ROAD COURSE MASTER MARTIN Martin, Viagra Racing Team ready to make right turn at Sonoma CONCORD, N.C. (June 21, 2005) - Mark Martin and the Viagra Racing Team will take their "Salute to You Tour" to Sonoma this weekend as the NASCAR circuit...
ROAD COURSE MASTER MARTIN
Martin, Viagra Racing Team ready to make right turn at Sonoma
CONCORD, N.C. (June 21, 2005) - Mark Martin and the Viagra Racing Team will take their "Salute to You Tour" to Sonoma this weekend as the NASCAR circuit takes a right turn for the first time of the season with road course racing at Infineon Raceway. Riding on the momentum of three straight top-10 runs, Martin and the team are hoping to keep their streak alive with a strong run at a track where Martin's stats have been impressive to say the least.
"I love road racing," said Martin. "I grew up learning how to drive on the winding, curvy dirt roads of Arkansas and road racing is a lot like that. The only difference is the roads are paved, the cars are a lot faster and the competition is a whole lot steeper.
"Still, it kind of takes you back to your roots in racing and it's a good test of a driver," added Martin. "The fans out west are great as well and it's fun to take the "Salute To You" tour back out there, where we've had a lot of success racing throughout the years. Hopefully we can go out on a strong note and put the car into victory lane."
Martin's 13 top-10 finishes at Infineon are the most of any driver. In addition, Martin has seven-top five finishes and he won there -- from the pole -- in 1997. Martin has finished in the top 10 in 10 of his last 11 races at Sonoma and he has finished in the top 10 in 81 percent of his 16 races there. Martin's lone pole at Sonoma came in the 1997 victory, but he has started inside the top 10 in 11 of the 16 races and inside the top five on eight occasions, including a fourth-place start last season.
Martin has always enjoyed racing on the road courses and his statistics show it. In addition to the win at Sonoma, he has three wins at Watkins Glen - all from the pole - giving Martin four wins (all from the pole) on road courses. Martin's 30 top-10 finishes on road courses are the most of any active driver.
Martin's four wins at road courses tie for the ninth most in NASCAR history and his four poles tie for the eighth most.
"I just enjoy the road courses," said Martin. "We've had a lot of success on those type of tracks. They are fun to race on and a lot is in the hands of the driver, so it's always a challenge. We've had some really good runs the last few weeks and Pat (Tryson) and the team have just done an outstanding job. Hopefully we can keep that going."
Roush Racing is a subsidiary of Livonia, Mich., based Roush Industries that operates ten motorsports teams; five in NASCAR Nextel Cup with drivers Mark Martin, Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards; three in the Busch Series with Martin, Kenseth and Edwards, and two in the Craftsman Truck Series with drivers Ricky Craven and Todd Kluever.