Roush Racing Loudon preview

ROUSH RACING New Hampshire International Speedway, Sep. 15-17 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series: Sylvania 300, Sep. 17 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series: New Hampshire 200, Sep. 16 Roush Racing Fast Facts * Mark Martin won the first Cup...

ROUSH RACING
New Hampshire International Speedway, Sep. 15-17

NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series: Sylvania 300, Sep. 17
NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series: New Hampshire 200, Sep. 16

Roush Racing Fast Facts

* Mark Martin won the first Cup pole at New Hampshire in July of 1993.

* Martin has never won at Loudon, but he has finished second on three occasions.

* Martin finished inside the top 10 in 10 of his first 12 and 11 of his first 13 races at Loudon.

* Martin has finished inside the top 10 in his last two races at Loudon, including a fourth in the spring.

* Martin last took the lead in the Cup point standings at Loudon in Sept. of 2002.

* Martin has led 395 laps at New Hampshire.

* Martin is one of just three drivers to have qualified for the Chase in each of its first three seasons.

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* Greg Biffle is currently 12th in the point standings after his sixth place finish at Richmond.

* Biffle and the National Guard team are currently 264 points behind the 11th position.

* In addition to his Cup record at Loudon, Biffle has three top-five finishes in the Craftsman Truck Series.

* This weekend Biffle will be co-hosting the Craftsman Truck Series pre-race show on SPEED with Ray Dunlap.

* This weekend the No. 16 National Guard team will run the red, white and blue National Guard paint scheme.

***

* Matt Kenseth enters the Chase for the NEXTEL Cup atop the standings for the first time in his career. The previous two Chases, Kenseth sat in the fifth (2004) and ninth (2005) position.

* Among the 10 "Chase tracks," New Hampshire International Speedway is Kenseth's best in regards to average start, 16.9, and average finish, 10.9. NHIS also holds Kenseth's best "Chase finish;" second-place finish in 2004.

* Kenseth has an average finish of 10.9 at NHIS; tops among active NEXTEL Cup drivers with 10 or more starts at the track, and the fourth best track for Kenseth's career.

* Kenseth has completed all but four laps in 13 races at NHIS; 3784 of 3788. The fourth best mark of any driver that has competed in those same 13 events.

* Kenseth's eight top-10 finishes at NHIS is best among all drivers since 2000 (tied with Dale Jarrett).

***

* Jamie McMurray will be back in his No. 26 Crown Royal Ford Fusion this weekend at Loudon.

* McMurray will be a featured guest on "Imus in the Morning" this Friday morning, live from New Hampshire International Speedway.

* In seven starts at New Hampshire International Speedway, McMurray averages a 15.9 start and a 21.0 finish.

* McMurray's best finish at the 1.058-mile speedway came in September of 2004, where he led one lap and finished fifth.

* Thus far in the 2006 season, McMurray has scored three top-five finishes and seven top-10 finishes.

***

* Carl Edwards has an average finish of 13.2 in four Nextel Cup races at New Hampshire International Speedway.

* Office Depot Store #2508 of College Point, N.Y., will be on the side of Edwards' Ford Fusion for this weekend's race at New Hampshire International Speedway.

* Currently, Edwards and the No. 99 Office Depot team are in 13th place in the point standings and 292 points out of 11th place.

NEXTEL CUP SERIES
Sylvania 300, Sunday, Sep. 17

Mark Martin
Team: No. 6 AAA Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Pat Tryson
Chassis: RK-221 Finished fifth last week at Richmond and fourth at Loudon in July.
    _ It posted a dominating performance early this year at Phoenix.
     It is the car Martin used to win the All-Star Challenge with in 2005.

Martin on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"Loudon can be a tough track. It's really hard to pass there and if your car isn't handling well it can make for a really bad day. We've struggled there in the past, but we had a really good run there in the spring and we ran pretty good there last year, so we are hoping that we can expand on that and move into the Chase with a solid finish and hopefully putting the right foot forward.

