Saturday, Jun 10
Speedway Digest Staff

Speedway Digest Staff

Follow us on Twitter @SpeedwayDigest

He may hail from the land down under, but this Sunday Marcos Ambrose, driver of the No. 9 DEWALT Racing Ford, will be racing to make special children feel on top of the world. As a part of the continued "Racing for a Miracle" program, if Ambrose takes his first oval checkered, Stanley and DEWALT will donate $1 million to the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals through the Ace Hardware Foundation to benefit sick and injured children. New this year, if Ambrose and his Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) team finish second or third, Stanley and DEWALT, through the Ace Hardware Foundation, will donate $500,000 and $250,000 respectively.


The opportunity for Ambrose to race for an additional donation continues to prove the dedication that Stanley, DEWALT and the Ace Hardware Foundation have towards the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and the "Racing for a Miracle" program. As in years past, Stanley and DEWALT have already pledged $100,000 to the program this year. It brings the total to over half a million dollars since the program's inception.


Ambrose, who is eagerly awaiting his first oval win, feels that there is no better place to "Race for a Miracle" than the "Monster Mile." His at-track statistics show that he will again be a contender and can easily bring in an additional donation. He has a third-place finish along with two other top-10 finishes at the one-mile track. He knows there is no better time to break through to victory on an oval.


"There would be nothing more special than to win my first oval event and have $1 million donated to the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals through Stanley, DEWALT and the Ace Hardware Foundation," said Marcos Ambrose. "I'm not sure who would be more excited, but I do know though it would mean more to me to help the kids of Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. I am living my dream each week and we're hoping we can make some children's dreams come true at Dover. I can't thank Stanley, DEWALT and Ace enough for allowing our team to race for this opportunity."


Stanley, DEWALT, the Ace Hardware Foundation, Ambrose and the No. 9 RPM team will not only race for a miracle, but also take part in various activities leading into the race weekend. Thursday morning, the team will be guests of Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, the area's local Children's Miracle Network Hospital. While there, Ambrose and the team will visit the children and give them an inside look at the DEWALT race team, including pit stop demonstrations.


On Friday, Ambrose will join his teammate Aric Almirola and owner "The King" Richard Petty as they, along with representatives from Stanley and DEWALT present the $100,000 donation to the Ace Hardware Foundation and Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. Included in the check presentation, Ambrose, Almirola and Petty will unveil a special paint scheme that will run this weekend on the No. 9 Ford Fusion. The special scheme includes four very special children who will also serve as "Honorary Crew Members" of the No. 9 team throughout the weekend. Ambrose, Almirola and Petty will also sign autographs for fans by the car in front of "Miles the Monster" monument.


"We want to continue to grow the 'Racing for a Miracle' program each year," commented Tony Merritt, Director of Motorsports for Stanley Black and Decker. "These children really inspire all of us, and the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals are doing tremendous things on a daily basis. We hope that Marcos and his DEWALT race team can do something pretty special for them this weekend."



Mark Martin Dover Preview

Wednesday, May 29

Despite many asking, No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota driver Mark Martin doesn't have a favorite victory, car or racetrack. The 34-year veteran isn’t big on making lists, but if you push him a little he has trouble hiding his affection for Dover International Speedway where the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races this weekend.

Martin makes his 54th start Sunday at the concrete mile oval. His first came May 16, 1982 when the 23-year-old rookie finished fifth, only four laps behind race winner Bobby Allison who won by three laps. Martin has logged four victories and 24 top-five finishes at the “Monster Mile” including a third-place finish in September.

Martin said the first step toward a good finish Sunday at Dover is getting in a good qualifying lap on Friday. He set the track record of 132.719 mph in September 1997 and he won the pole at this race last year by trusting in his crew chief Rodney Childers. Martin said Childers installed a chassis setup right before qualifying that might have made the driver shudder had he known the full details.

That’s when the driver/crew chief trust produces results on the track.

