Nemechek's Superspeedway Wait is Over TALLADEGA, Ala. (April 25, 2006) -- After being short changed of strutting his superspeedway stuff at Daytona in February, Joe Nemechek has been looking forward to this weekend at Talladega with hopes of ...
Nemechek's Superspeedway Wait is Over
TALLADEGA, Ala. (April 25, 2006) -- After being short changed of strutting his superspeedway stuff at Daytona in February, Joe Nemechek has been looking forward to this weekend at Talladega with hopes of rekindling his team's superspeedway authority.
"We never really had a chance in Daytona," offered Nemechek. "We've been waiting for more than two months to get back to a restrictor-plate track to prove that the MB2-built cars and the Hendrick engines are still strong on the big tracks."
Nemechek's Daytona troubles actually started in the Gatorade 150-mile qualifying race, a prelude to the Daytona 500. Nemechek's No. 01 U.S. Army Chevrolet was running fourth and moving closer to the lead when his engine expired on Lap 26 of 60.
A few days later in the Daytona 500, Nemechek experienced trouble before the race was one-lap old. A flying piece of tire tread from Jeff Green's car tore through the front-end of the Army Chevrolet, causing extensive aerodynamic damage to the 01 car.
Nemechek's Daytona 500 problems got worse when he was collected in the multicar wreck on Lap 79 of 200.
"We left Daytona disappointed because we were strong in every phase of our preparations for the 500," explained Nemechek. "We're confident that we can put together a strong showing this week in both qualifying and in the race."
Nemechek, who is one of only three active drivers to capture three poles at Talladega Superspeedway, has had a pole and two top-10 finishes in his last three races at the 2.66-mile oval.
"We're bringing our Daytona car to Talladega and it's all fixed up and ready to challenge," noted Nemechek. "We just need to avoid the wrecks, and you know there are going to be a few. That's Talladega."
Speaking of what it's like to drive on Talladega's monster oval, Nemechek says it's not only stressful, but very cerebral.
"When you have 43 cars running three wide and only a few inches apart, you need to be intelligent and not emotional,"said Nemechek. "Like a good soldier, you have to be thinking at all times about when and where you're going to make your next move.Tempers and emotions need tobe left in the drivers' motor coaches. One wrong or stupid move can cause a lot of damage, we saw that last year."
Nemechek was referring to the 25-car pile up that he was involved in during last year's spring race at Talladega.
"Anytime you go to Talladega,you know the "Big One"can happen," said Nemechek. "You just hope that you're lucky enough to avoid it."