Martin to salute troops in Charlotte

Martin Ready to Salute the Troops in More Ways Than One CONCORD, N.C. (May 21, 2008) -- In the true spirit of Sunday's Memorial Day weekend classic at Lowe's Motor Speedway -- the Coca-Cola 600 -- Mark Martin's No. 8 U.S. Army Chevrolet will...

Martin Ready to Salute the Troops in More Ways Than One

CONCORD, N.C. (May 21, 2008) -- In the true spirit of Sunday's Memorial Day weekend classic at Lowe's Motor Speedway -- the Coca-Cola 600 -- Mark Martin's No. 8 U.S. Army Chevrolet will feature photos of eight soldiers on the outside of the car.

The unique paint scheme is part of the USO Salute the Troops Memorial Day tribute to the armed forces.

"This will be another proud moment to drive the soldiers' car on a weekend that we honor all those great men and women who have put their lives on the line to protect our freedom," said Martin.

Driving the Army Impala SS to Victory Lane in the Memorial Day weekend Sprint Cup race would be the ultimate triumph for Martin and members of the No. 8 Dale Earnhardt Inc. team.

"We would love nothing more than to be able to win the race for all of those men and women in uniform defending our country, and for those who have given their lives in that same fight for freedom. They are the real heroes."

Judging by Martin's past record at Lowe's Motor Speedway along with his recent performances, there's a realistic chance that the No. 8 Army Chevy could find its way to Victory Lane.

Martin has won four Cup races at Lowe's, including the 2002 Coca-Cola 600, NASCAR's longest race of the season. His 17 top-five finishes at the 1.5-mile oval lead all active drivers.

"Lowe's Motor Speedway is probably my favorite track on the circuit," said Martin. "In my opinion, it's the greatest place to race in the world."

Martin is entering this weekend's race with two top-five finishes in his last three point races.

Despite his limited schedule in 2008 and having missed three of 11 events, Martin's two top fives are as many or more than 21 drivers who have competed in all 11 races. His four top-10 finishes are more than 19 drivers who have taken part in every event this season.

-credit: dei

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Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt