ROUSH SWEEPS, NEVER BEFORE WINNING POCONO CONCORD, N.C. (July 26, 2005) - Roush Racing has officially swept Pocono. At one of the few tracks where Jack Roush had never won before, he and his organization got a pleasant surprise this season: a...
ROUSH SWEEPS, NEVER BEFORE WINNING POCONO
CONCORD, N.C. (July 26, 2005) - Roush Racing has officially swept Pocono. At one of the few tracks where Jack Roush had never won before, he and his organization got a pleasant surprise this season: a win in both visits. Sunday Kurt Busch got his second win of the season at the Long Pond track to give Jack Roush his second-ever win there, his first coming a month earlier. Busch won in dominating fashion, leading 131 laps as the class of the field.
But before the wins, the closest any Roush driver had come to a victory at Pocono was second, and it happened on many occasions. Mark Martin has by far the most, with six runner-up finishes, the most recent coming in July 2004.
"Things never seemed to fall in place just right for us to win there," Martin says. "But when I look back at Pocono I see 27 top-10 finishes and something like 18 top-fives, so you can't ask for much more than that at a race track."
Former Roush Racing driver Jeff Burton ties Kurt Busch with one runner-up finish, making the total number of second-place finishes for Roush eight.
No victories and eight runner-up finishes over the span of 14 years makes the 2005 sweep all the more satisfying for Jack, since he has been making the trek to the Pocono Mountains for a long time without a win.
"This is our 18th year, our 35th and 36th outing at the Poconos. I've always loved coming up here on the mountains," Roush says. "But we didn't [ever] manage to get it right on the race track. Mark ran second, I think, four times. We had a number of good outings, but we just couldn't quite close the deal."
Until this June when Roush was finally able to close the deal--and with a driver he, nor anyone else, would have ever suspected. Carl Edwards surprised even himself with the victory in the spring race, at a track he had never even seen before the Pocono 500. Edwards overcame a 29th starting position and no experience at the track to dominate the second half of the race and contend with Brian Vickers for the win.
After Busch's win at Pocono Sunday, he remains fifth in the point standings after gaining 63 points on leader Jimmie Johnson. Martin remains in seventh position 309 points back and Biffle is just 87 points out of the championship lead. Edwards and Kenseth are looking in on the Chase, in the 12th and 17th positions respectively.
NEXTEL Cup teams get a well-deserved weekend off before heading to Indianapolis August 7.
Roush Racing is a subsidiary of Livonia, Mich., based Roush Industries that operates 10 motorsports teams; five in NASCAR Nextel Cup with drivers Mark Martin, Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards; three in the Busch Series with Martin, Kenseth and Edwards; and two in the Craftsman Truck Series with drivers Ricky Craven and Todd Kluever.