Talladega: John Andretti preview

Ergon Racing Talladega Motor Speedway Fast Facts * The Mountain Dew 250 at Talladega Super Speedway will mark John Andretti's first Craftsman Truck Series start at the track * Andretti has 21 Sprint Cup Series starts and one Nationwide ...

Ergon Racing Talladega Motor Speedway Fast Facts

* The Mountain Dew 250 at Talladega Super Speedway will mark John Andretti's first Craftsman Truck Series start at the track

* Andretti has 21 Sprint Cup Series starts and one Nationwide Series start at Talladega

* Andretti has one pole (1997, Sprint Cup Series), two top-five and four top-10 finishes in competition at Talladega

* Andretti has one win in Super Speedway competition (1997, Daytona, Sprint Cup Series)

* Ergon Racing Truck Chief J.R. Norris is from Hueytown, Alabama

* As a driver, Norris was track champion at Birmingham International Raceway in the Super Late Model division and was Rookie of the Year in the Southern All-Star Series

* Ergon, Inc. supplied the asphalt used to repave Talladega Super Speedway in 2006

John Andretti Comments on Talladega Super Speedway

"I've never raced a truck at Talladega, but I think that it'll be pretty similar to racing cars. I think that trucks are probably more similar to a COT than the old cars because the amount of punch in the air is pretty big, especially with the big nose, the high roofs and the big rear spoilers. I don't know, I think it's one of those things where you can probably suck up to people and get a good draft. But when you're passing people, it looks like it gets pretty bunched up and that you need to have some good friends- or at least people that believe you can take them to the ‘promised land.'

"It's going to be a crazy race I'm sure. I don't know that there's a sure fire way to stay out of trouble. Some people say it's best to ride in the back. Others tell you that you're better off racing in the front. When you're in the back, you've got to avoid trouble when it happens, so I think it just depends on where you and your truck can work the best. Obviously, my whole intention is to be at the front and race up there all day. You like to think that there is less trouble that happens up there, and if trouble does happen, that you know everybody is going to be driving into it. The best feeling you ever have, or the best thing your spotter can say to you on the radio is, other than you've won a race, is the caution is behind you. Because when people start spinning and they go sideways, they get pretty big and they block a lot of racetrack and it's pretty hard to slow something down where all you've been in is wide open all day.

"Since the track has been repaved, it's so smooth. I mean it's like going to Indianapolis or something where there're just no bumps. You can race anywhere on the race track. At first I wasn't too keen on them repaving it, because I thought that the bumps made it more difficult for the teams to set up, and still do, but from a racing standpoint, having the track as smooth as it is, you can race anywhere you want on it. You're not trying to drive through big holes like you do at Daytona. At Talladega it doesn't matter where you are on the track, it all feels the same. It's got a lot of grip and they've produced some great racing there. Probably the racing has even gotten better because you can run close and all of the cracks that were in Turns 3 and 4 are all gone. I think that it's just has made the racing that much tighter and it has probably prevented a lot of accidents too because you're not bouncing all over the place, you know, it's nice and smooth, tons of grip."

-credit: er

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers John Andretti , J.R. Norris