Elliot looks to kiss Indianapolis bricks

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (July 31, 2001) - The Brickyard 400 is one of the few races on the NASCAR Winston Cup circuit that Bill Elliott has not won. He's come close - both qualifying and finishing in the top 10 in four of seven appearances there. ...

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (July 31, 2001) - The Brickyard 400 is one of the few races on the NASCAR Winston Cup circuit that Bill Elliott has not won. He's come close - both qualifying and finishing in the top 10 in four of seven appearances there. But, he hopes that his debut at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in a Dodge Intrepid R/T will be the factor that finally puts him in the winner's circle.

Elliott is coming off a strong fourth place finish at Pocono last weekend, his second top five for the season and his fourth top 10 in the last seven races. He finished third at Indianapolis last year, one of his two best finishes for the year.

During the recent test at Indianapolis, Elliott was second fastest in the first day of practice. After a "nose job" on the No. 9 Dodge Intrepid R/T this week to incorporate the rules change allowing a two-inch extension on the front air dam, Elliott hopes his race car has the downforce and the horsepower to finally give him at win at the fabled track.

Bill Elliott, driver of the No. 9 Dodge Dealers Intrepid R/T

How important is it to win the Brickyard 400?

"The Brickyard has become an important race. We really need to run well at Indy. This race a year ago, I ran well in my car. We tested there and were pretty good. But with this rules change, we'll see what Indy brings us. It really pays good, so you need to run good there.

Has the Evernham Motorsports program turned around and is a win far off?

"We needed a good run last weekend, and the guys worked hard to get one. Everything worked good. The car drove good for the most part. That's what we've got to shoot for each and every week. You never feel like you've got it turned around in this business, but if we can keep running like we did last week, you never know. We've just got to keep working through this stuff. Ray and all the guys have really worked hard, and if we can just keep working, we've got the team that can do it."

Bill Elliott By the Numbers

* Bill Elliott has three top fives and five top 10s in only seven appearances at the Brickyard 400. His top finish at the track is third, which he earned in both his first (1994) and most recent (2000) visit to the track. Elliott has either qualified or finished in the top 10 at six of his seven visits to the track-in four Brickyard races he accomplished both.

* Presently, Elliott and the No. 9 team have earned four top 10 finishes in their last seven races and five overall for the season. They finished ninth at Michigan and Sears Point, 10th at Chicagoland and fourth at the second race at Pocono.

* This will be Elliott's 644th start in a NASCAR Winston Cup points event. If he makes every race, his 650th start will be when he returns to New Hampshire International Speedway for the New Hampshire 300 on September 16th.

* Bill Elliott has jumped three spots in the points standings and now ranks 16th. He has remained within the top 20 for the entire year. His average start is 13.6 and his average finish is 19th. With $1,777,881 in earnings, (excluding non-point events) Elliott leads all Dodge drivers with money earned this season.

-Dodge Motorsports

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Bill Elliott