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RCR Event Preview – Martinsville Speedway

Richard Childress Racing at Martinsville Speedway… In 177 NASCAR Cup Series starts at Martinsville Speedway, Richard Childress Racing has earned four pole awards and posted seven victories with drivers Dale Earnhardt (five times), Ricky Rudd (1983) and Kevin Harvick (2011). RCR Chevrolet teams have earned 30 top-five and 63 top-10 finishes at Martinsville dating back to the team’s first start there on April 10, 1972. Richard Childress, a former driver in NASCAR’s top division, contributed four of those top-10 finishes from 1976-1978.

With the NASCAR Xfinity Series returning to Martinsville Speedway in 2020 after a 14-year hiatus from the Virginia short track, the Welcome N.C. organization has only three NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at the half-mile paperclip. In 2006, Kevin Harvick scored the victory, followed by a runner-up finish from Clint Bowyer. Collectively, Harvick and Bowyer combined to lead 207 out of the 250 laps en route to a 1-2 finish for RCR.

Catch the Action… The NASCAR Xfinity Series Cook Out 250 will be televised live Friday, April 9, beginning at 8 p.m. ET on FS1 and will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.

The NASCAR Cup Series Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 will be televised live Saturday, April 10, beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET on FS1 and will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.

Austin Dillon and the No. 3 American Ethanol Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE at Martinsville Speedway… In 14 NASCAR Cup Series starts at Martinsville Speedway, Dillon earned his best finish of fourth in April 2016 at the half-mile short track after starting deep in the field from the 29th spot. He also has a fifth-place finish at the track (April 2017). He has made four appearances at the track in the NASCAR Truck Series, earning his best finish of third in October 2011.

Delivering Performance on and Off the Racetrack… Dillon races on Sunoco Green E15 fuel made with 15 percent American Ethanol. Ethanol is the most effective and least expensive source of octane available and it also burns cleaner and cooler than gasoline. All those factors mean that ethanol helps drive peak engine performance whether you’re in a racecar or on your way to the grocery store. And, ethanol helps keep our air cleaner and our environment healthier by reducing toxic and greenhouse gas emissions. Learn more about why ethanol is the smart choice for your engine, your wallet and our environment at americanethanolracing.com.

TV Time… Dillon is scheduled to serve as a guest analyst for FOX Sports 1’s coverage of this weekend’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Martinsville Speedway. Tune in beginning at 8 p.m. ET on Friday, April 9 on FS1.

AUSTIN DILLON QUOTE:
How do you feel about short tracks like Martinsville Speedway?
“I really like Martinsville Speedway. It is one of those places where you go through so many emotions during the course the race. Someone might bump you and that give-and-take can get frustrating. It’s a short little paper clip, with hard-braking corners. We’ve had some solid runs there, and I think that we can go back and do it again. We’d love to have a good run at Martinsville Speedway.”

Tyler Reddick and the No. 8 Childress Vineyards Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE at Martinsville Speedway… Tyler Reddick has two NASCAR Cup Series starts at Martinsville Speedway, with his best finish of 16th coming during last year’s spring event. Reddick also has six NASCAR Truck Series starts at the track in which he collected two top-five and three top-10 finishes.

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 produces 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.

TYLER REDDICK QUOTES:
Last year was your first time racing at Martinsville Speedway since 2016. What are some things you learned that will be helpful for this weekend?
“One thing I think that really stood out not just to me, but a lot of the drivers was how hot that June Martinsville race was. Everyone is so used to it being cold at Martinsville that the heat really took everyone by surprise. So I’m definitely taking my hydration seriously this week to avoid being overheated this time around. We also saw the track change a lot during both races, and we needed to do a better job of keeping up with it. That’ll be a major focus this time for us. This track is one of my crew chief’s favorites so I’m confident we’ll have a good plan for our No. 8 Childress Vineyards Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE on Saturday night.”

We just wrapped up the only off-weekend for about four months. What do you and the No. 8 team need to do over the next stretch of races to get in a better spot to contend for a Playoff position?
“Well, we can really take two ways to get there. We can win and lock ourselves in that way or we need to run top five and top 10 from here on out. That’s a tall ask for sure, but I have faith in my team. You have to be relevant to win races, and for us that means finding ways to get track position early in the race and get some stage points and a good finish. We also need to work on minimizing mistakes that took us out of Playoff contention last year and put solid races together from start to finish. Unfortunately, without qualifying it gets a little tougher since we start farther back than we maybe would if we had a chance to qualify. It’s hard to then know what we have at these tracks until we get up near some decent cars and by then it’s normally late in the race. Hopefully, we’ll turn a corner this week at Martinsville and put together a good race to kick of this big stretch of races with.”

Myatt Snider and the No. 2 TaxSlayer Chevrolet Camaro at Martinsville Speedway… Snider has one career NASCAR Xfinity Series start at Martinsville Speedway, which came at the end of the 2020 season. The Charlotte, N.C. native has also competed in three NASCAR Truck Series race at the paperclip half-mile, earning a third-place result in the 2018 fall race and a pair of sixth-place efforts in the 2018 and 2019 spring races respectively.

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MYATT SNIDER QUOTES:
You’ve raced quite a few times at Martinsville Speedway throughout your career. Do you enjoy going to the Virginia short track?
“Racing at Martinsville is always a personal one for me. I’ve competed in a bunch of late model races there, got really close to a couple Truck Series wins there and it’s a track that has a lot of importance to me. I’ve run so many races there before that it semi feels like a home race for me personally. It’s important to me to get the clock this Friday night.”

What is your game plan heading into Martinsville Speedway?
“Martinsville is quite the crazy race, because you never are that far away from another car. You can get out and build a good lead, but that’s really difficult to do since everyone is so close together. It can be a frustrating place for drivers, since you can’t get away and focus on what you are doing. There is always someone there to bump you out of the way or mess you up. That is what I think makes Martinsville one of the best tracks though. It forces you to be on your toes all the time and think as a driver which is what makes the racing product so good.”


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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