ANCEL Bidirectional Automotive Scanner

Hendrick Motorsports Media Advance: Iowa

Iowa Speedway
Sunday, June 16, 2024
0.875-Mile Oval
7:00 PM ET
Location: Newton, Iowa
TV: Fox
Event: NASCAR Cup Series (17 of 36)
Radio: SiriusXM, PRN

5 KYLE LARSON

Age: 31 (July 31, 1992)

Hometown: Elk Grove, California

Resides: Mooresville, North Carolina

Crew Chief: Cliff Daniels

Standings: 1st

No. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

WIN COUNTRY: On Sunday at Sonoma Raceway, Kyle Larson made the winning pass with eight laps to go to capture his third victory of the NASCAR Cup Series season. The Elk Grove, California, native also won at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March and Kansas Speedway in May. Following his triumph in northern California wine country, Larson reclaimed the top spot in the Cup standings and is now 14 points ahead of Hendrick Motorsports teammate Chase Elliott, who ranks second.

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY: Larson has won the two most recent Cup races held on Father’s Day. He went to victory lane at Michigan International Speedway on June 18, 2017, in the first Father’s Day event following the birth of his son, Owen. He won at Nashville Superspeedway on June 20, 2021, after the arrival of daughter Audrey. Sunday will be the first Father’s Day race since Larson and wife Katelyn welcomed son Cooper to the family.

SHORT TRACK SUCCESS: Sunday will mark the first Cup Series visit to the 0.875-mile Iowa Speedway. Larson, driver of the No. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, has competed at the Midwest short track twice in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, posting a pair of fifth-place finishes in 2013. At the Cup level, the 31-year-old driver has finished sixth or better in nine of the last 10 short track events. This year, Larson is the only driver in the series to finish in the top five in all three short track races.

IN GOOD COMPANY: In just his fourth year driving for Hendrick Motorsports, Larson has already accumulated 20 points-paying wins, which rank him third in team history. He trails only NASCAR Hall of Famers Jeff Gordon (93) and Jimmie Johnson (83) in victories for the organization, which has won Cup races with a record 20 different drivers.

QUICK WORK: Larson’s Sonoma win came in his 123rd Hendrick Motorsports start, making him the fastest driver to reach 20 Cup Series victories for the team. Gordon delivered his 20th win in his 125th start, and Johnson’s came in his 150th.

OUT FRONT: With 10 races to go in the regular season, Larson again sits atop the Cup Series standings. The 2021 champion also has accrued the most playoff points (22), stage wins (seven) and laps led (675) while being tied for most victories (three), top-five finishes (seven) and pole positions (three).

FOUR TIRES FAST: The No. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM pit crew holds the seventh-fastest average four-tire pit stop time in 2024 at 10.937 seconds. Larson’s pit crew consists of Blaine Anderson (front-tire changer), R.J. Barnette (tire carrier), Brandon Harder (fueler), Brandon Johnson (jackman) and Calvin Teague (rear-tire changer).

AWAY BUT ALWAYS AVAILABLE: In 2024, the No. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM team recognizes “home” events by wearing white firesuits and “away” with blue. Its home races come at tracks with nearby Hendrick Automotive Group car dealerships. This weekend, the team races away just outside of Des Moines, Iowa. However, you can pick up a new set of keys from any one of Hendrick Automotive Group’s 93 dealerships nationwide. Customers can also shop from the convenience of their home selecting the category, make, model and vehicle packages that are important to them from the nearly 30,000 new, high-quality pre-owned and certified cars, trucks and SUVs available at HENDRICKCARS.COM.

HENDRICK AUTOMOTIVE GROUP IS HIRING: Join the more than 10,000 people across the United States who work for Hendrick Automotive Group. The company is hiring technicians and other positions at its dealerships throughout the country. Positions are open for all skill levels and offer tuition and training reimbursement. Individuals who are interested can apply at HENDRICKCARS.COM.

