Daytona II: Chip Ganassi Racing preview

David Stremme and the No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Team Facts: * Stremme and the Senators: On the heels of Stremme's recent visit to Capital Hill in May to support The Motorsports Coalition, two US Senators will be on hand Sunday morning in ...

David Stremme and the No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Team Facts:

* Stremme and the Senators: On the heels of Stremme's recent visit to Capital Hill in May to support The Motorsports Coalition, two US Senators will be on hand Sunday morning in Daytona to stop by and visit with Stremme, who took time to educate members of Congress on all the moving parts of the motorsports industry and the different pieces of legislation that can impact the sport as a whole. The Motorsports Coalition is a group comprised of motorsports sanctioning bodies, and was represented by a majority of the track presidents of NASCAR sanctioned venues, along with a NASAR NEXTEL Cup Series All-Star show car in Washington Tuesday.

* Hooters: Stremme will be at the local Hooters across from DIS on International Speedway Boulevard this Friday afternoon, July 6th from 1-2pm ET for a Coors Light promotion in advance of Saturday night's Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway.

* Standings Update: Stremme and the No. 40 Coors Light car finished 27th at New Hampshire last weekend after an alternator issue caused the car to lose voltage. The team slipped two spots to 25th in the NNCS point standings and is -462 markers back of the 12th and final transfer spot in the chase for the NEXTEL Cup.

* Chassis Selection: Crew Chief Steve Lane and the Coors Light team have selected #601 for this weekend's final restrictor plate race with the current NNCS stock car. Previously Stremme ran chassis #601 in the Daytona 500 this season where he started sixth and finished 11th -- his career-best finish at the time.

Reed Sorenson and the No. 41 Target Dodge Team Facts:

* Sorenson on the 4th of July: "The second Daytona race always falls near the Fourth. It's a little later this year because of some schedule changes, but it's the week of the Fourth and what a cool event. There's a lot of history surrounding this race and one that every driver has on his list to win. We had a solid run in February with the same car we're using this weekend, and our superspeedway program is very strong so I'm feeling pretty optimistic about the race on Saturday..."I was racing a lot on the Fourth of July growing up, so we didn't get to celebrate with the traditional family barbeque. It's a special holiday because it represents our independence. This is a great country we live in and I for one appreciate the men and women who made it possible for me to do the things I love, like racing for a living."

* Showing improvement: Sorenson and the Target team, along with the entire CGRFS organization are showing signs of improvement, especially with the Car of Tomorrow (CoT). Sorenson recorded his career-best starting position (third) in last weekend's event at New Hampshire International Speedway (NHIS). His previous best was a seventh (Dover -- Sept. '06 & Las Vegas '07) in the old style car. Sorenson's CGRFS teammate Juan Pablo Montoya recently recorded his first series win at Sonoma on June 24 and followed that up with a fifth-place qualifying effort at NHIS -- both CoT races. Sorenson's Target Dodge was extremely fast in the early stages of the race until experiencing suspension problems. Prior to the issue, the team had a firm grip on the setup and the car continued to be one of the fastest on the track after some repair work.

* Points Update: The Target team is currently 27th in the overall NEXTEL Cup Series standings. The team is 57 points out of 25 and 196 outside of the top 20.

* Chassis: Crew chief Jimmy Elledge and the Target team have selected chassis #602 for this weekend's race at DIS. This car Sorenson drove to a 13th-place finish in the season opener at the 2.5-mile superspeedway.

* Be Sure to Tune In: The Pepsi 400 is set to go green at 8 p.m. ET Saturday. The race will air live on TNT (6:30 p.m. ET), MRN radio and Sirius Satellite Radio channel 128.

Juan Pablo Montoya and the No. 42 Texaco Havoline Dodge Team Facts:

* Standings: Juan Pablo Montoya gained two spots in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup driver standings, while the Texaco/Havoline team gained one spot in the NEXTEL Cup owner standings following their 19th-place at Loudon last weekend. Montoya now sits 19th in the standings just 87 points out of 15th heading into Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Montoya and the team now sit 324 points out of 12th -- the final transfer spot into the Chase for the Nextel Cup -- with eight races remaining before the Chase begins.

* Finally: The restrictor-place race this weekend at Daytona International Speedway will be the first NEXTEL Cup track that Montoya has previously competed at with his No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge. Montoya ran in the season-opening Daytona 500 in February where he started the event from the 36th starting spot and drafted his way up to 19th before the checkered flag fell.

* Daytona: Montoya kicked off Texaco/Havoline's 20th Anniversary in NASCAR with a hard fought 19th-place finish at the Daytona 500. He started from the 36th position, battled a tight race car, lost every gear except fourth and nearly missed several multi-car incidents before bringing the No. 42 Dodge Charger home in the top 20.

* Rookie Race: Montoya leads David Ragan in the NEXTEL Cup Raybestos® Rookie standings by 14 points (190-176) after the 17th race of the 2007 NEXTEL Cup season. Montoya has captured rookie of the race honors in seven races so far this season. Davey Allison, driving the Texaco/Havoline car, is the only Raybestos® Rookie since 1975 to lead the most laps in the Pepsi 400. He led the 1987 event twice for 32 laps.

* Chassis: Crew Chief Donnie Wingo and the Texaco/Havoline team have selected chassis #603 for the third restrictor plate race of the season. The team previously ran this chassis in the Daytona 500, but did not run this car at Talladega/

* Opportunity of a Lifetime: Chevron Global Marketing announced the kickoff of the Texaco 42 Days of Racing promotion with a grand prize race package featuring a trip to the final six stock car races of the 2007 season and a chance to meet Montoya.

* Sirius-ly: Montoya and the team will be featured on Sirius Satellite Radio's Driver2Crew Chatter. Driver2Crew Chatter puts fans in the car and in the pits. Fans can listen to Montoya's radio communication with Crew Chief Wingo, Spotter Tab Boyd and the rest of the Texaco/Havoline Team on channel 181. Listen in every Monday at 5 p.m. ET on channel 128 for the "Juan Pablo Montoya Report." Montoya provides exclusive updates on the No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Team; gives post-race downloads and shares his own personal experiences on his jump full time into the NEXTEL Cup Series.

-credit: cgr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing