NASCAR Sprint Cup Series CampingWorld.com 500
Phoenix International Raceway Distance: 312 miles (312 laps)
Sunday, March 15 3:30 p.m. (ET) TV: FOX, 3 p.m. (ET)
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
NASCAR XFINITY Series Axalta Faster Tougher. Brighter. 200
Phoenix International Raceway Distance: 200 miles (200 laps)
Saturday, March 14 Time: 4 p.m. (ET) TV: FOX, 3:30 p.m. (ET)
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Kroger 250
Martinsville Speedway Distance: 131.5 miles (250 laps)
Saturday, March 28 2:30 p.m. (ET) TV: FOX Sports 1, 2:30 p.m. (ET)
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES
Car 4 Kevin Harvick Jimmy John’s/Budweiser Chevrolet
Kevin Harvick is riding a streak of six straight Top 2 finishes dating back to Texas last year – there will likely be one following Sunday’s CampingWorld.com 500 at Phoenix International Raceway (3:30 p.m. ET on FOX). The No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing driver has won the last three events at PIR and holds the all-time track record with six victories. How historic is Harvick’s run of top twos? The last driver to finish second or better in six consecutive races was Jeff Gordon. He accomplished the feat in 1996.
Car 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Nationwide Chevrolet
Kevin Harvick has gotten off to a blazing hot start, but despite not winning a race yet, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is not far behind. The
12-time NMPA Sprint NASCAR Most Popular Driver, currently second in the standings, trails Harvick by just 9 points after stringing
together three top-four finishes to begin the season. Junior will go for his first points-paying win with new crew chief Greg Ives in
Sunday’s CampingWorld.com 500 at Phoenix International Raceway. He finished runner-up in last season’s first event at the one-mile
track and claims two wins there.
Car 78 Martin Truex Jr. Furniture Row Chevrolet
That’s how deep into the season Martin Truex Jr. delved last year before claiming his 3rd Top 10 finish. The New Jersey native enters
Sunday’s CampingWorld.com 500 at Phoenix International Raceway coming off a runner-up showing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway – his best finish with Furniture Row Racing since signing with the organization in 2013. Truex has led his No. 78 FRR solo-car team to the
fourth spot in the driver points standings – the highest ranking in its 10-year history. He will attempt to continue his run in the Sun Devil State, where he claims 6 Top 10s in 18 starts.
Car 24 Jeff Gordon 3M Chevrolet
After winning the Coors Light Pole Award for the Daytona 500, Jeff Gordon has been unable to catch a break. The No. 24 Chevrolet
driver wrecked in the first two races and after winning the pole again at Las Vegas, had to race in a backup car and start from the
tail end of the field following a collision with Danica Patrick during practice. Sitting 30th in points, Gordon can turn his season
around quickly with a win and the subsequent Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup berth that would come with it.
Phoenix International Raceway might be the spot where Gordon finds Victory Lane in Sunday’s CampingWorld.com 500. The 43-year-old
driver has posted two wins, 12 top fives and three Coors Light Pole Awards at the one-mile track and finished runner-up in last season’s fall race there.
Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup this season
Points leader & Current NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Car 4 Kevin Harvick Jimmy John’s/Budweiser Chevrolet. Daytona 500 winner Car 22 Joey Logano Pennzoil Platinum Ford. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Car 48 Jimmie Johnson Kobalt Tools Chevrolet. With the new format, each race weekend can change the course of a team’s season by propelling even the most-struggling one into the Chase. Keep in mind even the winners will have to start the remaining regular season races and maintain a points position inside the top 30 to officially clinch their spots. For every victory a driver accumulates, he/she accrues three bonus points that carry into the Challenger Round of NASCAR’s playoffs.
Three NASCAR Sprint Cup Series mainstays are currently approaching or will soon reach milestones. Kasey Kahne will make his 400th
consecutive career NSCS start this weekend at Phoenix. He ranks 21st on the consecutive starts list. In his 399 previous starts, he
has posted 17 wins (including a 2011 victory at Phoenix), 83 top fives, 147 top 10s, 26 poles and an average finish of 17.3.
Furthermore, Kahne’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jimmie Johnson will make his 475th NSCS start (41st all time) and Richard
Childress Racing driver Ryan Newman will attempt to post the 100th top-five finish of his career.
NASCAR Lifts Kurt Busch Suspension, Outlines On-Going Requirements
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (March 11, 2015) — NASCAR announced today that, effectively immediately, the indefinite suspension of Kurt Busch has been lifted. He is eligible to return to NASCAR racing under indefinite probation subject to additional mandatory requirements
that include but are not limited to participation in a treatment program and full compliance with any judicial requirements placed
On Feb. 20, Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 car, was found to be in violation of:
· Section 12.1.a: Actions detrimental to stock car racing
· Section 12.8: Behavioral Penalty
The decision to lift the suspension was made by NASCAR after Kurt Busch:
· Complied with all requirements in its reinstatement program;
· Completed the mandatory behavioral assessment sessions; and
· The behavioral health care expert who conducted the sessions recommended to
NASCAR that Kurt Busch be allowed to return to competition.
Kurt Busch now will undergo additional steps to address the behavior for which he was penalized.
