All posts by ARP Trish

Semifinal Finish for Pedregon Racing’s Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat

at Charlotte’s NHRA Four-Wide Nationals

  • Veteran Funny Car driver Cruz Pedregon qualified No. 6 and was the top Mopar Dodge//SRT performer at the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Four-Wide Nationals with a semifinal finish at zMAX Dragway
  • Reigning Funny Car world champion Matt Hagan battled from No.11 qualifying position to win first elimination round quad aboard his blue and white Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
  • DSR’s Ron Capps earned No. 3 position on Funny Car eliminations ladder with solid Q1 and Q2 bonus points-earning qualifying runs aboard his chrome blue Pennzoil-schemed Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
  • Top Fuel pilot Leah Pruett qualified third with her DSR Mopar Dodge//SRT dragster but saw early opening run issues shorten her day

May 16, 2021, Concord, North Carolina – After a two-year hiatus, the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Camping World Drag Racing Series’ Four-Wide Nationals returned to zMax Dragway with Funny Car driver Cruz Pedregon closing out the weekend as the top performer for Mopar and Dodge//SRT brands. The veteran driver wheeled his Snap-on Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat to a semifinal finish from the No. 6 qualifying position he earned for Sunday’s elimination rounds.

While the four-wide format hadn’t been run at the Charlotte-area track since 2019, just a month had passed since the Las Vegas Four-Wide Nationals had yielded promising results for the Don Schumacher Racing (DSR) team with Matt Hagan’s runner-up performance and Ron Capps semifinal finish. Pedregon, for his part, was looking to build and capitalize on his team’s steady improvement through the first three races of the 2021 season.

The No. 6 seed’s best qualifying run of 3.957 seconds at 322.81 mph put Pedregon Racing in the company of fellow Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat drivers Capps and Hagan for a first round quad elimination along with No. 14 qualifier Cory Lee. Pedregon deep-staged his HEMI®-powered ride and cut a perfect 0.000-second light, and while he wasn’t able to beat the round winner Hagan, his 4.032/323.74 run was enough to give him a holeshot finish to eliminate Capps and advance to the next round.

Pedregon once again crossed the stripe second, this time to No. 2 seed Alexis DeJoria, and defeated Hagan and No. 7 Bob Tasca III to find himself in a position to battle for the event win in the final against DeJoria, No. 2 seed J.R. Todd and No. 1 qualifier John Force. While this time he finished ahead of DeJoria, Pedregon ended the day as a satisfied semifinalist after he was unable to catch runner-up finisher J.R. Todd and event winner John Force.

Hagan and his crew had their work cut out for them heading into eliminations after struggles in qualifying had the blue and white Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat starting from the No. 11 position. Never one to be deterred by a challenge, the reigning Funny Car world champion, came out fighting with a stout 3.936-second elapsed time pass to win the first elimination quad. That set up a second round rematch with Pedregon and brought DeJoria and Tasca into the mix. While Hagan was quickest out of the gate, he saw his early lead erased by a mechanical setback and could only watch as Pedregon and DeJoria advanced past him and to the final quad.

For his part as the top qualified HEMI®-powered Dodge, Capps was looking to repeat his 2017 winning performance at this four-wide event from the No. 3 seeded position after earning that spot with the second quickest runs in both Saturday sessions and collecting four bonus points for his efforts. Aboard his chrome blue Pennzoil Synthetics NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat, Capps drove a solid 3.991 seconds/273.88 mph run with a 0.067-second reaction time, but despite Pedregon’s slower run, his opponent’s perfect reaction time put Capps third across the finish and ended his day prematurely. 

In Top Fuel action, Leah Pruett was feeling pretty confident about her chances to perform well in eliminations after taking her white and blue Mopar Dodge//SRT Top Fuel dragster to the No. 3 position in the opening qualifying session with a 3.718 second elapsed time run. That performance put her in the top half of the field for the 44th time in 50 opportunities, including the past seven events. In the opening Top Fuel quad against Antron Brown, Shawn Langdon, and Krista Baldwin, Pruett had a respectable start but was forced to abandon the run after issues surfaced early.

The NHRA’s 70th anniversary season continues with the next event set to take place this coming weekend, May 21-23, near Houston, Texas, at the Mopar Express Lane SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil, the first of five national events for which Mopar and Dodge//SRT share title sponsorship duties this season.

ADDITIONAL NOTES and QUOTES

FUNNY CAR:

Matt Hagan, DSR Mopar Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
(No. 11 Qualifier – 4.058 seconds at 260.71 mph)
Round 1: (0.095-second reaction time, 3.936 seconds at 325.06 mph) wins round ahead of No. 6 Cruz Pedregon (0.000/4.032/323.74) and defeats No. 3 Ron Capps (0.067/3.991/273.88) and No. 14 Cory Lee (0.104/4.392/251.58)

Round 2: (0.055/4.036/307.51) defeats No. 7 Bob Tasca III but loses to No. 6 Cruz Pedregon (0.091/4.559/189.84) and round winner No.2 Alexis DeJoria (0.090/3.929/320.13)

“There’s a million things that can go wrong with a fuel Funny Car, and we had something bite us this weekend. My crew chief Dickie Venables and Mike Knudsen did a great job recovering after qualifying. We struggled in qualifying as far as getting a handle on the race track so we went into Sunday morning not really knowing what to expect, and they did an amazing job of reeling the clutch back in and not only getting the car to make a full pull down the race track, but we ran a really good 3.93. I felt like we were on pace to go back up there and do the same thing on that last lap but we had a parts failure and it cost us the run. Unfortunately, that’s part of racing; that’s what happens when you push things to the limit, it happens sometimes. That is the humble part of drag racing.”


Ron Capps, DSR Pennzoil NAPA Auto Parts Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
(No. 3 Qualifier – 3.943 seconds at 325.30 mph – Four bonus points for second-quickest run in Q2 and Q3 sessions)
Round 1: (0.067-second reaction time, 3.991 seconds at 273.88 mph) defeats No. 14 Cory Lee (0.104/4.392/251.58) but loses to No. 6 Cruz Pedregon (0.000/4.032/323.74) and round winner

No. 11 Matt Hagan (0.095/3.936/325.06)

“NHRA drag racing is definitely a ‘right place at the right time’ kind of sport. We had such a great car on Saturday. It was quick and consistent. My crew chiefs ‘Guido’ (Dean Antonelli) and John Medlen, and this entire Pennzoil/NAPA AutoCare team put a great race car underneath me time and time again. The car was running really well today in round one; the incremental numbers were great and then it just put a couple of cylinders out and spun the tires downtrack, and it hadn’t done that all weekend. You couple that with the fact that one of my opponents had a perfect light (0.0 reaction time) or what we call a ‘bad red light,’ and I’ve had some of those myself, and when you’re on the good side of it, that’s what happens, and today he was on the good side of it and beat us to the finish line. But, a win is coming soon. We’re getting these ‘close call’ races out of the way early in the season. You can’t call it bad luck because we’re running really well. I’m excited about these next few races for sure, but we’ll have to wait until next year to get another four-wide trophy.”

Cruz Pedregon, Pedregon Racing Snap-On Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat

(No. 6 Qualifier – 3.957 seconds at 322.81 mph)

Round 1: (0.000-second reaction time, 4.032 seconds at 323.74 mph) finishes second to No. 11 Matt Hagan (0.095/3.936/325.06) and defeats No. 3 Ron Capps (0.067/3.991/273.88) and No. 14 Cory Lee (0.104/4.392/251.58)

Round 2: (0.094/3.971/319.52) finishes second to No. 2 Alexis DeJoria (0.090/3.929/320.13) and defeats No. 11 Matt Hagan (0.055/4.036/307.51) and No. 7 Bob Tasca III (0.091/4.559/189.84)

Round 3: (0.121/3.934/326.87) defeats No. 2 Alexis DeJoria (0.064/4.057/309.49) but loses to runner-up No. 2 J.R. Todd (0.063/3.934/326.87) and event winner John Force (0.065/3.916/328.78)

“I’m very happy with our results today. A semifinal finish at the Four-Wide Nationals is great. What I am especially most proud of is the way that our Dodge Charger Hellcat ran in the finals. We ran right with the (event) winner John Force, and J.R. (Todd) has been running well and we outran him actually. So, to have those results after a little bit of a slow start, I think we’re now getting to where we should be. I always said it was going to be four or five races before we would really start to come together and here we are at the fourth race, so I feel good about that. I feel good about Houston. I’m ready to go to the Mopar Express Lane SpringNationals. I’m feeling good and I feel like I drove well and we’ll now get ready for Houston.”


TOP FUEL:

Leah Pruett, DSR Mopar Dodge//SRT Dragster
(No. 3 Qualifier – 3.718 seconds at 324.59 mph  One bonus point for third-quickest run of the session)

Round 1: (0.095-second reaction time, 4.310 seconds at 193.32 mph) loses to No. 11 Shawn Langdon (0.059/3.947/245.67), No. 14 Krista Baldwin (0.117/3.855/319,52) and round winner No. 6 Antron Brown (0.063/3.804/315.56)

“We were definitely ready to have a very long Sunday, and it never ceases to amaze us the number of ways we can find to not have a dream day, and not win. It doesn’t matter how many accumulated years of drag racing experience you have, there will always be something new to arise. For us, it was having a clutch disc that wore at the step, and that caused a whole chain reaction of events that ultimately led to the car being shut off. We’ve spent the entire day since then deciphering the set of circumstances that caused that to occur. But, the upside of it is we’re always adapting and coming up with new ways to solve issues, and as you do that, you find new ways to become more consistent in those details. It’s early in the season, our momentum is still carrying even though the win lights may not show it. We have a couple of days to turn this around. We’ll be testing on Monday, picking away at what we found here and we’ll get ready for an incredible Houston outing with our Pennzoil and Mopar family.”

Clark Edges Out Alder on Last Lap Push for Pole in F4 U.S. Road America Qualifying

Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin (May 16, 2021)- Canadian driver Mac Clark prevailed in a back-and-forth qualifying battle with Jason Alder, Bijoy Garg and Noel Leon to capture his first career Formula 4 United States Championship Powered Honda pole position. The top four times were separated by .671-seconds, with Clark edging out championship points leader Alder on the final circuit by a narrow 0.189-second margin. 

Clark turned a lap of 2:18.756-seconds in the No. 26 Gonella Racing Ligier JS F4, setting the new track record.

“Wow, it was a great session,” said Clark. “Today we managed to put the No. 26 Gonella Racing machine on pole. We managed to put it in when it really mattered. I couldn’t be happier with giving Gonella Racing its first pole position. The team is top notch, and the car was so fast on the straights.”

First out of the pits, Alder held the pole by early in the session, matching Clark, Garg’s and Leon’s times each lap. Without using the draft, the Velocity Racing Development driver looked like he was going to take pole with a 2:18.945-second time until Clark strategically used the slipstream from lapped traffic to propel him just enough to clench the point.

“We were first out and using the draft here would have been beneficial, but we still got a first-row start, I am happy with our position,” said Alder. “Qualifying was close and I know the racing is also going to be tight on Sunday and I am so excited for another winning result.”

Garg missed the test day earlier in the week to race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway as part of the Grand Prix weekend. Traveling overnight to Road America, Garg got up to speed quickly in practice and battled for pole in qualifying, holding the top spot for a couple non-consecutive laps. Garg ran a lap time of 2:19.132-seconds in the No. 6 Jay Howard Driver Development CSU/One Cure/Lucas Oil Racing car, just ahead of Noel’s 2:19.427-seconds in DEForce Racing’s No. 19 machine. Serving a five-grid penalty that carried over from Road Atlanta, Noel will now start ninth.  

“I am happy with a P3, especially jumping straight into qualifying and after being out of the F4 for so long,” said Bijoy. “I would have liked pole obviously, but the second row is a good place to start especially with the draft into Turn 1. A lot can happen in the races with how long the straights are, so we are looking forward to them.”

Aries Deukmedjian will be striking distance from Clark and Alder, starting from the second row in the opening round. Deukmedjian’s personal best time of 2:19.512-seconds was only .756-seconds off Clark’s pace. Positioned in fourth, the Floridian young talent was the top driver for the seven-car Crosslink/Kiwi Motorsport squad.

VRD driver Nico Christodoulou and JHDD rookie Matt Christensen will start from Row 3. In his F4 U.S. debut event, Trevor Russell will take the green from Row 4 in seventh in the No. 32 TR Racing Ligier JS F4, sharing a row with Crosslink/Kiwi rookie Ryan Shehan. Momentum Motorsports’ Lucas Mann rounded out the top 10.

chevy racing–nascar–dover–post race

NASCAR CUP SERIES DOVER INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY DRYDENE 400TEAM CHEVY POST-RACE NOTES & QUOTES MAY 16, 2021

TOP TEAM CHEVY UNOFFICIAL RACE RESULTS:POS.   DRIVER1st      ALEX BOWMAN, NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE2nd     KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 NATIONSGUARD CAMARO ZL1 1LE3rd     CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS CAMARO ZL1 1LE4th      WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 AXALTA CAMARO ZL1 1LE8th      TYLER REDDICK, NO. 8 CAT LINKAGE PINS CAMARO ZL1 1LE 9th      DANIEL SUAREZ, NO. 99 COMMSCOPE CAMARO ZL1 1LE
TOP FIVE UNOFFICIAL RACE RESULTS: POS.  DRIVER1st      Alex Bowman (Chevrolet)2nd     Kyle Larson (Chevrolet)3rd     Chase Elliott (Chevrolet)4th      William Byron (Chevrolet)5th      Joey Logano (Ford)
The NASCAR Cup Series season continues next weekend at Circuit of the Americas for the EchoPark Texas Grand Prix on Sunday, May 23, at 2:30 p.m. ET. Live coverage can be found on FS1, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90. TEAM CHEVY POST-RACE NOTES AND QUOTES:ALEX BOWMAN, NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE – RACE WINNERALEX BOWMAN WINS AT DOVER AND HE GETS HIS CREW CHIEF’S (GREG IVE) FIRST OFFICIAL VICTORY AS A CREW CHIEF AT THIS RACETRACK. ALEX, YOU JUST SAID IT’S ALL ABOUT THE PIT CREW. WHAT CAN YOU SAY ABOUT THE CHEMISTRY OF THIS TEAM RIGHT NOW AND WHAT YOU’RE ABLE TO DO? “We won Richmond (Raceway) and then had a really rough couple of weeks there. We went to some really good racetracks for us and struggled. I told the guys last week, ‘we’re still the same team that did it at Richmond’. This is another really good place for us. I’m just so pumped for Ally. It feels right to put the 48 back in victory lane here after how many races that this car has won here.”
“Mr. H (Rick Hendrick) is here. I don’t think I’ve won with him here before, so that’s really cool. Just so proud of this pit crew. It was obviously a rough off season for us and a big void to fill. Not that we’re ever going to fill the void that Rowdy left, but Allen is doing a really good job and the whole pit crew is doing a really good job. Thanks to my spotter, Kevin Hamlin, for couching me there at the end. It was fun racing Kyle (Larson) and glad to get Hendrick Motorsports another win.”
KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 NATIONSGUARD CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 2ndIT LOOKED LIKE YOU WERE GOING TO BE ABLE TO GET BACK TO BATTLE FOR THE LEAD. WHAT DID YOU LACK THERE AT THE END?“Yeah, I just felt like all of us HMS guys were pretty equal, so I felt like whoever got out to the lead was going to be hard to beat. Their team (No. 48 Chevy) just did a really good job on that pit stop and gained control of the race. I never really had a shot after that. That one restart, I got to his bumper and got him loose, but the 4 (Kevin Harvick) was coming so we just had to let each other go. Hard to be disappointed with a second, because like I said, I felt like I did everything I could. We led a lot of laps and won both Stages there, so it was good points, but we would have liked to be one spot better.”  “But all in all, a good day for our NationsGuard Chevy and what a day for Hendrick Motorsports and Chevrolet. Thanks to everyone back at the shop, the engine shop. It’s pretty amazing because I don’t know the last time Mr. H (Rick Hendrick) had all four of his cars in the top-four, but that is a pretty special day, for sure.” CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 3rd“I really felt like we were pretty close, balance-wise. It was just kind of a matter of how your restart went and where you fell in line, unfortunately for us. But I’m happy for Hendrick Motorsports. I don’t know when the last time that finish has happened. It’s probably been a while for any team.” 
WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 AXALTA CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 4thFINISHING 1-2-3-4 FOR HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS WAS A DOMINATE DAY FOR THE ORGANIZATION. “Yeah, that was awesome. For us to finish 1-2-3-4 is just a credit to a lot of great people at the shop, Chevrolet, Axalta, and all the people that support us to get us the resources; and then our teams, the crew chiefs, drivers and pit crews executing really good races. For us, it’s been going for a while. We’ve just got to get a little bit. It sucks to be fourth, but I think we’re close. We just have to work on some things on our car, get the right feels, but we’re getting really close. So, we keep chipping away. We’ve had two fourth-place finishes in a row. We’ll take it and move on.”
RICK HENDRICK, OWNER, HENDRICK MOTORSPORTSTO GET A FIRST, SECOND, THIRD, AND FOURTH PLACE FINISH TODAY, WHAT DOES THAT MEAN TO YOU IN THE LIST OF ACCOMPLISHMENTS?“I can guarantee you this has been the most nervous I’ve been in a race. It was a great day for the organization. Alex (Bowman), congratulations to him. This is a sign of the guys working together and bringing good stuff to the track. I don’t think it’ll hit me maybe until tomorrow that we were able to finish 1-2-3-4. That’s pretty hard to do. Things can happen; pit stops, tires, anything. But that’s a first and we’ll take it. It was a great day for us.”
TYLER REDDICK, NO. 8 CAT LINKAGE PINS CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 8th“I’m very proud of my No. 8 Cat Linkage Pins Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE team today. We really had to fight hard today for our eighth-place finish at Dover, especially after the speeding penalty on pit road after our first stop of the day. Entry seemed to be the biggest issue for us during the first half of the race. I just needed better rotation to get through that portion of both ends of the track quicker. My crew chief, Randall Burnett, and the team did a good job of keeping after the track with our adjustments today and giving me feedback based on our SMT data. We really hit on something towards the end of Stage 2, which allowed me to get up in the top 10 for the start of Stage 3. Track position was key today, even more so than fresh tires for us, so once we got up in the top 10, we did everything we could to say there, even though that meant staying out and making it a much longer final run for us on tires when those mid-stage cautions came out in Stage 3. It was a battle to hang on during that last run, but it paid off for us today with our fifth top-10 finish in the last seven races.” DANIEL SUAREZ, NO. 99 COMMSCOPE CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 9th BEFORE THIS RACE, YOU SAID YOU’D BE HAPPY WITH A TOP 10. YOU CALLED IT. HOW GOOD WAS THIS RACE FOR YOU?“We have to work hard. The No. 99 CommScope Chevy Camaro was strong. Most of the race, I felt like the entire race, we were probably a top-15 car. But, with good adjustments, we gained some track position and that gave us the opportunity to finish in the top-10. There is still a lot of work to do, definitely. Right there at the end, I was tight. I was against the No. 11 (Denny Hamlin), the No. 41 (Cole Custer) and all these guys, but we were able to hold them off and get a decent finish. But we have to keep working and win a trophy.”
AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 HUK PERFORMANCE FISHING CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 14th“We had a decent Huk Fishing Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE today at Dover International Speedway. Overall, the balance of our RCR Chevy was pretty good to start the race. We found a line at the bottom of the track that worked well but I was worried about tire wear, so I didn’t move down there until closer to the end of the stage. We were pretty good in Stage 2 but handling was just sort of blah during the middle of the run when cloud cover cooled off the track and caused the Huk Chevy to become freer. It came back to us to end the Stage and we were able to secure a few stage points. At the end of the race, the cloud cover returned and that effected our handling. We just couldn’t keep up with the track. We’ll regroup as a team and head to the Circuit of the Americas next week.” ROSS CHASTAIN, NO. 42 MOOSE FRATERNITY CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 15th“15th – What I would have given a few weeks ago to finish 15th. But today, we showed a lot more promise on this No. 42 Moose Fraternity Chevrolet. We had more speed than that, we just got really tight. The last set of tires, we made no adjustments. We were the best we were all day on our second-to-last run. On that set of tires, we ran a few laps. A caution came out, we did the opposite of the leaders. Didn’t do anything to the car, fired back off tight; very tight. I’m kind of baffled why that was. So, I just kind of had to hold on and not get into anyone’s way too much, and ran 15th there at the end. Man, it did feel good to run up towards tenth. We’ll keep building.”  ERIK JONES, NO. 43 MEDALLION BANK CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 22nd“Just struggled all day with the Medallion Bank Chevy. Never could get the feel we were looking for. We fought all day to try and bring home a decent finish. Hopefully have some notes to make some changes when we come back again in the fall.”

