TEAM CHEVY ADVANCE
MARCH 25, 2018
LEADER OF THE PACK:
Did you know that Chevrolet leads all manufacturers with 56 wins at Martinsville Speedway? Chevrolet has gone to Victory Lane more than any other brand at the oldest track on the circuit. Buck Baker took Chevrolet to Winner’s Circle for the first time in 1957 piloting the famous ‘Black Widow’ – a car based off the Chevy 150 Utility Sedan. Since then seven other iconic Chevy brands (Bel Air, Biscayne, Impala, Monte Carlo, Lumina, Impala SS and SS) have entered the hallowed ground of Winner’s Circle at Martinsville adding to the long tradition of racing.
Jimmie Johnson pilot of the No. 48 Lowe’s for Pros Camaro ZL1 is a nine-time winner at Martinsville Speedway, leading all other active drivers in wins at the half-mile of mayhem. Another victory would put Johnson ahead of former Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jeff Gordon and place him third on the all-time Martinsville wins chart. Only Richard Petty (15) and Darrell Waltrip (11) have more victories than the seven-time series champion at the half-mile venue.
CHEVY HISTORY MINUTE:
Rick Hendrick and Hendrick Motorsports have more victories than any other organization at Martinsville Speedway. Hendrick Motorsports earned their first victory at the half-mile venue in 1984 with Geoff Bodine behind the wheel of a Chevrolet. Since that day, Hendrick Motorsports has gone on to record 23 more victories at Martinsville Speedway – all under the Chevrolet Banner. 2018 marks the 35th year of partnership between Chevrolet and Hendrick Motorsports, the longest running partnership at the organization.
The STP 500 is scheduled to begin on Sunday, March 25th at 2 pm, ET. Live coverage can be found on FoxSports1, MRN and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.
BY THE NUMBERS:
Chevrolet has won 39 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Manufacturer Championships
Team Chevy drivers have scored 776 wins and 695 poles in MENCS competition
Chevrolet drivers have won 56 of 138 races at Martinsville Speedway. Victories by current Team Chevy drivers are:
Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s for Pros Camaro ZL1, has nine victories at Martinsville Speedway (’04, ’06, ’07 – TWICE, ’08, ’09, ’12, ’13 & ‘16)
Ryan Newman, No. 31 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, has visited Victory Lane at Martinsville Speedway once (’12)
A Chevrolet driver has won one of the last three races at Martinsville Speedway
A Chevrolet driver has sat on the pole at Martinsville Speedway 54 times
Team Chevy drivers have scored 259 top-five and 486 top-10 finishes at Martinsville Speedway
A Chevrolet has led laps 27,303 (43.2% of possible 63,107 laps) at Martinsville Speedway
KYLE LARSON, NO. 42 CREDIT ONE BANK/DC SOLAR CAMARO ZL1 – 7TH IN STANDINGS
“Martinsville has been a tricky race track for me over the years. It’s just such a different layout from what I grew up racing, and a pretty unique layout from most of the other tracks we race in NASCAR. I’ve had one pretty good finish there, but otherwise it’s been a tough place for us. Our team usually has good cars there, and we tested Martinsville in the simulator earlier this week, so hopefully this year I can come away with a better finish. We had a pretty good west coast swing, and it would be great to keep that momentum going.”
AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 AMERICAN ETHANOL CAMARO ZL1 – 12TH IN STANDINGS
“I love short track racing. We all grew up short track racing with tight quarters and moving people around and just fighting hard for every position you can gain.”
RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 31 EBAY MOTORS CAMARO ZL1 – 14TH IN STANDINGS
“Well learning how to race Martinsville versus learning how to race at Martinsville are two different things because you must race the racetrack on one hand and then the other, you have to race the competition. Being fast there I don’t think is difficult. Being fast and able to pass and race there is where the challenge really is. Being good at Martinsville doesn’t come easy.”
ALEX BOWMAN, NO. 88 NATIONWIDE CAMARO ZL1 – 16TH IN STANDINGS
“I really like Martinsville. It’s obviously unique. It’s flat and slow and long straightaways, so, it’s fun. I’ve run okay there in the past. I’m really excited to get there with a good race car and see how we do.”
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S FOR PROS CAMARO ZL1 – 18TH IN STANDINGS
“We are chipping away and still working hard. The small victories we had last weekend are good signs we are moving in the right direction – we know there is still a lot of work to do. Last week’s solid performance moved us up in points a bit as well. I always look forward to racing at Martinsville, it suits our team’s style and it’s one of our favorite tracks – you feel like you have stepped back in time when you walk in there.”
