NEMECHEK READY FOR REMATCH WITH CALIFORNIA SPEEDWAY FONTANA, Calif. (Aug. 29, 2005) -- It would be a gross understatement to say that Joe Nemechek has been eagerly awaiting his return trip to California Speedway for Sunday's running of the...
NEMECHEK READY FOR REMATCH WITH CALIFORNIA SPEEDWAY
FONTANA, Calif. (Aug. 29, 2005) -- It would be a gross understatement to say that Joe Nemechek has been eagerly awaiting his return trip to California Speedway for Sunday's running of the Sony HD 500.
In the February Nextel Cup race at California Speedway, Nemechek's 01 U.S. Army Chevrolet led the most laps (63) and was enjoying a comfortable lead when his engine let go with 70 laps remaining. Instead of a possible trip to Victory Lane, the Army team finished a miserable 39th.
"I feel like a heavyweight fighter who got knocked out and is anxious to get on with the rematch," said Nemechek. "Actually, it was more of a TKO for us at California Speedway. We had victory in sight, but in an instant we went from domination to being stunned in the garage with a broken motor."
Just as he had in February, Nemechek will have a brand new MB2 Motorsports-built car for this weekend's race.
"Any time we have a new car, I'm encouraged," said Nemechek. "When the highly-skilled engineers and fabrication department at MB2 build a car, it's on the cutting edge of technology. I am very confident that we'll have another stout hot rod in California."
Nemechek heads to Southern California with some momentum after finishing the past three races with a 9.6 average. He was ninth in Watkins Glen, eighth in Michigan and 12th in last week's race at Bristol Motor Speedway.
"Hopefully that luck cycle is starting to turn in our favor," said Nemechek, who currently sits 17th in the Nextel Cup driver standings.
Another reason Nemechek has an extra bounce in his step for the California race is because of the success he's had on the circuit's other two-mile track -- Michigan International Speedway -- where he had two top-10 finishes this season of sixth and eighth.
"We like the two-mile tracks," said Nemechek. "Again, it's just a matter of staying out of trouble and not having any fluke things happen to us. I'm not a bit concerned about performance. When you have a MB2-built car and a Hendrick engine you don't worry about power and performance."
Nemechek, known as Front Row Joe, has also enjoyed qualifying success at California Speedway. He claimed the pole at the track's inaugural Cup race in June of 1997. And in his last four California Cup races, he has had two top-five and four top-10 starts.
"I can't think of a better place and better time to start a positive streak," offered Nemechek. "We're going into California with a lot of confidence."