Bristol II: Michael Waltrip preview

Michael Waltrip will compete in his 38th NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway (BMS) on Saturday night where he will look for his ninth top-10 run and his second top-five run at the high-banked .533-mile speedway. His best finish was...

Michael Waltrip will compete in his 38th NASCAR NEXTEL Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway (BMS) on Saturday night where he will look for his ninth top-10 run and his second top-five run at the high-banked .533-mile speedway. His best finish was fifth - in 1994, but Waltrip registered a 10-place finish in this year's Food City 500 in March kicking off a string of top-10 runs this summer for the No. 15 NAPA AUTO PARTS team. Waltrip also won the NASCAR Busch Series event at BMS last August.

This Week's Race Car is Chassis #22. The car ran twice this year securing top-10s in both efforts. Chassis #22 last raced as the back-up car in Dover, Delaware in June where it placed sixth and raced at Bristol in March finishing 10th. The car has not been tested or been to the wind tunnel since it last raced.

One Year ago at BMS Waltrip qualified third for the 2003 Sharpie 500 and ran consistently in the top-five until the NAPA car was involved in an accident causing caution number four of a total of 20 cautions. The wreck involved Waltrip's Dale Earnhardt, Inc. teammate Jeff Green and veteran Rusty Wallace.

"I was on the inside of Jeff [Green] and I thought I was in deep enough that he would back off of the position," Waltrip said. "He didn't back down and my front left tire got caught on the apron, which caused me to get sideways and spin out. Rusty was trying to avoid me, but as I slid down the racetrack he hit me. It was a hard hit for both of us. I hate it for Rusty and for our whole team." Waltrip finished 42nd.

BMS Memories Waltrip is always ready to return to Bristol motor Speedway as it holds many special memories for Waltrip, most significantly a Busch Series win in 1993 where he also proposed in Victory Lane to wife, Buffy of almost 11 years. Waltrip also did a Polish victory lap in honor of Alan Kulwicki.

-dei/napa-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Rusty Wallace , Michael Waltrip , Jeff Green , Alan Kulwicki