Wallace, Bill Davis Racing, honor FDNY through September Winston, MBNA bonuses total $340,000 NEWS & NOTES * Charting the NASCAR Top 10: Earnhardt Jr. picks up some points ... Matt Kenseth has been No. 1 in the NASCAR Top 10 since the ...
Wallace, Bill Davis Racing, honor FDNY through September
Winston, MBNA bonuses total $340,000
NEWS & NOTES
* Charting the NASCAR Top 10: Earnhardt Jr. picks up some points ... Matt Kenseth has been No. 1 in the NASCAR Top 10 since the fourth race of the season (Atlanta, March 9), a run of 24 consecutive race weeks. Dale Earnhardt Jr. continued his eight-week hold on second place, and picked up 14 points on Kenseth following his eighth-place finish at New Hampshire. Ryan Newman (No. 12 ALLTEL Dodge) moved past Jeff Gordon (No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet) into fifth place while Kurt Busch (No. 97 Rubbermaid Ford) gained one spot on Bobby Labonte (No. 18 Interstate Batteries Chevrolet), moving from eighth to seventh, however the two drivers are tied in points with 3,323. Michael Waltrip (No. 15 NAPA Chevrolet) remained in the NASCAR Top 10 in 10th place, but is only 48 points ahead of Tony Stewart (No. 20 Home Depot Chevrolet). Waltrip and New Hampshire victor Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet) are the only two drivers to hold a spot in the NASCAR Top 10 all season. Johnson is in fourth this week.
* MBNA bonus at $60,000 ... The MBNA Mid-Race Leader Award is worth $10,000 to the leader of a race's halfway point (among teams participating in the MBNA contingency award program). MBNA also pays a $5,000 bonus if the halfway-point leader goes on to win the race. If the bonus isn't collected, the $5,000 rolls over to the next event. It would be fitting, then, that the MBNA bonus, which has grown to $60,000 following last week's race, be claimed Sunday at the MBNA America 400. The last time it was collected was at Infineon Raceway in June when Robby Gordon (No. 31 Cingular Wireless Chevrolet) led at mid-race, went on to win and collected the bonus, which was good for $15,000 at Infineon.
* Winston Leader Bonus reaches $280,000 ... After 27 races this season, no one has been able to collect the Winston Leader Bonus, which has increased to $280,000. NASCAR Top 10 leader Matt Kenseth would take home the bonus as well as his first win at Dover International Speedway should he win Sunday. Kenseth is the only driver who can win the bonus this week as it is paid to a race winner who also leads the NASCAR Winston Cup points. The bonus starts at $10,000 and increases in $10,000 increments each week it isn't collected. Sterling Marlin (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge) was the last recipient in March 2001 at Darlington Raceway.
* BDR to carry special decal commemorating Station 23 "The Lion's Den" ... The No. 23 Stacker2 Dodge of Kenny Wallace and Bill Davis Racing will carry a special decal Sunday at Dover to commemorate the fallen firefighters of 9/11 from Station 23 FDNY (Midtown Manhattan), also known as "The Lion's Den." The decal also includes "sister station" 23 Grand Terrace in San Bernardino, Calif., which has adopted "The Lion's Den" name in memory of those Station 23 FDNY firemen who perished. The decal will also be displayed on the No. 23 Stacker2 Dodge driven by Scott Wimmer in the NASCAR Busch Series race on Saturday. Both cars will carry the decal at various events throughout the month of September in remembrance of "The Lion's Den." Wallace carried "The Lion's Den" decal at Richmond and New Hampshire and plans to do so at Talladega.
* Jeff Green in third Petty Enterprises entry ... Jeff Green, who has driven for two different NASCAR Winston Cup teams this season (Richard Childress Racing, Dale Earnhardt Inc.), will drive the No. 43 Cheerios Dodge at Dover this weekend. Christian Fittipaldi, who normally drives the No. 43, will drive the No. 44 Bugles Dodge. Kyle Petty, who has one career win at Dover (1995) will be drive the No. 45 Georgia Pacific Dodge, giving Petty Enterprises three cars at Dover.
ON THE RIGHT TRACK
Ricky Rudd (No. 21 Motorcraft Ford), Jeff Gordon and Bill Elliott (No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge) each have four career victories at Dover International Speedway, more than any other active driver. The record for wins at Dover is seven, shared by Richard Petty and Bobby Allison. ... Rudd is tied with Petty for the all-time lead in top-10 Dover finishes with 26. ... Mark Martin (No. 6 Viagra Ford) has raced in 34 races at Dover, and has 15 top-five finishes, which leads all active drivers.
* "This is a great day for me. I just want to say that I'm excited, I'm motivated, I'm ready to do anything I can to make sure NASCAR keeps moving forward. I also understand the tremendous responsibility that's being entrusted to me, and I don't take that lightly. I do have, as everyone knows, great respect for this sport, the diverse group of people that make this sport so special and make it go. I do share the vision, beliefs and traditions of my father and his father before him -- that, above all, this sport has to continue to grow and get better." -- Brian France, newly-appointed NASCAR Chairman & CEO.
* "That's a lot of races at Dover. It's been a pretty good track for us sometimes over the years. I'm looking forward to this weekend especially since our team has been running so well. I think we're actually going to take the car we won with at Darlington which seems to be a pretty good car for us." -- Terry Labonte, who is expected to run in his 50th career NASCAR Winston Cup race at Dover.
* "Dover is a very tough track but also a lot of fun because it's so fast. It seems like one big, banked corner. It's a lot like Bristol. We've got to have the right balance at Dover to keep a lot of momentum going on our laps, but that's hard to do. But when you get it right, it's a fun track to race on." -- Robby Gordon
* "I grew up in Michigan and we had to worry more about tornadoes and blizzards. I've never been in a hurricane before and sure don't want to start. Those things look pretty bad. The people around Charlotte I have talked to said you really don't want any part of a hurricane and I'll take their word for it." -- Johnny Benson (No. 10 Valvoline Pontiac) on the threat of Hurricane Isabel.
* "Dover is the same as a lot of tracks and it's different than a lot of tracks. It is its own animal for the most part. You approach it differently than any other race track, even though you will use some of the knowledge you have from other race tracks to get around the place." -- Kyle Petty
* "The past few weeks especially have shown we can shake off the bad times and work together to bring on some good times. Man, it's a horrible feeling not doing well. And it's a great feeling when you do really well. But I know -- and most of the people on this race team know -- the best feeling in the world is standing there in Victory Lane, popping champagne, smiling for the cameras and knowing you did what you had to do." -- Ken Schrader (No. 49 BAM Racing Dodge) who has one of his four career NASCAR Winston Cup victories at Dover.
FROM THE ARCHIVES
Dave Marcis (54) and Darrell Waltrip (53) are the only drivers to have topped the 50-start mark at Dover in their NASCAR Winston Cup careers. Terry Labonte (No. 5 Kellogg's/got milk? Chevrolet) will attempt to make his 50th career start at Dover on Sunday and would join Ricky Rudd (No. 21 Motorcraft Ford -- expected to make start No. 52) as the only active drivers with 50 or more starts at the track. Labonte is also searching for his first career victory at Dover International Speedway.
What: MBNA America 400 (NASCAR Winston Cup Series race No. 28 of 36.)
Where: Dover (Delaware) International Speedway.
When: Sunday, September 21, 1 p.m. ET.
U.S. TV: NBC, 12:30 p.m. ET.
U.S. Radio: MRN/XM Satellite.
Race length: 400 laps/643.6 km/400 miles.
Track layout: 1-mile/1.609 km oval.