RACING AT DAYTONA "It's hard to believe that it's already July and we're back at Daytona. We did pretty well in February for our first time together and my first time in a Dodge. We had a good run in the 125. We were up there for awhile. In the...
RACING AT DAYTONA
"It's hard to believe that it's already July and we're back at Daytona. We did pretty well in February for our first time together and my first time in a Dodge. We had a good run in the 125. We were up there for awhile. In the 500, we got caught up in a wreck. That's the way it goes sometimes, especially at places like Daytona. You could be running great all day and just find yourself in the wrong place at the wrong time. We feel pretty good going back. You always want to have a strong run at Daytona. It can give you some momentum going into the second half of the season."
FOURTH OF JULY
"The Pepsi 400 has always been kind of a big race. It's the Fourth of July and all of that. People are on vacation and it's a big weekend. Plus, it's a night race. Those are always big. The fans love them, so that makes it fun for us. You generally have a lot of sponsor events going on as well. I've got some things I'll be doing with Mountain Dew because Pepsi is sponsoring the race. It's just a big weekend. It always is in Daytona."
STATS & FACTS
* This weekend's race marks Mayfield's 254th career start in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series. In 17 career starts at Daytona International Speedway, Mayfield's best finish (third) came in the 1998 Daytona 500. His best start at the racetrack was third at the Daytona 500 in 1999. Overall, Mayfield has two top-five (1998a,b) and four top-10 (1997a, 1998a,b, 2001b) finishes at Daytona International Speedway. His most recent start at Daytona came in February, where he started 28th, but left the race early due to an accident. He finished in 39th position.
* At the last Winston Cup race on June 23 at Sears Point, Mayfield qualified 26th at the two-mile road coarse. He would be forced to start in the rear of the field in 42nd place after the Dew Crew changed engines after Saturday's final practice. He would work his way steadily through traffic and midway through the race, he had moved up to the 22nd spot. Mayfield opted to stay out during the final caution and found himself in the fifth spot. The gamble on fuel nearly paid off with a top 10 finish. Mayfield, however, was forced to bring his No. 19 Dodge Intrepid R/T into the pits on the final lap for fuel. He would end the day in 28th place.
* Mayfield's last start at Daytona came in February at the Daytona 500. He started that day at the 28th spot. Mayfield was patiently waiting to make his move and was progressing on the track with the No. 19 Dodge Dealers Intrepid R/T before the"big one" came. After starting with a tight handling car, Mayfield felt it was improving with each pit stop. The Kentucky native had come in on lap 139 for what was scheduled to be the final time when he was caught up in the 18-car melee 10 laps later. Mayfield finished the day in 39th place. In last year's Pepsi 400 at Daytona, Mayfield started in the 41st position and made out with a strong 17th place finish.
* After his finish at Sears Point, Mayfield fell one position to 26th place in the Winston Cup points. Mayfield is 207 points out of 20th place. His season-high ranking this year was 16th, which he reached after an 11th place finish at Martinsville. Mayfield's best overall finish in the Winston Cup points race came in 1998 when he ranked seventh at the season's end.
* Mayfield's second-place run this year at Las Vegas was his best run at the track and his best overall finish since the 2000 Pennzoil 400 at Homestead-Miami where he finished second. The finish also qualified Mayfield for the Winston No Bull 5 $1 million bonus during the May race in Charlotte.
* Coming into the 2002 season, Mayfield had 237 starts, with six poles (two at Talladega and one at Darlington, Dover, Rockingham, and Texas), three wins (two at Pocono, and one at California), 33 top-fives and 58 top-10s. His most recent win came at Pocono in June of 2000.