Daytona II: Ryan Newman preview

Newman Looking to Score Independence Day Win in Army Entry DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 1, 2009) --Ryan Newman says his mission for Saturday night's Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway is challenging, but reachable, as...

Newman Looking to Score Independence Day Win in Army Entry

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 1, 2009) --Ryan Newman says his mission for Saturday night's Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway is challenging, but reachable, as he takes immense pride piloting the U.S. Army entry on Independence Day.

"We wanted to put the U.S. Army/Haas Automation Chevy in Victory Lane on Memorial Day in Charlotte, but came up a little short by finishing second," noted Newman. "Saturday's race is another opportunity to give our soldiers a special win on a special holiday."

Newman has firsthand experience about what it takes to win at the famed 2.5-mile oval. He scored a historic victory at the 2008Daytona 500, which was the 50th anniversary of NASCAR's most prestigious race.

"We have something to prove after an unsettling experience at this year's Daytona 500," said Newman. "It was one of those weeks where if something could go wrong, it did go wrong. Leading up to the race we were involved in two accidents and had a blown engine. During the race we had an early pit road issue that put us two laps down. But that's the past. Our focus right now is to get back running in the top 10 and top five."

Though he is seventh in points with nine races remaining before the top-12 drivers battle it out for the Sprint Cup championship, Newman knows he is by no means secured for a Chase berth.

"Nothing is certain -- there are still plenty of races and plenty of points remaining," offered Newman.

After impressive performances that saw Newman collect six straight top-10s, five of which were top-fives,the streak took a turn in the last three races with finishes of 23rd (Michigan), 17th (Sonoma) and 29th (New Hampshire).

"We had some things happen in those races that prevented us from having better finishes," explained Newman. "This is the same Stewart-Haas team and same driver that put together those streaks of top 10s and top fives. We know we're capable of not only contending, but also winning. A Fourth of July fireworks celebration with the Army car in Victory Lane would be awesome."

Newman's career record at Daytona International Speedway includes: 15 starts, one win, two top-fives and three top-10s, all coming in the 500. His best finish at the summer Daytona race was 11th in 2006.

-credit: shr

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Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Ryan Newman