Bristol: Earnhardt Ganassi Racing preview

NOTES Martin Truex Jr. and No. 1 Bass Pro Shops®/Tracker Boats Team Bristol Stats: Truex will be making his seventh NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) start at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. His best start was 11th, in this race last year.

NOTES

Martin Truex Jr. and No. 1 Bass Pro Shops®/Tracker Boats Team

Bristol Stats: Truex will be making his seventh NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) start at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. His best start was 11th, in this race last year. His best finish of 11th came in August of 2007.

Last Week: Truex and the No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats team finished 10th two weeks ago at Atlanta Motor Speedway. It was Truex's first top-10 finish this season. He is currently 19th in 2009 NSCS points.

Can I Have Your Autograph?: Truex will be meeting fans and signing autographs at the Bass Pro Shops souvenir rig on Saturday from 2:00 pm -- 2:30 pm. The souvenir hauler will be located in the fan zone outside the track.

Aric Almirola and No. 8 Champion® Team

Good Ole Rocky Top: Almirola will be making his third NSCS start at Bristol Motor Speedway when he takes the green flag in this weekend's Food City 500. In such a young career he has made quite a splash at the "World's Fastest Half-Mile." He brought home an eighth place finish in his first NSCS start in 2008, which occurred at Bristol Motor Speedway. He followed this performance with a 13th place finish in the night race.

Finishing strong in Atlanta: Almirola and the No. 8 Cub Cadet team were able to work through some handling issues at Atlanta. This hard work ensured a good finish for the team, bringing the car home in 21st place. The finish helped move the team closer to a coveted spot inside the top-35 in owner's points heading into the all important fifth race at Bristol.

A Quarter-Century Old!: Driver, Aric Almirola celebrated his 25th Birthday this past weekend. The young driver certainly enjoyed the fact that he was able to do this from his home in North Carolina as it was the first off-weekend for the NSCS.

So here's to you Ole Tennessee, Our Alma Mater true: Crew Chief Doug Randolph, a native of Morristown, Tennessee (located half-way between Knoxville and Bristol) is a 1988 graduate of The University of Tennessee. Randolph received his degree in Wildlife and Fisheries from the school famous for football, the Vol Navy, and a Bluetick Coonhound that roams the sidelines of every Vol sporting event. Don't be surprised to see some Vol Orange on the No. 8 pit box this weekend as the team takes to the track.

Juan Pablo Montoya and No. 42 Target Team

Bristol History: Montoya will be making his fifth NSCS start at Bristol Motor Speedway on Sunday. He earned the outside pole in Fall 2007 in just his second attempt at the .533-mile track, and went on to finish 17th on the lead lap. In this race last year, he scored his best NSCS finish to date at the track, driving his No. 42 to a 15th-place finish.

Meet Montoya: Montoya will be making an appearance at the TUMS display on Sunday in the Fan Zone at Bristol Motor Speedway. Montoya will sign for fans from 9:35 to 10:00 a.m. Fans are encouraged to stop by prior to the event to receive a ticket. Tickets are limited.

Happy Birthday: The Target team will celebrate two birthdays this weekend. Tire-carrier Eric Bilyeu will celebrate his 33rd birthday on Sunday, March 22 and the No. 42 Gasman and mechanic, Mike "Mongo" Bodick will turn 40-years-old on Sunday as well.

Local natives: Cousins Heath Silver and Andy Silver both call Bristol their home track, as they are from the Asheville area. Heath is the Car Chief of the Target Chevrolet and Andy is a mechanic on the team during the race weekend.

Tennessean: Tony Glover--a Kingsport, Tenn., native--is a team manager at the Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Concord, N.C. race shop. He has been in racing for 36 years and throughout his career Glover has built the reputation as one of the top mechanical minds in motorsports. In addition, Glover has a knack for developing drivers and winning big races. Under his guidance, Ernie Irvan, Sterling Marlin and Joe Nemechek captured their first NASCAR Sprint Cup wins.

In the Points: Montoya now stands 21st in the NASCAR Driver Point Standings, 226 points behind leader Jeff Gordon.

Montoya:

"I like Bristol a lot. Of all the places I have ever raced, when someone asks me what track they need to go to I always tell them Bristol. As a driver you are up on the wheel all the time and you are always racing no matter where you are on the track."

CHASSIS INFO

No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet (NSCS): Kevin "Bono" Manion has decided to bring chassis #071. This chassis was last used in the season finale at Homestead Miami Speedway last year. Truex finished 10th in that event.

No. 8 Champion Chevrolet (NSCS): The No. 8 team will bring chassis number #38 to the "World's Fastest Half-Mile" Bristol Motor Speedway.

No. 42 Target Chevrolet (NSCS): Chassis #802. Pattie and the No. 42 team are brining chassis #802 to Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. This chassis ran twice last year by the 42 team (Pocono- Aug, Las Vegas- February).

-credit: egr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing , Chip Ganassi Racing