MARTIN ON WINNING POLE RUN LAST YEAR: “I would never try that again (laughter). I anticipated the car being loose, but I didn’t ask Rodney (Childers, crew chief) if he tightened it up. I knew the conditions were looser than they were in our mock qualifying run and I didn’t want to ask him because I didn’t want to get concerned. I knew that I only had to make it one mile without wrecking and I was going to drive to the limit and slightly beyond and I felt like I did that. I certainly wouldn’t cheat it again that far. That’s how much trust we put in our crew. They listen to my input and I trust their judgment.”

MARTIN ON DOVER:“Ever since I started racing there in 1982 I have loved Dover. It’s hard to put into words, but from the first moments it just felt good. In the 1980s it was asphalt and you slipped all over the place, but it was a blast to drive. They put concrete down in the mid-1990s and like most drivers I haven’t been a big fan of concrete. I understand why track owners do that but as a driver I wish they had left it asphalt. Despite all that, Dover is still a good place to race even with concrete. Anywhere you have a shot to win you are going to be pumped up to go to the track and this weekend we’re pumped up for Dover. We had a rocket ship there in September. We fell down two laps because of a caution flag and then made them up and finished third.”


A quarter of the way through his sixteenth season behind the wheel in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series David Starr finds himself eighteenth in the NCWTS driver standings. Some unfortunate racing luck has detoured the veteran drivers push to the top of the rankings, although he is only twenty-four points from tenth in the very tight points race. Starr is looking for a turnaround as the tough trucks head to one of NASCAR’s toughest tracks, the Monster Mile at Dover International Speedway. Striping Technology, L.P. will adorn the hood of the No. 81 Toyota Tundra in Friday’s Lucas Oil 200.

“We are excited to go to Dover, it is just an awesome racetrack,” explained Starr. “We had a flat right front tire at Charlotte and that kind of knocked us out of a decent finish. It’s just kind of bad luck to get a flat so we are looking to go to Dover and race again. Hopefully, we have some of that bad luck behind us.”

Backing Starr’s Toyota Tundra this Friday will be the Striping Technology L.P. of Tyler, Texas. The company provides safety services including highway striping, traffic signals, signage, pavement marking and installation to general contractors, business owners and government agencies.

“We’re excited to have Striping Technology on board with us for the entire season; this will be their first race on the hood as a primary sponsor. Linda Rudd, the owner is a great friend and a great person,” Starr explained. “Striping Technology paints the stripes on the highways, roads and bridges. I think they paint almost all the road stripes in the state of Texas. We are honored to have them on board and I’m just excited about everything this week.”

“We are just so excited to be part of the NASCAR Truck Series, David Starr and the SS Green Light team,” said Linda Rudd, owner of Striping Technology L.P. “We really just love David Starr, we want do to what we can to help the team. We enjoy the whole thing; the excitement of the Truck Series and being at the track and we just totally enjoy NASCAR. I love racing and since we met David we’ve just become huge supporters and great friends. He is a great young man; so friendly and great with the fans. We can’t wait to get to the track.”

“It will be a tough fought race for sure,” Starr concluded. “It’s always exciting at Dover; it’s such a fast track… It’s just an awesome place to race.”

The Lucas Oil 200 is the 298th consecutive NCWTS start for the SS Green Light Racing team and the 312th career start for Starr in the Truck Series. David has 4 victories, 47 top-five and 106 top-ten finishes over the previous fifteen Truck Series seasons. Dover has been one of Starr’s best tracks with one pole, three top-5 and seven top-10 finishes in eleven starts. David has an impressive 9.1 average finish at the Monster Mile.

Team owner and veteran crew chief Bobby Dotter will call the shots from atop the pit-box for Starr this weekend.

There are 35 entries for the Lucas Oil 200 which will kick-off a NASCAR triple header with the NASCAR Nationwide Series and the 5-Hour Energy 200 on Saturday and the NASCAR Sprint Cup FedEx 400 Benefiting Autism Speaks on Sunday at Dover international Speedway.

