News & Media

By the Numbers: Up and downs for Hendrick at Martinsville

March 30, 2012, ,

For Starters

7 -- The average starting position for the 126 race winners in Cup and 26 race winners in Truck is seventh in both series. Eighteen Cup races have been won by the pole winner, most recently by Denny Hamlin in October 2010, and 19 from the first starting position. Four Truck races have been won by the pole winner, most recently by Johnny Sauter in April 2011, and five from the first starting position.


Breakout Number

7 -- Martinsville has produced seven first-time winners, more than any other track: Bobby Hamilton (April 2000), Scott Riggs (April 2001), Jamie McMurray (October 2004), Bobby Labonte (April 2005), Ricky Craven (October 2005), Timothy Peters (October 2009) and Denny Hamlin (October 2011). Only Riggs, Craven and Peters were full time at the time of their victories.


Track Tidbits

2 -- The driver leading with 10 laps to go has gone on to win all but two races at Martinsville: the 1995 inaugural (Joe Ruttman passed Geoffrey Bodine with two laps to go) and last year's spring race (Johnny Sauter passed Kyle Busch with two laps to go). Rutmann led only those two laps, the fewest of any Martinsville winner.

7 -- There have been seven green-white-checkered finishes at Martinsville; six have come in the spring race but the most recent in the fall (2010). Two of the three races to end under caution also took place in the spring, in back-to-back years (2008 and '09).

16 -- The winner at Martinsville has led only once 16 times, including six of the past nine races.

Recent Trends

0 -- Todd Bodine has 21 career Truck Series wins, but none on a short track. He is the only driver with 10 or more wins that has not won on a short track. In 47 short-track starts, he has finished second six times, including twice at Martinsville (most recently in October 2009).

4 -- Ron Hornaday has finished in the top four in the past six races at Martinsville and has led in the past eight races there. He has made 19 starts, more than any other track, and his 10 top-fives and 13 top-10s are tied with Phoenix for personal bests. However, only one of Hornaday's series-best 22 short-track wins has come at Martinsville, in October 2010.

6 -- Six drivers scored top-10s finishes in both races last year at Martinsville: Austin Dillon, Brendan Gaughan, Kevin Harvick, Ron Hornaday, Timothy Peters and Johnny Sauter. Hornaday and Sauter (the only 2011 winner of the six) each posted top-fives in both races.


Breakout Number

4 -- A Hendrick driver has been passed for the final lead change in four of the past five races at Martinsville. Last year, Dale Earnhardt Jr. was passed with four laps to go in April; Jimmie Johnson was passed with three left in October. In March 2010, Jeff Gordon was passed with two to go. In October 2009, Denny Hamlin passed Johnson with 139 laps remaining and led the rest of the way.


Track Tidbits

2 -- Points leader Greg Biffle has only two top-10 finishes in 18 starts at Martinsville, with a best of seventh in October 2007. His average finish of 22.44 is his lowest among all oval tracks and overall ranks second-worst to Watkins Glen (25.78). Biffle has 16 Cup wins but none on a short-track. He has only four top-10s in the past 24 races on short tracks, all at Bristol.

3 -- The leader of the most laps has failed to win the past three races at Martinsville, and seven of the past 10. Kyle Busch led the most laps in both 2011 races (151 and 126); the two winners led a total of 20 laps (six by Kevin Harvick in April and 14 by Tony Stewart in October).

9.5 -- Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s average finish at Martinsville since joining Hendrick Motorsports is 9.5, his second-best track based behind Las Vegas (9.2). He has finished second six times since his last win (134 races ago) and two of those runner-ups came at Martinsville. Earnhardt is one of three drivers to finish in the top 10 in both races at Martinsville last season (Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick). Furthermore, crew chief Steve Letarte's first of 10 Cup wins came at Martinsville in October 2005 with Gordon.

Recent Trends

0 -- Kyle Busch has eight short-track wins, including seven in the past 19 races, but has never won at Martinsville. He has seven top-10 finishes in 14 Martinsville starts but finished 18th or worse in the other seven races. Busch has finished outside the top 20 six times in the past 25 short-track races; five of the six have been in the past seven at Martinsville. Busch's second-place finish last week at was his first top-five finish of 2012 and only his second finish better than 17th in his past nine starts.

23 -- Roush Fenway Racing has just 23 top-10 finishes out of 87 starts at Martinsville since its last win, in October 2002. Six of those top-10s came from drivers who are no longer with Roush. Its current stable of drivers is winless at Martinsville. Roush has 69 wins, encompassing 18 different tracks, since its last win at Martinsville.

37 -- Jeff Gordon has the most short-track wins among active drivers with 15 but none in the past 37 short-track races, dating to October 2005 at Martinsville. Martinsville is Jeff Gordon's best track: He has seven wins (tied with Darlington for most among all tracks), 25 top-fives, 31 top-10s, 3,094 laps led and an average finish of 6.89, all tops among the 25 tracks at which he has competed. Gordon has finished fifth or better in 13 of the past 14 races at Martinsville. Gordon is the only driver to lead in all five races this season; however, he is 25th in points, the lowest he has ever been at this point in the season.

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