Ponoco: GM Racing preview

CHEVY RACING AT POCONO RACEWAY: -- JEFF CHEW, MARKETING MANAGER, NASCAR, CHEVY RACING: "We're looking forward to bringing the all-new 2010 Team Chevy Racing Display to Pocono Raceway. In the Midway, behind the main grandstands, fans can visit the...

CHEVY RACING AT POCONO RACEWAY: -- JEFF CHEW, MARKETING MANAGER, NASCAR, CHEVY RACING: "We're looking forward to bringing the all-new 2010 Team Chevy Racing Display to Pocono Raceway. In the Midway, behind the main grandstands, fans can visit the display where question-and-answer and autograph sessions will take place, and Chevrolet's 2010 lineup of award-winning cars and trucks will be on display. Plus, fans can stop by the Team Chevy Winner's Circle Photo Trailer, where they can get a 'green-screen' framed picture taken with their favorite Chevy driver."


KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 29 SHELL-PENNZOIL CHEVROLET -- POINT STANDINGS LEADER: "For me, the trickiest part of Pocono is the Tunnel Turn. You have to carry so much speed into that turn that there is not much room for error. The Tunnel Turn is so much harder to get through now then it used to be. A couple of years ago there was a flat curb there and you could lean on it a little bit if you needed to. Now, there is a big curb there and if you hit it you'll probably be forced up the race track, and the chances of hitting the wall are pretty high. Pocono has a lot of its own characteristics, to say the least. It's a 2.5-mile triangle-shaped race track that has three pretty tricky turns. Turn one is really bumpy, the Tunnel Turn has a pretty big curb and it is pretty easy to make a mistake there and turn three is one of the flattest turns we deal with on the NASCAR circuit. It definitely has its own unique challenges."

JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 DUPONT CHEVROLET -- 4TH IN STANDINGS: "All the turns are very unique and challenging in their own way and I think that's what makes Pocono so special. I've always said that the Tunnel Turn is one of my favorites but also one of my least favorites because when you hit it right, it's just so incredible and such a great feeling; and it's such a thrill to go through there. But when you hit it right, it's the most physical corner there is on the track because you lose so much momentum and time and you're hitting the steering wheel because you messed it up. And it's such a short corner, but it's really fast. I like that corner. But the most challenging one is probably the third turn where it's just really flat and really fast and it's really difficult to get it right.

"It's a fun track that really challenges the teams and engineers and there are a lot of different theories right now on what makes you go fast at a place like Pocono that might apply to Indianapolis. Everybody sort of uses it as a test session for Indianapolis because Indy is such an important race and so prestigious. You can't apply those long straightaways in that flat last corner to Indy. It seems like if you get yourself right there, it gives you a good opportunity to possibly find something for Indy. But it's always fun and challenging and I look forward to getting back there."

JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE'S CHEVROLET -- 7TH IN STANDINGS: "We just need to go out and focus on top 10's and top 5's. I think I was pushing it a little too hard in the 600 to try and stay on the lead lap -- first racing hard and damaging the car and then trying to stay on the lead lap. So we just need to get back to collecting points and come in with a clear mind and a good attitude for the Pocono race and log 500 miles and get a good finish out of it."

JEFF BURTON, NO. 31 CATERPILLAR CHEVROLET -- 8TH IN STANDINGS: "Pocono is a track where I don't have a lot of laps led and any wins. I've been in position a few times and it's a place where I think I overdrive it too much. I hope to be on the good side of things this weekend. We don't have good finishes there. It's probably one of my worst tracks as far as finishes are concerned. Our main struggle at Pocono is one of the three corners. We'll find two corners where we are good and then we'll have one corner where we are not so good. We haven't found the balance that will allow us to lay down lap times without sacrificing too much in one particular corner. The fun thing about Pocono and the difficult thing is that every corner is different. You have to be good in every corner and you can't sacrifice anything anywhere. Pocono is a very demanding race track physically and mentally. It's one of our toughest tests we have all year. It's hard. It has the longest front straightaway we go to. Turn one is really rough and slick and has a lot of bumps. The next straightway is really long, too, that leads into the tunnel turn, which I think is the most challenging corners in all of motorsports. Turn three is hard to get through because you typically have no grip there. Pocono is definitely a challenging race track."

MARK MARTIN, NO. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM/GODADDY.COM CHEVROLET -- 10TH IN STANDINGS: "Pocono is one of my top-five favorite racetracks. It's great to race on. And of course it's really, really different than any other track we go to. Pocono has its three distinctly different corners, a good amount of banking, and long straightaways. In order to do well there, you have to have big horsepower under the hood. Your car has to handle well through all three turns, if you can get it that good. It's a big challenge. Sometimes you have to sacrifice one corner in order to get the other two better. It's a tough place to conquer. I've had the fastest car there about five times. I just couldn't get to the start-finish line first! (LAUGHS.) Track position plays a huge role, of course. Then you add in fuel mileage, pit stops, the timing of cautions. So many elements have to go right to win a race. I just haven't been able to put the whole package together there. It's about putting your best foot forward and making your best effort. There's no doubt that this team will do that this weekend."

RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 39 HAAS AUTOMATION CHEVROLET -- 12TH IN STANDINGS: "Pocono is really all its own when it comes to racetracks. I've heard some people call it a "roval" in the past because it's a cross between a road course and an oval. There's just nothing like Pocono. It can be a long, grueling race, but it can be a lot of fun when your car is right, too. From my standpoint, I really like it. It's challenging. All three corners are different, the straightaways are different. I just look forward to it. It's one of my favorite racetracks, and honestly sometimes I think I like it because other people don't. I've always enjoyed the challenge of Pocono -- the three different corners, the long straightaways and different length straightaways. It's a lot of fun. I've had some success there and look forward to this weekend. As much as I like racing at Pocono, I know that, for a crew chief, the track is a challenge. Setting up the car to be fast at each of the three different ends is a big challenge for the teams. So the race and the track can be a nightmare for a crew chief. It's difficult to keep the car right. It really is a super-tough track, but we've had some good runs there and I'm looking forward to getting back."

CLINT BOWYER, NO. 31 CHEERIOS/HAMBURGER HELPER CHEVROLET -- 13TH IN STANDINGS: "The straightaways are so long and then you have tight corners. You have to woe your car down getting into the corners and that certainly takes a toll on the brakes. You have to have a good brake package and manage them so you can be there at the end of the race. At any of these big racetracks, the fuel strategy comes into play. Especially, with the three attempts at the green, white and checkered flag finishes. People are going to run out of fuel. It's going to happen. The whole field is going to be upset if someone sputters or runs out of fuel. Somebody is going to look back and think we should have come in to top off and then others are going to have that play into their hand by getting themselves a win. I certainly see that happening at one of these bigger race tracks during these next two months. We definitely have some good tracks coming up for us. We had a good run the last time around at Pocono. We're confident that we can have strong runs at both Pocono races. We've seen some teams struggle there in the past and we need to capitalize on those opportunities."

JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 MCDONALD'S CHEVROLET -- 15TH IN STANDINGS: "Pocono is a unique track that we visit twice a year and it's the only triangular racetrack we compete on all season long. Due to the unique layout of the track, it forces us to look at a few different aspects of our race car for this weekend's race. Horsepower is the key at Pocono and you need to have a fast and powerful car since there are three different straightaways. We've had really fast race cars this year, and Juan had a couple of really good finishes at Pocono last season. So, I'm really looking forward to seeing what we'll be able to accomplish this weekend in our McDonald's Chevrolet."

TONY STEWART, NO. 14 OLD SPICE/OFFICE DEPOT CHEVROLET, 16TH IN STANDINGS -- DEFENDING WINNER OF JUNE POCONO RACE: "All three corners are different -- that's the most challenging part. It seems like you can always get your car good in two of the three corners, but the guys who are contending for the win are the guys who can get their car good for all three corners, which is very hard to do. It seems like if we can get our car to go through the tunnel turn well, then we're normally able to get it to go through the rest of the racetrack well. The tunnel turn seems to be our toughest turn on the racetrack. Getting through turn two and the last corner of the racetrack that's flat, long and sweeping -- those seem to be the toughest two corners to get through. And if you're a little bit off, you're a bunch off. If there's a guy who can get all three of those corners right, then that's the guy who's going to win the race.

"Last year I knew it was big when we were there in victory lane, obviously. Getting the first one at Charlotte (the non-points Sprint All-Star Challenge) was a huge accomplishment for the organization, but that first official points win was big, too. The feeling was the same as it was in Charlotte, but it was different because you knew it was a points race. It just means a lot. It means so much to a lot of people because it's been a long road to get this organization to where it is. Everybody put a lot of hard work into getting this program where it's at, so it was nice to get to victory lane for a points race."

DALE EARNHARDT JR., NO. 88 NATIONAL GUARD/AMP ENERGY CHEVROLET -- 17TH IN STANDINGS: "Pocono is one of the more difficult tracks we go to because all three of the corners are so different. It can be tough to get your car to handle good through all three of the turns. The tunnel turn (Turn 2) is probably the most challenging corner of the year."

JUAN PABLO MONTOYA, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET -- 20TH IN STANDINGS: "Pocono is a long race. It is one of those places where you think, we should just run 400 miles there, you know? It almost makes the Coca-Cola 600 seem short! It's very challenging because it's really old asphalt and it's really bumpy and every corner is different. So to get the car right, is really hard. I mean it's really hard. You've just got to learn to drive it where it's okay in a couple of turns. If you can get it good in two out of three (turns), you're good. Last time we were there, we ran really well. It is race track that normally hasn't been that good for me but, I have changed a lot of my driving style the last year and that has helped me a lot. Hopefully we can go back there and get some good results."

-source: gm racing

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Series NASCAR Cup