"We are excited about moving into the Chase and I'm excited that we made it. The team really stepped up to the plate last weekend at Richmond and I can't tell you how proud I am of Pat Tryson and these guys on the AAA team. When the pressure was really on, they came through and we were able to go out and do exactly what we had to do. Nobody on this team gives up and I plan to go out and have a lot of fun in these last 10 races, and we are confident that we can surprise some people and put it all together and make a run for this championship."

Crew Chief Pat Tryson on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"First of all we are excited about being in the Chase and we are excited about going to Loudon and getting started on our run at the Championship. We are taking the same car to Loudon that we used last week at Richmond and that we used the first race at Loudon where we finished top five, so our plan is to build on that success and hopefully we can go in and come out of there with a solid finish and advance our spot in the point standings."

Greg Biffle
Team: No. 16 National Guard Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Doug Richert
Chassis: RK-297 Martinsville and New Hampshire '06

Biffle on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"I enjoy racing at New Hampshire but for some reason we had always struggled there until last year. We had a couple of top-five finishes there last season and we're taking the car that we finished third with there in July. I feel confident with this car and if we start with our setup notes from the last race, we'll be in good shape. We're out of the Chase but we'll do everything we can to finish 11th and get a couple of wins before the end of the season."

Crew Chief Doug Richert on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"We're taking a car this weekend that we raced at New Hampshire in July and finished third. New Hampshire used to be one of our weaknesses but we had two top-five finishes there last year. If we can just go back and finish in the top five again, I'll be happy. We plan to use these final races as a test for next season but we will be there to contend for the win every week as well."

Matt Kenseth
Team: No. 17 DEWALT Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Robbie Reiser
Chassis: RK-353 Last ran Loudon in July; finished 14th
     Also ran Phoenix in Apr.; finished 3rd
     RK-150 Tested earlier in '06 at Vegas
     Ran Loudon Sep. '05; finished 3rd

Kenseth on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"We're beginning the Chase this week and for us it's going to stay business as usual. We've stayed focused this year on one race at a time, and that's how it's going to stay this week and for the nine after that. Everyone seems to be putting a lot of pressure on this weekend, and I don't necessarily see it. I mean, yes, you want to start the Chase with a good finish, but if you don't, you still have nine more to make up for it. Kurt (Busch) finished 42nd at Atlanta and still won the Championship in 2004. If you get hot and start reeling off top-five finishes you can make up a lot of ground in a hurry. Still, we'll be looking for a good finish this weekend and hopefully start the Chase on a good note. Hopefully, the car we're bringing will be better than the car we brought in July and struggled with a little bit."

Crew Chief Robbie Reiser on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"We're bringing what we feel to be our best short track car this weekend. It ran good at Martinsville in its only other appearance this season. We had some brake issues there that cost us a solid top-10 finish, but we think we have them resolved. This car finished third at Loudon last September, and we'd be happy with a repeat performance. Flat tracks haven't been too good to us as a whole, and you'd think that would be different considering that's the kind of tracks that Matt and I grew up racing on, but it hasn't been the case. Not that we're bad at them, but it seems like Martinsville, Loudon, and Phoenix give us trouble from time to time. It seems like we rarely have a car capable of winning at Loudon, but it's usually capable of running inside the top 10. With a few right adjustments and a solid day on pit road, it'd be nice to come out of there with a top five."

Jamie McMurray
Team: No. 26 Crown Royal Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Bob Osborne
Chassis: RK-157 Last raced at Loudon in July 2006; McMurray finished 33rd

McMurray on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"I really feel like I have something to prove this weekend in New Hampshire. The New Hampshire race earlier this year, we lost our brakes very early on in the race and didn't finish very well at all. This weekend we are out to show how strong we can really be at New Hampshire. I have had some good runs at the track in the past, so hopefully we can put it together this weekend. Over the last few weeks we haven't been able to produce a finish we are proud of. Needless to say, we are looking forward to a better run this weekend in New Hampshire."

Crew Chief Bob Osborne on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"New Hampshire is a tough track in regards to setup. It's a mile track that you have to setup for like a short track. Brakes are very, very important at New Hampshire, as we found out the last time we visited the track. We started losing our brakes after only 35 laps last time. This time, I think we have a better handle on the brakes and how to make them last the entire race. The last couple of weeks have been tough for this 26 team. Hopefully, we can have a solid run in New Hampshire and move ourselves up a little in the points."

