TEAM CHEVY ADVANCE VERIZON 200 AT THE BRICKYARD INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA AUGUST 15, 2021
RACE #24 – INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSEFresh off the 20th NASCAR Cup Series (NCS) victory in 38 races at Watkins Glen International, Chevrolet teams and drivers will tackle a new race course on the NCS schedule as the push to the Playoffs continues. The 82-lap/200-mile Verizon 200 at the Brickyard on Sunday, August 15, will mark the first time NASCAR’s premier series has raced on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s 2.439-mile road course since it began competing at historic venue in 1994. Chevrolet has recorded 17 wins in the 27 races on the 2.5-mile oval, including five by Jeff Gordon.
Team Chevy drivers turn their attention to the technical road course and turn their direction clockwise on the 14-turn course that incorporates Turns 1 and 2 and the front stretch of the famous oval.The race weekend will also include Chevrolet NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) drivers competing in the Pennzoil 150 and Chevrolet NTT INDYCAR SERIES teams racing in the Big Machine Spiked Coolers Grand Prix on Saturday, August 14.
Chevrolet has won four of the five NCS road course races this season, with Kyle Larson driving the No. 5 HendrickCars.com Camaro ZL1 1LE to victory lane at Watkins Glen International to lead a 1-2 sweep with Hendrick Motorsports teammate Chase Elliott in the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Camaro ZL1 1LE.Larson climbed into a tie for the lead in the Driver Standings with his second road course win and field-high fifth victory of the season. It marked the eighth Hendrick Motorsports victory in the last 11 races and the fourth time Larson and Elliott have finished 1-2 — the third time at a road-course event.
Chevrolet, which leads the NCS Manufacturer Standings, has posted 12 wins with three regular-season races left before the Playoff battle begins at Darlington Raceway. Both the NCS and NXS events will include qualifications. Chevrolet drivers Tyler Reddick (Circuit of the Americas) and William Byron (Road America) have earned the Busch Pole Award at the NCS road courses that utilized qualifying this season.
Six races remain to set the 12-driver NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoff field, starting with the Pennzoil 150. AJ Allmendinger, who was runner-up at Watkins Glen International in his No. 16 Kaulig Racing Camaro SS, is second in the standings and Justin Allgaier is third. Allmendinger finished fourth and Allgaier placed seventh in the 2020 race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course.
CHEVROLET, LARSON ATOP STANDINGSChevrolet strengthened its lead in the Manufacturer Standings in the run to its 40th NASCAR Cup Series title with Kyle Larson’s victory at Watkins Glen International. Larson moved into a tie for lead in the Driver Standings as he seeks his first regular-season title and its 15 Playoff bonus points. Larson has finished either first or second 10 times in the 23 races, including a field-high five wins.
Hendrick Motorsports teammates William Byron is third and Chase Elliott is sixth in the regular-season standings.
ELLIOTT: A ROAD COURSE FAVORITEReigning NASCAR Cup Series Champion Chase Elliott has won at the Circuit of the Americas and Road America and finished runner-up to Hendrick Motorsports teammate Kyle Larson at Sonoma Raceway and Watkins Glen International this season. The Team Chevy drivers will be co-favorites to win the inaugural NCS race on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course. Elliott, who has won seven of the last 12 road course races in NASCAR’s premier division, is third all-time behind Jeff Gordon (nine wins) and Tony Stewart (eight).
One road course race – on the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL in September – is part of the NCS Playoffs. Both Elliott and Larson have secured their spot for the 2021 Playofffs and the chance to battle for the coveted title of the NASCAR Cup Series Champion.
TEAMMATES COURTING SEVENTH PLAYOFF SPOTSix Team Chevy drivers have locked-up a spot in the Playoffs that begin Sept. 5 at Darlington Raceway. With three races left to set the 16-driver Playoff field, Richard Childress Racing’s Tyler Reddick holds the final transfer spot. Reddick, who will drive the No. 8 BETMGM Camaro ZL1 1LE this weekend, placed 10th and picked up seven stage points at Watkins Glen. Teammate Austin Dillon, driver of the No. 3 Dow Mobility Science Camaro ZL1 1LE, is 15 points behind.
