Martinville II: Matt Kenseth preview

FAST FACTS *Since entering the Cup Series in 2000, Matt Kenseth has completed the second most laps of any Cup driver at Martinsville in the past 15 Cup races (7,395 of 7,500). *Kenseth's No. 17 Ford will run the last R+L Carriers paint scheme...

FAST FACTS

*Since entering the Cup Series in 2000, Matt Kenseth has completed the second most laps of any Cup driver at Martinsville in the past 15 Cup races (7,395 of 7,500).

*Kenseth's No. 17 Ford will run the last R+L Carriers paint scheme for 2007 this weekend. In the previous three outings with R+L Carriers on the hood, Kenseth has finished 12th at Charlotte in May, eighth in Daytona in July, and seventh at Fontana in September.

*Kenseth Chase history at Martinsville Speedway:

*Kenseth's average finish during the Chase at Martinsville is 13.0; ranking fifth among all Chase tracks. *What a difference a year makes -- Last season, Kenseth entered Martinsville only 45 points out of first and exited with a 36-point lead in the Championship Standings. This season, Kenseth has endured one of the worst four-race streaks in his career and currently sits 12th, 442 points out of first.

Kenseth on racing at Martinsville Speedway:
"Well, at some point, our luck has got to change, so maybe it'll be this weekend at Martinsville which is a track I usually dread racing at. To me, and I've said this a lot, Martinsville reminds me of racing around two light polls in some mall parking lot. There's very little room to race, it's slow and just real tight quarters. Forget passing on the outside, I think everyone saw that back in the spring when the second-place car, which was a good bit faster at the time, couldn't get around the leader for the last 20 laps or so. To me, there's nothing fun about that.

"We need to just try and focus on getting a solid finish. The last month has been real tough for everyone on the team. They work so hard and for one reason or the other we haven't been able to finish races here lately. It's something we aren't really used to, but everybody goes through these stretches. The promising sign is that our cars have improved a great deal from where we were two months ago and our pit crew is back doing the things they always do and picking up positions on pit road. We just need to have an uneventful day for a change and bring home a good finish."

Crew Chief Robbie Reiser on racing at Martinsville Speedway:
"We feel pretty confident in the COT we're taking this weekend. It's run more than any of our COTs and it's been pretty good on the flat tracks. Hopefully, it'll be as good this weekend if not better. Martinsville is all about how good we can get the car to turn in the center, pretty much the same philosophy as everywhere else, so that Matt can get on the gas as quickly as possible. You also have to have a good brake package and we've done a lot of work over the past year to improve what we take to the track.

"This team doesn't have any quit in them. We're realist and we know what we can and can't do, but for right now, all we're concerned with is this weekend at Martinsville, trying to win the race or get the best finish we can. Our performance has actually been pretty good over the past four races, but we just don't have anything to show for it. But, there's not a thing we can do about that now. All we can do is go forward and try to do the best we can and maybe win a couple races here at the end of the season."

-credit: rfr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Matt Kenseth