Richard Childress Racing
RCR Sprint Cup Series Event Preview: Daytona 500
February 19, 2013
Event Preview Fact Sheets
February 24, 2013
RCR NSCS resume at The World Center of Racing ... Dating back to 1976, Richard Childress Racing has won 10 poles and collected five victories at the most-storied race track on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series circuit. RCR owns two Daytona 500 wins (Dale Earnhardt - 1998, Kevin Harvick - 2007), three Coke Zero 400 trophies (Earnhardt - 1990, 1993 and Harvick - 2010) and 14 qualifying races, including 10-consecutive victories with Earnhardt (1990 - 1999) and Jeff Burton's most recent win in 2011. Harvick became the fourth driver to win back-to-back Sprint Unlimited titles (2009 and 2010) and tallied the eighth win in the event last Saturday night for RCR, which is more than any other NSCS organization. In addition to Harvick's victories, Earnhardt won the Sprint Unlimited five times (1986, '88, '91, '93, and '95).
RCR in the NSCS ... In 2,273 Sprint Cup Series starts dating back to 1969, RCR has amassed 101 wins, 435 top-five finishes, 910 top-10 finishes and 42 pole awards, with an average starting position of 17.9 and an average finishing position of 15.8 among all races contested. RCR has earned six Sprint Cup Series championships with Dale Earnhardt (1986, '87, '90,'91, '93, '94), 14 total championships (five NASCAR Nationwide Series titles, two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series titles and one ARCA Racing Series title) and was the first organization to win titles in NASCAR's three national series.
Interactive RCR ... For up-to-date news and exclusive content, visit RCR's Twitter page - @RCRracing - along with the RCR Sprint Cup Series team Twitter pages - @RCR27PMenard, @RCR29KHarvick, @RCR31JeffBurton and driver Twitter page @KevinHarvick. Information about the 14-time championship winning organization can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RichardChildressRacing and at www.RCRracing.com along with official driver pages - www.facebook.com/PaulMenard27, www.facebook.com/OfficialKevinHarvick and www.facebook.com/OfficialJeffBurton.
Catch the Action ... The 55th running of the Daytona 500 will be televised live Sunday, Feb. 24 beginning at 1 p.m. ET on FOX and will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. The Budweiser Duels at Daytona, two 150-mile qualifying races will take the green flag Thursday, Feb. 21 at 2 p.m. ET and will be broadcast live on SPEED, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
No. 27 PEAK/Menards Chevrolet SS
Event Preview Fact Sheet
This Week's PEAK/Menards Chevrolet ... Paul Menard will pilot chassis No. 409 for both the Budweiser Duel and Daytona 500. This No. 27 Chevrolet SS is a new addition to the Richard Childress Racing stable this season.
Stats for "The Great American Race"... Menard has 11 starts at Daytona International Speedway. His best start of first came in July 2008 and his best finish of sixth came in last year's Daytona 500. The Wisconsin native has completed 1,933 of 1,948 laps attempted at the 2.5-mile superspeedway, leading 37 of them.
PEAK Colors Adorn the Hood of No. 27 Menards Chevrolet ... PEAK's parent company, Old World Industries, LLC, headquartered outside of Chicago in Northbrook, Ill., was founded more than 30 years ago. Today, the company conducts business in more than 52 countries around the Globe and is a symbol of growth and success. Peak Performance Products provides a variety of consumer products for automotive enthusiasts. For more information, visit www.peakauto.com.
Time to Duel ... The Budweiser Duels at Daytona feature two 150-mile races to determine the final starting grid for the Daytona 500. By virtue of qualifying 14th in last Sunday's qualifying session, Menard will start seventh in the second of the two qualifying races on Thursday, Feb. 21.
Let's Get "Sirius"... Be sure to tune in to Sirius XM Radio Channel 90 at 3:15 p.m.ET on Saturday, Feb. 23. Menard will join hosts Dave Moody and Angie Skinner atop the Fan Deck at Daytona International Speedway to chat about what to expect heading into Sunday's Daytona 500.
Don't Miss Your Chance to See Paul Menard at the Chevy Q&A ... Fans can participate in a question-and-answer session with Menard on Saturday, Feb. 23 at 12:30 p.m. ET on the Team Chevy Stage, located in the merchandise area outside of Turn 4.
