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Nov 01
2010

MEARS LEADS IN ‘DEGA; NETS TOP 25

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , NASCAR Sprint Cup Series , Germain.com , Germain Racing , GEICOgarage , GEICO Racing , GEICO , Casey Mears , Bootie Barker

Talladega, AL (October 31, 2010) – Talladega is known to have one of the wildest races (and infields) on the NASCAR circuit.  When Halloween and NASCAR clash at the historic racetrack it only lends credence on both counts.  Casey Mears and the GEICO team were hoping not to fall victim to ‘The Big One’ when they arrived on-site this weekend.

 

Friday afternoon saw the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series hitting the track for two practice sessions.  Although Mears appeared to be fast enough to make Sunday’s field of 43, his times were unspectacular.  A seasoned veteran, Mears showed little concern as he left the garage area after the final practice on Friday.

 

When qualifying got underway, Mears appeared relaxed as he buckled into the #13 GEICO Camry.  He calmly left pit road, but soon after he stormed around the 2.66-mile tri-oval in just 52.151 seconds, netting GEICO their best ever NASCAR Sprint Cup qualifying effort.  Mears would start Sunday’s Amp Energy Juice 500 from the inside of Row 5, in the 9th position. 

 

Bright sunny skies and temperatures in the mid-70’s welcomed the Sprint Cup Series to the track on race day.  Mears took the green flag in the 9th position, but by Lap 5 he was running 5th.  As Talladega would have it, the #13 GEICO Camry would fall in and out of the draft and vacillated anywhere between 5th and 24th positions through the opening forty laps of the race.

 

Crew chief Bootie Barker ordered the #13 GEICO Camry down pit road on Lap 40 for a scheduled green flag pit stop.  The Germain Racing pit crew outfitted Mears with two right side tires and fuel before returning him to the racing surface in the 24th position.

 

Just two laps later, Mears reported to Barker: “It won’t run by itself, I need someone around me.”  On Lap 47, he found that someone and he quickly jumped the GEICO Camry to 19th.  Lap 50 saw Mears in the middle of a four-car draft that included Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch.  The 4-car draft quickly rejoined the main pack of cars and Mears returned to business as usual, picking up positions until he reached 8th on Lap 60. 

 

A single lap later, on Lap 61, Mears was running third and pulled out and became the leader of the race, until Jeff Burton left him hung out to dry with no one to push him.

 

The event’s first caution flag of the day was displayed on Lap 70, allowing Mears to bring the #13 GEICO Camry to the attention of the Germain Racing pit crew.  They provided Mears with four fresh Goodyear tires, a tank of Sunoco racing fuel and much needed rear adjustments.  After restarting 20th on Lap 74, Mears and the #13 GEICO Camry continued their solid Top 20 run. 

 

With 62 laps to go, Casey asked Barker how many laps were left, obviously starting to mentally decide when to make a move. 

 

Mears and the #13 GEICO Camry were running solidly in the Top 10 when Marcos Ambrose got turned, initiating a multi-car spin.  Mears somehow managed to narrowly avoid peril and keep the GEICO Camry clean despite cars spinning around him.  Barker told Mears to come down pit road for a quick fuel stop under the caution.  Mears arrived in the GEICO Racing pit box and the Germain Racing pit crew quickly filled his car with fuel and returned him to the racetrack two spots to the good.

 

As the laps began to wind down, the GEICO Camry was sitting in the 9th position with just 43 laps remaining in the race.  With 20 to go, Mears’ voice sounded more like he was sitting on his couch at home, rather than in a racecar traveling at 200 miles per hour.  He was calm, cool and collected when he said to Barker, “I’m waiting to see who is going to make a move.”

 

In Hollywood drama type fashion, the caution flag was displayed for debris with just seven laps remaining in the race.  Mears took the opportunity to come down pit road and take a quick splash of fuel before the dash for cash began. 

 

Restarting 26th with five laps to go, Mears moved the #13 GEICO into the 21st position on the subsequent lap.  He dropped to 32nd on Lap 187, but the final lap found him charging hard to the front, reaching as high as 24th before the event’s final caution flag of the day waved just after the white flag was shown to the field.  Consequently, the field was frozen, prohibiting Mears from continuing his assault on the field.  Rather than the Top 10 he was sure to have, Mears and the GEICO Racing team were instead stuck with a 24th place finish, just ahead of Kyle Busch and Kasey Kahne, who also fell victim to the last lap caution.

 

While a Top 25 is generally considered a success in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racing, today it was only frustrating.  Mears spent his entire afternoon running in or around the Top 15 and the #13 GEICO Camry was poised for a Top 10 finish, if not for the last lap crash that saw A.J. Allmendinger upside down in Turn 1.

 

When spotter Jason Jarrett informed Mears of the last lap caution flag, Mears yelled what everyone was else was thinking: “You’ve got to be kidding me!”

