David Ragan and Front Row Motorsports return to Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway this week looking to duplicate their wild win earned on a last-lap surge in May. With all eyes on the reigning Talladega champ, the driver will bring a brightly colored paint scheme promoting SaferCar.gov, a one-stop shop for vehicle safety established by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Not only will Sunday's Camping World RV Sales 500 be Ragan's return to the site of Front Row Motorsports' first victory, it will also be the 27-year-old driver's 250th career Sprint Cup start. In his eight-year Cup career, Ragan has two wins, 14 top-five and 33 top-10 finishes, and two poles. He has one victory, four top-five and six top-10 finishes at the 2.66-mile Talladega Superspeedway.
Comments from SaferCar.gov team driver David Ragan heading to Talladega:
"Talladega is a special place in our history from years past and obviously this year for getting that first win for Front Row Motorsports in a nice 1-2 finish for David Gilliland and myself. For me, I just try to watch some video and get a good feel for what my car can do and what it can't do. It's all about strategy. There are 25 or 30 cars that can win the race given the right decisions at the end of the 500-mile event.
"If we can stay in that lead pack all day, if I don't make any mistakes and if we have a little bit of luck, we can make the right moves again and hopefully shoot for another win. It's going to be a big race for the whole Front Row Motorsports organization going back to Talladega for a second time this year.
"On that last lap in May, I knew David (Gilliland) was there but I didn't really expect him to be able to push that hard for that long. It just worked out that he made the right decisions, he made the right moves, and we were able to keep our momentum the whole way around that long racetrack. The crazy thing is, you can take the lead going into Turn 1, but you've still got two more miles to go before you get back around. So, it's very crucial to make some good decisions the last couple of laps. Hopefully, we can be in contention to do that again. I feel confident that my spotter, Roman Pemberton, and I can do the right things in order to get another checkered flag.
"You'll have no problem spotting our No. 34 Ford Fusion on the track. We've got a bright-colored paint scheme promoting SaferCar.gov. It's a website established by NHTSA that promotes vehicle safety, provides crash-test ratings for the cars, information on recalls, child safety seats and lots of other things. It's a pretty big initiative that's close to my heart being an automotive dealer trying to put safe cars on the road. So, having the NHTSA with their safety message on our car is special. I encourage everyone to check out SaferCar.gov to learn a lot about their existing car or their next vehicle purchase."