Loudon: Casey Mears preview

Casey Mears and No. 41 Target Dodge Target Team Facts: * Championship Standings: Casey Mears and the Target Team held onto the 16th spot in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup championship after their 15th-place finish at Chicagoland...

Casey Mears and No. 41 Target Dodge

Target Team Facts:

* Championship Standings: Casey Mears and the Target Team held onto the 16th spot in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup championship after their 15th-place finish at Chicagoland Speedway. Mears currently sits 175 points out of the NASCAR Top 10.

* Chassis: Crew chief Jimmy Elledge and the Target Team are bringing chassis #308 to Loudon. Mears drove this chassis at Darlington and Dover already this season and is looking for his first top 10 in this No. 41 Target Dodge.

* Loudon: Mears and the Target Team finished 16th and 17th in the two races held at New Hampshire International Speedway in 2003. They were his second and third-best finishes in his rookie year behind his 15th-place effort at Las Vegas.

* Weekend Action: Aside from driving the No. 41 Target Dodge in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race on Sunday, Mears will be making his second appearance in the NASCAR Busch Series this season. He will pilot the No. 1 Dodge for the Siemens 200 on Saturday.

* Still Improving: Mears and the Target Team have improved their finishing average from 29th in 2003 to 18th this season. The team has also exceeded their 2003 finishes in 14 of the 18 corresponding races this season.

Casey Mears Quotes:

On Loudon... "I am pretty confident heading into Loudon," said Mears. "Even though we were not great at this track last year, it was still two of our best finishes in the Target Dodge. It was the one track I felt like we were more competitive at than most last year. We are bringing a different car, so we'll have some challenges. But Sterling (Marlin) and the No. 40 team tested there so we'll have some good notes to work off of this weekend.

"In order for us to have a shot at the NASCAR Top 10, we have to start taking advantage of our good days. Chicago was extremely disappointing because we had a top five and maybe even a top three car, but had to pit because someone's tear off covered up the grill on the Target Dodge. Those are things that are out of our control, but they are hurting our finishes."

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Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Casey Mears