MONTOYA, MCMURRAY HEAD FOR THE MONSTER MILE
Dover International Speedway Advance Notes
Race: AAA 400 on Sunday, Oct. 2
Track: Dover International Speedway (1.058-mile oval)
Location: Dover, Delaware.
Follow EGR on Twitter: Continue to follow Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates on their official team Twitter page. Follow the No. 1 and No. 42 teams throughout the 2011 season @EGRTeams.
Pink Numbers: This weekend at the “Monster Mile”, Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates has partnered with Team Chevy to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month. For the AAA 400, the No. 1 and No. 42 Chevrolets will have pink numbers on their roofs and doors, pink “Impala” branding on the front bumper and pink Chevrolet “Bow Ties” on the hood and rear bumper.
Jamie McMurray and No. 1 McDonald’s Team
History at Dover: McMurray has made 17 career NSCS starts at Dover International Speedway since 2003. In those races, he has scored one top-five, five top-10s and has been running at the finish of every race he has started. He has completed 6,701 of 6,804 laps at the “Monster Mile” leading 131 of them. McMurray’s best start came in the Spring of 2008 when he started fifth, and his best finish was in the Spring of 2006, when he took the checkered flag in second-place.
You’ve Gotta Finish: This weekend, the NSCS heads for Dover International Speedway, which is one of six tracks on the current Sprint Cup Series schedule at which McMurray does not have any career DNFs. Along with the track in Delaware, McMurray has also finished every race at Auto Club Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Infineon Raceway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Towards the Top: Over the previous 13 races at Dover, McMurray finds himself toward the top of the list in multiple statistical categories. He is currently third in the category of “Green Flag Passes” with 554 (Jeff Burton – 589, Casey Mears – 556). He is also tied for fifth in the “Closers” category (Positions improved in the last 10% of the race) at the “Monster Mile” with 15 passes. He sits only seven passes behind leaders Greg Biffle and Denny Hamlin, who are tied with 22.
McDonald’s Fix: You can curve your hunger before attending this weekend’s AAA 400 at McDonald’s, located at 879 North DuPont Highway Dover, DE. Come see Jamie McMurray at this location starting at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday Sept. 29. McMurray will be there to sign autographs for fans.
Loudon Recap: Track conditions were drastically different from the practice and qualifying sessions on Friday and Saturday after rain moved through the area. Teams would face the challenge of uncertain handling conditions once the green flag waved. The No. 1 team made several aggressive adjustments on the AXE Cool Metal Chevrolet in the early stages of the 300 lap event. Once the team had the car handling more to the driver’s liking, McMurray began to run some of the fastest lap times in the field. However, they were unable to catch a caution flag to help them improve their track position and would ultimately cross the finish line in the 23rd-position.
In the Points: With his 23rd-place finish at New Hampshire, McMurray dropped one position to 27th in the NSCS point standings. He is now 138 points behind 13th-place, the highest position a “non-chase” driver can reach.
Juan Pablo Montoya and No. 42 Target Team
Dover History: In nine career starts at Dover International Speedway, Montoya has picked up one top-five, two top-10s and has been running at the finish of seven of his starts. He has completed 94.9% of the laps run (3,415 of 3,600) at Dover in his nine races and he has led five of them. Montoya’s best starts came in the Fall races of 2007 and 2009, when he started on the outside of the front row. His best finish came in September of 2009 when he brought the No. 42 home in fourth-place.
Double Digits: When Montoya makes his 10th start at Dover International Speedway this weekend, it will be only the seventh track where he has made double-digit starts (Bristol, Daytona, Loudon, Michigan, Pocono, Richmond). In his 69 races at those tracks (Including Dover), he has three top-fives, 19 top-fives and three poles. He has also completed more than 20,500 laps, been running at the finish of 60 races and finished on the lead lap in 37 of them.
Making Laps: Montoya is the only driver in the Sprint Cup Series to complete more than 8,000 laps going into Dover (8,008). He has completed 99.56% of the scheduled laps this season and has been running at the finish of all 28 races so far this season.
Homestead Ticket Package: Fans who plan to attend the season finale Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway should take advantage of the “Race Day with Juan” ticket package. The package, which fans may purchase for $142, will include:
• Ticket to Sprint Cup Championship-finale Ford 400 (Turn 1, rows 11-21)
• Private pre-race meet-and-greet with Montoya in the infield Driver’s Meeting Room
• Pre-Race Pit Pass access to front-stretch for photos, autographs, Q&A sessions
• No. 42 Target commemorative lanyard and credential holder
• $42 donation to the Formula Smiles Foundation headed by Montoya and wife Connie
For more information visit www.HomesteadMiamiSpeedway.com/Montoya
Looking Back at Loudon: On Sunday afternoon, the Sylvania 300 got underway. Montoya maintained his track position and would eventually land himself into the top-10 by lap 90. Under hot, humid conditions, the team worked on handling concerns for the 300-lap event and would play on pit strategy to help advance Montoya through the field. The Degree Men Chevrolet would be credited with leading two laps and ran in the top-10 for the second half of the race. When the checkered flag waved, Montoya would gain 22 spots from start to finish and end up in the ninth position.
In the Points: After coming home in ninth, the No. 42 team sits 19th in points with 745. Montoya is now only 30 points behind 13th-place, the highest position in the standings that a “non-chase” team can reach.
No. 1 McDonald’s Chevrolet (NSCS): Chassis #1104. Crew Chief Kevin “Bono” Manion and the No.1 McDonald’s team will bring chassis #1104 to Dover this weekend. This chassis has already been used four times this season, including both races at Michigan International Speedway, both events (The All-Star Race and Coca-Cola 600) at Charlotte Motor Speedway in May.
No. 42 Target Chevrolet (NSCS): Chassis #1003. The No. 42 team has selected chassis #1003 for the AAA 400 at Dover. This will be the fourth race of 2011 for this chassis, after it was used in both races at Bristol and in the Spring race at Dover. This car also ran five times last year (Charlotte-May, Chicago-July, Atlanta-September, Fontana-October and Texas-November).