BUSCH: Homestead: Roush Racing preview

Roush Racing heads to Miami for Ford Championship Weekend Homestead-Miami Speedway, November 18th-21st, 2004 NASCAR NEXTELr Cup Series: Ford 400, Sunday, 1:00PM NASCAR Busch Series: Ford 300, Saturday, 1:00PM NASCAR...

Roush Racing heads to Miami for Ford Championship Weekend

Homestead-Miami Speedway, November 18th-21st, 2004
NASCAR NEXTELr Cup Series: Ford 400, Sunday, 1:00PM
NASCAR Busch Series: Ford 300, Saturday, 1:00PM
NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series: Ford 200, Friday, 3:30PM

Roush Racing Fast Facts

- After a strong second-place run in the Southern 500 at Darlington, Mark Martin and the No. 6 Viagra Racing Team will look to end the season on a winning note in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

- Martin gained 20 points on the leader with last week's second-place finish. Going into the finale, he is currently in fifth place, 82 points behind first and only 10 points out of fourth.

- Martin has eight top-15 finishes in nine races in the Chase, including three second-place finishes. Martin has a 10.4 average in the Chase. He has finished second in two of the last three races and he has led in four of the nine Chase races.

- This will be Martin's sixth start at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In five starts he has compiled three top-five finishes, including a third place run in 2000 and fourth place finishes in 1999 and in 2002.

- Martin and the No. 6 Team tested in Homestead last week and were very pleased with the results, posting the fastest times on the second and final day of testing.

- Matt Kenseth finished 20th at Darlington Raceway one week ago. He has 16 top-10 finishes in 35 starts in 2004. Kenseth has now been inside the NASCAR Top-10 for 70 straight weeks, the longest active streak.

- Kenseth moved up one spot in the point chase rankings to eighth place heading into this final week.

- Kenseth's best finish at Homestead is a 21st place effort, coming in his rookie season.

- Matt Kenseth will also be running in the Busch Series race Saturday in the No. 17 Bayer Ford Taurus

- Kurt Busch continues to the lead in the 2004 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series following his sixth place finish in Darlington last week. He now leads second-place Jimmie Johnson by 18 points.

- Busch has finished in the top six in seven of the nine "Chase for the NEXTEL Cup" events, and has finished on the lead lap and led at least one lap in all but one of the races. Busch is the only driver to finish in the top 10 in all but one of the "Chase" events.

- Busch has scored bonus points in eight of the nine races of the Chase, leading all drivers with 50 bonus points. Busch's 9.3-average finish in the first nine races of the Chase is the best of all drivers.

- Busch is running the No. 97 Sharpie paint scheme for the final of 17 events this weekend.

- Sunday's race will mark Busch's 150th start in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series.

- Busch is the only driver eligible to win the championship that has won the race and the pole at Homestead (in 2001 under the track's former configuration).

- In 13 career NEXTEL Cup starts, Carl Edwards has chalked up one top-five and five top-10 finishes.

- Edwards will race both the No. 99 Superchips F-150 and the No. 99 Roush Racing Ford this weekend.

NNCS:

Mark Martin
Team: No. 6 Viagra® Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Pat Tryson
Chassis: RK-118 (finished second at Atlanta and Darlington)

Mark Martin on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We are excited about racing at Homestead this weekend. We really like our chances. We tested there last week and we're really happy with our results. We knew that we'd have a chance to win either of the last two races, and we came up just short last week at Darlington. Still we had a great run and hopefully we can close the deal this weekend at Homestead and end the season on a winning note. Sunday's race at Darlington was a lot of fun and we love it when we race that way. It's the reason we do this.

"As for the points we are 82 out, but we still have a shot. It really doesn't matter, because we are going there to try and win the thing and that's really all we can do. Pat (Tryson) and the Viagra Team have just done a fantastic job this season and no matter what happens this team's effort will be what I remember about 2004."

Crew Chief Pat Tryson on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We had a good run last Sunday at Darlington and hopefully we can do that again this week to close this thing out at Homestead. I know that I'd really love to get one more win before the year is out. We've been close a couple of times and we've been second a handful of times this year, so hopefully this will be our week.

"We are taking the same car that we ran last week and at Atlanta, so we definitely know it is fast enough to get the job done and we know we have the driver to do it as well."

Greg Biffle
Team: No. 16 National Guard Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Doug Richert
Chassis: RK-239 (won at Michigan and finished 10th at Atlanta)

Greg Biffle on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "It's hard to believe that another season has almost come to an end. We've had a lot going on this year running in the NEXTEL Cup Series and Busch Series, but it's been fun. There were a few times it got tough having to fly back and forth across the country to race, but overall it wasn't that bad at all. I hate to see it come to an end, but at the same time I'm looking forward to a break. I had two great teams to work with this year and I appreciate all that they did for me. This will be the second time we've run on the new configuration at Homestead and I really like what they've done with the track. I liked it the old way too, but I think the banking makes for better racing. I'll be running all three races this weekend to get a little extra track time and to hopefully close out the year on a high note by getting a win or two or three."

Crew Chief Doug Richert on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We're taking this car because it seems to run well on these smooth, fast tracks. We have a lot of information compiled from the other Roush teams that tested there a couple of weeks ago. We chose not to test there because we feel confident with the race package we have for that style of track, but the data the other teams gathered has also been useful. I'm very happy with the way this team has developed over the 2004 season. We've had a very good second half and we're looking forward to the 2005 season. We've started building cars for Daytona and the down force tracks with the new spoiler configuration. Our confidence is high heading into next year."

Matt Kenseth
Team: No. 17 DEWALT Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush/Mark Martin
Crew Chief: Robbie Reiser
Chassis: MMR-36 (new chassis tested at Homestead on 11/2-3)

Matt Kenseth on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We don't have enough laps at Homestead in the four years that we've been coming here. We've had some trouble in those races so it was a place where we definitely needed to test this year. The test we had a couple of weeks ago went really well so I'm anxious to see how it works out in practice. I think we have a good car underneath us and hopefully we can capitalize on things and end the year on a great note."

Crew Chief Robbie Reiser on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "I have a feeling we're going to have a good weekend and make up for some of the finishes we haven't had lately. The pit crew is on their 'A' game right now and I think we have a great car and we had a great test. We'd like to go out on top this year."

Kurt Busch
Team: No. 97 Sharpie Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Jimmy Fennig
Chassis: #65 (new chassis, tested at Homestead on 11/2-3)

Kurt Busch on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We need to go out and attack the race track this weekend with the Sharpie Ford, to lead laps and to make sure that we do our job at the end of the race. Miami is going to be a much easier race track to race other competitors on than Darlington was last week. It's a clean slate. It's a fresh style of race track - not many laps have been run there. We went down and tested two weeks ago as well as the No. 48 and the No. 24. It's going to be a matter of who brings the most information from that test and who is able to execute the proper way to come out on top. The track is now a year older so it's a bit more mature, so that will help with the racing. With the way the corners are shaped here with the flatter entry and wider exits with the banking it's definitely a track that you don't have to worry about track position because you can pass."

Crew Chief Jimmy Fennig on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "Last year we only got a few laps at this track before we got caught up in a wreck early on, so it was important for us to go down there and test for a couple of days. We tested the car we raced at Kansas City and a new chassis, and Kurt liked the new one, so that's the one we're going to bring down. We're going to go down there and do what we do every week, and that's try to win this thing."

Carl Edwards
Team: No.99 Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Bob Osborne
Chassis Number: RK-278 (new chassis tested in Homestead last week)

Carl Edwards on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "I'm really looking forward to going to Miami in November; it's always nice to get back into the warm temperatures. We tested there a week or so ago with a brand new car that we really liked so I'm excited to race it this coming weekend. The No. 99 team is coming off a great weekend at Darlington and we really want to finish out the year strong at Miami. It was unbelievable how fast my team was in the pits at the Southern 500. I thought the first couple stops were perfect but then they continued to get faster as the day wore on. It was a huge confidence booster to pull into the pits and pass my competition every time. I'm really looking forward to this weekend because I think we have the potential to run up front."

