Aric Almirola No. 88 GT Vodka Chevrolet
“I did a lot of learning last weekend at Watkins Glen. Road racing is a challenge for me, and I feel like I made a lot of progress from practice, to qualifying, to the race. So I’m hoping for more of the same this week.
“Our GT Vodka team keeps getting better every weekend. Everybody at JRM is working really hard and getting our stuff better. We didn’t come out of the gate the way we needed to back in February. But lately we’ve been on a roll here with top-fives and top-10s, and we gained some points in the championship hunt. We’ve run well, and we want to get to victory lane. If we continue to do what we are doing, the points will take care of themselves.”
Danica Patrick No. 7 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet
“This will be a new experience for me, running a road course (in a stock car) this weekend. It’s going to be an interesting weekend. Fortunately, I was able to test with the Go Daddy team at Road Atlanta in preparation for the Montreal race. I’m grateful for that. Ron (Fellows) was there, and he offered a lot of insight for me.
“The 7 team has had some strong runs at the previous road races this year. We’d like nothing more than to continue that this weekend. But realistically, I think if we keep our nose clean and keep all four wheels on the racetrack, we can come out of this one with a decent finish.”
Ron Fellows No. 5 Canadian Tire Chevrolet
“JR Motorsports has done an amazing job preparing these road-course cars. It showed when we unloaded so well at Road America and Watkins Glen. Tony (Eury) Jr. and the guys should be proud of what they’ve been able to do. We’ve only had to make minor adjustments off the truck. Their cars have been solid.
“Heading back to Montreal is going to be a lot of fun. It’s a challenging course, and it’s always an exciting event for fans and competitors alike, just an all-around great venue. With 50 cars on the entry list, it should make things even more interesting this weekend.”
PATRICK’S STOCK CAR DEBUT ON ROAD COURSE – Danica Patrick will see Nationwide Series action for the first time at a road course this weekend. Patrick, along with teammate Ron Fellows, participated in a road-course test with the No. 7 GoDaddy.com team at Road Atlanta in Braselton, Ga. earlier this summer.
DANICA’S SEASON –Patrick has competed in six races this season, earning one top-five (Las Vegas) and three top-10s (Las Vegas, Chicagoland and Daytona). She holds an average finish of 14.7 and has led 14 laps on the season.
PATRICK’S 2011 NNS SCHEDULE – Following the NAPA Auto Parts 200, Patrick will compete in five more Nationwide Series races in 2011, including Richmond International Raceway (Sept. 9), Kansas Speedway (Oct. 8), Texas Motor Speedway (Nov. 5), Phoenix International Raceway (Nov. 12), and Homestead-Miami Speedway (Nov. 19). GoDaddy.com will sponsor Patrick’s remaining races.
SEASON FINALE FOR FELLOWS – Ron Fellows, a native of Windsor, Ontario, Canada, will compete in his third and final race this season for JRM. Known for his road-course talents, Fellows drove to a runner-up finish with the team earlier this summer at Road America, along with a top-10 finish last weekend at Watkins Glen. He owns eight career starts with the organization, earning one win (Montreal ’08), four top-fives and six top-10 finishes.
HISTORY AT CIRCUIT GILLES VILLENEUVE – Fellows is a past winner of the Montreal event in 2008. With the win, he was part of NASCAR history, as he became the first Canadian to win a NASCAR event on Canadian soil. He qualified sixth and led seven laps en route to his fourth series victory. The win was also the first road-course victory for JRM. In four starts at the facility, Fellows has one win and two top-five finishes. He holds the additional distinction of being the oldest winner of the race at 48 years, 10 months and five days old.
FELLOWS IN NNS – Fellows’ Nationwide Series history goes back 14 years to 1997. In his 20 career races, he scored four wins, nine top-five, and 12 top-10 finishes. Fellows earned two poles, led 206 laps, and has an average finish of 15.2. He holds one top-five and two top-10 finishes in two series starts this year.
CONSISTENT FINISHES – After driving to his sixth top-10 finish in the last seven races, Almirola is ranked fourth (-70) in the championship hunt. He sits 46 points behind third-place Elliott Sadler and 10 points ahead of fifth-place Justin Allgaier.
ROAD RACIN’ WITH ALMIROLA – Almirola raced to an 11th-place finish at Montreal in 2007. The Tampa, Fla. native earned a top-10 finish at Watkins Glen International last weekend with the No. 88 Chevrolet, marking his best finish on any road course in Nationwide Series competition.