KVAPIL RETURNS TO POCONO RACEWAY Mooresville, N.C. (July 19, 2005) - As Travis Kvapil returns to Pocono Raceway for the second-time in the 2005 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series season, his thoughts are on how he, along with the No. 77 Kodak Racing team,...
KVAPIL RETURNS TO POCONO RACEWAY
Mooresville, N.C. (July 19, 2005) - As Travis Kvapil returns to Pocono Raceway for the second-time in the 2005 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series season, his thoughts are on how he, along with the No. 77 Kodak Racing team, can improve their performance from one month ago.
Last month, Kvapil was given an opportunity to gain additional seat time at the 2.5-mile triangular shaped track during his inaugural visit. Penske Racing South entered Kvapil in the ARCA RE/MAX Series event, which he won.
He backed that up with a 17th-place finish in the Pocono 500 NEXTEL Cup Series event the following day.
While the top-20 finish played an instrumental role in helping Kvapil advance in the points, he has since fallen back to 33rd.
"I took advantage of the ARCA race but we still didn't do what we needed to do during the Cup race," Kvapil said. "Not that 17th was all that bad, especially for my first outing, but we needed better. This weekend we are returning with a better plan of attack."
This time around the Kodak Racing team has notes to work from and doesn't have to worry about starting fresh. Crew Chief Shane Wilson has been looking forward to this race for a few weeks now.
"As soon as the race was over last month, I started going over my notes," Wilson said. "There is something to be said for a notebook. I've said it before and I will continue to say it. Now is the time to show our improvements."
The Penske-Jasper Racing crew is taking chassis No. PRS-088 to Pocono Raceway. PRS-088 is the same car Kvapil raced earlier this year at California Speedway. He started that event from the 35th position and finished in the 24th position.
Since its return to Penske Racing South/Penske-Jasper Racing headquarters in Mooresville, N.C., the chassis has been fitted with a new body and was tested last week at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
"[PRS-088] is a good car," Wilson said. "It didn't go to the wind tunnel but a sister car, PRS-096, did and the numbers were good. We tested 088 at Indy and we're pleased with the results. Now we will see what we can get done on the race track in competition."
PRS-096 is a new car built for the No. 77 Kodak Racing team. As is customary for most new cars at Penske Racing South, the team took it to Lockheed in early July. Incidentally, 096 is planned for competition at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Despite the tire challenges teams dealt with during the June event at Pocono, Wilson is confident the Kodak Racing team "will be fine."
"We know what we need to do [at Pocono]," Wilson said. "We were in good shape last time with the Goodyears and this time around should be no different. I think part of the challenges the other teams faced last time around was brought on by the drivers. Pocono is a tough track and you make speed up where you can. That sometimes means cutting corners and on those corners, there will sometimes be rumble strips. We will be good-to-go."