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RCR Race Preview: Iowa Speedway

NASCAR Cup Series Racing in The Hawkeye State… Iowa Speedway will host the NASCAR Cup Series for the first time in track history this weekend for the Iowa Corn 350 Powered by Ethanol. The 7/8-mile facility opened for business in 2006 and successfully hosted the NASCAR Xfinity Series and NASCAR Truck Series from 2009 through 2019. The ARCA Menards Series has competed at the track in all but one season since the facility opened in 2006. RCR’s full roster of drivers (Austin Dillon, Kyle Busch, Austin Hill and Jesse Love) have previously competed at Iowa Speedway.

RCR: A Winning Tradition at Iowa Speedway… Richard Childress Racing has two wins at Iowa Speedway. Elliott Sadler won the 2012 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Iowa Speedway from the pole position while Austin Dillon was victorious in the 2010 Truck Series race at Iowa – also winning from the pole.

Catch the Action… NBC Sports begins its portion of the 2024 NASCAR Cup and Xfinity Series this weekend at Iowa Speedway, highlighted by the Iowa Corn 350 Powered by Ethanol in primetime at 7 p.m. ET on USA Network. The race will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.

The HyVee Perks 250 at Iowa Speedway will be televised live on Saturday, June 15 beginning at 3:30 p.m. ET on USA Network. The race will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.

Austin Dillon and the No. 3 Get Bioethanol Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at Iowa Speedway… While this weekend marks the inaugural race for the NASCAR Cup Series at Iowa Speedway, Dillon has considerable experience at the track. In six NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at Iowa Speedway, Dillon earned three top-five and four top-10 finishes. He is a NASCAR Truck Series race winner at the track, claiming his career-first Truck Series victory in dominate fashion in 2010 during his rookie year of competition in the series, and has two top-10s in three Truck Series starts at the track. Dillon has one top-five finish in one ARCA Menards Series start at Iowa Speedway, and two top-10 finishes in two NASCAR Pro Series East starts at the track. He has earned poles in both NASCAR Xfinity Series and NASCAR Truck Series competition at Iowa Speedway.

Winning Memories… Dillon’s career-first NASCAR Truck Series win came at Iowa Speedway in 2010 driving the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing. He led 187 of 200 laps in the race.

Delivering Performance on the Track and For the Planet… Dillon will race the Get Bioethanol Chevy at Iowa Speedway, showcasing the performance benefits of racing with earth kind and engine-smart bioethanol blended fuel, Sunoco Green E15. Whether it’s delivering cleaner and cooler high-octane on the racetrack or a more affordable option for summer road trips, plant-based bioethanol makes a positive impact on our planet. NASCAR drivers have now officially raced 23 million NASCAR miles driven on Sunoco Green E15, a notable milestone for the environment as NASCAR’s partnership with Get Bioethanol has reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent across its three national touring series while also increasing horsepower on the track. Learn more about bioethanol at getbioethanol.com.

Meet Dillon… Dillon is scheduled to make an appearance at Casey’s General Store (4400 LA Speedway Drive, Newton, Iowa, 50208) on behalf of Get Bioethanol and Iowa Corn on Friday, June 14 at 12 p.m. local time. Stop by to meet the driver of the No. 3 Get Bioethanol Chevrolet in advance of the race weekend. Dillon is also scheduled to make a stop at the RCR Merchandise Hauler in the Iowa Speedway Fan Midway on Sunday at 1:20 p.m. local time.

AUSTIN DILLON QUOTE:

This weekend marks the first NASCAR Cup Series race at Iowa Speedway. What are your expectations?

“I love Iowa Speedway. It’s a place where I learned a lot about racing early in my career. I’ve been there multiple times in different series. Those Midwest fans really show up. It’s a kind of Field of Dreams mentality. You’re out in the middle of nowhere and everybody just shows up. It’s a cool track and had a lot of character the last time I was there. I’m interested to see what it’s like when we put the NASCAR Cup Series cars on it.”

Kyle Busch and the No. 8 zone Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at Iowa Speedway… Kyle Busch will make his first NASCAR Cup Series start at Iowa Speedway this weekend when NASCAR’s premier series makes its debut at the 7/8-mile track. Busch has competed in the NASCAR Xfinity Series and NASCAR Pro Series East divisions at the Newton, Iowa track. He scored a dominating Xfinity Series victory in 2010, leading 209 of 250 laps (83.60 percent) and finishing with an average running position of 1.212. In 2009, Busch won the Pro Series East race from the pole, leading 168 of 200 laps in a race that also featured Busch’s current RCR teammate Austin Dillon plus 16 competitors from the Pro Series West division.

Stat of the Week… Busch will be making his 114th career short track start in the NASCAR Cup Series this weekend. The Las Vegas native enters the race with 17 wins and 69 top-10s, scoring a top-10 finish in an impressive 61.06 percent of those starts.

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KYLE BUSCH QUOTES:

You have two NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at Iowa Speedway, scoring a dominating victory in 2010 and a second-place finish in 2009. Is there anything from that past experience that you can use in this weekend’s NASCAR Cup Series race?