Delaware native and CJ Faison will make his NCWTS debut behind the wheel of the SS Green Light Racing No. 07 on Friday evening. Faison is a regular in the NASCAR K&N East Series and is currently ninth in the driver’s standings.

Practice for the Lucas Oil 200 will be Thursday, May 30th from 2:30 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. and 4:15 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Friday, May 31st there will be two laps of qualifying at 10:05 a.m. and the green flag will fly in the Lucas Oil 200 at 5:00 p.m. All times Eastern. The race will be shown live on SPEED TV and will also be broadcast live via on the Motor Racing Network and on SIRIUSXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.

SS Green Light Racing PR

Joey Coulter, driver of the No. 18 Darrell Gwynn Foundation Toyota Tundra, admits that his 32nd-place finish in last week's N.C. Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway was a set-back in his hunt for the 2013 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) Driver's Championship. However, the 22-year-old Toyota Racing driver knows that a good poker player never shows their hand and although he may be down, he's definitely not out.


When you think about Dover International Speedway (DIS), you think of a unique dual-purpose facility designed to accommodate both motorsports events and horse racing. Since September of 2000, the NCWTS has made an annual stop at what is now known as the "Monster Mile." Although the one-mile oval may be intimidating to some, Coulter finds the high-banked concrete track and the high speeds it produces as a breath-taking thrill ride.


Making his third start at DIS this weekend, Coulter hopes to improve on his 2012 track-best finish of sixth and take a gamble on his odds in the sixth race on the 2013 NCWTS schedule - when you play big, you win big and the monster-sized trophy is worth the price to ride.



Cole Whitt will return to the wheel of a stock car this Saturday in the 5-Hour Energy 200 at Dover International Speedway, teamed up with the four-car NASCAR Nationwide Series team of TriStar Motorsports. Whitt, a former Red Bull Racing development driver who most recently drove for JR Motorsports, is expected to be behind the wheel of a TriStar Toyota for a number of races this year.

“I’m really excited to hop back in the seat of a race car; it feels like forever since last season,” said Whitt. “I’ve had success in my four starts at Dover and look forward to taking on ‘Miles the Monster’. I am grateful for the opportunity Mark (Smith) and TriStar have lined up for me and I hope to have success with the No. 44 crew.”

Whitt and TriStar Motorsports, owned by veteran team owner and engine builder, Mark Smith, already have a head start working together in 2013. The 21-year-old native of Alpine, CA has been working in the shop daily as a mechanic in TriStar’s research and development department.

“We are really excited to add Cole to our driver lineup,” Smith said. “We have been watching Cole since he made his debut in the NASCAR K&N Series and he has already shown that he has the talent to win at many different levels.”

Whitt joins TriStar after earning four top-five and 14 top-10’s while driving for JR Motorsports last year. As a rookie, Whitt ended his 2012 campaign sitting seventh in the Driver Points Standings. Without sponsorship, the third-generation driver from the outskirts of San Diego was left sidelined and looking for a ride.

Arguably one of the brightest young talents in racing, Whitt will drive the No. 44 Toyota at “The Monster Mile” with sponsorship from Lockton. The 2008 USAC National Midget Series champion has competed at the one-mile oval in four previous events with his best overall finish coming from the 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. Whitt battled door-to-door with Kyle Busch in the closing laps before settling for second after leading 23 laps.

Whitt hopes to top that performance on Saturday as the NASCAR Nationwide Series descends on Dover International Speedway. Watch for Whitt and his No. 44 Lockton Toyota when the field takes the green flag at 2:30 p.m. ET. Live coverage can be seen on ESPN.


Charlotte was previously one of Mike Bliss’ favorite tracks but after Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide Series race, his opinion may differ. Bliss is happy the History 300 is just that, history. There was a lot of back and forth with car handling and track condition.

