Friday, May 16, 2014

2014 All-Star Race Chassis Selections: Lots of very good cars seeking $1 million

Jeff Gordon is using runner-up Texas chassis Saturday in All-Star event

#2-Brad Keselowski: Primary Chassis for the Sprint All-Star race at Charlotte is PRS-910, which is a new chassis. The Backup Chassis is PRS-853 which was the backup at Richmond, but has not raced. Keselowski will make his sixth career start in the annual Sprint All-Star race this weekend. He made his debut in 2009, when he started 10th and finished 17th. His best result to date came in the 2012 race when he finished in second place.

#3-Austin Dillon: will pilot chassis No. 431 in the Sprint Showdown at Charlotte Motor Speedway. This Dow Chevy was utilized by the Gil Martin-led team in 2013 on three occasions, with Kevin Harvick earning a win at Kansas Speedway (October), a sixth-place finish at Charlotte Motor Speedway (October) and an eighth-place finish at Texas Motor Speedway (November). Friday night's non-points exhibition race, which serves as a qualifying event for Saturday's All-Star race, will mark Dillon's first appearance in the Sprint Showdown. The top-two finishers will earn a starting berth in the All-Star race.

#4-Kevin Harvick will pilot Chassis No. 4-850 in the Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte. Chassis No. 4-850 debuted in March at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California, where Harvick had a strong run going. But a pair of flat tires relegated him to a 36th-place finish. Harvick has totals of one win, two top-five finishes and seven top-10s in 13 career Sprint All-Star Race starts.

#5-Kasey Kahne: Crew chief Kenny Francis will unload Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 5-820 for Saturday's event. Kahne raced this car twice last year, finishing 15th at Kansas in October and then 13th at Homestead in November. Most recently, Kahne drove this chassis at Fontana in March. Kahne is one of seven drivers who have swept the All-Star race and the 600-mile event in the same season. The drivers include: Darrell Waltrip (1985), Davey Allison (1991), Dale Earnhardt (1993), Jeff Gordon (1997), Jimmie Johnson (2003), Kahne (2008) and Kurt Busch (2010). Time Warner Cable will adorn the hood of Kahne's #5 Chevy this weekend at Charlotte and will be the primary sponsor on the car for two more Sprint Cup Series races this year: Indianapolis in July and New Hampshire in Sept.

#10-Danica Patrick will pilot Chassis No. 10-828, which was first used at Homestead-Miami Speedway in November 2013, when Patrick started 24th and finished 20th. It was then put to use in March at Las Vegas, where she started 22nd and finished 21st. The last time it was used was in late March at Auto Club Speedway, where she started 27th and finished 14th. The backup chassis No. 10-805 was used for the first time in July at Indianapolis, where Patrick started 33rd and finished 30th. It was then used in September at Chicago, where Patrick started 23rd and finished 20th, and in October at Charlotte, where Patrick started 35th and finished 20th. The last time it was used was in November at Texas, where she started 30th and finished 25th. Since then, it has served as a backup car in 2014 at Las Vegas and then was regulated to the primary car at Bristol, where she started 36th and finished 18th. It was then a backup at Kansas.

#14-Tony Stewart: Chassis No. 14-754 debuted in March 2013 at Las Vegas, where it qualified ninth and finished a solid 11th. Prior to Las Vegas, it had never turned a wheel on a racetrack, but it did spend considerable time in the wind tunnel. Its second start came last April at Texas, where it qualified 13th and struggled with its handling before finishing 21st. Its last start of 2013 came in the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte, where it started 13th and finished 14th in the non-points event. Chassis No. 14-754 sat idle until 2014, where under the direction of new crew chief Chad Johnston, was rebuilt for this season. It came out of the box strong in its fourth career start in April at Texas, winning the pole and leading three times for 74 laps before finishing 10th. Chassis No. 14-754 will make its second All-Star start this weekend at Charlotte and its fifth start overall.

#15-Clint Bowyer: Chassis No. 802 serves as the primary chassis for Bowyer during the Sprint All-Star Race. Bowyer drove this Toyota to a 23rd-place finish at Las Vegas and an eighth-place finish at Texas. Chassis No. 804 serves as the back-up chassis. Bowyer drove this chassis to a 15th-place finish at Bristol and a 12th-place finish at Darlington. · Competed in three Sprint Showdowns with a best finish of sixth in 2007. Competed in five All-Star races with a best finish of 12th in 2009. Started on the outside pole in the 2011 All-Star race. Led 11 laps in last year's All-Star race.

#16-Greg Biffle: and the Matt Puccia led #16 3M team will run chassis RK-890 which last ran at Auto Club Speedway finishing 40th when debris on the grille caused Biffle's Ford to overheat. The backup chassis will be RK-879 which last ran at Las Vegas finishing 22nd. This Saturday will mark Biffle's 11th Sprint All-Star appearance, in his previous 10 starts he has two top-five and three top-10 finishes.

#17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: and the #17 Building For America's Bravest Ford Fusion team will be using primary chassis RK-893 is the same chassis that the #17 team ran in Fontana finishing 34th after suffering two blown tires in the final 15 laps. Stenhouse Jr. will try to race his way in to Saturday night's All-Star race this Friday night in the Sprint Showdown. If he doesn't race his way in, then he will rely on the fan vote to get in to the All-Star race.

