News 97-11-19

NASCARFans E-Mail List See, the news hasn't slacked off yet, but it's definately slowing down......... ===== Debbie of Circuit City's sports marketing area, let me know that the new paint scheme for Hut Stricklin's ...

NASCARFans E-Mail List

See, the news hasn't slacked off yet, but it's definately slowing down......... ===== Debbie of Circuit City's sports marketing area, let me know that the new paint scheme for Hut Stricklin's #8 Circuit City Chevrolet Monte Carlo is on the Circuit City webpage at:

http://circuitcity.pic.net/nascar/hut.html

Check it out, it looks good. ===== Jayski ponders the unsolved questions:

Who will Geoff Bodines sponsor be?, who will sponsor Brett Bodines team?, what will the Washington-Erving team do?, who will sponsor and drive the #98 Ford?, who will sponsor DW?, will he still consider a 2nd team?, what will Robby Gordon do?, who will driver the #64 Arby's Fan Car?, will Bud Moore come back?, will ARCA champ Tim Steele make the move up to WC and with what team?, will the Harry Ranier/Ozzie Smith WC team really come to fruition?, who will sponsor the #29?, who will sponsor the #'s 78, 91 and 95?, will Billy Standridge find a sponsor?, and will the David Blair team be back in 1998 after running Kenny Irwin in a Yates car??? ===== This week, Rick Hendrick is basking in the glory of his third consecutive NASCAR Winston Cup Series championship. The happiest car owner on the circuit, however, could very well be Andy Petree. Petree, the owner of the No. 33 Skoal Bandit Chevrolet, has won championships before as crew chief for Dale Earnhardt. But he didn't come close to winning the title this year as Hendrick did with driver Jeff Gordon. However, that wasn't a realistic goal for his first-year race team. Instead, the Skoal Bandit team, anchored by driver Ken Schrader, conquered one of its major objectives during its initial campaign in NASCAR's premier series -- to crack the top-10 in the point standings. Schrader finished 20th in Sunday's NAPA 500, good enough to nip Johnny Benson by one point for 10th place in the standings and to assure Schrader his place on stage at the NASCAR Winston Cup Series Awards Banquet in New York City on Dec. 5. "I couldn't be happier for these guys," Petree said. "I'm so proud of this team. We started off this year with new everything -- new driver, new car owner -- new everything. To come out of here with a top-10 in the points is just a major league effort. I'm so proud of these guys, I can't stand it." Sunday wasn't without its anxious moments. During one pit stop late in the NAPA 500, NASCAR officials held Schrader on pit road when a small fire broke out underneath the No. 33 Chevrolet and wouldn't release him until it was out. Schrader lost several positions during the incident, but got a couple back before the checkered flag fell. Benson wound up finishing 10th in the race, but fell just short of overtaking Schrader for the final spot in the top-10 in the standings. Ted Musgrave, who held down the 10th spot in the standings going into the race, finished 31st and wound up finishing 12th in the points. After a mediocre first half of the season, Schrader and the Skoal Bandit team caught fire in the second half and made up a huge chunk of ground in the standings. As late as the Pepsi 400 in Daytona on July 4, Schrader was 19th in the points with only three top-10s to his credit. Since then, Schrader recorded five top-10 runs, including season best fourth place finishes at both Talladega and Phoenix, to make a run on the top-10. "Kenny Schrader is the key to the whole thing," Petree said of his driver, who signed with Petree following the 1996 season after nine years with Hendrick. "If we hadn't gotten him, we wouldn't be standing here. I'm so happy to have him, and I love him to death." The Skoal Bandit team didn't accomplish one of its major goals it set for 1997, namely to win a race (Schrader hasn't won one since 1991). Petree is confident, however, that it won't be long before that happens. But that's just one of the goals for 1998. Schrader is one of the five contenders for the first $1 million prize in R.J. Reynolds' "No Bull Five" bonanza beginning at the Daytona 500 in February. By season's end, Petree also expects to be in the hunt for a championship. "To me, this (finishing in the top-10) compares to the feeling of winning the championship," said Petree, who won titles with Earnhardt in 1993 and '94. "It's a great feeling. I can't explain it. "We've got some momentum in '98. We're going for that 'No Bull Five' in Daytona. A lot of good things are going for this team right now." (NASCAR Online) ===== Mike Irwin (mailto:mike@nascarfans.com) NASCAR Fans _______________________________________

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Brett Bodine , Jeff Gordon , Ken Schrader , Robby Gordon , Hut Stricklin , Ted Musgrave , Tim Steele