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Snapshot: Michigan

August 17, 2014, Zack Albert, NASCAR.com

Catch up quickly before Sunday's Pure Michigan 400 (1 p.m. ET, ESPN)

MORE: Pure Michigan 400 lineup | Ryan Truex out of race
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What: 45th annual Pure Michigan 400.
Where: Michigan International Speedway, 2-mile oval in Brooklyn, Michigan.
When: Sunday, Aug. 17, 1 p.m. ET.
TV/Radio: ESPN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
Distance: 200 laps, 400 miles.
 
Pit road speed: 55 mph.
Caution car speed: 65 mph.
Fuel window: 40 laps.
 
On the front row | Full lineup
Jeff Gordon, Hendrick Motorsports No. 24 Chevrolet (206.558 mph).
Joey Logano, Team Penske No. 22 Ford (206.381 mph).

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Fastest in practice
First practice:
Joey Logano, Team Penske No. 22 Ford (204.545 mph).
Second practice: Kevin Harvick, Stewart-Haas Racing No. 4 Chevrolet (203.183 mph).
Final practice: Jeff Gordon, Hendrick Motorsports No. 24 Chevrolet (200.156 mph).
 
Driver rating
 (Best driver rating average at Michigan based on past 19 races):
Greg Biffle, 107.8.
Matt Kenseth, 104.5.
 
Last year's winner
Joey Logano, Team Penske No. 22 Ford.
 
They said it I: "We've talked about confidence in the past. You can't just have all this confidence and not have the car to go along with it. You've got to have the whole package. And right now, I feel like we're bringing the whole package." -- Four-time champion Jeff Gordon, a two-time winner this season
 
They said it II: "To be able to this year kind of look at it differently, have a different perspective, but to be able to say as a whole as a race team that we are winners in the Sprint Cup Series, which is hard to do, that has probably been the most enjoyable thing. Waking up each day knowing that I don't have to have you guys ask me when I'm going to win again, or 'are you going to be the next first-time winner.' I don't have to do that any more. I'm good with that now." -- AJ Allmendinger, who scored the first Sprint Cup victory of his career last weekend at Watkins Glen International
 
They said it III: "I think it is safe to say that is the fastest lap I have ever made in a race car. I am not sure but I think it is. You can't argue with the time sheet." -- Carl Edwards, after registering a lap at 204.111 mph in opening Sprint Cup practice. He qualified third at 206.115.
 
Longevity and success: Jeff Gordon leads active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers with 43 career starts and 18 top-five finishes at Michigan International Speedway. In the track's all-time record books, Bill Elliott (61 Michigan starts) and Cale Yarborough (21 top-fives at MIS) top those lists; both are NASCAR Hall of Fame inductees.
 
Girl power: Four women have competed in NASCAR's top division at Michigan -- Janet Guthrie (four starts), Danica Patrick (three), Robin McCall (two) and Shawna Robinson (one). Guthrie hold the distinction of having the best finish among the four -- 10th in August 1977. Patrick's best effort was 13th in her Michigan debut in 2013. McCall, who later married former driver and current TV commentator Wally Dallenbach Jr., competed in both Michigan races in 1982 for the only NASCAR starts of her career. Robinson's lone 2001 start at MIS was her first race in NASCAR's premier series.
 
History lesson: Michigan International Speedway opened in 1968 with a D-shaped layout designed by Charles Moneypenny, who also helped design Daytona International Speedway.  The facility first hosted NASCAR's top series the following year. Cale Yarborough won the track's inaugural stock-car event -- the 1969 Motor State 500 -- in the Wood Brothers' No. 21 Mercury after a fierce last-lap battle with LeeRoy Yarbrough. Since then, it's hosted 89 more races for the Cup series.
 
Former Michigan winners in the field: Greg Biffle (4); Kurt Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Carl Edwards, Jeff Gordon, Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth, Ryan Newman (2); Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Kasey Kahne, Joey Logano, Brian Vickers (1).

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