DJ looks to score first Southern 500 win "The last several races have just about all been decided by fuel mileage and track position. That's one of the things that I look forward to at Darlington because the track is so abrasive and hard on...
DJ looks to score first Southern 500 win
"The last several races have just about all been decided by fuel mileage
and track position. That's one of the things that I look forward to at Darlington because the
track is so abrasive and hard on tires that I doubt we'll see very many
people do two-tire or fuel only pit stops. Races at Darlington are
usually all about the best car and driver on that particular day. You
have to have a good handling racecar, but you also have to be on your
game as a driver and be able to make a set of tires last on a long
Dale Jarrett on Racing at Darlington
Jarrett Hopes to Win Final Labor Day Weekend Classic . . . This Sunday's Southern 500 will mark Dale Jarrett's 17th time competing in the annual Labor Day Weekend classic at Darlington Raceway. While Jarrett has three wins at Darlington, he still has yet to score a victory in the Southern 500. He's come close on several occasions but the win during Darlington's August race has remained elusive. Jarrett would love nothing more than to add his name to the list of Southern 500 winners in particularly during this weekend's race as it is the final to take place in conjunction with Labor Day.
"The Southern 500 has always been a particularly special race to my family and me," Jarrett said. "This being the last Southern 500 to take place on Labor Day, it makes it that much more important because I've known very little else on Labor Day weekend than the Southern 500. I've been going there every year since I was born and when you talk about tradition and how things got started in our sport, you certainly think of Darlington and the Southern 500. That would mean a lot to me to get that first Southern 500 win on the last time we'll race there on Labor Day. That would be pretty special."
"I've been fortunate enough to win at Darlington, but not the Southern 500 and that would mean a lot to me," Jarrett continued. "Knowing the history of this sport and being there with my dad when he won there in '65, this is definitely the one on my resume that is not there right now that I'd like to have."
* Jarrett has three wins, 11 top fives and 13 top 10s at Darlington Raceway, and has also started three races from the pole.
* Jarrett's best finish in the Southern 500 is a pair of third-place finishes in 1998 and 1997.
* Since joining the #88 Robert Yates Racing team in 1996, Jarrett has lead laps in 10 of 15 races for a total of 371 laps.
UPS Team Hopes to Achieve Southern 500 Success . . . The #88 UPS Team will seek the win in the Southern 500 by competing with the same car they raced at Michigan two weeks ago. Although the Michigan race came down to a battle of which team gets the best fuel mileage, crew chief Shawn Parker believes fans can expect a slightly different story this weekend at Darlington.
"The race this weekend is going to be about the best handling race car and the best pit crew," Parker said. "I really don't think we'll see much of a two-tire stop situation. Four tires and track position is going to be the key and that means the pit crews will really earn their money this weekend. I mean it could come down to a fuel mileage situation, but if there is a caution that comes out with 30 or 40 to go, I think we'll see everyone come down pit road for four tires."