Toyota NASCAR Notes & Quotes - Week of October 20, 2008

October 22, 2008

Upcoming Races:
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series @ Atlanta Motor Speedway
·Friday, October 24, Qualifying @ 7:00 PM (ET) – ESPN2, PRN and Sirius Satellite Radio (Ch. 128)
·Sunday, October 26, Race start @ 2:00 PM (ET) – ABC, PRN and Sirius Satellite Radio (Ch. 128)
·Race 33 of 36

NASCAR Nationwide Series @ Memphis Motorsports Park
·Saturday, October 25, Qualifying @ 9:35 AM (CT) – ESPN Classic, MRN and Sirius Satellite Radio (Ch. 128)
·Saturday, October 25, Race start @ 2:30 PM (CT) – SPEED/ESPN Classic, MRN and Sirius Satellite Radio (Ch. 128)
·Race 32 of 35

NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series @ Atlanta Motor Speedway
·Saturday, October 25, Qualifying @ 9:10 AM (ET) – SPEED, MRN and Sirius Satellite Radio (Ch. 128)
·Saturday, October 25, Race start @ 1:30 PM (ET) – SPEED, MRN and Sirius Satellite Radio (Ch. 128)
·Race 22 of 25

Toyota 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Statistics
Races Starts (Drivers) Wins Top-5s Top-10s Poles Times Led Laps Led
32 313 (19) 10 41 65 4 208 3,390

HISTORY AT ATLANTA: The Toyota Camry will make its fourth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) start at Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend. In March, Kyle Busch scored Toyota's inaugural NSCS victory at the 1.5-mile Georgia oval, leading 173 of 325 laps en route to the checkered flag. Busch was followed to the finish line by Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) teammate Tony Stewart, for a one-two Toyota sweep. Camry drivers Brian Vickers (ninth) and Denny Hamlin (15th) also posted top-15 results in the spring race earlier this year.

RACE REWIND: Hamlin was the highest-finishing Toyota driver in the most recent NSCS race, recording a fifth-place result in the No. 11 FedEx Camry at Virginia's Martinsville Speedway. Toyota drivers Vickers (11th) and Michael Waltrip (20th) also finished inside the top-20. Camry drivers Dave Blaney (22nd), David Reutimann (24th), Stewart (26th), Ken Schrader (28th), Busch (29th), Scott Speed (30th) and Mike Bliss (39th) were also in the field.

HAMLIN HAS HOPE: Through the first five races of the NASCAR 'Chase for the Sprint Cup,' Hamlin has suffered a series of bad luck, including a blown right-front tire while leading at Talladega -- which ultimately took the Chesterfield, Va.-native out of championship contention. However, a fifth-place run at Martinsville has Hamlin excited for the final four races of the season. "It definitely feels good," said Hamlin, following the Martinsville race. "It's a relief for us. I'm excited to make it to the second half of this 'Chase'. We've had a rough start and a realistic goal for us is to try to get to the top six or seven in points."

INAUGURAL WIN: Toyota earned its first NSCS victory at Atlanta in March when Busch crossed the finish line first in his JGR No. 18 Camry. Toyota's inaugural NSCS win came in the 40th race for the Camry since joining the series at the start of the 2007 season. Busch also won the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) race that weekend at Atlanta, becoming the first driver to sweep both the NSCS and NCTS races on the same weekend. It also marked Busch's first NSCS victory at JGR since joining the team at the start of the season.

'ROWDY' REFLECTS: "It was pretty cool to be able to bring home Toyota's first win, not only for myself, but for the whole JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing) camp," says Busch. "Of course, for the 18 team too -- to bring the history back to that car from Atlanta with all the success that they've had there -- that was pretty cool at that track. It means the world to be able to win any time, but to get Toyota their first win was pretty cool."

GEORGIA ON HIS MIND: This weekend, Stewart will make his 20th NSCS start at Atlanta, a track where the Columbus, Ind.-native has enjoyed considerable success. The two-time Cup champion has two wins (spring 2002 and fall 2006), one pole (fall 2002) and 12 top-10 finishes in 19 previous starts at Atlanta. "I'm excited about it," says Stewart, of heading to Atlanta. "Atlanta is a huge market for us with Home Depot and Coca-Cola being down there. It's a driver's race track. It's about guys that can get up on the wheel and get comfortable up by the wall. So, we're all looking forward to going back."

