Ryan Preece NASCAR Cup Series Brickyard Preview

(Press release from Stewart-Haas Racing)

Ryan Preece (Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

● Event: Verizon 200 at the Brickyard (Round 24 of 36)● Time/Date: 2:30 p.m. EDT on Sunday, Aug. 13
 Location: Indianapolis Motor Speedway
 Layout: 2.439-mile, 14-turn road course
● Laps/Miles: 82 laps / 200 miles
● Stage Lengths: Stage 1: 15 laps / Stage 2: 20 laps / Final Stage: 47 laps
● TV/Radio: NBC / IMS Radio Network / SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

● Road-Course Sunday: Ryan Preece and the No. 41 Purdue University Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) are heading to the 2.439-mile, 14-turn Indianapolis Motor Speedway road-course layout for Sunday’s Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at 2:30 EDT. Coverage will be live on NBC, the IMS Radio Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

● By The Numbers: Sunday’s race will mark Preece’s second start on the Indianapolis road course. His first race on the circuit came in 2021 for JTG-Daugherty Racing. He started 30th and was credited with a 35th-place finish after being involved in an incident on lap 77. In the season’s first road-course race March 26 at Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin, Texas, Preece started 26th and was vying for a solid top-10 finish before being spun during the final restart, leaving him with a 32nd-place finish. In the season’s second road-course race June 11 at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway, Preece started 22nd and finished 13th. Preece competed in the ARCA Menards West race at Sonoma to gain extra seat time on the road course. He started on the pole and won the race after leading 50 laps. When the series conducted its first-ever street race July 2 in downtown Chicago, Preece started 28th and finished 15th. The No. 41 team has shown improvements on road courses and hope that will continue this weekend in Indianapolis.

● About Purdue University in Indianapolis: With programs available in engineering, computer science and technology, Purdue University in Indianapolis aims to maintain the largest undergraduate STEM Enrollment in the United States. This includes the school’s much-heralded motorsports engineering program. Enrollment in Purdue University in Indianapolis’s motorsports engineering program places students in the heart of the action with top industry professionals for professors. Notably, Purdue University alum Angela Ashmore is believed to be the first woman to win the Indianapolis 500 as a member of the winning car’s crew. Ashmore served as the assistant race engineer for Marcus Ericsson when the team won the 106th running of “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” Purdue University was recently named one of the World’s 20 Most Innovative Companies by Fast Company magazine, the only university on the list, for freezing tuition for an unprecedented 12th year in a row and combatting the nation’s semiconductor shortage by training engineers and researchers with excellence at scale. Learn more at stories.purdue.edu.

● Motorsports Engineer at Purdue University in Indianapolis: The only ABET-accredited undergraduate motorsports engineering program in the country is found at Purdue University in Indianapolis. The program began in 2008 and was accredited in 2016. It welcomed a record 110-member freshman class last fall. The program is driving motorsports engineering forward and fueling the entire industry from the “Racing Capital of the World.” Purdue-Indy had students or graduates in 32 of the 33-car field in the 2022 Indianapolis 500. The Purdue School of Engineering & Technology and the program’s automotive lab in the Stutz Building are located fewer than 5 miles from the racetrack. Graduates from the Purdue-Indy motorsports engineering program have moved on to IndyCar, IMSA and NHRA. They’ve also ventured into the motorsports manufacturing world at companies like Allison Transmissions, Dallara (USA), and Cummins. The program recruits nationally, with more out-of-state than in-state students enrolled.

● Last Weekend: Last weekend on the 2-mile oval at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Preece and the No. 41 team qualified 29th on Saturday. In the opening stage of the race that began on Sunday, Preece felt his car was “pretty good, but a little bit too tight.” Once the team loosened it up, his Ford Mustang wasn’t far from where he wanted it to be, but the weather delayed the remainder of the race until Monday afternoon. Once the race returned to green, Preece told his team the car just felt completely different. He battled hard all day and had a right-rear tire go down, leading to an unscheduled pit stop. He finished the race 22nd.

 Where He Stands: Preece heads to Indianapolis 25th in the driver standings with 397 points.

● Baby Girl Preece: Preece and his wife Heather welcomed their first child at 5:30 a.m. EDT Monday. Rebecca Marie Preece was 6 pounds, 10 ounces and 20 inches long. Mom and baby are both healthy and the new parents couldn’t be more excited to welcome Rebecca, the newest member of the SHR family.

● VIP Race Day Experience: RaceChoice, a proud partner of Preece, has launched its second special racing experience giveaway for fans this season. Fans can enter through Sept. 30. The winner will receive airfare and a two-night stay in Phoenix for the season finale race weekend. RaceChoice will also give the winners two pit passes for the race and a meet-and-greet with Preece, driver of the No. 41 SHR Ford Mustang. Click here for more information.

What Ryan Is Saying:

It seems like Indianapolis Motor Speedway is always really special for drivers because of its history. What are you most looking forward to this weekend?
“For me, I enjoy the road courses and I think they’re always another opportunity to win – for sure. I’ve always been a huge fan of the Brickyard and the oval, but I think the road racing can definitely kind of put a variable in there that maybe we can squeeze one out. But it’s really just a special place, there’s so much history there on the oval, it’s special to be able to look back and say you’ve raced at a track like Indy. I think there’s some added confidence, too, knowing that I’ve had some decent finishes at road courses, and they’re so unpredictable.”

You won the ARCA Menards Series West race at Sonoma Raceway earlier this season and then finished in the top 15 at Sonoma and the Chicago Street Course in the Cup Series. Does that give you any extra confidence?
“Yeah, I mean, it’s nice to know that I can compete on the road courses and run up front and win. I was never a road-course guy, so these types of tracks and those races on the schedule are ones that we’ve really emphasized and worked on. Now that we’re a few road races in, I am definitely a bit more confident at those tracks, more now than I was before. I’m excited to get there and get a feel for the track and my car during practice so we can qualify well and get a good starting position. These races are all about track position. If you start back in the field, it’s going to be really tough to move to the front and stay out of trouble, so we want to be fast right when we unload and show the rest of the field that we’re there, and there to win.”

Your team just announced a partnership with Purdue University at Indianapolis for this weekend. Purdue has been heavily involved in Indianapolis Motor Speedway for a long time. What’s it like having the school on your No. 41 Ford Mustang this weekend?
“It’s an honor to represent Purdue University in Indianapolis this weekend at the Brickyard. Indy is filled with history and prestige, and competing there is truly special. To have the gold-and-black colors of the Boilermakers on my car just adds to that prestige, as I’ve come to understand Purdue’s own history at Indianapolis. I’m impressed by the program Purdue University has for students looking to make a career in motorsports. Creative, hard-working people can thrive in racing. Knowledge is power, and the more you know, the better you are. To be able to showcase Purdue’s comprehensive urban campus in Indianapolis makes me proud.”

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