Petty Enjoys Memorial Day Tradition Driver Collected Coca-Cola 600 Win in 1987 This weekend, Kyle Petty and the ...
Petty Enjoys Memorial Day Tradition
Driver Collected Coca-Cola 600 Win in 1987
This weekend, Kyle Petty and the #45 Coke Zero Dodge team will head to the 1.5-mile, D-shaped Lowe's Motor Speedway (LMS) for Sunday's Coca-Cola 600. LMS is located in Concord, N.C., just outside of Charlotte.
The Coca-Cola 600 is the longest event on the NASCAR Nextel Cup circuit. It is a Memorial Day weekend tradition in the southeastern United States- it has occupied that date on the schedule since 1962. Many of the Nextel Cup Series teams are based within a stones throw of the track and consider it a "home game." Petty Enterprises is not located that close to LMS, but they still hold the track in a high regard. This is evident by the eight wins that Petty Enterprises' teams have garnered over the years.
Petty will be making his 797th Nextel Cup start this weekend. It will also mark his 51st start at LMS, a track where he has seen his share of success. Petty has one win, five top-five and 11 top-ten finishes in those 51 starts. He finished 25th in the 2006 Coca-Cola 600.
Petty currently sits 31st in Nextel Cup points
Comments from Petty as he prepares for Sunday's Coca-Cola 600:
"You know, I have often been asked what could be done to tweak the Coca-Cola 600. I don't think you do anything to it. It has a traditional date on the schedule, the length of the race is unique and it's a great venue. It is one of our crown jewel races. I have been fortunate enough to win it once. I would leave it alone.
"You have to take your hat off to Humpy Wheeler and the staff at Lowe's Motor Speedway. We all know about the changes that have been made to the racing surface over the recent years. Some of them have worked and some of them haven't. But, one thing that hasn't changed is the fact they are always looking to make sure they are putting on the best race possible, for the fans and the teams.
"We had a really good race in the Nextel Open last Saturday. It was really just an extra test for us for the 600. The thing about the Coca-Cola 600 is that you have to be on top of your adjustments throughout the race. With the race starting in the day and ending at night, the track really changes. If you are strong in the day, that's great. But, you really need to work to be good under the lights. Billy (Wilburn, crew chief) is one of the best at calling a race. I feel confident in that respect.
"Our team has really been working their tails off this year. We are now seeing some positive results from that work. We are putting some distance between ourselves and the guys behind us in points. That is what we have to keep doing. I want to put the guys in the best position possible when I step out of the car in a couple of weeks. If we can get inside the top-30 in points, I will feel good about that."