Daytona Shootout: Dave Blaney preview

* Blaney's No. 22 Camry...The Caterpillar Racing team plans to utilize chassis No. 27 for the Budweiser Shootout and chassis No. 35 for the 50th running of the Daytona 500 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. Both of these cars were...

* Blaney's No. 22 Camry...The Caterpillar Racing team plans to utilize chassis No. 27 for the Budweiser Shootout and chassis No. 35 for the 50th running of the Daytona 500 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. Both of these cars were tested during the second testing session at the track in January.

* A New Face...Phil Moran has stepped into the position of car chief for the Caterpillar Racing team. Moran, a native of Colchester, Conn., was previously the Cup shop foreman at BDR. Jeremy Milless has also joined the team and will serve in the engineer position. Milless comes to BDR from the open wheel ranks. The remainder of the team remains the same as last year.

* What's the Deal?...The No. 22 Bill Davis Racing team will start the year with a new paint scheme for the Budweiser Shootout. The Cat Dealers logo will adorn the Toyota Camry for that event. The "Cat Dealers" car for the Budweiser Shootout salutes the U.S. and Canadian dealers and their longtime support of the Cat Racing program. This North American dealer network -- one of the company's most important competitive advantages -- serves all equipment, service, and financing needs for customers. Many of the independent dealers in this extensive network have relationships with their customers that span at least two generations. The names of all U.S. and Canadian Cat dealers will adorn the trunk lid of the No. 22 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car for this special event.

* Blaney's Career Stats...Dave Blaney will make his 269th career Sprint Cup Series start when the green flag waves for the 500-mile event Sunday afternoon. He made his first career Cup Series start in October 1992 at [Rockingham] North Carolina Speedway and finished 27th after qualifying 31st for his first Cup Series start in Daytona Beach in 2000. Like this weekend, Blaney was aboard a Bill Davis Racing-owned machine.

* Blaney at Daytona...Blaney has made 16 Cup Series starts at the 2.5-mile superspeedway during his career, starting as high as fourth (2000) and finishing as high as 14th (2005). He has scored three top-15 finishes and eight top-25 finishes in Cup Series competition at Daytona.

* BDR at DIS...Competitors driving Bill Davis Racing-owned cars have been racing at Daytona International Speedway since 1993 and have made 39 starts. Those drivers have posted three top-five finishes, nine top-10 finishes and have completed 6,479 of 6,826 possible laps (94.9 percent). Additionally, the team won the 2002 Daytona 500.

* Shootout Stats...Blaney's only appearance in the Bud Shootout came in 2004 after he won the pole at North Carolina Speedway the previous season. Blaney started the event in the fourth spot, led three laps and was involved in an accident. He was eventually credited with a 19th-place finish.

* Break out the Sharpies...Look for Blaney to stop by the Caterpillar/Toyota Racing merchandise hauler Sunday, Feb. 17 to sign autographs at 11 a.m.

Blaney's Thoughts on Daytona..."We've been looking forward to getting back to Daytona ever since we left the test last month. Our cars were really good while we were there. The Toyotas were strong, and all the pieces to our restrictor plate program are working well together -- the engine program, the cars and the team. As long as you can be up front, stay in the draft and run around everyone else, you will be in a good place, and we felt that way when the test was over. Hopefully, those things will remain the same when we get back. This Cat team has worked really hard during the off season, and we'd like to get ourselves a good finish so we start off strong and don't dig ourselves a hole in the points right off the bat and have to worry about that like we did last year. If we can stay out of trouble, there's no reason to think we won't come away with a really good finish in the 500 and start our season off on the right foot."

-credit: bdr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Dave Blaney
Teams Bill Davis Racing , Toyota Racing