Phoenix II: Sam Hornish Jr. preview

* Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the Penske Racing No. 77 Mobil 1 Dodge Charger, considers Phoenix International Raceway to be one of his favorite tracks as the one-mile tri-oval has been historically significant to his racing career. The "Jewel of...

* Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the Penske Racing No. 77 Mobil 1 Dodge Charger, considers Phoenix International Raceway to be one of his favorite tracks as the one-mile tri-oval has been historically significant to his racing career. The "Jewel of the Desert" was the site of his first IndyCar Series win (3/18/01), his first race in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (11/11/06), his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut (11/11/07), and his first top-10 in Cup Series competition (04/18/09).

* Hornish has 36 Cup Series starts at NASCAR short-track venues, accumulating a total of three top-10, five top-15 and nine top-20 finishes at tracks measuring one mile in distance or less. Hornish has an average starting position of 21st at NASCAR short tracks with a best start of third, which came in the spring at Phoenix International Raceway. Hornish has an average finish of 20th in short-track competition with a top result of sixth at Richmond International Raceway in May of 2009.

* Hornish will sign autographs at the Penske Racing souvenir trailer at Phoenix International Raceway on Sunday, November 14 from 9 -- 9:30 a.m. MST.

Sam Hornish Jr.

What are thoughts on racing at Phoenix International Raceway?

"Phoenix is always a wildcard place for me. Anytime we go there, I feel like we can qualify in the top 10 and finish in the top 10 as long as we don't have any issues with the car. Phoenix and Pocono are two of my favorite places to run. I don't really know why since they are so drastically different. Phoenix is probably my favorite place to race."

Crew Chief Travis Geisler

What are some considerations that crew chiefs need to keep in mind at Phoenix International Raceway?

"The Mobil 1 Dodge team is ready to make our last trip out west this season to Phoenix. We have had some good runs in the past at the unique one-mile oval. One challenging aspect of this short track is the difference between the corners. Turns 1 and 2 are much tighter and have more banking than Turns 3 and 4, and the back straightaway has a 'dog leg' which creates a difficult entry into Turn 3. We hope that we will have what Sam needs to run in the top 10 again at Phoenix."

-source: penske racing

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Travis Geisler , Sam Hornish Jr.
Teams Team Penske