Phoenix: Bobby Labonte preview

There's Always "Tomorrow" Labonte heads to Phoenix Looking for Luck in "COT" This weekend, Bobby Labonte and the ...

There's Always "Tomorrow"
Labonte heads to Phoenix Looking for Luck in "COT"

This weekend, Bobby Labonte and the #43 Cheerios/Betty Crocker Dodge team head to the flat one-mile Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway for Saturday night's Subway 500. Saturday night's event is the first Saturday night point's race of the season.

Labonte heads to Phoenix looking for some 'racing luck' that eluded the team at Texas. Labonte and the #43 Cheerios/Betty Crocker Dodge team had what looked like a strong car before a piece of trash lodged into the grill of the car. Labonte was forced to pit and lose laps early in the race. Labonte, however, still enters Phoenix 23rd in championship points.

A turnaround can be expected by Labonte and the team this weekend. Labonte has an amazing 50% top-10 finishing rate at Phoenix. He recorded four top 10 finishes between 2004 and 2006. Labonte has three top five finishes and one pole at the track.

Comments from Labonte as he prepares for this weekend's Subway 500:

"Sure, we're looking forward to Phoenix. Texas wasn't what we were hoping for at the end of the day. I think we had a good opportunity, but bad luck cost us a shot of moving up. Hopefully Phoenix will be better for us.

"The 'Car of Tomorrow' has been a big change for us. It's different and it's kind of like changing teams making other big changes. It is certainly different. We have adapted to some things already, but we'll have to continue to adapt to some things. I'm sure we're going to learn more about the car this weekend. Phoenix is a lot different than Martinsville and Bristol. We'll have our challenges, but so will everyone else.

"We might see the same thing. I know we need to see good racing. That's what the fans in the stands pay to see and the fans coming to the races see. They want to see good racing. We want to be able to put on a good show. I think we're learning about these cars and how they handle. Once we do that, we'll see some good races. I think everyone will have good cars.

"It's tough to think that anyone has a 'perfect' Car of Tomorrow car yet. I think there are some guys that have been pretty tough, but we'll see what happens at Phoenix. It's a different track and Darlington after that will be a big challenge too. The good part is that we are all in the same boat. We are all searching for the best way to setup these cars.

"We feel good about the track. Phoenix is a great track. There is plenty of room to race, places to pass and I've had good finishes. If you have good finishes, it's a good track. We're looking to get back to some good finishes and start a streak. It gets a little old when you have a few weeks of bad luck. We'll take something new.

"I guess that's how we're looking at Phoenix. It's time to get some better race finishes and it's another challenge with the Car of Tomorrow. We want to have a good race for everyone with the Car of Tomorrow. A good race, everyone goes home happy. The fans buy the Cheerios, buy the Coca-Cola's, stay at the Super 8 Motels. We want to continue to make them happy.

-credit: pr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Bobby Labonte