Max Papis climbed behind the wheel of the No. 33 Menards Chevrolet Impala for the Bucyrus 200 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis. Papis qualified on the outside pole for the 50-lap event, the first of three road course races for the NASCAR Nationwide Series this season, but a late-race accident relegated the team to a disappointing 23rd-place finish.
The green flag waved Saturday afternoon sending the 43-car field roaring into the first of 14 turns along the course. In the opening laps, Papis settled into the third position and relayed to his Kevin Harvick Inc. (KHI) crew that his Menards Chevrolet had been tight from the start.
The first caution of the day on lap six provided the No. 33 team an opportunity for adjustments. Crew chief David Hyder called for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment to improve the handling of the Chevrolet.
Papis took the lap 10 restart from the eighth position but was able to quickly advance to the fourth position before the field came across the frontstretch on lap 11.
NASCAR called the second full-course caution on lap 21 with Papis running in the second position. As the field slowed and made their way through the turns towards the front of the course, the Italian-born driver radioed to his team that the Menards Chevrolet did not have a lot of grip. He also said that the No. 33 seemed to become tight in the center of the turns on the long runs, and more tight turning left than right. Hyder brought Papis to pit road for four tires, fuel and an additional chassis adjustment to help the tight-handling issues.
As Papis wheeled the No. 33 off pit road, NASCAR relayed that he would have to start from the tail end of the longest line as a penalty for driving through more than three pit stalls before entering his own stall. The KHI team remained positive and when the race returned to green-flag conditions on lap 25, Papis powered the Chevrolet through the field charging from 23rd to the 12th position by lap 27.
Just as the driver reached the 12th position the third caution flag waved. Papis relayed to Hyder that the car was much better than before and that he was very happy with the adjustments the team had made on the previous stop. Given the driver’s satisfaction with the car, the team opted to remain on track restarting in the 11th position on lap 30.
Papis continued to make his way to front of the field and was running in the eighth position as green-flag pit stops began with less than 20 laps to go in the event. On lap 34, the No. 33 team signaled for Papis to come to pit road for a fuel-only stop.
Back on track, the No. 33 Menards Chevrolet moved ahead one position at a time. With four laps remaining to the end, Papis was running in the fourth position when the vehicle in front of him spun off the course bringing out the fourth caution. The No. 33 avoided any contact and stayed off of pit road for the first attempt at the green-white-checkered finish.
NASCAR waved the green flag on lap 50 and Papis found himself in a tight battle with the No. 22 car for the fourth position. In the middle of the four-mile course, the No. 22 car made contact with the No. 33 machine sending it into the gravel and into the outside wall, bringing out the fifth full-course caution of the day and setting up a second attempt at a green-white-checkered finish.
Track safety crews towed the Menards Chevrolet out of the gravel, and Papis was able to drive to pit road where the KHI team worked quickly to made sufficient repairs in order to send the driver back on the course and finish the race. The race returned to green only to see the caution flag wave before the field could reach the white flag. Out of green-white-checkered attempts, the race concluded under yellow with Papis running in the 23rd position.
The No. 33 KHI team heads to Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway for the second time this season. Clint Bowyer will return to the driver’s seat for the NASCAR Nationwide Series 17th race on Friday night. Bowyer and the KHI team collected a second-place finish at Daytona in February after starting from the pole. Watch the action live on ESPN at 7:30 p.m. ET.
No. 33 Menards Chevrolet Impala
NASCAR Nationwide Series Race 16 of 34 – Road America
PAPIS ON BOARD: Max Papis teams up with Kevin Harvick Inc. (KHI) for the second time in his NASCAR career this weekend behind the wheel of the No. 33 Menards Chevrolet Impala for the Bucyrus 200 at Road America. Papis made his first start with the team at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal last season in the No. 33 Rheem Chevrolet. He qualified for the event in the ninth position and finished second.
