Texas: Martinsville Speedway news 2008-04-03

Statistics Prove Martinsville Speedway Center Of Racing Excitement MARTINSVILLE, VA (April 3 2008) -- Fans know Martinsville Speedway is an exciting place to watch a race. Now they have statistics to back them up. There...

Statistics Prove Martinsville Speedway Center Of Racing Excitement

MARTINSVILLE, VA (April 3 2008) -- Fans know Martinsville Speedway is an exciting place to watch a race. Now they have statistics to back them up.

There were 1,992 passes in Sunday's Goody's Cool Orange 500 at Martinsville Speedway. That's a 57 percent increase from last year when there were 1,148 passes on the tight half-mile oval.

There were 23 green flag passes for the lead Sunday, a statistic that accounts for lead changes all round the track. That number ties the track record for green flag passes for the lead, set in 2005, and almost doubles the 12 green flag passes for a year ago.

There were also 20 official lead changes among eight drivers. All three, green flag passes, green flag passes for the lead and official lead changes, are tops among short-track events this season.

"This was a really good Martinsville race," said seven-time Martinsville winner Jeff Gordon, who finished second Sunday. "There were a lot of different passes and action and lead changes and that's why so many fans stuck around for so long."

There were also 18 caution periods, the result of the tight, exciting racing fans have come to expect at Martinsville Speedway. Twenty different drivers were involved in crashes, spins and such, and six were in more than one. But 41 of the 43 cars that started the race were still running at the end.

"When you come to a race at Martinsville, you know there is always going to be some action somewhere, if not for the lead than further back in the top 10 or back a little further," said Martinsville Speedway president Clay Campbell. "There's always a pass being made somewhere. And the great thing about it is you are right on top of the action at Martinsville. You can look right into the car and see what's going on. You aren't that close most places."

"I think we saw today that you can pass on the inside, you can pass on the outside, you can race on the outside," said Tony Stewart. "Sometimes the groove where you want to be is on the outside."

The many restarts offered proof that both lanes could be used effectively.

"It was interesting to see the restarts," said Campbell. "I noticed that for many laps they remained side-by-side and in many cases the outside line was the fastest. That's something very few tracks can offer. It looked like a half-mile version of Talladega."

The NASCAR Sprint Cup stars will hit the historic Martinsville half-mile on October 17-19 for the Tums QuikPak 500 and the Kroger 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race.

Tickets for both the Tums QuikPak 500 on Sunday, October 19 and the Kroger 200 on Saturday, October 18 are on sale and may be purchased by calling 1.877.RACE.TIX or online at www.martinsvillespeedway.com.

-credit: ms

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeff Gordon , Tony Stewart , Clay Campbell