Sunday marks the last chance for fans to win a 2012 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport for one year from Hendrickcars.com, Hendrick Automotive Group’s online retail store. To enter, fans must visit Hendrickcars.com and accurately guess the average lap speed Kasey Kahne will post on Lap 163 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Sunday, Sept. 2. The contest ends when the green flag is waved to start the race. The winner will be announced on Hendrickcars.com on Sept. 5. For official rules, please visit Hendrickcars.com.
POINTS AFTER BRISTOL: With two victories and an 11th-place ranking, Kahne leads the drivers vying for the two wild card spots in the upcoming Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. But the driver of the No. 5 Hendrickcars.com Chevrolet trails 10th-place Tony Stewart by just 16 points and potentially could snag that spot this weekend at Atlanta. That would give Kahne the chance to advance to the postseason as a seeded Chase qualifier, and his two wins would give him six bonus points.
KAHNE AT ATLANTA: In 15 NASCAR Sprint Cup starts at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Kahne has two wins, six top-five finishes and eight top-10s. The driver of the No. 5 Hendrickcars.com Chevrolet also has two pole positions at the 1.54-mile oval and started from the top spot one year ago. Atlanta ranks as Kahne’s second-best track in career wins, while his average starting spot of 9.1 at Atlanta ranks him third among active drivers.
CHASSIS CHOICE: For the Sept. 2 night race, crew chief Kenny Francis has selected Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 5-739. Kahne raced this car to a 12th-place finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in July.
1.5-MILE SUCCESS: Kahne has finished eighth or better in four of the five points races at 1.5-mile speedways, notably recording a win at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway and a runner-up finish in his most recent start at Kentucky Speedway. He also earned the pole at Las Vegas Motor Speedway – the first at the 1.5-mile track for Hendrick Motorsports.
LOOP DATA: Kahne has run 230 fastest laps during the last 13 races at Atlanta, tying him with Tony Stewart for fifth best according to NASCAR loop data. His 324 laps led during the same time rank him fifth among the competition.
DRIVER RATING: Kahne ranks 10th in the driver rating category at Atlanta Motor Speedway with a score of 91.0, according to NASCAR loop data. The driver rating is a formula that combines wins, top-15 finishes, average running position while on the lead lap, average speed under green, fastest lap, most laps led and lead-lap finishes. The maximum a driver can earn in each race is 150 points. The driver rating number is used pre-race as a prediction tool and post-race as a performance evaluator.
2012 SEASON-TO-DATE STATS: So far in 2012, Kahne has run 436 fastest laps, ranking him second behind teammate Jimmie Johnson. Kahne ranks third behind Johnson and Jeff Gordon for speed under the green flag and speed late in a run.
HENDRICK AT ATLANTA: Hendrick Motorsports has 11 wins at Atlanta Motor Speedway, which ranks the organization second all-time to the Wood Brothers (12 victories). Gordon, the defending race winner at the 1.54-mile oval, is eyeing his sixth career win at the track, which would improve his position in the wild card hunt. His Hendrick Motorsports teammates Dale Earnhardt Jr., Johnson and Kahne also have reached Victory Lane at Atlanta within the last eight years (15 events).
KASEY KAHNE, DRIVER, NO. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM CHEVROLET (ON ATLANTA MOTOR SPEEDWAY.): “Atlanta is my favorite track on the circuit. It’s wide and fast, so we can race a lot of different lines. We have a good history here, and I expect a good weekend with a Hendrick Motorsports car under me.”