Race Preview: Bojangles Southern 500

Race Preview: Bojangles Southern 500

Ryan Newman, No. 31 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
Race Notes and Quotes

Event: Bojangles Southern 500
Date: Sunday, September 2, 2018
Track: Darlington Raceway
Location: Darlington, SC

This Week's Caterpillar Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at Darlington Raceway ... Ryan Newman will make his 608th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series start when the Series throws it back to 1985 at "The Lady in Black".The Rocket Man won the 2003 pole at the 1.366-mile oval. In total, he owns seven top-five and 13 top-10 finishes in 19 starts along with having an average start of 10.2 and average finish of 11.7. Newman also ranks eighth in championship points earned over the last eight events.

Throwing it Back at Darlington with Cat Racing ... Richard Childress Racing is in its 10th season with Caterpillar on board the No. 31 Camaro ZL1. It's also Cat Racing's 26th season in NASCAR. For more than 90 years, Caterpillar Inc. has been making sustainable progress possible and driving positive change on every continent. Customers turn to Caterpillar to help them develop infrastructure, energy and natural resource assets. With 2017 sales and revenues of $45.462 billion, Caterpillar is the world's leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives. The company principally operates through its three primary segments - Construction Industries, Resource Industries and Energy & Transportation - and also provides financing and related services through its Financial Products segment. For more information, visit caterpillar.com. To connect with us on social media, visit caterpillar.com/social-media.

Richard Childress Racing's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series history at Darlington Raceway ... Richard Childress is tied for third in all-time car owner victories with Holman-Moody and the Wood Brothers at Darlington Raceway with eight wins each. Dale Earnhardt collected all of RCR's victories at the South Carolina-based track. In 121 collective starts, RCR boasts 23 top-five and 40 top-10 finishes at the 1.366-mile egg-shaped oval with five different drivers including Clint Bowyer, Earnhardt, Kevin Harvick, Jeff Burton, Ryan Newman and Robby Gordon. The Welcome, N.C.-based organization holds an average starting position of 17th, an average finishing position of 18.8, has completed 37,943 of the 41,866 contested laps (90.6 percent) and has collectively led 2,606 laps.

RCR in the MENCS ... In 2,894 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series starts dating back to 1969, RCR has amassed 48 pole awards,108 wins, 488 top-five finishes and 1,060 top-10 finishes, with an average starting position of 17.8 and an average finishing position of 16.2. 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. 

The Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 ... Chevrolet, the winningest brand in motorsports, debuted the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 to Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series competition this season. The Camaro ZL1 is the most advanced Chevrolet Cup Car ever developed and is also the most authentic, featuring rear-wheel drive, a fuel injected V8 engine and a manual gear box.

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 www.facebook.com/RichardChildressRacing and at www.RCRracing.com along with official driver pages - http://www.facebook.com/austindillon3 and www.facebook.com/RyanNewmanNASCAR.

Catch the Action ... The Bojangles Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway will be televised live Sunday, September 2 beginning at 6 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network and will be broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. 


This year RCR and Caterpillar asked you to come up with the Cat Racing throwback car. Talk about your No. 31 Camaro ZL1 for this weekend and what inspired it?

"I was given free rein to pick out a car that would represent Caterpillar, myself and the team. I did some research and found that one of the guys I never got to meet, always wanted to meet and always thought a lot of, Neil Bonnett, was a teammate to Dale Earnhardt and drove the No. 31 Chevy. Our No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet is painted like the Goodwrench/Mom & Pop's paint scheme he drove at Talladega Superspeedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway in 1993. I really love the look of this throwback and hope the fans love this scheme as much as we do. It means a lot to go to Darlington and honor Neil and his relationship with RCR."

Why is Darlington Raceway your favorite track?

"I just like it because it is challenging to run right up next to the fence. You've got to change what you do every lap. That's a challenge. Tires fall off. It's like two racetracks in one with two different ends."

Do you remember getting your first Darlington Stripe?

"It took me years to get my first Darlington stripe. I think I was qualifying in 2007 or 2008 and I hit the wall two laps in a row. I've not hit the wall very many times there. It's been pretty good to me. My first time going to Darlington Raceway was with Buddy Baker during a test. Buddy just took me around and showed me the line. We drove the track forwards and drove the track backwards. We just looked at everything. I had to correct him a couple of times on which end Turns 1 and 2 were verses 3 and 4. That was fun. It was easy to drive those cars because they were so fast, and Buddy taught me more what not to do, then what to do."