Thursday, September 1, 2011

Atlanta Race Preview

No. 43 Best Buy Ford Fusion
• Allmendinger has made six starts at Atlanta Motor Speedway
• Allmendinger enters Atlanta in 14th place in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver point standings
• Allmendinger’s best finish (sixth) at the 1.54-mile oval came in 2010

Allmendinger on Atlanta Motor Speedway: “Atlanta is fun and it’s fast; it’s probably my favorite 1.5-mile track. Atlanta doesn't have a lot of grip, so the car slides around a lot, which makes it fun for me to drive. I think I have better finishes at Atlanta than I do at any other 1.5-mile track. Tires go away quickly so the car starts to slide around pretty early in a run. With the grip on the tires going away so quickly I’ll have to figure out where I want to run on the track, and I typically like running on the bottom better at Atlanta.

“I’m going to need a fast Best Buy Ford this weekend. The track is slick so we’re going to have to make sure the car isn’t too loose going into the corner, but still loose enough so it will turn well in the center, since the front tires don’t usually have a lot of grip. Our goal is to try and win this weekend. If we can win, then I think we can get into the Chase. I’m also looking forward to
going to Atlanta for the first time with Greg (Erwin) as my crew chief. He’s good at 1.5-mile tracks and I’m excited to see what I can learn from him this weekend.”

Crew Chief Greg Erwin’s Thoughts on Racing at Atlanta: “Atlanta is another race track for us to visit for the first time this year. I think it’s going to be kind of difficult since that track is one of the oldies, but goodies, and it ages quite a bit each year. It seems to get rougher every year we go back. We are running our Indianapolis car and we had a good run with it there, so we feel good about having that Best Buy Ford heading into this weekend. Atlanta is a track where AJ typically runs well so that also gives us some confidence going into Sunday night’s race.

“The biggest challenge is going to be getting our car setup in one practice session. The early evening session on Friday will be the practice session that will most mimic the race conditions we’ll see Sunday evening with track temperature. The afternoon session we have on Saturday won’t do us much good since the track will cool down 15-20 degrees on Sunday evening from
what it was in practice Saturday. Friday is going to be the only time for us to get a good read on what kind of a car we have. The important thing is going to be having a Best Buy car that is really fast right off of the truck.”

Chassis History: The No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports team has prepared chassis No. 752 for this weekend’s event at Atlanta Motor Speedway. This Best Buy Ford has been run previously this season at Texas, Charlotte and Indianapolis.

Notes: Allmendinger has six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Atlanta Motor Speedway and has completed 1,973 of 1,975 laps at the 1.54-mile track. He has an average finishing position of 15.2 at the Hampton, Ga. Speedway. Allmendinger enters Atlanta in 14th place in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver point standings.

Don’t miss your chance to meet AJ. The Dinger and Miss Sprint Cup will be appearing at the Best Buy store in Peachtree City, Ga. (2703 West Highway 54, Peachtree City, Ga., 30269). The appearance is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 1, from 6-8 p.m. ET and is open to the public.

Can’t get enough of the Dinger? AJ will be signing autographs at the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series autograph session at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Friday from 3-4 p.m. in the concourse underneath the Earnhardt grandstands.

Credit - Richard Petty Motorsports PR

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