Richard Childress Racing
March 20, 2012
Austin Dillon Event Preview: Royal Purple 300
"I can't wait to get to California. I've heard the track is a little rough, but we'll learn how to adjust our car when we get there."
Event Preview Fact Sheet
No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Impala
Royal Purple 300
March 24, 2012
Auto Club Speedway
Race Notes and Quotes:
This Week's AdvoCare Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway ... Austin Dillon will pilot Chassis No. 105 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Nationwide Series stable in the Royal Purple 300 at Auto Club Speedway. This is a brand new Chevrolet Impala built by the RCR team and will be put through its first paces this weekend.
Dillon at Auto Club ... Dillon has not previously competed at Auto Club Speedway and will make his first laps around the two-mile track during opening practice on Friday.
The Season so Far ... According to NASCAR's Loop Data Statistics, Dillon has an average running position of 10.246 in the season's first four Nationwide Series races, ranking him seventh among all drivers. He has a driver rating of 97.9, ranking him seventh. He is ranked third in the Closers category, improving an average of 3.5 spots in the last 10 percent of each race and is the seventh-fastest driver late in a run. He is ranked seventh in the Fastest Laps Run category with 48 laps so far this season, has the eighth-fastest speed in traffic and the eighth-fastest green-flag speed. Dillon has completed 92.1 percent of his laps in the top 15, ranking him fourth among all drivers and is one of three drivers who have completed 100 percent of laps on the lead lap.
Get to the Points ... Dillon dropped from second to fourth in the Nationwide Series driver championship point standings following a 12th-place finish at Bristol Motor Speedway. He trails his RCR teammate and current point leader, Elliott Sadler, by 30 points and is just one marker shy of Trevor Bayne in third. He currently leads the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings over Cole Whitt.
Flashback ... Dillon started ninth and finished 12th in his first career Nationwide Series appearance at Bristol Motor Speedway last Saturday after spending a majority of the 300-lap race maneuvering a loose-handling No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet around the half-mile short track.
Hometown Proud ... Although they currently live in North Carolina, four members of the No. 3 AdvoCare team consider California their home state, including crew chief Danny Stockman. The 29-year-old was born in Fontana and lived there until the fifth grade when he and his family moved 35 miles north to Yucaipa, Calif. Car chief Robert Strmiska is from Manteca, Calif., mechanic Harley Rouch is from Clovis, Calif., and rear tire changer Jeremy West is from Gardena, Calif.
Meet Dillon ... Dillon will join other Nationwide Series drivers in an autograph session in the Nationwide Series garage area at Auto Club Speedway on Friday, March 23 from 4:30 - 5:30 p.m. P.T.
AUSTIN DILLON QUOTES:
Other than not getting to Victory Lane yet, your start to the season is almost as much as you can ask for as a rookie ...
"It's been a very good start to the season. The No. 3 Chevrolet has been good everywhere we have been. We've had to work quite a bit in practice to get there, and we're learning every race. We're gaining experience as a team and we're really trying to fight that right now so that we can get to Victory Lane. Once we get comfortable getting to the track and get to the point where our setup is correct so that all we have to do is fine-tune the car during practice, we will be much better. It's really cool to come out with three top 10s and a 12th-place finish to start the season. Coming from a multi-car operation and being able to lean on the guys with more experience is big for me. Just watching Elliott Sadler and Kevin Harvick and the experience they have driving the newer Nationwide Series cars that the Nationwide means a lot to be able to use their notes and talk to them."
What kind of transition has it been for you to the Nationwide Series? Has it all been as easy as it looks?
"It's been a good start. You can't ask for better luck going into the races. Things have played out for us the right way. We've put ourselves in a good position to create our luck. If we can keep doing that throughout the season we will have a shot at the end at Homestead-Miami Speedway. That's what we're trying to do. Keep ourselves in a position where we can be there at the end of races and have a shot to win the championship."
You've never race at Auto Club Speedway. Does that worry you?
"I think we'll be good at Auto Club Speedway. The bigger tracks suit me well. It's very similar to Michigan International Speedway and I run really well at Michigan. It's one of my favorite tracks. I can't wait to get to California. I've heard the track is a little rough, but we'll learn how to adjust our car when we get there. We plan to adjust on the car throughout practice and lean on the teammates. I think how big the tracks are you can really move around and find speed and my dirt background plays to the advantage there. I've just always been good at those types of tracks."