FORT WORTH-DALLAS (March 19, 2001) - Several NASCAR Winston Cup drivers are anxiously looking forward to the Jani-King 300 NASCAR Busch Series race Saturday, March 31, at Texas Motor Speedway. If history repeats itself, there are good reasons for...
FORT WORTH-DALLAS (March 19, 2001) - Several NASCAR Winston Cup drivers are anxiously looking forward to the Jani-King 300 NASCAR Busch Series race Saturday, March 31, at Texas Motor Speedway. If history repeats itself, there are good reasons for these drivers to be excited.
Winston Cup stars Jeff Burton, Matt Kenseth, Joe Nemechek and Kevin Harvick are among those expected to compete in one of the richest and most prestigious Busch Series events of the year. With Texas Busch winners Mark Martin (1997, 1999, 2000) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (1998) concentrating on the Harrah's 500 this year, a new Busch winner is guaranteed.
Burton will be driving for Jack Roush, whose Fords have captured three of the four Busch races at Texas since 1997. Burton finished third in the inaugural Busch race and placed second in 1999, Kenseth was last year's Busch runner-up while Nemechek finished third behind Dale Earnhardt Jr. in 1998.
"I'm looking forward to competing in the Busch race at Texas Motor Speedway," said Burton. "We're bringing with us a new sponsor, Gain Laundry Detergent, so we would sure like to give them a trip to victory lane as a welcome present.
"I've competed in the Busch race at Texas for the past four years, ever since I've been with Roush Racing, and I won my first Winston Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway, so we're pretty comfortable with the track. Hopefully it will be good to us again."
"I really enjoy getting to run both races at Texas," said Kenseth. "In the Busch car, we've run real well at that track. The last two times we were there we've been near the front.
"In '99, we led most of the laps before having a problem. And last year, we finished second. Maybe everything will come together this time at Texas. It's a place we hope to win at this year."
Nemechek is seeking his initial triumph at Texas Motor Speedway. "I'm looking forward to running Texas. We had the top car at Atlanta a couple of weeks ago, and Texas is a similar race track so we're looking to have a good run.
"We're taking the same car back," Nemechek continued. "The setup will be similar, but Texas is a little flatter. It doesn't have the banking of Atlanta, but still it has good grip. You can run a little softer spring.
"It's going to be fast, while it's a flatter track, the asphalt is new so you can really go. It'll be on the edge for sure. I'm looking for our Cellular One/Nortel Networks Chevy to have a good run."
Harvick, the 2000 Busch Series Rookie-of-the-Year, will be another of those doing double duty during the weekend, driving for Richard Childress. Harvick sees opportunities running in both series on consecutive days.
"Right now our goal is to keep racing full-time," said Harvick. "As close as NASCAR has made the motors, it won't be a hindrance. If anything, it will help."
Defending NASCAR Busch Series champion Jeff Green will lead the Busch regulars in the Jani-King 300. Other Busch Series drivers expected to compete for the victory are Randy LaJoie, David Green, Steve Grissom, Tim Fedewa, Jason Keller, Jimmie Johnson, Mike McLaughlin, Jay Sauter, Elton Sawyer, Greg Biffle and Larry Foyt.
Jani-King 300 tickets are available seven days a week at the speedway ticket office, by calling (817) 215-8500, online at www.texasmotorspeedway.com and at Ticketmaster locations. A limited amount of individual tickets are still available for the Harrah's 500 Winston Cup race Sunday, April 1.