As Pre-Chase Heats Up, Newman, Army Team Taking Fight to Pocono LONG POND, Pa. (July 27, 2010) -- The Chase clock is ticking and no one needs to tell the No. 39 U.S. Army team and driver Ryan Newman what they need to do in order to be one of the...
As Pre-Chase Heats Up, Newman, Army Team Taking Fight to Pocono
LONG POND, Pa. (July 27, 2010) -- The Chase clock is ticking and no one needs to tell the No. 39 U.S. Army team and driver Ryan Newman what they need to do in order to be one of the 12 teams competing for the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup championship.
"We're well aware of our position and well aware of what we need to do," stated Newman, who has been a Chase participant three times, including last year -- his first season with Stewart-Haas Racing.
With six pre-Chase races remaining, including Sunday's event at Pocono Raceway, Newman is currently in 15th place, 147 points from 12th, the cutoff for making the Chase.
Though it may appear to be a daunting task to make up 147 points in six races, crew chief Tony Gibson emphatically says that no one on the No. 39 team is even remotely thinking of a concession speech.
"If anyone feels that we're too far out to make the Chase then they haven't been closely watching this team," said Gibson. "We have fought back from adversity so many times this season to post respectable finishes, including a gutsy effort a few days ago at the Brickyard 400."
What happened Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway did indeed demonstrate the resolve and never-give-up attitude of the No. 39 team. Before the Brickyard 400 was 12-laps old, Newman suffered two flat tires within a few laps of each other, fell two laps down and was positioned at the rear of the field.
But thanks to a sound pit strategy, Newman got back on the lead lap with 11 green-flag laps remaining. In those final 11 laps, Newman drove with a fierce tenacity and picked up six spots to finish 17th.
"That was just another example of how this team operates like our Soldiers," said Newman. "We give 110 percent all the time and never quit. We represent more than one million Soldiers and there's no way that we're going to disappoint them due to a lack of effort or a defeatist attitude. We're going to keep on pounding away and fight for every point. Don't count us out."
The good news for the Army team is that Newman has had plenty of success at the 2.5-mile Pocono Raceway. In 17 starts, he has garnered one win, six top-fives, seven top-10s and two poles. He is looking for similar success in the Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500.
"We weren't as good the last time at Pocono as we have been in the past," noted Newman, who finished 14th in the June Pocono race. "We just got caught a little bit behind, but I am confident that has been rectified and we will be challenging come Sunday. I have many fond memories about Pocono, including winning there in the ARCA series. It's a special place in my book and I would like to make it even more special by producing another strong finish."