Phoenix II: Jason Leffler preview

Jason Leffler and Braun Racing Make Return to the Nextel Cup Series at Phoenix with Sponsorship from Ft. McDowell Resort Destination MOORESVILLE, N.C. (November 6, 2006) -- Jason Leffler and Braun Racing are approaching what will be their...

Jason Leffler and Braun Racing Make Return to the Nextel Cup Series at Phoenix with Sponsorship from Ft. McDowell Resort Destination

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (November 6, 2006) -- Jason Leffler and Braun Racing are approaching what will be their busiest and most challenging weekend of the 2006 season as they prepare to pull double duty at Phoenix International Raceway. Leffler, a Long Beach, CA native, will compete in Saturday's NASCAR Busch Series event, piloting the No. 38 Great Clips Chevrolet, and the Nextel Cup Series race in the No. 71 Fort McDowell "Yavapai Pride" Chevrolet, both entries fielded by Braun Racing.

Leffler, who currently sits 13th in the NASCAR Busch Series driver point standings, has competed on and off in the Nextel Cup Series for five seasons for a total of 62 career starts. He made his Nextel Cup debut in 2001 with Chip Ganassi Racing and in his rookie season, captured his first pole at Kansas Speedway and finished the season fourth in the Rookie-of-the-Year battle. Over the next several seasons, Leffler competed part-time in the series, often pulling double duty while running full-time in the NASCAR Busch Series and NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.

Leffler's most recent Nextel Cup start was in the 2005 Allstate 400 at the Brickyard. Following that event, Leffler joined Braun Racing to compete full-time in the NASCAR Busch Series. To date this season Leffler has three top-five, seven top-10 finishes and two poles. Additionally, this weekend will mark Braun Racing's first attempt of the season to compete in a Nextel Cup event. Last year, Braun Racing fielded a car in two Cup events including Atlanta and Bristol.

Leffler has every reason to feel confident heading into the Phoenix event weekend. He has been consistently strong on the flat, mile-long tracks this season and his performance in the NASCAR Busch Series spring event at Phoenix was equally impressive as he started from the pole, led for 78 laps and virtually dominated the field before being taken out of contention by another competitor.

"It's really an ideal situation to be able to go to Phoenix and run both the Busch and Cup events," said Leffler. "We have been extremely strong on the one-mile flat tracks this season and I think we probably had the strongest car in the spring Busch race here before we got taken out. Hopefully, we can take that momentum and apply it to our Cup run this weekend. We have Fort McDowell Resort Destination supporting us in our effort this weekend and our goal is to put up a good, solid performance for them. It's stiff competition in the Nextel Cup Series but I speak for the entire Braun Racing team when I say that we are looking forward to the challenge."

Crew Chief, Todd Lohse, knows that pulling double duty will require a tremendous amount of effort and dedication from his team but is confident in their ability to get the job done.

"It is going to be a challenging weekend for our team," said Lohse. "We have a very dedicated group that will do what it takes to ensure our cars are well prepared on both sides of the garage."

"The Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation is proud to sponsor Braun Racing and Jason Leffler in their NASCAR Nextel Cup effort at Phoenix International Raceway," said Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation President Raphael Bear. "The Nation's involvement with Braun Racing will continue to provide us with significant visibility with both race attendees and television viewers. As NASCAR has quickly become the largest spectator sport in America it has also turned into a tremendous marketing platform that allows us to reach a wide audience to market Fort McDowell as a great resort destination. We look forward to the weekend and to seeing the No. 71 Fort McDowell "Yavapai Pride" Chevrolet on the track."

-credit: braun racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Jason Leffler , Chip Ganassi
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing