BUSCH: Loudon: Roush Racing preview

Roush Racing heads to New Hampshire after final off weekend Roush Racing Fast Facts - Mark Martin won the first ever Cup pole at Loudon (7/11/93). - Martin is currently 15th in the Nextel Cup point race. Martin gained 18 points on 10th place...

Roush Racing heads to New Hampshire after final off weekend

Roush Racing Fast Facts

- Mark Martin won the first ever Cup pole at Loudon (7/11/93).

- Martin is currently 15th in the Nextel Cup point race. Martin gained 18 points on 10th place at Chicago and is currently 138 points outside of the top 10. Martin needs to gain an average of 17.25 points per race to make it into the field's top 10 after 26 races to be eligible for the playoffs.

- This will be Martin's 19th race at the 1.058-mile oval track. Martin finished inside the top 10 in 10 of his first 12 races at Loudon, but has finished 16th or worse in four straight at Loudon. Overall, Martin has scored 11 top-10 and seven top-five finishes there. He has never won at Loudon, but has finished seond on three occasions.

- Martin started his milestone 500th consecutive race at Loudon last fall. He also took the points lead there in the fall of 2002. He won the first Cup pole there in 1993 and has finished second there three times, while never winning.

- Kurt Busch has been among the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Top 10 for 17 of the 18 weeks (his only week out was following a 16th place finish at the season-opening Daytona 500).

- Busch finds himself just 18 points behind eighth-place Kevin Harvick and 41 behind seventh-place Elliott Sadler heading into the 19th race of the season this Sunday in Loudon, NH.

- Busch has a pair of top-10 finishes at New Hampshire in six career starts, both during the 2002 season. He finished eighth in the 2002 July event and followed-up with a runner-up performance in September. Last season, he finished 11th in this event.

- Busch is running the IRWIN Industrial Tools paint scheme for the 12th of 19 events in 2004.

- Busch has extra incentive to run well at NHIS to benefit low-income families. For a top five-finish, IRWIN will donate $10,000 in product to the charitable foundation Rebuilding Together, and $20,000 for a win.

- Matt Kenseth finished 12th at Chicagoland Speedway two weeks ago to remain fifth in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup standings. He is 399 points out of first place. Kenseth has spent 53 straight weeks inside the "NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Top 10"--the longest active streak.

- This week marks the third of six events for the No. 17 Smirnoff Ice Ford and their primary sponsorship.

- In eight starts at NHIS, Kenseth has posted four top-10's and two top-five finishes.

- Jeff Burton has four wins (Spring 1997, 1998, 2000 and Fall 1999), the most of any other active NEXTEL Cup driver at New Hampshire.

- In the spring 2000 race Burton lead all 300 laps, the most laps led by a race winner at the track.

- Burton has seven top-five and eight top-10 finishes at New Hampshire in the NEXTEL Cup car.

- Over the last 14 races at New Hampshire, Burton has completed 94.8 % of his total laps run in a Cup car.

- In the last 14 races in New Hampshire, Burton's average starting position is 18.4 while his average finishing position is 10.6.

Mark Martin
Team: No. 6 Viagra* Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Pat Tryson
Chassis: RK-191 (finished seventh at Richmond)

Mark Martin on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "It might be one of the most challenging tracks that we race on. You have to be able to handle there or you could be in for a long day. You also want to qualify as good as possible, as it's not a very easy track to pass on. Basically, there are all kinds of issues that can come up, but in the end a good handling car will overcome most of the issues, so hopefully we'll have another strong car this weekend and we can put together another solid run and a good finish. The team has been great this year and all I can ask of them is to keep up the effort that they have been giving me all year."

Crew Chief Pat Tryson on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "After a week off, we are ready to get back out on the track. Chicago kind of left a sour taste in our mouth and we are ready to get past that one. We had a productive week getting ready for Loudon and testing at Indy so that helps things. We are taking the Richmond car to Loudon this weekend and we had a pretty good run there, so hopefully we'll continue our trend of strong runs, but this time we are looking to take home the finish that we deserve. This team is still going strong and we are just going to the track and doing what we've been doing. We've had good cars and we've been solid in the pits. We just have to keep doing that and we'll be fine."

Greg Biffle
Team: Roush Racing
Car: No. 16 National Guard Ford
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Doug Richert
Chassis: RK-229 (finished 21st at Richmond and 35th at Martinsville)

Greg Biffle on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "I always enjoy racing at New Hampshire. It's a flat track and those are always fun for a driver because it requires a lot of throttle and brake input. The keys to New Hampshire are getting the car to rotate in the corner and have lots of forward bite exiting. If you can hit both of those things with the setup then it's generally a good day.

