Busy Time For Newman

Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 12 ALLTEL Dodge, and the ALLTEL Racing team travel to Nashville Superspeedway for a day of testing after finishing their first test session of the 2005 season last week at Daytona International Speedway.

"Last week was an eventful week for us," Newman said. "We unveiled the new Dodge Charger. This was our first test session with the new body, so it was important for us to get as much knowledge as possible about the car. With this being the first session with it, we'll base a lot off of it."

Newman, along with other Dodge Motorsports drivers, unveiled the new Dodge Charger last Tuesday. The most significant change to the body style is the shape of the Charger's nose. Penske Racing South, along with Evernham Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing all unleashed their 2005 cars at Daytona last week.

While the ALLTEL team did not set the speed charts on fire with its new Dodge Charger, the team expects to learn more about the body style in upcoming weeks.

"Daytona is a really tricky track to learn a lot on," Newman explained. "We basically ran qualifying laps all week, so we can't really tell what kind of 'race' car it's going to be. We'll learn a lot more about the handling and performance of it when we test intermediate tracks like Las Vegas and California."

On Thursday, a morning rain shower forced NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series teams to retreat to the garage. After drying the surface, the cars returned to the track shortly after lunch for drafting practice. Due to the delayed testing day, NASCAR officials extended the test session until 7:30 p.m. EDT, ending the season's first test session under the lights.

Following the test in Nashville, Newman and team will travel to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for a two-day test session at the end of the month, immediately followed by a two-day session at California Speedway.

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