Pocono II: Ken Schrader preview

'Always gotta remember - there aren't four turns at Pocono' Ken Schrader and the ...

'Always gotta remember - there aren't four turns at Pocono'

Ken Schrader and the #49 Schwan's Home Service Dodge return to the 2.5-mile Pocono (Penn.) Raceway for Sunday's Pennsylvania 500, the 20th race of the 2005 NASCAR Nextel Cup season.

Driver of the #49 Schwan's Home Service Dodge, Schrader is a native of Fenton, Mo. The busiest driver in major league motorsports, Schrader has raced and continues to race on virtually every type of speedway in virtually every type of race car. In 2005, Schrader plans to once again race over 100 races and throughout his career has raced at over 310 different racetracks around the nation. Schrader continues a winning career with BAM Racing, which fields the Schwan's Home Service team.

The team is owned by Beth Ann and Tony Morgenthau, investors from Coral Gables, Fla. Ms. Morgenthau, whose initials make up the name of the team -- BAM Racing -- is the only female car owner in motorsports to become involved without prior family connections. General manager Eddie Jones is a veteran of the NASCAR Nextel Cup wars, enjoying a championship career as a crew chief, mechanic and team leader. Crew chief David Hyder has over 20 years of racing experience both driving and as a chief mechanic.

The thoughts of Schwan's Home Service Dodge driver Ken Schrader heading into Pocono:

"We always look forward to going to Pocono. The track has been good to me over the years. We've won a few poles and had some good runs. Last month, we were pretty fast there, but we kind of got shuffled back a few spots right there at the end on the green-white-checkered deal. But, I've always enjoyed racing there."

"The track is about as unique as it gets. It's a triangle-- well, that right there makes it different from every other track we run at. Last month, my spotter kept saying 'turn four:' so, about the third or fourth time he said 'turn four,' I finally asked him, 'what track are you looking at?' Of course, he was talking about the final turn, which is usually turn four, but there aren't four turns at Pocono-- there are just the three."

"Pocono is pretty demanding track. It requires several different things that you have to prepare for. What I mean is some tracks are big horse-power tracks, others are big downforce-handling tracks, others are real tough on brakes; Pocono is all three. You need a car that handles so that you can stay on the bottom, set the nose, and then pick up the throttle quickly. You better have horse power in order to get down the long straightaways, then you better have good brakes in order to slow down, because the turns there are relatively flat. It takes the whole package to have a good car at Pocono."

"A lot of teams had tire problems the last time we went to Pocono. Fortunately, we didn't. David (Hyder, crew chief) always does a good job setting the car up to handle well, and he does it without putting too much stress on the tires. Some teams either run aggressive camber or start out with real low air pressure and it's tough for the tire to hold up over the course of a long run."

"Our goal is always to improve from race to race and to be better each trip back to a track. We've improved our finish each of the last four times at Pocono and anything less than that would be disappointing for the Schwan's Home Service team. I think that's definitely within reach and like always, I'm really looking forward to heading back to Pocono."

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Ken Schrader