Homestead: David Gilliland preview

Gilliland Caps Season with 150th Cup Start Taco Bell Team Looks for Strong Finish to Solid Season Statesville, N.C. (November 16, 2010) - David Gilliland and the Taco Bell Ford team look to end their first season together with a strong run at ...

Gilliland Caps Season with 150th Cup Start
Taco Bell Team Looks for Strong Finish to Solid Season

Statesville, N.C. (November 16, 2010) - David Gilliland and the Taco Bell Ford team look to end their first season together with a strong run at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway in this weekend's Ford 400. The No. 37 crew might be a "young" team - having only been together for several months - but the man behind the wheel will be taking the green flag for the 150th time in his Sprint Cup Series career.

That career has brought Gilliland to the 1.5-mile oval four times for Sprint Cup races. His best finish among those starts is 27th.

Comments from Taco Bell Driver David Gilliland on Homestead-Miami Speedway, His 150th Sprint Cup Start and the Team's 2010 Season:

"My crew chief, Peter Sospenzo, asked me a couple weeks ago what track I felt was most similar to Homestead that we could compare notes with. And I don't really know of anything that it compares to. It's a really fun track. I like it. It's wide and it's pretty easy to drive. But it's definitely a little bit different than the other mile-and-a-half's that we go to. I enjoy racing there. We've run well there in the past, and hopefully we can bring something there that's going to be competitive. I feel like we will. I feel like Peter's got a good plan on going there.

"It's a race where, when you get done with it, you take a deep breath - and actually catch your breath - from the season. Obviously, it's our last race of the year, so we want to have a good run. You never want to go into the off-season with a bad taste in your mouth from wrecking out of the race or having a mechanical problem or anything like that. You want to go out on a high note.

"Especially with our race last week in Phoenix, we want to make sure we run well at Homestead. We had a brake issue toward the end of the race that took us out and we couldn't finish. Obviously, that was disappointing. So we definitely want to make sure we have a good run here for the last race of the season.

"It's hard to believe Homestead will be my 150th start. I can still remember going to the track as a kid with my dad, just in awe of everything. I'm sure I never thought I'd be standing here today talking about a five-year Cup career. But I'm very lucky. For every guy racing in the Sprint Cup Series today, there are thousands more who want to be in his shoes. So I know I'm fortunate. And I hope to have at least 150 more starts.

"This Taco Bell team has been through a lot this year. We came together just a few weeks before the seasoned opened in Daytona, and then we did the crew chief and team switch during the summer. And we had some good runs and bad runs. But we had some really good performances on track and some weekends where we took a bad car and turned it around into a pretty good car. So, even though we didn't have the preparation that some other teams had, I think we have an awful lot to be proud of for what we accomplished this season."

-source: front row motorsports

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers David Gilliland