CAMRY 'CHASE' RACERS: Stewart is the highest-ranking Toyota driver in the 'Chase,' currently sitting eighth in the 12-car field, 338 points behind current leader Jimmie Johnson. Hamlin (11th) and Busch (12th) are also in the top-12 in points after six of 10 'Chase' races, and 32 of 36 races complete in the 2008 NSCS season.

JOEY JUMPS IN AT JGR: Joey Logano, who has been tapped to take over driving duties of the No. 20 Home Depot Camry in 2009, will make his NSCS debut with JGR this weekend at Atlanta. The 18-year-old has competed in 15 NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) races with JGR and has made a pair of NSCS starts with Hall of Fame Racing, but will debut in the No. 02 Home Depot Camry on Sunday. "I ran (in Atlanta) a lot when I was little in the Bandoleros and Legends," says Logano. "There is a lot of history and a lot of memories there. It's kind of like a second home track for me."

300 STARTS FOR BLANEY: Dave Blaney will make his 300th career Sprint Cup Series start Sunday at Atlanta, driving the Bill Davis Racing No. 22 Caterpillar Camry. The Hartford, Ohio-native will also celebrate his 46th birthday at the track on Friday, Oct. 24. Blaney made his NSCS debut at North Carolina Speedway (Rockingham, N.C.) in 1992. In total, he has logged more than 110,000 miles in NSCS competition.

TEN FOR TOYOTA: Toyota Camry drivers have earned 10 NSCS wins through the first 32 races of 2008. Stewart earned Toyota's most recent victory at Alabama's Talladega Superspeedway (Oct. 5), recording his 33rd career NSCS win, his first Cup win at the Talladega track and his initial Cup victory driving a Camry. Busch has won eight races in his JGR No. 18 Camry -- most recently recording a win at the Watkins Glen road course (Aug. 10). Busch also earned victories at Atlanta (March 9), Talladega (April 27), Darlington (May 10), Dover (June 1), Infineon (June 22), Daytona (July 5) and Chicagoland (July 12). Hamlin visited victory lane at Martinsville (March 30) to record Toyota's second NSCS win.

Toyota 2008 NASCAR Nationwide Series Statistics
Races Starts (Drivers) Wins Top-5s Top-10s Poles Times Led Laps Led
31 185 (16) 19 50 89 11 135 3,086

MEMPHIS MEMORIES: The Toyota Camry will make its second NNS start at Memphis Motorsports Park Saturday. Reutimann gave Toyota its second NNS win in 2007 at the track, leading 194 of 253 laps on the three-quarter-mile Tennessee oval en route to the checkered flag. The Zephyrhills, Fla.-native survived a record 25 caution flags for 117 laps to capture his first-career NNS win. Fellow Camry driver Jason Leffler (fifth) also posted a top-five finish for Toyota at Memphis last fall.

DAVID DISCUSSES '07 WIN: "I don't know if there has ever been that many yellows in a race, there were a lot of them," says Reutimann, reflecting on last year's victory. "Memphis is a pretty challenging racetrack and sometimes it is challenging to pass. It doesn't take much to turn a guy around. It was one of those deals where it is good for Michael Waltrip Racing because we were able to give them their first win on the race track in a few years. I was so proud of my guys."

THE 'KING' RETURNS TO MEMPHIS: When Reutimann won at Memphis last October, the No. 99 Aaron's Dream Machine Camry he drove was carrying a very special paint scheme. The designer, Wiley King, was the winner of the inaugural 'Design a Dream' coloring contest -- where children at the St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital could color their own paint scheme, with the winners seeing their sketch on actual race cars. After drawing the winning design last year, King and his family will be on-hand at Memphis again this weekend. The No. 99 Toyota Camry is one of many NNS cars participating in the program again this year.

ON THE 'MARC' IN MEMPHIS: Joe Gibbs Racing development driver Marc Davis will make his Nationwide Series debut Saturday at Memphis. The 18-year-old Silver Spring, Maryland-product made his NASCAR debut at St. Louis in August, finishing 16th in the NCTS race for Randy Moss Motorsports.

