Dale Jarrett carries a 257-point lead in the point standings as he prepares for this weekend's NAPA AutoCare 500 at the Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. Jarrett, driver of the No. 88 Quality Care Service/Ford Credit Taurus, got his first start at this...
Dale Jarrett carries a 257-point lead in the point standings as he prepares for this weekend's NAPA AutoCare 500 at the Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. Jarrett, driver of the No. 88 Quality Care Service/Ford Credit Taurus, got his first start at this track 15 years ago (4/29/84). Jarrett, then 27, started 24th and finished 14th. Since then, Jarrett has earned four top-five finishes at Martinsville (best finish - fifth in 1993 in this race). Earlier this year, Jarrett started 31st and finished eighth. In this particular race in 1998, Jarrett started 10th and finished 42nd.
In 1999, Jarrett has collected four wins (Richmond, Michigan-June, Daytona-July and Indianapolis-Brickyard 400), 20 top-five finishes and 22 top-10s. He has led 763 laps. The following are his thoughts and comments on this weekend's race at Martinsville:
Your thoughts on why there have been 11 different winners in this race? "I think it's the competition is just that good now that if somebody hits on something for a particular race and is able to get good track position at the end of the race, then they're setting themselves up for a good finish or win. When you get on short tracks handling is the main focus. Other situations don't come into play, like aero packages or engine combinations. So you bring more people into the mix and that allows more opportunities for others to win. "I guess if you sit down and look anywhere can get you. But of the tracks we have left on the schedule Martinsville and Talladega are those I consider the most unpredictable. We're trying to knock these races down one by one. As each week goes by and we can finish in the top five, then we feel better about our chances. We're going to keep doing the things that we know how to do - and that is to be consistent each week. We have to try and continue to win and when we can't win, we have to leave with a top five.