BIRES HOPES TO "ROPE IN" IN TEXAS FORT WORTH, Tex. -- If Kelly Bires had to pick three race tracks to finish the NASCAR Nationwide Series season on, he couldn't ask for any better selection than the Texas Motor Speedway, Phoenix ...
BIRES HOPES TO "ROPE IN" IN TEXAS
FORT WORTH, Tex. -- If Kelly Bires had to pick three race tracks to finish the NASCAR Nationwide Series season on, he couldn't ask for any better selection than the Texas Motor Speedway, Phoenix International Raceway and the Homestead Miami Speedway.
This Saturday's O'Reilly Challenge at Texas fits right into JTG Daugherty Racing's strength. Bires is most comfortable on intermediate tracks, prompting a lot of optimism for Saturday's O'Reilly Challenge.
"We usually find our groove on the intermediate tracks," Bires said. "Our best finishes come on the bigger, faster tracks with a lot of banking. I really like the tracks at the end of the schedule, but Texas plays to our strength the best."
Bires will drive the No. 47 STP/O'Reilly Auto Parts Ford. It's the same car that already has five Top-10 finishes this season.
"All of our Top-10 runs have come on the intermediate tracks," said crew chief Scott Zipadelli. "We have a really good package for those tracks. We've been able to bring our basic setup to every one of them and make minor adjustments once we get there. The basics never change, no matter where we go. You're always looking for a balance in the center of the corners and speed off the exits. Hopefully we can pick up where we've left off."
Bires' best finishes -- all Top 10s -- this year have come at Nashville (a 1.333-mile speedway), Michigan (2-miles), Kansas (1.5 miles) and Charlotte (1.5 miles). Texas is a 1.5-mile track.
"First of all, I'm really comfortable on these kinds of tracks," Bires said. "The STP/O'Reilly Ford is really fast, so it makes my job a lot easier. You have to be able to keep the gas pedal on the floor through the middle of the corner so you've got a running start for the straightaways. You make all your speed coming off the second and fourth turns."
Bires is 13th in the Nationwide Series standings. The team hopes to improve their position in the final three races with Top-10 runs.
"We can accomplish a lot in the final three races," Bires said. "We can move up in the standings and we can build momentum for 2009. If we had to pick three tracks to make it happen, we couldn't ask for more. O'Reilly Auto Parts is the title sponsor for the race as well, so it would be nice to double their pleasure. We can get a lot of good things done this weekend."
Six Time World Roping Champion, Cody Ohl, will be a guest of Bires and the #47 team. Ohl will serve as an honorary crew member along with special guests from STP and O'Reilly's Auto Parts. This will be Ohl's first NASCAR event.