UPS Team Looks for Charlotte Success
MOORESVILLE, N.C., (October 11, 2005) ----- It's home time for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series as teams prepare for the UAW-GM Quality 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway (LMS) in Concord, N.C. Dale Jarrett and the UPS Team finished eighth at Charlotte during the Coca-Cola 600 in May.
"We had a pretty good race car in May, we just didn't have a lot of things go our way," Jarrett said of the Coca-Cola 600. "We had a wheel come loose and we actually were down a lap. Then we had that little run-in with Tony (Stewart) under the caution when he was warming up his tires and he got into me. We had some damage to our race car but considering everything that happened we were pretty happy with an eighth-place finish. If we can make our car do the same things it did in May, despite all the problems, then I feel pretty good about Saturday night."
Jarrett finished sixth in the 2004 UAW-GM Quality 500 after starting from deep in the field in 39th place.
Jarrett Discusses Racing at Lowe's Motor Speedway
What are your thoughts on the work that has been done to the track since May?
"I haven't even seen the track but it should be interesting given what has happened there during testing and what I have heard about it. It sounds like it is going to be very fast and we'll probably have a new qualifying record for sure. Obviously, the staff at Charlotte had their hearts in the right place to try to make the track better. So they are searching and trying to improve the racing. As for what we'll see in the race, it's hard to say. When we were here in May, it was a pretty long night with all the wrecks, but I don't know that you can blame that on the track. If everyone uses their heads, and uses a little patience, then we could be in for a very good race. But, seeing as how that hasn't happened a lot this year, we could be in for a long night."
What makes this race different from the May race other than the length of the event?
"Well, for starters, we are going to be starting under the same conditions. The Coke 600 starts in the late afternoon so you have to prepare to adjust for the change to night. This race will be starting probably right at nightfall so that helps some as far as building in adjustability. Other than that, a lot of the same things come into play. It's about using your speed when you need to, especially with the speeds that we're running right now. You still need to take care of the equipment and even though it's 100 miles less, it is still a long, hard race at 500 miles. Our goal is to get our car to where we're reasonably fast at the beginning of a run and not fall off a lot during the course of a long run."
Is this a nice break to be home for this weekend's race?
"Oh most definitely. It's more for the guys on these race teams than it is for the drivers, not that I'm not looking forward to sleeping in my own bed for a race weekend. But, we're on a pretty long stretch of races. Most of the guys haven't spent an entire weekend in their own homes since before Indianapolis. We have five more races after this weekend's race, and this is really a chance for everyone to hopefully enjoy a little family time and to recharge their batteries for these last five weekends. A lot of the guys are able to bring their wives, families, or significant other to the race too. As for me, personally, I'm looking forward to being able to catch some of the kids' activities. I think I'm going to be able to catch Zach's ball game Saturday before I have to leave for the race track so I'm looking forward to that as well."
Notes of Interest
* In 37 career starts at LMS, Jarrett has posted 18 top-10 finishes. Part of those 18 top-10 finishes are 11 top-five finishes including three wins. Jarrett won the Coca-Cola 600 in 1996 and he has posted wins in the UAW-GM Quality 500 twice, winning that event in 1994 and 1997.
* Car owner Robert Yates will be inducted into the North Carolina Auto Racing Hall of Fame during a ceremony on Wednesday, Oct. 12th in Mooresville, N.C. Yates is one of three individuals that will be inducted that evening.
* Two NASCAR legends will sign autographs at Dale Jarrett, Inc., in Hickory, N.C., this Friday, Oct. 14th from 1 to 3 p.m. EDT. Richard Petty and Ned Jarrett will sign autographs for the first 300 fans. Armbands will be distributed beginning at 8:30 a.m. on Friday morning. More information is available at www.dalejarrett.com.
Chassis 61 is the car Jarrett is racing this weekend at Charlotte. This is a brand new car for the UPS Team. It was one of the cars the team tested while at Kentucky Speedway prior to last weekend's race at Kansas.