No. 9 pit crew finishes first at Darlington II

Elliott's pit crew becomes first four-time winner of the McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship Fueled by Powerade. The inaugural McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERade has paid out $500,000 to pit crews during the first 25 ...

Elliott's pit crew becomes first four-time winner of the McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship Fueled by Powerade.

The inaugural McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERade has paid out $500,000 to pit crews during the first 25 NASCAR Winston Cup races of the 2003 season.

Leading the prize money list is the pit crew for Bill Elliott's team, which swiped its fourth victory of the season Sunday at the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. Elliott's crew has earned $80,000 ($20,000 for each win) and is the first four-time winner of the championship that recognizes and awards the unsung heroes of the sport.

Elliott's car, which finished fifth in the Darlington race, spent the least amount time on pit road for participating teams. The No. 9 Dodge was off the track for 469.770 seconds, edging Bobby Labonte's Interstate Batteries Chevrolet that spent 470.354 seconds on pit road. Third was Elliott Sadler's Ford at 471.403.

"With the level of competition the way it is now you shoot to spend as little time on pit road as possible," said Elliott's crew chief Mike Ford. "That's a combination of your driver, calling the race and your pit stops. Your goal is keeping the car on the racetrack and not in the pits."

Elliott's over-the-wall crew consists of: Todd Colburn (jackman), Nick Bailey (front tire carrier), Jim Pohlman (front tire changer), Eric Wakeland (rear tire carrier), Joe Kruschek (rear tire changer), Rodney Rhodes (gasman) and Steve Lawrence (catch can). The team's pit crew coach is Greg Miller.

With 11 races remaining, Michael Waltrip's crew leads the McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship with 912 points, a 53-point lead over the second-place pit crew for Dale Earnhardt Jr. Elliott's team, which did not join the program until the fifth race of the season, is ninth with 777 points. The season pit crew champion will receive a $200,000 bonus.

During each 2003 NASCAR Winston Cup points event, the participating team whose car spends the least amount of aggregate time off the race track will be named the weekly winner of the McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERADE, provided the team's driver takes the green flag at the beginning of the event and the checkered flag at the conclusion of the event. A timing line at the entrance and exit of pit road triggers the car's transponder and records the total time spent off the race track.

The point distribution per race is: 43 for first place, descending in increments of one.

The McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERADE is the largest monetary contingency program in NASCAR history.

<pre> Top 10 Pit Crews For Participating Teams In Sunday's (Aug. 31) Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway

                                Time            Car #
1. Bill Elliott Team            469.770 Seconds 9
2. Bobby Labonte Team           470.354         18
3. Elliott Sadler Team          471.403         38
4. Dale Earnhardt Jr. Team      472.043         8
5. Jamie McMurray Team          472.806         42
6. Greg Biffle Team             474.394         16
7. Kurt Busch Team              475.161         97
8. Jeff Burton Team             518.381         99
9. Jeff Green Team              532.100         1
10. Steve Park Team             543.187         30

2003 Winners of The McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERade: Race Team Winner Daytona (2/16) Michael Waltrip Team Rockingham (2/23) Dave Blaney Team Las Vegas (3/2) Dale Earnhardt Jr. Team Atlanta (3/9) Dale Earnhardt Jr. Team Darlington (3/16) Jeff Green Team (RCR) Bristol (3/23) Bill Elliott Team Texas (3/30) Robby Gordon Team Talladega (4/6) Bill Elliott Team Martinsville (4/13) Bobby Labonte Team California (4/27) Bobby Labonte Team Richmond (5/3) Jeff Burton Team Charlotte (5/25) Dale Jarrett Team Dover (6/1) Michael Waltrip Team Pocono (6/8) Todd Bodine Team Michigan (6/15) Sterling Marlin Team Sonoma (6/22) Robby Gordon Team Daytona (7/5) Jeff Burton Team Chicago (7/13) Michael Waltrip Team New Hampshire (7/20) Bill Elliott Team Pocono (7/27) Dale Earnhardt Jr. Team Indianapolis (8/3) Kurt Busch Team Watkins Glen (8/10) Elliott Sadler Team Michigan (8/17) Greg Biffle Team Bristol (8/23) Kurt Busch Team Darlington (8/31) Bill Elliott Team

Point Standings For NASCAR Winston Cup Teams Participating In The McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERADE: (following Darlington 8/31/03; pit crew wins in parentheses)

Pos.   Car #    Pit Crew of                             Points
1       15      Michael Waltrip Team (3)                912
2        8      Dale Earnhardt Jr. Team (3)             859
3       97      Kurt Busch Team (2)                     853
4       18      Bobby Labonte Team (2)                  831
5       31      Robby Gordon Team (2)                   824
6       40      Sterling Marlin Team (1)                788
7       16      Greg Biffle Team (1)                    785
8       38      Elliott Sadler Team (1)                 784
9        9      Bill Elliott Team (4)                   777
10      42      Jamie McMurray Team                     765
11      77      Dave Blaney Team (1)                    762
12      20      Tony Stewart Team                       743
13      88      Dale Jarrett Team (1)                   737
14      99      Jeff Burton Team (2)                    735
15      30      Steve Park Team (1)                     727
16       1      Jeff Green Team                         726
17      54      Todd Bodine Team (1)                    711
18      21      Ricky Rudd Team                         705
19       7      Jimmy Spencer Team                      698
20      41      Casey Mears Team                        696
21      01      Jerry Nadeau Team                       681
22      74      Tony Raines Team                        661
23      45      Kyle Petty Team                         643
24       0      Jason Leffler Team                      623
25      43      Christian Fittipaldi Team               584
26      49      Kenny Schrader Team                     583
27      14      Larry Foyt Team                         306
28      11      Brett Bodine Team                       144
29      09      Phoenix Racing                          122
30      37      Derrick Cope Team                       94
31      02      Hermie Sadler Team                      81
32      57      Kevin Lepage Team                       76
33     150      A.J. Foyt Racing                        64
T34     66      Hideo Fukuyama Team                     46
T34     33      (Andy Petree car owner)                 46

*joined program at fifth race of season - Darlington, 3/16

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Brett Bodine , Jeff Burton , Bill Elliott , Dale Jarrett , Bobby Labonte , Tony Stewart , Michael Waltrip , Todd Bodine , Steve Park , Jason Leffler , Kyle Petty , Jimmy Spencer , Greg Biffle , Jeff Green , Kevin Lepage , Sterling Marlin , Robby Gordon , Jerry Nadeau , Kurt Busch , Casey Mears , Christian Fittipaldi , Larry Foyt , Tony Raines , Jamie McMurray , Hermie Sadler , Derrick Cope , Andy Petree , Hideo Fukuyama , Elliott Sadler , Dave Blaney , A.J. Foyt
Teams Phoenix Racing