Bud Shootout Race Story

Mark Martin Captures First Daytona Win At Bud Shootout DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Mark Martin finally won a NASCAR race on his home turf at Daytona International Speedway. Martin, who started 13th in the 15-car field, took the lead after a...

Mark Martin Captures First Daytona Win At Bud Shootout

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Mark Martin finally won a NASCAR race on his home turf at Daytona International Speedway. Martin, who started 13th in the 15-car field, took the lead after a mandatory pit stop and held on to win today's Bud Shootout At Daytona.

"I had a fast race car today," said Martin, a Batesburg, Arkansas native, who now resides in Daytona Beach. "My crew got me out of the pits out in front and we stayed there. What a way to start Speedweeks," added Martin, driver of the Jack Roush-owned Valvoline Ford.

Martin, who has competed in various forms of racing at the 2.5-mile track since 1982, took the lead on lap 10 and held off furious challenges from a host of competitors during the final 15 laps of the 25-lap event. Ken Schrader, a two-time Bud Shootout winner (1989-90), finished 0.215 seconds behind Martin, while Bobby Labonte, Mike Skinner and Jeremy Mayfield completed the top five.

Martin, whose previous best finish in the Bud Shootout of Daytona was second in 1991, averaged 181.745 mph in the race, which featured six lead changes among five drivers. Rick Mast, driver of the No. 98 Budweiser Ford, started the event from the pole position when Rusty Wallace was sent to the back of the grid after missing the drivers' meeting. Mast led eight of the first nine laps before yielding the point to Jeff Gordon on lap nine. Gordon was at the point when he led the field down pit road for a mandatory pit on lap 10. Gordon lost his lead and fell to the back of the pack after incurring a 15-second penalty for crossing the white line of his pit. As a result, he fell a lap behind, then pulled his car into the garage. He finished 15th.

Schrader stayed in the top-five most of the day, but couldn't make a last-lap pass on Martin. "We ran a little more in qualifying mode than you would in 500 mode," said Schrader. "It was good enough to put us in second place. Mark was just plain better than us today."

Skinner qualified for the 15th and final starting position in the Bud Shootout At Daytona with an exciting run in the special 25-lap qualifying race Sunday morning. Skinner, driving the No. 31 Lowe's Chevrolet, advanced from his seventh place starting position in the qualifier to take the lead. He held off Robert Pressley in the No. 77 Jasper Engines Ford and Jimmy Spencer in the No. 23 Winston Ford to advance to the Bud Shootout.

Skinner had a great run in the Bud Shootout, moving from 13th position to the run with the top of the pack. Coming out of the pit, Skinner moved to second position before falling behind to finish fourth. "It just wasn't meant to be for us today," said Skinner after a competitive run in the Bud Shootout. "The car got extremely loose. It was so loose I couldn't drive it. The pit stop was awesome. It hasn't been the day we wanted but it could have been worse."

Tickets are still available for Speedweeks' events, including Thursday's Gatorade 125's. For tickets call the Speedway Ticket Office at (904) 253-RACE.

Source: ISC/DIS

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeff Gordon , Bobby Labonte , Jeremy Mayfield , Rusty Wallace , Mike Skinner , Jimmy Spencer , Robert Pressley , Rick Mast , Jack Roush , Mark Martin