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Team Interstate: Spin-outs on the Speedway

March 23rd, 2015 by
David Ragan, Matt Kenseth and Denny Hamlin ran together early in Sunday's Auto Club 400. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

David Ragan, Matt Kenseth and Denny Hamlin ran together early in Sunday’s Auto Club 400. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

A promising day for Team Interstate ended with middle-of-the-road finishes Sunday, March 22, on the Auto Club Speedway — where the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry finished 18th after starting in 4th.
The Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry gets a splash of fuel at Auto Club Speedway. Photo copyright 2015 Terry Gilg.

The Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry gets a splash of fuel at Auto Club Speedway. Photo copyright 2015 Terry Gilg.

David Ragan took the Interstate Camry to 3rd place but spun out and fell about two laps behind the leaders. He was able to work his way back for a top-20 finish.

Carl Edwards, starting from 15th, fought to hold his position throughout the race and finished 13th, while the rest of Team Interstate suffered from a pit road penalty and a broken rear axle.

Brad Keselowski won the race, his first of the season.

 

 

 

Team Interstate recap for Auto Club Speedway 2015

 

A Special Look Behind the Wall

Before the race, about 400 Interstate guests joined David, Matt Kenseth and JGR competition chief Jimmy Makar and the No. 18 pit crew at the Interstate batteries hospitality tent for some autographs and a Q&A session.

Check out this pre-race interview with David Ragan about the speedway and how the track feels.

And don’t miss this interview with Crew Chief Adam Stevens on getting the car set up for Auto Club Speedway and parenting advice he’s given Kyle Busch:

NASCAR Xfinity Series

Auto Club Speedway

  • No. 18 – Daniel Suarez – 13th
  • No. 20 – Erik Jones – 3rd
  • No. 54 – Denny Hamlin – 18th

Monster Energy AMA Supercross

Detroit

  • Weston Peick – 22nd
  • Phillip Nicoletti – 15th

This Week

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David Ragan: Circling the Calendar

March 18th, 2015 by

David Ragan - Interstate Batteries

When David Ragan first got the assignment as fill-in driver for the injured Kyle Busch, he likely had a few races circled on his calendar. The first of those would be Sunday’s Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.

Why? Well, the driver of the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) can look back at the No. 18 team’s record at the 2-mile oval and it paints a very optimistic picture for Ragan’s chances this weekend.

Busch and the Interstate Batteries team have posted back-to-back wins at the Southern California track and have finished no worse than third in their last four starts together at Fontana.

Sunday’s Auto Club 400 will be the first of six races for Interstate Batteries for the 2015 season. Ragan has fond memories of watching the green Interstate Batteries car as he was growing up, whether it was Dale Jarrett’s 1993 Daytona 500 win in Interstate green, or Bobby Labonte’s 2000 Sprint Cup championship. He would like nothing more than add his name to the winning history of the green No. 18 Interstate Batteries teams of the past.

Ragan will be supported by the efforts of Joe Gibbs Racing’s founding sponsor and its social media campaign, which can be followed via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@InterstateBatts) with the hashtags #Relentless and #TeamInterstate.

So while Kyle Busch won’t be able to defend his win from the past two years at Fontana, Ragan and his fellow Team Interstate drivers Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth, and Carl Edwards hope they can feed off of the recent magic from the No. 18 team and make it three in a row for JGR in Southern California.

 DAVID RAGAN, Driver of the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing

 The No. 18 team has won the last two races at Auto Club Speedway. What are your thoughts going to California knowing the recent history the 18 team there?

“That makes me excited. I knew Kyle had won there recently at California, but didn’t know it was each of the last two years. That puts some pressure on the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Camry. It also gives you some confidence that your team has run well and your teammates have run well there. A lot of things change from year to year. Every track I’ve gone to so far with the 18 bunch, I’ve learned something and have experienced something a little different, and California could be a lot of the same. It’s going to be a lot of fun driving the Interstate Batteries car. I grew up an Interstate Batteries fan. This car has been a staple sponsor in our garage for as long as I can remember. That’s going to be one of the neat things, too, about California – to drive that bright green car.”

