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NASCAR New Hampshire Preview

by Dave Grayson
Wednesday, June 24, 2009

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NASCAR's Sprint Cup teams will be taking on the extremely challenging "Magic Mile", aka the New Hampshire Motor Speedway, for Sunday's Lenox Industrial Tools 301. This particular speedway is virtually flat as a pancake and that's what makes it so challenging especially coming through, and coming off of, the corners. It's also likely that the newly initiated double file restart policy could be most interesting during Sunday's race when the pack roars into turn one.

All of this potential excitement can be seen Sunday at 12:30 pm eastern time on the TNT Network. The rebroadcast will be on Wednesday, 12:00 pm eastern, on Speed.

THE RACE BREAKDOWN
The Lenox Industrial Tools 301 has 46 entries vying for the 43 starting berths. 11 of the entries are on the "go or go home" list meaning they are outside of NASCAR's top 35 in owner's points and will have to make the race bases on their qualifying speed.

The one driver that stands out among these 11 teams is Brad Keselowski will be driving the #09 Miccosukee Resort and Gaming Chevrolet for team owner James Finch. This is the same combination that stunned everyone by winning the most recent Sprint Cup event at Talladega. This is also another opportunity for Keselowski, a full Nationwide Series driver, to get some seat time in a Cup car in order to prepare for the likelihood that he will be moving up to NASCAR's premiere series in 2010.

Kurt Busch
Kurt Busch won the race in 2008 after starting from the 26th position. Greg Biffle won the New Hampshire event last September from the ninth starting spot.

New Hampshire has turned up seven different winners in the last seven races. Since 1993 18 different winners has visited the speedway's victory lane.

Jeff Burton leads the New Hampshire winner's list with four. The Richard Childress Racing driver has some very impressive stats at this track. In 1999 he won the race from the 38th starting position after having to take a provisional just to make the race to begin with. He took the lead for good with only two laps left in the event. One year later Burton won this race after leading all 300 laps.

When it comes down to organization wins the Fords from Roush Fenway Racing leads everyone with seven. However the manufacturer's win stats tells a completely different story. Chevrolet leads that category with 12 New Hampshire victories.

Ryan "The Rocket Man" Newman holds the track's qualifying record, 133.357 MPH, set back in September of 2003.
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THE TRACK BREAKDOWN

The New Hampshire Motor Speedway is an oval measuring 1.08 miles in length.

The race is 301 laps for a total of 318.485 miles.

The basic flat oval only has 12 degrees of banking in the turns and 2 degrees of banking in the straightaways.

The groundbreaking for the track was held in August of 1989. The track officially opened in June of 1990 featuring what is now known as the NASCAR Nationwide Series. The track presently seats 95,491.

Sunday will mark the 28th NASCAR Sprint Cup event at the speedway. The first one was held in July of 1993 and was won by Rusty Wallace.
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THE VEGAS BREAKDOWN.

This week's wager report is again provided by "Las Vegas Insider Dot Com" who are saying Jimmie Johnson is going to win the New Hampshire race and have placed him at 5 to 1 odds. Johnson swept both events in New Hampshire in 2003.

Previous New Hampshire winner Jeff Gordon comes in at 6 to 1. This is a very strong bet. Gordon holds the track record for top five finishes, at 12, and top tens with 15. He is joined at 6 to 1 odds by Kyle Busch the defending race winner who also swept both events in 2004.

Tony Stewart, the red hot series points leader, comes in at 8 to 1 for Sunday's race and is joined in that category by Mark Martin and Denny Hamlin.

Carl Edwards and Greg Biffle are ranked at 10 to 1 despite the fact that Roush Fenway Racing cars have more wins than any other team at this track.

Coming in at 12 to 1 this week are Matt Kenseth, last week's winner Kasey Kahne and Ryan Newman who holds the record for the most poles at New Hampshire with four. Previous race winners Jeff Burton and Kurt Busch are also included in this category.

For you members of the Junior Nation, "Vegas Insider" has rated Dale Earnhardt Jr at 15 to 1 odds this week. That's actually encouraging not to mention the best Las Vegas ranking for the #88 in quite a long time.

Now it's time once again for the weekly disclaimer. NASCAR officials wants you to know that these numbers should be considered for entertainment purposes only and they do not condone the placing of wagers on their races.

However many of you big time gamblers are telling me that they're making a contribution to the slumping economy of Las Vegas, Nevada who are not entitled to the same federal bail out money that the car manufacturers are receiving.

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