News 97-10-21

NASCARFans E-Mail List Visit the Ticket Trader at the NASCARFans web site for free buy/sell ads for racing tickets: http://www.nascarfans.com ===== This past weekend the BGNN Championship was won by Mike Stefanik. Mike also clinched the ...

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http://www.nascarfans.com ===== This past weekend the BGNN Championship was won by Mike Stefanik. Mike also clinched the Featherlight Mod. Tour Championship.

Congratulations to him and his teams for this accomplishment.

There are only a couple of other instances where someone has won two NASCAR titles in the same year. In 1958, Lee Petty won the Late Model Short Track division, the same year that he won the second of his three Winston Cup titles. In 1983, Mike Alexander won both the Grand American Stock Car division and the Winston Racing Series national title.

Thanks to David Cornutt for the history information. ===== NASCAR Winston Cup Series driver Lake Speed, "shook down" a new NASCAR Winston Cup Ford Taurus at Daytona International Speedway Monday in preparation for the next year's Feb. 15 Daytona 500. Speed and other teams will replace their Ford Thunderbirds with the Taurus in 1998. "This is our first time at the race track with the new Taurus," said Speed, driver of the Fords owned by Harry Melling and sponsored by Advantage Camo. "We're just going through the procedure, finding out what the car likes and what it dislikes." (NASCAR Online, thanks to Joe Linville for sending this to me) ===== You hear a lot about the accessibility of NASCAR drivers, about how the Winston Cup stars gladly will sign more autographs in a day than some professional athletes sign in a season.

And there's some truth in that, but it's also not a given with every driver. Few, though, will do what Mark Martin did two months ago at Michigan.

Martin walked out of his hauler and headed directly toward a fence lined with fans hoping to get a quick scribble from drivers on their way to practice.

Martin, though, was on his way simply to sign autographs.

He walked down the line, signed and signed and signed for nearly 20 minutes, then walked directly back to his hauler as the line of fans cheered appreciatively.

This is the same guy who's pleasantly taken aback by what he sees as a recent bulge in his fan support.

"The last couple of months, I've really had a big boom in Mark Martin fans," he said recently while relaxing in his hauler's lounge. "I think it's great, I think it's awesome. There's a lot of people pulling for us in this championship that weren't fans of mine before but just want to see somebody make a race of this down to the end."

Or, as Martin admits, see somebody - anybody - keep Jeff Gordon from winning the points championship.

Thing is, Martin has been making a lot of new fans during this second half of the season, in which he's been No. 2 almost throughout. He hasn't blown off the increased demands for his time, hasn't blown off public appearances, hasn't stopped signing autographs.

All the while, he keeps pushing Gordon. Going into Sunday's AC Delco 400 at Rockingham, Martin trails Gordon by 110 points with three races remaining.

"Life changes dramatically as you go down to the wire as a contender," Martin said. ". . . Every minute of my life has been totally absorbed by this thing. It's intense." (Skip Wood, Richmond Times-Dispatch) ===== For those of you with web access, at http://www.mciracing.com there's a pretty good story about Cale Yarborough and Mickey Mantle, written by Tom Higgins of MCI Racing. ===== Veteran NASCAR driver Greg Sacks of Mattituck, N.Y., will drive the No. 40 Team SABCO/Coors Light Chevrolet Monte Carlo for the remainder of the 1997 NASCAR Winston Cup season, which includes the Oct. 24-26 ACDelco 400 at Rockingham, N.C.; Oct. 31-Nov. 2 Dura-Lube 500 at Phoenix; and the Nov. 14-16 NAPA 500 at Atlanta. Sacks, 44, has played a fill-in role for Team SABCO this year driving the No. 40 Chevrolet in three events so far. He drove for an injured Robby Gordon in the June 8 Pocono 500 and the June 22 California 500. After Gordon was released on Sept. 30, Sacks assumed the No. 40 ride for the Oct. 12 DieHard 500 at Talladega, Ala., where the driver led numerous laps before being consumed in a late-race, multi-car accident triggered by a cut tire on Jeff Gordon's No. 24. (NASCAR Online) ===== Former NASCAR Winston Cup champion Bill Elliott will compete in the Carquest Auto Parts 420K NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race on Nov. 9 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway as a teammate to Mike Bliss, the most recent winner in the touring series for full-size pickup trucks. Elliott, 11-time winner of the coveted Most Popular Driver Award on the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, will compete in the season-ending event for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series in a Ford F-150 pickup that will run as a team truck to series regular Bliss' No. 2 Team ASE Ford. Bliss, who drives for team owner Jim Smith, won the most recent series event held Oct. 18 at the California Speedway. (NASCAR Online) ===== Mike Irwin (mailto:mike@nascarfans.com) NASCAR Fans _______________________________________

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Bill Elliott , Jeff Gordon , Robby Gordon , Mike Bliss , Greg Sacks , Jim Smith , Cale Yarborough , Tim Richmond , Mark Martin , Lee Petty