Fontana II: Dodge Motorsports preview

DODGE IN THE CHASE * Kurt Busch is currently fifth in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings after his 11th-place finish in Kansas last weekend. He posted top-10 finishes in the first two Chase events -- New Hampshire (sixth) and Dover ...


* Kurt Busch is currently fifth in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings after his 11th-place finish in Kansas last weekend. He posted top-10 finishes in the first two Chase events -- New Hampshire (sixth) and Dover (fifth).

* Kasey Kahne is 11th in the Chase standings, moving up one spot after finishing sixth at Kansas. He finished eighth the previous week at Dover.

* Two Dodge drivers (Jeremy Mayfield and Ryan Newman) were in the inaugural Chase in 2004.

* In 2005, three Dodge drivers (Mayfield, Newman and Rusty Wallace) made the Chase field with Newman winning the opener at New Hampshire.

* Kasey Kahne was the lone Dodge driver in the 2006 Chase field. He finished eighth in the final Chase standings.

* The Chase field was expanded from 10 to 12 drivers in 2007. Kurt Busch was the lone Dodge representative; he finished seventh in the final standings.

* There were no Dodges in the 2008 Chase field.


* Busch started fourth, led once and finished fifth in the spring event at California this year.

* In 14 starts at California, Busch has one win, four top-five, and six top-10 finishes.

* Busch has three poles at California including a sweep of the No. 1 spot in 2006.

* Busch has completed all but four of the 3,505 laps run in Sprint Cup competition at California and led 226.

* Busch is making his fourth Chase appearance and second driving a Dodge.

* Average start: 12 Average finish: 12.9


* Kahne started 22nd and finished 12th in the spring event at California this year.

* In all 11 starts at California, Kahne has one win, three top-five and seven top-10 finishes.

* Kahne has led 268 laps at California including 130 of the 250-lap event in 2006 en route to victory. He has led laps in six of the 11 Sprint Cup races he's competed in at the two-mile track.

* Kahne won six races in 2006 and finished eighth in the final standings in his only other Chase appearance.

* Kahne has a driver rating of 97.3, eighth-best among Cup drivers.

* Average start: 9.4 Average Finish: 13.0


* Three current Dodge drivers have won a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway. Kurt Busch (04/27/03), Elliott Sadler (09/05/04), and Kasey Kahne (09/03/06).

* Kasey Kahne recorded the lone Dodge victory at the two-mile, D-shaped oval in 2006 when he started ninth en route to his fifth win of the season.

* Dodge has earned four poles at Auto Club Speedway: (Kurt Busch -- 3, Kasey Kahne -- 1).

* Elliott Sadler's last Sprint Cup victory came at Fontana (09/05/04).


Kurt Busch, No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge

"What you did before the Chase kicked in is ancient history now. You have to be bringing your 'A game' to the track each and every week. You have to be leading laps to get the bonus points and put the numbers on the board at the end of the day."

Kasey Kahne, No. 9 Budweiser Dodge

"I think we run pretty well in these upcoming Chase races. We have as good a shot as anybody at these tracks because they're tracks I enjoy and we've always raced pretty well at. If you have an issue, you lose points. If I didn't have an issue (in New Hampshire), I think that I would have run in the top 10 and these upcoming races we can do the same thing. We have a great package for most of these tracks. I think we'll do it; we just need to keep pulling it together and get these points back. I think we have a shot at getting a lot of them back."

Elliott Sadler, No. 19 Stanley Dodge

"I'm excited to be heading out to California a little later this year. The last few times we've come out here for the second race it's been very, very hot and the track is extremely slick. This time the temperatures should be a little more reasonable and I'm excited to see how the cars handle on the track. We should see some very good side-by-side racing."

David Stremme, No. 12 Penske Racing Dodge

"Auto Club Speedway is a great track. You can race two- and three-wide all day. If your car is not working on the bottom of the track, you can move to the high side and try the upper groove. I have been known to run the top side of the race track, so Auto Club Speedway fits me perfectly."

Sam Hornish Jr., No. 77 Mobil 1 Dodge

"We are anxious to return to Fontana and hopefully improve on our result there in February. We had a pretty good race car, but our finish didn't really reflect it. It's a long race, so you have to be patient and position yourself to race hard at the end when it counts."

Reed Sorenson, No. 43 Rosie's Organic Chicken Dodge

"I think we ran almost 100 consecutive green flag laps (in Fontana) in February. That means you have to start up front and it doesn't give you a whole lot of time to work on the car during pit stops, so you better get it right if you want a good finish."

AJ Allmendinger, No. 44 Dassault Systems Dodge

"You always want to do well in front of your family and friends. That's what this weekend will be for me out in California and the next weekend will be for everyone in our sport when we race in Charlotte. It's like having back-to-back home games if you are a football team."

-credit: dodge motorsports

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeremy Mayfield , Rusty Wallace , Kurt Busch , Ryan Newman , Kasey Kahne , David Stremme , Elliott Sadler , Reed Sorenson , Sam Hornish Jr.
Teams Team Penske