CHEVROLET ON THE TRACK—BRISTOL MOTOR SPEEDWAY:
TEAM CHEVY IN THE GARAGE BRISTOL MOTOR SPEEDWAY – ALBA COLON, PROGRAM MANAGER, NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES – CHEVROLET RACING:
“With just three races to go before the 2013 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup begins, the pressure is really on those teams in the top 20 in the point standings. The Wild Card situation has been changing constantly on a weekly basis. The field is not going to be decided until the last lap at the Richmond race. Every lap led, every win, and every position counts more than ever.
“Team Chevy has four drivers in the top 10; and several drivers sitting between 11th and 20th place that can make it into the Chase under the Wild Card rule. Our main goal the next three weeks is to continue to work hard to secure as many drivers as we can for the final 10-race run for the championship.
“As we head to Bristol Motor Speedway this week, we will get to see all three NASCAR premier racing series battling it out under the lights. There is nothing more exciting for fans and participants alike, than short track racing at night! This high-speed half-mile track offers its own set of unique challenges. Drivers will need to focus on collecting the maximum number of points along with fighting for the win. Having a well-balanced car and staying out of trouble are the keys for success at Bristol.
“We are looking forward to victories for our Team Chevy drivers in all three NASCAR racing series events this weekend.”
TEAM CHEVY FROM THE DRIVER’S SEAT:
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S DOVER WHITE CHEVROLET SS – POINTS LEADER:
“Yeah, short tracks are fun. I’m looking forward it. The night race in Bristol is awesome. I tell many many friends if they are going to pick one that is the one that they need to come see and be a part of for a lot of reasons. I’m excited to go back. We run well there. I’d like to find a little bit more and really be a car racing for the win and go to Victory Lane again. I have high expectations and expect to go there and run really well.”
KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 29 JIMMY JOHN’S CHEVROLET SS – 4th IN STANDINGS:
“We ran really well there (Bristol Motor Speedway) in March, we just kind of got a little bit off on pit strategy at the end, but all-in-all the performance was pretty good. Overall, Bristol is a pretty crazy track. It doesn’t matter if it’s the old track or new track, it just seems like that night race brings a lot more excitement.”
DALE EARNHARDT, JR., NO. 88 DIET MOUNTAIN DEW CHEVROLET SS – 7th IN STANDINGS:
“I like Bristol (Tenn.). I’ve always enjoyed going there as a kid and watching races. The Saturday night race is one of the best tickets in the series. It’s an exciting racetrack, and it’s a lot of fun for the drivers. You’re always in the middle of something every lap. It keeps you on your toes, and it’s a pretty tough racetrack. I enjoy the challenge and look forward to hopefully having a good weekend.”
KURT BUSCH, NO. 78 FURNITURE ROW RACING/SEALY CHEVROLET SS – 9th IN STANDINGS:
“Bristol — it’s a good chance for us to break through (for a win). It’s one of those fun tracks that you anticipate going to, knowing the track and knowing the different types of setups it takes to back up the top-five finish we had there earlier this year. The Bristol night race is one of those top-five events of the year where you feel the excitement and the electricity. The fans are jazzed up for the race. The race has a special vibe to it like the Daytona 500, Coke 600 and the All-Star event. The Gen 6 car has a different feel to it at a short track and our Furniture Row guys have adapted well — some of our best cars have been at short tracks this year. We’re in the Chase mix and the biggest thing is to stay out of trouble. We all know that trouble can happen at any corner at Bristol. There’s 500 laps at Bristol and we have to protect our car and still finish well. There’s three weeks to go where we could get in a little fender-bender, some itty-bitty thing can happen that will put us on the outside. We need to stay focused and worry about what we do and not what others do.”
KASEY KAHNE, NO. 5 FARMERS INSURANCE CHEVROLET SS – 11th IN STANDINGS:
“The Bristol night race is always one of the better races of the year. It’s one of the races I look forward to just because of the time of the season it is. I like racing there at night. It’s hot. It seems like tempers kind of get out of control there at times on the night race probably because it’s hot and you’re racing under the lights. We won the first one, and we ran really well there the last few times we’ve been at Bristol so I’m looking forward to trying to get another win and sweeping the season there.”
JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 AXALTA COATING SYSTEMS CHEVROLET SS – 14th IN STANDINGS:
“Our mindset hasn’t changed going into this weekend. We’re still going to work hard all weekend to have a fast race car, hopefully qualify well and lead some laps and be in position to battle for the win at the end of the night. That’s our plan of attack every weekend. We have a good stretch of tracks ahead and we have to do everything possible to make the most of these races.
“I love this race and I love this track. This is one of the few tracks that when I get here, I usually make it a point to walk the track on Thursday night and soak it all in. With the high banks, the speed and the grandstands surrounding the entire track, this is just such a cool place and a cool experience.”
RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 39 QUICKEN LOANS CHEVROLET SS – 15th IN STANDINGS:
“It’s just a great racetrack and a great short track. I’ve always liked the banked racetracks, in general, over the flatter racetracks. So, I guess in some ways, you could say I’m more comfortable at Bristol. I think Bristol has always been one of those short tracks that everybody loves. And, obviously, that’s changed with the different surface and the way they’ve changed it a little bit. But, ultimately, it’s still a great short track. I really love the banking and I love the fact it’s concrete and doesn’t seem like it changes a whole lot. Once you get a car right, it’s typically right for 500 laps, which is difficult to get on some of the racetracks. Honestly, there’s just no place like Bristol. I’ve told people before that Bristol is like a baby superspeedway. If something happens in front of you, it may not be your fault, but you can get caught up in somebody else’s wreck in the blink of an eye. You have to really be on your toes at Bristol. Everything happens so fast there. You don’t have time to think or blink.”
JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 MCDONALD’S CHEVROLET SS – 16th IN STANDINGS:
“Bristol at nights is always a fun race. I think everyone who has raced under the lights on a Saturday night gets a charge out of going to a track like this. We have had some good runs at Bristol, including a top-10 finish there in the spring earlier this year. I hope that we can put together a good run this weekend in our McDonald’s Chevy. This is obviously a track where things can happen really fast so we just need to focus on the things that we can control and go out and execute.”
PAUL MENARD, NO. 27 SCHROCK/MENARDS CHEVROLET SS – 17th IN STANDINGS:
“I really enjoy short-track racing. That is what our sport was built around. Night racing at Bristol (Motor Speedway) always makes for an exciting evening, for some reason the sparks seem to fly even more when you race under the lights. We’ve had a pretty good record at Bristol over the past couple of years with four top-10 finishes. We’re coming off a great fourth-place run at Michigan International Speedway last weekend and I’m confident that momentum will carry into this weekend. Qualifying is key at Bristol, because track position is very important. If we can get a good starting spot for our Schrock/Menards Chevrolet and stay out of trouble, we’ll be in good shape on Saturday evening.”
JEFF BURTON, NO. 31 CATERPILLAR CHEVROLET SS – 20th IN STANDINGS:
“I think everyone was surprised last year when the high groove became the preferred line to run. I don’t think anyone anticipated that. That usually makes the middle and low lines always open to pass. However, it is really hard to pass at all. Bristol (Motor Speedway) is a completely different track than it was five years ago, but to me it is more of a race now. I know fans enjoyed us beating and banging on one another with all the accidents and tempers flaring, but I think the actual racing is better.”
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET SS – 23rd IN STANDINGS:
“We had a really good Target Chevy the last time we went to Bristol and then we noticed a fuel pressure issue early on in the race and had to go behind the wall for repairs. It’s a shame because when we returned to the track I was going around the lead lap cars with no problem. If that hadn’t of happened the Target team would of easily had a top-five finish. This time we’re looking for a little redemption and getting the finish we deserve at Bristol.”
DANICA PATRICK, NO. 10 GODADDY CHEVROLET SS – 27th IN STANDINGS:
“I’ve liked Bristol since I went there the first time. I remember when I stepped foot onto that track, it was the day before, it was load in day and I looked out there and you’re standing on the straightaway, but it sure seems like a corner. It’s a very cool track and a spectacle for the fans. I feel like that is always the one that everyone says, ‘I want to come see the Bristol night race.’ I feel like the attendance lately has been great, the coverage has been great of NASCAR and I think we’ll get a lot of people out there.”
DAVE BLANEY, NO. 7 TOMMY BALDWIN RACING CHEVROLET SS – 30th IN STANDINGS:
“I am glad to be heading back to Bristol for fast paced, short track racing under the lights. It’s been an up and down battle the past few weeks and our team keeps fighting. That survivor instinct will come in handy at Bristol this weekend.”
JJ YELEY, NO. 36 UNITED MINING EQUIPMENT CHEVROLET SS – 34th IN STANDINGS:
“I am looking forward to having United Mining Equipment back on board the No. 36 Chevy at Bristol Motor Speedway. It will be nice to race under the lights, the fans love this race and so do the drivers. I am really excited about driver intros, if you remember my Bristol shake…stay tuned!”
MARK MARTIN, NO. 14 BASS PRO SHOPS/MOBIL 1 CHEVROLET SS – INTERIM DRIVER FOR THE INJURED TONY STEWART:
“I’m incredibly honored. Sometimes I have a hard time understanding how Tony (Stewart) could possibly feel that way toward me when the guy is so amazing, the modern‑day A.J. Foyt. When I was growing up, A.J. drove anything and everything and was fast and won in everything he drove. And Tony is the guy today that really does that and is successful at it.
“So it’s hard for me to comprehend that, but he’s made great friends ‑‑ we’ve been good friends for quite some time with amazing respect, mutual respect. It’s an honor to be in the situation where we’re able to do this.
“I’m really, really sorry that it comes at the expense of Tony getting hurt. But one thing I do want to say that is really important here is the amazing amount of cooperation that it took to get this deal done by so many parties, and I haven’t seen this much cooperation in the past, and I think it was largely in part for the incredible amount of respect that everyone has in the sport for Tony Stewart.”