GARGOYLES 300 PRE-RACE NOTES Tuesday, Feb. 11, 1997 -- Daytona International Speedway STEVE PARK (No. 3 ACDelco/Burger King Chevrolet) -- "At first driving for Dale Earnhardt was a little intimidating -- anything with Dale Earnhardt is a...
GARGOYLES 300 PRE-RACE NOTES Tuesday, Feb. 11, 1997 -- Daytona International Speedway
STEVE PARK (No. 3 ACDelco/Burger King Chevrolet) -- "At first driving for Dale Earnhardt was a little intimidating -- anything with Dale Earnhardt is a little intimidating! Teresa (Earnhardt) is really our car owner, and she's been fantastic. Dale's been a great teacher for me. Being a rookie, it's great to have Dale to fall back on. Teresa and Dale provide us with the best stuff we need to run well, and we're just proud to be here, racing at Daytona for our first time. It's a pretty big event to start driving for Dale Earnhhardt. I've been coming to Daytona for many years with my dad (NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour veteran Bob Park) and this is my first opportunity to come down and compete. That's a little intimidating, too. Daytona is a big race track. We had the opportunity to test here and Talladega to get me used to the speeds, and right now I'm comfortable -- the guys have done a great job getting me comfortable in the car."
JEFF PURVIS (No. 4 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet) -- "We were planning on also running our Winston Cup car at Daytona, but it just didn't run good in testing, so we decided to park it. Running both races is not that hard on me, but it's hard on the crew. There's only six people -- total -- down there at the shop, and trying to run all those races is tough. They ran the ARCA car (Andy Hillenburg won in the car owned by James Finch), but it makes it a little easier on the crew. It makes no difference to me -- I just get to drive a little more. Last year was the first time I ran all the Busch Grand National points races, and I see each and every race as being very important when it comes down to the end. It's real important to get off to a good start and try and stay there. Running both races last year helped us with a few things at Daytona, but it hurt us down the road in the long run. We're going to try to win each race when we get to them, and let it fall where it may."
RON BARFIELD (No. 94 New Holland Ford) -- "Running in the ARCA 200 Sunday will help me in the Gargoyles 300 because I will kind of know what to expect on the race track with these tires. I think the biggest thing is getting in the show -- you've got to qualify before you get to run this race. There's a lot of different things between the Busch Grand National car and the ARCA car. You don't have as much horsepower here, and you can soften up the springs to qualify. When race time comes, you throw all the qualifying stuff out and it will be like last Sunday (he finished second to Andy Hillenburg). We really ran good in the draft in the ARCA 200 and I learned a lot. I'm just tickled to be back here for this weekend."
ELLIOTT SADLER (No. 29 Diamond Ridge Motorsports Chevrolet) -- This is very big -- my first time at Daytona when I wasn't a spectator. Being on this side of the fence is really a rush. I've always had the dream to race here. I remember sitting on the living room floor with my brother (Hermie Sadler) when we were kids, dreaming that someday we'd both be racing here. Hermie's already done it. Hopefully, on Saturday, I'll be doing it, too."
LYNDON AMICK (Dodge Reliance Pontiac) -- (Lyndon Amick won the 1996 Discount Auto Parts 200 and went on to capture the NASCAR Goody's Dash Series championship. At age 19, he is the second-youngest NASCAR champion and became the youngest driver to win a stock car race at Daytona.) "It's a big step and I'm real excited, but we're stepping up into a whole different league. The cars are a lot harder to driver -- more motor, different tires -- but I'm adapting pretty quick. I've got a good feel for the track. I'd hate to see where we'd be if I hadn't been here before."