ROAD COURSE RACING: Road America will be the first of three road course races for the NASCAR Nationwide Series this season. The Elkhart Lake, Wis., track made its debut on the series’ schedule last season. KHI competed in the inaugural event with four-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion Ron Hornaday in the No. 33 Chevrolet. The team started from the 12th position and finished 11th.
“ROOKIE VETERAN” AT ROAD AMERICA: While this Saturday’s event will mark Papis’ first Nationwide Series start at Road America, it will not be his first time to compete at the 14-turn road course. The Italian-born driver competed in the Champ Car Series for eight seasons collecting several podium finishes at Road America.
PREVIOUS RACE RECAP: Paul Menard joined KHI for the third time this season for the Alliance Truck Parts 250 at Michigan International Speedway. Menard qualified the No. 33 Menards Chevrolet on the pole, his third-career Nationwide Series pole and the team’s second pole award in 15 races, and brought home a solid fourth-place finish. The No. 33 team is fifth in Owner’s Point standings, 41 points from the lead with 19 events remaining in the season.
CHASSIS HISTORY: The No. 33 Menards team has prepared chassis No. 075 for this weekend’s event at Road America. This chassis, new to KHI’s inventory this season, was tested at Virginia International Raceway in May with Papis.
THOUGHTS FROM THE DRIVER: MAX PAPIS
What are your thoughts going into this weekend at Road America?
“I am really looking forward to racing this weekend at Road America. This will be my first NASCAR race there so I will be considered a rookie, but it will not be my first race at the track. I spent a lot of time at Road America and in the Milwaukee and Green Bay area when I raced in the Champ Car Series. It is a great track and the area is beautiful. They have awesome fans. I can’t wait to get there and race.
“I am looking forward to joining the KHI team this weekend. I am going there with one goal: be the first Italian in the modern era to win a NASCAR race. I know in this No. 33 Menards Chevrolet I will have a good chance of winning the race.”
This is the first road course event of the year. Is Road America similar to the other courses on the schedule?
“Road America is different than Montreal and Watkins Glen [International]. It is very unique and one of the longest courses that you will run on. It presents a lot of challenges. Road America is one of the most technical and traditional tracks here in America. It has a lot of fast corners. It will be a very technical race.”
Media Access: Members of the media can now log on to www.kevinharvickinc.com to gain access to press kit information online. For more information, please email Tiffany Breaux at KHI at email@example.com.
2011 No. 33 KHI Team Nationwide Series Stats
|2/19||Daytona International Speedway||Clint Bowyer||Rheem||67||1st||2nd||2nd (-3)|
|2/26||Phoenix International Raceway||Kevin Harvick||Menards||66||9th||3rd||2nd (-1)|
|3/5||Las Vegas Motor Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem||69||4th||28th||6th (-23)|
|3/19||Bristol Motor Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem||66||8th||6th||5th (-10)|
|3/26||Auto Club Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem||71||2nd||3rd||3rd (-14)|
|4/8||Texas Motor Speedway||Paul Menard||Menards||71||5th||3rd||3rd (-1)|
|4/16||Talladega Superspeedway||Clint Bowyer||Rheem||67||2nd||22nd||4th (-20)|
|4/23||Nashville Superspeedway||Austin Dillon||Rheem||69||3rd||7th||4th (-24)|
|4/29||Richmond International Raceway||Paul Menard||Menards||66||6th||2nd||2nd (-30)|
|5/6||Darlington Raceway||Clint Bowyer||Rheem||71||2nd||6th||2nd (-34)|
|5/14||Dover International Speedway||Clint Bowyer||Rheem||69||3rd||14th||3rd (-35)|
|5/22||Iowa Speedway||Austin Dillon||Rheem||66||3rd||10th||5th (-34)|
|5/28||Charlotte Motor Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem||71||2nd||16th||5th (-38)|
|6/4||Chicagoland Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem||63||18th||13th||5th (-34)|
|6/18||Michigan International Speedway||Paul Menard||Menards||71||1st||4th||5th (-41)|
|6/25||Road America||Max Papis||Menards||75|
