Waltrip's Pit Crew expands points lead after capturing win at Chicagoland Speedway At the halfway point of the NASCAR Winston Cup season it appears that Michael Waltrip's pit crew is well on its way to collecting the $200,000 season bonus that...
Waltrip's Pit Crew expands points lead after capturing win at Chicagoland Speedway
At the halfway point of the NASCAR Winston Cup season it appears that Michael Waltrip's pit crew is well on its way to collecting the $200,000 season bonus that goes to the champion of the McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERade.
Waltrip's NAPA pit crew became the first team to win three McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championships this season when the No. 15 crew outscored the participating field in Sunday's Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland Speedway.
Waltrip's No. 15 Chevrolet, owned by Dale Earnhardt Inc., spent the least amount of aggregate time off the track - 190.368 seconds. Jeff Burton's pit crew came in second with a time of 193.689 and Tony Stewart's crew was third at 225.375.
The pit crew victory increased the lead for Waltrip's team. After 18 races, the No. 15 crew has a commanding lead with 681 points. Dale Earnhardt's pit crew is second with 609 points and Bobby Labonte's crew is third with 582.
Waltrip's pit crew also leads in prize money with $60,000 collected -- $20,000 for each McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship victory. The team's other pit crew wins were at the season-opening Daytona 500 (Feb. 16) and at Dover (June 1).
"The best part about leading this competition, is our team is just that - a team," said crew chief Richard "Slugger" Labbe, "The McDonald's/POWERade pit crew challenge is a great way for other people to see how this group has jelled since its inception. There are forty-some crew members that make up the NAPA team and only eight of them really ever get any credit for the success we've enjoyed this year.
"Those guys that make up the guts of the NAPA team put the everyday pieces into place, which allow the over-the-wall guys to excel in each of their positions. I am extremely proud of our over-the-wall team, but it's the overall effort that impresses me the most."
The over-the-wall pit crew for Waltrip's team consists of: Brian Chase (jackman), Jeff Opal (gasman), Chris Crumley (front tire changer), Greg Osborne (rear tire changer), Shawn Ward (front tire carrier), Chad Walter (rear tire carrier) and Pete Rondeau (catch can).
During each 2003 NASCAR Winston Cup points event, the participating team whose car spends the least amount of aggregate time off the race track will be named the weekly winner of the McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERADE, provided the team's driver takes the green flag at the beginning of the event and the checkered flag at the conclusion of the event. A timing line at the entrance and exit of pit road triggers the car's transponder and records the total time spent off the race track.
The point distribution per race is: 43 points for first place, descending in increments of one. The season champion of the McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERADE will receive a $200,000 bonus.
The McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERADE is the largest monetary contingency program in NASCAR history.
<pre> Top 10 Pit Crews For Participating Teams In Sunday's (July 13) Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland Speedway
1. Michael Waltrip Team 190.368 Seconds 2. Jeff Burton Team 193.689 3. Tony Stewart Team 225.375 4. Jeff Green Team 227.499 5. Ricky Rudd Team 236.183 6. Jamie McMurray Team 263.747 7. Jimmy Spencer Team 269.277 8. Greg Biffle Team 318.765 9. Elliott Sadler Team 336.530 10. Dave Blaney Team 344.995
2003 Winners of The McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERADE:
Race Team Winner Daytona (Feb. 16) Michael Waltrip Team Rockingham (Feb. 23) Dave Blaney Team Las Vegas (March 2) Dale Earnhardt Jr. Team Atlanta (March 9) Dale Earnhardt Jr. Team Darlington (March 16) Jeff Green Team (Richard Childress Racing) Bristol (March 23) Bill Elliott Team Texas (March 30) Robby Gordon Team Talladega (April 6) Bill Elliott Team Martinsville (April 13) Bobby Labonte Team California (April 27) Bobby Labonte Team Richmond (May 3) Jeff Burton Team Charlotte (May 25) Dale Jarrett Team Dover (June 1) Michael Waltrip Team Pocono (June 8) Todd Bodine Team Michigan (June 15) Sterling Marlin Team Sonoma (June 22) Robby Gordon Team Daytona (July 5) Jeff Burton Team Chicago (July 13) Michael Waltrip Team
Point Standings For NASCAR Winston Cup Teams Participating In The McDonald's Drive-Thru Pit Championship fueled by POWERADE: (following Chicago 7/13/03; pit crew wins in parentheses)
Pos. Car# Pit Crew of Points 1 15 Michael Waltrip Team (3) 681 2 8 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Team (2) 609 3 18 Bobby Labonte Team (2) 582 4 31 Robby Gordon Team (2) 579 5 40 Sterling Marlin Team (1) 563 6 38 Elliott Sadler Team 545 T7 16 Greg Biffle Team 544 T7 97 Kurt Busch Team 544 9 42 Jamie McMurray Team 510 10 77 Dave Blaney Team (1) 502 11 9 Bill Elliott Team (2) 481 12 20 Tony Stewart Team 479 T13 1 Jeff Green Team 476 T13 99 Jeff Burton Team (2) 476 15 41 Casey Mears Team 473 16 30 Steve Park Team (1) 467 17 21 Ricky Rudd Team 455 18 54 Todd Bodine Team (1) 453 T19 43 Christian Fittipaldi Team 450 T19 88 Dale Jarrett Team (1) 450 21 7 Jimmy Spencer Team 444 22 45 Kyle Petty Team 442 23 01 Jerry Nadeau Team 431 24 0 Jack Sprague Team 419 25 74 Tony Raines Team 406 26 49 Kenny Schrader Team 392 27 14 Larry Foyt Team 221 28 11 Brett Bodine Team 128 29 09 Phoenix Racing 97 30 66 Hideo Fukuyama Team 46 T31 37 Derrike Cope Team 28 T31 02 Hermie Sadler Team 28 33 57 (Edward Campbell car owner) 26 34 33 (Andy Petree car owner) 22
*joined program at fifth race of season - Darlington, 3/16