Sears Point: Mark Martin preview

MARTIN READY TO TAKE TO THE 'ROAD' COURSE After three straight top-10 efforts, Martin and the Viagra Racing Team will head to the hills of Napa Valley for the circuit's first road course race of the season, where Martin will be looking to score...

MARTIN READY TO TAKE TO THE 'ROAD' COURSE

After three straight top-10 efforts, Martin and the Viagra Racing Team will head to the hills of Napa Valley for the circuit's first road course race of the season, where Martin will be looking to score his third top-five finish in the last four races.

Chassis Number: (RK-204) - The team will run RK-204 at Sonoma this weekend. RK-204 is the same car that Martin used to finish eighth with last year at Sonoma and second in the fall at Watkins Glen.

Worthy Note: Martin has finished inside the top 10 in over 80 percent of his races at Infineon Raceway.

IN THE POINTS

Martin's third straight top 10-finish last weekend solidified his fifth-place position in the NEXTEL Cup Chase. Martin is currently only 19 points out of third place and 10 out of fourth. After 14 races he trails first place by 269.

MARTIN AT INFINEON

Martin won at Infineon in 1997 from the pole, one of only five times that feat has been accomplished. His 13 top-10 finishes at Infineon Raceway are the most of any active driver. Martin has finished in the top 10 in 10 of the last 11 races at Sonoma, where he has been top 10 in 81 percent of his races.

ROAD COURSE MASTER MARTIN

Martin is one of the most accomplished road course racers on the Nextel Cup circuit. Martin's four wins at road courses are the ninth most all time and his four poles are the eighth most. Martin's 30 top-10 finishes on road courses are the most of any driver. Martin finished eighth and second in the circuits two road course races last season.

MARKMARTINSALUTE.COM

Mark Martin is making his final run at the Nextel Cup title in 2005, and has dubbed 2005 as his "Salute to You" tour, a year in which he hopes to take the time to thank each and everyone that he feels played a role in his success, including team members, fans, NASCAR and the media.

QUOTING MARK AND PAT --ON SONOMA

"I grew up learning how to drive on those old winding dirt roads of Arkansas and to me that's a lot like what road course racing is like, so I've always like the road courses. The good thing about it is that the cars are a lot faster now, but the competition is pretty steep as well. Sonoma ia a fun road course to race at and we always look forward to going out west and seeing the fans out there. We've had a lot of success out there and hopefully we can go out there and take the Viagra Ford to victory lane.

"Pat (Tryson) and this Viagra Team have really been on their game the last couple of months. We won the All-Star Race and had a good run going in the 600 before we got wrecked. Then we rebounded from that with top-five efforts at Dover, Pocono and Michigan. We are up to fifth in the points and hopefully we can gain some more ground this weekend at Sonoma."

PAT TRYSON

"We are excited about going road racing. We tested Road Atlanta and were pleased with what we saw there. We are taking the same car that Mark finished eighth with at Sonoma and second with at Watkins Glen last season, so it will just be a matter of getting the car right for Mark, as we all know he is one of the best road course racers on the circuit. If we can give him the right car, there is no doubt he can take us to victory lane on Sunday."

Mark Martin Fast Facts -- Sonoma

* Martin won at Infineon from the pole in 1997, a feat that has only been accomplished four other times.

* Martin leads all drivers with 13 top-10 finishes at Sonoma.

* Martin has finished in the top 10 in 10 of the last 11 at Sonoma.

* Martin has competed in 35 career road-course races scoring four victories and 31 top-10 finishes.

* Martin has finished either first or second in 30 percent of every Nextel Cup race at Sonoma.

* Martin has finished inside the top 10 in 81 percent of the NC races at Sonoma and inside the top five in 44 percent of the races.

* Martin's four wins at road courses tie for the ninth most in NASCAR history and his four poles tie for the eighth most.

* Martin has competed in all 16 races at Sonoma, scoring four second-place finishes, in addition to one win.

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Mark Martin