 What are your thoughts heading to Fontana this weekend?

“California is fun place to race. You’ve got a lot of speed down those long straightaways, but you have some bumps and you have a lot of things there to challenge you. That’s the great part about our schedule – you have different types of racetracks every weekend and there’s no other similar track like California on our schedule. I know Kyle has run really well out there the last few years and the Toyotas are always strong there. I’m looking forward to making some laps around California because you can move around. You can run the apron down in (turns) three and four and you can run by the wall throughout the race. You have a lot of options when it gets time to racing other cars, so I’m really looking forward to California with our Interstate Batteries Toyota this weekend.”

What makes Auto Club Speedway a challenging racetrack?

“California is a pretty straightforward racetrack that doesn’t have a lot of grip. It’s got a few bumps here and there and it’s important to dodge the seams. So you kind of know going into it what you need to be a contender at California. I enjoy it. It’s a neat racetrack and there’s certainly no racetrack similar to it on our circuit since they’ve repaved Michigan. You’ve got some bugs to work out there on Friday and Saturday, but it’s a fun place to race.”

David Ragan signs autographs for our guests in Vegas. #NASCAR #TeamInterstate

A photo posted by Interstate Batteries (@interstatebatts) on

What are the keys to success at Auto Club Speedway? “I think the key is having a good-handling car so you don’t have to abuse the tires on the front half of a run because you can have long green-flag run. You’ve got to be able to move around and find what your car’s sweet spots are. Do you run the middle or do you run the top? What is your engine package like? So, driving for a different manufacturer here than in the past with a different rules package, it will be important to do some searching around on Friday and Saturday. Pit crews are important at every track but, at a place like California, they’re even more important so you can get track position and get out front in that good clean air. That’s important.”  Will you be asking some questions to find out what has made Kyle so dominant at Auto Club Speedway?  “Absolutely, I’ll definitely try to talk to Kyle. I’ve reached out to him every week I’ve been in the car, really, just to see the tricks and some of the things that have worked well for him in these cars. He’s had a different Sprint Cup crew chief in the past but, still, a lot of stuff carries over.”

Since Kyle can’t be in California to defend his win from the last two years, would it be a big deal to win one for Kyle?

“It would be big for myself, too, but also for the team and Kyle. The momentum that they’re going to have when Kyle comes back is going to be important. It’s important that I help Kyle’s team work well together over the next however many weeks it is so, when he gets back, the team can hit the ground running with him in the car.”

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Team Interstate finishes mid-pack in Phoenix

March 16th, 2015 by

 

David Ragan is subbing for Kyle Busch. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

David Ragan is subbing for Kyle Busch. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

Carl Edwards led Team Interstate with a 13th-place finish in Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series CampingWorld.com 500k at Phoenix International Raceway. Teammates Matt Kenseth, David Ragan (filling in for the injured Kyle Busch) and Denny Hamlin finished 16th, 21st and 23rd, respectively.

“We had a top-15 Snickers Xtreme Camry I think,” David said. “Real proud of my guys and the way we started, but just had a really tough last third of the race.”

David held the 15th spot until lap 310, when he got loose following a restart and lost several positions. An air gun malfunction on the final pit stop on lap 290 dropped the Snickers/Interstate Batteries No. 18 back to 26th on the ensuing restart. He was able to make up five positions over the final 20 laps to earn his 21st-place finish.

Kevin Harvick won the race, his second of the young season.

 

Image

Xfinity Series

Phoenix

  • No. 18 – Daniel Suarez – 11th
  • No. 20 – Matt Kenseth – 2nd
  • No. 54 – Erik Jones – 5th

Monster Energy AMA Supercross

Indianapolis

  • No. 23 – Weston Peick – 4th
  • No. 46 – Phil Nicoletti – 13th

This Week

  • NASCAR: Auto Club Speedway, Fontana, Calif. David Ragan will drive the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota.
  • Supercross: Ford Field, Detroit

 

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Team Interstate: Bad Hand Derails Erik Jones’ Strong Run

March 9th, 2015 by
Erik Jones drove the No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota in Saturday's Xfinity Series race. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images.