Carl Edwards
Team: No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Wally Brown
Chassis: RK--358 Last raced at New Hampshire International Speedway in July '06; finished 2nd

Edwards on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"Last weekend was tough. My guys deserve better, and I really want to run well this weekend for them. New Hampshire is flat and fast, and we had a strong, second-place run here in July. I've learned a lot about this track since the first time I came to Loudon, and I think we're in a good position to do well. We didn't make the Chase, which was disappointing, but we still have a chance to race for wins and for 11th place during the next 10 races. I want to make the most of that opportunity, and I know the entire No. 99 Office Depot team is going to give their all."

Crew Chief Wally Brown on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"The entire No. 99 Office Depot team is looking forward to this weekend. Our Ford Fusion is fast, and Carl had a great race here in July. Last weekend was tough for all of us, but I'm proud of the team. Everyone is working hard and staying focused. There is a lot left to race for this season, and I know it would be a big boost to our team to get to Victory Lane this weekend at Loudon."

CRAFTSMAN TRUCK SERIES
New Hampshire 200, Saturday, Sep. 16

Mark Martin
Team: No. 6 Scotts Miracle-Gro Ford F-150
Crew Chief: Mike Beam
Chassis: No. 46 New truck making its first official run on track

Martin on racing in the Truck Series at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"This Scotts team is really on a roll. We had a great run in Bristol and we had an awesome Busch car with this team at California a couple of weeks ago. I'm really looking forward to getting back in the Scotts F-150 and hopefully we can pick up where we left off and be as successful as we were at Bristol, where our truck was just terrific. Mike Beam and these guys have done a great job all season and you just can't say enough about the effort that everyone has put into this program."

Crew Chief Mike Beam on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"It's always exciting when you go into a weekend getting to run a truck race with Mark (Martin). The team is really on a roll lately with the win at Bristol and a couple of solid efforts in the Busch series and we are looking to go to New Hampshire, run well again and hopefully we'll be in contention for another win."

David Ragan
Team: No. 50 Roush Racing Ford F-150
Crew Chief: Matt Puccia
Chassis: 34 Last raced at ORP where Ragan started from the pole and finished ninth

Ragan on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"I think New Hampshire is going to be a pretty cool track for us. I ran a Craftsman Truck Series race up here a few years ago so I've got a little bit of experience heading into this weekend. It's a track that you've got to stay on the bottom and have some good horsepower down the long straightaways. It's a nice facility to go to, and it's one of the times as a racecar driver that the travel is pretty cool. It's a part of the country that I'm not too familiar with, so I look forward to heading up there. I'm glad that we've got a few days to be there, it gives us time to go out and see the area."

Crew Chief Matt Puccia on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"New Hampshire is a challenging track. It has characteristics of a short track and a speedway all in one. We're bringing one of David's favorite trucks, he has had some success in it and we're looking to continue that."

Erik Darnell
Team: No. 99 Woolrich Ford F-150
Crew Chief: John Quinn
Chassis: 35, last raced at ORP where Darnell started 13th and finished 10th

Darnell on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"I really don't know too much about New Hampshire, but from what I've been told there are some similarities to Milwaukee. I like racing there, so I'm hoping that we can take some of my experience there and use it to our advantage this weekend. We were really strong in the truck race there earlier in the year, but had a little misfortune when we had a problem with tires chunking. We'll be in the same truck that we had up there, we'll just look for a better result. Woolrich is back on board with us this week, so we'd really like to get them a good finish."

Crew Chief John Quinn on racing at New Hampshire International Speedway:
"We're looking to have a really strong run in New Hampshire. I don't want to put position expectations on it, but Erik runs really well at Milwaukee, which is a very similar track. The Roush teams have had some success here as well, so we're expecting to come out of here with a solid finish. We've had some decent success on the flat tracks, and we'll look to continue that trend here."

-credit: rr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup , NASCAR Truck
Drivers Dale Jarrett , Matt Kenseth , Greg Biffle , Jamie McMurray , Carl Edwards , David Ragan , Erik Darnell , Doug Richert , Mark Martin