Phoenix: FM Racing preview

IMPALA SS ON THE TRACK: Phoenix International Raceway * Team Chevy drivers have won nine (9) times in the 23 previous NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) races at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) * A Bowtie driver has won the last five NSCS...

IMPALA SS ON THE TRACK: Phoenix International Raceway

* Team Chevy drivers have won nine (9) times in the 23 previous NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) races at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR)

* A Bowtie driver has won the last five NSCS races at PIR and seven of the last eight

* Jeff Gordon, No. 24 DuPont Impala SS, is the defending winner of the spring event at PIR, the four-time NSCS champion's career-first at the desert track

ALBA COLON, GM RACING PROGRAM MANAGER FOR NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES:

"In 2007 our Impala SS drivers won both races at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR). Jeff Gordon captured his career-first victory at PIR in the spring race and set the tone for the performance of our Team Chevy drivers for the remainder of the season in the Impala SS race car.

"PIR is a popular track with our teams and drivers because it is technical due to the unique configuration for a one-mile oval. It presents challenges that test the strength of the team. There is a dogleg coming out of turn two on to the backstretch that requires the car to handle well through that transition as well as horsepower to pull through turns one and two to get to the wall and maneuver the dogleg.

"In addition, passing points around the track are limited, so the timing and strategy for drivers to make passes demands their constant focus. It provides a great race for the fans.

"Pit road is another challenge for teams at PIR. It is long, extending all the way to turn two. Qualifying is critical to secure a good pit box selection. The ability to get off and on pit road has a significant impact on a team's race outcome.

"We are looking forward to this weekend at Phoenix. With Chevrolet winning seven of the last eight races there, including working on a streak of five consecutive, we are excited to see our Impala SS teams back in action at PIR."

FROM THE DRIVER'S SEAT:

JEFF BURTON, NO. 31 AT&T IMPALA SS, CURRENT NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES POINTS LEADER: What's unique about racing at Phoenix? "The reason it's unique is because it has superspeedway straightaways and short track corners. It's a fun race track to compete on. It has multiple grooves. You don't have to run right on the bottom, you can run on top or in the middle. It's a neat race track with short track characteristics and higher speeds. You don't get a demolition derby as you do on the shorter tracks but you get good racing."

JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 DUPONT IMPALA SS, DEFENDING WINNER OF THE SUBWAY FRESH FIT 500K: "This track is tricky, and it really challenges everyone. Turns 1 and 2 are banked, while 3 and 4 are flat. And the groove really widens out during the race. "It's a track where we always seemed to run well, but we just never could get that victory until last year."

-credit: gm racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Jeff Gordon