In 23 previous Nationwide Series appearances at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Richard Childress Racing has two wins at the 1.5-mile track, with Jeff Burton notching a victory in 2007 and Kevin Harvick bringing the organization to the Winner’s Circle in 2004.
To the Point … RCR’s two full-time Nationwide Series entries rank second (Sadler) and third (Dillon) in the Nationwide Series driver championship point standings heading into this weekend’s Nationwide Series season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The No. 2 team sits third in the owner point standings while the No. 3 team ranks fourth. The No. 33 team sits fifth in the owner championship point standings.
Live on ESPN2 … Flag-to-flag coverage of the NASCAR 300 is scheduled to be televised on ESPN2 beginning at 4 p.m. Eastern Time on Saturday, Nov. 17, and broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
Elliott Sadler #2 OneMain Financial Chevrolet
This Week’s OneMain Financial Chevrolet at Homestead-Miami Speedway … Elliott Sadler and the No. 2 OneMain Financial team will unload Chassis No. 117 from Richard Childress Racing’s NASCAR Nationwide Series stable this weekend. This Chevrolet has been utilized in four previous races this season, with Sadler racing it to a 15th-place finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in July after he was black-flagged as the leader, a fifth-place finish at Kentucky Speedway in September, and a pole award and third-place finish at Charlotte Motor Speedway in October. The Emporia, Va. native most recently drove this chassis at Texas Motor Speedway in November, earning an 11th-place finish.
Welcome To Miami … Sadler has six Nationwide Series starts at Homestead-Miami Speedway with one top-five and two top-10 finishes, including a best finish of fifth in 1996. Sadler also has 12 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at the 1.5-mile track, earning one top-10 finish, and two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts with a best finish of seventh in 2011.
Last Time By … In the final Nationwide Series event of the 2011 season, Sadler brought home a sixth-place finish at Homestead-Miami Speedway after starting from the outside pole position.
Just The Stats … According to NASCAR’s 2012 Loop Data Season-to-Date statistics, Sadler leads the Nationwide Series in Average Mid-Race Position (6.7), Average Running Position (7.2), Percentage of Quality Passes (74.1), Laps in the Top 15 (5,521) and Percentage of laps in the Top 15 (94.6). After 32 events in the Nationwide Series season, Sadler has earned four wins, four pole awards, 15 top-five and 23 top-10 finishes with 362 laps led.
To the Point … Sadler sits in the second position in the Nationwide Series driver championship point standings, 20 points behind the leader with one race remaining.
Race Rewind: Phoenix International Raceway … Sadler and the No. 2 OneMain Financial team finished 22nd after an incident on the last scheduled lap of the event caused significant damage on the Chevrolet.
What are your thoughts on Homestead-Miami Speedway? “It’s hard to believe that it is the last race of the season already. This OneMain Financial team has been great to work with. I love the determination and the heart each member of the team has, and although we head to Homestead with a deficit, we are not out of this championship. We will fight until the end. We have to finish off what we started, and we are as prepared as we need to be to go out there and make it happen.”
Austin Dillon #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet
This Week’s Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet at Homestead-Miami Speedway … Austin Dillon will pilot Chassis No. 102 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Nationwide Series stable. This is the same Chevrolet Dillon drove to Victory Lane at both NASCAR Nationwide Series races at Kentucky Speedway this year, starting from the pole position in both events. He also raced this Chevrolet to a sixth-place finish at Chicagoland Speedway in July, a sixth-place finish at Dover International Speedway in June, a fifth-place finish at Darlington Raceway in May, a fifth-place finish at Texas Motor Speedway in April and a seventh-place finish at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March.
Dillon at Homestead-Miami Speedway … Dillon will make his first NASCAR Nationwide Series start at Homestead-Miami Speedway this weekend. In two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at the track, Dillon finished 10th en route to clinching the 2011 Camping World Truck Series championship one year ago. In 2010 he earned the pole award at Homestead-Miami Speedway and led 11 laps but finished 31st after involvement in an on-track incident in the closing laps of the race.
The Season So Far … According to NASCAR’s Season-to-Date Loop Data Statistics, Dillon has completed 96.56 percent of Laps on the Lead Lap, ranking him second among all competitors. The Nationwide Series rookie has completed 91.5 percent of his Laps in the Top 15, ranking him second and has an Average Running Position of 8.406 in the season’s 32 contested Nationwide Series races, ranking him second. He is ranked third in the Fastest Laps Run category with 434 laps so far this season, maintains a Driver Rating of 105.3, ranking him third, is ranked third in the Closers category, advancing 25 positions this season in the final 10 percent of the race, has the fourth-fastest Speed in Traffic, is fourth-Fastest on Restarts and has 420 Laps Led this season, ranking him fifth. He ranks fifth in Quality Passes with 1102 and is the sixth-Fastest Driver Late in a Run. He has the sixth-fastest Green Flag Speed and is the seventh-fastest Driver Early in a Run.
Get to the Points … Dillon ranks third in the 2012 Nationwide Series driver championship point standings, trailing current point leader Ricky Stenhouse Jr. by 25 points. The Welcome, N.C., driver currently leads the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings over Cole Whitt.
Phoenix International Raceway Recap … Dillon secured his 26th top-10 finish after 32 NASCAR Nationwide Series races this season, surviving numerous cautions and a green-white-checker finish at Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday. Dillon started Richard Childress Racing’s No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet from the third position and remained a top five contender throughout a majority of the event, ultimately securing a sixth-place finish.