PAUL MENARD QUOTES:
Paul Menard's Strategy for the Budweiser Duels on Thursday:
"We aren't locked into the "500", so we've got to go race. After watching the Sprint Unlimited Saturday night, the cars seemed to drive pretty well, even though it was really cold out. We are going to be racing the Duels on Thursday in the daylight. I'm not sure what the temperature is going to be, but nonetheless it's going to be a little more of a handful. We've got to keep the nose clean on our PEAK/Menards Chevrolet and just go out and race hard."
Menard's Thoughts on the Daytona 500:
"There are a lot of unknowns going into the Daytona 500. We learned a little bit about how this new Gen-6 car will handle in the draft during testing in January and practice last week. I think it's going to be a handful in the draft. We will get some drivability built into the cars between now and the "500", but it's going to be a wild race. It feels a lot like the old surface before they repaved it. It has a lot less grip and the cars slide around quite a bit, but that what makes for a fun and exciting race."
No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet SS
Event Preview Fact Sheet
This Week's Budweiser Chevrolet at Daytona International Speedway ... Kevin Harvick will pilot Chassis No.407 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable in both the Budweiser Duel and Daytona 500. New to the fleet, this Chevrolet SS will run its first competitive laps at the 2.5-mile superspeedway during Budweiser Speedweeks.
The Champion Returns ... When the 2007 Daytona 500 champion takes the green flag for the 55th running of the "Great American Race", it will mark his 24th points-paying Sprint Cup Series appearance at the 2.5-mile superspeedway. Over the years, the Bakersfield, Calif., native has collected two victories (2007 Daytona 500 and July 2010), five top-five and 10 top-10 finishes. Harvick is also credited with 178 laps led.
Hitching a Ride ... On Wednesday, Feb 20, Harvick and wife DeLana will honor Ormond Beach, Fla., Marine veterans with a home delivery of Daytona 500 tickets via the Budweiser Clydesdale hitch. Jayson and Justin Ryter, 22-year-old twin brothers, both completed four years of active duty in the United States Marine Corps and recently returned home after being honorably discharged to pursue college degrees at Daytona State College. Media interested in attending should contact Annette Randall, director of communications for Elevation Group, at email@example.com.
Draught-ing School ... While on-track at DIS, drivers focus on drafting, but on Wednesday night Harvick will learn about draught beer as he and Budweiser's own Scott Seggi host a private Budweiser Draught School event in Daytona Beach, Fla., for local retailers.
Budweiser Clydesdales ... DIS fans can get a close look at the Budweiser Clydesdales, an enduring symbol of Anheuser-Busch's heritage, tradition and commitment to quality for nearly 80 years. The Budweiser Clydesdales will be stationed in the DIS midway for the remainder of Budweiser Speedweeks. In addition, the hitch, consisting of eight Clydesdales, the famous red, white and gold beer wagon, and two drivers seated next to the hitch's signature mascot Dalmation will take part in a pre-race parade lap prior to the Budweiser Duel on Thursday, Feb. 21 and the Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 24.
Dueling for a Position ... Harvick and the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet team posted the 25th-fastest lap in Daytona 500 qualifying, earning the team a 13th-place starting spot in the first Budweiser Duel 150 race on Thursday, Feb. 21. SPEED will provide live television coverage of the twin qualifying races starting at 2 p.m. Eastern Time.
You've Got Questions, He's Got Answers ... Harvick will participate in a fan question-and-answer session prior to the start of the Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 24 at 9:40 a.m. ET at the Team Chevy Stage.
2012 Race Rewind ... Harvick and the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet team finished seventh in the 54th running of the Daytona 500 after being delayed one day by rain and a fire that erupted as a car made contact with a jet dryer.
KEVIN HARVICK QUOTE:
Kevin Harvick discusses the unknowns heading into the Daytona 500.
"I think you have to keep an open mind about things. You have to be ready for anything as we go through the week. Budweiser Speedweeks is always a little bit different than every other race, because the week kind of evolves from start to finish. I've been through weeks where we've wrecked anything in sight, and I've been through weeks where you've won races and been successful through the week. You have to stay calm and not get too high on the highs or too low on the lows and be ready for Sunday."
