Fontana II: Jamie McMurray preview

Jamie McMurray, No. 42 Home123/Texaco/Havoline Dodge Home123 Team Fast Facts: * Race for the Chase: Jamie McMurray and the No. 42 Team slipped two positions to 10th in the standings for the 2005 "Chase for the NEXTEL Cup" after cutting a tire...

Jamie McMurray, No. 42 Home123/Texaco/Havoline Dodge

Home123 Team Fast Facts:

* Race for the Chase: Jamie McMurray and the No. 42 Team slipped two positions to 10th in the standings for the 2005 "Chase for the NEXTEL Cup" after cutting a tire in the closing laps at Bristol Motor Speedway last weekend. However, they are only 12 points out of 10th and just 62 out of eighth heading into California. There are only two races remaining before the cut off for "The Chase".

* Paint Scheme: The No. 42 Dodge will sport the Home123 paint scheme this weekend for the final time this season. Home123 is one of the country's largest providers of home mortgage loans. Headquartered in Irvine, Calif., Home123 is a subsidiary of New Century Financial Corporation, a publicly traded company (NYSE: NEW). Since being founded in 1995, Home123 has originated over $70 billion in mortgage loans. To find our more about Home123 or New Century, please visit www.Home123.com or www.ncen.com.

Home123 recently announced it's plans to sponsor a fourth Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates NEXTEL Cup Series entry in 2006 with Casey Mears as its driver.

* Gettin' It Done in California: McMurray has the best average finish (seventh) of any driver in the last four NEXTEL Cup Series events at California. He has three top-five finishes in four starts at the 2-mile speedway. His other finish was 15th.

* Chassis: Crew Chief Donnie Wingo and the Home123 Team have selected chassis #208 for this weekend's race at California Speedway. This is the same car McMurray drove to a 20th-place finish at Michigan on Aug. 21.

* Crucial Testing: McMurray and crew tested at Richmond International Raceway on Monday in preparation for the upcoming event at the track on Sept. 10. The race marks the last event before the top-10 teams are set to compete for the 2005 Championship.

* Softball Champs: The Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates softball team, sponsored by Texaco/Havoline, beat Hendrick Motorsports last week to claim the 2005 Totally Racing Softball League Championship.
www.racecityresumes.com/softball/

* California Native: Scott Myers, shock specialist and front tire carrier for the No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Team, hails from Modesto, Calif.

Jamie McMurray on California:

"For me to say this is an important weekend for us would be an understatement. The way I see it, this is a make or break race in terms of getting into 'The Chase'. A bad finish will pretty much eliminate us. We're only 12 points out of 10th, but the guys we are trying to beat have been running strong lately. It's imperative that we either maintain or move ahead of them at California so we have a shot at getting in after Richmond.

"Everyone on this team is incredibly focused. There is no doubt in my mind that we are capable of getting into this deal and then competing for the title, we just need a little luck on our side. It looked as though we were going to end up really good at Bristol last week and then we cut a tire with about 25 laps to go. That sort of thing has been happening to us all year.

"We've run well at California in the past and I'm expecting the same this weekend. I know they guys will put a solid car under me, so we'll just need to get ourselves a good starting position and keep ourselves in contention by staying out of trouble, making the right adjustments and having solid pit strategy."

-cgr-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jamie McMurray , Chip Ganassi , Felix Sabates
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing , Hendrick Motorsports