|7/1||Daytona International Speedway||Clint Bowyer||Menards|
|7/8||Kentucky Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem|
|7/16||New Hampshire Motor Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem|
|7/23||Nashville Superspeedway||Austin Dillon||Rheem|
|7/30||Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis||Austin Dillon||Menards|
|8/6||Iowa Speedway||Scott Speed||Menards|
|8/13||Watkins Glen International||Paul Menard||Menards|
|8/26||Bristol Motor Speedway||Clint Bowyer||Rheem|
|9/3||Atlanta Motor Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem|
|9/9||Richmond International Raceway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem|
|9/17||Chicagoland Speedway||Paul Menard||Menards|
|10/1||Dover International Speedway||Clint Bowyer||Rheem|
|10/8||Kansas Speedway||Paul Menard||Menards|
|10/14||Charlotte Motor Speedway||Paul Menard||Menards|
|11/5||Texas Motor Speedway||Kevin Harvick||Rheem|
|11/12||Phoenix International Raceway||Clint Bowyer||Rheem|
|11/19||Homestead-Miami Speedway||Clint Bowyer||Rheem|
FORT WORTH, Texas (June 10, 2011) – As the saying goes, everything is bigger in Texas. When the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) entered the Lone Star State, the fast-paced and action-filled series was sure to put on a show for the fans. Friday night’s Winstar World Casino 400K at Texas Motor Speedway did not disappoint, setting a new NCWTS record for number of cautions in one event at the Fort Worth facility. Despite a tight handling condition plaguing the No. 9 GEICO Toyota Tundra, Max Papis dodged the 10 cautions and finished the showdown in 15th-place.
On Thursday night, Papis took to the 1.5-mile oval for qualifying. The Italian clocked a lap of 30.653 seconds (176.165 mph), which placed the GEICO Toyota in the 21st starting position. The Germain Racing team was optimistic heading into Friday’s race, as the two practice sessions reinforced the notion of having a nice piece.
The green flag dropped shortly after 9 p.m. ET and the 167-lap showdown under the lights was underway. The first caution came a short seven laps into the race as oil was laid on the track. Papis quickly reported to Crew Chief Randy Goss that his GEICO Tundra was “tight center off”. On lap 10, the field restarted with Papis in 22nd-place. The first opportunity for Papis to hit pit road for adjustments came on lap 23 as the second caution slowed the pace. Goss brought his driver in for four tires, fuel, and adjustments to help the tight handling condition.
Papis restarted on lap 27 from the 22nd position and within three laps had moved inside the top-20. However, as the green flag run continued, the tight condition came back to the GEICO machine, which pushed Papis back to 23rd-place as the third caution came on lap 52. Papis returned to pit road for fresh tires, fuel, and more adjustments, before returning to racing action on lap 57 from the 24th position.
After two cautions hindered Papis’ progress, the GEICO Toyota had returned to the top-20 by lap 90 when the sixth caution came at The Great American Speedway. The tight condition continued to hinder Papis but the GEICO team kept trying to make the situation better. The No. 9 Tundra came to pit road for tires, fuel, and adjustments, before restarting on lap 96 from the 20th position.
The field spread out shortly after the restart as the laps clicked down to fewer than 50 remaining. The seventh caution of the night flew on lap 112 with Papis scored in 21st-place. This yellow period allowed Papis to return to pit road for tires, fuel, and additional adjustments. The GEICO Toyota restarted from inside the top-20 on lap 117.
With 30 laps to go in the 400K event, Papis made a phenomenal maneuver to dodge the spinning truck of Austin Dillon, which slid directly across the nose of the GEICO Toyota. As the tight handling condition continued, Goss called his driver back to pit road for the final time to “try something out of the box” as the previous adjustments hadn’t made much difference. With fresh tires, enough fuel to make it to the end, and numerous adjustments, Papis returned to racing on lap 143 from the 21st position.
Papis quickly moved back inside the top-20 and with only a handful of laps remaining, the GEICO Toyota was making up ground and contending to advance positions. Papis did quite the job behind the steering wheel to dodge the melee on the final lap to bring home a 15th-place finish.
“We just missed it on the handling a little bit,” said Papis. “But what I love about this team is that they never gave up. We kept working on it and working on it. It got better towards the end of the race and to bring home a top-15 finish is a solid day. In the big picture, when your bad day is a 15th-place finish, we are doing things right. The Truck Series has a few weeks off so we will go back to the shop and continue to work hard to bring a great GEICO Toyota to Kentucky.”
With his fifth top-15 finish of the year, Papis moved up one position to 11th-place in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship point standings. Papis is only two points behind teammate Brendan Gaughan for the 10th position.
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series has a three-week break before returning to action at Kentucky Speedway on Thursday night, July 7th. Live television coverage can be seen on SPEED starting at 7:30 p.m. ET, while the Motor Racing Network (MRN) will carry the live radio broadcast beginning at 7:45 p.m. ET.
To learn more about the GEICO Racing program, please visit: www.geicogarage.com
You can also follow GEICO Racing on Twitter: www.twitter.com/geicoracing
Please visit the Max Papis Facebook fan page: www.facebook.com/maxpapisracing
CONCORD, N.C. (May 20, 2011) – Twenty-four weeks out of the year, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series travels around the country, racing at tracks from Daytona to Las Vegas. However, there is one race at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway that every driver and team looks forward to. Read More..
Max Papis: acento italiano en la NASCAR
Desde hace ya algunos años, un piloto de origen europeo intenta ganarse la vida en el siempre competitivo mundo de la NASCAR. Massimiliano Papis, italiano, como su propio nombre indica, milita actualmente en el equipo Germain Racing, pilotando la Toyota Tundra nº 9 en la NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
Max se caracteriza por ser un piloto completo y versatil, un gran profesional que se ha labrado una extensa carrera profesional a base de talento natural, mucho trabajo, concentración y determinación.
En 1996, recientemente salido de la Formula 1, el joven Max Papis llegaba a America buscando un futuro en el mundo de la competición. Inmediatamente, el piloto italiano demostró quién era, y que no estaba en America de vacaciones. Al final de unas particularmente duras 24 Horas de Daytona, a los mandos de un prototipo Ferrari cubierto de cinta adhesiva por haber sufrido un accidente, puso toda la carne en el asador con un estilo de pilotaje “quien-dijo-miedo”, para alcanzar a los líderes de la carrera y terminar segundo. Ese día, Max se ganó el apodo con el que se le conoce en el mundo de la competición: Mad Max.
Tras su espectacular exhibición, Papis debutó en la Champ Car ese mismo año, sustituyendo al malogrado Jeff Krosnoff, fallecido en la carrera anterior en Toronto. Un par de temporadas después, Max se unía al equipo Rahal, mucho más competitivo, con el que terminó el campeonato en quinta posición. El año siguiente vencía en la primera prueba de la temporada, pero no la conseguía terminar entre los 10 primeros.
Su salto a la NASCAR se producía en 2006, debutando en el mes de Agosto en la Busch Series (actual Nationwide) en el Watkins Glen International, pilotando para el McGill Motorsports. El año siguiente, mientras pilotaba el coche nº 36 de la Busch Series, Max debutaba en la Sprint Cup, sustituyendo a Scott Riggs en el Infineon Raceway. Tras competir en varias carreras en circuitos no ovales, fue confirmado para ponerse a los mandos del Geico Toyota nº 13 en 18 carreras de la temporada 2009.
En su primera temporada como piloto de la Sprint Cup, Max logró su mejor resultado en Watkins Glen, donde fue octavo. Después el equipo decidió sustituirlo por Casey Mears, y Max pasó a competir en la Camping World Truck Series, donde milita actualmente.
