31 RYAN NEWMAN, Chevrolet
Team: Richard Childress Racing
WHERE HE STANDS: After two weeks in seventh place, Ryan Newman moved up two spots to fifth in the standings after Pocono. He trails points leader Jeff Gordon by 115 points, is 26 points behind fourth-ranked Matt Kenseth and leads the sixth-ranked tie of Joey Logano and Jimmie Johnson by nine points.
WATKINS GLEN RECORD: 12 career starts, 0 wins, 1 top-5, 3 top-10s, 0 poles. Best career finish: Second in his first career Cup start there in 2002. Finished 14th in this race last year and was 11th in the 2012 race there.
LOOKING AHEAD: Newman has never come close to equaling his first race at Watkins Glen, where he finished second. Still looking for his first win of the season, which would all but assure he makes the Chase, Newman has a big task ahead of him this Sunday: "Watkins Glen is so much faster than Sonoma Raceway. I think Pocono was a nice warm up to this race because of the fact that we had to shift. It couldn't have fallen at a better place on the schedule when it comes to preparing for this race. The speed is the biggest difference when comparing Watkins Glen to Sonoma. It also provides for a few more places to pass on the track, and that's always a good thing for us."
LOOKING BACK: Newman had a decent run at Pocono. While he didn't lead any laps, he did come home with an eighth place showing.
ETC.: Even with his mediocre overall performance there, Newman has completed a near-perfect 99.9 percent (1,083) of the 1,084 total laps contested in 12 career starts at Watkins Glen. His average start there is 10.0 and average finish is 15.7. He has zero DNFs there.