'MARC' MY WORDS: "It's been a long time coming," says Davis. "I'm really excited and looking forward to it. "I've seen (Memphis) on video games and I've watched tapes of a lot of Nationwide and Craftsman Truck Series races there. I've never competed there, but I've tried to learn everything I can about the track. When you break it down, the No. 18 car has 10 wins this year. When you get in that car, you expect to run well, and I expect to run well myself."

SHARING IS WISE: With Reutimann having NSCS obligations in Atlanta on Friday and Saturday morning, Josh Wise will practice and qualify the No. 99 Camry in Memphis. The Riverside, Calif.-native has made three NNS starts for Toyota in 2008, with a best finish of 14th at Michigan in August.

BUESCHER BACK IN: James Buescher returns to the seat of the Braun Racing No. 32 Camry this weekend for his final start with the team in 2008. The 18-year-old from Plano, Texas has made five NNS starts with Braun in 2008, with a best finish of eighth at Gateway International Raceway outside St. Louis in July.

CAMRY COUNT: Toyota drivers have earned 19 NNS wins this season. Busch has nine victories, including three consecutive at Texas (April 5), Phoenix (April 11) and Mexico City (April 20), along with victories at Charlotte (May 24 and Oct. 10), Chicagoland (July 11), Indianapolis (July 26), California (Aug. 30) and Dover (Sept. 20). Stewart has five NNS wins at Daytona (Feb. 16), California (Feb. 25), Talladega (April 26), Darlington (May 9) and New Hampshire (June 28). Hamlin has recorded four victories at Richmond (May 2), Dover (May 31), Daytona (July 4) and Kansas (Sept. 27). Logano scored his first career NNS win at Kentucky (June 14).

POINTS PACE: Four Camry drivers currently rank in the top-10 in the NNS point standings heading into Memphis. Busch (sixth) is the highest-ranking Toyota driver in points after 31 of 35 races. Reutimann (seventh), Mike Wallace (eighth) and Leffler (ninth) are chasing points-leader Clint Bowyer with four races remaining on the 2008 schedule.

Toyota 2008 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Statistics
Races Starts (Drivers) Wins Top-5s Top-10s Poles Times Led Laps Led
21 218 (28) 12 48 93 10 98 1,660

MORE ATLANTA HISTORY: The Toyota Tundra will make its ninth NCTS start at Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend. In eight previous starts at the track, Tundra drivers have combined for three victories -- including the spring races in 2006 (Todd Bodine), 2007 (Mike Skinner) and 2008 (Busch). Earlier this year, Busch led 39 of 130 laps for the win at Atlanta, driving the No. 51 Tundra for Billy Ballew Motorsports.

RACE RECALL: Johnny Benson, driver of the No. 23 Bill Davis Racing Tundra won the NCTS race at Martinsville Saturday after passing race-leader and championship foe Ron Hornaday, Jr. with 46 laps to go. He held off all challengers to make his first victory lane visit at Martinsville's 'Paper Clip.' Busch (fourth), Bodine (fifth) and Speed (seventh) also scored top-10 finishes for Toyota.

HITTING A HALF-CENTURY: Benson's victory at Martinsville was the 50th win for Toyota in NCTS competition since joining the series in 2004 (121 races). Benson and Bodine have the most NCTS wins driving for Toyota, with 14 victories apiece. Skinner (nine), Busch (three), Jack Sprague (three) and Travis Kvapil (two) also have multiple wins in a Tundra, while Reutimann, Speed, David Starr, Ted Musgrave and Brandon Whitt each have one victory for Toyota.

BUSCH BEST AT ATLANTA: For Busch, there is something about driving in the Craftsman Truck Series at Atlanta. The 23-year-old Las Vegas-native has a flawless record in the series at the track -- three starts and three wins. Busch will look to make it four-straight this weekend in his No. 51 Toyota Tundra, and will have his JGR teammate to help him accomplish that task. Hamlin will drive the No. 15 Billy Ballew Motorsports Tundra Saturday.

