Top Five Go For 2000 Championship

Tinton Falls, NJ- When the True Value International Race of Champions stages its final race of this year's series on August 4 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, all twelve drivers will be racing for the coveted victory at Indy. Mathematically,...

Tinton Falls, NJ- When the True Value International Race of Champions stages its final race of this year's series on August 4 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, all twelve drivers will be racing for the coveted victory at Indy. Mathematically, five of the twelve are also in contention for the 2000 True Value IROC championship including NASCAR Winston Cup drivers Dale Earnhardt, Mark Martin, Tony Stewart, Bobby Labonte, and Indy Racing Northern Light series representative, Eddie Cheever, Jr.

The 1999 titlist, Dale Earnhardt is the current points leader followed by four-time IROC champion Mark Martin. Martin has won both True Value IROC at Indy events since the series started running its final race at the famed Brickyard in 1998.

Tony Stewart and Bobby Labonte are hungry for their first Indy win. A victory, accompanied by a championship, would be especially sweet for Rushville, Indiana native, Stewart who first competed in the 1998 IROC as the inaugural Indy Racing League champion of 1996-'97. Bobby Labonte garnered his first True Value IROC win this past April in round two at Talladega Superspeedway. Stewart, and NASCAR teammate, Labonte enter into the finale tied in the points battle for third. Stewart is listed third, and Labonte fourth, as a result of Stewart's higher finishing position in the most recent event at Michigan.

Rounding out the hunt for the 2000 True Value IROC crown is the 1998 Indianapolis 500 winner, Eddie Cheever, Jr., who stunned the stock car competition this past June with a dominate win in round three competition at Michigan Speedway. Cheever, Jr., in his second year of competition, would like to be the first open-wheeler to coup a True Value IROC crown since Al Unser Jr., the championship in 1988.

Also competing in the 2000 series is the 1999 NASCAR Winston Cup champion, Dale Jarrett along with fellow NASCAR drivers Jeff Burton, Jeff Gordon, Rusty Wallace and 1999 NASCAR Busch Grand National series champion, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. The Indy Racing Northern Light Series is also represented by Mark Dismore and the 1999 series champion, Greg Ray.

ABC Sports will broadcast the True Value IROC at Indy finale on Saturday, August 5, at 4:30 p.m. immediately following the NASCAR Brickyard 400 coverage.

<pre> STARTING LINEUP - TRUE VALUE IROC AT INDY - RACE FOUR FINALE ROW ONE CAR DRIVER REPRESENTING POINTS 1 12 Mark Dismore Indy Racing Northern Light Series 11 2 11 Greg Ray Indy Racing Northern Light Series 18 ROW TWO 3 10 Rusty Wallace NASCAR Winston Cup 21 4 9 Dale Earnhardt Jr. NASCAR Busch Series 23 ROW THREE 5 8 Jeff Gordon NASCAR Winston Cup 23 6 7 Dale Jarrett NASCAR Winston Cup 24 ROW FOUR 7 6 Jeff Burton NASCAR Winston Cup 32 8 5 Eddie Cheever Jr. Indy Racing Northern Light Series 38 ROW FIVE 9 4 Bobby Labonte NASCAR Winston Cup 43 10 3 Tony Stewart NASCAR Winston Cup 43 ROW SIX 11 2 Mark Martin NASCAR Winston Cup 45 12 1 Dale Earnhardt NASCAR Winston Cup 57

Note: Starting order determined by reverse order of points. Car numbers reflect driver's current position in IROC point standings.

Car Colors: Determined by blind draw the week of the event.

Prize Money: The total True Value IROC purse of $760,000 will be paid upon conclusion of the series based on point standings. The series Champion will earn $225,000.

The True Value International Race of Champions is a four-race series featuring twelve of the world's top drivers from different types of racing, in identically prepared Pontiac Firebird Trans Ams. The four 100-mile events take place at different tracks with no pit stops, no qualifying and no driver setup of the cars, which run on Goodyear Eagle radial tires and are specially finished with brilliant DuPont ChromaSystem(TM) colors.

True Value is the world's largest hardware and home center retailer with more than 5,500 locations worldwide, representing annual retail sales of more than $14 billion. True Value's racing involvement includes a 16-year history with IROC as well as involvement with NASCAR. Additional information on True Value and individual True Value locations is available at www.truevalue.com.

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Series IROC
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Jeff Burton , Jeff Gordon , Dale Jarrett , Bobby Labonte , Tony Stewart , Rusty Wallace , Greg Ray , Eddie Cheever , Al Unser Jr. , Mark Dismore , Mark Martin