Bobby Labonte: I have a really good understanding of what Richard Petty has meant to our sport because I come from a racing family myself. He is one of the guys that helped make the dream of growing up to become a racecar driver a reality for a...
I have a really good understanding of what Richard Petty has meant to our sport because I come from a racing family myself. He is one of the guys that helped make the dream of growing up to become a racecar driver a reality for a lot of kids. I'm so proud to be a part of the 50th anniversary this weekend and honored to carry the 50th Anniversary paint scheme on the hood of the #43. Everyone, especially NASCAR and the folks at Chicagoland Speedway, have jumped on board to help us out this weekend with doing stuff to honor 'The King'. It's going to be a lot of fun.
I've been fortunate in my career and I've been able to do a lot of things that I didn't foresee happening. Driving the No. 43 falls into that category. It's the winningest number in NASCAR history. That's pretty spectacular. It's an honor to go out there every weekend and compete in that number. But when you are associated with 'The King' you have to honor his appreciation of the fans as well. That's one of the best parts.
Speaking of the #43, I've been pretty happy with how we've run the past two weeks. We're not going to be satisfied until we get back to Victory Lance, but I feel like the team is coming together. There is not a harder working group of guys on pit road. It's obvious that they want to win just as much as I do. We have some momentum going right now and it's something I think we can go to Chicago and build on.
* Labonte's highest finish at Chicagoland is twelfth, which came in 2006.
* He has competed at the track only twice under the Petty Enterprises banner. His average qualifying position for those two starts is ninth.
* In seven events at Chicagoland, Labonte has completed 1,716 of 1,872 laps (91.7%) including four laps led.
* Labonte's average start at the track is 15.6 and average finish is 22.3.
* This weekend the #43 Dodge is carrying the Richard Petty's 50th Anniversary logo to honor the anniversary of 'The King's' first race.
* Labonte is currently 19th in points. His recent 10th-place and 13th-place finishes have moved him up four positions in the standings over the past two weeks.