Phoenix: Sam Hornish Jr preview

* Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the Penske Racing No. 77 Mobil 1 Dodge Charger, posted a 32nd place finish last weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. As a result, the No. 77 team advanced back into the top 35 in owner points, now ranked 34th. Hornish Jr....

* Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the Penske Racing No. 77 Mobil 1 Dodge Charger, posted a 32nd place finish last weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. As a result, the No. 77 team advanced back into the top 35 in owner points, now ranked 34th. Hornish Jr. is also 34th in the 2008 driver points standings.

* Hornish Jr. is currently second in the 2008 Raybestos Rookie of the Year standings, trailing Regan Smith by one point.

* Hornish Jr. has a total of three short-track starts in NASCAR Cup Series competition with an average start of 19.6 and an average finish of 29.0.

* In the IndyCar Series, Hornish Jr. has a total of six starts with two wins, three top-five and five top-20 finishes at Phoenix.

* Phoenix International Raceway is the site of Hornish Jr.'s first IndyCar Series win (3/18/01), his NASCAR Cup Series debut (11/11/07) and his first race in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (11/11/06).

* Penske Racing is just two wins shy of reaching the milestone of 300 victories across a variety of racing series, including NASCAR Cup, the IndyCar Series and the American Le Mans Series, among others.

Chassis Chatter

PRS-562: This weekend's race car was last driven by Hornish Jr. at Atlanta Motor Speedway in March 2008. Hornish Jr. qualified 33rd and finished 25th in that event.

PRS-553: The backup car for this weekend is a brand new race car.

Sam Hornish Jr. on Phoenix International Raceway

"I've had a lot of success at Phoenix International Raceway and have had a lot of 'firsts' here in Indy car and NASCAR competition. It's been a great place for me to be able to come out here and to run.

"I think the thing you see different about this track than most other ones is both ends are completely different. They're really not anything alike. A lot of times this track is a compromise, you're compromising one end or the other to make your car do what you want it to do. Very seldom do you ever get the car where it's really good on both ends."

Crew Chief Chris Carrier on Phoenix International Raceway

"Phoenix International Raceway is a tricky place to race. The two corners are different from each other so you have to focus on which part of the track is most critical. I feel it's one of the more difficult places we run because you have to bring a complete package and anticipate the needs of the car.

"Phoenix is a driver's track because it requires a lot of thought to have a successful run there. Sam (Hornish Jr.) made his first-ever NASCAR Cup start at Phoenix last year, and my understanding is that he did very well and was competitive. Our goal is to be smart and be in the top 35 heading into Talladega."

-credit: pr

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Regan Smith , Sam Hornish Jr. , Sam Hornis , Chris Carr
Teams Team Penske