FORD PERFORMANCE NASCAR: MID-OHIO/ATLANTA 2 NOTES
Atlanta Motor Speedway will host the NASCAR XFINITY and NASCAR Cup Series this weekend for the second time in 2022 while the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races in Mid-Ohio for the first time. Here’s a look at where the Ford drivers stand in the three series.
This week’s schedule:
Saturday, July 9 – NASCAR Camping World Truck Series @ Mid-Ohio, 1:30 p.m. (FS1)
Saturday, July 9 – NASCAR XFINITY Series @ Atlanta, 5 p.m. (USA)
Sunday, July 10 – NASCAR Cup Series @ Atlanta, 3 p.m. (USA)
FORD IN THE NASCAR CUP SERIES AT AMS
- Ford has 35 all-time NASCAR Cup Series wins at AMS.
- Brad Keselowski, Kevin Harvick and Ryan Blaney have wins for Ford at the track.
- Georgia native Bill Elliott is Ford’s all-time leader at AMS with five wins.
FORD IN THE NASCAR XFINITY SERIES AT AMS
- Ford has 10 NASCAR XFINITY Series wins at AMS, all but two by RFK Racing.
- Kevin Harvick leads all drivers with five series wins.
- Mark Martin has the most Ford wins with three while Jeff Burton and Carl Edwards have two each.
FORD IN THE CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES IN MID-OHIO
- This weekend marks the series’ inaugural event in Mid-Ohio.
BLANEY EYEING REGULAR SEASON CHAMPIONSHIP
Ryan Blaney may still be looking for his first points win of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season, but he’s in the thick of the regular-season championship battle with just eight races remaining. The winner of this year’s All-Star Race currently sits second in the standings, 33 points behind leader Chase Elliott heading into Sunday’s race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Blaney, who had a three-straight top-10 ranking streak after an 11e-place raced at Road America, is tied for the most stage wins of any driver with five.
THE TOP 10 RUNS BECOME THE STANDARD
Four Ford drivers have competed in a variety of top 10 finishes over the past few months, led by Michael McDowell, whose eighth-place finish at Road America marked his sixth of the last 10 races. Kevin Harvick, who is currently outside the playoffs, has eliminated the top 10 at a pace of seven over the last nine while Chris Buescher has posted a second at Sonoma and a sixth at Road America in his last three starts. Currently, Austin Cindric has a three-straight top-10 streak after finishing fifth at Sonoma and seventh over the past two weeks at Nashville and Road America.
HERBST CLIMBING TO THE NXS RANKING
Riley Herbst has steadily moved up the NASCAR XFINITY Series standings, entering this weekend’s race at Atlanta Motor Speedway in ninth place. Herbst had been as low as 12e after the Circuit of the Americas road race, but in the 10 races since then he has recorded eight top 10 finishes, including three top five finishes. As a result, he has a 136-point cushion over the cut line with 10 runs remaining in the regular season before the 12-driver playoff field is set.
SMITH TAKES THE TOP POINTS OF THE TRUCK SERIES
Zane Smith’s second-place finish two weeks ago at the Nashville Superspeedway moved him into the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points lead with just two races remaining in the regular season. As the Front Row Motorsports driver heads to Mid-Ohio for Saturday’s inaugural race, Smith holds a 21-point lead over second place John Hunter Nemechek and leads all drivers in the top 10 (12), top 5 ( 8), wins (3) and laps led (339).
NASCAR CUP SERIES HIGHLIGHTS IN ATLANTA
KESELOWSKI GETS FIRST CUP VICTORY FOR MUSTANG
Brad Keselowski gave Mustang its first NASCAR Cup Series win by fending off Martin Truex Jr. at the finish to win the Folds of Honor 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway in 2019. Keselowski, who had been battling illness all weekend and had Austin Cindric standing by in case he needed relief, led the last 33 laps to post his 28e career victory. In all, Ford led 177 of the 325 laps and won for the third straight year at the 1.5-mile track.