 

“It’s a frustrating outcome because we ran so well all day; the #13 GEICO Camry was great in the draft and we were definitely headed for a Top 10,” said a frustrated Mears.  “We were solid today and it was great to be able to put the GEICO Camry up front and even lead the race at one point.  This is Talladega, what else can you say.  We’ll get back after it in Texas next week.”

 

Next week, Casey Mears and the GEICO team head to the Lone Star State.

 

Mears and the #13 GEICO Toyota Camry will hit the 1.5-mile quad-oval at Texas Motor Speedway for the opening practice session at 1:00 PM (EDT) on Friday, November 5th.  Qualifying will follow at 4:40 PM (EDT).

 

The AAA Texas 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is on Sunday, November 7th and it will be televised live on ESPN beginning at 3:00 PM (EDT). The Motor Racing Network (MRN) will carry the live radio broadcast.

 

To learn more about the GEICO Racing program, please visit: www.geicogarage.com

 

You can also follow GEICO Racing on Twitter: www.twitter.com/geicoracing

 

Please visit the Casey Mears Facebook fan page: www.facebook.com/caseymearsracing

  

 

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Contact: Doug Barnette, Player Management International

Email: dbarnette@pmifirm.com 

Nov 01
2010

SPOOKY MOVE COSTS PAPIS A CHANCE AT A WIN AT HALLODEGA

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , Germain.com , Germain Racing , GEICOgarage , GEICO Racing , GEICO

 

Talladega, AL (October 30, 2010) – After announcing in August that he would be embarking on a full-time schedule in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in 2011, Papis arrived in Talladega poised to pick up where he left off in Daytona in February. 

 

Daytona found ‘Mad’ Max leading his first ever NASCAR laps before Nelson Piquet, Jr., ended the hopes of the #9 GEICO Toyota Tundra in a late race crash.  Undaunted, Papis emerged from the truck with a smile on his face almost as if he was announcing that he had arrived.

 

The last time Papis saw racing action was August 18th in Bristol when he piloted the #9 GEICO Tundra in the O’Reilly 200. 

 

A well-rested Papis took to Talladega Superspeedway for the opening practice on Friday appearing as though he had not missed a beat.  He immediately shot to the top of the charts, finding the #9 GEICO Tundra first fastest for a large portion of the two-hour session.  He ultimately ended up 10th on the chart and headed into qualifying with great hopes.

 

While practice had proved fruitful for Papis and the GEICO team, qualifying provided a slight setback, as Papis’ lap time of 54.030 seconds was only good enough for the 20th starting position.  When he climbed from the #9 GEICO Tundra after his qualifying run, Papis showed little emotion and instead immediately shifted his attention to Saturday’s race. 

 

Saturday found the feisty Italian approaching the Mountain Dew 250 fueled by Fred’s with a businessman’s demeanor.  Prior to climbing into the GEICO Tundra during pre-race, Papis said to the Germain Racing team members, “We are here for just one reason.”  He must have believed his own words because after starting 20th, Papis had jumped to 10th in just the opening lap.  By Lap 8, he was running 7th and settling comfortably into the front pack of cars. 

 

The event’s first caution flag of the day was displayed on Lap 23 when Justin Lofton and Jeffery Earnhardt found themselves tangled up in a crash.  Papis brought the #9 GEICO Tundra to the attention of the Germain Racing pit crew on Lap 26 and they provided him with four fresh Goodyear tires and a full tank of Sunoco racing fuel.  Although Papis came down pit road in the 11th position, the Germain Racing pit crew sent the GEICO Tundra back out onto the racing surface in the 8th position, gaining three spots during the yellow flag visit. 

 

After restarting 8th on Lap 33, Papis quickly jumped to 7th and looked to make calculated moves to reach the front of the field. Lap 37 found Papis getting a bit sideways thanks to the efforts of a fellow competitor.  He did a masterful job of keeping the truck straight and continued his Top 10 run.

 

Few things are spookier than racing at Talladega on Halloween weekend, but what would happen next could very well raise the bar.

 

On Lap 59, Papis was ordered to prepare for a scheduled green flag pit stop, as there had not been a caution flag since Lap 23.  Little did anyone know that a lap later Papis would be the reason for the event’s next caution.  On Lap 60, Craig Goess, Jr., the driver of the #46 truck, made a left hand turn into Papis’ #9 GEICO Toyota Tundra, sending him into the inside retaining wall.  Goess failed to look to his left prior to diving onto pit road, which ultimately caused significant damage to Papis’ truck and relegated him to a 27th place finish. 

 

A frustrated Papis emerged unscathed from his GEICO Tundra, but he measured his words before speaking to anyone within earshot.

 

“It’s so frustrating and I just don’t understand it because I was looking right at him, he was right next to me,” Papis said while visibly guarding his tongue.  “We had a shot at winning this thing, we had the #9 GEICO Tundra running up front all day, so to have something like this happen is certainly disappointing.  But, we had a great day and everyone knew the GEICO team was here and they know that Max is back.”

