Wise Likens Darlington to Sprint Cars on Dirt

STATESVILLE, N.C. (May 8, 2013) – Josh Wise flashes back to his sprint car days when he races at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway. The style of racing on the 1.366-mile oval, where cars are pushed right up against the wall, reminds him of sliding around on the dirt in his USAC championship years.

The No. 35 MDS Transport Ford team heads to Darlington for Saturday night’s historic Southern 500 after notching a 19th-place finish in last week’s race at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeeday, in which teammates David Ragan and David Gilliland finished first and second. The top-20 finish was Wise’s best result of the 2013 season and his best-ever finish at the superspeedway.

Comments from MDS Transport team driver Josh Wise heading to Darlington:

“I love Darlington. It’s so cool because it’s truly different. Even just looking at it, you can see it’s different on both ends. You run right up by the wall, which is really cool. It reminds me of running a sprint car up on the dirt back in the old days when you’re right up against the fence, and it’s just like that at Darlington. It’s just a fun, fast track, and the sensation of speed there is really cool.

“It can be difficult, though. Last spring was my first time there in the Cup car. We were fortunate, and we got up to speed pretty quick. The trickiest part of the track, I think, is the entries to the corners because you’re carrying different amounts of speed into Turn 3 versus Turn 1, and the radius of each corner is different. So that was the trick for me – just learning to gauge my speed into the corner versus how good I got off the previous corner.

“I’m so happy for this team, with Front Row Motorsports getting its first win last weekend at Talladega. Our car wasn’t quite as good our teammates – we had a couple issues toward the end of the race – but we still came home with a top-20 finish with the MDS Ford, which is pretty good. There were a lot of busted up cars in that infield last week, and we brought home three clean cars, which is the first time we’ve ever done that. It was a huge day overall, and we all look forward to getting the next one.”