Bliss started the History 300 from the 15th position and uncharacteristically fell back in the field early in the race. “The car’s not handling bad, so I don’t know why we’re so slow,” exclaimed Bliss, who seemed slightly irritated. Shortly after, Bliss came back over the radio saying the car was “a little tight.”

At lap 39, a caution was thrown for debris, allowing Crew Chief Paul Clapprood and the No. 19 TriStar Motorsports crew an opportunity to free-up Bliss’ Toyota Camry. Doing so, they put on four fresh Goodyear tires, a full tank of Sunoco race fuel, added some tape to the grill, and made track bar and air pressure adjustments.

Restarting 20th, it took a few laps before Bliss came back over the radio stating, “I need it to roll a little better in one and two, you just can’t go anywhere out here.”

The second caution of the day was brought out on lap-45. Bliss from the 23rd position said, “I need more grip.” So, Clapprood and the crew put scuff tires back on Bliss’ Camry and took two rubbers out of the left rear.

Again, Bliss restarted 20th and set out to find balance with his race car. Bliss became silent over the radio for over 30 laps. At lap 140, Bliss expressed that “It’s tighter getting into one and two and I need more front grip.”

Clapprood instructed Bliss to “hang in there for six more laps and then we’ll come in for a green flag pit stop”. At lap 146, Bliss barreled down pit road for his second set of fresh Goodyear tires, air pressure adjustment, made a wedge adjustment and a full can of fuel.

Shortly after the green flag stop, a caution came out. At that point, Bliss came over the radio stating he had a “real bad vibration, the rear of the car feels like it is moving side to side, and I think something is broke.” Without a doubt, Clapprood quickly called Bliss to pit road so his TriStar crew could examine the left rear track bar bolt, put scuff tires on and slide a rubber in the right rear.

While making timely adjustments, Bliss restarted 22nd and one lap down leaving him racing for the ‘lucky dog’ position on the race track. Bliss earned the ‘lucky dog’ when a caution came out on lap 177. Still not happy with his car, Bliss brought the No. 19 TriStar Motorsports Camry to pit road for a single wedge adjustment.

With only a few laps to go, the field was brought under its final caution of the day. Bliss and crew knew the importance of track position at this point in the race, so they chose not to pit and hold down the 20th position. Upon the restart Bliss said “that’s the best it’s been today,” and moved up one position to close the History 300 in the 19th position.

“Aside from Kyle Busch, I think the whole field was running the same speed today, it was near impossible to gain any spots on track,” said Bliss.

With his finish at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Bliss has earned nine top twenty finishes out of 10 NASCAR Nationwide Series races this year. Also, Bliss is 12th in the Driver Points Standings leading into this weekend’s race at Dover International Speedway.


Coming off another successful weekend, winning their sixth NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) event of the season, the No. 54 Monster Energy team and Kyle Busch now turn their attention to the appropriately named “Monster Mile” that is Dover International Speedway. This weekend the 28-year-old will attempt to break his three-way tie with Todd Bodine and Carl Edwards for most wins (three) at Dover International Speedway in the Nationwide Series.

Busch will make his 10th Nationwide Series start piloting the Monster Energy Toyota Camry with Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) on the concrete oval where he has earned three wins, seven top-five and 10 top-10 finishes. In addition, Busch has led a total of 853 laps over his NNS career at Dover. He dominated the event each of the last three times he earned victory at the Delaware track, leading the field 192, 191 and 157 of 200 laps in each of his winning runs during the Fall and Spring of 2010 and the Spring of 2008 respectively.

Another area where Busch is strong at Dover is pole-qualifying, earning three first-place starting spots from 2008 to 2010. Not only did he start from the pole position during that time, but in both years he finished the day with victory. Three times in 2013 Busch and the No. 54 JGR team have started from the pole and taken the Monster Energy machine to victory, almost doing it a fourth time last week at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway, where Busch narrowly missed the pole, starting second and ending the day by taking the checkered flag. Odds are a win from the pole position could likely happen again.