Troy Coughlin Jr. races to another final-round, this time at Four-Wide NHRA Nationals

CONCORD, N.C. (May 16) — Troy Coughlin Jr.’s second attempt at four-wide drag racing was markedly better than his first as he wheeled his JEGS.com Elite Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro to a final-round appearance in Sunday’s NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at ZMax Dragway.
Coughlin narrowly missed out on a runner-up finish, crossing third in the final foursome of cars, just .004 seconds behind Mason McGaha and .010 back of first-time Pro Stock winner Dallas Green. Still, the always-smiling third-generation pro took a lot of pride in bettering his first-four-wide race one month ago in Las Vegas, where he bowed out in Round 1.
“We turned on a couple of win lights today, and that’s exciting,” Coughlin said. “I always want more from myself and if I had tightened up my reaction times a little more we could have had an even better day but I’m still really happy to regain some momentum.
“Credit my guys — Mark Ingersoll, Eric Luzinski, Kelly Murphy, Steven Hurley and Kyle Bates — they gave me an awesome car every round. As a driver, there’s simply nothing better than knowing you have the best team in the sport behind you. 
“Congrats to Dallas also. I’ve raced him before in the sportsman ranks and he’s a really nice guy from a great family. It’s neat to see him win his first Wally at the pro level.”Coughlin opened the day with a 6.543-second pass at 210.24 mph, advancing out of the first foursome along with current points leader and multi-time series champion Greg Anderson (6.534 at 210.05 mph), with Deric Kramer (6.561 at 210.37 mph) and Cristian Cuadra (-.069 red light) being dismissed. 
He then won his semifinal foursome with a 6.549 at 210.70 mph, moving to the final round along with Fernando Cuadra Jr. (6.575 at 210.73 mph). That time it was a late-starting Anderson (6.538 at 210.28 mph) and Chris McGaha (6.575 at  210.60 mph) getting sent home.
In the final round, Coughlin made another great pass of 6.545 at 210.80 mph. However, although he cut a decent light of .035 seconds, Glenn — who had a .030 reaction time and a 6.540 at 210.80 mph and Mason McGaha, who left with a 0.018 and ran a 6.558 at 209.23 mph, were able to edge him at the other end. Fernando Cuadra Jr. fouled out by  -.038 seconds.
“Anytime you see numbers like that it truly is anyone’s game,” Coughlin said. “That’s exciting looking forward because we have just gotten started and there are a lot of races ahead of us where we can shine.”No one will need to wait very long to race again as the NHRA tour quickly moves to Southeast Texas for next weekend’s Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil at Houston Raceway Park, a facility that is also sponsored by Pennzoil.
“I love racing in Houston and in Texas, overall,” Coughlin said. “The fans down there are super friendly and they really love and understand Pro Stock. I feel a lot of confidence in the JEGS/Elite team and expect we’ll contend for another win there. We almost won in Florida and had our chances again today in Charlotte so it’s just a matter of all the pieces falling into place.
“The Houston track has a lot of family history for us and I’d love to add to it next Sunday.”

RCR Post Race Report – Dover 400

Austin Dillon and the No. 3 Huk Performance Fishing Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE Team Earn Top-15 Finish at Dover International Speedway 




14th



14th


11th

“We had a decent Huk Performance Fishing Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE today at Dover International Speedway. Overall, the balance of our RCR Chevy was pretty good to start the race. We found a line at the bottom of the track that worked well but I was worried about tire wear, so I didn’t move down there until closer to the end of the stage. We were pretty good in Stage 2 but handling was just sort of blah during the middle of the run when cloud cover cooled off the track and caused our Chevy to become freer. It came back to us to end the Stage and we were able to secure a few stage points. At the end of the race, the cloud cover returned and that affected our handling. We just couldn’t keep up with the track. We’ll regroup as a team and head to the Circuit of the Americas next week.”


-Austin Dillon 


Tyler Reddick and No. 8 Cat Linkage Pins Chevy Team Battle to Eighth-Place Finish at Dover International Speedway




8th



12th


15th

“I’m very proud of my No. 8 Cat Linkage Pins Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE team today. We really had to fight hard for our eighth-place finish at Dover, especially after the speeding penalty on pit road after our first stop of the day. Entry seemed to be the biggest issue for us during the first half of the race. I just needed better rotation to get through that portion of both ends of the track quicker. My crew chief, Randall Burnett, and the team did a good job of keeping after the track with our adjustments today and giving me feedback based on our SMT data. We really hit on something towards the end of Stage 2, which allowed me to get up in the top 10 for the start of Stage 3. Track position was key today, even more so than fresh tires for us, so once we got up in the top 10 we did everything we could to stay there, even though that meant staying out and making it a much longer final run for us on tires when those mid-stage cautions came out in Stage 3. It was a battle to hang on during that last run, but it paid off for us today with our fifth top-10 finish in the last seven races.”
-Tyler Reddick

chevy racing–nhra–concord– recap

CHEVROLET RACING IN NATIONAL HOT ROD ASSOCIATION NGK NTK NHRA FOUR-WIDE NATIONALS ZMAX DRAGWAY IN CONCORD, NORTH CAROLINA RACE RECAP MAY 16, 2021                                                                                                                        
Chevrolet rolls to two victories in Charlotte four-wide format • No. 1 qualifier John Force grabs 152nd career Funny Car win• Dallas Glenn earns first Pro Stock victory in fourth race• No. 1 qualifier Brittany Force is runner-up in Top Fuel
CONCORD, N.C. (May 16, 2021) – John Force won the inaugural Funny Car four-wide event at MAX Dragway in 2010. He returned to the winner’s platform in 2021.
Force, who turned 72 on May 4, drove the PEAK/BlueDEF Platinum Chevrolet Camaro SS to the No. 1 qualifier position for the NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals and ran the table in eliminations to secure his 152nd career victory. 
“I pulled it off,” said Force, who dedicated the victory to track owner Bruton Smith. “I ran my big mouth, said I can do this, I’m going to win this. I love this guy and everything he’s done for the sport.
“I don’t have much time left, but when you have a crew chief like Danny Hood and Tim Fabrisi and all these guys who take this old man and give him strength, what a run.”
After John Force Racing’s trio of Chevrolet drivers took off the majority of the 2020 National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) season to regroup because of the COVID-19 pandemic, they have come back strong through four National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Camping World Drag Racing Series events.
Force, runner-up at Atlanta two weeks earlier, registered his 161st career Funny Car low qualifier honor on the way to his first victory since Indianapolis in September 2019. Teammate Robert Hight, driving the Auto Club of Southern California Camaro SS Funny Car, was runner-up in the season opener at Gainesville and the No. 1 qualifier for the Las Vegas four-wide event. Top Fuel standout Brittany Force was also the top qualifier at Las Vegas and runner-up at zMAX Dragway.
Brittany Force came up just short in the Top Fuel final quad. Driving the Flav-R-Pac Chevrolet dragster, Force recorded a 3.723-second pass at 333.16 mph to finish runner-up to reigning class champion Steve Torrence’s 3.716-second run.
Force, who set both ends of the track record in qualifying No. 1 for the second time this season and 22nd in her career, upped her speed record from 333.08 to 333.49 mph in winning her opening quad. 
Dallas Glenn, a KB Racing crew member for 22 of Jason Line’s career Pro Stock victories, picked up his first Wally in his fourth Pro Stock race. Glenn, driving the Rad Torque Systems Camaro SS, edged Mason McGaha’s Harlow Sammons of Odessa Camaro SS at the line in the final quad. 
“From the outside watching Jason, you can always see the little things, but driving is so much harder. Being a crew guy, you just make sure nothing falls off and you do everything you’re supposed to,” Glenn said. “Driving is I have to admit a lot harder than I thought to get to this point. I can’t thank RAD, KB Racing, Chevrolet for making this one possible.”
All four finalists, who have a total of 48 starts in Pro Stock between them, were seeking their first victory.
Greg Anderson, the No. 1 Pro Stock qualifier for the fourth time in as many events this season and the 110th time in his career, was aiming for his 97th career victory. He posted low elapsed time of 6.538 seconds in his semifinal quad but finished third and did not advance. Anderson, driving the HendrickCars.com Camaro SS, tied Tony Schumacher for third all time in round victories with 850. Warren Johnson is next with 874.
David Barton of Reading, Pennsylvania, drove his Chevrolet COPO Camaro to victory in Competition Eliminator.
Chevrolet drivers will make the quick turnaround for the Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil at Houston Raceway Park in Baytown, Texas, on May 21-23. In the 2020 event, which was postponed to October because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Aaron Stanfield earned his first Pro Stock victory in his Camaro SS.
AN INTERVIEW WITH FUNNY CAR WINNER JOHN FORCE (JOHN FORCE RACING, PEAK/BLUEDEF PLATINUM CHEVROLET CAMARO SS):YOU WANTED THAT ONE BAD, DIDN’T YOU?“Yeah, I ran my mouth and said I could win this for (track owner) Bruton (Smith). I really wanted to and it was in my heart. He’s done so much for me – things people don’t even know – to keep my head in the game. I dedicated this trophy to him. (Crew chief) Danny (Hood) is getting one, so is (co-crew chief) Tim Fabrisi.”
HOW EXCITED ARE YOU TO HAVE A RACE CAR LIKE YOU DO UNDERNEATH YOU?
“(Austin) Coil called Danny Hood last night and said ‘You’re really showing your stuff.’ Like Coil taught Danny how to run the dyno, he said Danny picked it up in one lesson and he’s picked up this race car. And now he’s all into it. Sometimes I wonder where’s Danny, but he’s at his computer. He’s got a good team around him. They’re all working together. And Robert (Hight) always works trying to help me. So, if you surround yourself – and I have a young team – the only thing old is me. Am I going to keep doing it? Today, I’m OK. Sometimes things just work right for me. I won the inaugural, and my mindset (today) was to do it.”
COMING BACK AFTER LAST YEAR AND GETTING A WIN, HOW MUCH CONFIDENCE DOES THAT GIVE YOU?“It says that I can at least compete in the points and do good.”
HOW DOES THIS FEEL?
“I’m telling you, time is everything. God’s got a plan for me. I won the inaugural four-wide and I met (track owner) Bruton (Smith) a hundred years ago in a coffee shop early in the morning. He said he wanted to meet with me when he built Bristol and I saw the fire in his belly, where he was going. We went down the road and did our thing. I called out to Bruton and what I did was I insinuated that I was going to win this race. Then I said, ‘You can’t do that.’ Then I said I’m sure going to try. For all that he’s done for so many of us, the sport of drag racing, NASCAR, INDYCAR, so I go and win the race and Bruton is going to take the trophy home. This make me so proud in the world that I live in.”
CONNECT THE DOTS FROM TAKING LAST YEAR OFF BASICALLY TO BEING BACK IN THE WINNER’S CIRCLE.
“You don’t realize how much you love something. It’s a wakeup call. Don’t ever take the job you love for granted, or the people. We’re back here. These kids are tough out there. The car was prepared right by my young team and I halfway did my job. I’m excited. I’m lucky, I have a job. I didn’t have a job last year and it was painful.”
CHEVROLET FROM THE COCKPIT:
TOP FUEL:
BRITTANY FORCE, JOHN FORCE RACING, MONSTER ENERGY/FLAV-R-PAC CHEVROLET DRAGSTER (No. 1 qualifier; runner-up): “Great weekend for this team. We came out Friday Q1, set track record at 3.66 and stole that No. 1 spot. Then, going into Saturday, we struggled. We didn’t get down the racetrack and that was tough for this team. We had a run that was in the cold and the best track conditions and now we needed to reset for race day. So, this team found that. David Grubnic and Max Savage set up this race car and it ran killer runs all day. Consistent all day long. We ended up runner-up. We made it to a final; that’s huge for this team. I’m so proud of all my Flav-R-Pac guys and proud to be teamed up with David Grubnic. I struggled on the second run and just messed up on the Christmas Tree and was so in my head about it, and Grubnic pulled me aside and told me to stop messing with it, I’m overthinking it and go out and drive the car because I know how to do it and rip their throats out. And that’s what we went out there doing. We brought everything to the line the best we could. Unfortunately, it wasn’t our day, but this will carry us into next weekend.”
FUNNY CAR:
ROBERT HIGHT, JOHN FORCE RACING, AUTO CLUB OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (fell in first round): “We’ve had some issues, but we think we know what it is now. We’re going to stay and test tomorrow. I’m not worried, this Auto Club team, Jimmy Prock, Chris Cunningham and all the guys, they’re working hard to figure this out and once we do, we’ll be hard to catch. We’ll make a couple of runs tomorrow and be ready for Houston next weekend.”

PRO STOCK:
DALLAS GLENN, KB RACING, RAD TORQUE SYSTEMS, CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (won first national event): “To be honest, I don’t even think it’s hit me yet. I’m just trying to enjoy everything I can. I’ve never experienced it on this side. It’s super emotional. This is a whole new perspective for me and these cars are so much fun, but they’re hard to drive. The results just came a little sooner than we were expecting.”
GREG ANDERSON, KB RACING, HENDRICKCARS.COM CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (No. 1 qualifier; fell in semifinals): “It always feels good to get that No. 1 and start the weekend off on solid footing, but to do it with the HendrickCars.com Chevy Camaro just makes this really special. We’ve had a hot rod all year, and this Chevrolet has been in top form at every race.”
TROY COUGHLIN JR., ELITE MOTORSPORTS, JEGS.COM CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (final quad competitor): “We turned on a couple of win lights today, and that’s exciting. I always want more from myself and if I had tightened up my reaction times a little more we could have had an even better day but I’m still really happy to regain some momentum. Credit my guys — Mark Ingersoll, Eric Luzinski, Kelly Murphy, Steven Hurley and Kyle Bates — they gave me an awesome car every round. As a driver, there’s simply nothing better than knowing you have the best team in the sport behind you.”

chevy racing–nascar–dover–post race

NASCAR CUP SERIES DOVER INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY DRYDENE 400 TEAM CHEVY PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT MAY 16, 2021

