Looking To 'Double Up' at Darlington

In addition to the Advance below, please see the attached Team Report which contains a crew roster, statistics and notes for Kyle Busch and the No. 18 Doublemint Toyota Camry fielded by Joe Gibbs Racing.


For Immediate Release

Contact Bill Janitz

True Speed Communication

(704) 875-3388, ext. 803 or Bill.Janitz@TrueSpeedCommunication.com


Online Media Kit Available at: www.TrueSpeedMedia.com





HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. (May 7, 2013) – Kyle Busch has proven he knows a thing or two about doubling up on a race weekend. 


So it might be appropriate that the driver of the No. 18 Doublemint® Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) will have the iconic Doublemint gum brand adorn his racecar as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to historic Darlington (S.C.) Raceway for Saturday night’s Bojangles Southern 500.


Busch has already recorded two Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series “doubles” thus far in 2013. Those Sprint Cup and Nationwide wins on the same weekends at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., in March, and Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth in April upped his total to eight career Sprint Cup-Nationwide doubles.


Las Vegas native Busch conquered Darlington – the “Track Too Tough To Tame” – in May 2008, scoring his first victory at the 1.33-mile, egg-shaped oval and earning the distinction of being the youngest Sprint Cup winner in the storied history of Darlington, at 23 years of age. While not on the same weekend, Busch also has one Nationwide Series win at Darlington, scoring that one in May 2011.


This weekend’s event will mark the first of four races in 2012 that Doublemint will serve as primary sponsor for Busch, as the iconic chewing gum brand’s mint paint scheme will also adorn Busch’s No. 18 Toyota at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta in June, Atlanta Motor Speedway in August, and the first race of the Chase for the Sprint Cup at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., in September.


Busch would like nothing more than to kick off the Doublemint slate of races with a win as the brand nears its 100th anniversary next year. So as he wheels his No. 18 Doublemint® Toyota Camry around the Darlington oval this weekend, Busch will focus on “doubling up” for the ninth time in his career while at the same time doubling his win total at the always-challenging racetrack that’s also known as “The Lady in Black.”



KYLE BUSCH, Driver of the No. 18 Doublemint® Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing:


What are your thoughts heading back to Darlington this weekend?


Going back to Darlington, it’s a place that’s really tough, really challenging. I won there the first year it was repaved, and it’s been really fast. Last couple of years there, we had a really good car. We ended up with a solid finish with our Doublemint Camry there last year and, after the three week stretch we’ve had, I hope we can bring home a solid finish this weekend. But, I’m looking forward to going back there and seeing what Darlington has got in store for us again. I’m hearing that the track color has changed a little bit more with another year for the surface to mature, so maybe the grip level is not going to be old Darlington, but something similar.


What makes Darlington a track that is too tough to tame?


“It’s a very narrow and challenging racetrack, especially for the speeds that we carry around there, now. We’re looking forward to the challenge with our Doublemint Camry this weekend. You’ve really got to be able to get as close as you can to the wall in order to carry your momentum through the corners because you’ve got to make the straightaways as long as you can. The track is very narrow on entries and exits, so you’re always trying to round the place as much as you can. It’s very one-groovish. You can’t really run side-by-side there. Any time you get alongside somebody, you basically have to let them go. It’s a very big give-and-take-type track. It’s a lot harder to pass now, with the fresh asphalt, than it used to be. It’s really aero-sensitive now, to where it used to be more about mechanical grip and getting your car to handle well and handle over the bumps well and keep the tires on it. Now you’re restricted off the car in front of you and are trying to find some air, basically.”


What do drivers mean when they say you have to “race the track” at Darlington?


“You can’t really pass there. It’s so difficult. So you run your laps until you get to a pit stop and try to get your guys to have a good stop for you so you can jump a couple of guys. Pit stops become really important there, and track position and trying to stay up front.”


You have eight career Sprint Cup-Nationwide weekend sweeps, two of which have come this year. How much do you feel like the experience from the Nationwide Series race helps you the next day for the Sprint Cup race?


