No. 1 Team Captures Pole, Top-10 Finish at Martinsville
Results (with starting pos.) from Martinsville Speedway
1. (9) Kevin Harvick, No. 29 Chevrolet
4. (27) Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet
7. (1) Jamie McMurray, No. 1 WIDIA Chevrolet
Martinsville, Va. (April 3, 2011) – Martinsville Speedway was a weekend of firsts for Jamie McMurray and the No.1 Earnhardt Ganassi Racing team; First pole at Martinsville Speedway, first top-10 finish of the 2011 season and first race with car sponsor WIDIA. After winning the pole position for the Goody’s Fast Relief 500 on Saturday afternoon, McMurray brought the field to the green flag and led the opening 31 laps of the event and brought home a respectable seventh-place finish.
The WIDIA Chevrolet spent the majority of the day running amongst the top-15 cars in the field, however just past the half-way point of the race, the No.1 car had to make a second trip down pit road under caution to replace a missing lug nut. That unscheduled stop put McMurray at the tail-end of the lead lap cars in 17th-position, which was as far back as McMurray re-started all day. Crew chief Kevin “Bono” Manion calmly radioed the driver and stated, “We will be okay. Once some of the wave-around cars make stops we will be right back where we need to be.” The team and driver collected their frustration and settled back into their rhythm and performed strongly the remainder of the event. With their performance and seventh place finish Kevin “Bono” Manion, was awarded with the DIRECTV Crew Chief of the Race Award.
McMurray stated after the event, “We finished Martinsville with four fenders on the race car and in the top-10. I’ll take that! We had a good car all day today and our guys made great adjustments to keep us up front. It is good to get a strong finish that our guys know we are capable of producing.”
- McMurray captured his first pole of the 2011 season and first at pole on a short track
- McMurray is gained three positions in the point standings, currently twenty-third, 84 out of first
- McMurray currently has an average starting position of 11.7 and an average finishing position of 21.8
- McMurray ranked first of all drivers at Martinsville - running in the top-15 for 494 laps 98.8% of the event
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to Texas Motor Speedway this weekend for the Samsung Mobile 500. The race will air on FOX and radio stations affiliated with PRN on Saturday, April 9 at 7:30 pm (ET).