Erik Jones drove the No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota in Saturday’s Xfinity Series race. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images.

After Team Interstate‘s Erik Jones challenged for the lead several times throughout the Boyd Gaming 300 NASCAR Xfinity Series race Saturday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, an accident on lap 173 sent his No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota out of the race. Instead of vying for the win, Jones was relegated to a 29th-place finish.

The Outrageously Dependable Interstate Batteries Pit Crew earned  Erik several spots on Pit Road.

The Outrageously Dependable Interstate Batteries Pit Crew earned Erik several spots on Pit Road.

“We had an awesome Interstate Batteries Camry – one I thought was good enough to contend for the win today,” Jones said. “Thanks to Norm (Miller) and everyone at Interstate Batteries for putting this deal together. I wish we could’ve brought home a better finish, but the result doesn’t take away from how great our day was.

“We were able to lead laps and run up front. It was an awesome team effort from everyone on the pit box to the pit crew. It’s just a shame we couldn’t finish the race. It just wasn’t in the cards today, so we’ll move on to Phoenix and try to get a win there.”

Austin Dillon won the race. Team Interstate’s Denny Hamlin and Daniel Suarez finished fourth and 10th, respectively.

Erik and David Shine in Interstate’s Hospitality Tent

David Ragan asked for a picture with guests of the Interstate Batteries hospitality tent at Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday.

David Ragan asked for a picture with guests of the Interstate Batteries hospitality tent at Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday.

On Sunday morning, about 400 guests enjoyed a hospitality experience from Interstate Batteries, with music, food, driver appearances and a photo booth. David Ragan, substituting in the No. 18 Interstate Batteries/M&M’s Toyota for the injured Kyle Busch, spoke to the crowd and even insisted on taking a group photo with those in attendance.

Not to be outdone, Erik reflected on his day in the Interstate Batteries car then visited the photo booth to send a special get-well-soon message to Kyle.

Erik Jones stopped by our photo booth to shoot a special "get well soon" message for Kyle Busch.

 

Sprint Cup Series

Team Interstate results from Sunday, March 8. Photo copyright 2015 Autostock Images.Denny Hamlin, driver of the No. 11 Toyota Camry, led Team Interstate Sunday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway by finishing fifth in the Kobalt 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. It was Hamlin’s second top-five finish in 10 career Sprint Cup starts at the 1.5-mile speedway.

Hamlin’s Team Interstate companions – Matt Kenseth in the No. 20 Toyota Camry; David Ragan, interim driver of the No. 18 Toyota Camry as he subs for the injured Kyle Busch; and Carl Edwards in the No. 19 Toyota Camry; – finished ninth, 22nd and 42nd, respectively.

Kevin Harvick won the race.

Monster Energy AMA Supercross

  • Weston Peick – 8th
  • Phillip Nicoletti – 14th

This Week

  • NASCAR: Phoenix International Raceway
  • Supercross: Indianapolis

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Erik Jones: Looking for Lady Luck a Second Time in Las Vegas

March 4th, 2015 by

 

Erik Jones, driver of the No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing

One start. One victory.

For what it’s worth, those numbers for Erik Jones at Las Vegas Motor Speedway can be considered nothing short of impressive. Last September, in his first career start at the 1.5-mile oval, the 18-year-old Jones drove the No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) Toyota Tundra to victory in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race.

After starting the race 13th, Jones methodically picked his way through the field, providing valuable feedback to his crew along the way that helped make his truck better throughout the 146-lap race. In the closing laps, Jones passed his then-KBM teammate Darrell Wallace Jr., to move into the lead for the final 14 circuits and take the checkered flag.