BOWTIE BULLETS· Chevrolet leads all manufacturers with 12 victories, including four on road courses.· Chevrolet leads all manufacturers with 102 top-10 finishes and 2,472 laps led of 5,566 total this season.· Chevrolet drivers have led 225 of the 386 laps in the five road course races.· Team Chevy’s AJ Allmendinger and Austin Dillon will compete in both the NXS and NCS races this weekend.· Hendrick Motorsports cars have finished 1-2 in five of the 23 races.· Kyle Larson paces all drivers with 1,468 laps led.· Austin Dillon is second among drivers with 99.91% of laps completed (5,561 of 5,566).· Five Team Chevy drivers have combined for 20 stage wins: Chase Elliott (Daytona RC); William Byron (Homestead, Pocono2, Road America); Tyler Reddick (Road America); Kurt Busch (Nashville Superspeedway, Pocono1, Atlanta2); Kyle Larson (Las Vegas, Atlanta x2, Kansas, Dover x2, Charlotte x3, Sonoma x2, Nashville).
FOR THE FANS:
- Fans can visit the Team Chevy Racing Display in the Fan Midway at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
- Fans can check out an assortment of Chevrolet vehicles including: Bolt EV, Bolt EUV, Trax, Silverado 1500 Trailboss, Silverado HD 2500 LTZ, Corvette Conv. 3LT, Camaro Conv. 3LT, Trailblazer.
- At the Chevrolet Display, fans can also view Austin Dillon’s No. 3 Dow Camaro ZL1 1LE show car and an Ed Carpenter IndyCar show car.
TEAM CHEVY QUESTION AND ANSWER SESSIONS AT THE DISPLAY:Friday, August 13
- 5:05 p.m. – Conor Daly
- 5:30 p.m. – Pato O’Ward and Felix Rosenqvist
Saturday, August 14
- 9:45 a.m. – William Byron and Rinus VeeKay
- 10:00 a.m. – Daniel Suarez
Sunday, August 15
- 11:00 a.m. – Tyler Reddick
Chevrolet Display Hours of Operation:
- Friday, August 13: 2:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
- Saturday, August 14: 7:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
- Sunday, August 15: 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
TUNE INNBC will telecast the NASCAR Cup Series Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at 1 p.m. ET Sunday, Aug. 15. Live coverage is also on the IMS Radio Network and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90. NCS Busch Pole Qualifying at 9 a.m. ET Aug. 15 will be on NBCSN and the NBC Sports App. NBCSN will telecast the NXS Pennzoil 150 at the Brickyard at 4 p.m. ET Saturday, Aug. 14, preceded by Pole Qualifying at 10 a.m. on the NBC Sports App.
QUOTABLE QUOTESKYLE LARSON, NO. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 1st IN STANDINGSLARSON ON RACING AT INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY AND ON ROAD COURSE LAYOUT: “There is just a different vibe at Indianapolis – the history, the fans, the facility. I think it’ll be cool to run the road course layout this weekend and we all want to say we won the inaugural event. With my racing (in Iowa) this week, I’ll be watching a lot of tape of other series on the road course layout to familiarize myself with it ahead of practice on Saturday.” CLIFF DANIELS, CREW CHIEF, NO. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM CAMARO ZL1 1LE DANIELS ON PIT STRATEGY AT INDIANAPOLIS ROAD COURSE: “We do think about the regular-season point standings and want to win it, but that hasn’t played into how we’ve called a race. All year long, we’ve been aggressive trying to get stage points and trying to maximize our day across the board. Everyone thought our strategy (of racing for stage wins and not pitting just prior to end of stages) at Sonoma (Raceway) was bananas, but it worked out. We’ll learn a lot during practice on Saturday, and that should help us refine the gameplan we have worked on this week.”
WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 AXALTA CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 3rd IN STANDINGSBYRON ON PREPARING AND RACING THE INDY ROAD COURSE FOR THE FIRST TIME: “I think it’s going to be really interesting. I honestly would compare it to the ROVAL just based on the laps I have run already on the Chevy simulator. I feel like a lot of the corners are low speed but there are also very high-speed braking zones to manage, as well, like the ROVAL. There’s a lot of tight radius corners, too, but I feel like that’s going to make for good racing. Continuing to prep for this weekend, I’m going to re-watch the Xfinity Series race from there last year and then Saturday’s race, as well. Their cars are pretty similar to us, especially on the road courses with their horsepower and downforce package. They’re a little bit slower than our cars but the characteristics are the same.”
CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 HOOTERS CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 6th IN STANDINGS“You know, that road course to me, is not going to be your average infield road course. That place was the host of an F-1 event, many INDYCAR events over the years, and obviously Xfinity last year. It was laid out probably more like a traditional road course, you know, a place that was kind of made for it and has a little more flow to it than some of the infield tracks that we see, like the ROVAL. A lot of these tracks have infield tracks. We just might not go to them. But I think it’ll be more like a normal road course, more so than the ROVAL. One thing about those types of tracks is they don’t have any elevation really. And that, to me, is kind of what makes them different. Charlotte has a little more elevation and up and down than you might think, but watching that race last year, the thing that stood out to me the most was it is super-flat. There is really no up and down to it. So, I think that could be a little different than the norm.”
