Wednesday, August 1, 2007

ESPN Analyst Andy Petree on Pocono Raceway

Q - What makes Pocono Raceway such a difficult track for drivers and race teams?

Petree - "That track is the most unique track on the circuit because it has three distinct turns. You've got a real tight turn on one end, a real broad turn on the other, and you've got this huge, long straightaway. You've got all these factors that come into play, and from a crew chief's standpoint there are a lot of things you can play with.

"The brakes are going to be a big issue at Pocono. You're going so fast down that front straightaway, and you've got to slow down to make that Turn 1. You're probably going 200 mph, and that's a lot of speed to bleed off. You used to do it by downshifting and using your brakes, and they had big spoilers for a lot of drag on the aero. Now they've got tiny spoilers, and they can't downshift anymore. The only way to slow the cars down now is with the brakes, and they are really being pushed to the limit."


Q - What should viewers watch for at Pocono?

Petree - "Watching them come down that front straightaway, fanning out sometimes four- or five-wide. It's incredible how wide that front straightaway is, and watching those guys using the draft and jockeying for position trying to gain an advantage is really exciting to see."

NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Action live on ESPN from Pocono Raceway presented by Rush Hour 3

ESPN's coverage from Pocono Raceway will include live coverage of NASCAR NEXTEL Cup qualifying at 3:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 3, and Happy Hour final practice at 11 a.m. Saturday. Two-time NASCAR champion crew chief Andy Petree will work in the ESPN booth for the telecasts, joined by Rusty Wallace, ESPN's lead auto racing analyst and the 1989 NASCAR Cup Series champion. Dr. Jerry Punch will handle play-by-play. Pit reporters will be Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Mike Massaro and Shannon Spake. Two-time NASCAR champion crew chief Tim Brewer will report from the ESPN DISH Tech Center with the ESPN Chevy Cutaway Car. ESPN's Suzy Kolber will host NASCAR Countdown at Pocono, joined by analyst Brad Daugherty in the ESPN Pit Studio.


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