“The Nationwide Series certainly helps me for the Sprint Cup race the next day. I feel like it helps me, anyway, just being able to get that extra seat time, being able to get that feel of what the racetrack transitions like and what the car does throughout the run and everything, and where you have to move around to. I did a lot of things at Fontana and Texas the next day that I did in the Nationwide race. But people can say, ‘Oh, well, it’s just as easy to watch the race on TV and watch what the winner does.’ But I don’t really want to sit there for three hours and watch it. I’d rather be out there feeling everything and participating in it, and of course it’s always cool when you can win both races. But we’re trying to put everything together, and this year I feel like it’s a little bit better bonus for me to race Joe Gibbs Racing cars on Saturday as it is on Sunday.”

Being a former winner, what does it take to win at Darlington?


“I won the first year there with the new car and I think it was just because everyone was new to the car. I’m hoping that gives us an advantage with this new Gen-6 2013 Toyota Camry since we’ve been fast pretty much everywhere we’ve gone so far. In 2009, a lot of people got a lot smarter. And for us, we fell a little bit behind. You just have to bide your time, and I wasn’t very good at that in 2009, but much better the last three years or so. You’ve got to make sure you keep working on your car and be very patient and be there toward the end.”










Laps Led




×Bojangles Southern 500



Running, 368/368





×Showtime Southern 500



Running, 370/370





Showtime Southern 500



Running, 367/367





Southern 500



Running, 303/367





Dodge Challenger 500



Running, 367/367





Dodge Avenger 500



Running, 338/367





Dodge Charger 500



Running, 367/367





×Dodge Charger 500



Running, 369/370



× Race length extended due to green-white-checkered finish.







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Chiasson Impressive In Oxford Pro Late Models


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OXFORD, Maine – Gary Chiasson of Peru, Maine, finished second on an afternoon when he almost elected to start at the rear of the field.

Chiasson led most of the Oxford Championship Series 40-lap Pro Late Model feature Sunday afternoon at Oxford Plains Speedway before being moved out of the lead by another competitor, and he held on to finish second in just his second career start in the division.


Considering he almost opted to start at the rear of the field over concerns about how his car was handling, it turned out to be a pretty good day for Chiasson.

“The shocks aren't really right right now. They're not really doing what we want them to do, but it was a different set than what we had on there last week,” Chiasson said. “We were hoping for a Top-10 car, so we'll take second any day.”

Chiasson began his day by scoring a win from the pole in the first of two 12-lap qualifying races on the day.

“We've got to figure it out still, but we love (this division),” he said. “Luckily, everybody else was hung up in the back. We had a mishap last week, and if we hadn't had that, we probably would have started mid-pack and had a lot tougher time coming up through.”

The No. 71 Chevrolet is out of the Crazy Horse Racing stable, and the veteran driver said that the South Paris-based chassis builder did most of the work to convert the car from an ACT-legal Late Model to a Pro Late Model this offseason.

“It wasn't bad at all, Crazy Horse did everything for me mostly,” Chiasson said. “I didn't do much at all – we got the car back from Mitch, painted it, lettered it and two days later drove it over here.”

THERIAULT SEVENTH AT BEECH RIDGE: Austin Theriault of Fort Kent, Maine, finished seventh in the PASS North Series Southern Maine Chrysler Dodge Jeep 150 at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway in Scarborough, Maine, on Saturday.

It was the third straight Top-10 for the Brad Keselowski Racing development driver in PASS North Series competition, dating back to his victory at Oxford Plains last October.

“We have a couple more races up here in Maine. I think we'll have a shot at winning one of them,” Theriault said. “We're getting closer every time. We kind of ended with a bang last year, winning at Oxford, but it was definitely a wakeup call at the beginning of the year at Oxford (two weeks ago).

“We made some gains. It can only get better. I'm encouraged. We'll get better next time.”

HINKLEY, DAVIS STRONG AT DEVIL'S BOWL: New Hampshire driver Luke Hinkley finished a season-best seventh in the ACT Late Model Tour Spring Green 113 at Devil's Bowl Speedway in West Haven, Vt., on Sunday.

Hinkley, who posted the fastest time in the morning practice session for one of the tour's signature events, qualified an impressive 10th in the 30-car field and ran inside the Top-10 throughout the afternoon.

