RCR Event Preview – ISM Raceway

by Official Release On Tue, Nov. 06, 2018

Richard Childress Racing’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series History at ISM Raceway … Team owner Richard Childress has six victories at ISM Raceway, ranking him third on the all-time car owner victories list at the Avondale, Ariz. facility. This includes wins with Ryan Newman in March 2017, along with Kevin Harvick in Nov. 2013, Nov. 2012 and March and Nov. 2006. Prior to that, Dale Earnhardt won the Checker 500 on Nov. 4, 1990. In 117 starts at ISM Raceway, the Welcome, North Carolina based organization boasts 19 top-five and 42 top-10 finishes.

RCR in the MENCS … In 2,915 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series starts dating back to 1969, RCR has amassed 48 pole awards,108 wins, 488 top-five finishes and 1,066 top-10 finishes, with an average starting position of 17.8 and an average finishing position of 16.2. RCR has earned 15 total championships (six Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championships with Earnhardt in 1986, ’87, ’90, ’91, ’93 and ’94, six NASCAR Xfinity Series titles, two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series titles and one ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards title) and was the first organization to win titles in NASCAR’s three national series.

Interactive RCR … For up-to-date news and exclusive content, visit RCR’s corporate Twitter page – @RCRracing – along with the RCR Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team Twitter page – @RCRCup, and driver Twitter pages @austindillon3 and @RyanJNewman. Information about the 15-time championship winning organization can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RichardChildressRacing and at www.RCRracing.com along with official driver pages – http://www.facebook.com/austindillon3 and www.facebook.com/RyanNewmanNASCAR.

Catch the Action … The ISM 500 at ISM Raceway will be televised live Sunday, November 11 beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET on NBC and will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.


This Week’s American Ethanol Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at ISM Raceway … Dillon has nine Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series starts at ISM Raceway to his credit, earning his best finish of ninth in April 2016 and his best starting position of seventh in November 2016.

e15: Fueling Sunday Drives Everywhere … e15 fuels Sunday drives everywhere.NASCAR has raced over 11 million miles on Sunoco Green E15 made with 15 percent American Ethanol, and consumers have driven more than 5 billion miles on e15. It gives all drivers an engine smart, earth kind fuel option. And, e15 delivers higher octane and burns cleaner, plus it’s the most tested fuel ever. Find out how e15 can fuel your Sunday drives too at GetBiofuel.com and AmericanEthanolRacing.com.

ISM Raceway is called a short track, it doesn’t race like one though, does it?
“No, and then we are flipping sides this race, too, in that the start/finish line has been moved to what used to be the backstretch. We’re going to be diving into what used to be turns 3 and 4 and that will be turns 1 and 2 now. Restarts will be interesting to see how things file and get going there because you’re going to be running into the flat into the corner instead of the banked. I’m excited to see all of the changes that ISM Raceway has made to improve the fan experience.”


This Week’s Caterpillar Global Mining Camaro ZL1 at ISM Raceway … Ryan Newman will make his 619th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start when he competes one final time this season at ISM Raceway. In 32 Cup Series events, Newman owns two victories. He won last year’s March event as well as the spring race in 2010. Newman owns four pole awards, 10 top-five and 12 top-10 finishes. His average start is 13.8 and average finish is 17.0. He’s led 242 laps in competition. When it comes to the last 10 events at the raceway, he ranks fifth in most driver points earned.

Delivering a Better Bottom Line … Caterpillar produces some of the biggest mining trucks in the world. And the goal of every Cat large mining truck is to help mining companies haul more material at the lowest possible cost. Cat trucks are efficient and reliable, productive and profitable. What does that mean to the mine site? It means a better bottom line.

This week Caterpillar is introducing two new large truck models that give them the broadest lineup in the industry. About 100 people at today’s race are going to get a sneak peek at those two new trucks – the 796 AC and 798 AC – and see what’s new with the rest of the lineup later this week.

Whether their customers are moving copper, iron, gold or coal, Caterpillar has a truck for every mining application. These trucks serve as the base for MineStar Command, which allows fully autonomous hauling. That means Cat trucks can move material around the clock without an operator on board.