DARRELL ‘BUBBA’ WALLACE, NO. 43 STP CAMARO ZL1 – 19TH IN STANDINGS
“This is a really big weekend for us. STP is the title sponsor of the race, the STP 500, and we are running the STP Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 that I helped design. I told the guys last week after California that I really want to win this one. I have two Grandfather Clocks, but I need one in Cup. I love this track and the people. The (Wendell) Scott family, this is their home track, too. So, just a lot of history in this track. ‘The King’ has so much history here, too. So, again, just a lot of great things going into this weekend.
“We made a small step forward at California and I think we’re learning and getting better. I know what I need in the car this weekend, how it’s supposed to feel. I have a lot of confidence going into the weekend.”
WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 LIBERTY UNIVERSITY CAMARO ZL1 – 20TH IN STANDINGS
“Martinsville is always a tough place as a rookie. One of the keys to Martinsville is getting that balance between turn and drive off, like at any other short track. Consistency over the course of the run is really important and track position is really big, especially later in the race. You’ve got to be aggressive and treat it as you would any other short track. We’re glad to have Liberty (University) back on the car for this one since it’s in their home state.”
CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS CAMARO ZL1 – 21ST IN STANDINGS
“We’ve improved a lot from my first couple visits to Martinsville. In the past, the track has been pretty tough on me, but last season we were able to improve and be competitive. I’ve learned some things and hope to have a better outcome than last fall.”
CHRIS BUESCHER, NO. 37 BUSH’S BEANS CAMARO ZL1 – 22ND IN STANDINGS
“You can definitely say there are mentally draining aspects of Martinsville (Speedway). It’s probably a little bit more physically than mentally draining. I love short track racing in general. Martinsville was a rocky start for me in my Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series career, but I’m starting to come around to that place a little bit. I enjoy it more now every time we go a little bit more than the previous time. We had a really good run there last season, it was probably our first good finish of the year last season so we feel like going back should be something that we can build on and try to be a little bit better.
“AJ runs extremely well there. It’s always nice to have a teammate to lean on that does as well as he does there. We try to get some information from the No. 47 team and look at data to try and learn as we go. We’re going to go out there and put on a good show. It’s a cool racetrack, it’s one of the places where I think fans really get into it a lot more than some of these others. I’m really looking forward to getting there.”
AJ ALLMENDINGER, NO. 47 KROGER CLICKLIST CAMARO ZL1 – 25TH IN STANDINGS
“Martinsville Speedway is one of those racetracks where until you cross the finish line, anything can happen. Whether you have a great racecar or you’re struggling, if you’re in it at the end of the race you have a shot at the win. I love Martinsville Speedway, but it’s definitely an exhausting place both mentally and physically. It is one of those racetracks where mentally, you know up until the last lap anything can happen. I’ve had races where I’ve felt like I’ve run 490 perfect laps there, and on the final restart you can get taken out and feel like you’ve wasted a whole day. It’s a challenge but a place where I feel like if we get our stuff right, we’ve got a chance to go win.
“Getting prepared for Martinsville Speedway is similar to preparing for a superspeedway race. If you do everything right, and you get caught in a wreck or someone gets into you the wrong way, then it’s something you can’t control. It’s when you force yourself into those mistakes or early in the race you start bouncing off a guy and eventually they come back and pay you back. Those are things that you can control. For me, that’s what I do. If I can run my own race and everything goes right, then it’s not meant to be, then it’s not. It’s the times where you force something too early or you make a mistake and it causes your own issues, then that’s when I’m mad at myself.”
JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 FIRST DATA CAMARO ZL1 – 26TH IN STANDINGS
“Martinsville is one of my favorite places to race. I don’t really have any specific reason as to why, other than it is like how most of us grew up racing on short tracks around the country. Since the first time that I went there, I feel like I had a good understanding of how to get around that track. It will also be nice just being back close to home and not having to get on an airplane this weekend. Martinsville is close enough to drive back-and-forth each day. Hopefully we can have a good run this weekend to gain some ground in the points and get past some of the bad luck that we have had the first few weeks.”
KASEY KAHNE, NO. 95 PROCORE CAMARO ZL1 – 29TH IN STANDINGS
TY DILLON, NO. 13 GEICO CHEVROLET SS – 31ST IN STANDINGS