Atlanta: GM Racing preview

Chevrolet Looks For Victory ...

Chevrolet Looks For Victory #34 At Atlanta Motor Speedway

* Chevrolet dominates Atlanta Motor Speedway with 33 victories
* Team Chevy drivers occupy eight of the top-10 standings

Hampton, Ga. - With just three races under their belts in the 2007 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series, Team Chevy heads to Atlanta Motor Speedway (AMS) for the Kobalt Tools 500 on Sunday, March 18th.

Known as the fastest track on the circuit, the action on the 1.5-mile track located southeast of Atlanta in Hampton, Georgia, always provides plenty of excitement for fans and drivers alike. In the 95 NASCAR Cup races held at Atlanta Motor Speedway since 1960, Chevrolet has amassed 33 victories - more than any other manufacturer. Of the Team Chevy line-up this weekend, six drivers on the roster have visited victory lane in Atlanta.

Jeff Gordon, driver of the No. 24 DuPont Monte Carlo SS, leads the way with four wins at Atlanta (spring '95, fall '98, spring '99, and fall '03), which is more than any other active full-time driver in the series.

"I love Atlanta," said Gordon. "It is one of my very favorite tracks we go to right now. I love the surface there, everything about it. It has multiple grooves and we have run really good there the last couple of races. I am looking forward to going back there."

After the challenges of tackling a new track configuration last weekend in Las Vegas, Gordon is looking forward to racing on a familiar surface.

"At Atlanta, we'll get to go back to the way you wish we could be every weekend where you have a worn out surface. You have a tire that wears out but doesn't seem to blow out. You have long runs, the regular fuel cell in the current car, everything I love about this sport is what is going to happen this weekend."

Gordon is just six points behind Mark Martin, driver of the No. 01 U.S. Army Chevrolet, who has been the point leader for the past three consecutive weeks. Martin will make his 43rd career start at AMS this weekend and has posted two wins there (fall, '91 & '94).

Tony Stewart, the defending AMS winner who drives the No. 20 Home Depot Monte Carlo SS, also won on this fast track in the spring of 2002. Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the No. 8 Budweiser Monte Carlo SS, has three consecutive top-five finishes and one win (spring '04) at AMS. And Kevin Harvick, '07 Daytona 500 winner in the No. 29 Shell/Pennzoil Chevrolet, beat Jeff Gordon in March '01 by a mere .006 seconds.

Fresh from last Sunday's third consecutive win at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Jimmie Johnson, is ready to make it two in a row. Piloting the No. 48 Lowe's Monte Carlo, Johnson won at AMS in the fall of 2002.

"Atlanta is such a challenging track," said Johnson, who ranks 4th in the standings. "I don't think many guys are comfortable getting into that race track. Personally, that's one of the best tracks we run on. The old asphalt is abrasive. We race from the top to the bottom and it's rougher than pretty much any track we go to. I hope they leave that place alone and never touch it and never think about resurfacing it. I think it puts on a great show."

Jeff Burton, No. 31 Cingular Wireless Monte Carlo, who is in third place just 42 points behind Martin, has five top-5 finishes at AMS. Kyle Busch currently ranks seventh and has five Atlanta starts in the No. 5 Kellogg's Chevy. And Denny Hamlin, No. 11 FedEx Monte Carlo SS and J.J. Yeley, No. 18 Interstate Batteries Monte Carlo SS are eighth and ninth (respectively) in the points and have three starts each at AMS.

-credit: gm racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeff Burton , Jeff Gordon , Tony Stewart , Jimmie Johnson , Denny Hamlin , Kyle Busch , Mark Martin