In an effort to further the chemistry of the No. 9 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race team, Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) announced today Kevin Manion has been assigned as the crew chief of that team with driver Sam Hornish, Jr.
Sam Hornish Jr. earned his first top-10 of the season in the Geico 500. He crossed under the checkers sixth.
Sam Hornish Jr. has a spotty record at best on restrictor-plate, superspeedways. In 16 attempts on this track type, he has failed to qualify twice, failed to finish four times, and finished off the lead lap 11 times.
Sam Hornish Jr. has shown steady improvement during the past three weeks after suffering through an engine related problem at Auto Club. Each event that followed has been better than the one that preceded it.
Sam Hornish Jr. was forced to take a provisional starting position to make the Food City 500. He will roll off the grid 39th. This was the second time in the past three races he was forced to fall back on that rule. He finished 32nd two weeks ago at Martinsville after starting 38th.
Sam Hornish Jr. has finished in the top 20 in his last three Texas starts. He attended both 2010 races and finished 19th in the spring and 18th in the fall. He started only one event since then and finished 17th in fall 2012.
Richard Petty Motorsports and Biagi-DenBeste Racing announced today that they will continue their partnership with Sam Hornish Jr. in the Biagi-DenBeste No. 98 Ford Mustang in five NASCAR XFINITY Series races this season. Hornish drove for the team in the XFINITY Series earlier this season.
Sam Hornish Jr. has incurred the most penalties from NASCAR in the first six races of the 2015 season. He has been nailed for various infractions 14 times, which averages to more than two per event.
Sam Hornish Jr. has made eight previous starts at Martinsville, but his most recent effort came in fall 2012. He finished 13th in a third Penske Racing entry.
For the first time since the 2013 Brickyard 400, all 43 NASCAR Sprint Cup cars were running at the end of the Auto Club 400.
Sam Hornish Jr. enters the weekend with a four-race, top-20 streak at Auto Club that includes results for Roger Penske and Joe Gibbs.
Last week, Sam Hornish Jr. qualified eighth and finished 21st at Atlanta. This week, he failed to advance to the second round of time trials and qualified only 29th; he hopes that is an omen for a good result at Vegas.
Sam Hornish Jr. may be closing in on a top-10 finish at Atlanta. His last start on this track ended in an 11th with Roger Penske in 2012.
Sam Hornish Jr.’s last Daytona start came in 2012 when he substituted for the recently suspended AJ Allmendinger. He started that race at the back of the pack due to the driver change and sustained crash damage before finishing 33rd.