Richmond: Kyle Petty preview

Petty Ready for 795th Start Countdown to 800 Continues This Weekend at Richmond This weekend, Kyle Petty wears the colors of Merchant's Tire and Auto Centers as he heads to the .75-mile Richmond (Va.) International Raceway for Saturday...

Petty Ready for 795th Start
Countdown to 800 Continues This Weekend at Richmond

This weekend, Kyle Petty wears the colors of Merchant's Tire and Auto Centers as he heads to the .75-mile Richmond (Va.) International Raceway for Saturday night's Richmond 400. Saturday night's race will be a Car of Tomorrow race.

Petty will be making his 51st career start at Richmond this weekend. Petty won his first Nextel Cup race at the track in 1986. He is a 12 time finisher in the top-10 and has collected three top-five finishes. In all the starts that Petty has made his average finish is 19th. He only has six DNF's at the track and has completed 92 % of his laps at the track.

Comments from Petty as he prepares for Saturday's Richmond 400:

"If you grow up around racing, eventually you are going to find your way to the track in Richmond. That's how popular Richmond is and how deep the roots are there-especially for Petty and for Petty Enterprises. We have pretty strong ties to the track because we have had success there throughout all the years. It's a track that is pretty special to us and I'm looking forward to this weekend."

"It's a track that you really have to love. It's fast, it's a short track, plenty room to race and it's a Saturday night race. All the ingredients for success have gone into the place. It's a short track that allows us room to race. That's what is so great about it. The drivers say all the time that it's one of their favorite tracks. That's why.

"It's not like a Bristol where you can't pass, and it's not like Martinsville where it's tough to pass either. It's a short track that has good racing grooves on it. It's great now too. They repaved it a few years back, but now the bottom grip has wore down. You can use both a high and low line and still be good. It's a vision for a nearly perfect short track. That's why drivers love the place. The fans love it too.

"If you are an investor and want to build a track, hey, just make a Bristol or a Richmond. It's simple. Richmond just added a bunch of new seats. You don't do that unless you are selling out the ones you have. If you add more you hope to sell those out too. They will be packed in there on Saturday night. The fans will come to watch a race at Richmond. They have for years. Adding seats usually means signs of good things.

"I think the race being on Saturday night helps too. The fans love seeing the races at night. We traditionally race on Sunday afternoon, but most race fans see their local races on Saturday nights. If you have a chance to see a Nextel Cup race on a Saturday night you are going to get excited about that. I think the fans do at Richmond. It gives us an extra day off on Sunday, and that's good for the crews. I think it's good.

"It's just tough to say anything bad about the place. It really, really is a good track. We have a good time there. We think we have a good chance of running well too. I like racing there and we're going into the track with momentum. Talladega was good for us. We are working on the Car of Tomorrow. You always want to be better, but we think we are doing some good things with it. I'm ready to get to Richmond and have a good run. It's just tradition."

-credit: pe

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Kyle Petty