Atlanta II: Earnhardt Ganassi Racing preview

Martin Truex Jr. and No. 1 Guitar Hero® 5 Team Atlanta History: Martin Truex Jr. will make his tenth Sprint Cup Series start at Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend. In nine prior starts at the track Truex has an average start position of 19.7...

Martin Truex Jr. and No. 1 Guitar Hero® 5 Team

Atlanta History: Martin Truex Jr. will make his tenth Sprint Cup Series start at Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend. In nine prior starts at the track Truex has an average start position of 19.7 and an average finishing position of 24.2. His best finish came in 2007 when he took the checkered flag in eighth. Truex has led 135 laps at the 1.5 mile oval. Earlier this season, Truex was taken to the hospital for a kidney stone after final practice was finished on Saturday. He was then able to overcome the kidney stone and post an impressive 10th-place finish.

Bristol Weekend: After posting the fastest lap during the first practice at Bristol Motor Speedway, Truex looked poised to have a strong finish. Taking the green flag from 24th position, Truex quickly showed how fast the Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevy was, moving into the top-10 by lap 35. He raced his way as high as second place before spending most of the evening battling inside the top-10. When the caution flew for rain with 40 laps remaining, Crew Chief Kevin "Bono" Manion called Truex to pit road from the 8th position to make his final stop of the night. Some teams stayed out so Truex would lineup for the restart in 14th. While fighting his way back to the front, the 26 car made contact with the left front fender of the No.1 Bass Pro Chevy. The contact forced the Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet into the pits to repair the damage. Truex would come out of the pits in 22nd position where he would go on to finish the race.

Guitar Hero® 5 on the Hood: The #1 best-selling video game, Guitar Hero®, returns to the track at Atlanta Motor Speedway as primary sponsor of Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates' No. 1 Chevrolet driven by Martin Truex Jr. The paint scheme coincides with the launch of the popular video game franchise's latest hit, Guitar Hero® 5 on Tuesday, Sept. 1. The video game returns as primary sponsor of Earnhardt Ganassi Racing for the sixth time this season after sponsoring Aric Almirola and the No. 8 Team for four races, including the 2009 Daytona 500, and the No. 1 team with driver Martin Truex Jr. at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

In the Points: Truex and the No. 1 Chevrolet moved up one spot in the NSCS standings to the 23rd position.

Juan Pablo Montoya and No. 42 Target Team

Atlanta History: Juan Pablo Montoya will be making his sixth NSCS start at Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend. He has an average starting position of 16.8 and an average finishing position of 24.4 in his five prior NSCS starts. Montoya's best finish of fifth came in his first NSCS start at the 1.54-Mile Quad-Oval. Earlier this season, Montoya qualified fourth but battled an ill-handling car before coming home 27th. In the NNS garage, Montoya has one start which resulted in an eighth-place finish.

Montoya Holds Benefit Concert: While many in NASCAR used the off week to relax, Juan Pablo Montoya took the opportunity to continue with his philanthropic efforts. Juan Pablo and his wife Connie held a benefit concert in Panama City, Panama, called Formula Latina, last week to benefit his Formula Smiles foundation. Formula Latina was a private concert, held to benefit nearly 5000 underprivileged Colombian children to whom new opportunities are offered through sports and healthy recreation. Nearly a dozen popular stars of the Latin music scene participated in the benefit concert including Latin pop sensation Luis Fonsi.

About Bristol: Juan Pablo Montoya maintained his position inside the top-12 of the NASCAR Sprint Cup standings after a 25th-place finish at Bristol Motor Speedway. Montoya had a fast car all weekend and qualified 11th for the start of the Sharpie 500. He battled inside the top-10 for the majority of his day, often appearing inside the top-5. Montoya moved into the second position as a caution fell for rain with only 40 laps remaining, but after the restart he started falling back and was eventually forced to pit with a right rear tire going down. The pit stop put the Target Chevrolet two laps down, relegating Montoya to a 25th-place finish.

In the Points: With only two races remaining before the Chase cutoff, Montoya sits ninth in the NSCS standings. He is now 64 points in front of 13th position and just 20 points out of seventh. Just 89 points separates 7th through 14th position in the standings.

2009 In Numbers: Montoya and the Target team have one pole award, one top-five, 11 top-10 and 15 top-15 finishes in the 2009 season. In the 24 Cup races run this season Montoya has earned 19 top-20 finishes. He has led 133 laps and averages a starting position of 12.4 and a finishing position of 14.0 for the season.

CHASSIS INFO

No. 1 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet (NSCS): Chassis #804. The No. 1 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet team will bring chassis #040 to Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend. This chassis has been used once this season at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

No. 42 Target Chevrolet (NSCS): Chassis #818. Pattie and the No. 42 team are brining chassis #819 to Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend, marking the fourth race of the season for this chassis. Montoya's best finish with this chassis came at Pocono Raceway where he finished a season-high second place. The team also used chassis #819 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway where Montoya qualified on the outside pole and led 116 of the races 160 laps.

-credit: egr

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing