No. 12 Penske Truck Rental Dodge
Sharpie Mini 300 - Bristol Motor Speedway
March 15, 2008
Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the No. 12 Penske Truck Rental Dodge Charger for Penske Racing, will make his NASCAR Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series debuts at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend. Hornish Jr. has visited the famed .533-mile oval as a spectator but has never taken to the banks of the track in a racecar.
Hornish Jr. has a career total of 11 Nationwide Series (formerly Busch Series) starts. His best finish of 15th came at Atlanta Motor Speedway in March of 2007.
In a total of three short track starts in Nationwide Series competition, Hornish Jr. has an average starting position of 28.6 and an average finishing spot of 39.3.
Hornish Jr. and the No. 12 Penske Truck Rental team tested at Virginia International Raceway this week in preparation for the upcoming Nationwide Series road course race in Mexico City on April 20.
4/15/08: Hornish Jr. is scheduled to pull ¿double duty¿ at Texas Motor Speedway, competing in both the Nationwide and Cup Series races.
PBC-007: This weekend¿s car last raced at Bristol Motor Speedway in August 2007 and it was driven by Ryan Newman.
PBC-018: The backup car for this weekend was last driven by Ryan Newman at Darlington Raceway in May 2007.
Sam Hornish Jr. on Bristol Motor Speedway
"This will be my first NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway. I¿m very excited to run both races this weekend because the extra seat time will be invaluable experience for me. I¿m ready to get back on track in the Nationwide Series after our disappointment in Las Vegas. (Crew chief) Matt (Gimbel) and the guys put together great race cars and I am excited to see what we can accomplish this season.¿
Crew Chief Matt Gimbel on Bristol Motor Speedway
¿We are bringing a race car to Bristol that has a proven track record there. We had a setback in Las Vegas during qualifying but I feel that we will have a very successful weekend at Bristol. The recent resurfacing of the track really changed the face of racing at Bristol. In that sense, the playing field has been somewhat leveled. The most important thing this weekend is to get Sam seat time and turn as many laps as possible to help him in the Sprint Cup race on Sunday.¿