What are your thoughts heading into the last NASCAR Nationwide Series race of the season? “At the beginning of the season I said I wanted to go into Homestead-Miami Speedway with a shot to win the championship and that is what we were able to accomplish. We are just going into the race with the same attitude we have had all year. To try as hard as we can and to do what we can to try and win a championship. I’m going into this race excited and confident for next year. We have learned so much and to know that we are coming back and have the support of AdvoCare I think next year will be very good for the No. 3 team.”
Joey Coulter #21 Darrell Gwynn Foundation Chevrolet
This Week’s Darrell Gwynn Foundation Chevrolet at Homestead-Miami Speedway … Joey Coulter will pilot Chassis No. 110 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Nationwide Series stable in this weekend’s NASCAR 300.This chassis was built new for competition in 2012 and has been utilized twice this season. Coulter drove this Chevrolet a seventh-place finish at Charlotte Motor Speedway, and RCR teammate Elliott Sadler drove to a seventh-place finish in July at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Milestone Marker … The 21-year-old RCR driver will make his first Nationwide Series start at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Coulter made his Nationwide Series debut earlier this season at Charlotte Motor Speedway and tested a Nationwide Series car at Nashville Superspeedway.
Sunshine State Stats … Although Coulter has yet to make any competitive laps during a Nationwide Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, he has one previous start at the Homestead, Fla.-based facility in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, earning a fifth-place finish after starting from the 10th position and completing 100 percent of the contested laps.
A Team Effort … Coulter’s 2012 Camping World Truck Series No. 22 team will serve as his pit crew this weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway for Coulter’s second-career Nationwide Series start. His veteran crew chief Harold Holly brings his vast knowledge of NASCAR racing with him as he served as a crew chief in all of NASCAR’s top touring division working with drivers Jeff Green, Bobby Hamilton Jr and Alan Kulwicki, among others. In Holly’s Nationwide Series career, he has earned championship, 13 wins, 11 pole awards, 56 top-five and 72 top-10 finishes.
Double Duty … Prior to competing in the NASCAR 300, Coulter will pilot the No. 22 Rip It Energy Fuel Chevrolet in the Camping World Truck Series. The 134-lap event will be televised live on SPEED beginning at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio beginning at 7:45 p.m. ET.
Race Rewind: Nationwide Series Debut … Coulter overcame adversity to drive the No. 21 Sherwin Williams Chevrolet to a 10th-place finish in his NASCAR Nationwide Series debut at Charlotte Motor Speedway after starting from the 21st position.
You raced in the NASCAR Nationwide Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway in May. What did you learn in that race that will help you this weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway? “I learned a lot about how you have to race these cars in traffic. They drive differently than a truck does in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. We earned a top-10 finish in our first Nationwide Series event, and I think we can get another top 10 if not, top-five finish this weekend.”
Brendan Gaughan #33 South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet
This Week’s South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet at Homestead-Miami Speedway … Brendan Gaughan will pilot Chassis No. 107 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Nationwide Series stable in the NASCAR 300 this weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. This RCR Chevrolet has been utilized by the No. 33 team five times thus far this season by Paul Menard and Kevin Harvick. Menard drove this machine to a second-place finish at Texas Motor Speedway in April, eighth-place results at Michigan International Speedway in June and Indianapolis Motor Speedway in July, and earned a top-five finish at Chicagoland Speedway in September. Harvick piloted the car to a fourth-place result at Charlotte Motor Speedway in May after starting from the seventh spot.
Closing out the Season … Gaughan returns to the driver seat of the No. 33 South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet for the Nationwide Series season finale event this weekend at the Homestead, Fla.-based facility. Since 2009, the 37-year-old driver has collected one top-10 finish (eighth in 2010), completed 100 percent (400 of 400) of the laps contested and holds an average starting position of 10.5 coupled with an average finishing position of 9.5.
In the Loop … Since the inception of NASCAR’s Loop Data Statistics in 2006, Gaughan has competed in two events at the 1.5-mile oval track collecting one top-10 finish. The Las Vegas native has spent 252 Laps in the Top 15, has made 152 Green Flag Passes and is credited with running two of the Fastest Laps. Gaughan has completed 96 passes while running within the top 15 under green-flag conditions, placing him third in the Quality Passes Loop Data category. Gaughan also maintains an average increase of three positions during the final 10 percent of the laps run ranking him fifth in the Closers category.
To the Points … The No. 33 RCR Chevrolet team sits fifth in the Nationwide Series owner’s championship point standings, 104 points behind the leader. The No. 33 team has earned two wins (Harvick at Richmond International Raceway in September and Texas Motor Speedway in November), 15 top-five and 22 top-10 finishes between six different drivers (Ty Dillon, Gaughan, Harvick, Menard, Max Papis and Tony Stewart) over the course of the 33-event season.
In the Rearview Mirror: Phoenix International Raceway … Gaughan and the No. 33 South Point Hotel & Casino team were relegated to a 26th-place finish in the Nationwide Series race at Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday after being involved in an on-track incident during the final scheduled lap of the Great Clips 200.
What are your thoughts about racing in the final NASCAR Nationwide Series at Homestead-Miami Speedway? “This is a redemption weekend for me. We didn’t get the result that myself and the team were looking for last weekend at Phoenix (International Raceway) after getting caught up in an incident during the final lap, so my goal is to make up for that and bring home a top-five or top-10 finish. I can’t thank everyone at Richard Childress Racing and South Point Hotel & Casino for giving me the chance to run a handful of races this season. The No. 33 team has worked so hard this season and I’d like to help them end it on a positive note.”