HARVICK SWEEP WEEKEND 2018
Kevin Harvick led eight times for a record 181 laps winning the Fold’s of Honor 500 in 2018 and completing a sweep of the NASCAR Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY races. After winning all three stages the day before in his Ford Mustang, Harvick won the first stage of the Cup race and then led the final 25 laps to post his 38e career win and third with Ford. Brad Keselowski was second and Clint Bowyer third to give Ford a 1-2-3 sweep. Ford dominated from start to finish as four drivers combined to lead 272 out of 325 laps. Harvick became the first Ford driver to sweep a Cup/XFINITY weekend since Joey Logano did it in 2015 at Watkins Glen International.
Morgan Shepherd captured Ford’s 400e series victory in 1993 when snow delayed the Motorcraft Quality Parts 500 for nearly a week. The original race date was Sunday, March 14, 1992, but a blizzard that would eventually be called the “Storm of the Century” hit the Atlanta area with 6–8 inches of snow. An estimated 82,000 fans returned the following Saturday, where they were greeted by souvenir platforms sporting t-shirts proclaiming “I survived the Atlanta Blizzard 500”. When the race started, Mark Martin had the dominant car as he led 140 of the first 225 laps, but engine problems put him out of the race and Shepherd took the opportunity to stretch his fuel consumption until the end of the race. finish, leading the last 12 laps and winning by a whopping 23.50 seconds. The win for Shepherd, who was 51 at the time, was his fourth and final victory in the NASCAR Cup Series.
Marvin Panch was the first driver to sweep both AMS races in a single season when he did so in 1965 with the Wood Brothers. Georgia native Bill Elliott had two season wins (1985 and 1992) and won five times in total while Carl Edwards recorded the first victory of his career on the tour in 2005 and tied it later that fall.
LORENZEN TURNS THE PITCH
Ford first went on the road to victory at Atlanta Motor Speedway in 1961 when NASCAR Hall of Famer Fred Lorenzen won the Festival 250 on July 9 while driving for Holman-Moody. He did it in a dominant manner as he circled the pitch as well. Lorenzen, who led 52 laps that day, beat runner-up Bob Welborn by one lap in his 1961 Ford. Richard Petty finished third that afternoon, but was three laps down. The victory served as the springboard for Lorenzen’s future success at AMS, which included becoming the first driver to win the Atlanta 500 three consecutive years (1962-63-64).
FORD ATLANTA NASCAR CUP SERIES WINNERS
1961 – Fred Lorenzen
1962 – Fred Lorenzen
1963 – Fred Lorenzen
1964 – Fred Lorenzen and Ned Jarrett
1965 – Marvin Panch (sweep)
1967 – Cale Yarborough and Dick Hutcherson
1968 – Lee Roy Yarbrough
1969 – Lee Roy Yarbrough
1975 – Buddy Baker
1978 – Bobby Allison
1981 – Neil Bonnett
1985 – Bill Elliott (sweep)
1987 – Ricky Rudd and Bill Elliott
1990 – Morgan Berger
1991 – Marc Martin
1992 – Bill Elliott (sweep)
1993 – Morgan Berger
1994 – Ernie Irvan and Mark Martin
1997 – Dale Jarrett
2002 – Kurt Busch
2005 – Carl Edwards (sweep)
2008 – Carl Edwards
2017 – Brad Keselowski
2018 – Kevin Harvick
2019 – Brad Keselowski
2020 – Kevin Harvick
2021 – Ryan Blaney (1)
FORD’S NASCAR XFINITY ATLANTA WINNERS
1992 – Jeff Gordon
1997 – Marc Martin
1998 – Marc Martin
2000 – Marc Martin
2004 – Matt Kenseth
2005 – Carl Edwards
2008 – Matt Kenseth
2011 – Carl Edwards
2012 – Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
2018 – Kevin Harvick
Ford Performance PR