9 CHASE ELLIOTT

Age: 28 (Nov. 28, 1995)

Hometown: Dawsonville, Georgia

Resides: Dawsonville, Georgia

Crew Chief: Alan Gustafson

Standings: 2nd

No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

SUMMING UP SONOMA: In Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series event at Sonoma Raceway, Chase Elliott and the No. 9 team started fourth after leading the Hendrick Motorsports four-car contingent in qualifying. The Dawsonville, Georgia, native finished fourth in stage one and followed it up with a 31st-place result in stage two after short pitting as part of the team’s strategy. In the final stage, Elliott took over the lead on lap 81 during the pit cycle prior to visiting pit road on lap 84 for four tires and fuel. Rejoining the race in the 12th position, he advanced to fourth before the checkered flag waved. The finish marked his fourth consecutive top-eight effort at the Napa Valley, California, road course.

GOING STRONG: Elliott, driver of the No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, is having one of the best seasons of his young Cup career. Following his fourth-place Sonoma finish, he jumped to second in the standings and is now just 14 points behind Hendrick Motorsports teammate Kyle Larson. His average result of 9.5 leads the series in 2024 and is the best of his career through 16 races. Elliott, who has completed more laps than any other competitor (4,452 of 4,453), is the only driver to finish every event inside the top 20 with one win (Texas Motor Speedway), six top-five finishes and eight top-10s on the year. A result of fifth or better Sunday would make him the fifth-youngest driver to reach 100 Cup Series top-fives at the age of 28 years, 6 months and 19 days.

IOWA EXPERIENCE: Elliott will be one of the drivers in the field with previous experience at Iowa Speedway, which will host its inaugural Cup Series race Sunday night. The 2020 Cup Series champion has made four NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at the 0.875-mile oval, finishing all of them inside the top 10. His best effort was a runner-up finish in the spring of 2015 when he led 114 of 259 laps. At Iowa, he has also made two NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series starts with a best finish of fifth in 2013 and earned an ARCA Series East/West win in 2012.

SHORT TRACK PERFORMANCE: Sunday’s race in the Hawkeye State will mark Elliott’s 49th short track start in the Cup Series. In his previous 48 races, he garnered one win (Martinsville Speedway in November 2020), two pole awards, 16 top-five finishes, 26 top-10s and 1,648 laps led. The 28-year-old driver finished inside the top 10 in five of his last seven short track appearances. In three points-paying starts this season on tracks measuring less than 1 mile in length, he placed eighth at Bristol Motor Speedway, fifth at Richmond Raceway and third at Martinsville. On short tracks in 2024, Elliott is one of only two drivers to finish inside the top 10 in all three short track races and is tied for the fourth-most points scored (114).

TALKIN’ NEXT GEN: Since the introduction of the Next Gen car in 2022, Elliott has earned six victories, which is tied for fifth on the Cup Series wins list. In that span, he holds the best average finish (12.1). On short tracks in the Next Gen era, Elliott has the third-best average finish (8.67).

GREAT GUSTAFSON: Now in his 20th season as a Cup Series crew chief, Alan Gustafson will call his 111th short track race on Sunday. In his previous starts on tracks measuring less than 1 mile in length, Gustafson has four victories. The veteran shot caller won at Bristol Motor Speedway in 2007 with Kyle Busch and three times at Martinsville: twice with NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon (2013 and 2015) and once with Elliott (2020). Last weekend at Sonoma, Gustafson earned his 200th top-five finish in the Cup Series after Elliott took the checkered flag in the fourth position.

FOUR TIRES FAST: Through 16 Cup Series races in 2024, the No. 9 pit crew ranks first in average four-tire pit stop time (10.618 seconds). In April at Texas, the five-person team knocked out the fastest four-tire stop of the season with a time of 9.076 seconds. The 2021 Mechanix Wear Most Valuable Pit Crew award-winning group is comprised of Chad Avrit (rear-tire changer), Jared Erspamer (tire carrier), John Gianninoto (fueler), Nick O’Dell (front-tire changer) and T.J. Semke (jackman).

BACK IN BLUE: This weekend marks the return of NAPA Auto Parts’ blue-based livery, which was last on the track for the NASCAR All-Star Race at North Wilkesboro Speedway in May when Elliott earned an eighth-place result. While this weekend marks the Cup Series’ first visit to Iowa Speedway, NAPA was Elliott’s primary sponsor for all four of his Xfinity Series starts at the track. Get a look at all the angles of the No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 here.

24 WILLIAM BYRON

Age: 26 (Nov. 29, 1997)

Hometown: Charlotte, North Carolina

Resides: Charlotte, North Carolina

Crew Chief: Rudy Fugle

Standings: 6th

No. 24 Liberty University Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

IOWA ELITE: While Sunday will be the first time the NASCAR Cup Series will race at Iowa Speedway, William Byron has had prior success at the short track. His first start at the Newton, Iowa, facility came in the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series in 2016 when Byron qualified fifth, led 107 laps and captured the checkered flag. After moving up to the NASCAR Xfinity Series in 2017, he picked up where he left off at Iowa, qualifying sixth, leading 78 laps and once again taking home the win. He followed it up with a ninth-place finish in the fall Xfinity race.

FUGLE FILES: While some will visit Iowa Speedway for the first time this weekend, Rudy Fugle has an extensive history at the 0.875-mile track. The No. 24 team crew chief has eight total NASCAR national series starts with eight top-10 finishes (one in the Xfinity Series and seven in the Truck Series). In fact, in his seven Truck Series appearances, Fugle’s drivers have collected two pole awards, two wins, five top-five finishes and seven top-10s while leading 380 laps and completing 100% of laps attempted (1,412).

24 IN ‘24: Byron’s 2024 Cup Series campaign started off hot with three wins (currently tied for the most), including the season-opening DAYTONA 500. The Charlotte, North Carolina, native has five top-five finishes (sixth in the series) and is tied for the second-most top-10s (nine). After 16 races, he sits sixth in the 2024 standings and holds 16 playoff points.

NEXT GEN DUO: Since the Next Gen Cup Series car was introduced in 2022, Byron and Fugle have a series-leading 11 wins. The duo is ahead of teammates Larson (10 wins) and crew chief Cliff Daniels (nine wins). Byron also has the second-best average finish (13.24) in the Next Gen car behind teammate Chase Elliott as well as two wins on short tracks in this car style (tied for the second).

PIT ROAD PROWESS: After 16 races in 2024, the No. 24 pit crew continues its success from last year, ranking third in fastest average four-tire pit stop (10.799 seconds). The No. 24 pit crew consists of Spencer Bishop (jackman), Jeff Cordero (front-tire changer), Orane Ossowski (rear-tire changer), Ryan Patton (tire carrier) and Landon Walker (fueler).

LIBERTY U IS BACK: Byron will feature Liberty University on his No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for this weekend’s race at Iowa Speedway. Featuring a white base with navy flames and red accents, the Liberty University No. 24 will surely stand out on track. Liberty University has a long history with Byron, starting in 2014 in the late model ranks. It has been Training Champions for Christ since its founding in 1971. Located in the mountains of Central Virginia, Liberty is a liberal arts institution with 17 colleges and schools that offer more than 600 degree programs, from the certificate to the doctoral level, on campus and online. Working on an undergraduate degree in strategic communication, Byron is in his junior year at Liberty University through its online program. For a better look at Byron’s Liberty University paint scheme, click here.

48 ALEX BOWMAN

Age: 31 (April 25, 1993)

Hometown: Tucson, Arizona

Resides: Concord, North Carolina

Crew Chief: Blake Harris

Standings: 11th

No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

I-O-WIN: Alex Bowman, driver of the No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, goes into Sunday’s inaugural NASCAR Cup Series race at Iowa Speedway with winning experience. In 2012, he dominated the ARCA Series field at the short track, leading 93 of 202 laps en route to victory. In the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Bowman has posted top-10 finishes in two of his three starts in the Hawkeye State.

SHORT-TRACK SUCCESS: Bowman has enjoyed success on Cup Series short tracks with wins at Richmond Raceway in April 2021 and Martinsville Speedway in October 2021. The two victories place him in a three-way tie for the seventh-most amongst active drivers, alongside teammate William Byron. In 2024, Bowman has earned the seventh-most points on short tracks (95) in the Cup Series.