It’s just one of four victories in 19 career starts for Jones, who is competing full-time in the Truck series this season for KBM.

Erik Jones is already making quite a name for himself in NASCAR. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

Erik Jones is already making quite a name for himself in NASCAR. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

This weekend, Jones returns to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the Boyd Gaming 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series race, during which he will pilot the No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR).

It will be Jones’s sixth career XFINITY Series start and his third this season. His best finish in his previous five races is a sixth-place effort, which came at Phoenix International Raceway last November. This weekend’s race will also mark his first start with JGR founding partner Interstate Batteries.

Considering Interstate Batteries has adorned the hood of JGR’s cars for the past 23 seasons, Jones really hopes he still has “Lady Luck” on his side, just like he had last September. He’d love nothing more than to add his name to the list of drivers who have taken the Texas-based company to victory lane.

Based on his victory in the “City of Lights” last season, the Byron, Michigan native clearly knows how to get around the Las Vegas oval. However, this weekend’s race will be yet another challenge for Jones who, still fairly early in his NASCAR career, will take to the track in the No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota and continue to learn how to wheel an XFINITY car around the track.

All things considered, it’s a challenge relished by Jones, who coincidentally was discovered by Las Vegas-native Kyle Busch.

Busch saw first-hand just how talented Jones was back in 2012. It was then that Jones passed and then held off Busch in the closing laps to win the famed Snowball Derby, one of the premiere Late Model races in the country held at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Florida. At the time, Jones was just 15 years old.

Since then, Busch has taken the young racer under his wing, teaching him, advising him and encouraging him each step of the way. With Busch now sidelined due to injuries sustained in the XFINITY race two weeks ago at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway, Jones would like nothing more than to give his friend and mentor something to cheer about this weekend – a win at Busch’s home track.

A look at the message for Kyle Busch on the #NASCAR XFINITY Interstate Batteries #Camry.

A photo posted by Boris (@joegibbsracing) on

Erik Jones, Driver of the No. 20 Interstate Batteries NASCAR XFINITY Series Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing:

 You won in your first start at Las Vegas in the Truck Series last season. What does it mean to go to a place where you have raced and won? And what does it mean to have longtime JGR sponsor Interstate Batteries on the hood of your Toyota Camry this weekend?

“Being able to go to a place where I’ve been to before, especially Las Vegas, where we won at last year in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, is something I’m looking forward to because I do have experience at that track and, to some degree, I know what to expect. Going back there and having Interstate Batteries on the car is a pretty cool opportunity, too. Interstate Batteries has been in NASCAR and with Joe Gibbs Racing for a long time, and the roster of drivers they have had over the years is pretty impressive. For me, it’s an honor to have my name associated with the No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota this weekend. I’m just looking forward to getting on track out there and seeing what the difference is between the truck and the XFINITY car, just trying to feel it out and see what we can do. Hopefully, my experience will be something that helps us right out of the box, and we can get a really solid finish for the Interstate Batteries team.”

Obviously, you are getting some more valuable for seat time, which is exciting. Can you talk about that a little bit?

“It’s definitely a neat opportunity to be in the car as much as I am this year. I’ve never really run more than 20 races a year in my whole career, so to have the opportunity to run 40 races is pretty cool for me. Just going to places I’ve never been before, like Atlanta Motor Speedway last weekend, is something that’s not easy and is a challenge. But I’ve just been figuring it out as I go. The biggest positive for me is that I have good people around me. I have good people to ask questions to and definitely have good racecars, so all that makes it a lot easier. It’s been a fun transition. Any time a driver gets to be in the seat, they’re always happy, so I’m definitely enjoying it.”

You said you haven’t driven a lot of races. Do you feel like you learn every time you get behind the wheel, whether it’s a practice or a race?

