Daytona Pepsi Mark Martin Gets New Car

Martin to get new car for Daytona DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Oct. 13, 1998) The Valvoline Ford crew has been busy this week preparing a new car for the Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway. The team planned on using the same car at Talladega...

Martin to get new car for Daytona

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Oct. 13, 1998) The Valvoline Ford crew has been busy this week preparing a new car for the Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway. The team planned on using the same car at Talladega and Daytona, but there was not enough time to repair the damage caused in the multi-car accident on lap 136 at Talladega.

Not only did the team lose a good race car, but Mark Martin lost 114 points in his championship battle with Jeff Gordon. Martin remains second in the standings, but now trails Gordon by 288 points.

"I really wish we didn't have another restrictor-plate race this week," Martin said. "I don't know how our new car will perform at Daytona. The car we had at Talladega was decent, but the new car has never even been tested. We've taken it to the wind tunnel, but that's about it. We had this spare car ready to go just in case we wrecked at Talladega. We've managed to start from the back and go to the front in these races before, and if we have to, we'll do it again."

The Pepsi 400 will be the first series race ever to be held under the lights at Daytona. The race was originally scheduled to be run on July 4, but was postponed due to the wildfires in Florida.

Martin's best start at Daytona came in 1989 when he won the pole for the Pepsi 400. He has never won at the 2.5-mile superspeedway. His best finish was a third place in the 1995 Daytona 500. Daytona is one of only four active tracks on the circuit where Martin has not won in his career with Roush Racing.

"I would love to win at Daytona since I consider it my home track," Martin said. "Maybe running under the lights will bring us some luck since we've won two night races already (The Winston and Bristol). We've had a great season, no matter what happens in the last four races.

"Everybody acts like if we don't win the championship we haven't done anything this year. I won't be disappointed if we don't win the championship because I have had the greatest season of my career this year. We don't expect much turnover on the team, so we should be even stronger next year. This is not over yet -- a lot can happen in four races."

Source: NASCAR Online

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeff Gordon , Mark Martin