Busch last experienced Victory Lane at the Monster Mile in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in 2011. This weekend he’ll try once again to win in that series Friday night, then attempt to sweep the Nationwide and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series over the weekend, something he’s accomplished twice this year at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. and at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth.


When Denny Hamlin comes to Dover International Speedway to compete in the June 2 “FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks” NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, he will be sporting a special Autism Speaks puzzle piece paint scheme on his No. 11 FedEx Toyota.

This will be the third straight year that Hamlin will don a unique paint scheme for the spring event at the Monster Mile, as well as the third consecutive year that FedEx, Autism Speaks and Dover are teaming up for the spring race weekend at Dover.

In addition, drivers across all three series – NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series – will be showing their support for Autism Speaks throughout race weekend by displaying a puzzle piece decal on their respective cars.

In total, 28 drivers from the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, 17 drivers from the NASCAR Nationwide Series and 21 drivers from the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series are participating. They include:


NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

Jamie McMurray, No. 1 Chevrolet

Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Miller Lite Ford

Dave Blaney, No. 7 SANY America Chevrolet

Marcos Ambrose, No. 9 Stanley Racing Ford

Danica Patrick, No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet

Denny Hamlin, No. 11 FedEx/Autism Speaks Toyota

Casey Mears, No. 13 GEICO Ford

Tony Stewart, No. 14 Code 3 Associates/Mobil 1 Chevrolet

Clint Bowyer, No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota

Greg Biffle, No. 16 3M Ford

Ricky Stenhouse Jr., No. 17 Best Buy Ford

Matt Kenseth, No. 20 Dollar General Toyota

Paul Menard, No. 27 Libman/Menard's Chevrolet

Kevin Harvick, No. 29 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet

David Stremme, No. 30 Swan Racing Toyota

Jeff Burton, No. 31 Cheerios Chevrolet

David Ragan, No. 34 Front Row Motorsports Ford

Josh Wise, No. 35 MDS Transport Ford

JJ Yeley, No. 36 Delaware Office of Highway Safety Chevrolet

David Gilliland, No. 38 Long John Silver’s Ford

Ryan Newman, No. 39 Haas Automation Chevrolet

Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Energizer Chevrolet

Aric Almirola, No. 43 Smithfield Ford

Bobby Labonte, No. 47 SCOTT Products Toyota

Mark Martin, No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota

Martin Truex Jr., No. 56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota

Michael Mcdowell No. 98 Ford

Carl Edwards No. 99 Subway Ford


NASCAR Nationwide Series

Brian Scott, No. 2 Shore Lodge Chevrolet

Austin Dillon, No. 3 Advocare Chevrolet

Trevor Bayne, No. 6 Ford EcoBoost Mustang

Jeff Green, No. 10 TriStar Motorsports Toyota

Elliott Sadler, No. 11 OneMain Financial Toyota

Eric McClure, No. 14 Hefty®/Reynolds® Toyota

Mike Bliss, No. 19 TriStar Motorsports Toyota

Brian Vickers, No. 20 Dollar General Toyota

Justin Allgaier, No. 31 BRANDT Chevrolet

Kyle Larson, No. 32 Vizio/Hulu Chevrolet

Ty Dillon, No. 33 WESCO Chevrolet

Michael Annett, No. 43 Pilot/Flying J Ford

No. 44 TriStar Motorsports Toyota

Jeremy Clements, No. 51 US Petroleum Consultants/Repairable Vehicles/USS James E. Williams, DDG 95 Chevrolet

