Memphis: Stephen Leicht preview

* This Week's Holiday Inn/Holiday Inn Express Chevrolet Impala SS at Memphis Motorsports Park ... Stephen Leicht will pilot Chassis No. 058 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Nationwide Series stable in this weekend's Kroger on Track for the...

* This Week's Holiday Inn/Holiday Inn Express Chevrolet Impala SS at Memphis Motorsports Park ... Stephen Leicht will pilot Chassis No. 058 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Nationwide Series stable in this weekend's Kroger on Track for the Cure 250. In 2008, Clint Bowyer drove this Chevrolet to an 18th-place finish at O'Reilly Raceway Park and a third-place finish at the Milwaukee Mile. In 2007, former RCR developmental drivers Tim McCreadie and Timothy Peters drove this Chevy five times. McCreadie raced it at Milwaukee, ORP, Richmond International Raceway and Memphis finishing 28th, 12th, 32nd and 16th, respectively. Peters drove it to a 13th-place finish at Phoenix International Raceway. In 2006, Kevin Harvick was four for five with this chassis, earning victories at Martinsville Speedway, ORP, Richmond and Memphis before finishing second at Phoenix.

* RCR Equipment for Leicht ... Leicht, an Asheville, N.C., native, joined RCR in 2008 and has driven in 13 NNS events for the Welcome, N.C.,-based team. He has recorded seven top-10 and 10 top-20 finishes dating back to February 25, 2008. Leicht has earned an 11.7 average starting position, a 13.4 average finishing position and has completed 2,407 of 2,530 (94.5 percent) laps contested.

* Elite Status ... Leicht is one of six non-double-duty drivers to run at least one full NNS season since 2006 who have won a race in NASCAR's junior division. The list also includes Marcos Ambrose, Mike Bliss, Brad Keselowski, Jason Leffler and Paul Menard.

* RCR at Memphis ... In 21 NNS starts at Memphis, RCR has earned three wins, the most of any organization. Harvick earned two of those victories in 2000 and 2006, while Bowyer visited Memphis' Victory Lane in 2005. RCR Chevrolets have 10 top-five and 12 top-20 finishes, boasts a 10.2 average finish, led 486 laps of competition and completed 5,110 of 5,289 (96.6 percent) of laps contested, with only one DNF (Did Not Finish) at the three-quarter-mile oval.

* Rearview Mirror ... Sound pit strategy, by way of favorable cautions, allowed Jeff Burton and the No. 29 team to finish ninth in last weekend's Dollar General 300 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Burton led for a total of 24 laps before making an unscheduled pit stop due to a vibration in the left-front tire, but battled back to earn the team's 21st top-10 finish of the season.

* Point Check ... With four races remaining in the 2009 Nationwide Series season, the No. 29 Holiday Inn team sits sixth in the NNS owners' point standings. The Doug Randolph-led team is 55 markers in arrears to Joe Gibbs Racing's No. 20 team, in fifth, and 170 points forward Braun Racing's No. 32 entry, in seventh.

STEPHEN LEICHT:

This is the last Nationwide Dash for Cash race. What would it mean to earn that extra $25,000 if you won at Memphis?

"I like what Nationwide has done with the bonus cash for the four races. Brad (Keselowski) won $75,000 after it rolled over to Iowa, but this weekend there's a fresh $25,000 on the line. Winning that extra money would be awesome, but I really want to get Holiday Inn and RCR the victory. Everyone's worked really hard this year and being able to bring the trophy back to North Carolina would be great."

This is your last race in the No. 29 this season. What are your goals heading into this weekend?

"I'm excited to be able to get back into the car in Memphis. The main goal is to have a strong finish. With Jeff (Burton) and Clint (Bowyer) being in the car recently, the No. 29 Chevy has run very well and shown a lot of speed. My job is to come in and carry those strong runs over to another solid finish this weekend."

What does it take to be successful at Memphis?

"Memphis is a tough track because you'll have a long green-flag run for most of the day and then a few cautions at the end. The biggest challenge is getting your car to perform strong enough on the long run, but still be fast when it comes to a short run. If we can get our car balanced to show consistent speeds throughout a run, we should have a good weekend."

DOUG RANDOLPH (crew chief):

What are your goals for the last four races of the season?

"We've fallen off over the last three races in qualifying trim, so that's definitely an area we need to improve on. At the same time, we want to start preparing for next season, now. We want to gain some momentum heading into 2010 so we can get RCR's Nationwide Series program back to championship form. Everyone has been putting a lot of time and energy into making our program better and, although we've made improvements, there is always more room for improvement. Right now, we want to finish fourth in the owners' points. Hopefully, we can contend for a win or two before the season is done to give us that little push in order to start next year off on the right foot."

-credit: rcr

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Jeff Burton , Jason Leffler , Kevin Harvick , Marcos Ambrose , Mike Bliss , Paul Menard , Clint Bowyer , Timothy Peters , Stephen Leicht , Tim McCreadie
Teams Richard Childress Racing , Joe Gibbs Racing