Ryan Preece NASCAR Cup Series Talladega Preview

Ryan Preece with the Talladega Nights inspired Wonder Bread car he will race this weekend (Photo: Courtesy of Stewart-Haas Racing)

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● Event: YellaWood 500 (Round 31 of 36)
● Time/Date: 2 p.m. EDT on Sunday, Oct. 1
● Location: Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway
● Layout: 2.66-mile oval
● Laps/Miles: 188 laps/500 miles
● Stage Lengths: Stage 1: 60 laps / Stage 2: 60 laps / Final Stage: 68 laps
● TV/Radio: NBC / MRN / SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

● Preece & Chase: Life will imitate art at the 2.66-mile Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway oval where Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) will field two Ford Mustangs in Wonder Bread and Old Spice liveries. The championship-winning NASCAR team co-owned by NASCAR Hall of Famer Tony Stewart and Haas Automation founder Gene Haas will have Ryan Preece behind the wheel of the No. 41 Wonder Bread Ford Mustang while Chase Briscoe drives the No. 14 Old Spice Ford Mustang.

● By the Numbers: Preece heads to Talladega on Sunday for the eighth time of his Cup Series career. His first start at the Alabama track was in 2019 for JTG-Daugherty Racing, when he started 30th and finished third. The finish marked his first and only top-five at the track. He has two top 10s, 14 laps led and has completed 99.4 percent of laps attempted there. In his previous Talladega outing this past April, Preece started 16th in his No. 41 Ford Mustang but was involved in an accident that took him out of the race on lap 189. Preece has one NASCAR Xfinity Series start at Talladega – in 2016. He ran for JD Motorsports and started 26th and finished 15th. Preece also has one NASCAR Truck Series appearance at the track that came in 2022 for David Gilliland Racing. He started 10th and finished fourth.

● Showing Speed: The SHR contingent of Preece, Briscoe, Aric Almirola and Kevin Harvick have shown speed at previous superspeedway races this season. Briscoe earned the pole position last month at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway with Almirola joining him on the front row. Preece and Harvick started in the fifth row, in ninth and 10th, putting all four SHR entries in a top-10 starting position.

● Welcome to the Team, Wonder Bread: Founded in 1921 in Indianapolis, Wonder Bread is named for the feeling that founder Elmer Cline experienced when watching a hot air balloon race. A century later, the brand is credited with the popularization of sliced bread and remains an iconic brand at barbeques, on store shelves, at picnics and in lunchboxes across the nation. Learn more at www.wonderbread.com.
● Last Weekend: Preece and the No. 41 team took on Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth last Sunday for 267 laps around the 1.5-mile oval. He qualified 25th and battled a loose racecar for a majority of the race on his way to a 23rd-place finish. 

● Where He Stands: Preece heads to Texas 25th in the driver standings with 498 points.

Ryan Preece (Photo: Courtesy Stewart-Haas Racing)

What Ryan Is Saying:

What’s your excitement level for this weekend at Talladega, having Wonder Bread on your car and representing such an iconic brand?
“This weekend is going to be so awesome. To have Wonder Bread on my car at Talladega is just such a cool opportunity. Not only is the brand one that is very well known in the NASCAR industry, it’s also well known among the fan base, too. The Talladega Nights movie is one that most people have seen and laughed at, and these really cool paint schemes will bring back memories. Getting to have my teammate Chase Briscoe in the Old Spice car just makes it all come together. Talladega is a historic track, and the movie is one that’s so popular and everyone embraces. There’s no better track to work with your teammates at than these superspeedways. We’re going to have so much fun this weekend and I hope we get the No. 41 Wonder Bread Ford Mustang to victory lane.”

How cool is it to have Wonder Bread back in NASCAR and on your car?
“It doesn’t get much cooler than this. The car looks awesome, the firesuit looks so cool. It’s exactly like it and Wonder Bread is fully embracing being back in the sport. I’m so excited to be a part of it and I know the fans are going to love it and want to get all they can out of it.”

Aside from the multicar accidents, these superspeedway-style tracks place a big emphasis on teamwork. Is there anything else you expect as a driver when you go to places like Talladega?
“The movie is meant to be funny and most of it is not very much like my real life at all, but the teamwork aspect is very real. That’s one of the biggest parts about these superspeedway races and it’s where you’re really thankful to have teammates and even manufacturer teammates in the field. We have had such fast racecars at superspeedways this season and I think we can be up there at the end. The races are long and tiring and you have to work with others. Sometimes you need that little push, sometimes you need to give one to someone else so you can stay up front. I’m looking forward to seeing what this weekend will be like for us, and hopefully Chase and I can have that moment. That would be really cool.”

You had a Talladega Nights-like moment at Daytona in August. Can you talk about that a little bit?
“Yeah, I mean all of us drivers know the dangers of this sport, but it’s what we do and it’s what we love. Daytona was one of those situations and we, as drivers, know it’s a bigger possibility at the superspeedways. But I’m very lucky and, aside from some bruised eyes, I was completely fine. When you are in the air like that, it just gets really quiet, and everything is happening so fast. You’re just flipping through the air and, until that ride stops, all you’re thinking about is trying to contain yourself. You tense up and you hope that you’re going to be OK, and obviously I am, and I was. You know it’s a possibility but never really think it’s going to be you, and we watch these movies and think they’re not realistic and could never happen, and then you go through it.”

RaceDayCT Poll: Who Has The Best Chance To Get Their First Whelen Modified Tour Win At North Wilkesboro


  1. It would be great if Will Ferrell showed up.

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