Mexico City: Roush Fenway Racing preview

Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez (Rodriguez Bros. Autodrome) Mexico City, Mexico NASCAR Nationwide Series: Corona Mexico 200 Sunday, April 20 David Ragan * This will be David Ragan's second career Nationwide Series race at Autodromo ...

Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez
(Rodriguez Bros. Autodrome)
Mexico City, Mexico

NASCAR Nationwide Series: Corona Mexico 200
Sunday, April 20

David Ragan

* This will be David Ragan's second career Nationwide Series race at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.

* Ragan is currently fourth in the Nationwide Series point standings.

* Ragan has five top-10 finishes in the Nationwide Series in 2008.

* Ragan won Raybestos Rookie-of-the-Year in 2007 in the Nationwide Series.

Colin Braun

* This is Braun's first Nationwide Series race at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.

* He has two Rolex Grand AM Daytona Prototype starts on the track; finishing second in both 2006 and 2007.

* Braun has one previous Nationwide Series start this season.

* He qualified ninth and finished 15th at Nashville Superspeedway in March.

* The 19-year-old Craftsman Truck Series regular prepared for this weekend with his Roush Fenway Racing teammates by testing at Virginia International Raceway last month.

* Braun has five years of road racing experience including three years in the Rolex Grand AM series.

Erik Darnell

* This will be Darnell's first career Nationwide Series start.

* He is also slated for Nationwide Series starts at Milwaukee, Daytona and ORP later in the year.

* Darnell tested the No. 17 Nationwide Series car earlier this year at Daytona, and tested the No. 16 Nationwide Series car at Las Vegas.

* In 2007, he practiced the No. 6 for David Ragan at ORP when Ragan was with his Sprint Cup team at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

* Darnell did the same for Greg Biffle and the No. 16 team in 2006.

* Darnell has two career starts on road courses; one at Infineon Raceway and one at Brainerd International Raceway.

* Darnell tested at Virginia International Raceway last month in preparation for this weekend.

Carl Edwards

* Carl will make his eighth NASCAR Nationwide Series start at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.

* In three Nationwide Series starts at Mexico City, Edwards has two top-five and three top-ten finishes.

* Carl's best finish at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez came in 2005 when he finished 3rd behind 2005 series champion Martin Truex Jr. and 2006 series champ Kevin Harvick.

* Looking for back-to-back series championships? Carl is only twenty-four points behind current series leader Clint Bowyer. Edwards was the 2007 Nationwide Series Champion.

David Ragan
Team: No. 6 Discount Tire Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Mike Kelley
Chassis: RK-424 Last ran at Watkins Glen, Aug. '07, finished 21st

Ragan on racing in the Nationwide Series at Mexico City:
"Our Discount Tire team is coming off a nice run at Phoenix. We are going into Mexico City with a lot of confidence right now. Road courses are always tough because we traditionally don't run them a lot, but last year's experience at this track was very encouraging to me and my ability to run well. I am sure our team has prepared a fast and competitive racecar for this weekend. We need a solid point day to stay right where we want to be in the championship standings."

Crew Chief Mike Kelley on racing at Mexico City:
"I am really looking forward to seeing what David can do the second time around at this road course. We had a solid finish there last year but I feel like we are better prepared for it now. The key to this weekend is staying on the course and being patient while running in traffic. The Discount Tire Ford Fusion will be fast, we just have to make sure we take care of our equipment. Hopefully when everything is said and done we can get a solid finish and move up in the point standings."

Colin Braun
Team: No. 16 3M Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Eddie Pardue
Chassis: RK-488 (Braun tested at VIR last month)

Colin Braun on racing at Mexico City:
"I'm really excited to get to Mexico City this weekend. It'll be fun to be at a track where I have more experience than a lot of the other Nationwide Series drivers. I know the 3M Ford Fusion will be fast. We tested this car at VIR a few weeks ago and it felt great. I'm ready to get down there -- it's going to be a lot of fun."

Crew Chief Eddie Pardue on racing at Mexico City:
"We are thrilled that Colin is driving for us this weekend. He's proven he can win road course races. This is a track he feels really comfortable on and we're excited to get going. We're taking a good car and I expect Colin to run up front all weekend."

Erik Darnell
Team: No. 17 Citi Financial Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Drew Blickensderfer
Chassis: RK-423 (last driven by Michel Jourdain in Montreal 2007, finished 16th)

Darnell on racing at Mexico City:
"I'm really excited for my first Nationwide Series race. I have to thank Jack Roush and everyone at CitiFinancial for giving me this opportunity. Every driver's goal is to move up through the ranks and hopefully land a Sprint Cup Series ride. This is going to be a big weekend for me and I'm just ready to get down there."

Crew Chief Drew Blickensderfer on racing at Mexico City:
"Erik is a talented young driver. He put up pretty competitive lap times when we went to VIR a few weeks ago. I'm sure he'll be anxious at first. We just want him to get some laps under his belt and get comfortable in the car."

Carl Edwards
Team: No. 60 Scotts Water Smart Ford Fusion
Crew Chief: Pierre Kuettel
Chassis: RK-489 New Car

Edwards on racing at Mexico City:
"It's going to be great to head back to Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City this weekend. It's the first road course of the year and it will be fun to race with all the drivers from Mexico and all the regular road course drivers. It is always a challenging course and it takes a lot of patience to get around the 2.518- mile track. I would love to put my Scotts Water Smart Ford Fusion in Victory Lane and win an international race. It would be awesome to do a back flip in front of all the great fans in Mexico."

Crew Chief Pierre Kuettel (P.K.) on racing at Mexico City:
"We always look forward to coming to this tough road course because we have yet to conquer it. I know Carl wants to win an International event and it would mean the world to our Scotts Water Smart team to get to Victory Lane. We have to take care of our equipment and take what the track gives us. Patience is the key to success at this road course."

-credit: rfr

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About this article
Drivers Kevin Harvick , Greg Biffle , Colin Braun , Martin Truex Jr. , Carl Edwards , Clint Bowyer , Jack Roush , David Ragan , Erik Darnell , Mike Kelley , Michel Jourdain
Teams Roush Fenway Racing