ALEX BOWMAN, NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 11th IN STANDINGS“Going to Indy there is a lot of history, most of that comes on the oval. It’s cool to get the opportunity to run the road course. It will be a new challenge for us. I think having two road course events back-to-back will help me be more prepared for the second race. We have been racing ovals for quite a while. It would be really cool to be the next Hendrick Motorsports driver to win at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the first to win on the road course.”
GREG IVES, CREW CHIEF, NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE “We have a good game plan in place for the Indy Chevrolet, based on video and whatever you can to gain knowledge since we haven’t been there before. The foundation that you build is from the feedback from the driver and the things that hurt us in Watkins Glen that you can adjust and apply for Indy. You may adjust your game plan as far as what you are going to practice and try, but all in all you are always learning and can always apply what to do and what not to do.” TYLER REDDICK, NO. 8 BETMGM CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 12th IN STANDINGS“I think track position will be everything for Sunday’s race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course. I found that out at Watkins Glen. I’ve always seen it but really didn’t understand the magnitude of it until this past weekend. For example, stack-ups on a restart when you’re farther back, if someone runs into the back of your car and damages it, the next thing you know you’re flying around trying not to crash other people as well. When you get back there in that mix of guys who stayed out and you’re on tires, it’s chaotic. Having the right track position and having the strategy to not only maintain it, but also advance it, will be a challenge but it’s going to be so important to having a great race.” AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 DOW MOBILITY SCIENCE CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 13th IN STANDINGSDOES YOUR MINDSET CHANGE GOING INTO THIS RACE GIVEN THE POINTS SITUATION YOU ARE IN? “You just have to be aggressive. Points-wise, we’re just racing Tyler, really. But the problem is that it seems like anybody can win right now, so we’ve got to really focus on the rest of the field from that aspect so that the RCR Chevys aren’t put in a worse situation. When it comes down to it, we’ll race each other hard, but we would like to get a win. That’s the big opportunity for us. And I do think we can win. We’ve had moments throughout the season where we’ve been really fast. Things have to line up and we have to have a perfect day in order to get to Victory Lane. That means I have to do my job; the pit crew has to do their job and the strategy has to play out. In the SIM, I’ve been pretty good at the Indianapolis Road Course. It was a little surprising, actually, how the track came to me right away. I’d like to surprise some people at a road course.” THIS YEAR HAS BEEN ON OF YOUR MOST CONSISTENT TO-DATE. WHAT DO YOU ATTRIBUTE THAT TO? “It’s a combination of well-built race cars, power from ECR, and our team returning from last year. Everyone is pretty much the same with the exception of a couple of different guys on the pit crew. We’ve been able to get better each week. We’re having a solid year with Chevrolet doing a really good job of building a good racecar.”
HOW NERVOUS ARE YOU ABOUT MAKING THE NASCAR PLAYOFFS? DOES THE FACT THAT THIS IS ANOTHER ROAD COURSE MAKE IT EVEN MORE NERVE WRACKING? “No, I’ve been pretty calm, really, about it. I know the situation I’m in. It’s unfortunate the amount of winners that we’ve had this year. I feel like we’d be well in a safe place right now, but we’re not. It’s just the situation we’re in and we’re racing our teammate. But I’m pretty confident after being on the SIM a couple of weeks at Indy. I usually don’t pick-up the road courses on the simulator very fast, but for some reason, Indy came to me pretty quick, which is good, I think, for what we’re going into. I think qualifying is the biggest thing on my mind right now for this coming weekend and getting a good qualifying position, because I know how important it is. It’s so hard to pass on all these road courses that get strung out, so starting position matters.” “So, I’m putting a lot of focus into qualifying and trying to make sure that we start up front and give ourselves the best way to get points. We have a 15-point gap right now and if we can maintain or gain a little this weekend, I feel like the next two weeks are good tracks for us and we’ll be in a pretty decent situation going into Daytona, if it is a points game. Obviously, I’d like to lock ourselves in with a win and just don’t want any new winners. That would really put us out. So yeah, I’m in a pretty good, calm situation as far as my mental state. I’ve been working out and am ready to go race and see what it brings us. I think we have been very consistent this year. We just haven’t had the speed that we want at some of these tracks, but the road course stuff has been fun. It’s such an improvement for me that I’d love to go back to some of these road courses a second time with what I’ve learned this year.” OF ALL OF THE ROAD COURSES YOU’VE RUN THIS YEAR, WHICH ONE IS MOST COMPARABLE TO INDY?