DAYTONA BEACH , Fla. -- Dale Jarrett Friday ran the fastest lap in two years of NASCAR Winston Cup stock car testing at Daytona International Speedway when he was clocked at 191.898 mph. Jarrett closed the four days of Ford testing for the Feb. 19 Daytona 500 as the fastest car on each day.

On Friday, Morgan Shepherd ran 191.042 mph, which equalled Ernie Irvan's best lap of last winter, ironically in the same Robert Yates Racing Thunderbird that Jarrett now drives.

IMSA sports cars begin a three-day test today for the Feb. 4-5 Rolex 24 At Daytona. A section of the Oldfield Grandstand will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with access through the Visitors' Center.

NASCAR Winston Cup test sessions resume on Tuesday, Jan. 10, when General Motors teams begin a three-day session.

After the test ended, Shepherd, who has gotten close to Victory Lane at Daytona, made a forecast. The veteran from Conover, N.C., finished second to Irvan in the 1992 Daytona 500 and was runner-up twice in the Pepsi 400. The driver of the #21 Wood Brothers Ford Thunderbird says 1995 just might be his year.

"I feel like we're going to be in the best shape we've ever been in for Daytona," noted Shepherd during a break in testing. "We've got the strength and the preparation. Maybe we'll have a real good shot at a Daytona 500 victory this time. I've had some good runs here, I just haven't pulled off that win yet."

Shepherd and the Wood Brothers' crew, led by Eddie and Len Wood, feel the strength they've gathered over the past three seasons is a solid groundwork for a run at the NASCAR Winston Cup title.

"Last year, I think we had a team that could have had a shot at the championship if our luck had been better," explained Shepherd. "The team is capable of having a chance to win at almost every race we go to. When you get things together like that, then you need luck on your side. The key to winning the championship is having better luck than the other guys." AGATE

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- The fastest laps* recorded in Ford NASCAR Winston Cup stock car testing Friday at the 2.5-mile Daytona International Speedway:

Dale Jarrett        191.898 mph
Morgan Shepherd     191.042
Rick Mast           189.394
Steve Kinser        189.354
Jeff Burton         188.482
Derrike Cope        188.285
Ritchie Petty       187.774
Davy Jones          187.774
Shawna Robinson     187.613
Ken Bouchard        185.414

* = Randomly hand-timed and from various sources.