#22-Joey Logano: Primary Chassis is PRS-909 for the Sprint All-Star race at Charlotte, which is a new chassis. The Backup Chassis is PRS-858 which was the backup at Richmond, but has not raced. Logano has competed in the Sprint All-Star race three times over of the course of his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) career. He first raced in the event in 2009, when he finished eight after getting into the event via the Fan Vote during his rookie season. In 2010, Logano finished third and followed that up with his second-place result last season.

#24-Jeff Gordon: crew chief Alan Gustafson has selected Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 24-830 for this Saturday night's race. This chassis has been raced three times previously with finishes of second and ninth earlier this year at Texas and Las Vegas, respectively. It also was raced in the 2013 season finale at Homestead where Gordon finished 11th. In 20 starts in this annual non-points event, Gordon has three wins, one pole position, six top-five finishes and nine top-10s. He first earned a berth in 1994 by winning the preliminary race and has gained automatic entry into the NASCAR All-Star Race every year since.

#27-Paul Menard will pilot chassis No. 461 in the Sprint Showdown at Charlotte Motor Speedway. This #27 Menard's / Serta Chevy was previously raced at Auto Club Speedway where Menard finished in the ninth position. Menard has six-career Sprint Showdown starts at Charlotte Motor Speedway. His best start of third came in 2011 and best finish of fourth took place in 2010 and 2013. The Wisconsin native has an average start of 11.5 and average finish of 13.7 in the NASCAR All-Star Race qualifying event. In 2012, Menard raced in the Sprint All-Star Race after qualifying by winning the Brickyard 400 (2011). He finished the non-points race 16th after starting in the seventh position.

#31-Ryan Newman will race chassis No. 441 on Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Chassis No. 441 has earned two top-10 finishes for Newman this season. It was utilized at Phoenix International Raceway (Start: 15th, Finish: 7th) and Darlington Raceway (Start: 7th, Finish: 10th).

#41-Kurt Busch will pilot Chassis No. 727 in Saturday night's Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte. In five previous starts, four as the #39 for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), and most recently at Bristol as the #41, it has two top-10s with a best finish of eighth in the Bank of America 500 at Charlotte. Chassis No. 727 finished 13th as the SHR #39 at the 2013 Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte, 21st at Bristol in August, eighth at Charlotte in October and ninth at Texas in November. The chassis tested in Nashville prior to the start of this season. Saturday night marks its second start for the # 41 team. Parker Kligerman, most recently of Swan Racing, will serve as a practice and standby driver for Kurt Busch this week. Busch will be traveling back and forth to Indianapolis as he prepares to run the Indianapolis 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 May 25. Busch has raced in the Sprint All-Star Race 12 times. He participated in the Sprint Showdown, then known as the Winston Open, only one time, his rookie year. He has qualified for the All-Star Race every year since. Busch is pre-qualified into the Sprint All-Star Race through the year 2020 following his event win in 2010. He also has five top-five finishes and seven top-10s in 11 All-Star outings.

#48-Jimmie Johnson: Crew chief Chad Knaus has selected Chassis No. 48-784 for this weekend's non-points event. Johnson last raced this car in June of 2013 at Michigan. The backup car is Chassis No. 48-728, which Johnson most recently at Bristol. Each year since 2001, Lowe's has designed a patriotic-themed car for Johnson to drive in an event. Johnson won a record-setting fourth NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race last year after leading the final 10 laps of the exhibition event. Johnson's 2013 win marked his second straight in the event and broke a tie with Dale Earnhardt Sr. and teammate Jeff Gordon for the most wins in the annual non-points classic. The #48 Lowe's Chevrolet SS scheme for this weekend is a throwback to the 2010 Memorial Day car, which was heralded as a fan-favorite through a recent social media poll.

#55-Brian Vickers: Primary Chassis 803 finished fourth at Texas. The backup chassis is 801, which has not raced.

#88-Dale Earnhardt Jr.: crew chief Steve Letarte and the #88 National Guard team will unload Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 88-716. Earnhardt most recently tested this chassis at the Goodyear Tire test in April at Michigan. Prior to that, Earnhardt raced this chassis to a second-place finish at Texas last November. In 14 appearances in the non-points All-Star event, Earnhardt has scored one win, four top-five finishes and 11 top-10s. His average finish in the exhibition race is 8.3. Last year, Earnhardt earned a spot in the May exhibition race by winning at Michigan International Speedway in June 2012. He lined up 15th for the 90-lap shootout and crossed the finish line seventh. Earnhardt made history on May 20, 2000, when he became the first rookie to win the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte. Earnhardt led two laps and beat veteran Dale Jarrett to the finish line by 1.295 seconds.

#99-Carl Edwards the #99 Ford Fastenal team will unload primary chassis RK-910 in the All-Star race at Charlotte, which is a new chassis. The backup chassis is RK-880 was last run in 2014 at Vegas, finishing fifth. This weekend will mark Edwards' ninth appearance at the All-Star Race. The Roush Fenway Racing driver has one win which came in 2011. Edwards has an average start of 11.5 and an average finish of 11.1. Edwards has finished in the top-five three times and in the top-ten five times.

- compiled by Jayski,.com

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