Ryan Preece Bristol Dirt Race Cup Series Preview

(Press release from Stewart-Haas Racing)

● Event: Food City Dirt Race (Round 8 of 36)

● Time/Date: 7 p.m. EDT on Sunday, April 9

● Location: Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway 

● Layout: .533-mile, high-banked, dirt oval

● Laps/Miles: 250 laps / 133.25 miles

● Stage Lengths: Stage 1: 75 laps / Stage 2: 75 laps / Final Stage: 100 laps

● TV/Radio: FOX / PRN / SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Notes Of Interest:

● Ryan Preece is ready to go dirt racing. The driver of the No. 41 United Rentals Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) will make his second NASCAR Cup Series start on the dirt surface at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway on Sunday evening. His first dirt race at the track was in the inaugural event in 2021 for JTG Daugherty Racing. He started 22nd and finished 18th. He returns to the track for his first dirt start with SHR.

● Although The Last Great Colosseum has been transformed into a high-banked, dirt oval for this weekend’s events, Preece has seen success on the track’s concrete surface in NASCAR’s Cup Series and Xfinity Series. He has five Cup Series starts at the track with a best finish of ninth in 2020. In three Xfinity Series starts, Preece has one win for Joe Gibbs Racing in 2018, and ran both 2016 Bristol races for JD Motorsports, finishing 19th and 15th, respectively. In the Xfinity Series, he has an average start there of 17.0 and an average finish of 11.7.

● Seven races into this season, Preece is 28th in the driver standings with 88 points.

● Last weekend, Preece returned to his short-track roots at Richmond (Va.) Raceway, where he won a 2021 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour event. Cup Series practice and qualifying were canceled last weekend due to rain, and the lineup was set per the NASCAR rule book. Preece started 33rd and finished 18th.

● The previous weekend, Preece and his Cup Series competitors took part in their first road-course race of the season at Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin, Texas. It marked the series’ third visit to the 3.426-mile, 20-turn circuit. Preece started 26th for his second COTA appearance and finished 36th. He had a promising start as he rallied for a 10th-place finish in Stage 1. But he was ultimately caught up in a multicar accident in the closing laps of the race.

● Preece concluded the 2023 West Coast swing with his best points-paying finish of the season – 12th – at Phoenix Raceway on March 12. He followed that with a 28th-place result in his fifth Cup Series start at Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 19.

● At the season’s second event at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California, Preece was a victim of circumstance, getting caught up in a multicar accident on a lap-88 restart and ultimately finishing 33rd. The following weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, he battled a tight racecar all day and was credited with a 23rd-place finish.

● Preece opened the 2023 season with a strong showing in the 65th running of the Daytona 500. He and the No. 41 Ford Mustang qualified 20th and logged the best 10-consecutive-lap average in final practice. On race day, Preece finished second in Stage 1 before getting caught up in a multicar accident on lap 181. He was unable to return to the race and finished 36th.

● United Rentals, Inc. (NYSE: URI), the largest equipment rental company in the world, is serving as the primary sponsor of Ryan Preece and the No. 41 team of Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) for select NASCAR Cup Series races in 2023. The partnership began with the non-points Busch Light Clash at The Coliseum, Feb. 4-5 in Los Angeles. United Rentals has an integrated network of 1,449 rental locations in North America, 13 in Europe, 27 in Australia and 19 in New Zealand. In North America, the company operates in 49 states and every Canadian province. The company’s approximately 24,700 employees serve construction and industrial customers, utilities, municipalities, homeowners and others. The company offers approximately 4,700 classes of equipment for rent with a total original cost of $19.3 billion. United Rentals is a member of the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, the Barron’s 400 Index and the Russell 3000 Index®. The company is headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut. Additional information about United Rentals is available at UnitedRentals.com.

● Win a trip to the 2023 Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway and meet Ryan Preece! RaceChoice.com, a proud partner of Preece, has launched a giveaway for fans. The winner will receive airfare and a two-night stay in Daytona Beach. RaceChoice.com will also give the winners two pit passes for the Coke Zero Sugar 400 on Saturday, August 26 at 7 p.m. ET, preceded by a meet-and-greet with Preece, driver of the No. 41 SHR Ford Mustang. Visit https://racechoice.com/2023-daytona-giveaway/for more information.

Ryan Preece (Photo: Stewart-Haas Racing)

What Ryan Is Saying:

Tell me a little about your dirt racing background. You were an asphalt guy growing up. How much dirt experience do you have?

“The only dirt racing background I have is Bristol dirt in a Cup car in 2021, and probably about half a season in a 270 micro when I was about 13 years old. So, not a lot of dirt experience at all. I guess that makes this weekend fun because it’s really different and there’s excitement around different things.”

Can you compare racing on dirt at Bristol to running at any other track on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule?

“Nothing really compares. I don’t think I have anything to compare the dirt at Bristol to. It’s so different than anything else we do and it’s nothing like what I grew up doing, either. I don’t think any asphalt experience is going to translate to Bristol dirt. But I like trying new things and I’m looking forward to it. My team isn’t preparing any differently than how we’ve been preparing all season. We know what we have to do, and we know what’s at stake. Like I said before, we’re on offense right now. Just because we’re at a track that looks different than all the others we go to doesn’t change that. We’ll be as prepared as we can be and use the practice sessions to get a gauge on where our car is at. From there, we’re looking to qualify well and hopefully will be there at the end of the night on Sunday.”

You got a solid top-20 last weekend at Richmond, although you said you felt like you had a top-10 car. Does that finish boost your confidence?

“We had a great car in Richmond and that was without practice and qualifying. Richmond is my kind of track, and I knew we’d be really strong there. My guys knew it, too. The pit strategy and tire strategy really came into play at the end, and we only had scuffs when that last caution came out, so we were stuck with what we had. Our team definitely deserved a top-10, top-15 finish but we’ll still take 18th considering how the previous weeks have been. We’re moving in the right direction. We just have to keep doing what we’re doing, and the results will come.”


  1. Well, that answered 1 thing for me. I had thought he had put on stickers on the last caution at richmond. I did not realize they were scuffs. Plenty of talk in the announcing booth about scuffs put on truex car. Never heard a peep on preece and scuffs, but i could have missed it. In the other thread I bemoaned the fact of his 18th place finish when I thought he would finish at least 12th. I guess I can see why now.

  2. Scuffs are definitely not what you want in the closing laps. At least he finished all the laps, it’s a start. Don’t expect much at Bristol on the dirt, but have to wait and see. Hope he’s able to finish good.

  3. Fox didn’t show the pit stops that were made on the lap 45 caution when the 11 wrecked the 15. Larry Mac said it was 12 cars that pitted during the broadcast. I know the 19, 41 and 99 used an extra set at that point. Those three were out of tires at the end and were on scuffs.

Leave a Reply

Copyright 2018 E-Media Sports

Website Designed by Thirty Marketing