Jamie McMurray and crew chief Kevin Manion nearly put team co-owner Chip Ganassi into the record books at Charlotte Motor Speedway Sunday, falling just .737 seconds short of an historic double win in the Memorial Day Weekend’s two premier racing events the Coca-Cola 600 and Indianapolis 500. Following the Sprint Cup contest, Manion was named the NASCAR MOOG “Problem Solver of the Race” for the virtually flawless pit strategy that helped propel McMurray’s #1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet from 27th place at the start to a runner-up finish on Charlotte’s 1.5-mile quad-oval.
Sponsored by Federal-Mogul Corporation manufacturer of MOOG steering and suspension components, the MOOG Problem Solver Award is presented following each Sprint Cup event to the crew chief whose car posts the largest increase in average lap speed from the first half to the second half of the race while finishing on the lead lap. McMurray posted a race-high .514-second-per-lap improvement after starting the day in what he called an “8th- or 10th-place car.”
With the Earnhardt Ganassi Racing crew buzzing over the news that the Target Chip Ganassi car piloted by Dario Franchitti had won at Indy, McMurray and Manion maintained their focus on picking up track position throughout Sunday’s Sprint Cup race. Manion quickly identified the right setup for the Chevrolet’s MOOG-equipped chassis, enabling McMurray to crack the top 10 within the first 30 laps. Then it was simply a matter of hoping for long green-flag runs, where the #1 car’s combination of exceptional power and precise steering and handling response gave it a decided advantage over most of the field.
“Kevin did a really good job,” McMurray said. “As the race went on we just kept getting faster and faster. We had the best car, I thought, at the end.”
“Kevin and Jamie came up with a chassis setup that simply overpowered nearly everyone else,” said Federal-Mogul Motorsports Director Tim Nelson. “If they had a few more laps after the late caution, chances are they would have pulled off one of the most impressive wins of the year.”
MOOG chassis parts help deliver the consistent, precise steering and handling response needed to ensure success in NASCAR Sprint Cup competition. That’s why MOOG is the preferred chassis brand of crew chiefs and professional technicians. MOOG products are available through leading auto parts providers and vehicle service providers across North America.
The benefits of MOOG parts and other leading Federal-Mogul repair solutions are at the center of the company’s innovative new "Smart Choice" multi-brand campaign designed to reinforce the message that longer lasting, better performing premium replacement products are today’s best option for professionals and do-it-yourselfers.
For additional information regarding MOOG steering and suspension products, please visit the brand’s technician-focused www.moogproblemsolver.com website or contact your MOOG supplier. To learn more about the Federal-Mogul “Smart Choice” campaign, simply visit www.FMSmartChoice.com.