 ALEX BOWMAN CAPTURES THE WIN AT DOVERHendrick Motorsports Gives Camaro ZL1 1LE a 1-2-3-4 Finish DOVER, DEL. – (May 16, 2021) – Alex Bowman led the charge to the checkered flag in the Drydene 400 at Dover International Speedway to score his second win of the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series (NCS) season in his No. 48 Ally Camaro ZL1 1LE. It was Bowman’s fourth career victory in NASCAR’s premier series, and fourth top-10 finish in 11 races at the popular one-mile concrete oval track. The 28-year-old Hendrick Motorsports driver’s trip to victory lane at the Monster Mile gave Chevrolet its fourth win on the season, bringing the Bowtie Brand’s all-time win record to 799 victories in the NASCAR Cup Series. The triumph gives Hendrick Motorsports its 21st win at Dover, the most of all teams at the venue, and the team’s 267th all-time in the Series. The victory brings Car Owner, Rick Hendrick, and Hendrick Motorsports just two race wins away from breaking Petty Enterprises’ all-time win record and becoming the winningest team in NASCAR history, one of stock car racing’s greatest achievements.  It was more than just a win for Hendrick Motorsports as the organization’s drivers swept the top-four finishing positions, becoming just the third organization in NASCAR Cup Series history to finish 1-2-3-4 in a single event. Hendrick Motorsports joins an elite list to accomplish that feat, including Peter DePaolo Racing (1956 at Titusville; 1957 at North Wilkesboro) and Roush Fenway Racing (2005 at Homestead-Miami).  While the win was Bowman’s first visit to Victory Lane at the Monster Mile, it was a familiar finishing place for the No. 48 Chevrolet. Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion, Jimmie Johnson, captured a record-11 wins at the wheel of Hendrick’s No. 48, including the final win of his career in 2017. Bowman’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate, Kyle Larson, crossed the finish line in the runner-up position, after sweeping Stage One and Stage Two wins and leading a race-high 263 laps in his No. 5 NationsGuard Camaro ZL1 1LE. The impressive run gave the California-native his 10th top-10 finish in 13 races at Dover and his eighth top-10 this season. Chase Elliott, No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Camaro ZL1 1LE, finished third and William Byron, No. 24 Axalta Camaro ZL1 1LE, finished fourth to round out the historic top-four sweep. Tyler Reddick, No. 8 Cat Linkage Pins Camaro ZL1 1LE, finished eighth; and Daniel Suarez, No. 99 CommScope Camaro ZL1 1LE, finished ninth, giving Team Chevy six of the top-10 in the final running order.  Joey Logano (Ford) rounded out the top-five in the 400-lap, 400-mile event.    The 2021 NASCAR Cup Series continues with Race #14 on the season, the EchoPark Texas Grand Prix at Circuit of The Americas, on Sunday, May 23. FS1 will telecast the race live at 2:30 p.m. ET. Live coverage can also be found on PRN and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.
ALEX BOWMAN AND GREG IVES (CREW CHIEF), NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE, PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT: 
THE MODERATOR: We are joined by our race-winning driver, Alex Bowman, driver of the No. 48 ally Chevrolet. I believe we will also have his crew chief Greg Ives joining us. ALEX BOWMAN: Greg is yelling through this glass. He’s right outside the window looking like an idiot (laughter). THE MODERATOR: We’ll start with questions for Alex. Q. This was a track position game. How confident were you after you got the lead on the pit stop?ALEX BOWMAN: I think straight up the 5 was a little bit better than us. I knew that track position was key. Clean air was tough today, tougher than previous races here I feel like a little bit. I just felt like if I could keep the bottom closed off, it would pretty hard for him to get to me. If he did get to me, he would have to wear stuff out pretty bad. My pit crew I feel like won the race getting us off pit road there first. Man, just really cool to get to race Kyle, have such a great day for Hendrick Motorsports. Q. Mr. H said it’s pretty much a formality for you to sign an extension for multiple years. Do you feel any more comfortable in your future now than your typical you never know what’s going to happen?ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, I mean, I think so. Just being at Hendrick Motorsports is obviously where I want to be. I want to continue to work with ally and drive the 48 car. Like he said, we’ve been working on it. I think I want to be there, they want me to drive their race car. It’s cool to have a guy like Rick Hendrick say he wants you to continue driving his race car. It means a lot to me. Just a really special place to be. Appreciative for the opportunity. THE MODERATOR: To let everyone know, we’re also joined by crew chief Greg Ives. Questions for both Alex and Greg. Q. Alex, you had a runaway train with the four guys finishing in the top four, but you were the locomotive, not the caboose. How did it feel being the locomotive pulling that train to a 1-2-3-4 finish?ALEX BOWMAN: It’s pretty amazing. I feel like we’ve been off for a couple weeks, but we’re still the same race team that won in Richmond. We’ve been probably a little down on ourselves. Just tried to get the guys back motivated after a rough week last week in Darlington. Our pit stops were incredible today. To run 1-2-3-4 for HMS, so cool. I don’t know when the last time that happened was, but it’s been a long time. Really, really cool to see it. Q. Back to the pit stops and the pit crew. What was the reaction when you did the burnout in front of them? Was that for them because of what they were able to do today?ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, for sure. I mean, if we don’t beat the 5 off pit road, we probably don’t beat him in the race. I give them all the credit for the win there. I think without them we wouldn’t have gotten it done. So, appreciate Greg and all those guys working so hard throughout the week to continue to get better. They’ve been super-fast all year. It’s cool to win a race that you can really point back to them and say they’re who got it done. It was cool to be able to do that. I feel like other guys do that all the time. Their pit crews come to the wall. I go to do burnouts, I can’t even see any of my guys. I yelled at them, You guys got to come to the wall. It was really cool to get to do that. Q. What is the significance to you obviously for yourself in Victory Lane but also the 48, getting Rick closer to the record for most wins by one team?ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, I just want to be the guy that ties them and beats them, right? All four of us want to be that guy. It’s cool to put us one closer. Yeah, I mean, I want to be the guy that gets those wins for Mr. H because I feel like — not that any win is not special, they’re all really special, especially when you only have four of them, but I feel like I really want to be the guy that gets that done for him. Q. Did it take them long to get that fire out?ALEX BOWMAN: I don’t know. I stopped paying attention. It’s a long way from when I was on fire in New Hampshire, that’s for sure. Q. Alex, certainly Greg has talked about in the past about pit road. You talked about what the pit crew did today. How has Greg helped, what you’ve done to be better on pit road so far?ALEX BOWMAN: Greg, yells at me whenever I don’t maximize my lights and my segments, my rolling times, average speed. At Hendrick Motorsports we really like charts. In our meetings we talk about charts. There’s a lot of charts. Sometimes I look bad on those charts, and that’s when Greg yells at me (smiling). There’s a lot of different pit road charts and ways to look at it. He’s tries to do whatever he can to help me maximize each and every area. I feel like I’m gaining on it. There are definitely guys that do a little bit better of a job than me right now still. But that 48 pit crew makes up for it a little bit because they are super-fast each and every week. Q. Greg, you talked a couple weeks ago about the pit crew, your philosophy. You talked more about consistency. Talk about how you came to that philosophy. How does that philosophy work in a situation where it’s a winner-take-all pit stop?GREG IVES: Yeah, I mean, for me it’s all about, as Alex said, the details of it, but also letting the guys kind of play in their own space. They want to play at a high level. It’s all about creating comfort in that high level stress environment. The last couple weeks I’ve been putting them in a lot of changes, high stress environments, trying to get them to go fast when they have to make a lot of adjustments. I think it’s kind of like a batter swinging a heavier bat. I created some uncomfortable situations. Weren’t really looking good as far as times on pit road. Ultimately, I feel like for the adjustment stops we were doing a good job of making up time and figuring out where we had some deficit. It’s all about going down and talking. I talked to them this week. I broke down how well or how bad I was doing. Rolling that left front tire, I wasn’t doing it right last weekend, opened it up. We all worked through it. They’re not scared to tell the crew chief that I need to get better in the situation. I think ultimately being on the same platform as them, allowing them to make some mistakes, when mistakes come learning from them rather than scolding them. I really appreciate what they do, the family we’ve become. We’ve been together for five, six years now. It’s easy to work through complications when you have that open communication. Q. Obviously you won in the No. 48 car. Obviously, Jimmie Johnson has dominated for years here. What does that mean to you?ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, it means a lot to me. I was terrible here when I would come here for other teams. I got a little better when I started driving for (indiscernible) Motorsports. Had some okay runs here and there. My first or second time here for Hendrick Motorsports, I was struggling in practice. I would text Jimmie, bug him all night before the race trying to ask him what he does, how he approaches this place, what kind of line he runs. I just stuck to that, really tried to run like Jimmie did, run the Jimmie Johnson line, be tight against the black, super disciplined, super patient, kind of do some of the same things that he does with the throttle. Next year we came here, we ran second and third. Last year we had a solid top five. We’ve kind of been good here ever since. To win here with the 48 car is special, but to do it using I guess tips that Jimmie taught me is pretty cool. Q. Greg, Alex has described his relationship with you, it seems like you have similar personality, but how would you describe your relationship with Alex?GREG IVES: This question always is fun for Alex to pick on me a little bit. Yeah, I mean, we have a great relationship. That’s all because we love race cars, we love cars, we love racing and getting better.
The number one thing when it comes to a driver and my philosophy is the ability to learn. There’re things that go on in my head, sometimes it’s hard for me to talk about them or tell Alex. That’s why he calls me the riddler. Ultimately, I get to the point where I just tell him what I want and he does it. Today we were working through some brake pressure stuff, talked him through it. He didn’t get upset about it. I wasn’t trying to make him upset, I was trying to make him aware. Ultimately you have to that have relationship of trust. If he understands and knows what I’m looking at, he has the ability to respond the proper way in the car. When we get out, there’s no hard feelings. We just go on our way and have fun again the next week trying to overcome either a bad race or a race win.
He talked about Darlington. We were up in the lounge. We were trying to figure it out. Right after a race, if you have a bad one, sometimes you don’t want to talk, but we were able to. I told him, Hey, pump the guys up. Get involved and pump them up. He did. I was in a situation where I was upset and frustrated with the car’s performance. You needed him to do what he needed to do. He did a good job overcoming the last few weeks. Ultimately that’s because we have a relationship not only with him and I but throughout the full race team. Q. Greg, I know the dynamic of the team has been a little bit different with Rowdy’s passing. What has Alan brought to the team from your standpoint? How has he changed or uplifted the dynamic?GREG IVES: When you’re going through that, one of the biggest things you have to do is find a connection not only with the team but you have to find that connection with the person that Rowdy was. Alan and Rowdy had a friendship and a relationship prior. He was somebody that understood Rowdy and his attitude towards everyday working. He understood Rowdy’s personality from a team aspect, how valuable he was to us, keeping us motivated every day and every week. That’s where I found comfort with the guys around us. The pit crew had a big say in how they replaced one of their fallen guys. How was he going to mesh with the team? I would take meshing with the team over talent. Alan and Rowdy came in close together, they stayed friends. They had a similar work ethic. Ultimately it felt like the right choice for him to step into a position that was very difficult to endure and go through. He helped us find a little bit of peace in it all.Yeah, very difficult, but ultimately that’s kind of how it all worked out. THE MODERATOR: Greg, we’ll let you continue on with your obligations. Thanks for joining us and congratulations on the win. GREG IVES: Thank you, guys. Appreciate everybody. Q. You mentioned your crew guys were able to hop up on the wall. With everything opening up this weekend, were you able to celebrate with them a little bit more than the Richmond victory?ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, for sure. They were all in Victory Lane which is really cool. Means the world when I get to share that with them when I think so much of it was influenced by them. Really, really cool. Appreciative of getting to do that with them. Really neat. Q. What has Allen brought to the team? The stop was brilliant at the end. I think the fastest of anybody this season to get you out front.ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, for sure, I think Rowdy had a really big outgoing personality in a sea of awkwardness that is the 48 team. I think Allen brings a really similar personality, outgoingness. He’s just a big personality, a lot of fun to be around, a lot of fun to talk to. Can talk to anybody. Always having a good time. Always upbeat and positive. Rowdy was that guy. You have a lot of really awkward people on the 48 team, between Greg and I, some of the other pit crew guys, some of the team itself. We’re kind of a bunch of weirdos. It gets the job done. I feel like Alan brings it all together a little bit. Q. All four teams are running at a really high level right now. Can you circle anything specific that maybe has changed or improved that has got all four of you hitting on eight cylinders at the right time? Is it communication?ALEX BOWMAN: I don’t think there’s one thing you can pinpoint. I think it’s everybody in the whole shop working super well together, all four race teams working well together. Marshall Carlson is doing a really good job kind of getting everybody together. Chad Knaus is doing a really good job of taking lead in the shop. From the top down, Jeff Andrews has a big part in everything, the four crew chiefs, all the way to guys that sweep the floor at night. It’s a team effort. Everybody is all in. It’s a good atmosphere right now. All the cars are fast. The 48 team, we’ve had our struggles, our races that have gotten away from us. Everybody has been really fast. That’s just brought a great atmosphere and continuing to go well. Q. Looking forward to the Coke 600. With that extra hundred miles, your fast pit crew, the speed that the Hendrick cars have, you’re going to be one of the favorites going into that race. How do you feel being in that tier of drivers?ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, I mean, I think we probably could have won both races there last year. We won a bunch of stages. The green-white-checkered didn’t really go our way the first one. I crashed all by myself when we should have won the second one. Probably my favorite oval we go to as far as the mile-and-a-half stuff. It’s got a lot of character. Some guys don’t like it, but I think it’s because they haven’t figured it out. Once you figure out turns three and four, it’s a lot of fun. You can manipulate your race car to do what you want it to do. I enjoy it. A lot of different grooves. It gets slick. A long, grueling, fun race. Looking forward to 600 miles, being as prepared as I can be for it. Q. Is there anything to that extra hundred miles for a driver?ALEX BOWMAN: I think this race feels longer than that race does. Next week will probably be more physically challenging than the 600 is. Charlotte is not a place that really beats you up too bad. This place is really hard on you. A road course in Texas in the middle of May is going to be pretty rough as well.
I think all these races kind of strung together that are difficult physical days for us probably prepare us a little bit extra for the next weeks. Q. I know the short tracks haven’t been your best friend. Now you have two this year. Throughout 2021 what have you learned about Greg and this team that might be new to you?ALEX BOWMAN: I don’t really think there’s been a new thing for us. I think we definitely improved our short track program a ton. Richmond was a place we struggled at tremendously. Dover was one of our best racetracks, has been for a long time. I don’t know if we’re really learning new things. We’re definitely gelling really well. Probably doing a little better job of overcoming the rough weeks in between Richmond and here than I would have previously. Just trying to be a little better leader, be a little more upbeat. Bristol, Martinsville, Kansas, Darlington, 2019, 2020, I probably would have been pretty mad all week, miserable to be around, angry about it. Just trying to stay really positive and be a good leader for those guys, do what I can to keep them pumped up. We go to a lot of good places for us. Our weaknesses are shrinking, we’re getting better at the places we struggle at. I feel like we can go about anywhere and win right now. Q. A couple of your teammates had issues with their brakes. Was it an issue of too much tape, track temp or anything like that?ALEX BOWMAN: I haven’t really talked to my teammates to know what they were fighting with. We had massive brake issues. Pretty much had no brakes. Spent a lot of 400 laps pumping the brake pedals up, hoping they were going to work in the next quarter. They worked when it counted. We’ll have to address what was wrong there, what we missed. Never had brake issues before here. Obviously, we had really fast race cars to be able to overcome it. Definitely struggled with that a little more than we would have expected. Q. You’re going to the Circuit of the Americas next week. How tough is it going to be to get a setup for that place, the limited amount of practice time?ALEX BOWMAN: I don’t even know how much practice we do or don’t have. It’s the same for everybody. We just got to go there and try to hit it off the bat. Chase has been there. That’s a big help. It will be crucial to learn from him. It’s crucial to learn from him any time we go to a road course, he’s so good at them.
Just trying to improve. I feel like our weak point is going to be me as a race car driver. I feel if I do my job, do a good job for the team, we’ll have a good, solid day. Q. This time last year the No. 48 was one of the most talked about rides in terms of who was going to fill that seat. How does it feel to vindicate the faith that Mr. H had in you?ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, it’s really cool. To come to a place like Dover, the 48 has had so much success, get a win here, never won here with Mr. Hendrick here, so it’s so cool to be able to do that. Just really neat.
I feel like throughout my career I’ve had my fair share of doubters. To be able to get two wins here to start off the season, be having a good start to the year, is really cool. Q. Mr. H said he took you aside before the season started and said, you can’t be Jimmie Johnson light, we want you to be Alex Bowman. In your words who is Alex Bowman?ALEX BOWMAN: Race car driver/weirdo, awkward human (laughter). I don’t know. I feel like I’m just a regular guy. I obviously really enjoy what I get to do. Put a lot of time and hard work into trying to be the best race car driver I can be. I don’t have any, like, extravagant hobby. I don’t have, like, this super big personality. I’m not a villain like you see some of the other guys. I guess I don’t have that. I just kind of am myself. I like to spend time at home with my dogs. I have a small group of friends. Spend a ton of time at my shop working on the Sprint car stuff. Every day that I’m not at Hendrick Motorsports, I’m in the simulator, at the shop, laying underneath a race car working on it. Yeah, that’s about all there is to it for my life. Q. COTA and the Coke 600, NASCAR will hold practice and qualifying sessions those weekends. Have you missed the extra time at the racetrack? Are you and the drivers ready for the potential to add more sessions onto the schedule now that restrictions are getting lifted?ALEX BOWMAN: I really enjoy the lack of practice. I feel like growing up, you’d show up, get one hot lap session, qualify, heat race, race. Your whole day was like 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and you were done.I enjoy kind of the compact schedule. Mostly looking forward to be able to work with my race team and maximize our race car for Sunday’s race, something we haven’t done in quite a while. It’s going to be cool to be able to do it. I’m not going to lie, I definitely like the schedule we have now for sure. THE MODERATOR: Alex, thanks for joining us this evening. Congratulations on the win. We will see you next week for that practice and qualifying. ALEX BOWMAN: Yeah, thank you.

DiBenedetto Finishes 24th at Dover



May 16, 2021

For Matt DiBenedetto and Motorcraft/Quick Lane team, Dover International Speedway lived up to its Monster Mile nickname in Sunday’s Drydene 400.

DiBenedetto’s No. 21 Mustang had handling issues from start to finish, leaving him with a 24th-place finish, five laps behind the leaders.

DiBenedetto lined up 18th for the start of the 400-lap grind on the one-mile concrete oval. He was able to move up in the initial laps, gaining three spots in the first five laps. He was running 20th when the Competition Caution flag flew after 36 laps. But from that point on, he ran mostly outside the top 20 for the remainder of the race.

DiBenedetto said his team tried some different things set-up wise after failing to meet their expectations at Dover last year.
 
“We tried to throw some things at our Motorcraft/Quick Lane Mustang going into this weekend, and unfortunately it didn’t work out,” DiBenedetto said, adding that he pushed the ill-handling car as hard as he could without taking undue risks. “We just had to be smart.”
 
Eddie Wood said he and the entire team are disappointed but will move on.
 
“We had string of good finishes going, but we’ve stumbled the past two weeks,” he said. “We are a better team than this, and we’ll turn it around.”
 
Despite the recent struggles, DiBenedetto remains 17th in the Cup Series standings, nine points behind 16th place Michael McDowell.
 
Next up for DiBenedetto and the Wood Brothers team is the first-ever NASCAR race on Circuit of the Americas, a road course in Austin, Texas. The weekend opens for the Cup Series with practice next Saturday morning. Qualifying is set for Sunday morning, followed by the 68-lap EchoPark Texas Grand Prix on Sunday afternoon.
 
May 16, 2021
For Matt DiBenedetto and Motorcraft/Quick Lane team, Dover International Speedway lived up to its Monster Mile nickname in Sunday’s Drydene 400.

DiBenedetto’s No. 21 Mustang had handling issues from start to finish, leaving him with a 24th-place finish, five laps behind the leaders.

DiBenedetto lined up 18th for the start of the 400-lap grind on the one-mile concrete oval. He was able to move up in the initial laps, gaining three spots in the first five laps. He was running 20th when the Competition Caution flag flew after 36 laps. But from that point on, he ran mostly outside the top 20 for the remainder of the race.

DiBenedetto said his team tried some different things set-up wise after failing to meet their expectations at Dover last year.
 
“We tried to throw some things at our Motorcraft/Quick Lane Mustang going into this weekend, and unfortunately it didn’t work out,” DiBenedetto said, adding that he pushed the ill-handling car as hard as he could without taking undue risks. “We just had to be smart.”
 
Eddie Wood said he and the entire team are disappointed but will move on.
 
“We had string of good finishes going, but we’ve stumbled the past two weeks,” he said. “We are a better team than this, and we’ll turn it around.”
 
Despite the recent struggles, DiBenedetto remains 17th in the Cup Series standings, nine points behind 16th place Michael McDowell.
 
Next up for DiBenedetto and the Wood Brothers team is the first-ever NASCAR race on Circuit of the Americas, a road course in Austin, Texas. The weekend opens for the Cup Series with practice next Saturday morning. Qualifying is set for Sunday morning, followed by the 68-lap EchoPark Texas Grand Prix on Sunday afternoon.
 

KING OF THE WEST SPRINT CARS HEADED TO PETALUMA ON SATURDAY

May 16, 2021 Jim Allen

(5/17/21), Sacramento, CA … As the month of May nears its end, the NARC King of the West Fujitsu Sprint Cars take on Petaluma Speedway this Saturday, May 22nd for the Salute to First Responders, the third round of a 20-race schedule.  The event salutes our brave first responders and their selfless efforts to help ensure our safety. All first responders are encouraged to attend as they will be admitted for the discounted price of $10 with a valid ID at the front gate.

The state’s premier 410 winged sprint car series will be joined by modifieds, dwarf cars and mini stocks for an action-packed night of racing. Located on the Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds, the tight and tacky Petaluma Speedway guarantees fast, wheel-to-wheel action, especially when NARC’s roaring 900-horsepower sprint cars take the green flag on the clay oval.  Saturday marks the first of three scheduled series appearances in Petaluma, the others being July 10th and August 29th.

After his clean sweep of the Peter Murphy Classic weekend that included an $11,000 Fujitsu Feature win at Tulare, Dominic Scelzi is now atop the point standings. The victory marked his tenth career series triumph and first at the Thunderbowl.  Having proven he can run up front at any kind of racetrack over his career, he’ll be in the hunt for the checkered flag this Saturday with hopes to extend his point lead in search of his first title.

Who might be some other drivers to watch this weekend?

Expect Campbell native Bud Kaeding to be in contention. Over his last eight series starts in Petaluma, the 2017 NARC champion has an average finish of 2.9. The stretch includes two victories and top-5s in all but one event, a sixth place run in June of 2019 being the outlier.

