Bristol: Casey Mears preview

Casey Mears and No. 41 Target Dodge Target Team Facts: * Atop the box: Crew chief Jimmy Elledge has visited victory lane three times at Bristol Motor Speedway in his NASCAR career -- twice with Dale Earnhardt and once...

Casey Mears and No. 41 Target Dodge

Target Team Facts:

* Atop the box: Crew chief Jimmy Elledge has visited victory lane three times at Bristol Motor Speedway in his NASCAR career -- twice with Dale Earnhardt and once with Mark Martin.

* Chassis: Elledge and the team will be taking chassis #408 this weekend to Bristol Motor Speedway. This is a new chassis in the No. 41 stable, as is the back up car, and will be hitting the track for the first time this weekend.

* Bristol Facts: Mears and the Target Team are looking for their first top-10 finish at the .533-mile oval in Bristol. Mears' best finish at the short track in four starts is 21st.

The team had scheduled a test at the track to prepare Mears for the Food City 500, but inclement weather forced them to cancel the session.

* Standings: Mears and the No. 41 Target Team slipped two spots in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup standings after their 19th-place finish at Atlanta. The team currently sits 17th, 41 points out of 10th and 246 points behind leader Jimmy Johnson.

Casey Mears Quotes:

On Bristol..."Bristol is a really tough track for me," said Mears. "I think I learned a lot last year that should help me this weekend. We've had pretty good cars, but last fall I punctured the radiator and just had to ride around for most of the race. That is when I actually learned the most about the track. I love the track and the race, but I just need to improve my finishes."

Jimmy Elledge Quotes:

On Bristol... "In order for Casey and this team to have a good run, we need to qualify up front and stay out of trouble. You don't want to be stuck in the middle of the pack, and that's where we've been in all four races we've run at Bristol.

"Our short-track program is our biggest limitation in making the Chase at the end of the season. We've put a ton of emphasis this year on this program, and we know how important it is to turn it around. We have a solid handle on the intermediate tracks and even the superspeedways, but we struggle at places like Bristol and Martinsville. Casey is a much more disciplined driver than he was a year ago, and this will be a good test to see how far he's come. I think we are going to be pretty good on Sunday."

-cgr-

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Casey Mears , Mark Martin