Rudd hopes 700th start is a winner at Darlington

DARLINGTON, S.C. - Ricky Rudd, driver of the No. 28 Texaco/Havoline Ford, will make his 700th career NASCAR Winston Cup Series start in Sunday's Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 at Darlington Raceway. Rudd, 44, will become only the fifth driver...

DARLINGTON, S.C. - Ricky Rudd, driver of the No. 28 Texaco/Havoline Ford, will make his 700th career NASCAR Winston Cup Series start in Sunday's Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 at Darlington Raceway. Rudd, 44, will become only the fifth driver to achieve the 700-race milestone, joining Richard Petty (1,177), Dave Marcis (878), Bobby Allison (717) and Darrell Waltrip (809).

"That's a lot of races," Rudd said. "I'm really happy to be sitting where I'm sitting for my 700th start. There are a lot of drivers now in our mid-40s and it's great to be in such a competitive car. The Texaco/Havoline Taurus has been strong in every race this season."

Rudd enters Sunday's race ninth in the point standings after a sixth-place finish in Atlanta.

"We've been really good all year," Rudd said. "We came out of Daytona with a fourth-place finish. We had mechanical problems at Rockingham and Las Vegas that dropped us back in the standings. Then we rallied at Atlanta for a solid finish.

"The down side is that we're only ninth in points. The up side is that in both the Rockingham and Las Vegas races we were definitely a top-five car with a shot to win. We all want to win races and it's great to be in a position to do that."

Rudd's career began on March 2, 1975, at North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham. He started 26th and finished 11th. Rudd anticipates a better day on Sunday.

"I really love going to Darlington," Rudd said. "It's a challenging race track and I love a challenge. I won there in the spring of 1991 and I've had a lot of really good runs there. We finished eighth there last fall and I think we can improve on that this weekend."

-PPRP

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Darrell Waltrip , Dave Marcis , Richard Petty , Bobby Allison