 

Papis and the GEICO team will next travel to the Lone Star state for next week’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. 

 

Papis and the #9 GEICO Toyota Tundra will hit the 1.5-mile quad-oval of Texas Motor Speedway for the opening practice session at 1:30 PM (EDT) on Thursday, November 4th.  Qualifying will follow at 8:10 PM (EDT).

 

The WinStar World Casino 350K NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race is on Friday, November 5th.  The race will be televised live on SPEED beginning at 8:30 PM (EDT), while the Motor Racing Network (MRN) will carry the live radio broadcast.

 

To learn more about the GEICO Racing program, please visit: www.geicogarage.com

 

You can also follow GEICO Racing on Twitter: www.twitter.com/geicoracing

 

 

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Contact: Doug Barnette, Player Management International

Email: dbarnette@pmifirm.com 

 

Oct 29
2010

MAX IS BACK!

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , Germain.com , Germain Racing , GEICOgarage , GEICO Racing , GEICO

Talladega, AL (October 29, 2010) – After a two-month break, ‘Mad’ Max Papis is back in the saddle of the #9 GEICO Toyota Tundra for this weekend’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Talladega Superspeedway. 

 

Papis has an affinity for superspeedways, as seen earlier this spring in Daytona where he led his first-ever laps as a NASCAR driver. 

 

If today’s opening practice session is any indication, this weekend will be just as exciting as that cold February night in Daytona.  Papis quickly took to the 2.66-mile high-banked tri-oval and rested atop the speed chart for over an hour of the two-hour practice. He ultimately ended up 10th fastest with a lap time of 50.417 seconds at a rate of speed of 189.936 miles per hour.

 

Papis and the GEICO Racing team now await qualifying.  Truck Series qualifying can be seen live on SPEED beginning at 4:30 PM (EDT).

 

The Mountain Dew 250 fueled by Fred’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race is on Saturday, October 30th, and it will be televised live on SPEED beginning at 3:00 PM (EDT), while the Motor Racing Network (MRN) will carry the live radio broadcast.

 

To learn more about the GEICO Racing program, please visit: www.geicogarage.com

 

You can also follow GEICO Racing on Twitter: www.twitter.com/geicoracing

 

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Contact: Doug Barnette, Player Management International

Email: dbarnette@pmifirm.com

Oct 27
2010

Bodine and No. 30 Valvoline Seeking Third Talladega Win

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , Germaincars.com , Germain.com , Germain Racing , Germain Naples Florida , GEICOgarage , GEICO Racing , GEICO

  - Bodine Leads Truck Series Championship Battle by 282-point margin

 - Has Earned Four Wins this season, 21 in his Truck Series Career

 - Germain Racing has 22 Truck Series Victories and Nine Pole Awards

 

October 26, 2010 (Mooresville, N.C.) - Talladega Superspeedway will be a welcome sight for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points leader, Todd Bodine, and the No. 30 Valvoline Tundra crew of Germain Racing. Bodine cleared one of the two remaining unknowns on the 2010 Truck Series schedule as he seeks his second championship title. He and the Germain Racing team left Martinsville Speedway with a third-place finish and a 282-point lead and turned their sights on the last big variable in the championship puzzle—Talladega.

 

“Talladega is the last big unknown on the schedule for this Germain Racing team. We have been to victory lane at Talladega twice, we’ve sat on the pole there, but, we know that when we unload the No. 30 Valvoline Tundra at Talladega, there’s a lot about how it finishes that’s beyond our control. As a crew chief, I’ve got even less control than the man behind the wheel,” said crew chief Mike Hillman Jr.

 

Truck Series champion Todd Bodine, who continues to lead the 2010 standings by a record-setting margin after racking up four wins and two pole awards to add to his  NASCAR career totals, calls Talladega a wild card.

 

“We saw it at Daytona, how close we came to winning that race and how we missed out at the very last second. Talladega is an even bigger wild card than a Daytona or a Martinsville. It’s a track where you have to be as lucky as you are good. This No. 30 Valvoline Tundra team is really good at Talladega. We have two wins there. With the right luck this week, we’ll get our third win at that track,” said Bodine, who has finished fourth or better in each of the four Truck Series events at Talladega, including two wins and one pole award. Further, Bodine has finished fifth or better in each of the 10 superspeedway races.

 

While Talladega is a wild card on the schedule as far as the final result, Hillman Jr. explains that this team knows what to expect when they unload in the Alabama infield.

 

“The truck we are racing is the same truck we’ve used for all four of our superspeedway wins. We know this truck. We know that the No. 30 Valvoline Tundra will be one of the top trucks right off the trailer. A lot of that confidence comes from all of the hard work put into this truck by the guys in the paint shop, the fab shop, and by our team members. And, a lot of our confidence comes from the guy behind the wheel - Todd Bodine. He has a unique talent for tracks like this and it kind of makes my job from the pit box a little bit easier,” said Hillman, whose team has chosen chassis TRD-058 for Talladega duty.