The requirement that a driver must compete in all Championship Events of the current season to be eligible for The Chase for the
NASCAR Sprint Cup has been waived for the period of Kurt Busch’s suspension. Assuming he returns to NASCAR Sprint Cup competition,
Kurt Busch would have zero Championship points to date after missing the Daytona 500 and the two most recent NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
“As we stated last week, the elimination of the possibility of criminal charges removed a significant impediment to Kurt Busch’s
return to full status as a NASCAR member,” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development
Officer. “We therefore have decided to move him to indefinite probation and waive the Chase requirement. He has fully complied with
our reinstatement program during his suspension and the health care expert who conducted his evaluation recommended his immediate
“We have made it very clear to Kurt Busch our expectations for him moving forward, which includes participation in a treatment
program and full compliance with all judicial requirements as a result of his off-track behavior.”
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES
Car 3 Ty Dillon Red Kap/Prudential Overall Supply Chevrolet
Richard Childress Racing’s Ty Dillon has powered to the NASCAR XFINITY Series point standings lead after posting three top-10
finishes in the first three races of the 2015 season. Dillon has been adamant since the season opener that 2015 is a championship or
bust season for himself and the No. 3 RCR Chevrolet team. Now he sits at the standings point, six markers ahead of Roush Fenway
Racing driver Chris Buescher in second and 15 points ahead of third-place Ryan Reed.
His NASCAR Loop Data supports his impressive performance; his season-to-date average running position is 7.698 (second-best) and his
driver rating is 103.8 (second-best). Dillon heads to Phoenix this weekend having made two starts at the one-mile raceway posting one
top five and two top 10s. His average finish at Phoenix is 7.0. Last fall Dillon started seventh and finished fourth at PIR.
Young Top Five In Points Turns The Spotlight To The Youth
The youth movement in NASCAR continues, this week’s average age of the top five in the NASCAR XFINITY Series point standings (21.2)
supports just that. The next generation of great drivers are being groomed now in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, the series where names
The elder statesman of the youth contingent is points leader Ty Dillon who just turned 23 years old on Feb. 27. The second, third and
fourth-place positions in the standings belong to Roush Fenway Racing’s Chris Buescher (22 years old), Ryan Reed (21 years old), and
Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate Darrell Wallace Jr. (21 years old) respectively. The youngest of the group is fifth in points;
the 2014 series champion Chase Elliott at the age of 19.
Four of the top five in points have made starts at Phoenix and two have average finishes inside the top 10: Ty Dillon (7.0), Chase
Elliott (7.0), Chris Buescher (13.5) and Ryan Reed (18.7). This will be Darrell Wallace Jr.’s series debut at Phoenix this weekend.
Wallace is familiar with Phoenix International Raceway; he made two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at the one-mile track,
posting one top 10 and an average finish of 13.0.
Strong Sprint Cup Cavalcade Rides Into Phoenix
A stout double duty lineup awaits fans in Phoenix. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers Kevin Harvick, Matt Kenseth, Joey Logano and
Austin Dillon will compete at Phoenix’s NASCAR XFINITY Series Axalta Faster. Tougher. Brighter. 200 on March 14 (4 p.m. ET on FOX).
Sunoco Rookie Update: Daniel Suarez Continues To Improve
Darrell Wallace Jr. continues to lead the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings following the third race of the season by five points
over second-place Ross Chastain and eight points ahead of third-place Daniel Suarez.
Rookie Spotlight: Daniel Suarez
The 23-year-old, Monterey, Mexico native, Daniel Suarez, continues to improve with each start in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. Ever
since the season opener at Daytona where he was caught in a late race accident relegating him to a 39th-place finish, Suarez has
bounced back, finishing 14th at Atlanta and then posting his first series career top 10 last weekend at Las Vegas. It was also the
first top 10 by a Mexico-born driver since 2007 (Jorge Goeters and Adrian Fernandez at Autodromo Hemranos Rodriguez in Mexico City).
“I definitely feel like we’re improving,” said Suarez. “We are learning about everything. We are getting more confident each race and
that’s good. I really think that we are going to be even stronger in Phoenix.”
Suarez’s success on the track is translating to the point standings as well. He jumped seven spots in the overall series driver
standings from 20th to 13th this past weekend.
Suarez returns to Phoenix International Raceway, where he won the NASCAR Mexico Toyota Series race in 2014.
NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES
Dillon Powers GMS Racing To Team-Best Finish
One week after winning GMS Racing its first Keystone Light Pole Award, Ty Dillon earned the organization a team-best second-place
finish at Atlanta Motor Speedway. After struggling to handle his No. 33 Chevrolet Silverado in practice and qualifying, Dillon and
the GMS team made the proper adjustments for the race, turning a 14th starting position into a runner-up finish. GMS’ previous high
showing was a third-place finish registered by Spencer Gallagher at Pocono last year.
Tyler Reddick followed up his first career victory at Daytona by finishing ahead of his owner – 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
champion Brad Keselowski – with a fifth-place showing at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Saturday. Keselowski finished 15th.
Even better, Reddick maintained the top spot in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series standings, leading the last two seasons’
champion Matt Crafton by two points.
Sunoco Rookie Picture Packed After Atlanta
A robust rookie class has taken aim at NASCAR Camping World Truck Series regulars like Matt Crafton, Johnny Sauter, Norm Benning,
Timothy Peters and Jennifer Jo Cobb this season. Three rookies occupy the top 10 of the driver points standings: Erik Jones (third),
Ray Black Jr. (eighth) and Korbin Forrister (10th). Sitting on the cusp of the top 10 are Spencer Gallagher (13th) and Cameron Hayley
(15th). Only seven points separate Jones from standings leader Tyler Reddick. A runner-up finish in the season opener and a seventh-
place showing at Atlanta have catapulted Jones to the early lead in the Sunoco Rookie of the Year race.
Graphics & Photos Courtesy of NASCAR