No. 43 Insignia/Best Buy Ford Fusion
• AJ Allmendinger made his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut in the spring race at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway in 2007
• This weekend’s event will mark the driver’s sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start at Bristol where his best finish is 16th (2009)
• Allmendinger posted a sixth-place finish at Atlanta two weeks ago, his best finish so far this season
Allmendinger’s Take On Bristol: “Bristol is really a unique track and like a lot of drivers and people in the sport it’s one of my favorite tracks that we go to. It’s a crazy atmosphere. You have this half-mile track with the stands rising tall all the way around it. Its almost like an ancient coliseum or something. The crowd is always electric too.
“After the way we ran at Atlanta the other weekend, I’m really looking forward to getting back at it. Granted, Mike Shiplett and everyone on this No. 43 Insignia/Best Buy Ford Fusion team will have to focus on some completely different things than we had to the first four races, but I’m sure we will be able to build off the last race’s momentum. Bristol is where I qualified my way in to my first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in 2007. To be in such a different place now from where I was then, where I don’t have to worry about whether I’m going to make the race or not, is a huge benefit. The King has three wins here. It’d be awesome for this to be the weekend that the No. 43 gets back to Victory Lane.”
Thoughts From Crew Chief Mike Shiplett: “Bristol is a really fun track. I think everyone always looks forward to heading there. It’s the first short track race of the season so what we’ve focused on the first few races won’t completely apply here. You can almost throw aerodynamics out the window. The focus is purely on handling and what we can do to get this No. 43 Insignia/Best Buy Ford Fusion to driving good. We’ll also have to keep an eye on the grip and how the tires are wearing.”
Chassis History: Chassis No. 288 has been prepared by Shiplett and the No. 43 Insignia/Best Buy crew for this weekend’s race at Bristol Motor Speedway. This Ford Fusion was run as the No. 44 for Richard Petty Motorsports last September at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. Allmendinger finished seventh in that event.
Allmendinger Takes Insignia To The Fans: In Atlanta, Allmendinger introduced a new look to the No. 43 Best Buy racing team. Insignia, one of Best Buy’s exclusive consumer electronic products, features a wide selection of HDTVs, Blu-ray players, home theater solutions, GPS, audio products and more. This Saturday at 9:15 am ET, Allmendinger will head to the Bristol campgrounds to give away Insignia HD Radio Portable Players to 43 lucky fans. Stay tuned to @AJDinger and @RPMotorsports on Twitter for further details.