“Absolutely, especially at a place I’ve never been. Like Atlanta last week, every time I got on the racetrack, it seemed like there was something new I was figuring out. Being in a truck and a car in the same weekend kind of expedites that process. You’re always learning, whether you’ve been to a place before or not. But, being new to a place, you’re always figuring out a little about the track that you wouldn’t have known before. As much as somebody can tell you how to drive the track, until you get out there and get a feel for it yourself, you don’t really know exactly what the track wants. Just trying to figure that part out is a big part of the weekend for me. Trying to figure out how to go fast around places is never too easy. Although I have some experience at Las Vegas thanks to the Truck Series race last year, I’m pretty sure it will be a brand new learning experience all over again for me with the XFINITY car this weekend. I’m looking forward to getting the Interstate Batteries Toyota on track and seeing what we can do with it.”

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Jeff Payne Likes Us. You’ll Love Why.

March 3rd, 2015 by

Everyone’s got a story.

When your story gets people to care, those people turn into your customers. For your business, likability transforms a ho-hum transaction into a fan-making meeting.

That’s what happened when business and marketing strategist Jeff Payne met Reid Fogelson, manager of the Interstate All Battery Center store in Georgetown, Texas.

He asked me how my day was going and before I knew it he had me engaged and we were sharing stories like we were old friends.

I learned he was an ex-Marine and that he loved working at Interstate Batteries because of the values and difference the company makes to its employees and the customers they serve.

Reid was sharing a brand story. He could have just pointed me to the battery section, but he got me to care.

Get the full story from Jeff Payne on his blog, and discover the power of good brand storytelling.

Want to see our stories about a world land speed contender, how we recycle, and a museum piece that we brought to life? Watch these videos and more on interstatebatteries.com/connect.

What’s your Interstate Batteries story?

Share it with us at press@interstatebatteries.com or leave a comment below.

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Team Interstate: 18th for #18 in Atlanta

March 2nd, 2015 by

Team Interstate race results - Atlanta 2015

Matt Kenseth led Team Interstate at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Sunday by finishing fifth in the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. David Ragan, interim driver of the No. 18 M&M’s Crispy/Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry, finished 18th in his debut for Joe Gibbs Racing.

David started 17th and ran as high as fourth before the handling began to go away. After a long green-flag run, he had fallen to 22nd by lap 167.

“I think it was a snowball effect,” David said after the race. “We just really probably were a little behind on our adjustment, and that’s probably just my inexperience with these guys and being a little timid on making a few adjustments.”

“We learned a lot, brought the car back in one piece, but we can run better than that. I felt like we had a good, solid top-10 car and things just didn’t shake out.”

Teammates Carl Edwards and Denny Hamlin finished 38th and 12th, respectively. Jimmie Johnson won the race.

Xfinity Series

Atlanta

  • No. 18 – Daniel Suarez: 14th 
  • No. 20 – Matt Kenseth: 8th 
  • No. 54 – Erik Jones: 13th

Monster Energy Supercross

Atlanta

  • No. 23 – Weston Pieck: 10th
  • No. 46 – Phillip Nicoletti: 17th

This Week

  • NASCAR: Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Erik Jones will drive the No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry in the Xfinity Series on Saturday.
  • Supercross: Daytona International Speedway

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Joe Gibbs Racing Names David Ragan Interim Driver of the No. 18

February 24th, 2015 by
David Ragan

David Ragan will pilot the No. 18 M&M’s/Interstate Batteries Toyota while Kyle Busch recovers.

Joe Gibbs Racing announced Tuesday that Sprint Cup driver David Ragan will replace Kyle Busch in the No.18 Interstate Batteries/M&M’s Toyota until Kyle recovers from serious injuries sustained Saturday night in the NASCAR Xfinity race at Daytona International Speedway.

David has run eight full seasons in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with 291 career starts.  The 29-year-old Georgia native has two career Sprint Cup wins including most recently at Talladega Superspeedway in May 2013.

He will drive the 18 for at least the next several weeks. This will include the Interstate Batteries Sprint Cup paint scheme coming up in Fontana, CA on March 22 and possibly at Texas Motor Speedway on April 11.

