Barber trained racers put the ROCK in Rockingham

Skip Barber trained racers picked up where they left off last season: dominating NASCAR races. The troika of Steve Park, Bobby Labonte and Jeff Gordon celebrated a 1-2-3 finish at the rain-delayed Dura-Lube 400 at North Carolina Speedway. The race...

Skip Barber trained racers picked up where they left off last season: dominating NASCAR races. The troika of Steve Park, Bobby Labonte and Jeff Gordon celebrated a 1-2-3 finish at the rain-delayed Dura-Lube 400 at North Carolina Speedway. The race was restarted after only 51 laps had been completed on rain-plagued Sunday. Park led 167 of the requisite 393 laps en route to his second career win.

He'll be the first to tell you it wasn't easy. Park held off a furious charge from Labonte over the last four laps. Labonte, winner of last season's Winston Cup Championship, made a late move on Jeff Gordon with about 30 laps to go and advanced to P2 by picking off the three-time champion with about 15 to go.

Park's win comes just eight days after his car owner, Dale Earnhardt, was killed in a last-lap accident in the Daytona 500.

“It’s so great to win this one for Dale,” Park said. “(DEI is) 2-for-2, and we’re goin’ for three at Vegas.”

Labonte had fresher tires than Park, but Park maintained the high line that he’d used effectively all day to fend off the charge.

“This was a great race for us,” Labonte said. “Me and (Gordon) wore out our tires. There at end we just got a good run. I got up on outside, and both of us were slippin’ and sliding, and I got up in fence with right rear. It was hard to get good bite up off corner.

“I’d just like to say this: Last year, Earnhardt finished second to me. He came by before the race started and told me what to do. That helped me win. It didn’t help me win today, but (that same information) sure helped me get second.”

- Andrew Torres

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Jeff Gordon , Bobby Labonte , Steve Park , Skip Barber