Current runner-up in points, Shane Golobic, has two wins in his last three series appearances at the 3/8ths mile. The driver out of Fremont won in August of 2016 and July of 2018 and will be hoping to make it three wins out of four starts this weekend. Golobic also scored an impressive SCCT win on the clay last month.

It’s also worth noting that Chase Johnson won in the series most recent appearance at Petaluma in July of 2019. The versatile driver also scored victories with the SCCT and USAC/CRA in 2019 at the same facility. However, after engine troubles at Tulare plagued his Johnson Racing team, his status for Saturday is up in the air.

Expect many other competitors to be in attendance Saturday. Justin Sanders captured his first ever Petaluma victory last year driving the Larry Antaya Motorsports No. 16A that he’ll be piloting this weekend. San Jose’s Tim Kaeding, Willie Croft of Colfax, Sean Becker of Roseville, Hanford’s D.J. Netto and more will be occupying the pits this weekend.

The NARC King of the West Hoosier Tire format will feature ARP Fast Time Qualifying, 10-lap heat races, a six-lap Sunnyvalley Bacon trophy dash, and the Fujitsu General 30-lap feature.

The pits will open at 12:00 P.M. with the front gates opening at 4:00 P.M. Hot laps are set to begin at 5:00 P.M. with racing at 6:00 P.M.  Adult GA tickets are $27 while seniors will be admitted for $24. The price tag for kids ages 6-11 is $20, and kids 5 and under are free! And again, first responders will be admitted for only $10 by showing a valid ID at the front gate.

Tickets are available on myracepass.com, and fans are encouraged to purchase theirs now as there will be a 40% capacity limit on the crowd due to local COVID-19 regulations. Get yours while you can! The online tickets do not include the first responders discount option as those must be purchased on race day at the front gate.

The Salute to First Responders can also be viewed live on FloRacing.com along with the rest of the NARC King of the West Fujitsu Sprint Cars schedule.

Petaluma Speedway is located on the Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds at 100 Fairgrounds Dr. Petaluma, CA 94952. For more information call (707) 763-7223.

Race fans and teams are highly encouraged to practice safe COVID-19 protocol.

The King of the West-NARC Fujitsu General Racing Series is also sponsored by Hoosier Racing Tires.  Associate and product award sponsors include ATL Racing Cells, Automotive Racing Products (ARP), Autometer, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Bullet Impressions, FK Rod Ends, FloRacing.com, Hooker Harness, Johnstone Supply, Kaeding Performance Center, KSE Racing Products, Maxim, PAC Racing Springs, Pyrotect, Racing Optics, Saldana Racing Products, Schoenfeld Headers, SCI Racing Products, Swift Metal Finishing, Sunnyvalley Bacon, System 1 Ignition, Ultra Light Brakes, Wilwood Disc Brakes, and Winters Performance Products.

SOCIAL MEDIA INFORMATION
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Live Stream PPV:  Floracing.com

NARC King of the West Fujitsu 410 Sprint Car Series
Championship Points Standings (After one event in 20-race series – 5/16/21)

  1.  Dominic Scelzi, Fresno – 231
  2. Shane Golobic, Elk Grove – 226
  3. DJ Netto, Hanford – 224
  4. Bud Kaeding, Campbell – 221
  5. Tim Kaeding, San Jose – 218
  6. Willie Croft, Colfax – 21
  7. Sean Becker, Roseville – 215
  8. Mitchell Faccinto, Hanford – 215
  9. Justin Sanders, Aromas – 213
  10. Billy Aton, Benicia – 209
  11. Kyle Hirst, Paradise – 206
  12. Austin McCarl, Altoona, IA – 205
  13. Sean Watts, Clovis – 199
  14. Mitchel Moles, Raisin City – 197
  15. Kyle Offill, Tracy – 191
  16. Kenny Allen, Chico – 191
  17. Rico Abreu, Rutherford – 40
  18. Geoff Ensign, Sebastopol – 32
  19. Robbie Price – 104
  20. Blake Carrick – 104

Upcoming Events:
June 11 – Ocean Speedway (Watsonville) – 33rd Annual Pombo-Sargent Classic
June 12 – Placerville Speedway – 30th Annual Dave Bradway Jr. Memorial with SCCT

Fresno’s Dominic Scelzi is the current NARC King of the West 410 Sprint Car championship point leader. Photo by Joe Shivak

DOMINIC SCELZI SWEEPS THE PETER MURPHY CLASSIC

May 16, 2021 Jim Allen

(5/15/21) Joe Shivak & Jim Allen, Tulare, CA …  A Peter Murphy Classic win has been on Dominic Scelzi’s bucket list for a long time.  According to Scelzi it was Murphy who kept him interested in continuing his racing career after suffering a broken back in a sprint car accident.  And in a fitting conclusion to a successful race night, Murphy was the first person to greet Scelzi on the front stretch of the Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway on Saturday night after his win in the 30-lap NARC King of the West Fujitsu Sprint Car feature.

Scelzi’s red and white No. 41 Wimple Superchargers/Scelzi Enterprises sponsored car picked up the $11,000 top prize in the Seventh Annual race becoming the seventh different winner.  Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic there was no race held in 2020.

Polesitter Scelzi and Bud Kaeding brought the 24-car field to the green flag and immediately the two veteran drivers waged a back and forth battle which saw the lead change at each end of the track until Geoffrey Strole brought out the caution when he stopped on the apron of the first turn.  During this caution, Rookie of the Year contender Kyle Offill pitted and returned to the track after a visit to the work area.

Once restarted, the two top guns traded slide jobs once again as their battle resumed.  The race tightened up even more when the red flag appeared for an upside-down Austin McCarl in the second corner on lap19.  He was unhurt.  When racing resumed Kaeding and Scelzi’s battle was even more frantic with the freight train of Shane Golobic, Kyle Hirst and 11th starter Willie Croft in hard pursuit.  Scelzi’s slide job final stuck for good on the 24th circuit and he threaded his way through traffic the rest of the way to score the emotional victory.

“I got hurt here and I was looking to redeem myself,” said Scelzi.  “Peter (Murphy) provided the inspiration and my team gave me the car to do the rest.  It been a great weekend and I’m glad I could do this in front of full grandstands.  Thank you!”

Golobic, aboard the Elk Grove Ford entry, and Croft got past Kaeding in the waning laps to fill out the podium.  Croft earned the Swift Metal Finishing hardcharger award for his efforts in his Amerikote-sponsored ride.  Kaeding was fourth and Hirst rounded out the top five.

The balance of the top ten included Tim Kaeding, Sean Becker, Justin Sanders, DJ Netto and Billy Aton.

Scelzi’s was the only driver in the 24-car field to qualify in the 13-second bracket to earn fast time.  That earned him $1100 from Kimo’s Tropical Car Wash, Norm Martin, and ARP for his work.  Overall for the weekend, he won the Sprint Car Challenge Tour 360 race and Kings of Thunder 410 features on Friday at Hanford, and the Kings of Thunder 360 and NARC King of the West races on Saturday.

FUJITSU FEATURE EVENT (30-laps):  41-Dominic Scelzi, 17W – Shane Golobic, 29 – Willie Croft, 69 – Bud Kaeding, 0 – Kyle Hirst, 42X – Tim Kaeding, 83V – Sean Becker, 16A – Justin Sanders, 88N – DJ Netto, 26 – Billy Aton, 27 – Mitchell Faccinto, 21P – Robbie Price, 93 – Kalib Henry, 83 – Kasey Kahne, 14 – Corey Day, 18T – Tanner Holmes, 2 – JJ Ringo, 98 – Sean Watts, 01 – Mitchel Moles, 36 – Craig Stidham, 88 – Kyle Offill, 21 – Austin McCarl, 76 – Kenny Allen, 09S – Geoffrey Strole.

HOOSIER TIRE LAP LEADERS:   Kaeding 1-23, Scelzi 24-30.

SWIFT METAL FINISHING HARDCHARGER:   Willie Croft 11th to 3rd.

KIMO’S TROPICAL CAR WASH/ARP FAST QUALIFIER :    Dominic Scelzi – 13.963 seconds

BROWN & MILLER RACING SOLUTIONS FIRST HEAT (8 laps):    Scelzi, McCarl, Netto, T. Kaeding, Stidham, Price, Henry.

FUJITSU GENERAL USA SECOND HEAT (8 laps):   B. Kaeding, Golobic, Watts, Sanders, Aton, Moles, Offill, Day.

FLORACING.COM THIRD HEAT (8 laps):   Becker, Kahne, Hirst, Faccinto, Allen, Croft, Ringo, Strole.

SUNNYVALLEY BACON/NORM MARTIN “AUSSIE POLE SHUFFLE;”  Becker beat Kahne; Becker beat Hirst; B. Kaeding beat Becker; B. Kaeding beat Golobic, Scelzi beat B. Kaeding.

Dominic Scelzi had the hammerdown all weekend. Photo by Joe Shivak
Shane Golobic and Dominic Scelzi get ready to do battle at the Thunderbowl. Photo by Joe Shivak