After surgery in Daytona Saturday night to repair the compound fracture of his right lower leg and three nights recovering in the hospital,  Kyle was flown to Charlotte where he will be undergo further evaluation of bones broken in his left foot and rehab on his injured leg.

Joe Gibbs: “Kyle is eager to return…”

JGR Team Owner Joe Gibbs held a press conference Sunday and, according to Foxsports.com, would not speculate on how long Kyle will need to return.

“As far as time or length, I haven’t really … I don’t think I have a really good understanding of that with the doctors and everything,” said Gibbs. “I think we’re just going to pray for him to bounce back.”

Coach Gibbs said Kyle is eager to return. “He’s already telling Sam (wife), ‘I just want to get back to racing,'” Coach said. “He has a great spirit about things like that.”

Erik Jones will sub for Kyle Busch in Saturday's Xfinity Series race in Atlanta. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

Erik Jones will sub for Kyle Busch in Saturday’s Xfinity Series race in Atlanta. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

Erik Jones to Sub for Kyle in Xfinity Series

In addition, JGR announced that Erik Jones will pilot the No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this weekend in Atlanta. An announcement on who will drive the Monster Energy Camry following Atlanta will be made at a later date.

Erik is currently running a full season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series for Kyle Busch Motorsports and a partial schedule for JGR in the No. 20 NASCAR Xfinity Series Camry.

Want to send Get Well wishes to Kyle? Here’s how:

Many of Kyle’s fans are sending Kyle their get-well-soon messages on social media. One popular hashtag is #BowForKyle, where fans imitate Kyle’s trademark Vegas Showman Bow from Victory Lane. Fans can post their bows anytime, but they’re especially encouraged to post during lap 18 of each Xfinity Series and Sprint Cup Series race while Kyle recovers. Another popular hash tag is #GetWellKyle.   Click here to see the tributes, and post your own on Twitter or Instagram. You can also write simple get-well-soon messages and send them to Kyle Busch, Kyle Busch Motorsports, 351 Mazeppa Road, Mooresville, NC 28115.

Crew Chief Adam Stevens upbeat about Kyle’s quick recovery

Regarding Kyle’s accident and injuries, Adam Stevens, Kyle’s new crew chief said, “Everybody is in high spirits to start this season. We got the wind taken out of our sails (Saturday), but we’ve all been in communication with Kyle and we know that he’s a strong person and he’s going to come back stronger than ever. Whatever the doctors tell him, he’s probably going to shave about three or four weeks off of that and be beating on our door,” Nascar.com reported.

JGR teams pull together in support of the 18

“Joe Gibbs Racing has always operated with a one team philosophy,” said JD Gibbs, President. “Although we have four cars on the race track each week competing against each other and 39 other competitors, the crew chiefs, drivers and team members all work together to share information and assist one another however possible to give each team its best opportunity to be successful.”

Watch for Kyle Busch Updates

JGR and Interstate will provide updates as soon as they are available. Take a moment to encourage Kyle and Samantha Busch by posting a message using this twitter hashtag: #BowForKyle

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Team Interstate: Kyle Busch Injured in Daytona Crash

February 24th, 2015 by

Team Interstate Results for the 2015 Daytona 500The annual Daytona 500 is often filled with drama. Unfortunately, the drama struck Team Interstate before the race even began.

In the closing laps of Saturday’s Xfinity Series race, Team Interstate’s Kyle Busch was involved in a big crash, an unfortunate byproduct of a restrictor plate race with cars lined nose to tail and reaching speeds of nearly 200 mph. Kyle got a bit loose and had contact with the No. 20 car in front of him, which was driven by his teammate Erik Jones. Kyle’s car went down through the infield grass and into the inside retaining wall. He suffered a compound fracture of the lower right leg and a broken left foot as a result of the impact.

Kyle had surgery Saturday night to repair the injury on his right lower leg. The surgery was a success. Kyle is in good spirits. And he returned to Charlotte Tuesday morning where he will undergo further evaluation, including a specialist for his left foot injury.

