Richmond: Bobby Labonte preview

BOBBY LABONTE CHEVY AMERICAN REVOLUTION 400 NOTES AND QUOTES HUNTERSVILLE, N.C., Tuesday, May 10, 2005 -- The following are Chevy American Revolution 400 pre-race notes and quotes for Bobby Labonte, driver of the No. 18 Boniva® (ibandronate...

BOBBY LABONTE CHEVY AMERICAN REVOLUTION 400 NOTES AND QUOTES

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C., Tuesday, May 10, 2005 -- The following are Chevy American Revolution 400 pre-race notes and quotes for Bobby Labonte, driver of the No. 18 Boniva® (ibandronate sodium) Chevrolet for Joe Gibbs Racing.

CHEVY AMERICAN REVOLUTION 400 PRE-RACE NOTES:

* Boniva® (ibandronate sodium), a new medicine for the treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis, will serve as primary sponsor for the No. 18 Chevrolet at Richmond.

* Labonte will attempt to start his 25th NEXTEL Cup race at Richmond International Raceway. He has never won a NEXTEL Cup race at the 75-of-a-mile track. .

* Labonte has four top-five and eight top-10 finishes at RIR. He has finished in the top-six in three of the last four events at the track.

* On Sept. 9, 1993 at Richmond, Labonte won his first career Bud Pole in the NEXTEL Cup Series. While it is his only NEXTEL Cup pole at RIR, he has started in the top 10 in 12 of the 24 events (50 percent).

* In the spring of 2004, Labonte 27th and finished third at RIR. In the fall he started 18th and finished 16th, one lap done.

* Labonte is 33rd in the 2005 NEXTEL Cup point standings and has endured miserable luck throughout the season. He suffered engine problems at Daytona and Martinsville and was involved in early accidents at Las Vegas, Bristol, Texas. At Atlanta and Talladega, he was involved in early accidents and then experienced engine problems while attempting to finish the race with a damaged race car. He has completed every lap in a race only three times (California, Phoenix and Darlington).

* The primary car for the Chevy American Revolution 400 is chassis No. 84, which Labonte drove to third-place last spring at Richmond. He started fourth and finished sixth with the car in April at Phoenix. The best finish for the car came in spring 2004 at Martinsville when Labonte finished second. In 2003, the car was driven by Labonte in fall races at New Hampshire (16th) and Martinsville (41st). It was also driven at Phoenix (36th, accident). Other races in 2004 included: New Hampshire, July (17th), Richmond, September (16th) and Martinsville, October (18th).

* The back-up car is chassis No. 93, a new car that has never been raced before. However, it served as a back-up this season at Martinsville, Phoenix and Richmond.

PRESS CONFERENCE INFORMATION:

* Joe Gibbs, owner of Joe Gibbs Racing and head coach of the Washington Redskins, will meet with the media at 4:45 p.m. Saturday, May 14 in the media center. Virginia Tech Head Coach Frank Beamer will be available along with Gibbs.

CHEVY AMERICAN REVOLUTION 400 PRE-RACE QUOTE:

BOBBY LABONTE (No. 18 Boniva® (ibandronate sodium) Chevrolet; 2000 NASCAR Champion): "We've run pretty well at the short-tracks this year. At Bristol we were in the top-10 and got caught up in an accident and then were in the top-three at Martinsville and had mechanical problems. We got a sixth-place at Phoenix, so I feel good heading into Richmond. We've done pretty good there lately. Qualifying is important everywhere we go, but nowhere more important than at the short-tracks. The cars can get strung out so quickly and a if the leader is setting a torrid pace right from the drop of the green-flag, then it's not hard to lose a lap early. Being able to start up front is a huge plus at places like Richmond, Bristol and Martinsville. We've got Bovina® on the car this week, so hopefully, we can give those guys a good run."

-jgr-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Bobby Labonte
Teams Joe Gibbs Racing