MARTIN ON A ROLL AT ATLANTA, LOOKS FOR FOURTH STRAIGHT TOP FIVE Martin and the No. 6 AAA Team on a roll at Atlanta CONCORD, N.C. (March 15, 2006) -- Mark Martin has been red hot as of late at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The veteran driver, who...
MARTIN ON A ROLL AT ATLANTA, LOOKS FOR FOURTH STRAIGHT TOP FIVE
Martin and the No. 6 AAA Team on a roll at Atlanta
CONCORD, N.C. (March 15, 2006) -- Mark Martin has been red hot as of late at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The veteran driver, who will be making his 41st career Cup start at Atlanta this Sunday, comes into the race with a string of three-consecutive top-five finishes at the 1.54-mile fast track, dating back to the fall of 2004 when he led 227 laps in a second-place run.
"Atlanta is definitely one of my favorite tracks," said Martin who comes into the race fifth in the Nextel Cup point standings. "From top to bottom it's one of my favorite places that we race. It's a fast track and over time the pavement has settled and you have a lot of grooves for racing, which really makes for good racing and a good show for the fans."
Statistically Atlanta has been one of Martin's strongest tracks. In 40 starts he has accumulated two victories, one pole, 12 top-fives and 20 top-10 finishes. Furthermore, Martin has led 924 laps at AMS, including 43 last fall and 272 in the last three races there. In addition to strong finishes, Martin boasts a strong starting history at Atlanta, where he has an average start of 10.4 and has started inside the top 10 in 24 of 40 starts and inside the top five on 17 occasions.
Martin's history at Atlanta runs deep. He made his career start at the track just two days shy of 24 years to the day of Sunday's 41st start, starting 12th and finishing 19th in the Coca-Cola 500. He returned there in the spring and ran to the first of his 20 top-10 finishes with a 10th-place finish. He earned his first top five there in the spring race of 1990. The following year in the fall he earned the first of his two AMS wins, taking the checkered flag in the Hardee's 500. He returned to Atlanta the next spring and earned his only pole there. His other Atlanta victory came in the 1994 season finale.
Adding to Martin's Atlanta legacy is three wins, two poles and 500 laps led in only 10 starts in the Busch Series. Martin also clinched his record fifth IROC Championship last fall in Atlanta in a second-place finish in his first and only IROC start there. He will have another chance to add to his AMS accolades when he starts his first Craftsman Truck Series race there this Friday night as well.
"We've had a blast in the truck this season and it's going to be a lot of fun to get out there in the No. 6 Scotts Ford F-150 at Atlanta," added Martin. "We've really set the bar there and you have to realize that we can't win every race. There is really some great competition in that series, but we are sure going to try and make it three in a row."