Former Texas Winner Newman Back to Enjoying Intermediate Tracks
Posted: 05 Apr 2011 09:11 PM PDT
FORT WORTH, Texas – Coming to a 1.5-mile track wasn’t always a pleasant thought for Ryan Newman. But based on his recent success at the intermediate tracks, Newman along with the entire No. 39 U.S. Army team are feeling confident about Saturday night’s Samsung Mobile 500 Sprint Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway.
The reason for the change of attitude about the intermediate tracks is the fifth-place finishes Newman has claimed this season at Las Vegas (1.5-mile) and Fontana, Calif. (2-mile).
“We’re off to a strong start and if we’re going to continue to have success we need to do well at the intermediate tracks like Texas,” explained Newman. “In the past, the mile-and-a-half and two-mile tracks gave us problems, but so far this season we have had good results at those venues.”
Newman, who will drive the No. 39 U.S. Army Reserve Chevrolet in Texas for Stewart-Haas Racing, is in sixth place in the driver standings with three top fives and four top 10s after the first six races of the season.
“Texas will be another good test for our U.S. Army Reserve Chevrolet,” said Newman. “I’ve had a mixture of results there including a win (2003), but it’s going to be more interesting this weekend with it being a night race. The balance transition at night races is key and with this being the first night race at Texas, that’s the big unanswered question.”
Newman is looking to snap a five-race, non top-10 finish at the 1.5-mile Texas track. His last top-10 there was in April of 2008.
“Based on what we’ve accomplished during the offseason and at the beginning of this year, we should be in the top 10 or better at Texas, barring any unforeseen incidents,” noted Newman. “I think we put ourselves in a better position team-wise and communication-wise to be more successful this year.
“After two years of working together, we’ve learned what we needed to work on and I think we did a good job in the off-season of doing that. This is not any different than the teamwork and communications that are shared by our Army Strong Soldiers. I feel good about how our U.S. Army team has been working through problems.”
Newman’s record at Texas Motor Speedway includes 15 starts, 1 win, three top fives, three top 10s and two poles. At the two Texas races last year he finished 11th (April) and 20th (November).