Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes – NSCS Race Advance – Daytona 500
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – For Immediate Release
Dodge Motorsports Notes & Quotes
NSCS Race Advance
Daytona International Speedway
Sunday, Feb. 20, 2011
THE DODGE BOYS
• Dodge has 207 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories.
• Dodge’s most recent win came at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Kurt Busch led 252 of 400 laps en route to victory in the Coca-Cola 600.
• Dodge claimed two Sprint Cup victories in 2010.
• Dodge teams have posted 47 wins since the manufacturer’s return to NASCAR’s premier series in 2001 after being out of the sport since 1977.
• Dodge has posted wins each season since it’s return in 2001 including seven wins twice (2002 and 2006).
DODGE AT DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY
• Dodge has four Daytona 500 wins (Richard Petty (2), Ward Burton and Ryan Newman).
• Dodge has 15 Sprint Cup wins at Daytona International Speedway.
• Dodge had a 1-2 finish in the 2008 Daytona 500 when Ryan Newman (No. 12 Alltel Dodge) and Kurt Busch (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge) claimed the top two spots in the 50th running of the “Great American Race”. Dodge drivers finished in six of the first eight positions.
• Dodge earned its first Budweiser Shootout win Saturday night when Penske Racing’s Kurt Busch took the checkered flag to claim his first career win in a restrictor plate race.
• Ward Burton’s win at the 2002 Daytona 500 was Dodge’s first Cup win at Daytona since Richard Petty’s visited victory lane in 1974.
DODGE NEWS AND NOTES
• Kurt Busch has visited victory lane at least once every year since 2002. Only Tony Stewart (12 years) has a longer streak in NASCAR’s premier series.
• Kurt Busch has finished second three times (2003, 2005, and 2008) in 10 Daytona 500 starts.
• Robby Gordon is making his first start in a Dodge since the season finale at Homestead-Miami in 2008. Gordon finished eighth in the 2008 Daytona 500 in a Dodge.
DID YOU KNOW?
• Kurt Busch has 15 top-five and 24 top 10 finishes in restrictor plate races.
• Brad Keselowski gave Dodge its most recent pole at New Hampshire Motor Speedway last September.
• Dodge is an Official Passenger Car of NASCAR.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
• Kurt Busch’s 22 Sprint Cup wins ties him for 27th with former series champion Terry Labonte.
• Robby Gordon has eight career top 10s in restrictor plate races.
DODGE MOTORSPORTS QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“It will be wild and wide-open racing, that’s for sure. With the new pavement, you can pretty much throw the handling aspect out the window. It’ll be all about raw speed and how well you can run in the two-car draft. You have to still be in that survival mode because there are going to be so many cars going every which way. How guys can manage the two-car draft, it will definitely be the way to win at Daytona.”
Kurt Busch, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T
FROM THE ENGINEER
“From the day after last year’s Daytona 500, everyone knew a repave of the 50-year-old track was due. Although we knew that a fresh surface would mean more speed, few could have imagined the increases we’ve seen in the early days of Speedweeks. Lap averages above 206 mph in the Bud Shootout were recorded in the two-car drafts. NASCAR announced two rule changes after Sunday’s qualifying in an effort to limit engine cooling. By limiting engine cooling opportunities, drivers won’t be able to draft lap-after-lap in the same formation without the second car overheating. Changing positions takes time and slows speeds. One thing we know for sure is that it’s going to be a busy week for NASCAR and the teams as they prepare for Thursday’s Duels and Sunday’s 500-mile race.”
Howard Comstock, Dodge Motorsports Engineering
TALKING SHOP WITH PENSKE RACING
“During the “off-season” Penske Racing has worked countless hours in preparation for the Daytona 500. With a new and improved Dodge Charger R/T in the Cup Series and a full season effort with the Dodge Challenger R/T, Penske Racing has rebuilt every car in the fleet. In the month of January, we have tested 18 days on track getting ready for the “Great American Race” and the 2011 season. Everyone at Penske Racing is proud and excited to send 10 of our best cars to support our teams during the Daytona Speedweeks.”
Travis Geisler, Director of Competition, Penske Racing
DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY FAST FACTS
• The Daytona 500 qualifying record of 210.364 mph was set by Bill Elliott in 1987.
• There have been nine different winners in the last nine Daytona 500s.
• The last five and seven of the last nine Daytona 500s have been won by first-time winners of the “Great American Race”.
• Car No. 22 has won the Daytona 500 twice; a No. 2 has never won the event.
DODGE HISTORICAL DATA
• First Dodge NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Win: Lee Petty, 2/1/53, West Palm Beach, Fla., 100 miles, .5-mile track.
• Last Dodge NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Win: Kurt Busch, 05/30/2010, Coca Cola 600, Charlotte Motor Speedway, 144.966 mph avg. speed.
• First Dodge Daytona 500 Win: Richard Petty, 02/18/1973, 157.205 mph avg. speed.
• Last Dodge Daytona 500 Win: Ryan Newman, 02/17/2008, 152.672 mph avg. speed.
DODGE DRIVER QUOTES
“Our goal is to come back and make it a Daytona sweep by winning the Daytona 500. Our Shell-Pennzoil Dodge team is bubbling with confidence after last weekend. It would definitely be the biggest day of my career if we can pull it off.”
Kurt Busch, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T
“The opportunity to jump behind the wheel of the ‘Blue Deuce’ is something that is still pretty surreal for me. Only two drivers have ever been lucky enough to drive Mr. Penske’s flagship ride. Rusty Wallace and Kurt Busch are two champion drivers of the highest caliber. There is definitely pressure that comes with following those two guys, but I’m ready to tackle it head on. This is a pressure sport and we, as drivers, put just as much pressure on ourselves as anyone.”
Brad Keselowski, No 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T
“We came here to Daytona to win the race. We know that the Penske engines are strong and reliable. Kurt (Busch) won Saturday night in the Shootout and his Dodge really looked strong in the draft. We’ll use practice this week to really shake down our SPEED Energy car and see where we were off in qualifying.”
Robby Gordon, No. 7 SPEED Energy Dodge Charger R/T
Source: Dodge Motorsports