STATESVILLE, N.C. – You can’t blame David Ragan for looking forward to a trip to Michigan International Speedway. In 12 Sprint Cup Series starts at the two-mile oval, Ragan has only finished outside the top-25 twice. Those starts include one top-five, two top-10s and five top-15s.
The driver of the No. 34 Taco Bell Ford expects things to speed up during this weekend’s visit for the Quicken Loans 400. With the track repaved before the 2012 race dates, and the new Gen-6 car breaking qualifying records everywhere, Ragan can’t wait to get back to one of his best venues to see how fast the racing gets.
His best finish at the Brooklyn, Mich., track is a third-place result in 2008.
Comments from Taco Bell team driver David Ragan heading to Michigan: “Since they repaved Michigan, it’s really in a class of its own. Prior to the repave, you could transfer a few things from Auto Club Speedway or even Kansas prior to its repave. Michigan is super fast. Track records from a couple years ago in the Generation-5 car are long gone. I’m sure we’ll see some very fast speeds this weekend in this new Gen-6 car.
“The racetracks have done such an awesome job resurfacing these places. They’ve added some characteristics to the place and I think Goodyear can bring a little bit better tire year after year. I can’t wait to get to Michigan. They’ve had a winter on that surface there and we’re starting to get into summer, so it will be interesting to see how the surface has changed. It usually gets a little better for the second, third and fourth year after repaving.
“Every racetrack is a little different in how you can adjust to a new surface. It usually takes two to three years. Look at Darlington. The first couple years it was tough to get a hold of. But then the third and fourth year, it was really ideal. You look at Las Vegas or you look at Charlotte, or some of these other tracks that were repaved several years ago, they’re in their prime, in my opinion, right now and will only get better.
“Michigan is a track that’s very, very wide and it’s going to be very fast. You’ve got two races there very close together (June and August). So, it will be fun to get there, strap in and see how fast it’s going to be.”