Kenny Wallace Review

HARRISBURG, N.C., (Sept. 28, 1998) - In addition to bringing his helmet and firesuit to the racetrack, Square D Ford driver Kenny Wallace may start bringing a snake-bite kit as well. His short-lived run in yesterday's NAPA AutoCare 500 at ...

HARRISBURG, N.C., (Sept. 28, 1998) - In addition to bringing his helmet and firesuit to the racetrack, Square D Ford driver Kenny Wallace may start bringing a snake-bite kit as well. His short-lived run in yesterday's NAPA AutoCare 500 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway marked the second straight week that Wallace posted a mechanical DNF that left him last in the running order. The St. Louis native arrived in Martinsville still carrying the fang marks from the Sept. 20 MBNA Gold 400 at Dover (Del.) where he completed just two laps before a blown engine took him out of that event.

"I'm pretty aggravated right now," said Wallace upon climbing from his car in Martinsville's garage area. "I was trying really hard coming from the back to the front, but we just had too small of a radiator on the car and the engine overheated."

While Wallace's day behind the wheel of the Square D Ford was over on lap 150, his driving duties continued elsewhere. Richard "Slugger" Labbe, crew chief for the No. 28 team of Robert Yates Racing, quickly recruited Wallace to pilot the Texaco Havoline Taurus in relief of driver Kenny Irwin, who was suffering from heat exhaustion. Wallace obliged and brought the 28 car home to a 27th place finish. Ironically, Wallace scored his best career NASCAR Winston Cup finish in 1994 while driving the No. 28 car at the fall Martinsville race for an injured Ernie Irvan.

A Roman poet by the name of Ovid (43 B.C.-17 A.D.) posed the question, 'Isn't the best defense always a good attack?' When Square D Ford driver Kenny Wallace arrives at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway to prepare for the UAW-GM Quality 500, in the spirit of Ovid, his defense will be to attack the 1.5-mile oval.

"I'm going into Charlotte on the defensive," said Wallace. "My dream this whole year would be to qualify in first round at Charlotte. That way, I can have a good time the whole week."

In qualifying for last year's UAW-GM Quality 500, Wallace had to turn an incredibly fast lap in second round qualifying in order to make the race. He succeeded, as he was the fastest second round qualifier.

"I had so much faith in my ability to make that car do what I wanted it to do," said Wallace. "At one o'clock in the afternoon, I ran so fast that it would've been the 13th quickest time overall. I pulled out one whale of a lap. Before I went out I said, 'Car, now look here. You've got two choices - either stick or wreck.' The car decided to stick because I was going no matter what."

Kenny Wallace's Performance Profile at Charlotte ----------------

Year         Event               Start   Finish  Status/Laps        Earnings
1998             Coca-Cola 600     42      25        Running/398    $28,700 
1997             Coca-Cola 600     23      39        Accident/192        $25,400
             UAW-GM 500               26      28         Running/330    $23,150
1996             Coca-Cola 600     16      32         Engine/332        $8,445 
             UAW-GM 500               41      30        Running/325    $8,365 
1995             Coca-Cola 600     37      31         Rear End/333        $6,750 
1994            Mello Yellow 500   21      14         Running/332        $22,100 
1993             Coca-Cola 600     24      23         Running/392        $10,000 
             Mello Yellow 500  42      35        Running/304        $5,975 
1991             Coca-Cola 600     19      13         Running/398        $17,700 

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Ernie Irvan , Kenny Wallace , Robert Yates
Teams Yates Racing