Crew Chief Club at Michigan

Crew Chief Club at the Kmart 400 Event: Kmart 400 When: Sun., June 13 at 1:00 p.m. EDT on CBS Where: Michigan Speedway (2-mile oval) · Together, Jimmy Makar, Larry McReynolds, Todd Parrott and Robin Pemberton have led their drivers to...

Crew Chief Club at the Kmart 400

Event:  Kmart 400
When:  Sun., June 13 at 1:00 p.m. EDT on CBS
Where:  Michigan Speedway (2-mile oval)

· Together, Jimmy Makar, Larry McReynolds, Todd Parrott and Robin Pemberton have led their drivers to 68 wins, 375 top-five finishes, 596 top-10 finishes and 70 poles prior to this Sunday's Kmart 400 at Michigan Speedway.

· The spring race at Michigan marks the one year anniversary of McReynolds becoming the head-wrench for Mike Skinner.

· Pemberton and his Penske Racing South team hold both the track and event record at the spring Michigan event. Rusty Wallace completed the 1996 Miller 400 in two hours, 24 minutes and 23 seconds at an average speed of 166.033 mph.

· McReynolds has back-to-back wins in the spring event, both with the late Davey Allison (1991 and 1992).

· The Crew Chief Club has four wins and two poles in this event. The wins were provided by Pemberton and Wallace in 1996, Makar and Bobby Labonte in 1995 and McReynolds and Allison in 1992 and 1991. The poles were provided by Parrott and Dale Jarrett in 1997 and McReynolds and Allison in 1992.

· In last year's Miller Lite 400, the Crew Chief Club finished in the following order: Parrott/Jarrett Start: 2nd Finish: 2nd Status: Running Makar/Labonte Start: 17th Finish: 7th Status: Running Pemberton/Wallace Start: 3rd Finish: 17th Status: Running McReynolds/Skinner Start: 41st Finish: 29th Status: Running · Crew Chief Club souvenirs are available on the Chevrolet and Ford merchandise trailers. Fans can also log-on to the Crew Chief Club at their official website, www.crewchiefclub.com.

HOW DO YOU PREPARE YOUR RACE CAR FOR 400 MILES AT MICHIGAN?

Jimmy Makar - Interstate Batteries Pontiac of Bobby Labonte - "Michigan is kind of a tricky place because you've got to run fast and you've got to keep the car free to run fast. You can't be tight at Michigan because you eat up a lot of the race track exiting the corners and that scrubs off a lot of speed. So, you've got to carry your speed up off the corner to be able to run fast. It's a delicate balance between the speed that we carry and how free the car is."

Larry McReynolds - Lowe's Home Improvement Chevrolet of Mike Skinner - "Besides Daytona and Talladega, Michigan is one of the larger race tracks we go to. Everything is a factor at Michigan. You've got to have an awfully strong engine because you're on the gas a lot. So, good bottom-end and top-end horsepower are extremely critical and important in running fast. In qualifying, we really tighten our car up, as it seems to run loose when we qualify. But when we run the race, we free the car up. It seems the longer we run at Michigan, the more the front end won't turn and the car will just get pushier and pushier - especially on long runs. Looking back, races at Michigan have been won and lost by pit strategy and fuel mileage. Michigan is one of those places where long green flag runs seem to happen every time we go there, and teams that get good fuel mileage seem to be teams that end up in victory lane. It's a 200-lap race. That means you really need to be able to make that race on three stops, which is lap 50, lap 100 and lap 150. A lot of teams will be borderline in being able to run 50 laps on fuel. A lot of them will be down in the 46-47 lap range, and should the race go green the entire time, there will be some teams who will have to make one extra stop."

Todd Parrott - Ford Quality Care Service/Ford Credit Ford of Dale Jarrett - "Michigan is a lot like California. We'll have a car without much downforce and a little less drag because we tend to lay the spoiler down a bit more at Michigan. The corners are rather sweeping so you need to handle well through them. We've always raced well at Michigan so we're looking forward to going there. Obviously, we want to perform well there because it's in our sponsor's backyard, but there's really no more pressure than there is anywhere else."

Robin Pemberton - Miller Lite Ford of Rusty Wallace - "We've tried different things at Michigan over the years. But, Michigan is Michigan and it's been the same race track for a number of years and the competition is greater. We'll just have to give 110%."

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Jarrett , Bobby Labonte , Rusty Wallace , Mike Skinner , Davey Allison
Teams Team Penske