• Sam Hornish Jr., driver of the No. 12 Alliance Truck Parts Dodge Challenger, will make his 18th start of the 2012 NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) season Sunday afternoon in the STP 300 at Joliet, IL.
• This will mark Hornish’s second NNS start at Chicagoland Speedway – he finished fifth last season in the fall race. He has three previous NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) starts with his best result 24th in 2010. He also has seven IZOD IndyCar Series (IICS) starts at the venue which include two poles (2006 & 2002) and two victories (2002 & 2004). His average finish at Chicagoland in IndyCar is 2.7
• Hornish is a Nationwide Dash4Cash eligible driver this weekend – if he finishes ahead of the other three Nationwide Dash4Cash drivers he will earn a $100,000 bonus
• This weekend will mark Hornish’s 51st NNS start – he has scored one victory, 6 top-five and 16 top-10 finishes
• After 17 races, Hornish and the No. 12 Alliance Truck Parts Dodge team are fourth in the NNS Championship point standings.
• This weekend the No. 12 Alliance Truck Parts Dodge Challenger will race with chassis PRS-221 which Hornish raced to a ninth-place finish at Charlotte earlier this season
• Consistency has been a key for Hornish this season as he has completed 3017 of 3019 laps thus far (99.9%)
• Fun fact – Sam’s ideal get-away is a trip to the mountains, but his girls prefer the beach – so that is where he goes
• Penske Racing has 359 all-time race victories with 99 stock car wins and 419 pole positions overall including 125 NASCAR poles.
• #PenskePride- Penske Racing is asking fans to show their Penske Pride through a unique social media contest that will last for the balance of the 2012 season. Through the #PenskePride contest, each race weekend fans will have the opportunity to Tweet @PenskeRacing pictures showing their support of the Penske Racing organization, their favorite Penske Racing driver(s) or teams in unique and creative ways, using the hashtag #PenskePride. The best weekly photo will be named Fan Photo of the Week. At the end of each month, a Fan Photo of the Month will be selected from the weekly winners. The best monthly photos will be voted on by @PenskeRacing followers to be named Fan Photo of the Year. The winner of Photo of the Year will receive the Ultimate Penske Racing Fan Experience including tickets and hot passes to the 2013 NASCAR All-Star Race, autographed items and a tour of the Penske Racing facility with a Penske driver
Sam Hornish Jr. comments about this weekend’s STP 300
“I’m really looking forward to Chicago. We ran really well there last year. We had one bad pit stop where a couple of the lug-nuts got away from the tire-changer. We were already debating whether to take two or four and we should have taken two because it was the left-front ones that got away from him, but we finished fifth. There was a really long green flag run there towards the end and when we came out we were running tenth or so and we were able to work our way back up to fifth without any yellow flags. I felt like we had a car that was capable of winning there but we didn’t get the job done. We’ll go back there with our Alliance Truck Parts Dodge and try to get it done this year.”
Crew Chief Chad Walter comments about this weekend’s STP 300
“Chicago was one of the few tracks on the schedule that we ran in 2011 with the Alliance Truck Parts Dodge Challenger. We had an extremely fast car last year, and unfortunately a few untimely pit road miscues ultimately cost us a shot at the win, though we did manage a top-five. I think that this track suits Sam’s driving style, and we look to continue our pursuit of the point leaders. The shop has worked very hard to not only provide us with great cars, but improve on them as we get into the last 15 races of the season. We look to put the Penske Dodge in victory lane.”