Rain delays 19th Pocono 500 to Monday By Dave Rodman LONG POND, Pa. (June 18, 2000) Persistent rain Sunday postponed the start of the 19th annual Pocono 500 at Pocono Raceway until Monday morning at 10 a.m. ET. The 15th race of the ...
Rain delays 19th Pocono 500 to Monday By Dave Rodman
LONG POND, Pa. (June 18, 2000) Persistent rain Sunday postponed the start of the 19th annual Pocono 500 at Pocono Raceway until Monday morning at 10 a.m. ET. The 15th race of the 34-event NASCAR Winston Cup Series was scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. ET. Driver introductions were conducted on schedule at 12:45 p.m. but light but steady rain eventually washed out attempts to dry the track. The decision to reschedule was made about 3:30 p.m. ET when it was determined there was insufficient time to dry the track and complete the event. Radio.
The early summer Pocono NASCAR Winston Cup race was last re-scheduled by rain in 1979. Cale Yarborough won the Coca-Cola 500 by defeating Richard Petty on the Monday following the original race date.
The last postponement of a NASCAR Winston Cup race to Monday was at Lowe's Motor Speedway last October.
Cars have not been on the speedway since Saturday afternoon, when the final Happy Hour practice was ended about 15 minutes early by another rain shower. The rain-washed speedway will present a challenge to teams.
"What they will probably do is go back to something closer to a qualifying set-up so they can adjust it as they go," said TNN commentator Buddy Baker, a former NASCAR Winston Cup driver. "They'll start with a lot of adjustability so they can adjust on it all day long and get that perfect set-up for the last 100 miles."
While rainouts disrupt the schedules of everyone involved, NASCAR Winston Cup teams are particularly concerned with their travel plans to the next event, the June 25 Save Mart/Kragen 350 at Sears Point Raceway in Sonoma, Calif.
Rusty Wallace won the Bud Pole Award on Friday and will lead the 43-car field to the green flag. Wallace turned a lap of 52.440 seconds, a record average speed of 171.625 mph, to win his fifth pole of the season.
John Andretti will start second in the STP/Cheerios Pontiac, his third top-10 start of the season and his best in 15 races.
Bobby Labonte, the defending champion of the Pocono 500, will start 11th in the Interstate Batteries Pontiac. His teammate, Tony Stewart, will start the Home Depot Pontiac ninth as he attempts to win his third straight NASCAR Winston Cup race.