How does it feel to race at a track where you’ve earned your most recent victory?
It’s always fun to come back to a track where I have won before and where I have won most recently with RCR. It would mean a lot to win here again and close out my time with RCR on a high note. It’s going to be bittersweet. It’s going to take a car that can run well on both ends of the track to have another shot at it.

“This place has become a real show piece for the race fans. Back in March I got to tour the facility and see what all they were doing in the stands, the midway, a new pedestrian tunnel – all the renovations that will boost the overall fan experience. It’s impressive. We’ve got close to 200 people from Cat Mining who are coming from all over the world and for them to not only see us put on a good race but experience the race in a whole new way will be awesome.”

For the second-straight week, you’ve got quite a Caterpillar contingent coming to the track and using your No. 31 Camaro ZL1 to help launch new products to customers and fans. Thoughts?
“Phoenix in the fall is always a big deal for Caterpillar. They host people at the track from around the world. This year our guests are going to get to see a demonstration of their new ultra-class trucks and then after the race, they’ll head to Tucson and visit Caterpillar’s mining headquarters. They’ll get to see how the trucks are designed, built for maximum life and help deliver a better bottom line. I wish I could be on hand on Monday because they’re unveiling of a new 410-ton truck. It’s one of the biggest in the world.”
Richard Childress Racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at ISM Raceway … In 81 Series starts at the one-mile paved oval, RCR has captured three victories with drivers Kevin Harvick (2006), Clint Bowyer (2007) and Elliott Sadler (2012). The Welcome, North Carolina, organization has accumulated two pole awards, 25 top-five finishes, 46 top-10 finishes, led 590 laps and averages a starting position of 12.1 and finishing position of 12.0. RCR has completed 15,825 laps of the 16,147 (98 percent) that they have competed.



Texas Review … Matt Tifft was the highest RCR finisher in seventh place last weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. Daniel Hemric finished 10th, while Shane Lee finished 23rd in the Texas 300.

Round of 8 Concludes … This weekend’s race at ISM Raceway marks the second elimination race in the 2018 NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoffs. The Championship 4 will be decided at the conclusion of Saturday’s event.

The Points … Daniel Hemric and Matt Tifft currently sit third and fifth, respectively, in the NASCAR Xfinity Series driver point standings. The No. 3 RCR team is currently 10th in the series’ owner point standings.

Social Media … To keep up with the latest updates from RCR’s Xfinity Series teams, follow @RCRracing and @RCRNXS on Twitter. Updates can also be found via RCR’s Facebook Page and Instagram (@RCRracing).

Catch the Action … Coverage of this weekend’s Whelen Trusted to Perform 200 will be televised live on Saturday, November 17, beginning at 3:30 p.m. Eastern Time on NBC. It will also broadcast live on MRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio, Channel 90.


This Week’s GoGreen Equipment Chevrolet Camaro at ISM Raceway … Matt Tifft has three previous NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at ISM Raceway, securing his best finish of seventh during the spring event at the mile-long track earlier this year. Tifft also has three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts and two top-10 finishes at ISM Raceway. Tifft also has one NASCAR K&N Pro Series West start at the track under his belt.

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Playoff Picture … With just one race left until the Championship 4 are determined, Matt Tifft is currently sixth in the Xfinity Series Playoff standings. Fourteen points separate him from the final transfer spot, which is currently occupied by RCR teammate Daniel Hemric.

Press Pass … Tifft will be meeting with NASCAR media members during an Xfinity Series Playoff media availability at 11 a.m. local time at the ISM Raceway media center. Tune in via nascar.com/presspass.

It’s a whole new ball game at ISM Raceway this weekend with the new configuration they have. What are you focused on most as we head to an essentially new track?
“Well, what is good for us heading into this weekend is our flat track program is really strong and something we can still rely on heading into Phoenix. But certainly, with the finish line being moved to what used to be the ‘short cut’ it’s going to create a situation where I think the Championship 4, well at least the three open spots, could be decided off that track change itself. Last year, there was more of a typical race flow that happens there, but I don’t know if we’ll have that again this time. It may not be the Xfinity Series, but I feel like one of the three series is going to have the Championship 4 affected by the placement of the finish line whether it’s during a restart, stage end or race finish. I’m glad we have the Truck Series racing Friday night as the guinea pigs to see how it all plays out.”