Kevin Harvick shares what he has learned about restrictor-plate racing throughout the years.
"The biggest thing is you have to try and be around at the end. We have been successful with varying strategies as we've gone through the years, especially running in the back. I think the safest place to be, especially right now, is running up front, to be able to understand the cars and you wind up with a little more experience on when to make the move. We're going to race hard, and see where we fall in the end and hopefully miss the wrecks."
No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS
Event Preview Fact Sheet
This week's No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet ... Jeff Burton will race chassis No. 296 in the second Budweiser Duel and Daytona 500. This chassis was utilized last season in the Daytona 500 by Burton and saw action at multiple restrictor-plate events during the 2010 and 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series seasons with driver Clint Bowyer.
Burton at "The World Center of Racing" ... Burton's has 38 starts at Daytona International Speedway with one win (July 2000), nine top-five and 11 top-10 finishes. Burton also scored the pole position for the 2006 Daytona 500 and has led 145 laps at the historic 2.5-mile superspeedway.
Featured Caterpillar Dealers ... Pon CAT, Ring Power CAT and Toromont CAT will be featured on the deck lid of the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet this weekend in the Daytona 500.
• Pon CAT is the Dutch, Danish, Norwegian and Swedish CAT dealer. Pon Equipment and Pon Power focus on the marketing, sales, rental and distribution of CAT earthmoving equipment, CAT marine engines, generators, emergency power generators and diesel engines for various industrial applications. For more information, visit www.pon-cat.com.
• Ring Power CAT is the Central and Northeast Florida Caterpillar dealer, headquartered in St. Augustine, Fla. Ring Power is comprised of eight divisions and has 50 years of experience selling, servicing and supporting Caterpillar and allied equipment. Additional information about the Ring Power organization, its products, services and employment opportunities can be found on the Internet at www.ringpower.com.
• Toromont CAT is your Canadian Caterpillar dealer in Ontario, Manitoba, Nunavut, Newfoundland and Eastern Labrador. Toromont offers a complete line of Caterpillar equipment. Toromont also provides products for electric power generation, gas, marine, and industrial engines, as well as used equipment, rental equipment, and supplies all parts and service needs. For more information, visit www.toromont.com.
Speedweeks Public Appearances ... Burton will participate in two different question-&-answer sessions at Daytona International Speedway this week. The first will take place at the Team Chevy Stage on Thursday, Feb. 21 at 11 a.m. ET and the second on Sunday, Feb. 24 at 8:40 a.m. ET in the Sprint FANZONE located in the DIS infield.
Before the main event ... The Budweiser Duels at Daytona feature two 150-mile races which will determine the final starting grid for the Daytona 500. By virtue of qualifying 20th in last Sunday's Daytona 500 qualifying session, Burton will start 10th in the second race on Thursday, Feb. 21.
New faces in 2013 ... Luke Lambert returns to the No. 31 pitbox in Sprint Cup Series competition after spending 17 races as interim crew chief of the No. 31 team to finish the 2011 season. Most recently, Lambert served as crew chief on the No. 2 Chevrolet in the NASCAR Nationwide Series leading driver Elliott Sadler to four wins, four pole awards, 15 top-five and 24 top-10 finishes en route to a second-place finish in driver championship point standings. Veteran Keith Barnwell will also join the No. 31 team as Burton's primary spotter for the 2013 season.
Restrictor-plate ringer ... Over the past five points-paying restrictor-plate events at Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway, Burton has tallied five consecutive top-10 finishes including a runner-up effort in the Coke Zero 400 at DIS last July.
JEFF BURTON QUOTE:
How big is the Daytona 500 for you as a driver?
"We've been close to winning so many restrictor-plate races lately at Daytona (International Speedway) and Talladega (Superspeedway) the last few years. We actually came really close here at Daytona last July and finished second. The Daytona 500 is huge. To win the Daytona 500 after my brother (Ward) won it in 2002 would be a really cool family feat. With our children working up through the racing ranks, if we could build a family legacy of winning the Daytona 500, that would be really special."
