Open Team Test Set For Today at AMS, Free Admission With A Sunday Grandstand Ticket
After an off-season testing ban was imposed, Atlanta Motor Speedway will be the site of the season's first open team test Thursday from 1 to 5 p.m. With a new rules package affecting both downforce and horsepower, Thursday's test session will be a critical opportunity for teams to get a feel for the new aero package. Spectator admission is free with a Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 grandstand ticket.
Here's what drivers, crew chiefs and NASCAR officials had to say about Thursday's test:
"I don't think we know what to expect until we get there. It'll be the first time we've really had the opportunity to get those cars in that configuration. I think the crew chiefs probably have a better idea than the drivers do at this point, but they'll be prepared and ready to go."
- Tony Stewart
"Our focus is going to be taking our primary car, taking the additional track time and just really trying to fine tune for that weekend. It's not like we're not going to be testing through the season, but at least the open day in Atlanta, I'm glad they did that to let us get adjusted to the horsepower change and aerodynamic change."
- Trent Owens, crew chief for Aric Almirola
"Well, we don't know. There's a lot of questions that we'll be answering in Atlanta."
- Michael Waltrip
"Whenever we begin a season, if there has been a significant rule change, for the first race, we're going to allow a testing session so they can get familiar with the car. In this particular case, in Atlanta, that's our first intermedia track (of the 2015 season). We've got some rule changes coming, so it will be very, very important. We want to give everybody an opportunity."
- Gene Stefanyshyn, NASCAR Senior VP, Competition and Racing Development
$24-off Jeff Gordon ticket special available
Jeff Gordon began his Sprint Cup Series career at Atlanta Motor Speedway in 1992. To commemorate Gordon and his career history at AMS, fans can save $24 off tickets in the Upper Winners Grandstand, Upper Champions Grandstand or Upper Earnhardt Grandstand for Sunday's Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500. Also, fans who renew 2016 event tickets this weekend will be invited to attend a special event with Gordon during next year's race weekend.
7 Georgia drivers racing at Atlanta this weekend
Seven drivers who hail from Georgia will drive in at least one of this weekend's three NASCAR races. Those include Chase Elliott (Dawsonville), John Wes Townley (Watkinsville), Garrett Smithley (Peachtree City), Reed Sorenson (Peachtree City), David Ragan (Unadilla), Chris Cockrum (Conyers) and Ryan Sieg (Tucker). While not originally from Georgia, last week's Daytona 500 winner, Joey Logano, moved with his family to the Atlanta area from Connecticut when he was 10 years old to pursue a professional racing career. Logano spent six of his formative years racing Legends and Bandolero cars at Atlanta Motor Speedway's "Thunder Ring" and has many close Georgia ties.
Ride of a Lifetime with Jeff Gordon
Bidding is open for a lucky fan to have one last chance to ride in the pre-race parade lap with Jeff Gordon at Atlanta Motor Speedway, where it all started for the legendary NASCAR champion. The winner will join Jeff as he embarks on his mission for a 6th career win at Atlanta and a 5th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship. Bidding is available now at www.SCCauctions.com.
Past Atlanta winners look to repeat
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is looking for his second Sprint Cup Series win at AMS after winning in 2004.
Carl Edwards has three Sprint Cup Series wins at AMS, including both races in 2005, and two XFINITY Series wins for good measure.
Jeff Gordon is a five-time Sprint Cup Series race winner at AMS and a one-time XFINITY Series race winner.
Kevin Harvick won his first-career Sprint Cup Series victory at AMS in 2001 in a photo finish and has added three XFINITY Series wins, including the past two in 2013 and 2014.
Jimmie Johnson has three Sprint Cup Series wins at AMS, including a sweep of both 2007 races.
Kasey Kahne is a three-time Sprint Cup Series race winner at AMS and is the defending 2014 race winner.
Tony Stewart has won Sprint Cup Series races at Atlanta in 2002, 2006 and 2010.
Atlanta Motor Speedway app now available
Smartphone and tablet users with an Apple or Android device can now download the all-new Atlanta Motor Speedway app for free. The app provides event schedules, maps and other important race weekend information. App users will receive a 10 percent discount at the AMS gift shop between Feb. 27 and March 2. A limited-time 15 percent discount will be available for app users on Saturday, Feb. 28 between the hours of 10 a.m. and noon.
For more information about Atlanta Motor Speedway's NASCAR weekend or to purchase tickets, call the AMS ticket office at (770) 946-4211, (877) 9-AMS-TIX or visit http://www.atlantamotorspeedway.com.