chevy racing–nascar–dover post race

NASCAR CUP SERIES DOVER INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY DRYDENE 400 TEAM CHEVY FULL PACKAGE POST-RACE NOTES & QUOTES MAY 16, 2021
TOP TEAM CHEVY UNOFFICIAL RACE RESULTS:POS.   DRIVER1st      ALEX BOWMAN, NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE2nd    KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 NATIONS GUARD CAMARO ZL1 1LE3rd     CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS CAMARO ZL1 1LE4th      WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 AXALTA CAMARO ZL1 1LE8th      TYLER REDDICK, NO. 8 CAT LINKAGE PINS CAMARO ZL1 1LE9th      DANIEL SUAREZ, NO. 99 COMMSCOPE CAMARO ZL1 1LE
TOP FIVE UNOFFICIAL RACE RESULTS:POS.  DRIVER1st      Alex Bowman (Chevrolet)2nd    Kyle Larson (Chevrolet)3rd     Chase Elliott (Chevrolet)4th      William Byron (Chevrolet)5th      Joey Logano (Ford)
The NASCAR Cup Series season continues next weekend at Circuit of the Americas for the EchoPark Texas Grand Prix on Sunday, May 23, at 2:30 p.m. ET. Live coverage can be found on FS1, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90. TEAM CHEVY POST-RACE NOTES AND QUOTES:ALEX BOWMAN, NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE – RACE WINNERALEX BOWMAN WINS AT DOVER AND HE GETS HIS CREW CHIEF’S (GREG IVE) FIRST OFFICIAL VICTORY AS A CREW CHIEF AT THIS RACETRACK. ALEX, YOU JUST SAID IT’S ALL ABOUT THE PIT CREW. WHAT CAN YOU SAY ABOUT THE CHEMISTRY OF THIS TEAM RIGHT NOW AND WHAT YOU’RE ABLE TO DO?“We won Richmond (Raceway) and then had a really rough couple of weeks there. We went to some really good racetracks for us and struggled. I told the guys last week, ‘we’re still the same team that did it at Richmond’. This is another really good place for us. I’m just so pumped for Ally. It feels right to put the 48 back in victory lane here after how many races that this car has won here.”
“Mr. H (Rick Hendrick) is here. I don’t think I’ve won with him here before, so that’s really cool. Just so proud of this pit crew. It was obviously a rough off season for us and a big void to fill. Not that we’re ever going to fill the void that Rowdy left, but Allen is doing a really good job and the whole pit crew is doing a really good job. Thanks to my spotter, Kevin Hamlin, for couching me there at the end. It was fun racing Kyle (Larson) and glad to get Hendrick Motorsports another win.”
KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 NATIONSGUARD CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 2ndIT LOOKED LIKE YOU WERE GOING TO BE ABLE TO GET BACK TO BATTLE FOR THE LEAD. WHAT DID YOU LACK THERE AT THE END?“Yeah, I just felt like all of us HMS guys were pretty equal, so I felt like whoever got out to the lead was going to be hard to beat. Their team (No. 48 Chevy) just did a really good job on that pit stop and gained control of the race. I never really had a shot after that. That one restart, I got to his bumper and got him loose, but the 4 (Kevin Harvick) was coming so we just had to let each other go. Hard to be disappointed with a second, because like I said, I felt like I did everything I could. We led a lot of laps and won both Stages there, so it was good points, but we would have liked to be one spot better.” “But all in all, a good day for our NationsGuard Chevy and what a day for Hendrick Motorsports and Chevrolet. Thanks to everyone back at the shop, the engine shop. It’s pretty amazing because I don’t know the last time Mr. H (Rick Hendrick) had all four of his cars in the top-four, but that is a pretty special day, for sure.” CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 3rd“I really felt like we were pretty close, balance-wise. It was just kind of a matter of how your restart went and where you fell in line, unfortunately for us. But I’m happy for Hendrick Motorsports. I don’t know when the last time that finish has happened. It’s probably been a while for any team.”
WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 AXALTA CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 4thFINISHING 1-2-3-4 FOR HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS WAS A DOMINATE DAY FOR THE ORGANIZATION.“Yeah, that was awesome. For us to finish 1-2-3-4 is just a credit to a lot of great people at the shop, Chevrolet, Axalta, and all the people that support us to get us the resources; and then our teams, the crew chiefs, drivers and pit crews executing really good races. For us, it’s been going for a while. We’ve just got to get a little bit. It sucks to be fourth, but I think we’re close. We just have to work on some things on our car, get the right feels, but we’re getting really close. So, we keep chipping away. We’ve had two fourth-place finishes in a row. We’ll take it and move on.”
RICK HENDRICK, OWNER, HENDRICK MOTORSPORTSTO GET A FIRST, SECOND, THIRD, AND FOURTH PLACE FINISH TODAY, WHAT DOES THAT MEAN TO YOU IN THE LIST OF ACCOMPLISHMENTS?“I can guarantee you this has been the most nervous I’ve been in a race. It was a great day for the organization. Alex (Bowman), congratulations to him. This is a sign of the guys working together and bringing good stuff to the track. I don’t think it’ll hit me maybe until tomorrow that we were able to finish 1-2-3-4. That’s pretty hard to do. Things can happen; pit stops, tires, anything. But that’s a first and we’ll take it. It was a great day for us.”
TYLER REDDICK, NO. 8 CAT LINKAGE PINS CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 8th“I’m very proud of my No. 8 Cat Linkage Pins Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE team today. We really had to fight hard today for our eighth-place finish at Dover, especially after the speeding penalty on pit road after our first stop of the day. Entry seemed to be the biggest issue for us during the first half of the race. I just needed better rotation to get through that portion of both ends of the track quicker. My crew chief, Randall Burnett, and the team did a good job of keeping after the track with our adjustments today and giving me feedback based on our SMT data. We really hit on something towards the end of Stage 2, which allowed me to get up in the top 10 for the start of Stage 3. Track position was key today, even more so than fresh tires for us, so once we got up in the top 10, we did everything we could to say there, even though that meant staying out and making it a much longer final run for us on tires when those mid-stage cautions came out in Stage 3. It was a battle to hang on during that last run, but it paid off for us today with our fifth top-10 finish in the last seven races.” DANIEL SUAREZ, NO. 99 COMMSCOPE CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 9thBEFORE THIS RACE, YOU SAID YOU’D BE HAPPY WITH A TOP 10. YOU CALLED IT. HOW GOOD WAS THIS RACE FOR YOU?“We have to work hard. The No. 99 CommScope Chevy Camaro was strong. Most of the race, I felt like the entire race, we were probably a top-15 car. But, with good adjustments, we gained some track position and that gave us the opportunity to finish in the top-10. There is still a lot of work to do, definitely. Right there at the end, I was tight. I was against the No. 11 (Denny Hamlin), the No. 41 (Cole Custer) and all these guys, but we were able to hold them off and get a decent finish. But we have to keep working and win a trophy.”
KURT BUSCH, NO. 1 YORKTEL/CAREGILITY CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 13th “Such a tough way to end an otherwise strong run for our team. We were able to pass a lot of cars and race from near the back to the top-10 by the beginning of Stage 2. The guys did a nice job on pit road today, we just had an issue with a malfunction on the jack for the final stop. That put us back at the tail-end of the lead lap cars. I hate if for the Yorktel and Caregility folks that were here to watch us race today. There is no quit in this team, so we will move-on and keep digging”.
AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 HUK PERFORMANCE FISHING CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 14th“We had a decent Huk Fishing Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE today at Dover International Speedway. Overall, the balance of our RCR Chevy was pretty good to start the race. We found a line at the bottom of the track that worked well but I was worried about tire wear, so I didn’t move down there until closer to the end of the stage. We were pretty good in Stage 2 but handling was just sort of blah during the middle of the run when cloud cover cooled off the track and caused the Huk Chevy to become freer. It came back to us to end the Stage and we were able to secure a few stage points. At the end of the race, the cloud cover returned and that effected our handling. We just couldn’t keep up with the track. We’ll regroup as a team and head to the Circuit of the Americas next week.” ROSS CHASTAIN, NO. 42 MOOSE FRATERNITY CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 15th“15th – What I would have given a few weeks ago to finish 15th. But today, we showed a lot more promise on this No. 42 Moose Fraternity Chevrolet. We had more speed than that, we just got really tight. The last set of tires, we made no adjustments. We were the best we were all day on our second-to-last run. On that set of tires, we ran a few laps. A caution came out, we did the opposite of the leaders. Didn’t do anything to the car, fired back off tight; very tight. I’m kind of baffled why that was. So, I just kind of had to hold on and not get into anyone’s way too much, and ran 15th there at the end. Man, it did feel good to run up towards tenth. We’ll keep building.” ERIK JONES, NO. 43 MEDALLION BANK CAMARO ZL1 1LE – Finished 22nd“Just struggled all day with the Medallion Bank Chevy. Never could get the feel we were looking for. We fought all day to try and bring home a decent finish. Hopefully have some notes to make some changes when we come back again in the fall.” KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 NATIONSGUARD CAMARO ZL1 1LE, AND CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS CAMARO ZL1 1LE, Press Conference Transcript: THE MODERATOR: We are now joined by our third-place finisher, Chase Elliott, driver of the No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet. We’ll go straight to questions for Chase. Q. What does it mean to be part of a day when Hendrick goes 1-2-3-4?CHASE ELLIOTT: Really cool. Glad Mr. Hendrick was here. He has been at just a few races this year. He picked a good one today. Yeah, just proud of our whole team. Everybody, HMS, I feel like we have a really talented group of people that work really hard. It’s just nice to see their hard work awarded like that, in that manner, in that type of domination. Those guys led, I guess Kyle and Alex, pretty much led the whole race. Really cool. Just really proud of everybody. Glad to be a part of the team. Q. Halfway through the regular season, what do you think of your team’s performance at this point? How do you grade things out?CHASE ELLIOTT: Yeah, I mean, I think we’re in a good place as far as where we ended the day today. I thought we were close. Just needed to do just a tick better. Needed to have a little better restarts, have just a tick more pace. I really thought we were pretty close. So happy with our run. Q. Any races in the first half of the year that you’d like to have back that you thought maybe you could have won?CHASE ELLIOTT: No. That’s why we race. Q. Obviously to do as an organization what you did today, it’s not easy. 2005 the only other time it’s been done. Is there a way to characterize how difficult it is for one team to put a thrashing on the rest of the field?CHASE ELLIOTT: Yeah, I mean, obviously, because of the significance of it, I guess you said it’s only been done one other time? Q. Three times, once in the modern era, Roush in ’05.CHASE ELLIOTT: There you go. It’s obviously really hard. It’s one thing to have four fast cars. I think that happens fairly often. But have four fast cars with four really well-executed races. Yeah, it’s a cool thing. It’s very hard to do. Q. Is that a case of teamwork? Have you been working closer together compared to previous years or everybody hitting on all cylinders at the right time?CHASE ELLIOTT: I feel like our communication is good. I feel like it’s been good in the past, too. I wish I could say that or give you a really good reason as to why. I just think everybody in our company’s really motivated right now, working hard to provide fast cars. I feel like everybody is pulling the rope in the same direction. As good or better than it’s ever been since I’ve been there. I think that’s key. But I think as far as our communication, how closely we work, I don’t really know that’s much different. THE MODERATOR: We are also joined by our second-place finisher, Kyle Larson, driver of the No. 5 Nations Guard Chevrolet. If you have a question for either Kyle or Chase… Q. Chase, did you have any of the brake issues that the 24 and the 48 experienced through the course of the race?CHASE ELLIOTT: Fortunately no, I did not. Q. Chase, how does a race like this build into next week going into the Circuit of the Americas road course where you’ve been pretty strong at those types of tracks the last couple years?CHASE ELLIOTT: Yeah, honestly it really doesn’t. They’re all kind of new opportunities, in my opinion, new weeks. Obviously a much different track than what we raced on today. I don’t feel like there’s really any comparison at all. Q. Chase, the Coke 600, Hendrick should be pretty fast again. You’ve come about as close as possible to winning it. Can you describe how tough it is to win a race like the Coke 600?CHASE ELLIOTT: They’re all tough to win. I haven’t found an easy one to win personally. I think they’re all pretty difficult. I don’t think the Coke 600 is any different. Q. Is that last hundred miles any more significant than in the past where it was about attrition? What does that do for a driver?CHASE ELLIOTT: As much as you want me to say yes, the answer is no. I mean, it’s just not any different really. Just happens to be another hundred miles. Q. Still a crown jewel for you?CHASE ELLIOTT: Yeah, absolutely. THE MODERATOR: Chase, thanks for joining us. We’ll let you move on. We’ll continue on with questions for Kyle Larson. Q. Kyle, do you feel like you’re still learning some about the Hendrick cars as far as restarts and other things? Do you feel like you’re totally comfortable with the cars?KYLE LARSON: No, I mean, it all seemed pretty normal to me today. I don’t know, do you think I could have did anything different on the restart? Q. No, I don’t know. I’m trying to figure out if you feel like you I don’t want to say gave it away, but do you feel there’s still learning for you to do with these specific cars that potentially could help you be stronger down the road? KYLE LARSON: Well, I mean, I think you learn. Every time you hit the racetrack, you learn something. I’m sure I learned something today. We’ll be better again in the future. Q. This is the 267th win for Hendrick Motorsports. Not an opportunity every day you get to eclipse the King for a record. How meaningful is it to you to have contributed to that? Does having that record in front of you, do you feel like it will add even more motivation for you, or business as usual?KYLE LARSON: I mean, I think it’s definitely business as usual. We all know that milestone is out in front of us. We know that it’s really important to Mr. H. He mentions it almost every time I feel like I talk to him. I hope we can get there quickly. I hope I’m the driver to do it and break that record whenever we get to it.But, yeah, it’s definitely a cool, cool milestone that I think is obviously important to him. To have a day like we all had today with all four of us in the top four, that’s never been done at HMS. This year has been great so far for our organization and we look forward to adding to it. Q. Compared to Kansas, your post race comments sounded like it was more magnanimous of being second. Was it a fact of having all four Hendrick cars, whoever had clean air simply with the edge today?KYLE LARSON: Yeah, I mean, I honestly don’t know if there was anything I could have done differently to win the race after we came out second on pit road. I would choose the top behind him, get to second every time. Maybe I could have chose the bottom on restart, but I still don’t think I would have stayed with him till he was inside or anything like that. Probably would have fell back to third or so. I feel like we maximized our day. We were all so equal. I think any of the four of us could have been out in the lead. That person probably would have won. Just, yeah, we were all equal. Their pit crew did an awesome job. Our pit crew has been amazing all year, too. Like I said, I’m not disappointed or upset about this second because I feel like there wasn’t anything else I could do. Q. Last year you were here obviously, there were no fans in the stands. This year it seemed like a decent crowd. What is it like to be racing now more regularly in front of fans?KYLE LARSON: I didn’t get to experience it all last year, but I can imagine it was probably eerie not having any fans at these races.But today it felt close to normal. Was definitely happy to hear the crowd yelling and screaming before the race, and afterwards, too. Things are starting to feel like they’re getting back to normal. I think we all love not having to wear masks throughout the garage area and outside any more. Yeah, it’s getting normal again. We’re getting fans back, which is great. Q. For drivers, a crown jewel race for a driver like yourself, Daytona, the Coke 600. Do you think about those things in your career and on your trophy mantel, if you will?KYLE LARSON: Yeah, for sure. I mean, I haven’t thought about that race yet because we still have COTA, I don’t know, maybe something else after that. Yeah, I mean, we all want to win the big ones. I’ve been fortunate to win the All-Star Race, which is a crown jewel. But for sure you want to win all of them. You want to win honestly every race. Yeah, I mean, it’s definitely one that’s up there that means a lot. I think the purse is really big, too. I think that adds some ambition for everybody to want to go out there and win. Q. Can you describe how that race turns out with the day/night thing, the extra hundred miles?KYLE LARSON: Yeah, I’m curious and excited to get there in Hendrick equipment. Ganassi I would always run really well at the All-Star Race, then I would run pretty good the first third of the 600 or so, then I would always seem to lose the balance once it went to nighttime. Yeah, I guess we’ll see what the difference is this year. Maybe it will be a lot different, too, because the All-Star Race, all the extra laps on the track. Maybe it will suit me a little bit better. Q. Had it been anyone other than Bowman on the restart that had the lead, would you have been more aggressive? Clearly you don’t want to take your teammate out on a restart.KYLE LARSON: No, I mean, I was really aggressive that one where I got to his bumper, pushed him through the middle of one and two, then again in the middle of three and four. At that point I didn’t really care it was a teammate in front of me or not. I wasn’t going to push him any harder than I was there because I already had him pretty sideways. Same would have went for anybody else. I’m not going to try and wreck anybody. The 4 car was coming really fast up top, so I didn’t want to give him an advantage, smoke by all of us. You never know with him out front, it could be really, really fast. We didn’t want that to happen. Q. Do you take any solace in winning stages, leading the most laps?KYLE LARSON: Yeah, I mean, it all looks good for stats and stuff, laps led. Winning the two stages, getting those couple points for the Playoffs is obviously really important. Obviously we would have wanted five more with the win, but we’ll take what we can get and keep stacking ’em up as often as we can, just try and position ourselves to be in a good spot come Playoff time. Yeah, if you can’t win the race, you definitely want to have a good points day. Q. You mentioned it’s not what you wanted, but a big day for the organization as a whole. Chase said he hasn’t felt like communication has been too much different. You haven’t been at Hendrick Motorsports as long as the other guys. What have you noticed as far as all four cars running as well as they have? Is there anything specific you can attribute to how strong the team has been?KYLE LARSON: Yeah, I’m not sure. They’ve obviously had an amazing race team for a very, very long time. I have found it interesting, multiple times throughout this year Marshall Carlson at HMS, he’ll talk about how everybody in the shop is so excited to be working there, working on our race cars, never seen the organization happier and more excited to go racing than they are right now. I find that crazy to think because you look at all the races that Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon, they’ve had multiple, like, powerhouse drivers at one time on their team. For them to be saying this is the most excited they’ve ever been is pretty unreal to me when we’ve got four young guys in the sport who haven’t really won many races, when you really think about it, compared to the guys that used to be there before us.I think maybe he’s saying a little bit of the future is what gets everybody really excited there. Yeah, just an awesome day for the organization. Glad I could be a part of it. THE MODERATOR: Kyle, thanks for joining us today. Congratulations on the run with Hendrick today. KYLE LARSON: Thank you.
THE MODERATOR: We are now joined by the owner of Hendrick Motorsports, Rick Hendrick, whose cars finished 1-2-3-4 today. We are going to open it straight up to questions for Mr. Hendrick. Q. Was this on a bucket list for you at all to see your cars go 1-2-3-4 in a race?RICK HENDRICK: Every time you’re in a race, you like to see them run 1-2-3-4. The feeling is unbelievable. It was probably the longest last hundred laps that I’ve ever seen in a race just because I kind of wanted to see it so bad, so close. To be able to pull that off, that’s kind of one of those things in racing that you would say was on your bucket list.I’m extremely happy and proud of all the guys. It was a great day for the organization. Q. One away now from Richard Petty, Petty Enterprises. We just heard from Kyle Larson that he said you talk about this all the time with him, remind them how close you are. How big of a deal would it be for you to catch now and tie with just one away?RICK HENDRICK: Well, Richard is a good friend. He’s the King of this sport. But any time there’s a record out there, you have an opportunity to break it or tie it. I think a few years back, I thought it would be impossible. If you told me in 19, what, 84 that you’re going to be here for this long or that you had an opportunity to win all these races and championships. I kind of pinch myself because it’s just really hard to do. The sport is so competitive right now.But I think our guys, I know our guys, are working together better than they ever have in the shop with Chad and Jeff Andrews. We’ve got a lot of talented people. Good to see these young guys like William, 11 races in the top 10. When you look at that, now we have four wins this year. Chase has been so close. We got some great tracks for him coming up. I’m really proud of the folks. I just love to see guys like Cliff or Greg become star crew chiefs.It’s all been really good for us. Good to have Rudy. Put Rudy and William together, it’s like magic. We just have to keep digging because everybody behind us, they’re going to be there every week.I’m glad we got it done one time. I don’t know if we’ll ever do it again. I’ve seen Joe do it, I’ve seen Penske do it, I’ve seen Stewart-Haas maybe not win all four cars, but all three cars. To see them dominate a race like that…We just got to get ready, do it again, show up, have a game face on, do the best we can. Q. When did you start to think perhaps you could catch Petty? Did you get to 150 or 200? At what point did that become a goal?RICK HENDRICK: One time I thought I’m not going to live long enough to do this (smiling). It was around 250. Then last year we clicked ’em off. Actually, I really tried not to think about it until this year. This year when everybody started talking about it, then I thought, Man, this is in reach.I’m really proud of the organization. But I’ll say this about Richard: nobody in this sport has ever given as much as he has. To see him on pit road, see him signing every autograph. I’ve got one of his autographs when I couldn’t get in the garage area through the fence at Martinsville. I know what that feels like. He’s a tremendous ambassador for this sport.If I get the record, somebody will break it behind me. Q. We’ve seen a Hendrick team, mostly the 9 team, be dominant, win races. Now you have sustained success across the organization. Why do you think that is?RICK HENDRICK: I think we’ve had superstars that win. We’ve won 17 races before in a year. One car was just dominant, maybe too dominant than the others, which is just so-so. The way we’ve kind of started back four, five years ago, putting all engineers in one place, putting all the crew chiefs in one place, taking our best folks like Ron Malec, they’re in charge of this part of the vehicle, Chad is in the shop, you have Jeff Andrews.When I look at the way they’re working together, respect that the drivers have for each other. They want to beat each other. That’s what we pay ’em to do. I know we don’t, we’ve never had the focus on four. Maybe we wanted to, maybe we tried to, but when they all are in there together, you could give one of the other guys his car and they wouldn’t know the difference, you know, swap cars.It’s rewarding to see. To see Marshall, Jeff Andrews, Chad, the crew chiefs, all of the folks working, and Chevrolet. GM has been a big supporter. Richard Childress and I now have aligned to do things together. Boy, that’s going to make a big difference and has made a difference. He’s a good friend. I respect him a ton.So there’s a lot of things that have come together. But I think having these young guys that are all so young, having Kyle in the mix, he just drives the wheels off of it. I think they all make each other better. To see William blossom like he has, Alex, a guy that didn’t have a chance now have two wins this year, finish sixth in the points last year, I think the future is really bright for us.There’s nothing that beats teamwork. You’re stronger together. That’s been my philosophy on the automobile side and the racing side. I was told early on that I’d never win a championship having multiple cars. It’s worked.It’s all about people. I don’t care what kind of business you’re in, it doesn’t make any difference. It’s people. It’s people that make the difference. Q. Alex Bowman’s future with your team, can you give an update on where you’re at?RICK HENDRICK: We’ve already started. It should be done any time. We want Alex there. He wants to be there. It’s kind of at this point just a formality. Q. Is it a multi-year deal?RICK HENDRICK: Yes. Q. You were talking about Alex. It’s one thing to get the opportunity to join Hendrick Motorsports in general. This year, with him taking over the 48 that made so much history, planting the car in Victory Lane at Dover, talk about how Alex has embraced this opportunity.RICK HENDRICK: First of all, ally, the sponsor, we’re great partners in the car business and in racing. When you say you have to replace Jimmie Johnson, they were more than willing and wanted to let Alex have a chance.I told Alex, You’ve got to be your own guy. You can’t be Jimmie Johnson light. You got to be Alex Bowman, just do your deal. We are going to be there with you and you’re going to do great.Greg is a great crew chief. I just didn’t want Alex to have too much pressure on him getting in that situation. That is some big shoes to fill. No different than going behind Dale or Jeff Gordon, all the championships he has.But I think Alex has embraced it really well. He and Greg are very good together. And ally does a ton of promoting and they really like him. It’s all good. Q. Chase has run up front most of the season but has yet to get into Victory Lane. Is there anything that stands out to you with him or is it mostly circumstances?RICK HENDRICK: It’s just circumstances. I mean, he had a five-second lead at Daytona, the road course. We elected to pit, couldn’t get back to the front. So, he’s been in position to have a good day and win races, but it just hasn’t worked out.He had a great run I think it was Kansas. Guy with new tires on the outside, got blocked there at the end. Those things are going to happen. But he’s too good. That team is too good. He’ll be there. He’s going to win some races and he’ll be there for the championship again. Q. You mentioned some of the challenges building up. A few years ago there were some challenges with the organization, the car not able to win. Talk about this journey going from some relevance to dominance.RICK HENDRICK: Well, I think we had to do some work on the car. I think we submitted a car that was probably a little too vanilla, too many character lines, too much like a stockcar when everybody else, Ford and Toyota, went more aggressive. We had to pay for it.Then when the 1LE came out, all the teams worked together, it was Ganassi, Childress and us, and GM put a lot of effort into the car, we’re seeing the results. I feel like we’re even or as good as or better than a lot of the guys out there.When you’ve been on top of the mountain, you stand there and watch somebody else win 15 races or whatever, you struggle, it just makes you work harder. I think our group of people have so much pride in what has been accomplished, that now they’re super excited. They see the youth in our camp. Nobody is going to retire any time soon.I’ve seen too many drivers retire. I’ve been through it with Dale and Jeff and Jimmie and others. I think we are set for a really good run here for the next years, multiple years. I like where we are. This doesn’t mean a lot. This means we did it one time out of 40 years, I guess. We just got to stay sharp and not think that we’re ahead of anybody, but we just got to race to be there.I think we got great momentum right now. I can’t believe William has 11 top 10s and run up front a lot, I mean, lead, and he’s won two races, last year and this year. I think we’re ahead of schedule with Alex. Chase showed what he can do last year. Having Kyle in the mix, his talent, just makes everybody better. Q. I’m not trying to push you off to the side, but how much patience do you have, how has that changed, certainly you could be closer at any point to just retiring on a boat and enjoying your free time as opposed to being at the track as much. Is there less patience because of fewer opportunities to win races and championships?RICK HENDRICK: Well, I do like to fish. I do like the boat. When I go to the doctor anyway, they ask me if I’m retired. I tell them I’ve got two jobs. I work every day and weekends. I love it. I mean, that’s what makes me get up in the morning. I’m competitive. I think the guys around me are very competitive. We want to win and we want to set records.I’m not going to be every single week, two days a weekend, if we get back to it at the track. I’m there with the guys. I’m with them in the morning. I balance it. But I love it. I’ve raced all my life. That’s all I’ve done. The two things I love in my life other than my family is the car business and racing. I’ve been fortunate to be able to make a living doing both of them.I don’t see retiring any time soon. Q. You’ve seen a lot of Hall of Famers come through your stable. What are your feelings with this specific group that you have now, when you have a day like, this the momentum you do? How does it compare to the days past dominating and winning championships with Jimmie?RICK HENDRICK: I kind of like it better in the old days where you had a points lead, you didn’t have to go to a Round of 4, Round of 8, have a little spread. If you had a really good year, you kind of had a lot. It’s hard to do it now. You could have a flat tire or anything can just take you out of it after you’ve had a banner year.I think these guys, William at 23 has got so much ahead of him. Chase at his age. Alex and Kyle. They’re young guys. I mean, they’ve got a lot of runway ahead of them. We should just get better. They will get better. We will get better. I love the chemistry. I think we’re in good shape for a while. THE MODERATOR: Mr. Hendrick, congratulations on the fantastic day at Dover today. We appreciate your time.RICK HENDRICK: Thank you. Good to see people without a mask.FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

CINDRIC WINS AT DOVER


 DOVER, DE – May 17, 2021 – Austin Cindric worked his way through the field to win at Dover International Speedway, marking his third NASCAR Xfinity Series win of the 2021 season and extended his championship lead to 62 points over second place.“Congratulations to Austin, Brian, Roger, and the entire No. 22 crew,” said Doug Yates, President and CEO of Roush Yates Engines. “Austin and Brian showcased their maturity and patience as they worked their race strategy and drove to the front of the field for the win. Dover is a unique and challenging track, but Austin was able to conquer the Monster Mile.”Cindric started the race in 16th position, but was able to maneuver the No. 22 Team Penske Ford Mustang through the field to finish Stage 1 in eighth, after a remarkable save on lap 44.  After four fresh tires, at the Stage 1 caution, he continued moving forward to finish Stage 2 in third place. On lap 150, Cindric passed the race leader and never looked back while finishing 3.786 in front of second place.“There are just very few places that really have the same intensity throughout a lap,” commented Cindric. “It is quite challenging to race here. We were able to make it back from 16th starting position today which I knew would be our biggest challenge throughout the course of the race.”Ford Performance teammates Ryan Sieg with RSS Racing finished P8 and Riley Herbst with Stewart-Haas Racing in P17. The NASCAR Cup Series raced on Sunday while Ford Performance teammates Joey Logano with Team Penske finished P5, Kevin Harvick with Stewart-Haas Racing in P6, and Cole Custer with Stewart-Haas Racing finished in P10.The NASCAR Cup & Xfinity Series is headed for the inaugural Circuit of the Americas (COTA) race in Austin, Texas this weekend.
 33 CHAMPIONSHIPS – 419 WINS – 380 POLES! 
*Photos courtesy of NASCAR Media & Getty ImagesAbout Roush Yates Engines  
Roush Yates Engines is a leading-edge engine development company based in Mooresville, NC consisting of two state-of-the-art facilities – Roush Yates Engines and Roush Yates Manufacturing Solutions, a world class ISO 9001 / AS9100 certified CNC manufacturing facility. The company’s core business includes designing, building and testing purpose-built race engines. 
 
