Martin, No. 01 Car go way back
Martin piloted No. 01 Chevrolet in 1983 World 600
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Jan. 12, 2007) -- Mark Martin will start this year's Budweiser Shootout (Feb. 10) in the No. 01 U.S. Army Chevrolet, marking the first time in 19 years he will drive a car other than the No. 6 in a Cup event.
However, what many may not realize is that while this will be Martin's first race with Ginn Racing and his first race with the Army on board, it will not be his first Cup event in the No. 01 Chevrolet.
In fact, Martin's history with the No. 01 goes back 24 years, even further back than Martin's history in the No. 6 Roush car. Martin started 16 Cup races in 1983, the 10th of which was at Charlotte, where he ran the No. 01 Activision Chevrolet. A humble beginning in the car, Martin started the race 20th and finished 29th after getting caught up in an accident.
"The car was actually owned by Emanuel Zerakis," said Martin. Emanuel was a great guy and I knew that he had a good car. Lowe's has always been one of my favorite tracks, and I needed a ride. Humpy Wheeler and the guys from the Speedway actually helped get the sponsorship together with Emanuel and Activision, which was the sponsor. So we called them and were able to put it all together.
"As for the race, we started 20th, but we crashed Lap 270. We made around $1700, which was big money back in those days, especially for wrecking. I guess when you think about it, it's kind of ironic that we'll be going back to the 01 this year. Of course, we'll be expecting to finish a lot better this time."
More than 20 years later, Martin ironically returns to the No. 01 where he looks to forge a new legacy in the latest chapter of his storied career.