Kansas City: Raybestos Rookie pre-race notes

* Raybestos® Rookie Contender Jimmie Johnson scored his third career win in the MBNA All-American Heroes 400 at Dover International Speedway. Johnson led the race four times for 170 laps and officially scored the win by .535 seconds over Mark...

* Raybestos® Rookie Contender Jimmie Johnson scored his third career win in the MBNA All-American Heroes 400 at Dover International Speedway. Johnson led the race four times for 170 laps and officially scored the win by .535 seconds over Mark Martin. He led the most laps for the third time this season and for the second consecutive race at Dover. Johnson became the first Raybestos® Rookie in NASCAR history to win both Winston Cup races at a track in the same season. The win is his third in 31 career starts.

* Johnson's win ties him with Tony Stewart for most wins by a rookie in a single season. This is also the first time in NASCAR history that Raybestos® Rookies have posted back to back victories (Ryan Newman won the previous week at New Hampshire).

* Johnson cut into Ryan Newman's lead in the Raybestos® Rookie standings. Entering the Protection One 400 at Kansas Speedway, Newman leads Johnson by 16 points (331-315).

* Johnson and Newman have each been Raybestos® Rookie of the Race 14 times and have both finished in the top-10 in the same race nine times this season.

* Johnson's victory moved him into second place in the Winston Cup Series championship standings, 30 points behind leader Mark Martin. He is 44 ahead of third place Tony Stewart and 51 in front of fourth place Sterling Marlin.

* Johnson scored his 17th top-10 finish of the 2002 season, tying him with Mark Martin for most top-10s. He is the only driver to score 16 top-10 finishes in the 21 superspeedway races this season. Johnson has won three superspeedway races in his rookie season: California and both Dover races.

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* Newman finished eighth in the MBNA All-American Heroes 400, his 17th top-10 finish this season. His 13 top-five finishes are the most of any driver this season.

* Johnson was the only Raybestos® Rookie to lead a lap at Dover in either Winston Cup race this season. He led 358 of the 800 possible laps (45 percent).

* Newman and Jimmie Johnson became the third pair of Raybestos® Rookies to win in their rookie season. They joined Morgan Shepherd (Martinsville) and Ron Bouchard (Talladega) in 1981 and Matt Kenseth (Charlotte) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Texas and Richmond) in 2000.

* Newman was the only Raybestos® Rookie to lead a lap at New Hampshire.

* Newman was the highest qualifying Raybestos® Rookie at Dover, taking the fourth position in time trials. He has been top qualifying rookie in 16 races this season.

* Johnson won his fourth pole of the season at Richmond, which ties him with Bill Elliott for most poles in 2002.

* Entering the Kansas event, Newman has been the highest qualifying Raybestos® Rookie in six of the last seven races where time trials were held (Brickyard 400 through MBNA All-American Heroes 400). Newman has been highest qualifying Raybestos® Rookie 16 times in 2002.

* Johnson has led more miles this season than any other Raybestos® Rookie entering Sunday's race at Dover. He has led 25 times in 11 races for 988.75 miles (744 laps).

* Johnson has led the most laps in three races this season: Coca-Cola 600, MBNA Platinum 400, and MBNA All-American Heroes 400.

* Newman finished second in the 2001 Protection One 400 at Kansas Speedway, .413 second behind race winner Jeff Gordon.

* Kurt Busch was the Raybestos® Rookie of the Race at Kansas, scoring a ninth place finish completing all 267 laps of the race. He was the only first year driver to finish inside the top-10. Even more impressive was the fact Busch took a provisional and started the race from the 40th position.

* Kevin Harvick finished 16th on the lead lap. He and Busch were the only Raybestos® Rookies to complete all 400 miles of the event.

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* Five Raybestos® Rookies started the Kansas race and three were running at the finish of the event: Busch, Harvick, and Andy Houston (18th). Accidents eliminated the cars of Jason Leffler (28th) and Casey Atwood (43rd).

*   Jason Leffler took highest qualifying Raybestos® Rookie honors at Kansas
in style, winning the pole position for the race.  He was also the only
rookie to lead a lap in the race.  He held the top spot once for eight laps.

