RCR Event Preview – Pocono Raceway / Iowa Speedway

Richard Childress Racing at Pocono Raceway … In 159 starts at Pocono Raceway, RCR team owner Richard Childress has two wins, both with Dale Earnhardt, who won on July 19, 1987 and July 18, 1993. Additionally, RCR has earned one pole award, 16 top-five and 54 top-10 finishes with 610 laps led at the uniquely-shaped three-turn track. Childress, a former driver in NASCAR’s top division, contributed two of those top-10 finishes under the RCR banner.

RCR in the MENCS … In 2,886 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series starts dating back to 1969, RCR has amassed 48 pole awards,108 wins, 487 top-five finishes and 1,058 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.

American Muscle

Catch the Action … The Pennsylvania 400 at Pocono Raceway will be televised live Sunday, July 29 beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN and will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

This Week’s American Ethanol Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at Pocono Raceway … Dillon has made nine Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series starts at Pocono Raceway, earning his best finish of 13th in August 2015, August 2016 and June 2017. He has three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at the triangle-shaped track, finishing seventh in 2010, fifth in 2011 and posting a win in 2014.

E15: Fueling Sunday Drives Everywhere … Whether Austin is racing on Sunoco Green E15 or fueling up his truck to go to dinner, E15 is always powering his Sunday drives. E15 gives all drivers an engine smart, earth kind fuel option. It delivers higher octane and burns cleaner, plus it’s the most tested fuel ever. American drivers have surpassed more than 3 billion miles on it. Find out how E15 can fuel your Sunday drives too at GetBiofuel.com.

3-on-3 Basketball for a Cause … Austin and Ty Dillon are hosting the 4th Annual 3-on-3 Celebrity Basketball Tournament presented by The Dow Chemical Company to benefit the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma at Catawba College in Salisbury, N.C., on Wednesday, August 1. The 16-team, double-elimination tournament will start at 3 p.m. General admission and parking for the event are free. Autographed memorabilia and other items will be available for auction at the event. Concessions will be available for purchase. For more information, visit https://saveinjuredkids.org/basketball/

Meet Dillon … Meet Coca-Cola Racing driver and Daytona 500 Champion Austin Dillon on behalf of Coca-Cola on Saturday, July 28 at 7 p.m. ET in the Keystone Ballroom at the Mohegan Sun (1280 Pennsylvania 315, Wilkes-Barre, PA).

What was the big take away from the June Pocono race that you can either apply or not apply when we go back there in a couple of weeks?
“Our car was pretty solid at that race. We wanted to work on Turn 3 quite a bit. You know there is no Turn 4 there, so Turn 3 was pretty key and we struggled a little bit on entry and exit of Turn 3. That is where I’ve been good at in the past, so we will want to work on that area.”

Explain a bad Turn 3. How much does it cost you going down the front stretch?
“Just think of it like running a mile and losing a shoe. It just kills you. It’s not fun when your car is not turning off that corner, and you are tight and you can’t get back to the gas.”


This Week’s Bass Pro Shops / Cabela’s Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at Pocono Raceway … Ryan Newman will make his 604th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start when he competes at the track known as the Tricky Triangle. In 33 starts at Pocono Raceway, Newman has visited victory lane in the second summer event of 2003. The “Rocket Man” also owns two pole awards. In total, he’s recorded nine top-five and 14 top-10 finishes. He has led 185 laps in competition. The South Bend, Indiana native has an average start of 11.2 and average finish of 13.2. In the last 10 races at the 2.5-mile track, the Richard Childress Racing driver ranks 10th in most points earned.

Huntin’, Fishin’, and Lovin’ Every Day … Newman, an avid outdoorsman, hunter, fisherman and conservationist will have Bass Pro Shops/Cabela’s on board the No. 31 Camaro ZL1 for select races in 2018. Bass Pro Shops is North America’s premier outdoor and conservation company. Founded in 1972 when avid young angler Johnny Morris began selling tackle out of his father’s liquor store in Springfield, Missouri, today the company provides customers with unmatched offerings spanning premier destination retail, outdoor equipment manufacturing, world-class resort destinations and more. In 2017 Bass Pro Shops acquired Cabela’s to create a “best-of-the-best” experience with superior products, dynamic locations and outstanding customer service. Bass Pro Shops also operates White River Marine Group, offering an unsurpassed collection of industry-leading boat brands, and Big Cedar Lodge, America’s Premier Wilderness Resort. Under the visionary conservation leadership of Johnny Morris, Bass Pro Shops is a national leader in protecting habitat and introducing families to the outdoors and has been named by Forbes as “one of America’s Best Employers.”

Meet Newman … On Sunday, Newman is scheduled to visit the Team Chevy Stage located in Pocono’s Midway. He’ll participate in a Q & A session starting at 11:45 a.m. ET.

What is the most important part of that track to get right?
“The most important part of Pocono is getting off Turn 3 just because the front straightaway is so long. You have the opportunity to make up the time or lose the time if you don’t get off the corner well.”

What is your take on the restarts at Pocono Raceway?
“I think on the restarts at Pocono, you spend more time looking out the mirror trying to figure out what the guys behind you are doing to time themselves to lay back to get a gap, so they can get a run on you. Transmission wise, it’s not ideal … second, third and fourth gear there getting into Turn 1. A lot of guys are a little bit different so that makes the timing on the restarts a challenge as well as getting caught up going four or five wide.”

RCR stays at Kalahari Resorts and Conventions. It’s a popular destination for your family. Talk about that.
“Kalahari is my daughters’ favorite place to go when we are racing in Pocono. It is an ideal destination for families with kids of all ages to spend time together and have fun. Kalahari is a one-of-a-kind experience, and everything you could possibly want is there. I’m proud to have them as a partner and providing RCR a special place to stay after a long workday at the track.”



Richard Childress Racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Iowa Speedway … In 50 Series starts at the 7/8-mile speedway, RCR has captured one victory with Elliott Sadler in 2012. The Welcome, North Carolina, organization has completed 12,411 laps of the 12,596 (98.5 percent) that they have competed. RCR has accumulated three pole awards, 14 top-five finishes, 28 top-10 finishes, led 532 laps and averages a starting position of 10. and finishing position of 11.5.

Loudon Review … Matt Tifft was the highest-finishing RCR driver when he placed fifth in the New Hampshire 200 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Austin Dillon finished 10th and Daniel Hemric finished 11th.

The Points … Daniel Hemric and Matt Tifft currently sit first and ninth, respectively, in the Xfinity Series driver point standings. The No. 3 RCR team is currently 14th 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 U.S. Cellular 250 presented by The Rasmussen Group at Iowa Speedway will be televised live on Saturday, July 28, beginning at 5 p.m. ET on NBCSN. It will also be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio Channel 90.


This Week’s American Ethanol e15 Chevrolet Camaro at Iowa Speedway … Matt Tifft has three previous NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at Iowa Speedway, collecting his best finish of ninth at the track earlier this season. The 21-year-old driver also has two NASCAR K&N Pro Series East starts at the 7/8-mile speedway, collecting a highest finish of seventh in 2013.

e15: Fueling Saturday Drives Everywhere … e15 fuels Saturday 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 Saturday drives too at GetBiofuel.com and AmericanEthanolRacing.com.

Meet Tifft … Fans can meet Tifft when he participates alongside his RCR teammates, Daniel Hemric and Shane Lee, in the Xfinity Series autograph session beginning at 12:30 p.m. local time on Saturday, July 28 near the track grandstands.

You earned a top-10 finish at Iowa Speedway earlier this season. What were the big takeaways from that race that you either can or can’t apply this weekend?
“The thing we hopefully won’t apply is our short run speed. What we will hopefully apply is our long run speed. I think we were about the best car out there during the longer runs. We just lacked the take-off speed. Daniel (Hemric) looked really good on short run speed, so we’ll look to learn a little bit from what they were able to do. I feel like we’ve done our homework on how to be ready for the return to Iowa. This weekend is one I think everyone has circled as a place to grab their first win at, with it being a stand-alone and such a fun track. I really hope we amplify what we did there last time. We had a great Chevrolet Camaro, but just needed time for the rubber to build on the race track.”

Where were you most comfortable out there? We saw cars using all different kinds of lanes throughout the race.
“For us, it seemed like the top line was key. However, it took until the whole field went through new tires for us to be able to run up there. My biggest issue was fighting a little bit of front turn. I couldn’t go up there and make speed right away. It would take until the track got a little slimy and greasy for us to really get going up there. The good thing about Iowa is that you do have options, but you need to make sure your putting your car where it needs to be in order to get through the field.”

This Week’s Childress Vineyards Chevrolet Camaro at Iowa Speedway … Shane Lee has one previous NASCAR Xfinity Series start at Iowa Speedway, in which he started 14th and finished 16th during the spring race earlier this year. Lee also has one ARCA Racing Series start at the .875-mile track, where he had his best finish of 11th coming after he started on the pole in the July 2017 race.

About Childress Vineyards … Childress Vineyards is a premier winery located at the southern gateway of the Yadkin Valley in Lexington, North Carolina. Owned by Richard Childress, NASCAR team owner and Hall of Fame member, Childress Vineyards has been producing award-winning wines with the expertise of Winemaker Mark Frizsolowski. Open daily for tours, tastings, and lunch in the Bistro. Information about Childress Vineyards can be found on Facebook at facebook.com/childresswines/, on Twitter at @ChildressWines and on Instagram at Instagram.com/childresswines.

Meet Lee … Fans can meet Lee when he takes part in the Xfinity Series autograph session from 12:30-1:15 p.m. local time on Saturday, July 28 under the grandstands of Iowa Speedway.

You finished 16th at Iowa Speedway in June, what are you looking to improve on this time around with the No. 3 team?
“I think we had a better No. 3 Childress Vineyards Chevrolet Camaro at Iowa than where we finished in June. We just had a couple miscues that I think hampered our overall race, but we have a good idea of how to fix those things and get a much better result this time around. We were in the top five, top 10 for both practices so I feel confident in what we have and what we’re bringing to the track. I really do like Iowa Speedway. It’s one of my favorite tracks, we just needed a little bit more last time. The Xfinity cars are a tad bit faster than the ARCA ones, so having that race weekend under my belt will help too.”


This Week’s South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet Camaro at Iowa Speedway … Hemric will be making his fourth career NASCAR Xfinity Series start at Iowa Speedway during this weekend’s U.S. Cellular 250. He has one top-five and two top-10 finishes in his three previous starts at the 0.875-mile track, including a third-place finish there in June.

Rearview Mirror: New Hampshire … Hemric’s 11th-place finish at New Hampshire Motor Speedway was not a reflection on how the No. 21 South Point Hotel & Casino driver and his team performed throughout the event. Starting from the sixth position, Hemric was a factor inside the top five for much of the race. Using pit strategy, crew chief Danny Stockman called for two tires on the final green flag stop of the day, which put Hemric second after the stop. However, a caution flew right after the stop and bunched the field back up, eliminating the team’s strategy play. On the ensuing restarts and before the checkered flag flew, Hemric slipped to 11th. Despite the disappointing finish, Hemric took sole control of the Xfinity Series point standings for the first time in his career.

This Week at the South Point Hotel & Casino … Fans visiting the South Point Hotel & Casino this weekend have the opportunity to see the Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association “Lakota Western US Championship” Western Gift Show in the South Point Arena & Equestrian Center. This event is free to the public. More information at southpointcasino.com.

Meet the Driver … Fans have the opportunity to meet Hemric at the Xfinity Series autograph session under the grandstands on Saturday, July 28, starting at 12:30 p.m. local time.

Feeding Those in Need … Prior to this weekend’s U.S. Cellular 250, Hemric visited Iowa Speedway to help the non-profit organization Meals From The Heartland package over 25,000 meals for those in need. The meals will be distributed to 11 different countries throughout the world.

You finished third at Iowa Speedway in June. What was the biggest thing you learned that weekend that you can bring back here for this weekend’s race?
“Iowa Speedway is one of the most fun short tracks we race at. When I went there the first couple times in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, I could never get a feel for what I was asking for out of the trucks. My crew chief Danny Stockman did a good job each time we’ve gone to Iowa of giving me a good feel. I know going there that my car is going to race pretty good and be in contention at some point throughout the race. Running third there in June gave us a really solid notebook to go off of and build from. It is not very often you go back to the same racetrack with the same conditions in that short of a timespan. We’ll apply a lot of stuff that worked well and a lot of stuff we learned in practice to not do and try to take advantage of it.”

Where are you most comfortable running at Iowa? With it being a multi-groove racetrack, drivers can run on the bottom, in the middle and even all the way up by the SAFER barriers.
“I felt like taking off at the start of the race in June our stuff could run right around the bottom initially as good as most, then as everybody started to move up and it became a momentum gain in that second and third lane. There weren’t many cars that could make good speed running on the bottom. The key for everybody going back is going to be figuring out how to have that maneuverability in our car. That is what our focus is going there this weekend. If we can get the maneuverability in our car, we can take advantage of a situation where if you get in a position where you need to go to the bottom to complete a pass we can do it. The good thing is that we’ll have just about the same track conditions and weather conditions as we did in June, so it’s going to be fun.”

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.


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