Preview: Coca-Cola 600

Ryan Newman, No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS
Race Notes and Quotes

Event: Coca-Cola 600
Date: Saturday, May 28, 2017
Track: Charlotte Motor Speedway
Location: Concord, N.C.

This Week's Grainger Chevrolet SS at Charlotte Motor Speedway ... Newman will make his 560th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start when the Series competes in the longest event of the season at Charlotte Motor Speedway.  In total at CMS, Newman has recorded runner-up finishes two times (fall, 2003; Coke 600, 2009) along with nine pole awards, five top-five, 14 top-10 finishes. The "Rocketman" has led 278 laps in competition. The South Bend, Indiana native has an average start of 9.2 and average finish of 17.3. When calculating points earned in the last 10 events at Charlotte, Newman ranks fifth in most points accumulated.

600 Miles of Remembrance ... The No. 31 team will be honoring Lance Corporal Daniel Freeman Swaim of the United States Marine Corps. Swaim is the cousin of Cruz Gonzales, gas man on the Grainger Chevrolet team. Swaim served in the 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. On November 10, 2005, he passed away from wounds sustained from an improvised explosive device while conducting combat operations against enemy forces during Operation Steel Curtain in Karabilah, Iraq. 

Winner, Winner ... Newman increased his chances of punching his ticket to the MENCS playoffs with a victory at Phoenix Raceway on March 19th in the No. 31 Grainger Chevrolet. The win equates to the driver's 18th-career Cup Series victory and RCR's 106th.

About Grainger ... Grainger is a business-to-business distributor of products used to maintain, repair and operate facilities.  Approximately 3 million businesses and institutions worldwide rely on Grainger for products such as safety gloves, ladders, motors and janitorial supplies, along with services like inventory management and technical support. These customers represent a broad collection of industries including healthcare, manufacturing, government and hospitality. They place orders online, with mobile devices, over the phone and at local branches. More than 4,800 key manufacturers supply Grainger with 1.5 million products stocked in Grainger's distribution centers and branches. To learn more, visit

Catch Ryan ... Newman is scheduled to participate in a question and answer session on behalf of Coca-Cola Racing on Sunday. He'll stop by the Pit Party Stage starting at 2:55 p.m. local time inside Turn 1 at the Charlotte Motor Speedway. Fans will need to upgrade their race ticket to receive a Pit Party pass in order to attend. To upgrade, visit: Pit Party Passes.

Richard Childress Racing's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series history at Charlotte Motor Speedway ... In 157 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series starts at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Richard Childress Racing teams have earned seven points-paying victories (four wins with Dale Earnhardt, one with Jeff Burton and two with Kevin Harvick) and four All-Star race victories (three with Earnhardt and one with Harvick), giving RCR 11 total Cup Series checkered flags at the Concord, N.C.-based track. RCR boasts 22 top-five and 50 top-10 finishes at the 1.5-mile track. Childress, a former driver on NASCAR's senior circuit, contributed two of those top-10 finishes from 1978 to 1979. The Welcome, N.C. organization has led a combined 1,149 laps at the Charlotte facility.

RCR in the MENCS ... In 2,769 Sprint Cup Series starts dating back to 1969, RCR has amassed 48 pole awards,106 wins, 477 top-five finishes and 1,036 top-10 finishes, with an average starting position of 17.7 and an average finishing position of 16.1. RCR has earned 15 total championships (six Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championships with Earnhardt in 1986, '87, '90, '91, '93 and '94, six NASCAR XFINITY Series titles, two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series titles and one ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards title) and was the first organization to win titles in NASCAR's three national series. 

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Interactive RCR ... For up-to-date news and exclusive content, visit RCR's corporate Twitter page — @RCRracing — along with the RCR Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team Twitter page — @RCRCup, and driver Twitter pages @austindillon3 and @RyanJNewman. Information about the 15-time championship winning organization can be found on Facebook at and at along with official driver pages —, and

Catch the Action ... The Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway is scheduled to be televised live on Sunday, May 28 on FOX beginning at 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio, channel 90.


What are your thoughts on adding an extra stage in the Coca-Cola 600?

"I'm not sure adding an extra stage will mean a whole lot. It is obviously going to add another caution to the mix which changes the race a little bit. If the extra stage caution would not have happened organically so-to-speak, I don't know if it will make a difference. It's a break that we know has been scheduled and we'll take it when it comes."

What is the key to being successful in the longest race of the year?

"I think one of the biggest keys to being successful in the Coca-Cola 600 is just keeping your head in the game the whole time. It's a really long race. It's four plus hours and just staying focused. It's going to be hot typically. I'm going to keep hydrated and having a car that drives well.."