Late Race Incident Halts Top-10 Finish for the Target Team at Martinsville Speedway

MINNEAPOLIS - November 1, 2011
Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Media Contact
Shayna Keller  No. 42 Target Chevrolet
Results (starting pos.) Martinsville Speedway
1.    (4)  Tony Stewart, No. 14 Chevrolet
22.  (20)  Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet
35.  (27)  Jamie McMurray, No. 1 McDonald’s Chevrolet
Late Race Incident Halts Top-10 Finish for the Target Team at Martinsville Speedway
Juan Pablo Montoya has his best average finishing position at the famed “paperclip” called Martinsville Speedway and the Target team was looking to continue that strong momentum. The No. 42 Chevrolet got minimal track time due to weather over the weekend, started in the 20th position, overcame two pit road penalties to run the majority of the race in the top-15. It wasn’t until the closing laps that the damage sustained throughout the race got the best of the Target Chevrolet and the team finished 22nd.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series held their last short track race of the 2011 season over the weekend at Martinsville Speedway. Weather again became a factor as all track activity was cancelled on Friday, qualifying order was determined by point standings and teams were given one practice session before the race on Sunday.
Starting from the 20th- position, Montoya immediately focused on the handling of the race car. Due to a lack of practice prior to the race, teams spent the early part of the Tums Fast Relief 500 working on the set-up of the race car. By lap 75, the Target Chevrolet was handling better and up in the top-five. Montoya spent the remaining laps trying to maintain track position and stay away from any on-track incidents. The team overcame two speeding penalties on pit road to get back in the top-15 with 100 laps to go. Unfortunately the beating and banging out on the track began to take a toll on the No. 42 and while running in the 14th position the Target Chevrolet sustained some front end damage. Repairs were made on pit road but on lap 482 out of 500 the hood flew up causing the team to come down pit road and cut it off. Montoya was able to bring home the No. 42 Target Chevrolet in the 22nd position when the craziness came to a close.
- Montoya has two poles, two top-five and eight top-10 finishes this season
- Montoya has the highest number of laps run this season out of any driver with 9696 including all 12 of the Chase contenders
- Montoya moved up three spots after his 22nd-place finish at Martinsville to 17th
- Montoya has no DNF’s in 2011
The 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series only has three races remaining this year. Teams will return to Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday, November 6 at 3:00 pm ET for the AAA Texas 500. The race will air live on ESPN and radio stations affiliated with PRN.
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