Ford Performance in partnership with Roush Yates Engines is the exclusive engine builder of the NASCAR FR9 Ford V8 engine and Ford Mustang 5.2L V8 engine, used in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge series.
 
With an unparalleled culture of winning and steeped in rich racing history, Roush Yates Engines continues to follow the company’s vision to lead performance engine innovation and staying true to the company’s mission, provide race winning engines through demonstrated power and performance. 
 3 Series – 18 Teams – 81 Races

DIRTcar Racing to Sanction 4 Cylinder Division in Northeast

CONCORD, NC – The DIRTcar Northeast divisional ladder is now complete with the addition of the DIRTcar 4 Cylinder class joining DIRTcar Big Blocks, 358 Modifieds, Sportsman Modifieds, and Pro Stocks. DIRTcar Racing recently announced the expansion to track promoters and it was well-received as over 10 tracks have brought the sanctioning to their existing 4 cylinder division. A $2,550 point fund will be offered through the Hoosier Racing Tires Weekly Championship Points. From May 14 through Sept. 6, points will be earned in each 4 Cylinder Feature held at the participating tracks. Just like the other four DIRTcar Northeast divisions, a driver’s top 16 finishes will be tallied and the top 10 overall will share from the point fund. The first overall champion will collect $500. The only requirement for 4 Cylinder teams to earn the points is to obtain a DIRTcar membership, which is an $80 cost. The membership comes with the same benefits as all other DIRTcar divisions, including aa $50,000 supplementary insurance policy. Teams have until July 19 to get their membership and be included in the points.  “When we first introduced the possibility of 4 Cylinder sanctioning it went over very well with the promoters,” said DIRTcar Northeast Director Dean Reynolds. “Just about every sanctioned track has a 4 cylinder division so let’s give the teams something to shoot for as well with a little added PR.“Because 4 cylinder rules are diverse across the northeast we will simply go with home track rules,” Reynolds continued. “But our goal is to have a common, uniformed rules package down the road to see if we could increase numbers and improve safety.”The Hoosier Racing Tires Weekly Championship Points have become an important part of DIRTcar sanctioned weekly shows in the northeast. The total weekly point fund is now $48,000 for 2021. The points are also showcased in the Hoosier Racing Tires Weekly Championship on DIRTcar.com.Tracks participating in the program are Airborne Speedway, Albany-Saratoga Speedway, Bear Ridge Speedway, Brewerton Speedway, Can-Am Speedway, Freedom Motorsports Park, Genesee Speedway, Glen Ridge Motorsports Park, Mohawk International Raceway, and Ransomville Speedway. The new program will be on hold in Canada as current COVID restrictions have opening dates delayed in Ontario and Quebec. Follow DIRTcar Northeast on Twitter and Facebook and be sure to bookmark DIRTcar.com for news, race reports, and more. PHOTO: Jacy Norgaard
DIRTcar Racing is brought to fans by many important sponsors and partners, including: DIRTVision (Official Live Broadcast Partner), Hoosier Racing Tire (Official Tire), SIS Insurance (Official Insurance Provider), VP Racing Fuels (Official Racing Fuel), Chevy Performance Parts, iRacing (Official Online Racing Game), Arizona Sport Shirts/Gotta Race, and NAPA Auto Parts (SDS). Contingency sponsors include: ARP (Automotive Racing Products), ASI Race Wear (SDS), Bassett, Bicknell Racing Products, Billy Whittaker Cars & Trux (SDS), Cometic Gasket (SDS), COMP Cams, Drydene, Fast Shafts, Fox Factory (SDS), Arizona Sport Shirts/Gotta Race, Jerovetz Motorsports Shock Service, KSE Racing Products, MSD, Quarter Master, Schoenfeld Headers, Summit Racing Equipment, and Wrisco (Exclusive Racing Aluminum) (SDS); along with manufacturer sponsors, including: Beyea Headers, FireAde, Intercomp, K1 Race Gear, Racing Electronics and Velocita USA.

Final Quad Appearance Caps Busy Day For DeJoria

CHARLOTTE, NC (May 16, 2021) — Three rounds of racing today showed that the ROKiT Bandero Premium Tequila Toyota Camry Funny Car and driver Alexis DeJoria will be a tough team to handle as the NHRA season ramps up. The 11th NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals highlighted the strength of DeJoria’s race car and also showcased her skill behind the wheel.

“We had a very positive day today. What a turnaround from last race,” said DeJoria. “Our ROKiT/Bandero Toyota Camry was consistent. We qualified number two. We were the best of the opening round and won the first two quads. Any time you see a win light come on, it’s an ego booster. We were just on it today.” 

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The experienced driver made the most of two days of qualifying posting impressive times including the quickest run of Friday night that earned her three qualifying bonus points and the provisional No. 1 spot. On Saturday she was bumped back one position but entered race day as the No. 2 Funny Car on the property and a favorite to go rounds.

DeJoria and the ROKiT Bandero Tequila team did not disappoint as the blasted down the track in the first round winning their quad and lighting up the scoreboard with an impressive 3.903 second run. It was the second quickest run of the event and brought the near capacity crowd at zMAX Dragway to their feet.

In the second round quad DeJoria was matched up with a very tough trio of drivers including Bob Tasca III, Matt Hagan and Cruz Pedregon. Once again DeJoria showed an aggressive attitude jumping off the starting line just behind Hagan and then racing to victory posting the quickest run of her round. The win moved DeJoria into the first final quad of her career at the four-wide national events.

The final quad featured her Toyota teammate J.R. Todd, John Force and Pedregon. It was a line-up of heavy hitters and DeJoria held her own to close out her race day. DeJoria, Todd and Force left the starting line with nearly identical reaction times and all three Funny Cars were storming down their respective lanes. DeJoria’s race car was mixing up cylinders throughout the run and uncharacteristically slowed to 4.057 seconds, her second slowest elapsed time of the weekend.

“I honestly felt like it was going to be our day, but in the finals, unfortunately we dropped a cylinder at the step,” said DeJoria. ”Then more down track and that was it for the day. My reaction times are coming around. We’re just figuring things out and I know we’re going to win a race very soon. We’re going to stay and test here tomorrow at zMAX and get both cars on point. We’re going to bring the back-up car we ran in Atlanta out and make sure it’s all good. You never know when you’re going to need to pull that second car out and it needs to be just as good as the first one. In Houston, we need to do the same thing as we did here – good runs in qualifying and staying consistent.”

The success on the track moved DeJoria up to sixth in the Funny Car point standings and also moved her closer to the fifth and fourth place Funny Cars. The team will head to Houston Raceway Park for the NHRA SpringNationals set to kick-off Friday, May 21.

Qualifying Results

Q1: 3.930 sec, 301.74 mph; Qual. 1

Q2: 4.085 sec, 272.83 mph; Qual. 2

Q3: 3.949 sec, 318.54 mph; Qual. 2 

Bonus Points: +3 (Quickest of Q1)

Race Results

First Round
Driver                                    Qual       R/T         ET           MPH 
Alexis DeJoria                   2              .107        3.903     325.45 (W)

Bob Tasca III                       7              .084        3.955     329.50 (W)

Blake Alexander                10           .110        9.579     71.56

Robert Hight                      15           .080        4.351     271.13

Second Round
Driver                                    Qual       R/T         ET           MPH 
Alexis DeJoria                       2              .090        3.929     320.13 (W)

Cruz Pedregon                      6              .094        3.971     319.52 (W)

Bob Tasca III                          7              .091        4.559     189.84 

Matt Hagan                           11           .055        4.036     307.51

Final Quad
Driver                                    Qual       R/T         ET           MPH 
John Force                             1              .065        3.916     328.78 (W)

J.R. Todd                                4              .063        3.944     327.82 (R/U)

Cruz Pedregon                     6              .121        3.934     326.87

Alexis DeJoria                       2              .064        4.057     309.49

Camping World Funny Car Top Ten

1.          Bob Tasca III, 360

2.          J.R. Todd, 343

3.          John Force, 329

4.          Matt Hagan, 259

5.          Ron Capps, 235

6.          Alexis DeJoria, 228

7.          Tim Wilkerson, 218

8.          Cruz Pedregon, 216

9.          Robert Hight, 215

10.       Blake Alexander, 150

WILKERSON TURNS FOCUS TO HOUSTON AFTER TOUGH FOUR-WIDE NATIONALS

CHARLOTTE, NC (May 16, 2021) — Tim Wilkerson and the Levi, Ray & Shoup Summit Racing Shelby Mustang felt like they had a race car and tune up to go rounds on Sunday at the 11th NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway. The winner of the 2016 Four-Wide Nationals was confident his qualifying performance positioned him for a long day at the track today.

During the three qualifying sessions leading up to race day Wilkerson was right in the mix with a tough Funny Car field. On Friday night his Ford Mustang Funny Car struggled like the rest of the field on a cool and green race track but he bounced back with a strong run to open up qualifying on Saturday. The Levi, Ray & Shoup Summit Racing Mustang made the third quickest run of the session landing in the No. 4 qualifying spot and solidly positioning itself in the show.

“That first run on Saturday showed what we are used to seeing from this race car,” said Wilkerson. “We have a strong tune-up that will run quick with the rest of the guys. I was feeling good after that run and I knew we could be competitive with elapsed times like that.”

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The team closed out qualifying with 4.105 second pass and slipped back one spot in the qualifying order heading into Sunday as the No. 5 Funny Car. Wilkerson would start his pursuit of his second Charlotte Four-Wide Nationals win racing against No. 4 J.R. Todd, No. 12 Jim Campbell and No. 13 Terry Haddock. 

In the opening round Wilkerson was in lane two and right in front of him matt Hagan advanced to the second round with a 3.93 second pass. Before the first round the team examined all the lanes and felt good about their lane selection. When the Mustang Funny Car took off Wilkerson immediately knew it was in trouble. The Goodyear slicks overpowered the track and the veteran driver tried to give his 11,000 horsepower race car a quick feathering of the throttle to get it to hook back up but it was too late.

“I don’t know why the car did what it did,” said Wilkerson. “It is kind of irritating. I am going through the diagnostics now. It felt like when we launched we went right over a patch of ice. You can look at the run on the computer and you see a lot of tire chatter. All out other runs were nice and smooth. We are going to look at a couple things and see if we can figure this out. We have a good race car. We looked at how we ran on Saturday and we felt really confident. We felt that if it just went down the track we would go on to the next round. It didn’t go down the track. (Car chief) Richard (Hartman) really liked that lane and (Matt) Hagan ran 3.93 seconds right in front of us. I felt really good that we were going to make a good run and go on to the second round.”

The team will head to Houston in seventh place in the NHRA Funny Car point standings.

Qualifying Results

Q1: 8.615 sec, 51.30 mph; Qual. 13

Q2: 3.952 sec, 320.05 mph; Qual. 4

Q3: 4.105 sec, 249.12 mph; Qual. 5

Bonus Points:  +1 (3rd quickest of Q2)

Race Results

First Round
Driver                          Qual    R/T      ET        MPH 
Tim Wilkerson                  5              .123        4.397     220.37

J.R. Todd                              4              .063        3.952     325.53 (W)

Terry Haddock                   13           .133        4.095     305.63 (W)          

Jim Campbell                     12           .089        4.194     303.16

Camping World Funny Car Top Ten

1.          Bob Tasca III, 360

2.          J.R. Todd, 343

3.          John Force, 329

4.          Matt Hagan, 259

5.          Ron Capps, 235

6.          Alexis DeJoria, 228

7.          Tim Wilkerson, 218

8.          Cruz Pedregon, 216

9.          Robert Hight, 215

10.       Blake Alexander, 150

Race Wrap—2021 NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Street-Legal Drag Racing Presented by HPJ Performance

Written by Ainsley JacobsThe third event of the 2021 Holley NMRA Ford Nationals drag racing series took place just outside of St. Louis, Missouri, at World Wide Technology Raceway over the weekend of May 15-17, 2021, with the 16th Annual NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Street-Legal Drag Racing Presented by HPJ Performance.
An iffy weather forecast presented challenges to the schedule, but the bulk of the event was able to be completed. Sadly, on Sunday afternoon, the rain returned and prevailed to the point where the race had to be called. Some classes were able to be run to completion, but the remaining final rounds that weren’t wrapped up will be contested at the next event, the Inaugural NMRA Ford Performance Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio, over the weekend of June 10-13, 2021.
From the vendor midway to the UPR Products Car Show, exciting on-track action and tons of new personal bests and records, the event was a highlight of the NMRA tour and only further fueled the fire of the critical season championship points chases that are already in full swing.
In the combined NMRA VP Racing Madditives/NMCA Mickey Thompson Street Outlaw class, Tony Hobson of Lake St. Louis, Missouri, clinched the qualifying advantage when he ran 4.279 at 167.07 mph in his ProCharged ’90 Mustang for the number one position. Hobson held strong throughout eliminations and put Nicky Notch’s ’79 Mustang on the trailer in the semi-finals. Newcomer to the NMCA series, Randy Matlock of Missouri, had a bye and was eligible to race his LS-powered ’92 Mustang in the rain-postponed finals, but the two men will have to wait to run one against another until the NMRA and NMCA meet up again in Martin, Michigan, and a winner can be determined.
NMRA Edelbrock Renegade joined forces with the NMCA Edelbrock Xtreme Street class, and reigning NMRA champion Joel Greathouse outran the rest of the field in qualifying with his 4.522 at 155.15 mph time slip. Greathouse and his KBX Performance-backed ’93 Mustang, which is owned by Jeremy Wolf, scored four round wins in a row to race in the finals against the number three qualified driver, Martin Connelley, who had done the same with his ’90 Mustang. The all-NMRA final round for the two drivers, both from Kentucky, was ultimately postponed due to rain and will instead be run at the following event in the series tour in Norwalk, Ohio.
For the third time in as many races this season, Samantha Moore was the number one qualified driver in JDM Engineering Limited Street. The lady from Brighton, Michigan, coaxed a quick 8.212 at 167.09 mph pass from her supercharged ’14 Mustang. Moore didn’t make it to the finals, but the number two and four qualified drivers, Chad Wendel and 2020 champion Bill Putnam, respectively, did the deed with their ’07 and ’94 models. Although it was set to be an exciting final, the results will have to wait as rain put a hold to the final round fun for the day.
In G-Force Racing Transmissions Coyote Stock, Pennsylvania-based hotshoe Nathan Stymiest earned the number one spot when his ’92 Mustang buzzed the clocks with a 9.640 at 138.64 mph pass. Stymiest bowed out during the elimination rounds, but Randy Soper who had qualified second with his ’04 Mustang Mach 1 and Kevin McMullin who had qualified sixth in his ’94 Mustang both hustled hard enough to enjoy trips to the finals. Their journeys, however, were cut short by the weather and the two men will have to wait it out to see who gets the Edelbrock Victor trophy at the next NMRA race on their calendars to be held in Ohio.
Mark Anderson was the quickest qualifier in Richmond Gear Factory Stock, his 10.101 at 130.63 mph trip besting the rest of the pack. Anderson, who hails from Downs, Illinois, advanced to the semi-finals where he defeated Derek Grove. Meanwhile, Justin Fogelsonger of Mont Alto, Pennsylvania, had qualified third and had a bye into the finals. The two were ready to put their ’86 Mustangs against one another for all the marbles, but the weather had other plans and the outcome will be determined at the next NMRA race in Norwalk, Ohio, instead.
ARP Open Comp’s drivers were all gunning for the top spot in qualifying, and Ronnie Haislip of Nolensville, Tennessee, earned the honors with a .002-second reaction time in his ’67 Mustang. The finals, however, hosted James Johnson Jr and Larry Geddes. Geddes’s ’90 Mustang had been running quicker than ever this weekend, but he slowed from his 10.55-second dial in to run 10.724 at 104.19 mph in the finals which enabled Johnson of Westland, Michigan, and his ’91 Mustang to take the win when the pair ran 10.229 at 131.48 mph on a 10.20 goal.
Index racing is alive and well in Exedy Racing Clutch Modular Muscle, and Lee Goetz cut a near-perfect light of 0.001-seconds in qualifying to have his name slotted into the number one spot. As always, eliminations whittled the field down to the fiercest of the pack, with the familiar faces of Adam Cox of Kentucky and Charlie “The Professor” McCulloch of Georgia rounding out the finals. In a rare slip, McCulloch fouled the start with his ’04 Cobra and lit the win light in Cox’s lane so that his ’99 Mustang could run out the back to victory with a 10.074 at 134.03 mph pass on an original dial in of 10.01-seconds.
Randy Rosner had the best reaction time during HP Tuners Super Stang qualifying, just 0.007-seconds away from a perfect light. In the finals, the class win went to Carleton, Michigan resident Andy Ransford and his ’06 Mustang when Ransford ran close to his 13.45-second dial in with a 13.559 at 101.23 mph time slip. In the other lane, Kevin McKenna’s ’14 Mustang GT rolled the beams and its driver headed back to pack up and return to Indiana as the runner up.
Last year’s champion, Bob Dill from Templeton, Pennsylvania, outgunned the rest of the Detroit Locker Truck & Lightning field in qualifying with his ’01 Ford F-150 and an 0.008-second light to qualify number one for the third race in a row. However, it the two drivers right behind him, Johnny “Lightning” Wiker and Mike Roup, who raced in the final round of eliminations. Wiker wanted the win with his ’99 Lightning, but his 8.700 at 157.93 mph pass on an 8.54 dial in wasn’t enough to hold off Roup’s run of 11.282 at 118.67 mph on an 11.23 dial in. Roup turned the win lights on in his lane, and Wiker was deemed the runner up.
Just 0.003-seconds off his 11.75 index, Lloyd Mikeska was the number one qualifier in RacePagesDigital.com Ford Muscle at the start of eliminations. He earned two round wins before going out in the semi-finals, while Danny Towe and Clyde Dunphy both were still in the show. In the finals, Georgia-based Towe took a trip to the winner’s circle in his ’70 Mustang when he ran 11.866 at 97.59 mph on his 11.75 dial in and Dunphy settled for second.
Competitors in QA1 True Street cruised 30-miles around the Illinois area, from Madison to Collinsville and back before making three back-to-back passes down the dragstrip. Winning the class outright was Greg Edwards and his ’02 Chevy Camaro on a three-run average of 8.147-seconds while Tony Karamitsos and his ’69 Camaro earned the runner up honors with an 8.245-second average. Finishing first for the 9-second group was Randy Thomas and his ’10 Ford Shelby GT500, right on the money with a 9.004-second average. Additional winners included Keith Seymore (10-second), Ernie Keppler (11-second), Del Holbrook (12-second), Rodney Ward (13-second), Amanda Jordan (14-second) and Chris Gaff (15-second).
The 2021 Holley NMRA Ford Nationals drag racing series continues at the Inaugural NMRA Ford Performance Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio, on June 10-13 and both the NMRA and the NMCA will return to World Wide Technology Raceway in 2022 on May 12-15 for another epic installment of the NMRA/NMCA Super Bowl of Street-Legal Drag Racing. For more information and advance tickets, visit NMRAdigital.com.