 

Watch Bodine the No. 30 Valvoline Tundra on Saturday, October 30th, at Talladega Superspeedway. You can watch the action on SPEED beginning with practice at 10:00 AM Eastern on Friday, followed by qualifying that afternoon at 4:40 PM and racing on Saturday at 3:00 PM. If you won’t be by a TV, set your DVR, and tune your radio dial to your local MRN affiliate  Follow Germain Racing on Twitter @GermainRacing or on the web at Germainracing.com or become a Facebook fan.

 

About Valvoline: Valvoline, a brand of Ashland Inc. (NYSE: ASH), has been serving American motorists longer than any other motor oil. The Valvoline family of products includes Eagle One® appearance products, Car Brite® car restoration products, Zerex® antifreeze, SynPower® performance products and MaxLife® products created for higher-mileage engines. With more than 850 locations throughout the United States, Valvoline Instant Oil Change® is a leader in serving the quick lube market.

 

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®  Registered trademark of Ashland or its subsidiaries

Oct 25
2010

Bodine, Germain Racing Lead Most Laps, Finish 3rd at Martinsville

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , Germaincars.com , Germain.com , Germain Naples Florida , GEICOgarage , GEICO Racing , GEICO

Mooresville, N.C. (10-25-1010) – The Germain Racing team knew Saturday’s Kroger 200 at Martinsville Speedway was a wild card as far as the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series standings were concerned. In the spring, they brought a top-performing race truck to the track, only to see their race day cut short by someone else’s mistake. Todd Bodine, the series points leader since May, entered the race 262 points ahead, and left with another twenty points cushion. With the help of strong performances by the No. 30 Germain.com Tundra pit crew, Bodine took the lead for 83 laps before finishing third. It was an outstanding effort by team and driver, who were reeling from the loss of Bodine’s mother on Friday evening, as well as working to overcome a tough starting position.

 

“This race was a little eventful for us – not a normal, typical Martinsville for us.  Starting 24th we knew we had to strategize our way to the front and (Mike Hillman) Junior (crew chief) did a great job and had a plan laid out to get track position that we needed and it worked.  We had a really, really good Toyota Tundra.  It kind of went away a little bit at the end.  I was overdriving it a little bit probably,” said Bodine, who was pleased with the third place result of the Germain.com Tundra. “This was one of the wild cards we were worried about with the points race and anything can happen like in the spring time.  A guy stopped in front of me in the middle of the back straightaway and I ran into him, popped the radiator and blew the motor.  That’s stuff that you can’t control.  To come out of here with the Germain.com Tundra in third is a great day, a good run for us.  We’ve got a lot of good runs at Martinsville – we finally led some laps and ended up leading the most laps today so that was good points wise.  I’m proud of everybody at Germain Racing for sticking with me and doing a great job every single week.”

 

Crew chief Mike Hillman Jr. was extremely proud of his team and driver and what they accomplished after 206 laps of Martinsville racing.

 

“I couldn’t ask for more from any one on this Germain.com Tundra team. We’ve all had a very long week for a variety of reasons. To come here, to a track that’s been one where we have struggled or seen our hard work end up in pieces in the garage, and to have a race like we had where we were out front, the truck to beat, for almost half the race. We are very happy with our third-place finish. It was a great reward for all that everyone has worked through this week,” said Hillman.

 

On Saturday, Bodine drove the race truck that went to victory lane at Darlington Raceway. He raced with a determined but heavy heart, which was very evident in his post-race interview with SPEED’s Adam Alexander.

 

“I’m really proud of this team. We didn’t have the fastest truck today, but we finished third. That’s because of what Junior did and the guys in the pits. This is how you win championships. We did really good. I’m proud of this Germain Racing team. It’s tough. I was good until we got on pit road and then it was pretty hard. It’s all good now. Mom and Dad were watching. They were in the grandstands in the sky rooting for me. Mom and Dad loved this race track and I know they were with me,” explained Bodine of his race, which came the day after he found out his mother, Carol June Bodine, had passed away.

 

The No. 30 Valvoline Tundra races next on Saturday, October 30th at Talladega Superspeedway, a track where Bodine and Germain Racing have combined for two victories and a pole award. You can watch the coverage on SPEED beginning with practice at 10:00 AM Eastern on Friday, followed by qualifying that afternoon at 4:40 PM and racing on Saturday at 3:00 PM. If you won’t be by a TV, set your DVR, and tune your radio dial to your local MRN affiliate.

 

 

Follow Germain Racing on Twitter @GermainRacing or on the web at Germainracing.com or become a Facebook fan.

 

When shopping for your new or used car or truck, head directly to Germain.com to find the perfect vehicle or visit your local Germain dealer in Ohio, Florida, or Arkansas. Germain.com is part of Germain Motor Company, a top-25 automotive retail network with 21 dealerships and more than 60 years of experience.