Matt Crafton drove the No. 18 M&M's Crispy/Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry in Sunday's Daytona 500.

Matt Crafton drove the No. 18 M&M’s Crispy/Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry in Sunday’s Daytona 500. Copyright 2015 Autostock Images

Defending NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion Matt Crafton substituted for Kyle in Sunday’s Daytona 500. Despite having no practice in the No. 18 M&M’s Crispy/Interstate Batteries car, Matt performed admirably.

He largely used the first half of the race simply to adjust to the car’s handling. His experience in the truck series proved valuable. He was patient. Then, late in the race, he was battling for a spot toward the top ten late when an accident ahead cost him several spots on the final lap. He finished 18th.

Team Interstate’s Denny Hamlin, Carl Edwards and Matt Kenseth finished fourth, 23rd and 35th, respectively. Joey Logano won the race.

What Happens Next?

On Tuesday, Joe Gibbs Racing named veteran Sprint Cup Series driver David Ragan to replace Kyle while he is recovering.

David has run eight full seasons in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with 291 career starts.  The 29-year-old Georgia native has two career Sprint Cup wins, including most recently at Talladega Superspeedway in May 2013.

He will drive the 18 for at least the next several weeks. This will include the Interstate Batteries Sprint Cup paint scheme coming up in Fontana, CA on March 22 and possibly at Texas Motor Speedway on April 11.

Share Your Well Wishes!

Spectators Bow for Kyle at Daytona.Many of Kyle’s fans are sending Kyle their get-well-soon messages on social media. One popular hashtag is #BowForKyle, where fans imitate Kyle’s trademark Vegas Showman Bow from Victory Lane. Another popular hashtag is #GetWellKyle.

Other Team Interstate Results

Xfinity Series – Daytona

  • Daniel Suarez, No. 18 – 39th
  • Erik Jones, No. 20 – 18th
  • Kyle Busch, No. 54 – 26th

Monster Energy AMA Supercross – Atlanta

  • Weston Peick, No. 23 – 5th
  • Phil Nicoletti, No. 46 – 11th

This Week

  • NASCAR: Atlanta Motor Speedway
  • Supercross: Georgia Dome, Atlanta

 

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Powerful Reading for National Battery Day

February 18th, 2015 by
February 18 is always National Battery Day

February 18 is always National Battery Day

It’s National Battery Day, believed to be named in honor of Alessandro Volta, the Italian physicist who invented the electric battery. He was born on February 18, 1745, so celebrate with your favorite batteries!

Or curl up with your battery-powered laptop, tablet or phone and read our favorite articles:

Top 10 Reasons to Love Your Battery

Why not treat your batteries as other members of your family?

Why not treat your batteries as other members of your family?

You depend on batteries for so much of your daily life. Isn’t it about time you showed them some love? From smartphones to cars, batteries are all around us.

http://ibatts.co/61810zoh

11 Great Moments in Battery History

We’ve been charged with the important task of building awareness of and cranking up the excitement surrounding National Battery Day. To that end, we present 11 great moments in battery history. Some of them are actually true!

http://ibatts.co/61860zUE

5 Life Lessons Batteries Taught Me

Today's lesson Batteries aren’t the most vocal, active or even visually stunning things out there. But if you pay attention the way we have, you pick up some real heartfelt ideas.

http://ibatts.co/61830zUB

Battery tips for National Battery Day

We offer up some tips to keep your batteries in good running order so so they can keep your life running smoothly and help you stay safe during emergencies.

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The History of the Battery

 How Batteries Changed the World

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About The Outrageously Dependable Blog

Interstate Batteries® sells more than 16,000 kinds of batteries—from AA alkalines and automotive batteries to critical power solutions, and everything in between. Combine professional battery services, recycling programs and the largest battery distribution network in North America, and you’ll find Interstate has EVERY BATTERY FOR EVERY NEED®. Learn more about Interstate Batteries or shop online!