This Week’s Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado … Ricky Carmichael will pilot chassis TMS-018 from the Turner Motorsports NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) stable in Saturday’s Kroger 250 at Martinsville Speedway. This is the same Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado he raced last October at Martinsville where he started sixth and finished ninth. Most recently, Carmichael raced this truck in February at Phoenix International Raceway where he finished 31st after a late race incident with another competitor sent him to the garage area 18 laps before the checkered flag.
Martinsville Minutes … Carmichael has three NCWTS starts at Martinsville Speedway. He has notched a pair of top 10s and calls a ninth-place finish a career-best at the tricky .526-mile southern Virginia race track. The 15-time AMA National Champion has logged a 15.7 starting average, a 16th-place average finish and has completed 696 of the 707 (98.4 percent) total laps run over those three events. Darlington Details … Three weeks ago, at Darlington Raceway, Carmichael started 22nd and finished 30th. The 31-year-old driver spent most of the 147-lap event racing inside the top 15, and just outside the top 10, but he lost the handle on his No. 4 Chevrolet and spun exiting Turn 4. To add insult to injury, another competitor couldn’t get slowed down in time to avoid the Monster Energy machine, consequently ending Carmichael’s day just shy of the race’s two-thirds mark. While Carmichael slipped from 13th to 19th in points, he is currently just seven points out of 15th and a slim 12 markers outside the top 12.
In a Nutshell … The 2011 season marks Carmichael’s second year competing on a full-time basis in the NCWTS. Since making his series debut 46 races ago, the father of twins has gone on to earn three top-five and 12 top-10 finishes. Over those same 46 races, Carmichael has logged a 14.2 average start, a 17.1 average finish, completed 91.4 percent of the laps run and earned just over $617,000 in purse money.
Testing One, Two, Three. Testing … In preparation for this weekend’s Kroger 250, Carmichael along with Turner Motorsports teammate James Buescher tested at Motor Mile Speedway on Tues., March 29. Motor Mile Speedway is a flat, four tenths-mile paved oval located near Radford, Va.
Lights, Camera, Action … On Wed., March 30, Carmichael will participate in a commercial shoot for the 2011 NCWTS national advertising campaign. The spots will be shot on location in Monroe, N.C. and will be prominently featured during NASCAR programming throughout the year. The commercials are scheduled to begin airing later this spring.
See the Monster Energy Silverado … The Monster Energy Chevrolet Silverado show truck will make four stops in the Martinsville area this week. The No. 4 machine will visit two Kroger stores in Martinsville on Thursday. From 11 a.m.-1 p.m. race fans can see Carmichael’s truck at the Kroger located at 240 Commonwealth Blvd. The truck is scheduled to visit the Kroger on Greensboro Road later that afternoon from 2 p.m.-4 p.m. On Friday, the Monster Energy Chevy will venture north to Rocky Mount for a noon – 4 p.m. appearance at Kroger Store No. 347 located at 400 Old Franklin Turnpike. On Saturday morning, the truck will be back in Martinsville for a pit stop at Wal-Mart on Commonwealth Blvd.
RICKY CARMICHAEL QUOTES
Talk about your thoughts heading into Martinsville this weekend.
“I’m really excited to go to Martinsville this weekend. I had a two top-10 finishes at Martinsville last year so, statistically, it’s been a great track for me. I qualified sixth last fall and that was against (Kevin) Harvick and (Kyle) Busch so that was awesome – it really was. We had track position all day. I think this weekend is going to be a good race for us. It’s going to be a great track for us to get back going and back into the swing of things. The last two races killed us so I’m looking forward to Martinsville. I’m pretty patient most of the time and that helps a lot at that place. I’m ready to get back there, no doubt. We need to go ahead and knock down a result that our No. 4 Monster Energy Chevrolet is deserving of. We need to pick up where we left off at Daytona and forget about these last two races. I think I have the discipline to hit my marks and put myself in a great position to be there at the end.”
Does Martinsville feel like kind of a hybrid between and beat-and-bang-style race track and a finesse-type of track?
“I’ve learned that when you’re by yourself at Martinsville, it’s very important to not over drive it and hit your marks. You have to pay very close attention to the places on the race track where you lift out of the throttle and where to get back in the gas. It’s finesse. But, on those restarts when everyone is all bunched together, you have to keep your elbows out and stand your ground. At the end of the day, you have to be there with 20 (laps) to go. That’s our goal for this whole Monster Energy Chevrolet team. We have to get to the end of these races and start building some points back up.”
-source: turner motorsports