A un nivel más personal, Max es un hombre de familia, al que le apasiona el ciclismo y el fitness. Comprometido con causas como la lucha contra el cancer, este licenciado en Ciencias Politicas por la universidad de Milan, compagina perfectamente su carrera profesional con sus otras pasiones.
Coincidiendo con el debut del finlandés Kimi Raikkonen, en NASCAR-EUROPE no nos queremos olvidar de Max, quien con su simpatía y profesionalidad lleva el acento italiano a la NASCAR.
19.05.2011 – www.nascar-europe.net
Max Papis da il benvenuto a Raikkonen in NASCAR
DOVER, Del. (May 13, 2011) – Known as the “Monster Mile,” Dover International Speedway has the reputation of a fierce animal that can grab a hold of a driver in a matter of seconds and leave teams with nothing but pieces of carnage. Max Papis and the No. 9 GEICO Racing team entered the sixth race of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series looking to survive the 200-lap event and bring home a solid effort.
Under sunny skies in Delaware, Papis took to the concrete mile for practice with a trial setup to experiment and see if the team could gain ground on their competitors. Papis communicated to his GEICO crew that his Toyota Tundra didn’t like the particular setup, making the decision to switch to one closer to his Germain Racing teammates. Hitting the track early Friday morning for qualifying, Papis held the truck wide open around the high-banked corners to roll off from the 23rd position in the 12th Annual Lucas Oil 200.
Once the green flag waved, Papis looked to attack and move towards the front of the field. Unfortunately, a loose handling condition quickly plagued the driver and relegated the GEICO Toyota to the 26th position as the first caution slowed the pace on lap eight for a single-truck accident on the backstretch. Papis remained on the racetrack and restarted on lap 13 from 24th-place.
As the air pressure rose in his four tires, Papis radioed to Crew Chief Randy Goss that he began to feel a tight handling condition that was hindering him from turning in the corners. As leader and eventual race winner Kyle Busch was setting a blistering pace, the No. 9 GEICO Toyota fell one lap down to the leaders on lap 30. Seventeen laps later, the second caution flew on lap 47 for a spin in turn two. Papis brought his Tundra to pit road for four tires, fuel, and adjustments to help the handling. The Como, Italy native restarted on lap 51 from the 27th position.
Over the next 25 laps, Papis kept working his way past competitors as he looked to place himself in the Lucky Dog position. Another caution came on lap 74 for a hard-hit by Ricky Carmichael but Papis fell a couple spots short of receiving the free pass. The GEICO Toyota returned to the attention of his pit crew for four tires, fuel, and additional adjustments.
Restarting on lap 81, Papis took off from 24th-place, after a solid pit stop by the GEICO crew. A long, uncharacteristic green-flag run ensued for the next 75 laps, forcing all teams to pit while the racing on the track continued. On lap 125, the leaders began hitting pit road and a handful of circuits later, Goss called Papis to pit road for four tires, fuel, and adjustments to continue working on fine-tuning the No. 9 Tundra.
The fifth caution for debris came on lap 156 after all teams had cycled through their respective green-flag pit stops. Papis had broken into the top-20 but was still looking to regain his position on the lead lap. The GEICO Tundra returned to pit road for four tires, fuel, and adjustments before returning to action on lap 161.
As the action picked up on the racetrack over the final 20 laps, four cautions slowed the pace of the race. On lap 186, Papis finally received the break he had been looking for all race long and was the recipient of the Lucky Dog Award, returning the Gecko to the lead lap. The field returned to green with nine laps remaining, with Papis scored in 18th-place. ‘Mad Max’ worked hard to pass numerous competitors to cross the finish line in the 13th position as the checkered flag flew.
With the determination of the GEICO team, Papis gained two positions to seventh-place in the NCWTS driver championship point standings, sitting 30 points behind sixth-place Austin Dillon. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will return to action this Friday night, May 20th at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.