Player Management International Media Release

Daytona Beach, FL (February 22, 2015) – Casey Mears and Germain Racing are off to a blazing start in the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.  Save for a distressing Duel 150, the GEICO team scored top finishes during Speedweeks and, more notably, managed to cruise through ten practice sessions, Daytona 500 qualifying, a short-lived Duel 150 and a 507.5-mile race without damaging a single racecar.  While their fourth place finish in the Sprint Unlimited and the sixth place Daytona 500 result is impressive, most impressive is the fact that they escaped the World Center of Racing unscathed. 

While an engine issue in Thursday’s opening Duel 150 relegated Mears to a 41st starting position in Sunday’s Daytona 500, he and his crew remained unshaken.  After all, Mears is referred to as one of the best restrictor-plate racers on the circuit and effortlessly finds his way to the front of the field when necessary.  Crew chief Bootie Barker devised a strategy to assist in keeping Mears’ No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS safe and clean, allowing him to be there at the end of the 200 laps and have a chance of winning the Great American Race.  

When the green flag got the Daytona 500 underway on a hot Sunday afternoon, Barker advised Mears to remain at the rear of the field and protect his equipment.  Restrictor-plate racetracks are notorious for crashes that are affectionately referred to as ‘the big one’ and they collect packs of racecars at a time.  Barker’s plan would minimize any potential risk of peril.  

Aside from being the leader of the event on lap 22, Mears executed perfectly and exhibited patience through 160 laps of racing.  With 200 laps in the scheduled distance, he began carefully navigating his GEICO Chevy toward the front of the field, where he ultimately chased down the leaders.  He was in the 18th position by lap 161, but restarted 16th on the lap 165 restart after the GEICO crew picked up two positions on pit road during a yellow flag stop.  He quickly pedaled his way into 12th by lap 166 and continued into the top-10 with just 18 laps remaining.  Mears and his GEICO SS were running 10th with three laps to go when Justin Allgaier and Ty Dillon got together and brought out the caution flag.  Mears was sitting pretty with an impending green-white-checker finish on the horizon. 

When the green flag waved for the final time on Sunday, the race headed into overtime and took 203 laps to settle.  Mears and his GEICO machine restarted from the 9th position and were on the move quickly.  With the white flag in the air, he had caught the top-five and was hurriedly closing.  During the final lap, cars began crashing behind him and after the yellow and checkered flags waved simultaneously, Mears scored a sixth place finish in the season opening Daytona 500. 

“It was a really solid day.  We’ve run up front at a lot of these things and today showed how strong we are on these tracks,” said Mears, who finished 10th in last year’s Daytona 500 and fourth in the July race.  “We are getting a little bit greedier.  We definitely want to win one of these races.  I think our standards are getting higher.  We went from possibly not being in the show to finishing sixth in the biggest race of the year and that’s definitely a good spread and a good way to start the season for sure.  I’m proud of the guys on this GEICO team and happy to give all of the GEICO associates a good finish.”

Mears’ GEICO Chevy carried a decal during Speedweeks honoring the memory of Braeden Hollowell and Annie and Caroline Clark, three high school students that perished in a tragic car accident in west central Indiana, on January 2, 2015.  The family of Hollowell was on-hand to spend time with the team during the race weekend. 

Mears and his GEICO team will next journey just a few hours away to Hampton, GA.                                                     

Casey Mears and the No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS will hit the track at Atlanta Motor Speedway for the weekend’s opening practice session on Friday, February 27th, at 1:00 PM (ET).  Qualifying will follow at 5:45 PM (ET). 

The Folds of Honor QuickTrip 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is on Sunday, March 1st, and it will be televised live on FOX beginning at 1:00 PM (ET).  The Performance Racing Network (PRN) will carry the live radio broadcast, along with SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, channel 90. 

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