 

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Oct 19
2010

Germain Racing, Bodine Going Pink for Kroger 200 at Martinsville Speedway

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , Germaincars.com , Germain.com , Germain Racing , Germain Naples Florida , GEICOgarage , GEICO Racing

 - Bodine Leads the Truck Series Championship Battle by a 262-point margin

 - No. 30 Germain.com Tundra Will Sport Special Pink Scheme for October NBCA

 - Germain Racing has 22 Truck Series Victories and Eight Pole Awards

 - Bodine Owns 21 Truck Series wins with Germain Racing and 36 NASCAR career wins

 

October 19, 2010 (Mooresville, N.C.) - Taking a record-setting point lead into Martinsville Speedway for Saturday’s Kroger 200 is no reason for the No. 30 Germain.com Tundra team to throw caution to the wind. Instead, driver Todd Bodine and crew chief Mike Hillman Jr. have some plans in place for how to deal with the endless variables presented by racing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series on one of the toughest short tracks in NASCAR.

 

“Martinsville is a tough little short track. Anything can happen and we know we have to come out of there with a good finish. Do we want to win? Of course we do! We are going to Martinsville with high expectations, and, at the same time, we realize what our finish needs to be,” explained Bodine, the 2010 Truck Series championship points leader, who has collected four wins behind the wheel of the No. 30 Tundra this year.

 

When Bodine says the Germain Racing team is heading to Martinsville Speedway to collect the team’s first short-track win, he’s serious. The team returns to the track with TRD-122, which ran at Martinsville in the spring, and has since been to Darlington’s winner’s circle. It also passed a recent testing session with flying colors.

 

“We tested at Little Rock and we think we have the right truck for Martinsville. I expect that the Germain.com Tundra will still be tight in the middle of the corners, but we have a game plan to fix it,” said Hillman.

 

Bodine further explained the philosophy behind the testing session.

 

“We didn’t go to Little Rock to find a chassis setup for Martinsville. We went to Little Rock to improve on our short track program and we are now going into Martinsville with a little extra optimism. We have a direction to go. We went to Little Rock to figure some other things out and we did. We should be fine,” said Bodine.

 

At Bodine’s insistence, the Germain Racing team took their typical effort to promote October as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month a step further. In addition to sporting pink ribbons, the No. 30 Germain.com Tundra will be very pink.

 

“For a lot of reasons, promoting Breast Cancer Awareness has been an important mission for Germain Racing since our first year in the Trucks. All Germain Racing vehicles have pink ribbons in October. The Germain.com Tundra will be very pink at Martinsville. Everything on the truck that would normally be red is going to be pink. It’s going to look great. I can’t wait to see it,” said Bodine.

 

Watch for Bodine in the pink Germain.com Tundra on Saturday, October 23, at Martinsville Speedway. SPEED will cover Truck Series practice on Friday, the 22nd, at 1:00 PM ET, and live racing on Saturday at 12:30 PM.

 

Follow Germain Racing on Twitter @GermainRacing or on the web at Germainracing.com or become a Facebook fan.

 

When shopping for your new or used car or truck, head directly to Germain.com to find the perfect vehicle or visit your local Germain dealer in Ohio, Florida, or Arkansas. Germain.com is part of Germain Motor Company, a top-25 automotive retail network with 21 dealerships and more than 60 years of experience.

 

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Oct 19
2010

Michael Annett Revisits Gateway International Raceway to Promote Pilot Flying J Coffee Both On and Off the Track

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , Germaincars.com , Germain.com , Germain Racing , Germain Naples Florida

Madison, Ill. (October 19, 2010) – Germain Racing driver Michael Annett will return to Gateway International Raceway this week after posting an 11th place finish on the 1.25 mile oval in the NASCAR Nationwide Series Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 held earlier in the season on July 17. Sporting a special Pilot Flying J Coffee paint scheme on his No. 15 Toyota Camry, Annett and his team will compete in Saturday’s 5-Hour Energy 250, the final non-companion race of the season for the Nationwide Series.

 

Pilot Flying J, a longtime sponsor of Annett in the ARCA Racing Series, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and currently in the Nationwide Series, maintains one of their over 550 locations just across the street from Gateway International Raceway. Convenient to race fans and travelers alike, the Pilot Travel Center location on State Route 203 at exit 4 off of Interstates 55 and 70, will host Annett on race day from 12 p.m.-1 p.m. for an autograph session. In conjunction with Saturday’s race, samples of Pilot Flying J’s “Best Coffee on the Interstate” will be provided free to race fans and store customers.

 

Saturday’s 5-Hour Energy 250 will be Annett’s third time featuring the special Pilot Flying J Coffee paint scheme. The second year Nationwide Series driver piloted the car at Kansas Speedway and Auto Club Speedway earlier this month. In addition to his time on the track, Annett will also sign autographs at Gateway International Raceway on Friday from 6:15-7:15 p.m. on pit road.

 

Eager to return to Gateway, Annett will look to benefit from his previous track experience. In addition to his 11th place effort there earlier this year, Annett boasts a seventh place Rookie of the Race finish on the 1.25 mile oval in the 2009 Nationwide Series event at Gateway. The 24-year-old driver also has experience there in the Camping World Truck Series where he had a ninth place qualifying effort in 2008 and in the ARCA Racing Series presented by RE/MAX and Menards where he started third and finished sixth in 2007.

 

The 32nd of 35 races in the 2010 Nationwide Series season kicks off with practice on Friday from 2:30-4 p.m. followed by final practice from 4:30-6 p.m. Qualifying begins at 10:35 a.m. on Saturday and drivers start their engines for the 200 lap 5-Hour Energy 250 at 3:30 p.m. Final practice, qualifying and the race will air live on ESPN 2. Race coverage begins at 3 p.m. on Saturday. All times are ET.

 

For more information on Michael Annett and Germain Racing’s No. 15 NASCAR Nationwide Series team, check out www.MichaelAnnett.com and www.GermainRacing.com. Get live updates on Twitter @MichaelAnnett.

 

About Pilot Flying J:

Pilot Flying J is headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, and has more than 550 locations in North America. The company employs more than 20,000 people and is the largest retail operator of travel centers in North America.

 

Contact: Maggie Martin, Rising Star Management Group, mmartin@risingstarmg.com

 

Oct 13
2010

Michael Annett Teams with Valvoline at Charlotte Motor Speedway for Fourth Nationwide Series New Car Race of 2010

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , Germaincars.com , Germain.com , Germain Racing , Germain Naples Florida

Concord, N.C. (October 12, 2010) – As the NASCAR Nationwide Series circuit competes at Charlotte Motor Speedway this week, Michael Annett and his Germain Racing teammates will race just miles from their Mooresville, N.C. headquarters. Competing in his No. 15 Toyota Camry wrapped with Valvoline’s classic red, white and blue paint scheme, Annett and his team are again excited to partner with Valvoline and represent their brand for Friday’s Nationwide Series Dollar General 300.

 

After partnering with the Germain Racing organization earlier in the season, Valvoline will make its second appearance on the No. 15 Toyota Camry after the car carried the familiar Valvoline colors in the Labor Day weekend event at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

 

The Friday night Dollar General 300 will be the fourth and final race in the Nationwide Series new car before its full integration into the series in 2011. Adapting well to the changes that the new car brings, Annett finished 12th in his new Toyota Camry at its debut at Daytona International Speedway (July 4), 16th at Michigan International Speedway (August 14) and 20th at Richmond International Raceway (September 10). The second year Nationwide Series driver considers Charlotte Motor Speedway his favorite track and really likes the way the new car drives, so Annett looks to capitalize on these attributes with a strong run on Friday.

 

Longtime sponsor, Pilot Flying J, will continue their “Best Coffee on the Interstate” activation program this weekend at the track with sampling of their renowned coffee brand in the Charlotte Motor Speedway fan zone. Annett introduced Pilot Flying J’s coffee initiative to the sport at the beginning of the month by carrying a special Pilot Flying J Coffee paint scheme on his No. 15 Toyota Camry at Nationwide Series races at Kansas Speedway (October 2) and Auto Club Speedway (October 9). The No.

15 Pilot Flying J Camry will also hit the track at Gateway International Raceway (October 23), Texas Motor Speedway (November 6) and Phoenix International Raceway (November 13).

 

Crossing paths during the week leading into the May race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Annett and Fisher’s ATV World host, Brian Fisher, met up for an ATV ride at Carolina Adventure World in Winnsboro, S.C. Annett, his crew chief Ryan Fugle, and Pilot Flying J executives Scott Wombold and Brian Mosher participated in the ride and their escapade was featured on Fisher’s ATV World on the Outdoor Channel this summer. To thank Fisher for the one-of-a-kind experience, Annett and the No. 15 Germain Racing team have invited him to be an honorary pit crew member during this week’s race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

 

With the Nationwide Series in the new car for the first time at Charlotte Motor Speedway, drivers and teams will have an additional day of practice on Wednesday with practice sessions from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. and 2 p.m.-6 p.m.

Practice will resume on Thursday from 2:15-3:20 p.m. and final practice will run from 6:15-7 p.m. Race day begins with qualifying at 3:05 p.m. and cars hit the track for the Dollar General 300 under the lights at Charlotte Motor Speedway at 8 p.m. Tune to ESPN 2 for live race coverage beginning at 7:30 p.m. on Friday. All times are ET.

 

For more information on Michael Annett and Germain Racing’s No. 15 Nationwide Series team, check out www.MichaelAnnett.com and www.GermainRacing.com. Get live updates on Twitter @MichaelAnnett.

 

About Valvoline: Valvoline, a brand of Ashland Inc. (NYSE: ASH), has been serving American motorists longer than any other motor oil. The Valvoline family of products includes Eagle One® appearance products, Car Brite® car restoration products, Zerex® antifreeze, SynPower® performance products and MaxLife® products created for higher-mileage engines. With more than 850 locations throughout the United States, Valvoline Instant Oil Change® is a leader in serving the quick lube market.

 

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® Registered trademark of Ashland or its subsidiaries

 

Contact: Maggie Martin, Rising Star Management Group, mmartin@risingstarmg.com

 

Oct 11
2010

Michael Annett and No. 15 Germain Racing Team Salvage 20th Place Finish Despite Late Race Incident

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , Germaincars.com , Germain.com , Germain Racing , Germain Naples Florida

Fontana, Calif. (October 11, 2010) – With a respectable finish in sight, NASCAR Nationwide Series driver Michael Annett was struck with tough luck after a cut tire went down with only 25 laps remaining in Saturday’s 150 lap CampingWorld.com 300 at Auto Club Speedway.

 

Annett secured a 22nd place starting position for Saturday afternoon’s race and within 10 laps quickly advanced 10 spots to 15th. Determined to battle with the frontrunners, he continued to work his way forward, tapping into the top-10 on lap 25. Although he fought a loose handling racecar, Annett consistently contended with the top-10 cars and continued to run lap times comparable with cars competing in the top-five spots.

 

In a five lap side-by-side battle with the No. 62 and No. 98 cars, Annett’s top-10 finish in the making was slashed when he cut a right front tire. With the blown tire limiting his control of the car, Annett and the No. 62 were both forced into the wall.

 

With a caution out for the incident on lap 125, Annett brought his No. 15 Pilot Flying J Coffee Toyota Camry to pit road for his crew to survey the damage. The right side of the Camry proved to need a generous amount of repair, which brought the car to pit road three times during yellow flag conditions.

 

Commending his hardworking team for getting him back on the track, Annett restarted one lap down in 28th with only 17 laps to go. Despite the heavy damage to the right side of his car, Annett was now in a race for the Lucky Dog. Earning his way back on the lead lap for the restart on lap 145, Annett pushed his way to a 20th place finish in the remaining five laps of the CampingWorld.com 300.

 

Approaching the final five races of the 2010 season, Annett will head to Charlotte Motor Speedway for the fourth and final race in the Nationwide Series new car before its full introduction into the series in 2011. The Nationwide Series Dollar General 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway commences at 8 p.m. ET with live coverage on ESPN 2 beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET.

 

For more information on Michael Annett and Germain Racing’s No. 15 NASCAR Nationwide Series team, check out www.MichaelAnnett.com and www.GermainRacing.com. Get live updates on Twitter @MichaelAnnett.

 

About Pilot Flying J:

Pilot Flying J is headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, and has more than 550 locations in North America. The company employs more than 20,000 people and is the largest retail operator of travel centers in North America.

 

Contact: Maggie Martin, Rising Star Management Group, mmartin@risingstarmg.com

 

Oct 11
2010

HOMETOWN BOY DOES GOOD: MEARS NETS SECOND CONSECUTIVE TOP 25

Posted by lori in Valvoline , Sherwin Williams , Safety Kleen , NASCAR Sprint Cup Series , Germaincars.com , Germain.com , Germain Racing , Germain Naples Florida , GEICOgarage , GEICO Racing , GEICO , Casey Mears , Bootie Barker

Fontana, CA (October 10, 2010) – After the checkered flag had been displayed in Kansas last weekend, GEICO driver Casey Mears was quick to pack up his things and board a flight with his wife and daughter to California.  That’s because Mears spent his childhood in Bakersfield, just 150-miles removed from Fontana. 

 

Mears’ week proved fruitful, as he got to visit home, and also celebrated his daughter’s second birthday.  Capping off his week was the success that met him when he arrived in Fontana for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series’ opening practice session on Friday.

 

Mears sent the #13 GEICO Toyota Camry to the top of the speed charts within five minutes of being on the racetrack.  He quickly shot up to seventh and would later end up 23rd when the only practice session prior to qualifying ended.  The #13 GEICO Camry was the fastest ‘go or go home’ car, with Jason Leffler being the next closest contender in 30th.

 

When qualifying got underway, Mears went out 38th, meaning he would be the third ‘go or go home’ car to take to the racing surface for his two lap qualifying effort.  Mears would not need to wait around to learn his fate for Sunday’s race because he quickly placed the #13 GEICO Toyota Camry on Row 6 on the starting grid for the Pepsi Max 400.  Qualifying 12th, Mears handed GEICO their best ever qualifying effort since their foray into the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in 2009.

 

Hot temperatures heated the racetrack when race day arrived and a stronger than expected wind worried crew chiefs and drivers alike.  Fortunately, it did not appear that either of these conditions would ultimately play a role in Sunday’s race. 

 

After starting 12th, Mears held strong in the Top 15 when the green flag was displayed, battling for positions and even garnering significant television time while holding off several Chase contenders. Unfortunately, however, he soon appeared to freefall through the field.  On Lap 23, Mears radioed to Crew Chief Bootie Barker, “The car is really loose.  It’s tight in the center and loose in and loose off.”  Barker assured him they would go to work on the #13 GEICO Camry when the first caution flag came out. 

 

They would not have to wait long, as Greg Biffle’s engine blew on Lap 40, bringing out the event’s first caution flag of the day, and allowing the Germain Racing team the opportunity to right the #13 GEICO Camry. Mears came down pit road and took on four fresh tires, a tank of fuel, and adjustments.  Mears entered the pits 32nd, but the Germain Racing pit crew sent him back out 30th, netting two positions during the stop.

 

After restarting 30th on Lap 46, Mears quickly jumped to 23rd by Lap 51 before the event’s second caution flag of the day was brought out by a Marcos Ambrose spin on Lap 53.  When Mears brought the #13 GEICO Camry in for service, the Germain Racing pit crew outfitted his car with four tires, fuel, and a half round of wedge in the left rear.  Despite making the adjustments during the pit stop, Mears would not lose any positions on pit road and would restart 22nd when the race went back under green on Lap 58.  However, the caution flag would immediately make another appearance on behalf of Carl Edwards before one lap was completed under green.  Having picked up two spots on the single green flag lap, Mears restarted 20th on Lap 59.  Mears picked up three positions in two laps and by Lap 63 he was flirting with the Top 15, as he sat 17th. 

 

Mears continued to battle a loose condition and to add to the issue, he reported a vibration on Lap 95.  When the caution flag was displayed on lap 114, the Germain Racing pit crew serviced the #13 GEICO Camry and sent Mears back out two spots to the good, allowing him to restart 19th after coming into the pits in the 21st position. 

 

The call of the day came on Lap 155 when Mears was running 24th when the yellow flag waved.  During Mears’ trip down pit road, Barker ordered the Germain Racing pit crew to only put two tires on the #13 GEICO Camry in order to gain valuable track position.  He added that they needed to pack the fuel tank full of fuel in hopes of having enough to make it to the end.  The former worked, as Mears was able to pick up 17 positions on pit road, but the latter did not fair as well, as the #13 GEICO Camry would still be half a lap short of being able to go the distance. 

 

Restarting 7th with just 42 laps remaining, Mears ran solidly in the Top 10 before competitors with four fresh tires would begin to get the best of him.  He also continued to suffer from an incident that happened midway through the race.  A fellow competitor took a trip through the infield grass, but Mears suffered the consequences, as grass and dirt filled the grill of the #13 GEICO Camry.  The Germain Racing pit crew worked feverishly to clean out the grill, but the engine would continue to lose power nevertheless. Despite the setback, Mears still managed to run comfortably in the Top 20. 

 

As the race began to wind down, Barker began to contemplate when he would need to bring the #13 GEICO Camry down pit road to top off with fuel.  On Lap 182, the racing gods answered his prayer when the caution flag was displayed, allowing Mears the opportunity to take on the necessary Sunoco racing fuel.  He would also take on four tires and then restart the race in the 21st position on Lap 187. 

 

When you go to Hollywood, you would expect drama.  NASCAR is no different, and with just seven laps remaining in the 400-mile race, the final caution flag of the day came out, providing fans with an entertaining finish. 

 

Mears brought the #13 GEICO Camry down pit road and took on just two tires before restarting the race 21st with just three laps left on the docket. Despite losing power in the engine and battling the flag-to-flag loose condition, Mears managed to hustle to his second consecutive Top 25 finish and also put smiles on the faces of his hometown crowd. 

 

“We are competitive and this GEICO team can be really good; we’re getting there,” Mears said after climbing from the GEICO Camry.  “We’ve come a long way pretty quick and we have high expectations for ourselves, so we’re going to continue working hard at the shop, as well as working on getting sponsorship for the remaining races, both this year and next.” 

 

He continued, “We have GEICO on-board for Charlotte and Talladega for the remainder of this year, so we need to find a company to partner with us for the other races and have as much fun as we’re having building this program. GEICO is a tremendous partner and their support is unwavering; I really can’t thank them enough for giving us this opportunity.”

 

Next week, Casey Mears and the GEICO team get to sleep in their own beds, as they will race under the lights at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

 

Mears and the #13 GEICO Toyota Camry will hit the 1.5-mile quad-oval in Concord, NC, for the opening practice session at 3:30 PM (EDT) on Thursday, October 14th.  Qualifying will follow at 7:10 PM (EDT).

 

The Bank of America 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is on Saturday, October 16th, and it will be televised live on ABC beginning at 7:30 PM (EDT), while the Performance Racing Network (PRN) will carry the live radio broadcast.

 

To learn more about the GEICO Racing program, please visit: www.geicogarage.com

 

You can also follow GEICO Racing on Twitter: www.twitter.com/geicoracing

 

Please visit the Casey Mears Facebook fan page: www.facebook.com/caseymearsracing

 

 

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Contact: Doug Barnette, Player Management International

Email: dbarnette@pmifirm.com