Thursday, November 12, 2009

Phoenix II Preview

Richard Petty Motorsports posted its second consecutive top-10 finish in a Ford Fusion on Sunday as AJ Allmendinger notched a 10th-place finish at Texas Motor Speedway a week after Elliott Sadler finished ninth at Talladega in the Petty team's Ford debut. Allmendinger hopes to extend the streak this weekend at Phoenix International Raceway and at the season-finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The Texas race marked Allmendinger's fifth top-10 of the 2009 season and seventh of his brief NASCAR career.

AJ ALLMENDINGER: "That was a great way to start our deal in a Ford Fusion. If we keep this up it should give us a ton of confidence going into the 2010 season. Elliott was awesome at Talladega and then we backed that up at Texas. Phoenix and Homestead can be really good for us too. We still have a ton to learn but its good to get these final races to start working on our stuff for next season. With all that has gone on this year, it's a testament to my team and everyone here at the Petty team that these guys continue to produce good cars for us to drive. We are racing hard and you saw that on Sunday."

* Due to the 50 point penalty NASCAR issued to the No. 1 car, AJ Allmendinger and Elliott Sadler both advanced one spot in the driver point standings. Sadler is now 24th and Allmendinger 25th.

* Richard Petty Motorsports has run two races in Ford Fusions in 2009. Elliott Sadler finished ninth at Talladega and Allmendinger finished 10th at Texas last weekend.

* All five of Allmendinger's Champ Car victories came in a Ford-Cosworth powered car. He won at Portland, Cleveland, Toronto, Denver and Road America in 2006.

* Sunday's race marks Allmendinger's 79th start in the Sprint Cup Series and third at PIR.

* Collectively in 2009, RPM drivers have posted two wins, nine top-fives, 24 top-10s and have led 302 laps through the first 34 points races.

* Join over 8,100 Richard Petty Motorsports fans on Facebook and view the latest news, videos and pictures.

* Crew Chief Mike Shiplett started the season with Reed Sorenson in the No. 43 before moving to the No. 44 with Allmendinger starting at Michigan-2.

* In 1969, Richard Petty made 48 out of 50 starts in a Ford. He recorded nine wins, 29 top-fives, 36 top-10s and led 2,291 laps. Petty raced a Plymouth the first two races of the season recording a win at Macon and a second-place finish at Montgomery.

* Richard Petty's last race driving a Ford entry was Dec. 2, 1969 at Texas World Speedway (College Station, Texas). Petty drove the entry to a 21st-place finish.

* Last Sunday's 10th-place finish at Texas was the third-best career finish for Crew Chief Mike Shiplett. The second-year crew chief, who worked with Patrick Carpentier last season, finished seventh at Dover in September with Allmendinger and ninth at Daytona with driver Reed Sorenson in February.

* To follow Richard Petty Motorsports drivers during the race weekend and receive up-to-the minute in-race notes, please follow @RPMotorsports on Twitter.

Credit: Richard Petty Motorsports PR

Photo Credit: Lynne K

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