TUNDRA TOTAL: Tundra drivers have registered 12 NCTS wins through 21 races in 2008. Benson (Milwaukee, Kentucky, Indianapolis, Nashville and Martinsville), Busch (California, Atlanta and Bristol) and Bodine (Daytona and Talladega) each have multiple race wins this season, while Tundra racers Speed (Dover) and Skinner (Las Vegas) each have one NCTS victory this year.

FOLLOW THE LEADER: With his victory at Martinsville, Benson catapulted into the lead in the NCTS point standings, now leading Hornaday, Jr., by 65 points after 21 of 25 races. Tundra drivers Bodine (fourth), Skinner (fifth) and Terry Cook (10th) are also in the top-10 in points with four races remaining.

ON THE BRINK: Toyota can clinch its third-straight NCTS manufacturer's title this weekend at Atlanta if the highest-finishing Tundra beats the highest-finishing Chevrolet. After 21 of 25 races in 2008, Toyota currently holds an 18-point advantage in the manufacturer point standings over Chevrolet, 151 to 133. Ford (100 points) is third, followed by Dodge (78 points).

BACK STORY: Background information on the Toyota NASCAR program is available at www.toyota.com/pitpass and members of media can access Toyota images at www.toyotamotorsportsmedia.com.

2008 TOYOTA DRIVER/TEAM ROSTER

 

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 
Driver                        Car                                              Team 
Dave Blaney               No. 22 Caterpillar Toyota Camry              Bill Davis Racing 
Ken Schrader              No. 96 DLP HDTV Toyota Camry                 Hall of Fame Racing   
Joey Logano               No. 02 Home Depot Toyota Camry               Joe Gibbs Racing 
Denny Hamlin              No. 11 FedEx Toyota Camry                    Joe Gibbs Racing 
Kyle Busch                No. 18 M&M's Toyota Camry                    Joe Gibbs Racing   
Tony Stewart              No. 20 Home Depot Toyota Camry               Joe Gibbs Racing 
David Reutimann        	  No. 44 UPS Toyota Camry                      Michael Waltrip Racing 
Marcos Ambrose            No. 47 Little Debbie Toyota Camry            Michael Waltrip Racing 
Michael Waltrip           No. 55 NAPA Toyota Camry                     Michael Waltrip Racing 
Brian Vickers             No. 83 Red Bull Toyota Camry                 Red Bull Racing Team 
Scott Speed               No. 84 Red Bull Toyota Camry                 Red Bull Racing Team 
  
NASCAR Nationwide Series 
Driver                       Car                                              Team 
James Buescher            No. 32 Camping World Toyota Camry            Braun Racing 
Jason Leffler             No. 38 Great Clips Toyota Camry              Braun Racing 
Mike Wallace              No. 7 GEICO Toyota Camry                     Germain Racing 
Marc Davis                No. 18 DLP HDTV Toyota Camry                 Joe Gibbs Racing 
Joey Logano               No. 20 GameStop Toyota Camry                 Joe Gibbs Racing 
David Reutimann           No. 99 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota Camry    Michael Waltrip Racing 
  
NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series 
Driver                         Truck                                          Team 
Mike Skinner              No. 5 Toyota Tundra                            Bill Davis Racing 
Scott Speed               No. 22 Red Bull Toyota Tundra                  Bill Davis Racing 
Johnny Benson             No. 23 Toyota Certified Used Vehicles Tundra   Bill Davis Racing 
Denny Hamlin              No. 15 Hyprene Ergon Toyota Tundra             Billy Ballew Motorsports 
Kyle Busch                No. 51 Miccosukee Resorts Toyota Tundra        Billy Ballew Motorsports 
Chrissy Wallace           No. 9 Germain Toyota Tundra                    Germain Racing 
Todd Bodine               No. 30 Lumber Liquidators Toyota Tundra        Germain Racing 
Terry Cook                No. 59 Team ASE/Harris Trucking Toyota Tundra  HT Motorsports 
David Starr               No. 11 Zachry Toyota Tundra                    Red Horse Racing 
Jack Sprague              No. 60 Wyler.com Toyota Tundra                 Wyler Racing 
Brian Scott               No. 16 Albertsons Toyota Tundra                Xpress Motorsports 
  


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