Michigan: Matt Kenseth preview

Kenseth Looks to Build on Michigan Success After a strong run but disappointing finish at Pocono last weekend, Kenseth and the No. 17 team will look to continue their successful ways this weekend at Michigan International Speedway, where Kenseth...

Kenseth Looks to Build on Michigan Success

After a strong run but disappointing finish at Pocono last weekend, Kenseth and the No. 17 team will look to continue their successful ways this weekend at Michigan International Speedway, where Kenseth has been solid in virtually all 19 starts at the two-mile track.

KENSETH AT MICHIGAN

Michigan is one of Kenseth's most successful tracks on the NASCAR circuit. In 19 races at the two-mile oval he boasts an impressive 9.1 average finish, having won twice and scored nine top-five and 13 top-10 finishes (68 percent).

MICHIGAN MOMENTUM

Kenseth comes into this week's race at Michigan, having scored three straight top-five finishes at MIS. In fact, the Cambridge, Wis., native has finished top five in four of the last five and six of the last eight at Michigan.

LAST SEASON

Kenseth finished both races at MIS inside the top 10 in 2008, marking the second time in nine years and the second time in the last four seasons he has accomplished that feat. His 4.0 average finish is the second best yearly average of his career there. In nine seasons he has posted top 10 finishes in both outings at MIS on four occasions and he has averaged better than better than 10th in both races on seven of nine occasions.

KENSETH SHINES ON TWO-MILE OVALS

Since his first full season Sprint Cup racing in 2000, nobody has been better on the two-miles tracks than Kenseth. In fact, since 2000 Kenseth leads all drivers in wins (5), top fives (16) and top 10's (24). His 9.265 average finish in that nine-year span is second amongst all drivers. In addition his five wins on the two-mile tracks ties Jeff Gordon for seventh all time, despite the fact that he has started 16 less races in that time span.

BLACK AND GOLD OF CARHARTT ON THE CAR

The No. 17 Ford Fusion will again carry Carhartt paint scheme this weekend at Michigan. Kenseth took the checkered flag at California in the last Carhartt race. Carhartt will serve as the primary two more times this season at New Hampshire in Sept. and Charlotte in Oct.

MATT KENSETH...

"Michigan is for sure one of my favorite tracks. It's up in the Midwest so it's nice to go there and we've also had some really good cars there in the past. Like any track, success there is about having a good car. It's not a super difficult track to drive if you have a car that handles. It's a big old sweeping track with plenty of room to pass. If you can get your car to handle the right way, you can have a lot of fun racing there.

"We've been getting better each week as a team. We had a strong run going last week and ended up losing out on fuel milage there at the end. The finish was frustrating, but we have to look at the bigger picture and hope to keep building on that for this weekend."

FAST FACTS

* Kenseth boasts an impressive 9.1 average finish in 19 outings at MIS.

* Kenseth has finished top five in the last three races at Michigan.

* Kenseth has top-five finishes in four of his last five and six of his last eight at MIS.

* Kenseth finished both races at MIS in 2008 inside the top five, including a third-place finish last spring when he led 41 laps and had the car to beat, before losing out on fuel mileage

* Kenseth leads all drivers in wins, top fives and top 10's on two-mile tracks since 2000.

-credit: rfr

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Matt Kenseth
Teams HART