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Newman Riding Momentum Into Season Finale

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HOMESTEAD, Nov. 18, 2010: Riding a second-place high into the final Sprint Cup race of the season, U.S. Army driver Ryan Newman is aiming for another strong finish in Sunday's Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

In last Sunday's Cup event at Phoenix International Raceway Newman drove a savvy race, conserving fuel when he needed to and posting a runner-up result at the same track where he won earlier in the season.

"The only thing better than going into the last race of the season with a second-place finish is leaving the final event with a first-place finish in our U.S. Army Chevrolet," said Newman, a 14-time Sprint Cup winner. "It's kind of been a hit and miss season for us, but we've always been on the edge of success. We didn't make the Chase this season, but we know that we are definitely Chase material and I am confident that it will be a different scenario in 2011 for our No. 39 team."

The late-season results will confirm that Newman has come on strong, scoring seven of his 13 top-10 finishes in the last 12 races.

"We've been better recently -- no question about that," stated Newman. "But we really want to finish off the season with something special, which will make the offseason more pleasant for the entire team."

Speaking of the offseason, it will definitely be a new experience for Newman as he is soon to become a first-time father. His wife Krisse is due shortly, and in case baby Newman arrives this weekend, four-time NASCAR truck champion Ron Hornaday will be ready to step in as the team's substitute driver.

"This is an exciting time for Krissie and me and if things work out where Ron will need to get in the car I know he will do a good job," said Newman. "He did get some seat time in the No. 39 during a practice session in Phoenix."

Though Newman is on baby watch, he is still keeping his racing focus as he prepares for his ninth start at the 1.5-mile Homestead track. In his previous eight starts, he has scored two top 10s.

"Homestead has not been one of my better tracks in terms of finishes, but I feel that can change this weekend," noted Newman. "The good news is that every week when we get to the track there is always a high degree of confidence and a high-degree of expectation. The same kind of attitude of our Army Strong Soldiers."