FAST IN 2024: Going into the season’s 17th race, Bowman ranks 11th in the standings, 116 points behind the leader. So far in 2024, he has secured four top-five finishes, tied with 2021 for his most through 16 starts. The Tucson, Arizona, native has also earned an impressive nine top-10 finishes, placing him a three-way tie for second-most. The Ally Racing team has finished in the top 10 in eight of the last 12 Cup Series events.

SONOMA SUMMARY: On Sunday, the Cup Series competed at Sonoma Raceway where Bowman drove a Pride-themed No. 48 Ally Chevrolet for a fourth consecutive year. The team was fourth in practice and qualified eighth overall. In the first stage, Bowman withstood three cautions and gained three positions on his starting spot, earning valuable stage points in the process. During stage two, he raced in the top 10 until he pitted for four tires and fuel with three laps to go in the second segment, dropping to 33rd. In the final stage, Bowman raced forward in the field and finished 15th at the checkered flag.

REVVED UP ON RACE DAY: On Sunday, fans can #Rally48 with Bowman in person at Iowa Speedway. The driver of the No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 will make an appearance at 3:05 p.m. local time at the track’s Chevrolet Stage located in the fan zone.

PAWS-N-CLAWS IOWA: 2024 marks the fourth consecutive year Bowman and Ally are supporting Best Friends Animal Society and its vast network of partners. Every race weekend, the pair donates a total of $4,800 to help homeless pets. This weekend, the charitable donation will go to Paws-N-Claws Iowa. If you’re in the Newton, Iowa, area for the race, stop by and check out the shelter, which is located less than a 10-minute drive from the track.

CONLEY’S HOME TRACK: The Ally Racing pit crew ranks 10th on pit road for the best average four-tire stop in 2024 (11.050 seconds). The five-man unit is composed of jackman Allen Holman, tire carrier Brandon Grier, front-tire changer Donnie Tasser, rear-tire changer Andrew Bridgeforth and gasman Jacob Conley. Conley is from Omaha, Neb., and considers Kansas Speedway and Iowa Speedway his home tracks. The 34-year-old played football at Doane College in Nebraska before joining the No. 48 team. He has worked at Hendrick Motorsports for 12 years and been a member of the No. 48 team for eight seasons. Outside of racing, Conley enjoys golfing, cooking and spending time with his wife, Claire, and their three children and two rescue dogs.

HENDRICK
MOTORSPORTS /

2024All-TimeIowa
Races161,361
Wins7*308*
Poles4*250*
Top 522*1,254*
Top 1034*2,146*
Laps Led1,05380,810*
Stage Wins9107

BIG DADDY: Sunday’s inaugural race at Iowa Speedway falls on Father’s Day, which has traditionally been a good omen for Hendrick Motorsports. The team has won five of the last nine NASCAR Cup Series events that fell on the holiday: Dale Earnhardt Jr. in 2008 and 2012; Jimmie Johnson in 2010 and 2014; and most recently Kyle Larson in 2021.

KNACK FOR NEW TRACKS: Hendrick Motorsports has won four of the last 10 points-paying races held at new tracks on the Cup Series schedule. Chase Elliott went to victory lane in 2020 at the Daytona Road Course and in 2021 at Circuit of The Americas and Road America (which previously held its most recent Cup race in 1956). Also in 2021, Larson posted a win at the inaugural Cup event at Nashville Superspeedway.

THE LONG AND SHORT: Hendrick Motorsports’ record on short tracks dates back to its first win at the half-mile Martinsville Speedway in 1984. Today, the organization has 58 Cup Series victories on short tracks, which is the most of any active team.

CELEBRATING 40: In 2024, Hendrick Motorsports is celebrating its 40th anniversary. The team holds the all-time NASCAR Cup Series records in every major statistical category, including championships (14), wins (308), pole positions (250) and laps led (80,810). This season, it leads all Cup organizations with seven points-paying victories through 16 races.