His teammate, Todd Davis, was equally strong. Davis qualified fifth and finished 11th.

For both drivers, it marked their best starting and finishing positions of the 2013 season.


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'The Lady in Green' Once Again Meets 'The Lady in Black'

In addition to the Advance below, please see the attached Team Report which contains a crew roster, statistics and notes for Danica Patrick and the No. 10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet SS fielded by Stewart-Haas Racing.


For Immediate Release


Contact Joe Crowley

True Speed Communication

704-875-3388 x 805 or Joe.Crowley@TrueSpeedCommunication.com


Online Media Kit Available at: www.TrueSpeedMedia.com




KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (May 7, 2013) – It’s been called the toughest of all tracks on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule. So much so that Darlington (S.C.) Raceway years ago was nicknamed “The Track Too Tough To Tame.”


Darlington is an egg-shaped oval 1.366 miles in length – the odd shape because the western portion of the oval needed a tighter radius on the turns as founder Harold Brasington promised Sherman Ramsey, who owned a farm next to the property, that he wouldn’t disturb his minnow pond when he built the track in 1949.


The odd shape also means that, to find the fast way around the track, drivers run against the outside walls in each turn, sometimes brushing up against the wall and thus earning what has affectionately become known as a “Darlington Stripe” on the right side of the car. And the black marks left on the walls by the tires rubbing up against them all race weekend have led to the track’s other nickname – “The Lady in Black.”


For the third time in her NASCAR career and second in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, “The Lady in Green,” Danica Patrick, driver of the green No.10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), will meet “The Lady in Black,” when she competes in Saturday night’s Southern 500 Sprint Cup race at Darlington.


Patrick made her NASCAR debut at Darlington last year in the Nationwide Series by starting 15th and finishing and impressive 12th. One night later, she made just her second Sprint Cup start ever and finished 31st.


Her weekend impressed several NASCAR observers as Darlington is known as a track that is tough on first-timers. But “The Lady in Green” completed 513 of 519 laps in her first weekend at “The Lady in Black,” and did so without being in an accident – also a tough feat for a rookie, much less a seasoned veteran.


Patrick returns this weekend hoping to improve on her Darlington resume and perhaps tame the track that is “Too Tough To Tame.”


DANICA PATRICK, Driver of the No. 10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing:


Are you more comfortable this year heading into Darlington than last year?


“Last year, I ran there in the (Sprint) Cup race and it was basically my first Cup race, really. I ran Daytona, but Darlington was like getting thrown into the deep end. That was the purpose of it, to get seat time so I’m not thinking or dreading going there this weekend worrying about what that’s going to look like for me and how it’s going to feel. I have an idea now of how it’s going to feel and what needs to be done.”


Talk about your experience at Darlington last year. 


“I had never seen Darlington until that race weekend. So that’s always a bit interesting when you go somewhere you’ve never been. But I accomplished all the things I wanted to accomplish. Things went good on the Nationwide side. On the Cup side, my goals were to be respectable out there. I think I held my own. And the other one was to finish, and both of those things happened. So, overall, it was a good night. I definitely got a feel for all the elements. Starts, restarts and pitting, and all that stuff. Just how to get runs on cars. What to do when the car feels a certain way. Which lines to take, and to accommodate for the car and how it feels.


TONY GIBSON, Crew chief of the No. 10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing:


Overall thoughts on Darlington?


“Hopefully, she remembers what she learned last year. It’s hard because we only race at Darlington once a year, so it’s hard to remember that far back, sometimes. The biggest thing with Darlington is to race the racetrack, not anybody else. That’s what we did last time. She stayed out of trouble because she raced the racetrack, so that’s what she’s got to do again. I think that’s what impressed me there last time is she didn’t get caught up in trying to race everyone. She raced the racetrack and took what the car gave her. Our goal is to go there and have a clean race and finish. Typically, if you can do that, you can finish 25th or better and that’s what we’re going to try to do.”









Laps Led




× Southern 500 (NSCS)



Running, 362/368





×VFW Sport Clips 200 (NNS)



Running, 151/151



× Race length extended due to green-white-checkered finish


- TSC –



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