Crew Chief Bob Osborne on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We had a good test there last week. We took RK-278 which is a new car and it tested really well, we were real pleased with the results. That being said, that's the car we've decided to race this weekend. I think we have a strong driver, a strong racecar and a strong pit crew which will hopefully give us the results we're looking for this weekend."

NBS:

Greg Biffle
Team: No. 60 Charter Communications Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Brad Parrott
Chassis: JR-80 (swept Fontana this season)

Greg Biffle on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "It's hard to believe that another season has almost come to an end. We've had a lot going on this year running in the NEXTEL Cup Series and Busch Series, but it's been fun. There were a few times it got tough having to fly back and forth across the country to race, but overall it wasn't that bad at all. I hate to see it come to an end, but at the same time I'm looking forward to a break. I had two great teams to work with this year and I appreciate all that they did for me.

"This will be the second time we've run on the new configuration at Homestead and I really like what they've done with the track. I liked it the old way too, but I think the banking makes for better racing. I'll be running all three races this weekend to get a little extra track time and to hopefully close out the year on a high note by getting a win or two or three."

Crew Chief Brad Parrott on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "Unfortunate circumstances took us out of contention last week at Darlington and we're hoping to rebound from that and have a good run in the last race of the season at Homestead. We're taking our best car with us this weekend and we expect to be the team to beat. Everyone on the Charter team really wants to finish out the year with a win.

"It's been a good year for us and I'm proud of the effort everyone put in. I just want to say thanks to Greg Biffle for taking the time to run with us all year in addition to his Cup car. He certainly made it exciting for us at times and hopefully sometime we'll get to team up together again and make another run at a championship."

NCTS:

Jon Wood
Team: No. 50 Roush Racing Ford F-150
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Tony Price
Chassis: #36 (most recently run at California)

Jon Wood on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We should have a pretty good truck this weekend, and we had a good run at Homestead last year. It was a lot of fun racing there last year since they redid the track. It was an exciting finish and I would bet that this year won't be any different. I wish we could be in the championship hunt this weekend, but this team has made a lot of progress since mid-season. It would be nice to at least end the season with a win since we aren't a factor in the points."

Crew Chief Tony Price on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We didn't have the race we wanted in Darlington, but we have one more chance to win a race this season. The truck, team and driver are all capable of winning this race so there is no reason to believe we can't do it. Chassis 36 is a good truck and I think it will run well at Homestead."

Carl Edwards
Team: No. 99 Superchips Ford F-150
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Kevin Starland
Chassis: #37 (won at Kansas)

Carl Edwards on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "I've been looking forward to Homestead for about a year to make up for our finish last season. We had transmission trouble last year and finished 27th. This year we are still in the running for the championship and our goal is to win this race. We're a long shot for the championship, but I've seen stranger things happen in auto racing. We're 148 points out of first, but it's still mathematically possible so we're not giving up on it.

"I was able to test the Nextel Cup car there last week and we had a really good test. I'm sure the extra laps there will help me out in both races. If last year was any indication, I'm sure this race will be quite exciting. I'm sure Travis Kvapil would be the first to tell you that anything can happen and it's not over until the checkered flag waves."

Crew Chief Kevin "Cowboy" Starland on racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway: "We have to have a mistake-free race at Homestead. You never know when the three guys ahead of us in the points will have trouble, so we need to be there to capitalize on it if they do. If nothing else, our goal is to win this race."

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup , NASCAR XFINITY , NASCAR Truck
Drivers Matt Kenseth , Greg Biffle , Kurt Busch , Jimmie Johnson , Jon Wood , Carl Edwards , Jack Roush , Doug Richert , Mark Martin , Travis Kvapil