Race: Pure Michigan 400
Date/Time: Sunday, August 16th / 2:30 PM ET
TV/Radio: NBCSN / MRN RADIO / SIRIUSXM
Michigan: “I think Michigan International Speedway (MIS) is going to be an unknown,” Allmendinger said. “You look back at Indy (Indianapolis Motor Speedway), but that track is so different compared to Michigan with how flat the corners are and you are lifting a lot more. At Michigan, you are by yourself and can be near wide open with this package and the drag. So, behind people I think it is going to be a real unknown of what the car is going to do especially in a bigger pack of cars. At Indy, it definitely drafted up a lot better down the straightaways, but it was almost more of a negative effect once you got behind someone in the corner. If that’s the same kind of feel, I think Michigan will be a lot worse when it comes to that feeling.”
MIS Performance: "This weekend Kroger returns to the No. 47 and we've got Scott Products back on board as well," Allmendinger said. "We hope for a solid weekend. My best finish there is a pair of 11th-place finishes. When we were there in June, the car was pretty much loose. The race was shortened because of weather. So, we ended up 23rd."
MIS Package: “Michigan poses a new challenge,” crew chief Brian Burns said. “Indy and Michigan are such different tracks, so there is a little bit of an unknown even though it is the same package. Working with the RCR alliance and doing more research and development on the new package will help us unload better there.”
Coming down the pipeline: “The great thing is the pipeline of race cars that we have through the rest of the year, for the most part, is pretty new cars," Allmendinger said. "Pocono (Raceway) was a brand new car. I think this week at Michigan is going to be a brand new car."
Still a chance: “We’ve got a new car for Michigan and in a few weeks we will also have a new car for Darlington (Raceway),” Burns said. “We are going to attack each weekend like we did at Watkins Glen International. We still feel like we have a shot to win before The Chase.”
Proud of team: "I am proud of the effort this group puts in every day," team owner Tad Geschickter said. "The preparation for Watkins Glen International was no exception. The heart of this team was shown not only by the laps we led, but also the tremendous charge that AJ made through the field after we had a part failure that relegated him to 36th position. He drove all the way back up near the top 10 before we had a fuel pressure issue. We will keep our focus and our goal is still to win a race this year and provide great value for our fans and sponsor partners."
Team meeting: “We all had a big meeting back at the shop Monday,” Burns said. “Times like this, your competitive nature can get the best of you and get you down. We have to put what happened at the last race away and prepare for the next weekend. We made everyone aware of how proud we were of them for getting the pole and running competitively. It’s just the gremlins that keep biting us this year. We had a top-five car during the race. If we hadn’t had problems, we know that at the end, AJ would have done anything in the closing laps.”
Sticking together: “We believe in ourselves even through the downs," Allmendinger said. "It’s one of those things that we know we have to stick together. Last year, I felt like our first year fully working together we were trying to figure out each other and trying to have that confidence in each other. Especially when it’s down, it's a struggle. This year even through our struggles, I think there have been some challenging times but, we all believe in each other and we all trust in each other as a team to know that we are all trying to go in the right direction. We just have to figure out how to get there and also shake our bad luck. Last year, I think we were all kind of trying to figure out even which direction we were going. Our first win together helped a lot and it’s made us believe in each other and trust each other. Even in the down times, we have stuck together a lot better and we have worked in the right direction. Whether it’s from Tad (Geschickter) all the way on down to everybody in our race shop, just that trust factor is way better. Even if the points don’t show it right now, we are a lot better race team than we were at this time last year.”
Career Starts: 249
Pole Awards: 4
First Start: 3/25/2007 Bristol
First Pole: 4/10/2010 Phoenix
Last Pole: 8/8/15 Watkins Glen
Best Start: 1 - 4/10/2010 Phoenix
Best Finish: 1 - 8/10/2014 Watkins Glen
Driver DOB: 12/16/1981
Hometown: San Jose, Calif.
Crew Chief: Brian Burns
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Thursday, August 13th
5:30 PM to 7:30 PM Kroger Store Appearance, 1315 East Main Street, Owosso, MI
Sunday, August 16th
JTG Daugherty Racing sponsor meet and greets