“I have enjoyed my past races that I’ve run at Iowa Speedway. Running there in the NASCAR Xfinity Series and a NASCAR Pro Series East race there years ago was pretty fun. I think the track is going to be vastly different than I remember it with the old asphalt. The new asphalt in the various parts of the racetrack will make it way different.”

Is racing at Iowa Speedway similar to racing at Richmond Raceway?

“As similar as Iowa and Richmond are to each other in their size and how they look, the tracks are not even close to each other at all in how they race. I feel like the biggest challenges at Iowa with the Next Gen Cup car will be the aero deficiencies in traffic and how wide the new asphalt allows you to work your way outside of the wake of the other cars in front of you.”

Do you think adding another short track race to the NASCAR Cup Series schedule is a good thing?

“I have always been a supporter of short track racing and enjoy racing at the short tracks, but with this Next Gen Cup car, it is probably one of the biggest challenges we’ve ever had of putting on good racing at short tracks.”

Jesse Love and the No. 2 Whelen Chevrolet Camaro SS at Iowa Speedway… Jesse Love will make his NASCAR Xfinity Series debut at Iowa Speedway on Saturday. The current Sunoco Rookie of the Year points leader has made four ARCA Menards Series starts at the 7/8-mile facility, posting one pole, one top-five and two top-10 finishes. Last season, Love started from the fifth position and crossed the finish line in third place.

About Whelen Engineering… Whelen Engineering is a family-owned company with a pioneering spirit and a passion to protect the lives of those who protect and serve others. The company mission is to provide industry-defining safety solutions around the world, while creating a community of problem-solvers who are inspired to push boundaries and continue our legacy of delivering ground-breaking innovation. As a global leader in the emergency warning industry, Whelen has been trusted to perform since 1952, when George Whelen III invented the first rotating aviation beacon. Whelen now encompasses two state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in Connecticut and New Hampshire with over 750,000 square feet of engineering and manufacturing space and the largest design staff in the industry. Every part of every Whelen product is proudly designed and manufactured in America. We embrace quality as our foundation, we celebrate innovative engineering in every product we produce.

Meet Love… On Friday, June 14 at 2 p.m. local time, Love and his Richard Childress Racing teammate Austin Hill are scheduled to sign autographs at the RCR Merchandise Trailer in the Midway at Iowa Speedway. On Saturday, June 15 at 9:45 a.m. local time, the Menlo Park, California native will answer fan questions at the Team Chevy Display in the Midway at Iowa Speedway. Meet the rookie sensation before he takes the green flag and purchase your No. 2 gear.

JESSE LOVE QUOTE:

The Xfinity Series has not been at Iowa Speedway since 2019, but you have competed there for the last four years. What do you expect from this weekend’s race?

“The first time I raced at Iowa Speedway, I wasn’t great. The second time I went back, I was dominant – sat on the pole, led the most laps, and almost won the race, but our alternator died with four laps left. Iowa Speedway is a place that I understand well, but I do think the repave is going to change a lot of the characteristics. The repave has left a lot of question marks, so we will have to see how the track handles during practice. After talking to some other drivers who tested there, it’s interesting. You would think with the repave, the bottom would be tremendously faster, but it sounds like there is less grip. The progressive banking has increased, so I feel like a lot of things will be different this time around.”

Austin Hill and the No. 21 Bennett Transportation and Logistics Chevrolet Camaro SS at Iowa Speedway… Austin Hill will make his NASCAR Xfinity Series debut at Iowa Speedway on Saturday, as the series returns to the Newton, Iowa facility for the first time since 2019. However, Hill has plenty of experience at the 7/8-mile facility, having competed in two NASCAR Truck Series (best finish of 12th) and six NASCAR Pro Series East (best finish of seventh) events.

About Bennett Family of Companies… McDonough-Ga. based Bennett Family of Companies is a woman-owned, Women’s Enterprise Business Council (WBENC) certified, diversified transportation and logistics company. Through its 14 affiliated operating companies, the Bennett Family of Companies delivers integrated transportation and supply chain management solutions worldwide. Bennett has 4,625 drivers/owner-operators, over 1,000 employees and 600 agents located across the United States. For more information, visit www.bennettig.com.

Meet Hill… On Friday, June 14 at 2 p.m. local time, Hill and his Richard Childress Racing teammate Jesse Love are scheduled to sign autographs at the RCR Merchandise Trailer in the Midway at Iowa Speedway. On Saturday, June 15 at 9:30 a.m. local time, the 30-year-old driver will answer fan questions at the Team Chevy Display in the Midway at Iowa Speedway. Stop by to purchase your new No. 21 gear and meet Hill before the green flag waves.

AUSTIN HILL QUOTE:

You haven’t raced at Iowa Speedway in a handful of years. What are your thoughts going into this weekend?

“I look forward to going back to Iowa Speedway for the first time in a few years. I’ve raced there a handful of times throughout my career, whether in the Truck Series or Pro Series East. The results haven’t always been the greatest, but I do like that the track is different than others that we go to. I’m interested to see what the repave has done to the surface and how it reacts to balance adjustments. I hope we will be able to keep the same racing, but time will tell. The practice session on Friday will be very important for our No. 21 team specifically, to get our balance right and the car dialed in for the race.”

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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