Podium finish for Honda in Mid-Ohio 120


Eversley, Smithson race to third-place finish
LA Honda World rally to top 10 after on-track incident

LEXINGTON, Ohio. (May 15, 2021) It was another podium finish in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge series for the Atlanta Speedwerks team, with the #94 Honda Civic Type R TCR of Ryan Eversley and Scott Smithson finishing third today in the Mid-Ohio 120 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

Eversley entered the weekend in second place in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge point standings, following second and seventh-place finishes in the opening two rounds of the championship.

Today’s third place for Eversley, alongside new co-driver Smithson, solidifies the long-time Honda racer as a championship contender in 2021.

Eversley and Smithson’s Atlanta Speedwerks teammate, Brian Henderson set the fastest time in TCR qualifying in the #84 Honda Civic Type R TCR but unfortunately lost the time following post-qualifying tech inspection. Starting in the 15th spot, Henderson and co-driver Robert Noaker pushed through a broken front splitter to finish 11th at the flag.

The LA Honda World entry of Mat Pombo and Mike LaMarra started on the front row, and looked set for a top-five finish in their #73 Civic Type R TCR, before being forced off track with less than an hour left in the race. The incident required an extra stop for repairs, but the #73 team rallied to cross the line eighth after the two-hour race.

The VGMC entry of Victor Gonzalez and Ruben Iglesias started the race 14th and brought their #88 Honda Civic Type R TCR car home in the 13th position.

Mid-Ohio 120 Honda TCR Race Results
3rd – #94 Ryan Eversley and Scott Smithson, Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type R TCR
8th – #73 Mat Pombo and Mike LaMarra, LA Honda World Honda Civic Type R TCR
11th – #84 Robert Noaker and Brian Henderson, Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type R TCR
13th – #88 Victor Gonzalez and Ruben Iglesias, VGMC Racing Honda Civic Type R TCR

Quotes
Ryan Eversley (#94 Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type R TCR), finished third: “I was thinking about the [championship] points at the start of my stint, because I think we were around eighth when I took over and it’s so hard to pass here. Plus the TCR field is really balanced at the moment. So, I had to make sure I didn’t run into anyone and get a penalty while still staying near the #77 that we’re battling in the points. When I got to the Audi I was able to get by, and then I got to the back of the Hyundai and waited for him to make a mistake in order to get by. And then at the end we got traffic that allowed me to get up and onto the podium. I had to be really patient through the stint, which is never easy for a driver! But our Honda rotated through the corners so well today, I was able to keep the tires under us and we were one of the fastest cars, even at the very end of the race. I think we could have been even higher up if we had more time and less GS traffic. But, I’m really happy for our team and for Scott [Smithson], it’s his first podium in IMSA. To be the top Honda, and on the podium at Mid-Ohio, is always great.”

Scott Smithson (#94 Atlanta Speedwerks Honda Civic Type R TCR), finished third: “It feels really good to get this result. Honestly, it’s been a lot for me to take in all at once—coming from SRO and having just one season there. Driver changes are new to me, IMSA is new to me, Mid-Ohio is new to me, so there’s been a lot to learn, but it’s been awesome. The car felt great. I still have to clean up some race craft stuff on my end, but Ryan [Eversley] was able to bring it home and fantastic to be on the podium.”

Next
The MICHELIN Pilot Challenge next travels to Watkins Glen International June 24-26 for the four-hour Tioga Downs 240. The race can be streamed live on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.

HPD has three ready-to-race Civic models for touring car competition. The line starts with the affordable and reliable Civic Si TCA race car, then leads to the Civic Type R TC racer that puts legendary Type R performance on track, and culminates with the no-compromise, championship-winning Civic Type R TCR race car. Our unparalleled trackside support at every level from HPD engineers is a unique benefit that no other manufacturer can offer. Find out more about these cars and our touring programs at: https://hpd.honda.com/Motorsports/Touring

Honda Racing social media content and videos from Daytona are available on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/HondaRacingHPD) and on Twitter at (https://twitter.com/HondaRacing_HPD).  Produced by CoForce Digital Media, YouTube video packages can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV.  

Podium Results for Grosjean and Palou at the GMR Grand Prix of Indianapolis


Romain Grosjean finishes second for Honda on the IMS road course
Alex Palou continues strong run of results with third-place finish
Practice for Indianapolis 500 begins on Tuesday

SPEEDWAY, Ind. (May 15, 2021) – Starting from the pole, Honda’s Romain Grosjean led a race-high 44 laps in today’s GMR Grand Prix of Indianapolis, but was unable to hold off a strong closing run from Rinus VeeKay and finished second at the GMR Grand Prix of Indianapolis.

The result was Grosjean’s best finish in three starts this season for Dale Coyne Racing with RWR, and the Formula One veteran was joined on the podium by fellow Honda driver Alex Palou, who now has a third-place finish to go with his win at the season opening Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama.

Behind, the lead trio, Graham Rahal recorded a strong result after contact on the opening lap damaged the right-side bodywork of his Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda. After going “off-sequence” with an early pit stop during the resulting caution period, Rahal was able to combine speed with fuel economy to climb from 24th to finish fifth.

GMR Grand Prix of Indianapolis Honda Race Results
2nd Romain Grosjean-R Dale Coyne Racing with RWR Honda
3rd Alex Palou Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
5th Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda
7th Alexander Rossi Andretti Autosport Honda
9th Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
10th Marcus Ericsson Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
12th Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport Honda
13th Colton Herta Andretti Autosport Honda
14th Ed Jones Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan Honda
16th Takuma Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda
18th James Hinchcliffe Andretti Autosport Honda
23rd Jack Harvey Meyer Shank Racing Honda
24th Jimmie Johnson-R Chip Ganassi Racing Honda

NTT INDYCAR SERIES Manufacturers’ Championship (unofficial, after 5 rounds)
Honda 408 pts
Chevrolet 405

NTT INDYCAR SERIES Drivers’ Championship (unofficial, after 5 rounds)

  1. Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 176 points [1 win]
  2. Alex Palou, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 163 [1 race win]
  3. Josef Newgarden, Team Penske Chevrolet 148
  4. Pato O’Ward, Arrow McLaren SP 146 [1 race win]
  5. Graham Rahal, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 137

Quotes
Romain Groshean (Dale Coyne Racing with RWR Honda) Started first, finished second: “The support I’ve received from the fans here [after moving from Formula One to INDYCAR in the off-season] has been incredible. Today, we had a great race. The team did a super job, we just got a bit unlucky with some slower cars and traffic. But P2 for just my third race in an Indy car is not too bad! This is why I came here.”

Alex Palou (Chip Ganassi Racing Honda) Started fourth, finished third: “It was a good day, after a tough weekend, to be honest. We grabbed a podium, and learned a lot during the race. It was a bit exciting fighting with [Josef] Newgarden there, he was pushing us hard. But the team did an amazing job and we came away with a third-place finish.”

Graham Rahal (Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda) Started 11th, finished fifth: “To finish fifth, particularly after the contact at the start, was a big deal for us. Honda, the power was good, and also the mileage was there for us to make our [fuel] strategy. So definitely a solid day, and I think we’ve got a good shot going into the [Indianapolis] 500.”

Wayne Gross (Manager of Trackside Support & IndyCar Project Leader, Honda Performance Development) on today’s race: “We had a good shot at the victory today, but things didn’t quite fall our way. Still, it was great to see both Romain [Grosjean] and Alex [Palou] on the podium. Scott [Dixon] and Alex are still at the top of the Drivers’ Championship, while the manufacturers’ race is tightening up, as we thought it would. Thanks to everyone at HPD and our partner teams for their continued hard work, and now it’s time to focus all our efforts on claiming our 14th Indianapolis 500 victory.”

Fast Facts
The “Month of May” begins this weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the GMR Grand Prix. Held on the IMS infield road course, Saturday’s 85-lap race will kick off three weeks of on-track activities leading up to the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 30.

Honda continues to hold the early-season lead in the 2021 INDYCAR Manufacturers’ Championship, with three victories in the first four races this season. After four of 16 races, Honda holds a 14-point advantage (332-318) over rival Chevrolet. The company is seeking its fourth consecutive NTT INDYCAR SERIES Manufacturers’ Championship in 2021.

Next
Activities at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway continue this week, but move to the historic 2.5-mile oval with four days of practice, starting Tuesday, followed by qualifying next weekend for the 105th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 30.

Honda Racing social media content and video links from Indianapolis can be found on Instagram (www.instagram.com/hondaracing_hpd), Twitter (twitter.com/HondaRacing_HPD) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/HondaRacingHPD). Additional features and long-form videos can be found on the Honda Racing/HPD YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV).

