Daytona II: Sterling Marlin race report

Coors Light Dodge finshes third in Pepsi 400; Marlin remains first in the Winston Cup championship points race. DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 6, 2002) - Sterling Marlin drove the No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Intrepid R/T to a third place finish in the...

Coors Light Dodge finshes third in Pepsi 400; Marlin remains first in the Winston Cup championship points race.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 6, 2002) - Sterling Marlin drove the No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Intrepid R/T to a third place finish in the Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway. For the 16th straight race (Rockingham to Daytona), Marlin remains the leader in the NASCAR Winston Cup championship points standings; he has a 77-point lead over Mark Martin who is currently in second place.

Marlin started the 160-lap event in 20th position but quickly moved up to the top-10 by lap 16. The Coors Light Dodge competed in the top-10 for the remainder of the race. Marlin took over the lead on lap 43, picking up five bonus points in the Winston Cup Championship points race. He continued to keep the Coors Light Dodge out front from lap 43 to 60.

A late race caution on lap151 for debris, lined up the No. 40 Dodge in sixth position with teammate Jimmy Spencer's Dodge in ninth position. Spencer worked with Marlin to move up to third and fourth places respectively before an accident pulled out another caution on lap 157. The race ended under caution with the Ganassi duo finishing third and fourth. Michael Waltrip won the race in the No. 15 NAPA Chevrolet.

"This Coors Light car ran great tonight," Marlin said following the race. "I'm proud of all the guys on the team. They've really worked hard. We did all we could do with what we had. I was hoping the race would go green the rest of the way, but I'd like to thank my teammate Jimmy Spencer. He gave me a hell of a knock down the back straightaway and I was able to pass a bunch of cars.

"I'm glad the race ended under caution. We didn't need a red flag. I didn't want to see one. The man who won the race should have one the race. It was a good decision."

Marlin won the Gatorade Front Runner Award and the Outback Bloomin' Favorite Driver of the Race award following the Pepsi 400.

Next on the schedule for the No. 40 Coors Light team is the Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland Speedway on July 14, 2002.

-cgr-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Michael Waltrip , Jimmy Spencer , Sterling Marlin , Mark Martin