Michigan II: Jeremy Mayfield preview

RUNNING AT MICHIGAN "Anymore it seems like track position and fuel mileage are becoming the keys to winning. You've got to have a good pit strategy with good pit stops all day long to stay up front. You can pretty much run wide-open at Michigan,...


"Anymore it seems like track position and fuel mileage are becoming the keys to winning. You've got to have a good pit strategy with good pit stops all day long to stay up front. You can pretty much run wide-open at Michigan, so you want to have some horsepower too. I like the racetrack. We had a good run here last time. We're ready to try and back it up this weekend in Dodge's backyard."


"I don't know who started that deal calling them cookie cutter race tracks, but I know what they're talking about. They're talking about the mile-and-a-half racetracks with the tri-oval. I like 'em. I don't think you can say there's a lot of them yet. It seems like we go to a lot of tracks like that, but they're all still different. Charlotte is a lot different from Chicago, and Chicago is a lot different from Kansas. You have to approach them differently. I don't really look at them as the same kind of racetrack. There are all different kinds of racetracks on the circuit that break up the series."


Mayfield is scheduled to drive chassis No. 51 which he drove for the first time at Indianapolis this year.



This weekend's race marks Mayfield's 296th career start in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series and 20th career visit to Michigan Int'l Speedway. Mayfield has two top-five and three top-10 finishes at the racetrack. He has led three Michigan races for a total of 88 laps.


Mayfield's best finish at Michigan Int'l Speedway is fourth, which he earned in the 2001 Kmart 400, starting from the ninth starting position. Mayfield's best start at the racetrack is fifth, where he began the 1999 Pepsi 400.


Mayfield started the 2003 Sirius Satellite Radio 400 from the 20th spot. On lap 10, Mayfield came in for a fuel only stop and was in the pits again on lap 38 for an air pressure adjustment. Mayfield reported few problems with his No. 19 Dodge throughout the day. He did report slightly tight conditions at various times on the racetrack but Kenny Francis (team director) and the rest of the Dew Crew were able to make minor adjustments throughout the race to make Mayfield comfortable in his Dodge. He was sitting conveniently in the top-10 halfway through the race.

On lap 119, he pitted for four tires and 30 laps later at the midway point, he was still occupying a top-10 spot. In the closing laps, Mayfield pitted at various times with the rest of the leaders and was able to maintain his ground. With less than 10 laps to go, the team decided not to pit under caution for tires, opting for track position. Much of the field behind Mayfield pitted. The gamble cost Mayfield a few spots as the fresher tires caught up with him in the closing laps. He ended the day in 13th place.


Mayfield produced major gains at Watkins Glen Int'l last Sunday advancing from the 40th starting position to finish 16th. The Dew Crew helped him maintain track position during their stops and Mayfield kept his Dodge on the track in the notoriously tricky turns of Watkins Glen. After the field was shuffled during the final pit stop on lap 53, Mayfield found himself in 28th spot. By lap 76 he had moved into the 16th spot where he finished the race, 14 laps later.


This week Mayfield moves up a spot in the Winston Cup points race to the 29th position, 237 points out of 20th place


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 Michigan 400 at Michigan Int'l Speedway, Mayfield has made 295 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.

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Bill Elliott , Jeremy Mayfield , Sterling Marlin