chevy racing–indycar–grand pris indianapolis–post race

CHEVROLET RACING IN NTT INDYCAR SERIES GMR GRAND PRIX INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE MAY 15, 2021 Chevrolet prevails on Indy road course, wins second race in a rowRinus VeeKay, 20, earns first victory, follows Pato O’Ward, 21, to Victory CircleINDIANAPOLIS (May 15, 2021) – For the second NTT INDYCAR SERIES race in a row, Chevrolet’s young talent celebrated in Victory Circle. Rinus VeeKay, competing in his 19th race, earned his first victory by prevailing in the GMR Grand Prix on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. VeeKay, who started seventh in the No. 21 Sonax/Autogeek Chevrolet, won by 4.9510 seconds over pole winner Romain Grosjean. VeeKay, 20, of The Netherlands, is the sixth-youngest winner in INDYCAR history. His victory follows Pato O’Ward’s initial Series win two weeks ago at Texas Motor Speedway in the No. 5 Arrow McLaren SP entry powered by the 2.2-liter, twin-turbocharged, direct injected Chevrolet V6 engine. O’Ward turned 22 on May 6.  Chevrolet last won two consecutive races to close the 2020 season, and has 91 victories in 154 races since returning to NTT INDYCAR SERIES manufacturer competition in 2012. “I knew we had the car; we were so fast. I’m so happy for the team, so thankful. I couldn’t have done it without them. A perfect day. It’s amazing,” said VeeKay, who delivered the first victory for Ed Carpenter Racing since July 10, 2016, when Josef Newgarden won at Iowa Speedway. “Getting my first podium here last year and now winning, it’s a dream.” Newgarden, a winner on the 2.439-mile/14-turn road course in 2020, finished fourth in the No. 2 Snap-on Team Penske Chevrolet. Simon Pagenaud placed sixth in the No. 22 Menards Team Penske Chevrolet and first-year Series driver Scott McLaughlin finished eighth in the No. 3 PPG Team Penske Chevrolet. VeeKay, who earned his first NTT P1 Award on the IMS road course last October and finished then a career-best third, took the lead for good on Lap 65 of the 85-lap race when Grosjean pitted for the final time. VeeKay led twice for a total of 33 laps. “I’m proud of him; he drove a great race,” team owner/driver Ed Carpenter said. “We were getting good mileage with the Chevrolet engine. The team has done a great job.” Following six practice sessions next week on the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval, Chevrolet drivers will aim to claim the NTT P1 Award for the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500. A Chevrolet has started on the pole six times since 2012. NBC and NBCSN will telecast qualifications Saturday, May 22, and Sunday, May 23. NBC will telecast “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” at 11 a.m. ET Sunday, May 30. TEAM CHEVY FINISHERS:1.   Rinus VeeKay, No. 21 Sonax/Autogeek Ed Carpenter Racing4.   Josef Newgarden, No. 2 Snap-on Team Penske6.  Simon Pagenaud, No. 22 Menards Team Penske8.   Scott McLaughlin, No. 3 PPG Team Penske11. Will Power, No. 12 Verizon 5G Team Penske15. Pato O’Ward, No. 5 Arrow McLaren SP17. Felix Rosenqvist, No. 7 Vuse Arrow McLaren SP19. Sebastien Bourdais, No. 14 ROKiT/AJ Foyt Racing20. Dalton Kellett, No. 4 K-Line Insulators/AJ Foyt Racing21. Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 86 Lucas Oil Arrow McLaren SP22. Charlie Kimball, No. 11 Tresiba/AJ Foyt Racing25. Conor Daly, No. 20 MannKind Ed Carpenter RacingDRIVER QUOTES:TEAM CHEVY DRIVER RINUS VEEKAY, NO. 21 SONAX ED CARPENTER RACING CHEVEROLET, CAPTURES CAREER-FIRST WIN IN GMR GRAND PRIX ON ROAD COURSE AT INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY. QUICK WINNER’S QUOTE: WINNING AT INDIANAPOLIS. AT THE BEGINNING OF THE DAY, DID YOU THINK THIS COULD HAPPEN?“I actually thought it, yeah. We had an awesome start to the weekend. I knew we had the car; we were so fast. I’m so happy for the team, so thankful. I couldn’t have done it without them. A perfect day. It’s amazing, and thank you to all the friends coming out. Getting my first podium here last year and now winning, it’s a dream.” OVER THE FINAL FEW LAPS, WERE YOU EVER FAZED BY THE RAIN OR THEM TELLING YOU TO SAVE FUEL OR ANY OF THAT?“I was not concerned about the fuel. I just hoped the rain was not going to get worse. I’m standing in Victory Lane.” THE JOURNEY TO GET HERE AND HOW MUCH YOUR MOM AND DAD HAVE SUPPORTED YOU. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN TO YOU?“It’s amazing. It’s great to have them here. It’s hard to get them overseas, but it’s a dream come true not just for me but for the team, it’s for the family, everyone at home. I’m extremely grateful. My parents sacrificed everything to get me up here. I’m extremely happy.” JOSEF NEWGARDEN, NO. 2 SNAP-ON TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, FINISHED 4TH: “I was happy with the car yesterday (in qualifications) and I was happy with it today, too. I felt like we just got beat on pace today. We didn’t have the speed. We hung in there and finishing fourth is a decent day with this Snap-on car. Team Chevy won the race and that’s positive for all of us. We’ve had good Chevy engines to start this month, so I’m feeling positive going into the ‘500’.’’  SIMON PAGENAUD, NO. 22 MENARDS TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET FINISHED 6TH): “Finished sixth today at the GMR Grand Prix. Really happy. Massive performance improvement on the Menards Chevy today. Looking forward into the season I think we’re in a really good place. Sixth was really good today. Our group is obviously excited about what’s coming up, the Indianapolis 500, which is the No. 1 goal this year.” SCOTT MCLAUGHLIN, NO. 3 PPG TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET (FINISHED 8TH): “Not a bad day for the PPG Chevy. We were probably a top-six car. Unfortunately, we got caught up with some backmarkers and lost a couple of spots in the pit sequence toward the end. Still, very solid for us. I feel we wanted to be in the top eight in the championship heading into the Indy 500 and that’s where we’re at. Hopefully, we can have a big week next week preparing for the biggest race of my life and come out strong. Very proud of everyone; we completed every lap and to finish in three top 10s now in a row is a cool thing.”  WILL POWER, NO. 12 VERIZON 5G CHEVROLET, (FINISHED 11TH):“We obviously started from behind a bit with mishap in qualifying yesterday. The pace out there today was so strong that it was very difficult to make up many positions, especially when you trying to get into the top 10 or top five. I thought the pace of the Verizon 5G Chevy was good today, and if we have a better qualifying session I think we have a solid points day. Now we’ll take a couple days to prepare and get ready to start work on winning the Indianapolis 500.” SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS, NO. 14 ROKIT AJ FOYT RACING CHEVROLET (FINISHED19th): “Disappointing weekend for the No. 14 ROKiT Chevrolet. Didn’t have the qualifying we wanted and started 20th. On top of it, got fouled up at the start. I picked the outside and that’s where all the chaos ended up, so I lost a bunch of positions. Pace wasn’t great but wasn’t really bad during the race, and toward the end we’re fighting for 15th, 16th, 17th. I made a small mistake coming across the pit exit line and got a drive-thru, which put us right back where we started. Onwards and upwards. Hopefully we got that out of the way and can get a better day for the ‘500’.’’ DALTON KELLETT, NO. 4 K-LINE INSULATORS AJ FOYT RACING (FINISHED 20th): “The first race of the Month of May is wrapped up and P20 for the K-Line Chevy. It’s not exactly where we wanted to end up. As the stint went on and the track rubbered up, we were dealing with more and more understeer. We just used our tools and tried to keep on top of the tires. Consistency was better and we’re making moves from where we started, so that was good. It’s always an exciting race here. Once we got clear air I was running by myself and trying to be consistent. I think we’ve learned some valuable stuff and looking forward to coming back in a couple days and going the other way.” CHARLIE KIMBALL, NO. 11 TRESIBA AJ FOYTA RACING CHEVROLET (FINISHED 22nd): “Kind of a tough day for the No. 11 Tresiba Chevrolet, but we accomplished all our goals. Not the result we wanted, but at the same time we ran almost all the laps, we had three really clean pit stops and this is a crew that hasn’t worked together until this weekend and hadn’t done any over-the-wall stops until warmup this morning. So the fact that they were able to get three really good stops during the race is was a really good thing. It lays a very solid foundation as we head into the week of practice for the Indianapolis 500. I’m looking forward to continue working with Sebastien (Bourdais) and Dalton (Kellett).” RINUS VEEKAY RACE WINNER PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPTTHE MODERATOR: We are joined here in the Dex Imaging Media Center by our race winner, driver of the No. 21 Chevy for Ed Carpenter Racing. Welcome, Rinus. Congratulations.RINUS VEEKAY: Thank you very much.THE MODERATOR: You are now the third new winner of the year. You started off with a broken finger during testing, and now you are winner and in Victory Lane. Tell us about your day and how excited you are.RINUS VEEKAY: It was an amazing day. To start with this morning, we started in the warmup fastest lap time. Of course, doesn’t say too much, but the car felt amazing, very good on the long run, even though we only did blacks. But then we went to the reds, learned from last year because we had many races here, that the reds were very good in the long run, and yeah, just start was great, had a great ability to pass other cars, and strategy was amazing by the team. So everything was just on it.Amazing day, and definitely one I will remember for the rest of my life.THE MODERATOR: We have been joined by race steward Arie Luyendyk here in the media center, close friend of Rinus’s family. A couple more nuggets about today’s win. Rinus has now won at all four levels of the Road to Indy and now in INDYCAR. The last team win was in Iowa July 10th of 2016 with Josef Newgarden and you’ve now become the sixth youngest winner in history at age 20 years, eight months and three days. Yes, we look that kind of stuff up.We will take some questions from here in the media center and then we’ll go to Zoom.Q. Kate mentioned you’re the first driver to win on all four levels of the Road to Indy. What has it meant to you to have that defined path and the scholarships to make it to INDYCAR, from U.S. F2000 to INDYCAR?RINUS VEEKAY: It’s amazing. Of course my first-ever test in U.S. F2000 in that new car was here. That was the Chris Griffis test in 2016. So yeah, just amazing to have so much experience on this track in a long time and go through all the ladder systems and win races and know how to race here.It was an awesome race, and just feels amazing, and I’m very grateful for what the Road to Indy has done to me.Q. Your first top 5 was here in this race last July, your first pole was here in October, your first podium was here in October, and now your first victory is here today. This has got to be your favorite road course, right, favorite course?RINUS VEEKAY: Oh, yeah, I like this track, especially when you have a good car. It’s always more fun.But yeah, just — you know, this is a track that really suits me. Got to be quick, but you can also attack and pass, and there’s many, many opportunities to move forward. That’s exactly what I could do today, so I’m very happy. Really have to thank the team. I’m very grateful for all the sponsors and very excited to start driving with Dale Coyne next week.Q. And also the heritage of this race team is so deeply rooted in this facility with Ed Carpenter and Tony George and the fact that for years they’ve been chasing victories, came close to winning Indy 500s. They’ve won Indy 500 poles. Now here you give the team their first victory at the speedway on the road course. How do you process all that?RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, it’s crazy. It’s just great for the team. Everyone is so happy. They were already like super motivated, but I’m pretty sure now for the 500 everyone is just going to be next-level motivated. I know we have a good 500 car, good oval car, and yeah, I think we can really, really do well, and I’m just excited to get going.I also want to thank my private sponsors, JUMBO and Basic-Fit. They’ve made everything possible for me, and of course Ed Carpenter Racing. They are the greatest team out there.Q. And also last year you became the fastest teenager in Indy 500 history. I guess next week the next goal is to become the fastest 20-year old in Indy 500 history?RINUS VEEKAY: That’s my goal. Yeah, we’re working on it. I feel super confident. First race win is there, and it takes a lot of pressure off, to be honest. Now I can just drive the 500, and yeah. You know, I don’t have to show that I can win because I’ve done it.Now it’s just going to be focusing on the best possible result, and yeah, I want to thank Ed Carpenter Racing for everything they’ve done for me so far, and yeah, Chevy for the great engines. Indy 500 coming up, lots of power, lots of speed. I’m sure we’ll be good.Q. When did you see today that victory was possible? Was it basically beating — when Romain was coming out of the pit stop and you were ahead of him? Was that when it became very clear to you?RINUS VEEKAY: Yes, definitely. It felt like I could drive away from him. I heard I had a very, very nice gap to him, so I kind of took it easy, tried to save a little bit of tires, even though it was hard to keep them going, but yeah, we got there, saved some fuel at the end, and everything was awesome, like perfect down to the millimeter for the team. Yeah, very happy with them.I don’t know how many times in a row they have given me a great strategy.Q. There was a little bit of drizzle off and on it seemed like today. How much jeopardy was there out there on the track, or what was the sense of this thing could go to rain?RINUS VEEKAY: I wasn’t really sure. I just tried to get the best laps down as possible. I could see the rain on the aeroscreen, but it didn’t seem like it would give a big impact. So kind of took it a little easy on the brake zones, but yeah, corner grip felt just how it should be.No, I’m very happy it stayed dry at least. But the race is over and I’m very happy with it.Q. Romain basically pointed out you were born after he first started racing. Obviously Arie — was Arie a big-time idol growing up? Give us a little background on how far you’ve come so fast.RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, Arie was a big idol of me. Still is. His dad made my dad’s gearboxes in Formula 4, so a long family connection, and it’s great how fast I’ve been able to — well, first make that step to racing in the U.S. and then move up throughout the ladder system to win my first INDYCAR race.Q. If my memory serves me right, in 2016 you were introduced as the first confirmed driver for the new U.S. F2000 car in 2017. Does it almost feel right that your first victory came here, where you were first introduced to the American motorsports market?RINUS VEEKAY: Oh, definitely. Well, I would take a win anywhere, to be honest, but this is one of the best places to do it. Yeah, I’m just super grateful for all the opportunities I’ve had. I’ve won a race in an INDYCAR.Q. I know you’ve talked a lot about the excitement of moving to Speedway, making this town your home. Does that make this win and being able to have fans around here and interact with your fans like I know you really enjoy doing, does that make this win any sweeter than a first win would have been anywhere else?RINUS VEEKAY: Oh, yeah, it’s definitely an awesome way to win. We had our first real driver parade and driver intro. It was awesome to just greet the fans before the race and see everyone super excited. It’s definitely more surreal to win when there’s fans around.I live in — like right next door, so every day I wake up, open the curtains and I see the grandstands of the racetrack. Definitely the closest I get to a home race. Also for the team, and yeah, just the perfect day on the perfect place on earth.Q. I know we’ve said that this team has been waiting for a win now for nearly five years. Could you sense how much this meant not only to Ed but the folks in the crew around you, many of which have been around here since 2016 and even a good time before that?RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, it means a lot to the team. Everyone knew at the team that they could win a race, that we could win a race. But we just had to show it. Today was finally the day, and everyone in the world can see that Ed Carpenter Racing with Rinus VeeKay are race winners.Q. Ed told me post-race that he felt like this was maybe your first real complete race of your INDYCAR career now for about a year and a half. What did you feel like you put together to be able to come through with a mistake-free, clean, perfect race?RINUS VEEKAY: Well, I think pace was really, really big today. We had awesome pace, which really helped make the strategy work. Passing was easy because of the pace.Every time someone came in my path I could attack and go for it, and yeah, that really put a few cars between me and Romain at the end, which gave me a lot of comfort.Yeah, definitely a nice way to win with a little bit of margin, and I could kind of breathe at the end, so that was very nice.Q. Now you’ve won this one; how about we take the one after this, as well? Maybe win that one, as well?RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, I’m very keen to try to sweep the month of May. That’s of course my goal. Yeah, the mentality and everyone’s confidence is super high at the team, so I think we can definitely go for that win. We’ve had an awesome car last year, and Ed Carpenter Racing has showed the last few years that they have the car to win the 500.Yeah, very excited to go drive with Bitcoin during the Indy 500 on the car, and yeah, very excited to try to win the race.Q. The move you made to split the middle on Jimmie Johnson and Alex Palou there seemed like it was pretty pivotal. Could you take us through that, why it was important to make that move there, and did you have any concerns that you might not get through?RINUS VEEKAY: Well, I saw they were coming out of pit lane, but I knew they were teammates, so they have cold tires. I had just kind of the peak on my tires on the reds, so I knew I had to get by and kind of get a gap.Alex defended on the back straight. Jimmie drove the normal line. There was just about one car width space between them and I went for it. I knew there were a lot of marbles on track, so didn’t want to get the tires too dirty, so I stuck it between there, and I know Jimmie is a smart driver, same for Alex, and yeah, kind of hoped they would see me, and they did. I was very happy that I could stick that move, and definitely gave me a big adrenaline kick.Q. Moves like that, it seems like you’re getting a reputation for being that kind of risk taker and having that kind of daring in your game. Do you like having that reputation?RINUS VEEKAY: Oh, yeah, definitely, as long as it’s clean, which it is. I like passing. As spectacular as possible would be nice. No, it’s very nice, and I’m very, very happy that I’ve got the car to do it with. Definitely makes passing a whole lot easier.Q. They were talking to the broadcast about your parents being over here and how they’ve been living with you in Speedway and I guess you’re coming over here to live in the motor home the next couple weeks and they’re going to stay in your place. What’s that been like with the living arrangements at your place and what it’s like having them here for the whole month?RINUS VEEKAY: It’s great to have them over. Of course it’s big to have them here. It’s a lot to take in, but also they were worked as hard as me to get where we are now, so it’s great that they can, yeah, just get in, like soak in this whole experience with me, and yeah, it’s awesome to win when they are here. I am very much looking forward to dinner, and especially the dessert. No, it’s amazing to have them here, and I love them, so it’s amazing.THE MODERATOR: When Alex Palou won at Barber he allowed himself a “bad food” kind of dinner and he was going to seek some fried chicken. What is it you’ll be seeking tonight?RINUS VEEKAY: Cheesecake. Oh, yeah. I told them on the radio, it’s a deal I have with my trainer, when I get a podium I can eat a cheesecake, so I’m very excited, and I think I kind of deserve one.THE MODERATOR: Like a piece of cheesecake or a whole cheesecake?RINUS VEEKAY: I see him do this, so I think it’s a whole one, but I will just go for a piece before I — yeah, well, have a little bit worse night.Q. After St. Pete’s race, a lot of drivers had some complaints about the physical conditions after the race, and today we had a long stint with green flag. Do you think that the physical conditions today was something to complain, also, or not?RINUS VEEKAY: No, actually not. You know, I wanted the race to end earlier, but I had a different reason.But no, physically I felt good. I think St. Petersburg was the hardest race with the temperatures.I live together with my personal trainer; we wake up every day to prepare for days like this, and this really shows how much it pays off. Very happy with it, and for me, the harder the better.Q. You’re the first Dutch winner in INDYCAR. I was wondering what does it mean to you, and do you think your success is going to help further popularize INDYCAR in the Netherlands?RINUS VEEKAY: Oh, definitely, I think so. It’s big to win. Of course I kind of had to show that I could win. That was kind of a pressure. But now that I’ve done it, I think I would like to continue doing it, but yeah, Dutch fans love Dutch success, so I think because of this, more fans are going to follow me. I’ve showed that I can win, and yeah, I can do it more often. Very happy and very happy that so many Dutch people are following me already.Q. I think Arie Luyendyk is in the room with you there if I’m correct. Has he said anything to you or any interactions?RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, I talked to him and I was very happy for me. I got many, many thumbs up, so yeah. Great day for the Dutch people.Q. I want to ask you, through the first five races, four of the five winners have been in the INDYCAR youth movement, so to say. Can you talk about how successful the younger drivers have been so far? I know it’s a short sample size, but four of the five racers have been in that Indy youth movement.RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, it’s crazy. I’m the third new winner, third new INDYCAR winner of 2021. I thought last year was crazy. This year is crazier.But I’m very happy. It’s really showed how high the level is, and new generation is coming, so just very happy and, yeah, great podium, too, with Alex, who has become a good friend of mine, and Romain, who of course brings a huge, huge audience from F1 over to INDYCAR.Q. Rinus, we’ve talked about Arie a few times today, but can you expand upon what he’s done for your career to get you to this point and where do you think he’s been the most beneficial or what he’s taught you the most that’s helped you be a winner now?RINUS VEEKAY: Well, Arie has been around for a very long time. I actually met him at the Indy 500 in 2016 here in Indianapolis at the Union Jack’s Pub in a meet-and-greet.No, it’s great to have Arie here, and yeah, he has given me a lot of tips but also very good guidance about watch out for any rule changes and him being an official or steward, he gives me good tips and many reminders that really help me out. Yeah, just little, little tips and a lot of good atmosphere he gives to me so I can win the race.Q. I’m curious what goes through a driver’s mindset when you take over the lead, final stint, and do the nerves go up, heart rate go up? Do you have to play games in your head? Do you feel any vibration around the track? Does anything in the mindset change from the previous stints?RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, I knew I could win the race, so didn’t want to think too much about it. I kind of wandered off sometimes about, okay, you’re going to be a race winner. Oh, I’m not. I just want to kind to take it easy. But yeah, just big goal was don’t make mistakes. I had a good, comfortable gap, and yeah, I knew the tires were going to go a little bit there at the end, so wanted to do everything to kind of save the rears, but yeah, did everything I could, and yeah, very grateful for everyone around helping me, especially the team Ed Carpenter Racing.Q. How confident are you going into the latter part of the month of May and if you are able to win the 500 do you want VeeKay or van Kalmthout on the trophy?RINUS VEEKAY: Let’s do both.I am very, very excited to get going for the 500. Yeah, Ed Carpenter Racing makes very, very good Indy 500 cars, and everyone is super motivated. It’s the biggest race of the year for them. But to finish off the Indy Grand Prix just before with a win is a big, big confidence boost for everyone at the team.Q. You had said on the race broadcast that your family had sacrificed everything to get you up here. Aside from this win, is there one key moment in your journey that stands out the most?RINUS VEEKAY: It’s this one, yeah, definitely. I’ve never cried when I won a race, but I have done today. So did my parents. Yeah, it’s just amazing.Their lives have evolved around me for a very long time to make this possible for me, and I’m extremely grateful. Yeah, I’ve finally done it. It just feels surreal.I think I will kind of get the feeling more once I wake up tomorrow morning, but no, it’s just great that they can be here and enjoy this moment with me.Q. How much momentum does this give you going into next week for testing and then obviously for qualifying at the weekend?RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, this is definitely a very good way to end up the streak of road courses, and now getting into oval mode. Yeah, it’s definitely going to be big for the team.Everyone is going to be super motivated. They know we can win the race. We already knew, but now we did, and I think everyone will be — yeah, will be just giving it their all. I knew they always do, but yeah, we can win the Indy 500, and I’ll do everything I can to make it happen.Q. What milk have you decided to go for if you win the 500?RINUS VEEKAY: I decided to go for whole milk. I actually wanted buttermilk, but that wasn’t an option. I saw the photo of Simon pouring milk on his face, and I think the whole milk gives the nice thick layer of milk, which I like.Q. At Laguna Seca when I interviewed you for Indy Lights, you said something to me. You said that you wanted to be the next Max Verstappen of INDYCAR. You’ve already gotten Rookie of the Year and you had your first race win now, and I want to know do you think you’re getting closer to that performance level that he has, but also the orange army?RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, definitely. I could already see many VeeKay fans here, but I think this is definitely a big step forward. Yeah, I kind of proved myself today, so I think Dutch people are always very proud of their countrymen, and yeah, I think this is the best thing I could do today to get the Dutch army bigger than ever.Q. I think you’re the first driver to win at every level of the Road to Indy and then in INDYCAR, as well. Just wondered kind of your reflections on the Road to Indy and how much that’s helped you to get into the position you are today because obviously the scholarship system is not common around the world, it’s something quite — at least relatively unique to America in the stature that it is. I wonder your kind of reflections on that?RINUS VEEKAY: Yeah, it’s definitely unique that there’s a scholarship system. It really prepares you. You’re always driving before the INDYCAR in the same weekends, and you see the INDYCARs going and you can see the races in real life but you can also race on the tracks you’re going to race in an INDYCAR. I have done many passes, many laps on this track before in all sorts of cars, and it definitely prepared me. I knew everything that could happen in every corner, every scenario, just because of the Road to Indy. So very grateful that I had the opportunity to do that and be successful in the Road to Indy, and yeah, show that if you can win the Road to Indy, you can win an INDYCAR race.THE MODERATOR: Thanks, Rinus, for joining us today. Congratulations on your first career INDYCAR win and I’d like to give a special thanks to all the international media that joined us today.RINUS VEEKAY: Thank you very much. See you at the next one. 

Front Row Start for Acura at Mid-Ohio


Filipe Albuquerque, Wayne Taylor Racing qualifies second for Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio
Dane Cameron to start third in his Meyer Shank Racing ARX-05
Jeff Kingsley to start eighth in Acura NSX GT3 Evo for Compass Racing

LEXINGTON, Ohio (May 15, 2021) – Rolex 24 at Daytona winner Filipe Albuquerque secured a front-row start for Acura today at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for Sunday’s Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio, Presented by the TLX Type S. Albuquerque qualified second fastest in the Konica Minolta Wayne Taylor Racing Acura ARX-05 he shares with Ricky Taylor.

The 15-minute session, to set the starting field for this weekend’s endurance classic, saw Dane Cameron also have a strong run, posting the third-fastest time in his Sirius XM Meyer Shank Racing Acura prototype. His co-driver in Sunday’s two-hour, 40-minute race will again be Olivier Pla.

In the production-based GTD category, Jeff Kingsley qualified his Compass Racing Acura NSX GT3 Evo eighth in the team’s IMSA debut with Acura, where he will partner with two-time defending series champion Mario Farnbacher. Another 2013 debutant, Till Bechtolscheimer, will start 10th in his Gradient Racing Acura, co-driven by Marc Miller; while John Potter qualified 13th in his Magnus with Archangel NSX he shares with Andy Lally.

Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio, Presented by the TLX Type S Qualifying Results
2nd overall – #10 Ricky Taylor & Filipe Albuquerque, Wayne Taylor Racing Acura ARX-05 DPi
3rd overall – #60 Olivier Pla & Dane Cameron, Meyer Shank Racing Acura ARX-05 DPi
8th GTD – #76 Mario Farnbacher & Jeff Kingsley, Compass Racing Acura NSX GT3 Evo
10th GTD – #66 Mark Miller & Till Bechtolscheimer, Gradient Racing Acura NSX GT3 Evo
13th GTD – #44 Andy Lally & John Potter, Magnus with Archangel Acura NSX GT3 Evo

Quotes
Filipe Albuquerque (#10 Wayne Taylor Racing ARX-05) qualified 2nd: “I’m not going to lie, I’d prefer to be on pole! But starting on the first row is great. Starting on the outside is not ideal here at Mid-Ohio, but we’ve seen that all the prototypes are very close on lap times. I was really happy with the car, it was super close, and shows how competitive this field is. It’s just a little bit wounding on my ego [to wind up second].”

Mario Farnbacher (#76 Compass Racing Acura NSX GT3 Evo) on today’s GTD qualifying, the first for Compass Racing with Acura: “First of all, so happy to be back in the IMSA paddock with an Acura NSX. Considering that this program came together really, really quickly, its good. Obviously, we still have a lot of work to do, but we’re improving each session, so we’re definitely going in the right direction. I’m pretty happy with qualifying, now let’s see what we can do in the race tomorrow”

Fast Facts
Acura is undefeated at Mid-Ohio since returning to prototype competition in 2018. Helio Castroneves and Ricky Taylor won for Acura Team Penske in 2018 and 2020; teammates Dane Cameron and Juan Pablo Montoya won for Acura in 2019.

The new Acura TLX Type S is making its public debut in the Acura Fan Zone Display area. Building on a lineage of driver-focused refinement, the all-new TLX Type S is the most powerful Acura sedan ever. The TLX Type S features a dual-scroll turbo V-6 engine that delivers 355 horsepower, sent to all four wheels via rear-biased Super Handling All-Wheel Drive for blistering acceleration and confident handling. 

Two additional GTD teams join the Acura lineup at Mid-Ohio: Compass Racing and Gradient Racing. Gradient Racing returns for a second year of IMSA Sprint Cup competition with the #66 Unit Nutrition Acura NSX GT3 Evo for drivers Marc Miller and Till Bechtolscheimer. Already a successful Acura team in SRO World Challenge America competition, Compass Racing will now also field an NSX GT3 Evo in IMSA for drivers Mario Farnbacher and Jeff Kingsley.

American Honda operates a dozen corporate, manufacturing and R&D facilities in central Ohio, all within a short drive of Mid-Ohio and employing more than 10,000 associates. Many are expected to be on hand this weekend, as Acura teams and drivers seek to extend their string of success in DPi, and add another “double win” with a class victory in the production-based GTD category in the Acura NSX GT3 Evo.

Where to Watch The Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio
Race day television coverage from Mid-Ohio begins at 2:30 p.m. ET Sunday on the NBC Sports Network. Complete, flag-to-flag race coverage also will be available on the NBC Gold Track Pass and the NBC Sports App.

Fans can listen to audio commentary via IMSA.com, RadioLeMans.com and XM Radio channel 392; and follow the race live via in-car cameras, IMSA Radio and timing & scoring available worldwide on IMSA.com and the IMSA mobile device App.

Acura Motorsports social media content and video links from the Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio can be found on Instagram (www.instagram.com/hondaracing_hpd), Twitter (twitter.com/HondaRacing_HPD) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/HondaRacingHPD). Additional features and long-form videos can be found on the Honda Racing/HPD YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV).