NASCAR

NNS: Nationwide Children’s Hospital 200 at Mid-Ohio Preview

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LEXINGTON, Ohio — For the second week in a row, the NASCAR Nationwide Series will turn both left and right, as this weekend they navigate the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for the Nationwide Children’s Hospital 200.  Race No. 22 of the 33-race season will be contested on the 2.25-mile, 13-turn road course over 90 laps on Saturday afternoon.  NASCAR Countdown will kick-off coverage beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPN with the green flag set to fly at 3:03 p.m. ET.  Radio coverage will be available on MRN and Sirius XM Ch. 90.  Saturday’s Coors Light Pole Qualifying session will air on ESPN2 at 9:30 a.m. ET.

LAST TIME AT MID-OHIO

Last season marked the inaugural Nationwide Series race at Mid-Ohio, and A.J. Allmendinger took the No. 22 Team Penske Ford to victory lane in a green-white-checker finish.  It was the second victory of the season for Allmendinger, who previously won at Road America.  Michael McDowell, Sam Hornish, Jr., Max Papis, Brian Vickers, Elliott Sadler, Marcos Ambrose, Justin Allgaier, Trevor Bayne, and Jeremy Clements rounded out the top-10.  The race was slowed by seven yellow flags for 18 laps and featured eight lead changes among seven different leaders.

ENTRY LIST NOTABLES

With 37 cars on the preliminary entry list, all teams will make the field.  Kenny Habul will pilot the No. 20 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing and Sam Hornish, Jr. will drive the No. 54 Monster Energy machine as Habul’s teammate.  Alex Tagliani will drive the car that won this race last year, the No. 22 Ford for Team Penske.

TITLE FIGHT HEATS UP

Chase Elliott finished sixth last weekend at Watkins Glen, increasing his lead in the championship standings to 12 points over JR Motorsports teammate Regan Smith.  Elliott continues to impress in his rookie season, recording 15 top-10 finishes in 22 races.

“It was a struggle for me all weekend and you just have to improve on (road racing) if you want to run with those guys that win these races,” Elliott said after The Glen.  “You have to bring your best, and then some. Those guys that run up front in these races are bad to the bone.  Now that I have some notes this should help me the next time we come here and even next weekend in Mid-Ohio.”

It was a different story at The Glen for Smith, as he finished a disappointing 17th after two unscheduled green-flag pit stops put a damper on what could have been a strong finish.

“All we can do from this one is move on,” Smith said.  “This was definitely a huge disappointment for our entire team. We gave up a lot of points today.”

READY TO HIT HIS MARKS

Justin Marks will pilot the No. 31 SOL REPUBLIC Chevrolet for Turner Scott Motorsports this weekend in just his second Nationwide Series start of 2014.  Marks had a strong run earlier this season at Road America, before a fuel gamble relegated him to a 24th-place result after running in the top-five throughout the race.  Marks has exctensive experience at Mid-Ohio in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, and the American Le Mans Series.  In just five starts, Marks has two wins and two poles.

“I’m looking forward to Mid-Ohio this weekend,” Marks said.  I think we’ve got a car that can contend for the win. I was happy with the speed of our SOL REPUBLIC Chevy at Road America and I think we can carry that over.  It’s been a few years since I’ve been to Mid-Ohio, but I’ve won some races there and my confidence is pretty high going into this weekend.”

MATCHED PERFECT AND STAGGERED SPECIAL

NASCAR Nationwide Series teams will have seven sets of Goodyear Eagle Road Course Radials at their disposal for this weekend’s event.  Teams  will run two brand new Goodyear tire codes at Mid-Ohio, with D-4622 on the front tire positions and D-4624 on the rear.  The wet weather radials (D-4215) will be available should the conditions warrant.

WEEKEND SCHEDULE (EASTERN STANDARD TIME)

Friday, August 15h

1:30 PM – 2:30 PM – NNS Practice

3:00 PM – 4:30 PM – NNS Final Practice

Saturday, August 16th

9:40 AM – NNS Qualifying

2:45 PM – NNS Race

FOLLOW RUBBINGS RACING

Check back on our website throughout the weekend for updates on all of the action from Mid-Ohio.  Be sure to follow us on Twitter (@RubbingsRacing) and like us on Facebook for updates.

ENTRY LIST
2014 NATIONWIDE CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL 200
MID-OHIO SPORTS CAR COURSE

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About Brian Eberly

Brian Eberly (@beberly18) is a Certified Public Accountant and Manager of Field Accounting at a transportation company, but when he isn’t at the office you can most likely find him at a racetrack, watching a race on television, or following the action on social media. Eberly became interested in NASCAR in the nineties when Jeff Gordon was dominating the scene, and became hooked when he attended his first race with his dad in 1999 at Michigan International Speedway. Eberly has been writing about NASCAR since 2012 for various websites. An Illinois native and Northern Illinois University graduate, Eberly travels throughout the Midwest covering racing events in multiple series. When not following racing, he can be found on the golf course (usually trying to find his golf ball) and following the Bears, Blackhawks, Cubs, Bulls, and of course the NIU Huskies.

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