QUOTABLE /

Kyle Larson, driver of the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on racing on the partially repaved surface at Iowa: “We got to test there a few weeks ago, and I think the track will change a ton because it was very slick. The entry zone into turn one is real bumpy because that is the old pavement. The groove in the corner (on the new pavement) wasn’t that wide because we only had three cars running during the test. With the practice day and all the cars on the track plus the other series racing, hopefully it will widen out significantly prior to our race on Sunday.”

Cliff Daniels, crew chief of the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on the recent test and partial repave at Iowa Speedway: “I have raced at Iowa (Speedway) previously and we did the test there a few weeks ago. The track had just been repaved in patches – or in sections. The test taught us a few things, but the track was dirty and the new pavement hadn’t really come in yet, even by the end of the test. We’re still going to have a bit of the unknown when we hit the track on Friday.”

Chase Elliott, driver of the No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on returning to Iowa after racing there in the NASCAR Xfinity Series: “It’s been a while, but I look forward to going back. I do think it is a good track and at least when I was running there, it was very wide. You had a lot of options. The track had a lot of character with a lot of big bumps and different things. It’s a good facility. It’s weird, they kind of tried to replicate Richmond (Raceway) and it’s nothing like Richmond. So I find that kind of interesting about Iowa (Speedway). I look forward to going back and I know the fans up there were always super enthusiastic about NASCAR being there, even in the truck and Xfinity events. I’d have to imagine that a Cup race will be accepted well.”

Alan Gustafson, crew chief of the No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on heading to Iowa Speedway for the first time: “This weekend will be interesting for sure. I can’t remember the last time I’ve gone to a track to race for the first time without having been there for a test or anything beforehand. So it’ll be cool to sort of experience driving into the infield and actually seeing the garage and pit road for the first time. And I’m looking forward to the race. Chase has some experience at this track, so I think that will be good as we get on track for practice on Friday. I’m just looking forward to getting there and seeing where we stack up.”

William Byron, driver of the No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on how he thinks the track will race with the repave: “Iowa (Speedway) is going to be a challenge. It’s a partial repave in the corners. Turn one may be the trickiest as you will enter on old pavement and then you will run into the new pavement through the corner. Turns three and four are repaved a little bit more all the way through. The times I ran (previously) at Iowa, the groove eventually moved up towards the top, but that lane wasn’t touched in the repave. That probably won’t be the preferred lane now. You’ll be able to run high but only high enough in the new pavement.”

Rudy Fugle, crew chief of the No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on the challenges of racing at Iowa Speedway: “Racing from trucks to Cup cars at a track is a difference for sure, especially with the aero package and the soft tire. You want to have so much rear grip and security that you end up making the car tight in the center. It’s just a weird balance to find in the Cup cars. I think Iowa (Speedway) will be a lot like Gateway (WWT Raceway) and a lot like Richmond (Raceway). Starting up front will be key because it will be hard to pass a ton of cars in one run. There’s going to be some surprises, too. The straightaways are really rough with a lot of bumps since only the corners were touched on the repave. The track has a lot of character and I’m looking forward to it. I’ve had a decent amount of success there and so has William (Byron). We’re looking forward to that challenge.”

Alex Bowman, driver of the No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on his goals while racing at Iowa Speedway: “I’m excited about the Cup Series making its debut this weekend at Iowa (Speedway). I’ve had the opportunity to compete in ARCA and the Xfinity Series there and performed pretty well. This Sunday will be a new experience, though, in the Cup Series and with the Next Gen car. It’s a sold-out race so hopefully we can put on a good show and find our way to victory lane, or at least secure our team’s 10th top-10 (finish) this season.”

Blake Harris, crew chief of the No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on competing at Iowa Speedway for the first time Sunday: “I’ve actually never been to Iowa (Speedway). I know Alex (Bowman) has been there a few times with the (NASCAR) Xfinity Series and has an ARCA win there, too. I look forward to making the trip and tackling it with Alex and our team. I think it should be interesting with the partial repave and short amount of practice time. It should be a good challenge, though, and I look forward to figuring it out.”

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

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Best New Zealand Online Casinos

RacingJunk.com and Leaf Racewear Safety Equipment Giveaway

Rocketplay Casino

Winspirit Australia

10 deposit casinos

Best Betting Sites in Canada

Latest articles