CHARLOTTE, N.C., (June 7, 2000) - Kenny Wallace, driver of the Square D/ Cooper Lighting Chevrolet, posted a season-high 18th place finish in Sunday's MBNA Platinum 400 at Dover (Del.) Downs International Speedway. "The Square D/Cooper Lighting...
CHARLOTTE, N.C., (June 7, 2000) - Kenny Wallace, driver of the Square D/ Cooper Lighting Chevrolet, posted a season-high 18th place finish in Sunday's MBNA Platinum 400 at Dover (Del.) Downs International Speedway.
"The Square D/Cooper Lighting Chevrolet was real consistent today," said Wallace. "It stayed strong after every pit stop. We had a better car than an 18th place finish. We were passing people on the outside all day, and that's pretty impressive at Dover. Unfortunately, we were loose in the beginning, and that put us down a few laps. But once the boys got our Chevy dialed in, I wanted the race to stay green forever. I would've driven till midnight if they'd let me.
"I don't know what our boys in the pits did last week, but they have those pit stops going," said Wallace. "They must have had their Wheaties because they were wicked fast, especially on those left sides."
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Michigan Speedway, site of Sunday's Kmart 400, is like a three-prong fork in the road to victory lane. Which road will NASCAR Winston Cup Series drivers and crew chiefs take to a win at Michigan? Many teams have many different theories. Will it be the Horsepower Highway or Fuel Mileage Avenue? Maybe it's the Pit Strategy Parkway that will lead their team to success. Each decision can produce a Winston Cup win. This week, Kenny Wallace, driver of the Square D/Cooper Lighting Chevrolet, is taking the highway.
"Horsepower is the most important tangible to have at Michigan," said Wallace. "I would rather get beat on fuel mileage than not run well. It's very important to go up there with a good handling package because that's the type of racing that Michigan demands.
"Fuel efficiency is still going to be a factor," added Wallace. "There are a handful of drivers who have worked that to their advantage, and it's an issue that drivers need to be aware of. We found something in testing that I can do to help us save some fuel. Still, the most important thing at Michigan is horsepower and handling."
To further complicate issues, Michigan is a wide race track that gives drivers many angles to choose from as they enter the turns. That means, competitors also have to consider which line to us as they circle the two-mile oval.
"The fast one," answered Wallace, when asked which line he would take. "Right down the middle of the race track seems to be the fastest line. You enter high, go through the middle of the corner, and come out at the bottom of the turn. That's where you're going to pass everybody in the race. That's where Mark Martin has been strong throughout the years, and that's how Dale Jarrett dominated last year's race.
"You never want to go to a single-line race track," continued Wallace. "If you ask your race car to handle in just one area, and you miss the setup, you're history. One thing I like about Michigan is that if your car is off a little bit, you can move around and find an angle that matches your race car. Then, you can really work with the race car if everything is not perfect."
<pre> Kenny Wallace's Michigan Performance Profile ------------ Year Event Start Finish Status/Laps Earnings 1999 Kmart 400 19 21 Running/198 $30,055 Pepsi 400 23 27 Running/199 $25,140 1998 Miller Lite 400 23 39 Running/194 $18,880 1997 Miller 400 33 43 Engine/1 $21,780 ITW DeVilbiss 400 44 32 Running/198 $22,640 1996 Miller 400 16 33 Running/192 $10,385 Goodwrench 400 13 37 Accident/84 $13,690 1995 Miller 400 33 36 Engine/78 $9,900 Goodwrench 400 10 24 Running/196 $10,915 1994 Miller 400 22 19 Running/198 $9,825 1993 Miller 400 33 29 Running/196 $9,965 Champion 400 14 23 Running/199 $10,565