* The Raybestos® Rookie Class of 2002 made history during qualifying for the Monte Carlo 400 at Richmond. Jimmie Johnson won the pole for the event and Newman started second completing the first all-rookie front row in Winston Cup racing's modern era (1972-present).

* A Raybestos® Rookie has posted multiple victories five times in NASCAR Winston Cup history: Davey Allison (two wins in 1987), Tony Stewart (three wins in 1999), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (two wins in 2000), Kevin Harvick (two wins in 2001, and Jimmie Johnson (two wins in 2002).

* A Raybestos® Rookie Contender has now won at least one race in each of the last four seasons dating back to Tony Stewart's win at Richmond in September, 1999. Other freshman drivers to win: Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Richmond, 2000), Matt Kenseth (Charlotte, 2000), and Kevin Harvick (Atlanta, 2001).

* When Johnson and Newman won poles at Talladega and California in consecutive races, it was the first time since 1965 that a rookie won the pole position in back to back events. The last driver to accomplish the feat was Dick Hutcherson when he took the top starting spot at Myrtle Beach and Valdosta.

* By winning the pole for the Daytona 500, Johnson joined Loy Allen (1994) and Mike Skinner (1997) as the only drivers in their rookie season to win the pole for the Daytona 500. He is also among an elite group of modern era (since 1972) drivers who have won poles early in their careers. Johnson won his first Winston Cup pole position in just his fourth career start. Ryan Newman and Mark Martin both won a pole in their third career start, while Johnny Benson won his first career pole in his fourth start.

<pre> RAYBESTOS® ROOKIE CONTENDER POINT STANDINGS

DRIVER                  POINTS
Ryan Newman             331
Jimmie Johnson          315
Shawna Robinson          81
Carl Long                32

HIGHEST FINISHING RAYBESTOS® ROOKIES BY RACE

EVENT                                   HIGHEST FINISHING ROOKIE
Daytona 500                             Ryan Newman, seventh
Subway 400                              Ryan Newman, 14th
UAW-Daimler Chrysler 400                Ryan Newman, fourth
MBNA America 500                        Jimmie Johnson, third
Carolina Dodge Dealers 400              Ryan Newman, fifth
Food City 500                           Jimmie Johnson, seventh
Samsung/RadioShack 500                  Jimmie Johnson, fourth
Virginia 500                            Jimmie Johnson, 35th
 Aaron's 499                            Jimmie Johnson, seventh
NAPA Auto Parts 500                     Jimmie Johnson, first
Pontiac Excitement 400                  Ryan Newman, second
Coca-Cola Racing Family 600             Jimmie Johnson, seventh
MBNA 400                                Jimmie Johnson, first
Pocono 500                              Jimmie Johnson, third
Sirius Satellite Radio 400              Ryan Newman, third
Dodge/Save Mart 350                     Ryan Newman, ninth
Pepsi 400                               Jimmie Johnson, eighth
Tropicana 400                           Jimmie Johnson, fourth
New England 300                         Ryan Newman, fifth
Pennsylvania 500                        Ryan Newman, fifth
Brickyard 400                           Ryan Newman, fourth
Sirius Satellite Radio at The Glen      Ryan Newman, second
Pepsi 400 presented by Farmer Jack      Jimmie Johnson, seventh
Sharpie 500                             Jimmie Johnson, 34th
Mountain Dew Southern 500               Ryan Newman, second
Monte Carlo 400                         Ryan Newman, second
New Hampshire 300                       Ryan Newman, first
MBNA All-American Heroes 400            Jimmie Johnson, first

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Bill Elliott , Jeff Gordon , Matt Kenseth , Tony Stewart , Jason Leffler , Mike Skinner , Kevin Harvick , Shawna Robinson , Sterling Marlin , Andy Houston , Kurt Busch , Ryan Newman , Casey Atwood , Johnny Benson , Jimmie Johnson , Dick Hutcherson , Morgan Shepherd , Carl Long , Mark Martin , Davey Allison