This Week in Ford Racing October 29, 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup Ford Racing won its 15th manufacturer's championship in NASCAR Winston Cup competition on Sunday as Kurt Busch recorded his third win of the season and his second victory in as many ...
This Week in Ford Racing
October 29, 2002
NASCAR Winston Cup
Ford Racing won its 15th manufacturer's championship in NASCAR Winston Cup competition on Sunday as Kurt Busch recorded his third win of the season and his second victory in as many weeks. The championship marks the third time in Taurus' five-year history that Ford has won the manufacturer's top prize, and Ford's depth proved to be a key factor this season as nine of 13 full-time drivers scored points, led by Matt Kenseth, Ryan Newman and Busch. Ford is the only manufacturer to have at least one car finish in the top five of every race and has had only one fourth-place manufacturer finish in the 33 races so far this season.
GREG SPECHT, Manager, North American Racing Operations, Ford Racing Technology
FORD DRIVERS HAVE CAPTURED A SERIES-BEST 12 RACES THIS SEASON, BUT THE HIGHEST FORD DRIVER IS THE POINT STANDINGS IS SECOND. IS SUCCESS MEASURED BY WINNING THE MANUFACTURER OR DRIVER CHAMPIONSHIP?
"We're happy to win the NASCAR Manufacturers' Championship, no question about it. But the primary focus for everyone is the driver's championship. We want to win the team title. We like the driver's championship. It's the same for Winston Cup and all of the series that we participate in. The fan identifies and connects with the driver first, and the connection to the manufacturer is secondary. So while we are making an effort in both areas - we want to win both - we certainly want to make sure that we wrap up the driver's championship."
NINE DIFFERENT DRIVERS CONTRIBUTED TO THE MANUFACTURER'S TITLE.
"It shows the quality of the teams that we have and the quality of the equipment that they run. It demonstrates that the Taurus is obviously a very well-designed race car. The engine that we run there makes very good power and it's very reliable. That's why we are able to have such a diversity of teams and drivers that were able to win this year."
WHAT IS THE IMPORTANCE OF THE MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP TO FORD?
"It provides a tremendous amount of personal pride within the company and among all of us who work on the program. It is important to us. It demonstrates the capability within Ford to design and development a race car that is the best car out there in the most competitive form of racing in the country, if not the world."
THERE IS NO CORRELATION BETWEEN THE POINT SYSTEMS FOR THE DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP AND THE MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP, SO THERE'S THE POSSIBILITY OF DOMINATING THE MANUFACTURER'S RACE AND NOT CAPTURING THE DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP. HOW IS SUCCESS MEASURED FROM THE MANUFACTURER'S SIDE?
"The driver's championship is the more popular of the two and the more noteworthy of the two. We're in racing for two purposes. One is to develop and demonstrate our technical capabilities and that's what the manufacturer's championship demonstrates. But, there's also the marketing and that's to help us sell cars and trucks to our loyal race fans. The fans are just more tuned in to the drivers in Winston Cup and so in order to help us build that loyalty with fans, we need to win more driver's championships, and that's why that is so important from a marketing standpoint."