"It was really nice having last weekend off, but I'm ready to get back after it. I'm anxious to get to the track and get back in a racecar. Hopefully we'll have two strong performances with both the National Guard and Charter Fords."

Crew Chief Doug Richert on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: " We're taking RK 229 because it's a good short track car and when we looked back at the data from Richmond, it just seemed like the logical choice. We'll have to work on keeping the car from being tight in the middle of the corners because New Hampshire is quite a bit flatter than Richmond but I feel confident we've made the right choice.

"Looking back on the season so far, we've run way better than what our finishes show. I'm still optimistic about winning and even making a run for the top-10 before the season's out."

Matt Kenseth
Team: No. 17 Smirnoff Ice Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush/Mark Martin
Crew Chief: Robbie Reiser
Chassis: MMR-33 (finished fifth at Richmond)

Matt Kenseth on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "We tested at the Milwaukee Mile for this event because the two tracks are pretty similar. It's usually the same story every time we get to Loudon--how to get your car to turn in the middle of the corner. Once you figure that out, you start moving forward. If you don't have that covered by the time the race starts, it's a long day out here."

Crew Chief Robbie Reiser on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "We're bringing chassis #33 this week to New Hampshire, which we ran at Richmond. I was happy to have a test under our belt before we came here. I don't think this is a place where you need to unload off the truck and get behind. That's where you'll finish."

Kurt Busch
Team: No. 97 IRWIN Industrial Tools Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Jimmy Fennig
Chassis: #52 (led early at Richmond before alternator belt failed)

Kurt Busch on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "New Hampshire is a track where we've had some good runs in the past. The IRWIN car that we are bringing ran really well in Richmond up until we had a mechanical problem concerning a failed belt, so we want to make sure we have a good run. We took a tough hit in the points in Chicagoland, and we're in a really tight battle to stay in that top 10 so that we're contending when we come back here in September."

Crew Chief Jimmy Fennig on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "The key to this track is getting through the middle and off of the corners. You never know with the racing surface either, but we're bringing the same car here that we took to Richmond. We were really quick there, the fastest car on the track, but we had an alternator belt problem that sent us behind the wall for a while and that took a good run away from us, so we're looking to see how this car does with some laps on it."

Jeff Burton
Team: No.99 Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Bob Osborne
Chassis Number: RK-248 (ran at Richmond earlier this year)

Jeff Burton on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "I'm looking forward to getting back on track after the off weekend. The No. 99 team has been making a lot of progress in the past couple months and I really want to continue that momentum. We are bringing faster race cars to the track and we are running up front. I've had success at New Hampshire before and that coupled with our improvements should be a good thing for Sunday."

Crew Chief Bob Osborne on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "I think we are all looking forward to racing again after an off weekend. We are starting to see the fruits of our labor and I think we are all hungry for more. This team has been working extremely hard to bring better cars to the track and its showing. We need to continue running up front and from there I think it's just a matter of time before we see victory lane."

Greg Biffle
Team: No. 60 Charter Communications Ford Taurus
Owner: Jack Roush
Crew Chief: Brad Parrott
Chassis: RK-75 (finished second at Richmond earlier this year)

Greg Biffle on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "I always enjoy racing at New Hampshire. It's a flat track and those are always fun for a driver because it requires a lot of throttle and brake input. The keys to New Hampshire are getting the car to rotate in the corner and have lots of forward bite exiting. If you can hit both of those things with the setup then it's generally a good day.

"It was really nice having last weekend off, but I'm ready to get back after it. I'm anxious to get to the track and get back in a racecar. Hopefully we'll have two strong performances with both the National Guard and Charter Fords."

Crew Chief Brad Parrott on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway: "Loudon is a flat race track and the banking is very similar to Gateway and Milwaukee. We had a good run at Gateway and we were decent at Milwaukee, so we're feeling very optimistic about our chances to run well this weekend. We're taking the same car we finished second with at Richmond earlier in the year and we're hoping to give Greg a car good enough for him to win with on Saturday. That would definitely be a nice way to rebound from our misfortune at Chicagoland."

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup , NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Jeff Burton , Matt Kenseth , Kevin Harvick , Greg Biffle , Kurt Busch , Jack Roush , Elliott Sadler , Doug Richert , Mark Martin