Kentucky. Earnhardt last raced this chassis to a runner-up finish at Kansas Speedway in June. The team will test this chassis during Thursday's open test at Kentucky.

Carl Edwards: The #99 Aflac crew will be unloading chassis 765. Edwards last raced this car at the Coke 600 in Charlotte where he finished 16th. This will be the second race for the car.

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