News & Media


By the Numbers: Pole position could prove pivotal at Dover, Vegas

September 28, 2012, , NASCAR.com

For Starters

7 -- Seven of the 15 Truck Series races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway have been won from the pole, the most of any track.

1 -- Kasey Kahne is the only Chase driver entered in the Nationwide Series race at Dover International Speedway.

5 -- The points lead has changed hands at Dover in five of the eight seasons of the Chase: every year from 2004 through '07 and again last year. However, the driver leading the point standings following Dover has never gone on to win the Chase.

CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES

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Breakout Number

4 -- Four of the six Truck races on the current configuration at Las Vegas (20 degrees banking in the turns; 9 degrees on the straightaways) have been won from the pole, including the past two. The race was won from the pole three times in the first nine races on the old configuration (12 degrees banking in the turns; 8 degrees on the frontstretch and 3 degrees on the backstretch). The average starting position of Vegas winners on the current configuration is 1.5 (with a worst of third). In all, 11 of the 15 races have been won from the top three.

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Track Tidbits

2 -- 1988 Cup Series champion Bill Elliott made two career starts in the Truck Series, both at Vegas. He finished second in 1996, just one of three drivers who made their series debut at Vegas and posted a top-10: Michael Waltrip (fourth in that same race in '96) and Mike Stefanik (eighth in '98).

3 -- Johnny Sauter is one of three drivers who scored their first series win at Vegas, joining David Starr (2002) and Shane Hmiel ('04). In three starts at the track, Sauter has a victory (2009) and subsequent second- and fourth-place finishes. Starr's win -- which serves as the race record (135.394 mph) -- came on the heels of his first series pole. Hmiel started 21st, the only Vegas winner not to start in the top 10.

4 -- Matt Crafton has four consecutive top-five finishes at Las Vegas, the longest current streak. Crafton had but one top-10 in his first seven starts there, with six finishes of 21st or worse.

Recent Trends

2 -- Parker Kligerman finished second last week at Kentucky, his third runner-up in 2012 and fifth of his career; that's a record for most second-place finishes without a win. The record for most runner-up finishes before a driver's first victory is six, by Jason Leffler. Kligerman finished 10th last year at Vegas, his first start at the track.

4 -- James Buescher won his fourth 1.5-mile race of the season last week at Kentucky, tying Todd Bodine (2005) for most in a single season. Four of the final seven races are on 1.5-mile tracks including Vegas, where Buescher has made three starts with one top-10 (third place in 2010).

26 -- Timothy Peters is 26 points out in the championship race; he has finished 13th, 19th and 21st in the past three races, dropping from the points lead to third. Peters has two top-fives in the past three races at Vegas but also two finishes of 26th (2005, '10) in his four starts overall.

NATIONWIDE SERIES

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Breakout Number

1-2-3 -- Joey Logano (first), Ryan Truex (second) and Brian Scott (third) in the 2012 5-hour Energy 200 at Dover in June gave Joe Gibbs Racing the first 1-2-3 sweep in series history. JGR cars have led 1,361 of the 2,021 laps raced at Dover in the past 10 events (67 percent), and during that same span have either won (six) or been passed for the final lead change in nine of those races. Furthermore, JGR car has won the pole for six of the past seven races at Dover with time trials, with Kyle Busch winning twice.

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Track Tidbits

5 -- A driver has swept both races at Dover in a season five times including the past two years. June 2012 winner Joey Logano leads all drivers with six wins in 2012, the most he ever had in a season. In addition to his victory at Dover, he has two runner-up finishes among his seven starts there.

9 -- The driver leading the most laps at Dover has won nine of the past 11 races, including the past five.

33 -- The final green-flag stretch has been 33 laps or more in three of the past four races at Dover but seven laps or less in five of the last eight, including three of the track's four green-white-checkered finishes, most recently in May 2011.

Recent Trends

3 -- Kyle Busch has three wins at Dover, tied with Todd Bodine and Carl Edwards for the most, and leads all drivers with 853 laps led there. Busch has led the most laps in five of his past six starts at Dover; he won three of them and finished second in his most recent race there in May 2011, all with Joe Gibbs Racing. Kurt Busch finished fourth at Dover in June in Kyle Busch's Motorsports' No. 54 Toyota. Kyle Busch is trying to add to his streak of eight years with at least one win.

3 -- Darrell Wallace Jr. has finished in the top 10 in his first three Nationwide starts, all in 2012. Wallace, who owns a 2011 K&N Pro Series East win at Dover, from the pole, is entered in Joe Gibbs Racing's No. 20 Toyota, a car Ryan Truex drove to the pole and a runner-up finish in June.

6 -- Austin Dillon finished sixth in his first start at Dover in June, one of a series-high 21 top-10s for the Nationwide rookie. His 21 top-10s through 27 races are the most in series history by a rookie, topping the previous best of 18 set by Steve Park in 1997 and later by Kyle Busch in 2004. Dillon's 14 top-fives also are a rookie-high, surpassed the 12 set by Greg Biffle in 2001 and Busch in '04.

SPRINT CUP SERIES

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Breakout Number

9 -- In the past nine races at Dover, Jimmie Johnson leads all drivers in points earned and Matt Kenseth ranks second. Johnson has posted four of his seven wins during that span; he scored his seventh victory in the 2012 FedEx 400 in June, tying Bobby Allison and Richard Petty for the most. Johnson has won three Chase races at Dover. Kenseth has one win and top-fives in all but one of those races; he has more top-fives (13) and top-10s (18) at Dover than at any other track. Kenseth has been passed for the final lead change in three Chase races at Dover.

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Track Tidbits

1-2-3 -- Roush Fenway Racing has the only 1-2-3 sweep at Dover when Greg Biffle-Matt Kenseth-Carl Edwards finished in that order in the September 2008 race; all three drivers were in that season's Chase. That year's top-10 also included three Richard Childress Racing and two Hendrick Motorsports cars in the Chase.

3 -- Matt Kenseth has achieved three Cup firsts at Dover, two in the same race: first start and first top-10 (started 16th, finished sixth driving the No. 94 Ford for Bill Elliott in September 1998). He also scored his first career pole at Dover in June 2002; he finished 40th as a result of a crash.

13 -- There were 13 cars involved in a Lap 9 accident that brought out the red flag in the June race at Dover (watch). Tony Stewart was the only driver involved in the melee who made the Chase; he finished 25th. Stewart was running at the finish, but 17 other cars weren't, the most at Dover since 17 in June 2004 (a span of 16 races); all nine of the crash DNFs were a result of the early multi-car accident.

Recent Trends

4 -- Michael Waltrip Racing has won four of the past six poles at Dover, including two by Chase driver Martin Truex Jr. and earlier this year by Mark Martin. None of the drivers managed a top-10. The only other driver to win a pole during that span is Jimmie Johnson; he won two, and each time won the race, as well. Incidentally, Johnson has started first in three of the past six races at Dover; he was awarded the pole one other time when qualifying was rained out.

6 -- Six of Kurt Busch's eight top-10s at Dover have come in the fall race, including top-fives in the past three. His win last year at Dover was his last top-10 in Penske Racing's No. 22 Dodge. He only has two top-10s in 2012, with a best of third at Sonoma.

27 -- The final green-flag stretch has been at least 27 laps in six of the eight Chase races at Dover; there was at least one green stretch of 72 laps in all eight races.

©Racing Resources and Services -- Statistics ©Racing Recall®

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