STATESVILLE, N.C. (November 12, 2013) – David Ragan claims not to be superstitious, but you wouldn’t blame him if he slipped a rabbit’s foot into his pocket at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway this weekend. The driver of the No. 34 Taco Bell Ford has a three-week run of bad luck and needs to finish the season with a good run in the Sprint Cup Series finale on Sunday.
The No. 34 team will hit the 1.5-mile oval looking to rebound after three straight races with mechanical issues. The team expects to show they are better than those results in the Ford EcoBoost 400 Sunday in Florida. Ragan has six career starts at Homestead with a top finish of 10th (2007).
The Taco Bell Ford will carry a decal for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society this race weekend. The Society mobilizes people and resources to drive research for a cure and to address the challenges of everyone affected by this unpredictable disease affecting the central nervous system. For those seeking more information about MS and the program services offered, they can visit www.nationalMSsociety.org and join the MS movement.
Comments from Taco Bell team driver David Ragan heading to Homestead:
“Homestead is a tough track, just because of the progressive banking and that asphalt’s aged a lot. You run right up against the wall, and you kind of forget how important it is to find a high line that’s comfortable because it’s hard to pass on the bottom. As the track cools off, the high line stays fast.
“Going to these racetracks one time a year, it’s important to keep good notes and really pay attention on your practice days to what you have. Because it seems like the weekend goes by so fast, and then you don’t experience it again for another year. Miami is a tough track. But it’s the last one, so everybody is usually in a pretty good mood down there that weekend.
“We’ve had a solid season with our No. 34 Front Row Motorsports Ford. We’ve had a lot of highs, but we’ve also had some lows. We had more DNFs than what we wanted after being involved in a couple accidents that weren’t of our making and a couple of parts failures and engine failures more recently. We need to get those bad days a little bit better.
“We had some really strong runs at some of the racetracks. If we can improve on them a little bit, we’ll be in pretty good shape. Obviously, we did improve on some of our lead-lap finishes, and our qualifying start was a little better. So, we did make some gains, which were good. But we need to correct those bad days a little bit better because of the current points structure that we have. If you have multiple 35th- or 40th-place finishes, it really hurts you.
“We had a good season and had a lot of fun. Obviously, getting that win was a big day. We made a lot of friends with our new sponsors and partners. And we’re excited for the off-season and getting ready for next year to build on what we accomplished and strengthen those partnerships for next season.
“We’re carrying a decal for the MS Society on our car this week. Our team has a personal connection to multiple sclerosis and we wanted to draw some attention to it and raise awareness about the good work the Society is doing and encourage NASCAR fans to join the movement. And this week it hit even closer to home in our sport hearing about Trevor’s (Bayne) diagnosis. We hope everybody will go to nationalMSsociety.org and see how they can help.”