Loudon: Jeremy Mayfield preview

RACING AT NEW HAMPSHIRE "I really kind of like New Hampshire. I don't know why. I've had some decent runs there in the past and I really don't mind it. You know there are just some guys that like certain tracks and some guys that don't. Everyone...


"I really kind of like New Hampshire. I don't know why. I've had some decent runs there in the past and I really don't mind it. You know there are just some guys that like certain tracks and some guys that don't. Everyone has their own driving style. I kind of like this place. I don't know what the new surface will be like but I'm sure it will only make the racing better. It's just a flat, one-mile track. It kind of reminds me of the short tracks that I grew up racing around Kentucky."


"It's an even kind of a track. I mean it doesn't have a lot of weird things going on like a dogleg or anything like that. It's a pretty straightforward kind of racetrack. It's got two straightaways and getting into the corners is pretty much the same all the way around. I think it can be a pretty good little race especially for us. We've got so much momentum going right now. I'm just looking forward to any race no matter where we are."


"I've told everyone the past few months this team has been clicking. We've got our communication where it needs to be. I know what I need to do to tell Kenny (Francis, team director) and Josh (Browne, team engineer) what I am looking for in a car. We're all really gelling and you can see that on the racetrack now. I think we've had it for awhile but it's just all kind of come together. We've had three consecutive top-10 finishes and that's great. We need to take it to the next level now. There's no reason we can't be finishing in the top-five and winning a race here soon."


Jeremy Mayfield is scheduled to drive chassis No. 19, which he raced at Martinsville and Richmond this year. The chassis also ran at New Hampshire (a) and Richmond (a,b) last year. Mayfield's highest finish in the car was 5th last year at Richmond (a).


This weekend's race marks Mayfield's 292nd career start in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series and 15th career visit to New Hampshire Int'l Speedway.


Mayfield's best finish at New Hampshire Int'l Speedway is eighth place, which he earned in the 2000 New England 300, starting from the 16th position. Mayfield's best start at the track is third, which he earned in the 2001 New England 300.


Mayfield has finished in the top-15 in five consecutive races (15th Pocono, 13th Michigan, 10th Infineon, eighth Daytona, 10th Chicago) with an average finish of 11.2.

* NEW HAMPSHIRE RACE NOTES EVENT START FINISH STATUS LAPS LED NOTES 2002 New Hampshire 300 9 24 Running - - 2002 New England 300 14 19 Running - -


Falling rain played a key role in helping to shorten last year's New Hampshire 300. Mayfield was the highest qualifying Dodge, rolling off in ninth place. He spent the first 20 laps running in the top-10 until the caution for rain came out. He restarted his No. 19 Dodge in 10th place on lap 29. Mayfield reported tight conditions with the car and the Dew Crew worked to adjust the No. 19 Dodge, taking out a wedge and making air pressure adjustments. Mayfield never got the feel he was looking for in the car, but he and the Dew Crew worked together to maintain track position. Mayfield came in for the final time on lap 154 and took four tires and fuel, setting up a duel to the finish as the rain threatened to end the day's event. Mayfield finished in 24th place.


The 400-mile race at Chicagoland Speedway last week was the fourth top-10 finish of the season for Mayfield and his No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge. Mayfield started the race in fifth place just behind his teammate Bill Elliott and was soon tucked up right behind him in the third spot in the opening laps. He fought a tight handling racecar early on and lost a few spots before he came in for an air pressure and trackbar adjustment on lap 54. By lap 62 his No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge was handling on the loose side. On lap 72 he pitted and made another trackbar and wedge adjustment. By lap 183 he reported that his Dodge was the best it had been all day. By lap 196 he had moved into the 14th spot and continued to gain ground. He was in the seventh spot by lap 199, but his Dodge began to tighten up. He managed to hold his own in the last 50 laps, which included the on-track incident on lap 215 that caused damage to his teammate's car. Kenny Francis (team director) made one last adjustment with less than 20 laps to go that kept Mayfield up front and put him in position to post his third consecutive top-10 finish and fifth consecutive top-15 finish. Mayfield jumps two spots in the Winston Cup points standings to 25th place, two points out of the next spot and 87 points out of the top-20.


Mayfield earned his seventh career pole position, and his first for Evernham Motorsports, in this year's Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway. The pole was Mayfield's third at Talladega, and makes him one of only three active drivers who have scored three or more poles at the track (Sterling Marlin - three, Bill Elliott - eight). The pole was Mayfield's first since starting up front in the Pop Secret 400 at North Carolina Speedway in October 2000. All seven of Mayfield's Bud Poles have been earned on superspeedways (Talladega, Darlington, Dover, Rockingham, and Texas).


Coming into the 2003 New England 300 at New Hampshire Int't Speedway Mayfield has made 291 starts, with seven poles (three at Talladega and one at Darlington, Dover, Rockingham, and Texas), three wins (two at Pocono, and one at California), 35 top-fives and 66 top-10s. His most recent win came at Pocono in June of 2000. He earned his most recent pole, and his first pole for Evernham Motorsports at the Aaron's 499 at Talladega on April 6th.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Bill Elliott , Jeremy Mayfield , Sterling Marlin