Martinsville II: Dale Jarrett preview

UPS Racing Team Notes of Interest *Dale Jarrett is a former Martinsville Speedway winner, winning the spring race at the half-mile track in 2001. Jarrett finished a close second to Ricky Craven at the track's second race that same ...

UPS Racing Team Notes of Interest

*Dale Jarrett is a former Martinsville Speedway winner, winning the spring race at the half-mile track in 2001. Jarrett finished a close second to Ricky Craven at the track's second race that same season.

*Jarrett has competed in 19 of the fall races that have been run at Martinsville. In 19 events, Jarrett has scored four top-five and nine top-10 finishes.

*Jarrett made his first career start in what is now known as the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series at the Martinsville Speedway on April 29, 1984. Jarrett finished 14th in that event after starting from the 24th position.

Jarrett Discusses Racing at Martinsville Speedway

Although the team has struggled at the bigger tracks, do you feel optimistic about this weekend?

"I probably feel more optimistic about our chances for a win at Martinsville than at the intermediate tracks like Charlotte or Atlanta or Texas. It certainly would mean a lot to be able to win this weekend. These last handful of races, we've been able to put ourselves in position to finish in the top 15 and because of that we've been able to do even a little better than that -- finishing in the top five at Kansas and top 10 at California. That's what we've got to start doing is putting ourselves in a position to run in the top 10 and the top five. This is a place we can do it. Some of the things that we may be struggling with on the bigger tracks don't really come into play at Martinsville. You still need a decent handling race car and a good starting spot goes a long way in helping your outcome in the race especially for pit selection. Martinsville, though, is a short track and it's just hard-nosed racing. This is a place where I feel like we can run in the top five and perhaps put ourselves in contention for the win with the right set of circumstances."

Is qualifying at Martinsville more important than other places the series races?

"It definitely helps. It's a small track and there's not a ton of room for racing. Plus, the last few races there, we've only had a select few spots where you can make passes on other cars. You can win from anywhere but if you have problems in qualifying and have to start in the back it will alter how you approach the race. It will force you to probably change your strategy a little bit at times if you're not starting up front. But, if you've got a good car, though, you can make up for any problems you have in qualifying. We've been in that position the last several years at Martinsville.

-credit: ryr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Dale Jarrett , Ricky Craven