Frank Stoddard wins "IRWIN Crew Chief of the Week" Honors

Executing a brilliant pit strategy, No. 99 Crew Chief Frank Stoddard takes home IRWIN Crew Chief of the Week Honors. VERNON HILLS, Ill., May 21, 2002 - Last Saturday's The Winston brought a new format, the largest field in the race's history and...

Executing a brilliant pit strategy, No. 99 Crew Chief Frank Stoddard takes home IRWIN Crew Chief of the Week Honors.

VERNON HILLS, Ill., May 21, 2002 - Last Saturday's The Winston brought a new format, the largest field in the race's history and a few unexpected twists and turns compliments of the No. 99 CITGO Racing team. As a result, team crew chief Frank Stoddard takes home this week's"IRWIN Rough to the Finish" award for the team's efforts at Lowe's Motor Speedway.

After posting the fourth fastest qualifying time, Jeff Burton and the No. 99 crew devised a secret strategy for Saturday's all-star event that would prove to be brilliant. After two early cautions, most of the remaining teams were planning to make their mandatory green flag pit stop. However, Stoddard had other ideas and kept the No. 99 out on the track. This decision allowed Burton to climb from 12th to 1st position in a matter of a few laps. Finally, on lap 39, Burton pitted and made it out in time to cross the start/finish line in second, allowing the team to advance to the race's second segment. The No. 99 team's pit strategy put them in great position early, but unfortunately it just wasn't meant to be as they failed to make the night's third and final segment.

"The No. 99 CITGO team did a great job in the pits this past weekend," said Stoddard. "We had a great pit strategy that worked in the first round of The Winston and it's too bad that we couldn't carry that momentum through to the end. But my hats off to all those guys in the pits - they really came through for us when it counted."

Each week throughout the 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup season, IRWIN, makers of professional power tool accessories like MARATHON PLUS saw blades and SPEEDBOR flat bits, is partnering with Performance Racing Network to honor the crew chief who had the toughest day in the pits, but still managed to help his team to a strong finish.

"IRWIN is proud to honor the hard-working crew chiefs of NASCAR Winston Cup Racing with this award," said Chris Connington, Vice President, Marketing, IRWIN. "Much like our line of bits and blades optimize a power tool's performance, these professionals have had to perform in all types of conditions, with many surprises and under intense pressure. Through the course of the race the selected crew has been able to optimize their car's performance."

The IRWIN Rough to the Finish Award includes an assortment of tools for the crew chief and a $250 check donated to the Connie Parsons Memorial Fund in the racing team's name. The year-end winner of the crew chief points standings will win a $5,000 check donated to the Fund. Race fans wanting to make a contribution to the Fund may do so by sending it to The Connie Parsons Memorial Fund, PO Box 443, Ellerbe, NC 28338.

In addition to the crew chief award, IRWIN is also sponsoring the weekly nationally syndicated radio show,"Fast Talk with Benny Parsons", throughout the upcoming year.

"Working with Benny Parsons and the PRN family is a natural fit for the IRWIN bits and blades line," said Connington. "The NASCAR fan-base is a hands-on group of people that are driven to do it themselves, if they can. IRWIN bits and blades are engineered to last long and provide precise cuts that will help professionals and DIYers do their best work."

IRWIN offers a complete line of saw blades and drill bits. From framing to the finest trim work; the performance of your bit and/or blade can be the difference between a long, hard day or one that runs smooth and easy. IRWIN specializes in the engineering and the manufacturing of these high performance bits and blades. Each is engineered to last, to deliver precision cuts and to optimize the output of your power tool. IRWIN drill bits includes SPEEDBOR wood boring bits, TURBOMAX drill bits, UNI-BIT step drill bits, and the unique IRWIN multi-purpose drill bits that penetrate various materials such as brick, marble, plastic, metal, cement and wood. A complete list of IRWIN products and capabilities is online at www.irwintool.com.

IRWIN is a brand of American Tool Companies, Inc., a global manufacturer and marketer of top-quality hand tools, power tool accessories, clamping tools and marking tools. American Tool Companies employs more than 4,000 people at facilities in Illinois, Nebraska, Ohio, Wisconsin, Maine, New York and in 11 other countries.

Other American Tool product lines include VISE-GRIP® locking tools, QUICK-GRIP® clamping tools, STRAIT-LINE® marking tools and RECORD® hand tools. For company information, customers can visit www.americantool.com.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeff Burton , Benny Parsons