Martinsville: Dale Jarrett preview

UPS Team Preps New Car for Martinsville UPS Racing Team Notes of Interest * Dale Jarrett is a former Martinsville Speedway winner, visiting victory lane at the half-mile track in April 2001. He finished a close second to winner Ricky ...

UPS Team Preps New Car for Martinsville

UPS Racing Team Notes of Interest

* Dale Jarrett is a former Martinsville Speedway winner, visiting victory lane at the half-mile track in April 2001. He finished a close second to winner Ricky Craven at the track's second event in 2001.

* In his last eight starts during the spring race at Martinsville Speedway Jarrett has only one finish outside the top 14 and that was a 20th-place finish in 2003.

* In preparation for the DirecTV 500 at Martinsville the UPS Team spent Monday at Caraway Speedway in Asheboro, N.C., shaking down the car Jarrett will race this weekend.

Jarrett Discusses Racing at Martinsville Speedway

Other than a good handling race car, what is the most important factor for having a good day at Martinsville?

"If I had to choose one other than a car that handles well it would probably be track position and not losing any once you've moved up in the running order. With the aerodynamics being the way they are today the same could be said for just about anywhere but at Martinsville it is of the utmost importance. We've had to start pretty far back in the running order our last several visits here so you already have a lot to overcome if you don't qualify as well as you might like. With a little patience, a decent car and good pit stops you can make up some of that lost ground but it is definitely tough. Once you've been able to move up say five to eight spots you certainly don't want to lose it whether it's a matter of getting kicked out of the preferred groove or on pit road so there's a lot of weight put on the shoulders of our pit crews this weekend."

How tough is it to navigate the pit road at Martinsville?

"Yeah, I was just getting ready to add that the pit road at Martinsville isn't the easiest place to take advantage of a good pit stop. It's one continuous pit road at Martinsville and it is tight getting on and off. Even if you are able to get out quicker than some of the guys running ahead, you have to be careful not to damage the car on pit road. There's very little real estate there and we're all going for the same portion of it so that's another issue that can become a factor in who does or doesn't have success at Martinsville."

Crew chief Slugger Labbe Discusses Preparations for Martinsville Speedway

How did the test at Caraway Speedway go on Monday?

"It went well. We wanted to go there because we have a new race car so we could get some laps on the car and get a head start for this weekend. The weather isn't looking good for Friday and Saturday in Martinsville so it was important for us to go there and get some laps in especially with a new race car."

Does this race place more pressure on the pit crew because track position is so crucial?

"It is going to be important to make good decisions in the pits and to not lose any ground there but I think a good pit crew has to have that same outlook regardless of whether it's Martinsville where there isn't a lot of room on pit road or Daytona where you have more room to get in and get out. I impress on our pit guys every week regardless of whether we're running 30th or in the top 10 that they need to perform at top level on every stop. Martinsville is a different beast because track position is so important and you sure don't want to lose any position gains so we'll obviously be working extra hard on that this week."

-ryr-

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Laps

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Starts

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Led

St

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DNFs

Earnings

Spring Race

20

1

5

8

0

0

8,914/9,856

6

20.2

14.1

2

903,373

Fall Race

19

0

4

9

0

0

8,666/9,500

138

17.7

15.9

2

789,530

Totals

39

1

9

17

0

0

17,580/19,356

144

18.9

15.0

4

1,692,903

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Dale Jarrett , Ricky Craven