Pocono Michael Waltrip Preview

Improvement is top of the list for Michael Waltrip at Pocono HARRISBURG, N.C. (July 21, 1999) - Philips Chevrolet driver Michael Waltrip knows a good season is well within reach if he and his Mattei Motorsports teammates improve on their first...

Improvement is top of the list for Michael Waltrip at Pocono

HARRISBURG, N.C. (July 21, 1999) - Philips Chevrolet driver Michael Waltrip knows a good season is well within reach if he and his Mattei Motorsports teammates improve on their first half results. Pocono Raceway is the first place on the schedule where Waltrip can begin that improvement. During the Winston Cup Series' first stop there in June, Waltrip was spun into the turn one wall 52 laps from the checkered and had to settle for a 37th place finish at a track where he is accustomed to running well.

Michael Waltrip at Pocono (career)...

Starts:  27
Top 5s:  1
Top 10s:  3
Top 15s:  13
Ave. start:  21.85
Ave. finish:  19.11
Winnings:  $420,685
Best start:  5th ('91)
Best finish:  2nd ('88)
1999:  37th (crashed while running 14th)
Trends:  Posted 2 top 10s and 10 top 15s in last 14 starts

Michael Waltrip on...

...this weekend's race:

"This is an important race for this Philips team. It's the first time on a non-restrictor plate track that we've been able to go back for a second trip. We're heading back up there with a pretty good qualifying run under our belts from the first time, and then a decent run in the race. The key to making this a successful season is performing better in the second half than we did in the first, and this week is a major step. The thing we have to make sure during this trip to Pocono is to up our performance a notch. Learn from what we did the first time there, and be better this time."

...aggressive driving:

"Sometimes you have to be aggressive and sometimes you have to be smart. You just try to balance all that. This thing has gotten so competitive that everybody tries to get every inch that they can every second. You can either drive defensively and watch for that stuff, or you can just jump in there with them. I don't mind being aggressive, but I also like to be smart. You're not going to let anybody take anything away from you without making sure you get it back from them. That's about what it amounts to. It's a deal where if you feel like somebody ripped you off, then you say, 'Well, we're not going to have that.'"

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Michael Waltrip