Jarrett looks for first Southern 500 win. DARLINGTON, S.C., August 27, 2002 --- Darlington Raceway's "Southern 500" is NASCAR's oldest Winston Cup Series event. The track that's "too tough to tame" has been entertaining auto racing fans for more...
Jarrett looks for first Southern 500 win.
DARLINGTON, S.C., August 27, 2002 --- Darlington Raceway's "Southern 500" is NASCAR's oldest Winston Cup Series event. The track that's "too tough to tame" has been entertaining auto racing fans for more than 50 years with its annual Labor Day race. Dale Jarrett hopes to leave Darlington Raceway with his first career win in the "Southern 500," allowing him to follow in the footsteps of his father, Ned, who won the historic event by 14 laps in 1965. The annual racing event is scheduled to start at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 1st, with TNT providing live racing coverage beginning at 12:30 p.m. EST.
Winning The Southern 500 Would Add To Jarrett's Resume Darlington Raceway has been the site of great victory and agonizing heartbreak for Jarrett and his #88 Robert Yates Racing team. Darlington has been a consistent track for the #88 UPS Racing team as they have won three races and scored eight top fives at the track since 1997. Each of the three wins has taken place during Darlington's spring race, leaving the spots under the Southern 500 win column empty. The "Southern 500" is a race Jarrett watched his champion father, Ned, win on several occasions, and is a race the younger Jarrett would like to win before he calls it quits on his racing career.
"I think the biggest thing for me when it comes to Darlington is the challenge it presents," Jarrett said. "It's so totally different. Each end of the track is so different and you have to drive both ends totally different. It's a difficult task to negotiate Darlington for 500 miles for a number of reasons. First the track is difficult and it's still mid-summer this time of the year there and you can expect it to be 150 degrees in the racecar.
"It would be the ultimate to me to be able to win the Southern 500 and to have that victory on my resume before I call it quits," Jarrett added. "I've won big races, but I haven't won that race. I can remember back to that day in 1965 when my dad won the Southern 500. It was one of the top races. When I was a kid I listed to people like my dad, Richard Petty, Cale Yarborough and David Pearson talk about winning that race. So, I always knew from an early age that it was something I wanted to win."
In the attempt to win their first "Southern 500," Jarrett and the #88 UPS Racing team will take the same car they won with at Pocono in June and Michigan just two weeks ago.
"We sometimes get accused of not making real smart moves when it comes to taking cars to the track," Jarrett grinned. "But we know what a good thing we have with this car. It is a very good racecar and it runs well everywhere we've raced it this year, so we are taking the Michigan car."