Travis Pastrana, No. 60 Roush Fenway Racing Ford

Dexter Stacey, No. 92 Maddie’s Place Rocks Ford

Alex Bowman, No. 99 Toyota


NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

Chris Lafferty, No. 0 Koma Unwind Relaxation Drink Chevrolet

Ty Dillon, No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet

Jeb Burton, No. 4 Turner Scott Motorsports Toyota

Justin Lofton, No. 6 Chevrolet

John Wes Townley, No. 7 Zaxby’s Toyota

Max Gresham, No. 8 Trimmer Assist Chevrolet

Ron Hornaday, No. 9 Andersons Maple Syrup Chevrolet

Jennifer Jo Cobb, No. 10 Chevrolet

Todd Bodine, No. 13 SealMaster Toyota

Timothy Peters, No. 17 Parts Plus Toyota

Ross Chastain, No. 19 Melon 1 Ford F-Series

Brennan Newberry, No. 24 Qore 24 Chevrolet

Ryan Blaney, No. 29 Cooper Standard Ford F-Series

James Buescher, No. 31 Rheem Chevrolet

Miguel Paludo, No. 32 AccuDoc Solutions Chevrolet

Darrell Wallace Jr., No. 54 Toyota Tundra

Brendan Gaughan, No. 62 South Point Hotel and Casino Chevrolet

German Quiroga, No. 77 NET10 Wireless Toyota

Matt Crafton, No. 88 Goof Off/Menard’s Toyota

Johnny Sauter, No. 98 Carolina Nut Co./Curb Records Toyota

Bryan Silas, No. 99 Rockingham Speedway Ford

As an added bonus, FedEx is also treating the first 11,000 fans through the gate at the June 2 “FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks” NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race to a special giveaway, as they’ll receive a special No. 11 FedEx Delivery Manager koozie to commemorate the event.

This marks the seventh straight year the Monster Mile is partnering with Autism Speaks, the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization, to help raise funds and awareness for the cause throughout race weekend.

Dover Motorsports PR

No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota driver Clint Bowyer has the makings to be one of the coolest school teachers ever, but it appears he’d probably be pretty tough handing out grades. He gives himself and his Michael Waltrip Racing team only a B+ for its 2013 season so far despite sitting fourth in the point standings — eight spots higher with more laps led, top-fives and top-10s than at the same point last year. While he might not celebrate an A grade for the season, he’ll likely blow out some candles Thursday in celebration of his 34th birthday.


ON THE SEASON SO FAR:“I’d give the 5-hour ENERGY team, myself included, a B+ so far. I think to give yourself an A you need to win races and we haven’t been able to do that yet. Certainly in the points with all the things that have happened – we crashed out a couple races, like Talladega – we blew up at California. I mean, there’s been some setback and through all that we’re still good in points, so we’re happy so far.”

MONTH OF MAY:“The month of May has been tough on me historically and we got through it half-way decent. We didn’t have the finishes we wanted, but we didn’t have terrible finishes and that goes a long way towards moving forward to the summer months and not having to look over your back. Now we can continue to hone in and work on speed and racing for wins.”

DOVER:“At Dover you just have to race hard. That’s not a track that you can let your guard down at all. You have to be up on the wheel every lap and you have to have to whole package. You can’t be off in any way, shape or form in any area or you’re in trouble.”

BRIAN PATTIE ON MONTH OF MAY: “We had good speed in the month of May. That month is historically a challenge for Clint, so we were pretty happy that we had a top-10 car at Darlington, obviously we had a good car at Talladega and it didn’t work out as we planned there – and we finished top-10 at Charlotte. That’s decent. We’re ahead of where we were last year by quite a bit and that’s the goal. The end result is the same as last year. We have to make the Chase and continue to pay attention to 11th, so that hopefully we lock in before Richmond.”

DOVER:“Clint is fast at Dover. That’s one of his better tracks. June is full of tracks that he’s pretty good at and he likes a lot, so we have to capitalize on that. He had two solid races at Dover last year and we just need to find a tic more speed and execute throughout the event and I’m sure we’ll run really well.”



No right click

Please link the article.