Bristol II: Matt Kenseth preview

Race To Chase Heats Up as No. 17 Team Heads to Bristol With only three races remaining before the Chase cutoff, Kenseth and the DEWALT team head to Bristol, Tenn. for one of the most anticipated races of the season under the lights at the ...

Race To Chase Heats Up as No. 17 Team Heads to Bristol

With only three races remaining before the Chase cutoff, Kenseth and the DEWALT team head to Bristol, Tenn. for one of the most anticipated races of the season under the lights at the .533-mile Bristol Motor Speedway.

STEADY DOWN THE STRETCH

While the team has not finished as strong recently as they would like, they have posted four straight top-15 finishes and they have finished 14th or better in five of their last six. In addition, Kenseth ran top five and had one of the fastest cars in the race last week at Michigan, before losing out late to pit strategy.

TAKING THE CHECKERED AT BRISTOL...

Kenseth has two wins in the Sprint Cup Series at Bristol (Aug. of 05 and 06). In addition, Kenseth boasts three wins in the Nationwide Series at Bristol (8/99, 3/01 and 8/06). Only one of Kenseth's five NASCAR wins at Bristol have come in the spring and both of his Cup wins came in the fall under the lights.

FOLLOW THE LEADER...

Kenseth has led 742 Cup laps at Bristol (sixth most among active drivers), including 415 of 500 during his dominating performance there in Aug. 2005. In addition Kenseth has led a total of 1,068 NASCAR laps at Bristol (326 Nationwide laps). Also, Kenseth led 656 Cup laps in a three-race span from Aug. '05 - Aug. '06 - winning twice and finishing third.

INSIDE THE TOP 10 AT BRISTOL...

Kenseth finished both races inside the top 10 at Bristol in 2008, marking the fifth time in nine seasons he has finished both of Bristol's races inside the top 10 ('02, '03, '04, '06 and '08). Two of those five times Kenseth finished both races inside the top five ('03 and '06). The team however struggled at Bristol in the fall, fighting the car's handling before brushing the wall early and settling for a 33rd-place run.

DOMINATING PERFORMANCE

Kenseth won at Bristol from the pole in August of 2005, leading 415 of 500 laps and turning in one of the most dominating performances of his NASCAR career.

DOWN TO THREE; KENSETH FIGHTS TO KEEP PERFECT CHASE RECORD IN TACT

With only three races remaining to the Chase cutoff off point, Kenseth moved up one position to 11th. As the series moves into the 24thrace of the 26-race 'regular' season, Kenseth and the No. 17 team are only 34 points out of ninth and just 32 points ahead of 13thhthe first spot not in the Chase.) In a heated battle that sees only 108 points separate seventh and 13thpositions, Kenseth trails 10thby just 10 points and ninth by 34 points.

MATT KENSETH:

"Bristol has the banking of a track like Daytona, and the size of Martinsville. The configuration really creates super fast short track racing where things happen in a blink of an eye and everyone must be sharp and on their toes. "It takes a great handling car that can run the bottom, and great pit stops for track position - since it is fairly difficult to pass - to put together the winning combination at Bristol.

"You have to realize how long the race is, I guess. There are certain situations you could probably get yourself in or maybe you not be as patient or not be as happy about things, but, really, you just approach it like any other race. We've been a little off at Bristol since we switched to this car, really, and the configuration. I think Carl has maybe won three out of four of them with this car and this track, so we know the stuff is there. We just have to get our stuff running a little better."

FAST FACTS

* Kenseth has won twice at Bristol in the Cup Series (8/'06 and 8/'05).

* Kenseth has seven top-five and 11 top-10 finishes at Bristol.

* Kenseth finished top 10 in both races at Bristol last season.

* Kenseth has finished in the top 10 in both races at Bristol in five of nine seasons.

* Kenseth won from the pole at Bristol in Aug. of 2005, leading 415 of 500 laps during the race.

-credit: rfr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Matt Kenseth