No. 33 Honey Nut Cheerios Chevrolet SS
Event Preview Fact Sheet
This Week's Honey Nut Cheerios Chevrolet at Daytona International Speedway ... Austin Dillon will pilot Chassis No. 334 in the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. This is a new addition to the RCR fleet that is being utilized for the first time this week.
Dillon at Daytona ... Although this year's Daytona 500 marks Dillon's first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series attempt at DIS, the Welcome, N.C., driver has a pair of top-five finishes at the 2.5-mile restrictor-plate track in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. He finished fifth in February 2012 and fourth in July 2012. In addition, He has two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at the track with a best finish of 20th in 2011.
Welcome, Buzz ... Dillon's pal Buzz, the official SpokesBee of Honey Nut Cheerios, will be featured on the hood of the No. 33 Chevrolet for the Great American Race. This marks the fifth year of Richard Childress Racing's partnership with General Mills, which is a major associate sponsor throughout the year in the Sprint Cup Series on the No. 31 Cheerios Chevrolet and driver Jeff Burton. Cheerios, America's No.1 cereal franchise, debuted in 1941 as Cheerioats. The nation's first ready-to-eat oat cereal has since become one of the most trusted and recognized brands in America. In fact, one of every eight boxes of cereal sold in America is a box of Cheerios. General Mills' popular franchise includes Cheerios, Honey Nut Cheerios, Multi Grain Cheerios, Multi Grain Cheerios, Peanut Butter Cheerios, Chocolate Cheerios, Frosted Cheerios, Apple Cinnamon Cheerios, Cinnamon Burst Cheerios, Fruity Cheerios, Dulce de Leche Cheerios, Yogurt Burst Cheerios and Banana Nut Cheerios.
Dillon's DRIVE4COPD ... Dillon's paternal grandfather, Stan Dillon, passed away following a battle with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease (COPD) in May 2012, sparking Dillon to partner with the COPD foundation to encourage all Americans aged 35 or older to log onto www.drive4copd.org/screener to take a brief, five-question screener to see if they might be at risk for COPD, a serious and progressive lung disease that is the third leading cause of death of Americans.If the screener indicates risk, patients are encouraged to take the next step and speak with their healthcare professional or call the C.O.P.D. Information Line (1-866-316-2673) to discuss what their score may mean. Because COPD is a progressive disease that causes irreversible lung damage, early diagnosis and disease management are critical to helping patients breathe better in the future.
Time to Duel ... The Budweiser Duels at Daytona feature two 150-mile races from which the majority of the final starting grid for the Daytona 500 will be set. By virtue of qualifying 16th in last Sunday's qualifying session, Dillon will start eighth in the second of the two qualifying races on Thursday, Feb. 21.
Double Duty ... In addition to competing at Daytona International Speedway in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series this weekend, Dillon is scheduled to drive the No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet in the NASCAR Nationwide Series race on Saturday, Feb. 23. The Daytona Nationwide Series race kicks off a season-long campaign in which Dillon plans to battle for the 2013 Driver's Title after earning Rookie-of-the-Year honors and finishing third in the final Driver's Championship Point Standings in 2012. The DRIVE4COPD300 is live on ESPN at 1 p.m. ET on Saturday.
Off Season ... Dillon has spent much of the off season hunting throughout the U.S., traveling to locations such as Texas, Kansas, Georgia and Montana to hunt with friends and family members.
AUSTIN DILLON QUOTES:
This will be your first Daytona 500. What does that mean to you?
"The prestige that this race holds and being out here and being able to watch some of RCR's guys go to Victory Lane throughout the years and be in Victory Lane to celebrate with them has really helped me appreciate the race and made me even more excited to participate myself. It's just awesome to be able to fire the engine and try and make this race. It's just a great opportunity and I can't wait until Sunday comes."
What did you learn during NASCAR Sprint Cup Series testing in January that might help you here at Daytona International Speedway for the Daytona 500 this weekend?
"Drafting. It was pretty good to be able to get out there and run near the other drivers and see what the cars handled like. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series cars didn't handle as well as the NASCAR Nationwide Series cars. There's just so much more power and less downforce. We're out there and it's going to be wild. You have to be able to be there at the end to make something happen. I think that's what all of these races come down to. I think we are going to have a shot just like anybody else once we get into the race."