Brad Keselowski Racing NCWTS Preview: Martinsville Speedway
Keys to the Race:
- Qualify well and maintain track position all day because stage points are critical
- Big question for crew chiefs: tires or track position?
- Stages mean more restarts and more chances for a driver to get shuffled back in the pack – must navigate them successfully for a good finish
- Manage the sense of urgency because the fall race at Martinsville is 50 laps shorter than the spring event
- Racing at Martinsville is mentally challenging for a driver
- Driver must be the aggressor as the race nears the finish
- Running well at Martinsville requires a little bit of everything: handling, horsepower and brakes
- Maintaining pit road speed is difficult due to the tight pit road
No. 19 Fitzgerald Glider Kits Ford F-150
- Driver of the Fitzgerald Glider Kits Ford F-150 begins the Round of 6 as the sixth seed in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs. He enters the Texas Roadhouse 200 at Martinsville Speedway just seven points behind fourth-place John Hunter Nemechek and the cutoff spot in the Championship 4
- Will be making his 26th NCWTS start and third at Martinsville
- Fifth-place finish at Talladega Superspeedway was his 10th top 10 in the last 11 races and sixth top five of the season
- The No. 19 team advanced to the Round of 6 as the sixth seed in the NCWTS Owner Playoffs, eight points behind the fourth-place ThorSport Racing (No. 88) and a spot in the Championship 4
- Has three consecutive top-10 finishes in four short track races this season
- Best finish in six short track starts: eighth place at Iowa Speedway (2017)
- Made NCWTS debut at Martinsville in October of 2015 and has completed 449 of 450 possible laps (99.77 percent) in two previous starts at the 0.526-mile speedway
- DID YOU KNOW? Cindric has completed 99.83 percent of total possible laps (1201 of 1203) in six previous short track races
Austin Cindric: “Martinsville is all about putting our Fitzgerald Glider Kits Ford F-150 in the right position to score playoff points and stay ahead of the mess. I’ve got enough experience at Martinsville now to know what we need to run well. I think we’re coming in with the right package this time. I’m excited to be able to rebound from how we ran there in the spring. It’s very similar to what I ran in 2015, when we ran really well. Where we really struggled back in March was through the center of the corner. You can’t be too tight, but you’ve also got to make sure that you have the right traction off. I need to be consistent in my brake zones, not rushing the corners too much. The first two stages are going to be super-short, 50 laps each, so qualifying is going to be really important because those are easy stage points if you can qualify well. We’re starting out with a small deficit to the Playoff cutoff line, so getting stage points right off the get-go is important.”
No. 29 Cooper Standard Ford F-150
- Chase Briscoe enters his second-career race at Martinsville Speedway. Briscoe started eighth and finished 11th in his track debut in the spring.
- Following the departure of crew chief Mike Hillman Jr., Briscoe will be paired with Buddy Sisco for the remainder of the 2017 season. Sisco served as crew chief for four races earlier this season, earning one pole and two runner-up finishes.
- DID YOU KNOW? Joey Logano gave Brad Keselowski Racing its first Martinsville win in 2015, behind the wheel of the No. 29 Cooper Standard Ford F-150. Logano started from the pole and led six times for 150 of 258 laps and scored his first win in his seventh NCWTS start. His average running position was 1.640 and his driver rating was 144.6 of a possible 150. His pole-winning lap of 19.504 seconds (97.088 mph) is the NCWTS track record at Martinsville.
- Brad Keselowski Racing has a total of four short-track wins since the team was formed in 2008.
- Rock The Vote: Voting for the 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Most Popular Driver is open. You can vote once per day, every day through the Ford 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. To vote, visit www.TeamBKR.com/Vote
Chase Briscoe: “I’m looking forward to getting to Martinsville Speedway again. When we raced there earlier in the year, I had so little experience in the truck, and now that I have a lot more seat time, I feel like we will be a lot better. Not being in the playoffs anymore certainly changes how we can run these races and should open up a lot more opportunities for our team. It’s obviously disappointing, but I think we can still get a couple wins before the season comes to a close.”