Sears Point: Casey Mears preview

Casey Mears and No. 41 Target Dodge Target Team Facts: * Championship Standings: Casey Mears and the Target Team slipped back to 17th in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup standings after their 31st-place effort at Michigan. Mears...

Casey Mears and No. 41 Target Dodge

Target Team Facts:

* Championship Standings: Casey Mears and the Target Team slipped back to 17th in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup standings after their 31st-place effort at Michigan. Mears had an extremely fast car all day in Michigan, but the team lost nine laps replacing a part on the front suspension.

* Chassis: Crew Chief Jimmy Elledge and the Target Team will bring chassis #004 to Infineon Raceway for the team's first road course race of the season. Mears and the team tested this car at Infineon Raceway in late April in preparation for the 219-mile race.

* West Coast Warriors: Aside from Bakersfield, Calif. native Mears, the No. 41 Target team has three other former California residents on the roster. Crew chief Jimmy Elledge grew up in northern California in Redding, rear tire carrier and No. 42 shock specialist Scott Myers is from Modesto and shock specialist for the Target Dodge, Roger Parkinson, is from San Diego.

* Sonoma: Mears has a solid background of road racing in open-wheel cars. Last year at Sonoma was Mears' first road-course race in a stock car and he finished 26th on the 2-mile road course.

Casey Mears Quotes:

On Sonoma... "We had a pretty good test at Infineon Raceway," said Mears. "Last year in Sonoma was my first road race in a stock car and I thought it would be pretty easy, but it was nothing like I expected. Open-wheel cars are so different that I overdrove the stock car. The Target Dodge is much heavier and reacted differently. I would try and drive it into the turns like an open-wheel car and I was just slow. When I slowed down in the stock car I actually turned quicker lap times.

"These road courses are tough to pass on, so qualifying and pit strategy are going to be extremely important. Jimmy (Elledge) and the team have done a great job all year with pit strategy, so I am confident we can walk away with a good finish. I am looking forward to the race and hopefully we can get that top-five finish we've been after all season."

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Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Casey Mears