This Week’s Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma Chevrolet Camaro at ISM Raceway … Shane Lee will be making his debut start at ISM Raceway this weekend in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.

Race to Give with the Childress Institute … On Tuesday, Nov. 13, the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma encourages race fans across the nation to support “Race to Give” Day and help save injured kids. Traumatic injuries are the number one killer of kids. Since Richard and Judy Childress co-founded the Institute in 2008, the organization has raised awareness, and pushed for research and advocacy that helped reduce pediatric trauma deaths by 25 percent. In honor of the race to save injured kids, Lee and his RCR team will be hosting a pediatric trauma survivor during Saturday’s race. Fans can do their part to join in the race to save injured kids by donating at saveinjuredkids.org/give/. Learn more about the institute by visiting saveinjuredkids.org.

Meet Lee … Fans have the chance to meet Lee when he participates in a Q&A session alongside RCR teammate Daniel Hemric at ISM Raceway’s new infield fan zone. The Q&A session is scheduled to take place beginning at 1:45 p.m. local time on Friday, November 9.

Even though it will be your first start at ISM Raceway, what do you think about the reconfiguration they are debuting this weekend?
“With ISM Raceway putting the start-finish line in what used to be the middle of Turn 2, I could see restarts, stage finishes and the actual finish of the race being a little chaotic. In a way, I think I can almost benefit from not having raced at Phoenix before. I am treating this weekend like any other weekend when I haven’t made a start at a track, so it’s not like I will be going there anxious about the repave and how different it is from the last time the series was there. ISM is a little bit bigger than a short track, but not by much, and we’ve really excelled on the smaller tracks this year. I’m looking forward to getting out there and seeing what I can do.”

You have a special paint scheme this weekend that draws attention to a cause close to Richard Childress. What’s it like to be helping to spread that message?
“This week we have the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma on our Chevrolet Camaro, which Richard started with Judy Childress in 2008. CIPT is holding their own ‘Race to Give Day’ next Tuesday, Nov. 13 and are encouraging race fans to help save injured kids by donating at saveinjuredkids.org. Pediatric trauma is the number one killer of kids, but with the work of the Childress Institute we can change that and save a lot of lives.”
This Week’s South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet Camaro at ISM Raceway … Hermic will be making his fourth NASCAR Xfinity Series start at ISM Raceway during this weekend’s 200-lap race. In his previous three starts at the Avondale, Arizona track, Hemric has two top-10 qualifying efforts and an average finish of 6.0.

Rearview Mirror: Texas … Starting from the ninth position, Hemric wasted no time moving toward the front of the field in the opening laps of Saturday’s race at Texas Motor Speedway. Hemric took the lead for the first time on Lap 25 and kept the No. 21 South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet out front until the green-and-white checkered flag flew, giving him his ninth stage win of the season. Hemric remained a factor at the front of the field, leading a total of 42 laps. A late-race pit stop put Hemric mid-pack for the second-to-last restart but he had fresher tires than anyone ahead of him for a six-lap shootout. However, contact after the restart sent the No. 21 South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet spinning in Turn 3 to bring out the final caution of the day. After pitting for tires following the spin, Hemric fought his way back to the 10th position when the checkered flag flew. The 10th-place finish was Hemric’s 21st top 10 in 31 races.


This Week at the South Point … Fans visiting the South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet have the opportunity to see the American Bucking Bull Inc. World Finals at the Arena & Equestrian Center from Nov. 6 – 10. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit southpointcasino.com.

Meet the Driver … Fans have the opportunity to participate in a Q&A session Hemric with teammate Shane Lee on the stage behind Victory Lane on Friday, Nov. 9, starting at 1:45 p.m. local time.

You head to Phoenix in the fourth spot in the Playoff standings with a 12-point advantage over the final cutoff position. How does that impact your approach for this weekend’s final race of the Round of 8?
“We’re going to Phoenix with a 12-point advantage, but it’s just a number. It is no different than when we went to Phoenix for the cutoff race last year in that situation. We just have to go there, do our jobs and execute. I have faith that everyone on this No. 21 South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet team is prepared and ready for the challenge. I really like racing at Phoenix and can’t wait to get there.”

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