“Wow, it’s so flat. We’ve got elevation change at every track that we’ve gone to. I’d say Daytona has a little less elevation change. So, for me, I really don’t know because the asphalt at Indy is so different the way the grooves are cut in it and it’s using a lot of lateral grip there. Sonoma, I think braking force-wise, is probably going to be similar; the amount of brake force and stuff like that because it seems like the track falls off a little bit. So, I’m thinking maybe Sonoma and Daytona, in between there.” DANIEL SUAREZ, NO. 99 COMMSCOPE CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 23rd IN STANDINGSWHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON INDIANAPOLIS? “I love Indianapolis no matter what shape it is in. Whether it’s an oval or a road course, whether it’s in an IndyCar or a stock car. I love going there and seeing so much history. It’s funny, the oval at Indianapolis in Cup car is like racing on a road course. So now we will be racing on the road course. I love that we are adding more and more road courses. There are a lot of fans that love road course racing and it’s adding different markets. As for us at Trackhouse Racing, every time we get an opportunity to turn left and right we are better. We get another chance this weekend in Indianapolis.” DOES THE MOUNTING PRESSURE OF MAKING IT INTO THE PLAYOFFS BOTHER YOU? “I feel like if you’re a racecar driver and you don’t like pressure, you’re in the wrong business. As a driver, you always have pressure, whether it’s from sponsors to perform, the playoffs or something else. That’s why we race.” ERIK JONES, NO. 43 PETTY’S GARAGE CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 25th IN STANDINGSWITH HOW ICONIC INDIANAPOLIS IS TO NASCAR’S HISTORY, WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS WITH THE SERIES MOVING THE EVENT FROM THE TRACK’S OVAL TO THE ROAD COURSE? “I think it is kind of bittersweet in a way. Obviously, we have been on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval since 1994, and all of the races have been run there. It is always a cool feeling going in there and getting to run the oval, but I think we realized it was time to change it up and do something different. The road course will be its own unique race. I think it still holds a lot of prestige. Anytime you can win a race at Indianapolis, it is a big moment for anyone’s career.”
“I am excited to get there. It is going to be a totally different feeling than the normal of the ‘Brickyard,’ but I think it is going to be the same feeling if you can win that race.” COREY LAJOIE, NO. 7 DIAMOND CREEK WATER CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 29th IN STANDINGS“Based off the Xfinity race at the GP course last year, the Cup Series should put on a great show at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend. I loved the Oval, but I’m excited for the challenge of learning a new track. It’s hard to learn without the tools that some teams have with Xfinity opportunities or simulators, but we’ll get it figured out during that single practice on Saturday. I’ve been gaining confidence on road courses so we’ll continue to push for a top 20 result with the Diamond Creek Water Chevy Camaro this weekend.” Chevrolet NASCAR Cup Series StatisticsManufacturers Championships:Total (1949-2020): 39First title for Chevrolet: 1958Highest number of consecutive titles: 13 (2003-15) Years Won: 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 Drivers Championships:Total (1949-2020): 32First Chevrolet champion: Buck Baker (1957)Highest number of consecutive titles: 7 (2005-11)Most Recent: Chase Elliott (2020) Years Won: 1957, 1960, 1961, 1973, 1976, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2020 Event Victories:Record for total race wins in single season: 26 (2007) 2021 STATISTICS: Wins: 12Poles: 4Laps Led: 2,472Top-five finishes: 46Top-10 finishes: 102 CHEVROLET IN NASCAR CUMULATIVE STATISTICS:Total Chevrolet race wins: 807 (1949 to date)Poles won to date: 721Laps led to date: 239,177Top-five finishes to date: 4,111Top-10 finishes to date: 8,504Stage wins: 20 – Chase Elliott (Daytona RC), William Byron (Homestead, Pocono 2, Road America), Kyle Larson (Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Atlanta x2, Kansas, Dover x2, Charlotte x3, Sonoma x2, Nashville), Kurt Busch (Nashville, Pocono 1, Atlanta 2), Tyler Reddick (Road America) Total NASCAR Cup wins by corporation, 1949 to date General Motors: 1,141 Chevrolet: 807 Pontiac: 154 Oldsmobile: 115 Buick: 65 Ford: 809 Ford: 709 Mercury: 96 Lincoln: 4 Fiat Chrysler Automobiles: 467 Dodge: 217 Plymouth: 191 Chrysler: 59 Toyota: 158