MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Coming off his first victory of the 2000 season, ...
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Coming off his first victory of the 2000 season, #24 Team GMAC driver Jack Sprague is saying his A-B-C's, as in anything but complacent, anything but content.
Sprague understands that championships are won race by race and battle by battle. Some items of note for the two-time and defending champion as he heads into Saturday's Quaker State 200 at Memphis Motorsports Park (ESPN: 3 p.m. EDT):
¨ After last Sunday's win at Gateway International Raceway, Sprague has posted six finishes of top three or better since the season-opening event at Daytona (Feb. 18) when he was collected in a crash not of his own doing.
¨ The win at Gateway was the 17th of Sprague's stellar career. That's tops among all active NCTS drivers and second on the all-time series ledger.
¨ Nobody boasts a better average finish at Gateway than Sprague (2.67).
¨ #24 Team GMAC crew chief Dennis Connor is now the winningest crew chief in the six-year history of the series. His 17 victories, with at least one win in each of the past five seasons, pushed him past Rich Burgess on the all-time win list.
¨ Sprague's victory at Gateway also helped team owner Rick Hendrick move up the career victory ladder. Hendrick surged past Jack Roush and took over third place on the all-time list. Hendrick, who has 18 career NCTS wins (Terry Labonte won in 1995 in addition to Sprague's 17 career conquests), joins Jim and Marlene Smith as the only owner to win a race in every year of NCTS competition.
¨ Looking ahead to Saturday, Sprague is the only NCTS competitor to post top-10 finishes in both previous races at Memphis Motorsports Park. The 35-year-old Michigan native was ninth in this event last year.
SPRAGUE'S THOUGHTS HEADING INTO THE QUAKER STATE 200:
"IT FEELS GREAT TO GET THAT FIRST ONE UNDER OUR BELTS," SPRAGUE SAID. "(CREW CHIEF) DENNIS (CONNOR) AND THE REST OF THIS TEAM GMAC CREW AND I HAVE HEARD A LOT ABOUT 'WHEN ARE YOU GONNA WIN AGAIN?' LATELY, SO IT'S NICE TO PUT THAT TO REST FOR AWHILE."
ADDED SPRAGUE, "IT HAD ONLY BEEN SIX RACES SINCE OUR LAST WIN (IN THE '99 SEASON FINALE AT CALIFORNIA), BUT FOR SOME REASON FOLKS HAD THE IMPRESSION IT WAS LONGER. WINNING RACES DOES MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE TO BREED CONFIDENCE AS YOU GO FROM WEEK TO WEEK AND THAT'S OUR ONLY FOCUS NOW FOR MEMPHIS. BELIEVE ME, TEAM GMAC IS NOT SATISFIED WITH ONE WIN AND WE'LL COME OUT DIGGING JUST AS HARD ON SATURDAY."
Memphis Motorsports Park (0.75 miles)
Year Event Start Finish Laps Money Won Status 1999 Memphis 200 4 9 200/200 $9,350 Running 1998 Memphis 200 15 9 200/200 9,475 Running